AN: This is written for 'The Graduation Competition' on HPFC, my character was Hannah Abbott and the emotion I was given was longing.

Disclaimer: I own nothing

Enjoy and Please R&R!

Hannah sat behind her husband at the Hogwarts graduation ceremony as she had always done, ever since he became Head of Gryffindor House. She clapped politely as student after student was received onto the platform with cat-calls and applause. These young adults had spent the last seven years together, living together, their fights, their friendships and now they were to embark on the next greatest adventure.

Some were headed for the ministry, auror training, internships, secretarial positions, management and diplomacy.

Some were entering family business or looking for work in Diagon Alley.

Others had grand ideas of travel and culture and learning form other societies.

Whatever the next adventure was, the graduating class was happy. It was a completely different situation from 1999.

Hannah remembered her graduation. Although, she'd missed a whole year of school when her mother died she kept up with the reading and was re-admitted for a second seventh-year with Neville, Hermione and the other survivors.

The graduation for the class of 1999 was a teary occasion.

There were so many gaps in the list of names, so many people who should have been there. When they'd all been eleven it seemed like things would never change. There were rumours and Harry Potter was always getting into scrapes but it was just ordinary, magical school.

It changed so rapidly.

They were the children that had been soldiers. They had to fight evil, stand up as righteous and turn the other cheek when beatings were doled out.

Two months after the battle Susan Bones had drowned herself; Hannah's best friend hadn't been able to cope with the stress of it all.

They all had therapy sessions. In one particularly, emotion filled session Hermione had described the cruciatus Bellatrix had subjected her to. They had all cried.

Terry, holding back tears, spoke of the injuries he sustained.

Hannah, had relived her worst memories, of being tortured and watching Neville suffer so much for the cause.

Lavender Brown, with her werewolf scars, silently sobbed.

Neville had retreated into silence, spending the weekends at the hospital with his parents.

It wasn't fair! Why could only some survive?

Harry and Ron didn't come back to graduate. The boys came for graduation though. It was too soon. They were cold and hard and distant. Even Ginny couldn't get Harry to open up.

Hermione had scored Os in every single NEWT. It was response to her parents still being in Australia and the fact she was all alone at school and very vulnerable.

Neville had scored an O in herbology.

Hannah had spent the year being the shoulder to cry on. She only scored two NEWTS and often wished she had done better. Often, she blamed the emotional state that she had to endure, other times she simply cursed her stupidity. Neville had a good job, academically respected and all she had was the pub. The couple and their young son, Frank, were often invited to the Potters' or Weasleys' for dinner but Hannah always felt inadequate. Next to Hermione and Ron and Harry and even her own husband she was constantly longing for a more respected position in society.

She ended up blaming the turmoil she went through. She wanted to remember a normal, happy graduation not a tearful, mourning memorial of those who died in war. She wanted to have passed more NEWTs and not have had to worry about others who were on the verge of nervous breakdowns. She didn't have time to properly mourn Susan. It just wasn't fair.

All they wanted was a normal seventh year.

All she wanted was a normal graduation. Sometimes she would lie awake at night and imagine what could have been. So different to Neville who had a calm acceptance of life, he'd suffered so much.

So Hannah continued to politely clap and smile at the graduating students of this year. They at least had the chance to experience peace. However, the taste of bitter linging would never truly leave her.