Here is the first chapter of the new and improved Discovery. Larger and more detailed chapters will follow. Large parts of the original story will be present in this one, but there will be large changes, so even those that have read Discovery will get a few surprises.
Harry was mesmerized at the sight before him. It was difficult to see the TV through the small grate on the door to the cupboard under the stairs he was living in, but the sight before him made him forget the uncomfortable position he was in.
His cousin Dudley, who resembled a round ball more than the eight year old boy he was, had started to watch a new cartoon, something called Naruto. It was one of those new Japanese cartoons that were all the rage at that time, and of course, Dudley nagged his family to let him watch it, despite the fact that his father Vernon didn't like anything strange or foreign.
The sight of the show and the characters it portrayed stayed within Harry's mind from the moment he laid eyes on him. There was something in it that drew his attention, and he often dreamed about the world it showed, and what his life would be like if he lived there, instead of in a dirty old cupboard under the stairs with people who could care less if he died that very moment.
Unfortunately for Harry, two weeks later, Dudley grew bored with the show and stopped watching it. For Harry, it felt like he had torn his heart out and stomped it into the ground. For the first time in his young life, Harry felt pure hatred in his heart, and the desire to kill his cousin washed over him like a foul tide.
The moment passed quickly, and Harry's emotions shifted to depression. This was just one more thing his so-called family took away from him.
He had lived with the Dursley family for almost seven years now, and in that time, he had known only hate and scorn from them.
He was forced to do the bulk of the chores around the house, even though a small, underfed boy like him could hardly do half of them, and even then, he could only do a handful of them well, which earned him a heap of punishment and belittlement.
The most used punishment was depriving him of food, which was quite cruel considering he got very little of it to begin with. And now, he was deprived of yet another thing he grew to like, just like two months ago when he found five old Lego blocks. He couldn't really build anything with them, since he didn't have enough, but just putting them together and taking them apart was enough for him.
When his cousin found them, he thought it would be a great idea to smash the blocks to bits while two of his friends held Harry pinned to the ground.
Feeling really down, Harry was sitting absently in class, paying the teacher only the faintest amount of attention when he heard the two boys behind him whisper to each other.
"Did you catch the new Naruto episode? That was some fight, huh?" Harry's eyes widened when he heard the name of the show that brought some joy in his miserable life.
"Yeah. I can't wait to see how it ends." The other boy sighed.
"You should go and buy the comic, then, Jerry. They're a lot further. You can get them at that comic store next block." The first boy grinned lightly.
"Thanks, Matt. I'll stop by there after school." Jerry replied.
'There are comics about Naruto?' Harry frowned before his eyes shined with an idea. 'I can read about it, and no one will ever know.'
He carefully scrounged up every loose coin he had managed to stash away behind a loose board on the far end of the cupboard where only he could reach and when he tallied it up, it came at a little over two pounds. Moving carefully as to stop the mass of coins from jingling, he reached the comics store his classmates had mentioned and walked in, quickly looking for the Naruto comics.
As he scanned the titles, his eyes caught the sight of a fan info booklet. He picked it up and saw it offered more detailed information about the Naruto world.
"Hi there. Can I help you?" He almost jumped out of his skin when the store owner approached him.
Gerald Stevens had spent over fifteen years as owner of this store, and in that time, he had seen every type of customer, and could sort them at a glance, which helped him greatly when dealing with shoplifters and rowdy customers.
So, when he saw the small child with the ratty clothes that was looking all over the store like he was scared of something, he immediately thought 'Great, another shoplifting brat.'
However, when the boy turned to face him, and he took a look at the boy's vibrant green eyes, he could tell that the boy had no intention of stealing anything.
"How much is this, sir?" He asked timidly.
"Three fifty, kid. It says so right there." He pointed to the price tag on the booklet.
"I only have two." Gerald could feel the anguish contained in those words as he watched the child's eyes dim to a dull, lifeless green. Harry put the booklet back and turned to leave, shoulders slumped and head hung low.
"Wait. Tell you what, kid. I have a number of defective comics in the back. You can have one of them for two pounds."
Gerald smiled as the boy perked up immediately and thanked him over ten times before he rushed away from the store. For once in his life, he was happy he had misjudged a customer.
Harry slowed down as he approached his home at number four, Privet Drive. He felt the neatness of the house was fake and forced. There was no life in it, just a feeling of control.
His relatives were busy watching TV, and didn't even bother to turn towards him as he slipped into the cupboard, knowing they wouldn't bother him until it was time for him to cook them dinner.
Despite his young age, he showed both great skill and more importantly, passion for cooking, making even the simplest dishes taste delicious. He would have enjoyed it more, of course if he was actually allowed to eat any of it.
He began reading the book, getting immersed into its pages within seconds. The first part detailed some information about some of the characters and the world itself. He was just about to start the part about the techniques that were used in the show when he heard the floor creak in protest as his uncle's heavy form stood up from his chair.
Hiding the book in his secret spot, Harry walked in and went to prepare dinner. Unlike his relatives, who got enough food to feed six men, he got only two pieces of bread and a glass of water.
Once back in his cupboard, he returned to his book, finally reading the descriptions on a few of the techniques used in the show, and more importantly, how they were performed.
Now, Harry knew that it wasn't real, but he saw no harm in pretending it was, so slowly, he put his hands in the basic hand sign used to gather energy, and focused with all his will on drawing out the power the show called chakra.
Within his body, his magical core felt the pull, and for a moment, the energy swirled in confusion, not recognizing the method Harry used to draw upon it. This reluctance lasted only for a moment, though. Magic existed to serve its wielders, and had an infinite ability to adapt. So, when Harry focused his will, thinking of chakra, his magic complied and streamed through his body.
Harry was starting to feel a bit silly, when suddenly, energy rushed through his body, filling him with a sensation the regularly underfed boy had never felt during his life with the Dursleys. The constant fatigue that was the result of back-breaking labor and lack of proper meals suddenly vanished as if it wasn't even there.
The sensation passed after a few moments, but Harry still felt better now that his magic was actively flowing through his body.
'I can use chakra?' He did not dare voice the thought out loud for fear of being overheard.
He began flipping the book's pages quickly, scanning the names and types of techniques it described with frantic eagerness. The possibilities was vast, but three things put a damper on his eagerness.
First, he had no idea how much chakra he had, and the book said that chakra exhaustion was often lethal. Second, he had no doubt that his chakra control was also very poor, which meant that he would probably waste most of his energy, and thirdly, was his lack of skill and physical conditioning.
In the show, the ninjas attended the Academy for years before they were even considered for graduation. He had no illusions that this would be in any way easy.
Going to sleep, he made his plans for the next day. The moment he had more free time, he would find a secret spot to train, and he would test his limits.
His moment of freedom came the following afternoon, as his aunt shooed both him and his cousin outside right after lunch.
After running away from Dudley and his gang to the nearby park, Harry noticed a more secluded area of the park that was a bit out of the way from the path.
A large hedge wall stretched on one side, while several slightly overgrown bushes circled a lone old oak tree.
Thanks to his small size, Harry managed to locate a path between two rose bushes, and found himself perfectly hidden from prying eyes.
First, he sat down and closed his eyes, trying to get a feel for the energy inside him and how it moved.
The power moving through him was constantly in motion, and was present in every single part of his body, which made it difficult to control.
It took him a while before he managed to consciously direct the flow, moving it to his hands, which made them tingle, or to the muscles on his arms or legs, which made them feel stronger.
Finally, having grasped how to move the energy, even if it took him a few seconds to direct it properly, he felt it was time for a real test.
He put his hands in the basic sign and directed his chakra towards his feet, or more precisely, to the soles of his shoes.
'This is harder then I thought.' His face scrunched up in focus as the energy resisted his commands, but slowly, he succeeded in accomplishing his task, creating a faint blue glow around his legs.
Moving slowly as to not to break his concentration, he approached the oak tree and put his foot against the bark, only to cause it to crack underneath it.
'Damn, I'm using too much.' He focused again, reducing the amount of energy. A minute later, he tried again, but his foot just slipped off without getting any traction.
He spent two hours playing with the amount of power he was using, and finally managed to get the right amount for his foot to stick to the bark without damaging it.
To his surprise, he could still feel a great amount of power within him, but his body felt dead tired from having to channel it constantly for the last couple of hours.
'So, I need to get in better shape if I want to be able to use larger amounts of chakra, huh?' He thought, feeling slightly grateful to his relatives for all the work they were forcing him to do.
If it wasn't for all the chores and the frequent runs thanks to his cousin's favorite game called Harry Hunting, he doubted he would have been able to last even that long.
He knew one thing, though. If he wanted to get better, he had to get more food then he was getting right now. It was a bit of a vicious circle. He had to get more food to become a better ninja, but to get more food; he had to be a better ninja.
Giving a sad smile to the irony of it all, he started to prepare dinner.
'If I could get even a quarter of what Dudley is getting, I'd have no trouble keeping myself strong.' He glanced sadly at the massive amount of food sitting before his cousin. It didn't look like he needed it, in fact Harry often said to himself that Dudley could survive for several weeks on his body fat alone.
As he sat on the table, munching several chips and a small, slightly burnt sausage, he got an idea.
He immediately looked through the techniques his book had, and quickly found the solution to his food problem.
The False Surroundings technique was a genjutsu, or an illusion that covered an area or object in a false image that affected everyone in the area of effect of the illusion. It could be used to trick your victim into walking in circles, for example, or more importantly to him, it could be used to disguise an object as something else. It was a simple, D-rank illusion that was easy to see through, at least for trained ninja.
Harry thought that if he could cloak his dish with a simple illusion, he could get himself more food without making his relatives suspicious.
Of course, there were several problems with his plan. First of all, he had no idea how to direct his chakra to cloak the target in mind, or how to cause the desired effect. On top of it, genjutsu required precise chakra control, which he didn't have.
Faced with these problems, he steeled his resolve and prepared himself to tackle them one at a time.
For the next two weeks, he spent every free moment he had in his secret training spot, working on tree walking or leaf balancing, where he put a leaf to his forehead and kept it there with his chakra.
After these two weeks, he was finally able to walk up the tree as if it was the ground, and even hang upside down the branches without falling off.
Determining his control sufficient for the moment, he moved on the three basic techniques every ninja had to know, the Transformation, the Clone and the Replacement technique.
The transformation was basically coating your body with a thin layer of chakra and forming it into the shape he needed.
Experiments with this technique greatly helped his ability to visualize the object that he wanted to change into, and after a while, his transformations looked pretty good, at least as much as he could tell from looking at the small puddle that was formed near the hedge fence of his training spot.
The clone technique was considered the most basic illusion there was, and as such, greatly helped him in figuring out how to project his energy outside his body.
The replacement, on the other hand, was deceptively simple, and unlike the other two, greatly depended on physical ability. After slamming himself into the oak tree at great speed, he decided to work on this particular technique after he had trained up a bit.
Now came the hard part. Training for the False Surroundings technique.
The easiest form of the technique was spreading it as a large cloud over an area, confusing everyone that walked into it.
It took Harry over three weeks to learn how to use it to his satisfaction, and in that time, he had caused a great deal of chaos in the park. Joggers and people passing through often found themselves going in circles, or ending up in completely different areas of the park then they intended, and he had caused a lot of trouble for a few young gentlemen when he had masked the signs on the park's restrooms with the opposite marking, leading the two men right into the ladies restroom after two women had walked in.
After that little prank, he decided his control of the technique was sufficient, and prepared himself to use it for what he intended it in the first place.
That day, he made a little extra food, and when his relatives weren't paying any attention to him, he weaved the well practiced hand signs and whispered "Ninpou: False Surroundings."
He felt the technique form in the room, and after splitting the food to the plates of his relatives, put a healthy portion of mashed potatoes on his plate as well as a small pork chop and covered it all in thick gravy.
He sat down, and to his immense pleasure, his relatives didn't comment on the contents of his plate, their eyes only seeing a scoop of potatoes and a single bone with a few shreds of meat on it.
Now that his food trouble was over, he could finally begin an exercise regiment that would help strengthen his body but not damage his growth. He had consulted with the school nurse about the subject, and she was more then happy to give him all sorts of advice and all on a level a young boy like him could understand.
After seven years of hell, Harry Potter's life was slowly starting to improve, and it was all thanks to a simple TV show.