Xander did as asked and soon felt as if he was being sucked though a straw and landed inside a large office, before he threw up. This was magicked away. But when he looked up, he found his father on the end of someone's wand.
“Regulus Black.” Sneered Severus, his face angry. “I heard you had been on the receiving end of an Avada Kadava.”
“Then your sources were wrong, I merely staged my death.” Regulus said calmly.
“That could be remedied.” Severus sneered again. But soon found himself at a loss for words as he was pushed roughly aside.
“Stay away from my dad you cretin!” Xander yelled glaring at the tower of a man, who stood far taller then either himself or his father.
“Severus meet my son, Alexander.” Regulus said smugly at the aghast man.
“Come now boys, can we all play nicely.” Dumbledore smiled at the three other occupants of the room. The said three looked slightly abashed and took seats in the three chairs that faced the headmaster's desk.
When all were settled, and in Xander's case happily munching away on Sherbet Lemons the headmaster spoke.
“Now Minnie will be filled in soon enough but I decided to have Severus here because of the chanced that Alex will end up in his house.” Dumbledore leaned back in his chair, a cup of tea in his left hand. “As I have decided that Professor Quirrell is unfit to teach within the wall of Hogwarts, Regulus will be taking over that position.”
“Professor please! He is a known Death Eater!” Severus snapped in a harsh tone.
“Well let us see, would you lift your sleeve my boy?” Dumbledore smiled kindly. When Regulus lifted his sleeve showing nothing but scarred skin the old wizard smiled. “Ah, well since there is no dark mark, and I would know if it were just concealed, he will be instated as Professor Black.”
To say the least Severus looked like the beginnings of a Mount Saint Helen's eruption. But he sat silently glaring at everything. But Xander was paying little attention to him because he was just then realizing that he still had the magic concealing his real self. But he thought that it could wait.
“Now onto young Mister Alex. Well my boy, since you are coming earlier then most. The previous school year is still going on we will not put you in the dorms until you have caught up with your peers.”
“And how, Headmaster do you think this boy will learn everything up to fourth year level in time for next year?” Severus sneered.
“Well I was thinking of doing inception and having him learn through absorption. It is risky but with the right teachers it should be easy.” Dumbledore smiled happily a twinkle raging in his eye.
“I will agree to this.” Regulus spoke evenly and looked at Xander. “Now son, this mean you will be, let's say in a coma for about five days. A day for each year. But inside you mind one of your professors will be teaching you in slowed time. It will be a lot of work, but it is the quickest way to get the information into your head.”
“Yes, yes and when that inception is done you will be woken up, then trained with your wand. Because although you have all the skills in your head you will be trained for at least two months after and tested. Then the absorption part of your training will be done.” Dumbledore smiled gleefully.
“I'll do it. But um, Professor Dumbledore when do I get sorted? My dad seemed really psyched about that.” Xander smiled happily up at Dumbledore.
“Oh well! We can do that now!” The elderly man stood from behind his desk and grabbed a ratty old hat. “Now Alex this is the sorting hat. It will place you in one of the four houses, which your father has told you all about I'm sure.”
“Yep!” Xander smiled happily while he nodded vigorously. This caused Dumbledore to chuckle as he walked over to the young boy and placed that hat on his head.
“Oh, a Black I haven't seem one of your blood since your father. But you are hard to place, not unlike your uncle I see, but loyal. Still there is a mind that is up to the task of learning, and plenty of wonder and curiosity. Where to put you, you are quite a friend so it better be, HUFFLEPUFF!”
Xander grinned and looked around at the people who were now staring at him in silence. Severus was smirking evilly and his father looked confused while Dumbledore just smiled.
“What? What's wrong?” Xander asked looking around.
Severus snorted causing Xander to turn and glare at him. “Don't laugh at me.” It was said simply and with force. Severus looked at him and opened his mouth to retort.
“I wouldn't Severus,” Dumbledore said still smiling. “he has been fighting by the slayer's side.”
That statement caused Severus to sputter and stare at the youngest man in the room in shock. Xander on the other hand felt very uncomfortable with the whole being stared at so he turned away from the man's piercing gaze.
“What's so bad about being a Hufflepuff?” Xander looked between his father and Dumbledore in question.
“Nothing my boy! They are loyal, friendly and smart.” Dumbledore smiled.
“So why did he laugh?” Xander asked motioning to Severus.
“Well son, Hufflepuff was the least expected house for you. In all of the Black family history we've never had a single Hufflepuff.” Regulus shrugged and smiled. “But I'm glad your happy with your house.”
“So Alex, if you were to be coming in this year as a normal student. You would be a forth year, though we send letter out at age eleven, however your birthday is in the middle of the year so you are one of the older of your classmates.” Dumbledore nodded to himself. “Now we must set up a room outside of the dorms for your inception to begin. I think the private room in the infirmary would do nicely.” When he heard no objection the headmaster smiled and stood. “Well I guess we should get some food into your stomach Alex, before this begins. As we should start as soon as possible. I will begin by teaching you all the transfiguration for the four years.”
“Albus,” Regulus began. “I think he should learn other skills such as Occulemcy and Legimens” The older man nodded his understanding.
“I will teach him Occulemcy and Severus will you teach him Legimens?” When all he got was a grumble from the dark cloaked man the headmaster chuckled. “Now food, oh Wimble!”
With a pop, a small creature appeared and Xander sat very still at the sight. He knew for sure if Buffy was here, some slayage would be going on but everyone else seemed quite calm. Chancing a glance at his father, he found the older man attempting to keep a straight face. But soon the creature was gone and Xander looked fully at his father who now seemed to have his laughter under control.
“What was that?” Xander squawked.
“That was a house elf.” Snapped Severus.
“Whoa, they are ten times weirder then anything I saw on the Hellmouth. Well not really but it still freaked me out. I mean there are some scary...” Xander soon stopped rambling when he found a hand over his mouth.
“Babbling, son.” was all the elder Black had to say in excuse. When the younger nodded, the hand was removed and Xander blushed deeply.
Soon a whole gaggle of House Elves popped in carrying trays of food. Xander sat quietly and tried his darnedest to not poke one of them. But soon his eyes shifted to the over flowing platters and his stomach gave a beastly growl.
When all four occupants of the room were full and the atmosphere was happier, not including Severus of course, Dumbledore made a fire call. Taking a pinch of green powder, he spoke softly into the pulsing green flames. Soon someone's head popped into the flickering emerald flames.
“Yes Albus, what can I help you with?” The woman had a nice motherly face and a charming smile. He guessed that this was Poppy, the nurse for the school judging by the hat she had on her head.
“Good Afternoon Poppy, I need you to prepare the private infirmary room.” The elderly man smiled.
“Oh dear! What has happened?” The woman looked nervous and glanced around the room. “Is the boy alright?” she said looking Xander up and down for obvious injury.
“Yes, yes Poppy we are just conducting an inception. See this boy is four years behind, and needs to catch up with his peers.” The woman smiled happily then and nodded, until.
“Merlin's Beard is that who I think it is?” Poppy almost yelled.
“Hello Madame Pomphrey!” Chirped Regulus happily.
Just then, the fireplace flared and the woman was in the room with her hands placed firmly on her hips.
“Just what do you think you were doing! I was worried sick, when Albus told me you were alive I wanted to find you and hex some sense into you!” Then she enveloped Regulus in a motherly hug.
“I didn't know you wanted to hear anything.” Regulus said awkwardly.
“Well of course I did! You were my assistant in the infirmary for four years!” She said sternly. “And look at you!” She turned on Xander and hugged him tight. “Aren't you just a heart breaker!”
“Oh that reminds me.” Regulus said and waved his wand revealing Xander's true form.
“Oh dear, now look at you even more handsome! Almost a spitting image of your father!” Stepping back Poppy suddenly looked a little embarrassed, she fixed her hat, which was crooked and cleared her throat. “I'll be leaving to fix up that room.” then she stepped back into the fireplace and disappeared.
“Well I will schedule the professors to come in and teach you Alex. Either your father or I will join them initially but leave soon after. If anyone attempts to enter and we are not present, think of something that will scare him or her or keep him or her out. Alright?” Dumbledore said looking serious for the first time.
“Yes, I understand.” Xander nodded.
“Well then, let us make our way to the infirmary.” The eldest man concluded.
“I suspect I am not needed for this part Professor.” Came Severus' drawl, he was quite angry. He hadn't been needed for any of the proceedings it had been a waste.
“Oh Severus, sorry of wasting your time my boy!” Dumbledore smiled happily.
Severus turned and addressed the two other occupants beside himself and the Headmaster. “Good Day.” It was clipped and angry. But his expression faltered when he looked fully at Xander for the first time. But he soon was leaving in a billow of black robes.
“My, he sure is the flashy sort.” Xander chirped happily.
“He isn't the most pleasant person.” Regulus said simply.
“Ah, well lets get to the infirmary. Need to get young Mr.Black settled in.” Dumbledore sounded very excited and if the bounce in his step wasn't proof Xander didn't know what was.
“So, I'll be learning four years of stuff, then that means four days in a coma?” Xander said getting nervous as they headed down a spinning staircase.
“Well five, we're going to teach you some other things. Such as Occulemcy and Legimens, also I thought I'd help you learn Hogwarts, A History, and other such things to help you cope with our society. So this will take another day.” Dumbledore said happily, as they reached two large doors that stood ajar.
When they entered, Xander knew automatically that this was a hospital, so he almost immediately wanted to leave. The beds lined the walls were neatly made aside from the few which were occupied by a couple moaning students. But they walked by the neatly made beds and into a door at the far end of the room. Madame Pomphrey came out of that very door and smiled slightly at the sight of the group moving towards her.
“I've got everything set up, he'll be magically fed and given water, along with other things.” Pomphrey smiled happily. “You are in for a grand journey young man.” She opened the door and aloud them to enter.
The room was beautiful to Xander, tall sloping ceiling and large windows, some stain glass and others not. Candles floated about, flickering their light around the slowly dimming room. There was a bed, sitting centered in the room that looked very well furnished. The golden comforter glittered in the light.
“This is a bit much, since I'm only spending five days here.” Xander said looking at the adults.
“No, no not at all. This will be your room until next year when you enter the dorms.” Dumbledore smiled happily.
“Oh” Xander said simply sounding less than enthused at living in the hospital of the huge castle.
“Well not time like the present!” The eldest made smiled happily before transfiguring Xander's clothes into pajamas. “Can't have you sleeping in such formal wear.” He said happily and motioned for Xander to get into the bed.
Xander did so awkwardly attempting not to look like a complete idiot as he slipped under the covers. Though it felt strange to be getting in bed while his father smiled happily at him, it was sort of unnerving.
“Ah now take this potion.” Dumbledore said pulling a vial of silver liquid out of his robe's sleeve. “It will put you in the right trance like state for the process, while also putting you in a stasis.” The elder man looked practically giddy with excitement as Xander took the vial and swallowed it's content.
Slowly Xander felt his eyes grow heavy and his body tingle and then go slightly numb before he lost all awareness of his physical body.
Xander shot up and took in his surroundings. He was in the library at Sunnydale High, and he thought that it had all been a dream and he had been knocked out by some beast attempting to kill Buffy again. He felt deflated and sad, all of it was a dream and he wished to slip again into unconsciousness.
Then the Librarian's office door swung open and out walked Dumbledore looking quite happy. He strode to where Xander sat on the floor.
“Well it seems that your mind scape has the right intentions in mind. A library is a great place for learning.” Then he caught slight of the bookshelf where Giles kept his books and read some of the titles slowly. “So this is where the slayer and watcher meet?” Dumbledore asked simply.
Xander nodded and looked around nervously. Before Dumbledore clapped his hands and flourished a glowing rod, which had to be his wand.
“Now first we will make shelves for the information which you will attain here. We will make seven of the shelves up here into things for schoolwork. This is important for Occulemcy, having a organized mind but we will go through the memories and other such things later.” With a simple flick of his wand, Dumbledore got rid of some of the other invisible books and emptied seven shelves on the upper level.
“Now my boy, I will teach you the first four years in transfiguration.”
The lessons were fun but by the time Dumbledore left, Professor Vector had come to teach him Arithmancy, then one after another, he began learning core subjects, but now Xander sat in one of the chairs in his mind scape staring off in a trance. He was excited to try the things outside in the real world since visualization is important for it Xander seemed pretty confident at being about to transfigure a match into a needle. Charms, he thought would be at least interesting. The only thing thus far that had thrown him off was Divination.
Slumping back, he looked around the library, wondering if this was all he would be doing for what seemed like forever. To Xander it felt like he had been there for a year or something equally as long. But supposedly, only a single day had passed outside his head, and he had learned from four different people. So now, he had to face the inevitable boredom that came with sitting at a table with nothing to do.
But before he could let loose another monstrous sigh, his father came walking out of the office with a stout woman, who was introduced as Professor Sprout.
In the real world, Regulus opened his eyes as he left Sprout to get introduced to Xander, who would be in her house the following year. It made him happy to be in his own world again. But he had a trail to attend about his status as a Death Eater. The minister was shooting to get him put in Azkaban as quickly as possible. But he was confident that his lack of dark mark would save him, that and with the skin replacement potion Severus had brewed, he had almost no scarring. So he stood, dressed in his best robes and looked at Dumbledore whose eyes didn't twinkle even slightly.
They slowly walked out of the castle and to the apparating spot to get to the ministry. When they showed up whispers followed the two all of the way down to the Department of Mysteries. Regulus kept his face school into a cold stare that made many back away from him. As he entered the courtroom, his heart fluttered uneasily. But he wouldn't show any fear to the people standing around him.
Sitting in the chair, which wrapped him in chains, he stared at the Minister expectantly. The fat man, in the bowler hat looked at him with a sneer. “Regulus Arcturus Black, you have been claimed as a Death Eater, what is your plea?”
“Not guilty.” He said simply and sat still.
“Your proof?” Fudge sneered.
“I lack the dark mark.” Regulus said with a smirk.
The man nodded to two men who revealed both of his bare arms while casting revealing charms in quick succession. When nothing appeared both men nodded to the minister who was turning purple with rage. The low murmur, which had grown in the room at the revelation, was silenced as Fudge brought his gavel down with a slam.
“Case dismissed.” he said in a tight voice. He gave a glance over to a woman who looked disturbingly toad like who was glaring at Regulus with her beady black eyes. The slender man knew that these two were sure to cause trouble in the future. But he was sure that he and his son would be prepared for anything that would be thrown at them.
As Regulus walked out of the elevator towards the apparating point, a shine of bleach blond hair caught his eye. Turning to look he smirked evilly at Lucius Malfoy who stared at him in disbelief. Certainly, after hitting someone with every single one of the unforgivable seeing him or her walking around happily alive, one would be completely shocked.
Smirking darkly, Regulus walked beside Dumbledore happy that everything had gone as planed. His next goal was to meet with his brother and speak to him, he needed to figure out what had happened the day Peter Pettigrew had died.
Turning to face the crowd in the ministry Regulus caught eyes with Lucius again before disappearing with a crack and landing outside of Hogwarts. He sighed in relief, and began to stride up to the massive structure in front of him, knowing that Dumbledore had most likely apparated to his office. Regulus stretched and judge by the sun that it was well past five. So he decided that he would check on Alex before heading to the kitchens to get a meal. With a flick of his wand, he was in jeans and a simple green polo.
Striding into the hospital wing, he found Dumbledore and Poppy around a single bed speaking in whispers. Curiosity peaked he walked over and looked at the child on the bed. A young Harry Potter lay there, breathing evenly apparently unharmed. Dumbledore caught his eye and he gave the elder man a look that said they would speak about it later. Then he continued on his way to the private room.
Entering the room he found Sprout just standing up looking exhausted and Sinistra waiting to teach his son, but he first intended to give the woman a serious talk. He knew she flirted helplessly with students and he intended to keep her mind focused on teaching not seducing. But when he entered the room she seemed to pale beyond anything he thought physically possible.
“Are you ready?” He said icily before he took her arm and placed his ring finger on his son's forehead.
When they were finally standing in the Library that was his son's mindscape he opened the office door and stepped out.
“Hello Alex.” He said clearly for the boy to hear.
“Hey dad.” Xander said from where he was laying on the table head dangling off. “How do you guys get the textbooks in here? I mean that is just weird.”
“They are also absorbed, a Professor holds it and it is absorbed into your mind with their consciousness.”
“So I'm getting all the information in this book without even trying to read it, because you know I have dyslexia.”
Regulus nodded and smiled happily for a second before turning. “Oh, well this is Professor Sinistra, she will be teaching you astronomy.” When his son had gotten off of the table smiled and the Professor before waving at his father who left through the office door.
Snapping awake Regulus checked the room nervously and the stood and gazed at his son. The boy's other father would die if he knew about him, but Regulus didn't know how to approach the sensitive subject. They had left on less that good terms, and believing he was dead for so long had to have hurt even more.
Sighing, he moved Sinistra so she wouldn't have a neck cramp when she woke up. Then he walked out of the room with the intent of finding a way to cure his son's dyslexia. His first thought was to go to Snape, that man would most likely have a cure. But after giving Regulus the potion for the scarring that afternoon he had, it seemed to rip Regulus' head off.
“Then I guess the library is my best choice.” Regulus said a tone of sadness in his voice. He enjoyed the other man's company, he had of course helped Regulus find the locket. But he was still worried if the potion had harmed Alex.
Sighing he approached the Library and walked in and greeted Irma with a nod before continuing on into the library. Slowly he pulled books about potions off of the shelf and began to search. He was not well versed in potions so he knew it might take some time.
After an hour of searching he was getting impatient, one trait that was un-Slytherin of him. He snapped a book shut and got a glare from Irma, which he shrugged off.
“Surely, it would be more officiate to simply ask me your question.” Came a cold drawl from his left, causing Regulus to whip his head around to spot Severus sitting at a large table surrounded by his own books.
“You seemed quite perturbed after you gave me the potion I required.” Regulus said simply.
“Well it was a extremely difficult potion to brew on such short notice.” Severus stood from where he was sitting and came to look at the books Regulus had spread over the tabletop. “What are you searching for?” He drawled again, a hint of curiosity in his voice.
“A way to help Dyslexia, for Alex.” Regulus said.
“What now? I have never heard of such a thing.” Severus sneered.
“It is when one cannot read the written word correctly.,” explained Regulus.
“That, is illiteracy Black.” Came another sneer.
“No, if the words were backwards or floating about wouldn't you have issues reading Snape.” Regulus began to clear the table off, not wanting to be in the presence of the man any longer. He wanted to introduce him to Alex correctly but with the way the man was acting, it seemed as if he now hated Regulus with some passion.
“That seems unlikely.” Severus drawled again.
“Why don't you just bugger the fuck off Snape.” Regulus hissed from between clenched teeth. Then picked his books up and went to put them away. Only to be grabbed roughly be the forearm by Snape.
“Bugger off? That is what you want me to do?” The man's face was twisted in anger, and his black eyes flared with his temper.
“If you are going to treat me like a complete idiot then yes, that is what I want you to do.” Regulus pulled his arm from the other man's grasp.
“If you didn't make up such an ludicrous,”
“It isn't ludicrous you over grown bat!” Regulus snapped, turning away from the taller male. “It is a problem my son faces and I want to fix it.” Taking long purposeful strides, he made it to the bookshelf he needed, in less then six steps and began to levitate the books back into place high above his head. Then with a sigh, he made his way out of the library.
He was ten strides away from the doors when he heard fast-paced steps behind him. He didn't need to look over his shoulder to know it was Snape coming to confront him. He didn't know how he would respond to the other male now that no one was able to watch them, as most of the students were now in the Great Hall eating dinner.
“Black turn around and face me!” The older man snapped and Regulus stopped and stood silently.
“What do you want?” He said void of the emotion he actually felt. “I have said my piece and am willing to let it be. What can you possibly want to say?”
Without a word Regulus was spun around and book shoved into his hands before the other man was gone, walking towards the Great Hall all billowing black robes, and a glares. Regulus stood in shock for a second before he looked down at the book in his hand. Potions and Spells for Reading Disorders it read, and Regulus felt his throat tighten slightly. Shaking his head to bring reason back to himself, he clutched the book in silent awe.
Opening the book, he walked slowly down the hall towards the Infirmary to check and see if Alex was okay, that was until his stomach gave a beastly growl. Sighing he shook his head he had forgotten to eat. So the Lord Black tucked the book under his arm and made his way to the kitchens, where upon tickling the pear he was allowed into the bustling kitchen.
Several house elves jumped up in greeting when he walked in. Eager as they were, he soon found himself sitting at a large table stacked high with food. Taking a plate that he was handed Regulus filled it with all his favorite foods from his school days.
Just as he was, about to take his first bite of food the door to the kitchen swung open and there stood Minerva. Her usually serious face broke into a smile upon seeing him. Regulus was unable to hold his smile back, he respected the older woman for her mind and affection for her students.
“So word is that you are the new Defense Against the Dark Arts Professor.” She said lightly, joining him at his table where she was handed a plate. She slowly filled it with dance like grace, never taking her eyes away from his face, perhaps it was being a cat animagi that gave her that skill.
“Seems so, I've longed to show Alex this world for years and now it seems I'll have the chance.” Regulus smiled happily.
“Oh yes, I was quite surprised to hear that he was placed in Hufflepuff. Peculiar for Black, don't you think?” Minerva smiled.
“Quite. But I believe it is what is right for him.” Regulus took a bite of his food and hummed in delight.
“Does he know?” She asked without even glancing up.
“I...I don't think so.” Regulus put his fork down and looked at his former professor. “Do you believe I should tell him?”
“Frankly, I don't know. But he has lived a hard life, perhaps a glint of sun into his life would help him see that not all is lost.”
“Going a little heavy on the metaphors Minerva?” Regulus smiled.
“If it is needed.” She sniffed.
This made Regulus let loose a peel of laughter. Minerva looked at him and knew that he would have been grand in Gryffindor had he been placed there.
“Pardon?” He said suddenly.
Minerva looked up from her plate and blinked. “Did I say that aloud?”
“Yes, the secret is that the Sorting hat said I would have flourished in the house of the lion.” Regulus took another bite of turkey and looked at Minerva's surprised face that caused him to choke on his food in laughter.