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Chapter 3 : Goodbye Privet Drive
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As it was, there wasn’t much he could do to stop it though. Ron’s letter had in no way asked for permission to come and get Harry, but was a purely informative one stating clearly the date and time to expect him. He was going to be driving a car that Fred and George had bought him, and Harry could only imagine what it was like, if the mischievous twins had anything to do with it.
Harry was so excited about the day ahead that he was barely able to contain himself. He had woken up before the sun made the first glimpse on the horizon. He had packed all of his things, cleaned Hedwig’s cage even though she was out hunting and would meet him at the Burrow, and carried his every possession to the entryway.
He then proceeded to the kitchen where he made a fresh pot of coffee and started cooking quite an extravagant breakfast. The smell of breakfast seemed to be just the trick to rouse the Dursley’s.
Harry greeted them all with a pleasant smile when they walked through the kitchen door. They just stood there looking at him suspiciously.
“What’s the matter with you all?” Harry asked. “I thought this would be a day you would want to celebrate. After all, after today I won’t ever bring a dark cloud over this house again, and you’ll finally be rid of me. This is your independence day. Sit down and eat all you want Dudley. There are no diets on independence day.”
Eventually, all of the Dursley’s were seated at the table, and after examining the food suspiciously for a minute, they began to eat. Harry was too stirred up to eat any of what he had cooked himself. He kept himself busy making sure no cup of coffee or glass of juice ever went dry, and adding more food to the plates when the level got low.
Harry had just refilled Dudley’s plate for the third time, when the doorbell chimed. Harry put down the frying pan and announced to them that he would get the door. It took all of Harry’s self control to keep from running out of the room to get to the door.
Harry opened the door and couldn’t keep the happiness off of his face as he saw Ron standing there looking so much like any ordinary seventeen year old muggle that he thought their wasn’t a person on Privet drive who could tell the difference.
“It’s great to see you, Ron,” Harry said still smiling. “Come on in.”
“Good to see you to, mate,” Ron said as he began to step inside.
It wasn’t until Ron had gotten through the doorway that Harry took another look and noticed that someone had been standing behind Ron the whole time. Harry’s smile dissolved into what he was sure was a look of awe as he just stared, speechless.
Ginny stood there looking to Harry as if she had transformed into a young woman during the few months since he had seen her last. He couldn’t help but wonder how it could be that he had never noticed just how beautiful she was.
Harry suddenly became aware that someone was speaking and managed to tear his eyes away from Ginny in time to hear Ron say, “…but she just wouldn’t take no for an answer. I hope you don’t mind Ginny coming along.”
“Uh, no, not at all,” Harry stammered, “its fine.”
“Would it be alright if I came inside as well?” Ginny asked.
“Sure,” Harry managed to say as his ears seemed to drink in the sound of her voice.
“You must have been up since early this morning, Harry,” Ron said looking at all of Harry’s things packed and ready to go. “I expected to get here and have to help you get your things together.”
“I just couldn’t settle down enough to get much sleep,” Harry admitted. “I’m all ready to go, but I just need to say goodbye first.”
Ron was a bit shocked that he would even want to, but he and Ginny both followed him toward the kitchen. As the three of them entered the kitchen, Uncle Vernon looked up and, although he was loath to have any wizards in his house, he had to admit the two who were with Harry seemed to look normal enough. He was glad to see they weren’t draped in any of those funny robes that would have given them away to the neighbors.
“I’m ready to leave now,” Harry said. “Uncle Vernon, you should be able to lower your intake of blood pressure medication now, and lead a much happier life. Dudley, I’ve completely vacated my room so you can reclaim it as your second bedroom, and if that isn’t enough room for you, I am also bequeathing you the cupboard under the stairs.”
Then Harry shocked them all by walking over to his Aunt Petunia saying, “I just wanted to thank you for taking me in when you could have sent me to an orphanage. I also wanted to thank you for the gift you gave me without knowing it.” Harry bent down and hugged Petunia.
Everyone was shocked, but Harry acted as though nothing was out of the ordinary. He then walked back over to Ron and Ginny before turning and giving a final wave of farewell. None of the Dursleys made the slightest move or said a word to Harry as he left.
Ron and Ginny helped Harry get his things out to the car, and Harry took one final look at 4 Privet Drive as they drove away, and he smiled.
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