Disclaimer: I don't own the Potterverse.
Setting: I wrote this before HBP came out…so I do not address any of the events during the book.
Author's Note: Originally, I posted this as a songfic to Green Day's Boulevard of Broken Dreams. It was quite well liked by my friends and had quite a few reviews. Gut-wrenching as it was for me, I had to take it down because the bosses at this site began removing stories with song lyrics. I decided to remove the lyrics and repost it here. For the original version, ask me for the link to my ficwad or fictionalley account.
"A Walk Through Godric's Hollow"
Harry pulled his cloak tightly about him, his head bowed slightly so that the wind could not blow off his hood. He shivered and began to walk, cursing the snow as it hit his face. Even nature seemed to be against him on this icy December night. But nature had a good excuse; it couldn't understand his problems. His friends should have been different, but they weren't. They didn't understand either.
Since his seventeenth birthday, Harry had been plagued with a desire to visit this place. He'd wanted to come much earlier, but just when he was about to leave, the guard had barged in. He knew then that his friends had betrayed him. He was sure they meant well, but, nevertheless, they had told the others and broken their promise to him. Harry's quest had been put off—until now.
He took advantage of the Christmas holidays. The Black house had been brim-filled tonight, Christmas Eve. No one noticed him slip out the front door with one of Lupin's tattered cloaks over his arm. They would, no doubt, be looking for him soon. But they wouldn't think to check here first, even if it was the the very first place the elders thought of when it came to the fame of Harry Potter.
Godric's Hollow was a forgotten village, sparse of people since the Potter incident. The streets were empty but for a few drunks stumbling along their ditches. Not a soul had noticed Harry apparate onto the main road. He felt like a ghost seeking more of his own kind.
He was alone in a place he had never visited, even if it did seem so very familiar to him. It fit his life—pitted and worn and spit on. He knew that this was the right road.
Draco stumbled out of the pub, not so much drunk as wallowing in self pity. A pretty blonde hung off of his arm, begging for him to take her home, but he only brushed her off coldly. She pouted, retracing her steps back inside the half-empty pub where the gentlemen were more willing.
Draco grimaced as he held himself up against the slimy brick wall and pushed himself toward the alley. Where the hell was the main road in this god-forsaken village, anyhow? He stumbled halfway down the alley and landed in what he hoped was simply a puddle of grimy water.
He didn't bother pulling himself up. He was already a disgrace--what could potential feces do to hurt his reputation? His parents wouldn't even allow him back in the manor for the bloody holidays! It was that stupid muggle's fault! It she hadn't looked so damned defenseless, he could have offed her easily. That's all he had to do, kill one filthy little muggle.
"Kill her, Draco," his father had hissed, pushing the wand into his hand. "You only have to kill one right now, Draco. We will not ask you to kill the rest of them. Just this one, son. That is all. . ."
But Draco had lost his nerve. Sure, Draco wasn't publicly disowned, and he still had plenty of money in a separate bank account, but that wasn't the point. He had dishonored his family. There was no way he could make it up to them. . .no possible way.
Draco heard a pop from the end of the alley. He looked up and saw his way back into the Malfoy family: Harry Potter on a silver platter. There stood the Gryffindor Golden Boy, alone on a dimly lit road without his friends or guard or even his defenses up.
Draco smiled to himself. Perhaps his luck was returning.
Harry sped up. He was close, he knew, but where to go from here? He'd reached a fork in the road. He had only two choices.
"Left or right," Harry whispered. "Right or wrong."
Harry sat down on the crossroads. This was where they hung criminals when they didn't want their souls to wander, Harry thought dimly. This is where they put me when I survived that night. I'm lost. A lost soul, and I've never wanted anyone to find me before. How could I have been so stupid as to not come here earlier?
Harry had thought on that very subject many times before. Why hadn't anyone every brought him back to Godric's Hollow? Perhaps, they knew that this was the one place that could give him what he needed to defeat Voldemort; however, they probably believed that special something was rage—fuel to the fire and passion to kill the dark wizard. But Harry knew that that was not what his mother had saved him with and that he would never be able to defeat Voldemort with anger alone. Rage was simply not strong enough.
Harry knew because he had tried rage. He had let it control him and all it did was weaken him. He had hurt those around him and accomplished nothing. He was a failure--but not for long, he promised himself. He would fix this. Even if he have to do it alone.
Draco slithered along, using the shadows to hide himself from sight. He halted beside the last store building. Harry was up ahead, stopped, sitting in fact. He was at a crossroad. Why couldn't he choose a side already? Draco sneered. Right or left, Potter.
I could have chose, the Slytherin thought. Then he stopped, thinking of something else entirely. I did choose. I chose. But did I go the right way?
Draco frowned; he didn't like having to think this way. It was stupid, something a Gryffindor would think about, not a Slytherin. But still the question stayed with him.
The young man crossed his arms in the winter chill. There was an easy way to stop himself from having such thoughts, he knew. He could just go ahead and turn Potter in to the Death Eaters. That way this whole ordeal would be over, and he could go back to living his life. His father would take him back. The Dark Lord would accept him, too.
That would mean choosing. He could do it. After all, he wasn't bloody Harry Potter—he didn't have trouble in that area.
Or did he?
He pushed the thought aside and reasoned with himself. He would wait. He would see what Potter was there for. Then, when he knew, he would send for his father. Then Harry Potter would be out of the picture and his world would go back to the way it was.
Harry chose. He went to the left. He didn't know if he'd made the right decision, only that it had to be made. And if he was wrong? Well, then he'd just have to go back to the crossroads and fix that little error because he wasn't giving up. No way, no how. Harry was here for a reason.
He was going to find his secret weapon.
With that thought, an explosive light shot from behind his eyes. Pain radiated from his scar. He stumbled to the ground, clasping his head in agony.
Harry cried out, but he knew that no one could hear him. He bit his lip, trying to keep himself in check. Voldemort knows where I am, he thought. He's trying to stop me. I must be doing something right.
He pushed himself forward on his hands and knees, crawling toward his destination. He needed to reach his home. He needed to find that place at all costs. He shook as the ravaging pain took him again, but he remained conscious.
They were relying on him. The world needed him to move. He needed to defeat Voldemort.
Harry pulled himself up off of the ground, clearing his mind like Professor Snape had tried to teach him. The pain was still there but it was hidden somewhere in the shadows. He walked forward.
Then he saw it. A heap of ashes, a collapsed roof crushing folded walls, glass, and a standing door frame. He saw home. Home because that was where his parents had been when they had given their lives for him.
Tears came to Harry's eyes. He ran toward the remains of the house and stood before them. Then he stepped through the blackened door frame.
This was his weapon, the only one he ever needed.
Draco stopped, crouched down in the shadow of a huge tree. He watched Potter collapse to the ground in pain. He witnessed the young man rising. Then he saw Harry Potter cry.
Draco was confused. Wasn't this where famous Potter was supposed to pull some sacred weapon from the ashes and declare a duel with the Dark Lord? What was wrong with him? Why was he so upset over a bunch of burnt wood?
Then he saw Potter walk into the collapsed house and get on his knees. He was sobbing. He was talking, addressing his parents in fact.
Didn't Potter know that he was alone?
Potter was alone.
It was time to choose.
Draco pulled out his wand, pointing it toward the young man. He waited. He wondered how best to contact his father. He thought that perhaps he should bind Potter first, then wait for the others to show up. Or perhaps he could . . .
The young man stopped. He put his wand back in his pocket. Attacking a defenseless person would not prove him to even the Dark Lord, he reasoned. He would simply have to think of some other way to get back into his parent's favor.
Next time he would chose differently, he was sure. But until then . . .
Draco turned, heading back down the path. He wondered what on the right side of the crossroads.