I have always thought that a lot is left out of the books about Dudley. What did he see when the dementors attacked him? Why did he put that cup of tea out for Harry? Did he try to change himself...
Rating: K+ I think, slight bad language by Dudley.
Disclaimer: I have no rights to these characters, they being the sole property of JK Rowling and am making no money from said story.
I have always thought that a lot is left out of the books about Dudley. What did he see when the dementors attacked him? Why did he put that cup of tea out for Harry? Did he try to change himself because of it?
For the next two days, I hardly left the house, I was too busy reading this book. Who would have thought it, dragons, goblins, unicorns, all these things were real and living in close proximity to our world and we never knew. This was better than one of those action games I used to spend all my time playing, or those shoot-em-up films. I couldn't remember that much history from school to know if any dates of conflicts in their world matched with ours. School history lessons had been full of boring rubbish about farming and factories; this was a lot more interesting. But two days of just reading, and a running for a couple of hours, were getting to me, I needed to get outside and think.
Dad was slouched in an armchair, he'd been in the same chair watching TV since we arrived. He hadn't left the house, back in Little Whinging, he would have a least gone out to fetch a paper, even if he did use the car to go a couple of streets. Now he just sat there, drinking the endless cups of tea and flicking through the television channels endlessly. Mum was in the kitchen bringing him the latest in an almost continuous flow of teacups that seemed as important as his breath.
I called to them both that I was going out and didn't know how long I was going to be. I didn't bother to wait for an answer, Dad probably wouldn't have noticed World War III, unless it disrupted his flow of tea, and Mum would probably have warned her precious Duddikins to be careful. When would she realise I'd grown out of that name years ago? Probably when I had grandchildren of my own, then again maybe not.
I walked towards the beach, I hadn't really seen that side of the town yet, the runs I had taken had been through the streets near to the house. I hadn't felt further need to explore since the first day, I wasn't really exploring now, just following my feet, thinking about what I had read in the past couple of days. The magical world had its own official secrets act in action in the Statute of Secrecy, made in 1692. They were so ahead of our world at that time but in cutting themselves off and going into hiding they'd lost touch with the world. I could see that myself from the way that Professor Dumbledore had been dressed when he had arrived to pick up Harry hast year, robes. Honestly, nobody had dressed like that for hundreds of years.
I wondered if there was anything magical around this area, this wand helped me to see that hidden section of the library was there more to see than just that in this town? I stepped into a small newsagent that seemed to sell everything from newspapers to tacky souvenirs and sticks of seaside rock. I grabbed a bottle of water and pulled my wallet out to go and pay for it. What? Did the picture on that newspaper just move? I took my hand from my wallet and, and the paper looked normal, just seemed to be one of those foreign language papers that some shops stocked. I put my hand back in my wallet and it looked like a British paper, but with photo's that moved. 'The Daily Prophet' even sounded like a wizard paper, I picked it up and went to the counter.
"That'll be 3 Sickles and 5 Knuts, please, said the shopkeeper.
I looked at him, slightly bemused, then realised, he must think I was a wizard as I was buying the daily prophet; I got a five pound note from my wallet and passed it over the counter.
He raised his eyebrows and handed me my change.
"Thank you," I walked out of the shop, the paper under my arm. I found a shelter with a bench in it and sat down to read the Paper.
'It was now compulsory for all wizards to have their blood status confirmed. It had also been shown that muggle born witches and wizards had stolen the magic of a pure blood wizard.' Not really and news as such, these were just those sort of things that you would find in a Sunday paper, rubbish just to fill the pages and bulk the price up. How much had I paid for this anyway? How much was 12 Knuts? I checked how much I had in my wallet, trying to work out what I'd spent in the last couple of days. I'd probably spent about £1 today on my water and the paper. What was a Knut worth anyway?
“Anything of any interest in the paper?” asked a familiar voice. I looked up from my thoughts; it was that boy I’d walked into the other day. Justin was it?
“Not really, you want it?” I said, handing it in his direction, not really thinking about the ‘foreign language’ that the paper had appeared to be to me earlier. I didn’t give it much thought to the fact that he might not be able to read it.
“What utter rubbish,” he muttered under his breath, “stolen magic indeed. Who did they pay to write this? Hmm, Rita Skeeter, might know.”
“You’re a wizard?”
“Well, aren’t you? I saw you reading the Daily Prophet and assumed you were as well. I thought the paper was enchanted so Muggles couldn’t read it.” He looked at me suspiciously, a slight panic in his eyes. “Oh shit, I’ve been caught out by a snatcher,” he looked ready to run.
“What’s a snatcher?”
“What’s a snatcher? If you don’t mind me saying so, you seem remarkably uninformed excuse for a wizard. Don’t you know anything?”
“Not really. Just what I learned from the witch and wizard who brought us here a couple of days ago, and what Dumbledore told us when he picked up my cousin, Harry last summer. I have been reading a bit though and got some information from a squib neighbour of ours before we left.”
“Harry? Do you mean Harry Potter?”
“Why? What if I do?”
“I was in the same year as him. Different house though, he was Gryffindor, I was Hufflepuff, but we did have some classes together.”
“Oh! Right! Then yes I do mean Harry Potter, I’m Dudley Dursley, his cousin.”
“Blimey! That’s brilliant, I didn’t speak that much to him. But you must have spoken to him all the time when he was at home.”
“Not really, my favourite pastime until last summer was ‘Harry hunting’, me and my friends used to spend all of our time beating him up. That all changed though when he saved my life a couple of years ago.”
“What did he do?”
“Used a spell to get rid of a dementor that was attacking me. He got in loads of trouble for it apparently. ‘Using magic in the presence of a muggle,’ ‘under age magic,’ if I remember right, although he did get let off.”
“I remember that, there were a lot of kids who didn’t believe him that year, the daily prophet was calling him the boy who lied, saying it was all to try and draw attention to himself. Get publicity. They called him an attention seeker. I believed it a bit myself before I saw the excuse for a teacher that the Ministry of Magic had foisted upon us.”
“I remember Mrs. Figg saying something about that, what did she say the name was? Um, something?”
“Umbridge, a bigger ministerial sycophant you couldn’t have met. Thought that Fudge was Christ, Merlin, and the Buddha all rolled into one. Dumbledore by default was a dangerous rabble rouser who should be locked up. She tried on her first day to say that it was all in the name of improving educational standards. Utter rubbish. Cornelius Fudge, our then Minister for Magic was one of these ‘in his office for the good of the job types’, never did anything unless it made him look better.”
“Typical Politician, then. Never seen one of the do what they said they would!”
Justin began to fold the paper back up, in order to return it to me, then looked at it in a puzzled way, then back at me again. “Hang on, if you’re a muggle, how can you read the daily prophet? It’s got muggle protection charms on it and all sorts.”
“This!” I said, holding up the ‘wand’ that Dedalus had given me the first day. “Dunno how it works, but it’s been pretty cool so far, withdrew money from the ATM without a number. Showed me a whole hidden section of the local library and let me carry a book, that I’d have needed a shopping trolley to move, home in my wallet.”
“Crikey, can I have a look, that sounds like pretty high level magic?”
I handed the card to him and looking around, he removed a wand from his pocket and waved it over the card, muttering something under his breath. The card flickered several times, I couldn’t see properly, but I did notice that Justin seemed impressed.
“From what Harry taught me that card has several layers of enchantment on it. Protection, illusion, visionary and several I couldn’t hope to understand.”
“Protection, illusion, I understand, what do you mean by visionary?”
“That’s what enabled you to read the Daily Prophet, and see that hidden portion of the library, some things are hidden by illusions and muggle repelling charms. My parents are muggles and they can’t read the Daily Prophet, they think it’s some foreign paper, Russian, I think, my dad did mention ‘all those funny letters once!’”
“Sounds good, but why give me that ability? I appreciate it, I’ve been desperate to understand more about Magic since Harry saved my life, but my Dad would absolutely freak if he so much as saw an owl. He’s been terrified of them since Harry’s first year.”
“Why? Owls aren’t that scary are they?”
“No, not really, but you have to look at it from his point of view, mine as well at the time. I collected the post, when the first letter arrived for Harry. Mom and Dad looked at it, as if it were going to bite them. They burnt it in front of Harry and I. Over the next few days, more and more Hogwarts letters arrived for Harry, my Dad even boarded up the letter box. Mom kept finding them all over the place, there was even letters in eggs, straight from the shop. Then on a Sunday, Dad was in a particularly good mood as in his words ‘no post on Sunday,’ letters poured in down the chimney, broke all the boards he’d put over the letter box. He went ballistic. Within half an hour we were all in the car, just driving. Hours later he found some small backstreet hotel, and we went to book in for the night. There was a letter for Harry there already. We left and went to some small shack on a coastal island, nothing else there. Just after midnight, there’s this boom, boom, knock on the door and it falls in. A huge bloke, at least 9 foot tall walks in apologises and puts the door back up. He then tells Harry he’s a wizard and hands him a birthday cake, which I promptly acquired and began to eat, I was a fat greedy slob at this point. All I’d eaten all day was a packet of crisps. Dad protests that Harry will not be going this ‘crackpot school where some idiot,’ or something along those lines, ‘could teach him magic tricks.’ Mum whimpers and said they’d both decided when Harry was left on their doorstep after his Mum got blown up, that he wasn’t going to go there. She’d always told Harry and I that they’d died in a car crash and that was where Harry had got his scar. This giant gets very angry, says that Dumbledore is no crackpot and Hogwarts is the best school for Harry to learn magic. He then must have noticed me scoffing the cake, because I felt a burning pain in my bum and I’d grown a bloody pig’s tail.”
“Oh, blimey, that sounds funny, not for you I mean, getting a pigs tail and all, but I can just see Hagrid, that’s the giant bloke acting to someone insulting Dumbledore like that.”
“Oh it doesn’t finish there, Hagrid handed Harry his letter, and they both left taking the only boat with them. We had to wait till the next day at low tide to get back to the mainland, the walk nearly killed us. We had to take refuge on rock’s halfway back, when the tide came in.”
“Yeah, well you can see why Dad is afraid of owls, when we got home finally, about four o’clock in the morning, Harry was already there, and he’d been into London and got all his school books and an owl. He’d also got a train ticket to platform 9¾. We dropped Harry of at the station, Dad telling him best of luck finding his platform and I was taken to a private hospital to have the bloody tail removed before I started school. I’ve still got the scar.”
“I can see that he might gave a problem with owls then,
“Me as well at the time. Mum and Dad were petrified of anyone learning that Harry was a wizard and told the neighbours that he was going to ‘St Brutus’ School for Criminal Boys’, or something like that. The only neighbour that seemed to want to have anything to do with Harry after that was Mrs. Figg, a rather batty old lady, who kept a load of cats, but she didn’t try to be openly friendly with him, just kept an eye on him, even hiding him a couple of times from me and my gang when we were looking to duff him up. I since found out why, she’s a squib, she was watching Harry for Dumbledore. Although we didn’t find that out for years until after I’d been attacked by that dementor. I still have bloody nightmares about that.”
“I’m not surprised, it was bad enough when the invaded the quidditch pitch in the third year, they weren’t going after us, but their very presence was chilling. They nearly caused Harry’s death, made him fall of his broom. Dumbledore saved his life stopping him hitting the ground. I heard that Dumbledore was really angry with the minister for magic.”
“Harry never told me he’d been attacked by dementors.”
“You should be glad he was, that was the reason he asked Professor Lupin to teach him how to deal with dementors. He was really good at that spell, managed to get rid of several dementors at the end of the year. It’s not usually taught until the second year of your N.E.W.T.s.”
“What has some bloody frog gotta do with dementors?”
“Eh! Oh, N.E.W.T.s are the wizarding equivalent of A levels. Nasty Exhausting Wizarding Tests. Don’t suppose I’ll finish mine now. I’ll end up with A levels in History, Maths, Chemistry, Physics and Biology.”
“Bloody hell, you must be clever, I’m having trouble keeping up with just three.”
“That’s nothing, there was one girl at school who would have been taking twelve N.E.W.T.s, but unfortunately she was muggle born, so she’s probably gone into hiding somewhere. Hermione Granger, a friend of your cousins, she was in Gryffindor like him, although she could easily have been a Ravenclaw.”
“Now you’ve lost me again. What’s Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff or Slytherin got to do with how many exams you’re doing? Aren’t they the school houses or something?”
“Yeah, they are, but who and what you are decides your house. Those who are brave, go to into Gryffindor. Clever people go into Ravenclaw, those who tend to be loyal, get into Hufflepuff, and Slytherins tend to be sneakier. Some people think Slytherins are evil, but I don’t think that’s right. They tend to go with the choice that is best for them, be more self-motivated.”
“Wonder which house I’d’ve been in, I’m not brave, intelligent, particularly loyal, I’d probably have been in Slytherin.”
“You might have problems if you were, most Slytherins are pure or half blood and extremely prejudiced against muggleborns.”
“Just typical of me, I don’t bloody fit anywhere!”
“I wouldn’t worry, it was similar with me, I wasn’t sneaky or ambitious, particularly clever, I’m not brave, didn’t think I was loyal to anything, but eventually it was my loyalty to family and friends that got me into Hufflepuff. I was happy in Hufflepuff; I made good friends and got the support I needed.”
“err, the only thing I was loyal to, or committed to more like, I’m ashamed to say was making Harry’s life as miserable as possible. Mum and Dad called him a freak, practically starved him and I was openly encouraged to be the same. If the authorities ever found out about it, we’d all have been up on charges of child abuse. I’m sure Mum and Dad were convinced they could beat his ‘freakiness’ out of him, course they couldn’t! It was my bullying of Harry that the dementors showed me, I realised I was a horrible person. A bully. Prejudiced. I saw myself having no real friends; they just stuck with me to avoid being bullied by me. It made me want to change. I hope I have.”
“You seem a decent enough chap to me, a little bit uninformed, but trying to better yourself. Of course it was different for me, my parents were proud of the fact I was a wizard, they couldn’t tell that to our muggle neighbours, I was supposed to be going to Eton. We had a visit from Professor McGonagall who informed them I was a wizard and I’d got a place in Hogwarts. They were ever so pleased, even boasted to my cousins that I’d been offered a place at an exclusive boarding school that was by invitation only.”
Maybe if my parents had had that attitude, Harry and I could have been proper cousins, instead of each other’s worst nightmare, for a long time I was afraid of magic, it was Harry saving my life that made me realise it could be used positively instead of just negatively. It gave me the urge to better myself.”
“Seems to be working! Look you and I are in similar situations here, both been moved to a new school in our last year, got to do a lot of work to catch up, me more than you, but I’d like to be friends. We can help and support each other and I can tell you more about the magical world.”
“I’d like that, I never had a friend who wanted to be with me as me. As I said they just wanted to stay on the bully’s good side.”
“How about I come to meet you tomorrow, I’ll show you round the town and we can talk about school, both types of school, magic and muggle.”
“That would be great I live at... at..., oh damn, it’s a secret I can’t tell you where I live. I’ll meet you at that shop at 1 tomorrow, how does that sound?”
“Great! See you there.”
“Thanks. See you tomorrow.” I got up and started walking back to the house, pleased in the knowledge that I’d found a new friend.
Authors Note: Hope you liked this chapter, was a bit heavy on conversation, but it needed to be said.
Please review. Thank you to those people who have read and reviewed my story already, your appreciation is noted. I will try to update as fast as I can, but the muses, strike where they like.