A few of you have asked if this will be about the next generation. I'll write one like that eventually, but right now I feel obliged to focus on the current characters. Their stories aren't over yet.

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By the time the celebrations ended--which wasn't until after dinner--everyone was even more tired than they had been before all the partying. Even Draco--who is known in Slytherin as the King of All-Nighters--leaned against a wall for a minute and fell asleep. People from all four Houses noticed this halfway through dinner.

"Poor guy," Luna said.

"Yeah," Ginny agreed.

"Guess surviving an AK takes a lot out of you."

"How'd he do that, anyway?"

I shrugged. "Think I should wake him up?"

"Well, if you do, tell him we've got room in Ravenclaw." (I had mentioned, off-handedly, that even though most of my House had joined the fight against Phil, I was dreading returning to Slytherin.)

"Gryffindor's open, too, if he'd rather stay there."

"Same with Hufflepuff. 'Course, if he'd rather head back to Slytherin, that's fine too."

I grinned, went over to him, and shook his shoulder. "Huh?"

"You fell asleep."

"Yeah...guess I did."

I smiled as I told him the news. "Seems you're pretty popular. Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Gryffindor all invited you to stay there for the night."


"Yeah. So...where do you want to stay?"

He sighed. "I don't know...I'm too tired to pick one. You pick one."

"Why me?"

"'Cause you're still concious."

"Fine. How...about...Gryffindor?" I didn't pick it at random. I picked the House that I thought would break the most school records if a Slytherin stayed there, and Gryffindor won by a landslide.

"All right. Gryffindor, then."

When I told them, all the Gryffindors looked smug while the Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs looked disappointed.

"You can stay in Gryffindor too, if you want."

"All right. Thanks." 'Thanks' didn't seem strong enough to cover it, but I guess it was the best I could do. After all, what do you say when the House that, for the past eleven centuries, has made a point to show how much it hates your House, invites you to stay there for the night?

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Gryffindor's common room is REALLY nice.

Not to say the other three Houses' common rooms aren't, but when I first got to Gryffindor Tower, I couldn't help being impressed. The walls are covered in tapestries, soft rugs are on the floor, and by the fireplace there are dozens of squashy armchairs. The beds were nice, too--like the ones in Slytherin, only red.

Needless to say, I liked it.

Surprisingly, I slept without any nightmares. I guess I was too tired to dream. The real nightmare began when we all woke up and Theo and I went down to the hospital wing to check on Millicent.