Chapter 1: Harry's First Christmas
Harry looked around the house it looked very different than it normally did. There was lights all over the living room and it did not smell of the normal potions ingredients. There was a giant tree in the corner and this had ornaments on it. There were many presents under the tree. Harry wondered if Severus had other children that lived with their mother and they were coming over.
Harry started to smell breakfast. Harry wasn't used to not cooking breakfast. He had been doing that since he was five for his aunt and uncle. Harry had his chores around the house here but they were things that a child his age should be doing as Severus put it. Harry also earned money from Severus for the things he did around the house. Harry was still getting used to the money system that Severus had shown him. It was wizard money and there was no paper bills just coins.
"Happy Christmas, Harry," Severus said from the doorway where he was standing, watching Harry.
"Happy Christmas, Severus." Harry looked at the tree again after speaking.
"Do you want to eat or open presents?"
Harry turned to look back at Severus. There were presents for him?
"Presents? For me?"
"Of course, who did you think they were for?"
"I've never gotten a present before."
"Well these are all for you. How about we eat first. That way your stomach doesn't bother you while you open your gifts."
Harry nodded and followed Severus to the kitchen. There was a large amount of food sitting on the table. Harry sat down and waited for Severus to set up his plate. Harry had to eat all that was one his plate before he could get up. It was one of the house rules. Harry also got an extra sigil...sickle, that was the word, everytime he got a second plate of food and ate at least half of it.
Harry quickly ate his plate of food and found that he still had room so he asked for more. Severus smile and waved his wand. A silver sickle fell out of the top jar on the counter and fell into the bottom. It was count of how much money Harry had earned during the week. It was over half full from this past week. Harry ate all the food on his second plate and carried it to the sink. He was full. Harry heard a clink and looked over at his jar. Sitting on the top was one of the gold pieces, a Galleon. Harry looked over at Severus who was just smiling.
"You are getting better at eating. I am very proud of how you are doing. Harry you actually look like a seven year old boy should. You know that once you get up to where you should be, that this money incentive is going away."
"I know. I just really like being able to eat what I want when I want."
"Within reason. Remember when you pigged out on sweets."
"I don't want a tummy ache like that again."
Harry sat back down and waited calmly for Severus to finish eating his food. Severus always read the paper while eating so he took a little longer to eat. Harry didn't mind, he liked living with Severus. Harry was roused from his musings by the sound of Severus setting down the paper.
Severus followed Harry into the living room, he guided Harry to sit on the floor in front of the tree. Severus handed Harry a gift. Harry had seen his cousin open his gifts every Christmas, he didn't want to rip into the gifts like Dudley had done. He wanted to savor every gift he opened. He still wasn't sure that he was going to be staying with Severus.
Harry turned the book over and looked at the title. Beginner's Magic was the title and it looked new. Harry spent the next hour opening up presents and finding that Severus had gotten him all new things. There was nothing that was second hand or handed down. There were also no clothes.
"Thank you. You didn't have to do this."
"I know that I did not, I wanted to. You are now under my care and should be treated as if you were my own child. I cannot condone the actions of those who had you before except that they were narrow minded. I am sure that you thought that I would get you clothes and the like but those are things that you need. Christmas is not about giving things are needed. They are about things that are wanted."
Severus moved closer to Harry and touched his shoulder. Harry jumped into his arms and hugged him tight. Severus smiled and wrapped Harry in his arms. He knew that there was a lot of mistrust in Harry's life. It was going to take a lot of time to make Harry trust again but he was willing to try. Seeing fear in Lily's eyes was not something that Severus liked to see. It was entirely too short a time when Harry pulled back.
Harry went over to the bookshelf and pulled out from behind a set of books a small wrapped present. Harry shyly handed it to Severus. Severus's eyes got big and he immediately tore off the wrapped. Inside was a very old potions book. Severus looked at Harry with a question in his eyes.
"It was in the things of my parents that you gave me. The things you saved from their house before...Dumbleddore got to them. I know this book is a treasure because of the way that it was wrapped up."
"Yes, Harry it is a treasure for more reasons than one. There are only four copies of this book in existence. The man who wrote it over seven hundred years ago spelled the book so that there would only be four copies in existence. If one is destroyed only then can another copy be made. Second, it was a gift to your mother. I had learned what I could from the book and she loved Potions so much, I had to give it to her. It was the only real thing I ever gave anyone. It was not long after that, that we said our goodbyes. I did not even know that I had saved it. I grabbed all books of the shelves before I was found in the house. I wasn't going to let you not have something of your mother. Even if I did hate your father."
"Happy Christmas, Severus."
"Happy Christmas, Harry, you've given me more than you know."
Chapter 2: Harry Meets Draco
Harry goes to the park one day and meets someone he never thought he would. Now he just has to keep it secret from his dad. He doesn’t want to not see him again.
Harry Potter was standing at the edge of the park. His father had left him there to play while he did other things. Harry didn't want to be a way from his father. Severus thought that it would be safe for him to play. It was only going to be Muggles at the park but Harry still worried.
There were ten other children playing at the park when they had arrived. Severus had been called away back to the house and had left Harry there. Harry turned and looked at the house they were staying in. He could see Zook poking his head out the window to watch him. It wouldn't have been safe for Zook to be seen by the kids. While Muggles didn't see the magic world very well, sometimes children could see it. It was just better if Zook stayed in the house.
Harry saw a better park across the street. It had older kids, more his age, at it. He looked at the house and saw that Zook was not watching. He decided to brave it. He wouldn't be caught. He was safe. It was a Muggle park. There was nowhere safer, save the house. Harry crossed the road and entered the park. He was looking around when a voice interrupted him.
"Want to play with me?" a small voice asked. Harry turned to look farther into the new playground. There was a small blond haired boy standing in front of him. He was a new kid, Harry had never seen him before.
"Sure, my name is Harry James." Harry didn't feel bad lying. He had learned that sometimes lies were necessary to protect one's self. Severus had taught him that.
"Draco Malfoy. I've never seen you here before. Father brings me here all the time while he is in meetings."
"It's my first time here at this park. I've only been to the other park a few times."
Harry blinked at the comment. This was a Wizard. This was a Wizard park. Harry smiled as he touched his forehead. The scar was covered up for the day. It was just kids here so no one should recognize him.
"You'll love it here. Come on!" Draco grabbed his arm and pulled him over to what looked like a sandbox. Harry had never really got to play in one before. The moment that he touched the sand, it morphed into a very elaborate castle. Harry jumped back in surprise. "It creates things based on what you are thinking at that moment. That's a nice castle. We can even act out stories in here."
Draco touched the sand and a giant dragon appeared. Harry touched the sand again and little soldiers appeared around and inside his castle. The dragon and soldiers started doing battle, with the dragon breathing sand fire and killing some of the soldiers.
They played for over an hour and Draco was the winner with all of Harry's soldiers being killed and the princess taken from the castle and carried back to the dragon's lair.
Harry looked at the watch on his wrist and exclaimed. "Sorry Draco, I've got to go back to the Muggle Park. My father is very protective of me and wants me to stay in the Muggle Park."
"Sure, will you come back?"
"The next day that I can, I will."
"Bye!" Draco waved as Harry ran back across the park. Harry waved back as he reached the edge of the park. Harry sat down on a bench just as his father was leaving the house. Harry ran over and waited for his father to hug him. He was using the face of one of the men from the surrounding villages of where they really lived. Harry knew his though because it was the face he almost always used.
"Did you have fun?" Severus asked.
"Yes. I played with some of the others kids."
"Zook looked out but you must have been on the slide. He was busy with other things. I told him you were safe and sound and just having fun playing."
"Of course I was safe." Harry didn't like lying but he wasn't hurting anyone or anything.
It had been three months and Harry and Draco had become good friends. Harry had still not told him his biggest secret but it was the secret that could get him killed. He trusted Draco but there were others who would do whatever they could go get him and hurting Draco would be small to them.
Harry arrived in the park and saw that Draco was not there yet. Harry set himself down by the sand box. It was their favorite place to play. Harry was very good at doing very intricate designs in the sand and Draco loved watching him do them.
Draco told him that he was very powerful for a Muggle-born. Harry never told him that he was a half-blood. He hated the lie but it was better to have him believe that. Too many questions would come up if Draco knew much more about his life.
He had his back turned to the park entrance. He never saw Severus striding into the park. He wasn't in his normal disguise. This time it was another face he wore. A face that hadn't been seen alive in a few years. Harry didn't know the face and would never connect that it was his father. Regulus Black's face was being seen for the first time in many years.
"Harry James, what do you think you are doing?" Severus demanded when he got closer to Harry.
Harry spun around and fell off the side of the sandbox. He looked up at the face that was staring at him. He didn't know the face but he did know the look on it. He had been caught. Harry scrambled to his feet and started to talk but Severus grabbed him by his shirt collar and started to pull him away.
"You should never have set foot in the park."
"I'm sorry. It looked so much fun. I've never noticed it before. I'm sorry. I just thought it was another part of this park."
"We have to leave and never come back."
"That's a Wizard park, Harry. You aren't safe there."
"I didn't know. I'm sorry."
"I'm just glad that we have trained extensively in Occlumency. Did anyone talk to you while you were there today?"
"No," Harry replied, happy that he didn't have to lie about that at least. They were nearing the house. Harry thought for a second that they were going to go inside but instead they turned the corner and Severus pulled him close. Harry knew they were going to Apparate. He was never going to see Draco again.
Draco arrived at the park a little later then what he normally would have. He entered just as he saw a man pulling Harry off. Draco ran at his full speed but the mans quickness and lead were no match for him. Draco wished in that instant that he knew more magic. Harry was being taken. Draco finally got close enough that he heard what was being said.
"That's a Wizard park, Harry. You aren't safe there."
"I didn't know. I'm sorry."
"I'm just glad that we have trained extensively in Occlumency. Did anyone talk to you while you were there today?"
Draco stopped in his tracks. It was Harry's father and his father was mad at him. Draco knew from their talks that Harry didn't fear his dad but that his dad was very protective. There was no mention of a mother. Draco had been wondering for a while if his mother had been magical and his father a Muggle. That would explain how he would know about magic but with what his father said about Occlumency, that theory was blown. His father was a magic user.
"He is probably an Unspeakable. That's why he so crazy about protecting him."
Draco walked back to where his father was. He didn't feel like playing. His father didn't ask any questions. Just left Draco sit and read while he worked for the day. That afternoon they went to Diagon Alley and Draco was allowed to pick up a few more books.
"Harry Potter should have been sorted this year," Pansy Parkinson said as she watched the last person being sorted.
"Who cares?" Draco asked as he took a sip of his drink on the table. He didn't care about Harry Potter. His friend Harry James was not at Hogwarts. His father must have put him somewhere else. The doors banging open startled nearly everyone. Draco looked over at that doors and saw a black haired boy enter with his head held high. He dropped his cup. It was Harry. It was his friend Harry! Draco nearly jumped up and waved at him but the words being said in the hall and the scar on Harry's forehead stopped him. It was Harry Potter. He had made friends with Harry Potter.
Draco used his wand to clean up his pumpkin juice and watched Harry as he was sorted. His heart fell when he heard 'Gryffindor' being called out for him.
They couldn't be friends. It wouldn't be allowed. Slytherins and Gryffindors couldn't be friends.
Chapter 3: Harry Gets His Wand
I meant to post this on Christmas Day but I got way too busy. Yesterday was even worse. So here it is. There will be another posted on Friday and then next Friday will be the start of Book Five.
Harry sat up in his bed and smiled. Today was the day. He would be considered a true wizard after today. He was getting his wand. He jumped out of bed and started to get dressed in a pair of jeans and a plain dark green t-shirt. It was the Muggle clothes his father said he had to wear when they went out into the world. He was posing as a Muggle father who's Witch wife died and he was left to raise their son who was a Wizard.
"Harry!" Severus yelled from the downstairs. Harry rushed into the bathroom to brush his teeth and hair. He quickly washed his mouth out with water and ran his brush through his hair and practically ran down the steps. Severus was waiting for him at the back door. He was dressed and ready to leave. "I thought we might eat out this morning."
Harry smiled and nodded before he moved towards the door. He quickly squeezed past his father and went to the garden. Lunar was laying and sunning himself. Harry petted him on his head.
"I'm getting my wand today!" Harry went to his knees and hugged his pseudo pet. Lunar licked him on his cheek and then laid his head back down. Harry kissed him on his head and then stood up. Severus was standing and watching him.
"Let's go!" Severus said as he motioned for Harry to go in front of him. Harry ran to the Apparition point. Severus walked at a much calmer pace. When he got there he opened his arms and Harry stepped into them. It was a few seconds later that Harry felt the pull and then they were gone. Harry closed his eyes. He really didn't like Side-Along-Apparition but he was getting more and more used to it.
They arrived in an alley in the Muggle part of London. Harry let go of Severus and stepped back. He straightened his glasses and looked at his father.
"Ready?" Severus asked. Harry nodded back at him and then started forward. Severus caught up easily and put his hand on Harry's shoulder as they walked to the diner across the road. They ordered and ate quickly. Harry was too excited to really eat too much. His stomach had butterflies in them.
It seemed like forever to Harry, when they finally left the diner and made their way to The Leaky Cauldron. Severus's disguise of the day was set in place and he had already taken another sip of his Polyjuice Potion so that it wouldn't slip. Harry had been inside of Diagon Alley only a few times and each time he had been under the Disillusionment Charm. This was his first time that he could do what he wanted. He knew that he had to act surprised by it all, that was part of the cover.
"Are you Tom?" Severus asked the man at the bar, who turned to stare at Severus's and Harry.
"I am Steve James and this is my son Harry. I was told that you would let us into Diagon Alley so that we can get a wand for Harry today."
Harry waved at Tom while smiling bright. He was bouncing on his heels. It didn't take much to act like a Muggle. He was too excited to not calm down.
"Yea. Go on over. I will be over in a minute."
Harry practically pulled Severus over by his hand. Severus smiled at Harry's antics. It was only a few minutes later that Tom opened the gateway and they were inside of Diagon Alley. They were only shopping for the wand, robes, and books. Severus had already acquired everything else that was going to be needed for the school year. Severus didn't want them being there too long. If they were there too long they ran too many chances of something going wrong.
"I have your money on me so we don't need to go to Gringott's. Let's go to Madame Malkin's first."
They were inside of Malkin's for only twenty minutes. They would pick the robes up once they were done with the rest of their shopping. Flourish and Blott's was next and Harry spent a long time in there. They walked out with the school books and ten pleasure books for Harry, along with a book for Severus about raising a Wizarding child in the Muggle World. Just for appearance sake.
Finally, Harry entered Ollivanders. They were the only ones in there and Harry marched right up to the desk to try and gain someone's attention.
"Would you like me to close the shop, Professor?" a voice asked from behind them. Harry and Severus spun around and found Ollivander's standing at the door. The window's were already darkened so that no one could see inside. His hand was on the door, readying the lock. Severus pulled his wand from someone where up his sleeve. "Put away your wand, Professor. If I had wanted to cause you harm I could have already. I was wondering if I would see you sometime Mr. Potter."
"And how do you know who we are?" Harry asked. He could feel his magic surrounding him and it was ready to act.
"I know magic. I am a wand maker it is my duty to know magic. I know that wand there in the Professor's hand. It sang to me when we entered and you Mr. Potter. I would know your magic anywhere."
"I see," Severus stated dryly but he never put his wand up.
Ollivander didn't seem surprised by Severus. Instead he went about gathering up boxes and boxes of wands. Harry tried each of them out and found that they didn't work for him.
"I wonder," he said as he reached under his counter. "I have been saving this. When I found out that Mr. Potter was supposedly dead I put this wand up. The phoenix who gave up his feather for this wand gave up another feather. I created two wands out of them and the other was taken many years ago."
Ollivander handed Harry a wand, when it touched Harry's hand a wind storm picked up and red and yellow sparks shot out of the end of it. Harry looked over at Severus with a smile on his face. Severus was not smiling. Harry looked back at Ollivander.
"Who does the other wand belong to?"
"Right now it belongs to no one. It was last used by the man who gave you that scar."
"And are you going to be letting the man who owns Fawkes know that the other wand was taken?"
"I will let him know that it was taken but not by who. I would love to be there when Mr. Potter shows up at Hogwarts."
"Yes, I only wish I could capture it on film." Severus laughed.
"Who does Fawkes belong to, Father?" Harry asked.
"The Headmaster, Harry."
Harry nodded and looked back at Ollivander, who had a stunned expression on his face.
"How did Mr. Potter come to live?"
"I saved him that night."
"I see. I expect great things from you, Mr. Potter. He Who Must Not Be Named did great things, terrible but they were great."
"Yes, I expect the world wants me to do great things. I just don't think they will like some of those great things that I do."
As Harry and Severus turned to leave, they could hear Ollivander laughing lowly from behind the counter. Harry wasn't sure if he should be scared or not.
Chapter 4: Harry's First Birthday
Harry is worried about celebrating his first birthday with Severus.
Harry woke up feeling groggy. He hadn't slept well the night before. He had been worried about how big of a deal he should make of his birthday. Severus had not mentioned it at all and Harry didn't know if he just didn't remember. Harry stayed in his room as long as he could. He didn't want to face another time where his birth didn't matter. Severus had never mentioned his own birthday much less celebrating Harry's.
Harry spent an hour cleaning his room before he noticed he hadn't been called down to breakfast. Harry decided to venture out and find out where Severus was. When he got to the kitchen, only Zook was there. Harry's jaw dropped. There was a wonderful breakfast about on the table. It was more than Harry would be able to eat.
Severus believed in only preparing what was going to be eaten. Harry never went hungry and if for some reason what the House Elves cooked wasn't enough, Harry would have to eat fruit to finish off a meal. He didn't mind. It had taken a while but Harry was starting to grow again. Severus had told him just the week before that he was getting to the right size for a child his age.
"Zook, why is there so much food?"
"Master Severus left early to go find some supplies for his coming school year. He said his Sixth and Seventh years students will be working on a few odd potions and the ingredients need his 'personal' touch. I decided that you needed a good meal for breakfast. What is left over, I can put a preservation charm on and you can snack on them all day."
"Thank you, Zook. I guess this means that Father won't be back till tonight?"
"Master did not say when he would be back. He did say that I could take you into the woods."
"That'd be great!" Harry said as he sat down and started to pile his plate with food. Harry ate all the hot food first. The eggs, bacon, sausage, and pancakes were gone in minutes. He ate a few of the muffins and a little of the fruit. He ate more than he normally would. He was going to spend as much time as he could in the woods. The muffins and fruit would be able to be kept and taken with him in a pack and eaten while in the woods.
After he was completely done eating, Harry ran up the stairs and packed a backpack. When he got back downstairs, Zook was ready with a small pouch of jerky for snacking. He was putting it into a larger bag with the rest of the breakfast foods. Harry took the bag from Zook and placed it in his backpack. Harry grabbed a hat from the pegs by the door.
"I'm ready!" Harry said, opening the door and moved out it. Zook followed behind, staying quiet. Harry wasn't allowed out into the woods much and when he did go out Severus and Zook let him be. Harry was good at figuring out plants and such. Harry would collect many plants and other forest debris for potions ingredients. He would spend tomorrow playing with potions and trying to modify certain potions. Harry had gotten pretty good potions in the almost year that Harry had been with Severus.
Harry wandered the woods looking at everything that he could. He went a way that he had never gone before. Zook followed watching for anything that could harm him. Harry kept an ear out for animals but he didn't listen for any other sounds. On the way into the woods Harry just looked. He didn't gather anything just looked at everything. Several hours later, they stopped to eat a quick lunch. Zook talked about the local bird life and how it was different from the bird life around the house. Harry let him just chatter while they ate.
They started out again and Zook went back to being quiet. Harry started to notice that the trees were thinning out. He knew that the town was in the other direction. He had no idea why the woods would thin out. He stopped and turned to look at Zook.
"Stay here. Don't make a sound."
Harry crept closer, all the while listening for any sounds. As the trees became less and less, Harry moved slower and slower. Finally, he could spot the end of the trees. When he made it to the treeline, there was on tree that was big enough for him to hide behind. It was a small clearing. There was nothing in it, just grass and flowers. Harry didn't move. He just listened for a few minutes. That's when he heard it. Voices in the clearing that had no body. They had to be Wizards.
"Will he like it, Master?"
"I am sure."
"Master Severus wants us to do this good."
"I am aware, Dobby. We are almost done. We must leave before Mr. Potter arrives."
Harry gasped slightly as he took in that bit of information. He didn't know what to make of it. Was Severus taking back all that he had said before? Was he being given to someone else? Was Severus fed up with taking care of him. Harry started to back away and then just took off running in a blind direction. He stopped only when he was out of breath and that was a while. Harry knew that he had been getting better at the physical stuff since coming to stay with Severus. He could run longer, harder, and faster.
When Harry was out of breath and couldn't draw in another breath, he stopped. He leaned against a tree while he caught his breath. He didn't know what he was going to do. He knew that Severus would tire of him but he didn't think it would be this quickly. He didn't know what he was going to do, he knew that he was in Wales but not specific location. He was sure that if he made it to a larger town, he would be able to find enough to eat. Severus would probably look for him, if for no other reason than to give him over to that man who he had heard in the clearing.
Harry looked around and saw that he was in the thick of the woods. He was sure that he had left some kind of trail. He started moving at a slower pace and picked his way through the woods and tried to leave as little of a trail of possible. Once he was sure he was good, Harry decided to climb a tree. He could get high in the tree to hide. It would afford him distance from everything but still be safe.
He got almost to the top of the tree and started to pull some of the branches around him. He settle his pack in a crook of the tree and settled himself in a larger crook. The tree itself was over one hundred years old, he could tell by the size and the bark. He wanted to think.
He knew that Severus liked him. He shouldn't fear being harmed. Severus was not his uncle. Severus though, had never wanted to be father. He never wanted to be burdened with children and to take control over another human life. Maybe Harry was becoming too much of a burden. Harry started to think about what he could do to minimize his draw on Severus's time and energy.
A crashing sound alerted Harry to the fact that someone was nearing him. Harry pulled a few more branches around him so that he was sure that no one could see him.
"I am sorry, Master Severus. He heard something in the clearing and then just took off. Before I could even try and go after him he was out of sight."
"It is fine, Zook. He is feeling alone. I had hoped that making a big deal of his birthday would make up for him thinking for a few hours that I forgot. I was wrong and the blame lays at my feet. The others had finished their things and left. Harry and I have much talking to do, once we find him."
Harry listened as Severus stopped and Harry decided to try and look down at the them. Severus was actually closer than Zook was. Harry stayed still in his tree.
"There are still no tracks. Harry must have found that he was leaving too many. He slowed down and started to move carefully. I should not have been training him so well."
"He is good. Master Harry is a good boy. He is scared. He runs from you because he is scared of what feelings you bring out in him."
"I know. Zook, you need to head back. I think that I need to find Harry on my own."
Harry heard the pop of Zook leaving.
"Harry I am sure that you are somewhere around here. Those two were friends of mine that were prepping a surprise for you. I was going to have Zook bring you to the clearing later and we were going to have a small party for you. The man and the House Elf were going to leave. I was getting your present and getting it set up at the house when you took off."
Harry watched Severus's body language. He was scared. Harry picked his pack up and released the branches. The rustling made Severus look up.
"How did you did all the way up there?"
"I climbed. It was easy."
"How about I help you down?" Severus asked. Harry nodded his consent and waited for the feel of magic to over take him. He felt it and loved the way magic felt. In just a few seconds, Harry's feet were touching the ground. Severus crouched down to look Harry in the eye. "You have to quit running. I can't help you if you do."
"I know, Severus. I just heard the talking and thought you were laying a trap of some kind for me. That you were going to give me away."
"Harry, we have talked about this. I would never give you away. You would never be safe. I know that you have read over those books. Voldemort's minions would find you and kill you given the chance. You are safer with me than anywhere else."
"I know that but..."
"Harry, I love you. I know that I am a hard man but never doubt that I love you."
"That's the first time you have said that." Harry looked Severus in the eyes for several minutes before he let himself crumple into Severus's body. Severus pulled him close.
"I'm sorry. I should have..." Severus stopped and pushed Harry away so that he could look him in the eye. "I know that I should have told you before now. I knew that given...Harry I do love you. I love you like I have never loved anyone else in my life. I would never leave you or get rid of you."
"That's the best present I could get."
"Happy Birthday, Son."