I can't believe my life has come down to this. Once again, Harry was back at the Dursley's house. Just lying in bed, staring at the ceiling, and trying to figure out his life. I put my friends in danger and got Sirius killed by my stupidity. I suppose I deserve to be stuck back here again.
He was angry. Not quite as angry as he had been in Dumbledore’s office maybe, but still so angry that he was looking for some kind of solution. He figured there had to be something that he could do. He might not be able to bring Sirius back, but there sure as hell had to be some way to protect his friends. He'd put them into enough danger over the years, and leading them into the Department of Mysteries was the final straw. He just couldn't afford to make another mistake as deadly as that one.
Harry may have been guilt ridden, but he wasn't quite as foolish as everyone seemed to think. He knew he'd made plenty of mistakes, but he'd done a lot of thinking over the last couple of weeks. He'd finally come to the conclusion that he'd played a major role in that disastrous rescue mission, but the ultimate responsibility lay with Voldemort.
Now that the prophecy had been revealed to him, Harry was finally realizing just how personal things really were between him and Voldemort. Voldemort had killed his parents, Cedric and now Sirius. He'd tried to kill Arthur Weasley as well this past year. Voldemort was slowly trying to take everything away from Harry, and Harry was well and truly furious at this point.
One of the conclusions he'd come to was that not only had Voldemort taken away his childhood, he'd already pretty much taken away his teenage years as well. Normal teenagers should be dealing with overprotective parents, worrying about boyfriends and girlfriends, focusing on studies and spending time with friends. They shouldn't be dealing with psychotic Death Eaters and their madman of a leader.
Harry realized that it was time for some major changes in his life. He was getting damn tired of being ruled by everyone else. Because of Voldemort, he was forced to live with the Dursleys, he constantly had to watch his back, and he and his friends were always in imminent danger.
As he thought about it, he realized that he was just as much ruled by the "light" side and the rest of the Wizarding world. Over the years, he had been letting the Golden Boy image rule him, and there were plenty of expectations that he knew he was supposed to live up to.
He was more than willing, at this point, to take on the responsibility that he would have to be the one to destroy Voldemort somehow. However, he wasn't willing to do it under the guise of the Golden Boy image any longer. If he was going to have to take on Voldemort, he was going to do it on his terms—not on Voldemort's terms or anyone else's.
Harry was ready for some teenage rebellion.
Unfortunately, he was sure that still left him with people from the Order watching him. The question was how to get to London without letting them realize. He'd also have to get to Gringott's for some money before he could head out to Muggle London. He finally decided to take his chances with his invisibility cloak and just hope that Moody wasn't one of the ones watching him that day.
It seemed that luck was with him for a change, and the invisibility cloak was a success. He'd managed to get away from the house, catch a bus to London and even managed to get to Gringotts and back out of the Leaky Cauldron without anyone recognizing him. Now he was on his own with a pocketful of money, with only the decision left of where to start spending it.
He decided to just start walking and let his feet lead the way. Eventually, he came across a store that had several teenagers hanging out around the entrance. Seems like a good place to start, he thought to himself with a wry grin.
Upon entering, it was immediately clear that he would be able to obtain an entirely new image in this store. The clothing was definitely not what he was used to seeing. Glancing around, there were plenty of others his age loitering around the store. Obviously it was a popular place. He may have been ready for a new image, but he also recognized that he would need some help. Seeing a group of teenagers eyeing him curiously, he decided to take the initiative and approach them for some help.
"Hey, I was wondering if you might be able to help me out. I'm looking for a new image." He looked down at himself with a wry look. He still wore a lot of Dudley's hand-me-downs and the glasses that he was so familiar with were still the same old pair he'd always worn. "Obviously this old image really leaves a lot of room for improvement."
The group of teenagers he'd approached looked at him appraisingly. Two girls and one guy and they seemed to come to the conclusion that he had potential. They looked at each other momentarily before one of them spoke.
"Hi, I'm Alyssa" one of the girls said, "and these are my friends Kathrine and Sam. We're bored, so we could probably help you out. Looks like an interesting challenge," she said with a grin.
"My name's Harry. Yeah, you could say this look," waving his hand at himself, "is definitely one that needs to go," he stated with a grin of his own.
And with that, the four got shopping. He was hustled off to a dressing room and all three of his new associates set about creating a new look.
Not only did he have a new image, but he'd learned a lot about sex as well. When he'd mentioned that he was a virgin, his newest friends took up that challenge as well. Harry knew that he could die at anytime. He'd accepted that fact. On the other hand, he didn't plan on dying still a virgin. That was one problem that had undeniably been solved now. His acquaintances had taught him far more than fashion. He had also learned that he was definitely bi-sexual.
It was amazing to Harry how his self confidence had sky rocketed over the last couple of weeks. He knew it was partially because of the new mind set he had decided upon at the beginning of the summer. But the new image had also given him far more than he'd bargained for.
By the end of that first day out in London, he had looked completely different. He wasn't the clean cut Golden Boy any longer. He was wearing black, low cut leather trousers and a tight black t-shirt. The black ankle boots had small silver fastenings. He had got contacts and was rid of the heavy glasses on his face. That fact alone changed his appearance drastically. Add the new diamond stud in his ear, and he changed from good to bad—and he loved it!
Somehow his new companions had even talked him into going into a tattoo parlour. In recognition of his more Slytherin side, he'd decided to get a tattoo across his lower back. He wasn't sure exactly why, but he'd decided on the pattern of two snakes intertwined—one black and one silver.
All three of his companions had decided he was extremely sexy with his new style and it had paid off in ways that Harry had not originally planned on. Two weeks later, he had far more sexual experience than he had ever expected to have. Now, he was feeling a confidence in himself that he loved.
Unfortunately, he was also still stuck at the Dursleys. He felt far more secure in himself, but he still had no idea what to do about Voldemort. He'd already done every bit of summer homework he had, despite his extracurricular activities outside the house. He knew he needed to gain as much knowledge as he could if he was to ever defeat Voldemort. Sexy new image or not, knowledge was power.
The invisibility cloak was allowing him to get out of the house unseen by his watchers, but there was no way he'd be able to go shopping in Diagon Alley, and he knew it. He needed knowledge and he needed books.
He sighed. For the time being, he was just going to be stuck with reading through the school books that he had on hand. Besides, he knew that he'd slacked off for far too long. He went back and started reading.