The Sugar Quill
Author: Emily (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Farewell  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

Disclaimer: I own nothing. It all belongs to the wonderful JKR. Much thanks to my great editor, B.


***

The sun is sinking low in the sky above Ashokan


On the last night of their fourth year, Harry, Ron and Hermione were sitting quietly together at the edge of the lake. Hermione's arms were wrapped about her knees, Ron was sprawled flat on his back, and Harry was leaning back on his hands. The three of them wordlessly watched the sun fall behind the curtain of the Forbidden Forest.

The pines and the willows know soon we will part.
There's a whisper in the wind of promises unspoken
and a love that will always remain in my heart
.

Hermione was fighting the urge to throw her arms around Ron and Harry and cry. It was frightening to have to leave them, especially now that Voldemort -she shuddered- was back. Hogwarts felt safe, and Harry and
Ron were safe here. At Hogwarts, Dumbledore could protect them, and they could protect each other. Now all three of them would be away from it for a whole summer. Lots of things can happen over a summer- people can die...

Ron, sitting between his best friends, turned his head from one side to the other to watch them. He had never seen either of them looking so sad or lost. Not that he blamed them. But still... Bloody hell!, he thought, there's no way You-Know-Who's going to make my friends so upset. He slid down to the water's edge.

Harry turned his head back toward Hogwarts and sighed. A summer with the Dursleys was not something to look forward to. He would rather stay at Hogwarts, even though most students now regarded him with suspicion and caution rather than reverence, and even though he would often see the back of head he thought was Cedric's, only to remember the flash of green light...Harry was blinking back the beginnings of tear when a splash of icy water hit him full on.

My thoughts will return to the sound of your laughter,

"Ron!" Hermione shrieked, laughing in spite of the water running down her face and soaking through her robes. "Ron, come here, I'm gonna get you for that one!" She sprinted to the water's edge, scooped her hands in and went chasing after Ron, who was running as fast as he could while falling over with laughter.

"The look-" he gasped, "on your face-ha-priceless!"

By the time Hermione reached Ron, she too was shaking with mirth, and the water was all but gone from her wet hands, which she wiped on Ron's T-shirt. They were both on the ground laughing, and Harry laughed too, running to meet them.

The magic of moving as one,
and a time we'll remember long ever after
the moonlight and music and dancing are done.

The three of them lay there, out of breath and grinning, their troubles forgotten for the moment. Hermione rose and crept back towards the lake, leaving Ron and Harry.

"Death by drowning on June 30th, right Harry? Wasn't that one of Trelawney's predictions?"

"Wasn't it goring by butterflies?" replied Harry as one flitted silently over their heads. They grinned, and fell back into companionable silence.

Will every song we sung stay with us forever?

"I dunno, Harry," said a voice above them. "I'm much more partial to drowning." Hermione released the bubble of water she was guiding with her wand, and Harry and Ron were soaked. Harry looked at Ron. Ron looked at Harry. Hermione looked pleased with herself. Ron winked, and he and Harry were on their feet in a second, and before Hermione knew what was happening, she was aloft, her limbs grasped firmly in two pairs of arms.

Will you dance in my dreams or my arms until then?

"Put me down!" she begged, then, changing her tone, "Ron. Harry. I demand that you put me down this instant."

"I think we ought to throw her in, Harry, don't you?"

"Oh, good plan."

"No. Ron. Harry."

They reached the shore and swung Hermione into the air.

"Oh, nononono, please, it's so cold. This isn't funny, really! Put me down!"

Finally, they relented and Hermione planted her feet thankfully on solid ground.

"Didn't really think we'd throw you in, did you Hermione?" asked Ron, grinning.

"Yeah, we're friends. Would friends do that to each other?" added Harry.

Hermione looked at them, grinning cheekily at each other. Ah, they are so wonderful- what more could you ask for in your friends? she asked herself. Distancing herself from the lake, she looked at them, threw herself to the ground, and smiled.

"Yes."

Under the moon, the mountains lie sleeping,
over the lake stars shine.

The sun had slipped below the horizon, and the stars were beginning to appear over the lake. Harry and Ron flopped down on either side of Hermione.

"Look, there's Betelgeuse," she said, her finger to the sky. "And Rigel, and all the other ones we know. Oh, aren't you glad we took astronomy?" Behind her head, Harry and Ron rolled their eyes and smiled. Leave it to Hermione to remind them of their studies. But for once, Ron agreed with Hermione. It was rather nice to know names for all those stars up there. They fell into silence again, glad to be together.

They wonder if you and I will be keeping
the magic of music or leave them behind
.

They would be leaving tomorrow for a summer apart. Anything can happen in a summer...

Farewell.

//
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