My writing starts in this chapter; I'll let you know when my part starts.
I took some quotes from the book, seeing as some of the dialogue was in the book. Page 65, 66 and 67, if you were wondering. From Prisoner of Azkaban, obviously.
Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling owns Harry Potter and its characters. Jericho, the plot and a part of this chapter is owned by Bloody Phantom.
Chapter One; The Train Ride
Thirteen year old, Jericho Slyder opened his book and began reading, disregarding the meeting with the Headmaster. His newly appointed foster parents had adopted him a week ago and brought him to Scotland to register him into Hogwarts. He knew from past experiences that there was no chance of him entering Hogwarts or any magical school. Not in the United Kingdom anyway. Two years ago he managed to enter a Romanian school, but then his foster parents decided they didn't want to deal with a werewolf anymore and gave him back. He was use to such behavior. It happened at least eight times within his life time, the other times the parents saw that he was a werewolf and picked another kid. It was a good thing his mother gave him up for adoption at a Greek orphanage instead of a British one. He would have been thrown to the streets then.
It was just one of his theories that it was his mother who gave him up. Jericho wasn't bitten by a werewolf, so he must have been born one. In his mind, his mother didn't know his father was werewolf (or she was raped, which was more likely, but he didn't want to think of himself as a product of rape). When she realized his father was a werewolf, she left him. Then she realized she was pregnant, so gave him up as soon as he was born. It was the best theory he came up with and that was what he told people when they asked.
He sighed, causing a piece of light brown hair fell from its place on his head. The boy glared at it with amber eyes, as if daring it to try that again before pushing it back into place with his left hand. Jericho was slightly pale and thin scars marred his skin. The rare times when he went into public, muggle place, he used glamours as to not attract unwanted attention. Around full moons, heavy bags formed under his eyes, but he was yet to grow any grey hairs, for which he was thankful for. He always found teenagers with grey hair rather odd.
"Welcome to Hogwarts, Mr. Slyder!"
The sentence caught Jericho off guard. He looked up from his book at the old grandfatherly Headmaster. He must have been pulling his chain. Why would a United Kingdom Headmaster accept him into his school? They were the most prejudice against werewolves. "But I'm a werewolf, sir," was the first sentence he managed to blurt out.
The Headmaster chuckled. "I know, Mr. Slyder. You would not be the first werewolf to pass these walls."
Jericho didn't remember reading anything about a werewolf coming to Hogwarts. He can imagine something like that would be all over the news. "I don't remember hearing about that, sir," he said, thinking it might be possible he was being lied too.
"We kept it from the other students and Ministry, Mr. Slyder. I believe every child should have a chance at a good education, no matter what. That student went through his seven years here without much problem. As a matter of fact, he is teaching here this year. If you have any questions or issues dealing with keeping your secret from other students then you may go to him."
The thought of talking to another werewolf, one that lived through school hiding his secret from everyone, was appalling to Jericho. He never civilly spoke to another werewolf. Most of them were wild. One that went through school would be tame and worth talking to. But talking to an adult? He was never comfortable talking to adults. He was disappointed by so many of them. Taking him then throwing him back as soon he becomes 'too difficult' or right after a full moon.
"Listen to me, Jericho. I want you to stay out of trouble. The Headmaster is risking a lot to let you go to school," his adopted father, Mr. Dan Slyder, said sternly.
Jericho nodded half heartedly. He didn't really care for these parents. It made him wish he was able to choose to go back into the System and pick new ones, or not pick any at all. His 'new' parents adopted him only three weeks ago and they are sending him to boarding school right away. It's like they didn't want to take care of him. They wanted a son but they didn't want to deal with a son.
Without hugs or kisses, Jericho left the Slyders standing on the platform and went on to the train. He stared down the corridor at all the compartments, watching as old students greeted one another and sat in compartments they've been sitting in for years. He closed his eyes and breathed in. It was a calming technique he developed. It helped him indentify his surroundings, to see if there were any threats of any kind around and get familiar with those close around him. Something in the air caught his attention. He didn't know how to describe it, but it was nonthreatening. It was peaceful and calming…protective. Jericho opened his eyes and slowly made his way down the corridor, allowing his instinct to take over.
He came to a compartment near the back of the train and stopped. With a heavily beating heart, he slowly opened the door. There was a man there, leaning against the window. A coat covered him like a blanket and his eyes were closed. He breathed deeply in sleep. Jericho stepped quietly into the compartment. He felt safer here then out there; which was weird since he didn't like strangers…or adults…and there was one sleeping in the compartment.
He sat across from the man and stared at him. The man looked exhausted. It was no wonder he was taking this time to sleep. Jericho, himself, was tired because the full moon was only in a few days. He breathed in the man's scent, trying to get a sense of how trustworthy the man might be. There was something off about his scent. Jericho eyes widen when he realize just what was different. He sensed it before on many other wild men. He eyed the sleeping professor. He was a werewolf. The werewolf the Headmaster must have talked about during the meeting. Is that why Jericho felt calm in his presence? He shook his head. No, it couldn't be. Jericho had been around werewolves before. If anything, it made him feel uptight and aware, not really threatened, but just…prepared. Prepared to run or fight. Of course those werewolves weren't tamed. They were wild ones. This one would be more tamed, being around 'normal' humans for who knew how long. Maybe that made a difference. Perhaps, he was calm because his sixth sense knew this werewolf would not harm him. Whatever it was, it was a nice change. Jericho had always been uptight around anyone. It came with being a lonely orphan since birth.
Suddenly, the compartment door slid opened and Jericho found himself looking at three kids around his own age; two boys and a girl. "Oh!" the girl gasped in surprised. "We're sorry." She stepped into the compartment. "Do you mind if we sit here with you?" she asked.
Jericho shrugged his shoulders and turned away. The girl seemed nice enough, but they were always nice at first…and then they find out. That was what it was like here in the United Kingdom. He'd been here twice before when he was six and then later when he was ten. He tried to make friends both times and thought he succeed until they found out he was a werewolf. To distract himself from his thoughts, he pulled out his book from his luggage that sat on the seat next to him, preventing anyone from sitting to close to him.
The three other students sat awkwardly, stealing glances at Jericho and the professor. He ignored them and continued to focus on his book.
"So, Harry, you wanted to tell us something?" the red haired boy asked, awkwardly.
The black haired boy gave Jericho a side glance before turning his attention back to the red head. He shook his head. "I'll tell you two later."
Jericho rolled his eyes, realizing he was stopping a private conversation from taking place. He slammed his book shut, startling the other students, and placed it back in his trunk. "I'll be back in ten minutes or so. If anyone touches my trunk you'll be sorry," he threatened as he got up. He headed for the compartment door, but stopped before opening it. He knew from experience that when you threaten someone, they usually test you, see if you're serious in your threat, but believing you aren't. There are times, regrettably, when the nice approach had better results. He turned back to the three curious schoolmates. "Please, don't touch my trunk. Everything I own is in there and it's very personal to me." Although, his adopted parents gave him a room and many clothes and toys (in which, he will never even touch) that he left at their house, everything in his trunk was what he carried with him from family to family and home to home.
The black haired kid…Harry, was it?...nodded. "We won't. Promise."
Oddly enough, Jericho had a sense that the kid understood. Was he an orphan as well, carrying all his personal stuff everywhere he went? Or was he just the type that couldn't stand to be away from his precious things, so, tries to carry as much of it around? Something told him the boy's story closer matched the former then the latter. "Thanks." He said, leaving the compartment.
He didn't really need to use the restroom. So, he didn't know what to do with himself now. For the next twenty minutes found Jericho walking up and down the train corridor. By the time twenty minutes have passed he figured they should be done with their private conversation. And if not…oh well. He was not spending another minute out in the hall. He headed back to his compartment.
The girl cut off mid-sentence when Jericho opened the compartment door. By the annoyed and frustrated looks, he knew they weren't done talking, but…as said before…he was not spending another minute in the corridor. He was nice enough to leave in the first place. He decided when to come back, not them. He ignored them and made his way back to his seat. He could feel their eyes on him, but he kept his eyes down, focusing on getting his book out of his trunk. He slouched in his seat and opened the book.
Jericho looked up from his book and saw the girl holding her hand out. He quickly analyzed the situation. Here was a girl offering the first step to friendship. He could either be rude and deny her offer or respond and have her think he wanted to become friends. However, this time was different then the other times. Usually, he would deny any offer of friendship. He was never around long enough to keep them anyhow. This time, though, he would surely be here until, at least, the end of the school year. In other schools, having a werewolf became too stressful for the headmasters or headmistresses. They would, kindly, ask for him to be homeschooled or change schools. That was usually when his foster parents got rid of him. This time, however, was different. Hogwarts already had a werewolf attend seven years of school and that werewolf was now teaching. Something told him, he would be able to spend a full year at one school. That would be almost nine and a half months. He would be able to keep friends around for once. It would be unavoidable. Nine and a half months of sleeping in the same dorm room, getting friends were bound to happen. But did he want to be friends with the three kids sitting with him? Was that what he wanted?
Making a decision, Jericho sat up. "Jericho Slyder." He didn't shake her hand. Physical contact wasn't his cup of tea and, to him, it meant friends. Shaking her hand would be like including her to be a good friend, which she was not…at least, not yet.
The girl, Granger, dropped her hand. "I haven't seen you before and you look too old to be a first year."
"I'm new." He answered bluntly.
There was a moment of silence before the red-haired kid spoke. "Ron Weasley."
Jericho nodded his greeting towards the boy and turned to the black-haired kid. If he remembered correctly the red-haired kid, Weasley, had called him Harry before.
The boy seemed to hesitate before giving Jericho what he wanted. "Harry. Harry Potter." The boy said tensely.
"Pleasure." Jericho said. Potter. Potter. Where had he heard that name? It sounded familiar. Suddenly, it hit him. "The boy that survived that death curse or whatever?" He asked. He faintly remembered hearing about him before.
Potter looked surprised, but nodded his head. "Yeah."
Jericho stared at him. "No need to look so surprise that I know." He said, rolling his eyes.
Potter gave him a sheepish look. "Sorry, it's not that. It's just…most people associate myself with Voldemort's death first and then surviving the impossible. And having it said so…casually? It's just…new."
Jericho snorted. "Like any other country cares about Lord whats-his-face." He said sarcastically. "That was Britain's problem."
"You're not from the United Kingdom?" Weasley asked.
Jericho raised an eyebrow at the red haired kid. "What gave that away?" He asked that in a so straightforward way that they couldn't tell if he was being sarcastic or not.
This is when I start! I also added the description of Jericho up there, but… whatever!
Weasley blinked, not sure how to respond to that. "Erm, your accent?" He meant it as a statement, but it came out as more of a question than anything else.
Jericho gave the red head a funny look before stating, "I was being sarcastic."
Potter snorted and Granger only just managed to hold in a giggle, causing Weasley to send them a nasty glare.
Sensing an incoming argument, Jericho shifted in his seat and looked out the window, zoning out the other teens' conversation. The green landscape rushed by, blurring together with the brown of the tree bark and the blue of the sky. Letting the sight of the nature calm him, he closed his eyes and allowed himself to drift into the world of unconsciousness.
What seemed like the next moment, his eyes snapped open. He heard the voices of the others in the cabin- there were more people than before, five or six by the sound of it. Something was wrong, that much the boy could tell. He narrowed his eyes, concentrating, trying to hear the sound of the train, but there was no noise. The train wasn't moving. Why?
Trying to access the problem further, he looked at the other people in the compartment. The werewolf teacher seemed to be asleep still, but that may be a ruse, Potter, Granger, Weasley, a red haired girl and a blonde, round faced boy all looked worried, nervous and scared, their eyes darting around, seeming to look for something.
'But why are they... Oh. The lights are all off. Thank Merlin for enhanced eye sight.' Jericho thought while also noticing that the temperature seemed to have dropped.
Over the frantic voices of the kids, a hoarse voice broke through. "Quiet!"
An odd calmness washed through him as he heard the voice and Jericho didn't like it. Not that he didn't like the feeling itself, but he didn't know why he felt this way around the teacher and the boy hated not knowing thing in general, let alone about himself. Though it was an issue that he had to live with, seeing as his whole past was a mystery.
Jericho saw the professor- Professor R. J. Lupin, according to his briefcase, he noted- hold out his hand and mutter something softly under his breath. A small flame ignited in his hand, filling the cabin with flickering light. The flame illuminated his tired face and few grey hairs, all common for an adult werewolf.
Professor Lupin's eyes quickly scanned the cabin, resting on Potter and himself for an extra moment. He suspected it was due to Potter's fame and Lupin recognizing Jericho as a werewolf.
"Stay where you are," he said in the same hoarse yet calming voice. He stood slowly and reached towards the door.
Before he could reach it, the door slid open.
Standing there, the red of the flame illuminating its features, was a tall, cloaked figure. It's face was hidden by the hood and a grey, slimy and scabbed hand was protruding from the cloak.
Jericho recognized it from one of his text books. A Dementor. Why was a Dementor, a guard of Azkaban, on a train full of kids?
That was his last thought before an overwhelming coldness overtook his body, sending him into shivers. In the back of his mind, he realized what was happening; the Dementor was forcing him to relive his worst memory.
Pain. The pain of his body changing, the bones moving and repositioning, fur pushing through his skin, claws slowly growing from his hands. A strangled moan escaped his throat.
Then it was over. He opened his eyes to see a white ball of light pushing the Dementor away and Professor Lupin holding out his wand towards it.
"A patronus," he muttered to himself. He made a mental note to learn how to do that.
"Harry! Harry! Are you alright?" A female voice snapped him out of his thoughts.
He looked to the ground of the compartment and saw Potter laying there, appearing to just wake up. His friends were hovering above him, looking at him with worry clear in their eyes. Jericho grimaced, realizing what The-Boy-Who-Lived must have relived and understanding at once why he has passed out.
"W-what?" Said boy asked groggily.
Potter opened his bright green eyes, blinking at the light. He slowly reached up to his face and pushed his glasses back into position. The ginger and red head pulled him back into his seat.
"Are you OK?" Weasley asked nervously.
Jericho, once again, ignored them and focused on his own thoughts. Why would a Dementor be on the Hogwarts express? The guard prisons, not children! He narrowed his eyes in concentration, scanning his mind for anything that would explain their presence. The picture of a newspaper popped into his mind. A man with shaggy black hair was on the front page. Sirius Black.
Jericho had seen the paper a few days ago, and with nothing better to do, he had scanned through it absentmindedly. He suppose it made sense, sending guards to keep the kids safe, but… why Dementors of all things? That's just-
He jumped slightly, looking at Lupin, who had a large slab of chocolate in his hand and was snapping it into pieces.
"Here," he said, handing Potter a rather large piece of the brown treat. "Eat it. It'll help."
The boy took the chocolate but didn't eat it. With all the people that must be after The-Boy-Who-Lived's blood, Jericho wasn't surprised that he was suspicious of a stranger's food. Even if, for some inexplicable reason, Jericho- the King of Not Trusting- trusted the man.
"What was that thing?" Potter asked Lupin.
"A Dementor," said the teacher, who was now giving chocolate to everyone else, including Jericho. The boy sniffed the piece of candy imperceptibly. It had no funny smell, so it wasn't poisoned or laced with any sort of potion. Normally, Jericho wouldn't have had any anyway, but that damned feeling the man gave him… He took a bite of the chocolate. "One of the Dementors of Azkaban."
Weasley, Granger and the two newcomers stared at him with wide, horrified eyes, having likely read about them somewhere, while Potter just looked more confused. Professor Lupin crumpled up the empty chocolate wrapper and put it in his pocket.
"Eat," he repeated, looking at Potter. "It'll help. I need to speak to the driver, excuse me…"
He s stepped past them all and disappeared into the corridor.
"Are you sure you're okay, Harry?" said the bushy haired witch, watching Potter anxiously.
Not wanting to have to listen to the other teenagers worry over Potter, Jericho rose from his seat and made his way to the door. He had opened the door and was about to walk away when a voice called from behind him.
He turned to see Potter standing up and looking at him. He raised an eyebrow at the boy.
"I'll see you later, alright?" He asked innocently, holding out his hand.
Jericho looked into his eyes and blinked. 'So, we're already on first name basis then?' He thought absentmindedly. Going over the same thoughts he had when he had first introduced himself, the brown haired boy reached out his arm, taking P-Harry's hand in his own and shaking it lightly.
"Of course… Harry." He replied, pausing slightly before saying his name, as he had been thinking of him as 'Potter' the whole train ride.
After retracting his hand, he nodded goodbye to the others and left, hoping to find a quite compartment to think about all that had just happened.
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Erm… I mean… Please review, you know, if you have time… and stuff…