I'm new here(actually posting at least) so forgive me if I'm doing this wrong.
I am a little confused as to why Harry's sacrifice in the forest gave the same protection to the people he loved as what he got from his mother.(If that is indeed what happened?)
The way I understand it his father did not give him and his mother the protection as he was not given a choice about dying or not. His mother did- therefore she gave him the protection.
JKR: James was immensely brave. But the caliber of Lily's bravery was, I think in this instance, higher because she could have saved herself. Now any mother, any normal mother would have done what Lily did. So in that sense her courage too was of an animal quality but she was given time to choose. James wasn't. It's like an intruder entering your house, isn't it? You would instinctively rush them. But if in cold blood you were told, "Get out of the way," you know, what would you do? I mean, I don't think any mother would stand aside from their child. But does that answer it? She did very consciously lay down her life. She had a clear choice -
ES: And James didn't.
JKR: Did he clearly die to try and protect Harry specifically given a clear choice? No. It's a subtle distinction and there's slightly more to it than that but that's most of the answer.
Now the way I understand it Harry did not have the choice his mother had. Yes he could have fled Hogwarts and never go into the forest to Voldemort- but then the same could be said for his father as he could have escaped the building through a window/backdoor instead of charging at Voldemort in the corridor.(Yes I know, neither Harry nor his father would have done that, but that's beside the point).
Voldemort was definitely going to kill Harry in the forest, just like he was definitely going to kill James. So my question is:
If Voldemort intended to kill Harry, why did the protection work for the people he loved?
Canon answers please (books or JKR-herself-recognized websites/forums, no wiki/wikia please!).