Teddy was reading a recent letter from Victoire, one of his cousins, when a loud CRASH resounded from the level below. Immediately, he jumped up from his desk, grabbing his wand, flung open the door and practically jumped down the stairs, almost crashing into a wall as he swung into the living room, wand in hand, hair changing colours.
"Oh Merlin," Teddy breathed as he caught sight of Rose and Albus standing in the middle of a giant mess, Al with his hands on his hips, Rose crossing her arms over her chest. It looked as if a tornado tore through it. Books were strewn across the room, pillows were ripped open, couches were overturned, sheets of parchment fluttered down to the ground. His wand hand fell to his side, and his hair changed back into turquoise.
Rose's eyes went wide at the sight of him, Albus already blubbering excuses. Teddy raised his other hand, palm facing towards them, the universal sign for 'stop'. They did, Al's mouth half-open, Rose's face turning red.
"It was my fault, Teddy," Albus confessed. "Rose and me were playing and I accidentally..." He turned to Rose, wondering how to explain the mess.
"He... Exploded." Rose said. "There was this light and everything just blew up."
Teddy dropped his hand, and stared at the ceiling as the two cousins continued their excuses. Why had he agreed to 'babysit' Al and Rose again? Oh right, because they were four years old, and had a trait of very young accidental magic. Even though he was only twelve, he was the only one available to look after them.
Harry was out on another mission after two Death Eaters who'd escaped Azkaban, having snuck out and undone the wards wandlessly. With no Dementors guarding the prison, the Aurors hadn't been able to catch them until they'd Apparated off the island. Ginny and Hermione had taken Lily shopping, Ron, Hugo and James going with them. Rose and Albus had refused and pleaded to stay with Teddy.
Teddy bit back laughter and feigned confusion.
"Did what?" He asked, his voice pleasant, heading for the kitchen. He'd clean the mess later. "I'm making French toast, want some?"
After Rose and Albus agreed to clean the mess up as punishment, Teddy jokingly said to be careful, and climbed up the stairs to his room, which Harry had created for him. He smiled. Aunt Andromeda raised him, but most of the time, he was with Harry during the school years.
He opened the door, flicking on the light. Technology in the magical world had improved, Unspeakables finally merging magic and Muggle together. He stepped in, the door closing shut behind him. He sighed, walking towards his bed and falling face-first onto it, rolling onto his side so he was starting at his ceiling, which was collaged with pictures.
Most people had pictures on their walls, Teddy found it nicer to have pictures on his ceiling, it was as if his parents were looking down from heaven (or wherever the dead went) at him. He smiled as a large photo of his mother and father waved down at him, his father wrapping his arm around his mother, who smiled warmly.
What he would do for it to be real. Was this how Harry felt when he was younger?
No, even though they had similar conditions, Harry lived in the middle of the war and was the force of it. Teddy, on the other hand, lived a relatively normal life. As normal as being the child of war heroes and Harry Potter's godson could be.
He sighed, placing his arm over his eyes and closing them. He had been only one when he made the mistake, he hadn't meant to, he thought... He sighed again. Calling Harry his father was one of his earliest memories, and the most bittersweet one. As soon as Harry left, the only thing he remembered was that he'd never call Harry his dad ever again.
Harry had always been a father figure towards him, even though Grandma Andy raised him, Harry was the primary parent to him. There had been several near slips, when he almost called Harry 'dad'. Moments after that would be tense, and they would ignore each other for a few days. But then they'd start talking again like nothing happened.
Teddy often wished he could just face his godfather, demand to talk with him, get the issue over with...
But he couldn't. He sighed, he wanted to talk, he didn't want to spend the rest of his life skirting over the topic like the plague, and he knew, somewhere, he could, but he wouldn't. What if he ruined their relationship for good?
He wanted a father, he really, really did. He often wondered how it would be, had his parents survived, even if it was only one parent, he would be happy enough.
Slowly, not even noticing, he drifted off into slumber.
His eyes snapped open, sitting up so fast his vision blurred into black. Groaning, he clutched his head, waiting for the nausea to settle down. As soon as he felt like he wasn't going to puke at a moment's notice, he stood up slowly.
All around him was grass upon fields of grass. As soon as his mind registered this, the field seemed to darken, and he glanced up at the sky, and stared, his mouth agape. Stars dotted the sky, twinkling like diamonds. He smiled. One of the downsides to Muggle and magic merging was that you could no longer see the stars clearly. The moon hung in the sky, glowing brightly. His smile faded. A full moon.
Since he wasn't really lucid dreaming, he didn't wonder why he was in a field of grass surrounded by stars, or why it suddenly turned into night. He found himself walking towards a random point in the horizon, not knowing why he was heading there or for what reason.
He just kept walking, and walking, and walking towards an endless destination.
He spun around, coming face to face with a beaming couple. His heart skipped a beat, his hair shifting through the colours of the rainbow before landing on neon yellow. His eyes turned an electric blue.
"It's- It's you," he breathed.
He'd seen photos of them, smiled and waved back to his parents. His mother's hair would always be a shocking pink, his father would look older than his years, but so kind.
"You should tell him." His mum -Mum!- said.
He instinctively reached out, but his dad -Dad?- stopped him with a sharp jerk of his head.
"Teddy. Tell him. Tell Harry."
He felt tears well in his eyes. "But I..."
His mum smiled, though. "Don't worry, we understand."
He tore his gaze away from them. They weren't real, they weren't real, they weren't real.
"Of course we're not real, Teddy," his mum told him softly. "But we still love you, as much as they do."
He shook his head.
He woke up with a start. It was dark, moonlight shining through his window. By the silence of the house, everyone else must have returned and gone to bed.
He stood up slowly, almost falling as black spots floated in front of his eyes. He grabbed onto a bed post, breathing heavily.
Teddy ran a hand through his hair. He was forgetting something, something awfully important. Sighing, he stretched, and made his way down to the kitchen.
A small, golden light cast shadows against the staircase wall. Someone was awake.
"Teddy? Why are you up this late? It's two in the morning." A gentle voice informed him.
Hermione sat at the coffee table, the Evening Prophet propped up against several piles of books, with more on the sofa she sat on. Next to a steaming cup of coffee was a candle flickering lively.
"Aunt Hermione," he whispered, his voice croaking from disuse. He cleared his throat. "Sorry, I fell asleep too early."
Hermione smiled. "We noticed, I managed to convince Harry to leave you alone."
Teddy tensed. He'd wished for his dad, Remus Lupin, to tuck him into bed every night, to smile next to his mum and to sing to him when he was younger. But no, Harry and Aunt Andy filled the empty positions. He used to love it, even though he constantly reminded himself that Harry was not his dad, just his godfather and uncle.
Hermione seemed to have noticed Teddy's action. "Sit down, Teddy." She pulled off her glasses and placed them over the newspaper.
Teddy sat next to her, leaning into her shoulder like he had when he was a child. She'd been the mother figure in his life. Ginny had been too busy to take up that role, and Aunt Andy wasn't always there.
"You know," she wrapped an arm around him, pulling him into a hug. "Harry really cares about you. He loves you a lot." Teddy closed his eyes. "When you were just a kid, and you said..." Teddy pulled away from her.
"Please, don't, Aunt Hermione." He pleaded, shuffling away from her. They'd had this conversation so many times over the years, and it always ended the same way.
"Teddy, listen to me." Hermione moved next to him and took his hand. "Harry isn't replacing your dad-"
"Why does everyone always assume that?" He asked, his voice a monotone. "It's not that I'm against."
Hermione squeezed his hand. "Then what is it?"
Teddy closed his eyes. "Remus and Tonks-"
"Dad and Mum," Hermione corrected him quietly. It wasn't right, she thought, to have a child calling his parents by their first names. It was impersonal, it was more like a distant-cousin/aunt/uncle relationship than one of a child and parents.
"They died," he continued lifelessly, the words heavier than their subject. "They died, and they were my parents. What if that happens to Harry, too?"
Hermione sighed, engulfing Teddy into a hug. "He's died before, and he came back. He's not going to die, Teddy. Not now. Not until he's old and grey and still as stubborn as he is today."
Teddy smiled involuntarily at Hermione's description of his godfather. "He won't hate me... Right?"
Hermione kissed his forehead and smiled. "Never."
"But that time... When I was a kid. He left." Teddy continued.
Hermione's smile grew sad. "Teddy, you were only one. The war had just finished and things were still being organised. Harry didn't leave you because he hated you, he left because he didn't want to replace your father. When you think about it, you're awfully alike."
"That's a good thing, right?"
"Yes, it is."
"I want to call someone my parent..." Teddy admitted. "Did Harry feel like that?"
"I didn't know his childhood, really... He never told us much. But he wasn't raised like you, his family wasn't the most caring family in the world."
"I'm lucky, then?"
She chuckled. "Harry gave you the childhood he never had."*
"So if I did start calling him my dad... It wouldn't change anything?"
"Nope, nothing. You're already an older brother towards James and Albus and Lily. You live with us. Nothing will change."
"Nothing at all?"
"Nothing at all."
Teddy pulled away from Hermione, eyes wide at the person who'd say the sentence.
Harry looked tired, a rough day of tracking down Death Eaters and other criminals always made him looked older than he was. At first instinct, Teddy wanted to hug his godfather, to tell him that everything would be fine, but he was too frozen to do anything.
Hermione leaned back into the couch.
Harry's face was expressionless, as he stepped in front of Teddy, before leaning down to his level.
"I'm sorry, Teddy." His face broke into a weak smile. "I'm sorry I left."
Teddy hugged him, tears welling up in his eyes. "It's alright..." He hesitated. "Dad."
The word sounded foreign to him, but it also sounded right.
I. AM. SO. SORRY. Very bad ending, but I can not write emotional scenes to save my life. T^T
Although, if you're brilliant at imagining things, go for it.
It's so early... I should sleep. Night, Potterheads!
[Random side-note, what do you guys think of a Doctor Who/Harry Potter crossover, starring the Twelfth Doctor as Harry and Romana IV as Hermione?]