Training begins and a peek at what is going on in the regular world.
Discoveries and Sorrow
"Sorcerers, prophesies, Voldemort, why? Why does everything happen to me? Why can't I be just a normal sixteen year old?" Harry moaned as he rubbed his temples roughly. Unbeknownst to him, the other occupants in the room began to disperse for what they knew would be a very long night for Harry and Xander.
"How do you know so much about me? If you have known so much, why didn't you come save me from the Dursley's? Why are you just now telling me this? Why couldn't you have come to me sooner when it really would have counted?" Harry whispered, growing angrier by the second, so much could have been avoided if he had known.
The older man sighed as he watched the rage build up in this young man; he had been through so much in such a short period of time. "There was no way for us to contact you until you came into your final, magical growth spurt. We are not strong enough to cross the realms on our own; we had to 'borrow' some of your power during the growth spurt just to bring you over. Realm crossing takes a certain level of power that even I do not possess, but you do. The thousands of years spent here in this world have diminished our power, bringing you here used up most of our energy. As for how we know about you, well, our techniques are a bit different than what you are used to. Since we are not of this realm originally, we still have a strong connection to our home world. For you see, with a connection like that, we can use certain prisms to channel through the realms, thus allowing us to observe. These prisms can follow a certain chain of events or it could follow a life...like yours."
"I see, well, that does make some sense...I guess." Harry looked up finally, obviously still confused, but in no mood to hear it again. He would sort through his thoughts at a later time, sometime when he didn't feel like he had a Blast-ended Skrewt ricocheting through his brain.
"Harry, would your really have wanted to live a normal life? Being ignorant of the danger all around you, not being able to save the lives that you have, not having the adventures that you did, not meeting your friends? Would you really trade that for a boring, normal life?" Xander watched carefully as Harry clasped his hands in his lap to consider those aspects.
"You're right, no matter how much I want a normal life, I know that I wouldn't trade it for anything. There have been more bad than good experiences, but it has made me who I am today. Although, I would like to have gotten to know my parents and my godfather better before they died. I cannot truly imagine my life any different, no matter how much I want to change the past. It feels right the way it happened, almost as though it was meant to be this way all along. I will always wish that so many lives didn't have to be sacrificed, but this is war, it is inevitable." Harry sighed, "Your right, I need to stop thinking like this and accept it, I'll never survive if I don't. It was meant to be."
Xander smiled at the wisdom shown by this young man in front of him. "Harry, you know how you should usually trust your instincts. What did your instincts tell you when your godfather fell through that veil?"
Harry was silent for a few minutes before he replied. "I felt as though he wasn't dead, it still doesn't feel like he really is. I still expect to see him every time I am at headquarters... Are you saying that my instincts were right, that he isn't really dead?" At Xander's nod, Harry felt the first true smile appear on his face in a long time. "He's alive? When would we be able to get him back?"
Xander laughed at Harry's eagerness. "Yes, he is alive and safe. The veil that he fell through was a sorcerer's invention, we had used it as a prison over a thousand years ago. Unfortunately, we will not be able to retrieve him at this point. We will need to train you first, but don't worry, time travels differently here than in your world or the prison realm. The four years of training you will have here, will only be a year in your world, time here is multiplied by four. Before you lose your temper, hear me out. The reason that we cannot rescue your godfather now is simply because you do not have the power to cross a realm like that one right now. And like I said earlier, you are the only one who can, we will not be able to be there if something goes wrong. After your training you will be powerful enough to cross over as if it was nothing, but until that time your will need to build your powers wisely."
"Ok, what do I have to do?" With a determined look on his face, Harry agreed. The next hour was spent going over the curriculum for the next four years, and a time was set aside the next day to uncover what special abilities that he had within.
In a large stone room, a pale, deformed figure sat upon a throne deep in thought. "You are sure of this, how is this possible? The boy cannot have had that type of power, it is not feasible." Finally, the snake-like creature raised his head and hissed. "Ready the ritual, my plans have now been moved forward exponentially. Malfoy, you may go. Oh, before I forget. CRUCIO!" He whipped his wand out and pointed it at the badly burnt deatheater. "This is what you get for failure to me, do not attempt it again."
Watching the quivering mass in front of him, he smiled evilly at the pleasure of causing pain. Soon he would be all powerful once more. The brat was dead, the only one that possibly could have defeated him was gone. Ah, one less thorn in his side, he was perturbed though. If that boy could show that type of power, it meant that he would have to be more powerful than before. No point in taking a chance that he could be overpowered. The muggle-loving fool would have to be taken care of soon as well, he was the only real threat left to him. Finally he realized that he still had Malfoy under the curse, oops. Watching Malfoy being dragged out of his sight was rather intoxicating though.
The stunned looks being cast in his direction did not bode well with Harry. 'Great, now what, and what did they find this time?' He visually slumped within the overstuffed chair while awaiting the verdict. Already he had been tested positive for more gifts than was though possible. He had been found to be a teleporter and a multi-animagus on top of being a realm walker and a powerful sorcerer with the full use of wandless magic. What more could they find?
Xander and his group of researchers headed over from the table they had been leaning over for the past four hours. "Harry, I must admit, you have me at a loss of words." Sarah, the kindly woman that had helped Harry his first day, muttered something about being shocked over his loss of words, before plastering a sickening smile on her face when he glared back at her. The two of them reminded Harry so much of Ron and Hermione that it was impossible not to laugh at their antics. "As I was going to say before I was rudely interrupted here, we have found another one of your gifts. It appears that you have control over the elements of lightning, fire, water, and air. We are assuming that the strongest element would be your control over lightning, the scar on your forehead is the symbol of that ironically. What we will be doing over the next couple of days will be to find out what your animagus forms are. In the meantime, we have come up with the best matches for your instructors. I will be teaching you the usage of weapons and hand to hand combat. This one here." He jabbed his finger at Sarah, who scowled at him. "Will be teaching you healing and herbology." Pointing at an elderly man to his right. "Guran will be teaching you the art of mind magic and control. Vince here, will be teaching you to control your animagus forms and their fighting styles, as well as magical creature lessons." He nodded at a tall, bald man behind him. "Wolfus here, will be teaching you the history of our kind as well as etiquette in this world and yours." He pointed at a rather short, thin man practically being stepped on by a huge barrel of a man behind him. "Feynman here, will be teaching you advanced transfiguration and charms." He indicated the large barrel-man. "And Ziana here, will be teaching you potions." He waved at an older woman who came bustling into the room covered in a greenish goo.
"So sorry I was late, mild explosion in the lab, nothing to worry about. Just take this as a lesson not to turn your back on a three-kneed scalopus when you are trying to collect it's scales. Rather messy business that." At the sight of the big grins on everyone's face, she started to grow confused. "What?"
Everyone had a good laugh before they quickly calmed Ziana down from the full blown rant she was obviously preparing for. As everyone began clearing out of the small room, Xander pulled Harry back. "In the excitement of everything, I believe that I forgot to mention something. While you will be staying here, there will only be us instructors and a few servants. This location is very secluded from the rest of our world, you will not be meeting anyone your age while you are here. We are the elite of our kind, so we do not accept students unless they are exceptionally gifted, which has not happened in over twenty years." At the dejected look in his student's eyes, Xander mischievously added. "Although, I could use some help with a few 'projects' that I have planned for a few people, are you any good with pranks?"
The next couple of days passed quickly with the knowledge that Harry would be leaning the identities of his forms soon. Finally on the third day, the ritual was complete for the animagous forms. A pedestal of stone was set up in the middle of a large stone pit with torches lit every two feet. Clad in a dark blue robe, Harry anxiously paced in a small hut while everything was finished being set up. A few minutes later, Sarah came in to calm him down before leading him out. While his new friends and teachers looked on from the background, Harry quietly walked into the middle of the pit and began to climb the steps to the pedestal. Once on top, he nervously whispered a small incantation and the stone below him began to glow a greenish color before beginning to vibrate slightly.
Suddenly, Harry was wrapped in a golden glow as his form began to change, first wings began to sprout out of his back and grow, he also began to grow in size and become more reptilian. After a few seconds, a fully formed, thirty foot, golden dragon was resting on the stone. Then slowly he shrunk to large black lion with a distinct lightning bolt between it's ears. It roared in surprise and a jet of lightning shot from it's jaws and nearly barbequed Xander and Sarah, who had shoved each other out of the way just in time.
The next form was that of a large, blood red snake with a silver underbelly. It had black, mask-like markings on it's head, but the most noticeable feature was the inch and a half fangs protruding from it's gaping mouth. Slowly, the snake formed back into a human shape and everybody began to talk excitedly and head into the pit when the golden glow began to spread yet again, This time when the wings protruded out of Harry's back, they were black leathery wings with sharp metallic claws on the ends. A billowy tunic covered a muscular form as the fingers lengthened and grew into long, sharp talons. Black hair grew down to the middle of its back as pointed ears began to form, next were two long, vampiric fangs. At the end of this transformation, a glowing, green eyed demon was standing in the middle of the pit with a pale and gaping audience staring back. Slowly the golden glow began to spread yet again and the normal body of Harry Potter was standing with a shell-shocked expression on his pale face.
The last couple of months had been hard for everybody. The loss of Harry Potter had hit the wizarding world like a well rounded out punch. People hurried to their destinations, never wanting to be caught out in the open in fear of the ever increasing attacks by the Death Eaters. Hogwarts had started its new term with more enrolled students than ever recorded, as everybody wanted their child in a safe place. A few additions had been added to the large castle making it seem almost intimidating at times. More teachers had also been added onto the staff, there were now two Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers. Mad-Eye Moody and Remus Lupin had both accepted the posts again, although in Mad-Eye's case it was the first real time he would be teaching. Tonks had also agreed to teach transfiguration with Professor McGonagall.
Out of all of the changes taking place, the changes over Ron and Hermione were the most pronounced. Although their grades had not slipped, due to Hermione, they had grown distant to everyone, only Ginny had been able to break through their shell. Ginny, on the other hand, was as quiet as she was when she found out about Harry over the summer. She had once told the last two of the Golden Trio that she didn't think that he was dead, only to face an irate Mrs. Weasley about not raising their hopes for something that would not happen. No one was taking the news well except Voldemort.
Voldemort was ecstatic, he had just finished a new set of rituals for necromancy. Stepping lightly over the now ruined bodies of his sacrificial victims, he proceeded to his chambers to rest. The last couple of months after the Potter brat's demise had been some of the most productive he had had in nearly fifty years. He now was able to summon small demons to do his bidding at will, of course that didn't come without its payment in blood. He grimaced slightly at the memory of the demon he had summoned a month ago, even after all he had done the sight of that much gore was almost too much even for him.
Hissing in pain from the bloody cuts of his ritual daggers, he changed out of his stained ceremonial robes into his normal flowing black attire. After a couple of days of restful muggle torture, he would begin the next phase of rituals, this time he would need a much larger target for his necromancy. Maybe a dragon this time, although he would have a harder time controlling a non-human creature, he did not want to seem weak in front of his servants. A sign of weakness could possibly destroy all of his hard work, as well as lose some of his newest power-hungry recruits.
In a few months he would be powerful enough to attack Hogwarts, that old fool would not stand a chance against him this time. After that would be the Ministry of Magic, he was really looking forward to that one, aside from Hogwarts. The current minister may have been a useful pawn since his return, but that usefulness had diminished rapidly after the incident at the ministry. He could just imagine what sort of new torture he could do to Fudge, maybe he could kill him after some nice torture then raise him to walk the streets as a soulless minion. That would put some fear in those half-breeds and muggle-lovers. Cackling sadistically, he sat at his massive desk and began to make new plans, all thoughts of sleep quickly cast from his mind.
After his animagus testing, Harry had been given his new work schedule. To say that he would be busy would be an understatement. The first month would be solely dedicated to organizing his mind, improving his reading comprehension, and speed reading. Next, he would be reviewing all of the courses he had taken over the last five years in great detail. After he had reviewed everything within a couple of months, he would be taught the fundamentals of wandless magic, animagus transformations, elements, teleporting, and crossing the different realms.
After the first three months were up, Harry had needed a few days off to recuperate or have a nervous breakdown. Cramming five years worth of classes had exhausted him, but he had increased the review to include most of the more important spells and theory from the sixth and seventh years as well, leaving him feeling nearly catatonic.
Once he had started the basics of his new classes, Harry had had problems with organizing his mind from all of the now fresh knowledge that seemed to dispute with everything he had learned while in the wizarding world. He had always had problems with the spell work and theory, seeming to only just pass through his classes, except for Defense. It was discovered that the wizarding world taught their children in a completely different way than the way it had been over a thousand years ago. This particular style worked well with wizarding magic, but it hindered the way a sorcerer would learn. If the old teaching method had been kept, Harry's teachers had no doubt that Harry would have been the brightest student at Hogwarts. How Harry's ancestors had adapted was a mystery to everyone, the best guess was they had modified what they learned to fit their personal magic somehow.
After his break, Harry went straight into learning Occlumency and Legilimens, along with training with his new professors in their selected fields. Six months later, Harry had grown proficient in Legilimens, but still had a ways to go until he would be able to guard his mind against Guran.
Since he was able to enter Guran's mind with minimal effort at this point, the teacher's decided to hold a conference for a new study format. Starting immediately, Harry would be allowed to access the teacher's minds, with respect towards their private thoughts, to help his studies. The only downside for Harry would be that Guran would consistently try to break into his mind periodically throughout the day. This would improve Harry's defenses from Voldemort when he returned greatly; but it would be an inconvenience for both Guran and Harry, as whatever was on the surface of his mind would be exposed.
When Harry was informed of the new changes, he was ecstatic. He would be able to gain more knowledge and personal experience than he ever would normally within the four years he would be training here. Suddenly, Harry's grin took on a devious edge as he slowly turned his head to where Xander stood.
Xander's face paled suddenly, he had just allowed his fellow pranker access to his mind. He knew Harry would find someway to bend the rules to see more than surface thoughts, as he himself would do if he was able to. 'Oh Merlin, what did I get myself into?'
"Yes indeed, what did you get yourself into?" Harry asked innocently, although no one was fooled for a second. They knew Harry well enough that he would not think of imposing on their private thoughts, but he may pry a little at Xander just for fun.
Later that day, Xander came up to an amused Guran asking for help in learning Occlumency. Apparently, Xander had a sparring class in a few hours with Harry.
The next couple of months passed quickly with only a few mild pranks on Xander's behalf. Harry just could not peek into Xander's mind without feeling incredibly guilty, especially after catching Xander thoughts after a row with Sarah.
Other than the pranks, Harry was improving at a remarkable rate. He was able to see the mistakes that his teachers had made and learn from them, thus gaining a second hand experience for magic and combat of nearly two hundred and fifty years combined. The training he had undertaken in his first month here had helped to establish a photographic memory within a very well organized mind.
After being in this realm for nearly a year and a half, Harry was able to beat Xander within only a minute on a bad day. The time had come when he was beyond what Xander could teach him, so a new training regiment was put into effect. Harry would continue to workout in the mornings, but instead of the normal sparring, he would begin to study the different scenarios for battles throughout history, muggle and magic wielding. Xander would still spar with him, but now it would be a melee battle between him and all willing teachers. Only Sarah stayed out of the sparring practices, Ziana had joined in with her pockets stuffed to the brim with different potion grenades.
The first battle had been a complete success with no one able to stand due to exhaustion. After that first battle, Harry was able to last longer and longer within the fights until a month and a half later when he was able to outlast everyone.
AN- Please let me know how you like this story (if at all) by leaving me a review! No flames please! I'm still trying to deal with the charred remains of my room from my very first story (posted elsewhere for a reason!). Yep that's right, move that mouse just a little bit lower and to the left. See that little button marked "Review"? Good. Now press it!