Hermione's thoughts at Harry's funeral. Mentions of sex. Does not include HBP/DH. Slightly AU.
Disclaimer: Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter (et al). That privilege goes to the talented and lovely J. K. Rowling, to whom I am eternally indebted, both for a fascinating read and for many bedtime stories for my daughter.
Disclaimer 2: This story was written back before HBP. That...book...and its sequel, Deadly Horrible, demonstrate that even talented and lovely authors can make (hideously large and ugly) mistakes from time to time.
A/N: I wish to thank my sister, FireLemming, for her beta work. She doesn’t even follow the Harry Potter fandom, preferring TLK, and yet, will take time to offer much needed (and often unappreciated) critical advice. I also must thank her for the more esoteric touches. Having an expert in English literature and anthropology and mythology standing over your shoulder and making snide comments about your writing can be a pain, but it also makes research much easier.
A/N 2: I posted this on Smargden se, a few years ago, so if you recognize it, that’s probably where you read it. My author’s notes are updated and the story is filled out a bit, but otherwise, it’s the same. I also wrote this before I developed the utter detestation I feel for both Dumbledore and Ron.
A/N 3: As far as I’m concerned, books six and seven are not part of the HP universe. I believe Rowling had them ghosted by the absolute worst fanfic writer on Earth, then killed that writer and hid his or her body in a peat bog somewhere.
He looks so peaceful. Like he’s just sleeping. Not that he’s often had a peaceful night’s sleep.
His body lies in state, upon an ornate catafalque in the great hall. One would think he was the ruler of a great nation, rather than just one young man…a world saver.
All the other funerals; Lupin, Moody, Tonks, Snape, Malfoy…yes, even Draco. He’d died at his father’s hands, for refusing to support Voldemort, but had managed to return the favor. Those were done.
Now there was only one…Harry Potter.
Last week we’d buried Albus Dumbledore next to the hallowed grave of Merlin.
We’d wanted to have both funerals together. They had been so like a father, or grandfather, and son, that to do anything else, would be a crime, but Albus, had specified in his will that he wished a small, private gathering consisting of only his family, which was Aberforth, and a few select friends. I was fortunate to be included in that number. He wished to be buried in the Crystal Cave, at Avalon. The Ministry had agreed immediately. I had gone to that sacred place, as well. It was so peaceful there. There were only a handful of graves there. Only the finest wizards in Britain were allowed to rest there. Harry will also be buried there.
I think Albus knew this day had to be for those who mourned Harry alone. He’d stepped aside to allow the healing to begin. That was how he was.
I’d stepped up to his bier in turn, smoothing a wrinkle in his robes. Caressing his forehead, my fingers traced his scar. That damnable scar! How I hated it!
That scar had defined what Harry was, his entire lifetime. It marked him as a survivor of the dark lord. It had plagued him throughout the years we’d spent together. It had warned him when Voldemort was near, forcing him into battle after battle with the dark lord. And finally, it had killed him!
The line behind me shifted. I leaned over and kissed his lips. How cold they were! My tears stained his face. I carefully wiped them away, and shedding many more, I moved on.
Ron stands beside me. Bless him! He’s been there for me, since Harry died. He’s asked me to marry him. He knows I carry Harry’s child, and yet, he asked me anyway.
My parents stand behind me. Daddy and mummy hold me. Their arms wrapped around each other and me.
On my other side, stands Ginny Weasley. She is also carrying Harry’s child. We will both deliver sometime in late July. I’m hoping the thirty first. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley stand proudly behind Ginny.
They know, and they know why.
How he got past the contraceptive charms, I’ll never know. He was a most powerful wizard. I recall that long-ago night, as he thrust himself so desperately into me, he’d whispered: “So you’ll remember me.” As if I could ever forget him. Ginny had told me he’d said the same thing to her, that very night. I’d felt so betrayed! Later I understood why. He’d known this would happen, and he wanted to leave something of himself behind. We’d both gotten pregnant on the same day.
My parents had both been furious when they’d learned I was preggers. My father had railed at me for hours. Mummy just cried. Finally, I’d had enough. I Disapparated. That was three months ago, just one day after the final battle.
I went to the burrow, to find Ginny. I found her alright. She was as swollen as I was. She and Molly were screaming at each other at the top of their lungs.
Molly had been horrified when she’d first seen Ginny’s belly. She’d ranted on about unwed mothers and Ginny’s chances of a decent life. Then she’d gotten ugly. She was saying something about one-night flings with perfect strangers, when I’d walked in. I hit them both with a silencing spell. It’s lucky I had, as I knew Ginny was about to say something horrid!
Both had glared at me, but then Molly had seen my own gravid condition, and had rushed forward. I stayed her, by pointing my wand at her. Her eyes had opened wide in horror.
“Molly, sit down…NOW!” I’d cried. She’d sat. Ginny came to me then, and wrapped her arms around me. I went on. “Molly, Ginny and I are both carrying children from the same man…Harry Potter. We both knew what would happen, Molly, and we both wanted him to live on…through us! Ginny and I will both bear his children, and we’ll raise them together!”
That day, just one day after he’d died, I told her Harry had known he most likely would not survive the destruction of Voldemort, yet he’d gone in anyway.
She’d softened immediately. Molly Weasley had always held a special place in her heart for Harry. Especially after I’d ‘accidentally’ let slip, what I’d known of the prophesy, sometime before, speaking of it loudly enough to be heard through the door when I knew she’d be passing. I’d heard her begin to cry.
I’d felt terrible, but I knew she’d never hear of it from him. He was the type to keep that sort of news to himself, rather than cause pain to those he loved. He’d always been that way; noble and selfless.
Now, he’s dead.
I recall that awful day clearly. I wish to God, I didn’t! A corps of Death Eaters, nearly five hundred strong, surrounded by supporters of the dark lord, almost too numerous to count. Giants and trolls stomping through the streets. Dementors everywhere. Dragons flying through the air, casting flame on our forces and his, with equal abandon.
People, muggle and wizard alike, lay by the thousands, where they’d fallen. The final attack had taken place in London, at the ministry of magic, just as had the attack two years before.
The battle was brutal…unrelenting violence. No quarter was asked or given. This was where we either won, or died.
Harry was brilliant. He moved with the speed and grace of a dancer, in his ballet of death, casting spells with a fluidity of someone many decades older than he.
Dumbledore was no less fluid. His experience served him well. He moved and cast, shielded and blocked at a speed that had to be seen to be believed, all the while slicing great swaths into the flood of enemy troops. Unlike Harry, he fought to contain not to kill. Even after so long, after so many hopeless battles, he still refused to kill. That’s where he went wrong.
He’d had fallen at last…at Voldemort’s hand. The dark lord had dared to rest his foot, on the body of his staunchest enemy. I was outraged. Harry was more.
Harry had apparated directly in front of Voldemort and seized him about the shoulders, rather as an old friend greeting another. He’d cried out some words I did not hear, and thrust his right hand forward.
There was a terrible blast of light, and the most intense heat. I was bowled over by the shock. Everyone around me was. When I could see again, Voldemort had been reduced to charred cinders.
His Death Eaters, bound to him by his dark mark, had followed him into death. Not a one of them had survived.
Harry lay, face up, in the street. His robes had been blasted away from his chest. The skin there was seared black. His glasses were shattered, his eyes…so empty. His face bore the look of grim determination I’d seen so many times before.
His right hand had been reduced to bones.
In the ruin of his hand, he clutched that ancient, crystal, ritual knife. It had been scorched so badly I could barely tell what it had been. Luna had found it in a shop in Norway and brought it back, saying that she knew it would be the thing to defeat the serpent’s heir. She’d been right. We could all feel the awesome power within, but not even Dumbledore knew how to unleash that power. Harry must have learned, however, what method he’d used, we’ll never know. He’d taken that secret with him. Now, it’s a simple crystal knife, nothing more.
I’d rushed to him and held him, but even then, I knew; he was far beyond any help.
Last week, I’d returned home. My parents were still furious with me. I’d performed a calming charm on them both. I’d made them sit in the parlor, brought in some tea, and then I’d told them everything…everything I’d kept from them for so many years.
I told them how I’d fallen in love, at twelve…with a boy, named Harry.
I told them how he’d saved my life from a twelve foot, three tonne, mountain troll.
I told them how I’d sworn that very day, to stand by him, as long as he needed me.
I told them bout all the adventures and terrors we’d shared, how many times he’d faced, and defeated Voldemort,
I told them who and more importantly, what Voldemort was.
I told them of his rebirth, of Cedric’s death and of Harry’s narrow escape.
I told them of the prophesy, of Harry’s destiny, and of his decision.
I told them of all that Harry had been made to suffer, all that he had lost; his parents, Sirius, Remus, Dumbledore, Hagrid, so many of our friends.
I told them how and why I’d gotten pregnant, and about Ginny, too.
I told them about the war, and about Harry’s selfless sacrifice. And then I told them about the funeral today.
When I was done, I’d released the calming charm. They had both wept bitterly at the thought of that poor boy, knowing almost from the first, he must face Voldemort again. Knowing he had to kill, or die…or both. Knowing it. Hating it. Yet, doing it anyway.
My parents stand with me now, as they always have; loving and supporting. I’d brought them to Hogsmead, and we’d walked here. They’d met the Weasley’s again, and seen that Ginny was as far along as I.
All our lives had changed because of a boy with messy black hair, brilliant green eyes, silly glasses, and a scar like lightning on his forehead.
Everyone is here. Even that muggle ‘family’ of his. They stand there, surrounded by Aurors, forced to watch as ‘the freak’ is honored by all the wizarding world, and most of the non-wizarding world as well.
Her Majesty the Queen, was there to officiate at the ceremony. Harry was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross and cluster, the Croix de Guerre, Légion d'honneur and the Order of Merlin, first class. His second award.
Somehow, it doesn’t seem nearly enough.
Mrs. Dursley glances over at me. She sees my swollen belly, and gives me a look of utter disdain. Ginny nudges me. I turn to her and see the spots of rage on her cheeks. She steps around me, so we both face Petunia Dursley, side to side. She sneers openly, now.
We don’t care.
Ginny and I both rub our tummies and smile defiantly. Mrs. Dursley pales, even more, and hurriedly turns her eyes away. Ginny steps back to my side.
I reach out my hand. She touches it with her own. Her fingers are warm and strong. Instantly I hear her in my mind, a gift from Harry through our unborn children. She thinks at me: ~Serves the stupid cow right!~
~Too right it does!~ I return. Then we return to our own thoughts.
He died a hero. Knowing what it would cost him, and yet, never giving it a second thought. He died defeating the single greatest evil, this world had known for almost a thousand years. He died bravely. He died nobly.
Almost a thousand people spoke at his funeral. People who didn’t even know him extolled his virtues to the world. Politicians spoke to hear themselves speak, or in the case of Fudge, tried to take credit for his heroic sacrifice. Nobody paid them the slightest attention. All our teachers and friends had spoken, one after the other. Ron’s words were particularly apt. He’d begun with: “No greater love hath a man, that he would lay down his life for another…” Harry had done just that. He’d laid his life down for everyone, wizard and muggle alike.
Now, it was my turn. I stumbled to the lectern, dreading each step, not knowing how to describe my love for Harry to these people. People I didn’t know. With tears flooding my face, I turned to the throng. At first I couldn’t utter a word.
I could barely hold myself up, my arms and legs were shaking so.
Ron and Ginny came to me then. They held me, and through their unconditional love and support, I found I could finally speak.
“I first met Harry Potter on the train to Hogwarts. He was a skinny, hungry, boy, who was, in almost every way, perfectly normal.”
This story deals with the aftermath of the obscenity we call war. Most people do not want to deal with the death and shattered lives that come from war. Having been a soldier for most of my adult life, I have had to bury many friends. Despite what you may see in the movies, it never ever gets easier.
Harry was also a soldier, fighting a great evil. He knew that he would be called upon to make a sacrifice. He also knew that no one else could fill the role.
For a man, I wrote this from a rather unusual viewpoint. That of a pregnant Hermione.
The emotions: the bitterness, the anguish, the hatred and the pain Hermione felt, those were mine. I wrote what I felt myself, thirteen years ago, when my wife and son died. I truly did not think I could go on living; nor, did I want to.
I think the thing that saved my own life, and maybe my sanity, was a tiny little blond with blue eyes. She’d just lost her mother, and desperately needed her daddy. My daughter had been a year and a half old, then. She’s fifteen now. That is the reason I gave both Hermione and Ginny babies. Harry would live on in their children, giving them a reason to go on themselves, and not surrender to the pain. He impregnated them both, because he loved them both, with every fiber of his being.