TWIST OF FATE
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and everything related belongs to J. K. Rowling. And the places I mention in the story do not belong to me.
Author's note: I am extremely grateful to Dark Raven 4426 for beta-ing this chapter. Thank you, Bella!!!
SUMMARY: This story features Harry as a girl who lived with Dursleys for 16 years without knowing anyone who could care for her. While living with them, being a girl, she had slightly different problems compared what Harry could have had if she were a boy. That is what the prologue describes. It is a story that tells how she breaks free from them to gain everything (friends, family and love) that was denied to her for so long.
I must tell to you Harriet will not start romancing with her future love immediately and certainly not sleep with him on first sight.
Simply it is a story of teenage girl who struggles her way through life and still manages to come on top.
Most of the characters are just above 18, going to college. They will have problems of real world since they don't have magic to solve it.
Warnings: Alternate universe, Non-Magic, Harry featured as a girl although almost all the characters have close to canon personalities, mentions of abuse and occasional use of swear words. This chapter is particularly rated M for Violence. I will add furthur warnings as the story progresses. PROLOGUE: MY LIFE SO FAR
PROLOGUE: MY LIFE SO FAR
Hi, my name is Harriet Joan Potter. It's kind of odd for me to talk about myself because it's seldom that anyone asks me about my opinions let alone my feelings. Certainly living with my Aunt's family has not helped at all. My Uncle will scoff and say 'who cares what you have to say.' I am partly reluctant to speak about myself for I absolutely detest seeing pity in people's eyes directed at me. Now you must all be wondering what has happened in my life for a person to behave in such a manner.
Well, one could say my life took a turn around, twice, due to two major events that happened, one on Halloween and the other two days before Christmas Eve.
My parents, James and Lily Potter, died in a vicious car accident on 31st October 1982. I was fifteen months old then. Since my father didn't have any relatives alive, the court requested my Aunt, my mum's elder sister and only living relative, to take me in. Despite being sisters, Aunt Petunia didn't love her (much later I learned that it was envy) and, hence, despised me for being a burden on her family. My Aunt would have been quite happy to send me to an orphanage and never have anything to do with me if it weren't for my Uncle Vernon's greed. You see, the court granted a handsome amount of money for monthly child support to the family that took care of me, from the trust fund that my parents left me.
So, my Uncle somehow convinced my Aunt to take me in. That is how I came to live with the Dursleys.
Several times I thought life at an orphanage would have been a hundred times better than at the Dursleys. Much later I realised what my Uncle might have said to Aunt Petunia to make her accept me into their house. No sooner had I turned four, I was ordered to do chores around the house such as cleaning and gardening. A single mistake on my part would lead to the punishment of no food and more chores. The only time they spent money on me would be for school, probably because they were afraid the authorities might come knocking on the door to investigate why I don't go to school.
The Dursleys had a severe obsession with being in the good graces of the neighbours, which turned out to be a blessing for me because they never raised a hand on me but that didn't stop them from insulting my parents and criticising me at every chance they got.
It wasn't until I turned ten that I was made to cook for them because I could finally reach the stove. I always hated being the shortest in the class but it was probably from sleeping in the crumpled space of the cupboard under the stairs.
How could I forget my baby whale of a cousin, Dudley, who made my life more like hell than it already was? I was forced to wear his hand-me-down clothes despite my being a girl and not to mention four times smaller. His favourite pastime was beating me up in front of his friends and getting me in trouble with his parents. I had to learn to dodge or avoid Dudley and his gang. Most of the children in Privet Drive and in school were afraid of being targets to the wrath of Dudley's gang, thus he made sure I never had any friends either in the neighbourhood or in school. I was so happy when he was sent to Smeltings boys' school, the year he turned eleven because he could no longer torment me in school at least.
I know my Uncle and Aunt knew about the beatings but ignored it, at least until I started menstruating. They moved me from the cupboard to Dudley's second bedroom when I could no longer fit in the cupboard much to his disappointment. Since I didn't have many possessions he was still allowed to store his junk in my new room. The room had a single bed with thin bedding and a threadbare blanket, bedside table, a chair with a lamp and cupboard with a single column filled with my clothes and school uniform and the rest with Dudley's broken toys and things.
Puberty was one of many things I had to deal on my own. The day I found myself bleeding while taking a bath sent me into a complete panic because I was afraid my Aunt would accuse me bringing diseases into her precious house and throw me out. But still I was frightened; I almost gave into the urge of telling my Aunt about it. When I finally gathered myself to deal with it rationally, I skipped school and went to the local library and searched for what ailment was plaguing me. After I read all about menstruation, I returned to school feeling somewhat relieved. When my teacher asked about my absence, I told her what had happened, she smiled sympathetically at me and enquired as to whether my Aunt talked to me about it before. When I said yes, she let me go without even asking for my absence letter and informed me that I should let my Aunt know since it was my first period.
When I finally got up the courage and told my Aunt after I returned from school, she was shocked to say the least. I got the feeling that she forgot the fact that I'm actually a girl. I certainly don't blame her, what with the boy's clothes I wear and all the heavy work I do around the house. I myself sometimes forgot. After she recovered from the shock, she snapped at me that I was burdening them with more trouble and expenses. That was the day I cried for first time in long time. Living with the Dursleys for eleven years had taught me not to expect any love or care from them towards me. But after having a terrible day suffering from cramps, I had hoped my Aunt would at least sympathise with me because I read that all women go through it. Seeing my crying, she grimaced and dragged me to her bathroom, handed me a pad and explained how to wear it before dragging me to the second bathroom down the hall and commanded me to wear it before closing the door on me. Once I was finished, she ordered me into my bedroom and told me stay in it until she called for dinner. I was shocked she didn't berate or make me do any chores.
After dinner, she followed me to my room and said she would buy necessary things for me tomorrow and that I need not do any chores for the next two days. I simply gaped at her. She then asked whether the teacher had given me the talk. I stuttered yes (simply because no matter what her out of character behaviour, I didn't wish to hear 'The Talk' from her and also I read everything there is to know about PMS and sex though I'd never thought about it before) and she just warned me to stay away from boys and left. While I lay on my bed, I realised I would have to go through this every month or so until I was very old. That was the kindest thing she had ever done for me.
After three days, everything went back to normal and I was given twice the chores to do. My Aunt thought I was old enough cook a complete meal (before I only made breakfast), so she started teaching me. Once she deemed me satisfactory, (not that she thought so) she made me cook dinner for the family and sometimes for dinner guests. As I grew older, the Dursleys left me pretty much alone as long as I did the everyday jobs and followed my Aunt's instructions to the T. Even Dudley grew tired of taunting me and spent more time outside the house, for which I was quite glad.
After Dudley left for Smeltings, I dared to make few tentative friendships with my classmates, nothing close though. I remembered how sometimes Dudley's friends came for sleepovers or tea or dinner. Although I thought it would be nice to spend time at a friend's house, I didn't think the Dursleys would appreciate it if I brought my friends over and also I was ashamed of people finding out about my home life.
Holidays were the times when I was felt most miserable. The Dursleys never involved me in any of their celebrations except to help my Aunt with cooking or cleaning the mess. I envied my cousin every time he received numerous gifts on his birthday and Christmas when I received none. They left me with Mrs. Figg, an old lady with a weird fascination for cats that lived in the neighbourhood, when they went on vacations. I didn't mind staying with her because she let me watch TV and gave me cake on holidays. While staying with her I helped take care of her fourteen cats.
Despite all the household work I did, I always managed to get good grades in school. Every time my Aunt saw my report card, she would purse her lips, glare disdainfully and assign me more chores. But I know she always wondered how I managed it for it always took me until nightfall to finish my chores and my Uncle's warned that he would take away my lamp if I wasted electricity any more than necessary. Well, I spent most of the breaks at school finishing my homework and studying. A few times, teachers who noticed this asked why I was not playing with other children. I shrugged, 'I don't like it' which was true because it made me tired and it was difficult to finish my chores after school. Teacher would then lecture me on the importance of physical activity and having fun.
And I would always scoff internally and think, 'you have no idea how much physical activity I get at home.' Although the part of having fun always made me sad but I knew I would prefer not having fun than getting a tongue lashing and no food for not completing my chores. Whenever my Uncle got curious about my schooling, Aunt Petunia would lie about how I was doing poorly as was expected and she had given me proper punishment for it. Then my Uncle would mutter something along the lines of, 'what else could the spawn of James and Lily be' and I would bite my tongue and endure their comments.
As a child, I was quite curious to know about my parents and dared to ask Aunt Petunia but she ignored me or said 'that's none of your business.' Then she would make it very clear not to question her again about them unless I wanted to be starved and locked in the cupboard. Once, and only once, I ignored her warning and pestered her about my parents. She kept her promise and locked me in for two days with no food or water. After that I never asked her about them again. Sometimes, when Uncle Vernon was in bad mood, he would sneer at me 'your parents were good for nothing drunkards who left you at home alone and took to the streets, which eventually killed them.' He used to sound so honest that I had no choice but to believe him because I had no proof to the contrary. A part of my heart always believed that the Dursleys were lying and that my parents were good people.
Aunt Marge was my Uncle's sister. I believed my Aunt was an angel compared to her. Every time she visited, she would waste no time, when she was not stuffing food or gulping down bottles of wine that Vernon saved for years, to insult my father by calling him a 'wayward drunk' my mother a 'no good bitch' and that I was 'an ungrateful shit living off her brother and his wife's good will.' It took every ounce of self-control on my part not to attack her. Only when my Aunt noticed the end of my patience would she send me to my room. Also, I was terrified of Marge's bulldogs that she brought with her, with good reason too. Several times she set them free on me either to entertain my cousin as I ran for my life or to teach me a lesson. For the first time I wished someone died. I wished she would die and leave me to live my life somewhat peacefully.
Unlike the other teenage girls who were worried about their looks, trying to impress boys and going on dates, I was trying not piss off my Aunt and pass in school.
My life progressed in that way until the Christmas holidays of the year I turned seventeen. Miraculously Christmas brought me my first ever gift (I don't remember life before my parents' death.) It was the gift of freedom away from the abuse and lies.
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