This is unbeta-ed at the moment. Forgive me! I don't have MS-Word.
Rowling's verse is her own. I own nothing but the continuation of the story from the Chapter called Bran.
Sorry about the delays, I had some personal problems, alot to be exact. I am already at work on the next chapter and amusingly enough have ideas for years 2 and 4. Three I am still working on ideas for.
"You want us to do what?" Ron asked his brothers. The identical Cheshire grins upon Fred and George's faces were scary at times. He couldn't believe what they were saying, they couldn't want them to do that. Nothing but that, that was breaking rules, not that they minded, but that would get them caught.
"We want you..." one started.
"to steal the Sorting Hat..."
"and deposit it onto Snape's head..."
"during breakfast. If you succeed..."
"we'll teach you the fine art of..."
Hermione just looked at them, wanting to cut out their throats with a silent Cutting Curse. The spell would work but it would be too messy, plus they were Ron's family. "Have you done this before?" she cut them off before they could go on their ever confusing ping pong match of words.
"It was our initation to Hogwarts Pranksters Association. We are proud card-carrying..."
"... diabolical plotting..."
"... prankster's of Hoggie of the Warts!" Fred or George looked at the other and just groaned, the ending of that sentence was just horrible. Gred and Forge looked at them, smiling evilly which set Hermione into reservations about it.
"Bolt, I don't think this should be attempted without thinking it through." Hermione cautioned the group.
"Agreed" Ron spoke up. "This is highly risky but I think it can be done."
The twins spoke up again telling them to let them know by next week or they wouldn't get help in learning how to prank Dean or anyone else.
The rest of the day had past quick until they gotten back to the private room with Isis. She greeted each one of them in turn asking how their day was before Neville started in on what he had thought about the entire day.
"Since you are my friends, I need to mention something to all of you." Neville started up, "Have a seat, this could take me awhile to get out. I've got the courage to do it so I need to get this off my chest so I can breath a little."
All sat while Hermione voiced all their opinions at once, "You already know you won't be judged so we will listen first before jumping to any assumptions." Both of the silent parties just nodded, going along with what she had said.
"And I thank you for that but I don't want to be seen as an emotional cripple or weakling because of this." Neville started up again, showing that he could bash himself quite well.
Ron interceded before he could get too far though, "Bran, you have shown you have some serious power in Charms, Transfiguration, but most of all you help US in Herbology, a subject we were sorely lacking in. You are an equal part of this group. If we could find other partners for the subjects the group doesn't have an advantage in we'd dominate the top positions."
Hermione nodded while Harry spoke up, "Working on that but still, I don't like being around alot of people this quickly. It has only been a couple weeks into school." After that was said they looked back to Neville waiting for what he was going to say.
"I don't like with my parents. They were sent to St. Mungo's for catatonia after damage for the Crucatius curse. I live with my Gran who has always compared me to my Dad. I hope this isn't going to get me kicked out of the group." Neville was close to whining at the end. He had been dreading this the entired day but they had entrusted him enough to truly belong in the group.
"Bran, sit down. We knew this talk was coming but we weren't expecting it this fast. Who wants to go first?" The question Harry threw up in the air wasn't directed at Neville but at the other two.
"I'll go first." Hermione ventured. She stood up as Neville sat down on the chair with a sign of confusion on his face. "Bran, we had picked up that you were having a bad homelife. We are all here for the same reason but different circumstances. You decided to reach out to us and tell us why you have a bad homelife. It is time for us to tell you our stories then. As you know, I am Muggleborn. What makes it worse is my parents admit I am a mistake that should not have happened. They yell, they scream through walls at me and each other. I was plagued with quite a bit of guilt enough to drive my self to harming myself." At that, she pushed up the sleeves on each of her arms showing the old scars that were slowing fading away. "This was my release, my way of feeling til the Burn and Bolt took away my knife. It was bad for me. Your problem is your confidence, being compared to someone else, and your clumsiness because of trying too hard." At this she sat down and spoke, "Who's next?"
Neville was shocked to see the least, this girl was amazing and yet, she hid behind a mask of calm collectedness that would put some middle year Slytherins to shame. It was shocking to say the least. But what did she mean by each of them having a horrible home life?
Ron was reserved but they could hear him say, "Me." Standing up, he began pacing in front of the fireplace. "As you all know, my family were Gryffindors until me. I would've been one as well if this past summer didn't happen. My brother, the prefect, first started hanging out with me, to be exact." He spat brother and prefect out almost like they were scalding his tonuge. "Percy was stuck up and somewhat poofish but I still thought he was cool. Until he started to fondle me. " Neville gasped at this and he was hushed quickly by the other two. They knew he needed to say this quickly or Ron would lose the nerve to say it for quite a while. "He then ordered me to suck him off until a couple weeks before school began, he started buggering me." Ron was almost in a rage at this point and pacing much faster. "I felt so ashamed, I didn't want to be seen as weak if I went to Mum and Dad about this, and I felt that I could've prevented this from happening some how. I started keeping more and more to myself and it didn't help the twins were trying to cheer me up. I thought they were picking on me but they were doing the only thing they knew how to do, joke and have fun. I hung around Ginny more, halfway wanting to protect her from Percy. She was female but I didn't want to touch anyone because of this. I still don't know what to do about him at times!"
Ron sat back down letting Neville stew over the words that were just spoken. Then spoke "So that explains his passes at some people in the house." They just looked at him strangely. "It is true! He tried to make a few passes at some of the boys, some were my year before others put him into line. Some people were saying they were going to report him if he didn't behave. All we would have to do is get him caught and he'd get prefect taken away."
Ron countered it, "He's too sneaky. He knows rules better than we do. It's a thought though. Harry, you are up." Neville just looked at Harry in shock, what did the World's Savior have to say other than he was orphaned?
Harry stood up shrugged off his robes and his shirt while explaining just like Hermione's his needed to be seen. With a quick "Finite" all three saw the scars across his chest, on his arms, and his back. Neville was shocked. Who would treat the Savior of the World in this way? "This was done by my uncle mainly. He deemed I was a freak that needed to be punished. I was a servant to them. One mistake would cost me whatever food they would give me today whether it was one dish left unwashed or forgetting to do a minor chore. Even not waking up on time. More mistakes throughout the day, would add the number of lashings onto what I got at the end of the night with either a whip, a riding crop, or a leather belt with the buckle attached! I was never sent to the hospital to get any bones repaired so I knew when a bone broke that I had to rebreak it to at least get it to be aligned properly. I couldn't make the grades to go to private schools because that would get me whipped daily because I was smarter then they own piggy flesh and blood. I was thought of as a criminal by neighbors because of them yet their own son was the one who would run around harrassing old ladies, painting cars or walls, throwing firecrackers at cats." Neville was whitefaced at this. "I am enrolled in St. Brutus for Incurably Criminal Boys while I am attending Hogwarts, so they can maintain the delusion they are sparing the sweets and using the rod frequently." At that, Harry sat down. Tears were almost in his face at the end of that.
Neville just looked at them in the eye and just said something all would remember for a long time, "What would I give to prevent this from happening to anyone else ever again."
All answers were the same, "Far too much, Far too much."
They turned in that night to their own nightmares but in the end, Isis watched them all congregate back into the living room to fall asleep upon the couch.
"Sleep well my young ones, you will change the world," Isis hissed. She watched them all, each had a past similar to the others but distinctly different. Each wanted to prove themselves and grow stronger. Each wanted to become better, a dream that in her eyes made her worthy to oversee them to it.
As they awoke the next day, they changed off turns with the bathrooms. Neville was thinking on the problem the twins had brought to them. How would they steal the Sorting Hat to give to the twins for a prank?
"Brigid, did the twins say that we couldn't have help in their task?" he asked.
She was quick to respond with a 'no'.
"Isn't there a charm for getting what we want? I mean as children, one of us must've summoned a toy to us at one time. Too bad we can't have Peeves lift it since he can go anywhere in the school but we can't control him." Neville rambled on about ideas. He didn't see Hermione's eyes light up at the two wonderful ideas that came into play.
"Bran, you are a genius!"
Nev whirled around with a dumbfounded expression on his face." I'm what?"
"A genius! Both ideas will work. There is such a thing as a summoning charm, I overheard Ravenclaw fourth years talking about it. It was to be discussed later on in the next month or two but they were starting on it earlier. I could approach them and ask them about it. That could work. Or... Peeves... I wonder..."
Now Nev's interest was perked, "Peeves, what about him? We all know he can't be controlled except by the Slytherin--- oh." He just sat there gazing in stupidity, the answer was in front of his face and he hadn't seen it.
"Baron Alexander may be able to assist us in this. He may, we need to talk to him about this." This through Nevile for another loop.
"Baron Alexander Lucian Renard VI!" exclaimed Hermioned, "otherwise known as..."
"The Bloody Baron." the smug ghost said while entering the room. "My child, you have need of me?"
"Would you ask Peeves to steal an item of the Headmaster's for us for a prank?" Hermione spoke quickly.
"My lady Brigid, you are up to mischief. That alone would get Peeves interested but I need him here to see if he could. Do you permit?" At Hermione's nod, he yelled "Peeves! Get your poltergeist hind-end over here now!" Then the Baron looked around the room again to see that it had a new occupant, "And who is this, isn't he a Gryffindor?"
Hermione replied quickly, "He's one of our group now on. Neville Longbottom otherwise known as Bran, our Herbology expert." Neville blushed at this while Hermione continued on. "Bran, meet Baron Alexander Lucian Renard VI, the Bloody Baron, the Head Ghost of Slytherin." All Nev could do was offer a quick bow, surprises were thrown up left an right in the past couple of days that made him question the world around him. It was just wierd altogether.
The Baron spoke up once again formatlities were out of the way, "What item of Dumbledore's are you wishing to borrow?"
"The Sorting Hat. The Weasley Twins said this was an initation into being a prankster. They had to do it as well."
"My dear, you've been had!"
Both of them yelled out at this "What!" Both were seething, this would've gotten them into trouble if they had been caught.
"Here comes Peeves right now, do you still want him to steal it? He'll want something in return." the Baron asked, trying to hurry their decision up. Hermione just nodded, the beginnnings of the plan was coming into her head. Peeves barrelled into the room his his trademark raspberries and naughty songs until the Baron settled him down.
The others had come out of the bathrooms and noticed the two ethereal people before walking away. They were not ready to deal with extra people just yet.
"Peeves, how would you like to play a prank on the Weasley Twins?" Hermione started.
The ghost just grinned, mishief was always fun. Putting one over on the twins was better than fun. "Peevsie is already listening to the firstie, what you need Peevsie to do?"
"Steal the Sorting Hat from the Headmaster."
"Oooh... Peevsie likes this firstie."
"What are you wanting in return?"
"Peeves wants to be sorted."
"Then this is what we'll do..."
When Harry and Ron asked them what they were planning later, Neville just popped up with, "Just wait and see, wait and see. Brigid is brilliant, but scary." The day past quickly for them with their classes until it came to lunch time. All had gathered with the Bloody Baron waiting to see what Brigid had up her sleeve.
Here came Peeves through the air with a screaming Filch right after him up to the Head Table. The Sorting Hat was in his hands when it spoke in an amplified voice, "Attention, students and faculty. I have been requested to give the sorting of Peeves." The hall fell silent while the teachers just glowered at Peeves, this was a new all-time high for him. The Hat came over his head and yelled, "SLYTHERIN!" before Peeves laughed merrily before running back out.
"Thank ye twins for the idea!" he screamed as Filtch trailed him with a fishing net out the Great Hall doors. Ron and Harry just sat there staring at Hermione like she had grown another head. She didn't, no way. Ripples of laughter came tenatively to all the hall until they burst out laughing. McGonagall had got up from the table to grab the twins by the ear and pull them out into the hall before giving them a scolding for playing with things that didn't belong to them.
Dumbledore on the other hand got up to the podium, "Well, that was unexpected but let's all welcome the new student into Slytherin." A burst of applause sounded off the walls as Peeves came back in the Hall, sans the Hat, to bow before rushing off again.
After the Trio and Neville had gotten out of the Hall, they all asked her how. Her reply was the twins had stood them up with a prank of their own and she said they deserved one of their own to backfire. All agreed and decided that they would handle pranking Thomas on their own terms. Neville pointed out he at least was able to get into the tower due to him being a Gryffindor. All three Slytherins grinned at that. They knew Neville was going to do well in their group. They scattered to the next classes for them.
Later it was revealed on a schedule the next game would be coming up in a couple days on a Thursday. Harry's response was "Go figure, I knew he was working me harder than normal but I forgot to check dates on when the game was." Classes were decent until the day of the game where Snape canceled any detentions he had just to make sure noone had an excuse for not being there. Harry just thought he didn't want to lose horribly to the Gryffies because his Seeker was in detention.
The game started off weak for their opponents which gave the Slytherin team every advatange to use a bludger to scare someone off course. Harry laughed merrily at it while still keeping watch for the Snitch. He still couldn't see it but he knew it would pop up when it felt like it. About five minutes of random patrolling and a 50 point lead to Slytherin when he spotted the Snitch. The biased Lee Jordan didn't like saying anyone was losing to Slytherin funny but him arguing with a teacher was even more hilarious. It gave the Slytherins the edge because they knew at least where the Quaffle was at all times if it wasn't in their hands.
There! He could see it, Harry tore off after the Snitch in a steep dive while the other Seeker looked on as if it were a feint. He couldn't believe he was so lucky! Then it happened, his broom started bucking. And didn't stop until it had bucked him off when he wasn't close enough to the ground.
Oh fuck, were the last words coming into his mouth as something lodged into his mouth as the sickening crunch of broken bones and creeping darkness overwhelmed him.
Some have asked me when Snape is truly going to get a clue about Harry at least. Next chapter, Next chapter. Please feel free to send advice. I need a beta as well.