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The Aftermath: We were all correct

by David Haber

Sometime a week before Book 7 came out, someone commented that Harry would die, but then come back. I think most everyone on the site thought it was a silly idea. But I told several people at that time that I thought that just might be the perfect solution, although I couldn't figure out how J.K. could make it work. J.K. did, of course! So, the half of the Harry Potter fans in the world who thought Harry would die were right! And the other half who thought he would live were also right!

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Reader Comments: (Page 39)

Corey: I forgot to explain this in my previous comment, as many people are asking it. You said: "How did Harry's Expelliarmus stand a chance against Voldemort AK? Really sweet but doesn't make since."

This is my theory. Expelliarmus makes your opponent become disarmed, as their wand flys toward you. I think that when Voldemort sent the AK, and Harry did Expelliarmus, Voldy's wand was spun in the air, and I think it made the wand flip and had the curse point back towards Voldemort. So typically, the wand pointed the other direction while spining through the air and the curse went the opposite way. Although I would think that it would be sent towards Harry even if the wand was turned around, I wouldn't know, because it's not like we know for certain that when you send a spell it goes directly the direction the wand is pointing.

That's all I think. Simple, but yet makes some sense.

Posted by Brooke from Carnelian Bay, CA on July 24, 2007 10:59 AM

JKR indicated she would explain why some wizards or witches became ghost and she did. If you remember the discussion he had with the Gray Lady the ghost of Ravenclaw. She stole her mother tiara which gave the posessor great wisdom. She was ed by her Lover the Blood Baron who out of remorse ed himself. So if you commit a selfless act and , you remain on earth as a ghost. This especially true if do attempt to makeup this selfless act.

Posted by Lou from Columbus, OH on July 24, 2007 11:04 AM

To Orlando: THANK YOU for writing that about Snape. I was sick all day with grief and I keep feeling the pain of it in PANGS... Snape's story is eating at me, and I haven't even experienced what he has (deep, unrequited & everlasting love for one person). After knowing that story, and knowing what he sacrificed for so long, how can one not forgive him for being a jerk to people? I agree with everything, except one thing -- I don't believe that Snape d thinking he failed. He got the memory to Harry, right? If he hadn't, Harry would not know he needed to, really, at this point, Snape is the reason, technically, that Harry was able to end Voldemort. He was fearful that he wasn't going to get to Harry in time, but at his last breath, he did... he succeeded at the very end, and not only that, but he got to looking at Lily... so tragic, yes, but these are things I've come up with to set my own soul at ease.

Now, I am rereading the last 100 pages or so of the book, just because, and I've now realized how entirely confused I am! I have gone through ALL the posts again, and I saw some stuff about this, but I didn't find anything that really answered the questions I have (they might be on here, but I missed them, and I apologize for that):

I am TOTALLY confused about the Elder Wand, and also, Harry & Voldemort sharing blood. Remember when he said that Harry lives as long as Voldemort lives, because Voldemort has Harry's blood? Okay, SO, WHY did Harry have a CHOICE to , because... Dumbledore said that as long as Lily's enchantment is alive, so is Harry, right? so why did he even go to Limbo at all? OR, was it that, if Harry chose to , then it would be him choosing to end his mom's enchantment? Did he have that control, to end her enchantment? I guess he did, huh?

Okay, but then even so... he chose to go back, right? Now, when he was back, was he more vulnerable? Because, how could he be, when Voldemort and Harry still had the blood connection. Lily's enchantment was still intact. See, Voldemort's soul was no longer in Harry, so that makes it seem like "ONE LESS POINT FOR VOLDEMORT!" and it just seems like that would make Harry even stronger against Voldemort. so I'm confused, can Harry even as long as Voldemort's alive? I am starting to believe that this IS answered in the book, and in my rapid attempt to get to the end, I missed it. But I'd rather someone tell me exactly what it is, so that I can be sure I'm correct once I read it again.

Okay, so now it gets more confusing - the Elder Wand. When Dumbledore's talking about blood... at that point, it seems like the Elder Wand had nothing to do with anything, JUST at that point, right? It was about the blood connection. I think the only thing the Elder Wand did, was VOLDEMORT'S soul-fragment inside of Harry. I believe that little baby that Harry saw in limbo was the part of Voldemort's soul that lived in Harry for so long. So my question is... and I guess it depends on whatever the answer is to my first question... in the end, what exactly is the significance of the Elder Wand? Of Harry using 'Expelliarmus' and it being used against Voldemort? It wouldn't make sense that he was disarming Voldemort to win the wand, because he (Harry) already realized that he was ALREADY the master of the wand... so, I suppose what I'm wondering is, can someone explain to me what happened in that last battle? Because I missed something.

And the question I specifically would love answered -- did Harry know that, when Voldemort used Avada Kedavra, he (Harry) could use Expelliarmus and the wand would backfire against Voldemort? Did he know that was going to happen? I think it said he did, and if so, how did he know?

Posted by Katie T from California on July 24, 2007 11:13 AM

I'm on my second full reading of the book, because, like the editor here, I was RUSHING through the beginning.

I have lots of thoughts and lots of questions, and the more I read, the more I see. The book has about 50 different layers that have to peeled back.

A couple of questions I have are...

Since headmasters aren't ghosts, they have d, but how can they simultaneously be in the portraits? Is this special magic that is only given to head masters of Hogwarts?

Where was Snapes portrait? It doesn't mention him and says that Dumbledore's portrait was still DIRECTLY behind the desk when Harry took Ron and Hermione upstairs.

We have GOT to know what all happened at Hogwarts while the trio was off hunting horcruxes.

As far as Moody's body goes, I kind of think Umbrage is, if not a eater, no really on the side of the ministry. She is the one that ended up with the locket horcrux and explained it by saying she was a "Selwyn." Selwyn is mentioned in the book as a bad guy. Also, Mad Eye's eyeball is in the door of her takes a really sick puppy to use an ex-Auror's eye to spy on workers while in the Ministry of Magic building.

The book gets better and better the more I reread.

Posted by Roxanne from houston, texas on July 24, 2007 11:45 AM

Also...the creature at King's Cross station was the piece of Voldemort's soul that had been in Harry. Harry felt sorry for his eternal state, but was repulsed at the same time because Voldemort had chose that path. I wonder if this is what he looked like all of the times her was mentioned before he had a body...when Wormtail carried him into the Riddle House, when he was "dumped" into the cauldron in the graveyard. It mentions him being "the size of a baby."

Posted by Roxanne from houston, texas on July 24, 2007 11:48 AM

To Dave Haber

Thanks again for this wonderful Website. I am sure I speak for all of us, who came by - almost each day to check what our fellow Harry Potter Fans had to say on your different topics. We were (and still are..) one great family.

Something Harry Potter readers in the years to come cannot share with each other. Thanks to you, we were able to share our thoughts, our hopes and theories - how the series would end.
You watched over us - kept this site up-to-date - at times corrected us - when we got carried away, also let us tell our feelings.

It took me two days to read HP and the ly Hallows.Like so many of you - I loved it - I cried - and had this empty feeling when I closed the book at the end. I felt like someone close to me had d! But I knew I was not alone... (I know this sounds over dramatic ) and I remembered those few words Dave had written long ago... when the last book comes out...This site shall still be here.

So I returned to your site and I am so thrilled about these 38 pages full of comments! You are ALL ingenious.

I loved the book and right at the moment it is my absolutely favorite Harry Potter book. so many things have already been said and explained - the only think I wanted to comment on is SEVERUS SNAPE. This is what I wrote in February:

As I said before, I have a soft spot for Snape, and I want to refuse till stubbornness that he ed in cold blood Dumbledore. With this statement agreeing with the �entire Snape supporter�s� that he won�t abandon Harry in the last battle against Voldemort, not out of love for Harry, but for Lily and great devotion for Dumbledore!

To Kevin from Wisconsin, who wrote that fantastic article about the "Horcruxes"

To Elisabeth from Australia - who wrote such a fine comment about Professor Snape (did she remember me, when Grindelwald was mentioned?)

To Aditi who let himself be persuaded by me - that even if Snape said Mudblood - he loved Lily all the same

To Orlando - LONG LIVE SEVERUS SNAPE - tragic hero of the Harry Potter series.

And lastly: THANK YOU Jo, for writing such unforgettable books.

Posted by Mistral from Z�rich on July 24, 2007 11:59 AM

i think the scene she bawled her eyes at whilst writing was dobby's, and i think he was one of the 2 that she didn't intend to but did.

i thought snapes would have been a little better, and lupin and tonks were just sort of callously disposed of.

Posted by ginny from london on July 24, 2007 12:01 PM

to Corey from IN- I asked the same question about the thing at Kings Cross and most people responded to me that it was the part of his soul that had been in Harry-- I can see that- I guess that explains why it was a small creature and Harry was not small- he was whole whereas the piece of soul was small (I thought it could have been Snape)- the only thing that I thought about your questions was that Harry's Expell... was stronger than Voldemort's AK because Harry was the true owner of the Elder Wand-

Posted by mary from parkland , fl on July 24, 2007 12:02 PM

Let me also say, to add onto my other post, and just in case anyone tells me that Harry could now because the horcrux was gone, that THIS CAN'T BE TRUE. (I don't think.) What we learn when Harry talks to Dumbledore for the last time, that Dumbledore has always known and doesn't tell Harry until at that moment, is that Harry and Voldemort share blood. THEY SHARE BLOOD, and as you see in quotes I'm about to post, as long as Voldemort is alive, Harry is TETHERED to life. Observe:

page 709
"Precisely!" said Dumbledore. "He took your blood and rebuilt his living body with it! Your blood in his veins, Harry, Lily's protection inside both of you! He tethered you to life while he lives!"

"I live...while he lives? But I thought...I thought it was the other way round! I thought we both had to ? Or is it the same thing?"

skipping to page 710:
"He took your blood believing it would strengthen him. He took into his body a tiny part of the enchantment your mother laid upon you when seh d for you. His body keeps her sacrifice alive, and WHILE THAT ENCHANTMENT SURVIVES, so do you and so does Voldemort's one last hope for himself."
Dumbledore smiled at Harry, and Harry stared at him.
"And you knew this? You knew -- all along?"

Then a bit later, Harry asks about why Malfoy's wand didn't work against Harry in the beginning of the book, and Dumbledore mentions how Voldemort DOUBLED the bond between him and Harry, and how "something happened between those wands, something that echoed the relationship between their masters.
I believe that your 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. So your wand recognized him when he pursued you, recognized a man who was both KIN and MORTAL ENEMY, and it regurgitated some of his own magic against him, magic much more powerful than anything Lucius's wand had ever performed. Your wand now contained the power of your enormous courage and of Voldemort's own ly s: what chance did that poor stick of Lucius Malfoy's wand stand?"

Then Harry says that Voldemort ed him (Harry) with the Elder Wand, and Dumbledore says Voldemort FAILED to him with the Elder Wand...then they talk about the hallows for a while...

Then like the 2nd to last page of that chapter, he tells Harry that Harry has a choice to go back, or stay behind and choose , but that if he goes back, there is a CHANCE that Voldemort can end for good. I'm assuming this refers to whether or not NAGINI is ed, and nothing more, right? But then, I dunno, you'd think that at this point, Dumbledore would just tell him that, so I'm a bit confused about that.

Then there's the whole speech Harry gives Voldemort, which I'm about to go read...but see what I mean? Remember, Dumbledore didn't tell Harry a LOT until the very end, because he didn't want Harry to make the wrong decision. If Harry knew that his blood in Voldemort kept him alive too early, things would have been different. I think the whole Coming of Age thing wasn't true... that's what we're supposd to realize we have found out in the end. It's what Harry finds out.

So Harry goes back knowing he must end Voldemort. But he must know that he can't from Voldemort, so what would happen...would he just go back to the limbo and try again? Or, did Harry only have a choice to go back, because he CHOSE to , but this time, if Voldemort were to Harry, Harry WOULD , but so would Voldemort? So then, wait... I could be solving my own problem... that would make a lot of sense... it must be that Harry's attempt at going back was to END VOLDEMORT before Voldemort could end BOTH OF THEM! Right? Harry had the power to end Voldemort WITHOUT ending himself, but Voldemort would only finish them BOTH off!

Oh, please, I hope that is the answer... is there a flaw in my reasoning?

Posted by Katie T from California on July 24, 2007 12:08 PM

Finally made it through all the comments. As I read DH out loud, I didn't/couldn't skip anything in my rush to finish it. Also, we stopped to discuss things. So, I may have a few answers/theories:

1. Age and Time. JKR said the book is set in 1997, so Harry is properly 17 and it is properly 7 years after she began Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone. In the epilogue, Harry is 36 with an (at least) 12 year old. He and Ginny could have had James as late as 24. Interestingly, with no university, it seems wizards get married and have children younger than we are used to -- James and Lily were only 21 when they d, making them parents at 20.

2. Kreacher. It was specifically mentioned that Harry did not summon Kreacher due to a fear of side-arm apparition by the Eaters. He may have gotten desparate enough to do it at Malfoy Manor, but Dobby showed up instead.

3. Sword. Griphook took the real sword, but because it properly belonged to Godric Gryffindor (not the story Griphook told), the Sorting Hat was able to summon it to be presented to a true Gryffindor.

4. Unforegiveable Curses. When Harry used the Cruciatus Curse on Carrow, we were sure McGonagall would bite his head off. Instead, she said "how gallant" and proceeded to use the Imperious Curse. I think this ties in somewhat with the Greater Good theory.

5. The Veil. I, too, wished for more discussion of the stone archway (for awhile, I thought the resurrection stone may be part of it) and fluttering veil. The description of those that come back with the resurrection stone is as if they are through a veil or that a veil is between them and the real world. The veil is, in my opinion, the way between life and . Only, nothing can bring people back through the veil -- back to life.

6. The Cloak. It is not a shield, as some have asked, but it is impervious to spells that try to affect its magic. So you couldn't successful summon the cloak, but you could stun Harry when he was under the cloak. Perhaps that is why Mad-Eye's incredibly powerful eye worked -- it wasn't a spell but another powerful magical object.

7. Snape. While I am as pleased as anyone that Snape was ultimately good, he was not a pleasant man. He was mean to people other than Harry, he played favorites, his own actions cost him his best friend and the love of his life (remember -- Lily complained about Snape being a Eater in training), he lied to Lily, he attacked Petunia, he would have had no remorse about giving the prophecy had it been Neville and the Longbottoms that Voldemort decided to ... I am not saying he isn't a tragic character, but he was a bad person -- a Eater -- despite his love for Lily. It was only his capacity to feel remorse that saved him.

8. James. All we see of James is what Snape saw. Let's not judge James based on the memories of someone who hates him. We all liked Lupin, Dumbledore, Sirius, etc. and they all liked James. Lily grew to love James despite his early obnoxious (and truly teenage) behavior.

My one disappointment: that they still sort on Day 1. Remember what Dumbledore said: I think we sort too early.

Posted by Becky from Madison, MS on July 24, 2007 12:19 PM

more books i want made:
a book on Severus Snapes life
a book on ted tonks' adventures at hogwarts
a book on lupin, james and sirius when they were at school
a book on dumbledoree and perhaps even one on grindlewald
a book on james, rose, hugo, albus, and lily when they go to school

loved the book but hated the fact that i spent six books hating snape in every single way and then after reading "The Prince's Tale" finding out that he's now my favorite character not in just the seventh but in the whole series

Posted by he who chose not to share his name from unknown on July 24, 2007 12:22 PM

Loved the book and love these comments. If Voldemort performed the AK on Harry that put him in Kings Crossing yet it failed to him....why did he think it would work the second time when they had the face-off?

Posted by jonwash on July 24, 2007 12:25 PM

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