Joined: 20 August 2008
Joined: 20 August 2008
Chapter Three: The Letter
Lily Evans Potter laughed as she and Harry washed the dishes together one afternoon two days later. Although there were house elves to do the work, she sometimes liked to do it herself. Harry was telling her about a prank Will had played on "Uncle" Padfoot only two days ago, when he and the children had stayed over at Sirius's house for the night.
"Oh my!" exclaimed Lily, the ends of her mouth quirked into a smile.
"Yea, and then Uncle Padfoot went into the bathroom; saw his "beautiful" black hair turned into an eccentric pink like Auntie Tonks's, and chased Will all over the house! It was so funny, mum! You should have been there!" exclaimed Harry, spilling dishwater all over the floor by accident. Strangely for a boy, he loved helping his mother out with the after meal dishes. It gave him an excuse to spend time with her alone.
"Oh, I wish I was there!" exclaimed Lily, "Harry dear, you're spilling dirty water all over the floor!" With her wand, Lily cleaned up the mess in a second.
"Mummy! Mummy! Mummy!" screamed six year old Emma, running down the stairs in distress and hugging Lily's legs. "Will took my doll!"
"William Henry Potter!" Lily called up the stairs. "You come right down this instant, young man!" Will, a cute mischievous kid who inherited his father's love for pranks, slowly came down the stairs.
"Yes, mother dearest?" he asked innocently. Lily gave him the look and he scowled. "Fine, I'll give her doll back!" he muttered. Emma squealed and followed him out of the kitchen.
Lily then turned to Harry. "Sweetie, why don't you now go upstairs now? We're done here and Anne wants me to take her to the library. I'll be back in a sec. Just look after Will and Emma and make sure they don't fight, okay?"
"Okay, mum! Don't worry. I'll keep Will in line!" said Harry with a grin. Lily smiled back. Harry was so reliable and such a big help with the last two. Although Emma wasn't mischievous, she always got into some kind of trouble with Will, who loved bossing her around because he was two minutes older. Anne, her honest shy daughter, was also reliable, but she was often busy reading one book or another, much like Lily had been when she was younger. Anne was highly smart and already started reading her mother's old school books, even though she was only eight. Basically, Anne was a replica of Lily, both on the outside and inside.
Harry was half his mother and half his father. He loved Quidditch and spent his evenings practicing with the snitch with James. He wanted to be a seeker in Hogwarts, like James had been. He also read quite a bit, and constantly asked his mother what books she would recommend. Although he tried his best to follow rules (like Lily), it seemed trouble went looking for him (like James). Many times, Lily received notes from the muggle elementary school Harry went to saying he was found on top of the kitchen roof, turned his teacher's hair blue, etc.
Harry and Anne were the closest of her four children, maybe because they were only one year apart. Although Anne didn't like Quidditch that much, she didn't mind flying sometimes with Harry, and Harry likewise spent time doing things that interested Anne.
Although Will was a prankster and an official member of the Marauders: Generation X, he didn't dare mess with Harry. Harry may have seemed like a pushover from the outside, but oh, if you played a prank on him, you were dead. Even then, Harry was a role model for Will, and they got along relatively well, although Will tried his best to give Anne a hard time, because of course, she was a girl. Sweet innocent Emma, on the other hand, got along with everyone (except sometimes Will). She lived in a world of fairy tales and loved all the stories of the Disney muggle princesses, which her mother had told her for bed time stories.
At 6:00 that evening, Lily was straightening out the living room when she saw the flames in the fireplace turning green. Oh good, James was back from work early today. Only 28 years old, he was the Head of the Auror Office in the Ministry for three years, and often worked odd hours along with his co-Auror, Sirius Black. It was the greatest ambition of James to one day become the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, like his father before him, his grandfather, great grandfather, and so on. Until one year ago, James's father, Henry Christopher Potter, had been the Head of the DMLE, but then retired, making his successor Amelia Bones, a kind but very strict woman who fit the job perfectly.
Lily was the Muggle Studies Professor at Hogwarts, and during the school year, instead of sleeping at Hogwarts in her private quarters like the other professors did, used the fireplace in Albus Dumbledore's office and came home every evening before dinner so that she could cook for her family, except when she had to grade exams late into the night. The 100 House Elves that worked for the Potters looked after the children until then.
"Hey pumpkin," greeted James, kissing Anne, who was reading a book on the couch, on the forehead.
"Hey daddy," she greeted, without taking her eyes off the book she had already read three times: The Wizard of Oz.
After giving Lily a quick hug and a kiss, James took out a white envelope from a pocket in his robes.
"This came for you today, Lils," he said, handing it to her. The Potters very rarely got muggle mail, so all the mail they did get was forwarded to James's desk in the ministry.
"Who could it be from?" thought Lily to herself. Turning the envelope over, she saw the return address: #4 Privet Drive. "Petunia?" she voiced in surprise. She hadn't heard from her "dear" sister for nine years. What had prompted Petunia to write now? Was everything okay at her home?
"Petunia? Your sister? Why'd she write to you?" asked James with astonishment too.
"Hmm, I don't know," said Lily, her brows furrowed and tentatively ripping open the envelope.
Don't think that just because I'm writing to you, I like you any better or anything. I still hate you. ("The feeling is mutual!" Lily thought)
No matter how much I hate doing this, I need your help. Today, something horrible happened, and it's your entire fault! ("Now what did I do!" thought Lily angrily)
My son, Dudley, and my daughter, Diana, showed signs of…of…freakishness! Yes, freakishness! Can you even imagine my horror and disgust? Dudley made a slice of pizza fly into his hand and Diana levitated dishes into the sink! I can recognize those signs, as you had shown similar ones before you were accepted into that…stupid freak school!
Vernon and I discussed this issue for an hour before coming to a decision. We don't want Dudley and Diana or their freakishness! I still have two younger children, Duncan and Delilah, and I won't let Dudley and Diana contaminate them. We were a normal family, and because of you, we're about to be ripped apart! But I won't let you ruin our lives any longer! Children or not, Vernon and I are hereby disowning Dudley John and Diana Elizabeth Dursley.
You may take them if you wish and raise them in your freaky ways. I really don't care. If you don't want them, we'll just leave them in the orphanage, and if the orphanage is too full, on the streets. Personally, I am not concerned one bit about what you do, as they are no longer my children, but orphans. Write me a reply back as fast as you can, because we do have lives we want to continue.
Joined: 20 August 2008
Chapter Four: A decision made
"Stupid Petunia! Stupid, heartless Petunia!" Lily raged, her face becoming pale and her lips throbbing with anger. James silently backed away. An angry Lily was never good to be around.
"How could Petunia and Vernon dislike their own children just because they are magical? It doesn't make any sense!" continued Lily with a deep frown.
"What happened, mum?" asked Anne, who was still on the sofa. Lily and James both jumped and turned around.
"Oh, nothing dear. Don't worry about it. Now, why don't you go upstairs to your room and continue reading your book there? Daddy and I have something important to discuss!"
Anne badly wanted to find out what upset her mother, but she knew better than to argue. Oh well, if it was something big, she would probably find out about it later anyway.
After Anne walked upstairs, Lily turned to James, tears suddenly forming in her beautiful emerald eyes.
"Lils, what's wrong? What happened?" asked James quietly, gathering her into a hug.
"Oh James, I hate Petunia! I hate her so much, more than I ever did, especially after reading this letter!" Lily sobbed into James's shirt.
"What did she do?" asked James softly. He had learned in the past that the best way to deal with Lily's emotions was to comfort her and talk to her slowly.
"Her children'they're wizards, James!" exclaimed Lily, finally drying her tears, "And'Petunia and Vernon'don't want them anymore!"
"What?? That's'completely ridiculous!" said James with shock, "May I see that letter?"
Lily silently handed him the letter and James read it, his face becoming angrier and angrier after each word. After he was done, he threw it down on the table and started pacing.
"How do Vernon and Petunia have the heart to do this?" said James in a loud voice, "Dudley and Diana are their own children!"
"James, Petunia can get pretty nasty when she dislikes something or someone, but I never knew she would be so cruel to her own children! And calling them orphans, that is going too far! As for Vernon, I never liked him from the start! He has no'feelings, and it would be just like him to throw his own children out!" cried Lily.
"What a pair!" thought James heatedly to himself.
"James, we'we have to take them in! Those poor darlings, they need us!" said Lily softly, her motherly instinct taking over. "Please! I can't bear to think of them in an orphanage or even worse, on the streets!"
James turned to her, a hurt look on his face.
"Lily, did you really think I would say no? Of course we're going to adopt them. There's no need to plead like that! No niece or nephew of James Potter is ever going to find themselves in the orphanage!"
"I'm sorry, I guess I got a little carried away. Oh, I'm so happy!" Lily cried out, rushing into James's arms. "We have to tell the kids. They'll be so glad they will have someone else to play with!"
"Yes, but first write a reply to Petunia so she doesn't do anything drastic before we get to Surrey," said James.
"Yes, of course!" said a very relieved Lily. On the way to the owlery, her mind went to her nephew and niece. How did Dudley and Diana look like? What were their personalities like? What were their favorite foods? "We must decorate rooms for them before they get here," thought Lily, her creative mind taking over.
In the owlery, Lily walked over to the little desk in the corner of the room, took out a piece of parchment that had wands as the border (just to bug Petunia), dipped her quill in some royal blue ink, and wrote.
First of all, all the feelings you feel towards me are completely mutual! Second of all, I honestly don't know how much more horrible you can get. What kind of mother gives up her children for such a stupid heartless reason? You seriously have to change your priorities soon! Mum and dad would have been ashamed if they knew what you were doing.
Anyhow, of course I will take in Dudley and Diana as soon as possible, so don't you dare do anything drastic before I come, or you'll have to answer to my wand, or James's for that matter! If you think I'm scary when I'm angry, just wait until you encounter James!
I'm coming tomorrow morning at 8:00, whether you like it or not, so you'd better be ready! Oh, and Dudley and Diana are not orphans, and never will be as long as either James or I are alive! Even if we ever die early, there are plenty of people we know that would take them in and raise them as their own children, something you're not capable of doing! So don't you dare do anything to them before now and 8:00, or else you will have to answer to me, because they are now my children!
Three hours later, Lily was finished decorating her niece's and nephew's bedrooms. She had just come home from Hogsmeade with Dudley's and Diana's new furniture, and with her wand's aid and the many household spells she knew, it hadn't taken long to finish.
The Potter Manor was five floors high, with six spacious bedrooms each on the second and third floors, and two medium-sized bedrooms on the first floor. The entire fourth floor was the library, and incidentally both Lily's and Anne's favorite room of the house, even including their own bedrooms.
Finally, the fifth floor held the drawing room, an indoor magical swimming pool, and a magical fitness center.
The very large finished attic was the servants' quarters, also called the house elves' quarters. The Potters believed in equal rights for house elves and looked after their own 100 with a lot of kindness and fairness. Other than the luxurious living quarters, the Potter house elves received five galleons a week and one vacation a month (something lots of Wizarding families don't even receive from their jobs). They would have given more, but the house elves threatened to commit suicide if they were more generous. Isabella, the old matronly head house elf, was at first aghast when Lily and James told her and the other 99 house elves that they were paying them, but when James jokingly said he would present them all with clothes if they didn't accept the money and vacations, they quickly accepted, but only to a limit.
The attic was furnished with deep brick red carpet, gold wallpaper, and 100 four poster beds with red and gold curtains (even though the attic was large, it was magically enlarged in the inside so that it would still be spacious even with 100 house elves). Next to each bed was one spacious cherry wood dresser, and on either side of the room was one bathroom.
The house elves were even given nice looking "uniforms", which James strongly told Isabella were NOT clothes. The uniform consisted of different colored pillowcases, embroidered for the females. All of them, both males and females, also got a red and gold badge, which held the Potter crest, to be pinned onto their "uniforms". After awhile, the house elves had to admit that the improved pillowcases were indeed nice, and whenever they went out on errands, they proudly flashed their badges at passersby to show that they belonged to the Potters.
On the second floor, the first bedroom belonged to Lily and James, the second one to Will, the third to Emma, and the fourth and fifth to guests.
On the third floor, the first bedroom belonged to Harry, the second was empty, the third to Anne, and the 4th, 5th, and 6th, were basically for guests, but Lily now decided that the second bedroom would be Dudley's and the 4th would be Diana's.
In Dudley's new bedroom, which was very large and had two big windows with blue velvet curtains (one facing the front and one facing the garden), the wallpaper was royal blue with gold border and the floor had a deep plush midnight blue carpet. Next to the window facing the garden, was a large queen sized bed (that had blue and white bed sheets and quilt, and four fluffy blue and white pillows) with a spacious dresser on its other side. Facing the bed was a walk in closet that was the size of half the room. Next to the closet was Dudley's very own bathroom, which was decorated in blues, whites, and golds also. Taking up half the southern wall was a rich mahogany desk with a cushioned swivel chair. Finally, to the right of the bedroom door was an enormous bookshelf that was currently empty and to the left was a floor to ceiling clothing cabinet.
Diana's bedroom was nearly the same except that it was decorated with pinks, greens, yellows, and whites. Also, the furniture was more girlish and placed in different spots.
After finishing up, Lily sighed with relief and pleasure. She couldn't wait to see Dudley and Diana's expressions when they saw their rooms tomorrow. Hopefully, they would like the colors she chose out for them.
After making sure Will and Emma were asleep, and telling Harry and Anne to put down their books and go to bed, Lily snuggled up in her own bed next to a snoring James with a smile on her face. What surprises would the next day bring? Little did she know that in only 10 hours, her and her family's lives would change forever.
Joined: 20 August 2008
Chapter Five: Hurt and Comfort (Part 1)
"Mummy, where are you going?" asked Emma, munching on a banana nut muffin the next day at 7:30 in the morning.
"Your daddy and I are going to Privet Drive," replied Lily promptly, checking herself in the bedroom mirror, "and sweetie, I told you not to bring food into the bedrooms."
"What's Privet Drive?" asked Emma with an innocent face, pretending she hadn't heard her mother's last comment.
"Privet Drive is the street where your cousins live," replied Lily, smiling to herself at her little daughter's antics.
"We have cousins?" asked Will, appearing in the master bedroom, out of breath. He had been running from Harry, because he had stolen Harry's practice snitch.
"Yes, you have cousins. Now, Will and Emma, listen to me carefully. Your cousins, Dudley and Diana Dursley, are magical like all of us, but their parents aren't. They're muggles. Your Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon don't want them, because they hate magic, so we're going to keep them, alright? Your daddy and I are going over there right now to pick them up, and we'll be back in three hours, because we're going to use the car. Uncle Sirius is going to look after all of you, so be on your best behavior, alright?" said Lily sternly, mostly to Will. She knew Emma could behave herself, but Will was another story.
"Mummy, why don't Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon like Dudley and Diana? Aren't they their own children?" asked Emma, quite confused.
"Yes darling, but…there are people like that out there. Even if their own children are different from them, they don't love them," replied Lily sadly.
"If…if we weren't magical, would you…would you still love us?" asked Emma, afraid at the prospect of her parents not loving her.
"Of course sweetheart, we would and still will love all four of you now matter who you turn out to be," replied Lily.
"WILLIAM HENRY POTTER!!" came the angry voice of Harry, as his footsteps neared the bedroom. Will gulped.
"Uh oh, godda run!" he exclaimed, disappearing underneath the bed. Lily laughed and checked herself once more in the mirror, making sure she looked "normal" enough for Petunia. Lily was wearing khaki pants and a green silk top, and her long red hair fell in smooth waves down her back. She wore silver hoop earrings and a matching silver necklace that one of her best friends and sister-in-law, Harriet Potter (James's twin sister) had given her for Christmas. Yup, she was ready.
"James! We have to go!" she called into the bathroom. After grabbing her purse, she went downstairs just in time to answer the doorbell.
"Sirius! Just in time, as always!" she greeted happily, inviting Sirius into the house. Two minutes later, James came downstairs.
"Do I look muggle, Lils?" he asked seriously. James was wearing black pants and a blue casual t-shirt. Lily smiled. She knew how much James was trying to act muggle, so that Petunia wouldn't find any cause to criticize her further, and she appreciated it.
"Yes dear, now let's go!" she said, grabbing his arm and dragging him out the door.
"See you later, Padfoot! Oh, and could you please convince Will to return Harry's snitch to him before Harry murders him?" came the voice of James. Sirius chuckled and went in search of William Potter, who was still hiding underneath the bed in the master bedroom.
Lily and James apparated just outside Magnolia Crescent, in an old abandoned alley. Then James took out a miniature beetle sized blue Mercedes Benz from his pocket, checked to make sure no one was looking, and tapping it with his wand, turned it back to its normal glorious form.
"I'm so glad you forced me to get my license three years ago," he muttered to Lily after they both got in. Not even five minutes later, they drove into the immaculately neat driveway of #4 Privet Drive. Anticipating the meeting they were about to have, both of them walked up to the porch and Lily rang the doorbell.
The past three days had been absolutely horrible for Dudley and Diana Dursley. Their parents hadn't talked to them unless they had to, and their siblings had looked as if they were frightened of them. Dudley just glared the entire time, not showing the hurt and anger he had been feeling, but Diana had let the tears flow. A really sensitive girl, the neglect and hostility her parents had been showing her the past three days were really hurtful to her. The previous night, she had sat on the floor in front of the window, glancing out at the beautiful night sky, with its crescent moon and tiny sparkling stars dotting the sky. With sudden inspiration, Diana had folded her palms and closed her eyes.
"Dear God," she had whispered, "I don't know what I did wrong. If it was making the dishes fly into the sink, I didn't mean to. I honestly didn't. Please forgive me any of the wrongs I did, and please don't let this hurt continue! I know it's only been three days, but it feels more like three years. I love mummy and daddy, but why do they hate us now? I want to feel loved again, and I know Dudley does too, even though he doesn't show it. Please, please dear God, please make our lives like how they were before! Please show me a sign that tells me I didn't do anything wrong!"
Diana didn't know if she imagined it or not, but something like a shooting star had flown past her window.
The next morning at 6:00, Petunia and Vernon had woken up Dudley and Diana, and told them that since they were freaks and didn't deserve their love, they disowned them. It was astonishing how simply and non-caringly they had said this. Diana had burst into tears, and Dudley's face had gone white. He glared at the floor while his parents continued. They told him and his sister that if their Aunt Lily and Uncle James would adopt them, then they would go live with them, but if they didn't come, then they would go to the orphanage. Diana had stared at the parents who had loved her so much with surprise and hurt. So it was true. Her parents didn't love her or her brother, and they never would.
Now, at 7:55, they waited in the living room with one duffel bag each. Their mother had allowed them to take anything that would fit in that bag and that bag only. Everything else would go to Duncan and Delilah. Diana clutched her bag to her chest and waited, trying not to cry. She was leaving the first home she had ever known since she had come home from the hospital eight years ago, and she would never come back. Dudley's glare, which had helped him make it the past three days, was still plastered on his face, but now there was a sign of helplessness and vulnerability on it. Both kids waited, and waited, and waited, for what seemed an eternity, but it was only five minutes. Finally, exactly when the clock struck eight, the doorbell rang, and both kids jumped, along with their so called parents.
The door was opened to reveal a bony woman with a frown on her face. Lily stared at her sister, whom she hadn't seen for nine years, with surprise. Petunia, who had been very bony nine years ago, had gained a little more weight, but not that much. She was still extremely thin, and her mousy blond hair was thinner. Her taste of clothes, however, hadn't changed. She was wearing a ridiculously vibrant salmon colored summer dress with large teal flowers plastered all over it. Lily smiled to herself. "Well," she thought, "I look more "normal" than her then, huh?"
"Come in. They're in the living room," she said stiffly. James put his arm around Lily's shoulders comfortingly and led her into the house. The living room was ridiculously clean just like the garden outside, and two children sat on one of the sofas quietly. When Lily and James entered, they looked up and stared at their aunt and uncle, with whom they were going to live for the rest of their lives.
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Joined: 20 August 2008
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