Categories > Books > Harry Potter > Harry Hibiki and the Philosopher's Stone

Chapter 14

by USA_Tiger 1 review

n/a

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Crossover - Characters: Harry,Lupin,Snape,Sprout - Warnings: [!!] - Published: 2015-04-03 - 11146 words

1Original
Harry Hibiki and the Philosopher's Stone

Disclaimer: Harry Potter © J. K. Rowling and Ranma 1/2 © Rumiko Takahashi

Author note: Thanks once again to my beta Blissfull Wulf.

Chapter 14

Harry grinned to himself as he looked around the transformed old dueling hall. The night before he had received a note left by a House Elf informing the kids that the hall was now free for them to use. Harry knew that the Kuno siblings would likely practice in the afternoon which gave Harry time to have it to himself this morning. There had been a lot of work put into cleaning the hall within just a day.

The room seemed to sparkle now that it was free of years of dust and grime. The dueling stage had been removed and half of the room was now covered in practice mats. In the corner of the room were two cabinets, the original one that had been there before which was locked up tight and a new one that contained the promised wooden practice swords.

The teachers desk that had been at the head of the room had been replaced by a long table surrounded by chairs and a bookcase along the wall behind it. Harry gave the books a quick look, there were more than just old dueling books on the shelves, he saw several different books on all of the different subjects in the school. No doubt all of them age appropriate for the first years. There was also enough space left over for the first years to add their own books if they wished.

‘Flitwick-sensei seems determined to turn this old classroom into something useful for us,’ Harry thought as he walked to the middle of the room and started his warm up stretches. Looking around, Harry was starting to think it wasn’t just the Charms professor trying to guide them either. Harry saw a few plants set out about the room and remembered that Tatewaki and Justin mentioned how the Hufflepuff dorms were filled with plants. A glance in the corner showed that half of the old dueling dummies looked like they had been repaired and were ready for use while the rest were missing. In their place were a couple of training dummies like the kind found in his uncle’s dojo or the Tendo dojo. Unless Flitwick had taken the time to study what sort of equipment Harry might use for training, Minerva had to be the one behind that.

As Harry fell into his katas he picked out more and more things that he thought one of the other head of houses might have put up in the room.

‘Hmm, maybe we should extend an invitation to some Ravenclaws to join us, even the houses out,’ Harry mused. If nothing else, it would show how grateful he and his friends where that Flitwick went through all this trouble for them by inviting his students. Plus Harry wanted to try expanding his network into the Ravenclaw house, the only Hogwarts house in the school he didn’t know anybody in.

Sometime later Harry finally wound down, finishing with some cool off stretches to top off his morning workout. He had extended his senses all around him during practice trying to pick out what may have been added to the room by what professor. It seemed to Harry that the professors, or the house heads at least, were pushing for him and his friends to continue to work together.

‘Maybe they are,’ Harry thought to himself surprised to find a towel and a goblet of water waiting for him on the corner of the study table. He guessed that a House Elf had left it there because he didn’t remember the items being there before and he vaguely remembered hearing a popping noise earlier. Grabbing the goblet Harry slowly gulped down the water, careful not to spill any on himself. ‘After all you already know that the houses didn’t get along that well from Uncle Moony’s stories that’s why you’re trying so hard to stay friends with everyone regardless of the whole house thing.’ He had seen in the last week how much the students in each house tended to stick with their housemates. Slytherins were the most famous for this, hardly speaking to anyone outside of their house. Those who did were like Malfoy, going out of their way to insult someone, mostly a Gryffindor. Ravenclaws mostly kept to themselves as well, though whether that was intentional or not Harry didn’t know. Gryffindors were a little bit friendlier to the other houses except for Slytherins, anyone who tried to be friends with the ‘slimy snakes’ were given a lot of flack. He and Hermione ignored the older students and encouraged Ron and Neville to do the same when the older years tried to warn them away from Kodachi and the others. Except for Ron’s twin brothers, George and Fred encouraged them thinking it was all a great big joke on the world.

The older students were backing off a bit, they were getting use to Kodachi eating with them at meals already and now Tracy and Daphne were starting to eat with them too. Every now and then Harry still heard a snide comment but for now he and his friends were being left alone.

Hufflepuffs on the other hand were the friendliest out of all four houses. They didn’t bat an eye when the Gryffindor and Slytherin first years joined them for meals, always greeted them happily. Harry had observed that most of the Hufflepuffs were friendly to just about anyone barring a few bad eggs. It may have been that attitude they took toward life that made the other houses treat them like a bunch of duffers but Harry thought they should take notes instead.

‘Well you’ve heard the horror stories from Uncle Moony, maybe the professors are tired of everyone fighting. That’s gotta be annoying after awhile,’ Harry thought as he used the towel to wipe the sweat off his face and out of his hair then draped it over his shoulders and drank the last of the water. Either way he and his friends were benefiting from it, all he wanted was someplace to practice his art and instead he got a professor approved study room. Not too shabby if he said so himself. Chuckling to himself Harry headed out of the dueling hall to go back to his dorm for a shower before breakfast started.

“Mrewl,” Harry stopped and looked over his shoulder, standing in the mouth of another hallway was the old caretaker's cat Mrs. Norris. She was giving him a suspicious look as if asking him if he was getting into trouble.

“Saaa, I have permission to be here,” Harry said not feeling the least bit silly for talking to a cat. Mrs. Norris padded closer to Harry sniffing at his leg then gave him a confused look. He smelt like the kitten she found, he sounded like the kitten but he didn’t look anything like a kitten. Sure he was wearing the same cloth around his head that the kitten had around its neck but…

“Meow,” the scruffy looking Maine Coon meowed up at Harry.

“Don’t worry Norris-baba,” Harry said. “I’m heading back to my dorm now.” He waved his hand and started down the hallway again with Mrs. Norris on his heels. As he turned the corner the only warning he got was the gleeful cackle of Peeves before something wet and cold crashed down on top of Harry.

‘Damn,’ Was his only thought as he changed into his cursed form. Mrs. Norris yowled and hissed angrily as she was drenched as well, yellow eyes glaring up at the poltergeist as Peeves laughed and flew through the nearest wall never noticing his victim had disappeared under the bucket full of water he had dumped.

Mrs. Norris shook herself vigorously to get the water out of her fur, it was going to take her hours to clean herself thanks to that blasted spirit, and then looked over at the strange human boy she had been following. Instead of a wet boy there was a pile of soaked clothing on the floor. Clothing that was wiggling as something attempted to climb out.

“Kami no imaimashi sōrei!” Harry cursed once he had freed himself from his gi top. Mrs. Norris mouth dropped open a tiny bit as the boy turned out to be the two tailed kitten that she claimed. Of course, she had forgotten that some humans could shape shift like that older human female. Harry ignored Mrs. Norris for the moment as he wiggled the rest of the way out of his clothing then shook the water out of his fur. His black fur puffed out around him making Harry look a bit like a puff ball for a moment. “If I get my hands on that sōrei….”

“Mrewl,” Harry turned around quickly, he had forgotten that Mrs. Norris was there. He gulped slightly as the cat loomed over him, he could defend himself if need be but he honestly didn’t want to go around harming others pets. Mrs. Norris’s paw snaked out wrapping around Harry’s neck and dragging him close, jaws opening wide as they neared Harry head and…. he groaned as he felt the cat’s rough tongue start to clean his fur.

“We’ve got to stop meeting like this,” Harry said as he wiggled out of Mrs. Norris grip. He sighed as he looked at his clothing trying to figure out what to do. He could race back to the Gryffindor tower so he could change back but there ran the risk of not only his housemates being up and seeing him run into the backroom like this but also he didn’t want to leave his stuff lying in the hallways. If it had just been his gi it wouldn’t be so bad but his wands, which he never went anywhere without, where in there as well and he didn’t want someone finding his stuff and making off with his wands. “I don’t suppose you can carry a wand in your mouth can you?”

“Hiisss,” Mrs. Norris hissed at her strange kitten at the suggestion.

“Yeah didn’t think so,” Harry said. He could shift into his saber tooth form but Harry wanted to keep his curse a secret for as long as possible and it was kinda hard to miss a giant two tailed cat. Harry hummed to himself as he tried to think of what to do. “Hmm, I wonder… can I speak to a House Elf please?” Harry called out loud. He knew it worked with his Aunt Nabiki’s House Elf Dobby after all.

“Yes what cans… Whos be calling for Gremlin?” A young House Elf asked confused as he looked around for who called him. He was a smaller House Elf with the usually large floppy ears and large round eyes the shade of chocolate. The House Elf that called himself Gremlin was wearing a black pillow case with the Hogwarts crest in the corner.

“Me,” Harry said waving a paw.

“EPP!” Gremlin covered his mouth with both hands, brown eyes wide as he stared down at Harry. “Hows… hows can Gremlins helps Mr. Kitty-cat?”

“Can I get some hot water… and maybe a private place where no one can see me?” Harry asked.

“Gremlin be doing that,” Gremlin said as he snapped his fingers, moving Harry and Mrs. Norris to a nearby empty classroom.

“Err Gremlin… I’m gonna need my stuff too,” Harry said once they reappeared.

“Gremlin be sorry Mr. Kitty-cat,” Gremlin said as he snapped his fingers again. Harry’s gi and his boxers appeared neatly folded on the desk with his wands, still in their holsters, and his shoes on top. Mrs. Norris meowed in annoyance, she hated being moved around by House Elf magic. Gremlin popped out of the room then came back a moment later with a kettle of water. “What Mr. Kitty-cat needs with hot water?”

“Can you just pour it over me?” Harry asked as he jumped off the desk and moved to the middle of the floor. The young House Elf looked confused but poured the water over Harry anyway, giving a small gasp in surprise as Harry instantly changed back into a human boy. “Thanks!” Harry said as he grabbed his clothing and quickly got redressed, strapping the holsters back onto his arms.

“Yous… yous being Harry Potter!” Gremlin said in surprise, his hands pressing up to his mouth again.

“Technically yeah but I go by Harry Hibiki,” Harry said as he straightened his bandanna. “Thanks for the help.”

“Ohhhh, the great Harry Potter bes thanking Gremlin,” Gremlin said to himself softly in awe. “Cans Gremlin be asking Harry Potter question?”

“Errr sure, but can you please call me Hibiki, not Potter?” Harry asked as he leaned back against the teacher’s desk, scratching Mrs. Norris behind the ears.

“Harry Pot…. Hibikis be saying please to Gremlin,” Gremlin gushed to himself. Harry chuckled and rolled his eyes slightly, he had to go through this before with Dobby. The House Elves were honest in their awe of Harry, Dobby being an extreme example. “Hows Harry Hibikis turns from kitty-cat to student? Whys be needing hot water? McGonagall nots be needing hot water.”

“I’m not an Animagus like Mimi,” Harry said with a sigh. He supposed he owed the little guy an explanation after helping him. “I’m under a curse.”

“Curse?” Gremlin repeated with wide eyes.

“Yeah, I got it when I was 6. Me and my parents ended up near this training grounds in China that has hundreds of cursed pools in it. Whoever falls in a pool changes into what drowned there when splashed with cold water. I got knocked into the spring of the drowned Nekomata so now I turn into a Nekomata when I get hit by cold water,” Harry explained. “Hot water turns me back into my real form.”

“Ohhhh, horrible horrible curse,” Gremlin bemoaned. Harry shrugged his shoulders slightly.

“It could have been worse, my cursed form is actually pretty cool but it’s a bit of a pain cause I can’t control when I get hit with water most of the time,” the young wizard said. “I’m use to it, it’s just the whole water thing.”

“Ohhh,” Gremlin looked up at Harry with shining chocolate toned eyes. “Gremlin bes helping Harry Hibiki! Harry Hibiki calls on Gremlin when needed help!”

“Are you sure, I don’t want to drag you from your work,” Harry said.

“Gremlin sure,” Gremlin said with a nod.

“Well thanks for the offer then,” Harry said with a smile. “I should go, I need a shower and to get ready for classes. See you around!” Harry saluted Gremlin with two fingers then left the classroom with Mrs. Norris on his heels. Gremlin squealed to himself in excitement then popped back to the kitchens.

At the moving staircases Harry headed up toward the Lion’s den while Mrs. Norris ran back to her human pet Filch.

****

Ukyo absently swayed her hips and sang along with the song playing on the radio. She was busy making breakfast for her family, while Konatsu was down stairs getting the restaurant prepped for the morning rush. Ryoga she knew was still out cold in their bed, the big goof had went all night and day trying to get back to her and the kids after getting separated when returning home from their little ‘visit’ with Harry’s headmaster. Her grip tightened on her spatula briefly, if that old coot knew what was good for him he would listen to their warnings about leaving Harry alone.

“MAA Mamamamamama!” Yoshi chanted as he bounced in his high chair.

“Almost ready sugar,” Ukyo said over her shoulder with a smile. Her two youngest children were waiting on her at the table for breakfast. Yoshi smiled up at her, his little baby fang peeking over his lip, Yoshi had Ryoga’s goofy smile down pat she thought to herself. Keiko on the other hand had her stubbornness as she grunted softly to herself, leaning forward as her little fingers reached for the bottle of milk sitting on the table. “Just hold on there a moment sug, Mama will be getting you your bottle in a moment.”

“Uh!” Keiko grunted back, she wanted her bottle /now/.

“Ah, baba fly!” Yoshi called as he watched with wide eyes, giggling loudly. Ukyo turned in time to see the bottle fly from the middle of the table smack into Keiko’s hand who had a satisfied look on her face as she stuck the nipple in her mouth and gave her mother a look that said ‘see? I had it under control’. “Again! Again!”

“Again what?” Ryoga asked sleepily from the doorway, Shirokuro and Oreo on either side of his legs to keep him from getting lost from between the bedroom to the kitchen.

“Well it seems our little princess just made a bottle fly across the room,” Ukyo said as she flipped a pancake in the skillet, acting as if the fact that Keiko using magic wasn’t an unusual sight. In truth she was a bit rattled, as far as either of them knew Yoshi and Keiko were completely un-magical unlike their older brother. But seeing as how strange things were the norm around here, after all both she and her husband turned into the opposite gender when splashed with cold water, it was easy to brush these sorts of things off.

“Wha?” Ryoga blinked at Ukyo for a moment while his sleep-addled brain tried to catch up. Ukyo glanced his way as she turned off the stove and set the breakfast out on the table. She hummed happily to herself, Ryoga was wearing nothing but a pair of boxers and a t-shirt, his shoulder length hair tussled sexily from sleep. “You mean like with magic?”

“Yep,” Ukyo popped the ‘p’ as she sat down.

“Huh…” Ryoga sat down across from her. Having raised Harry on his own since the babe was 1, flying objects weren’t all that unusual. But he hadn’t thought it would happen with either of his younger children. “So a witch huh?”

“Should we be worried that this doesn’t surprise us any more than it does?” Ukyo asked as she served them the pancakes, making sure Yoshi’s were all cut up in easy to chew bites.

“Maybe but… this is downright tame compared to everything else that’s happened in our lives,” Ryoga said. “I do wonder where she got it though, neither of us are magical outside of having our curses and I know none of my family members are magical.”

“Guess we’ll have to ask one of our experts,” Ukyo said. Ryoga knew that meant either Cologne or Remus.

*****

Millicent Bulstrode sat in a dark corner of the Slytherin Dungeons and observed her fellow housemates as she absently petted her pet black cat Gypsy. As a half blood Millicent wasn’t looked very highly upon by her fellow Slytherins. Oh being a half blood was a might better than being a muggleborn, and she was lucky that her mother was a muggleborn instead of a muggle, but in a house that supposedly boosted that only pureblood students were considered worthy that didn’t amount to much. Millicent knew that was a crock of shit, their own head of house was a half blood and anyone with brains could see the half bloods tended to act smarter than most of the purebloods who were heavily inbred.

Millicent’s father had been a Slytherin as well and had known his daughter would follow in his footsteps. He had prepared her by warning her how house politics worked; you were either a leader, follower or a loner. She wasn’t the leader type, and really most of her housemates wouldn’t follow a half blood anyway unless they proved themselves worthy to follow and she didn’t really stand out in any of the classes. She did well in all her classes but she was average, not standing out in any of the subjects. But she didn’t want to be one of those loner types either so that left ‘follower’. But the question was, who did she give her alliance too?

Before she had started school that question was easy, everyone knew Draco Malfoy was starting that year and the blond was a shoe-in for being the leader of their year. And he would have been too if it hadn’t been for Kodachi Kuno.

Kuno stood up to Malfoy and didn’t take any shit from the young wizard. The elegant girl acted as if Malfoy were an annoying insect under her shoe and more than once Malfoy had been tied up in the girl’s gymnastic ribbon when he got too annoying. The girl was quick minded and showed that she didn’t let anyone get in her way. She was a bit snobby, that came from being rich and Millicent knew Kuno came from a wealthy family as she had heard the other girl describe the large mansion and the grounds it sat on that belonged to her family back in Japan. And servants of course, but not house elves no. The Kuno’s had real live ninjas serving them.

But at the same time Kuno didn’t act like a typical pureblood, she was friends with Tracy Davis who was a half blood like her and had friends outside of their house that were half bloods and even muggleborns. And of course she was friends with Harry Potter, the Boy-who-lived and preferred to be called Harry Hibiki. Kuno and her brother had already known the famous boy before they even came to Hogwarts. Already the girl had connections and she was only 11 years old! She knew several of the older years admired Kuno for that.

In the end it really came down to who Millicent could handle being around more. Kodachi Kuno, who regularly hung out with the cold to everyone but her friends Daphne Greengrass and the mad Tracy Davis or spend time around Pansy Parkinson. Millicent wrinkled her nose slightly at the thought of Parkinson. If she wanted to get close to Malfoy, Parkinson would be the way to go as the pug-faced girl was already a part of Malfoy’s posse but Parkinson treated Millicent like the larger girl was dim witted. She would end up being placed on the same page as those two wanna-be trolls Crabbe and Goyle.

A dark shadow passed over the window behind Millicent and she turned to look out it. It was that crocodile again, it started showing up a few days ago and Millicent couldn’t believe how big the thing was. Or how it was even there as she thought crocodiles were salt water reptiles. Of course the Giant Squid shouldn’t be able to be there either since squids were found in the ocean yet there was one living in the lake and regularly swam past the windows that looked into the Slytherin house.

“I can’t believe you really brought that thing to school,” Daphne Greengrass’s voice said to the right of Millicent. She blinked and looked over to her right where Greengrass, Davis and Kuno were looking out the window at the crocodile.

“Are you kidding? Mr. Green Turtle is so cool!” Tracy said.

“I could hardly leave my baby behind while I came to school so far away from home now could I?” Kodachi said as she pressed her hand against the glass that was enchanted to withstand the water pressure from the lake. Millicent watched amazed as the crocodile strangely named Mr. Green Turtle swam up to the glass and press the end of his snout against the window where Kodachi’s hand was. “After all, who would take care of him?”

“Don’t you have a ninja servant or something that does that?” Daphne asked.

“Sasuke does feed him but he never gives my baby attention beyond that,” Kodachi said, cooing at her giant pet through the window. Millicent glanced out at the rest of the room, no one seemed to notice the three girls interacting with the giant crocodile by the windows. After a few days the reptile had become old news and everyone barely paid any attention to the creature now. She turned her attention to Kodachi and her two friends, Kuno was a bit mad she decided maybe even madder than Davis, but the Japanese youth was still 10 times better than Pansy. Besides who’s side was it better to be on? A prissy boy who rode on his father’s coattails or a mad girl who had a giant crocodile for a pet, Millicent would put her money on the girl with the crocodile.

*****

Harry grumbled to himself as he left the DADA classroom with his friends, his bandanna pushed up slightly as he absently rubbed the scar on his forehead.

“Are you alright Harry?” Hermione asked as she noticed the motion.

“Just a headache, it’s going away now,” Harry assured her. It seemed to be a pattern so far, every class he had so far in DADA with Quirrell ended up with Harry getting a headache. To be frank it made Harry’s ‘spider senses’ go off, Defense was the only class he was getting these headaches in so far, not that he had too many classes since it was still early in the school year but not even potions where he was surrounded by fumes of brewing potions had caused him to have a headache. And it always faded away the further away he got from the classroom, the further away he got from Quirrell.

And Harry still thought there was something off about that man.

“Strange that you only seem to get these headaches in DADA,” Hermione mused also picking up on the strange pattern.

“Maybe it’s all that garlic Quirrell’s got in there,” Ron said. “Too much of that stink would give anyone a headache.”

“Wh-where did you get that scar?” Neville asked having noticed the lightning bolt shaped scar before Harry pulled the green bandanna he always wore back down over his forehead. So far none of the professors had requested that Harry remove it during classes. Since the revelation that he and Neville were sort of god-brothers, the slightly older boy wasn’t as shy at least not toward Harry. They were working on Neville’s confidence but it was a bit of an uphill struggle as they worked against years of being told that he was a near squib and that he wasn’t as good as his father.

“Scar?” Ron repeated turning back to look at Harry. “What scar?”

“I have an old scar on my forehead,” Harry said as he lifted the bandanna again to show the redhead the scar. Ron whistled softly as he looked.

“Wow mate where did you get that? Some sorta fight?” He asked.

“Are you sure that’s old Harry, it looks awfully fresh,” Hermione commented.

“Dad was told that was where whatever spell Voldemort used stuck me, it’s a cursed scar,” Harry said as he pulled the bandanna down again. He could see the gleam in Hermione’s eyes and knew she was going to look up cursed scars as soon as possible.

“That’s from the night you defeated You-Know-Who!?” Ron exclaimed. Around them in the hallway several heads turned at the shout, looking at the four first years curiously.

“Will you keep it down?” Harry hissed then grabbed Ron by the arm to drag the other boy to a much less crowded hallway, Neville and Hermione quickly following them. Ron made a squawking noise as he was dragged off by the much stronger boy, he forgot how strong his friend was sometimes. Once the four pre-teens were in a quieter hallway, Harry let Ron go and turned to face his friends.

“Bloody hell, what did you do that for?” Ron asked as he rubbed his arm where Harry at gripped him at.

“I already got people talking about me because of that stupid ‘boy-who-lived’ thing, what do you think they would do if they learned I had a cursed scar from that night?” Harry said in a soft tone.

“Oh…” Ron rubbed the back of his neck and blushed heavily. “I guess I didn’t think…” Harry sighed and patted Ron on the shoulder, forgiving the older boy for the outburst. Hermione, seeing her chance, pounced on Harry and started to ask him questions about what he knew of cursed scars in general. As the four walked away toward their next class, a young man in a nearby portrait watched them go then quickly and quietly left his frame.

****

“And did you get a look at the scar?” Albus questioned the portrait.

“No sir, and the other hallway was too crowded for anyone to get a look there either,” the painted man said. Albus hummed to himself and tapped his long fingers against each other, the portraits in the school were one of the many ways he always seemed to know what was going on. He wasn’t the only one who used them either, the other heads of houses used the school paintings to their advantage, very few people stopped to think about the painting in the background when they spoke. The painting the Headmaster was speaking to now had just informed him about the cursed scar Harry carried on his brow that the boy believed came from that night Voldemort attempted to kill him.

There was still very little known about what happened that Halloween night. Albus had gone to the house and conducted a series of scans, he knew Voldemort had cast the killing curse twice inside the nursery. One of the spells had killed Lily Potter while the other had been cast at Harry. Lily’s magical signature had also been in the room around Harry’s crib. Albus was sure Lily had found the spell in a book on blood wards he had lent her when she mentioned she wanted to protect her sister Petunia and was all but confidant that the spell could be used to tie into those same blood wards. But Albus had never known for sure as he never got the chance to examine Harry after that night as the toddler had been taken away. By who, Albus hadn’t known at the time though he feared it had been one of Tom’s followers who had taken the boy. Now he knew it was Ryoga Hibiki who had found, taken and adopted Harry as his own.

“Very well, continue to keep your ears open will you Sebastian?” Albus asked the young man in the painting. Sebastian bowed briefly then left the frame to return to his own. Fawkes fluttered over from her perch to sit on the arm of Albus’s chair instead, trilling softly. “Ah Fawkes, my lovely girl, I am a bit worried to hear the boy has a cursed scar,” the wizard said softly as he gently scratched the phoenix’s chest feathers, getting an itch there she couldn’t quite reach herself.

Fawkes trilled a soft song, trying to ease the fears of her bonded. She thought Albus was going the wrong way with the boy, it was obvious he was well protected with the two humans that had come almost a week ago. She gave a slight shiver as she remembered the power, the pure chi the man had given off. She hadn’t felt a power like that in a long long time, it had startled her and sent her flying to get away. By the time she got her wits back, the Hibikis had gone and Albus was sitting at his ruined desk looking at it amused. Even now you could see where Ukyo’s battle spatula had carved into the desk, making the surface look like it had a battle scar on its otherwise smooth surface.

“Still…. Scars can be useful, I have one that looks like the London underground on the back of my knee,” Albus said as he plucked a couple of lemon drops out of the dish on his desk. He offered one to Fawkes, who plucked it out of his hand with her long beak to swallow whole, then popped the other into his own mouth. Sucking on it gently, he thought back to the night of the opening feast. He remembered seeing Harry rub at his forehead that night, under that green bandana he always wore. He also saw the very faint flinch poor Professor Quirrell had given at the same time.

Albus sighed softly as he thought of Quirrell, he knew the man had been in contact with Voldemort’s shade and even served the weakened Dark Lord but he wasn’t sure just yet how strong that ran. It was even possible that Voldemort was here at the school, Albus had a theory that Quirrell may be possessed by the dark lord’s spirit. It was a huge gamble to allow the man and the spirit that he possibly carried into the school, Albus was banking on the idea that Voldemort wouldn’t want it to be known he was back already until he had a body of his own. So the dark lord was keeping a low profile for now. Not to say he wasn’t being watched because he was. Albus himself of course was watching the man without seeming to be and he had the paintings keeping an eye on the DADA teacher. Severus himself was no doubt already on high alert and keeping his dark eyes on the man. And Albus wouldn’t be surprised if Filius had also picked up on something as well, the man wasn’t a dueling champion for nothing after all.

So between the three of them, and Minerva who was no slouch herself, Albus thought they had a pretty good chance of keeping the students safe if the worst happen. But Albus thought his plan on capturing Voldemort would work. The traps were only mildly hard, so to draw Tom into a false sense of security and Albus was thinking of using that old mirror of Erised that was stored in one of the old classrooms. He just had to create the perfect spell that would keep somebody who wanted to use the stone from getting it yet allow somebody who wanted it but didn’t want to use it to get the stone. In the time it would take Voldemort and Quirrell to figure out the mirror, it should ensnare the both of them in its powers.

“And then we should be able to figure out just what it is you did Tom,” Albus said to himself, absently petting Fawkes who cooed under his touch.

******

The rest of the school week passed very quickly and soon it was the next Saturday. Severus left the school a little before noon to go to his meeting with Lupin at the Cat Café.

‘Cat Café,’ /Severus thought to himself with a wrinkle of his nose. He’d heard a little about it, just enough to know that it was filled with pretty girls from other men in Hogsmeade when he had to come down to the hamlet for supplies he didn’t want to go to Diagon Alley for. It sounded a bit like a brothel and he wondered for a moment if that was where he was heading? /‘It would be like Lupin to make me meet him in a brothel.’ Severus knew this wasn’t completely true, that would be more along the lines of what Potter or Black would pull, still the thought passed his mind.

Following the instructions of a nearby asked person, Severus walked to the edge of the village near the Shrieking Shack. There in front of him was a two story building decorated with Chinese art. In front were a young woman and young man welcoming people inside. He strode past them, his black robes billowing around him like wings. Inside it was softly lit with lanterns and all around were tables filled with customers. Severus blinked his dark colored eyes, whatever he was expecting it wasn’t this.

‘It’s a ramen shop,’ He realized as he watched young women and a couple of young men taking bowls full of ramen to the tables. The young potions professor was even surprised to see a woman that was easily Hagrid’s size among the crowd.

“Nihao!” A woman about his age greeted with a smile. She was a head shorter than him with purple hair pulled up in two round buns on top of her head and the rest left hanging down her back. She also had a lock of hair on either side of her face tied off with a little ribbon that had tiny bells attached to them that jingled when she moved. “Welcome to the Cat Café, I am Shampoo and will be your server for the evening. Would you like a seat?”

“No, I am here to meet someone,” Severus declined though he would admit only to himself that the ramen did smell good. “Remus Lupin.”

“Ohhh,” Shampoo said then smiled. “You would be Professor Snape yes? Come this way, your party is waiting.” She waved for the dark man to follow her. Shampoo had come a couple of hours before with Remus, Kasumi, their twins and her own three children. Currently she was covering for her Great Grandmother while Cologne took time to visit with Spice, Makoto and Taji. Shampoo mused that this Snape man was just like Remus described, a bit greasy haired and very bat like.

The Amazon warrior lead Snape to a backroom where Remus waited, bowing slightly.

“I prepare too good ramen, on the house,” Shampoo said. Severus only nodded and swept into the room where Remus waited.

The first thing that Severus noticed about Remus was that his old school mate looked very healthy. A lot healthier than he ever thought a man like Remus, who was a werewolf, would be. His skin was a healthy color, the scars on his face were faded with no new scars to show and his tawny brown hair had very little gray within it. Another big surprise was the little girl sitting in Remus’s lap who he was trying to teach how to hold and use a fork.

“Merlin, you’ve reproduced,” Severus said with a groan. Remus looked up and chuckled at the dismayed look on the other’s face.

“Hi!” Miyu said cheerfully up at the big nosed man.

“I only pray she’s more like her mother than she is like you,” Severus said as he sat down in one of the chairs.

“If you mean whether or not she’s a werewolf then yes, she’s like her mother who’s a human,” Remus said. “They both are.”

“Both?” Severus asked then felt something tug on his shoelaces. He leaned back and looked under the table where a small boy who looked like the girl in Lupin’s lap was attempting to untie his shoes. “You’ve produced twins,” He remarked dryly. Remus chuckled again and looked under the table.

“Tsuki come here,” He said. Tsuki abandoned trying to undo Snape’s shoes and crawled over to his father, climbing into his lap alongside his sister. “This is Tsuki and this is Miyu.”

“I did not come here to discuss your offspring,” Snape said with a sneer.

“Of course,” Remus said lightly. “You’re here about Tatewaki and Kodachi.”

“Yes… who in their right mind would give someone like you a child to look over,” Snape asked. “Unless they are…” He left the question hang in the air. He hadn’t observed anything that would suggest Kodachi was a werewolf but she could be very good at hiding it.

“No, neither of them are werewolves,” Remus quickly assured him.

“Then why-“ Severus started to ask again but was interrupted as the door opened. Inside came a woman with brown hair tied back in a white ribbon, the tail hanging over her shoulder, and wearing a simple blue dress. In her hands she carried a tray full of bowls of ramen and a pitcher of water.

“Mama!” The twins called as they climbed off of their father’s lap and ran around the table to their mother.

Kasumi smiled and gently placed the tray down on the table then bowed politely to Severus.

“Shampoo has assured me that your meal is on the house Snape-san,” She said. Snape blinked up at the woman.

“You’re the woman Lupin married?” He blurted. Severus hadn’t known what to expect when he read that Lupin had married or who would be stupid enough to marry a werewolf. He envisioned somebody who wasn’t too bright perhaps but he could see the glint of intelligence in the woman’s brown eyes.

“Careful there Snape,” Remus growled softly, taking Snape’s words as an insult toward his mate.

“I’m sure he meant nothing by it,” Kasumi said with a smile as she swept up her two young children and neatly placed each of them in a pair of high chairs that Snape hadn’t noticed before. “I’m sure he was just a bit surprised were you not Snape-san?” She asked as she turned to face the dark man, her hands clasped in front of her.

“Err… yes,” Snape said taken aback at how… polite this woman was. Kasumi just smiled as she placed a bowl of ramen in front of both Snape and her husband then set the two smaller bowls in front of her children, sitting beside them to help them eat.

“You were discussing Tachi and Dachi correct?” Kasumi asked in a pleasant tone. “I do hope Kodachi hasn’t caused you any trouble, I know she can be a bit of a handful sometimes.”

“No, Miss Kuno is doing quite well,” Severus found himself calmly answering. “She is doing well in her classes and for the most part gets along with her classmates.”

“Oh that’s wonderful, I was worried about her making friends,” Kasumi said happily. “What about Tatewaki?”

“I… am not Mr. Kuno’s head of house and he isn’t a very adapt potion brewer,” Severus said. “But what I’ve seen of him he gets along very well with another boy in his house.” Across the table Remus snickered softly to himself as Snape easily fell into the spell that was his Kasumi. It seemed nobody could hate Kasumi, she had a way about her that had people instantly reacting polite and kind toward her that he had never seen in anyone else. Even Snape had fallen under her spell. Remus wondered what would have happened if Voldemort had ever met Kasumi, he privately thought she could have had the dark lord having tea and biscuits while chatting about the weather with little effort on her part.

“I am glad to hear the children are doing well,” Kasumi said in a content happy voice.

“Mrs. Lupin if I may ask a question?” Severus asked.

“What is a girl like me doing with a werewolf?” Kasumi guessed. She glanced at Snape and gave him a smile at his near open-mouth shock. “I love Remus for who he is, not what he is. He’s a kind intelligent man who loves me and adores our children. Yes he turns into a wolf once a month but that doesn’t change who he is.”

“Werewolves are quite dangerous Mrs. Lupin, are you not afraid he will accidently bite one of your children?” Severus continued to ask. Remus glared at Snape for asking the questions as if he would harm his own family but knew why the other man asked. Werewolves were not well liked in the UK after all, seen by most as blood-thirsty monsters. Unlike werewolf clans in the United States and Japan, most lycans did not have any control over themselves during the full moon. Remus had been like that himself up until he met the local pack near the Nerima ward. They had helped him merge with the beast inside him and that allowed him to keep his mind during his time of the month.

Snape also had a personal vendetta against werewolves after almost being attacked by Remus himself during their time at Hogwarts thanks to the trick Black pulled. It had been pure luck that Snape had been saved by James, another thing Snape had hated his best friend for as it resulted in a life dept.

Kasumi just gave Snape another one of her calm sweet smiles as she answered, “Remus is in perfect control of himself. He would never harm one of his cubs. I trust my husband Snape-san.”

“I’m sorry Mrs. Lupin but I feel I must point out werewolves have no control over themselves during the full moon,” Snape countered. Remus cleared his throat, bringing his old school-hood rival’s attention back to him.

“That’s not true it turns out,” Remus explained. “Both American and Japanese packs have discovered it is possible to merge, for lack of a better word, with their werewolf mind through meditation and therapy. And I think some packs here might have somewhat figured it out as well. At least Grayback did, he always seems to be able to stop himself after biting a child.”

“You believe you have control over your beast side,” Snape stated flatly, he had to give Lupin a point, Grayback did always have control over himself years before the Wolfsbane potion was created.

“I know I do otherwise I wouldn’t spend my nights with my family,” Remus said. “I don’t care what you think of me Snape, I would never harm my family. I would rather die first.” Snape stared at Lupin for a moment, he hated the other man with a passion but he could grudgingly admit Lupin cared deeply for his little family.

“I suppose you have a point,” Severus said, a look on his face as if the words pained him. He finally picked up the chopsticks laying by the bowl, breaking them apart and tried his first mouthful of Nekohanten ramen. It was… surprisingly very good he found. He supposed this was another reason why the restaurant was doing so well in the village. “Why did you not tell Dumbledore where Potter’s spawn was?” He asked after a few minutes, this was one of the things that bugged him. He always thought Lupin was Dumbledore’s loyal lapdog and would have told the headmaster where Lily’s son had been as soon as he found the boy. Of course he thought the same of Minerva and she had kept it hidden all these years.

“I wouldn’t allow my cub to go live with Lily’s harpy of a sister,” Remus said, an edge of a growl to his voice. “I could also see how much Ryoga and Ukyo cared for Harry, how happy he is with them. I wasn’t going to deny Harry a family that loves him.”

“And they continued to let you stay around him,” Severus observed.

“Yes and I was quite surprised by that,” Remus said. “Ryoga figured out quickly I was a werewolf but that didn’t matter to them. His wife was quick to offer me a job working in her restaurant alongside her other employee, accommodating me so I could have the days around the full moon off.”

“And life worked out for you,” Severus said, casting a glance over Kasumi and the twins way. Remus saw where the other man was looking and smiled happily at his little family. “Tell me how you came to be the guardians of the Kuno siblings then.”

“That is a bit more difficult to explain,” Remus said with a frown.

“Oh my,” Kasumi said as she turned back to them. “Remus do you think we should tell him? He might need to know.”

“I was thinking the same thing,” Remus said.

“And just what do I need to know?” Severus said with a raised eyebrow.

“It’s a bit difficult to explain and even harder to believe,” Remus said with a shake of his head. “But before we do, I think Tatewaki head of house should be here as well.” Severus frowned but stood to send a message to Professor Sprout to join them.

****

“I do wonder what Severus wants me for,” Pomona said to Hagrid as she followed him through Hogsmeade. She had been in Greenhouse number 8, which houses some of the most dangerous plants at Hogwarts, tending to her babies as she readied them for her seventh year NEWTS class when a House Elf had popped in and passed on a message from Severus to meet him at a place called the Cat Café. Seeing as how she rarely ventured into Hogsmeade she had to go to Hagrid, who regularly visited, to get directions. The half giant’s face had lit up and offered to escort her there, saying something about cinnamon. She didn’t know why Hagrid needed to go to Hogsmeade just to get a bit of cinnamon, she had a little growing in her personal greenhouse he could have used.

“’m sure it ain’t nutin’ serious profess’r,” Hagrid said as he led the way toward the café. He was always looking forward to seeing Cinnamon, he and the half giant woman could talk for hours and she could hold her drink unlike anyone he ever met!

“Yes I suppose you’re right,” Sprout said as they rounded the bend. “Oh my… that’s the restaurant Severus wants to meet me at?” she said in surprise.

“It’s alrigh’ profess’r,” Hagrid said as he walked in, greeting the young man and woman at the door happily.

“Hello Hagrid,” they both said at the same time, the girl giggling. Sprout followed him and found the inside to be quite calming and pleasant.

“Cinnamon!” She looked up as Hagrid called to someone happily.

“Hagrid,” A woman across the room answered. Pomona looked and was quite surprised to see a giant woman waving happily to her co-worker. “Wait a few minutes and I’ll be on break.”

“Oh, Cinnamon is a young woman,” Pomona said softly.

“Yep, she a pea’h,” Hagrid said, a large smile on his face behind his bushy beard. Pomona smiled and chuckled to herself, it seemed Hagrid was quite taken with this woman. It was quite cute.

“Nihao,” A purple haired woman greeted as she appeared. “Are you Pomona Sprout?”

“Yes, a colleague of mine asked me to meet him here,” Sprout said.

“Come this way, Snape waiting in back room for you,” Shampoo said as she waved her hand for the professor to follow. She led the other woman through the restaurant to the room where Remus and the others were waiting. “In here.”

“Thank you dear,” Pomona said as she pushed through the door. “Severus, what is going on? Your message from the House Elf sounded like it is important.”

“Ask him,” Severus said as he pointed at Remus.

“Oh! As I live and breathe,” Pomona said as she noticed the werewolf. “Remus Lupin, well this is a surprise. I’m shocked you two aren’t at each other throats.”

“Things a little more important than us fighting each other. I would like you to meet my wife Kasumi,” Remus said as he stood up and held his hand out to his spouse.

“Hello, I’m pleased to meet you,” Kasumi said as she bowed politely.

“I’m pleased to meet you as well,” Sprout said with a mothering smile. “And who are these two little angels?”

“I wouldn’t quite call them angels,” Remus said with humor. “These are our children, Tsuki and Miyu.”

“Well, what’s this all about then?” The down to Earth woman asked as she sat the table.

“We wish to speak about Tatewaki and Kodachi,” Remus said.

“Tatewaki… yes one of my new badger cubs,” Sprout said confused. “Why?”

“I should explain a bit, Kasumi and I are their legal guardians. Their mother died when they were very young and their father was… far from unsuitable to take care of them,” Remus’s voice had a bit of a growl to it and his lip curled as he thought of the elder Kuno. “But that’s not why we asked you to come. This may sound very unbelievable but… what if I were to tell you neither Kodachi or Tatewaki are quite what they appear.”

“Out with it already,” Snape snapped.

“Kodachi and Tatewaki are… not 11 and almost 12. They are closer to our age Snape,” Remus said. Severus snorted and glared at his school hood bully.

“Is this another one of your pranks Lupin?”

“It’s true,” Kasumi said. “Tatewaki went to school with my younger sisters, he and Nabiki were in many of the same classes. Kodachi had gone to an all girls school but she did have a rivalry with my youngest sister Akane over my brother-in-law Ranma, who was engaged to Akane at the time.”

“You expect us to sit here and believe that Mr. and Miss Kuno are in their late 20’s,” Severus asked in disbelief.

“I don’t understand, how could they be in their 20’s when they look like children?” Pomona asked confused. “No ageing or deaging potion works for that long and someone would have noticed if either of them were taking one.”

“As I said, it’s difficult to believe. Physically and mentally Kodachi and Tatewaki are the age they appear to be. And they will continue to grow as a normal child would. But at one time they were the age they really are, lived their life once already reaching adulthood. But a few years ago, around the time Harry would have been five I believe, Kodachi found a special type of mushroom on the grounds of her family home. She used it in the dinner she made for her and her brother, the mushroom turned them both into younger versions of themselves,” Remus explained. Snape snorted in disbelief again but Sprout gasped softly.

“You don’t mean… Ageing Mushrooms?” She asked in a whisper. “Those are supposed to be a myth; no one has ever found any.”

“Ageing Mushrooms?” Snape asked with a raised eyebrow.

“Oh yes, supposedly if you eat one, you would turn into the age that equaled the height of the mushroom,” The other professor said with a nod. “But as I said, they are nothing but a myth!”

“They are no myth,” a voice said from the doorway. Everyone turned to see Cologne standing in the doorway. “The mushrooms are real and work just as you say.”

“Who are you?” Snape asked with a frown. There was something very familiar about the short old woman but he couldn’t put his finger on what it was.

“I am Kon Lon of the Joketsuzoku, its matriarch and one of its elders,” Cologne said as she used her staff to quickly pogo across the room to one of the chairs at the table. Snape’s eyes widened in shock as he suddenly realized who the woman was. Cologne chuckled when she saw his look. “And as sonny here has already guessed, I am also China’s leading potions mistress. I own the Cat Café and if you wish, you may simply refer to me as Cologne, everyone does.” Severus had something damn close to hero worship in his dark eyes, Cologne had invented several important and powerful potions. She also was the leading expert on obscure and ancient potions among the Potions Masters guild. What he wouldn’t give for one hour to pick apart her brain…

“So it really is real, the Ageing Mushrooms?” Sprout asked. She had read about them while she prepared for her mastership in Herbology but all the books said the mushrooms were nothing more than rumor and myth.

“Yes, you have two students at your school that had been the victim of them after all,” Cologne said.

“How did she come across it then?” Snape asked curious. He had never heard of the mushroom himself but if he could find and gather some… who knows what sort of potions it could lead to.

“I can explain that, at least in part,” Kasumi said. “When Harry-chan’s father was 16 he accidently found the forest where they grew and ate one because he was starving. The one he picked turned him into a five year old. Luckily someone was there to explain to him how the mushrooms worked and Ryoga took some and attempted to grow them to 16 inches so he could be back at his real age. My brother-in-law found him after he returned to Nerima, the ward where we live in Japan, and accidently ate one as well. It was quite the mess though both Ranma-kun and Ryoga-kun made the cutest children. Unfortunately, the two of them used to fight a lot and accidently destroyed many of the mushrooms. If it hadn’t been for my sister Akane, she saved two of them and grew them to the proper size, they would have had to grow up again.”

“We believe that the spores from the mushrooms that the Hibiki boy had with him found the closest source of a damp dark place, the grounds of the Kuno estate,” Cologne took over. “The girl years later found the mature mushrooms and used them by accident, resulting in the state they are in now.”

“So how much do they remember, is the mind deaged as well?” Pomona asked.

“No, any memories and abilities the victim had at their real age they still process in the younger age,” Cologne said.

“So we have two students in the school pretending to be children,” Snape said darkly.

“No, Tatewaki and Kodachi’s memories where locked away by a mind healer to the age their body was when we found them,” Remus said with a shake of his head. “You see, when their mother died it was due to the fact her husband had her killed. The Kuno family is an old wizarding family that has ties in both the magical and non-magical worlds. Lady Kuno married a muggle man, one who only wanted her family’s money. He had her killed then made sure neither of his children ever received their letters to any of Japan’s magical schools.”

“They went untrained?” Snape asked. “Their magic unbound?” He knew what would happen to a young witch or wizard who did not learn to control their magic. If it did not kill them it would drive them insane, this was the reason why the children either went to a magical school like Hogwarts or a Ministry of Magic ran school in London, or if they did not go had their magic bound tightly so it wouldn’t hurt them or anyone around them.

“Yes and I’m sure their father knew what would happen to them because of it,” Remus agreed. “He right out confessed he was determined that neither of his children would learn magic. When he discovered Kodachi and Tatewaki around 5 years old once again well you could guess how he took that.”

“Where is the man now?” Snape asked his dark eyes hard. His own drunk of a father made his childhood a living hell but at least he managed to escape to Hogwarts every year thanks to his mother insisting he go.

“In Japan’s version of Azkaban,” Remus said his own amber eyes glowing with a feral glint. “One good thing did come from the incident, the magic in their bodies accepted them both as being young and settled down again. In time their minds started to clear up and when Kodachi was around the physical age of 8, she accidently apparated herself out of the house after her father struck her. Harry found her and that is how we learned of the whole mess.”

“Oh those poor dears,” Pomona said. “You had no way to return them to their proper ages?”

“No aging potion as been invented as of yet that would be permanent,” Cologne said. “And any remaining mushrooms on the Kuno property were destroyed.”

“Couldn’t you have returned to the place they were originally found?” Pomona asked. Cologne shook her head negative.

“No, the Hibiki boy did not know where the forest was, he stumbled across it by accident,” she said. “And was unable to find it again afterward.”

“Then I suggested they take advantage of the situation,” Remus said. “Have a mind healer mend their memories from adulthood and regrow up, this time learning magic. After sometime thinking about it they agreed and now they think and act the age they appear to be now. The Japanese government that deals with magic knows of what happened to them of course and approved of the decision, allowing Kasumi and I to become their legal guardians.”

“Why tell us all of this then?” Severus asked after a few moments as he and Pomona thought over what Remus said.

“The mind healer who bound their memories mostly covered what happened to them as teenagers and adults as well as trying to block the abuse they suffered from their father,” Remus explained. “But memories are… tricky things and there was no way to capture every single memory. Anything they still remember they block from their own mind I think, making themselves forget, but…”

“There is always the possibility that something could happen and a memories could spring forth,” Kasumi finished for him. “We thought it would be best, as their house heads, that you know in case something did happen. At least you know what is going on now.”

“I could have used a special pressure point technique and a potion in the form of a shampoo to block the memories but my Son-in-law proved that with enough pressure it could be broken,” Cologne said. “And too many memories rushing back at once could have damaged their minds further.”

“And there you have it,” Remus said with a small shrug of his shoulders.

“I see,” Severus said back in his seat his fingers pressed together as he thought over the information quickly. This was a most unusual thing that had fallen into their laps and if Cologne hadn’t insisted that it was true Snape would have thought the whole thing to be a prank. “For now I will take your word for it wolf and will keep an eye on Miss Kuno in case something does slip.”

“And I will keep an eye on dear Mr. Kuno,” Sprout agreed.

“Thank you both,” Kasumi said as she stood and bowed to both of them. “We just want them to grow up into happier, healthier people. I remember Kodachi and Tatewaki from before, they were not happy people.”

Not long afterward the two professors returned to Hogwarts, for now keeping the incident to themselves. Minerva they were told by the Lupins knew of what had happen to the Kunos and debated telling Flitwick and the school nurse Madame Pomfrey. Both agreed that for now it would be kept from the Headmaster, no need to have that man sticking his crooked nose in the siblings’ lives after all.

****

“That went a lot better than I thought it would,” Remus mused as he and Kasumi left the Cat Café, each of them holding a twin.

“How did you think it would go?” Kasumi asked.

“A lot more cutting remarks and maybe a curse or two,” Remus admitted. “Snape and I did not get along in school, James and Black did all they could to make his life hell and I did nothing to stop them really, I even helped at times. Of course Snape got in just as many hits so he wasn’t a helpless victim.”

“That’s horrible Remus,” Kasumi scolded her husband.

“It was and I’m ashamed of how we acted at least,” Remus said. “James did grow up in the end, the summer before our last year at Hogwarts forced him to but there would always be a void of mistrust between us. I just hope Snape doesn’t take it out on Kodachi, Tatewaki or Harry.”

“I don’t think he will,” Kasumi said. “I think there is… a well of understanding and maybe even kindness in the man.”

“You tend to see the good in people Kasumi,” Remus said. “And to bring it out in them, that is one of the reasons I love you.”

“Oh hush you,” Kasumi said with a pretty blush. Remus chuckled and leaned over to kiss her cheek, grinning as the twins squealed in laughter at their parents.

“Come on, I want to show off Hogsmeade to you before we have to go back to Japan,” Remus said. He loved the sleepy hamlet, having spent many Hogsmeade weekends here while he was in Hogwarts with his friends. It hurt to think of Black and of Peter, of the pack he lost, but showing a place he had loved to his beloved wife made his heart grow warm as Kasumi oohed and awed over every little thing. Miyu and Tsuki enjoyed it as well, pointing out everything they wanted to see, drawn in by the bright colors.

At one outdoor market stand that were selling brightly painted babbles, while Kasumi looked over the wares hoping to bring home a souvenir from her trip to the magical village, a voice from behind Remus made him freeze up in surprise.

“Remus?” Kasumi turned in confusion and watched her husband stand there for a second or two in frozen shock before slowly turning around. She glanced at the other man, much older with graying tawny brown hair. And his face was so familiar looking though covered in wrinkles and hard lines, it looked just like…

“’Ello Dad,” Remus said as he finally found his voice again.

*****

Author note: And there you have it, a brand new chapter. Sorry it took so long to get out, all the crazy weather we were having for a while cut into my writing time something awful.
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