Becoming Harry Potter: Vanquisher of Voldemort #MNBHP
“You’re right. But before you try to kill me, I’d advise you to think about what you’ve done. . . . Think, and try for some remorse, Riddle. . . .”
“What is this?”
Of all the things that Harry had said to him, beyond any revelation or taunt, nothing had shocked Voldemort like this. Harry saw his pupils contract to thin slits, saw the skin around his eyes whiten.
“It’s your one last chance,” said Harry, “it’s all you’ve got left. . . . I’ve seen what you’ll be otherwise. . . . Be a man . . . try . . . Try for some remorse. . . .”
“You dare—?” said Voldemort again.”
“Yes, I dare,” said Harry, “because Dumbledore’s last plan hasn’t backfired on me at all. It’s backfired on you, Riddle.”
The difference between those who truly love and those who don’t comes down to remorse. We all make mistakes—even Dumbledore. It is the ability to feel remorse for those mistakes that gives us the ability to change and grow in love.
“Isn’t there any way of putting yourself back together?” Ron asked.
“Yes,” said Hermione with a hollow smile, “but it would be excruciatingly painful.”
“Why? How do you do it?” asked Harry.
“Remorse,” said Hermione. “You’ve got to really feel what you’ve done. There’s a footnote. Apparently the pain of it can destroy you. I can’t see Voldemort attempting it somehow, can you?”
When you mess up, don’t cast Avada Kedavra. Step back. Take a moment. Feel what you’ve done. Experience that remorse—the pain that means healing. Come back to love. Come back to the heart of Potter.
At last he said, “Grindelwald tried to stop Voldemort going after the wand. He lied, you know, pretended he had never had it.”
Dumbledore nodded, looking down at his lap, tears still glittering on the crooked nose.
“They say he showed remorse in later years, alone in his cell at Nurmengard. I hope that it is true. I would like to think he did feel the horror and shame of what he had done. Perhaps that lie to Voldemort was his attempt to make amends . . . to prevent Voldemort from taking the Hallow . . .”
“. . . or maybe from breaking into your tomb?” suggested Harry, and Dumbledore dabbed his eyes