A/N: Hello everyone! Sorry for the delay, but I've been a little preoccupied with some life stuff and then I've been going over and over again about how to better my original story. Hopefully, I'll be able to address certain issues that reviewers and myself have raised. As for the addition of my new OC, Sabrina, she will pretty much be Harry's logical conscious and will have a similar role to Shade in my original story, except without any offensive role. Anyway, enjoy the first chapter of my newly rewritten Story of Independence. Note: JKR owns all of the Harry Potter characters, not me. No copyright infringement intended.
Chapter 1: The Truth Revealed
Harry Potter woke up this morning to the regular routine of his Aunt Petunia ordering him to wake up and make breakfast and his cousin, Dudley, jumping on the stairs to cover him in sawdust. What only he remembered was that today was his seventh birthday. His aunt had only told him that July 31st was his birthday so that they knew how old he was, but it was never a celebration of his life like Dudley's birthday was. He, unlike Dudley, got no presents and was given even more chores to do than normal as his Uncle Vernon said that he should 'pull his weight' for being 'cared' by them for another year.
After making breakfast for the Dursleys, Harry was given his long list of chores to do before his uncle went to work and his aunt took Dudley out for the day as it was the weekend. He had been doing the Dursleys' chores ever since he was able to walk and talk and was beaten whenever he failed to do them correctly, such as when he dropped the bacon the first time they made him cook their breakfast. He was also beaten whenever he did better than Dudley at school as they accused him of cheating.
What the Dursleys wouldn't admit was that Harry was a young prodigy and had a photographic memory. Most of the teachers never did understand why he went from that to being the lowest scoring student in the class, but they never asked. If they did, they would've realised that he deliberately failed to avoid the harsh beatings from his uncle as it meant that Dudley was at least not the dumbest student, which he actually was but the Dursleys would never accept this even when the teachers expressed concerns.
Therefore, we find Harry starting his chores by weeding the garden. After finishing that half an hour later, with cut hands due to the Dursleys not giving him the luxury of gloves, he was about to go inside to do the housework when he heard rustling and hissing coming from one of the bushes to his right. As he went to inspect it further, a snake came out and raised its head up, staring at him. The snake had shining, pure black scales and piercing green eyes. He moved back slightly out of shock and cautiousness. Eventually, the snake actually spoke in a near regal, feminine voice.
~Do not be afraid, young one. I mean you no harm~ the snake stated.
~Wait! How can I hear you?! Snakes don't talk!~ Harry exclaimed.
~You can hear me as you are a speaker, hence why you can respond to me~ the snake replied.
~What do you mean? What's a speaker?~ Harry asked.
~A speaker is a magical being who can understand and speak the language of the serpents. Your kind call our language 'Parseltongue', I believe~ the snake answered.
This threw Harry for a loop now. 'Magical beings'? But his uncle told him that magic wasn't real! Everyone did! In fact, the mere mention of magic enraged the Dursleys, so he avoided the subject entirely. This had to be some sort of joke to get him into trouble. Well, he wouldn't fall for it.
~'Magical being'? You can't be serious. Magic isn't real. I bet this is all a big joke. Ha ha, very funny Dudley! You can come out now and bring that voice mixer with you! I'm no fool!~ Harry said, not believing what he was hearing.
~And who told you that? Your relatives? The very same people who hate your existence and beat you? I can assure you that this is no joke. I have been watching you for many months now, Harry Potter, and have been appalled by what I have seen. If my mother's witch was here, she would've killed them~ the snake hissed angrily.
Harry merely stared at the snake and closed his eyes. He must be hallucinating, that's it. He was that tired of the Dursleys that he was having hallucinations of a talking snake because he wanted a friend for once.
"This is just a hallucination. Snakes don't talk. Magic isn't real. I'm not falling for this, neither will I go mad because of my relatives," Harry whispered to himself.
Sabrina shook her head in despair. These muggles had truly wronged him if he didn't believe her. By the looks of it, he seemed to be thinking that she was merely a hallucination by the way he closed his eyes and started to rub them like he was trying to get rid of something. Time for plan B.
~Tell me, Harry...did you ever make anything happen when you were angry or scared? Did you at anytime close your eyes before something bad was about to happen to you and then you opened them to find yourself somewhere else without your knowledge?~ Sabrina asked.
Harry thought about this and remembered when he was five years old and Dudley had cornered him at school. When Dudley was about to hit him and he closed his eyes, he opened them to find himself on the school roof and Dudley had punched the wall. This was the first time that he had mentioned magic and Vernon had gone ballistic, beating him up and throwing him into the cupboard under the stairs where he slept while profusely stating that magic was not real.
Harry put two and two together and finally realised why his relatives feared him and anything related to magic. It was real, and they were scared in case he learned how to use it.
~So...it's all real? It just seems so surreal...Hang on, why would your mother's witch kill the Dursleys? More to the point; how do you know my name?~ Harry clarified.
~You really don't know anything, do you?~ the snake asked incredulously.
Harry shook his head for two reasons. The first was in answer to the definitely real female snake's voiced question as he had no idea what it meant. The second was for thinking that the Dursleys were smart or capable enough to pull off such a prank. Certainly Dudley wasn't. Plus, they would never mention magic or his name without a flinch afterwards, so it was impossible for it to be so smooth if they were trying to prank him. He saw the snake shake her head in response, proving that she truly understood him and could respond to him for sure.
~Then I shall tell you. Many years ago, a war began between light and dark wizards and witches. The dark side was led by a self-titled Lord named Voldemort. He was equal to the power that the leader of the light, Albus Dumbledore, had at the beginning, but his power only grew the more he decimated his enemies. It got to a stage where too many innocents were being killed by Voldemort and his allies, the Death Eaters. They were dark times...my mother and her witch didn't survive, just as your parents didn't...~ the snake explained.
~I'm sorry...it sounds horrible...~ Harry replied respectfully.
~It was horrible. Everyone was either afraid of Voldemort, hence why most people still fear his name to this day, or died if they fought against him. Eventually, something happened when he went after you and your parents. He killed your mother and father, yet you somehow survived the killing curse. No-one has ever done that. Your parents loved you enough to sacrifice themselves for you after fighting against the Dark Lord's oppression. They were heroes, unlike what your relatives say. In the Wizarding World, you are famous as 'the Boy-Who-Lived' as you were able to finally rid him from this world. However, I fear that he is not truly gone. With all of the dark rituals that he did to increase his power, I wouldn't be surprised if he found a way to prevent himself from being killed by a rebounded curse~ the snake explained.
~So that's what happened? I always knew that the Dursleys had to be lying when they said that my parents died in a car crash and were drunk layabouts. But, if he really isn't gone, then what can I do if he comes back to get me? I can't fight him!~ Harry responded, frightened at what he had heard.
~We need to get you prepared. You need to be trained...now! A great wrong was done upon you by being sent here as it has stunted your growth. Everyone will expect a noble, heroic boy with the finest clothes and manners, but instead they will get a petite, fragile one. We must change this. I can see that something is not right and we need to figure it out~ the snake answered firmly.
~But how am I supposed to train with the Dursleys around? I would be beaten if I even show any signs of magic or try to escape!~ Harry exclaimed.
~I know what to do. Go out onto the street and wish for the Knight Bus to appear. Trust me...~ the snake replied.
Harry nodded and picked his new serpentine friend up and allowed her to slither into his sleeve as he did as she instructed. After closing his eyes and wishing for the Knight Bus to appear, all of a sudden a purple triple-decker bus faded into view before coming to a screeching halt next to him. He couldn't believe it. It really worked. As he stared at the bus in awe, the attendant appeared and spoke to him, giving a customary greeting.
"Hello and welcome to the Knight Bus; travel for any stranded witch or wizard. Where do you need to go, sir?" the attendant said politely.
~Ask for the Leaky Cauldron~ the snake instructed.
"The Leaky Cauldron," Harry answered.
The attendant nodded, gave Harry a ticket, then allowed him onto the bus as it sped off towards his destination. On the bus, he realised something that he quite rudely had forgotten to ask his new friend.
~I'm sorry that I never asked before, but what's your name?~ Harry asked in a hushed voice so that the attendant didn't hear him, remembering what his friend said about the prejudice of speakers.
~My name is Sabrina, thank you for asking. Since that it finally out of the way, will you bond with me and let me be your familiar? I have sensed your latent power and know what you have been through, so I want to help you to be the best that you can~ Sabrina asked hesitantly, as if she expected to be rejected by him.
Harry remembered reading some books on myths, legends and folklore and encountered the concept of a witch's familiar from these. A familiar was there to help the witch with their endeavours and was their most trusted companion. They could even feel each other's emotions. Due to the trust that he had for Sabrina, he wouldn't refuse to have her as he familiar as she was already helping him so much.
~Of course I'll bond with you. You're my friend, aren't you? And friends are supposed to help each other, right?~ Harry responded.
Sabrina smiled heartily, or at least Harry thought that he saw a possible smile, before rubbing his arm affectionately. Apologising in advance, she carefully pricked his arm with her fangs and injected a tiny amount of venom into his bloodstream. However, instead of causing any harm like venom usually would, it merely washed over him and made him feel stronger and healthier. Due to her intentions, Sabrina had been able to make her venom heal him, rather than harm him, and bond with him. The bond between the two of them was confirmed when she saw the marks on his arm heal almost instantaneously.
When the bond was confirmed, Sabrina wrapped herself around Harry's arm to keep herself hidden and comfortable. Eventually, they reached their destination and got off the bus before entering the pub. Sneaking around the walls of the pub, which was fortunately filled with mainly muggles, Sabrina told Harry to go around the back and knock on a certain order of bricks in the wall, which then moved aside to allow him to enter Diagon Alley for the first time.
A/N: Hope you enjoyed that guys and think that giving some further backstory of Harry's life before he turns 11 was ok. I'll be uploading the next four chapters as well as they're also finished, so stay tuned. Bye guys.