Harry had arrived home for the summer holidays after his fifth year at Hogwarts different from when he left. His frame taller, his shoulders broader, his hair longer and his emerald eyes more haunted. The Dursley's, not used to doing much thinking about the boys' well being, were utterly clueless as to what had brought about the change. Fore it wasn't just the change in his physical appearance that raised eyebrows, but his temperament had been altered drastically as well. They had no idea the horrors Harry had faced over the course of the school year.
Harry was forced to endure many horrible things during his fifth year at Hogwarts; the tyranny of Delores Umbridge, the mounting stress of his OWL's, being banned from quidditch, becoming more intrinsically linked to the Dark lord as well as witnessing his Godfather's death. These events, combined, succeeded where alone they would have failed. They broke the boy's spirit and left him an empty shell of his former self.
Harry also learned the reason for his cursed existence. It was revealed to him, by Dumbledore.A prophecy, made before he was even born, declaring him either murderer or victim of the Dark Lord. It was this, coupled with the death of his God father, which had brought the boy so abruptly out of childhood. At the tender age of fifteen he was given the daunting task of saving the wizarding world.
It was hard to believe when looking at Harry that he could save anybody, not even himself. The raven haired boy was currently lost in yet another daydream staring up at the ceiling of the smallest bedroom at number four Privet drive. He was reliving, for the thousandth time that summer, the horrible events surrounding Sirius's death.
This happened every time Harry's mind was idle, something that happens a lot when you shut yourself away in your room all day. It was as if there was a film, always waiting, queued up in the back of his mind waiting for Harry's guilt to flip the switch and start playing. It always started in the same place in the big stone room where the veiled Dias was kept. Sirius and Belatrix are dueling, then Dumbledore charges in to save the day, capturing all the death eaters but leaving Sirius to fend for himself. Then everything would slow down as the last few blows of Sirius's duel were dealt. Sirius's face still laughing as his body arched andhe fell back through the veil.
When the filmed stopped, always at the part when Harry genuinely wished with all his being just to die and be done with life already, Harry's pillows would be drenched with the remnants of his silent tears. For some reason Harry felt the death of his god father cut him far deeper then the death of his parents. Perhaps it was because Sirius played both father and brother to Harry, or because Harry gotten to know Sirius better. He often felt guilty when he thought of this. Surely it was improper that he should be more upset over the passing of his godfather than the passing of his parents. However, Harry conceded, the smattering of memories the Dementors attacks had retrieved of his parents were hardly the stuff dreams were made of.
Harry had just finished reliving the film again and began to wipe the tears from his face when a rapping was heard on the window. Hedwig had returned from her hunt and was carrying a letter.
Harry let the beautiful snowy owl in for food and water and untied the leather carrying pouch and retrieved the letter.
Hoping this finds you well, I'm writing to invite you to come and stay with us at Headquarters for the remainder of the summer holidays. We, that is to say the guard, will be by the following evening to escort you. In case you are wondering we are still located in the same place as last time. I cannot disclose any more information at this time see you soon
Harry couldn't believe his eyes; he read and reread the letter several times. Why wouldn't they have changed locations? Surely Dumbledore knows of more secure locations. Why were they making him return to a place filled with so many memories of his deceased God father? Didn't they understand that seeing his godfather pass away and being responsible for it was eating him up inside? Didn't they understand how horrible it would be to be surrrounded by the haunting memories of his deceased godfather. Harry's thoughts turned to escape, he had to escape this torture that they were going to set upon him. He got halfway to the door when his rational mind caught up with him. He couldn't just run away, that would be exactly what Lord Voldemort would want.
Harry solemnly began to pack his trunk, gathering books, quills, parchment, and various other objects from all corners of the room. Harry sat down on his bed, lost in thought once again. This time tomorrow he would be back at number 12 Grimmauld place, could he handle it. He had handled worse, this was different somehow, this was an emotional attack not a physical one.
Harry's thoughts roamed through the darkened corridors of Sirius's house. The halls that they had decorated over the Christmas break, the room where they kept Buckbeak and caught Sirius singing Christmas carols. The fireplace wherer Harry's head had once stuck out of while talking to Lupin and Sirius about his dad. Sirius had seemed so proud and so happy discussing the day down by the lake.