An Unfortunate Encounter

It was nearing midnight when Harry finally made his way back to Gryffindor Tower on this, the night before the graduation ceremony and his last night as a student of Hogwarts School of Magic.

He took his time and walked at a slow pace as he reminisced about all he had learned, the friendships he'd made and the unforgettable experiences he'd encountered during the past seven years.

But no more so than the incredible experience he'd just had with Severus.

And not only was he about to begin a new adventure away from the castle, living in a new place with Ron and Hermione and finally starting Auror school, but he was also head over heels in love with Severus and the morning after next they would Port Key to Sev's villa in Tuscany where he would finally — get laid.

"God, I can't wait," he whispered.

"What was that you said?" asked the Fat Lady in the portrait.

"Um … I said I can't wait for the graduation ceremony tomorrow."

"Must be very exciting," she smiled and brushed a stray bit of dust off her pink taffeta gown. "You're ready with your speech?"

"Oh yeah, that's ready." He stepped forward and nearly bumped into the portrait when it remained stubbornly closed.

"Password," she called out.

"But you know me!"

"No password, no entry," she said adamantly.

"I guess some things'll never change," he said with a sigh and a roll of his eyes.

"That is not the password."

He chuckled at her tenacity and gave the password. "Destiny."

"Correct," she said and swung open to allow him passage.

Harry made to enter but then paused and said softly, "Hey, thanks for protecting us all these years."

In all her years of guarding the entrance to Gryffindor Tower, no one but Dumbledore had ever thanked her. "Why thank you," she said in a now wobbly voice, "and best of luck to you dear boy."

Harry smiled and headed on through the porthole.

The common room was empty of seventh years, They're probably all still at the party, he thought and so he headed on up the stairs. As soon as he entered his dorm-room, he was surrounded by his dorm mates.

"Where've ya been?" asked Ron.

"I had my final; you know that."

"How did it go?" asked Dean.

"I got an Outstanding," Harry answered and then thought about his time with Severus after his final. "It went really, really well."

"But we've been waiting for hours," exclaimed Seamus. "What took ya so long?"

Harry was about to ask why they weren't at the party but Ron interrupted, "Never mind that. Listen Harry, we've come up with a great idea."

"What kind of idea?"

"You know how you've been stuck at the castle all this time, and tomorrow we graduate and then we'll move on to different places …" Dean started to explain.

"So we figured we should do something fun," finished Seamus.

"Like what?" asked Harry with a bit of trepidation.

"Just hear us out before you say anything," Ron

"Uh … oh."

"We know its past curfew and we know you're Head Boy and all …"

"I don't think I like the sound of this …"

"But when else will we ever get a chance to do something like this?"

"Do something like what? You still haven't told me!" Harry asked in frustration.

"You tell him Ron."

The tall red-head rested his arm on Harry's shoulder. "Here's the plan: we get our brooms, go up to the Astronomy tower and fly to the Hog's Head for a farewell drink — just us guys. Isn't that a great idea?"

The stunned look on Harry's face told them he thought differently. "We can't do that … We'd be breaking so many rules, and I'm not supposed to leave the castle."

"Oh, come on Harry. We may never be together again and besides, you just said that you got an Outstanding on your defense final."

"Well …"

"That's the spirit!"

"But what about Neville?"

"He went off somewhere with Luna."

"Oh." Harry vacillated, he knew he shouldn't leave the castle but at the same time, he felt confident in his abilities. "I suppose if we make it a quick one. But nobody gets plastered, and no one …"

Ron interrupted Harry midsentence. "Will you stop being so blinkered? We'll behave. Come on, let's go."

"Wait up, I gotta get my broom."

Ron pulled the Firebolt out from behind the couch. "We're one up on you mate."

The four soon-to-be graduates headed up to the top of the tower and made their way to The Hog's Head. By the time they entered the pub, all four were laughing and gallivanting so much that none of them noticed the shadowy figure spying on them from a nearby dark alley.

~SH~

"Come on guys. I need to get back and go to bed — so do you."

Unlike Harry who was still nursing his first drink, the other three had downed at least two a piece.

"No way! We're just getting started. Come on, drink up." Ron turned back to the bar, "My friend here needs another drink!" he finished with a hiccup.

"I'm not having another drink and neither are you. Come on, you promised one hour and it's been one hour. I don't know about you but I'm gonna leave right now."

"Well you go ahead and leave, Mr. Head Boy."

Ron's sarcastic retort left Harry stunned and silent.

"Come on Harry," Seamus encouraged, "just finish your drink."

"He's right," added Dean, "Besides; we haven't said 'Hi' yet to the two lovelies sitting in the back. See them? The ones with the big knockers."

Harry had had enough. "That's it – I'm leaving and so should you. You'll be sick if you drink anymore."

No one made any attempt to stand and so with a harrumph, Harry grabbed his broom and headed out the door.

As he swung his leg over his Firebolt, the same individual whom had spied them earlier was now hiding around the side of the building, lying in wait for their regress.

He raised his wand and cast a stunning spell that hit the unsuspecting teen squarely between his shoulders.

The Death Eater stepped forward and caught Harry as he collapsed backwards. Then in a heartbeat, he turned and they both Disapparated.

~SH~