A/N: In the reality we know, Lily Potter found the Blood Bond spell and cast it on Harry, saving him from Voldemort. Ever since I wrote "Bonds of Blood and Love", I've thought about that spell and all the ways it could have gone. Here is another possible reality.
A/N; Revised: I had a lot of time to read over the things I had written while my laptop was dead, and I am doing a minor rewrite of the entire story. Most of you may not even notice the changes, but they seem important to me. Most of them are clarifications of things the characters did or want, while some correct errors I made, such as having Fudge as the Minister of Magic during the first Voldemort War. This first chapter will only have one or two minor things, although later chapters will have more extreme rewrites.
Harry Potter and The Bonds of Blood.
Beginnings and Endings.
OoOoOoO The Fourteenth of October, 1981. OoOoOoO
Lily Potter stared at the old book she'd found in the Potter library with a thoughtful frown. This spell had definite possibilities in case something drastic happened to James and her. She marked the spell and went over her notes again. Yes, it was perfect, except for one thing. It was an amazingly difficult spell, and while Lily was smarter than most, and gifted at charms, this spell was beyond her power to cast. She hated to admit there was anything she couldn't do, but she was also smart enough to know when she'd reached her limits, and this spell was beyond them.
Every Witch and Wizard had limits. James had far more magic to use than Lily did, and both of them were stronger than Peter. Remus was as stronger as Lily, but weaker than Sirius. Sirius was almost as strong as James. She smiled. Sirius was stronger, but he'd been an indifferent student at best, and she knew far more spells than he'd ever thought of.
She considered it and sighed. She looked at the clock on the wall and nodded to herself. James would be back soon, if Sirius didn't talk him into just one more round at the pub, and she didn't think that would happen again after the curse she'd hexed Sirius with the last time he'd done that.
She smiled fondly at the memory of Sirius running around wildly, locked in his Animagus form until the Mange she'd inflicted on him ran its course and he was a bald dog. It usually took Sirius three or four months to forget one of her lessons and it had only been six weeks since that incident.
As if her thoughts had conjured them, she heard the boys come in downstairs and she smiled. From the sound of it, James and Sirius were trying to get Remus to do something sneaky again. She stood up and crossed to the cradle in the corner. Harry was still sleeping, although the way he was stirring meant that he'd be waking soon.
She smiled again, and if the men downstairs had seen that smile, they would have been finding things to do out of Lily's sight until whatever idea she had come up with went away.
The Marauders were dedicated pranksters. They would fiddle with a prank, working on it until it was perfect before they tried it out, but Lily was the opposite. She would think of a prank and pull it right away. If she couldn't pull it off soon, she'd simply forget about it, unless something brought it back to mind when she could pull it off.
She took one last look at Harry and smiled. This was going to be so much fun. She went downstairs, schooling her face into stern lines. She entered the kitchen of Godric's Hollow, where the boys were sitting around the table. "Gentlemen," she said, fiercely but quietly, "I just got Harry to sleep for the first time today and if one of you wake him, I will do things to that person that he will not forget, ever."
She glared at them all and turned sharply, leaving them staring at the doorway she'd been in. She stopped and cast the spell even James didn't know about, that allowed her to hear any conversation that went on in the house. She had gotten the idea for it at Hogwarts, when she realized that the only way the Headmaster could know half of the things he did was to have a spell like that.
She hadn't been able to find the exact spell that the headmaster used, but this one she'd created worked well enough for her. She listened to the boys.
"Prongs, it's a pity we didn't know Lily well enough to get her to become an Animagus with us. We could have used a tiger a few times," Remus was saying.
Sirius snorted. "And the only reason she would have been a tiger is because nobody can become a Dragon." Lily smiled, until Sirius finished his statement. "She'd be a great Dragon. Moody, irritable and violent when upset."
Lily could almost hear the smile in James' voice. "And right behind you."
"WHAT!?" yelped Sirius and the next sound was his chair falling over as he tried to spin around and stand up at the same time. "Lily, I didn't."
Lily smiled as young Harry started crying, at the most perfect time. She took a deep breath. "Sirius! I'm going to."
She stopped as the crack of an Apparation sounded. She marched into the room, schooling her features into anger. Remus and James had their hands over their mouths and were trying to hold in the laughter that threatened to escape with every second.
They froze at the look on her face, eyeing the wand in her hand warily. "So you think it's funny, do you," she said in a voice of pure sugar. James blinked several times and groaned, the laughter gone.
"I'm going to go upstairs and see Harry," he said in a rush, edging around her without turning his back on her. She listened to him run up the stairs and looked at the third person sitting there. "Is something funny, Remus?" she asked sweetly.
Remus Lupin looked at Lily and noted something James had missed, not because he didn't know Lily, but because he was so in love with her. Lily had that little twitch at the corner of her left eye that meant she was only holding down laughter by sheer will. Plus, to be honest, James and Sirius didn't have the enhanced senses of a Werewolf, and couldn't tell that Lily didn't smell angry.
He smiled at her. "Yes, I have to say that the way you have those two, the twin terrors of Gryffindor, wrapped around your slightest whim is funnier than anything we ever pulled."
Lily stared at him for a minute and smiled. "I do my best," she said modestly.
"And quite good it is," Remus said with a smile.
Lily turned to go upstairs and give James a proper hello and then stopped. She looked at Remus. "You're not going to give my secret away, are you?"
Remus grinned and some of the premature ageing brought on by the Werewolf transformations seemed to fall away, making him look his real age. "Ruin this prank? Not on your life and for two reasons. First, I'm going to enjoy the looks on their faces when they finally figure out how you've played them and second, I'm not stupid enough to ruin your fun. You'd make me a bald Werewolf or something and I can live without that, thank you."
Lily smiled sweetly at Remus. "Please, I am far more creative than to use the same prank twice. You'd be a glowing neon pink, or maybe green and silver."
Remus' jaw dropped. "You wouldn't really make me a Slytherin, would you?" he asked weakly.
Lily just smiled and started up the stairs. Her spell to hear things in the house was still active and she smiled to herself at Remus' quiet mutter. "That is an evil, evil woman."
OoOoOoO The Sixteenth of October, 1981. OoOoOoO
Two days later, Lily had her notes in order and her arguments marshalled. She made James a good dinner and waited until he was done before broaching the subject. She had barely begun speaking when he stopped her. "Love, will this protect Harry if something happens to us?"
She nodded mutely. James shrugged. "Then I'll do it. I trust you to know exactly what the spell will do and what it will cost. Are you prepared to pay the price?"
Lily looked away. "I can't. I'm not strong enough," she said bitterly.
James shook his head. "That's not what I meant. If you could cast this spell, would I even be hearing about it?"
Lily nodded. "Of course you would. Right after I finished casting it."
James grinned at her. "I thought so, you Slytherin, you. If you're that sure of it, we'll do it. When would be good for you?"
Lily looked at the moon. "In two days it will be the full moon and Remus and Sirius will both be away on Order business. That would be a great time to do it."
James nodded. "Since I only have two days, let's go over the spell right now and tomorrow, I'll study it in earnest."
Lily looked at James curiously. "Why start tomorrow?"
James pulled Lily into his lap. "Because I have this desire to find out what whim I'm wrapped around tonight," he said, kissing the side of her neck, and counting down from ten. He'd reached two when Lily pulled away, and he smiled to himself for judging her so accurately.
Lily let him do it for a minute, enjoying the touch of her husband. She pulled back and stared at him. "How long have you known what I was doing?" she demanded, seeing the gleam in his eye. "And how did you know what Remus said to me, anyway?"
James sighed in mock sadness. "Lily, what did I do for three years before you consented to go with me to Hogsmeade?"
Lily smiled. "You watched me, trying to get my attention, a date and a smile or two."
"I know your look better than anyone. I spent long enough watching you. I don't need to see the little twitch you get at the corner of your eye to know when you're playing games. It's in every line of your body." James grinned then, a boyish expression that made him look five years younger. "And since I spend most of my time watching those lines," he said, with a smirk.
Lily blushed and slapped his arm gently. "Stop that. Why haven't you told Sirius?"
James smiled at something only he could see. "Because in first year Sirius and I made a bet about which of us who be the first to prank the other and not get caught. If I can keep this charade going for another few days, until Halloween, I'll win that bet." James looked serious for a minute. "Plus, laughing about the way you have us wrapped around your finger is amusing Remus no end, and he has so few moments of true humour in his life." James started to brood about his friend with the curse when Lily grabbed him by the ears and kissed him very seriously indeed.
He looked at her and saw a look he'd only seen since they were married, one that always set his blood to pounding. "James," she paused suddenly, cocking her head to one side, and James sighed.
She'd thought of another question she wanted answered, and that would always side track her from anything else. "How did you know about that 'wrapped around my whim' comment, anyway? I was in the kitchen with Remus, and you were upstairs with Harry." Lily waited, watching him.
James looked at her innocently. "Lucky guess?" he offered brightly.
Lily bent down and nipped gently at his ear, raising the pressure of a certain portion of his anatomy considerably, especially after she wiggled a few times. "James, there are two outcomes to this game. One has us going upstairs and playing more games," and she nipped his ear again, "and the second has you sleeping on the couch. You are smart enough to figure out which one includes you telling me what I want to know." She wiggled again, pressing against him and settling herself into him again, causing his breath to catch and his pressure to rise again.
Since James wasn't sure how much more pressure he could take without exploding, he confessed. "I noticed a few months ago that you seemed to be as bad as Professor Dumbledore about knowing everything that anyone said in the house and figured out that you must have a spell that allowed you to hear things when you weren't in the room, so one afternoon when you were out baby shopping, I cast a spell the Marauders found in our third year, that duplicates the effects of any spell you cast on yourself on me."
Lily smiled at James and that look was back. She kissed him again and leaned back just enough to run her hands over his chest. "Mr. Potter, if you would take me upstairs, I'm going to do things to your person that you will not forget, ever."
OoOoOoO Two days later, The Eighteenth of October, 1981. OoOoOoO
Lily stared at James, watching as he finished the spell. Between the potion and casting this ritual, James had been using an amazing amount of magic and he was showing the strain. Lily was fretting, something she did quite well, as the ritual neared its end. He was almost done, both magically and with the ritual. If he faltered, the ritual was wasted, and there wouldn't be another chance for it to be done again until after the end of the year, simply because it would take that long to make more of the potion, and it was past mid October now.
She sighed as James cast the final bit of the spell, and gave Harry the last drop of the potion that they had shared during the ritual. They both glowed for a second, a deep azure blue that shone with an inner light before it faded into their skin and Lily smiled, a great fear falling away from her. Voldemort had been very active recently, and they had already had more than a dozen encounters with his followers, including three with Voldemort himself.
That they had lived this long was equal parts her mind, James' daring and large bits of luck, and Lily was not going to put Harry's life in the hands of luck.
She crossed to them and summoned James' favourite chair from the corner it had been pushed into so they would have room for this working. James slumped into the chair, still cradling Harry gently. Lily took Harry and sat in James' lap, cuddling Harry, who was protesting the taste of the potion he'd been fed.
Lily undid her robe and gave him a better tasting potion to drink. She watched him nurse with a small smile playing about her lips, the smile of a woman who knows her children are as safe as she can make them.
James sighed, resting his head on the back of the chair. "That was the most intense bit of magic I've ever cast. I think I'll call in sick tomorrow."
"Already taken care of, love. We are, at this moment, on detached duty for a week, because I need you to help me break some wards on a Dark Book, that might belong to Voldemort."
James tilted his head so he could see Lily without raising his head from the back of the chair. "Do you have a book of his?" he asked curiously.
Lily smiled. "No, but I do have one of the Black family books that Sirius brought me. I told Sirius that I would forget about him waking Harry the other night if he would bring me the Darkest, most cursed book he could find." She frowned and shifted Harry to the other breast to nurse, an event watched by his father with interest and a touch of envy. "It says things I don't even want to think about, that all he had to do was go home to get the darkest book he could find. What kind of people are his folks, anyway?"
James sighed, closing his eyes again. "Sirius' folks are as Dark as any, the worst sort of Wizards, lost in fantasies of Pureblood dominion and Wizard supremacy."
Lily snickered. "Here's an idea. Let's lock my sister and her husband in a room with Sirius' parents and let them talk for a week or so."
James was too tired to do more than smile at that thought. "We'd have to take their wands away, and make sure Dursley didn't have a Muggle weapon on him, or there would be a death in minutes."
Lily frowned, but had to admit he was probably right. "Now, since you and Harry both need to sleep, what say we go upstairs and get to bed?"
James looked at the stairs and then at Lily. "Can't I just stay here and sleep? This chair is very comfortable."
Lily shrugged nonchalantly. "If you really want to, I guess you can," she said as she got up and started toward the stairs. "I'm going to wait exactly ten minutes, and then I'm going to cancel the warming charm on the oil, get back into my nightgown and go to sleep, unless you're in bed with me before that time."
James thought about A. sleeping in the chair, or B., a hot oil massage and a nude Lily for nearly one whole second before he was out of the chair and headed upstairs. He did have to go back once when Lily's voice came floating downstairs. "James Potter, don't you dare leave clothing on the floor."
James turned around and picked up his robes from where he'd just shrugged them off. Even with that delay, he beat Lily into the bedroom, and was laying on his stomach when she came in after putting Harry down.
She slipped out of her nightgown, only to find that James has fallen asleep already. She smiled and brought the hot oil to the side of the bed. She had promised him a rub, after all, even if he wouldn't remember it in the morning.
It took Lily less than two days to crack the curses around the book Sirius had brought her, and the next five days they stayed home and played, letting the worries of the Voldemort war and everything outside of the house fall away from them for that short period of time.
Sirius and Remus came over a couple of times, and Peter Pettigrew came by once, but the three of them seemed to recognize that James and Lily wanted some private time and their visits were short.
Their short stay in paradise ended with a visit from Albus Dumbledore on the twenty-fifth. He told them to be careful, and to check on Sirius, the Secret Keeper of their Fidelius Charm. "Voldemort has some new information, that may lead to you becoming a specific target," he said quietly. "I would rather he had never heard this bit of news, but nothing can be done about that now."
James and Lily looked at each other and James shook his head. Professor Dumbledore didn't have to know that they'd secretly switched their Secret Keeper at the last minute, as a double bluff and feint.
With Remus Lupin, Werewolf, easily capable of defending himself and Sirius Black, every bit as capable as Remus and far more ruthless available as Secret Keepers, who would ever believe they'd choose the weakest one of them all, the only one that was even weaker magically than Lily?
Professor Dumbledore had another comment to make. "I would suggest that until we find the leak in the Order of the Phoenix, it might be better for you to stay in Godric's Hollow for a few more days."
Albus Dumbledore caught the smile that James and Lily shared at that and his eyes began twinkling. "I see you're disappointed in that," he said with a straight face.
The Potters smiled in tandem. "Oh, absolutely heartbroken," James said, putting on his best innocent look, the one that hadn't fooled anyone that knew him in years. Lily just shook her head and picked up Harry.
Albus Dumbledore left shortly after that, looking back once as he passed the Anti-Apparation wards. "Be safe," he murmured and Disapparated to go see the Longbottoms.
It would be the last time he ever saw the Potters as a family.
OoOoOoO Halloween, The Thirty-first of October, 1981. OoOoOoO
James was a little disappointed about not taking Harry out on Halloween night, but Lily made it up to him with a special dinner and long hot bath together after Harry was sleeping.
They had just finished, and they were in James' favourite chair just cuddling and talking quietly when they felt the Fidelius Charm break. Amid the sounds of multiple Apparations they stared at each other, one thought in their mind. Peter had betrayed them.
Lily jumped up. "Go cast the last spell," she said, pulling her wand. "Hurry!"
James hesitated, and Lily kissed him, pushing him toward the stairs. "Go, or everything you did is for nothing!"
James ran upstairs and into the bedroom where Harry lay sleeping in his cradle. Casting the final spell to seal the Blood Bond was an instant's work and he turned, determined to join Lily when he heard the front door break and Lily's curse, followed by one more curse and silence.
James fell to his knees, staring at the doorway and silently begging Lily to scream, curse, do anything, and knowing that the green flash he'd seen reflecting up the stairs meant she wouldn't do anything, ever.
He stood then, and a fire grew in his eyes, a fire matched by the fire in his heart. He slammed the door shut and sealed it with a locking charm and a charm his father had showed him, that sealed a door into the wall, making them one and the same, nearly impossible to find.
He looked around, and his eyes fell on Artemis, Lily's owl. He scribbled a short addition on the bottom of a note he'd prepared after Dumbledore's warning and sent the owl out the window as the sounds of curses began shattering the walls of the house.
James Potter stood in front of Harry's cradle, his wand in hand and knowing that there was one final thing that he had to do to seal Harry's protection from any harm directed at Harry.
The door blew up as he stood there, and he cast a spell Severus Snape had created on the first person through the door, sending them back out the doorway in a spray of blood. "One for you, Lily," he thought savagely, and cursed the next person back through the opening in the wall and quite nearly through the next wall as well.
"That's two," he called, caught in the blood lust of a man that has just lost his beloved wife. "Come and get some more." James went on to describe the Death Eaters ancestry, behaviours, and looks in scatological detail, stopping only to curse two more back out of the room.
The next person thought the wall blocked his curse, and James Potter and Tom Riddle faced each other, nearly close enough to touch.
"Give me the child and you can go free."
James sneered at Lord Voldemort. "As if I would ever give my son to a Mudblood paedophile bastard who doesn't even know his real name."
James saw the flare of anger in Voldemort's eyes and realized that something he'd said had struck a serious nerve in the older man, but he never had a chance to find out which insult it was.
With less than two meters between them, James Potter simply couldn't dodge the green curse that erupted from Voldemort's wand as the man's eyes flared in anger and hate.
Lord Voldemort looked at the man that had defied him so many times and then took the final two steps of his life, looking down into Harry's cradle. Harry had been protesting the noise quite loudly, but he stopped as Voldemort came into sight.
Voldemort looked at the child that prophecy said would destroy him, and sneered. Harry looked up at him and the green eyes that were Lily's gift to him seemed to light up in defiance, much as James' had a scant few seconds ago.
Voldemort stared at the child and thought for a second about raising it as his own, and then common sense intruded. Taking a child that was supposed to kill him and raising it was just asking for the child to turn on Voldemort, especially when he learned who had killed his parents.
"Good-bye, Harry Potter," he said and raised his wand. Somewhere in the house a clock struck nine as Tom Riddle, the so called "Lord Voldemort", cast his final spell.
OoOoOoO The fourth of February, 2007. Author's Notes. OoOoOoO
Yes, I know that Lily was an extremely powerful Witch, well capable of casting the spell that saved baby Harry, but that's the whole point of an Alternate Universe. Here, in this reality that I have started to record, Lily wasn't strong enough to cast the spell, and James was.
If anyone is interested, I'll post some more of this, but it's only an idea in the back of my head, and not that important to me. If Y'all want more of it, you'll have to tell me so, or it will remain a "What If?" story.
Revised notes: When I wrote this, it was just a bunnie running around in my head after writing a dark story, "Bonds of Blood and Love". I told you all that if you were interested in this story, you'd have to tell me, and you did. In fact, this is the second most read story I have, with more than forty thousand hits. I guess you really did want more of it.