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A/N: Well, it's been a long time since I've been on this site, and since I've even seen this story. I've had quite a few requests for this story, and, since it infuriates me when I cannot read a story that I once loved, I am posting this once more. I did love writing this, even though it was many a year ago, and even though it's complete drivel in most of it. I'd like to think that one day, I'll rewrite this. I don't think I will. Criticise as much as you want, since it's not current work, and my harshest critic is, and always will be, myself.

For those who were disappointed by the absence of this story in the past months/year, I apologise. I hope you find this again.

Also, before I forget, someone made this banner for me years ago, and I cannot for the life in me remember who. I'm very grateful for it, and only wish that I could remember who made it! :o)

Chapter One

It was midnight when Remus Lupin stepped out of the fireplace in Harry’s bedroom. Professor McGonagall had transfigured one of his books into it and had it connected with the Burrow and Grimmauld Place to give the Order easy access to him. Unfortunately for Harry it didn’t give him easy access to them. There was a barrier on it so that only the people appointed to watch over him could use it, or so Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny and the twins had been told. Remus was one of these supposed selected people (although there was no real barrier around the fireplace). There was him, Tonks, Minerva McGonagall and Bill Weasley all on six hour shifts with the lad. It wouldn’t have been that bad, it would have been good in fact, had they been permitted to speak with him, but Moody didn’t hold with that idea. He had said that the more Harry interacted with them then the closer they would be to him and the more vices Harry would have to be manipulated by Voldemort. Remus scowled just thinking about it. He knew that was ridiculous and whether or not Harry spent the first month of his holidays allowed to talk to the people watching him or not wouldn’t make the slightest difference.

He wished he could talk to Harry because all too many times he had seen him utterly miserable and it only seemed to be he that saw him in such states. When he was with Tonks and Bill he was apparently pretty cheerful and he wasn’t reported as being particularly unhappy with McGonagall so why was it only he who saw him so unhappy. He also seemed to be one of the only two who weren’t talking to Harry, despite the instructions given to them concerning interaction with him. Yesterday he had spent almost fifteen minutes watching Harry teach Bill the basics of skateboarding out in the street and here he was now watching as Tonks sat on a large chair with wheels which Harry was spinning round. Faster and faster he pushed it until he leapt onto her knees and spun round with her, both of them laughing until the chair tipped over backwards, throwing them both off and onto the floor where they laughed harder still.

“Uh… Hey Remus.” Tonks said quietly after their laughter subsided. Remus was aware that he was being watched intently by both people on the floor, anxiously awaiting his reaction. He allowed a slight smile to touch his face before helping first Harry and then Tonks from the floor.

Remus was conflicted. He could either tell Tonks off for talking to Harry and save her being caught by someone worse than himself, such as Professor McGonagall or Mad Eye himself, or he could give up his silence and talk to Harry himself. He looked at Harry and saw that he was still smiling slightly but there was no trace of happiness in his eyes, quite the opposite. He realised that he had never seen happiness there all summer, even at school where he seemed cheerful and always full of laughter. School – Harry had been attending Stonewall High during each July since he had started at Hogwarts. He accompanied his three muggle friends, whom he had apparently known since he was about 5, there and back everyday. Remus couldn’t help but think that it was just something to keep his mind from Sirius and the events of the previous month. His own heart sank at the thought of Sirius and wondered how much hurt Harry felt on the subject. He knew he was blaming himself, that was Harry’s way and Remus could easily see why Harry blamed himself, even if the blame wasn’t just.

“Yoohoo!” A call from Tonks brought him from his train of thought. He blinked and saw Harry and Tonks watching him. Tonks looking amused, Harry looking slightly troubled. “Anyway, now that Remus is back in the real world then I guess I’ll be going. I’ll see you tomorrow, Harry.”

“See you.” Harry replied as he watched her walk through the fireplace and back to Grimmauld Place. He threw himself down on his bed and watched Remus eye his school books with interest. “So what’s up?” Harry asked him, “You seem more out of it than usual.”

Remus looked at him for a moment, wondering what really was wrong with him but he just shook his head and told him he didn’t know, which wasn’t a lie. “What’s up with you?” Remus said, turning the conversation away from him and in Harry’s direction, who looked completely different to the way he had when he was spinning round on the chair with Tonks. He no longer had a trace of a smile on his face and the misery in his eyes seemed to have increased.

“Nothing.” Harry replied, and smiled slightly as if to show it, but again it didn’t touch his eyes.

“Do I have such a negative effect on you that as soon as we’re alone you lapse into misery?” Remus asked him. Harry looked at him, shocked and slightly confused. Remus could tell from his reactions that that wasn’t the case.

“Of course not. I just…” Harry broke off, not knowing how to finish his sentence. “Do you ever think I’m really happy?” Harry suddenly asked him, the question caught Remus off guard and he stared at Harry, unable to respond. “And do you know how difficult it is to try and force a smile for 24 hours a day because you’re never, ever alone?!” Harry’s voice had risen slightly and Remus looked at him, quite alarmed. “Sorry, forget I said that.” Harry muttered before moving as if to get up. He never got higher than two inches from the bed because Remus pulled him back down onto it.

“Talk to me.” Remus told him. Harry sighed and lay down on his bed, his head sinking into his pillows. He knew that the consequences of allowing Remus to see him unhappy would be this but he still wasn’t ready for it when it happened. All the same he didn’t regret it being Remus that he would be talking to. He looked to Remus and opened his mouth to speak but stopped at the strange look on his face.

“What’s that on your arm?” Remus asked him softly, looking to his left arm. Harry’s stomach lurched and he pulled his sleeve down over his arm, not wanting him to see the cuts that criss-crossed his arm. He wasn’t fast enough though, Remus had hold of his arm tightly in a moment and he gasped as pain shot through it. He pulled up the sleeve and saw the cuts that were there. It felt like an eternity passed before Remus let his arm drop. “Merlin.” He murmured. His eyes were fixed on Harry now. The eyes are the window to the soul. His head told him. If that were the case then Harry’s soul was breaking under hurt and misery. He swallowed before asking why. Why did he do it? When did he do it? How could no one have known?

Harry smiled sadly and shook his head before turning over onto his side, away from Remus’ hurt stare. He couldn’t take that look he fixed on him, Harry would rather he shouted at him or hit him or anything but the misery in his eyes. Depression had a firm grip on him now and it didn’t look like it was going to let him go. Harry felt a lump in his throat and the tears fall from his eyes. On the floor he could see the glass shards which he had used to make the marks on his arm. He desperately wanted to feel that searing pain again, take away everything else and just feel that, no fear, no misery, no memory, just the pain but he knew he couldn’t do it to Remus, who had already looked as though he was going to cry as well. He curled his legs up to his chest and let out a shaky breath. He felt Remus put his hand on his arm and from the corner of his eyes he could see him, lying on his side next to him, propping himself up on his arm and looking down on him sadly. Harry started to speak to Remus and as he did so he realised that it was everything. All his fears and hates and grief were tumbling from his mouth in a torrent and throughout Remus just lay next to him with his hand on his arm, listening. He heard him talk about his hate of Voldemort, how much he missed Sirius, how he hated his lack of happiness, how he wanted a normal life, how he had never been allowed what could pass for a normal year at Hogwarts, how he feared his OWL results, how he knew he hadn’t got an O in potions, how he couldn’t live up to the excellence of his parents, how he blamed himself for Cedric’s death and how he could never beat Voldemort alone.

“Of course you can’t beat Voldemort alone.” Remus said quietly, “but no one expects you to.” Harry laughed aloud and realised that it must only be he and Dumbledore that knew what the prophecy actually said.

“The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches. Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies. And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not. And either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives. The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies.” Harry said softly, repeating the words Sybil Trelawney had spoken so many years ago. “That was what the prophecy said.” Harry explained. Remus stared at him in horror, realising that Harry would kill… or be killed. Then he remembered the last thing he had said to him. Of course you can’t beat Voldemort alone. His own words echoed back in his head and he felt the utmost regret at having said them. He didn’t know what to say. Throughout Harry’s ramblings he had said various things when he saw fit, either to comfort him or just to put him straight when he was very wrong but now no words came to him and he lay next to him in stunned silence. Eventually he lay his head down next to Harry’s and put his arm around him and held him tightly, feeling a desperate urge to cry himself. This wasn’t fair, why was it always Harry? He had already lost Sirius and he didn’t think he could take it if he lost Harry as well.

“Don’t worry, Remus.” Harry said quietly and gave the hand wrapped around him a gentle squeeze to try and comfort him.

“Don’t worry?” Remus echoed. “How can I not? You’re the apparently immortal Dark Lord’s number one target!” He felt a tear glide down his cheek and fall to the pillow. “I don’t want anything to happen to you.”

“Lots of things already have happened to me and I always get out okay.” Harry tried to reassure him.

“That’s like saying that just because you’ve not yet been killed by a falling piano means that you’re immune to them.” Remus told him and Harry smiled at the analogy.

“That’s really not the same.” Harry told him. Remus didn’t disagree but he knew that his analogy was apt. Harry yawned and closed his eyes for a moment but before he knew it he was fast asleep.

“Harry?” Remus said quietly. No answer. He leant over the boy and saw that his eyes were closed and almost dry. He sighed and murmured a good night before closing his own eyes. In the morning Tonks would most likely find them curled up together but he didn’t care. He wished that he had asked Harry though, before he had gone to sleep, it would be harder to talk to him in the morning when he was getting ready for school. His mind wandered to Sirius’ request only a week before he died.

“If anything happens to me, Moony, promise me you’ll look after Harry for me and be his godfather, promise me…” Remus had told him that nothing would happen but Sirius hadn’t let him get away without his word that he would. Not that he didn’t want to look after Harry or give his word that he would, it was just that promising to look after him when he was dead seemed to make the danger they all were in seem so much more real. His mind began to wander aimlessly and he found himself remembering the last time he had held a sleeping Harry in his arms. It had been fourteen years ago. If someone had told him then that he would never hold the sleeping boy in his arms again for more than a decade he would never have believed it, and yet it had happened. He smiled sadly and fell asleep, his mind filled with the past.

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