Here, as a reward for the truly stunning number of reviews I've gotten for my last two drabbles (coughnonecough)... just kidding -. In any case, here's another little drabble. The title "Rose" is from Shakespeare's brilliant quote, "What's in a name? That which we call a rose / By any other name would smell as sweet." In Romeo and Juliet, Act 2, Scene 2.

Speaking of which, I own neither that nor Harry Potter. Bummer.

Names are from assorted baby name sites, as well as Harry Potter name meaning sites, including http/ www. /cookarama/ namemean.html, http/ www. babynames. com, and http/ www. babynamesworld. com/

To my knowledge, all name meanings listed in the fic below are true.

Enjoy! -

What's in a name, really? It's something you know about a person when you first meet them, pretty much the first thing you know about them. So… what do you think it means?

Do you think a lot of parents search through books and history, looking for the perfect name for their child? How could they choose the perfect name? No one can really know that their child is destined for.

So… does that mean that we all just have random words that we answer to?

Just think about it… I didn't even know my name until just before school.. I had no use for one – "Boy" worked just fine. I knew what they meant. It was just a word, but it functioned as a name.

Some names are just the opposite – I mean, names that function as words. "Machiavellian" comes to mind. "Hitler" has become synonymous with "tyranny" and "prejudice", and countless other words. A word, a definition; not a name.

Mine has as well. "Harry" now translates, somehow, as "Hero".

That's not really what "Harry" means. It means "soldier" in Old English. Fitting, yes… but not "hero". I'm just one of them, just one of the faceless soldiers fighting for whichever side got to me first.

"Voldemort" is just a word as well. His real name is Tom – Greek for "a twin". He doesn't even have a twin, as far as I know. The point is, he changed his name. He changed his destiny. He changed the way people look at him. He didn't choose a new name; he created one from the ashes of the old. "Voldemort" – "Vol de mort", "Flight of Death" in French; not a snake, as he proclaims, but a bird... Just a name. Just a word. Just a label.

Let's explore further, shall we?

"Albus Dumbledore". White Bumblebee. Hardly an intimidating name, no? So fitting, though. Did his parents know how he'd come to be? No. It was just a twist of fate. Perhaps he changed his name as well.

"Severus Snape". Latin for "strict" and "severe", and yet also a name of kings and saints. A spy for the light, risking his life day in and day out for the chance that this life might go on.

"Lucius" for "light", the side he turned not to. And yet, also Lucifer, the angel who lost his place in heaven, and changed his word to "Satan".

"Draco" for a dragon of stars, a far off light to come. And yet, years pass before we know it's gone.

"Ronald" for "giver of advice" – something he rarely does. A loyal friend, but a follower, not a leader.

"Hermione" for "earth", the one that keeps us grounded.

"Alastor" for "protector of humankind", an Auror and a warrior.

"Sirius" for the Dogstar, a far-off, brilliant light in the darkness, gone before we know it. Who knew he'd become a dog himself?

The there's "Cedric" for a "chief", killed before the soldier.

"Amos" for "troubled", a prediction come unluckily true.

And the houses, as well – "Gryffindor" from "griffin", a mixing of unlike parts, and a house of like-minded people. "Slytherin" for a palace of snakes, slithering through alliance and war. Out of sight, but much more dangerous for it, and the cleverest of us all. "Hufflepuff", under "Helga", for bravery, not loyalty. And "Ravenclaw", the herald of death and the searcher of treasure.

All these names, just words. A patchwork of random meanings, some ironic, some fitting, but none intentional but for those changed.

Our name only truly fits us if we make it ourselves, and yet even then it's tainted by our own preconceptions.

Just a name, just a meaning, just a word. A set of borrowed clothes, that can be changed at will.

So I ask yet again – what's in a name?

Once you know one's name… do you really know anything more about them than you did when you started?