Harry Potter and the Soul of the Serpent
Standard Disclaimers Apply
A/N: Anime Monster- As to your query, I actually wrote the last chapter before writing HBP, so it was just a coincidence.
Thankyou so much to all the people who reviewed! For those who asked, I do intend to write a Harry/Katie story, but I don't know when. I actually have three other stories going at the moment but I should be able to post the first chapter very soon.
Harry Potter was buried facing the setting sun.
The funeral that morning had been one of the worst Albus Dumbledore had ever attended.
Witches and wizards, old and young, had flocked to Hogwarts to farewell the saviour of their world. The grounds had never been so full. The wreaths laid around the grave were a reminder of the amount of people in debt to Harry Potter, for they were in their thousands.
The service was short, as those close to Harry knew he would have wanted it. He had never liked the spotlight.
Few people spoke to the masses gathered that day, about who Harry Potter had been. It would have been, they thought, an insult to his memory, a breach of the privacy he so surely deserved.
Or maybe, it was because few knew the real Harry Potter.
Whatever the reason, Dumbledore thought, Harry Potter would forever be shrouded in more mystery than he ever had been. None yet knew exactly what had happened, and Dumbledore knew that the one who could fully explain Harry's death was the one standing quietly at the back of the room they were now in.
There was silent.
Tear stained and sombre faces sat wherever they could, the rest standing silently.
Albus Dumbledore cleared his throat quietly, although it was not necessary. He looked around at the gathered people.
The Weasley family sat closest to his desk, accompanied by Hermione Granger. Molly Weasley sobbed openly onto her husband shoulder, who looked utterly lost.
Hermione sat next to Ron, clutching his hand so tightly it had turned white, but Ron did not notice. He was staring as though transfixed at the floor, almost like he didn't believe that this was reality. The twins had identical expressions of sadness on their faces, and their sister, Ginny wept silently. The three oldest Weasley brothers stood next to them, Bill resting his hand on Ron's shoulder.
Around the room sat Neville Longbottom, his face shocked; Remus Lupin, his greying head in his hands; Rubeus Hagrid, who was, for once, not howling in despair, for it seemed he was beyond this; and, to the surprise of all present, Draco Malfoy, who looked as though he would rather be somewhere else. Rightfully so, he was to have a trial in the coming weeks, however circumstance required his presence.
Standing behind these people, were Dobby the house-elf, who Dumbledore could not see, but could hear squeaking quietly; Andromeda Tonks, who looked unusually morose; Minerva McGonnagal, whose red-rimmed eyes were the only sign that she had been crying; Luna Lovegood, who looked as dream-like as usual; and there, in the back corner, clasping his daughter's hand tightly, was a pale Severus Snape.
They all looked at him expectantly, hopeful for the chance that this would all end soon.
"We are here," Dumbledore began quietly, "to read the will of Harry Potter. But before we begin, I must read a letter that Harry wrote, to be read to all of you."
He cleared his throat again, his eyes twinkling suspiciously.
"To all whom I have ever cared for, and some I haven't.
To make a rather clichéd statement, if you are reading this, then it means I am dead. I must tell you, that I knew I would die the night Voldemort did. I will not say here why, but I believe Professor Snape knows enough to fill in the gaps, and I ask him, please, to do this for me.
I regret the time I lost while I was with you all. I regret what I was not able to do. I regret some of the things I did.
But I am glad to go. I do not know where I will go, when I die. I have murdered, though I do not know, because of who I killed, if this is enough to condemn me. The spell I used was unusual. Due to its origin, I doubt it has been used much, if at all, before this time. Therefore, I cannot say what will happen to my soul after I die.
All I can say now to you, is this. I died knowing that you would all be safe, for I am sure that this spell will not fail.
Please do not be upset; there is nothing you could have done, because I was determined to end this. Please do not feel guilty. I know many of you do, and I ask you not to. You could not have known what happened, and you believed only what you heard me say.
I thank you all for what you gave me while I was with you. I will miss you.
With all my love,
Sniffles were heard throughout the room, and Snape's scowl became deeper than anyone would have thought was humanly possible.
Dumbledore allowed them but a moment before he continued.
"Now, I believe Harry wrote individual notes to each of you, along with the packages he separated his belongings into-"
"Albus," Mrs Weasley interrupted. "Are you saying that he did all this before he went to- to V-Voldemort? He must have known he was going to die!" she said in a whisper.
Dumbledore nodded gravely.
"I believe he did, however, I think it is time we heard Severus' story." He looked at Snape.
Snape scowled even more before relenting.
"Very well, if I must. I do not know everything, however…on the numerous occasions we talked, he let things slip- whether by accident or not I do not know. He told me on one occasion, quite seriously, that he knew he was going to die when he killed the Dark Lord. I told him he was wallowing in self-pity, but after I considered the rest of what he told me, I changed my opinion somewhat."
He paused for a moment, thinking.
"He told me that the night Voldemort attacked him as a child, Voldemort accidentally transferred some of his sold into Harry. He said you knew this, Albus," said Snape, glancing at Dumbledore.
Dumbledore bowed his head.
"I had suspected it," he said quietly, to a number of shocked gasps. "It is, I believe, how Harry came to have some of his darker talents and, most importantly, his connection with Voldemort."
"Yes, well, at this stage I think he must have already found the spell that he was going to use, because he seemed certain that he would also perish when he used it against the Dark Lord. I cannot be sure why, though I rather believe it is because Voldemort's soul had moulded with Harry's to a degree, maybe even become a part of Harry's. When Harry destroyed Voldemort's soul, he effectively destroyed his own."
Lupin hung his head in his hands again and spoke softly.
"He did that for us! After all he'd been through, after all we'd done to him, and he still did it."
"It would have caused him great pain. Voldemort said himself, that to have your soul ripped from your body is a pain beyond all others. I cannot imagine…"
The room remained in silence after Snape's words.
I saw it, thought Snape. I saw how much pain he was in. I saw him smile.
"He was happy," he said quietly, and they turned once again to look at him. "I saw him cast the spell. He was in pain, but he was happy."
At the risk of sounding rude, I must thank you for being such a good liar. Forgive me if I sound ungrateful, but it undoubtedly you whom I owe for the few years of relative peace I had at Hogwarts. Had you told me everything you knew sooner, I do not hesitate to believe that I would have been unhappy at a much earlier age.
You have also guided me for many years, and I must thank you for this as well.
For this, I leave you one of my closest possessions. I know it will mean something to you, and it, more than anything in the magical world, was a part of me. Please know that it was hard for me to decide this, and I doubt you would find a good use for many of my other belongings.
Dumbledore looked at the small package on his desk and unwrapped it. It was a wand.
To Mr and Mrs Weasley,
All I can say to you is thankyou. You showed me love and acceptance that no one had before. I guess my parents did, but I cannot remember. If I had one more chance at life again, I would choose to live it with you. You have, forever, my appreciation, my gratitude, and my love.
To you, I bequeath the Potter estate. You, more than any, deserve it. I admire you for not bowing to those who appeared stronger than you, and for realising the true value of a person.
To you I leave my Invisibility cloak, and one bit of advice. Do not be afraid to bend the rules sometimes because, although I know there is a sense of fulfilment that can come from doing the right thing, nothing worth having ever comes without risks. I valued your friendship more than I can ever say, and I am sorry that we could not continue it over the past year.
I also leave you my books- I know you more than anyone would appreciate them.
always uphold your beliefs, as you have shown me repeatedly that this
is something you do well, and I know you will go on to do great
With all my love,
I will always remember you as the first friend I ever had. You have always stuck by me, and for that, I will never forget you.
Always be confident in yourself, because you have more talent than you are aware of.
I leave you my Firebolt; may it help you on your way to greatness. I know you always loved a good joke. I leave you the Marauders Map in the hope that you will pull many pranks on my behalf.
And, as a last request, I ask that you pull your head out from you know where, and see what is plainly in front of you. I know you know what I am talking about. Hermione needs someone in the magical world.
I guess you knew me better than almost anyone, Ron, and I am glad that if I had anyone who could know me that well, that it was someone as good and decent as you.
I treasured our time together. I wish we had had more, so that we could have known each other better. I leave you Hedwig, not only because she seemed quite attached to you, but because you have a quiet way about you that reminds me somewhat of her. I know it sounds strange, but believe me when I say this. You were a wonderful person, and are a wonderful, talented witch.
Please make sure Ron is okay.
To Gred and Forge,
May you always be the ones that make the world a better place.
Whether you know it or not, I always looked forward to seeing you, and I thank you for being able, always, to make me laugh.
I leave you Grimmauld Place, because I know there are things there that only you two will be able to use to your advantage. I only ask you that you allow Remus Lupin to take whatever he wants, as he feels a deep remorse for Sirius' passing.
Always keep smiling,
I ask that you make amends with your family. I know better than most that pride can lead to bad things.
I did not know you well, yet you always showed me kindness. I leave you my model of the Hungarian Horntail, as a memory of what time we did have together.
You have always shown me kindness. Thankyou. I regret not being able to see you and Fleur get married. Good luck.
You were always different, and I tell you now that that is nothing to be ashamed of. Thankyou for always showing me acceptance, without asking for anything in return. You deserve more than I can give you, however I can only leave you with the knowledge that you will go on to do amazing things for the better of the wizarding world. I have faith in you.
I leave you with the most accurate record I have of my life- my thoughts. I think they would mean more to you than anything else I can give you.
I valued your unassuming friendship during the short time we knew each other, and I can say no more than that.
May you now have the chance to get to know your father as I never did.
To Professor McGonnagal,
I thankyou for the support you gave me throughout my time at Hogwarts. I leave you the Potter house in northern Scotland in return.
In all the time I knew you I admired who you were. You taught me the value of not judging people, and for this I thank you. You have always believed in me and that meant so much. I leave you this book, which recently came into my possession. I know it will suit your interests. I also leave you Buckbeak, whom Sirius left me.
I always appreciated your sense of humour. It helped me through some tough times. I know you were just as upset as I at Sirius' passing, yet you still helped me. In recognition, I leave you a mansion in southern France, which belonged to Sirius. He told me once that he had loved it, and I know you will to.
Thnyou for all you have done for me.
I have so much I want to say to you, but I do not have the time here. Maybe if I see you again, one day, I will tell you. Briefly though, I will just say that your friendship meant everything to me, and not just because you were a link to my father. You always showed me trust and friendship, and even though you have not had the best life, you always tried to make mine better. I know you loved Sirius as much as I did. I leave you the Black estate, with the exception of two properties.
I also give you a personal gift. I would have given it to you sooner, but I had little time. I found it somewhere, I cannot say where, but I know you will find it useful. It is my hope that Professor Snape will help you with it.
I wish you the best of luck in the future.
I would like to tell you that I know you have more worth than everyone tells you you do.
I have met your parents- I did not tell you this before- and I know you would have made them proud. I always envied you, Neville. This may seem strange, but you do not know how close you came to being in my position. There were many occasions when I wished I could be you.
You have a wonderful talent, Neville. You have the ability to nurture and care for any living thing, and this is a wonderful strength nad a virtue that many do not have. Do not be afraid to use it.
I leave you the property that was owned by my parent sin Godric's Hollow. I have heard it is very nice there.
You helped me on many occasions and always showed absolute trust in me. I really have nothing to give you that would be of much value to you, however I leave you the entirety of my wardrobe. I trust you will enjoy it.
We never did get along, and I doubt we ever would have. I can only tell you that at times, I did believe you had the potential to be a different person from your father. I believe you still can. You do not have to follow in his footsteps to uphold your honour and values.
Please believe this.
I found this letter the hardest to write.
I regret our relationship over my years at Hogwarts, and that, really, is the best I can say. I am sorry. I want you to know that even though I never liked you, you always had my respect. I hope you can now live your life as you have always wanted to, without unwanted burdens.
I leave you only two things. The first is a potion, and used in conjunction with a spell, it will cure Remus Lupin's unfortunate problem. Please help him.
The second thing I give to you is the only one of my possessions that you would find any use for.
The Chamber of Secrets holds many great things. I know you will appreciate them.
Snape looked down at the scroll and the small wrapped object on the small table next to him. Slowly he pulled the paper off of the object. In his hand, was a small pendant in the shape of a snake, with glittering eyes.
He would never forget Harry Potter.
A/N: The real end! I am so glad to finish this, and apologize if this chapter sounded rushed. Hope you enjoyed it!