As the sun peaked in through Harry’s window, the child slowly awoke. It was startling to be woken up by dawn as opposed to the rapping of an angry fist against his door. There was a warm weight curled into his chest and a sense of calm that Harry had never felt before. The light on his eyelids felt welcoming, and his eyes slowly fluttered open.
Harry was met with the sight of a sparse bedroom that he had fallen asleep in the night before. He was wrapped in a soft quilt that he hadn’t seen the night before with the Cadet curled into his stomach. He smiled slowly and scritched her behind the ears, earning a thunderous purr from the little kitten. He stayed like that until drifting into the grasp of sleep once again.
When he awoke a second time, Harry was greeted with the sweet smell of pancakes and bacon. His door was just ajar, enough that someone could peak in and for a kitten to saunter out. Reaching for his glasses, Harry’s hand brushed against a small post-it-note on his side table.
‘I heard the Cadet scratching at the door and let her out. Breakfast will be ready in half an hour. You don’t have to join us if you’re overwhelmed, but know that you are welcome. - Jon’ The note was again reassurance that this life would be better. An unconscious smile spread across his face as Harry read the note twice over. He got out of the bed and spread the quilt over the bare bed. After making sure there were no wrinkles, he walked into the hallway and down to join breakfast.
Martin was standing by the stove laughing at something Jon had said. Jon was setting the table for three while talking emphatically about something.
“All I’m saying is that these teenagers are too interested! There is no way that they ALL knew what was on that quiz! They just couldn’t have!” Jon seemed almost frustrated while Martin just chuckled at his vexation.
“You’re just mad that their first question was whether or not you were the Jon that Mels ripped apart during the last episode of What the Ghost.” Harry decided to sit in the stairs with the Cadet and watch as Jon lost his mind over a class of 15 year olds being nosy.
“Exactly Martin! They know too much! I don’t know what to teach them next! Not only that, but the next thing you know, they are going to ask whether I’ve proposed or not. They became infatuated after you came to my class once with my forgotten lunch. Said that I needed someone to watch me with, and I quote, ‘How much I forgot to act like an adult’. It is not only insane, but immensely degrading! Do you have any idea- oh don’t give me that look.” They burst into laughter together making Harry smile at his new parents. He decided then would be a good time to descend the rest of the stairs and join them. With the Cadet in his arms and a good feeling in his chest, Harry walked down the rest of the stairs.
“Oh! Good morning, Harry.” Martin greeted with a smile.
“I hope you slept alright.” Jon added, grinning as well. The smiles were infectsise, one spreading on Harry’s face the farther he stepped into the kitchen.
“I don’t think I’ve slept that well ever. I … thank you for taking me” All his previous courage leaked out of him and was replaced by the sense of gratefulness and freedom. The new senses brought tears to his eyes as Harry did everything to not fall down sobbing with releaf. Instantly, the faces of his new family turned from an easy happiness to a parental worry. Jon placed a light hand on his shoulder and Harry threw himself around Jon yet again.
“It’s alright, Harry. The worst has passed. You are alright.” Martin had walked over and was also wrapping himself around them both. He may have been a smidge shorter than Jon, but he made up for it with a firm figure to hold the three of them together. They stayed like this for a good while, until Harry was no longer crying, but just sniffling into Jon’s jumper. Eventually they separated after a burning smell wafted from the stove.
“The bacon!” Martin jumped back to his position and tried desperately to salvage the burnt meat while Jon chuckled and Harry giggled between hiccups. He eventually gave up, already having enough for a breakfast of three.
Breakfast was a delight with fluffy pancakes and unburnt bacon. It also included good company and some of the best tea Harry had ever had. They discussed plans for the day; a trip to the small village to get Harry some real clothes in addition to their normal groceries and bookstore adventures. A new haircut was also discussed, but after Harry’s shy mention that it would grow back overnight, the subject was dropped.
The table was cleared and the small group migrated into the living room, hiding from the chill under blankets and tight hugs. It was a new day for the small family and they knew this would change a lot. None of them were ready, but they were all eager for the start of a new life. Together.