Embee: Aaaaand welcome back everyone! No, wait, first of all, if you're a new reader, and have not read "Beyond the Veil", STOP HERE. Go back and read that one first. This is a SEQUEL.

Legolas: -cringes from epically echoing voice- ...this chapter is dedicated to Haytang, who managed to get Embee off her lazy bum and post the chapter.

Embee: Funny story, actually, she had been reviewing on "Beyond the Veil", and asked me on the last chapter "so when's the sequel?" To which I replied, "Sometime in the next few weeks". Then she said, "Okay, I'll get my popcorn ready for next week!". Seeing her answer, I thought, 'well, crap, I better get moving'.

Legolas: We would also like to thank all of you readers for patiently waiting for the sequel.

Embee: But before you start reading, here's a special note:

NOTE: This fic is rated 'T' for language and violence. It is a SEQUEL to the story "Beyond the Veil", found on my page. In this story, eight months have passed since the ending of "Beyond the Veil". And lastly, but most importantly because this will cover the entire story (because I'm too lazy to post it every single chapter):

DISCLAIMER: I highly doubt I could be two people at once. Therefore, I own neither the Bleach nor the Harry Potter franchise. I am simply toying with their characters for our amusement. The only things I own are the plot, Satoki, Oszlar, Lefu, and Karu no Riken. And anything else that might pop up randomly that does not belong in canon.

Now enjoy!

The Broken Veil: Emergency

"Miyahara, Tsukino, take Captain Ukitake and get back to camp!" Sirius roared, blasting back an Arrancar that was trying to attack the fallen taicho. Ukitake had lasted many weeks on the frontlines, battling with his fukutaicho and a large unit made up of both wizards and shinigami, but his illness had finally struck at a most inopportune moment. "Williams, Donohue, Abing, Kozu, cover their retreat!"

The named fighters nodded and immediately raced to follow Sirius's orders.

"Sirius…I can keep fighting," Ukitake said weakly, struggling to stand on his own.

"Byakurai!" Sirius shouted after saying the incantation as fast as he could. "Sorry, sir, but we can't have you dying on us. I'll take care of it from here."

The moment the taicho was safely away from the battlefield, Sirius called a retreat. He led his forces back to the outskirts of the small Muggle village and did a quick headcount.

It was worse than he had feared. Originally, the unit had thirty members, both shinigami and wizard. He and Ukitake had been sent out to investigate a supposed sighting of an Espada, only to be ambushed the moment they entered the town. They were lucky to have safely evacuated most of the citizens, but at a heavy cost. Only thirteen remained of the original unit, including the ones who had escaped with Ukitake.

"Nakano, how many Arrancar are there?" Sirius asked.

A blond shinigami looked up from bandaging a heavily-wounded arm. "I think about ten, Vice-Captain Black. I'm not sure."

Sirius frowned. They were outnumbered by at least three. The only ray of light was that there was no sign of an Espada, although no one knew if Aizen had replaced the ones he had lost in the Battle of Hogwarts. If that was the case, then Sirius had no idea what the Espada would look like, or how powerful it was, and his unit would be doomed.

"Who is still okay to fight?" Sirius asked.

Everyone, even the wizards, who had been a little wary about having a former Azkaban escapee as their commander, raised a hand. Sirius was touched to see that many of them sported heavy injuries.

"Good, then partner up," Sirius said. "Let's take out as many of these Arrancar as possible."

Sensing the approach of their enemies, Sirius ran out from behind the house they had been hiding behind and charged, his unit right on his heels. Spells and Cero clashed against one another, causing miniature explosions. Soon an Arrancar fell, followed by a wizard.

The ensuing battle was chaotic and bloody. Sirius tried to be everywhere at once, fending off the Arrancar and trying not to lose any more of his subordinates. His thoughts blurred together, and the only thing that seemed real to him was the blood that covered the field.

Finally, it was over. One Arrancar, a thin black-haired woman with a horse-like mask that covered most of her face, had been left alive for questioning. Sirius was left with only five of his original unit.

"Who sent you here?" Sirius demanded, lowering the end of his staff until the snarling dog at the end was centimetres from the Arrancar's nose. The woman went cross-eyed trying to keep in within her vision. Exhaustion was making his head swim, but Sirius struggled not to let his arm tremble.

"Go to hell," the female Arrancar snarled, weakly clutching a fatal wound in her stomach.

Sirius's expression darkened. "I just lost nineteen good men to the Arrancar. Good friends, those people were. I have five others here with me, and they are sure as hell pissed off at you. The only thing keeping them from exterminating you right now like the vermin you are is me. You are not in a position to be difficult."

The Arrancar's pale blue eyes darted around and saw five grief-filled, furious faces. All of them still had a hand on their respective weapons. She swallowed nervously.

"Now I'm going to ask you again, who sent you here?" Sirius growled.

Before the Arrancar could answer, she suddenly stiffened.


Sirius instinctively reacted to his Zanpakutou's shout. As the Arrancar's body began to glow, Sirius roared for his men to get away from her, erecting a Kidou barrier in an attempt to protect them. Seconds after he did so, the Arrancar vanished in a giant explosion that cracked the wall Sirius had created.

What the hell was that? Sirius demanded, coughing in the debris-filled air. "Unit, report!" he shouted hoarsely, hoping that his men had gotten away in time.

It appears that she was…programmed, for lack of a better word, to explode to prevent leaking any information, Karu no Riken growled.

"Vice-Captain Black, help!" one voice called, and Sirius immediately ran to answer. He found two of his soldiers crowding around a third.

"Wood is badly hurt," one of the men said, looking up at Sirius's approach. Sirius was relieved to see that the young wizard had managed to escape the worstthe blast. The other man, this one a shinigami, was also relatively unhurt.

Sirius only wished he could have said the same of the woman laying the rubble of a house.

Jennah Wood, a pretty witch with auburn hair, had been too slow to avoid the full blast and get under cover of Sirius's Kidou wall. Her left arm had been blown off, and terrible burns covered her left side.

"We need to stop her bleeding," Sirius said, building a Kidou barrier to try and keep Wood stable. It was a weak barrier, as Sirius was no good with healing Kidou, but it would keep Wood alive for a few minutes at the most. "Yao, contact the Soul Society and demand immediate recall. Give them the code Twin Fish 1344U," Sirius ordered and tossed the shinigami a cell phone. "Dreesen, close the wound. We may be able to save her."

The other two survivors had yet to respond to Sirius's call, but he couldn't concern himself about them now. He had to focus on the ebbing life in front of him.

"Stay with me Wood," Sirius said, attempting to give the woman something to focus on. "Don't you dare die on me, that's an order. Remember your son, Alfie? He's a first year at Hogwarts. You told me this morning you got a letter from him a few days ago, telling you about his new friend, Mark."

Yao returned the phone to Sirius. "Sir, the Soul Society is sending a team to get us. They've sent another to retrieve Captain Ukitake. I have also told them about the evacuees. A third team will care of the mortals."

Sirius nodded, not taking his eyes off the faintly breathing Wood. Dreesen was working furiously to close Wood's wounds and stop the bleeding, his wand glowing.

"Where are Nakano and Sirois?" Sirius asked.

"I don't know, sir, they haven't responded."

Inwardly, Sirius swore. "When the retrieval team gets here, we'll search for them. Be on the alert, there may still be Arrancar about."

"Yes, sir."

Fortunately, it didn't take long for the retrieval team to arrive, although for Sirius, it felt like years.

"See to Wood," Sirius said once the shinigami and wizards began pouring from the senkaimon. "She's lost her arm and a lot of blood."

Immediately three Fourth Divisioners appeared by her side and began their work. The rest of the team began combing the ruined village for any survivors, both ally and enemy.

"Vice-Captain Black!"

Sirius turned around at the call of his name. He recognized Hanatarou from the Fourth Division racing towards him.

"Your presence is required immediately in the Captain's meeting hall," the young man said, panting a little.

"I still have two men missing, I will return when I've found them" Sirius said stubbornly.

Hanatarou frowned a little nervously. "Um, Captain-Commander Yamamoto said that we will recover your missing people. You need to return immediately."

Sirius briefly toyed with the idea of simply ignoring the orders. Then he decided that he didn't want to have Hanatarou punished because of him. Or have either of them fried.

"Fine," Sirius finally answered, resealing his Zanpakutou before sheathing it. He winced when the action irritated his broken ribs. They were one of many wounds gained during the battle.

I wonder what the old Captain-Commander wants so badly that I can't even heal myself first, Sirius thought as he wove through the crowd of people to reach the still-open senkaimon.

There are plenty of Fourth Divisioners and healers here. Have one heal your wounds before you continue, Karu no Riken said. I will not allow you to return before you do so, she added when she sensed that Sirius was about to refuse.

Sighing, Sirius complied with his Zanpakutou's wishes. He pulled over the first healer he saw and asked her to at least close his wounds. Unfortunately, Karu no Riken wouldn't be satisfied until his ribs were repaired, bones were reset, and his numerous cuts and scrapes cared for. It was another thirty-five minutes before Sirius could go through the gate.

If Yamamoto's mad because I'm late, Sirius thought warningly, I'm blaming you.

Karu no Riken only chuckled.

Sirius hurried through the Precipice World and out into the Soul Society. He was immediately overwhelmed by the sheer mass of people, both shinigami and wizards, on the other side. Attacks were occurring all the time, and the main senkaimon was constantly being used.

After weaving his way through the mob, Sirius Shunpo'd the rest of the way to the First Division.

I really hope it isn't anything too bad, Sirius thought, hesitating before actually entering the meeting hall. He had rarely been called into that hall for any good reasons, the last one being his promotion to a fukutaicho.

Perhaps it is about…

I swear I had nothing to do with the purple biscuits! It wasn't my fault!

Says the one who decided not to eat biscuits that morning before even seeing them, Karu no Riken noted.

Oh, come on, you have to admit it was pretty funny, Sirius retorted, trying to lead the conversation away from his possible involvement with the incident. We'd go mad if we didn't have something to lighten the mood occasionally. We don't have to be in a war mindset all the time.

Do remember that your little prank sent the entire Soul Society into a total lockdown, thinking that Aizen had poisoned the food supply.

Okay, that was unexpected, Sirius said as he slid the door open. There was no sense in delaying it any longer.

"Captain Ukitake! How are you feeling?" Sirius exclaimed, glad to see that his taicho had managed to make it to the meeting, although the man looked pale. Ukitake smiled a little weakly and pointed to his ear. Sirius suddenly remembered that he still had his translator, something that had become as second-nature as his Zanpakutou after days of constant use, and quickly removed it.

Sirius quickly ran his eyes down the line, and was a little worried to see that every single taicho was present, even Ikkaku, who hated fulfilling his taicho duties. All of them looked tired and strained.

The war had taken its toll on everyone.

"Black Sirius-fukutaicho, you have been called to this meeting to address a serious matter," Yamamoto began, ignoring the slight snicker from Sirius at the poor word choice. "You are aware that when a wizard dies, he or she loses all reiatsu, correct?"

Sirius nodded, feeling a little hopeful that there had been no mention of the infamous Purple Biscuit Lockdown incident…that he had absolutely nothing to do with. "Yes, Yamamoto-soutaicho."

"You are an exception to this, as you have miraculously not only survived becoming a shinigami, but you have also risen to become a fukutaicho," Yamamoto continued. Sirius frowned, biscuits forgotten, wondering where this was going. "You also have your memories completely intact, something that no former wizard has after arriving at the Soul Society. In our past studies of wizard souls, it was discovered that if a wizard's soul were to regain his or her memories…they would also regain their powers and that reiatsu would unravel, eventually killing the soul."

A sickening feeling filled Sirius.

They couldn't be talking about…James…could they? No, both he and Lily were perfectly fine the last time we saw them…and that was just a few weeks ago!

I highly doubt that James would allow you to see any form of weakness, not when you have so many responsibilities to see to and are worrying about an entire war. Karu no Riken stated, but her unease filtered through her thoughts.

Unaware of the fear that was now gripping Sirius, Yamamoto continued speaking, "While you have shown none of these effects, it has come to our attention that another former wizard has regained his memories and is displaying symptoms of Hollowfication." Yamamoto paused and opened a single red eye to fix Sirius with a hard stare. "You know a Potter James, correct?"

It was stated more like a fact, rather than a question. Sirius nodded stiffly, not trusting himself to speak.

"Potter James has begun to Hollowfy as a result of regaining his memories, and this process is irreversible," Yamamoto said emotionlessly. "Black Sirius-fukutaicho, you are ordered to execute Potter James by twenty-three hundred. If you have not complied by then, an execution team will be sent out to finish the job. Understood?"

Sirius felt as though the ground had suddenly given away beneath him. He barely felt himself nod and slowly walk out of the hall. He barely heard Ukitake calling out to him, or the sympathetic murmurs from Unohana and a few others. Everything was as in a daze, and Sirius found himself praying that this was some nightmare.

James, Hollowfying? That can't be possible! Sirius silently exclaimed. Wizard souls don't Hollowfy like that…and besides, he's had most of his memory for months now, why…

You knew something like this would eventually happened, Karu no Riken chided. But you ignored it. Now the day of reckoning has arrived, and there is nothing you can do.

Sirius stopped and shook his head. Do you want me to kill my best friend?

Of course not! Karu no Riken snarled, making Sirius wince from the force of her voice. But what else is there? You cannot reverse the transformation once it has begun!

Kurosaki Ichigo survived it, Sirius pointed out. And the Vizard did too.

You forget, Black Sirius, that Kurosaki Ichigo is far from a normal individual. He is neither human, nor Hollow, nor shinigami. You cannot compare him to a normal human soul.

James was a wizard!

Karu no Riken continued, ignoring Sirius's interruption. The Vizard were all powerful shinigami to begin with, and they had the help of Urahara Kisuke. The moment James entered the Soul Society he became a normal human soul, with very low reiatsu. He could never survive the Hollowification process.

Sirius scowled and punched the wall next to him, making it crack slightly. He winced when blood began to roll down his fist.

I will not give up on James!

This is not a matter of giving up, Sirius! There is nothing you can do!Karu no Riken roared. Do remember that I am a part of your soul. James is as much my friend as he is yours. I do not want to do this anymore than you do!

Anger coursed through Sirius. You have a funny way of showing your reluctance, Karu no Riken. If you really are a part of my soul, then you should be just as stubborn as I am about this.

The sudden rush of reiatsu caused Sirius to flinch, and he felt almost as if the dog was pressing her heavy paws on his shoulders, digging her claws into his skin.

Do not dare assume I am uncaring, Black Sirius, the dog snarled. I am simply facing reality, something that you refuse to do because you are blinded by your emotions. Killing James is the kindest thing you can do for him. Would you rather he became a Hollow because you were too weak to stop him, and then killed by uncaring shinigami?

Silence reigned in Sirius's mind for a few moments. The rational part of his mind knew that Karu no Riken was right, no matter what his personal feelings about the matter were. It was his job, not only as a shinigami, but as James's friend to stop James before things got out of hand. But Sirius didn't think he would have the strength to actually kill James.

I…I have to see James first, Sirius finally said after a long pause. Karu no Riken growled. She knew Sirius was trying to delay having to kill James, but she didn't push the matter any further. If she did, she would only succeed in pushing Sirius further away, and he may even block her entirely from his mind.

Sirius began walking again, dragging his feet to extend the journey. He kept his eyes fixed on the ground and ignored any greetings directed to him by passersby.

He nearly flew right over the wall when someone put a hand on his shoulder.

"Padfoot, we've called you three times now, what could you possibly be thinking about so hard?"

Sirius grinned when he turned around and saw Bokor Oszlár and Moguru Satoki standing behind him. Oszlár had a large black eye patch over the right side of his face, covering the heavily scarred skin from his battle with Ulquiorra. He still wore his wooden charms and ear piercings, but his hair was now long enough to be tied back in a low ponytail.

Satoki looked almost exactly as she did the last time Sirius had seen the pair of them, over six months ago. Her narrow black eyes watched Sirius coldly, and her angular face was expressionless. Like always, her hair was tied back in a narrow black braid. And although she appeared unarmed, Sirius knew that if he were to suddenly attack her, she would have hundreds of weapons and instruments of torture in her hands before Sirius could take two steps.

Not that Sirius was stupid enough to do such a thing.

"Prongs, Fang, what are you two doing here?" Sirius asked, dragging his two unwilling friends into a giant bear hug. "Last I heard from you, you were stationed at an outpost in Germany."

"We were," Satoki answered, twisting Sirius's arm behind his back to make him let her go. "However, we were recalled by Kuchiki-taicho."

Sirius gave Satoki and Oszlár a curious look as he rubbed his ribs, which were aching again because of Satoki's reaction. "Why?"

At Sirius's question, both Oszlár and Satoki shot each other undecipherable looks. Oszlár looked back at Sirius and began slowly,

"Well…we heard…"

"Hey, White! I finally found you," another voice cut across, interrupting whatever Oszlár had been about to say. "Oh, look, you found Demon-Girl and Shorty too!"

Oszlár glared at the man approaching them, while Satoki simply ignored him. Ureftu Lefu just smirked at Oszlár's expression, and ruffled the shorter boy's hair when he got close enough.

"I'll have you know, I've grown a little," Oszlár said hotly.

Both Sirius and Lefu snorted. Then Lefu pretended to look serious as he held out a hand and measured Oszlár. "Hmmm…nope, I thought not. This little strand of hair doesn't count for your height, Shorty," he added, pulling out the stray string of hair.

Sirius openly laughed at the furious look on Oszlár's face. He hadn't seen Lefu for almost as long as the other two, as the tall black man was now head of a research department in the Twelfth Division, and couldn't leave the Soul Society very much. Other than a thick scar that crossed his shaved head, a token from fighting in the Battle of Hogwarts, and several newer burns on his arms and face, Lefu looked the same.

"So, White, I heard James is on the death row," Lefu said, earning him vicious glares from Satoki and Oszlár. "What are we going to do to save him?"

Embee: -plays dramatic music- We're jumping right into the action with this one, how about that?

Legolas: -stomach growls- Can we eat breakfast now?

Embee: No. Anyway, another little note that I didn't want to add at the beginning...but I've shuffled the positions around in the Gotei 13. Ikkaku was forced to be the Ninth Division taicho, because his Bankai was revealed at Hogwarts, but he'll be allowed to return to the Eleventh once a 'better candidate' is found. Renji was made taicho of the Fifth, and Rukia took his place in the Sixth. Hinamori was forcibly retired until her mental state is more stable and was replaced by her third seat (I may or may not come up with a name for him...unless we actually know who he is). And I decided that Kira managed to attain Bankai during the battle at Hogwarts (after training for decades), and was made the Third Division taicho. Why did I do all that? There was a giant power vaccuum in the Gotei 13, and with a full-out war against two different enemies, they can't have that. So Yamamoto got off his lazy butt and filled the vaccuum, like he should have done canonically.

Legolas: I heard your stomach growl. It is time for breakfast.

Embee: That was your stomach. This is why you should have eaten dinner.

Legolas: I was unconscious!

Embee: I did warn you that I may or may not have spilled an unidentified chemical on the muffins you made. But you ate them anyway.

Legolas: You made me.

Embee: -ignoring- Anyway, if you have any questions, feel free to ask!