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Chapter 1

Death Eater meeting in progress.

"My Lord," said a dark woman halfway down the table, her voice constricted with emotion, "it is an honor to have you here, in our family's house. There can be no higher pleasure."

Snape leaned over to Yaxley and muttered, "Rather says something about Rudolph's skills in the bedroom, does it not?"

---

Chapter 1

Death Eater meeting in progress.

Voldemort continues his rant, "We shall cut away the canker that infects us until only those of the true blood remain."

Lucius rolled his eyes and said, "Which, I'm sure, won't have any adverse affects on our inbreeding problems."

---

Chapter 1

Voldemort has just killed Professor Charity Burbage.

"Dinner, Nagini," said Voldemort softly. As the great snake moved toward the still warm body, Voldemort's face contorted into a ghoulish grin and he said, "Let all my nay-sayers take note: I can give Charity ."

---

Chapter 3

Vernon Dursley wants to speak with Harry.

Vernon roared, "Get down here. I want a word!"

"Merlin knows you'll need more than one to fill that empty space atop your neck," Harry observed.

---

Chapter 3

The Order is trying to convince the Dursleys to move, but aren't having much success.

"I've changed my mind," Vernon said.

"I bet you had to pay a fortune in upgrade costs."

---

Chapter 3

Vernon is convinced there is a "plot" to get him to move.

"Are you out of your mind?" demanded Harry. "A plot to get the house? Are you actually as stupid as you look?" Harry theatrically waved a hand. "Ah, what am I asking? Impressive as it is, you all are in fact far dumber that you look." After a moment of contemplation, Harry amended, "Except Dudley. If he were that dumb, he wouldn't know how to breath."

---

Chapter 4

Moody is explaining the escape plan to Harry.

"Now, your mother's charm will only break under two conditions: when you come of age, or," Moody gestured around the pristine kitchen, "when you no longer call this place home. You and your aunt and uncle are going your separate ways tonight, in the full understanding that you're never going to live together again, correct?"

Harry nodded and turned his head. "Hey, Gred and Forge? If all of that is true, how'd you two do so much magic at the Burrow before you turned seventeen?"

---

Chapter 4

The Polyjuice has just been keyed to Harry.

"Ooh, you look much tastier than Crabbe and Goyle, Harry," said Hermione.

Harry leered at her. "Thank you. We can confirm that theory later."

---

Chapter 4

Six Order members have just turned into polyjuiced Harry Potters.

Harry turned to the one on the far left. "Well, here's your chance, Ron."

"Whazzat?" asked Ron-Harry.

"You've always wanted to be me. Here's your chance. Just be careful as you may get shot at tonight. And then there's the stalker fan-girls and the attacks by the Prophet . Other than that, enjoy your chance to be the world-famous Boy-Who-Lived."

---

Chapter 4

Fleur has just been polyjuiced into Harry.

"Bah," said Fleur, checking herself in the microwave door. "Bill, don't look at me. I'm 'ideous."

Harry scowled at the woman who currently was a perfect copy of him. "Thank you for that concise description of my appearance, Ms. Delacour."

---

Chapter 5

Tonks has just showed up at the Burrow after the escape.

"So what kept you? What happened?" Lupin sounded almost angry at Tonks.

" What happened? Oh, we stopped for a spot of tea at the Leakey. What the bloody hell do you think happened?" Tonks bellowed at her hovering boyfriend.

---

Chapter 5

Remus and Bill just left to recover Moody's remains.

"I've got to go, too," said Harry.

Ten pairs of startled eyes look at him.

"Don't be silly, Harry," said Mrs. Weasley. "What are you talking about?"

Harry gave her a strange look. "I've got to go to the loo. What did you think I was talking about?"

---

Chapter 5

Harry finally meets up with Ron and Hermione after the escape.

"Are you all right?" Hermione asked, close enough now to look into Harry's face. "You look awful!"

Harry rolled his eyes. "I can't imagine why. Not like we had a running firefight over half of Surrey tonight or anything."

---

Chapter 6

Molly Weasley is trying to interrogate Harry about his plans.

"May I ask why you are abandoning your education?" asked Mrs. Weasley.

"I realized I could make far more in the adult film industry. I've two films lined up so far. Hot, Horny Harry in Hawaii , and Banging Buxom Babes in the Bahamas ."

---

Chapter 6

Molly Weasley is trying to interrogate Harry about his plans.

"Well, Dumbledore left me . . . stuff to do," mumbled Harry. "Ron and Hermione know about it, and they want to come, too."

"What sort of 'stuff'?"

"Dumbledore wants us to join the freak show at the carnival. He said something about it being valuable work experience."

---

Chapter 7

Ron and Harry are trying to identify Gregorovitch.

"I think Voldemort's looking for him."

"Poor bloke," said Ron fervently.

"We're assuming it's a bloke, though. For all we know, it could be his favorite pair of boxers."

---

Chapter 7

Ron just gave Harry a birthday present.

"This isn't your average book," said Ron. "It's pure gold: Twelve Fail-Safe Ways to Charm Witches . Explains everything you need to know about girls."

"And you're an expert on relationships with witches, Won-won?"

---

Chapter 7

Minister Scrimgeour is speaking with the trio about Dumbledore's bequests.

"Dumbledore must have taught thousands of students," Scrimgeour persevered. "You the only ones he remembered in his will are you three. Why is that?"

Hermione's eyebrows rose. "You mean he didn't leave anything to Professor McGonagall? He taught her, you know. Come to that, he's taught everyone in Britain for the past six generations or so, hasn't he?"

---

Chapter 7

The trio is taking about what they received from Dumbledore.

"If these things were important enough to pass on right under the nose of the Ministry, you'd think he'd have let us know why . . . unless he thought it was obvious?"

Harry shook his head in disgust. "Why actually tell us when he could be cryptic, obstructionist, and obtuse instead?"

---

Chapter 9

The trio just escaped from the wedding.

Ron looked around. "Don’t you feel a bit - exposed?"

Hermione looks down for a moment. "Nope, no wardrobe malfunctions, here."

---

Chapter 9

The trio talking about the Trace on Harry.

"The Trace breaks at seventeen. That's wizarding law. You can't put it on an adult."

Hermione sneered at him. "And as we know the Death Eaters wouldn't ever break the law, then that can't possibly be it, right?"

---

Chapter 12

The trio talks about Harry's Occlumency lessons.

"Hermione, I can't. You know I'm lousy at Occlumency; I never got the hang of it."

"You never really tried!" she said hotly.

Harry snarled back, "How good do you think you would do with Snape bashing at your brain like a vindictive ogre and not one shred of actual instruction?"

---

Chapter 12

A morning at Grimmauld.

"You look terrible," was Ron's greeting.

"Can't imagine why. Not like I have the fate of human civilization riding on my shoulders or anything."

---

Chapter 12

The trio talk about Kreacher after the elf promised them lunch.

"Bless him," said Ron fondly, "and when you think I used to fantasize about cutting off his head and sticking it on the wall."

Hermione didn't even look over. "I think the same of you. Often."

---

Chapter 13

Delores Umbridge is speaking with the polyjuiced Hermione and Harry.

"We'll go straight down, Mafalda. You'll find everything you need in the courtroom. Good morning, Albert. Aren't you getting out?"

In his borrowed deep voice, Harry lamented, "If I only could get out. Out of this country, out of this nightmare, out of this conversation, out of this . . . Well, you get the idea."

---

Chapter 13

Polyjuiced Hermione is watching the trial of a suspected muggleborn witch.

"They're frightened, they think I might not come home -"

"Spare us," spat Yaxley. "The brats of Mudbloods do not stir our sympathies."

"I'll remember that at your trial," Hermione muttered.

---

Chapter 14

The trio is discussing the fate of the muggleborns at the hands of the Ministry.

"Blimey, I hope they escaped," said Ron. "I didn't get the feeling Reg Cattermole was all that quick-witted, though, the way everyone was talking to me when I was him."

"Should've felt perfectly natural for you then, shouldn't it?"

---

Chapter 14

The trio is discussing what to do with the locket.

"What are we going to do with it?" Hermione asked.

Ron waved one hand languidly. "Oh, I thought I'd build a shrine and sacrifice a few children to it."

---

Chapter 14

Hermione is chastising Harry who has had another vision.

"If you just learned to apply Occlumency -"

"Forgive me for failing to learn the world's most difficult mental magical art from a sadistic bastard who not only hates me with an unholy rage but is quite probably the single worst teacher in the entire history of Hogwarts!"

---

Chapter 15

Ron is about to leave the other two.

"I get it. You choose him."

Hermione rolled her eyes at him. "No, I choose to try to save the entire world rather than run home when I'm hungry, whiney, bored, and scared that my sister isn't safe enough while at school."

---

Chapter 15

Ron has just left the other two.

"He's g-g-gone! Disapparated!"

"Good! I thought he'd never leave. Where'd you hide that bottle of champagne, Hermione?"

---

Chapter 16

Harry and Hermione are discussing Grindelwald's symbol.

"And you'd think Scrimgeour would have recognized it. He was Minister, he ought to have been expert on Dark stuff." Before the thought had even finished, Harry rolled his eyes and continued, "Just being a politician , you'd think would make him an expert on Dark stuff."

---

Chapter 16

Harry and Hermione are discussing locations for Gryffindor's sword.

"Harry, what if Bathilda's got the sword ? What if Dumbledore entrusted it to her?"

"Sure hope not. His track record for trusting the right people is kind of spotty, don't you think?"

---

Chapter 19

Ron and Harry are discussing the doe patronus they saw.

"My patronus is a stag."

"Oh yeah. I thought it looked different."

Hermione snorted. "Congratulations. You're even more dense than I thought, which I didn't heretofore believe possible."

Ron looked equal parts affronted and confused. "Hey, now. What're you on about?"

"You just admitted that you can't tell the difference between boys and girls, Ron," Harry explained patiently.

---

Chapter 19

Harry wants Ron to destroy the locket with the sword.

"I can't do it, Harry!"

Harry nodded. "At least you're honest enough with yourself to realize you're weak-minded and easily influenced by evil, inanimate objects."

---

Chapter 19

Harry and Ron are trying to destroy the locket Horcrux.

Then a voice hissed from out of the Horcrux. " I have seen your heart, and it is mine ."

"No, actually," Harry calmly denied, "his heart is ruled by his ego and his stomach, not you."

---

Chapter 19

Ron has returned and is trying to apologize.

"I'm sorry," he said in a thick voice. "I'm sorry I left. I know I was a - a -"

"Oh, I'd better sit down. It'll take me awhile to figure how just how to finish that sentence," Harry observed.

---

Chapter 19

Harry has just accepted Ron's apology.

"And now," said Harry as they broke apart, "all we've got to do is find the tent again."

Ron's eyes widened. "You lost it? It's only the size of a bloody house; how'd you lose it?"

---

Chapter 19

Ron is having a difficult time apologizing to Hermione.

"I came running after you! I called you! I begged you to come back!"

Harry turned to Ron in amazement. "She begged you to do something and you didn't? Wow, you're an even bigger arse than I thought, and I already thought you were a pretty big arse."

---

Chapter 20

Ron is explaining the Taboo.

"Now they've put a Taboo on it, anyone says it is trackable - quick-and-easy way to find Order members!"

Harry frowned. "You'd think that Dumbledore would've mentioned it when he encouraged everyone to say it!"

Hermione shook her head. "This just doesn't make sense. Why not add, 'You-Know-Who' and 'Dumbledore' and maybe 'Order of the Phoenix' if they're after Order members? For that matter, if setting a Taboo on words is possible, why didn't the Department of Law Enforcement set them on the Unforgivables ages ago?"

---

Chapter 20

The trio are talking about the Hallows.

"Why wouldn't he just hand us the sword?"

"Search me," said Ron. "Same reason he didn't give it to you while he was alive? Same reason he left you an old Snitch and Hermione a book of kids' stories?"

"Which is what?" asked Harry, turning to look Ron full in the face, desperate for the answer.

"More long, drawn out trials and tribulations for you, obviously. Why make it easy on the boy hero when he can instead make everything ten times more difficult every step of the way? What kind of eccentric and exasperating mentor do you take him for, anyway?"

---

Chapter 20

The trio are talking about Dumbledore.

"We keep trying to convince ourselves Dumbledore left us secret signs and clues -"

"Well, he certainly didn't leave us a clear set of instructions. I'd rather think he left us some information than think he set us off on a wild snitch chase."

---

Chapter 21

Xenophilius Lovegood is aggravating Hermione.

"I mean, you could claim that anything's real if the only basis for believing in it is that nobody's proved it doesn't exist!"

"Yes, you could," said Xenophilius. "I am glad to see that you are opening your mind a little."

Ron shook his head. "I'm afraid that she isn't. Your method of debate is simply too awe-inspiring for her tiny, feeble mind to comprehend."

---

Chapter 21

The trio are discussing the Elder Wand.

"Wands are only as powerful as the wizards who use them. Some wizards just like to boast that theirs are bigger and better than other people's."

Ron's eyebrows rose. "Yes, some wizards like to boast about their wands, but I never took you to be the kind of girl to listen to such things, Hermione."

---

Chapter 22

The trio has just escaped the Rookery and Ron wonders why Hermione threw the Invisibility Cloak over him.

"Why hide me, though?" asked Ron.

Harry shrugged. "Beats me. If you're so upset by it, why don't you go back and help Travers and Selwyn clean up?"

Hermione shook her head. "Actually, I was just tired of looking at his ugly mug."

---

Chapter 22

The trio is talking about Xenophilius's story of the Hallows.

"Well, I don't suppose it matters," sighed Hermione. "Even if he was being honest, I never heard such a lot of nonsense in all my life."

Harry's mouth quirked into a smile. "How about a scrawny pre-teen waving a stick with a feather in it and turning a pincushion into a porcupine?"

---

Chapter 22

The trio is talking about the Hallows and how to properly learn their story.

"But you said it, Hermione! You've got to find out about them for yourself! It's a Quest!"

"Because a dying old man who is trying to save the world would rather send you on a Quest instead of telling you what you needed to know?"

---

Chapter 23

Early in the fight in Malfoy Manor.

Harry yelled, " Stupefy !" and Lucius Malfoy collapsed onto the hearth.

At a momentary pause, Hermione asked, "A stunner? We're in a fight for our very lives against inner circle Death Eaters and you stun them?!"

---

Chapter 23

Later in the fight in Malfoy Manor.

Harry leapt over an armchair and wrested the three wands from Draco's grip, pointed all of them at Greyback, and yelled, " Stupefy !"

Ron stopped trying to dig Hermione out of the wreckage just long enough to turn to Harry. Incredulously, he yelled, "AGAIN with a stunner?"

---

Chapter 24

Harry has finished burying Dobby and is now speaking with Griphook.

"You are an unusual wizard, Harry Potter."

"This is news?" Ron asked.

Hermione nodded in agreement. "We've been telling people that for years."

---

Chapter 24

Griphook and the trio are debating goblin rights.

"The right to carry a wand," said the goblin quietly, "has long been contested between wizards and goblins."

"Well, goblins can do magic without wands," said Ron.

Griphook's smirk blossomed. "You prove my point. You wand-carriers can also do magic without wands, yet all of you choose not to do so. More importantly, you do not give us that choice."

---

Chapter 24

The trio is speaking with Griphook about the Lestrange vault.

"But the fake sword isn't the only thing in that vault, is it?" asked Harry. "Perhaps you've seen the other things in there?"

Griphook frowned and shook his head. "This again? Yes, there is also gold in that vault. However, I distinctly recall you said you weren't going to take anything for personal gain. So much for that promise."

---

Chapter 24

The trio is talking about young Tom Riddle and Gringotts.

"He never had gold there when he was younger, because nobody left him anything. He would have seen the bank from the outside, though, the first time he ever went to Diagon Alley."

Ron shook his head and condescendingly said, "Everyone does, Harry. That big, white building in Diagon Alley is kinda hard to miss. This hardly makes the guy unique."

---

Chapter 24

The trio is talking about Gringotts versus Hogwarts's ability to safeguard objects.

"He probably told her it was a treasured possession and asked her to place it in her vault. The safest place in the world for anything you want to hide, Hagrid told me . . . except for Hogwarts."

Hermione shook her head. "Hogwarts hardly has a stellar track record over the past few years, Harry."

---

Chapter 24

The trio is talking about Harry's lack of a wand.

Ron gave Harry a reproachful look, and said, "Let's not worry about that now -"

"Then when?" Harry demanded. "In case it's escaped your attention, we're kinda pressed for time, here. So if I shouldn't worry about it now, then when?"

---

Chapter 24

Ollivander is speaking with the trio about the Elder Wand.

"The owner of the Elder Wand must always fear attack," said Ollivander, "but the idea of the Dark Lord in possession of the Deathstick is, I must admit . . . formidable."

"You have a gift for understatement, Mr. Ollivander," Hermione said quietly.

---

Chapter 25

The trio is still talking about their plan to get the sword.

"But that could be years!" said Hermione.

"I know that, but he needn't. I won't be lying . . . really."

Hermione's voice went as flat as her eyes. "Just like Dumbledore wasn't lying to you about your godfather or the prophecy for years? Withholding information isn't lying, is that your argument?"

---

Chapter 26

Hermione is taking Polyjuice before the raid on Gringotts.

"She tasted disgusting , worse than Gurdyroots! Okay, Ron, come here so I can do you . . ."

Harry made a face and looked at Hermione in horror. "Ugh! What you two do when I'm not around is your business, but don't talk about it in front of me, please. Talk about disgusting!"

---

Chapter 26

Harry has just cast the Imperious Curse upon Travers during the Gringotts raid.

"What are you making him do?"

Harry looked Griphook with an expression of surprise. "Sing 'I'm a Little Teapot'. What the bloody blue hell do you think I'd have a Death Eater do while we're making a dangerous raid on Gringotts?"

---

Chapter 26

Harry has just released the dragon underneath Gringotts.

"This way!" Harry yelled, and still shooting Stunning Spells at the advancing goblins, he sprinted toward the blind dragon.

"Harry - Harry - what are you doing?"

"Aw, come on, Hermione! I know you got to ride the pony at the county fair. Seeing as how the Dursleys never even took me, I kinda wanted to try out the next best thing."

---

Chapter 28

The trio just met Aberforth Dumbledore.

"You bloody fools," he said gruffly, looking from one to the other of them. "What were you thinking, coming here?"

Ron was looking around the dingy back room of the equally dingy pub. "We heard you made a cracking good Little Wizards Spirit and wanted to try it."

---

Chapter 30

Hogwarts is preparing for the Death Eater invasion.

"And now - Piertotum Locomotor !" cried Professor McGonagall.

And all along the corridor, the statues and suits of armor jumped down from their plinths, and from the echoing crashes from the floors above and below, Harry knew that their fellows throughout the castle had done the same.

"Hogwarts is threatened!" shouted Professor McGonagall. "Man the boundaries, protect us, do your duty to our school!"

Harry had a wide grin on is face as he turned to his former head of house. "Awesome! I bet you've always wanted to do that."

---

Chapter 31

Hogwarts is preparing for the Death Eater invasion, but Voldemort has overridden the loudspeakers.

"I know that you are preparing to fight. Your efforts are futile. You cannot fight me. I do not want to kill you. I have great respect for the teachers of Hogwarts. I do not want to spill magical blood."

"I call bullshite!" Neville called. "Explain all the muggleborn and so-called blood traitors you've ordered killed. You don't care about spilling magical blood. You're only interested in those who will fight for you."

---

Chapter 31

Harry and Aberforth speak for a moment while Hogwarts is preparing for the Death Eater invasion.

"And it never occurred to any of you to keep a few Slytherins hostage? There are kids of Death Eaters you've just sent to safety. Wouldn't it have been a bit smarter to keep 'em here?"

Harry snorted. "If you think hiding behind Theo Nott or Pansy Parkinson would buy us any time at all, then you're as mushy-headed and idealistic as you've accused your brother of being."

---

Chapter 31

Ron and Hermione have visited the Chamber of Secrets.

"But how did you get in there?" he asked, staring from the fangs to Ron. "You need to speak Parseltongue!"

"He did!" whispered Hermione. "Show him, Ron!"

Ron made a horrible, strangled hissing noise.

Harry rolled his eyes. "I didn't understand a word of that, so that wasn't Parseltongue. Therefore, you're just imitating noises, not speaking the snake's language." He turned and shook his head sadly. "Really, Hermione, you must be more accurate with what you say."

---

Chapter 31

Ron and Hermione have visited the Chamber of Secrets.

Ron made a horrible, strangled hissing noise.

Harry's eyes widened. "I didn't really need to hear that, Ron. What you want to do with Fluffy, four pints of bubotuber pus, and a shepard's pie is your own business."

---

Chapter 31

Ron and Hermione destroyed the Hufflepuff Cup horcrux.

"Genius!" yelled Harry.

"It was nothing," said Ron, though he looked delighted with himself. "So, what's new with you?"

"I heard a story from Ravenclaw's daughter about theft, unrequited love, betrayal, murder, and suicide. Why can't all history lessons be that action packed?"

---

Chapter 33

Voldemort is again addressing everyone within the besieged Hogwarts.

"If you continue to resist me, you will all die, one by one. I do not wish this to happen. Every drop of magical blood spilled is a loss and a waste."

Somehow, Professor McGonagall repeated Voldemort's trick of an amplified voice and countered him. "What of Harry Potter? Is he not magical? What of Amelia Bones? Was she, too, not magical? How many hundreds and thousands of muggleborn, half-blood, and pureblood witches and wizards have you had executed over the past year? You claim now that you value magical blood, but your actions only go to prove that you're naught more than a liar."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Lily just did intentional magic.

"How do you do it?" Petunia asked.

"It's obvious, isn't it?" Snape could no longer contain himself, but had jumped out from behind the bushes.

"What's obvious?" asked Lily.

"That you're an abomination in league with unholy powers. Or maybe aliens." She paused in thought, looking back and forth between the two stunned speechless pre-teens in front of her. "Yes, probably aliens. Even for a boy, that much grease in his hair just can't be human."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, the Evans family is seeing Lily off to Hogwarts for the first time.

"- you think I want to be a - freak?"

Mrs. Evans leveled a narrow-eyed glare at her eldest daughter. "With as jealous as you've been acting for months? Yes, in fact I do think you want to be a 'freak'."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Snape is trying to convince Lily that Lupin is a werewolf.

"Every month at the full moon?" asked Snape.

"I know your theory," said Lily, and she sounded cold. "Why are you so obsessed with them anyway? Why do you care what they're doing at night?"

Young Sirius Black casually strolled around one of the columns as they passed and seamlessly answered her question, "He's jealous. He just wants to learn how to do something at night that doesn't exclusively involve his right hand."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore finally reveals his plan with regards to keeping Draco from falling to the dark.

"Are you intending to let him kill you?"

"Certainly not. You must kill me."

There was a long silence as Snape stared at the old Headmaster. "While your utter arrogance and twinkley-eyed, supposed humility in service to your mythical Greater Good is oftentimes cause for me to want to fire an Explosion Curse up your boney backside, I fail to see how your death would much improve the situation as a whole, let alone the one with Draco."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Snape wants to know what Dumbledore's been teaching Harry.

"What are you doing with Potter, all these evenings you are closeted together?" Snape asked abruptly.

Dumbledore sighed softly. "Maybe when you're older, I'll explain it, but you're far too young to understand it yet."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore is explaining why Voldemort will not try to possess Harry again.

"Lord Voldemort's soul, maimed as it is, cannot bear close contact with a soul like Harry's. Like a tongue on frozen steel, like flesh in flame -"

"Like crups and kneazles, yeah, yeah, yeah. Get on with it already and speak plainly instead of metaphors and similes wrapped in allusions."

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore explains more of the master plan.

"After you have killed me, Severus -"

"I'm going to Disney World!"

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore explains more of the master plan.

"If there comes a time when Lord Voldemort stops sending that snake forth to do his bidding, but keeps it safe beside him under magical protection, then, I think, it will be safe to tell Harry."

"Tell him what?"

"I never told him the truth." Here, Dumbledore turned and seemed to look straight at the silently observing Harry. "Harry, I am your father!"

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Snape reveals that his patronus is a doe.

"After all this time?"

"Always," said Snape.

"You should have said something all those years ago, Severus. I could have provided you with a Gender-Bender Potion and then you could have been James's animagus form's lover."

---

Chapter 34

Harry tells Neville that Nagini must be killed.

"It's got to be killed. Ron and Hermione know that, but just in case they -"

Neville grinned. "Just in case they're too busy sucking face to follow, you know, the plan to save the world?"

---

Chapter 35

A "dead" Harry meets Dumbledore in King's Cross.

"Then . . . I'm dead, too?"

"Ah," said Dumbledore, "that is the question, isn't it? On the whole, dear boy, I think not."

"So I'm only mostly dead? Well, I suppose that's good, just so long as nobody mistakes it for completely dead and goes through my clothes, looking for loose change."

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore is trying to explain why Harry didn't completely die.

"But I should have died - I didn't defend myself! I meant to let him kill me!"

"And that," said Dumbledore, "will, I think, have made all the difference."

Harry frowned. "That argument is ridiculous. By letting him kill me, I'm not really dead? By that logic, if I forced him to kill me, I'd then not only not be dead, I'd have two lives like some warped video game!"

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore is trying to explain why Harry didn't completely die.

"Explain," said Harry.

"But you already know," said Dumbledore.

"Obviously not, otherwise I would have had to ask. Hey, is that the reason for all the misery of the last year? You thought I knew what to do instead of you actually telling me anything useful?"

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore is trying to explain why Harry's wand was working abnormally well against Voldemort's.

"I believe that our wand imbibed some of the power and qualities of Voldemort's wand that night, which is to say that it contained a little of Voldemort himself."

"Wait, wait, wait. So by my winning the Priori Incantatem duel that night three years ago, my wand absorbed some of the abilities of him and ultimately a little of Voldemort himself?"

Dumbledore nodded happily. "Yes, indeed."

"Headmaster, have you been sampling some of Professor Sprouts experimental mushrooms?" Harry asked politely but firmly.

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore is explaining his history after he and Gellert Grindelwald dueled, resulting in Ariana's death.

"Years passed. There were rumors about him. They said he had procured a wand of immense power. I, meanwhile, was offered the post of Minister of Magic, not once, but several times. Naturally, I refused. I had learned that I was not to be trusted with power."

One of Harry's eyebrows raised. "So instead you end up as Headmaster of on of the leading schools in the world, head of the British legislative and judicial branch, and head of the international governing body. Yeah, well done on avoiding the temptation of power, there."

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore explains the end of the rein of Grindelwald.

"Well, you know what happened next. I won the duel. I won the wand."

"So much for it being unbeatable. Unless, of course, you lied about it really being a duel?"

---

Chapter 35

Dumbledore explains why he didn't want to possess the Hallows.

"The stone I would have used in an attempt to drag back those who are at peace, rather than to enable my self-sacrifice, as you did. You are the worthy possessor of the Hallows."

"But I didn't 'use it to enable my self-sacrifice'. I used it to bring back my parents, Sirius, and Remus. It was purely self-interest. So, what does that little factoid mean to your grand plan, eh?"

---

Chapter 35

Harry's choice from King's Cross.

"I've got to go back, haven't I?"

"That is up to you."

"You know, I think that's the first time you have ever given me a choice regarding my own life and destiny. About time, wouldn't you say?"

---

Chapter 36

Harry and Voldemort face off for the last time.

"I know things you don't know, Tom Riddle. I know lots of important things that you don't. Want to hear some, before you make another big mistake?"

Luna shook her head and spoke up from the watching audience. "Please do be careful, Harry. Despite your being a hero, make sure you do not run afoul of the Evil Overlords List. You're monologuing."

---

Epilogue

The kids are off to Hogwarts.

"Why are they all staring ?" demanded Albus Severus Potter as he and Rose Weasley craned around to look at the other students.

"Don't let it worry you," said Ron. "It's me. I'm extremely famous."

As the kids laughed, Harry added, "He is. For two separate reasons, actually." The kids looked various levels of skeptical, so Harry explained, "First for single-handedly making the Chudley Cannons the second worst team in the league. Second, for being the seventeen year reigning champion in the pie-eating contest."

---

Don't know if it's me, but I saw more snarky comments in this book than the others. Whether that's a function of Harry's increasing age, JKR, or me, though, I don't know.

The following are taken verbatim from the book.

---

Chapter 3

The Order is trying to convince the Dursleys to move.

"Dad," said Dudley in a loud voice, "Dad - I'm going with these Order people."

"Dudley," said Harry, "for the first time in your life, you're talking sense."

---

Chapter 3

The Dursleys are leaving with Hestia and Diggle.

"S-so sweet, Dudders . . ." Petunia sobbed into Dudley's massive chest. "S-such a lovely b-boy . . . s-saying thank you . . ."

"But he hasn't said thank you at all!" said Hestia indignantly. "He only said he didn't think Harry was a waste of space!"

"Yeah, but coming from Dudley that's like 'I love you,'" said Harry.

---

Chapter 5

George and Kingsley arrive at the Burrow after the escape.

"How do you feel, Georgie?" whispered Mrs. Weasley.

George's fingers groped for the side of his head. "Saint like," he murmured.

"What's wrong with him?" croaked Fred, looking terrified. "Is his mind affected?"

"Saint like," repeated George, opening his eyes and looking up at his brother. "You see . . . I'm holy. Holey , Fred, geddit?"

---

Chapter 6

Bill Weasley and Harry discuss the situation.

"Scrimgeour doesn't want to admit that You-Know-Who is as powerful as he is, now that Azkaban's seen a mass breakout."

"Yeah, why tell the public the truth?" observed Harry.

---

Chapter 6

Hermione tries to explain the difference between body damage and soul damage.

"Look, if I picked up a sword right now, Ron, and ran you through with it, I wouldn't damage your soul at all."

"Which would be a real comfort to me, I'm sure," said Ron.

---

Chapter 6

Ron and Harry complain about the work they're being asked to do before Bill and Fleur's wedding.

"It's like being a house-elf," complained Ron in an undertone. "Except without the job satisfaction. The sooner this wedding's over, the happier I'll be."

"Yeah," said Harry, "then we'll have nothing to do except find Horcruxes . . . It'll be like a holiday, won't it?"

---

Chapter 7

Minister Scrimgeour is speaking with the trio about Dumbledore's bequests.

"I noticed that your birthday cake is in the shape of a Snitch," Scrimgeour said to Harry. "Why is that?"

Hermione laughed derisively. "Oh, it can't be a reference to the fact Harry's a great Seeker, that's way too obvious," she said. "There must be a secret message from Dumbledore hidden in the icing!"

---

Chapter 7

The trio are talking the night before the wedding.

"All the same, we should get to bed," whispered Hermione. "It wouldn't do to oversleep tomorrow."

"No," agreed Ron. "A brutal triple murder by the bridegroom's mother might put a bit of a damper on the wedding."

---

Chapter 16

Hermione is chastising Harry on his poor study habits.

"Harry, did you ever even open A History of Magic ?"

"Erm," he said, smiling for what felt like the first time in months: "I might've opened it, you know, when I bought it . . . just the once . . ."

---

Chapter 19

Ron is having a difficult time apologizing to Hermione.

"Rack your brains, Ron. That should only take a couple of seconds -"

---

Chapter 19

Ron is having a difficult time apologizing to Hermione.

"Imagine losing fingernails, Harry! That really puts our sufferings into perspective, doesn't it?"

---

Chapter 21

Ron is less than impressed with Xenophilius Lovegood's cooking.

"Everybody always requests our recipe for Freshwater Plimpy soup."

"Probably to show the Poisoning Department at St. Mungo's," said Ron under his breath.

---

Chapter 25

The trio is talking about their plan to get the sword by giving Griphook a fake.

"Ron, he'd know the difference better than we would!" said Hermione. "He's the only one who realised there had been a swap!"

"Yeah, but we could scarper before he realizes -" He quailed beneath the look Hermione was giving him.

"That," she said quietly, "is despicable. Ask for his help, then double-cross him? And you wonder why goblins don't like wizards, Ron?"

---

Chapter 26

Hermione has glamoured Ron in preparation for the raid on Gringotts.

"There," said Hermione, "how does he look, Harry?"

Ron's hair was now long and wavy; he had a thick brown beard and mustache, no freckles, a short, broad nose, and heavy eyebrows.

"Well, he's not my type."

---

Chapter 27

The trio just jumped off the dragon as it flew over a lake.

"What'll happen to it, do you think?" she asked. "Will it be all right?"

"You sound like Hagrid," said Ron. "It's a dragon, Hermione, it can look after itself. It's us we need to worry about."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, I don't know how to break this to you," said Ron, "but I think they might have noticed we broke into Gringotts."

---

Chapter 28

The trio is talking to Aberforth about Albus Dumbledore.

"Professor Dumbledore cared about Harry, very much," said Hermione in a low voice.

"Did he now?" said Aberforth. "Funny thing, how many of the people my brother cared about very much ended up in a worse state than if he'd left 'em well alone."

---

Chapter 29

Neville is hearing about what the trio's been up to.

Neville laughed gleefully. "What did you do with the dragon?"

"Released it into the wild," said Ron. "Hermione was all for keeping it as a pet -"

---

Chapter 31

Ron expresses concern for the house-elves of Hogwarts.

"I mean we should tell them to get out. We don't want any more Dobbies, do we? We can't order them to die for us -"

There was a clatter as the basilisk fangs cascaded out of Hermione's arms. Running at Ron, she flung them around his neck and kissed him full on the mouth. Ron threw away the fangs and broomstick he was holding and responded with such enthusiasm that the lifted Hermione off her feet.

"Is this the moment?" Harry asked weakly, and when nothing happened except that Ron and Hermione gripped each other still more firmly and swayed on the spot, he raised his voice. "OI! There's a war going on here!"

---

Chapter 31

Percy joins the fight.

"Hello, Minister!" bellowed Percy, sending a neat jinx straight at Thicknesse, who dropped his wand and clawed at the front of his robes, apparently in awful discomfort. "Did I mention I'm resigning?"

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Snape has asked Dumbledore to protect Lily from Voldemort.

"If she means so much to you," said Dumbledore, "Surely Lord Voldemort will spare her? Could you not ask for mercy for the mother in exchange for the son?"

"I have - I have asked him -"

"You disgust me," said Dumbledore. "You do not care, then about the deaths of her husband and child? They can die as long as you have what you want?"

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore reveals he wants Snape to do the deed when it comes to Dumbledore's death.

" You must kill me."

There was a long silence.

"Would you like me to do it now?" asked Snape, his voice heavy with irony, "or would you like a few moments to compose an epitaph?"

---

Chapter 33

Going through Snape's memories, Dumbledore is trying to explain why he wants Snape to kill him.

"I ask this one great favor of you, Severus, because death is coming for me as surely as the Chudley Cannons will finish bottom of this year's league. I confess I should prefer a quick, painless exit to the protracted and messy affair it will be if, for instance Greyback is involved - I hear Voldemort has recruited him? Or dear Bellatrix, who likes to play with her food before she eats it."

 

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Author Notes:

Happy Holidays to all, in whatever form you celebrate.

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