Another Cycle to Begin
Author: Isabel Evelyn
Disclaimers: I don't own Harry Potter, J.K.R. does. I am getting no money for writing fan fiction.
Warnings: Slash in later chapters. This is slightly AU. In this fic, Voldemort was killed after Harry's 4th year.
Harry Potter had become the hero of the wizarding world before he could talk, but it was after the last task when it all started. Voldemort had finally risen and Harry Potter had defeated him yet again. Harry had not been in time to save Cedric, but he had finally ridded the world of the most evil wizard of the time. He had seen forms of his parents in his final duel with Voldemort and seeing them had given him the strength he needed.
After witnessing the death of their master, the Death Eaters had fled. Well, most of them anyway. Malfoy had escorted Harry back to Hogwarts. He had thanked Harry for freeing him from 'that awful mudblood'. The look on Mr. Malfoy's face was sincere. The Malfoy family and Dumbledore had a very long talk that night while Harry rested in the Hospital Wing.
School was just about ready to let out, and Harry became more famous by the second. Everyone wanted to talk to him, or get his autograph, or interview him for one reason or another, and no matter how hard Harry tried, he hated it all with a fiery passion. The owls didn't even stop when he returned to Private Drive. This irked the Dursley family to no end. They didn't want any 'ruddy owls' in their home. Luckily, Sirius came to fetch Harry half way through the summer. That was the last that England saw of their hero for a good long while.
Harry woke to new surroundings. He had never been in this room before. Harry blinked a few times before the memories of the previous night snuck into his head. Harry rolled over, and sure enough, there was some nameless girl wrapped in sheets, still sleeping soundly. Harry groaned, and tried to get his head to stop throbbing. There had to be a reason why he had woken up at some ungodly hour. At that precise moment, he heard his cell phone ring. It was muffled, but Harry could tell where it was.
"Happy Birthday, Harry!" a cheery voice on the other side of line said.
"Sirius, it's early," Harry said. "I have a hangover and you need to die for waking me up. Now, what do you want?"
"I have a birthday surprise for you, dumb ass. Get over here." Sirius said. "By the way, where did you end up crashing last night?"
"I don't exactly know... I'll be home soon, okay?"
"Gotcha," Sirius said before hanging up.
Harry sighed, and started getting dressed. His stuff was all around the room. He must have had fun last night. Harry found all of his things, and slipped out of the apartment, careful not to wake the girl. He slowly made his way back to the apartment that he and Sirius had. They had been in America for almost two years.
Harry missed his friends, but at least here, people didn't recognize him. Of course they had heard of Harry Potter, the boy who had defeated the evil wizard Voldemort, but they didn't know he was actually Harry. Here, he went by James Black. Sirius had hid his scar, and fixed his vision. His eyes were still a vivid green, but now they weren't hidden behind glasses. Harry had changed his hair as well.
Harry had just finished up a year at a school in the city. It was very similar to Hogwarts. Harry had been in all accelerated courses. At first, he had a lot of time to study since he didn't know anyone. All his classes were easy and Harry had even learned to enjoy potions.
Slowly, Harry made a group of friends. They were wild. Even though they were the best students in their year, they were also the most street-smart kids in the area. Harry, with his sharp reflexes and sharp thinking, had fit in perfectly. Sirius was happy that Harry had not spent his first year in America moping around or wondering what his friends were doing at that exact moment. Sirius was so happy about Harry's new friends that he didn't exactly care that Harry came home one night with his eyebrow pierced. When Harry was suspended for a prank that he pulled, Sirius was ecstatic. He had Harry call all his friends over that night, and he had told them stories of his time at Hogwarts. The kids were not surprised to hear that he was a prankster, just like them.
Harry got to his apartment quickly and found Sirius waiting for him. On the table there was a birthday breakfast that consisted of chocolate chip pancakes, coffee, and a very large birthday cake. Harry's friends were all in the kitchen helping make scrambled eggs, and other things they felt that they needed for breakfast. Harry could see huge tubs of ice cream in the freezer. This was a very turning out to be a very good seventeenth birthday.
Presents and a movie marathon followed breakfast. By the early evening, everyone was ready to go home. Once they all left, Sirius sat on the couch, a cup of coffee in his hand.
"So, how was your birthday?" he asked.
"It was completely awesome! I think this is the best birthday I've ever had." Harry replied. Sirius slightly smiled.
"Sirius... what's wrong..." Harry said, noticing the look on his godfather's face.
Sirius turned and looked at his godson for a long time. "I got an owl the other day. Dumbledore wants us back in England."
And that's how it was. A month later found Harry sitting in Dumbledore's office. The headmaster and Sirius were talking while Harry zoned in and out. He thought they mentioned something about lesson plans and living arrangements. Harry absentmindedly looked over the books on the selves at the back of Dumbledore's office.
"Now, Harry," Dumbledore said, addressing the green eyed youth. "You said that you had a request."
Harry nodded. Over the two years he had spent in America, Harry thought of what it would like being back at Hogwarts many times. He had realized that no matter how hard he tried, his friendship with Rom and Hermione would probably never be the same as it was before he left. He was one of the most famous people in England. Half the school would be in awe of him. Harry had no idea of how the children of former Death Eaters would react to him being back.
"Yes, professor. I would like to be sorted into another house." Harry said. He had not let his emotions break into his voice. He was greatly saddened that he would willingly separate himself from the House that he always used to refer to as 'home'.
Sirius looked practically scandalized. Dumbledore, on the other hand looked at Harry with wonder and amusement in his eyes.
"Professor, I have changed greatly in my time away from Hogwarts. I don't think that Gryffindor would necessarily be the best... fit... for me at the moment."
"I see. Mr. Potter, if you would sit down, and Sirius, if you would please close you mouth unless you plan on commenting on Harry's decision," Dumbledore said as Sirius regained his composer, "I will get the Sorting Hat."
Harry sat down in a char next to his godfathers as Dumbledore pulled out a very shabby looking hat. Dumbledore walked over to Harry and put the hat on his head.
'Ah, Mr. Potter, your back,' the Sorting Hat said. 'Now, where should I put you?'
'Anywhere is fine, just... if you wouldn't put me in Gryffindor. Yes.. Anywhere but Gryffindor.' Harry said to the Hat.
'Is that right? You were so happy in Gryffindor.'
'Things have changed. I've changed.'
'In that case, Mr. Potter,' said the Sorting Hat, 'I know just what house to put you in...'
Ron and Hermione stepped into the Great Hall. This would be their third year without their best friend. In fifth year, when Harry never arrived, there was pandemonium in England. All the papers had a field day recording the disappearance of their savior. Ron and Hermione were devastated. Harry never contacted them. There wasn't a day that went by that they did not think of him. In sixth year, Ron had finally worked up the courage to ask Hermione out, and the two had quickly become a couple. They wished that Harry would come back to them.
Ron and Hermione had sat down in their usual seats at the Gryffindor table. Soon, Ginny had joined them, and they all were having a great discussion about what they had done that summer. After the Sorting, Hermione looked up towards the staff table. To the left of the staff table, Dumbledore, Snape and McGonagall were talking to two men who had their backs towards the students. Both of them had black hair. 'Black hair like Harry's', Hermione thought, and sighed. She looked back up at the group. Snape had a weird expression on his face. It was a cross between loathing and great happiness. Professor McGonagall had somewhat sad expression on her face. Dumbledore only smiled at the two new black haired men, and went to his seat to start off the feast.
"Students!" Dumbledore said. "Welcome to a new year at Hogwarts. I just have a few announcements before we start off this new school year. First off, the forest is forbidden to all students." Dumbledore shot an amused glance towards the Gryffindor table. "Also, Mr. Filch has asked me to remind you all that there is to me no magic in the halls between classes. A full list of items that are not aloud in the halls is posted on the door to his office. I believe that there are six hundred and forty two items. Also, I would like to introduce our new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, Professor Sirius Black."
Sirius stood and waved to the students, he plastered a somewhat deranged grin on his face, and sat back down. Ron and Hermione excitedly applauded.
"I would also like to announce that Harry Potter has returned to England." Professor Dumbledore said. The Great Hall grew silent. "Mr. Potter, if you would sit down."
Harry nodded to Professor Dumbledore, and walked over to the Slytherin table and took a seat next to Draco Malfoy and Blaise Zabini. The whole hall was silent as he did this. Whispers of 'Isn't he in Gryffindor,' and 'Why is he sitting over there?' echoed through the Great Hall. Ron and Hermione looked on in shock. Harry's face was impassive as he looked at his fellow Slytherins
"Thank you very much. I wish you all a great school year. Tuck in!"
The Great Hall was deadly quiet, and Harry had received weird looks all through dinner. It was understandable; if the savior of the wizarding world came back to England, with green tinted hair and an eyebrow ring after two years where nobody knew where he was, it would be expected that he would receive weird looks. On top of everything, the once Gryffindor Golden Boy was now a Slytherin Serpent. Two years can do a lot to someone. Harry, naturally, ignored all the looks, and acted perfectly happy as he ate his dinner. Once he had asked Malfoy to pass the rolls. Malfoy had looked at Harry as if he had sprouted another head.
Towards the end of dinner, there was the start of nervous conversation. No one really knew how to act around the new housemate. Occasionally, Harry stole a glance at the Gryffindor table. Ron looked puzzled. Everyone else at the table looked too stunned to speak. Harry let out a small snort of amusement.
"What's so funny?" Zabini snapped.
"Look over to the Gryffindor table. They're about to die of shock. Ron looks more confused that I've ever seen him," Harry replied.
Both Malfoy and Zabini looked and amusement filled their eyes. The atmosphere at the Slytherin table lightened slightly. Crabbe and Goyle were eating everything in sight so Harry had to act fast if he wanted food. Pansy Parkinson timidly started a conversation with Zabini. Soon, Malfoy had even joined in. Harry sat quietly eating his ice cream. The conversation turned to Quidditch and Harry was more than happy to join in.
Meanwhile, at the Gryffindor table, Ron and Hermione were looking on in shock. Their best friend, The-Boy-Who-Lived, was talking to a bunch of Slytherins. Hermione turned back to her food and pushed it away. She promptly left the Great Hall with tears in her eyes. Ron sat, staring at Harry. 'Traitor,' Ron thought. 'He abandons us for the Snakes, the bastard.' Ron let out a small growl and left the table.
After dinner, Harry made his way to the Slytherin common room. He absentmindedly navigated his way through the dungeons until he reached the entrance. Noticing that he had no idea of what the password was, he cursed softly in Parseltongue; he would just have to wait until others arrived. Harry looked back at the entrance, and found it open. Smirking, Harry walked into the room and made himself comfortable in a chair by the fire. A few minutes later, the entrance opened up again, Professor Snape walked in followed by the rest of the Slytherin house. Professor Snape shot the once-Gryffindor-golden-boy an odd look. Harry just smiled brightly and went back to warming himself by the fire.
Once the entire house had entered the common room, Professor Snape cleared his throat. Harry turned around to face him and found both Zabini and Malfoy sitting on either sides of him.
"To all new students," Snape said, "Welcome to Slytherin. Girl's dorms are down the right hallway, and boy's dorms are off of the left hallway."
Harry saw the younger students taking note of where their rooms would be.
Snape paused for a bit before he continued. "Being in this house will not be easy. The only advice I can offer you is to not let it get to you. We are a family, no matter what the other houses may think. We take care of out own." Snape directed his gaze toward Harry. "Be proud of who we are. If you have any questions both school related or not, do not hesitate to talk to me. As head of your house, I am here for each and every one of you."
Harry zoned out toward the end of Snape's rather long welcoming speech. He played with his eyebrow ring and loosened his tie. Snape finished and left the students to get acquainted with each other. Harry quiet excused himself so he could change. A few minutes later, he reappeared in black jeans, and a black button up black shirt that he chose to leave unbuttoned for the time being. He got a lot of glances as he made his way towards the fire.
"So," Zabini said, his eyes ravaging Harry's exposed chest, "The Gryffindor Golden Boy has somewhat of a dark side."
Harry shot him a Malfoy worthy smirk and replied, "One could say that."
"And what is this, Potter? Your hair… it's… green?" Parkinson asked.
"I didn't feel like having vivid green hair, I just used muggle dye over my black hair," Harry said, explaining. "You can only see the green in the right light."
"Potter, you hair is Slytherin green. You were a Gryffindor. What the hell possessed you to dye your hair Slytherin green?" Draco asked.
Harry just laughed. "Malfoy, you must understand in America there is no Hogwarts. I was only a day student at the school I went to and I happen to like the colour green."
"Potter, I think we got off on the wrong foot." Zabini said. He held out his hand. "My name is Blaise. What's yours?"
"I'm Harry," Harry said as he shook Blaise's hand. "It's good to meet you."
"Hello, Harry. It's a pleasure to meet you, I'm Pansy."
Harry gently kissed the back of Pansy's hand. "The pleasure is all mine," he said, and winked at her. Pansy blushed a faint red.
Everyone looked at Draco, who glared at all of them.
"Fine!" Draco exclaimed. "It's nice to meet the most powerful wizard in England," Draco said. "I'm Draco Malfoy. It's an Honor to meet you, Harry."
Harry raised an eyebrow. He had never thought of himself that way. Now that he had defeated Voldemort he was the most powerful wizard in England. This was interesting, very interesting.
"It's nice to meet all of you," Harry said. "I hope I get to know you all better. By the way, where are Crabbe and Goyle?"
"They went to sleep, already. They weren't up for anything tonight." Blaise said.
"So," Pansy said, "lets welcome our new Slytherin."
They all turned toward Harry with somewhat of an evil look in their eyes. This was what Harry was afraid of, he didn't know how his new housemates would react to him, apparently, they weren't that pleased. Draco conjured up a blindfold while Blaise tied Harry's hands. They lead Harry to the edge of the common room. Harry just knew that everyone was looking at them. At least he couldn't see the looks.
"Don't make a sound, Harry, or we'll just have to silence you. Just do as we say and it will all turn out all right," Pansy said in a sweet voice. Harry just nodded.
Pansy and Blaise lead Harry though a maze of corridors and stairways and all Harry could do was follow them. It felt as if they had been walking for nearly a half an hour. They had turned around many times and Harry had lost track of where they were. Suddenly, he heard Draco say, "We're here. Watch you step, Harry."
Harry was lead into the room, and his arms were freed. Draco finally removed Harry's blindfold, and Harry took a look around.
"Where are we?" he finally asked.
"We're in the Room of Requirement." Draco said. "And Harry, you're much too trusting. You just let us take you out of the common room blindfolded with your hands tied."
Harry just snorted. "Not to sound arrogant or anything, but I figured that if I could take on Voldemort and his minions, I could most likely defend myself against you three."
Pansy, Blaise, and Draco all nodded in understanding. Harry noticed that none of them flinched at Voldemort's name. If Harry recalled correctly, the Malfoy, Zabini, and Parkinson families had all been loyal supporters of Voldemort. Harry half expected them to grab their wands and curse him into oblivion. Harry decided to voice his thought.
"No offence, but I almost expected you all to try and kill me when you took me from the common room. And note, I said try, you wouldn't have succeeded," Harry said.
Draco and Blaise snorted slightly. "Our families may not have liked what you did, but you defeated The Dark Lord. He was more powerful than any of us could have imagined and you defeated him in a duel. Our families may not like you, but we have deep respect for you," Blaise replied.
Draco just nodded. The events after the duel entered Harry's mind. Lucius Malfoy had thanked Harry and took him back to Hogwarts. Harry had never understood why. He didn't much feel like asking. From the look on Draco's face, Harry decided that he hadn't told Blaise or Pansy the whole story. Harry made a mental note to ask Draco about it later. Now, he just wanted to know what he was doing in the Room of Requirement. As if queued by Harry's mind, Pansy spoke up.
"Harry," she started, "Draco, Blaise and I were thinking that before tomorrow we should get to know you better, seeing that you are now in Slytherin. We've been pretty awful to you and your friends and we should put it behind us. We would like to be friends with you. And we will at least try to be civil towards Granger and Weasley as long as they are civil to us."
"I'm happy to hear that, but I don't even know if Hermione and Ron will want anything to do with me, now." Harry said. He received another round of weird looks. "I left right after forth year. I never told them or tried to contact them. They didn't know that I was alive or dead. Then I show up at Hogwarts and become a Slytherin. Too much has changed since I left. And, as you all should remember, Ron doesn't much care for Slytherins," Harry said with a smirk.
"We've noticed." Pansy said. "You didn't contact them at all?"
"I thought it would be weird. They would have tried to get me to come back. I needed a break, and I wanted to live where no one would recognize me. Sirius hid my scar, and I entered school as an exchange student."
"Sirius? You mean Professor Black, right? Wasn't he in Azkaban?" Blaise asked.
"He's my godfather. He took me to America. And he did go to Azkaban, but for a crime he didn't commit," Harry said. Everyone could hear the undertone of anger and hurt in his voice. Harry could see sympathy in Pansy's eyes and, surprisingly, it made him feel better.
Suddenly, the door to the room burst open, and an out of breath man with fiery eyes and long, wild hair appeared in the doorway. In one hand, he had his wand, directed at the group of Slytherins. In the other hand, he held a piece of aged parchment. Draco, Pansy and Blaise were too shocked to speak. Harry could sense the fear radiating off of them, despite their impassive faced. Harry recognized the map instantly.
"Sirius!" Harry yelled. "You've been going through my trunk again, haven't you?" Harry's expression was one of mock fury.
Eyes darted from Harry to Professor Black and back. Both had their wants out and looked as if they were ready to kill each other.
"I did nothing of the sort," Sirius said as if nothing was out of the ordinary.
Harry grinned, and lowered his wand. "Tell me then, how did you get my map?"
"Map?" Sirius looked guilty. "What map?"
Draco, Pansy, and Blaise stayed quiet and huddled together, watching the scene unravel before them.
"That map in your hand, you git. Hand it over"
"I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about Harry. This map is mine."
Harry scoffed, and held out his hand. "And how do I know that?"
"I have my own copy of the map. You honestly didn't expect all four of us to run around sharing one bloody map, now did you?"
Harry raised an eyebrow.
"Now," Sirius continued. "If I remember correctly, your map is in the back left pocket of those very pants. You said you wanted to have it on you tonight, remember?"
Harry checked, and sure enough, he found his map. Just making sure that Sirius had not tricked him, he taped the parchment with his wand and said, "I solemnly swear that I am up to no good."
Harry saw the familiar curly green words: 'Messrs. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs Purveyors of Aids to Magical Mischief-Makers are proud to present The Marauder's Map.' Sirius grinned. Together, they tapped their own maps, and said "Mischief managed."
Draco, Pansy, and Blaise now looked on with morbid fascination. Sirius looked at the three of them and let out a loud laugh. Once Harry turned around, he laughed too. The three Slytherins were frozen in shock and fear.
"Snap out of it, I'm not going to hurt you," Sirius said once he had gained enough control to stop laughing.
"You're not going to take off points for us being out after hours?" Draco asked in a meek voice.
Sirius laughed again. "No, I did far worse when I was your age. Just don't tell that git Snape that I let you off the hook." Sirius turned to Harry, "I'm sorry for barging in. I was looking at the map and saw you and these three in this room and I thought the worst." Sirius shrugged. "I guess I'm finally beginning to understand what James meant about being a parent. Wow... I feel old."
Harry laughed harder. "No worries, Siri. I understand. I never expected you to have your own map."
"It's late. I should be getting back to my rooms. I have to teach tomorrow. I'll see you lot in Defense," Sirius said.
"Good night, Professor," Pansy said.
"Call me Sirius, out side of class. Professor makes me sound so old." Sirius made a face. "I'll leave you all alone now." Sirius walked back out of the room.
"That was... interesting." Harry said, breaking the silence. He turned back to the others. "I think we should get back to the common room before any other teachers find us." The others just nodded. Harry checked his map quickly before leaving and they all made it back to the Slytherin common room without any difficulty.
The first week of classes had passed and Harry had no trouble fitting into Slytherin. Draco had even asked him to consider joining the house Quidditch team. Harry was flattered. He had not given much thought into joining the team because he knew that Draco was the Slytherin seeker. Draco on the other hand thought that Harry would be a great addition because he was a truly skilled seeker, not to mention that he knew exactly how the Gryffindor team worked. Harry said that he would think about it, and get back to him soon.
Harry had avoided Ron and Hermione like the plague. He didn't feel like dealing with all their questions quite yet. Harry had a long talk with Ginny and was glad that she understood his decision. She had told him to watch out for Ron. She told Harry that Ron had been going around the tower telling everyone that he was a traitor. Harry kept his emotions in check and decided that he would give Ron a week to cool down before he even thought to try to talk to him. Harry wished that his old friend would understand. Still, Harry knew that Ron would never fully accept it.