Fangs of Man and Beast
A Harry Potter/Naruto/Hellsing Fanfiction
Summary: Open wide, scarred child, and bear your teeth to the world, for you are not the only with fangs, nor the will to use them.
Chapter 1-Between Heaven and Hell
It was a word that meant many things to many people. It could vary between confinement, torture, atonement, a striping of privileges, or anything else that the fiendish mind of a human could devise. Currently, though, the punishment taking place was something no man could have conceived of, much less followed through with. It was beyond the power of any mere mortal to meddle so with the shape and form of a living being…
And yet, it was reality.
Therefore, if it was not the work of mortal man, then it should be attributed to the spiritual realm. It would, of course, be no surprise to him that something not of this world should stoop so low as to befoul his personal business. After all, had it not been he, the greatest of the shinobi, who had bent nature to his will with nearly no effort at all? Had it not been him who had looked upon whole armies and sneered at their weakness and cowardice? Had it not been him who would see his own comrades as nothing more than dead weight to be cast aside?
Yes, he had sought to walk among the high kami and, in turn, they had sought to teach him a lesson no one else had managed to teach him. They swept him to the side effortlessly and it was only by luck or chance that the intricate cloak of protections he'd woven around himself had sustained that first blow. Even then, all of his meticulous seal-work, vast reworking of his own body, and twisting of his soul…
No, he'd been brought low to make a point, to teach a lesson…
And by all the stars in the heavens had he learned it!
The word was ash in his mouth even as he remembered, dimly, the drifting sensation that had overwhelmed him after the kami had struck him down, and the sudden burst of light as his consciousness returned to real reality. There had been people milling about, unmistakably medical personal, though he really had to wonder what sort of depraved lunatic would be willing to save his life…
That was when it first struck.
All in all, a person raised in western philosophies and religion might not have made the connection at all, but for more eastern, or at least pseudo-eastern traditions, it was not so much a leap of faith as an intuitive connection. After all, reincarnation was a basis for many different ideologies, and, as such, a centerpiece of the culture; whereas a gaijin might look at the subject in disbelief, he merely consigned himself to the very damning truth that he had died.
The realization of that, of course, was followed by no small amount of pride towards his own mind being still intact. He could no longer feel the tremendous strength of what was doubtlessly his former body and reincarnation had seemingly purged the wondrous modification he'd wrought on his own soul as well…
Which was disappointing, but not disastrous.
Orochimaru, former missing-nin of Konoha, Otokage, and Akatsuki member frowned beneath his childish guise. There were, of course, other advantages and disadvantages to be tallied, but…on the whole, starting over again, from the ground up as it were…could be very much a good prospect for him.
Eighteen months later, he was not so sure.
He was beginning to wonder if this had not actually been some form of obscure punishment reserved for especially depraved criminals such as himself. It had been obvious from the very beginning that his new…environment was substantially different than his older one. Which, if he was honest, vexed him quite a bit. For a few moments he had idly entertained notions of revenge against those that had wronged him once again…the Kyuubi brat, the Uchiha brothers, his Apprentice…
Such plans would have to be suspended indefinitely in favor of more…pressing concerns. Those concerns were, of course, myriad in number and daunting in nature. The first and foremost difficulty he faced was mastering both the spoken and written language of his new…parents. With little else to concern his own infantile body with, this matter had been quickly resolved.
Orochimaru, or 'Harry Potter,' as was his new name apparently was very nearly went insane during those first few months in his new body. The endless strings of baby talk, inane faces, and complete dependence on his caretakers was tearing at his obsessive mindset to the point where tears and cries of frustration more than made up for the patches of calm and placid behavior that mystified his parents until they were dismissed as fits of pique.
Luckily, at least for young Harry, James Potter and his friends were idiots.
They, unlike Lily and her close knit group of new mothers, would often take the child out and indulge in play that would have had the matron of the house screaming in panic. Such indulgence was physically stimulating in a way that allowed the former snake sannin to acclimate his mind and body in a way that sitting in a magically-rocking crib just didn't.
Oh, and magic.
Magic was…seemingly beyond understanding. What he had seen of his parents performing miscellaneous spells, there were completely foreign principles at work in comparison to even the most advanced chakra abilities. He'd seen physical substance emerge from thin air! His 'godfather,' the long-time best friend of his father was apparently able to shift between a human form and that of a dog with no effort! Even the most basic abilities made Orochimaru's mouth water…
Apparently, though, almost all magic required some sort of focus: a 'wand.'
However, chakra did not.
It was mere hours after being born that Orochimaru began chakra exercises, subtle flexing of existential muscles and spiritual power. Amazingly, some of his chakra pool had translated to his new life in this strange world, leaving him enough energy to both actively work with and practice low-level techniques with. Of course, a complete lack of manual dexterity left him with fewer options than he would have liked.
Still, techniques like Chakra no Hikari, which produced a simple light and only took concentration allowed for extensive experimentation…color, brightness, shape, the possibilities were nearly endless. There were other 'parlor tricks' also, that made up the short list of entertainment that Orochimaru could pursue during his tenure as a child. Thankfully, the humiliation of diaper changes, feedings, and bathing was mercifully short, once again, owing to the use of magic.
Those were how the first eighteen listless months of Orochimaru's…of Harry Potter's life were spent. And, of course, his parents noticed some odd things. Harry was a quiet child save for a very few instances where babyish irritability won out in which cases his magic would lash out and blow things up, break things, or cause dazzling light shows…
Yes, Harry was a very healthy magical baby.
Then, it all took a turn for the decidedly weird.
The first inklings of a new bizarreness invading Orochimaru's new life came shortly after he'd turned one. Coincidentally, the ensuing birthday party was a gross embarrassment and the pictures of said event would be burned as soon as he developed the personal independence to find and destroy them. Yes, his dignity would be preserved no matter what…
People had died for less in his former life.
But still, there had apparently been some form of prophecy made concerning himself and some local 'Dark Lord.' From what he could gather by overhearing 'adults' conversations, there were no outlined qualifications on the position, merely to reap murder and terror across the nearby areas and practice something blandly termed 'dark magic.'
Of course, Orochimaru couldn't help but hear those words said with the same fear and trepidation that his former contemporaries said 'forbidden jutsu.' Mentally, the reincarnate tagged the subject for further exploration once he attained a basic grounding in the arcane subject's general prerequisites.
The prophecy, distilled to its essence, stated that he and the dark lord would war with each other until one was left. He could only assume that his parents fit the qualifications for having 'thrice defied' whoever the dark lord was or there would not have been such blatant concern for his own wellbeing. By all the kami, though, there was concern. He had seldom ever in all his nearly sixty years of his previous life, had anyone shown this level concern for his wellbeing…
Quite frankly, it was unnerving and disturbing.
When it came down to it, young Harry was not at all sure of his course of action, much less what he thought of the 'foretelling' of a great battle between good and evil…with himself cast as a defender of all that was good and just. The concept was…too bizarre to put into words (even if he had the verbal development to do so at the moment).
He was greatly relieved when he received word that Neville Longbottom's parents had been tortured to insanity and that the child himself had been 'chosen' by the prophecy. Evidently, surviving a 'death curse' was completely unprecedented and deserving of some great hero worship. He, though, had much more important things to do than save a populous from some great boogeyman lurking in the shadows. There were libraries to plunder, hypothesizes to theorize, puzzles to solve, and…most likely…quite a few people to kill in the process.
Orochimaru, behind Harry Potter's eyes, began to plot and plan.
Lily Potter had never seen a baby laugh fiendishly so it was understandable for her to mistake it for childish amusement.
A/N: Well, its been awhile, folks. I don't really think 'I'm sorry' covers it for my semester's worth of absence, but you have my regrets for not being able to update sooner.
For those of you who are wondering, yes, I'm still working on some of my other fics, HIVEMinded being among them. That said, I'm still finishing up my college stuff and, for those who missed the notice, this is my senior year, so things have been busy. Granted, I've written something like 50 pages worth of papers, my laptop's hard drive failed, and finals have already occurred, so let's hope I'm through the gauntlet so far and onto better prospects. Regular updates should resume soon. 'Soon' being, of course, somewhat arbitrary.