Disclaimer: I own nothing but this story line of this one fanfic here. Suing me would be pointless since I am a rather broke College Junior. Unless you'd like my debts...

Also, I'd just like to say that I rather like Snape. He's an interesting guy, especially since he always protects Harry like "a mama cat with her kittens," as my father put it. This story will reflect some of that, just so you know. Enjoy!! And please review. But only CREATIVE Criticism, please.

Harry glared angrily at his cousin, or more appropriately, the locked door that separated him from Dudley, as he continued to pound on Harry's door and taunt him. This summer had not gone well at all for Harry and this was only the most recent of taunting sessions from his cousin.

The summer had begun as usual, only now his uncle grew angry at him for waking him in the middle of the night during his nightmares. He watched Cedric's death at least once a week now, without Dumbledore's calming presence to keep the memories at bay. He couldn't tell his Aunt and Uncle of his dreams; they'd never understand. They would probably just reprimand him for surviving.

As if that weren't enough, Dudley had come home with a crush. It wasn't an actual girl he'd come home with, but rather a story about a beautiful girl he was seeing. Supposedly, severely overweight, he never had lost much weight even with his many enforced diets, Dudley had snagged a girl.

"Oooh... My baby's all grown up," Aunt Petunia had cried when Dudley had made the announcement over dinner Harry's first night back.

Uncle Vernon clapped Dudley on the back with a gruff, though proud, "That's my boy! A lady-killer just like his father!"

Harry'd had to fight not to squirt his mashed potatoes out his nose. Just the thought of Dudley having a girlfriend was ridiculous. Dudley had seen the stifled snort and his eyes narrowed.

"Jealous? Bet you couldn't get one," Dudley taunted, sneering at Harry. Harry thought momentarily that he looked as though he were afraid Harry would say he had a girlfriend.

"Of course he couldn't," scoffed Uncle Vernon, "Who'd want a scraggily little freak like him?"

Anger flashed through Harry, but he hid it by taking another bite of potatoes and going back to ignoring the family.

Dudley wasn't satisfied with this and kept badgering Harry daily over it, when he wasn't bragging about the girl. It had gotten so that Harry truly doubted that Dudley had a girlfriend, never mind a girl that would have anything to do with him.

One day, a couple of weeks after the summer had begun, Harry had enough of his cousin's bullying and decided to tell him exactly what he thought.

"Of course I don't have a girlfriend," Harry yelled at a surprised Dudley. "I have better things to do with my time than date some girl who likes my fame in the wizarding world better than me! And I don't think you have one either. You probably have never even spoken to her and if you did I doubt she'd do more than turn her back on you!"

Harry was for what was quite possibly the first time in his life spiteful as he gave a meaningful look at Dudley's overflowing middle. Dudley looked shocked, then his face fell in angry hate, before he smiled a cruel smile.

"Mum! Mum! Harry said I couldn't get a girlfriend..." Dudley yelled as he waddled as fast as he could, fake tears falling down his face.

And so it was that Harry was boxed into the wall by his uncle before being locked in his room. Even Hedwig was locked away in her cage and the bars that the Weasleys had torn off the summer before Harry's second year were replaced. Dudley became a regular visitor, taunting Harry through the door, gloating with the knowledge that if Harry said anything in return Uncle Vernon would come back to "discard" of Hedwig.

Harry looked at Hedwig and shivered at the thought. He knew it was only a matter of time before someone came looking for him, but Hedwig at the moment was his only friend. And even if she wasn't, he still loved her. She'd been with him since he first discovered he was a wizard. He hated the thought of losing her.

The threat of his god father no longer worked since the Dursley's believed he couldn't contact him and had decided that he might not even have one. Harry knew he was in trouble now and only hoped it did not take Ron or Hermione or Sirius long to realize something had gone wrong. They were his only hope.

Harry sighed as he curled up on his bed. Aunt Petunia called for Dudley to come have dinner and Harry's stomach grumbled with hunger. He knew Aunt Petunia wouldn't feed him again until the morning, but he hoped for some mercy anyway.

Harry lay in bed and watched the sky darken as the sun set. His homework was already finished since he'd been left his books and had so much time on his hands, so watching the sunset and talking to Hedwig was all he had left. He listened as the Dursley's finished watching their evening programs and went to bed with a final taunt from Dudley. He wasn't tired, just bored, so he decided to write another letter to one of his friends.

Without anything else to do, Harry had started writing letters to his friends and godfather. After two weeks of imprisonment, it was all he had to keep him entertained and so the letters had turned into little more than diary entries.

Harry had only begun to write when a horrible crunching noise resounded through the house, overtaking even Uncle Vernon's loud snoring.

"What," Uncle Vernon cried as Harry heard him stamping into the hallway.

Aunt Petunia began screaming as a calm, low voice said, "Crucio!"

Harry heard Uncle Vernon begin screaming and ran to find his wand.

"Alohomora," he cried, opening Hedwig's cage and dodging as she flew screeching from her cage.

He turned to face the door as he heard a magnificent CRASH that silenced all the screaming suddenly. A grim smile crossed his face as he imagined Dudley fainting on his Aunt and Uncle, but he wiped it away soon after he heard footsteps approaching his room.

"Find Sirius," he told the suddenly silent owl. Hedwig seemed to understand and flew from the room in a sudden burst of feathers as the door opened. Startled shouts sounded from the hall as Harry ran toward the Deatheater in his doorway.

"Expelliarmus," Harry shouted as the dark wizard brought his wand up to bear. The wand flew out of his hand and Harry followed his first spell up with another.


The man flew back into four more startled Deatheaters and Harry flew past them all. He ran out into the starlit night before the Deatheaters could catch him.

A well-aimed "Crucio!" hit Harry's zig-zaging figure and he went down screaming. Another spell and he was tightly bound.

"Help," Harry screamed before gasping at the sign of the dark mark that hung in the darkness over Mrs. Figg's house. He screamed even more loudly as it was placed over his own before yet another spell sent him into an even more complete darkness.