A/N: I'm going to put in a shameless plug for myself here, because ever since the Harry Potter fandom started getting ridiculously overcrowded, stories get covered up before more than two people read them.  SO....if you read this, and like it, go read my other stuff!  Actually, you probably won't like this, it's not one of my better works, I just wrote it because I haven't written anything in ages and I'm getting terribly antsy with writer's block.  So good read my other stuff that I wrote when I actually had inspiration.  *cheesy, fake grin* Come on....you know you want to....okay, fine, maybe you don't, but if you're ever bored and have nothing else to do, come back to me, all right?  Good.  Songfic time! Oh, the song, "Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again", is from Phantom of the Opera. Needless to say, I dun own that...or any of the Harry Potter characters, for that matter....

You were once my one companion
You were all that mattered
You were once a friend and father
Then my world was shattered

I'm still struggling with the concept of being without him.  It was Hell on Earth for me when Albus Dumbledore died.  No one ever really expected him to be gone, and so it came as a huge shock to many when The Daily Prophet headlines announced his death to the entire wizarding world.  Many said that he had been ill for a long time, and was just holding on to see Harry Potter defeat the Dark Lord.  It does seem a little coincidental that he only lasted five weeks after Harry's victory, but I know for a fact that Albus wasn't the least bit ill.  He finally just got old enough to pass on.  One of the last things he said to me was, "Dying is just moving on.  It's just another step on the ladder!"  I think he said those words partly to comfort me, but to tell the truth it didn't do much good.  I'm still lost without him.  All these years, he was my mentor.  My one true friend.  And suddenly he's gone.

Wishing you were somehow here again
Wishing you were somehow near
Sometimes it seemed if I just dreamed
Somehow you would be here

Wishing I could hear your voice again
Knowing that I never would
Dreaming of you won't help me to do
All that you dreamed I could

I'm at least thankful that he chose to pass at the end of term and not the beginning.  I honestly don't think I could have handled things if it had been halfway through August or anything like that.  Weeks after his death, I still dream that he's back in his office, and that everything's back the way it should be.....only to awake and find myself thrust into a position that I should have been prepared to take on years earlier.  All these years, I've been a confident, mature woman, able to handle any hardship that comes along.  But when Albus died, I realized that he was my backbone.  He was the source from which my strength derived.  With him gone, I've suddenly become a lost little girl, searching frantically for a hand to cling to.  But no one is there.  They've all assumed I'm fine, assumed I need no help.  They comfort me, of course....they know I was close to Albus.  Still, they don't really help me.  I'm left alone with a thousand things to sort out.  I've been thrust to the top of the ladder and can only stand there teetering, trying desperately to balance, with nothing above me to steady myself with.  All I have to cling to is a headstone.

Passing bells and sculpted angels
Cold and monumental
Seem for you the wrong companions
You were warm and gentle

They put up a memorial for him.  Of course they did; he was arguably the greatest wizard that ever lived, and it's only fitting that he be given a memorial.  It doesn't really seem to reflect him, though.  It's fancy and expensive, but that's about it.  I'm glad they didn't want to bury him like that.  No, he left strict instructions to be laid to rest in the English countryside, amid wildflowers and grazing sheep. That's where I visit when I feel like I need his inspiration. It suits him.  If he were here, he'd be happy to know he's out in nature.  If he were here....

Wishing you were somehow here again
Knowing we must say good-bye
Try to forgive, teach me to live
Give me the strength to try

I can't help but laugh every time I read the inscription on his headstone.  Not the memorial one, of course.  Someone wrote a bunch of lacy, flowery speech for that.  On his real headstone, the only words besides the standard name and dates are "Nitwit!  Blubber!  Oddment!  Tweak!"  As brilliant and powerful as he was, he was really a very simple man, amused by little things and still able to grasp a childlike view of life that most of us lose with age.  Yet in that childish demeanor, I found more wisdom than in any textbook on Earth.  I've held on to that wisdom, and I know that I have to try and continue with life, no matter how hard the task may be...

No more memories, no more silent tears
No more gazing across the wasted years
Help me say good-bye

It's with great difficulty now that I say my final good-byes.  I've promised myself that I will never return to his grave again.  A final sprig of violets laid on the newly turned dirt, one last trembling gaze, and a quick apparation back to Hogwarts.  Whether I'm ready or not, I'll move on.  

Help me say good-bye