Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Author's Chapter Notes:
This is in answer to the challenge posted by Chosenfire at Supernaturally Twisted.
Set post book 4 for HP and during s1 for SPN.
Harry sat on his bed, staring down at the parchment he’d spread across the floor. Thanks to the stupid Tri-Wizard tournament he’d almost missed his chance at the assignment but Hermione had quickly jumped in to help, knowing how much it would mean to him. Due to a combined assignment for Potions and Charms he was staring at his family tree going back all the way to the beginning. He hadn’t had the chance to look at it before leaving Hogwarts; he’d just accepted it from Professor Flitwick and then bolted to make the last carriage back to the station.
The potion had been complicated for fourth years and not only Neville had blown his cauldron up but Snape had some of the potion stored so that even if they failed one half they might pass the other. Once they’d brewed it or been given some by Snape they then had to add seven drops of blood and leave it to sit for a week. Then they had taken it to Charms. Each student was given a large piece of parchment that would resize as necessary. The spell was not easy but it was easier than a potion that took three weeks to make. The wand movements hadn’t been all that difficult, it was the Latin that made it hard. But Flitwick was always there to lend a hand. Once they’d gotten the spell down they poured the potion onto the parchment and cast the spell. When done correctly it would cause their family tree to slowly spread across the parchment. Done incorrectly and you joined Neville in the infirmary having burn salve liberally applied and most of your hair regrown.
Harry had still been in the infirmary himself after the events of the maze and Voldemort’s return when they had cast the spell so Hermione had convinced Professor Flitwick to allow her to do his as well. Since his blood was already in the potion anyone could do the spell and it would still work. He was just glad he had passed the potion portion so that she had the option to work with and he at least got half marks for the assignment.
Hermione had never looked at the parchment after she had checked to make sure the spell was working, she had seen his parents names appear and then had rolled it up and handed it in. So he was going to be the first to see the completed history of the Potter and Evan’s families. He had decided to start at the beginning and slowly work his way up to his parents. After all he knew what was at the end, it was the beginning and all that was in between that had him curious.
Between chores, although those had been cut down a bit for some reason, and summer homework it had taken nearly a week but he was now up to his great-grandparents and their assorted siblings. Finding out his Mum was not the first magical person in her family had been interesting, so much for her being a muggle-born. Her great-great-great-grandfather had been a wizard though he had attended Durmstrang and his name had been Evanston, obviously the family name had been shortened since then.
The chart was a lot easier to read than some of the muggle family trees he’d seen in the past and it was even colour coded. A black line under the person’s name meant they were dead and a red meant alive. Muggles had their names in orange, squibs were green and wizards/witches were in royal purple.
Harry had been surprised by some of the people he was related to. Finding out he was Draco’s seventh cousin was not amusing, nor was his very distant relationship to Lestrange. Finding out Sirius was his sixth cousin was brilliant though. It was really scary and kind of gross just how interbred the Pureblood families were.
Harry traced his parent’s names sadly, following the line down from them and to his own before going sideways. He found Aunt Petunia, Uncle Vernon, Dudley and even Aunt Marge, her name attached to Vernon’s, easily. Though it surprised him to see Petunia’s name was green and not the expected orange like his uncle and cousin. Put what had him freezing in utter shock was the extra line linked to both Lily and Petunia through their mother but not their father. His mother had an older half-brother and his name was not underlined in black but red. Harry dropped to his knees and pulled the parchment closer. So Grandmother Rose had briefly either been married to or had at least been seeing a man named Jason Winchester and that relationship had resulted in a son, John. His name was in orange as was his partners although Mary’s was underlined in black. John and Mary led down to two names, Dean and Samuel. Samuel was linked to a Jessica Moore who was dead but had been a squib and beneath them was simply the name Winchester with no birth date, only a death one. Jessica had been pregnant when she died.
Harry was frozen, how could no one have told him? He had an uncle and two cousins and he had never heard a word about them. Sure his cousin’s were considerable older than him but the thought of family... Harry frowned as he studied their names. Dean was about eleven years older than him and was a squib but it was Samuel that really held his attention. The younger Winchester was just over eight years his senior and his name was...in blue? Harry scoured his books but there was no explanation given for that colour.
Now what should he do? Try and find a way to contact them? But what if they knew and simply hadn’t wanted anything to do with him? Then again it was entirely possible they had no clue he existed. No one had ever mentioned his Mum having a brother, even a half-brother, so did that mean his Uncle John had been raised by his father away from the Evans side? There was only one way to find out.
“Aunt Petunia?” Harry watched her closely but she seemed to be in a good enough mood.
“What is it boy?” She sneered but he would not let that get to him.
“I was wondering if you could tell me anything about Uncle John?” He flinched as she dropped the plate she had been holding and it smashed into a million pieces at their feet.
“Where did you hear that name?” To his surprise she wasn’t yelling at him but she had gone rather pale. Worried she was going to pass out he pulled out a chair and gently pushed her into it.
“I didn’t hear it...there was a school project on family trees and he showed up on it along with his two sons.” Harry kept the mentioning of school to a minimum.
“I haven’t thought about John in a long time.” Petunia whispered sadly but then she looked up at him. He fought the urge to fidget as she seemed to weigh him with her gaze. Petunia suddenly stood and headed for the stairs.
“Follow me.” Harry instantly rushed to do so. This was turning into one of the weirdest days of his life.
Harry wasn’t too surprised when they ended up in the attic since it was where Petunia had stored his grandparent’s things before Harry had even begun to live there. He usually wasn’t allowed up there either. Petunia looked through the boxes before finally pulling one out and setting it down between them. On the top, written in a child’s hand was the name John.
“Our mother Rose was seventeen when she met an American by the name of Jason Winchester. He was in London on business and she was spending the summer with a cousin. They hadn’t known each other long when she fell pregnant. Jason didn’t know and returned to America. She married Matthew Evans, her fiancÚ, quickly enough that she was able to pass John off as an early child. Seven years later I was born. When I was three things became...rocky. As he grew older it became more and more obvious that John was not Matthew’s son. They fought a lot and eventually a man came and took John away, I learned later it was his father. Eight months later Lily was born and our parents never spoke of John again but I remembered him. He was my protector and I followed him everywhere. I hated them for sending him away, as much as a three year old can hate or even understand what was happening at the time. You say he has children?” This was not the Aunt Petunia he knew but it was obvious she had loved her older brother.
“Two sons, Dean and Samuel. Dean’s the eldest and is twenty-six, Samuel is twenty-two.” Harry told her, carefully unrolling the family tree and pointing them out. He hesitantly explained what the various colours meant and was surprised how accepting she was that Harry wasn’t the only ‘freak’ on her side of the tree.
“He was even younger than you when his mother died.” Petunia commented sadly as she noted Mary’s death date and Samuel’s birth.
“Are you going to try and find them?” She locked eyes with him and in that instant she really seemed to be his mother’s sister.
“I’m not sure. I was thinking I should at least let them know I exist but I wasn’t sure what the story was between them and the rest of the family.”
“So you could find him?” Petunia pressed and Harry nodded.
“If I give Hedwig a letter addressed to them she can find them anywhere as long as they aren’t hidden our way.” Harry explained and Petunia nodded.
“Look around, these things belong to your family as well. There are some of Lily’s old belongings here too; you may take what you like. I will add a letter to what you send.” With that she was gone, leaving a speechless Harry behind.
“Dude, what the hell?” Dean’s exclamation had Sam staring at the Impala too. He blinked as he saw the snow white owl perched imperiously on the hood seeming to glare at them. Dean had halfway drawn his gun but Sam restrained him.
“You can’t just go around shooting owls Dean, scare it off.” Sam chastised him.
“It’s sitting on my baby.”
“It’s an owl Dean, seriously you can’t shoot it.” Sam rolled his eyes and started walking again.
“What’s an owl doing out here and at this time of day anyway?” Dean grumbled and Sam quirked a smile at his brother. He went to wave an arm at the owl to scare it off only to frown as it extended a leg towards him.
“Sammy?” Dean called in confusion as Sam continued to stare at the avian. Sam took a cautious step closer and then saw the envelope tied to the owl’s leg.
“Dad doesn’t use messenger birds, right?” Sam questioned Dean, who knew with their Dad after all.
“What?” Dean came around the car and joined him in staring. Seeing they weren’t doing anything the owl gave an irritated hoot and shook itself before extending its leg again.
“Think it’s possessed?”
“Wouldn’t it be pecking us or something?” Sam asked back and then shrugged, better safe than sorry.
“Christo.” They waited but the owl just tilted its head, seemingly confused.
“Is that for us?” Sam asked, ignoring Dean’s incredulous look. They blinked as the owl bobbed its head.
“Can I take it?” Sam moved hesitantly closer and the owl hopped towards him awkwardly, leg still out.
Sam carefully untied the envelope and the owl lowered its leg before beginning to preen its feathers. He turned the envelope over and stared in shock.
“Sam?” Dean accepted the sachet Sam wordlessly handed over. On the front in handwriting that looked like it belonged to a teenager was two lines
Dean Winchester, Samuel Winchester
“Looks like not even birds can find Dad if his name’s first but it came to us.” Dean commented as he turned the packet over in his hands.
“Should we open it?” Sam asked and the bird bobbed its head again before taking off from the car only to land on Sam’s shoulder and began preening his hair to Dean’s great amusement.
“I keep telling you to cut your hair Sammy.”
“Jerk, just open it.” Sam grumbled but hesitantly reached up to pet the bird. Dean slit the envelope open with a knife and pulled out what looked like a sheet of parchment and then a piece of stationary.
“Sam call Dad and tell him Aunt Petunia says hi.” Sam’s hand dropped from the owl, much to its annoyance, in shock.
“What?” In answer Dean handed him the papers.
I know it has been years since we have seen each other dear brother. I am well and I hope you are to. I am married now to a wonderful man named Vernon and we have a son, Dudley. I do not know if you know but our mother passed away sixteen years ago so if you didn’t I am sorry to be the one to tell you. I know she never wanted you to leave us but father insisted and she did love him. She loved your father as well, I remember her crying many nights after you both left.
I am entrusting this letter to our mutual nephew. You never knew Lily; she was born just eight months after you were taken away by your father. Her only child, Harry, has been in the care of my husband and I since she died alongside her husband thirteen years ago. Harry found out about you and your children through a school project and began asking questions. I told him about you and he would like to get to know you. Vernon and I are meant to be in France this summer and cannot take him with us; it is my hope that he can spend the time with you. I have never forgotten you and still miss you. I hope this finds you well. Please write back.
“Could this be...”
“Real?” Dean finished and Sam nodded.
“No clue. Not like Dad ever talks about his family.” Dean said and Sam pulled out his phone, unsurprised when their Dad’s went to voicemail.
“Hey Dad it’s Sam. Aunt Petunia says hi, so does cousin Harry.” Sam hung up after that and Dean chuckled.
“He is so going to yell at that message.”
“What does Harry’s note say?” Sam asked as he put his phone away.
“Basically the same thing, except some info on him. Kid’s only fourteen, well nearly fifteen. Orphaned as a baby. Goes to a boarding school in...Scotland? How far did that owl fly?” They both looked to said owl who fluffed up proudly.
“Her name’s Hedwig by the way.”
“You’re one smart owl Hedwig.” Sam told her, going back to petting her. Sam nearly jumped when his phone rang in his pocket. He checked the caller id and then held it out to Dean.
“You left the message Sammy.” Dean said backing away and Sam sighed before answering.
“Hey Dad.” Sam winced and held the phone a bit further from his ear. Hedwig squawked and flew over to rest on Dean’s shoulder instead.
“No, we got two letters. One from her and one from your mutual nephew Harry. She’s hoping you can take the kid for the summer, he’s not quite fifteen.” Sam listened and Dean leaned a little closer to try and hear what their Dad was saying.
“Actually an owl delivered it, apparently she’s Harry’s pet. They’d at least like you to write back.” Sam rolled his eyes at something John said but then nodded.
“See you there.” Sam hung up.
“We’re meeting Dad in Denver, he wants to see the letters himself.”
“Great. What about Hedwig here?” Dean moved the shoulder she was perched on and got nipped for it.
“Um...can you follow us?” Sam asked the owl and she did her head bob thing.
“Then let’s go.”
John watched as the Impala pulled into the parking lot and his boys got out. He blinked as a white owl swooped down to perch on Sam’s shoulder but his youngest merely reached up to pet it. He’d spent the two days it had taken for them to arrive thinking about things he hadn’t thought of in years. Petunia...he’d honestly never thought he’d hear from his little sister. And for them to have a mutual nephew, it meant he had another younger sibling. The fact that he’s never been told angered him but then again he had been mad about the whole mess.
He’d loved Matthew, believed he was his Father but when the man had finally found out the truth John had been tossed aside. He supposed he was lucky his Mother had had a way of contacting his Dad or who knows what would have happened to him. It had taken time to grow close to his Dad but it had happened and the only regret he had really clung to was his separation from his beloved Petunia. She had been a wonderful baby, not the prettiest sure, but she had been inquisitive and happy. She had also stuck to him like glue as soon as he got in the door from school. Seeing her tears the day he had left had broken his heart. Maybe that was why he had been so insistent Dean always watch out for Sammy and why he had argued against Sam leaving for school. He knew what it did to an older brother to be separated from their younger sibling and hadn’t wanted Dean to go through that pain, plus it just hadn’t been safe.
“Hey Dad.” Dean called as they joined him.
“Boys. Who’s your friend Sam?” John stared at the owl which stared straight back at him unblinkingly.
“Her name’s Hedwig, she’s Harry’s. Should have seen Dean’s face when he saw her sitting on the Impala.” Sam snickered and Dean elbowed him.
“She could have scratched the paint!” John shook his head as he ushered them inside. They both took the Holy Water without comment and Dean even held it up to Hedwig who drank thirstily.
“Well she has been flying after us, that has to be thirsty work.”
“Just admit you think she’s neat. How many owls do you know that can fly all the way from England to Washington?” Sam smiled and helped Hedwig onto the curtain rail so she could perch. She ducked her head under a wing and was sound asleep.
“Got the letters?” John asked, enjoying watching the boys bicker without any heat behind it unlike the months before Sammy had left them. Sam handed them over and John sat down to read.
John stared into space once he’d finished. His baby sister, Lily, was dead and he’d never had the chance to know her. Had she ever known about him? And her poor son, being completely orphaned so young. At least Petunia had taken him in, though there was something...off in the way they talked of each other in their letters. It wasn’t overt but he got the feeling they weren’t close. But there was no way he could agree to their request. He could not drag a kid around the country with him and how would he explain what he did anyway?
“So are you going to write back?” Sam asked and John nodded, it was the least he could do.
“You two can write as well if you want. We can even give them a post box address if you want to get to know them better.” John said, wanting the chance to get to know his sister again even if he wouldn’t admit it.
“You’re going to say no.” Sam stated flatly and even Dean seemed to sag ever so slightly.
“Of course I am! What else could I say Sammy? Sure, I’d love to drag our nephew around the country for the next few months. Hopefully he’ll still be in one piece when I send him back? Think Sam! You hated it and you want to drag another kid in?” John tried not to yell, he really didn’t want to fight with Sam after so long of not seeing him.
“It’s only for what, two and a half, three months. We could take a break for that long couldn’t we? Or one stay with him while the others go if an emergency pops up? Rent an apartment for the time. He’s family Dad. Don’t you want to at least see him once?” Sam answered. Dean looked between them, he could see both sides and honestly didn’t know who to side with. Yes he wanted to meet the kid, he was a Winchester, almost and family was everything. But how much danger would that put the kid in?
“Dean? What do you think?” John asked and Dean froze.
“I...I don’t know. You’re both right. He’s family but we’d put him in danger. But what if the demon finds out because he wrote to us and goes after him or Aunt Petunia? I don’t know.”
|Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.
Archive running on eFiction 3.5.x, software developed & maintained by The eFiction Project http://www.efiction.org/ :: Archive design based on original skin designed by Sally Anderson. All Rights Reserved.