Happy Thanksgiving to everyone who celebrates it! Thank GOD I'm not working tomorrow...the last thing I ever want to deal with is working as a cashier on Black Friday.
To my fellow cashiers who ARE working that day, I can only say you have my deepest sympathies and that I will hold up a glass of hard liquor for you.
It took Viper all of three days to register something they hadn't noticed in Reborn the first time around. Then again, considering what they heard about the final battle it made far too much sense in retrospect.
Namely the fact that Potter had, according to eyewitness accounts and his own testimony, died and against all odds managed to come back to LIFE without anyone knowing.
Things like that did not come without a price, and from what Viper could guess with their knowledge of flames, it had cost Reborn his original primary and forced his secondary to become dominant.
Viper had considered the possibilities, and it was likely Reborn didn't know he had a possible Sky secondary. It was the only explanation that fit, especially when added to the fact that he had paid for the ritual to fix his badly damaged core along with the rather expensive potions in full when asked. It was the first time in years Viper had felt close to whole again, but they could care less about returning to the magical society. Years of being in the mafia had shown them how stupid wizards were.
On the plus side, Reborn's odd protectiveness towards a certain perverted doctor had been explained, as had the source of who sealed his memories. Viper honestly had no idea that Reborn was close to the infamous Zabini family, who were as close to 'magical mafia famiglia' as one could get.
Blaise was rather suspicious due to the amount of trust Harry was giving a complete unknown like Viper. Especially one with such strong Mist flames.
Which was why the second the harmony bond slipped into place...which happened around the time Viper's core was finally fixed, though it would still carry 'scars' that made certain spells difficult...Viper confronted the Sun about it.
"Are you aware you have a Sky secondary?"
"What?" he said baffled.
"Check your flames. You seem to have a Sky secondary hiding under your Chaos Sun," repeated Viper.
Chaos Sun being the joke designation they had given Reborn's odd flames when they were still unaware of the curse about to befall them. Though knowing now who Viper was before, their reaction to it made far more sense as they knew more about the darker side of cursing someone than just the basics everyone was taught.
Reborn did so without hesitation, and his expression was hilarious to say the least.
"What the hell? How do I have a Sky secondary and why the hell didn't I notice it before?" he said baffled.
"If you recall, you did die during that final battle. I guess it damaged your flames and core in some way, and your Sun became overpowered to compensate while your Sky did everything it could to keep your soul together. Acts like that often leave massive scars on more than just the psyche," said Viper.
Reborn mulled over this information.
"My core did a complete reset and the seal I had on my memories shattered. Are you telling me it wasn't just my magic that was affected when we found ourselves in the past?" he said.
Suddenly a lot of things he took for granted made entirely too much sense. Like why he never harmonized with anyone, though Tsuna was honestly the closest he had ever come to that. A Sky couldn't harmonize with another Sky, though his final student was one of the rare few who could affect other Skies to the point of coming close.
Reborn checked his bonds, and found that so far he had a full one with Viper and a potential bond with Luna and Blaise. Oddly enough, it seemed he had a sort of attractant effect on Mists for some reason.
Oh well, he knew he could trust Viper implicitly...partially because Viper knew damn well not to cross him but mostly because he owed Reborn for not only fixing his core but fully reinstating him as a member of the House of Black.
So far they were keeping the fact Regulus was not only alive but stronger than before low-key, but there was always a chance of it getting out sooner or later.
Luna's bond was almost fully formed, but Blaise was halfway. Likely because he was Inactive, whereas Luna's flames had gone active the day her mother died.
That being said Luna was evidently a Rainy-Cloud, whereas Blaise was a Rainy-Mist.
Luna was taking the spot of his Cloud, likely until he found Skull again. Blaise was edging towards a secondary Rain bond.
All of this was giving him a headache, though it explained some of the looks Blaise had been giving him for a while.
Luna had accepted the addition of Viper cheerfully, as the much older Mist had seen her interaction with Reborn and knew the girl was to be 'protected', if the Sun had allowed her to claim a sibling relationship.
Viper shuddered at the memory of the last time some idiot had gone after Shamal...the results had not been pretty, even if the idiot doctor had slept with the man's rather beautiful wife and there was some debate over who the baby belonged to.
Justified or not, Reborn was downright evil whenever someone went after one of his.
Hard to believe he was only physically thirteen this year.
Reborn, in response the sheer level of boredom coupled with the fact Viper was all too happy to act as his supplier if only to prevent the Sun's twisted and terrifying mind from coming anywhere near his ass with pranks, made third year downright interesting.
He was also all too happy to teach the twins something new, namely how to maintain and shoot a gun.
Fred, much to his own surprise, was a natural sniper whereas George was better with throwing small objects...like say 'potion bombs' as Reborn called them.
They were very balls of ice so thin that a decent jolt...like hitting the ground...would cause them to break and spill the contents everywhere.
It had the twins researching which potions could still be used under sub-freezing temperatures and still be called 'pranks', which kept them busy as Reborn would refuse to teach them if they did the same potion more than twice, regardless of the actual prank.
One experiment that had Reborn giddy with the sheer possibilities was the fact that polyjuice could apparently be used without drinking the vile substance. It could be injected with a needle so long as it reached the bloodstream directly.
As a Sun and a natural hit man, Reborn could locate the veins with terrifying efficiency, and took great delight in causing all sorts of chaos by sneaking onto Azkaban one cold night and stealing some of the incarcerated Death Eater's hairs.
His particular favorite (though he made sure to warn Neville before he used them) was the Lestrange trio.
Sirius was torn between pride and professional honor as he and Remus tried to outdo Reborn and the twins.
Luna was humming cheerfully, as she had something in the box that would make her big brother deliriously happy. She had already sent the foggy snake's present, and she knew it would be well received.
Harry took her present without bothering to check for tampering. It was a rare show of trust for someone as paranoid as him.
Dead silence filled the room as Harry stared at the gift.
"What did you get him Luna?" asked Gred.
"Yeah, why's he acting like that?" asked Forge.
Harry slowly reached into the box to pull out...a tiny green lizard with orange eyes and a tail that was as curly as his sideburns. It blinked at him once before cheerfully crawling onto his fedora and almost looked decorative.
"How did you even find him?" asked Harry, his voice filled with delight and rare emotion.
"The Heliopaths told me where to go," said Luna cheerfully. "The viper of the mists is opening their present now, complete with a portable habitat."
"I thought they were part of our curse," said Harry, practically cuddling with the odd lizard.
"Actually it was your chaotic luck that caused you all to gain familiars. Whenever bad things happen, something good has to come out of it in order to maintain balance," corrected Luna.
Harry groaned, even if Leon was fascinating the wizards by turning into a mini T-Rex biting his fingers playfully.
"That explains too damn much," he complained.
"What the hell is that thing?" asked Blaise warily.
"His name is Leon, and he's a shape-changing chameleon," said Harry automatically. It was clear he loved Luna's present.
"Why do I have a sense of great foreboding with this creature?" asked Blaise to no one in particular.
The positively wicked smirk on Harry's face when Leon promptly turned into a gun and he let off a proper Chaos Shot in far too long made Blaise blanche considerably. It wasn't a good look on him.
"Dear gods... you're going to be an absolute menace now aren't you?" said Blaise.
"My title will be mine again soon," cackled Harry with dark glee. Leon had already taken his place on his fedora and was happy to have his human back again.
In another location in England...
"Are you seriously cuddling a toad?" said Sirius in disbelief.
"Of course I'm not cuddling a toad, you ingrate. And don't call him Sirius!" said Viper, hugging Fantasma to them. "Fantasma is far superior to those pathetic amphibians!"
Fantasma gave Sirius a dark glare, before turning into it's Ouroboros form and causing Viper to hover.
"O-kay...not going to ask what the deal is with the weird frog-snake creature..." said Sirius backing away. His brother was weird now that he quit following the same tripe their parents tried to instill in them.
If he found several vindictive pranks in his vicinity, he said nothing of the positively vicious gleam in his brother's eyes.
Chaos around the school ramped up to unheard of proportions after Luna reunited her brother with his familiar. Reborn was positively giddy in inflicting as much damage as he could to the school, to the point everyone was nervous if a prank wasn't played that day because it meant bigger humiliation was coming.
Ironically this was doing more to improve grades than any admonishment by the teachers had in years. Snape was furious.
In the minds of the teachers and the headmaster, the end of the year couldn't come fast enough. At least the prankster had 'graciously' sent a message that they would NOT prank the end of year exams or the Ministry run ones. Their prank war would be put on hold to allow the students to study in peace as it was too cruel to inflict chaos on the students during that time.
However they did promise one massive surprise for the end of year feasts that everyone would enjoy as a result.
Reborn passed with the highest scores possible.
He sat back to watch the show, Leon snuggled against his collar as he hated the cold and Scotland was far from warm on a good day. He was pleased Athena and Leon got along perfectly...it was adorable to see his snow owl giving the chameleon a lift.
It started out with a subtle thrum in the great hall, and everyone went silent with anticipation. Most of the pranks the past year had been brilliant and took a lot of effort and work to pull off, so they were eager to see the surprise.
Fireworks sprang across the night sky (both on the ceiling and in the actual sky outside) and the images of each Hogwarts house could be seen in their colors. It hadn't taken much for the residents of Hogsmeade (including a reporter for the Daily Prophet) to capture the images that blossomed in the night sky that culminated in a massive sky version of the Hogwarts crest, with each house in their personal colors. They even moved a bit, though it was rather limited. The lion roared, the eagle flaps it's wings, the snake seemed to strike and hiss, and the badger took a swipe at an unseen foe.
The students, having suffered from the antics of bored pranksters, clapped in true appreciation. Including the Slytherins.
Reborn and the twins wisely avoided giving a bow, as it would have implicated them as the culprits. Everyone knew they were behind the pranks, but they always had a solid alibi and thus the teachers couldn't issue detention.
(What they didn't know was Reborn had gotten some time turners when he visited the Ministry, and that the twins had gleefully used theirs to set off pranks while establishing their own alibi.)
Reborn was taking some time to properly enjoy a nice nude beach for his vacation. He knew the Tri-Wizard was going to happen this year and he wanted to be ready because he was going to be very busy later if and when Voldemort got his body back. While he could have prevented it, allowing the fool to regain a body meant he wouldn't have to track down a number of soon to be corpses later because they were stupid enough to answer the man's call.
Lucius, being a Slytherin through and through, had agreed to give the general locations of any Death Eater meetings that he would either excuse himself from just before Reborn's arrival, or avoid entirely.
After all, no one would be alive to suspect him if he disappeared with a legitimate meeting, and Reborn planned to 'allow' him to barely escape a few times to show he simply had horrible luck.
Lucius hadn't liked that part, as it meant he would have to have actual wounds that needed treatment, but at least he knew the teen would keep the injuries non-lethal, though it would hurt like a bitch and make it clear that he had put up a fight.
Considering the boy could have killed him outright and not lose any sleep over it, he considered the injuries the price he had to pay to stay alive and insure his foolish son never ended up on the other boy's hit list.
Since he had forewarning, Lucius was already planning to abdicate in favor of his son so that he and his wife could take advantage of the 'kind' offer Reborn had made. Namely that once Lucius' involvement in setting up other Death Eaters became suspected, that he and Narcissa would disappear to one of the many unplottable islands owned by the Black family.
It meant relative imprisonment until Voldemort was dealt with and the eventual lose of a lot of political power, but considering the alternative it was a surprisingly generous offer that he knew was only given because of his wife.
Reborn liked Narcissa, to an extent. And she was proud that he was the soon-to-be-head of the family, as it meant that the Blacks would once again take center stage in the magical societies.
At the very least being forced to spend time with Reborn had caused a change in Draco's behavior. He was starting to act like a proper member of the Black family, as opposed to the whiny brat Reborn had dealt with the majority of his Hogwarts years the first time.