Chapter 1: Chapter 1
Disclaimer: don't own Harry Potter or Naruto.
This is AU and I realise that both Harry and Itachi are probably way OOC but it is fanfiction and a crossover. Starts the summer after OoTP. No idea about the Naruto timeline really. Probably around the start of the series though. I read in another fic that Itachi was about 15 and Sasuke 8 when he killed the clan and I'm making Itachi nineteen when Harry is 17 so the Naruto gang would be12. Not following HBP, haven't read the whole book and didn't really like what I did read. I am new to Naruto so apologies if I get anything totally wrong. You'll notice in my fics that I pretty much avoid naming the spells they use; the same will end up happening with jutsu's.
He smiled as he entered the clearing. This was his place where he could go when he needed to be alone or just to think. No one would ever look for him here. Although it was odd that he was dreaming of it since usually his dreams were filled with darker things, ever since that day. He suddenly froze, every sense alert as he searched the clearing. He wasn't alone. Finally he spotted another figure at the other end of the clearing, standing with his back to him, he was positive the figure was male. If it weren't for the fact that his brother was shorter he would have thought he was dreaming of him, that and his little brother would never be seen wearing such rags. Cautiously he moved silently closer but the figure didn't seem to notice him. When he was finally just out of reach he purposely stepped on a twig, snapping it. The other male spun around, backing away automatically. He found himself staring into the greenest eyes he'd ever seen on a human, eyes that held fear, pain and strength.
"What are you doing here?" He growled out. The other didn't even flinch but studied him in return.
"Dunno. Last I checked I was in bed at my families so I'd say I'm dreaming. Not the sort of dream I usually have but so far it's a nice change." He didn't recognise the boys, for that was what he was, accent which was odd.
"Question is, am I dreaming of you or are you dreaming of me?" He tilted his head to the side and smiled as he said it, eyes now holding only an almost childish curiosity.
"Who are you?"
"Oh, sorry. Harry Potter, pleased to meet you." He stared at Harry, why wasn't he afraid of him? Everyone one was afraid of him now.
"What?" he snapped.
"I told you my name, only fair you tell me yours."
"Uchiha Itachi." He blinked, why had he answered?
"Nice to meet you Itachi. From the way you gave your name I'd guess you're from Asia somewhere?"
"Of course that's assuming we're even from the same world. We may not be, who knows when magic's involved." Itachi just stared at the boy. Was he mad or something?
"Yep, magic. I am a Wizard after all and with those eyes I doubt very much you're a muggle. Of course your world may not have wizards."
"Oh. Neat. I've never met a ninja before. Don't think they exist anymore. So maybe you're from the past? But your clothes look fairly modern."
"Do you always talk so much?" Harry grinned at him.
"Not usually. Don't know why I'm being so talkative." Harry suddenly frowned.
"I think my Aunt's calling me. Maybe I'll see you again, it was nice meeting you Itachi." With that the boy faded away, leaving Itachi alone in the clearing that in real life was only a days travel from Konoha, the home he could never return to.
Harry sat up, fumbling for his glasses. That had to have been the oddest dream he'd ever had. He checked his scar out of habit, no pain at all. So that ruled out some twisted game on Voldemorts part. But something told him that had not been a regular dream and that he'd see the cold young man again.
"Hurry Up Boy!" He winced at his Aunt's shout and scurried out of bed. In another month he'd be back at Hogwarts for his sixth year and then he'd only have to come back here for one month before he was free.
"You're quiet." Itachi glanced up at his partner and friend. He was the only person alive beside himself who knew the truth about his past.
"Dreams." He answered softly.
"Dreams? Not nightmares?"
"No. There's a boy, but I know I've never met him. He has the greenest eyes I've ever seen."
"Careful, sounds like you like him." Itachi snorted.
"Hardly, the boy is a dream and even if he wasn't he's clearly mad."
"If you say so." Kisame went back to caring for his sword, leaving his friend to his thoughts for now. Itachi sighed in frustration. The dreams didn't come every night but they were frequent. Most times they didn't even talk, just sat in the clearing staring up at the sky silently. To his surprise he'd found himself almost looking forward to seeing Harry, his presence was soothing and he never pressed him to talk. Harry would sometimes talk about his day or a letter he'd received from a friend and Itachi would listen, feigning disinterest.
"You alright mate?"
"You've been quieter than normal, that's all. Everyone's noticed."
"I'm okay Ron, just have a lot on my mind."
"Amongst other things. I'm fine, I promise. How about a game of chess?" Ron grinned.
"Get ready to be beaten mate." The two teens laughed and set the board up. Sure enough, Harry was beaten within ten minutes but they were a fun ten minutes. He smiled as Hermione launched into a rant about homework and the NEWTs, even though they still had over a year to study for them.
"I was starting to think you weren't coming back." Harry smiled at Itachi as the other man spoke.
"I think we only come here when we aren't exhausted. Thanks to Snape that's what I've been this last week. Honestly, how he expects me to learn anything when all he does is shout 'clear your mind' at me I have no idea." Harry threw himself down on the lush grass, sighing in contentment.
"Does this place exist in your world?"
"Yes. It is where I go to think."
"Or to be alone. I have a place like that, but its nothing like this."
"Why aren't you afraid of me?" Harry rolled over so he could look at his companion. Itachi was looking away from him.
"Should I be? If you were going to hurt me you would have done it that first night."
"I could kill you."
"Probably, then again I don't know if we could hurt each other here. Besides, according to some stupid half-baked prophecy there is only one person who can kill me and I'm the only one who can kill him. Really sucks. What chance does a sixteen year old, half trained Wizard have against the darkest Dark Lord my world has seen in millennia?"
"What?" Itachi turned to look at Harry. The way he'd said that, as if he was discussing the weather, not his possible death.
"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not... And either must die at the hands of the other for neither can live while the other survives...The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies... Nice huh? Could have been me or another boy but Voldemort picked me. Maybe because of the similarities between us, both halfbloods. He's been after me since I was born. He killed my parents when I was one and tried to kill me but it backfired and he was left as a spirit for thirteen years. He got his body back two years ago and went straight back to killing. Every year since I started learning magic he's tried to kill me and so far I've been lucky, but how long can my luck last?" Itachi simply stared at him. Okay, so he wasn't the only one to have a bad life. Maybe...maybe that was why they were here? To help each other, even if it was just by listening. Itachi took a deep breath; maybe he could trust Harry with his own story.
"I come from one of the hidden villages, and trained all my life to be a Shinobi..."
Itachi looked around the clearing for Harry but couldn't see him. He frowned, he only ever came here when Harry did so where was he? A low, pained moan answered that question and had him running across the grass. He dropped to his knees beside his friend and carefully rolled him onto his back.
"Harry what happened?" Green eyes flickered open but didn't focus on him.
"Harry say something." Itachi began running through the hand seals for a healing jutsu even as he spoke. He didn't know if it would help but he didn't know what else to do. Besides Kisame Harry was the only friend he had, if the other teen was truly real and not something his mind had created.
"Voldemort." Harry groaned and tried to get away from Itachi.
"Don't move Harry, you'll make it worse.
"No, stay away." Itachi flinched and withdrew his hand.
"Won't tell." He blinked in confusion before it hit him, Harry really wasn't seeing him, he was stuck in the memory of what had happened to him or even what was happening. Was it possible for Harry's mind to have retreated here while under torture?
"Harry its me, Itachi. I won't hurt you. Come on, focus on me." He slowly reached out and kept his hand on Harry this time even when he tried to flinch back.
"Focus on my voice Harry, you're in the glade with me. No one can hurt you here. Come back Harry." He watched, relieved as Harry's eyes began to focus on him.
"Itachi?" Harry coughed and groaned, clutching his ribs.
"I'm here Harry."
"It hurts so much." Now that Harry wasn't trying to get away from him he tried the jutsu again and relaxed as it seemed to work. Harry sighed in relief and uncurled a bit. Itachi froze as the younger teen moved so that he was laying half in Itachi's lap.
"Don't let go." Harry murmured and Itachi cautiously wrapped his arms around the slender form, realising that Harry needed the touch to stay grounded.
"Voldemort attacked Hogsmeade while the school was there. There were so many screams. Ginny!" Itachi tightened his grip as Harry began to sob.
"She was just laying there, she wouldn't get up. I tried, I really did but..."
"You were too late to do anything for her." He felt Harry nod. He knew Harry had seen death before but not like he had or in the same quantities.
"One of them must have seen me, next thing I remember is waking up in front of Tom. They chucked me in a cell sometime later and then I was here. I don't want to wake up Itachi."
"You'll have to Harry or you won't be able to escape. I know it hurts but you have to fight. In some ways you remind me of Sasuke, both stubborn and strong. You will escape Harry because you have to." Harry nodded again.
"I managed to heal the worst of your injuries but I don't know how that will translate in the real world."
"S'okay. I'm used to beatings. I'll manage and I will escape." Itachi smiled slightly as determined emerald eyes met his. Harry would escape, or die trying.
"Don't drop your guard!" Itachi yelled causing Harry to glare at him. He grinned at the other teen, his glares weren't at all scary but he wasn't going to say anything. Last time he had he had spent the rest of the night as a newt, not an experience he wanted to repeat. After Harry had recovered from his time in Voldemort's hands Itachi had offered to train Harry in the Shinobi arts and after three nights thought Harry had agreed. After all, it wasn't like his own people were giving him the training necessary to kill Tom and hopefully survive the experience. And it wasn't like Itachi could get in any more trouble than he was already in with his village for teaching Harry things only a leaf nin should know. While Harry was fast for someone with no training his physical condition had been sorely lacking. That was the first thing he had decided to fix. He had designed an easy to follow training program for the clearing and the real world that hopefully wouldn't draw too much attention to Harry. He'd even convinced him to sign up for martial arts lessons. Apparently it had not been a fun experience convincing his relatives to let him do so. Itachi was itching to meet said relatives and show them what he thought of the way they treated Harry but that was impossible, at least as far as they knew. His grin widened as he hurled a handful of shuriken at Harry who managed to dodge them all although more through luck than skill.
"Slave driver!" Harry yelled before dodging another attack. He smirked as Harry went back to his workout. He knew he was pushing him hard but he didn't have a choice. Harry never spoke of what had been done to him in the three days it took for him to escape but it had to have been bad. Harry had never feared him before but now there were occasions when he would see Itachi's eyes and flinch back. They only had a few more days before Harry's birthday and the day when his relatives would kick him out. He had to be able to better defend himself without magic before then, even if it meant simply being able to outrun his attackers and being to fast to hit.
Two hours later he finally let Harry stop and the other teen collapsed into the grass next to him. They sat in silence for a while, just enjoying the time away from reality and their lives. Itachi suddenly frowned as he became aware of a voice calling him.
"Kisame's calling me, he sounds worried."
"Better wake up then. See you next time." Harry smiled as the glade faded and Itachi woke up. He sat up and groaned. Hunter-nin, joy.
Chapter 2: Chapter 2
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
Well, so far so good. The reviewers from mediaminer say they like this even though everyone is OOC and it is AU. Bare in mind I am new to Naruto and if something from any series doesn't fit I'll change it, I mean I have the war against Oz going for how long in Surrey Trouble? This chapter is pretty much just snapshots as time passes, showing various important events as they get to know each other.
"Well, that was fun." Itachi shot Kisame a glare.
"You nearly died and I had to carry you out of there. Exactly how does that count as fun?" Itachi sat back and surveyed his handiwork.
"You won't bleed to death anytime soon. Still, we should stay here for a few days to let you heal."
"Sure you don't want to stay just so you're not too tired to meet up with Harry?" Kisame asked slyly.
"You're not too badly hurt for me not to hit you."
"Face it Itachi, you like the kid."
"He's only two years younger than me. Besides it's his birthday soon."
"Not like you can get him anything." Kisame shrugged and then winced slightly. Okay, maybe he had been a little careless against those hunters but it had been fun.
"So you don't think I'm crazy?"
"Itachi you've been crazy for years. Do I think you've gotten crazier? No. If anything you've been calmer since the dreams started. Are the dreams actually real? Who knows?" Itachi started at his friend in shock.
"Thanks, I think."
"No problem, now get to sleep. Harry's probably worried." Itachi threw a rock in Kisame's general direction since he didn't actually want to kill him.
"I'm going to try to teach you a jutsu tonight." Harry sat up from where he'd been laying in the grass, trying to catch his breath after his usual workout.
"Really? Do you think it'll work?"
"You managed to find your chakra when awake so I don't see why not. I'm going to teach you henge. From what you've told me it seems to have the same basic results as your glamour magic. It will help you stay hidden once you leave home."
"That's great! When do we start?"
"I did it! No one suspected a thing. It was brilliant! Thank you so much!" Itachi froze as Harry threw his arms around him in an impulsive hug. Except for when he'd been tortured they had rarely touched outside of training. Itachi forced himself to relax and hugged Harry back. He knew that like him Harry had not received a lot of physical affection as a child so he couldn't push him away. Sasuke had been the most physical of his family and Itachi had tolerated it, pity these days it was his fists that Sasuke wanted to use on him. He'd just ignore that little voice in his head that sounded suspiciously like Kisame that was telling him he wasn't pushing him away because he actually really liked the hug.
"So what happened?" Itachi stepped back and sat down, Harry flopping gracelessly down beside him.
"I snuck out when Tonks went on duty as my guard, it was easy. Once I was away from Privet Drive I used henge to change my appearance and to look older. Caught the Knight bus to Diagon Alley and went straight to Gringotts. Not even the goblins could see through my disguise so a wizard has no chance. I had to drop it in private to prove my id. Turns out Sirius has a will and that I'm his heir, something I should have found out last year! Get this; Dumbledore's been funding his little group using my inheritance, the Potter's and now the Black's. I really need to talk to him about that, preferably in front of Rita Skeeter. For now I've blocked him from all of my accounts. Then, on my way to muggle London I saw Ron and Hermione. I decided to eavesdrop for a bit, very Slytherin of me I know. But watching Hermione punch Ron like that was brilliant! His being a lying bastard I could have done without though. Apparently Dumbledore's been paying him and his family, once again from my money, to be my friend and fill him in on everything I do. He let slip to Hermione so she let her fist slip, right into his nose. Good to know I'm not a total failure when it comes to judging the loyalty of friends. I listened for a bit and then headed for the real estate. I am now the proud owner of a penthouse apartment in a lovely area of London. I move in on August first. How was your day?" Itachi stared at Harry in shock, still trying to sort out exactly what Harry had said. So it came as a bit of a shock when he suddenly broke down into tears.
"How could Ron do that to me? I would have died to protect him and all he cared about was my money!" Itachi hesitantly reached out and pulled the distraught teen into his arms, letting him cry and scream as much as he needed to.
"If there's a way to get to your world I'll find it! I just can't take this much longer." Itachi smiled slightly at that. Life would certainly be interesting if Harry where around, that was for sure. It was a good thing he knew of no way to Harry's world or he would really be guilty of a clan massacre, just not the one he was accused of.
"Happy Birthday!" This time Itachi initiated the hug and Harry smiled brightly at him. His training was coming along well and in a few hours he would leave his 'family' behind forever. Life for Harry was definitely looking up.
"Thanks! So, can I have the night off from training as a present? We could just talk or something." Itachi made a show of thinking about it before nodding. Harry had been working hard and one night wouldn't hurt.
"Want to hear what I set up for my loving normal family?" Harry's grin was pure evil.
"Will I hear their screams from my world?"
"It's possible. Good thing I plan to be long gone before they get up. The twins sent me a 'care package' so I decided to put it to good use caring for my family. By the time I'm finished with them their beloved 'normality' will be nothing but a fond memory." Both snickered slightly at that. They sat quietly in their usual positions, Itachi leaning against one of the trees lining the edge of the clearing and Harry lying flat out on the grass beside him. Itachi smiled as he listened to exactly how Harry had booby trapped the house and felt proud, some of those techniques he'd taught the Wizard himself and if they could get a ninja then Harry's relatives didn't stand a chance. He didn't notice when his hand dropped down to gently stroke Harry's hair and Harry didn't say anything to bring it to his attention.
"Itachi? Where are you?" Harry couldn't hide the concern in his voice. It had been almost a week since he'd last been drawn into the glade and now he was here but there was no sign of his best friend and trainer.
'What would you do to help him?' Harry looked around wildly, trying to see who had spoken but he was alone.
"Who's there?" Harry mentally conjured a kunai and got ready to fight if necessary. It was odd that he called a ninja weapon instead of preparing a spell but using magic here felt weird.
'You hardly need that with me young Gryffindor.' There was a flash of flames and Fawkes was hovering a few feet in front of him.
"Fawkes? How? What is this place really?"
'There is no time, your friend needs your help.'
"But how can I help? I don't know where he is!"
'Lie down and sleep. The path between you lies in dreams, so it is through dreams that you can reach him.' Harry stared at the phoenix for a few seconds before deciding to trust it. He lay down in the grass under their tree and closed his eyes. He smiled slightly as Fawkes began to sing and willingly surrendered to the pull of sleep, aided by the haunting song.
Harry opened his eyes and stared around. If it weren't for the fact that his scar didn't hurt he would think he was having a vision. He took a step forward and tried to touch a wall only for his hand to go right through it as if he were a ghost. How was he meant to help Itachi if he couldn't touch anything? He took a closer look at his surroundings; the hall he was in was empty and kind of gave him the creeps. He nearly jumped as a door swung open and cloaked figures entered. Even though everything was in black and white he could recognise them from Itachi's description when he had told him about the organization he was hiding in. This was starting to look very bad for Itachi and possibly his friend Kisame too since he couldn't see the other man anywhere. On the plus side no one seemed to be able to see him either.
"Bring the traitors." At least he could hear what was going on. Harry gasped, as Itachi and Kisame were dragged in. he struggled to keep hold of his temper as they were tossed onto the cold stones and left there. He watched as Itachi stirred and pushed himself to his knees a few seconds before Kisame.
"Itachi." Harry breathed, worried that if he could hear them they might hear him. Surprisingly Itachi looked straight at him but from the looks of it he wasn't sure if he was really seeing Harry or a figment of his mind.
"I'm here Itachi, just hold on. Remember, just like you told me." He smiled at his friend, trying to be brave for his sake.
Harry watched as the two were but through an utter farce of a trial before being found guilty, not that there could have been any other verdict from those people. He stared in horror as the sentence was declared, death by burning. He couldn't tear his eyes away from the scene as every person in the room began a set of hand seals that were very familiar from a lesson Itachi had given him just last week. He remained frozen until the resulting fire reached the midpoint between the accused and their accusers.
"NO!" Without thought Harry moved until he was standing directly between the two groups and threw up a hand, his magic visibly swirly around his form. From the multiple gasps he realised he was now visible to more than Itachi. The fire slammed to a stop not an inch from his palm, impacting against a wall of pure magic and being absorbed.
"Harry?" Kisame asked very quietly.
"Harry." Itachi stated, shocked. He'd guessed Harry was powerful since he had a prophecy hanging over his head dealing with an incredibly powerful enemy but he'd never really seen Harry use magic, not like this. But how was Harry here and as some sort of spirit? Emerald eyes turned to meet his gaze for a second before turning back to the others.
Harry focused his magic, acting purely on instinct and threw back a wave of power three times more powerful than the fire he had stopped. As people were tossed into walls like dolls he summoned a loose pit of scroll and pushed magic into it, turning it into a crude portkey. He threw it at Itachi and Kisame.
"Go!" Itachi nodded and grabbed the piece of paper, keeping a firm grip on Kisame. Harry relaxed as they vanished.
Itachi lay gasping for air, Kisame half on top of him. No wonder Harry hated those things.
"What the hell was that?"
"Portkey, a method of travel from Harry's world."
"At least we now know for sure that he's real. But how?"
"Don't know, I'll ask him next time I see him."
"Hope he got out okay. Where are we anyway?" Itachi didn't need to sit up to know where they were.
"The glade. It's the only place Harry knows here since we meet here in our dreams. It also means we are far to close to Konoha to be safe."
"Yeah, well let me know when you can move and I'll follow you." Kisame groaned as he rolled off his friend.
"I want to be sure Harry's safe, keep watch?"
Itachi looked around the glade and smiled as he saw Harry asleep under their tree. But he tensed as he noticed the bird nearby.
'Harry is fine, he will awaken in a few seconds.' With that the bird vanished in a flash of flames. Not trusting it, after all how many birds can talk, he ran over to Harry. He swiftly checked his pulse and breathing before allowing himself to relax. Sure enough Harry began to stir even as he was removing his hand. Dazed green eyes blinked open before focusing on him.
"Itachi?" Harry suddenly bolted upright, nearly hitting Itachi.
"Merlin, are you alright? What about Kisame?"
"Bruised and tired but we'll be fine, thanks to you. At least we now know beyond a doubt that this is real."
"Brilliant way to test that fact. And thank the ruddy bird. I was worried but Fawkes told me you needed my help and showed me how."
"So that was Fawkes. But you're okay? The attack didn't hurt you?"
"I'm fine, I promise." Harry smiled shyly, not used to such concern from anyone other than Hermione.
"Good. I've never seen anything like what you did Harry, you saved our lives." Itachi frowned, as Harry seemed to close off.
"Harry? What's wrong?"
"Nothing. I'm glad you're both okay. Guess I'm tired." Harry gave a smile that was obviously false.
"Don't lie to me Harry. You know it won't work here." Itachi put his hand on Harry's shoulder only to feel him flinch. He thought about what he'd said and then back over all of their conversations. It suddenly hit him.
"Harry. You are my friend because you are you. Anyone else would have been scared of me but you accepted me. I don't care about how powerful you are or what you can do, except where it will keep you alive. You could be totally powerless and you'd still be Harry to me. Those people are just glory seeking idiots who don't know what they're missing out on." Harry looked away, ashamed of his reaction.
"I'm sorry." Itachi hugged him, ignoring the pain it ignited.
"Don't be, it's not your fault." Itachi let him go.
"I think it's safe to say training's cancelled tonight."
"No, really? You should probably get some deeper sleep anyway to heal or wake up and move if the glade isn't safe. I would have sent you somewhere else but it is the only place I know of."
"Trust me, its better then where we were."
"Yeah, it's missing the giant fireballs." Harry smiled a real smile this time.
"See you later Harry."
"School goes back tomorrow so I may be too tired for a few nights." Harry called as Itachi began to fade. He managed to see him nod before the glade vanished.
Chapter 3: Chapter 3
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
I was honestly surprised by all the encouraging reviews I've gotten for this fic. I originally wasn't going to post it due to the characters being so OOC and my pitiful knowledge of Naruto outside of others fics but now I'm glad I decided to take a chance.
People have been asking if one of the guys will end up in the others world, especially after Harry's ghostly intervention. The answer is yes though I'm not telling whom until it happens. A lot of fics have magic and chakra being the same thing but here they are completely different so while Harry is able to use both that does not mean that everyone who uses magic can use chakra and the other way around. Seeing as everyone has assumed it is HarryItachi and seems to like that idea I'm going with it. Now on with the story!
This chapter will focus more on the HP world to show exactly how much having someone to talk with and who genuinely cares has changed Harry.
Harry stared out the window as the civilisation vanished to leave wide-open country. So far he'd managed to avoid his friends so he was alone in his compartment and he was happy to stay like that. He'd have to start acting soon enough as it was. Or would he? Should he tell Ron what he thought of him now? He knew he was going to get called to the Headmasters office due to his vanishing act over the summer but he didn't really care. Harry turned as the door slid open to reveal a familiar blond.
"Either come in and sit down or move on Draco. Standing in the doorway is going to attract attention I would rather avoid." Harry stated as he turned back to the window. He held back a smirk as he saw Malfoy's expression reflected in the glass.
"Who are you and what did you do to Potter?" Draco asked as he slipped inside and settled on the seat opposite Harry. Harry laughed.
"Oh its me Malfoy. Lets just say I found out a few things this summer that forced me to re-evaluate a lot of my beliefs. Don't get me wrong; I'll still hex you if you call Hermione a Mudblood but Ron? Well, lets just say its open season shall we?"
"So the Golden Trio is no more?"
"It never existed apparently. Do what you want to him; he's a backstabbing glory hound and no friend of mine. So, how was your summer?"
"Not bad, Mother and I spent a lot of time in Paris. She loves travelling, I actually spent a lot of my childhood there before Hogwarts."
"It sounds wonderful. I've never been out of England except for school."
"Your relatives don't like to travel?"
"Oh, they love it. Taking the resident Freak however?" Draco stared at him in shock.
"Don't believe everything you hear. My family and I share a mutual dislike of each other, although on their side it's more like hatred."
"Then why do you stand up for Muggles?"
"Because for everyone bad one there are at least five good ones. It's the same with Wizards. In the end, we're all human. So since you were in Paris I'm guessing you haven't joined the club?" Draco stared at him blankly before he realised what he was saying.
"I...No. That was the reason we left. Mother didn't want." He stopped and Harry nodded.
"Do you want to join?" Draco stared at him, unsure what to do. On one hand he was talking to the poster boy for the light, on the other this Potter was a lot different to the one he usually fought with and he could use someone to talk with.
"It's your choice Draco, no one can make it for you. However I will listen if you need to talk and I won't say anything to anyone unless of course you admit you're going to kill someone at school or something."
"Why?" Harry shrugged.
"Everyone needs someone to talk to. I found someone over the summer and it let me sort out a lot of things I didn't even realise I needed to sort out. If you do decide not to join don't go to Dumbledore." Draco stared at him in shock.
"For now lets just say he isn't exactly what he makes everyone believe. I have no doubt he'll be calling me in for a nice little chat at some point since I managed to get away from my babysitters for most of the summer."
"Nice to see you thinking for yourself Potter."
"Thanks, and it's Harry." He extended his hand and Draco slowly took it. They began talking about various things as the train continued on its way to Hogwarts, keeping the conversation light to let Draco think things through. Both looked up as the door slid open and Hermione stood frozen in shock.
"Are you coming in Granger? We've managed to keep the groupies out this long however you just standing there will attract attention." Hermione stared at him and then Harry, not sure what to do. Harry's warm smile had her stepping inside and sitting beside him.
"Harry, there's something you need to know. It's about the Weasley's. I..." Harry took her hand and squeezed it comfortingly.
"I know Mione. I was there that day when you punched Ron. I heard everything. Thank you for standing up for me like that." He hugged he gently.
"You should be glad she punched you in third year Draco, her punches appear to have gotten a lot harder since then." Draco chuckled slightly.
"She hit hard enough back then. I'm sure the Weasel deserved it Granger."
"Harry? What's going on?"
"I better go find the 'groupies' before they find us and storm in."
"I meant what I offered Draco." The blond paused with a hand on the door. He nodded slightly and then left.
"Harry?" Hermione was nervous. Something was different about Harry and she wasn't sure what. There was no way he'd side with Malfoy's views, was there?
"It's okay Mione. I'll tell you everything." Harry smiled softly at her and she relaxed, no he was still her Harry.
"Ah, Harry my boy. Come in. Lemon drop?"
"No thank you." Harry sat and made himself comfortable. Unknown to the old man his hands were already part way through forming hand seals in case he needed a quick get away. He turned to look at Fawkes as the phoenix let out an amused trill and shook out his feathers before settling more comfortably. The bird obviously knew this was going to get interesting.
"No Harry, you caused a great amount of worry with your disappearing act this summer. I understand that you suffered during your captivity and that you feel bad over Miss Weasley's death but that was no reason to put yourself in unnecessary danger. You know you are only safe as long as you remain with your family."
"Frankly sir it is none of your business where I go or what I do outside of school. You are my Headmaster not my guardian."
"No. I am not a pawn on your chessboard Dumbledore. I will fight riddle because he must be stopped, not for you or your precious Order. You can no longer take my money and I the only reason I haven't thrown you out of Grimmauld place is that I have no desire to live there myself. You are manipulative and in some ways as bad as Tom. You have known since I was born that I would have to face him and yet what have you done to prepare me for my fate? You left me in the care of my oh so loving muggle family. A family that decided to starve and beat the magic out of me, that kept me locked in a cupboard for ten years. You manipulated my life in the Wizarding world from the word go. You sent Hagrid to collect me and then paid the Weasley's to befriend me. Oh yes, I know all about that. Ronald really needs to learn to watch what he says in public. Every year I asked you why Tom is after me and every year you denied me an answer. And when I do find out you claimed you wanted me to have a normal childhood. Tell me sir, how many children do you know of that are treated the way I have been? I will not play your game any more Dumbledore." Harry spat, breathing heavily and struggling to control his temper.
"I am sorry you feel that way Harry. It is obvious that your capture has affected you more than I originally believed. I can not risk you going Dark and it is obvious you have started down that path." Harry saw the wand move and quickly finished the last hand seal. Instead of him the spell hit the bowl he had replaced himself with, giving him plenty of time to get out of the office. Using chakra to increase his speed he ran along the ceiling towards the dungeons. He only hoped he hadn't judged the man wrongly.
Itachi smiled as he saw Harry leaning against their tree. They hadn't seen each other since the rather spectacular rescue and he was eager to hear how his friend had been. His smile vanished as he got a closer look at the other teen.
"Harry? What happened?" Itachi dropped to his knees beside his friend.
"Thanks for teaching me how to do replacement or who knows what I'd be like now."
"What do you mean?" The worry was clear in Itachi's voice.
"Dumbledore called me in for a chat like I figured he would. I told him it was none of his business what I did outside of school and that I knew what he had been doing. He decided I'm going Dark and shot off a spell. Luckily I had the hand seals all but complete so the spell hit a bowl and I ran to Professor Snape. I told him what was going on and he gave a Magical Oath to keep my secrets and let me stay for the night. I don't know what the spell was but I'd guess it was to knock me out or make me susceptible to suggestion. What am I going to do? I have to finish my education but how can I with Dumbledore in control?"
"You're a celebrity right?"
"So go to the press. Reveal him for what he is. Use your money and influence." Itachi said, wishing more than anything that he could do more to help.
"I do that and I'll end up dividing our forces. I can't fight Tom and his Death Eaters alone."
"True but anyone with sense will realise that siding with someone like Dumbledore is stupid so you shouldn't loose too many." Harry nodded slowly.
"I'm scared." Harry whispered.
"Everything's moving so fast now." Harry leant against Itachi and the ninja wrapped his arms around him.
"I wish I could do more to help." Itachi whispered.
"You have helped a lot. If I hadn't had you to talk to I don't know what I would have done." Harry smiled up at him warmly. Itachi smiled back and leant down slightly even as Harry stretched up towards him. He froze as their lips brushed, waiting for Harry to push him away but it didn't happen. They stayed like that for a few minutes, leaving the kiss at just a light brush before pulling back. Itachi looked at Harry closely and the younger teen smiled shyly, no sign of regret or disgust on his face or in his eyes.
"Harry." He started only for Harry to put a finger over his lips.
"I like you Itachi, a lot. I know the odds of our ever having something are pretty non-existent what with the whole different worlds thing but can't we try? I don't care that you're a wanted man there; I know you're innocent and that's enough. You...you see me. Not the Boy-Who-lived or James Potters son but me, Harry. Please?" Itachi nodded slowly.
"I like you Harry, I have for a while now. Kisame noticed it first and I didn't want to believe him. But I can't ignore it any longer." Harry smiled brightly at him and leant back in. Their second kiss was less unsure but still light. Neither had much experience after all and this was very new to them.
"Don't think this means I'm going to go easy on you in training."
"Wouldn't dream of it." Harry snuggled closer and sighed.
"I should wake up and get to the press before Dumbledore has a chance but I don't want to leave."
"I'll see you soon Harry, you're right. You should go, I don't want him to hurt you anymore than he has." Itachi kissed him softly goodbye.
"I'll be back tonight if I can." Itachi nodded and Harry faded away, still smiling at him.
Harry sat up on the couch Snape had let him sleep on. He smiled softly and touched his lips, remembering their kisses before slipping quietly into the bathroom to neaten up. He jumped in surprise as he left it.
"You startled me Professor." Snape nodded.
"A little late to be up and about."
"I've been thinking. Dumbledore has decided I'm going Dark, what's to stop him going to the press or government about it? It would be a way to get control of me back."
"Agreed. So what will you do?"
"I need to beat him to them. The goblins have proof of his theft and it's about time I started using my stupid fame for something." Harry looked at him, waiting for a comment about how much like his father he was but it never came.
"You'll need backing from at least one family. The Weasley's are obviously out, as am I due to my dubious loyalties. The Longbottom's could be a possibility if you had time but they are not quite your equals in station."
"What is your opinion of Draco? Do you think he'll take the mark?" Snape raised an eyebrow and Harry shrugged.
"We talked on the train. I think I nearly gave him a heart attack when I told him to shut the door and sit down." Harry chuckled slightly at the memory.
"He seemed confused to me."
"Narcissa took him to Paris so that he couldn't be given the Mark on his birthday as he should have had. Draco is spoilt and can be a bully but I think actually being exposed to some of the life of a Death Eater since the Dark Lord's return has shocked some sense into him. You are thinking of him?"
"He's got the family station and money if he can disconnect himself from his father's shadow."
"I will speak with him now. If you want to beat Dumbledore you need to go now. Get your proof from Gringotts and then got to the Prophet, there is some staff there all night." Harry nodded and stood, moving to the fireplace and the Floo powder.
"Wait." Harry turned back
"You can hardly go in school robes. Change into your dress ones, if I remember correctly they are at last presentable." Harry nodded and disappeared back into the bathroom to change.
"Thank you sir." Snape nodded and Harry disappeared into the Floo.
"Hey." Harry leant in for a tentative kiss and Itachi wrapped his arms around him.
"Are you okay?"
"Spent the whole night and most of the day with the prophet and then at the ministry. Turns out I totally beat him to the press and just to the ministry. They're bringing charges against him, the trials in a month. I'll have to testify under Veritaserum."
"You'll do fine. Come on, let's get you training."
"Sir, yes, Sir." Harry grinned and took off.
"Brat." Itachi stated fondly before taking off after him, kunai in hand.
"Breath Potter." Harry nodded numbly at Draco's instruction, still in shock. They'd done it. The verdict was unanimous; Albus Dumbledore had been stripped of all titles and positions and wouldn't be seeing daylight for a long time. All it had taken was Harry making a stand for several dozen others to come forward and press charges against the aging Wizard. Only Draco's firm grip on his arm kept him from bolting as the approached the exit where they could already hear the shouts of the press and various people who had not been able to get inside.
"How dare you!" Both teens fought a flinch at the shrill voice of Molly Weasley. The irate woman grabbed Harry's arm, pulling him away from Draco.
"You ungrateful little brat! Albus warned us you were going Dark and this proves it! Consorting with a Death Eater to imprison such a great man!"
"A great man because he uses other peoples money to line your pockets Molly?" Harry spat, finally pulling his arm free.
"For your information Draco is not a Death Eater, just because his father licks that hypocrites boots does not mean he does. Draco is a good friend to both Hermione and I, a far better friend then your pathetic family. How much exactly did Dumbledore pay you to 'befriend the poor little orphan'?" Harry was well aware that the media could hear every word but he didn't care. He could see Draco smirking out of the corner of his eye, a smirk that turned to a look of shocked horror.
"Harry!" He spun back to Molly only for her open palm to connect with his face with considerable force. He staggered back slightly but didn't fall thanks to his training, not that it made the blow hurt any less. Aurors were on the group in seconds, pulling the Weasley matriarch away and surrounding the two teens for their safety.
"Merlin, are you all right?" Draco tilted his face to look at where he'd been hit.
"I'm okay, just shocked, never thought she'd do that in public."
"Yes, well the press will certainly have a field day with the pictures of that."
"Harry! Draco! What happened?" Hermione shoved her way past the Aurors and to their side.
"Just Mrs. Weasley expressing her anger at my actions. Nothing to get worked up over."
"Oh you were brilliant in there." Harry stumbled in shock as Hermione threw her arms around him.
"Uh, thanks Mione. Could you let go though? I do need to breath at some point."
"Well done Mr. Potter." The teens looked up and smiled at their Potions Professor.
"Thank you sir. Come on, lets get out of here and celebrate."
"It's finished." Harry said as he collapsed beside his friend? Boyfriend? What exactly was he meant to call him?
"Are you okay?"
"Exhausted. I got questioned and then cross-examined and then they made me take Veritaserum. Then after the verdict I had to face a very mad Molly Weasley and then the press. After that we went out and celebrated. Remind me to never touch Firewhisky again! I have such a headache!" Harry's groan turned to one of relief as Itachi sent healing chakra into him, easing the pain.
"Your welcome. So I'll assume he was found guilty?"
"Yep. All it took was me to start things and a whole lot pf people stepped forward wanting to ad charges. There is a nice cell in Azkaban with Dumbledore's name on it."
"Good. I don't want that man anywhere near you." Itachi kissed him lightly and Harry snuggled in closer. Itachi smiled, he no longer minded the physical contact that Harry seemed to crave and was quite willing to give it. That did not extend to anyone else though as Kisame had found out the hard way, he was still nursing the bruises. So far he'd managed to keep his friend from learning of the change in his relationship with Harry and he hoped to keep it that way for as long as possible, last thing he needed was for the other man to start gloating.
"Voldemort's going to have a field day though. Dumbledore was the only thing keeping him from attacking Hogwarts. Now that he's gone..."
"You'll need to increase the defences. I've taught you how to do that and plan for an assault. Believe in yourself Harry, I do." Harry nodded and they fell silent, content to just sit together.
"How's Harry?" Itachi looked at Kisame as they travelled through the treetops.
"Worried. He did just cause the so called most powerful light wizard to get sent to prison after all."
"Yeah, nice job. Give him my congratulations." Itachi nodded and they fell silent. Since they're rescue by Harry they had kept moving constantly, only stopping to sleep. They simply had too many people after them now. Kisame groaned and Itachi shook his head, joining his partner in turning to face the latest group of attackers. Life was getting very predictable.
Chapter 4: Chapter 4
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
Itachi dodged a blow from Kakashi with only half of his mind on the fight. It had been three days since he'd last seen Harry and he was more than a little worried since Harry's departure had been more than a little sudden. His eyes flicked to the side where Kisame was keeping two others occupied. Itachi went to throw some shuriken but froze, looking around wildly. Kakashi had stoped too he noticed but the other three were still fighting.
"What are you doing?" Kakashi asked, he hadn't seen Itachi use any seals.
"I'm not doing this. But I think I might know what it is." He frowned as transparent stonewalls lit by torches appeared around them.
"An ally?" Kakashi asked suspiciously, still ready to move at any moment. By now the forest had been completely replaced by the building and the stones had solidified. Itachi put his hand up to one only to find it passed through easily. It seemed to be the same thing that had happened to Harry but then how was Kakashi with him? Unless the Sharingan had something to do with it? The other had been using it in their fight after all.
"A friend who has nothing to do with our world." Pounding footsteps had both men tensing and the watched as three figures rounded the corner, obviously out of breath.
Kakashi saw Itachi take a half step towards one of them and readied himself for an attack.
"Did we lose them?" One, a blond male asked.
"For the moment." The only female answered.
"Are you alright Harry?"
"I'll be okay, just a headache." The final figure, and the one Itachi seemed to recognise answered.
"Further we get from him the better it'll get."
"We have to do something! We're the only ones free."
"Do what Granger? Commit suicide? Three teenagers against an army aren't exactly good odds."
"Someone needs to get out and warn the Ministry. The remaining two can at least cause some havoc till help arrives. They may be adults but thanks to the Weasley twins and my Dad's cloak we know the Castle better." The one called Harry stated.
"So who goes for help?" Granger asked.
"You do. Book smarts won't get far now and Harry and I are more powerful. Besides, Father taught me a thing or two about their tactics."
"Draco's right Hermione, you're the best choice." Harry smiled at her.
"You can do it Mione." The girl took a deep breath and nodded.
"No that that's sorted, how exactly is she meant to get out?"
"The one way only two people alive can use."
"The Chamber." Hermione whispered.
"You'll be fine. We'll stay with you until you're clear of the password areas. The tunnel leads out passed the Wards so you cam apparate immediately."
"Where exactly is the entrance to the Chamber?" Draco asked.
"Moaning Myrtle's, where else."
"Merlin help us." The three took off again but for a second green eyes focused on the two Shinobi and lit with recognition as they saw Itachi.
"Come on." Itachi said, taking off after them. Kakashi watched for a few seconds before deciding to follow, better than getting lost in a strange place. They followed the teens to a bathroom and watched as Harry searched the sinks.
"Found it. 'Open'." Everyone watched as the sink moved back, revealing a dark drop. Kakashi shivered slightly as the boy hissed, that did not sound natural. Once again Itachi instantly followed them.
"We must be heading for the Chamber of Secrets." Itachi commented.
"Wonder if the snake's still there?"
The snake was still there and from the way the three teens paled had obviously started to rot.
"Charming." Draco commented, earning two glares.
"What's the matter Draco? Can't stand the smell?"
"Honestly you two, we need to go!"
"Yes ma'am." Both boys answered simultaneously. Harry led the way confidently through the chamber and then the tunnels.
"This is as far as we go Mione. Be careful." He hugged her briefly.
"I will. You two be careful. Don't get caught."
"Those idiots catch us? Honestly Granger I thought you had a higher opinion of us then that."
"Oh shut up." Harry stared in shock as Hermione grabbed Draco and kissed him before bolting towards the exist. He had to muffle a laugh at the look on his friends face.
"Not one word Potter, not one word."
Harry slipped into an unused classroom to catch his breath and talk to his two ghostly followers.
"Are you okay Harry? What's happened?"
"Other than Voldemort deciding to invade the school, nothing much. They've got the students and staff locked up in the Great Hall at the moment but it's only a matter of time till they start killing and torturing them. Who's your friend?"
"Hatake Kakashi. He's my brother's sensei."
"Nice to meet you. How'd he get dragged along?"
"No idea, we were fighting till we ended up in that hall. I was worried when you disappeared so suddenly."
"The wards going off woke me. Haven't really had much sleep since, too busy trying to keep the Death Munchers outside. As you can tell we failed."
"Where are we?" Kakashi finally asked.
"Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. I'm Harry Potter by the way."
"Yes magic exists, well at least it does in this world. Look, Itachi can tell you all about it later if you decide not to try and kill each other but I have some idiots to annoy so if you'll excuse me." Harry slipped out of the room. Itachi swore as the castle began to fade and the forest reappear to reveal three rather shocked Shinobi.
"Harry?" Kisame asked from where he had the two leaf nin cornered.
"He's in trouble." Kisame snorted.
"And that's new?"
"Who was that boy?"
"You heard him, he's a Wizard by the name of Harry. Poor brat's got the fate of the world on his shoulders. He should be able to cause a bit of trouble using the jutsu's I taught him plus magic. He'd make a fine Shinobi." Itachi commented, confusing the others except Kisame. Wasn't he meant to be an insane mass murderer?
"Another day; lets go Kisame." With that the two missing nin were gone. Kakashi watched them go, something odd was definitely going on. The boy had obviously known and trusted Itachi and hadn't been scared of him at all and Itachi seemed sane. There was more to this then met the eye and he needed to inform the Hokage.
Nice and short I know. Consider it a lead up to the final battle in HP and the person who is switching worlds doing so.
Chapter 5: Chapter 5
Disclaimer: Unfortunately I don't suddenly own them.
I realised that although I said Harry was seventeen and Itachi nineteen I had the celebrating Harry's birthday quite a while after the met so Harry was actually sixteen. Oops.
Should I have other pairings? I will take suggestions on what they should be.
I have Tsunade as Hokage because she's the one in most of the fics I've read even though I know that I'm probably messing the messing the timeline up. Oh well.
"Kakashi-sensei, there's someone up ahead." Sakura said quietly. He nodded and the four spread out, ready for an attack. Looking down at the ground they saw a crumpled figure with a growing pool of blood surrounding him or her. Kakashi dropped to the ground and cautiously approached, weary of any traps. The three teens remained in the trees to keep watch. He knelt and carefully rolled the figure over; it was a young man with dark, messy hair and a lightning bolt scar. Kakashi froze for a second, he'd seen this boy once before.
"Harry." A low, pained moan answered him and unfocused green eyes fluttered open. What was Itachi's friend doing so close to Konoha and in such condition?
"Who?" Kakashi barely heard the question and it sounded like it hurt a lot for him to speak.
"Kakashi, I was with Itachi." The boy nodded slightly and then his eyes widened.
"Where?" Harry coughed and Kakashi decided to take a risk. He gently pulled him up to lean against a tree and his breathing became easier.
"Not far from Konoha."
"How? Last thing I remember...oh Merlin no." Kakashi stared as Harry simply passed out.
"Kakashi-sensei?" Naruto called.
"We're heading back. He needs medical attention." Kakashi lifted Harry easily; he was far too light for his age and build.
"Who is he?" Sakura asked as Kakashi rejoined them in the trees.
"His name is Harry. We need to hurry." With that they were off.
Harry groaned as light forced its way past his eyelids, sending sharp pain into his brain. Please say he hadn't decided to get drunk with Draco again, Hermione would kill them. He relaxed a bit, as the light was shaded, quite content to go back asleep.
"I know you are awake. I have some questions for you." The unfamiliar female voice had Harry's eyes snapping open. Without a thought he reached for his magic ready to fight or run if he had to. The first thing he noticed were the guards on the door and the woman near the bed; the second was that he was in a hospital, again. All of which was completely unfamiliar.
"Where am I?" He coughed and accepted the glass of water, subtly checking it for potions or poisons before drinking it. Okay so he was a little paranoid these days, you would be to if you'd nearly been killed how many times?
"Konoha hospital. I am Tsunade, the Godaime. One of our genin teams found you in the forest and brought you here for treatment." Harry sat, staring at her in shock. Konoha? But that meant... It was impossible, wasn't it?
"Kakashi told me a very interesting story, about having met you before." Harry focused back on what she was saying and nodded.
"So you are Harry Potter?" She stumbled over his name slightly.
"Yes ma'am. Thank you for healing my injuries." He answered politely. Tsunade smiled ever so slightly, at least he was polite. But he was still an unknown with ties to Itachi and that meant he was dangerous.
"What is your relationship with Uchiha Itachi?" Harry mentally groaned, fighting not to blush. He doubted she meant it that way. But it was a question he didn't really want to answer for fear they would lock him up or something.
"It's a rather long story. Would it be possible to get some food? I can't really remember when the last time I ate was. I can talk between bites." His stomach chose that moment to make its presence known and Harry did blush at that. She nodded and one of the guards left to get him some food. A few minutes later Harry was eating quickly but neatly, enjoying his first taste of their food.
"Thank you, that was very good. I've never eaten anything like it before."
"Your welcome. Now?"
"I met Itachi...okay I'm almost eighteen now and I was just sixteen so it would be about two years ago I guess. I hadn't realised it had been so long. Our first meeting was rather odd since neither of us had a clue what was going on or if the other was real." He paused to drink some more water.
"How could you not know if he was real?"
"Quite simple really since I knew I was at my relatives asleep in bed and yet there I was in a glade in a forest I'd never seen before. I think I thoroughly confused him that night actually. After that we saw each other nearly every night. He didn't talk much so I'd tell him about my day, stuff like that. Took a while but eventually he started to open up and we became friends I guess. It really helped, having someone to talk to while stuck at my Aunts that summer." Harry shut his eyes. He'd accepted Sirius' death and the part he had played init but that didn't mean it no longer hurt. Tsunade let him take his time; it was obvious he was remembering something painful.
"The closest person to a father I'd ever known had just died and it was partially my fault. For my so-called safety I wasn't allowed to contact anyone outside so being able to talk to Itachi helped. Pretty sure it stopped me going mad from grief and blaming myself."
"How was it your fault in any way?"
"Because I did something stupid and Sirius died coming to my rescue. Once I was back at school we didn't see as much of each other, we only shared dreams when we weren't exhausted. There was a village within walking distance of school were we would go some weekends. There was an attack and I was caught. After that Itachi decided I needed to learn how to fight. So he started working on getting my fitness up, I think I drove my guard up the wall with the runs I did around the neighbour." Harry smiled at that.
"Only one who could keep up was Tonks." Harry's smile faded as he remembered what had happened to the friendly Auror. She'd been captured, tortured and then killed at the beginning of his seventh year while out spying for Dumbledore. Tsunade sensed his sadness but had to ask.
"Why did you have guards?"
"For my safety, not that the Order was much use in a fight. For my entire life I've had a Dark Lord and his followers after me. After my fourth year the Order began following me around, didn't do much good. I had to break myself out the one time I was caught."
"Why are you so important?"
"Because I'm the freaking 'Boy-Who-Lived'. I survived the killing curse, the only one in history to do so." He lifted his hair revealing the unusual scar.
"I should have died as baby but for some reason it didn't work and ended backfiring on him. Unfortunately it didn't kill him, just split his spirit from his body. Anyway, on Itachi's advice I convinced my relatives to let me sign up for martial arts classes. A month later I turned seventeen and was out of there. Pulled a disappearing act on the Order and found out a few things about the so-called leader of the light that he would have rather I didn't. He confronted me at the start of school and it was only thanks to Itachi having taught me the replacement technique that I got out and ran to another teacher. It was Itachi who suggested I start actually using my fame to get things done so I went to the press and the government. A few months later Dumbledore was put on trial and sentenced to prison and the rest of my people finally pulled their heads out of the sand and started preparing for war. Oh, I also somehow ended up in this world at one point but as some sort of ghost like thing. Saved Itachi and his friend from getting fried by their ex-bosses, that was before I went back to school. Towards the end of the school year we were attacked. We kept them out of the castle for a day but then they overpowered the wards. Only three of us managed to stay free. Draco and I stayed behind after helping Hermione get out to get help. That was when I met Kakashi. He and Itachi showed up like I had when I rescued Itachi and followed me around for a bit before I found somewhere where I could stop and talk for a few seconds. Then I left and went back to causing trouble for the Death Eaters. The idea was to buy Hermione time to get back and keep as many of the students and teachers alive as possible. Turned into a month long game of tag since the creeps had put up their own wards to keep help out. The Ministry finally broke through and..."
"I...I don't know." He looked up at her in near panic.
"Why can't I remember what happened?"
"You were badly injured and nearly dead when Kakashi brought you in. The trauma may have affected your memory. With time you should remember." He nodded, calming down.
"What I have to decide now is wether or not you are a threat to Konoha." Harry looked back up at her.
"You have associated, physically or not with a known missing-nin for several years and have at least some ninja training. That is enough for some to want you killed." Harry paled.
"Great, survive the stupid prophecy to get killed in another world. My life officially sucks." He slumped against the pillows.
"That will not necessarily be your fate. How much has he taught you?"
"Henge, Kawarimi, Katon: Goukakyuu no Jutsu which I'm sort of getting the hang of. Other than that just how to fight, throw shuriken, that sort of thing. I can use a sword but I didn't learn that from him and I'm still learning." Harry shrugged, not bothered that he was leaving out his magical training, she hadn't asked. The last year had brought out more of his Slytherin side, much to Draco's amusement.
"I need to get back to work. For now, the team that found you has been asking about you. Feel up to visitors?"
"Sure, why not."
"A word of warning. Uchiha Sasuke was one of them, make no mention of knowing Itachi."
"Yes ma'am." She nodded and left and Harry relaxed, clearing his mind and reinforcing his occlumency shields. He stared out of the window visible from the bed, lost in thought. Obviously he had survived the fight but had he actually killed Voldemort? What had happened to everyone else? Did Itachi know he was alive or did he think he was dead?
"Hey! You're finally awake!" Harry jumped and looked around. He smiled at the younger teen that had spoken. Ninja certainly had interesting dress sense but orange?
"Seems like. Apparently I have you four to thank for still being alive." Harry laughed softly as the orange clad teen actually bounced around the room.
"Yep! We found you in the forest. You really didn't look good."
"I'm not surprised, um?"
"Oh. Naruto, Uzumaki Naruto. These are my teammates, Haruno Sakura and Uchiha Sasuke. The pervert with his head in the book is our sensei, Hatake Kakashi. Kakashi-sensei said your name is Harry."
"It's nice to meet you all. My name is Harry Potter. Though I suppose you would say Potter Harry. That just sounds weird."
"How do you know Kakashi-sensei?" Sakura asked.
"We've met once, very briefly." Harry said, watching the older man curiously.
"Are you a ninja? Where's you forehead protector? Are you a missing-nin?" Harry laughed honestly at the rapid questions.
"Naruto, give him time to answer." Kakashi said, watching Harry while still reading. He was curious about the teenager. He didn't seem the sort of person to make friends with the older Uchiha and yet they had been comfortable with each other.
"I'm not a ninja. My home is, well far away from here. We don't have Shinobi."
"Then who protects you?"
"Various people. Aurors for one, they're sort of a police force more than anything."
"Oh, are you an Auror?" Naruto stumbled over the strange word.
"No, I'm still in school, well I was. Should have graduated a month or so ago but it was put off. I was going to apply for Auror training though."
"School? How old are you? We finished school years ago!"
"It wasn't that long ago Naruto! Don't be rude!" Sakura yelled at him.
"It's okay, school for us lasts until your seventeen or eighteen, depending on the school. As for my age, I'll be eighteen this year." Harry honestly didn't mind the questions, he liked the blond already. Something about him was tickling his magical senses but wasn't setting any warnings off so he'd ignore it for now. It was nice talking to someone who had no idea who he was. He was observing Sasuke while talking; he could see the family resemblance between him and Itachi and Sasuke seemed like Itachi had been when they first met, cold and distant. But Harry could see the pain in those dark eyes, pain the boy believed his own brother was responsible for. Harry wished he could tell him otherwise but he couldn't ay anything, at least not yet.
"Who attacked you?" Harry blinked in surprise as Sasuke spoke and then shrugged.
"I don't remember. The lady who was in here before, um Tsunade? She said it could be from trauma and that I should eventually remember."
"The Hokage is a great healer, she healed many of your wounds herself." Kakashi said.
"The three of you should return to training. I wish to speak with Harry alone."
"I don't want to keep you from your training. Maybe you can visit again later?" With much grumbling on Naruto's part the three left.
"They seem like good kids." Kakashi nodded at Harry's observation.
"What did you want to talk to me about?" Harry leant back into the pillows, he was getting very tired, then again he couldn't remember when he'd last slept and Naruto's excitement plus the Hokage's questioning had worn him out.
"Your intentions towards Sasuke." Harry sat up instantly in shock.
"I saw you watching him. I will not allow you to harm any of my students."
"Whoa! Slow down sir. How dare... I would never, ever harm a kid. Yes I was watching him but out of curiosity, nothing more. Itachi speaks of him often and they look a lot alike. That's a big part of your way of life I dislike. Children should never be expected to fight and kill." Kakashi watched him carefully, his responses seemed honest.
"You were?" Harry nodded.
"Shortly after I was born there was a prophecy made about the one who would finally defeat the Dark Lord. Lucky me. I was fifteen when I finally found out about it and I'd just watched the only father figure I'd ever known die because of it. But I'd been in training since I was eleven without even knowing, he kept pushing me in the way of trouble and watching to see how I would do, how his little weapon was progressing and how soon he could truly pit me against Tom. I killed for the first time at eleven. It was self-defence but...I didn't even realise till later. All I knew was he had to be stopped so I touched him and he burned." Harry had curled up on the bed without realising it and Kakashi felt bad for asking.
"I hate killing, I know that sometimes its unavoidable but I still hate it."
"Get some rest. You'll need it if Naruto comes back to visit." Harry managed to give him a tired smiled before getting comfortable under the covers and drifting off.
"Your opinion Kakashi?" Kakashi stood slouched in Tsunade's office.
"He appeared genuinely upset by my suggestion that he was here to hurt Sasuke or Naruto. Apparently Itachi has spoken of Sasuke to him. The boy has lead a hard life but he is no killer unless given no other option."
"So you don't think his presence here is a trap?" Tsunade asked.
"No, his reactions were too honest. That is not to say that his presence could not be taken advantage of. If Itachi were to attack I do not know what he would do beyond not harming children. He sees my team as children though so that would put him at a disadvantage."
"There are those who would want him used to trap Itachi or simply be killed for liking him."
"I do not believe he is a threat. When I first saw him, he was one of three left free after their school was attacked. He stayed behind to distract the enemy, giving one of his companions the chance to go for help. He was fighting to protect children when he was little more than one himself and as he admitted he is not fully trained."
"Very well, for now the council will remain ignorant. As far as anyone knows he was a simple traveller who ran afoul of bandits. But he will be watched."
"I volunteer my team to watch him."
"Agreed. For now he will remain in the hospital but once released I want him to live with you, at least until we're positive about his intentions."
"As you wish." Kakashi left via the window to her annoyance. She looked over the medical file she had made for Harry Potter. Yes, he had had a hard life. She shook her head sadly; no child should have scars like that.
"Morning Harry!" Harry turned from the window to smile at his most frequent visitor for the past two weeks.
"Good morning Naruto."
"Hey, you're out of bed!"
"Yes, I can leave tomorrow so it was decided I'm well enough to be up." He walked back to the bed and sat on the edge, patting a spot next to him for Naruto. The blond jumped up ext to him.
"So what have you been up to?"
"Just boring missions. Next Chuunin exam is in a few months and Kakashi-sensei said he's going to enter us again."
"Congratulations. That's the next rank right?"
"Yep! Iruka-sensei's a chuunin. The last exam got interrupted by an attack." Harry nodded, Itachi had told him about it, and the mark given to his little brother. It sounded too much like the Dark Mark for comfort and in some ways even worse.
"What'll happen when they let you out of here?"
"I don't know yet."
"I hope you stay. I... well, I."
"Don't have a lot of friends do you?" Harry smiled softly as he saw Naruto freeze. He gave the younger teen a comforting pat on the arm.
"I know what that's like. Because of my cousin and his gang I had no friends as a child, they scared them all away and beat up anyone who tried to talk to me."
"Because I was different to them. It got better when I started at Hogwarts; I made a few friends but not a lot. And there, everyone knew who I was because of what happened when I was a baby and a lot of people only wanted to be my friend so they could say they knew me. It wasn't until the last year that I really found out who my true friends were. It's not the amount of friends you have that matters Naruto but the quality. One friend who will stand by you even to the death is better than a hundred who will turn their backs on you when there's trouble." Harry let Naruto think about that in silence, content to stare out the window until the younger boy wanted to talk.
"Are we friends?"
"I hope so." Tsunade smiled from her place just outside the door. She really hoped Harry was genuine for Naruto's sake. He could do with all the friends he could get and it sounded like Harry needed the same.
"Good to see you up Harry." She said, walking in and acting as if she hadn't been listening at the door. The smile Harry shot her let her know he'd known she was there.
"Thanks to you. The nurse said I'd be able to leave tomorrow. Guess I'd like to know what happens next." She could hear a twinge of nervousness in his voice though he hid it well.
"Kakashi has agreed to let you live with him for the time being. Speaking of Kakashi, shouldn't you be at training brat?"
"Oops. By Harry!" Naruto bolted from the room leaving Harry to laugh.
"I'm guessing you want to talk to me alone?"
"As far as the village knows you are a travel who was attacked by bandits on the road and found by Team 7. Despite your ties to a known criminal I am allowing you to stay here."
"With Kakashi keeping an eye on me? I understand ma'am, I'd probably do the same if I were you."
"If Itachi were to attack what would you do?" She studied him closely, glad to see he was thinking about his answer and not just giving the answer he thought she wanted to hear.
"I...I couldn't just sit by and watch him hurt children but I wouldn't want to fight him either. I don't know if I could. Guess it'd come down to bodily placing myself between him and his target and finding out if he's willing to kill me or not." Harry swallowed his pain. He would never stand by and watch people die but the idea of fighting Itachi made him feel sick.
"I understand. If Konoha were to fall under attack in general?" That needed less thought.
"I'd help in any way I could." He met her eyes and she smiled.
"Good. I hope you never have to find out if he could kill you or not." She moved to leave.
"Since the bandits took everything but the clothes from your back you will be given money to buy clothes and other necessities until you can work out what to do for work."
Don't worry, you will find out what happened but you'll have to wait for Harry to decide he's ready to remember.
How badly OOC is everyone? I figure Harry's eighteen (well, nearly), knows Itachi and has survived a war so he's grown up a bit.
Chapter 6: Chapter 6
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
I got some comments on Harry's talkativeness. He's just been dumped in a different world and is missing who knows how big a chunk of his memory plus he was nearly dead, so he's a bit off balance and more willing to talk add to that the fact that he knows they could decide to imprison or kill him if he doesn't give them enough info.
Pairing help, please!
Kakashi walked into Harry's room to see the teen sitting up and staring at what looked like normal hospital paperwork with a blank look on his face. His gaze focused on Kakashi and the older man smiled behind his mask at the look of utter relief on the teens face.
"What's wrong?" He leant over; sure enough they were standard forms.
"How about I have no clue what any of this says?"
"You can't read?" Kakashi raised an eyebrow, that didn't make any sense considering they had first met in a school.
"I can't read this, whatever it is. Turns out I cast a translation charm without realising it which is why we can understand each other. Unfortunately I don't know any that will work on written material. We don't normally speak the same language. I think yours is similar to Japanese but I'm not positive and even if it were it still wouldn't help since I never learned it. Could you read the questions and write my answers? Please?" Kakashi stared at him, that could cause problems. Without being able to read he wouldn't be able to live alone and even going shopping would be difficult. Someone would have to teach him and the spoken version too, he couldn't rely on whatever it was he said he done for the rest of his life. Kakashi thought about it as he helped Harry with the paperwork. Maybe Iruka would be willing to help; they'd become friends through Naruto.
"All that just for one stay in hospital." Harry shook his head.
"Remind me not to get hurt or sick." Kakashi laughed.
"Come on before the staff decide to keep you after all." Harry jumped up, eager to leave.
"Don't like hospitals?"
"Spent to much time in the hospital wing at school. Madam Pomphrey put a plaque on my bed there saying it was mine." Harry smiled at the memory.
"I was going to suggest we walk but since you seem to have no clothes that may not be the best idea."
"Actually my clothes were returned and I was given money to buy some more. They put them in that closet." Kakashi grabbed the clothing and turned his back as Harry dressed. The clothing was ripped in places and still had one or two stains but at least it covered everything. He watched as Harry searched through the material and then grinned in triumph.
"Still here." He pulled something from the material and put it on the floor.
"Resize." Kakashi moved back as the trunk grew to normal proportions.
"Looks like I can give the money back." Harry dug through his trunk and pulled out some fresh clothes. Kakashi once again turned around and Harry redressed.
"Much better." And it was. Dressed in black cargo pants and a green short sleeved shirt he would blend in better than in the torn clothes of before.
"Okay I'm ready." Harry re-shrank his trunk and hid it on his body. He was curious as to where his wand had ended up but he didn't seem to be having any trouble with his wandless abilities so he wouldn't worry, yet.
"Let's go then." Harry followed Kakashi put of the hospital and onto the streets, looking around as they walked. People would occasionally greet Kakashi and he'd wave in response and Harry could feel the odd curious look but he was too busy absorbing everything he could about his new home. It was so different from anything he'd ever known.
"Here we are." Harry obediently followed into the building and up the stairs. Kakashi unlocked the door and undid the various traps while Harry watched.
"This is it. I'll show you your room and you can get settled or something. Um, I don't usually have a lot of people around." Kakashi blushed underneath his mask, even after his rush clean this morning, because he'd forgotten to do it earlier, the place was still messy.
"Reminds me of the dorms. Is there anything I can do to help out? Cook, clean, something?"
"You can cook?"
"Since I could reach the stove." Harry shrugged; being able to cook wasn't that big a deal. He followed Kakashi into an empty bedroom and sat down, testing the mattress. He smiled, not to soft but not to firm.
"I don't know any recipes for your foods though so if you have a cookbook and read the instructions? Or I could try some of the things I know if you want to try something different."
"You have yourself a job. You cook and I'll..." Kakashi stared back out into the rest of the apartment.
"Deal. Look, I know you're doing this because you were told to but, well thanks." Kakashi nodded.
"I also know you're meant to be watching me and I don't mind. But what will happen when you're on missions and stuff? I can't go with you so will someone else watch me?"
"Probably. The Hokage didn't tell me but I'm sure she has thought about it." Harry nodded and they fell silent.
"Unpack." Kakashi left him to get used to his room. Harry sighed and pulled his trunk out. He was worried about Itachi; he'd been too exhausted since waking in Konoha for them to share dreams so the Shinobi must be going crazy with worry. Harry chuckled slightly; he didn't envy Kisame at the moment. After talking with Kakashi he'd worked out that he was only missing three days of memory and that he'd been unconscious for a week in the hospital. Hopefully he would be able to talk to Itachi tonight. How would he react to knowing Harry was in Konoha? Would he come for him or ask him to leave? He wasn't sure he would want to leave but if it meant being with Itachi? But how could he? Itachi was living on the run and he would just slow them down. Maybe he could move to a town where Itachi would be able to come and go a lot easier. Then again he could keep an eye on Sasuke for Itachi and maybe do something about that seal. He had managed to remove Severus' Dark Mark after all.
Harry hung and folded his clothes, leaving the more outlandishly wizarding articles in his trunk except for his winter cloak with the school symbol and his house scarf, those were placed with his muggle clothes. He placed his framed photo of his parents and himself, a photo of Severus, Mooney, Draco, Hermione and himself and a photo of him and Sirius on the table beside the bed along with the novel he'd been reading. A few texts and writing materials were placed on the small desk along with his spell workbook. He felt tears gather as he came across a pack of owl treats. He had no idea what had happened to his loyal companion, he could only hope she was safe and well looked after. He left the money and gems in their container in the trunk and then shrank it again, placing it on a chain to rest around his neck. The chain was spelled to only come off for him but he simply hadn't had the time to attach his trunk at Hogwarts, if he hadn't spent the entirety of seventh year living out of it instead of unpacking all of his possessions would have been lost. Hopefully he'd be able to sell some of the gems, gold and silver for the local currency so that he'd have enough to live off until he worked out his new life. He definitely needed some new clothes more along the lines of what others his age here wore. Most of his muggle clothing was of the dressier look simply because he had been in an upper class area for the summer and had had a lot of business to conduct. He'd only bought what he'd needed, thinking to buy more the coming summer after graduation. Once finished he left his room in search of his babysitter. Harry mentally scolded himself, that wasn't nice. Kakashi seemed to be trying to treat him as just a flat mate so he would do the same.
Itachi froze for a second before leaning back into the embrace and then spinning around, grabbing the other in a fierce hug. He pulled back just enough to claim willing lips in a kiss.
"I thought.... Where have you been? Are you hurt?" If it were anyone else it would be babbling but Itachi did not babble. Harry relaxed in his embrace, thankful for the one familiar thing in his life.
"Merlin I've missed you." Harry breathed and Itachi smiled.
"You're alive. It's been so long I started to think you were dead." They sat beneath their tree, Harry mostly in his lap.
"Hey, this is me we're talking about. You know, 'the boy-who-just-won't-freakin-die'. As for where I am well..."
"Harry? Voldemort captured you." Itachi felt a stab of fear, what had Harry been suffering?
"What? No, Itachi I'm safe. I'm, well... I just got discharged today. From Konoha hospital."
"You were hurt? How?" Itachi stopped suddenly and thought back over what Harry had just said.
"Yep. Kakashi and his team found me in the forest nearly dead and brought me back for treatment. The Hokage has me staying with him since they're not 100% sure I can be trusted but at least they didn't lock me up."
"You're really here? Real and solid?"
"Real and solid. I met Sasuke, he reminds me a bit of you when we first met. Tsunade asked me what our relationship was so I told her how we met and about the training you gave me since she already knew. I left out magic and that we're well together. She asked me what I would do if you attacked." Itachi had tightened his grip, worried about Harry being in his home village. He would be the perfect bait for a trap and surely Tsunade realised that.
"What did you say?"
"That I wouldn't help you but I wouldn't fight you. I would however stand between you and any children. And for the record, your brother counts as a kid in my books. So no goading him into a fight, I just spent nearly a month in hospital already." Itachi nodded, it was the safest answer Harry could have given and knowing Harry completely honest.
"What happened Harry? How did you get here? Is Voldemort dead?"
"I don't know. There's a three-day gap in my memory. Tsunade thinks it's from trauma and that the memories will return when I'm ready to deal with them. Which could be a long time since a part of me is very scared of those memories."
"You'll have to remember eventually Harry. What have people been told about your presence? Do they know you know me?"
"Only Tsunade and Kakashi know about that. Anyone who asks is being told I'm a travel who was attacked on the road and found by Kakashi's team."
"Sounds like they plan for you to live there." Itachi said quietly.
"Yeah. I like it so far but...but I wish I could see you, really see you."
"Maybe you can. They won't have you watched forever. Or you could ask to move to a non-shinobi village."
"Or maybe you'll be able to clear your name and come back." Itachi smiled sadly.
"You know how likely that is. Even if I did prove my innocence of the massacre, there are still my actions since. They could give nothing but the death sentence." Harry nodded sadly.
"Could you keep an eye on him for me, as much as you can?"
"You didn't have to ask. I'll see if I can tag him with a tracking spell as well." They fell silent, content to just be together. Harry only moved when he realised he was beginning to drift into a deeper sleep.
"What do I say if they ask if we've met again?"
"You'll have to tell the truth. Tell them that I will not put you in the position to choose between us." Harry nodded and kissed Itachi before beginning to fade out.
Harry yawned as he staggered out towards the kitchen, still partially asleep. He froze and was instantly fully awake as he saw Kakashi and the Hokage waiting for him.
"Ma'am?" Harry questioned although he was pretty sure he knew why she was here.
"Did you see him?" Harry sighed.
"Yes. He knows I'm here and said to tell you that he will not put me in a position where I have to choose. I told him I will not help him but that I will not fight him either and he accepts that." Harry kept eye contact the entire time.
You believe him?" Kakashi asked.
"Yes. He has never lied to me."
"Then do you know why he did it?" There was no chance of misunderstanding the question. Harry smiled sadly.
"I swore to say nothing about that night and I will not break my word. I am sorry." She nodded.
"When Kakashi is away on missions you will be at the Academy, helping the staff as they see fit. I explained your training as childhood teachings from your family. After you were orphaned you decided to travel and have done so since. That will explain your knowledge, just avoid any Konoha specific jutsu's such as katon."
"Yes ma'am." Harry smiled, he honestly didn't mind helping out. He knew the idea behind it was that there was plenty of staff to keep an eye on him without their even realising that was what they were doing. That wouldn't stop him from enjoying the experience. Maybe that was what he could do for a living, become a teacher.
"Do you know where I could exchange these for currency?" Harry held out his hand where he'd been hiding some gems and Galleons. He fought not to laugh as their eyes widened.
"I am the head of two old families back home, with that comes responsibilities and money." Harry shrugged.
"Kakashi can show you. I better get back before Shizune sends the ANBU to find me. Have fun." With that she left.
"So do you cook breakfast or what?" Harry asked the still shocked Kakashi, smiling at the older man.
Chapter 7: Chapter 7
Disclaimer: Still don't own.
So, no one has any suggestions for other pairings? Come on! Surely you don't want only Harry and Itachi? No pairings involving other HP characters since they will no longer appear in person.
I'm actually kind of stuck on who actually committed the massacre. I'm tossing up between Orochimaru, the guys that Itachi used to work for or a new bad guy. So please vote, if new bad guy then suggest a name and his/her reasoning for the massacre.
Thanks for all the great reviews. Glad people like the reaction to Harry's money; I just had to put it in.
This one's a bit of a filler.
"Morning!" Harry groaned at Kakashi's overly cheerful wake up call and tried to burrow deeper into his covers. He was not allowed to escape back into sleep though as they were torn off him and the blinds covering the window thrown open, the window angled so precisely that the morning sunlight all but blinded him.
"Go way!" He mumbled, head now shoved under the pillow.
"You've slept over ten hours Harry! Time to get up!" He pulled the pillow from the teen's head and had to bite back a laugh as a disgruntled Harry sat up. The kid's bed hair was rather interesting, as was the sleepy glare.
"Why are you so cheerful?" Harry grumbled as he dragged himself out of bed, grabbing some clean clothes and heading for the bathroom.
"With such a wonderful cook in the house how could I not be cheerful?" Harry didn't need to be able to see Kakashi's face to know that he was smiling.
"We are getting your finances taken care of, getting you some more clothes and then joining my team for training. You get to watch."
"Joy." Harry drawled and slammed the bathroom door in Kakashi's face. The older man chuckled and then pulled out his book. Harry was definitely not a morning person but that was what made it so much fun. The teen had only been with him for one full day but he seemed to be settling in okay. Kakashi had taken a brief look around after Harry had unpacked; there was nothing out of the ordinary that he could find. Of course the books could contain anything, it wasn't like he could understand them.
Kakashi was waiting for him in the kitchen when he re-emerged, dressed in one of two casual outfits that he owned; he had worn the other yesterday and on the walk from the hospital. Today it was dark blue jeans, hiking boots and a Gryffindor red t-shirt. He had a small bag with him that Kakashi assumed had his valuables in it.
"So, is it true you're always late for training?" Harry asked as he began making breakfast.
"No, who told you that?" Harry shot him a disbelieving look.
"Naruto and Sakura. Seeing as Sasuke actually nodded I get the feeling you're lying."
"Maybe." Kakashi smiled behind his mask.
"So what time are we meant to meet them?"
"One." Harry just nodded and served the food. Mentally he subtracted three hours and then locked at the clock. It was doable, just.
"YOUR'E....on time?" Naruto had simply gone quiet; it was Sakura who had continued speaking.
"What?" Kakashi stared at them and then at Harry. The teen was obviously fighting a smile. How had he? Kakashi shook his head and Harry cracked up.
"Well, let's go. Sasuke, Naruto start sparing." Harry moved away and sat down, pulling supplies from his bag. Kakashi moved so that he could keep an eye on him and his students while still being able to read.
"I may not be able to read the language but I can tell from the cover that is not appropriate reading material when around kids." Harry commented as he began to work.
"So?" Harry just smiled and Kakashi watched him closely, tightening his grip on the beloved book.
"What are you doing?"
"Finishing my final project. It was meant to be done for graduation but wasn't due to the whole invasion so I figured I might as well finish it now."
"And the point of that is?"
"It'll be useful if it works. If it doesn't, well it wouldn't be the first time I nearly blew myself up." Kakashi's eyes widened. Just what was he working on? As if he'd read his mind Harry continued speaking.
"I was trying to combine apparation with a type of scrying. Usually you need co-ordinates or a mental image of a place to focus on. I'm trying to make it so you can apparate to a person." Harry looked up and smiled.
"Relax, I got through the riskiest bits at school under supervision, it's mainly the fine tuning left." Kakashi nodded but decided to keep a very close watch, just in case. McGonagall had been surprised when he had chosen his project but he had a very good reason behind it. Originally he was hoping to use it after the war to hopefully get to Itachi. That was still the purpose behind the spell since he had yet to figure out any other way to see him but at least he wouldn't be running the extra risk of travelling between worlds. Harry winced, his hands flying to his head as a sharp pain lanced through it.
"Harry?" He moaned slightly, fighting back the pain.
"Kakashi-sensei? Harry!" Sakura's call had the other two stopping their fight and coming closer.
"Harry can you hear me?" The teen blinked at Kakashi. When had he gotten so close?
"I'm okay." He lowered his hands and went to stand but swayed and would have fallen if Kakashi hadn't caught him.
"Take it easy. You three continue training, I'm taking Harry to the hospital."
"It's okay Kakashi, it's just a headache. I was thinking of a friend and then..." Harry met Kakashi's eye meaningfully and the Shinobi nodded slowly. He realised what Harry was saying.
"Positive, I'm fine now." Harry smiled and stood under his own power.
"Alright, back to training."
Kakashi opened the door and slipped into the room silently. He frowned as he saw Harry tossing on the bed, tangled in the sheets. He was sweating and obviously locked in a nightmare just like the previous three nights. Ever since his headache. They both knew it was Harry's repressed memories trying to come forward but that didn't make it any better. They were both losing a lot of sleep but the teen was incredibly stubborn when he wanted to be and he flat out refused to go back to the hospital. But if something didn't change soon he'd force him to go. Dealing with a cranky Harry was not his idea of fun.
"Umino Iruka?" Iruka looked at the hesitant teen in his doorway. He smiled at the boy and tried to work out who he was before coming to the conclusion that he had never seen him before.
"Can I help you?" He accepted the note and then smiled.
"So you're the Harry Naruto won't stop talking about. It's nice to finally meet you."
"You too sir, Naruto speaks highly of you." Harry answered politely. Iruka had known the teen would be coming to help today, he'd just plain forgotten about it.
"You have some ninja training correct?" Harry nodded.
"But you were never formally schooled?"
"No sir, my parents taught me."
"Well why don't you listen in on the lecture. We'll be doing practical work later and I could do with an extra pair of eyes to watch them."
"Sure." Harry sat off to the side and was soon engrossed in the lesson. Because of time restraints Itachi had focused far more on the practical side of his training so a lot of it was new to him.
"So you're staying with Kakashi? Iruka asked as they watched the children practice.
"Call me Iruka. He hasn't driven you insane yet?" Harry laughed.
"No, not yet. Though you should have seen the looks on his teams faces when he showed up on time last week." Iruka stared at him on shock.
"How?" Harry just smiled.
"My secret. It's not that bad actually. We made a deal, I cook and he cleans. This way we avoid food poisoning and can actually see the floor now. He's a nice guy really."
"Yeah. He actually asked me about helping you with something." Iruka watched as Harry blushed slightly.
"I...I can't read your language." Harry said quietly.
"It's not the same as back home." He pulled out one of his books to prove his point.
"I need to learn or I'm going to be stuck relying on other people to tell me what things say and I can't live like that." Iruka nodded in understanding.
"Are you doing anything this evening?"
"Then we can have our first lesson." Harry smiled at him.
"It's no problem."
Chapter 8: Chapter 8
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
Looks like there will be KakaIru. Most reviewers asked for it and I was half thinking about it myself so yeah. Had some interesting suggestions for others and I am still thinking them over.
As for the real perpetrator of the massacre I have had some helpful things pointed out to me.
So, thank you to all you wonderful reviewers.
Here's what a lot of you have been waiting for.
Kakashi was up and halfway into Harry's room when the teen slammed into him before bolting into the bathroom. Harry's scream had probably woken their neighbours but at the moment he was more concerned with his flatmate. Sure the boy had been having nightmares nearly every night but he had never screamed like that before. Kakashi grabbed a glass of water from the kitchen before joining him in the bathroom. He knelt beside Harry and awkwardly rubbed his back as the teen continued to heave. When he was finished Kakashi handed him the glass and wet a cloth for is face. The whole time Harry remained silent, worrying the older man.
"I remember." Harry whispered, shivering slightly and staring off into space.
He looked out at the grounds from the room's single window. He could see the Ministry forces as they continued to work on the wards. They'd fall soon. He looked over at the rooms other occupant, the blond was still asleep and Harry envied him that. He had given up trying to sleep days ago, or was it weeks? All he ever saw was Tom. The visions were forced on him whenever he tried to sleep. All he wanted was to see Itachi, to hear that everything was going to be all right. But he hadn't seen him since that day in the corridor and he was honest enough to admit, at least to himself, that he would probably never see him again. Harry knew what his chances were, even with Itachi's training he was still only seventeen and he was facing an enemy more powerful than any other who had at least fifty years experience on him. He stiffened slightly as he felt something pass through him and then looked into suddenly alert grey eyes. The two teens were on their feet and ready to move in seconds, the wards had fallen. They dashed through the corridors, using their knowledge of the various passageways to avoid the enemy. They hoped to get behind them and help the attacking forces by taking out some of the rear defenders. Hopefully the various traps they'd laid would take out more of the Death Eaters than their allies. Harry pulled his wand as the sounds of fighting began to reach them. Beside him he felt more than saw Draco do the same. It wasn't long before they joined the fight, throwing themselves into it. Harry dodged automatically as a spell flashed past him, hitting the Death Eater he'd been fighting and putting the man out of the fight. Eventually he managed to fight his way to Remus' side. The werewolf smiled at him for a second before they went back to back, firing off curses as quick as they could. Harry was saving his few jutsu's for the fight with Tom.
Harry collapsed, exhausted onto the ground, eagerly accepting the flask Remus handed him.
"I'm glad you two are okay. When Hermione showed up alone..."
"Someone had to keep the idiots occupied until the ret of you could get here. It hasn't been the most enjoyable month but we managed." Harry leant tiredly against his godfather, just glad to be with him again.
"Get some sleep cub, I'll watch over you."
"Can't, he won't let me." Harry muttered tiredly. Remus pulled him into a hug.
"It's okay cub, it'll be over soon." Remus murmured, holding him tightly.
Harry forced his face to remain blank as he watched Remus collapse lifeless to the floor, Wormtail's silver hand still halfway through his chest. Without a thought Harry's hands flashed through the seals of his most recently learnt jutsu.
"Katon: Goukakyuu no Jutsu." He watched as Wormtail died and then turned back to the fight, ignoring the pain in his heart. He hadn't wanted to use any jutsu's yet but his body had reacted because of Itachi's training. At least the traitor was finally dead, he would mourn Moony later; either that or he'd be joining him. Harry pushed those thoughts away as he dodged a killing curse, sending one of his own back. His use of a jutsu had brought an advantage, those Death Eaters close enough to see what he'd done had been shocked into stillness for a few precious seconds, enough that most had fallen to a barrage of curses.
Harry dodged and then jumped, using chakra to run up the wall and out of range, trying to get his breath back. It had been three days of near non-stop fighting since the wards had fallen, two days since Moony's death. Now he was finally facing his enemy. Tom had blocked them from the rest of the fighters and Harry wasn't about to complain. It would be easier to fight without worrying about being hit from behind. Both sides had suffered heavy losses, the most painful the many students who had been killed while the Ministry forces had been trying to get in, despite Harry and Draco's efforts to distract the Death Eaters. He smiled slightly as he saw Hermione and Draco fighting back to back to protect a group of first years that looked a bit the worse for wear but otherwise unharmed.
"I do not know how you are doing that Potter but it will not save you." Tom hissed.
"All it has to do is buy me time Tom."
"Do not call e that! I am Lord Voldemort!"
"No, you're just a pathetic little half-blood who can't accept what he is. Because of that you've torn about this world and tried to destroy another. How many people have you killed Tom? How many innocents whose only crime was that they weren't magical?"
"Innocents? They are not innocent!"
"What? Because your father abandoned you? Because you were treated badly at the orphanage? Grow up Tom; you're not the only one who had a bad childhood. There are tons of people out there who had worse. You don't see them trying to take over the world!" Well his plan was definitely working, Tom was getting madder by the minute. Harry stumbled slightly as the wall he was standing on shook, they had to end this soon, the castle had taken too much damage. He could feel Hogwarts spirit screaming in pain as spell after spell hit her walls. Sometimes he hated being so in tune with magic. With a thought he summoned Gryffindors sword and dropped from the wall to land silently behind his nemesis. Only incredible reflexes allowed the older wizard to dodge what would have been a killing blow. He blocked a curse wit the blade and then attacked. He had to immobilise Tom and fast. He winced as part of the ceiling collapsed, taking out a few wizards but he didn't have time to worry about whose side they'd been on.
Harry forced himself back to his feet, ignoring the blood trickling from his wounds and instead staring in shock at the body in front of him. Tom's shield had dropped ten minutes ago, making their fight more difficult as they now had to dodge spells thrown by multiple attackers. Lucius Malfoy had taken advantage of that fact and only Draco's throwing himself in front of Harry had saved the other wizard. Harry shook off his shock and shoved his rage and grief deep down, forcing himself to remain calm and focused. He was vaguely aware of Hermione in the background and could remember hearing her scream when Draco had fallen but none of that was important right now. He stared at Lucius and the older wizard smirked, uncaring that he'd jus killed his only child. Harry whispered a little known curse that he'd found in the black library, Malfoy Snr, would not be leaving alive. With that knowledge secure in his mind he turned back to his battle.
"What, no tears for the bravely fallen friend?" Tom taunted and Harry smiled grimly.
"Battle is no time for tears Tom." With that they were once again going all out. Half an hour later Harry smiled and his hands flashed through the same seals he'd used two days ago. Tom was down, the back of his legs slashed by a lucky blow from Harry's sword.
"Goodbye Tom. Katon: Goukakyuu no Jutsu." Harry watched impassively as the so-called Dark Lord burned. As Tom Riddle's spirit finally left the mortal plane every living Death Eater dropped, dead before they hit the ground. There were a few shocked looks when Severus was not among them, no one outside their tight knit group had known about Harry removing is Mark. Shouts of joy went up only to turn to screams of terror as the castle lost her fight and began to fully collapse. Although nearly dead on his feet from exhaustion Harry reached for his magic and that of the castle, weaving them together to strengthen the building for just a little longer.
"Everyone run! The castle won't last long." There was no argument as people began levitating the wounded and running for the doors. Only two paused as they noticed Harry hadn't moved.
"Harry run!" He smiled sadly.
"I can't Mione, I'm the only thing holding this castle up. Go!"
"No!" She screamed, tears flowing freely.
"I won't lose you too!"
"Mione." Harry whispered sadly. Severus met his eyes and nodded, giving the teen a small sad yet proud smile. He stunned the young witch and then took off as fast as he could. Harry closed his eyes, still smiling sadly as he waited for the last survivors to leave. As he felt his two friends leave he released his hold on the magic and simply stood there calmly as pieces of his beloved home began to rain down around him. He looked up at a loud crack and watched as a large piece of the ceiling plummeted towards him.
"Goodbye." He whispered sadly and closed his eyes, waiting for death. Instead he felt fiery warmth encircle him and then pain like nothing he'd ever felt before. Thankfully he passed out after mere seconds.
Kakashi looked down at the teen, knowing there wasn't much he could do for him. He would talk when he was ready, hopefully. To his utter shock he found himself almost wishing for Harry to dream of Itachi. That was something he'd never thought he'd do but the teen needed comforting and for some reason the Uchiha seemed to genuinely care about him.
"Come on, let's get you back to bed." Harry didn't protest but he didn't help either, leading to Kakashi carrying him back to his room. He didn't know what had happened but it must have been bad. He felt sorry for the boy, thrust into a strange world with his only long-term friend being an enemy of his new ones after having been in what must have been a cataclysmic battle. The teen acted old for his age but he was still only a boy, only a few years older than his team. Harry just continued to stare blankly ahead, lost in his memories.
"Call me if you need me." With that Kakashi went back to his room but he didn't sleep for the rest of the night.
"He remembers." Tsunade looked up at Kakashi.
"It may have been better if he didn't."
"Why?" She asked.
"Because all he has done since is stare at the wall or whatever else is in front of him. It's been two days now and there's no change."
"Is he sleeping at all?"
"Give him another two days, if there's still no change bring him to the hospital. Perhaps you should have your team visit. They may be able to snap him out of it."
"Yes Hokage." He bowed and left. Tsunade downed her drink. Whatever had happened to bring the by to their world must have been bad to cause such a reaction. She only hoped that Harry didn't react to Sasuke as if he were Itachi, that would complicate things even further.
"Kakashi-sensei, you're early?" Sakura asked in surprise.
"Where's Harry? Isn't he watching today?" Naruto asked, obviously disappointed.
"I need to talk to you three about Harry." Kakashi said carefully.
"What is it? Is he hurt?"
"In a way. A few days ago Harry remembered what happened to him."
"That's good isn't it?" Sakura asked.
"Yes, but the memories appear to have been too traumatic. Harry has retreated into his own mind. For the last two days there has been no reaction from him." Even Sasuke seemed worried, not that his expression showed it.
"The Hokage suggested the three of you visit him so that is what we will be doing today. Would you do that?"
"We have to help Harry!" Naruto cried. Sakura nodded and Sasuke just shrugged as if to say he had nothing better to do.
"What should we do?" Sakura asked as they walked towards Kakashi's apartment.
"Just act normal, talk to him. Try to get him to respond." The three teens nodded. Before they knew it they were at the apartment.
"Harry's room is the second door on the right." Kakashi watched them walk down the hall, hoping this would work. He'd grown to honestly like Harry and didn't want to see him hospitalised for this. The odds of him ever coming out again weren't good. He didn't want to think about what would happen when Itachi found out.
"Hey Harry!" Naruto called out as they entered the room. He hesitated when he saw the older teen just lying on the bed, staring blankly at the wall. Sasuke pushed him further into the room so that he and Sakura could get in as well. They'd never been in Harry's room before; then again they hadn't been in the apartment before either. It was a nice room and Kakashi had obviously made the effort to brighten it up for Harry since the blinds and window were open and some fresh flowers were on the bedside table, placed nicely between photos. It was obvious Kakashi had been caring for him, his pyjamas were fresh and his hair had been combed. Naruto hesitated before bouncing onto the bed beside Harry but the teen still didn't react.
"Kakashi-sensei said you were sad so he sent us to cheer you up. Harry? Come on talk to us, please?" Naruto was scared, though he wouldn't admit it. Harry was his friend and he didn't like seeing him like this. Sure, he was used to seeing his friends injured but not like this.
"He was actually early to our meeting today Harry. You must be rubbing off on him." Naruto looked to the others for help.
"I saw Iruka-sensei yesterday, he asked about you." Sakura said but there was still no reaction. Sasuke moved so that he was standing in front of Harry.
"Wake up Harry, please." The last was said softly enough that his teammates didn't hear him. Despite his efforts he liked the older teen. He was usually so cheerful but Sasuke had seen the old pain and grief in his eyes. Harry had seen some painful things but had been able to move past them and continue with his life, something he almost envied him for. Of course he doubted it was as bad as what he'd seen. The three stayed for several hours, just talking about anything and everything but there was no response. Sakura was the last to leave. She reached out and touched Harry's hand softly.
"Please come back Harry, people need you." She went to leave but paused as she heard something.
"Itachi." She froze at the sound of Sasuke's brother's name coming from the still figure on the bed.
"Harry?" She moved back to the bed and was surprised to see his eyes closed in sleep. Smiling slightly she left the room, but she couldn't forget what she'd heard. Maybe she had heard wrong? After all the whisper had been barely audible, he could have said anything. Kakashi watched her as she left the room.
"He's asleep sensei." Kakashi's visible eye widened.
"Asleep?" She nodded.
"He said something just before that. It was a whisper so I barely noticed it. Kakashi-sensei, it sounded like he said Itachi." He smiled behind his mask, perhaps the teen would dream tonight. At least Sasuke and Naruto had already left.
"I doubt that was what he said Sakura but at least he said something and is asleep. Perhaps he will have improved when he wakes up. I'll let you all know."
"Yes sensei. Goodnight."
Itachi looked around the glade but he couldn't see Harry anywhere.
"Harry?" He started wandering around but froze as he heard something.
"Harry?" He called again and then he heard the sound again. It was a whimper. Following it he broke into a run as he saw the figure laying on the grass, curled up in a ball. His heart was pounding in fear; please don't let them have done something to Harry because of me, he thought as he ran. He dropped to his knees and reached out to his friend. The teen screamed and scrabbled away.
"Harry, please. It's me, Itachi." He reached out again and grabbed Harry even as he tried to move away. He held him gently as he fought to get away.
"Harry, shhh, it's okay. It's just me, you're safe." He relaxed as Harry began to still in his arms and relax. He kissed the top of his head softly, just glad to see him again. He had been getting ready to sneak into Konoha if Harry hadn't shown up soon. He just kept talking to him as Harry slowly calmed down.
"Itachi?" He smiled softly and hugged Harry tighter.
"I'm here." Harry twisted in his arms and hugged him back. Itachi felt moisture begin to soak into his shirt and realised Harry was crying.
"What happened? Harry did they do something to you?" He felt Harry shake his head against his chest and relaxed slightly.
"Harry please tell me."
"I remember." Itachi froze and then gently raised Harry's head. He bent his head down and kissed him gently.
"The rat killed Moony, he shoved that stupid silver hand right into his chest. He screamed so loudly." Harry sobbed and Itachi pulled him into his chest again. He knew how much the werewolf had meant to him.
"I killed him, didn't give him the chance to do anything. I used katon on him and he burned. So many people died. I killed..." Itachi let him take his time. He hated the fact that Harry had been forced to kill like that but there hadn't been any other choice.
"Draco took a killing curse for me from his own father while I was fighting Tom. I killed Lucius and went back to fighting Tom. I...I acted like it didn't matter; like I didn't care that one of my best friends had just died. I had to, couldn't let him use it against me but it hurts so much!" Itachi could do nothing but hold him, letting him know he was there for him, no matter what.
"I killed him, I fulfilled that stupid prophecy. Cut his legs so he couldn't move and then did the same thing I did to the rat. He burned and all the death eaters died, they just fell down, dead. But the castle had taken too much damage. I managed to reinforce it with my magic, long enough for the others. Severus had to stun Mione to get her to leave; she refused to leave me behind. But I couldn't leave or everyone would of died. When they were out I just let go. There was a piece of the roof falling straight at me, it got hot and it hurt, so much. I should be dead, why aren't I dead?"
"Don't say that Harry. You can't die. I need you. I...I love you." Harry jerked back, staring at Itachi with wide, panicked eyes.
"I love you Harry. If you had died I don't know what I would do."
"You love me?" Harry was calming down, staring at Itachi with the most beautiful look of wonder that the older man had ever seen.
"Yes, I love you." Itachi fell back as Harry threw himself onto him, hugging him tightly.
"Love you too." Itachi smiled at the quiet declaration.
"Don't leave me." Itachi hugged him back just as tightly.
"Never by choice." He promised. He couldn't promise Harry he'd never leave him; he was a hunted criminal after all. One day his luck would run out.
"Grieve for then Harry, grieve and move on. Don't let them take you from me, from anyone who cares about you. You did what you had to do; the Death Eaters had long made their choice. Don't let guilt destroy you." Itachi whispered as he held the teen close. He smiled softly as he saw Harry had fallen asleep in his arms.
"Sleep well love." He moved them slightly, getting comfortable before drifting further into sleep himself.
Kakashi stood in the doorway to the kitchen in shock, surely he was seeing things?
"Morning. Eggs good?"
"Harry?" Kakashi asked to make sure he wasn't seeing things. The teen had been pretty much catatonic and now he was cooking breakfast?
"I'm okay Kakashi. Not better but I'll get there." Harry gave him a small but genuine smile.
"Good dreams?" Harry's smile widened.
"Yeah. So, eggs?"
"Sounds good." Kakashi sat down and they ate breakfast together in silence, but it was comfortable. Next time he saw Itachi he would have to thank him, before killing or capturing him.
"Feel up to joining us this morning?" He asked as he cleaned the dishes.
"Sure. Let me grab a shower and I'll be ready."
"No rush, we have plenty of time." Kakashi pulled his book out only to be left blinking in shock as it disappeared. He looked up to see Harry holding it as if it were poisonous. How?
"You get this back if we are on time to meet them. Otherwise this will remain safely hidden." Harry stated and disappeared into his room. Kakashi smiled behind his mask; yep Harry was on the mend.
"HARRY!" Two shouts were heard and then the poor teen was on the ground, a hyperactive blond on top of him.
"Naruto please get up, I can't breathe." Harry wheezed out. The blond pulled back sheepishly.
"You're okay now?" Harry smiled at Naruto.
"I'm okay." He ruffled the blond hair as he got up. He wasn't incredibly tall for his age but he was still considerably taller than the younger teen.
"Kakashi said you guys came to see me, thanks."
"Well, now that Harry's fine let's get back to training. Sasuke, you and Sakura please. Harry, why don't we have a spar? See what you know." The four stared at Kakashi in shock.
"How about no. I'm not suicidal."
"Kakashi-sensei you can't be serious! You could kill or hurt him!" Sakura stood up for the young wizard.
"I wouldn't go all out. He does have some training."
"Yeah but...Fine. But I end up in hospital again and you're cooking your own meals, permanently." Harry threatened. He slipped out of the jacket he'd been wearing to free up his movements. It may be summer but the mornings were still a little chilly sometimes.
"Naruto give him your weapons." The teen removed his kunai and shuriken holsters and tossed them to Harry. Harry put them on, showing he had training in that at least.
"We'll stick to taijutsu since you don't know many jutsu's. Just do your best." Harry nodded and slid into a defensive stance. They stared at each other, neither moving and Kakashi was impressed, most beginners would have rushed to attack by now. Then again an Uchiha had trained him. Deciding to really get the fight started he attacked. To his surprise Harry dodged easily, the teen was certainly fast. Then again he would probably have to be to survive Itachi's training. Knowing the missing-nin part of that training had probably included dodging attacks from various thrown weapons. Kakashi kept on the offensive and Harry continued to dodge. Seeing that he upped his speed. Harry shot him an annoyed look as a few of his hits began landing, Kakashi just grinned. He was surprised to see that so far Harry was at genin level, not quite up to some of the current ones level but still good. Itachi had obviously focused on this part of his training almost to the exclusion of all others. Kakashi suddenly found himself on the ground and quickly got to his feet. His thoughts had obviously wandered a little too much and Harry had managed to land a blow. The teen sent him a look.
"I know I'm not that good but you could do me the curtesy of actually paying attention to what we're doing."
"Actually you are good considering how much formal training you have. Your taijutsu is at genin level." Harry looked surprised at that and Kakashi took the opportunity to attack. Harry snapped out of his daze instantly and dodged the kick but he got hit by Kakashi's fist, falling backwards. He twisted mid fall and managed to turn it into a roll. Kakashi fell back as he saw Harry wince and his hand go towards his ribs. Kakashi wasn't aiming to hurt him, he knew Harry's threat was serious plus the teen had been out of it for a few days. To his surprise Harry straightened and smiled at him, motioning for him to continue.
Harry smiled at the look of surprise. That hit had hurt but all he'd done was force some magic into his ribs and now they were healed. It was an interesting ability he had discovered as a child and had hidden from everyone except Severus, Draco and Itachi. It was what had enabled him to survive his years at the Dursley's and the various fights with Tom and his followers. He watched as Kakashi pulled a kunai and did the same, once again waiting for the other man to come to him. He knew he was going to lose, there was no way he was a match for a jounin, especially one with Kakashi's reputation but he was determined to do his best and to learn while doing it. That was the problem with having access to only one trainer. Harry and Itachi had learnt how to read each other's moves while now Harry had no idea what his opponent would do next. Add to that the fact that he was beginning to tire and he knew the match wouldn't last much longer.
"You okay Harry?" Naruto called. A hand was raised and waved in his general direction in answer. Harry had been right, the match had only lasted another five minutes and now the young wizard was lying in the grass, five feet from where he'd been only a few seconds before. He tried to sit up and winced, once again pushing magic into his injuries and healing them nearly instantly. He rolled to his feet and walked back to the group. He could feel Kakashi's surprise, the man obviously knew how hard he'd hit Harry and couldn't figure out how he was moving without pain.
"I'm fine Naruto. Just a bit tired. That was fun Kakashi, not a suicidal as I thought it would be." Harry grinned at the confused man and gave him a look that said he'd tell him later. Kakashi nodded.
"Sakura, aren't you and Sasuke meant to be sparring?" Kakashi asked the teen and she blushed.
"I think we distracted them." Harry commented as he went to where he usually sat to watch or read. Naruto joined him and they watched the other two genin fight.
"You did great Harry." Naruto grinned at him and Harry grinned back.
"Thanks." He leant back against the tree, he was honestly tired.
"Maybe you could ask to finish your training? I bet you'd make a great ninja." Harry looked at Naruto.
"Thanks but...there's some stuff you don't Naruto. Reasons why that wouldn't work." Harry smiled at the younger teen and then closed his eyes, working through his occulmency exercises to try and sort his thoughts and emotions out. Having a fun spar now and then was one thing; training to fight again was another. If it came down to it Harry knew he could kill again to defend an innocent or someone he cared about but he couldn't do it just because he was ordered too. He could feel Kakashi watching him but ignored him, falling into a light meditative trance. This was the first time he'd gone this far since arriving in Itachi's world and what he found made him gasp and break his trance.
"Harry? What is it? Are you hurt?" Harry opened his eyes to see Naruto staring at him in concern and that Kakashi had moved closer.
"It's nothing Naruto, I'm fine." He gave the other teen an honest smile and he nodded, turning back to watching his teammates.
"Harry?" Kakashi asked softly.
"It's nothing, just got a surprise that's all." From Kakashi's look he knew the older man didn't fully believe him and he sighed.
"Later, please?" Kakashi looked at for a few seconds before nodding. Harry once again let his thoughts drift, no wonder he liked this world so much. Without witches and wizards to pull on it the magic here was wild, untamed, and infinitely more vast and powerful than back home. He was going to have to be very careful trying any spells that pulled magic from the environment until he got used to it or else they could backfire rather painfully or end up doing what he wanted, just to a far greater degree.
Harry put the plates on the table and took his usual seat. There was pressure to the silence tonight and he knew Kakashi wanted answers.
"I have a rather unique ability, at least that was what I was told. I doubt I'd still be alive if it weren't for said ability. I can channel raw magic to my wounds and use it to heal them. I did it instinctively as a child and it wasn't until I was fifteen that I finally worked out why I healed so quickly. After that I trained myself to do it at a conscious level so that wounds would heal almost instantaneously. Really comes in handy when you have my luck for trouble. As for the other thing, that was the first time I've gone so far in my occulmency exercises since arriving, I wasn't expecting what I found. Itachi thought your world had no magic, boy was he ever wrong. Without people like me it's wild and so much more powerful than what it was back home. If I tried a spell that uses magic from the environment I don't want to think about what it might do. I could do a lot of damage without meaning too."
"What exactly are people like you? You've never said and I couldn't exactly ask Itachi."
"I'm a Wizard, a half-blood if you want to get technical. There are two separate societies back home, the magical and the muggle. A Wizard or Witch is someone with an innate ability to do magic, both of my parents could but my mother's family couldn't. It's not the same as chakra, Itachi and I tested that theory, and he doesn't have a magical bone in his body. You can do so many things with magic, some good, some bad. It's funny, I was portrayed as the symbol of the light and yet technically I'd be classed as a Dark Wizard these days. A lot of my people confused Dark with evil and that caused a lot of problems." Harry got a distant look and Kakashi decided to bring him back.
"Can you show me something?" Harry nodded and picked up the chopsticks he'd been using. He focused his magic and then handed the small rabbit over. Kakashi studied it closely. He hadn't felt any chakra being used so he had to assume it was magic.
"That is a real rabbit, surprised that worked that well. Transfiguration isn't my best subject area." Harry shrugged.
"What is your best?" He handed the rabbit back and Harry reversed the spell.
"Defence Against the Dark Arts and surprisingly the Dark Arts themselves, though I avoid using them as much as possible. Dark Magic is addictive if you're not careful. My whole life I was being trained for war, even if I didn't realise it at first. The light wanted me as their weapon and I went along with it to a certain extent."
"Against another Wizard, what would you rank? Use our ranking system." He could see Harry thinking about it.
"Got anything above kage?" Kakashi's jaw dropped, making him very thankful for his mask. The kid was as powerful as Tsunade or Orochimaru?
"They say I'm the most powerful Wizard since Merlin himself, maybe even more powerful. There are those who'd kill to have my power and I'd give it up in a second to have one minute with my family. I can't use it all yet, not even half of it. I'll have to wait till....... Oh shit." Harry paled.
"My majority, it's when the rest of my magic will be, released for lack of a better word."
"And that's a problem why?"
"Because it has to be done in a heavily warded room or the results to my surroundings could be catastrophic. We had a room ready at Severus' family home but that isn't exactly an option anymore. Add to that the more wild magic here and we have a major problem."
"When is your majority?" Harry turned to look at the calendar.
"We need to see the Hokage." Kakashi stated and Harry nodded.
Chapter 9: Chapter 9
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
See, I didn't kill everyone off, just Moony and Draco plus all the DE's and obviously some unnamed good guys.
Someone asked about the magic and why they don't have wizards or something similar. The reason is that both worlds have magic and chakra but they each discovered a different one. Hence Harry's ability to use chakra once shown how. There would be people with magical potential in Naruto's world but they do not know how to tap it. At least, that's my reasoning.
As for how powerful Harry is, I made his majority 18 because I needed him to have to truly fight to beat Tom, couldn't make it easy or he wouldn't have been needing a way out of a deadly situation. After he is 18 he will have power equivalent to the three sannins (spelling? I've seen it with an a or an e), maybe slightly more but nowhere near say the Kyuubi's before it was sealed.
There was also a question about Kakashi and Harry's relationship. I'm aiming at a brotherly relationship between them.
Harry paced the room out of agitation. He'd finally told Tsunade and Kakashi everything and the two were in the other room discussing it. He hated to admit it but he was scared about what would happen now. Would she decide he was too dangerous and kick him out or worse? He didn't want to leave. In the month since he'd woken in the hospital he'd found a home in Konoha. He couldn't bare being forced from another home. He didn't want to leave Kakashi, Iruka, Sasuke, Naruto or Sakura. They were all special to him in their own ways. The younger three were becoming younger siblings while Iruka was a mentor and friend. He wasn't sure about Kakashi but they seemed to be settling into almost a sibling/friend relationship. He's never had an older brother but Kakashi did a good job of acting the annoying part that went with the job. He could practically feel the amusement coming from the two ANBU guards as he continued to pace. They thought he was just a civilian traveller that had been found in the forest. He knew they'd be a lot more alert and cautious if they knew who and what he really was.
"Harry, come back in." He took a deep breath and opened the door, slipping into the Hokage's office. He took the indicated seat and forced himself to relax.
"I understand why you didn't tell us everything at first so I'm not mad about that. I can also understand your reasoning for not wanting to complete your Shinobi training, however I do believe it would be beneficial for you to do so. I could arrange a private teacher so you wouldn't have to go to the Academy with children far younger than you and there are genins older than you. Even if you chose to never advance further than genin at least your training would be more well rounded than it currently is. As for your Majority we will have to work quickly to prepare. How bad do you think it could be?"
"Bad. The magic here is wilder and there is a lot more of it. I don't know how it will react to mine once the blocks are gone. From what I was told then we're looking at a lot of damage. The warded room isn't just to protect the things around me though; it is also to protect me as the magic is released. The idea is to slow the process enough that it doesn't well, kill me painfully. I have some of the spells and stuff in my workbook since we had to change them slightly for me but I don't know if they'll be enough. It would be safer if this was done far from any towns or people, just in case." Tsunade nodded.
"How long will it take to prepare the area as much as possible?"
"The sooner I can start the better."
"Very well. Pack what you'll need. Kakashi you'll go with him as will your team." She raised a hand as Harry went to protest.
"Sakura is my apprentice, you may need her skills as a medic after this. It is too dangerous for you to travel alone. When the time comes they will leave to what you think is a safe distance but until then they will stay with you. If things go badly you will need them to get you back here. Understood?" Harry swallowed and nodded.
"Good. Kakashi inform your team they have an A-ranked mission."
"A-ranked?" Harry asked.
"If they can't get far enough before it begins." Harry nodded and the two left the office. Tsunade watched them go, still thinking over what Harry had told her. He would make a good addition to the village and she was beginning to think he could really be trusted but she still didn't like his ties to Itachi. She had the feeling there was more to it than Harry was saying and that worried her.
The three genins were waiting at the gates for the sensei. He'd shown up, told them to pack for a mission, given them the time and then vanished. None of them liked not knowing what the mission was, or even its rank. They watched as Kakashi walked into view with Harry by his side.
"Harry! You came to see us off!" Naruto yelled, hugging the older teen.
"No, I'm coming with you." Harry gently removed Naruto before he lost the ability to breath.
"What? Isn't that dangerous?" Sakura asked and Harry winced.
"Come on, we need to go." Kakashi ushered them out of the gates.
"Can you run in the trees?" Harry nodded and followed them up into the branches. He wasn't quite as good as them but he still managed to keep up.
"What is the mission Kakashi-sensei?" Sakura asked as they left Konoha behind.
"Do you want to tell them?" Kakashi asked and Harry shook his head. The three genin exchanged looks.
"Right, we are to escort Harry to the remotest area we can find, help him set up and then retreat to the minimum distance he gives us. After that we are to wait for at least six hours before going back for him. At this point your skills as a medic will most likely be needed Sakura." The three teens stared at their two older companions in confusion.
"This is an A-ranked mission." Kakashi added almost as an after thought.
"I don't understand." Naruto was looking between the two as they ran through the trees. Harry looked at Kakashi before moving so that he was running beside Naruto.
"I...have abilities, different to yours. When I hit eighteen they will be fully unlocked. We were prepared for it back home but circumstances have made my being there for this impossible. There wasn't enough time to prepare a room in Konoha and ensure there would be no risk to the village. That's why we are coming out here. When the time comes you have to stay away until Kakashi says its safe, no matter what you see or hear."
"Will it hurt?" Naruto asked, concerned for his friend.
"A lot. I...if worse comes to worse it could kill me." Harry looked away from the pained look on Naruto's face.
"Then why are you doing this!?"
"This isn't something I have a say in Naruto. It will happen wether I want it to or not. All I can do is try to make sure no one else gets hurt." Harry shrugged slightly.
"This is what I am, I can't change that." They had stopped running and Harry pulled Naruto into a hug.
"I don't want you to die!" Harry smiled sadly at the blond; he was still so innocent in many ways despite his training and life.
"I know and I am going to do everything I can to make sure that doesn't happen. Sakura's here to help me afterwards. There's nothing else that can be done." Harry started moving again; fully aware of the way the others were watching him as they travelled.
Harry clung to Itachi as they lay beneath their tree. The older man was hiding his fear well but inside he was a mess. In three days he could lose his love permanently. Harry had told him the general direction they'd had been heading in and he figured that if he ran flat out he could catch up before it was time for Harry to be left but that would only lead to a fight. Unless...
"Harry ask to talk to Kakashi alone, see if he's willing to look the other way if I show up." Harry sat up and stared at Itachi as if he'd lost his mind.
"Are you crazy? He'd have to try to capture you, or worse! And what if Sasuke saw you?"
"Harry you could die! I just want." Itachi took a deep breath.
"I want the chance to hold you for real even if its just once. Kakashi knows this could kill you, he may agree to give us this."
"He doesn't know about us! They think we're just friends!"
"Even then, don't we deserve to see each other once?"
"You're not going to give up on this are you?" Harry grumbled and Itachi smiled down at him fondly.
"No. Either way I'm coming. I don't want to find out just because I never dream like this again. I can mask my presence from them."
"Just stay away while it's happening. I don't want you to get hurt."
"I promise." Itachi kissed him gently but Harry pulled him closer, deepening the kiss desperately. Itachi lay back, pulling Harry down on top of him as they continued to kiss and cuddle, trying to make as many happy memories just in case this was all Itachi would soon have.
"Love you." Itachi smiled at the quiet declaration.
"Love you too." He whispered back words he'd never thought he'd be able to say to someone.
Kakashi kept an eye on Harry as they backed up the camp and got ready for the days travel. He had the feeling Harry had dreamed last night and whatever had happened between him and Itachi had him on edge. He didn't like the way the teen kept glancing his way while chewing his lip, an obvious sign of nervousness. Harry usually had better control of his emotions than that. He wasn't surprised when Harry approached him and asked to talk to him alone. He sent the other three on ahead and waited for Harry to talk.
"I know there's no way you can say yes, I'm only asking because Itachi was adamant and he is great at distracting me and you really don't need to hear that..." Kakashi couldn't help a flash of amusement as Harry babbled nervously.
"Itachi's coming. He wants to know if you'd be willing to look the other way for a bit. I...the chances of my surviving this aren't good. We've never even seen each other for real, you know?" Harry looked away but not before Kakashi noticed the sparkle of unshed tears.
"Harry, how close are the two of you. Honestly." Harry's head snapped back around and he opened and closed his mouth a few times before suddenly finding the ground fascinating.
"I love him and he loves me." Harry answered softly. Kakashi sighed, that complicated matters.
"Why didn't you tell the Hokage or me earlier?" Harry shrugged.
"He is a missing-nin Harry, a criminal. I can't ignore his presence." The teen nodded sadly. Kakashi looked at him and came to a decision that if any one ever learned of could get him in a lot of trouble.
"However, if I don't know he's there then I have nothing to report and no reason to act, do I?" Harry's head snapped up and he stared at Kakashi in shocked hope.
"He can not be seen Harry and if he tries anything..."
"He won't. I...thank you Kakashi." Harry hugged the older man to his surprise.
"We better get moving before the brats get worried." Harry nodded and they were off. If Harry couldn't stop grinning the entire day no one said anything.
Harry stretched; glad to finally be able to stand after having been bending over for so long. There was a reason he hadn't taken Ancient Runes, they were interesting but using them was a pain, literally. At least he was finally done. The clearing was as good as it was going to get, all that was left was for him to activate the wards once he was inside the circle but that wouldn't happen until tomorrow night. He packed his supplies up carefully and got ready to head back to the temporary camp but froze as he sensed he was no longer alone. It was too risky to try a spell with all the wards he'd placed so his hand slipped down to the kunai holster Kakashi had convinced him to wear for the trip.
"Would you really use that on me?" Harry spun, bag falling from his hand as he stared into the trees wildly. Was it?
"Itachi?" He called hesitantly and tensed as a figure dropped to the ground. He relaxed as the figures face was revealed and then he was running across the grass. Itachi caught him easily, holding him tightly for several long minutes before pulling back. They studied each other silently, noting the few differences from how they appeared in their dreams.
"This is real right? I didn't fall asleep without noticing?" Itachi smiled down at him.
"I'm really here Harry. Kisame is nearby keeping an eye on Kakashi and the kids to make sure we're not caught." Harry nodded, stepping back into his arms.
"I've wanted this for so long." Harry whispered before stretching up to kiss him.
"They know not to expect me back till morning. How long can you stay?"
"As long as you want. We'll be as close as we can until this is all over." Harry nodded before taking Itachi's hand and pulling him to the edge of the trees farthest from the camp. They settled against the base of a tree, content to lay in each others arms quietly for a while, occasionally exchanging gentle kisses.
"Can we...I've never...." Harry stammered and blushed slightly. He took a deep breath and tried again.
"Make love to me? Please?" Itachi's eyes widened at the soft question. He moved so that he could see directly into Harry's eyes. The emerald orbs were filled with love, determination and fear, but fear of what he was asking or what was going to happen tomorrow night?
"Please? I'm sure about this Itachi. Tomorrow I might...this way we both get good memories in case, right? And even if I don't we may never see each other like this again."
"Are you sure?"
"Positive." Harry moved so that their lips met. He knew what he wanted and it was Itachi. He'd never felt like this about anyone before. That thing with Cho had been a simple schoolboy crush; heck it didn't really even count as that much. Itachi stood and pulled Harry further past the tree line just in case, last thing he needed was his partner or his little brother stumbling across them! Itachi glared at the hard ground and Harry smirked. With a muttered word there was a comfortable mattress for them to use. Itachi gently pushed Harry down onto the mattress, they had all night so he planned to take things slowly and thoroughly enjoy himself. And from the look on Harry's face he had the same idea. They continued kissing for some time, hands roaming underneath clothes until Itachi eventually pulled Harry's shirt off and froze in shock. Harry paled and tried to pull away but Itachi stopped him. Harry looked down in shame; refusing to look up at what he was sure was an expression of disgust.
"Who did this to you?" Harry still refused to look at him and pulled away, wrapping his arms around his chest.
"Harry." Itachi reached out and Harry flinched. He moved, faster than Harry could dodge and pulled the teen into his arms. Harry began to fight his hold, tears streaming down his face but Itachi refused to let go.
"I love you, no matter what. They don't matter, don't change anything." He murmured, trying to calm Harry before he made enough noise to alert someone to his presence. Itachi had to push his anger aside to comfort him, how could anyone have done such a thing to Harry? He kissed Harry's hair gently, waiting for him to calm down and gently ran his fingers over the scars. Scars that spelled words, he didn't have to know the language to know they were not kind.
"What do they say love, tell me please."
"Fr..freak, murderer, monster..." Harry trailed off and Itachi held him tighter.
"Don't you dare believe that." He hissed in his loves ear.
"You are none of those things. The person who did that to you, they are the monster. You understand?" Itachi gently tilted Harry's face up so that tear filled green met his. Harry stared at him for a while as if unable to believe what he'd said before slowly nodding. Itachi smiled and then kissed him hard. Harry flinched slightly as Itachi moved, gently kissing all of the scars. The words weren't the only scars Harry's body held, some were from training and various fights while others had obviously been made under more painful circumstances but Itachi kissed them all lovingly, never flinching away from the sight and slowly Harry relaxed and began to enjoy himself again. He knew that this wouldn't cure Harry's fear of the scars being seen completely but it would go a long way top helping. He paused as he reached Harry's pants but the younger teen simply lifted his hips. Smiling Itachi removed the clothing and then let Harry do the same for him. Harry gasped at the first feel of bare skin meeting and Itachi kissed him again.
"We need to get up." Itachi murmured, nuzzling his lover's neck. That earnt him a sleepy sigh.
"Don't wanna." Harry mumbled and Itachi laughed.
"Yes well I sure you want even less for Kakashi or my brother to find us like this." Harry was up like a shot and dressed before Itachi could blink. With a wave of Harry's hand Itachi found himself dressed and their mattress gone. He smiled, magic sure made hiding things like this easier, there wasn't a single wrinkle in their clothes. He smiled at Harry and the younger teen threw himself into his arms, holding him tightly.
"I'm scared." The wizard whispered.
"Everything will be fine, it has to be." Itachi whispered and Harry nodded. They broke apart as Kisame appeared. Harry smiled at the other man and received one in return.
"Nice to finally meet you." Harry said politely.
"You too. Never thought Itachi would find himself someone who could actually stand him." Kisame grinned at his glaring partner.
"We've got to go. Kakashi is headed this way." Itachi nodded and pulled Harry in for one last kiss.
"Be careful." Harry whispered and Itachi was gone.
"Look after him if...?" Kisame nodded gravely and then vanished. Sighing Harry headed back to the clearing to meet Kakashi.
Chapter 10: Chapter 10
Disclaimer: Still don't own.
Glad people liked the fact they finally got to meet.
I got a review filling me in on the actual timeline, thank you Ox King. Good thing I listed this as an AU. As to Sasuke going to Orochimaru, in this Naruto stopped him. Tsunade still decided to teach Sakura and Naruto has received some training from Jiraiya but without leaving for an extended period of time.
Harry knelt nervously in the middle of the circle dressed only in a pair of loose pants. The others had left three hours ago and should have been travelling for most of that. Itachi had shown up after they had left, just long enough to kiss Harry before vanishing into the forest. The parting had been hard, the nights coming events weighing heavily on all of them. He'd given them all a hug, even a shocked Sasuke. The look on the teens face had been priceless but no one had laughed at him. He could feel midnight approaching and forced himself to relax, it would only be worse if he were tense. He knew that Itachi and Kisame were somewhere to the north while the others were to the south. The memory of the previous night made him smile softly. Maybe he'd be nicer to Kakashi and stop hiding his book for a while to say thanks. Thanks to his magical healing he wasn't sore, without it Kakashi would have known what had happened for sure with the way he would have been moving. He wished he wasn't alone for this but he knew he had to be for everyone's safety. At least if this killed him he would go happy. He began to meditate lightly, preparing his mind for what was to come.
Itachi flinched and leapt to his feet as a blood-curdling scream reached them. Kisame laid a restraining hand on his arm. They exchanged a worried look as the screams continued. They were far enough that there was no way they should be hearing Harry's screams and yet they were. Itachi wanted nothing more than to go to him, to hold him through his pain but he knew he couldn't. There was nothing he could do but watch and listen and he hated it, he felt so helpless. He let Kisame push him back down to the ground and accepted the offered food as something to distract himself with. There was no way they'd be sleeping tonight.
All four ninja flinched as the screams started. Kakashi said nothing as they moved closer to him and for once he wasn't reading his book.
"Harry." Naruto whispered and Kakashi put an arm around the teen's shoulders, offering silent comfort. None of them liked hearing a friend in such pain. Even Sasuke had lost his mask and had hidden his face from the firelight. Sakura was shivering slightly and for once she didn't complain when Naruto moved closer to her, accepting the comfort of a friend. The four stayed huddled together, trying to ignore what they could hear.
"Down!" Sasuke suddenly yelled and they all flattened themselves as some sort of shockwave passed over them, putting the fire out and plunging them into darkness. They lay in the darkness and sudden eerie silence until one by one the eventually got up. Kakashi got the fire going again and they sat to wait for the time limit Harry had given them.
Kakashi dropped to the ground in what had once been a lush clearing. The ground was now burnt, ash blowing in the early morning breeze. He cautiously approached the middle, eyes never leaving the lump lying there and praying with all his might that Harry was still alive. He dropped to his knees, feeling for a pulse and breathed a sigh of relief as he eventually found one.
"Sakura." He called and the girl moved quickly to his side. He'd left the teens at the edge of the clearing, not wanting them to come closer if there was nothing to be done for their friend. He was happy to be able to call for Sakura's help since it would let them know that Harry was still alive, for now at least. The teenager was covered in blood and was breathing shallowly but he thought he'd live. He watched as Sakura went to work, giving Harry the potions he'd given her for just this purpose before using her own skills to help him. Eventually she sat back on her heels and smiled at her teacher tiredly.
"He's stable, we should get him back to Konoha though." Kakashi nodded and called for Naruto and Sasuke. They cleaned Harry's face a bit before wrapping him in a blanket and placing him on the stretcher they'd brought for this exact purpose. Just as they were about to leave Kakashi paused and looked to the trees, he knew they were being watched.
"Naruto keep the stretcher steady, Harry will not thank you if he falls off because you tipped it." He called to his student. He could at least let the missing-nin know that Harry had survived.
Iruka knocked on the half open door and smiled as Harry looked up from his book. The teen smiled and motioned for him to come in. Iruka took a seat in the chair placed beside Harry's bed. He couldn't believe the changes the teen had undergone since he'd last seen him. His hair was no longer messy and was now long enough to just brush his shoulders, the green eyes were the same but the glasses were gone. Even stuck in a hospital bed Iruka could tell he'd put on some height and overall he just looked healthier. Before he could tell that Harry had been malnourished as a child but now he looked as if he'd gotten three good meals a day his entire life. He'd been busy teaching the day they left so he hadn't gotten the chance to say goodbye before team 7 had left top accompany Harry on some sort of coming of age thing his people did and he had been busy when they had arrived back. From what he'd heard he was glad he hadn't seen Harry then. According to talk several of the medical staff had thought him dead at first until they'd seen him breath. Iruka did not want to know what sort of barbaric practises Harry's people put their children through to show they were an adult if it left them as bad as that.
Iruka focused back on the present as he felt a tug on his sleeve. Harry couldn't talk due to damage to his throat, although the nurse Iruka had spoken to assured him it was temporary. The teen had his head tilted inquisitively, causing Iruka to smile. Harry grinned in return.
"I'm sorry I haven't been to see you before this. The Academy and missions office have been busier than usual." Harry shrugged to show he understood.
"I heard about the condition you were in when you arrived, its good to see you looking a lot better than that." Harry looked around and then grabbed some paper. He carefully spelled out 'thanks'. His language lessons had been progressing nicely but he was better at reading than writing. They both looked to the door as Kakashi wandered in. Harry glared at the clock on the wall and then at the older man causing Iruka to muffle a laugh.
"Harry, Iruka." Kakashi greeted, smiling underneath his mask at the two. Harry's look said very plainly that Kakashi had better have a good excuse for being late.
"The Hokage wanted to see me." Iruka watched as Harry studied Kakashi closely before finally nodding in acceptance.
"Doctors said I can take you home now, you just have to rest your throat till your voice comes back." Harry grinned and scrambled out of bed, swaying slightly before straightening. Iruka relaxed as the teen stood under his own power, he'd been ready to catch him if necessary.
"Here." Kakashi tossed him a bundle of clothing and the two Shinobi turned away to let him dress. Harry held up the piece of paper he'd written on earlier and Kakashi nodded.
"Care to walk with us Iruka?" The Chuunin hesitated but Harry tugged on his sleave so he agreed.
The three walked slowly down the streets towards Kakashi's building, mindful of the fact that Harry had just been released from a two-week stay in the hospital. Harry was keeping up a good pace but it was obvious he still tired easily. But the teen was smiling happily as they walked, just glad to be outside again.
"Harry!" Iruka and Kakashi moved to catch Harry as the teen fell under Naruto's added weight.
"Naruto! Be careful!! We don't need you putting Harry back in the hospital!" Iruka berated his old student. The blond hung his head but Harry just ruffled his hair and smiled.
"Hey! You grew!" A few groans were heard as Naruto commented on a fact the others had noticed a while ago. It was true though, Harry had shot up from 5'6" to a good 5'11". A five-inch growth spurt in so little time was impossible Iruka realised with a frown. Just what had been done to the boy?
"Harry!" Iruka looked up to see the students tackling a familiar teenager and smiled. The teen grabbed one of the children and swung her up onto his shoulders, laughing as more clung to his legs. It was good to hear him laughing again, even if it was a little hoarse still. He played with the children for a few more minutes before heading for Iruka.
"Hey." The teen greeted as he sat beside the teacher.
"So you finally got your voice back." Iruka commented. He still didn't know what had happened to Harry and frankly he was still worried.
"Yep, all healed and as good as new." Harry grinned and then laughed as he watched the children
"What happened to you Harry? Sudden growth like that isn't natural and the condition you were in..." Harry stilled beside him, smile fading.
"It was just a coming of age thing Iruka, no big deal." Harry shrugged.
"No big deal! You almost died! Harry please tell me what is going on." Iruka honestly liked the teenager and was happy to see the way he had bonded with the Naruto and his teammates, especially Naruto. He sighed as Harry got up and moved back to the children, ignoring his questions.
Tsunade looked up as Harry was shown into her office. She smiled at the nervous teenager and motioned for him to sit.
"What can I do for you Harry?"
"Iruka's been asking questions about what happened to me and I want to tell him, all of it. Who I am, where I come from, everything."
Sorry, very little Itachi in this one but I have to set up Harry's life in Konoha and following two guys who are basically continually on the run isn't very interesting to write. He should show up more next chapter though.
Chapter 11: Chapter 11
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
Harry whistled as he walked down the streets, occasionally waving to some of the various people he was getting to know. His talk with the Hokage had gone well, she'd agreed that he could tell whoever he wanted the truth about himself as long as he was positive they could keep it secret. So know he was going to find Iruka since it was the older mans day off. When he'd told her who he wanted to tell Tsunade had decided Iruka needed a break from the Academy, therefore he was being assigned the mission of getting Harry up to at least Academy graduation standard in everything. Harry wasn't too sure how he felt about that. It meant that he'd be a Konoha ninja and would tie him to the village for life. Sure, if it came down to it he could probably fake his own death well enough to fool them but he didn't like they way it would be limiting his options. He knew Tsunade just wanted a way to make sure he would fight for Konoha other then his word and that she was looking out for the village as it was her responsibility and that it could be a lot worse but he hated people trying to control his life. He'd had enough of that thank you very much.
Harry sighed and then paused; looking into the alley he was in front of. He frowned as he made out several villagers and shinobi attacking something or someone. He slipped into the alley and worked his way closer trying to see what they were doing. What he saw made his blood boil and his magic snap at its bonds.
"LET HIM GO!" The group sprang back at the sound of Harry's voice, giving him his first clear view of the poor boy. Harry knew that at the moment he was probably a fairly intimidating sight but he didn't care. What gave these...these idiots the right to do something like this. Remembering what Itachi had taught him about killing intent he mentally smirked. He had been taught as a method of scaring Death Eaters and making them easier targets. With how mad he was at the moment, plus his magic swirling around him almost visibly it was enough to make even the seasoned ninja in the group pause.
"Now." That he lowered to almost a hiss, being a parselmouth really came in handy for freaking people out. They slowly began moving away from the bloodied form as Harry began stalking closer. He pushed a little magic towards his eyes, making the emerald glow, giving them the look of a cat, a very pissed off radioactive one. The more cowardly villagers broke and ran but that still left a good-sized group. With everything Itachi had told him he didn't want to risk conjuring some snakes to scare them, he really didn't need to be connected to that Orochimaru idiot, why was it no matter where he was the bad guy had to have a snake obsession? It certainly made his life more difficult when people learnt about his 'gift'. His hand almost slipped down to the kunai holster Kakashi had managed to get him to wear but he knew he was no match for them in a straight out fight so he had to scare them off. He took a deep breath and then raised silencing and notice me-not-charms around the alley, the last thing he needed was for anyone else to wander in to investigate. Harry smirked and a few shifted uncomfortable, not sure about what this unknown person was about to do. So Harry decided to not keep them in suspense any longer. He took a deep breath and unleashed his magic, being careful to protect their victim with several shielding spells.
Harry carefully lay his burden down before going into what he had rightly assumed to be the bathroom. He grabbed a rag and wet it before going back to the bed and carefully cleaning the blood from a whisker marked face. Even unconscious Naruto flinched back slightly.
"Shh, it's okay Naruto. You're safe now. I'll protect you." He whispered, carefully channelling his magic into the boy's body to accelerate his healing. He was struggling to control his anger at what had been done to his friend. It had brought back many unpleasant memories from his own childhood at the mercy of his family and his cousin's gang. Harry carefully stripped the unconscious teen and slipped him into the nearby pyjamas before deciding to take a look around the apartment. He had been too worried about Naruto's condition when he'd arrived to really take any notice of the place, although he did plan to hex the woman downstairs later for what she'd said when Harry had asked for the apartment number. What he saw made his heart ache; no child should grow up in such conditions. It may be bigger than his cupboard but the whole apartment wasn't much bigger than Dursley's master bedroom. A quick check of the kitchen had him ready to do damage but he forced the emotions back. It took scant minutes to ward the apartment and then he apparated out and to the alley next to Kakashi's building. He left the alley and headed for the shops, specifically the grocers.
Naruto blinked and sat up slowly, looking around in confusion. How had he gotten back to his apartment and into bed? The last thing he remembered was being in the alley and... He let the thought trail off not wanting to remember what had happened. He slipped out of bed and crept through the apartment. He followed his nose into the kitchenette and looked around. Seeing a note on the table with a small bottle next to it he picked the note up.
There's food warming in the oven, I expect it all to be eaten when I get back. The small bottle is a strong pain killer in case you need it. I had some errands to run but I'll be back in a few hours. As long as you stay inside the apartment you'll be safe till I get back.
Naruto stared at the note in shock. Had Harry found him after they had left him? Or had he seen what had happened? Naruto went over to the oven and pulled out the most delicious smelling meal he'd ever seen. Smiling slightly he sat down and dug in. curious he picked up the bottle and took a sniff, nose scrunching up at the smell, he was glad the fox had taken care of his injuries, there was no way e wanted to have to drink something that smelt like that!
Tsunade and Kakashi looked up as Harry stormed past the distressed guards, paying no attention to the two ANBU members. Tsunade waved them off and waited for Harry to speak, he was obviously very upset about something.
"Is it normal for the people of this village to go around attacking their own people?" Harry all but hissed in anger. Tsunade paled slightly; there was only one person she could think of that that would happen to.
"Naruto. I hate to think what else would have happened if I hadn't noticed! I left him in his apartment after warding the place heavily, no one but me is getting in there without my say so. I healed what I could and he's in no danger, now."
"And his attackers?" Tsunade blinked at the vicious smirk on Harry's usually cheerful face.
"Will think twice about ever doing something like that again. I do not look kindly upon people who harm children." Both shinobi could see the old pain in his eyes.
"I didn't hurt them, physically. Just gave them the scare of their lives." Seeing something in the other twos faces he slumped into a chair.
"This isn't the first time he's been attacked is it? I've seen the way people look at him, what they say when they think he can't hear. Have you seen the food he has? Why? Why is he treated like this?" the anger had drained out of his voice leaving him tired. Tsunade and Kakashi exchanged looks, should they tell Harry the truth?
"Do you know what happened fourteen years ago?" Tsunade asked. Harry shook his head. So the two shinobi proceeded to explain exactly what had happened and what it meant for Naruto.
"Let me get this straight. The Hokage sealed the demon in Naruto when he was a baby and ever since then people have treated him as if he is the demon?" They nodded, not sure as to how Harry would react.
"How stupid are they?" Harry yelled and they relaxed, at least Harry seemed to not care about the Kyuubi being sealed in Naruto.
"Did they never stop and think that if, if Naruto were the demon then treating him the way they have would just get them massacred? Instead he's done everything he can to protect those bigoted idiotic morons!" Harry shook his head in disbelief at the stupidity of the villagers.
"I should have done more than just scare those freaks." He muttered and Kakashi smiled slightly.
"Thank you for telling me Hokage. I better get back before Naruto goes stir crazy from being locked in." With that Harry apparated from the office and straight into Naruto's apartment, leaving behind two surprised ninja's.
Naruto jumped, grabbing a kunai on instinct and throwing it towards the sound. He blushed sheepishly as he saw Harry dodge the weapon.
"Oops?" Harry smiled slightly and shook his head.
"My fault; should have used the door." Harry studied him critically, making Naruto squirm slightly.
"You okay? Any pain?"
"I'm fine, I'm a fast healer." Naruto answered nervously. Harry nodded and drew Naruto into a brief hug before steering him towards the old couch, pulling Naruto down beside him.
"Because of Kyuubi." Harry stated quietly and Naruto tensed. He could feel the younger teens fear and closed his eyes in pain. He grabbed Naruto in a hug as the boy tried to bolt, pulling him into his lap and cradling him as if he were a child, knowing that like himself Naruto would not have received much physical affection as a child.
"It's okay Naruto. Tsunade told me after I told her about the attack. You are not responsible for what happened. It's okay little brother." Naruto's head snapped around and he stared at Harry in shock. Did Harry mean it? The older teen smiled down at him warmly.
"Brother?" Naruto whispered and Harry nodded.
"I've never had a real family Naruto but I think I'd like having a brother. What do you think?"
"You don't care about the fox?"
"No. You are not Kyuubi, you are Naruto. If those stupid villagers are too blind to see that then it's their loss." It was a good thing he was already sitting because the force of Naruto's hug would have knocked him off his feet.
"Thank you." Naruto moved to sit beside Harry but leant his head on his new brothers shoulder. Harry smiled and put an arm around his shoulders.
"There is a lot about me you don't know Naruto and I think its time for you to hear it. But you can't tell anyone, Hokage's orders. Okay?"
"I can keep a secret!" Harry took a deep breath and told Naruto everything, even his relationship with Itachi. Naruto remained quiet after he was finished and it worried Harry. He knew Naruto considered Sasuke his best friend and they still thought Itachi was guilty.
"Naruto?" Harry asked hesitantly.
"If you like Itachi then he can't be all bad. Something else happened that night, didn't it?" Harry smiled, Naruto was a lot smarter than most credited him with.
"Yes, I can't tell you what because I promised but Itachi is innocent." Naruto thought about it for a while before grinning.
"Does that make Sasuke my brother now too?" Harry choked and then laughed. Returning Naruto's grin he attacked, tickling his little brother until the other was incoherent form laughter and tears.
"Hey." Harry smiled at his lover and Itachi pulled him into a hug, kissing him hello.
"Anything interesting happen lately?" Itachi asked as he ran his fingers through Harry's longer hair. It was nice that Harry was taller now, he'd been a bit short for his age before and it made Itachi fight not to think of him as younger than he actually was.
"I found out some stuff, about Naruto." Harry said quietly.
"Kyuubi." Harry nodded in answer to Itachi's statement.
"Found him in an alley being attacked."
"Give them a good scare?" Harry couldn't see it since he was lying against him but he could hear the proud smirk in his lover's voice.
"But of course. Now I wish I'd done more. How Naruto's turned out to be such a great kid I'll never know." Harry sighed tiredly and snuggled closer.
"One, he's only four years younger than you so you can't really call him a kid and two, you're a pretty good example of how it can happen. You may not have had it quite as bad but it was bad enough. At least he doesn't scar physically because of the Kyuubi."
"There was too much hate for them to heal." Harry said softly, looking down at his chest where the scars lay.
"They show how strong you are Harry, you survived what they did and didn't give into that hate. Does Naruto know you know?"
"I told him. I...he was so afraid Itachi. As if he thought I would hurt him. Once I got it through his head that I don't care about the demon I told him about who I am. He figured out straight away that there was more to the massacre than people believed. I have a smart little brother." Harry grinned and Itachi smiled.
"Little brother huh?"
"Yep. He even asked if that meant Sasuke is his brother now." Itachi laughed.
"I can just see the look on my brothers face if Naruto said that to him."
"Naruto knows to keep it a secret. I want to help him Itachi. You should see his apartment and the food they give him. I've seen stray dogs eat better. The place is bigger than my cupboard was but it's no bigger than some of the rooms in the Dursley's. It's not right. And you should meet the lady who runs the building, the utter bitch. I was so tempted to crucio her on my way out."
"You didn't, did you?" Itachi relaxed as he felt Harry shake his head.
"I wanted to though." Itachi smiled slightly, he knew Harry had a temper, especially when his protective instincts were roused but he didn't like him using Dark Magic unless there was no other choice. He didn't want him to ever run the risk of becoming addicted to the stuff.
"Whatever you do you can't let people know it's for Naruto or they will turn you away as well." Harry nodded again.
"Now, how about we train?" Harry thudded his head back against Itachi earning an oomph of surprise.
"Stupid, I forgot. Tsunade is making me get a tutor so I can get fully to genin level. She said I never have to take the chuunin exam but I know that's what she wants. She's trying to tie me to the village."
"Looks like it. As soon as you're a genin you won't be able to leave without being labelled a missing-nin."
"I don't want to fight Itachi, I'm so tired of fighting. I told her no but she won't listen."
"If it wasn't for me she would. Maybe you should."
"Don't you dare finish that sentence." Harry hissed.
"I love you, I am not giving you up! I've lost everyone and everything I've ever lost I will not add you to that list." Itachi nodded and hugged Harry, part of him glad that Harry was willing to stay with him even though it would cause him problems.
"If worse comes to worse I can fake my death and leave. I don't want to but I will if I have to. I can change my appearance with glamour easily enough."
"Leave it as a last resort. You deserve the chance to live in Konoha, you're happy there. Even if you do take the exam you could always beg to teach at the Academy or something." Harry nodded and then stood.
"Lets train then." Itachi grinned and Harry gulped, he was so getting his arse kicked.
Harry collapsed back into the grass, watching as the glad repaired itself from the damage they'd inflicted. He'd been right, Itachi had wiped him out without breaking a sweat.
"That was fun." Harry sent him a glare worthy of Severus and Itachi chuckled.
"You do realise that if I can't move in the morning Kakashi is going to tease me like mad and insinuate that the pain is not from training?"
"So?" Harry growled and launched himself at his lover, pinning the older man and proceeding to tickle him. If Sasuke had been able to see the scene he would never have believed his eyes, then again neither would most people who had ever heard of the Uchiha. They finally separated and lay together, too exhausted and content to move.
"I'm telling Iruka tomorrow, I get the feeling he's who Tsunade wants to teach me since he's already been helping me with the language."
"He'll probably accept it, after all from what I've heard he was the first to publicly acknowledge Naruto. He's smart to from what I remember so he'll work out that there is something more to the massacre."
"I wish you'd let me tell them what really happened."
"No, its better this way."
"You're nuts." Harry stated.
"How can it be better? Your own brother hates you and wants to kill you."
"Better he target me than the real killer."
"And if he gets to the point where he can kill you? What do we do then?" Itachi didn't answer, having no answer himself. Before Harry the answer would have been simple, let Sasuke kill him. But now? He had no answer.
Chapter 12: Chapter 12
Disclaimer: Don't own them.
"What have you and Harry been up to lately?" Iruka spun around to see Kakashi crouching on his windowsill. He rolled his eyes mentally at the other ninja. Honestly, didn't he know how to use the door?
"You'll find out when everyone else does. And get off my window." Kakashi dropped into the room, looking around casually. He'd never actually been inside the teacher's small house before.
"You two have been spending a lot of time together." Kakashi commented out of the blue.
"I'm his teacher for now. Though that will change tomorrow."
"He graduates as a full genin tomorrow."
"In only a month? That is fast." Kakashi followed him into the living room.
"He really only needed the theory and history aspects of an Academy education. He knew most of the rest of the curriculum, some things beyond it, which is understandable considering why he was given training in the first place. He may not be classed as a genius but he is an incredible student, even when you can tell he'd rather be doing something else."
"So he still doesn't want to be a shinobi?" Kakashi was genuinely curious, he and Harry hadn't talked much about it since Tsunade had made her decision.
"Hates the idea. He doesn't like killing at all. He could be ANBU or a hunter if he wanted to and tried hard enough but I doubt he'll ever go above genin, chuunin if he's pushed hard enough. If we can get him to chuunin I'll recommend him for the Academy, the children love him and he's so happy when with them."
"I can tell, he's done wonders with my team, even Sasuke relaxes slightly around him." Neither said anything about what they were both wondering, what would happen if Sasuke ever learned of Harry's relationship with his brother?
"So what have you two been doing other than training? Come on Iruka, you can tell me." Iruka turned to tell Kakashi no again and gasped in shock. The silver haired man had moved up behind him without him noticing and they were now standing nearly nose-to-nose.
"N..no." Iruka knew he was blushing and tried to fight it down, only succeeding in making himself redder. He could practically feel Kakashi smirking underneath his mask, hang on since when could he actually see Kakashi's lips? Iruka gasped as said lips grazed his gently. The gasp allowed Kakashi to slip his tongue into Iruka's mouth and deepen the kiss. He pulled back after a few seconds and slipped his mask back into place, smiling softly behind it at the dazed chuunin as he backed off a bit to give him room.
"Kakashi? What?" Iruka shook his head to clear his heads.
"I would have thought it's obvious. I like you Iruka; actually I am attracted to you, a lot. Have been for ages."
"Me? Why?" Iruka was sure he was as red as a tomato but he couldn't do anything about it. Kakashi shrugged.
"Loads of reasons. You're cute, especially when you blush. You're not afraid to stand up to people ranked higher than you. You care about people. Pick one, I can't." Kakashi fidgeted slightly as Iruka simply stared in silence. He hoped he hadn't judged wrong and was about to get kicked out painfully. He stayed still as Iruka moved in closer, brown eyes studying his visible one. Iruka suddenly broke into the most stunning smile Kakashi had ever seen and stepped in close, hands going to the edges of his mask and carefully rolling it up enough to reveal his mouth. Kakashi finally relaxed as hesitant lips brushed his. He smiled and put his hands around Iruka's waist, pulling him even closer and gently deepening the kiss.
"You passed!" Naruto whooped in joy, throwing his arms around his big brother joyfully before stepping back to study the hitai-ate tied around Harry's head.
"Congratulations Harry!" Sakura said smiling happily at the older teen. Harry was glad she was firmly fixated on Sasuke or else he had the feeling he'd be the one she was chasing after, he had a small following of females from various age groups, especially since his majority and it drove him crazy. Itachi just found it hilarious when he wasn't feeling jealous. Sasuke just smirked as if to say 'of course he passed, what's the big deal?' Harry was glad he'd spent the time learning all of the Uchiha smirks by watching Itachi or he wouldn't have a clue what was going on with Sasuke most of the time.
"Good job kid." Kakashi said, smiling happily at his flatmate. Harry smiled back but the older men could see the sadness in it, Harry really didn't want to be shinobi. He was only acting so happy because of the kids although Iruka had the feeling Naruto suspected from the way he was acting to keep attention from Harry by jumping around and yelling like an idiot.
"Mind if I borrow Naruto for a bit?" Harry asked out of the blue. Iruka sent a subtle nod at Kakashi so he nodded as well.
"Sure. Have fun you two." Naruto grinned and grabbed onto Harry's arm.
"Where are we going? Can we get Ramen?" Iruka smiled and laughed softly as the two disappeared. He could feel Kakashi watching him.
"This have something to do with why you've been spending so much time with my cook?"
"He's not your cook Kakashi and yes it is but that's all I'm saying. I need to report to the Hokage. Have fun training you two." Iruka smiled at the teens and left.
Naruto followed Harry happily as they walked through the village, ignoring the usual glares although secretly happy that Harry was returning them at an increased intensity. He remembered what Harry had called him last month and it made it so much easier to ignore the glares and whispers, they didn't matter as long as he had his friends and brother.
"Where are we going Harry?" Naruto asked as they headed into a section of the village where the streets were lined with small, nice houses. He usually only came to this area when going to see Iruka-sensei since he lived only a few streets away.
"Nearly there Naruto." Harry extended his hand slightly and Naruto latched on, smiling, happy that Harry didn't care about being seen with the 'demon'. He frowned slightly in confusion as Harry stopped in front of a newish one-story house.
"Put your hand on that post and state your full name." Naruto followed Harry's instructions and then followed him up the path to the door. He watched in surprise as Harry pulled out some keys and unlocked the door. They slipped out of their shoes and Naruto stared around the fully furnished living room in awe.
"Kitchen's through there as well as a small dining room. Bedrooms, study and bathrooms are down here." Naruto followed him down the hall and into each of the four bedrooms.
"Best bit for a shinobi is out here." Harry opened the backdoor and led him outside. In the backyard was a training area and small dojo, fully equipped. Harry let him wander around to his hearts content before they went back inside and into the living room.
"It's great Harry! So you're finally moving out of Kakashi-sensei's." Harry smiled and shook his head. Naruto stared dumbly down at the set of keys that were being pressed into his hand.
"Happy Birthday for the last fourteen years. It's all yours Naruto." Naruto stared at Harry as if he'd gone mad.
"I can't. What about you? You can't give this to me." Naruto tried to give the keys back but Harry wouldn't let him.
"I bought this place for you Naruto. I'm happy where I am at the moment, though you can expect me over frequently to visit and Iruka's only two streets over so he'll be over a lot too probably. You're my brother Naruto and family looks after each other. Don't worry about the cost, I've got plenty. I want to do this for you. You deserve a safe place to live, not that apartment of yours. The property is fully warded, no one meaning you harm can step foot on it. When you touched the post I transferred the wards to you as the owner. Iruka helped me get this all set up with the sort of stuff you like and the equipment you need. I'll have to show you all the neat tricks we put in, some magical and some not. All of the rooms have been magically enlarged without changing the outside dimensions, same with the backyard so that no one walking by can tell. Though I did set up a heavily warded room under the house that I may need to use occasionally but I can apparate in and out of that without disturbing you. I needed somewhere secret for various magical experiments." Harry watched as Naruto stared down at the keys in his hand.
"You...you really mean it? This is all for me?" Harry smiled and pulled his little brother in for a hug when he noticed the sheen to blue eyes, signalling withheld tears.
"I mean it little brother, this is all yours. The cupboard and fridge are even charmed to supply food, proper food. They'll only give you ramen once a week. You can't live off that stuff your whole life you know. Your wardrobe also has new clothes, in colours other than orange. I don't want to lose the only sibling I've ever had just because an enemy saw his clothes." Harry pushed him away playfully and Naruto smiled around the escaping tears.
"It's okay to cry you know." Naruto nodded and let the tears come until Harry decided they'd lasted long enough and began a tickle match.
"Naruto like his surprise?" Harry smiled at the memory and leant back into the embrace.
"He loved it once he got it through his head that I was serious and that it was all his. Thanks for the ideas on the training area, it really helped Iruka and me." Harry twisted in the lose embrace so that he could kiss his lover hello.
"I think I may have a way for us to meet up again." Itachi was suddenly all ears.
"I put a room in under the house for magic. No one but me can get in unless I let them. If I managed to leave a portkey somewhere for you it would be a simple thing for you to use it and we could see each other. Naruto knows about us so he wouldn't say anything even if he found out, as long as you didn't do anything against Konoha and you wouldn't." Itachi stared at him in shock before smiling and pulling him into a kiss.
"That could work. Harry you're brilliant."
"Hardly, you're the genius in this relationship. Oh, I graduated today. Don't know what'll happen next but I'm officially a ninja of Konoha."
"In only a month, congratulations." Harry nodded, relaxing in his lovers embrace. He really hoped his idea worked, he hated not being able to see him in the flesh, especially with the life Itachi lived. They both knew their relationship could end through death at any moment so they took everyone they could get. Kakashi and Kisame both tended to let them sleep whenever they wanted to when they could to give them that time.
"By the way, Naruto's really getting into the brother thing." Itachi could hear the amusement in Harry's voice even though Harry had his face buried in his neck.
"Yep, especially the threatening your siblings significant other with bodily harm bit. Basically do anything to hurt me and he'll set Kyuubi on you and if that doesn't work he'll set Sasuke's fan girls on you." Itachi shuddered.
"Is it bad that I find the second scarier?" Harry laughed.
"Nope, Kyuubi's just a big fluff ball."
"And you know this how?" Itachi frowned in worry, how on earth could Harry know that? He knew from previous surveillance that Naruto avoided talking about the fox if at all possible.
"Calm down, sheesh. You sounded like Severus before he got to know me. Kyu was curious about me after hearing what I told Naruto so I figured we might as well chat. I used Legilimency to get into Naruto's mind and met Kyu. He's not that bad if you talk to him. Turns out attacking Konoha wasn't exactly his idea and he feels bad about what happened. I negotiated better terms between them and they're both a lot happier now. Naruto gets easier access to Kyu's chakra plus training from him and Kyu gets more access to Naruto's senses and better living conditions. A win-win situation for all."
"And if something had gone wrong during your little meeting?" Itachi asked, still worried.
"I knew what I was doing, I would have pulled out immediately, promise." Itachi knew that was all he'd get from the stubborn young man so he let it go.
"All right, just don't do those things to often, okay?"
"Okay. I have a meeting with the Hokage tomorrow about what happens now that I'm a genin. She's got me as a shinobi now she has to figure out what to do with me."
"I've been thinking. You could claim your magic as a bloodline. Magic is just a type of energy, right? So you could say you have the ability to pull energy from around you and shape it to your will. Since you're claiming to be from far away no one could really say you're lying."
"It would also bring more attention then I want. But it could work. I'll ask Tsunade tomorrow what she thinks about the idea. Want to train a bit or do something else?" Itachi grinned and Harry suddenly found himself trying to get away as Itachi had him pinned and was tickling him mercilessly. Harry shrieked and attacked back, laughing hard enough to cry. The sudden tickle war didn't last very long as they soon began kissing.
Chapter 13: Chapter 13
Disclaimer: Still don't own them.
Harry sat nervously outside the Hokage's office. He'd been sitting there for twenty minutes already and had been steadily getting more and more nervous. He looked up as the secretary cleared her throat.
"The Hokage will see you now." Harry nodded, stood and then entered the office. He gave a small bow.
"Harry. Congratulations on passing and the beginning of your shinobi career. Now, obviously since you didn't graduate with an Academy class we have to find some other way to place you with a team. I have come up with a solution to this. You will be joining Team 7 under Kakashi. You already know your teammates and get along with them so that won't cause any problems. Plus it will enable them to take more missions since they have had to cut back when one team member has been receiving training from the personal sensei. Having an older presence on the team will also help them mature a bit. At least, I hope you haven't picked up Kakashi's disgusting habits?" Harry smiled.
"No ma'am. Actually I think he's getting sick of my stealing his books and resetting all of his clocks." Tsunade laughed at the mischievous look on his face.
"Impressive. Any questions?" Harry paused to think about it.
"Not at the moment ma'am. Itachi actually had a suggestion that is worth mentioning thought it could bring more attention then I really want."
"Oh?" Tsunade frowned slightly at the mention of the missing-nin but didn't say anything else. As long as Harry stayed loyal she couldn't really do anything.
"He suggested I claim my magic as a bloodline if needed." She thought about it.
"Not a bad idea in theory."
"Magic is simply manipulating a different type of energy to chakra so it is plausible I guess." Harry shrugged.
"I don't plan on really using it unless I have to though." She nodded.
Harry leant against the bridge rail, lost in thought. Today was his first day as an official member of Team 7 and he was nervous. His having the occasionally spar with and watching them was different to actually being part of the team.
"Good morning Harry." He looked up and smiled at Sakura.
"Good morning Sakura. Looking forward to training or missions?"
"Because you get to spend time with Sasuke?" She blushed and opened her mouth to retort but he beat her too it.
"You should be a shinobi only because it is what you want to do with your life, not because you think it will cause a boy to like or notice you. Getting yourself killed because you're too boy crazy to fully pay attention or train properly only puts others in danger as well and is a stupid reason to die. You've known Sasuke how long? Has he ever done anything to make you believe he feels anything more than friendship for you? Think hard about it. I know what its like to be in his place, with girls and boys forever chasing after you, its not a nice place to be. Stop being just another obsessed fan girl and just be his friend. If it's meant to happen it will happen but really, you're only fourteen. Wait a few years before trying to get stuck in a relationship, it'll be better in the long run." Sakura stared at him in shock before turning and walking away, lost in thought.
"Thank you." Harry smiled at Sasuke as the teen revealed himself.
"No problem, like I said, I know what its like. Hopefully what I said will get through to her and she'll give you some space, at least for a few years." Harry shrugged as Sasuke joined him at the rail.
"Where are you from?" The sudden question caught him off guard.
"Far, far away."
"We know nearly nothing about you and yet the Hokage was quick to trust you."
"Was she? Why do you think I live with Kakashi and helped at the Academy when you were away on missions? It was to keep me under watch."
"And yet now you are a shinobi of the leaf." Sasuke pointed out.
"It wasn't my idea. I've been fighting for so long, I just want to live in peace. The Hokage knows everything Sasuke; she pushed me to become a genin so that I would have to stay here. It's funny but in the brief time I've been here this place has become more of a home to me then anywhere else ever has."
"You aren't really a traveller that was attacked by bandits." Sasuke stated and Harry smiled.
"No, I'm not. Maybe one day you'll find out exactly who and what I am. But you are not ready yet."
"Naruto knows." Harry didn't answer since the previously mentioned shinobi had just appeared. Harry grinned at the change in the other genin's wardrobe. There wasn't a single bit of orange in his entire outfit to Sasuke and the just returned Sakura's shock.
"Hay Sakura! Sasuke. The clothes are great Harry! Thank you so much!" Harry managed to catch the blond missile and stay on his feet, barely.
"You're welcome. Don't forget to thank Iruka too, he helped me." Naruto nodded enthusiastically.
"Are you going to train with us today or just watch?" Naruto asked.
"Harry will be joining us on our mission today since he is the fourth member of Team 7." Kakashi stated as he finally arrived, but only an hour late. He shot a glare at Harry for somehow changing his clocks again. The changes were by random amounts so he couldn't figure out the pattern and simply show up late. Some days he was on time, others he was anywhere from a few minutes to one and a half hours late but never any more than that thanks too Harry's intervention. The teen smirked in return. Hey, what do you expect form the son of a Marauder?
"Yeah! Harry's on our team!!" Harry grabbed Naruto before he could jump around too much. Kakashi looked at the other two members of his team and then to Harry who shook his head slightly. Kakashi nodded and they headed off.
"How did it go?" Kakashi smiled at Iruka's question. The teacher hadn't even looked up from the papers he was grading.
"Well. They seem to have accepted him, especially Naruto." Iruka looked up and smiled.
"I really doubted Naruto would complain about his aniki being on his team." Kakashi raised an eyebrow.
"Harry's never really had a family, neither had Naruto. Is it really that surprising that Harry would take him under his wing?"
"Guess not. Looks like he's started with Sasuke too." Kakashi leant on the edge of the desk, bending down to claim a kiss and smiling as Iruka blushed slightly.
"His past is a mixture of theirs really. He's been hated and fawned over so if anyone can understand them its Harry."
"It won't be pretty when Sasuke eventually learns of Harry's relationship with Itachi though." Kakashi pointed out.
"You finished yet?" Iruka shook his head.
"Sorry, looks like I'm going to be at this most of the night." He smiled at the pout he could see behind Kakashi's mask.
"I'll be free tomorrow night?" The pout turned into a smile.
"Then I'll see you then." Kakashi raised his mask enough for a proper kiss and then vanished, leaving Iruka to finish his work in peace. The teacher sighed and sat back in his chair. Just what was he doing getting involved with Kakashi of all people. The man was a chronically late pervert of all things. He didn't even know what he looked like! Was he looking to get his heartbroken or what? But he seemed so sincere. Iruka groaned, so much for his concentration.
Harry dodged a blow and lashed out with his own only to have it dodged and to suddenly find himself staring up at the sky. He groaned quietly and decided he was too comfortable to move.
"You're improving." Harry shot his companion a glare.
"Tell that to my body, I ache all over." Itachi chuckled earning himself another glare.
"So, how was your day?" Harry shot him a look and then sat up.
"I think Sakura's mad at me after I told her to leave Sasuke alone and to pretty much grow up. Sasuke thanked me but is suspicious since I'm so secretive about my past. Naruto's just too happy that I'm part of their team now. He dragged me out for Ramen to celebrate, I've decided I hate the stuff." Itachi laughed.
"Thanks for getting her off his back even if it's only for a while. I've never envied him the hordes of girls chasing him."
"No problem, as I told Sasuke I know what its like. I think I've almost got the portkey idea worked out. I can drop it on a mission that takes us out of Konoha and then tell you where to find it that night. I'll hide it with magic so that only you can see it. I'll make it a two way so you can get back to where you were as well."
"Sounds good. When can we test it?"
"When we're given a mission. Don't think they want me wandering the countryside just yet."
"It is understandable, frustrating but understandable." Harry just snorted and Itachi pulled him into his arms. They'd trained enough for the night.
"I wish we could stay like this forever." Harry whispered softly. Itachi kissed him softly.
Chapter 14: Chapter 14
Disclaimer: Still don't own.
To any who are interested. I am hopeless at writing scenes going any further than a few kisses. So anyone who is interested can write said scenes for ch5 of Vampires Call, ch36 and 26 of Surrey Troubles, and/or ch9 of Dreams and then email them or it to me at email@example.com . I will read them and then use the ones that fit best in the stories and say they came from you. Remember to make them appropriate for ffnet and MediaMiner.
"Harry." The teen looked up from where he was nursing a few cuts courtesy of their training. From the sound of his lovers voice he was not going to like this.
"What's wrong?" Harry lay what he hoped was a comforting hand on Itachi's.
"Remember when you rescued Kisame and me?" Harry just shot him a look that said 'how could I forget that?'
"Right, dumb question."
"Itachi what is it?" Harry was really worried now.
"With how quiet Akatsuki's been we decided to go back and look around. We found..." Itachi trailed off and Harry paled.
"How many?" He asked softly. Itachi moved so that he was holding the younger shinobi.
"How many Itachi?"
"Six that we found. Harry what you did you did to protect us. It was an act of defence, not murder."
"I didn't know, I didn't mean to..."
"I know that and so does Kisame. I know you hate killing Harry but you are shinobi now. Even if you become an Academy teacher there is still no way to stop from ever being ordered to kill or having to do so to defend your students or village."
"Should I tell Tsunade?" Itachi let him change the topic, for now.
"She should be told. But after you wake up." Itachi tightened his hold on Harry, kissing him softly occasionally but letting him sit silently. He knew the young wizard needed to absorb what he ha been told.
Tsunade looked up at the young man sitting in front of her. Harry looked nervous which meant either another bombshell or that he was relaying a message from a certain missing-nin, neither reason was very good.
"So, what did you want to speak to me about."
"He told me some things last night that you should be aware of ma'am." Harry took a deep breath and Tsunade let him take his time, for now.
"They have confirmed that six members of Akatsuki are dead." He stopped but Tsunade just stared at him.
"What? What has the power to kill that many powerful ninja at once?" Harry stared at the wall.
"I do." It was said so quietly she almost didn't hear him but his words made her pale.
"I killed them. I didn't know till last night though. I just reacted, they were going to kill them, and I had to do something. I stopped their attacks, absorbed them and flung them back but more powerful. I didn't know what happened after, I woke up." Harry said stiffly, still staring at the wall. She had known the boy was powerful but this powerful? Could any of them stop him if he decided to turn against them? But then she looked at him closely and felt something within he relax. Kakashi had been correct that day, Harry was no killer. She could see the pain in his eyes at the fact that he had killed six people, even if it was to defend a loved one. Perhaps she had done the wrong thing in pushing him to become shinobi.
"You did what you had to do and in doing so have helped to protect your brother." She smiled at him, hoping to break him out of his growing depression.
"Akatsuki is after all the demon vessels, by taking out that many you will have made them weaker and Naruto safer. Think about that." Harry nodded and left.
"Do you plan to nominate your team again?" Kakashi nodded at the Hokage.
"Will that cause a problem?"
"The council of elders are not entirely sure about the Sasuke entering, he still bares the curse seal and the fact that if it weren't for Naruto he would have gone to Orochimaru makes them nervous."
"So he won't be allowed to participate?" Tsunade sighed.
"It has yet to be decided."
"They can't participate without a full team... Harry." She nodded.
"They are curious about him. They could be making such a fuss because they want to see why the boy's gotten so much attention."
"He's not ready. You saw his reaction to finding out he'd killed those six and his memories of what happened in his home."
"You may be right, then again this could help him accept it."
"Or send him over the edge."
"In the end it will be his choice, he can decide not to enter." Kakashi shook his head.
"He already knows that to enter your whole team has to. He'll do it so that Naruto can enter."
"Then I'll make sure you start getting more missions outside the village. We need to see how he'll react in an actual fight."
Harry smiled as Naruto bounced along. He felt bad for being the reason that this was the team's first mission out of the village for a while, especially with how happy being away from the stares made his little brother. His fingers moved to brush the phoenix necklace he was wearing and his smile grew. It was time to test the portkey. He would dump it in a few days and leave it under several illusions keyed to Itachi and then let him know where he'd left it.
"Glad to be out of the village?" Harry turned to Sakura and nodded. The girl hadn't said much to him since their chat about her obsession with Sasuke but he could tell she'd been thinking about it.
"Would...would you train with me Harry? Sasuke and Naruto are both stronger than me, I realise that now. And you're good but you're still new and."
"Alright." Harry said, cutting her off.
"Really." Sakura smiled and moved off. Harry just shook his head, smiling softly. He looked at Kakashi as the man moved forward to walk beside him.
"How are you doing?"
"The Hokage told me." Harry looked down and Kakashi sighed.
"You did what you had to do to protect those precious too you. Do not regret that. But you need to learn to control that so people only die when you mean for it to happen. You are shinobi now, killing is something you will have to deal with."
"What if I can't?" Harry asked quietly.
"Then you will die or someone you care about may die." The wizard nodded and Kakashi dropped back again, supposedly reading his book but in reality watching his oldest charge.
Harry dodged, blocking a blow with his own kunai. He was aware of Kakashi facing off against two of the enemy while Sasuke and Naruto were back to back, fighting well together. But where was Sakura? The four Konoha nin looked up as a female scream pierced the air. Harry didn't even stop to think as he focused his magic. He reappeared mere inches in front of Sakura, blocking the enemy shinobi. The man looked shocked for a split second before resuming his attack but it never landed as Harry held out his hand and said two of the most dreaded words in his home world.
"Avada Kevada." At such close range the man didn't have a chance. Sakura stared in shock as her attacker suddenly crumpled to the ground, dead. She looked up at Harry to see him staring at what he had done in shock.
"No." He whispered hoarsely.
"Harry?" He looked up at her and then vanished. She spun as the other three suddenly joined her.
"Sakura what happened?" Kakashi asked quickly.
"He...Harry just appeared right in front of me. He raised his hand and said something, there was a flash of green light and then." She pointed to the dead body.
"He looked like he was in shock so I called his name. He whispered no and then just vanished." Kakashi frowned, worried about Harry's reaction and whereabouts. He knew enough of the teen's abilities to know that he could be almost anywhere.
Kisame and Itachi leapt to their feet only to freeze in shock as a familiar figure suddenly appeared.
"Harry?" Itachi questioned, stepping closer. Wide green eyes met his before rolling up. He moved, catching the wizard before he could hit the ground and shared a mystified look with his partner. What had brought Harry to them?
About the Sasuke thing, I needed a way to get Harry into the exam. Don't worry Sasuke can simply take it the next time. Nothing against him or anything.
Chapter 15: Chapter 15
Disclaimer: Still not mine and sadly never will be.
Tsunade sighed and stared out her window. Team 7 had returned three days ago, minus their newest member. That meant Harry had been missing for five days since they had searched for him for two without finding anything. They had no clue where he was, the only thing they knew was that his mental state may not be the best and that worried her. She looked down at her desk only to blink in surprise. How? She checked the paper over for any traps before unfolding it and beginning to read.
Harry appeared in our camp five days ago and promptly passed out. He has yet to regain consciousness but does not appear to be injured in any way. I assure you he is perfectly safe. He has shown no signs of waking and I have been unable to reach him in our dreams. If he has not improved within four days send Kakashi to the east gate and he will be there. If he wakes before then he will return by that gate in no more than eight days.
Think what you will of us, neither of us would ever harm him. Harry has already told you this but I will say it again, I will never force him to choose between Konoha and me. I can see that he has begun thinking of the village as home, something he has never really had before.
She put the letter down and sent for Kakashi and Iruka.
Itachi gently wiped Harry's forehead with a damp cloth before moving it across his face. But still the younger man gave no sign of waking.
"Please Harry, wake up." Itachi whispered. Kisame was keeping watch out of sight, respecting their privacy. Neither of them knew what had happened to cause Harry to apparate to them and then collapse but they figured something had happened during the mission he was on. So much for his first mission out of the village. Hopefully Tsunade would accept what he had written and not send search parties to look for them. All he wanted was to see those familiar green eyes so that he would know Harry would be all right. He continued wiping Harry down and then froze, looking at Harry's hand. He put the cloth down and held his hand in his own, squeezing gently. Itachi grinned as he felt a bit of returned pressure.
"Harry can you hear me? Come on, please wake up." Harry's hand twitched in his and his lips parted in a low moan.
"That's it Harry, keep trying." Ever so slowly emerald eyes fluttered open and the first thing they saw was Itachi smiling widely.
"Itachi?" Harry croaked. Said missing-nin helped him sit up enough to sip some water.
"You would prefer Kisame?" Itachi managed to joke as he pulled Harry into his arms, holding him tightly.
"Don't ever scare me like that again." He whispered.
"What happened?" Harry asked, confused.
"Don't know. You just suddenly appeared and passed out. You've been unconscious for seven days, another two and we would have taken you back to Konoha as it is you have to be back in six, I promised Tsunade." Itachi explained as he gently ran a hand through Harry's hair.
"Sorry I scared you." Harry said softly.
"It's okay. Do you remember what happened? You were meant to be on a mission with Sasuke's team." Itachi remained silent as Harry thought about it.
"We were walking, I was thinking about where to leave the portkey for you. Sakura and I talked; I agreed to train with her. We set up camp and...we were attacked. Everything was going well and then Sakura got separated from us, we heard her scream and I apparated. There was a ninja, he was going to kill her but I got between them and I..." Harry shuddered and clutched at Itachi.
"Harry? What happened?" Itachi asked softly, still gently stroking his hair.
"I killed him." Harry whispered.
"You had no choice Harry, he would have killed Sakura if you hadn't acted." Itachi reassured but Harry shook his head.
"I didn't...I used magic." Itachi tightened his grip, suddenly realising why Harry was so upset with himself.
"The killing curse?" He asked to be sure and Harry nodded against his chest.
"Magic is what you've been trained in since childhood, its only natural to fall back on it when stressed. You used it to protect another, not out of malice." Itachi continued to reassure his younger lover until he relaxed and slowly drifted off into a natural sleep.
Kakashi and Iruka were standing outside the east entrance to Konoha, just far enough to be out of sight of anyone who cared to look out from the village. It had now been eight days since the letter had arrived and they were waiting for the missing genin to reappear. Both Shinobi stiffened as three figures suddenly appeared. The middle one of the group continued to approach them while the other two remained still. The walking figure suddenly stopped and ran back to the others, grabbing the closest and pulling him, it was definitely male, into a kiss before once again walking towards them. These actions made it pretty clear who was who, unless Harry was in the habit of kissing Kisame. The figure stepped out of the shadows and stopped just in front of them. Iruka smiled at Harry and pulled him into a loose hug. Kakashi just nodded at him, a smile hidden behind his mask. The three turned to the two men still in the shadows of the forest. Harry raised his hand, waving farewell. Kisame returned the gesture and vanished. Itachi simply stared at him before looking to Kakashi. The two men stared at each other for a while, seeming to communicate silently before Itachi nodded and vanished as well. Harry stared after them for a bit before looking towards Konoha and smiling softly.
"Are you okay?" Iruka asked, concerned for his younger friend. Harry's smile widened.
"I'm okay now. Nothing like a seven day nap." He tried to joke but the effort fell flat. Harry looked at Kakashi as the man laid a hand on his shoulder, his smile now shaky.
"The Hokage wants to see you." Harry nodded and followed them into the village.
"Harry!" Sakura and Sasuke looked up at Naruto's shout to see their teammate running at an approaching dark haired figure. Said person laughed and opened their arms, catching the hyperactive ninja in a hug. Sakura broke out into a grin and even Sasuke's expression softened at the sight of their missing team member. The two males joined them, Naruto practically hanging off Harry's arm.
"Are you alright Sakura?" Harry asked, concern shining in his green eyes. Sakura blushed slightly and nodded. Seeing the blush Harry groaned mentally. Great, last thing he needed was Sakura deciding she had a crush on him!
"Are you okay Harry? Where were you?"
"I'm okay now. I'm not sure where I ended up exactly, about three days travel from here. Woke up in a clearing a few days ago and then made my way back." Harry shrugged.
"Thank you, for saving me." Sakura said and Harry smiled.
"Isn't that what friends do?" They fell silent as Kakashi appeared and then started the training, Harry pairing with Sakura as he had promised.
"So what really happened nii-san?" Naruto asked as Harry joined him on the couch. Harry tossed him a chocolate bar before taking a bite from his own.
"I apparated straight to Itachi and Kisame, don't ask me how, and then passed out. Apparently I was out for seven days, I spent the remaining six with them once I woke up. Just training and talking."
"Just training and talking?" Naruto asked with a grin and Harry felt his face heat up a bit. Seeing that Naruto laughed. Harry threw a pillow at him, initiating an all out pillow fight that didn't end until they both collapsed, exhausted from laughter.
"I'm glad you're back." Naruto said quietly.
"You could have stayed with them and no one would have known."
"But then who would keep my little brother out of trouble?" Harry grabbed Naruto in a hug, tickling the younger teen. Harry finally stopped but didn't release Naruto from the hug.
"I'm not leaving you kid. Got it?" Naruto nodded, he didn't question how Harry had known what he was afraid of, in some ways they had had very similar times growing up. In some ways it had been worse for Harry since it had been his own family hating and beating him, not just strangers.
"When do you think you'll be able to remove Sasuke's curse seal?" Naruto suddenly asked. Harry thought about it.
"Probably in the next six months, it is more complex then the Dark Mark and I don't have a link to the maker to draw on." Naruto nodded in understanding.
"No clue how I'll explain it to him though."
"Just another of the weird things about your people that you won't talk about?"
"Considering the incantation's in Parseltongue. I think I'll knock him out first so he doesn't hear that."
"Come on, I'd love to see his face if you started hissing at him!" Harry lethargically swatted his brother.
Harry sat on the couch he'd put in his room, nervously watching the clock. He really hated waiting. Naruto was already asleep upstairs and the room was heavily warded so there was no chance of anyone walking in but he was still nervous. What if something went wrong? Harry felt a stir of magic and then he was no longer alone in the room. He threw himself at the figure and was easily caught.
"Miss me?" Itachi asked, grinning.
Chapter 16: Chapter 16
Disclaimer: Still not mine.
"Miss me?" Itachi asked, grinning. Harry laughed and simply snuggled closer.
"You have to ask?" Harry leant in for a kiss that Itachi willingly gave.
"You had no problems?"
"None. Though I can see why you don't like portkeys."
"At least you landed on your feet. It's only since your training that I've managed to do that. Kisame didn't mind you leaving him?" Harry said from his place in Itachi's arms. Itachi ran his fingers through Harry's hair and the younger man all but purred causing Itachi to grin.
"He couldn't stop grinning actually. He seems to find us cute." Itachi growled the last bit causing Harry to laugh.
"And Uchiha Itachi doesn't do cute, right?" Itachi swatted him.
"Very funny." He mock growled. Harry laughed and pulled him over to the couch.
"You're okay? No one's given you trouble over your disappearance have they?"
"No, I had a chat with Tsunade when I got back and a full medical check up to make sure nothing was wrong. She gave me a clean bill of health in case you're wondering."
"And the chat?" Itachi asked, still worried.
"Was okay. She knows I didn't realise what I was doing when I appeared in your camp and that I was hardly in condition to travel even once I was awake. Just as long as I don't make a habit out of it its fine." Harry reassured his lover.
"How long can you stay?" Itachi grinned.
"All night unless you have plans?" Harry just shot him a look.
"All night it is then."
"Have fun last night?" Harry froze and then turned to look at Naruto.
"Excuse me?" He asked, trying to keep his voice even.
"Last night with Itachi. Have a good time?" Naruto asked, the picture of innocence. Harry stared at him in complete shock.
"How?" He stammered.
"The fox sensed him. No one else would have in case you're worried. It's not like I'm going to tell anyone."
"Thanks kiddo." Harry gave him a brief hug.
"So, what's on the agenda today?"
"Kakashi-sensei cancelled training for the team. Maybe...we could do something?" Harry smiled.
"Sure, what do you want to do?" Harry's smile widened as Naruto's face lit up. He'd love to get his hands on every single person who had ever hurt the kid.
"Will you train with me? Please, please, please!" Harry laughed and nodded.
"Okay. You do realise I'm still not all that good?"
"You fought Kakashi-sensei and saved Sakura-chan! You're better than you think nii-san."
"Thanks. So, where do you want to do this?"
Harry rolled to his feet with a wince even as his magic went to work on his various wounds. They had worked out that while he was faster Naruto was the stronger and he had the fading bruises to prove it.
"You okay?" Naruto called nervously.
"Fine, you're stronger than you look."
"You're still faster than me though." Naruto pointed out as he flopped down next to Harry. The wizard shrugged and dropped back to the ground. They stared in surprise as a dark coloured blur passed them, heading into the forest.
"Hey! That was Sasuke!" Naruto jumped up and went to follow but Harry laid a restraining hand on his arm.
"Stay here, I'll go after him." He smiled down at the blond.
"You sure? If..."
"I can look after myself kiddo, don't worry." Harry took off after Sasuke while Naruto made himself comfortable.
Harry ran through the trees, tracking Sasuke via the tracking spell he'd placed on the teen a week after they'd met. Without the spell he would be having a lot more trouble keeping up. He came to a sudden stop as he saw Sasuke on the ground below, crouched with his hand clamped over the seal, eyes scrunched shut in concentration. Harry dropped silently to the ground and knelt beside him, placing a hand over the younger teens and the other around his waist to steady him.
"Keep breathing Sasuke. Focus on pushing it back. That's it, you can do it." He kept up the soothing talk even as placed a silent spell designed to help calm over the sweating teen. Slowly he began to calm and the seal receded.
"Good work." He praised quietly and Sasuke's eyes flew open in panic. He tightened his grip to keep him from fleeing.
"Easy, its okay." Sasuke stayed frozen in his arms.
"I know Sasuke." Harry told him, putting pressure on the hand that covered the curse seal. Sasuke looked up at him.
"How?" He asked quietly, still out of breath.
"Tsunade. My people had trouble with something similar. She was hoping the method we used would be able to help you." Harry shifted so that he was sitting with Sasuke held against him. He felt the teen's breathing catch as he explained.
"I've been working on it. Give me six months tops and I'll be ready to give it a try. There are several key differences and I don't want to chance making a mistake." Harry explained quietly.
"Why?" Sasuke asked, the normal coldness creeping back into his tone.
"Why what?" Harry asked even though he was pretty sure he knew what the other meant.
"Why help me?" Harry took a deep breath.
"Maybe because I can see a lot of me in you. Maybe because no on should go through what you have, what Naruto has, what I have. A friend once said I have a 'saving people thing'." Harry shrugged.
"What if I don't want saving?" Sasuke snapped.
"He offered me everything I want. The power to defeat..."
"Your brother. That's what his sort do, they offer you everything your heart desires and by the time you realise it was all lies it's too late and you're trapped. Power has to be earned Sasuke or you will never learn the responsibility for that power. You're not the only person to loose their family. My parents were killed to get to me, as were friends and those I considered family. I watched my best friend throw himself in front of an attack meant for me and there was nothing I could do. But at least you had the people here to care about you. My mother's family hated me because I was 'different'. I had no one who cared until I was eleven and even then many only pretended. Kakashi and Iruka care about you, so do your teammates. Don't let revenge consume you Sasuke." Harry fell silent, letting Sasuke think about what he'd said.
"What happened to the people who killed your parents?"
"I killed him shortly before coming here. But it wasn't for revenge. It was war and I was the only one who could stop him. I had to do it or he would have destroyed everything, I couldn't let that happen. Just like I couldn't let that man kill Sakura. Like I would fight and kill to defend any of you." Sasuke sat silently, absorbing what he'd been told.
"What set it off?" Harry eventually asked. Sasuke stared at the tree opposite them.
"It was nothing."
"Pretty big nothing. Kakashi sealed it but maybe I can do something more. Take your shirt off." Sasuke looked at him and Harry stared back, not giving an inch. Finally he complied and removed his shirt, giving Harry his first really good look at the seal.
"Try not to tense up and stay relaxed." He instructed, placing his hand over the mark and letting his magic flow. He couldn't remove it, not yet, but maybe he could strengthen Kakashi's seal. Sasuke hissed slightly in pain but Harry didn't let it distract him from his work. He eventually pulled back and nodded to himself, it was as good as it was going to get without being removed. The seal had faded so that it was barely noticeable and he could feel the magic surrounding and containing it. Unlike what Kakashi had done this did not depend on Sasuke's willpower to contain the curse seal but on the magic he had placed under the teen's skin and the magic in the very air. Unless Orochimaru showed up in person Sasuke would be safe from its influence. If he did show up they'd have to hope Harry was close enough to directly power the containment or that he had already removed it permanently.
Chapter 17: Chapter 17
Disclaimer: Still not mine!
Finally got my cast off today, yeah!!! Wow, my foot looks weird, bruised and really dry skin. Anyway, sorry about the wait!
Who should Harry fight in the exam? Vote please.
Harry smothered a laugh as he saw the looks Naruto was giving their client, not that he blamed the other teen. The girl was incredibly annoying and reminded him of Pansy Parkinson in a lot of ways. Even Sakura looked like she'd like to shove a kunai somewhere where it shouldn't go. He smiled as Kakashi caught his eye, seeing the obvious amusement in his visible eye. This was to be their last mission before the exams and Harry was relieved, not that he was expecting to participate in them. The other three wanted to so he was happy to watch and cheer them on. At least it had been an easy mission, if you ignored the girl; all they had to do was escort her to a nearby village. There wasn't even any real threat of attack for which Harry was grateful. He looked at Naruto again and smiled. Since he had moved into the house Naruto had changed a bit, sure he was still loud and full of energy but at least he dressed like a ninja now and was learning a few more attacks from the scrolls Iruka and Itachi had recommended. Okay so it took Harry sitting next to him to get him to study and actually apply himself but he was learning. It didn't hurt that Harry was learning at the same time. Itachi had agreed with him, Naruto had too few attacks in his arsenal; he couldn't always rely on the kage bunshin and rasengan. Harry had learnt early in the war that the bigger repertoire of spells you had that you were comfortable casting the better so he was using the same approach to jutsu's. Naruto's ability to learn reminded him of himself when he was younger, the teen learnt higher level jutsu's easily but had trouble with the basics.
"We should reach home by midday." Harry looked up and nodded as Kakashi crouched beside him.
"The others will be happy. I think they were all pretty close to failing the mission through strangling her."
"And you weren't?"
"Not as close, she reminded me of an old schoolmate. I think they just want to get training for the exams." They watched as Sakura hit Naruto for something the blond had said.
"What about you?" Kakashi asked in an odd tone making Harry look at him closely.
"What about me? I've been a genin for what, a month and a half? Besides, thought they were taken in teams of three."
"They are." With that Kakashi wandered off, leaving Harry more than a little confused. The Wizard shrugged; maybe Itachi could clear it up for him.
"Looks like he's hinting that you'll be taking the exam." Itachi commented when Harry fell silent.
"But how? Team 7 is complete without me, I'm only on it because the others spend time with their personal sensei every few weeks or so."
"Two possibilities. They don't want Naruto participating because of Kyuubi or they don't want Sasuke participating because of the seal."
"That's not fair. Neither of those is their fault." Itachi smiled at the face Harry pulled.
"True, but since when is life fair?"
"Good point. Want to come by tomorrow night?" Itachi smiled sadly.
"I'd love too."
"We're not in a safe area and the portkey's only for one. I can't leave Kisame until its safe. Give me a few days." Harry frowned but nodded.
"How's the training coming?"
"Pretty good. I'm getting the hang of jutsu's and Naruto is learning better control. Whoever thought Occlumency could be useful for so many things?" Harry smiled at the thought, since he'd begun teaching the mind art to Naruto his control and attention span had doubled.
"I'm going to see if Sasuke would be willing to learn once I'm done with Naruto, it could only help him with controlling the seal. Not to mention his homicidal tendencies when it comes to you." Itachi smiled, glad that Harry had taken to his little brother as well as Naruto. Sasuke could do with all the family he could get, even if he didn't know about it. He had the feeling that the next time a certain snake came for his brother he was in for one big surprise. A protective Harry was a scary sight to see, as Akatsuki had learnt the hard way. Plus he had plenty of experience fighting evil immortality seeking snakes.
"Come on, I've got a new jutsu for you." Itachi stood and offered his lover a hand up which Harry accepted. They spent several hours working on the hand seals before relaxing together under their tree before Harry slipped into a deeper sleep and Itachi woke for his watch.
Tsunade smirked slightly as she noticed how Harry stood protectively slightly behind Naruto and Sasuke. As far as she was concerned there was no longer any reason for him to be watched. While he may not be utterly loyal to Konoha he was completely loyal to those he considered friends and family and it was obvious Team 7 fit in that category, as did Iruka and the Academy students. She knew she wasn't counted, she had pushed him too much but she could accept that, it wasn't like the teen was her bodyguard.
"Welcome back." She greeted, not wanting to tell them why she'd called them in just yet. She was not looking forward to the reactions. She could tell from the way Harry focused on her that he knew something was up. Emerald eyes narrowed slightly and then flickered to Kakashi who was studiously reading his book. At least he was until the book suddenly vanished only to reappear in Harry's hand. She smirked fully at that, it was good to see someone trying to teach Kakashi manners. The younger teens could tell something was up; Naruto was fidgeting while Sasuke was looking between the three older people.
"Just tell us ma'am." Harry said calmly.
"Fine, spoil my fine. The chuunin exams are next month and as you know you need a team of three. You can see where I'm going with this right?"
"But there are four of us!" Naruto exclaimed. The blond looked wildly between his teammates until Harry placed a gentle hand on his shoulder.
"I don't see a problem, as I'm more of a fill in I won't take the exam. I wouldn't have enough missions on my record to qualify anyway." Tsunade sighed quietly and Sasuke's eyes narrowed.
"He will be taking the exam won't he? It's one of us that won't." The Uchiha stated.
"Who? Why can't they take it?" Once again Harry hushed the blond.
"Due to the events of the last exam and what almost happened at the Valley of the End it is felt that Uchiha Sasuke should not be allowed to take the exam yet. Therefore for the team to take the exam Harry will have to take his place." Tsunade told them, earning a glare from both brunettes.
"And if I decline?" Harry asked coolly.
"Then Team 7 will be unable to attend." Harry shut his eyes and Naruto squeezed his hand.
"Its okay nii-san, we can take them next time." The blond offered to everyone's surprise. Harry opened his eyes to stare at the person he considered a brother before smiling and shaking his head.
"No. This is all you've been able to talk about for weeks; I won't be the cause of you missing out. I'll participate ma'am."
"Good. I am sorry Sasuke but there are those who just don't trust you yet. I'll make sure you can take the next exam." Sasuke nodded stiffly and Harry placed a light hand on his back briefly.
"Get going then." They turned to leave.
"One second Harry." The wizard paused to wait as the others left.
"I want you to avoid magic during the exam unless you have no other choice. We don't need you gaining too much attention from certain people."
"I understand. Is that all?" Harry's voice was still cooler than usual.
"Yes." Harry nodded and left.
"I'm sorry Sasuke." Harry spoke softly as he joined the other at the bridge.
"I never even wanted to be a ninja and I kept being pushed further into it. I never planned to take the exams at all but Naruto..."
"I understand." Sasuke stated coldly.
"No, I don't think you do." The younger teen turned around angrily at the comment.
"We trust you Sasuke, your team trust you and that's all that matters. Who cares what anyone else thinks. You're Naruto's best friend and rival and he trust you with his life. Sakura does to. Kakashi is concerned about you and but he does believe in you."
"And you?" Sasuke stared at him and Harry smiled.
"You've never done anything to me, as far as I'm concerned you have a clean slate. Do anything to betray me or those I care about and I will not go easy on you. You're not a bad person and you didn't ask for that." Harry indicated the seal.
"You're a good Shinobi when you get past your superiority complex and you are a good friend wether you want to believe it or not. I know that I trust you to watch my back. People as a group are fickle; you can be a hero in their eyes one minute and a villain the next. It's when your true friends start saying it that you need to worry because they care for and know you best." Harry grasped his shoulder and then let go, continuing his walk home and leaving Sasuke to think about what he'd said.
"It's official. I'm taking the exam." Harry said softly.
"Normally I'd say congratulations but I know you don't want to. Who are you replacing?" Itachi moved slightly on the couch to get more comfortable. Harry frowned in thought; he really should put a bed down here.
"Sasuke, they don't trust him after what happened. I had a chat to him about it after and he seems okay."
"Do you know where the exam is being held? Maybe I can sneak in to watch."
"Sand apparently. Naruto said he knows the Kazekage." Harry snuggled closer.
"Gaara, he's like Naruto. They fought during the invasion at the last exams but have been sort of friends since. I think Gaara is able to relate to Naruto."
"Plausible assumption. Do you really think you can sneak in?"
"I'll find a way, don't worry about it." Itachi moved and kissed Harry softly. Harry smiled and wrapped his arms around him, eagerly returning the kiss. Kakashi had yet to ask questions about the times Harry stayed at Naruto's for the night since the two were like brothers, which made it a lot easier.
Harry stared out at the seemingly endless sand in awe. He'd never seen the desert before and already the heat was getting to him. He cast a quick cooling charm before following his team onto the sand, being careful to stay close; he really didn't want to get lost out here. They ran through the desert for hours until finally the village came into view. Kakashi called a halt on top a dune and the stared down at the village of Sand. Harry smiled as Naruto began to jump excitedly. Finally, the chuunin exams were close.
Chapter 18: Chapter 18
Disclaimer: They aren't mine.
Sorry for the wait. Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions for the exams. As you probably know from my other fics I suck at fight scenes so this chapter may skip around a bit.
Harry wished he could take a second to wipe the sweat from his face but he really didn't have the time. Lee was simply too fast for him to risk it. The English Wizard simply wasn't used this type of heat or the lack of humidity and it was slowing him down; even with the cooling charm he had cast before their match. He wished he were fighting anyone other than a fellow Leaf-nin since he wouldn't have to worry so much about doing damage but that was the luck of the drawer. At least Lee had yet to remove the weights he had heard about from his teammates, then he would really be in trouble. The only reason he had lasted this long was because his legilimency, he was using it to sense Lee's moves even if it was only a split second before he performed them. So far while he had taken some hits none had been too hard. But he knew he had to come up with some sort of strategy and fast or he was goner. Harry smiled slightly as he felt Itachi's gaze on him from the stands. He was worried about his lover being here but it was a comfort to know he was, even if it was incredibly risky.
"Do you think Harry can beat him Kakashi-sensei?" Sakura asked. She was the only one from their team to have already had their match and unfortunately she had lost but only just so there was the possibility she could still be promoted since you didn't have to win your match to do so.
"If he can find a way to negate Lee's speed then yes. If he used his bloodline I'd say the match would have been over already." Kakashi answered, for once his book wasn't in his hand as he watched the teen fight.
"Harry has a bloodline?" Sakura asked in surprise.
"Yes. But he has been told to use it only if he has no other choice and in a match against a fellow Leaf shinobi I doubt he will." Kakashi answered. He smiled as he heard Naruto cheering his nii-san on from where he was waiting for his own match. He was also keeping an eye on a civilian a few stands away that was watching Harry a little too closely for comfort. He had a feeling he knew who it was but for now he would do nothing. He had no proof the man was Itachi and he hadn't done anything to endanger anyone, yet.
Harry quickly healed his ribs even as he rolled out of the way and back to his feet. Lee was simply too fast for him to hit with a jutsu so he was left with taijutsu, something that was not his forte. Sure he could fight but nowhere near Lee's level. He could keep fighting, using his magic to heal himself and wait for Lee to tire but that would drag things out for far to long. Thanks to his inheritance and healing abilities he knew he could outlast anyone except maybe Naruto or Garra, who wasn't competing, but he really didn't want to win that way. So that meant he had to outthink Lee somehow. Harry barely dodged a kick to the head and managed to retaliate but Lee moved away to quickly. Okay so Lee was way too fast for him normally, what about using a little magic to increase his speed? At least enough so that he could land the occasional hit.
Kakashi smiled slightly as he saw Harry's speed steadily increase, so he had decided to at least enhance his speed with magic. But was that all he was going to do? Their exchanges became more even as Harry became able to block easier and even land return blows but Lee still had his weights on. Surely the young Wizard had some sort of plan? Hadn't he pretty much led the last few fights in his own world? Kakashi raised his hitae-ate and his smile widened. With the Sharingan exposed he could see the subtle genjutsu Harry had used at some point without anyone noticing. It wasn't anything special but it should help slow Lee down a bit and confuse his senses a little. He had learnt soon after meeting Harry that not even the famed eyes of the Uchiha could detect when magic was used so who knew what else Harry had done.
Harry kept his face expressionless even as he began manipulating Lee into doing exactly what he wanted him to do. Okay so messing with his head, even the small amount he was doing, wasn't very nice but it was something a shinobi would do plus he was running out of options. Just a little further and he would be ready to spring the trap. Harry smirked slightly and Lee had a split second to realise his mistake before he screamed in utter terror and collapsed shaking. Harry instantly cancelled the spell and knelt beside Lee, kunai drawn and eyes on the referee.
"Winner Potter Harry." Harry instantly put the kunai away and dug in his pouch for a few seconds. He pulled out the chocolate bar and quickly unwrapped it.
"Lee? Lee look at me." Wide eyes met his and he smiled.
"It's okay. Here, eat this and you'll feel better." Lee was shaking too badly so Harry helped him with the chocolate. It wasn't normal chocolate, even for Honeydukes. Shortly after war had truly broken out the company had brought out chocolate aimed to help with the effects of Dementors even quicker and Harry always carried some considering his reaction to the creatures.
"You'll be okay in a bit." Lee managed a shaky nod as the medics approached and continued to eat the chocolate.
"I'm sorry Lee, you're just too good for me to fight fair against." Harry was happy that his comment got a smile from the younger teen, even if it was shaky. He watched as Lee was helped from the arena before turning his attention to the medic standing beside him.
"You took some pretty hard hits, we should check you over." The man stated.
"No need, I'm fine." Harry assured him and then headed out of the arena himself.
"You were brilliant." Harry turned to see a non-descript man staring at him. He cocked his head and then smiled brightly.
"Thanks. Want to grab some food love?" The love was said softly enough that no one else would be able to hear. Harry quickly led the way back to his hotel room and then pinned the man to the door.
"Nice disguise, mind ditching it though?" He asked as he nuzzled the others neck. In a second Itachi was standing there causing Harry to smile again. Itachi smirked as Harry's stomach growled loudly.
"So the food offer was genuine?" He teased.
"Har har har. Excuse me if fighting for that long makes me hungry." Harry moved over to where he'd left food under a preservation charm but was stopped as Itachi wrapped his arms around him from behind.
"I meant what I said Harry, you were brilliant out there. You knew you couldn't beat his speed so you outthought him. If you don't make chuunin I'll be very surprised." Itachi murmured in his ear as Harry melted into his embrace.
"Thanks. I hope Lee's okay, I'll check up on him later tonight."
"What did you do to him?" Itachi asked as he released him so he could get the food.
"Remember that spell I was working on, to mimic the effects of a Dementor?" Itachi's eyes widened in surprise.
"That would explain why he screamed."
"Yeah. I cut it within seconds though and I'll slip him some Dreamless Sleep tonight and tomorrow, after that he should be okay."
"You impressed a few people with the way you helped him straight away, a lot of people would have been gloating and just stood around for the medics."
"Yeah well I am a Gryffindor."
"Who's at least half Slytherin." Itachi grinned and then they both laughed. Harry finished preparing the meal and they settled down to eat. An hour later they had both showered, changed into sleep clothes, Itachi had placed weapons in various easy to reach places and were curled up in bed together for a good nights sleep.
Harry watched as Naruto and the sand-nin tested each other, a tight grip on the rail in front of him.
"Much tighter and you'll break your hand." Harry grinned sheepishly and relaxed his grip before looking over his shoulder.
"Want me to steal it again Kakashi?" He asked mildly, smiling as the little orange book was quickly put away.
"You should be watching Naruto's fight as you would any of your other students. He's told me the way you favoured Sasuke from the start and while you've gotten better you still do it. He's not your only student. Besides, Iruka will want a blow by blow account of the fight from you later." Harry finished with a smirk. Kakashi nodded, feeling embarrassed about having his favouritism pointed out.
"Did you ever wonder why Naruto has always relied on a small handful of jutsu? It's because he was never taught properly at the Academy until Iruka became his teacher and by then the bad learning habits were ingrained. I have to sit right next to him to get him to study and his attention span isn't anything to talk about. I've been teaching him a few things to help with that and I'll do the same for Sasuke in a while. He needs the better emotional control because of that seal and his feelings for his brother. They make him too reckless when Itachi's mentioned or around. Naruto reminds me of myself sometimes, I had no problem learning the higher-level stuff but I sucked at the basics for quite a while. Didn't help that I never got to really do my summer work thanks to my loving relatives. He is hated for something he can't help like I often was whenever something didn't go the way my people wanted it to. Sasuke has the fame that I did and never wanted and for the same reason, surviving. But he is far angrier than I ever was. I never thirsted for vengeance like he does; I just wanted the killing to stop. He's already a good way on the wrong path Kakashi, one that will destroy him. Sakura has been too obsessed with Sasuke to really put effort into training although she has been making more of an effort lately. You're meant to be their teacher, the one to guide them. Instead you pushed two aside for the one you and everyone else saw as special. All that did was make things worse. But you have the chance to fix things. Sakura needs a stronger purpose to follow then trying to win Sasuke, Sasuke needs to be shown there is more to life than his quest and Naruto needs to know you care about him as a person and as a student." Harry stopped there, aware that he had been babbling but sometimes he just got so frustrated with the other man. Since taking Naruto under his wing he had taught the boy more than Kakashi had. He'd even managed a few conversations with Sasuke geared at making him realise he wasn't the only one who had seen their family die and that there was more to life than vengeance. He'd even talked to Sakura about her obsession with Sasuke. All of which Kakashi should have done years ago. Sure he liked Kakashi as a person but a reliable teacher he was not. Harry sighed tiredly and turned his full attention back to Naruto's fight in time to wince as the teen took a rather nasty hit. His wince turned to a smile, as Naruto got straight back up and attacked his opponent.
Kakashi stared at the back of Harry's head as the teen watched Naruto fight. He couldn't say anything even if he wanted too. How did Harry do it? He had only known them for a few months and yet he had seen things so much more clearly than anyone else. He hated to admit it, even to himself, but Harry was right. He had neglected his duties as their teacher from the start by focusing on Sasuke, leaving Naruto to flounder. He'd paid more attention to Sakura than the blond and had ignored how it must have hurt the boy. How could Iruka let him close when he had done that to the boy he looked to as a son or brother? He barely noticed as Naruto ended the match using a katon jutsu, something he had never taught the boy, and made his way towards them.
"Did you see nii-san?" Kakashi blinked back to the real world as Naruto's voice reached him. He smiled as he saw Harry grab the younger teen around the waist and hug him tightly before ruffling his hair.
"Of course I did. Great work kiddo." Harry smiled proudly down at the blond and received an honest smile in return. Kakashi started at the sudden realisation that it was the first true smile he had ever seen the blond give. Had the dozens of smiles he had seen over the years all been a mask? A way to hide the pain? He swallowed and then moved forward to place a hand on Naruto's shoulder.
"Well done Naruto." He praised quietly. Naruto stared at him in surprise before gifting him with a genuine of small smile.
Chapter 19: Chapter 19
Disclaimer: Still not mine.
Harry and Naruto stared at the board and then looked at each other. Neither of them had ever thought this would happen. Sure Harry had figured they may end up facing each other, but as the final match? He had never expected to last so long. Harry could feel Itachi's eyes on them and managed a wan smile. Naruto was still staring around in shock so Harry nudged his shoulder.
"Come on kiddo, we better get down there." Harry told him quietly.
"Good luck you two." They both managed smiles for Kakashi's comment and then headed down to the arena floor.
The two teens faced off as the referee looked at them, waiting to begin the match. Harry occluded his mind, locking his doubts and nervousness away behind his shields and watched as Naruto did the same, although not to the same level since he was still learning.
"No going easy on me nii-san." Naruto stated, earning a few looks from the crowd.
"Likewise kiddo." Harry responded as the match began. It appeared that Harry still held a slight speed advantage but it wasn't by much as the two clashed.
Itachi watched as his lover and Naruto fought proudly. Both teens had come a long way since they had met. He knew he could take the credit for a lot of Harry's training but not all of it. He was so proud of Harry for everything he had gone through and survived. A lot of people would have simply given up upon finding themselves going through half of what his lover had during his life but Harry had never given up and had emerged stronger. Itachi tensed ever so slightly as he felt a familiar presence behind him. He readied himself to run, he didn't want to fight here but something told him it wasn't necessary.
"You really love him, don't you?" Not exactly what he was expecting but he nodded anyway.
"More than I ever thought possible. He's never been afraid of me, even when we first met. He just...accepted me." Itachi answered Kakashi softly, not wanting to draw attention. He felt more than saw Kakashi's nod of agreement.
"You should have seen him when he learnt of Naruto's 'condition', he looked ready to knock sense into the entire village, physically if needed." Kakashi chuckled.
"I hate to admit it...but he's done more for my team than I have. He's managed to get Sakura to back off in her pursuit of Sasuke, he's taught Naruto while learning himself and he's been talking to Sasuke and helping him deal with his seal. He should be Team Seven's sensei, not me." Itachi shook his head.
"Harry admires you, even though he doesn't think much of your attitude most of the time. He couldn't teach them, he's not ready for that. Helping them is one thing. He...he's happier now than in the whole time we've known each other and it's because he doesn't have any real responsibilities. I'd love to have a few words with Tsunade about the way she pushed him into this." He could feel Kakashi staring at him, probably over how much he'd said but he didn't care. They had to know not to keep pushing Harry. He wanted Harry to be free to do what he wanted in a way he never had been before, in a way he himself had never been able to be.
"He doesn't talk much about his past, even to those of us who do know." Kakashi commented softly.
"It's painful, not just because he was ripped from there but because of the way he was used. He was their Saviour, their weapon and when he behaved in a way they didn't like..."
"They cut him down." Kakashi finished slowly, understanding more about his oldest student now and almost wishing he didn't. No wonder the kid had reacted the way he did to learning certain things about his teammates and the way Tsunade had made certain choices for him.
"He's never been free and the Hokage has once again caged him. I wouldn't blame him for hating her for that, hating Konoha and yet he doesn't. His capacity for love...he never even truly hated the man who made his life hell." Kakashi could feel Itachi's sorrow from where he was standing, just behind the younger man.
"You didn't do it, did you?"
"I thought Harry had already told you that much. But it doesn't matter; even if I could prove it do you really think I'd be allowed back? After everything?" They both winced slightly as Harry was slammed into the wall hard enough to break bones but a split second later he was up again as if nothing had happened.
"He's the only person I've seen that can keep up with Naruto's healing rate. Gaara doesn't count since he never really gets hit without a ridiculous amount of effort." Kakashi commented.
"He's gotten better at healing like that since coming here." Itachi responded quietly.
"Who do you think will win?" Kakashi asked, honestly curious.
"It depends, in some ways Harry is better prepared for this since he was thrown into a war at eleven with no training so he does have more practical experience. If it comes down to stamina it could go either way since Harry's inheritance. Pure power wise they're equal if Harry uses his magic. It'll come down to who makes a mistake first in all likelihood." Kakashi nodded in acceptance, knowing that Itachi probably knew Harry's abilities better than he did, even if he was his teacher officially.
Harry gasped in pain but forced his magic into the wound, healing it quickly. He saw the flash of guilt in Naruto's eyes and gave him a quick smile. Their fight had turned into the longest one of the exams, not that anyone was complaining. Quite the contrary actually. He'd caught a glimpse of Kakashi standing behind Itachi a while ago and had felt a moment of panic but they were simply talking. He refocused fully on Naruto and had to fight a grin. It was obvious that Naruto was enjoying the fight, even if neither of them was truly going all out, no reason to destroy the arena after all. Not to mention a lot of people would be mad if they wiped out the audience and a good portion of the surrounding village, at least. But no matter how much the spectators were enjoying themselves he needed to end this and soon, before he had to rely too heavily on his magic to continue the fight since that would raise a lot of awkward questions. He couldn't use the same trick he used on Lee, lets face it Kyuubi on a bad day was worse than a hundred Dementors and none of the other tricks he'd used in his other matches would work since Naruto knew them. So he had to come up with something and fast. Unfortunately he wasn't given that time.
Kakashi and Itachi froze as Naruto's Rasengan slammed into Harry and sent him flying to lie limply on the ground. Kakashi instinctively placed a restraining hand on Itachi's shoulder, even though he knew it would do no good if the younger man really wanted to get away. Everyone seemed to be holding their breath, to see if the older teen could shrug of that attack as easily as he had the others but he remained unmoving even as Naruto ran to his side.
Naruto dropped to the ground, hesitantly touching his nii-san, searching for his pulse even while fighting tears. He really was a monster, a demon that hurt those he cared for. He gave into the tears and collapsed on top of the one he considered his brother, praying for him to wake up.
"Please wake up nii-san, I'm sorry. Please be okay. Please..." Naruto ignored the medics as they tore him away so they could reach Harry and continued to sob even as Kakashi appeared and gathered him up. A low moan from where the medics were working had Naruto freezing in hope. Sure enough the one limp hand they could see suddenly twitched.
"Nii-san!" Naruto yelled in relief but Kakashi kept a firm grip on him.
Up in the stands Itachi felt his heart start to beat again at Naruto's relieved cry. Sure enough he could see faint movement coming from where Harry was laying. He knew that Harry's magic could heal about anything given even a split seconds chance to start so he allowed himself to relax a bit. He began to chuckle slightly as the movements became stronger and the medics fell back in shock. He smiled as Harry slowly rolled over and pushed himself up to his knees and then shakily to his feet, the entire stadium utterly silent since most had been sure he was dead a not even a minute ago.
"Nii-san!" Naruto cried again, tearing himself free of Kakashi's grip. Harry turned and gave him a shaky smile before wrapping his arms around the crying teen.
"Shh. It's okay Naruto. I'm all right." Harry was quick to assure the younger teen. He held Naruto as tightly as he could, hiding a wince as his body continued to heal the damage. Harry looked over at the referee and smiled.
"You going to call the winner or what?" He questioned loudly. The referee stared at him, surprised and Harry looked down at Naruto and then back up.
"Yes, right. Winner Uzumaki Naruto." Naruto pulled back in shock as the words registered.
"But...but you're back up."
"And if you think I want to continue you have another thought coming. I feel like I just went ten rounds with a mountain troll kiddo. You won, fair and square." Harry told him quietly and smiled as a brilliant grin slowly spread across the blonds face.
Kakashi studied Harry closely, checking for any injuries. He paused as Harry chuckled softly.
"I'm fine Kakashi. You do realise I'm probably going to get a thorough check up later tonight don't you?"
"Yes well, I am your team leader plus your flatmate. So I do have some responsibility for your health." He answered moving up to stand beside Harry at the balcony rail.
"Thanks." Harry said softly.
"Because you got up so quickly you could have continued the fight you know."
"I know. But what would have been the point? We would have kept going like that for a very long time considering our available power levels and healing abilities. Better to stop at the first 'fatal' strike." Harry shrugged.
"Besides, I don't like fighting those I consider friends or family." Kakashi nodded slightly.
"I saw you two talking." Harry said lightly but Kakashi could feel his nervousness.
"A very good henge he's using." Kakashi said and could have sworn he heard a low growl coming from the teen beside him.
"We...talked. If it helps I believe him about the massacre. He's different than he used to be and I feel safe saying that's because of you." Kakashi was nice enough not to tease him as Harry blushed lightly.
Harry relaxed into the familiar embrace, letting his lover support his weight. He smiled as he was lifted and carried over to the bed before being placed on it gently. They remained silent as Itachi slowly stripped him, searching his body for any sign of injury. Once satisfied that Harry had healed Itachi moved up to claim his lips in a gentle kiss.
"I think Kakashi was scared I was going to kill Naruto today." Itachi smiled as he spoke but Harry could see that Itachi had truly been scared by what had happened earlier. He pushed himself up enough to kiss Itachi softly.
"I think what happened scared Naruto more than anyone else. Do you know how long it took to get him to go to sleep? Kyuubi had to help me and I still had to use an entire vial of Dreamless Sleep. Hopefully he'll sleep through till morning."
"But you're okay?" Harry smiled up at is lover.
"A bit tired but otherwise fine. I promise." Harry reassured Itachi.
"Good." Itachi whispered and then they stopped talking.
Chapter 20: Chapter 20
Disclaimer: Still not mine.
No idea how they find out who made chuunin and stuff so I'm doing it how I want.
Harry placed a calming hand on Naruto's shoulder as the younger teen tried to bounce from either excitement or nerves. Sakura was a lot calmer, standing on Harry's other side although she was clutching his hand slightly. He didn't really blame either of them, he didn't care one way or another for himself but the results meant a lot to most of the people here. It had been two days since Harry and Naruto's match and the results were finally being announced. They'd be returning to Konoha this afternoon and while it would be nice to sleep in his own bed again it had also been very nice to spend every night curled up with Itachi. He could feel his lovers' eyes on him even if he couldn't see him in the audience. Harry smiled fondly at Naruto as the blonde waved at the entering Kazekage who nodded in return. The redhead pulled out a scroll and began ready the pre-prepared speech before moving on to what they were all there for, the names of those who were to be promoted. The three clapped when Neji was promoted and Naruto began moving more as the list got closer to the 'P's'. Harry had felt Sakura's disappointment at not being called and gave her hand a tight squeeze in comfort.
"Potter Harry, Konoha." Naruto let out a yell of joy and then went red with embarrassment causing Harry to chuckle before calming himself and stepping forward. He accepted the scroll with his name on it and bowed before joining the others. As they approached the end of the list he held his breath. Yes, Naruto had wanted to progress with Sasuke but at the same time the blonde really wanted to be a chuunin.
"Uzumaki Naruto, Konoha." Harry smiled at his little brother as the blonde's face went blank in shock. He coughed softly to get Naruto's attention and then motioned him forward. The teen suddenly grinned and all but bounced forward to the amusement of most present. Room was automatically made beside Harry for his brother and the dark haired teen wrapped an arm around the blonde's shoulders.
"Congratulations." He whispered and Naruto just grinned.
"We did...oops?" Harry froze at the sound of the familiar voice, his lips still firmly latched onto Itachi's left nipple. He could feel the way Itachi tensed and put his hands on his lovers' shoulders to hold him down even as he raised his head to stare at the other leaf-nin. Naruto was staring at the two older, half-naked males in shock before he suddenly went bright red and turned around to face the door.
"Sorry, really really sorry." He babbled and Harry laughed even as waved his hand, re-clothing them.
"It's okay kiddo, you can turn around now." Harry said as he sat up, making Itachi grumble before also sitting up. The twenty-one year old looked more than a little annoyed at being interrupted but he wouldn't say anything since it was Naruto.
"Could have been worse, at least it wasn't Kakashi or Sakura." Harry whispered before walking over to the still stammering blonde. He wrapped his arms around the smaller teen and began whispering to him. Naruto eventually calmed and looked over at Itachi.
"Hi?" Naruto said hesitantly. Harry threw Itachi a glare over the smaller teen's shoulder and Itachi sighed.
"Hello Naruto." Itachi greeted and Harry smiled. The wizard knew Itachi was uncomfortable around people but he wanted his family to get along. Naruto grinned and walked closer, sitting on a nearby chair. Itachi sighed; so much for the night he had planned.
"I am sorry about our last meeting, Kisame is too." Itachi said awkwardly.
"It's okay." Naruto shrugged. The three fell into a slightly uncomfortable silence.
"Congratulations on making chuunin. A step closer to your dream?" Itachi offered, earning a brilliant smile from his lover.
"Thanks!! I'm sure Sasuke will pass easily next time too. It's stupid that he wasn't allowed to come." Naruto glared at the wall.
"I'm sure he will but I understand why they decided the way they did. Sasuke was willing to turn his back on the village for power and revenge and he nearly killed you in the process. With my supposed actions that would make them nervous." Itachi explained.
"But was he really willing? I think that seal messes with the bearers mind quite a bit." Harry pointed out.
"The Dark Mark did the same unless you knew how to fight it. He's been...calmer I guess since I reinforced Kakashi's work. Either that or because Sakura's finally leaving him alone." Harry grinned as Naruto laughed.
"But you'll get rid of it soon, right nii-san?"
"Good. Then we just have to convince him Itachi's innocent."
"No!" Naruto jumped and stared at Itachi with wide eyes. The eldest Uchiha sighed and looked at Naruto sadly.
"He can't know Naruto. He can't go after the real culprit, he'd kill Sasuke."
"And you won't kill him. But he hates you Itachi."
"Naruto's right love. His hatred of you is a big part of the problem and from what I've heard is why he wanted to go to the snake. As much as you don't want him getting hurt, this lie is hurting him just as much. Without trying to kill you he could always focus more on his second goal, reviving the clan since you won't be able to."
"Why not?" Naruto questioned and then went crimson as Harry raised an eyebrow.
"Right, forget I asked." The blonde muttered, embarrassed. Itachi chuckled and Harry shot them both a fond smile.
"Well, I'm gonna go now. Have fun...er whatever." With that Naruto bolted and Harry collapsed, laughing.
"Poor Naruto." He gasped between laughs.
"You okay?" Sakura looked up at her green eyed teammate and nodded.
"You'll make it next time Sakura, you and Sasuke." Harry encouraged and she smiled.
"Thank you Harry." She answered softly, both looking ahead to watch their blonde teammate run excitedly across the sand.
"Sometimes I wish I had half his energy, I get tired just watching him!" Sakura laughed at his comment, her mood lifting. Harry grinned and let himself fall into step with their teacher.
"So what'll happen now?" Harry asked his flatmate.
"Iruka was planning to put your name down for teaching at the Academy if you want it. Apparently the kids adore you and as seen with Naruto you can teach."
"I've been teaching on and off since I was fifteen so I'm not surprised. What about Naruto?"
"He'll stay with the team unless needed for something else. You can still join us as far as I'm concerned." Harry smiled at the older man.
"Thanks." They walked in silence for a while but Kakashi could tell there was something the teen wanted to talk about.
"Naruto made a good point the other night. Sasuke believing Itachi is guilty is doing more harm than good. How do you think he'd react to the truth?" Kakashi actually froze for a split second, unnoticed by anyone other than Harry.
"He won't believe you without some rather extraordinary proof."
"Yeah, so if I tell him I'll have to tell him everything. The proofs in my memories and the only way to show him those is for him to know who and what I am." Harry said softly.
"He'll feel betrayed when he finds out about you and his brother."
"And the fact that you, Naruto, Iruka and the Hokage know as well. Yeah. But he deserves to know the truth and maybe it'll help his emotional problems." Harry shrugged.
"Personally I'll be happy if he doesn't try to chidori my arse. Why you ever taught him that I'll never understand." Kakashi shrugged, it was something he had wondered about after finding out Sasuke had used it on Naruto.
"IRUKA-SENSEI!!!!" Harry winced at Naruto's volume as the blonde tackled the teacher as they finally entered the gates of Konoha. The older man laughed and hugged Naruto warmly, looking up at the rest of them and nodding in greeting.
"How did it go?" He asked as he began to walk with them towards the Hokage tower.
"It was great!! Harry and me fought the last fight! It was the longest fight of the exams and I won." Naruto chattered. Iruka smiled broadly and offered his congratulations.
"So who advanced?" Iruka asked.
"Naruto and I did from our team. Neji also made chuunin." Harry answered him as they walked; smiling in greeting to Sasuke as the teen suddenly joined them. The other teen just nodded slightly. Harry walked beside him and moved closer to whisper.
"I need to talk to you later, alone. Meet me where I helped you." Sasuke nodded slightly, curious but willing to wait.
Harry fingered his new vest as he paced the clearing, waiting for Sasuke to show up. He had no weapons with him, not wanting Sasuke to feel threatened when he learnt of Harry's connection to his brother. It wasn't like he'd need them to restrain the teen if things went badly and he knew they would. Harry turned as the younger teen emerged from the trees and shot him a nervous smile. He sighed as that put Sasuke immediately on edge. He threw himself down on the grass and motioned for Sasuke to sit.
"Okay, do you want the good news or the sort of bad but also good news first? Forget that we'll go with the good. I can remove the Seal now."
This chapter gave me a lot of trouble.