I wish I had a ring.

I've never wished it before, never felt the need to. Before, before you were always there, we were always together, and...

And if I'm honest, I thought it was a phase. I was too boy crazy to be gay, right? Right. And kissing you, touching you, clinging to you on those nights, those horrid, dark nights, where Voldemort seemed to be in the very castle, in our seventh year, that was just comfort, just a way to forget, to leave the real world behind.

As real as it ever got, because when I remember it now, we seem more real, you seem more real.

The others don't see it. They don't see it as I sit here, doing paperwork, as if somehow treaties and contracts will help the war effort, will help defeat Voldemort, the Deatheaters, anything. As if they will help keep you safe, so far away, God knows where.

You're not here, anyway, and I...I have nothing. I am your roommate, your best friend. I don't have a ring; I don't have a document signed by any higher authority. I never even told you that I loved you, though you told me often enough. I can make no claims on you. I can't even wait for you, because you're not mine, because I was too slow, too stupid.

Hermione called me vapid once – guess she was right. Guess I didn't see it until you left. Didn't realize until you were standing there, in what goes as a living room, saying goodbye, saying you had to fight.

You're auror, of course you did. Do. And you kissed me, chaste, dry.

When I try to picture it, you're crying. Maybe you were, maybe I was.

I sit here and wait. I sit here, next to Ernie MacMillian, Percy Weasley, many I don't know the names of – the weak ones, the ones not brave, not smart, not trustworthy enough to be at the front. We sit and work, but all it feels like we're doing is holding our collective breath, waiting for a signal, a win, a loss. A list of dead.

I can't do anything, but that. I sit and wait for you, Parvati, and I don't even know if you're coming back. I don't know if you're coming back for me. I don't know...I don't know that if we win, I'll have a home. I may survive this war, and you may not, and all I'll have are regrets. I don't even have a ring.