I finally got a beta reader! Hopefully this chapter will be contain alot less mistakes.
Obviously I'm borrowing a characters and stuff from Rumiko Takahashi, and J K Rowling. I've also grabbed lyrics from some rather famous musicians... Any lyrics below are not mine.
The next few hours Ranma spent listening to Harry's experiences over the summer. Mostly it sounded boring. Very boring, until Harry and his cousin had been attacked by something called a dementor. Harry fought it off, but had to use magic to do it. It hadn't taken long for the ministry magic to accuse Harry of "Inappropriate Use of Magic by a Minor."
"They sound like a bunch of jerks." Ranma commented at one point.
"Hey! My dad works for the ministry," Ron defended.
"Yeah, it was mostly that Umbridge Lady. She was the most aggressive one."
"Xian Pu think 'heinous bitch' is best description, no?"
Harry laughed, "I really hope I never see her again."
"Anyways Dumbledore came to my rescue, during the trial. He wanted me to stay…with some friends…but I was sick of being locked up over the summer and was able to talk my way into getting at least one day out and about. Of course I was being watched constantly, but it was worth it to see what you did to Malfoy."
Ranma grinned and stretched back, basking in the memory.
"What were you up to?" Harry asked Hermione and Ron.
"Actually Harry, Ron and I were made prefects! Isn't that great?" Hermione was ecstatic.
"That's great Hermione, Ron. Really bully." Harry said, distractedly. Hermione and Ron stared at the Boy Who Lived.
'He's upset about something' Hermione thought. She watched as Harry rolled his eyes briefly towards Ranma and Xian Pu.
'But he doesn't want say anything in front of Ranma and Xian Pu' Hermione's thought, as she absently gazed at the voluptuous girl with lavender hair. Finding herself watching the girl, she studied the interaction of her new friends. Ranma seemed tentative, but comfortable with Xian Pu. She watched the way Xian Pu frequently touched Ranma. Hermione took a casual interest in Xian Pu's caressing of his hand, and her leaning up against him.
She looked to Ron and Harry. Boys were so stupid. At least Ranma looked like he knew what to do with a girl. Of course he was one, part time.
A knock at the door broke her concentration, and announced a visitor.
Ranma opened the door, and Khu Lon leaned into the cabin on her staff.
"Glad to find you fully clothed son-in-law." Cologne chuckled, and looked at the gathered youngsters. Her casual glance turned to a careful study of Harry.
"Some times I wonder about your luck sonny. You didn't knee a Buddha in the groin in a past life did you? Well in any case, we'll be arriving soon. So put your robes on. I've arranged for you to be in classes with the fifth year students. This year they will be studying up for their OWL's, so they will be spending much of the year reviewing older material, and polishing their skills. With a little tutoring you might just be able to catch up." The elder said.
"When the train stops, however I want you to find the first year students. There are certain traditions to uphold." Khu Lon concluded, before leaving the cabin.
Ranma didn't like this one bit. School hadn't even begun yet for the year and there was already talk of tests.
"Hey Xian Pu, let's leave the boys here while we go put our robes on." Hermione invited.
"Why? Xian Pu can change right here."
Hermione was about point out three reasons why this was a bad idea, when Xian Pu started to remove the Mandarin dress she wore.
Ron and Harry were both unconscious before Xian Pu revealed anything. Their noses had erupted in blood, and they fell to the ground into two small heaps. A gentle grin betrayed their dreams. Ranma managed to stay conscious, but Xian Pu threw her dress over his head blocking his vision before she put her robe on.
"Why aren't you wearing anything under your robes Xian Pu?" Hermione asked as Ron and Harry attempted to start regaining consciousness. This was a doomed effort, as Ron and Harry were now significantly deeper into the realm of sweet, sweet dreams.
With Ron and Harry solidly unconscious, and Ranma was blinded by Xian Pu's dress, Hermione quickly followed Xian Pu's lead.
An hour later, the train finally pulled to a stop.
Bidding their new friends goodbye, Xian Pu and Ranma made their way over to the group of first years. The younger students looked like toddlers as they mobbed around a large man. Ranma stared at the figure, he was simply ginormous, ginormous and hairy. He stood nearly twice as tall as Ranma's girl half, and his huge thick beard dominated the lower half of his face.
"Gather around first years. My name is professor Hagrid." the man announced with jovial grin. Xian Pu giggled at the way his beard bobbed like gelatin in a minor earthquake.
"Everyone here? Good, good."
Ranma and Xian Pu stuck out in the crowd, standing two to three heads taller than the tallest first year student. Many of the students, looked at them quizzically. Ranma could imagine them wondering, what they were doing, how old they were and where they were from. Luckily the giant broke the atmosphere.
"You must be the transfer students Miss Khu Lon-chan* brought with her" Hagrid exclaimed.
"Uh yeah, that would be us." Ranma commented.
"Aiyah, Great-grand-mother too famous here!" Xian Pu exclaimed.
"Anyway I know you're all anxious to get to Hogwarts, so follow me. We'll be taking boats across the lake. Don't mind the kraken; it'll leave you alone as long as you follow a few basic rules of safety. Rule #1, do not taunt the kraken. Rule #2, keep all appendages, limbs inside the boat" As Hagrid spouted a long list of rules. Ranma stared at the fleet of rickety old boats with dread.
"And finally Rule #247; don't spit pomegranate seeds into the lake. He really hates it when you do that." Hagrid concluded.
After a brief affirmative, the students climbed into the boats. Staring at the rickety dinghy, Xian Pu and Ranma approached it slowly. Seeing that everyone else had already boarded their own boats, they carefully stepped into the rowboat. It rocked lightly but stayed up right, and Ranma was happy to find the interior dry and absent of leaks.
Ranma started looking for oars, but before he found any the boat started to glide away from shore, and into a silent procession with the rest of the fleet. Ranma stared out across the lake.
The water was murky and with only moonlight to go by it was difficult to tell how deep the water was. Xian Pu suddenly gripped Ranma's hand tightly and silently pointed to the water a few feet to the side of the boat. Two eyes, glowing with moonlight, shone up from the water. Details were not visible, but the eyes were separated by at least a foot, whatever it was, it was huge. Suddenly the thing crested the surface its wet scales sparkling like worn sequins. It did not stay visible for long, as it dove silent and quickly. Its tail remained visible the longest, as it rose several feet into the air before fluttering its way below the water surface.
The next several minutes were a nervous affair, as Ranma and Xian Pu waited for the beast to burst to the surface. But the creature did not return, and Ranma and Xian Pu slowly relaxed, as the boat made its way over to the large castle. Soon the moonlight was replaced by scattered torches as the boats came to a rest in dock tucked in large cave under the castle. Stepping out of the boat Ranma and Xian Pu disembarked from the dinghy, dry and in their birth forms.
"All right students, please form a queue. We'll be sorting you into your houses shortly. Ranma, Xian Pu please come on up to the front," he instructed. When there was finally enough of a line formed he lead them into the school. Ranma and Xian Pu marveled at the sights in the castle. Stairways moved, doors appeared and vanished, and the people in pictures looked alive! Eventually, Hagrid slowed the group to a stop in front of the entrance to a large hall.
Inside, a man who looked older than anyone Ranma had ever met stood addressing the students. He seemed even older than Happosai and Khu Lon! Oddly his body had resisted the shrinkage Ranma had come to expect from the elderly. Looking at his face, Ranma spotted the same wizened twinkling eyes of youthful energy and joy that Ranma saw in the elders from Nerima.
"This year students, I take great pride to announce that an old friend of mine, Professor Khu Lon will be joining the staff of Hogwarts. She will assist with the teaching of Muggle Relations and Magical History." The old man proclaimed.
"We, indeed, are lucky to be graced by her presence. Before I became Head Master, Khu Lon was one our top instructors and her return from the Far East is truly a great blessing." The old man waited for a moment as applause broke out.
"Also new to our staff this year will be Professor Dolores Umbridge. She will be teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts." The old man gestured to something resembling a giant, pink, and fuzzy marshmallow. The woman stood and curtsied to the large crowd of students. There was some polite applause, and a few sympathetic whispers were audible amongst the tables.
"And now the Sorting!" Dumbledore announced, to thunderous applause. Gesturing the cheering down, the wizard continued his proclamation.
"The honor of being sorted first shall go to a pair of transfer students, which have accompanied Professor Khu Lon. Ranma Saotome, please come forward for the sorting."
As Ranma entered, he surveyed the students who looked at him in curiosity. They were of mixed ages but Ranma did notice a fair number close to his age. He flashed a grin at the crowd and many girls sighed at his confident smile, blue eyes and chiseled chin. He noticed many boys noticing the girls noticing him. He smirked at their green looks.
"Just like Nerima… Just really weird school uniforms." Ranma determined.
When he approached the platform, he was pointed to a seat, behind which Dumbledore stood smiling friendly at him. Dumbledore was holding the ugliest hat Ranma had ever seen. The hat swayed clumsily back and forth. Sitting down and facing the students, Ranma suddenly felt the weight of the old shapeless hat upon his head.
"Heyz… you guyz… I haven't had a chanze to zing yet…" The hat complained. Dumbledore paused and held the hat out, presenting it to the school. At which point the
hat started to sing:
Well when I get drunk
I walk like a duck and smell like a skunk
Don't hurt me nothing don't hurt my pride,
Cause I got my girl right by my side
She's trying to hide.
Pretend she don't know me.
The telephone rang
It was president Kennedy calling me up.
He said "My friend Bob how do I make the country grow"
I said "My Friend John Bridgette Bardeaux…"
At this point the hat paused. Grumbled to itself and then apologized.
"That's not a sorting song… that's Bob Dylan… hold on let's see. Ahem"
Let's get it on…
"No, not quite right either."
I feeeeeel nice,
Like sugar and spice…
"Nope screw it… Let's get this going; I'd like to be done before my hangover sets in." Dumbledore looked irritated but smiled, and set the hat on Ranma's head.
"Well, well, what do we have here?" A voice entered Ranma's mind.
"You the hat?" Ranma asked.
"Correct if ineloquent. You're old for the sorting, really old, took a while to get here huh? Well we better get started..." The Hat's voice replied.
"Let's see strong, confidence, more confidence, and even more confidence. Great googly moogly! You got some massive ego kid. What else… brave, and a recent loss. Someone very close..." The hat got more somber.
"Your friends are important. You'd make a great Hufflepuff. Definitely not Ravenclaw material, you're not equipped for it. You'd be a fair Slytherin, but I think…"
"Gryffindor!" The hat shouted aloud. One of the tables exploded in applause, and Ranma was guided to that table. There Ron, Hermione, and Harry made room for him to join him into the house.
Ranma listened as Xian Pu was announced, as he took his seat. Ranma watched in amusement as the reactions of the genders reversed, as women fumed, and boy's leered.
Xian Pu sat down and the hat began to speak to her.
"You're an interesting one. Ravenclaw I think, yes defin…" the hat started.
"You will put me in with Airen or I will disassemble you and remake you into a pair of boxers for Hagrid…" She thought back.
"Gryffindor!" The hat quickly piped out. Xian Pu Giggled in pleasure, kissed the hat, and ran down to join Ranma as the table erupted in cheer.
Ranma and Xian Pu were the hot topic at the Gryphandor table. Harry and Ron began to introduce them to the rest of their house, pausing to cheer on any new allies to join the household as the first years were sorted.
"And that concludes the sorting…" Dumbledore was cut off when Filch came running up and whispered into the headmaster's ear.
"Oh it seems we have one more! I do love surprises. She is another transfer student, in fact!" Dumbledore announced. Ranma and Xian Pu turned to the front to see the last to be sorted. Ranma froze cold.
"No. Not her" he whispered, seeing the identity of the new student.
"Oh ho ho ho ho!" Kodachi Kuno cackled from up front.
"Xian Pu under the table!" Ranma whispered.
"Now?" She whispered through an impish grin.
"Yes now, we don't want to be seen" he hurried. Xian Pu dove under the table, and Ranma slipped into the Umisenken. Once he was out of sight Ranma relaxed a little, confident that they would remain undiscovered.
"Headmaster? As it is traditional in my homeland, I'd like to introduce myself to my classmates." Kodachi asked with an informing tone. Dumbledore smiled and let her step even further upstage.
"You are to kind Headmaster Dumbledore" Kodachi started.
"Attention fellow students of Hogwarts, you're all very blessed to have been given the opportunity to study with me this year. I know that you'll soon recognize me as the brightest, most beautiful…" She began. Slowly as Kodachi pontificated upon her grace and virtues, the mood in the room turned. What was normally a joyous affair had turned to pure tedium. At first Dumbledore smiled genuinely, but his eyes began to betray a certain determination. No one ruined one of his feasts….
"Can you believe her?" Hermione whispered to her housemates.
"And as every boy here is certainly taken with my flawless beauty, and will surely wish to attempt to woo the virtuous, and pure, heart of the Black Rose…" Kodachi continued in her speech.
"Hey Ranma, this isn't normal in Japan is it? Hey where's Ranma?" Ron asked, noticing that Ranma seat was now empty.
While the student body was straining to keep attention to the narcissistic dribble spouting from Kodachi, Ranma was straining to keep quiet and still, as Xian Pu had found her way into his robes.
With a determined, almost zealous look in his eye Dumbledore crept behind Kodachi, and dropped the sorting hat on her head, mid sentence.
"Slytherin!" it proclaimed, and every table but Slytherin's sighed in relief. The Slytherin's cheered, lightly, and Kodachi stepped down to join her new housemates.
The place settings at Ranma's spot rattled for a moment.
"All clear" Ranma whispered trembling to Xian Pu who reluctantly crawled back to her seat.
Reappearing in front of Harry and the gang, Ranma startled his new friends.
"I know her from back home…She's one crazy b…" he tried to explain.
"Watch your mouth…" Hermione chastised Ranma.
"I'm just talking about Kuno" Ranma huffed.
"Well that's fine then. Brilliant." Harry replied. Dean stared at the group for a moment, rolled his eyes and got back to listening to a joke Fred and George were telling.
Looking at Umbridge, Ranma pondered her momentarily.
"Hey Harry aint that the chick who tried to send you away for life?" Ranma asked.
"Yeah, she is." Harry answered, staring surly.
"Don't worry! Antagonizing school officials is a specialty of the 'Saotome Musabetsu Kakuto Ryu'!" Ranma encouraged, but Harry still looked doubtful.
"Trust me... She looks like a pink Domokun, she doesn't stand a chance!" Ranma's cocky grin was demanding. Harry couldn't help but grin nervously. Work done, Ranma returned to what was really important…eating.
Ranma settled into the feast. Gradually, the discussion around him came slowly to a stop. Ranma didn't notice at first. He couldn't believe how awesome this feast was. There were mounds of food everywhere. Meats, deserts, vegetables, drinks, everything cooked to absolute perfection. Plus he found if he wanted something, he would find it somewhere in very short order. Which lead to an interesting, but disgustingly bad speculation.
"I wonder if they have Walrus Sashimi Etoufee?" Ranma enquired aloud.
And sure enough, with a little searching he found a small helping of the culinary catastrophe. It was a rice dish, with a Creole spiced sauce. Layered on top was delicately arranged and thinly shaved raw walrus meat.
"You're seriously not going to eat that are you?" Ron asked, staring at the dish.
"It reminds me of something the tomboy made once…" Ranma muttered quietly. Reaching out with his chopsticks, he scooped a generous portion of rice sauce and walrus, and brought it to his mouth. Ranma chewed. Starting slowly and tentatively, Ranma began to chew more confidently. Then he stopped. His eyes rolled back and his face turned orange. Suddenly Ranma started to speed chew, trying desperately to get the mouthful swallowed.
"Yep, that was it… I always wondered what the mystery meat was." Ranma exclaimed after finally getting a bite down.
"That didn't look so bad…" Fred started.
"Why don't you give it a try Ron?" George finished.
Ron however wasn't fooled, so Fred and George desperately took the offending plate around the table, trying desperately to find someone who hadn't witnessed Ranma's reaction.
Ranma quickly searched for something to cleanse his deeply offended palate. Trying dish after dish, drink after drink.
"Hey Xian Pu, try some of this meat roll… It's got chicken, duck, and turkey! Hey what is every staring at?" He asked
"Your… your… table managers are monstrous." complained Hermione.
"I've never seen someone eat that fast before…" George started.
"Or that much," and Fred finished. Ranma looked at the twins quizzically for a moment.
Grinning, Ranma dug back into the food, but at a slightly more subdued rate.
At the end of dinner they were all lead to the dormitories. Hermione went to the front and demonstrated the usage of the password to the pictures to enter the dorm. Ranma was flabbergasted. He had thought he saw the pictures moving, but the pictures actually interacted with people. Ranma was about to enter the dorm when he found himself pulled aside with Hermione, and Xian Pu.
A distinguished woman smiled at them gently, briefly. Ranma remember her being introduced at the feast as professor McGonagall.
"Ranma, Xian Pu, I take it you've meet house Gryffindor's star pupil Hermione Granger?" When the teens nodded, she continued.
"Good, Cologne and I go back a long time, and she asked me to find a tutor for the two of you, due to your rather unorthodox transfer. I can think of no one better suited than Hermione. However it will still take considerable work to catch up. You will need to spend two hours studying with her after classes. Hopefully you'll be able to catch up, and keep her out of trouble." Hermione, who had smiled through most of the discourse, frowned deeply at the end.
"Now go get some sleep, it's been a long day children, and classes begin tomorrow, you'll need all the energy you can muster." Ranma frowned at this, but followed Hermione into the dorm.
Inside tons of students were telling jokes and relaxing. Ranma felt something rubbing down around his legs, and reached down. Picking up P-Onna he gave the piglet a gentle squeeze and sat down to pet it. Quickly all the girls in the room began to center their attention on the hunk on the couch, and the adorable potbellied pig his lap.
A few of the boys in the dorm gave Ranma the evil eye, but mostly they returned to the discussions with the other boys in the household, or gawked at Xian Pu.
Time began to slow as people started to settle down and eventually make their way to bed. Soon only Ranma, Xian Pu, Harry, Ron and Hermione remained.
"Come On Xian Pu, let's get some sleep." Hermione said.
"Let me get airen," Xian Pu Agreed. Every eye in the room widened and turned to Xian Pu as she pulled Ranma out of the couch.
Xian Pu got as far as the stairs to the girls rooms, when Hermione, stepped into her way.
"Why clever girl block way?" Xian Pu asked.
"No boys are allowed in the girl's rooms!" Hermione cried, not believing that she had to say this. Xian Pu paused momentarily. Grabbing a near by vase, she pulled the flowers they held out, poured the some water on Ranma, and returned the flowers to the vase.
Now hauling a slightly soggy Ranma-chan up the stairs, she paused to wave good night to new friends who looked as if they never had eyelids in their lives before.
After the two had disappeared into the darkness of the higher stairs, Hermione, turned to Ron and Harry. She opened her mouth to say something, then froze and looked intently at the two boys.
"Oh my… Ron! Harry! Those had better be your wands!"
There was a sudden and cold silence in the room. Suddenly Harry sniggered. Then Ron sniggered.
"I didn't mean that!"
"Oh yes you did!"
"Shut up Harry! I could expect this from Ron, but you… AUGHHH!" As she turned, Harry and Ron broke their composures and started laughing loudly. Hermione, turned around looked at Ron and Harry again for a moment.
"That's better, now you won't stab anything on your way to bed." Hermione then paused and wrinkled her nose in frustration. "Oh Ron what will I ever do with you?" she muttered to herself.
"Eh? Do what?"
"Shut up Ron." And with that Hermione finally went up the stairs and to bed.
*Author's note: Anyone know the proper diminutive in Chinese to use in this situation?