Gifts of the Harrygi

Harry at Rock Bottom

"EXPECTO PATRONUM!" came Sirius's loud shout, followed by the blast from his wand. It happened so fast that Harry couldn't quite make out exactly what Patronus his godfather had summoned, although it looked something like a cross between a wolf and a buck. Regardless of its actual shape, though, it proved effective, as the Dementors and wizards were sent scattering. "Harry, let's move," Sirius seized his hand and started running in the opposite direction, "We've got about five minutes at most..."

"We're got to get Mr. Weasley out too; they have him in here..." Harry pleaded.

"I'd love too, Harry, but we don't have time now. I promise I'll come back for him after we get you out of here...duck," Sirius pushed him down as hexes started flying at them, "Let's get your wand first."

"Do you have any idea where you're going, Sirius?" Harry had to ask, jerking sideways as a spell zipped dangerously close to his face.

"I do; I got a good look around when I first escaped-watch it," Sirius pulled him close as a half dozen Dementors glided straight at them. "Lumos totalus!" he bellowed, and seconds later another blinding blast of light completely inundated the prison, triggering dozens of agonized Dementor shrieks all around them. His eyes squinted shut, Harry felt himself being pulled sideways. A door opened in front of him and then slammed shut behind them. "Colloportus!" Sirius bellowed as Harry's vision started returning, followed by a squelching noise as the door magically sealed behind them. "That should hold them for some time," Sirius murmured, "OK, Harry, let's get your wand."

"Um..." Harry's brow furled. For seemingly hundreds of wands were stacked on shelves as far as the eye could see. "I don't think we'll have time, Sirius..."

There came an angry pounding on the door behind them. "Quick, Harry, summon it; that's not banned here," Sirius impatiently urged him.

"OK, uh...accio wand," Harry hesitantly shouted. It was to his surprise and delight that a long thin object came zipping like a rocket up one of the rows and into his hand. "Wow, that was easy," he exclaimed, "Too easy...?"

"Never mind, Harry, let's get..."

"CONFRINGO!" came Swims's shout on the other side of the door. Moments later, it exploded open...and one of the chunks hit Sirius clean in the head before he could turn. "Sirius! No, come on, stay with me here!" Harry shook his godfather as he slumped to the floor, unconscious. "What to do, what to do!?" he mumbled out loud.

"Die, Potter, die," Swims announced coldly, stepping forward, wand raised, "Avada kedavra!"

Harry frantically rolled himself and Sirius out of the way as the killing curse blasted a large hole in the floor right where he'd been. "Protego!" he raised his own wand and blocked another killing curse, sending it rebounding and blowing a huge hole in the wall after Swims quickly ducked...

...giving Harry a brainstorm on how to get out of the room. "You can't kill me, Swims," he taunted the warden, darting around with his back towards the nearest wall, "You don't have what it takes. And Voldemort won't reward you if he can't kill me himself, you know that as much as I do."

"What's he saying, sir?" O'Doone stuck his head through the doorway.

"He's crazy, O'Doone, don't listen to him! Cover me!" Swims marched forward, "I'm finishing this!"

"You can't hit me, Swims. You couldn't hit me earlier at the museum on Downing Street, and you can't hit me now," Harry continued taunting him.

"Oh yeah!? Stay back, he's mine!" Swims warned the other wizards starting to surge forward. He reared his arm back and shouted, "AVADA KEDAVRA!" at the top of his lungs, firing a major green blast from his wand...

"PROTEGO!" Harry spun sideways and deflected the curse into the wall with the shielding charm. As he'd hoped, it blew a tremendous hole in it-and the sea could be seen foaming outside. "Locomotor mortis!" he fired another spell at Swims, locking up his legs and making him trip. "Expelliarmus!" he disarmed the warden as well when he tried to fire another curse at him from his chest. "Lumos totallus!" he fired off his own blinding light, making the wizards stumble backwards in agony. Harry crawled towards Sirius's still unconscious body. "Wingardium leviosa!" he hissed, levitating his godfather off the ground. Seizing Sirius by the hand, he rushed through the wall and out of the prison. Dawn was rising, but Harry's mind was on something else.

"Sirius," he gently slapped his godfather's face, "Sirius, wake up; tell me what the Portkey is!"

Sirius mumbled something unintelligible. "Say that again, please!" Harry pleaded with him, taking large steps across the rocks; it stood to reason the Dementors would be coming soon, "Sirius, if we miss the Portkey...what is it?"

He listened as Sirius mumbled something again. "New...new...come on, Sirius, please be clearer!" he all but shouted, unable to make Sirius's words out at all, "I can't...!"

And then he saw it: an old newspaper wedged between two rocks not more than fifty yards away...

...and then he heard it as well: the loud shrieks of the Dementors. Dozens upon dozens of them were pouring through the hole in the wall at light speed towards him. Harry broke into a full run, although Sirius was slowing him down. He couldn't let go of his godfather, though; if he left Sirius behind, his soul would likely be sucked out. He just had to beat the Dementors to the Portkey...

...but they were gaining ground quickly. They'd be on him in no time now. He had to at least make a brief stand...

And so he spun and bellowed, "EXPECTO PATRONUM!" as hard as he could...and not a moment too soon, for the Dementors were seconds away from seizing him. They were soon sent scattering as the silvery deer leaped out of the wand and send them bowling over. Keeping a hand firmly on Sirius's wrist, Harry dove for the newspaper and grabbed hold of it...

...also not a moment too soon, for no sooner had his fingers touched the paper than the Portkey triggered, and the two of them were dragged through space. Harry breathed a sigh of relief; they'd just made it in time. A minute later, he and Sirius landed with a thump on the living room floor of Number Twelve Grimmault Place. "Harry," Lupin rushed forward towards him, "Good, you're all right. Sirius..." he frowned at his groaning friend on the floor.

"He was knocked out before we could leave," Harry hung his head miserably, "If I hadn't been stupid enough to get locked in Azkaban...!"

"Now Harry, he should be all right," Lupin assured him, sizing Sirius up, "Yes, just a regular concussion, easily fixable..."

"Professor, tell me," Harry had to get something else off his chest, taking a deep gulp as Lupin put his wand to Sirius's head, bringing him back to, "I need to know..."

"Yes?"

"Snape, before I was locked...he said my father...Tiberius Castlebert...that he'd...is it...?"

He knew it was true from the grim expression growing on Lupin's face. "Yes, Harry, I'm afraid it is," he said softly, "I didn't want to tell you earlier, given James was...well, you might as well know it all now. Your father volunteered to guard Tiberius until the threat had passed. Someone in the death squad-I'm guessing Thaddeus Devlin, who was known to have been good at such things-forged a false desperate letter seemingly from your mother, making it look like you and she were being attacked by Death Eaters, and that he needed to come at once..."

"Remus, please, he doesn't have to...!" Sirius spoke up quickly, looking rather upset.

"Dumbledore would want him to know the truth now, Sirius," Lupin shook his head at his friend. Turning back to Harry, he said slowly, "And so, believing you and she were in danger, your father rushed from his post, leaving Tiberius unguarded. And since Lucius Malfoy had been chosen as the Secret Keeper, and had told Voldemort everything, the real Death Eaters came and killed him. By the time your father realized he'd been tricked and came back, it was too late."

"So it was my fault," Harry lamented, burying his hands in his face, "If I wasn't there for him to..."

"Harry, please don't say that; you know it's not your fault. You were less than a year old; there was..."

"YES IT IS MY FAULT!" he screamed, making Lupin and Sirius jump back in shock, "Everything's my fault! Emma's father would still be alive if it wasn't for me...my own parents would still be alive if it wasn't for me...!"

"Harry, you can't think that," Sirius begged him, looking heartbroken to see his godson so miserable, "I don't know what Severus Snape might have said to you, but he's..."

"Absolutely right; I hate to admit it, but he is; everything would be better off without me-look around us, Sirius," he held up a hand as his godfather started to protest, "I could have got you killed, Derek might have his soul sucked out, Ron and Hermione are locked up back at Hogwarts, Dumbledore's on the run, the Ministry has the school locked down, Voldemort's about to do something terrible. All of this if I hadn't brought Derek along...I need to be alone..."

With a low sob, he took off running towards the bedroom, only barely hearing Lupin muttering behind him, "No, Sirius, let him have some time on his own." Harry preferred to have all the time to his own. He accidentally bumped the cover off the portrait of Mrs. Black in his haste to get to the bedroom, and the air soon filled with her angry shouts: "BLOOD TRAITORS! MUGGLE-LOVING FILTH! DISGRACE TO...!"

"Oh shut up!" Harry decked the picture hard. Clutching a now bleeding nose, Mrs. Black staggered out of the frame. Too upset to cover it up again, Harry rushed into the bedroom and sobbed into the bed. Why, why, why had everything gone apart like this-and on Christmas Eve too, as it was now? So many people now having a miserable Christmas, all because of him one way or another. If only there was some way he could think of to make it all right...or to go back and make sure he wasn't able to cause so much grief...

How long he lay there, he didn't know, and was brought back to attention only by a creaking of the floorboards in the doorway behind him. "Harry," Lupin spoke softly and carefully, "If it is worth anything, your father felt terrible about having been tricked by the Death Eaters till the end of his life. In his last months, he was terribly depressed over it, wishing he could have seen through the deception. He felt miserable that Tiberius's daughter would have to grown up without him..."

"Well that won't bring Tiberius back," Harry grumbled, still miserable himself, "And wishing won't bring my parents back either. Snape was right; ever since I was born...I don't want this any more, Professor," he turned to look at Lupin, "I can't go on like this, with the misery of what's happened and what..."

"Harry, listen," Lupin sat down on the bed next to him, "We all feel like this some times. I felt the same way too after I was bitten. There was a time I considered throwing myself off a cliff rather than be a menace every month at the full moon (he glanced nervously at the window; Harry remembered from earlier in the week that the full moon was in fact tonight). But in fact, your father talked me out of it in one of the down periods. He said that to give up on life is worse than having no life at all. And all these years later, I can see he was right. Don't give up, Harry; it's always darkest before the dawn."

"Unfortunately, Remus, things just got darker," Sirius appeared in the doorway, glaring, and with a copy of the Daily Prophet in hand, "The cover just updated a minute ago. Not only did Fudge put a price on Harry for catching him, he's putting forth the ultimate lie now-he and Skeeter, it looks like. I'll bet he personally paid her under the table for this one."

"What?" Lupin frowned, groping for the paper, "What...oh no, no, no," he groaned upon taking a look at it. Harry leaned forward for a look of his own. His jaw nearly hit the floor at the grossly fraudulent headline atop the front page:


YOU KNOW WHO CONFIRMED DEAD

BODY OF INFAMOUS DARK WIZARD FOUND IN GODRIC'S HOLLOW; BOY WHO LIVED AT LARGE AND DANGEROUS

AN EXCLUSIVE BY RITA SKEETER

Yesterday, this reporter was privileged to break to you the major story that Harry Potter had violated our world's ironclad secrecy by exposing us to a Muggle. Today, another success: a personal search of the house in Godric's Hollow where Lily and James Potter were killed has revealed the body of He Who Must Not Be Named. Convinced that the wild rumors of His return could be easily disproved, this reporter searched the ruins of the house, still standing in Godric's Hollow late last night. Sure enough, tapping around the foundation where the toilet once was revealed a secret compartment with a familiar decomposing body inside.

"Our sincerest congratulations to Rita for having the initiative to search out the truth and make this momentous discovery," a proud Cornelius Fudge eagerly told this paper, "We had our highest level wizards examine the body thoroughly, and I can confirm one hundred percent that it is the body of You Know Who, and that he has been dead all this time since the night he killed the Potters. The wizarding world can relax now; the monster is dead and has been dead and will never be coming back."

Which means of course that young Potter has been lying about He Who Must Not Be Named from the start, which fits his current mindset fully. And in his daring escape from Azkaban Prison last night, with the help of the murderous Sirius Black, he gravely wounded several members of the prison staff, including warden Charonius Swims, who narrowly escaped the Killing Curse from Potter's wand.

"He's psychotic, that one," he grumbled to this reporter in an exclusive interview, "Threatened to kill all of us if we didn't let him escape, then went ahead and tried it anyway. My deputy warden O'Doone was nearly tortured by he and Black. Perhaps the two of them are trying to start a new band of Death Eaters. After all, who's to say You Know Who wasn't after him to eliminate a rival?"

Nothing would be surprising at this point, particularly since Potter attacked this reporter without any cause earlier in the day when an interview was attempted inside Azkaban. Indeed, the Minister of Magic noted that Potter had also been charged with assaulting a fellow student at Hogwarts and gravely injuring her. The student in question, Emma Dickinson-whose father was incidentally killed due to dereliction of duty by Potter's father during the dark years-was unavailable for an interview due to the attack, but fellow student Draco Malfoy, who witnessed everything, described Potter as crazed during the assault.

"I guess he was so arrogant over having won the Quidditch match I faced him in earlier in the day, he wanted to rub it in," young Malfoy said to this reporter, "I wasn't about to let him attack a fellow Slytherin, and he almost killed me too when I tried to stop him. He's really out of control lately."

"Given the clear danger Potter presents to our society at the moment, I am authorizing a ten million galleon reward for his capture," Minister Fudge grimly told the press, "Anyone with information please contact us immediately; do not approach Potter on your own. We are prepared to use all our resources to bring he and Black in. Meanwhile, we have decided to destroy and scatter You Know Who's body, to assure everyone he is no longer a threat."

So if you see Potter anywhere, call the Ministry immediately. He's now a graver threat than You Know Who ever was.

Harry glared irately at the photo on the cover of a triumphant Fudge gesturing at a body on a table. The body was somewhat blurred, perhaps on purpose, but looked reasonably enough like Voldemort to perhaps fool anyone who hadn't seen him up close. "They can't do this!" he growled furiously at Sirius and Lupin, "They can't simply claim they found his body and say everything's done with!"

"I'm sure a lot of people were threatened and cajoled, Harry. Fudge has lost his mind over this, and he's deliberately enabling Rita to help him," Sirius muttered in disgust as well, "If this gets anyone killed, the both of them should go straight to Azkaban for life! Digging up a body and parading it around as Voldemort is as low and dangerous as it gets...!"

"That's not the only problem, Sirius," Lupin spoke up gravely, "Dumbledore said in his last communication that he feared Fudge would also take down the protection he'd put on the school for young Master Whitesell..."

"Oh no," Sirius grimaced, "He probably did. We'd better contact the Order and tell them to get people to the school as quickly as humanly possible. Voldemort could strike at any minute, and he's bound to have found out the protection was taken down..."

"It's got to be subtle, though; if Umbridge is back in charge there as we've heard, she's likely to have any Order members arrested on sight..."

"I can arrange some Polyjuice potion for it. Let's move..."

"Wait, I'm coming too," Harry rose up off the bed.

"I'm sorry, Harry, but we can't put you in harm's way," Lupin shook his head, "With the Ministry offering a bounty for you, we can't risk you being captured or worse."

"But Professor, I need to...!"

"I'm afraid Remus is right, Harry, you'll have to stay here for now," Sirius shook his head too, "I don't like it any more than you, but we can't risk losing you. OK?"

"All right," Harry muttered miserably, slumping back down.

"We'll keep you in the loop, Harry, we promise," Lupin told him in closing as he and Sirius hurried out the door. Harry trudged to the window, miserable, and stared out. He'd been apparently in the room for most of the day, for the sun was close to setting now. Christmas Eve was practically over already-a Christmas Eve just as bad as any at the Dursleys'. "I'm out of Azkaban, but I'm still a prisoner," he muttered out loud to himself, "How can I make things right if I can't go anywhere!?"

He had no answer. Growling, he slipped back towards the bed and buried his face in the pillow, wondering where things could go from here. But, he reasoned as he started drifting off to sleep, exhausted after a long night and day, it couldn't get much worse than this...


And suddenly he was flying. He was partially around the neck of a robed and masked figure riding a broomstick, one of dozens of similarly figures riding in formation across the twilight sky over wild countryside below. There was a sense of clear nervous anticipation among all of them, as if they'd been waiting for this moment for some time.

"My Lord," came Gaspard Gavertson's weak voice from behind the mask of the wizard Harry was hanging on to, his tone hissing as if in Parceltongue, "While I appreciate that you wish me to still join everyone on this, I don't...I would prefer a much different role..."

"Would you have preferred to have remained behind, Gavertson?" Harry slithered up and looked him menacingly in the face, "You WILL do exactly as you are ordered to, or I will request one of my FAITHFUL Death Eaters kill you where you stand. You should be grateful Lord Voldemort was willing to grant you mercy to do this final chore for him."

"It...it's not right, my Lord; he's..."

"What I have planned is absolutely right. So you'd better not prove weak when the time comes. Here we are," Harry looked straight ahead. Hogwarts was getting closer. Slowly the riders descended, landing en masse on the lightning-struck tower. "Good, the Ministry did their part." Lucius stepped forward towards the stairs into the castle and turned to examine the large group of Death Eaters, "All right, you all know your assignments-and remember, do NOT harm any Slytherins," he emphasized very clearly, a tinge of concern in his voice, perhaps for his son's well-being, "Yaxley, Mulciber, get the Mudblood. Swims, Dolohov, get Dickinson's daughter. Rowle, Rodolphus, find and kill Potter's friends Weasley and Granger. The rest of you, cover them and take out as many Mudbloods and Squibs you feel is necessary. Let's be in and out if we can."

"We're ready, Lucius," Bellatrix confidently stated, stepping forward with her wand raised, "Let's do it."

Lucius nodded firmly and led his colleagues down the stairs. "Stay to the rear," Harry hissed to Gaspard, "You have no role in what they're about to do. Just do as you've been told."

"My Lord..." Gaspard tried to plead, "Theodoric was my brother, the only family I had. He served you loyally-what may have happened generations before..."

"Is just as relevant to Lord Voldemort as the present," Harry growled, "You are not a true wizard, and therefore no longer worthy to be considered a Death Eater. And your brother failed deliberately. If you fail me now, his fate will be yours. So do as you've been ordered."

Screams rang out in front of them. The Death Eaters had come down into the castle right as a group of Ravenclaw girls were passing the stairs. Two Death Eaters leaped forward and fired blasts at them as they scattered to run, sending two of them falling motionless to the floor. "Let the rest of them spread the alarm if they want; we still have the advantage," Lucius barked, "You know what to do; spread out and do it."

The Death Eaters broke into several groups and hurried in different directions. Gaspard walked slowly behind one group on its way to the Great Hall. "I repeat, my Lord, it's not right to do this..." he begged weakly.

"I will not listen to any more of your complaints, Gavertson," Harry told him off. "You will do it whether you like it or not."

Perhaps realizing it was futile, Gaspard said nothing, following the sounds of screams from the Great Hall below, and the blasts of Dark magic now going off. Already the scene was one of complete chaos when he reached it: Death Eaters were blasting the walls, chasing students and teachers all around, and using Unforgivable Curses on a number of them. Harry nodded softly as Professor Flitwick, attempting to protect a young Hufflepuff boy, was hit with a Cruciatus Curse directly in front of them. "All according to plan, wouldn't you say, Gavertson?" he snickered to the man, "And look, your time has come at last. Behold."

"You're here, great!" it was Malfoy running up to Gaspard, looking like he was on top of the world, "Before you take anyone else out, go down to the dungeons; that Mudblood Granger's down there; finish her first!"

"Do it, now," Harry hissed to Gaspard, who looked pale as he slowly raised his wand. "I...I can't, my Lord...!" he moaned miserably.

"Of course you can, you fool, you're a Death Eater; get down there and take out Granger and the Mudblood Potter brought in!" Malfoy urged him, on an entirely different train of thought, "Are you all right there? You look..."

"Do it, now, Gavertson, or I'll kill you where you stand, you hear me, I'll kill you myself!" Harry hissed murderously, tightening his coils tightly around Gaspard's neck. Gasping in agony, Gaspard quickly aimed the wand at a now wide-eyed Malfoy. Harry couldn't quite hear the incantation that Gaspard cried, but whatever it was, it was effective: the powerful red blast sent Malfoy flipping head over heels through the air backwards, where he slammed harshly into the wall and crumpled to the floor, his face now gray, ashen, and shriveled. No one seemed to have noticed in the heat of the pitched battle all around them. "Oh, what have I done!?" Gaspard lamented, guilt on his face as he approached the fallen Malfoy, "What have I done...!?"

"What was necessary, Gavertson. So maybe there is hope for you," Harry assured him.

"But...but... he is a Pureblood like you and I, my Lord...Lucius is a Pureblood...he hasn't...!"

"The mission to get the crown was supposed to be a simple in and out; he almost exposed me by letting Potter spread the alarm. Therefore, he had to pay a price for that failure, and this is it," Harry snarled coldly, "If the boy dies, he dies; Lucius can simply have another if he wishes. Your work for me is done, Gaspard; stand aside and let my faithful servants complete my work."

He snatched the yew wand out of Gaspard's hand in his mouth and slithered off his shoulders, headed out of the Great Hall. All around him, the Death Eaters continued their dark work; in front of him, a wildly screeching Bellatrix, making no attempt to hide her identity at all, was shoving terrified first year Gryffindors into a closet. She slammed the door shut, and moments later, ominous green blasts were seen from under the door. In front of him, a confident-faced Lockhart jumped in front of three Death Eaters, challenging them to a duel. One of them-Avery, he could tell-hit him with an Imperius Curse and prompted him to pick up a large chunk of rock from the floor and bash himself repeatedly over the head with it. Another-Nott, he knew-blew a large chunk out of the ceiling that came down hard on top of a large group of screaming students. Behind him, Fenrir Greyback, now in his werewolf form since the full moon had started rising, raced after a few Ravenclaws, snapping hungrily at their heels. And at the end of the hall, there was Umbridge, casually leaning against the doorway to the headmaster's office, a wry grin on her face, making no attempt at all to stop the carnage. Some allies, he thought contentedly to himself, could always come through when needed.

He took his place by the stairway back to the lightning-struck tower and waited. Within five minutes, he saw what he wanted: four Death Eaters dragging a terrified Derek and a wildly resisting Emma up the stairs towards him. He nodded triumphantly. It was done.

"Take your hands off of me!" Emma was trying to bite one of the Death Eaters' hands as they approached him, "You're not taking us anywhere...!"

"Silencio!" the Death Eater in question hit her with a silencing curse. "Quite the spitfire here," he complained to his colleagues holding Derek, "I can see..."

"You have them?" Lucius was running forward, firing curses backwards at several teachers coming after him, "Very good," he sized Derek and Emma up, then touched his wand to the Dark Mark tattoo on his wrist. "Let's leave now that we have what we came for."

Indeed, the rest of the Death Eaters now appeared beside them. One of them blasted a torrent of fiendfyre from his wand, blocking the path behind them as they rushed back up to the tower with their prisoners. Harry slithered up onto Gaspard's shoulders again, but said nothing to the man, who looked glum and guilty. "Go, go, let's get to Drear before they raise an alarm!" Lucius impatiently ordered his colleagues as they seized their broomsticks and alighted, "Rabastan, the Mark!"

"MORSMORDRE!" the last Death Eater to alight fired the Dark Mark out of his wand, leaving it glowing ominously over the castle as they flew off into the darkness...


Harry bolted upright in bed, a cold chill running down his spin. No, it couldn't have just happened...!

In a flash, he tore out of the bedroom. Grimmault Place was deserted, which was probably for the better, as he didn't want anyone to stop him. He quickly lit a fire in the fireplace, grabbed a fistful of Floo Powder off the mantle, and tossed it into the flames. "Hagrid's hut!" he shouted, diving into the fire. He landed with a low pop on Hagrid's floor. The gamekeeper's hut was also deserted, and Harry prayed that didn't mean he was...

He rushed out of the hut...and almost immediately saw horrible proof his dream was true: sure enough, the Dark Mark hung terrifyingly over the castle, inside which fire could be seen burning and screams could be heard. Which meant Derek and Emma...and maybe even Ron and Hermione...

"NOOOOOO!" he shrieked, collapsing to his knees in anguish, "NO, NOT THIS, PLEASE! WHAT HAVE I DONE!? WHAT HAVE I DONE...!?"

"Nothing you should feel upset about, Harry," came Dumbledore's sudden voice behind him. Harry spun in shock, sure enough, the Headmaster was trudging out of the Forbidden Forest towards him. "I suspected you would come when you realized what Lord Voldemort was planning, Harry," he said softly, "Oh I realize the Forbidden Forest is ordinarily off-limits to Hogwarts, but it does come in handy in times of need. But you should..."

"It IS my fault, Professor! Everything's my fault, from the day I was born!" Harry lamented, slumping back to the ground, "I wish there was a way I would never have been...!"

"And then he realized something. "Professor, is there a way...to make sure someone could never have been born!?" he asked breathlessly.

"Are you sure you're aware of what you're asking, Harry?" Dumbledore asked him warily, "There is a reason we say to be careful what we wish for..."

"This IS what I wish for; I don't want to keep living this life anymore, Professor," Harry said firmly and miserably, "If I were never born, my parents would still be alive...the Ministry wouldn't have put the school in danger like this...is there a way!?"

"In fact there is," Dumbledore took a deep breath, "But I must warn you, Harry, there is no guaranteed way to undo its effects once it is cast..."

"Do it, please, Professor. I don't want to go on like this. For the sake of everyone I care for, please, do it," Harry begged him, "And thank you for everything you've taught me, honestly, but this is what I want."

"Very well, so be it then," Dumbledore seemed almost a little amused, Harry thought. Nevertheless, he raised his wand, pointed it at Harry, and mumbled something that sounded vaguely like, "Egrog Elaib." Harry didn't see or feel anything, however. "Did it work?" he asked, confused. Then he took a look at the castle, which now was no longer burning and looked almost normal. "It worked, didn't it?" he asked the headmaster.

"It did," Dumbledore said slowly, 'Harold James Potter, as of now, you have never been born."


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