The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore

Thesunwascomingup:Thepure,colorlessvastnessoftheskystretchedoverhim,indifferenttohimandhissuffering.Harrysatdowninthetententranceandtookadeepbreathofcleanair.Simplytobealivetowatchthesunriseoverthesparklingsnowyhillsideoughttohavebeenthegreatesttreasureonearth,yethecouldnotappreciateit:Hissenseshadbeenspikedbythecalamityoflosinghiswand.Helookedoutoveravalleyblanketedinsnow,distantchurchbellschimingthroughtheglitteringsilence.

Withoutrealizingit,hewasdigginghisfingersintohisarmsasifheweretryingtoresistphysicalpain.Hehadspilledhisownbloodmoretimesthanhecouldcount;hehadlostallthebonesinhisrightarmonce;thisjourneyhadalreadygivenhimscarstohischestandforearmtojointhoseonhishandandforehead,butnever,untilthismoment,hadhefelthimselftobefatallyweakened,vulnerable,andnaked,asthoughthebestpartofhismagicalpowerhadbeentornfromhim.HeknewexactlywhatHermionewouldsayifheexpressedanyofthis:Thewandisonlyasgoodasthewizard.Butshewaswrong,hiscasewasdifferent.Shehadnotfeltthewandspinliketheneedleofacompassandshootgoldenflamesathisenemy.Hehadlosttheprotectionofthetwincores,andonlynowthatitwasgonedidherealizehowmuchhehadbeencountinguponit.

Hepulledthepiecesofthebrokenwandoutofhispocketand,withoutlookingatthem,tuckedthemawayinHagrid’spoucharoundhisneck.

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