I've written other stories but this is my first HP fanfic. Harry gets to spend his summer with one of his least favorite people. I know, not an original concept but I think I still managed to make it interesting. No slash! This story can be considered complete but it will have a sequel covering the school year. Reviews welcome, flames will be fed to the blast-ended screwts.
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and all these other great characters belong to J.K. Rowling. I just play with them!
1. A good summer, but not for everyone.
Harry was having one of the best summers of his life. Yes, he was still with the Dursleys. But like last year, he had his trunk, wand and books with him in his room, and Hedwig as well. The Dursleys were still afraid of his godfather, and increasingly afraid of him, Harry, too. After all, he was more than halfway through Hogwarts now (although, of course, the Dursleys never mentioned it by name), and while they knew he wasn't allowed to do any magic during the summer holidays, they knew he could, and would, if he was pushed too far. The Accidental Magic Reversal Squad had modified Aunt Marge's memory after the incident two summers ago, but Uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia and Dudley remembered exactly what happened.
Last year's almost non-existent meals had also improved. Mealtimes at the Dursley house would never be Harry's favorite, since it meant he had to be in the same room with his family, but at least there was real food on the table again. Dudley had hardly lost any weight last summer, and during the school year had managed to procure a lot of extra food. Harry figured he'd bullied and stolen it from his school mates. They still didn't stock school uniforms big enough for him, but Aunt Petunia had taken Dudley to a tailor and had some made on order, especially for 'her Dudleykins'.
Which brought up another thing that Harry had been able to improve; he finally wore clothes that fit him. He'd exchanged some galleons for Muggle money at Gringott's, cursing himself he hadn't thought of doing so when he'd seen Hermione's parents exchange their Muggle money at the start of their second year. In the end, it had been Hermione who had suggested it, rolling her eyes as she asked him how he could have overlooked something so obvious. He'd bought himself some Muggle jeans, T-shirts and shorts through mail order.
That was the one major downside to the summer, he couldn't go to the mall to do his shopping, or anywhere else for that matter. Since Voldemort had risen again, Dumbledore had placed several strong wards on the Dursley's house, without the Dursley's knowing of course, and made Harry promise not to leave the premises unless one of the teachers from Hogwarts or another trusted older wizard was with him. Harry had reluctantly agreed. Voldemort would still love to get his hands on him, he didn't doubt that. And he hadn't left the house much in any of the previous summers, either. But it still irked him a bit, he was almost fifteen years old, and finally had some Muggle money of his own; if it wasn't for Voldemort he would've gone shopping for some clothes and books, and there were one or two Muggle movies that didn't sound too bad… Oh well, it wasn't to be. At least he could avoid the Dursleys most of the day by staying up in his room, reading, exchanging letters with his friends, and studying.
Meanwhile, the Dursleys were not having a good summer at all. After last year's incident of the Ton-Tongue Toffee, Dudley was even more scared of Harry than before. At dinner time, he sat as far from Harry as he could manage, and ate while constantly glancing at Harry to make sure he didn't do anything to the food. The toffee hadn't been Harry's, but that didn't seem to make a difference in Dudley's mind.
Uncle Vernon didn't like Harry one bit better than ever, and the fact that he was afraid to yell at him too much didn't do him any good. Harry could recall several times when his uncle had started to holler about one thing or another, then stopped and almost choked. His uncle's eyes had bulged, and his face had been redder than Harry had ever seen it, even that time five years ago when they had tried to outrun Hogwart's letters. Twice, Uncle Vernon had literally staggered out of the room, his breath ragged, and hadn't appeared again the rest of the day. Harry was slightly worried his uncle might have a heart attack, and tried not to do anything to aggravate him. Something which, while noble, was also rather futile, for his being there was aggravating in itself. Uncle Vernon knew quite well he was there, even when he was upstairs in his room.
Aunt Petunia spent all her time worrying about Uncle Vernon and Dudley. She fussed over both of them, comforting them with words that were all but friendly to Harry, right under his nose. Harry himself didn't care about the remarks, he already knew how well his aunt liked him, and she, too, never addressed him directly like that any more That was good enough for him. Dudley revelled in his mother's attention, allowing her to dote on him and smiling at her snide remarks about Harry (but only when he thought Harry wasn't looking). Uncle Vernon responded badly to her doting care. He tensed when she tussled his hair, and he gritted his teeth when she spoke. Harry wasn't sure if she truly didn't see how Uncle Vernon reacted, or that she couldn't help herself and carried on in spite of it because she, too, was stressed beyond her ability to cope.
No, it wasn't an easy summer for the Dursleys, and there were three weeks yet to go.