Disclaimer: yes I don't Harry Potter or JKR's characters. There are a few characters that are mine in later chapters but that's it. -bows down to the god of copywriting-
Cheers broke July 17th's calm sunrise. Hundreds of people pressed into the court yard of Hogwarts only to have it grow in size to allow hundreds more to enter the area. Even at this hour the place was buzzing with activity and anticipation. Expectations and hype had built up since the first news release of Harry Potter's victory over He-who-must-not-be-named. Crowds spoke loudly and the ding could be heard all the way up to the highest room of Hogwarts.
Harry had entered Albus's tower office and slashed his hand to silence the hum of activity below. Albus Dumbledore pointedly ignored the teen. The young man had been preoccupied with the after effects of his fight with Tom Riddle. The Headmaster's tower had quickly become a sanctuary for the teen. It shielded the bitterness Harry had over the people who did not aid in the war, and the regret for those who did.
"I doubt that you can just ignore them Harry." Albus finally said after five hours. The headmaster released the sound barrier around his office and the noise was far louder now than it had been earlier that morning. "They want to see you. And it is almost time for you to give some kind of appearance."
Harry nodded but felt his body shudder. There was so much magic in Hogwarts. It made him noutous now to think how he used to be able to withstand it so easily. Harry Potter looked at the Albus. "I think it is better that no one does find out about my condition."
"The effects of the curse still have not dissipated yet?" Albus asked, but he already knew the answer. Albus finally looked in Harry's direction with out looking directly at Harry.
Harry stood and move away from the headmasters aura that seemed to have calmed him. "I don't believe this curse will ever go away. It is just one more scar Tom gave me." Harry began to cough violently. Hogwarts was becoming too much for him to bare. When he looked up again, his face was ashen. "Tom did sure know what he was doing when he made this curse." Harry's face dropped. "I lost too much trying to remove this. It's better to try and life with it."
"I am sure it is harder to bare the curse with so many wizards and witches feeding it. Of course I am not being much help either being right next to you."
Harry shook his head. "You were always good at making me focus. Right now it is your aura that is protecting me, it seems to be flooding out everything else."
Albus headed for the door. Harry followed suit. They went down the flight of stairs and began their march towards the courtyard where a press conference was about to begin.
Harry closed his eyes and relaxed. He felt the magic radiating from the people outside and it gave him strong urges that he wish he would never have. "I'll be fine, after this pony show I think I am done with the wizarding world anyway." Harry sighed and kept looking strait forward. The headmaster was saddened by the decision. Harry looked at him and felt the need to explain a little more. "Too many things have happened to me Albus. You know well that I have had few joys in life. Many of them are from this world, but hundreds more hardships are from this one as well. I just want to sleep, recover." Harry's voice sounded old and tired.
"I suppose it is for the best. Have you made arrangements then?"
Harry nodded, then said, "I really didn't say good bye to anyone. And I think Susan was expecting to make up with me tonight. God this is going to hurt a lot of people." Harry looked thoughtfully, and then flinched again from the curse.
Albus nodded, "More than you know. You are thinking of your friends not of yourself or the rest of the world. No, I am not saying you are selfish, far from it. Just… it seems as if you have given up living a life at all." The concern in his voice was poorly hidden. He saw Harry mentally prepare himself for the sudden influence of several hundred people staring at him.
Harry exhaled. Harry smiled, the first genuine smile since he was cursed by Voldemort as he died nearly a month ago. "I am not giving up on life Albus. Just this world." Harry kept his smile when he started to move. The boy-who-lived left the entrance to Hogwarts school of Witch Craft and Wizardry with a conviction he did not show a few steps before.
Minister Fudge was still the Minister of Magic. This was even with the fact that he had received a vote of no confidence. The Minister quickly ushered Harry to the podium to make a speech to the press. Harry gave a parting glare to the Minister who backed away quickly from the piercing look.
The press of hundreds of wizarding newspapers and magazines pressed close to their hero. Harry looked at the people below him. Reporters, friends, and people he never even met had come to see the man who slayed Voldemort. Harry snorted at the thought. As if Voldemort was a great beast to be strung up as a trophy. Instead of an twisted man who had to be killed to save the thousands of people who could not save themselves. That's what pained Harry the most when he looked at this crowd. Only a handful of them had been willing to fight against the dark wizards. The ones who refused to fight did not even have the integrity to say that they did not fight. They made up lies and slurs to aid themselves with their careers, to gain friends and dishonor the men and women and children who fought against Voldemort where ever he was.
Harry steeled himself with this knowledge when he started to speak. "Hello, I am glad that so many people have come out and celebrate the end of Voldemorts reign of terror." The whole crowd flinched in a wave of rising shoulders. After they recovered, they all cheered happily. There was another thing Harry hated.
The fact that these seemingly capable wizards allowed themselves to be ruled so easily.
"I am pleased to see that the information of remaining death eaters has been made of public record so that they may be captured and brought to justice." There was another thing he hated of the Wizarding world. Justice was a nonexistent. People who have enough money will simply go free. Regardless of the crimes brought against them. Harry only need to think of Lucius Malfoy to confirm it. The way the government was so corrupt made Harry wonder often what the point of having the minister and his heads of office at all when they do nothing to aid any problems the rest of the people have. Harry thought of the many muggle countries where such government would not be tolerated. But these people seemed perfectly happy to have a corrupt minister, and death eaters who kill for their entertainment. They expect to have some one there to protect them and make the world safe. And it galled Harry to know that it was supposed to be him.
"We have come a long way since the rising of the dark wizards power. We have talented Aurors, and a wonderful headmaster of Hogwarts who was a father to many of us as we grew." There was thunderous applause at that. Harry just wanted to walk away there. He was disgusted of the times greedy men tried to remove Albus from his position because he threatened their power and of the allegations that the newspapers quickly took up as fact.
"With such wonderful aids in fighting the Death Eaters, there was no doubt that we would not win." More cheering. Harry let the last of the empathy he had for these people leave him. They did not want to listen. So many people could be saved. These people would let themselves die had there been no one to try and fight. Harry told them what they wanted to hear and he felt as sick as when he read any lie from the Prophet.
Harry waited for the cheering to die down. In truth Harry had a speech planed about how death eaters where no longer a threat and how he would help hunt them down, that muggle born and pure blooded families being able to work side by side, there will never be a time where dark wizards would roam free again. It was rubbish as far as Harry was concerned…
Harry laughed. He felt the magic surround him grip his heart and gave it a twist. "That is the biggest load of crap I have ever said. I couldn't even keep a straight face." There was silence from the crowd. "I have served my purpose in this life and intend now to live it peacefully… Away from all of you." The silence was painful to Harry's friends. He immediately looked to each one that stood in the crowd.
After over a minute there was a roar of cries from the crowd. Saying things that sounded like pleas to Harry to stay.
"This world is filled with trash." Harry nodded his head to the minister behind him. "Let him lead you hell for all I care." Harry looked over to government officials who were already sending Aurors to arrest him, they were all told to get him away from the podium before he could do more damage. "We were at war, the wizard population droped to a third its size in only twenty years." He turned over to the reporters. He saw Hermione among them smiling a tear threatening to over take her even as she was writing what Harry said word for word. "And when we were faced with extinction, your children still in Hogwarts had to save us." Harry looked beyond the press and saw hundreds of people shift uncomfortably now looking back at their hero. "I have no wish to live among our kind. I have spent my seven years in the wizarding world, and for all the wonders I have seen and evils I have faced, none of them are as worse than the witches and wizards of this nation. You all perpetuate your ignorance, and teach your children to hate one group over another. It sickens me to see that all the hard work I have done, and the lives lost fighting Voldemort go to waste because no one was willing to change, even after the harsh lessons, what does it mean to all the brave witches and wizards who fought and died. What does it mean to all those dead?"
"I am not a great wizard. I was just raised to know what was right and wrong. The real hero's were those who are not standing here today." Harry looked strait to Hermione, then to Ron, then finally he turned to Susan. The one person Harry believed he loved. She smiled at him and nodded in understanding of what he was trying to say. Harry saw three Aurors finally move forward after much yelling by Fudge to silence him. Harry looked at the whole scene sadly. Again people who were not thinking for themselves and blindly follow a greedy man. Harry looked sadly at the three Aurors. They were not enemies to him. "I will be leaving now." The crowd was silent. Harry was expecting something but nodded when no one said anything. "Some day, if things change I might come back. But even I am not immortal. Good day." With that, Harry walked toward the advancing Aurors.
Harry walked slowly towards the three Aurors only to begin to turn into silver light. With a brilliant flash he disappeared into thin air just as he was about to pass the Aurors.
The crowd and the press where in an uproar. Half of the press flocked to find someone to interview. They other half stood reevaluating what their job was.
Hermione Granger , Ronald Weasly and Susan Bones gathered together in front of Albus's office. The press was not allowed access inside Hogwarts. Those four graduates were able to enter, a technicality as they were students until Sept. 1st of the next semester. Albus let them into his office. "Before you all start with your questions. Yes, Harry is indeed gone. And no, I do not know where he went." All three of Harry's best friends stared at their headmaster. The silence was interrupted by Susan's first few tears.
Hermione and Ron just sat there stupidly. Harry had been saying for months that he just wanted to disappear from the world. Though they knew on some level that he was not joking, they didn't think for one moment that he would disappear from them as well. Hermione and Ron finally let the fact sink in.
Harry was indeed gone and left to the muggle world. He left with out any of his friends. The pain of the truth hit harder. Harry has no reason to return. The trio would never see their friend again, and it was killing all three of them. Ron and Hermione hugged Susan. The red head turned blonde felt like her whole life had crumbled around her. Ron knew that Susan was everything to Harry and was amazed that he would just leave her like this. Ron silently cursed Harry for leaving while comforting his friend.
Days… Months…. Years past with no sign of Harry Potter. Thousands of people looked. People were beginning to get used to not having a hero. Students went to school, adults worked and one very old wizard saw a students story that was uncomfortably close to two other tragedies. He looked to the future and knew that he would not be able to help this child. It was then that Albus Dumbledore knew that he had to find Harry Potter.