As Harry slowly walked to the common room after meeting with McGonagall, Ron and Hermione following him, cautiously. The desire for having a Kreacher made sandwich had lessened slightly for one reason or another. Hermione paused in step. "Is everything alright, Harry? You've been awfully quiet for awhile now."
Harry closed his eyes. Didn't do to let them onto his thoughts right now.
"Sure, 'Mione. I'm peachy." She laughed.
"I know you better than that, Potter." Harry returned the smile.
"Really, I'm fine. You guys better go find Ron's folks; I'm sure they don't want to think they've lost any other children." Ron flinched.
Harry swallowed. It had come out sharper than he realized.
"Ron, I didn't mean--" His best friend stormed off in the direction of the Great Hall. Hermione scowled at him.
"How could you say something so callous to him? He's your best mate, for God's sake!" Harry grew angry.
"I didn't bloody well mean to say it, Hermione! He's just standing there, wallowing in self-pity, while there are students who have lost whole families!" Hermione was stunned at the sudden change in behavior. Even Harry didn't know why he was suddenly spewing out words which he normally and politely kept to himself. She sighed.
"Maybe you're just tired. Get some sleep and I'll try to get Ron off his pedestal. He knew the risks Fred took when he fought in this battle. They were in the Order!" She went to follow Ron, before he did something stupid. Harry sighed.
"Sometimes, I wonder why I keep those two," he muttered uncharacteristically. Harry dejectedly walked the rest of the way to the common room where he forgot to put on his pajamas and simply fell into bed. He slept fitfully for the first time in years.
The next morning, Harry awoke with a chill creeping over him. He wrapped his sheets around himself and walked to the bathroom. He rubbed his eyes, put on his glasses and looked up in the mirror, expecting to see a groggy, unflattering reflection of himself, and instead he saw...RIDDLE!Harry let out a scream that caused Neville to come running in, pajamas askew. He looked panicked.
"What is it, Harry?!"
The DA had decided to watch over Harry for the first couple nights, as their had been purported threats by angry Death Eaters captured and currently being stored in the Potions dungeons under close supervision. Harry sat down, trembling, on the bedspread. He could still clearly recall the handsome smirking face, the dark hair not so much unlike his own, the dark, heartless eyes...
"No, no, it can't be. He's dead. I killed him. He's dead!" Neville's eyes widened.
"Who, Harry! Who's dead? What's going on?" Harry shook his head.
"It was just a dream, that's all. Just a fucked up dream is all. Nothing to worry about." Neville swallowed.
"Well, alright then, mate. If you need anything, just call."
"Yeah, thanks." Harry rubbed his eyes and laid against his four poster. Probably just stress. He did just defeat Voldemort after all. People would forgive him for being a little stressed, he´d think. After all, he was the bloody savior after the seventeen years of hell that he had been through.
They need to pay me a little respect. All I´ve gotten are fake interviews by Rita Skeeter and the whole effing Ministry wanting to worship me.
Too right they should. Harry shook his head. Where had that come from? He sighed, clearing the cobwebs from his mind with a hand swiped across his forehead. They lingered on the scar. It seemed to be doing alright. They traced the familiar lightning bolt shape...so simple and yet it became so troublesome...
After yawning and pulling up his trainers, he made sure his wand was in his front pocket, because he knew better than to leave it in his back one--
CONSTANT VIGILANCE, BOY!
Oh, no. Why did he have to think about that now! Moody was....dead. That was known to everyone now. So was--
And that was when the thoughts, unbidden, which he had successfully kept out of his mind for a few hours now, came rushing back.
Remus, Tonks. Oh, god. Hedwig. Dobby. Fred.
No, no, not now!
Harry scrunched his eyes shut. Their faces were appearing like a slideshow turned on full speed.
Remus, Tonks, their lives cut short by his stupidity and destiny. They would never hold their infant son again. Hedwig, his loyal friend and companion, struck down in the line of fire. Dobby, who without a doubt saved his life. Fred, who would never again laugh and make others laugh. Others, nameless faces in front of him, again and again and again.
Harry was sure that those nameless faces would be replaced by actual ones later on. This wasn´t a dream. It was a reality- living, breathing people who had died under the delusion that they would be helping the cause, the war. If only I had gone to him earlier. Maybe they all wouldn´t have died...
His thoughts were awash with confusion, anger, sadness. He supposed that rage had already insinuated itself within him years ago. Harry took a deep breath. He wasn´t ready to go down into the Great Hall, but he needed to...see. All of them. The families, the fallen...he would have to hold himself together for a bit.