Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Harry Potter Countdown: An end of an era and a challenge!
Each Wednesday until Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows part 2 comes out I'm going to dedicate a post to an aspect of the series. Anyone who wants to join in is welcome, just let me know in the comments!
Today's topic is: Writer's Choice!
So here we are at the final Harry Potter Countdown post and the day (at time of posting) I get to watch the final installation of the epic and beloved Harry Potter series. I wanted to do something a little special for this post and have it specifically tie in with the conclusion we are all so soon to see, and I think I may have found a topic to do it justice.
See, I really enjoyed most of the final book but that horrible final chapter really put a dampener on it for me. I always say that I'll skip it when I next read the book, but it doesn't seem right to finish with an entire chapter still sitting there waiting to be read so I read it and then feel like tearing out my hair. So since the conclusion of the film is looming which signals the end of my childhood, I thought I'd concentrate on the beginning of their adult life too, and write a 5 years later bio for some of my favourite characters. I should make it clear here that these are all works of my imagination and while I've taken some facts (like Quidditch team names) from the Harry Potter series or the other book released about the series, most of it is complete fabrication on my part.
Harry still has people turn around and stare whenever he walks past them on the street, but nowadays it's rarely because of his role in saving the world from Voldemort. The story ran rampant across the Wizarding Press Network for a solid six months before it began to calm down, but once it petered out Harry seemed to have access to a life of solitude and normality that he was quite unused to. In a bid to escape the Quick-Quills of looming reporters Harry spent the first year after Voldemort's death travelling the world, the more hidden and secluded from European news the better. Ginny accompanied his for the first month during her summer holidays, but it quickly became evident that their holiday styles clashed dramatically. Seven years of fighting dark magic and dastardly villains made lying on a beach for 6 hours rather difficult, and after one month and countless petty arguments they decided to take a break until Harry made his way back to England in 10 months time.
After a year avoiding all but the most obscure and old-fashioned of magic communities Harry craved the one part of magical life that had come to him easier than breathing. After two months of intensive training back in England Harry was signed up to the junior side of the Caerphilly Catapults (Wales) where he quickly proved he was more than just "the boy who lived". At around the same time that he started playing for the Catapults Ginny began training with the Holyhead Harpies (Wales) and they decided to rekindle their faltering relationship. It continued shakily for another year until Harry was offered the opportunity to captain the Toyohashi Tengu (Japan) on an unprecedented pay level. Their distance, even with their magical transportation options, proved too much and 2 and a half years after Voldemort's defeat they decided to end it for good.
At this point in time Harry is still captain of the Tengu, but after a stupendous turn as seeker in the Quidditch World Cup playing for England there are at least 10 different teams from across the globe trying to encourage him to switch to their teams. There is no news yet on whether he'll move on somewhere new but with the strength of the Australasian branch of Quidditch growing each year there is every possibility that he'll stay where he is, or at the very least move to a team within this region.
He has spoken several times with press about his future plans after retirement. It seems a coaching or commentating job is low on his career aspirations and he's considering a move into the Aurors (which happily takes new recruits up to the age of 30) among other varied positions.
The Weasley Family:
The death of Fred shook the entire Weasley family, but they wouldn't be the family we know and love so dearly if they didn't bounce back with their usual strength and resilience. In the chaos that reigned over the Ministry after Voldemort's final demise Arthur decided to end that chapter of his life and move on to something that'd make him happier and keep better hours. With the help of George as a silent partner, Arthur opened his very own muggle emporium in Diagon Alley (while the properties were still nice and cheap) where he spends his days extolling the cleverness of muggles to his customers as he attempts to sell muggle artifacts and operate an artifact repair shop in the back room. The gold isn't pouring in, but with the destruction of Voldemort people seem more open to quirky muggle items so as well as keeping afloat he even managed to spring for a holiday to Australia with Molly to visit her distant family members?
Molly struggled with the death of Fred but she was kept busy with the arrival of Remus and Tonk's son Teddy for her to care for. Andromeda, still struck with grief over the passing of her husband and daughter, didn't feel up to the responsibility of caring for him alone, so she moved into a cottage built 300m from the Burrow. The two women have helped each other greatly through their grief and have showered more love and attention on young Teddy than he could ever require. United through grief and a shared motherhood, the two women are inseparable and proving to be more than a little trouble for Arthur.
George kept Weasley Wizard Weezes open in Diagon Alley, which he runs with Lee Gordon, but held off on opening a second store in Hogsmeade until last year. For the first year or two after Fred's death friends and family of George thought that the spark seemed to have left George's eyes, and it's true that he didn't create any new or unique jokes or tricks in that time, but a reconnection with Angelina Johnson brought the sparkle back. They're currently engaged and have just bought a house together in Godrick's Hollow.
Bill, Charlie, Ginny, and Percy all remain happy and healthy and moving upwards in their careers. Though they've all spread across the country for work or new families there is a standing invitation for Weasley family dinner every Sunday and more often than not they all make it back for it each week.
The transformation Neville went through in his final year at Hogwarts went unnoticed by no-one and while many expected him to move on to a ministry role as an Auror or to take on a role as a professor, he instead decided to train as a herbologist, dedicating his efforts towards hybrid plants which could potentially cure or aid previously incurable maladies. Currently he is working for the herbology department attached to St Mungo's and is working on a natural antidote to aid werewolf victims' (like Bill) scars.
After an impromptu reunion of the DA last year Neville decided to open a DA style defence class as a form of rehabilitation for St Mungo's inhabitants. His natural leadership and understanding of the difficulty of successfully learning the spells and charms has made him a brilliant teacher and he's considering opening up classes for the general public on one or two other nights in the week. Since there is no current threat of dark magic the lessons are more for fun and variety but Neville maintains that constant vigilance is key to survival, and what's fun now may save your life down the track.
In his spare time Neville kicks back in his flat near the hospital with his flatmate Luna and occasionally takes in a show by the latest witch or wizard band doing the rounds.
Aside from living with Neville and helping out with his classes now and again Luna is working alongside her father on the Quibbler. After the decimation of their house Xenophillius opted to move to larger premises with a separate little cottage for himself attached to the back. Luna joined him on her first year out from Hogwarts and has shown a proficiency for writing insightful and delightful articles on a variety of topics, raising the Quibbler even higher in the esteem of the wizarding public. The Quibbler has taken on a new direction sparked by the popularity of the tell-all Harry Potter story so many years ago. While there are still a fair few articles dedicated to Dinkelwitz and Shrunder-roots the magazine the mission statement of the magazine is to never let a tyrant like Voldemort harness the press again, the truth will be told and no amount of threats will change that.
Hermione Granger (and a little Ron thrown in for good measure):
The first thing Hermione did when the dust settled and Voldemort's death was verified was head to Australia and search for her parents. Using her exceptional witchcraft she managed to track them down to a small town in rural South Australia and return all their previous memories to them. Ron had elected to stay with his family while they dealt with Fred's death, and after two months spent touring Australia with her parents Hermione raced back to London and into Ron's arms. Hermione went back to school to finish her seventh year and after a fair bit of cajoling she managed to convince Ron to finish his education with her. Together they were elected head boy and girl and Ron was elected captain on the truncated Quidditch season (even with magic the pitch took awhile to recover). These two honours, combined with the three 'Outstanding Sevice Awards' he now had in the trophy room, meant that once and for all he could finally step out of his brother's shadows!
After school Hermione went on to work in both the international relations (where she stood as a silent ambassador for the UN- only the UN Secretary knew of her role) and muggle relations departments where she cohesively organised a more logical and smooth structure of roles. She's become an integral asset to the Ministry, and while friends and colleagues have suggested that she set her sights at the top job she assures them she's happy in the area she's in. Her work in the Ministry keeps her close to Ron, who is still in training to be an Auror, and together they travel to and from their tiny little flat (though Hermione has remedied that problem slightly-thank god) in the centre of London. Apart from their usual silly arguments, the most popular being who came on to whom (always started by Ron), their relationship is almost sickeningly strong, but I suppose surviving the Dark Lord together will do that!
I had hoped to get a few more bios done (Hagrid was to come next) I've run out of time and I'll have to leave it as is. If you want to take part in this final week and are hunting for something to do then consider writing a couple of bios for your favourite characters! Feel free to tell me if you feel like one of the characters should be doing something different with their lives, I know that a few of my careers fly in the face of what J.K has said they end up doing during interviews. Ultimately I just picked careers that seemed right to me, careers that matched their personalities and hobbies and skills. I also made it only 5 years because I didn't really want to have to think about families (the original final chapter ruined that for me) but if you decide to write your own bios don't feel like you have to comply with that! Talk about what they're doing as 100 year olds (do they still catch up regularly?) or what they do directly after the conflict with Voldemort, or anything really! I'd love to hear your personal insights into what lays in store for these wonderful and familiar characters.
Finally, a big thanks to everyone who has taken part in the Harry Potter Countdown or has read and commented on these posts. They've been a delight to write each week and I'm a little sad that this marks the end of them. If you have any ideas of another series or theme I should use for a similar post challenge/feature let me know because I'll definitely have a massive void to fill in the coming weeks!