Through early morning fog I see Visions of the things to be, The pains that are withheld for me, I realize and I can see...

That suicide is painless,
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please.

The morning light flared up on the young man sitting on the top of the tower at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He absentmindedly picked at the ancient mortar between two massive stone blocks, and was immune to the beautiful sunrise ahead of him.

It had been this way since the start of term three weeks ago. Each night was a cookie cutter of the night before. Dumbledore or Snape, sometimes both would work with him on the Occlumency sessions, then physically drained, he'd return to Gryffindor tower and fall into a dreamless sleep until two or three am, he'd then throw in his invisibility cloak and head up here until sunrise.

Tonight was a banner night; he had stayed asleep until three. As is usual his mind was set free to think of the night's events. His dreams were his now, Dumbledore and Snape were working on letting him see the events, but as a spectator, with total control rather than forced to watch the events. It was not unlike being in a Pensive at times.

Each night's dream was carefully recorded, and sent off to Dumbledore with Hedwig, tonight was no exception. His eyes grew heavy, and he just wanted a sleep uninterrupted by the events of the world around him.

He began to stand when he felt a presence beside him. He looked wearily at the figure of Albus Dumbledore looking at him with kindness, and worry.

"Care to talk Harry?" Dumbledore asked him.

Harry shook his head slowly, but his mouth opened anyway. "I can't do this Professor; I'm no match for him."

"Not now Harry, but you will be, in time, and given the appropriate training."

Harry turned back to the wall he'd been worrying at. "It's not fair. I'm barely sleeping, and I hardly feel hungry. My friends look at me like a charity case, I can't stand to be around anyone lately." He sighed miserably into his hands. "I just want to be normal for once, you know?"

Dumbledore sat there looking at the young man who wanted so little, and yet that was no doubt to be denied to him forever. He stood up and in a much softer voice than he normally used, said "Perhaps we can push off the Occlumency lessons for a while."

He turned and walked down the stairs. "Try and get some sleep Harry. It's Saturday."

An hour later, Harry followed him down the stairs, and he left his feet lead him where they would. He found himself outside of the Room of Requirement. The door suddenly appeared and somewhat confused, he opened it.

Inside the room was smaller than it had been when he ran the DA, a fireplace glowed in front of an overstuffed chair, and a plate with a glass of milk sat on the left-hand side. The bookshelves were filled with large, sleep inducing volumes that only Hermione could love.

Harry settled himself in the chair and drank the milk; he noticed a soft strain of music as his eyelids slid shut.

Harry awoke and left the Room of Requirement, and headed for Gryffindor tower feeling more relaxed and more like himself than he had felt like in quite a while.

He reached the portrait and gave the password, and stepped inside. The common room was empty, but he shrugged it off looking at the time realized it was noon, and everyone would be downstairs for lunch, he smiled feeling the rumble in his stomach and turned to join them.

The halls were also empty, and Harry's brow furrowed, he opened the doors to the great hall and found the entire school assembled, Albus Dumbledore was about to speak as he entered, and Harry's face went red as all eyes turned to him.

He spotted Ron and Hermione sitting with Ginny and Neville, Harry sighed deeply and walked over to them. "Hey." He took his seat next to Ron, and reached for the bread and butter.

Ron looked at him funny, "Hey" and shrugged to Hermione. Ginny glanced at him curiously and turned to talk to Neville.

Harry ate in piece, no monsters, no dangerous feats; it was a pleasantly relaxing afternoon. He wandered by the lake and lay in the sun, enjoying the warmth on his face. As the sun set, he returned to the castle and the great hall for dinner.

Once again he took his traditional seat with Ron, Hermione, Ginny and Neville, and this time the lack of attention from his friends suddenly seemed palpable, as if they wanted him to leave them alone.

He hurriedly finished dinner and headed back to Gryffindor tower, and his bed. Odd thoughts were spinning in his head, why was everyone ignoring him?

He fell asleep with that nagging thought in his head. The next morning however he woke and found it was nine o'clock in the morning. Ron had let him sleep in, Harry awoke refreshed, and padded off to the bathrooms to shower and change. He grabbed his homework, and headed for the common room.

An hour after starting his essay, the door opened and Ginny came in. Harry saw her and looked up at her, and a smile tugged at his lips. "Hello Ginny." He greeted her.

She stopped and looked at him oddly, "Erm, yes hi." She continued up to her dorm.

Harry sat there gap mouthed what the bloody hell?

He was still sitting there when Ron and Hermione came through the doorway. Harry shook his head slightly. "Oi, Ron, this potions essay is killing me, fancy a game?"

Ron looked at Harry with that same odd look from both lunch and dinner. "Perhaps another time." He then whispered something to Hermione, who giggled and smiling kissed him on the cheek.

Well, when did THAT happen? He watched his friends gaze at each other and part heading for their dorms. Harry sensing the inevitable, returned to his essay, and had only written a few lines when he felt a hand on the back of his neck, softly massaging it, and then working its way to his shoulders.

He dropped his quill and concentrated on enjoying the feelings. An image floated to his mind, Ginny. "Mmmmmmmmm, that feels good." He sighed and leaned back into Lavender Brown's lap.

"What the." he leapt up from where he was sitting, and slammed into the table with his shin, causing him to fall forward over the pile of parchments, and books, making a horrendous mess.

"It's a good thing you are more graceful on a broom." She was smiling at him, "and other places." she let her gaze travel down his frame.

Harry turned red and looked around, there was no one else in the common room, and it was unlike Lavender to make a joke. "You ah, startled me." He said lamely.

Her laughter was light and airy. "Of course I did, but it's one of the things you love about me isn't it Harry?"

"Well, no actually, not really." he said confused and currently unsure of anything.

Lavender's face looked hurt, "What do you mean Harry?" Her tone was icy cold.

Harry looked around; confused "What are you on about Lavender? I've not got time for this nonsense; I've got an essay to write."

"Nonsense? Nonsense? You arrogant git! I don't think I want to go with you anymore!" She stood then glaring at him.

"Anymore? Have you lost it completely Lavender?" Harry was trying to remember any time he had even hinted he'd like to spend time with Lavender.

She took a step towards him and slapped him soundly. Red-faced she turned and stormed up to her dorm.

Harry picked up his mess and put it all away into his bag and headed up to his room he was going to get nothing done this way.

He opened the room and found Ron and Neville playing chess and talking low to each other. Fine! He wants to be like that, fine. Harry dumped off his books and stormed off.

He found himself on the Quidditch pitch, and without thinking withdrew his wand, focused and said "Accio Firebolt". He waited, and waited, growing impatient he said louder "Accio Firebolt!".

A voice behind him said softly, "What makes you think that'll work Potter?"

He turned and saw Ginny with a broom over her shoulder; it looked to be a Comet 360. "Well, it did last year." He said lamely.

"Last year you conjured a Firebolt out of thin air?" he saw the familiar sparkle in her eyes.

"Well, no. I summ." He looked at her closely, "When did you get your ears pierced?"

She looked at him oddly. "I've had them pierced since first year."

Harry rubbed his forehead gently; Ginny's mum had forbidden her to 'mangle her body' as she had put it. One of the muggle girls had given Ginny earrings that required piercing, and her mother had forbidden it. "This is just all wrong." He sat down and Ginny walked over to him.

"You ok then?" there was a look of concern in her eyes.

"No, its ok Gin, thanks things are just odd." he looked up and she was furious.

Her finger jabbed him in the chest. "No one, Potter, calls me that. Do you understand?"

Harry's mouth fell open. "But, your dad."

She slapped Harry in the same place Lavender had struck him earlier. "Of all the people in this school, you have no right to speak of my father."

"G- hey, I'm sorry." He stood and made to comfort her as she had him over the summer. "Is, I mean, do you want to talk about it?"

She looked at him, confused by his actions. "No, and certainly not with you."

Harry, feeling displaced stood there looking oddly at her. "But, I - well, it really wasn't my fault, he's ok though, and I mean we talked just before we boarded the Express."

Ginny glared at him, and then something seemed to strike a chord. "Before we what?"

"Boarded the Hogwarts Express at King's Cross. Your father and I talked about me spending Christmas with you rather than staying here, and seeing if Dumbledore would let me stay the summer rather than at the Dursley." He saw growing confusion in her eyes.
"What in the bloody hell are you talking about Potter?" Harry turned and saw Ron and Hermione. "Why would you spend the holidays with us?"

Harry looked between the three of them, a panic rising in him, his greatest fear taking hold of him. He collapsed on the ground, a splitting pain shooting through his forehead.

He woke in the hospital wing, and heard voices, though he couldn't make out what they were saying. He reached for his glasses, and slid them on and sat up.

"Ah, Mr. Potter has decided to join us in the land of the conscious." Dumbledore's face swam into view. He appeared healthy and was smiling at him warmly. Behind him he saw the faces of Ron, Hermione and Ginny looking worried.

"Tell me Harry, what has transpired since the morning of September the first?" Dumbledore sat at the foot of Harry's bed listening intently to Harry recount the last three weeks.

"And tell me, why am I teaching you Occlumency?" he asked.

Harry paused. "After the attack on Mr. Weasley by Voldemort, you assigned Professor Snape, but we, ah - we didn't get along quite well. So after explaining the prophesy, you took over lessons until Saturday morning, and you told me to take a rest."

Dumbledore looked thoughtful, and then glanced warningly at the others. "Tell me Harry, about what has happened since you started Hogwarts."

Harry thought a minute, and then launched into the story of his time at Hogwarts, and the summers in between, he told everything. He remembered, and explained a few things that he heard about second had.

Dumbledore stood and gathered the other three to him. They left the room for Madam Pomfrey's office and Dumbledore returned with a drink for Harry, the other three following Dumbledore in.

"Please drink this; it should help with your headache." Harry finished the drink, and suddenly he felt like his head was filled with cotton, and yet blissfully empty at the same time. "Now then Harry, let's review a few things."

Harry nodded stupidly.

"Do you know what you just took?" Dumbledore asked.

"Veritas Serum. It'll make me tell the truth." Harry said in an oddly detached voice.

"Yes Harry. Very good, where did you learn about this potion?"

"Professor Snape threatened to use it on me once, and you used it on Barty Crouch Jr. who was using Polyjuice potion to pretend to be Alistair Moody, our Defense Against the Dark Arts professor in my fourth year."

"Who are your parents?"

"James and Lily Potter."

"Where do you live?"

"Number 4 Privet Drive, Surrey. With my aunt Petuna Dursley and my uncle Vernon Dursley, and my cousin Dudley Dursley."

"And why do you live there Harry?"

"You placed charms on the house making it so that Voldemort could not find me. The charms only work with blood relatives, and the Dursleys are the only remaining blood relatives I have."

"How many summers do you spend at the Weasley's?"

"None," Harry said sounding unbelievably sad. "You won't allow me to spend the summers there, even though Molly and Arthur have petitioned repeatedly as well as Ron, and Ginny."

"When was the first time you met Ron Weasley?"

"On the Hogwarts Express my first year, we spent the trip becoming friends, and have been inseparable since."

"Why is Ron your friend?" Dumbledore asked.

"At first I thought it was because I was famous, but later on, I realized he was just the kind of person I never had in my life. He and his family are the only ones other than Sirius Black to show me what real love is like."

"What about your parents Harry?"

"They were killed on Halloween night in 1981 by Voldemort."

"And why are you famous?"

"I'm the Boy-Who-Lived. When Voldemort attacked my parents my mother cast a charm protecting me with her very life. When he tried to cast Avada Kedavra on me it bounced back, though not as powerful, and almost killed him. He returned looking for the Philosopher's Stone in my first year, Ron, Hermione and I saved the stone. In my second year, I saved Ginny Weasley from the Chamber of Secrets and the diary of Tom Riddle, who was to grow up to become Voldemort. In my third year Sirius Black, my godfather, escaped from Azkaban to protect me from Peter Pettigrew, who betrayed my mother and father as their secret keeper. In my fourth year, Barty Crouch Jr. impersonated Alistair Moody, and entered me in the Tri-Wizard Tournament, Voldemort returned to power that year using my blood, his father's bones, and Pettigrew's flesh. In my fifth year we found out that the dreams I was having of Voldemort were two ways he was beginning to see through mine, Sirius was killed keeping the secret of the Prophecy from Voldemort, in the Department of Mysteries, Ron, Ginny, Neville, Hermione and Luna came with me to find the weapon. Only after we returned did you explain I was the weapon Voldemort wanted so badly."

"Sounds like these students are very good friends." Dumbledore said.

"Ron is like the brother I never had. Hermione is as good as my sister. Ginny." He trailed off.

"What about Ginny?" Ron asked

"Ron, that's between your sister and I." He said flatly, but with a trace of anger.

"What the bloody hell does that mean? You've been eyeing my sister?"

"Since her first year, when I spent part of the summer at your house I thought of her as an acquaintance. Last year in Grimmauld Place, I learned to respect her as her own person. The last two weeks we spent at your place I found what was causing my emptiness. It's Ginny. Just being around her has made me feel complete. But I haven't told her any of this, I don't want her hurt when I have to meet Voldemort."

"How much more of this are we going to put up with?" Ron asked disgustedly.

"Quite a bit Mr. Weasley, you see, this is not the Harry Potter you know." Harry felt a hand on his forehead. "Do you see that scar? Harry Potter has no scars I am aware of, and as I dined with Mr. Potter twice this summer, I can guarantee this scar was not there then.

"So, where did you come from Mr. Potter?" Dumbledore asked.

"The Room of Requirement." Harry answered.

The game of life is hard to play, I'm going to loose it anyway, The loosin' card I'll someday lay; So this is all I have to say...

That suicide is painless,
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please.

After another hour of discussion, Dumbledore gave Harry another potion. "It's the antidote to the Veritas Serum." He explained.

"I think that for now, this should be kept quiet, you three stay here, I'll return shortly."

Harry finished his potion and buried his head in his hands as the horrible feelings of stuffiness and lightheadedness cleared.

Hermione was the first to talk. "So, um Harry."

He lifted his eyes to her, "Yes?"

"I curious about this Room of Requirement. How does one get into it?"

Harry grinned "Well, it's simple really; one needs only to walk past the door three times thinking hard about what they need. You know that, after all the times we went there for the DA?"

Ron's face turned ashen "All what times?" he turned an accusatory look on Hermione.

Harry shook his head. "Look you prat, you were there too, and Ginny, Luna, Neville, Cho." he looked at their faces "Why don't you people remember any of this? Hermione it was your idea I taught the spells you found for me in our fourth year, and the Patrionus charm, yours is an otter." He looked at Ginny "Please tell me I'm not going crazy!"

Ginny looked into the depths of his eyes and sat on his bed; she pulled one of his hands into hers. "You play Quidditch I see." She was examining his hands carefully. "Do you trust me Harry?" Her eyes bore into his.

"Yes, of course."

"Relax Harry, think calm peaceful thoughts." Her eyes molten chocolate burned into him, it was easy to think peaceful thoughts with her so close. "Relax and let me see."

He felt himself adrift in the depth of her eyes, his life played out for him. She gasped and let go of his hand as if it burned her.

Ron rushed to her side, glaring at Harry. "If you hurt her Potter."

Before he could object, Ginny said "He can't Ron. It's not in him to hurt anyone."

"Ginny, I'll grant you are a great seer, but you expect me to believe that load he told Dumbledore?"

"No, Ron." Her voice hard. "But I expect you to believe me. I saw his life Ron, and believe me, you are killing him acting like that, and this is not the Harry Potter you know."

Ron's eyes narrowed. "Then who is it?"

"He's everything we had hoped for Mr. Weasley." Came Dumbledore's reply.

Harry's mind was reeling. "Professor Dumbledore, can you explain what is going on? I'm confused terribly."

"Certainly Harry. I suppose the place to begin would be in the beginning. Sixteen years ago to be precise." He took a seat and indicated the others should do so as well.

"You claim your mother and father, betrayed by Peter Pettigrew were killed Halloween night. Well, the fact remains Mr. Potter your parents are both alive and well. The only ones killed that night were the Longbottoms. We had thought that the Prophecy had been about Neville, but it turns out we were all wrong.

"Peter Pettigrew was severely wounded, and unable to be the secret keeper for your parents we have waged a long war against Voldemort, but he remains powerful. Many people have died in the past fifteen years, many of them people you have grown to care for deeply. You see Harry, Ron and Ginny are the last surviving Weasleys. The rest are dead, killed by Voldemort's Army.

"Now then, it would appear that there are other inconsistencies. In your mind, I am headmaster of Hogwarts, whereas I have not held that position for over thirteen years, I am currently the Minister of Magic.

"Severous Snape is not now, nor has he ever been a professor here, I don't allow for such kind of people in my ministry, and I surely wouldn't let them teach here.

"I could go on and on, however for the moment, I believe that we have reached an impasse. You are apparently thoroughly convinced that what you know is truth; I however know the same thing. The question is who is right? I am not arrogant enough to think I know all of the answers; however I must ask that you not speak of things to other students. "

He turned to the other three. "I'll need you to put aside your personal prejudices and work with Mr. Potter here. Perhaps this can work out to our advantage after all."

He stood. "I am aware that you are used to being in my confidence Harry, but for now understand I must consider all possibilities. I will be in touch."

Harry nodded. "Yes sir, I understand."

Dumbledore left then leaving the four alone. Harry looked at them eyeing him with a mixture of sympathy, suspicion and something Harry couldn't put his finger on. "I - I'm so sorry." He said, the words tumbling out.

Ron stared at him a moment longer. "So what's my favorite team then?"

Harry smiled a genuine warm smile. "The Cannons! You have your entire room done up in Cannon's orange, and have posters and a quilt." Harry realized what he had just said. "Oh Ron, I spent so many summers there, and when we went to the World Cup together, and your dad borrowed the tents." his voice trailed off.

Ron cocked his head, "How well did you know my dad?"

"He's the father I don't have Ron. He loves everything muggle." Harry's eyes unfocused and he recounted the story of Arthur getting stitches in St. Mungo's. "And your mum was furious she wouldn't let him out of her sight for three months." He finished the story for them.

Ron and Ginny were smiling. "Yeah, that's dad." Ron said softly. "You really do care about us then." His voice carried a hint of awe.

"You are all I have for a family." He admitted softly "I couldn't do anything to hurt any of you."

He looked at them and they saw the hurt. "What have I done to all of you?"

Ginny's eyes turned bright. "Oh Harry, it wasn't you. I mean it was, but not."

Hermione cleared her throat and spoke up. "Harry, your mother and father are Death Eaters."

Harry's mouth dropped open. "No. No. They died because they were fighting Voldemort! They would never!"

"Sirius Black and Remus Lupin were killed by the Potters a couple years after the Longbottoms died." Hermione said. "They were recruited by the Lestranges. You were secreted away at the age of four from your parents and hidden in safe houses all over Europe. You are known here not as 'The- Boy-Who-Lived' but as 'The-Last-Hope'. It's obvious the prophecy is about you, since the other was simply not strong enough to defeat Voldemort as you did.

"When you came to Hogwarts it was in great secrecy, and you were cocky, knowing you could never really get into trouble. You are a good Quidditch player, but play Chaser, not Seeker. Ginny is our Seeker.

"Your parents have sworn to return you to Voldemort on your graduation. So you have been given special lesions to defeat them. Oh Harry, you are not ready for this."

Harry sat back and thought for a moment. "Perhaps." A gleam shown in his eye. "Perhaps I am more ready for this than you could imagine."

Ron looked at him thoughtfully. "They think you are a spoiled brat that can hardly handle simple spells." The grin growing on his face.

"Precisely Ron, they have no idea. Just before I left Dumbledore he assured me I was almost as powerful as he was, and I was just growing stronger with every conflict."

Ginny looked at him thoughtfully. "So you've no idea then do you?"

Harry looked perplexed. "About what Ginny?"

"What you. Your other self has done?" She asked looking a bit apprehensive.

"Ah, no." he was looking worried. "Did he hurt you?" The anger welled up in him, his eyes flashing dangerously.

Ron laid a hand on Harry's shaking shoulder. "Yes he did Harry. I have to be honest, if Ginny hadn't told me you weren't him, I'd be all for chucking you out of the window." He looked Harry in the eyes. "You - he attempted to rape Ginny in the Quidditch changing rooms two years ago."

Harry's face turned ashen. "No. Oh god, I am so sorry Ginny. I."

She lay a hand on his arm, "No Harry, you couldn't. As much as a part of me recoils seeing you, I can feel your spirit and it's not the same as our Harry Potter. Seeing your life and I was convinced."

Harry hung his head in shame. "I would not blame you all if you left me now and never looked back."

Hermione smiled "You must terribly aggravate us in your world Harry Potter. No one should be so noble as to take another persons guilt on themselves."

Harry looked up, and a lopsided rueful smile flittered over his lips. "So you keep telling me."

The three of them got up and left the hospital wing leaving Harry with his thoughts. If I find a way back, I have to find a way to catch the other Potter. Precisely what is he doing in my world? Oh, god please let them understand what's happening.

He drifted off to sleep then, thinking of what horrors he had let loose on his world.

The next morning Harry woke in the hospital his head still bleary.

Dumbledore was sitting by his bedside. "Good morning Mr. Potter."

Harry sighed; no doubt the old fool is here to lecture me again. "Good morning Mr. Dumbledore."

"Yes, well." Dumbledore looked at him again; his hand reached for Harry's forehead and brushed away his bangs. His eyebrows knitted.

"Do you remember our last lesson, Harry?" Dumbledore asked softly.

Harry looked confused then, and carefully considered his answer. Dumbledore sat and watched him with that look he knew all too well. "You were trying to teach me the Patronus Charm." Harry finally said smugly. "But Headmistress McGonagall said she doubted I'd be able to master it until my seventh year."

"Did she?" He seemed surprised by this. Surely he remembers, they had argued for three hours over it.

"Well then." He stood after examining Harry's face for a minute longer. "You have visitors if you want them." He watched Harry again.

He opened the door, and had a few words with whoever was outside. Three figures entered the ward with Dumbledore behind them.

Harry's eyes narrowed. "What in the hell do you want Weasley?"

Ron looked confused and hurt. "We came to see how you were doing mate."

"Don't mate me, you pathetic excuse for a wizard. So have you and the Mudblood finally managed to figure out how to keep the Weasley name going then?"

Ginny took three steps forward and slapped Harry hard on the face, but just as she was about to turn, her eyes widened. Hastily she grabbed Harry's hand in hers, and concentrated. A minute later she backed away shaking.

Ginny shook herself, trying to rid herself of the images from this impostor's mind. Finally, pulling herself together she grasped the front of his robes and pulled him up to meet her eyes, her voice icy hard. "Where is Harry Potter you bastard?"

Dumbledore placed a hand on her shoulder. "Ms. Weasley, please let Harry go."

She let go of him and let him drop back on the bed. "That is not Harry Professor. I don't know who it is, but there is no way that is Harry."

Dumbledore smiled at her, "Oh but it is. Just not the Harry we all know."

Hermione worried at her lower lip. "So even though he looks like Harry, he's not. I read about this once." Her brows furrowed in concentration, and she finally looked up triumphant "The time turner! That's where I remember it from!"

Dumbledore smiled. "Yes, you are correct Ms. Granger. It is one of the dangers of using a Time Turner too far."

"So it is, but isn't Harry?" Ron asked confusion written all over his face.

Hermione looked worried. "What about our Harry?"

"Well, that remains to be seen Ms. Granger. I am sure that whatever event caused the Harry Potter's to switch places; it was our Harry's doing, as this one," he pointed to Harry "simply does not possess the power or talent to cause this to happen."

Dumbledore stood and turned. "I'll be in touch. For now, Mr. Potter, I am going to ask that you stay in this ward. I'll be taking certain, precautions, to ensure that you do, in fact stay here. The rest of you come with me please." They left a fuming Harry Potter in an isolated room.

As they walked, Dumbledore muttered to himself, and lead them to his office. "Now, we must put forth a plausible story as to why Mr. Potter can't have guests."

Ginny looked up smiling. "Dragon Pox."

Ron grimaced, "No one gets Dragon Pox anymore. You'd have to never have gotten the vacc." his voice faded.

Ginny continued grinning "That's right Ron, and you know full well Harry has never had the vaccine. It's far more dangerous the more mature you are, and we can claim he got it from the dragons in the Tri-Wizard Tournament."

Hermione scoffed. "That was over a year ago. No one would believe that."

Again Ginny's grin didn't fade. "Dragon Pox incubates for nineteen to twenty months if it's dormant, and it would have been when the dragons were here."

Dumbledore's smile was radiant. "Twenty points to Gryffindor Ms. Weasley."

"But I thought everyone had to have the vaccine?" Ron questioned. "To come to Hogwarts."

"Well, technically yes Mr. Weasley. Harry however has always been a, special, case."

Ron nodded knowingly. "Alright, Dragon Pox it is."

The sword of time will pierce our skins

It doesn't hurt when it begins

But as it works its way on in

The pain grows stronger...watch it grin, but...

That suicide is painless,
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please.

Harry woke in his room and began sorting out his day. He dreaded classes, Ron and Hermione were going to try and keep him from doing anything to tip off anyone else that he was not the Harry Potter the world had come to loathe.

He sighed sitting at his desk. He's Head Boy, and Dumbledore won't even make me Prefect. He buried his head in his hands.

A knock at the door and he straightened himself up. "Come in." The door opened, and Ginny slipped in. She wore a worried look on her face. "Yes Ginny? How can I help you?"

"I - I wanted a chance to talk to you." She looked him in the eyes directly. "Alone."

Harry smiled his lopsided smile at her. "Sure, any time."

"I saw you teaching, well, us spells in your last year. Do you suppose." she looked nervous.

"Do I suppose what?" his eyebrow raised questioningly.

"Do you suppose you could teach us, here?"

Harry thought for a moment and then grinned. "Of course! It would be a perfect first step. Round up Ron and Hermione, and meet me here after dinner. I've just the place." His eyes dancing with something Ginny couldn't place. He got up and moved to her side of the desk and hugged her.

At first she was tense, memories of what their Harry Potter had done, but this hug was warm, inviting. Intoxicating. She shook her head slightly. Suddenly Harry stiffened, and pulled back. "Oh. Oh, I am so sorry." Fear passed over his features. "I'm sorry Ginny, I - I should have known better." His voice took on a tone of self-berating misery.

She looked confused a minute and it all came into place. He's apologizing again for something he has no control over. She stood and turned away. "It's ok Harry, you aren't responsible for him." She closed the door behind her leaving Harry to his thoughts.

Harry's classes were unrealistically easy. He sat contemplating this at dinner. There was nothing they were learning that was even remotely challenging except DADA, which it turned out included physical combat as well as magical.

He went to the hall where the Room of Requirement was and concentrated on what he wanted. The door appeared, and he walked in to find his DA classroom intact. He grabbed some books and went to the Gryffindor common room to find Ginny, Ron and Hermione already waiting for him. He smiled, and waved them to follow him.

They left the room, and Harry handed them each a book Practical Defense Against the Dark Arts, Volume 1 by Albus Dumbledore. "This is the book we'll be working out of." He informed them as they looked over the volume.

"Minister Dumbledore is published?" Hermione asked sounding shocked.

"No," Harry countered. "But Headmaster Dumbledore is. These were the books I used last year, and the Room seems to have recalled the items I needed, including the books. He led them to the hall, and thought again of his DA room, and paced the hall, the door appeared, and Harry led them in.

The room was as he had left it, cushions and tables, even a note pinned to the wall with the DA members from last year. Harry smiled at it and wistfully thought of his DA students. Someone clearing their voice behind him brought him back to the here and now.

"Sorry," he said somewhat lamely. "I was just thinking. By now you should all know how to." he launched into what students from his Hogwarts should know, and where they were in comparison. Behind him he heard the chalk writing in his handwriting on the blackboard where he estimated them at.

"The only difference I see is a much heavier emphasis on DADA, and the physical combat part of DADA. Personally, I agree with it, I believe the wizards are leaving out a fairly large arsenal to use against, to be cliché, 'the bad guys', but then again, my world has not been at war for sixteen years.

"So I'm going to bring you up to speed on my world's magic, and I want you three to bring me up to speed on your physical combat training. God knows if I am here too much longer, I'm probably going to need it."

Hours slid by, leaving the four exhausted, and trudging back to Gryffindor. Harry thought back on the night berating himself for forgetting that these three weren't who he remembered, as they recoiled from him.

He followed Ron up the stairs, and was about to follow him in when Ron grinning turned to him and mouthed "Head Boy" and jerked his head up the stairs. Harry sighed and finished the climb to the Head Boy's room, and fell onto his bed tired.

"Shit!" He leapt out of the bed as though it were on fire. His wand out immediately "Lumos! Who the hell?"

His wand was pointing at a lumpy shape under the covers. Nervously he pulled them back, and found a nude Lavender Brown. His face went scarlet, and he quickly turned his back. "L - Lavender!" He hissed at her.

She sat up groggily, grabbed the covers and fell back on the bed pulling the covers over herself. Harry stood there confused, and then a thought came to him. He left his room and headed for the girls stairs, saying the password he had found written on a piece of parchment on his desk. He climbed the stairs to the sixth year girls dorm and knocked.

A sleepy Hermione answered. "What?"

"My what a ray of sunshine." Harry commented lightly to her as she glared at him. "Look, Hermione I need some help. In my room." He jerked his head in the direction of the Head Boy room.

She turned red with anger and pulled her hand back to hit him. "NO! not like that!" his face went crimson again. "Lavender is up there!"

Hermione looked at him as if he were daft. "Of course she is, you two have been going with each other since third year."

"No, we definitely aren't 'going together'." Harry said firmly. "She's in my bed!" and then barely above a whisper "She's nude Hermione! What am I supposed to do?"

Hermione smirked at him. "Well, if nothing else this surely lets me know who you are." She thought a moment. "Have you considered sleeping in your bed?"

"Hermione stop being a prat! I can't sleep in that bed she is in there! Wha - what if I accidentally touch something!" His face was ashen with horror. "What if I have, er, you know."

"No, Harry, I don't." She said sounding a bit put off.

His voice returned to the low whisper. "One of those dreams." His face burned crimson.

Hermione stifled a laugh. "She'll think it was her, and you'll be fine."

"No, she won't." Harry said. "I - I tend to talk in my sleep."

"Oh, well." She pursed her lips in thought. "Alright Harry, I'll come get Lavender out of your room."

They crept back to Harry's room; Hermione went in leaving Harry sitting in the hall. "So. What is going on here?" came a voice beside him.

"Ron, this is terrible." Harry lamented. "Lavender is in there, and Hermione is trying to get her to leave."

Ron looked at Harry oddly. "Why?"

"She's in my bed Ron!"

"Well, you have been." he started.

"No, no we haven't! I - I mean perhaps your Harry, but - but I never!" Harry looked panicked.

The door opened just then, and a tired and highly brassed off Lavender Brown came out and pulled Harry to his feet. "So tossing me out then?" She hit him hard on the cheek and stormed off.

Ron and Hermione came into his room and Hermione put together a cold compress from his cheek. They talked until Ron and Hermione fell asleep on his couch, Harry stumbled off to his bed, and fell asleep fully clothed on top of the blankets.

He had such a nice dream that night. In the morning his Ginny was gently calling his name, after having romped madly in his dreams all night long. Suddenly the red hair seemed shorter, and Ginny didn't sound like herself.

Harry scrambled back, and barely missed being hit by Ron, who was in turn being held back by Hermione. "You touch my sister Potter, and I'll kill you!" He was shouting, still trying to get to Harry.

"Ron! No! This isn't who you remember!" Hermione was begging Ron to listen.

The door opened and Ginny came in seeing them scrambling about. "What's going on here?" Her voice holding a lot of the same tone Mrs. Weasley had always used on the twins.

"That bloody git was having dreams about you!" Ron shouted.

"Of course he was you prat!" Ginny shouted back. "He's in love with Ginny Weasley."

Harry went scarlet. Great now everyone knew.

"However Ronald, have you forgotten that I am not the Ginny Weasley he is attracted to?"

Ron looked at Ginny oddly, and then at Harry. "I - oh."

Harry smiled "Sorry mate, but it's true. Your sister is on the mark exactly. It's taken me a while to figure it out, but I am sure of it."

Ron looked at Harry guardedly. "And you don't feel anything like that with my sister."

Harry sighed and looked down. "I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel the same way Ron, but" he said cutting off the triumphant look in Ron's eyes. "Your sister may look, talk and act a lot like the Ginny I know, she's not the Ginny I want to be with, and if I were to do anything like that it'd be a lie." He spread his hands. "I couldn't do that to her, or my Ginny."

Ginny grabbed Hermione's arm and steered her for the door. "Let's go get ready for breakfast."

Ron looked at Harry Potter for a moment. "You really don't act anything like the world-class prat does."

"So does that mean we can get ready for breakfast then?" Harry asked smiling.

Ron chuckled, "Yeah, I suppose it does. See you in a bit Potter."

Harry changed and met the other three in the Common Room, and they headed for the Great Hall. "I've a feeling," Harry said as the left the common room "that today will be good."

Ron snorted, "its Tuesday, Harry."

"And that means exactly what?"

"Double potions." Ron pulled a face as they descended the stairs.

A brave man once requested me

To answer questions that are key

Is it to be or not to be

And I replied 'oh why ask me?'

And suicide is painless

It brings on many changes

And I can take or leave it if I please

...and you can do the same thing if you please

Harry awoke two weeks later, his mind reeling. He had had the ghost of a dream, but his waking mind could do nothing but grasp at wispy threads. All of them meaningless to him. He sighed and got up; pulling a towel out of his trunk he removed his pajamas and wrapped the towel around his waist, and turned around.

He found himself staring into a pair of rich, warm, brown eyes. His heart stopped. "G - Ginny?"

She was staring at him slightly gape-mouthed, her fingers curling in on themselves, and her lush lips moving soundlessly. Suddenly she seemed to snap out of her trance. "H - Harry, you have to come." Her face burned scarlet. "You, you have to follow me." She turned and left the room.

Harry grabbed a robe and threw it on pulling his pajama bottoms on as he left the room, and ran full into Ginny who was waiting outside his door, breathing rather heavily.

She beckoned to him to follow, and ran down the stairs, Harry followed her to the common room. There Harry saw Dean Thomas with his wand trained on Ron.

"What the bloody hell is going on here?" Harry shouted.

Dean waved his wand at Ron. "It's none of your concern Potter; I'm just going to take care of this Mudblood loving family once and for all."

Dean never even saw it coming. Harry's wand was in his hand, and the words were forming on his lips before he could even think. 'EXPELLIARMUS! STUPIFY!" Dean Thomas's wand flew from his hand and slammed into the wall just as Dean himself hit the ground.

"Alright Ron?" Harry asked, his wand aiming at Thomas's inert form.

"Alright Harry." Ron answered slowly getting up his eyes wide, and staring at Harry in shock.

Ginny placed her hand on Harry's shoulder, her voice whispered into his ear. "You can't do those things Harry. You aren't this powerful."

Anger suddenly flared up in him, "NO ONE." He enunciated to the gathered crowed in the tower. "NO ONE lays a finger on Granger or the Weasleys unless you want to talk to me." Power surged off Harry, radiating from him. The collective students stared at him disbelief written across their faces.

He willed his temper down, and walked over to Ron. "You are sure you are ok mate?" His voice calm and friendly.

"Y - Yeah Harry." He chuckled humorlessly. "He only hit me a couple of times."

Harry turned to return to his room. A hand dropped on his shoulder. He turned to face Ginny, her eyes shining with unshed tears. "Thank you." He smiled weakly back at her.

After his shower, he returned to his room, and dressed for the day, pulling a clean robe from his wardrobe, he heard someone clear their throat. Harry jumped back, his wand pointing at Hermione.

He gave a small laugh, and put his wand away. "Sorry, you scared the daylights out of me."

"You really should lock your door then." She said matter-of-factly. "Anyway, I am here to personally thank you for what you did today. Though I am not sure it was the wisest choice to make." She said thoughtfully.

Harry sat down behind his desk. "I do a lot of things without thinking them through Hermione."

She grinned at him. "Well I, on the other hand have thought this through very well, and discussed it with Ron, and he agreed."

Harry looked at her in confusion. "What are you on about?"

Hermione stood up and removed her robes. Harry fell out of his chair legs flung upward.

Hermione gave a slight shout of surprise and ran to his side of the desk to help him back up; Harry on the other hand was trying to place as many objects between him and Hermione as possible. "What is it with you people?"

Hermione stopped trying to help him and looked at him in shock. "What are you on about Potter?"

"Look Hermione, I care for you deeply, er, well not you you, but you understand. But I don't, I can't. you and Ron."

Hermione laughed. "You are the most gullible." She indicated the sleeveless shirt and shorts she was wearing. "Ron and I thought you should learn physical combat from me, since I got the highest marks of all of us. You thought I was going to." She burst out in laughter.

Harry looked more relived than anything, slumped back against his ruined chair. He pulled himself up and waved his wand at the chair, and muttered a charm to repair it.

He and Hermione went about going over the basics. Word about Harry's rescue of Ron Weasley was all over the castle before Harry hit the showers. Just before lunch, Hermione and Harry were taking a break; Harry was recounting the story of Fluffy to Hermione who marveled at her other self, and the obvious friendship the three shared.

The door opened, and Headmistress McGonagall came in. "Potter, a word if you will. Alone." She said looking pointedly at Hermione.

Hermione got up from her spot on the floor and gathered her robes and left. McGonagall sat in Harry's desk chair, he took the guest chair. "Yes Professor?"

"I am to understand an altercation broke out in the common room this morning." She said unceremoniously. "I also am to understand you broke it up by disarming and stunning Mr. Thomas."

"Yes." Harry looked confused at her. "Wasn't I supposed to?"

"Potter, to be blunt with you, when you came to this school six years ago, I doubted you'd have the talent to graduate, now suddenly over the summer you have developed not only a tremendous talent, but you are casually throwing around spells that at the end of last term you could barely manage.

"To continue." She said looking him dead in the eye. "You seem to have developed a hero complex."

Harry twisted his hands in his lap.

"Minister Dumbledore then owled me this morning asking for me to excuse you for the afternoon, and to have you floo over to the Ministry of Magic." Her eyes cut into him. "Do you have anything you'd like to share with me at this time?"

Harry quickly considered his options, a small voice was screaming that he defend himself against Legilimens, and he wiped his mind clean. Sure enough on the fringes of his mind, he found the tell-tale signs of someone trying to get in. His eyes narrowed slightly. "No Professor, nothing I can think of."

He felt the fingers probe for a minute, and then felt them withdraw. "Fine. Be in my office in thirty minutes." She stood and left, Harry watched her tuck her wand back into her pocket.

Not so crafty then Professor. He allowed himself to think. He pulled on a plain black set of robes, and grabbed a traveling cloak. He also pulled out a small bag of gold, and double checked his wand. He sat for a minute and immersed himself in the exercises Dumbledore had taught him. Emptying his mind, and preparing for the trip.

He entered McGonagall's office thirty minutes later, and less then four minutes later was standing in Dumbledore's office brushing off his cloak.

He froze mid-way when he saw who else was in the room. James and Lily Potter were seated in front of Dumbledore's desk; James had his wand in his hand. "Very good Albus, Lily and I thank you for returning our son to us."

"James, he's not done with his school." Dumbledore warned. "What good is a partially trained wizard to you?"

"Partially trained?" Lilly scoffed. "That's not what we heard." She turned to Harry, he saw her fully for the first time.

When he looked at them, they had faces similar to the people in his photos, but suddenly he saw a cruelty there that had never been in the photos. "Come here Harry." His mother said silkily. He took a hesitant step forward. "It's ok sweetie." She smiled, and instantly Harry felt the fingers intruding in his mind.

He stopped and stared at them both. His body screamed warnings that this was all horribly, horribly wrong.

"Come here Harry." His father said, Harry was torn, they looked like them.

"Why do you have your wand trained on Minister Dumbledore?" Harry asked.

"None of your concern." His father bit out sharply. "Come here!"

"No." He drew his wand and shouted 'EXPELLIARMUS! STUPIFY! STUPIFY!" His mother and father slumped in their chairs, James' wand rolled to a stop at his feet.

"Profe - Minister, we have to get you out of here. Mobilus Corpsus." Dumbledore rose from behind his desk jerkily, and followed Harry. He opened the doors and found the secretaries office blown apart. Harry reconsidered, and returned to the Minister's office. He grabbed the floo powder, and threw a bit in the fireplace, stuffing in Dumbledore, and taking the remainder of the powder with him. Please let this work. "The Burrow."

Harry emerged from a broken down fireplace with the Professor into what had once been the Weasley's living room. A tree, obviously several years old with rotting presents underneath had once been brightly wrapped. A few pictures remained on the walls, and Harry's eyes were drug to the clock tears swimming in his eyes as he saw only two hands labeled 'Ginny' and 'Ron' pointing at 'In School'.

He pushed himself up and shook himself. Strong Potter, come on, they are fine in your world. You need to make your way back so they can't find you.

He grinned. Of course.

He started the fire, and threw in the powder, stuffing in Dumbledore, and following him in. "Godric's Hollow!" and vanished.

He came to light in a warm cottage. The rooms were bare, and had been for quite some time. Harry made his way through the house after making Dumbledore as comfortable as possible.

He looked outside and found a couple of stones, and brought them in transfiguring them into a pair of couches. He laid Dumbledore on one under Harry's cloak. Harry examined the rest of the small house. What the hell had happened so bloody long ago?"

"Who in the hell are you?" came a voice that filled him with ice.

Harry spun around and saw the last person he ever thought he'd see. Sirius Black's ghost hovered in the archway. "S.Sirius." Harry fell to his knees. "Don't be a dream; oh please don't be a dream."

Sirius looked confused. "Do I know you?"

"No, not here, but, elsewhere. You know me. I'm your godson, and I need you so much Sirius."

Sirius followed Harry out of the kitchen and listened as Harry recounted all he knew about what was going on.

"So, you have no idea then what happened?" Black leaned back as if tipping a chair on its back two legs his hands laced behind his head. "Let me think on this a bit Harry." He faded out leaving Harry with the still unconscious Dumbledore.

Harry woke the next morning to see Dumbledore was up and about. He went to find him, and found a table, chairs and the kitchen had plates, and breakfast mostly finished.

"Good morning Mr. Potter." Dumbledore said coming in from outside. "Excellent choice for a hideout, might I add. Quite possibly the last place that anyone would look for you. Excepting your parent's house, but then again you wouldn't know how to get there, would you?"

"No sir."

"I had a most excellent conversation with the spirit of Sirius Black. It would seem that he has decided you couldn't possibly be who you claim you are, but offers this advisement none the less: Trust in the Marauders. Whatever that means." He returned to cooking.

Harry thought hard and a smile overcame him. "We must return to Hogwarts soon. I know exactly what he is talking about."

"After breakfast my boy." Dumbledore sat the food down.

"Do I want to know?" Harry said pointing at the eggs, bacon and toast.

Dumbledore smiled. "Probably not Mr. Potter, however nothing that would harm you even untransfigured."

They ate in silence, and then prepared to leave the house. Harry started the fire, and handed the floo powder to Dumbledore. "Excellent escape route Harry, and quick thinking in taking the remainder of the powder from my office." He threw in some powder. "Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry." Harry followed him a moment later.

As the sun fully rose two figures appeared slowly. "This is going to begin a chain of events that I cannot for see an end to."

"Mooney, stop talking like a prat. If that is indeed Harry, he's still too early. This is not taking place at all like the second prophesy claims." Sirius said folding his arms across his chest. "Besides where would Harry get that bloody scar from? It really does nothing for him. Now a good scar on the cheek, that is good to attract the ladies."

"Have you forgotten that we are dead Padfoot?" Lupin raised his eyebrows. "What are we to do, go to Hogwarts and chase the Grey Lady?"

Sirius's eyes got wide. "Now you are thinking Mooney, now how can we get there?"

"We can't. I find it terrible to believe I am trapped in this house with you until this damned spell is broken."

Sirius huffed and his form shimmered and melted into that of a large dog who curled up on the floor.

"Oh, how very adult of you Black." Lupin faded away glaring at the ghost dog on the floor.

The world stopped spinning and Harry lifted himself to unsteady feet. He looked around quickly, seeing nothing that was even vaguely familiar. He quickly checked his pockets and found his wand and the bag of floo powder still intact.

He opened the door to the house and walked into the streets of Little Winging still shaking off the effects of the disorientation. Where to go now? He mused to himself.

Finally Harry picked a random direction and headed off. An hour later a head appeared in Mrs. Figg's fireplace as she came home from the store. "Arabella! Thank goodness you are alright!" Dumbledore said. "May I come through?"

"Certainly Albus!" She said, and then noticed the tracks on the floor.

Dumbledore strode into her living room, and she pointed to the footprints. "Someone's here Albus!"

He bent to examine the tracks and sighed. "It's as I feared. He's here."

"HE? He who Albus?" She began to look nervous.

"Harry Potter." Dumbledore said distractedly and followed the prints to her door. "And he's left your house." He seemed to contemplate this a minute and then turned his attention back to the fretting woman. "It will be ok Arabella. Harry's had an, accident, and he isn't thinking clearly."

He summoned up a pot of tea. "Have a spot of tea then, and I'll go look for Harry." He swept from the room, leaving Arabella alone again.

Harry felt the cold unlike ever before. "What are we doing out here anyway?" He summoned one of Hermione's blue balls of fire. Warming his hands and stamping his feet.

The two Aurors merely looked at him in an irritated fashion. "We are waiting."

Harry sighed in exasperation, reinforcing the warming charm. "Nice to be stuck with you too." He muttered under his breath, and settled in for more waiting.

He reached into his rucksack and pulled out a quill, ink and parchment. He hesitated, but when his hand started it was a full thirty minutes and four pieces of parchment later that he set the quill down, and folded the parchment and addressed it. He pulled out a tube and placed the parchment in the tube, and sealed it with the spell Dumbledore had given him. He then walked over to the owls, and gave the small tube to the owl. "Take this to Hermione Granger." The owl took the tube and sped off.

The two Aurors continued to ignore Harry, so he settled himself in and began the exercises to clear his mind. While meditating, Harry felt his scar begin to prickle. "He's coming." He intoned, barely a whisper.

One of the Aurors turned. "What the bloody hell are you talking about?"

"Tom Riddle is coming. He knows we are here." Harry said softly, and stood.

He drew his wand and summoned a shield. "Voldemort is coming and if you two have half a brain between you, you'll stay out of my way." His voice had become flat, almost neutral.

"You two are responsible for dealing with the Potters, I'll handle Voldemort." His green eyes narrowed, and he crouched behind the softly glowing amber shield.

Suddenly there were three distinct pops and Harry saw his mother and father flanking the man he had known all along he'd have to kill. "Voldemort is mine." He repeated.

"RIDDLE!" Harry suddenly shouted. "Come face me you coward!" He stood and braced for the impact of the curses. They came fired from his parents and Voldemort. Each one ringing against the shield, hammering at it, though Harry kept pushing more power into it to maintain the integrity of the shield.

"Any time now would be good!" he growled to the Aurors. They seemed to snap out of it and began firing hexes and curses back at the Potters.

The hammering continued, though now only coming from Riddle. Harry focused and concentrated on the Weasleys, Ginny, Hermione, and Sirius, letting the feelings flow into him he needed to complete the spell Dumbledore had given him.

They had practiced for a month hiding in Hogwarts, finally Harry had mastered it. "Expetro Patronus Veris Mallificanta!" The figure of Voldemort was bathed in a soft golden light.

"Carpiea Veris Mallificanta!" The soft golden light seemed to be infusing itself into Voldemort's being, and he began to spasm.

"Pertificus Totalus Veris Mallificanta!" He completed the spell, and Voldemort went rigid, the last of the golden light now locked inside.

Harry sat back, his shield faded, and shortly so did the rest of the world.

Harry Potter Dead

The Ministry of Magic has positively identified the body as that of Harry James Potter, 16.

Harry Potter is the well known son of James Potter and Lily Potter, who were also slain by You-Know-Who.

The Wizard world grieves the loss of Mr. Potter, our last hope at defeating You-Know-Who.

Albus Dumbledore released this statement. "I have not yet seen the body, and cannot verify that this was in fact Mr. Potter." One would have to wonder what Mr. Potter was doing outside of school during these dangerous times. Dumbledore had no comment on that.

Hermione held the newspaper in trembling hands. Tears were welling up in her eyes. Ginny and Ron sat there ashen faced.

An owl appeared shortly after, bearing a small silver tube, he dropped it on Hermione's plate.

She reached for the tube, and it dissolved, leaving behind a folded stack of parchment.

She took the first one, and handed it to Ron, took hers, and handed the largest pile to Ginny.

Hermione,

I'm not sure if this will get to you, but since you are the smartest witch I know, I am hoping you, well. I'll explain this all later, but I hope you can get the letters where they belong.

I have completely lost track of time, and cannot remember what is right and wrong anymore. All I can say is that once I am done here, everything will be so much easier when I get back.

We've tracked Riddle down, he isn't aware I can feel him. Well, here he isn't anyway. This is so difficult to say without sounding like I'm mad.

Oh, if anything bad happens to that git that looks like me, good. In fact kick him a few extra times for me, and then make sure he suffers a long time for what he did to Ginny.

I can come back, I know I can and so long as that brain-dead imitation me doesn't know anything about the Room of Requirement, I have complete control over this.

You are right, as always. I do have this "saving other people thing". I can't leave here until I finish off Voldemort. These people have no way to defend themselves from him, as you can tell my counterpart is hardly a match for a first year, let alone Riddle. My advantage is this: If I destroy Riddle here, according to Dumbledore I will gain a portion of his power, or something like that. The spell we are using should work; I've been practicing it for a month. What it does is it sets up a conduit between me and him, and when he finally dies, I will receive a portion of his energy.

Disgusting as it sounds, I'll enhance my own protection against him. Voldemort won't even know what hit him.

Your Friend Harry James Potter

P.S. Find a big stick and beat that ass that looks like me. Take turns until the stick breaks.

Hermione read the letter over and over again. Mixed emotions running through her mind, chasing themselves until she was exhausted. "I think I'll have a bit of a lie in." She said, and wandered up to the Gryffindor tower, and her bed.

Ron read through his letter several times before standing wordlessly and returning to the tower himself.

Ginny sat in the great hall, and read the missive Harry wrote to her, tears flowing freely down her face. She read the last paragraph over and over again.

Ginny, I know it seems to you I have been distant and almost cold to you. This is not the truth. Of all the letters this one was the hardest to write, because I have so much to lose. I care deeply for you. There! I wrote it, now I just need to have the sheer courage to make sure I send it. Because I am honestly scared senseless. I dream every night about you. It's what's keeping me sane, knowing I'll come back and find you alive and well. I miss everything about you.

With All My Love Harry James Potter (The Boy-Who-Loves-Ginny)

She walked up to the tower following in the footsteps of her brother and Hermione. Numbly she made it to her bed, and collapsed.

Voldemort Defeated

Harry James Potter, the last hope for defeating Tom Marvelo Riddle came through last night in a raid on Voldemort's hideout.

Details are sketchy, but Auror Robert Young had this to say. "It was the most intricate spell I had ever seen performed. Young Mr. Potter truly is a powerful Wizard in his own right, and by the time he finished Hogwarts will be a great Wizard."

Also killed last night were James and Lily Potter, parents to Harry, and the most vocal supporters of Voldemort since the Lestranges.

Harry rumpled the paper, and tossed it aside. It was mid afternoon, and he still felt bone tired, but yet his blood was singing with power, raw, unbridled power. It was making him fidget in the hospital wing.

"Mr. Potter please!" the nurse said in frustration. Making him lay down.

"I don't want to be here! I am fine!" He groused. "I just want to go." He huffed finally.

Ron and Hermione came to see him then bringing a packed he had asked for from his trunk. Harry quietly slipped the cloak on and vanished from sight. Ron called out "Ok Harry, we'll just be leaving now!" and the three slipped out of the Hospital Wing.

"She's mental." Harry was saying as they clattered down the stairs in reference to the nurse.

The three made their way to Harry's room, and were shortly joined by Ginny.

"Well, I think it's about time I went home, and dealt with my Voldemort." Harry said weakly, throwing a few items into the rucksack.

He looked up at his three friends. "I'll really miss you mate." Ron said extending his hand. "You are a true hero here you know."

Hermione pulled him into a hug. "You'll be missed greatly Harry Potter." She turned away to hide the tears Harry knew were falling.

Ron walked Hermione out of Harry's room, and Ginny came up to him. "Off to save your lady fair from the bad guy again Harry?"

He stopped pushing items into his bag, and turned to look at her. Her face was passive, serene. "Yeah, looks like." He said softly. "Only my lady fair isn't mine." Ha sighed.

"You don't have to be alone Harry. I'll not make pretenses, I'd take you in a heartbeat, but I know, as do you, that I'd be a substitute, you'd never really love me, and you'd always love her." The serene façade cracked, and Harry saw the sadness there. "If she's half the person you claim she is, she'll fall at your feet the moment you return." A sad smile touched her lips.

She embraced him then, her lips found his and she kissed him softly, and broke the embrace and turned. Her hands rested on the knob, and with a shaky voice "If she refuses you Harry Potter, know that I will be waiting for you." She opened the door and left.

With an ache he couldn't explain, Harry lifted his rucksack, and headed out of the Tower. He found his way to the Room of Requirement unspotted, and entered it, the fireplace; chair and milk were waiting for him. He sat in the chair, and contemplated the fire a minute, and reached for the glass. He drank it down, and slowly fell into a slumber.

He woke up, stretched, and grabbed his rucksack, opening the door, and was greeted by a shriek, and a body falling at his feet. Harry drew out his wand and looked around the deserted hallway, seeing no one he looked down and saw the prone form of Ginny Weasley. He lifted her into his arms and hurried off to Gryffindor Tower.

He entered the tower and all the noises he had heard on opening the door stopped. "What?" He asked irritably. "She saw me and passed out!"

Then something happened that Harry wasn't expecting. Mass chaos broke out a panic at his presence. Students fled in all directions screaming and shouting warnings and occasionally poorly aimed jinxes. "HEY! Watch what you are doing! You could hurt Ginny you bloody fools!"

The doorway opened behind Harry and he heard McGonagall. "What is goin- Oh my lord! Harry Potter!"

Harry turned to face her, "Professor what is going on?"

"I don't know Mr. Potter, truly I don't." She sat down in one of the chairs; Harry placed Ginny on a couch and summoned a blanket to place over her.

"I, ah, I opened a door and Ginny ran into me, and shrieked and passed out!" he sounded panicky. He looked imploringly at his head of house. "Professor, what is going on?"

"Perhaps we should go see Dumbledore." She said nervously. "Yes, that's what we should do. Come along Potter, and bring Ms. Weasley."

Harry carried her to the Headmaster's office, and placed her in a chair. Dumbledore and McGonagall had a hurried whispered conversation during which Ginny stirred.

Harry whispered to her. "Come on Ginny, its ok. It's me Harry, and I need to talk to you, wake up please?"

Her eyelids fluttered open while he was holding her hand. "H - Harry? Is it really you?"

He looked up at her and she felt herself falling into the depths of his eyes again. There was no doubt who this young man was to her. She placed a hand on his forehead and brushed the fringe back to reveal the scar there. Seeing it she brushed her fingertips over it and smiled, and enveloped Harry in a hug not unlike the one the other Ginny had given him.

"Did you get my letter then?" He asked.

She just nodded. He felt tears hitting his shoulder.

"Do you want to talk about it?" He was becoming nervous.

She shook her head.

Harry's heart dropped. "I - I understand." His voice cracked.

She pulled back and kissed him leaving him confused and dazed.

Suddenly his face darkened. "He didn't touch you did he?"

She looked confused and then chuckled, "Ah, no Harry. I'm afraid I scared the daylights out of him."

Harry looked to Dumbledore. "Why is everyone afraid of me lately? What did that monster do?"

Dumbledore smiled and handed Harry a newspaper. "He died."

Harry read his obituary with a mixture of dread and elation. "Are you sure Professor?"

"Yes Harry, there is no doubt it was him. Voldemort wanted it obvious who he killed. The ministry played into his hands quite well. You see in order to keep up the façade of you being here, we ah, added something to him."

"The scar, I knew he didn't have one."

"Yes, well, he also has none of your considerable talents, though I daresay he was a hellion with his bare hands."

"Yeah, their DADA classes include practical hand to hand combat. They are a world that had been at war for eighteen years. Though that has come to an end."

Dumbledore felt into Harry's mind, and was shocked by the speed and power of his defense. "No. No one can do that anymore." His voice was flat but rippling with power.

"I see you kept up on your studies." Dumbledore looked at him proudly. "So you met their Voldemort in combat?"

Harry nodded. "And my parents."

McGonagall gasped, Ginny's arms held him tighter. "In the other place, they were Voldemort's supporters after they met with the Lestranges. I - it was not an easy task Professor."

He wrapped his arms around Ginny and held her close. "I suppose you want to hear about this then?" Dumbledore nodded eager to learn about this other place. Harry dug in his rucksack and withdrew two books. A History of the 20th Century, and Modern Wizards and Witches of Power. "Everything you want to know is in there."

He reached out and summoned a pot of tea, four cups and some biscuits, taking a cup and some biscuits offered it to Ginny who accepted, and he took his own. "I'll however, answer any question you might have."

"I think you should go off and rest Mr. Potter and Ms. Weasley; I'll have Professor McGonagall place you both in the appropriate Head of House room until we sort this all out."

Harry entered a duplicate room to what he'd been staying in for the past few months, and laid on the bed, allowing his muscles to relax, emptying his mind, and fell into a deep sleep.

Several hours later he woke to the sound of someone trying to open his door that he had locked. He stood up, and dispelled the lock he'd placed on the door and in burst Ron and Hermione. Harry grinned and Hermione gave a small shriek and drew him into a tight embrace. She released him and Ron looked him over and drew him into a brotherly hug. When he released Harry, he hit him square on the jaw.

"That is for scaring us half to death!" Ron shouted at him.

Harry sat on the floor rubbing his jaw. "Thanks for caring so much you prat."

Hermione clucked at Ron and looked Harry over. "You look ok, but perhaps you should go see Madam Pomfrey." Harry's look of panic made her backpedal. "Or not."

Harry took off his robes and lay on the couch, then summoned an icepack for his jaw. Ron was looking at his shirt. "What is GHDC?"

"Gryffindor House Dueling Champion." Harry said.

"Whoa, you mean you are the dueling champion?" Ron's eyes got big.

Harry grinned wickedly. "No Ron, your sister is. I stole this from her."

Ron's mouth dropped open. "You didn't!"

Harry chuckled. "No Ron, I didn't. She gave it to me as a gift, after I returned to Hogwarts from defeating Voldemort. She said if that didn't make me the dueling champion she didn't know what did." He said the last with a hint of sadness.

"You cared for her that much Harry?" Ron's voice was subdued.

"No Ron, I'm sad for her, because somewhere along the way she fell in love with someone who'd never love her back."

The door opened and Ginny walked in and unceremoniously plopped herself down on Harry eliciting a smile on his behalf.

"Who were you talking about then?" she asked sleepily.

"Your counterpart Ginny." Harry answered. "She's going to wait for me to return."

Her face grew shocked. "You - you are going to leave again?"

Harry smiled. "No, I belong here, and I'll stay here. I'm just sad for her. Because her Harry was a complete git, and he's never coming back."

"And Voldemort?" Ginny asked.

"Yes, there is him still." Harry answered. "But I'll worry about him later. Much later." He snuggled into Ginny's arms and he fell asleep.