In the early years of King Robert's reign, his firstborn was considered dead barely a day after his birth. Robert was enraged beyond belief his trueborn son couldn't even survive a day when his bastards in the Vale and Stormlands could. The presumed dead boy couldn't be found. Despite the Queen's insistence that the boy is dead and she only wanted to grieve him, the King demanded a search of the Red Keep and the surrounding areas believing the boy to be alive and stolen. Little did he know the Prince could not survive in a world devoid of magic shifting to another world and another castle to hone his talents and return when magic bloomed again.
Queen Cersei and Lady Stark in Bran's sickroom.
"Handsome one isn't he? I lost my first boy. Black haired same as he, with my eyes. He was a fighter too. Robert was crazed beat his hands against the wall. They took him away. I never saw him again. I pray to the Mother every night that she return your child to you."
"I am grateful."
"Perhaps this time she will listen."
Lord and Lady Stark in Petyr Baelish's brothel.
Lady Stark finished relaying all that happened from the fire in Winterfell, Bran's direwolf, and her arrival in King's Landing.
Eddard Stark sat in thought. Bran's wolf had saved the boy's life and he had killed Sansa's. Jon's words came back to him, your children were meant to have these pups. After asking for a moment alone with his wife. He gave her orders.
"Once you are home, send word to Helman Tallhart and Galbart Glover under my seal. They are to raise a hundred bowmen each and fortify Moat Cailin. Two hundred determined archers can hold the Neck against an army. Instruct Lord Manderly that he is to strengthen and repair all his defenses at White Harbor, and see that they are well manned."
Joffrey with Cersei tending to his wounds and speaking of the direwolf.
"You killed the beast and spared the girl for the love your father bore her father."
"But I didn't," protested Joffrey.
"You did," cut in Cersei. "Someday you will sit on the throne and the truth will be what you make it. You are my darling boy and the world will be as you want it to be."
Joffrey bit his lip. "I am your eldest?"
"You are," confirmed Cersei tilting her head her green eyes shadowed.
"You say the truth will be what I make of it. Is that what you're doing right now?"
"What are you trying to say?" she said trying to keep old memories at bay.
Joffrey stood and walked towards the window looking out. "They say... They say I had a brother. So bold and strong he grabbed father's finger in a tight grip. They say he looked like father too and had your eyes and that he didn't cry too much. That he was happy and even made Uncle Stannis smile and was loved by all who saw him until he died. Lord Jon believed he is still alive and that father started drinking even more because of him. I heard him telling someone about it."
"Who was Jon Arryn speaking to?" demanded Cersei.
"I don't know," said Joffrey stiffly turning back to her, "I had a brother didn't I?"
Cersei wilted in her seat looking at Joffrey but not seeing him.
"You did," she said softly after some time, "he was... my first."
Her eyes cleared when she noticed Joffrey looking at her intently. "He died as a baby," she said briskly, "he wasn't strong enough to live. You and Tommen are my living sons. You are stronger than him. Do not take these tales to heart. Your brother is gone. Do not speak of him again. I've mourned him enough. Leave me now."
Joffrey hastened to obey. He had never seen his mother be unsure of herself.
Lord Stark's thoughts after being told about Lord Arryn's visits to the blacksmith and a brothel.
Jon Arryn and Stannis Baratheon had been cordial, but never friendly. After Jon's death and Robert's ride to Winterfell, Stannis had left for Dragonstone with no word of his return. He would need to visit this blacksmith and find this brothel. Every person who had any inkling about Jon Arryn had left King's Landing and this vexed him.
He could summon Stannis from Dragonstone immediately or wait until he could find out more on the matter. It would have to wait for the time being. The tourney and council sessions consumed his time enough. As for now, he had time to visit the blacksmith.
When a Khal dies, his horse is slain with him, so he might ride into the night lands. The bodies are burned beneath the open sky and the khal rises on his fiery steed to take his place among the stars.
"There," pointed one of Drogo's blood riders. Dany looked and saw it. The star was a comet burning red. Blood red. Fire red. The Dragon's tail. A strong sign. She took the torch and thrust it into the funeral pyre.
She knew what she must do. She felt it resonating within her. Slowly she took her steps entering the pyre. There came a crack as she stepped into the flames. And then a second crack loud as thunder. She wasn't afraid. The fire was hers. The third crack was the loudest.
When the fire died, they saw her naked, covered with soot, clothes turned to ash, and unharmed. On her left thigh a cream-and-gold dragon on her right thigh a green-and bronze, and draped across her shoulders the black-and-scarlet beast with its head raised, eyes as red as coals.
She rose to her feet and for the first time in a hundred years, the calls of dragons stirred in the night.
Harry's weary eyes flickered open. He was supposed to be dead perhaps this time he was but he wasn't sure whether death had claimed him. He was near trees rather fitting he would wake in a place similar to where he chose to die.
It was familiar, comforting but not the forest he was accustomed to. This was not the Forbidden Forest. Was he dead? It didn't seem like it he still ached. This wasn't like the first time he had died. The smell of the forest was comforting despite the unfamiliarity. He slowly struggled to his feet as his eyes adjusted to the low light. The sun was rising slowly but surely.
Last he remembered he was in the Great Hall. There was a strong magical backlash as the Elder Wand came to him and that was all he could remember. How he was back in the forest he didn't know, well a different forest once he looked around closely at the trees. Wait were those faces? He steadily walked towards the closest tree with a face.
He wasn't afraid nor apprehensive. The forest had never deterred him before but he had a peculiar feeling this wasn't the forest he knew. The tree was white and large with red leaves the color of blood. The face that was carved in the trunk looked as though it were weeping. Harry touched the sap to feel the consistency.
His mind was assaulted by images of snow, buildings, and people. Fast flashes that felt like occlumency lessons but a thousand times worse. It stopped soon after and he was left with a pounding headache on the forest floor gasping for breath.
Struggling to gain his bearing he could feel eyes upon him. Yet whenever he looked around he could see no one. He wanted to get out of here but he could feel the flow of magic resonating from every tree. He wanted to know more and his curiosity won over as it had countless times before. He reached out to touch the sap again.
His mind was assaulted again. This time the images came a bit slower. He could see a strong man beating his hands against a wall and a woman with tears in a bed. It shifted. He now saw a man clad in white and a woman in drabs walking swiftly. It shifted. He saw the same strong man clad in armor with antlers swinging a massive hammer at another with three dragons on his front. It shifted. He saw a massive structure made of ice from a distance. It shifted. He saw men and smaller creatures in a clearing which seemed familiar. It shifted. He saw dragons massive ones with riders as they breathed fire on a large castle. Suddenly the images stopped and he was back on the forest floor breathing hard. His headache wasn't as bad as the first time.
"Enough experimenting Harry," he said admonishing himself. He felt drained after the ordeal and wished to find a place to nap. He didn't want to sleep in the forest though. He had his fill of spending nights in forests lately and with Voldemort dead, he was free to do as he pleased.
He walked slowly and carefully through the trees. There were many of them some with faces some without. He could still feel eyes upon him yet couldn't pinpoint who or what was watching him. After walking for a significant distance he finally found the shore. He was on an island, was it? Didn't matter he could conjure a boat then use the spell Hagrid used to propel the boat to the opposite shore.
As the boat made its way he saw the large castle from his vision the one with dragons with riders breathing fire on it. It looked different from the vision more ruined. Dragonfire must have done that. After what seemed like forever in his tired state he reached the shore where he vanished the boat.
He trudged on towards a road he glimpsed exhausted and tired. He had been awake for more than a day and all the events that had transpired were truly knocking him out. His eyes were drooping when he saw two people on horseback. They slowed on his approach.
"Please," he pleaded. "I nee- " He couldn't finish as he collapsed.
Ser Rodrik dismounted quickly and reached for the boy. There was a pulse. The boy was alive and looking at his gaunt figure in need of food and rest. He was dressed in an odd fashion and had scarce belongings.
"My lady, he is weak and in need of a good meal."
"There is an inn at the crossroads up ahead," said Catelyn.
"An inn would be too risky. Perhaps it is best to seek out some holdfast…"
Catelyn raised a hand stopping him. She was looking at the boy closely. Black hair and slim. Appearing from the side of the road where there was only the God's Eye and nothing else.
She dismounted as well and came close to him. The boy groaned as he woke. His eyes flickered open and she saw his eyes. Eyes similar to those she had seen only a few moons earlier a vivid green which graced the eyes of the Queen. It wasn't possible. The boy hadn't been seen in years. He was presumed dead. In fact, the Queen had mentioned him and his death when she was sitting at Bran's bedside.
"Please, I am exhausted and want to find a place to rest," he said.
"And you will. What is your name?" she asked.
"Can you mount a horse, Harry?"
"Ser Rodrik, help him onto the horse. He rides with us."
Ser Rodrik did as she bade and then whispered, "It will be a difficult ride, my lady."
"Difficult it may be. Did you chance to look upon his face?"
"His eyes did you notice any resemblance to someone of import?"
"I cannot place it, my lady," Ser Rodrik said wondering.
"The eyes of the Queen, Ser Rodrik and if I am certain we have found the missing prince or rather he has revealed himself."
"The missing prince, my lady, it could not be. It's a matter long gone."
"A matter long gone and forgotten to most but not all. There is an inn not far off at the crossroads ahead. We can bed there, help him build his strength and find out more."
Harry woke up as they neared the inn.
"Sleep well enough," came a gruff voice.
"It was all right. Best I could get after so long," answered Harry drowsily.
"When was the last time you slept?"
"Two days or so."
"How old are you Harry?" asked Catelyn listening in.
"Seventeen," answered Harry. "Why are we on horseback? Where are we headed?"
"We're making for that inn at the moment then on our way to Winterfell." The age had matched him thought Catelyn as well as the name.
"Yes, that is our home in the North. Where is your home, Harry?"
Harry wasn't sure. He would have said Hogwarts without hesitation before but now his home had been sullied by Voldemort and it pained him to think about it.
"I… I don't know."
"How did you come by us?"
"I was on the island in that lake. Paddled over and found you."
Ser Rodrik and Catelyn shared a glance. The prince was on the Isle of Faces. Could he have been there all along with the green men if they still existed?
"I should be dead," mused Harry. "Thought I was dead but I woke up in the forest. The white tree with a face called to me."
Catelyn looked at Harry hard. Her suspicions and observations kept jumping from certainty to uncertainty when it came to the prince.
Soon enough they had rooms in the inn. The boy was asleep once again. Restless at first then calm as a baby.
The supper bells rang with deafening noise. Harry had jumped up a stick in his hand, eyes blazing. It took him a minute to notice his surroundings and a surprised Catelyn looking at him with astonished eyes.
Harry hid his wand quickly. "I… I wasn't expecting that," he said in a way of apology.
"Come, Harry," said Catelyn concerned for the boy. "Let's find Ser Rodrik and have a good meal."
The benches were crowded with people. To Harry, it seemed like the welcoming feast or end of term feast but without the grandness of the Great Hall and a High Table. Ser Rodrik found them a place near the kitchens.
"Are you a knight?" asked Harry.
"That I am," answered Ser Rodrik. "It would be best if I answered your questions once we got back to our rooms."
Harry frowned slightly. There was something secretive going on with the two who had found him. They had taken care of him though and brought him to a place where he could rest and eat. He silently cast a notice-me-not charm on them which was the least he could do just as the man across from them started talking.
"Seven blessings to you goodfolk."
"And to you as well," said Catelyn.
"Have you seen the Dragon's tail? Such a star. They say it will usher in a new age and it's a sign from the gods blessing the Hand of the King."
Harry tuned out the conversation. He wanted answers and he wouldn't get any right now. So he did what he had done for the past year, sit sullenly and brood.
It was good fortune Lannister hadn't noticed them thought Catelyn as they convened in her room. She had a feeling to have Ser Rodrik approach him through the innkeep or the black brother to bring him here to see his nephew and answer for his crimes.
"Aye, I am a knight. And this is Lady Stark of Winterfell. Keep this to yourself we wish to remain unknown."
"Are you in danger?"
"Not in danger. It is best to remain cautious in uncertain times."
Uncertain times. That was a Dumbledore saying. "Is there a war?"
"No war yet, thank the gods."
"What do you remember, Harry?"
"I've told you my story."
"Was that all, Harry? All that you remember," said Catelyn softly shooting a glance at Ser Rodrik.
"I remember more, I'm not willing to share right now."
"Do you remember your parents?"
"What kind of question is that?" spat Harry angrily. "They're dead. Every... wait I'm... sorry my parents are dead." Harry knew now he was in a different world or a different dimension. He remembered Hermione's theories best not to think of her now.
Catelyn took a shot in the dark. "Harry, does a stag or lion mean anything to you?"
Harry inhaled sharply. "They both do."
She was sure this was the missing prince now, all doubts had vanished. "Rest well, tomorrow we ride for Riverrun."
"Riverrun, my lady?" said Ser Rodrik.
"Yes, I will reveal myself when we get to the castle. It won't be far from King's Landing and we can send a rider to Ned so he can give the news to the King."
"Very well, my lady."
"News to the King? About me?" asked Harry suspiciously rising from his seat. "What's so special about me? Who even is the King?"
"All will be explained when we reach Riverrun, Harry. It will be safer that way please be patient for a little while longer. And the King is Robert Baratheon," said Catelyn.
The name brought images to his mind. Images he got from the tree. A tall strong man beating the wall and the same man in armor with antlers. His head pounded again and he sat back down.
"Are you all right?"
"Lie down and rest we will talk on the morrow."
Tyrion had a restful sleep, the time on the road did not suit him that well. From here there were two choices to him, Casterly Rock or King's Landing. Each with its own share of benefits and drawbacks. His father or sister. Jaime or his cousins. Watch his actions carefully or have some relaxation. It was decided King's Landing it was. He'd have Yoren's company and send him back with a compliment of recruits. He slid onto the bench beside an old man as Yoren joined him to break his fast.
"Lord Tyrion," said the old man next to him as they finished. "I request to speak with you in private."
Tyrion recognized that voice. It was the old master-at-arms of Winterfell.
"Ser Rodrik, how unexpected to see you here," he said.
"Circumstances have led me here. May we take our leave?"
"Yes, of course. I'm surprised you have need of me."
Ser Rodrik looked at him gravely. "It is a matter of great import, my lord. Best be spoken in private."
"Lead the way, ser."
Entering the room, Tyrion was surprised yet again.
"Lady Stark, an unexpected pleasure," he said, "I'm sorry to have missed you at Winterfell."
Her gaze was stony as she regarded him. He wondered what he could have possibly done in Winterfell to have such animosity first from the son now from the mother.
"I do not understand, Lady Stark, from when I left for the Wall and then returned to Winterfell, you Starks have become quite inhospitable. First your son and now you. What has caused such a change?" he asked perplexed.
"You wish to understand?" she said coldly.
"I very much would like to," he replied.
"An assassin armed with your dagger attempted to kill my son in his bed. You were a guest in my house and conspired to murder him."
This was a day filled with surprises. "I had no part in any attack on your son. On my honor-"
"Lannister honor," she cut in raising her hands for him to see. "Your dagger left these scars."
"I swear to it Lady Stark. It was not my dagger. Only a fool would arm a common footpad with his blade. I have no cause to murder your son. I wish no ill will upon him. I called upon Winterfell to ask for his well being and designed a saddle for him to to be able to ride."
Doubt flickered in her eyes. "Why would Petyr lie to me?"
"Littlefinger," his voice rose, "because it is in his nature. Lying comes easily to him. He has even claimed-," Tyrion paused for a young man he had not noticed stirred from the bed in the corner.
"What's going on?" the boy asked blinking his eyes open.
Tyrion was transfixed. Those green eyes reminded him of his brother.
"Apologies for waking you Harry, but it is time you got up," said Lady Stark.
"Harry?" questioned Tyrion his mind racing. "Was this why I was brought up?"
"It is, Lannister. We are riding for Riverrun from where we will proceed with this matter. We happened upon him by chance."
"I see, I will accompany you. And rest assured Lady Stark I will help you find whoever wished to murder your son."
She took time to consider his words, "My thanks, Lord Tyrion."
A/N: Harry will be slightly different from canon. Differences will be revealed in the story. This will mostly be using the books and some show influence. Reviews appreciated. Please do mention what you liked or disliked or anything I could improve. It would really help.