This story is a second view on what happened to Harry after the war. A different story post Deathly Hallows about the trio and the new things happening to Harry, Hermione and Ron. There will be similarities with my two stories "Harry Potter and the Greatest Truth" and "The Real Potters THE SERIES" because I gave all my love in these two stories, however, I'm sure I can give even more to this one ;)
How feelings are changing when things are clear in your mind and heart and how deep friendship turns to true love. In this story I will try to fill all the gabs JKR left behind her and I'll try to make the pairings as they should be. I will also explore the new facts JKR has announced even after the end of the series like Dumbledore being gay hehe… it's just a challenge for me ;)…
It will start as R-Hr and G-H so I can show how wrong these pairings are. This story is a Harry-Hermione story dedicated to all the true Harmonians… It will be almost 20 chaps long and I hope all of you; anonymous or members to review my work. :)
The story is inspired by Harry's and Hermione's love (or call their connection as you want) for each other and the following songs:
"Anywhere", "Before the Dawn", "My Immortal" and "Lacrymosa" by the Evanescence. "This I promise you" by N'SYNC and "Headlines" by the Spice Girls and some more :)
Disclaimer: I don't own the Characters, only the plot of this story. JKR owns the characters and background information.
Thanks my dear beta reader and friend SwishandFlick31 for her help :)
- CHAPTER ONE -
'He'll be all right,' murmured Ginny.
As Harry looked at her, he lowered his hand absent-mindedly and touched the lighting scar on his forehead. 'I know he will.'
Harry opened his eyes tiredly. He moved his head on the pillow and looked around him. He could hear that the infirmary was full of people, but curtains were surrounding his bed. It'd been a few hours since he'd awoken. A few hours since he had fulfilled his destiny. Some hours before, he had killed. He had taken his revenge for his parents and his own destroyed childhood.
After his, Hermione's and Ron's return in the great hall, Madame Pomfrey had rush them into the infirmary and forced them to drink many potions, especially Harry after her "interrogation" about how he was feeling. After that, she put all of them into beds. If Harry wanted to be honest with himself, he didn't mind. He was exhausted, and sleep would help him start healing his soul after all those years of trying to do the impossible: To destroy Lord Voldemort.
Harry sat up on the bed and tried to reach his glasses, but he didn't have the chance to when someone threw herself on him and hugged him like there was no tomorrow. Because of his reflections, Harry closed his eyes. He thought Hermione was the one hugging him like that, like she always did. When he opened his eyes he realized he was mistaken. Ginny was giving him the bone-crashing hug.
He returned the hug less firmly and Ginny broke it and looked at him, smiling.
'I'm happy you are fine,' Ginny said and pecked his cheek.
Harry nodded his head and spoke. 'I'm happy too. Where is Ron and Hermione?' he asked.
Ginny's smile faded a bit but didn't disappear. 'I will call them. Wait a minute,' she said and left from the curtains.
Harry looked around him again. He remembered the dream he had seen. People were dead around him, people he knew and loved. Remus and Nymphadora and Fred. That dream seemed so odd to him, children and family were the last things he was imagining some hours before, when he learned he was the last Horcrux.
He couldn't remember many details about the dream. Just a few odd names for his and Malfoy's children and Hermione not trusting Ron about his driver's license. He almost didn't notice as Hermione showed up through the curtains. She looked tired and sad but she smiled at Harry when their eyes met.
'Ron is still with his family,' she told him. 'Mrs. Weasley wanted to talk to her kids for awhile. Percy is injured, but he will be fine,' she said and Harry nodded with an ache in his heart. Hermione sat on the edge of his bed, still looking at him.
'How are you feeling?' she asked quietly and Harry looked at her more carefully. He was sure she had been crying. He always tell by the way her face looked after she cried. He wondered how she was feeling. He wasn't sure. Things with Voldemort were over, yes, but what now?
'I don't know,' Harry answered.
Hermione moved closer and hugged him, not very tightly but firmly enough. He closed his eyes and breathed in her scent. The battle was over and he didn't know what he wanted to do from now on. A wave of sadness hit him. So many people were dead. So many families were mourning their losses when the rest of the wizarding world was happy for their freedom. He couldn't think what he wanted now. He realized what he was feeling: fear and emptiness.
'Me either,' Hermione said, pulling away from him. 'I'm scared,' she added and looked at her hands. Harry took them in his; He knew she was feeling the same way as he was.
'We'll find our way Hermione. I'm sure we will,' Harry said, and for the first time that day, he smiled. She returned the smile less happily and looked at him.
'I'm happy we made it, but I don't know where to start now. What to do…' She said and Harry knew exactly what she meant, but before either of them had the chance to talk more, Ron and Ginny showed up. Both the Weasleys looked curiously at the joined hands of Harry and Hermione. She broke their hold quickly and looked at Ginny and Ron. Harry didn't understand why Hermione got panicky for a moment, but didn't wonder any further when Ron spoke.
'How are you, mate?' he asked smiling, his smile never reaching his eyes. His blue, sad eyes. Harry nodded his head.
'Fine, I think,' he said as Hermione stood up and Ginny took her place close to Harry. Ron nodded his head and looked at Hermione for a moment and then back at his best mate. At that moment, Madame Pomfrey and Professor McGonagall showed up and looked at the young people.
'Please, everyone out, the headmistress needs to talk to Mr. Potter,' Madame Pomfrey said as she gestured to Ron, Ginny and Hermione to move outside. The three moved out without complaining and Madame Pomfrey followed after taking Harry's temperature and making sure his magical levels were fine. McGonagall looked at him as she conjured a chair close to Harry's bed.
'First of all, Harry, I want you to know that I'm very proud of you. I fought with Him for a while, and I can only imagine how powerful he was. Well done my boy,' she said and smiled at him, her face tired like everyone's else. Harry nodded his head and murmured a "Thank you." McGonagall continued.
'I wanted to ask you what happened with professor Snape and where Crabbe is. Do you know anything about these two?' she asked and Harry looked away for a moment. Snape, the one person he always believed was an enemy was the one who helped him the most, was the one person who wanted to help him in Lily's memory.
'Crabbe is dead in the room of requirement in the seventh floor and Snape is dead in the Shrinking Shack. I can't say many things right now, but Snape was with us even when he killed Dumbledore. They had planned it together so Snape could stay in the inner circles of Voldemort. He was innocent and not a Death Eater, don't let his memory rot in the mud, please,' Harry answered after a few moments, and McGonagall, even more surprised, nodded.
'Very well,' she said and stood up. She moved to the curtains when she turned and looked at him. 'After the next difficult months, Harry, the school will be open. The previous terms will repeat themselves as Death Eaters were teaching here. And if you want, Hogwarts will be open for you, Harry. You can still be a great Auror, I'm sure. You and your friends deserve a chance at happiness,' she said and left, leaving Harry with a ghost of a smile on his lips.
He had something to do after the war…
Harry, Ron and Hermione spent the rest of their day in the infirmary, not talking a lot as they didn't have many things to say. The curtains were "protecting" them from the prying eyes of others, but they could hear cries and screams when relatives were recognizing their dead relatives. He had also heard about the murderers of the victims: Bellatrix had killed Nymphadora, and Dolohov had killed Remus. Harry wanted to scream and to keep his mouth shut at the same time. He knew some of those screams outside were Andromeda Tonks' when she found out her only daughter was murdered. He also heard a baby's cries and he knew that it must be Teddy Lupin, the orphan of the Lupins. Harry wanted to stand up, to hug Andromeda, to see and hug little Teddy, his Godson, but he couldn't. He wanted to cry out in his pain, his fear, his sorrow. But he couldn't. No tears were escaping his eyes. No screams were escaping his lips. He felt all those emotions and yet empty at the same moment.
Hermione was crying silently in a corner, her body shaking with the power of her sobs. Ron was next to her, rubbing her back. Harry knew them too well, Hermione's crying wasn't only for the dead. She had her breakdown, she was taking out all the things he was feeling and couldn't show.
He felt jealous of those two, of Hermione and her courage to cry and her power to show her sorrow. Of Ron and his power not to destroy everything because of Fred's loss. Harry couldn't believe Fred was dead. The twins were now only George, no more Fred. He was dead, murdered. Harry stood up and moved closer to a window next to his bed. He looked outside. People were moving around, using spells to clean up the puddles of blood here and there. Ginny was there with her mother. Mrs. Weasley wanted all of her family close and only Ron had stayed behind with Harry and Hermione.
Harry didn't know why, but he was half-happy to be only with Hermione and Ron at a moment like this. Only those two knew what it meant to be alone in a tent with Death Eaters after you. Especially Hermione, who was with him the whole time. And then he was feeling half-sad of not having someone to hug him right now. Ginny could be that one, but she didn't know what he had been through, like Ron knew with Hermione or she knew when she hugged him before. Harry felt more jealous of the two, but more cries and screams from the other side of the curtains made him feel that emptiness in his heart again.
The next day was the worst so far. After a day of pain and cries Harry felt ready to burst. People were crying and mourning and he was still unable even to talk to them. Now it was time for the funerals. The infirmary wasn't very full that morning; most of the people were sleeping.
Ron and Hermione were in the Gryffindor common room. Madame Pomfrey had decided to keep Harry in the infirmary for a second night so she could be sure about his health. He moved close to the window again and looked outside. Parents were taking their kids back home like the day before; terrified, sad and angry faces had filled the grounds. People were preparing the graves for the dead while other people were making the chairs for the people who would watch the funerals.
Harry wasn't sure if he wanted to be there. All these people had fallen in a war about him. Fred, Remus and Tonks had fallen for him. Harry wasn't sure he was brave enough to see their dead bodies. To face their relatives: Andromeda, the Weasleys. He was feeling so guilty for all this. Two nights before, he thought he would meet his parents and Sirius again. He thought he would finally find peace, and now, two sad days later, he was ready to attend the funerals of innocent people.
His thoughts were interrupted by a hand on his shoulder. He turned and saw Andromeda Tonks standing in front of him. She was looking very much like her older-dead now- sister Bellatrix, but her features were much more soft and sad. In her arms, Teddy Lupin was sleeping, his head full of soft light blue hair. Harry didn't know what to say to the woman in front of him. She had lost everything in less than six months: her only child, husband, and even her son-in-law. The only thing that was keeping her on her two feet, Harry was quite sure, was the little bundle in her arms.
'I now know how you feel, Harry,' Andromeda said with a broken voice and Harry was sure he heard his heart breaking. They had something in common, they had no families anymore. 'But I have Teddy and you have your friends.' She added and Harry knew she was right.
'I just wanted to tell you that my house is always open to you. Remus and Dora had told me how good of a man you are and I want Teddy to have his Godfather close to him,' Andromeda said and Harry nodded his head as he looked at the small baby in the woman's hands.
'Can… can I hold him?' Harry almost whispered. He hadn't hugged a child in his life before, but he wanted to show, even without words, his feelings for this little baby. Andromeda smiled sadly and nodded. She handed him the baby carefully and Harry felt a small shot of light warming his heart. The baby was very beautiful and peaceful, not knowing that some hours before he had lost both his parents. The small light in Harry's soul died with that thought. But again, he couldn't cry. He couldn't cry at the sight of his own life in that baby.
Teddy's parents had to be with him now and he had to be with his up there. Things hadn't turned like that. Harry gave the baby back to Andromeda and she took the little boy and smiled at Harry, placing her hand on his shoulder again.
'Time will heal you, Harry, believe me. Time and the people who know good enough to heal you will help.' Andromeda said and turned around, ready to leave.
'Thanks,' Harry almost croaked and Andromeda looked at him. "For understanding," he continued, "and not like I'm the hero of the universe,' Harry said and Andromeda smiled and looked back at her grandchild as she started walking again.
Harry looked around him again. He hadn't moved out of the infirmary and wondered how the rest of the building was. The last time he remembered paintings, many statues and even parts of walls had been destroyed. He remembered the fight. He closed his eyes and saw scenes of blood and pain repeating themselves behind his eyelids. He opened his eyes again, remembering something very important.
'Kreacher!' Harry called. A loud crack was heard and the elf was right in front of him.
'Master Harry!' the elf exclaimed and made a low bow. The fake Horcrux hit the stone floor. One of the elf's ears was missing.
'Are you OK, Kreacher?' Harry asked, not knowing what else to say. Kreacher wasn't Dobby, but the old house-elf had fought like a true hero two days ago.
'Kreacher is fine sir,' Kreacher answered and made another bow. Harry nodded; Kreacher wasn't the only house-elf he knew.
'Do you know about a house-elf named Winky, Kreacher?' Harry asked, curious about where the small—usually drunk—elf was now.
Kreacher looked at Harry for a moment and then lowered his eyes. 'The elf named Winky is dead sir. She died during the battle,' Kreacher said and Harry just nodded, feeling pity for the small elf. He made a mental note not to talk to Hermione about that. Harry looked at Kreacher again.
'OK, Kreacher, you can return in the kitchens, I will ask of the Headmistress to send Order Members to check the house so you can return the sooner possible in Grimmauld. Well done for your leadership with the rest of the elves,' Harry said and the elf smiled at his master for the first time in the two years they had known each other.
'Thank you, sir,' Kreacher said and with a loud crack, he had left the infirmary. Harry had Grimmauld to return if he wanted to. But did he want something like that? Did he want to return in the second prison of Sirius? He wasn't sure he could face that old portrait again. He sighed heavily as steps could be heard from outside the infirmary's door. The door opened and Hermione, Ron and Ginny showed up, all of them in their Hogwarts' uniforms. Harry looked at them, a bit surprised. He hadn't seen Ron, Hermione or himself in those uniforms for quite a long time.
'We didn't have other clothes to wear so house-elves brought the uniforms for us,' Hermione said. Harry nodded and looked at the pile of clothes at the edge of his bed. Without saying a word he pulled the curtains around his bed closed and dressed in his own uniform. After a few minutes the four moved out of the infirmary to the Great Hall. Many portraits were back to normal. The Great Hall was again as Harry knew it, but this time black flags were hugging from the cloudy ceiling. It showed the mood of the day. Of the week. Of forever, Harry thought.
Harry sat with Hermione, Ron and Ginny at the Gryffindor table. He had missed this place. Only a few students were still around the tables. Many parents had taken their kids two days after the battle. Harry looked around. His home for six years had become the place where he had fulfilled his destiny and killed his enemy.
More people entered the hall: adults crying with small kids in their hands; relatives of dead students. Andromeda sat at the Ravenclaw table with Teddy. She smiled at Harry from afar and he returned the smile as much as he could. Harry's gaze moved from the woman with the baby to a blond girl who was approaching them smiling. Her lips had a deep scratch, but she didn't seem to care as she sat close to the four.
'Good Morning,' Luna said and smiled at the four people.
'Hello, Luna, how are you?' Hermione asked as the two Weasleys were too sad about Fred to talk, and Harry wasn't in the mood to open his mouth.
'I'm fine, thank you. I'm sad about the families. I have lost my mother and I know what loss means,' Luna said with her dreamy voice and the four stared at her and how easily she was talking about the people who had lost their lives. 'Time will help us to move on,' Luna added and everyone nodded their heads agreeing. Everyone, one by one, started leaving the Great Hall and moving outside. Without speaking too much, the five people moved outside and started for the place with the chairs. They found some seats and sat down in silence.
After everyone was seated and silent many people from the ministry started walking, carrying the dead. Four people for every fallen fighter. Harry looked at the line the people with the open coffins were making. The first was Snape's. Through spells and charms the dead man looked fine, just sleeping. No one but Harry could guess what Naginni had done to him. Next was Collin Creevy. The small coffin with the even smaller young student inside was proof that Death never chose. It just took innocent lives.
There were several other bodies and then Remus and right behind him Nymphadora. Both of them seemed like they were sleeping. But Harry knew, they were gone forever. After some more dead people, Fred came in Harry's view; the dead twin was looking peaceful with his eyes closed. Harry's arm slipped around Ginny's shoulders as she started crying after two days of suppressing her feelings. The same happened with Hermione and Ron, Hermione was the one rubbing Ron's back while the younger Weasley boy was crying his heart out. Harry couldn't handle all this; he closed his eyes and wished to Merlin that his eyes would fill with tears, but nothing came. No tears, no sob. When he opened his eyes again he saw Hermione looking at him. She didn't have the chance to say anything, as McGonagall stood up and looked at the people in the chairs.
The headmistress started saying things about Snape and then the rest, but Harry didn't pay attention. He looked around him: people were crying, mothers were hiding their heads in their hands. Brothers, sisters, parents and friends were dead. Harry looked at the coffins again. Each one above the dead person's grave. Harry looked at Tonks first. She died with her hair a bright purple color, she was probably too ecstatic during her fight with Bellatrix to change her hair's color. She died as a true Metamorphmagus.
Harry then looked at Remus, his father's friend was far more pale than the rest of the lost ones. Harry knew now, all the Marauders were gone, only Teddy and himself were left. Harry took a deep breath and looked at the alive people: he spotted Andromeda. She was looking blandly at her daughter's dead body, probably realizing she was alone now, only with her grandchild. Andromeda closed her eyes and then moved her head back and opened them again, looking at the skies with tears running down her cheeks.
Harry wanted to leave from there. He wanted to be somewhere else, anywhereelse. He didn't care. He just needed to leave. His wish came true when he realized everyone was standing up. A huge white light showed beneath the waters of the lake and a dull song started being heard from the lake. The merpeople were probably mourning for the human dead.
The people who were keeping the coffins closed them and lowered them into the graves. There were flashes of color and the graves were filled with dirt by magic. Everyone started walking around. Harry knew where he wanted to go. He started moving around the lake and sat underneath the tree he had sat under a year ago, right after Dumbledore's funeral. After several minutes Ginny showed up. Harry wanted to be alone at the moment but he knew she needed someone next to her as Ron had Hermione with him. She sat next to him and looked at the lake.
'I missed you,' Ginny said and Harry looked at her. She had changed a bit, her face was more mature now, harder, tired.
'I missed you too,' Harry said feeling like someone else was speaking with his voice. He looked at the lake again.
'The ministry is trying to catch the missing Death Eaters. The Malfoys will be in trial very soon, dad said. The ministry needs to show people that everything will be back on track. Mom wants you and Hermione to come to the Burrow,' Ginny said and Harry didn't look at her again. He knew Mrs. Weasley would want something like that when neither he nor Hermione had somewhere else to go. But he also knew he didn't want to be there. The Burrow was always a place very close to Harry's heart, but he was feeling guilty for Fred's death when he was close to Fred's family. How could he possibly live in the same house with this family now?
'I know you might feel uncomfortable, but Grimmauld doesn't seem a better option…' Ginny said and looked at him, seeking his gaze.
'What are you going to do with school?' Harry asked, wanting to change the subject, avoiding her pained eyes. He heard Ginny sighing as she turned her head at the lake's direction again.
'I'll repeat my sixth year here and then I will move on to my seventh. McGonagall said people have to repeat the term so they can be decently educated without Death Eaters as teachers…' Ginny replied and stood up. 'I guess you want to be alone,' she said and started walking away.
Harry wasn't sure if he wanted to tell her to stay. He didn't want to hurt her but he needed his peace for now. Snogging or looking at dots wasn't going to help him right now. He wasn't sure if all this emptiness would leave his heart ever again, or if he had to learn to live with it, but he was surprised that Ginny's close presence, did nothing to help soothe him. Why was he feeling empty, even though the girl he supposedly wanted had been sitting right next to him?