The first introductions are made into the wizarding world.
Chapter 3: Introductions
"Yes, it's time to go."
Hugging the blanket tightly to my chest, and dragging a third of it behind me, I set forth. We started walking down the road with only Ms. Jones walking in tow behind us. Traveling for nearly twenty minutes in silence was broken by Mr. Weasley suddenly asking, "Xix, how do you know Sirius?"
Not really having an answer that was easily explainable coming from an eleven year old boy, I hugged the blanket tighter and said cryptically, "We met in a dream, after, after IT happened."
The nebulous 'IT' hung in the air as from the expression on his face said that he had reached the conclusion that 'IT' had something to do with the five makeshift graves in the back yard. Shortly, we came to a small village consisting of about ten houses and a small pub. More strange contraptions assaulted the eye and the ear as we made our way down the street. At the third house from the other end of the village we turned to walk up its path. Just before we got to the door, it opened to reveal a kindly looking old woman, meeting my escort's gaze, she let us into her home. A quick explanation of Floo powder and its use had me stepping into the hearth and shouting, "The Burrow!"
The ride through the Floo system proved to be just as dizzying as described, but what wasn't described was how it worked. As the ride proceeded I could feel the magic of the system building up a charge around me. My guess as to the cause of this buildup at the time may have been the extra magic required to overcome my spell resistance. Regardless, the landing on the other end was memorable for all parties involved. I came rocketing out the hearth head first; the blanket in my arms immediately billowed out to form a combination cape, parachute, net, and I collided with a large group of children.
The scene that Mr. Weasley landed in was a scene of chaos. Arms, legs, and the occasional head were all tangled up in a large orange amorphous blob. Sighing and glancing at his wife and son Percy standing in the doorway, he canceled the spell on the blanket, or at least that's what he tried to do. What happened in reality was that the blanket shrank down to the size of a large hand towel and remained in my grasp. Taking stock of my surroundings as the elder Weasleys started untangling the 'human' knot, I noticed that the boy beneath me was really hurt by our collision. Quickly I cast an almost silent cure critical on the boy and he perked back into consciousness as we were finally untangled.
"Well, since everyone is present, this is Xix Steel. He'll be staying with us until it's time to head off to Hogwarts. Xix, this is my wife Molly, my sons Percy, Fred, George, and Ron, my daughter Ginny, who will be in your year, and finally this is Harry Potter," Arthur introduced.
After shaking hands with everyone and apologizing again for the landing, I yawned, "Where am I sleeping?"
Arthur got an odd look on his face before he said, "It may be a little cramped but I think you'll get on famously with Fred and George."
Snickering, "Lead the way Gred and Forge!"
Bunking with the twins proved to be terrifying and exciting all at the same time. We did become fast friends. Our terror was felt by all the occupants of the house. The time that I made the Great Harry Potter wet the bed was as childish as it was funny. Living among humanoids for as long as I had had supplied me with plenty of simple prank ideas. Buckets over doorframes, tripwire triggered pillow assault, jumping out of dark corners screaming, and varied other mundane non-magical pranks rounded out my repartee. I got as good as I gave when Harry, Ron, and Ginny teamed up to throw water balloons at us at opportune moments and in one great melee the twins and I came back to the house soaked to the bone. I also quickly learned to not eat or drink anything that passed though the hands of either twin after an incident with Ron and their candies.
The day after I arrived at the Burrow I traveled with Arthur to Hogwarts, via Hogsmeade, to get enrolled in school. The Headmaster and Deputy Headmistress were away on business, so we met with the Ravenclaw head of House, a Mr. Flitwik. Mr. Flitwik was an excitable little old man that Sirius's stories had little information on. Essentially meeting him for the first time, I sat in the chair proffered to me and began to study him. We sat in silence studying each other before he spoke, "Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, would you kindly wait outside so I can begin this young man's interview."
After doing what was asked of them, Mr. Flitwik used his wand to cast two spells at the door, "Alright young man, I've set a locking and silencing charm on the door, so we can get started." Walking to his desk he pulled a contraption out of a drawer and set it carefully on his desk. "This device here will test your magical aptitude to see if you have what it takes to become a wizard. Since, you did not receive a letter in the usual manner in which these things are done; we will have to see using an old-fashioned method. Put your hands here, and here," he said whilst pointing to two upraised spheres.
Doing as instructed, I nervously did as instructed, placing my hands as indicated. He pulled out a wooden poker from the side of the device and used it to press a button that was between the spheres. Nothing happened at first, and just as I was about to ask a question of him, my hands started to tingle. The feeling started progressing up my arms and quickly after over my entire body. "Is it supposed to make me feel tingly?"
"Yes, that means that it's working. Where does the feeling reside?"
"The feeling is all over me and is starting to get irritating. Can I stop now?"
"That's odd. It's supposed to only tingle on a body part. Maybe something's wrong? ..."
He never did get to finish that line of thought for at that moment all hell started breaking loose. I felt the sickening feeling of spell discharge as I turned invisible. The tingles turned to pain as more of my prepared spells started discharging in random directions all around the room. Magic Missiles shooting out of my ass canceled the invisibility, Scattergloom shrouded the office in magical darkness, and a cure spell relieved some of the pain before a searing light spell shot out my left shoulder and broke something fragile. All through the chaos, Flitwik was shouting, "Remove your hands! Remove your hands!" Trying to remove my hands from the device was fruitless; they were stuck fast to the contraption. Still in Magical Darkness, I took a chance and transformed into my natural form. Raising my claws and the device along with them into the air, I concentrated whilst taking in a breath, and breathed my acid breath at full strength at my claws and the upper walls and ceiling of the room.
My acid apparently dissolved most of the device, so that when I crashed my claws onto the desk, the remaining pieces fell off scattering everywhere. The partially uncontrolled breath also had the affect of burning holes into Mr. Flitwik's Office door, thereby breaking the charms that he had put in place. Mr. Weasley in the outer office were very surprised when the door melted. Darkness, crashes, screaming and roaring greeted them as they tried to enter the Charms Professor's office.
Using my sharp hearing, I heard them coming into the room. Not wanting to be discovered, I cast another Scattergloom spell and crashed his desk again to cover up the sound of my casting. I changed back into my Xix Steel persona and collapsed into the mostly undamaged chair I had seen earlier. Thirty seconds later when the spell finally ended, the room that greeted everyone's eyes was a disaster zone.
What once had been a neat and somewhat tidy room was now laid waste. The device was in smoldering splinters scattered about one side of the office. Chunks of Flitwik's desk were in different parts of the room. His window had been smashed at some point and more parts of his office escaped to a sixty foot fall. Acid scored walls and paintings lined one section of his wall. Several of his books still on the bookshelves had melted, and puddles of pulped paper were set alight in blue ever-burning fire. Flitwik, was found trembling behind a conjured shield in a mixture of crying and laughter.
After dropping his shield and staring at his office for a moment Flitwik finally spoke, "My boy after a display like that I do believe that some instruction is required! Come with me down to the Headmistress's office and we'll get you signed up! We'd do it here, but my office is having a bad day it seems. Heehaw"
The moving, whispering pictures distracted me on our journey down to the Headmistress's Office. Knocking on the door, Flitwik was surprised when a female voice yelled, 'Come in!' Entering her office, we came upon an older looking woman packing letters into envelopes while a green quill was writing addresses on the sealed letters by itself.
"Mr. Flitwik, Mr. Weasley, and who's this? To what do I owe the pleasure of this visit?"
"Minerva, this is Xix Steel. We've just come from his magic aptitude test that he passed, after a fashion, in my office. He wants to start here at Hogwarts this September 1st. Xix, this is Professor McGonagall, the Transfiguration Professor and the Deputy Headmistress. Mr. Weasley is here as his chaperone and guide."
"Sudden appearance of magical ability..., hmm," pulling open a drawer she pulled out a blue quill and handed it over to me, "Suck on the end of the quill for a moment until you taste the ink. Then set it atop this unaddressed letter."
I followed her instructions and watched as the quill stood up and began to address the letter to me in blue ink. Only problem was, was that it addressed it to my dragon name followed by my assumed human surname.
Mr. Xixtosovix Steel
The Basement and Caves under
9 Dackencrest Heights
As exciting as it was to find that I owned my very own cave system, having my real name on a school's records was a little unnerving. From the expression on the Professor's face, it looked as if she were dreading saying my difficult name with a passion. "Professor McGonagall, Xix is fine, but if you are that eager to say my name, it is pronounced, Zick's-to-so-vicks. Remember the long o's and the accent on the second 'x' and you'll be fine."
The odd expression on her face intensified for a few moments before fading quickly, "I'll see you on the 1st Mr. Steel, Good day."
With the dismissal Arthur and I headed back to the Burrow before he headed off to work having not said a word to me all day. The next day was the Wednesday that we were all going down to Diagon Alley. I could finally see about the property that I apparently owned and put my treasure into useable currency at this Gringotts bank I had heard so much about.