Chapter 2 : Myths and Meetings
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How about the fact that a girl I’ve never seen before knows every detail of my life, from memory?, he thought to himself. Harry absentmindedly glanced at his watch, but when he recognized the time his eyes grew wide and he jumped up, almost losing his balance in his rush. He quickly regained his composure and walked purposefully down the front path, turning to his right when he reached the end.
Ten minutes later, a very out of breath Harry arrived at a small café wedged between two drab looking office buildings that was completely empty, save two teenagers whispering to each other in a corner booth. Harry noticed them right away and quietly made his way towards them. The girl, who had bushy brown hair, was the first to notice him approach.
“Harry!” she cried, “you’re late. I was worried something had happened.” The redheaded boy sitting next to her smirked as Harry slid into the booth on the girl’s other side.
“You worry too much, Hermione. I told you he was fine,” he said, rolling his eyes. She turned her piercing gaze on the redheaded boy.
“You, Ronald, are being very nonchalant about all of this. One might think,” she added haughtily, “that…”
“Can you too quit it already? I’ve got something important to tell you,” Harry interrupted, making both of his best friends drop their pre-argument to turn their full attention to him.
“Someone came and saw me today. That’s why I was late.” Ron looked intrigued at this statement, while Hermione looked horrorstricken.
“What happened? Are you alright? Who was it?” She threw question after question at him without waiting for a response. Ron kicked her lightly under the table, making her stop her tirade of questions and look at him.
“Will you just let him finish?” he exclaimed. Hermione scowled, but returned her attention to Harry without a word. Harry noticed this little change in Hermione’s behavior, never before had she given in to Ron so easily, but he quickly wrote it off by the fact that she too was curious about his visitor.
“It was a woman…I think. I’m not really sure exactly what she was. But she looked like a woman…” Harry recollected his whole encounter with the mysterious “Faith”, before looking back to his friends for an explanation.
“And she said she was your guardian?” Hermione asked, clearly unsure about the whole situation.
“Yeah, do you know what that is?” he asked expectantly.
“Well,” Hermione hesitated, “I have heard about them. But in everything I’ve read, they’re considered myths, fairytales.”
“She was real, Hermione. I know she was,” he stated matter-of-factly.
“I believe you, I just don’t know if we’re going to find any information from the books I’ve read. I don’t know where to look.” Both Ron and Harry looked incredulously at Hermione. She had just admitted that books, her beloved books, would be of no use to them. And further, she had no idea what to do about it. It was unnerving, to say the least.
“Well, didn’t she say that you’d find out what she was sometime?” Ron asked, trying to get something positive out of the situation.
“But we need information now,” Harry said angrily. All of this was so frustrating. Everything had gone wrong for him the minute he stepped off the Hogwart’s Express at King’s Cross station. First, his aunt and uncle had refused, point blank, to let Ron and Hermione stay with him until he left their house for good. That was why he was sneaking off to see them so often, though he highly doubted that anyone noticed he was missing for hours at a time, as long as he was out of their hair. Then, he had started having nightmares involving everyone he knew wandering around carrying strange objects he couldn’t make out, until they vanished, right into thin air. He wasn’t sure what they meant, but he was almost positive they meant something. Then, the trio, and every other Hogwart’s student for that matter, had been informed that the school wasn’t going to open for the coming year. Granted, Harry hadn’t planned on returning had the school opened, but it was upsetting all the same. The one place he had felt at home for six years was no longer there, as a sort of comfort when things looked especially bleak.
Finally, Harry’s thoughts drifted back to his friends, who were brainstorming ways of finding out about guardians. Hermione was tapping her fingers on the black, vinyl table, obviously agitated at their predicament.
“We could ask my dad,” Ron volunteered, “I bet he would know something.”
“I don’t think we want to mention this to other people just yet,” Hermione stated, looking sympathetically at Ron as his face fell. “It’s just, we don’t want any of this getting out, do we Harry?” Harry jerked his head towards Hermione.
“No, we shouldn’t tell anyone,” he said simply. Then another though popped into his head.
“Any luck with RAB?” he asked hopefully. Hermione shook her head quickly as Ron suddenly became very interesting in his hands, which were clasped together on the table.
“Not yet, we haven’t had much time to look into that,” Hermione said, her cheeks taking on an unusually pink tinge. Harry noticed Ron’s ears turn red, and he knew something was up.
“What’s going on?” he asked impatiently. He looked back and for the between his two friends, waiting for an answer. Hermione broke the silence.
“It’s nothing, Harry. Nothing important.”
“Yeah, don’t worry about it.” Ron chimed in. He quickly looked as if he regretted saying anything when Harry asked, “Worry about what?” Hermione glared at Ron before returning her attention to Harry.
“Nothing. Anyway, you should get back to your aunt’s and uncle’s. We don’t want to raise any suspicion.” She gently shoved Ron towards then end of the booth, signaling that they should get up.
They said goodbye outside the café, and Harry headed one way while Hermione and Ron headed the other. As Harry walked home in the fading light, he had so much on his mind he couldn’t focus on anything, but Hermione and Ron kept coming to the forefront of his thoughts.
Something’s going on with them, Harry thought, as he made his way down the street, and I’m going to figure out what it is.
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