Harry's Summer Cold
All recognizable characters belong to Mrs. Rowling, and I am not earning anything by writing this story.
Harry woke up to his aunt's hammering at his door and shouting, "Get up you lazy boy!"
He quickly scrambled out of bed, changed his clothes and after a minute spent in the bathroom headed for the kitchen to make breakfast. Wearily he noticed that his uncle was already sitting at the table, waiting impatiently. He hurried to make toast, eggs, bacon, and tea, silently listening to his aunt's and uncle's conversation about their participation in a gardening contest.
"Today, you will paint the fence, boy," Vernon bellowed as soon as Harry was finished making breakfast.
"Hurry up, boy, you don't have all day. The bathroom and Duddykin's room have to be cleaned as well," Petunia added.
'Well, it could be worse,' Harry thought, heading out the back door to occupy himself with the fence. While he was painting the fence, which took hours with the small brush his uncle had laid out for him, his thoughts wandered back to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he just had finished his second year a few weeks ago.
By the time the fence was finished, Harry's stomach was grumbling loudly, and on his way back through the fortunately empty kitchen he took an apple, which he devoured while he prepared everything to clean the bathroom. He grudgingly started to clean the room, wondering, 'How can they make the bathroom so dirty as if it hadn't been cleaned in a month? I only cleaned it the day before yesterday!' Suddenly, he noticed that his throat felt a little scratchy. He swallowed a few times, thinking, 'Oh Merlin, please don't let me get a cold right now. Maybe I should drink some water; perhaps it hurts because I didn't drink enough.'
While he cleaned Dudley's bedroom as fast as possible, which was difficult as the room was complete chaos, he noticed that his head had started to hurt as well. 'Maybe if I'm quick, I'll be able to rest for a few minutes,' he thought. However, as soon as he was nearly done with the untidy room, his aunt called for him.
"Hurry up and prepare dinner; Vernon is bringing a dinner guest."
Harry groaned inwardly and started to make dinner. "As soon as you finish, you will go back into your room…"
"… and pretend I'm not there," Harry quickly finished Petunia's sentence. He gratefully took the sandwich she handed him, headed up into his room and quickly ate the sandwich, noticing that his throat had become much worse. Harry sighed and began to do his Potions homework. However, he could hardly concentrate and his thoughts quickly wandered off to Hogwarts again. 'I'd like to know why Professor Snape hates me so much,' Harry thought sadly, 'except for the fact that I seem to look like my father.' Suddenly, he couldn't help letting out a series of sneezes. "Atchoo, atchoo, atchoo, heesshoo, heesshoo."
Harry threw a horrified look at the door, but apparently nobody had heard his sneezes and everything stayed quiet. 'Thank God,' Harry thought and quickly lay down on his bed. 'I better try to sleep before I have to sneeze or even cough and the Dursleys' guests notice me.' Completely worn out from doing chores all day, he fell asleep within seconds. However, he woke up every now and then during the night, shivering from the cold, feeling much too hot, or having to cough vehemently. In the morning, he felt horrible and was still shivering in spite of the thick Weasley sweater he had put on during the night.
His aunt gave him a strange look seeing that he was wearing a woollen sweater on a warm summer day but didn't comment and gave Harry a short list with chores to do. "You will not come in until the garden is finished completely," Vernon roared.
Harry gave him a short nod and tried to concentrate on making toast without burning it. His aunt's warning that it would be better to do the garden first as the weather forecast was not good didn't penetrate his feverish, foggy mind, and Harry started to do the ironing first. Then he made the beds in all rooms and cleaned the floor in each room on the second floor. Late in the afternoon, he headed out into the garden and began to mow the lawn, which afforded a lot of energy, and when he finally started to weed the garden, feeling very ill and utterly exhausted, it starting to rain. 'Maybe I can make dinner first,' Harry mused and walked over into the kitchen, where his aunt was just getting ready to go out.
"Shall I make dinner?" Harry asked hoarsely, noticing that his voice started to fail.
Petunia gave him a disapproving look. "Look, you're making my kitchen wet. Clean that up before you head outside again. You know that you have to finish the garden before you can come in. Dudley and I are going to meet Vernon in town and will have dinner together. We will be back late, and I expect the garden to be finished upon our return."
"Yes Aunt Petunia," Harry croaked and quickly dried the kitchen floor before he left once more through the back door. He spent the next few hours weeding the garden, sneezing and coughing all the time. He was feeling hot and cold at the same time, and his head was swimming. However, knowing that Vernon's punishment would be much worse if he went to bed without finishing the garden, he did his best to comply. It was already dark and still raining when he dragged his heavy body back to the kitchen door – only to notice that it was locked.
Harry tried to open the back door several times, trying to remember if there was a trick to open the door. It took his foggy mind quite a time to realize that the door was locked from inside. He threw a quick look on his watch. 'Midnight,' he thought horrified. He dragged himself around the house to the garage, seeing that the Dursleys' car was there and that the entrance door was locked as well. 'So I'm going to stay outside all night,' he realized. Feeling utterly sick now, he just wanted to lie down somewhere, and he didn't even mind where. He slowly walked back to the kitchen door, slowly letting his achy body down to the ground, and fell into an exhausted sleep.
He woke up to his uncle's shouting at him. The words however weren't able to penetrate his sore ears, and without knowing how he had managed to climb up to his room, Harry found himself back on the floor in his room hours later, his whole body stiff and achy. Suddenly his aunt shouted for him from outside his door, "Come and make dinner, you lazybones!"
Harry slowly scrambled onto his feet, swaying a little, and slowly stepped down the stairs. He entered the kitchen and gave his aunt a hesitant look, while he couldn't stop a few sneezes from escaping his mouth. 'Atchoo, atchoo, heesshoo, atchoo.' "I'm sorry, Aunt Petunia, I don't feel good. May I go back to bed?" he asked quietly, hating how hoarse his voice sounded.
Petunia gave him a terrified glance and returned, "Go back to your room quickly before you infect the whole house."
During the evening, Harry's condition took a turn to the worse, and Harry was captured in fever induced nightmares involving magical animals.
Harry was standing on the Quidditch pitch, carefully looking around. He could sense the presence of something. Suddenly, a pink dragon came from the direction of the Forbidden Forest, heading directly to the lake, where it put up a short fight with the Giand Squid before it came over to him. Fortunately, Harry had his broom in his hands, quickly mounted it and sprinted away. However, the dragon kept following him and chased him all over Hogwarts and into Hogsmeade. Just when the dragon had managed to gave him a kick in the head, Harry woke up with a jolt, coughing and panting heavily.
'I need help,' Harry thought, horrified, noticing that he could hardly breathe. 'Have to go to Hogwarts, need to see Madam Pomfrey,' he decided. 'If I only had kept Hedwig,' he mused. Fearing that his uncle might hurt her, he had sent his owl back to the owlery at Hogwarts a few days ago. Lacking a better idea, he pulled his broom out from under his bed, opened the window, and mounted his broom like he did in his fever dream. 'No dragons around,' he confirmed glancing around anxiously when he took off toward Scotland.
Several hours later, a half-conscious child reached the Hogwarts gates. He flew up to the entrance doors, hardly able to keep himself on his broom anymore. Using his last bit of energy, he opened the door and let himself in. 'There's no way I can walk up to the hospital wing; have to fly,' he decided and flew through the empty halls of Hogwarts. He dragged himself to a bed in the hospital wing, slowly crawling under the covers, while his mind slipped out of consciousness.
HP HEALER POMFREY HP
Several hours later, Professor McGonagall was sitting at her desk correcting the end of year tests of her second year Transfiguration class. With a sigh she put away the last parchment, took off her glasses, and rubbed her aching forehead. 'I better go and get a headache potion from Poppy's shelf,' she thought, annoyed by the headache that had been pestering her since she got up in the morning. 'It's time to head down for lunch anyway,' she realized and swiftly left her office, heading down the stairs to the hospital wing. 'Good that Poppy's not there to pester me,' she thought while she entered the large room.
Suddenly, she stopped dead in her track, seeing that one of the beds was occupied. She quickly walked over to get a glance at the person in the bed and let out a small cry. "Potter! What are you doing here?"
Not receiving an answer, she became worried and carefully touched the boy's neck, feeling for a pulse. 'Yes, he's alive,' she thought relieved. 'But what happened to him? He seems to be unconscious.' His cheeks were flushed unnaturally, and his sweaty hair was plastered to his forehead although the child seemed to be shivering. She carefully placed the back of her hand on the child's forehead and quickly pulled it back, horrified by the heat the boy radiated. Minerva conjured an ice-cold cloth, which she adjusted on the child's forehead, before she hurried over to the fireplace to call her best friend, Poppy Pomfrey, out of her holidays.
HP HEALER POMFREY
Poppy rushed over to Harry's side, quickly waving her wand over him several times. "Call Severus and tell him to bring the strongest fever reducer he has," she ordered her friend briskly, while she pointed her wand to a parchment on the night table that immediately filled with many thin words.
A minute later, Severus hurried to her side, a phial in his hands. "Lift his head, Poppy," he ordered and proceeded to let a light blue liquid dribble into the boy's mouth, moving his other hand along his throat to make the unconscious child swallow.
Poppy pointed her wand to the child's head to take his temperature and closed her eyes in relief. "That was close," she breathed. "Thank you, Severus." Seeing her colleagues' questioning looks, she explained, "His temperature was at nearly 43 degrees, which means he was nearly dead. Now it's down to 40.6. Mr. Potter has caught a bad case of pneumonia. I have no idea how he could get so bad and I can't tell if he will completely recover either. He will at least suffer from Asthma, which is not curable. Can anyone tell me how he came here?"
"Obviously with a broom," Severus stated coolly, picking up the child's broom from the floor next to Harry's bed before he gave Minerva a questioning glance.
"I have no idea; I only came here by chance to get a headache potion," Minerva admitted, absentmindedly rubbing her sore forehead.
Poppy gave her a piercing glance before she turned to Severus. "I need a potion against pneumonia for him, the strongest you can brew, please."
"Of course, Poppy, I'll be back in an hour," Severus agreed and hurried back to the Floo.
Poppy gave him a grateful nod and went to her office to retrieve a potion for Minerva and Floo-call Albus. While the two friends were waiting for the headmaster to come over, Poppy handed Minerva the headache potion, watching as her friend gulped down the potion and sighed in relief as the headache slowly faded into non-existence. Poppy unobtrusively waved her wand at her friend, muttering something to herself.
"We need to know what happened," Albus stated a few minutes later. "As soon as he is coherent, he has to return to his relatives. They will already be very worried about him."
Minerva let out a huge gasp. "If they were worrying about him, how come that he arrived here on his broom, nearly dead, Albus? He cannot return to his horrible relatives!"
"We will ask Severus to retrieve the information from Harry's mind, Minerva, but I can assure you that his illness won't be the Dursleys' fault. You know Harry, certainly he has done something unreasonable again."
Minerva gave her old mentor and friend a horrified look, unconsciously rubbing her forehead again, while Poppy watched her worriedly. "Minerva, I'd like you to lie down on the bed next to Harry. You are overworked and are running a slight temperature," she hesitantly advised her friend.
"See Minerva, do as Poppy says. You'll see everything will be all right," Albus told her, smiling.
"No!" Minerva replied shortly and sat down on the edge of Harry's bed, carefully stroking his flushed cheeks.
"I cannot do Legilimency on him while he is unconscious with such a high fever, Albus," Severus sneered when he came back with the requested potion and took the place Minerva had just vacated to make space for him, so that he could give Harry the potion with Poppy's help.
"You can and you will do Legilimency on him when I enervate him," Albus insisted and pointed his wand to Harry's head. "Ennervate."
As soon as Harry stirred and opened bleary, green eyes a little bit, Severus entered his mind, watching the last few days' happenings at the Dursleys, very careful not to hurt the already sick child more than necessary. 'How can people treat a child like that? His home life seems to be nearly as bad as my own,' he thought confused and couldn't help feeling sorry for the child. While Poppy tended to Harry, he put the scenes he had witnessed into the headmaster's Pensieve, so that his three colleagues could watch them. In the meantime, Severus took a seat next to Harry's bed. "How are you feeling, Potter?" he asked in a soft, silky voice.
"De Dragob wabts to eat be," Harry complained, pointing to the far end of the room.
"Did you see a dragon over there?" Severus asked in concern. He had already witnessed several of Harry's fevered dreams, many of them concerning dragons.
"Ye," Harry replied miserably and reached out for the teacher's hand. "I dob't feel good edough to fight a dragob," he told the man pleadingly, while looking up into Severus' dark eyes.
"I know, Harry, you're very ill," Severus replied quietly and proceeded to sponge the child's face.
Suddenly, his three colleagues left the Pensieve and immediately began to have a livid discussion, the voices getting louder with each sentence. "Quiet!" Severus hissed, seeing that Harry had begun to whimper in fright. He squeezed the child's hand lightly and said quietly, "It's all right, there aren't any dragons. Professor McGonagall and Madam Pomfrey are fighting with Professor Dumbledore."
"Okay," Harry mumbled and let out a few hoarse coughs, which pulled Poppy to his bedside.
"Then I need someone of you to become Harry's guardian," Dumbledore said in a loud voice, laced with a hint of anger, his eyes void of his normal twinkle.
"Minerva," Severus suggested.
"Oh Severus, I'm much too old," Minerva returned.
"I think Minerva and Severus should apply for the guardianship together," Poppy threw in. "Minerva's condition is not very good at the moment, and thinking of Harry's condition, in the long run it would be wise if he had a guardian capable of the most important healing spells."
"That sounds reasonable," Albus agreed. "Minerva and Severus, are you willing to accept the temporary guardianship over Harry until the end of the holidays?"
"I am willing," Minerva agreed and threw a concerned look at Harry, who had gone over into a semi-conscious state, mumbling incoherently about dragons that wanted to chase him in the rain.
"I agree," Severus echoed without any sign of a sneer in his voice.
"All right, then I will ask the house elves to add a room to your quarters, Severus, with an additional door to Minerva's quarters," Albus stated, and both teachers agreed.
HP HEALER POMFREY HP
During the next days, Harry drifted in and out of consciousness, and he was delirious, constantly talking incoherently about dragons and other magical animals. Minerva, Severus, and Poppy took turns staying at his side all the time while his fever remained dangerously high.
One day, Harry's fever finally came down a bit and he opened his eyes, curiously taking in his surroundings. Minerva and Severus were sitting on chairs next to his bed, talking animatedly, and he found himself in a very nice room, painted in white and a light blue, in the most comfortable bed that he had ever slept in. Giving his teachers a confused look, he asked, "Where am I?"
"You are in your own room at Hogwarts," Severus replied softly. "The door over there leads to the living room of my quarters, and the door on the other side leads to Professor McGonagall's living room. You're free to access both of our quarters as you will be staying with us over the summer.
"Harry, you won't return to the Dursleys, at least not this summer. Professor Snape and I are your temporary guardians for the summer," Minerva explained, causing Harry to let out a huge gasp that immediately turned into coughs.
"Careful, child," Severus admonished him softly.
"Am I still delirious?" Harry asked quietly. "That sounds too good to be true."
Minerva and Severus watched contentedly as a small smile played on the child's lips.
Originally, this was the end of my little one-shot. However, so many people asked me to continue that I decided to add a few more chapters.