Chapter 4 : Shopping with the Famous Potters
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When the red head ushered in Professor Longbottom, I did not want to go in. After all, I didn’t know what would or could happen in there; but after an encouraging nudge from Professor Longbottom, I followed slowly after him, never moving from his side, staying just close enough so I would be able to run away if needed to be.
They lead me into a parlor-type room. The house was huge; I bet it was ten of my houses put together in the least, and that was saying something, because my parents were not hurting for money.
Immediately after we entered the room, Professor Longbottom sat down on one of the chairs and patted the spot next to him, ushering for me to come sit down by him. I chose to act like I had not seen the gesture and instead sat down in one of the arm chairs where I was very close to him yet far enough away to keep me from unnecessary pain. It was a well chosen location for I was hidden from view from almost everyone so I could escape the prying eyes. I know that sitting away from everyone probably looked rude and stuck up, but I did not care, if it kept me from getting hurt, then I was content.
“We are just waiting for Ron and Hermione, and then we can go. So Neville how are your kids?” the man with glasses and very messy hair said.
“Very good Harry, we will probably run into them today. Oh but I am being very rude. This pretty little girl here in the back is my friend C.J. Would you like to say hi, C.J.?” My eyes got big at the mention of my name. I did not want to be the center of attention, it was dangerous, but I knew that the quicker I said something that the sooner they would forget about me. So I said in a small squeaky voice,
“Hello.” I forced out a small smile to satisfy everyone, but this crowd was harder to please. One of the boys stood up and walked over to me and stuck out his hand. I flinched backwards and pulled myself into a ball.
“Hello, C.J., my name’s Albus Potter. I’m going into the same year as you are.” I smiled and nodded and just looked at the hand that was in front of my face, not sure what he wanted from me. If anything, he should just hit me and get it over with. After me just staring at the hand for what seemed like hours, he frowned and withdrew it then smiled at me and went back down to sit by his family. As he sat down the woman with the pretty red hair almost like mine got up.
“Why, hello, C.J.; it is very nice to meet you. You can call me Ginny. And these rude people are my husband, Harry, and my eldest child, James,” she gestured to the tall man on her right, Harry she called him. Then she gestured to the boy that made such a fool of him and I figured that was James. “and my youngest child and only daughter, Lily. We are very pleased to have you here. I hope you are enjoying yourself.”
Okay, I know I have never gotten around many places, but from the books I have read I know that people are not generally this polite when greeting each other. Maybe I was missing something and I did something wrong.
The girl called Lily got up and did a sort of dance over to me and plopped down next to me with a huge grin on her face.
“Hey, C.J.! How are you? We are going to be good friends, I just know it! Come on, I want to show you my room.” She stood up and I looked at Professor Longbottom. He gave an encouraging smile and nod, so I stood up, and Lily linked arms with me dragging me out of the room.
I stared after my sister and C.J. I really wanted to know what was with her. She seemed so sweet, I just wanted to scoop her up in my arms and tell her it would be alright. I really wanted to tell her that there was nothing to be afraid of and I would take care of her, but of course I didn’t, that would just scare her even more. I looked up at my parents. They had frowns on their faces; I knew they wanted to help too.
“It’s such a shame.” Neville said. We all looked at him.
“She is such a sweet girl, but she is afraid of everyone because of her parents. Her dad abuses her, you know. I don’t think she has ever had a friend. I don’t even think she has left her house since they moved over a year ago, and even before then I don’t think she went anywhere.” When he said that, my parents made a noise of protest about the parents.
“You should have seen it, Harry. I came to pick her up and the mother answered the door. Even she is afraid of the father. And when C.J. walked in the door and saw me, she nearly screamed in fear, almost as if she thought her father had brought me to their house to get rid of her. She cringes every time I raise one of my arms, preparing for me to hit her.” He shook his head.
“I hardly know the girl, but Neville, I will do everything in my power to protect that little girl, and I know you will too.” He nodded his head in agreement. After a short silence my father changed the grim topic with a more exciting one.
“Oh Neville, I already told Ron and Hermione, but you’ll never guess who you are having come to Hogwarts this year.”
“Besides Scorpius Molfoy, who?”
“May Dursley.” He looked at my father puzzled.
“May Dursley is my cousin’s daughter. Dudley, you remember him, don’t you? He married a witch from America; Elizabeth Delfin, I believe was her name. They are quite the couple. Gorgeous woman black hair, you should see her, Neville. But anyway, her daughter is the splitting image of her and I hope she does not give you too much trouble.” He grinned at Neville, who smirked back.
Suddenly there was a pop in the other room and hurried footsteps coming from upstairs.
“UNCLE RON!!!!” That was my sister; I got up quickly to make sure she had not left C.J. alone to get lost. When I got into where my aunt and uncle and cousins were I saw her there in the back, standing shyly and not really knowing where to go. I smiled at her and motioned for her to come stand by me. She hesitated but then reluctantly came over by me.
“So, did you like the tour of the house?” I whispered to her. She jumped violently then smiled back at me and nodded her head. I sighed; this whole friendship thing was going to take a while.
“Finally, we can go. We were thinking about leaving with out you.” Uncle Ron just smiled and shook his head at my father then split into a grin once he saw me.
“Albus! How excited are you to be going to Hogwarts?” I smiled at him but did not say anything.
“Well, hello there what is your name?” When C.J. realized he was talking to her, her eyes got wide and she looked at the floor, taking a couple steps back only to run into Neville, who stopped her.
“This here, Ron, is my friend C.J. She is going into first year with Albus and Rose.” He patted her shoulder and she looked up and smiled at him, saying with that smile alone thank you so much. I caught her eye and smiled at her, and then she immediately ducked her head.
“Well, now that everyone is here I think we should split up into two groups. Hermione and I will take the girls shopping in muggle London, Lily wanted to get her hair cut and get a couple of things. Then we will meet up with you boys at two. Sound good?” every one nodded and filed into the room with the fire place so we could use the floo network to get where we were going.
“Okay, C.J., do you want to go first?”
“C.J. has never traveled by floo powder before, Mum.” Lily said.
“Oh that’s right, well then, Neville, do you want to apperated with her then?” my dad asked, remembering what happened his first time flooing.
“Yes, I think that would be best. C.J.?”
“Do we have to?” she said very quietly. We all looked at her in surprise. Neville chuckled.
“Yes, but it will be very quick, and will be over before you know it. Okay? Just remember to not let go, and you will be fine. I pinky promise.” He held out his pinky to her and she shook it quickly then let go and looked back down at the ground, finding everyone looking at her after the exchange.
“Alright, Lily, you and Rose go together.” They both stepped in together and linked arms, while C.J. grabbed onto Neville’s arm and at the same time they were gone.
C.J.’s POV again
When everyone got to the tavern that Professor Longbottom said was called the Leaky Caldron, we split up into two groups. I went with Ginny, Hermione, Rose (Hermione’s daughter), and Lily. We were going around Muggle London, they called it. Lily explained it was the shopping center for non-magic people.
“So, C.J. where do you want to go first? I have to get my hair cut at 11 but it is only 10 right now so we can go shopping or something like that right now. Do you want to get new cloths?”
“I can’t.” I said in a small voice, embarrassed that I could not afford stuff like what they wanted to buy. I was not sure how I was going to get though the year much less afford to buy everything I needed for school.
“I can’t afford it. I only have enough to buy the essentials, if I buy anything extra I won’t be able to eat.”
“Well we will be able to pay for your lunch today, don’t worry. How much do you have?” the girl called Rose said.
“200 euros.” This was the most I had talked to someone in my life, it was kind of exciting. I really liked talking to Lily and Rose, I finally felt like I might have friends. But I was going to be careful; I could not let my guard down.
“Oh, well then you have plenty! You will only need about 50 of those to get all your supplies. So you can get your hair cut and anything you want.” I hadn’t explained my self clearly so I broke into her monologue.
“No, I only have 200 for the year.”
“So? When else are you going to use it? It’s not like you have to pay for food at Hogwarts. No, you have plenty. OH! Look at that! I love this store! Come on Lily! Let’s give C.J. a make over!” They started giggling and dragged me and their mothers into the store. This was going to be a long day.
We spent exactly an hour in that store and I came out with three bags of clothing all for myself. Some Ginny had refused to let me pay for. She said, I really want to buy this for you, and I was in no possession to argue with her as I did not want get to hurt. At this point I did not think they would hurt me but just to be safe, I had to keep my guard up.
Then we had to go get Lily’s hair cut and Rose decided that she would get hers trimmed. Rose insisted that I would have a lot of fun if I got my hair cut. She described getting her hair cut “like creating a whole new person”. I really did not want to; I had already spent 60 of my 200 euros. I really did not want to spend anymore. I knew now that I would have plenty of money for the year now that I did not have to spend any money on food since it would be provided but I still would feel better if I had money left after shopping.
They finally convinced me when they told me it would not cost more than 30 euros. That would leave me 110 left, and Ginny would give me 10. I felt a lot better. Of course I promised to pay back every penny I owed her eventually, but that was more a promise to myself than to her. I did not want to give her any reason to hurt me.
With the help of Rose, I eventually decided what I would do to my hair. At the moment, my hair was currently a black with a red sheen to it. If it got lightened, then it would be a pretty auburn. So, I was going to get it lightened then trimmed. It would fall down to the middle of my back and cost just fewer than 30 euros.
We shopped around aimlessly for a couple of hours and I surprisingly had a very good time. I was finding out what it was like to have real friends, and for the first time in my life, I found out what it was like to be loved and to not be scared. I trusted Hermione, Ginny, Lily, and Rose, but I would still be careful and keep my guard up.
After everyone ate lunch together, Neville and I went around and visited all the shops in Diagon Alley with C.J. because Rose, Lily and the others wanted to stop by other shops that C.J. did not want to go in. I think mostly though that she was just a little over whelmed with hanging out with all of them for such a long period of time; after all, she was used to spending all her time by her self.
She was getting along with Rose and Lily very well, I noticed. I kept trying to make her smile and laugh at the things I did. So far I was having a hard time at it, seeing as how I have only gotten a small giggle out of her once. I think she was shyer around me because of her father, and yet she had such a big heart that she was willing to try and get to know people even after all that she had been through.
I also noticed that she did not really talk unless asked a question; she just mostly listened and smiled at what ever they said. She was letting herself open up to people that she had only known a day and yet she was being very careful and really waiting to see of they could be trusted. I admired her for her brains for she was clearly very smart.
“So, C.J. when is your birthday?” I said, trying to get her to talk to me.
“Oh that was not long ago, now was it? Happy late birthday! Did you know that is my dad’s birthday is on the same day as yours?” She murmured a small thank you and shook her head.
“You know, it is tradition for a witch that is starting school to get an owl, cat or toad; and seeing as how your birthday was so recently, well I think that it is only fair that I purchase you an owl for a present. Oh ad I don’t want you to pay me back, it is a present. Would you like that?” she looked up at me and gave me a huge smile. It was the first one I had actually seen that big.
I was excited; I was actually getting somewhere in becoming friends with her. Even though I had only known her for a short period of time, I already felt like she was one of my best friends. I didn’t know if she felt that way, but she would soon, I guarantee that.
“You mean I could have my own pet? You would get it for me? Oh! Thank you Albus! Thank you!! Of course I will pay you back! Thank you!” she gave me a very quick hug and before I had a chance to hug her back she had pulled away and was looking at the ground almost like she thought I was going to get mad at her for giving me a hug.
“I’m sorry. I won’t to that again, but thank you again.” I just looked at her and a wave of sadness crashed over me. She thought I was mad at her for hugging me. I gave her a big smile and said,
“What is there to be sorry about? Come on; let’s go get you an owl!” I grabbed her hand and pulled her inside to look for an owl.
I am not sure where Neville got away too.
I was feeling happier than I had in a long time. Well actually, ever. I finally made friends. I just hoped that they would stay my friends.
Anyway the reason I was so excited was because Albus was going to buy me an owl. ME!! He was going to buy ME AND OWL!! AHHHH! He really is a sweet boy.
We entered the animal shop. The first thing I thought when I entered was, it smelled. I will never think that my room smelled again. It was not really a bad stench, but more one that just smelled of animal droppings. I walked up and down the isles looking for an owl I liked.
Then after about five minutes of walking up and down isles I saw it; the perfect owl. It was a pure white owl with black specks everywhere. Then around its right eye was a crescent shaped scar, showing that it had been abused too.
I reached up to stroke it with my right hand, and then realized; Albus was still holding my hand, but I did not want to let go, so I lifted my left hand and was about to touch the owl when someone said from my left,
“I would not do that if I were you.” Startled I stepped back into Albus then blushed and hid behind him instead. Hiding behind him worked pretty well too, for Albus was a good head taller than me.
“Why should she not touch the owl?” Albus demanded from the worker, I was not sure if he was angry or not. I was going to tell him that it was alright but Albus just smiled at me and squeezed my hand.
“Well Al” I looked at Albus in surprise. Al? How did he know his name? Albus looked at me and his eyes said that he would explain later.
“That owl that your girlfriend was about to touch” I blushed deeply again a tried to let go of his hand but Albus only held on tighter.
“Has bitten the last couple of costumers that tried to pet him.”
“Oh, I see. Well thanks for the warning Ted. Hey, are you coming home for dinner tonight? Come on it will be fun! If it makes you want to come Vicky will be there!” Albus wiggled his eyebrows. He clearly knew this person named Ted. Ted grinned at Albus.
“Well if Vicky is going to be there well then I must simply go, than shouldn’t I? Have you gone and gotten you wand yet?” Albus shook his head. That was the last thing we had not gotten yet.
“Well I get off in five, can I come?”
“Sure, I am going to buy C.J. an owl for her birthday then we can go. Oh by the way, C.J. this is my idiot c—well actually I do not know what he would be called, he is my dad’s god child anyway though. This is Teddy, or Ted, he goes by either. Teddy, this is my friend, C.J.” My heart soared, I was Albus’ friend. I was going to scream for joy. I had a friend. I gave him a huge smile, which he returned.
“Only friend Al? You could have fooled me, after all you have not let go of her hand since you came in the store. Never the less I will get off your backs about it. So when did you meet?”
“Honestly?” Albus asked. Teddy nodded.
“This morning.” Teddy looked surprised, and then gave Albus a huge grin. They started talking then and teasing each other like they were brother, and not wanting to interrupt their conversation I dropped Albus’ hand and walked over to the owl.
“Hey, you’re a pretty one aren’t you?” it just looked at me and blinked once.
“Hey, you’ve been abused too haven’t you? I know what it feels like too.” It cocked its head to one side and listened to me talk softly to it. I slowly raised my hand not in the least bit afraid; after all I already have burses and scars, what difference is one more? He watched my hand very closely almost like he was reading my thoughts and deciding on whether or not he should protect him self or if I was trust worthy.
“Its alright, I wont hurt you. See I have scars just like you.” I showed him the underside of my right arm. It studied my arm then cooed. I took this as an approval sign to go ahead and pet it. I slowly raised my hand and set it down. It cooed at me again and nipped at my finger. I giggled at him and continued stroking him.
“What should I name you huh? Every creature has to have a name. Hmm. What do you think? I really like Hero, we have both been through a lot which makes us hero’s don’t you think?” he hooted at me once again.
“Okay, Hero it is. Would you like to come home with me Hero?” he hooted again and nipped my finger affectingly. I giggled again then I realized it was silent behind me. I turned around keeping my hand still on my newly made friend to find Albus and Teddy staring at me.
“So the bird can make you laugh and I can’t?” I giggled at the expression on his face.
“Finally, I make you laugh.” I raised my eyebrows at him. He then waked over to me.
“Is he the one you want?” I nodded eagerly.
“Call him too you. And hold your arm out so he can land on it.” I did as he said, and he flew off where he was sitting and on to my arm. I smiled at him and looked up at Albus who smiled back.
“Well C.J., you are a very interesting young woman. That bird has not liked anyone since he was brought here. Should I ring him up Al? Since it is my understanding that you are buying it yes?” Albus nodded.
The actually buying process took five minutes then Teddy shrunk all the bags I would need to take care of Hero. Professor Longbottom had already taken all of the other bags I had bought during the day. Speaking of him, I had not seen him in a while. I wonder where he went off to.
After I coaxed Hero into his cage we set off for Olivanders. I got to pick out our wands, which Albus explained to me was the thing that witches and wizards channeled their magical ability through. Of coarse we could do magic without our wands, but as we got older it got harder. If we wanted to continue to be able to do wandless magic we had to keep practicing it. Albus said his father could do wandless magic along with his Aunt Hermione and Uncle Ron. He thought even his mother could do some. Of coarse it was easiest to do when we were feeling scared of angry which is why young wizards have such success in performing wandless magic.
Mr. Olivanders had Albus go first, saying that if he guessed right he would take longer. Evidently, all Potters had trouble finding the correct wand. James, Albus’ older brother it took almost 6 wands before they found the right one. I sat down a chair away from Teddy, I did not know if I could trust him yet, and watched Albus try his first wand.
After an hour dealing with Albus and the muggle born C.J., such a sweet girl, she apologized several times each after she broke something. It was almost like she was afraid I was going to hurt her because she broke something. Ha like I had never had anything broken in this shop before.
Finally after three wands for the girl and eight for Albus, he set a new record for the Potters. The most was with James Potter the first, and he only tried seven.
Albus’ wand turned out to be an Oak Wood 1 Unicorn hair 8 inches long. While C.J.’s was Oak Wood 2 Unicorn hairs from the same unicorn, and 7 inches long. Both very powerful wands and they were brother wands. Whenever that happened they always turned on each other creating two enemy wizards, or on the opposite end of the spectrum, they fell in love. Right now in this situation, I was not really sure which would happen, but I would be watching.
C.J.’s POV again
Today I found out two things. One: not all guys are bad and that I can trust most of them. Albus and the Potters are some of the guys I can trust. I am pretty sure they are my friends but I have to keep my guard up to avoid any possible unnecessary pain. The second thing I learned was that today for the first time in my like I found out what it was like to be loved. I could not wait to go back to school.
The night I got back from having the best day of my life, I had the worst night of my life. That night was the worst my father had ever beaten me. I will not give you the gruesome details, but I will have those scars for the rest of my life. That night my father was as drunk as he had ever been, and he threw a beer bottle at me, he probably would have killed me if he did not pass out first.
So longest chapter so far right? Thanks for all the reviews I recived last chapter. . . for those who gave me advice I hope i fixed everything you suggested if I didnt review again to tell me how i can do better. . . . THANKS SOOO MUCH to my AMAZING beta moony101 ur AMAZING! luve u gal! So how did you like the chapter? I had so much fun writing it. So please please please please let me know what you thought in that box down there . . . Love u guys!! REVIEW!!!
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