Prologue: The Ritual
It was the 3rd October 1981 and Lily Potter couldn't believe her incredible luck. Today, Albus Dumbledore, a good acquaintance of her and her husband James, had decided to visit them in their small cottage at Godrics Hollow. He was often very busy being the headmaster of the only magical school in Great Britain and - more importantly - the leader of the Order of the Phoenix, the only real resistance against the Dark Lord Voldemort these days, but he tried to come by whenever he had time. Which was once every few month, but it didn't matter, because James' three best friends visited as often as they could too and their friendly neighbour, Bathilda Bagshot, also came over every few days.
But today only Albus was there and James had convinced him to play with little Harry a bit. Harry, their most beloved son who was in grave danger as Voldemort had somehow begun to think that the one year old child posed a threat to him. Lily didn't fully comprehend his reasoning as it was based on a prophecy and she thought Divination was utter rubbish, but that did not change their situation. She had done quite a bit of research, most of it touching topics that weren't very well-known, some of them even pretty dark, but she didn't care. She wanted Harry to be as protected as possible and she would do everything to make sure he would survive.
Because of that she had finally found a ritual that might work. It was highly dangerous and even the creator thought it to be impossible to complete, but if she gathered the correct ingredients she knew it would work. The problem? The three main ingredients were thought to be a myth. There existed a children's tale about three magical objects, called the Deathly Hallows. Every person possessing all three of them was called the 'Master of Death', but no one had ever mentioned to do so and lived to tell about it. But the completion of said ritual would transfer the power of these hallows into a human, truly making him or her the Master of Death, as getting killed would be almost impossible.
And Lily currently possessed two of the three needed objects.
It had been a shock to discover that her husband's Invisibility Cloak wasn't just that, but actually the Cloak of Invisibility, given to Ignotus Peverell by Death himself, if one believed the story that Beedle the Bard had written centuries ago.
The second Hallow was called the Resurrection Stone and it had posed the biggest challenge because she didn't know anything about it. But she had never stopped her research and after many weeks she had finally learned that Cadmus Peverell, the first possessor of that stone, had left the stone to a family called Gaunt.
She had needed even more time and a bit of James' money combined with a fake name to get access to the Ministry files, but it had been worth it. She had gotten the location of the Gaunt property and, since the last members of the family - Morfin and Merope, if she recalled them correctly - had died, she had hoped that maybe the stone was still there, forgotten or something like that.
And it had been there, crafted into a ring, surrounded by strong Dark Magic. She had visited many times, secretly, when Harry was being entertained by the Marauders, wondering how to get the stone without setting off the wards. After making sure that it was the real one, of course.
In the end, it turned out to be easier than anticipated, because for some reason the wards were keyed to the ring itself, not to the stone. She had broken it off after carefully studying the curses and traps nearby and raising powerful protection charms, glad that Charms had always been her strong subject.
Now the only thing left was the Elder Wand, first used by Antioch Peverell. And after many studies and even a disguised visit to a wandmaker called Gregorovitch (there may or may not have been a bit of... persuasion and obliviating necessary) she finally made the connection. Current master of the Elder Wand was no less a figure than Albus Dumbledore himself.
Though she had had no idea how to borrow his wand. He would never allow what she was planning to do so asking had been out of the question. So she was delighted to see that James had taken him to play with Harry. Her husband was really devoted to their son and tried to be the perfect father. Though actually she thought he sometimes spoiled him rotten, especially when Sirius, Remus and Peter were there, but anyway.
If Albus was there too now, she could imagine that both men wouldn't come down for quite a while.
But that wasn't the main reason she was delighted. Actually, it was something even better. The four of them had drunk tea and Albus had, of course, used his wand to add sugar to his cup. He had then placed it on the table and afterwards, in the chaos that always ensued whenever James was excited to do something, had forgotten to take it with him.
To his defence, James had left his wand on the couch himself and Albus was a bit older than her husband.
Still, as Lily had been cleaning up everything she couldn't believe her luck. Originally, she had devised a much more complicated plan, including James' cloak, a lot of distractions and a huge amount of luck. This was way easier.
But she wouldn't have an infinite amount of time, Albus would surely notice that he had left his wand soon and the ritual needed to be finished by then.
So she hurried to collect every ingredient she needed. It was a variety of rare things - including a complicated potion she thankfully had already brewed and put under a stasis spell for this situation - but the Deathly Hallows easily were the most important ones.
Drawing a deep breath, she stepped into the room she had already prepared for this, hoping that this wouldn't be the last thing she would ever do.
A few hours later she recovered her senses, lying in the middle of the room, directly in the centre of a triangle which held a Deathly Hallow at each corner and was located inside an even bigger circle with many complicated runes on it. She felt queasy, unsure if it had worked, but glad that she was definitely still alive.
She went to collect the Hallows, examining them as she took them. The Cloak of Invisibility? It certainly still worked. But the Resurrection Stone? She looked at it for a moment, before turning it a few times in her hand, holding her breath. She knew that if everything went according to plan the stone would lose it's powers completely while the cloak would continue to work just like a normal Invisibility Cloak would and the Elder Wand would be reduced to a normal wand.
She let out a relieved breath she didn't even knew she was holding. It had worked. She had completed the ritual that made her the so-called 'Master of Death'. She knew that many people believed one truly was a Master of Death if one could accept that every life needed to end. But this was on a completely different level.
She finally tried out the Elder Wand, casting a quick Lumos, almost going blind as the tip of the wand suddenly flared up, much brighter than she had anticipated, but she had no time to loose. She extinguished the light and was almost out of the door as she noticed something in the mirror next to the door.
She stopped, staring at her forehead in wonder. On it, a thin scar was seen, shaped like the rune Sowilo, standing for the sun and success amongst other things. She sighed, brushing away her hair as she softly touched the rune. Yes, she certainly hoped that her plan would succeed. Maybe she should tell James about it now that it was done and he couldn't talk her out of it anymore.
She covered the scar with a strong, undetectable glamour charm - which came out even stronger than intended, but she just welcomed it, hoping that not even Albus would be able to see past it - before placing the cloak back to where she had taken it from earlier, pocketing the small, now useless stone to dispose of it later and making her way upstairs to the nursery, Elder Wand in hand.
She opened the door a fraction, smiling happily as she could see Harry zooming around on his toy broomstick, a birthday gift from Sirius with which he had already done quite a few wicked things, the little devil. Right now, he was chasing Albus who had quite the trouble in keeping the child at bay.
Chuckling, she finally stepped into the room.
"It seems like you're having fun, but look at the time." She pointed at the clock on the wall that was getting ignored most of the time. "It's getting late, do you want to stay for dinner, Albus?"
The old wizard looked up as Harry zoomed past his robes, only to be caught by James.
"I'm afraid I cannot, though I am sure it would be delicious," he said, smiling wistfully at Lily before turning to her husband who was struggling with Harry. "It has been very amusing, I am glad to see that little Harry has so much fun even though the situation is very serious." He crouched down next to Harry, who was now staring at him with big eyes. "I hope I will see you again soon, we will surely play again." Then, he stood up again. "I thank both of you for your time, but I will need to take my leave now. Order business, you know..."
Both parents nodded. The order was more important, they could understand that, even though Lily knew that James would love to help but didn't because he didn't want to leave Harry and her alone.
But there was one thing left to do.
"By the way, Albus, you left your wand on the table," she said, looking slightly reproachful as she took it out of her pocket, handing it to him. Then she looked at her husband. "And James, if you leave yours on the couch one more time I'll hex it to permanently stick behind your ear!"
"Come on Lils, that was maybe the second time...!"
"Yes, the second time this week! And don't 'Lils' me, Mr. Potter!"
Albus looked at them with his usual twinkle in his eyes. "I think that is my cue to leave. Have a pleasant evening you two. May I take the cloak with me to study it, James?"
"Yeah, but don't leave me alone, Albus! She's scary when she's angry!" James half-cried which made her punch his shoulder lightly.
"I'll show you scary you forgetful fool!"
Though they all knew that it wasn't all that serious, but she really thought that James should get a grip. Even if they tended to pretend everything was alright, there was a crazy Dark Lord out there aiming for their son, to leave his wand on the couch could actually be dangerous. Also, had he just lent his Invisibility Cloak to Albus?
She really needed to talk to him.
After that day everything seemed fine again, though the one time Peter visited he looked terribly down, even worse than Sirius and Remus did when they had been there, telling Lily and James about who else had fallen. She hadn't understood it at that time, until that fateful night on Halloween.
Together with James she had played with Harry as they heard the front door crashing open. No one who knew where they lived did that. At once they knew something was very, very wrong and both of them stood up, feeling alarmed.
"Lily, take Harry and go! It's him!" James said at once, eyes wide, handing Harry to her. "Go! Run! I'll hold him off!"
She nodded weakly, stumbling up the stairs, the only exit to their room that didn't lead to the front door, and into Harry's room. But before she had closed the door, she already heard that hateful voice uttering the Killing Curse. She had no time to spare to keep listening, instead she hurriedly placed Harry into his cot before piling up furniture in front of the door, hoping it would hold him off slightly longer.
She knelt down in front of Harry, looking straight at him, tears threatening to spill, knowing that the end of this night would probably leave him orphaned.
"Mummy loves you," she whispered, placing a kiss on his forehead. "Just know that whatever happens, I will always love you. As will James."
The door burst open, sending splinters and baby clothes flying and she whirled around, shielding Harry with her body as she looked Voldemort directly into the face.
She had no wand - it laid on the living room carpet, forgotten. But she knew what she had to do. She had mentally gone through it a few times.
"Not Harry, not Harry, please not Harry!"
"Stand aside, you silly girl!"
There was only one possibility to transfer the power of being the Master of Death to another living being. It was to let yourself getting killed. Of course, she could have used the power to escape Death herself, but being hit by an Avada Kedavra without dying could have many unforeseen circumstances and she was not willing to risk Harry. She would automatically transfer her power into him the second she was hit with the killing curse, which should make Harry immune to it once Voldemort turned to him.
It had never been done before, it was pure speculation. But it would work, it needed to work! Just slightly more time...!
"Not Harry, please! Have mercy... Have mercy, I'll do anything!"
"Stand aside, now!"
"Please, take me, kill me instead!"
She didn't know nor care why he kept telling her to stand aside, but she knew that only that had given her enough time to prepare everything. She still refused to budge, begging him for mercy though knowing he would have none.
The last thing she heard was her own scream as the curse connected, painfully tearing the foreign power away and hopefully leading it into her most beloved son, before she knew no more...
Voldemort never noticed that the child, that had started crying the second the Killing Curse had hit his mother, now sported a scar looking like the Sowilo rune - or, if one didn't know much about runes, like a lightning bolt - that hadn't been there before.
Laughing cruelly he pointed his wand at the freshly orphaned boy and cast the Killing Curse a third time, sealing his own fate...
So... A new multichaptered story! Originally I wanted to finish 'Snake Whisper' before starting anything new, but this plotbunny just didn't want to leave and I needed to write it down! But don't worry, I won't abandon my other story because of this one.
It will have powerful!Harry and probably something like manipulative!Dumbledore, so if you're not a big fan of that idea this story probably won't appeal to you (though I will try to give him weaknesses too and he will have his fair share of opponents I guess)
Though I have to admit, though I do have a good idea about the beginning, I'm quite unsure regarding things like Harry's friends, his house and maybe even a potential love interest much later. I'm open for any ideas here, except for Ginny, Hermione, Cho, Ron or Snape as Harry's love interests. Sorry people, but I really don't ship these. :/
Excluding aforementioned things, feel free to suggest anything you like, I'll see what I can do! :)
Other than that, this chapter was only a prologue, the perspective will - of course - change to Harry's afterwards and since this is pretty much the past there isn't much to say about Harry yet, but I hope you liked it anyway.
(A short disclaimer: Of course, Harry Potter doesn't belong to me. Also, I've used a few dialogue lines from PoA regarding James, Lily and Voldemort at Halloween)