Story Notes: I started writing this fic after everyone complained that my style of writing in my other fic was too garbled and tended to give too much information in one chapter so I thought I'll write a straight forward fic with little flashbacks and past and almost one dimensional. In case you're wondering, the other fic is NOT abandoned but on hold till I improve my writing and will try to reduce 'wordwalls'. Please review and hope you enjoy this story cheers.
Harry Potter, aged six, sat sniffing in his 'room', which was a boot cupboard under the stairs, massaging his jaw which throbbed angrily.
This was not the first incidence where he was punished for some mistake. He idly traced the wound on his scalp where his aunt had whacked him hard on the head with a saucepan for another kitchen related incident.
He had been cooking for some fancy dinner that the Dursleys were hosting later in the evening and as he expected, his aunt was busy with 'other stuff' and he had been warned of dire consequences if he did something to ruin the dinner.
It had been going well, and despite the growling of his stomach as he had not eaten since morning, he had taken diligent care in handling the different dishes that smelled heavenly and placing them on the buffet table.
He was almost done and was carrying the main course, a lamb roast when his aching hands couldn't take it anymore and the dish fell with a huge thud.
Harry stood horrified, looking at part of the main course which lay ruined on the sparkling tiles and fear clouded his mind. He was dead meat.
His aunt Petunia came running after hearing the thud and gave a horrified screech looking at the floor. Harry didn't know what horrified her more, her sparkling white floor dirty or the ruined main course for a dinner that was an hour away.
Either ways, Harry was terrified now.
She looked murderously at her nephew "YOU FREAK! CAN'T YOU FINISH ONE JOB PROPERLY?"
"I..I…I'm s..sorry A..aunt…" Harry never finished that sentence as a vicious backhand from his aunt knocked him to the ground.
"VERNON!" Petunia screamed, then immediately covered her mouth in fear a neighbor heard them, or worse saw them through the curtains.
His fat, beefy uncle came running. "What's wrong Pet?!" He looked at the mess on the floor and growled angrily at Harry.
Petunia began sobbing. "The dinner is ruined Vernon. We don't have time to prepare a new main course. The freak has ruined it."
Vernon looked terribly upset, which Harry knew was a bad thing for him.
Vernon consoled his distraught wife. "Hush Pet. We'll get something ready to make from the supermarket and whip something quick up. What do you say?"
Petunia gave a horrified gasp. "Ready to make?! Can you imagine the scandal it will cause if Dorothy of #5 even found out we used a ready to make food for a host dinner? Our social standings are ruined Vernon." She wailed.
Vernon grimaced. "What else can we do now Pet? It's all because of this freak! You had to ruin the main course itself didn't you boy? Make us hard working people look bad in front of our peers didn't you?"
"I didn't mean to Uncle Vernon! The dish slipped. My hands were aching from all the work and the weight was too much." Harry stammered.
"Your hands hurt now did it you ungrateful freak? Well I'll treat it later." Vernon said quietly and alarm bells fell off in Harry's head.
Vernon never spoke softly.
"I don't know what you will do now boy. You will fix this. You will do something for our main course or god help me, I will make you regret living rather than dying with your good for nothing parents. Am I clear?" Vernon asked quietly.
Harry quickly nodded.
Vernon looked at Petunia. "Come now Pet. I'll fix you a small drink to fix your nerves and we still have preparations to make. The Bakers will be arriving today and we still need to select our outfits."
Petunia simply nodded, and allowed her husband to lead her away. Vernon looked back and threw a hateful look which clearly meant punishment was on its way regardless of whatever he did to salvage this situation.
Harry gulped and considered his options.
He could not make a lamb roast from start as its preparations had taken him hours to marinate and cook and he barely had an hour before the first guests would start to arrive.
Harry grimaced and took the only sensible option he had.
Harry waited quietly in his cupboard and sniffed as the backhand from Petunia still hurt.
He could hear people milling about, talking and laughing, enjoying a few drinks as the men took to their cups and boasted about their jobs and income while the women took to smaller groups and gossiped about the dinner event.
Harry sat there, his stomach growling in hunger and sighed as he wouldn't be getting any food and closed his eyes for a restless sleep.
Suddenly he awoke to the cupboard door being opened loudly and a meaty hand coming for him. He yelped and tried to avoid the hand but there was nowhere to go and the hand yanked him out by his collar.
Vernon held him for a second and screamed "YOU NO GOOD FREAK! WHAT DID YOU DO?!"
Harry was terrified. "I…I didn't do anything…" He didn't finish as Vernon's hands punched him the stomach so hard that all the air in his lungs were knocked out.
"YOU POISONED OUR GUEST OF HONOUR! WHAT DID YOU PUT IN THE FOOD YOU MURDERER?"
Harry wheezed. "I didn't put anything…. I just scooped out the lamb off the floor… didn't have time… to make new one."
Vernon punched him even harder this time and Harry could feel a few of his ribs break. "YOU RUINED US ALL! MR. BAKER HAD TO BE TAKEN TO THE HOSPITAL AND THE REPORTS IDENTIFIED IT AS FLOOR POLISH! WE HAD TO GO TO THE POLICE STATION AS MURDERERS."
"I…I'm sorry… Aunt Petunia always insisted I use more…"
Vernon apparently had enough as he threw the little boy onto the ground with such force that his head the floor with an audible crack and Harry lay dazed on the floor.
Vernon, still in a drunken rage began kicking the downed boy hard.
"FILTHY FREAK! YOU COST US SO MUCH! MY PROMOTION! OUR NEIGHBOURS WILL NEVER TRUST US TO HOST ANYTHING EVER AGAIN! DUDLEY WILL BE SHUNNED!"
Harry was barely conscious, and he felt the rapid kicks on his spine and he blearily opened his eyes to see his aunt Petunia weeping for her lost social standings and a not a shred for concern for her nephew, her blood, who was being beaten to the death.
Harry's last thought before he succumbed to the blackness was not fear, but a burning desire for vengeance. If he didn't die from this, he would pay back his uncle a thousand times the pain he felt, and his aunt would watch helplessly.
That day was when it all started. The day Harry Potter or 'the freak' lost a little bit of his humanity.
You live around monsters, you become a monster. He wouldn't be the meek lamb he had been.
Harry awoke two days later in the hospital, his body in pain and his mind calm.
He wondered how the Dursleys had gotten him to the hospital without any questions about the nature of his injuries and found out from the Inspector that he had been beaten in self-defense.
Apparently, he was a troubled and mentally disturbed child and he had planned to poison the guests and the host for some unknown reason with floor polish. When it had failed due to wrong dosage, he had gotten sloppy and tried to murder his family with Vernon's golf club.
Vernon, the brave family man, had a little bit to drink after the party and was not in the state to 'talk peacefully' with his 'criminal nephew' and had punched the demon child in self-defense and the child had a concussion, hit his head on the door post hard and while stumbling back, fell down the stairs hard, resulting in the injuries along his spine.
"It's a lie! My uncle assaulted me!"
"Yes, he did mention you would say that and we also considered the possibility. We had forensics check the dishes and the floor polish bottle and found only your fingerprints. We also found your prints on the golf club and found your blood on the stairs." The inspector said blandly.
He the continued "We also checked your report and found no traces of the poisoned food in your system which means you took precautions not to eat it yourself. Boy, I advise you not to lie anymore, you're in serious trouble as it is."
The police in charge had told him that since he was too young to be put in juvie but threatened him that if he was ever got a complaint on criminal behavior again, the age wouldn't be considered as well.
Harry knew at that time, the evidence was literally against him.
After he left, Vernon came in looking gleeful.
"Well freak, how do you feel?" he asked with a toothy grin. He continued without pause, "Well we can't get rid of you yet but the kind inspector informs me that due to your wicked actions, we are allowed to be slightly stricter than we were with you. Oh, things are going to change for you boy!"
He then leaned forward and whispered softly "I was all about to beat you up and then dump your body somewhere for the animals to feast upon, that's what your disgusting self is worth, food for a pathetic animal but Petunia had this idea to convince everyone that it was all your fault the dinner went wrong. Guess what?" Vernon gave a broad grin. "Everyone is convinced you tried to murder them and due to your age, you couldn't figure out the dosage for it to be poisonous to all of them. Poor Mr. Baker." Vernon adopted a mocking sad face. "was old and was affected but after hearing this, he called me to assure that he did not hold me or 'my family' responsible for the incident and my promotion is still on!"
The door opened suddenly and the inspector stepped inside. Vernon immediately pasted his fake, genial smile that made him look part of a nice family, not the murdering filth Harry knew him to be.
"All well Mr. Dursley?" the inspector asked with a small smile.
Vernon gave a very convincing sad smile. "Well, as fine as it can be expected. Even if the child tried to murder my family, he is still blood by relation and I was just telling him we should try to get along."
The inspector looked extremely sympathetic. Harry almost scoffed at the gullibility of the law enforcer.
"You are a credit to the society Mr. Dursley. We need more people like you in this world." He then addressed the sullen boy. "Mr. Potter, try to get along with your family. You are lucky to be blessed with such a kind and loving family."
"Yeah, kind and loving." Harry whispered lowly, numb at the hypocrisy in front of him.
The officer's face hardened. "We will not take action against the poisoning attempt as well as the assault attempt will be ignored for now since nobody was seriously harmed though it will be in your record and if you're found guilty of one more criminal activity, your entire criminal record will be considered and you will be in serious trouble. Do you understand me?"
"Yes sir." Harry answered sullenly.
"A criminal record at age 6. How sad." Vernon covered his face as if in great pain but only Harry could see the manic grin on his face.
Could life get better for Vernon Dursley?
Harry was released a week later and immediately upon his arrival, he noticed the change in attitude towards him.
Before, the people of Private Drive generally ignored him or treated him with disdain due to his parents being no good bums who had too much of free drugs and got themselves killed leaving their weird infant son for the hard working, normal Dursleys to raise.
A rumor that the Dursleys had kindly spread for him so that none of the parents would allow their kids to be friends with the little boy.
Now, the attitude was fierce dislike, bordering on outright hostility was being directed at him. Harry guessed that the people did not like his supposed poisoning incident. His aunt and cousin went inside but Harry had a 'concerned neighbor' who wanted to speak to him.
Mr. Connors, of #8 Private Drive, also the head of the night community watch was waiting to welcome him with a scowl.
"Listen here you demon spawn! You are lucky the law considers you too young to be tried at court. If I had my way, you would be locked inside a cell and the key thrown away for your criminal thinking."
"Well it's good you don't have your way then Mr. Connors." Harry snapped back. The little boy had enough of the events from the past two days.
"HOW DARE YOU, YOU VILE BOY." Connors drew his hand back and slapped the boy. Connors was reputed for having a slightly short fuse. 'Well any man would be considered a little short tempered' the locality would joke.
Harry fell to the ground, stunned and holding his aching cheek. He could see Vernon, for he now refused to acknowledge him as 'uncle', trying hard not to smile while Petunia gasped from the door, no doubt worried how it would reflect badly on her. Dudley said he was hungry.
He looked up to see Connors, towering over him breathing heavily and looked furiously at the child he had struck down.
Harry was hurt but he refused to give anyone the satisfaction of seeing a single tear fall. He focused all of his willpower into stopping him from crying and to his enormous surprise, the tears receded and he felt stoic.
Connors looked at Vernon and said "This child is a difficult one Vernon. You better break his bad habits soon or he will grow up to bring a bad name to you and our community as well."
Connors glared at the small boy who glared back balefully. Connors was unnerved at the dislike he saw in the boy's piercing green eyes and gulped involuntarily.
Vernon replied "Yes Sean. He will be a bad influence on Dudley if I don't correct his thinking. Luckily, the inspector allowed a little corporal punishment to be used to correct this demon spawn." He leaned in a little closer. "Between you and me, I don't think a little is enough to correct him."
Sean Connors nodded gravely. "Yes, a few hours to the cane in the boy's life will do him some good." He then looked at Harry and said "I'll be watching you boy. If I find you doing even something even a little suspicious at night during my watch, I'll hand you to the police but not before knocking your teeth out. Understand?"
Harry didn't answer but his glare was clear. It was not agreed upon.
Vernon noticed the tension and decided to move along. "I'll see you for the usual drinks on Saturday Sean. Best get this hooligan inside. I have a few new rules I need to inform him about."
Sean nodded. "You're a good man Vernon Dursley. In spite of the chance to get rid of him to some orphanage, you chose to correct the boy, rather than abandon your problems. I'm honored to call you a friend."
Vernon blushed in spite of himself, and Harry whistled, in spite of himself "What a tosser."
Harry was forcefully thrown against the wall, again, as soon as Vernon hastily closed the door and closed the blinds. Harry winced as pain shot up on his back but he did not feel the fear he usually felt the last time. Something was different.
The defiance in Harry's eyes made Vernon angered Vernon even more and he threw a punch at the boy's jaw which made Harry wince again but he did not utter a word.
Vernon threw two more punches before grabbing him by the collar and held him up. "Listen here and listen well freak! From tomorrow in addition to the cooking, you will do the cleaning, dusting and gardening in this house. Once a month you clean the garage and you will wash the car every evening. Are we clear freak?"
"ARE WE CLEAR FREAK?!"
"That's sir or Uncle Vernon to you freak!" Vernon screamed, spittle flying off his mouth as he shook the boy roughly.
"You are no Uncle of mine." Harry whispered, in obvious pain but a terrible intensity in his eyes.
Vernon paused for a second before he forcefully yanked the boot cupboard door open and threw the boy inside, smiling satisfied at the sound of the body hitting the wall before closing the door.
Inside Harry took a moment to stare up at the ceiling before he gave blood stained grin to himself. "If I show that I feel bad or feel fear, they will use it to hurt me even more. If I don't feel, what can they do?
His last thought before losing consciousness was "I will not let anyone bully me because I feel. I will not feel."
With that, the little boy lost his ability to feel fear and most of his other emotions to protect himself from abuse.
The next few years proceeded in the same routine but with a few changes. Harry did the work he was assigned and went about without complaint. He did the cooking, gardening, cleaning, painting and dusting in a routine he had come to get bored of until school had begun.
Initially, the Dursleys were against sending him to a school and waste money but when one of the neighbors had idly commented it was such a generous gesture of the Dursleys to provide education to a delinquent like Harry, they had smiled painfully and enrolled Harry as well.
Of course, harry had shown no outwards feelings when informed he had school along with his usual chores and gave no response.
The Dursleys were initially worried that the beating had damaged the boy's brain and he was a mental cripple now but they could see the churning hatred behind the boy's eyes that unnerved them. Vernon tried to beat it out the boy, even going as far as to hit him with a hot poker iron before Petunia stopped him and reminded him the school would ask questions about his injuries.
Vernon took to drinking at night and his alcohol fueled rages were frequent. The man was cunning enough to hide it from others but he had become a dependent alcohol user. Petunia didn't say a word as Harry was there to feel the brunt of his rages and as long as Vernon didn't hurt her or her precious 'Dudders', she would look the other way.
Harry's break from his domestic life came in the form of school. He was inwardly delighted to find that he was almost prodigious in school and no matter how much Vernon tried, he could not break Harry's habit of scoring first in the class, beating Dudley scores by an enormous margin.
Second, he had found from the school records which Petunia had to provide, the names of his parents, James Potter and Lily Potter nee Evans. Before this, his own parents' names were unknown from him as Vernon had tried to convince him it was 'the bastard' and his 'cheap whore' when Dudley wasn't around.
They didn't want to corrupt the poor boy.
He had no friends in school since the parents of the children were informed, he was a highly notorious boy with a criminal record for assault and attempted murder and Harry cared less. From the fateful day in the cupboard, he did not feel the crushing power of loneliness and was perfectly fine to be with himself for company.
The teachers were initially delighted at his performance in their classes but as the rumors about him spread and his criminal record's existence, they accused him of cheating in exams. Harry had scoffed and said nothing.
They had made him rewrite the exams once when he was the only one in the room and two teachers keeping watch on him. Harry scored a perfect score and threw them a mocking smirk which infuriated them.
The teachers' attempts to undermine his intelligence had amused Harry and he had shoved the results back to their face but he realized it was a mistake, Harry acknowledged. They could hold a grudge and it didn't matter the grudge was against a nine year old boy. They held a grudge by ignoring him in class and outside.
Someone, Vernon Harry was sure, let slip to Dudley that if Harry was caught doing a criminal activity again, he would be sent to jail. Dudley, in a remarkable bout of intelligence, would bother Harry in small ways, like stealing his meagre stationary, tripping him in the recess and insulting and ganging up on him.
The fat tub of lard had limited insults but had a penchant for destructive thinking like his father. When everything else failed, he and his gang would corner him behind the school, away from the negligent eyes of the teachers and beat him up.
Harry, never once fell for the trap and struck back. Compared to the father, the son had nothing in his chubby punches and his body had become very durable by now. The insults, while would have worked against any other child, Harry felt nothing. The juvenile insults, the cruel laughter didn't bother Harry. At all.
He did not strike back but he remembered the names and faces of his tormentors. His almost 'magical' memory allowed him to keep track of all the abuse he endured and often he consoled himself saying he would have his revenge one day.
One day, he would beat Piers Polkiss and Andrew Farman to their deaths with his bare hands.
Dudley, on the other hand, he had special plans.
When Harry was 10 years old, school was closed due to a social threat. An infamous mass murderer had escaped and he was supposedly spotted near the Surrey area. The locality had decided to cancel all activities for safety sakes and advised the people to stay inside as the authorities scoured the area for the killer.
Sunny 'The Penguin' Sands was charged for theft, arson, first degree murder, smuggling drugs and arms, running a mafia gang and a few more charges and such a dangerous man being armed and around meant nothing to the Dursleys because Dudley was throwing a tantrum.
Dudley wanted cookies to eat while watching the new season of Doug and they were out of cookies. Since all supermarkets were closed, his favorite cookies were unavailable.
The decision was unanimous.
Harry would go in the pouring rain and get some milk and butter for the cookies, and if he knew what's good of him, he would finish baking the cookies before the show started.
Harry walked in the pouring rain without a care in the world, the cold rain not bothering him in the slightest. He walked a few blocks and got the ingredients and was walking back when he felt someone was following him.
He looked back and saw some rustling in the bushes near the park which Dudley frequently hung around, bullying the other little kids. It was in the corner of private Drive and not easily visible to the houses.
Harry called out. "Hello, anyone there?"
There was a rustle and a man burst out of the bushes and came running at him. Harry did not move, merely cocked his head and looked.
The man looked confused. "Uhhh kid.. you're supposed to scream, drop the goodies and run for your life while I eat."
Harry studied the man. "Why would I do that?"
The man looked really confused now. "That's how it works..? Aren't kids supposed to be scared of everything?"
"I am not scared of you." Harry said simply.
The man nodded dazed. "Uh huh."
Harry continued "As for the 'goodies', why would you want milk and butter?"
The man's eyes glazed over. "Please hand it over kid. It's been days since I ate."
Harry shrugged. "Sure."
The man looked at him as if waiting for something before he slowly took the extended bag and hastily snatched it. He was about to run but seemed to change his mind before sitting on the swing and hastily gulping milk.
"What's your name kid?"
"I'm Harry. What's yours?"
"I'm… call me Penguin." The man looked for the tell-tale signs of anger and fear but he couldn't see it.
"Huh, Sunny Sands?" Harry asked casually, as if it was the weather they were discussing.
"Okay. If you don't want the butter, give it back. I need to go get some milk again." Harry remarked and the man handed him the better.
"Jesus kid. Aren't you scared of me at all?" Sunny asked in total amazement.
"What can you do that I haven't already faced? Hit me? Insult me? Bully me? If you have a gun, maybe you could shoot me, then that's new for me. One more for the list." Harry said blandly.
Sunny Sands was gobsmacked. 'WHAT HAS THIS KID BEEN THROUGH?!' he thought furiously.
"Listen kid. Thank you so much. I don't know how to repay you. You really didn't have to help a mass murderer you know. You don't help the bad guys kid."
Harry shrugged. "You don't have to repay me. It was just some milk. As for being a bad guy, I'm sure you had your reasons. I won't judge you for those murders. Did they deserve it?"
Sunny looked at the kid oddly. "Many of them did. Most of them who I killed had double crossed me, cheated me or simply betrayed me. The others were simply on the wrong side of the fight."
Sunny did not know why he was telling all this to a little kid with green eyes when he had refused to speak in court itself, leading to his imprisonment.
Sunny hesitated before asking "Who is the ones hitting and bullying you kid? You should report it to the wretched police."
Harry considered the question and said "How does it matter when it's my own relatives who are the ones responsible? The police won't help me with this. All I got for telling the truth is a criminal record."
Sunny was shocked, again.
Harry's eyes suddenly hardened and he said in a frosty voice. "But it doesn't mean it's forgiven. Someday I will have my revenge against them al. Each and every single one of them."
Sunny felt the chill travel down his spine at how causally he talked about payback.
"Jesus kid. You'll be someone to watch out for. One day your reputation will precede mine. I seriously don't know whether it's a good or bad thing."
"Why would I bother about my reputation?" Harry asked curiously.
"Sometimes your reputation will do the work kid. I can't believe I'm giving murder tips to a …how old are you kid?"
Sunny sighed "..to a 10 year old kid but it's not the worst I've done. Okay, listen up. Sometimes kid, you don't need to get your hands dirty. If you have a fearsome reputation, the people's fear itself will do your job. They will not fight you just because they feel you are stronger than them."
"How will it help me in the revenge?" Harry asked, curious green eyes scrutinizing the mafia lord.
"In your case, you could mention your name to your relative's employer and your feud against him and if you are fearsome enough, they will remove him just to avoid being in your bad side." Sunny explained, somehow liking this lesson imparting session.
Harry allowed an extremely rare dreamy smile to appear on his face as he imagined Vernon having no money to buy his scotch, no gifts for Dudley and no dresses for Petunia to wear to her groups.
"Blood and violence will not solve all fights kid. Even the way you dress and speak helps you build a fearsome rep. I'd love to sit and talk but the cops will be onto if I stick here. Thanks again kid. I have a feeling we'll meet again." Sunny said, fastening his long coat that had come undone.
"Thank you for your advice Mr. Sands. You have given me a lot to consider. I hope we do meet under drier circumstances again." Harry said with a small smile.
Sunny laughed. "You've got charm kid. Develop into a weapon. Bye kid."
And he was gone.
It was a quite a bit of time before he got milk again and got back home. He got a small beating for being late and losing some spare change but that was it. After he finished the cookies, and dinner chores, Harry lay on the bed and thought about his day.
Revenge fueled him but the mode of revenge had changed. He wanted a name so fearsome that people would shudder to utter it. If he was even thought to be in some area, the public facilities would all be close. Most of all, his name had to carry threat and authority.
The penguin had given him a lot of ideas but the one that stuck was being a gang leader. A leader of a ruthless, powerful and rich gang that would be the biggest criminal syndicate in the United Kingdom.
Harry giggled deliriously. As Connors had suggested a few years ago, he would first destroy the name and reputation of Private Drive before moving onto its people. Financial ruin for some and utter destruction for all.
The last thought before he slept was 'I must be ready. I must be ruthless, cruel and strong. Only then will my revenge will have value. Only then."
As the boy slept, his mind realigned itself to fit the persona of himself which his mind had constructed.
The Butcher of Private Drive.
Author's Notes: Hope this was fine and at least believable. Mistakes were made on both parts but now the path for revenge is set. Oh and ten points for whichever house you're in if you can figure out the reason for personality changes. Review!