Tales From the Grand Line
Disclaimer: I own nothing but the obvious, the rest belongs to JK Rowling and Eichiro Oda.
Author's Note:Yes, this is a repost of chapter 10 from Plotting Bunnies. I decided to make it a series of shorter and longer drabbles. Sporadic updates. Chapter 10 of Plotting Bunnies will be deleted after a while.
Warnings: The story starts right after Roronoa Zoro joins Luffy – i.e. right after the part with Axe-Hand Morgan.
This is not beta-ed!
Chapter One: We Are!
Jumping through the Veil in the Department of Mysteries in a one in a million, perhaps, maybe drink-the-Felix-potion-and-hope-for-the-best chance of ever ending up in the same reality as Sirius Black and finding the man, well, it was utterly daft, bonkers, crazy, mentally disturbing and a million other words and euphemisms that Hermione could have rattled off at the drop of a hat.
"Just because The Quibbler says that the Veil is a gateway to other worlds and dimensions, it doesn't mean that it is actually true, Harry," the bushy-haired woman pointed out.
The green-eyed male smiled at her. "Does that mean that you aren't coming with me?" he asked innocently.
Hermione snorted. "Nice try, but you aren't getting rid of me that easily, Harry."
In the end not only had Ron and Hermione elected to come along, but so had Neville, Luna, Ginny, most of the rest of the D.A., and, shock of all shocks, so had one Draco Malfoy.
"Right now it is best for me to keep a low profile in the wizarding world until things calm down again," the blond Slytherin said. "Besides, you will need someone with a healthy self-preservation instinct with you to keep you alive. You Gryffindors do not know the meaning of self-preservation, so I am doing you all a big favour."
"Of course you are," Ron snorted, but otherwise held his peace. After the war the arguing between Slytherins and Gryffindors seemed just... stupid.
"I am going to be your anchor," declared Mrs Weasley when they told her of the plan to go through the Veil. "I know that I cannot stop you from going, but I can make sure that you come back. Using the same spell we use on our clock which tells us what is going on with each family member, you will bind yourselves to me and if you ever end up in a situation that would have killed you in that world, I will feel it and pull you back here where you are safe and sound."
"Mom, are you sure that is such a good idea?" Ginny asked hesitantly. The Weasley family had lost a lot of children during the war and this was probably Mrs Weasley's attempt to have some sort of control over the situation, but it could also be very tiring and nerve-wracking for the elderly matron. A situation may give the woman the feeling of utter danger and death but it could be resolved in a second, and Mrs Weasley would have exerted herself to pull the person back for no reason at all.
"Do not worry, Ginny, dear," Mrs Weasley puttered around the overly crowded kitchen. "If we set the level of the spell and give it some further specifics, it should be fine. Besides, this will also ensure that all of you end up in the same dimension or world if not the same geographical location for you will be connected to each other through me."
Ron looked as hesitant as Ginny. "Are you cert-"
"Not another word out of you, young man!" Mrs Weasley waved a wooden spoon at her youngest son. "And you cannot talk me out of this, so stop trying."
Everyone knew that when Mrs Weasley took that particular tone the case was closed, the battle lost and all one could do was simply give in and accept it.
So the spell was performed though they had to use Mrs Weasley, Mr Weasley and Xenophilius Lovegood as anchors since there were so many who were going. Other preparations were made and the large group of teens got ready, and then, finally, the day had come and they all met up in the Department of Mysteries in the room with the Veil.
"Well then, on to the next great adventure!" Harry said as he ran up the small steps and through the Veil. He was quickly followed by Hermione and then, of all people, Malfoy. And slowly, one by one, the others that had gathered passed through the Veil and it really was the start of a grand adventure.
Harry and Hermione woke up and found themselves on a small island. The sand was a beautiful light beige colour and surprisingly soft and comfortable, the water was azure blue and clear as crystal, small waves nipping at the shore and practically begging you to come and take a swim. The weather was nice and warm, like a perfect summer day back in England, and with just a little bit of wind coming from the sea that cooled you off and kept it from being too warm. The leaves in the trees and the bushes rustled in the gentle breeze, the cries and shapes of seagulls flew overhead and there were a few odd cries from the local birds that could be heard but not be seen.
"This is amazing." Hermione muttered as she pulled out a band and tied her hair back to keep it out of her face. "It's so nice and peaceful!"
"Beautiful." Harry agreed and pulled off his hoodie. It was far too warm to walk around with that on, and it was much more comfortable in a t-shirt. This was the first time that he was ever on a real beach and actually had the time to enjoy the experience, and he fully intended to make use of it.
They spent a couple of days simply lazing about on the beach before neither of them could take the inactivity anymore and they set off into the trees to explore the island. They soon realized two things: it wasn't big at all and they were the only people there.
"We can't stay here forever no matter how much we may want to." Hermione pointed out one evening as they sat on the beach, roasting a couple of fish on the small bonfire they had made in the sand.
Harry nodded in agreement. "We need to find the others," he said and bit into one of the wonderfully juicy fruits they had found. "And we need to search for Sirius."
"The question now is how do we get off the island? Well, obviously, we need a boat of some sort, but how to make one?" Hermione reached into the bottomless backpack she had packed and pulled out several books and started searching for spells that could help them.
Another two days later the brainy woman had found several spells to help them out and they were both busy using the spells to cut down trees, make planks out of them and then forming them together into a small boat that was comfortably big enough for the two of them and with a single mast with sail placed in the middle of the deck. There was no cabin aboard nor could they go under deck, but it didn't matter much for a witch and a wizard who could easily put up wards to keep away water and cold wind.
"There, that should do it." Harry said with a smile and gazed at their boat. It looked rather professional even though the sail – which had been made from sowing together from his and Hermione's extra clothes – looked like a bad patchwork quilt. They had even given it a name just for the fun of it, and soon the Gryffindor would sail the seas towards the closest inhabited island.
"Here's the food and water." Hermione floated several small wooden barrels that they had also made, and placed some in the prow and an equal amount at the stern so that the weight was equally distributed. Two barrels were filled with fresh water while the other two were filled with food, fish and fruit respectively, and everything was preserved with charms to keep it all as fresh as possible.
"With the barrels it doesn't give us much space." Harry remarked as the two of them started pushing the ship further into the water. It was surprisingly heavy, but the water was nice and warm and they both waded out until it reached their mid thighs before they pulled themselves onto the deck.
"Well, we didn't have much to work with you know. And this boat won't hold forever, especially since we aren't experts at those particular charms and spells. I'd be glad if it lasted us to the nearest inhabited island where we can get information and perhaps buy a real ship – or travel across land. Point me!" Hermione said and the order sent her wand spinning in her palm until it finally pointed out a direction. Another couple of spells took care of the steering oar and made sure that it always steered them in the right direction. They had found nifty wind charms which they used to fill the sail and propel the ship in the direction they wanted, but these had to be renewed every hour or so.
"At least we don't have to worry about the wind every pushing us the wrong way, or suddenly disappearing." Harry grinned and leaned back against the bulwark. There was nothing to do now but relax and wait and enjoy the nice day.
"I worry a bit about underwater currents, but I don't think it will be too much trouble." Hermione leaned back as well and picked up a book from her backpack.
The feeling of excitement and adventure, of sailing into the unknown, disappeared surprisingly fast as they steadily moved forwards and the island got smaller and smaller while nothing else showed up on the horizon. There was nothing to see apart from blue seas and even lighter blue skies with the occasional white fluffy cloud floating by. Even the seagulls slowly dwindled in numbers, and there was only so much one could talk about with your best friend who knew everything anyway, and in the end Harry had to ask Hermione to hand him a book otherwise he was liable to die of boredom.
"If this is what it took for you to start studying I would have thrown you onto a small boat in the middle of the ocean a long time ago," Hermione smiled widely as she handed a book over to Harry.
It took a nice, long five days to get to the island. The first four days had been monotone and boring to the extreme, but the morning of the fifth day had brought along the slow unravelling of the spells and charms on the boat, and the rest of the day had been spent with both Harry and Hermione almost frantically casting spells and charms to keep their vessel afloat and on the right course and moving. They were so busy with that that they didn't notice the island they were heading for until they were close enough to swim to it. And, despite the slowly darkening twilight, they could see smoke arising from further inland and Harry spotted a large ship far away heading towards the island.
And then their little boat failed completely and fell apart.
Both of them shouted in surprise as they fell into the water, only to blink and stare in shock since the water didn't reach them any further than their hips despite the fact that they were still pretty far away from the beach. Around them pieces of wood and fruits and dead fishes floated around along with the clothes that they had used to make their patchwork sail.
"Hurry and pick up the food and the clothes before they float away!" Hermione exclaimed and made a grab for the closest items.
"Got it! Accio clothes!" Harry pointed his want to Hermione's backpack and watched as all the wet clothes flew into it before repeating the spell and summoning their food and directing them into his own little backpack which wasn't bottomless like Hermione's but was still much larger than what it looked like.
Finally back on dry land Hermione simply waved her wand and dried both herself and Harry off before she conjured bluebell flames. "It's getting colder since the night's coming and I don't want to get sick. Besides, we need to eat something and I'm just too tired to walk around and search for dry sticks."
They huddled together around the fire and warmed themselves and cooked their last fish. Desert consisted of fruits but they left some of those for tomorrow's breakfast. Hermione pointed her wand into her backpack and cast a drying charm on the clothes before casting a charm that would part them into two piles of clothes, one pile of her clothes and the other pile being Harry's. A few charms ensured a comfortable warmth throughout the night and, laying down close to the blue flames and enjoying the heat, Harry and Hermione slowly fell asleep while watching the dark skies and counting the shining stars.
If they had been just a little bit more awake and aware of their surroundings then they would have known that they had been watched ever since they came in view of the island, and that someone had seen all the magic that the two of them had used in the past half hour or more. And now that someone left their observation point and ran through the woods all the way back to the town that was built on the island. The figure ran through the entire dark town and up to a large white tower. A flagpole on top proudly flew the white flag with a stylized bird holding a wrench and the words MARINE written underneath the bird in blue. There was a high stone fence around the entire compound, but the gates opened to let the marine private through, his white shirt and blue pants and cap making him easily blend it with the rest of the men in the compound.
Running to the large tower and up countless stairs and down countless corridors and past fellow marines, the private didn't stop until he had reached a pair of fancy double doors. A pair of marines stood guard outside, rifles in their hands and swords at their hips, and they watched calmly as the private took a moment to get his breath back before he managed to pant out: "I need to see the lieutenant!"
"It is rather late." One of the guards said.
"This is important!" the private insisted.
"Come back tomorrow." Said the other guard.
"But he must know!"
The two guards sighed and shook their heads. Rookies. "Alright, what must he know?"
"He said he wanted to know if ever someone with Devil Fruit powers landed on the island, right?"
"Yes, so what?"
"Well two of them just landed on the north beach! They were waving sticks around and making things fly and conjuring floating blue flames!" the private nearly waved his arms about in his excitement. A second later he found himself pushed into the office and face to face with the lieutenant and telling said lieutenant what he had seen on the north beach.
The next morning Harry and Hermione were right in the middle of their breakfast of fruits when there were shouts and running feet and before they knew it they had been surrounded by a large group of marines all of which were pointing either rifles or swords at them and shouting for them not to move a muscle.
"Make way for Marine Lieutenant Adámas Dia Mond!" a voice shouted and the marines parted and made a path for their lieutenant. Adámas Dia Mond looked rather like a spinning top, his tiny head placed upon the broadest shoulders that Harry and Hermione had ever seen, and from the shoulders his body slanted downwards to his tiny feet. He seemed ready to start spinning around at the drop of a hat, and Harry had to bite his lip to keep from snickering at the sight.
"Uhm, may we help you somehow, lieutenant?" Hermione spoke up hesitantly. Neither she nor Harry had any idea of what was going on and why they had suddenly been attacked the first thing in the morning.
"Silence!" a marine shouted out and stepped up beside the lieutentant who remained silent and simply kept staring at Harry and Hermione. The marine pulled out a piece of paper, unrolled it and started reading. "Be it known that you have sinned for your willful commission of crimes against the World Government. Said crimes are to be cited herewith: landing on the beach without papers, not registering with the marines when stepping onto the island, eating Devil Fruits and practicing evil witchcraft on the surroundings-"
Harry stared open-mouthed. "That's insane!" he protested. "How the hell could we know that we were supposed to have papers or register with the marines when coming here? And what in heaven's name are Devil Fruits?"
He notably didn't say anything about the witchcraft stuff. If people here were as suspicious and afraid of witchcraft as people had been back on Earth during the Salem Witch Trials or the Inquisition, then it would simply be best to forget all about magic for the moment.
"Silence, criminal! Get to your feet!" the marines moved in and Harry and Hermione jumped to their feet, their backpacks clutched in their hands as they moved back to back to keep from being poked by rifle barrles or sword points.
"I have decreed that Devil Fruit powers shall be illegal on this island, and my word is, indeed, law." Adámas Dia Mond spoke up finally. His voice was... squeaky to say the least, and Harry and Hermione shared a rather freaked-out look. These people were starting to seem rather weird.
"You have now two options, criminals," the lead marine spoke up again. "You can either come along calmly and serve your sentence, or you can pay us twenty million berri. You will also have to use your Devil Fruit powers in some way to help the town and prove to us that you are here peacefully."
"Twenty million berri?" Hermione repeated in shock. Berri was obviously the local currency and she had no idea how much that would be in pounds or in galleons and sickles and knuts, but the very sum was more than enough to nearly give her a heart-attack.
Green eyes narrowing, Harry frowned. The sum was ridiculous especially when neither one of them had any idea of what these marines were talking about, and the rest of it just sounded like a way of taking advantage of cheap labour. Sharing a look between each other, the two eighteen-year-olds then promptly twisted on the spot and disappeared from the ring of rifles and swords with a loud crack. The marines cried out in surprise and shock, some of them falling back on the sand, and Adámas Dia Mond frowned in anger at the escape.
And thus began Harry and Hermione's days as fugitives from the law. Luckily the island was big enough to hide and not be found at once and the marines didn't have enough men to cover it all. At first the local civilians helped Harry and Hermione with food and water, but that soon ended when the marines spread rumours that the two Gryffindors were evil witches come to cast a horrible curse on the island and its inhabitants. After that rumour was spread, people were much more likely to scream bloody murder and throw dangerous things at Harry and Hermione and report them to the marines rather than help them out with food. All of this only made it even more difficult for Harry and Hermione to get a hold of some money and buy themselves a new boat and get away from the island and the very stubborn marines who just wouldn't give up on the chase.
Things actually went rather well for the two of them and they had even found a nice merchant vessel that they could easily sneak aboard and stowaway and finally leave the island. The merchant ship was leaving in a couple of days and Harry and Hermione had parted ways briefly in order to escape a large group of pursuing marines with agreement to meet up at the ship when the time came to leave. However, the day before they were to leave Harry, who had hidden under one of the overturned rowboats at the docks, heard a great commotion around the middle of the day.
"They've caught it! They've caught the female witch-monster! Huzzah for Lieutenant Adámas Dia Mond!" people cheered.
Harry froze where he sat curled up underneath the small rowboat, green eyes wide and his heart jumping into his throat. They had caught Hermione! His first instinct was to jump out of his hiding place and run to her rescue, but the months of travelling around England in search of horcruxes and the war had taught Harry restraint and a little more patience if nothing else, so he managed to keep himself from running straight into a trap and uselessly being caught with Hermione. No, he had to think of something else. But he couldn't do it in the middle of town where it would be too much of a chance to be discovered. The best thing would be for Harry to go back to the beach where he and Hermione had first landed, and try to come up with a plan.
People were so excited about the capture of the 'monster' that they dropped their work-tools and ran off to see the creature. Harry had to bite his lip to keep himself from shouting at them all to stop calling Hermione a monster and an it. Instead he took the opportunity and slid out from his hiding place and quickly ran off down the beach to the closest cluster of trees, and continued running until he was certain that no marines were following him. Afterwards he apparated to the beach on the north side of the island, made sure that there were no marines keeping guard, and then practically collapsed into a sitting position on the sand, head in his hands, and tried to figure out how in heaven's name he could save his best friend from an entire marine base.
It was almost night when a dull thump made Harry look up, and he blinked when he saw a small boat – a bit bigger than the one he and Hermione had managed to put together – run aground in the shallow sand. Nothing and no one was moving aboard the boat as Harry waded out to it. If it didn't belong to anyone then he and Hermione could use it to get away from the island without having to trust their luck and sneak aboard a ship.
Peeking over the rim of the bulwark when he reached the boat, Harry blinked at the sight that met him. Two young men about his own age were laid out on the deck. The leaner one was dressed in a red vest and blue shorts and with sandals on his feet and a straw hat covering his black hair that could rival Harry's own in messiness. The other was much more built, three katana-swords lying near him. This one had short hair in a light green shade that Harry had never seen before – not even on Tonks when she had been showing off. Both of them were unconscious and from the way their stomachs were growling and the lack of barrels of food or water on the boat, it was obvious what was wrong with them.
Sighing and shaking his head Harry started pushing and dragging the boat towards the shore, using magic to push it the rest of the way when it became too difficult to move it manually. Two well-placed mobilicorpus spells lifted the two unconscious men from the boat and onto the beach, and a few accio's soon had summoned enough fruit and fish to feed the two strangers with. Harry started a normal fire and started cooking the food. He was hungry himself and perhaps doing something manual like this would help his brain to work out a way to help Hermione. He hadn't had any luck so far anyway.
The smell of roasting fish soon penetrated the air and both the green-haired swordsman and the teen with the straw hat twitched before they sat up with a shout, practically frothing at the mouth and throwing themselves at the food only to cry out "Hot!" and pull back when the flames burned them.
Harry simply blinked and felt a wee bit freaked out. "Uh, the food will be done in a minute?" he said, though it sounded more as a question than a statement.
The two turned to him and seemed a bit surprised to see him there. It was the black-haired teen with the straw hat that spoke up. "Who are you? My name's Luffy!" the last part was delivered with an impossibly wide grin. The green-haired man didn't say anything and seemed more than content in simply letting the black-haired teen, Luffy, take care of the talking.
"My name is Harry." Harry managed a small smile in return. "It's nice to meet you. Here, the food is ready." He handed the fish and fruits to the other two and had to bite his lip to keep from grinning at the way they swallowed the simple meal.
"Second helpings, please!" Luffy demanded cheerfully barely two minutes later, having already consumed three fish and five fruits.
Harry blinked again in surprise. He was still on his first fish.
"Don't be impolite, Luffy!" the green-haired male growled in a rather deep voice and stuffed fish bones in Luffy's mouth. "Chew on that!"
"Gah! Zoro! Why'd you do that?" Luffy practically stuck his entire hand into his mouth to dislodge the fish bones which had, apparently, gotten stuck.
"You were being an idiot, that's why!" Zoro replied.
"Ah, don't worry about it," Harry protested and handed Luffy his own fruits. The fish would be more than enough for Harry.
"Hahaha! Thanks, hairy man!" Luffy laughed and stuffed the fruit into his mouth, his cheeks bulging out ridiculously. And impossibly, too. It almost seemed as if the young man's skin could stretch to accommodate the food.
"I'm not hairy! I'm Harry!" the green-eyed male protested.
"That's what I said. Hairy."
"No you didn't!" both Harry and Zoro shouted, but Luffy simply laughed and didn't pay any attention.
"And you said it wrong again!" Harry added.
Luffy just laughed and eagerly drank the water that Harry offered him.
Zoro sighed and shook his head before he addressed Harry. "Where are we anyway?"
"Ah, you aren't locals? I thought you were since only locals go out to sea without any food or water. Are you survivors of a shipwreck?" Harry had been rather worried if these two were locals, and he relaxed a little bit now that he knew that they weren't. He also sidestepped the question of where they were since he actually had no idea where this island was. Neither he nor Hermione had managed to get their hands on a map.
"So you aren't a local either?" Luffy's teeth crunched through the fish bones. Notably, he didn't answer the question either, sidestepping it just like Harry had done.
The green-eyed male hesitated a bit, for a moment afraid that these two had heard about him and Hermione from the locals, but then he decided to throw caution to the wind and replied. "No, I'm not local. My friend and I got stranded here when our boat sank."
"Where's your friend?" Luffy looked very excited at the thought of meeting someone new.
Harry nearly winced at the question. "She's, uhm, in the town."
"Oooohhh! There's a town on this island? Let's go, Zoro!" jumping up, Luffy would have ran off in a random direction if Zoro hadn't grabbed his wrist. Harry gaped like a fish on land as Luffy's arm stretched and stretched and stretched like rubber, and the sandal-wearing teen reached the tree-line before he realized that he wasn't being followed. "Why are you sitting there for? Let's go!"
Zoro let go of the arm he was holding and it snapped towards Luffy, smacking the teen in the face and sending him to the ground before the arm snapped into place at a normal length. Zoro, unlike Harry, didn't seem too shocked and instead leaned back against a rock, his three swords laying in the sand beside him. "Calm down, will you? It's far too late to go to town now. Let's just stay here until morning and then we will go and explore."
When Luffy still seemed hesitant and ready to run off to town no matter how late it was, Harry took out his want and conjured up silvery-blue magical butterflies and sent them flying towards Luffy. He didn't think that someone who could stretch like Luffy would scream witch and attack Harry, and the butterflies worked at once and Luffy was utterly transfixed. He chased the magical things around, shouting eagerly and laughing when they simply slipped through his fingers like small sparks before reforming into butterflies and flying off again.
"That will keep him occupied!" Zoro grinned. He didn't seem too concerned about the fact that Harry had just conjured some obviously magical and glowing butterflies. Then again, if he really did travel with a guy who could stretch his arm like Luffy had done, then he had probably seen weirder things than conjured butterflies.
"Where are you headed if you don't know where you are?" Harry asked them a little while later after Luffy had gotten tired of chasing the butterflies around.
"We're heading to the Grand Line!" Luffy was exuberant as always.
"The Grand Line?" he parroted. Harry had no idea what that was but apparently Luffy took it as disbelief rather than ignorance so no awkward questions arose.
The young man nodded so much that his straw hat fell off his head and into the sand. "Yeah! I'm going to be King of the Pirates and find the One Piece!"
Harry couldn't help but smile in the face of such enthusiasm even if he didn't know much about what Luffy was talking about. "That sounds really cool."
"Yup!" Luffy nodded again, dislodging his hat once more. "And Zoro's my first mate!"
"Good luck to the both of you, then." Harry decided that he wouldn't ask about Luffy's insanely stretching arm since neither Luffy nor Zoro had asked about the conjured butterflies. It was only polite, after all, and a pirate-king wannabe like Luffy wasn't going to the nearest marine base to rat on Harry so the green-eyed male felt rather safe in not obliviating them.
They spent some more time sitting around the fire and Harry regaled the other two with a few fun moments from his school life – like the times someone ate a Canary Cream or other Fred and George jokes – and it sent Luffy into guffaws until the young man had to take a moment to get his breath back, and Zoro laughed too though a bit more calmly than Luffy. At some point all of them slipped into sleep and the next morning Harry summoned some fruit as breakfast before he pointed Zoro and Luffy to the path that would take them straight to the town.
"Follow that and you will be in town in twenty minutes tops." He said and pointed at a very well marked, straight path.
"Hey, why don't you come with us and we can look for your friend together!" Luffy suggested with a grin.
Harry simply shook his head. He couldn't get Zoro and Luffy further in trouble with the marines than they already were, and he already had a plan on how to get to Hermione and it didn't involve either of his two new friends. "Ah, no, I'm sorry but I have something else to do first. Perhaps we will see each other in town."
He bid the two pirates goodbye, inwardly musing over just how non-pirate like they were and thinking back to all the muggle pirate movies and the way those had portrayed pirates. Luffy and Zoro resembled anything but pirates! It was rather cute actually, and it served to lift Harry's spirits a little bit before he set out to carry out his plan. It was obvious that Harry couldn't take on a marine base all by himself, magic or not. Nor could he hope to sneak in and sneak out again with Hermione at his side. So that left only one thing: going through the main gate and without trying to hide.
It took Harry an hour to find a marine patrol and another fifteen minutes of pretending to battle with them before he let them overpower and capture him. They took his holly wand at once and snapped it before someone placed it in a small chest to be carried back to the base. The other marines proceeded to give Harry a good beating and kicking before they tied his arms to his torso, practically covering him in ropes from shoulders and to his waist. Six long ropes connected him to the marines, two marines holding on to each rope where four marines walked ahead and four walked behind the procession. And this was how they made their way back to town and through the streets.
"The final monster has been caught!" the marines shouted.
"The second witch is caught! Our town is safe once more!" the civilians cheered. They came out of their houses and shops and stores and stared like gaping fishes at Harry. It couldn't have been worse if Harry had had tentacles or had green skin and two heads, or something.
Then the accusations started to come.
"You made my child sick, you monster!" a harried mother shouted angrily.
"I didn't catch any fish because of your evil spell!" a fisherman accused.
"My puppy died!" a child shouted before picking up a pebble and throwing it at Harry who ducked as much as he could.
It went on and on like that, with the most ridiculous of accusations being placed at Harry's feet as the crowd got more and more agitated. At one point Harry spotted the utterly shocked and surprised faces of Zoro and Luffy staring out of the window of a restaurant, forks with food halfway to their mouths, but Harry pretended not to know them at all and simply moved on when the marines pulled on the ropes. The marine base with its large, pale towed loomed ahead of them and the gates opened up to let them through before closing after them with a deafening finality.
There was no way going back now.
They placed him in a small cell where the bars were apparently made out of something called seastone and were perfect for hindering the usage of Devil Fruit powers. And though Harry felt a slight tingling in his magic whenever he touched the bars and it was a little bit harder to access his magic and bend it to his will, he still didn't have too much trouble making his magic do whatever he wished.
Hermione was brought in about an hour later and was thrown into the small seastone-cell right beside Harry's. She looked the worse for wear like Harry did, but there was little that could break a strong woman like her, especially after what they had gone through in the war against Voldemort. Bruises and cuts were nothing compared to that.
"I wondered how long it would take you to show up," she said quietly. They were sitting on the floor by the bars that parted their two cells, leaning in as close as possible to make sure that no one heard what they were saying. Hermione was definitely bruised and had a few cuts, but otherwise she was fine.
"I figured this was the only way to get to you." Harry replied. "Are you alright? What have they done to you?" he asked. He could see that she was fine, but seeing and getting it confirmed were two very different things.
The bushy-haired woman nodded and absentmindedly pushed some hair behind her ear. The tie she had used to keep the brown strands back was long gone. "A bit sore but nothing like what the Death Eaters would have done." She smiled a bit. "Don't worry about it. Worry more about the fact that we don't have any wands anymore – I assume they broke your wand when they caught you? They broke mine."
The green-eyed male nodded. "They broke my holly wand, yes."
"Your holly wand?" Hermione parroted, then her eyes grew wide. "You don't mean to tell me that you brought the Elder Wand here?" she hissed in shock.
Harry nodded again. "I figured it was best. Besides, what better way to make sure that the Elder Wand doesn't have another master than leaving it in a totally different world? Anyone could have gotten it from Dumbledore's tomb as was proven by Voldemort."
"But what if someone here finds it or takes it from you?"
"That was always the worry in the Wizarding World too, so I don't see any difference." He smiled. "Besides, it's too late to do anything about it now. Now, tell me what these guys have done to you and what they want. If you had been just a normal criminal I doubt they would have bothered to beat you up like that or remove you from this cell at all."
Hermione snorted but let the topic of the Elder Wand go. She sighed. "It's that marine lieutenant who looks like a spinning top – Adámas Dia Mond. He's crazy for jewels and precious stones and metals of any kind – he has an entire swimming pool filled with precious stones and metal like Scrooge McDuck for heaven's sake! – and this island apparently has very rich deposits of gold and silver and precious stones of all kinds and he is doing everything to get them out and add it to his collection. He uses criminals as labour since the local people would have rebelled against him if he had used and abused them."
"I can see where we as 'criminals' would enter the picture." Harry said dryly. This was like a bad movie back home or something.
"Indeed," Hermione was obviously of the same opinion as he was. "The problem is that Adámas Dia Mond is terrified of people coming and stealing his wealth and therefore everyone who is strong enough to present any sort of threat – especially these people with Devil Fruit powers though I still haven't figured out exactly what that entails – he arrests on the most ridiculous of charges, names a ridiculous sum of money they have to pay in order to go free and then uses them and their special skills in working in the mines until they have worked off the sum. Of course, he adds on extra cost for any food and clothes and sleeping arrangements during the stay so the entire sum is constantly getting bigger and bigger."
The green-eyed male shook his head with a sigh. "Can't say I'm surprised, really. If I had that much money I would be worried about people stealing it, too."
"Oh, but that's not all of it. No, since we two have 'eaten' a previously unknown Devil Fruit that gave us these weird powers of ours we are far too dangerous to let live. So they are going to do what people did during the witch hunts and throw us on a bonfire."
"What?" Harry blinked. "You can't be serious. This place doesn't seem like it's stuck in the Dark Ages."
"People fear what they can't understand and they don't understand us." Hermione shook her head. She leaned against the seastone-bars and ignored their tiny effects. "So, what happens now? Do we send an emergency signal to Mrs Weasley and have her pull us back into the Wizarding World, or do we try to get out of this mess and continue our search for Sirius and the rest of the D.A. that came with us?"
Harry had to think about that a little bit. He really didn't want to stop searching for Sirius and the others now before they had even really started, but he didn't want to burn to death either. He wasn't like Wendelin the Weird who had enjoyed pretending to be burnt at the stake and allowed muggles to catch her 47 times in various disguises.
In the end Harry sighed. "We can send Mrs Weasley a message to stand ready and then see what happens when they decide to burn us. I know it's dangerous, but I don't want to give up before we have even started to search."
Hermione sighed too but nodded. "Alright. I don't mind. I don't want to stop now either. I want to see this entire world and write it down in a journal and tell everyone about it when we get home."
Smiling Harry watched as Hermione sunk into a deep sleep-like state that would let her talk to Mrs Weasley and let the woman know to stand ready to pull them back if she ever got the signal. Then Harry told her of the odd couple of Zoro and Luffy that he had met and rescued from a hungry death last night, and Hermione's eyes grew wide when he described the way that Luffy's arm stretched.
"That can't be normal, even here in this world." She said. "Perhaps that is one of those Devil Fruit powers?"
"Simply amazing! A simple fruit that can change the human body like that...!" she trailed off and was off in her own world.
Harry simply chuckled and let her be. They had all the time in the world now – at least until the marines decided that it was time to execute them. He relaxed against the seastone-bars and closed his eyes. The Elder Wand was hidden up his sleeve and within easy reach, and his Invisibility Cloak was hidden up his other sleeve. So they were as ready as possible to get away, all they needed to do now was wait for the opportune moment.
They were taken out to the grounds in the marine compound where two large wooden platforms had been put up. A sturdy pole was sticking out at the middle of the platform and countless bundles of kindling placed all around each pole. Civilians and marines were gathered and waited eagerly for the spectacle, and they jeered as Harry and Hermione were led out and each to a platform before being tied to the poles. Harry was still tied up with ropes from his shoulders and to his waist, so he couldn't reach the Elder Wand. However, the wand was tied to his forearm and touched his skin and his hand was free from the wrist down so he could still move it around and in the correct wand-movements. He would just have to trust that his magic would work like that.
Adámas Dia Mond and a marine stepped up on the platform where Hermione was tied while his second in command stepped up on Harry's platform. The marine and the second in command were both carrying lit torches, the fire crackling and flickering as if hungry and eager to start eating both wood and human flesh.
"We are gathered here today to witness the execution of two irreparable criminals." Adámas Dia Mond started speaking in his squeaky voice, a small snail with a colourful shell held in front of him which repeated what he said and amplified it like a megaphone so that everyone heard it. "They were offered the chance to pay for their crimes by working it off, but replied with threatening to cast an evil spell over this island and its people!"
Harry snorted at that. Evil spell my foot! They hadn't done anything to warrant being criminals in the first place! He wanted to shout it out for them all to hear, but it was best to simply let the marine lieutenant keep on talking. It was enough of a distraction for people that no one would notice it when Harry's hand started motioning in seemingly random patterns as the green-eyed male tried to make his magic work for him. Hermione kept a sharp eye on what he was doing, ready to start making a fuss to give Harry more time.
"Will you repent, you criminals?" Adámas Dia Mond demanded, pointing at Hermione. "Or shall the fires of hell swallow your sinning soul?"
"Never!" Hermione shouted. "We haven't done anything wrong! We haven't thrown any sort of curse or evil spell on this island or its people, nor have we threatened to do so! Just because we don't want to work like slaves in your mines to give you even more gold and jewels we are being burned at the stake!"
"So you do not repent?" said the marine lieutenant in his squeaky tiny voice.
"Didn't I just say so?" Hermione's bushy hair seemed to poof out in her anger, making her look like an angry cat. "And what's with those stupid rules that people with Devil Fruit powers are prohibited from stepping onto the island? How in heaven's name can any stranger know those stupid rules if they haven't grown up on this stupid island?"
'Just a little bit more, Hermione! Keep them occupied just a little bit more!' Harry thought to himself. He could feel the flow of his magic and was learning how to make it do what he wanted despite not using his wand in the usual way.
"Then repent in hell, you sinners!" Adámas Dia Mond shouted and the two marines with the torches threw them onto the bundles of kindling.
The crowds shouted and got more and more excited, waving their arms around like crazy. Hermione couldn't stop a scream of horror from escaping her and she tugged on her ropes as hard as she could. Harry cursed as the flames leaped around him. He barely had a few seconds to get free and get to Hermione before it was too late.
"Come on, damn it! Relashio!" the green-eyed male shouted and forced his magic. The flames were leaping up higher and higher and it was getting unbearably hot and he could hear Hermione shout again, and suddenly the magic snapped into place and the ropes around him fell away into the flames. "Repello!" he roared and the flames were forced away from him, flowing out over the screaming public like orange waves, but Harry paid it no mind. He was already running across his charred platform and jumping over the short gap before landing on Hermione's.
With another wave of his hand Harry roared out the extinguishing spell and the flames slowly got smaller and smaller and finally disappeared. Hermione seemed unconscious and hung in her bonds, her clothes, skin and hair singed and smoking, but as far as Harry could see there was no real damage to her. He ignored the warmth as he grabbed the bundles of charred kindling and threw it away, aiming to hit the marines that were trying to get onto the platform and knocking them back. His own clothes and skin was even more singed than Hermione's by the time he reached her and grabbed at the smoking ropes in an attempt to pull them off.
"Hang on! We'll get-!" a stone-hard hit to the back of the head sent Harry rolling along the floor and to the edge of the platform. He groaned and shook his fuzzed head to clear it, and looked up wide-eyed when a large shadow fell over him. Adámas Dia Mond stood over him, one of the enormous arms raised, ready to bring down a head-crushing fist on the green-eyed wizard. Behind the marine lieutenant Harry could see several marines with drawn swords approaching them and several were already raising their swords only to bring them down on Hermione's unprotected form.
At that point things seemed to go into slow motion.
"NO!" Harry roared as he scrambled to his feet. Adámas Dia Mond's arm came down towards Harry's back as the teen tried to run past, and the marines' swords were heading towards Hermione's unconscious head, ready to chop it off.
"Get out of our way!" two familiar voices shouted. An arm suddenly stretched and stretched and stretched before the fist connected harshly with Adámas Dia Mond's face sending the man flying backwards off the wooden stage. A second later the sound of metal meeting metal violently sounded through the shocked silence and the marines with the swords were stopped a hair's breadth from Hermione's hanging head.
"Luffy! Zoro!" green eyes blinked in surprise as Harry realized who had unexpectedly come to his aid.
Luffy's arm snapped back to its normal length as the young man stepped onto the charred platform, and Zoro threw the marines off the platform with a swipe of his three swords – and Harry had to stop up a moment when he realized that the third sword was clamped between the green-haired male's teeth. It was a wonder that Zoro's neck-muscles and teeth could handle the strain of swinging a heavy sword around let alone using it like a normal weapon in a fight.
"Sorry we're a little bit late, Harry," Zoro said around the sword in his mouth, his speech not at all impaired by the weapon. "We couldn't get past the stupid crowds."
Harry didn't know quite what to say to that.
"So you have backup! You are all here just to steal my precious diamonds!" Adámas Dia Mond clambered back onto the platform and was followed by several marines.
"I don't care about your diamonds, you old bastard!" Luffy shouted at the marine, glaring at him. "But I won't let you hurt my friends!"
"Who the hell do you think you are, you little brat? You have Devil Fruit powers too, don't you? Well, then you can join those two monsters and burn in he-!" the man's speech was broken off as another of Luffy's punches sent him flying into the group of marines behind him – though they didn't fall off the platform this time around.
"I am Monkey D. Luffy and I'm going to be the Pirate King!"
The marines gaped. "Don't announce it so casually!"
Harry, trusting that Luffy and Zoro could handle things for the moment, turned to Hermione's unconscious body and untied her, gently lowering her on the wooden floor and checking her vitals and any burns she may have gotten.
"I have had enough of this nonsense! I won't let you escape and take my jewels! Diamond Spin!" Adámas Dia Mond started spinning like a spinning top, his arms held out from his body and holding onto swords so that he became a deadly whirlwind. "Die! All of you! Die!"
The marines wisely jumped off the platform and Luffy yelped as he jumped away from the deadly spinning blur. Zolo met the threat head on, catching the two swords with his own but was nearly pushed over the edge of the platform by the force and momentum of the spinning Dia Mond.
"Gum-Gum Pistol!" Luffy's voice shouted over the din of the shouting civilians and marines and his arm stretched out over the panicking crowd before it shot towards Dia Mond who was still in a sword-lock with Zoro.
"Diamond Shield!" Adámas Dia Mond shouted when he spotted the fist heading towards his face again, and his skin turned pale and smooth and sparkly like a real diamond. Apparently the man also had some Devil Fruit powers and they could make him hard as diamond for Luffy's punch didn't even push a strand of hair on the marine's head. "That won't work on me again, you little abomination!"
"How can you call other people abomination when you have the same powers?" Zoro demanded and used his inhuman strength to push the diamond-marine away from himself.
"I am nothing like you! I am a marine!" Dia Mond declared as if that was the only thing that counted. The marines finally decided to use their rifles and pistols and pointed them at the four 'criminals' on the platform and fired.
Luffy jumped in front of the speeding bullets without a second thought and his skin stretched backwards wherever the bullets hit him, stretching and stretching until they stopped and then Luffy straightened back up with a shout, shooting the bullets back at the marines like a human slingshot.
"Diamond Spin!" he shouted and started spinning again, aiming for Luffy.
"Impedimenta!" Harry shouted and Dia Mond's spinning slowed down considerably almost as if he was moving in slow motion. "Everte Statum!" the spell sent the slowed down marine lieutenant flying off the platform again and into the panicking crowds – that strangely still hadn't left the army compound no matter how panicky they were.
"Waah! So cool!" Luffy shouted eagerly, nearly jumping up and down as he watched Harry's magic work.
"Pay attention to your surroundings, idiot!" Zoro growled and deflected a sword from hitting Luffy in the back, sending the poor unfortunate marine flying.
Harry stepped back from the edge of the platform and instead walked over to Hermione and picked her up. "Let's just get out of here before the marines manage to surround us." He said to the other two, his voice a bit tight, and jumped off the platform. Zoro and Luffy seemed a bit confused at the sudden retreat but they followed him, the marines scattering from their path in fear – Luffy's Gum-Gum Pistol easily removing those that hesitated.
They ran out of the gate to the compound without any trouble. The civilians certainly weren't going to try to stop them and the marines were still gathering around Adádamas Dia Mond to follow them quite yet. Harry led the way, easily running just as fast as Zoro and Luffy despite carrying Hermione's weight, and he directed them towards the path that would take them back to the north beach where Luffy's and Zoro's boat was still moored. Harry collapsed on the soft sand and gently placed Hermione's body down. He couldn't keep back a few tears that now ran down his face and it soon became obvious why even to Luffy and Zoro.
Hermione wasn't breathing anymore.
She was dead.
Well, not dead exactly. Mrs Weasley had pulled her back to the Wizarding World the second that the bushy-haired young woman had screamed in horror, but Harry still felt as if he had failed to protect her even though they had only been following their plan. Heck, Hermione was going to be totally fine! Harry could feel that she was fine through the bond he had with her through the Weasley matriarch. Hermione was pulled from the flames long before they had done any damage to her, and now she could spend her time reading books and relaxing without having to look after Harry and Ron.
Hermione's body was empty, like the discarded skin of a snake, and the magic that had created it couldn't hold on long without being sustained by Hermione herself. So it exploded into a shower or blue and silver and gold sparks that bounced here and there and everywhere before they disappeared too.
Harry took a deep breath and brushed the tears from his cheeks. Safe or not, it was still freaky to watch your best friend 'die' and he needed a couple of minutes to pull himself together before he got to his feet and met Luffy's and Zoro's eyes. He smiled a bit at the utterly devastated looks that the other two were sporting on their faces.
"Don't worry about Hermione, she went home before anything could happen to her." Harry started brushing the sand off his clothes. "She'll be fine, she isn't dead. She has just gone home." He repeated when Luffy looked ready to cry.
"Home?" Zoro repeated, his voice still a bit chocked up though both he and Luffy seemed to be recovering from the entire ordeal at an almost alarming speed.
"Yup, home. If she can come back then we will see her again soon enough, I am certain of it." Harry smiled. "She and I and several others came here by magical means to search for another friend of ours, but we got separated. So we are now all searching for each other, and our magic makes sure that we go home whenever we wish to. At home we have a lot of magic that can help us out if we get too wounded, Hermione has just activated the magic and gone home."
"Well, if you're certain..." Zoro accepted the explanation easily enough.
"So it's a mystery home like you and she are mystery people?" Luffy summarised with a sagely nod.
"You can put it like that, I suppose." Green eyes twinkled merrily at the thought of being a part of a 'mystery people'. He sighed again and stretched a bit before focusing on his two companions again. "Thanks for coming to our aid; you didn't have to do that."
Luffy laughed, back to his usual self. "Hahaha! Don't worry about it! That's what friends do, right?"
"Either way, thank you." He couldn't help but like these two crazy wannabe pirates. They were hard to dislike and they were the first friends that Harry had made in this weird world.
Zoro spoke up next. "So what will you do next? Where will you go?"
"Well..." Harry trailed off in thought before he shrugged. "I'm going to continue searching for my friends, of course, but I have no idea where or how to begin." He could always use the Point Me-spell but that would only give him a general direction to travel in. He needed a boat to travel in and he needed knowledge of the seas in order to survive, and Harry didn't have either one.
Luffy was suddenly looking very eager. "Why don't you join my crew and come with us to the Grand Line?" he demanded more than suggested.
"Join you?" Harry blinked in surprise. Become a pirate and travel around with Zoro and Luffy and whomever else they picked up, going wherever they wanted? It sounded very good. It would be safer and he would certainly cover more ground like that too than if he was on his own. Besides, Harry was more than certain that Sirius Black wouldn't stay as a civilian or join the straight-laced marines. No, Harry's godfather would definitely fit the life of a pirate, and the rest of the D.A. that had come along into this odd world probably weren't going to simply stay in one place either. If the Grand Line was where everything happened, then everyone Harry knew was probably going to head there.
Luffy nodded so much that his hat nearly fell off. "Yeah! Yeah! I want a mystery man in my crew!"
"Mystery man?" he wasn't certain if he should burst out laughing or take offence. He sounded like some stereotypical character from one of those cheap , tacky soft-cover romance novels that Petunia Dursley had been reading in secret.
"Yeah! So come with us!" this time the straw hat did fall off during Luffy's nodding.
Zoro smirked. "You might as well just come with us for he won't give up once he puts his mind to something." He told Harry.
Harry had to smile. Luffy looked almost like a puppy dog as he kept on moving around Harry and tried to make him agree, and Zoro was far too amused at someone else's misfortune of being annoyed by Luffy. They really were a pair of interesting fellows, and Harry had a feeling that life would be very exciting should he choose to turn into a pirate and go with them to the Grand Line.
"Alright, why not? I will join your crew and go with you to the Grand Line and search for my friends along the way." The Boy-Who-Lived smiled and laughed with Zoro when Luffy jumped up and down cheering.
Their moment of levity was broken by a shouted: "Diamond Barrage!" and hard, sharp rocks of purest diamond rained down upon them.
"Protego!" the shield Harry cast covered all three of them, and the sharp diamond rocks bounced off with pings and blue flashes of light.
"Ah, the spinning-top guy is back!" Luffy exclaimed in shock.
"We didn't exactly take care to hide our trail." Harry said.
"He's worried about us stealing his jewels and yet he's throwing precious diamonds at us." Zoro muttered and shook his head as he drew his three swords, placing the hilt of the white sword between his teeth.
"Die! Diamond Spin!" Adámas Dia Mond and the marines were bearing down on them from the forest, their swords were drawn and ready for use. Luffy and Zoro ran to meet them with wide grins on their faces while Harry stayed back and sent spell after spell into the ranks of the marines. He noticed that neither Zoro nor Luffy were aiming to kill their opponents so Harry did the same, using tickling charms, bat-bogey hexes, leck-locker curses and so on to make sure that his victims stayed down. The more Harry used magic while his wand was still fastened to his wrist, the easier it became to use and it also left Harry's hands free to punch any marine that came close enough.
Luffy was the first one who reached the rampaging Adámas Dia Mond and he managed to stop the man's insane spinning by ducking underneath the two blades and punching the man in the stomach. And though the hit was strong enough to send marine lieutenant flying to the ground it obviously hadn't done much real damage. Actually, Luffy seemed more hurt than Dia Mond did.
"Ahh! You're as hard as rock!" the young pirate captain shouted.
"I am harder! I am diamond! I am the hardest type of material in the world! I can get through anything!" Dia Mond shouted back as he attacked again.
"Stupefy!" Harry's red stunner hit Dia Mond in the torso, but it didn't do anything and Luffy had to jump out of the way of another slice-attack. 'Damn it, he has got to have a weak spot!' the green-eyed male thought to himself as he defended himself by forcefully blowing away several marines that had tried to sneak up on him.
Kicking out while in midair, Luffy aimed for Dia Mond's head. Dia Mond grabbed the young captain's feet, but it was too late and the soles of Luffy's sandals connected with Dia Mond's face. Harry and Zoro both easily heard the crack of breaking bones as Dia Mond fell backwards. His nose was bent and broken and it was bleeding, and Harry and Zoro shared a look.
"Aaah! He found the lieutenant's weak spot!" the marines cried out.
"The strongest natural material in the world and the idiot didn't protect his face?" Harry wasn't certain if he was asking or stating it.
"And they confirmed it?" Zoro sounded equally as uncertain as Harry as he nodded towards the panicking marines.
Shaking his head, Harry threw a quick stunner right into Adámas Dia Mond's face. It would ensure that the guy was out for another day or so and it would give him, Luffy and Zoro time to get away from this stupid island and its stupid inhabitants. "Let's just get going. I don't think that the marines will follow us now that their leader is fully down for the count."
Indeed, the marines looked ready to simply run far away and forget that they had ever met up with the trio. They grabbed the body of their fallen lieutenant – he had turned back into a human when he had been knocked unconscious – and dragged him off into the woods and back towards the town, shouting threats and curses behind them.
Luffy laughed. "That was fun!" he grinned.
Zoro sheathed his three swords and smirked. "Hardly worth the effort. They are so weak." He muttered as he headed towards the small boat that he and Luffy had arrived in. "Hey, Luffy, get on board. We're casting off."
The young captain with the straw hat grinned and was on board within a second. "Come on, Harry! It's time to go!" he seemed as excited as ever.
Harry cast one last look in the direction of the town, felt the love and feelings of safety that Mrs Weasley sent through the soul-rope, and smiled as he ran over to help Zoro push the boat through the shallows. As soon as the bottom of the boat didn't drag along the sandy bottom, both Harry and Zoro clambered aboard.
"Viento!" Harry waved his hand towards the sail and it filled out with a strong breeze at once, making the small boat shoot forwards over the waves.
"Yahooo!" Luffy waved his arms in excitement and Harry and Zoro laughed. "Grand Line! Here we come!"
There, it's done. Please tell me what you think.
Yes, this is a repost of chapter 10 from Plotting Bunnies. I decided to make it a series of shorter and longer drabbles. Sporadic updates.
At first I fully intended for Hermione to really die, but then I couldn't make myself go through with it. I also intended to make Adámas Dia Mond want to marry either Harry or Hermione and crave their power, but that didn't happen either. So this is what I ended up with. I hope it isn't too terrible. 'Adámas', 'dia' and 'mond' are, of course, all a play on the word diamond – adámas being the Greek root of the word.
I chose to put all the special attacks and spells in italics just to be consistent. And I hope that the fight with Adámas Dia Mond wasn't too terrible either, but I just couldn't make myself drag it out like in the anime and manga.
And please don't complain about the way that Harry travels to other worlds. I know that it's almost the same way as in several other one-shots here, not to mention countless other stories. However, there are only so many times that one can find a new way to send Harry to another world, so recycling is a must. Just ignore it if it bothers you.
Next chapter will be up very soon.