A small figure ran across the rooftops of Gotham city, a similar sized form quickly following after it. The first form jumped over the gap between buildings, leaning forward slightly when it landed to keep its balance, and continued to run. The second figure kept close to the first, mirroring its movements over the gap. The two passed near several streetlamps, illuminating their forms: the first figure wore a purple straitjacket with black straps over a black jumpsuit, a pair of goggles over the eyes and a dark green mask covered the mouth and nose; a curious trait was that this person had vibrant, green hair.
The second person wore red vest with green shirtsleeves, an 'R' on the left side, along with green boots, gloves, and shorts, and with a short yellow cape; the person wore a black domino mask on their face, the eyes narrowed in concentration.
The first person flipped over another gap and tossed something at the other; the second person dodged to the side, avoiding the playing card shaped projectile, before throwing something as well. The first person also dodged the thrown object, shaped like a bird, before perching on the edge of the building, he tilted his head slightly in amusement before speaking, his voice slightly muffled by his mask, "As much fun as this is, Robin, I have plans in the morning, so I'll have to cut this short."
"I don't think so, Prank," Robin responded, charging forward across the rooftop.
Prank cackled as the two traded blows and dodges before his ears picked up a sound, 'Music? Not that I'm complaining, but it's perfect to make an escape!' Prank dodged another punch and, after giving a quick mock salute, flipped off the building.
Robin made the edge in time to see Prank slip into another building where he saw flashes of multicolored lights, 'You got to be kidding me…' He jumped off the building and slipped through an open window that Prank had apparently gone through, wincing at the loud music he was blasted with, 'Just my luck, there's a rave right next to us. I'll never be able to find him in this!'
From deep within the crowd of people, Prank looked up to where Robin was perched, a wide grin underneath his facemask. "See you around, Birdie," he murmured as he turned and slipped through the swarm of people who did not glance at him twice, this was Gotham and it was also a rave, as long as you were wearing something, not one would bother you. Prank glanced around the crowd, to see if there was anyone he knew hanging around here; he was not completely surprised to see a group wearing clown makeup dancing a few feet away from him, "Note to self, try and convince mum and dad to have a rave for my birthday…no drugs, of course."
Minerva McGonagall, made her way to the office of Albus Dumbledore, "Albus, you told me to come to you when I was to about to send out this years letters; is there a reason?"
"Yes, Minerva," Dumbledore responded, "It'd be best if someone personally delivered a particular letter because while the recipient had magical parents, they have lived in muggle world all their life."
"Who are you referring to, Albus?" McGonagall asked.
"Harry Potter," Dumbledore responded.
"…you're joking; I will not be going to Gotham!" McGonagall argued.
-Five minutes later-
McGonagall sighed; looking at the greenhouse before kicking aside the Portkey Dumbledore had put in her hands. She inwardly cursed Dumbledore and raised a hand to knock, 'Well, this is as good a place as any to start looking…I'm going to throw away his entire supply of lemon drops when I get back!'
The door opened to reveal a woman who, were it not for the modest covering of foliage, would be naked, "Can I help you?"
"I'm looking for Harry Potter," McGonagall responded and quickly added, "I will not kidnap him, I assure you."
"…you try anything to hurt him, I'll track you down and feed you to my plants," Ivy threatened.
Prank slipped quietly into an abandoned warehouse, far away from where the impromptu party was being held. He looked around cautiously before being suddenly bowled over; he flailed his arms in surprise, before attempting to push off the hyena that was on top of him, "Jin, down, get off!"
"He's excited to see you, hun," Harley remarked, pulling the excited creature off, "and turn your hair back, I like it better that way."
"Sure thing, mum," Prank responded, as his hair changed from green to black.
"That's better, Harry," Harley smiled, giving him a brief hug not remarking on the sudden color change, she had seen it often enough that it was normal, "How was your night?"
"Just the usual: I wandered around the city, ran into Birdboy, and lost him by ducking through a rave," Harry recounted.
"What did I tell you about those?" Harley said.
"I didn't take anything from anyone, mum," Harry cut off, "…can I have a rave for my birthday, no drugs allowed?"
"Let's ask puddin' I think he had something else planned today," Harley answered.
Apparently Joker did have something planned; he had set up for weeks a special present for Harry: a building to be blown up cued to tune of 'Happy Birthday' along with a massive display of fireworks. The 'party' itself was spectacular, a swarm of Jokerz had shown up to celebrate, were thrilled at the explosion, and had fun when Harry decided that the cake was better to throw than eat.
Several blocks away, McGonagall had felt and seen the explosion, 'I just hope Harry wasn't anywhere near that.' After a chat with Poison Ivy, and a few cups of herbal tea, she had been sent to seek more information at the residence of someone called the Riddler. A little while earlier, she had seen a man apparently suddenly freezing objects as he fled from a long black vehicle and as the two had passed, she quickly came to the conclusion that the city was completely and utterly mad. As she made her way to where the Riddler resided, she ran into a woman dressed in a skintight outfit, "…would it be presumptuous to ask if you know a Harry Potter?"
"How do you know the kitten?" Catwoman answered.
"Hey, Ze'ev, my letter should be arriving soon, right?" Harry asked, holding Jin in his arms as Harley drove insanely to avoid the police that had shown up.
"I believe so," Remus answered, idly compensating his posture whenever Harley made a sharp turn to make sure he did not fall over, "Should be arriving any day now."
"Just don't bite my ears or face," Harry commented as Jin tried to groom his hair, or at least eat the small pieces of cake still stuck in it.
"I'm still amazed that he actually understands you," Remus stated, watching as Jin licked the edge of Harry's hairline and nibbled at the hair, "Why do you let him do that?"
"Because he wants to," Harry responded, "It feels kind of nice, you should try it sometime."
"I'll stick to a brush and comb, thank you very much," Remus said with a grin.
"Your loss," Harry replied, giggling as Jin licked his ears, "Cut that out, it tickles!"
Remus noted that Jin seemed to truly understand the words Harry was saying instead of the general message most animals would get, 'Maybe the two of them have become bonded? I have to check later.'
After causing some more mayhem during their escape, Harry, Harley, Joker, and Remus walked into the hideout to find someone knocked out and tied to a chair.
"…what'd we miss?" Harry commented with a laugh.
"Oh no…" Remus groaned, seeing who the person was.
"You know them?" Joker asked, coming around to get a better look.
"She's a teacher at Hogwarts, Professor McGonagall," Remus answered, "Harry, you need to change into some normal looking clothes, it wouldn't be good if she reported back that you're involved in crimes."
"Roger!" Harry did a mock salute before running off to his room to change.
"Do I need to change?" Harley asked.
"No, she knows what you look like, it's a bit of a tricky thing to explain, I'll do so later," Remus answered.
"Your disguise looks fine, you can just pretend to be one of our henchmen," Harry remarked to Remus as he ran back into the room, finishing pulling on a plain red colored shirt and adjusting his glasses.
"McGonagall is no fool, but let's hope for the best," Remus answered, adjusting his wolf mask before grabbing Joker, "She can't see you."
"Why not?" Joker asked, pouting slightly.
"She only knows that Harry lives with Harley, and that he knows you. If she reports that Harry lives with you and considers you his father, he'll be taken away," Remus explained as he dragged off Joker into the shadows, watching as Harley and Harry carefully got the other henchmen to wake up McGonagall, and also keeping an eye on Joker to make sure he did not do anything stupid. The moments that happened after McGonagall was untied then woken up is a bit of a blur, but it culminated with the henchmen who had tied her up in the first place being reprimanded.
"Who might you be?" Harley asked, smiling at the scene of two full grown men being completely cowed.
McGonagall looked up and saw the figures of Harry and Harley staring at her, amused. She straitened her robes and introduced herself, "I am Minerva McGonagall, Deputy Head Mistress of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in addition to being the Transfiguration teacher there."
"Okay, why're you here then?" Harry asked, he had decided to make himself comfortable and crouched on his favorite chair. "You are very relaxed about this." 'I'm actually nervous as heck, but can you blame me?'
"I was sent to deliver a letter; it is customary for a muggle student to have their letter be delivered by a magical representative in person," McGonagall answered.
"Why didn't you just mail it?" Harley asked, taking a seat and motioning for the teacher to take one also.
"Because most likely the letter would have arrived late, due to the owl taking having to cross the ocean," McGonagall responded.
"Owls, you use owls to deliver letters? Uncle Pengy would just love that…but in all honesty, that's just kind of dumb," Harry spoke, an odd smile crossing his face.
McGonagall was a little unnerved at how Harry seemed to be much wiser than his age and how he seemed to be both staring at her and through her.
"So, where's this letter you were delivering?" Harry asked, idly adjusting his glasses.
McGonagall handed over the letter, watching as Harry broke the wax seal on the envelope and quickly scanned the writing, before promptly folding it up, "Will you be attending Hogwarts or going to an American school?"
"If everyone there doesn't mind someone who's slightly insane," Harry grinned.
McGonagall gave a small smirk, "If the school can survive the Weasley twins, I think we'll be fine."
"Who're they?" Harry asked, genuinely curious.
"A pair of twins that have taken it upon themselves to try and live up to the reputations of a previous group of pranksters," McGonagall sighed, "If they put the same amount of dedication into their schoolwork as they do with their pranks, they would be at the top of their classes."
"Sounds like a lot of fun," Harry grinned widely, "With those two around, they'll make me feel less homesick since they can remind me of Uncle Joker."
"You see him as your uncle?" McGonagall asked, she had thought Joker was a bigger influence in Harry's life.
"Yeah…he's a bit odd though, but I don't see him a lot because he's either busy causing chaos or is locked up," Harry remarked, "When he's around, he treats me like a favorite pet, it's annoying but it doesn't happen often."
Inwardly McGonagall sighed, glad that Joker, who sounded like an evil piece of work, was not that a frequent participant in Harry's upbringing.
Meanwhile, Remus was surprised that McGonagall had bought the lie, 'Harry's getting very good at making lies seems like truths.'
Joker was fuming silently, 'I can't believe he demoted me to being a weird uncle!"
"How's the school year lain out? When are breaks for holidays or vacation?" Harley asked, getting the conversation back on track.
"School starts in September and ends in June," McGonagall informed, "There's a three week break for Christmas and New Years along with a week for Easter."
"What about Jin?" Harry inquired; the animal in question lifted its head up, sensing that it was being mentioned in the current conversation.
"I don't think he'd be allowed, the only pets you are allowed take are a cat, owl, or a toad," McGonagall responded.
"I sort of understand having a cat or a toad, you can carry them around, but the owl wouldn't be useful to me since everyone I know lives here and with an owl it'd take forever to send messages…and it's not good that I can't take Jin with me," Harry remarked and elaborated when he saw McGonagall's look, "I've had Jin since he was a cub, he was a gift from Uncle Joker; we're inseparable, and sometimes it seems like he can read my mind and understand what I'm saying…"
"…there might be an exception if he's your bonded familiar," McGonagall responded.
"How can we tell?" Harry asked with a glint of hope in his eyes.
"You have already described a few traits, a bonded familiar usually has a connection to its owner and can understand when they speak, they also have a mental connection too, allow them to know the other's thoughts," McGonagall explained, "there is a good chance he is bonded to you and, if that is the case, most likely you would be able to bring him since separating a person from their bonded familiar for an extended period of time and distance, hurts both of them because of the connection."
Remus smiled to himself at hearing the information, 'I knew it; they are bonded.'
"Then Jin can come with me?" Harry responded, grinning and nearly jumping out of his seat.
"Maybe," McGonagall responded, slightly amused at his antics, "Now, the matter of getting your school supplies."
"I'll do that," Remus interrupted, making sure to disguise his voice.
"Who might you be?" McGonagall asked, suspicious.
"A Squib; I joined up a while ago, after my family kicked me out, and when I realized who Harry was, I taught him a few basic things about the magical world," Remus lied, "I can take Harry to get his things."
"You will have to set up a Portkey to Diagon Alley, to do so," McGonagall responded before handing Harry an envelope, "Your letter also contains your supply list as well as what books you will need for the upcoming year, you don't have to send your reply by owl since you have told me verbally that you will attend, I will see you September fist, Mr. Potter."
"I'll show you out," Remus offered.
"I have a suggestion as to keeping better communication with Mr. Potter while he is at Hogwarts," McGonagall spoke.
"What would that be?" Remus responded.
"Look into purchasing or renting a wizarding home, so you will be connected to the Floo Network; Mr. Potter would be able to send home letters much easier that way," McGonagall informed.
"I'll run it by them, see what they say," Remus replied.
"Very well then…your outfit is interesting," McGonagall commented, "I take it you're a fan of wolves?"
"They're fascinating creatures," Remus answered, sweating nervously inside his costume.
"…I once had a student who was a werewolf, he was quite timid at first before he meet Harry's father and made some friends, but he disappeared a while ago and no one knows where he went," McGonagall replied, "But it shouldn't mean a thing to you, you wouldn't have known him; have a good day."
Remus twitched as he watched McGonagall walked off, 'She knew who I really was!'
Harry noted that something seemed off about Remus when he came back in, "What's wrong?"
"I think she knew who I really was," Remus murmured, collapsing into a chair.
"Did she actually say that?" Joker asked, taking an odd delight in seeing Remus stressed out.
"No, but she implied it," Remus answered.
"Maybe she'll keep your secret," Harley reasoned.
"Maybe…" Remus sighed.
"Why'd you say I was your uncle?" Joker asked.
"I don't think that it'd be a good idea if wizards knew that you're my dad," Harry answered, "I'm not ashamed of to admit it, but I want to be careful…I may sound paranoid but it's better than being taken away from you guys."
Harley immediately swept up Harry into a bruising hug, "No one's taking you away, hun."
"Mum, can't breathe!" Harry complained, attempting to pry her arms off.
Remus chuckled at the scene before speaking, "You didn't correct McGonagall when she said your last name was Potter instead of Quinzel."
"For good reason; most likely people are going to try and track down where I've been the last few years and if I give my last name as Quinzel and if people are smart enough to look through the muggle side, I'll be taken away from your guys and I'd rather be forced to conform than have that happen," Harry reasoned, "I just have to remember not to correct people…oy, this is going to be crazy."
"I thought you were already crazy," Remus remarked with a small laugh, to which Harry retaliated by pouncing on him.
"How did it go?" Dumbledore asked; he had called a meeting with the staff when the Transfiguration teacher had returned.
"As well as could be expected, other than a few hitches along the way," McGonagall answered, glaring daggers, "After meeting and speaking to Poison Ivy first, she sent me to meet an interesting man who called himself Riddler, while on the way to him I ran into a woman calling herself Catwoman, who was interesting in her own right, and after leaving her and meeting Riddler I was then told to go to a man named Two-Face on where Harry's whereabouts were.
I spent nearly an hour conversing with Two-Face because he kept flipping a coin whenever I asked him a question to decide whether to answer it or not. It seems to me that while these 'villains' are quite odd, they are actually quite pleasant and wish no ill will to come to Harry.
Pomona, you would get along quite well with Poison Ivy; her plants are quite amazing feat for a muggle, some of which could rival magical plants.
Filius, Riddler was an interesting person, if he created the password riddles for your house, not even your seventh years would be able to get in.
After the runaround, eventually I did find Harry Potter, and he seems to be doing quite well."
"Thank you, Minerva," Dumbledore spoke before ending the meeting. When the other teachers had left, he pulled McGonagall aside, "Was there anything else you found out?"
McGonagall glared at Dumbledore before speaking, "I inquired about the Joker and what his ties to Harry are; apparently he seems to be not too far off from being an extremely eccentric uncle and contact between the two is minimal since Joker seems preoccupied with attempting to combat an entity named Batman or is either locked up…if only temporarily from what I've heard."
"Thank you for finding that out," Dumbledore responded.
"There was one more matter that needs attention," McGonagall spoke, "Mr. Potter seems to have a bonded familiar…"
"What sort of animal was it?" Dumbledore asked.
"A hyena, a gift from Joker apparently," McGonagall answered, "Potter described several traits indicating that the two have a bond: the animal, Jin it's called, understands when Potter speaks and from what I've been told, it might also have a slight telepathic link."
"I believe there is a special exception to the school pets rule in regard to familiars that are bonded, I believe that it would be in the best interests of everyone to allow the pet to attend," Dumbledore responded.
McGonagall nodded before making to leave the room, turning around when she got to the door and speaking, "I'll get you back for sending me to that insane city without a decent warning."
Harry stared up at the sky from his seated position on the swing as he heard someone call out his name, he looked down and saw Dick approaching him, and he greeted his friend with a smile, "Hey Ritchie."
"You don't seem like your cheery self, what's wrong," Dick asked, taking the seat beside him, he was wondering why Harry had told him to meet up during the middle of the week instead of on Saturday as they usually did.
Harry slowly starting to swing before answering, "…I'm going away for a while, I don't think I'll be back until Christmas,"
"Where're you going?" Dick inquired.
"This special school overseas…my birth parents had it set up that I would go there when I was the right age, so I'm going," Harry responded.
"How do you know about it then?" Dick asked, starting to swing also.
"Uncle Remus told me…he went there too, he says it's nice," Harry answered, "The school grounds are huge and I think there aren't any seriously dangerous chemicals around."
Dick laughed at the reminder of what Harry had done a few months ago, "They just finished fixing that mess you know."
Harry smiled, "I'll try and write as much as I can while I'm gone."
"Why don't you just call?" Dick asked.
"…the school is in Britain, the phone bill would be huge!" Harry responded with a laugh, "But in all honesty, I'm going to miss hanging out with you."
"Same here, you're one of the few people I've meet that cares to only know me for me and not who my guardian is," Dick smiled, he was surprised when Harry suddenly held out his hand, pinky sticking out.
"Let's make a promise," Harry spoke, "We'll always be friends."
Dick wrapped his pinky around Harry's, "Of course; not matte what happens, we'll stay friends forever."