Disclaimer: I don't own any part of HP, as much as I'd love to, but the plot's all mine. So if you know it, you know who's it is.
"You live your life with people who hate you, who are in awe of you and the few who actually love you . . . why is it that you never feel at home?"
Harry Potter Fan Fiction
On the 5th of August, James and Lily Potter's prays are answered. Harry must now deal with living in a world very different from his own. HG, AU.
Chapter One: When Wishes Come True
"You will not take him from me! I won't allow you to!"
A mother. Red hair. A lioness.
"Stand aside, silly girl, stand aside!"
A monster. A wand. Cruel laughter.
"Have mercy, please, have mercy!"
"And so, little Harry Potter, here you are. Unprotected."
Bright green eyes. Blood red ones.
"And here you end . . . avada kedavra!"
Lily sat up straight, the satin sheets around her twisting uncomfortably. She took a few deep breaths before leaning back into the numerous, soft pillows, wiping the sweat off of her face.
She turned to face her bleary-eyed husband, who rubbed the sleep from his eyes. He moved from his side of the bed and wrapped an arm around her, drawing her to his chest, as she shook visibly. The words of the nightmare still ran through her mind.
It was not, however, a nightmare. It was a memory.
She calmed down, her breathing becoming even. "It was the same as always," she whispered.
His grip tightened. "I never stop wishing I was there."
"I never stop wishing that he was here." She paused, her eyes far away. "I never stop wishing that no matter what kind of person he was or what he looked like or if he was an evil monster . . . I don't care. I just want to see him. My baby."
Their wish was sealed and considered. It was on this day that everything would change.
The date was the fifth of August.
Lily Potter walked through the halls of Hogwarts, her husband, James, at her side. Of course, no one wanting to face the wrath of her guards would call her Mrs Potter, or god forbid, Lily, unless they were close enough. She could name those people on one hand: James, Sirius, Remus and Petunia. Her three children called her mum and her nephew called her Aunt Lily, which wasn't the same.
It wasn't that she didn't want to be called by her name, it was just that it was improper. After all, the Queen of the British Magical Kingdom should be called nothing less than your Grace or your Majesty or your Highness or something along those lines. It was lucky, she thought, that only those of the magical bloodline were ever given royal titles; King, Queen, Prince, Princess and Duke or Duchess for the siblings of the King.
Lily knew a lot about the Order of the Phoenix—well, she knew everything there was available. Of all the statements made to her about it, the reports on the group and such, only a little was truly needed. It was headed by Albus Dumbledore and fought Voldemort. Voila.
Any group that fought against the terror that was Voldemort was worthy, she thought, but Dumbledore . . . she couldn't stand him. It was his fault her baby was dead, however indirectly. He told them not to leave the country, he said that he'd make sure her son was safe.
Her son was dead.
Taking her seat in the centre of the room; James at her side as always, their hands joined tightly; the guards stood to attention at the sides of the room; the Order members stood until they were properly seated; the meeting began.
She only half-listened to the information, her thoughts drifting back to the memory repeated in her dreams only the night before. The memory she tried so hard to forget. The death of her baby boy.
She wasn't childless, however. Alex and Annalie were both going to be sixth-years and Chloe had just finished her first-year, but nothing could replace the hole that would only be filled by the miracle of her baby coming back to her. Even Alex, who was in line for the throne, didn't want to take it up because he knew it was rightfully his brother's. That was her fault, hers and James, she knew, for reminding him unconsciously that Harry was their first born who should have been heir to the throne.
When they left the meeting, allowing Dumbledore to continue with it though they'd check up from time to time, Lily took James' hand and pulled him to the side.
"Let's go to the kitchens," she whispered.
He raised an eyebrow. "What? Lily, if you're hungry, we've got House Elves at home."
"I don't want to go home," she whispered. Home was where he'd died.
Sighing, James pulled her into a hug. "Okay," he agreed. He must have known the dream was still on her mind. He told the guards where they were going and they followed them to the kitchens.
"I think Chloe would've loved him," continued Lily, as they sipped the butterbeer. She hadn't had one in so long. "And Alex and Annalie . . . they would've got along perfectly."
"Oh come on, Lils," he said, grinning. "They're siblings—they would've fought like crazy."
"No they would not--"
"But moving on," he interrupted. "I think he would've been great at Quidditch."
She scowled. "Oh, really? Not a chance. Another sport-obsessed male in the house, no way. Your daughter is enough."
"Our daughter, Miss-If-She's-Trouble-She's-Yours-But-If-She's-An-Angel-She's-Mine." He took her deep breath as Lily laughed. "Anyway, did you just call Annalie a boy?"
"You know what I meant, James."
"Ah, but will she know that, hmm?"
"Let me through! I have important news, let me through!"
"Let her through, Gare," ordered Lily, watching as the teenager walked in and immediately curtsied.
"Your Highnesses," she said. "Professor Dumbledore says you need to come to the Hospital Wing without delay!"
Her thoughts still full of Harry and her baby death, Lily stood up and took James hand as they walked quickly to the Hospital Wing. Upon arriving, she saw the messy, short, black hair of a boy with his eyes closed.
"Alex," she whimpered. James' hand tightened around hers and she tried to sprint to his bedside. "Oh my ba—by . . ." she trailed off. This wasn't Alex. He was fifteen, not at least twenty as the man in front of her was.
"Did Alex take an ageing potion or something?" she asked the resident nurse, Madam Pomfrey.
But even as she said that, she knew it wasn't Alex. Alex had more of her features than James', but this stranger was the opposite. "Why is he hurt?" she asked instead.
"Who is he?" asked James, drawing her towards him. Subtly, the guards moved around them in a formation unknown to her, wands pointed at the unconscious boy.
"I am afraid I do not know, your Grace," said Dumbledore easily. "He appeared, without warning, on the grounds."
Hands around wands tightened and the guards looked ready to strike at a moment's notice. Instinctively, Lily left James' side despite protests and moved towards the bed.
"Lily, what are you doing?! He could be dangerous!"
She took a seat on the hospital bed, staring at his wounds. It made her want to cry for some reason she couldn't explain. She knew him. She didn't know how but she knew this boy. It was definitely a boy, not a man, she realised. Now she could see that in sleep, he looked almost peaceful—the weather-worn look he had just made him look older.
"We should let Poppy take care of him, James," she said softly.
James stared at her. "This could be a Death Eater, Lils! This could be someone who's here to hurt our children—to hurt Alex and Annalie and Chloe! And you--"
"I don't think he is."
"--want him to have medical . . . wait, what?"
Lily was gazing at the boy, fighting the urge to pull him towards her. She knew if she touched him the guards would act, they would take him away. He could be a potential risk, James would say. But she knew.
"Look at him, James," she whispered, her voice breaking. "Really look at him."
And he did. Her husband, father of her three—no, four children, looked at the boy. He drank in his facial features, his expressions, his positioning and suddenly . . . he knew too.
"Sweet Merlin," he murmured. "Gare, get Phyliss Coolgate here."
"Your Grace," interrupted Dumbledore, "we have our own potions master here. If you want Veritaserum--"
"Now," James instructed.
"Of course, your Highness," replied Gare and with a look, one of the guards scurried off.
James moved silently towards the bed. A guard moved a chair next to the bed at another look from Gare—their personal guard who could almost read James and Lily's minds, though not literally—and he sat down in it.
Lily reached for his hand, needing the comfort.
"May I ask what is going on?" said Dumbledore, looking slightly puzzled.
But that could all be for show, Lily reflected. She knew of Dumbledore's manipulative games and didn't want him here for this. Glaring into space, she spoke sharply. "I think it best you leave, Dumbledore."
She heard him sigh and her hand tightened around James'. She noticed the pressure came from both ways.
"Your Grace, I think that someone with my expertise is needed here."
She could almost see his grandfatherly expression, see the twinkle in his eyes . . . Her glare became murderous. Luckily, James spoke before she said something she regretted.
"My wife—the Queen—asked you to leave," said James, his voice like ice. "Gare, please show the Headmaster to the door. Also, can you ask for Nicholas to come here from the palace? I think his expertise is needed here."
Abruptly, Lily felt incredibly selfish. This was not just about her; it affected James just as much. For the first time, she pulled her gaze away from the boy—she didn't want to name him in case all of this was just dream that would never come true—and her eyes met his. Loving eyes of the one she married, the one she loved.
He put his arms around her. She breathed him in.
Dumbledore left reluctantly but the glares of the guards was enough to send him away. Lily heard him sigh once again and just as he reached the door, he declared, "I do think you are making a mistake, my dears." Both Lily and James looked up in shock and the wands pointed at the boy moved towards the Headmaster. "I have knowledge you could find useful . . . and some mistakes can be—what is the word?—ah, fatal."
For a moment, the only thing that reigned was silence. But for just a moment.
James jumped up. "HOW DARE YOU! How bloody dare you say that to us!" he screamed, enraged.
"I said nothing, mis--" he paused, obviously thinking better of it, "your Grace."
"Get out, Dumbledore!" hissed Lily. "You lost me my son almost eighteen years ago. I will do everything in my power to make sure you stay away from him."
There. She said it aloud. She implied he was alive, and from the intake of breath from James, she knew he had realised it too. The look in Dumbledore's eyes let her know he'd known all along; he'd only wanted her to admit it.
"Why, your Majesty," he said, sounding surprised but looking amused. "I do believe you insinuated that your son--"
"OUT!" bellowed James. One of the guards pushed Dumbledore from the room but before he shut the door, it opened to reveal two guards and their charges.
"Your Highness," said Gare unnecessarily, "Miss Coolgate and Mr Flamel have arrived"
"Miss Coolgate, we need some Veritaserum at once," ordered Lily, glancing at James and seeing he was still red with anger. "Nicholas, come closer and look at him."
He did and gasped. "My word, your Grace . . ."
Her eyes filled with tears. It wasn't just the imagination of two desperate parents wanting back their baby boy. Others could see it too.
"Is it possible?" she questioned quietly. "Is it really possible, Nicholas?"
Nicholas' face was pensive. "In all my years of study, I have read of only one case like this." She looked up. "It is possible that he has slipped through the wall that separates dimensions."
"Dimensions?" asked James.
"Yes," said Nicholas, nodding once. "There are theories, never proven but widely believed, that there are thousands, millions even, of parallel dimensions. I won't bore with an explanation but it is also thought, though again, never truly proven, that there are portals or entrances into other dimensions. It is possible that he slipped through one."
"Possible," echoed Lily.
"Again, there is no proof." He paused. "If I might suggest something?"
"Of course," Lily said, motioning to continue.
"Veritaserum may be passed with new technology; it is not certain but possible. There is a blood ritual which cannot be fooled nor tricked for it would be death to do so. It comes from the Goblins and would give the true identity of the . . . er, boy here," he posed.
"What does it include?" asked James, his expression unreadable. She felt the same. Blood rituals, especially Goblin ones, could get messy—literally.
"A special ritual knife would cut five important points and collect a vial of blood from each. The forehead, where our magical core is; each pulse, where we feel the beat of our heart above the surface; the left shoulder blade, a magical creatures' universal point of respect and honour when touched by the right hand, and the right ankle, for reasons unknown," Nicholas finished.
"I apologise to interrupt, your Majesties," ventured Miss Coolgate, "but I have the Veritaserum."
"Put three drops on his tongue," instructed James, grabbing again Lily's hand as they watched the drops fall. With a slightly shaky hand, he raised his wand and whispered, "Ennervate."
His eyes opened. The room erupted with gasps. He had her eyes, Lily saw, just like the baby she'd lost. It was like looking into the mirror. A deep, shining emerald, albeit unfocused, looked up at her. She couldn't speak.
Nicholas seemed to realise this and asked firmly, "What is your name?"
Breaths were held.
Silence. Lily didn't move to wipe the tears that were falling onto her cheeks.
"How did you get here?" continued Nicholas, his voice slightly croaky in surprise.
"I fell through the veil in the Department of Mysteries."
"A portal . . ." murmured Nicholas before turning to Lily and James. "I'm sorry," he said sincerely, "but I have to ask. Are you a Death Eater?"
Relief, though not so much since Lily didn't believe that her baby would side with that monster. Not even in another dimension.
"Do you support Voldemort in any way?"
"How did you injure yourself like this?" whispered James, his voice pained. Lily felt the same way. This was their son and he was responding.
"Death Eaters decided to avenge their master." Even in monotone, there was venom when he said the word master. "I managed to escape capture after three days."
It was then that she noticed the extent of his wounds; one on his chest was bleeding rather heavily and slipping through the black, battle robes; his arm looked half-mangled; his voice was raspy. And the robes, she knew, hid the rest of his injuries . . . how many were there?
"Nicholas, the ritual," said James hurriedly. "He needs medical attention and quickly."
Nicholas took a ritual knife from his pocket and five vials. "I came prepared," he said. He cut his right ankle first, next his shoulder, then both wrists and finally his forehead, filling the vials with blood. Lily felt sick at the sight of so much of her baby's blood. How much was already spilled?
A gold basin appeared on the bedside table and Nicholas poured the vials in, chanting something quietly. Colours appeared to swirl above it and there were a few flashes of light. He dipped a quill into the basin and set it onto a sheet of parchment. After a moment, it began to write a name in blood.
Harry James Potter
It was him. It was well and truly him. Wanting to embrace him, she immediately turned to Poppy—under a vow of patient confidentiality—and said, "Heal him. Please."
Lily sat by the bed, legs underneath her, like she used to sit while waiting for James to come home. She wasn't allowed to be an Auror and she got some sweet satisfaction from the fact that he wasn't either. But no, James would leave with the royal military, like the Aurors though a step up, in fact, and sometimes get back late. And Lily would sit in the lounge in the same position until he arrived back from whatever raid or battle and then make sure that he got the medical attention he needed—men were so stubborn about things like that.
Herself, Lily was a good dueller, not the best but not bad. James, she admitted, was much better. She spent most of her time creating new potions and charms and studying rare texts, since Queens didn't work. It made her wonder what life would have been like if she hadn't become Queen.
She'd thought she was muggleborn for her entire life until eighteen, when she and James wanted to marry. She knew that he was the Prince and that this might be impossible so they set about trying to find some kind of loophole when . . . a miracle occurred. Or maybe not so.
She was a pureblood. Her parents were both pureblood squibs who wanted nothing to do with the magical world and had left it. That made her sister a pureblood squib and surprisingly, knowing she had magical blood but no magic had made Petunia more accepting of the magical world and mended the bridges. Lily's parents however . . . Lily now spoke to them rarely. It was hard to forgive.
His eyes were closed, those two emerald orbs that were identical to her own. His skin was pale from blood-loss and his cuts and bruises healed, the biggest still healing along with two crushed ribs, and his arm was setting. There were many potion vials sitting next to her and Lily had memorised the times they were to be taken.
She hadn't let go of his hand, not when they were moving him to the palace and into what was to be his bedroom; not when Claire, the royal Healer, was healing him. She'd left for the bathroom but for nothing else, hardly eating what was brought up.
It'd been three days. James had stayed for the first but business called and he was forced to leave, though he was always popping in to check on them both. Harry, Lily decided. It was time to call him Harry.
Her baby would wake up that evening. She would have to get used to thinking of him as a boy, not a baby. He was nineteen and no longer the fifteen-month-old child she'd last seen.
Chloe walked in. Her children had been excited though nervous at the prospect of meeting their older brother, Alex the most. This was the second time today Chloe had come to visit her and Harry.
There. She thought it.
"Hey mum," said Chloe, giving her a hug. "How is he?"
"His vitals are good," replied Lily, giving her daughter a small smile. "He'll be waking up this evening, according to Claire."
Chloe's eyes followed the collection of potions. "How many potions are there?"
Tears came to Lily eyes.
"Aw, mum, I didn't want to make you cry," groaned Chloe. "Sorry."
"No, dear, it's fine," said Lily, a chuckle lodged in her throat. "He's just ill, that's all. Like when your dad got back from the Manchester raid five years ago."
She'd never been so scared in her life when the guards brought James home in a stretcher, unconscious and hardly breathing. Not until now.
"Oh," understood Chloe. She was such a sweet girl, mused Lily.
"Chloe, have you seen my—oh! Mum!" Annalie spotted her mother by the bed. She stood by the door. "Hey. How's Harry?"
She'd said it aloud. Lily couldn't believe it, though the name sounded wonderful to her ears. And it wasn't too long until he woke up.
"He's okay," she whispered.
Annalie nodded. "Okay, well, I'll check back later. Chloe, give me a hand with something, please."
The two girls left, leaving Lily in peaceful silence. Annalie knew she wasn't in the mood for conversation; her eldest daughter always could read her well.
Seconds turned into minutes and minutes into hours. James came and went, Claire popped in, Alex said hello and one of the House Elves brought her lunch. Then she heard a moan.
Her eyes snapped to his face, where his lips were moving ever slightly as he murmured illegible things to himself during sleep. His eyes opened without warning and Lily noticed one difference between hers and his; his were darker in pain and what she guessed was grief. They switched from the ceiling to her. She didn't move. And then, moving automatically, his wand was out and he was crouched in a defensive position on the floor.
Unfortunately, she gave a small scream in shock and fear—not of him, but at him injuring himself. Sure enough, the slash on his chest had been ripped open once again.
Unfortunately, a guard happened to be passing the open door at that moment.
Unfortunately, he pressed a button on his belt that let the others know there was an attack on a member of the royal family.
And then . . . utter chaos.
He was a good dueller, she reflected, viewing the guards fight. Amazing, even. It made her feel proud as she watched from behind the guard in front of her. A cutting curse hit her baby and she felt rage hit her, pushing past the guard and ignoring his cry of, "your Highness!"
She dodged the spells coming from both ways until she was in front of Harry, shielding him. No one was going to hurt her baby. The guards immediately stopped firing.
Harry's wand pressed against her neck and he held her roughly with one hand. She gasped in shock.
Buttons were pressed by the guards. James walked past them to the front, his eyes wide in fear.
"Harry--" he began.
"What the fuck is going on?" His voice—Harry's voice—was low and angry, though with an undercurrent of pain.
"Harry, please, we know you're confused but we can explain," pleaded James. "Let her go."
"Let her go?" echoed Harry. He chuckled humourlessly. "Why would I let a Death Eater go?"
"A Death Eater? We're your--"
"Don't you dare," hissed Harry. James took a step forward. Harry's arm tightened around her, the wand digging into her neck. She fought a flinch.
"Your Majesty," said Gare.
"No," growled James. "Harry--"
"Majesty?" interrupted Harry, and Lily could almost see his eyebrow was raised. "What is this? Some kind of Death Eater thing? If you're the King, does that make you Malfoy or Lestrange or . . . Snape. Of course, this must be Bella."
"You don't have a monarchy in your world?" asked James.
"The monarchy died out in 1800s; Hermione made me revise it for the OWLs." His grip tightened even more. "If you are Malfoy, your death will not be pleasant, I warn you now."
"Harry, when you slipped through the veil, you appeared in another world," explained James."I know you're scared but, tell me how you'll believe us and we'll do it."
The tense silence stretched for at least fifteen seconds, then . . . "Let me through."
"What?" asked James, before he understood and allowed Harry to do whatever it was. It took Lily a short time to work out what was going on and then she gasped. Legilimency.
After a few minutes, both drew back and Harry swore under his breath. James' eyes were filled with pain.
"Oh my god," she heard him murmur. "Shit, only me, only fucking me." She felt him move to let her go but one of the guards misinterpreted his action and fired a curse at him. Her baby collapsed. Lily screamed.
James ran towards them, one arm around Lily, the other cradling Harry's head.
Lily wouldn't let go of Harry's hand.
So . . . what did you think? I wasn't going to post this but I thought--why not? Anyway, please review and thanks for reading. If you've got a minute, check out What We Became, which is a Gossip Girl fic, on my profile . . . somewhere.