Chapter 1: Cover Art Work
Cover art for the story.
Chapter 2: Left Alive
Jake was no idiot, he knew that with the wealth under Pandora's soil, the Sky People (much to his chargrin he had found he had even started mentally referring to humans as that) would not stay gone forever and if a fleet came back the Na'vi didn't have a hope. The planet couldn't rise up against nuclear weapons from orbit. Hence Pandora's future lay in making sure it was more useful to Earth intact than blasted to pieces and mined out. So the scientists left behind were working on projects that could help Earth, communications were ongoing and the Na'vi were helping with everything.
So far it was working and Jake made sure he knew everything that was going on, which meant regular visits to Hell's Gate and meetings. He was sure Grace would have been proud of him; he was still doing science even though he really didn't understand what half of the mumbo jumbo was about.
They had another meeting in the morning about the latest big project, which was something to do with bio-engineering some of Pandora's flora to be compatible with Earth to help the atmospheric problems happening there due to pollution. Norm had tried to explain the details and Jake had just nodded in what he had hoped were the right places.
Tomorrow was going to be a long day and Jake sat looking into the trees as they glowed in the darkness. It was so beautiful it almost hurt, especially to Na'vi eyes and he found his mind wandering. Tommy would have found it amazing.
The pain that blossomed in his heart at that thought was still raw and it was like a knife in his chest. He had thought he had pushed it away, left it behind, but he realised starkly that it was very much not gone. It had been months since the banishment of the Sky People and he still felt Grace's loss, but he could think of her with only an ache, nothing like the same way he felt every time he thought of Tommy.
It was worse since he had become his Avatar.
"Something troubles you, My Mate," Neytiri said, walking up and sitting down beside him, leaning against him in a comforting gesture.
"I was thinking about before," he said, finding it as easy to talk to her as ever.
Once he would have hidden his pain, but the connection between the Na'vi, the connection between himself and Neytiri, would not allow it.
"Tell me," she said simply.
It was difficult to explain since he didn't really know what he was thinking himself, so he chose to start at what was the beginning.
"I had a brother," he said and found even that hard to say; "his name was Tommy and he was killed before he could come here. When we were younger we were never apart. He was always the brains, but he never left me behind, always explaining everything, but when we were teenagers our parents thought we were too close, that I was holding him back. They sent me to military school and Tommy to a school for genius kids."
"They separated you from your brother?" Neytiri sounded scandalised by the thought.
Jake just nodded.
"And by the time we came back together again we were different people," he said, feeling the regret more keenly than he had ever let himself feel it before. "He was always so much cleverer than me, but once we could talk, understand each other, when we met up again we couldn't even do that. I never spoke to our parents again for doing that to us."
Neytiri's fingers rubbed gently over his own as if she felt his pain.
"This body was not supposed to be mine, it was supposed to be his," he said, admitting what he had never told her. "He should have been seeing the wonders of Eywa, not me."
"The ways of destiny are often strange to us, Jake," Neytiri said gently; "we cannot always understand them."
"I'm just an accident of genetics," he replied, glaring off into the distance, angry that the universe had seen fit to take away his twin.
When he looked back, Neytiri clearly did not understand that, but she moved in closer anyway.
"I do not know what 'genetics' is, Jake," she told him, "but you are mine and I like that very much."
For a moment he just let himself enjoy the closeness, but his inner turmoil would not let him do it for long.
"Genetics is the understanding of what makes us," he said, even though he did not really feel like explaining; "it is what made this body possible, what makes what they're doing in the labs possible. The scientists took part of my brother and part of one of The People and created this form. It was dumb luck that because we were twins, after he was killed I could use the Avatar."
"Twins?" Neytiri asked, frowning at him a little. "I do not know this word either."
Jake tried to think, but he didn't know the Na'vi word either; thinking about it he didn't think he'd seen twins among the tribe.
"Um," he tried to think of a way to explain it; "we were the same," he started. "Tommy and I, we looked the same, we were born together; we were identical."
Neytiri's eyes went wide upon hearing that.
"Me'smuk," she whispered almost reverently.
It took Jake a moment to figure out that word, since he hadn't heard it before; roughly it meant dual siblings.
"That sounds about right," he said, not really understanding why his mate was now staring at him.
"Jake," Neytiri said slowly, "you are Awtirea?"
That didn't take him as long to figure out, 'one spirit' was something he had heard before. It sounded like something the Na'vi would think of with twins, but he didn't feel comfortable just saying yes.
"So you do have twins?" he asked, wanting to understand rather than replying. "I don't think I've seen any in the tribe."
At first he had had trouble telling the Na'vi apart, but that hadn't been a problem for a long time and he was sure he would have noticed twins.
"We do," Neytiri replied and placed her hand over his heart, "it is very rare. Such a birth brings great joy to all the tribes. The last was over a generation ago."
That at least explained the staring. If twin births were so rare it also explained why he hadn't seen any Na'vi twins running around. Given the hostile environment and the Na'vi way of life it made sense that multiple births would be even less common than among humans.
"I forgot how much he meant to me until he was gone," he admitted as Neytiri looked up again and into his eyes; "and even then I tried to forget him, but the pain won't go away."
"It is the shock to the spirit," Neytiri said, cupping the side of his face; "I see your pain, I feel it."
"I've lost him," he whispered, feeling the hurt so clearly it almost stopped him breathing, "and I don't know what to do."
Neytiri pulled him into an embrace.
"You cannot lose him, Jake," she said gently, stroking the side of his face and neck; "you are Awtirea."
A single tear ran down his cheek.
"He was not here," he said, feeling the loss like it had happened only yesterday, "he is not with Eywa."
Life was in balance here on Pandora; it was possible to see the cycling of the energy of the world, but Tommy had died on Earth, so far away it was impossible to comprehend in normal distances.
"But he is here, Jake," Neytiri said, pulling away and making him look at her by cupping his face with her hands; "he is with you."
Metaphysical logic did not help him; he had seen his twin turn to ash.
"I've lost him," he repeated, trying to explain how much it hurt.
"No, Jake," she told him, placing her forehead against his, "you cannot lose half of a whole. You are One Spirit; you were in two bodies, but you are One Spirit. He cannot leave you as you cannot leave him. Sometimes the call of Eywa is too strong and when one hears it, both must go, but if one survives then all the spirit survives. Tommy is still within you."
Jake didn't believe that, even after all he had seen, all he had felt, he could not believe it.
"If he was there, I would know," he said, unwilling to let go of his belief.
"Dying is hard, Jake," Neytiri said as she held him gently, "the spirit retreats."
Something tried to blossom inside the pain, something like hope, but Jake pushed it away. It would hurt too much to find out this was all some spiritual journey and nothing like his human mind thought.
"Come," Neytiri said, standing up and guiding him to his feet, "we must speak with Mo'at."
Jake did not want to speak about this; what he wanted was for the pain to go away, but when Neytiri looked at him with those big, expressive eyes, he allowed her to pull him along. The tribe was still rebuilding; they had chosen a new hometree and it was growing and changing rapidly under Mo'at's guidance and Eywa's power, but it was not yet ready for habitation. The only person living in it at the moment was Mo'at herself and she came out to meet them as they approached, as if she had known they were coming.
"I see you, My Daughter and JakeSully," Mo'at said, smiling kindly at them, "how may I help you?"
"Jake is Awtirea, My Mother," Neytiri said before Jake could even formulate a response, "and the body which held the other half of his soul died before he came to the people. He needs guidance."
Mo'at appeared shocked and came straight towards him, taking his face in her hands.
"My poor child," Mo'at said, looking straight into his eyes, "you must be in great pain. Come, you must tell me everything."
So Jake followed Mo'at into the hometree, Neytiri close behind and they sat, drank fruit juice and Jake explained everything about Tommy again. It hurt just as much the second time, but that little spark of hope which Neytiri's words had kindled refused to let him just walk away.
When he was done, Mo'at knelt up in front of him, placed a hand on his forehead and closed her eyes. He wasn't sure what he expected, but it definitely wasn't the flash of energy that leapt up through his body from where he was sitting on the ground to the point where Mo'at was touching him. It made him gasp as his vision vanished in a bright flash, only to reassert itself a second later as he blinked owlishly around.
Then, as Mo'at removed her hand he felt something else. If was much fainter, but so familiar it was like touching his own mind. It only lasted a moment, but his mind filled with Tommy before the feeling was gone again. He recognised the sensation, even though he had never before been consciously aware of anything like it with his twin, and when it disappeared it almost ripped his heart out.
"Tommy," he said, desperately searching for the feeling again, but it would not come.
He looked at Mo'at, frantic for more.
"It will take time," Mo'at told him gently, "but with the help of Eywa, he may be returned to you."
Now the real tears came because Jake might have been a hard-bitten marine, but Tommy made it an entirely different ball game.
Jake had barely slept, but there was an important meeting about the future of Pandora the next morning, so he had to pull himself together and deal with it.
Since Na'vi could tolerate human air for periods of time, although it did give them quite a high if they were in it too long, all the sit down meetings where humans were to be present were held inside Hell's Gate. It meant everyone could meet face to face without the need for breathing apparatus and, after banging his head a few times, Jake had remembered to keep ducking.
He felt off balance after his experiences of the previous night and he had done very little talking during the gathering. Luckily Norm had done enough talking for three, because the project was reaching a really exciting part, so only Neytiri seemed to notice. Of course, Norm wanted to drag him to see all the new developments once all the jabbering was over and all he wanted to do was return to the forest to think, but instead followed his friend.
It was on the way to the new hydroponics lab that Jake suddenly stopped walking. He wasn't sure why for a moment, but his instincts had fired and when he looked around he realised something.
"I don't remember that before," he said, looking at an old entry way that he was sure was not familiar.
It definitely hadn't been opened in a while and it wasn't exactly in what had been a well used part of the base before the new lab had been put in, but Jake had been past the point many times both before and since he became, for all intents and purposes, Na'vi.
"What?" Norm asked with a completely innocent expression.
"The door," Jake said and rolled his eyes; he wasn't in the mood for games.
"What door?" Norm asked and Jake had just about had enough.
The interior of the base made him claustrophobic, he had far too many things to think about to do with Tommy and the air was getting to him; the last thing he needed was Norm playing at tease the ex-marine.
"I do not see a door, Jake," Neytiri said and stopped him before he could tell Norm where to get off.
Jake looked at his mate in confusion; the door was right there. Either Neytiri was sharing a joke with Norm, something Jake had trouble imagining, or he was hallucinating.
"There," he said, pointing at it and Neytiri followed the line of his hand.
She frowned and then her eyes opened in shock.
"I see it," she said sounding very surprised, "but, Jake," she continued turning to him, "I did not see it before."
"What are you two talking about?" Norm asked and the scientist was looking at them as if they were both insane.
Without bothering to reply, Jake walked up to the door and touched the release mechanism. It felt as if electricity ran up his arm as he did, but the door popped open and the smell of stale air came out. Norm stood there with his mouth open.
"How the hell?" Norm said and looked honestly flabbergasted. "That was not there."
"Well it is now," Jake said, feeling more and more intrigued; at least he had something other than Tommy to think about now.
Never one to let anyone else walk into a situation he wasn't willing to risk, he ducked through the doorway and found some stairs going down. They wound into what seemed to be an underground lab that hadn't been aired out for some time. It was also like no lab Jake had seen upstairs.
Admittedly, he wasn't overly familiar with labs in general, but this one looked kind of strange. There was equipment like upstairs, but some of it didn't appear quite right and didn't look as if it was connected to any power supply he could see. The lights came up automatically as he stepped into the room, but they weren't normal either; they appeared to be five glowing orbs that looked as if they were just floating.
Jake felt a tingle in his feet similar to the blast of power that had ripped through him as Mo'at had touched him the previous evening. It was nowhere near as intense, but something was definitely setting him off.
However, his attention was quickly taken by the two gurneys in the middle of the room. They were covered in green cloth, but it was more than clear that there were bodies lying under the coverings. Given the layer of dust that was on things in the general area, he didn't think anyone had been in the lab for some time, but there was no smell of decay or anything like that.
"Dead?" Neytiri asked as she came to stand next to him.
"I don't know," he replied and couldn't help wondering if this was some type of robotics project that had been abandoned.
There were no signs than anything organic had decomposed and he could smell other things that meant it wasn't a sterile environment, so he couldn't think how what he was seeing could be actual bodies. It bothered him that the bodies were definitely the size of Na'vi, not human. He really hoped they weren't about to discover a dissection room.
"Wow," Norm said looking around; "this place is awesome and crazy at the same time."
Needing answers, Jake walked over to the nearest gurney and pulled back the sheet. He was definitely not expecting what he found. There on the gurney was not a human or a Na'vi, but an Avatar, given away by the mixed features, and it was the strangest one Jake had ever seen. Neytiri walked to the other gurney, but Jake was far too fascinated by what he was seeing to look over.
He had never heard of an Avatar or Na'vi with white blond hair before, at least not unless they were ancient and Na'vi hair tended to go blue grey, not white. It was fascinating and he reached out to touch before he thought about it. What he really did not expect was for the same feeling he had had at the door to run through his whole body this time and then the panels next to the gurney jump into life. The Avatar on the bench took a huge breath and the monitor started beeping.
"Shit, he's alive," he said, stepping forward to take a closer look.
Clearly the lab had not been as abandoned as it had appeared.
Since there was no one on Pandora that looked like the Avatar it was almost a sure bet there was no driver for him, but the Avatar was still fascinating to see. Why it was in the basement with no driver was anyone's guess; Avatars were far too expensive to waste.
"There is no human here who looks like this one," Neytiri said, coming to stand close to him.
The fact that humans looked like their Avatars was not something that had passed the Na'vi by, so his mate understood what she was talking about.
"Not that we know of," he agreed, but he couldn't help remembering how no one had seen the door before either.
Something very strange was going on and it became even stranger when the Avatar opened his eyes and blinked. Without a driver Avatars were inert; they definitely didn't open their eyes and they definitely didn't lift their hand and stare at it as if they weren't sure what they were looking at.
"Why in Merlin's name am I blue?" asked a very confused and aristocratic sounding voice.
Yellow eyes with silver streaks looked at him and Jake had no idea what to say.
"You're in an Avatar," Norm stepped in smoothly, "is this your first awakening?"
The unnamed Avatar looked at Norm as if the man had two heads or something.
"What is an Avatar?" the newly awakened stranger asked pointedly and sat up.
It was at this point that the Avatar swayed and almost fell off the gurney and Jake moved to help without thinking. He remembered the disorientation and he didn't want the newcomer to bash out the brain of his Avatar before answering a few questions.
"At the moment, you are," Jake said, helping the clearly confused man to sit up straight. "Do you remember where your real body is?"
All he got for that was a frown; it didn't look as if the blond knew what he was talking about. He went to try and explain, but before he had a chance the Avatar looked right and the strange hybrid eyes lighted on where Neytiri had dawn back the other sheet.
"Harry," the blond said in a panicked tone, a tone that Jake understood all too well since he had felt that way when Neytiri had been in danger.
He did not fight his charge as the man pushed past him and struggled to his feet, clearly disorientated, but determined to make it to the other gurney. Jake went with him more to help than to hinder.
"Oh god, Harry," the blond said and reached out, as if afraid to touch and then gasped when his fingers met the other's skin.
Jake felt something shift and then the other Avatar took a huge breath as well.
"Harry," the, as yet, unnamed stranger said, taking his companion's face in his hands and looking down.
When large eyes blinked up this time they were yellow tinted with green and Jake had never seen that colour on an Avatar or a Na'vi either. There was something very unusual about both of the Avatars in the hidden lab, that was for sure.
"Draco?" Harry said, sounding confused. "You're blue."
That made the finally named Draco laugh, a small hysterical little sound.
"So are you," was the short response and it sounded to Jake like this was a reunion neither had ever expected to have.
Draco lowered his forehead and touched it to Harry's and Jake couldn't help but think of times he had done the same to Neytiri. He could feel the relief in the pair; it was palpable.
"They are mated," was Neytiri's succinct conclusion as she stood just behind him, "and they believed each other lost."
He couldn't disagree; it was exactly what he had been thinking. The idea of loss tried to bring Tommy back to the forefront of his mind, but he pushed those thoughts away ruthlessly. They would have to wait.
"What's happening, Draco?" Harry asked, still obviously disorientated.
"I think they," Jake found himself the centre of attention of two pairs of eyes, "can tell us."
Jake held out the forgotten sheet to Draco, who only then seemed to realise he was naked. The blond accepted it quickly and wrapped it around his waist.
"You really have no idea what's going on, do you?" Jake said, knowing that what he was seeing was not an act.
"Not a clue," Draco said in an almost challenging way while helping his companion sit up. "Care to enlighten us?"
That was difficult since Jake wasn't really sure.
"What's the last thing you remember?" he asked, wanting to find some common ground.
"Dying," was the very blunt response.
That wasn't really what he had expected to hear.
"We were in St Mungo's," Harry said, placing a calming hand on Draco's arm in what looked like a familiar gesture; "we had been in a battle. Draco had been hit with something very nasty."
"And because you were a stubborn idiot and would not let the bond go I was taking you with me," Draco said, seemingly very distressed by the thought.
For a moment Jake was pretty sure the pair forgot the rest of them were there with the way they looked at each other.
"I didn't want to go on without you," Harry said very quietly and then looked back across the room; "I think the healers put us in some sort of stasis. Is this the result?"
Jake looked at Norm; he had no idea what was going on.
"We're not sure," Norm said hesitantly; "we only just found you ourselves. You were hidden behind a door that wasn't there; weirdest thing I've ever seen."
"Muggles," Draco said as if that meant something.
"What's the year?" Jake asked on instinct.
The pair looked at each other.
"2008," Harry said after a moment.
"Holy shit," was Jake's instant response.
This was getting more unbelievable by the second.
"I'm guessing we're a little off?" Draco said in a rather cutting tone.
"It's 2155," Norm said as if apologising for the fact.
"And you're in the Alpha Centauri system on a moon called Pandora," Jake added and looked for a reaction.
Both Draco and Harry appeared stunned.
"Which would be the reason we are blue?" Harry asked, sounding more than a little dazed.
"Your bodies are hybrids," Jake decided to give them Avatar 101; "made from your DNA and that of the Na'vi. The Na'vi are the native people here on Pandora. Your real bodies must be around somewhere in transfer pods allowing you to control the Avatars. They must have kept you in stasis all this time."
"There's just one thing I don't get," he added after a moment. "I'm no history buff, but I didn't think they had the technology in the twenty first century to preserve anyone like that, hell, we can't do it that well today."
The pair shared another glance.
"We were involved in very secret government work," Draco said and Jake believed the secret part, he just wasn't sure about the government bit.
There was something going on that the pair weren't saying, but he wasn't sure it was the time to demand answers.
"Are you like us?" Harry asked and drew his attention. "Are you an Avatar?"
"I was," he said as Neytiri stepped up close beside him and placed a possessive hand on his arm as if to remind him of the current reality, "but I chose to become this way permanently. My human body is gone now."
"Jake," Neytiri said, "we should go outside; this air is not good for clear thinking."
Jake could only nod; he was beginning to feel the effects and they definitely needed clear heads for this.
End of Part 1
Chapter 3: New Reality
Harry and Draco try to adjust to the new reality of Pandora, while Jake tried to adjust to them.
Guess what else I've decided to try and finish. I always knew where I wanted it to go, but I've only just figured out how to get there :) There should be one more chapter soon.
Harry was having trouble believing he wasn't hallucinating because outside was simply amazing. The colours and smells and simple power of Pandora were almost overwhelming.
"Do you feel it?" he asked Draco as they both looked around all but open mouthed.
"Magic," Draco replied, holding on to his arm like it was a way to stay grounded, "everywhere, in everything, including our blue friends, especially him."
"It's like being in Hogwarts only multiplied a hundred times," Harry agreed. "Is this real?"
He had to ask, because it just seemed like it couldn't be.
He turned to find that Jake, as the male avatar, Na'vi or whatever the hell he was, had introduced himself, had now walked up behind them without either of them even noticing. Harry realised his Auror reflexes were out of practice.
"You'll have to forgive us," Draco said, covering smoothly, "but nothing like this was possible in our time."
"Do you remember anything between then and now?" Norm, who was now wearing a mask asked.
Harry shook his head.
"Nothing," he admitted.
"Well we really should try and find your bodies," Norm said; "since we don't know what shape they're in. I can only guess that someone designed a stasis pod that is also a transfer pod if you don't remember anything."
"Why would they do that?" Jake asked, clearly suspicious.
"Who knows why the military do anything," Norm replied with a shrug. "I've got people looking for other hidden doors, but so far no one's found anything."
"Would it be quicker if one of us tried to wake up?" Draco asked.
Norm had done a lot of talking on the way out, so Harry at least understood what Draco was talking about. He wasn't sure he liked the idea though.
"Probably," Jake agreed.
"So what do I do?" Of course Draco volunteered.
"What makes you think I'm going to let you do it?" Harry immediately objected.
"Because squabbling in front of new people would be uncouth," Draco replied and managed to make an aristocratic eyebrow lift just as effective as it had been on his human face.
Harry rolled his eyes and Draco looked back at Norm.
"Well, lie down and think back to your body," Norm said. "If you have any problems at the other end just reconnect and wake up here again."
Draco nodded and did as he was told. The fact that Harry was not sure if he could deal with Draco not being right there was, unfortunately, less important than finding out what the hell was going on.
It was clear they were surrounded by Muggles, but the fact there was magic everywhere meant the situation was incredibly complicated. Harry really wished he had his wand as he tried not to think of missing Draco.
"It's not working," probably weren't the words he most wanted to hear, but Harry was quite pleased when Draco said them and sat up.
"It has to work," Norm said, crouching down beside Draco.
"I get nothing," Draco replied.
That their Avatars might be magical occurred to Harry, but it wasn't exactly something they could investigate in front of Muggles.
"Let me try," he suggested and sat down, before lying down next to where his husband was sitting.
He thought about his real body, about waking up, but there was nothing there. It was as if he was reaching into emptiness and he opened his eyes.
"I'm going to try something," he said and closed his eyes again.
"Harry, don't you dare..."
He ignored Draco and felt for his magic. He had always had a little bit of a different relationship with his magic than an average wizard and he could feel it moving under his skin. Sometimes he could do things without really knowing how so he tried to activate whatever would get him back to his own body. He basically felt for home.
In answer his magic flared, far more powerfully than he had expected. There was a far too familiar pop and he opened his eyes to find himself back in the hidden lab. Two very startled technicians stared at him and he gave them his best smile and decided he'd already blown it so there was no point in leaving Draco to panic.
"You moronic, idiotic, thick headed Gryffindor," Draco ranted at him the moment he reappeared. "What the hell do you think you were doing?"
"Trying to find my body," he protested, "but I'm beginning to think I don't have one."
That shut Draco up.
"I think we've been transferred like Jake," he replied, sitting up. "I ended up back in the lab and I don't feel anything when I try and think of my human body. I'm not sure either of us has one to go back to."
"But why?" Draco asked, clearly at a loss.
"Maybe because they couldn't fix what was left?" Harry suggested. "The Ministry always did like to throw us at new things."
"What I want to know is how the hell you just disappeared and reappeared," Jake interrupted their conversation.
"Magic," Draco snapped back, clearly not dealing well with Harry's revelation.
"Oh my god you're wizards," Norm said and then slapped his hand across his mouth, or would have done if there hadn't been a mask in the way.
"What do you know about wizards?" Draco demanded.
"One summer of forbidden love when I was twelve and she lived next door to me for a month," Norm said. "All totally innocent," he added hastily. "She liked my name."
Harry wasn't sure why Norm would be such an amazing name and it must have shown on his face.
"Spellman," Norm explained, "my surname is Spellman."
That made sense.
"I thought it was all a childhood fantasy," Norm said, clearly excited, "but the noise, what you did ... wait ... I know this ... it's called Apparating."
Draco looked very unhappy, Harry was just stunned.
"There's no such thing as magic," Jake said.
"You're surrounded by it," Harry said and decided to stand up again. "This place is infused with it. Which begs the question, how did I do that without my wand?"
He pulled Draco to his feet and shared a look with his husband. It only took a few moments to gain consent.
"Look," Harry said, "this place is magic and we are wizards, but we still don't know how we got here or why. I don't know how I Apparated; I shouldn't be able to do it without a wand."
"Oh, by Merlin," Draco said, interrupting what Harry had been about to say, "these bodies, they are wands."
Harry turned to Draco to find that his husband was studying the inside of one wrist very carefully. When Draco held out the limb to Harry he looked and he realised there was a very strange scar on the pale blue skin. It was wavy and fine. Harry looked at his own wrist and he was even more shocked to find what looked like the faint imprint of a feather.
"Unicorn hair," he said staring back at Draco's scar, "phoenix feather," he added and held out his own.
Someone had designed their Avatars not only as vessels for their consciousnesses, but to take advantage of Pandora's magical power. Draco was right; their bodies were wands.
"Wingardium leviosa," he said and pointed at Norm.
The man lifted gently off the ground.
"Bloody hell," was about all Harry could think to say.
"Wow," Norm said as Harry lowered him back to the ground.
"How did you do that," Jake demanded.
"Magic," Harry repeated what Draco had said earlier; "it's real and until you believe that this discussion is going nowhere."
Jake looked very unsure and rebellious, but Neytiri placed a hand on his arm. She was looking at them in a much more speculative fashion.
"Ewya has many unexplainable things, my Jake," she said; "we should allow them to show us the truth."
From the looks of it Jake still didn't like it, but the man relaxed slightly at least.
"We should return to the lab," Harry said; "there might be answers there."
It was obvious Jake was some kind of leader and Harry knew they were going to have to convince him what they were saying was true. Given all the magic around he hoped it wouldn't be too hard, but he was as desperate for answers as Jake. He and Draco were in the future on a different planet and it just didn't make sense.
"If you try and hurt..." Jake started to say.
"We're not going to hurt anybody," Draco interrupted, "we don't even know what is going on. This place is as fantastical to us as Harry disappearing and reappearing is to you."
"We'd like to know what's going on too," Harry added.
It took a little while longer of Jake and Neytiri talking to each other without actually saying anything (an exercise in body language that was very impressive) before the pair finally looked at them again.
"We will go back," Neytiri said, "and then you will explain."
Harry just nodded; there wasn't else he could do.
* * *
It was more dumb luck than proper investigation that brought them answers. Back in the lab Jake and the others let him and Draco look around, but nothing seemed familiar. It was only as Harry lifted the top off a very futuristic looking container which was connected to the Muggle style computers that he saw anything he recognised.
"Draco," he said, looking down at the shimmering liquid inside the vessel, "does this look like a penseive?"
Draco went to walk towards him, but Harry made the mistake of putting his hand too close to the liquid. He felt a magical shift and then the familiar feeling of falling as he was dragged into a memory. Given that he'd had a lot more practice with such things since the first time as a child he adjusted quickly and looked around. He realised he was still in the lab in which he had been standing, only it was very much more active.
"Whoever you are, I am making this memory so that whoever finds this lab will understand the importance of what is in it," a man in a white coat suddenly began to speak. "Since you are seeing it, I can only assume my team and I did not make it back here."
The man had Asian features, but spoke with a perfect English accent.
"I am Dr Narita and I am the head of the magical team on Pandora. We can feel the magic in Pandora rising up," the man continued to speak, "and we don't know what is going to happen, so we are shutting everything down for safety. However, I am getting ahead of myself."
The man walked over to where the two gurneys in the centre of the room were half uncovered.
"These Avatars represent years of work," Dr Narita said. "When the magical community realised the potential on Pandora we had no choice but to come here. We had hoped these two young men would help to bring peace to this troubled world, but events have been taken out of our hands. The Avatar on my right is Harry Potter; yes the Harry Potter and that on the left is Draco Malfoy, his husband. Their bodies have been held in stasis in hopes of a cure for a century and a half, but it became clear we would never be able to help them. This is the closest we could come."
Dr Narita moved around to the head of Harry's gurney.
"We used the Muggles' Avatar technology to create these bodies and then used a spell to transfer Mr Potter and Mr Malfoy's sleeping consciousnesses to them at a very early stage of development. They matured on the trip and we have been preparing them to be awakened since. It has taken us a long time to make sure the brain patterns align correctly and we could not risk waking them before. We only decanted them yesterday. We have placed them both into magical stasis while we shut the lab down. They will awaken at the first touch of a magical person."
Dr Narita looked up, staring at a point in space as if looking out to Harry.
"I'm sorry I cannot go into more detail, but we have no time," the doctor said. "Our records have been transmitted to Earth. These two young people represent the best hope for a future for Wizarding kind. Earth is too small for us, many magical creatures have been pushed to extinction and Pandora offers us all hope. Please look after them."
Then the memory ended and Harry found himself back in the real lab.
"Who touched us?" he asked as he assimilated the information. "To wake us up, who touched us?"
Jake frowned, but spoke anyway: "I touched Draco and he touched you."
"What is it?" Draco asked.
"What we're feeling is real," Harry said, "he's magical, like us. The stasis on our bodies was designed to release at the first contact with a magical person."
Draco appeared shocked, but nodded in acceptance.
"What did you find out?" Jake all but demanded.
"We were right, our old bodies are dead," Harry decided it was best to answer the question. "They transferred us to these because they couldn't heal us. We were brought here because of Pandora's magical potential; they hoped we could help bring peace, whatever that means."
"You're a little late," Norm said.
Harry had no idea what that meant, but he was kind of glad.
"What did you mean by he's magical?" Jake sounded less hostile now at least one of his questions had been answered.
"You're magical, like us," Draco said; "a wizard. It's how you could see the door, how you woke us up."
"I'm no wizard, I'm a marine," Jake replied.
"It might have been something to do with transferring to that body," Harry suggested. "Maybe you weren't before, but you are now, honestly. You wouldn't have been able to see the door or wake us unless you were."
Jake looked at Neytiri, apparently not comfortable with that at all.
"Let's get back outside," Jake decided and Harry chose not to argue; the air in the base tasted completely wrongs after being out in the open air.
* * *
"We must take them to Mo'at," Neytiri said in Na'vi once they were outside.
"I do not understand why they think I am like them," he replied, looking over their two newcomers.
"The power of Ewya runs through us all," Neytiri told him and placed a hand on his chest, "perhaps they feel it. Mo'at will know."
Jake nodded again. If anyone could explain what was going on it would be their Tsahik.
Norm let them go, promising to update Jake on anything they found in the lab.
Jake was beginning to realise why Neytiri had been so exasperated with him when he first arrived on Pandora, because leading two untrained Avatars through the jungle was painful. They'd taken a human transport back to the base camp Norm and the others had closer to the hometree, but from there they had had to walk. Because they looked like him he kept forgetting that the two newcomers had never been outside before. He lost count of the number of times he turned around to find them staring off at things he had become used to.
"I'm so sorry," he said to Neytiri as they walked, "I finally understand how patient you were with me."
She smiled widely at him for that.
"Like children," was all she said.
It took them twice as long to reach the hometree as if should have done. Of course most of the tribe appeared as soon as they saw strangers approaching.
"My mother," Neytiri greeted Mo'at as she came out to meet them.
"I see you, My Daughter and JakeSully," Mo'at gave the traditional greeting, "who is with you?"
Jake beckoned to the two wizards, even if most of his brain still scoffed at that description.
"These are HarryPotter and DracoMalfoy," Neytiri introduced. "This is Mo'at, our Tsahik."
Jake saw Malfoy repeating the description quietly.
"Come forward," Mo'at said and Potter was the first to move.
"Pleased to meet you," he said, offering his hand in just the way Jake would have expected, "sorry about all the fuss."
Potter let his hand drop when Mo'at just stared at him. Jake has been on the end of that stare, he was impressed when Potter didn't so much as flinch.
"Where did they come from?" Mo'at asked in Na'vi, looking at Neytiri.
"A hidden room within the Sky People's base," Neytiri explained. "The door was hidden from my sight until Jake discovered it. These two were within..."
At that point Neytiri stumbled and Jake couldn't blame her, he didn't think there was a word for stasis in Na'vi.
"Suspended in time," he decided to help and do his best at a description.
Mo'at stared at their guests again and, while Potter seemed to take the scrutiny in his stride, Malfoy looked tense. Jake couldn't work out if it was because Potter failed to comprehend the gravity of the moment or he was simply supremely confident. Malfoy clearly got it.
"How is this possible?" Mo'at asked and for once she was looking at Jake rather than Neytiri.
"Not by our science," Jake replied.
"They say they have magic," Neytiri offered, although she sounded dubious.
The Na'vi had many beliefs, but what the two new Avatars claimed to be was out of the park even for them.
"I like it here," Potter suddenly said with a huge grin and promptly sat down.
Malfoy was stepping round and in front of him in a heartbeat.
"Harry," Malfoy said, crouching down.
Potter just smiled at his husband in a way that made him look completely stoned and then stared up at the hometree. Malfoy took hold of his chin and made Potter look at him.
"Something's wrong," Malfoy said and turned to Jake.
"Did he touch anything, eat anything on the way here?" Jake asked and crouched down as well.
Potter's pupils were hugely dilated.
"No," Malfoy said, "we stayed away from everything you told us to. He was fine until just now."
"He looks stoned," Jake observed.
"And what could have caused that?" Malfoy sounded annoyed, but Jake knew worry when he saw it.
Malfoy was very like Neytiri in that respect.
"I did not see anything as we walked which could have caused this in one of the People," Neytiri entered the conversation. "Could it be the differences?"
Jake would have replied, but Mo'at cleared her throat behind them. He looked at Neytiri, who looked at him then at her mother and they both stood up and out of the way. Malfoy was slower to move, but when Mo'at stared at him in that way she had, the wizard eventually moved.
Mo'at crouched down and Potter smiled the smile of the truly off their heads. For a while they stayed that way, staring at each other as if the rest of the universe didn't exist.
"Strange," Mo'at said very quietly.
Then she reached out and placed her hand flat on Potter's forehead.
Jake grabbed Malfoy's arm before he could interfere.
Mo'at closed her eyes and Potter stilled completely, gaze staring ahead at nothing. It was a moment that seemed to go on forever, before Potter blinked one, then twice before pulling back and shaking his head.
"What happened?" he asked as Mo'at took her hand back and stood up.
"Nothing that should bring worry," Mo'at said and then turned to look at Malfoy.
She considered them both and then nodded as if she was satisfied with something.
"They are welcome," Mo'at said. "Daughter, JakeSully you will teach them our ways."
"Mother, what..?" Neytiri tried to ask.
"It is the will of Eywa," was all Mo'at said and walked back towards the hometree.
"Well I guess that's it then," Jake said and looked at the two wizards.
He had hoped for more information, but it didn't look as if Mo'at was interested in that. That would be up to him and Neytiri. Potter was still looking utterly confused, so Jake took pity on him.
"You hungry?" he asked, since it seemed like a good way forward.
"Starving," Potter admitted, "but, um, what did just happen?"
"Beats me," Jake replied, but then he was used to that by now.
* * *
"Are you okay?" Draco asked as they followed Jake and Neytiri away from the very strange meeting.
"I feel fine," Harry replied, "but I'd still like to know what happened."
"What was it like from your point of view?" Draco asked.
"Well I began to feel strange when we walked in here," he said as he thought about it, "and then everything went hazy before I found myself sitting on the ground."
"You looked like a house elf on Butterbeer," Draco revealed. "You feel alright now though?"
Harry nodded and then frowned, glancing around.
"I think I might have been magic drunk," he said after thinking about it for a while. "It's just so overwhelming."
Harry didn't think Draco was convinced, but nothing else came to mind. Pandora didn't seem to be affecting Draco in quite the same way, but then Draco had never really lived in an environment where there weren't huge amounts of magic.
"Yes, well if it happens again tell me before you end up sitting on the floor, okay?"
"Yes, boss," Harry said and smiled.
He was too excited by everything to be worried for long.
* * *
So much had happened that Jake had almost forgotten his own problems. It was only as he watched Neytiri smiling in wonder as Draco demonstrated the whole making things float trick again and he felt a tiny ripple of energy, like an echo, that his mind flicked back to Tommy.
"Neytiri," he said, interrupting the two wizards talking to his mate (he still couldn't really believe the wizard part, but then it always took a while to get things in to his thick skull), "will you be alright with our guests if I go see Mo'at?"
Neytiri reached out and touched him gently on the arm.
"Do you wish me to come with you?" she asked.
"No, that's okay," he said, "I'll be fine."
The look she gave him was a definite 'are you sure' so he inclined his head slightly to let her know it was true. Besides she seemed to be enjoying Harry and Draco so much with their strange abilities.
Mo'at was waiting for him when he reached the hometree.
"I see you JakeSully," she said.
"I see you," he said in return and she turned, disappearing into the bowels of the tree.
Taking a deep breath Jake followed. Neither of them spoke again until they were seated opposite each other surrounded by the warmth of the tree.
"For a spirit to live it must want life," Mo'at told him. "Sometimes a spirit forgets this want. You are Awtirea, but half you spirit is lost in the darkness. We must find him and help him remember."
When she placed her queue on the floor, joining with the heart of the hometree, Jake did the same. His mind spiralled away into the depths in a way he had only experienced once before when his mind was transferred to his Avatar permanently. He felt like he was falling, but a firm hand on his arm brought him back. Opening his eyes he saw Mo'at, but in a strange double awareness he was slowly getting used to, he could see more as well.
"Look into your soul, JakeSully," Mo'at told him. "Find that which you have lost."
Jake's mind was empty. He and Tommy had grown apart so long ago, he wasn't sure he had even known his brother at the end. They had been strangers. Nothing came to him and he felt empty. In the end he looked further back, bringing up memories of when they had been boys. He remembered the joy in Tommy's face when he explained something and Jake actually got it and the patience when he had to explain it all over again.
They had been so different and yet so alike at their core. That was what he latched onto, the feeling he followed.
It wasn't like when Mo'at had done whatever she did the first time he had come to her, there was no sudden flash of recognition, but he did start to sense something. It was faint at first, so faint that he wasn't sure if it was just his imagination. Yet, as he concentrated it started to grow.
In one way it was the hardest thing he had ever done, in another the easiest.
That feeling became his entire focus and he reached for it with everything he had.
It became more and more resolved, clearer and clearer until he felt as if it was right there in front of him. He stretched out his hand, even though he knew it was in his head and presence burst over him. It was Tommy, there was no doubt in his mind, and shock lanced through him. At first he thought it was his own, but then he realised it was Tommy's. Almost as soon as he had taken this in the shock lanced into fear and something snapped.
He came back to his body breathing hard and shaking.
"JakeSully look at me."
He stared into Mo'at eyes and blinked as his awareness tried to centre in reality again.
"I see you," he managed to say eventually.
Then everything that had happened barrelled into his head.
"He's afraid," Jake said, confused. "He was afraid of me."
It didn't make sense to him. They might have drifted apart, but they had never had any reason to fear each other.
"Death of the body is a frightening experience, JakeSully."
Jake shook his head.
"It's more than that."
He tried to explain what he was feeling, but he couldn't quite explain it to himself. Staring off into the distance he did his best to understand.
"Are you well?" Mo'at asked him when he said no more.
Looking back into her concerned gaze he nodded.
"Yes," he said, "thank you. I need to think."
Detaching himself from the hometree Jake stood up and walked out. He had to figure out what he had seen.