IMPORTANT: This story will have absolutely no affect on my main story, The Best Friends. I just wanted to do something a little crazier than normal. Enjoy!
Tom bounced on the balls of his feet. He couldn't help that he was excited and all. Wolf had promised that he would be home for that fall and Tom was fully planning on holding him to that. Despite the jokes and general casualness of it all, Tom missed his cranky roommate when the man was away. K-Unit had flown from wherever they'd been to an army base in Scotland before catching a ride on a military transport train to King's Cross Station.
"Tom, honey, calm down," Jack said, a smile breaking onto her face as she eyed the excited teen. Tom instantly stopped bouncing in place but was too excited to take his vacated seat next to Alex on what seemed to be the only bench in the entire place. People were coming and going without regard to anyone else and there was more than a few instances of someone losing control of a luggage cart.
"What are you so excited about?" Alex asked, though all three of them knew he already knew that answer. He was just trying to distract Tom, which was an appreciated effort.
"Once Rey gets here he's gonna take me to that awesome paintball compound," Tom replied. "You know that."
"Hm," was all the ex-spy could say in reply. Jack looked about as distracted as Tom as she eyed the side of a wide arch between platforms nine and ten. In fact, she was downright staring, her eyes narrowed slightly as she concentrated on whatever it was she looking at. Both boys noticed it and looked at the wall themselves but didn't see anything truly spectacular about it.
"What are you looking at?" Alex asked as he nudged Jack with his shoulder.
"Huh?" she grunted distractedly. "Oh! Um, I thought I saw...well, I don't know. Just my eyes playing tricks on me I guess." She smiled at the two teens to let them know everything was okay and they dropped the subject. Then Jack broke into a huge smile and lept up off the bench with a squeal. They turned in time to see her meet Eagle halfway along the platform-both of them were running-and embrace him. The soldier practically picked her up he was hugging her so hard.
"Sometimes I think they're the teenagers," Alex said sarcastically but he looked happy for the pair.
"That's what happens when you fall in love," Tom replied sounding wise and Alex didn't have the heart to call him out on the fact that he was just repeating something Snake had said. Tom liked sounding wise beyond his years; probably because he spent most of his time acting ten years younger than he was.
The two boys saw the rest of K-Unit come into view soon enough. They were going at a much more sedated pace then their exuberant teammate. Tom's excitement flooded back again and he resumed his bouncing. He opened his mouth to shout something-he wasn't ever sure what he was going to say until it was said-but he never got the chance.
The ceiling directly above Tom and Alex exploded in a terrible explosion of light and sound. Alex reacted instantly which was probably what saved Tom's life. The blond grabbed his arm and pulled him down and under the metal bench he had been sitting on not a half a second ago. The station lit up with screams as people fled the area thinking the explosion had come from a bomb.
Tom wasn't sure what had caused the ceiling to explode like that but he knew it was no bomb. He had seen a jet of light smash into the metal beams above them; he knew he had even if it was just from the corner of his eye. There was mass panic and Tom could hardly see anything. Alex was crouched over him protectively, instinctively trying to protect Tom's head from falling debris despite them being under the bench.
What Tom could see though reminded him that he was surrounded by very dangerous, very well-trained people. Jack was rushing back towards him and Alex while K-Unit had their guns drawn and aimed at a group of people not far from the bench. The first thing Tom noticed was that about half of them had red hair. The second thing he noticed was that two of them were still moving. Fighting, Tom's mind told him but it wasn't any kind of fighting he had ever seen. They had sticks for weapons and light was coming out of those sticks as they said funny words he didn't recognize.
"Freeze!" Wolf shouted, his lone command drowning out the screams of panicking civilians and the two boys-for they were boys-with their funny words. Tom didn't notice much after that because as he watched Wolf approach the strange group with their strange weapons his adrenaline started to wear off and he could suddenly feel the pain again.
"Ah!" he cried out and grabbed down at his leg. Alex's attention was instantly back to him and he followed Tom's movements with a well trained eye. Those eyes widened in shock when he saw the piece of large glass that had sliced clean through Tom's well muscled calf and embedded itself in muscle and bone. It wasn't bleeding too bad at the moment but the smallest of movements and Tom felt extreme pain.
"Hang on Tom," Alex said quietly just as Jack reached them and she too saw the injury.
"Hang on sweetheart," she said and gently placed her hand on his back, trying to offer some sort of comfort. They wouldn't attempt to move him until they had the all clear. The injury may be extremely painful but it wasn't quite life threatening yet.
"SAS! FREEZE!" Wolf's command came to them even louder this time and Tom opened his eyes-he hadn't realized he'd screwed them shut against the pain-in time to see Wolf pistol whip a blond boy who fell to the ground unconscious. Eagle had his gun pressed into the face of the other fighter's face; the rest of the group was frozen under the glares of Snake and Fox.
"Drop your weapon and put your hands in the air," Eagle commanded and the boy complied.
Tom could see people rushing towards the soldiers at this point. Most of them were dressed in very odd clothing and Tom thought that maybe they were coming from some sort of convention. His thoughts didn't go much further than that because of the pain and he had to lower his head to the cool concrete floor in order to keep from crying out. Alex, who still had his arm around him from when he'd been protecting him, squeezed Tom's shoulders in silent support.
"Who are you?" a woman screamed and Tom gathered his strength to watch. Despite the pain he was in this was highly interesting and he didn't want to miss it. She was a squat, somewhat heavyset woman with the same red hair as half of the group he'd noticed before.
"SAS," Snake replied and his gun whirled around to cover the sudden onslaught of people. "Freeze! Do not come any closer!" Some of the group stopped their approach but most of them carried on through.
"Freeze!" Wolf shouted again as he too ignored the petrified teenager in front of him to meet the newcomers. "I will shoot to kill!" That got the group's attention and they all froze. Nobody moved for a moment and it wasn't long before Tom could see policemen storming into the station along with firemen and medics.
"Over here!" Jack shouted to one of the medics, waving her arms over her head to get his attention. He instantly came towards them. Wolf turned his attention to the bench for a moment to make sure no one was too badly hurt but he couldn't see much. Tom couldn't see him at all. There were too many people.
"AHHH!" he screamed suddenly when he felt the medic move his leg. His head dropped back down to the floor and he felt himself slam his fist down on the concrete in frustration and pain. Tom didn't pay much attention to what was happening around him. Soon enough he was passed out.
Wolf glared at the odd man in front of him. It hadn't taken him long to find out exactly who those people at the train station had been. He was, however, resisting the knowledge wholeheartedly. Wizards. That was what the old, white bearded man in front of him had said as his fellows had stolen Tom out from under the medic and took him to this...place. The man-wizard-had told him it was a hospital. Wolf had his doubts.
"So you see," the man continued, "It was nothing more than an accident really."
Wolf's glare only intensified at that.
"That accident," he snarled, "could have killed someone. You are extremely lucky that those two boys are alive because if they had been killed I guarantee you, your little Wizards would also have been killed. In an accident, you understand."
The wizard-Dumbledore he'd said his name was-didn't seem to take too kindly to Wolf's threat. Not that he had expected him too.
"What were those two...wizards...even fighting about?" Wolf had a difficult time saying the word 'wizard'. It went against all of his logic. Not to mention he felt absolutely ridiculous saying such a thing. He felt that he was suddenly repeating every crazy thing Tom had ever said. It wasn't very comforting.
"I believe the fight began after a nasty exchange of words concerning a wizarding matter," the old man replied. Wolf raised his eyebrow and turned away to think for a moment. Down the corridor he could see the blond kid he'd knocked unconscious with his two parents. Both of them were glaring death at him, not that Wolf was about to be intimidated. The two didn't look as if they could win a fight with a little girl much less him. But they did have those stupid little sticks. Wands.
"When can I see the kid?" he asked, feeling a little dejected and only wanting to get the boy and get out.
"As soon as the Healers are done with him," Dumbledore replied. "But I would like to speak with you once more before you leave St. Mungo's."
"You may be in danger," the old man said and Wolf turned sharply back towards him. "The young boy you, ah, incapacitated is a member of a very influential Magical family. I need to make sure there are no plans for revenge before you leave."
Wolf nodded and walked away, knowing he was being rude but not caring. He felt ill. A small schoolboy spat had nearly been what killed Tom. It was almost impossible to believe that after all they had been through a couple of teenaged wizards was what almost did the trick. He felt like he was in a Disney movie and he didn't appreciate the feeling. He found his way back to the waiting room where a 'Healer' as they called them was trying to get Alex to drink something out of a vial.
"It will help your headache," the young woman was saying. "It's just a basic Headache Reducer."
"It smells like a jockstrap," Alex replied and Wolf nearly smiled. Eagle had to snort back a laugh. Jack was still talking to the wizard cop (Wolf couldn't remember the official title) as were the other two members of K-Unit.
"I promise you, it will help," she said. Alex looked at the small vial in his hand and slowly raised it to his lips. He made a face at what Wolf presumed to be the smell and then quickly took it away and handed it back to her.
"I'll just suffer," he said and sat back down next to Eagle. The soldier had Jack's purse at his feet and he lifted the large metallic bag onto his lap just as Wolf sat down on the other side of Alex.
"She has to have a bottle of Tylenol in here somewhere," he mumbled as he began rummaging through, but the only thing he found was her birth control which Alex was thoroughly disturbed by.
"Oh! Gross!" he shouted when Eagle withdrew the pills from the bag and he caught sight of them. "That's disgusting!"
"What?" Eagle asked, part amused, part embarrassed. "Did you think we weren't-you know-together?" Despite the severity of the situation they now found themselves in, Wolf couldn't help but be extremely amused at the two.
"I knew you were," Alex admitted. "But that doesn't mean I want proof!" The two descended into a small debate over what constituted as proof of a sexual relationship and eventually the now completely ignored Healer just walked away looking a little miffed.
"Wolf?" All three looked up to see a pink-haired woman in one of those wizarding police outfits and looking just a smidge uncomfortable. The team had all given their code names and Wolf had even written 'Accomplice' on Tom's paperwork which was done on parchment paper, strangely enough. Jack had simply been introduced as Jack. The soldier stood to identify himself and she smiled at him.
"The Healers are requesting that you and your uninjured companions move to the designated Muggle room," she said.
"What," he growled and she seemed a little thrown at the tone, "is a Muggle?"
"Oh!" she exclaimed. "I thought someone would have explained that already."
"Clearly not," he said cutting the girl no slack.
"Oh, well, a Muggle is a non-magical person," she replied.
"And where is this designated room?" he asked.
"On the first floor," she said with a bright smile. "I'll take you down there."
"Excuse me?" she asked, surprised.
"You cannot stay here," a new voice said and Wolf spotted a man he had yet to meet. This one was very tall and was so dark he almost looked purple. Wolf spotted an earring and was forcibly reminded of Tom talking about getting something like that. He hoped the kid was okay. "The presence of Muggles tends to make some patients nervous."
"I don't care," the soldier said and the new man narrowed his eyes at the challenging tone.
"It is hospital policy," he continued. "I know it is inconvenient."
"Inconvenient?" Wolf interrupted. "This has nothing to do with inconvenience. My kid is being treated on this floor so this is the floor I'm on. Get me?"
"Sir," the woman replied but Wolf had already turned his back to her and sat back down. He nodded to Eagle who took the hint to act like the two Magicals weren't still standing there. Alex too was quick on the uptake and he picked up right where he left off.
"I don't want to ever hear you say the word 'condom' in same sentence as 'Jack' again," he snarled.
"Well it's not like I have a special codeword for such things," Eagle retorted. The two wizards-either unwilling to press the issue or unwilling to resort to physical means-left as the somewhat lewd conversation started back up.
"I don't have a codeword either!" Alex exclaimed, offended. Eagle raised his eyebrow at him and continued digging through Jack's bag only now remembering what he had originally been doing with it in the first place. "That was his code!"
"Uh, huh," Eagle replied indulgently even though he knew it to be the truth. "Ah, ha!" With that exclamation of triumph he withdrew what he thought to be a bottle of Tylenol only to find himself holding Midol. "Oh, no, that's not what I wanted. Will Midol do?"
Wolf couldn't help but laugh at Alex's face which clearly told his might-as-well-be guardian that Midol would most certainly not do.
When Wolf finally got to see Tom the day had already passed into night and well into early morning. The soldier entered what he considered to be an outdated hospital room and was greeted with silence. He had been expecting beeping noises and grinding gears just like when he was in any sort of hospital. Apparently wizards had no use for such things.
Tom was awake but he looked pretty dazed and he gazed at Wolf in pure confusion. The man wondered briefly if whatever they'd given him had made him so high he had forgotten who Wolf was. It was a rather disturbing thought and he felt like kicking himself for not demanding to know the methods they were using. But he had assumed he was in a normal hospital and he hadn't been disillusioned until it was a little too late.
"Hey buddy," he said as he sat down on the bed next to his ward. "Do you know where you are?"
Tom nodded his head and blinked slowly. He wasn't smiling which concerned Wolf more than anything. He felt like he was back in that night nearly a year ago when he'd picked the kid up at Brookland in the dead of night. The same night he'd discovered more about Tom Harris than he'd ever thought he could.
"Can you talk?" he asked. It had been a simple wound to the leg. He shouldn't be looking as if he was on the brink of death. If they had been in a normal hospital the kid's wound have been cleaned, stitched, wrapped, and he'd already be home with a system full of vicodin watching cartoons and milking it for all it was worth.
"My throat hurts," he said and Wolf noticed how raspy his voice sounded.
"I kept throwing up what they were giving me," Tom told him. Based off of what he'd seen with Alex and that 'potion' thing it wasn't hard to believe. The stuff looked vile and Wolf felt bad for the kid. It explained why he looked so ill; it was because he had been violently ill.
"How's your leg?" Wolf continued.
"They told me it would be all better by tomorrow," Tom said and Wolf felt his eyebrows soar towards his hairline. That quick? "I know, I was surprised too." The kid paused as he seemed to gather his thoughts. Wolf waited patiently until he finally said, "Is magic really real or were they totally bullshitting me?"
Wolf couldn't help but chuckle at that. "Yeah, kiddo," he said. "Magic is really real." Tom smiled a little for the first time since the explosion.
"That would be so cool if it didn't taste so bad." Wolf laughed a little more openly that time feeling some of his worry slip away. Tom would be fine.
Wolf woke the next morning in the chair next to Tom's bed his feet propped up on the mattress. The first thing he saw was Tom sitting up, looking a little better and picking at a breakfast. There was a Healer bustling about and talking non-stop. The kid looked a little confused about what he was saying and Wolf quickly tuned into what the man was talking about as he uncorked and corked several of those Potions vials.
"We didn't think that you're stomach would be so sensitive to the Potions. We sort of forgot you were a Muggle and most wizards your age don't need the lighter doses so that was our bad I guess. But your stomach should settle by noon, just in time for lunch! I heard that the Minister of Magic was coming today just to meet you and talk to you about what happened at King's Cross. It made quite the news, that incident. I don't think it would have if your guardian and his little friends hadn't hurt the Malfoy boy the way they did but-oh well. What's done is done, right?"
"I'll say," Wolf replied and the man spun around in surprise.
"Oh, I, uh, didn't think you were awake," the Healer said.
"Obviously," Wolf said lowly, his tone conveying that he was not happy with what had just been said. Not that he understood half of it but the man seemed annoying enough for him to be justified in being grumpy towards him. He saw Tom hide a smirk by taking a bite of his eggs. "What did you mean that it was your bad he got so ill?"
"Oh," the man said suddenly looking as if he really wished he hadn't said that. "Well, we forgot that his system would have never have been exposed to Potions before and we gave him the normal doses we would give any wizard in his weight bracket." It was at this point that Wolf saw Harris try to subtly, yet frantically, signal to the man to stop talking.
"Harris," he said sharply and the kid looked at him with wide eyes. "Let the man finish. Eat your breakfast." Tom looked worried for whatever reason and the fact that he was trying to keep Wolf from knowing something made Wolf want to know all the more. He nodded to the Healer to keep going as Tom gingerly took a bite of toast and chewed it slowly.
"Well, anyway, we were lucky the smell of the Potions made him nauseous enough to throw them back up," the man said and Tom looked sick again.
"And what would have happened if he hadn't gotten sick?" Wolf asked expertly hiding his mounting temper and worry. The Healer took his calm tone as a sign that it was safe to continue.
"Well his system probably would have been poisoned and his kidneys likely would have failed," the man said in a tone Wolf considered to not be appropriately apologetic. In fact, he sounded disgustingly chipper.
"Oh," the soldier replied in a light tone that made Tom's eyes widen even more than they already were.
"-and this is Cub," Dumbledore said as he introduced the young teen to the Minister. The blond boy politely shook hands with the man but he did catch the fact that the frumpy looking politician didn't seem to want to touch him. He figured it was because he was still a little dirty from the day before. He'd done the best he could with a hand towel and the bathroom sink but he wasn't a miracle worker.
"Nice to meet you Minister," Alex said and the man smiled at the effort.
"It is nice to meet all of you as well," he said stiffly and nobody believed him. "Tell me again, why are you using codenames?"
"We're officially on the clock," Eagle said but the man didn't seem to get it.
"Once we identified ourselves as SAS we took all professional responsibility of the situation," Snake explained. "In doing so, we are officially on active duty and we use codenames in the field." The man nodded at that seeming to understand at least a little.
"Ah," he said. "Well I am here to discuss some of the legal ramifications of your actions yesterday. We normally would-" But they never found out what the Minister normally did in this situation. A metal tray suddenly came flying out of one the hospital rooms, slamming into the wall with a loud clang and spilling the food it had once held all over the floor. The group turned just in time to see one of the Healers dart out of the room looking terrified and Wolf's shouts hot on his heels.
"Two-bit charlatan! I've had enough of this witch doctor crap, get me a real doctor! Snake!"
"What happened?" Fox asked as he grabbed the Healer's shoulder to stop him from running away.
"He-he just went crazy!" the man exclaimed.
"Why?" Fox persisted knowing that, while easy to anger, Wolf rarely had a temper tantrum for no good reason.
"I was just explaining some of the procedures we used last night and he just went crazy!"
Said man jumped a little at the sudden force Wolf used in shouting his name. He'd never really heard the man sound so angry before. The medic quickly went down the corridor to the kid's room and no sooner had he crossed the threshold then Wolf was descending on them in the hallway.
"You'd better let him go Fox before I kill him," Wolf growled and his teammate let the poor Healer go. The scared man ran away as fast as he could without completely losing his dignity. He didn't really succeed but the effort was a gallant one.
"Wolf what the hell are you doing?" Eagle asked, confused at the man's sudden harshness.
"Do you know what that wizard just told me?" the darker soldier asked making the word 'wizard' sound like a horrible insult. Eagle just raised his eyebrows in response, clearly not up for a guessing game. "He told me that the witch doctors 'forgot' proper medical procedure and nearly poisoned the poor kid. He looks like crap." The last part was half shouted and Wolf took off down the hallway again, suddenly deciding that he was not done with the man who had just fled from him. Eagle watched him go with surprise before he and Fox followed a half-running Alex into Tom's room. He only barely registered the fact that Dumbledore and the Minister were following.
"-still feel sick," Tom was saying when they got there. Snake was looking into his eyes and feeling for a fever.
"What was Wolf talking about?" Fox asked the boy. "About you being poisoned?"
"Almost," Tom corrected forcefully. "Almost poisoned."
"That doesn't make it that much better," Snake said. "But you look fine."
"I am fine," the boy said his arms crossed. "I tried to get that stupid fake-doctor to shut up but he was determined to die today. Where's Wolf?"
"Killing the fake-doctor," Alex replied but Tom wasn't much interested in the answer. He was busy looking at the two strangers like they were some strange sort of meat.
"Who are you?" he asked them directly, almost rudely.
"I am Cornelius Fudge, Minister of Magic," the frumpy man said with an imperious tone that Tom instantly took as a challenge. The others saw the glint in his eye but made no move to stop him from doing something crazy. That was Wolf's job and he was currently preoccupied.
"I am Sir Sputnik," the boy replied and Eagle snorted. Only Dumbledore seemed to hear it though.
"Captain of the Brookland Guard."
"Oh, what is the Brookland Guard?" the Minister asked clearly having no idea that Tom was yanking his chain. They had all been told that the two worlds were nearly completely cut off from each other and thus they were unlikely to find a witch or wizard who would know about half of what they were talking about. It was why it had taken nearly four hours-longer than it should have-to debrief them. The wizard cops had no idea what a 9 mm Luger was. Eagle had even heard one of the them say firelimb instead of firearm. It would have been funny had he not said it with complete confidence; that just made it sad.
"An elite group of Juju Bees whose sole purpose is to defend the country from the mighty and terrible Grey Man," the kid replied in all seriousness. His tone sounded grave as if the existence of such a thing was a terrible burden. Snake simply shook his head. Eagle was trying his hardest not to laugh as was Fox and Alex.
"Accomplice, quit confusing the wizards," Jack said as she entered the room. Tom had no idea where she had been but based on the steaming cup in her hand he could take a fair shot at guessing. "Hi, I'm Jack."
The woman had yet to meet either of the two men and introductions and pleasantries were quickly exchanged.
"So when do we get to leave?" the American asked still smiling pleasantly.
"Leave?" the Minister asked.
"Yeah, you know," Alex continued. "When can we go home?"
"Oh not until the courts are done with you," Fudge replied and Alex was a little taken aback by the harsh tone.
"Courts?" Fox asked stepping closer which put him right next to Jack.
"Yes, the Wizengamot is investigating the situation," the man said. "They are very concerned over the brutality experienced by the young Mr. Malfoy."
"Who?" Eagle asked, drawing a blank on the name.
"The blond kid that Wolf took down," Fox told him, arms crossed and slipping into full on MI6-mode as Tom called it. "That boy exploded a roof, nearly killed two innocent people, and caused a mass panic in a major transit zone. We were completely within our rights to do what we did."
"It is your right to bludgeon the boy?" Fudge asked. Dumbledore opened his mouth to say something-probably intervene based on the look on his face-but Fox continued before he could speak.
"He wasn't bludgeoned," the soldier said. "He was given fair warning and ample opportunity to comply with the orders he was given. He did not. That is what we call resisting arrest. He was handled appropriately. Besides, a little bump on the head might remind him not to start death matches in the middle of crowded train stations."
"That is your official position on the matter?" Fudge asked.
"It is," Fox replied.
"Then we shall see you in court," the man said and then walked out of the room leaving only Dumbledore behind. Fox rounded on him immediately.
"You told us that you would take care of all this crap," he snarled at the old man who didn't react.
"And I will," the man replied. "But there are politics playing here and it is not as simple as you may think."
"I don't care how simple it may or may not be," Fox continued looking nearly as angry as Wolf. "We aren't apart of...whatever this is. Take care of it or I'll have to drag in our organizations." Alex winced at the threat. That would be long and drawn out. It would also probably end with Blunt staging a coup to get rid of the loathsome little Minister. The ex-spy just knew the two of them wouldn't like each other. Not that Blunt liked anyone but still, it wouldn't end well.
"There is nothing they would be able to do," Dumbledore maintained. "They are not recognized in this world."
"I seriously doubt that will stop them," Fox replied. "They'll probably welcome it in fact. They won't have anything to answer for."
And wasn't that a scary thought.
Dumbledore had ample evidence that they were in danger. Not that Wolf understood half of it. The old man had rambled on about pensieves and something named Fawk or Faux or Feather duster. He couldn't really understand it all. He may have been trained to take in a great deal of detail at once but this was beyond his training. It was like trying to learn a whole another language with these people. But he was able to understand enough to know that they were on red alert.
He and Dumbledore had gathered all of them into Tom's room. The old man had started to explain the situation but blood feuds and Death Eaters meant nothing to anyone. Wolf cut across him.
"We've managed to find ourselves another enemy," he said authoritatively and all eyes swiveled to him. "They'll use Magic only, they don't understand anything from our...world, and we aren't entirely sure who they are. Until the fervor from the train station debacle dies down we're on red alert. Dumbledore thinks we'll be safest at his school which doubles as a military strong point. It's up in Scotland, it's isolated, and we'll be around Magical allies. Nobody let their guard down. Jack, Accomplice, Cub, you're to stay with one of us at all times. No wandering off. Everybody gather your things. We'll be stopping by our homes for ten minutes each to get what we need. We're going to be escorted by some of Dumbledore's people. We leave in five."
"Yes, sir," they each said, mumbled, or thought. Not even Tom was stupid enough to disobey Wolf's orders during a red alert.
Wolf could tell the stumpy, half-missing man was impressed by the swiftness with which they moved. His thoroughly creepy, magical eye had been rolling back and forth in his head which made the soldier almost feel ill. The man had overheard him lecturing his people about constant vigilance and he couldn't help but be reminded of the Sergeant up at Brecon Beacons who had once screamed something similar. It gave the man more than a few brownie points in Wolf's book.
Knowing that they would be experiencing some sort of red alert at some point in the future all of them had been prepped for the moment. They were in and out of their respective homes in five minutes tops before they were piling back into an obviously magical car as it did things Wolf had only heard Tom spout out randomly. Wolf left the kid in the car as he went into their flat and into his closet. The boy's leg was nearly completely healed but it was still painful as he had thrown up all the medication they'd given him. A different Healer than the one Wolf had chased, had informed him that Tom would likely feel ghost pains for the next week or two.
Wolf had known the boy had a pretty good pain threshold but he hadn't expected it to be this high. He grabbed the large duffle bag from the floor that had three sets of clothes for each of them, toiletries, first aid kit, their passports, and six hundred pounds in cash and traveler's checks. Knowing they'd be in Scotland and that even in early fall it could get cold, he also grabbed their coats. He then grabbed the key around his neck and unlocked the metal gun case hanging on his wall. He took an extra gun and several boxes of ammunition and cleaning supplies. They all went into a separate canvas bag. Leaving the two bags and the coats in the hall for the moment, he went into the bathroom. He rummaged around in the medicine cabinet and found his half full bottle of vicodin left over from his last shoulder injury a few months ago. He pocketed it. He also pulled a few cans of Tom's favorite off brand energy drink from the fridge and put those in the clothes bag.
He was back in the car in less than five minutes. He put everything in the boot but did pull out one of the drinks and made sure the pills were in his jacket pocket. All four members of K-Unit were still in their army fatigues which had attracted a fair amount of attention at Mungo's. The pink haired lady he'd met before at the hospital turned around to look at all of them in the back. They were surprisingly not cramped though Tom had bunched himself up between Wolf and Jack, relishing the closeness. He'd always been a tactile person, the exact of opposite of Wolf.
"You guys are efficient packers," she said not sure how to politely verbalize her curiosity.
"We all have grab-n-go bags," Wolf told her.
"Grab-n-go bags?" the older man asked.
"What are those?" asked the driver, a red haired man Wolf had nearly shot back at the train station when they had been rushed by a crowd of what he now knew to be Wizards.
"They're emergency bags," Snake told them. "We keep them packed at all times in case we ever to have leave with no warning and no time to pack."
"Ingenious," the old man, Moody if he remembered correctly, replied. He sounded excited to have them there. The only reply he got was the pop of the can as Wolf opened it and passed it to Tom along with a vicodin for his pain.
"I only get one?" the kid asked, hissing through his teeth.
"You only need one," Wolf told him. Tom shrugged and popped the pill into his mouth, washing it down with his disgusting energy drink.
Hogwarts was in a castle apparently. It surprised Wolf though he knew it shouldn't of. The car pulled right up to the front door and he saw several of what he supposed were teachers and students gathered on the front steps. There were also a whole crowd of students watching them through the second story windows.
He helped Tom from the car. The kid was a little high not being used to vicodin and could barely talk straight much less walk straight. He wasn't in anymore pain though so that was a bonus. Wolf had also discovered that Tom was worse when on medication. No wonder everyone was reluctant to give it to him. Wolf could normally understand at least some of what Tom was saying but now he couldn't understand anything.
Dumbledore came down to greet him while the others piled out of the car and began to unload the boot.
"Ah, Wolf," he said as if he was greeting an old friend he hadn't seen in years. Wolf didn't appreciate the tone. He may be right at home but they were in hiding. "I trust there were no problems?"
"None," the soldier replied.
"We passed a herd of purple McJuJu but Wolf didn't see them," Tom told the man and then leaned in towards him as if to tell him a secret. "He's not Magical enough," the kid whispered and then held up a finger to his lips.
"Ignore him," Wolf said while the old man smiled indulgently. "He's on some really strong medication."
"Oh, what did the Healers give him?" Dumbledore asked curiously.
"Nothing," Wolf said. "I gave him something."
"Ah," the man said knowing not to press any further. "Well, I would like to introduce you to a few of my Professors. This is Severus Snape, Minerva McGonagall, and Charity Burbage. All three have offered their services should you need any help."
Wolf opened his mouth to thank them but Tom interjected again.
"I see Pixie Stix!" he shouted suddenly, alarmed. He eyes were darting back and forth and he looked ready to bolt. Wolf quickly wrapped his arms underneath Tom's armpits and around his chest preparing to hold him back. The last thing they needed was Tom running off and drowning himself in the lake. Wolf would never be able to explain that to his poor mother.
"Cub, what is he talking about?" Wolf groaned, exhausted.
"I don't know," Cub said. "That's no code word I was ever told about."
"Awesome," Wolf grumbled under his breath before addressing the old man. "Can we just get to where we're bunking? The kid really needs some sleep."
"Of course," the man said sympathetically casting a sad look to the half crazed teenager Wolf was holding. The soldier looked down when he heard a snore and saw that Tom had fallen asleep. He rolled his eyes and sighed. This had to be one of the worst days of his life.
Tom slept solidly through the night. They were given one set of rooms between them which Burbage felt the need to apologize for but Wolf preferred it. He could keep an eye on everyone much easier this way. They only had four beds in their suite and two of those were only twins. Snake and Fox grabbed those; Jack and Eagle got one of the two doubles as did Alex and Tom. Wolf didn't sleep much that night. He dozed a bit on the Victorian couch in their sitting room but that was all.
Around seven the next morning, he heard a tentative knock on the door. Wolf dropped the book he'd found on magical creatures on the coffee table and went to answer it. The book read like one of Tom's comic books and he found himself more than a little out of his depth. He opened the door and found one of those students-the wizarding students.
"Hello," she greeted.
"Hi," he replied blankly wondering what she wanted.
"My name is Hermione Granger, sir," she said and stuck out her hand.
"Wolf," he replied and took her hand in a firm shake. "What do you want?" He knew it would probably seem rude to her but he hadn't been able to sleep and he was more than a little shaken at this new development in his life.
"Headmaster Dumbledore asked me to help you find the Great Hall for breakfast," she told him. "Also, I'm a Muggleborn so I'll be able to answer any questions you may have."
"Oh," he replied. What was a Muggleborn? "What's a Muggle again? They told me but..."
"A Muggle is non-magical person," she replied with a bright smile. "And a Muggleborn is a witch or wizard born to non-magical parents. There's also Half-bloods and Purebloods which-"
"Just come in," he said, cutting her off before she could get going. He didn't care. She looked a little startled and maybe a little putout but she followed him into their sitting room. Wolf then proceeded to bang on doors and spring them open with a shouted command of, "Everybody up! Breakfast in five!"
Tom and Jack were the only ones who had any significant problem with waking up in such a fashion. Jack was fine once she was actually up and moving about but being awoken by what sounded like a very angry army man threw her off. Tom was still sleeping off his potions induced illness and the vicodin Wolf had given him. He also wasn't much of a morning person.
"C'mon Tom, it's time to get up," Wolf said as he shook the kid awake.
"Mm, umph, frogs," was the only answer he got for nearly three minutes. But the kid did eventually get up, his hair going every which way and his eyes bloodshot and bleary. Wolf had definitely seen him look better.
"You alright Tom?" he asked as the kid fumbled with the snap on his jeans.
"Yeah," he replied. "Can I have another pill?"
"No," Wolf laughed not surprised that the boy wanted more. Despite making everyone else miserable with his ramblings Tom had probably felt great. "C'mon, you need to eat." It didn't take long for them to make it down to what Hermione called the Great Hall and into the seats he could tell were squeezed into the teacher's section of the dining hall.
Students stared at them as they took their seats and the teachers didn't seem much inclined to greet them enthusiastically. Although Wolf did end up sitting next to Burbage who was friendly enough. Tom and Alex however, had managed to grab seats next to a squat woman dressed almost entirely in pink. Wolf felt like he was looking at a walking bottle of Pepto Bismol.
"How was your night?" Burbage asked. "Any problems?"
"No," Wolf replied, trying not to be too rude but also trying not to give her an opening to a longer conversation. "There were no problems."
"Oh, good," she replied sounding relieved. "Just let me know if you need anything while you're here."
Wolf thanked her and continued his meal. On the other end of the table Tom and Alex were doing what Tom and Alex did.
"Twenty quid says you won't," Alex said quietly so as not to tip off the scowling Pepto-lady to his left. Tom glanced up from his eggs and toast to follow his friend's gaze down towards one of the tables. He saw a mop of unruly dark hair and glasses. It was one of those dueling kids; the ones that had brought down the ceiling on them. Tom smirked.
"Thirty quid says I will," he countered.
"Deal," the blond agreed hiding his own smirk behind a goblet (awesome!) of a really sweet tasting juice Tom couldn't identify. Alex grimaced at the taste and put the cup back down on the table searching for some water. Tom just sat back and planned. What to do? What to do?
It didn't take the two boys long to find a way to slip away from Wolf's prying eyes. By mid-day all of them were more or less fed up with each other and had darted off to do something not in the general vicinity of each other. Jack opted to sleep the day away and had been in bed for hours napping on and off. Fox and Eagle had joined Wolf in the living room to look through the magical books they'd managed to find in their rooms, pouring over them for some kind of clue as to what they dealing with. Tom and Alex and managed to coerce Snake into joining them and therefore were not entirely disobeying Wolf's orders.
The three of them went on a walk through the castle early that afternoon to see what they could see and stretch Tom's leg muscles a bit. At least, that was what they'd told Snake they were doing. They were really on the lookout for the two boys that had nearly killed them in the train station. Tom wanted a word and Alex wasn't about to miss it.
However, when they got to a particular corridor they heard the distinct sounds of a Bon Jovi song. Tom's eyebrows crinkled in confusion knowing that this was an odd occurrence even though he had only been in the Magical world for a few days.
"Do you hear Bon Jovi?" he asked his two companions. Alex nodded and so did Snake.
"C'mon," the man said, taking the lead. He stopped at a door a little further down and when the two boys stepped up beside him they saw a class of kids around their age, listening to Bed of Roses on a beat up CD player. Tom was surprised; he'd been told his electronics wouldn't work in Hogwarts. Their presence in the doorway didn't go unnoticed for long and Professor Burbage greeted them enthusiastically as the song came to an end.
"Well, hello!" she squealed and the entire class turned to look at them.
"Uh, we heard Bon Jovi," Tom said by way of greeting. "Thought electronics didn't work in Hogwarts?"
"It's been charmed to function normally," she replied off-handedly. "Come in! Join us! We were just going over some of the musical tastes of today's Muggles."
"Ah," Alex said. "Got any Rolling Stones?" Tom rolled his eyes. One day Alex would have the musical tastes of someone who didn't belong in the seventies.
"Sorry?" she asked, eyebrows crinkling in confusion.
"The Rolling Stones," Snake repeated. "You know, Sympathy for the Devil, You Can't Always Get What You Want?" Burbage still didn't seem to understand.
"What about Kanye West?" Tom asked. "His new album was just released."
"I bought that by the way," Alex said knowing Tom would want to download it to his iPod as soon as he could.
"I still don't know who you're talking about," Burbage said sounding sad. "The only music we have is what a past student donated to us." She held up a CD case. Tom crossed the room to take it and began flipping through the music they had. He shook his head.
"Dude," he said. "They have ABBA and Blondie but they don't have Rolling Stones. Oooo, B.O.C!" Tom opened the case of the CD player and exchanged the discs. After pressing play and then the fast forward button the sounds of Burnin' For You began to fill the classroom. The other two non-Magicals soon joined him at the front of the room to flip through the CDs. Three hours and two class periods later, they were still in what they'd discovered was the Muggle Studies classroom debating the cultural contributions of bands like Pink Floyd, Nirvana, U2, and some of the more obscure bands Alex was able to pull out of his butt seemingly at random.
Burbage was utterly fascinated and she seemed content to just let her classes observe them talking. But then Tom and Alex descended into a debate as to what truly constituted a worthy werewolf movie. The only thing they really agreed on was that werewolves were not present in Twilight-a movie Jack had forced them to see. Those were skin walkers at best.
"And vampires do not have glitter infused skin," Tom ranted. Those movies had disturbed him thoroughly and he was glad to have an excuse to rail against them. "I swear, whose going to take an undead disco ball seriously?" Alex snorted at that and Snake could barely hold his own mirth in. Most of their conversation had gone over the heads of everyone who'd passed through the room in the last three hours but they didn't seem to care.
"Absolutely no one," Snake indulged.
"Exactly!" Tom exclaimed, hands going every which way.
"And I'll tell you another thing," Tom continued not having heard the small, fake cough. Alex and Snake had noticed however, and they glanced at the squat woman standing in the doorway. "Why does no one else think its creepy that two hundred year old men are hanging out in high schools? Can you say pedo?"
This time Tom's attention was caught by the much more forceful interruption.
"I have a cough drop if you need it," the boy said to the woman and she glared at him. The two of them had met briefly at breakfast and had taken an immediate dislike to each other.
"Professor Umbridge!" Burbage exclaimed, suddenly looking nervous. "Can I help you?"
"I am here to inspect your classes," the woman said.
"Oh," Burbage replied. "Yes, come on in. Welcome." Snake sensed the sudden change in atmosphere that came with this woman and subtly and firmly signaled for the two boys to leave.