It wasn't just any ordinary day. No. It was my seventeenth birthday, the 31st of July. Albus Dumbledore had died just weeks before. Severus Snape had betrayed the Order of the Phoenix and had murdered our headmaster, unknowingly in front of my eyes.
I was still alive even when the greasy git had the perfect chance to kill me or better yet, take me to Voldemort himself by the end of my 6th year. Maybe he wasn't as witty and smart as he wanted everyone to believe. He could have easily kidnapped me when I decided to pull a Peter Parker and run after him after he killed Dumbledore, but I'm glad I'm still here: or am I?
Anyway, I was supposed to go on a journey, but it wasn't just any journey. I was supposed to search for Voldemort's fragmented soul. The problem? I had no idea where to start! I banged my head several times against my bedroom wall and made a huge racket in my room, causing incredible yells and screams from my relatives that could be heard in the entire neighbourhood of Privet Drive, but I didn't care. I was already seventeen! It was not like Uncle Vernon would come with a belt to hit me, right?
I had received letters from my two best friends, asking when we were going to start looking for the Horcruxes, but I didn't reply to any of those letters. What was I going to tell them anyway? I had no idea where to look and I had no idea how to destroy Horcruxes if I ever found them! Yes, I had quite a dilemma.
That July 31st I got up from my bed full of resolve. 'Screw the Horcruxes!' I thought to myself. 'I'm going to look for my own soul!'
On impulse, more than anything else, I let Hedwig fly to Hermione and left everything I owned, only taking my wand and my wallet with me. I walked down the stairs without giving my relatives a single glance and went out the door. I immediately located my cousin's bicycle, mounted it, and started my journey. I completely ignored my cousin's screams saying: "HEY! THAT'S MY BICYCLE, YOU RETARD! WHERE THE HELL ARE YOU GOING? MUM! HARRY STOLE MY BICYCLE!"
I had no idea how far I would get on a bicycle anyway, but I continued. I was on a journey to search for my own self, my true purpose in life instead of the purposes bestowed upon me that I never even asked for. I pedaled constantly for hours, not knowing where I was going. At nighttime, I stopped in a park and lied on a bench where I fell asleep. When the morning light hit me, I straightened myself on the bench, rubbed the sleep out of my eyes, and put on my glasses. I was surrounded by homeless men and they were all smiling at me. Some of their smiles had gaps where they were missing teeth. They made thumbs up signals to me. Perhaps they thought I would join them in their strangely led life, but that wasn't my purpose. I was on a journey to find my own soul instead of the twisted maniac's one.
I got on my means of transportation, and went to a convenience store to buy something to eat and bottled water. Then I continued my journey on my cousin's bicycle. I don't know how I did it, but I ended up visiting the sea. I stayed there watching the waves instead of the girls in swimsuits for an entire day. The morning after, I woke up sprawled on the beach's sand. A woman was hovering above me and spoke to some people: "Nothing to fear! He is alive!" I ignored the stares of the people there and went to where my cousin's bicycle was. I had to continue my journey.
When I needed the loo I entered different places to use the public restrooms, but sometimes I ended up emptying my bladder behind bushes when there was no place with a restroom in sight. When I was hungry, I bought food and I kept buying bottled water to keep myself hydrated; although sometimes I depended on the charity of people. There were the people that called me lazy bum or even accused me of being a drug addict, and there were those that gave me water and sometimes even a sandwich as a bonus.
One day a man gave me food and water and then asked me if I wanted to get help. He spoke to me about Christian centers for drug addicts to recover, but I had only wanted a cup of water...
Constantly pedaling was exhausting and just like a car needs gasoline my body needed energy to continue. I visited caves, forests, and all the natural places I could think of.
One day I even found myself fleeing from a wild animal that looked like a leopard, pedaling my cousin's bicycle as fast as I could. Yes, big mistake to enter a forest without checking the warning signs first. I saw the warning sign later stating that some people claimed to have seen roaming big cats that had probably been freed by insane owners. At least it was a Muggle forest and a common animal... If it had been a magical forest, I would have ended up being hunted by vampires, werewolves, trolls, or who knows?
I kept looking for my interior and the true meaning of life, but I seemed unable to find it. One day I even entered a Buddhist temple. I joined the monks there and even dressed like them. During those days, I had free food and water. In exchange for food, I cleaned and helped with everything they needed. They taught me meditation techniques and on some days, I found myself meditating under crystalline waterfalls. Although the water kept me from actually being able to concentrate plus I almost lost my glasses under the strong downpour.
After a few days, I bid farewell to the kind monks and continued on my journey. Meditating had been all right, but I hadn't been able to find my true purpose. Pedaling for hours, I reached a Catholic church. I decided to ask the priest about life, but I ended up confused with things about the holy trinity and Mary. It all sounded nice, but it didn't answer my questions. I tried praying and even confessed. I told the priest in hiding everything about my whole life in Hogwarts. He told me that I was possessed and needed liberation or something like that. He then made me do one hundred Hail Marys that I had to learn there too. I didn't feel any different after I finished the one-hundredth prayer, but the wine they offered to their acolytes was good. Yes, they included me in the wine drinking. Still, I felt the same and thus, I left to continue on my journey.
Days later, I found myself going from house to house with the Jehovah’s witnesses. I have no idea how I memorised their stuff and the scripts needed for preaching a little, but there I was, going from house to house. After a while, I got bored of that and left them also. I still hadn't found my true purpose in this world, other than having to kill a psychotic wizard.
I ended up joining many religions for a while, but kept being unable to find my own soul, but I kept going. I was still on a journey to find myself.
One day, I discovered that I never watched the scenery surrounding me, so I decided to contemplate the houses, the stores, the cars, everything. I was trying to admire my surroundings, but then, my cousin's bicycle's chain broke. I fell on the road, scraping my thigh. Ignoring the pain, I got up and sighed. I couldn't believe the bicycle had decided to break on me. Full of frustration I took the bicycle to the closest place I could see. I could fix it easily with my wand, but as I was on a journey to find myself; I was avoiding the use of magic. I had only brought my wand for self defence in case a Death Eater found me. I sat beside the bicycle, not knowing what to do and fell asleep.
When I woke up there was a police officer in front of me. He asked: "Are you alright, son?" I looked pathetically at the broken bicycle and then back at the policeman. He smiled at me and said: "I might be able to fix that for you, although a broken chain... I have a bicycle at my house that I never really use. You can take it and I'll keep the broken one to fix it later on. Where did you come from anyway? Is your home close by?"
I didn't even know where I was, but I replied: "I came from Surrey."
The officer looked at me incredulously and asked: "All the way to Scotland? And on a bicycle?"
I felt myself getting truly embarrassed, but it wasn't like I had left Surrey the day before... Anyway, that was the end of my journey. The officer took me for a runaway teen and I was sort of deported all the way to Surrey. I was horribly ashamed when I was placed in front of my astonished relatives with the officers explaining how I had been found in Scotland. Of course, my relatives didn't give a damn about where I had been. They simply asked the officers whether I had been found with a very expensive bicycle or not. The officers then informed my aunt and uncle that the bicycle's chain was broken and it had been left behind. I already knew I was in deep trouble for breaking my cousin's bike and indeed, I ended up grounded.
Frustrated after months of fruitless search, I had been returned to Privet Drive against my will and feeling empty, but that wasn't all. My two best friends had been looking for me after learning I had disappeared. The moment they learned I had been found and grounded for a whole year for losing Dudley's expensive bicycle they appeared in Number 4 Privet Drive to interrogate me.
"How could you do that to us? We were supposed to go with you!" said Ronald Weasley.
"Did you find the Horcruxes? Did you destroy them all?" asked Hermione Granger.
"Who says I was looking for the Horcruxes? I have no idea where they are!" I replied.
Hermione and Ron gaped looking aghast. "Where were you then for a whole year, mate?" asked Ron.
"I was on a soul searching trip, of course!" I stated.
"Then you were looking for the Horcruxes, but didn't find them?" Hermione asked confused.
"Nope! I was looking for my own soul!" I said.
"Did you lose your soul?" asked Ron horrified.
"Don't be silly, Ron!" Hermione replied and then turned to me. "What do you mean, Harry?"
"I mean that I was looking for myself, my true purpose in life."
"And did you find it?" Ron asked.
"Nope!" Both Ron and Hermione twitched at my answer.
My friend Ron went pensive then and suddenly said: "Now that I think about it, what's life anyway?"
I considered the question and said: "I don't know, but if I ever find out you two will be the first to know."
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