Hopefully this is the one and only Author's Note I'll be putting up (maybe another if an issue comes up that needs to be addressed), but I need one to issue some warnings!
First of all, this is a fem!Harry fic which contains time travel. This idea's been hanging around my head for years now, so I've definitely put some thought in it – so please, think of that before questioning the plot overly much. That said, I do appreciate constructive criticism, very much! I might even use suggestions.
I'm a very busy person, unfortunately, between university, being active in a youth action group (nothing bad I promise) trying to have a social live and living alone. Oh, and a job as well. So I might not update every day, so to speak although I'm not giving up on this story either! I always finish what I start. I promise :)
I'll put this story on both Archive of Our Own (AO3) and Fanfiction. net (here), under the same name.
Also - disclaimer! I do not, and will never, own anything, except perhaps the idea for this plot. Everything else though, characters, world, etc., belongs to the wonderful J.K. Rowling (and others she sold the rights to, heh). This is a disclaimer for the entire story, I think we're perfectly aware what fan fiction implies, pfft.
Ehm, I think that's it! I hope you enjoy and please leave a review if you have time. They're very encouraging when writing ^^ Happy reading!
Flashes of light. A single star living and then exploding. A great booming noise that reverberated through her very bones. Ripples like concentric circles through time as the universe formed over and over again.
If there is nothing faster than the speed of light, why is darkness always there before it?
Impossible green eyes snap open to a hazy world and immediately close again. She groans in pain, wondering what has happened to her as slowly awareness comes back to her. There are voices like static noise buzzing in and out. She catches only a few words before it all grows dark once more.
"-she ever recover fully?"
"We may never know. As soon as she is able to stay awake for longer periods, we will be able to make certain -"
If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, what sound does it make?
The second time she comes to the world was a little bit more clear. She blinks awake. She is in a bed. The sheets are white and feel soft to her bare legs and arms. She takes that to mean she's wearing only a short gown and there is a high probability of her being in a hospital of some sort.
She looks around.
There is someone sitting on the chair beside the bed, a little girl seemingly composed by an artist with only two colours; red and creamy white. She vaguely thinks that the girl seems familiar, but the thought slips away before she can catch and examine it. The little girl is reading a book so large it doesn't quite fit on her skinny legs.
The girl looks up the moment she contemplates the amusing thought and green eyes meet green eyes before the girl on the bed blacks out again.
Is there life after death? She doesn't know.
She feels too little, as if there isn't enough of her for some reason. It might be the clothes, which are too big on her thin frame, but she knows that's not it.
For the life of her, she couldn't have said what was, though.
"Haesel, are you coming?" a woman's voice calls out. The girl looks into the mirror one last time and then exits the small bathroom. There's a woman waiting in the room, sitting on the bed clutching a child's coat and a purse. She smiles.
Haesel tries to smile back. The woman – no, Ivy Evans, Aunt Ivy, not the woman – clearly appreciates the effort and holds the coat out.
"Come here, I'll help you." she says. Haesel shrugs, mindful of the cast on her left arm and the bandages stiff around her torso and right shoulder. She wonders if there'll be a time she'll be able to move as a normal person again, but then she thinks of how difficult it was to move even her pinkie just months earlier and is thankful for the ability to walk again.
Aunt Ivy's hands are soft when she helps Haesel with the coat. She tightens the last button and sighs, resting a hand on Haesel's uninjured, or rather, already healed left shoulder.
Haesel has no words for her question, so she just looks at her, wondering. Aunt Ivy sits down on the chair beside the bed. There are lines around her eyes that weren't there before, and the hand falls away from Haesel. She wishes she didn't feel the cold feeling it leaves behind.
"Haesel.." Aunt Ivy sighs.
Haesel looks up to her.
Aunt Ivy doesn't know how to continue. She chews her lower lip anxiously, worries the clasp of her handbag.
"I know.. I know it must be bothering you. That you can't remember." She eventually starts. Haesel licks her suddenly dry lips. Ivy laughs softly, but there is no music in the sound.
"It would bother me, waking up in an unfamiliar hospital, being told that my father and mother are dead yet not even knowing who they were... It would bother me." she sighs again and looks up, this time in straight into Haesel's eyes.
They have the same eye colour, the same almond shape as Ivy's own daughter. They are the eyes Ivy and her sister Ianthe got from their father and passed on to their children in turn.
Ivy tries to hide a flinch. Haesel is the only thing she has left of Ianthe now.
"I don't.." Haesel doesn't like to speak; it shows in the hesitant way she utters the vowels and the soft, almost too quiet voice. "I don't remember. That is why.. it may not bother me. I don't remember."
Aunt Ivy blinks. She's back to seeing Haesel as her own person, Haesel knows it. It feels harsh, but Haesel can't remember this person Aunt Ivy compares her too – her dead younger sister who was apparently Haesel's mum. Haesel can't remember anything but curious flashes of a life that was her own yet not.
She doesn't mention the dreams to those who call themselves her family. There's blood in them, war and rage as humans fight humans and others, too. Though she can't remember anything about her own life she knows many things, and mythology is one of those. There are werewolves and centaurs in her dreams and that is why she can not speak of them.
Amnesia is much easier to handle than a mental institution.
She sees the pain in her Aunt's eyes, but Aunt Ivy is a good person at heart and doesn't blame Haesel, that Haesel knows. She pities her too much to blame her.
Aunt Ivy stands. "Come on, let's get home. Robert and the girls are waiting for us."
Haesel tries the smile again. It still feels fake and unused.
Aunt Ivy is a modern woman, and so she can drive. Aunt Ivy doesn't ask her to put on her seatbelt, aware it could rub agains the wounds that have only half healed. She watches Haesel warily, prepared to intervene should it become necessary. Haesel doesn't mind. She supposedly lost her parents and almost her life in a car accident, after all.
The drive isn't that long. Haesel remembers that someone told her the accident happened in Germany and that she'd been flown over to London soon after initial surgery, so her family could visit her. What was left of her parents' bodies was also flown over, but Haesel doesn't remember anything about a funeral. She assumes it happened while she was still in a coma.
Aunt Ivy had taken a hotel room in the city and visited the most, taking care of everything that needed to be taken care of. When Haesel was doing better, they moved her yet again, to a smaller revalidation home closer to where the Evans family live.
When they arrive the rest of the family exits the house at the sound of tires on gravel. There's Uncle Robert, blond haired to Ivy's fiery red and the calm to her liveliness, as Haesel has found out. They balance each other, and Haesel is glad. On some level she is happy these people are her family – it is easy enough to fantasise about parents if she has a model to build upon.
Aunt Ivy and Uncle Robert have two daughters. The eldest is called Petunia. She takes after her father and though she's not more than three years Haesel's senior, she already seems to be in a sort of gangly, awkward teenage phrase. The smile on her face is honest and warm, though.
In contrast Lily, the second daughter, is still a child and a very lovely one too. She has red hair like Ivy and the green eyes. She hardly waits until Aunt Ivy is out of the car to rush to Haesel's door and open it. She extends a hand, obviously wanting to help her.
Haesel can't find fault in her enthusiasm. Like always, Lily is mindful of her injuries, but she is also mindful of Haesel herself and chatters away a mile an hour about how exited she is that Haesel is coming to live with them.
" - and you'll be staying with me in my room, 'cause it's the biggest! We've got the bestest view ever, of the garden! I'll show it to you later, the garden I mean, I'll show you our room first -"
"Breathe, Lily-pad." Uncle Robert laughs, resting his hands on Lily's shoulders to keep her still. He looks up to Haesel. "Welcome to our home, Haesel dear. I hope you'll like it."
She nods. The house is moderately large, with a porch, garage and a garden in the front and the back, from what she can see. There's a large tree standing near the house. Haesel likes it. It may be just another in a row of fairly identical houses in the better neighbourhood of this little town, but it looks warm and welcoming, just like her family.
A warm feeling fills her.
Time passes, as it is wont to do.
Haesel heals in body, and she thinks maybe in mind, also. It's easier, adapting, when you don't remember how things were done before. She feels blank sometimes.
Luckily, she has sisters now, and they don't hesitate to write in the empty book she feels she's always been. She's closer to Lily. They're the same age, in fact, they even share the same birthday. Lily tells her all about it one day, full of energy, as Lily usually is.
"I was pretty sad I'd never met you, because we were born the same day and all! Mum says you're younger, because she got pregnant first or something, and that it was a huge surprise when Uncle Erwin called to let Mum and Dad know you were born. You were three weeks early! Mum says you were really tiny. I was way bigger than you!" she grins when she says that. She still is by a full inch.
They're on the swings in the nearby park. It's hot. Summer has already begun. Haesel has been living with the Evanses for five months now. It's been almost a year since she lost her parents and her memory.
Haesel tilts her head back and watches her hair fall like a curtain behind her. It's an inky black. It's the only real difference between Lily and her beside the height. They both look like their mothers, who were identical twins.
It seems like Lily has been thinking the same thing as Haesel. She stops the swing and looks at Haesel. Feeling the scrutiny, the black haired girl pulls herself back into a vertical position.
"Say, Haesel..." Lily lets her words trail off.
"Yes?" Haesel isn't sure if she likes the contemplating look Lily is wearing. She has the feeling that whatever Lily is going to say now won't be a good idea.
"You know, we look really alike. We're both from the same year – we even share a birthday!"
Haesel has the idea she knows where this is going and opens her mouth to say it's a stupid idea, but the words get buried beneath the lump suddenly tight in her throat. She closes her mouth again.
"We could pretend to be twins! Mum and Dad could officially adopt you or something, they've already got custody of you because they're your lawful guardians, but they could make it official! Petunia won't mind at all, she likes babying you more than me – which I am fine with, truly! -"
Haesel holds up a hand, effectively cutting Lily off. The redhead falls silent.
It is quiet for a minute. Haesel has tipped her head back and looks at the blue sky, contemplating the slow movement of the lazy white clouds. She can feel Lily's burning stare.
"I've always wanted a twin sister." Lily speaks up softly. She's dropped her gaze to eye her sandals, a hand twisting in her summer dress. "Tuney is so much older than me, and then Mum and Dad told me about you and how you were my age, and you looked so much like me.."
She pauses. A swift kick to the ground and she's airborne again. Haesel can see her in her peripheral vision, moving in and out the faster she's going.
"I've got to show you something, though!" Lily cries and then, as she is as high as the swing will go and Haesel feels worry coil in her belly, she lets go of the ropes and for a moment she soars.
"Lily!" Haesel isn't sure who is screaming until she notices she's the one making that noise. She jumps off the swing, her arms outstretched as far as they can go, willing with all her might that she could catch her, the girl that has become so very dear to her.
Suddenly she's there, clutching Lily in her thin arms and they crash on the unforgiving ground far to far from the swings to be all together possible.
It's silent for a minute. Haesel imagines the dust settling around them and is grateful that they're alone at the playground. It's lunchtime and they're going to be late, she knows that. She also knows she isn't going anywhere until Lily has told her what that was about, what she did... and what Haesel herself did.
Lily sits up first, pulling Haesel with her. She grimaces at the tear in her skirt, Mummy'll be mad now for sure – as if the scrapes on their knees and arms, the dust and dirt on their faces won't tell on them before she can even see the damage to their clothes.
Haesel glowers at her. Lily is a little intimidated. For such a fragile looking child, Haesel certainly looks very, very dangerous right now. Lily figures she's got no more than five seconds to start talking so she wastes no more of her precious time. Where to start, though? Maybe, as the saying goes, the beginning is the best place?
She's known it her entire life, but she's never had words for it so she's strangely at loss how to speak about it even though she's never wanted to do so more.
Haesel's left eye twitches.
"Right." Lily says and she's talking, then. She can't seem to stop once she's started, a bad trait of hers. "I've sort of had it my entire life? I don't know what it is, exactly – only that neither Mum or Dad or Tuney have it. It mostly happens when I'm angry, or hurt, but I've been able to do it without really intense feelings. It's hard to do though, I've got to focus very much, and I can't do much, just float when I jump of the swing, like controlling my descent? And oh! This, too!"
She grabs at a dead flower nearby. She's got no clue how it got here, probably plucked then dropped when it was less fresh than expected. It'll do for what she's got in mind never the less.
Lily focusses so hard on the flower that it looks as if she's wanting it to drop dead or burst into flames. Instead, it slowly starts to float and the petals regain colour as they open and close. She glances back to Haesel, triumphant.
Haesel's eyes are wide and incredibly frightened.
Lily drops the flower but the harm seems to be done already. Haesel is so pale Lily is afraid she's going to faint any second now and for a fleeting second Lily deeply regrets showing off. What if Haesel never wants anything to do with her anymore now? What if.. she doesn't want to be her sister now? Has she destroyed all her chances?
Haesel opens her mouth a few times only to close it without saying anything. Wind brushes past them and red and black hair is moved gently as the moment stretches on into eternity. Then, softly almost as if she's not believing she's doing this, Haesel picks the flower up again, holds it in the palm of her hand. She swallows with difficulty.
She suddenly remembers the dreams in even more clarity and she can almost taste ash and blood on the back of her tongue as she makes the flower float again.
Haesel raises her eyes and green meets green. With an improbably sense of destiny, both girls know there's no going back now.
Half an hour later sees them arriving home, dresses dirty and knees bloody. Ivy scolds them before sighing, telling them to go clean up before coming down for lunch 'and you're not going to the park alone now anymore, you hear?'
Lily grins as she catches Haesel's eyes and Haesel smiles.