Disclaimer: sorry, don't own HP. JKR does. Good luck to her with that, and also her new
child.
:)

AN:Alright, I don't know where this is going, or where it comes from, but I hope that my muses
can still bring forth the essense of the characters, even if you do have to put up with my
writing style. Things might seem a bit overboard at times, but honestly I don't think it really
is, and the duel with Voldemort and Dumbledore was only a taste of what either of them can
really do. Harry's presence held them both back, though in Voldemort's case unwillingly.

===============================

Sitting at a window, staring out on the starless sky from his small space of confinement within
the home of Vernon Dursley, was a boy of fifteen, soon to be sixteen in a matter of weeks. He
was scanning the skies for an owl which he knew should be returning to him soon, as he sent his
three day note to the order to let them know that he was okay. The truth was though, he was far
from okay. He couldn't escape it. the guilt. Even after he had seen them all there on his
side at the train station, and Dumbledore had told him everything, he still felt responsible for
the death of his godfather. He had died to save this boy, just as the boy's parent's had died,
and just as he knew his friends would do that same thing if he continued to act the fool as he
had all last year. He had sent an apology to Hermione. She had been right. There never was a
reply to that letter though. It worried him. It wasn't like her to ignore him like that. He
guessed she just wasn't going to forgive him just yet. This hurt him more than he thought
possible. And all he really knew was that, it wasn't ever going to happen again.
He had been reading all his school books over ever since he returned home in order to
preoccupy himself. He wanted to become stronger as soon as possible so he could have a hope of
defeating Voldemort and ending this war. In his last letter, he had expressly sent a note to
Professor Dumbledore to ask about what he should do in that regard, or what he would be allowed
to do, and was now eagerly awaiting reply from the old man. He felt so much time had already
been wasted while sitting here in his Aunt's home for over a month and a half, while Voldemort
plotted away on the outside world, and the dementors were probably kissing whoever they wanted.
Harry shuddered at that thought, and for a moment felt as if he would be sick. No, he resolved,
he would have to overcome any fear of them he had. He could summon a patronus, right?
'Actually though', he thought, 'at the moment I probably could not summon a stag from my
wand.' This thought brought forth a feeling of failure, and revulsion at himself. He had
simply not been the same person since Sirius had died. He couldn't feel happy anymore, and more
and more often, he found that it was so much easier to just not care at all, and not to focus on
emotion. But the loss of his patronus he did not take well, and he suddenly felt very
exhausted, as the weight in his stomach and chest seemed to increase. Slowly, as the feeling
of despair and helplessness set in, the boy finally relented, and, pulling his knees up to his
chest, started to cry. Soon he was drifting off into sleep. The window was still open, and he
was hounded by nightmares, the cold air, like that of a dementor, seeping slowly into his blood.
----

He awoke from the cold a few short hours later, feeling perhaps more exhausted than before, and
now very stiff and sore on top of that, because of the cold. He did notice, in the still dark
room, that Hedwig had returned now, and there was a letter waiting for him. He sat up and used
his numbed hands to close the window. then fumbled with the letter a bit, dropping it once as
he could not seem to grasp it with his right hand. He reached down with the other hand and
snatched it off the floor, trying to use his dead hand to hold it open so he could read it while
rubbing some life back into it with his other hand.

Dear Harry,

I hope you are having less trouble from your family than usual this summer. I also
hope one day you will forgive me for making you stay there, but I want you to know, that if
there were any better way of keeping you safe I would allow you to leave in a heartbeat. I
understand your need to do something, and I will be sending Alastor, Remus, and Nymphadora
to take you elsewhere soon, where you can get some things done. But I must warn you Harry,
before I can start you on the path to mastering your abilities, there is one obstacle in our
way. And that is your connection to Voldemort. You will have to learn occlumency, or I
fear you will always be plagued through your linked minds. I will begin teaching you myself
as soon as possible, of course. There are also many other things we must discuss, but that
will have to wait, I'm afraid. I shall see you soon Harry.

Sincerely,

Albus Dumbledore


Harry groaned. He would have to wait until he could leave the Dursleys' it seemed, yet again,
before he got any real answers to the questions he had posed in his letter. And probably until
after he had mastered Occlumency as well at this point. He remembered his lessons with Snape,
and groaned again. Occlumency seemed to be one thing he couldn't do, although admittedly he had
been very preoccupied for his previous lessons. He tossed the letter aside, and, this time
wrapping the blankets around him, and resolving to do better from now on for the sake of his
remaining friends, went back to sleep.

-------

Harry awoke to the usual sound of his aunt knocking at the door and sliding his food for the day
under the flap that they had installed in his second year. Apparantly their idea of treating
Harry better was to avoid him at all costs and encourage him to remain in his room, though they
said almost nothing to him if he left it, and pretended he didn't exist. He, quite honestly,
found this to be an improvement, and didn't really care how they felt about him anymore.

He sat up, rubbing his eyes, and putting on his glasses as he tried to forget his nightmares,
and then he noticed that a large great horned owl was sitting on Hedwig's perch, and she was
looking over at him with mingled awe and fear, probably because of his shear size, and the old,
wizened look in its eyes. He approached the large owl cautiously, looking for some kind of a
note or letter he might be carrying, but the owl seemed to realize this and it cawed at him,
it's eyes were twinkling now and it seemed to be...chuckling at him?

The sight was a bit unnerving, and he stared up into the owl's eyes again, and suddenly realized
that the twinkle he found there was quite familiar.
"Professor? Is that you?"

The bird nodded ever so slightly, his face becoming serious, and a bit angry as he nodded
towards Harry's meal on the floor, which was shoved under the door only a minutes before. Harry
noticed where he had looked, and sighed

"I really don't care about that, professor, it's typical for them. They just want to avoid
contact with me, and quite honestly, the feeling is mutual. Still,"

he said picking up the cold breakfast food before him, some of which actually looked like it had
been bitten into before being placed on the plate,

"It does leave something to be desired at times," he said absently, "and it certainly is never
as good as a meal cooked by the elves."

He grabbed a sausage that was not bitten off of and shoved it in his mouth, sitting back onto
his bed. The owl suddenly looked very old and weary, as well as sad, and he hopped off the
perch onto the floor, where he suddenly grew about five feet and became the headmaster of
Hogwarts, Albus Dumbledore, who looked equally sad as he watched Harry eat the food. He sighed.
Harry finished eating what little there was on the plate that was edible, and stared up at the
headmaster, both eager for answers to his questions, and dreading his response to what he had
just seen. He had never wanted the headmaster to see him like this, at his weakest, locked up
in his room at the Dursley's.

"Harry, I am sorry for making you stay here, but you know we could have done something about
that if you had mentioned it in any of your letters. That was the reason your friends wanted
you to write to them. So that those of us who are of age could do everything possible to make
your stay here more comfortable."

Harry just stared up at him, his eyes widening a bit, and he asked skeptically,

"What could you have done? Threatening them the way Moody did would solve nothing, really. You
can't change the fact that they hate me without altering their memories, and even then I doubt
it would work."

But the old man was shaking his head even as Harry said this.

"No, Harry, I would not have done anything to your family, that would be pointless, as you just
said yourself. I would have given you the means to remain here comfortably."

"For instance," he snapped his fingers, "Dobby?" he said, and a half second later Dobby the
house elf popped into existance next to Dumbledore.

"Yes sir, Professor Dumbledore, sir? What can Dobby do for you?"

"I need to ask you to provide food for Harry here while he stays in this house."

"Yes sir, Professor Dumbledore, sir! Dobby is happy to serve Harry Potter!"

And with that Dobby popped out again.

Dumbledore turned to Harry, "if there is anything you would like just tell him. The elves are
not bound by my apparition wards on the castle, so he can reach me at any time. If you need him
just call his name as I just did. He can hear it."

But Harry was suddenly very worried about something.

"Sir, you do remember that Dobby's magic has been blamed on me in the past. Won't I get
expelled if he is doing magic around here? And what about you just now transforming like that?
I didn't know you could, by the way. Hermione never mentioned you when she was talking about
all the registered animagi in this century."

"Don't worry about that Harry, I have convinced Mr. Hopkirk to change his policies on detecting
underage magic in your somewhat special case. He now has his detection spells focus on your
wand's signiture, so as to determine whether or not it is you using the magic. And you needn't
worry about my transformation either, as it is wandless. I will explain about why I am not
listed as an animagi later."

Harry looked relieved at this, and smiled slightly, but then suddenly thought of someting.

"But sir, what about wandless magic?"

Dumbledore smiled, his eyes twinkling mischeivously. "Well, Harry, that is a good question," he
chuckled lightly, "I suppose he would think that it was Dobby's magic if you were to
'accidentally' do something. Actually, I have been meaning to talk with you, Harry, about your
abilities."

He walked over to Harry's bed, conjured up a chair and asked "do you mind if I sit down, Harry?
This may take a while."

Harry nodded to him, and he plopped down into the cushioned chair, making himself comfortable.
Dumbledore sighed heavily, and looked as if he was both dreading this conversation, and also
eager to begin it.

"Harry," he started, "Do you, perhaps, recall any magic that you did accidentally when you were
younger, before you knew about your abilities?"

Harry's eyebrows raised at this. He had not been expecting the headmaster to ask him about
that, of all things. Some of the memories of his accidental magic as a child were a bit
shameful to him. Being chased by Dudley's gang, and his aunt cutting his hair, and trying to
force him into Dudley's old clothes that he hated. Setting that boa on his cousin accidentally.
His expression darkened as he went over these memories in his mind, preparing to relate them to
Dumbledore.

"Well, sir. Yes, I do remember a few things that stand out in my mind now as magical. The
first of which being...well, you see, my hair..."

Harry stopped for a minute, not sure how to explain this himself,

"it has always seemed to have a mind of it's own, you see. And I know that I must have had more
haircuts than the rest of my class at my old school combined, but it never did any good, the
hair would just grow back almost instantly. And there was one time when it was particularly
severe, and my aunt had practically shaved my head except for one place which she claimed she
left to 'hide that horrid scar'. I didn't like it, and fell asleep that night worrying about
how the kids at school would surely make fun of me for this new haircut, but when I woke up, it
was back to normal. I remember they locked me in the cupboard for a week as punishment. Which
I didn't even understand why at the time. And really, I still don't get it. Why is my hair so
uncontrollable, and how did I grow it back like that?"

Dumbledore was smiling slightly broadly, the twinkle returned to his eyes again.

"Well Harry, you see, the thing is, sometimes a prospective student who is brought our attention
at Hogwarts has abilities which, if not either closely supervised or simply locked away until a
more managable time, then they could cause a lot of trouble with the secrecy policy the
wizarding world keeps. I'm sure you would understand this?"

Harry nodded, but then frowned, realizing what that must mean. Dumbledore had been keeping some
of Harry's abilities away from him. He wondered what they could be that they would have to be
taken away.

Dumbledore continued on.

"Well, you see, the last child which had to have some of their more extravagant powers locked
away, in order to keep him from accidentally using them around muggles, and also to protect
their classmates, was one Tom Marvolo Riddle. He was quite angry when he discovered what
Headmaster Dippet had done to him, and demanded they return his full abilities to him at once.
He was most upset when the Headmaster refused, and in the next year, of course, the basilisk
began attacking the school. Eventually he was able to regain his powers anyway, though." he
sighed.

"Do you know why I am telling you this Harry?"

Harry nodded.

"I think so. You have been keeping some of my abilities locked away from me? Are these other
things which I gained when he tried to kill me? What kinds of powers would you need to keep
away from us, anyway, when you're trying to teach us about magic?"

"Well, Harry, yes, I have been keeping some of your abilities locked away, although I tried to
do this as little as possible, but it still could not be avoided in all cases. As you know, you
can still converse with snakes and I hope you will not place bias on that ability of yours just
because it is a Slytherin trait. It is a very useful skill, and I know that Voldemort has many
spies that he could not have without that ability."

Harry thought about this, and realized that Voldemort could have an entire network of snakes
watching things at all times. He looked up at Dumbledore.

"There are anti-snake wards around Hogwarts, of course." he said, understanding Harry's unease,
"I have to give express permission for one to be allowed onto the grounds, or to leave them.
Snakes which are already there, however..."

Harry nodded, remembering the basilisk. He didn't look up again, so Dumbledore continued on.

"Well, as to your other question, and also about your hair, I shall can tell you that, it is
because Voldemort, and subsequently yourself, apparantly, both have polymorph abilities."

At Harry's look of confusion, he added

"This means that you can change your appearance to virtually, well, anything, with enough
practice. In case you haven't guessed, this is how I transformed into an owl before. It is an
excellent disguise, I think, to be arriving here under the guise of delivering your mail. Tom,
however, has apparantly never had much use for this ability, although I know he changes himself
to look more snakelike, as you must have seen with your own eyes, on more than one occasion, and
to change into a few different animals, a basilisk being one of them-"

Harry, whose jaw had been hanging open, blanched at this new peice of information.

"but at least he has not been able to master changing himself into other people, he must still
use potions for that. Besides, he is a horrible actor, if I do say so myself. He tried to fool
me once, but as I have told you I am a skilled legilimens, and so it didn't really work that
well. Plus he can't seem to get his voice to change correctly"

Harry laughed.

"You're right, he wouldn't be any good at that. But..sir, are you going to allow me access to
this ability, now that I know about it? I do need every advantage I can get, you know, and I-"

Dumbledore held up a hand to stop him.

"Yes, Harry, I will unlock your abilities as soon as I explain what each of them do, although as
I said before, some of them will have to wait until you have mastered occlumency, or if not,
then at least have some way of keeping Voldemort out of your mind, which I am currently doing
research on. Now, you should know that there is one ability which I took from you, although it
very much pained me to do so, that did not come from Mr. Riddle at all. It comes from your
mother."

Harry froze at this news. There was something his mother left him? He was suddenly bombarded
with the only clear memory of her that he had, screaming for Voldemort to not kill him.

"I will return this power to you now, along with the polymorphmagus ability, after I've
explained it fully. This ability, as far as I know, has yet to be named formally, as your
mother seemed to be the only known person capable of it save perhaps the ancient wizard of which
our records are sketchy at best. She kept it a secret, and only a few people know about it even
today. It is linked to the ancient magic which she used to protect you when you were a baby,
You have natural healing powers, Harry. You could, without even a wand in your hands, heal someone
with life threatening wounds, even most spell damage can be reversed. I believe your powers in
this regard may prove to be even greater than your mother's, and now you have additional
strength in you to help,which you gained when Voldemort tried to kill you."

he paused, noticing the sad look on Harry's face.

"This ability will not allow you to heal yourself, however, although you will recover quickly
from any injuries you sustain. That effect is also brought on by your polymorph abilities.
Your mother told me once that this power also brought on the ability of empathy, or that it was
a large part of this ability. I'm not entirely sure what that would mean, but I would prepare
for somewhat of a shock when I do this, Harry. Would you like for me to call one of your
friends here for support? Someone you trust with this knowledge? It will be a little
overwhelming at first, I think."

Harry thought for a moment. Ron and Hermione?...No. I couldn't let Ron see me as I am now, I
must look horrible with the way Dumbledore keeps looking at me. And Hermione...Hermione
wouldn't want to. She probably doesn't want to be friends anymore after the way I've treated
her.

He tried imagining spending his next school years without Hermione. He found that he couldn't,
and the harder he tried, the more the tears threatened to overwhelm him. So who, exactly, did
he have?

No one. said a voice in the back of his mind. You have nothing. You will never
be able to live as long as he survives.


He looked up at the old man, sadly. "I...I can't really think of anyone." he just managed to
get out without choking on it.

Dumbledore looked disheartened by this, but he seemed to collect himself and said "Very well
then, Harry. I shall return to you the polymorph abilities, and then your empathic healing
powers, since the latter may take longer to adjust to, although the first may hurt a bit, too."

He removed a vial from within his robes.

"Here. You must drink this. It should take affect after a few seconds."

Harry took the vial, removed the stopper, and drank the contents. It tasted like a simple water
at first, but then the taste began changing rapidly, and his taste buds were quickly
overwhelmed. Then the liquid hit his stomach, and he could feel it creeping over his entire
body slowly. He looked at his hands and legs in front of him, which had begun changing rapidly
into different shapes. At first it was very painful, and all his muscles seemed to seize up,
leaving him temporarily paralyzed. Then, slowly, the pain lessened, and the transformations
slowed down, finally coming to rest, leaving Harry at least looking normal. He felt quite
different however. It was as if he was feeling his physical body for the first time. He could
literally feel every cell in his body, and he knew, instantly, that every one of them was under
his complete control. He could command them to transform his body into whatever he needed.
Hell, he could sprout a tree out of his head if he wanted. He immediately tried to remove the
scar from his head, and encountered a considerable amount of pain.

He hissed, and brought his hand up to his forehead.

"Ah yes, Harry, I thought that might happen. I should have warned you that probably would not
work. I'm afraid that, whatever form you take, you will not be able to rid yourself of that scar
until Voldemort is destroyed. After that, however, it should begin to fade. I should also
advise that you not attempt anything too complicated just yet. I will of course help you with
this, and when I cannot I will have Tonks do it in her spare time. I'm sure she would love to
have someone that she can play with."

He chuckled at this last comment, and Harry looked a bit scared.

"Well, you could at least do something about your hair now. Unless of course you do not wish
to?"

Harry instantly remembered his father intentionally making his hair look like his did now, just
to try and impress random girls. He changed it so that it would lie flat, and observed the
results in the mirror in his wardrobe. He looked...odd. and it made him feel uncomfortable,
too. Reluctantly, he groaned and reverted to the hairstyle he was used to wearing.

Dumbledore chuckled a bit. "You know Harry, actually I've always felt that look suited you
anyway."

The room became silent again, and Dumbledore's face lost it's previous amused appearance.

"Well, Harry, before we do this, are you sure you do not wish to have someone else besides
myself here with you? I'm sure I could get Ms. Granger to come here in a heartbeat. She has
been pelting me with owls ever since end of term, questioning about your wellbeing and when we
were going to remove you from this place. She also says she has been trying to call you on the
telephone. But now that I see how you were being fed, I take it you have not left your room in
order to take any calls. She apparantly was right when she said you were probably lying in your
letters about being treated well."

He guestured towards Harry's now almost empty plate of food.

Harry perked up at this news. She had been trying to call him? Did that mean that maybe she
still wanted to be friends after all? A great wave of relief spread over Harry. Suddenly
things began to look better. Wait. Why hadn't the Dursleys told him she had been trying to
call? He suddenly felt his anger surfacing. He got up and walked towards the door in a cold
rage, but was blocked by Dumbledore.

"Harry? What is it? Am I to assume that you did not receive these calls because your relatives
kept the fact that you had been getting calls from you?"

Harry nodded, and said "Yes, now can you please let me out of here so I can go and discuss with
them the reasons why they should not have done this to my best friend? They probably hung up on
her or even cursed at her for calling their house!"
==============

hmm...that seemed as good a place as any to stop. I guess I'll continue when I get the chance.
I am quite busy at the moment. I think Harry will completely ignore Vernon in the next scenes,
and try to converse only with his Aunt. Then he'll scare the crap out of them by transforming
into a miniature horntail. But the transformation won't work well enough for him to function
very much physically, and he'll not be able to breath fire at all. You of course need to study
the animal you want to transform into before it will work properly. Now, in this story, I will
not be saying who will end up with whom. You'll just have to wait and see. I stuck it in a
random section, and whether that comes true or not we will just have to see. If it doesn't, then
I'll change it. no harm, no foul. If you have any comments or criticisms please post a review.