Harry was in his room at the Cullen house reading his quidditch book when he heard a knock on the door. "Yeah?"
The door opened by Jasper. "Hey."
Harry looked up. "Hi.
"So Carlisle has asked me to tutor you in history. You ready to start?" Jasper asked.
"Now?" Harry asked with a groan. It was the summertime. No self-respecting teenager wanted to do schoolwork in the summer. Well, no but Hermione.
"No time like the present, little brother. Carlisle wants to get you back in school as soon as possible and he doesn't want you to be behind. Don't worry, it won't be so bad. Studying can be fun," Jasper said.
"You sound like a friend of mine," Harry said as he closed his book and reluctantly stood up.
"Come on," Jasper said chuckling before leading his brother out of the room and down the hall to his study.
Harry walked in to see a bunch of books piled on Jasper's desk. He winced. This was going to be a long day. Actually, it was going to be a long summer. He had the feeling that today was only a taste of what was to come later.
"So when exactly was the last time you studied actual academics in school?" Jasper asked. Carlisle had told him that it had been years, but he hadn't given him an exact age.
"Eleven," Harry answered.
Jasper winced a little. That meant they had five years to make up for in just a few months. That school was seriously inept. What kind of school cut off a kid's education like that? Teaching magic was great and all, but it didn't make up for a human education. To survive in the world, a person needed a good education. "And did you do well up to that point?"
Now it was Harry's turn to wince. "Well, not as well as I could've I guess. I went to school with me cousin and he was, shall we say, thick. He didn't do well in school and if I, as he would say, show him up, I'd get in a lot of trouble" He shifted uncomfortably and looked away as he said it. It was really hard for him to say all this to anyone. It made him feel really insecure.
Jasper didn't need his gift to feel the shame come off his brother in waves. It made him want to go to England and finish what Carlisle had started. It made him furious to know that Harry had suffered so much. No boy should be bullied into squashing his intelligence like that.
"I'm sorry. I guess this probably makes your job even harder," Harry said.
"It's not your fault. Don't ever apologize for something like that. As a child, you would do what the adults in your life taught you to do. It's just your bad luck that the adults in yours hindered your potential instead of encouraging it like they're supposed. And while it's true, this might make things a little harder, I like a challenge," Jasper said with a smirk.
Harry smiled back. He had been really trying not to like the Cullen's, but Jasper made it hard. They all did, but especially Jasper. Jasper was the one he could relate to the most. He didn't feel like he had to walk on eggshells around him and Jasper understood how he felt, partly because of his guilt and partly because he understood what it was like to suddenly be confronted with a new family and not know how to act around them.
"Okay, let's get started," Jasper said before going over to his desk and sitting down
Harry followed suit and sat down across from Jasper.
"Now, a lot of what I'm going to teach you isn't in any these books. See, the guys who wrote these books, didn't actually live during the time periods they write about. That means that they're basically repeating the things they were taught by others who didn't know what the hell they were talking about," Jasper said. If there was anything he hated, it was idiots telling myths about history. It made his blood boil just thinking about it.
"Don't take this the wrong way, but how do you know what's true and what's not?" Harry asked.
Jasper smirked. "Because I did live though many of those events. I fought in the Confederate Army before I died."
Harry gaped in shock. "You fought in the Civil War?!"
"So you do now some things."
"Well, who doesn't know about the Civil War? I can't believe you were part of the Civil War. That was centuries ago," Harry said in awe.
Jasper gave him a slightly amused look. "Are you calling me old? You know, technically, you're older than I am."
"Yeah, that's still weird to think about. I'm only sixteen, but I was technically born in the 1600s. It's just really strange," Harry said.
"Sorry if I brought something up that's hard to think about," Jasper said. He hadn't meant to upset the boy. He hadn't even really thought about it before he said it.
"It's okay. Out of everything that's happened, that's affected me the least," Harry said. Yes, it was very weird to think about, but so was having a vampire father who was over three hundred year old, and so was having a stepmother and brothers and sisters that were also vampires. But even with all that strangeness, the part that affected him the most was still finding out that his parents weren't who he thought he was and his father leaving him.
"Yeah, I know it's all still hard for you. It's gotten a little better though, hasn't it? I mean something good must have come from being here," Jasper said. He was hoping so anyway. He hoped Harry didn't feel completely miserable with his family.
"I feel safe here," Harry admitted. He never said it out loud before, but it was true. He never really felt truly safe before, especially after Voldemort returned. It was different with the Cullens though. He'd watched Carlisle take a spell and have it wash right over him. He'd seen what he'd done to Dumbledore. It was safe to assume that Voldemort would be just as powerless against the Cullens. It seemed all Harry really needed for protection was a family of vampires.
"I'm glad," Jasper said.
"I don't want to talk about this anymore," Harry said.
"Okay, let's get started," Jasper said before handing Harry a book and beginning the lesson.