Epilogue: 19 Minutes Later
In the epilogue of the series, Rowling’s main characters come together to see their children off for another year of schooling at Hogwarts. Yet so much took place between the Final Battle on May 2, 1998, and the epilogue on September 1, 2017. This will be the beginning of a small series based on pure speculation and opinions of what could have transpired in the time between these two events.
For now let us visit the Battle of Hogwarts and focus on the possibilities of what came 19 minutes after Harry defeated Voldemort.
In that time, survivors would have begun reuniting with one another in hopes of finding their friends and family still alive. For the students who had remained to fight, checkpoints were most likely arranged to get head counts (per House) of those missing, and the same could have been done for the Order. Healers from St. Mungo’s would have been called in to assess the wounded and then transport those who needed immediate attention. Naturally, the dead would have been moved to an area of the Great Hall to be identified by family or friends, and a list of the deceased would have been compiled and sent to the Ministry along with a missing persons list.
At this point families would have begun to mourn those lost during the battle and experience the initial stages of shock and grief that come along with death. Death Eaters would have been on the run in hopes of escaping imprisonment. There may have been smaller duels to capture the last of Voldemort’s followers. Eventually, the house-elves would put together small meals and make cups of tea to console and refuel the weak. Slughorn would have had to brew Veritaserum in order to determine who was truly under the Imperius Curse and who behaved of their own accord. There would have been immense relief for those who were reunited, not to mention feelings of happiness over knowledge of the war finally coming to an end and the comfort of knowing that Lord Voldemort would never harm their world again.
Outside the battle, news would have surely spread like wildfire by owl and Patronus about Voldemort’s downfall. Celebrations would break out again around the globe, just as they did when Voldemort fell the first time. Some families would wait nervously for news of their loved ones and for what the future held. Euphoria would stretch around the world; however, some would go about their day unaware of what happened at all. I imagine Muggle friends of Muggle-borns waiting for their pals to arrive home from boarding school being informed that something truly tragic occurred, and they would not be coming home.
For those outside the immediate circle of the battle and its warriors, the celebrations would go all night without worrying what would come to be. Once again, witches, wizards, Squibs, and others would toast to Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived.
What do you believe would have happened 19 minutes after the battle? Please remember this is all speculation, so anything is possible.