If you’ve received this, something has happened and I am no longer alive, or no longer healthy enough to stop this from being sent. As I sit here it’s odd to imagine something happening to me. My life and my position are relatively sterile and dull. But there is war coming, and nothing is certain. So I have written to all of you because I don’t wish to be remembered as something other than what I truly am. I don’t fear death. My only fear is that one of you die before me, not having read these words. So please, whatever you may think of me, do me the favor of suffering my letters.
Don’t worry, this won’t be anything like the last letter you got from me. You may not believe me when I say this, but your reaction to that letter I sent you seventh year was not entirely sincere. I was truly proud of you becoming prefect; never doubt that. But I exaggerated the rest of it.
The reasons for that were sincere at the time, though I fear they will sound trite now. I knew you hated me. I had no reason to believe that would stop. So I didn’t do anything to discourage it. I worded my letter in a way that you would believe. Pretentious and unforgiving and hideous. It was fun to write, I admit, though probably not fun to read.
I am your brother, Ron. I tried to protect you and to help you as much as any of our other brothers did. But my way of doing that is so different, and...unwelcome. I understand that now. My desire to see you reach your highest heights and do as well as you could came off as nagging, as superiority and haughtiness. I’m sorry about that, but if I could go back and do it again I still wouldn’t know the right way to go about it.
I am uncomfortable with emotion. I’m much better at intellect. That’s how I tried to reach you. I’m sorry that it failed.
Ron...Harry Potter is going to lead you into a dangerous life. He will never have an easy go of things. But you are his friend, and you have the Weasley loyalty. Since I know your own safety will always be second to his, I only ask that you be careful and take care of yourself, and him, and Hermione and Ginny and whoever else you feel you must protect. You’re a good friend and a good brother, and I was proud of you before you became prefect, much as I will be proud of you long after the badge no longer matters.