Synopsis: From a young age, Harry could never understand the differences between the way he was treated by the Dursleys and the way the other boy in the house was. But he never thought it could change. How will the re-emergence of one lost godfather alter Harry's little life?

Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter

Warnings: Child abuse, probably slash in later chapters

A/N: This is a rewrite of my old story 'The Fire' as when I now read over it, the flaws and plotholes jump out at me like actors in a haunted house attraction. I would also like to apologise for the lack of activity for the past few years and announce a temporary hiatus on my other stories for the duration of this one as I don't want to spread myself too thin and am also attempting to prioritise my health. Thank you.


In a perfectly normal county, there was a perfectly normal borough, and in that perfectly normal borough there was a perfectly normal town, and in that perfectly normal town, there was a perfectly normal house.

In this perfectly normal house, however, there was not a perfectly normal family. Not one member could qualify for even a moderately normal patch, even when the strange going on within the house were ignored.

Mr Vernon Dursley was a large man with a stomach often compared by neighbours in quiet voices to that of a hippopotamus or unfortunately large walrus, whose face had a tendency to turn an unflattering shade of puce only a man such as Vernon Dursley could quite achieve. It was almost impressive. If he had gone a shade darker, one might have feared he was suffering from severe asphyxiation and call for a doctor, of course after taking a note of the colour for paint shades. He had a short and hot temper and was quick to anger, though only really in relation to one person.

Mrs Petunia Dursley was quite the opposite of her husband, all long and thin, with a long neck and a face often compared to a horse. The horse in question took offence to being compared to such a being and threw its rider, it might be noted. She had a horribly high and grating voice and drab dark hair that hung in dull clumps on her scalp. She was also quick to anger in relation to one, not so much to others, and constantly strived towards unachievable perfection.

Mr Dudley Dursley was rather like his father. He fit into the same weight category of 'Dangerously Obese' and was often likened to a baby whale, to which many would reply with the statement that any baby whale would weigh less and be much prettier than the cruel boy. He was a bully to anything beneath him, people, animals, even ants. At the age of barely three, he had discovered how to use somebody's broken eyeglasses to make animals burn and hurt. A year later he discovered the water hose and the ant hill un the back garden. He was truly not a nice child.

And finally, by far the least abnormal of the family, was one Mr Harry James Potter, despite quite how unusual the boy was. His frame was far too small for a boy of his age, his black hair was too messy, his eyes were almost too green, piercing and powerful, awe and fear-inspiring at once, and of course, his scar stood out, pale against his skin. But the many strange occurrences that surrounded Harry were not what made him not normal - for they were perfectly normal for a wizarding child. What distinguished Harry was his incredible power. His magical core was larger than the average adult wizard at only eight and a half and still growing and far too in touch with his body and mind. His magic flowed freely through his body. It was wonderful but oh so very abnormal.

And that was what made every other occupant of the perfectly normal house despise the poor child - his magic. It was unnatural to them, sinful and shameful, something to hide and punish. Punished it was, too, within the house, not in the regular way of groundings or being sent to bed without a snack, but in a much worse way. In a way that truly made the occupants of the house abnormal.

A way that spoke clearly of each occupant of the house. A way that was violently depicted on the smallest occupant's body in the form of scars and injuries that would not get the chance to heal.

A way that was currently inflicting more injuries.

The crash of Harry being thrown into the cupboard resounded through the house but not indeed through its walls to be heard by anybody but the occupants of the house. The door was slammed shut on the crying boy, who curled up, bleeding and terrified.

'Please God, please help me. I need a friend. Maybe send an angel... The nicest angel you have?' The small boy's prayer was cut off as his consciousness was lost to his blood loss.


The gods, as it seemed, owed the boy a favour, as many miles away, on a small dark island a howling dog finally noticed something he ought to have noticed about seven years ago.

Sirius Black may not have been the smartest of dogs, but he was smart enough to notice that something was off. The dementors glided past him without a pause, a rare occurrence, he had always been a favourite of theirs, they just loved sucking all the good memories from him.

He ceased his howling to wonder why this might be when he spotted a human guard coming. He contemplated shifting back, avoiding being discovered as an animagus, but it was already too late.

The guard was shouting, loudly.

"Hey, hey Blake, come here!" She yelled out, shock in her voice. Sirius skunk back in fear, thinking they were going to move him to a higher level and put him in anti-animagus cuffs and take away his few moments of freedom.

Blake came over, looking at the cell and the dog before at his companion.

"Where's Black?" He demanded.

"I don't know! The dementors just passed right past the cell so I investigated and there's just a dog!"

"No chance of it being an animagus?" Blake questioned.

Sirius forced himself not to stiffen. What were they teaching these stupid new Aurors? Moody must have retired for them to be this bad. Honestly.

"No, Black isn't registered as an animagus and it'd have been caught in his trial if he was unregistered, wouldn't it? We need to report this and get that poor dog out of there." The female guard said, looking in sympathy to the Grim.

Blake frowned at the dog before caving. "Alright. But where did the dog come from?" He asked, clearly not satisfied. As he shouldn't be, Sirius thought, but he could see them both caving into the idea of him having already escaped.

"I don't know. It looks like a stray. Black must have grabbed it and left it here to stall us." The woman decided. "Let's get it out of here. It looks terrified." She said, opening the door to the cell.

Sirius could not believe it. This... It made no sense. They were letting him go. They were helping him escape...

He walked out slowly when he was encouraged by the female Auror. He had no clue what her name was.

"Wait, this feels wrong, Black could-" Blake cut off suddenly, merely nodding and closing the cell door. Sirius looked up at him, confused, but allowed himself to picked up by the female Auror.

An hour later, after a small test to check he had no enchantments on him, not deep enough to see an animagus transformation, Sirius was taken by the female Auror to her home. It was beautiful, she was clearly a Light Pureblood, the room they were in decorated in pale icy blues.

He still couldn't comprehend what had happened. He was free. Free at last...

He looked up at the female Auror, who had brought him some food. Chicken and rice. She obviously had no dog food.

"Here you go, pal. Once you've eaten I'll get you down to the vets and to a shelter. They'll take care of you," She cooed over him, scratching him behind the ear. He licked her hand before turning to eat the food, enjoying the plain boiled rice and baked chicken. He wouldn't be staying around long enough to be taken to the vets. He had to go and do something. Find Harry and Peter, clear his name, do whatever he could to help Remus. He couldn't imagine what a state his friend would be in, seven years without his pack...

When the Auror next left the room, leaving her wand on the table, he relaxed, gulping down the last of his food before grabbing the wand in his jaws. He used the magic of it to go to the last place he remembered seeing Harry, Godric's Hollow, the crack of Apparition and the licked clean plate the only thing left of the black Grim.


When Harry woke the next morning, he could see the light pouring in through the cracks of the door. He automatically began to panic.

The Dursleys would be awake. They would want breakfast and he had to move now. He tentatively pushed at the door, thinking it would still be locked and knowing he would be punished if it was and he didn't get out. He would also be punished if he did.

Thankfully the door was open and he hurried out, heading straight for the kitchen silently as he could, hurrying, almost tripping over his own feet in his rush. He stopped dead when he entered the kitchen to find a man standing at his stove, in the middle of cooking some eggs, humming quietly to himself. The man looked up at him, the movement seeming nearly painful, his sunken grey eyes sparkling as he looked at the small boy in the doorway.

"Harry, pup, you've grown!"


A/N: Oops, a cliffhanger and total change of how Sirius escaped! Thank you for reading and review if you wish - it might even give me enough motivation to get up new chapters too!