CHAPTER 11 DIAGON ALLEY The next week went by quietly. Mr. Dursley left every morning to go looking for work or to visit his sister Marge. Mrs. Dursley did her daily annoyance of Mrs. Weasley by giving her advice while Molly did most of the work. Dudley hung around Harry, Ron and Ginny usually running in the morning and sometimes swimming, playing chess or other games in the game room. When the twins came home they would usually go to Dudley's room and ask him all about the computer or the other muggle things that seemed interesting. They were especially interested in e-mail and instant messaging. They were able to get the television working after a couple of days. Ron spent a lot of time in the living room fascinated by the shows, especially the short ones between programs. He was very tempted to try the muggle toothpaste that makes your breath fresher or that gum that makes everything freeze. On Thursday Harry was summoned to aunt Petunia's room. "You wanted to see me?" Asked Harry when he entered the Dursleys' sitting room. "Um yes please sit," she started "I have a bit of a problem...well I'll just come out and say it. I need some money and your uncle doesn't have any to spare at the moment and I just can't ask that Weasley woman that would be just unbearable." "What do you need money for?" Asked Harry. "Well you see, um.. Dudley's birthday is Monday and it's bad enough that we had to take him out of the only home he's ever known and away from his friends. He won't be going back to Smeltings in September and his clothes are all getting too baggy on him." Sobbed Petunia. "Why should I give you money when you stay in here everyday while everyone waits on you and you don’t lift one finger to help whatsoever." Asked Harry. "I um...you have servants for that and Mrs. Weasley." Said Petunia. "There is enough to do here that everyone can pitch in and help. If you'd come out of your room long enough you'd see that even Ron, Ginny and I do things like pick vegetables, set the table, and de-gnome the garden. Whatever needs to be done." Replied Harry. "I just thought you did everything with magic." Petunia sobbed, "I don't know how to fit in." "Just ask Molly what you can do to help." Said Harry "I'll make a deal with you. If you start pitching in around the house, and stop making the elves wait on you hand and foot, I'll have someone take you shopping and maybe give you some extra spending money as well." Harry wasn't just going to hand her money, he may be soft-hearted but he wasn't brain-dead, besides the Dursley's may have been mean to him but they did give a place to live for the last 14 1/2 years of his life. Harry left to go talk to Molly. He told her about his aunt and to make sure that Petunia does her fair share of work. He also asked if they could all go shopping in Diagon Alley and if she could find someone to take his aunt shopping in muggle London. She told him she would see what she could do and that she might write to Professor McGonagal to see if she could send the book list early that way they could get their shopping done while they were there. At supper that night in which Petunia helped to make, an owl soared into the kitchen and landed on Molly's shoulder. She took the parchment from the bird's leg and read it. Dear Mrs. Weasley I agree with idea of getting the children's school supplies early, it will be less expected. I have written down all of what's needed. You will still receive the official letter in August. The O.W.L. results have been keeping me busy, but should be out by next week. I'll also sent a letter to Miss Granger, whom will want to join you I'm sure. Regarding the other task, I have sent word to Remus Lupin since I know he's experienced in dealing with muggles, he said he would meet you in the Leaky Cauldron at 9:00 tomorrow morning. Sincerely, Minerva McGonagall The following morning Harry got up, grabbed a change of clothes, showered and dressed. He stood in front of the mirror trying to tame his unruly locks. "I believe it's a lost cause dear." Said the mirror. Harry went down to the kitchen and was surprised to see Ron already devouring his breakfast. Harry passed Ron and went to sit across from him. Ron look as though he had spent some time dressing and combing his hair which was immaculate instead of haphazardly done. Harry shot Ron a knowing look and grinned. "What!" Asked Ron through a mouthful of eggs. "Nothing." Said Harry trying not to laugh. Dudley was also at the table early this morning. He diet was going very well, the weight loss was now a lot less drastic but he had gone down at least four sizes of pants though he was still rather large. Ginny entered the kitchen and quickly sat beside Ron pulling the plate of scrambled eggs toward her and scooped some on her plate. "What smells so funny?" She said as she leaned toward Ron. "It's you, what are you wearing?" Ron turned red, "It's my aftershave I got from the twins." As he said this tiny amounts of smoke emanated from Ron's face and neck followed by a soft pop. Harry, Dudley, and Ginny all burst out laughing. "I think you better shave again." Harry said while holding his aching stomach. "Whaat!" Yelled Ron finding the long red beard trailing from his chin. "I'm going to kill them!" he yelled as he got up and ran from the room. "I wonder when he's going to learn not to take anything from those two." said Harry. "Oh it wasn't Fred and George," laughed Ginny "I added some super grow hair tonic to his aftershave." Dudley snorted in his milk. "I'll have to remember to keep my eye on you." Laughed Harry. Everyone was soon gathered in the kitchen waiting to leave. The discussion on how they were going to travel last night took a very long time. They discussed going by car, but Petunia didn't drive and Harry was still too nervous to attempt it. In the end they decided to go by floo although Petunia was very reluctant. Dudley however, was eager to attempt a wizard’s way of travel. Since both the Potter house and the Leaky Cauldron had larger fireplaces, Molly decided that Petunia and Ron should travel together because Harry had a tendency to get lost or fall on his face. Harry was to follow, then Ginny and Dudley flooed with Molly. They all went to the front foyer. Ron took a handful of powder. He told Petunia to close her eyes and mouth and keep her elbows tucked in. He threw the powder into the fire upon grabbing Petunia's arm and saying "Leaky Cauldron" as he pulled her into the flames. With a scream and a whoosh they were gone, Harry went next. Upon arriving he fell out at the Leaky Cauldron and would have hit the floor if it weren't for Ron holding a shaking Petunia. "Harry um.. Could you help me here?" Said a strangled Ron "She won't let go and she's starting to cut off the blood supply to my head." Harry began to laugh; his aunt had plastered herself to Ron in shock. "It's okay Aunt Petunia you can let go now. It's all over." Said Harry trying to pull her off of Ron. They got out of the way just in time. With a loud pop, Ginny and Dudley emerged from the fireplace and landed on the floor. Unfortunately Ginny landed first. Dudley broke out in a fit of laughter. "Dud will you get off of her." Said Harry; more concerned with the fact he didn't like anyone that close to her, than the obvious weight factor. "Sorry,” apologized Dudley "I didn't squish you did I?" He asked worriedly as he pulled himself up. He put out a hand to help her up, but Harry reached out and grabbed her arms and lifted her up. "You okay?" Harry asked with concern while looking into her eyes. "Um yeah I'm okay." She answered while thinking he had the most amazing eyes. "That was amazing!" said Dudley "I can't wait to do it again." "I think you'll be able to go by yourself next time Dud." Harry replied. After Mrs. Weasley had done a cleaning spell on all of them they made their way out of the private room to the main part of the pub. "Ron, Ginny, Harry!" They heard a familiar voice yell. They turned in time to see a bushy haired figure running towards them, it was Hermione. She gave them all hugs. Harry noticed the blush on Ron's face as Hermione had given him probably the longest hug of all three. "Hello Mrs. Weasley." She said while smiling. "Hello dear and please do call me Molly." She replied. "Aren't you going to introduce us Harry?" Said, a finally recovered Petunia. "Aunt Petunia this is one of my best friends Hermione Granger, her parents Mr. and Mrs. Granger and you remember Professor Lupin." Harry introduced. "Everyone this is my aunt Petunia Dursley." "My parents are muggles as well Mrs. Dursley." Said Hermione as she reached her hand out for Mrs. Dursley to shake. Petunia shook Hermione's hand and then her parents' hands as well. She then turned to Remus, "You were at my sister's wedding weren't you?" As she took the hand he offered. "Yes I was vary close friends with James and Lilly." Surprised she even cared enough to notice. When all the introductions were made they went to the entrance of Diagon Alley. Remus tapped the brick wall with his wand. "Wow!" Said Dudley as the bricks slid out of the way to form an archway for them to pass. Harry remembered when he was first brought here by Hagrid; he thought that the look on Dudley's face must have been similar to his own. They first made their way to Gringott's to get some gold from their accounts to buy what they needed. Harry, Ron, Hermione, Remus and Molly all went with the goblin to the vaults, telling Petunia that if she didn't like the floo she really wouldn't like barreling along at top speed, kilometers beneath the surface. "Could I go?" Ask Dudley, wanting to experience everything about this world that was so much unlike his own. "Yeah okay Dud, just hang on and don't wander off. Goblins don't care much for people." Replied Harry. "Okay." Dudley said looking around at the bank and all the goblins. They reached the Weasley vault first. Molly went in after the goblin opened it. "Oh my, where did all this come from?" She asked looking at the goblin. Remus intervened "Well you do get a spending account for anything that you might need while you are executor for Harry, so a portion was advanced to your vault." He explained. "I don't want any gold for taking care of Harry. Harry is like one of my own..." Molly said before Harry interrupted. "Molly, you and Arthur do so much for me and now with the expenses of the house you are just going to have to take it. I'm sorry, but the job of taking care of me pays so you'll just have to use it, like it or not." Harry said firmly with a smile. Molly grabbed Harry and hugged him in one of her motherly, bone crushing hugs. "I'll have you know that you won't always get away with talking to me like that." she smiled at Harry with watery eyes. The group made their way to Ron and Hermione's vaults. Ron was so overjoyed; Harry had to tell him that the goblins might get a little upset if he made snow angles in his gold. The next stop was Harry's, where he took out what he figured he would need plus a bit extra. Last they went to the Potter vault, there Harry filled a bag for Remus to take Petunia shopping and another to take home for future expenses so that he could give some to his aunt if she was going to continue to cooperate. Harry exchanged the two bags into muggle money then they left Gringottts Bank. "Where to first?" Asked Molly. Remus looked at Petunia, "Do you want to look around here for a bit or do you want to go to muggle London right away?" "How about you give me a quick tour then we can go." Petunia replied. "Dudley why don't you stay with the rest of them, it will probably be more fun for you." "Okay." Responded Dudley. He didn't like shopping with his mum besides there was so much he wanted to see here anyway. "Are we going to see Fred and George's shop while we're here?" He asked Molly. "That would be a good idea," said Molly "Dudley can stay with the twins while you all get measured and fitted for your new robes, since you've all grown so much." Upon entering 'Weasley Wizarding Wheezes' where they found Fred behind the counter "Hi mates, mum, Ginny, Hermione." He nodded to the group. "Fred can you keep an eye on Dudley while we go to Madam Malkins?" Molly asked. "Sure mum, he can help me out a bit." Fred smiled. Molly shot him a warning look. "Don't worry mum he'll be fine." "Oh alright, we'll come back when we are finished." Said Molly. As they were leaving they heard Dudley say, "This place is amazing, so what's this." "Don't touch that!" Hollered Fred What ever it was they didn't find out, Molly rushed them out the door and down the street without so much as a backwards glance. At Madam Malkin's they were all fitted for new school robes. Ron was elated on not having second hand, but he was still reluctant on spending his gold. He kept asking how much, and then he would take forever trying to decide if he really needed it. "Hurry up already! I know you have your own money now but I will still pay for your robes and books. Just hurry up and choose your dress robes." Molly scolded. Ginny didn't pick any dress robes; since she had that beautiful gown that Harry bought her recently this summer. Ron finally decided on a navy blue set, that were simple yet elegant. "Very popular style, a classic." Said Madam Malkin. Harry tried on some in deep blue with silver piping and then a set of robes that were a newer style of deep green with pale green accents. Harry could have sworn the lighter green was the same shade as Ginny's gown. "I think this is your best choice." Said Madam Malkin "The blue did look good on you but with those eyes, green is definitely your color." Hermione didn't get any dress robes either, after Ginny told her about the dress Harry had bought for her, she went shopping with her mother and got a dress as well. When everyone was finished they headed back to pick up Dudley. They walked into the store and saw several people standing toward the front laughing and applauding. As the got closer they could see a very large furry bunny, then with a pop there stood Dudley bowing to his audience. "Fred Weasley!" Yelled Molly "How dare you exploit this muggle boy!" "It's okay Mrs. Weasley I volunteered to demonstrate some items for their customers. It was fun!" Said Dudley. "Well... as long as you agreed to it and you're alright." Molly said looking confused as to why someone would willingly put their lives in the twins' hands. They said their good-byes to Fred. George was out with Lee Jordan for the afternoon while Fred ran the shop. It was decided that the children would go to Flourish and Blots to get their books. Molly passed out the list of all the books they would be needing. Ron, Harry and Hermione had to get their books for the advanced subjects they would continue to use for both 6th and 7th years. Harry looked at his list: Advanced Transfiguration, Advanced Defense Against the Dark Arts, Advanced Care of Magical Creatures, Advanced Charms, Advanced Herbology, Advanced Potions and Magical Maintenance and Living. "Advanced Potions?" Said Harry. "Yes dear," replied Molly "Professor McGonagall said you managed an Outstanding in potions, although the reason the scores are not out yet is because Professor Snape is trying to get a appeal of that grade. She also said that the Ministry rarely changed any grades that they have given." Harry was both relieved and disappointed, he was glad for the fact that to be an Auror, you are required to take Advanced Potions, however that meant he had to deal with two more years of Snape. "What do you have Ron?" Asked Harry. "Transfigurations, D.A.D.A., Care of Magical Creatures, Charms, Potions, Herbology, and what's... Magical Maintenance and Living?" Ron asked. "It's to teach witches and wizards to be able to live on their own and take care of things." Said Hermione. "What does that mean?" Asked Ron. "They teach you things like cooking and cleaning spells and how to balance your finances." Answered Hermione. "That's true dear, but they also teach things about relationships and taking care of your family." Added Molly "Oh I wish I could see Ron changing a diaper." Molly laughed. "Relationships?" Harry asked. Hermione leaned to whisper in Harry's ear, "Sexual Education,” as Harry's face turned a bright red. As they were picking out their books Dudley was fascinated by the book, 'Fascinating Beasts and Where to Find Them Molly saw this and when she went to pay she told the wizard to add a copy. They finished getting their books and after prying Hermione away, they went to another store to get new quills, parchment, potion supplies and to stock up on some supplies of sweets. When completing their shopping they started to head back towards the Leaky Cauldron. On the way they passed Quality Quidditch Supplies. "Wow Harry look at the new line of brooms." Said Ron excitedly. The new line 'Shades of Nimbus' were all lined up in the window. The brooms were the same as the Nimbus 2005's yet they came in multitude of colors. Ron hurried inside to ask the cost. "What do you want to bet, he buys the orange one." Said Ginny. Sure enough a few minutes later Ron emerged with a long package under his arm. "What?" asked Ron when he saw everyone starring at him. "Orange?" They all asked, even Molly. "Nope, neon blue." Ron smiled and began walking, with the others following and shaking their heads. In the Leaky Cauldron the decided to order lunch. There was no sign of Remus or Petunia. After lunch Molly left a message with Tom, the innkeeper, to give to Remus before they flooed home. ***************************************************************************************** A.N. Well tell me what you think. I hope you don’t mind Dudley liking the demonstration of pranks but in different elements people act different and I think this was his way of grabbing the spotlight.I know this was probly one of my duller chapters but it will get better I promise. Is it worth continuing? Please Please Please let me know. I’m begging now. Like I said the more rewiews the faster I get new chapters up. No one reviewed for last Chapter on this site So if you want me to continue on this site review me.
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