Disclaimer: I don't own anything save for my own ideas

Summary: In one life, Hawthorn Potter lived a fairly normal life after defeating Voldemort for the first time. In another life, Hawthorn Potter lived a life of adventure with her close friends. The difference between the two lives was caused by having a special ability and a chance meeting with a certain blonde magi. (One-shot)

A chance meeting

For as long as Hawthorn Potter could remember, she could see the pretty golden and black birds. Most of the time, she saw the black ones mostly because they followed and hung around her relatives especially when they focused on her for some reason. Dudley was mostly followed by the golden ones, but when he decided to be bad, they turned a dark grey with black near the edges. It was through the watching the strange birds that no one else could see that she was able to avoid being beaten by her uncle. Sure, it meant she ended up sleeping outside and generally making herself scarce, but that was okay since the golden birds kept her safe and relatively healthy. It was during one of these events that she met Yunan the Wandering Magi and started on the path to her destiny.

Hawthorn followed the golden birds from Number Four to one of the parks. Marge was visiting again and had brought Ripper along which meant getting out of the house before the dog managed to tree her. She was probably going to sleep in one of the older trees regardless, but it would be her choice not because a dog decided it wanted to rip her apart. It was a wonder that she wasn't scared of dogs because of that overly aggressive inbred mutt. She paused as the golden birds began to flock towards someone not far from her. Normally, she would've ignored whoever it was, but the birds never flocked to anyone other than her. With that in mind, she focused on whoever it was.

The golden birds flocked around a feminine looking boy that couldn't be not much older than her 10 years. He had long braided silvery blonde hair with a forest green hat that looked a lot like it belonged to one of those old school magicians before top-hats and the like became popular. Bright eyes almost the same shade of green as hers only lighter and more like a forest green than the cat-like emeralds she saw in the mirror. He wore white and green clothes that were the same shade as his hat though they weren't something you normally saw around England. In his hands, he clutched what looked like a fishing rod only with a pair of feathers attached to the tip and a spear-like bottom.

Hawthorn tore her eyes from the stranger when she saw grey versions of the bird approach and looked behind her to see Dudley. Without sparing another thought to the strange boy, she ran towards the nearest tree that the golden birds were surrounding and climbed up until she was hidden by the leaves. Once she was safely covered, she turned her attention to Dudley and his newly appeared gang. They stopped near the base of the tree looking a bit confused with Piers asking, "Didn't you say that Potter went this way, Dudley?"

"I swear I saw her come this way," Dudley replied with a frown.

"You said that last time and we ended up finding out she was in the library," Piers complained with a scowl on his rat-like face.

Gordon seemed to catch sight of the unfamiliar boy and pointed him out, "Who cares about Potter? There's fresh meat over there, I've never seen that kid before and he looks a bit too girly."

Hawthorn frowned as the boys quickly began to zero in on the strange boy. On the one hand, she could continue to hide and let someone else get the stuffing beaten out of them by the gang. On the other hand, the boy really didn't deserve it just because he wandered into this park when she was finding a place to stay for the night. Looking at the strange boy, she saw the way his eyes followed the birds and made a decision that was likely going to cause her a bit of pain. Hopefully, he would stick around long enough for her to find out how he was able to see them.

Dropping down once the boys were far enough away to give her a head start, Hawthorn picked up some rocks and threw them at the boys. While her accuracy wasn't the best since she didn't have the correct prescription for her glasses, she still managed to hit them hard enough to make them angry and turn to focus on her. She offered the boys a mocking grin when they turned to her with scowls and angry shouts, "Hello, Boyos. Looking for little ol' me?"

"Potter!" Piers screeched at her, "What the hell was that for?"

"Trying to hurt someone that doesn't deserve it is a very bad thing to do, Rat-face," Hawthorn replied as she got ready to run while praying that she could find a place to hide before they got her, "I think Mummy dearest would be angry if she found out about your after school activities,"

Dudley's cheeks turned pink as he shouted, "Forget the pretty boy! Get her!"

With that, Hawthorn took off running as fast as her feet could take her. Thanks to all the times Dudley and his gang played 'Potter Hunting', she was faster and could run for longer than any of them.

When they finally gave up, Hawthorn followed the golden birds to another tree deeper in the park and climbed it before practically collapsing on her new perch in exhaustion. The fact that she hadn't gotten much to eat for the last week or so had made it hard to keep from getting caught. Considering the fact that Vernon and Petunia were likely going to beat her bloody for daring to throw rocks at 'Normal folk', she doubted that she'd be eating for a little while unless she managed to nick something decent from a trash can. She wondered about the boy she'd seen earlier and hoped that the idiot gang didn't go after him again. Closing her eyes, she decided to take a nap for now and go looking for food when she didn't feel like passing out. Before she could fall asleep, she heard, "Are you really going to sleep in a tree?"

Hawthorn jolted as her eyes snapped open and she almost fell from her perch. It was only instinct that kept her from plummeting to the ground. Once she was assured she wouldn't fall, she looked around for the source and found the boy staring at her from atop the fishing pole she'd seen earlier. Staring at him as she wondered if she was hallucinating, she asked, "How are you floating?"

"I'm using my magoi or, what the wizards call, magic," The boy answered, "My wand is my medium,"

Hawthorn would have said Magic or 'Magoi' didn't exist if it weren't for the fact she could see the golden, black, and grey birds that no one else could. Instead, she pointed out, "That's a fishing pole not a wand."

"It's a magical focus and most are called wands," The boy looked at her in curiosity, "I'm surprised you didn't say magic doesn't exist,"

Hawthorn snorted as she shifted into a more comfortable position to talk, "Considering the fact you're clearly floating, I can't say magic doesn't exist. Not to mention weird stuff happens around me that can't be explained,"

"Like what?" The boy's curiosity seemed to grow at her words.

Hawthorn gestured to the glowing birds flocking around them, "I can see the golden birds."

The boy looked shocked at her words, "You can see the Rukh?"

"The R-what?" Hawthorn's eyebrows scrunched up, "I just call them birds,"

"They are birds, but there a lot more than that," The boy shook his head, "I haven't met anyone that could see the Rukh in a very long time. How long have you been able to see them?"

"For as long as I remember," Hawthorn held out her hand and watched as a few landed there, "They help keep me safe,"

The boy was silent for a few minutes before saying, "My name is Yunan and I'm the Wandering Magi."

"My name is Hawthorn Potter and I'm the confused girl that can see pretty golden birds called Rukh," Hawthorn replied earning a laugh from Yunan.

Yunan ended up sticking around Surrey for over six months which was the longest he'd stayed in one place other than the Great Rift he'd called home. The reason being the cautious child known as Hawthorn Potter who could see the Rukh. She had more magoi in her body than he had felt from most of the magicals that now inhabited the earth after the Cataclysm. If he had to put his finger on it, he'd say that she had as much power as Sinbad did back when they first met. Considering the fact that Sinbad was a singularity, he knew his interest was well warranted.

During his six months in Surrey, Yunan observed Hawthorn's day to day life without her knowledge outside of the times they met up when he offered to tell her stories. He found many things abundantly clear to him due to his observations. Hawthorn was abused and it was only due to the Rukh's interest in her that she hadn't died yet. She was a skilled thief for her age which was unsettling though he understood that she needed those skills to keep herself fed and clothed. She wasn't as charismatic as Sinbad had been when he first met the purple haired boy, but that was mostly due to the fact she needed to fade into the background to survive. She was a survive with a strength of will and inner fire that would make her a great leader someday if she was given the chance. And lastly, her scar contained something absolutely foul within it that she was lucky to not have Fallen.

Yunan knew what a horcrux was just as any magi worth their salt would if they'd lived as many lives as he had. It was a barbaric practice that left him even more ill than the thought of slavery did. To create a horcrux required premeditated murder and a small ritual, you literally split your soul in half. He wondered how one could have possibly been tied to Hawthorn much less not corrupt her into Falling. It was only when Hawthorn took a nap that he was able to properly discover the reason why. Blood magic was something he was familiar with if only because some aspects were useful if done right. A sacrificial blood protection formed through runic ritual and the death of the caster protecting someone they cared for so much they'd be willing to die for it. By the look of it, Hawthorn's mother had been the castor which made him want to cry. Based on the strength of the soul shard and the size of it, whoever it was had split their soul enough to turn in unstable thus ruining any chance they might have had to join the Rukh if the creation of the first Horcrux hadn't done it.

Yunan knew of ways to remove a horcrux though most of them were something he wouldn't consider since they would have left Hawthorn dead. Despite the limited time they'd spent together and the fact she reminded him of Sinbad, he wasn't about to let her die even if there was a chance she'd come back. It was because of how much she reminded him of a more jaded, yet younger and less manipulative Sinbad that he decided to do something that hadn't been done since Alexander the Great and King Arthur convinced the younger magi they deserved a chance to become the first King Vessels since the Cataclysm.

"I'm going to summon a dungeon and you're going to conquer it," Yunan announced not long after they stopped practicing magoi manipulation for the day.

The water Hawthorn was drinking went down the wrong pipe at his words. After they managed to clear her throat and she caught her breath, she struggled to keep from screeching, "What?!"

"I'm going to make you a King Vessel, or Queen as the case is," Yunan replied with a warm smile.

"But I thought there haven't been any since the Cataclysm," Hawthorn protested as she set down her water.

Yunan shook his head as he shifted his finish pole to settle better against his shoulder, "You're mistaken, Hawthorn. I only said that I hadn't had a King Vessel since the Cataclysm. Two of the younger magi that have popped up since the Cataclysm created a Kings Vessel. First was Alexander the Great and the second was King Arthur."

Well that just put things into prospective, but it still left her confused, "Why me?"

"You remind me of a younger more jaded and less manipulative Sinbad only you haven't really faced death before," Yunan replied as Hawthorn picked up her cold water again as the slowly growing late spring heat began to hit her again, "I've grown fond of you as a friend and I know you won't misuse any Djinn you may win over. I'm also doing it because I do not wish to see you Fall or die needlessly,"

"What do you mean by that, Yu?" The nickname she'd given him two months after he'd first appeared fell from her lips as she looked at him.

Yunan looked guilty and saddened as he stared back at her, "You have what's known as a Horcrux, a soul piece, in your scar," Hawthorn felt sick to her stomach and violated at those words, "If it weren't for the sacrificial blood protection your mother used before she died, it would have made you into a Fallen."

Hawthorn reached up to her scar, "How did this happen?"

"I'm unsure though I know for a fact it occurred on the night your parents died," Yunan sighed softly, "I don't know who would have been desperate enough to escape death via splitting their soul," He tightened his grip on his wand, "I do know that it was accidental if only due to how small it is, it's power, and how unstable it is. There are many ways to remove it, I won't even think about most of them due to the fact they'd end in your death,"

One thing stuck out at her though Hawthorn was still thinking about what he'd said so far as carefully as possible, "Does that mean Petunia and Vernon had been lying about how my parents died?"

"It's very likely," Yunan looked at her in concern, "Are you alright?"

Hawthorn shook her head as she leaned back against the rough bark of the tree behind her, "No. I feel sick to my stomach and violated at the fact I have a piece of someone else's soul inside of me. I'm in shock over the fact you want to make me a King Vessel especially when I remind you of Sinbad...Yunan, are you sure there isn't another way?"

Hawthorn, a King Vessel? She couldn't see herself as anything regal or Queen-like. She was an abused girl that took to steal because she would've died if she hadn't. What about her could possibly qualify her for something like that? The fact that she reminded Yunan about Sinbad only made the fact he wanted to make her a King Vessel kind of insane. After all, Yunan had told her about Sinbad and how the purple haired boy he cared for turned into the manipulative asshole he'd become. She knew that Sinbad had good qualities and did things for a good reason. Look at what he'd managed to do during his life, he had done many good things, but the man he'd become left a bitter taste in her mouth.

Yunan smiled sadly at her, "I made my mistakes with Sinbad and at the end of things, I made my peace with him. I doubt you'll end up doing everything he did which is the main reason I'm giving you this chance. Besides," Yunan's smile lightened up, "You're more than worthy to become my first King Vessel since the Cataclysm and to be honest, I miss it."

Seeing the belief in Yunan's eyes, Hawthorn felt the need to make his belief into reality. Yunan was the first friend she'd ever made that hadn't been chased off by Dudley or her relatives. The fact he was willing to put himself on the line for her made that need grow stronger. She closed her eyes and thought about it carefully before nodding, "Alright, but can I make a request?" Yunan hummed softly, "I don't want whatever Djinn to be Baal or any of Sinbad's old Djinn. If I'm going to do this, I want to be as far from Sinbad as possible even if they were strong Djinn."

"I can do that," Yunan was giving her a pleased smile, "I'll make preparations,"

"Yunan, how exactly am I going to go through the Dungeon you'll summon?" Hawthorn asked as she thought about what would happen, "Unlike back then, people will notice if I'm gone for months at a time and while my relatives don't give a crap, other people will. There's also the fact that I don't exactly have any combat experience and limited amount of magical knowledge, I don't think I'll be able to fight anything we come across. People will definitely notice a giant tower or something popping up out of the blue. They'll likely gather around the edges and wait for something to come out,"

Yunan was silent for a few moments, "I'll think of something."

Hawthorn eyed him for a moment before asking, "You're leaving, aren't you?"

"For a few days to prepare things," Yunan offered her a reassuring smile, "I'll be back before you know it and we'll start you off on the path to become a Dungeon Capturer and a King Vessel,"

If it had been anyone other than Yunan, Hawthorn would have called them a liar. Everyone that tried to help her for whatever reason left. The other kids that tried to protect her from Dudley were either forced to move away by their parents or lost the will to try when Dudley beat the shit out of them. The teachers that tried to get her away from the Dursleys when they noticed the abuse were fired and the evidence disappeared. The teachers that still tried to help her by giving her food or places to hide were forced into diffrent schools for being too close to their students. Maybe it was the tales Yunan told her or the fact he was willing to teach her that did it, she didn't know which, but she knew that he would come through with it.

Hawthorn kept up her magoi practice and managed to improve on it while the blonde was gone. She turned out to be pretty good at Wind and Life magic manipulation though it was tiring even when the weather cooperated. The most she could do at the moment was slow her landings when she jumped down from high perches or help the plants around her grow stronger. She did manage to heal some of her smaller cuts and scratches via Life magic manipulation though it was tiring when she did so. Yunan promised that she would be able to do more with practice and knowledge about how the human body worked though he got embarrassed when she asked him to teach her though she wasn't exactly sure why.

While waiting for Yunan, Hawthorn visited the library and began to look up something other than the books assigned to her during class. She read some of the scientific books with a couple of dictionaries to help with the more difficult words. She began to understand the wind and how it worked better which helped improve her Wind magic manipulation. She looked up things about plants as well, the things needed for them to grow, and even diffrent plants around the world. She ended up looking up other countries and compared a world map to the before Cataclysm one Yunan copied for her. The world really was different and she wondered if some of the island nations, like Sindria, were somewhere still in the world which she was definitely going to ask Yunan about at some point. As much as she read about useful things, she also ended up reading the fantasy books that the library had available mostly to give her tired mind some form of a break.

Yunan returned a week later with a bag of supplies and a warm grin on his face.

Hawthorn looked at the bag of supplies then back at Yunan, "I guess this means you have everything set up?"

"Yup!" Yunan held the bag out to her, "You'll need this,"

Hawthorn took it and was surprised by how little it weighed, "This is pretty light considering the fact we're going Dungeon conquering."

Yunan snickered at the look on her face, "One of the good things about how the 'wizards' have developed since the Cataclysm has led to magics that allowed almost infinite space and the ability to turn things feather light among other things."

Hawthorn didn't quite believe him, but chose to give him the benefit of the doubt. Considering the fact Yunan was pretty much an expert of creation magic, she wasn't too worried. As the bag was a messenger backpack, she pulled it on over her right shoulder before saying, "Okay, so that takes care of supplies and you've likely already raised the Dungeon. The only thing missing is how the hell are we going to explain me missing the last month of school and however long I'm likely going to be gone?"

"Let's go speak to your relatives, I'll have everything settled and then we'll be off," Yunan's smile and the look in his eyes didn't match up.

Somehow, Hawthorn didn't think this would go in her relatives favor. Did she really care? No. Yunan wasn't the type of person to kill anyone and her relatives deserved to get the piss scared out of them sometimes.

By the time Yunan finished speaking with her relatives, Hawthorn decided that she was never going to piss off Yunan. She didn't think he had it in him to hold someone upside down with magic while explaining in an overly cheerful voice why they were going to cover for her absence until she got back. They, Vernon especially, deserved it for calling Yunan those stupid names, threatening him, or looking at him like he wasn't even worth liking their boots. She was definitely going to learn how to mimic his use of magic if only to keep Vernon from beating her again. After they left, Yunan transported them to a place that made sweat break out on her skin almost immediately upon landing.

The air was as dry as a bone and the sun blindingly hot above. The area around them was covered in dark yellow sand with little in the way of flora or fauna. A glance at the sky showed not a cloud in sight. Hawthorn turned to Yunan while trying to ignore the sweat beginning to soak through her clothes, "Yunan, where in Solomon's name are we?"

Yunan didn't look the least bit affected by the change in temperature. He smiled lightly, "The Gobi Desert if I'm not mistaken. Not to far off from where Qishan once rested."

"Qishan..." The name rung a bell, "That's the oasis city that Aladdin, Alibaba, and Morgiana first met, right?" Yunan nodded with a light grin, "That's actually kind of cool, I guess the remnants of Amon's Dungeon might be there too if it hasn't been worn away already,"

"Perhaps, but for now, you should look forward," Yunan advised her.

Doing as Yunan said, Hawthorn looked forwards and found her eyes widening at the sight of the gigantic sand dune rising out of the ground. A small fleet of steps appeared soon after and led up to a large ornate door. On either side, a pair of griffons glared at anyone daring to walk closer. She looked back at Yunan as the rukh fluttered around them, "Who's dungeon is that?"

"That is for me to know and you to find out," Yunan replied and gestured to the door, "Shall we?"

Hawthorn nodded and began to walk up the steps with Yunan following her, "Yunan, how am I supposed to protect myself? You won't always be there to protect me."

"For now, you should be able to protect yourself just fine with your magic. Once we're done here, we'll find a weapon that suits you though I'm not going to be a good teacher," Yunan replied with a sigh, "I really don't enjoy fighting with weapons,"

"Anything is better than nothing," Hawthorn reached the top of the stairs and walked towards the doors, "Just push them open and we'll be inside?"

"Yes," Yunan walked beside her, "Are you ready, Hawthorn?"

Hawthorn paused at the doors feeling a bit nervous. She looked at Yunan, "You're absolutely sure that you want me as a King Vessel? I don't want you to regret it."

"I'm sure, Hawthorn," Yunan's smile was reassuring and his eyes filled with warmth that had never been directed at her by anyone before.

Hawthorn took a deep breath and turned back to the door of the Dungeon, "Then I guess there's nothing to do other than to go forward."

With that, she pushed the doors opened and entered the dungeon.

Hawthorn looked around the yellowish grey stone chamber she'd woken up in before focusing on Yunan as the blonde said, "I forgot how disorientating entering a Dungeon can be for the first time."

"Yunan," Hawthorn pushed herself up and looked around them, "What do we do?" The chamber was bare of everything save for some torches that barely lit up the area, "I don't see any doors or exits,"

Yunan looked around with a slight frown before looking upwards. Hawthorn followed his gaze and stared at the gigantic hole in the roof of the chamber. She looked back at Yunan as the he said, "No where to go save for up. Give me your hand, I'll give you a lift."

Hawthorn walked over to him and offered her hand. Yunan took it as he used his fishing pole to lift them up. She tightened her grip on his hand upon feeling her feet leave the ground and swallowed heavily as they began to rise up. When they reached the opening, Hawthorn covered her eyes as bright light shone down on them. When it became bearable, she moved her arm and gasped at the area around them. Spires made out of the yellowish grey stone as the chamber they landed in littered the area around them, the ground was covered in sand that shifted with every strong gust of wind, and bird-lion-like creatures made of what looked like hardened sand flew through the air filling it with strangely beautiful cries. She spoke while Yunan set them down on solid ground, "What are those things?"

"Gryphons made of sand from the looks of it," Yunan looked around the area they were in, "I'm not sure where we're supposed to go,"

"Pick a direction and run with it?" Hawthorn suggested as she watched one of the larger gryphons fly past causing a powerful gust of wind that threatened to tear her from the ground.

The Dungeon Yunan had summoned was dangerous not just because of the powerful winds that threatened to tear them from the ground or because of the gryphons that ruled the sky. The sand on the ground was loose enough that you could sink beneath the surface if you put so much as a foot on top of it leaving only the crumbling spires to walk on. Most were close enough together that Hawthorn could easily jump to get to the next one without needing Yunan's aid, she had to rely on Yunan to keep from plummeting to her death or getting torn to shreds by the vicious gryphons that protested the humanoid beings presence. She found herself enjoying the dangers if only because of the adrenaline rush and the knowledge that she wasn't in danger because of her relatives. She knew that Yunan would probably be worried about her mental health if he knew that she was enjoying it so much, but he probably worried about it anyway considering the fact he knew of her home life. When they paused to rest, she asked, "Where do you think the doors are?"

"I'm not sure," Yunan admitted as they leaned against one of the spires that saw limited gryphon traffic, "Every Dungeon is diffrent. I will admit that this one is truly unique," Hawthorn pressed herself closer to the rough rock of the spire as a powerful gust of wind ripped through the air, "Not even Zepar's dungeon the last time I summoned it was so complex and he can be very tricky,"

Hawthorn frowned as the wind died and she moved closer to the edge of the spire, "Maybe we're missing something or over thinking it," She looked at Yunan, "Without giving away too much, what is this Djinn like?"

Yunan was silent for a little while leaving Hawthorn to observe the area around them. She looked at the sky and noticed the almost endless expanse of golden tinted blue that made her heart ache with want. The ability to fly was something she'd always wanted even more than parents. She wanted to be able to fly as high and for as long as she wanted without being told what to do. She watched the gryphons fly around and smiled a bit. They were true masters of the sky in ways that only other winged creatures such as dragons could compete. She watched some of them dive towards the ground only to swoop up at the last second. She frowned when she noticed a small ripple pattern form in the sand only to disappear moments later. Before she could really focus on it, Yunan began speaking, "She is a free spirit right up there with Paimon."

"Does she have a preferred type of King Vessel?" Hawthorn asked glancing towards Yunan.

Yunan nodded, "Courage."

"Courage," Hawthorn muttered looking back at the gryphons, "Yunan, look at the gryphons. Not the ones slowly flying around, but those that are diving,"

Yunan moved beside her and watched as the gryphons dove towards the ground before pulling up at the last second, "I'm not quite seeing the point."

"Think about it," Hawthorn looked at him, "Courage isn't the absence of fear, but acting in spite of it," Yunan's green eyes showed comprehension, "Everything fears falling to their deaths, but only birds have the courage to fly despite that fear due to their wings," Hawthorn looked back at the sand, "Yunan, I may be a bit insane in suggesting this, but I think the Djinn wants to see just how much courage her tentative King Vessels have," She watched it ripple as a gryphon brushed a clawed paw against it, "I know it's a long shot, but I have a feeling that this is what needs to happen. If it fails, I'll probably get hurt or die, but it's better than wandering around this Dungeon endlessly,"

Yunan was quiet for a few moments before sighing, "It's completely suicidal and I don't like it," She glanced at him, "You're going to do it regardless, aren't you?" Hawthorn nodded, "Very well."

Hawthorn pointed to the spot where the gryphons had been touching the sand, "Let's go to that spot."

It took them thirty minutes to get to the closest spire without getting spotted by the gryphons or tossed around by the wind. Hawthorn stared at the sand below and felt her stomach drop a bit as she stared down at it. Yunan spoke as she shifted a little nervously, "Hawthorn, I don't really like this."

"Do you have a better idea?" Hawthorn asked him, "Since I don't see either of us wrangling a gryphon and using it to fly around without getting killed,"

Yunan shook his head, "Not really."

Hawthorn took a deep breath, "Let's pray this works then."

With that, Hawthorn jumped off the spire and felt weightless for a few wonderful seconds as she wondered if maybe this was what it felt like to kiss the sky. Gravity took hold of her and she began falling to the sand. Instead of looking at what might actually kill her, she looked around herself and smiled a bit as her heart pounded as quickly as a humming bird flapped its wings. The gryphons flew through the air with one diving beside her. She looked at Yunan who was following her with worry in his eyes and smiled at him. It was as the gryphon beside her pulled up that she felt the barest brush of something beneath her feet only for it to part. She felt something slowly begin to slow down her fall into something more controlled as she sank beneath the sand with Yunan following her quickly. She closed her mouth and held her breath feeling the brush of sand against her body. When she finally came to a stop, she landed inside what looked like an ante chamber with a large door in front of her. Yunan landed beside her moments later, "Looks like you were right."

Hawthorn hummed lightly as she let herself drop to the ground, "We're alive."

"Yeah," Yunan looked at her in concern, "Are you alright?"

Hawthorn jerkily shook her head feeling a bit numb, "I-I think I'm going into shock."

After Hawthorn calmed down and didn't feel like she was about to pass out, Yunan got them out something to eat and drink from the bag. Hawthorn ate slowly as she glanced at the door, "So that's it, huh?"

"Yes," Yunan looked at the door with a wry smile, "Every King Vessel I've ever had has gone through those doors either with me or with someone that would one day become a trusted House Hold Vessel,"

"Did it ever get any easier?" Hawthorn asked him, "Having to find King Vessels up until the Cataclysm?"

Yunan shook his head, "No, it didn't. I always see the past King Vessels I chose, their lives as I witnessed them, and their ends. I see each face and remember every interaction we shared. In most cases, I see the ones they reminded me of with a startling clarity that it's like having them beside me once more."

Yunan looked as if the world was sitting on his shoulders and his youthful face covered in the shadows of ages. Hawthorn could see in this one moment just how heavily his many reincarnations weighed on him. The amount of people, King Vessels, friends, and families he had to have lose with each one. The kind of wounds that must litter his soul despite the fact he hasn't fallen. The pain he must feel knowing he hasn't rejoined the rukh and likely hasn't seen anyone of those he probably still cared so deeply for. The knowledge of so many lives that must weigh on him. And she wondered just for a moment, why he kept going with everything that has happened to him.

She stayed silent for a little while both to gather her thoughts and to allow Yunan a moment to gather his own. When she finished eating her food and drinking her water, she broke the silence that had fallen over them, "Do I remind you of him?"

Yunan looked at her with a sad smile and nodded, "In a way, but you don't have a House Hold Vessel prospect with you."

Hawthorn rose to her feet and set a hand on Yunan's shoulder with a warm smile on her face, "I'm glad that I can remind you of him before he became that person," Yunan reached up to touch her hand and she squeezed his shoulder, "Are you ready to take the dive, Yunan?"

"I should be asking you that," Yunan murmured as he stood up, "Thank you,"

Hawthorn felt the faint stirrings of confusion, but pushed them aside with a smile, "Let's go then, I want to meet the Djinn you summoned."

They headed towards the door and place their left hands on the marks in front of them before pushing forward with a cry of, "Open!"

Hawthorn looked around the city they flew over it and commented, "There's a strange kind of beauty here, a tragic one, but still beautiful."

"Each city is the same, yet diffrent," Yunan said as they flew over some of the taller buildings, "You could spend a life time in one and still find something new about it,"

Hawthorn sighed softly, "To think that they became a graveyard, it's a shame."

"It is," Yunan agreed with frown.

Soon enough, they reached the next door and pushed their way inside. The treasure room wasn't quite awe-inspiring, but that would change once the Djinn woke up. Hawthorn headed towards the alter in the center of the room where what would probably be a magnificent long bow by historians lay with an star engraved into its center. Glancing back at Yunan, she sucked in a deep breath before brushing her fingers against the star. Immediatly she was sent stumbling back as a rush of light and wind engulfed the bow. When she could finally stop herself from moving, a feminine voice called out, "Who shall be my King?"

Hawthorn uncovered her eyes not really knowing when she covered them and found her eyes widening as she stared at the blue Djinn floating by the bow. She was a wild beauty with long wind swept hair filled with feathers. Wicked looking claws tipped her fingers and massive wings stretched out of her back, she had a pair of lion-like ears and a slim tail swishing softly behind her. She wore nothing save for thin wisps of fabric covering the important parts. Hawthorn snapped out her shock as Yunan spoke, "Reti."

"Yunan!" The Djinn's eye were cat like and had feathers against their edges, "It's been so long!" The Djinn's tail fluffed up a bit as she beamed at him revealing a set of fangs, "Oh, you look just as you did the last time you summoned my dungeon," The Djinn's head tilted slightly before focused on Hawthorn, "Oh, aren't you the most adorable King Vessel that I've ever seen,"

"I'm Hawthorn, Lady Djinn," Hawthorn introduced herself, "May I know your name?"

"A charmer! You'll be a fun Queen Vessel if you pass my last test," The Djinn replied as her tail swished lightly, "I am Reti, the Djinn of Boundless Courage and Fierce Loyalty,"

"A pleasure to meet you, Lady Reti," Hawthorn smiled at the Djinn liking how energetic she seemed, "What's your last test?"

"Allow me a glance into your memories," Reti peered down at Hawthorn, "I wish to know the life of my newest Queen Vessel,"

Hesitating, Hawthorn wondered if she was good enough to be Reti's Queen Vessel. Even if Yunan though she was, what if he was wrong? She steeled herself remembering how far she'd come. If she wasn't worth being Reti's Queen Vessel then she wouldn't have made it so far, she couldn't give up now especially since Yunan believed in her. Meeting Reti's eyes, she said, "Do as you like, I only ask that you do it quickly."

Reti's large hand settled on Hawthorn's head as the Djinn smiled, "Thank you."

Hawthorn felt the faintest prickling sensation behind her eyes, but that was all. When Reti removed her hand, the Djinn's face was blank making her panic a bit. She glanced at Yunan as she asked, "Lady Reti, are you okay?"

"You've been through so much for one so young, Little Cub," Reti sighed shaking her head, "Perhaps not as much as some, but still much. Answer me this question and I will agree to become yours," Hawthorn looked up at Reti ready for anything, "If given my power, what will you do with it? Will you use it to get revenge on those that have wronged you? Will you use it to take what's yours and damn the consequences? What will you do with it?"

Hawthorn jolted at the question and had to think about how to answer it. Why would she do if Reti became her Djinn? She thought about getting revenge for a few moments before shaking her head. No, she wouldn't want revenge since everything had already happened and it wouldn't change anything. In the end, she'd likely regret it. Take what is hers and damn the consequences? How can she do that when she didn't have anything? She had nothing to claim as hers even if Yunan was right and her parents were more than her relatives had described them. Looking up at Reti, she admitted with a small smile, "I don't really know what I would do with any power that you granted me, Lady Reti. At least, I don't know what I would do right now. I don't desire revenge at all. Sure, it might feel nice at first, but I don't think I'm the type of person to enjoy the suffering of others. Getting revenge on my relatives and the people that haven't done anything to help me, I think it's kind of pointless considering that it won't change the fact that it's happened. I don't really like my relatives, but I haven't grown to hate them especially when I know that what they've done isn't that bad compared to some of the other abused kids out there," She shook her head, "So I wouldn't use the power you give me for revenge."

"And the other things I said?" Reti asked with a slight smile.

Hawthorn shook her head, "Why use any power you give me for something I don't have? I have nothing that's purely mine at this moment. The clothes on my back, the pack I carry, and even my friendship with Yunan isn't just mine. I was given each of those things. Even if my parents were more than what my relatives told me, I still don't have anything that's purely mine," Hawthorn glanced back at Yunan and smiled, "Eventually, I'll have things I can call mine just like any other person in the world, but until then, I can't properly answer that question," She thought back to Reti's first question, "To be honest, I think I'd use your power to be free and protect myself. I would eventually use it to protect those I'll hold dear including Yunan," She looked back at Reti and let out a small laugh, "I must be the only one that's come to your Dungeon not knowing what exactly they'd use the power you'd give them for."

Reti giggled and shook her head, "You're definitely diffrent which prompts me to say this," Reti drew herself up, "I, Reti, Djinn of the 5th Dungeon accept you, Hawthorn, as my Queen Vessel."

Hawthorn grinned at Reti, "I'll do my best to ensure you don't regret this, Lady Reti!"

Reti smiled in return before frowning, "Now, what to do? You do not have a vessel for me to use."

"Perhaps we can find something in your treasure room," Yunan suggested as Reti and Hawthorn looked at him, "It wouldn't be the first time that someone has entered a dungeon without a vessel to hold a Djinn. The only question is what,"

"Yes, I suppose it would be nice to see my Queen wear something of mine," Reti replied as she began to look around the room, "Please find something you'd like, Hawthorn,"

Hawthorn looked at the various treasures in front of her feeling a bit lost. She hadn't been exposed to such riches before and it honestly threw her. Shaking her head softly, she tentatively walked over to a pile of jewelry and began sifting through it. Yunan and Reti occasionally offered something only to be shot down. Hawthorn spoke after a little while, "It can't be a weapon or anything bejeweled. It would get taken away from me in a second since no one save for those with a permit can carry weapons without getting arrested. Lady Reti, what is your chosen weapon?"

"A bow," Reti gestured to the bow that sat on the alter, "Why do you ask?"

"To narrow things down," Hawthorn answered as she moved to another pile, "It can't be earrings or anything to do with my neck. I honestly don't see myself pulling up my hair or anything since it's so short at the moment," Petunia refused to let her crimson locks to grow past her shoulder blades since it reminded the horse of her mother, "Not an anklet either which means a bracelet or ring of some kind. Nothing with jewels on it," She found herself looking through a pile of silver bracelets and armlets, "Something that wouldn't look out of place on someone in this day and age,"

"This maybe?" Yunan held up a silver armlet and she looked at it for a few moments before shaking her head.

Hawthorn was digging through the pile when she caught sight of something. It was a somewhat thin silver band with swirls etched into the metal. She carefully picked it up marveling at how light it was compared to the other bracelets she'd come across. She ran her thumb across the metal before trying it on. It fit snugly over her wrist, yet she could remove it with ease. She moved her wrist this way and that for a few moments before nodding to herself and deciding that this was the one. Standing up, she said, "I found it."

Hawthorn made her way over to Reti and Yunan holding the bracelet in her hand. Reti smiled as she caught sight of the relatively simple piece compared to everything else in the treasure chamber, "Now that is something that I haven't see since before Solomon turned me into a Djinn. I wore it a long time ago when I was just starting to use magic."

"Is that a mithril bracelet?" Yunan asked looked just a bit shocked.

Reti nodded as she gently picked up the bracelet, "Yes though we used a diffrent name for it back then. Every apprentice among my people were granted a plain bracelet made of mithril and would get it decorated when they passed their final test," Reti looked at Hawthorn, "This is the perfect vessel for me, Hawthorn. I am glad that you found it," Reti looked around them, "Everything within this room is yours to keep."

Hawthorn wanted to protest, but a look at Reti told her that she wouldn't succeed. Once all the treasure was gathered up in the bag Yunan had given her, Reti had her put on the bracelet. Reti turned into a burst of wind that slammed into the bracelet around her right wrist. A glowing eight pointed star inside of a circle appeared on the top of the band before the glow faded away. She ran a finger along the star and felt the stirring of a power greater than anything she'd ever felt before. It settled when she took her finger away and she turned to Yunan who looked a bit amused, "I guess that mean's we're done here?"

As if to answer her, the area around her was enveloped in a bright light and she found herself in that beam of energy she'd been in when entering the dungeon. She looked at Yunan as he comment, "You did well in there, Hawthorn."

"Thanks, Yunan, for everything," Hawthorn looked at her new metal vessel.

"It's no problem," Yunan replied with a smile.

Hawthorn looked at Yunan as a thought occurred to her, "How long do you think it's been since we left?"

"A month at least if not two," Yunan answered as they slowly floated through the beam of energy.

"Huh, it'll be summer which means a month of figuring things out," Hawthorn didn't mind not going to school, "I guess this means I'll be buying archery equipment since Reti's weapon is a bow," She thought about what Yunan had said before and reached up to her scar, "What are we going to do about...this?"

Yunan looked at where her hand rested and said, "I'll make arrangements with the goblins and have them remove the Horcrux from your scar since I do not have the experience to remove it myself. Once it's removed, we'll see if you're supposed to attend a magic school, which one, and decide if you'll go."

"And if I don't want to?" Hawthorn asked as she dropped her hand, "I want to get away from the Dursleys, but I'd like to stay with you,"

Yunan looked a bit surprised by her words before smiling, "You won't always be able to stay with me, Hawthorn. You need stability that can only be gained by staying in one place and more friends than just me."

"Yunan," Hawthorn didn't want him to leave again.

"How about this," Yunan spoke before she could continue, "During your breaks from school, I'll find you and we'll travel together. During school, you'll study hard and try your best to find loyal friends that may one day become members of your House Hold," Hawthorn hesitated earning a sigh from Yunan, "Hawthorn, I'm going to be traveling around the world looking for signs of their presence. It'll be too dangerous for you to come along full time especially since you're new to having a metal vessel and using magic,"

Hawthorn wanted to argue, but knew it was pointless. Yunan didn't want her to get hurt which meant she needed to become stronger in order to keep herself safe if she wanted him to take her traveling with him. Sighing softly, she said, "Alright, but I probably won't really like it."

After returning to earth, Yunan transported them to their usual spot and they headed to her house only to pause at the sight of the large man standing in front of the door. The two stared at the large man as Yunan commented, "That looks like a half-giant."

"What would a half-giant want with the Dursleys?" Hawthorn asked incredulously since the Dursleys despised anything to do with magic and giants were magic.

Yunan shrugged lightly, "I'm not sure, but there is a way to find out."

Hawthorn looked at Yunan than back at the half-giant, "Let's get this over with then."