Being the stand in godfather for the son of one of his best friends could be mildly terrifying. Harry was a boy that Remus barely knew, yet he could see those green eyes begging him with every look to take him home and save him. To tell all those stories of James and Lily and make them real in the mind of their child.
It wasn't a giant secret that Harry's home life wasn't the best, and Sirius had had plenty to say about Dumbledore in private. There had been tons of dreams wasted there when Sirius died, and not all of them were Harry's.
Sirius had so wanted to give the boy a good home and some semblance of a childhood. But death had a tendency to make a fool of all men.
Now it was left to Remus Lupin to take up the slack of all those that came before, the one member of the Marauders that had never once thought about wanting a child. And not just because he was an unemployed werewolf relegated to accepting the crumbs at life's buffet.
No, Remus didn't have a single clue how to be a parent. The very thought of it was terrifying.
So when he went to wake Harry and the boy didn't stir... for one single moment he felt relieved. It was as though an impossible weight had been lifted from his shoulders. His freedom would remain his own.
That moment would haunt him for the rest of his life.* * *
Harry Potter was in a coma. There was a chance that he was going to die.
Whatever Voldemort had done to him had severely depleted his still maturing magical core. The shock to Harry's system was enough that even if he ever managed to wake up, there was a good chance he would have permanent brain damage.
Dumbledore felt tired and old as he stared at the boy lying pale and still on the bed. Harry looked so young. No, he *was* young. And his life might be over before it had a chance to really begin.
And Voldemort was still out there, with no Chosen One to stop him.
"Well, my boy, this certainly has become a dreadful situation," Dumbledore murmured. It had been a long time since he had felt so helpless.
The war was coming, and already the side of Light was down its most important weapon.
Which meant that Harry *couldn't* be the true child of prophecy.
A new resolve went through Albus Dumbledore and he felt his spine straightening. If Harry wouldn't be able to fight, then a different warrior would have to be found.
Turning on his heel, Dumbledore left the bedroom and the once boy hero behind.
There was still a war to be won after all. For the Greater Good...