This morning, now that Richard has finally plowed his way through all six books and I could safely snag the Half-Blood Prince back again (and also finally *talk* about it because no one else I know has finished it yet either, for crying out loud!), I sat down at breakfast and proceeded to read through the last four chapters in more depth. The first time I read it, by the time I reached that point I was reading and skimming so fast because I was sure that somehow, what happened hadn't really actually happened; that it was all just a big elaborate ruse put together by Dumbledore and Snape and that eventually everything would right itself and would be well. But it doesn't, of course, as any of us who have read the book have discovered, and I found myself tearing up a little as I reached the ending. Earlier this week, watching the trailer for the Goblet of Fire, I choked up as Dumbledore uttered his fateful words about how there would come a time when everyone had to choose between what is easy and what is right. And even though I knew that what he said was true and that what happened was meant to happen, it didn't make it any easier to hear.
As I was settling on the couch this evening with the latest afghan-in-progress, a movement caught my attenton. Just at the edge of my line of vision I saw a tortoiseshell tail - the base where it hit the body a little ruffled and raggedy looking, and for the briefest moment I thought it was Rebecca. It wasn't, of course, since she's been buried in the flower bed for nearly a year, but sometimes it really hits me, how a creature so ornery and small can leave such a huge hole when she is gone.