Happy (belated) Thanksgiving to everyone who celebrates it! I apologize for the wait (I think I spent about a total five days typing this), but things have been picking up school-wise with play practice and just a lot of stuff.
Before we get started, I wanted to clear a couple things up for an anonymous reviewer (and those of you who might be lost as well):
Yes, I know Dick Grayson's birthday is in March. Harry Potter's, however, is in July, and when I mixed the characters together, the birthdate got switched. Call it what you will, he got Harry Potter's birthday, eyes, and sometimes he has his hair, but he has Dick Grayson's non-glasses (we'll say he wears contacts), Robin, Bruce, etc. The same for Wally. He has Ron's birthday (but that was luck of the draw when he got taken in) and (most of) his looks, but Wally's heart and soul. (I only say 'most of' because whenever I think about Wally and Dick in this story, they don't look like how I imagine Harry and Ron being).
Hope that helped some! One last note – the class schedules are going to seem weird. I'm sorry about that, but that's how it ended up. I got all the times nice and done (eight class hours in a day with a break in the morning and afternoons), then tried to do the classes. When I looked in the books…well, the classes don't meet every day, and sometimes there's double periods, and they don't have classes with the same house for everything (like they might have DADA with Slytherin, but they then have Charms with Hufflepuff, and then Transfiguration with Ravenclaw). So, I don't think I got everything done right (with regards to how many free periods they get, but those will be filled third year), but at least no one overlaps because I did all the schedules to make sure.
And I know, in the book they didn't have potions until Friday. Well, that left them with two periods of potions a week (since it was a double period), which didn't seem right. The only thing I could think was that it didn't start on Monday, but when I looked, September 1 was a Sunday, and September 2, when they would have started school, was a Monday. Anyway, just be aware that classes aren't like they are said to be in the books.
Now that you're probably sick of my rambling, enjoy the chapter!
September 2, 1991
Wally West had always heard the saying 'Let sleeping dogs lie.'
To his knowledge, there has never been one about best friends.
So it was with great pleasure that, at 6:00 A.M. on September 2, he flung open the curtains surrounding Dick Grayson's bed to jump on him and give him an early wake-up call. There was just one problem.
There was no Dick Grayson in the bed.
Wally frowned. Sure, his friend was an early riser, even on the weekends, but never when he didn't have to get up before seven. Late-night Gotham crime runs had given his friend an appreciation for five hours a night, six if he could pull it off.
It was only with the cackle of his friend's laugh (and it was really creepy, Wally had to admit. Dick could give storybook witches a run for their money) that Wally remembered that one Dick Grayson had gone to bed at ten with the rest of them, and was probably wide awake at six in the morning. He made an executive decision and skidded out of the way using his speed, narrowly avoiding the water balloons Dick had left as a morning gift.
He forgot that the dark-haired boy's revenge was nothing if not thorough, and received a water balloon to the head, as did their other three roommates.
Coughing and spluttering filled the room, and the cries of four water-logged boys had the redheaded prefect from last night (a real Weasley, if Wally remembered his name right) running in wearing his red and gold pajamas.
"What is going on in here?" he asked, sounding slightly imperious in his tone. "It is six in the morning, I hope you realize, and on the first day of classes, too! Really, what-"
"Lighten up, Perce," another redhead said, coming up to stand next to the prefect. "The ickle Firsties are just having some fun."
"Yeah," his twin said, standing on the other side. "Whoever did this has got class – he got everyone, the room included!"
"Though this trick is a little tame, don't you think, Gred?"
"Why, so it is, Forge. We may have to show these impressionable young children just how to prank."
"You will do no such thing!" Prefect Weasley seemed to swell as he moved to hustle his brothers (for who else could they be, with all the red hair?) out of the room. "When Mum hears about this-"
"Did they just call this tame?" Dick asked, throwing a towel at Wally. "Seriously?"
"It's not exactly one of your best, you have to admit," Wally replied, scrubbing at the water in his pajama top. "We'll just have to show them what a real prank is."
"I was thinking Plan 208-C, actually, but yours might be good for an appetizer."
"Appetizer? That's a grade-A plan!"
The boys gathered their things for a shower, ignoring the incredulous looks Dean Thomas and Seamus Finnegan, as they had introduced themselves last night to be, were giving them, and the slightly fearful ones Neville shot at them.
Breakfast was a rowdy affair that started at 7:30 and ran until nine. It was early, but already it seemed that most of the student body had arrived. Students talked loudly, comparing schedules the teachers were trying to hand out. Wally gaped in amazement.
"Is that all you ever think about?" a voice behind them asked. Wally glanced over his shoulder to see Hermione standing there. "Honestly."
"Well, I have a…high metabolism," he said, hesitating only slightly before coming up with the phrase he wanted.
She narrowed her eyes at him. "Hmmm," was all she said before stalking off to the end of the table. Dick started after her, but Wally grabbed his robe sleeve and pulled him to sit closer to the twins.
They glanced up as the two first years sat down a few seats away. "Say, Fred, aren't those some of the ickle Firsties who were causing a disruption this morning?" one asked.
"I do believe they are, George, I do believe they are," his twin replied, and as Wally loaded his plate with eggs, he could see them scrutinizing the duo.
"Can we help you?" Dick asked, feigning disinterest as he bit into a piece of bacon. Wally could just see a grin on his friend's face, hidden from the two redheads since his head was turned to one side.
"No, no," one (Wally thought it was Fred, but he wasn't sure) said, waving a hand airily. "Just a thing of curiosity, you know. Nothing to be helped."
"Can't say I have any business, really," the other, George, said, buttering a piece of toast without a care in the world. "Well, perhaps an explanation of what you used to hold the water?"
Dick's face conveyed a raised eyebrow at Wally in hidden confusion, which he himself didn't bother to hide. "I'm sorry?"
The twins abandoned their pretenses at nonchalance. "What was that that had the water in it? It looked like those bloono-thingies our dad has, but, well, we're not sure."
"Yeah, it was a water balloon," Wally supplied. "You've never heard of them?"
George shook his head. "Nope. We don't really have much experience with all things Muggle, if you know what I mean."
"I have an idea," Dick murmured. "And how dare you call my morning prank tame?"
"It was simply that. Really, water being poured onto someone? Not exactly the worst you could do, especially on the first day."
"Our big prank isn't until the end, of course, but still-"
"One must have standards when starting pranks. And our rule is…"
"No easy pranks on someone we've already pranked!" they finished together.
"And it seems you've already pranked your companion many times, judging from his reaction," Fred added.
Wally was about to reply when a flurry of wings invaded their conversation.
Hundreds, no, thousands of owls flooded the Great Hall, the noise from the students dampened by their hooting and the sound of wingbeats. Wally glanced across the hall, eyes landing on Malfoy and what looked like a hawk – he was waving around a box, so Wally assumed that he had gotten candy.
He and Dick were surprised when an owl landed between them, two letters and a package tied to it. Dick pulled off the string holding the letters while Wally untied the box. One of the letters was handed to him, and he scanned it, a small smile worming its way across his face.
Your uncle and I thought you might be a little homesick (yes, you've only been gone a day, but you're on the other side of the world!), so we've sent you a little care package. None of those chemistry things you're so enamored with – heaven only knows we need another 'accident' like the one you copied from Flash's accident! – but some cookies and things.
The house is lonely without you, but for once it's peaceful! No explosions, just quiet. Be sure to write back, and don't hog all the sweets, they're for you AND Dick!
Love, Aunt Iris and Uncle Barry
On the bottom was another scribbled note, this one in his uncle's writing.
Hey, sport, I know your aunt said we didn't send any of this stuff, but when I was taking it to Bruce, I snuck a few minor chemicals in. Don't tell Iris – what she doesn't know won't hurt her, but if she knows, she might hurt me! –Uncle Barry
Wally laughed, setting the letter aside and tearing open the brown wrapping. True to form, his Aunt Iris had sent at least three dozen cookies of varying kinds, a few cupcakes, and a pie. Iris West-Allen had an affinity for baking, and it showed whenever she packed something for her super-speeded nephew or husband. Also tucked into a corner were a few of Wally's chemicals. Nothing on its own was remarkable, but when mixed…
Well, there'd be a few new explosions around the castle.
Dick looked a little more serious after reading his own letter from Bruce, but he looked eagerly at the box. "You're sharing, right?" he asked, looking over the selection.
Instead of answering, Wally pushed the box closer. "If I don't, I'd be going against Aunt Iris, and I really don't want to find out if she can make it here," he added, hoping that he really was only joking. Dick snorted, taking one of the peanut butter cookies and closing his eyes.
"I love your aunt's cooking," he said around the mouthful. "Only Alfred's cooking is better than hers."
Wally smiled, already finished with his second cookie. "So what'd Bruce want?" he asked, trying to sound casual as he shoved the chemicals into his bag.
Dick swallowed, looking a little lost. "Joker's out again," he murmured, trying to stay quiet. "I should be there."
"Dude, you'd have to be there, like, right now in order to help, 'cause they're hours behind us. I don't think the professors are going to let you get away with skipping classes in the first year, let alone the first week."
Dick glanced just beyond him, and Wally looked to see the twins had been accosted by a couple of their friends, and, when Wally checked, no one was close to them. Dick continued, "I know. But still, he shouldn't have to deal with all that on his own. I could be helping-"
"By being bait?" Wally asked dryly. "Dick, Batman protected the city for six years without you, and does it at least once a week when you're stuck doing homework. He'll be fine."
Dick still looked a little worried, but they were interrupted by the arrival of Professor McGonagall with their schedules. Once she had moved on to the next knot of students, the boys put their heads together.
"This…looks really weird," Wally said finally. "Two classes before a break, two classes after that, lunch, two more classes, break, and the last two classes with half an hour before dinner."
"And we don't even have all the classes every day," Dick said, pointing. "Look, Charms, Transfiguration, then double Herbology, two free periods, and Defense Against the Dark Arts today, then tomorrow starts with a free period, History of Magic, two free periods, Defense Against the Dark Arts, Potions, Charms, and Transfiguration."
"Then we don't have Herbology again until Wednesday, Astronomy during the last period with a practical at midnight…is this seriously the schedule?"
Dick shook his head. "If it isn't, we're in deep trouble then. But we get ten minutes between classes, so at least we have time to get lost and then find the class before we're late."
"Do we get a map?" Wally asked, only slightly joking.
"Charms is on the fourth floor, it says so right here," Dick mused. "We have ten minutes as it is, so we should probably run back to the dorm, get our books, and head for the fourth floor."
"Oh, and if we get lost, we can ask the portraits for help, right?" Wally asked sarcastically, closing the box from his aunt. It had been a shock for him, since he still wasn't quite sure magic existed, to find that the portraits could talk to them.
"But of course, my skeptical sidekick," Dick said, smirking and dodging Wally's wild swing. He laughed, racing for the stairs.
For two superheroes, one who could boast he survived the streets of Gotham for almost three years, the other with superspeed, they sure couldn't follow directions very well. Dick reflected on this as they burst into the Charms classroom, late. Granted, it was only a minute, when Dick checked his watch, but they were still late.
"Ah, yes, good morning, gentlemen!" the teacher, a tiny man who stood on at least three books to see over his desk, squeaked. "Since it's your first day, a little tardiness will not affect you or your house; just don't make a habit of it."
From her seat near the front, Hermione glared at them. There was an open spot next to her, and one next to Neville. Dick slid in gratefully next to the other boy, leaving Wally to sit next to their bushy-haired friend.
"Hey, Neville," Dick said, barely panting from running. Bruce's endurance training was paying off. "What have we missed?"
"Nothing yet," he whispered back, looking at the table top. "Professor Flitwick's just going over the syllabus. He hasn't even taken roll yet."
Dick glanced at Hermione and Wally, who were having an argument in whispers, before looking at Flitwick. "He's kinda short, isn't he?"
"I've heard from my Gran that he's part goblin," Neville said, looking up for the first time since Dick and Wally came in.
"Well, sorry that we got lost!" Wally whispered harshly to Hermione, drawing Dick's attention to them. "We're not superhuman!"
Dick suppressed a snort. He might not be superhuman, but Wally was. He missed Hermione's reply, but Wally gave a sharp retort of, "Of course! Why didn't we think of that? Oh, that's right, because we left ten minutes early so we wouldn't be late!"
Neville looked at Dick, slightly fearful. "Are they OK?" he asked.
He patted the round-faced boy on the back. "I highly doubt it. I will be very surprised if they don't at least date later in life."
The first Potions class of the year was on Tuesday, right after the class with Quirrell and the Slytherins. Wally grimaced as he saw they would be sharing the class with Slytherin, again.
"Tuesdays are going to be so cheerful," he murmured to Dick. "We get to have two classes back-to-back with Malfoy."
"That happened yesterday, too," Dick pointed out, threading his way between the crowds of students to the stairs to the dungeons.
"Well, that was a double period, that doesn't count."
"Since when doesn't it count?" Dick stopped to look at his friend, amazement apparent on his face.
"Since I said so."
"Whatever," Dick muttered, turning around. "Come on, we're going to be late."
As it turned out, they weren't late, but they were just barely there.
"Messrs. Grayson and West, how kind of you to join us so promptly," Snape sneered, but as far as Wally could tell, he didn't sound too angry.
"Sorry, Professor, we got slightly caught up. It won't happen again." The tone of Dick's voice, polite when he didn't seem to mean it, showed that he was in 'Alfred's Manor-Party Etiquette' mode, as Wally liked to call it.
"See that it doesn't," Snape said, turning to stalk to the front of the classroom. Dick closed the door behind them, and they took the last open desk.
"Put your wands away and listen. You are here to learn the subtle and exact art of potion-making," Snape began softly. He didn't need to be loud to keep the class in line – the older students had warned all of them about how Snape was. "As there is little foolish wand-waving here, most of you will no doubt think this is not magic. I do not expect you to understand the beauty of a simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids running through human veins that bewitch the mind and ensnare the senses. I can teach every single one of you to brew fame, bottle glory, and stopper death…that is, if you are truly interested, and not one of the mindless I usually teach."
No one in the room dared to talk, and Wally himself hardly dared to breathe. This was the man who had come to them, him and Dick, to give them a chance to come here, and he had made a joke of it. This was a class he could excel in, he knew. It was science. Of course, it helped that he had used the ability to speed-read his Potions textbook during their fourth-period free time, and despite him not retaining much of after a few hours, he could still remember quite a bit of it.
"Mr. West," Snape's silky voice said, drawing him from his internal debate. "Perhaps, as you have seen fit to daydream through roll, you can answer a few questions. What would I get if I added powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?"
Hermione's hand jerked into the air, and he felt a stirring of resentment. He knew the answer, knew it had been on the very first page. What had it been called, though?
"Um…if I remember correctly, sir," he said, stalling slightly for time, "isn't it, um, the Draught of Living Death, a sleeping potion?"
"A question or an answer, Mr. West?"
Wally swallowed. "Answer, sir," he said. What was the worst that could happen if he got it wrong?
"If you are paying attention, you will find that Mr. West is correct. The Draught of Living Death is a very powerful sleeping draught that mimics the look of death. Why are none of you copying that down?"
Wally let out a breath he didn't know he'd been holding. Dick shot him a quick grin, and he gave a half-smile in return.
The rest of the class went all right, in Wally's opinion. Snape hadn't asked anymore questions, to Hermione's obvious disappointment. He had put the instructions to what he called a simple potion on the board and told them to get to work. He and Dick had just taken their potion off the flame and were about to add the porcupine quills when an odd hissing filled the air. He and Dick shared a quick glance before diving under the table. Both had been in near-misses to explosions to not take precautions.
It turned out for the best. When Wally poked his head back out, it was to a scene of destruction. Neville, his partner Seamus, and the two goons of Malfoy's were clutching their face, boils erupting from any spot the exploded potion touched.
"You idiot boy!" Snape snapped, stalking over. "I suppose you added the porcupine quills before taking it off the flame, didn't you? Hospital wing, all four of you, and twenty points from Gryffindor for your foolishness, Longbottom. Granger, you go with them to the hospital wing. Grayson, West, since you two obviously ducked to avoid the explosion, you will stay after to clean it up. The rest of you, finish whatever step you are on, put your potions in your labeled vials, and leave."
"That's so unfair!" Wally muttered, adding the porcupine quills to their rapidly-cooling potion. "Why do we have to clean up the mess?"
"One, because we ducked and didn't tell anyone else," Dick said dryly, ladling the potion into their vials. "Two, because you have superspeed and can have this cleaned up in about five seconds. Three, probably because Snape wants to talk to us without anyone overhearing. Four-"
"OK, I get it!" Wally interrupted, cleaning up the cauldron.
The boys took their potions up, the last to do so. Everyone else had done it quickly and left, obviously not willing to stay long. Snape waited until the last of the first years had left before using his wand to send a mop and bucket towards the mess. "I apologize for my harshness, but I am in need of speaking with you privately, Mr. Grayson. Mr. West, would you care to do the honors?"
Wally looked at his robes, then up at the professor. "Um, just how am I supposed to run in these? They don't move very well."
"There is an obvious solution, West," Snape said. "Take it off."
"Take it…OH!" Cursing himself for being so dumb, he pulled the robes up, leaving him in his shoes, pants, shirt, and tie. He had the mess cleaned up in about five seconds, coming to a halt next to his best friend.
"The real reason I asked you to stay after is because your guardian told me the glamour on your eyes is fading," Snape said. "The spell itself, one of my own creations, is designed to last a year, using the person with the glamour's ambient magical signature."
"Their what?" Dick asked.
"Ambient magical signature," Snape explained, pointing his wand at Dick's eyes. Wally tensed, but all Snape did was murmur a quiet spell. "Magical beings exude magic; part of it is the accidental magic used as a child, part of it is used if a wizard or witch is strong enough to use wandless magic. Magical creatures use it to adapt quickly to their environment, and it is why they are magical. The spell I used to hide your eyes feeds on that energy, thus not draining the caster. Most glamours fade after a week, but this one does not." Snape seemed to pause for a moment, before asking quietly, "Would you like to see your natural eye color?"
Wally watched his friend hesitate, before saying, "Yes."
Snape conjured a mirror, and Dick looked. Wally heard his friend gasp, and he turned to see what had startled him.
Dick's eyes were an astonishingly green color, a vividness to them that he seemed to share when his eyes were blue. They seemed almost luminescent, and Wally felt slightly jealous.
"Hey, you're stealing my eye color!" he joked, and Dick let out a weak laugh. Snape didn't seem amused.
"Your mother's eyes were exactly like that," he said, and Dick visibly perked at the mention of Lily.
Snape seemed lost in memory, but shook himself out of it a moment later. He reapplied the charm, and gave them a stern look. "I would suggest you take advantage of your break and take a moment outside before your next class. Many have found themselves wanting fresh air after dealing with the, how do they put it? The 'dungeons bat,' I believe I am called."
Dick grabbed Wally's arm, and they gathered their materials before heading out the door. They had already been late to Flitwick's class once that week; they didn't want to press their luck a second time.
Last thing you probably want is a huge block of bold at the end as well as the beginning, but I think I need to explain something about Snape's character.
Dick and Snape will have a much different relationship than Harry and Snape did. A lot of this stems from how Snape views each character. For example, he sees Harry as a spoiled, arrogant child, a copy of his father with his mother's eyes. He doesn't know the whole story, nor does he take the time to get to know Harry.
In this story, however, I am going with some of the background I have already set up: namely, Snape rescuing Harry from the Dursley's when he was young and how he was raised. Snape knows that Harry, aka Dick, was raised a circus brat in this story, and though he knows fame (and might have enjoyed it as a child; he'd almost have to, to work in a circus) he doesn't let it go to his head. Snape left Dick/Harry to be raised by a relative of Snape's, and then, when John and Mary Grayson were killed, to be raised by Bruce. Bruce helped instill some measure of humility in Dick when he became Robin.
Snape is already showing that difference in this chapter, and back earlier when they went to Diagon Alley. He already knows the difference between what is and what could have been in this story. It may seem like he is OOC, but different events have happened, and it shows. Not every character will be in tune with their book counterparts, no matter how much canon-ness I add into this story.
The difference will be down to how much of Dick/Harry's life he knows, and their relationship will be all the different. Snape will be more of a stand-offish mentor to Dick, and, more minorly, to Wally.
All right, and just one last thing: I have decided that there will be at least five more stories (as so far, that's all I've gotten started to planning), so I'll let you know what you should be looking out for!
I hope you guys enjoyed, and I'd love some feedback if you have any!