Warning: Character Death

The Thousand Yard Stare

Life's different now. He's different now. Life changes us all, war changes people. War changed him the most. I think back on the boy I met when we were 11 underfed and unloved to the man I see now, his verdant green eyes once full of life, sparkled with hope and curiosity now dead and dull, Hermione calls it his 'thousand yard stare' she says it's a muggle thing, she says that soldiers look like that when they've seen and done too much, I think she's wrong. She doesn't hear him crying, begging in his sleep reliving everything every death, every mistake she doesn't hear him pleading for it to be over. He's my best mate, my brother and he's dying inside you can see it in his eyes. He barely eats and hardly sleeps so I'm waiting, for what I'm not quite sure but I'm waiting for something, anything to happen and my gut says I won't enjoy it when it does.

My family knows there's something up, mum she keeps fussing over him trying to get him to eat he does but I know that most of it will be throw up within 10 minutes and Remus is twitchy and restless, he keeps pacing the library muttering. Hermione is watching me, she thinks she's being covert about it but she's not, the others are too they're watching while I'm waiting, to see what I'll do, how I react. I don't think they've realised not yet, they don't know he's dying. We buried her last week I don't think I've ever seen him cry but he did the tears streamed down his face, his nightmares only worsened after that, that's when I knew. He went to Gringotts the next day before breakfast he didn't say why, he didn't have to I've known him long enough I saw it in his face, the surrender, so I'm waiting for my brother in all but blood to die.

Hermione realised first, she broke down and sobbed herself to sleep on my shoulder she knows too there's nothing to do but to wait, for the inevitable we know we'll never be the same after but we'll cope, we always had something he never realised he did. Family. When Remus realised he fruitlessly tries to talk to him but he just stares with dead eyes till he leaves. Its the night before is when Mum realises she pulls him close and hugs him tight he hugs her back fiercely that's when I know that I'm losing a brother that night. I followed him up when he left knowing I need to say goodbye, he's going to die he needed to know we love him, to know somebody does. It's late when we parted; he has gave me letters to give to everyone in the morning. I head down to the kitchen, I knew I wouldn't sleep trying would be pointless. I was on my third cup of coffee when mum joined me to start on breakfast. I told her I couldn't sleep she refills my cup and starts on breakfast, she didn't comment on the fact I was still wearing last nights clothes. Somehow, I thought, she knows and understands.

I was picking at my breakfast when Remus comes hurtling down the stairs, waking Mrs Black, tears were flowing down his face and he's unsteady on his feet, I'm surprised that he could see to make his way down the stairs. He asked me calmly how long I have known, I didn't need to ask about what that was clear on his face. I tell him two weeks and I said my goodbyes last night. I pull the letters from my robe pocket and laid them on the table, I left. I walked to the nearest bathroom where breakfast and the night before's dinner make a reappearance. I sat on the floor and sobbed for the brother I lost, the boy he once was and the man he became. That's where Hermione found me all curled up crying my heart out, her eyes were red and swollen just like mine are, she wrapped her arms around me and gently led me to her bed where we lay down, curled around each other crying ourselves to sleep over our lost brother. That's how mum found us later curled up in our sleep holding each other tightly not wishing to let go even in our sleep she let us sleep knowing we need it, the comfort of a loved one.

The next few days were hectic I spent most of them avoiding everyone but Hermione who I clung to not wanting her out of my sight for very long. His death hit me hard; knowing it was coming didn't help one bit, and just made it hurt for longer. He had a small quiet funeral where we bury him next to Ginny because she made him the happiest I ever saw him of all the years I knew him. Kingsley insisted that we needed to have a state funeral as well because the public wanted to say goodbye to their hero, the official story of his death is that he was hit by a curse that slowly weakened and killed him in the Final Battle, unofficially he killed himself unable to deal with losing another person he loved to Voldemort and his Death Eaters. The casket with "Harry" in was cremated and the ashes spread over Hogwarts's grounds.

The papers say 'The Man-Who-Lived Lives no Longer' what they don't say is how he died the moment Ginny did. She was his reason for living, for fighting, he died with her it just took his body some time to catch up with his heart. Now don't get me wrong he tried to keep living to grieve, to heal but I think it just hurt too much and cut too deep for that to ever happen. He gave his all to help fix our world but in the end I think he didn't have the strength to fix himself.

I look down at his freshly filled grave and realise that he is where he can be loved and happy now so I smile.

Here lies Harry James Potter

Brother. Best Friend. Hero.

Seeker. Teacher. Leader

May he finally get the Peace he deserves

31st July 1980 – 5th June 1998

So thats that the idea hit me when one evening and wouldn't let up so here you go.

Sorry if there is any part of this that is similar to another fic it was unintentional and coincidental.