Chapter 16: Truth
Silence — complete and utter silence filled the room with gaping expressions, bewildered shock and confusion all around. No one seemed able to say anything, which was understandable since Harry had been the same way up to his discovery of the magical world. Unfortunately, that didn't mean he was taking the silence well. His expression remained vacant to hide his anxiety while questions whirled through his mind. What were they thinking? Would they be okay with the existence of magic? How would they treat him from here on out?
Worry and fear began to build — the turmoil of his new friends rejecting him due to his magic was far too much for him to handle. Being turned away by those he considered friends was the worst feeling in the world.
His hands curled below, gripping his pants. He focused on the others, observing their still slack jawed expressions.
"W-what do you exactly mean by wizard?" Tsuna was the first to speak. He was hesitant even as he tried to understand what exactly Harry meant. "A-and how did you turn the table into a lamp?"
It was now or never. Everyone in the room managed to compose themselves, snapping their attention to him once again. Thankfully for Harry, none of them appeared shocked anymore. Instead they looked more curious than ever; even so it relieved the previous anxiety he felt. The wizard paused, inhaling and exhaling sharply, and scanned over the crowd.
He eyed them all critically. "Before I start, I want all of you to understand the seriousness of what I'm about to reveal — there are people who won't take too kindly to what I'm about to tell you. Your memories might get modified to the point where you would forget me and possibly each other." Their horrified looks made him flinch. Harry hated it, but informing them now would prepare them for the future. He swallowed quietly as he held a nervous gaze.
"That's one of the minor consequences for you all. You could even be monitored for the rest of your lives or even thrown in Azkaban. It's a prison; basically hell on earth." Literally. Given what Harry heard about the place, it seemed almost a physical manifestation of hell. "Do you all still want to know?"
Fear swelled in the air as he observed their frightened expressions. It couldn't be helped, but they deserved to know what came with his secret. It didn't make telling them any easier. Harry refused to allow himself to break before them, keeping a stoic face to conceal his own fears of being rejected by the people he had come to call his friends.
Hana slammed her hand onto the table, grabbing the attention of the entire room. "We're already too far into this. I doubt anything that you can say will make us turn away." Her eyes peered at him. Underlying the harsh tone she used, he could sense her trust in him.
"K-Kurokawa's r-right," Tsuna spoke up, timidly. He gave a shaky smile that began to soften with confidence. "It won't matter to us."
"TRUST IN US TO THE EXTREME!"
Takeshi grinned. "Even if our memories are taken, we'll just get them back!"
"Hmph," Gokudera snarled, turning his head away. "Like I'd let our memories be taken."
Haru nodded sharply. "We won't let that happen!" She grinned. "Don't worry about us, Harry. We can protect ourselves!"
Kyoko nodded, beaming at her friends. Her eyes glowed gently as she glanced to him. "You can believe in us and our strength. We won't let anything happen," she reassured him in a confident and firm tone.
How was he supposed to respond? They were oozing with honesty, believing in each other; Harry almost felt winded but after being around them for so long, he truly felt they were telling the truth. None of them would end up losing their memories or being held captive by the ministry, but he wondered silently to himself. What were the differences between the British and Japanese laws in regards to magic? Would the consequences be the same or were there differences?
He would dedicate some time to find out once he located the entrance to the Japanese magical side.
"I don't really know much, but I do know the basics of our history. You see, people like myself have the ability to bend the laws of nature to our will. The power we have is called magic. It's existed since the dawn of time, though has remained largely hidden from the rest of the world. I know that the higher ups in the government are aware of the existence of magic as well as the communities that exist," Harry began, hurriedly. Briefly he wondered if he was going too fast with his explanation. Yet he'd rather get straight to the point, opposed to dancing around the subject.
"We channel our magic through our wands, which we use for casting." That sounded a lot better in my head, he mused to himself. But what else could he talk about now? Obviously there was still more to say the question was what though? "Erm, as far as I know every country has their own magical community."
Takeshi spoke up next. "So there's one in Japan, too?"
"That makes you an UMA, doesn't it?" Gokudera pointed at him, an eager grin on his face.
The hell? Harry was glad to know that he wasn't the only one staring at the half-Italian teen incredulously. Bianchi pinned him with a glare, causing Gokudera to fall right over to clutch his stomach and give a sharp cry that echoed through the room. Never before had Harry felt so thankful for the teen's inability to look at his own sister. "Yes. Japan has their own magical community, too."
"If that's true," Haru piped up, "Why didn't you go and try to get help from them?"
The teen looked down. "I ... couldn't find the entrance to the magic side of Japan."
"Where exactly is the entrance to Britain's magical side?" Hana questioned, gaining his attention. She shot him and irritable stare. "Well? Where is it?"
Why was she asking a question like that? Back in Britain the only way to get to the magical side was by going through the Leaky Cauldron in ... his line of thought trailed off as he covered his face with his hand. A heavy groan escaped his lips. "It's in London." Harry wanted to slam his head on the table for being so utterly stupid!
Hana smirked, dryly. "Understand what you did wrong?"
"... Yes." Better to swallow his pride and admit it now while he still had the chance. His hand ran through his dark locks as he sighed in a quiet manner.
"I thought Namimori would have some doorway to access the Japanese magical side, but since it isn't the capital of the country, the method I used to locate it didn't work. Because there was no doorway in this city my attempts of finding it were useless," Harry answered, in a rather frustrated tone. He was appalled by his own idiocy for not realizing earlier; the distance between their current location and Tokyo was rather large.
"So there's an entire community of magical folk all over the world," Reborn mused, onyx eyes gleaming with an unreadable emotion. "Just what else do these civilizations entail?"
Harry's brows knit together. "I've never been outside of magical Britain but basically what this side has. Only with magic, I mean. We have sports like Quidditch: similar to football, ours not the Americans, and basketball in the air, involving broomsticks —"
"You ride actual broomsticks?" Haru exclaimed, slamming her hands on the table and jumping out of her seat. Her brown eyes sparkled upon hearing those words.
"Do you also use cauldrons for casting spells and making potions? Do witches have warts? What about animals? Do you have costumes and plays over there — what about theatre? You have to have some sort of theatre! What about books on myths and fairy tales!" She continued on a bit of an excited ramble, words slurring together as she continued to spew out question after question at an incredibly fast rate.
"Slow down with all the questions, will ya?" Hana sent her friend a stricken look. Haru's face slowly turned a bright shade of red as she sat down sheepishly. "Well?" The girl quickly turned her attention towards Harry, pinning him with a flat stare.
The wizard stared back before understanding. "Yes, cauldrons are for potions so that's true. The wart question is a definite no, and yes we have different animals in the magical world. Costumes, players and theatre I really don't know, and we probably do have some books on fantasy somewhere in the libraries and book stores," Harry answered in complete order. The questions she asked started making him rather aware of how little he truly knew. He never went looking for more information about the world he lived in for the past several years, mainly focusing on staying alive and homework rather than actual magical culture.
"To be honest with all of you, there's still a lot that I don't really know about magic and the magical community. I've only known about it for four years, as I've grown up completely non-magical. I didn't even know magic existed until I was eleven!"
"You didn't know?" Takeshi's eyebrows furrowed together. "How does that work?"
"Aren't you born with your magic?" Kyoko inquired politely as she tilted her head slightly. Curiosity gleamed within her eyes.
Shamal didn't seem all that interested, leaning back against the couch and waving his hand dismissively. "It's probably like puberty, coming into their abilities like teens growing into their hormones and all that." The brunet turned, flashing a rather lazy smile to Harry. "Ain't that right, kid?"
"That's ... almost spot on actually. We come into our magic at rather young age but with barely any control. Since our magic is connected to our emotions, there are cases of accidental magic when we're younger. While as we grow older, we develop better control over our magic — while we continue to grow in strength." His explanation sounded rather awkward to him. Nevertheless, Harry went on. "When we reach the age of eleven our magic is stable enough to learn how to utilize it and then we're shipped off to Hogwarts —"
"Hogwarts?" Gokudera remarked, snorting. "What kind of a name is that?"
Tsuna's eyes twitched. "It sounds like a type of sandwich!"
"Really?" Kyoko frowned, humming. "It reminds me of a fish to be honest."
"Can we get back on subject, please? All this talk about food is really starting to make me hungry," Hana quipped flatly, pinning her trademark stare at the other three. Kyoko and Tsuna wore sheepish looks as Gokudera scoffed but complied nonetheless.
"So, what is your school like anyway?" Her interest in the subject slightly increased.
"Hogwarts, well, it's a giant castle for starters. It's been around for over a thousand years, having been started by four of the greatest witches and wizards in England — besides Merlin, of course." Harry was met with incredulous and surprised looks, had the legend of King Arthur and Merlin really reached the Asian countries? "At Hogwarts each of us is sorted into one of four houses, dormitories, which are named after the founders: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin. Each house comes with its own trait, house animal and colors —"
Bianchi frowned, thin disapproval marring her features. The woman shook her hand, sighing. "Why would anyone think it's a good idea to separate children at young ages? It's just going to lead to trouble."
"Competition?" Takeshi supplied, sheepishly only to shrink apologetically upon the stern stare from the woman.
Hibari's eyes narrowed, turning towards Harry. "Herbivore."
The wizard's emerald eyes flickered towards him. Herbivore? "Erm ... yes?" That had been a new one. At least it was better than Draco Malfoy's scar face!
"Keep your magic under control or I will bite you to death!" The prefect revealed two tonfas from behind his coat, holding them up in a very menacing manner. His dark eyes reflected coldly at him.
"... I'll do my best to make sure of that," Harry replied. His expression remained still, while inwardly he was baffled by the suddenness of his statement as well as the weapons the other teen had pulled out on him. Somehow, the wizard sincerely doubted that Reborn had anything to do with them. The others seemed nonplussed by Hibari's comment, rather resigned if anything else. "Erm, do any of you have any more questions?" What else was he supposed to say?
Ryohei frowned. "So there aren't any boxing clubs at this Hogwarts?"
Harry blinked at the question. "No."
"Then I must go there and create a boxing club! I'll teach them boxing TO THE EXTREME!" The albino boxer stood up fiercely as he tipped over the table, throwing his fists into the air and yelling loudly. Hana leaned over, whacking him upside his head. The teen let out a bit of a cry, rubbing the sore spot while pouting at her. She gave a smug look as Ryohei sat back down after fixing the table. As a round of chuckles went around the room, bright smiles, and cheerful expressions lightened up the room.
That little outburst brought a smile to the wizard's face; he chuckled quietly at the image of Ryohei attempting to start a boxing club at Hogwarts. Needless to say, the chances of that succeeding were slim to none, due to the antagonistic Purebloods. Even so, he smirked as his thoughts drifted to Malfoy getting thrashed by Hermione — he remembered how she punched that spoiled brat near the end of third year. It was a pleasant memory he planned on cherishing for his entire life, though he knew Hermione could learn a thing or two from the boxer. Nonetheless he didn't doubt that if she did train under Ryohei, Hermione would become a fierce fighting machine.
That said, if Ron and Hermione ever met his friends here, he had a feeling Ron would end up getting along with the boxer instead, with Hermione attaching herself to the rest of the girls, Hana in particular.
"All of this explains why there are hardly any records of you anywhere," Bianchi murmured, eyes in deep concentration as they flickered to him. "When Reborn and I went to find records to register you, there were hardly any except in your elementary school archives before you vanished." Her eyes stilled upon him.
"Really?" Harry blinked rapidly at that little revelation. Since the muggle world and the magical world were separate, the fact his birth hadn't been recorded in the muggle archives did make a lot of sense. The question that remained was whether it would lead to further problems down the road. Without a normal birth certificate, things could become complicated. "That's ... good to know." His voice strained a bit, not knowing what else to say.
"So what now?" MM slurred, lazily leaning against the side of the chair with a bored expression. "Not much we can do right?"
"Tokyo isn't that far from Namimori. We could take the bus to get there, though finding this 'entrance' is going to be difficult. It's a prefecture so there are a lot of districts, we'd have to check them all out one by one," Hana murmured, eyes narrowing. "Our best bet might be the entertainment or business districts."
Tsuna frowned. "It's going to take awhile to get there ... we might have to wait until tomorrow, or even the weekend!"
"I can skip practice tomorrow," Takeshi commented with a grin on his face. "The team will be fine without me for at least a day!"
Gokudera snorted, angrily. "Oh please, they're doomed to failure with or without your help, baseball brain!"
"That's not every nice, Gokudera!" The baseball player frowned at the remark.
"I'll definitely come TO THE EXTREME!"
Hana rolled her eyes, shooting him a dry look. "Of course, you're coming." Not giving Ryohei a chance to respond, her attention went over to the rest of the girls. "You all realize we're going to have to go and make sure they don't go off somewhere and end up doing stupid things."
"It will be fun to explore Tokyo!" Kyoko giggled, clapping her hands together ignoring her friend's rude statement. "There might be some sweets they have that we don't!"
Haru nodded vigorously. "Maybe even some cute costumes there, too!"
"I don't have any interest in that," MM sneered shaking her head. "... But I'll come along anyway."
"I might find a good cook book filled with new recipes for my poison cooking!" Bianchi whispered under her breath and smiled widely at the prospect of expanding her technique. "Mama would love to try cooking new things as well!"
"I-I'm not sure that it's a good idea to tell mom!" Tsuna protested, stuttering, his face reddened at his own words. "I-I mean ..." The brunet swallowed, a wave of confidence seemed to wash over him as he fell into a comfortable stance and his tone took a firm turn.
"This isn't our secret. It's Harry's. None of us are going to go around and spit it out, and we're going to keep it amongst ourselves." His brown eyes slowly gazed over the inhabitants of the room in a stern manner. Unfortunately, that didn't last too long as his face grew red again upon realizing the bold words that came from him. "Hiiie!" His hands flew up, covering his mouth as he became thoroughly embarrassed.
Reborn smirked devilishly with approval. "Nicely said, dame-Tsuna."
"Of course, none of us are going to go out spewing it out. Besides who would even believe us?" MM inquired dryly, waving her hand for dramatic effect. She pinned the brunet with a pointed stare as she got her words across.
Kikyo gave a tiny smile. "She has a point there, Tsuna-san."
"Finally." Hana almost threw up her hands in exasperation. "You're developing a backbone!"
"Juudaime's always had a backbone, you've just never been around to see it is all, woman!" Gokudera snapped, obediently defending Tsuna without missing a beat. He snarled lowly alongside an open and fierce glare.
Once again, like always, the room erupted into a fit of arguments, fighting, laughter, tears and cheerful smiles. Everyone was having fun watching Hana and Gokudera going at one another mercilessly. Even so, those in the room knew it was simply all in good fun. Moments like these always felt as if they were bound to last forever.
A tingle of excitement ran through Harry's bones. Yet he could not understand as to the reason since that very thought seemed to drift away, having quickly immersed himself in the chaos erupting around him. All the fears that once plagued him, all the anxiety that had been built by fear and worry had all but vanished. They all accepted him, his magic, everything without judgement or scorn.
They sat and listened to him regardless of his stumbling through his explanations. Even so in his mind it was a step forwards, feeling he had become stronger as well as closer to his new friends. Admittedly, he felt guilty knowing that there were certain things Harry had yet to reveal to them.
Eventually they would come to light. By that time the teen sincerely hoped he'd have the courage to tell all of them himself.
Until that day arrived Harry would trust in his friends, without any regret.
Changes occurred throughout Namimori Middle — the hallways were riddled quietly with obscure rumors flying from one student to the next, each reaction from the students varied. Some were surprised, others were shocked, and unsurprisingly a large consensus of the student body had expressed delight upon the discovery that the infamous teacher who plagued Namimori was no longer a teacher. Nezu Dotachiro, a vile man who mercilessly bullied students that didn't do well, preaching elitism as well as a strong and eerie emphasis on tests, had not just been fired. Nezu's lack of credentials came to light — he was a complete fraud. Those same "credentials" were then pulled with an additional blacklisting of the man's future in education. The former teacher was disgraced in the simplest, most direct and utterly humiliating way possible!
Ever since the mandatory science test that was circulated throughout the middle schools, their former teacher, in a disgusting manner, accused several notable students of cheating. The accused had stood up against him, calling him into question, which eventually led to a re-take in a show of faith.
Nezu agreed to the re-test on the condition that if the students failed, they'd be expelled on the spot. Each of them reluctantly allowed the condition to be the penalty of failure, taking the re-test the next day early in the morning and spending two hours writing before handing them in.
Nearing the end, the school erupted in frustrated screams, grabbing everyone's attention. The halls flooded completely outside of the teacher's door. Everyone listened in on the dubious noises that came from Nezu as he began to splutter incoherently through the doors, pointing wildly and becoming more, and more frustrated with each word. His face reddened as his voice got louder, higher and wilder; he looked completely idiotic, even disturbed to a few. The scene played out intensely, and no one could look away.
The principal swiftly cut into the vehement argument from Nezu, chiding him sharply and instantly shutting the teacher's mouth, much to the accused student's relief. It continued to astonish the student body that Dame-Tsuna managed to pass the notorious teacher's exams.
Ever since the brunet started hanging out with the resident Italian foreigner, everyone slowly noticed him going from the bottom of the class to a somewhat average scoring student. Though some speculated that the recent friendship between the newest foreigner, Potter, and the resident Ice Queen, Kurokawa, played a larger part in the more noticeable changes in the formerly 'No-Good' teen. How long had that lasted? Many of them doubted it would change back at all.
Tsuna's outburst against Nezu's accusations was the trigger that sent the school's mental alarms ringing. While his timidity remained, he now walked with a shadow of boldness in his awkward skittishness. Nonetheless, the change was there. Only no one had paid much attention until now.
Another challenge was presented to Tsuna and his friends after the test: finding the time capsule that had been buried by students who attended Namimori several decades ago. From the many whispers circulating the hallways, Nezu gave them the task of finding a capsule that had been long since lost, even from the staff! In the end, that was his downfall.
Tsuna's unnatural luck had kicked in at the last moment as he stumbled upon on the time capsule, where they had unwittingly dug up a tattered old box. It belonged to one Dotachiro Nezu.
What lay within were failed tests scores, horrendous papers, and an embarrassing report card. Effectively it ruined any and all credibility Nezu had. A vicious turn of karma led to the exposure of every lie he'd made by a mysterious Professor known as Rebornyama. As a trusted person of the principal, he appealed for Nezu's immediate dismissal.
It was rather slow for the rest of the Namimori students to understand but even they started to realize that things were changing in their school. Time would soon reveal whether it would be for better or for worse.
The trip from Namimori to Tokyo's business district took little under an hour's time. Reborn had made several personal calls allowing them access to a Vongola-made vehicle commissioned as an everyday school bus. Now Harry didn't exactly know if this was the social norm for Japan, but given the non-infant's tendencies to be rather over the top he knew better.
Surprisingly, the only ones going were their little group minus the adults. This was shocking since he knew how much Bianchi wanted to join them and explore the magical part of Japan; though the wizard didn't find it all that odd that Kikyo had opted out to look after Ipin and Lambo. The children were rather known for getting into trouble when no one was looking, and they had whined when they couldn't go until Tsuna broke down and promised them both each a present when they returned.
Once that was said, the two children beamed happily at the prospect before running off to play upstairs, Kikyo running not too far behind them. Bianchi did stay to give Nana some company and to aid to their new house resident.
The newest additions to their group were MM, Gamma and Lanchia. The three joined their little group willingly, though MM and Lanchia were currently under Tsuna's custody since their defeat at his hands. However, the older male didn't seem to have any problems with that since he and Tsuna got along famously. MM, on the other hand, had her nose turned up in the air, given her snobbish attitude towards nearly all of them. This oddly connected her most with Hana and even weirder, Haru, of all people.
Harry wisely made the decision to keep his mouth shut, content with the budding friendships between the girls. Unfortunately the male spectrum seemed to be the opposite, given Gokudera's attitude to the newcomers. A part of him was irritated by the teen's growling toward the three, though admittedly Harry knew it wasn't his place to remark due to his lack of knowledge of the events before meeting Lanchia and MM.
He didn't know the circumstances involving the fight between those two back in Kokuyo Land. None of the others revealed anything other than beyond the basics, which surrounded the occurrences and the mastermind behind everything: Mukuro Rokudo. Everything else was sealed away, forgotten like an old memory. Harry understood completely where they were coming from. The majority of his own adventures back at Hogwarts had been kept between Hermione, Ron, Professor Dumbledore and him, and away from the rest of the staff and student body. Mostly because they didn't need to know.
"So this is Tokyo's business district. I've never been here before. It's so big!" Takeshi chirped happily as he looked around, awed by the crowds of suits and pedestrians that walked past them. A grin split across his face like that of an excited child.
Gokudera glared at him. "You idiot. We're not here to have fun!"
"Says you," MM interjected flatly, wearing a blank stare. "I'm here to look at magical fashions. Hopefully they'll have something that suits my sense of style. But from what I've seen him wear?" She directed her thumb towards his general direction, making a face. "There better be something, or else I'll have to show them a thing or two about clothes!" A smirk soon replaced her previous blank look, filled with mischief and excitement.
Harry slightly arched an eyebrow, expressing his own dryness. "Excuse me?"
"It's not your fault." She placed both hands on his shoulders. "You're a guy. It's in your nature to be completely nonsensical when it comes to color, but don't worry, we girls will lend you a hand. Leave everything to us!"
A chill ran up his spine, making him shudder at the very thought of letting the girls handle his appearance. Images of Parvarti and Lavender's chats back in the Gryffindor dorm instantly appeared in his mind, something that Harry personally wanted no part in.
"Thanks," the wizard began, polite though rather forced. "But no thanks."
MM shook her head, rolling her eyes in tandem. "Ah, just as I thought; you're hopeless like all the other guys."
"Nah, I think he's one of the salvageable ones for the most part," Hana disagreed, smirking sarcastically. "In some areas anyway!"
The girls burst into a fit of giggles, which had gone politely ignored by the boys as each of them rolled their eyes or in Gokudera's case looked away, growling underneath his breath. It was a rather normal reaction for the most part, and so they continued to talk together in a small group. They looked at the various buildings that came into view, indulging in idle chatter, discussing things that could be accomplished today. Conversations dabbled in what they would even see in the new world they were about to enter.
They seemed to grow happier and more energetic as the minutes passed by. They couldn't help but wonder what might lie on the other side!
Harry couldn't disagree with any of them as he recalled his own first steps into the wizarding world, how marvelous and mysterious everything had been. He was captivated by everything once he passed through Diagon Alley all those years ago.
That had been one of the fondest memories he kept. It was a day Harry would never forget: seeing magic in the air and many of his fellow witches and wizards gathered all in one place. Stopping at all the shops that came into view and gathering everything he needed for his first year at Hogwarts, at the end of the day he was exhausted. The constant stops and people who approached him had been overwhelming before he became accustomed to it.
He soon frowned. Harry knew the first thing he had to do was somehow get a meeting with the Japanese Ministry of Magic. He sincerely doubted it would go over that well, considering he was a foreigner and the minister had more important problems on his hands. From the information Harry and Hermione managed to gather from the school libraries, Voldemort's influence spread across Europe instead of across Britain. Whether that information was accurate, he didn't know. Though it seemed doubtful that Riddle would bother reaching beyond the country before he took it over.
Then again common sense was not something most witches and wizards had. Voldemort certainly fit the bill alright — edging between insane and deranged.
Gamma grunted. "Where exactly is the entrance anyway? It feels like we've been walking around forever." He slid his hands into his pockets, scowling irritably. "How hard can it be to find it?" He inquired flatly.
"Back in England the entrance to the magic side was through a pub called the Leaky Cauldron, but it was concealed with a spell that kept non-magical people away," Harry answered him instantly, emerald eyes flying up at the blond. "There's a chance it will be similar, that there's an enchantment hiding the entrance somewhere nearby." With his wand concealed beneath his sleeve, he watched it spin around and point in the direction they needed to go. He sighed. "It shouldn't take us much longer getting there."
At least he hoped so; with the way his wand was reacting to the magic that surrounded the area, he was getting worried there was interference.
Coming down to Tokyo had been a rather good idea, and Harry wished he realized it earlier. Even so he was happier being with his friends.
Hana wrinkled her nose. "I hope we won't have to go through a pub here."
"That makes two of us," Tsuna murmured darkly, eyes narrowing at the thought of entering a pub with much disdain.
Harry thought that was a rather odd reaction from the normally optimistic brunet. He openly stared at Tsuna's expression. It was strange to see him wearing such a look; it didn't suit him at all. Judging by the way Reborn glanced at his student, it seemed he understood the reason for the sudden mood change in the other. Catching onto the looks he was receiving, the brunet waved his hands and reassured them with a forced smile. He rushed to the front of the group, swaying back and forth as he walked. None of them had the heart to question his behaviour, but frowns were all around before being washed away in acceptance. Gokudera took the lead, joining Tsuna up front, and was quickly followed by Takeshi and Ryohei.
Glancing sideways Harry's eyes met Hana's controlled pools of violet, and slowly he arched a brow at her. She shook her head, frowning tightly. Harry gave the tiniest of nods in response to her, understanding the silent words directed towards him.
For now they would let the matter rest for the moment.
"These shoes are starting to kill me," Hana murmured harshly under her breath.
"If they're so painful to wear, why wear them in the first place?" Harry inquired back, giving her a significant look. That was one of the many questions that plagued him, seeing his Aunt Petunia wear those high heels before complaining how painful they were afterwards. It never made sense to him.
She waved dismissively. "It's a girl thing. Don't worry about it."
"Then I won't." Harry wasn't sure if he even wanted to know the real reason.
Her smirk made him roll his eyes. There was a hint of smugness coming from that smile of hers. Harry gave his head a shake in bemusement, quickening his pace to rejoin the front of the group in tandem with Hana's speed.
Harry's attention was split between his wand and the group's conversations. His wand made very sharp turns in his hand as it barely kept up with the rate it spun. He took solace in that it didn't seem much longer before they reached their destination.
Noticing that his wand began to focus on one general direction, he announced this to everyone else. The look that passed over the group's faces told him everything he needed to know. His mouth twitched slightly, and he pressed his lips together to stop a grin from stretching across his face. Personally the walk hadn't been that bad on his feet. Though he briefly wondered if the relief he had seen was because they were closing in on the Japanese magical community.
The group ended up standing in front of a rather sturdy building with a sign plastered across the top, curving from right to left. On it, 'Chance' was embellished in golden paint on a dark purple background. Clear windows showed merchandise — old and rusted in appearance, yet holding an enticing allure about them. A shop as the entrance? It wasn't a pub at least.
He pushed to the head of the group, entering through the front door nonchalantly. Chimes ringing loudly upon his entry, he made a beeline straight to the front desk, the others following behind him. The inside of the building reminded him eerily of a casino as the layout was greatly spaced out, wrapping around in a circular fashion and spreading far towards the back. Perhaps it was a trick of the eyes, but the back seemed way too far — he was barely able to see it through the dark patches of the shop. Harry's lips curled into a small frown, glancing at the still empty desk.
MM huffed, arms folded against her chest. "What, is this place empty? How lame!"
"Did we really come out all this way here for nothing?" Haru pouted at that thought.
Tsuna didn't seem so sure about that. His lips pressing together thoughtfully and his eyes landed upon the desk. "We could ring the bell that's on there," the brunet remarked, pointing to the bell that lay behind the lamp next to the register.
Takeshi laughed. "Tsuna has a point, let's press it. Someone should show up, the door is open after all. They're probably just in the back!"
"Of course, Jyuudaime!" Gokudera remarked passionately, smirking widely at the brunet and gesturing forwards. "You should press it!"
"H-huh, m-me? I don't think that's a good idea. A-after all Harry is the one that brought us here and is the one that has magic. I think he should be the one who presses it." Tsuna waved his hands frantically in defense, shaking his head wildly and pushing the responsibility onto Harry. "His wand led us here, right? So what if the bell only reacts to someone who's magical? I mean, this is where we're supposed to go." He stumbled over his words fretfully, trying his best to explain his own thoughts.
Hana stared approvingly, allowing a smile to touch her lips. "You could have something there, Tsuna."
"Maybe we might see some magic!" Kyoko commented cheerfully, clapping her hands together at the prospect, giggling happily.
Harry fell silent, thinking over the idea for several moments. It wasn't like they had anything to lose. He hit the bell, causing a sharp, loud echo to pierce through the room. The group fell back into silence, waiting patiently.
"You rang?" A deep baritone voice sang bemusedly. Emerald eyes flew straight to the source and opened widely to discover none other than the Owner. The man's smile was filled with a knowing smugness as his hand rested on his hip. Eyes gleaming with a faint hint of mirth, he approached them from behind the desk, casually and out of nowhere. "I heard you ring the bell, so here I am. I apologize for not being here fast enough." The Owner bowed his head.
While no one commented on his arrival, faint sighs were heard from the girls — Haru in particular, with blushing faces from Kyoko and MM, and a slight redness from Hana. Somehow Harry wasn't surprised by their reactions with how handsome the Owner looked, something that even he had to agree with. The older man was rather dashing. Pushing that thought aside, he knew that it was time to get down to business.
Massaging his temple gained the man's attention. Harry stepped forward once more, standing in front of the other man and just when Harry opened his mouth, the teen was swiftly cut off when his hand was taken and held up.
"Ahhh," the Owner began, approvingly, gazing at the ring attached to his finger. "I see you've been keeping the ring I gave you in good shape!"
Before Harry could even get a word out, the group instantly crowded around him to stare at the ring. Whispers of awe circled in the air as people eyed the object with appreciation. The suddenness of their actions almost made him knock back into the shelves. Feeling rather awkward from their scrutiny, he pulled his hand away as he shuffled on his feet. He didn't like it when people stared like that — though he'd taken some pleasure in that they were impressed by the ring and not his scar. It was a new type of staring that Harry found he didn't quite mind as much and slowly found himself flushing from it.
"That's a beautiful ring. Did you get it from here?" Haru instantly leaped into questioning the object eagerly as her eyes shined brightly.
Reborn didn't seem to share the same glee. "How long have you had that ring?" The non-infant had a stern tone as he eyed him with a frown on his face. His eyes glanced subtly at the Owner and returned onto him. "I haven't seen you wear that ring at all."
What? His brows furrowed as he frowned. "I've been wearing the ring since ... I guess August or around then?" Harry answered hesitantly, licking his lips in thought. It seemed that had been around the time when he first encountered the man.
"The only time I've ever really taken the ring off is when I sleep. Are you just noticing that I have it now?" Something didn't add up. There didn't seem to be any enchantments on the ring as far as Harry could feel. It looked and appeared to be an ordinary ring barring the fact that it allowed him to use magic without being traced. Besides that, it was just a normal ring.
He sincerely doubted it was obliviousness on Reborn's part; Harry learned that little lesson rather quickly. The non-infant was fast on the uptake and always seemed to know more than he let on. Hearing that not even he had noticed it was something to take into account.
The non-infant didn't respond, keeping his stoic gaze and falling completely silent.
Gamma threw the Owner a look. "So are you going to introduce yourself to us, or explain what kind of store this is?" The blond looked rather unimpressed so far, coming off far more annoyed and bored. His hand slid into his pocket as the other swung by his side, his eyes focused on the shelves he stood next to and took to eyeing the wares.
"Ah, my apologies!" The Owner bowed politely, his arm placed over his upper chest. "My name is Owen, and I am the owner of this little establishment. It is an antique shop, more or less, as it also doubles as a bookstore at the far back. You are all welcome to browse for as long as you'd like."
Harry blanched. Owner ... Owen. Okay now that's just terrible! That pun made him want to groan then and there; it was one of the better ones but still!
"Actually, u-um Owen-san, we're trying to well ..." Tsuna hesitated for a moment. "We're trying to find our way to the magic side." Harry's eyes flew towards him, noticing his firm tone, while the brunet stared up at 'Owen.' Unfortunately, it seemed his air of confidence quickly dissolved. "I-I mean, if you know how to get there. I-It would be great!"
It seemed that Tsuna's timidity was for naught as 'Owen' smiled deeply. "Ah, yes. I figured that's what you were here for." He pointed down through the middle of the room. "Straight down there is the door that will lead you to the magical district of Japan; if you're headed to check in with the Ministry head down and just turn to the left. You can't miss the building," the man explained, eyes peering away from the path back to them, wearing a bright smile on his face. "I do hope you'll check what I have in stock before leaving for the day."
"We'll check around," Reborn answered flippantly, frowning thinly.
Deciding to take the lead, Harry led the rest of the group towards the back as they were directed, moving quickly and ending up at a black door. It swung open widely, allowing them to take their first steps into the magical side of Japan.
His eyes widened staring beyond the door as the rays from the sun began to shine down before him. Soft gasps could he heard from his friends, behind him. They were as captivate like himself, unable to tear away from the other side laying before him, it had been their first experience with going to a whole new world.
Harry turned to them and grinned. "Shall we be off?"
Stunning didn't even begin to describe the Japanese magical district. It seemed it was one of the few magical areas that decided to keep up with the modern area, while still managing to keep an ancient feel to it. Instead of robes, pointed hats and sashes, everyone around him was dressed rather normally: muggle-wise for the most part, but keeping with magical trends. Even the buildings — while looking more like normal houses — maintained a sense of old wonder. Smiles broke out on the group's faces as the many stores and constructs entered their lines of sight.
Unfortunately, Harry was forced to split off from the rest of his friends to meet with the Minister for Magic, or at least to schedule some sort of appointment. Not that he knew how long it would take him to meet with someone to arrange said appointment. He didn't have much knowledge when it came to bureaucracy, only that no one played fair and everyone had their own agenda. At least that was what Harry believed after his second and third years at Hogwarts. It added to the distrust he felt towards the adults in the first place; the ones Harry relied on were few and could be counted on one hand. Still there wasn't much of a choice in the matter, so he gathered his courage and headed down the hall, looking around at the large space, allowing his eyes to wander before proceeding on.
Owen handed him the directions to the ministry from his store, but he was uncertain if leaving his friends in the magical side was the brightest idea. They were non-magical; thus if they were caught, it would devolve into absolute chaos, something he wasn't about to let happen. He planned on having them return to the non-magical side once he found the entrance. That way, he'd be able to take care of business while they were exploring Tokyo. However, the Owner ended up reassuring him of their protection by providing them with enchantments and charms while they explored to their hearts' content. While grateful for his assistance, he didn't quite know how to feel, worrying over something supposedly minor. Even so, Harry continued to be rather uncertain, desperately wanting to get back to his friends quickly.
To make matters worse, a lot of the signs that came into view had all been in kanji, something that Harry continued to have difficulty in. Though he got progressively better, there were several characters he still struggled with. He did manage to spot a few signs in English written here and there; there were signs in German and one in French as well. It brought him relief to know that the area seemed to be multi-lingual.
Taking in the surrounding area, the liveliness of the people stuck out the most. The excited energy bouncing off the crowds hadn't gone unnoticed by Harry. He watched them, taking note of the more modern styled clothing that some of the younger people wore. Their robes seemed to resemble suits, but retained long tails at the end with wrappings around the front. Wearing ties did not seem to come off as school uniforms but rather casual wear.
Older folk continued to wear traditional styled clothing from what he could understand. Not exactly kimonos, but they held an air of distinction around them. The vast difference in demeanour had also caught him by surprise, and as he nodded kindly to an elderly woman, she returned the gesture.
Tearing his gaze away, Harry focused his attention to getting to the Ministry of Magic.
Thankfully, someone had been polite enough to direct him towards the main desk of the building. Sitting in front, a woman was busy looking through some files, eyes narrowed and all, focused upon the work in front of her. He waited for several moments before realizing that in order to gain her attention he'd have to interrupt her work. He gave a tiny cough, which went unnoticed. His lips curled slightly and he glanced around nervously before coughing once more. Once again she didn't notice.
"Um ... sorry, excuse me. Miss?" Harry spoke up clearly, this time grabbing her attention.
The secretary placed her file on the desk, plastering a smile on her face. "Yes. May I help you, little boy?"
Irritation spiked within him, but he ignored it. "Yes, actually. I was wondering if it would be possible to talk with the Japanese Minister for Magic or schedule an appointment with him? It's important, miss," Harry answered her diplomatically, ignoring the condescending stare she gave him.
"I will try to schedule you in for an appointment, but I make no promises," she responded to him curtly, glancing back at him once she opened a book. "Your name?"
"Harry, miss. Harry Potter."
Those words made her freeze in place and drop her quill. She stared at him for several moments, opening her mouth before it closed abruptly. Her eyes flickered to his forehead; swallowing thickly, she stood up. While she openly stared at the scar she nodded, swallowing visibly as she passed her desk.
"I shall go and inform the Minister immediately. Please wait here." She disappeared quickly behind the doors to the right, and not even a moment later did she emerge, straightening in a professional posture and nodding her head. "Potter-sama, the Minister shall see you now."
That was fast. He didn't complain, however, and calmly proceeded to the next room, giving her his thanks and flashing a polite smile before fully entering the office. It looked almost as big as Professor Dumbledore's office, except it was covered in dark navy colors mixed with green and red. Along the walls were cabinets and at the front of the room, deep red drapes extended across the wall, curving inwards. Harry inhaled upon entering, his eyes landing on the man who sat in his chair by the desk in the front.
"I bid you welcome, Potter-sama." The teen felt his body coming to a halt, as he looked at the man before him, a very tall man with a sharp suit and oddly enough deep green hair. From appearances alone, Harry pegged him to be at least in his late thirties to early forties. "I am Kimura Makoto, the Japanese Minister. It is an honour to meet you face to face." He gestured to the chair before his desk. "Please take a seat."
Harry blinked, stunned, and rubbed the back of his neck. He was still confused as to why the man had green hair of all things! Silently, he sat in the chair before the minister. "J-Just Harry would be fine, sir. Erm ... I mean, Kimura-sama?" Suffixes were also not his forte as he stumbled over it briefly and wondered if he used it correctly now.
"I don't really understand why it's an honour to meet me. I mean, I'm just me after all," Harry elaborated, further confused by the respectful tone and bow he was given.
Kimura appeared perplexed before a dawning expression appeared. "You are a legend, Harry. Your name has reached the far corners of the earth; your defeat of the Dark Lord is well known in each magical community."
"Why though?" Harry frowned thinly at the answer. "I thought Voldemort was just a European problem."
"Do not fool yourself, child. Voldemort wasn't just a simple Dark Lord; he was literally the most feared Dark Lord through the ages. A man so twisted, so evil, wouldn't stop his reign of terror to just your country," Kimura stated grimly, his expression hardened. "That ... monster was an abomination! It was good you stopped him when you had; otherwise the world would have been plunged into chaos. Believe me when I say that no one wanted someone of the likeness of Grindelwald and Hitler."
Harry could not deny that the Minister had a point in that regard. Voldemort wasn't the type to simply be satisfied with just conquering a mere country. He would have expanded his war across the borders, slowly taking continent after continent. "I know what you're trying to say, but I still don't think it was all me. My mother planned a part in his downfall, at least." His emerald eyes flickered at the taller man, nervously. He felt awkward, as he was, unable to truly accept the praise he was given. It made him feel like a child. "That's what I believe anyway. I don't know if she used some sort of magic or even did something to me prior to her death."
"You are very modest, Harry." The Minister nodded sharply. "Very modest indeed. However that isn't the reason why you've come to meet me here today. Is it not?"
"Ah, well yes. Kind of, sir." Harry didn't even know where to start. "To be blunt, my relatives dumped me here in Japan with only my passport, my wand and a few personal items. I don't want to cause any trouble, sir, but I thought to let you know of the situation to avoid possible consequences."
Kimura's lips pressed thinly. "I will talk with Foreign Affairs to see what they'll be able to do. It might take awhile. I assuming you are staying somewhere in the non-magical side?"
"Yeah, how'd you guess?"
"Call it intuition," the Minister responded cryptically, smiling faintly. As he waved his hand dismissively, he rose from his chair. "I will send you a letter via an owl once I am able to get an update on the matter. But," he leaned forward on his desk, "You should be aware that your disappearance from the British wizarding community had caused a bit of a commotion. Understand this: I will be forced to reveal your location as my silence would cause friction between our two countries."
Harry fell silent at the man's words. "I don't really know what I want to tell you," he confessed to him truthfully. A part of him desired to say something to his friends back home, yet there was another part within that prevented him from doing so.
"I see. When you have decided, please let me know," Kimura vowed calmly. "Now is that all?"
No. That wasn't all ... the teen paused, licking his lips slowly as he thought of how to approach this possible problem. It might be the only chance he got, and frankly Harry wasn't going to blow it. Summoning every ounce of strength and courage that laid deep within, he held his head up high and met the man with determination.
"Minister Kimura ... what do you know of the Sirius Black case?"
Sirius Chronicles 2
Zakuro. The man who spotted Sirius using magic was Zakuro.
After failing to defuse the situation, things took a strange turn when the younger man had prompted Sirius to follow him home. Though suspicious of the request, Sirius's own curiosity hadn't relented. Tagging from behind, he kept a reasonable distance between the two, cautious and distrustful of the young man before him.
His knowledge of how far his infamy had spread across the world remained a mystery to the wizard. Keeping a low profile since leaving Britain had been successful so far, and he had absolutely no desire to return to the hellhole that was Azkaban Prison — or worse, receiving the Kiss under Fudge's orders. Sirius shuddered at the very thought of it. Running away now seemed almost pointless since he already agreed to the redhead. He was perturbed by how quickly the man asked him to follow.
Taking in the surrounding area, the wizard couldn't help but notice the dead trees and rot they passed by. It struck him as odd since it was still summer. Then again what did he know of Italy and the way their seasons worked? Absolutely nothing. Still ... his lips curled into a thin frown as he continued to accompany the younger man walking hurriedly ahead of him. Sirius shook his head. Who was he to question where one lived?
After all with where he grew up, anywhere had to be better than Grimmauld Place!
It wasn't until he had stumbled upon an old, wrecked wooden shack that Sirius began to rethink his previous thoughts. How could anyone live in something like that? Never mind that it looked ready to topple over, but it looked old. Very, very old and worn down, and that wasn't even bringing up the size either! The shack was far too small for someone like Zakuro to live in by himself. His worst fears were confirmed upon entering the house and gazing around the one room.
The hovel was far too cramped, barely having enough room for anyone to sleep. A table was in the very centre of the room, taking up the majority of the 'house,' with shelves taking up another small chunk and a 'kitchen' that looked barely usable on the opposite end — and lastly a bed. Just one bed.
Things grew even worse once he realized that there was a young girl lying in the bed, cheeks swelled red. Forcing her eyes open, she greeted the two with a forced, tired smile. "W-welcome home," she croaked, and then coughed terribly.
Zakuro moved towards her in a split second, holding her shoulders gently as she shook in his arms. The expression that appeared on his face said everything. The sheer desperation that gleamed so helplessly ... that was enough for him to understand why the younger man had brought Sirius here.
His sister was sick. So very, very sick and needed help. His knowledge in the medical arts was limited. What he knew of the required healing magics and medical potions came from the Auror Corps and from attending Hogwarts. Even so, he was the best bet they had. Sirius didn't know this little girl, but he'd make sure to do his best to help her.
If their positions were reversed and this girl was Harry, he wouldn't have hesitated getting as much help as possible for his godson.
Sirius looked to Zakuro. "I'll help."
Chapter 16 end.
The long awaited chapter 16 has finally arrived! Sorry for the long wait, real life has been busy for both myself as well as my amazing beta, whom all of you should give thanks to! But you'll be pleased to know that chapter 19 has started with 17 and 19 currently being edited! So please look forward to it!
With the revelation of magic to the group, the plot is going to start picking up!
Until next time!
Make sure to leave a constructive review!