Dedicated to dobbydarling
And, as always, a big thank you to my beta, Gaby-Black
Harry sat on the couch and sighed. The sounds of the night before were still echoing in his mind.
Push, Ginny, push... it's a boy, it's a boy!... oh, he's wonderful... he totally looks like you... no, like you... I'm a dad... everybody, meet James Potter...
He sighed again. He finally was at home, alone. He didn't have to pretend anymore to be happy; he didn't have to cheer along with everyone else.
'I'm scared,' he said aloud and was surprised by the sound of his own voice. Everything had happened so quickly: Ginny, the Weasleys, and them, him. He still remembered that little bundle that Ginny had placed in his arms. He looked so small, so weak and so harmless.
I have to protect him, he thought. To shield him from he dangers of the world.
There were so many dangers in the world, Harry thought, as the figures of Voldemort and of Death Eaters crossed his mind. He shuddered. They are gone, he thought. Gone for good.
But he couldn't help feeling scared for the future of this child, his son.
He got up without knowing what he was doing and made his way towards Sirius's room. Ginny and he had decided that this room would be the baby's room. Sirius would have been happy about it, they had both thought.
Harry looked inside. Ginny had had all the furniture removed (the posters included, Harry thought with a smile) except for Sirius's bed. Harry walked towards it. In all those years, Ginny and he had never made changes to that room, out of respect for Sirius's memory. But it still seemed strange to Harry that his god-father had actually slept in that bed, in those very same blankets.
But now we have to get rid of this, he thought, feeling an awkward lump in his throat. With a lazy move of the wand he put the bed out of the room.
And then he noticed it. It was a piece of paper all folded up. Harry took it and opened it and immediately recognized Sirius's handwriting. Feeling his heart beating faster, he started to read it.
I've just left St. Mungo's after visiting Lily and Harry and I'm here, sitting at my desk, writing a letter that I'm probably not going to give you. Well, who knows... maybe one day when we're old and full of wrinkles I'll give it you. Or maybe I'll give it to Harry once he grows up. Who knows?
You know what? When you told me that Lily was pregnant I thought you were crazy. I mean, I was happy of course. Incredibly happy. But I thought you were insane. I mean, there was a war going on! Grief and dangers everywhere and you had a baby on its way! I thought it was crazy. I thought it was selfish. A baby shouldn't be born in a time like this, I thought.
And during the pregnancy I looked at you and I couldn't believe what I saw. Because every day we got those horrible news, of people being killed, blasted into pieces (poor Benjy) or disappearing, but you still looked self-confident. Happy. Not worried. And I wondered how you could possibly be so carefree, with a baby on its way and so many dangers waiting for him.
And then, today, when Lily placed Harry in your arms, I saw your expression. You were scared to death, James. There was terror in your eyes. Your shoulders were shaking and your eyes were widened.
And so I looked at Harry, and I couldn't help being scared as well. Because he is so so so so so small. He is so small. He has such small hands, and a small head, and small legs and small arms and everything in him screams: I'm small!
And then you placed him in my arms (I almost cried when you did it, by the way) and he opened his eyes. He opened his eyes! I looked at him. It's your son, James! I feel like it's my son, in some way. You know, I even think his chin looks like mine, which is crazy, I know.
And then I thought that we shouldn't be scared. It would be like letting Voldemort win, wouldn't it? And then I understood you and Lily. You brought light to our lives. Hope to our times. Your small son is a sign that we can be happy. That we must be happy. That we have to win, because he must never see the terrible things we saw.
Don't be scared, because I'll be there. I'll be there on any occasion, I'll be there to change his nappies, I'll be there to rock him to sleep, I'll be there to teach him how to ride a broom when Lily is not looking. You and Lily won't be alone in this.
And if you... well... if something happens (you don't know how much it hurts to write this), I'll be there. I'll protect him. I'll shield him. I'll give him shelter. I'll starve for him. I'll go to Azkaban for him. I'll die for him. Nothing bad will ever happen to him. I promise, James. He's going to be happy; everything's going to be alright. He's going to grow up with joy and laughs. He's going to attend Hogwarts. He's going to fall in love, maybe to get married, to have kids (which would make you a grand-father... for Merlin's sake!). I'll make sure that all of this happens.
Please, James, don't be scared. Don't be scared because you'll be a great father. Don't be scared because you have Lily by your side. And, please, don't be scared because I'll be there. Whatever happens, I'll always be there. For you, for Lily and, most of all, for Harry. Isn't it crazy that I already love so much someone who's so small? Now I think I understand what Dumbledore always says, you know, the power of love. Maybe I understand.
Please, don't be scared.
Harry read the last line once more.
Don't be scared.
Maybe this is what Sirius had tried to tell me, he thought.
He thought of him. He remembered him in the Whomping Willow, at Grimmauld Place. He remembered his letters and every time his head had appeared in the fireplace at Hogwarts.
He had never really said those words, but all those times they had been implied, as if they were obvious.
Don't be scared. I'm here.
He realised he had tears swimming in his eyes. He wasn't tired anymore. He closed his eyes and Disapparated at St. Mungo's. He quickly made his way towards Ginny's room and knocked on the door.
'Come in,' Ginny said.
He opened the door and smiled at Ginny and James, who was resting in her arms.
'Hi,' he said, quietly.
'What are you doing here?' Ginny asked, with a smile.
Harry trailed off as he looked at the baby and understood what Sirius had meant. He looked so small.
'Not scared anymore?' Ginny asked.
'How could you tell?' Harry asked, surprised.
'Harry,' Ginny said, chuckling softly, 'I know you. I love you.'
'I know...' Harry said, walking towards them. 'The thing is... I can't even remember my father... and he is so small... and then I think of our past... all the things we went through when we were, you know, kids... and I don't want him to go through all this. I was scared to death that something bad might happen to him.'
'I know,' she said, rocking the baby. 'Why did you change your mind?'
'I don't know,' Harry said, shrugging as he sat down on the bed. 'Maybe it's… you know… I felt so alone at first. I know you're there and so is your family... but... I'm the father and this can't be changed. But then I realised that... well... I'm not really alone. There are people who will never really leave me. Who will help me.'
'You're right,' Ginny said, with a smile, and then looked into her husband's eyes. 'Please, don't be scared.'
'Everybody keeps telling me this,' Harry said, grinning and caressing her long red hair.
'Who's everybody?' Ginny asked, curious.
'Everybody who loves me,' Harry said, and Ginny seemed satisfied with his answer.
'Have you thought of a middle name? I have no ideas, really' she said.
'Yes, I did.' He paused and smiled. 'I thought of Sirius.'
'Do you like it?' Harry asked, looking at the baby, who gurgled.
They both laughed.
'You know what...' Ginny said. 'I was looking at him and suddenly, I don't know why, I thought he had your chin.'
'Really?' Harry asked with a strange smile.
'Yes... why do you look so weird?' she asked.
'Nothing... it's just... I'm not scared at all,' he said, grinning. 'Not anymore.'
'Glad to hear it,' Ginny answered, and placed a kiss on the top of James's head.
Harry smiled and he closed his eyes. Thanks, he whispered, and he could have sworn that he heard a bark-like laughter.
A/N So, what did you think?