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Thread: What would Harry tell his children?

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    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    What would Harry tell his children?

    Okay, I have a question I would like some opinions on.

    In a fic I'm currently writing, some kids are asking eleven year old Lily Luna Potter about things that her father did. They get things grossly wrong as his deeds have been exaggerated with time, but I was wondering, how much would Harry have told his children? I think he would have told them what he did, how he broke into the Ministry and Gringotts, but would he have told them about the Horcrux's giving how Dark they are? And if he did, how much would he want his children to tell others?

    Specifically, in the scene I'm writing, a boy asks Lily if it's true Harry broke into Gringotts with a Goblin army to take back control of the bank from the Death Eaters. Lily says no, and tells him that it was only one Goblin and they went in desguised as other people.

    But would she know/tell the boy why he broke in? It's giving me a lot of grief. One hand tells me that Harry would tell them as he got pretty angry when he was younger that things were being concealed from him by the adults, but something else tells me that Horcrux's are really really Dark and horiffic magic that you wouldn't tell a child.

    Any thoughts on this would be really helpful, thanks.

    Sarah x


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    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Okay, well to start with Albus at the train station doesn't know why people are staring at Harry. he doesn't get what a big deal his dad is in the wizarding world, so I think we can assume that The Trio at the rest of the Weasley family have downplayed things. It is noticeable that when Ron declares that he's famous - all the children laugh, but actually Ron probably was famous as well. (JK says he gets his picture put on a chocolate frog card.)

    I'm not saying he'd have said nothing to them, because they're bound to hear stories from other people and Harry would want them to know the facts rather than other versions. I don't think he'd tell them about Gringotts, breaking into the Ministry, fighting a Basilisk, Quirrell etc etc unless they came to him first and asked. If Harry had told them about breaking into Gringotts, then he wouldn't have said 'because there was a cup that contained a Horcrux,' he'd probably have evaded the reason but explained that he had to get into the bank because there was something there he needed to defeat Voldemort. Lily, and the others, would possibly feel confused about this and want the truth, but he may refuse to elaborate.

    I very much doubt he'd tell any of them about the Horcruxes because that is dark magic that very few people knew about.

    I get the feeling that if he'd told James, for instance, everything about his time at Hogwarts then James would have been itching to get into as much danger. Harry tells Albus that James likes a joke - he's not ultra relieable, is he, so Harry is not going to give him any cause to be more reckless.

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    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    Thanks, Carole, that's all really helpful, and given me a lot to think about!

    Hmm, I'm thinking my scene may need a little editing...

    The kids in my scene are asking whether Harry fought the Basilisk, entered the TriWizard Tournament, and saved the Philosopher's Stone, so would it be reasonable to say that Lily Luna would know that Harry had done those things, but not known the real reasons why, or any of the gorey details?

    I agree with leaving the Horcrux's out of it, you're right, not many people do know about them, as well as the fact that they're evil things.

    Could the fact that Albus demanded why everyone was staring at Harry was down to the fact that he hasn't really been exposed to that kind of thing? He's used to being around people who know what Harry's done and they don't make a big deal out of it, but he's never really seen people flat out staring at Harry.

    Sarah x


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    In terms of what Harry would tell his children, I think of it in terms of the way they teach history to children in primary school. They tend to leave out any details they think will make the story too complicated, they tell it in a very black-and-white sort of way, and the stories tend to be rather sensationalized (though I don't think the stories Harry would tell would need this).

    Anyway, just a bit of food for thought. People tend not to tell children the whole truth on a lot of things.

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    I don't think Harry would hide who he is to his children. If people stare at them every time they go out in public, the kids ought to know why. Anyway, I think Harry would regale his children about his adventures, but as Molly said, in very black-white terms and a bit simplified. For instance, he might just avoid confusing them about Severus Snape's loyalties and only tell them (especially Albus) who he really was when they were older.

    Anyway, from the Epilogue, I was surprised by how Albus couldn't figure out why everyone was staring at Harry. He must have lived a very sheltered life! I guess that would contradict what I said earlier...

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    But we do know that Harry didn't tell all his children every little thing from just the fact that Harry didn't tell all his children everything. It was something he only seemed to tell Albus, at least at that point in time.

    When I wrote what I wrote before, I didn't at all mean it as something he did intentional. It's something people just seem to do naturally, just because they seem to think children won't understand everything. I know Harry doesn't seem like the type who would do this, but then again, I don't think it is something people tend to do intentionally.

    All stories just seem to be simplified for children.

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    Living and growing up in a wizarding family as large as the Weasleys, the Potter children are always going to hear things and I think when they approach their parents, Harry and Ginny will tell them a 'version' of events that's fairly sanitized. They won't want them to think it was all incredibly exciting. I think Molly's point about them simplifying things is a valid one. They'd also skirt around certain things (like the Graveyard and Cedric dying, Bathilda's body hiding Nagini - all the really horrible stuff, he's not going to talk about to young children)

    Okay, here's a real life case for you. My dad fought in a war. I've asked him about his experiences, but he doesn't really talk about it. He talks about 'fighting because he had to', duty etc etc but he's never going to sit down and tell me in great detail about killing people, although I have no doubt that due to his actions, other people died.

    Harry may tell his children the truth about his life and all the incredible things he did at Hogwarts, but he's not going to want to over-emphasize it. (Remember Ron's line after he stabbed the Horcrux about making it sound cooler than it was.') For one thing, as I said earlier, James Sirius is likely to want to 'out-do' his dad. It was hard for Harry to live up to his reputation as the Dark Lord's destroyer when he first went to Hogwarts - his children are going to have an incredibly hard job living up to him.


    I can actually imagine James being rather bored with talk about his dad's good old days at Hogwarts. Oh, and it must be very boring for all the Weasley Next-Gen kids at reunions when they start talking about the great Gryffindor Quidditch team.

    "Remember when Harry swallowed that Snitch!" - Can't you see James yawning and leaving the room.
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    This is a really good question. I am writing a story about Harry's grown children and just assumed they would know these things about his history. I didn't even stop to think about it, though, because I think Sapphire Dawn was right to think Harry would not want to keep things from his kids like things were kept from him. He might not offer up the information, but if they asked him I think he would be honest; if he couldn't tell them - if it was too painful - I think Ginny would. And I think it's even possible that Ron and Hermione would chime in if Harry were being too modest, not to mention George and other friends and families telling tales about their adventures and how Harry saved them all (much to Harry's embarassment, I'm sure!)
    Now, he might put off their questions until they were older; but since James is older than Lily, perhaps he shared what he knew with his siblings and so Lily knows more than she might otherwise know.
    I agree that Horcruxes are Dark magic and no one would want to share that part of the story with the kids. But things like the basilisk and the TriWizard tournament - yes!
    Finally, I think Harry would have worked hard to downplay it all, which is probably why Albus was surprised at the attention Harry was getting at the station. Also, I suspect at that age Albus might be thinking "He's just my dad, what's the big deal?"
    Hope that helps, good luck with your scene!
    ~Gina

  9. #9
    psijupiter
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gmariam
    Also, I suspect at that age Albus might be thinking "He's just my dad, what's the big deal?"
    I agree with this - I think children of famous people can often be like that, even if they do know every little detail. They still just think "oh, it's only dad, who cares?"

    I think as grown ups, the kids would probably know alot of the details. Not about the Horcruxes, like everyone else said, I think Harry etc wouldn't tell anyone else about them, not even the rest of their friends and families. But I think they would slowly learning more and more details about what happened as they grew up, from friends, lessons and their parents.

    Also, Harry was kept in the dark alot by Dumbledore. It's not at all the same situation, but I wonder if because of that Harry would be against keeping things from his children, especially as they got older? Oh, and being lied to by the Dursleys for eleven years, might also make Harry want to be more open with his kids, though definitely in a simplified way.

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