I am your son, Harry
O'Neill's office, SGC, February 8, 2002
Jack picked up his phone on the first ring and barked, "O'Neill."
"Colonel, this is Sergeant Tomlinson at the main gate." The voice on the other end of the phone nervously identified itself. "Sorry to disturb you, sir, but there's a couple here by the name of Potter and they are asking to speak with Dr. Jackson."
O'Neill pinched the bridge of his nose and sighed. I really don't need this today. He could understand why the Sergeant sounded nervous. Ever since the disastrous mission to Kelona a few weeks ago, everyone at the SGC had been treading carefully around the remaining members of SG-1.
"Colonel... Colonel O'Neill," Tomlinson's voice pulled him back to the present.
"Sorry, Sergeant," O'Neill apologized, "my mind wandered for a moment."
"Understandable, sir," Tomlinson told him, then got back to the matter at hand. "Sir, what do you want done with the Potters?"
As much as he wanted to tell the Potters to go jump in a lake, or maybe down an active volcano, he had to honor his friend's last request, so he told the sergeant, "Have them escorted to the visitor's room on level twelve and make sure there's a VCR in there."
"Yes, sir," Tomlinson sounded relieved.
O'Neill hung up the phone and stared at the top of his desk for moment before picking up the phone and dialing a number.
Once the phone on the other end was picked up, he asked, "Carter, am I interrupting anything critical?"
After a pause for her comments, he told her, "The Potters are here."
There was silence on the other end of the line. After waiting a few minutes to see if his 2IC was going to say anything, he added, "I wanted to see if you wanted to go with me when I told them."
After listening to her apologetic refusal, he assured her. "It's okay, Carter. Believe me, if I hadn't promised Daniel I'd do this, I wouldn't go either."
There were a few more minutes of small talk, before O'Neill realized, he was just delaying the inevitable, and he hung up the phone. Pulling a video cassette out of a side drawer, he stared at it, remembering the day it had been made.
Daniel was sitting on the edge of his bed in the isolation room, his hands heavily bandaged.
Jack listened in horrified silence as Daniel matter-of-factly listed what was going to happen to him as he died a very painful death from a lethal dose of radiation, probably before the sun rose tomorrow. Even the slightly sarcastic note in his voice as he ended with, "and there is no medical treatment to prevent that," didn't reassure the older man.
He had tried to offer hope. "Maybe not that we know of."
Daniel quickly shot that idea down. "Jack, we don't go running to our off-world allies every time an individual's life is at stake."
Jack started to disagree, but Daniel hurriedly continued, "and don't go telling me this is any different, because my life is no more valuable than anybody else's."
There was nothing he could say that would change Daniel's mind and though he was angry about it, Jack didn't let it show on his face. Daniel didn't need that right now. The thing that bothered him most was that Daniel didn't realize how important he was. The younger man always fought so passionately for others, but never would for himself.
The people that Jack was the most angry with were the people of Daniel's home reality. It was their treatment of Harry that gave Daniel, even now after having a chance to live a whole new life, such a poor sense of self worth. That poor sense of worth, had probably only been enhanced in this reality by his being passed from foster family to foster family, because his grandfather, Nick Ballard, would never release full custody so he could be adopted.
O'Neill was determined not to give up though and right now he had a job to do. He needed to find out what happened on Kelona. Meeting Daniel's gaze he asked, "what happened?"
Daniel looked away, saying, "It doesn't matter."
"Yes it does," Jack disagreed.
Daniel looked at him in disbelief.
"You didn't try and sabotage anything." Jack stated confidently.
The older man's certainty was enough to get Daniel to say, "There was an accident. I guess the scientist's figured the government would hold them responsible. I guess they figured it would be easier to blame me."
"And you're okay with this?" Jack didn't believe that for a moment.
Daniel confirmed his belief by saying, " no... but there's not much I can do about that."
"Yes, there is." Jack wanted to scream 'fight Daniel, don't let them destroy you.'
Daniel calmly pointed out. "If they really want to blame me, denying it isn't going to change anything." He went on to explain his reasoning. "Ten thousand years ago, a goa'uld tried the same experiments that they're trying and he nearly blew the entire planet to bits. When I tried telling them that, they wouldn't listen. They're gonna build that bomb and nothing we say is going to stop them."
There was nothing Jack could say to disagree with Daniel's logic. He desperately wanted to be able to give his friend some hope that his sacrifice, whatever it had been, hadn't been in vain, but he couldn't think of anything to say. Daniel had always been the one who was good with words, not him.
Before the silence between them could become uncomfortable, Daniel asked, "Jack, could you or Sam set up a video camera for me as soon as possible?"
Jack was hoping his teammate was going to say that he was going to record a message to the Kelonan government, but Daniel told him, "I need to record a message for the Potters. In case they come back here."
O'Neill entered the visitor's room on level twelve, to find Lily and James Potter seated at the table.
"Colonel O'Neill," Lily spoke up surprised. "We asked to see Dr. Jackson. We went by his apartment, hoping he might have heard from our son recently and found the apartment empty. The other tenants didn't know what had happened to him, so we thought we'd try here."
"Do you have your wands?" O'Neill asked.
"Yes," James told him.
O'Neill opened the door and called, "guard."
The soldier came into the room.
"Give them to the guard." O'Neill ordered. "You'll get them back when you leave, just like last time."
"Why should we do that." James demanded. "We just want to see Dr. Jackson. We don't intend to harm the man."
O'Neill just stared at him, poker-faced. "If you want to hear what I have to say, you will give your wands to the guard. Otherwise, he will escort you out of here and you will not be allowed back in."
The Potters just stared at him as if he'd lost his mind.
Jack looked at his watch. "I have things I need to do, so you have one minute to hand those wands over, or I'm out of here."
"You can't be serious." Lily protested. "We don't intend to harm you."
Seeing the man was serious, they pulled their wands out of their sleeves and handed them to the guard.
The guard took up his position back outside the door, their wands tucked into his belt.
"See that wasn't so hard." Jack's voice took on a patronizing air.
"Now, can we see Dr. Jackson?" Lily requested.
"I'm afraid not." O'Neill told them. "You see Dr. Jackson died a few weeks ago."
"Oh, I am sorry." Lily said and strangely enough O'Neill believed she was.
"He did leave a message for you two, though," O'Neill held up the video cassette, "just in case you came back here."
He popped the video cassette into the VCR that was hooked to the flat paneled monitor and pushing the play button, stepped out of the way so they would have a clear view of the screen.
The screen went blue and then an image of Dr. Daniel Jackson appeared. They could see what looked like cuts on his face and he appeared to be dressed in a hospital gown.
The man on the screen rubbed his nose a moment and then began speaking. "This message is for Mr. and Mrs. James Potter. If you are hearing this message, then despite the attempts of my friends to prevent it, I am now dead. I know that Jack and the others would have tried right up to the moment I took my last breath, but I doubt that even Madame Pomfrey could have cured this. And I strongly doubt that Snape could brew a potion to counteract it."
Lily and James looked at each other stunned. How did this man know anything about Madame Pomfrey or Professor Snape, both of whom were still at Hogwarts? Just how much had Harry told him about their world?
"In case you haven't figured it out, by those two names I just dropped, I will make it a little clearer for you." The eyes on the screen seemed to bore into them almost as if he were right there in the room. "I am or rather I was Harry James Potter, son of Lily and James Potter."
The couple sat down in the nearest chairs, staring at the screen in disbelief. How could this man be their son?
Their son's voice continued on. "If you're wondering how I cam look so different and it not be a glamour, I'll tell you. Among the spells in the Founder's Library was one for making an adopted child a genetic match to the family that took them in. I simply used it to create a life for myself, in the past. You're also probably wondering why I didn't tell you, remember what I told you that day in the infirmary: 'If I found out that my parents had had been alive all this time, while I thought they'd been dead, I would tell them to go to hell and take the shortest route to get there'. Well, welcome to hell."
There was a pause as a nurse injected something into a tube they could see behind Daniel/Harry's shoulder.
"It took me a little while, to figure out how you managed to convince others you were dead, when you really had run away." The man on the screen continued once the nurse was out of sight. "You must have created a couple of simulacrums to take your place. They were the ones who died, not you, which means that Dumbledore lied to me again when he told me it was my mother's love that protected me from the Killing Curse. You weren't there, Mrs. Potter, so how could your love have protected me? Instead it was the love of your double that protected me, if a construct is capable of love. I don't know why I should be so surprised by that. My life as Harry Potter was all one big lie, almost from the day I was born."
There was another pause, as Daniel/Harry took a drink of water and the voice of an unseen woman asked, "Are you okay, Daniel?"
He nodded and then turned his attention back to his unseen audience. "I'll tell you how I see things, Mr. and Mrs. Potter. You may have given birth to me, and you and your husband may have looked after me for the first thirteen months of my life, but I don't consider you my parents, or even family. You weren't there when I needed you most and I did need you. I needed someone there to give me the love and encouragement all kids are supposed to get as they grow up. I needed someone I could go to with my problems. After all I was the one that I had a big fat target painted on my butt courtesy of Voldemort and a prophecy made by batty old Trelawney. Instead I learned that the only person I could ever rely on was me. I learned very quickly not to depend on anyone else, because every time I did, it was used against me. Why weren't you there? Why did you choose Dumbledore over me? I was your son for god's sake. That surely should have meant something to you. Apparently it didn't though. Instead, you ran away and let everybody in the wizarding world think you were dead. I bet you never even bothered to check on me. You probably told yourselves it was for the best and that you would make it all up to me, once we were back together again. I'm willing to bet that Dumbledore never told you half the stuff, he put me through, in order to forge the weapon he needed to take out Voldemort."
Daniel/Harry looked away for a moment. When he looked back his face was implacable. "Well, I'm here to tell you that even if you had figured out who I was that day in the infirmary, nothing you could have done would have ever made up for the fact that you deserted me, leaving me in a hell of Dumbledore's design. And lest we forget one other important fact, you, James Potter, left your best friend Sirius Black, to rot in Azkaban prison, for the crime of killing you and your wife along with thirteen other people on a normal London street. I can't help wondering if Sirius had been alive today, would he have forgiven you for that? I certainly can't."
There was another pause, as their son looked down at something they couldn't see. "I've been told that when you're dying, you should forgive those who have wronged you and not take that anger into the afterlife, but I can't do that with you two. This may sound crass, but I just wanted you know that the child you gave birth to, and then abandoned, is dead. I was your son, your responsibility and yet you chose Dumbledore and the wizarding world over me. You and you husband can return to the world you chose over your own son, secure in the knowledge that the only child you ever had and then discarded like unwanted trash, is now beyond your reach. You are dead to me. You have no right to me or anything I might have possessed. If god is merciful, then I hope that I am now with my wife, Sha're."
The screen became blue again at that point and O'Neill used the remote to shut off the tape.
James turned to look at O'Neill, his expression one of contained rage. "Did you know that Dr. Jackson was our son, when we were here in July?"
"No." Jack told him. "I and several others found out around the end of October."
"And you didn't bother to tell us, that he had been found." Lily sounded upset.
"Why? Daniel's wishes were what counted in this matter, not yours." Jack told her matter-of-factly. "As he said, you have no say in any decisions he made."
"His name was Harry Potter." James said through gritted teeth.
"No, his name was Daniel Jackson." O'Neill disagreed. "He went by that name a lot longer than he went by the name Harry Potter. He took that name when he took on the life of a boy who died at age seven."
"How did my son die, Colonel O'Neill?" Lily wanted to know.
"He died from radiation poisoning" Jack told the story he and Sam had come up with in case the Potters ever did come back. "We were on a diplomatic mission to a underdeveloped nation and Daniel was being shown through some of the labs. Unfortunately we didn't know that they were working with a very unstable radioactive material there and intended to build a bomb. Something went wrong when they were putting the thing together and if it hadn't been for Daniel's quick actions in separating the radioactive core from the bomb the whole city, if not the whole country would have been destroyed."
O'Neill moved over to take the tape out of the VCR. "We brought him back here as quick as we could, but it was too late. The best we could do was make him comfortable as he died. Though we did try everything humanly possible."
"Where is my son's body?" James wanted to know.
"He is buried with his wife." Jack told them. "As he wanted to be."
"Where?" James repeated.
"I'm not going to tell you." O'Neill countered.
"He's our son." Lily pleaded. "We have the right to take him home."
"No you don't." O'Neill shook his head. "You heard it from his own lips. Get it through your heads, you have no rights. You gave up those rights when you left him, so don't you talk about your rights. He found the place where he belonged and it was here."
"This is why you had us give up our wands, isn't it?" James asked. "Harry told you about the Imperious Curse and you were afraid we'd use it on you to force you to take us to our son's grave."
"That was part of the reason." O'Neill agreed, then added. "Not that I could take you to his grave. He is buried with his wife in her home country. His father-in-law handled all the arrangements, so even I don't know where he is buried. That was the way Daniel wanted it. He wanted there to be no way, for you to ever take him back to that reality, living or dead. He didn't want to become a public spectacle and from the way he talked, he surely would become one if you got your way."
Mrs. Potter looked shell-shocked at the realization that her only son was dead and that he hated them. And that now they would have no way to ever make it up to him.
Jack felt a slight amount of sympathy for them. He had been where they were sort of. It was never easy to bury a child. They were supposed to outlive you, not you them. He had to stay strong for Daniel's sake. He had to honor his friend's last wish with regards to them.
Gently, he told them, "Go home, Mr. and Mrs. Potter. Just go home. There's nothing here for you now. Your son is gone and he will never return. You will never be able to make up for what you did. Just go home and get on with your lives. And let us get on with ours."
Lupin's Home, February 8, 2002, 11pm.
"Hello Remus," A man Lupin had never seen before greeted him.
He was dressed all in white and there was an almost blinding light behind him. It faded after a few moments, and Lupin was able to get a better look at the man. He appeared to be in his early thirties, with brown hair and blue eyes.
"Hello," Remus returned the stranger's greeting, then asked. "Who are you?"
The stranger scratched his chin for a moment before saying, "It has been a long time old friend and my appearance has changed quite a bit since you last saw me. How about I give you a hint? You taught me how to cast the Patronus Charm when I was thirteen."
"Harry," Lupin couldn't believe it. "It is really you, Harry?"
"Yes, Moony, it's really me."
Remus found it odd to be looking into blue eyes rather than the emerald green he was used to, but everything he knew told him this was indeed Harry Potter. "You look completely different."
"I can thank the Founder's for that." Harry told him. "One of the spells I took with me was one that could permanently change a person's appearance, right down to the DNA. I'm sport of an amalgam of Harry and a boy named Daniel Jackson who died when he was seven. I took his identity to give myself a new life."
"What are you doing here?" Remus questioned suspicious.
"I came to give you some news and a gift of sorts." Harry told him. "You have no idea how much trouble I had finding the right reality again."
"What news?" Remus was now even more suspicious.
"The Potters will be returning to this reality soon." Harry announced.
"So they found you." Remus concluded. "I didn't know they were alive Harry, believe me I didn't."
"I know you didn't, Moony," Harry was quick to reassure him. "They didn't get what they wanted though. They're also probably going to be pretty mad at Dumbledore, if he's still around. I just wanted you to know that when they come back they are going to be announcing my death."
"Your... death?" Remus went suddenly pale. "You're a ghost?"
"No... no old friend." Harry hastened to assure him. "I'm quite alive. I'm just in a different form now."
"I don't understand."
"I was dying, Remus," Harry stated, "but somehow I knew my work wasn't finished yet. A being named Oma Desala, helped me transcend beyond my dying physical body, to a form of pure energy. I just wanted you to know the truth before the Potters returned."
"And you want me to keep it a secret, don't you?" Remus guessed.
"I would prefer that, yes." Harry admitted, "but I can't force you to keep silent."
"Don't worry, I won't breath a word... to anyone." Remus promised him.
"Thank you, Moony," Harry smiled "And now before I go, I have a present for you."
Harry reached out and touched Remus' chest with a glowing hand. The werewolf felt energy coursing through him and found he couldn't move until Harry's hand left his chest.
"What did you do to me?" Remus asked after a few moments.
"Among the gifts I've acquired in my new form, is the ability to heal." Harry told him. "I asked for and received permission from my mentor, to free you from your curse."
"Free me..." Remus whispered.
"Yes, my very dear friend," Harry nodded. "You are no longer a werewolf. You will no longer have to fear the full moon."
As Harry began to fade from sight, the former werewolf heard, "Enjoy your life, Moony."