Hi all, here is another chapter that my beta Ensteiniumhas sorted out.
Harry Potter, the boy who lived, didn't know where he was. But what he did know was that he seemed to have appeared wherever he was, with a bang- a big bang, louder than anything he had ever heard. The ground seemed to shake under his feet, making him wobble and stumble as he tried valiantly to stay upright.
His hearing, which had momentarily disappeared, came back with a vengeance.
Screams rent the air, sirens blared and there was chaos everywhere.
The air around him seemed to be full of fine dust, making it hard to see even his own hands.
The dust also made it hard to breath properly, Harry thought, wheezing as he struggled to breathe. He pulled the collar of his top to cover the lower half of his face.
Realizing he had no idea what he was wearing, Harry looked over himself. It looked to be a dirty red jumper, dark jeans and a greyish cloak which covered him. Nothing he himself had bought or inherited, but he couldn't be sure, as the dust still swirling around him made it hard to see.
Where was Fawkes? And how had he arrived wherever he was? It didn't look like Hogwarts,
Harry felt sure of that as he saw shadows moving back and forth in the dust. A red light streaked past him, nearly hitting him as it went by and he heard someone behind him scream in pain.
Groping blindly for his wand, he came up empty handed. If only he could see, he thought, trying unsuccessfully to look around on the ground for his wand in case he had dropped it.
There was another loud bang and Harry felt the ground move slightly under his feet and bits of what felt like grit rained down on him from above.
There was a sudden gust of wind pushing at the dust and Harry saw a corridor of light open up in front of him, a clear path with walls of swirling dust leading out of the darkness. He moved forwards, hurrying to get out so he could see what was happening around him. Get an idea of where he was.
A tall man stepped into his line of vision and Harry stopped cold.
"Filthy muggles." The man said disdainfully, brushing off his cloak.
It couldn't be.
This couldn't be true. This couldn't be happening.
He'd killed him.
Laughter could be heard nearby and a man, dressed in Deatheater robes and mask, appeared next to Lord Voldemort.
"They are so easy to kill master! Such pathetic little creatures." Voldemort nodded at the man's words and watched as he fired off spell after spell into the dust cloud with obvious pleasure.
"Soon, we shall lead wizarding kind into a new era." Voldemort proclaimed grandly, looking around in repulsion.
"These little vermin will know who their masters are." The Deatheater laughed at his master's words and moved forwards out of Harry's vision.
Harry could only stand there in shock.
What happened to Voldemort? He looked so different and seemed to have become younger.
Lord Voldemort seemed to realize that he wasn't alone and had a spectator observing him.
He turned, and their eyes met.
Emerald green versus dark brown with the slightest hint of red.
Something was different, something was wrong, that, Harry could tell straight away.
Voldemort looked at him, as he did all others.
The hate, that small spark of worry he always had when looking at Harry, was gone. He didn't seem to know who Harry was. Didn't seem to remember their history.
"Well, well… What have we here? A little boy. Lost and all alone, in the big bad world." Voldemort said, making Harry shiver at the tone.
"Where is your mother and father, boy? Call them forth why don't you, and let me introduce myself to them." He taunted.
Harry didn't speak, he was too frozen and shocked to do anything but stare at his adversary. Before he knew it, Voldemort had hit him with the Crutiatus and he fell to his knees.
"Insolence! You shall do as I bid you boy!" Voldemort snapped, before releasing Harry from the excruciating pain he was causing. Harry struggled to stand on trembling limbs. He would not kneel in front of this... thing.
"You will bring your parents here, so that I may dispose of them." Voldemort ordered again tauntingly, waving his wand at Harry.
Harry felt calm claim him at last.
The confusion and fear was gone and the carefree feeling of someone else in full control of his actions was comforting. He knew the spell that was being used on him, knew he had no trouble throwing it off.
Knew what to do.
"No." Harry said quietly.
Voldemort's cruel mask slipped away and Harry saw shock replace it.
"What did you say?" Voldemort asked, shocked at the sight of someone standing up against him- a small child nonetheless.
"So, we have a little wizard among us." He said mockingly, eyeing Harry with equal amounts of disdain and worry. He lifted the wand once more and aimed it again at Harry.
"Imperio! You will do as I have demanded!" He stated forcefully, eyeing Harry intently.
"No." Harry said again, making Voldemort step back slightly in shock.
"You dare...You filthy little boy... You dare defy me!" He shouted, body rigid with rage. How dare anyone go against his word!
Harry, who had been presented with Voldemort's wrath before, stared back at him unimpressed.
The screams that had filled the air around them were growing fewer, and soon the only thing heard in the area were the sirens, still blaring in the background.
All movement seemed to have halted.
"Do you know who you are talking to boy? I am Lord Voldemort! Wizardkind will quakes at the mere mention of my name- already they call me You-Know-Who." He laughed in delight at his own statement, eyeing Harry speculatively.
"You seem to have some small ability boy." He muttered, nodding to himself.
"I see it in your eyes and your posture, the same promise I myself had as a child." Harry shivered in repulsion at Voldemorts words.
"I'm nothing like you." He spat watching as his words made Voldemort smile.
"You will obey me and bring your parents here boy." Voldemort ordered again, eyes cold. He lifted his wand once more and Harry steeled himself. He was hit by the Crutiatus and fell to his knees again, gritting his teeth in order to keep the scream of pain from escaping. Voldemort lifted the spell laughing in delight.
"You see that! That is what I am talking about. You boy, you have that something extra within yourself." Voldemort said thoughtfully.
"Bring me your parents and I may let you live." He offered grandly.
"I can't bring you my parents," Harry said finally, his voice carrying in the silence.
"Because they are already dead." Harry finished.
At this, Voldemort laughed, eyeing Harry with a strange glint in his eyes. His laughter was echoed by others, who hid in the slowly settling dust cloud.
"Dead? How convenient. Who am I to keep a child from his beloved parents?" Voldemort asked, lifting his wand once more, this time not to hit him with the Imperius curse or the crutiatus, Harry was sure, but with something far deadlier.
"HOLD YOUR WANDS!" A voice shouted out suddenly from behind Harry.
There were several loud cracks indicating the arrival of many wizards, apparating in.
Voldemort glanced around sneering at the interruption, then returned his gaze to meet Harry's green eyes.
"I shall spare you this time. But be assured," He paused dramatically
"That should we meet again, boy, you will not be as fortunate as today." Voldemort sneered, before disapparating with a crack.
"Morsmorde!" Someone shouted as more cracks were heard around them, which Harry assumed meant the Deatheaters had left.
Pandemonium erupted all around.
The screaming for help started again, there were several more apparitions before finally, the cloud of dust surrounding them was gone.
Everywhere Harry looked seemed to hold devastation. Houses lay crumpled with bricks spread out all over the street and cars looked as if giant hands had crushed them like paper balls before tossing them aside. There were bodies of people lying everywhere, some no longer moving, others convulsing in pain.
High above them in the sky, a huge vaporous skull had appeared, a snake in the place of a tongue.
Harry simply stood there motionless, and stared. He didn't notice the wizards rushing about, neither did he notice the people staring and pointing their fingers at him.
"Are you hurt boy?" Harry turned at the soft voice coming from beside him.
A dusty looking Auror stood, gazing at him with a mixture of concern, shock and a small amount of awe.
Harry shook his head slowly. He felt fine actually. Standing next to the Auror made Harry realize something very important however- he had shrunk. Shrunk so much, that he barely even reached the other man's shoulders.
"Auror Chalmers! Get the boy away from here! It's no place for a young child. He needs to be checked over by a healer and his family notified." Another Auror ordered briskly. Harry turned in shock at the familiar voice.
Bartemius Crouch. A very young Bartemius Crouch.
Harry didn't have time to question this, as the man next to him nodded quickly before turning back to Harry.
"Right. I'll take you to St. Mungos first. We'll be apparating." The Auror warned, before grabbing hold of Harry's shoulder firmly, a familiar wrenching sensation assaulting Harry. And with a pop, they were gone.
They appeared in a busy ward. The Healers nearby jolted slightly at the sight of them.
"There was another attack. More patients will be arriving shortly. The boy needs a once over, says he's fine." Auror Chalmers said quickly to the nearest Healer. Harry and his Auror seemed to be the first casualties having arrived there.
"I think I'll be the judge of a patient's health, thank you." The healer snapped, coming closer and making the Auror stiffen at his tone. Harry was dragged over to a bed and, after having the Healer clean the dirt away, the man began muttering charms over him, with the Auror posted nearby.
"He is NOT fine! He is in shock and has extreme muscle tenderness! A muscle relaxant and a calming potion should sort him out." The Healer announced, glancing toward the still present Auror, who looked relieved. The healer summoned two vials and thrust them at Harry. Looking at the angry healer, he gulped them down quickly. His trembling legs settled after the first potion and he felt somewhat more at ease after draining the second.
"Well we'll be needing the bed for actually injured people. He's good enough to leave." The Auror snapped. Another case apparated in and the Healer abandoned Harry into the Auror's care, without further ado.
"Come on, let's get going." The Auror said kindly, sending the rather brisk Healer a glare.
He then grabbed Harry's shoulder gently, and they made it out of the ward, which was rapidly filling up.
"I'm Ben Chalmers by the way. I work as an Auror." The man said, looking down at Harry with piercing blue eyes.
"... Harry." Harry answered quietly, thinking it strange that nobody seemed to have recognized him yet.
"I heard you...With the Dark Lord...Voldemort...Whatever he calls himself." Ben said, shuddering slightly at the mention of the Dark Lords name. Harry was impressed the man could say it at all. Not many wizards he'd met dared.
"What you did was pure stupidity. That man is the leader of a group of people that have hurt many people. How you managed to fight the Imperius curse I don't know." Here he took a breath and glanced down at Harry again in wonder.
"A small thing like you..." He muttered to himself, shaking his head. Harry noticed that they had made it to the apparition point.
"We're apparating again- ministry of magic this time." Auror Ben Chalmers said, before they disappeared with another pop.
They appeared in the Ministry Atrium and Harry had barely glanced around before being dragged over toward one of the lifts. They caught an empty one and were soon moving upwards.
"I'm sorry about your parents Harry." Ben said quietly, squeezing Harrys shoulder gently in comfort.
"... It's ok. They died when I was a baby. I can't really remember them much." Harry said softly, not wanting to lie to the Auror. Ben looked a bit relieved at his words.
"What in the world were you doing there Harry?" He asked after a moment. A disembodied woman's voice interrupted, however, saving Harry from giving an immediate answer.
"Department of Magical Law Enforcement."
Auror Ben led him out of the lift and through a corridor, leading them into a large room filled with cubicles, many of which were empty.
"Er, I'm not sure, but I think I might be lost." Harry answered finally as he was motioned to sit down on a chair in one of the cubicles.
"Where are you living at the moment? I'll contact your relatives. They must be worried sick." Ben exclaimed, sitting down heavily in his own chair behind a messy desk as he dragged a hand through his dusty hair tiredly, missing Harry's slightly panicked look.
"Er, I don't know." Harry finally answered at a loss. He didn't know anything at the moment really.
Ben looked up and stared at Harry for a moment.
"You don't know where you're living?" He asked, looking worried.
"I thought the healer said you were fine." He muttered crossly.
Harry was again saved from answering, by the arrival of an owl.
It swooped into the cubicle and dropped a letter into Harry's lap before perching on the cubicle wall.
Both he and the Auror looked at it in surprise before turning their eyes back to the letter.
Harry recognized the writing on the outside immediately and judging by the Ben's snort, he too had a good idea where it came from.
Written in green Ink the writing spelled out:
Mr H. Potter
Department of Magical Law Enforcement
Ministry of Magic
Harry ripped open the envelope feeling a desperate need to see what it said. It might be from McGonagall, explaining what on earth was going on he thought. But he could only read the contents in disbelief.
HOGWARTS SCHOOL of WITCHCRAFT and WIZARDRY
Headmaster: Albus Dumbledore (Order of Merlin, First Class, Grand Sorc., Supreme Mugwump, International Confed. of Wizards)
Dear Mr. Potter,
We are pleased to inform you that you have been accepted at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Please find enclosed a list of all necessary books and equipment.
Term begins on September 1. We await your owl by no later than July 31.
"You look surprised Harry." Ben said, smiling at Harry from across the table, after allowing Harry time to read the first page.
"They've left it a tad late seeing as it's the 31st today." Ben commented, looking amused at the shocked expression on Harry's face.
Harry stared at the Auror in silence, confused. What on earth was going on?
"Well then, Mr Potter, is it?" Ben asked eyeing the back of the envelope.
Harry ignored him in favour of staring blankly at the letter, turning it over just in case there was an explanation he'd missed somewhere on the paper.
The Auror shrugged and leaned forwards.
"No worries! I'll just do a quick check shall I?" He smartly tapped his wand on Harry's head, muttering an incantation over a piece of paper.
"Yes yes, here we are. Magical Birth certificate for Harry James Potter. Born on the 31st of July 1960, Parents deceased, closest living blood relatives: Charlus and Dorea Potter. Potter Manor, Godric's Hollow."
Harry snapped out of his daze.
"Who? Where? When?" He asked. He was sure he didn't know anything about any blood relatives other than the Dursleys and he was certainly not born in the sixties. He hadn't heard of any other Potters period.
"Godric's Hollow?" He asked, finally giving the Auror his full attention.
"Didn't know about them eh?" Ben asked. Harry shook his head mutely.
"Where have you been living then? In the muggle world?" Ben asked curiously.
Harry nodded this time.
The Auror looked down on the paper he'd produced and read it in more detail before nodding to himself.
"Muggle orphanage, eh? That's some tough stuff kid... St Dursleys... I've never heard of it. I bet the Potters didn't know about you when your folks died." He said, prompting Harry to eye him confoundedly. What orphanage?
"They'll probably be very happy to take you in. A wizard should be in with his own kind after all. No disrespect meant to the muggles, but they simply have no clue, am I right?" Ben spoke casually.
"Right, well, we'll have to get a hold of the child protection services and your relatives." Ben muttered quietly.
Harry however did not reply and simply stared at the papers on the table. St. Dursleys? Where on earth were they getting this information from, Harry wondered, feeling very perplexed.
"Oi, Martin!" Ben called out suddenly, startling Harry out of his dazed reverie. Another Auror walked up carrying a brown folder.
"Do you mind taking my new friend Harry here, over to Nelly for some sweets? According to this paper here, it's his birthday today, and it hasn't been the greatest day so far... I also need to make a few floo calls." Ben said, waving the paper around.
The other Auror smiled, looking oddly pleased at the interruption.
"Perfect timing, I've got a chocolate craving coming on anyway. Come on then- Harry was it? Let's go clear her out." He gave Harry a good-humoured pat on the back and led the way toward a middle aged woman standing by a food cart.
Harry turned to look back at the cubicle and saw Auror Ben walking away, towards one of many fireplaces in the room before Ben bent down to floo whoever he had meant earlier.
By the time Harry and Auror Martin, "Call me Marty", had made it back to the small cubicle, it was occupied by two more individuals apart from Ben. Harry, who had been stuffed to the brim with sweets felt as if it had all suddenly turned to lead in his stomach.
Leading him over to the cubicle door, Marty left him with a soft pat on the shoulder before marching off to continue with his work.
"Here we are!" Auror Ben exclaimed at the sight of Harry, making the woman closest to the boy turn.
Harry could see a man standing at the back of the compartment, but the woman's fluffy curls were hiding him from view.
"This is Harry Potter, the young man I was just telling you both about." Ben said making Harry feel self conscious, not that the woman or anyone else for that matter, seemed to have recognised him so far.
"Harry this is Anna Kindle, and she's going to help us decide where you'll be living from now on." Ben said, motioning at the young woman before him.
She smiled gently and Harry thought he'd never seen such a beautiful girl before. She looked like an angel with her curly blond hair flying around her face like a halo.
"Hello dear, I'm so sorry to hear that you are in need of our services. It must be awfully frightening for you?" She asked in a soft voice.
"I'm fine thanks." Harry mumbled, blushing slightly. She seemed kind, if not a bit condescending, he thought.
"And this, behind Anna, is Charlus Potter." Ben introduced. An older gentleman stepped forward and Harry gasped.
The man had dark unruly hair with a few streaks of greys and soft brown eyes.
He looked so much like his father, only a lot older than in his pictures, Harry thought dizzily.
"I'm not quite sure how you two are related but as he has appeared as your magical guardian on your certificate, we can safely assume you are related in some way." Ben said looking from one Potter to the other.
"Well I think it's pretty obvious that we're related! Just look at the boy. Why if it wasn't for your eyes, young man, I'd say you were my own son!" Mr. Potter exclaimed before holding out his hand for Harry to shake.
"Nice to meet you young Harry." He said smiling brightly.
"Thank you Mr. Potter." Harry stammered, grasping the older mans hand with his own.
"Please, call me Charlus. I have to keep young you know." He said winking, whilst pulling his fingers through his hair. Meanwhile Harry simply blinked in astonishment. A Potter... A real live Potter, right in front of him.
"So I see that you have received your Hogwarts invitation today? Bit late if you ask me, James got his earlier in the summer! It'll be his first year too." Mr Potter said reassuringly, pointing at the Hogwarts letter still on the table.
Harry's head snapped up so fast, he was surprised it didn't break clean off as he looked up at the man.
"My son, James, is also eleven." Charlus said, noticing Harry's wide-eyed stare.
"I'm sure you'll have a lot on common."
Harry's head was spinning with information.
James Potter, the piece of paper saying that he, Harry, was born in 1960, St. Dursley's. What were the odds if it all being a coincidence.
"So! Ben was telling us it's your Birthday today Harry. Congratulations." Charlus smiled, eyeing Harry with a slightly worried look at the lack of response he was receiving.
Ben appeared to be trying to get the man's attention, but was failing spectacularly, as he ploughed on, focused fully on Harry.
"Have you managed to get any cake yet?" He asked with a smile.
Harry shook his head, feeling tongue-tied. Could Fawkes have done this? Did he have such a power? Could the man in front of him actually be his grandfather? Harry lost himself in his wild speculations for a moment.
"Well what do you think Harry? Would you like to move in with Mr. Potter and his family?" Miss Kindle asked gently.
Harry stared at her, confused, as he'd obviously missed a bit of the conversation.
"Erm...sure." He said finally, making Charlus grin.
"Dorea and James will be delighted. We always wanted more children and James... Well, James always wanted a brother to play with." Harold said patting Harry on the shoulder.
Harry forced a smile, feeling slightly overwhelmed by it all.
"It will probably take a while for it all to sink in Harry. I suggest you take it one day at the time." Miss Kindle said kindly, giving Charlus a stern look.
"You don't know them yet, but I can tell that you'll be well taken cared of. If you at any point need someone to talk to Harry, I want you to know that I'm here." She looked Harry in the eye ignoring the others and handed him a small card.
"That's my floo address and it's always open." Harry blushed and nodded, making her smile.
"Well then, if I could have you both sign the papers and we'll get Harry off safely to his new home." Ben said cheerfully, patting the young time-traveler's shoulder.
"Ah, I love happy endings." He said, smiling happily.
Miss Kindle nodded and patted Harry's cheek gently.
"You take care now. And stay safe." Harry blushed yet again and nodded before looking back up at Charlus. He couldn't believe this. How had it all happened, he wondered.
"Right, do you want to go the orphanage and get anything or head on home?" Charlus asked, looking at him expectantly.
"Er... I don't really have anything." Harry mumbled. He had no clue where any orphanages were, he didn't think there actually was a st. Dursleys.
"Ah... well, don't worry! You can share with James until we get a chance to go to Diagon Alley." The father said lightly.
"Alright Harry, I wish you all the best, both with your new family and with Hogwarts. Mr Potter, I shall be seeing you later today." Ben said looking very pleased with himself.
"Thank you... for everything... um... yes." Harry stammered. He couldn't believe it, he was going home with what could possibly be his grandfather.
Ben leaned forwards, smiling, and ruffled Harry's hair playfully.
"You're welcome Harry- and do try to stay away from evil Dark Lords now, hm?" He said, only half jokingly. Charlus stiffened and gave Ben a searching look before putting a hand on Harry's shoulder.
Ben gave a slight shake of his head and waved them off as they left the Ministry behind.
Hope you like the chapter. You will notice that Mr and Mrs Potters first names will be different in the following chapters as I didn't know their real names. The names will change as my Beta works through the next chapters. Take care. Mina