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Reflections In My Mind

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This story is No. 1 in the series "Skewed Reflections". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: Response to TTH Challenge 3389. Halloween in Sunnydale has some long-lasting consequences for a number of people.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Harry Potter > General > Alternate UniverseGreywizardFR1813,5019348,29630 Jan 0930 Jan 09Yes
Disclaimer: They all belong to JKR, Crack-Head Joss and ME. Deal with it. I have.

Time Frame: For BtVS, following Season Two, episode eighteen, 'Halloween'; for Harry Potter, begins during 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.'

Spoilers: None intended, but if you don’t know what happened up to this point, why are you reading this story?

Character Bashing: Nah. Not this time.

Feedback: Of course!

Archiving: Talk to me first, please.

Author’s Note 1: Many thanks to Bill Haden and Drake the Archr for beta-ing this story.

Author's Note 2: I have adjusted the time frames for when the series was published in the Scooby-verse timeline to make it more compatible with this idea.

As usual, “word” indicates speech, //word \\ indicates mental communication and { word } indicates a character's thoughts.

~~~

"– obvious he clearly has a concussion –"

"– looks like he's coming out of it –"

Whoa!! What the heck was going on?

Had he been body-slammed by a vampire while watching Buffy's butt – err, that is, back – again?

Everything seemed to be a little fuzzy, but then again, that was just one of the symptoms that usually accompanied a concussion from what he could remember Wills saying the last time they got around to discussing the best first aid procedures to use the next time one of them needed to avail themselves of emergency medical treatment.

And the fact that he was getting kinda used to having those types of conversation and not really thinking that they were of the weird – what with hanging around all of the local cemeteries like he'd been doing with the Buffster lately, waiting for whichever bloodsucker was due to rise so that they could stake him or her before they could find some poor, unsuspecting idiot and use them as a lunch buffet – was almost certainly something that most people would consider exceedingly weird in and of itself, he reflected to himself somewhat woozily.

Although from what he could remember, he hadn't been anywhere near a cemetery before what ever had occurred that he was waking up from. As best he could recall, he and Wills and the Buffster had been shanghaied into escorting some of the elementary school kids around the local neighborhoods for Halloween.

He definitely could remember finding an old red graduation gown with gold trim on it in Uncle Rory's attic and deciding to use that as the basis for his costume and going down to that new costume shop to get the rest of the accessories he needed.

And he also remembered that his group of kids had mostly thought it pretty cool that he was dressing up as their favorite character from that series of kids' books that that English woman had written, and they had all laughed when he had told them he'd only missed that last turn when the dragon was chasing him by *that much* and then showed them the broken broom he was using as part of his costume.

(Although, personally, he had to say that he thought that the last couple books in the series had really sucked big time, what with the extremely unrealistic way that she'd written how things had worked out for all of the characters. Never believed that Harry/Ginny thing. Harry and Hermione? Sure. Harry and Hermione AND Luna? Now THAT was a very happy male moment.)

And he also remembered – somewhat fuzzily – that things had started getting really strange shortly after they'd started taking the kids around collecting candy, when it seemed like some of the kids had somehow changed into their costumes –

But after that, everything seemed to kinda blank out until he woke up in this – dream or whatever it was he was currently experiencing.

The faintest scent of roses and honey tickled his nostrils and he immediately opened his eyes to make out the somewhat blurred image of what he definitely thought was a pair of gorgeous brown eyes framed by a rumpled – and extremely sexy-looking – mass of long brunette hair staring down at him in a mixture of concern and apprehension.

{ Man, what I wouldn't give for the chance to help get her hair that messy, } he smirked to himself somewhat fuzzily.

// Our Queen! Our Mate! We must claim Our Mate! \\

The thought shot through his mind with inarguable intensity, so he just closed his eyes again, reached up, buried his hands in that oh-so-sexy mess of brown curls and pulled those tempting lips attached to the hair down to him and locked his lips with hers.

// We must claim Our Mate before others can claim Her! \\

{ Oh shut up, will you?! I'm doing the best I can, } he sent back irritably in response to the previous thought.

She tried to struggle and pull away for the first couple seconds, but when he continued to refuse to release her lips, she quickly stopped struggling and instead began responding to his effort with the same fire and intensity he had shown her initially.

"– name of Merlin do you think you're doing –"

"– insist you let her go right now –"

"PAY UP!"

" – told you that the insufferable little wretch constantly ignores his betters –"

He could catch snatches of various conversations around him going on around them, but at the moment he really didn't care, so he let them continue their jabbering until the two of them mutually decided to release each other's lips.

Opening his eyes again, he saw a blurry, flushed and confused, but nonetheless hesitantly smiling face staring down at him, the chocolate-brown eyes focused on him full of curiosity and wonder, and he smiled back up at her as he reached up and traced those oh-so-delicious lips he'd just tasted with his finger.

"Mr. Potter, what in the world did you think you were just doing with Miss Granger?" he heard Madame Pomfrey demanding in a clearly outraged and indignant voice.

"Claiming my Queen," he replied as he smiled up at the beautiful brunette and eliciting a brilliant smile from her, before several extremely confusing and apparently contradictory facts all simultaneously slammed into his brain, demanding his immediate attention.

Where the hell was he, he wondered as he snapped up into a sitting position and looked around, since from what he could fuzzily make out of the room around him, this was most definitely not the Sunnydale ER department!

And what the hell was Madame Pomfrey doing here in Sunnydale, since she was nothing but a fictional character in a series of kids' books?

And how in the hell could he be kissing Hermione Granger, since she was yet another fictional character out of that same series of books Madame Pomfrey had first been introduced in?

Not that he was complaining about kissing Hermione, mind you!!

Oh no! He wasn't complaining about that in the least, because kissing Hermione had turned out to be even better than he'd ever imagined it could be!

And why the frakin' hell was someone addressing him as 'Mr. Potter'?

Any further thought he might have given the situation was curtailed as he heard a voice speaking to him again – only this one was different than the first one he'd heard just a moment ago.

// I don't know what it was you just did, you young fool, \\ he heard the second voice assert in a pompous tone of voice that reminded him more than a little of that egotistical twit, Lockhart, // but I can't allow you the opportunity to repeat whatever that was, since it might imperil my continued existence. It's clear that it's time for me to take over this body! \\

// No! \\ he heard the first voice snarling from somewhere off to the side. // *I* am the Alpha!! *I* lead! \\

// I don't know what you are, creature, but this body will be MINE! \\ he then heard the second voice declare, a moment before his head suddenly seemed to explode and he let out a piercing scream of anguish before abruptly dropping back onto the bed, clutching at his forehead.

The world around him blurred in a confusing swirl of color and special effects that Industrial Light and Magic would have envied before abruptly reforming into what resembled a desert plain with a variety of objects randomly scattered across its seemingly endless expanse.

Two other beings were also present – one of them a semi-shadowy figure dressed in a hooded brown wizard's robe and holding a wand, while the other resembled a medium-sized dog-like creature with brightly glowing, almost luminescent green eyes and a mouth filled with very sharp-looking teeth.

// Die, Potter, you obnoxious little bastard! Avada – \\ he heard the robed figure intoned as it began raising its wand in his direction and he dove to one side behind a large half-opened armoire, its contents haphazardly spread on the ground in front of it, in an effort to avoid the death spell being cast, an instant before he heard the voice unexpectedly shift into a pain-filled scream.

Looking around the side of the armoire, he saw the dog-creature had its jaws clamped around the wrist of the hand holding the wand and the wizard was beating at the creature with its free hand as he cursed it in a variety of languages he didn't recognize.

As he shifted his position by the cabinet, trying to decide whether to run over and help the creature against the wizard or wait and see how seriously it could damage the figure who'd clearly been intending to kill him, he brushed against a scarlet and gold-trimmed robe lying on the ground atop a broom and suddenly a series of memories filled his mind.

His name was Harry Potter and he was a wizard, and he remembered delighting in the freedom he'd found available to him with his Firebolt as he soared majestically above the emerald green landscape below.

He was also a member of a relatively small group of people who could use magic to influence the world around him, and he was a student at Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft, just as his parents had been when they had been his age.

As he stumbled with surprise and brushed against the other pieces of clothing strewn across the ground around him, more and more previously blank sections of his memories returned to him: glimpses of his classes, recollections of time shared in the Gryffindor common room and memories of being persecuted or shunned by the majority of his classmates for things beyond his control.

As his hand brushed against a tan tee-shirt, a pair of jeans and a black leather jacket that lay nearby, however, an entirely different set of memories filled his mind – memories of a youth named Alexander Lavelle Harris, who was a friend and ally of a young woman who fought demons and other evils that hid in the darkness of the night.

He remembered fighting an evil witch who had attempted to steal her daughter's body and of nearly dying at the hands of a mummy who drained the life from people; of being possessed by an animal spirit, of dusting vampires and destroying a giant insect that could transform itself into a beautiful woman; of helping to close a fissure leading to a dream dimension which had inadvertently been opened by a young boy beaten unconscious by his sports coach, and of helping to fight off dozens of other menaces that threatened the world he lived in.

The memory of verbally sparing with a drop-dead-gorgeous brunette made him feel oddly shortchanged that his own school rival was only Draco Malfoy.

He remembered pretty much everything the dark-haired youth had experienced, up to the point earlier this evening when he had dressed up in a costume modeled after a fictional character named Harry Potter, and that was where the additional memories stopped.

He had no idea what type of force could have been responsible for transforming the young man named Xander Harris into himself, Harry Potter, earlier that evening, and, most likely, now he would never know.

But the memories that he, Harry Potter, had gained as a result of that transformation were of incalculable worth, since they included memories of what this woman, Rowling, had written had occurred to him and his friends, as well as the rest of the Wizarding World, over the course of the next four years. And since most of the major events in his life so far had paralleled those of the books, anything that gave him even a faint idea of what might be coming down the pike was something to be devoutly grateful for.

Because he was going to make damned certain that nothing along the lines of what had happened in the books had even the slightest chance of happening here, if he had anything at all to say about it.

Especially to Cedric, Sirius, Remus and Tonks.

Glancing around at his environment, Harry recalled parts of the information Xander Harris had researched after experiencing the Primal Spirit possession, and spent a moment deciding how best to utilize his newly-gained knowledge.

As he rose up and headed towards the image that, thanks to his Xander Harris memories, he now recognized as the horcrux that Tom Riddle had unintentionally embedded in him when he'd attempted to murder him as a child, Harry concentrated as he reached into his robe's pocket and then pulled his hand out, his mind's representation of the Sword of Gryffindor firmly in his grip.

"Okay, Alpha, you can let him go now," he called out to the dog-creature as he reached the still struggling pair.

"I can take care of what's left of this wanker," he said confidently as he effortlessly swung the Sword around, the blade slicing through Riddle's avatar's body multiple times as easily as one of those Ginsu knives cut through a soda can in all of the commercials Xander had watched on late-night cable shows.

Ignoring Riddle's loudly screaming head as it dropped to the ground to lie helplessly among the various other pieces of his pseudo-body, Harry turned to face the dog-like creature which was currently sitting off to the side and intently watching his every move.

"I can see this working out either of two ways, little buddy," he said calmly as he looked the Primal Spirit's symbolic representation. "The first way is that we fight to see who'll win in a battle of wills over who controls this body – something you'll probably lose, since I now know everything Xander Harris has ever learned about how to control this mindscape we're now in," he noted parenthetically.

"But you are not completely assured of victory, cub," Alpha pointed out as he sat and stared up impassively at his potential opponent. "All it would take is one small mistake on your part and I could easily wrest control from you.

"Which, if you do possess the knowledge you claim, is something you already know," he continued. "What is the other option you say we have open to us?"

"We merge," Harry replied. "We join together and form something far greater than either of us could be if we chose to remain separate.

"Something I have to admit is more than just a little tempting, when you consider all the shit I've had to put up with over the past few years," he added reflectively.

With the access he had to all of the cub's memories, Alpha could easily see the truth of the young one's statement, and it took only a fraction of a moment for him to consider and make his decision.

"Agreed."

The two figures sedately approached each other and as they touched, the air around them momentarily shimmered. Both figures seemed to blink out of existence for a brief instant before a Harry Potter suddenly reappeared, although this incarnation's eyes now glowed with an almost searing emerald brilliance as he surveyed his surroundings.

"Don't worry, Tom," he said as his gaze finally fastened on the still screaming and cursing head, which abruptly ceased its protests as it caught sight of Harry's expression. "I haven't forgotten about you.

"There's something about mindscapes and mental battles you seem to have forgotten, Tom," he said as he gazed at his enemy with an inscrutable expression.

"Intruders are usually at a great disadvantage when they enter another's mind, since the 'home field advantage,' so to speak, belongs to the mind you're entering, if they have any real idea of what they can do," he reminded his enemy.

"And thanks to what happened earlier today, now I know *exactly* what I can do here," he announced, baring his teeth in an extremely feral smile.

Dropping to one knee next to Riddle's now limbless torso, he reached down and casually shoved his hand into the other wizard's chest and ripped out his heart as he continued his mini-soliloquy.

"Did you know that many ancient belief systems taught that a warrior could incorporate an opponent's power into themselves by eating parts of their opponent's body?" he asked as he lifted the still-beating heart and stared at it speculatively for a moment, ignoring Riddle's frantic screams of protest.

Taking a big bite out of the pulsating organ, just as though it were an apple, Harry took a few chews and then swallowed, before turning to a shocked and traumatized Riddle and saying, "Hmm. Kinda tastes like chicken.

"But it could definitely use some ketchup, and a little salt and pepper, too," he smirked before popping the rest of the heart in his mouth.

As he swallowed the last bite, a noticeable glow radiated from him for a moment before fading again.

"Those belief systems I mentioned usually said that a warrior's power resided in their heart, and their skills and knowledge in their brain," Harry noted parenthetically as he again addressed Riddle.

"They were right about the power," he commented as he stretched his hand towards Riddle's head, enjoying the horrified expression on his enemy's face as he listened to Harry's words.

"Let's see if they were right abut the rest of it, too."

~~~

The Astronomy Tower
Several hours later


It had taken a fair amount of arguing with Madame Pomfrey and an even greater deal more with the manipulative old fart, but he had finally convinced them that he was sufficiently recovered from his little mishap earlier this afternoon that he could be released from the infirmary and return to his normal routine – such as it was, he half-grinned to himself.

{ I have to admit, the enhanced senses alone that came with the upgrade package would make pretty much anyone smile, } he thought to him with a small grin as he picked up the faint sound of footsteps ascending the steps.

{ And the augmented healing factor is nice to have, too, } he smirked as he remembered Madame Pomfrey's shocked expression when her diagnostic spell indicated that he was fully recovered from his little mishap with the wall earlier that day.

{ When you add that stuff to the power boost and the other benefits I got, I'm surprised that Tom never even looked into the possibility of merging with a Primal, } he thought to himself.

"Harry?" he heard Hermione softly calling his name as she hesitantly stepped out onto the open, unroofed section of the tower. "Where are you?"

{ She must have checked with the Twins and used the Map to find out where I was, } Harry realized as he caught the underlying note of concern in her voice.

"I'm over here, beautiful lady," he answered her, and his enhanced night vision allowed him to catch the surprised, but nonetheless quite pleased, expression on her face upon hearing his response.

He could tell by her hesitant tread that the gorgeous brunette genius approaching him was filled with a multitude of questions, and his smile grew even wider as he considered the various ways he had available to him to reassure her as to the sincerity of the feelings about her that he'd expressed earlier.

And a few days from now, once things had settled down a bit and he had resolved some of the more pressing issues that concerned him here at the school, he'd have to arrange for some personal tutoring from 'Professor Moody,' so that the two of them would have the privacy he'd need when they began 'discussing' several of the more significant issues that he felt he needed more information about.

Yes, that was definitely the best way to handle things. After all, if the ersatz professor did know with any certainty where Riddle and Wormtail were currently hiding, the way he had in that book Xander Harris had read, it would make it that much easier for him to deal with the arrogant, murdering bastard now, rather than have to wait 'til the end of the school year and the Third Task.

Doing it that way, Cedric would stay alive, and that grotesque, obscene little caricature of humanity that Riddle was currently stuck in could be erased from existence with a minimal amount of effort.

Harry mentally licked his lips as he took a moment to consider just how much more power he'd probably be gaining from *this* version of Riddle, as opposed to the horcrux he'd consumed.

He'd definitely have to remember to bring along some duck sauce when he went hunting for Ol' Tommy-Boy.


FIN

The End

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