The next day the vampire royal family along with eight guards went to Diagon Alley to get Shingetsu’s school supplies. Then they went to Ollivander’s to get Shingetsu a wand. Leaving the guards outside with Hana and Yuki, Shingetsu and Arashi went into the wand shop.
“May I help you?” Ollivander asked as he came out of the back room of his shop.
“My son is going to Hogwarts,” Arashi said.
Ollivander pulled out a wand. “Dragon Heartstring, 12 inches, Cherry. Give it a wave.”
Shingetsu took the wand and set the wand maker’s beard on fire. “Obviously not,” Ollivander said snatching the wand out of the vampire prince’s hand. “Here try this one. Vine, 14 inches, unicorn hair.”
Shingetsu waved it and the lights in the ceiling exploded. Ollivander hurriedly snatched it back. He tried twenty more wands before Ollivander decided to take him into the back room where he made custom wands. Inside were a cauldron and two tables. One table had different wand woods on it and the other table had different cores on it. “Please wave your hand over the cores until you feel a strong pull. Then wave the core or cores over the wand woods until you feel a strong pull over the wand wood of your choice and then finally select the gem.”
Shingetsu waved his hand over the cores and selected phoenix feather and Dementor ash. His wand wood was Hawthorn while the gem was an onyx. Tying them together he sank his teeth into his wrist and let his blood soak into the wood which began to glow as the vampire blood was absorbed. He handed the ingredients to Ollivander who threw them into the cauldron and five minutes later pulled it out. Then he carved a wolf along with the rune for ‘vampire’ onto the wand. “There you go. Hawthorn infused with vampire blood, phoenix feather and Dementor ash, thirteen inches.”
Shingetsu took his wand and left the shop with his father. Arashi was laughing at the memory of his son setting the wizard’s beard on fire. They proceeded to the pet shop and entered. “See anything you like?” Yuki asked her son. There were rats, monkeys, cats, ferrets and toads lining the cages in the front of the store. “No. I need something that can protect me and none of these can.”
“There are some large cats and other exotic animals in the back,” the shop owner said. “You’re welcome to go back there and look. Let me know what you find.”
They walked into the back of the store where they saw some wolves and a variety of large cats. There was a lion, a tiger, leopard, king cheetah, fox, a couple of cougars, and some other large and deadly animals. Shingetsu walked over to the panther that was lying in its cage looking at him. Shingetsu knelt down and the cat got up and moved gracefully towards Shingetsu. Shingetsu slipped a hand between the bars of the cage and stared into the animal’s eyes before petting the animal’s head. “I want this one dad,” Shingetsu said removing his hand and standing.
Shingetsu took the panther out and it moved to his side at once before they went into the front of the shop. Shingetsu placed a gold collar set with onyx and moonstones around the cat’s neck and took the leash the shop keeper handed him to fasten on to the panther’s collar. They paid for the panther and then left the shop. “What are you going to name him?” Arashi asked his son.
“Nightmare,” Shingetsu said placing a hand on Nightmare’s head and stroking the soft velvet feeling fur. Nightmare had emerald green eyes. “Dad will I be going on the Hogwarts Express?”
“No you and Titus will be shadow flaming to the edge of Hogwarts and will be met by two professors of that school. You’ll be sorted after the other first years.”
September first arrived and Neville was dropped off at Kings Cross Station by the Muggle family who had been taking care of him for the past ten years. He had been beaten and forced to do all the chores and cooking in the house. He looked around for someone to help him as he didn’t see any Platform 9 ¾. Seeing a red haired family with an owl he followed them until they stopped between the barriers of Platforms 9 and 10.
“Percy you go first and Fred and George you follow him. Ron you go after the twins and I’ll follow with Ginny,” Mrs. Weasley said. Neville watched the children in interest but a crowd appeared in front of the oldest boy and when the crowd dispersed the boy was gone. Neville stared in shock and tried to watch the twins as they went through the barrier but couldn’t figure out how they were in front of him one minute and then gone the next. Finally he decided there was nothing for it and he would have to speak to the red haired woman if he wanted to go to Hogwarts.
“Excuse me miss. Do you know how to get onto the platform?” Neville asked politely.
“Hogwarts dear? Just walk through the barrier between Platforms 9 and 10 and you’ll be at Platform 9 ¾. Best to do it at a run if you’re nervous. Go on ahead before Ron.”
Neville swung his trolley around to face the platform and closed his eyes as he ran towards the platform. Any second now he was going to hit the brick wall. But when he opened his eyes he found himself on a platform with a sign overhead saying “Platform 9 ¾” with a scarlet steam engine sitting on the tracks waiting for students to board. “I did it,” Neville gasped as his eyes widened in amazement.
The boy named Ron came through and then the red haired woman and the little girl after him. “Best hurry onto the train dear,” Mrs. Weasley said looking at Neville. “You don’t want to miss going to Hogwarts do you?”
“No ma’am,” Neville said. He took the cage containing his black eagle owl he’d named Styx and his trunk off the trolley before he began dragging his trunk towards the train. He set Styx’s cage down and tried to lift his trunk onto the train.
“Need some help?” Neville looked up to see the twins looking at him.
“Yes please,” Neville said. “I don’t know why they can’t make the trunks lighter or make it easier to get belongings onto the train.”
“I’m Fred and this is George,” one of the twins said.
“Pleasure to meet you. Are you a Muggle? Where are your parents?”
“I’m a pureblood. My parents are dead.”
“Sorry to hear that. What’s your name?”
“Neville Longbottom,” Neville said wondering why the twins were asking him so many questions.
“You’re the Boy-Who-Lived!” George and Fred said together.
“Uh yeah,” Neville said with a shrug of his shoulders. “Are you going to help me with my trunk or not?”
Fred and George lifted Neville’s trunk onto the train and jumped off. Neville picked up Styx’s cage and dragged his trunk along the train looking for an empty compartment. He noticed that many of the compartments weren’t full but he didn’t feel like sitting with anyone at the moment. Finally he found a compartment to himself, set Styx’s cage down on a seat, lifted his trunk onto the luggage rack before him and collapsed in the seat next to Styx. He opened Styx’s cage and allowed Styx to fly around the compartment flying up to perch on the luggage rack.
A few moments later the same red haired boy with freckles he had seen earlier opened the compartment door. “Can I sit here? Everywhere else is full,” the boy said.
“Actually no the train isn’t even close to being full,” Neville said. “I don’t see why you have to lie.” Neville pulled out a book on Herbology and began reading it while continuing to ignore Ron. He heard the boy huff and the door close. When he looked up the boy was gone. “I suppose people are only going to bother seeing me as the Boy-Who-Lived and not on my own merits,” Neville sighed shaking his head.
The rest of the train ride went smoothly and thankfully nobody else tried entering Neville’s compartment. Finally the train slowed and came to a stop. Neville had already changed into his wizard robes and put Styx back in his cage. “I’ll see you at the castle Styx,” Neville said looking at his friend. Styx gave a small hoot and Neville left the train with the other students.
“First years over here! Come on over this way! First years!”
Neville followed the sound of the voice until he came to a man with bushy hair and a wild beard that made him look scary. “Hi Hagird,” Neville said to the game keeper.
“Hi Neville,” Hagrid said. “Okay is everyone here?” Hagrid asked looking around at the first years clustered together. “Right then follow me. We’ll be going across the Black Lake to get to Hogwarts. It’s tradition you see.”
The first years followed Hagrid down to the Black Lake where they were instructed to get into boats. Neville was joined by a girl with bushy brown hair, the red head from earlier much to his displeasure, and a black boy who introduced himself as Dean Thomas. Hagrid got a boat all to himself. “Keep your hands in the boat and don’t do anything stupid,” Hagrid said. Then the boats were off sailing across the lake.
“You’ll be getting your first glimpse of Hogwarts in a bit,” Hagrid said. As they rounded the bend in the lake they saw a majestic castle with lots of towers and turrets looming above them. Lights shone in all the windows and the students marveled at the sight. “Watch your heads,” Hagrid said as they approached a concealed harbor that was a cave filled with water. They docked at the shore and climbed out before following Hagrid up the stairs and stopping at a set of double oak doors. Hagrid knocked and a woman with glasses and a stern look on her face opened the doors.
“First years Professor,” Hagrid said.
“Thank you Hagrid. You should go to the Great Hall.”
Hagrid smiled at the first years and then left for the Great Hall. The first years stood in a line in front of the stern looking witch. “Good evening. My name is Professor McGonagall and welcome to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. You will be sorted into your house in a few moments. While at Hogwarts your house will be like your family for the next seven years. The four houses are Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin. Each house has turned out great witches and wizards and each house has their own traits and noble history. Points will be earned by answering questions and any rule breaking will lose you house points. I will come for you when it is time to begin the sorting. Until then please be quiet and straighten up.”
The first years began whispering as to what the sorting would consist of. Neville just rolled his eyes at some of the theories of how they would be sorted. “We get sorted by a hat,” the bushy haired girl said. “I read it in Hogwarts: A History. Honestly does nobody bother to read their course books before they enter Hogwarts?”
Suddenly a student screamed. Neville looked up and saw ghosts coming through the wall talking with themselves. A fat monk saw them and smiled. “First year students! I’m the Fat Friar and the ghost of Hufflepuff House. Hope to see you in my house!”
“Move along now,” Professor McGonagall said coming back into the Entrance Hall. The ghosts disappeared and Professor McGonagall stood looking at the students in front of her. “Form into a line and follow me.”
The students followed Professor McGonagall down the hallway as the older students fell silent and stared at the first years. Neville was a bit nervous and knew that people would expect a lot of him since he was the Boy-Who-Lived. The students lined up in front of the entrance hall and the hat sang before Professor McGonagall began calling out names. Finally they got into the L’s which Neville had been dreading. “Longbottom, Neville!”
“The Boy-Who-Lived is at Hogwarts!”
“Neville Longbottom? The Neville Longbottom?”
Whispers followed Neville as he made his way to the stool and sat down. The hat barely touched his head before it shouted ‘GRYFFINDOR!’ The red and gold table stood up and clapped as Neville made his way over to the table beside Hermione Granger, the bushy haired girl with buck teeth that made her look like a beaver.
Professors Snape and McGonagall stood outside in the cold waiting for the vampire prince and his guard to arrive. Snape couldn’t understand why the headmaster had allowed the vampire prince to come to Hogwarts. They were on the edge of the Forbidden Forest staring out into the trees when three figures emerged from the shadows. The full moon shone and the smaller figure stopped halfway to the professors and looked up at the moon with a smile on his face. The man beside him halted and waited as the boy continued to stand there.
“Prince Shingetsu is something wrong?” Titus asked his young master.
“I know of how humans treat our kind Titus. The muggles see us as monsters and the witches and wizards see us as evil along with werewolves. They don’t bother to understand our laws and how vampire society works. How am I to be sure that the humans won’t kill me for what I am?” Shingetsu said lowering his head to stare at the vampire in front of him.
Titus sighed. The young prince was afraid that he would be harmed by the humans who had invited him to this school of magic. Though the prince was a wizard vampire Titus couldn’t help but wonder why exactly his young master had been invited to Hogwarts in the first place when the last vampire to enter Hogwarts had been Titus himself twenty years ago.
“Young prince I promise I will protect you from the humans. Nightmare will also protect you as well sire. The humans can’t do anything to you without starting a war between the vampires and the magical humans.”
“That may be so Titus but things have not been easy for our kind for centuries. I do not trust these humans or their Ministry but I am happy that I am able to come here and complete my wizarding training even if I am a vampire.”
“Sire I swear on my life and blood that I will protect you even if it means sacrificing myself,” Titus said bowing. “The humans are staring at us. We should get inside so you can begin your seven years of magical education.”
Shingetsu nodded. “I don’t see how we’re going to be able to hunt since we’re under ‘strict orders’ not to feed on the student body or the humans in the surrounding village,” Shingetsu grumbled.
“There’s some blood lollipops in your trunk sire but I know what you mean. We can’t survive on animal blood and I don’t know what we will do without being able to hunt.”
“If necessary we can always shadow travel and hunt somewhere outside of these grounds. I wonder what these humans would think if they discovered that vampire can walk about in the day and night without fear of catching on fire like their legends say.”
The vampire prince and his guard walked towards the two humans who stiffened at their approach. “If you’ll follow us Mr. Yamazaki then we will take you to the Great Hall to be sorted into your house.”
“What is that panther doing here?!” Snape exclaimed.
“The panther is the prince’s familiar human,” Titus said with a low growl. “It stays with the prince or we will turn and leave Hogwarts. My king decided his son would need a familiar to defend him in case he is attacked by your kind. Here’s the letter that I was instructed to give to the deputy headmistress of this school saying that my young master’s familiar is to attend all classes with him. Nightmare is well behaved and won’t attack anyone as long as they don’t attack or threaten my prince.” Titus removed an envelope from the pocket of his black leather jacket. “Now can we please go into the castle? Neither of us fancy sleeping out here tonight.”
“Of course,” Professor McGonagall said looking at Titus and the little prince. “Please follow us. Oh and my name is Professor McGonagall, deputy headmistress and transfiguration teacher and the man beside me is Professor Snape, potions master.”
Titus handed Professor McGonagall the envelope and they followed the two professors into the entrance hall. “Sire I will wait here until I find out your house and then take Nightmare and your trunk to your dorm.”
“Very well Titus,” Shingetsu said placing a kiss on Nightmare’s head. “When will I be sorted Professor McGonagall?”
“In a minute. I just have to alert the headmaster of your arrival and prepare the students.”
Shingetsu nodded and watched the two professors go through the double doors that must have led into the Great Hall. “I’m starving,” Shingetsu muttered as his stomach rumbled. Titus smiled. “If you don’t eat anything I’ll see about the house elves giving you something to eat Shingetsu when you get to your dorm.”
“Thank you Titus. My parents made a good choice by choosing you to go with me to Hogwarts.”
“Actually your highness I asked to come. It’s boring being at Nightshade with nothing to do.”
Shingetsu laughed at his friend. “I don’t blame you for volunteering to come with me to Hogwarts. I wouldn’t have wanted anyone else with me.”
In the Great Hall Professor Snape took his seat and Professor McGonagall spoke in the headmaster’s ear before taking her seat beside him. Albus Dumbledore stood up and the students fell silent. “For the next seven years we will be graced with the presence of the vampire prince. I would like you all to welcome Prince Shingetsu Yamazaki,” Dumbledore said. The doors to the Great Hall swung open and everyone stared at the eleven year old vampire prince who had auburn hair with midnight blue streaks running through and violet eyes. Shingetsu walked towards the stool and sat down with the sorting hat on his head.
“Ah another vampire I see. We haven’t had one since Titus Fang came to Hogwarts twenty years ago.”
“That is the vampire who is with me to watch over me while at Hogwarts and keep me safe from the humans’ hat.”
“Well little prince I think you will do well in Ravenclaw or Gryffindor. You certainly have the mind to fit into Ravenclaw as they prize book smarts and you are certainly smart for a vampire. You also have bravery and courage which means you would do well in Gryffindor. I can see you also have a lot of power for one so young. You are loyal to your nation, family and friends and a hard worker which means you’d be good being in Hufflepuff. Yet at the same time you worry for your kind and your safety at Hogwarts among humans which is understandable. Better be GRYFFINDOR!”
Shingetsu stood up and placed the hat on the stool before walking over to the lion table and taking a seat. Everyone was staring at him and whispers started up again. With disappointment Shingetsu saw that the feast had ended. Titus!
I got into Gryffindor and the hat appears to know you. Please take Nightmare and my trunk up to my dormitory and ask the house elves to make me something to eat. Get something for yourself too as well and maybe some meat for Nightmare. It figures that we would get here and the feast would be over.
Titus laughed in Shingetsu’s mind and broke the telepathic connection leaving Shingetsu alone. He stared at the humans around him who were watching him warily. They already think I’m a monster and they don’t even know me. Their fear is coming off them in waves and they don’t even realize it.
“Now I have a few words. No magic is to be practiced in the corridors or between classes. Stay away from the Forbidden Forest and away from the third floor corridor. Now off you trot! Big day tomorrow!”
Shingetsu followed the other first years out of the Great Hall and up seven floors before reaching a portrait of a fat lady in a pink dress. “Hogsmeade Sweets,” Percy said and the portrait swung outward allowing the students to climb through the hole into the common room. “Boys dorms are on the right and girls’ dorms are on the left. I should mention that girls’ dorms do not allow boys to enter. You will find your trunks in your dorm at the foot of your beds. Get up tomorrow at 7AM because I will be taking you to the Great Hall and then showing you to your first class.”
Shingetsu followed the other five boys up to his dorm. There was Dean Thomas, Neville Longbottom, Seamus Finnegan, Ron Weasley, and Tobias Moon. Shingetsu smiled as he saw Nightmare on the floor hungrily eating a haunch of deer meat while the others just looked in disgust at the panther. Ron saw the food plate of food sitting on Shingetsu’s nightstand and made to grab it when Shingetsu grabbed the boy’s wrist and used his other hand to pluck the roll out of Ron’s other hand. “That’s my dinner so I suggest you keep your hands to yourself,” Shingetsu said in a deadly voice. Nightmare looked up from his plate and growled at Ron who quickly got into his bed.
Shingetsu grabbed his tray and sat on his bed before waving his wand at his drapes which closed and blocked him off from view. He looked at the roast chicken, chocolate pudding, fruit salad, and goblet of blood in front of him. He sighed as the hot blood went down his throat though it wasn’t as satisfying as human blood. No animal blood was as wonderful as human blood. I should have made Titus take me hunting before we came to Hogwarts.
Shingetsu continued eating his meal before he set it on the nightstand and watched it disappear back to the kitchens. He changed into his pajamas and Nightmare jumped up onto the bed before Shingetsu climbed under the blanket and waved his wand again at the drapes. He closed his eyes and lay there listening to the five other boys talking about him.
“That’s a vampire! What the hell is a vampire doing here?! And why does he have a panther?!”
“Calm down Ron,” Dean said. “I don’t think the panther will attack us as long as we don’t attack the vampire prince. Did you not listen to anything Dumbledore said in the Great Hall?”
So that is the fool father and mother told me about when I was five years old.
“Yeah something about a vampire prince would be gracing us with his presence for the next seven years. Vampires are dark creatures or don’t you know that Dean?”
“I’m a muggleborn. In our society vampires are monsters that feed on the blood of the living and rise from the graves after they are turned. They have no soul or morals,” Dean said. “I don’t know what vampires mean in the wizarding world.”
“Vampires are creatures of evil. Vampires and werewolves are the two darkest creatures in our society. They aren’t even allowed to own wand without the Ministry’s permission. They cannot be trusted.”
“I think he seems nice,” Tobias said softly. “I wouldn’t mind making friends with him if he would let me. It can’t be easy being the only one of your species in a different environment from what you are used to dealing with. And really if you are going to be biased against creatures then perhaps you are the ones who don’t belong here.”
“What do you think Neville?” Seamus asked.
“I know that vampires side with the Dark Lord so I can’t trust him. I can’t trust any dark creature.”
“Seamus?” Ron asked.
“I don’t know. How can I make a decision based on what I have heard without knowing what the vampire kid is like? That isn’t fair to him.”
“Well I’m not going to ever be friends with that vampire! In fact Tobias if you like him so much take my bed because I refuse to sleep next to him!”
Shingetsu heard the argument and tears spilled down his face as he heard the prejudice from four of his dorm mates. He had known this would happen when he was announced to the Great Hall but he had hoped that his dorm mates would give him a chance before shunning him. Why would they? These children are just as prejudiced and bigoted against vampires as their ancestors. I was a fool to hope it would miraculously change just because I wanted it to do so. He heard the sound of a trunk being dragged to the bed on his left and the voices faded into silence. “Goodnight Shingetsu,” Tobias said softly as he looked at the drapes surrounding the vampire prince’s bed before he drifted into dreams.