Chapter 1: Welcome to My Life
I hate being home, Harry thought to himself. No, this isn't home, this is hell. He'd been up since 5am getting breakfast cooked so Vernon could get out the door in a timely manner. God forbid he was late. God? What God? Would a God make me live like this, day after day of these insolent chores, no sleep—THWACK something hard collided with Harry's head pulling him from his thoughts. When he steadied himself and his sight returned seconds later he realized Vernon had hit him, again. Another bruise starting amidst the already purpleish-yellow hue of Harry's face.
"Boy, the next time I catch you lollygagging staring off into space instead of paying attention to the damn eggs there will be hell to pay!" Vernon grumbled from his chair. "Come on freak, I'm waiting."
Harry forced himself to think past the fogginess in his head from the most recent blow and brought Vernon his breakfast. He had a long list of chores today and was already on his uncle's bad side. Harry went outside to start mowing the law. If I could just use my magic, I could just use a spell…., he thought as he absent-mindedly pushed the mower along. The rest of the day went by smoothly, with Vernon at work, Dudley out with his friends, and Petunia out to lunch, Harry didn't have to worry about anything more than his chores. He finished the rest of his list and went up to his room, the clock read 3:02.
Good, another hour to myself. His mind drifted to Sirius. It's all my fault he's dead. The last member of my family and I basically kill him. Ron and Hermione don't understand. They're not The-Boy-Who-Lived. Damn name, never helped me at all. Harry opened his trunk and pulled out the picture of his parents. A tear rolled down a cheek. I'm sorry I failed you two. I'm sorry Sirius is dead. He looked into the cracked floor-length mirror. A boy with emerald eyes stared back. Harry removed his shirt and glamours and took a minute to study his body. A long cut ran from his left hip to his right shoulder, many more similar to that crisscrossed down his back and disappeared beneath the waistband of his jeans. Bruises discoloured the rest of his skin. He could still see the black traces Vernon's fingers around the tops of his skeletal arms. That was from yesterday…
Harry was on the floor on all fours, scrubbing.
"BOY!" Vernon bellowed
He stiffened and stood just in time to see his uncle's fist come in contact with his nose. SNAP. Yeah, broken, Harry thought, but didn't have time to think on it long. Vernon grabbed Harry around the arms just below the shoulders and started shaking him.
"WHAT THE HELL, WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING?!" Vernon yelled, his eyes bulged from his red, piggish face.
"…S-s-sorry uncle?" Harry said, flinching immediately. That was obviously the wrong thing to say. He heard the undoing of Vernon's belt. "Please uncle, no. Please" Harry whispered. His pleas were ignored as Vernon brought the belt down on him. The smack it made against the thin shirt of his back was sickening. Harry felt the blood running down his back, staining the dirty white T-shirt he was wearing. By the fourth hit, Harry was digging his nails into his hands to keep from screaming. A small whimper escaped him and a gleeful smile appeared on Vernon's pudgy face.
"Freaks don't get to speak when being punished. Shut up Boy!" Vernon said, but the glint in his eye told Harry it was only going to get worse
His eyes moved from his back to his stomach. His skin stretched so tightly across his ribs, he could almost see the fracture from last night. He cringed as he looked at his face. A sick purple-black blossomed around his eye, highlighted by the yellow on his jaw. I've already been home a week and I look like this. My old scars are barely even visible though what's happened this week.
Harry glanced behind him into his trunk and saw his potions knife sticking out of it. He walked cautiously over to it, an idea forming. The clock read 3:44. He had enough time. Harry took the knife from his trunk and turned it over and over in his hand. He felt the coldness of the steel, the black handle almost shimmered in the afternoon light. He pressed the flat side of the blade to his arm, the coolness relaxed him. He turned the blade over and pressed the sharp side to his wrist. His hand shook and he pulled the knife away.
Maybe I shouldn't do this. It's a stupid thing to do. I'm just doing to myself what they do to me… NO, I'm in control like this. I have the power.
He took a breath and dragged the knife across his wrist. It was a shallow cut, barely any blood bubbled to the surface. He brought the blade down once more, harder this time, faster. He hissed at the pain, but there was something else. Freedom. Yes, I deserve this pain. I deserve it and only I can give it. He brought the knife down again, the metal kissing his hot skin, the blood coming rapidly forward to meet the afternoon air.
A door downstairs opened. Damn! Harry thought as he hastily shoved his knife back in his trunk and put his glamours back up. He knew a beating would come if one of the neighbors caught sight of the boy with all the bruises.
Severus sat in his chamber deep in the dungeons. They were chilly, but he had a toasty fire roaring in the marble fireplace, a glass of firewhiskey in his hand and a book in the other. His library was his favourite room, from the books covering every section of wall, the fire, everything right down to the leather couch on which he sat. He'd just gotten comfortable when Dumbledore flooed in. Snape growled. Damn him for interrupting me. Summer just started and my first break is already ruined.
"Hello Severus" the man merrily stated.
"Headmaster," Snape nodded in Dumbledore's general direction, "Is there something I can do for you? As you can clearly see I am quite comfortable…"
"Yes, right, Severus. I'll get straight to the point," He said with a twinkle in his eyes, "you missed the last Order meeting. I'm simply here to catch you up on a few things." Snape nodded again, he quickly lost patience and just wished the old man would hurry along. "Severus, the Oder is worried that Voldemort might try to hurt Harry this summer—"
Snape cut him off "The wards will protect him. I'm sure Mr. Potter is fine, Headmaster."
"Severus, that is all well and good, but the Order still decided someone needs to keep watch on the house"
"Alright. And?" Snape demanded, dead already growing in him. Not me, it better not be me. The Potter brat is fine. I don't need to see James Potter's son living the good life-
"You are the one the Order has chosen to keep watch."
"WHAT?" Snape couldn't keep the anger from his tone "WHY SHOULD I, SEVERUS SNAPE, HAVE TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR PRECIOUS GOLDEN BOY?"
"Please calm down Severus," said Dumbledore tiredly. "He's Lilly's son too"