**I don't own Harry Potter. Jo Rowling has the honor of his creation. I am
only playing with her toys. I don't mean any disrespect to her or anyone
else. I am just very eager for the fifth book so, I am writing my own
version of it. I hope everyone enjoys it as much as I have enjoyed writing
it. Thanks, for stopping by.**
Harry sat in the back of his uncle's car wondering when Dumbledore would
allow him to go to the Weasley's. His Uncle Vernon was abnormally quiet.
A man riding a motorcycle cut him off and he failed to respond with his
normal colorful language and biting comments. As a matter of fact his
uncle hadn't said a word since he picked Harry up from the train station.
It was odd behavior, but Harry wasn't about to complain. The silence was a
relief from the noise at school where he was surrounded by his peers. It
gave him time to think, and he had a lot of thinking to do.
When they arrived at #4 Privet Drive his Uncle helped him carry his trunk
and Hedwig's cage up to his room without complaint.
"Harry, when you have finished unpacking I would appreciate it if you would
join us in the family room." His uncle's request took him by surprise so he
merely nodded. He watched his Uncle retreat from the room and turned to
look at Hedwig. He opened her cage and said, "That was weird."
She hooted in reply and flew up to his shoulder. Harry opened the bar less
window. "Go on, I know you are dieing to stretch your wings." The snowy owl
hooted again and flew out the window. Harry watched her wings catch the
wind and fly away in search of prey.
He unpacked quickly. He had to study very hard. Voldemort was back and
Harry had to be ready for him. It was his fault that he had come back.
Pettigrew had used his blood in the potion that brought Voldeomort back to
life. Harry was going to be ready to protect his friends. No one else was
going to loose their lives around him. Cedric had befriended him and paid
the price because Harry hadn't been prepared. That would never happen
again. He wrote a quick note to Dumbledore asking for the fifth year book
list. Signed it, sealed it and set it on his desk for Hedwig to deliver
when she returned.
He sighed. "I guess I need to go face the music."
When Harry entered the family room he found his aunt Petunia and his cousin
Dudley sitting on the sofa drinking tea. He was incredibly surprised by
Dudley's appearance. He had lost a great deal of weight. He was no longer
the size of a baby whale, but he was still a large boy. He had actually
grown a lot taller. He was roughly the height of Ron Weasley. Harry
couldn't really tell, because he was sitting. Dudley and Petunia turned
and looked at Harry when they noticed him at the door.
"H. hello Harry." Dudley said timidly.
Harry sat in the vacant armchair by the window. Dudley was trying to be
civil to him. The least he could do was reciprocate. Maybe, just maybe
this summer wouldn't be so bad after all. He smiled broadly. "Wow! Dudley
you look great! I mean, you have lost a lot of weight."
Dudley's cheeks flushed red and he smiled nervously. "Yes, I . I was
invited to play a new game at school." His eyes lit up and sat forward
excitedly. "American Football. Coach Witherspoon asked me to play. We've
been training really hard." Dudley grinned. "Next year we will start
playing other schools. American football is all the rage!"
Harry couldn't believe his cousin was so excited over a sport! Dudley
Dursley was in training and he was excited about it! This coach Witherspoon
must be some motivator, Harry thought. His thoughts were interrupted by his
"Yes, we are very proud of Dudley." He said taking the chair next to Harry.
"Er.. Marge is coming next week to watch the boys practice." Uncle Vernon
turned and looked at Harry wearily. "Mrs. Figg has offered to allow you to
stay with her during Marge's' visit. If you would like?"
Harry opened his mouth to reply, but found it impossible to speak. The
Dursleys were worried about him? No, of course not. The last time "aunt"
Marge had stayed with them he had made her explode. Of course they didn't
want him around.
Aunt Petunia broke his reverie. "Your professor Snape came to see us,
Harry.", she said softly. "He told us what happened."
Harry looked at his aunt disbelievingly. "Professor Snape? Came here?"
She gave him a nervous nod.
"Well, what did he say?" Harry snapped impatiently.
The Dursleys all jumped and eyed him nervously as though they thought he
was going to explode at any moment. Uncle Vernon was the first to find his
"He told us everything. About the tournament. about the boy that was
killed. and the monster that killed your parents."
Harry's eyes filled with tears as the painful memories flooded back. He
closed his eyes and a tear fell down his face. He felt a hand on his
shoulder, and he opened his eyes. His aunt was kneeling in front of him.
She had tears in her own eyes. She pulled him into a motherly hug and the
brave mask shattered. Harry let the wail of pain finally escape. He sobbed
convulsively into his aunt's shoulder, unabashed, while she rubbed his back
soothingly. When his sobbing slowed Petunia pulled away and wiped his tears
His uncle's voice broke the silence. "It wasn't your fault Harry. Your
professor, he told us what you did. How you brought back the boys body.
That was a very brave thing to do Harry."
Harry sank into the chair, absolutely shocked. "Why, why are you being so
nice to me?", he asked weakly.
Petunia blew her nose noisily and looked at him tenderly.
"Harry, your mother and I were never very close, but-" She began sobbing
uncontrollably and uncle Vernon answered Harry's question for her.
"We, we didn't. We were trying to squash the magic out of you. We didn't
want you to meet the same fate as your parents. We told you they died in a
car crash to protect you. We didn't tell you anything about them, because
we thought. Well we thought that you might not become like them if we kept
it all from you. We were trying to protect you."
Harry couldn't believe what he was hearing. "But, but you all hate me!
You've always hated me!"
Petunia sobbed. "No, Harry we don't hate you. How could we hate you? We've
raised you. We just didn't want you to be like your parents. You were only
a baby when I found you on our doorstep. So innocent and unaware of the
horror you had just faced. Dumbledore left a letter for us. He told us what
happened." She shuddered. "You were only a baby and your parents had been-"
She began sobbing again, uncontrollably. Uncle Vernon rushed over and
pulled her into a great bear hug.
Harry sat in the chair shocked. He looked over at Dudley who smiled weakly
at him. Apparently, this was all new to him, too.
"Well, enough of this." His aunt said pulling away from Vernon. "I need to
start dinner. I have three strapping men to feed." With that she rushed off
to the kitchen.
Vernon turned to Harry. "So, I understand you have learned to play chess at
this school of yours. Let's have a game shall we? Between the two of us
we might teach Dudley how it's done."
Harry's jaw dropped. Who are these people and what did they do with the
Uncle Vernon pulled his old chess set out from under the coffee table and
started setting up the game.
"Well?" He asked.
Ok, Harry thought, this is going to be an interesting summer.