Chapter 1 : Wide Green Eyes
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Vernon Dursley’s alarm clock always rang at precisely 7:30 every morning, and today was no different. As the shrill sound of the ringing clock pierced the air Vernon and Petunia got up, out of their warm bed, and performed their usual morning routine.
Petunia picked Dudley up gently, taking a moment before leaving the room to kiss the top of his head and tell him that he would have only the finest, yes, only the finest for her little Diddykins. Then she descended the stairs, craning her neck to see whether the neighbours had gotten up yet and smirking slightly when she saw that their house was still dark. A moment after she disappeared from Vernon’s sight, he heard the sound of her moving the pots and pans around to start cooking breakfast.
Vernon smiled indulgently as he heard Dudley squalling from the kitchen. “Little tot has a healthy set of lungs all right.” He started to hum as he opened his closet and was faced with dozens of almost identical shirts.
Well, he didn’t think he was doing anything really important at Grunnings today, so he could pass on the dressy shirt-and-jacket combinations. It was cold out though, so the smartest thing would be to wear a long-sleeved shirt. On the other hand he was going to stay indoors most of today.
In the end he picked out a long-sleeved dark blue shirt and a grey tie. Looking in the mirror, he gave a satisfied nod. This outfit was just casual enough to be comfortable but also gave off an air of importance. With one more look at himself, he went downstairs for some breakfast.
Petunia had everything firmly in control in the kitchen. Dudley was tucked in her left arm, and she had some nice baby food in a bowl on the table, and was feeding him spoonfuls in between flipping the bacon that Vernon always ate every morning.
“Morning,” she greeted him, coming over to adjust his tie and pass Dudley over to him. “Can you feed Diddydums while I butter the toast?” Vernon acquiesced, and a minute later he found himself cradling Dudley and feeding him spoonfuls of cereal and milk.
“Did you know about Number Seven?” Petunia asked as she scraped some butter over Vernon’s toast. “I heard from Arabella that they’re thinking about divorce!” she whispered, relishing the news. The bacon and toast appeared on a plate and Dudley disappeared from Vernon’s arms, caught up in the tornado of orderliness that was Petunia.
As Vernon ate, he was sure he heard something outside – a small cry. Petunia heard it as well, because she looked towards the door with a small frown sketched onto her face. The noise came again, a small child’s cry, once and then louder. Petunia rolled her eyes and scoffed, turning back to the pristine tabletop.
“Really,” she said scathingly, “some people need to learn to hush their children. I’m sure our Dinky Diddys didn’t make as much fuss as that brat from Number Seven.” Dudley, as if he’d heard his mother, began banging his spoon on the table, splattering the door of the fridge with his food. Both his parents turned to look at him with positively adoring looks on their faces.
Once he’d eaten and left the plate in the sink, Vernon washed his hands, put his coat on, pecked Petunia on the cheek, pecked Dudley on the cheek and picked up his briefcase. At the sudden movements of his father Dudley screwed up his face and began to wail. “Won’t. Won’t, won’t, won’t,” he screamed.
“Really, Vernon,” Petunia chastised, hurrying over to her baby and kissing the top of his head.
“Awfully sorry about that, dear,” Vernon apologized, before turning to leave. He’d just gotten to the door when a spoonful of Dudley’s food sailed past his head and landed on the door just in front of him.
“Good set of arms that tyke’s got there. Very strong for his age. Who knows, maybe he’ll be a boxer when he grows up!” Vernon said, smiling indulgently. Behind him, he could hear Petunia whispering to Dudley.
“You threw it all the way over there! You’re such a strong little baby, yes you are. I am proud of your strength, Popkins, Daddy’s right, you’re so strong!” she exclaimed in a whisper. Vernon smiled.
“Well, enough dawdling,” he said. “I’d best be on my way.” He opened the door and froze.
“Vernon?” Petunia asked tentatively after a second of his immobility. “Vernon, is everything alright?”
“Petunia, love?” he responded after a second. Without waiting for the reply his worried wife was opening her mouth to give him, he forged on. “That baby we heard wasn’t from Number Seven.”
After a pause, with Petunia trying to puzzle out what her husband was telling her, Vernon continued. “Someone’s gone and left a baby on our doorstep.” He sounded puzzled, but Petunia knew that he’d start being angry soon.
“Well, maybe we should give it back,” she suggested, hurrying over to the front door to stand next to her husband, peering down at the strange bundle on her doorstep.
“Give it back?” Vernon exploded. “Bloody hell, I should hope we can give it back! I’m not about to let a common brat off the street share a house with my Dudley!”
The baby, awakened by the noise, opened wide green eyes and began to wail. Petunia gasped and stepped back as though she’d been punched, and Vernon ceased his shouting to turn towards his wife.
“Is everything alright?” Petunia shook herself. She didn’t know what to say, and anyway, she wasn’t sure yet, she didn’t know whether it was him, but he’d had Lily’s eyes and she was already sure, she just didn’t want to say it.
“It’s fine, Vernon, you should go to work now. You’ll be late if don’t start driving soon,” she said firmly, almost pushing him out of the door. Her husband looked at his watch and spared a worried glance back at her before acquiescing.
“Well – If you insist, I suppose. See you this afternoon, then, Petunia,” he said, walking over to Number Four’s driveway. As he turned the corner that led to Wisteria Walk, he saw Arabella Figg poking her head out her window and peering at his house.
“Bloody nosy neighbours,” he grumbled, accelerating past her house with a beep of his horn.
In Number Four, Privet Drive, Petunia Evans-Dursley tentatively pulled the blanket covering the baby away, for once ignoring Dudley’s shouts.
The scar on his forehead was the thing that her eyes landed on first. A perfect lightning bolt, branded below his hairline.
As if he sensed she was staring at him, his wide eyes opened and she couldn’t help but gasp again. They were Lily’s eyes.
And so, in the glaring white light of her kitchen, Petunia acknowledged her nephew for the first time.
A/N - Hello again! My quote from AlPotterFan's Rick Riordan's Quote Challenge was "I am proud of your strength," and I hope I intergrated that in okay. My 'Missing Moment' from the missing moments Canon Challenge was the Dursleys finding Harry on their doorstep, so I hope I did that justice as well.
I'd love any feedback you could give me - I think this is quite dry compared to my other pieces because I was trying to write in the style that JK was writing when she introduced us to the Dursleys, so I would love it if you could pop down and pay a visit to the little grey box and tell me whether I succeeded or whether I was just plain boring.
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