Disclaimer: Right. The Harry Potter Series and the whole hoopla that comes with it are the property of J. K. Rowling and assorted affiliates. Anything that you don't recognize come from my own imagination, though I admit that they could have been inspired from other places as well.
Warning: Boy lovin ahead! Slash of the slashy variety ahoy! So shoo to all those that don't like that fact.
Author's Notes: Lessee…this is an Alternate Universe story that will have spoilers for all seven books, though they really won't count as much more than background information for Harry's character. The story itself will develop in a different place and with new and original characters. As is, the pairing will also be between Harry and an original character or OC, so you have been warned.
Read on and let me know what you think in a review, got it? No, go read!
The ceiling was dingy and cracked; the room old and dirty. There were cobwebs in the corners and shadowed places of the room, yet he paid them no attention. His mind was blank and his eyes glazed, tired. By rights, he should be someplace else, anyplace, but none were safer at the moment then where he was now, not with the Death Eaters in a frenzy and looking for revenge on the boy who had brought about their masters downfall once more.
It was still difficult to believe that the Dark Lord's shadow no longer loomed over him; that his destiny was fulfilled, however anticlimactically it had resolved itself. Voldemort had come after him personally when he was being escorted out of Privet Drive by members of the Order; the chase had been long, but the battle that followed it had not. Tom had not counted on the desperation and out of control magic of a teenage boy being able to destroy him, let alone each of his Horcruxes, wherever they might have been.
Still, it had happened. Like that Halloween night, the how of it would forever remain a mystery.
Maybe it was simply the knowledge of their existence that helped his magic find them and later wipe them out of existence. According the little news he received, Hermione had told him that there was an explosion both at Hogwarts and Gringotts shortly after Voldemort was vanquished.
Now, as he lay in an almost empty Grimmauld Place, his magic still destabilized and his thoughts in disarray, he didn't know exactly how to put himself together once more. Dumbledore was no longer there to guide him, and everyone else seemed to be too busy at the moment to help him cope.
He had been pushed to the side and left there once he had done his part.
Ron and Hermione would be of no help, seeing that his magic was too unstable for anyone not strong or experienced enough to deal with it. His friends could find themselves irreversibly injured because of him, simply by getting too close or saying the wrong thing and triggering a negative response. At the same time, those who could help weren't able to just yet; Remus was dealing with the werewolves, especially those who had followed Voldemort; McGonagall was still dealing with Hogwarts and preparing everything for the new term in a few weeks, after all, the school would have been closed if not for Voldemort's surprising defeat. Snape was in Azkaban and awaiting a trial, even as many within the Order scrambled to prepare his defense; it seemed that there was some new evidence left by Dumbledore of the bastard's innocence. Finally, Flitwick had been selected as McGonagall's Deputy, and he was just as busy as the former Head of Gryffindor.
He idly wondered who the new Head of his House was going to be.
All in all, no one else knew how to help him and so they had been forced to leave him alone until he could either put himself together on his own, or until someone who could help him became available.
With no one for company, seeing as Hedwig had died along Mad-Eye Moody, the only other person who was trustworthy enough and capable enough to help him, he was forced to endure his solitude; messages and food were charmed into his room seeing that no one wanted to risk being exposed to his magic.
It was too wild, too dangerous.
It had been a week since he had arrived and he wondered how much more time he had to endure before he broke more than he already was. And so his empty eyes just kept staring at the ceiling, counting the cracks there and keeping himself from thinking about his unstable future, waiting until sleep claimed him once more.
He didn't know just how much more he could take, how much he could keep from shattering completely.
Warmth was what woke him up from his last bout of sleep, along with a tentative, silky touch on his left cheek; like warm fingertips upon his skin. Light registered next, and he had to wait a moment for his empty green eyes to focus once more as they sleepily opened. Sound was the last thing he noticed; it was a happy, content humming that reverberated across his entire body.
It made him feel at peace for the first time since Voldemort had been resurrected.
Slowly, very slowly, he opened his eyes, which had fluttered closed without his consent, and looked for the source of the warmth, the light and the sound.
What he found was the last thing he expected.
There, hovering like a miniature sun, shining light to the entirety of the room, was a, well, something. It's surfaced rippled like water as the humming continued and as he held a hand up to try and touch it, the small shining orb literally raced into his palm, almost cuddling into it. It felt smooth to the touch, and his mind sluggishly connected the feeling to what had woken him up from his slumber.
A moment later, his focus snapped to complete attention, for his magic was visible to the naked eye but different from the last time he had seen it as he did now. He had expected to see it as it was before, when he had been confronted by Voldemort; licking the walls with tendrils of uncontrolled power, looking for something to focus on, to destroy. Yet now, now his magic, which had been swirling around without rhyme or reason since that day, without focus or control before, now flowed around him like a calm stream or a steady ocean.
It was hard to believe, and in wonder he felt for his magic once more, and found it to be under his control yet again. Slowly, very slowly, he began to bring it inside himself, to make it his once more, as it had always been…
"No!" a panicked voice sounded as if from far away.
And just like that, the humming stopped, the light dimmed and the little miniature sun had darted out of his hand; his magic, once again, began to loose focus and slipped through the fingers of his control and Harry watched, dismayed as it slipped like sand through his cupped hands, and it lashed out against the room once again, leaving gashes across the walls and the few remaining pieces of furniture that were still intact. The bed he was in began to tremble as tears silently flowed from his eyes, one at a time.
"Why? Why can't I control it?" he asked at nobody and everybody in frustration, completely forgetting the orb of light now approaching cautiously once more, as if in trepidation. Slightly droopy, if he had cared to notice.
He didn't expect an answer, but he did receive one, "You must not control your power, for it does not wish to be controlled. It wishes to be a bigger part of you, to help you and to live alongside you, not waiting in the dark recess of your being until the time you deem it useful and then use but merely a tendril of it. Your power simply wants the same freedom that you now possess." The voice was young, warm and caring; concern and understanding flowed in it in equal measure, and happiness. Yes, happiness tinted it even in its serious explanation.
Still, as Harry's mind once again caught up with him, the small globe of light brightened and approached him, once again touching his cheek. It was a loving gesture, one that brought comfort and soothed his troubles away. When the humming started once more, he immediately noticed how his magic calmed once again.
"Do not try to control it; sense it, allow it to flow around you and to recognize your wants and feelings; it is your power and you are its chosen, allow it to recognize you as such."
And as Harry followed this and calmed, leaning back into his pillows, he could literally feel a difference in his magic. It was not controlled at all, but it felt comforting and light, an enormous difference from its harsh, violent nature from just moments ago.
As he spoke, his voice was soft with wonder and curiosity, even as his eyes regained some of its previous life, "Who are you? What are you? How do you know how to calm my magic? Where did you come from? How did you find me?" question after question poured out of him until a chuckle stopped him short and he noticed that the humming had stopped and yet his magic remained calm, looking at the little light, which he noticed was dimmer than before, he smiled sheepishly, "Sorry, its- ah, well…"
"Do not worry," the voice answered him, and he noticed how the surface of the small sphere rippled as it did; however, it sounded slightly tired and farther away, "Though I do not understand why your power was so out of control, it did allow me to find you. And for that, if nothing else, I am very grateful. As to the answers you seek, I would need your help to answer them…"
He worried as the voice trailed away, as if it were exerting quite a bit of effort at the moment. He was anxious that it would disappear without him knowing who had helped him, if only a bit. He bit his lip and a familiar determination settled in him as he stretched his hand and picked the small globe out of the air, a little more fire entering his previously dead green eyes, "How can I help?"
Startled, the little light seemed to shine brighter as he held it, and so he caressed it with his fingers, as if to coax it into its full brilliance once again, and warmth once more emanated from it because of his efforts, "I will need some of your power…" it drifted off and dimmed, and Harry held it desperately, not wanting it to leave just yet, his curiosity spiked like never before.
"Take it! However much of it you need, just take it!" And as if hearing his plea, his magic surged like waves and wrapped around himself and the little light, feeding it and surrounding it. Slowly, ever so slowly, liquid silver started to appear and form into a thin chain even as a sapphire, about an inch or more in size, appeared before him, from where, he did not know. Then, gaining more momentum, the chain formed around his neck and attached itself to the sapphire as the little light melded with it until it resided within the jewel itself.
It shined brightly and the sapphire became warm in his hand as his magic receded into himself for the first time since Voldemort's attack, satisfied, as if it had done what it had set out to do. And as he watched the little light shine blue from within its encasement, he couldn't help but wonder if it had indeed done just that.
If it did, he might need to thank his magic after all was said and done.
"Ah, thank you," the voice said, and he looked at the sapphire in surprise, since he could hear the voice as if someone were standing right beside him where before it sounded as if it were speaking from the other side of the wall. "Now, I believe that you had questions for me, though I must apologize for my lack of memory for I cannot remember them all that well, but first, may I ask a question of my own?"
For all that his voice was refined and his speech patterns very cultured, it was both tentative and shy, and something in Harry yearned to put it at ease, "Of course, please, ask away; it's the least I can do after you helped me control my magic."
The little light within the sapphire seemed to perk up a little at that, and he was mesmerized by its brilliance after he spoke, it was as if it were smiling.
"Magic? Is that how you refer to your power? That is a strange denomination to be sure. Now, I am most curious, for through my research I have found that the people of your world are given names when they are born; if it would not be too much of an intrusion, or indeed, too pretentious of me to ask, would I be able to know your name?" The question, however strange it might be and however more questions it stirred up in Harry's mind, was made in an odd sort of tone, equal parts hopeful, eager and curious.
If anything, Harry could deduce from this that whoever he was speaking to was not from the Wizarding World, but still recognized what Magic was, even if they didn't name it as such. The fact that they didn't know who he was and the allusion to another world intrigued him to no end, though he would surely find out more once he said his name, "My name is Harry James Potter," he answered simply, not so far gone as to forgo being cautious.
"Oh!" came the expression of surprise, "You have three names? Is that a common custom? And do they mean anything within your society?"
It was the last thing he expected, since everyone that heard his name always went googly-eyed as awe sipped into their voice; he shuddered to think just how the Wizarding World will treat him now.
Perplexed, Harry simply stared at the little light, holding it in his hands, "you know, you only said that you had one question, not five," he said jokingly, though he was surprised when the light dimmed slightly, as if in reproach or embarrassment, though he didn't know how he could tell, and hastened to reassure the little thing, "I'm sorry, I was only joking; you can ask me however many questions you want, though I don't promise to answer them all. After all, it's not a particularly safe time for me right now, and I would first like some of my own questions answered before I can trust you enough to answer yours."
Taken aback slightly, but with a slight bit of understanding, the little light shined warmly once again, "Certainly. I must apologize as well, it is so very rare for situations such a these to happen that I am a tad exited, not to mention that this is the first time that I have been out of the palace, even if only in this form," he spoke, for it was certainly a boy, though Harry could tell that he was nervous by the babbling quality of his speech, "I can't wait to be able to see, but I am blathering a bit too much, aren't I? Please, ask whatever questions you think are necessary to allow you to trust me. I will not hold back any answer."
Well, that certainly brought more questions than answers to the forefront of his mind, so he started simple, "Well, why don't you tell me your own name, then?"
"Oh, I do not have a name yet. Where I am from, you need to prove yourself, your power and your abilities to the Council and the Overseer so that they might give you a name. Though I am not too old to be without a first name, my case is slightly difficult; I assure you, however, that I will be presented with one in time."
"Really? How does that work? And how old are you, then?" he had a lot of other, more pressing questions, but he decided to take this slow and try to get to know this little light and understand where it came from. He was sure that it was from no place that he knew of, that's for sure.
"I am 66 seasons of age," he answered, startling Harry until an explanation followed, "That would be 16 of your world's years, though they are one and the same; where you count by years and months, we count the four seasons and the phases of the moon." And that made a fair bit of sense, he had to admit, "As for how come I don't bare a name as of yet, it is a very sacred practice in my world; it is determined by our actions and accomplishments. There are some who gain a name at an early age, while others take years to acquire them. I have, as of yet, done nothing noteworthy enough to garner a name of my own," he said this last somewhat sadly before continuing, "Your name, as it is, would mean a great deal in our world; Harry would denote you as a Warrior and Ruler, a Protector of your House; James would mark you as a Successor and Potter would indicate that you are an artisan."
"I think I understand. From that point of view, I don't think that I deserve my names then, though I cherish them all the same since my parents are the ones who gave it to me," he replied softly, somewhat humbled by this strange custom. Still, he needed something to call the boy other than 'little light,' and determined to find a name that would at least honor this tradition. "Anyways, you talk as if you are not from this world, if that's true, then where are you from, how did you find me and why?"
Silence greeted his question, and the little light rippled as if in deep thought. Harry simply waited for the answer, flipping on his side and snuggling into the covers as he placed the sapphire on top of the pillow next to his own, surprised to see that the chain lengthened so as not to pull at his neck.
Finally, his answer came, turning his world upside down, "It is because I am not from this world, which we call Terra, or better yet, this dimension. I am from a parallel universe that is very similar and yet very different from your world, for one, we call our planet Lumentia, which is divided into three different societies. We developed in a completely different way than that of your world, and yet, we are still very much the same in all the ways that matter.
"As to how did I find you and why? Both questions are somewhat connected; you see, you are my souls equal, its twin and its mate. It is extremely rare for one from my world to be born with its soul's equal in another world or dimension, something that has only happened twice before in our entire history. This, however, isn't even all that strange; soul mate's could be anyone, but at the same time they carry the strongest bonds ever witnessed; they could be your mother or father, your sister or brother, your best friend or your destined lover. Whatever the case, you would hold an instant affinity to them and an unbreakable bond, along with certain abilities that are only possible because of that link."
The little light paused and rippled, its voice filled with nervousness and a slight fear of rejection that Harry understood all too well; he knew that this was a difficult topic for the little light, for whatever reasons, though he now knew that a sixteen year old boy stood at the other end of this conversation. Still, the thought of his soul having a twin or mate was heartening for him, giving him the hope and knowledge that he was not as alone as he thought. A small smile graced his features at the thought.
"In essence, this is why I ventured to find you," he continued, "you see, seven of your months after I was born, my soul received a great amount of damage, as if someone had tried to rip it out of this realm prematurely, leaving me weakened and my power in disarray. The best Healers of my world have done everything they could, but the damage has taken its toll on me, even worsening in the last couple of years. I was loosing hope and almost gave up on life until recently," his voice was full of melancholy and sorrow, and Harry could only listen in horror as he put the pieces together.
"When your barriers fell and your Power was liberated, I was able to sense you, something that had been impossible for me to do until now and so my healers, my teachers and my guardians came together to do the ritual that allowed me to contact you. It allowed me to send a little of myself though a small hole in the fabric of the universe temporarily, when your Power accepted this small part of myself and grounded it in this dimension, the ritual stabilized, along with that small hole and the link we share, and though it, my own body as well."
Speechless, Harry couldn't find anything to say, for this boy, not even a year younger than himself, had suffered because of being tied to him; everything he said fit perfectly with the attack that Halloween night, and Voldemort's resurrection a few years before. His soul has suffered because of it and his supposed destiny and that knowledge dredged up so much compassion within him that he would have choked on if it were at all possible.
So with tears in his eyes and regret in his soul, he spoke, his words broken, "I'm so sorry that you've had to suffer so much, if there is anything that I can help you with, to allow you to recover, please let me know…"
The little light burst into brilliance at that, gratitude shining out of it until it dimmed slightly, for whatever reason, "You have done enough already, by allowing this small piece of me to be close to you; my health is already improving."
Sitting up and clutching the sapphire intently he asked, "But is it enough? Will you be able to live fully as you are? Is that why you found me, to simply allow a small part of you to be here, or is there more to it than that?"
The little light hesitated, rippling in indecision, "This is not the best solution, but it is enough for me." He left the answer at that.
"You told me that you would answer all of my questions, please, what would be the best solution then?" Harry asked, oddly desperate, even as he calmed himself, knowing that his soul's equal was holding something back. It was odd, but he could already feel a connection forming between the two of them; it erased some of the solitude that he had endured for so long.
Sighing, the little light hesitated once more before answering, his voice small, "Very well. As I explained before, soul mates possess certain abilities because of their bond; they are able to heal each other's souls. However, to do so, we would have to be in close proximity, meaning that either I would have to come to your world, which is not possible due to my current weakness, or…"
"Or I would need to come to yours," Harry finished, already excited at the prospect of visiting a different dimension, one where he wasn't the 'Boy-Who-Lived,' it was a very appealing idea, for certain.
"You must understand, however, that should one of us cross into either world, there wouldn't be anyway for you or I to return, only the ties that our souls share allow us to do this. Once we cross to the other's world, that link, and the small hole that connects our dimensions will close," he explained, somehow knowing that Harry needed to learn of all of the consequences, before he did something he would later regret, "That is why I say that this is more than enough; it is sufficient for me to heal, even if slowly, but I will heal and again, that is more than enough," the other boy's voice was firm by the end, and Harry was certain that the other could cope.
But would coping be enough? How much time would it take for the others soul to heal? Was there really nothing else that he could do? True, it was not a decision to be made lightly, but for some reason, he knew that he had to consider it closely. Something told him that there was more to this situation that met the eye, and more to this strange world that was so close yet so different from his own. True, the thought of leaving everything behind made his stomach drop, but what did he have to look forward to in this world? Only his friends and Remus kept him here. Where they enough reason? Maybe, if there were a way to keep in touch with each other, it wouldn't be as hard. It was something for him to look into, that's for sure.
"In any case, I must go for now. I am still not skilled enough to split my concentration in two and I have to report my success in contacting you so that we might close the ritual. There are some things that I can do that will allow me to speak with you in a form of astro-projection, but those need preparation and a few of your days to manage. Would this be acceptable to you, Harry?"
"Yes, of course," Harry assured quickly, wanting to meet this other boy that claimed to be his soul mate. Besides, now that his magic was back to normal, he could move around the house again, and maybe even go to the Burrow, if anything.
"I will see you soon then," the little light said, rippling and dimming slightly until only a very dim spark remained within the sapphire. The gem cooled soon afterwards and whispered words of farewell drifted across the room quietly until silence reigned once more.
"See you soon," he whispered back, somewhat morose now that his little light was gone.
The members of the Order were surprised to see him so recovered, and more then slightly wary of him. A few of them knew him enough to overcome their slight fear of him and his magic; Kingsley and Tonks amongst them. Still, he wasted no time and sent a letter to Hermione and Ron as soon as he could and as the strange owl took off, he remembered Hedwig and missed her old friend all the more.
Still, he had found some purpose after everything he had been through, and this allowed him to put himself together once more. He could feel the sapphire resting against his chest and he could sense the link that he had with the little spark within it. He so wished that he could speak with his little light again, but knew that it would be a few days before that happened. For some reason he was becoming progressively possessive of the other boy, even without having met him, and he wondered if it was normal.
Still, it didn't feel wrong in the slightest and indeed, he could feel himself healing slowly as well, even if he had not suffered as much damage to his own soul. He felt lighter, if nothing else; less burdened, less lonely.
When Ron and Hermione arrived at Grimmauld Place the next day, he dragged the both of them to the library and told them everything that had happened and all that he could remember about his conversation with his little light. He even showed them the sapphire, though he wouldn't allow them to touch it; he was oddly protective of it, to tell the truth.
True, the conversation was long, and not easy in the slightest, but like always, it peaked their interests enough to garner their help; besides, seeing as it directly impacted him, their worry would have pushed them to help him, if nothing else.
Not wasting any time, they had all began to research on the subject of soul mates, other dimensions, damages souls and anything else related with it. When they exhausted the books in the Black Library, Hermione paid a visit to Diagon Alley, along with asking McGonagall for access to the Hogwarts Library as well.
Remus was someone who they called on almost immediately, though he hadn't replied to their letter yet. By the second day, they understood and confirmed everything that the other boy had told him and a lot more than the boy had left out.
They had a suspicion as to his little light's condition and the nature of their link, but they were looking for all the information they could find. Still, more often than not, all the information pointed in the same direction, the other boy would not recover without contact with Harry; he could heal with the link they had already established, but he would remain weak forever more; unable to live a full life.
It was then that his resolve settled, and with his friends help, he began to plan. They didn't try to stop him, now that they knew the nature of the situation, though they were reluctant for a great many reasons.
After all, they didn't want to loose their best friend.
However, they weren't selfish enough to stop him, so they helped him in everything they could. For whatever reason, his gut told him that he was in the right path and now that he had found someone who was both more than blood and more than family, he wouldn't let them suffer needlessly, especially since he could prevent it.
Maybe it was his saving people thing, but he couldn't help it. This time, however, he was not going into a situation blind. He was going to make sure that his plans were well in place and there was at least some way for him to communicate with his home-world.
When he went to bed on the third day after he had met his little light, he couldn't help the smile that twisted his lips at the thought of what the future might bring, and the new adventured that he might experience; all he had to do was wait for the other boy to contact him once more so that they could gain the information they needed to pull this off.
If anything, it would be an exciting couple of weeks, and a new reality to look forward too. One where the politicians weren't after his skin…
Author's Notes: Well, how was it? The preparations start next chapter as we meet with Harry's 'little light' and we find out a bit more about this mysterious new world. Until next time…