She walked into what had once been the Great Hall of Hogwarts. Once, before the war against Lord Voldemort, it had been one of the happiest places on Earth. Now, it served as a memorial to those killed in the war.

Where once was light

Now darkness falls

The Head table still stood where it had for so long, and the four House tables remained in the same place as always. In the back of each chair, on the seat of each bench were carved the names of those fallen. The list was all too long. Her hand brushed the surface of the Gryffindor table, and she closed her eyes as the memories came rushing back. Memories of a time when she had lived with a smile on her face. A time when she had loved and been loved. The memories seemed so far away now.

Where once was love

Love is no more

Albus Dumbledore...Never in her deepest nightmares had she thought that Headmaster Dumbledore would fall in battle, but he had. Thinking about it now, she should have known he would. He wasn't the kind of person to sit back and let others do the work for him. But still..He had been their support, the one they could turn to when all else failed. The one that would never let them down. She remembered the day he died. Even the unshakeable Severus Snape had cried then. They all had. Albus Dumbledore had been a great man, and the emptiness he left behind too large to fill.

She had tried to forget. God knew she had tried, but she just couldn't say good bye. Not yet, not now, not ever. She had worked so hard, tried too hard, but she couldn't say it. She would never forget. Never.

Don't say good bye

Don't say I didn't try

She could feel tears trickling down her cheeks. These memories were the hardest to have, and the ones she would always have. She cried as she had cried for so long now. She doubted she would ever go through a whole day without crying again. Her tears fell like rain, like hail.

She reached a special place on the Gryffindor bench. Her fingers brushed the name carved in the wood. Harry Potter, The Boy Who Lived. Harry Potter, The Man Who Died For Our Freedom. That freedom had come at a high cost.

Severus Snape. The man was still alive, but his name had been carved into the back of his chair at the Head table. He had been offered the Order of the Phoenix after the war, but he had refused it. He told them to give it to those who really deserved it. The war had left him a broken man, but never would he loose his honour. He would go to the history books as one of the bravest men of his time.

These tears we cry

Are falling rain

The Ministry had told them that Voldemort would be dead and buried before the end of the year. They told them they didn't need to take refuge anywhere, that it was safe as no Death Eaters would attack while the Ministry was so strong. A few left anyway, but many believed their lies. Their corpses weren't found until after the war.

After the war, the Ministry dared to put the blame on Albus Dumbledore. But Fudge had come to the wrong place if he thought that they'd just accept that he blamed the kindest, the purest, the most honourable man in history. No, the survivors of Hogwarts had risen up and Fudge never again dared to blame Dumbledore.

For all the lies you told us

The hurt, the blame

Alone. She alone survived. Of all her friends, she alone was still breathing. She felt like she had no home. She was lost, and no one could show her the way back. She knew all survivors felt the same. Hogwarts had been their home, a safe haven, and it was gone. Reduced to a mere memorial, an empty ruin, a shadow of what once existed.

And we will weep, to be so alone

We are lost,

We can never go home

The war had changed her greatly. She could no longer laugh, she couldn't smile, she couldn't feel. Things might have turned out differently if there had been someone there for her, someone to comfort her after the war had ended. But there had been none. All who knew her was gone, all she held dear would never return.

So in the end, I'll be what I will be

No loyal friend was ever there for me

She stood at the foot of the Head table and gazed out over the Great Hall. Now, she had come here, seen the names, honoured their memories. Now, she could say good bye. But she would always remember.

She would always remember the ones who stayed and fought, while others fled and deserted them. She would never forgive Cornelius Fudge for his betrayal of those who trusted him.

Now we say good bye

We say you didn't try

She walked out of the Hall, just as Fudge and his closest co-workers entered. Fudge was crying, and for some reason it made her angry. He had no right to cry over the dead who rested within these halls. He betrayed them, and he never regretted it. She might have accepted his tears earlier, but now, they were too late.

He couldn't take back the lies he had told, he couldn't undo the hurt and blame. He had no right to cry now.

These tears you cry

Have come too late

Take back the lies

The hurt, the blame

She walked on towards the entrance. Her steps echoed in the deserted hallways. The only greetings she received were those of the ghosts who haunted the castle. She thought about the Ministry and Cornelius Fudge, wondered how they would have acted, had they been in her position during the war.

She had experiences and memories they would never have. They would never at a copy of Hogwarts: A History and wish they could just undo the last seven years of their lives. They would never sing the sorting hat song and cry, remembering who they were not singing it with. But they too, would remember the war, and they would weep, for they knew they were to blame.

And you will weep

When you face the end alone

Hermione Granger stepped out into the clear winter air. She walked down to gravel road to Hogsmead, never once turning her head to look at the empty castle behind her. It held too many painful memories; too many ghosts haunted its hallway. It had once been her home. Now, it was merely a grave.

You are lost

You can never go home