Dawn on Ohara
Harry regained consciousness abruptly. He groaned as he lifted himself off the rough ground and peered around with furrowed brows. He was sitting in a sparse forest with only a few short trees, but thick vegetation covered the ground. In the distance, the sun was beginning to set behind a large structure that he couldn't make out. Ignoring his surroundings for the moment, he stood up and checked himself over. He was dressed in brown hiking pants and a long-sleeved green shirt. His messy hair was shoulder length, and his beard was equally unkempt. He carried a leather bag over his shoulder and a moleskin pouch around his neck. Grabbing a canteen that was strapped to the outside of his bag, he took a long drink as he continued to look around. After quenching his thirst, his stomach demanded attention, so he satisfied it with a sandwich from his bag while considering his situation. Deciding that he needed to figure out where he landed, he looked to the structure in the distance and started to head in its direction. As he walked, he thought about how he ended up here.
Two weeks ago, Harry traveled to Japan while following rumors of a cursed fruit. It was apparently being housed in an abandoned village's temple, but the local muggles claimed that it was impossible to approach the temple and insisted that a demon was sealed into the fruit.
A week after his arrival, Harry was trekking up a mountain trail, looking for the abandoned village. As he reached the summit of a steep hill, he huffed out a harsh breath and rested on a boulder while looking around. The main path continued through a dense forest, going around a massive cliff face that was covered in thick vines, but a less defined path led towards the base of the cliff. He took a gulp of water from his canteen and pulled out an old map that a local had marked the location of the village on. Looking back and forth between his surroundings and the map, he realized he was in the marked spot. Putting away the map, he stood and made his way up the less defined path. When he reached the cliff, he began to walk along the base while periodically pulling the vines apart. After a few minutes, he found a large dark cave, hidden behind the thick vines.
Harry flicked his wand out of a wrist holster and produced a beam of light as he made his way inside. As he walked further in, the shadows seemed to press in around him. Stopping for a moment, he ran a few diagnostic charms and hummed at the results. Feeling confident it was safe, he continued forward. The shadows pushed in faster everything was swallowed by darkness. He fought down his instinct to panic as he sensed magic flaring around him. Abruptly, he was tugged forward. When he came to stop, his vision cleared, and he found himself standing outside of an overgrown village. He sighed in relief and chuckled as he looked around. Taking in the massive hollow that the village sat in, surrounded by towering cliffs, he let out a whistle and muttered, "Wow…"
The entire village existed in a space of its own, completely sperate from the rest of the world. Based on some of the descriptions of the village, he had suspected that it existed in its own pocket dimension, but it was shocking to see it for himself. Dimensional magic on that scale was difficult for even modern magicals and based on the amount of the village that had been reclaimed by vegetation, he guessed it had been abandoned at least a century ago.
Shaking off his shock, Harry began to explore the village. As he strode around, he cleared the vegetation off of some of the buildings and looked over the architecture while running a few charms to help him estimate their age. He also searched through a few of the homes and recorded his findings in a small notebook. By the time he reached the village center, he determined that the oldest buildings were put up sometime during the 15th century, but he couldn't figure out why the village was abandoned. He found no signs of an attack or natural disaster, and the homes still held basic belongings like pots, tools, and clothing. It seemed like the villagers had just suddenly disappeared. Standing in the village center, he planned out a more thorough investigation.
Harry ended up spending a few days examining the village and documenting everything he could find. He performed several divinations and managed to determine that a large magical disturbance coincided with the abandonment of the village, but he was unsure of how it was involved. Having saved the temple for last, he made his way to the back of the village, where a towering gateway led up to it. The temple was smaller than he expected, only about the size of a shed. There was a large clearing around it that lacked the overgrowth which covered the rest of the village. The doors of the temple were open, and he could see a persimmon fruit sitting on a pedestal within. The fruit was slightly larger than normal and covered in swirl-like patterns.
When Harry tried to step into the clearing, he abruptly found himself on the other side of the temple. After turning around and stepping towards the clearing from behind, he ended up where he began. Using some diagnostic charms, he scanned the boundary but was confused by the results. The protective enchantments were unlike anything he had ever come across. It was as if the temple was simply an illusion. He suspected it was further use of dimensional magic.
However, Harry did recognize a small part of the enchantment that was similar to a popular anti-muggle spell from three centuries ago. It was usually placed on doors and required a pulse of magic to unlock. He tried pulsing his magic at the boundary and gasped as he was abruptly yanked towards the temple. His vision blurred for a moment before he found himself standing inside the clearing. Quickly patting himself down, he found that he still had all of his limbs, so he sighed in relief and deemed it a success. He took a moment to walk around the temple, recording its structure in his notebook before heading inside. The scene that greeted him was very different from the outside view.
The inside was at least twenty times larger, and the fruit was surrounded by many delicate instruments. A large ritual circle was charred into the floor, with the pedestal in the middle of it. He recognized a few of the instruments and some of the ritual circle, but they were mostly foreign to him. It was tempting to examine the fruit, but he was weary of it actually being cursed so he avoided touching anything for now. Needing more information, he decided to perform a divination targeting the fruit.
Harry sat cross legged and pulled out a small pouch from his bag. It was filled with various herbs and when burned, would help maintain his focus. Setting the pouch alight, he placed it in front of him before closing his eyes and beginning to mutter a quiet chant. As he chanted, he pushed magic to flow into his head and weaved it into a complex pattern. As the pattern was completed, he began to pulse his magic repeatedly while taking deep breaths of the burning herbs. Focusing his thoughts solely on the fruit and its history with the village, he was quickly inundated with flashes of scenes too fast to follow. When he felt his magic slipping out of his control, he stopped pulsing it and quickly shattered the pattern. For a moment, he continued taking deep breaths while calming his magic before letting out a sigh and opening his eyes.
Most practitioners would meditate on their divinations, but Harry preferred to review his visions in a pensive. Pulling out a pensive from his bag, he carefully isolated the visions in his mind and dumped them into the bowl. When he entered the pensive, his first sight was of a tall muscular man appearing in the village from a wormhole. The man was shirtless, covered in bleeding wounds, and had a large skull and crossbones tattoo across his chest. The villagers attempted to treat him, but he eventually succumbed to his injuries. Sometime later, the villagers found the fruit.
Harry saw various scenes of the villagers researching the fruit until he eventually saw the temple packed with people, with even children present. Ten of the villagers were sitting around a ritual circle and feeding it magic. The fruit sat in the middle of the circle and a wormhole started to slowly appear above it. The wormhole continued to grow until a villager in the ritual circle fainted and it began to erratically warp in shape before it completely collapsed. For a moment, everything fell still, then magic burst outward in a bright flash. When the light faded, the fruit remained on the pedestal, but the villagers had vanished.
Harry came out of the pensive unsettled, but thoughtful. It seemed that the fruit held some power to create wormholes and the wounded man used it to enter the pocket dimension. The villagers tried to use a ritual to draw power from the fruit, but ultimately failed and were likely dead or transported someplace else. Sighing, he stood up and continued to examine the temple.
Harry spent another few days in which he both finished examining the temple and restored the village to its previous state. Being quite skilled in restoration, he could accurately decrease the decay of even ancient ruins by at least few hundred years. Restoring a village only abandoned a century ago was simple for him. After clearing out the vegetation and repairing the minor damage, he took notes on its original appearance.
Having finished his work, Harry was ready to leave. However, it seemed irresponsible to leave a potentially dangerous magical artefact just lying around, so he decided to take the fruit to the Japanese magical government when he submitted his findings on the village. After running a myriad of diagnostic charms to ensure it was safe to safe to handle, he grabbed the fruit and placed it into his bag. He made his way out of the village and entered the cave, not bothering to light his way this time. However, as the shadows began to press in on him, the ground started to violently shake, and he was barely able to stay on his feet when he felt himself being yanked out of the pocket dimension.
Harry landed on the ground outside of the cave with a thud and groaned as he started to push himself off the ground. Hearing rumbling behind him, he looked back to the cliff and froze in place as his pupils constricted. The cliff was crumpling inward, exposing a tear through the fabric of space itself. Realizing that the pocket dimension was collapsing, he scrambled to his feet and tried to run, but was yanked towards the cliff instead. Magic flooded his body as he slammed his hands and feet into the ground, barely resisting the pull. Knowing that even if he wasn't sucked in, it would be a miracle if he wasn't completely torn apart by the aftershock of the collapse, he tried to crawl further away. However, the pull grew strong enough to yank the ground right out from under him and he shot towards tear in space. The fruit didn't seem to care for that fate much since it immediately whisked itself away into a wormhole. Given that the fruit was in his bag, Harry joined it for the ride.
Harry suddenly stopped walking. Opening his bag, he snatched up the fruit and gritted his teeth as he stared at it with narrowed eyes. He wanted to squeeze it until it burst but was terrified what might happen if he tried. His best guess was that when the wormhole collapsed a century ago, the pocket dimension became unstable, and the fruit was the only thing holding it together. Sighing, his shoulders slumped, and he began to return the fruit to his bag but froze before he could place it inside. Leaving a magical artifact that caused the destruction of a pocket dimension in his space expanded bag was just asking for trouble. Quickly pulling out a cloth pouch, he stored the fruit inside and spent a few minutes charming it with various spells to prevent damage before tying it next to his canteen. He didn't want to know what would happen if the fruit felt threatened again.
Feeling exhausted, Harry hoped there was some type of civilization ahead. Thirty minutes later, he only found ruins spread out in front of a massive tree. A very dead and very burnt tree. With the sun setting and exhaustion setting in, he decided to pitch a muggle tent for the night, opting against using his magical tent while carrying the fruit on him. While circling the tent, he placed down some rudimentary protection spells. Before entering, he found a large rock and levitated it inside. After transfiguring the rock into an uncomfortable bed, he dropped onto it and quickly fell asleep.
The next morning, Harry groaned as he rolled off the bed. After completing his morning routine, he stepped outside. Seeing the ruins under the morning sun, he could make out much more. There were hints of a once large town residing here, but now it was covered in chunks of rubble and sparse vegetation. There were craters littering the ground, some of which had become small ponds surrounded by plants. The tree at the back of the ruins must have been ancient. It had fallen over at some point, but still towered above everything.
Deciding to explore, Harry made his way towards the tree and examined a few structures still standing along the way. They were much older than he expected, some dating back 600 years. They seemed to get even older than that as he neared the tree, but it was difficult to determine because the condition of the ruins got significantly worse as well. Vegetation was barely beginning to grow, and the buildings were reduced to their foundation.
When Harry neared the edge of the ruins, his jaw dropped as he realized there was still a large stretch of land before he reached the increasingly massive tree, and it only grew larger as he crossed the field. As he reached the toppled tree, he stood below it, feeling miniscule in its presence. Even its roots, surrounding a pit filled with water where the tree once stood, dwarfed him. Unfortunately, it was only the burnt husk of what must have been a magnificent site. While craning his head up, trying to see the top, he wondered if he could catch a glimpse of the tree in a divination.
Divining the past was a tricky magic, he couldn't peruse through the years at his leisure. With strong intent and will, he could guide the divination onto a specific subject. The subject being nearly anything, including objects, locations, events, or even people. However, if his intent and will were lacking, he might get lucky and simply divine the wrong subject, but it was more likely that he would be overwhelmed with information. Usually, he needed to increase his understanding of the subject before attempting a divination. That could be accomplished through physical observations, historical research, or some low danger general divinations.
The amount of preparation depended on the subject and the information he wanted to find. The further in the past he was trying to divine, the more likely a divination was to latch onto the wrong subject. On the other hand, if he was divining a subject with rich history, it was more likely to overwhelm him. In addition, divining anything of great significance was inherently dangerous. He had been told many stories of arrogant practitioners that lost their minds by trying to divine significant historical events.
As fascinating as the ruins were, Harry was still unclear of where he was transported. Having little knowledge of dimensional magic, he was hesitant to attempt apparition without confirming his location first. Turning back to the town, he started to head back as he considered the dangers of divination and what he knew so far. The destruction of the town only occurred between fifteen to twenty years ago, and it was unlikely that such a small town would carry much significance. The craters and lack of vegetation suggested the town was destroyed by muggle bombing, followed by a sustained fire that damaged the soil. It wasn't much, but he was anxious to ensure he could actually get home, so he convinced himself that the risks were low and that he had pieced together enough of the event to divine more information safely. The small voice in the back of his head telling him it was bad idea was quickly silenced.
Sitting cross legged outside of his tent, Harry lit a set of herbs before he started to chant. Cautiously, he weaved his magic into the needed pattern and focused on the town. As soon as he began to pulse his magic, he immediately knew it was a mistake. As information flooded his mind, he quickly shattered the pattern but was still left sprawled on his back and gasping for breath. His magic flared out of control as his stomach rolled violently. Swiftly rolling over, he vomited into the grass. After emptying his stomach, he scrambled away from the mess before collapsing to the ground. Taking deep breaths, he forced his magic to calm down and tried to sort through the information pounding into his head.
He was on an island, in a town that was several millennia old, and it was a place of gathering from around the world. The history of the island was as vast as the ocean itself. He would have been immediately lost to its currents if his magic hadn't latched onto the village's destruction. However, that was hardly a good thing for his mind. It was an extremely significant event, deeply interconnected to both historical and modern events. He was nearly lost to the thousands of threads linking across the world.
Once he was sure his mind wasn't going to crack, he pulled himself up and trudged over to his tent. After slowly putting up his protections, he stepped inside and sat on the floor cross legged. He began to meditate and spent hours trying to sort out the mess of information but made little sense of it all. However, he did discover one very alarming fact. He was no longer in his own world. The fruit had dragged him into a completely different world.
Harry jumped up and started to pace back and forth. This was so much worse than he feared. Glaring down at the fruit tied to his bag, his hands itched to crush it, but his fear won out. Taking a deep breath, he stopped pacing and tried to focus on how he could get home. Apparating or portkeying out of a pocket dimension was a quick way to never be seen again so trying it from different world was out of the question. The fruit was an option, but that would take years of research before he felt safe using it. Beginning to pace again, he wracked his brain for more options, but his mind was still a mess from the divination. Groaning, he dropped his head in his hands and massaged his throbbing forehead. Realizing he needed rest, he decided to think about it in the morning. After collapsing onto his uncomfortable mattress, he did his best to quiet his anxious thoughts until sleep took him.
After a night's rest, his mind was far more relaxed, so he laid in bed and considered his situation. It wasn't as horrible as he first thought. After all, he had spent the past eight years traveling the world while exploring historical sites, so he could simply treat this new world as another expedition. It's not like there was much waiting for him in his world, he had barely spoken to anyone back in magical Britain in the last four years. Ron, Hermione, and he had grown apart in the decade after Hogwarts and although he still loved them deeply, they rarely spoke, let alone actually got together. Even when they did, he often felt uncomfortable, constantly fearing their eventual disappointment in him. He was comfortable with Luna, and she accompanied him on a few of his expeditions, but she and Rolf were happily travelling together now. Most of his remaining friends were more passing acquaintances or brief co-workers since he rarely stayed in one place and usually tried to stay under the radar.
Being in this world could actually be a good thing for him. A chance to travel in peace, free of ridiculous expectations. The thought excited him more than he cared to admit. Regardless, he could think of no way to get home for now, so if he was stuck, he might as well enjoy his time here as he slowly worked out a way home. Wanting to keep busy, he decided to work on restoring the ruins, so he hopped out of bed and headed into the town. As he worked, he considered his life after stopping Voldemort.
He had helped rebuild Hogwarts after the battle, but he didn't return for his final year. He spent that year doing self-study and helping George in the shop while letting his newfound fame cool off. Eventually, he joined the aurors for a year before abruptly quitting and deciding to travel the world; a decision he insists had nothing to do with things not working out with Ginny. Luna suggested that he travel with a group of wizards that restored and conserved historical sites around the world, so he offered them his services to handle any dangerous creatures or situations they encountered. After spending a year with them, he ended up learning much of their craft.
During his last expedition with them, he was attacked by a rising Dark Lord in China. The man apparently thought killing the defeater of Voldemort would bolster his cause. Harry didn't even know who he had defeated until he saw the story across international news outlets. His fame was cemented after that, and governments were asking him to take up an official position. However, he had gotten a taste for exploring ancient sites, so he chose to apprentice under a magical archeologist instead.
She trained him for three years before sending him off on his own. While training under her, he was still often recognized in magical areas and asked to handle all manner of local issues. He found it hard to deny people when faced with their desperation, but his mentor rarely let him get involved while traveling with her. Nevertheless, he did help occasionally, and she wasn't there to stop him when he set off on his own, so his fame only continued to grow.
He became frustrated when people began to criticize him for not handling situations that had nothing to do with him. They scorned his choice to become an archeologist and insisted he should do something more beneficial to the world. He didn't mind occasionally helping communities with dark creatures or wizards that plagued them and even enjoyed the challenge at times, but he didn't want to live his whole life in the service of others.
The pressure to live up to their growing expectations ate away at him until he simply started hiding from the world. He let his hair grow out, grew a messy beard, got his eyes healed, and began wearing ragged clothing. People rarely recognized him after that and only the desperate asked for help when he looked so unkempt. He felt guilty for the scheme, but he just wanted to be an archeologist.
He loved the adventure and mystery a historical site presented. He had always been too curious to ignore a mystery and too brave to shy away from an adventure. He blamed his aunt Petunia for the former. If she passed anything onto him through his childhood, it was being overly nosy. However, he was often a victim of gossip growing up, so he pointed his nosy energy into his boundless curiosity instead. It got him into a lot of trouble over the years. However, he did learn to appreciate gossip as he started hunting down lost sites and became quite skilled at navigating rumors for quality information.
Harry spent a week restoring most of the outer town and had taken to living in one of the rebuilt houses. Since he moved the furniture, appliances, and supplies over from his magical tent, it felt like a proper home. Having found a few books under some of the rubble, he was skimming through them at night. To his surprise, they were all in Japanese. Thankfully, his mentor had insisted he learn many different languages and he knew Japanese well. The books were mostly fiction, but he gathered some thoughts based on the content. The stories generally took place on islands or traveling the ocean. Pirates, bandits, and naval soldiers called marines were often featured. If he hadn't found a journal that mentioned similar things, he might have thought it was just a popular genre in this world. However, it seemed he had come to a world covered in mostly ocean.
One entry in the journal caught his eye in particular. It spoke of a young girl being cursed for eating an evil fruit and the owner of the journal told her child to stay away from the girl. He had come across the idea a few times in the fiction books, but the descriptions were inconsistent. One book described a man eating a rotten apple that turned him into a devil, yet another book described a woman eating a glowing strawberry that blessed her with eternal youth. The former was more common, and they tended to be described as an evil fruit that gave demonic abilities. He couldn't help but compare them to the fruit that dragged him here and wondered if it brought him to its original world.
Currently, Harry was trying to decide what to do next now that the town was as repaired as he could manage. The ruins closer to the tree weren't finished, but they needed more advanced spellwork. Objects hold memory of their past configurations and basic repair spells simply restore objects to their strongest memory, but through enough time or destruction, an object's memory can become incomplete or completely lost. There were more advanced restoration spells, but that portion of the town was completely destroyed, so he would have to reconstruct the area by combining divination with his spellwork. Essentially, he would supply materials and his magic would build the structures by using the past as a template. However, his mind was still recovering from the backlash of his first attempt at divination.
Having not returned to the tree after his first day on the island, Harry decided to work on cleaning up that area. After making his way over, he began to clear out any weeds that had grown around the pit and worked to remove the remaining roots surrounding it as well. However, after clearing the roots, he stared at the pit while scratching his head and tried to figure out how the huge pit had even formed in the first place. Examining the burnt trunk more closely, he noticed it was mostly hollow inside and guessed the pit was once a basement that connected with the space in the tree above. Having seen trees used as shelters in a magical village in South America, it seemed reasonable. The villagers had even taught him an easy method to promote growth of non-magical trees and shape them into almost any form. However, the burnt tree in front of him was much larger than anything they had grown.
Wanting to preserve some form of the tree so its history wasn't completely lost, Harry laid down enchantments to prevent further decay of the toppled trunk. It was tiring, but he smiled as he wiped the sweat from his head and looked upon the protected trunk. Peering back over to the cleaned-up basin, he grew curious about what might be at the bottom. Rather than diving down to search, he decided to drain the water from the pit into a large lake not far from the tree. Modifying a spell used to siphon potions from a cauldron, a large stream of water burst from the pit towards the lake. It would take some time to drain, but he could explore the rest of the island while he waited.
Harry thought it would be easiest to scout the island with his animagus form. His mentor had guided him through learning the transformation during his time with her. She was a squirrel and often used it to gather information or scope out magical ruins. It was a long process that included learning various meditations to determine his animal form before doing extensive research. Then, he transfigured hundreds of objects and animals into his form until it became second nature. Finally, he just had to transfigure himself, without a wand. It was by far the most difficult piece of magic he had ever learned. Trying to direct his magic to transfigure his body from the inside out was like trying to learn a new language without the aid of spells. Regardless, after two years of study, he had completed his transformation.
Harry was bitter that Wormtail mastered it as a student, yet it took him two years as a fully trained wizard. He theorized that it was actually easier for children to learn the transformation than adults because it required using magic in a way unlike any other spellwork. In fact, after learning the transformation, his magic was much more malleable within his body. Experimenting with it, he found many uses for manipulating magic within his body. He learned to temporarily increase his strength, speed, and stamina. Plus, he could improve all five of his senses, increase his passive healing rate, and his wandless magic became much easier. The only downside was it took a lot of magic to maintain his enhanced abilities.
Weary of transforming with the fruit on his person, Harry stored it in the house he had taken over. As he stepped back outside, he jumped up and took off into the air. He wasn't surprised to learn his form was a bird. However, he was confused by it being the common swift. That was until he learned that swifts are one of fastest and most versatile fliers in the world. Some large predator birds may hit higher top speeds, but a swift didn't need to dive to hit its top speed. Moreover, he was capable of quick complicated maneuvers as a swift. Quickly reaching high above the island, he let out a shrill scream. While speeding through complex maneuvers, the tension he had been carrying since his arrival was slowly released. After a couple hours of flying, he headed back down to explore.
The island was surrounded by cliffs on all sides except for a small portion that leveled out into a beach. The entire island was still recouping from the attack and young trees were only just starting to reclaim the land. Harry couldn't imagine the destruction that was let loose some two decades ago. He found no signs of people recently inhabiting the island, but he did spot a large cave near one of the cliffs that he decided to double back and investigate. After diving down, he leveled off at the ground and glided towards the cave. As he neared the entrance, he transformed into a brisk walking pace. He was rather proud of his ability to seamlessly transform, especially after his mentor laughed at him for months while he found himself collapsing, face planting, or sprawled across the ground when trying to transform initially.
The cave was mostly empty besides a few scattered belongings, but he did find a book under a large tarp across the floor. Harry hit it with a few restoration spells and started to read it as he walked out of the cave. Looking through the table of contents, he saw it was actually about archeology and decided he would have to read it later to see if there were any differences in this world. Slipping it into his bag, he took off into the sky again and made his way back to the tree.
Checking on the pit, Harry estimated the spell would need to run overnight before the water was clear, so he headed back to his house. After changing into more comfortable clothes, he dropped into a chair and pulled out the archeology book. While looking it over more closely, he noticed writing on the back of the cover that he missed earlier. It read, "Property of NR."
As he skimmed through the text, he noticed NR had written many corrections and expanded ideas into to the margins of the book. He also found a few papers in the section about deciphering novel languages. NR had apparently been trying to decipher some written language because the papers were covered in tiny handwriting that translated many unusual characters. After flipping through a few sections, he saw that while the original content wasn't much different from his own studies, the notes had some great advice and knowledge. Deciding to read it over more closely in the future, he put it into his bag before laying down to sleep. Before slipping into his dreams, he wondered if NR was somewhere out there exploring archeological sites.
Harry checked on the lake first thing in the morning. The pit was completely empty, save some random debris. After clearing out the junk, he transfigured a ladder and climbed down. In the center of the floor, there was large square indentation with a thin crack going from one corner to the other. Kneeling down, he peered into the crack, but the floor suddenly collapsed from under his feat. With a startled yelp, he quickly transformed and flapped to sturdier ground. Transforming back, he peaked over the edge of the new hole and could see many books, some scrolls, and two chests down below, covered in rubble and dust. His mentor's voice, berating him for his carelessness, filled his mind as he cleared out the debris and transfigured another ladder to head down. The books and scrolls had suffered from water damage, so he spent some time carefully working to restore them.
Feeling less anxious about his findings falling apart, he was momentarily overwhelmed on where to begin. The temptation of a closed chest quickly won out though, so he knelt down and opened the smaller chest first. Inside were a two glass instruments connected to wrist bands. Lifting one of the bands, he saw it held a small glass orb containing a compass needle. After taking some notes, he carefully placed it back in the chest and closed the lid. Moving to the other chest, he found it was locked, but after a quick unlocking charm, he had it open. His breath caught in his throat at the sight inside. Sitting there innocently was another demonic fruit. Taking a deep breath to relax his pounding heart, he convinced himself that the fruit meant him no harm and began to actually observe it. It was a large blue pear with hundreds of tiny swirls. The stem was bright green and elongated into a T-shape that swirled at one end. After taking a few notes, he closed the chest, locked the chest, and covered the chest in enough protective charms to hold off dragon fire. Standing up, he dusted himself off, and proceeded to ignore the chest entirely.
While looking over all the books and scrolls, Harry sighed. He enjoyed a good read, but he couldn't muster much energy when faced with a hundred thick books and twenty more scrolls. Summoning some of the stone debris from above, he transfigured it into a surprisingly comfy chair. After grabbing a random book, he reluctantly began to read. Nevertheless, he quickly found himself sucked into the history of this world.
Harry spent two months going over everything in the room, twice over. When he needed a break, he worked his magic to slowly grow a new tree in place of the one lost. Relocating 40 trees to surround the pit, he used magic to slowly grow and shape each one wider. After the trees were fused together into one unit, he switched to growing it in height, leaving a large hollow space inside. Before his second dive into the texts, he spent time both laying down protections around the town and weaving powerful enchantments into the growing tree. He wanted them both to be protected from any attacks or natural dangers. He might have been going overboard for an abandoned island, but he couldn't help it after discovering what the island once held.
The island was called Ohara, and it was once the world's heart of archeology. The burnt tree was once an enormous library called the Tree of Knowledge. At the time of making the sealed room, the Ohara archeologists were studying the void century, a period of time completely lost to history. One of the scrolls discussed their intent to fully begin the study of poneglyphs, indestructible messages left behind during the void century. However, the World Government had banned all research into poneglyphs, so the archeologists created the room and filled it with the information needed for someone to restart the search if Ohara ever fell.
The books outlined the basic history of the world, both before and after the void century. Such as the formation of the worldwide empire known as the World Government. The scrolls discussed the archeologists' personal theories, contained world maps of various eras, and detailed what they knew about poneglyphs at the time. Their knowledge of the poneglyphs wasn't much at the time of sealing the room, but he still found it fascinating. The unusual compasses were needed to navigate the Grand Line, a strange sea that normal compasses didn't work. They believed many poneglyphs resided within the Grand Line. Unfortunately, he could only assume Ohara's research was discovered, and the World Government destroyed the island in retaliation.
After yearning for a place like Ohara for years, Harry felt helpless when he looked upon the burnt tree. It sounded like a paradise to the part of him that was tired of hiding from the world. Being an archeologist gave him joy, but the magical world made him constantly doubt himself. Shame and guilt had followed him since he was child so he could never just follow his desires without feeling selfish. He knew those feelings would never completely fade. They were scars left over from his childhood. However, he worked hard to not let them dictate his life, but it was difficult when the magical world judged his every action. An island of archeologists would be a fantasy come to life for him. He was too late though. The archeologists were gone.
Fully restoring Ohara would take many years of work, but he hoped to at least lay the foundations for it to be revitalized one day. It was foolish, but a part of him wanted to restore the library himself. The Tree of Knowledge must have accumulated texts for millennia though, and it would be dangerous with the World Government looming as a threat. It wasn't the first impulsive urge he experienced, so he would pay it no mind until it faded away entirely.
Harry had learned a lot about Ohara and this world, so he attempted to divine the towns' history again. As he sat cross legged and pulsed his magic, he struggled to keep the divination focused on the island. It was so well connected to the present world that his magic wanted to bounce from thread to thread of interconnected places, people, and events. It terrified him to imagine how easily he could have been lost in that sea of information if he hadn't immediately stopped his first attempt. His struggle was rewarded with a myriad of impressions flashing through his mind. After shattering the pattern, he breathed out slowly as a smile grew on his face. Carefully, he performed a few more divinations before retreating to his house to analyze the results.
Divinations provided information in various forms. Some needed to be interpreted to make any sense. For example, he could divine changes in population, weather patterns, or even the health of the land. However, it took him two and half years to be able to consistently interpret such divinations accurately. Others required little interpretation but were more dangerous. Such as those that gave him visions of the past or allowed him to hear history play out. In addition, he could divine through his magical senses, but that was only useful for magical subjects. The auditory divinations were extra useful for Ohara because he could actually understand the language.
Harry excitedly analyzed his visions in the pensive. Finally getting a chance to see the Tree of Knowledge, he was in awe of its towering form. The tree he was currently attempting to grow was much smaller and would likely not match it by the time he was done. He got a few glimpses of the library as well, and it was much larger than he expected, housing at least 50,000 books. He caught a brief glimpse of the room in the pit and saw that a poneglyph had once sat above the sealed room. However, most of the visions depicted the island and town over their long history. Those would be helpful in his reconstruction efforts. While soaking in the images, his stomach dropped as the scene shifted to the island burning. It was surrounded by war ships, and they were wantonly opening fire. The vision only lasted for a few seconds, but it was seared into his memory. Seeing the charred mess left behind only fueled his desire to rebuild it.
Harry started his review of the auditory divinations in a somber mood. While in complete darkness, voices and sounds blasted at him from all directions. Many clipped conversations and random noises that offered little insight flew past him. However, he frowned as screaming and explosions started to sound out. Surrounded by screams and canon fire, he could almost imagine the island burning around him. Shaking his head, he forced himself to focus and managed to barely make out people yelling to throw the books into the lake.
Harry immediately stopped his review and quickly made his way to the lake. Throwing on a few charms, he dived straight into the water and formed large beam of light from his wand. When he reached the bottom, he began to carefully search the lake floor. However, after an hour of finding nothing, he resurfaced and climbed up to the shore. Dropping on the ground heavily, he sat while staring at the lake. For a moment, he let himself believe that the archeologists might have managed to save the books. However, thinking about it now, he realized that the World Government would have scoured the island after the attack and any books saved from the fire would have just been stolen or destroyed. He tried push down his disappointment, but he was beginning to think his desire to see Ohara rebuilt wasn't just a passing impulse.
Mustering up some hope that the marines might have missed some books, Harry tried to simply summon any within the lake. After a few moments, books came shooting out of the water, so he scrambled to his feet and quickly worked his magic to gently stack them aside. Walking around the lake, he attempted a few more summoning charms and by the time he circled back, he had some 500 books. It was a far cry from the library of the past, but he smiled wide as he worked to restore their water damage. After repairing the books, he stored them in his personal library. It was just an expanded trunk that he kept shrunken in his moleskin pouch, but they would remain safe inside. However, he didn't like the idea of taking the books for himself. Deciding that the books should remain in Ohara, he committed himself to at least building a new library.
Harry ended up spending two more months working on the island. He laid down a complex enchantment to protect the island, using a fascinating piece of magic his mentor discovered in a desert oasis. The oasis was enchanted to call out to those in need of water and if the need was great enough, they would feel a gut instinct to head in its direction. Harry combined it with an intent-based enchantment so the island would call out to those in need of the library, but it would not reveal itself to those with ill intentions towards Ohara. He powered the enchantment with the life force of the new tree. The tree wasn't as grand as the Tree of Knowledge, but it was still an impressive sight. Plus, it was near indestructible with all the enchantments Harry weaved into it.
Too build the new library, Harry started by expanding the space inside of the tree until it was twice as large as the original library. Using magic, he grew the tables, shelves, and stairs from the tree itself. He crafted four levels to the library and connected them by four spiraling staircases in each corner. The bookshelves were charmed to maintain optimal conditions, so even if an accidental fire occurred, the books would be safe. All of the enchantments were tied to the life force of the tree so they would last as long as the tree itself lived.
Harry restored the basement as well, but kept it disconnected from the rest of the library. From the sealed room, he took one of the log-poses, and he stored the fruit that brought him to Ohara alongside the fruit already inside. After preserving everything as he did in the library above, he resealed the room.
Harry had learned that the fruits were generally known as "devil fruits." Eating the fruit could give a person a myriad of different abilities, but they would forever be powerless in the sea. The fruit that brought him to Ohara was likely eaten by the man that appeared from the wormhole. It must have given him command over wormholes, dimensions, or something similar, and it apparently reformed nearby after he died. Harry had entertained the thought of eating the fruit himself, but he wasn't sure how it would react to his magic. The texts in the sealed room warned against eating two devil fruits. His magic might react as an already existing devil fruit, and he would die.
Having finished restoring the island, Harry stood outside of the tree and smiled sadly. There was no work left for him on Ohara and his endless bag of food was finally running low. After all the work he put into Ohara, it was beginning to feel like home. Despite his hesitance to leave, he knew it was time. He didn't have a map of the local area, but he knew there was an island far west of Ohara and was planning to head in that direction. He hoped to find something closer along the way but wasn't too worried about having to make the full journey.
After packing up his house and moving everything back into the magical tent, he did a sweep of the island, checking that all the protections were in place and functioning as they should. Finding no issues, he sighed before taking off into the sky. As he circled the tree, he let out a shrill scream. The tree seemed to wave goodbye as the wind blew through its leaves. After giving the island a final look, he headed off into the distance.
Harry thought finding an island would be easy and even if he couldn't find one quickly, he knew swifts could fly for months, so he wasn't worried. Turns out, flying for a month straight was unbearable. The only thing he ate for the past month were insects, and he was exhausted from only sleeping in short naps. He finally found reprieve after coming across a large rock formation jutting out of the ocean and quickly set up his tent atop it. It took three days of normal food before he shook off the craving for bugs.
Currently, Harry was pacing around the rock as he assessed his situation. He had a good month of non-insect food left in his bag, mostly fish he had summoned from the ocean, and he could pull purified water out of any source, so he wasn't worried about supplies. However, he spent the last six months completely alone and it was beginning to eat at his sanity. Working on the island had served as a good distraction, but there was nothing to distract him atop a rock at sea. Being trapped with just his thoughts, he found himself reflecting on his life and choices. Regret filled him as he thought about drifting apart from Ron and Hermione. The pressure he had been under made him fear disappointing them, but he should have known they just wanted him to be happy. He desperately wanted to reconnect with them, but he wasn't sure if he would ever find a way home.
His feelings about ending up in this world were complicated. There was a large part of him that was excited about it, a new world without grand expectations. And he felt connected to Ohara in a way he hadn't felt since Hogwarts. However, he didn't want to abandon his friends and didn't want them to think he died in some Japanese village. While wishing he could just talk to them, he paused in his pacing and dropped his face into his hands with a groan. He hadn't even considered trying to send a message. It should be much easier than trying to transport himself home, and he could at least let them know he wasn't dead. He was embarrassed for only thinking of it now, but he comforted with the fact that he spent the last few months trying not to think about home at all.
Opening his bag, Harry pulled out an old compact mirror and flipped it open. He didn't expect it to work and after a few minutes of trying different people, he put it away and began to pace again as he thought of other possibilities. Although he didn't much like the idea of portkeying himself across worlds, a message may be fine. However, he had no idea if it was safe to be near something ported across worlds. It might cause an unstable wormhole like the one that wiped out the Japanese village. Furthermore, the portkey would have to go both ways and it might activate while someone was holding it. He could accidentally kill someone. As another idea hit him, he stopped pacing and flicked out his wand while thinking of happy thoughts. Harry said, "I've been trapped in another world for five months, expecto patronum. Go to Hermione."
A glowing white stag burst from his wand. It stood looking around as if searching for something for a moment before it flashed bright enough to force Harry to avert his eyes and vanished. He blinked few times as his vision cleared and told himself that it wasn't what he thought. That was exactly how a patronus reacted when directed towards someone dead. The Order discovered the Bones had been killed during the first war that way. As he reassured himself that it only failed because he was in a different world, he began to pace again. He considered calling a house elf, but he didn't actually know of any. After Kreacher died, he didn't feel the need to get another.
Stopping suddenly, Harry realized he did know of another elf, but he hadn't spoken to her since his fourth year at Hogwarts. He yelled out, "Winky!" After waiting a few moments with no response, his shoulders slumped. He thought that one might actually work. No one knew where house elves came from, so it became a popular theory that they traveled from another dimension. He couldn't help but fantasize about dimension travelling elves coming to save him… or rather, deliver his mail.
As he headed back to the tent, resigned to hitting his books for other communication spells, a loud pop sounded out from behind. Whipping around, his jaw fell. Sitting on the ground, looking completely confused was Winky. She was wearing a little uniform, a black dress with the Hogwarts emblem across the front. She peered around as she stood up slowly and carefully scooted to the edge of the rock to peek over the edge. She immediately jumped back and shook her head violently while repeating, "Winky does not like heights."
"Oh hell," Harry groaned out. "Winky! Come into the tent please."
Winky stared at Harry for a moment before she darted into the tent faster than he could blink. Shaking his head, he followed her inside to find she was standing with her hands on her hips and staring at him like a mother prepared to scold her child. Deciding to head her off before he got an eat full, he quickly said, "Winky, I am very sorry for calling you to such a tall place, I forgot about your fear of heights, I promise not to do it again."
Winky appeared mostly appeased as she relaxed her stance and asked, "Why are you calling Winky, Harry Potter sir."
Harry sat down in a chair and motioned for her to sit as well. She just stared at him, confused, so he sighed, but answered her question, "I was transported to a different world. I had no way of contacting the magical world, but I hoped a house elf could find me. Did you notice that you're in a different world?"
She looked thoughtful before replying, "Winky didn't notice anything different. Winky thinks this is the same world, but very far away."
Harry considered her answer for a moment. Perhaps he was on another planet and house elves were capable of interstellar apparation. Although, it may be that they simply experienced the world in a different fashion than Wizards and Witches. Their magic might make moving between two worlds so easy that it just felt like one world to them. Regardless, he needed her help, "Winky, you're capable of moving between Hogwarts and here, correct?"
She nodded, but said, "Winky is able to come back, but only if you call. Moving this far would be dangerous without your call as a guide, Winky is bound to Hogwarts, so Winky is able to get back easily.
"That's wonderful," Harry replied before hesitating a moment and asking, "Do you think you would be able to take me back to Hogwarts?"
"Winky isn't sure, but Winky thinks it would be very dangerous for a wizard," she replied.
Harry was both disappointed and relieved. Regardless, he smiled at her and asked, "Would you be willing to help me out by delivering some letters for me from time to time?"
Unexpectedly, she frowned and shook her head, "Winky is working for Hogwarts now, Winky only came because Winky thought you had Hogwarts business."
Harry scratched his head, a little embarrassed by her reply. He asked, "Well, would you be willing to work for me instead?"
She looked around his tent and said, "You don't need much help besides delivering letters. What would Winky do?"
Harry didn't expect this to be so difficult. Standing up, he asked her to follow him out and apparated back to Ohara. He noticed it was much easier than normal, but pushed the thought aside as he focused on Winky. While giving her a tour of the island, he explained his long-term plans and how she could help. Her eyes sparkled when she saw the town and she gleefully muttered, "An entire town to clean, all to Winky's self!"
Figuring that house elves would always be a mystery to him, he just shook his head and smiled at her enthusiasm. They returned to the rock after finishing the tour and the conversation got interesting again when it came to her payment. Expecting her to fight tooth and nail against receiving any payment, he was blindsided when she began extorting him for alcohol.
"Winky, what will you even do with 300 bottles of butterbeer a month?" He asked exasperatedly.
"Winky be drinking it, Harry Potter sir," she stated plainly
Groaning, he said, "Look, Winky, I don't even have butterbeer. How about I give you gold and when you go back to the magical world, you can buy anything you want."
She was shaking her head before he even finished speaking, "They aren't selling to Winky anymore. Winky is cut off."
Jaw hanging open, Harry just stared at her, dumbfounded. He had been so impressed to see Winky doing better than the last time he saw her. She was far from the depressed drunk elf he remembered. However, it seems she never lost her taste for alcohol. Dobby was a madman, Kreacher was a blood purist, and Winky is an alcoholic. Accepting that he just had bad luck with house elves, he gave up.
"Alright Winky," Harry started. "I have a bottle of firewhisky in my bag. The amount of alcohol in one bottle is a thousand times that of a single butter beer. I will give you one bottle for your first three months working for me and some gold for anything else you might need. Later, I will try to find a local brew to pay you with."
Winky aggressively nodded her head, "Yes, Winky is okay with that. They don't let Winky drink firewhisky after the fire incident."
Harry did his best to pretend she didn't say that last bit and began to write letters to Minerva, Hermione, Ron, Luna, and his mentor. He explained his situation to each of them and told them that if they ever needed to reach him, to call for Winky, making sure to explain that she would not be able to return there without them calling her after she severed her bond with Hogwarts. After binding the letters together, grabbing a list of supplies, and a bottle of firewhisky, he placed them all into a space expanded bag. Passing the bag to Winky, he said, "Alright Winky, I will call for you again when I find land and we can establish the bond. After you deliver those letters and pick up the supplies, you may stay at Hogwarts or with Hermione until I call you."
Winky nodded and popped away. Harry was just about to enter his tent again when a bright light flashed into existence behind him. Spinning around, he threw up a shield and watched as the light began to fade. His eyes widened and then a smile began forming on his face. He recognized the pale white otter that appeared. The otter opened its mouth and Hermione's voice blasted out, "Harry James Potter, explain yourself!"
Harry smiled brightly, feeling immensely relieved to hear her voice. Shooting off another stag, he told her to call for Winky while hoping she didn't kill him when she realized he was paying Winky in booze. Well, he was paying her at least…
Feeling reinvigorated and ready to take off in search for an island again, he packed up his tent before taking off into the sky. As he flew, he wondered if patronus messages could actually reach the dead.
Two weeks later, he finally spotted land.