From The Mouths of Babes

This is totally AU. It is set in a universe where Dumbledore managed to convince the Potters to hide using his help, Voldemort failed to find them and didn't accidentally kill himself. Harry is now about 5 years old and his parents are still alive. The war wages on, unabated.

The Man who is a Death Eater

The man with the big nose is asleep at the table.

Uncle Siri says the man with the big nose is a bastard. Dad laughs and says he is a greasy bastard. Mum says that if she hears anymore of that language they will both feel the blunt end of her wand. But she smiles when she says it so I can tell she is not really mad.

The man with the big nose snorts and tries to find a more comfortable angle for his head.

The table looks uncomfortable, but Uncle Siri says that the man normally sleeps hanging upside down so the table must be more comfortable than what he is normally used too. He can probably sleep anywhere if he can sleep upside down.

I have seen him fall asleep in a Meeting. I am not allowed to go to Meetings but onetime me and my best friend Ron hide in the smelly den that used to be where the old house elf lived and we get to watch some of it because none of the grown ups know we were there. We got caught really soon though, because Ron sneezed.

Ron has lots of brothers. His favourite brother is Bill because he plays chess with him. I like Bill too because he has an earring. I told mum I want an earring and she said only over her dead body which did not make any sense because I would have to stand over her all the time, dangling the earring. And I don't want my mum to die.

Ron also has a little sister. His little sister is annoying because she follows us around. Sometimes we tell her that we are playing hide and seek and tell her to go hide and then we go do something else. One time, Ron's mum caught us and she yelled at us for a very long time. But I like Ron's mum anyway because she makes nice food.

Ron likes the man with the big nose because one time he caught two of Ron's brothers, Fred and George, going through his special bag and he talked to them quietly for a long time and they went really pale and scared looking. Ron likes it when Fred and George get told off. Ron's dad didn't like it though and he told the man with the big nose that he would thank him not to talk to his sons like that. The man with the big nose bowed and smiled at him then walked away. The smile was not a very nice smile, it didn't make his eyes crinkle up at the ends like most other people's smiles do.

The man with the big nose looks sick at the moment. He is very pale and has dark shadows under his eyes.

When I am sick my mum makes me a potion. Dad says mum is a very clever witch who can brew anything. Mum looks sad when he says this. One time the man with the big nose told mum that she was wasting her life and her talent on a man with nice smile and barely suppressed Sadistic Tendencies. She slapped him. I think they would have started yelling at each other but they remembered I was there. So instead the man with the big nose smiled his not-very-nice-smile and walked away. I asked mum what "sadistic tendencies" meant but she pretended not to hear.

So I asked Uncle Remus instead and he told me that someone with sadistic tendencies is someone who enjoys hurting people. Mum wouldn't talk to someone who enjoyed hurting people so I think the man with the big nose was just trying to wind her up. He does that a lot. He sometimes asks Uncle Remus if he has eaten anyone recently, which is not very nice because Uncle Remus has a Disability and you shouldn't make fun of people with Disabilities.

The man with the big nose has just opened his eyes. They're so black that you can't see his pupils. He's narrowing them at me now.

"You are Potter's brat, aren't you." he says.

"I'm not a brat" I say.

"But you are a Potter, aren't you?" he asks. He says this in a really mean voice.

"Yes" I say.

"Shouldn't you be in bed?"

"I can't sleep".

"Well run along, mini-Potter, little boys who wonder around at two o'clock in the morning are liable to get eaten by the monsters that lurk under their beds" he smiles his not-very-nice smile.

"Why doesn't your eyes get crinkly?"

"What?" his eyes widen like mum's do when I ask her something strange.

"Why don't your eyes get crinkly at the ends when you smile?" I grin at him and point at my eyes to demonstrate.

"Would you prefer it if I did this?" and he narrows his eyes and draws back his lips so that all his teeth are showing. His teeth are yellow and crooked. It's scary


"But my eyes are all crinkled up at the ends" he says. Somehow he manages to keep his face like that while he says this. I start to giggle. He pokes his tongue out at me between his teeth.

"What are you doing?" says a voice from the door. The man straightens up. His face becomes blank.

"Morning Evans" he says. He sounds like Uncle Siri does when he's trying to annoy someone.

"It's Mrs Potter now, thanks" snaps mum from the doorway, "What are you doing with my son?"

"Recruiting him" says the man, smiling his smile.


"Your son's about to become the youngest ever Death Eater" says the man.

"How dare you say that infront of my son" says mum, in the special low voice that always makes dad look scared.

"What's a Death Eater?" I ask.

The man turns and smiles properly for the first time, "I am" he says.

"Is there a reason you are here?" says mum, still in the special fighting-with-dad-voice.

"I have to report to someone" says the man-who-is-a-Death-Eater.

"At two o'clock in the morning?" snaps my mum.

"Death Eaters don't plot at two in the afternoon over a pot of Dilhma, don't be mislead by our open and sharing nature and our many community orientated projects".

"Fine….Harry, go to bed. You…..You can report to me".

"I don't think so….Mrs Potter. I should be reporting to someone whose responsibilities extend beyond making nutritious snacks and massaging god-like egos. In short, I think it might be a good idea if you would totter upstairs and find me someone who isn't a house-wife".

"Do you think you're clever? Hm? Mr Barely-Reformed-Death-Eater. Do you think you're impressing anyone with your little speeches and your juvenile insults?"

"I wouldn't aspire so high, I intend merely to annoy" The man-who-is-a-Death-Eater smiled his not very-nice-smile and nods at me, "Don't you think you should take mini-Potter of to bed, little house-frau?"

Mum narrows her eyes at the Death Eater Man and grabs my hand. Hard. "I expect someone will see you in the morning, if you object to telling me so much".

"Brill" says the man and he puts his feet on the table.