Disclaimer: I don't own anything coming from Harry Potter or Ranma ½. They belong to JK Rowling and Rumiko Takahashi respectively.
Magic and Martial Arts: Year One
Prologue- Where to live
"You don't mean... you can't mean the people... the people who live here?" cried a stern looking woman. "Dumbledore... you can't! I've been watching them all day. You couldn't find two people who are less like us... and they've got this son... I saw him kicking his mother all the way up the street, screaming for sweets. Harry Potter, come and live here?"
"I do indeed, Minerva. And I have my reasons," an elderly man replied in a soft, calming voice.
The stern looking woman had been chiding the older man for a couple of minutes now. They were standing in front of house number 4 on a street called Privet Drive. Now, this in and of itself may not have been strange, but as it was, they were arguing in the middle of the night, and it seemed that all of the street lights were dimmed, making it impossible for anybody to see this strange couple.
The woman was a rather severe-looking woman. She had square framed glasses, making her face look even more intimidating. She also had her hair drawn into a tight bun and was wearing an emerald green cloak. All in all, she had the look of a person who did not belong in this kind of simple, idealistic neighborhood.
Now if it were possible, the elderly man stuck out even more than his companion. He was tall, thin, and very old – at least, judging by the silver of his hair and beard, which were both long enough to tuck into his belt. He was wearing long robes, a purple cloak that swept the ground, and high-heeled, buckled boots. His blue eyes were light, bright, and sparkling behind half-moon spectacles and his nose was very long and crooked.
These two could never really be called normal. Minerva McGonagall and Albus Dumbledore were magic folk... a witch and a wizard respectively. Wand waving, evil, ugly people with unnatural powers that allow them to turn us into something like a pig and have us for dinner. Okay, well maybe not that kind of wizards, but they do have magic powers and wave wands, and by the sounds of things, that was enough to make the people living at Number 4 Privet Drive to consider them evil.
The two were discussing the recent events of the wizarding world; the defeat of the man named Lord Voldemort, or to everyone else except Dumbledore, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. It seems a person named Harry Potter had defeated the most powerful and evil dark lord of the century, a person who was feared by all. People feared him so much they couldn't so much even utter his name, hence the long title. Lord Voldemort had been a ruthless wizard who had cut down any who had dared crossed his path... but that was before his demise on Halloween. On Halloween, Harry Potter, who now needed a place to live, had brought him down and the witch and wizard were discussing this very issue.
As the couple discussed the situation, a slight rumbling sound broke the peaceful silence around Privet Drive. As the couple looked up, a huge motorcycle fell from the sky and landed in front of them.
"Hagrid," Dumbledore said, sounding relieved. "At last..."
Now the motorcycle was huge, I mean it could probably fit three average size men and still have room, but it was nothing compared to the man that was driving it. Hagrid, as Dumbledore had called him, could easily dwarf the biggest man you have ever seen. He was at least twice as tall as the average man and almost 5 times as large. He looked wild, too, with his long tangles of bushy black hair and beard. His hands were the size of trashcan lids and his feet could be compared with baby dolphins with his leather boots on. What made him even more intimidating was that he was mostly all muscle.
"No, sir... house was almost destroyed, but I got 'im out alright before the Muggles started swarmin' 'round. Lit'le tyke fell asleep as we was flyin' over Bristol," Hagrid commented.
What Hagrid was talking about was the baby in his arms. You see Harry Potter was just an infant, an infant, who was only a year old, had managed to destroy the Dark Lord. A near impossible feat for a fully-grown witch or wizard, but somehow the young child had managed what no one else could. The only evidence that the child bore after the encounter was a strange scar on his forehead... a scar in the form of a lightning bolt. Aside from the physical reminder of the incident that the child would bare to the end of his days, he would also be forced to live without his parents – as they had not survived the encounter when He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named had appeared. Thus bringing us back to current times; Harry is now in front of the house of his only living relatives, his Aunt Petunia and her husband Vernon Dursley. Number 4 Privet Drive.
"But I c-c-can't stand it... Lily an' James dead... an' poor little Harry off ter live with Muggles..." Hagrid wailed, oblivious to the fact that it was the dead of night in a small neighbourhood.
If you haven't guessed muggles is what wizard folk call non-magic people. To us, they must seem rather strange indeed...
Dumbledore gently placed the sleeping child on the doorstep of his aunt and uncle and proceed to pull out to a letter to explain the situation to Harry's relatives.
"Good Luck, Harry" Dumbledore murmured and walked off then, disappearing with a soft pop when he reached the corner. Minerva looked to Hagrid once he had vanished, and then she, too, disappeared with a small pop. With one last sniffle that he wiped on his giant sleeve, Hagrid mounted the motorcycle once again and took off into the dark night sky just as the streetlights came back on.
The next morning would be quite an affair for Privet Drive, because as soon as Mrs. Dursley opened the front door to put out the milk bottles, her ear-piercing scream would reach throughout the whole neighborhood.
"Vernon! Come quick!" Mrs. Dursley shouted.
A slight tremor could be felt as the large figure of Mr. Dursley came running down the stairs to see what has cause his wife to be distressed.
"What is it, my daring Petunia?" a disgruntled Mr. Dursley asked. It appeared he had been still asleep until the loud shrill of his wife woke him up.
"What, I don't se-" Mr. Dursley suddenly stopped short when he looked down and saw a bundle of blankets containing a black haired, green eyed baby boy on his doorstep.
The Dursleys were totally befuddled on why there would be a baby on the doorstep. It just wasn't a proper thing to do, leaving a baby on the doorstep of someone's house. All of a sudden, the sound of a second baby could be heard crying out.
"Duddydums!" a frantic Mrs. Dursley shouted out before she ran upstairs to sooth her own baby, Dudley.
While this was happening, Vernon was studying the bundle on his doorstep. Although no one would ever call him a curious man, no one could deny that he liked to know just what he was dealing with. The infant had woken up at his aunt's scream, but had yet to make a sound – even a little whimper – and it seemed he was very curious about who the stick lady with a squeaker of a voice and the first walking manatee was. After studying the baby for a bit Vernon noticed an envelope sticking out of his blanket. He grabbed it, slightly unnerved by the strangely quite child. On the cover of the envelope was a name. Harry Potter.
'Dudley is always making noise; bet you he is going to learn how to talk faster than all the other children! Hmm... wonder what's wrong with this boy... he hasn't even made a little peep. Must be one of those mentally challenged babies.' Vernon thought to himself.
After opening and reading the letter itself, all but ignoring the infant in front of him, Vernon yelled for his wife. The whole neighbourhood was awake by now anyways, so it didn't really matter by this stage if he shouted too.
"Petunia read this, you won't believe it!"
"What?" Once she had come back downstairs and out onto the porch, she snatched the letter from his beefy hands and scanned it quickly. The color drained from her face as she paused to read it more carefully. "We can't have a freak in this house, what if he taints little Diddykins with his freakishness?" Mrs. Dursley hissed in an undertone to her husband.
"Well, we really can't do much about it now. With your morning wake up call, most of the neighbors have seen this... this thing that those freaks dropped off on our door step!"
"You can't just blame this on me! You've been shouting too! But I don't want that... that thing in this house! Think about our little Duddydums!"
"I know, I know... we'll think of something."
"I know what we can do!" Mrs. Dursley exclaimed suddenly. "What about your cousin, Vernon? The one that lives in Japan, what was his name again... Gre.. Ge. Genma something or another, Why don't we give this thing to him?"
"Saotome? That's not a bad idea, and knowing my cousin, if we pay him enough he will take this freak, no questions asked! It's brilliant, my darling Petunia!"
"I know, I know. I am just like that you know, always coming up with brilliant ideas," Mrs. Dursley replied with no amount of modesty at all.
"I will call up Genma, right away!"
Half way across the world, somewhere in Tokyo
Bring! A telephone rang out in the old style Japanese house. It was a two-story house, with sliding doors and wooden floors. The interior itself was masterfully done. It resembled a traditional samurai home, with walls decorated with ceremonial blades, pictures depicting battles, scrolls, and other numerous ornaments coming from the mid and late 1800's. The house itself was placed in a huge lot; it had a courtyard with a wall separating their property from the sidewalk. Also to the side of the house was a dojo for the practicing swordsman and martial artist.
"Moshi moshi!" answered a young woman.
The young woman in question was a rather formal looking person, with her finely pressed kimono that had very intricate, hand-sown designs covering it. She had red hair and rather soft features, but if you were to look closely you could see an underlying power within her. All in all, people would consider her a very beautiful woman. And you can tell by her clothes she was also a woman who could get whatever she wanted. She also held a very well concealed blade on her back, covered loosely in silk. The blade itself was very elegant, probably a family honor blade. This young woman was Nodoka, wife to Vernon's Cousin, Genma Saotome.
Genma Saotome himself was a fairly large balding man with rough features, almost panda like you could say. Essentially, he looked almost like Vernon, only was in a bit better shape. Unlike his counterpart wife, Genma was the epitome of laziness; the man couldn't do anything remotely positive that didn't involve sake or martial arts. Also his manners and tact would make even a dog hurl. He was, however, a man of the arts - Martial Arts, that is. He practiced the Saotome branch of Anything Goes Martial Arts, a style that incorporates all the different styles in the world into one. Anything Goes is special because of its knowledge of countless styles, and because of this it makes it very adaptable, allowing one to incorporate his or her opponent's style into their own and use it against them. Genma was the master of the Saotome branch, which specialized in aerial combat over ground fighting.
"Yes this is the Saotome residence. May I ask who is calling?" Nodoka asked. 'English? Wonder why they don't just speak Japanese' thought Nodoka as she listen to the man introduce himself to her.
"Vernon! How nice to hear from you! How are you doing?" the young woman replied excitedly. "Yes, everything is fine here, why did you call? Usually you don't call due to the cost... what has happened?"
"Oh, a baby named Harry Potter you say, and you don't have enough room and can't afford another resident in your house? And you want to see if we can take care of the little one? Of course we can! He would be good company for Ranma! Could you hold one moment? Let me get Genma since he is your relative, and you can discuss it with him," Nodoka said, and after putting down the phone called for her husband.
"What is it No-chan?" asked a rather large and bald man in a white gi.
"You're cousin is on the phone"
"What does he want?"
"He has a problem, he's saying he doesn't have enough money or room to support his nephew and he is asking if we could take the child in."
"What!" Genma screamed in response. 'Vernon not have enough money and room? Impossible, he got half of the family business; he should be rolling in money...' Genma thought to himself. "One second, I will be right there!"
Genma came flying in though the door and started talking to his cousin.
"Hello? Vernon good to hear from you, what is it that I hear about you having a nephew that you can't afford?"
"Is that so?"
"But why us? Well, that is true, I am taking Ranma on a trip soon. Yes, I am sure I can do something about his... condition, it really is no problem. But you do know that taking care of another child is quite a lot of money..."
"Well, I am sure we will have to pay for food and shelter not to mention clothes..."
"Whoa that's quite an offer... I mean that's quite a lot for the little tyke. What? No, no, no, I am sure we can take him in, especially if you are willing to depart with such a valuable... commodity."
"You've got a deal, we'll meet you by the airport tomorrow morning. Bye." Genma quickly hung up the phone and turned to his wife, who was looking anxiously at him.
"Looks like we have another little one coming in..." As Genma said this Nodoka hugged him and squealed happily, cutting him off. Once he was free again, he continued in a more subdued voice. "But Vernon asked that he come with Ranma and I on the training trip I've planned for Ranma."
At this Nodoka exploded. "Training trip? What do you mean, training trip? He's only one year old, for Kami's sake! I think Ranma's too young for your training trips, but I'm letting him go... but how do you think Harry's going to be able to manage it?" Nodoka shouted at Genma who was backing up, keeping his eyes not on his wife, but on the sword on her back that was glinting out from under the silk covering suddenly.
"But Vernon said that he didn't want his nephew to be weak, he wanted his nephew to be a man among men just like Ranma will be." Genma explained tentatively, sweating heavily. He knew that he really never was a good liar.
Fortunately for him, however, Nodoka wasn't looking at his face, but pacing back and forth in front of him, muttering under her breath various insults about him, his cousin, and the entire baka clan that she had married into. After a while of this, she calmed down and finally agreed to have Harry go, but only under the same conditions as Ranma. He would have to become a man among men, or Genma and the boys would have to perform the ritual suicide of seppuku to regain their honor. She also added that if anything happened to Harry, then Genma would be a goner, as he wasn't even their child.
After this Nodoka called her son Ranma down. Ranma was an energetic six-year-old little kid with black hair tied into a ponytail, and deep gray blue eyes that seem to pierce your soul. Ranma had already started practicing martial arts, and was currently well accomplished compared to some masters of other styles.
"Ranma-kun, guess what?" Nodoka asked her son.
"What mommy?" Ranma asked enthusiastically
"You're going to have a little brother! We're going to pick him up tomorrow morning!"
"Really? Wow, I hope he's fun to play with! But mommy, where did my baby brother come from?"
"Umm..." Nodoka thought quickly before answering. "Why, they come from airports, because that's where the stork drops them off."
"Really? Was that how I came here, too?"
"Yes, Ranma that's how you came here too. And you know what? Your brother is going to be going with you on your training trip with daddy."
"Yay! It's going to be so fun with him to play with!"
Nodoka looked at her son thinking of how much she will miss him when he is gone. "Yep, but you got to promise me one thing, okay?"
"Okay mommy, what is that?"
"That you will protect your little brother at all costs, alright?"
"Okay mommy, I promise!"
"That's a good boy," Nodoka said with tears in her eyes.
The next morning, they met Vernon at the airport to take little Harry off his hands. Ranma and Nodoka had fawned all over Harry, causing him to giggle. They absolutely loved the infant the minute they saw him. While Nodoka and Ranma were playing with Harry, Vernon and Genma were talking quietly with each other discussing what would be happening. After awhile Nodoka and Ramma came back with Harry to see what Genma had been talking about and what he thought of the child. Nodoka and Ranma seemed very excited to have Harry there, and feeling seemed mutual because, for the first time since his confrontation with the Dark Lord, Harry was smiling.