AN: To readers old and new and to those that have waited nearly 4 years for this chapter, I sincerely apologize for the delay. I hope that I can continue and at least finish year/book 1.
"Why are you two so tired?" Hermione asked as they settled down for a quick breakfast before they had to leave.
"We were up pretty late," Harry answered, covering his mouth as he yawned.
"It would've only been you if you hadn't woke me up, but I'm happy you did," Luna smiled.
Harry looked around, checking that no one was listening on their conversation, before explaining, "I found this really cool mirror that shows you what you really want. I went and woke up Luna to show her and I figured you'd get mad if I woke you up and clued you in to the fact we'd all be out of bed after hours and might get in trouble so I just let you sleep."
"I would've liked to see that, but then we would've out of bed after hours..." Hermione mused.
"If we hurry, we might be able to find it again before we have to leave," Harry offered, smiling.
The three of them quickly finished off the remains of their breakfast and left the Great Hall, having to rely on Harry's slightly backwards sense of direction of the school to eventually find the unused classroom where the Mirror was.
"That trip seemed shorter than the last one, we didn't even go past the Astronomy tower," Luna recalled.
"Well excuse me for getting whacked in the head," Harry melodramatically stated.
"What's that got to do with anything?" Hermione asked, dumbfounded.
"I've been hit in the head a few times, I think that messed up my sense of direction," Harry explained, rubbing the back of his head, "I wonder if too much of getting whacked in the head is a bad thing?"
"Of course it is! You could get severe brain damage!" Hermione warned.
"Um... 'Mione, if you haven't noticed by now, you should know this little fact about me: I am pretty messed up in the head, so yeah, I most likely do have brain damage," the blue haired Ravenclaw smirked as he opened the door for his friends, "Ladies first."
"Quite the gentleman," Luna joked.
"My aunts try to make me be one, my uncles are very happy with me engaging in burping contests with them... except for one but he's a coldhearted person who wouldn't know a joke if it bit him on his bald head!" Harry laughed as he closed the door behind the three of them.
"It's not nice to insult your family," Hermione pointed out
"It's a common thing that happens," Harry shrugged, "I think it's because most of my family has clashing personalities and they tend to overreact to stuff; like this one time a few years back, around Christmas during a party we were having, my Aunt Selena punched out my Uncle Eddie when he... put his hands where they shouldn't, but then I think someone spiked the eggnog and Uncle Eddie is a lightweight..."
Hermione just stared at Harry in blank shock as the boy trailed off in thought, speaking to himself of his Uncle's inability to hold his liquor.
Luna simply smiled to herself, she had long ago noticed that she and Harry had very similar ways of thinking: strongly starting off in one subject before quickly drifting off onto tangents that would eventually end in topics completely unrelated to what the conversation had started with. Bringing attention back to the task at hand, she saw that luckily the mirror was still there, "It hasn't been moved yet, that's good."
"Guess the old man is waiting until there's less people in the castle," Harry suggested, being brought back to the topic and also remembering that Hermione had no idea what they were talking about, "We sorta got busted last night for being out of bed..."
"By Professor Dumbledore," Luna added.
"And you didn't get expelled or at the very least detention?!" Hermione exclaimed.
"Maybe he figured that since we were leaving today, to give us a break?" Luna suggested, putting her finger to her chin as she pondered the thought.
"Just look in the mirror, I don't want to be stuck here for Christmas," Harry muttered, nudging Hermione towards the object.
Hermione let out a sigh of exasperation, finally deciding that Harry's eclectic way of acting would never change especially if the rest of his family did not seem to mind it and that she should just give in and just adjust to whatever craziness would happen from now on. Turning her attention to the large mirror in front of her, she let out a small noise of surprise.
"What do you see?" Luna asked, standing close to her friend.
"I have top marks in everything, and I'm Head Girl!" the brunette answered, grinning.
"You need to relax more if the thing you want most is to be better than everyone else!" Harry joked, putting a hand on his friend's shoulder.
Hermione glanced at Harry, and his hand on her shoulder, then at Luna before turning back to the mirror and was surprised at what she saw now: instead of being surrounded by books and papers with perfect marks, beside her were her friends: Harry and Luna's reflections were the same as they actually were and they were joined by Neville and, surprisingly, Draco who was standing more towards the edge of the frame.
"Did it change?" Luna questioned, seeing her friend's expression.
"Yeah..." Hermione smiled, looking at her friends.
"So what do you see?" Harry repeated.
"Y-you two... and the rest of the friends I've made here," the bookworm answered, slightly embarrassed.
"That's really sweet," Luna commented as Harry tightly hugged the brunette.
"Uh... Harry, has anyone mentioned that you're a bit too affectionate?" Hermione questioned, prying the boy off her.
"A little... I blame my aunts since they like hugging me so much," Harry shrugged, "Something about me being very cute..."
"They have a point there," Luna offhandedly commented.
"We'd better get going if we don't want to miss the train," Hermione interrupted, pointing out that they were on a schedule.
"We better book it then," Harry responded before restating the saying for Luna, "Let's just hurry... I keep forgetting that some phrases don't really translate too well."
"I find them amusing," Luna smiled as the trio made their way from the room and eventually found their way out of the castle.
As they made their way to the carriages that would take them to the station, since the lake was frozen over, Harry stopped in his tracks.
"What in the world is that?" Harry wondered out loud, seeing the faint outline of something hooked up to the carriages.
"What're you talking about?" Hermione questioned.
"I'm seeing the shape of... something hooked up to the carriages, can't you see anything?" Harry tried to point it out to his friend.
"I don't see anything but empty space," Hermione responded, wondering if her friend's potential brain damage was actually true instead of him joking.
"I see them," Luna spoke up, "But I don't know what they are, I bet if we ask Hagrid when we get back he'd know."
"Sounds like a plan," Harry agreed as he cast one last glance at the vague shape before deciding to reach out and see if it was solid, which to his surprise it was. He patted the side of the creature or whatever is was and made a conclusion, "I think it's a horse or something..."
"It's got the body shape of one, except for the wings," Luna added, moving Harry's hand to where the wing meet the rest of the creature's body.
"I kind of wish I could really see it," Harry muttered as one hand felt the shape of the wing as the other stayed still, it was during this brief exploration that he felt a breath of air on the side of his face and the creature nudging him with its head.
"We're holding up the carriage, we don't want to miss the train," Hermione reminded, wondering what Luna was seeing but not brave enough to feel out the creature as Harry was doing.
"Right right," Harry muttered, helping the two girls into the carriage before turning around and noticing someone, "What do you want?"
"I... uh... I think we really got off to a bad start," Ron muttered, looking at the ground, "C-can we try again?"
"Why so nervous?" Harry teased, adding an edge to his voice to intimidate the Gryffindor.
"I don't want to get kicked below the belt..." Ron admitted.
"I only did that to that one guy because he tried to jinx Jin!" Harry defended, "It was a perfectly justifiable reason!"
"That reason is why most guys try as hard as possible to stay out of your kicking range," Hermione pointed out, poking her head out of one of the carriage windows.
"But they forget how fast you can run so that range is a lot bigger than they think," Luna added, her head hanging out the other window.
"...why are you two listening in on my conversation?" Harry asked.
"To see if you're about to start beating up Ron," Luna brightly answered.
"Are you going to stop me if I do?" Harry challenged.
"Only if it looks like you're about to kill him," Hermione responded, deciding to play up Harry's well known love of violence to further intimidate Ron.
"I have such wonderful friends!" Harry laughed while Ron was quickly second guessing his decision to try and befriend the insane boy again.
"I think we're scaring him," Luna smiled.
"Let's just see it as his initiation or hazing!" Harry cheerfully remarked before quietly muttering, "If only I had some hair dye left..."
"What's that?" Ron asked, not quite hearing what the Ravenclaw had said.
"Nothing," Harry waved it off, "Okay, for now you're on a temporary friend; I'll judge you when I'm back from the break and see if you're a decent enough person to be friends with."
"Thanks... I think..." Ron muttered before going back inside the castle.
Harry climbed into the carriage before remarking, "How long do you think he'll stick around for before he decides I'm completely insane and runs?"
"A month," Luna guessed, before they glanced at Hermione.
"...a week," she bet, smiling at the amused look on Harry's face.
"Now you're getting into the spirit of things!" he laughed as the carriage made it's way to the station.
Hermione rolled her eyes in amusement as they passed the gates, through the town of Hogsmeade and arrived at the station, "How're you going to test him?"
"I dunno, but I'm sure I can think up something crazy to see how he reacts," Harry shrugged, before lapsing into silence as he tried to make plans.
The quiet continued for a surprisingly long amount of time, up until the three of them had boarded the Hogwarts Express and found a compartment to themselves, when it was broken by Harry singing a rather deranged sounding tune under his breath.
"Why are you singing that song?" Hermione asked, distracting Harry, "It's a bit... weird..."
"Huh? Oh, I just really like the song and it's perfect since it's Christmas time," the boy answered before starting the song over but singing the words under his breath, "Grandmagotrunoverbyareindeer..."
By the time the trio had arrived at King's Cross, Harry had taught Luna the song with marginal success, mainly because he could not remember all of the lyrics off the top of his head but the boy promised to finish teaching the blonde when they came back after the break.
The trio parted ways, Harry waiting on the muggle side of the gate when he saw someone he had hoped to never see again. Glaring at his blood relative with his 'planning to kill you horribly and painfully' look, he muttered, "What're you doing here?"
"Picking you up," Vernon grumbled, obviously not happy with the situation.
"I doubt you're doing this willingly," Harry retorted, "Who put you up to this?"
"Your bloody Headmaster," the large man answered.
"I'm not going back with you!" Harry spat, mentally planning how to get back at the old man for trying to control him again before looking past the large man, which was a difficult task to accomplish, and starting to grin widely at who he saw coming.
"What're you smiling about?" Vernon looked down at the boy.
"One of my uncles, who wouldn't like you messing with me and there's the fact he's a wizard and a werewolf..."
Remus approached the two, his eyes had started to take on the yellowish coloration associated with his werewolf form and he was grinning, showing off a few extra pointed teeth, "No one messes with a regular wolf's pups, do they?"
"I forgot that the full moon would be happening during the break," Harry grinned, glancing at how scared his less liked uncle was.
"Is he the one that made your life hell?" Remus asked, a hint of a growl to his voice.
The large man paled in the face of not only a full grown wizard but a dangerous creature as well who was obviously displeased with him. There was a drawn out moment of silence before he turned and ran.
Harry laughed as his quickly retreating uncle before turning to the werewolf, "How've you been?"
"Fairly well considering I seem to be the only sane person in your extended family," Remus chuckled.
"Aunt Selena seems pretty sane to me but then again with all those cats she makes me sort of see her as a prettier version of Mrs. Figg, the crazy cat lady that lived near the Dursleys," Harry shrugged.
"...you come up with some very strange comparisons," the man muttered before glancing around, "Where's Jin?"
"I told you guys he was staying behind, remember?" the young criminal rolled his eyes.
Remus thought for a moment before sighing, "I vaguely recall that conversation, I think I didn't pay too much attention because Harley tried to cook..."
"What's the damage report?" Harry asked, it never ceased to amaze him how his mother's cooking abilities, or lack thereof, could cause so much destruction in a short amount of time.
"Two cabinets and three pots, along with half a chair," the man sighed.
"Huh, less than usual," the Ravenclaw shrugged, "Anything else interesting happen that you couldn't tell me in letters or with the mirror?"
"Lou had another litter of cubs, another girl and boy... but the girl killed the boy so it's only her now," Remus informed.
"That's brutal... you guys name her yet?"
"Your parents are thinking about naming her Cain," Remus then had to elaborate on the meaning when Harry just stared blankly at him, "From the biblical story of brother's Cain and Abel where Cain, the older of the two, killed Abel."
"...I didn't know that mum or dad read the Bible."
"They don't, at least I don't believe Jo-your dad has. It was referenced when something with similar circumstances happened not too long before Lou gave birth," Remus answered.
"One sibling murdered the other?" Harry guessed to which Remus confirmed, "What was so special about this murder?"
"I believe something about the murder weapon being something unusual but your dad changed the channel to some cartoons," Remus answered.
"Sometimes I think he has a shorter attention span than I do," Harry laughed, "By the way, why aren't you saying dad's name?"
"A precaution, it might not be a good idea to broadcast who you call 'dad'," the werewolf responded."
"Oh... where're we going to use the Floo?" Harry asked, quickly switching to another topic.
"We'll head to Diagon Alley and use the fireplace at the Leaky Cauldron," Remus informed.
"Can we pick up some candy or something before we head home, I promised Richie I'd get some for him to show him the weird stuff Wizards come up with," Harry asked.
"Sure," Remus smiled, messing up Harry's hair in affection.
"Will you guys stop doing that?!"
"See you guys later!" Harry called out to his family, stopping briefly to scratch Bud and Lou behind their ears, giving Tonik a quick pat on the head, and avoiding Cain since the young cub had yet to learn not to bite him.
"Don't forget your jacket, hun!" Harley reminded as she carried a box that had 'Handle with Care' emblazoned on the side to Joker's workroom.
Harry grabbed his jacket, a reversible one that Two-Face had gotten him as a Christmas gift last year which was a forest green on one side and the other was a purple dark enough it could be confused for black. The young wizard had a feeling that the dual man had the item specially made but he kept forgetting to ask so he had yet to find out if this was true or not.
Slipping on the jacket, green side out, Harry raced out the door and down the block to where he had told Dick to meet him. Upon seeing his friend, Harry took a flying leap to tackle/hug him.
"Good to see you too," Dick choked out as Harry tightly hugged him, "How was school?"
"It was okay, aside from some really random stuff happening including a troll somehow getting into the school... and I don't mean the ones that hide under bridges, this troll was huge!" Harry explained, stretching his arms up towards they sky at he described the creature, "It must've been ten feet tall at least!"
"That's... um, I don't know how to respond to that," Dick honestly answered.
Harry simply shrugged and grinned, "What do you want to do today? It's a bit cold to hit the park unless you want to."
"There's a movie theater that's playing something I think you'll like, want to go watch it?" Dick offered.
"Sounds good to me, is Alfred or Bruce coming with us?"
"Bruce is busy at the company and Alfred is dropping us off while he takes care of a couple errands so it'll be just the two of us watching," the blue eyed boy informed.
"They're letting us do something alone... have they been replaced by stupid alien clones?" Harry asked with a straight face, causing Dick to laugh.
As the two climbed into the car, Harry handed a small wrapped box to Alfred, "Don't give it to Richie until Christmas."
"Don't worry, Master Harry," Alfred smiled through the rear view mirror.
"Why do you call me that?" the wizard asked.
"A thing of habit transferred over from Masters Bruce and Dick," the butler answered as the two boys sat down and buckled up.
"I still think it's weird," the young wizard muttered.
"What's in the box?" Dick asked.
"It's your present, no peeking!" Harry grinned, before handing over a small box to his friend, "You can open that and eat it now, though, it's some wizard candy."
"...chocolate frogs?" the blue eyed boy stared at the item in his hand.
"They taste okay, but most of my classmates are really interested in the cards," the blue haired boy informed, "Open it up and see who you got."
Dick popped off the top of the container and was surprised when the sweet hopped out of the box, Harry catching the treat before it got too far and handed to his friend who simply stared at it, "I don't think I can eat that now that I've seen it move..."
"It's not really alive, just a spell," Harry proceeded to snap the frog in half to show that it was completely made out of chocolate and nothing else, "See, no frog guts or anything!"
"That's really not helping," Dick muttered before looking at the card he had gotten, "So this guy is the headmaster of your school?"
The wizard looked at what his friend held and stopped himself from scowling, "Yeah he is."
Dick flipped over the card to read the information on the back, "Consideredbymanythegreatestwizardofmoderntimes,DumbledoreisparticularlyfamousforhisdefeatofthedarkwizardGindelwaldin1945,forthediscoveryofthetwelveusesofdragon'sblood,andhisworkonalchemywithhispartner,NicolasFlamel.ProfessorDumbledoreenjoyschambermusicandtenpinbowling. Why would they add that weird bit at the end? I mean it's a random piece of trivia but I guess they needed to fill out space."
"What did you say that last name was?" Harry asked as he coughed, he had accidentally swallowed a chunk of the chocolate frog when he heard the last name mentioned.
"What, Nicolas Flamel? You heard of him before?" the slightly older boy questioned.
"Sorta, someone mentioned him once and I was trying to look him up and never found anything... can't believe that I only had to look on the back of a chocolate frog card!" Harry muttered, annoyed with how much time he and his friends had wasted trying to find anything on that man.
Dick noticed Harry's sudden dark mood and kept quiet for the rest of the trip, knowing that it would vanish as quickly as it came when they would arrive at their destination, the green eyed boy's temperament always had a tendency to change without warning. True to his prediction, Harry brightened up as the movie theater came into view and they were dropped off with some money for tickets and snacks, the teen manning the box office barely glanced at them when they pointed out the PG-13 movie as the one they were going to watch, he knew that if the boys had lived in Gotham long enough that nothing in the movie could possibly scare them.
The line for the concessions was ridiculously long and with their movie starting soon, there would not be enough time to get anything... if they just stood on line.
"You get some seats, I'll get the snacks," Harry spoke, shoving his friend towards the theater.
Dick stumbled slightly before regaining his footing, "The line's too long, even with ten minutes of previews we'd miss the start of the movie."
"A movie's not a movie without popcorn and soda," Harry adamantly stated, once again pushing his companion towards the theater, "I'll get the stuff before the previews are over, I promise."
Dick just sighed and nodded his head, walking away.
Once his friend was out of sight, Harry put his plan into motion: quickly scanning over the line, he spotted one man who looked extremely irritated at the long wait even though he was near the front. Grinning, Harry hid behind a cardboard stand advertising another movie and pulled out a handful of pennies from his pocket. Taking careful aim, the young criminal threw the coin with pinpoint accuracy and hit the man on one of his legs. Harry smiled that even though the man did not seriously react, he could tell that it would not take much to make the man boil over in rage. Taking another coin Harry hit the man in the shoulder, grinning as the man turned to glare at the person who was standing behind him before turning back forward, muttering darkly. The third coin hit right on the side of the man's head and achieved the desired effect: the man turned around and started to argue with the person who had been behind him the whole time before the two started to fight. As the brawl grew to include several other moviegoers, Harry took the distraction to cut to the front of the line and place his order. The girl in charge of the counter glanced towards the melee that was going on, and the security that was now involved in breaking it up, before getting Harry's food together and sending him on his way.
"What's going on back there?" Dick asked, looking back towards the door separating the theater from the lobby, as his friend sat next to him and handed over the snacks.
"Some guy blew a fuse and started beating people up... it made the line a lot shorter," the mischievous boy answered, eating some of his popcorn as the lights started to dim.
"And you had absolutely nothing to do with it?" Dick sarcastically responded, knowing Harry's habit of making things happen.
"Who, me?" Harry innocently replied, though he did not attempt to hide the grin on his face.
"You're impossible sometimes..." Dick sighed as the previews started up.
"That was a good movie," Harry remarked, eating the last of the popcorn before tossing the tub away, "I really liked the uncle, that trick he did with the light-bulb at the end was cool."
"I figured that you'd like it, with how weird you are," Dick laughed, playfully punching the other boy in the shoulder.
"Let's cut through here to get some ice cream before we meet up with Alfred," Harry pulled his friend through an alleyway.
"How can you want ice cream in this weather?" Dick asked, gesturing at the snow around their feet.
"Hogwarts is a lot colder than it is here, I think it's because there's no heating outside of fireplaces and stuff like that," Harry shrugged before his ears caught the sounds of a struggle, "Sounds like trouble."
"Let's check it out," Dick said before Harry could stop him from heading towards the sound.
The boys quietly made their way towards the sound and saw a young woman being pushed around by three guys, one holding a gun while another had a knife and the last was unarmed.
"Jokerz," Dick spoke distastefully under his breath, seeing the identifying colors the three were wearing.
Harry glanced at his friend before focusing on the group, listening in.
"You have my wallet, just leave me alone!" the girl pleaded.
"You don't have much in here," the unarmed mugger muttered, emptying the wallet of its contents, "But I think we can get more out of you..."
Harry growled under his breath as the man with the gun grabbed the woman and shoved her against a wall. The young wizard muttered angrily under his breath, "I'm going to regret this later."
Dick had scarcely heard Harry speak before the other boy ran forward and, with a surprisingly high jump, kicked the unarmed man in the head. Time seemed to stand still as the two remaining guys noticed their friend was now out cold and they were faced with a very angry kid.
"The fuck?!" the one holding the gun reacted before pointing his weapon at Harry, causing Dick to react by grabbing a random object off the ground and throwing it at him, causing the shot to go wild and instead of hitting Harry in the head hit him somewhere in the stomach.
Dick froze as he realized he may have just gotten his friend killed, if not from the initial shot, then from bleeding out if Harry did not get medical attention soon. His actions, coupled with the shock of what he had done, brought the two remain muggers attentions to him.
"Hey, you know who this kid is?" one of the muggers remarked, grabbing Dick by his jacket.
"What does it matter?" the other one answered.
"He's Bruce Wayne's kid; we could hold him for ransom and get loads of money!"
"You're nuts, man, stuff like that never works out!"
"Give it a shot at least," the first mugger pointed the gun at his head, "Be a good little brat and come along."
Harry growled in warning as he pushed himself up, "Leave him alone."
"You should've stayed down, you stupid kid," the second mugger grumbled as he walked towards Harry, pulling out a knife, "It'd be simpler with only one brat to deal with."
"Harry, run for it!" Dick yelled, hoping to save his friend and wondering how he had survived being shot.
"I don't abandon my friends," Harry stated before running forward and meeting the knife wielding thug head on.
Dick tried again to tell Harry he should just leave when the other boy quickly disarmed the large man and drove the knife into his stomach, pulling it out with a twist to cause further damage. As the man went down, Harry drew the blade across the guy's neck to make sure he would not get up again. The young wizard stared at his fallen foe before looking up and swiftly tossing the knife at the last remaining man, hitting his hand and causing him to drop the gun which Dick swiftly kicked out of the man's reach.
"Damn kid!" the man wrapped his free hand around Dick's throat and started to choke him, to convince Harry not to move.
"You're just making me madder," Harry intoned, green sparks dancing across his fingers as his hate towards the man hurting his friend grew.
"W-what're you doing?!" the mugger's grip started to slacken as he watched the sparks travel up Harry's hands and arms.
"Killing you," the young wizard stated, raising a hand as the green colored magic collected in his palm.
"H-hey, wait! Calm down, I didn't mean it!" the mugger pleaded, letting Dick go and starting to back away.
"If it had just been me, I'd let you go... but you pointed a gun at my friend's head, no one messes with my friends!" Harry yelled, his piercing gaze somehow intimidating the man enough to back up until he hit a wall and was trapped.
"Harry," Dick called out but any words of protest disappeared when he saw the strange glint in his friend's eyes.
"My friends are very precious to me, I won't let anything happen to one of them if there's anything I can do about it," Harry answered, keeping his eyes locked with his friend's as the energy shot forth over his friend's shoulder and striking the man.
Dick flinched as he heard the man fall; he looked over his shoulder to stare at the motionless body before looking back towards his friend, "H-Harry… what did you... you didn't need to..."
Harry just stared at the motionless body for a moment, the sparks of magic fading away as he touched the spot when he had apparently been shot before holding out his other hand to help his friend up. That was when Dick truly noticed the blood staining the other boy's sleeves, most likely from when he had killed the second thug with his own knife.
The two boys tense and quickly went on guard when a loud crack echoed through the alley, Harry raising his hand to try and replicate what he had just done to the now unmoving man but with little success other than a small spark on the tip of his index finger.
"Easy boys, we're not going to hurt you," the man who suddenly appeared held up his hands to show them he did not mean them any harm.
"Are you a wizard?" Harry quickly asked, putting himself between the man and his friend.
"Yes, I'm going to assume you are too?" he glanced down at the spark on Harry's hand and then at the scene around them, "Do you want to explain what happened?"
"I want to know your name first, I like to know who I'm talking to," the young wizard demanded.
The man carefully reached into his jacket to pull out a silver colored badge that bore a pair of crossed wands with a circle of runes around them, "I'm Investigator Lee with Gotham's branch of the North American Magical Bureau, I just need to ask some questions."
Bruce inwardly cringed at the sight of Harry, the blood on his clothes had dried but it was still a shocking image to see. The billionaire turned to Dick and saw the blood on him seemed to be primarily just on his hands and looked like it had been transferred onto him; he stared at his ward for a moment before asking, "What happened?"
"We came across some guys mugging a girl and Harry jumped in, he's pretty fast, and was able to knock out one guy right off the bat but that clued the others to him. Things got a bit hectic and before I knew it, Harry had been shot and a gun was pointed at me," Dick rambled, not noticing that Bruce stiffened at the mention of the weapon and hearing the Harry had been seemingly wounded, "Harry got up, I don't know how he survived, and he took on another one of the guys who had a knife. Harry got the knife away from him and... he stabbed the other guy with his own knife, and then Harry threw the knife at the remaining guy to get him to let go of me and drop his gun. Then he... he used his specialtalents to kill the last guy..."
One of the wizards walked up to Bruce, Harry in tow, "Afternoon, Mr. Wayne; though I wish the circumstances weren't so depressing..."
"Are you finished questioning Harry?" Bruce asked, glancing down at the boy who was uncharacteristically quiet.
"We are; the original victim of the mugging confirmed that the boys acted out of a need to help and self-defense," the wizard answered, glancing down at Harry who was just staring blankly at the ground, "We done a scan and wipe of her memories to ensure she does not recall any use of magic and also did a wipe of the one mugger who was still... alive."
"A memory wipe?" Bruce felt uneasy with how casual the fact of tampering with someone's memories was said.
"It's to ensure our secrecy, Mr. Wayne, if word got out about wizards... well in Gotham it wouldn't be too bad with everything else that goes on here, but normal people sometimes react badly to things that are strange, different, or unexplained," the man gave a slightly defeated smile, "The only reason neither your memory or that of your ward's has been changed is because Harry has vouched for you and will also pay the fee for revealing the existence of magic to you two and your butler."
"There's a fee?" Dick spoke up.
"We are a government too, we need money to run things and one way is to impose fees for the revelation of our kind to unrelated muggles," the man pulled out a pocket watch and glanced at it quickly, "I must go now, Mr. Wayne, there's paperwork that needs to be filled out for this and I must get started on it, good day."
Bruce motioned the two boys to get into the car before Alfred drove off. An uncomfortable silence reigned in the vehicle as Harry stared out the window and Dick glanced at his friend.
"Harry… you alright?" Dick quietly questioned.
After a few more seconds of silence, Harry muttered, "Ask what's really on your mind."
"How did you survive getting shot?" Dick asked, trying to avoid the real question.
Harry pulled out something from his pocket and held it up, "An uncle of mine gave me this coin a while back... I guess I had left it in my pocket and forgotten about it, but I was pretty lucky that it was there."
Dick saw that the force of the bullet had impacted the coin and deformed it so that whatever design that had been on it was unclear. The chances that the bullet would hit the coin dead on were unbelievably slim and if it had been a little off in any direction, most likely it would have only clipped the coin and ended up seriously injuring or possibly killing his friend, "That was lucky, a million to one chance I bet."
"What do you really want to ask me, Richie?" the purple haired boy spoke, staring down his friend.
Dick hesitated a moment before quietly speaking, "…why'd you feel you had to kill them?"
"They tried to kill me and take you hostage… maybe hurt you too," Harry answered, "This is a bad world, you know that, but here it seems a lot worse. I thought it was best to think the worse was going to happen so I acted so that it didn't."
"Still, just right out killing someone?"
"I wanted to keep you safe, you're my friend and-" the young wizard started.
"You look out for your friends," Dick completed as a silence reigned in the car for uncomfortable amount of time. Thinking of something that could snap his friend out of it, he offered, "Maybe Alfred will make us some cookies when we get to the house."
"Just drop me off at home, I don't feel like hanging out anymore today," Harry answered, going back to staring out the window of the car.
As they pulled up to Harry's home, Dick watched his friend silently get out and walk up the steps, "Call if you want to hang out before you have to go back, okay?"
Harry simply waved to his friend, without turning to face him, as he entered his house.
"Do you think he'll be okay?" Dick asked Bruce, staring at his guardian with a worried look.
"I don't know, people handle things differently," Bruce responded, wishing he could give a definite answer to his ward who went back to watching Harry's house as they drove away.
"What's the matter kiddo?" Joker asked, seeing the odd look on Harry's face before noticing the blood on him.
Harry stared at his father for a moment before answering, "I killed somebody today… two people, actually."
"Congratulations!" Joker exclaimed, scooping Harry up into a hug, both a bit surprised at his reaction, "How'd you feel afterward?"
"I felt… I felt… really… good…" Harry remarked as his father put him down, an odd smile creeping across his face and a manic glint appearing in his eyes, "I got a good idea on how to mess with Bats."
"Really, what's the plan?" Harley poked her head into the room, "Why are you covered in blood?"
"I'll explain it later," Harry muttered, picking at the dried blood, "What do you guys think about acting like the Grinch?"
"The one that steals Christmas?" Harley responded.
"Yep; that sound like fun to you guys?" Harry grinned.
"Sounds like a great idea!" Joker stood up.
"Good... let me clean up and change first," Harry responded as he exited the main room and headed to his own. He pulled off his stained shirt and tossed it onto his dresser to deal with later as he opened a hidden compartment towards the back of one of his drawers to extract his costume from its hiding place.
Changing into his costume, Harry paused and pulled the deformed coin out of his pocket. Staring at the item for a moment, he reached into the back of another drawer to pull out a small wooden box and opened it. Inside was a collection of random things: a monocle, a large scale from some reptile, what looked like a broken off metallic claw, and many other odd objects. Harry laid the coin inside, now covered in dried blood making it look as if it was covered in rust, before putting the box back into its hiding place and making sure that the compartment was well hidden again.
The young wizard quickly dressed in his villainous persona and was finishing up securing the belts of his straitjacket when he looked up, "I was wondering where you were."
"I promised Ivy to take care of her plants whenever she's in Arkham," Prank informed, "The fact I am one is the main reason for that."
"And it might also be since a few of Aunt Ivy's plants are meat eaters, a bunch of her plant sitters don't really come back..." Harry shrugged, exchanging his glasses for his goggles.
Prank shrugged in response, "...what's this I hear about you killing somebody?"
"Two people actually... a pair of muggers... it's kinda ironic since it was in self-defense," Harry humorlessly laughed as he slipped on his mask and glanced in the mirror to make sure that his hair was the correct shade of green.
"Were you hurt?"
"No, but I got mad when they threatened Richie..." Harry trailed off, knowing that Prank would understand what he meant.
"Sometimes I think you're worse than Harley in the protectiveness department, at least when it comes to Richie," Prank pointed out.
"You should see how I act around my new friends at Hogwarts," Harry muttered, "Remind me for the two of us to share memories, I want to know exactly what you've been doing here... especially what led up to that picture with you in makeup."
"Harl-mom, is very persuasive at times," Prank groused, and detecting the question answered, "I'm getting more into your shoes, referring to Harley as 'mom' as well. By the way, it seems there was an unintended side effect of either my creation or you using some of your magic on me."
"What's wrong?" Harry asked his plant double.
"I'm actually capable of magic," Prank revealed, smiling widely, "Imagine my surprise when I accidentally blew up something just because I was mad!"
"That is awesome!" Harry smiled, "You been able to do anything on purpose yet?"
"Not really, Remus figures I may need a wand to do more but it might be tricky to get into Visigoth Ave since I can't change my appearance," the plant explained, "Though I might have him get some books on wand making and see if I can figure something out."
"You know what would be cool? Have, like, a combination of tech and magic!" Harry offered before thinking, "Wait, is that even possible? At Hogwarts anything more advanced than a watch goes nuts..."
"I'll ask Remus about that or have him ask around," Prank shrugged, "You might want to make sure you're all ready to go, Joke-dad is getting impatient."
"...you still need to work on the whole relaxing thing a bit more," Harry joked, double checking his equipment before leaving his room.
"Everyone keeps saying that, it's getting very annoying..."
Harry laughed as he stood up, satisfied that everything seemed to be in working condition, "That's how I feel when people keep messing up my hair."
"Just get going," Prank groused, practically kicking Harry out of the room.
"Love you too," the young villain joked as he left, joining his parents in the living room and noting that Remus was not dressed up, "You're not coming along?"
"It's too close to the full moon, remember? I don't want to risk going a bit... too wild," the werewolf responded.
"Oh yeah, forgot about that," Harry muttered, "I'll cause a bit of extra mayhem for you, okay?"
"Just what I wanted for Christmas," Remus muttered as he messed up the boy's hair, much to his annoyance.
"Stealing Christmas? That's low, even for you," Robin remarked.
"I'm celebrating for me, I did something pretty special today," Harry informed, grinning widely behind his mask.
"You went to confessional?" Robin responded, feigning surprise.
Harry laughed, "I like that fact you have a sense of humor, Bird Boy, but no I killed for the first time today... and it felt so good!"
Robin flinched at the declaration but kept his cool, "So you've fallen that far? I sort of hope that despite everything, you could be helped."
"Robby, Robby," Harry shook his head in annoyance, "What do I have to do to make you understand? I am happy the way I am, the way I live! I would not want to give this, or my family, up for anything in the world?"
"You keep going like this, you'll end up just as bad as Joker!" Robin informed, reaching for his bo staff and hoping that the young villain was distracted enough from the fact.
"You say that as if it's a bad thing!" Harry retorted as he started laughing, unfortunately doing so gave Robin the opening he needed to knock him out.
"Still, stealing presents on Christmas? That is kinda low," one inmate muttered, moving his chess piece.
"Robin already said that to me," Harry retorted, using his bare foot to move a piece of his own, "But I'm not a total monster, I made sure that all the gifts would be given back."
"I wrote the addresses on all of them!" Harry laughed, scratching his nose with a toe.
"You're going to be popular when you're older," the inmate chuckled.
"For what exactly? The killing, the maiming, or my personality?" Harry smirked.
"For something else entirely, if you're that flexible in a few years," the inmate laughed at the young villain's absolutely confused look.
As Christmas rose over Gotham City, many of its residents were eagerly giving, receiving, and opening gifts, even the ones who had their presents stolen by the 'Clown Clan'. Even some of the villains of Gotham received gifts from someone who thought them as good in his eyes.
The one you gave me saved my life, I hope you'll like these.
P.S. They're really real
Two-Face set the note aside and opened the small but heavy box to see something glinting inside. Reaching in, he pulled out a handful of gold coins. He picked one up with his other hand and turned over several times to get a better look at it, "Kid's got good taste."
I hope this is a nice addition to what you already have.
It's a creature called a Diricawl, though you can still call it a dodo if you want.
Oswald Cobblepot, otherwise known as the Penguin, looked up from the note to gaze upon the bird that was his Christmas gift, "So the dodo was actually a magical creature? Huh, who knew... I wonder where that spare monocle of mine disappeared to?"
If you want more, we can arrange a trip
Edward Nygma let the note slip from his fingers as he took in the stacks of books that had appeared in his hideout, they were thoughtfully organized into categories. Looking over the books, Edward saw a mixture of things he knew and things he did not know, mainly books pertaining to magic and anything related to it.
I found him, he's part Kneazle (a magical cat) and I thought you might like him.
Selina arched an eyebrow at the misspelled name; she laughed to herself as she quickly figured out that Harry must have been the one to get her the gift but had wanted her to believe that it came from his 'henchman'.
Admittedly, there was something about the man that was interesting and he did not seem to truly fit for his role as Harry's underling or for crime in general and made her wonder why he was in that position in the first place. The only problem she could see about the two of them was for some reason her cats did not like being anywhere close to Remus, which seemed odd considering how well the man got along with the hyenas and seemed to be very accustomed to being around wildlife in general.
Shrugging her shoulders and deciding to think on it more later, she gazed at the cat that could have passed off for a regular tabby if one ignored the fact its' fur was slightly spotted and there seemed to be a bit more fur at the end of the tail, making it somewhat resemble a lions.
"You're a cutie," the woman smiled, holding out a hand to the creature to show that she was friendly.
The feline stared at her hand a moment before turning its' head and flicking its' tail, dismissing her.
"Not that friendly, are you?" Selena laughed.
AN: If you're wondering how Harry doesn't see the Thestral despite growing up around Joker, the answer is simple: up until his killing of the muggers, he hadn't fully seen death yet. He knows and hears it occurring but had not seen someone die in front of him since either Harley or Remus would distract him or have him somewhere else when that would occur.