Chapter 2 : Diagon Alley
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It wasn’t as if I was surprised or anything. I mean, Lily is just one of those odd children you hear about, making weird things happen every which way.
One time, when Lily was five, her pet turtle Morty died. Now, I always thought that turtle was the most disgusting creature I had ever seen, but Lily truly loved him. I remember her calling me into her room and asking why Morty had been sleeping for three days and why he hadn’t eaten any of his lettuce. When I told her that I thought he had died, her green eyes, as green as Morty’s shell, filled with tears, and at the same time Morty’s tank crashed to the ground and shattered. A piece of glass cut me on the leg, and I still have a small scar, almost invisible, that almost looks like a turtle shell.
That tank had been centered on her small desk, it shouldn’t have fallen.
Once Mum had been revived, everything seemed like a bit of a flurry. Ms. McGonagall made flowers come out of Mum’s ear and a fish fell out of my father’s mouth when he tried to ask for more evidence of magic.
Ms. McGonagall gave us directions to get to a place called the Leaky Cauldron and gave me, Mum, and Dad charmed necklaces to wear whilst we were there. Apparently we, non-magic folk, also known as muggles, wouldn’t be able to get to any magical places without them.
She told us that there would be a guide for us at the Leaky Cauldron and he would tell us what to do from there.
I watched as she walked to the end of the driveway. I blinked and she was gone, there was only a cat scurrying away where she had been.
The Leaky Cauldron was a place like no other. I hated it for its filth, roughhousing and musty smell. I loved it because this was a gateway to a whole new world, full of magic, that I was just dying to see.
Robert Perkins was a pimply young man with short brown hair and thick horn rimmed glasses. He had a name tag pinned to his chest, which stated that he was a first time muggle supervisor. We waited a bit before we were joined by another muggle family, the Hulls. There was a boy around Lily’s age with dark brown hair and he cast a curious glance everywhere. His name was Will.
I saw Lily look at him and blush. Ha, I was intending to use that against her when we got home, it’s a pity I never got the chance.
Robert ushered Lily and Will forward and showed them how to get into Diagon Alley. He showed the parents as well, but since he was standing in front of me, I didn’t get the chance to see the pattern of bricks that he touched with one of the pendants on the necklaces.
Diagon Alley was a most extraordinary place. It was so full of people wearing funny robes, in many different colors, and there were so many small shops squeezed in together. I read names like Ollivander’s and Madame Denston’s. Robert took us to the biggest building there, the wizarding bank, Gringotts. It was run by funny little men with long noses and mean expressions. One of them looked straight at me and I was absolutely terrified; its eyes were so dark, it felt like I was falling into the goblins gaze and I would never get out.
The one we went to was rather rude. It talked to Mum and Dad and then waved its finger. A clipboard flew out of nowhere and sent Dad tumbling backwards. There was so much paperwork that by the time he had finished it was time for dinner. He was handed a small gold key and a bag of gold, silver, and bronze coins. That was wizarding money.
After we had eaten, we went to find Lily a wand at a place called Ollivander’s. It was a dark musty shop full of shelves with boxes hanging out every which way. We walked up to the desk and out from behind us a man jumped out.
“Hello, hello, hello! What have we here? Two young ladies and a gentleman about to get their first wands? How delightful!” He went and pulled a measuring tape out of his sleeve. He started measuring my arms, before I pulled away.
“What are you doing?” I asked.
“I’m measuring you for a wand.” He replied matter-of-factly, before taking out the measuring tape again.
My father stepped up.” She’s not getting a wand, Lily, my other daughter is.” He gestured to my sister.
“Ah!” Mr. Ollivander exclaimed, “A beautiful girl like her would certainly catch the eye of a beautiful wand…like this one!” He pulled out a dusty box and opened it. Inside was a beautiful polished willow wand. Lily gave it a swish. The bag of coins she had placed on the counter opened and a quantity of gold coins managed to place themselves into Mr. Ollivander’s old fashioned cash register.
“It was a pleasure doing business with you, Miss Lily.” Mr. Ollivander said with a nod of his head, before pulling out his measuring tape and turning his attention to Will.
We got home late that night, my dad laden with many brown paper wrapped parcels and my sister holding onto a tortoiseshell kitten with large hazel eyes. She had gotten the young cat to keep her company at Hogwarts. I had never known cats could have hazel eyes, but I think it had something to do with being around so much magic. She named her Edwina, and it would never have occurred to me that that cat would become a better friend to her than I was.
My 14th birthday was on August 30th, 1970. Lily’s last day at home was August 31st. It made perfect sense for her to have a going away party, after all, she was going away to a new school. They invited the whole family, my grandparents on both sides and my Aunt Esther. It was a family only party, since they didn’t want outsiders to ask too many questions. And I couldn’t spend my birthday with friends because my parents didn’t want people asking questions while Lily was still at home. They were afraid one of us might have problems keeping her secret.
I was happy for my sister, and it didn’t matter that only Aunt Esther remembered that it was my birthday, Lily was going to a completely new school and she needed all the support she could get. A birthday comes once a year, but a first day at a magic school comes once in a lifetime.
There was a thunderstorm that night; every time the thunder clapped it seemed like the entire house shook. When Lily was a little girl she used to be terrified of them. She used to scamper into my room with her stuffed pig and pet turtle in hand and ask if she could sleep in my bed. I always agreed as long as Morty stayed in his tank.
She’d always run back to her room, dragging that big glass tank behind her, and place it on the floor at the foot of my bed. She used to say she did it because she was afraid Morty would have nightmares if she wasn’t there with him. And then she would snuggle up, with me and her pig, and fall fast asleep.
That night she came to me, carrying Edwina’s big basket and her stuffed pig, asking if she could sleep in my bed that night. I gave a short half asleep laugh and nodded, moving over so she could have room. She placed the basket at the foot of the bed and climbed in.
“Lily,” I asked sleepily, “You haven’t been afraid of thunderstorms in years, why now?”
She replied tiredly, “I just needed to know you were there, Petunia. I just needed to know you were still there.”
I yawned. “I’ll always be there, Lily, I’ll always be there.”
The thunder clapped again. I could feel the house shaking slightly, but I didn’t care. Lily and I were falling fast asleep, cuddling with the stuffed pig.
A/N: Hi everyone. Hope you liked the chapter. I know I asked this before, but please, please, please review...it'll only take a second, and the review box is conveniently right underneath this message. C'mon, I know you can do it, that's right, just lift your fingers and type something in that little box.
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