Harry sat alone in the Gryffindor common room. It was Christmas Eve, and everyone else had gone home. Yes, of course the professors were still there, but who would want to spend Christmas with Professor Snape? Harry smirked wryly at the thought. He brought a chair to the window, and put his feet up on the ledge, watching the snow fall. He grabbed his mug of hot chocolate and cradled it in his hands, letting the warm porcelain sooth him.
Harry wished for nothing more than to have a friend that night. Ron was with his family, celebrating Christmas, as was Hermione. He hadn't asked to spend the holidays with them. He knew Christmas was for family, and he didn't have one. At least not one that was more pleasant than being alone, wallowing in his own pity.
Looking out the window, he noticed the clear night sky. Sirius, the dog star, was shining brightly. And that brought back all the memories of his dead godfather. Sirius. He wanted to spend his Christmas with Sirius, but he knew he couldn't. Refusing to let tears well up in his eyes, he looked at the star, as if it were some connection to the closest thing he ever had had for family.
"Star light, star bright," Harry began softly, feeling silly, but it was Christmas and he was alone, "I wish I may, I wish I might, have the wish I wish tonight. I wish I had a friend tonight. One who understood."
Merlin sat alone in Gaius' main room in Camelot. He had a steaming mug of tea, strong, and bitter. Just how he felt right then. Of course, Arthur had to choose Christmas Eve to be such a jerk. He didn't even know why he wasted his time on Arthur. Perhaps it was because he didn't have anyone else? If he rejected Arthur, then he would very literally not have a friend in the world. There was Gaius, yes, but he wasn't really a friend friend.
Gaius was currently taking care of Uthar, who had a fever, and so Merlin was left alone to ponder his Christmas Eve. He looked out the window, and saw the brightest star in the sky. Gaius has drilled astronomy into his head, so of course he knew it was Sirius, the dog star.
"Star light, star bright," he said, "I wish I may, I wish I might, have the wish I wish tonight. I wish I had a friend who would understand."
Suddenly, there was a pop, and someone appeared in the chair across from him, holding a mug of something which Merlin couldn't identify. After all, chocolate hadn't been discovered yet.
"Who are you?" the stranger asked.
"Merlin," he said.
"Oi, don't swear," the stranger said. "I asked who you were."
"Merlin!" he tried again. Swearing? Really?
"Yes, of course," he said, annoyed. "What did you think I meant?"
"You're Merlin? You're the Merlin?"
"Yes, and who do you think you are?"
"I'm Harry Potter," he said smiling.
"How did you get here?" Merlin asked.
"I - I don't know," Harry replied. "I just finished wishing for a friend."
"You did?" Merlin said.
"Yeah, I wished on the dog star," Harry volunteered.
"I did too," Merlin whispered. "And so you're my Christmas wish." Harry smiled at him.
"Christmas magic," Harry whispered back. Merlin blinked at him.
"You better not talk about that," Merlin warned.
"Why not?" Harry asked, confused.
"You're not from around here, are you?"
"No..." Harry said. "I'm from 1500 years in your future."
"Oh," Merlin said, nodding, confused, but accepting the explanation, "well, Uthar, the king, has outlawed sorcery."
"And you're hiding that you're a wizard from him?"
"How do you know I'm a wizard?"
"You're the greatest wizard in history!" Harry breathed. "We all swear by your name, and you - you'll do great things for the magical community!" Merlin snorted.
"Right now, I'm just saving Arthur's sorry hide," he said.
"Oh," Harry said.
"What's your life like?" Merlin asked abruptly.
"I'm supposed to save the whole wizarding world from an evil bastard of a wizard," Harry said, grimacing. "He gave me this." He pointed to his scar. "When I was a baby, he cast a killing curse and I didn't die. And now he's come back and I have to defeat him, or everyone will die."
"Sounds like fun," Merlin said dryly.
"Here, try this," Harry said, shoving his cocoa to Merlin, who sniffed it experimentally. "You won't have anything like it your lifetime," Harry assured him. "It's not discovered yet. It's called chocolate. You'll like it." Merlin did so, and felt the warm sweetness run down his throat.
"Thank you," he said.
Merlin and Harry spent the rest of the evening sharing stories and experiences. Both were famous in their own way, and both had fates that determined their actions. Neither had a friend that night, and the Christmas magic saw to it that they came together that one time.
They never saw each other again, but they never forgot the other wizard - the other one who had made the same wish, for a friend who understood.
Okay, I know it's short, and it's not Christmas now, but this was a dream I had a few nights ago, and I wanted to jot it down before I forgot it. Consider it a little "Christmas-in-almost-July" present. :)