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The Better Choice

Chapter Text

'Today is the day. After almost six years I get to see him again,' Parker thought to himself, managing a bit of excitement despite all the reports and emails and things he had to get done today. However, his excitement was quickly replaced with frustration at what else was happening today - or rather, what was being announced. 'Wonder if I'll get to see him before Augustine tries to kill me for the budget cuts and the Sully replacement…..'

"That would be just my luck, wouldn't it? Taken out by a scientist for shit that's not my fault…." Parker muttered to himself as he signed off on a report using his GhostPad before transferring it to his main computer with a swipe of his fingertips to be filed away later. "Well, my luck and his..."

0o0o0o0o0o0o0

When magic was exposed to the Muggle population of Earth in the year 1998 (thanks to Voldemort and his followers), things went surprisingly well all things considered. Not counting those first two weeks of wild speculation from the Muggles and the moderate panicking from the Magicals, of course.

That's not to say that Muggles just blindly accepted this knowledge and went about their days. No. There was suspicion and fear in the several months that followed as the Magical and Non-Magical leaders of the world met, hashed out laws, and signed treaties. Nearly everyone agreed that it would be best to slowly integrate in terms of knowledge and government, and that goal was fully achieved thirty years later, with the occasional hiccup along the way.

With magical assistance, muggle technology had been improving in massive bounds and leaps during those years. Due to the apathetic attitude towards anything that wasn't technological progress, no one -save a small minority- cared to notice that many mundane and magical animals and plants were becoming rare or extinct.

Then it was brought to attention that more squibs and magically-weak children were being born, and there were fewer muggleborns every year. Those discoveries combined brought on a mild panic concerning the future, slightly more so when, by 2068, eight of the eleven major wizarding schools of the world were closed due to lack of students.

The remaining three (Hogwarts, Ilvermorny, and Uagadou) had no choice but to widen their acceptance reach to include the rest of the world, as well as lower their standards on magical strength. But not even twenty years later, Hogwarts and Uagadou both sent their remaining students to Ilvermorny and then closed their doors for good. Not that the majority of the world's population was even paying attention, anyway. They were too wrapped up in their own lives; near daily news concerning this war or that, and the discovery of an Earth-like planet called Pandora.

Well, moon, technically speaking, though no one but scientists really bothered with such a "small detail". They were too entranced by the images of Pandora's beautiful, massive, flora and strange fauna. And no one was more in awe at this publicised discovery than a man by the name of Jonathan Thomas Evans, formerly known as Harrison James Potter.

For the last hundred and fifty years, Harry Potter had no choice but to watch as the world, and magic, decayed around him. As the (unwilling) Master of Death, Harry could not truly move on, and was "reborn" into his seventeen-year-old body every time he died.

But there were more pressing matters than an existential crisis at the moment, Harris thought as he slipped on an exo-pack and got ready to exit the Valkyrie shuttle along with a gaggle of soldiers. It was far too late to try and change the past; the world had been dying long before he'd been born (the first time), and not even all of the sand from all of the Time Turners could help. Not to mention, he would've been just one person against the whole of the human race.

So the only thing to do was try to live his life without revealing to anyone how much magic he actually had. Well, he wouldn't tell most people. Magic today was hardly more than parlour tricks compared to the magic from when he was born, and if the wrong people, like the government, were to find out. Well, they probably wouldn't hesitate to make him "disappear" and experiment on him to find out why he was different. No; his magic was a secret best kept to himself. And his spouse.

Harris smiled a little at that thought as he entered the base. Taking two very deep breaths, he pulled his exo-pack off and pushed his way forward, most people shocked enough to quickly step out of the way. He stopped at the front of the group, smiling pleasantly as he waited for everyone to finish filing in and the door in front of him to open. While he held his breath. And bounced on the balls of his feet. Like an excited child.

The soldier 'in charge' of them narrowed his eyes at him, jaw tightening in irritation at Harris' disregard for protocol.

Harris just continued smiling, and the soldier immediately grew angry, taking such blatant insubordination as a challenge. Deciding Harris was someone who needed to be taught a lesson in following orders. So, instead of closing the primary door and switching on the oxygen for everyone, he crossed his arms and leaned back again the wall, staring Harris down.

Catching on quite quickly, Harris put the mask back on. He didn't have time for some pissing contest with a soldier who thought his shit didn't stink because he had been given a slightly important job. He had someone he wanted to see.

The soldier, smug and satisfied with his supposed win, closed the door, flipped the switch for the O2, and opened the secondary door. As soon as the door was barely wide enough, Harris slipped through, tossing his mask into the bucket provided.

He ignored the angry call behind him, instead focusing his attention on darting through the hallways, barely stopping long enough to read the signs posted at the intersections. So long as he found his husband in time, no one could get him in trouble for ditching the "welcome to Pandora" speech everyone was supposed to sit in on.

He hadn't seen Parker in over five years (though it only felt like a few months to Harris thanks to cryo), and he would not be detoured.