"Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling launched a tradition in 2015, to apologize for one death each year on May 2, the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts. This particular character wasn't killed in the battle, but he was a hero, and there's no way you weren't emotional at his death. We're still emotional about it now.

In the first year, Rowling apologized for killing Fred Weasley. In 2016, she apologized for Remus Lupin. Last year, she apologized for killing Snape (and fans started fighting again).

Now it's 2018, and Rowling has offered her first apology for killing someone who was dead before the battle even started:

Dobby's death was devastating, both in the book and on film as the emotional bridge between "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1" and "Part 2." His burial scene at Shell Cottage prompted a flood of tears. Socks will never be mundane again, and always represent freedom and kindness.

We salute you, Dobby -- a hero, and a free elf.

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