Harry's past finally catchs up with him...
A/N: Ah, who comes up from Harry's past...?
Chapter 9: When the Past Comes Along
Daniel Potter was, all things considered, a happy, normal eleven-year-old boy. He had two loving parents, Harry and Amanda Potter, and a younger sister, Sarah Potter.
However, from time to time, he often felt something... odd around him.
One time, when he was nine, a bully was chasing him in a secluded section of the local park. After being cornered, Dan put up his hands in self-defense, and looking up to see the bully just frozen in place, not even moving (or at least as far as Dan could tell). Panicked, Dan ran straight back home and didn't say a word about it, and Dan almost never saw that bully ever since.
Today was a bright sunny Sunday, and the previous day, May 22, 2016, was his eleventh birthday, which included a great birthday party and a gathering of friends and family. Already up, Dan fixed himself some breakfast and walked outside to get the Sunday paper.
After picking it up, Dan was about to go back inside when he noticed something distinctly out of place.
Underneath the paper was a small green envelope.
'That's odd,' Dan thought. 'There's no mail on Sunday. Besides, who would have sent a letter like /this/?"
It had no return address, but on the back was a seal with a lion, badger, eagle and snake around a letter "H." On the front it was addressed to a "Mr. D. Potter," right at his address.
Curiosity getting the better of him, Dan deposited the morning paper in the kitchen and rushed back up to his room.
With trembling fingers, Dan slowly opened the envelope and read something which would change his life forever.
The letter read that he had been accepted to a "Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry," located somewhere in the United Kingdom. The Headmistress someone named Professor Minerva McGonagall, and the letter was signed by a Deputy Headmaster named Professor Severus Snape.
Dan could only stare at the letter for several minutes before he noticed a small note which was attached.
It read that even though he lived in the United States, his name had somehow come up on the magical register which Hogwarts used to seek out magical children. Since he was "Muggle-born" (a Muggle being a person who had no magic), a professor would come over to explain things about the school, should he accept.
Just then, there was knocking on his closed bedroom door.
"Dan? Are you in there?" his father's voice asked.
"Good morning, Dad," he said as he stuffed the envelope and its contents away just before the door opened and his father came into the room, fully dressed.
"Did you already get the paper?" Harry asked his son.
"Yeah, it's in the kitchen," Dan said, hugging his father good morning.
"How considerate of you, thanks," Harry said with a smile as he ruffled his son's hair (which was tame, like his mother's).
After accepting his dad's offer to go with him to get some bagels for their family's brunch, the letter was quite forgotten.
It was only around three in the afternoon when Dan remembered the letter. Getting it out, he ran to his mother to show it to her.
Amanda was watching Harry and Sarah play out in the backyard when his son came up to her and showed her the letter. "What's this?" she asked.
"I think you might want to see for yourself," Dan said, not knowing what to say.
Five minutes later, Harry and Sarah heard Amanda tapping on the window, gesturing for them to come in. Father and daughter went back in, feeling uneasy and curious respectively.
As they went back inside, they could hear Dan and his mother talking...
"Mom, what do you think about all this? Magic being real?"
"I don't know, Dan, I mean, this looks kind of silly..."
"Okay, so maybe 'Hogwarts' is a strange name..."
Harry stopped dead in his tracks. 'This is not happening. This is not happening!'
Amanda showed Harry the letter. "Dear, what do you think of this? And according to this note which was attached, someone is coming to explain this to us at any minute!"
"What!?" Harry yelped, seeing the note for himself.
"But who... how..."
Just then, the doorbell chimed. Telling his family to stay in the kitchen, he went over to answer the door.
He opened it to see a face that looked familiar, and after a moment, he recognized who it was. At the same time, he was recognized as well.
Obviously, Neville Longbottom, Professor of Herbology at Hogwarts, was not expecting to see Harry Potter behind the door of a home where a supposed Muggle-born young wizard lived.
After a moment in which both men calmed down, Harry invited his old friend in, starting to sweat bullets under his shirt.
"Um... Amanda? Dan? Sarah? May I introduce an old classmate of mine, whom I just found out was the professor from the school?"
Amanda crossed her arms and gave Harry a piercing look which he would never forget as long as he lived.
"Harry, what's going on here?"
With a gulp, Harry explained, "Um, it's a long story, Amanda... remember how I told you long ago how I left a certain school and community after nearly everyone betrayed me...?"
About an hour later, Harry finished explaining to his family about his past, leaving three stunned family members sitting around the table with a worried Neville on the side. The Dursleys, Voldemort, Hogwarts, Azkaban... once Harry started, it came out easier than he thought it would be at first.
Amanda was torn. While part of her was angry that Harry would keep all this information secret from her, part of her could understand why he would want to. Even though she knew he gave a censored and abridged version of what happened (because both children were present), she had a feeling that his worse experiences were much more horrible than he explained them as.
While Dan felt sorry for his father, he was also excited about the idea of having magic. Sarah couldn't understand the concept of magic as well as everyone else could, but felt so upset that her father had gone through such horrible things that when he finished, she came over and hugged him.
Neville felt out of place as he watched his old classmate explain all of this to his unsuspecting family, but he could see how deep down, Harry was probably still as angry and bitter as he was when he left the wizarding world, even though it didn't show.
As Harry finished his explanation, he turned to Neville. "So, Neville... why did Dan get a Hogwarts acceptance letter when he's here in America and not back over in England?"
Neville shrugged. "Well, first of all, it's been a little while since the wards you put on this house were renewed. As for your son's name... I'm guessing that his name somehow listed down because you attended. It tends to happen. I thought it couldn't be you, since 'Potter' is such a common name and everyone - well..."
"...They think you're dead."
An awkward silence followed this. "Come again?"
"Remember that day when you were fleeing from the Aurors in your griffin form?"
"Yes... they were chasing me, they caught me, and I utilized a lot of magic to Apparate back over to America, where I set up a home for myself."
"I bet you didn't know that you left behind quite a crater from the resulting explosion. Now, after how Wormtail faked his own death, Dumbledore was hesitant to announce someone's death when their body couldn't be found... but the explosion left this sticky red stuff all over the trees that looked like blood. All the magical tests they performed on the samples of the stuff collected said it was yours."
Harry sat there, stunned. "I honestly have no idea how that happened."
"Well, anyway, I came here thinking that a 'Mr. Daniel Potter' was a Muggle-born student, so I see an explanation is unnecessary..."
"So can I go Dad?" Dan asked eagerly, practically bouncing in his seat.
Harry was about to shout a resounding "NO!" but caught himself just in time. Technically, Harry could stop Dan from going since he was Dan's father... but memories of the Dursleys came back to mind, overwhelming him. Harry Potter, pull a Dursley? No way would that ever happen.
Come on, a small voice in his head said. What's the worst that could happen?
'Famous last words.'
Thinking carefully, Harry said, "Dan... I know that overall, Hogwarts is a nice school for magic... but it's not the only one in the world, you know. There are probably a few here in the States or up in Canada which you could go to. You know, something closer to home?"
"Yeah, that is a good point," Dan said thoughtfully, "But I'd still like to go."
"Dad, is this because of what happened to you and you don't want me to go because you're afraid the same thing will happen to me?"
Hey, are those crickets I hear in the background?
Harry could only put his head in his hands before letting out a deep sigh.
"That's precisely it. Because I don't trust you in the wizarding world. Oh sure, there are a few good people in it -" here he gestured towards Neville, "- but otherwise..."
"Well, as long as he's safe, then I don't mind him going," Amanda said, speaking for the first time after considering everything.
"So is it alright with you, Dad?" Dan said eagerly, his eyes practically aglow. "Can I go to Hogwarts?"
Harry looked down at the tabletop, thinking hard. On one hand, he couldn't trust that same community which betrayed them, especially with his own son... on the other hand, his Gryffindor nobility was reminding him of how hypocritical it would be if he tried to forbid his own son from going.
There was only one thing he could do.
Dan jerked as though he'd been electrocuted, and then wore a face of despair.
Just then Harry elaborated, "No, it's not alright with me... however, if you truly want to go... then I won't stop you."
Dan's face instantly switched to happiness as he rushed out of his chair and rushed to his father, hugging and thanking him profusely.
"You're welcome," Harry muttered flatly, feeling as though he just made one of the worst decisions of his life.
"I can't wait to go to Hogwarts in a few years!" Sarah squealed with much delight.
'And I thought I'd first get a headache from her when she started taking an interest in boys...' Harry thought.
Checking his watch, Neville added, "Um, I should get going. Maybe I'll see you some other time."
Harry quietly muttered a good-bye while the rest of his family bade him farewell more cheerfully.
Neville was nearly out the door when Harry remembered something and rushed over.
"Neville," he asked, "Will you please keep an eye out for Dan?"
"Of course I will," Neville said with a small smile. "I know you'd do the same for any of my kids. Besides, don't worry, things are much different these days."
Harry felt a little flattered by Neville's open trust in him before the last statement left him a little confused. "Why, what's happened that's made things so different?"
(End of Chapter 9.)
A/N: Well, I hope this went well...
Next chapter is where we finally find out what everyone else was doing while they thought Harry was "dead"... -//Quillian
/EXTRA!/ Sorry I forgot to include a timeline of events...
1998 - Harry starts college
1999 - Harry meets Amanda
2002 - Harry and Amanda graduate from college
2003 - Harry marries Amanda
2005 - Daniel Potter is born
2008 - Sarah Potter is born
2012 - Hedwig passes away
2016 - Dan gets his Hogwarts letter