As the scent of baking pumpkin wafted through the halls on Halloween, Harry wondered if it would taste good prepared the way the kitchen staff were making it for the feast in honor of Samhain. Well, technically, it was in honor of both Samhain and All Hallow's Eve. That had been another of those things that the Founders had argued on, as two of them had been Christian and two pagan, Salazar and Godric arguing on this issue most fiercely. In the end, since both celebrations took place on the same day, there had been a sort of general feast before the Christian and the Pagan students split up and followed the traditions custom and religion dictated, some of which coincided. Today however, the feast was the only remnant of the traditional Halloween activities that had taken place at Hogwarts in centuries past.
The nearly two months leading up to this day had been somewhat mundane compared to life in Midgar. Fortunately, there had been the task of assimilating himself into an alien culture to keep him occupied. Some of the things the wizards did in the normal course of their days and lives were frankly incomprehensible. Of course, they came from a different world where the environment was different as well as the wildlife, so it was only logical that their society would evolve along different lines.
His friends had helped him to adapt to life in this world. Neville and Hermione who were his two best friends in Ravenclaw were fonts of information when it came to British wizarding and British Muggle society, which was useful, since he knew little about British Wizarding society, and just a little more about the Muggle side of things. Ronald Weasley and his brothers were good for when he was in the mood for some more physical pursuits as neither Neville nor Hermione were fond of running around or rolling in the dirt. The boys aside from Percy who was trying to maintain a certain reputation in order to further his chances at a Ministry career had taught him a number of games they'd learned over the years including Gnome Pitching. Draco, while not being his friend, was around him often enough, providing him insight into the views of British Wizarding aristocracy, or the closest thing to it there was through his constant snide remarks and insults which failed to get the rise out of him that the other boy wanted.
Flying was fun, and as soon as he was allowed to, he would be getting his own broom. He'd probably even take it back to his world to see if it worked there, and if it did, buy the Shinra science department a spare one that could be studied and reverse-engineered. He knew that such things would be popular amongst daredevils like Uncle Zack. Something that flies, goes fast, and has little to no safety equipment would be close to the ultimate thrill ride. Having been introduced to Quiddich by Ron and his brothers, he could say that he liked it and that he would be trying out for Chaser next year since a slot should be open.
Classes had remained that steady combination between intriguing and boring. The teachers were a mixed bag, but none of them were as bad as his Wutian language teacher or even that sharp-eyed Math teacher he'd had for his last year of high school, and so far none of them were as eccentric as that one science tutor he'd had when he was six. Snape had a bit of a temper, but he'd had nothing on Rufus Shinra who'd been forced to step down from his position after footage of the man trying to strangle him when he was little had gotten out and caused a great deal of negative publicity for the company, ending a long string of such events that had gotten covered over with the victims either being payed off or threatened into silence. McGonagall was stern but fair in the classroom, and practically useless everywhere else, since she was stuck doing three jobs as well as half the Headmaster's job since the Headmaster had three jobs and a government leader demanding his attention as well. Flitwick was funny, nice, and had a bad habit of turning a blind eye to the bullying in his house since he thought it would prepare the kiddies for the real world where there may be worse lying in wait for them. Sprout was nice and had a great love of her plants, Sinistra had a sharp pinch which she used to keep sleepy students awake, Hooch was fun, and Binns was as boring as hell.
Aside from running into and defeating the three-headed dog that was this world's version of a Cerberus which had been guarding a trap door which had led to a half grown Devil's Snare which was easily defeated and finding a winged key to unlock a door and being stymied by a chess set and being caught and stuck in detention for two weeks, he hadn't really had any adventures. Nothing like the time Uncle Zack had took him to Gongaga and he'd been picked up and carried off by that Griffin. It was just as well, seeing as he was supposed to be in school studying.
When his friends had heard of his single adventure, they'd been torn between shocked and amused. The Weasley boys aside from Percy who'd given him a rather disdainful glare had patted him on the back and commiserated with him over the two weeks' detention. Neville had gone a bit pale, though his interest had perked up a bit at the mention of the Devil's Snare and he'd asked a couple of questions about that. Hermione had been stunned, horrified, and then absolutely livid, especially over the loss of points to Ravenclaw which had negated all of the points she'd managed to accrue over the month. She ended up completely refusing to speak with him until he'd ended up in the Hospital Wing after some jerk had pushed him down the stairs.
After his detentions had ended in the middle of the month, things had settled back into their usual routine, and Halloween, which was one of the few holidays the school celebrated had come around. Ron and Hermione ended up having one of their infamous spats at the end of Charms after Hermione had corrected the boy on his pronunciation, exacerbating his inferiority complex which was the result of being the youngest of six boys in a financially disadvantaged home and not having being the baby of the family to mitigate at least some of that because his sister had taken the title a year or so after he was born. Words were exchanged outside of the classroom, and after the Gryffindors and Ravenclaws had split up, he'd been stuck spending the rest of the day smoothing Hermione's ruffled feathers while Neville warily hung in the background.
The feast had turned out to be excellent, which had rather perked up both his and Hermione's moods. As they ate, Neville shared stories of Halloween celebrations he'd been to back home and how one of his cousins from Cornwall had kept bringing him apples every Halloween. When things were winding down however, Professor Quirrel came in yelling about a troll being in the Dungeons. There was a general panic in which there was a great deal of screaming, but unfortunately for his plans to have a decent adventure to share with Uncle Zack when he went home for the Winter Holidays, someone had heard his exclamation of "Alright! A troll!" over it.
A yell of "Sit down Mr. Potter! In fact, all of you, sit down!" immediately followed, silencing the students. Following the yell was a comment of "But, aren't the dormitories better warded?" and a hasty discussion amongst the professors.
And, that was the end of that. While the prefects supervised the students who'd been locked in the Great Hall, the professors went out in search of the troll which they found ten minutes later taking a dump in one of the toilets in a girl's restroom. According to popular rumor, Headmaster Dumbledore had conjured a newspaper, handed it to the troll, and let the creature finish its business before the professors had herded it out of the castle.
Many miles away from Hogwarts, as the staff were dealing with a troll, two people were having a Halloween feast of their own. The food wasn't so much food as dessert, and it wasn't being served at a table. Had anyone else aside from an elderly and half-blind House Elf been there to witness the scene, there would've been a scream of "MY EYES! MY EYES! OBLIVIATE! OBLIVIATE! OBLIVIATE!". But there wasn't, so the couple remained undisturbed.
"More chocolate dear?" Nicholas asked.
"Hmmm. I think I'll try the butterscotch this time." Pernelle replied.
With a smile, Nicholas transferred some butterscotch flavored syrup from a dish to somewhere that a person other than Pernelle probably wouldn't want to think of considering the age of the person involved, and the number of wrinkles it got caught in. People most likely wouldn't want to know what Pernelle did following that either.
In another world, three men were fighting. Technically it was a sparring session, but they were going at it hammer and tongs, so it may as well have been considered a fight. One man who was usually able to rather handily hold the other two off seemed to be struggling against them.
"What's wrong Sephiroth?" Angeal asked as a blow nearly took his opponent's head off.
"Not having the cheering section is distracting." Sephiroth replied.
"I miss him too." Angeal replied.
"We all miss him." Genesis said.
Dumbledore pulled his wand and pointed it at the man who was posing as his longtime friend and Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, silently binding him as he tried to go out the door.
"What gave me away?" the man asked once he was settled in a chair and bound even more securely.
"The fact that you didn't try to steal half the contents of my office." he replied.