A/N: I own nothing!
Harry should have known something was up when the Dursleys brought him along on their trip to Denmark. But the five-year-old was too excited to question the niceness of his relations.
"Fweak," Dudley spat as they walked along the beach three weeks into their visit. Harry frowned; he'd been better about his freakishness. Uncle Vernon even commented on it when he wasn't commenting on how backwards and primitive these Danes were ("I mean really. No hotels at all! They expect us to stay at an inn!) and Aunt Petunia smiled at him last night. But Dudley still hated him.
"Dudley, look at that wock!" Harry smiled and pointed at a strange looking rock a ways away. "Wace you to it!"
Dudley rolled his eyes but still ran with his cousin, resulting in him becoming red-faced and out of breath while Harry's eyes gleamed with excitement at beating Dudley in a race.
"Bet your fweakishness caused you to win!" Dudley exclaimed. "I'm telling Dad!"
Harry wasn't listening as he climbed on the rock to have a better view of the ocean. It was beautiful and calm. It was weird, the way he was attracted to the sea. Maybe that's where his mother and father went. Maybe they were mere-people and not the drunks Uncle Vernon said they were.
"I said," an impatient Dudley said with a glare to Harry's back, "I'm telling Dad! So get going!"
With that, the larger boy shoved Harry off the rock and into the ocean. Despite its shallowness, Harry did not resurface; his glasses being the only part of him to return to the land.
"DAD!" Dudley shouted and ran back to where they were staying. Under the water was a completely different story. Harry was struggling to get back to where he could breathe but Dudley's hand-me-downs were preventing him from returning to his home on land. A glimpse of red was all he saw before Harry's emerald eyes shut.
A five-year-old mermaid with red hair did not expect to come across a human when she performed border patrol with her father. That could be the reason why she brought the boy to the Sea King instead of helping him to the surface.
"What is it, Ariel?" Triton turned to his youngest and his eyes widened upon seeing the human his daughter was dragging behind her.
"Is he sleeping Daddy?" Ariel asked when she stopped. Triton didn't answer her question; instead he pointed his trident at the human while ignoring his daughter's gasp. Using some of the qualities of the trident, he provided an air bubble for the human. While most humans ate fish and killed his people, Triton would not kill a guppy. Or a child.
"W-whewe am I?" the young boy asked upon awaking. Triton could see emerald green eyes that looked so much like those of his wife Athena. "What happened?"
"Daddy, can he stay with us?" Ariel turned to her father and begged with big eyes. She longed for someone her own age to play with—it stunk being the youngest. No one wanted to play with you. Triton sighed.
"Ariel…" but he cut off upon seeing the hopeful look on the boy's face. Shaking his head, Triton continued. "I can't take this boy away from his family. I know I'd be worried terribly if I was in his parents' place."
"Please!" the boy begged. "I'll do anything. I'll work in youw home, I'll be good. Please don't make me go back to the Duwsleys!"
"Who are they?" Ariel asked before Triton could say anything.
"My aunt and uncle," the boy replied, rather bitterly. "Please!"
Triton sighed. "I'll need to talk with my wife. You can accompany us back to the palace while I talk it over."
"Did he just say 'palace'?" he heard the boy ask Ariel. The air bubble was being controlled by the trident, so Ariel could swim at her normal pace rather than lag behind pushing the bubble.
"Yep! Daddy rules the sea with my mommy!" Ariel said proudly. "I have six older sisters too!"
"Wow!" the boy gasped in amazement, and the tiniest bit of envy only audible to the ear of an experienced parent.
"What about you?" Ariel asked. "What's your name?"
The boy was silent for a moment before answering the little mermaid's question. "Hawwy. My name's Hawwy."
That's a good name, though he could feel out of place with all the girls' names starting with the letter A, Triton thought and then shook his head. What was he doing! He couldn't get attached to the child.
"Do you have any siblings?" he could hear Ariel ask.
"No. My aunt and uncle have a son, but he doesn't like me so we don't play," Harry said; trying to keep his tone light. Out of the corner of his eye, Triton could see his youngest frown.
"How old are you?" Ariel asked out of the blue.
"Five," Harry said proudly. Ariel grinned in delight.
"Same here! Oh, we're going to be great friends!"
From what he could see, Triton didn't think the smile on Harry's face could get any bigger; and his own hope of adopting the boy as his own grew.
Ariel wasn't the only mermaid curious about young Harry upon the arrival at the palace. All his daughters crowded around the air bubble, demanding to see the boy.
"Back off!" Ariel glared at her sisters, getting in front of the bubble as if to protect Harry from her sisters.
"But Ariel!" Arista whined. "We want to see him too!"
Triton shook his head and left to talk with his wife in their private gardens. Athena turned and smiled at her husband upon his arrival.
"Triton, do you really need to talk about it?" were the first words out of Athena's mouth. "The young boy obviously loves it here. And if his relatives didn't dive in after him, then I say good riddance."
Triton smiled at his queen. Athena was quick to protect her daughters from anything, and despite the fact that she had only seen the boy in passing, Harry seemed to gain the same protection from the Sea Queen.
"How can I take a boy away from his family?" Triton asked.
"By giving him a new one," Athena smiled. "Adella would be happy. She wouldn't be the only raven-haired in the bunch."
Triton and Athena chuckled at that before Triton sighed.
"Are you sure about this dear?" he asked his beloved Queen. "The boy has a family on land and besides he's a human!"
"Triton!" Athena snapped. "Just what are you saying?"
Triton sighed once more before answering.
"It's just that he wouldn't last long down here," he told his wife. "Humans need air to breathe and we live underwater."
Athena rolled her eyes. "You have the power to heal fins dear. Wouldn't you also have the power to create them as well?"
She chuckled at her husband's awestruck expression before they both left the garden in search for Harry. They didn't have long to look. Harry and Ariel were in the princess' room playing; or rather Ariel was helping Harry fend off the others.
"Harry," Triton said, causing the play to stop. "Could you come here please?"
Harry looked once at Ariel before he swam in his air bubble to the Sea King.
"Yes youw majesty?" Harry said rather timidly and Triton frowned. Harry hadn't been that timid when they were at the border.
"Harry," Athena spoke and Harry's head jerked up. "Would you like to live with us?"
Harry's jaw dropped and he nodded his head as quickly as he could. But then he stopped and a small frown formed on his features.
"What's wrong?" Athena asked.
"I'm human," Harry said. "How could I live down hewe?"
Athena chuckled. "With a wave of a trident, dear. Now hold on. This may tickle."
Harry watched as golden light wrapped around him and he closed his eyes as the slight pressure from his legs molding together became too much. He winced as a certain appendage began shrinking noticeably-as if it wasn't even there anymore.
"Harry? You can look," Athena said with a smile and Harry opened one eye. He gasped upon seeing a purple fin where his legs used to be.
"You mean I'm…"
"A merman," Triton said with a smile. "You're a merman."