Hi! I loved the response for 'Her Choices'! Thought you deserved a little early surprise!
Here you go! I hope you love it!
I have not put it under the crossover archive, but if you have any problems, tell me.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the works of JKR on Harry Potter. (Except the change in plot. I own that right?)
Words – 2412
Elsa giggled. She turned in her spot on the picnic blanket to call her two sisters, Leila and Sanya. The three four year old girls stared at the ten year old boy who was sitting alone at the edge of the park. They always saw him when they came to Crescent Park with Mummy. She was talking on the phone to Auntie Tess and Leila got up and ran to him. Elsa and Sanya followed her.
The black haired boy looked up from his book and stared at the three girls.
"Hi!" Leila chirped. The boy nodded and continued reading.
"I like you hair." She said.
Harry looked up and blinked. They had this conversation nearly every day.
"Yes. I know." Harry said.
The girls sat around him and stared at him till he shut his book and asked, "What do you want now?"
"Will you pway with us?" Sanya asked in a small voice. Harry had always intimidated her.
"Why not?" Elsa asked pouting.
"But…but you not have scwool!" Sanya said.
"No, I don't have to go to school this month. I'm not going to tell you how many mistakes your sentence had because you're too young to understand. It's the Summer holidays and I'll be going to a new school in September. I told you that."
"Oh. Will you pway with us?" Elsa asked and Harry shook his head. It was getting dark and he had to go back home to get Dudley's dinner ready.
"See you tomorrow?" Leila asked.
Harry shrugged, "May be."
The girls pouted and looked up at him through their eye lashes. Their large bright blue eyes started to shine with crocodile tears. Sanya brushed back her light brown hair which she shared along with her sisters and bit stuck out her lower lip. Harry sighed, "I'll try to."
"Bye." He took his book and ran towards the forest wall to climb over the gate. He ran faster and felt like he was flying. Jumping over the river and the rocks that came into his path, he finally reached the gate.
He never opened it. Harry would always climb over the rusty rickety gate, making sure that it would never creak when he did so.
He opened the kitchen door and went in to see Dudley sitting much too close to the TV.
He kept his book on the table. Opening the fridge to take out the dinner to reheat it, Harry said, "You want to destroy your eyes?"
"Shut up. I'm hungry."
"Well, one day you'll be eating blind." Harry said casually knowing full well that you couldn't lose eyesight by staring at the screen from that distance, but it was amusing to see Dudley scramble to the couch, breathing hard as if he had escaped a grueling fight.
The smell of dinner really started wafting through the house and Dudley yelled for him to get it soon.
Harry looked back through the kitchen window, ignoring Dudley. He felt someone's stare at him and saw the little boy in House no. 3.
Actually no one lived there anymore. Any time, a family would move in, they'd run away screaming that it was haunted. The neighbourhood stayed away from the accursed building. If anyone got to close to it…
Well, let's just say that it didn't end well.
People had once come with huge machines to break down the house. But every time that happened, the machinery would stop working. Either the parts would crumble and break, or the engine would get corroded, or it would start raining so heavily that people couldn't see their hands in front of their faces. Some actually felt that there was something supernatural going on around the house.
Last year, a group of boys had sent a dog into the house. Harry had seen it from his maple tree. The small dog was pushed in through a broken window. For a few seconds, the dog's barking was heard. Then it let out a loud bark and a series of yelps and squealing were heard. The silence which followed was enough to guess the dog's fate.
Harry knew that there was something inside. That something was a small boy whose description fit the one Percy had said from his dream. At times the child would stare at Harry as if contemplating his fate. Whatever the child was, it was not friendly.
Harry blinked and the boy disappeared. Trying to calm his pulse, he walked up to his room, his stomach rumbling. He had only a few fruits under the bed and knew that he should have restocked them yesterday. Sitting on his small bed, he looked at the photo on his night stand.
He was four. Sally had her arms around him and Percy as they were sitting in the water on Cristy Beach. The three of them grinned in a way, that Harry felt that it was impossible to achieve such a level of happiness. He took the frame and stared at the photo through the glass which was coated with a layer of dust. He hadn't touched it for nearly a week.
He felt his chest get heavy and put back the photo. He leaned back, taking an orange from below the mattress and bit into it, the sheath, fruit and all.
It would be three years this Halloween. Three years since he had heard from them at all. At times Harry wondered whether it was all a great unbelievable dream that a woman and her son had come and saved him. He felt his bracelet through his sleeve and flicked his wrist to let the dagger come into his grip.
"Skothos." He murmured. The blade reflected a part of his face. His green eye was a little dull in the reflection. Twirling the dagger by the handle, he closed his eyes, remembering the intense training of the two months before they had left. He and Percy were very good at it. Not as good as Mum, but she had been proud and had kissed him when he perfectly destroyed a mannequin they had found in another part of the forest.
The feeling of her lips brushing across his hair felt far. He let out a shaky breathe and put the dagger back into his bracelet with a practiced move. The charm glowed for a second before fading.
Harry turned to the mirror and saw himself. His reflection stared back at him and said, "You'd think, they would at least write to you. May be they already forgot about you."
"Shut up." Harry growled. His reflections were so annoying!
Sleep never took Harry. Most nights, he'd stay awake listening to the sounds of the forests or thinking about everything he had done and seen for the day. It was about six in the morning and Harry decided that he couldn't waste anymore time.
He got up and stretched. Touching his fingers to his toes, without bending his knees, bending backwards to touch his head to the ground and doing a few back-flips was a routine. His hand nearly missed the shelf and he let out a breath. His room was much too small for these stunts. He'd go into the forest.
Taking a ten minute bath, after returning from the forest was to remove all evidence that he had been there.
He had just rubbed his hair with his small towel when someone pounded on his door. He immediately stuffed the old newspapers under his bed, lest they saw it. The Dursleys didn't like it when he read the paper or watched the news.
"Get out, freak. You better make pancakes before you're toast! Hah!" Dudley's loud voice rang through the house. Harry gritted his teeth. Dudley was way too happy. Wanna know why? It was his birthday. One of the worst days in the world. Right on the top along with Harry's.
Dumping the towel, he went down to the kitchen and received a stiff look from his Aunt. "Don't burn them."
Uncle Vernon glared at him and said, "How many times did I tell you to comb your hair?!"
More than 57 times, Harry thought but felt it wise not to tell him that. As picturesque as it would've been to see his uncle's face go red, he would still be grounded. Although, he was grounded nearly once a week (which was an improvement from a daily basis), he had no wish to chat with danger.
Dudley slammed the door of his room, where he had run back into before and rushed to the kitchen.
"There's the birthday boy! The handsomest cutie pie in the world!" Petunia threw her arms around him and kissed his head. Harry looked away.
She clapped her bony hands over Dudley's eyes and led him into the dining room.
"I want everything to be perfect on my Ickle Diddykins' special day!"
Uncle Vernon smiled proudly and kept his newspaper down.
Aunt Petunia removed her hands with a flourish to show her son the large dining table over flowing with gifts and wrapped packages and huge boxes. He stared at them all and his smile fell. Harry flipped the pancakes onto the four plates.
"How many are there?" he said angrily.
"37. I counted them myself." Uncle Vernon said proudly, but Harry could detect a hint of fear.
"37! But last year I got 38!" Dudley shouted.
Harry sat down with his plate and added a little syrup, watching the soap opera in front of him. Normally soaps weren't his thing, but this show was free and he could watch it live.
"Most of them are bigger than last year –"
"I don't care how big they are!"
"Now, now Popkin. When we go out today, we'll get you two more, presents. How's that? Two more." Aunt Petunia said. Harry rolled his eyes. If they went at this pace, the house would be pack with gifts by the time Dudley was thirteen.
"So that's… uh…"
Harry finished his pancakes and washed the plate wondering how the two adults felt when Dudley asked for the answer to 37 plus 2.
"Okay." He sat down with a huff and started to rip open the packages. Harry went up to Dudley's room to do his daily tiding up work and then went to try and comb his hair. He was unsuccessful at that and so he put on his cap. He never went anywhere without it. The cap had lost his mother's scent of dahlias and home-made cookies, but at times he felt that she was right next to him.
He jumped the last six steps of the stairs and landed silently, waiting for the Dursleys to get ready. It was a shock to him and Dudley when they had agreed to let Harry come to the zoo.
Yesterday's tantrum was worth seven pounds and a popcorn tub.
Before they got into the car, Uncle Vernon pulled Harry aside and threatened him about messing up the trip. Harry didn't say anything. He was 40 % sure that something out of the ordinary was going to happen. At least that was better than the situation being a 100% loss because he had been practicing the breathing techniques for years to calm himself down in tense conditions.
The day was rather peaceful as they watched the animal in cages who stared back longingly at Harry. He gave them a look that said 'sorry'.
He couldn't manually open the gates. There was some kind of switch in a control room. He supposed he could get in there, but then there were too many security guards with guns meant for animals.
The last part of the zoo was the Reptile Cage. While Dudley wanted to see the deadly killer pythons, Harry went to the smallest snake and said, 'Hi.'
The small vine snake lifted it head and then stretched from a branch in its cage. It cocked its head and said, 'Hello?'
'Who is the oldest snake, here?' Harry asked. The snake jerked its head to the glass cage on the other side where Dudley and his parents happened to be.
Harry walked towards them and then noticed that every snake had been watching him. He warned them with his eyes and they immediately looked elsewhere.
"Make it move." Dudley said. Uncle Vernon rapped the glass with his knuckles. Harry realized that the snake was pretending to be asleep. He looked at the sign which said that it was a boa constrictor and was bred in the zoo.
It was also the biggest snake. Since snakes grew larger till they died, it made sense.
"Move!", Dudley said loudly hitting the glass. The snake just 'snoozed' and Harry knew that it was irritated with the vibration caused by the annoying human.
"He's asleep." Harry said. Dudley just 'humphed', "He's boring."
The three moved away and Harry moved towards the centre, 'They don't know what's it like. Lying there day after day. I know you're awake.'
The snake looked up interested, 'I have heard of humans who know of our tongue, but have never met one. It is an honour.'
The snake bowed and Harry inclined his head, 'The honour is mine.'
'For a human of your age, you seem quite developed.'
'Thank you. What I'm curious about is from where you have heard about others like me?'
'Far away from here. You need not cross the ocean. But it takes many long moons to reach.'
'Oh, well. It's nice –'
"MUM! DAD! You won't believe what he's doing!" Harry was pushed hard towards the wall as Dudley leaned up and pressed his nose against the glass. Harry glared.
The glass vanished. Dudley yelled, his arms flailing around and fell inside into a puddle of water. He froze when he saw the huge snake looking at him. Then the snake uncoiled itself unto the ground and looked at Harry, 'Thanks amigo. Brazil, here I come.'
'Mucho Gracias.' Harry mumbled, wondering how the snake knew Spanish.
People screamed and jumped upon railing as the Boa slithered away, snapping playfully.
Dudley managed to get his breath and stood up. His hand hit the solid transparent glass.
Aunt Petunia screamed.
She ran up and banged her thin hands against the glass, "MY DARING BOY! HOW DID YOU GET IN?"
"GET ME OUT, MUMMY!"
Uncle Vernon glared at Harry who sighed.
Another great day.
How was it? Yeah, I know that a half was from my side, a half from the book and a half from the movie, but things are going to change once Harry gets his letter.