A/N: This series will be my attempt at taking the Potterverse as JKR had created it following Prisoner of Azkaban, and altering it in one way. Harry will be more aware of himself and those around him. Just by adding some minor powers of observation many things will change for Harry and his friends. This story will share scenarios from Canon, but how individual characters react will change based off of Harry's personal reactions. So in short Harry Potter is the sun and everyone else is the moon. Ex: Yes Tri-wizard tournament will still take place, but things will happen significantly different in the various tasks with potentially different contestants.
Ships: the beginnings of H/Hr, N/G, and RL/NT
Disclaimer: This universe is of JKR's creation and ownership, not mine. I do not claim any ownership of her universe, but I do like to take artistic license with it.
Harry Potter had to admit that in many ways his first week at the Dursleys following his third year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry that the peace and relative quiet afforded in Little Whinging was exactly what he needed. In many ways, the past year had been the best in his life. He found out more about his parents, discovered the truth about his parents' betrayal, and saved his godfather in the process. Only one thing would have made the year more fulfilling, if Sirius had been freed and allowed to carry through on his promise of asking Harry to live with him.
If the Dursleys allowed him one thing it was an abundance of time to think as he did the mindless chores of the household and garden outside. Harry realized something very important about his first three years at Hogwarts, muddling his way through an adventure with Hermione and Ron would be a lot safer and easier if he had only paid attention more.
First year, he realized that his scar hurt when both Quirrel and Snape had been near, but he had assumed it was Snape and discounted the possibility of Quirrel. His assumption of Snape without paying attention to all of the signs had nearly cost him his life at the end of the year. Note to self don't make any stupid assumptions based upon your emotions alone.
Second year, if he had helped Hermione more in searching for the monster she likely would have been spared petrification. Likewise, just keeping his eyes open he would have seen the telltale signs of exhaustion from Ginny Weasley and perhaps known to keep a closer eye on her. Keep his eyes open for strange behavior and be wary of potential threats.
The past year, he would have noticed Hermione's use of the time turner without too much difficulty if only he had paid attention. Malfoy wouldn't have been attacked by Buckbeak if he had been paying attention, which only added the strain of the hippogriffs trial and subsequent rescue that fateful night. Seeing Peter Pettigrew's name on the map should have been more of a source of concern, and realizing it was a full moon could have meant that Sirius was free at the moment instead of on the run in god knows what place. Being aware of the circumstances helps a lot when dealing with very important things.
With this in mind Harry vowed to keep his eyes open and brain working to avoid the mistakes of the past. It has been the favorite saying of one of his teachers at Muggle School, "Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it." Harry now realized the wisdom of the statement and vowed that in his life being blind to the obvious wouldn't happen any more.
With all of this in mind, it had only been about ten days since his return from Hogwarts and as he sat in the back garden of his relatives' house he realized he wanted to write a few letters to his friends and clear the air.
Harry was broken from his thoughts as his Aunt Petunia screeched, "Potter, once you're finished pruning the rose bed come inside and help me cook dinner."
Harry's own stomach rumbled as he thought of dinner, he could only hope that Vernon and Dudley would leave him some food on the table once they were finished with their troughs. Harry chuckled at the thought before he dusted his hands off as he inspected his work. With an appraising nod he headed back to the house through the back door to help his Aunt Petunia to cook dinner.
After watching the Dursleys eat all of the food aside from a few pieces of bread and some pudding, Harry eagerly sat down and ate the leftovers from the meal before he sat about doing the dishes. By the time Harry had completely finished his hands were sore from a full day of work in the garden and the house. Petunia screamed from the living room as the Dursleys were watching a commercial during their favorite program, "Potter, once you're done with the dishes go up to your room Vernon doesn't want to see your face any more today."
Harry frowned and muttered under his breath, "The feeling is mutual you lard ass." Harry stomped up the stairs and slammed the door to his room behind him, feeling quite sick and tired of one Vernon Dursley.
Harry sat down heavily on his small bed before he sat up and grabbed a couple of pieces of parchment so that he could begin writing to his friends. His first letter was the longer one and it was to Hermione:
Man it has been a strange summer already. The Dursleys have been a little bit better, and I've even found the time to do some of my summer homework. Although I still might need your help with my potions essay.
You always complain to Ron and me about not writing enough during the summer, so this letter is my way of making it up to you a little. I've been thinking a lot the past few days and I realized I never really thanked you for being such a good friend. Ron and I would be rubbish without you, and I'm sorry I haven't done everything I could to show you that. I'm sorry for being so rude about the firebolt thing. It's just that it was the first time I ever got a gift from someone with no strings attached. I appreciate all of the gifts I've gotten from you and the Weasleys, but you're supposed to get gifts for friends, you know? The firebolt was, I don't know, different because of that.
I'm sure that this probably doesn't make any sense but I just wanted to try to explain it to you. I wouldn't have fought you on it if you had told me before taking the broom. I really didn't fancy another fall from a broom either. Anyways, if you write me back I promise to reply as soon as Hedwig is up to making the delivery.
Hope you're having a good summer,
After he read through the letter Harry rolled the parchment up and tied it snugly before he began his letter to Ron:
Hey mate, how is your summer going? Probably not as exciting as your trip to Egypt last summer I wager. I just wanted to write and say hi and maybe share a talk about Quidditch for this next season. Fred and George told me that you thought about trying out for Wood's spot next year. If you do that would be wicked mate. With me at seeker, Fred and George at beater, the girls at chaser and you at keeper we'd definitely win the cup. Well, write me back when you get a chance mate.
Hedwig took the owl treat from Harry's hand as he tied the two letters to Hedwig's leg and murmured to his friend, "Take the letter to Ron first Hedwig. You don't need to wait for a reply from him. But, please wait to see if Hermione wants to write back ok?" Hedwig nipped at his fingers affectionately before she took off into the night sky headed towards Ottery St. Catchpole and the burrow.
Three days passed before Hedwig returned, Harry had already received a quick response from Ron that vaguely mentioned something about the Quidditch World Cup. Hermione's letter on the other hand was considerably more loaded.
Oh, I'm so happy to hear from you, even if you are writing out of obligation (not that you were). Apparently we aren't really going on a vacation this year; because my mum and dad told me that the Weasley's had contacted them about something at the end of August that you and I were invited to.
You never have to thank me for being your friend Harry, but I appreciate it nonetheless. I understand why you were so upset now about the firebolt and I don't blame you one bit, now Ron on the other hand will probably never apologize for being wrong about that and "Scabbers". Why I put up with that boy sometimes, I'll never know.
I'm so proud of you normally you put off your summer homework until we get to Hogwarts. I promise I'll help with your potions essay, it is rather tricky.
Just imagine what you can do with all of the spare time at the beginning of the year without any homework to do. Maybe you can even start looking for a girlfriend to pass some time. I know a lot of girls that fancy you including a certain Weasley, and no I don't mean Ron.
If you want, write me back soon and we'll keep in touch over the entire summer. If you'd like I'll even proofread your homework if you send it with Hedwig. If not I'll see you later this summer at the burrow for whatever it is we're doing.
Harry smiled upon finishing his reading and made a mental note to write Hermione and Ron back in a couple of days. He looked around his room and with a start realized that it was Tuesday meaning that he had a day off from chores.
With a grunt Harry rolled out of bed and headed towards the shower, determined to do something constructive with his day off from servitude at the Dursleys. After he finished his shower Harry frowned as he looked at his baggy clothes in the mirror before his eyes widened with a thought. Harry rushed back to his room and pleaded with Hedwig to take a letter to Hermione after he had taken his measurements from a small sewing kit his Aunt Petunia had given him so that he could hold Dudley's old clothes together. As Hedwig flew out the window Harry began phase two of his plan to accomplish something for the summer.
Harry found a tattered pair of sweat paints to go with an old tank top from his "new" clothes pile and laced up his beat up trainers before jogging down the stairs and outside to get some exercise in lieu of anything better to do.
Harry took off down the street and waved at Ms. Figg, who was out on a walk with her cats, as he passed. Harry was well aware that Dudley, or 'Big D' as he was called, was with his gang down at the park so he went in the opposite direction to avoid a confrontation. Harry crossed Wisteria Walk and turned left away from the park and towards Magnolia road starting to sweat already from exertion. Fortunately, Hermione lived in Kensington, which wasn't more than a two hour flight for Hedwig meaning he would at least have some idea of what Hermione's response would be.
By the time Harry had finished his run he returned to Privet Drive tired but rather happy from the exercise induced endorphins coursing through his body. So Harry was quite surprised when he entered Number 4 and his Aunt Petunia stiffly said, "You have a phone call from a girl."
Harry nodded and took the phone before he uncertainly said, "Hello?"
The soft soprano of Hermione greeted him on the other line with a rush, "Honestly Harry you never told us that the Dursleys allege you go to, what was it, St. Brutus?"
Harry shrugged to himself before he asked, "Um, I'm guessing that wasn't what you wanted to talk about." Hermione snorted in response and Harry continued, "I'm guessing you got my letter then?"
Harry could feel Hermione roll her eyes all the way in Kensington before she replied, "Of course I received your letter Harry. I was just wondering if you had any preferences."
Harry snorted as he glanced around before he replied, "Hermione you've seen my clothes, do you think I have a preference aside from fitting."
Hermione's scribbling could be heard across the line before she asked, "Would you like a mixture of muggle and magical clothes Harry?"
Harry hummed the affirmative before he replied, "I need enough clothes for say three weeks of classes both magical and muggle. When I see you at the burrow I'll pay you then."
Hermione shifted gears and softly commented, "It really is nice to hear from you this summer. Maybe you could come visit me before the end of the summer?"
Harry shrugged and replied, "I reckon your parents would need to talk to the Dursleys about that. Merlin knows the house would fall to pieces without me."
Hermione giggled, which was a lovely sound, before she replied, "Oh Harry, I'm sure they make do without you during the school year."
Harry grumbled, "Oh great ruin my delusions why don't you."
Hermione laughed and replied, "Ok Harry I need to go, but I'll ask my mum and dad if you can maybe visit a weekend around your birthday."
Harry smiled and said, "That sounds great Hermione. Um, just send Hedwig back when you're done with her. She rather enjoys flying around compared to being locked in her cage all summer."
Hermione softly replied, "Ok Harry, it was nice talking to you."
Harry smiled and said, "Bye."
Harry heard her soft, "Bye" as he hung the phone up and headed up to the bathroom to wash up before he had to help make dinner for Vernon and Dudders once again. Once Harry had finished cleaning up he walked into the kitchen where his Aunt Petunia was watching him in a curious way. She finally managed to croak, "Was that girl full of that freakish business?"
Harry smiled slightly and replied, "She's a muggleborn witch like my mum was, and the brightest witch of her age to boot. She asked if I could visit later this summer around my birthday."
Petunia appeared to be fighting a battle with herself before she asked, "Is she your girlfriend?"
Harry frowned and replied, "No, she is my best friend though. I don't think I'm ready to have a girlfriend yet." Harry smiled sweetly and asked, "How about Dudley, does he have a girlfriend yet?"
Petunia shook her head and replied, "No he doesn't, but his doctor is forcing him on a diet starting tonight. So we'll be making a salad with no cheese, and only juice to drink with it."
Harry shrugged and pulled the salad tongs out of the drawer nearest to the sink and began to toss the concoction Petunia had put together. Harry could only wryly think that this would be the first time in his memory that he would get his fair share of a meal.
Meanwhile in Kensington, Hermione Granger was being interrogated by her mother who had overheard her daughter's half of the conversation with Harry on the phone.
"Hermione Jane, I really would like to get to know your friend Harry; but, only if you come clean with me first sweetheart. How do you feel about Harry?"
Hermione blushed slightly as she looked down at her feet before she murmured, "Harry's my best friend and I like him a lot."
Bianca Granger looked a lot like her daughter with curly chocolate brown hair that had tamed with age, and she smiled tenderly at her daughter before she cupped her daughter's chin and tilted her face up until their eyes locked and she said, "So, you're hoping if Harry and you get some time alone he might realize if he has any feelings for you?"
Hermione nodded but added, "Even if Harry isn't looking for a girlfriend right now, I'd still like to do something nice for his birthday."
Bianca smiled and said, "Once your father gets home will discuss it and see if we can invite Harry over for a week around his birthday. If I remember correctly it was July thirty-first." Hermione nodded and her mother continued, "I'm sure we can manage something in time for that. Now, what is this about clothes shopping for Harry?"
Meanwhile back in Little Whinging Dudley and Vernon Dursley stormed through the front door of Number 4 Privet Drive with their thoughts on steak and other succulent delights that the freak and Petunia had made for them.
Vernon and Dudley sat heavily into their seats and Harry could hear the poor wooden chairs creak from the strain. When Petunia brought the salad into the dining room Vernon's moustache began twitching before he asked, "Petunia darling where is the rest of the food?"
Petunia stiffly replied, "I received a call from Dudder's doctor today and he recommended a diet to lower his cholesterol levels. I figured we could diet together as a family to show our support."
Vernon's moustache twitched a few more times before he glanced over at his large son and he nodded before he fake cheerfully said, "Of course anything for our Dudders. We'll have the girls banging down the front door to get to you soon enough."
At the mention of girls Petunia glanced over to Harry before she said, "Harry received a phone call from a girl today. Harry indicated they might invite him over for a week later this summer."
Vernon grunted as he sniffed his salad as Dudley cackled before he said, "A girl called Harry eh, she must really be an ugly cow then."
Harry's eyes narrowed and he replied, "Hermione is actually quite pretty, but she's only my best friend. Unlike you Dudley I could have a girlfriend if I wanted one."
Dudley pouted before Vernon merely pointed to the stairs and Harry's room. With a smirk Harry speared one last Roma tomato from his salad and popped it into his mouth before he strutted up the stairs suddenly feeling much better about things.
Harry went to sleep later that night and was drifting into an interesting dream with said best friend when his body stiffened as his dream shifted to something far more sinister. Harry felt like he was slithering on the ground as a snake when he stopped outside of the window of a house and overheard, "This weather is murder on my knee. I swear one of these days I am going to retire to the Caribbean." The old man looked at a picture over his mantle before he sadly muttered, "Oh Frank Bryce you old fool what have you done to yourself." Catching a reflection on the frame of the picture he hobble over to his window only to see a light on in the house he was a caretaker at.
Frank's eyes narrowed before he darkly muttered, "Damn teenagers making googly eyes again. Well we'll see about that."
Harry followed at a distance as he slithered behind old Frank as he marched up a slope to an old manor of some sort. Frank pulled on the door only to find it still locked. With a baffled expression he pulled a key from his pocket and pulled the door open before storming in not bothering to shut the door behind him. Harry slithered in behind Frank and followed at a distance in the dark and very old building. Frank was hobbling up the stairs towards the only room with a light on in it. As Frank closed in on the room he glanced in as two older men appeared to be having a conversation with an unseen third man in a chair faced away from the door.
With a start Harry slithered into view of the room and recognized one of the men as Wormtail, the rat responsible for Sirius' time in jail and his parent's deaths. The other man appeared to be a little bit younger but not much as he had a thin moustache and slicked black hair. Harry slithered past the caretaker and entered the room before approaching the chair to reveal the very same face Harry had seen one other time, on the back of Professor Quirrel's head. But this time the face was on an infant's body with beady red eyes. Voldemort shrilly said, "It appears Nagini has followed the old muggle caretaker into the house. Wormtail turn my chair so I can properly greet my guest." Voldemort sneered as he uttered, "Avada Kedavra."
The door swung open as Harry watched a green light flash into the hallway followed by the dull thump of a falling body. Harry slithered back into the hallway before Voldemort's voice called out, "No my pet, leave his body. If he comes up missing, the muggles will search here for a body. Wormtail, take the muggle back to his shack and leave him in a chair."
Harry jolted awoke as his scar throbbed painfully reminding him terribly of the sinus headaches he had when he was much younger and in a cupboard for his whimpering. Touching his scar gingerly Harry pondered his dream for a moment before writing down everything he remembered. Just as Harry sat his quill down a tapping at the window brought him over to find a tropical bird of some sort carrying a letter from someone.
Harry frowned as he took the letter and gave the bird one of Hedwig's treats which it promptly spit out before once again taking flight. Harry untied the parchment and read:
As you can tell by the messenger I am somewhere where the sun shines every day. Bucky sends his greetings also. I wish I could be there with you, but remember that I am always with you in spirit if nothing else. I have contacted Dumbledore and he assures me he is working on a way to keep me closer to you. If you ever need anything, or just someone to talk to please write me Harry. I don't know how you feel about Hermione or any other girls for that matter but you'd be surprised how much experience I have with girls. I know you are getting to that age where the opposite sex becomes really interesting so please, if you need some advice write. I care about you kiddo and I don't want to see you hurt.
Harry sat down heavily in his bed feeling happy at Sirius' letter but dread from the events he saw in his dream. Harry pulled out his Divination text book and checked on various kinds of dreams. Unsurprisingly Harry realized his dream wasn't really a dream at all. In fact, Harry thought there was no way it wasn't linked to his scar. Looking longingly at his pillow but realizing there was no way he could sleep the rest of the night, Harry waited for Hedwig to return from her Nocturnal hunting so that he could write a letter to Hermione and see if she could find some of the answers he was desperately seeking.
A/N: This is a new story, with a different bend than Canon. I don't think it will be terribly AU or that the characters will be terribly OOC. Things will obviously change and Harry will be a bit stouter and more assured. His relationship with Hermione will help a lot with that, but like I said we won't actually have a full blown H/Hr ship until the end of fourth year or the beginning of fifth year.
I will be taking this all of the way to the end along with my other two series. Three different plots going at once should keep my plenty busy writing for the foreseeable future in my spare time.
On a final note I promised I would inform all of you of a new Harry Potter fanfiction and just plain fanfiction site at You'll find some familiar names there and an interesting take on the fanfiction experience. I hope you all check it out and enjoy. Thanks to all of you that are reading and please review!!!