Harry Potter as written by George Orwell:


It was a bright warm day in June, and all the clocks were striking thirteen. Harry Potter pushed open the door of Number Four, Privet Drive, and stepped into the entryway. A smell as of boiled bathmats told him that Comrade Petunia, the building's Party leader, had been cooking again, and he shuddered involuntarily, wishing for the bottle of Victory Butterbeer he had secreted in his room to keep it safe from Comrade Dudley.

Harry Potter was an undersized boy, with sharp features and an odd lightning-bolt-shaped scar. Under his arm, he was carrying a package...it contained a big old blank book that he had found in a shop in the "Muggle" area of town. Strictly speaking, it was not forbidden for a Wizard to shop in the "Muggle" areas-there were few fixed rules-but it was frowned upon. He did not feel safe from prying eyes until he was safely in his room, and even then, the ubiquitous portrait that, by law, every Wizard residence and public wall had to have up could see him.

He looked up at the portrait. It was of a strange-looking man, with pasty-white skin, no hair, no lips, slits for nostrils and red eyes. The eyes were always set to follow whoever was looking at the portrait, whether there was an actual watcher there or not. Below the face, were the words: LORD VOLDEMORT IS WATCHING YOU.

Putting the package down on his bed-a quirk of architecture had allowed him to put his bed in a corner of the room the poster could not see-Harry Potter went to the window and looked out over Crabbeville. Had it always been this way, he wondered-the ruined houses making gaps in the rows, the ubiquitous posters the only spots of color in a bleak, gray landscape? Even the names were different-he thought he could remember that this place had once been called Little Winnings, or something like that.

Off in the distance, Harry could see London, or at least the great Ministries that dominated its skyline. They were the Ministries of Peace, which handled military affairs, Plenty, which orchestrated famines, Truth, which published the Daily Prophet and all other wizard publications, and the one everybody was afraid of, the Ministry of Magic-Minipax, Miniplenty, Minitruth, and Minimaj, to give them their Newspeak names. Each was housed in a huge, pyramidal building, the only new buildings in London since the Revolution. The Daily Prophet always talked a lot about how they were building new houses, but Harry had not seen a new house in years.

New houses, as well as many other things, were best not thought about. Turning from the window, Harry faced the poster on the wall, automatically adopting the expression of mindless happiness that was considered most desirable when facing the portrait of Lord Voldemort. Downstairs, he could hear the others who lived in the house-Comrade Petunia, Comrade Vernon and Comrade Dudley, and he made ready to go down and face them by pulling out his bottle of Victory Butterbeer and taking a good, healthy swig. As usual, the stuff tasted like cheap Chinese rice-spirits.

Comrade Petunia spotted him first, as he came down the stairs-she was a bony, long-necked woman, who was always peering around, hoping to catch someone doing something for which they could be denounced to the Death Eaters. Denouncing someone to the Death Eaters was a feather in one's cap, particularly if they could be made out to be guilty of thought-crime. Beside her, Comrade Dudley, an obese monstrosity wearing the uniform of the Voldemort Youth, was howling for food as she scooped out a boiled doormat for him to eat.

Later, in his room, Harry opened the book. He took up a quill, and began to write.

June 29, 1992.

He then paused to think. Just for starters, he wasn't sure that it was 1992-dates were vague these days, as so many other things were. With the first rule being "Don't ask questions!" it was easy to get things confused-people who asked too many questions tended to disappear in the night.

When he looked down, he was horrified. While he was thinking, his hand had continued to write:

Down with Lord Voldemort Down with Lord Voldemort Down with Lord Voldemort

With a gasp of horror, Harry slammed the book shut, thankful that the portrait could not see him. To be sure, nobody ever knew if an individual portrait was being monitored, but the safest rule was to assume that any portrait was being monitored at all times.

To try to drive the horror out of his mind, Harry began to think about something-anything-else. He found himself dwelling on a bushy-haired girl he had seen at school-the sort of girl he hated, the sort that was always answering questions, and loudly proclaiming her loyalty to the Death Eaters and Lord Voldemort. He wanted to kiss her, and never would, because around her waist she wore a red sash, emblem of the Anti-Sex League, symbol of chastity.

When he opened the book again, he stared involuntarily. The damning words were no longer there. Instead, he read:

Hello. My name is Tom Riddle. What is your name?