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Monday, May 18th, 2009 01:31 pm
Title: Santa’s Helper
Summary: What might have happened if Voldemort attacked the Potters on one of the more popular muggle holidays? What if another had found little Harry on the front stoop of the Dursleys and took him in as his own?
Fandom: Harry Potter
Word Count: 4309
Ratings/Warnings: PG13 for violence
Pairings: Harry/Luna


Disclaimer: I own nothing but the plot, and probably only parts of that if you squint really hard…

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It was the very end of his rounds when the white haired man spotted the small bundle on the cold stoop. His jolly smile soon turned to a frown as he realized that a child, not a gift fit for sitting on the snow-covered porch, was inside of it. The red clad man flipped back the end of his floppy hat to get a better look at the child.

Shivering in the cold, the toddler gave a small sneeze, which displaced the letter that was tucked into its not-quite-warm-enough blue blanket. A white-gloved hand snatched it up before the envelope could slide to the ground. It was then shoved into the man’s coat pocket for safekeeping as he busied himself picking up the youngling.

“It’s a little early for me to be looking for a successor but you’re a little bit younger than usual, too. Abigail and I were looking for something to do and, as the non-magical folk keep getting closer and closer to home, this would save another trip that would not go as unnoticed as usual.” The man chuckled as the child responded with another small sneeze and a happy gurgle.

Still smiling to himself, he lifted one finger to the side of his nose and twinkled out of sight.

-----------------------------------------------------

Later that morning a certain headmaster was awoken by the wailing sound of wards being breached, sending him and those he contacted into a wild frenzy. Many searches were made and countless spells were cast, but no one could find ‘The-Boy-Who-Lived’.

-----------------------------------------------------

Another family awoke to wailing, but of a different kind. Vernon and Petunia Dursley had no peace for the next week or so as their young son Dudley was immensely depressed. As any child would be, having been forgotten by Saint Nicholas.

-----------------------------------------------------

“For real?” a young voice asked loudly.

The fourteen year old looked at his dad, grin spread from ear to ear. At his father’s nod, Harry launched himself at the now forty-year-old man with a happy shout.

Thirteen years had passed since John Clark had taken home the small Harry Potter--now Clark. John’s wife, Abigail had been ecstatic to have the young boy in their home, and she immediately set out to adopt him for their own. The family went on as usual from then: well, as usual as a family could get living in the small North Pole community.

John smiled as he thought back on when he told a curious five-year-old Harry that his dad wasn’t Santa, but one of his Helpers. Santa was alive and well but he just didn’t have the stamina he once had and the population of the world had grown from the first time he delivered the children’s toys for being good, so now he usually just did things from behind the scenes. He visited those in the village from time to time but when he wasn’t busy watching the children of the world he taught a greater form of divinination to the children of his helpers.

This explanation didn’t clear up Harry’s questions as to why the village seemed to only have mostly white haired people yet all of the children had different colored hair, sometimes streaked with white, however. This question was answered when he turned eight and joined their magic school, Tinkerton’s Institute for the Gifted.

Apparently all those who lived or were raised in the North Pole had the ability to perform magic. Unfortunately, this particular branch of magic changed the users hair to a shocking white the more proficient you became. Only those who planned to follow in their parents’ footsteps as Santa’s Helpers or married into the village were allowed to learn it. Those who didn’t and were still born there were sent with good wishes to the Salem Institute for Witches, with a small spell to keep them from giving away too much about the town.

Those who did go to Tinkerton learned how to conjure the perfect gift for every person, how to charm watchful children into a peaceful sleep, how to Twinkle and even learned how to create a fully decorated tree from a matchstick.

This year though, was going to be Harry’s first big job. He was given responsibility of the whole of Scotland to give presents to! Last year, he had been allowed to give out presents to a small city under glamour, but this was going to be big!

He had thought that he wasn’t going to be allowed to because of the rat incident, but apparently it had worked itself out in the end. ‘Maybe I’ll get to see that cute girl again.’ Harry thought to himself as he went to find something suitable to make a sled out of.

-----------------------------------------------------

Around this time, sitting in a hidden castle in Scotland, a certain werewolf was remembering the past year.

‘And what a crazy year it has been!’

After being hired as the Defense Against the Dark Arts Professor, Remus Lupin thought that he would have a quiet year, as Hogwarts was the best place to be safe from the newly risen-again Lord Voldemort. Having been successful in stealing the Philosopher’s Stone through a past DADA teacher, he revived himself and was once again wreaking havoc throughout the wizarding world.

Not only that, the infamous Sirius Black had broken out of Azkaban by himself! Voldemort had already passed through and let out his Death Eaters and surprised everyone by leaving Black. ‘Then again, him escaping a few days later did nothing for his reputation,’ Remus thought smiling softly.

The most surprising of events though, happened when the weary professor had been invited to the Lovegood house for Christmas. After a little bit of persuasion Remus agreed, as he had known the eccentric Lovegood since he had been in Hogwarts. They had been study partners even though Remus was a Gryffindor and Larry had been a Ravenclaw.

The whole season had been filled with merriment and different strange and seemingly invisible animals, though he couldn’t say he hadn’t seen a few out of the corner of his eye. It had been most exciting on Christmas morning, as even the unflappable Luna Lovegood seemed to be blushing with the happiness of the season.

When they had opened their gifts, Remus had been a little disappointed and confused. Luna had received a string of bottle caps reading ‘Coke’ and a note that she smiled at but didn’t read aloud, Larry had received a set of pictures of what he had identified immediately as a Snorkack, but Remus had received just one thing.

A Petrified rat.

He had looked at it in confusion as something tugged at the back of his mind, just beyond the reach of his memory. He had picked it up to get a better look when he found something shaved into the hair on his back. “Animagus” was all it took for the memory to body slam the unsuspecting werewolf.

Bidding a hasty good-bye to his wonderful hosts and a promise to come back in an hour or so, he rushed to the Ministry’s Department of Defense. He went straight to Madam Bones’ office, just in time to see her come in for her mandatory hour and a half of work. She had later told him that ‘crime doesn’t stop when the holidays start, though I wish that it did!’

The trial for the innocence of Sirius Black was held two days later, after which Peter ‘Traitor’ Pettigrew was sentenced to life as a muggle lab-rat, as Azkaban wasn’t secure enough.

Remus chuckled to himself about his students’ reactions when Sirius had come bursting into the great hall on the first day back, shouting for joy and even forgetting to argue with Snape in his happiness. Dumbledore saying that he was going to be the new substitute teacher was the only thing that brought Sirius back to the situation. Everyone had a good laugh at his cry of horror and moans of ‘If Prongs ever finds out...’ and ‘Laughing stock.’

The rest of that school year had gone by smoothly, if you looked over the obvious Black-Snape spats and Sirius teaming up with a set of mischievous red heads to torment the Slytherins.

A smile tugged at the corner of his mouth as he watched the snowfall outside of his office window. He was the first DADA teacher to break the curse and stay two years in a row. The Tri-Wizard tournament was in full swing and though Remus didn’t like the idea of children competing the way they were, he could at least help them by making sure they wouldn’t have to fight something that would be too big of a challenge.

‘Only Hagrid would suggest that dragons be used as a challenge. Even then, only Dumbledore would agree to let them do it. Glad I talked them out of that!’

It was now almost Christmas, the Yule Ball had just been held and the only thing missing from his life were those who had passed on and a young boy that no one had seen since that fateful night thirteen years before.

-----------------------------------------------------

Just a couple of miles away, this same boy let out a small sigh of disappointment. The girl hadn’t been staying with her father again this year and he didn’t have the slightest idea of where she could be.

‘Oh, well.’ Harry thought to himself. ‘Maybe she’ll be back next year.’

He landed silently on the roof of a large castle and hopped out of his one-seated sleigh with ease. Walking up to the two glamoured ‘reindeer’ he whispered, “Last stop. Wait up here for me, okay?”

The stag nodded his head and bent down to munch some of the oats Harry had conjured on the roof. After checking to see that his own glamour was in place, he put his finger next to his nose and Twinkled away.

-----------------------------------------------------

A half an hour later, Harry mentally checked off the people he had already visited and found that he only had one more child but two more 'child-at-heart' adults. He smiled as he walked stealthily to the room of a man whose aura he recognized as the one he had given the rat to last year. Peeking into the bedroom next to his, he found the man he freed.

‘Last two adults! Let’s see, what do they want...’ Harry thought to himself as he made a small sheet of paper and spelled it to pick-up the two men’s desires. A small frown appeared on his face as he saw what was at the top of the list for both men was the same. For Sirius was listed: Godson – Harry Potter (Clark) and under Remus was: Best friend’s (God) Son – Harry Potter (Clark).

Harry wasn’t sure what to do, as he had seen this near the top of Remus’ List last year and had chosen to ignore it in favor of completing two of his other wishes to make up for it, but now both of them wanted to see him. He made a quick decision and slipped out of the room once more. Materializing a light glass ball in front of him, he called out quietly, “John Clark, Father.”

After a few seconds, his dad’s face appeared within the ball. “Is anything wrong, Harry?” John asked, worry evident in his voice and on his face.

Harry gave a small smile that turned into a grimace, “You remember the man I gave the rat last year?”

“Yes,” his father replied slowly.

“Well, he is kinda’ here and I’m still at the top of his list and someone who seems to be my godfather. Should I just try to make them two of their other wishes or do I let them see me?”

Harry waited patiently as his dad thought about it for a bit. “How many more presents do you have to give out?”

“I only sense one more child like aura, I could probably do it in a couple minutes,” Harry replied promptly.

John nodded, “The best thing would be to let them visit with you for a bit, but you have to be careful. Don’t let to much slip about what you’re doing; glamour your hair back to all black and remember you only have about an hour to finish and get your last gift out before you have to come home. If you’re not back in this house by two I’m going to come out there looking for you, mister!” John smiled and waved before cutting off the connection.

Smiling, Harry tossed the glass ball up where it popped soundlessly out of being in a wave of small sparkles. He concentrated, shifting the glamour from his whole body to just his hair. All traces of white gone from his typically messy hair, the now jean clad boy stepped back into the room after tweaking his magic back to its first state. ‘I have to remember, these are magical people also and they might sense the change from training at TIG,’ Harry reminded himself as he snuck into the bedroom that he believed belonged to his godfather.

Sirius was sleeping calmly on his bed when Harry walked in. The green-eyed boy contemplated a soft awakening, but then shrugged, ‘I only have an hour after all.’ With that thought, Harry made a running jump at the bed, surprised when the only reaction he got was a mumbled, “Five more minuffs,” before Sirius pulled a pillow over his head. One eyebrow raised, Harry looked down at the man, bemused yet still smiling. That smile turned slightly evil as he easily pulled the pillow away.

“This is no time for sleeping! You wanted to see me, so Wake Up!” With that Harry jumped off of the bed taking the pillow and the blankets with him. Sirius’ response was to grope around blindly for the missing warmth before sitting up and blinking the sleep from his eyes.

“W’us a matter?” was the first half-awake phrase that came out of his mouth. He looked around only to get hit lightly in the face by a duplicate of his own pillow.

Now more awake and annoyed Sirius started, “Hey! What do you think you’r--” before he caught sight of Harry standing there smiling at him. “—e do-ing?” Sirius’ last part came out in almost a whisper, “James?”

Harry's nose wrinkled a bit at the wrong name, “Do I really look that much like my father?” A pause as the older man’s brow furrowed, then...

“Harry?” the man asked, still in slight shock.

“That’s my name, or so I’ve been told.”

Sirius just kept impersonating a gold fish until, poomf! He shook himself out of it as another pillow hit him square in the face. "Hey, wait! When did you--? How did you--?" was as far as the interrogation got before he was hit by another pillow, effectively distracting him from the topic.

The animagus smirked as he snatched it and its fellow off of the bed and looked back up. “Oh, it's on, buddy. It is on!”

Harry’s eyes widened before he started to run and ‘find’ more pillows scattered across the floor. The wild pillow fight lasted all of five minutes before Sirius caught him. “Say Uncle!” Sirius taunted.

“Why should I say ‘Uncle’ if you’re my godfather?” Harry asked smirking slightly. Sirius just rolled his eyes and let Harry up. The boy smiled before turning to leave the room.

“Hey! Just where do you think you’re going?” asked Sirius incredulously.

“I’m not just here to be your Christmas present, ya know. You can come along if you like to,” Harry called back over his shoulder. “I’m sure Remus won’t mind.”

Sirius blinked; still half asleep himself, even after the pillow fight, and then ran to catch up, “Can I wake him up? Please? He is usually the first one up and so I never get to mess with a half-asleep Remus anymore!”

Harry grinned, “Sure thing!”

After an amusing interlude containing Sirius in dog form licking Remus’ face until he was too grossed out to try and sleep through it, someone (i.e. Remus) finally asked the million-dollar question.

“Harry? Why are you here? How did you get here? Where have you been?” Remus asked rapid-fire questions before turning on a nodding Sirius. “And why are you nodding? Don’t tell me, you didn’t even think to ask?”

Remus just rolled his eyes as Sirius tried to look indignant, ignoring cries of "Hey, I tried" and "Pillow, right in the face," before turning to Harry, waiting for some answers.

Having known this was going to come eventually, Harry sighed. “I’m not supposed to tell.” Here he was forced to hold up a hand to stop both of the men, “I’m sorry but I promised my adoptive father that I wouldn’t. I can come visit every once in a while, that’s good isn’t it?”

Harry sat in silence as he watched the emotions on both men’s faces flicker from interest to protest to hurt and finally to a grudging acceptance. This acceptance came first from Remus and then from Sirius only after he had looked once more to see that Harry was okay with this.

Smiling, Harry had just opened his mouth to speak once again when he froze and looked sharply at the door. Standing there was an old man with a longer beard than Harry had ever seen used by any of the glamours for over fifty years.

“I see we have finally found him. They always did say that the best place to hide something is in plain sight, but who would have thought he was walking around Hogwarts for all these years?” the old man chuckled.

Half rising from his seat on the bed, Remus started, “Albus. What are--?”

Albus Dumbledore’s eyes twinkled merrily, “Do you remember the prophecy that I have alluded to for many years? It was told before Voldemort-” a tiny flinch came from both marauders, “-and it prophesied that the young boy in standing in front of you would be the one to defeat Voldemort once and for all.”

The Headmaster then walked cheerily over to Harry, who gave him nothing but a raised brow and sparing little more than a glance at the bat like man tailing behind him. Sirius stood up to argue as Remus went to take a step forward but a smiling Harry stopped both.

“I would like to help you Mr. Dumbledore, but I have to be home in,” here Harry looked at his watch, “about twenty minutes or so. I’m only here as a gift for Sirius and Remus from Ol’ Saint Nick.” He grinned at the old man’s look of shock before turning back to his newest relations.

He was stopped by the sneering voice of the bat man, “Just like your father I see, Potter. Irresponsible and arrogant.”

Sirius got in a “Shut it, Sniv--” before getting kicked in the shin by Remus. Snape just sneered as Harry turned back with innocent eyes.

“Actually, yes I am like my father but he is neither of those things.” Snape cut off Harry before he could finish completely.

“Was, Potter. Not is, as your father is no longer among the living.”

Harry frowned a little as he spoke, “That is what I was trying to say before you cut me off, my name isn’t ‘Potter’; it’s Clark. My father is still among the living and will be looking for me if I don’t get home in time!” At Snape’s expression of shock Harry smiled again.

Finally being able, Harry turned back to Remus and Sirius. “I am terribly sorry but I have to leave a bit early, something seems to have come up. I promise to come and see you when ever TIG is out, okay?”

Not waiting for an answer, he gave both of the men a swift hug and raced out to the hallway. There he quickly shoved his glamour back into place, conjured a life size doll of himself and then headed towards the nearest fireplace. The Headmaster and his bat had just made it into the room when they heard a deep voice give a large chuckle and say, “Merry Christmas!” A large shower of sparkles then greeted them where the ‘two’ had been standing before.

Snape sputtered, “H-how--? You can’t apparate inside Hogwarts!”

After a moment of shock, Dumbledore just smiled. “It seems he was just Santa’s Gift after all,” he chuckled, taking out a pair of fluffy socks with a bow on them and smiling.

-----------------------------------------------------

Harry appeared just inside the Ravenclaw common room after a small side trip. He turned to start walking towards the stairs to the last child’s room when he spotted the small lump on one of the sofas. Smiling, he made another parchment and started the spell. A surprised noise came accidentally when he saw who it was, awaking the sleeping figure.

Luna Lovegood looked up from the book she had been reading to keep herself up for Santa, or more exactly the Helper who she had seen the Christmas before. Seeing the familiar figure standing not two meters away, she stood up slowly. Seeing the look of shock on his face directed at the paper before him, she smiled dreamily.

Harry was worried and excited for many different reasons. Worried because he didn’t know if she would remember him - she had caught him the year before without his glamour on as he had forgotten in the excitement of his first house - and excited because he actually got to give her something he had wanted to give her anyway.

Snapping out of it, he looked away from the list only to see a smiling Luna standing right in front of him. He smiled back and the list vanished from his hand, “And what do you want little girl?”

“A Long-horned Jack Bunny or a Saber-toothed Black Herring would be nice,” she stated as solemnly as her singsong voice would let her.

Sighing, Harry shook his head and said with a slight smile, “I’m sorry little lady, but we seem to be fresh out of those at the moment. All I have for you is...” Here Harry paused and with a flourish changed back into his un-glamoured self, falling a few inches from his increased height before continuing, “a fourteen year old boy who would like to be your friend.”

Luna smiled, “That will just have to do, I suppose.” Her silver eyes then drifted up towards his black and white hair. “How does your hair keep getting so white?”

Eyes sparkling with happiness, Harry responded, “If everything goes well, I’ll show you how to do it myself.”

-----------------------------------------------------

The next morning, a certain person in Little Huntington awoke to his first Christmas present in over fifty or more years. After ordering some underling to open it and dealing out the customary ‘Crucio’ he went to pick up the top parcel, which had been placed gently on the larger box. Upon seeing this larger box he grew exited, if the person who touched it was keyed in, their magic could be used for one spell at an amplified rate. None had been made since the fifteenth century! His excitement made his hand slip and hit the larger box. This action was promptly registered by the box, recognized the aura and sucked in almost all of the magical power of Voldemort’s core. After judging that it had enough, the box then glowed green before shooting out a shot of energy at every person in the room.

Once everyone’s eyes had cleared, they looked at themselves to see if anything had happened. Seeing nothing, they then looked at each other.

A new recruit was the first one to laugh, but was quickly silenced after a ‘Crucio’ from one of the inner circle.

Every single Death Eater had been called that morning and now every one of them bore a new tattoo. Each one said a different muggle catch phrase with the words ‘Once a Loyal Death Eater’ inscribed under it, right in the middle of their foreheads.

The older Malfoy had, “What am I, fly paper for freaks?”

One Severus Snape forehead told, “If idiots could fly, this place would be an airport.”

Bellatrix Lestrange’s read “Put the lime in the Coke, you nut and drink them both together.”

Her husband’s showed, “I can only be nice to one person a day. Today is not your day, tomorrow isn’t looking good either.”

Even Voldemort was sporting one above the "I am a Dark Lord… Fear me! :)" tattoo, reading, “My therapist says it’s all your fault.”

One random underling’s said it all though, “I became a Death Eater and all I got was this stupid tattoo.”

Voldemort growled in frustration when he saw the writing on the side of the box. ‘Magic to Permanent Personal Tattoos!’ Yelling in frustration, he threw the smaller gift at the laughing recruit.

With a grimice of pain the young man sat up and read the tag before collapsing into another fit of giggles. Right before the spasms of pain from another ‘Crucio’ started, he laughed out: “‘Snake Bait’!”

-----------------------------------------------------

Date Finished: 01-14-2006
Date Posted: 12-20-2006

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