Harry sat in his cupboard, tears stinging his eyes, but the stinging was nothing compared to the dull, throbbing ache in his stomach where Dudley had had eight people punch him, all in the same spot. Eight people! Harry lay down on the hard wooden floor and pulled off his glasses so he could rub the tears out of his eyes. Every single one of those people was so much bigger than he was; it was completely unfair! Harry choked back a sob, afraid to wake his aunt and uncle. They could be so scary, he was only seven years old but that didn't stop them from locking him in a cupboard so he had nowhere to run!
Harry always felt most frightened when he had nowhere to run, and he bet Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia knew it too. Harry sat up as his eyes narrowed in anger, frustration but mostly hurt. Especially in his stomach. Harry looked down at it, he knew it would be useless as it was pitch black in the cupboard now that his lightbulb had run out, but he felt the need to at least try and see the damage.
Honestly, though, how could Uncle Vernon have blamed it on him? Dudley got mad at Harry because he was reading a book, a book meant for children in middle school maybe, on mathematics, but just because Harry was smart and happened to like math, it didn't mean that Dudley should get eight people to all punch him in the same spot!
And when the two of them came home, Vernon punished Harry for doing something that would make Dudley feel stupid! Then, to top it off, he called Aunt Petunia, who came home from her bridge club with an armload of treats and new toys for Dudley, and a rock for Harry. Then Harry had had to make everyone dinner, despite hardly being able to breathe, wasn't allowed to eat anything except for one glass of water, and got locked in his cupboard without even a new lightbulb!
Harry trembled in anger, his little-kid fists balled up as tight as they could go. He raised his fist to in front of his face, but he still couldn't see it. The blackness was overpowering. Harry's breathing suddenly got shallow with fear when he realized how dark it truly was. With his clenched fist still raised, more now out of fear, he desperately wished for light.
And suddenly there was. Harry blinked and fell backwards, hitting his head. "Ow," he muttered despite himself. He reached to rub his head when he realized the light was following his hand. Or, wait, no - the light was coming from his hand!
Slowly, Harry used his other hand to put his glasses back on. Then, dizzy, he leaned back against the wall. All of a sudden the pain in his stomach seemed to go away, probably from shock. Afraid he would faint, and that the Dursleys would hear him and find him passed out with his hand glowing, Harry decided he needed to distract himself now, and then in a few minutes or so when he was calm again he would figure out 1) what was going on and 2) how to get his hand to stop glowing.
So Harry did what he always did when his emotions became too much: he pulled out his 7 year mathematics book. Harry especially liked that one because he was seven and so was the book... kind of. But to his seven-year-old self, it was enough.
Harry liked mathematics because everything was so orderly. First you do this, then that, then this, and then you have the answer by doing this. He liked how once you had a formula mastered, you could apply it to any situation and follow the same steps and get the right answer. Especially since his life was so hectic and unpredictable, full of hurt and other bad feelings... well, Harry liked the robotic-ness of doing the same thing over and over again but with variations to the numbers and formulas. Mainly, though, Harry just liked the puzzles, and figuring things out.
So Harry did a few math problems in his head, using his glowing hand as a guide to read the questions, and when the beating in his chest slowed and the dizziness went away, Harry contentedly decided that it was time to figure out the biggest puzzle of all: what was going on, and how could he control it?
Harry decided that the first thing he should tackle was to fix the problem at hand. Just like BEDMAS, which he had been doing in the book, if he worked out the small things, like the brackets and the exponents, everything else would fall into place.
So Harry decided to trace his steps. What had he been doing when his hand first lit up? He had been trying to look at it. Why? Because he wanted to see it. Why? Because he was afraid of the dark and wanted to see and be in control of all of his senses.
And there it was. Harry had lit up his own hand because he had wanted to do it. Which meant that if he wanted the light to go off, then all he would have to do was want it to go off.
Harry raised his glowing hand to in front of his face, just like he had before, and he willed his hand to turn off. Nothing. He tried harder. And harder. Harry began to get frustrated. His hand clenched into a fist. Obviously, he had done it before, why couldn't he do it now?
Then Harry began to get scared. What if he could never turn it off? What if, tomorrow morning the Dursleys came downstairs and saw his hand glowing like this? If they could punish him for reading a book, he could only imagine what they would do to him for something like this. Then Harry thought about how unfair that was. He hadn't meant for this to happen! And all he had been doing was reading a book! Why did the Dursleys punish him for every single thing he did?!
As all the emotions inside of Harry began to build up, Harry began to think he might explode. His head was spinning and his face was hot, his fist was so clenched that his entire hand was white and his whole arm was trembling with tension.
Then suddenly it became pitch dark again. Harry felt his pupils dilate and looked around in shock. The dark was overpowering, but before Harry could get scared again, he felt something quite pleasant coursing through his veins. He tried to put his finger on it.
It wasn't adrenaline, though that was there too, and it wasn't joy, he didn't think, but he couldn't be sure... Then he had it. It was power. Harry smiled. He no longer needed to be afraid of the dark - he could create his own light! Maybe next he could make his whole body light up! Or maybe he could change the colour of his hair! Or maybe he could fly! Or change his shape! Or change something else's shape! Maybe he could do anything!
Harry tingled with excitement, but he forced himself to calm down. He still had the rest of the puzzle to figure out, and he hadn't quite mastered the equation right. He forced himself to think over what just happened, how he had just not only willed himself to light up, but also willed himself to stop lighting up. And each time he had done it, there had been intense, multiple emotions running through his system.
If he could do that, it must mean that he had some sort of power inside him that he had unlocked with overwhelming emotion. But he had felt overwhelming emotion before, hadn't he? Had anything like this happened to him all of the other times?
Instantly, he thought no, he hadn't, but then he realized he actually had done things like this before. There was the time when Dudley was chasing him and Harry had somehow found himself on the roof, where Dudley and his gang couldn't reach. And that time Aunt Petunia had decided to cut off all of his hair except for one lock covering his scar on his forehead. He had terrified of the tormenting he would endure, and also angry at Aunt Petunia for doing that to him when he went to bed that night, but when he woke up all of his hair was back, messy and unkempt as always.
Harry could list more, many more times like those in his mind, but all of a sudden he was extremely tired. He decided he would experiment some more in the morning. After all, it was a saturday. Harry fell into a deep, happy sleep where he dreamed of having magical powers where he could do and control whatever he wanted. He dreamed of doing all of the things the Dursleys had ever done to him, only they couldn't change it because they didn't have the magic, and he did.
Harry was very happy when he woke up the next morning.