Disclaimer: We don't own Harry Potter or Persona 3(The Journey/The Answer/Portable) they are owned by J.K. Rowling and Atlas. A note to our readers, we won't be using the Harry Potter timeline for this story, Persona timeline through and through.
'Persona Speaking to Partner (Harry's Persona Only)'
"Inhabitants of the Velvet Room/Shadows/Pharos speaking"
[Dream Sequence/Flashback Start/End Notice]
-Number Four Privet Drive, Surrey, Britain/14:59, 1999-
I lay curled into a ball, on my cot, in the cupboard under the stairs. Tears poured silently from my emerald colored eyes as the bruises my cousin, Dudley, had given me ached. My left arm was clutched to my chest as sharp pain lanced through it, starting at both my wrist and my shoulder.
I winced when the grandfather clock my uncle, Vernon, had inherited began to toll the hour. The sound seemingly shook the house.
After the third toll the world turned green and blood poured from cracks in the walls of the cupboard. The air became stagnant as the sound of static filled the near void.
The soft sound of something slithering across the wooden floor followed by an echoing, guttural moan reverberated through the deadened air. The haunting wail forced me to curl tighter into my ball. My fear was palpable.
A black ooze slid under the door and began to crawl towards me. I pulled tighter into my ball and pushed myself further into the wall opposite the door as the thing slithered closer.
A sky blue, oval shaped mask formed from the black goop. Two empty eye sockets stared from beneath the Roman numeral "I".
The strange thing shrieked before lunging forward. The ooze surged towards me, threatening to engulf my body.
Blue fire encompassed me and exploded outward. I felt my mouth move without my consent.
-Iwatodai Station, Iwatodai, 23:57, April 5, 2009-
Jerking awake, my eyes darted about, I took in my surroundings. I inhaled deeply; I was still on the train. I blinked when I felt a hand land on my shoulder. Turning I saw my cousin, not Dudley, staring at me with her concerned ruby colored eyes. I smiled, if only to put her at ease. She smiled softly before jerking her head towards the window, she then stood. I blinked again, once more in confusion, before I looked out the window. My eyes widened when I noticed that Iwatodai station was outside my window. Jumping to my feet I grabbed my duffle bag from the luggage rack above my head. Moving out of the train and past the ticket counters I approached my cousin, who was waiting for me near the exit.
The gentle tick-tock of the large clock, hanging above our heads, echoed over the murmurs of the other people in the station. The seconds hand ticked away the remaining minute to midnight. As the three clock hands aligned a loud gong like sound resounded through the, slightly chilled, air.
Time froze as the world became tinted green. Every electronic device shut off, even my cousin's MP3. Blood began to flow down the walls in thin streams. The other people in the station all transformed into obsidian coffins, an unholy red light being emitted from beneath their feet.
We exited the station, already used to this "Green Time" and its effects on a majority of the human populace. We were greeted by the sight of a giant yellow moon floating directly above us. The nearly full orb loomed like some deadly omen. The unnatural light illuminated the dead expanse with its unholy glow. The sound of static was minute in the background.
I sighed before pulling out a yellowed piece of parchment. Unfolding it revealed a map of the city with a red line from "Iwatodai Station" to a building labeled "Kirijo Dorms". I showed my cousin the map and she nodded.
We set off in the direction of the dorms. We passed the obsidian coffins and the blood colored puddles. The darkness, that hid where the few lights wouldn't reach, shifted as if alive.
-"GT":25:00, Naganaki Shrine -
"Aniki," my cousin's voice echoed through the deadened air. "We're lost," she glared at me as we walked down the steps of the Naganaki Shrine. "Again!"
"Gomen Hamuko-chan," I said, my head bent in shame.
I handed her the map and made an "after you" motion. She huffed before stomping down the street. I followed her, silently cursing my lack of direction. As Hamuko once said, "If you put him behind the wheel he'll be able to take you anywhere, but make him go by foot and he's doomed to get lost."
-Kirijo Dorms, "GT":59:30-
We now stood outside of the dormitory; it would have looked inviting at any other time of day. The four story brick building loomed over us like some form of crypt.
We walked through the front door and entered a lobby that looked like it belonged in a lavish hotel.
Hamuko was bent over a small red book; she seemed to be signing it.
My hair stood on end and my eyes darted about the room looking for the unnatural feeling. The dark, void like presence was behind the check in counter. Whatever the source was, it was inhuman and unnatural. Shivers passed down my spine and I felt my body tense.
Hamuko stood up and the presence disappeared, only to reappear directly in front of me. Faintly I heard a child's voice speak. "Even an Omen can become a Guardian."
I closed my eyes and let my inner energy flow to the surface. Reopening my eyes I heard Hamuko gasp softly. My now ruby red irises were married to my now slit pupils and black sclera. I focused on where the source of the odd presence was.
Standing in front of me was a black haired boy wearing old fashioned prison stripe pajamas. The "boy" was smiling a Mona Lisa Smile. "Time is something no one can escape. It delivers us all to the same end. Wishing won't make it go away." The void like presence built up into a wave of dark emotions. "You can close your eyes and cover your ears, but you can't stop the inevitable." The "child's" words were on a whole new level of creepy. "And so it begins…"
Before our very eyes he vanished into the shadows, that damnable smile still on his face. When the boy disappeared the void like presence vanished as well. I sighed before letting my inner energy recede. Just as the last dregs of energy were pulled back I heard the sound of stealthy footsteps on soft carpet.
"Who's there?" a female voice called out.
Both Hamuko and I turned to the source of the voice only to find a frightened teenage girl wearing a pink sweater jacket. She reached for something attached to her thigh. My eyes darted to the object only to widen at the sight of a silver gun.
Without a single thought for my safety I stepped between Hamuko and the pink wearing girl. I felt my mouth twist into a feral snarl and my eyes narrowing into a fierce glare.
The fear on the girl's face increased ten-fold. She brought the gun out of the holster, but before she could use it another voice called out, halting the girl.
"Takeba wait!" a mature voice called out causing the girl to turn toward the staircase behind her where a red headed young woman, dressed far more formally than that of the girl in pink, stood. Her presence soothed the girl, Takeba, if her sigh was anything to go by.
"Sempai," Takeba called out as the red head walked towards the little congregation in the lobby. The lights turn on and the two women relaxed.
The red head took a step forward before speaking. "We didn't think you'd get here so late." She gave us a small smile before turning to the girl in pink. "These two are transfer students who will be staying with us in the dorm."
"Is it alright for them to be here?" the girl in pink asked, talking as if we weren't there and that we may do something purposefully dangerous or some such thing.
I increased the intensity of my glare as I took great offence to both the comment and her acting as if we weren't there. She gave a strangled squeak and tried to hide behind her sempai, in vain as the older girl stepped to the side to avoid the glare.
The red head smirked slightly. "We'll see now, won't we?" She paused as if she remembered something. "My apologies, I forgot to introduce myself didn't I?" She gave a self patronizing smile. "I am Kirijo Mitsuru and this," she gestures to the girl in pink. "This is Takeba Yukari." She turned to the girl in pink, Takeba, and then motioned to us. "The girl…"
I coughed into my hand to draw attention to myself, when I noticed that both of the young women were looking at me, and Hamuko had stopped bristling at the girl comment, I spoke. "Young woman," I corrected Kirijo.
"My mistake," Kirijo apologized. "This young woman is Arisato Hamuko." Hamuko smiled from her position behind me. "She'll be joining your grade this spring, Takeba. The young man is Potter Harry; he'll be in third year with me." I stopped glaring and nodded to the two young women.
Takeba, looking sheepish, tried to smile. "It's nice to meet you."
Luckily for Takeba, Kirijo stepped in with her attention focused on us. "Do you have any questions?"
Hamuko and I looked at each other silently agreeing that we had questions. Turning back to Kirijo and Takeba we spoke in unison, surprising the two.
"Yeah," Hamuko said. "What's with the guns?"
"Yeah," I said. "Is this a girls' dorm?"
Kirijo looked between the two of us before deciding that my question would be answered first. "No, it's a Co-ed dorm, the other male is studying in his room tonight."
Takeba tried to answer Hamuko's question. "They're a hobby…I guess…" she floundered for a few moments before Kirijo saved her.
"They are purely for self defense," she said and I could tell it was a half truth at best. "They aren't real guns." Probably true, but I felt as if something was off with that statement. "Their only purpose is to bluff others." My bullshit radar went mad at that utter load of crock.
I glanced at Hamuko when she let out a, probably exaggerated, yawn. I put on a false smile and began to yawn myself. "The night wares on and we have been traveling, shall we not retire?" It's true, I was tired and the two of us had been traveling since eight in the morning, only arriving so late because of delays in the train schedule.
Kirijo's lips twitched into the phantom of a smile and she nodded before speaking. "It is getting late," she said after checking her wristwatch. "Arisato-san I believe Takeba would be glad to show you to your room on the third floor." She turned to me with a delicate smile. "Now Potter-san I'll show you to your room on the second floor. Also your things are already in your rooms."
I silently followed her up the stairs to the second floor, waving good night to Hamuko as she followed her guide up to the third floor, her eyes glued to the underneath of her guide's short skirt. I followed Kirijo down the Hallway to the door at the very end, subconsciously noting the light emanating from the bottom of the door opposite. She handed me a key and gestured to the door. I gave a brief "thank you" as I accepted the key before opening the door with a twist of the handle. I glanced around the room before turning back to Kirijo. "Thank you Kirijo-san," I gave a brief nod and she frowned.
"Please call me Mitsuru; we are in the same grade after all."
I smiled, this time far less forced. "As you wish Mitsuru-san, but as custom dictates I must ask you to call me by my given name, Harry."
"Very well," she said as if it were a great task she was being charged with, although her visible eye and the quirking of her lips told otherwise.
"Good night," I said before walking into my room. A soft "good night Harry-san" accompanied by the sound of her footsteps on the carpet, announced that she had left. Turning and closing the door I took in the mirror above the sink and the desk pressed up against the wall, along with several cardboard boxes stacked against the wall opposite. Sighing I channeled my inner energy to the surface for a second time, my eyes changing once more. I looked around the room and noticed a small camera attached to the ceiling above the door. Moving quickly I removed the offending device and destroyed it. The energy faded.
I walked over to the bed and lay down on it. My hand subconsciously coming up to my neck to touch the black silk choker and the small pendant, in the shape of a circle with the Roman numeral "XIII", attached to it. 'This year should be a good one,' I thought to myself.
'Yes,' a dark, gravel like voice replied. 'It shall prove most interesting.'
I let the darkness claim me as I slipped into, far more pleasant, dreams.
I am co-writing this with my friend AkkidenMikuo and will be publishing this story on my account, although we may publish omake on his.