The Final Photograph | Teen Ink

The Final Photograph

April 18, 2008
By Sarah Leeves, Bambi Trail, ZZ

NOTE: This is a fan-fiction based around the book Harry Potter.

A vibrant green curse shot past Colin Creevey’s hiding place and he jumped back in alarm. His head just missed the sharp spike on the torch behind him.

It was the Final Battle, and Colin didn’t even want to think of whom that curse could’ve hit. He didn’t want to think about the amount of other curses and spells that where flying around right now with a deadly purpose.

Dust rained down on his head as part of the wall was denigrated. He could remember Professor McGonagall yelling at him, his professor’s voice ringing in his head, telling him to go away and hide.

He was underage. But he didn’t care.

With a loud clunk something hit his head. Colin picked it up, wiping away the dust to reveal a black, old and very, very dusty object.

A camera.

After a couple of seconds, Colin Creevey realized what - whose camera it was.

His camera.

He looked at it in disbelief. Memories flashed through his head.

He had gotten his camera before he had even known about Hogwarts. He had wanted to be a professional photographer.

He could picture the day, his tenth birthday, receiving the camera. His face had lit up in amazement and he had taken four rolls of film on that day alone.

After that he was never without his camera.

It had been with him, taking a picture of the strange letter from ‘Hogwarts’. It had watched him open the letter and had frozen that time in history, recorded on film as he had entered the wizarding world.

It had captured his parents proud, proud faces. It had framed the time in which they had explained the magical world he was about to enter on its brown canvas film.

It had explored Knockturn Alley with him, his parents showing him the wonders of the alley, exploring shops and stores, opening books and framing the moving pictures and oddly-printed pages.

Drawing memories on its brown canvas with the expertise of a famous artist, his camera showed him every bit of the new world.

It had recorded his entire journey over the lake to his new home; waves lapping dangerously against the side of the boat and the full moon catching pale faces as they stared out towards their new home.

The castle. He still had his very first picture of it, lights shining out, illuminating the water with a magical glow. It had looked so dark and scary at the time, his new home’s tall, impressive towers filling the entire sky and stretching up, forever.

But he knew now that it was different. Yes, Hogwarts has dark corners, hidden away with powerful, evil magic. Yes, those corners were sometimes found and brought to be, causing a problem that usually resulted in the loss of a Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher (not to mention being solved by Harry Potter).

But there were spaces in between those corners, those spaces right in the middle of the hall, happy lights shining and even happier people walking by, avoiding those dark corners, those were what made life worth while.

The time between the problems, the windows to perfect lives, the pictures of happiness, there were lots of spaces in between those dark corners.

Colin Creevey’s camera had flashed right into Professor Dumbledore’s eyes as he had given Colin one of his special, knowing winks - right after his very first dinner at Hogwarts, right after getting immediately lost.

His camera had documented the scene of the Great Hall, seemingly different every year, but always somehow the same; new students with their frightened faces looking up at the great sky-like ceiling. It had seen the old ones cheer as he had made his way to Gryffindor for the very first time.

It had taken a picture of the Harry Potter. Colin’s idol.

His camera had taken several pictures of Harry Potter to be exact. Colin had followed him around like an excited little kid.

And he was.

Colin had never stopped smiling. Never once.

His camera had been nearly ruined when it took a picture of the basilisk.

His camera had saved his life, prettifying him instead of immediate death.

And here it was, in his hands, fallen down from where it had been stuck at the end of his third year.

After that he had taken up drawing things himself. The prices had gone up for cameras and he could no longer afford a new one.

Just to get that camera his parents had spent a years worth of their savings. Colin hadn’t even believed it was his at first.

He still didn’t. He couldn’t imagine what was happening around him either, what was going on in his life.

How could people think such evil things? Colin didn’t understand it. He couldn’t.

He didn’t understand what was happening right now either, the spells, curses, right in front of him, two very similar looking people, fighting to death. But they were the same. Everyone here was the same, besides they’re wrong choices.

But his camera, he had found his camera.

He could remember it falling from the Astronomy tower late one night when he had been documenting the stars. His teacher had always encouraged the use of a camera in class.

Colin had been the star student. He had loved Astronomy just as much as he adored Transfiguration.

But his camera had fallen. And after that, the tower hadn’t been the same.

Colin had spent about half a year looking for it. His parents hadn’t minded all that much. They had said it was bound to happen sometime.

Colin loved his parents.

Colin loved his brother.

Colin loved his camera.

And now it lay, right in his hands, only baring a couple scratches here and there from the fall and the few falls before that.

Colin’s thoughts turned to Dennis. Colin had made sure he was safe, with the older students, safe and sound before he had left to fight.

Dennis had wanted to stay, he had wanted to join him in fighting. It had taken a while to persuade him not to come.

Colin loved his brother. He had always watched out for Dennis. After Dennis had fallen in the lakeColin knew that his brother wasn’t the most careful. That was why he had made him stay.

But Colin was here. He was helping Harry Potter.

You’re not helping much staying hidden, his mind told him. Colin fingered the camera, thinking. It still had some film left. Some. Maybe five or six pictures, maybe more.

Colin stood up and held his wand. The fighting seemed to be in slow motion as he left his safe hiding place, curses he had learnt from Dumbdore’s Army two years before flying around him like angry bumble bees.

He ducked and dodged green and red streaks that came at him, remembering the movements from DA.

Harry had taught there.

Colin had practiced almost every night everything that they had learnt. It had taken him a while to get the hang of his Patronus, but he had.

Harry had been proud to see the soaring, sweeping Gold Finch zoom across the classroom.

He had been to.

More curses flew from his mouth and others mouths as well.

They wanted to kill him.

It was the first time that thought had sunk in, after circling around his head for a little while.

People, the people surrounding him, wanted him dead. They didn’t care about his age, how much life he had left. They wanted him dead.

That thought pierced through his heart, stabbing him with fear.

Colin sent of more curses and spells, avoiding, dodging, and fighting for his life in a deadly battle.

In his left hand he held his camera. The button at the top was old and filled with dust, but it still made that satisfying click as he took a picture.

His first one was of Professor McGonagall’s face as she saw him fighting. Her face was illuminated with green and covered in fear at the sight of him. Her voice barely carried over the din, telling him to leave. He could barely hear her, but knew exactly what she was saying. He shouldn’t be here.

But he needed to be.

Colin had just enough time to yell at her to duck before a killing curse hit her. She dropped to the ground and Colin ran before she could force him to leave.

His second photograph was filled with crumbling wall, charged with red as a spell came soaring past him.

More curses set off, Colin ducked and dodged and shouted some of his own.

A jelly-leg-jinx at the Death Eater next to him stopped Voldemort’s helper from killing Molly Weasley.

He squirted water right in another Death Eaters face. The other man lost concentration and hit his ally with a killing curse instead of Harry Potter’s friend.

He sent another wave of body-binding curses off at the enemies surrounding him followed by an incarcerous spell.

Colin had learnt the last one himself, and had taught it to his brother. His brother had passed it onto his friends and shouts of it rang out of the older students mouths.

Colin ran down the hall a little bit, shielding himself from most curses with a simple protego.

A single, torn and half-burnt away sheet of the Daily Prophet lay on the ground beside him. Colin picked it up. Half of Harry Potter’s face was visible, the rest just charred ashes. It read ‘Harry A Fake?’

Colin remembered this. It had caused quiet a stir along the students.

But Colin knew Harry. He knew that Harry was better than everything that the Prophet had ever said.

That was why he was fighting.

For Harry Potter’s sake.

For the Boy Who Lived.

The Chosen One.

He was fighting so that his brother would and could like in a world not plagued by evilness and drowned in poverty.

A confringo, blasting curse sprouted from his wand like a flower with a deadly purpose hitting an arm right at the mark on its wrist.

His voice rang out along the others, drowned by the crash of his second home as more statues and pieces of walls flew around and crumbled.

Sometimes it even seemed like his first home.

The statue where he had had his first kiss came crashing down; spreading a wave of rocks everywhere, hitting everything.

Colin lifted the biggest one he could find and dropped it on Mr. Crabbe Senior’s head. Crabbe crumpled to the floor.

Colin sent of a wave of Expellimaris in every direction, hitting everyone whom wasn’;t his friend, or on his side.

Wands went flying like birds who had just realized that they where on the Whomping Willow.

Colin sprinted down the hall a little to avoid another crashing wall. His voice was hoarse from yelling spells but he didn’t stop.

He took another picture. His third picture. It showed a painting, just recently hung up. The name at the bottom read Colin Creevey.

Its paint had just dried today.

There was a slash across the middle but otherwise it was still intact. The picture showed an open meadow, shining sun and the happy world he was fighting for.

People ran across it screaming, faces caked in tears and covered in signs of fear and distress, trampling his perfect grass and staining the perfect world.

The Fat Lady and her friend Violet where one of the only people to stop and stare at him.

They had thanked him for the help he was doing by fighting.

But they had told him to run while he could.

He didn’t run.

He couldn’t.

There was too much going on to cower in some tower, just listening to the shouts and screams below him as people met and battled with their death.

He took another picture.

More wands flew and he caught them all in his photograph of stopped time, hanging in the air.

Colin leapt up and grabbed as many as he could, breaking them, five at once. Angry roars reached his ears as people realized what he had done.

Another round of curses. Another picture.

Scared faces hung in the air, still dusty and dark. Shouts rang out, but pictures only took in what you could see.

What you felt couldn’t be captured unless you let your innermost feelings leak out onto your face.

He sent a Confundus Charm towards a group of Death Eaters who had cornered Fred Weasley against the wall, followed by a round of Conjunctivitis Curses making Voldemort’s followers go blind.

Fred caught his eye and nodded thanks before breaking all of their wands and setting some fire crackers off.

More confusion rang in the air. Colin ran down the hall and stepped right into a fight between Professor Lupin and eight other Death Eaters.

He helped him out all he could, curses flying off in every direction, green, purple, gold, red, the air rang with shouts was filled with a rainbow of colours.

It was beautiful.

He took a picture and continued to fight. More people came from both sides and it got worse.

Colin saw a green flash coming towards him.

There was no way he could stop it.

A horribly reality hit him.

The fear he had been keeping inside raced across his face and Colin Creevey turned his beloved camera around.

He took a picture of himself, illuminated by the green shot that would kill him within seconds.

His face showed the final picture. His final emotions.

He did not want to die.

But wanted to help.

He wanted the world’s problems to cease to exist.

He wanted something that was impossible to reach, and he knew it.

But he wanted to get as close to it, as close to perfectness, as possible.

And dying, he knew he had helped.

The shutter clicked and the camera fell, lying closely beside its friend.

Colin Creevey.

He would never again be part of the world. He would never see the perfect meadow he envisioned.

But he had helped it come to life.

Footsteps echoed up the stairs. A black object was picked up and, in the dark, opened.

A couple days later it was placed beside a young man in his grave. Held in his hands, the camera would rest forever.

Beside him were endless amounts of pictures. Some moved, the people in it crying and sobbing endlessly as they had been since they felt their photographer die.

Right above his camera on his chest were pictures of him and his family. Some stayed still while others joined the crying parade as his coffin was carried towards its final resting place.

The last thing to be put in his grave was his painting. Covering him like a blanket, the world he had so hoped to get, the world he had helped in getting.

His brother, his family, they would get it - or as closet o it as was humanly possible.

He wouldn’t.

Maybe he had known that even before he had started fighting; that he was going to die.

He had fought for freedom and won it, but the price was a tragedy.

Attached to his painting were two letters.

One was from Professor McGonagall and the other from Harry Potter.

They where both thick with thankfulness for his help and sorrow for his loss.

Harry Potter and the Creevey’s closed the lid to the coffin together and it sank belowground.

Colin Creevey was gone.

Nothing more than a memory of camera flashes, wet paint and brown canvas.

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This article has 38 comments.

on Dec. 10 2010 at 11:15 pm
Forever.Pfenix, San Bernardino, California
0 articles 0 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
Just Because You're Paranoid Doesn't Mean They're Not Out Ta Get You.

Wow, it was amazing. I must say some information WAS inaccurate, but nothing too horrible, and I really like the way you've got with words. I never actually paid much attention to Collin . . .  until now(: Nice job!

on Dec. 10 2010 at 5:08 pm
DiamondsIntheGrass GOLD, Martinsville, New Jersey
14 articles 1 photo 279 comments

Favorite Quote:
Worry is simply a misuse of the imagination.

quite nice, very emotional and very descriptive (sometimes overly descriptive, it seems.  you mentioned flying wands quite a few times, though i'm not sure why they would be suspended in mid air, unless someone cast an expelliarmus spell) and some things were not accurate according to the book; for instance: harry potter thought colin was a nusaince. and all the things that vampireX had mentioned. but all in all, you are very gifted in expressing feelings.

VampireX GOLD said...
on Dec. 10 2010 at 7:27 am
VampireX GOLD, Spotsylvania, Virginia
18 articles 0 photos 81 comments
I liked it. Correct me if i'm wrong though, did you say near the begining that his pictures were frozen? because magical pictures move.

marina95 said...
on Nov. 28 2010 at 12:14 am

on Jun. 17 2010 at 9:35 am
hiddenpoet SILVER, East Meredith, New York
7 articles 1 photo 15 comments

Favorite Quote:
Just live like you live it already.

First off, I thought this was a great story based on the seventh Harry Potter book. Second, some of the information was wrong in it, such as Collin's parents showing him around Knockturn Alley. His father was a muggle and he had no mother. Also, I don't think he would have gone down Knockturn Alley because that was the dark Alley where Slytherin's shopped. He would have gone on Diagon Alley. Last, some of the grammer/spelling was hard to read. But in all, the storyline was great.

zezasister said...
on Jun. 3 2010 at 1:14 am
WOW! I give it an A, something i rarely do

on Apr. 12 2010 at 3:35 pm
Demon_of_Truth, Warrenton, Virginia
0 articles 0 photos 40 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I'm not a geek, I prefer the term 'intellectual bad-a**"

The story speaks for itself, it was moving and emotional. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but Colin's last was worth more than a person could say their whole life.

on Mar. 28 2010 at 2:16 pm
SarClark BRONZE, NC, Connecticut
2 articles 0 photos 534 comments

This was good but slightly long


on Mar. 21 2010 at 2:04 pm
MayaElyashiv PLATINUM, Ramat Hasharon, Other
37 articles 4 photos 196 comments
First off, I really like this!

Second, sorry to be nitpicking, but you said that Collin's parents showed him around Knockturn Alley. Two problems with this: 1) Collin Creevy lives with his dad and has no mother. 2) Collin's father is a Muggle (a milk man to be exact) and therefor there is no way his parent could show him around a wizarding lane.

Other than that, loved it!

on Mar. 14 2010 at 8:19 pm
literaryaddict PLATINUM, Albuquerque, New Mexico
23 articles 3 photos 157 comments

Favorite Quote:
"We're almost there and no where near it. All that matters is that we're going." Lorelai Gilmore, Gilmore Girls
"The whole theory of modern education is radically unsound." Lady Bracknell, The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde

that was really great. i liked how you brought to life a flat character from the book and made the reader love him. it brought a new perspective to a character that you always say, in an exasperated tone of voice, "collin, don't" to

on Feb. 27 2010 at 7:57 am
Waterlogged BRONZE, Grapevine, Texas
1 article 0 photos 36 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Winston, you are drunk." To which Churchill responded, "and you, madam, are ugly. But in the morning, I'll be sober,"-Lady Astor and Winston Churchill

this was cool!

on Dec. 1 2009 at 1:07 pm
assassinvamp BRONZE, Manchester, Other
1 article 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
nothing is impossible with god

oh my. that was so beautiful and emotional. harry potter is my all time favourite book and i have never thought about what colin was thinking or feeling. this idea was amazingly cool. u r so good

uniquegrl7 said...
on Oct. 25 2009 at 5:57 pm
I absolutely loved this. It was awesome how you made this almost in verse, but it was still in prose. This was absolutely beautiful.

on Oct. 18 2009 at 8:57 pm
crazycreative23 BRONZE, Maple Grove, Minnesota
1 article 0 photos 10 comments

Favorite Quote:
Each new hour holds new chances for new beginnings.
-Maya Angelou

I love the idea of livng life through a camera and I really enjoyed listening to the pictures he'd taken through life. I liked your short simple one sentence paragraphs, and your detail of the scene aroun his emotions, and you could put even more of tht in. But really awesome! And go HP! Way better than twilight! :)

on Oct. 18 2009 at 10:26 am
elvinchangling55 SILVER, Malverne, New York
6 articles 0 photos 50 comments
its soo beautiful i literally am crying right now. its soo sentimental. it really brought back memories from reading the 7th book!!!

Sarah said...
on Sep. 24 2009 at 2:55 pm
Thanks! I don't really know how I got the idea... mainly when I read that Colin had lost his camera in book 5 or something, it just happened.

on Sep. 10 2009 at 10:24 pm
laurennnnnxo84 GOLD, Cottage Grove, Minnesota
10 articles 4 photos 4 comments
ohmygod this is insanely amazing.

aquagal said...
on Sep. 7 2009 at 1:06 pm
aquagal, Anominis, Indiana
0 articles 0 photos 8 comments
I love it it's so sad thought were did you get this idea from would it be alright if I also did a harry poter story too