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Two for the price of one

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Chapter 01

The young boy eyed the fruit and vegetables displayed outside of the bodega, mouth watering and stomach growling. His eyes took in the street, as well as the amount of people walking about. Enough to hinder persuit, but not too many as to make his escape impossible after he took what he needed to survive.

He hated having to steal, but he was left with not other option. At least not until he turned eighteen years old, and he was only seven. He was not going back into foster care, ever. He had already escaped five times in less than two and a half months.

“Well, time for breakfast,” he muttered to himself. Then confidently strode to the bodega.

A very tall, muscular, blond man was in front of him doing his shopping, and Harry saw it as a great advantage. He was dwarfed by him, so he could use him to hide while he pocketed a couple of apples, a pear, and two oranges. Then the man went to the vegetables and Harry followed, taking three tomatoes, a couple of carrots, one squash, and two large broccoli.

Probably ninety nine point nine percent of the kid population of the world hated the green stuff. Harry was part of the tiny percentage that not only liked it, he loved broccoli. Sometimes (most of the times) it was what was left over most at meals at Privet Drive number four. There was usually enough quantity to fill him up. His cousin hated it, but for once his aunt was firm, and Dudley had to eat at least one floret, usually two though.

He already had enough to make himself a soup, but added a coliflower as well. His young body demanded much more food than it had before he changed, and of better quality as well, and it was not always easy to obtain what he needed while living on the streets.

Tall, blond, and muscular had finished his shopping and moved to get things weighted. Without the man acting as a barrier, the store clerk caught him stealing a cucumber and putting it into his back-pack. He had been craving some proper cucumber sandwiches for while, so he was not giving it up.

‘Shit!’ Harry thought alarmed. He still finished packing the cucumber in his back pack, and got ready to bolt. “Oops!” He exclaimed aloud.

“Hey! Tell your kid he has to have everything weighted before he can take it,” the clerk told tall, blond, and muscular.

“I don’t have kids,” the man told the clerk in a clearly confused tone. Then he turned to see who the man was speaking off and froze. The young man’s blue eyes opened wide in what was clearly shock and disbelief, mouth agape. “Good Lord! That’s… that’s NOT possible!” In his shock his voice sounded more like a squeak.

Harry too gaped at the sight. Before him was a man who could be his biological father’s twin, and of whom Harry was practically a miniature clone of; except for his emerald green eyes and his unruly messy hair. But it could not be. His father was dead, and he had had no siblings. Besides, his father was Killed-In-Action back in 1945 during the Second muggle World War. He had crashed a plane filled with bombs in the artic.

The young boy had been conceived in a petri dish, or whatever was used for In Vitro Fertilization. His adoptive father had been sterile, and his mother had wanted a child so much. It was his great grandmother who provided them with a donor’s sperm. It had been taken from his biological father without his consent so many years ago.

The man in question was Captain Steven Grant Rogers also known as Captain America. His great grandmother had known his biological father well, and she had not approved of the Strategic Scientific Reserve taking those samples. Great grandma Peggy had stolen them, and kept them safe from being used to create super soldiers even when at the time In-Vitro Fertilization did not exist.

Great grandma Peggy, whom Harry had never met even helped her grandchild to find a doctor to help her get pregnant. They had used Glamours to hide his true appearance, and told no one. For twenty-five years Harry had thought he was the son of James Potter, until Petunia was in her death bed and told him about the old Evans house.

The Evans house in Cokeworth had magical protections, and was also magically modified, so Petunia had not been able to sell it, or rent it. Not that she could have since it was deeded to Lily and/or her children. The most Petunia was able to do with the house was used it as storage space. It was where she placed many things which had belonged to Lily and her parents.

Petunia had kept the existence of the house from Harry out of spite, and jealousy. The Evans had been her godparents, and took her in after her own were killed in a car crash, but the Evans had never adopted her. To make things worse, she ended on bad terms with them because of Lily’s (who was actually their biological child) magic.

Magic offended her, and more than once Petunia demanded the Evans got rid of the Freak. She felt she should have inherited everything because she was older, never mind she was not really their daughter. Petunia got nothing, the Evans had given her a home, and love, but she had been an ungrateful brat. Only when she realized she was dying did Petunia accept how petty she had been and told Lily’s son what she kept from him.

It was at his Evans granparents' house where he found his mother’s diaries and the truth about his parentage. He had thankfully told no one, and this was how he had managed to escape Ginevra, Ronald, and Molly after they De-Aged him in hopes of getting control of his vaults. They were also after his seats in the Wizengamot.

They had had it all planned (well, Molly did) since before he attended Hogwarts, but her plans were trounced because he never married Ginevra as they had expected. Hell, he never went back to dating her. He knew she had given him Amortencia to date her during his sixth year, Harry wanted nothing to do with the obsessed fan girl.

The traitors had him trapped at Grimmauld Place number twelve, which was stupid, as Harry was the master of the house. The trio never saw the Glamours slowly fade after they gave him the potion, as they thankfully took about a week to fade.

The three of them had also been too busy thinking what they should do to become Harry’s guardians and obtain access to his vaults. Somehow the De-Aging Potion broke the Glamours his mother placed on him at his birth.

In the years after Harry learnt about Regulus Black’s fate, Kreacher had come to care about him. The old house-elf was loyal to him, and knew who was loyal to his Master. Harry had not understood at first why the elf disliked the three Weasleys so much.

His house-elf saved him, but Kreacher was too old and died after he transported him to New York City. Harry never knew why Kreacher chose to take him to the USA in the first place, but it had kept him safe from the greedy traitors. British magicals still tended to be too self centered, so it would never occur to then he would escape to another country.

The shock of seeing his father’s clone kept him frozen in place for an instant, then his survival instinct kicked in. Yes Harry did have one, although during his school years it went mostly ignored. He stomped as hard as he could on the tall man’s foot, then bolted down the street using every trick of Parkour he learnt when he was still in an adult’s body, to gain distance between him and the store clerk.

The blond recovered quite fast, and took off after them as well. He was surprisingly agile, and able to keep up with Harry even when the clerk stopped, too winded to go on. Harry was much smaller than his physical age average, and too skinny.

He had always been a scrawny runt as a child, but had recovered and gained a healthy weight after the war. Unfortunately, living on the streets of New York as a street rat for over six months took their toll on him. He had not always been able to find enough food.

Still, he was faster, stronger, and with better reflexes than many fit adults. His mind was mostly that of a child of seven, but thirty-one year old Harry was still there as well. Much like two people living in the same body, with the child being the dominant personality. On situations like this, the adult mind took over to ensure their survival, and he had been an Auror for a few years, as well as lived all his life being hunted.

Harry ran at top speed dodging the people walking down the street, and jumping over obstacles no child as small as he was should be able to with surprising ability. Unfortunately for him tall, blond, and muscular was equally nimble on his feet, and since he had the longer legs he was gaining up on Harry.

Taking his chances Harry crossed the street, not stopping, and jumping over cars to avoid being hit. He was not letting himself be caught and end back in the foster system where he was more abused, and starved, than he had been while living on the streets. The clone of Captain America kept up, jumping over cars, and barely avoiding being run over.

Harry groaned, by Merlin, but the man was persistent, and took off again. He turned back to see the blond was gaining too much ground on him, and did not see the truck coming out of a service alley too fast to stop in time. It hit him head on, sending the small boy flying onto the incoming traffic on the street.

He hit the pavement hard. It left him winded, and barely conscious. There were tire screeches, and the smell of them burning as cars braked. Then strong arms gathered him, and a large body curled up protectively around him instants before something large hit them.

The man took the brunt of the impact, which sent them flying a few feet. There was a burst of powerful Accidental Magic, which created an invisible shield around them, and cushioned their landing. Harry lost consciousness, as his mind idly noticed the man who protected him smelled of Old Spice after shave.

Chapter Text

Chapter 02

Being hit by a small truck hurt, but he had done worse to his body during the war, and even before. He had been beaten by bullies often enough while growing up, but surprisingly nothing was broken this time, and thanks to the serum the bruising was almost gone.

It had been three days since he came across the child. His child. SHIELD doctors had confirmed it. They performed something called a DNA test. Steve had not understood the explanation, but it came to the fact the child was 100% his simply because there was no one else in the world with those genes and the Super Soldier Serum. The boy had both.

It did not matter he had been frozen and lost in the artic when the boy was conceived. Steve was a father, and he had not even gotten laid to produce the kid; which truth be told he would not have minded. The people from SHIELD told him he was in no way responsible for the child, but frankly after they had investigated the boy’s practically non existent background Steve decided to take his chances at fatherhood.

There were no birth records, school records, or medical records for the boy. He had simply appeared in the system six months ago when social services had picked him up and sent him into foster care. The child told the social workers his name was Steven, and provided no last name.

The psychologist who evaluated him was sure the kid was lying. More than once they found him reacting to the name Harry, as that was the name of one of the social workers. They also discovered he had a genius level IQ, and while he tried to fool them with what he knew, it was shocking to discover the child was probably as advanced as a High School graduate or perhaps even more.

Social Services sent him to a foster home, and the child had complained he was being abused there as well as starved, but medical checks found no sign of abuse. They now knew why, he healed much faster than any normal person; much like Steve did. By the time the social workers checked on the child any sign of abuse was long gone. The boy had escaped the same foster home at least six times since he was sent there.

The system was not equiped to deal with a child like the one currently unconscious on the bed. Neither was Steve, he was a soldier who grew up without a father or siblings, and frankly he knew nothing about this world after doing a Rip Van Winkle. He had just ‘awoken’ sixty-six years into the future.

SHIELD (Director Fury actually) promised to help him both adapt to the new world, as well as deal with taking care of his son should he choose to get involved. Which Steve had decided to accept after spending three days, with their respective nights, by the boy’s bedside in SHIELD’s medical facility.

Steve had taken the time to seriously consider what his actions should be with regards to the boy; and seeing how small and vulnerable he looked, convinced Steve taking in the kid was the right thing to do; even if he was not sure he was ready to be a parent.

He had wanted children, but it was something part of a vague future, for after the war, and if he and Peggy ended together. At the time they had been nothing more than friends, although the intention for more had been there, but his trip into the ice put a stop to them.

The child’s injuries had been very serious, and any other would have at the very least ended paralized and with severe brain damage. The Super Soldier Serum had taken care of healing everything while the doctors had kept the child in a coma for three days. They had deemed him healed enough, and the boy should be waking up any minute.

A soft groan alerted him to his… son regaining consciousness. The monitors hooked to him had changed slightly, and while he did not understand exactly how, or what they were monitoring, Steve was told those changes would let him know the boy was conscious. Steve observed him curiously, he was not reacting like he expected a kid to.

The boy did not open his eyes right away, he was clearly assessing his own condition, and then his surroundings. A soldier would act like that, Steve did it practically by instinct, and he had not been a soldier for more than two years. Unlike some of the people he had known before he crashed the plane. He frowned not liking his son’s reaction. No child should find himself needing to act in such a way.

The boy’s heart monitor started beeping faster, probably when he realized he was in a hospital, but it went back down. The doctor who was in charge of the child raised his eyebrows in shock. Clearly a kid was not supposed to be able to control his reactions like that.

“We know you’re awake Steven,” Steve decided it was enough of pretending. The boy opened his vivid emerald green eyes and turned to look at him.

“Steve Rogers died in 1945, and he had no family. So… are you a clone or something?” Harry blurted out, and Older-Harry mentally face palmed and groaned.

Kid-Harry had control, that was just so… fucked up. They were both stubborn as hell being the same person, albeit at different ages, and Kid-Harry was known to out stubborn him on occasion. Though that was probably because Older-Harry was the ‘supposedly’ mature one, and knew which battles he could win. Unfortunately the kid version of him was not one to relinquish control unless he clearly saw danger.

The Captain America look alike smiled, as did the doctor… Healer. The man was a wizard, Harry could feel his magic. Then he did a double take when he looked at the Captain. Harry could also feel some magic coming from Rogers, which was puzzling. He had done as thorough a research as posible when he found out the man was his biological father. There had never been information about the man being magical at all.

Perhaps the Accidental Magical Shield had not been his doing after all. Harry thought it was, but since he became the Master of Death his magic was not detectable, and if there was a wizard in the room someone had clearly noticed there was magic at work. A shield like the one which protected them was not visible after all.

“Actually I ended frozen when the plane crashed, and the Super Soldier Serum kept me… asleep but alive,” Steve chose to reply. “I was found and rescued from the ice less than a week ago.”

Harry stared at the young man as his mind processed the fact it indeed was the real Steven Grant Rogers sitting there. He could sense Rogers was not lying. His biological father was alive, and to his shock the man was actually younger than he was; well, than Older-Harry should have been.

This year Harry was supposed to turn thirty-two, but he was De-Aged to a seven year old with no way to get back to his rightful age except for growing up again. Harry was so screwed. The potion used to De-Age him was forbidden for a reason. Not that those bastards had cared about the secondary effects, only that it did what they wanted.

“Blimey, and I thought I was Fate’s favorite bitch!” He exclaimed, his mouth having run off without engaging with his brain, as was usual for Kid-Harry.

The kid had probably been paying close attention to his rants again. Older-Harry needed to have a few words with the kid about not repeating all he said. The ‘Do as I say, and not as I do’ had never worked on him when he was growing up; he doubted it would work on his younger self. Older-Harry had to try though.

Kid-Harry’s words had shocked both older men, his father in particular. Older-Harry could not blame them, had it been Teddy he would have probably not been happy. He had used a Mouth Soaping Spell on his godson for less than that.

Harry had not been one for much swearing, lately though his vocabulary left much to be desired. But really, if they knew all that had happened to him in his life they might actually agree with him.

“Must run in the family or something,” Kid-Harry said still running at the mouth. Older-Harry mentally sighed, there was no stopping the kid now, he was on a roll. “It must have sucked big time to find yourself sixty-six years in the future. I’d have probably freaked out.”

“If I used such language at your age my Ma would have chewed me out, washed my mouth with soap, and tanned my hide,” Steve reprimanded the kid, who shrugged.

“I’ve had worse from the relatives who raised me just for breathing, and from the bloody bastards social services left me with, so a hide tanning and a mouthful of soap aren’t going to kill me,” he told them non plussed. Older-Harry had dealt with the abuse he suffered in his childhood, and it had helped the younger one immensely.

“You know it’s not your fault, don’t you child? That it is the adults who did wrong, and that there are laws to protect you now?” The Healer told him while his biological father stared sadly and rather angry, as well as surprised at hearing there were laws now to protect children from abusive adults. Harry supposed there had not been any back in his days. “We need their names so they can pay for hurting you.”

“Yeah, I know,” he said with a shrug. “My relatives are dead, they crashed.” It was easier to explain it that way than saying both died a few years ago. Longer than he was supposed to be alive. “My Mum and my adoptive Dad died when I was one, they crashed too. That’s why I ended with the psychos in the first place.

“As to the foster home, well you already know my name is Steven, so you know where I was sent to. Are you going to do something about the other kids there because some have been there longer than me, and had it worse than I did?” He wanted to help the children living with those monsters, who made the Dursley seem normal.

“Those people will be arrested,” the Healer reassured him, “the authorities are now gathering evidence against them. So they should be brought up on charges soon.”

“Good,” Harry said with a nod and sounding pleased. Hopefully those kids would have better luck than he did.

“Now, we know your name is not Steven, at least not your first name. You are a clever boy, and for someone your age you did a good job, but you slipped.” The Healer pointed out.

“Hmm… Really?” Mentally Older-Harry sighed, while Kid-Harry began to get nervous.

Kid-Harry probably did slip. He had been kidnapped, been turned into a kid, found out there were now two of them living in the same scrawny body, and on top of everything they had been molested by the psycho bitch (Ginevra Weasley). The icing on the cake came when he realized the Glamours his mother cast to hide his true parentage had started to fade.

Kreacher rescued him at a great cost to the ancient house-elf, he died leaving Harry alone in another country and in the mundane world. Kreacher left him alone as well as at the mercy of social services, although both Harrys agreed it was probably not what the ancient house-elf intended.

At the time they were also dealing with a way for an older and younger version of him to co-exist in the same mind and body, without going insane, or murdering each other. So it had not been the best scenario for a flawless performance.

“Really Harry,” the doctor said and Kid-Harry could not help the fear in his expression, even if it was only a moment before he hid it. He had experience from dealing with the Dursley.

|Calm down kid, panicking won’t help us.| Older-Harry soothed giving his younger self a hug. They shared a mental plane where they could both be together. Odd as it was, he was parenting himself.

Harry had some parenting experience with Teddy, before Andromeda decided to move away from the British Wizarding World. Andromeda Black and her grandchild moved to an English speaking Wizarding town in Canada. Neither of them had been safe in the British Wizarding World because of him, and her family’s reputation.

Teddy was Voldemort’s Vanquisher’s Godchild after all, and the son of a known werewolf (even if he did not have the Lycanthropy). To make things worse Andromeda looked too much like her sister Bellatrix, and more than half the British Wizarding World hated the psycho witch.

Andromeda never told him where the town they moved to was located, and as much as it hurt him, Older-Harry respected her choice. They were be safer without him, and away from the British Wizarding World.

|But what if they send us back to the British Wizarding World? To… to… THEM!| Harry shuddered starting to feel terrified. |I don’t want HER to do that to us again, or for her to make us… Do things…| He shuddered again, and the men noticed.

|They won’t send us back. Our father is alive, and even if he does not take us, he won’t let them harm us if we ask for help. He was known for doing the right thing, and protecting people. I guess that’s where we get the ‘saving-people-thing’ that has come to drive me nuts.|

“My name is Steven, not Harry,” the boy stated firmly not listening to Old-Harry. The older one sighed, nothing unusual there.

“Why are you afraid of using your real name Harry?” Steve asked. He had noticed the kid was really terrified, but hid it well. “You said your relatives are dead.”

“They are, and I’m not afraid.” But his voice betrayed him, as did the light tremors running down his body. He did not want the red headed psycho fan girl to find them, and her back stabbing, child beating brother.

“They why don’t you tell us your full name to begin with? You’re old enough to know it.” The Healer insisted.

Older-Harry debated whether to tell the men his real name, or another one. Calling himself Steven Granger to honour his best friend and sister in all but blood would be a good option… If he chose to go that route, which Kid-Harry seemed to believe was the best chance they had. Henry was not so sure, too many things could go wrong when using too many lies.

He could honor Hermione in other ways. By studying hard and excelling at what he did. She had always believed in him; she was also the only one who knew he was smarter than he let on. Hermione had helped him keep up with his muggle education, and to hide his intelligence at Hogwarts. No one expected, or wanted, Harry to be smart. Specially not Dumbledore.

She had been the first victim of the unholy trio (as he called those three traitorous Weasleys) seven years ago. Hermione had been the kind of wife Molly wanted for her youngest son. She convinced Ron the bushy haired witch would make a great Weasley, it did not hurt that Hermione actually grew into a beautiful woman.

The Weasley matriarch had wanted powerful, smart grandchildren, and new muggle born blood, specially Hermione’s, would provide the family with them. His bushy haired sister was not only very intelligent, she was also one very powerful witch.

Amortencia was used to get his sister to marry Ron, and her life was lost the moment the ceremony ended. Hermione’s body had died giving birth to her second son, after she had lost six. The bastard practically kept her pregnant all the time, he did not give her body a chance to fully recover from all the miscarriages.

Hermione’s spirit had died a few years before that, victim of her husband’s narrow mind, misogynistic tendencies, greed, and jealousy. Bloody Ronald Weasley was an abusive bastard who hated his wife was smarter, and his best mate was richer than him.

|Let me take over Harry.| In their shared mind the younger responded to Harry, and the Older to Henry. It was their real name after all. |I think I can get us some help and protection. Besides, you know we can get access to our vaults without those traitorous Weasels finding out we have a guardian.|

|OK, but… What if they do not believe us?| Kid-Harry had no experience with adults being helpful. In his young life, adults tended to ignore him at best, and hurt him at worst.

|Then we leave. No Wards can stop the Master of Death, you know that. Life on the streets until we’re eighteen is not an apealing prospect. I want a better life for you, but we’ll make do if we have to go that route.| Harry agreed, and let him take over.

The first thing Henry did as soon as he had control of the body was to magically check the room for bugs. There were several, mics and cameras, which he disabled. He was surprised to notice Rogers, his father, had sensed the use of magic, but not the Healer; and the man was a fairly powerful wizard.

“The problem is not whether I am old enough to know it or not. The problem is whether I can trust you not to reveal it without my approval and consent. I rather the Wizarding World did not find out about what happened to me just yet… or at all. Will you give me a Wand Oath on your magic Healer?”

“Just me?” The Healer had narrowed his eyes suspiciously, why not the captain? “How did you know I was a wizard anyway.”

“Yes, just you for the time being. Captain Rogers is indeed my blood, and I will go off on a limb and trust him for the moment. As to the magical part, I can sense it.” The other wizard gasped.

Being able to sense who had magic, and who did not was a very rare and sought after talent. Less than 1% of the world’s magical humans were capable of it. The talent came paired with the added ability to see and detect magic on everything else, which was why those who had it had to be registered. It was too easy for them to go around Warded areas. The best Curse Breakers and Warders of the world had the second ability as it was not as rare as sensing who had magical cores, and who did not, as well as their power levels.

The Healer froze, clearly thinking hard, and recognition flooded his mind. There were only very few known witches and wizards capable of sensing who was magical around the globe, and only one, Harry James Potter, was unaccounted for.

Harry sighed, so much for keeping his disappearance from the British Wizarding World a secret. The Weasels had probably demanded Kingsley start a world wide search for him pretending to be concerned for his well being.

With Hermione long gone, there was no one to remind the imbecilic sheep he had not been on good terms with the Weasleys since long before Hermione’s death. Unfortunately those three had still been reaping the benefits and fame of being close to him during his school years. More than anything his real looks would be what protected him the most, as well as remaining in the non-magical world.

“Harry James Potter, the-boy-who-lived and Voldemort’s-Vanquisher. The whole world is looking for you. Your closest friends are very worried,” the Healer told him.

“Well, they can keep looking, because I’m not going back, and those back stabbing, traitorous thieves have not been my friends for over seven years,” Henry practically growled. “Oath now, or Obliviation Healer. Let me assure you my magic is as strong as it was before I ended this tiny, and I don’t need a wand to use it.”

“What is going on? Why are you so suddenly speaking like an adult and not a child?” Steve was beyond confused and concerned about how defensive his kid was, as well as the change in demeanour and attitude.

As to the magic, well he knew about it since his war, so it was not really a surprise. Steve felt magic being cast moments before the boy started speaking like an adult. It was something he could sense since he was a kid. The serum had amplified that sensitivity.

Then during the war he had worked with wizards, and a young one named Charlus Ignatius Potter had even been a member of the Howling Commandos, albeit one who never was mentioned on official channels.

Some of HYDRA’s facilities had been heavily Warded, and Charlus (he had been barely nineteen then) was an incredibly talented Ward Breaker, who had also adapted easily to work with non magical weapons. His membership had been kept secret because they could not reveal magic to the masses, or even some of the higher ups. Few had had clearance enough to know about the Wizarding World.

He had told no one about his sensitivity to magic, but Charlus had noticed. Steve was actually better at sensing Warded areas than Charlus was. The young wizard theorized Steve was probably a Squib, or decended from Squibs and had not been told by his mother.

In Ireland (where his parents were born and raised), and the United Kingdom, those born without magic were shunned at best, and killed at worst. Many had migrated to America since it was not as bad, but neither was it all good for Squibs at the time.

“You’re not surprised about the magic then? Just why I’m no longer acting like a kid?” Henry was surprised. He thought he would have to explain magic to his biological father, and was glad he did not have to. He was never good at it.

“One of my Commandos was a British wizard who operated in the background, so I’m well aware of the Wizarding World,” Steve explained.

The Healer looked at him shocked, and the boy seemed surprised, but not overly so. The Healer did have reason to be shocked since they (meaning SHIELD) had omitted mentioning magic had been at play. Steve had known though, but said nothing because of the International Statute of Secrecy, and the Oaths he swore when he was informed of the existence of witches and wizards. Besides, he had sensed magic had been used before the small truck hit them. He knew some kind of shield had protected them from the small truck and the fall.

“As to your behavior, I do deserve an explanation. I just found out I’m a parent, of a child who clearly is not truly one. So Healer Yates, please make the Wand Oath.” It was an order, even if it was not phrased like one.

“I, Kevin Yates, do swear on my magic to keep what Harry…” the Healer began.

Kevin Yates knew, as well as the rest of the Wizarding World, just how powerful Harry Potter was. He had been one of the best Aurors the British Magical Law Enforcement Department had for a short time, then he became a Technomancer of reknown, and a recluse. But several idiots through the years had learnt the hard way not to wake the sleeping dragon Harry James Potter had become.

“It’s Henry actually,” he corrected. Healer Yates began again and gave him the Wand Oath. Satisfied Harry spoke. “Have you heard of the potion known as Melchiades Youth Elixir?” The Healer gasped, but his father only looked clueless. The potion was relatively new, so there was no chance his father knew about it.

“The potion De-Ages the subject to a specified age. It was created with the intention to help patients of severe emotional trauma to relive their lives. Unfortunately there are terrible side effects which made it unusable. One of them is acute schizophrenia…” he began. The man-child before him should have been acting like a raving lunatic.

“Yes, the potion does De-Age the victim physically, and the mental age is reduced in accordance to the body,” Henry began in what Hermione had once called his lecture tone. “What no one has noticed is that in actuality the potion creates two mental versions of the patient, or victim depending on how it is used. A child one, and an adult one.

“What people believe is schizophrenia, is actually the two versions trying to co-exist in the same body and mind, which is very difficult without proper training. I am a master of the Mind Arts, and Occlumency in particular.” He had learnt them, and potions, as his way to honor Snape. “It helped me to work on a balance and protect my younger self from memories that would harm him.

“My childhood was not a good one to begin with. I fought in a terrible war in the British Wizarding World from age eleven to seventeen, and was an Auror for a short while. I have seen death, and killed as well. Those are not things a little boy of seven should experience, so I keep the memories locked to protect Harry, to give us both a better childhood.

“I am also a Potions Master and know better than most there is no way to counter this potion’s effects. It is because of this I have accepted to let my younger self be the dominant personality, to let him be the child I was not allowed to be. For this reason I only come out when our safety is threatened.”

“So you are in danger at the moment,” Steve asked, his voice filled with concern. He could not wrap his mind about the fact his son was mistreated as a child, or a boy had been allowed to fight in a war.

“Yes, I fear for our life. This is why we were in the non-magical world. Those people who pretend to be my closest friends and family, are actually the ones who kidnapped me and gave me the potion.

“There are archaic laws in the British Wizarding World, which would allow these people full control of me, and in consequence my money. I had no living relatives that I knew of who could challenge their claim to me.”

“I take it then that you are quite wealthy,” Steve deducted, “these people… De-Aged?” he asked for confirmation and got a nod from both wizards, “you just for money?”

“Mostly,” Henry confirmed, “while I have tried to maintain a neutral political position in our government, the fact is my name still carries a lot of weight, and I inherited several seats in the Wizengamot… they are a bit like your congress,” he explained.

“There’s also the fact one of them is an obsessive fan girl, who just wants to marry the-boy-who-lived and Voldemort’s Vanquisher no matter what age. She’s… a sick peadophile,” he shuddered. “To make matters worse, I still have enemies dating as far back as the war.”

“You no longer look like you did Mister Potter, far from it actually,” Yates pointed out. Only the emerald green eyes remained the same, and even their shape was slightly different. “No one who knew you, or has seen photos of you can connect Voldemort’s Vanquisher with the boy you are now.”

Yates filed into his mind the now child had been molested. They would need to find a way to bring the witch to justice. Magicals considered that type of abuse an abomination, as did most mundanes. The Healer also noted Captain Rogers did not react to the word, the man probably did not know what it meant, and he would inform him once he had some time alone with the Captain.

“Your changed looks, and even your De-Aging are to your advantage, and I am sure Director Fury can add to your protection. But care to explain why you have Captain Rogers DNA?”

“IVF, plain and simple,” was his response.

Henry went on to explain about his great grandmother, Margaret Carter, someone he could see his father had cared very much about, probably even loved. Captain Rogers was not very happy to discover someone from the Strategic Scientific Reserve had dared to take samples from him without his consent. Ones that he would have actually never agreed to give in the first place.

Steve was grateful Peggy Carter had stolen them, and his anger at them being used abated. He could not blame her for wanting something of him to remain in the world, he would have probably done the same in her place. Steve also did not object the use she made of his samples. Peggy had been doing a good deed, she had known any resulting child would have been loved by her granddaughter, and not turned into a soldier or lab rat.

Chapter Text

Chapter 03

After the explanations, Healer Yates checked Harry to make sure he was recovering well, and told them the man-child would be able to leave SHIELD's medical the next morning. Although Harry needed to take it easy for a few days. Skele-Grow was excellent at healing broken bones, but they still needed some time to become as strong as they should be.

Harry also needed to be on an intensive Nutritional Potion regimen, plus have a special diet. The boy's body needed to recover the weight and vitamins he lost while living on the streets, and even before that. He was much thinner and smaller than he should be.

The small body had regressed to the condition he had when he was actually seven years old, the Super Soldier Serum had helped, healing it. Unfortunately living on the streets, and in foster homes where his nutritional needs were not met did not do Harry any favors despite the serum. Thankfully they were on time to avoid any long term side effects from malnutrition.

Before they left SHIELD's medical facilities Steve and Henry would have to speak with the agency's Director, Nicholas J. Fury. They needed to decide what type of security Harry would require, if any, as well as what their story would be to get the now small child the proper documents to identify himself.

Henry knew Fury, as the Master Spy had tried to recruit him for SHIELD shortly after the war, while Henry was training to become an Auror. Fury kept trying at least three times a year until Henry quit the Auror Corps when he was twenty. It was when the green eyed wizard decided law enforcement was not what he wanted to do for the rest of his life.

The young wizard got tired of chasing after the bad guys, he had been doing it for far too long. Still, SHIELD'S Director invited Henry to visit the New York offices in hope of convincing him to join the agency.

The young wizard was suitably impressed, but in the end Henry chose not to work for them. He did tell Fury he would help them if they ever had to fight a magical threat, but he did not want to chase bad guys for a living. He was added to SHIELD's surprisingly short list of consultants, along with Anthony Edward Stark also known as Iron Man.

That trip to New York City had been enlightening, and it was where Henry discovered his new passion. Technomancy. Unfortunately living in the British Wizarding World did not provide Henry with what he needed to pursue any education, magical and non, outside Great Britain.

Henry was determined to learn Technomancy, and began studying in earnest to catch up with what wizards in the USA were taught. Being the Master of Death did have some perks though, and immortality was not one of them in his book (he could die, but always had the chance to return, or to move on to other places if he wanted. He did not really see why he would want to something like that).

One of those perks was a companion of sorts, a constant presence in his mind. He was a sentient entity Henry named Limbo because he did not really know what it actually was; and Limbo _was not saying just to annoy him.

Another was a place Limbo called the In Between, which was his domain and where Harry met Dumbledore after being hit with Voldemort's Avada Kedavra. Limbo had access to all knowledge on Earth as well as beyond, and if he felt like it (or believed the Master of Death needed it), Limbo could share some of that knowledge with Henry.

With Limbo's help the young wizard was able to update his magical and muggle knowledge to be up par with the average wizard in the USA. Despite Hermione's efforts, neither she nor he had been up par with regular muggle students.

Once done, and after passing all pertinent exams, Henry finally enrolled in the MIT's technomancer program. He graduated with honors, and in less time than his class mates. All on his own merit and without any more help from Limbo.

Henry went back to Great Britain and started his own Technomancy business. It was a hit with the muggle born, most half bloods, the goblins, and vampires almost instantaneously. They had seen the benefit of using muggle technology with magic, but there was nothing like that in the British Wizarding World.

The Pure Bloods took longer to accept Technomancy, but in the end they embraced it too. It had simply become too common in other countries where the wealthy tended to travel. They found themselves at a disadvantage both socially and financially. This had not sit well with the arrogant British Pure bloods, so they worked on getting up to date.

Henry became wealthy in his own right, and was able to hire others to work for him. Mostly muggle born. He had very trusted people in charge of his business, so with more free time on his hands Henry had been able to persue other subjects he was interested in, like potions.

Healer Yates informed Captain Rogers he needed to speak with him in private before they left, and Steve needed to decide if he wanted to keep Harry by his side, or have SHIELD find him a safe place to live. They had several safe houses the boy could use, but this did not sit well with Steve Rogers.

Steve had already made his mind to keep his son by his side. He had thought less than a week ago he had lost everything he knew and cared about. But he had family now, there was someone who needed him, someone to give him a reason to keep on going and trying to fit in, someone to care about and who would hopefully return the feelings.

Back then he had had Bucky, who was practically his brother in all but blood, but it was not the same as having a child no matter how said child was conceived. He was not letting go the only blood relative he had since his mother died if he could help it. Steve just needed to confirm with Henry and Harry if they wanted to live with him; and was it not odd to be thinking about two people when there was only the body of a small child?

The I.V. and all monitors were removed in the afternoon, and an agent brought him two changes of clothes. An Iron Man pajama set, a pair of jeans, an emerald green t-shirt, a three pack of underwear and socks, as well as sneakers, all surprisingly in his size. He had changed into the pajamas, and then lunch came.

His father had remained in the room with him, and they had talked as to what they should do. Captain Rogers was quite willing to take him in, even when he felt very lost in the new century. The day they met was only his second day on his own outside of SHIELD's facilities. Harry had frowned as he heard what they had been doing to acclimate him to the 21st century.

"They are doing a shoddy job," Henry told his father. Harry was still allowing him in control, at least until they spoke with Fury and decided what they were going to do. "Yes, you need to know the history, and have your questions about what happened then answered.

"But unless they plan to keep you secluded with no contact with the outside world while you get updated, letting you out on the world while trying to limit your exposure to modern technology isn't going to cut it."

"I came to the same conclusion in the two days I was left on my own Henry. There's technology everywhere, and most people have their telephones practically glued to their ears. I've broken three of the things already trying to use them. It's been... disconcerting."

~Henry, I can transfer not only what he needs to know, but also the subjects he has the ability to excel in. But your father will need to pretend he does not know as much for both your sakes.~ Limbo told him.

Limbo had been a constant companion to both wizards mental representations, offering support, comfort, and a metaphorical ear when needed. The situation the Master of Death found himself in was shockingly unique, but then Harry James Potter was known for the impossible happening to, and around, him. Limbo had also assisted whenever he could, mostly in the guise of providing information about laws and tips to help him survive while living on the streets.

~You really think we can trust him that much?~ Although Henry could feel he could.

Family was clearly important to Steve Rogers, the man had been alone since his mother died, with only his best friend Bucky by his side. Having a relative, a son, had the potential to be something the soldier would cling to to keep sane in the new life he was expected to build for himself. Family was also important for Henry as well, it was all he had ever truly wanted since he was a child.

~I only ever told Hermione about being the Master of Death.~ He informed Limbo.

"I bet it was," Henry agreed keeping up both conversations. It was something he got quite good at since Limbo became his companion so many years ago. "I was raised by non magicals, but they did not like to take me out and this kept me rather isolated from the mundane world. So I can understand to a point."

~And she never betrayed you.~ Limbo reassured him, not that he needed to. Hermione had been one very loyal friend to the Master of Death. ~Your father won't either Henry, is a good man with a good heart. It's actually the reason why he was chosen to become the worlds first Super Soldier, and he has lived up to the title.~ He informed him.

~But it is Steven Grant Rogers, and not Captain America what both versions of you need,~ Limbo went on. He saw this as a great opportunity for growth for the three of them. ~He will be a caring parent for the little one, and a loyal friend/brother for you.

~On the other hand, you both are what he needs to find his place in the time he is now. Steven Rogers desperately needs to know he is not alone. He needs to know there is more to life in this century than duty to his country. He needs a friend, a mentor, and a protector. You're older and more experienced than he is Henry, and can prove those for him.~

"I wish I could have done something to keep those monsters from hurting you Henry," Steve said saddly, and wished he could also make them pay for hurting his family. "No child deserves to be hurt by the people supposed to protect, and take care of them."

Steve had seen first hand some parents deal terrible punishments to their kids in his time. He had seen children terribly scarred by their fathers and mothers, but no one said a thing. Parents were allowed to dicipline their children any way they saw fit back then.

He remembered clearly there had been some kids he knew who had actually been killed by their parents, and those monsters did go to jail, but it had been too late for the children. At least from what Healer Yates said there were laws to stop those monsters. It was a point in favor of the 21st century, and Steve was glad it existed even if it clearly was not perfect.

~OK, so what do you propose? Should I Apparate us to KC?~ He could Apparate to his Realm, which he also called the In Between. Normally one had to either be at death's door, or actually dead to access the Realm. But those he personally transported alive, remained alive, if he brought them back.

The In Between was the place between life and death, and it varied for each soul, hence the name Henry gave it. He called it KC for short, because it looked like an empty King's Cross train station most of the time. It had been known to change its looks from time to time, or to provide him with other locations according to his needs.

Time in KC flowed differently, and Henry had yet to find an explanation for it, since Limbo did not want to tell him. It did not matter how long he stayed over there (and Henry was sure he had bee 'up' there for years at one point). So no one was any wiser when he Apparated to KC in the middle of a conversation to look for information, it simply happened too fast for people, technology, or magic to be any wiser. Henry did have to learn to keep acting as if he had never left though.

"There was nothing you could do Steve, and we both know you would have if you could." They had agreed on using first names for the time being. Harry might want to call him something else, like Dad, later on; but Henry did not think he could. "But you were lost in the Artic long before I was conceived. Besides, it was a long time ago for me, and I took therapy to deal with their abuse. I've moved on, and my experience has helped Harry."

~I believe a mental connection will be beneficial for all three of you.~ Limbo suggested.

~Are you certain? Isn't it a bit invasive? We wouldn't have much privacy.~

Harry was not sure why it was a good idea, although admittedly, he had little knowledge of mental connections. They were not considered part of the Mind Arts for some reason. None of the books he had read actually had any explanations as to why it was that way. But then, Wizard kind was not the most logical of the sentient beings.

"It still does not make it right for those people to have hurt you and not be made responsible for their actions." It really bothered him, and it was a certainty a few punching bags would met their demise as soon as he could spend some time in the gym. In the few days since he was 'thawed', Steve discovered they were a good object to be on the receiving end of his frustration, and anger. "It is not right they got away scott free."

~I can make sure you all keep the privacy of your own thoughts.~ Limbo reassured him.

~Well, in that case, go on. Why do you think we need a mental connection?~

"It isn't," he agreed, "but there is not much either you or I can do about it. I've moved on Steve, and that I guess is justice in its own right. I did not let them ruin me. I am what I am because of them, and I like to think I came out all right despite all their efforts to the contrary."

~It will allow you to communicate without having to take over young Harry. You and your father can have adult conversations without involving the little guy. It will keep you sane Henry, since you don't have a body anymore, and it will drive home the fact he will never be alone for Captain Rogers.

~Your father has issues Henry, he is a soldier, and in his mind he was in a war less than a week ago. He sacrificed himself and lived. You understand what it is like because you have been there, and you learnt how to deal with everything resulting from participating in a war. You can help him move on.

~Then there is little Harry. He knows now not all adults are out to hurt him, but you are not physically able to take care of him. The little guy will benefit enourmously from having a couple of adults around who can keep him safe, even if one is just in his mind. A father, and an older brother or an uncle.~

"You've gone quiet Henry, something wrong?" Steve enquired after the young boy had been lost in thought for a few minutes. It looked like he was having a serious mental argument with himself or between both versions of himself?

"Ah, no no, nothing wrong," Harry said distractedly. "Just... Thinking." He bit his lip unsure what to do, a habit he had never been able to get rid off, then decided Limbo would not have suggested it if he did not trust Steve Rogers.

"I have a way to catch you up on all you missed in less than a day." Steve's eyebrows rose almost to his hairline. "I can only do this for you because we are related, and you are a good man with a good heart. This must be kept a secret for both our protection, so you'll have to play dumb for a several months, while I pretend to catch you up on things."

Steve looked at his... son's very serious expression. It was still the thirty-one year old version speaking, and while he had not said it aloud, he could feel it might be a life and death situation. Henry was asking if he could keep an act for long.

Steve was sure most people in these modern times would say he could not. But if someone would have asked Bucky, Peggy, Howard, or Colonel Phillips they would say absolutely. As far as he could tell, history had painted Captain America as this paragon of wholesomeness, righteousness, patriotism, believed him incapable of lying, and made him practically a saint.

People forgot he was as human as the next guy. He had actually lied in his recruitment forms about his name (although he ended registering with the real one), his place of birth, and his real age (Steve was actually seventeen when he got accepted for Project: Rebirth, with only Bucky the wiser). He actually forged his birth certificate. He was not proud of it, far from it, but it had to be done if he wanted to join the army. Not that it really helped.

Steve had also lied about his father's death. Joseph Rogers had indeed fought in the first World War, but he did not die then. He had been a good man before he left for the war, unfortunately he returned home too physically and emotionally damaged. He had been shot on the head and had indeed been exposed to some Mustard Gas, so it was a miracle he survived and managed to return home.

Joseph Rogers became prone to violent fits of anger, which ended with him becaming an abusive, violent drunk who died drowned in his own vomit when Steve was seven. He had thought then making his father more heroic would help him get recruited, it did not. But now, nearly seventy years later people never found out the truth.

At first everyone thought he had been an actor hired by the USO to portray Captain America on stage, in movies, and in the many social functions he had to appear. The public and the press had initially wondered why he was not fighting in the front lines with the other fit men.

He had actually received intensive acting coaching to make Captain America as believable as posible. While Steve Rogers could not string two coherent sentences when speaking to dames, Captain America could charm them into buying as many War bonds as they could. He had even been coached in how to deal with the press, but thankfully that was not something he had to do often.

Steve portrayed a confident and experienced soldier, a leader and a hero. He had not been one back then. Not until he went AWOL and rescued the 107th as well as the others from that HYDRA base. It was only then when he received full training in several disciplines, and the SSR discovered Steve was much more intelligent than they, and he, originally believed. To make things better his memory was photographic, and it had always been. Then let's not forget the fact he had kept the existence of the Wizarding World quiet since he learnt about it.

"Do you know if this room secure enough to talk freely?" He spared a look to the glass door, although he was sure there were now thingamagigs capable of spying on them without being obvious.

~The room is secure now Henry,~ Limbo told him, ~but it won't be for very long. Someone is making their way through the ventilation system as we speak. Tell your father to sit on the bed with you and tell you, or read you, a bedtime story.

~You will pretend to fall asleep, and not long later so should he. Your father has to be touching you, so I can induce a trance and bring your minds to the In Between Realm. Dinner is also coming, afterwards would be a good time, I will explain everything once you're both safe in the In Between.~

"For the time being. I knew they would spy on us, this not the first time I've come across SHIELD, so I fried their surveillance equipment when I switched places with Harry. But it won't be for long. One of the many agents SHIELD has is making his way here through the vents as we speak," he informed his father.

"Then we will have to wait until you are discharged," he said sparing a look to the two vents in the room. One did look big enough for a man to hide in them. He was also curious as to what kind of... technology SHIELD was using to spy on them. There had been some interesting things back in his time which Howard created.

"There's no need Steve. I have a way to establish a mental connection between us so we can speak freely, and with no one the wiser, but you need to be in contact with me to initiate the connection for the first time."

"A mental connection?" Steve looked interested. "How would that work?" He had met a set of American twin witches during the war, although he rarely got to work with them.

The twin witches shared such a connection, one was a Warder, the other a Curse Breaker and they had complemented each other. The O'Reilly twins had been incredibly good at dismantling HYDRA Wards.

Henry proceeded to tell his father what they needed to do; as well as the fact he would allow Harry to be in control for that part. It would do the small boy a world of good to experience what it was like to have a parent read to him. No one had done it before that he could remember.

Dinner arrived only a few minutes later, as well as the spy in the vent. As agreed little Harry was in charge, and he asked quite a few questions about Steve's life before the Super Soldier Serum. He was a curious little thing, who wanted to know his father, and Steve was quite willing to oblige the little guy as well as get to know him.

After Harry was done eating he was sent to shower and get ready for bed. He came out from the bathroom five minutes later dripping wet. He was not allowed longer showers at the Dursley, to use soap, or anything else but an extremely ratty towel to dry himself. Henry told him it was fine to take longer, use hot water, soap, and to wash thoroughly. The small boy was not fully convinced it was allowed, and so he did as he was used to.

Steve got a glimpse on just how awfully neglectful an emotionally abusive his son's guardians had been, and it made him seethe. He never killed if he could help it, but the Dursleys he would not have any regrets in removing the from the face of the Earth for what the did to his son. Unfortunately they were already dead.

His first lesson in parenting, and Harry's in being a normal boy with a caring father, came when Steve marched his small son back into the bathroom and ensured the boy took a proper shower WITH hot water, plenty of soap, and made good use of the utilitarian towels SHIELD provided. He even reminded his small son to wash behind his ears much like his own mother used to do to him when he was a kid.

With Harry squeaky clean, probably for the first time since James and his Mum died, Steve helped him towel dry his unruly mop of hair. Then both settled on the bed. It was a bit awkward at first, until they found a comfortable position. Steve on his back with Harry curled on his side.

Instead of a story, since there were no children books in the room, Steve chose to sing a few of the lullabies his mother used to sing to him as a child. They were in Irish Gaelic, his parents mother tongue, and which he still spoke fluently. Limbo took care of transferring the knowledge to Harry so the boy understood what his father was singing to him.

Steve had a very nice singing voice, although he had rarely allowed anyone to hear him sing. Initially it had been because his asthma did not leave him much breath to sing, later it simply was because he was shy, and his rather low self esteem. Bucky and his siblings had probably been the only ones to ever heard him sing besides his mother.

Little Harry fell asleep with a huge smile and tears in his eyes. He could not remember ever been sung to sleep, although his mother, and probably James had done it when he was a baby. Steve's own eyes were misty as well and he held his boy close, as he carded his fingers through the messy mop of hair. Soon, he too was asleep.

Chapter Text

Chapter 04

Limbo had not needed to induce a trance, the natural sleep worked even better for his purposes. It also worked on their favor, as the spy in the vents got bored of watching them sleep, and did not notice anything amiss.

The spy did get to be a member of the select group of people who had ever heard Rogers sing, which was embarrassing for the soldier. The human really had no reason to be, he was really good, although his voice was more suited to modern styles than those of his time.

Anyway, by using natural sleep instead of a trance, Steve Rogers obtained more time for his body to adapt to any physical changes, like muscle memory, resulting from his experience in the In Between.

There was also the actual rest the human would get, as he had certainly not been sleeping much since he was defrosted; and even before his last mission. The Captain had had much weighting on his mind, heart, and conscience.

There was too much grief, a whole lot of confusion, and more than a bit of anger at the hand Fate had dealt him as well. With time Henry would help his father deal with those problems and leave them at manageable levels.

When Henry was in the In Between it appeared like time on Earth stopped, until he went back, and resumed its pace. In reality it was simple Time Travel and the equivalent of an Anti-Aging Ward. Limbo knew the young wizard was intrigued, and wanted to know how it was done, but he was not inclined to tell Henry until he figured it out on his own.

He was a very smart wizard, and sooner or later Henry would figure it out. In the mean time, Limbo got a bit of amusement at his expense. The combination of the Time Travel and the Anti-Aging Ward was how Limbo would be able to transfer so much information into Steve's mind without overwhelming him.

The plan was to go slow with the transfers, allowing the older wizard to adapt, as well as assimilate the information. It would probably take at least a couple of years, not that either of them would notice it.

Spending time in the In Between would let Henry share the full story of his life with his father, and let them get to know each other. For his part, Steve would also get the oportunity to grieve all he lost privately, without SHIELD observing his every move and gesture.

Everyone, and everything, Steve had known was practically gone. Less than a handful of the people he had known were alive, but it was not the same. They were old, frail, at least three were in nursing homes suffering from alzheimers or dementia, and one was lost. Steve needed to come to terms with his loses in order to move on. But Limbo could provide him with all the time he needed.

Steve did not realize he had fallen asleep, until he woke up... on the hospital bed in the middle of an empty, and vaguely familiar train station. He blinked, rubbed his eyes to clear them, then blinked again. Then he pinched his arm and felt it. At that he heard a childish giggle, and a deeper chuckle.

"I did that too the first time I found myself here," Henry said still amused. "Of course you got lucky, you're on a bed, and fully clothed."

"You weren't?" Steve asked sitting up and finally seeing Harry, who looked the same as he had in the hospital room. A small clone of himself.

"No, I wasn't. In fact I was lying butt naked on the floor," the man standing besides Harry responded, while the little boy giggled at the words.

He was a short man, probably no more than five feet five inches tall, he was lean but looked quite fit. His hair was short and messy, he had the same emerald green eyes Harry had, but shaped differently, with long dark lashes. Those eyes watched him amused from behind thin metal framed glasses. There was a lightning bolt shaped scar on his forehead, and frankly he reminded him of someone.

"Charlie?" That was who the man reminded him of. Charlus Potter, albeit one who was probably in his early thirties.

"No," Henry responded, a soft smile on his face. "But his son, James, was my adoptive father. This is how I looked all my life, well until six months ago, nearly a clone of James Potter."

"He's me, and I'm him," Harry said moving closer to his father, who was still on the bed.

"I was you squirt, but now you have Steve to take care of you. So I know you won't be me," then he added softly as he patted the little one's head, "and I'm glad."

"Was your childhood that bad?" Steve asked sadly, and at the same time angry at those who hurt the both of them.

"At times it seemed so," he admitted, "but we can talk about that later." Hopefully the meaning of 'when Harry is asleep' would be clear. "Come, KC was kind enough to provide us with a replica of my home through gate six..."

"With gardens?" Harry asked excitedly, practically vibrating in place.

Harry liked the house Older-Him had lived at very much. He enjoyed playing and running in the gardens, as well as flying on the training broom Limbo provided for him. Harry only ever visited KC at night while he slept, if he needed help, or comfort from Henry. So he did not often get the chance to enjoy the gardens.

"Yes, this time he got the whole manor, quidditch pitch, and pond included," Henry told Kid-Harry.

"Yay!" Harry said and took off running towards the appointed gate. Too fast to hear the two adults chuckle.

"He seems more care free now," Steve commented as he began walking, falling into step with Henry.

"He is safe here, and knows it." Henry had a wistful smile on his face. "He trusts me because I was him, and he's willing to trust you. Believe me, it's great progress, I did not trust as easily when I was his age."

"What is this place?" Steve asked after a few moments to ponder the information about himself Henry had provided. A subject change seemed like a good idea, and he was curious.

"This is a replica of how London's King's Cross train station looked in 1991, the first time I went to Hogwarts." It had taken him two visits to figure that out, to Limbo's amusement.

"And is this also your mind?" He asked looking around, a bit amazed at the place.

"The full answer requires a bit of background information, but we'll get to that at the manor. To give you an idea though, part of it was indeed in my mind, or Harry's as was the case.

"The area were you awoke in is the entry point. We are now in another realm. It has no real name, but Harry and I call it the In Between, because it is actually the place between life and death."

Steve stopped short. "So we're dead?" He could not help sounding slightly alarmed.

"No we aren't, so don't worry Steve," Henry said a bit sheepish. "But normally those who visit this place, which is different for everyone else, are indeed, dead. I believe you met Albus Dumbledore during the war, yes?"

"Yeah, he was a powerful wizard, if a bit... odd." Frankly there had been no other way to describe Dumbledore and those blinding color combinations he preferred for his robes. They were never able to get him to blend in with the non magicals, although Charlus and Dorea did learn how. "He was leading the British Wizards against Grindelwald's forces."

"Well, he remained odd, and if anything, he got odder if you can believe that. He was the Headmaster at Hogwarts when James and my Mum were there, and later when I attended. He was also the leader of a faction against another Dark Lord.

"A Prophecy was made, pointing at me being the one to defeat said Dark Lord. James and my Mum were killed because of it, and I got the lightning bolt scar on my head, and became famous for surviving a Killing Curse when I was fifteen months old."

"You survived an Avada Kedavra too?" He asked shocked.

Steve never told anyone, and he had been lucky no one lived to tell the tale, as it was too... Creepy, and frankly no one would have believed him anyway. He was a muggle, or if Charlie had been right, a Squib. But Steve had been hit with a few Killing Curses during the war. They left him sore for days, and feeling like he had the worst case of the flu ever. But by the third time he did not even loose consciousness anymore.

Henry stared at his... father and gaped. "You were hit by an Avada Kedavra and lived? Why is there no record of it?"

~He has survived more than one Henry.~ Limbo chose to intervene in the conversation. ~As to why there are no records, well it was war. None of the casters survived, and there were no other witnesses.~

"Who was that?" Steve asked looking around for the one who spoke.

"But... but HOW?" Henry could not hide his shock.

~The Super Soldier Serum, and a slight mixup with the Vita-Rays he was irradiated with.~ Limbo responded. ~There will be full explanations later, once you both have enough information to understand them. As to who I am Captain Rogers, Harry and Henry call me Limbo.~_

"He's... a companion of sorts, a friend, better than a library, and a pain in the arse at times," Harry explained. "He's... tied to Harry and me, thanks to Dumbledore meddling in things he should not.

"Limbo is actually the one who's going to catch you up on all you missed Steve. He can transfer knowledge directly into your mind, and while here we have all the time in the world, so you can assimilate it. We can stay here the equivalent of years, and back there it would be less than the blink of an eye."

~It will be longer this time Henry,~ Limbo informed them. ~Some of the knowledge I plan on transferring comes with muscle memory, so Captain Rogers' body will need at least a couple of hours to assimilate it, and for the magic to adapt it.~

"I see," Steve said more than a bit curious as to what the strange entity planned on teaching him. "May I enquire what kind of knowledge requires muscle memory?"

~Certainly, there are now more fighting techniques available than there were in your time. A good number come from the orient, and are widely used. There are also a large number of weapons, and vehicles, which would benefit you to know how to operate.

~Specially if you continue your association with SHIELD. I'm sure this type of knowledge will come in handy on the long run. SHIELD will want to take advantage of having Captain America as an asset.~

Steve sighed at that. "Yeah, I got the feeling they will ask me something like that."

~I will make sure you have other options as well, in case you no longer want to keep fighting. You are a talented artist, and have a brilliant mind as well. There is more to you than just being Captain America.~ Limbo~ said the last in a gentle tone of voice. ~Remember, you owe them nothing Captain.~

~Do not let them tell you otherwise. In fact, it's the world who owes you for what you sacrificed to stop the Red Skull. Johann Schmidt and Arnim Zola were an even a worse threat to the world than Hitler ever was.~ He did not tell him Zola still was, even after death. Much as he wanted to warn him, Fate would nag at him for eternity if he disrupted her plans.

"Thanks Limbo, I'll keep that in mind." And he would, because Steve did feel he had given the world his all already. It did not mean he would not fight if he was needed, because he would, but he was not going to be guilt tripped into it.

"Going back to how are we not dead, and to make a long story short, and you'll get the full version later. Dumbledore meddled in things he should not, and inadvertently contrived to make me the first an only Master of Death.

"So this is my domain," Henry told his father, "and I can control who I bring here. I decide if whoever I bring can return to the Land of the Living, or who moves on to the Realm of the Dead. In your case, because of our relationship, you have a free pass. You can come and go from my domain at will."

They made the rest of the way to gate six in silence as Henry allowed Steve to assimilate the information he had provided. It also let him come to terms with the fact his father had survived several Avada Kedavras, and it was most likely because of the Super Soldier Serum. Which he inherited, and that would explain why he survived two of them... they had immunity.

His house had been Potter manor, it was a beautiful, stately, if rather big home. Too big for just one person, but he had come to like living there, with the many Potter elves, as well as the portraits of all of the Potters. Unfortunately they were not active in the replica KC created. He suspected Steve would have liked to speak with Charlus.

As they approached the manor, Harry zoomed past them on the broom Limbo had procured for him at break neck speed. Henry swore, they could not die while in the In Between, but they could get hurt. They had both broken bones while doing things they should not, or by not being careful. Henry actually cracked his skull when he fell while taking a shower not long ago.

Limbo made it that way so they would not forget their shared body was still vulnerable back in the Land of the Living. It was also why Limbo provided them with food and drinks. So that kid was going to break something if he was not careful.

Henry had been about to yell at the kid to slow down, but Steve beat him to it. In a way it was better, as Steve would be Harry's authority figure, and man did he have a tone of voice that demanded obedience. It was probably because he was in the army and had led men into battle.

Harry had come down looking scared, being yelled at by an adult (usually Vernon) ended with him getting a beating. He also knew better than to disobey. Henry said nothing, since he wanted to see what Steve would do. This was actually a good test on their father's parenting abilities.

Steve had lectured the kid about being careful, and not putting himself at risk. He then confiscated the broom, grounded him, and warned the child he would get a couple of swats if he did it again. Poor Harry had stared wide eyed, and even asked if he was going to be beaten, which in turn horrified Steve.

"I will never beat you Harry, I swear it," he said firmly while crouching before the small boy to look him in the eye. "The swats are to make a point, so you understand I am serious, but they are not meant to cause you harm beyond a stinging backside for a few minutes.

"My Ma used to give me a wallop with her sleeper when I misbehaved, or swore, and my best friend's mother had what we called the wooden hairbrush from hell," he smiled sadly at the memories his words brought. "Bucky, who was my best friend, and I were always getting into trouble, and Mrs Barnes was an expert with the thing.

"Mrs Barnes loved her son and cared about me, she did not want to hurt us, and the same with my Ma. They would leave us with a sore behind so we learned the lesson, but never with bruises. They both only wanted us to be careful, to be polite, and be good men, which is the same thing I want for you.

"Frankly, you scared me with the way you were flying kid. I thought you were going to hurt yourself, and I don't want you to get hurt. Do you understand?" He said and Harry nodded. "I'd like to hear you say it aloud Harry."

"I understand Steve," Harry said still wide eyed; and he actually did.

The Dursley tended to punish him just because they wanted to, as there usually was no reason for it. He was sure they liked hurting him, and the same with the foster parents he had been left with.

But Steve... His Dad had bothered to tell him what he did wrong, and why it was wrong. No one ever cared if he got hurt, besides Henry that is, but they were sharing the same body, so he did not count.

"Good, now come," Steve said standing and picking up the small boy. Harry had squeaked surprised, but wrapped his legs around his waist and his skinny arms around his neck. "Henry was about to show me the manor, so you can tell me what things and rooms you like best." Steve signalled for Henry to lead the way.

Henry had a soft pleased smile on his face. The way Steve handled his younger self was better than expected, although he had been worried for a bit when he mentioned the swats. The explanation put everything into perspective, and he understood it was the way Steve was raised, and the way things were done in the 1920s.

They had a leisure tour of the manor's grounds, including the quidditch pitch, the orchards, the gardens, and the pond. Then the trio went inside the manor, where Henry told Steve to choose a room from the many available, and not to worry about clothes... Or anything really, Limbo would provide him with whatever he needed.