When he met her, she filled a tiny train car with loud questions, bushy hair, and a know-it-all attitude. She pushed Ron aside and filled the space next to him. She was always filling in the empty spaces.
The classroom never felt full unless she was there. She was there with her hand in the air, bouncing up and down in her seat (“Honestly, Harry, we both know I didn’t bounce by my 5th year!”). Her voice was crystal clear and carried a confidence a scholar of 20 years could only hope for. She was always answering the empty silences.
The library never felt the same after she graduated. Madame Pince would never admit it, but she dearly missed her presence. She had a way of treating all of the books as helpful friends. Elegant fingers stroking the book spines, an easy smile ready for the younger students with questions, the tables stacked to the edges with piles of tomes. She was always sitting at the empty tables.
Their tent never felt warm unless she was there. He figured it must have been some innate warmth that Hermione only carried. Whenever he and Ron sat in the tent, they always complained it was cold. She would come in with an exasperated sigh and waved her wand to stoke the fire. He wished he had the courage to tell her he felt warmer with her nearby. She was always warming the cold spaces.
Their house only felt like a home with her there. Her easy smile, her musty old books that she just had to rescue from the library, and her empty tea cups littered their tiny flat. He promised himself he would tell her how much he loved and appreciated her every day. Even though he hated it, he allowed Crookshanks to sleep in the bed with them because it made her happy to have her friend so close. He complained about shopping for furnishing for their flat, but he loved it. He saw her in every fixture. She was always filling the empty flat.
He never felt whole without her there. A hand to hold, lips to kiss, a shoulder to lean on. She was the only one he could be weak around, the only one he was allowed to be ‘Just Harry’. Her body warmed their bed, well her body minus her feet (“You know I love you, sweetheart, but please, put some socks on. Your feet are bloody cold!”). Okay, so maybe he liked it when she just laughed and pushed her feet between his legs. He was happy to warm them. She was his missing half. She was always filling empty spaces.
In a sick twisted way, it made sense, this new sense of loss and emptiness.
She came into his life, a whirlwind of hair and books and laughter. She filled the empty places in his life—school, home, self. She was entwined in every facet of his being.
And now she was gone.
She took everything that once filled his empty life.
So he was left with this: An empty home and an empty life.
A life without her.