Disclaimer: I do not own either Harry Potter, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha or Castlevania.
orion0905: Thanks. And I'll probably go that route, as thinking up one title and summary was taxing enough! I don't think I want to deal with more of them anytime soon.
raigalcc: Well, sadly, at this point in time Nanoha is incapable of firing the "Befriending Cannon" due to her injuries. This will change eventually though. And Hayate still enjoys cosplay. The big question is to what extent though. I believe I've hinted at this already, but if I haven't I won't spoil it here.
The trolling SnarkLord: You say planned as if I currently have anything more than a loose outline with a few plot points for this year, a few tid-bits for between now and Strikers, and some free-floating ideas for post-Vivid. That said, I think one of those connections I mentioned before will be showing up this chapter, (at the time I'm writing this reply I haven't finished writing chapter 4) so hopefully I pull it off well enough. I was torn for a little while as to whether to split the girls up or not and had houses picked for both options, but in the end I decided that it would give me better opportunities if I kept them together. That bit about Nanoha & Fate came about from a combination of three things. Their relationship status at the time of Strikers (interviews say that they started dating before leaving school), the reunion scene from Movie 2nd A's (where Fate, who is normally not a very hugging person, holds Nanoha close), and the thought that, over time, Fate would come to realize just how bad things were with Precia and just how bad they could have gotten if not for Nanoha. Of course, some of those nightmares are brought about by Nanoha's accident, but that's going to happen for the both of them. And would you believe that I forgot about that last line until I added in the author's notes? I'm glad you liked the way I set up the summary, I'll try to keep them like that for as long as possible.
raynisia: Thank you. I'm kind of surprised at how well everyone seems to be taking the sorting. And as far as the future goes, there will be big events happening post-Vivid that will expand this universe just a bit more. We have to wait though, because I will not be fudging with the timelines of any series that has official calendar dates.
buterflypuss, god of all: Thank you for your kind words!
Yoshiki-909: Is it though? How do we know that the various styles you mentioned are not just different forms of will power, focus, and control? That's the problem with merging multiple magic using universes together, you have to decide on just how different the styles are.
pokemon-35055: Thanks. And yes, I did reference that story. Speaking of which...
Phoenixir: I'll try, but while I occasionally have issues with Ron I don't hate him, and I still very much like the Weasley's. Harry's support group is going to change quite a bit at the end of this year though. So while the Weasley's will still be around, they won't be quite as prominent.
edboy4926: Thank you. I have every intention of seeing this story through to the end no matter how long it takes.
Alvin FireSage: You're welcome. I'll try to answer questions as directly as possible, but if I feel that answering it might spoil things to come, then I'll hold off. And yeah, I decided to keep them together. Other (better) writers can tackle the "Splitting them up" method of sorting them.
Mangahero18: Thank you, I hope that you have enjoyed what you've read so far. I'm not sure if I've mentioned this before, but this story came about because of a single idea that wouldn't leave my head, that, aside from "Power of Eclipse", I haven't seen explored at all. In writing, outlining, and just plain thinking about where this story will go, the tone has never been a priority. The major thing I want to do with this story is expand the universe and explore options that could be. I've mentioned it before, but, Earth is a gathering point for everything Magical and otherwise. I might unintentionally grab an idea or two from "Reinforced Magic", but part of what makes that story unique is its take on the characters and how they interact with each other. I'm not changing fundamental facts like Lupine Horror is, so obviously I can't use him as an example to go by. Things will develop as I feel they should and, currently, I feel no need to make this story dark for the sake of being dark, but that's not to say that there won't be moments of darkness.
Rosalind Fairchilde: Well, I'm trying to keep the updates coming when I can, but there will be a minimum of one week between updates, mostly because that's the outright fastest I think I could get a chapter written, have my wonderful beta phoenixnext (Go read her work, she's better than I can ever hope to be!) look it over and implement any changes that she suggests to better the story.
Kuro-tan: Yep, they're all Lions. Hayate was always going to be a Gryffindor in this story, Nanoha could've been a Hufflepuff, and Fate might've been a Ravenclaw. And you're welcome to rant in the review section, as long as you keep it polite and don't insult people.
Cy Man: I'll look over those bits at the end of the prologue and, if I think it feels right, make the change you've suggested. As far as the Biggs & Wedge OC's, well… I honestly couldn't think of any better names, and as I have a slowly growing interest in Final Fantasy, they just came to mind. I'm sorry that Nanoha and Fate's wands weren't all that fancy, especially when compared to Hayate's, but I wanted to pick wands that I felt fit the characters. If you look up the properties of the woods and cores I used you should be able to see just why I picked each wood for each character. Besides, the Thunderbird Feather makes them similar to basic devices. I'm not surprised to hear that others have used the "Nightmare" trope before. I mentioned in my reply to SnarkLord how I feel the nightmares came to be. I also don't think I have brought up the accident to Harry, Ron, and Hermione yet, so the older nightmares are a convenient excuse to get Hermione to stop asking questions. And yes, Hayate is getting some special treatment. She's going to be the main bridge between Harry, Ron, and Hermione & Herself, Nanoha, and Fate. Aside from other things I have planned, but those are for later. And please, keep up with the constructive criticism.
elfbs: You know, someone on another site that I've posted this to asked about Hermione. I'll tell you what I told them. I have a relationship planned for Hermione, but it won't begin at all until the summer after fourth year at the earliest. The "Camera" is (at least currently) focused on Nanoha, Fate, and Hayate mostly because I still have to get them settled. These first few chapters before I start introducing original elements are important, and I have to set up the dynamic between everyone correctly or things won't work like I want them to. As for your comments about the NanoFate scenes… All of my experience with romance in any form is through reading various stories. As such, I'm basically flying by the seat of my pants trying to make something even remotely believable. I'll try and make them a little less forced, but, sadly, I can't promise much improvement in that department.
Chapter 4: The School Year Begins
Friday, September 2nd 1994
Great Hall, Hogwarts, Scotland
As students new and old enjoyed breakfast in the Great Hall, the Heads of Houses distributed schedules to their charges. At the Gryffindor table, Hayate, Nanoha, and Fate were enjoying breakfast and some light conversation when Prof. McGonagall came by with this year's schedules.
"Miss Yagami, Miss Harlaown, and Miss Takamachi," She began, "After breakfast is finished you are to report to the Headmaster's office."
"Do you know why we've been summoned Professor?" Nanoha asked.
"I do not know all the details, but I do know that Prof. Dumbledore will be addressing your schedules for the coming year."
"Thank you Professor."
"By the way, Prof. Dumbledore is rather partial to Nerds." And with that she walked off to continue handing out schedules to the rest of Gryffindor.
"Now what was that about?" Hayate asked
"That'll be the password for the gargoyle that guards the staircase up to Dumbledore's office." Harry replied, "He changes it every so often, and it's almost always a candy of some type."
"Huh, that's interesting. So what does your schedule look like today?"
"Well, I've got Herbology with Hufflepuff and Care of Magical Creatures this morning followed by lunch, then double Divination this afternoon. Definitely not looking forward to that class…"
"May I ask why you aren't looking forward to Divination?"
"It's because the Professor loves to predict my death. I wonder what new and exciting way I'm supposed to die she's thought up this time…"
"Maybe she'll predict something else today?"
"I can only hope."
Friday, September 2nd 1994
Headmaster's Office, Hogwarts, Scotland
"Miss Yagami, Miss Takamachi, Miss Harlaown, Please come in and have a seat." Prof. Dumbledore said as they knocked on the door to his office.
"We have much to talk about this morning," He began after Nanoha, Fate and Hayate had taken a seat, "Now, the first thing we need to talk about is your classes. When I visited your families this summer to enroll you in Hogwarts, I said that you would be taking an accelerated course to catch you up with your classmates. So, starting tomorrow, you will be taking the first year exams so that your Professors may place you appropriately."
"Prof. Dumbledore, may I ask how the exams will be handled?" Fate asked.
"An excellent question my dear! It's really quite simple, you will take the theory exams for Potions, Herbology, Charms, Transfiguration, History of Magic, Astronomy, Defence Against the Dark Arts, Arithmancy, Ancient Runes, and Care of Magical Creatures tomorrow, and the practical exams on Sunday. Depending on how well you do in the exams, your teachers may assign you some self study work for the following week and then next weekend you will take the second year exams. Hopefully you will be able to join your classmates before the month is out."
"That sounds like a lot of work in a short amount of time. May I ask how you came up with the idea?" Hayate asked.
"Certainly, Miss Yagami. The teachers decided to use this method when they realized just how much prep work they would have to put in for the tournament. Now, onto the next item on our agenda today. Miss Takamachi, I heard from Ms. Harlaown and Miss Shamal that you are still recovering from an accident you had last winter."
"Yes, that's right. I overworked myself to the point that my magic gave out on me at a really bad moment. If it hadn't been for Vita, I don't know if I would have survived." Nanoha replied.
"Oh dear… Well, Miss Takamachi, I do not know if your family told you, but my companion over there is a Phoenix. Fawkes' tears have healing properties, and I believe that they may be able to accelerate your recovery. He has kindly offered to provide you with a dose to see how they affect your core."
"Thank you Professor. Do you know when they will be ready?"
"Fawkes can produce healing tears at any time, but I believe we should do this in the Hospital Wing so that both Madam Pomfrey and Miss Shamal may keep an eye on you to determine how they affect you."
"Can we go there now Professor?"
"Certainly, let us make haste to the Hospital Wing. Fawkes if you would be so kind?"
And with a trill of notes, Fawkes flew from his perch to Dumbledore's shoulder.
"Now, let us be off."
Friday, September 2nd 1994
Hospital Wing, Hogwarts, Scotland
"I've never seen a Magical Core this damaged before. What did you say she did to it Shamal?" Madam Pomfrey asked.
"She's been overworking it ever since she was nine. It collapsed on her at the worst possible moment and as a result she almost lost her life. It took her seven months to recover enough to be able to walk on her own again, and even then she got exhausted easily." Shamal replied.
"Hmm, yes I can see that her muscles are still weak from whatever caused her injuries. Well, let's see how Phoenix Tears affect her shall we? Albus, Fawkes, Miss Takamachi, whenever you're ready."
And with that Fawkes cried some tears into a vial for Nanoha to drink. After she swallowed the tears, she felt a warmth spreading throughout her body.
"Impressive, Albus, it seems we can add Magical Cores to the list of things Phoenix Tears can treat."
"I still don't feel back to normal though." Nanoha said.
"Well of course you don't Miss Takamachi. The Phoenix Tears did not completely heal you, but if what Shamal has told me is true, then you appear to be at about two-fifths your old maximum. With a combination of Time and Phoenix Tears, I'd say you should be fully healed by about the middle of March."
"Well then, I believe my work here is done. Perhaps you three should head to the library to study for your exams tomorrow?" Dumbledore said.
And with that he walked away with Fawkes perched on his shoulder.
"Yes, I do believe you are good enough to get to studying Miss Takamachi. Do take care not to overwork yourself anymore than you already have." Madam Pomfrey said with a stern look.
"If I even think you're overworking yourself, Nanoha, I'll tie you to one of these gurneys so I can keep an eye on you." Shamal added.
"Eh heh heh… I'll be good Shamal. I have Fate-chan and Hayate to keep me from pushing myself too hard." Nanoha replied with a sheepish grin.
"Don't worry Shamal, I'll make sure Fate takes real good care of Nanoha." Hayate said with a wink, "Now come on you two, we've got studying to do!"
Friday, September 2nd 1994
Library, Hogwarts, Scotland
"Argh!" Hayate cried out as she dropped her head into a book on the table that she, Nanoha, and Fate were studying at.
"What's wrong Hayate?" Nanoha asked concerned for her friend.
"It's Transfiguration!" Hayate replied with a huff, "It barely makes any sense, breaks multiple laws of physics, and has it's own laws that seem to contradict themselves."
"Really?" Fate asked, "Maybe you should take a break from it then. I've been looking over Arithmancy and I think there's a fair chance we won't have any trouble with it."
"Really?" Nanoha replied, "What makes you say that Fate-chan?"
"It's quite simple really, even the NEWT level Arithmancy is nothing compared to the equations for some of the spells we already know. Nanoha, your Starlight Breaker is infinitely more complicated than most of what's in this book. There might be some little nuances we'll need to adjust to, but I think it's incredibly likely we'll be in that class come Monday."
"I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing… Well, I've been reading some History texts and I found something that's both interesting, and completely terrifying."
"And what would that be Nanoha?" Hayate asked.
"Apparently, Dracula is real."
"Dracula is real, and his most recent defeat was in 1944."
"I'm not sure if I should be glad he's gone or afraid that he even existed in the first place!"
"That's not the end of it though. Apparently, he's supposed to revive again somehow a few years from now."
"So, to recap, Dracula is real, he was beaten 50 years ago, and is due to return sometime in the next decade?"
"That's pretty much it, except for the fact that he's been around off and on since the Eleventh Century."
"I don't know what to say to that."
"I think we're going to need to pay close attention in History of Magic." Fate said.
"Why do you say that Fate-chan?" Nanoha asked.
"Because, I can't help but wonder what other things might be hiding in plain sight like that. If Dracula is real and has been a threat for almost a thousand years, what other legends and myths might be real?"
"That's a good point Fate, but I think we should try and get back to studying for the exams we'll be taking tomorrow." Hayate replied, "Now, shall we see what's awaiting us for Astronomy?"
And with the thought of exams coming the next day, they decided to study through lunch.
Friday, September 2nd, 1994
Great Hall, Hogwarts, Scotland
As Harry sat down for dinner, Hayate noticed that he looked a little unsettled.
"Harry, are you ok?" Hayate asked.
"Hmm? Oh sorry, I'm just thinking about something Prof. Trelawny said after class." Harry replied.
"Oh, honestly Harry." Hermione began, "She's about as likely to make any correct statements about the future as you are to get an 'Outstanding' in Potions."
"I… Maybe so Hermione, but… it's just… She asked me to stay back for a moment after class was over."
"And why did she ask you to stay?" Hayate asked.
"She told me, 'The past calls out to you Mr. Potter. Trust your dreams, and you shall awaken your true heritage.'"
"It sounds like a load of rubbish to me." Ron said.
"It's also incredibly vague. 'Trust your dreams'? That could be referring to just about anything. There's no reason to believe she knows anything more than normal." Hermione added.
"Yeah!" Hayate exclaimed, "I mean it's not like you've been having strange dreams that you can barely remember, right?"
"Well…" Harry began.
"You've been having strange dreams you can barely remember."
"Sort of? I've had a few dreams where I'm wandering around the castle seemingly without purpose, and occasionally I get flashes of some kind of symbol, but it's gone before I get more than the barest of glimpses."
"I'm sure it's nothing Harry." Hermione replied, "But on to you three. Where have you been all day?"
"We spent most of the day in the library studying." Nanoha replied.
"Spending a whole day in the library this soon?" Ron asked.
"Well, we need to study up for the exams we're taking tomorrow." Fate replied.
"Exams this early?!" Hermione nearly screamed, "Why are you taking exams so soon?"
"It's to give the teachers an idea of where we are." Hayate answered, "We'll be taking first year theory exams tomorrow, and then on Sunday we're going to take practicals. Depending on how we do we might get some self-study work for the following week."
"It's to get you caught up quickly isn't it?" Harry asked
"Mostly, though Prof. Dumbledore did mention that it was partly due to the workload the teachers are under because of the tournament."
"That makes some sense." Hermione replied, "I'm sure the professors have little things that are important in the grand scheme that is the tournament. Do you need any help studying? I know there's not much time left tonight, but we could probably help you out a little bit."
"Is there anything special we need to know about Ancient Runes?" Fate asked "It looks rather simple, but there could be any number of little details that could trip us up…"
"Runes are both incredibly simple and incredibly complex at the same time. They provide a more stable method of controlling magic, but they're also far less versatile. They're mostly used in warding schemes and enchanting because, when properly inscribed, they can last many years."
And they kept on like that through the rest of the night, eventually making it to bed with enough time to be well rested for the next morning and the exams that await.
Sunday, September 5rd, 1994
Gryffindor Tower, Hogwarts, Scotland
"That was exhausting!" Hayate complained as she sat down in a plush armchair in front of the fire.
"It was definitely a lot of work for one day." Fate replied as she collapsed on the sofa near Hayate.
"I'm pretty sure I'll fall asleep right away tonight." Nanoha said as slumped on the sofa right next to Fate.
"Are you feeling alright Nanoha?"
"I'm fine Fate-chan, just tired."
"Maybe you should take a nap Nanoha?" Hayate asked with a little grin.
"That sounds like a wonderful idea Hayate. I'll just take a little nap before dinner." Nanoha replied as she closed her eyes and leaned her head on Fate's shoulder.
AN: And so the school year begins... Eagle eyed readers will notice that I've included a reference to Castlevania in this chapter. It's actually part of my "Grand Plan" for this story. The focus will be on Harry Potter & Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, but there will be the occasional reference to other series out there in order to show that Earth is, was, and always will be a hub of extra-ordinary events (One of them will even be a small arc towards the VERY end of the story (We're talking post Vivid (Maybe even post Force))). Beyond that all I have to say is that in the next few (don't ask me for a number I'm not sure yet!) chapters we'll actually encounter some of the titular "Secrets of the Past", and I do hope you will enjoy that.
I'm incredibly sorry that this one took as long to come out as it did. I was unintentionally procrastinating as something that will be important in a few chapters still needs to be finalized, and the second-to-last scene took FAR too long to get started, amazingly, once I got the first part of that scene written, the rest just kinda flowed out. Ah, the perils and pleasantries of planning things out in the shower...
Finally, a HUGE thank you to the 102 people who have favorited and the 154 people who have followed this story so far! I hope that I can at least somewhat meet your expectations as I write this story.
Recommended Fic: "The White Devil of the Moon" by bissek. Nanoha has only just started to recover from the accident that almost took her life, and Fate will do just about anything to keep her from injuring herself again. She won't have an easy job of it as forces in a conflict long forgotten by time have decided that Nanoha is the key to ending their struggle once and for all. Faces once thought gone forever reappear and new friends and foes are made as Nanoha deals with memories of a past that mean so little to who she is now, and yet mean so much to those who think they know her. One of a few stories that I go back to every once in awhile, as it scratches an itch I didn't know I had until I found it.
Edit 5/30/17: Fixed a grammar error.