Hello, here is the final chapter to this story. I'm so sorry that it took me so long to post it, I've had a few personal issues I've had to deal with and that's been taking up all my time and energy.
I hope you enjoy the ending to this story and I hops you'll take a look at some of the other ones I have up here! :)
Littleforest - I'm glad you're enjoying this story. Sadly, it's at an end. If you want to know more about Don...he has a tendency to be a character in many of my other stories. :) I didn't put much emphasis into developing him here, mainly because I think creating a good character takes time and this was just meant as a short story.
Katzztar - Thank you for such the nice reviews! I struggled for a little bit on weather to make Sirius just a meany or unstable...but when you really think of it...how could you not snap after all that everything has happened to him?
As soon as Arthur and Severus left left the room, Don turned to Harry and gently placed a hand on the boy's shoulder. "Alright Harry, I saw you're a bit uncomfortable sitting down. Did the cream help at all or you still sore?"
Harry blushed and squirmed in his seat again. "It's always a little sore."
Don hummed thoughtfully. Does the pain become worse when you pass a movement?"
Blushing even more at the mention of that the boy looked at his lap shook his head.
Sighing, the Healer reached over and gently lifted Harry's chin with his fingers. "I'm not trying to embarrass you Harry. I'm only asking because I need to know to make sure you're healthy. If it hurts, then you have to tell me so I can help you."
Don let go of Harry's chin and sighed again as Harry looked back down at his lap his face aflame. His heart became a little lighter though when he heard Harry start to speak. "It does hurt a little...but not that much."
Smiling Don nodded. "Thank you for telling me Harry. Does your lower back hurt at all or do you feel any other pain?"
Harry shook his head and this time Don knew he was being honest.
"Alright Harry, do you mind if I take a look and see how I can make you more comfortable?"
Blushing even further Harry shook his head. It was obvious that he did mind and was scared just at the mention of someone down there.
Gently Don rose the boy's chin again with his fingers and looked into the boy's scared eyes. "I promise, Harry, I won't hurt you. You can trust me. If you want, you can even hold my wand while I make sure you are alright."
Harry looked at the man in surprise. "I..I can hold your wand?"
Nodding Don smiled and gently handed the boy his wand. "I'll tell you everything I'm going to do before I do it, alright? If you don't like anything I do, let me know, and I'll stop immediately. I may need my wand at one point to heal you, but until then you can keep it safe for me, alright?"
Harry nodded and took a deep breath while he clutched the Healer's wand close to his chest. The Healer moved slowly off the couch and then placed a bunch of pillows on one end of the couch and a blanket at the other end.
"Alright Harry, unbuckle your trousers, but don't pull them down, and then lay down on your stomach with your head on the pillows. We'll do this as quickly as possible. Remember to stop me if you feel uncomfortable at any time."
Harry nodded, and still clutching the wand did as the Healer bid him too. He was nervous, but having Don's wand helped him feel better somehow. He knew he could protect himself if Don did something he didn't like and likely not get in trouble, because the trace was not on Don's wand as it was on his. That was how they knew when underage children performed spells with their wands and why they always got in more trouble than if it was accidental magic.
When Harry was lying on his stomach, Don made sure Harry was comfortable and then moved to kneel on the floor beside him. Gently he placed a hand on Harry's shoulder and looked the boy in his eyes to make sure he understood what he was going to do. It was very important that he made sure Harry didn't have a flash back. "Alright Harry, I'm going to pull down your trousers and then your shorts. Stop me at anytime if you are in any pain or something doesn't feel right."
Harry nodded against the pillows and clutched the wand close to his chest. Seeing the nod Don continued unclothing the boy's bottom and then gently began examining it by sending his healer's magic to scan deep inside to see what was wrong. After a few moments, Don covered the boy's lower half with the blanket he had placed at the end of the couch, and then knelt down on the floor next to where Harry's head was resting and placed a gentle hand on the boy's shoulder unfortunately causing him to jump.
"Child, it's alright. Can you look at me?"
Harry looked over into the Healer's kind eyes and held his breath. He knew somehow deep in his heart he was not going to like what the Healer was going to say, but for some strange reason he was beginning to really trust the man.
Don smiled at the boy and gently brushed his hair out of his eyes. "Breathe Harry, everything is fine."
When Harry took a breath, Don smiled and nodded his head. "Very good Harry. You are in better shape than I thought Harry. The swelling Severus told me about is coming down nicely. It seems that you have a few abscess. Have you noticed those small bumps down there?"
Harry looked down blushing and nodded.
Gently Don placed a gentle hand on Harry's. "That seems to be what was causing the swelling and once that's down a little I can treat it so it won't show up again. There also seems to be a few infected cuts where...it was...stretched. Those, the cream should heal just fine."
Harry shuttered at the memory of his...attack...as he was now thinking of it, and Don smiled sympathetically at the boy. "It is not very serious, but I understand that it's causing you discomfort. I have some numbing cream that will help if you want me to apply it. In a couple of days the swelling should be gone, and then I can heal that abscess."
Harry nodded his head. "Do...do you need your wand?"
"No Harry, keep a hold on it for me. I trust you to keep it safe for me."
Harry blushed as Don smiled down at the boy. "Alright Harry, I'm going to apply the cream now. I'll be fast and then we can talk a bit alright?"
Harry nodded again and watched as Don walked over to his bag and pulled out a jar of cream. The Healer then moved back over to Harry and put a gentle hand on the boy's back. "Relax Harry, and take some deep breaths."
Harry turned his head into the pillow and did as the Healer told him too and took some nice deep breaths as the healer moved the blanket back down.
"I'm going to rub this cream on and then pull your shorts and trousers back up Harry. Ok?"
Harry nodded and the Healer began to gently smooth the cream into the boy's bottom. In just a few minutes, he was done and was watching as the cream soaked into the boy's skin. He then moved to lift up the boy's undergarments and trousers up and over his bottom to their proper place. Once done, he moved back up to sit beside Harry's head and smiled. "How are you feeling now?"
The boy just nodded his head. "Thank you."
"No need to thank me Harry. Now, why don't you sit up and we'll have a chat."
Harry nodded and moved so fast to sit up that he became dizzy and almost fell forward. There were two strong hands that caught him by the shoulders though, and waited the few minutes for his vision to clear back up.
Once he could see straight, he sat back up and blushed at the Healer. "Thank you."
Don smiled and very discreetly nodded his head down to the boy's trousers.
Harry blushed and got the small hint. He then reached down and did up his trousers while still holding Don's wand in one hand close to his chest. With a small smile Don pulled up a chair across from where Harry was now sitting and sat down gently. It was better on his knees than kneeling on the floor. He may still be in his forties, but his knees still liked to pitch a fit when he used them too much...and today they really hated him.
Pushing those thoughts away, Don put a gentle smile on his face and looked deep into the boy's eyes. "Remember Harry, if you feel uncomfortable or you don't want to talk about anything you just have to say so. You do not have to talk to me, but I am here to help you heal...physically...and...here."
Don gently placed a hand over Harry's heart.
Harry gave a small nod and looked down at his lap as the Healer gently removed his hand. As soon as he looked down, he saw the wand and with a tentative hand he started to hand it back to the Healer, but Don just smiled and shook his head.
"You can keep a hold on that Harry. I trust you."
Harry gave a small smile and a sigh or relief. He hadn't really wanted to let go of the wand, but he was sure that the man had not wanted him to keep it for so long. For some reason thought, it made him feel safe and secure to hold on to the wand. He knew that the man before him could hurt him by other means if he wanted to...but it made him feel warm inside when he heard that the man trusted him...and he felt if the man trusted him...then he could trust the Healer back...sorta...
"Now, I know this is hard to talk about, but can you tell me, Harry, what happened to cause your injuries back there?"
Don felt awful asking the boy outright what happened, but he knew he couldn't beat around the bush. It wouldn't help Harry, and he needed to know what kind of damage the interaction had caused mentally. For mental wounds always lasted than the physical ones.
Harry looked down at the wand in his hands and took a deep breath. "Dudley...my cousin."
Don closed his hand into a fist, but that was the only sign that he was having trouble raining in his emotions. After a few seconds though, he calmed himself and gave his full attention back to Harry. He had heard a great many things in his line of work, but it always came to a surprise to him when children attacked other children in this manner.
Harry closed his eyes and continued though, not noticing any reaction from the Healer, and that was probably for the best. "...It was a few weeks after summer began...they were being awful as usual...but Dudley kept giving me weird looks..."
Harry stopped and took a deep breath and then looked over at the Healer nervously. The man sensed his nervousness though and placed a gentle hand on the boy's and started sending a touch of calming magic to him to settle his nerves.
"It's alright Harry, just take some deep breaths."
The boy nodded and did as the Healer said. He then looked back down at his hands, especially the now large warm hand that was covering his. Strangely, that simple gesture renewed his courage again. "...I was having nightmares...of Cedric...and I would wake up...screaming his name...Uncle Vernon was mad at me for waking him up every night...but Dudley just kept giving me that look."
Harry took a few more deep breaths and then started his story again. "One day, when Uncle Vernon was at work...Aunt Petunia forgot something at the store...she ran out to get it leaving me and Dudley alone...I went to my room to try to get some sleep, but Dudley followed me..."
Harry stopped his story again and took a few quick breaths. To give the boy some more courage Don gave his hand a gentle squeeze and sent a touch more calming magic.
"Take a deep breath Harry."
Harry closed his eyes and did as the Healer said trying to soak up as much comfort as he could. He was starting to get an upset stomach from this line of thinking and he just didn't feel comfortable talking about this...but at the same time it felt like a giant weight was being lifted off his chest as he spoke more and more about the attack.
Opening his eyes Harry looked down at his lap and took one last deep breath. "He said he heard me at night...crying for my boyfriend who must have broken up with me...because I'm such a freak... I...I...told him that wasn't true...but he didn't believe me... He told me...that if I liked guys so much...that I would like him too..."
Harry took another deep breath. "Dudley...he's always been bigger than me...and a lot stronger... He pushed me down on the bed on my stomach...and then...and then he...he pulled my pants down...I couldn't move...he then...he then..."
Don placed his other hand on Harry's and sent even more calming magic to the boy. When he saw that the calming magic wasn't calming the boy completely he moved out his chair and sat on the couch next to Harry and gently placed a arm around Harry's shoulders.
"Shhh, that's enough Harry. You don't have to say anymore." Because now Harry was shaking and tears were starting to roll down his cheeks. Don didn't want Harry to become any more upset than he already was.
"Calm down now Harry, everything is alright. You are safe now and that will never happen again."
Harry tuned his head and burred his face in the Healer's shoulder as he started to cry. Don just held him even closer as he let out the hurt he was feeling. An awful, unspeakable, action had happened to this boy and no matter how strong someone was; it could break them. And it often did; especially someone so young.
As Harry moved to seek comfort from the Healer, Don wrapped his arms around the boy and held him while whispering soothing words in his ear in a very practiced mannor. They sat there like that for a good ten minutes while Harry's calmed down to hiccups and pulled back a little. Before he could wipe his eyes on his sleeve, Don handed the boy a handkerchief and gave him a small warm smile.
"Use this instead, Harry."
Don gently patted Harry on the shoulder. "There is no need to be sorry Harry; you have nothing to apologize for. Something horrible has happened to you and it's perfectly natural for you to be upset...and even angry."
Harry looked up at the Healer with a little surprise. "How...how did you know?"
"How do I know that you feel anger towards those you love?"
"Because, I would be angry too, that no one came to rescue me. That no one came to even check on me all those years."
Harry looked down at the floor and nodded. "Why..."
Don gently lifted Harry's chin up with his fingers so that he was looking right in his eyes. "Why do you feel angry or why didn't they come to check on you?"
Harry shrugged his shoulders and looked down at his lap making Don reach over and gently lift his chin to look in his eyes.
"There is no shame Here Harry. I'm not here to judge you, I'm here to help you."
Harry nodded, but looked back down at his lap as soon as Don let him. "Arthur said...he believed Mrs. Figg that everything was alright."
The Healer nodded softly. "He probably wanted to believe the best, Harry. Often times, people see what they want to, not what's really there."
His head sinking a bit more Harry nervously started to twist his hands in his lap. "When...when they met me though...why...why didn't they notice anything?"
"Did you let them notice anything, Harry? I heard you went to great lengths to hide everything."
Harry blushed and nodded. "But still..."
"And what did you do whenever anyone asked you a question a little too close to the truth?"
Harry rested his head on Don's shoulder. "I...I ran."
Don nodded. "When you stopped hiding, what did they do?"
Harry tried to look down, but Don stopped him with his hand and gently smiled at him. "What did they do Harry?"
"They healed me and made sure I was alright...they got you...to help..."
"And why did they do that?"
Don smiled and nodded his head. "That's right Harry, they quite a bit care about you."
Harry let a small smile grace his face and with his head still resting on the Healer's side he handed back the Healer his wand. "I...I don't think I need that anymore."
Don smiled and took the wand from his patient. "I'm glad to hear that Harry. I think Severus and Arthur are waiting at the door with our lunch. Do you want me to let them in?"
Harry wiped his face one last time with the handkerchief and nodded. "Yeah...and thank you."
"No need for thanks Harry." Smiling Don patted Harry's knee and then got up to let in the two men.
Opening the door, Don smiled at them and took one of the trays they were carrying so they wouldn't drop them. He then discreetly gestured to where Harry was sitting and nodded slightly letting them know that Harry was alright. They both smiled and nodded as they entered the room, but Don motioned to Arthur to leave the room for a moment with him.
Don turned and set down the tray he had taken and then took Arthur's tray and sat that down as well. Smiling reassuringly Don looked at Harry. "We'll be right back Harry. Why don't you start your meal with Severus?"
Harry gave a small nod and watched as the two left the room. As soon as they did, he turned to Severus and looked down at his lap in embarrassment from the searching look the man was giving him.
Severus put down the trays on the table and then moved it in front of the couch and chairs. "How are you feeling Harry?"
Harry looked up in somewhat surprise that the man was asking him how he felt. Not many people did that.
Severus caught the look Harry was giving him and misinterpreted as a look of pain he was afraid to admit. After taking care of the food, he came to sit next to the boy. "Are you hurting anywhere?"
Harry shook his head. "No sir."
Severus sighed and gently patted the boy's back. "I'm glad to hear that Harry. Let us know if anything is wrong, alright? I dare say the Weasley's care a great about you and want the best for you. The wolf stopped me as well on the way back here. I want you to know Harry; your secrets are safe with me. I won't tell anyone you don't want me to and only Arthur, Albus, Don and I know everything you have been though. Don't let anyone pressure you to say anything, only tell who you feel comfortable telling."
Harry gave a soft nod. "Thank you, sir."
Severus nodded slightly in acknowledgment and then looked seriously at the boy. "Look at me Harry."
Harry looked up at the teacher and saw sincerity written all over his face. "I want you to know Harry, if you ever feel unsafe and need somewhere to go, you may come to me. I know you have a home of loving people now, but if something does happen, then I will help you."
Harry blushed and nodded, but then looked down at his lap. Severus though just gently put something in his lap, it was a small chain that would go around his wrist.
"This is a portkey. If you're in danger it will take you to my chambers at Hogwarts. Wear it on your wrist at all times, it's invisible to all but you and me. Don't let anyone know you have it, even Arthur."
"Don't thank me, just put it on and promise me that you will keep it on at all times."
Harry nodded and moved to put the bracelet on. "I promise, sir."
Severus nodded and then moved to the chair across from Harry as the door opened.
Arthur came in and walked over to Harry immediately. He smiled at Harry and sat down with his own tray of food on his lap. "Molly made that just for you. Maybe you can go down and reassure her that you are alright after a little while. I don't think she'll be happy until she has her arms around you."
Harry smiled and looked down at the pipping hot meal in his lap. Molly always did make his favorites for him when he stayed with them. It was something he always looked forward to.
"I think I can do that."
Arthur smiled and hugged him around the shoulders while he put his own tray on his lap. Don then pulled his own lunch from the table and put it in his lap while Severus smirked at the boy.
"Yes Harry, your friends were asking after you, but don't worry we assured them that we had not murdered you. When they see you though, we made sure they would not bombard you with questions."
"Thank you professor." Harry smiled and looked down at his food. It seemed his snarky professor understood and cared more than he liked to show. Secretly, he touched his new bracelet and let the comfort it gave wash over him. It felt nice to have an out if he was in danger and it made his chest feel warm inside when he thought that his Professor cared enough to give it to him.
Don came back over and sat down in another chair with his lunch. "So Arthur, I was thinking that maybe Harry and I could meet a few days a week. What do you think?"
Arthur nodded and looked down at his son. "I think that would be a good idea. What days were you thinking?"
"Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Would that be alright?"
Arthur nodded. "That would be great. We should be around, feel free to stop by whenever you want."
Don nodded and looked at Harry. "Does that sound alright Harry? What do you think?"
Harry gave a small nod and picked up his fork. "That sounds alright. Are...are we going to talk some more?"
The Healer nodded slightly. "Yes child, about anything you want to. I would also like to keep tabs on your health and make sure you're getting everything you need. Speaking on which, I think you should start on some nutrient potions to help make up for vitamins and other good things you missed out on."
Harry grimaced, but nodded. He had that potion once when he was in the hospital wing and he remembered that it tasted partially nasty.
Reaching behind him Don took a potion out of his bag and handed it to the boy. "I'll bring some more by later, but I want you to take one during every meal. It will also help you grow taller and help build your muscles."
Harry smiled at that news as he accepted the potion. He had always hated how weak and short he was. "Do you think I'll get much taller?"
Don nodded. "I bet a foot or so; magic is an amazing thing."
Smiling even more Harry gulped down the potion, but still grimaced at the taste. He would put up with the awful flavor if it made him actually grow taller.
"I also have to finish healing you." Don looked up at Arthur. "Can I come by tomorrow? The swelling should be down enough by then."
Arthur gave a soft nod in approval. "You can stay for dinner too, Molly would love that."
Smiling Don gave a soft nod.
The rest of lunch passed quietly with Arthur telling Harry what mischief the twins had been up to and how Molly was preparing a feast for dinner. When they were finished, Arthur banished the rest of the plates and trays to the kitchen and wrapped an arm around Harry's shoulder while the boy let out a large yawn.
Looking up Harry saw a small smirk on the potion masters face and knew immediately that his tea had been dosed with a dreamless sleep. He had been really tired from his emotions going wild, but a little warning would have been nice. Harry scowled at the older man, but was interrupted with another yawn.
Arthur just smiled and got up holding his hand out to the boy. "Let's get you to bed for a rest, huh?"
Harry sighed and nodded while he got off the couch and accepting his foster fathers hand up. On the way out of the room though, he turned around to half glared at his Professor. "You could have just asked me to take the potion, sir, I would have."
"I beg to differ Harry. I have seen you in the hospital wing, now go get some rest."
Harry sighed knowing he had to grudging accept the man's words as true. He would have protested, he hated taking anything that made him feel weak...and being put to sleep he felt was definitely a weakness.
Arthur wrapped an arm around his son's shoulder and then led him out to his room. He wanted to make sure Harry got to his room before the potion took it's full affect. Once there, he pulled out some pajama's out of Ron's chest of draws and handed it to Harry. The boy looked up at the man and started to protest, but Arthur just shook his head.
"Ron won't mind Harry, and tomorrow we'll make sure you have some of your own clothes. Alright?"
Harry sighed and nodded knowing he wasn't going to win and he was getting sleepier by the minute. Arthur just smiled and and handed the clothing over to Harry.
"I'll see you in a minute Harry."
Harry nodded and watched as Arthur left the room shutting the door behind him. As soon as Arthur left, Harry changed into the pajamas and crawled into his bed yawning all the while.
A few minutes later Arthur came back in the room and smiled seeing Harry all snuggled in the covers. He quickly came over to the bed and sat down on the edge gently.
"I'll come and wake you in a few hours, alright? Just call if you need anything."
Harry nodded and handed the man his glasses to put on the bedside table. His eyes were already closing and he thought he would probably miss if he tried himself. Arthur took the glasses and then gently brushed back the boy's hair.
"Relax Harry, it's time to stop fighting the potion."
Harry closed his eyes and let sleep overtake him, relaxing under his faster fathers gentle hand. He fell asleep feeling more content than he had in his whole life, he had a family who loved him. That was all he had wanted all these years...and he finally had it...he finally had people who loved him.