Harry Potter vs. The Sorting Hat
Harry awoke to find himself in a very comfortable bed in a surprisingly warm and cozy stone room. It had that medieval chic quality so lacking in today’s dungeons. He also felt fuzzy. It occurred to Harry, somewhere in his addled mind, that perhaps he was under heavy pain medication of some kind.
“So, Mr. Potter is awake,” said an ornery woman. She looked down at him with an expression somewhere between annoyance and the look Jean Grey usually gave him when he had done something she disapproved of. “You have the distinct honor of being the first child to have been sent to me before he ever even boarded the train.”
Okay, that was a little strange. But Harry knew he had to get the important things out of the way first. “Where’s my mask?”
“That hideous thing? I threw it out,” the woman said. The look on Harry’s face made his reaction to disco seem like a happy expression. Harry passed out again.
== == == == ==
“Yes, exactly Professor Dumbledore, he asked for his mask,” Harry heard the woman say as he awoke for the second time. “He passed out again after I told him I had thrown it out. It was like he’d nearly died.”
“It seems he has a rather close connection to it, perhaps Poppy, it should be reconstituted for his well being,” an older voice said. Harry opened one eye slightly to see a Gandalf impersonator waving a wand at him and pressing his hand to his forehead. Harry suddenly had the impression of a crazy Professor X with all his hair follicles intact. “Odd, it’s rather like there are two people, two personas. There is Harry, and then there is another under the mask. I suppose this is what muggles refer to as a dissociative disorder, or multiple personalities.”
“I’d thank you for leaving the diagnosis to me,” Poppy said. “And Mr. Potter is awake again.” She tossed the mask back down on his chest. “There it is, mended and repaired. This is Professor Albus Dumbledore, the Headmaster. He needs to speak with you.”
“Harry, I must say it is a pleasure to see you all grown up,” the Headmaster said.
“Sorry Jessica, but we’ve never met before,” Harry said.
“er…who are you speaking to?”
“My name isn’t Jessica,” Albus Dumbledore said, more than a little confused. “Would you like a sherbet lemon?”
Harry looked him over again. Pretty much everything about him said “crazy” and that was saying a lot, considering it was coming from the Son of Deadpool ™. Now, the first thing that went through Harry’s head is particularly important to his way of thinking. First he took the professor’s first name, shortened it and added an “a”; after this, he then connected the professor’s new name to a particularly famous actress: Jessica Alba. And that was how Albus Dumbledore became Jessica Dumbledore in Harry’s head. The concept would mull about a bit before coming out in his speech, but the idea was already firmly planted. The fact that Harry seemed to be restraining himself was probably due to repeated blows to the head from one of the strongest beings on the planet. Harry contemplated all this in his little green box full of thoughts until Jessica Dumbledore shook him from his contemplations. Or maybe he had just said everything that was on his mind. Harry wasn’t sure.
“Sorry, Jean says I’m not allowed to take candy from strange men anymore,” Harry said, shaking his head. “And it’s always a good idea to do what the nice lady who can destroy star systems says.”
“I suppose you are correct,” Dumbledore said. He popped a candy into his mouth as a thought occurred to him. “’Anymore’?”
“Let’s just say it has to do with a credit card, some doom-bots, a guy with metal skin, a flying car, and a really big magnet, and leave it at that,” Harry sort-of explained.
“Very well, Harry, I’m here because you have missed the first four days of classes,” Dumbledore. “Which is rather unusual for a first year, though I suppose that does seem like you’re taking after your father in that respect.”
“Hey! Dad’s never late for an assassination unless he’s attacked by super villains!” Harry argued, but he paused a moment. "Or super heroes."
“I must admit I am not quite clear on that statement, but we shall continue on,” the headmaster said. He held up an ugly leather hat that was struggling to get away. Struggling so hard, in fact, that it was currently biting the headmaster’s arm. “This little fellow is known as the Sorting Hat. It takes a look at your core being and determines your House where you will remain for your time here. We felt that you should at least have the experience for yourself, even if you could not be at the opening ceremony.”
“He smells like Cyttorak, get me the &%#@ away from here, asshole,” the hat said, spitting out the Headmaster’s arm.
“It seems to have developed a rather poor choice of vocabulary since we first brought it here,” the headmaster said, giving the magical item a dirty look.
“Fine! I’ll sit on the kid’s head and tell his fortune, okay?” the hat said in a distinctly Brooklyn accent. It was a little creepy. Albus “Jessica” Dumbledore dutifully placed the thing on his hat, but Harry dodged quite well for a guy who just awoke from head trauma.
“Gross! What if I get lice?”
“Poppy will spell them off,” Dumbledore said, motioning to the school’s medical practitioner. With that, the hat fell on Harry’s head.‘Interesting,’
thought the sorting hat. ‘You’re crazier than I am, and that’s saying a lot, kid.’
“Why do you have a New York accent?”‘fugetaboutit kid,’
was the mental reply. Harry was plenty used to mental communication. Jean frequently used it when he had done something less than proper at the X mansion. Jean seemed to think there were things Harry wasn’t supposed to do, but Blind Alfred had never stopped him. Maybe that was because she was blind? The Sorting Hat made a mental noise to get his attention once more. ‘Kid, I’m not sitting on your head ‘cuz I like it, I’m here ‘cuz the @$$#*!& here forced me too. Now, where do we put you?’
“I didn’t even know there were choices,” Harry said. “You guys should really talk to Ford Prefect about a travel guide. Or at least Volo.”‘I can read your mind, and I still don’t get what you mean,’
the Hat said. ‘So let’s see. You’re stupidly fearless.’
“Hey! You’re stupid!”‘You’re brutally honest when you should lie through your teeth. And you lie when it won’t do you any good or the lies are obvious.’
“Some people consider that a virtue, jerk.”‘You’re corrupted by the guy who raised you and Golden Girls.’
“Corrupted? More like well educated.”‘Your grasp of reality is fleeting.’
“No, TIME is fleeting and Madness takes control.”‘You think you’re a superhero.’
“I’m not a hero, Arthur Bea Wilson’s a hero.”‘You think your dad’s a superhero.’
“He’s MY hero and that’s all that matters!”‘You think Marty Feldman is the world’s greatest actor.’
“He should have totally won Best Actor for Young Frankenstein! He was robbed, robbed I say!” ‘You think Tony Stark would look good in a dress.’
“Hey! There aren’t many people in this world that could pull off that look, but Tony totally could,” Harry protested angrily.‘Ya, sure, whatevah kid,’
the Hat mentally continued. ‘You’re practically a slave owner.’
“And what? It’s better if he’s out there robbing people?”‘You’re old man kills people for a living, why isn’t he in a fun-ball?’
“Because he wouldn’t fit!”
“Yo, Dumbledore, da kid ain’t going nowhere. Where’s he goin’? Friggen NOWHERE! He’s a friggen exchange student, @$$#*!&!” the Hat said. “He ain’t nevah gonna go wid your plans like mosta da udda ones.”
“I’m not quite sure what you mean through that accent,” Dumbledore admitted. “And what house shall he be in?”
“None a dem ya friggen moron!” The Hat scowled and glared at the headmaster. “See? Dis is what happens wid Cyttorak around. Dis is why yuh shudda waited a couple a friggen weeks before toppen him off, if ya know whad I mean.”
“No, I have no idea what you mean,” admitted the Hogwarts Headmaster. He thought a little and came up with what seemed like a brilliant idea in his head. Had he known Harry even a little, he would have understood why his plan was doomed to failure. “Why don’t we have you spend a little time with each house and see which you like best?”
Harry looked at the Headmaster for a long while and shrugged. “Oh, well. Daddy always did say ‘Home is where the Doorknobs hang.’ I’ll go with it for now.”
“Oh, we don’t have very many doorknobs here in Hogwarts,” Dumbledore said. “Mostly handles and paintings.”
“Oh, don’t worry, I brought plenty,” Harry said.
“And the occasional knocker,” Albus Dumbledore said absently.
“Considering half the population of this school is female and going through puberty, I hope you have more than ‘occasional’ knockers,” Harry said. “This magical community would by a whole lot stranger without them, and that's saying a lot."
With that Dumbledore shook his head and wandered off. ‘That boy is so like his father.”
== == == == ==
Jessica Dumbledore had told Harry that he, as the headmaster, had decided that it would be best to have Harry start with the houses in alphabetical order. Secretly, this was a plan by Dumbledore to have Harry get used to the way of life in Gryffindor and not go anywhere else. So there he was, standing in the Gryffindor sitting room with all his stuff piled up around him. He had been forced into robes against his will and then pointed in the direction of the House tower.
Harry had been given a day to settle in, allowing for a full week of missed classes with the hopes that it would give him time to finish his work. Unbeknownst to most of the Hogwarts staff, Harry Potter had a pretty bad case of the I-don’t-give-a-damns. He was there to learn magic, not to do home work
. These people clearly didn’t understand the typical male raised by a world class assassin. Strangely enough, it was a demographic that was often ignored by the educating public.
Harry went through the books he was supposed to read and tossed them about the bed. History of Magic: useless, it’s didn’t even talk about Dr. Stephen Strange, much less Fin Fang Foom! (the exclamation point was part of the name). Care of magical creatures: pretty cool. An idea had begun forming in Harry’s mind about that one. Harry scratched out the title and labeled it “Pokedex.” Transmutation: very cool, but there weren’t any spells for turning things into animals. Charms: useful and kinda cool. There was definitely a few ideas forming when he glanced through that book. Defense Against the Dark Arts: He wasn’t really a painter anyway, so what was the point? Flying: had potential, but he doubted he’d be allowed anything cool, like rocket boots. Only dorks flew on brooms. Potions: Double, double, toil and trouble. Herbology: might be useful if he ever had to fight Plant-Man. Now which class had the most potential for blowing things up?
Glancing at his watch, he went down for dinner. The moment he walked in all eyes were on him. They gaped at him. They said his name in whispers. Harry let them stare for a minute. Then he turned about face, dropped trow and mooned the lot of them.
“Is that a better view?” Harry asked them all.
“See Minerva? I told you he took after James,” Dumbledore said to McGonagall with a wide grin on his face.
“You say that like it is a good thing,” she replied. She had this sinking suspicion that the next seven years would feel much longer than they really were.