“Sleep,” murmured James, placing a loving kiss to his wife’s freckled cheek. “You got him last night. It’s my turn.”
Forcing himself to leave the comfort and warmth of his bed, James shoved his feet into his house slippers and shuffled his way across the hall. He stopped in the doorway of his son’s nursery. There, in all his naked glory was baby Harry standing with his mouth on the bars of the crib. James cracked a smile. Harry, however was still crying as he munched and crunched on the white wooden bars, fat tears streaming down his unhappy face.
“I’m pretty sure you were dressed when we put you to bed,” yawned James. He moved closer to the crib.
“Harry, what did you do with your-“ he happened to look up as he was yawning and spotted the dragon footie pajamas in question. They were hanging from the ceiling fan. “-pajamas.”
James blinked. “Well done, Son. Sirius would be proud. Though I don’t think your Mother would approve. I did the same thing last week and she still won’t let up on it.”
Harry gave a giggle, his face breaking into a momentary smile before the pain registered and reduced him to tears once more.
James reached down to pluck Harry from the crib. Harry, however, had other plans and refused to unhinge his jaw from the bars. The more James tried to pull the harder Harry bit down. “Harry...” father pleaded to son through gritted teeth,” let...go...please.” Harry did and father and son went tumbling to the floor. James fell on his back protecting Harry at all costs from the fall by holding him out with arms fully extended like they did during play time when they played the “Pretend Harry is a flying dragon “ or as Lily preferred to call it “Pretend Harry is an airplane.” It was Harry’s favorite game; secretly it was James’s favorite game too; secretly Lily knew.
James groaned as he recovered from up and off the floor. Harry giggled. “Enjoy that did you?” He felt tiny hands fiddle with the frame of his glasses and tried his best to ignore it as he searched for replacement pajamas for his naked child.
Hopefully they would stay on for longer than half an hour this time.
Suddenly, he felt tiny teeth bite down on his earlobe. “Ow!” James momentarily glared at the tiny culprit whose bottom lip was trembling violently.
“I know...I know...” he said sympathetically, “I’m trying, Harry.”
Five minutes later a frustrated father was trying to wiggle his thrashing son into a pair of snitch patterned footie pajamas. It took him twenty additional minutes of comforting Harry before he was able to make his way down to the kitchen.
Hopefully he could find something suitable to ease the baby marauder back to sleep. After searching through the entire kitchen, James was able to find a cold pack for Harry to chew on. Harry accepted it without hesitation and settled immediately into his father’s arms. Exhausted and grateful for a moment’s peace, James leaned back against the counter for support. He had dark circles under his tired eyes and his hair looked a mess even for his standards, but the undying love he had for his son reflected in his eyes as he gazed down at the teething one year old in his arms. Hazel eyes connected with emerald green as baby Harry laid his head down on his father’s chest and happily chewed away at the cold pack in relief.
“There, now everything is going to be okay, you see? I’ll always be here when you need me Harry.”