AU 16 years ago the Potters' faked their sons death, hiding him at an orphanage in France to save him from the prophecy. But when the effects of a thirty year war prove too much for the world, the ...
It was an impossible predicament, a position no parent should ever have to face.
The news had come in the form of a seemingly gentle old man, visiting the couple as their friend and long time mentor. Blue eyes sparkled behind half moon spectacles as he cooed to their year old son, but pity was thinly veiled beneath.
Albus had spared them nothing, the cold awful truth falling hard on disbelieving ears. He reminded them of the present standing against Dark, of the Lights diminishing hope to triumph. He told them of the prophecy and of the spy. He told them that it could all come to nothing, that it may not concern Harry in the slightest. He told them what they must do; go into hiding, cease all contacts to the outside world. Sirius would proudly be their keeper, he had advised. He himself would cast the Fidelius charm.
And they had, at least at first, graciously obeyed these instructions.
But for all they tried Lily and James could not lock themselves into that cage, could not damn themselves to such a condemned life. They could not sit back waiting for the inevitable to strike, dreading the time when they would be finally bested. They deserved better than that. Harry deserved better.
It had taken time - borrowed time, time they did not have - but they had had to plan carefully. There could be no room for mistakes.
Sirius, then an Auror in training, had found a dead baby quite similar to Harry, though appearances mattered little. The poor little body would be in shreds when they were done. Unrecognisable, anonymous. A desperate ploy, concocted by more desperate minds.
The three of them - a mother, a father and a godfather - bid the green eyed child a sorrowful goodbye. Sirius could not bear to watch, leaving the couple with their son after few short minutes had passed. Alone but for Harry, Lily and James had clung to each other, the child tucked securely between them. Lily kissed his forehead, James caressed his hair. Too soon the bittersweet farewell was over.
They would see him once more, of that they were sure and the young parents swore it then and there. Years, perhaps decades into the future, but they would meet their first born again.
At that point it wasn't too late, they could still have backed out and lived on together as they had the months after Albus' visit. But the family held their heads high, thoughts of the future driving any doubt from their minds.
They were doing the right thing, the best thing for the child.
They would cheat destiny and Harry would live on, safe and happy. The plan would succeed.
Lily had taken him then, apparating away into the dark night. Somewhere secret, somewhere somewhat safe. No-one would ever know.
James destroyed the house; paintings torn, furniture crumbled, curtains on fire. He ripped the floor and broke the walls. Godric's Hollow looked like a bomb had hit it.
Sirius maimed the dead body. He started with Crucio, Diffindo, Sectusempra, Engorgio then Incendio. Blood splattered, dribbled and ran. The child's body fell to pieces on the floor, limbs astray, insides thrown here and there. It decomposed before his eyes, the stench unbearable, the sight horrific.
When the mother returned it was her husband who cast the next spell and in one word all knowledge of their sons whereabouts dispersed. "Obliviate."
The three friends stood silent for a moment, a solemn triangle in the ruined living room. Self-loathing consumed, tragic and shattered. Their thoughts focused on one specific ideal - that they would see their plan out to the end.
As one they each raised their wand to the left. Lily to James, James to Sirius, Sirius to Lily. As one they furrowed brows, the pre-designed spells tilting on the tips of their tongues. As one they counted down.
Three. Two. One.
And as one they fell to another's curse.
The wards broke, three screams of intense agony echoed through the house, a mimicked skull and snake symbol rose high into the cool night air, an alarm bell at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry woke the Headmaster from a heavy slumber. In a small orphanage buried deep within the grubbiest slums of northern France, the green eyed child cried for parents that would never come.
Harry James Potter was murdered by Deatheaters, September 8th 1981.
For the next sixteen years the true events of that evening would not be uttered. Lord Voldemort would rise beyond levels anyone could have thought possible, bringing total devastation upon the world. Lives would be stolen, families destroyed, morality forgotten, justice crushed.
Destiny shined away, straying from the course of 'may have been'.
But fate cannot be forgotten. Out of sight is out of mind, but nothing can remain unseen, unnoticed forever. 'Lost' is but a temporary word, a word easily changed, a word easily fixed. And the name of Harry Potter would rise again, to conquer that which he was born to do.