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Harry James Potter groaned as rolled over in bed. He'd been woken up by a loud pounding and an insistent shrieking outside his door. It was a reminder that today was Harry's first day of summer. Most teenagers loved summer the chance to sleep in and a break from schoolwork. But not Harry. For Harry summer meant an endless list of chores, meager meals and the loving company of his relatives, the dear sweet Dursleys.
Not wanting to but having no choice Harry rolled out of bed and fumbled with his glasses before opening his eyes. However something strange happened when he opened his eyes. His surroundings were incredibly blurry. Frowning he pulled off his glasses to clean them. They must have gotten smudged or something when Dudley pushed him into the bushes in front of the house when they got back yesterday. Once his glasses were off he realized he could see perfectly. His jaw hanging open in shock Harry quickly lifted his head to look around the room in awe of being able to see so clearly without his glasses. Then just like that everything was blurry again and he had to put his glasses on once more. Confused and worried that maybe he was going a bit mad he shrugged it off and trudged downstairs to start breakfast.
The incident was soon forgotten until he woke up several days later in the middle of the night to extreme cramps. His whole body was tingling and tensing. It felt like he was being stretched and it was painful. There was nothing he could do about though and so he simply tried to relax and get back to sleep. He brought it up with his aunt the next day and she hardly spared him a glance before saying he probably just hit a growth spurt. Harry did notice that he was a few inches taller. He'd always been average in a height, maybe a little on the short side, but average nonetheless and gaining a few inches was exciting to him. However he wasn't quite sure that you were supposed to grow several inches in just one night.
He decided to send a letter to Sirius just mentioning it. Who knows maybe puberty was more severe and happened more quickly for wizards than muggles. Harry smiled to think that he had someone, an adult someone that he could confide in and ask questions to. Sure he'd only met Sirius this past year and for most of that year he'd thought he was a crazed murderer but he was the closest thing Harry had to a parent and who actually wanted the role.
As Harry waited for Sirius's response he noticed other changes about himself. His hair wasn't quite as messy as it was before. In fact it was such a small change that he wasn't sure if it actually was real or if he was just making things up and he was making more out of these physically changes than there are actually were. When Sirius's letter finally arrived it said something along those same lines. He assured Harry that everything was fine and it was a natural part of growing up. Harry had to agree and tried to calm down. Being cooped at the Dursleys was making him crazy. For once was just a normal boy going through normal changes. He sent Sirius a thank you letter and a request for some stories about his dad as teenager.
His feelings of peace all changed when a week later Harry was working in the yard and everything suddenly went blurry. He took off his glasses and everything was once again in perfect clarity. Feeling extremely strange Harry rubbed at his eyes and blinked a few times to see if it would go away. It didn't. He stood there not knowing what to do. Harry wasn't quite as smart as Hermione or had as much experience in the wizarding world as Ron but even Harry knew that going from being as blind as a bat to seeing in perfect detail wasn't a normal part of growing up, even for wizards.
"Boy what do you think you're doing just standing about?" Aunt Petunia demanded.
Harry turned to look at her still at lost for words as to what was going on.
"What have you done to your eyes!?" She shrieked, her voice shriller than normal.
"What? What's wrong with them?" Harry gasped his hands immediately going to his face. He looked around for a reflective surface he could look into. What could possibly be happening to his eyes?
"We told you, you couldn't use any of that freakishness here!" She shouted.
"I didn't do anything. I swear. Aunt Petunia what's wrong with my eyes?" Harry begged feeling his panic rising.
For once his Aunt seemed to take pity on him or else even her prejudiced mind was able to realize that her nephew was truly terrified about what was going on.
"Your eyes are gray," she said.
"Gray?" Harry said feeling off.
"Yes, well send a letter off to those other freaks then. I'm sure they'll know what's wrong with you. I won't have whatever freakish thing that's wrong with you affecting my Duddykins," she said dismissively, seeming to have reached her kindness level towards Harry for the day.
Harry raced to do just that before realizing that Hedwig was still off delivering his most recent letter to Sirius. He didn't know how else to contact anyone. He tried not to panic. It couldn't be anything too serious it wasn't even harmful. It was actually sort of a good thing being able to see without his glasses. He walked to the bathroom and looked into the mirror. Harry stared into his newly acquired light gray eyes not really knowing how to feel about them. Was this permanent or would they be able to change them back into the vibrant green of his mum's? Everyone always said he had his mother's eyes and he didn't want to lose that.
Shaking it off he informed his aunt that because Hedwig was gone the call would have to wait and then went back to the yard work. It was an hour or so later that his body was hit by a wave of painful tremors. They sent him to his knees and through a blur of pain he managed to get back into the house. With his last bit of strength he called to his aunt hoping that she'd think of something or at least be able to put him out of his misery before he collapsed into blissful nothingness.
When he woke again it was to the all too familiar smell of the hospital wing at Hogwarts, however when he opened his eyes he found himself in an unfamiliar hospital room. He looked around and noted the moving portraits on the walls and figured this must be the wizarding hospital he'd heard about, St. Mungo’s. He couldn't remember how he'd gotten here but he was feeling somewhat more relaxed knowing he was now in the wizarding world and that they would most likely be able to take care of anything that was wrong with him.
He was just forcing his achy limbs into an upright position when a brown haired gentleman in his forties with kind brown eyes entered the room. He wore green robes and exuded a calm professional demeanor that immediately put Harry at ease. Besides he wouldn't be smiling if something truly bad had happened to Harry.
"Hello Harry, I'm Healer Baybridge. You are in St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries and I've been put in charge of your care," he informed sitting himself down in a chair besides Harry's bed.
"Okay," Harry said shakily. "What happened?"
"After you fainted your aunt took you to a muggle hospital. St. Mungo's has fail safes in place in regards to muggleborn children. If they happen to enter a muggle hospital with an injury St. Mungo's is immediately notified and someone is sent out to collect them in case that child has an ailment that needs magical intervention which muggle doctors are unable to provide. So when your aunt brought you in we were notified here and went to collect you. You've been asleep for about two hours now," he explained calmly.
"So what's wrong with me?” Harry asked hesitantly.
"Nothing is wrong with you per say. Your case is actually rather unique. One we've never actually dealt with before. But to make the long story short your body is simply reverting to its natural state," the Healer elaborated carefully.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Do you know anything about adoption rituals Harry?" Healer Baybridge asked.
"No," replied Harry.
"Well you see adoption rituals and potions have been around for quite some time in our world. Almost all of them are now illegal because of the purposes they served back in the old days and the type of magic they involve. When a witch or wizard was unable to have children they would steal a muggleborn child and use a blood adoption potion to save face and keep everyone from knowing they were infertile. The potion when mixed with the blood of the two adoptive parents would alter the child to appear as if they were the child of the adoptive parents. The potion would start to wear off after about thirteen years from when it was first taken unless the potion was administered a second time, just before the effects wore off, then the changes would remain permanent. If not then the potions effects would wear off and the child would slowly revert to his or her natural state."
The blood in Harry's ears was roaring. He knew where this was leading but he was frozen unable to do anything but sit and listen as Healer Baybridge crushed the fragile reality of Harry's life.
"Now as you've probably guessed I'm telling you this information because you were under the effects of a blood adoption potion. I believe it has lasted a little longer because you were given it when you were about a year old. We've looked over your birth records because as you can imagine we were quite shocked to discover that you were under a blood adoption potion and many are unable to believe that you aren't the child of Lily and James Potter," he paused a moment to let that thought sink in a bit before he continued.
"But on further investigation it seems that there in fact was a Harry James Potter who was born in the year of 1980 in this very hospital. It would mean that at some time before the child was a year old must’ve passed away. Somehow the Potters abducted you and replaced their son with you. It was all done in secret so of course no one ever suspected anything differently which led to problems because no one knew that you weren’t meant to be with them. Since you were stolen you still legally belong to your biological parents. We here at the hospital were required under law to perform a Paternis charm to reveal who your biological parents were so that they may be notified and so you could be placed within their care," here the Healer paused again looking at Harry as if trying to gauge if he was ready for the next bit of information.
Harry's mind was in a whirlwind. James and Lily Potter weren't his parents? They’d stolen him when he was a baby. Did anyone else know about this? How could they have lied to him? The Dursleys weren't really his relatives. His real parents might still be alive. What happened to his biological parents? Merlin he had been kidnapped! He couldn’t believe that James and Lily would do that to him and whoever his family was. Did Sirius know about this? All of those thoughts and so many more were just bouncing around inside his head with no clear organization or way to stop them.
"Who are they? Who are my parents?" Harry croaked.
Healer Baybridge took a deep breath what he said next wasn't going to be easy for the poor boy to hear. This whole situation must be difficult for his young patient since he had already given him devastating news.
"Now are you aware that men are able to bear children?” The Healer asked knowing that would lead up into the identities of his biological parents.
Harry shook his head not even knowing that that was even possible. Healer Baybridge gave a quick overview of male pregnancies which the young boy felt his head was going to explode with all the revelations that he was being informed about. .
“This might be hard for you to hear but you’re bearer’s name is Rabastan Lestrange. I’m sorry to say that he is currently serving a lifetime sentence in Askaban due to crimes in the war with You-Know-Who.”
Harry was frozen with shock. Merlin one of his parents was in prison! This Rabastan person was probably a Death Eater even if he had never heard the name before. A small part of him would have liked to speak to Rabastan if only to know why he did the things he did. For the most part he was in too much shock to fully react to this bit of news.
"Your father is currently in the process of obtaining custody of you,” the Healer said.
Harry sat up straighter needing to hear who exactly his father was but at the same time worrying just who could’ve been his other parent.
"Your father's name is Regulus Black," said Healer Baybridge.
Harry gaped at him, not caring that his jaw was hanging on the floor or that he probably resembled a codfish. Regulus Black? Was he related to Sirius? Harry didn’t really like not knowing who this person who apparently was his father. It made him uneasy knowing that he might be going to live with this stranger especially a person who associated with someone that was locked away.
After this revelation another Healer bustled into the room holding some vials of potions and some scrolls. They had a brief chat in which they used a silencing spell around them so Harry couldn't eavesdrop before the other Healer departed. Healer Baybridge looked over the scrolls and nodded before turning to look back at Harry.
"Well it seems that your father has been granted custody of you and we can now move along with your treatment. As I mentioned earlier because the blood adoption potion was delivered to you when you were older it has caused more adverse effects. You will continue to be plagued by random bouts of severe pain and discomfort as your body shifts back into its natural form. We will be giving you the antidote to the potion to get rid of the blood adoption one.”
Harry felt like the walls were closing in on him and wishing that there was someone else here to help him figure all of this out.
"It will be a shocking change of course but it is something that must be done unless you want to suffer for the foreseeable future as your body reverts to its natural state," Healer Baybridge said firmly.
"So I'll look completely different? Will there be any other changes?" Harry asked hesitantly.
"Your magic will be different. For example a subject you were once good at may now be a struggle for you or vice versus. It won't change your personality or your memories. You'll still be you just closer to the you, you should have been to begin with," he explained neutrally.
Harry looked at the vials in his hand. He couldn't see any way out of this. He was already changing and there was no going back. He might as well just do it quickly, like a band aid just yank it off quickly and be done with it. As for being in the custody of this Regulus Black person, there wasn't much he could do about it since he was a minor and not taking the potion wasn't going to stop his biological father from taking him.
And if Harry was being honest with himself he was curious as to what he really looked like. What would it be like to not look in the mirror and see his wild black hair, green eyes and spectacles? What would it be like not to have knobby knees or be one of the shorter boys in his class? Would he be better at magic? Harry wanted to know. It also helped that he didn’t want to look like the people who thought it was okay to take him away from his family.
"Alright," he murmured before he could lose his nerve.
"Here first take this. It's a numbing potion to keep you from feeling the pain from the rapid changes. Then this one. It's a high quality nutrient potion to make sure your body has the correct amount of weight and nutrients for your new body's size and weight. After all you look like you'll be a bit taller and we don't want you getting too thin or cause your bones to become brittle. Finally the blood adoption antidote," Healer Baybridge explained as he handed the vials of potions to Harry one by one.
Harry gulped each one down quickly only hesitating for a moment on the last one before it too was swallowed. Healer Baybridge helped him relax back against the bed as the tingling started. Harry could feel the shifting of his body and though the sensation was off putting it wasn't as unpleasant as the jarring pain of before. It swept out through every part of his body and he swore he could even feel his hair tingling. He could feel his bones lengthening and skin stretching and tried to keep himself from panicking as even his magic was rearranging itself inside him. He wondered vaguely if he would need a new wand after this.
Finally it was over. It had felt like an eternity had passed but Healer Baybridge calmly informed him that it been more like five minutes. He made Harry lie still on the bed for another five minutes to allow himself to settle down and make sure that the changes were complete. Harry felt strange. Even the way his tongue moved in his mouth and the feel of his teeth against it was different than he was used to. When he'd spoken his voice was different, smoother and not at all like he'd sounded before.
He looked over his hands which were bigger, the palms broader and somehow more aristocratic looking with more elegantly shaped fingers. His skin had a slightly tan look that almost looked like that he had been in the sun for a while.
Healer Baybridge finally relented to letting him see himself and helped him into the bathroom. Harry wasn't really feeling any sort of negative after affects, in fact he felt better than he could ever remember feeling, but with his new greater height and larger feet he would have taken several headers into the floor if Healer Baybridge hadn't caught him.
When they got to the mirror Harry could only stare unable to believe that the boy looking back at him was actually him. Harry couldn't deny there was rightness to this new look, this new body. It was as if he'd been wearing his tie too tight for so long that he'd stopped noticing until he'd finally removed it and felt the relief of no longer being so constricted.
He had a strong square jaw with sharp aristocratic cheekbones. His hair was somehow an even deeper black than before and fell silky straight against his scalp. His lips were fuller than he was used to which he wasn't sure he liked. He had elegantly arched thick black brows over his eyes which were a stormy gray color much like Sirius’ so he could safely assume he had gotten them from Regulus. Harry figured that they must be brothers or at the very least cousins. It was sort of thrilling to be related to Sirius even if he was only an Uncle or a second cousin. Well it would be exciting if Sirius hadn’t known about the kidnapping. Harry didn’t think he could forgive his Godfather if he was a part of what they did.
Harry felt a sudden pang that he would never get the chance to know Rabastan even if he was a Death Eater. He couldn’t imagine what his parents had gone through when he was taken from them. Even though James and Lily sacrificed themselves for him, he would never forgive them for what they did. It was wrong and his heart hurt for everything his real family went through.
But all in all Harry had to admit he was much more handsome now. He'd never really been vain before but now even he had to admit he was quite good looking. He was also taller with a wider frame, which would probably only continue to grow since he was only a few months shy of his fourteenth birthday. Really the only way someone would ever be able to know that he was Harry Potter was the lightning bolt shape scar on his brow. Harry was disappointed to find it was still there but Healer Baybridge said that it was a curse scar and nothing would be able to get rid of it.
Healer Baybridge had had to leave shortly after that and made sure Harry was settled in with some lunch before heading off. Harry sat eating his lunch his mind going over and over the things that had happened in just a few hours. What would this mean for him? Baybridge had said that Regulus had custody of him and he could only hope that he would be better than the Dursleys. It was frightening this situation because at least he knew what to expect from the Dursleys he had no idea what Regulus was like.
Regulus Black stood in front of the door leading to the hospital room his son was currently in. His chest felt like it was being squeezed painfully as he the thought of the child he long thought dead was actually alive and had been taken from him. He closed his eyes remembering the baby that had stolen both his heart and his husband's. Holding Serpens for the first time had been frightening, but at the same time the most precious moment of his life. The little being was a part of him and probably the best thing he had ever done in his life.
It had been pure agony when he found out he died when Lestrange Manor had been attacked by the Order. They had an elf watching over him when they had been remodeling Black Manor and both were said to be killed. So it was a surprise this morning when he received an urgent letter from St. Mungo's about Serpens Pollux Black being found after all this time. It was even more shocking to find out his son had been Harry Potter. The thought that those blood traitor Potters took his son filled him with a rage he hadn't felt since not being able to help his husband getting out of Azkaban.
Regulus had a lonely existence after the war not only did he lose his only child but the love of his life. Of course, his parents and the rest of his family was there to help him but nothing could heal the scars left from losing the only people who mattered in his life. He had escaped prison by never shouting out his loyalties to the Dark Lord during the war and wiggling out of it by throwing money around till he was announced innocent.
After receiving the news on Serpens he immediately set about regaining custody of him even though he really had never lost it because the Potters never formally adopted him. But the Ministry wanted him to go through the appropriate channels before being able to take Serpens home. He was still listed as his parent and that was why Dumbledore had never been able to become his magical guardian. It was also the reason that the Headmaster hadn't been notified of Harry Potter not being his little weapon anymore since he was not in any way in charge of his son.
He sighed heavily. There would be so much to discuss with Serpens, and there was no doubt he had been filled with all the Light prejudice. That was something to think on later, but right now his son was waiting for him. It would be the first time he had seen him since he was a baby.
Regulus pushed open the door ready to see his only child. If only Rabastan was here, he thought before clearing all thoughts of his husband from his mind.
Chapter 2: Chapter 2
By Polaris Aries Black
Rise of the Black Heir
Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter.
********PLEASE READ: I have added to the first chapter so go back and read so you are not confused if you have already read the first chapter prior to today 10/29.
Harry pushed around the hospital food on his plate with his fork. He wasn't all that hungry, because he had too much on his mind. He was brooding he knew but he couldn't help it. What normal person wouldn't indulge in a good brooding session after learning all he did today? It was shocking and not all that pleasant to find out his parents were not the war heroes he had always idolized but actually Death Eaters. They were on the other side of the war. The Dark side. Harry could admit he didn't really know what the true motives that Voldemort and the Death Eaters were fighting for.
So he would try to reserve judgement on his biological parents although he was cautiously curious to find out what Rabastan had been imprisoned for. There was another thing he worried about. Harry was so desperate for a family that he might just excuse any of their past misdeeds. Not that he knew if Regulus had actually followed Voldemort, but it would make sense if he did considering Rabastan had been convicted of committing crimes in the war. He sighed he would worry about it if it truly became a problem because as of right now Voldemort was without a body. The muggle saying was 'out of sight, out of mind' and Harry would employ that for now.
He was mostly going to focus on his more positive feelings about the situation he found himself in. The nervous excitement he felt for the moment when he would meet Regulus. He wondered what his father looked like and if he could see any familial resemblance between them. Harry couldn't also help but be curious if Sirius really was related to Regulus and if they are he wondered what their relation to one another was. The thought of his godfather made him frown. He desperately hoped that Sirius hadn't known about James and Lily Potter stealing him from his family. Harry didn't know how he would handle it if Sirius did indeed know about it.
The door to the hospital room opened and it effectively broke Harry out of his distressing thoughts. He looked up to see a tall dark haired man enter. At first glance Harry could immediately pick out the fact that this man was very wealthy, from the expensive robes he wore, and he was powerful. The teen could practically feel the static of the man's magic brushing against his newly changed core. And for some reason the touch of his magic seemed familiar to him and gave him the feeling of finally coming home.
His eyes locked onto the stranger's gray ones that looked so similar to his. Harry looked closer at the man now having a feeling of who the person in front of him was. He could almost mistake him for Sirius that was how similar he looked to his godfather. There were minimal differences such as his hair reaching his shoulders, but instead of Sirius waves, his curled at the bottom. His facial features were sharp and angular and he was as pale as Harry now was. It was at this time that Harry noticed he was also being looked at closely by those unguarded gray depths. Those eyes spoke of such grief making something squeeze tightly in his chest knowing that his absence had probably caused it to be there even if it hadn't been his fault that he was gone from this man's life.
"Hi," Harry whispered gently breaking the silent tension between them. His voice was very smooth and very silky. Harry wondered if he would be a good singer now with his voice different from what it once was.
The man blinked once at the interruption from the careful inspection he was doing of Harry before a soft smile curled at the edge of his lips. "Hello, son." His deep voice broke just a little with emotion. Harry smiled tentatively at Regulus as he had no clue what to say or how to even comfort the man.
Regulus felt his heart constrict at the sight of such a familiar smile gracing his son's lips. It looked like Rabastan's shy smiles he used to give before he became more confident in himself. His son was so beautiful just like Rabastan with having the ethereal beauty Gwyneth Lestrange née Blishwick passed on to her younger son. It now lived on in her grandson. Although his son did take a lot of the Black features, but the full lips and heavy lidded eyes came from Rabastan. The straight ebony hair was also another thing his husband passed down to their child. He couldn't help but think of all these years that he grieved for his son was all for naught. If he hadn't believed he had died then maybe he could have been reunited with Serpens sooner instead of waiting for the blood adoption potion to be removed.
He walked up the bed making his son look up at him with a nervous expression on his face. "I'm sorry Serpe- Harry," he hated using the name the blood traitors had given his son. "If I had known you were alive… I would have never stopped looking for you."
Harry glanced up at the other man and he could see how utterly serious his father was. "I know." Because he did know just from seeing Regulus' reaction to him that he wouldn't have ever given up looking for him. "You were going to call me something else. Did I go by another name when I was with you?"
His father nodded taking the seat off to the side of his bed. "Yes. Rabastan and I had named you Serpens Pollux Black. Serpens because the Black family are all named after stars and constellations. The name Pollux came from my maternal grandfather and I wanted to name you after him."
Harry frowned not sure if he wanted to go by another name. He didn't exactly like sticking with a name that the people who had stolen him gave him. Plus the real Harry Potter was dead and he was only a replacement. It made him feel uncomfortable and also like his life was completely a lie. Which in reality it was.
"I don't know if I can suddenly go by another name," Harry began and he quickly averted his gaze when he saw the hurt in Regulus' eyes. "Yet I know I can't be Harry Potter anymore. In fact I was never that boy. He died and they," he snarled, "replaced him with me. So I might not want to go by another name but I don't think I can be Harry Potter anymore. Does that make any sense?" Harry furrowed his brow and looked questioningly at Regulus.
"It does make sense," Regulus nodded. "I would like for you to go by the name we gave you at birth, but I will understand if you choose to continue as Harry. Of course your last name would still be different since it would be Black."
Harry bit his lip and mulled over his options. "I think I'm going to give up being Harry. I don't want to always think of myself as replacing a child that died. No I think I'll like being Serpens Black." He said grinning shyly at Regulus whose stiff posture relaxed minutely.
"Thank you," his father replied with genuine relief.
They were interrupted from further discussion when Healer Baybridge knocked on the door before coming in. "Well Lord Black, I have all the discharge paperwork filled out that only needs your signature. Then you will be free to leave with young Mr. Black."
The teen had many more questions for Regulus, but decided that he would just have to wait until they went home wherever that was.
Anyone still wanting to read this story? Let me know in a review.
Chapter 3: Chapter 3
By Polaris Aries Black
Rise of the Black Heir
Serpens stepped out of a large fireplace into Black Manor. It was the home his parents had resided in when he was born. The entrance hall he stepped into was elaborate with cream colored walls and a marble tiled floor. It was beautiful, light and airy. He was pulled from his inspection when a quick silently casted spell was cast upon him banishing the ash from the black robes his father had brought to the hospital for him to change into.
"Welcome to Black Manor, Serpens." His father said. "I will take you on a tour and show you your rooms."
"Rooms?" Serpens questioned gray eyes looking at Regulus in surprise.
"Yes, rooms," The Lord Black said motioning for him to follow. "You will have an en suite bedroom, a sitting room, and your own study."
Serpens remained quiet at that. He wasn't sure what he would do with all that space after all he had grown up in a cupboard and then was moved into Dudley's second bedroom when he was eleven. Even at Hogwarts he never had that much space to call his own since he lived in a dormitory. He followed Regulus as he pointed out different rooms such as the formal sitting room, the ballroom, and the large dining room used to entertain a lot of guests. His father's study was also on the first floor of the manor. There was a huge library that had its main entrance on the ground floor but it went up the three floors of their home. It was filled with so many books that Serpens was sure Hermione would never be seen again if she were to ever discover the library.
The second floor had the informal sitting room and many different en suite guest bedrooms. There was another door that led to the library on this floor. On the third floor was reserved for family only. If one was not a Black, or married to a member of the House of Black, then they would not be permitted on the third floor. It had a blood ward on it which repelled anyone not of their family. The reason for the added security was because his ancestors were paranoid people and didn't trust an enemy not to try to kill one of them while sleeping. It also had a door to the top most level of the library and once again only a Black was permitted on third floor because it had the grimoires passed down from generation to generation with magic only their family was allowed to know.
"Here are your rooms, Serpens," Regulus said showing him the bedroom that was done in earthy tones. There was a walk in closet that was empty. "I will floo call the tailor I work with to come and create some clothes for you. I should be able to have him over today. Be prepared to be poked and prodded by him." Regulus said charcoal eyes shining in amusement.
Serpens groaned, but a part of him was pleased. He had never really had his own clothes except his Hogwarts uniform. It would be nice to have something that solely belonged to him for once. "What about my things from the Dursleys?" He asked as his father led him back down the stairs to the first floor.
"I shall have a house elf retrieve them." Regulus said. "One other thing, Serpens, the manor has a basement and I would ask you not to go down there unless I am with you. There is a potions lab that can be dangerous not to mention the training room which has been created to throw offensive spells and cursed daggers at you."
"That's fine," Serpens replied though he was curious about the training room.
"Good," Regulus nodded as he guided his son to the second floor informal sitting room. "I imagine you have questions for me." He said sitting down on the black armchair that had the unlit fireplace on its right. Serpens took the other armchair that faced his. He lit the fireplace so it would warm the slightly chilly room.
"Yeah I do. I just don't know where to start," Serpens said sheepishly.
"I do imagine that this must be as shocking for you as it is for me." Regulus reassured.
"I guess what I want to know was how I ended up with the Potters. I know what Healer Baybridge told me, but I'm still unclear on how it happened exactly."
"Fair enough," his father said. "I will give you a little more information to help explain just what I believe happened. You were born on July 1st, 1980 in this very home. The Blacks always have their heirs born in their ancestral home. It is tradition." Regulus expression was carefully neutral however Serpens could see a deep sadness in his eyes as he spoke about something that must be awfully painful for him to remember.
"You were so little. Rabastan was so protective of you, we both were of course, but I swear if my husband could he never would have put you down. It was just after your first birthday that we were doing some remodeling on our home so we had been living for a short time at Lestrange Manor until it was taken care of. We left you under the care of your nanny elf as we had both been called away." Here Regulus paused, his steady voice wavering a little. "We came right away when we the wards alarmed us of a raid done by the Order." His father sneered. "I assume that either James or Lily took you as they were both there during the raid. I was led to believe you had died since the part of the house that was on fire had been where we were staying."
Regulus eyes closed as he remembered that terrible heart wrenching day that had destroyed their lives. It was a sad day for both the Black and Lestrange families.
Serpens let his father sit silently for several moments. He mulled over what he had been told. He wished that he could remember the time he spent with Regulus and Rabastan but it was an impossible wish. Anger at the Potters was bubbling with him. It was clear as day just how affected Regulus was and he didn't want to imagine just how hard it must be on Rabastan. The man was stuck in Azkaban with his worst memories he was forced to relive. It wasn't all that hard to imagine that Serpens would be something his dad would have to experience over and over again. The teen was even more curious about what crime Rabastan committed that would put him in that hell of a prison for life. Had it truly been worth it to his dad to end up there of all places?
Regulus opened his eyes and if they were a little shinier than usual neither commented on it. "Do you have any more questions?"
Serpens decided to go with an easier question than his first had been. "Are you related to Sirius Black?"
"Yes I am," Regulus nodded. "In fact he is my brother though I think he'd try to deny any relation to myself and the House of Black. It doesn't help that he had been disowned."
"So he's my uncle? Is he still my godfather because the Potters were the one to choose him?" He said ignoring the disowned part so he could ask the more important question.
"Yes he's your uncle. I don't believe he is your godfather. In fact I think it's impossible for him to be yours. He was most likely made the original Harry Potter's godfather and assumed that you were still the same godson when they took you. I don't think my brother was as heartless as people believe that he would condone stealing his brother's only child." Regulus stated knowing he was probably right. Sirius may hate him, but he would never hurt him so. "You see, godfathers and godmothers are chosen exactly seven months after a baby is born when they do a naming ceremony if they follow the old traditions and choose the child's godparents then. If they do not follow the old ways they will simply put it in their wills that the parents choose so and so to be a guardian to the baby should anything happen to them. They just call it being godparents but unless they do the naming ceremony it is just a title with no meaning."
"Who are my godparents, then?" Although a part of Serpens was sad that Sirius wasn't actually his godfather. He was reassured that at least his uncle hadn't known about the kidnapping if Regulus' theory were to be believed.
"Rodolphus Lestrange is your godfather he is also your uncle since he is Rabastan's older brother. Your godmother is Narcissa Malfoy she is my first cousin."
He had never heard of Rodolphus before but then again he didn't know many of the pureblooded families. Serpens would've asked about his uncle if he hadn't been so surprised at the mention of the last name Narcissa had. "Malfoy?" He asked hoping he was joking. He did not want to be related to either Draco or Lucius.
"Narcissa is married to Lucius. She has one son that you should know since you both are in the same year. Draco Malfoy?"
He grimaced at the fact that his godmother was the mother of his rival the spoil prat Draco.
"I see that you have heard of him," Regulus said his voice tinged with amusement.
"We're definitely not friends," Serpens muttered his gray eyes stormy with his irritation of being related to Draco.
"Well we shall have to see to correct that," his father said holding up a hand to stop Serpens from responding. "He's family and if you had been raised by me than you would have grown up together."
"I won't make any promises," Serpens frowned not realizing he looked very much like Regulus at that age when he had been unhappy with something.
"All I ask is that you try. We purebloods have a mask that we wear in public, but most of the time we act differently when we are with family."
Serpens nodded reluctantly though he was sure Draco was always a spoiled brat in public and at home. He would do his best to give him a chance since the blonde was a part of his family however he wasn't going to hold his breath on them being able to have any kind of amicable relationship. They did have a bad history together and the same went for Lucius Malfoy.
A house elf in a crisp white pillow case with the Black crest stitched on it popped into the sitting room. "Tippy be sorry to be interrupting Master Black and young Master. Miss Cissy be requesting entrance through the floo. Miss Cissy saying it very important."
"Thank you Tippy, you are dismissed. Speaking of Narcissa I believe she has found out about you if I am not mistaken." Regulus stood up from where he had been sitting and Serpens stood as well. "I would like you to meet her if you are up to it. I will then call the tailor or she won't let me hear the end of it. We shall have to finish this discussion later today."
"I don't believe this!" The shout of Sirius Black broke the tense silence in the small kitchen of Lupin Cottage.
"It has not yet been made public. I had to do some very thorough investigating to even get the amount information that I had collected. I do believe it will be made public sometime this week if not tomorrow." Albus said worried for what this meant for Harry and the war that was bound to happen once Voldemort returned.
"James and Lily wouldn't steal any child. I was there when Harry was born and I would know if my best friend's son died. I would most certainly know if James had ever kidnapped a child to have as a replacement. They wouldn't do this!" Sirius said stubbornly.
"Harry was very sick when he was about to turn one." Remus said softly. "I know you don't want to believe this and frankly neither do I but James and Lily hadn't let us come to Godric's Hollow during that summer if I remember correctly."
"Moony the James I knew would never do this," Sirius refused to see otherwise.
"The blood wards fell early this afternoon," Dumbledore said again. "My source said that Harry is actually the previously believed deceased Serpens Black. He was under a blood adoption potion."
"No," Sirius shook his head. He couldn't believe it and didn't want to. No matter how much he hated his brother for choosing to become a Death Eater, he would never wish this on him. It was wrong to steal a child and Sirius was sure James knew that.
But the evidence was damning since Harry Potter turned out to be Serpens. Sirius didn't want to believe James and Lily did this, but the facts were against his argument. He slumped in his chair feeling the fight leave him.
Albus was truly worried about the prophecy because Harry Potter was supposedly the only one who could save them from Voldemort. Now he was the offspring of Death Eaters and his parents were part of two of the darkest pureblooded families there was. He was marked by Tom but his birthday did not fall at the end of July. So was the prophecy now void or was it truly about Neville. He stroked his beard in thought. Maybe it would be possible to get custody of Harry since Regulus was a suspected Death Eater though the fact that he was 'proven innocent' didn't help Dumbledore's case.
Sirius sighed heavily. This was too much for the fragile Azkaban escapee and so he did the only thing he could do to cope with the news of Harry Potter turning out to be the stolen heir of the Black family. He summoned a bottle of firewhiskey and drank straight from the bottle. He relished the burn hoping if he drank enough than maybe he could forget for a little while.
"He looks like a proper Black," Narcissa stated than turned to Regulus. "Although I can see some of Rabastan in him as well."
It had been an hour since her abrupt arrival after finding out about her godson being alive and well instead of dead. She was almost angry with her younger cousin for not telling her straight away, but she did understand that he needed time with his son. Serpens had been a little reluctant meeting her. It was written clearly on his face. She hoped he would feel more comfortable with her soon. Narcissa knew there was a lot of bad history between the Malfoys and Harry Potter. Nevertheless he was a Black now and a part of her family. He was her godson and she was determined to have a good relationship with him no matter what it took. She would not let those filthy blood traitors take any more from her than they already had.
"Are you surprised, Cissy?" Regulus asked as they both watched Serpens get fitted for robes. "He's my heir so the Black family traits run strong in him. I'd imagine if Rabastan and I had been responsible for continuing his line than our next child would have taken more after of him rather than me." Regulus' eyes went distant at the thought of his husband but he soon regained his neutral mask.
"I know and it does make sense, cousin." She said. "He'll need training if he is ever to be respected by others of our station."
"Of course," Regulus said looking to her with a smile curling at the edge of his lips. "I would be most honored to have you guide my heir as Aunt Cassiopeia had done for us when we were younger."
Serpens made a face when he heard his father requesting Narcissa help in his training. Even though he had always wanted to have family it was still a little hard to stomach the fact that he was related to the Malfoys of all people. What would training even entail? The more time that passed the more questions that came to mind.
"I would be delighted to help you and your son," she said with a new light shining in her sapphire eyes.
"You were always my favorite cousin," Regulus told her.
"Have you decided when you are going to visit Rabastan? I'm sure it would be of great help to learn of his son not being dead as we all thought." Narcissa whispered quietly to make sure she was not overheard by the tailor or Serpens.
"I am planning on going tomorrow," he answered seriously. It was a secret he kept that he visited his husband once a week ever since Rabastan had been sentenced. His old Slytherin acquaintance worked a guard shift at Azkaban and with a pouch of gold Regulus was allowed an hour to visit his husband with no one the wiser.
"Please send him my love," Narcissa said softly.
"I am unsure if I should bring my son with as well."
"I say bring him. I think it would be utter torture to Rabastan to be told that his son lives without getting the chance to meet him."
"Do you feel it would be too soon?" Regulus asked truly wishing for some advice.
"I think Serpens will want the chance to see him. I think you should explain more about the war tonight before you approach the subject with him. I highly doubt Dumbledore or any of his Light friends had told him anything about what happened before the Dark Lord's fall."
Regulus sighed. "I feel it is too soon for such heavy conversations. I do not wish to strain our new relationship."
"These questions are bound to be the ones he has already thought of. If you put the conversation off than he might believe you have something to hide." Narcissa advised.
"Very true," he agreed. "I will do as you say."
"I am finished Lord Black," the tailor said. "I will send the finished robes to you tomorrow."
"Thank you, Mr. Aresco." Regulus said as he called an elf to lead the man out. "Will you be staying with us for dinner, Cissy?" He asked.
"No, I will leave you to enjoy the rest of your evening." She smiled at both of them who looked so similar with the proud features of the Blacks. "I hope to see you soon, Serpens. I would like to get to know my godson. If am I not being too forward, cousin, but I am sure my family would love to come for dinner sometime."
"Of course, Narcissa you are always welcomed."
"Good then I will take my leave."
It was but a moment later that both father and son saw her to the floo in the main entrance hall.
"How about you have some time on your own? As I am sure this day has been overwhelming for you. I do want to have a discussion with you after dinner so you can continue asking questions at that time." Regulus said placing his hand on Serpens shoulder.
"Thanks," his son said gratefully. "You're right I really do need some time to think."
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