Holly was flying. Above the forest, over the lake, past the boathouse and above the castle. Holly was flying, not with a broom, Hippogriff or dragon, but by herself. She felt completely weightless. She zipped, tumbled, and flipped through the air like a gymnast. A song came to her mind and she immediately sang it out loud.
“I’m soarin’, flyin’, there’s not a star in heaven that I can’t reeaach!” The lyrics from a popular children’s movie High School Musical for some reason seemed to fit perfectly.
As she flew past the Great Hall she saw groups of people huddled together and bodies lying one by one in a row down the middle of the hall. Suddenly the memories started flooding back to her. The Battle of Hogwarts, Fred’s body, two more Horcruxes were destroyed, Snape’s memories, Holly walking into the Forest, Draco being forced to kill her. Holly’s heart broke. The emotional weight that had just landed upon her was too much. She tried to cry but no water came out of her. She was dead. She was flying and dead. What was she? A ghost? A spirit? Where was the light at the end of the tunnel?
Holly changed direction mid-air and flew back to the clearing in the Forbidden Forest. She arrived just in time to hear Voldemort order Draco to clean up his mess. Holly watched as Draco levitated a body – her body- and disappear behind some trees. She heard Voldemort call him back and told him to bring Holly’s body back to him as an afterthought. Draco disappeared back into the trees and returned with the body. Voldemort promptly cast a spell on the body and a projected image of it appeared in the castle courtyard. Voldemort’s voice echoed throughout the silent night.
“Harry Potter. Your precious twin sister is dead. You continue to let people sacrifice themselves for you instead of facing me yourself. Unless you want me to come up to the castle now, come. Be a man and confront your fate.”
Voldemort encased Holly’s body in a protective cage and levitated it to hover beside Nagini’s.
“Go and fetch the half-giant called Hagrid” Voldemort told some of his Death Eaters. He nodded at Draco who left the clearing once again.
Holly flew out of the Forest and searched the boundaries desperately for Draco. She saw him emerge and start walking up a set of stairs beside the boathouse. He made it about halfway up to the castle when he sat on one of the landings and put his face in his hands. Holly floated down and hovered in front of him. All she wanted to do was to make see her, let him know that she was fine. But to him, she wasn’t fine. He had killed her and he would spend the rest of his life living with that guilt. Holly sighed and kissed his forehead. She knew he couldn’t feel it but she swore she saw him relax slightly. Holly wanted to stay there forever, just taking in the sight of him. Forever never came. A white light flashed before Holly’s eyes and she closed them to shield them from the brightness.
When she opened them she was in a dark clearing in the Forest. But she wasn’t alone. She looked around and then down at her own body. James and Lily Potter were standing side by side. Sirius Black and Remus Lupin were standing beside the Potters smiling sadly at each other. Holly was standing in between the two couples, directly across from Harry who was holding a small stone in his hand; The Resurrection Stone. The figures of the dead were neither living nor ghost. They were more solid than a spirit but not as solid as a living person. All of the figures were smiling happily at Harry except her; she still hadn’t gotten over her emotional bombardment. They formed a sort of semicircle around him, his own personal counselling committee.
“You’ve been so brave”
Lily Potter’s voice made Holly jump and listen to the figure of her biological mother.
“You’re nearly there” James added, “We’re so proud of you”
Harry was silent at first then opened his mouth, “I’m so sorry. I didn’t want any of you to die for me.” He turned to Lupin, “And Remus, your son-“
“I’m sorry too. I’m sorry I’ll never get to know him. But he’ll know what I died for and I hope he’ll understand.”
Harry’s eyes turned to Sirius, “I wish we got to spend more time together”
“Me as well, but the time we did have was precious. And I’m always with you Harry, we all are.” Sirius replied.
Finally Harry’s eyes turned to Holly. He shook his head and looked mad at himself, “Holly. I’m sorry most of all to you. I was a terrible brother to you and made our short time together miserable. I still can’t believe you died for me”
“I did what everyone else here did, put my trust in you and tried to protect you. Tried to fight for what we believed in” Holly replied with a slight smile. She could feel Lily and James’ eyes on her but refused to look at them.
“D-does it hurt?” Harry asked hesitantly. He winced as he said it, probably knowing that he sounded childish.
“Dying? Quicker and easier than falling asleep” Sirius replied.
Holly let out a quick laugh, “Well seeing as I was the most recent death out of anyone here take my advice. The most painful part is the anticipation. When the time comes, don’t think about it. Picture your most happy memory and focus on that”
“Thank you Holly.” Harry said. He looked like he wanted to say more to her so she smiled slightly and gave him the ok to continue. “You had your whole life in front of you and yet you kept coming back to help me, after all I did to you. Why?”
Holly sighed, “Voldemort needed to be stopped. If he didn’t no one would be safe. Anddd I guess I wanted to kick some ass with my baby bro.” At this she turned to Lily and James Potter and pointed a finger, “Don’t you dare tell me who is actually the eldest, you’ll ruin my fun.” The both smiled and nodded their heads. Holly quickly turned back to Harry, looking at the love they had for Harry shone in their eyes. It saddened her greatly.
“Stay close to me” Harry whispered. He walked away from the group, dropping the stone as he left. Holly and the others followed him, walking between him and the Dementors, shielding him like Patronuses. Too soon they approached the clearing that Holly had been pushed into half an hour prior. She refused to look at the her dead body in the cage and focused instead on what lay before her. The scene was the same except it was Harry, not Holly, who stood waiting to die.
“It seems I was mistaken, I thought Potter would come” Voldemort was saying to his Death Eaters.
“You weren’t” Harry said, stepping into the clearing. Holly felt a rush of pride as Harry stood confidently in front of Voldemort. She knew he was terrified but he didn’t show any emotion.
“HARRY NO! WHAT ARE YOU DOI-“ Hagrid’s voice was silenced by a flick of Voldemort’s wand. The gameskeeper was bound to a far tree. Holly hoped his brother was still alive as well.
Holly held her breath as she watched Voldemort look at Harry like a snake about to eat it's prey. His red eyes made her blood boil in rage. She and the other figures walked to stand beside Harry, still invisible to the living. They each put a hand on Harry’s shoulders, bracing him for what was to come.
“Harry Potter; The Boy Who Lived, come to die.” Voldemort’s spoken words were the last thing Holly heard before she saw a blinding flash of green light. For the second time that night, the world went dark.