Chapter 10 - Introducing Your Mass Murderer
"He looks and smells good, Kitten, keep him if you want, but you might have to share." Harry nodded vigorously, before sliding down Riddick to the ground. He latched onto one of the furyan's hands and pulled him with him as he went towards Draco and the light.
"Hey Draco, this is Riddick." Harry stepped back, only slightly, so that Draco could see everything.
"Wow." Draco gaped as he looked up at the powerfully built male in front of him. Riddick smirked, while Harry grinned delightedly.
"He said I can keep you." Harry chirped, startling Draco as he grabbed his hand as well as Riddick's. "Come on, we have to go inside now."
It was an amusing sight, seeing a small raven-haired boy pulling along both a Malfoy and a large, muscled adult; well it would have been if anyone that had seen it had the courage to laugh.
The trio stopped in the entrance hall, right in front of Professor McGonagall.
"Mr Malfoy, if you could sit down at your table." She gazed sternly at Draco.
"Yes, Professor." Draco winked at Harry before heading into the Great Hall, while Harry pouted at his retreating back. Harry turned to McGonagall.
"I think you'll find me on the sorting list, Professor." Harry stated, he didn't know why, but something was telling him that it was true. McGonagall looked at him suspiciously.
"Name?" She lifted an eyebrow in query.
"Harry Potter." A look of shock crossed her face, and her lips thinned. Checking the list, she realised he was right.
"Are you sure you want to do this , Mr Potter? " she asked, sorry that she might lose one of her favourite students from her house.
"It's not really my decision." Harry shrugged with a smile. "But you'll still be one of my favourite teachers, Professor." She smiled slightly.
"Feel free to drop by my office anytime, Mr Potter." Harry grinned.
"Will do, Professor." McGonagall turned to Riddick. "Oh, this is Riddick," Harry added in a whisper that Riddick easily heard, "just Riddick, he gets a bit miffed being called anything else, especially mister." And in a louder voice, he continued, "he's my instructor in defence, as well as my partner." His voice shrank slightly at the end, as his face flushed and he fidgeted.
"I see." The smile had disappeared, and there seemed to be a slight pink tinge across her cheeks. "Wait here a moment."
Harry leaned against Riddick's solid form as he watched the students entering the Great Hall, glancing curiously at them now and then. McGonagall came striding back quite quickly and stopped in front of them.
"Mr Potter, you will be re-sorted after all the first years." Harry nodded in understanding. "And, Riddick, there's a chair available for you at the head table."
"I'm staying with the kitten, and I'm not sitting anywhere." McGonagall bristled and was about to say something in return until she saw Harry's full power puppy eyes.
"Fine. You can come in with the first years for the sorting , both of you." She moved to a door at the side of the hall and opened it to reveal the waiting first years. "Form a line." She called, before leading the nervous students, Harry and Riddick through the Great Hall's main doors.
Harry could feel the stares of many students directed at Riddick and himself from all of the house tables, as well as the staff. Harry allowed himself a small smirk as he made his way to where the line of students to be sorted were huddled together, he could see the confusion on Dumbledore's face even though he tried to hide it. Snape was looking at him curiously, as though he wasn't sure who he was, but when their eyes met, Snape sneered, although it lacked much of the usual menace and he continued to stare at him thoughtfully.
As usual, Harry's concentration drifted during the Sorting Ceremony, and only returned when McGonagall cleared her throat and called his name clearly. Gasps issued from the stunned students as he casually strode to the Sorting Hat, and he heard some starting to shout indignantly before the hat was placed upon his head. Just like the last time, the hat fell to below his eyes and he was surrounded by darkness, although this time it was comforting.
Hello again, Mr Potter.
~Uh, hi. Not to seem rude or anything but why am I being resorted?~
She wished it. You have been in the wrong house for far too long.
~She? Who's she?~
You will find out later. Now, let's see how your mind has changed.
Harry could feel the Sorting Hat sifting through his memories and thoughts, but felt safe enough to let it delve as deep as it wanted. He was sure that once it found what it needed, it would resurface - and so it did.
~So?~ Harry prompted.
Only one thing seems to have changed, Mr Potter, and that is your acceptance with where you rightfully belong, where before you were reluctant. The hat seemed to shuffle slightly on Harry's head before it opened it's mouth and shouted 'Slytherin!' into the gossiping crowd of students.
The hall fell silent, but as Harry rose up, removing the Sorting Hat from atop his head, the noise came back threefold. Wincing slightly at the assault on his enhanced hearing, he handed the Sorting Hat to Professor McGonagall.
"Meet with your new head of house in the morning, Potter, to sort out your timetable." Harry nodded and walked steadily to the Slytherin table where Draco had saved him a seat.
Most of the house's occupants were staring at him, either in loathing or curiosity, especially at the show of camaraderie between him and Draco. Harry raised an eyebrow at them and many turned back to the head table, which Harry also decided to do. He could not wait to see how the headmaster would introduce Riddick. He thought for a moment that he should get up and do it himself, but decided against; this way was much more interesting.
Professor Dumbledore finally stood up then, putting an end to the clamour by raising his hands, and the students seemed to only then notice the imposing figure standing silently at the front of the Great Hall.
"This year," Dumbledore lifted his hand, indicating the dark-clad man, "we have the pleasure of having a guest in the castle." He paused fro a second. "Let me introduce, Riddick. He is here for…diplomatic reasons, so it's best if no one bothers him when they see him around the castle." Riddick shifted, then stalked over to the wall next to the Slytherin table; leaning against it and crossing his arms as he surveyed the room. Dumbledore coughed lightly, calling the attention of the pupils back to the front. "Now, let's tuck in."
The food appeared on the golden plates, causing the majority to forget the events proceeding it in favour of the feast.
Harry, sitting as he was with his back to the wall, felt Riddick approach behind him. He lifted a plate already filled with the food the furyan preferred above his head. A hand rested lightly on his head; ruffling his hair, as the weight of the plate decreased. Harry put the plate back down, taking a few pieces of the meat for himself before glancing down the table.
Draco had an eyebrow raised, obviously intrigued at the comfortable display between them, but otherwise said nothing. Others, however, were openly pointing in their direction, whispering furiously to their neighbours and sometimes members of the other houses.
Sighing, Harry ate a few more pieces, as well as a few vegetables, before moving the plate to the side for Riddick, and sitting back, watching and waiting.
Once the feast was over and Dumbledore had spouted off the usual rules and warnings, he spread his arms wide and called for everyone's attention one last time.
"As you have probably already noticed, I have not introduced to you, your new Defence Against the Dark Arts Professor. This is because he is currently indisposed and is unable to join us until after the Christmas period. Until then, the classes will be divided between three teachers; Professor Snape has agreed to teach the sixth and seventh years, while the fourth and fifth years will be taught by yours truly. The teacher for the first, second and third years has yet to consent, but I'm sure the decision will be made before the first class." Harry looked at him sharply and saw that the blue eyes were twinkling in his direction; his fists clenched tightly under the table.
"Now that, that is all dealt with, off to bed with you." the headmaster clapped his hands together and the doors to the Great Hall swung open. However, before any of the students had even risen from their seats, a small, black fluffy creature dashed inside, a larger, multi-coloured creature followed as quickly as it could, although it's attempts were hindered by it's wailing.
As the black creature changed direction, now heading at top speed towards the Slytherin table, Harry understood what had happened. He stood up, eyes turning to him, and he moved to meet the little fluffy missileas it launched itself at his chest.
"Hello Yami, I missed you too." The little fox's tails wagged happily as he yipped, licking Harry's cheek before curling around his neck like a scarf. The other creature was soon revealed to be Dobby, the house-elf, as he stopped at Harry's feet.
"I'm sorry, Harry Potter, sir. I tried to stop him, but he escaped when I wasn't looking." The elf wrang his long-fingered hands.
"It's okay, Dobby. I missed him too. Why don't you go and help the Hogwarts house-elves for a while? Unless you have something else you want to do?"
"That would be nice, Harry Potter, sir. I've been wanting to see Winky again, sir." Harry waved a hand dismissively and Dobby disappeared with a pop.
Yami yawned by his ear, his eyes drooping closed. Harry scratched his head lightly between the ears, and the fox let out a sort of purr.
"Let's go to bed, hmm." With a look towards Riddick; who had already started to follow him, and to Draco; who got up gracefully, he walked out of the Great Hall with his head held high.
As soon as Harry was out of view of the Great Hall, he slumped tiredly against a wall, careful of the slumbering fox at his neck. He covered his mouth as a yawn broke through, waiting for Draco and Riddick to both catch him up.
With the arrival of the two males, Harry started to tiredly shuffle his way to their chambers. However, he did not get very far as a loud buzzing started inside his head, making him stop and hold two fingers to each temple. He stepped backward, and suddenly the buzzing ceased. As this pattern seemed to continue everytime he stepped in any direction but one, Harry decided to go where there was no buzzing, completely ignoring the presence of Riddick and Draco, who silently followed him.
Harry continued on doggedly, until he reached a dead end. He stopped and stared stupidly at the wall in front of him.
"There's supposed to be a door here." He muttered sullenly. Something urged him to look closer, and sure enough, he found a small, finger-sized hole. Using his index finger, he pulled the door open wide before moving into the small, empty room beyond. Then, with a quiet snap, the door sealed itself behind him, not allowing Draco and Riddick to enter.
Harry, who had jumped at the small noise, had his back to the rest of the room, when a voice spoke.
"Welcome Harry Potter." He span around, nearly losing his balance, in his tired unco-ordination. A shimmering, translucent woman stood in front of him.
"Wh-who are you?" Harry stammered.
"I am all you see." She replied cryptically. He thought for a moment.
"You're Hogwarts?" Harry asked, incredulous, but she only nodded imperiously, as if it was obvious. "How?"
"This image is created using my imagination and a small, enclosed space where enough magic has coalesced to make this form corporeal."
"Yes, but how?" She smiled in amusement.
"I have always been here. What did you think caused the staircases to move, the hallways to change, the room of requirement?" She raised a translucent eyebrow.
"Um, I never really thought about it, I just understood that, that was how it was." Harry shrugged, then asked curiously. "So why do you do all those things?"
"I get bored." She stated simply. "But you caught my attention. It's not everyday I find a Founder's heir in my halls, now I've found three in one single being." Harry smiled sheepishly.
"So what does that mean?"
"It measn I get to have more fun." She replied happily. Harry blinked. "But for now, you have to sleep, off you go." An invisible force pushed him gently from the room after opening the door, and straight into Riddick. He looked up hopefully.
"Yes, Kitten." Riddick gestured to Draco, and he helped support Harry as Riddick led them to their rooms. The trip took no time at all and as soon as Draco had gone through the process to gain entry, they were inside.
Draco was led by an overenthusiastic Dobby to the room riddickused to occupy, his trunk and other belongings already having been transferred.
Harry, on the other hand, was carried by Riddick into the room and bed they shared, too tired to do anything else but cuddle up to the larger form as soon as they were under the covers. A wave of magic washed over him and he recognised it as Dobby's before he fell blissfully into oblivion.