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01 December 2012 @ 01:15 pm
Fic: Don't Look Back for delphipsmith  
1st December is finally here! Welcome to the 2012 round of hp_holidaygen!

Title: Don’t Look Back
Author: ???
A gift for: delphipsmith
Rating: PG
Length: 4000
Character(s): Hermione Granger, Severus Snape, Minerva McGonagall, Lucius Malfoy, Harry Potter
Summary: Hermione Granger never knew King’s Cross station had a library.
Warnings: character death

The door opened; she stepped off the train, and straight in front of the Loans Desk.

Hermione paused for a moment. That couldn’t be right. She had spent... well, an obscenely large amount of her time, as Ron would have put it, in libraries. None of them had train stations within the library. Or maybe they did and she was too busy doing research to notice, she mused. For a split second she had that urge, that wish to turn her head, to look at the station, see if it was really there; but she couldn’t do that. Instead, she walked towards the desk. No point in hanging about.

The Loans Desk was almost dwarfed by the library itself. Hermione had to blink to keep her eyes from watering - white light was reflected everywhere. High marble walls, shining marble floors, and even the desk was made of white marble, twinkling in the light of a thousand - ten thousand - candles, floating all around her. She would probably have not been able to identify the desk if it weren’t for the man behind it, clad all in black.

The man behind the desk was not the one she had expected. That urge to turn around became stronger - perhaps because, even after all these years, she was slightly intimidated with seeing him. But she held her head high, and gave one small cough, just enough to get his attention. She was never one to avoid confrontations, as unpleasant as they were going to be. She couldn’t even be sure it would be a confrontation - such a long time had passed since she had last spoken to her old Potions master, perhaps he had mellowed over the years, became warm and pleasant and... Hermione couldn’t help but laugh at the thought.

Behind the desk, Severus Snape was scowling. “I suppose you find this all so very amusing?” he said, his eyes narrowing in malevolence.

Some things never change. Hermione had to stop herself from taking a step back. Instead, she just raised an eyebrow. “Really?” she asked. “You think this can work on me after all these years? I’m not eleven anymore.”

“I seem to remember your reactions were less than confident for quite a long period of time after that, Ms Granger,” Snape answered, and oh, even after all those years, he had that arrogant sneer in his voice. So unnecessary.

“It’s been Granger-Weasley for quite some time... Professor.”

“Yes. Quite.” He was the one who hesitated now. “Professor.” Oh yes, now the arrogance was joined with contempt in his voice.

“You wasted your time at Hogwarts, I think, being all angry and misunderstood, Severus,” she said, “I had the best time of my life teaching there.” She wasn’t trying to provoke him, just gently poke him. It’s been long enough - he should have outgrown it all.

Maybe time didn’t work quite the same way here, she thought all of a sudden. He wasn’t even forty when he died, after all. Almost a child.

She examined him closely now. Yes, she could see it - where the snake had bitten him, the wounds that had ended up killing him, but not before he gave them the key to victory. Victory... it reminded her of something, it rang a bell, something to do with why she was there. But she couldn’t remember.

Snape, on the other hand, seemed to have had enough. “Were you looking for something, you insufferable child?”

“Child? I’m older than you were when you died.” What was it? What was she looking for? If she could only remember... she tapped her fingers on the desk in annoyance. “So unless you actually grow up in here - or at least, in your case, just grow old, you shouldn’t call me that.” She was looking for something... something important... something she needed... “Anyway, I’m here because I’m looking for something.”

“Yes,” Snape said. “I know. You don’t think I sit at this desk because I enjoy it, do you?”

“Have you ever done something because you enjoyed it?” she couldn’t stop herself.

He snorted. “Don’t presume to know me just because your friend saw my memories once, Ms Granger.”

Her friend... that was it. That was what she came here for. “Where is he?” she asked.

“I’m the Loans Desk, Ms Granger, or perhaps in all your many years you have forgotten how to read? I find books, not foolish men who throw away their lives on a foolish whim.” But he smiled when he said that. That annoying, superior smile of his that she remembered so well and made her feel fourteen again and oh-so-stressed about the next essay and how the exams went and what would Professor Snape’s next insult would be and would that section she added about zombies finally get her an Outstanding from him.

That unpleasant smile that he used when he wanted to make sure that they knew he knew more than they did and revelled in their misery.

That smile that always said, ‘You are asking the wrong question, and I will not answer until you ask the right question.’

Bastard.

“Then find me a book that would help me find him.”

Snape sighed theatrically, but flicked his wand nonetheless. A small note appeared on the desk, and the quill started writing - “This library is organised according to the Dewey Decimal Classification?!”

He raised an eyebrow.

“I mean... the Hogwarts library wasn’t organised by the Dewey Classification, I’ve always wondered, you see, it did seem like a terrible mess at times, even though Madame Pince always knew where everything went, so there must have been some sort of classification system there, but it just looked completely random.”

“You’re babbling, Ms Granger,” Snape answered coldly, which wasn’t an answer at all.

“Right. Sorry.” She picked up the note. “Any chance you could - ?”

He pointed his wand at the billboard. A map of the library appeared on it. She had three floors to climb, and then quite a few shelves to pass through. Better get to it, then.

“Thank you,” she said. He snorted. Hermione shook her head in exasperation, then started walking towards the big doors that separated the library’s entrance from the collection.

“Oh, and Ms Granger. Whatever you do. Don’t look back.”

“Is that what you did?” she asked, her hand already on the handles.

He just snorted again. “Of course not.”

“What are you doing here, then?”

“Beg pardon?”

“At the Loans Desk. How come you were here when I arrived?”

He didn’t answer. When she turned to look at him, she saw his cold eyes were still on her, and his usual scowl and sneer, and then, all of a sudden, something in his face relaxed - almost softened. Maybe some time did pass in this place after all. “You needed someone’s help, Ms Granger,” he said at last. “I doubt you’d have managed to find this book all on your own.”

“Thank you,” she said again. Perhaps she should not have felt so satisfied with the annoyance on his face, but she couldn’t help it. Smiling, Hermione walked into the library, clutching the piece of paper in her hand.

.o0o.


She could smell the dust already from the stairs. Apparently, the third floor was the dusty floor. All libraries had them, of course, but normally these were in the cellars. Where they stored the books that had no more room on the shelves, or weren’t sure they were going to keep - or periodicals. They always kept periodicals in the cellars, and they were always full of dust. Since when did the third floor ever fulfil this function?

She sighed and opened the door. And sneezed.

“Careful, Granger! These are precious books!”

“Sorry, Professor,” she answered automatically, her head still full of the sneeze and her nose still tingling with the dust. “It’s just so dusty - what are you doing here?” she finally caught herself.

Minerva McGonagall looked exactly the same as she did the last time Hermione had seen her, despite the years. Her hair was collected in a bun above her head, her eyes were as vital as ever behind the glasses, and her slightly sharp manner was exactly the same as Hermione remembered. But unlike Severus Snape, this was a welcomed reunion.

“It’s good to see you, Minerva,” Hermione said.

“I am quite delighted to see you as well, Granger, although I was under the impression you were in a hurry?”

“Right, right,” Hermione wrinkled her brow and looked again at the note. It looked like the designation of a book under the Dewey Decimal Classification. Well, it would make sense she was looking for a book - after all, she was in a library. “110... I guess I need the Metaphysics section.”

Minerva looked at her sharply. “You don’t know why you’re here, Granger?” she asked.

“Well, it’s a library, I guess I’m looking for a book.” She looked at the paper again. “I have it right here. The number, that is, not the book - if I had the book, I wouldn’t need to go looking for it, now, would I?”

Minerva didn’t find this at all funny.

“The spell must have gone wrong,” she shook her head. “You’re wasting your time, Granger! You have only a limited amount of time left!”

Hermione started looking around, at the shelves, full of dust and almost collapsing under the weight of the books; at the stacks and stacks of books at every corner; at Minerva, standing there with a worried expression on her face. She turned her head to look back at the doors, perhaps she would find her answer there, but Minerva’s sharp voice made her jump.

“Don’t look back!”

Her old teacher’s expression was almost frightened now.

“Goodness, Ms Granger. Whatever you do, don’t look back.”

“But... it’s just the doors there,” she said, filled with uncertainty. Don’t look back... that sounded familiar. “I could always come back another day.”

Hermione remembered that look on Minerva’s face. She hadn’t seen it in years - long before Minerva had died. There wasn’t a lot of reasons for Minerva to pity her, not after the war was over. The war!

She was here because of the war, wasn’t she? Something to do with the war. But the book was definitely in the Metaphysics section.

“I couldn’t come back another day,” she said. “I have to do this now. Find this book... find this...”

“Come on, Granger, you can do it,” Minerva said.

Why couldn’t she just give Hermione the answer? Why did she have to make everything so difficult? She wasn’t Hermione’s teacher anymore. There was no reason not to help her.

“You could tell me what it is I’m looking for, you know,” Hermione snapped despite herself.

Minerva didn’t answer - instead, she pursed her lips, so tight that there was only the thinnest of lines left of them. Six years as her student, then quite a few years as a teacher under her as Headmistress, and not once did Hermione see Minerva’s lips pursed so thin. No, perhaps there was a time. That time when Harry...

“Harry!” she said. Now she remembered.

Minerva nodded. “Yes, Granger. You need to hurry. He will not stay here much longer.”

She looked worried, but Hermione smiled. She felt more confident now. She wouldn’t forget Harry again. “Thank you,” she said.

“I wish I could go there with you,” Minerva said quietly. “But, alas, this is another journey you need to make on your own.”

“I wasn’t alone,” Hermione corrected her. “It was the three of us, together. All those times.”

“Which will only make this harder.”

Hermione thought for a moment. Behind her, so far away, Ron waited. In front of her, she would find Harry. She held her head high, looking forward at the dark corridors behind the shelves. “No,” she said in the end. “It’s still the three of us. Just... over a greater amount of space, if you know what I mean.”

Minerva McGonagall’s laughter was always a thing to behold.

.o0o.


There was nothing but darkness in front of her. She walked and walked, for what seemed like forever, but there was no light; no light was coming from behind her. She had to fight the urge to turn back, to check whether she could still see Minerva, or the books, or the shelves, or smell the dust; anything but the darkness, the darkness and the echoing of her own footsteps on the stone floor.

But she couldn’t. She mustn’t. Don’t look back.

At last, after forever - and a bit - she could see a light in front of her. The walk was over. She reached the next section. The light grew, slowly engulfing her, but never blinding her. Her footsteps stopped echoing, became softer, calmer. Her heartbeat became less frantic.

She breathed.

Hermione smiled with relief when finally she saw the large shelves. Now all she had to do was fine the correct section. Soon enough, and she was lost in books, emerged in her beloved library.

“110, 110, that should be just about...” Her eye trailed for a moment from the shelf, and her hand tightened around her wand before she even realised she had recognised the man in front of her. “Here.”

Lucius Malfoy looked at her with a vacant expression. Hermione raised her wand slightly higher.

“I don’t suppose you’re here to help me find Harry, now, are you,” she said.

“Not quite,” he agreed. He was being completely civil, acting almost like a gentleman - but then, he would. Lucius Malfoy had not dared utter a single rude word towards her for years before his death. He was only looking at her, looking with slight trepidation, and Hermione imagined her lips probably looked rather like Minerva McGonagall’s now.

“Why are you here, then?”

“To offer you my advice.”

“And you think I would accept it? From you?”

Malfoy’s eyes travelled to her wand, and he raised his. “I had hoped we have managed to put all that... unfortunate business behind us, after all these years?”

“Mr Malfoy,” she said coolly, “I worked on your project in the Ministry because it was a good project, and because we wanted your money. I don’t recall putting any unfortunate business - ” she nearly spat the words - “behind me, especially when that unfortunate business was the death of my friends by your hands.” She raised her wand. She shouldn’t, she knew. Nothing good could come out of it. She didn’t even know if she could perform magic in this - place. It wasn’t even real. But if either of them was going to curse the other, she was going to make sure she would not be on the receiving end of some nasty curse from that despicable man, reformed Death Eater or not.

Malfoy’s grey eyes travelled to his wand, and to Hermione’s surprise, he lowered it. She was even more surprised the next moment, when he let go of it completely, putting it down on a shelf.

“Which is why I have come to offer you my advice,” he said. “I realise I still owe you - quite the debt.” She said nothing. He studied her for a moment. “Turn back. Leave this place.”

“Yeah. You’d like that.”

“I, as they say, have no hippogriff in this race.”

“Then why are you here?”

Malfoy shrugged. “I have already told you. To offer you my advice.”

“Why? What do you care what happens? You’re dead. Your wife’s dead. Your son actually managed to regain his place in society. Thanks to Harry, by the way. What does it matter to you if I get Harry out of here or not?”

“I only wish to prevent you from losing yourself.”

She paused. For the first time in her life, Lucius Malfoy sounded sincere. And wasn’t that exactly what the Unspeakable in the Ministry said? It would be dangerous. Walking between the worlds. One could lose oneself. It was not meant for the living to walk this path. One could lose oneself.

She refused to listen to the Unspeakable’s warnings. She most definitely was not going to turn back because Lucius Malfoy told her to. Not when so much was at stake.

“I thank you for your concern, Mr Malfoy,” she said, slightly more stiffly than she had intended. “But I will continue through that door, if you don’t mind.”

“Very well.” He stepped aside. Behind him was the door, and on it the sign, written in old, peeling paint. 110.

Metaphysics.

She was halfway in before she heard Malfoy’s voice.

“Good luck.”

.o0o.


The door snapped shut behind her. Once again, she was in complete darkness.

“Lumos,” she whispered. Her wand did not light itself. “Lumos,” she repeated, slightly louder, although her voice still shook. Nothing. Perhaps magic didn’t work here after all. ‘Here’ didn’t actually exist, not really, so she shouldn’t be surprised.

How she would have liked her magic to work.

She tensed; was something moving next to her? She thought she heard something... but no, all was silent, except for her breaths, more laboured and loud than she would have liked. She could feel the small hairs at the back of her neck standing up, and the dust was finding its way to her nostrils, and there it was again, that scrapping noise, and if she could only see...!

“Hold on,” she heard a voice. Such a familiar voice. She smiled despite herself, then something went click, and a ball of light appeared out of nowhere.

Harry was sitting on a chair next to a desk. He was looking at her, a huge smile plastered all over his face. In his hand, he held Ron’s Deluminator. “I borrowed it from Ron,” he explained.

“He told me,” she said. “He said you knew it would be dangerous. What were you thinking, following Voldemort’s old hints like that?” her anger came bursting out, how irresponsible he was, how reckless. But then she forced herself to calm down. “Anyway, Ron said he hoped it could help you, could prevent you from...”

“It did,” Harry said immediately, still smiling. “None of us would have got out of that place alive if it weren’t for that thing.” He threw the Deluminator at her. “You should give it back to him.”

“No,” she shook her head. “You do that.”

He furrowed his brow. “Er, Hermione, I’m not sure if you’re quite aware of it, but I’m...”

“You’re not dead,” she said. “They’ve recovered your...” She wasn’t going to say body. “You’re still alive.” Just barely.

“And this is...?”

She waved her hand around. “Magic.”

Harry laughed and got up. “Yeah, I guess it’s better we don’t sit around while you explain all about Perwinkle’s Fifth Law of Magical Limbo or something like that.”

“It’s better we don’t sit around at all,” she pointed out. “The magic could end at any time.”

“We don’t want that,” he agreed. But she knew him well - too well. There was something he wasn’t saying.

She crossed her arms and looked at him sternly. Harry, of course, just laughed again. “You should get on that train before it leaves,” he said.

“And you?”

“I’ll be boarding a different train.”

“No.”

“Hermione...”

“No! You think I did all this - ” she flailed her hand, trying to find some way to express what this was - “just so that you could give up on me?!”

“I’m not giving up, Hermione.”

“Really? So what’s all that nonsense about boarding a different train?”

He put his hand in his pocket, and pulled out - a ticket. A train ticket. “Got my name on it, and everything,” he said, still smiling. “Look.”

“Doesn’t mean anything. Nothing here means anything!”

“I know,” he said. “It’s all in my head. Well, our head, I guess, now.”

“So throw that ticket away.”

Harry looked at the ticket for a moment, then at her, then sat down back in his chair. “No,” he said quietly.

“Why not?!”

“Because my time’s up. That’s just the way it is. I’m not going to run away from death. That’s the point, Hermione. It’s always been about that.”

They looked at each other for just a moment longer. Harry’s bright green eyes, always under the glasses, and he was challenging her, she knew that. She knew him. She knew he meant it.

She could have brought up Ginny, the kids, the grandchildren, but what would be the point? She knew Harry, and when he got an idea into that thick head of his, he could be the most stubborn man in the world. The most infuriatingly stubborn man in the world.

“That’s not how it was supposed to go,” she said at last, almost in a whisper.

To her surprise, he just laughed. “You know, after everything we’ve been through, I think there could have been worse ways for it to go,” he said, and she couldn’t help it, she was laughing with him, with tears of mirth in her eyes, because despite everything, it was so very funny. He was right, of course. Out of everything that could have happened, all those years, this really wasn’t the worst way for Harry’s life to end. But still, she couldn’t help but cry.

He hugged her, so familiar, and she closed her eyes and let the tears out.

She only opened her eyes again when she heard his voice. “That’s your train.”

The steam engine in front of her was scarlet. “Really?” she shook her head in amusement.

“Hey, don’t knock it. That’s one hell of a train.”

“Yeah.”

“Better get on board,” he said gently. “You don’t want to miss it.”

“And you?”

“Oh, I don’t think I need to wait for my train much longer.”

She nodded. “I just can’t believe - I can’t quite imagine it. Not seeing you again. Ever again.”

He laughed. “Oh, you’ll see me again. I don’t think anyone can do anything about that, no matter how good a witch you are, Hermione. But just to make you feel better - look who the driver is.”

She looked. She wondered how she didn’t notice him before - with his long white hair and long white beard and that ridiculous, ridiculous hat, Albus Dumbledore stood out a mile away, even when he was all tucked away inside a scarlet engine. Dumbledore smiled and gave an enthusiastic wave, and she could almost hear his voice, saying something ridiculous like that first feast at Hogwarts, when they were eleven years old.

“See?” Harry asked, delighted. “Think about it as a chance to catch up with him.”

“What about you?”

“Oh, we’ve caught up years ago.”

“No, you stupid - ! I meant, your train.”

“It’s not actually a train,” he told her in a mock secretive voice. She punched him lightly on the shoulder, because how could she reply to that? He just laughed more.

“Harry...”

“You really should board your train now.”

There was finality in his voice. She didn’t want to hear. But she couldn’t wait there. She still had plenty to do. She looked at him, hesitant for just a moment, and then they moved at the same time, hugged at the same time, and the moment was over, he led her to the train, she climbed the step, and the door closed behind her.

And then, recklessness took over her, for the first time in her life. Out of the window, she looked back at the platform.

Harry was there, waving her goodbye, as the train left the station and he became smaller and smaller, a dark silhouette surrounded by white marble, and then he was gone.
 
 
 
mollywheezy: Gryffindor Womenmollywheezy on December 1st, 2012 03:26 pm (UTC)
So original and well-written. Brilliant! :)
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:38 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :D
minervas_eule: my Minervaminervas_eule on December 1st, 2012 04:08 pm (UTC)
How surreal, and comforting at the same time. I love it how we learn at least something about their lives in little hints...
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:39 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I was going for 'and there's a whole lifetime of stories' with it, I'm glad it translated well :D
mama_pyjamamama_pyjama on December 1st, 2012 04:25 pm (UTC)
Wow, a real ghost world, and a beautiful blend of Harry and Hermione's sub-conscious. This was lovely piece of writing - each of the teachers was so clearly drawn.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:40 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I don't often write the teachers, so that's a relief ;)
#!/usr/bin/girl: librarydelphipsmith on December 1st, 2012 04:31 pm (UTC)
[Part 1 - I had so much to say that LJ made me break it into two comments!]

Wow -- not only am I the first to get my gift (::gloats::) but it is wondrous indeed!!! Mystery author, you rock :) You have written a bittersweet tale of mystery, friendship, loyalty and love, with (of course) a Hermione determined to Figure Things Out -- and all set in a fantastical, mysterious, enticing library that I would give my eye teeth to visit (ah, but perhaps I shall someday!). Not to mention that you've linked in ancient myths like Orpheus and Eurydice, Lot's wife, etc. -- I've always been fascinated by retelling of myths and fairy tales, so this is an extra extra bonus.

I love that Hermione meets the people who have affected her life the most as she makes her way towards her goal, and the glimpses we get of what has happened to them all in the intervening years add a nice richness and complexity. Truly, I am a lucky recipient, and could not have asked for more. Thank you!!!

...she held her head high, and gave one small cough, just enough to get his attention...

Which of course sounded nothing like "Hem, hem." LOL! This mental picture amuses me greatly, of her standing there while Snape is busy scratching away on a piece of parchment or something.

“I’m the Loans Desk, Ms Granger, or perhaps in all your many years you have forgotten how to read? I find books, not foolish men who throw away their lives on a foolish whim...”

No doubt he finished the sentence mentally with "...the dunderhead." And ha! as if Hermione would EVER forget how to read :)

That smile that always said, ‘You are asking the wrong question, and I will not answer until you ask the right question.’

LOVE this.

“I mean... the Hogwarts library wasn’t organised by the Dewey Classification, I’ve always wondered, you see, it did seem like a terrible mess at times, even though Madame Pince always knew where everything went, so there must have been some sort of classification system there, but it just looked completely random.”

You and me both, Hermione, you and me both...

Apparently, the third floor was the dusty floor. All libraries had them, of course, but normally these were in the cellars.

Heh. Yes, indeed. Clearly you have done your research, Mystery Author...

She was here because of the war, wasn’t she? Something to do with the war. But the book was definitely in the Metaphysics section.

Great job the way the reader is drawn in, with little hints at each stage so that slowly things become clear, and the reader and Hermione figure things out together.

Edited at 2012-12-01 09:19 pm (UTC)
#!/usr/bin/girl: librarydelphipsmith on December 1st, 2012 04:32 pm (UTC)
[Part 2]

“I wasn’t alone,” Hermione corrected her. “It was the three of us, together. All those times.”

“Which will only make this harder.”

Hermione thought for a moment. Behind her, so far away, Ron waited. In front of her, she would find Harry. She held her head high, looking forward at the dark corridors behind the shelves. “No,” she said in the end. “It’s still the three of us. Just... over a greater amount of space, if you know what I mean.”


::wipes leaky eyes:: Oh, I can just hear her saying this. Beautiful. ::eyes leak more::

Hermione imagined her lips probably looked rather like Minerva McGonagall’s now.

*snerk* I always imagined that as Hermione got older she too would master the Eye of McGonagall. And the Thinning of the Lips.

“Which is why I have come to offer you my advice,” he said. “I realise I still owe you - quite the debt.” She said nothing. He studied her for a moment. “Turn back. Leave this place.”

Oooh...the mystery thickens. Is he really paying his debt? Or once again trying to trick her? It's so difficult to know when to trust a Malfoy...

“I, as they say, have no hippogriff in this race.”

Ha! Brilliant. Wizardy adaptations of Muggle sayings are such fun, and this one is very clever :).

“Because my time’s up. That’s just the way it is. I’m not going to run away from death. That’s the point, Hermione. It’s always been about that.”

::snif::

And then, recklessness took over her, for the first time in her life. Out of the window, she looked back at the platform...

Splendidly ambiguous ending! Is defying the instruction not to look back a sign of independence and courage? The three of them have always defied the odds to stick together, so of course how could she leave Harry without looking back? But other myths that incorporate this idea (e.g. Lot's wife, Orpheus and Eurydice) record pretty severe consequences. I believe that, now that she has completed her quest and said her goodbyes, it's safe to look back and carry away with her one last glimpse of her best friend.

Now I'm going to go read this again...
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:41 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm so glad you enjoyed it, I was a bit worried with my choice of theme so I'm glad it worked for you ;) And ha, I didn't think about Lot's wife at all, but you're absolutely right, it works with that story too!
author_by_night: cool_largeauthor_by_night on December 1st, 2012 04:43 pm (UTC)
I love Hermione's version of In Between, and how well this was written. I adore how you ended this.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much :)
Feather Quill: Stock bridge lightsfeatherxquill on December 1st, 2012 06:19 pm (UTC)
This is wonderful. Original and sad and cathartic all at once. I love your exploration of the magical world's netherworld of sorts, and your wonderful characterisations, escpecially Harry, accepting his death calmly. Just beautiful.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:42 pm (UTC)
Thank you! Yeah, I imagine by the time he's old, Harry would be able to accept death reasonably well ;)
primeideal.dreamwidth.orgprimeideal.dreamwidth.org on December 2nd, 2012 12:22 am (UTC)
I grinned at the first Dewey Decimal namedrop. Excellent detail to include. :D
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:42 pm (UTC)
Haha thank you! Although that one's all DelphiPSmith's, she wanted libraries! :D
alicia.: pic#110903092aliciadances on December 2nd, 2012 02:37 am (UTC)
This was so beautiful, and I loved how true it stayed to all the characters. Of course Harry would greet death like an old friend, and of course Hermione would do everything she could to save him. Lovely.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Thank you! They would, wouldn't they...
忘れな草: reading and researchingwasureneba on December 2nd, 2012 04:39 am (UTC)
This was absolutely beautiful! I love Hermione's limbo, and her interactions with the people who have most influenced her. And the ambiguity at the end is just fantastic. What a great story.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much! :D
Lucie: locketlucie_p on December 2nd, 2012 12:55 pm (UTC)
That was lovely. A great idea and brilliant execution with all those little details absolutely in-character. Thank you for writing this.
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Thank you! ;)
DoraeAzure: Shinydoraeazure on December 6th, 2012 12:51 am (UTC)
This was just marvelous. So much detail, especially in regards to Harry and Hermione’s characters. And very well developed for such a short story. I absolutely adore this. Well done!
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
kellychambliss: Xmaskellychambliss on December 22nd, 2012 01:16 pm (UTC)
A clever and inventive fic, with each character so sharply-realized. As minervas_eule says, "surreal and comforting."
pitry: Microwavepitry on January 5th, 2013 10:43 pm (UTC)
Haha, thank you!