Title: Dangerous Returns
Summary: AU. Three years after their deaths, James and Lily mysteriously appear in the ruins of their Godric's Hollow home exactly as they left. They try to pick up the pieces, but that might be a little difficult when everyone thinks they are dead. Includes whydoyouneedtoknow's Dangerverse characters in the story.
Rating: T
Warnings: Alternate Universe, James and Lily are alive, Dangerverse
Ships: (OC may refer to Dangerverse characters): James/Lily, Remus/OC, Sirius/OC, others

Disclaimer: Gertrude "Danger" Granger, Aletha Freeman, Meghan Black and various other characters, nicknames, dialogue, prophecy styles, et cetera, you may not recognize belong to whydoyouneedtoknow's Dangerverse with direct permission from the author to use them. Most other characters belong to JK Rowling. Only plot belongs to me.

Author's Note: This story includes characters from whydoyouneedtoknow's Dangerverse series. If you have not read that series, this might confuse you.

Chapter 1
The Return

Why am I here today? Oh yes, because it is the one good constant I have in my life. If you can call it "good".

As a cool autumnal breeze brushed past him, Remus Lupin shrugged into his jacket, and he started off down the cobbled road he had been down many times before.

It was the early afternoon hours of October 31st, 1984. To most people in the world, it was Halloween. To a large number of a special sort of people in England, it was a day of celebration, an anniversary of sorts. To Remus Lupin, it was the anniversary of the day three of his best friends were murdered.

Three years ago, I had friends. I had what amounted to a family. I had work – it was dangerous, sure, but what isn't? I had a purpose in life.

And then, in the space of two days – gone. All of it. Three people I loved dead. Another one a traitor and locked up forever. And the last one hidden away where no one will find him.

No one including me.

There were days in Remus' life where he truly thought of letting it all go. Of ending everything. It would have only been too easy. But there was always a voice in the back of his head, a voice that sounded a lot like that of his dead best friend, James Potter, telling him not to do it.

Usually I listen to you, Prongs. These days I'm not sure if I can do it anymore.

Remus sighed and looked up at the sky.

Tomorrow is full moon. It would only be too easy. I could call the local authorities just before sunset and report a rabid animal on my property. Then I'd leave the door open.

End of problem.

End of everything.

No matter how good one particular constant in his life was, this was definitely not one of Remus Lupin's better days.

But fate, as it so often does, was about to play a trick on him...

With these thoughts in his head, Remus walked down the road toward his destination. He was not at all surprised to see that there was already a small crowd there. They were not the first and wouldn't be the last, not on this particular day.

If Muggles – non-magic folk – had walked or driven by this group of people, they would have wondered why the crowd were gathered around an empty plot of land between a couple of houses. In reality, the plot of land was not empty, only enchanted. On this plot of land lay a house, once a normal house like all the others beside and around it. But now, it was in ruins. Brambles and vines grew over the wooden fence that separated the house from the on-lookers. The lawn had large weeds and dirt mounds in places. Just beyond the yard, the large two-leveled house lay. It would look like a normal house, if not for the rotting wood, weathered from the three years of disuse and disdain; nor for the large hole on the right side of the roof.

The house had once belonged to James and Lily Potter, and their infant son, Harry.

For a memorial, you'd think it would look better, Remus thought, But no one bothers to do maintenance. Even if they had wanted to, it would be impossible – it is cursed land. That is what Dark magic does. It curses everything.

Remus swallowed as his eyes fell on the large hole, and he tore his sight away from it and looked around at the crowd. He wondered if he would recognize anyone this year. For the past three years, there was usually one or two he could count on being there.

For example, Hestia Jones or Dedalus Diggle, two fellow members of an old group Remus had been a part of. Like him, they were some of the few survivors who had actually participated in the Great War. But they weren't present. Perhaps they would come by later.

However, Hestia and Dedalus were not as close to the Potters as some were. Remus was one of their best friends. One of their only best friends that was still living today.

Letha's not here either. Didn't expect her to be.

Remus had lost touch with Aletha Carina Freeman, best friend of Lily Potter, and one of her bridesmaids, shortly after that fateful Halloween three years before.

Can't blame her. I would only remind her of her best friend and of the man she once loved.

Remus' throat constricted as he thought of Sirius Black, Aletha's boyfriend before that Halloween night.

And his one-time good friend.

It is funny how you think you know somebody, and then everything you knew goes up in smoke and flames just like that.

"- heard their son lives with Muggles now –"

"Aye. Probably across the pond with the Yanks."

"Heard he's being brought up Muggle. Can you believe that? The Boy-Who-Lived being brought up Muggle?"

Remus scoffed, and averted his eyes quickly, when the people who had spoken up looked back at him.

Rumors. Always rumors. Just once I would like to hear solid evidence of where Harry might be. Albus Dumbledore knows, of course, but he won't tell me. Suspect it is because he thinks I'd kidnap the boy.

would kidnap the boy, Remus, a voice said in the back of his head, He's the only connection you have to your best friend. The only proof he ever lived.

Ridiculous. Even if I could kidnap him, I wouldn't. How could I take care of him? If the house I own hadn't already been paid for, I'd have been kicked out ages ago. Can barely afford to keep it, as it is. Oh, yes, and let us not forget my 'furry little problem'.

Still, the thought of seeing Harry, of having the boy in his life again, of having that connection to his friends in his life again… he had to admit it was something he had longed for. Something he had wished for.

Remus scoffed and once again, turned his eyes to the sky.

Prongs, my friend, what would you say if you could see me now?

He brushed a tear from his eye, knowing he would never get an answer to that question.

Why am I even here? he thought, not for the first time that day, I just need to go to the cemetery, say my final goodbye and then be off. Tomorrow it won't matter anymore. After tomorrow, nothing will matter. Not for me anyway.

But as he turned, a strong breeze blew past him, toward the Potter house. The window shutters and screen door fluttered in the breeze. Remus felt an odd shiver run down his body as he stared blankly at the window shutters.

As much as he wanted to move his feet, something inside his mind was telling him to stay there for just a few more minutes…

He inhaled a deep breath, as if it was the first breath of life, and exhaled, then opened his eyes. To his amazement, he could see dimly, though one eye's vision was clouded and covered in cracks.

Broke my glasses. Not a surprise, after...

After what? He couldn't immediately remember. He groaned as he tried to sit up, but every part of him seemed to ache. He decided to focus on the present, what he knew at the moment. He was currently on one of the steps of the stairwell that led from the entranceway of his home, to the second level of the house. Natural light poured in from somewhere, and he didn't know if it was morning or afternoon.

Had I slept through the night on these steps? I don't remember drinking anything last night and I haven't had a blackout that bad since…

Well… since my days at Hogwarts.

As he planted a hand on the wooden step beside him, instead of a dull thud of wood, his hand landed on a thick coat of dust and grime. He looked down at the stairs, and saw that they looked filthy. Dust, dirt and mildew.

What..? This does not make sense. It looks old and…

James Potter's thoughts stopped on the word "dead", and his last memories came back in a rush…

He could remember the aroma of dinner in the oven. Lily telling him to get the pork chops out of the oven while she put Harry to sleep for the night. He remembered walking out of the living room, to head into the kitchen when the front door had burst open… a man, skeletal, pale, eyes gleaming red, bursting in to the house, his wand pointed forward.

"Lily, take Harry and go! It's him! Go! Run! I'll hold him off!"

He could remember running toward the stairs, making it up the first two steps and then…

Nothingness. A dark black nothingness. Brief… or was it long? Never-ending?

James shook his head as he came back to reality, and it was as if his breath had once again been taken away from him as he remembered…

Lily! Harry!

He pushed himself to his feet, turned and hurried up the stairs.

"Lily!" he called out, frantically, "Can you hear me?! Harry!"

He turned to Harry's bedroom, and found a horrible sight. The door had been knocked off its hinges, now laid sprawled out, halfway in the bedroom, halfway out in the hallway. A large hole in the roof opened the room to the elements, as a cool breeze blew into the room. Across the room, the wooden crib was a pile of sticks and debris, and nearby…

James' heart sank as he saw Lily Potter sprawled out on the floor, eyes closed, hair splayed out like blood.

"Lily!" James cried out, and bounded across the room over to her, "No, no, no!"

Immediately, he kneeled next to her, his hand grasping at her closest wrist, praying…

And then she gasped and lifted her head.

"Oh, thank Merlin," James sighed, in relief.

He pushed her gently to her side, as she coughed, and gasped, trying to bring in more air. When she was finished coughing, she turned and looked at him, a smile curling her lips. James grasped her in a hug as tears sprang to his eyes.

"Wh-why is it so—cold?" Lily said, her voice and body shivering, "I'm dead, aren't I?"

"What?" James asked, "No, of course you're not dead –"

"He killed me. I jumped in front of the Killing Curse. I'm dead," Lily said.

"It is cold because there is a very large hole in the roof," James said, "Over there, above –"

Then he remembered he wasn't just looking for his wife. He let go of her and crawled frantically across the room over to the debris that was once his son's crib.

"Harry!" James said, as he threw twigs of wood around, "Harry –"

"James –"

"He's not –" James cried out, "He's not here, Lily!"

"James!" Lily growled.

James stopped and turned to his wife. She was now sitting up, looking at him.

"We'll find him, sweetheart," Lily said, in a soothing tone.

"You don't think -!" James said, "Lily, you don't think he –"

"If he did, we'll find him," Lily said.

"Lily, the prophecy," James said, "If he found Harry, you know what he'd do. Harry could be –"

"We don't know that, James," Lily said, firmly, as she crawled over to James and took his arm, "We'll find him. I have faith. We're not dead, right?"

"I-I don't think so," James said, as he looked around, "Unless this is somebody's joke of an afterlife. I know I wouldn't be in the ruins of my home if I was in the afterlife. Not even in hell –"

"You wouldn't go to hell, love," Lily said, with a small chuckle, "So if we aren't dead – and I'm pretty sure that was a Killing Curse coming at me – then I have faith Harry is alive."

"Why – why aren't you scared?" James asked, "Why aren't you – why -?"

"I was always the cool-headed one between the two of us," Lily said, "And I told you, I have faith that it will all be fine. Now, let's find our wands and figure out what is going on."

It didn't take long to find Lily's wand. It was under the fallen door, miraculously still in one piece. Lily summoned James wand, and they slowly made their way downstairs.

"Everything looks… dead," James said, as he looked in the living room, "Are you sure we're not –?"

"I think we'd know if we were dead, James," Lily said, as she walked over to one of the chairs and started searching for something.

"What are you looking for?" James asked, "We should be out looking for Harry!"

"One of our Order coins," Lily said, "Fast communication, faster than a Patronus messenger, and I'm not sure if I could summon a Patronus right now… you?"

"No, no, good idea," James said, as he walked over to the couch, "I'll search over here – why the hell were they made with Anti-Summoning Charms?"

"Death Eaters could take them from us and use them to find everyone," Lily said.

"Right," James said.

As James searched the couch, his eyes alerted him to movement in the window. He poked his fingers through the shade, and saw a couple people outside staring at the house.

"What on Earth..?" James asked.

"What?" Lily asked.

"There's people outside," James said, "Staring at the house."

"Death Eaters?" Lily asked, "Think they know we're in here. Do you recognize anyone?"

"No, I..." James said, then his eyes went toward one particular figure, who was walking away, "Wait... is that… Moony?"

"What?!" Lily asked again, and soon she, too was at the window, "Where?"

"There – his back's turned, he's walking down the street," James said.

"I see him – no, that man looks different," Lily said, "Older… maybe."

"I think I'd recognize one of my best friends anywhere, Lily!" James said, "It's him!"

He moved to head toward the front door, when Lily's arm grabbed his own.

"What?" James asked.

"Those could be Death Eaters scouting the house for Order members after the attack last night!" Lily hissed, "That could be someone under Polyjuice!"

"It could also be Remus!" James said, "He might know where Harry is! I have to –"

"James, no!" Lily growled, "Too dangerous –!"

James readied a retort to his wife, when a thought came to his mind.

"Stay here, Lily," James said, "I think I know a way to know if it really is him, without alerting those others."

Before Lily could respond, James was making his way to the back of the house.

A few minutes later, his hands shoved in his coat pockets, as another breeze blew past him, Remus Lupin made his way past the kissing gate and into the cemetery. He had not been here in many months – in fact it had been James' birthday, in late March when he had last come to pay his respects to his best friend.

I remember when I'd come out here once a month for those first few months after everything happened. Now it is just once or twice a year. About all I can handle now. Too many memories – good and bad.

To think, this could very well be the last time I come here, if…

He swallowed back those thoughts as he looked around. A few of the crowd that had been in front of the Potter's house were now in the cemetery. A couple others were nearby at the monument of James, Lily, and baby Harry, which had been put up on the first anniversary of James and Lily's deaths.

Bloody tourist trap is all it is these days. How many of these people truly knew James and Lily? Had ever spoken to them long enough to know who they were, what they cared about…? Seems like I'm the only one.

As these thoughts went through his head, his feet made their familiar journey across the small graveyard over to their destination. Aware that he was probably being watched by onlookers, but didn't want to know who was looking at him, he looked down at the smooth white marble headstone, and over the familiar wording he had now memorized, as if it was etched forever in his mind.

BORN 27 MARCH 1960


The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.

His mind went back to James and Lily's funeral. It definitely hadn't been one of the best moments of his life. The whole funeral was nothing special at all.

Damned vultures of the Daily Prophet hording over everything. It was hard to get a moment's peace. Not to mention the closed caskets Albus Dumbledore insisted on. Nobody, not even close friends – there had been no family present – James and Lily's parents were all dead, and Lily's only sister had not cared for her at all – had been able to look up on the faces one last time.

Remus shook his head as if trying to rid his mind of the memories of that day. He once again looked down at the headstone and sighed deeply.

"Well, here we are again," Remus whispered, so that only he – and perhaps James and Lily somewhere in the heavens above - could hear what he had to say, "Another Halloween day, another visit. I didn't really have a speech thought out when I came here today. There are times when I'm not even sure why I come out here anymore. Especially on this day. The day everything good in my life ceased to exist. You don't know what it is like down here anymore, Prongs. 'Oh, the wizarding world is rejoicing, He-Who-Must-Be-Named is gone, hooray.' You know what it was like for me? I'm sure I've told you this all before. That first - transformation – after you were gone – I didn't even know if I was going to survive! You, and Wormtail and –" Remus swallowed – "Padfoot – had been there for my transformations for as long as I could remember, and then suddenly… you weren't. Not anymore. I hadn't felt that lonely in years. And I hoped, hoped, that loneliness would go away, but it hasn't. I'm alone, Prongs. Every day, I feel like – like I'm five again, locked in my basement waiting out my transformation. Like I'm eleven again, in the Shrieking Shack."

I'll be damned if this doesn't sound like a bloody suicide note.

Remus laughed, humorlessly.

"You probably know exactly what this sounds like, Prongs," he said, "Or if you don't, then Lily does. I guess I don't have to tell you what I've very recently planned out, and even more recently decided, do I?"

What you must think of me right now, old friend…

"I really hope there is something up there to go home too," Remus said, "Because if not – if I can't see you after this is all over, then what is this all worth? I just want to know that – I just want – I need to hear that answer from you. If I could just see you one last time –"

Remus froze, his whole body stiff.

What was that feeling he had just sensed? Like someone he had not seen in a long while was staring straight at him from nearby?

He slowly turned his head, and almost jumped out of his shoes.

A large, majestic stag was staring at him from the other side of the kissing gate of the cemetery.

I have truly lost my mind.

Meanwhile, in Little Whinging, Surrey, a woman was humming to herself as she washed the lunchtime dishes.

Someday my prince will come
Someday I'll find my love
And how thrilling that moment will be
When the prince of my dreams comes to me

Yes, someday,
she thought, with a smile, but probably not today. How long now have I been saying that? Many a moon, that's right… and I have yet to have any dreams of any princes.

"Danger!" a little girl's voice squealed behind her, "Danger! Danger!"

Anyone else got a response like that and they'd be really worried, Gertrude "Danger" Granger thought, chuckling to herself as she turned around. Lucky, for me it is just a nickname.

A little girl of just five years old stood there in the doorway between the entrance hall of the house and the kitchen, dressed in a long black dress and a long pointy black hat.

"I'm a witch, Danger!" Hermione Granger said, producing a star-tipped plastic "wand" around.

"I can see that, Neenie," Danger chuckled, using the name her sister adored, "But what are you doing in your costume already? Trick-or-treating isn't for a few hours now."

"Oh, let her have her fun, Gertie," Rose Granger, the matron of the family said, as she walked around her youngest daughter and into the kitchen, "It isn't everyday little girls get to be witches."

Danger scowled at her mother's nickname for her. Danger is a fine nickname, Gertie is not!

"Yeah, Gertie!" Neenie said, pointing her wand at Danger.

"Oh, now you got her using that name!" Danger harrumphed, playfully glaring at her sister.

Rose chuckled. Neenie stuck out her tongue and retreated from the kitchen.

"Are you sure you want to take Neenie out trick-or-treating tonight?" Rose asked.

"Why wouldn't I, Mum?" Danger asked, "she's been looking forward to this all month. It would break her heart if -"

"I'm not saying that, dear," Rose said, "I mean – I could go with her this year. Don't you have somewhere else you could be? A Halloween party with friends or something?"

"Nope, nothing like that," Danger said, "Making magic with my little witch-sister sounds a fine idea with me. Why do you ask?"

"You're twenty-four, Gertrude," Rose said, "I thought you would have – well – somebody to go out with by now."

"You mean a boyfriend?" Danger asked,. "Mum, just because you and Daddy fell in love at a very young age, doesn't mean I have to."

"I know that, dear," Rose said, with a world-worry sigh, "I'm just worried for you."

"Don't be, Mum," Danger said, "Someday –"

"My prince will come," Danger, Rose, and a new voice said all at the same time.

"Hi, Daddy," Danger said, as her father entered the room.

"Hello, my Dangerous girl," David Granger said, "I just had to dodge one of your sister's 'hexes'."

"Bibbidy-bobbidy-boo?" Danger guessed, chuckling.

"Yep," David said, with a smile, "Your mother playing Cupid again?"

"She's trying to," Danger said, glaring at her mother, who immediately took on an innocent expression, "This family has enough love to go around as it is. I am very happy to go trick-or-treating with my sister, and let you two have a couple's night. How long has it been since you two had one without us?"

"Oh, we couldn't possibly go out somewhere," Rose said.

"You don't have to," Danger said, "I'll make dinner. Nobody says 'no' to my peanut-butter pasta, you know!"

"You are too good for us," David said, "What would we ever do without you?"

Danger smiled. "Now go on. Let me get my work done."

"Come on, Rose, dear," David said, "Let's go find our little witch and make sure she hasn't vanished."

Rose smiled and followed her husband out of the kitchen. Danger returned to her work and hummed once again.

Someday my prince will come
Someday we'll meet again
And away to his castle we'll go
To be happy forever I know
Someday when spring is here
We'll find our love anew
And the birds will sing and wedding bells will ring
Someday when my dreams come true

First chapter finished!

Next chapter, Remus gets the shock of his life,
James and Lily get the shock of their lives, and Danger and Neenie go trick-or-treating and get the shock of their lives. Also, to those of you who are wondering, Harry will show up soon, probably in a couple of chapters!And yes, the reason for James and Lily's return will be explained sometime.

To those Dangerverse fans,
some of this may be familiar to you. You will probably know that in this Verse, the Grangers lived rather close to Harry and the Dursleys. Also, how do you think I've handled Danger so far?

Also some facts from the Dangerverse are of course different in this story. As you can see, Danger's parents are alive in this chapter, and Danger does not have her magic or her dreams yet. Danger and Remus have not met… yet. All of that will change soon.Also, Hermione Granger is her age in canon, and Meghan Black will be a little older than she is in the Dangerverse saga.

More to come!

Once again, thank you to Anne B. Walsh (aka
whydoyouneedtoknow) for allowing me to use her characters!

Danger was humming and singing "Someday my prince will come" from the classic "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves".

Additional Note for my Bonds of Time readers: Check my profile page soon for updates.