Chapter Fifteen—The Next Greatest Adventure
A/N: Final Chapter. There is no sequel guys, sorry.
"Do you, Harry James Evans-Potter take Ginerva Weasley to be your lawfully wedded wife?" asked the priest. Harry smiled, looking at Ginny.
"I do," Harry said.
"And do you, Ginerva Weasley, take Harry James Evans-Potter to be your lawfully wedded husband?" Ginny smiled right back at Harry.
"I do," she said.
"Then by the power invested in me, I pronounce you Husband and Wife. You may now kiss the bride," the priest said, shutting his little book and leaving the altar as they kissed and the audience cheered enthusiastically. They walked down the aisle, Harry smiling all the while.
Their wedding reception was fantastic of course. Harry found himself on a cloud most of the night. People were constantly coming up to congratulate them. Even Ron and a pregnant Hermione came up to give them hugs. Hermione was in tears—Ron was simply beaming. He remembered just how much he loved his friends in that moment. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley came up to congratulate them as well. They had been like parents to Harry before he met his real father, and now they were his parents as well. Mrs. Weasley, like Hermione was in tears, and Mr. Weasley was in a similar mood to Ron's. His Father approached him, smiling and he had tears in his eyes.
"I'm so proud of you, Harry," he said. Harry smiled. It was hard to believe that three years ago he had hated this man beyond belief.
"I love you, Dad," he said simply, and the two men embraced earnestly. Sirius came up to Harry and ruffle his hair.
"That's my Mini-James. Marrying a redhead," Sirius teased. Harry grinned at him.
"That's right," Harry said. "Potter men just have good taste in women." Ginny laughed.
"Oh, I don't know. There was that thing with Cho," Ginny said slyly. Harry grinned at her.
"Don't remind me," he said with a laugh. Everybody smiled. Remus came up and offered his congratulations, as did a number of other people later. Harry took Ginny out onto the dance floor and they danced most of the night away. Harry couldn't count how many times that night he said "I love you". Ginny couldn't either. They were both stuck in newly wed bliss.
"Do you remember when Lavender and Dean got married?" Ginny asked him. Harry murmured that he did. Yes, that had been a surprise most certainly. They had married and not long after Lavender was pregnant. There was a baby boom after the end of the war, with lots of little wizards and witches being born in the Pax Romana. Harry and Ginny both secretly hoped that they would have a baby of their own soon. Harry, having never had a sibling always wondered what it would be like to have his own, large family, and Ginny, coming from a large family herself, wanted a big one as well (though perhaps not quite so large).
After the defeat of Voldemort everything was at peace. James and Harry had gone back to that awful lake, and, since the spells had been taken from the bodies when Voldemort had died, they drained the lake, did the painstaking work of identifying the bodies and gave them all proper funerals. They found Dumbledore's body and gave him the grandest funeral of all. Harry could have sworn that all of the wizarding world had attended the funeral. It could be compared to perhaps the death of a pope. Fawkes had died for good at the funeral, but it had left a baby Phoenix behind, which had dubbed itself Harry's. Harry had named it Talon and it hardly ever left him alone. Harry was grateful for it's companionship. Hedwig was, too.
Dumbledore had a permanent white tomb on Hogwarts grounds that Harry frequently visited. He also frequented Dumbledore's portrait, just to talk to him, even though the portrait Dumbledore had warned him that, like the mirror of erised, what he saw and heard was a magical illusion. Harry understood and accepted that, but still talked to him anyway. After all, the portrait still gave good counsel, even if it was just a painting.
For the first time in fifty years, a Defense teacher held a job for two years in a row. Sirius went back to teaching while James went back to being an Auror. It appeared that the curse on the defense teachers had been lifted. Remus continued his work as Care of the Magical Creatures teacher for Hogwarts. All was as it should be at the school.
Though Harry hadn't really needed it, he went back to school for his last year at Hogwarts, graduating at the same time as Ginny. Afterwards they had gotten engaged and were married the following September in Hogwarts' own Great Hall.
Professor McGonagall continued to be Deputy Headmistress for Hogwarts and was doing increasingly better. Appearently it is easier to manage a school in times of peace than in times of war (even though the students are more likely to pull pranks). The sorting hat returned to its normal song, and the Headmistress had taken the tradition of singing the school song again (though, being the smart woman that she was, she gave it a set tune). The world couldn't be more at peace and happy.
Harry sat back down at a table with his wife to cut the wedding cake. It was very good cake, made by Dobby himself. Harry smiled as he thought of the little elf. He had married Winky, and he couldn't help but notice that Winky had become a much happier creature after that.
As to the Ministry itself, it was as stupid as ever, but at least Scrimgeour had some sense and solved some of the problems of the wizarding world. Mr. Weasley even got a promotion and a much-deserved and much needed raise. Harry couldn't help but smile when he thought of how surprised Mr. Weasley had been. Percy had long since been talking to them again, and had rejoined the side of the light as opposed to the side of the Ministry. He had married Penelope Clearwater, and they had one child, a little girl named Cynthia. Harry was glad that the Weasley family was all together again.
Harry saw a Prophet reporter approach him, but luckily it was a friendly face—Parvati Patil.
"Hi Harry! Hi Ginny! Congratulations on your wedding!" she said. Harry and Ginny smiled and said their thanks. "Can I just ask you guys a question for The Daily Prophet?" At Harry's nod she continued, "So, Mr. Evans-Potter, now that all of your grand adventures are over and you're married, what's next? Won't life be boring?" Harry just smiled at her.
"You know, a wise man once told me a piece of advice. He said 'to the organized mind, death is but the next greatest adventure.' You know, I agree with him on that. I plan to live out my life to its fullest and wait for my next greatest adventure, be it death or something else. Let me tell you Padma, life is nothing to be wasted. Life is to love and be loved, and that in itself is the next greatest adventure."