A/N: Hi, just putting this story out there. If it gets a fair few replies I might continue writing more.
12 December 1980
James Potter frantically ran into his study room, he didn't have much time to write. He could see Death Eaters outside his house, a whole gang walking down the street, trudging through the heavy snow. They were coming for him. This would be the end of him. He had been betrayed but by whom he did not know.
He fumbled around for a spare piece of parchment and an inked quill. His owl surprised by his current behaviour. He was too preoccupied to even realise that he was crying in sorrow. This was the end of the story for him, after death he was sure nothing came after. He had always wanted to be a hero and this was what he would get.
Even when he was fully sent up to write what he needed to, he had trouble doing so. As much as he wanted to write, the words were difficult to place on the page.
He had to remind himself why he was doing this:
He didn't want his Death Eater distant cousins to inherit everything he owned, especially the invisibility cloak. He wanted to spite them.
It would be the last kind thing he would ever do.
It was his atonement.
Lily Evans had given birth to a son and she had made him the godfather. The girl whom he had loved for over nine years of his life and later rejected him had a son to a Death Eater. It wasn't her fault of course. As a muggle born she had trouble finding employment so she had to resort to lesser means to support herself once her parents had died and her hardhearted sister refused to help her. She was also willing to do certain things to gain information for the Order and by extension, to save the wizarding world. Lily was the bravest and kindest woman he had ever known. He owed it to her, and to her son.
She had named her new son Harry James Evans. The baby was named 'Harry' after his deceased grandfather and 'James' after his godfather. Everyone thought that the baby was his. James had gone along with this lie. He had never slept with her and even without Lily confessing, he knew who the father really was. The boy sadly took after his father, hopefully only physically.
He remembered the night when Lily had come to him crying. He opened the door expecting Sirius, Peter or Remus but was surprised when he saw Lily. She desperately needed help. She was living in poverty, pregnant and she didn't know what to do. He accepted her with open arms.
James was always a prankster and often bullied other students while at Hogwarts. He regretted a lot of his actions and when he had left Hogwarts, he desperately tried to make amends. One thing that got to James was that it was perhaps his actions that added to the reasons why the boy's father became a Death Eater in the first place. The boy wouldn't have a mother who had to whore herself to sustain the both of them. He hoped his godson would grow up to be happy and live in a world where there was no Voldemort or Death Eaters. This was how he would make amends to the man.
On the piece of paper he had forced himself to write:
'I, James Charlus Potter, leave everything I own to Lily Elizabeth Evans and Harry James Evans. He is our son. Goodbye. James Potter.'
Nobody would deny that Harry was his son now. He addressed the letter to Dumbledore, tied the letter to the leg of his owl and opened the window wide. Looking out the window, he noticed that his muggle neighbours had put up festive decorations. The muggles of Godrick's Hollow were good willed and accepting, just what Lily and her son needed from neighbours. He was reminded that this would be the boy's first Christmas and smiled, he could remember all the gifts his parents spoilt him with every Christmas.
The Death Eaters were banging at his front door now. He watched as his owl had flown out of sight before drawing out his wand and going to face the Death Eaters. There were too many of them to fight and he knew he would die, but he wasn't going to give up so easily.
…And so, James Potter died leaving Lily and her son a considerable fortune. The letter had reached Dumbledore before the Dark Mark had appeared above his dwelling. Wizarding society had accepted that James was Harry's father although he still had the ghastly stigma of being born illegitimate.
Life for Lily and her son had become slightly happier than it had been for a long time, until disaster happened. Voldemort had interpreted Harry as a part of the prophecy and set out to destroy him. Severus Snape tried to plea with the Dark Lord not to kill Lily as he still deeply loved her (he believed that Harry was the son of Potter). The result was Lily sacrificing herself for her son to live, Voldemort being temporarily vanquished and Snape becoming a permanent agent for Dumbledore.
Harry Evans became the famous 'the boy who lived' and celebrated as a hero for a reason he could not even remember. Magic society unknowingly accepted the lowly illegitimate son of a muggle born prostitute and a former Death Eater as their saviour.
Even at a young age, Harry Evans didn't know what to do with himself.
Harry was an unnatural looking boy. He had sullen black hair recklessly cut by his aunt with the guidance of a cooking bowl over his head. He was pale enough for people to regularly inquire whether he was ill. He had facial features overly serious for a boy. To make it worse, the baggy, worn hand-me-down clothes that came from his large cousin Dudley did nothing to help give him an air of normality. However, it was his striking almond-shaped green eyes and thunderbolt scar on his forehead that attracted the most attention. When people asked him how he had acquired such an unusual mark, he could only shrug.
Harry had lived with his aunt and uncle for most of his life and could not see any way around it. Living with the Dursleys was forbidding. His Uncle Vernon was a large man who cared nothing but his business success, his car and how his family compared with the neighbours. Aunt Petunia was blonde and horse looking with a long neck. There was something about Harry that made her face occasionally grimace in disgust, which was quite cruel and harsh for someone to do to their sister's child. Then there was his cousin Dudley Dursley whom Harry often compared to a fat pig in a blond wig, whom his guardians dotted on.
If you randomly walked into their home on 4 Privet Drive, you couldn't tell that another boy lived there if you didn't know otherwise. There were no pictures of him on the walls. There was no bedroom for him as he slept under the stairs.
He had hoped that he had other family who would whisk him away from them, but with age he eventually realised that nobody was coming for him. For some reason he had always hoped that it was his real father before realising that the man not only had nothing to do with his life, but probably didn't know he even existed.
Whenever he got into arguments with Dudley, Dudley's resolution to everything was the same:
"Dudley, I'm staying back at school late because I have to tutor little Louise Maple. I can't do your homework for you tonight."
"Dad will get really angry at you if you don't!"
"I don't care, he's always angry at me anyway. Besides, he'll be too preoccupied with his company dinner. So is your Mum."
"Well, your Mum was a drug addicted prostitute."
This would strike a sad chord within Harry, maybe because his mother really was a prostitute and had died from a drug overdose. The Dursleys would sometimes use it against him. He hated them as much as they hated him and had already decided to run away when he was old enough. Harry knew he was clever enough to make it in the world by himself, but life for him always didn't seem fair. For instance, why didn't they just put him up for adoption? Harry was sure there were plenty of families that would love a son, even one like him.
Harry liked school better than home. For a boy with such an unnatural appearance, he was reasonably well liked. Well, more liked than his bully of a cousin Dudley. Harry was the kind of boy who spent all recess in the library reading books, not just because it was refuge from bullies like Dudley and his gang, but because he genuinely liked reading. He like anything, from fiction to non-fiction, from sci-fi to some romance. He just liked books. Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia hated going to parent teacher meetings because all they would hear was 'Harry is a very bright and talented boy' and 'Dudley is a bully, dangerously overweight and underperforming'.
He wouldn't have to put up with Dudley at school for much longer anyway; Dudley would be attending Smeltings, the academy Vernon attended while Harry would be attending Stonewall High. Even though Stonewall was sure to be a shitty school and filled with bullies, Harry was determined to succeed. Over his school years, he had developed several methods of dealing with bullies.
Harry had only ever had a few friends, both of closer friends had left the school by the time he was ten. His best friend Emmy Weiss was a year older and her family had moved to London so she could attend an academically selective secondary school. His other best friend, Adam Freyson and his family moved back to Iceland a year ago. Harry remembered that he couldn't speak much English when he first arrived and Harry had helped him escape bullies. To Harry's anger and resentment, the Dursleys wouldn't let him have them as pen pals. It had been a very lonely school year.
He still got along with most of the over students though, even if they thought he was highly abnormal and some made an effort to avoid him. Harry didn't complain though, he was highly abnormal. Strange things would happen when he was upset, frightened, mad or sometimes just bored. He remembered he made the toy train that Dudley had received from Aunt Marge for his seventh birthday vanish into thin air; he didn't intend to do something so mean but when the woman who he was forced to call 'aunt' gave a packet of dog biscuits he just lost it. When Aunt Petunia had once shaved off all his hair, he found that it had grown back to the way it was overnight. Earlier that year, he had failed to explain to the principal why he had seemingly teleported himself on the school roof once when he was being chased by Dudley and his gang. Dudley's gang and other groups of bullies permanently left him alone after that. He was then after known as 'that freak Evans'.
In fact Harry's favourite memory had been caused by his strange abilities. Two years ago, he and Emmy were riding on her bicycle when a gang of high school students had turned up and threatened them. Harry had tried to outrun them but he found that it was extra difficult with Emmy on the back, holding on to him with her life. Suddenly, Harry found himself rising higher and higher. It was amazing. Emmy had started screaming at first but after being up high for a couple of minutes she had started to enjoy the view. She didn't seem scared of him. In fact, she told him that her younger sister Jenny did similar things and so did her cousin. It was a relief that he wasn't the only one.
All this changed one day when he would receive a letter in the mail…