The wind was harsh and her hair whipped her face in cruel, unforgiving motions. Her toes were cold and bitten and her legs burned from the exhaustion but she did not stop. Keeping the bundle craddled in her arms close so her chest she pulled her thick, deep crimson cloak closer to her body.
Striding forward she followed the tether towards where she could sense a pool of defensive magic. Coming to a stop on a small village street, she stood facing a row of thatched cottages.
She let the feeling of the cold bitter air wash over her before she stepped forward over the intensely oppressive boundary surrounding one particular cottage, over the threshold until a feeling of warmth and homeliness seemed to wrap around her.
As she approached the front door she steeled her nerves, wiped the tears from her face and knocked.
There was the sound of feet slapping on wood as one of the houses inhabitants rushed towards the front of the house. The footsteps were decidedly light but not childish in quality so the inhabitant was probably female and in good physical health.
The door swung open to reveal a hassled looking young woman with red/auburn hair a few shades lighter than her own deep scarlett ringlets and sparkling green eyes. In another world they could have been sisters.
"Who are you? How are you here?" The woman's bright green eyes, so similar to her own, were popping and her mouth was the perfect horrified 'O'.
Letting a weak smile she spoke with a light Russian accent, "Do not worry. I do not know where I am. I only detected the heavy warding surrounding this establishment and I am in need of them. Please, I need your help. I bring you no harm. I can swear it on my magic! Please!"
The young woman in front of her looked down for a second before blinking a couple of times and then stepping aside and allowing her to enter. She clutched the bundle toghter to her chest as she stepped into the entry way. It was sparsely decorated, leading to the conclusion that the house had recently been moved into. Still it had a homely feel, not the dusty one of a house been left to stand and grow stagnant over time, so it had obviously been cared for.
Taking in every thing surrounding her, she finally turned to face the young woman before her, letting out a shaky breath as everything began to tumble out of her mouth.
She talked of how she had been torn away from her family at a young age and genetically enhanced to become a deadly, agile weapon. How she had fallen pregnant and the leaders of the organisation she belonged to wanted her child to experiment on. That due to her genetic enhancements her child would inherit them and be used as she was, to become the perfect killing machine in human form.
By the time she had explained this the young woman had led her to kitchen and sat her down at the table. She sat across from her, her mouth yet again open in a horrified 'O' at the tale being told to her.
"I couldn't let them take my child. I need to hide him. Somewhere they will never find. They are but muggles. They do not know of magic and he will be safe here. Hidden beneath your wards. Even if it is but for a few years. They will stop searching soon. Please. You must take him and raise him as your own." She was begging now.
"But he is your child. You would willingly give him up to a complete stranger."
"It is for his own protection and I would not leave him in your custody if I did not deem you a worthy guardian. I would easily give my life for him if only it ment he would be safe. Please do this for me. If not for me then for my child, he is not yet a week old. Would you let him die when he has his whole life ahead of him. You can save him. Please." The last few words were spoken in a pleading whisper.
The young woman seemed to be thinking rapidly. After a moment's hesitation she nodded her head. "Okay. I'll take him in. You look enough like me for him to pass as my child and just to be on the safe side we'll glamour him for the next few years so he will not be recognised if your organisation does continue to look for him."
All the fight seemed to leave her as she slumped against the kitchen chair in relief. "Thank you." Then after a moment of hesitation, "May I have..." She trailed off at the end but her intention was clear.
"Of course. I'll be in the living room, just call once you're finished." Then she hurried out the room to give her some privacy.
Looking down she carefully pried the bundle away from her chest. A small round face came into view. It was flushed pink and it held whisps of curly red, soft downy hair on its crown. The eyes were open in a baby blue colour that all new borns had but would darken into a forest green in a month or so.
Trailing a finger across his cheek she let a few tears fall. He gazed up at her with an intensely curious look on his face. A small, tiny hand reached up to grasp one of her curls in an action very advanced for a baby but a few days old. That was why she had to give him up. He was special and she couldn't let anybody hurt him.
She reached down to kiss his forehead and felt his tiny hand brush against her cheek.
"I love you so much. More than anything in the world. I'm so sorry. Maybe one day we'll meet again. I do not know whether you will want to but I can hope you will. Always remember you are loved, my child. Nikolai Alekseevich Romanov."
Placing one more kiss to his head, Natalia let out a deep breath before standing and making her way towards the front room. There she slowly handed her child over towards 'Lily', reluctant to give him up.
"I will take care of him. I promise. What's his name?"
"It is better that you name him. People will be less suspicious."
Giving him one last kiss to his head and a whispered 'I love you' she thanked Lily and walked out into the night.
The next morning Nikolai would wake up 'Harry James Potter's to his two parents James and Lily Potter. He would have a glamour placed over him so would appear to have messy black hair and emerald green eyes. His birth mother would fake his death and the Red Room would search for him over Russia. Never once suspecting he might reside in a different country. After all, you can't travel from one country to another in less than an hour.
A/N: I do not read marvel comics so all I have written about Natasha/Natalia I have interpreted and developed from what I saw in the movies. Also Nikolai's name has no significant meaning. I just picked some Russian sounding names (Google baby names). Come on people review! Give me some feedback!