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Chapter 1: Not An Only Child
For hidden_secrets Through The Eyes Of A Child Challenge.
"James, dinner's nearly ready." called Ginny Potter who was standing in the kitchen using her wand to stir a silver saucepan that was bubbling away on the stove.
A small boy wearing a red top and denim dungaree's came running in through the back door and into the kitchen. His face was streaked with mud as was his messy black hair. His formally red trainers were now a lovely shade of muddy brown and there were mud splats up his legs. In his hands he had a small cardboard box, that had holes in the top of it.
Ginny turned around having heard the footsteps, "Oh James, look at the state of you. I think some one needs a wash before dinner."
"No!" James shouted, "I don't like water."
His mother laughed, "But yet you love bath time. Shoes off please Jamesie."
James grinned at his mother before sitting on the stone floor, placing his box down carefully next to him before yanking his muddy shoes off. He pulled his socks off and scrambled to his feet picking up his box, before running across the kitchen.
"No you don't James Sirius. You are not going in the living room like that." Ginny called as she flicked her wand to shut the kitchen door as she made her way over to her son. Ginny undid his dungarees and pulled them off, as well as his t-shirt leaving him in his vest and pants. "Right, daddy will be home soon and dinner is nearly ready." Ginny told him as she conjured up a wet cloth, to wash the mud off him. "Don't disappeare."
James gave his mother an angelic smile and picked up his box, before running off into the dining room with his box.
Ginny went and put the dirty clothes into the laundry room. As she got the plates ready, she could hear James talking to himself in the dining room. Looking down at her stomach, she smiled. In five months time there would be another baby in the house. It was only when she heard front door open that she started to dish up the spaghetti between the three plates.
"James Daddy's home." Ginny called before adding the bolognase sauce on top of the spaghetti, just as the kitchen door opened.
"Daddy!" James squealed in excitement as his father entered the room.
James ran over, in his vest and pants and Harry bent down and picked him.
Harry laughed and said "Jamesie."
Harry made his way over to his wife carrying James and kissed the top of her head."Hello You. Have you told him yet?" He added in an undertone.
"Not yet," She replied, "I was waiting for you, I thought we could do it after dinner."
"Do what?" James announced looking up at both his parents.
"Have dinner, this looks lovely Ginny." Harry hastily replied trying to distract James.
The family of three, soon to be four, sat down together at the breakfast bar, James smiling away because he loved being up so high. After dinner, Harry cleared away whilst Ginny cleaned up James as the sauce had gotten everywhere.
"You really are a messy boy." She mumbled under her breath.
Once everything was tidied away, Harry looked and Ginny and they both nodded in agreement. James was still sat the the bar blissfully unaware of the life changing news his parents were about to tell him.
"James sweetie, mummy and daddy have some news for you." Ginny said with a smile.
James looked up at his parents who were both smiling at him and his eyes lit up. He wondered whether they had got him the new broom that he wanted or something from his Uncle George's shop. He loved it in there, all the colours and different things that occasional went bang or boom.
"Your going to be a big brother." Harry announced, a big smile plastered on his face.
James furrowed his brow and his smile disappeared. "Baby?" He asked. He didn't want a baby. His Auntie Angie had, had a baby not long ago and his cousin Freddie said all it did was cry and poop.
"Yes that's right." Ginny answered as she took off her apron revealing her bump that she had been hiding. "Your new baby brother or sister is in here." She said pointing to her stomach.
"Mummy's fat." James pointed out.
Harry laughed at him, "Yes she is," This earned an icy glare of his wife so he quickly added "And that's because the baby lives in there."
James crossed his arms, "No baby."
Ginny looked at Harry with an 'uh oh' face. "Yes a baby. Isn't that nice, you'll have a baby brother or sister just like Freddie." Harry said trying to pacify his son.
"Freddie no like baby." James mumbled.
"Freddie loves his sister very much James, Just like you'll love this little one. Just think you'll soon have a baby brother or sister to play with." Ginny said looking a little worried.
"Can I go play now." James suddenly said, looking towards the dining room.
"Sure." Harry replied lifting him down and watching him run off to the dining room. James came back out with the box he had been carrying and left the kitchen. They heard him running up the stairs.
Harry and Ginny both exchanged glances. Harry sighed, "Well that could have gone better." he admitted as he ran a hand through his own messy black hair.
James was in the bathroom, with his box, his special box. He bent over and turned the cold tap on in the bath, putting the special cover over the hole at the end.
"No baby, I don't want a baby. Their my mummy and daddy," James muttered to himself."Babies cry and poop, make lot of noise and smell. My mummy, my daddy." He said as he opened his special box into the water. The two creatures inside hopped out quickly. They were both green, one bigger than the other.
"Ribet." It croaked as James splashed water over it. James looked back to the box that his frog's had been in and realised, the baby would go in his room, It had happened to Freddie.
Freddie's bedroom had been painted orange and there were brooms, quaffles, snitches and other things stuck around the room that moved. Then before the baby came, Uncle George and Auntie Angie had painted a larger room red and gold, with snitches, brooms and lions on. Freddie didn't like the new room, he wanted his old one. The baby had even taken a teddy bear from him.
James was not going to let that happen, he liked his room. It was painted red and gold, with Gryffindor banners, brooms and quaffles all around it. No baby was going to go in his room, James thought of his favourite soft toy: a grey hippogriff called Beaky that his uncle Hagrid had bought him. He loved it and could never sleep with out it. The baby was not going to touch his Beaky. James did not like any of these thoughts one bit and sat on the floor and cried.
"Give him time Ginny. I'm sure once the baby's here and he realises he's a big brother, he'll be fine." Harry reassured his wife who didn't seem to be listening. "Ginny are you listening to me?"
Ginny snapped out of it, "Listen, I can hear water." And with that she rushed from the kitchen and up the stairs closely followed by her husband. She soon found the source of water, the bath was slowly filling up and there were two green things hopping around in it. "Arghh!" She screamed, "Harry!, frogs!"
Harry rolled his eyes as he turned the tap off and scooped the frogs up and put them into the jug that had been floating in the bath. Whilst Harry did this Ginny noticed the crying little boy in the corner.
"Oh honey," She said as she picked him up, "What's the matter?" Ginny asked as she carried the crying youngster into his room.
"B-baby, my room. No B-baby in my room." James sobbed.
Ginny sat him on the bed and hugged him tight. "What do you mean, baby in your room?" She asked as she passed him Beaky.
"My r-room," He hiccuped hugging his hippogriff rather tightly around it's neck, "Baby goes in other room."
Ginny finally understood what her son was saying. "Oh Jamesie, this is your room and it always will be. The baby will have it's own room."
His room, the baby was not going to go in his room, James thought.
Ginny then got James washed and ready for bed. It was only when she had finished reading him a story and reassured him once more that the baby would have it's own room did she feel it. She gasped as she felt a sharp prod towards the top of her bump, the baby was kicking.
"Mummy!" James cried as he heard her gasp, crawling from under his quilt towards her.
Ginny smiled at her son, at how protective he was of her. He's going to make a great big brother, and if this is a girl then she's most defiantly not going to be getting boyfriends with James around, Ginny thought.
"I'm fine James," She told him, "It's just your little brother or sister saying hello."
James frowned at his mother. Ginny placed his free hand on her bump where she felt the kick. When she felt it again she looked at James who face was a mixture of confusion, shock and happiness.
"Baby brother or sister." He said.
"What's right." Came Harry's voice.
"Baby's kicking." James said proudly to his father as he entered the room.
"Oh really, it must know that it's big brother is talking about them." Harry said trying to hide a smile. "Say night night to them."
"Night night." James repeated as he went back to snuggle down.
"Night honey." Ginny whispered as she kissed him on the forehead.
"Sweet dreams, my boy." Harry said quietly as he tucked James in.
As they left the room, closing the door behind them, Harry and Ginny both had matching smiles on their faces.
"Baby." James muttered as he hugged his hippogriff tighter in his sleep
*Four months later*
It was a cold November day, the sky was grey and it looked like it was going to rain. Harry and Ginny Potter were due home any minute now with the newest addition to the Potter-Weasley family. Molly and Arthur Weasley were waiting their arrival at the Potter Mansion, along with their grandson James.
James was not happy about the fact that the baby was coming home. All he had heard for the past few months was baby this, baby that. None of his Auntie's payed much attention to him whenever they came over, even when he tried to show them his new pet: A grey bunny called Hoppy.
"James, your mummy and daddy are here." Called Molly as she rushed to the front door.
James reluctantly came down the stairs, when he saw his mother stood in the door he ran towards her. "Mummy!" He cried.
Ginny smiled, "I've missed you baby boy." She told him as she bent down to give him a hug and a kiss.
James put his arms up, "Cuddles."
"Mummy can't pick you up right now honey." Molly explained.
James frowned looking from his grandmother to his mother, "Why?"
"Because she's just had a baby and your a big boy now, your an older brother." Molly told him. "Why don't you go and get the presents you got for mummy and your baby brother."
James nodded and ran off upstairs as Ginny entered the living room, followed by her mother with Harry trailing behind carrying a carseat with a blue blanket covering it. Ginny sat down on the sofa next to her father and Harry placed the carseat in front of her.
They heard the thundering footsteps of James as he ran down the stairs and into the living room, a big grin on his face and two packages in his hands. Slowly he made his way over to Ginny and handed her a package. "For mummy."
Ginny opened it carefully and found a hand made card which read in squiggly handwriting:
Luv you lotts
She smiled and looked at the present, which was in a small blue box. She open it to reveal a silver heart shaped locket, nestled in blue tissue paper. She picked it up and on the back she saw the word 'mummy' engraved.
"Oh James, it's gorgeous." She said as she pulled him into a hug, smothering him in kisses. Ginny put the locket on and opened it, inside it there were three picture: James, Harry and the new baby. "Would you like to meet your new baby brother?" She asked James who was grinning.
James nodded as he wriggled from his mother's lap to sit between her and his granddad. Ginny pulled back the blanket that covered the carseat to reveal a little round face with pair of green eyes blinking up at her. She unbuckled him and took him out, resting him in the crook of her arm.
James looked at the baby fascinated by how small it was, He tried to remember if his cousin Roxy had been that small. "Baby brother?"
Ginny smiled, "Yes this is your baby brother Albus Severus Potter."
"Bus Rus?" James said as he frowned, he hadn't been listening to his mother as he was staring at the baby.
Everyone laughed, "Albus." Harry told his son.
"Yes, that's right James, Albus." Ginny praised her eldest son.
James looked at the small bundle in his mother's arms, he stared into the baby's green eyes which were just like his daddy's, the baby blinked which startled James who jumped a little dropping the other present. Arthur picked it up and handed it back to James who announced, "Mummy, Al-bus has a present too."
"Does he now, would you like to open it for him as he's a bit too little."
James grinned and ripped the paper off revealing another handmade card. Arthur picked up the card and read,
Too my Baby brotha,
Luv you lotts
Your bigg brotha James xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
James picked up the sleepsuit and held it up to show his mother. The left leg and right arm were yellow and the right leg and left arm were red, complete with the Gryffindor logo on the left.
"That's gorgeous James and I think Albus loves it too." She told him indicating to baby Albus who had chosen that moment to make a small noise.
James thought it was brilliant that the baby liked Gryffidoor just like he did. Freddie had lied to him, baby Albus was quiet not noisy and he didn't seem to smell bad either.
That night James watched as baby Albus slept in his little basket, until his mummy had told him it was bedtime. James started to protest as he walked up the stairs, "But Al-bus is still up. He's still downstairs, I'm older than him and he's still up."
"Yes, you are older than him, but as he's only a baby he can't do the things you do." Ginny tried to explain as James ran into his parents room. "Come on sweetie, bedtime."
Ginny scooped him up from off her and Harry's bed and held him close before going into his room and placing him in bed, tucking him in. "Night, Night James."
"But I'm not tired." James yawned.
"I think you are." She said as she kissed him.
James held Beaky tighter under his arm and his eyes closed. Ginny smiled to herself as she left the room and headed back downstairs. The smile was still on her face when she saw Harry asleep on the sofa with a sleeping Albus on his chest.
"Your so like your father." Ginny muttered softly to the sleeping baby as she picked him up from off of Harry.
It was not Albus who stirred, but Harry, "What's the time Gin?"
"Half eight." She said as Albus snuffled in his sleep.
Harry yawned, "Is that all, because I'm shattered."
He was right it, it had been a pretty tiring day: Bringing a newborn home, seeing to Albus as well as four year old James, it was exhausting.
Upstairs in his bed, James was dreaming of riding a Firebolt 2000 broom with his baby brother and dad. His thoughts went to those of the little green eyed baby that had slept most of the day since mummy and daddy brought him home. Freddie was wrong and he, James was right, Albus wasn't that noisy apart from when he cried and that didn't seem to be a lot.
It wasn't long before the Potter household was all asleep in bed.
James' eyes fluttered open and he looked around his room for the noise that woke him.
Clutching Beaky tight, James slid out of his bed and opened his bedroom door.
He heard that noise again and looked around, he knew the noise wouldn't be coming from the bathroom or his daddy's study. James listened closely and headed towards his parents door. He pushed it open and it creaked, the noise was defiantly coming from in there.
James heard the noise and saw the basket that contained his brother, he saw something move inside it, so he moved closer to investigate. Inside the Moses basket was Albus dressed in a pale blue sleep suit, his arms waving around, his cries hurt James' ears.
"Shh!" James whispered with a finger on his lip.
When Ginny woke up having heard her son's cries, she saw James trying to tell Albus to be quiet. "Hey Jamie, what are you doing up?" She asked as she picked Albus up to feed him.
"The baby's noisy." He said just as Harry woke up.
"Come on, let's get you back to bed." Harry said picking up James and taking him back to his room.
James defiantly didn't like Albus now, he was noisy, Freddie had been right.
"I hate the baby." James muttered into Beaky as Harry tucked him back in.
"Night James." Harry said, completely oblivious to what his son had just said.
As James slept he heard the cry of his baby brother every few hours. James pulled the quilt up over his head to block out the noise, maybe he could ask Uncle Ron and Auntie Hermy if he could live with them. Or maybe Uncle George and Auntie Angie, he would have so much fun with Freddie and now Roxy was bigger, she didn't make so much noise so he was fine with that.
"Hate the baby." James muttered again as he fell asleep.
Just over two and a half years ago the Potter's welcomed baby Albus into the world and today Ginny was going to tell them that another little bundle of joy was going to join the Potter family.
"James, Albus" Ginny called as she made her way up the stairs.
James was in his room, playing with a train set. His younger brother Albus was sat fascinated as the miniature Hogwarts' Express went round and round in a circle.
"There you boys are." Ginny said standing in the doorway, hands on her hips. "Come on, daddy will be here soon with Teddy."
James' eyes lit up, his godbrother Teddy was coming over. Teddy was eleven and would be starting Hogwarts in September. James was in awe, he had heard so many stories about the magical castle that he often asked his parents wether it was his turn to go yet.
James ran over to his chest of drawers and pulled out his favourite t-shirt: A red and gold Gryffindor one, that Teddy had bought him for his birthday. He changed quickly and then ran downstairs.
"Mumma up." Came Albus' voice as he tugged on the leg of her jeans.
Ginny picked him and left the room, following James downstairs.
In the playroom James was finding one of his favourite games for him and Teddy to play. James liked Teddy a lot, he didn't treat him like a baby like Auntie Audrey did. Just as James was setting it up Albus came into the room, one hand dragging his blanket behind, the other rubbing his eye.
"Was sa?" Asked Albus , pointing at the table.
"Was sa?" Albus repeated, edging closer to the table, dropping his blanket on the way.
"I said go away."
Albus got closer and he picked up some of the little houses, throwing them across the room and then grabbed a fistful of paper money, waving it around in delight.
"Don't touch Albus!" James cried as he tried to prise the money out of his brother's hand. He was getting annoyed now, why did Albus have to ruin everything. James liked it when he was still in his mummy's tummy, he was quiet in there. No one told him stories about the magical castle at bed time anymore, no one would take him flying.
James had liked it when it was just him, his mummy and his daddy. He didn't want a baby in the house.
"I said Don't touch Albus!" James yelled at his brother, snatching the money from his fist.
Albus rubbed his eyes again and started to cry, before falling down on the floor. James looked at his brother as though to say 'what are you crying for'. James fell down all the time when he was out playing in the garden and he only cried when it really hurt.
Ginny came rushing into the room and spotted Albus sobbing on the floor. She picked him up and his blanket, holding him close and soothing him. "James Sirius Potter what did you do to your brother?" She yelled.
James looked down at his feet and mumbled, "He ruined my game."
"Well there was no reason to push him over, now go to your room."
James looked up and saw his mother glaring at him, so he left the room and went up the stairs. Halfway up them, he sat down and watched his mother.
"Shh, what did Jamesie do to you?"
James wanted to yell and say he didn't nothing but he kept quiet.
Ginny paced back and forth in the hallway with Albus over her shoulder, his sobs still escaping. "Who's a tired boy, come on sleepy byes." She cooed. Slowly Albus' sobs stopped and his breathing deepened.
James ran up to his room as he saw his mother heading towards him. He shut his door leaving nothing but a crack, so he could look out. Ginny went into Albus room, from where he was crouched behind his door James could hear his mother singing the lullaby she sang to him.
James didn't like that, it was his lullaby not Albus'. Not long after Ginny re-appeared, her arms free of a tired toddler. She stopped outside Albus' room, closing the door carefully and quietly before looking down at her tummy. "Lets just hope Jamie knows how to be a better big brother by the time you come along." Letting a sigh escape, Ginny went into her own room.
As his mother came near his door, James backed away and crawled under his bed. He hated it when his mummy was mad at him, but it was all Albus' fault and no one ever believed that.
Later that day, Ginny gathered the boys including Harry who was back from collecting Teddy from his Nanas', in the living room and made sure that Teddy sat in the middle of James and Albus so they wouldn't fight. Harry was sat next on the end next to Albus, looking at his wife with a confused expressions
"I have some news." She announced, glancing down at her swollen belly. "You three are going to be big brothers again and your going to be a daddy again, I'm having a baby."
James' face froze in shock as he put two and two together. Last time his mummy had said that, was when Albus came along. Albus was loud, very loud, especially when he: James was trying to sleep. He didn't get stories any more, as soon as Albus cried his mummy and daddy were gone.
Harry jumped up and hugged his wife, giving her a big kiss causing James to say, "Yucky."
"We're having a baby." Harry whispered.
Ginny nodded, "We're having a baby."
"But baby's are noisy." James said breaking the moment between his parents. "Albus was noisy." He said looking across Teddy at his brother who slid off the sofa and toddled over to his parents.
"Baby?" Albus said.
"Yes, baby. In mummy's tummy." Ginny smiled as she picked Albus up. Albus smiled as well and pointed to his mother's stomach.
That night when Harry put James to bed, he decided he needed to talk to him. Man to boy, Father to son.
James who was been picking a book for his father to read, paid no attention and carried on searching.
"James, can you come here please." Harry said as he sat on the bed. James walked over and hopped up, snuggling down amongst his teddies. "I know you don't always like Albus, but he's your little brother and soon you'll have another little brother or sister. Your a big boy now and you need to protect them when you need to."
James didn't really understand what his daddy was saying except that he was going to get another baby brother or sister, which he didn't want.
"I'm a big boy now." James told his father.
Harry nodded, "Yes you son, which is why when the baby's born mummy might need you to play with Albus or for you to help her with things."
James scrunched his face up at the mention of having to play with Albus.
"Night, Night Jamie." Harry whispered as he kissed his forehead.
"Night daddy." James replied before he drifted off to sleep.
It had been nearly a year since the Potter's had welcomed their little girl, Lily Luna Potter into the family. It was a cold, grey, rainy day and James wanted to go to the park, but his mummy had said no. James was mad at his siblings, the reason that he couldn't go to the park was because Albus had a cold and Lily was tired as she had cried all night long.
"But mummy I want to go to the park." James whined for the sixth time that afternoon.
"James sweetie, I told you earlier we can't go because it's raining, Albus has a cold and Lily's tired. Ginny told her eldest son as she rocked Lily in her arms, trying to get her to sleep.
"But I want to go to the park." James yelled causing Lily to wail.
Ginny sighed, "Can you go play upstairs please Jamie, just while mummy gets Lily to sleep."
James frowned at his mother and crossed his arm, "NO!" He yelled causing Lily to wail even louder. He stomped across the living room and up the stairs slamming his bedroom door behind him.
James jumped onto his bed, "I wish I was an only child, I want my mummy and daddy back." James cried into his hippogriff Beaky. He hated them, mummy and daddy seem to have enough time for him it was all Albus this or Lily that.
Daddy never played quidditch with him or took him flying anymore and all mummy did was watch Lily and Albus was annoying, always trying to ruin James' games.
James lost count of how long he was in his room, but he managed to stop crying when he noticed Beaky was soaking wet from his tears. James crept over to his bedroom door which was open just a crack and tried to listen for his mummy's voice, except instead he heard a soft crying.
Leaving his room James walked down the hall until he heard the crying from behind the door to Lily's room. He pushed it opened gently and walked inside the pink room. Lily was sat in her white cot crying quietly and Albus was stood in front of it making 'shhing' noises.
Albus turned around and when he saw it was James he said, "Jamie, Lily crying."
James looked at his little brother who continued to make 'shhing' noise at Lily and realise he wasn't so bad. Looking around his little sister's room James found her pink bunny that he and Albus had bought her when she was born, lying on the floor not that far from her cot.
Making his way around Albus he picked up the bunny and passed it to Lily murmuring, "Is that what you what."
Lily looked at the bunny, picked it up and threw it down the other end of her cot. Clearly she didn't that then, James thought. He looked around her room to see if there was anything she might want, but James couldn't see anything.
He ran his hand through his hair and spotted the rocking chair, a plan whirred inside his head and suddenly James knew what he was going to do. Making his way over the cream carpet James climbed on the rocking chair and stood up slowly and carefully before cocking one leg into Lily's cot and climbing in.
Lily didn't seem fazed by this but blinked at her brother a few times before whimpering.
"Me too, I wanna go up." Albus announced.
"You can't Albie," James retorted, "Your too little."
"I'm not." Albus protested putting his hands on his hips.
"Fine," James hissed, "Just do as I say."
Albus did as James said and managed to also climb in the cot, crawling over to Lily, James put his arms out and hugged her. Albus then joined in and slowly Lily's sobs stopped and she let out a squeal of happiness. "Mee." She cried, "Bee."
"That's right I'm Jamie and that's Albie"
Lily giggled and then yawned, as she stretched her arms out for her bunny. "Uh-uh."
James passed Lily her bunny and she snuggled closer to him, James led down with Lily by his side and then Albus followed suit and led down on Lily's other side.
Wrapping and arm around Lily and his other over Albus, James realised, he really did like his brother and sister after all. They weren't all bad, sure Lily cried a lot but she was really cute and Albus was annoying but could be useful. With and arm around each other, the three Potter siblings fell fast asleep.
When Harry arrived home, he found Ginny stood in the doorway of Lily's room.
"What's going on?" He asked his wife.
Ginny simply pointed to the cot in reply and at a close look Harry caught sight of his little girl snuggled between her two big brothers, "Looks like James likes being an older brother now." Harry whispered.
It was true what his daddy had said James did like being an older brother and without Albus and Lily he wouldn't have anyone to play with everyday.
A/N I wanted to do both Albus and Lily's births because they are a big point in any child's life especially if you've been an only child and then BAM! you have a sibling. It was kinda hard writing this in 3rd person as I normally stick to 1st but I kind enjoyed it, as well as writing from a child's POV as I haven't been one for a good couple of years.