Harry & Hermione
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witowsmp - A Sirius Matter
Chapter 3 - Going Shopping
Just in case you're confused, let me clear up the matter. I am not J.K. Rowling, and I do not own Harry Potter, and am certainly not making any money off of this. I'm writing this purely because I enjoy it, and I hope you do too.
A Sirius Matter
Chapter 3 – Going Shopping
"What do you mean, 'us?' The prophecy is just about me," said Harry.
Hermione looked at him exasperatedly. "I mean 'us,' because I end up involved in almost all your adventures, whether I'm properly trained or not!"
Harry put his head down. "I guess you do. Maybe I should…"
"DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT!" yelled Hermione.
"Think about what?" asked Harry.
"Ditching your friends to try and protect us," said Hermione. "I know that's what you were thinking. Even Sirius knows you can't do that. He told you to ask for help!"
Harry put his hands up in surrender. "Ok, us. I suppose we should tell Ron, too."
"That's probably a good idea," said Hermione happily, "but first I think we should come up with a plan. Before we do that, though, I think we should inspect Sirius' house. I'd suggest we go there immediately. Maybe we can ask mum and dad to take us there."
"Er," said Harry, "Actually, it might be dangerous for muggles to go to a wizarding house that's been abandoned for years."
Hermione put her hand on her forehead. "How could I be so stupid? After Lupin taught us about all those dangerous magical creatures! No wonder you did better than me in defense! Mum and dad wouldn't even be able to handle a boggart! Do you have any suggestions?"
"Actually," said Harry, "it's kind of a bumpy ride, but it would probably be best to take the Knight Bus. I've got a few Galleons on me. Maybe we can go to Diagon Alley so I can get more. I'd like to get some new clothes."
She smiled at Harry, "I thought I was supposed to be the smart one. That's a good idea. I'll go downstairs and ask mum and dad." Hermione then turned around and walked out of the room with Harry following behind him.
They went downstairs to find Mr. and Mrs. Granger sitting on the couch, watching TV. Hermione walked in front of them and said, "Mum, dad, Harry and I want to take the wizarding bus and go shopping. Is that ok with you?"
"Harry getting his own wardrobe?" asked Marissa.
Hermione nodded. "He inherited enough money from his parents to get nice clothes, but he can't let the Dursleys find out."
"They'd probably find a way to steal it for their 'itle Dudleykins," said Harry bitterly.
"Judging by what I saw this morning, you're probably right," said Adam. "How could that Professor Dumbledore leave you with them?"
"I don't know," said Harry, "but I don't plan to go back."
"Ok," said Marissa, "You can go. It's one o'clock now. Just be back by seven."
"Here's some money so you can buy yourself something as well," said Adam, handing Hermione some money out of his wallet.
A few minutes later, Harry and Hermione were outside and were just stepping on the Knight Bus. "Hello Harry," said Stan, "Who's your girlfriend?"
Both teenagers blushed. "Hermione's my best friend," said Harry, "not my girlfriend."
"Then why are you holding hands?"
"Look Stan, we'd like to go to Number Twelve Grimmauld Place," said Harry, changing the topic.
After a rather bumpy ride, they found themselves standing in front of the House of Black for the first time. It had dirty walls, grimy windows, and a battered door. They gaped at it.
"I wonder if we can magically clean the outside of the house," said Harry.
"I wouldn't risk it," said Hermione. "The charms preventing detection are probably on the inside of the house."
"Maybe we can find a hose to clean the outside with later," said Harry, as he reached for the door. As soon as his hand touched the door knocker, which was the shape of a twisted serpent, he heard several loud metallic clicks. He then opened it with no problem aside from the loud creak.
"The invitation charm!" exclaimed Hermione. When Harry gave her a confused look, she explained, "When that charm is invoked, the door will only unlock for people personally invited by the house's rightful owner. In this case, you were invited by Sirius Black."
They stepped inside and closed the door, which immediately relocked. The first thing they noticed was the smell. It was as though several animals had died in there long ago. It was also dark. Harry pointed his wand up and said, "Lumos Maximus," causing the wand to light up the room.
At the same time, "Hermione pointed her wand at the room and said, "Scourgify!" which caused a large section of the floor to be cleaned up, causing the smell to lessen. While Harry kept his wand lit, Hermione cleaned up the rest of that room. They then saw several old style gas lamps along the wall. Hermione pointed her wand at them and muttered a spell, causing them all to light. Harry put out his wand and looked at the peeling wallpaper and threadbare carpet of a long, gloomy hallway, where a cobwebby chandelier glimmered overhead and age-blackened portraits hung on the walls. "Well, said Hermione, "I'd suggest we carefully walk through every room cleaning it and lighting whatever lamps are in it. We've got to be watchful for any dark creatures."
They went through the house slowly and quietly, destroying several boggarts (Hermione's was still Professor McGonagall, but she put Dumbledore's beard on her; Harry's was still a dementor, but he put a clown face under the dementor's hood) and other minor dark creatures. Hermione banished curtains full of doxies, but one of the creatures escaped and flew toward Harry, who backed up and accidentally tripped on a chair that was behind him. Hermione killed the doxie while Harry fell on the floor, causing a loud crash.
"WHO DARES DISTURB THE ANCIENT AND MOST NOBLE HOUSE OF BLACK?" shouted a woman's voice from outside the room. Both teens left in search of the woman, who continued to shriek at them. "Are you plunderers, here to steal the valuable family heirlooms of the great Black Estate? The house elf won't let you escape alive!"
They found that the source of the screaming was a portrait of an old woman. "The house elf isn't here, and we're not thieves!" said Harry. "Sirius Black invited us, and we're trying to clean up this pigsty!"
"Sirius Black is in Azkaban," said the painting sadly. "I'm his mother. When he was growing up, I was very disappointed in him, but finally he grew some backbone and helped the Dark Lord. It's too bad he got caught by the ministry. How do you know him?"
"He escaped a year ago, and now he's on the run. He's my godfather. I'm Harry…"
"HARRY POTTER! I SEE THAT SCAR NOW! YOU BANISHED THE DARK LORD! YOU ARE NOT WELCOME IN THIS HOUSE!"
"Hermione, can you get this painting off the wall?"
"WHAT?" said the angry painting.
"I'll try," said Hermione, who tried several spells on the painting unsuccessfully, causing the portrait to laugh. Hermione yelled over the noise, "It's got some sort of powerful sticking charm on it, as well as protection from the silencing charm."
Harry then shouted back, "I'm going down to the kitchen!" He turned around and walked away, and Hermione followed. Once they were there, Harry whispered, "Do you remember what Sirius did to the Fat Lady's portrait? I'm going to get a sharp knife and cut the portrait out."
"Maybe we both should. Hopefully if we cut both sides at the same time, she won't have time to run away," said Hermione.
They went back to the portrait that was still yelling, stuck two sharp knives into the canvas, and immediately started cutting. They ignored the ear-splitting shrieks from the old woman as they managed to pull the canvas off the wall, rolling it up.
"I hope Sirius doesn't mind," said Harry, "but there's no way I could concentrate on my magic with that racket going on."
"We won't destroy it unless Sirius wants us to," said Hermione. "We'll just move her elsewhere."
"Maybe Ron could take care of her," said Harry, causing them both to laugh.
"Anyway," said Hermione, "We'd better go if we're going to have time to go shopping. You can owl Sirius about what to do with her."
"Better yet, I'll send her to him. Do you know how to shrink it so that Hedwig can carry her?"
"I can shrink it, but I think you should use a different owl. I doubt very much that Hedwig would forgive you for making her put up with that racket for such a long flight."
"I don't trust any other owl to find him," replied Harry.
"I wonder if it can be silenced now that it's off the frame," said Hermione. She pointed her wand at the screaming portrait and said, "Silencio," which caused it to immediately stop yelling. She then shrank the canvas down with no problem and stuffed it in her purse.
"Ok," said Harry, "now that that's settled, let's take the bus to the Leaky Cauldron."
"Actually," said Hermione, "why don't we floo there? Didn't you see the jar of floo powder by the fireplace?"
He took a deep breath. He hated flooing, but knew that it would save time. "Ok."
She went first, throwing down the powder into the fireplace and shouting, "Diagon Alley," and disappeared in the green flames. Harry took off his glasses and put them in his pocket. Stating his destination very clearly, he threw down the powder and soon found himself lying on the floor next to Hermione's feet, putting his glasses on.
After she'd helped him up, they walked as quickly as they could, hand-in-hand to Gringotts, where Harry asked to speak to a goblin about his account. Harry and Hermione were shown to a small office and told to wait a few moments. After about five minutes, a goblin walked into the room and sat at the desk. "Mr. Potter," he said, "my name is Griphook. And your name is?" He asked, looking toward Hermione.
"Hermione Granger. I'm a friend of Mr. Potters."
Griphook turned back to Harry. "How may I help you?"
"I'd like to know exactly how much money I have," said Harry.
"Well," said Griphook, "here are the exact figures." He waved his hand and a portfolio appeared in front of Harry. He passed it to Hermione as Griphook continued. He didn't notice her eyes widening as she skimmed through the pages. "You own the land that the Potter home in Godric's Hollow was built on. Unfortunately your ancestral home was destroyed in the attack that killed your parents. They did however, leave you a significant amount of gold and other assets such as hotel chains and airlines. I understand that your parents used those to travel incognito whenever they needed to get away fast. Those investments have made significant profits, as is indicated in the portfolio. Hermione nodded at Harry when he glanced at her. "They also left a significant amount of gold here."
"You mean my vault?"
"That vault is only one of several," Griphook said. "Its purpose is to finance your schooling. You are actually one of the wealthiest wizards in Britain. You're even wealthier than the Malfoy family." Harry smiled at that. "If you so desire, you'll never have to work a day in your life. You're what muggles would call, 'filthy rich.'"
That gave Harry an idea. "Is there any convenient way that I can use my money in the muggle world? Muggles have things called debit cards that…"
"Oh yes," said Griphook, smiling his toothy smile. "We actually have debit cards." He waved his hand and another paper, along with a quill and ink, appeared in front of him. "There's a startup fee and transaction fee. Just read that paper and sign it if you agree to the terms."
He and Hermione read the form. He looked at her as if to ask, "What do you think?" She nodded and he signed the form. The form disappeared, replaced by a visa credit card, which Harry immediately put in his old-looking wallet. Harry then asked, "Could you start owling me financial statements every month?"
Griphook smiled. "Actually, Mr. Potter, that portfolio is charmed so that it is always accurate. You can check it anytime to see what you own. In fact, you should find that the startup fee for your debit card has been removed already." After they confirmed that, Harry was satisfied.
After they left the room, Harry took a significant amount of gold out of his vault. He then grabbed Hermione's hand, and together they headed toward Flourish and Blotts. Harry looked at Hermione and smiled. "Look around the store. Grab any book you think would be useful. Try to be quick because we still have to go muggle-clothes shopping, but I want to make sure we have what we need to get started. We'll probably take another trip here soon, when we decide what else we need from the shops here."
"No problem," said a beaming Hermione, as she hurried through the store, scanning the titles and grabbing the interesting ones. Harry thought she appeared to be on a muggle shopping spree as she handed him the huge stack she'd already acquired. Once she was done, Harry decided to add a bottomless weightless trunk that they also sold to his purchases. His pockets significantly lighter, they hurried out of Diagon Alley, through the Leaky Cauldron and onto the streets of London. Harry was going to call the Knight Bus, but Hermione stopped him by saying, "There's a mall within walking distance." She grabbed his hand and about dragged him toward their destination.
After Hermione had picked out a new outfit for herself like her father told her, Harry decided that the best thing for him to do was to let Hermione pick out his clothes. She had him try on a few things to determine his size. She then started filling a cart with jeans, shorts, swimming trunks, t-shirts, jumpers, underwear (which embarrassed him), and socks. She even had him get a few muggle suits, one black, one navy blue, and one dark green, which she claimed made him look, "very handsome." She then picked out shirts, ties, belts and socks to go with them. She then had him try on trainers. He paid for it all with his new visa, and then changed into one of the outfits before leaving the store. When they got out of there they were bogged down with packages which they put into the bottomless trunk as inconspicuously as possible. When they were finished, they hailed the Knight Bus and went back to Hermione's home.
When they got there, Adam, who was watching TV in the living room, said, "You're five minutes late."
"I'm sorry sir," said Harry. "It was my fault. Don't blame Hermione, she was helping me."
Adam Granger smiled, "Ok, we can stay the execution. I must say that I like your new outfit, Harry.