Title: Memoirs of One Too Young

Author: Tirya King

Email:

Category: Angst/General

Rating: PG-13

Spoilers: Up to book 5

Feedback: Is good for the body and soul

Timeline: One year after graduation

Archive: Tell me where it's going and you may put it where you wish

Summary: The Second War is ended and Harry must live in a world that he doesn't belong in. He is tired in his body and soul. But there is one more thing left for him to do before he can rest.

Disclaimer: For 8 glorious hours Harry Potter belonged to me… then I woke up. "The Book of My Life," the story's inspiration belongs to, you guessed it, Sting. sigh I need to listen to different music to get my inspiration, neh?

A/N: One of my less strange fics, but it's got a twist. Tell me what you think!

Memoirs of One Too Young

'It's been one year,' he thought heavily as he sat in a hard wooden chair next to an equally wooden and hard desk. 'One year since it all finally ended.'

In the next room over, he could hear the crystal tinkling of champagne glasses. He heard his name being the first to be toasted. Then other honored names were mentioned and the revelries continued.

The 18 year old lifted his own glass of champagne to his lips and took a hearty draught. He smiled slightly into his glass as he heard one of Ron's hardly funny, but absolutely outlandish jokes.

Green glittering eyes flitted longingly to the closed door of the study. How he yearned to just once have the ability to join the merrymakers. But no, more than just his duty hid him away from the others tonight. He had always hated large crowds and the high amount of mingling required for such. He dealt with the Press and the government out of responsibility. But being the center of attention never held his delight by any stretch of the imagination.

'Enough daydreaming, Potter,' he mentally scolded himself. 'Ron or Hermione will be in here soon wondering why I'm not out celebrating. I need to get some progress made.' He did not have the heart to refuse either of his best friends for long. But truth be told, ever since the final defeat of the Dark Lord, he felt different… more detached from everything else.

The flecks of white amidst the raven locks like unmelting snowflakes were proof enough that he did not leave the battle unchanged. Physical wounds healed in time, even the grief of burying so many before their time lessened gradually. The change he felt was more concrete and lasting than grief or pain. With a little help from his mates he had done what the whole bloody wizarding world expected him to do: save them. He had done what he needed to do, so then why did he still feel as though the world he saved didn't have a place for him in it? Had he changed so much that he could no longer relate?

Harry sighed and pulled out a piece of parchment from a desk drawer as well as quill and ink. It was time he got to work. Running a Quidditch callused hand through his pepper and salt hair he stared down at the blank sheet. Feeling awkwardly like he was writing a 2 foot essay on the 58 uses for Phoenix Tears for Snape's Potions class, he suddenly ran out of all ideas.

'Merlin!' he mentally frowned, furrowing his eyebrows. 'I'm too young to be doing this.' And Merlin knew how many times in the past 7 years he had had the exact same thought. And as always the answer his mind tossed back was the same: 'Yes you idiot boy, you are too young! You were too young at 11 to fight for the Elixar of Life. You were too young at 12 to fight a giant basilisk. At 13 you were too young to chase after a dangerous convict. You were too young at 14 to fight in the Tri-Wizard Tournament or at 15 to join a secret Order. At 16 you were taught to kill and how to write your will. And at 17 you were too young to defeat the most powerful Dark Wizard in history. Now you're too young to be writing your memoirs. Big bloody deal! You'll do it as you did all those other things.'

With the happy voices behind the door and the scratching of the quill the only sounds he could hear, Harry began his tale. 'Fine then. I'll relive this one last time. Then I'll put it to rest.

Hermione would fuss as Molly Weasley never could if she knew what he was doing. She would think he was depressed or morbid if she knew he was writing this. Like it was the last words of a dying man. She would say that if he was ever going to heal, he would have to put the past behind him. How could he explain that by going back and writing his hard fought battles that he was healing?

And Ron wasn't much better when it came to Harry's little quirks. If he knew, he would either yell at him for being an 'attention-seeking morbid prat' or treat him like fragile glass until Harry acted as though he had 'recovered' from whatever depression had seized him. Time had not been kind to the red-haired boy, nor had the public. He was ever in Harry's shadow and it was wearing him down little by little. Yet at the same time, Harry was one of Ron's only remaining 'family' left from the war.

"Harry?" asked a soft voice behind him. He heard the door to the study open and Remus walked in. Harry felt a bit guilty at his relief. He loved Ron and Hermione dearly, but Remus would understand where they would fall short.

"The others are wondering where you are," was the werewolf's gentle excuse for the intrusion.

"Alright," Harry smiled, laying down his quill. "I've been hiding from the party long enough."

"If you wish to be left alone, we can…"

"No, you don't have to. Sirius may have left me this house, but it's always open to the Order. Besides, they need to enjoy themselves and relax for a while. They deserve it."

"Yes they do," Remus nodded. That was one of the reasons why the werewolf was so dear to Harry. He had the extraordinary ability to relate to the young man in so many ways without any falsity. If he did not understand what Harry was feeling or going through, he would not pretend to. But his council was always sound and realistic.

As in now, he knew that Harry both hated crowds and could find no real reason for celebration today. Yet he did not try to force joviality and pride upon someone who neither wanted nor needed it.

"What do you think of this?" asked Harry, beckoning him over with a smile. "Dumbledore gave me the idea."

Remus looked over the few pages of writing as asked. When he was done he nodded slowly. "Yes, it seems like something he would suggest." Then he looked over at Harry as though trying to find something. "If it will help you, I think it is well thought of. You started it well enough, but you will need an editor eventually if you plan to publish. Do you?"

Harry flushed a bit, glancing at the pages. "I hadn't thought that far ahead. Do you think I should?"

The werewolf nodded without hesitation. "Your story needs to be read, Harry, if only to prevent history from repeating. I know you'll hate the extra attention it will cause, but I think it is something you should do."

"I've never really written for an audience before," Harry confessed. Remus smiled reassuringly.

"Then don't write for one. This is your story. Tell it the way you want to. But my advice is to tell the whole thing. Even the parts you're not proud of. This is your chance to explain your side, to make us understand what it was you did. Don't worry about how some of us may be portrayed or how we may react. Tell the whole truth now or it will never be done."

Harry nodded at the sound advice. "Thank you, Remus. I'll do my best."

"That's all anyone's ever asked of you." Then before the conversation got too deep he added, "Now let's see if there isn't any of Tonks' sweets left."

The young man nodded and followed his old friend out into the main living room where the festivities were being held. His friends all welcomed him to come eat with them and he paused to see how many empty seats there really were. Too many, he noted. But he held his steady smile, perfected over the years, and sat at his place between his two best friends.

After making an appearance and staying for a good hour, Harry decided that he had had enough fun for one night. He had hoped that his strange feelings from before would go away with a little butterbeer shared with good friends. However to his dismay and expectations, the sense of disassociation only increased. Almost as though he were on the outside, watching his body laugh at Ron's jokes or discuss dueling techniques with Tonks. Even when Mrs. Weasley scooped him into a fierce hug, he only felt halfway there.

It wasn't until Hedwig nipped him rather hard on the neck that he woke from his daze. She sat on his shoulder holding a roll of parchment on a leg. Excusing himself from a conversation with Dung, he unrolled the parchment.

Mr. Potter,

Please accept our most sincere gratitude for your interview last week. The article should be out the day after your anniversary.

Best Wishes,

The Daily Prophet

"What is it, Harry?" asked Hermione. He rolled it back up and tried to tuck it into his robes, but Ron was faster.

"Yeah, what could this… oh for crying out loud!" Ron's eyes grew sharp as he glared at his friend. "You told us you hated the rubbish they wrote! That you hated all the attention! What the bloody hell are doing feeding it for?!"

"We're not going to argue about this, Ron." Harry pinched the bridge of his nose. "Not tonight." He had known the red head would take it badly. He always did.

"The hell we're not! What's the title going to be this time? 'My Defeat Against the Dark Lord Part 2?' '101 Ways to Save the World?' Just don't forget us little people on your glorious rise to fame."

The room was deadly silent as they watched the two best friends quarrel. This was not a new argument. Oftentimes those that aided Harry in his fight against Voldemort were forgotten. And it bothered no one quite like it bothered Ron Weasley, who had always stood in his best friend's shadow.

"Why do you think I gave the damn interview, you selfish prat?!" snarled the frustrated boy at the end of his proverbial rope. His nerves were shot and he did not need to deal with his friend's jealousy that night of all nights. "The only reason I deal with the crap they put me through is so they can't misquote me and get the damn story wrong again! I make sure you're not left out!" Immediately he knew it had come out wrong by the way Ron rounded on him. But he was too angry to care at this point.

Hermione tried to come between the boys. "Come on you two. We should be partying tonight, not fighting. We all did it together and no one is saying any different. Go back to being stupid boys tomorrow." Ron stepped around her to face Harry again. "Ron, please…"

"I don't care if I do upset Glory Boy on his own freaking holiday! I'm sorry if I'm not grateful that you make sure to mention us as your little sidekicks, Harry. We're nothing more than little footnotes in the Greek epic tragedy that is your life! So listen you primped, spoiled, Lockhart wannabe…"

"No you listen to me you petty, selfish brat! Don't give me your woe-is-me crap, we're sick of hearing it. No matter who did what, in the end, we all pulled each other through. I've lost more in that war and the first than anyone needs to. So don't you dare whine and moan about my scar when it came at the price I had to pay. There's a little more to life than a place in the newspaper, Ron! Why don't you remember that before you go all scar-envy on me!"

He spun on his heel and pushed passed a stunned Snape to reach his haven, the study. He heard Hermione calling out to him as Mrs. Weasley raged at her youngest son. He didn't care about any of it. All he wanted was to be left in peace.

A knock came lightly upon the door before opening. Expecting the werewolf to enter, he did not stop it. However, it was not Remus sent to calm him down.

"Mr. Weasley?" he did not know what to expect from Arthur.

Arthur sat down across from Harry cautiously, as though he too did not know what to expect. "Do not let Ron's words get to you, Harry. He had a little more butterbeer than is wise… we all did. He did not know what he was saying." Harry, however, was not so quick to forgive.

"He wasn't so drunk that it blocked his true thoughts. Ron knew what he was saying and the beer gave him the guts to say it."

"Harry, we have all suffered through the war, you most of all. But as your best friends, Ron and Hermione have had to suffer right along with you. You were hurting so much and they couldn't do anything to stop it. Just being with you put them in danger, and you put them under your protection as well."

"All they had to do was be there for me," the boy sighed. "I just wanted someone there at my side."

"And they were there for you for as much of it as they could. But they still hurt for you. And they also had their own pains as well. Losing friends and family and worrying about you would make any of us a little… overbearing at times. My son has always been put to the side. We both know this. Just by being who he is, he is rarely able to stand alone."

Harry sighed and ran his long fingers through his two-toned hair. "We both acted like children tonight. Mr. Weasley, could you do me a favor?"

"Of course."

"There's something that I must do that can't be put off any longer. I will most likely be out of commission for a month or so. When Ron and the others are all sober, will you send them my apologies for the way I acted?"

"Yes, I will take care of it. You see to whatever you need. Will you need any assistance?"

"No," his eyes flitted to the parchment sheets on the desk. "This is something I need to do on my own. But thank you."

Arthur nodded, still concerned for the boy who he considered his own son. However, he knew the stubborn glint in his eye so he knew he would get no more information that night.

"Then I'll leave you to it," Mr. Weasley said by way of parting. He got up from the chair to the door. Yet, on the way out, Harry could hear a soft whisper most likely not meant for his ears. "Though I wish you would let us take the burden for once."

When the door closed softly behind the elder man, Harry shook his head. "Sometimes I wish I could let you. You can't help me with this task just as you couldn't help me fight Voldemort." He turned to the old writing desk adjusting his plethora of photos. His parents waved up at him as did one of the only surviving pictures of the four Marauders together. The Black family looked up at him from their album, curious to what he was doing. His other pictures, mostly from school, likewise peered over at him as he continued to write.

'Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of Four Privet Drive, were proud to say they were very normal, thank you very much...'

One Month Later

"Kings Cross Station, please."

Relaxing in the cab, Harry sighed in frustration. This was the 5th editor in as many hours to refuse him. He had hoped that by going to Muggle publishers, people who had no idea who he was, that his work would be quietly accepted without any ruckus. But he had miscalculated in that these people, who saw only a strange boy aged prematurely, had no reason or urge to publish an unknown writer.

He got out of the cab and paid the man. It felt strange and somewhat depressing that he had to pause and think about just how to pay in Muggle money. Buying a train ticket to the town closest to Hogsmeade, he boarded feeling exhausted.

It had been a long time since he traveled by Muggle means, and he enjoyed it thoroughly. The train lulled him gently to sleep, though he was still troubled. Thoughts of the past and present floated through his mind at random, making his dreams anything other than resting.

A few minutes after he entered a deeper sleep, the door opened to his compartment. A young woman entered quietly, seeing her fellow traveler was asleep. Even among Muggles she was ordinary. Wizards would hardly give her a second glance. A few years older than Harry, she looked as though she too had led a hard life. Also like the wizard before her, she found a certain peace in trains.

Looking over the boy, she noticed several large stacks of paper on the ground. They were dishevled as though they had fallen from his lap. With nothing else to do, she knelt down to collect them. As she did so, she noticed the title on the top page: Year One.

Reaching for another stack labeled 'Year Three,' she was startled as a hand grabbed her wrist. She dropped the papers in surprise.

"I… I'm sorry," she rattled nervously, not knowing what kind of person she woke up. "But your papers were on the ground and I thought…"

"No, no," he assured her, letting her go immediately. "It's ok. You just startled me." He helped her sit back up and collected his fallen papers.

She watched him flip through the pages to put them in proper order. A line caught her eye: 'Shut up you miserable old hag! Shut up!…'

"Did you write all this?" she asked in awe. He nodded, putting 'Year 6' in its proper order.

"In a little over a month," he answered truthfully. She stared wide-eyed.

"But there must be a thousand pages there!"

He smiled in a way that reminded her of a boy much younger than he. She decided she liked this smile. "About 2000 actually. You could say I was a bit… driven to write them." He smiled a bit wider. "It's nice to see the sun again."

She laughed at this. She decided she liked the boy that went with the smile. "What are they about?"

His smile faded slightly. "A war and the people in it."

"Oh. So I suppose it's not a very happy story then."

He thought of canary custards and Quidditch. It wasn't all bad.

"Is it a true story?"

Now his smile looked more like a grimace. "Not that anyone would believe it. At times I can barely believe it. And no one else will either if I don't get it published. I thought it would be easier in a place where I'm not… known."

"Now why would you think that?" she snorted in humor. "Unless you know a publisher, if you're not well known, you'll never get anything published."

He looked at her curiously. "Are you a publisher?"

"No," she shook her head. "But I know one. Would you like his number?"

The train came to a halt and he stood up, not looking so tired anymore. "My name is Harry." He shook her hand politely.

"I'm Joanne. About that number…"

"I can't take the number. I have to go home and… it's not possible for me to contact him as I'd like. But I wonder if you would do me a favor…"

FIN

The Book of My Life

Let me watch by the fire and remember my days
And it may be a trick of the firelight
But the flickering pages that trouble my sight
Is a book I'm afraid to write

It's the book of my days, it's the book of my life
And it's cut like a fruit on the blade of a knife
And it's all there to see as the section reveals
There's some sorrow in every life

If it reads like a puzzle, a wandering maze
Then I won't understand 'till the end of my days
I'm still forced to remember,
Remember the words of my life

There were promises broken and promises kept
Angry words that were spoken when I should have wept
There's a chapter of secrets, and words to confess
There's a chapter on loss and a ghost who won't die
There's a chapter on love where the ink's never dry
There are sentences served in a prison I built out of lies.

Though the pages are numbered
I can't see where they lead
For the end is a mystery no-one can read
In the book of my life

There's a chapter on fathers a chapter on sons
There are pages of conflicts that nobody won
And the battles you lost and your bitter defeat,
There's a page where we fail to meet

There are tales of good fortune that couldn't be planned
There's a chapter on God that I don't understand
There's a promise of Heaven and Hell but I'm damned if I see

Though the pages are numbered
I can't see where they lead
For the end is a mystery no-one can read
In the book of my life

Now the daylight's returning
And if one sentence is true
All these pages are burning
And all that's left is you

Though the pages are numbered
I can't see where they lead
For the end is a mystery no-one can read
In the book of my life

A/N: I remember an interview with JKR and she said that Harry appeared to her fully formed while she was on a train and that the rest of his world soon followed.