Disclaimer: Naruto is the intellectual property of Masashi Kishimoto, Shueisha, and VIZ Media. The Harry Potter series is the intellectual property of JK Rowling; various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books, and Raincoast Books; and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made from this story, and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Author's Note: The first chapter of this story was a slightly belated birthday gift for Asuka Kureru, who asked for a crack Naruto/HP crossover. I don't think I achieved crack, but I did manage the crossover part. Sort of.
"An Ounce of Prevention" will not affect canon in either series -- that is, it takes place during the Naruto timeskip and before Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. All characters and props will end up in the right places and conditions for Naruto's return to Konoha and the Weasleys' 1992 trip to Diagon Alley.
Summary: During the timeskip, Sakura finds a very interesting diary among Tsunade's books and papers. Trouble ensues.
Alternate Epilogue: All Roads
Meanwhile, in the universe around the corner...
A puff of odorless smoke and a loud bang sent Ginny Weasley scrambling back from her bed, tripping over her open trunk and falling to the floor.
Someone rapped on her bedroom door. "Ginny? Are you hurt, dear?"
"No, Mum! I just dropped some books," Ginny called back.
"Well, keep packing. We don't want to miss the Hogwarts Express."
Ginny nodded absently, staring at her bed. The smoke had cleared, revealing a small book, bound in shabby black leather, lying haphazardly on top of her new schoolbooks. A sheet of Muggle paper was somehow fastened to its cover.
As Ginny tiptoed cautiously forward, the strange, illegible glyphs on the paper squirmed and rearranged, forming into English sentences in a strong yet feminine hand.
--Greetings,-- the note began. --This book contains a fragment of a human soul, and a memory imprint of the man who put it there. He created the imprint with the death of an innocent girl. The imprint wants to get out of the book. If you write in the book, he will write back. He will attempt to make you his friend, control your thoughts, and drain your life.
--We were unable to destroy the book, but we wish you better luck. The imprint calls himself Tom Puzzle/Mystery/Riddle. If you know his creator, avoid him. He is very dangerous.
--Please be careful.
Ginny stared at the book, deeply suspicious. Was this another of the twins' jokes? Or, worse, was it part of some twisty, evil plot against Harry? Who did this Spring Cherry person think she was, Apparating evil books into a stranger's bedroom without so much as a by-your-leave?
Well. There wasn't much she could do now -- Mum and Dad were far too distracted to pay any attention if she tried to show them the diary and ask for advice -- but she obviously couldn't just leave the book lying around where anybody might find it.
And come to think of it, what if it was an evil plot against Harry? What if she could figure it out and stop the villain all by herself? Would Harry notice her then? If she saved him, would he like her?
...If she was very careful, could she learn anything from the person in the diary, before he was able to drain her?
Slowly, Ginny picked up the diary and tore off the note.
She had a lot to think about.
AN: Thanks for reading, and please review! I'm particularly interested in knowing what parts of the story worked for you, what parts didn't, and why.
It's been 20,200 words (give or take) and not quite two years of work, but this time it's really the end. I had a lot of fun. I hope you all did too. :-)
List of proverbs and sayings:
1. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
2. When in Rome, do as the Romans do.
3. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
4. Birds of a feather flock together.
5. Assumptions make an ass out of you and me.
6. Too many cooks spoil the soup.
7. Time flies when you're having fun.
8. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.
9. Idle hands are the devil's playground.
10. Can't see the forest for the trees.
11. Never put off for tomorrow what you can do today.
12. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.
13. Don't judge a book by its cover.
14. Put your money where your mouth is.
15. Curiosity killed the cat; satisfaction brought it back.
16. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
17. A miss is as good as a mile.
18. He who laughs last, laughs best.
19. Once burned, twice shy.
20. Three can keep a secret if two of them are dead.
21. If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.
22. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
23. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
24. All roads lead to Rome.