Title: Changing the Present Rating: PG Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended. Summary: Harry has fallen into darkness and there is only one person who can save him. And it's not exactly whom you would expect... Note: Part of the Harry Potter and Severus Snape General Fest. Answers challenge number eighteen.

Changing the Present by Entilzah

"I have to go back, Albus."

A nod. "Yes."

A small object is passed over. The first one takes it from the second. "Only 25 years?"

Another nod. "Yes. Use them wisely. You know when the change started, let it all happen until then."

The first one nods as well. "All right then. I'll hope never to see you again, Albus. For if I do, then it means that I have failed."

A wry smile and, "Good luck, Julius."

Julius Potter takes the small object that he had been handed a few moments earlier and turns it, twenty-five times. It is a time turner, and he is going back in time to change Harry Potter's present.


Summer of 1990:

Julius almost stumbled when he arrived on the grounds of Hogwarts in 1990. As he looked around, the memories of Hogwarts as it once was came rushing back to him, and he was overcome with a bittersweet emotion. Hopefully, this time he would be able to set things right.

Julius set off in the direction of the main doors. All the while he found himself smiling over the memories that came back to him as he walked through the grounds. A tree that he had studied under; the lake where he had watched Harry in the Triwizard Tournament.

Too soon, he arrived at the main doors. He reverently pushed them open; it had been far too long since he had seen Hogwarts whole. Once inside, he walked quickly to the Headmaster's office, pleased that he could still so easily find the way. At the gargoyle guarding the entrance, Julius began to guess at passwords. He grinned inwardly at that though, Albus still had a passion for various candies—both Muggle and wizarding.

"Chocolate Frogs," came an amused voice from behind him.

Julius turned at the sound, annoyed that he hadn't heard the approaching footsteps. "Albus!" he said.

Julius was quite pleased to see the puzzled expression on Albus' face, as he almost never had the opportunity to truly surprise the Headmaster so. "I beg your pardon, but, who are you?" Albus asked politely as the puzzled look slowly faded away.

Julius smiled lightly. "My name is Julius Potter. I have come from the future in order to save it and Harry Potter," he explained.

"Indeed," replied Albus with a thoughtful look, "well then, do come up, and we'll discuss this further."

Julius followed Albus up the stairs into Albus' office. Inside, Albus had Julius sit down as he offered the Slytherin a lemon drop. Sadness crossed over Julius' face as he, for once, accepted. Then Albus crossed back to behind his desk and sat down. He conjured a tea set and said, "Well, my boy, tell me more about why you are here."

Four hours later found Julius moving into his quarters in the dungeons. He was to take up the post of Potions professor as one Severus Snape. He found it odd that he would be teaching his own younger self starting in the fall, but he hoped that it would all be for the best.

Meanwhile, Albus sat in his office stroking Fawkes. He had a thoughtful, yet sad, look on his face as he considered what he had just learned from Julius. It seemed that the coming years would be very trying for young Harry Potter, but he, too, hoped that it would all be for the best.


In the fall, Julius watched as his younger self was sorted into Slytherin.

One year later, Julius watched as Harry was sorted into Gryffindor and saved the school from Voldemort and Quirrell.

The year after that, Julius watched as Harry saved the school again from the Basilisk in the Chamber while he brewed restorative potions from Sprout's mandrakes.

In Harry's third year, he did his part and went to the Shrieking Shack.

In Harry's fourth year, he tried to get Harry out of the Triwizard Tournament in a desperate, though futile, attempt to change time.

In Harry's fifth year, as much as he hated it, he cancelled Harry's occlumency lessons.

In Harry's sixth year, Julius watched as Harry began his descent into darkness, and he knew that it was time to act.

In the summer after Harry's sixth year, Julius went to Number Four Privet Drive and collected Harry and brought him to an isolated cottage where he was to try to save the wizarding world's savior from himself.


Julius knocked on the Dursleys' door and waited. After a few moments (during which he could hear some indistinct shouts and some scuffling), the door opened to reveal a boy who more resembled a beached whale than an actual boy. He frowned.

"Who are you?" asked the boy rudely.

Julius gave him the glare usually reserved for the likes of Neville Longbottom and others of his ilk. "My name is Severus Snape. I wish to see your cousin, Harry Potter," he replied in a rather cold tone of voice.

Dudley's eyes widened and he shouted, "Dad!"

Within moments, Vernon Dursley appeared at the door, his face looking quite red. "What's the meaning of this? Dudley?" he asked sharply.

"He's one of those freaks, come to collect Potter, he says!" replied Dudley, just as rudely as before.

Vernon's eyes narrowed and he gave Julius a disgusted look. "Come to take him away for the rest of the summer, have you?" he asked.

Julius nodded once, sharply. "Yes," he said shortly.

"Good," Vernon turned and called up the stairs, "Boy! Get down here, boy!"

"Coming, Uncle Vernon!" Julius heard Harry shout. He had to confess to surprise when Harry finally appeared before them. "Yes, Uncle Vernon, what is it?" Harry asked tiredly.

"Someone to see you, boy."

That was when Harry seemed to notice Julius for the first time. His eyes widened with shock and he stuttered, "Pr-professor Snape! What, that is, why are you here, sir?"

"I'm here to take you away," he replied easily.


Some odd hours later, Julius led Harry into the cottage that Albus had arranged for the two of them. He ignored the silent teenager following him and walked up the stairs to the second floor and opened a door. That specific door happened to lead to the room that was to be Harry's. "This room is yours," he said neutrally as he stepped back to allow Harry to enter it first.

The room was an odd blend of Slytherin and Gryffindor colors. The bed was green with a silvery canopy. The carpeting a deep crimson. Gold, too, was scattered around the room. Julius found the color scheme amusing, though he had to admit that it was a good fit for the Slytherin-in-Gryffindor colors that stood in front of him.

Julius decided to let Harry be for a while. "Come down for tea. There is much we have to discuss," he said and withdrew from the room.

Two hours later, Julius was very pleased to see Harry come down for tea. He studied his student as he poured the tea. Harry looked quite exhausted, though whether it was from the fighting, the visions, or Merlin only knew what else, Julius couldn't tell. He sighed. Harry looked up at him.

Moments went by in silence. The only sound was that of the tea cups being lifted from their saucers and being put back. Finally, Julius spoke. "Harry," he said softly, "I have something very important to tell you, but it will be very difficult for you to believe."

Harry simply looked at him.

Julius went on. "I know that you are familiar with time turners, yes?" Harry nodded. Julius continued, "Time turners come in different varieties. Some are meant for mere minutes, others for hours, others for days, and yet still others are meant for years," Julius paused and pulled out the small hourglass he had taken to wearing around his neck. "This one is meant for years. The most anyone can go back in time is twenty-five years. That's what I did. Eighteen years from now, Albus will give me this time turner, and I will go back in time to the year before you started at Hogwarts." Julius paused and waited.

"Why?" asked Harry finally.

Julius sighed again. Then he picked up his wand and waved it over himself.

Harry gasped as he watched Julius hair lighten to a dark brown instead of black, it also shortened a bit, and now it looked rather unruly. His eyes turned green, not quite like Harry's though. Julius reached into the pocket of his robes and pulled out a pair of glasses. When he finished, Harry thought that Julius now looked much like he rather thought that he would look like in the future.

"Who are you?" Harry asked, "Really?"

Another sigh from Julius. "My name," he said slowly, "my real name is Julius Alexander Potter."

"Potter?" gasped Harry, and his face, which had remained emotionless for so long, showed his shock.

"Yes," confirmed Julius, "Potter."

"But... how?"

"It's really quite simple," explained the elder wizard, "a year before you were born, I was born to your... to our... parents."

"Our parents?" Harry echoed.

"Our parents," repeated Julius.

"So then... you're my brother. But... what about the present day you?" asked Harry.

"He--I--was taken away and raised by a wizarding family in Australia. When I was accepted into Hogwarts, my family moved to, or rather, back to Britain. Right now, I, well, I don't know where I am. In Britain, that's certain, but I don't know what. This is the moment in time I came back to change, and I think it's already changed because I'm finding sudden gaps in my memory," Julius explained.

"I don't understand," Harry replied.

Julius gave him a sad smile. "When I came entered Hogwarts, I did not enter as Julius Potter. I entered as Philip Horn. I was sorted into Slytherin, despite the fact that both of our parents were in Gryffindor. I never drew attention to myself; I never followed young Mr Malfoy's crowd. In fact, I never drew the attention of those outside my house. Only Dumbledore knew that you and I are brothers, and that only because I told him when I started teaching.

"At any rate, I followed you as you finished your years at Hogwarts. You did eventually defeat Voldemort, but it changed you, though not as much as did the events of your fourth and fifth years. They happened in my memory just as they happened in yours.

"In my world, you are very unhappy. You are paying for the decisions made by those around you. Albus and I decided that I had to come back and change things. If I didn't... well, I don't want to, can't, say." Julius finished his explanation and looked to Harry.

Harry seemed to be lost in his thoughts, finally he said, "I thought you went to school with my, with our, parents. I thought you hated my father, me..."

Julius sighed. "This is one of the changes we made," he said, "Severus Snape is a real person. He did go to school with our parents. He is a potions master. He did come to Hogwarts to teach. I simply took his place. When he came to take the post, Albus told him that he had found someone better suited for the job. Albus told Snape that he had another place for him, something of that nature. I'm not certain of where he ended up. I took Snape's place. I allowed the events to happen, just as I remembered. The only thing that I did differently was try to stop you from entering that blasted tournament. Unfortunately, Albus saw what I was trying to do, and he didn't allow it. He said afterwards that he had to allow it all to happen. I didn't, and still don't, see what the point is when we're changing it now, anyway."

Harry nodded slowly. "And the whole bit with Sirius? Why not change things then?" he asked angrily.

Julius shook his head. "Before I left, Albus told me to let everything happen up to a point. This point. The bit with the Tournament was me giving into temptation. Afterwards, Albus pulled me aside and said that there must have been a reason his future self told me to allow everything to happen as it did up to a certain point. He said that I had to follow that," Julius shrugged, "Who knows? Albus always did see things differently from everyone else. Perhaps he knew something that I didn't, still don't."

Another slow nod from Harry. "I think I understand, but I need time. Time to consider all of this. Time to cope. May I go back to my room now?"

Julius nodded in response, a sad smile on his lips. "Of course, Harry... Tell me, would you like me to make arrangements for you to meet er... me?"

"Maybe, ask me again tomorrow," came Harry's reply as he walked back up the stairs and to his room.

Julius sighed and sat back in his chair. He'd done it, or at least, he'd started it. The changes. In the timeline that he knew, Harry had slipped into the darkness during his sixth year. As time had gone by, the bright Gryffindor that they had all known had been replaced by a cold Slytherin, and the trouble didn't come from Harry embracing his Slytherin side, it came from the fact that he went from a bright Gryffindor to a cold Slytherin. At the beginning of his seventh year, Harry had indeed been resorted into Slytherin where he'd fallen in with Malfoy.

While in times past, Harry might have been the one to change Malfoy, this time, it was Malfoy who changed Harry. Oh yes, Harry had defeated Voldemort, but he had ended up replacing Voldemort. And while Harry's rule wasn't as extreme as that of Voldemort's, it was still a terrible thing to behold. Hogwarts had fallen. The Ministry had fallen.

It had been after that last battle over the Ministry that Julius had decided to go back. While the Ministry burned in the background, Julius had taken the time turner from Albus and went back in time. He knew that he had to try and save young Harry from the one mistake that had doomed them forever. They had allowed Harry to go on for too long without knowing the true love of family. While the Weasleys came close, it was never enough for Harry. He always felt separated from them.

This time, this time Julius was determined not to allow it to happen again. He would save Harry from himself.


Harry sat at his desk and stared out the window. He had no idea what to think, no idea what to do, no idea what to say. He sighed and picked up a quill. He ran his fingers over the feather and considered what was probably the strangest conversation in his life.

He... had a... brother. Not only that, but his brother was none other than his potions professor! Now what?

He could feel his desire for a family pulling him. It was telling him to take what was given to him, accept it, embrace it. Harry sighed and shook his head. It simply wasn't that simple...


Harry didn't reappear until breakfast the next morning. Julius was gratified to see Harry show up so soon. Deep down, he hadn't expected Harry to come out of his room until the term was ready to begin. He gave Harry a small shy smile. "Good morning, Harry," he said softly.

Harry's lips quirked into an almost-smile. "Good morning... Julius."

Julius nearly beamed at Harry's acceptance of the truth. He held himself in check, though. Seemed that the years he'd spent as Severus Snape were good for something after all. "Harry... tell me, please, what's happened?" he said in a gentle tone.

Something in Harry broke at that. He'd been up for most of the night thinking about things. About Sirius, about Cedric, about Snape, about Julius. In the end, he'd come to the conclusion that he simply had to grasp at this chance. Even if it fell through, he had to try.

A tear streaked down his cheek as he looked up at his brother. "...I can't," he whispered brokenly.

"Oh, Harry..."


Two days later found Julius and Harry in the garden, talking.

"I want to be resorted."


"I just don't think I fit into Gryffindor anymore."

"Why not?"

"Too much has changed..."

"Like what?"

And Harry told Julius all that had happened over the past year.


A week after that, Harry and Julius went flying and stopped for a break in the noon sun under a tree.

"It's my fault, you know."

"What is?"

"Sirius' death."

"That wasn't your fault, Harry."

"Everyone says that, but everyone is wrong."

"No. We're not."

For once, Harry began to believe that maybe he was wrong and everyone else was right.


Two weeks later, Julius and Harry were having tea.

"Draco and I have started to get along."



"How did that happen?"

"We both had the idea to practice for Quidditch at the same time one Saturday. We quarreled, nothing new there, but in the end we just flew together. Something we have in common, I suppose. That happened a few times. Now we fly together fairly often. It's fun, it's... different. He's different."

"From what?"

"From what I expected. He's not very sure that it's really such a good idea to join Voldemort, though he does agree with a lot of things that Voldemort says. He brings out my Slytherin side. I... like that."

"Which is why you're so certain that you will end up in Slytherin if resorted."


"I see."

And Julius was pleased to not that Harry was opening up more and warming up a bit.


On a Wednesday, Harry and Julius went for another walk.

"Can I meet.... Erm... well, you?"


Julius smiled inwardly at Harry's question. Things would be all right, after all.



"Hello, Harry."


The elder Julius watched as his younger self met Harry for the first time. He smiled at the sight. It was done. Harry had come home.