Petunia Dursley was standing in the middle of a pitch black room. She turned her head in every direction, but there was no light to be seen. There were no sounds other than her panicked breathing. A million thoughts ran through her mind. Had her nephew Harry come to take revenge upon her? Had he cursed her somehow?
As if her thoughts had conjured him, Harry appeared before her. Beside him was a table containing many strange objects that were unfamiliar to Petunia. In the center of the table, however, were three almost mundane items: three large glass jars. The only thing that set these jars apart from other regular glass jars was their contents. They were filled to the top with a glowing substance that shimmered from a deep red to the brightest gold.
'Where am I?' asked Petunia angrily. 'Why have you brought me here?'
Harry shook his head sadly, as if he had expected more of her. 'I wanted to show you something,' he replied. 'Do you see these jars?'
Petunia nodded. 'So what about them?'
Harry slowly ran one finger down the side of the first jar. 'These are filled with hope,' he said. 'The essence of hope. My hope. My father's hope.'
He pointed at each jar in turn. Pointing at the last, he said, 'And my mother's hope.'
Petunia drew in a sharp breath. Why was he showing her these things? He knew she wanted nothing more than to forget him, to forget her sister and that man she had married. She started to turn away.
'Stop,' Harry commanded, and suddenly Petunia couldn't move. Another curse! 'You will hear me out,' he said.
'I had hoped that you and Uncle Vernon would come to accept me. I had hoped to have a normal life with a normal family. I had hoped not to be beaten up by Dudley, treated like a servant and hidden from the world as if there was something wrong with me.' His voice dropped so low Petunia barely heard his next words. 'I had hoped to be loved by you.'
Before she could respond, Harry moved to the second jar. 'My father had hoped to have a long and happy life with my mother. He had hoped to help shape a better future for our world. And he had hoped to see me grow up and have a life and a family of my own.'
Harry came to the last jar. 'My mother,' he said quietly, 'hoped for a long and happy life with my father. She hoped to raise me in a happy and loving home, and that I would be accepted by her family. The very last hope she had was that I would be safe. So, I feel I need to thank you, after all these years, for keeping me safe. You fulfilled my mother's last hope. You never treated me well or loved me, but I can accept that now. But I wonder... Can you?'
The table and Harry both disappeared. A light appeared in the middle of the darkness, small at first and growing larger until it was the size of a theater movie screen. Instantly, flashes of Petunia's life began playing. She and Lily playing as children; the life changing moment when Lily had left her to go to Hogwarts; her screaming at Lily to stay away from her, that Lily was a freak.
Then Petunia saw herself open then door to find baby Harry on the front step; reading the letter from Albus Dumbledore informing her that Lily and her husband were dead.
The next moment was one she'd tried hard to forget. The grief that had swept over her when she learned of Lily's death had been overwhelming and shocking. She had locked herself in the bathroom and cried for what had seemed like hours. She told Vernon she was ill. Then she had walked out of that bathroom and put Lily behind her. Or so she had thought at the time. Petunia could feel the ghost of that grief threatening to choke her now, so many years later.
The next scenes she saw were all of Harry. She could admit now, they had been too hard on him. She had foolishly thought that if she and Vernon kept Harry downtrodden that they could stamp out the magic in him. They had been wrong. Harry had Lily's spark of life; Petunia had known it all along. The screen finally flickered and died out, the images stopped coming. Petunia sat down in the darkness and cried.
Petunia woke suddenly in the comfort of her own bed. Her face was wet with tears, but that was nothing new. Ever since Vernon had died she had had terribly sad dreams. This was not the first time she had dreamed of Harry. Time had gone by and she had grown older. She came to regret the way she had treated her nephew. He had been her only link to her once beloved sister.
Petunia had seen Harry only once since the day they all left Privet Drive. About fifteen years after that day, Petunia had been shopping in London with Dudley's wife, Mary. She looked up the street and there he was. He was holding the hand of a pretty red haired woman and in his other arm he carried a young red haired girl. In front of them walked two boys, one with red hair and one the spitting image of Harry himself as a boy. Harry was smiling about something the boys were saying when his eyes met Petunia's. The smile slowly slipped off of his face and their gazes held for one beat, and then another. Then Harry dipped his head to her in a gesture of acknowledgment and he and his family turned the corner and disappeared from her sight.
Petunia lay awake in bed for a long time after the dream, thinking of her past. As the sun started to rise, the weariness of her years overcame her, and she slipped away into a deep sleep. This time it was Lily who waited in Petunia's dreams. She opened her arms wide and Petunia rushed into them.
'Welcome home,' said Lily quietly.