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20 July 2007 @ 04:48 pm
all the difference in the world  
Elrond is being a little...odd.  I hope he hasn't contracted a virus, because that would be a real pain.  He just doesn't like it when I try to change between windows, and actually trying to get a page to load—you'd think I was martyring him. 
It's raining again, but since I love it when the rain beats so hard on the skylights, I'm good with it.  For the time being.  Not that rain will matter tomorrow, at least, not once the postman comes.  Don't want our Deathly Hallows...es getting soggy, but once they arrive I'm not going to be moving for at least six hours. 

David was telling us all sorts of stories yesterday, about leaked copies and reviews and angry, suing lawyers.  Myself, I can't see it.  We go through this whole malarkey every time a Harry Potter is published and it is beginning to pall.  (On the other hand, of course, it's rather cool that for once all this ridiculous fuss is being made, not over a celebrity or a film or an album, but over a book.)
Anyway, it doesn't take away from the fact that in eighteen hours or so I will be reading the last book...still a little conflicted about whether I want it to be over or not.  I wonder how the internet communities will survive; a lot of Lord of the Rings ones died the death after the excitement of the films faded.

I always intended to post a list of predictions, so that I would have a record and be able to see just how wrong I was, but I never really got round to it, so this is me rambling about what I think and/or hope will happen.  Anyone's guess is as good as mine, but in case people are very picky about spoilers and predictions, I'll use a cut =)

Like pretty much everyone else, Snape's fate is one of the major questions I have.  Part of me thinks that Dumbledore will be vindicated, that his trust won't have been betrayed; that's what I want to happen.  There is, however, another part of me that is thinking that Rowling has gone out of her way to make her heroes human and perhaps Snape just is that sneaky.  My instinct is that Dumbledore was right, even though his reasoning may have been a little weak for my liking.  I'm also divided on whether Snape'll survive or not—his possible death could be either a sacrificial one if he was on AD's side all along, or come as a judgement.  On the other hand, living with his crimes could also be a form of judgement, whichever way his morals go.

If Snape might sacrifice himself to save Harry or another, Wormtail pretty much has to.  It isn't likely that JKR would leave the life debt plot-point hanging...on that note, did we ever get it cleared up as to whether or not Weasleys Anonymous owes Harry a few, too?

After the slight let-down of the prophecy in OotP, I'm hoping we get to hear something good about Harry's parents.  There has to be some reason that causing their deaths made Snape turn; Snape-loved-Lily never really appealed to me and looked even more unlikely after OotP, but there must be more to it than Snape-was-peeved-because-he-owed-James-a-life-debt-and-now-could-never-pay-it.

The Horcruxes: I still don't think Harry is one.  He could hardly kill Voldemort after destroying himself, could he?  I'm going to stick with the locket that was found in Grimmauld Place in OotP, and—with less confidence—Rowena Ravenclaw's wand, otherwise known as that-wand-on-the-faded-cushion-in-Ollivander's-window. 

Even if Harry doesn't return to Hogwarts, I reckon some of the action will take place at the school.  It's possible Voldemort concealed a Horcrux there, I suppose...or that he'll just attack it to take over as a base.  In that case, the DA are going to see fighting—and either have to form a kind of Resistance, escape, or be held as hostages; even though the books are largely Harry-centric, I really hope she doesn't ignore everyone else(for one thing, all one long Horcrux-hunt doesn't really appeal, although JKR could probably make it work), and Ginny's going to need something to distract her from the fact that the trio are heading off and leaving her behind.  She and Harry are so going to get back together.  Providing they survive long enough.  Oh, help, sudden thought: what if Harry does end up having to go to her funeral?  Dramatic irony and all that... 

Harry's going to need some help in finding those Horcruxes—because whatever Dumbledore may have said about Harry's blood being far more valuable (having spent some time wondering why that should be the case, given that the prophecy was actually no more than a catalyst and that Dumbledore could have actually done the deed himself; I now think it must have some connection to that odd smile of AD's at the end of GoF when Harry spoke about Voldemort's embodiment using Harry's blood) the professor was still far more capable and powerful.  Harry doesn't even know how to tell when a Horcrux has been deactivated, for goodness' sake.  He'll probably have to research what places were of particular significance during the first war, and hope that Voldemort hasn't re-taken them...the places of concealment tend to hold as much significance as the objects themselves, presuming that only the diary was left in the keeping of a Death Eater.  How many people is Harry going to have to nearly kill to get to them, though?

Oh, and Draco!  I'm really looking forward to seeing where he and Narcissa go.  They're not nice people, and—if I was a betting person—I would bet a year's fees that neither Hermione nor Ginny is suddenly going to find him irresistably attractive, but I think they do have a fairly good chance at redemption.  What ends up happening with Draco depends a lot on what ends up happening with Snape; just where did they go after they escaped from Hogwarts?  I'd also like to see what choices the rest of the Slytherins make—I'll be very disappointed if they turn out to be as one-dimensional as they have been so far.  I had high hopes of Zabini and/or Nott, but so far nothing is forthcoming. 
Which reminds me—Harry  has got to be the most unobservant person I have ever heard of.  Seriously.  Popular opinion, and the veidence of the books, seems to stick to the idea that, however big or small Hogwarts is, Harry's year has about 40 students.  Forty.  That's well under twice the size of me form class, that's 20% of my year.  And yet, while by second year I could tell you who all 100 of the girls were, and after another year or two do the same for practically all 100 boys, Harry managed to reach his fifth year without knowing Susan Bones' name, and his sixth without knowing either Zabini or Nott.  I don't care how insular he is—he sat in class with them probably every day for five years and he didn't even manage to pick up on their names!  He may be a hero, but there's no denying the boy has issues. 

Either Dudley or Petunia will do magic (and I hope we get more of talking-about-magic! Petunia...she's so much less of a caricature in those scenes.)  Something will happen at Bill and Fleur's wedding...I don't want them to die either.  I can't help it.  I don't want to see couples separated.  Except the evil partnership of Umbridge and Fudge.  Kill them all!!

I really have no idea what the Deathly Hallows actually are—the religious connotations bring up "graveyard" but I doubt it's that.  Is "hallow" even a noun?  The titles usually are a thread running through the stories, not necessarily of prime importance at all times—but perhaps this will be different.

All the talk of a "bloodbath" has me pretty disturbed, the will he/won't he question of Harry's death especially.  On the one hand, I can see how it would be...I don't know...an appropriate literary device—redemption through sacrifice and all that.  On the other hand, there's been enough flippin' sacrifice in this series; Harry deserves some happiness; if he dies I will cry and cry and probably not read the books again (and leave the fandom) and JKR will most likely get death threats.  At least.  Not from me, mind you, but there are some slightly craaazy people out there.  If Hermione, Ron or Ginny were killed I would be really upset, but not, I think, on the same level as if Harry died.  He's the narrative centre, we see his world through his eyes...I just can't imagine it without him.
I don't want Neville, Luna, McGonagall, any of Harry's other classmates or any of the Weasleys to die, but I think I could cope with any of them.  Remus and Tonks I really, really want to survive.  It wouldn't be fair if they didn't!

Who I think actually has a hope...for some reason, I can't see Luna dying.  She needs to be around in the smoking ruins, comforting people as only she knows how.  I think Neville will end up duelling Bellatrix; either he will die or he will have to come to terms with the fact that he killed her.  Or, alternatively, that he couldn't.  I'm getting splinters on that one =)
I don't think she would kill off either Ron or Hermione...but she cried when she finished.  That worries me a lot.  Seriously, does that woman realise how much anxiety she is causing worldwide at the moment?!?
At least one teacher (possibly Hagrid, although I'm not as convinced on that one as I used to be; possibly McGonagall or Flitwick) is going to die, very likely more.  Similarly, I think at least one of Harry's classmates is going to be killed.  I really hope we are shown just why Lavender and Parvati were Sorted into Gryffindor—there've been hints, but I'd like a bit more.  Unfortunately, it's more likely that the Patils (who were taken out of school at the end of Half-Blood Prince) will be mentioned-rather-than-witnessed casualties.  There will be a lot of these, I imagine: people's parents (the Tonkses?) and quite a few pupils and minor members of the Order.  In other words, if your name is Vector, Corner, Creevey, Macmillan, Chang, Jones, Wood, Sinistra, Turpin or Doge, I'd be getting nervous.  Natalie McDonald, on the other hand, is almost certain to make it through.
After all their near escapes, I don't think the Weasleys can escape—I'd say Percy is in fairly dangerous territory, whether or not he comes back to his family, but again I'm not as dogmatic as I was.  I don't think Mr. Weasley, Bill, Ron or Ginny are going to be the token-dead-Weasley, but I can't decide whether Mrs Weasley's bit after her Boggart scene is foreshadowing or double bluff.  We'll see.

I want to see Lupin exterminate Greyback (with perhaps a little assistance from Bill—he was always such a handsome little boy, after all) or else...do JKR's werewolves have that pesky silver intolerance?  If so, I can't decide whether offing Greyback shouldn't be part of Wormtail's penance.  Or should Ron get Wormtail?  So many choices.

Random things I'd love cleared up...why did Dumbledore have James' Cloak anyway?  Just what did happen to Sirius' motorbike?  Does Fawkes have any relevance besides the obvious?  What's going on with Filch and Madam Pince?  Is Dumbledore's Chocolate Frog card important?  How big is Hogwarts?  What's the sterling/galleon exchange rate?  Just how did James get to be Head Boy when Remus was Prefect?  Why is so much emphasis placed on Harry having his mother's eyes?  Who was that enormous blonde Death Eater—a random Yaxley or Avery, or Narcissa Malfoy a la Polyjuice?  Does Ginny get to call Voldemort "Tom" to his face?  And just when does Ron get a clue?!?

The much-discussed former last word (scar) and epilogue have me intrigued.  If the resolution of Ron and Hermione's story is that they went out together for a year or two in their late teens/early twenties, broke up, married an Unspeakable and a really good Quidditch player (respectively) and remained good friends, going to the Three Broomsticks together and giving each other's children puffskeins, I'll be mad.  I want them to get married and have lots of little red-bushy-haired genius kids who turn into bags of nerves at crucial moments (though never all at once) and laugh at their mum for not knowing much about Quidditch and their dad for never knowing anything out of Hogwarts, a History and...yeah.  And I want Harry to survive, and Ginny to grow up and them to get back together and have lots more children, with green eyes and red hair that sticks everywhere, or black ponytails and glasses, and some of them'll be tall and skinny and some of them'll be small and skinny and most of them will like Quidditch and they'll have occasionally horrific tempers and two of them will probably be twins...  And Luna will make an important discovery that will change the face of modern magic and marry someone extremely charming and good-looking who will completely adore her and whom she will adore, in a distracted kind of way.  (And that'll show all the people who stole her stuff.  Hah.)  And Neville will become a leading authority in world herbology...and Cedric will be resurrected so that I can marry him because ten years is not too big an age difference and this is rapidly descending from probably-nonsense to certainly-nonsense.  Oh, well.

But I do want to see how he finally defeats Voldemort...after all the ideas in fanfic, I hope it's something completely unexpected and worth the hype.  The way it was done in After the End still seems the most reasonable way for love to defeat the Dark Lord, but we'll see.  The dubious reviews say there are a lot of surprises, but then they included the Invisibility Cloak among them.  Oh, please
I really wish I could remember all the things I noticed and/or predicted on my read-through of the series (which I finished on Tuesday, I think—plenty of time, anyway).  I  know that I'm going to read this book through really quickly in order to get to the end—I'm absolutely determined not to turn to the last chapter, which I have done far too often,  or to accidentally spoil myself (book falls open to "It was my fault Sirius died", cue panicked gasps)—but I don't know if I can manage it.  Maybe I should tape the back half together until I get to it...  On the other hand, there is part of me that wants to read it slowly, to be aware of my reaction to it—because one of the things I regret about reading a book for the first time is that you can never do it again.  I have no real memory of the first time I read Lord of the Rings, and I really wish I did.  But who am I kidding?  This is going to be another race to the finish...hopefully I'll still want to talk about it when I'm finished.  Come on, positive thoughts!

Twelve minutes to seven...that's about sixteen hours to go.  Those postmen had better not dare strike, like they did last week.  Or even be late. 
 
 
Current Mood: excitedexcited
Current Music: PotC
 
 
 
Could use a little more cowbell: chocolatethewhiteowl on July 21st, 2007 05:10 pm (UTC)
I have defragmented Elrond and cleaned him (I deleted a whole GIG of stuff!), so perhaps he'll run better now.
Could use a little more cowbell: lunathewhiteowl on July 21st, 2007 06:08 pm (UTC)
Oh, and I love your version of Luna's future.