Oh no! I gave in, I had to do it… here you go; an Alternate Universe fic, may you all forgive me!

Disclaimer: Copyright belongs exclusively to J K Rowling, it is not my intention to make any financial profit from this fic, and please don't sue me for hideous manipulation of the actual Harry Potter timeline and characters!

Hand-Me-Down Clothes

Of Beginnings

'Albus! If I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times: that boy must be moved!'

'Arabella, as long as they stop short of actually abusing the boy…'

'Oh honestly, Albus! Have your brains turned to mush? Little boys, children, need care, love and attention. Not just a roof over his head, hand-me-down clothes, and food!'

'There's nothing wrong with hand-me-down clothes, I remember one time myself when-'

'The boys are the same age! Every year we have this same conversation Albus, and every ruddy year you do nothing at all!' angrily exclaimed Arabella. There was a tense pause before Albus replied calmly:

'Being poor is not a good reason to remove Harry from their care.'

'What care? By Merlin, would you listen to me?'

'Arabella,' warned Albus, frowning.

'Shut up or I'll hex you into next week, Albus! They are not poor, they can afford to give him clothes of his own, and they can even afford to have a gardener but that's little Harry's job. One of them! Now I am sick and tired of arguing with you Albus, you sit there in your cosy little office, running that school of yours but it's time you came down and mucked in with the rest of us!'


'Did I say you could speak yet? Right then, I suggest that either you come down and see for yourself-'


'Or I decide to inform Minerva and Hagrid of little Harry's plight.'

'Ah.' Both of them were aware that where young Harry Potter was concerned, Minerva McGonagall tended to be a little irrational, and Hagrid, who had literally adored the deceased Lilly and James Potter, was fiercely protective of their orphaned child.

'Would it kill you to come and have a look Albus? It wouldn't be suspicious, you'd just be checking up on the boy- as you should be.'

'Arabella, I don't believe I have much choice, I will write to the Dursleys immediately.'

'No, don't do that Albus, I don't trust them as far as I could throw them, and that's not far at all considering how fat that young brat is. If you warn them, Harry will be forced to tell you lies by that pompous arse of a man Vernon.'

'Arabella!' laughed Albus trying to look reproving.

'I'm serious Albus, the man gets right up my nose, too bad he's a muggle or I'd challenge him to a duel -that'd teach him. Arrive tomorrow morning at 9am, it's Saturday so I know you'll be free.'

There was a popping noise like a cork exploding from its bottle and Arabella Figg's head disappeared from within the lime green flames, and the fire once again roared red and orange.

Albus Dumbledore was seated in a comfortable looking armchair beside his huge stone fireplace, he had long silvery white hair, an equally long beard, and wore burgundy robes with gold trimming, upon his crooked nose sat a pair of half moon glasses, behind which a pair of bright blue eyes sparkled. A tiny smile curved his lips and creased the laughter lines around his eyes, Arabella had never had any qualms about ordering him around and putting him in his place when his ego got too big; in her opinion. Abruptly he clapped his hands and with a loud crack a house-elf appeared in front of him, dressed in a pillow case with the Hogwarts crest, its great big green eyes turned upon him.

'Ah it's Paddy yes?' Albus was rewarded by a reverent nod. 'Would you mind asking Professor McGonagall to come and see me at her earliest convenience.'

'Yes sir. Of course sir! Is sir wanting anything else, Professor Dumbledore sir?'

'No thank you, Paddy, that is all. Incidentally would you like a sherbet lemon?'

'Oh no Sir!' said the house-elf looking properly shocked at this breach of protocol.

'Are you sure? They are quite lovely!' And as if to demonstrate his point Albus Dumbledore popped one into his mouth. 'Mmm-mmm,' he narrated joyfully and the house-elf looked wistfully at the red and gold paper bag in Dumbledore's hand.

'Po'esssssor Mc'onagarll, Padday hasss a messarge fawr 'ou fwrom Ssumsoresaw.'

'Good grief! What on earth! Paddy why are you speaking like that?' Minerva McGonagall peered over her square glasses at the sheepish looking house-elf.

'Sssweetsayy Po'esssor,' Paddy explained with a dribbling lisp.

'What? No never mind, what did the Headmaster say?'

'Polissse cans 'ou ssee 'im twwwo-nise.'

'Police? Oh- please?.'


'Stop hissing Paddy, you sound like a serpent. Now then… oh I think I understand. He wishes to see me?'

''ess 'oo 'ite!'

''oo 'ite?" blinked McGonagall, surfing in the confusing waves of obscurity.


'Oh dear, I'll just go and see him now I think.'

''ess!' grinned a successful Paddy, and slurped.

The next moment Paddy was alone again, as the Professor swept, slightly irritably, out. He made his way back down to the kitchens sucking on the hard lemon flavoured sweet Dumbledore had given him, and finding it quite agreeable.


'Minerva! Pull up a chair, do!'

'Did you ask for me?'

'Yes I did. Sherbet lemon?'

'No thank you, Albus,' answered Minerva McGonagall, looking disapproving at the very idea of sherbet lemons. She sat down in the adjacent armchair, its worn arms wriggled till she could rest her arms on them comfortably.

'I shall be absent tomorrow, you'll have the school to yourself whilst I am away.'

'Away! Doing what?'

'Oh this and that, this and that.' Albus popped another sherbet lemon into his mouth, and avoided his colleague's eyes.

'Albus, you haven't been away during term since your grandfather's funeral, need I remind you how long ago that was?'

'Hmm…I'm off to see Arabella actually,' he admitted.

'There's nothing wrong with Harry is there? I always said you shouldn't have left him with those muggles! Is he very badly hurt? Are you bringing him back here? Perhaps you should take Poppy with you, are you going to inform the Ministry? What-'

'Minerva! I'm just going to check up on the boy, that's all. I'm sure he's fine!'

'Check up on? Albus, it's been 6 years and all of a sudden you are going to "check up" on him?'

'Trust me Minerva.' There was an audible sound of gnawing teeth.

'I really dislike it when you say that Albus, it gives me an incredibly bad feeling.'

'Perhaps you have a hereto undiscovered talent for divination, Professor.'

'Albus, I do not appreciate that,' glared an indignant McGonagall.

'I do apologise Minerva,' gallantly offered Dumbledore.

'Nor that,' snapped the esteemed Transfiguration Professor, and forwned at his suspiciously innocent face. After a while she relented and smiled, Albus was sometimes quite senile, and had a habit of gently teasing you, she stood up, ready to leave. 'And please stop giving the house-elves sweets! You'll rot their teeth!'

It was a dry and warm morning on Privet Drive, the sky was the kind of blue you normally only see in storybooks or badly written poetry, and thin wisps of grey-white cloud stretched across the horizon. In number eight of Privet Drive in the sitting room, there was a distortion in the air and then there suddenly stood a man with an unusual amount of white hair.

'You're late,' said the old woman sourly, from the doorway where she leant on a crutch, a black cat wound around her ankles and hissed at the visitor.

'Good morning, Arabella.'

'Don't patronise me Albus,' ordered that elderly lady as she moved forward to receive his welcoming hug. 'You can go straight across to number four, they're all at home today, what on earth are you wearing?'

'Muggle clothing, I can't go around in my wizarding robes. Are they appropriate?' Albus raised a busy white eyebrow at her in query.

'Oh yes, definitely muggle clothing, a very accurate representation of what they wore 100 years ago!' The old lady tut-tutted in mock despair as Albus looked mildly surprised- he was wearing clothes from the Jane Austin period, complete with gold waistcoat watch and black ebony cane.

Arabella frowned in concentration for a moment and then waved her wand, a wave of purple light starting from his toes and then rising up, and the white waistcoat beneath the black two-tailed jacket and the black trousers disappeared, to be replaced with a smart navy blue suit, without tie.

'Much better, now if only I had a camera,' she smirked, smiling at him in his muggle suit and long white beard and hair. 'Now off you go, I have to feed my cats.' She shooed him out into the hallway, 'And mind you stay all day!'

'Of course Arabella,' placated Dumbledore, and tripped over the black cat as he opened the front door. He noticed that his shoes were lace-ups, black, shiny and had absolutely no heel on them as the black tomcat sunk his claws into them with enthusiasm.

'Blackie! Come here, Blackie. Breakfast is ready!' called Arabella and the said monster nimbly got up and chased an imaginary mouse all the way toward its owner's voice.

Albus Dumbledore quickly made his way across and down the street till he reached number four of Privet Drive, it had perfectly pruned shrubs lining the drive way and bunches of carefully selected colour co-ordinated flowers in weeded plots with neatly trimmed verges. Such perfectionism was surely an art, he advanced upon the average boring brown front door and pressed the doorbell which made the perfectly normal 'Ding Doing' sound. Inside he could hear sounds of activity, a muggle television, a hoover upstairs, and the clinking of cups in what he presumed was the kitchen.

'Mum! The doorbell just rang!' yelled a youth's voice.

'Harry!' screeched a woman, presumably the youth's mother. 'Get the door!' The hoover stopped, there was a light run down some stairs and then the door was flung open.

'Hello,' warily smiled a seven year old Harry Potter at him.

A/N: so should I continue or not? Is this fic to be or not to be? lol