Kushina got Minato to calm down after talking to him in private. No one knew what was said, but Luna who had been closest had a rather interesting look on her face.
"Is that even possible?" she asked Kushina later.
"With enough flexibility and an open enough mind it is. Once you hit fourteen I'll help you learn yoga," said Kushina with a wink.
"Kushina! No corrupting my sister!" yelled Minato from across the room.
Kushina grinned as she yelled back "Only If you want that second rate author to corrupt her!"
Minato paled...and nodded miserably. Better for Kushina to do it instead of Jiraiya. At least she would keep Luna's innocence intact.
Nick floated over to her in amusement. Her boyfriend (it was pretty damn obvious that Micheal and Kushina were an item, the two weren't exactly discreet) was making many of the ghosts there laugh. It was unusual to find someone so terrified of ghosts in a castle full of them.
Just as Kushina was about to devour her fifth bowl of ramen (the house elves delivered about twenty large bowls) the headless hunt arrived and made a mess of Nick's party.
Kushina couldn't let that go unpunished, so she made a quiet request to Shinigami-sama for Nick's sake.
A cold presence swept through the room, making ghost and student shiver in dread. There was a loud snick...and without warning Nick's head came clean off! Before the presence left, they all heard a dark chuckle.
Kushina laughed at everyone's surprised looks.
"Oh that was priceless!" she cackled.
Nick carefully picked up his head and plopped it back on. Though now he had to be careful how he moved or it would fall off. He seemed very pleased by that, despite the fact his head had just been cut off but something twice.
"I take it you know what that was about Kushina?" he asked amused.
"Of course I do! I asked Shinigami-sama to do you a favor, since you're my favorite ghost out of the whole school Nick!" she said grinning.
The leader of the Headless Hunt gave her a cold look.
"How would a mere girl like you know the Eastern God of Death?" he said annoyed.
Kushina's smile didn't waver a bit as she leveled some of her KI at the horseman. The ghostly horse reared back, and dropped him on his ass.
"How...?! Mortals shouldn't be able to affect a ghost!"
"That's right, normal mortals can't affect something like a dullahan. However I have never been normal," she said grinning. Behind her, her hair rose into nine neat segments and a ghostly presence in the shape of a monstrous fox appeared.
The headless horseman wisely shut his trap. No way in hell was he going to annoy someone who had a bloody bijuu from the East sealed inside of them!
"That was so fun!" said Kushina.
"15 bowls... 15 bowls..." Hermione kept muttering. It was physically impossible for someone Kushina's size to eat 15 bowls of ramen that were the size of a quaffle! And to top it all off, only Micheal had been able to finish even one!
Luna had come second. Everyone else had to give up a little past half way!
"Bah, I would have eaten thirty if they had sent more!" said Kushina with a throw of her red hair.
"How the hell did you eat 15?! Those bowls were huge!" said Hermione scandalized.
"I have a special Ramen seal on my stomach..." smirked Kushina.
Minato groaned as he facepalmed. He knew very well what seal she was referring to, and it wasn't a freaking ramen seal. Then again, she had always been able to put away ramen.
"Hey, where are going?" asked Draco.
"Dunno. The feast isn't over for another five minutes," said Kushina.
"...Um guys, why is there water on the floor?" asked Neville.
"Didn't Peeves insult Myrtle at the start of the Party?" asked Luna.
"Geez. I'll have to have another talk with him about that. He knows I don't like to see kids cry," said Kushina.
"...What is that on the wall?" said Draco.
Their eyes immediately went to the form on the wall and the bloody writing on the wall. Kushina took a whiff and backed away.
"Ugh, wet paint."
"How do you know it's not blood?" said Hermione worriedly.
"Easy, it smells like that weird paint magicals like so much. It doesn't have a whiff of copper to it."
"How do you know what blood smells like?" asked Neville.
"Let me put it this way...didn't you wonder what happened to the stuttering moron we had last year?"
"I thought he quit because of nerves...?" said Draco.
Kushina whistled innocently as she pointed upward.
"I can hear a crowd coming, and fast. If we don't want to be blamed we better haul ass," said Kushina.
Minato looked behind him and said "She's right. Jump!"
Minato, Kushina and Luna all jumped, doing a perfect flip as their feet landed on the ceiling. Hermione, Draco and Neville all ran up the walls to join them. Instead of being caught at the scene of what they thought was a prank gone wrong, they all split off and headed straight to their common room. The ghosts had promised to cover for them after Kushina helped Nick out. Which meant they would have a solid alibi for where they were all night.
It wasn't until morning that they heard the news about Mrs. Norris.
Minato's scowl was so terrifying that Lockhart backed off all the way to the wall...on the other end of the hall.
"Why the hell would I want 'private lessons' with a hack like you?" said Minato.
The hall was completely devoid of others, Minato was about to turn around when his shinobi senses kicked into overdrive. He did a duck and roll, not caring that his books went flying. Lockhart had just shot a spell at him, probably a stunner.
"I was going to let you off easy by erasing anything that brat told you...but for that hack comment I'll have to 'punish' you..." said Lockhart with a sneer.
"...Seriously? Out of all the kids in the entire school you were dumb enough to try and challenge me?" said Minato.
An hour after Minato was done dealing with Lockhart, McGonagall finally came to see what the commotion was all about. Only to find Lockhart with more broken bones than her Quidditch team whenever the Twins got a little too rough with the bludgers. They had to do all the homework of the students who were hurt, and had learned never to lose control like that again.
"WHAT HAPPENED HERE?!" she said in absolute shock.
"Owwww..." said Lockhart.
McGonagall was quick to levitate him to the hospital wing, where Micheal Lovegood was being treated for some bruised wrists. It looked like an older classmate tried to grab him.
The second Lockhart laid eyes on Micheal, he flinched and then started crying from pain. Minato said something to Pomphrey in a low tone, and the woman did her best not to glare at Lockhart. As a result, his 'class' was canceled for a week until he could recover from his injuries.
But the repercussions of the event would continue well past the first semester.
"WHAT?! That bastard, I'll...!" snarled Kushina.
"Oh, don't worry. He won't try that a second time after the amount of KI I leveled at him while I nearly broke every bone in his body," said Minato smugly.
"I can't believe that third rate wizard tried to stun a student," said Draco.
"A student who could very well have blown his cover instead of insuring that the man couldn't harm anyone else by blocking him. Percy believed you when you told him didn't he?"
"He and the other prefects are helping us out by giving detentions to those slated for 'private lessons'. Luckily we're able to catch them thanks to the twin's help," said Kushina.
"You want us to what?" said George.
"I want you to booby trap the Defense classroom and those adjoining it. I don't want any students going in there without someone at least from fifth year accompanying them."
"Lockhart...Micheal confirmed he's a freaking pedophile with a thing for those third year and younger. I don't want any more victims by that man if I can do something to stop it."
Fred and George shared a look and said "We can help. But we need a time frame to work with."
"He can't do anything during class hours, so anytime after that to Midnight."
"...We can't keep an eye out all that time. We have to study too!"
"Fine, but do you have anything that can track the students that I can borrow?"
"We have just the thing!" said Fred.
"Presenting the Marauder's Map!" said George.
Kushina looked at it, felt the large mass of chakra on the paper and said "What's the password?"
"'I solemnly swear I am up to no good', and to turn it back say 'Mischief Managed'!" said the twins.
She tapped her wand saying the password, and to her surprise a complete map of the school appeared complete with little dots that had names on them.
"Perfect! Just what we needed!"
"But you can't tell anyone else."
"The only other person I would tell is Micheal and Luna. Hermione has yet to break her passion for rules, Neville would crack to easily and Draco is in another house that is known for keeping secrets over other's heads."
"Fair enough!" said George.
"Micheal's cool, for a kid!"
"Better than Ron is so many ways!" said George.
(Little known fact about the Weasly brothers: While they are a close knit group, they often prefer hanging out with Micheal Lovegood as opposed to Ron. As a result, his mother coddled him to the point that he is a literal Mamma's boy. For this reason, Ron has a serious grudge against Micheal, who has the respect of his older brothers.)
"Good to know you like him so much!"
"We definitely approve of his relationship with you, our one and only rival!" said the twins with a thumbs up.
Kushina felt a cold shiver go down her back at that sight.
'Dear kami, all they're missing is the bowl hait cut, the thick eyebrows, spandex and annoying voice...and they could be a perfect double Gai... Ooh! What a purr-fectly evil idea to use on that pedophile prick!'
The cackle Kushina let off at the thought scared the twins, so they split off before McGonagall came to investigate the terrifying noise.
A month after Lockhart was fully recovered and the 'private lessons' were about to resume, Kushina put into action one of her most evil prank ideas to date.
Lockhart would get his private lessons...but when she was through with him he would avoid pissing her off again.
"I am so pleased you accepted my offer for private lessons Draco~!" said Lockhart.
Unseen by the fool, Draco and Kushina were watching the whole thing from above with cameras waiting. Kushina had promised him a show if he could handle what was about to happen.
The moment Lockhart started becoming grabby, Kushina sent the signal.
Without warning 'Draco' (which was actually one of her shadow clones disguised as him) turned into the most horrifying thing imaginable for Lockhart.
A jounin by the name of Might Gai, the Green Beast of Konoha. The moment Lockhart sprang back, the Gai-look-alike started dragging him around the school forcing him to run at obscene speeds (for an untrained wizard like Lockhart anyway) screaming about the flames of youth.
Students and teachers alike gaped at the sight in shock. In the Defense classroom, Draco had to be held up by Kushina as he roared with laughter. They had taken so many pictures that it would be impossible for Lockhart to get rid of them all.
"Who the heck was that?" Draco asked when he could finally breathe again.
"Might Gai, a taijutsu nut case. As you can tell, he tends to be quite eccentric and likes to promote what he calls the 'flames of youth'. I fear for the world if he ever has children..."
"Dear spirits...someone like that exists in real life?!"
"Yup. Thankfully he has never spawned another copy, or I would fear for the world. He has this thing that can mental scar a person for life if he really gets going."
"What is that?"
"Something everyone should fear. The 'Sunset of Youth' genjutsu. Thankfully it takes two people to get it going otherwise..."
For an entire week all people could talk about was the bizarre man seen dragging Lockhart halfway across the school and back.
Lockhart quit asking students to try his private lessons after Kushina told him after the defense class that if he continued it she would do several repeats of the event.
"So...Christmas. Any plans?"
"Most of the school is leaving after the attacks. Especially after Nick was..." said Hermione.
Kushina's hair did the nine-way split again. The moment she heard about Nick she went ballistic and swore revenge on the culprit. Even after the entire Defense Club Lockhart tried to start where she accidentally revealed she could snake speak, no one believe for a second that she was the Heir of Slytherin.
Mostly because if she wanted to take out someone else, she would do it herself and not use the Chamber's Monster. Everyone in the school knew of her policy on bullies. Well, that and she went ballistic and nearly maimed Lockhart by 'mistake'.
"I still can't believe the fuss people made about the whole parselmouth thing."
"It's considered a dark ability, but once they realized who was doing the speaking and compared it what they already knew of you..."
"Everyone knew I could care less and would pinch the cheeks of anyone who made a big deal about it," said Kushina grinning.
Whenever someone made a big deal out of nothing, Kushina would pinch their cheeks hard. Once they were focused on the pain she would then explain things in terms they could understand and the entire situation went away. It was something that baffled the other students.
"Anyway, Gryffindor is about to be emptied except for a few like the twins and Ron. Neville promised his grandmother that he would come home this year since he skipped out last time, and Draco is still avoiding his father."
"What about the Lovegoods?"
"Luna has asked to stay in our tower and Micheal will be bunking with the twins. They already got the teacher's permission since their parents are heading overseas for a couple's vacation."
"Good. Neville is still in the beginning stages of healing, but his progress is remarkable. Augusta was rather pleased when she heard my reports on his ability."
"I've been sending monthly progress reports to any of the parents who were interested. Mito doesn't mind the exercise a bit, in fact she rather enjoys it."
"...Can I borrow your owl to send my parents letters?"
"Sure. I do a mass mail out once a week every Sunday."
"So how were our progress reports?"
Kushina brought out a book with a graph on it. It labeled several areas, names and progression rates.
Taijutsu: 30 percent improvement since starting
Chakra: 75 percent increase
Jutsu and Handsign memorization: could use some work, 10 percent
Personality: Has made several strides, and bullying is now almost non-existant. Note to self, ego is still something of an issue.
Taijutsu: 45 percent increase since start
Chakra: 70 percent increase over summer
Jutsu and Handsign memorization: may have photographic memory, almost 75 percent memory for hand signs
Personality: Bossiness is now at an acceptable level, though her study habits may need some adjusting to avoid possible burn out.
Taijutsu: 90 percent increase over summer
Chakra: 50 percent since starting regular exercises with lifting heavy bags
Jutsu and Handsign memorization: Could use some work but still at acceptable levels
Personality: Needs some serious confidence boosting, but is very reliable in a tight spot. May need to introduce him to Gai if his timidness continues past fifth year...
Hermione looked at the detailed graphs and then at her.
"What about your progress?"
Kushina sighed, and handed over the last book with the progress reports for Luna, Micheal and herself.
Taijutsu: skills almost past previous level at same age
Chakra: slightly diminished but still at a comfortable level
Jutsu and Handsign memorization: had to rehash a few things with Minato, but overall still fairly high
Personality: No change since being forced to come here.
Micheal Lovegood/Minato Namikaze
Taijutsu: has improved since I last saw him, maybe training with Luna had some effect?
Chakra: slightly diminished, but should return to previous levels by time we leave.
Jutsu and Hand Sign memorization: Has started to work on one handed seals, though progress is fairly slow.
Personality: slightly more protective than I remember, but that could be due to the fact that he has a younger sister this time around. Otherwise no change.
Taijutsu: has high skill level, but according to Minato they train together.
Chakra: Either high chunin or a very low jounin. Still very impressive.
Jutsu and Hand sign memorization: The girl is a freaking sponge!
Personality: acceptable quirks, especially with her ability to see past normal views. Note to self, look underneath the underneath when she drops cryptic messages.
"Why is her report higher than ours?"
"Micheal trained her from a much earlier age, and she gets more personal tutoring. Well, that and her chakra coils were unlocked much earlier which does make a huge difference."
Hermione decided to drop it and went back to reading the book on seals Kushina had handed her.
I am pleased to announce that this fic IS going to be completed, unlike most of my other works. I even have a sequel about to be made once Kushina and Dumbledore finally face off, and the title will be Trials of the Fox. Also I have a one shot where Sirius gets into the BINGO books that is sure to make you laugh your socks off once I get to third year. Again, this fic IS going to be completed and I am merely giving you all time to enjoy the chapters that were already created.