I love the father figure/uncle relationship that Harry and Lupin have and was a bit sad it wasn't played out more in the films as much as it was in the books. This fanfic will explore a more in depth look at their friendship. My first Harry Potter fanfic! Reviews are appreciated! I do not own anything Harry Potter related or any of the characters.
Professor Lupin had come back. He paused as he entered, looked around, and said, with a small smile, "I haven't poisoned that chocolate you know . . ."
Harry took a bite and to his great surprise felt warmth spread suddenly to the tips of his fingers and toes.
"We'll be at Hogwarts in ten minutes," said Professor Lupin. "Are you all right, Harry?"
Harry didn't ask how Professor Lupin knew his name.
"Fine," he muttered, embarrassed. (Prisoner of Azkaban)
Harry took another bite of the chocolate Lupin had given him and ran a hand through his hair. He wondered how it was that this man knew his name. It seemed quite odd to him that a perfect stranger was aware of who he was. But then again . . . it seemed like everyone knew who he was. Yes, that must be it. Harry thought to himself. This man only knows who I am because . . . because, well, of who I am. Harry sighed disappointedly. He was tired of everyone knowing who he was all the time. He was sick of everyone knowing more about him than he even knew about himself. He was tired of being Harry Potter sometimes.
Harry looked up to the man with a slight smile as he took another bite of the chocolate, and to his surprise, the professor was staring back at him with gentle, yearning eyes. And then an odd sensation came over Harry, and as he looked at the professor~ his warm green eyes, his ruffled, graying hair, his friendly smile~ he couldn't help but feeling that this man wasn't a stranger at all. Something about him seemed familiar. That's ridiculous. Harry thought to himself. I have never seen this man before in my life . . .have I?
Harry quickly looked away from the man and brushed away any thoughts of having known him. The professor, however, still looked upon Harry with adoring eyes, and Harry could still see him staring at him out of the corner of his eyes. He shuddered at the idea.
It was silent for a few more seconds before anyone else spoke. It was Hermione who started to talk. "So . . .Professor" She began shyly as she looked from Harry to Lupin, " . . .you're the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher?"
Lupin only half heard the girl, for he was too focused on the boy sitting across from him. His similarities to James were uncanny, and for a split second Lupin let himself pretend that he was a thirteen year old child again, traveling along the Hogwarts Express with his best friend. But of course, the nostalgia faded, and reality came back to him.
"Yes" Lupin nodded, breaking eye contact with Harry for the first time in minutes to look at the girl. "I am. My name's Remus Lupin" He said with an outstretched hand toward the girl.
"Hermione Granger" She said as she took his hand and blushed.
"Ron Weasley" Ron said when Lupin extended his hand to him.
"Ha~" Harry started when Lupin turned to him, but Lupin cut him off.
"Harry Potter" He said with a smile. "I know"
Harry took Lupin's hand and sighed out again disappointedly. He really was tired of being famous. Some people thought it was great. He just thought it was a burden.
Lupin gripped Harry's hand tightly with both of his own, and Harry thought that the professor had held his hand longer than he had Ron and Hermione's. And those eyes. His eyes kept gazing at him with such . . . familiarity. No. Harry shook it off. I don't know him.
After gripping hands for several seconds longer than needed, Lupin broke the handshake reluctantly. Harry pulled his hand back slowly and tried to swallow the urge to ask the man whether they had met before.
Ron and Hermione gave each other a meaningful glance as if to say 'what is going on with them', and clearing his throat Ron sought to clear the tension.
"You better watch out" Ron spoke with a slight chuckle as he directed his glance to Lupin, who was still looking at Harry, "the last two DADA professors didn't work out so well" Ron said with a grin.
Lupin, turning to look at Ron grinned as well, and so did Harry. Hermione hit Ron with the book in her hands, glaring at him as she did so.
"What!" Ron said as he jumped away from Hermione out of fear of being smacked with the book again. "I'm just telling him the truth!"
Hermione sighed in frustration, and Lupin chuckled. "It's quite alright." He nodded.
And as Hermione scolded Ron even more for his rude behavior, Lupin couldn't help but let his eyes drift back toward Harry. Even if he wasn't James, he was his son. And Lily's. He was part of them. Part of his best friends. Lupin's smile grew bigger as he observed the boy laughing at his friends' actions.
Lupin had loved the boy ever since he was brought home by Lily and James. He had visited him all the time and babysat him when Lily and James desired a night out. Honestly, he loved the boy like his own relative, and had always vowed to be there for him.
But now, here he sat, looking at the thirteen year old boy that he had not seen in twelve years. His smile faded and his eyes drooped. When Harry needed me the most, I wasn't there. Lupin thought to himself. He needed someone, he needed family, and I wasn't there.
Of course it wasn't from lack of trying. Lupin had tried to visit the boy numerous times, and even gain custody. But the blood protection he received from living with his aunt and uncle, was far more than would have been provided had he lived with Lupin, as difficult as that was for Lupin to accept. And being a werewolf, well . . .the Ministy of Magic wasn't too keen on letting him spend time with Harry Potter.
Still, Lupin could not help but think of how he had failed the boy in not being there for him. He thought of how Harry's life could have been different. How his own life could have been different, had he been allowed to have contact with his best friends' son. He wanted that more than anything in the world. That connection. That bond that he had once shared with the infant.
Lupin watched as the boy laughed at a joke Ron had made. He saw how his eyes lit up. Lily's eyes. Lupin thought to himself. They sparkled with happiness, just like hers. Lupin smiled more.
He watched as Harry ruffled up his hair, and Lupin almost laughed out loud at the thought of James doing the same thing. He couldn't believe how like his parents he was.
The train started to slow and the four people in the compartment knew that they were pulling into Hogwarts. The three children stood up just as the train was coming to a stop and reached atop the shelves for their luggage. Lupin too, started to stand. And as the train came to a final stop, Ron opened the compartment door.
Ron and Hermione slipped out with a quick, "Good to meet you sir" but Harry halted in front of the professor. Maybe it was the overwhelming sense of familiarity Harry felt toward this man, or maybe it was just the way in which this teacher seemed different from all the others- cool and fun~ or perhaps even by just merely being polite, but Harry stopped in front of him.
That feeling that he had seen this man before came over him again, and Harry tried to brush it aside. Lupin watched and had to restrain from blurting out everything and hugging the boy right there.
Harry stuck out his hand and Lupin took it and shook it firmly, looking Harry in the eyes as he shook his hand. As soon as he touched this man, the overwhelming feeling that he knew him increased so much it was almost confirmed.
"It was great to meet you sir" Harry said. "I look forward to learning from you this year."
"Me too, Harry" Lupin said with a smile.
He was finally going to get his chance to be there for the boy he promised he'd always be there for. The opportunity to once again become a part of Harry's life and more importantly, for Harry to become a part of his, overjoyed Lupin. The two exited the train together and Lupin's heart grew warmer as he thought of all the time he would get to spend with Harry this year.
The feast in the Great Hall the first night at Hogwarts was delicious. There was an abundance of everything from turkey to potatoes to pudding, and Harry made sure he had some of all of it. He loved Hogwarts and he missed it over the summer. He had missed the food too. The meals he received at the Dursley's~ or what the Dursely's liked to pretend where meals for him~ never really filled him up. This however, was the only time that Harry felt well fed~ at Hogwarts.
Helping himself to another plate of pudding, Ron looked toward Harry. He flicked his head in the direction of the teacher's table, caught eyes with Hermione, and then continued.
"So Professor Lupin . . ." Ron started in a tone that was halfway between a statement and a question.
Harry looked toward Ron and then Hermione. "What about him?" Harry said softly, as he shoved some more potatoes in his mouth. He shrugged slightly, hoping that his friends would not be able to detect his confused emotions about this man. And as the overwhelming feeling that he knew Professor Lupin came over him again, he couldn't help but glance quickly at the teacher's table.
Ron looked to Hermione for help. "Well . . ." she started unsurely, "it just seems like you guys . . ." she looked quickly to Ron and then back to Harry, as if asking him to jump in, but Ron remained quiet. " . . .had a . . .connection."
Harry nearly chocked on the potatoes he was trying to swallow and grabbed his goblet of juice quickly and took a few sips. Great. He thought to himself. Have I been that obvious? I thought I had brushed it off without anyone noticing.
Harry looked to Ron and Hermione after swallowing his juice. "What?" He tried to sound surprised. "I don't know what you're talking about." He lied.
Hermione looked at Harry with her brow furrowed and her lips pursed. Ron simply cocked his head and grinned. "Don't lie to us Harry." Hermione said. "It was quite obvious."
Harry wanted to tell them how he was feeling. He just didn't want to sound like an idiot. He really didn't even know why he was keeping it from them. Maybe he just wanted to keep it private so that it could still be an idea. What if he voiced his feelings about having once known Professor Lupin and Hermione reasoned with him (like she did always) and convinced him that he hadn't. He didn't want that. He wanted to still have that feeling of having known him, because if he still had the feeling then it was still a possibility that he actually had known him. And having known him when he was a baby meant a lot to Harry. Maybe this man had once met his parents, and maybe the professor could tell Harry about them. No. He didn't want to be reasoned with. Not now.
Harry looked to Ron for some help, but Ron merely looked to Harry with the same eyes that Hermione did. Harry sighed out deeply. "I don't know" He said. "He just . . . seems familiar" Harry uttered softly.
"Familiar?" Hermione questioned right away. "Well . . .what do you mean?" She said quickly. "Surely you haven't met him before, have you?"
She had started already. Harry bit his tongue. "I . . .I don't know, Hermione." He shrugged. "I just know that he seems familiar."
Hermione crinkled her face in concentration, and Ron narrowed his eyes. "That doesn't make any sense" Hermione said after a few seconds.
"It does to me" Harry said quickly, and perhaps a bit more angrily than he had meant.
Hermione eyed him carefully and then glanced to Ron who was looking back at her with confused eyes again. Ron shrugged and gulped down some more pudding, and after some urging, Hermione did the same.
Harry was happy that they had dropped the subject. He hadn't really wanted to bring it up in the first place because he wasn't even sure what he was feeling toward Professor Lupin. Maybe it was familiarity, but maybe it wasn't. He wasn't sure. All he knew was that he was curious to find out more about him. Harry took another sip from his cup and looked back toward the teacher table, and thought he saw Lupin looking at him before quickly turning away. No. Harry thought. It was just coincidence.
Several more minutes had gone by, and the feast was almost over by now. Students started leaving and heading toward their common rooms, and Harry, Ron, and Hermione were soon getting up from the table themselves.
Hermione caught Harry glancing back toward Lupin as they left the Great Hall and said, "He was looking at you all during dinner you know."
"What?" Harry asked her, having only half been listening. He turned back around slowly, reluctantly breaking his gaze from his search for Lupin.
"Professor Lupin" Hermione said with a grin. "He kept looking toward you."
Harry grinned sarcastically and cocked his head. "Yea, okay Hermione." He said.
"He was!" Hermione said defensively, looking to Ron to back her up.
"Its true" Ron said as they exited the Great Hall and started toward the stairs. "I looked up a few times and saw him starring at us~ you actually. Kind of weird."
The overwhelming feeling inside Harry started to grow again. Happiness filled him as well. Maybe he had actually known this man. But why wouldn't he have said anything? Harry thought to himself.
"And he did clasp your hand for an excessively long time when we were on the train." Ron reminded Harry as they entered the Gryffindor common room. "Maybe he did actually know you." Ron shrugged.
Hermione nodded. "I have to admit that Professor Lupin's behavior was rather odd around you."
Harry turned to look at her and she grinned. "I mean . . .it was like he wanted to tell you something but, I don't know, couldn't." She shrugged. "He was definitely looking at you as if you were some prized possession that he had lost and only recently found."
Harry knew this definitely didn't mean anything. People looked at him all the time like he was a superhero~ people he didn't even know. But having Ron and Hermione having had noticed this behavior as well, made him grow more excited at the idea that Lupin had once known Harry.
"Well . . .I'm going to bed." Hermione said as she headed for the girl's dormitories. "I'm tired."
Harry and Ron nodded. Hermione was already halfway up the stair when she came back down quickly. "We'll talk more about this tomorrow" She said pointing a finger at Harry as if threatening him.
Both boys nodded. "See you tomorrow"
"Goodnight" Hermione said, and once again went up the stairs.
Harry and Ron looked at one another with a meaningful look as they walked up the stairs to their own dormitories.
"So you think you really actually knew him?" Ron asked.
"I don't know." Harry said as he sat down on his bed. "It feels like . . ." He tried to think of how to explain it to Ron. " . . .it feels like when you have a word you want to use but you can't think of it, or an answer that's right on the tip of your tongue. Or even when you forget what you were going to say, and you're trying to remember it. It feels like I maybe once knew Professor Lupin, but I don't even know if its true. And I don't know when, or how, or why."
Ron squinted his eyes. "Sounds annoying." He said as he pulled the covers over himself.
"It is annoying" Harry said quickly. "Its weird. I feel like I know him . . .but I don't at the same time. I mean, where would I have met him before? Certainly not at the Durseley's." Harry said with a frustrated tone. "And before I lived with the Durseley's I was too young to remember anything, right?" Harry asked looking over at Ron.
Ron shrugged. "I don't know. Maybe you remember the vague, little, things." He twisted in his bed. "Maybe that's why you're not sure whether you know him or not."
Harry shook his head. "Maybe."
Harry reached over and placed his glasses on his bedside table. He pulled the covers up and lay on the comfortable mattress- much more comfortable than the one at the Durseley's.
"Well . . ." Ron said, "I'm thinking you should ask him."
Harry twisted so he could face Ron. "Ask him?" Harry said with such a tone that implied he thought Ron was insane.
Ron shrugged at Harry's reaction. "Why not?"
"Why not?" Harry said forcefully, "Because I'm sick of people looking at me like I'm crazy all the time. I don't want to sound like an idiot in front of him, that'd be one more person to think I'm insane."
Ron sighed. "But what if you're right."
"But what if I'm wrong?" Harry sighed a bit disappointedly. He wanted to be right so badly, so badly indeed that he didn't think he could bear being wrong. Not about this. He felt as if it would simply break his heart.
Ron could sense this and waited a few seconds before speaking, trying to find something to say. "You won't know unless you ask him, mate." He shifted in his bed. "Wouldn't you rather know than not?"
Harry considered this for a moment. I don't know. He thought to himself. Should I take the risk of not having this connection anymore by asking him and finding out my suspicions are false. Or should I keep this suspicion continuing and convince myself that I do know him just so that I don't have to find out that I'm wrong. Harry shifted in his bed.
"You're right." He said softly. "If I never ask him, then I'll never know either way. For all we know, he could have known me. And me not asking, would just be a waste of time."
"There you go!" Ron said cheerfully, and Harry had the impression that if they had been at the dinner table or in the common room- somewhere closer together- then Ron would have clapped him on the back.
Harry nodded. And for several seconds the boys were quiet. Harry presumed that Ron thought he had fallen asleep, and he figured Ron was thinking that Harry thought he was asleep as well. But he had been best friends with Ron for two years now, and he knew he was still awake.
"Its just . . ." Harry started hesitantly, and Ron knew to let him wait and finish instead of trying to interrupt. "It's just . . . this connection . . . this feeling I get when I see Professor Lupin, it's like this familiar sensation overwhelms me… and I . . .I can't help but think that if he knew me then . . .well, he definitely knew my parents." Harry said slowly. "I think I'm so scarred of being wrong because this connection that I feel to him now . . . whether its real or not . . .represents the only real link to my parents. He might have known them. He could tell me about them." Harry was silent for a few seconds, and even though Ron was as well, he could tell that he was still listening. "I don't want to lose that."
Ron remained quiet for a few more seconds. "I know." He said comfortingly. "I know that you want a connection to your parents, and I don't know what its like, but I can imagine it'd be pretty unbearable to finally think you've found one and then have it ripped away."
Harry nodded and Ron shrugged. "But I still think you should talk to him, Harry. And if its any help at all in making you talk to him, I noticed that he acted weird around you . . . like he couldn't stop looking at you. And that's me talking, Mr. Oblivion." Ron chuckled.
Harry looked at him with a glance that said 'everyone looks at me like that', and picking up on it, Ron refuted it immediately. "No. This is different, mate. I can't describe it . . . but its not like all the usual onlookers. His eyes . . .their genuine. You can practically see the care he has for you pouring out of them. It's like Hermione said, he looked at you like you were some prized item he'd lost and only just found."
Harry felt reassured my Ron's comment, however he still felt anxious about approaching Professor Lupin.
"Thanks, mate." Harry said as he turned over in his bed. Pulling the overs up more.
"For what?" Ron asked as he did the same.
"For listening" Harry said softly. Ron grinned. "Any time."
And as the boys drifted off to sleep, Harry couldn't help but think of Professor Lupin and the strange connection he felt to him. He tried to think of how he would talk to him about it, maybe ask him if he felt the same way. He wasn't sure. But right then he was tired, and he drifted off to sleep before he could fully figure out his plan to approach Professor Lupin.