Harry watched in horror as his godfather fell towards the Veil. It felt like time stood still for that horrifying moment...
Until Sirius hit something and everyone paused when they heard a squawk of indignation and the annoyed shout that followed it. The thing was, that shout came from inside the Veil.
Which was impossible wasn't it?
"WHO THE BLOODY HELL TRIED TO CRASH INTO ME? I'LL HAVE YOUR SORRY HIDES FOR A CLOAK!" was the shout.
The voice was clearly feminine in origin, and had a slight Irish lilt to it. Sirius was out cold from the spell his cousin had used to knock him into the veil, but the person who he crashed into sure wasn't.
To the complete shock and disbelief of everyone present (Death Eaters included) someone walked out of the veil, clearly still very much alive!
She had a fiery red hair that Harry had only ever seen in pictures of his mother, and her eyes had the same gem like qualities Lily had.
But that was where the differences ended. This woman was about his age at least, and was wearing clothes he had only ever seen while indulging in his secret manga addiction. She looked like some sort of magical girl.
(Inwardly he snorted. Obliviously she had to be magical, how else would she have appeared like that during a fight?)
She was also as short as he was, but unlike Harry it appeared to be genetic rather than because of malnourishment and crampt living conditions during his early years.
She took one look at the Death Eaters, scowled, and punched the floor while shouting "Icicle Vines!"
Ice appeared where her fist met the floor, and every death eater there ended up trapped up to their torsos, with their arms and wands pinned, by two inch thick ice. The cold alone insured they wouldn't be able to blast their way out of it.
It was Remus who find his voice first, as his eyes couldn't believe what he was seeing.
"Lina? Lina Evans?" he dared to ask.
"Hello Wolf boy. Looks like the time between this world and the one I fell into were in perfect sync," said Lina.
She walked up to him unconcerned about the fact she had just ended a magical battle with a single spell, or that the Death Eaters were cursing up a streak about her.
It wasn't until she drew her wand that they shut up, more out of horror that anything.
"Oh dear spirits... YOU'RE STILL ALIVE?" said Lucius in absolute horror.
"Ah Lucy. How I haven't missed you," she said amused.
"Remus...who is she?" asked Harry, who was among the confused students.
Remus came to his senses as he looked between Lina and Harry with clear amusement. Of course he was the only one amused and not trying to piss his pants in terror.
"Harry, this is Lina Evans... Lily's twin sister and your other aunt. I thought you fell in by accident fifteen years ago?"
"I didn't fall into anything. That bumbling idiot Dawlish crashed into me and I fell through while I was observing the runes on the archway. It took me this long to find the corresponding arch and return."
"Wait, I have another aunt and no one told me?" said Harry in anger.
If he had another aunt, why didn't anyone mention her?
Remus coughed, embarrassed.
"Lina was a bit more...memorable...than your mother was. After the accident it took years for people to even mention her name without flinching. Once it was clear she wasn't coming back right away, well...people did their best to forget about her."
"Why?" he asked.
Lina grinned evilly.
"Because I was incredibly blunt, rude, and quick to set people on fire if I felt like I was being insulted. Slytherins use to run in abject fear of me and the girls used to hail me as a hero. Even the pure blood ones."
Then she turned on Lucius, who gulped audibly. This would not be pleasant.
"Which reminds me... I Sirius-ly doubt you've changed in fifteen years Lucy, so..."
The blond, who had gone unnoticed in the presence of the infamous Lina Evans, winced. He had no idea what this was all about, but from the way Lina acted, the man she was about to blast probably deserved it.
With Lina you could never tell.
"It's good to be back!"
Lina's return, clearly, had not been announced to the two major players who appeared after. Once she dealt with the Death Eaters (and spread a new nickname for poor Neville to call the woman who had tortured his parents into losing their minds) she went upstairs.
It took her a bit to get over the fact her sister and favorite Brother-in-law were dead and left a James clone behind, but she hadn't been surprised in the least that it was Peter's fault. His cowardice had always annoyed her to the point of blasting him if he came too close.
So when she emerged from the door, it was to the great surprise of Voldemort and Dumbledore who were battling upstairs.
She took one look at both of them, and instead of hexing them both on sight, she gained a smile that sent horrified shivers down the two arch enemies spines.
And then she blasted them both with her most favorite spell of all time...the Dragon Slave!
Harry followed her in time to see the blast. It had taken him fifteen minutes to get over the fact that he had another aunt...and the first thing he said once he saw the destruction was...
"Um...can you teach me how to do that?"
Lina's cackle would haunt Dumbledore for months.
"So basically your mum's fraternal twin..." started Harry.
They were currently enjoying Grimmauld place...without Mrs. Black shrieking at every loud noise. Out of all the muggleborns that had graced her presence, Lina Evans was the only one she openly approved of. If anything, when it came to Lina, Walpurga Black pretended the girl was a half blood from a noble line.
Sirius had run away not because of the atmosphere in his house, but because Walpurga was openly speaking of an engagement between him and Lina Evans. Normally he would have died of shock that his mother wanted him to marry what she called a filthy mudblood, but considering who Lina was, he mostly ran for his sanity.
Harry, on the other hand, didn't seem inclined to run from his fearsome aunt. If he had to choose between the magic-hating, abusive and annoying Petunia Dursley or the temperamental and fiery Lina Evans he wouldn't even hesitate to say that he preferred Lina.
While Lina was the bane to most males, particularly pure blood men who looked at females as little more than brood mares. Oh how they feared her when she heard their opinion!
Of course Harry wanted to know where she had been for the past fifteen years of his life.
And the story alone was more fantastic than he could have believed.
Flashback fifteen years ago, at the time of the accident...
Lina had just gotten permission to study the archway that held the Veil. It had fascinated her since she became an Unspeakable. She didn't believe in prophecies, and she was more prone to destroying things than inventing them.
But when it came to obscure research, even Lily had to admit her sister was hard to beat.
(A fact that had horrified her new husband more than he would admit out loud. Lina loved to prank James and the others with obscure spells that took weeks to break.)
Which was why Lina had been allowed to research an artifact even the older Unspeakables had lost interest in.
She leaned in closer to read a worn out rune she half recognized...when she heard Dawlish her bumbling partner enter the room.
"Wotcher Evans. Find anything interesting?" he asked.
"Possibly. Hand me the book on Aramaic will you?"
The next thing she knew the book was sent flying towards her...and the force of the flying book sent her careening into the veil.
She tried to reach for the solid stone of the archway...only to feel air in her grasp.
The last thing she saw was her idiot partner sneering at her with his left arm exposed. There, clear as day, was the Dark Mark still bleeding.
By the time she woke up, she discovered to her shock that she not only wasn't dead...but that she had apparently de-aged to that of a month old infant.
It took her thirteen years to find out why she was still aware of her previous life, and that only because she had accidentally summoned the strongest Dark Lord in the world she lived in.
Apparently she had caught the Lord of Nightmares eye when she first entered the world through the veil, which was why she was allowed to live with magic and given a chance to return home.
But there was a small price she had to pay for this gift. In exchange for her powers and memories, Lina had inadvertently become the Knight of Nightmares, a polar opposite to her new older sister Luna.
"Wow..." said Harry.
"Took me fifteen years to find the other half...and when I finally found out the spell that would allow me to return through the one I fell in, I end up being hit in the nose by an idiot!" she growled.
"To be fair, the look on Sirius' face when he heard who he crashed into was priceless. I took pictures if you're interested."
Lina's smirk was all the answer he needed. She cackled in her usual way which didn't frighten Harry nearly as much as it did her blond companion Gourry Gabriev.
With the return of Lina Evans, the entire magical community was set on it's head.
First and foremost being that Dumbledore no longer had any say in Harry's life. All his power as Harry's magical guardian were revoked the second Lina stepped into Gringotts. The goblins were the only people who weren't caught off guard about the fact she was still alive.
Their records worked across worlds apparently.
Harry had needed some time to recover his hearing when Petunia learned her younger sister was not only alive, but had come back with a vengeance. Lina was not pleased about hearing how Petunia treated her nephew. Needless to say Vernon would have a very healthy fear of red heads and witches after that, and Dudley finally realized that if he didn't shape up and fast he would be the next to receive his missing aunt's fireballs.
It went without saying that Harry learned that spell first. If only so he could blast Malfoy the next time he called Hermione a mudblood.
The next thing to happen was Sirius' becoming a free man once one of the Unspeakables discovered Peter among the captured Death Eaters.
Remus seemed to be the only man who wasn't cowering in absolute terror of her return.
Then again, the worst he had ever suffered from Lina was being called Wolf Boy after she learned of his condition. While being covered in pink fluffy bows was embarrassing, it was better than what she used to use on Sirius and James.
The irony was that even though her name was taboo among the males like the name of the current Dark Lord, she wasn't considered evil at all.
If anything, Lina was one of the nicest people you could meet, if you stayed on the good side of her temper.
Though everyone shivered when she was introduced to the Weasly Twins. The cackling the three let loose gave every witch and wizard present nightmares that could only be counteracted by a dreamless sleep potion and lots of fire whiskey.
"Hello Miss Lina. Enjoying your return?" asked the mysterious Priest.
Out of all the sorceresses he had come across in the eons he had lived, Lina was by far his favorite. As one of the Mazoku race, he fed on the more negative emotions.
And whenever Lina was involved, he usually ended up feasting on the most delicious range of emotions. Say what you will about Xellos, but he loved Lina's temperamental ways. She caused chaos without trying, and he loved it.
And something told him her nephew would be no different, even if he was a bit more even tempered that his aunt.
Harry of course, was a bit of an oddity to Xellos and Lina.
When originally introduced to Gourry, he had been slightly defensive around the man until he heard more from his aunt. Lina chalked that up to Petunia's influence, seeing as how Harry was slightly defensive around most people...with the exception being Remus.
It seemed Harry relied on his owl to judge people before lowering that instinctive reaction.
However, seconds upon meeting Xellos, Harry didn't even once look defensive. If anything he seemed a bit more relaxed, as if he was talking to Remus.
That sort of reaction baffled Xellos completely. The fact that Harry was more comfortable around him than he was around his fellow students was beyond strange, as most humans automatically became cautious if they learned something wasn't human or worse, had the power to kill them without a thought.
And Xellos didn't even want to think about that owl of his.
Lina had, in a fit of boredom, accidentally introduced the world she landed in to poker.
And to Xellos' displeasure, even with his blank facial expressions he almost always lost at the game. Even Lina hadn't anticipated how well poker would go over in the other world.
She was the only person who ever won it with consistency.
So it was to his great shame that he lost the game, of all things, to an owl. Harry seemed to find this downright hilarious, even though he was notorious in his school for being the most polite card shark.
So far a good portion of his school owed him at least fifty galleons in winnings. Harry mostly used them for alibis or favors, to the relief of the muggleborns.
The only people who owed him an excess of a hundred galleons were Draco, and to the disgust of a certain pair of twins, Ron.
Ron's pride made it impossible for him to stomach defeat at poker to his 'best friend' which often lead to him making outrageous bets against Harry despite the unspoken rule being to let the raven haired boy clean you out fast and early.
"So why didn't you come back?"
"The Lord of Nightmares took an interest in me. The Veil doesn't actually kill you right off, but it does lead to a place most humans wouldn't survive if they were taken there without warning."
"Where does it go?"
"It leads to the realm of the Mazoku, my race," said Xellos amused.
Lina yelped, but Harry didn't. Yet another strike to his oddness. Then again, with friends like the Terror Twins, he was probably used to it.
"What is a Mazoku?"
"Mazoku...the Demon Race. Out of all of them, Xellos is the only one I ever get along with. Even if you are annoying as hell."
"Why thank you Miss Lina."
"So who is the Lord of Nightmares?"
"The Lord of Nightmares is the Lord of All Dark Lords. She shines gold upon the sea of chaos. Calling on her is probably the most dangerous thing you can do."
"So, basically she's like the sun?"
"You said she 'shines gold upon a sea of chaos.' The only thing that fits such a description is the sun," explained Harry.
Xellos looked at him before snickering.
"She is going to love you."
"Anyway, why did it take so long to get back?"
"Because she took an interest in me, she turned me back into an infant. Took me fifteen years just to get back to my previous level, let alone find that stupid arch. It wasn't for nothing though. Back there I have a reputation bigger than what I had here."
"Dark Lord Slayer," said Xellos, "In that world, Lina is infamous for being the only human alive who can take out the Dark Lords. She also has another nickname..."
"Don't you dare! If you tell him about that one I will hex you blind Xellos!" she shrieked.
"She's called the Dragon Spooker," he grinned.
"Why? Sounds like a great nickname to me," said Harry in confusion.
"They call me Dragon Spooker, as in Dragons step past out of disgust," she said annoyed.
"Let me put it this way. Before I fell through that damn arch, my chest wasn't nearly this flat, and I was taller than Xellos. Now I'm a shrimp without a chest to speak of. It's mortifying!"
"You could have just switched back to the age she found you at..." muttered Xellos. Lina had hit him with a series of stinging hexes.
"What?" she said in a dangerous tone.
"The Lord of Nightmares removed that spell which kept you short and flat months ago. I would have thought you noticed that by now."
Harry took a good look at his aunt, then at Xellos.
"I would start running now. She reminds me of Hermione when she's about to go into full on bitching rant mode. Though from what I can tell of Aunt Lina's personality, that might involve a lot of repair bills to pay..."
Xellos looked at her, and agreed fully. He turned around and hauled ass out of there, flying the entire time.
He decided to go visit another country...perhaps Russia where Lina wouldn't be inclined to follow?
Harry immediately took cover as his aunt started slinging high level destructive spells at anything that crossed her path. She was far worse than any demon when she was pissed...and yet he could honestly say he still preferred her over Petunia.
At least Lina was interesting...