Disclaimer: I do not own anything recognizable to the Harry potter stories. Some may come from the books, and same from the movies. None of that is owned by me. Nor did I create any of it. The only originality that is mine is the character Elizabeth Coolidge.
A young boy, appearing about nine, sat on the metallic bench at Kings Cross Station, his head bent, eyes covered by his shaggy hair. His arms were wrapped tightly against a large bird cage, forehead leaning against it and a large, snowy white owl sitting inside, nibbling affectionately on the fingers grippings it's cage. His t-shirt was baggy, faded and seemed to swallow him up, while his pants were rolled up multiple times in order for his feet to stick out the bottom, showcasing torn trainers, the bottoms flopping slightly away from the shoes in the very front. He had an old fashioned steamer trunk sitting on the ground before him that his feet rested upon. In essence, he looked like a dejected street urchin who was watching someone else's things.
Elizabeth stood a few feet in front of him, her dirty blonde hair tugged back into a high ponytail and her small lips, thinned and pulled into a frown as her hazel eyes took in the sight before adjusted the camouflage rucksack on her back. She could tell by the way the owl was acting, the owl was his, which meant to trunk probably was as well. Perhaps a scholarship student? She wasn't certain, but she didn't rightly care too much at the moment. What bothered her was the fact he had been sitting there for a good ten minutes now and hadn't seemed to be with anyone, nobody paid him much mind and he didn't look up and around as if waiting for anyone either. That didn't sit well with her at all. She looked around the station once more before sighing and walking over to him. She knelt down in front of him, not caring about getting her blue jeans dirty from the ground and zipped her simple black hoodie up to cover her white oxford shirt and ensure it didn't flap in the wind.
"Hey kiddo, is there truly a reason to look as if the whole world just ended?" She asked quietly in a southern American drawl, placing her hands gently on his knees and frowning, once more, as he tensed up at the contact.
He nodded dejectedly at her questioning and she realized he had tears silently falling down his cheeks.
"Is it truly so bad? What could be so bad, eh?" She asked, once more keeping her voice soft and steady.
"I've been expelled." He began. At first it seemed that was all he was going to say, before a sob tore through his body. "Ron promised! He promised we wouldn't get expelled. That everyone would just think it was an awesome prank to arrive at school by taking his dad's flying car. He said his dad installed an invisibility booster so it wasn't like the muggles would see. He promised!" He sobbed out, practically yelling the last part.
Elizabeth stood slowly, glaring around at those staring and whispering at them until they began making their way to where they were going again. She sighed, removed her rucksack and placed it under the bench and sat on the bench next to him, noticing the sobs were now tearing through his whole body, shaking the owl cage something terrible. She pried it out of his hands gently, placing it beside his feet on the steamer trunk and then slowly, gently, pulling him to sit sideways onto her lap, wrapping her arms around his waist and placing his head against her shoulder.
"We couldn't get on the platform. I don't know why. His family all made it through. We were the last ones to go through, but when we tried, our trolleys rammed straight into solid wall instead." He continued, his voice mumbled as he spoke into the bend of her neck, tears falling down her neck and into her hoodie.
"We tried again but they wouldn't go through, it was solid. And so we looked to the clock and watched as it slowly ticked over the last few minutes to eleven. The train left, we knew it had. It never waits and so we missed the train."
Elizabeth began to rock herself, and thereby, the young boy forward and back slightly and he snuggled deeper. Running her fingers gently through the back of his hair, soothingly, she hummed quietly to get him to continue talking.
"I suggested we wait by the car for his parents to find a way through and Ron said I was brilliant, that we could fly our way to Hogwarts. That his dad had the invisibility booster to keep us from being seen and we wouldn't get in trouble as we're allowed to do magic in emergencies and not being able to get on the platform to school is one. He made it sound so foolproof. He was the pureblood. He was the one who grew up in the wizarding world and his dad was the one who works for the ministry of magic. I figured he knew what he was talking about. I grew excited and agreed to go, so we went to the car and he took the drivers' seat and I took the front. We went invisible when he pushed the button and flew up, but the booster must have been faulty because we became visible again. So we rushed up to the cloudline and only dipped down to make sure we were still following the train. We thought everything was going fine. But we got hungry and really hot and thirsty after a while and when we were just making it to Hogwarts grounds, the engine died. We crashed into this tree and then the tree started thrashing the car.. It was gonna crush us!" He cried out in remembered horror.
"Shhh...Shhh..it's alright, you're alright. You made it out alive yeah?"
Harry quietly nodded, "Yeah, the engine came back on and the car reversed itself. The tree branches kept swinging, trying to hit us some more and the car dumped us and our things out before driving away into the forbidden forest. We grabbed our stuff and walked to the school, all Ron could go on about was his now broken wand and his dad killing him for losing the car. We thought we got away with it, till Snape came up behind us and forced us into his office before getting McGonagall and Dumbledore. He started ranting, showing a newspaper article about how we were seen by loads of muggles and all the trouble we had caused and how we were going to be expelled. He wouldn't let us talk, he wouldn't let us explain." Harry paused here as his breathing became erratic and he began sobbing in earnest.
Elizabeth just continued rocking back and forth, running her fingers through his hair and humming a quiet tune.
"They said they were disappointed in us. That I had Hedwig and should have used her to send a letter and waited to be picked up or gone to Diagon Alley down the road and floo'd to Hogsmeade and made our way up from there" He eventually continued. He was quiet once more, but she couldn't feel any more tears and he sounded exhausted. "Dumbledore took my wand and apologized, saying he had no choice. Then he snapped it, right there in front of me. He told us Ron's mother had already entered the castle to collect him and he'd be writing my Aunt and Uncle to expect me coming back to the train station early this morning. I got here about 5 and I've been waiting, but they're not here. They aren't coming. They never wanted me." He began crying again.
"Shhh...If they didn't want you, how'd you pay for your things?" She asked quietly, no accusation in her voice.
"My trust vault at Diagon."
"And do you know which direction Diagon is?"
"Gotta go down Charing Cross to the Leaky Cauldron."
"Alright then kiddo, I'ma pick you up now and we'll be getting headed that way now okay?" She asked as she stood, pulled her rucksack back onto her back and rearranged him so he sat on her hip, legs wrapped around her waist, arms around her shoulders and face still buried in her neck, allowing her to feel his nod of assent, as well as the wide yawn that overtook him.
She chuckled quietly before bending down to rearrange his luggage onto it's side, with the owl's cage sitting on top. Frowning at it, trying to figure out how to do this, she looked up as the security guard walked by with a trolley.
"Lad's been sitting here for hours now. Do you know him?" He asked, concern shining through his eyes along with suspicion.
"I won't lie sir, I don't know him from Sam. In his ramblings, he mentioned a bank on Charing Cross though. I'm planning on taking him there to ask them to access his records and get ahold of his relatives that way. They were supposed to have picked him up hours ago. I'm just trying to figure out how to get his things with me as he's falling asleep." She explained quietly, running her finger caringly through the child's hair once more.
"You'll take the trolley here. We have someone who drives around the area to pick up strays at the end of the day. Charing is about a mile. Take a right outside the station on A400 till you get to Euston Rd. You'll be takin' a slight left onto York and Charing will be on your left. It's a good bit of walking but you can manage, I'm sure. If you can't get hold of his parents, have the bank call me here. The name's Charlie Anderson." He explained after a few minutes of scrutinizing her before he piled the trunk in the trolley, owl cage on top.
Elizabeth nodded her thanks, readjusted the boy on her hip and then pushed the trolley in front of her with her free hand. She quickly made her way out of the station and down the road until she made it to the intersection for Charing Cross Rd. By this time, her arm had gotten tired from the child's weight and she had readjusted him so he was sitting on the trolley handle, but still leaning his head against her chest. Sure it was an awkward way to walk for her, but she dealt with it. She turned onto Charing Cross and slowly made her way up the street, watching carefully for anything called The Leaky Cauldron. Despite her slow walk and careful watch, she very nearly missed it and had to slowly back up to get to it. The Leaky Cauldron was nested between a Muggle bookshop and a record store. It was nestled between a bookshop on one side and a record store on the other. She slowly took the child back onto her hip, settled the trolley to the side of the doorway and opened the door, peeking inside. Inside the pub, it was dark and shabby, with a bar and a number of tables in the shadows of the corners. She frowned, not entirely happy with the looks and confused by the fact everyone was wearing cloaks of differing color and style, but kept her peace as she spotted an elderly barman, balding, missing his teeth and slightly humped back. He was talking to a customer but looked her way when she didn't immediately enter.
"I have a sleeping boy, his trunk and owl cage. Any chance i can get a hand?" She enquired.
The barman quickly nodded and made his way over to her, where he grabbed the trunk and cage and carried it in. Elizabeth followed him easily.
"All I have on me are a few British Pounds and some American dollars until I can make it to the bank and exchange everything good and proper." She began explaining as they made it back to the bar. "Can you tell me how much it would cost to stay the night?"
"You go on up to your room and get that boy of yours settled down good and proper. You can settle your tab before you leave." The barman explained, waving away her concern. "Will you be wanting a single bed to share, a two bed/single room or two separate rooms?" He enquired from behind the bar, looking at his different keys.
"A single with two beds please."
He grabbed a key, walked back around and lifted the cage and trunk before going up the stairs, leaving Elizabeth no choice but to follow. In stark contrast to the grubby downstairs of the pub, there were some unexpectedly pleasant rooms upstairs where passing a few men in cloaks passed them quietly. These rooms were reached by way of a handsome wooden staircase, and contained comfortable beds, highly polished oak furniture, a crackling fire which was always burning in the grate to welcome the visitor to their lodgings. Their own room, that they were lead to had two twin four poster beds on either side of a window looking out to an empty courtyard below.
"You can access the courtyard through the back door miss, and that will get you to Diagon Alley. Three up, two across, just tap with your wand. I'm Tom, the innkeeper and you let me know if you need anything else alright?" He offered as he placed the trunk at the foot of one beds and the owl cage and key to the room on top of the desk.
"Thank you for the help." She offered, laying the boy down on the bed, placing his glasses on the bedside table beneath the window and his shoes at the bottom of the bed. She then pulled the covers down, tucked him in and closed the bed curtains. Sitting down on the other bed after stowing her rucksack at the foot of it, she sighed and looked to the owl, whom was biting the bars of it's window.
"Now what do I do?" She asked quietly, before standing once more, opening the owl cage and allowing the owl to fly out and land on the bird stand near the door.
She looked around the room and noticed a second doorway. Opening it revealed a simple shower stall, toilet and sink in a cramped room. She smiled, walked back to the bed where she rummaged through her rucksack until she reemerged with a towel, clothes and a small bag of travel sized toiletries. She walked back into the bathroom to take a shower. When she came back out, she was in black slacks, dark blue oxford shirt, white socks and her black ankle high boots. The towel now wrapped around her neck as she slowly dried her hair with one end and looked towards the boy, smiling when she saw him sitting up in bed and looking to her with curiosity that quickly changed to a mix of horror and embarrassment as his memories of crying on her shoulder came back.
"Hey there kiddo. We're at The Leaky Cauldron and I've gotten us this room for the night. You wanna try getting hold of your relatives, go to the bank to get some money or go to the Ministry to see what your options are?" She asked as if she did this type of thing all the time.
"You're not British." He exclaimed in surprise as he finally registered her accent.
"Right you are kiddo, I'm American. Came to London to see about settling down and starting a business around here. Never expected to run into a runt in need of a new home too." She explained, smiling at the end to take the bite out of her words.
He flinched anyways, before glaring at her.
"The name's Harry, not Kiddo."
"Well, now that I know your name, Harry, I will endeavor to use it." She offered cheerfully, completely ignoring his glare.
She noticed his confused look and sat down on the bed opposite his.
"Confused about why I'm doing this, or about the word endeavor?"
"Well, I'm doing this 'cause you looked like you needed some help and I've always been a sucker for people who needed help. I can't afford to do charity, since I'm just moving here and have to start up a new business and whatnot. I can, on the other hand, lend a helping hand and have you work for me in my new shop part-time after school hours once we get you in a new school and me a shop. That's if you want to of course. As for the word endeavor, it simply means I will try my best to do so."
Harry looked at her in astonishment as she explained, frowning sadly at the idea of a new school and looking hopeful at her idea for him working off his stay. He was used to working for his relatives so as not to be a burden, and she had explained it was since money would be tight for her, not simply because he should the way his relatives had done it. He nodded eagerly and then thought back to her original question.
"I suppose we should go to the ministry first, to see what we should do and I ought to go to the bank to find out how much money I have. That way I can pay rent until you have the shop set up for me to work at. If that's ok?" He asked, the last question quiet in it's uncertainty.
Elizabeth nodded and waved to the bathroom.
"You should get showered and dressed in your best clothes than, so we make a good impression. While you do that, I'll head downstairs and ask Tom how to get to the ministry." She explained, before getting up and walking out the door.
Harry watched her go before digging for his school uniform and robe as well as toiletries and heading for the bathroom to shower. Elizabeth was already sitting on her bed again by the time he came out.
"Right, while you were in there, I realized I never introduced myself. I'm Elizabeth Coolidge and I'm twenty three. Came here shortly after getting out of the military back in America. As I said, I plan to open up a shop. I was gonna sell books I had written up and nicknacks I had collected over time in the military. I supposed I can see about getting a storefront with a flat above it here on Charing so we're close to your shopping district yeah? Tom told me how to get to the ministry, he'll be flagging what is known as the Knight Bus for us when you're ready." She offered up.
Harry just watched her, nodding along before he tossed his used towel and toiletries in his trunk, closed it and looked to her expectantly. This just caused her to chuckle, stand and ruffle his hair before heading out.
"I noticed you guys use different currency, would you mind covering the bill for the room tonight and I'll take it out of your first month's rent?" She asked as they walked down the stairwell.
Harry just nodded, pulled out a coin purse he had thought to put in his pocket before following her out and handed Tom the money as he lead them outside. Tom took two of the galleons before returning the rest to Harry, stuck his wand in the air and waiting. Harry and Elizabeth both jumped in surprise, before smiling in embarrassment at each other after a loud Boom brought a large, purple triple decker bus screeching to a halt in front of them. Tom nodded to them and went back inside as a tall skinny woman with lanky black hair and a plain black robe opened the doors.
"Welcome to the Knight Bus, emergency transport for the stranded witch or wizard. My name is Electa Carrow and I will be your conductor this afternoon." She reeled off in a bored voice.
Elizabeth and Harry walked onto the bus, surprised to find the bus does not seem to have much in the way of safety features as there are just seats that are apparently not bolted down.
"We need to get to the Ministry visitor's entrance." Elizabeth said stiffly, frowning at the seats and wrapping her arm protectively around Harry.
Harry stiffened at first, before he realized what she was doing Then he could help but gape slightly in surprise that she was being protective. Elizabeth just smiled down at him sympathetically before turning back to the witch when she began talking again.
"That'll be eleven sickles each, thirteen if you want hot chocolate."
"We'll go without, thanks." Elizabeth replied as Harry handed over another Galleon.
He put his change back in the pouch before the took a pair of seats near the door and sat down. The bus sped off, the chairs sliding backwards a couple feet as they did so. The driver seemed to be swerving every which way, having difficulty staying in the lane, or even on the street. Everything they may have hit, from post boxes to lap posts to buildings seemed to jump out of the way. Elizabeth braced an arm across Harry's chest, gripping the opposite side of his chair for stability, to act as a seat belt of sorts, as her other hand gripped the arm rest tightly to support herself. It wasn't even ten minutes later they came to a screeching halt, their chairs sliding forward and it taking a great effort for Elizabeth to keep herself and Harry from doing the same. They stood on shaky legs, climbed off and Harry followed her confusedly into an old red telephone box, which was missing several panes of glass and stood before a heavily graffitied wall inside the alley they were dropped off at.
"Let's see… six…" she dialed the number, "two… four… and another four… and another two…So….it spells out magic?" She asked confusedly, sharing a slightly amused look with Harry.
As the dial whirred smoothly back into place, a cool female voice sounded inside the telephone box, not from the receiver in Elizabeth's hand, but as loudly and plainly as though an invisible woman were standing right beside them.
"Welcome to the Ministry of Magic. Please state your name and business."
"Um…" Elizabeth replied, uncertain if she should talk into the receiver before shrugging and doing so anyways.
"Elizabeth Coolidge, here to escort Harry Potter, who has been asked to make an Educational Inquiry…"
"Thank you," said the cool female voice. "Visitors, please take the badges and attach it to the front of your robes."
There was a click and a rattle, and Harry saw something slide out of the metal chute where returned coins usually appeared. He picked it up: it was a pair of square silver badges with Harry Potter, Education Inquisition and Elizabeth Coolidge, Education Inquisition on it. Harry pinned it to the front of his robe, Elizabeth to her oxford shirt as the female voice spoke again.
"Visitors to the Ministry, you are required to submit to a search and present your wand for registration at the security desk, which is located at the far end of the Atrium."
The floor of the telephone box shuddered. They were sinking slowly into the ground. They both watched apprehensively as the pavement seemed to rise up past the glass windows of the telephone box until darkness closed over their heads. Then they could see nothing at all; they could hear only a dull grinding noise as the telephone box made its way down through the earth. After about a minute a chink of golden light illuminated his feet and, widening, rose up their bodies, until it hit the both in the face and they had to blink to stop their eyes from watering.
"The Ministry of Magic wishes you a pleasant day," said the woman's voice.
The door of the telephone box sprang open and Elizabeth stepped out of it, followed by Harry, both of whose mouth had fallen open at the sight before them. They were standing at one end of a very long and splendid hall with a highly polished, dark wood floor. The peacock blue ceiling was inlaid with gleaming golden symbols that kept moving and changing like some enormous heavenly notice board. The walls on each side were paneled in shiny dark wood and had many gilded fireplaces set into them. Every few seconds a witch or wizard would emerge from one of the left-hand fireplaces with a soft whoosh. On the right-hand side, short queues of wizards were forming before each fireplace, waiting to depart.
Halfway down the hall was a fountain. A group of golden statues, larger than life-size, stood in the middle of a circular pool. Tallest of them all was a noble-looking wizard with his wand pointing straight up in the air. Grouped around him were a beautiful witch, a centaur, a goblin and a house-elf. The last three were all looking adoringly up at the witch and wizard. Something which cause Elizabeth to look at Harry enquiringly about, just to see him just as mystified by it. Glittering jets of water were flying from the ends of their wands, the point of the centaur's arrow, the tip of the goblins hat and each of the house-elf's ears, so that the tinkling hiss of falling water was added to the pops and cracks of the Separators and the clatter of footsteps as hundreds of witches and wizards, most of whom were wearing glum, early-morning looks, strode towards a set of golden gates at the far end of the hall.
"I guess it's this way," Elizabeth stated, after looking around and watching where everyone went.
They joined the throng, wending their way between the Ministry workers, some of whom were carrying tottering piles of parchment, others battered briefcases; still others were reading the Daily Prophet while they walked. As they passed the fountain Harry saw silver Sickles and bronze Knuts glinting up at him from the bottom of the pool. A small smudged sign beside it read:ALL PROCEEDS FROM THE FOUNTAIN OF MAGICAL BRETHREN WILL BE GIVEN TO ST. MUNGO'S HOSPITAL FOR MAGICAL MALADIES AND INJURIES.
They stepped out of the stream of Ministry employees heading for the golden gates. Seated at a desk to the left, beneath a sign saying Security, a badly shaven wizard in peacock blue robes looked up as they approached and put down his Daily Prophet.
"We're visitors. I do not have a wand on hand, and his was snapped as he was expelled earlier today. We need to go to the educational department to see what, if anything can be done." Elizabeth spoke quietly, yet authoritatively, instantly grabbing the man's attention.
He grunted, before bending down, coming back up with a large, dusty book. He flipped it open and proved it to be a visitors log. He pointed to the quill and ink on his desk and watched as Harry signed first, gaping in surprise when he saw Harry's name, but keeping quiet after Elizabeth cleared her throat and gave him a pointed glare. Elizabeth watched how Harry signed, before doing so herself.
Step over here," said the wizard.
Harry walked closer to him first and the wizard held up a long golden rod, thin and flexible as a car aerial, and passed it up and down Harry's front and back. He then did the same as Elizabeth stepped up. When finished, he waved them on towards the metal gates at the end of the hall.
Jostled slightly by the crowd, they made their way through the gates, where at least twenty lifts stood behind wrought golden grilles in a smaller hall. They quickly joined the crowd around one of them.
With a great jangling and clattering a lift descended in front of them; the golden grille slid back, they stepped into the lift with the rest of the crowd and Harry found himself jammed against the side of the wall. Several witches and wizards were looking at him curiously; he stared at his feet, trying to avoid catching anyone's eye, flattening his fringe as he did so. Elizabeth, who stood directly behind him, squeezed his shoulder gently to remind him he wasn't alone. He looked over his shoulder at her and smiled gratefully.
The grilles slid shut with a crash and the lift ascended slowly, chains rattling, while the same cool female voice Harry had heard in the telephone box rang out again.
"Level Seven, Department of Magical Games and Sports, incorporating the British and Irish Quidditch League Headquarters, Official Gobstones Club and Ludicrous Patents Office."
The lift doors opened. Harry glimpsed an untidy-looking corridor, with various posters of Quidditch teams tacked lopsidedly on the walls. One of the wizards in the lift, who was carrying an armful of parchment, extricated himself with difficulty and disappeared down the corridor.
The doors closed, the lift juddered upwards again and the woman's voice announced:
"Level Six, Department of Magical Transportation, incorporating the Floo Network Authority, Broom Regulatory Control, Portkey Office and Apparation Test Center."
Once again the lift doors opened and four or five witches and wizards got out; at the same time, several paper aeroplanes swooped into the lift. Harry stared up at them as they flapped idly around above his head; they were a pale violet color and he could see Ministry of Magic stamped along the edge of their wings.
"No clue what those are...maybe how they get messages back and forth?" Elizabeth suggested, looking up at them in curiosity herself.
Harry nodded, that did make sense after all.
"Level Five, Department of International Magical Co -operation, incorporating the International Magical Trading Standards Body, the International Magical Office of Law and the International Confederation of Wizards, British Seats."
When the doors opened, two of the memos zoomed out with a few more of the witches and wizards, but several more memos zoomed in, so that the light from the lamp flickered and flashed overhead as they darted around it.
"Level two, Department of Magical Law Enforcement, incorporating the Improper use of magic office, Auror Headquarters, and Wizengamot Administration services."
The grill opened once again, the last few got off here and Elizabeth pushed Harry forwards as well.
"I didn't hear anything about Education, but your expulsion was due to breaking the law and the only floor left would logically be the minister's offices. So let's find someone to talk to here eh?" She suggested, trying to keep her voice down.
A woman just ahead of them stopped suddenly, and turned to face them. She was a square jawed woman, with close-cropped greying hair and a monocle on her eye. She looked quite stern as she peered over them critically, her lips thin.
" I am Madam Bones, Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. I do not know why exactly you are here, but what you said peaked my interest." She explained. "Follow me."
She then turned and headed off down the hall, causing Elizabeth and Harry to hurry after her until they reached an office door, by passing the secretarial desk, and entered. The office was utilitarian with nothing more than a desk, chair and two wooden straight-backed chairs in front of it, filing cabinets lining the walls. Madam Bone sat in the chair behind her desk and Elizabeth and Harry took the two in front.
"My name is Elizabeth Coolidge, I am an American whom just arrived very early this morning via plane. I was at Kings Cross Train station, trying to figure out how to get to a hotel and, later on, a realtor's office. Instead I spy Mr. Potter here," At this Madam Bones' eyes snap to Harry, who's head is bent and fingers notting themselves in his lap nervously, before she returns her attention to Elizabeth.
"He looked the worse for ware, hugging his wol cage desperately, looking at his lap desolately and wearing clothes that even second hand shops would have tossed out." She continued, placing a reassuring hand on Harry's shoulder as she saw him flinch slightly at his description, squeezing gently.
" I approached after roughly ten minutes of waiting to see if anyone was with him or coming for him before approaching and asking what was wrong. I got quite an interesting story out of him about being prevented from entering the platform to catch the train ride to school, being convinced by his pureblood, ministerial employee son, that it would be perfectly all right and legal to take his father's car and flying it to school. They inevitably crashed it after being sighted by multiple people, were taken to the teacher's office and summarily expelled, wand snapped and sent home on the train. From his condition and his lack of mention, I do not think they even checked him for injury or fed him first." She explained before bending forward and looking to Harry.
"I apologize Harry, that last bit only hit me just now or I would have taken you for food and medical attention myself." She offered quietly.
Harry looked up at her and smiled tentatively before looking to Madam Bones.
"Mr. Potter, is what she said true?"
Harry nodded, "Yes ma'am"
"The name of your friend?"
"Ron Weasley, ma'am"
Madam Bones frowned but nodded in acknowledgement. "I will lead you both to a conference room shortly and have one of my healer trained Aurors come examine you while I send my secretary for food. Now, what were you wanting to know about education?" She questioned, turning to look at Elizabeth once more.
"If there is anything that can be done of course." She explained, straightening up and frowning in displeasure.
"This was a legal matter that should have been handled by you. The school year had not started and therefore neither boy should have been expelled. They most certainly should not have had their wand snapped without the order of Magical Law Enforcement or the courts ordering it. So I want to know if Mr. Potter is allowed to request compensation, get a new wand and instead attend another school or get home schooled."
Madam Bones sat silently, staring at the two of the for a few minutes. While Harry fidgeted nervously in his chair, looking down at his hands once more, Elizabeth merely stared back at Madam Bone, awaiting her verdict.
"You are correct, this is indeed a legal matter and I will send an Auror to interview Mr. Weasley and have the one healing Mr. Potter interview him for a full statement." She acknowledged before turning to Harry.
"I remember hearing, Mr. Potter, that you received a warning that expulsion would be the step taken should you do any more magic in front of muggles again just last month."
"That wasn't me!" Harry yelled, looking up defiantly.
Madam Bones frowned as Elizabeth knelt quickly in front of Harry, both hands on his shoulders, squeezing them briefly in reprimand.
"Mr. Potter, Madam Bones is offering help. You will show her respect, and not raise your voice. Now, explain calmly and in a proper tone." She stated coolly, frown on her face.
Harry flushed in embarrassment and looked at his knees as he fidgeted before looking up to Elizabeth and nodding. She smiled gently, squeezed his shoulders reassuringly and retook her seat. Harry turned to Madam Bones, a blush on his cheeks.
"I apologize for yelling ma'am. I did not cast magic at my home. I had been sent to my room for the evening to find a creature jumping on my bed. He introduced himself as Dobby the House Elf and said he came to warn me of dangerous things about to happen at Hogwarts. He said he couldn't tell me what or who's plotting them and began beating himself when I asked. Turned out he'd been stealing my mail all summer in hopes I'd be more willing to promise not to go back if I thought none of my friends were writing to me. When I refused he ran outside my bedroom, downstairs where my family was entertaining business guests and into the kitchen where I found him floating the pudding bowl. Harry paused to swallow here, "I begged him not to and he said he was sorry, that he had no choice, that it was for my own good. Then the pudding bowl dropped, crashing to the floor and he snapped his fingers and was gone….just...gone. My relatives thought I did it, and then any argument I could have made was thrown out the window by the arrival of the ministry owl. The guests hadn't seen the magic but they were freaked by the owl and left quickly after that." He explained quietly, looking in Madam Bones' eyes and silently pleading with her to believe him.
Madam Bones sighed as she watched Elizabeth pull Harry into a sideways hug, one which he quickly accepted and buried his face into her side.
"I will have an official statement of that taken as well. Please follow me."
Madam Bones stood and they followed as she took them to a nearby conference room, waving another to follow them as well. The one who entered last, a curious look on his face as he took in the sight of Elizabeth standing, hugging Harry to her side was a tall, African man with gold hoop earings and a bald head. It took everything Elizabeth had to keep from blushing as she slowly and gently pushed Harry into a seat.
"Am I correct in assuming that I must leave the room while the statements are being made?" She asked, looking at Madam Bone, whose lip was twitching in amusement.
"Follow me and I'll lead you to the food area." She explained.
She waited patiently as Elizabeth kissed Harry gently on the forehead, glared at the man to be nice and then followed her out of the room.
"Am I correct in assuming you had no knowledge of the magical world before this morning."
Elizabeth tensed at the question and began to watch Madam Bones warily.
"You are indeed. I was in the military in America before I came here. I plan to purchase or rent out a storefront with a flat above it on Charing Cross so that Mr. Potter has easy access to Diagon Alley. If he is not permitted regular schooling, but is given the okay for homeschooling, I will teach him theory through books while seeking out tutors to teach him his practicals. If he is refused any schooling, I will still take care of him. He will work in my shop part-time or pay rent with his money he has, until I have a steady enough income to support him without it. If I could do so now, I would." She explained.
Madam Bones listened as the rode the lift, and remained silent as they exited onto the atrium floor. She led them to a cafeteria where she grabbed a few pre-wrapped sandwiches and a case of butterbeer. She paid for them herself, still keeping quiet and silently marveling at Elizabeth's lack of fidgeting. They re-entered the lift and she didn't speak until they were once more on her floor.
"I will allow this, as I have little doubt it was Mr. Potters desolation and despair that kept him from realizing his mistake. He still doesn't seem to have and I will be discussing the seriousness of that with him. Though, I must admit having difficulty finding fault, as you seem quite good at blending in and pretending that you belong. In addition, I have more than enough money that I don't actually need to work, I merely wish to, so I will open an account at Gringotts under Mr. Potter's name and put in enough money that should cover the cost of rent for the next six months. I will write a letter to Mr. Ollivander explaining the circumstances so that Mr. Potter may purchase a new wand. Lastly I will send a letter to the headmistress of a day school here in London. It is for the younger children, too young for Hogwarts, but the teachers will more than likely be willing to do his practical lessons if you work on his theory. He will have to attend their Wizard classes for the youngsters to teach him about our world, culture and laws as well. Is this acceptable to you?" She inquired.
Elizabeth nodded just before they entered the conference room, saying a quiet "Thank you" as she passed and entered, sitting next to Harry and looking at him worriedly. Harry smiled at her reassuringly and Madam Bones nodded as the man walked out, handing over the file with his report within.
"I had a small cut on my head, but nothing serious." Harry explained.
Elizabeth smiled in relief, and then again in thanks as Madam Bones placed down the food and drink before walking out, closing the door behind. They both grabbed food and drink and began to eat, exclaiming over the taste of the butterbeer. Throughout the meal, Elizabeth explained the conversation she had with Madam Bones, smirking as first horror at the realization he told a muggle and then relief over being able to get a new wand crossed Harry's features.
When they finished eating, and were just sitting back to enjoy the last of their drinks, a knock sounded at the door, before Madam Bones entered again. She sat across the table from Harry, causing him to squirm again, before going into a brief lecture on the importance of the Statute of Secrecy and the seriousness of breaching it. Shortly before she finished, the man from earlier stepped inside and waited by the door for her to finish, a new file in his hands.
Harry was staring at his hands in his lap, shoulders slumped, by the time she finished and Madam Bones and Elizabeth turned to the man.
"I didn't introduce myself to you before, ma'am. I am Auror Kingsley Shacklebolt." He began, his voice smooth and deep. "I sent Hardgrove to the Weasley residence to get Ronald Weasley's statement. I also did some searching and found there is a wizarding dwelling and shop that is directly across from the Leaky Cauldron. It is currently up for sale as the owner had gotten too many fines for selling magical items in the open."
He placed the file down on the table and handed two copies of parchment to Madam Bones and Elizabeth.
"It has a potions lab in the cellar with an ingredients cupboard and a potions storage cupboard. The ground floor consists of the shop front with glass counters and shelves designed to carry the herbs, potions ingredients, equipment and potions books the previous owner was trying to sell. The back part of the room contains a spacious office, an ingredient preparation station and the stairwells leading up and down stairs. The first floor contains a sitting room, kitchen, dining room guest bathroom and two bedrooms with a shared full bathroom in wizard space, the second floor contains the master suite and a library. The roof had been turned into a greenhouse, warded to hide it's contents from muggle eyes. It was possessed by the ministry when the owner failed to follow laws and was inevitably arrested. The sale price is forty thousand Galleons."
Madam Bones looked it over before turning to Elizabeth.
"In muggle money, that is two hundred thousand pounds. Can you afford that?"
"I can indeed, once I get to my bank. That's half what I expected to pay. Potions, could such things be made by muggles? I wouldn't sell the in the storefront but perhaps I could offer mail order and the witch or wizard would have to come to pick it up, bundled and packaged to prevent muggles from having any idea what it is while I use the actual storefront to sell incense, oils, bathing products and the books and knickknacks I originally planned to sell. I could also sell school supplies such as fountain pens and parchment notebooks from the back office for the muggleborns to use as well." Elizabeth suggested, watching Madam Bones' reaction to see if what she wanted to do would be illegal or not.
"As long as the wizarding items are owl order only, nothing magical what so ever sold up front and your packaging indeed hides what it is being sold, then I can agree to it."
Elizabeth smiled and nodded her head.
"Shall I return with the money in hand or can I make the purchase at Gringotts?" She inquired.
"Just bring that packet to Gringotts as well as the money and they'll give you the deed. There are already anti-apparition, anti-portkey and notice me not wards where necessary and I will have someone from the floo network department contact you about connecting your back office and your home." Madam Bones responded, already standing and preparing to leave.
Elizabeth and Harry stood as well and the four left the room to go their different ways. Elizabeth and Harry quickly went to the floo, took it to the Atrium and then headed to the muggle alley. Upon arriving there, they realized went to the street and hailed a taxi.
"Where to miss?"
"I need to go to the CitiBank please"
The driver nodded and got them to the nearest location quickly, where they climbed out, Elizabeth paid and then walked into the bank. She waved Harry to the seats for waiting, warning she'd be a while before going to talk to a teller. She wasn't kidding, as it took nearly half an hour before she came back to Harry carrying a cloth bag and waved him to follow. She quickly hailed another taxi, directing them to Charing Cross this time. She paid the man after the climbed out, and examined the building she was about the buy with its wall to wall windows on the ground floor before turning and leading Harry into the Leaky Cauldron.
"Tom, would you mind terribly opening the way into Diagon the first time for us?" She asked, as she walked up to the bar.
Tom nodded and went about showing them how to do it, surprising Harry as he seemed to fail to notice yet just who he was. Though it didn't last long as To was walking away after tapping the bricks and stopped short.
"Harry Potter! Why couldn't he have opened it?" He asked in surprise.
"Mr. Potter unfortunately has need of a new wand. So he couldn't open it and I figured it was best to have someone who knows how to let us in for in case their was some security feature or other" Elizabeth explained, her tone saying that he should already have known this before she walked through the archway.
Harry followed quickly after her.
"How did he know who you are Harry?"
"I..well you see...I'm famous in the Wizarding world. It's not for anything I did either so it's real stupid. A dark wizard killed my parents when I was a baby and tried to kill me too. That's where I got my scar from." At this, Harry rubbed his lightning shaped scar that was on his forehead before flattening his bangs subconsciously. "I survived somehow, a curse that no one ever survived before and the wizard disappeared. Everyone thinks I killed him, which is stupid, I as a baby. And he isn't dead either, he was possessing my Defense Against The Dark Arts teacher last year, trying to steal the Philospher's Stone Dumbledore was hiding at the school. Me and my friends stopped him before he could, but he still got away as this shade or spirit or something."
Elizabeth frowned and looked down at Harry.
"Well then you'll have to learn defence, won't you." She stated, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.
They walked into the bank, Elizabeth nodded her head slightly at the goblins that bowed to them, before walking to one of the teller lines. The remained in silence after that until they were at the front of the line.
"Next!" The goblin barked, glowering at the both of them.
" I need to purchase this deed, I am doing so with British muggle pounds, as I was assured would be permitted." She stated in clipped tones, placing down the file and the cloth bag.
The goblin sneered at her, viewed the file and then began pulling out the bundles of muggle money, counting them. He nodded, put it back and pushed both items back to her.
"You'll have to speak with one of the managers in back about that. Is there anything else?"
"Yes, Mr. Potter here was expelled from school, the money that was sent needs to be reclaimed for this school year and he will need an accounting on how much he has. What options are available to find out what all he owns within your bank?""Mr. Potter will need to speak with his account manager about reclaiming the gold. As for his total, that would have been in his last bank statement, sent out yesterday." The goblin frowned as he saw the shock and confusion that met him at that statement from the boy. "As for the complete audit of all he owns, purchase of the Meae Familiae Arbor potion as well as supplies and services to search and see if he is able to inherit from any deceased family members that appear on the list or the Hereditas potion to see what his magic acknowledges as his inheritance. The second is much more expensive."
"The pricing of the second?"
"Four hundred, fifty Galleons."
"Two thousand, two hundred and fifty pound then? Good thing there is more money in there than strictly necessary to purchase the property. I will also pay for that."
"I will send you to the Potter Account Manager and he can deal with that and your purchase of property than"
Regora bowed her head in thanks and then followed the goblin that was waved over to lead them. Harry following behind quietly. They were soon lead into a utilitarian office quite similar to Madam Bones, except there were weapons and tapestries of battle decorating the walls. They sat when waved towards the seat.
"What can I do for you?"
"Many things, first off, Mr. Potter has not received any bank statement this month, judging by his reaction out front, I do not believe he ever has. Do you have any idea of why that may be?"
The goblin sneered and looked to Harry who nodded in confirmation.
"No letter from us at all Mr. Potter?"
"Any letter from anyone?"
"I got hogwarts letters last summer, and this summer there was a house elf who was stealing my letters but I saw and recognised the letters being from my two friends and Hagrid only. And I got my hogwarts letter after he stopped later on this summer. Oh and a letter from the Ministry for doing magic." He explained
The goblin's sneer turned into a frown. He waved his hand at Harry and spoke in a guttural language, frowning and sneering at the same time when Harry lit up a dark purple around his body and a bright white with tints of green over his scar.
"You have blood based magic surrounding you like a shield Mr. Potter as well as an owl redirection ward. Lastly, you have a piece of soul within your scar that is just barely being kept at bay by the blood shield." The goblin sneered, causing Harry to pale and Elizabeth to frown, narrowing her eyes.
"What actions would you suggest sir?"
"Find out where the mail is being redirected, then either remove the ward, or keep it on per your decision. The blood shield is good to keep up as it is near perfect protection. It will stay with him for the remainder of his life, stronger if he lives with blood relatives. As for the soul, I would suggest hiring our curse breakers to remove it immediately."
"The cost of the letter tracking and soul removal?"
"Free as an apology for not realizing or looking into Mr. potters lack of responses to our letters. What else do you need done here?"
"Purchase of the Meae Familiae Arbor and Hereditas potion and this property, as well as converting the remaining money into wizard money."
The goblin looked over the file, counted out the money and nodded before leaving the office. Elizabeth and Harry remained seated, Harry fidgeting while Elizabeth remained still as they waited. After five minutes, the goblin returned, handing Elizabeth the deed to the property, a set of keys, a cloth pouch that jingled with the sound of coins and handed Harry two potions vials filled with a blood red potion and a lime green potion.
"You can spill blood, pull hair or spit as long as it goes into the potion. Then shake it until the red one turns black as ink, dip the quill from the desk into it until all is absorbed and place the tip on the parchment and allow it to do it's work. The other potion requires you to fill it with blood until the liquid turned orange. After that I will pour it onto one of the agreed upon item. Would you like a book or tapestry? If you want it on a wall instead, you will keep the potion and toss it on the desired wall."
"Can I have it on tapestry? The cost coming from my own vault." Harry answered quietly, adding the last one on before Elizabeth could pay any more, plans already forming for him to pay her back what she spent on these potions as soon as possible.
The Goblin nodded so he first spit into the red potion, shook it and then let the quill do it's thing before looking at the next potion. He didn't noticed Elizabeth pull a switch blade from the side of her boot but he felt grab his wrist and looked at her questioningly. She merely sliced his inner wrist at the junction of his wrist meeting palm, causing him to gasp and wince in pain, and tilted his hand over the potion. She put the blade in her lap and grabbed the now empty bank bag from CitiBank and used it as a makeshift tourniquet once the required blood was spilt. He looked at her wide eyed before she waved hi to the tapestry the Goblin had pulled out. The tapestry was a simple black color and once the potion was poured onto it, silvery names, dates of birth and death, and lines connecting everyone began writing itself. At the very top of the tapestry was Andriotic Peverell and Ovelia Peverell nee Canders, it shows three brothers; Ignotus, Cadmus and Antioch. For Cadmus and Antioch, it shows their family tree for three generations before stopping. It shows Ignotus marrying and the line continuing, branching out, the main Peverell line ending with the sole female member left marrying the Potter line. That continues, with a lot more names Harry recognized such as Longbottom, Bones, McKinnon, Prewitt, even Malfoy, Nott and Flint. Once they left the main branch and inheritor it would show only the first three generations before stopping. It finally came down to Harry Potter, son of James Potter and Lily Potter nee Evans as well as the parents, sister, brother in law and nephew of Lily.
Harry couldn't help but stare as he looked at all the second and third and fourth cousins he had that were still alive and in the wizarding world, some he got along with, Like Neville Longbottom and Ron Weasley, while others he couldn't stand, like Draco Malfoy. He didn't stop looking until he heard Elizabeth call his name. He turned to find a new woman standing there in black work robes, wand out and blonde hair tied into a messy bun.
"This is the cursebreaker, she will be handling your soul piece." The goblin explained curtly as he continued pulling out files and folders from the filing cabinets and placing the on his desk.
Harry nodded, too nervous to speak. The cursebreaker smiled encouragingly before casting a quick spell he didn't understand. He didn't have time to duck before he was hit with a white light and felt a tugging sensation in his head. He fell to his knees as the light suddenly flashed from his forehead to a silver box in the cursebreaker's hand. She nodded, set it down on the goblin's desk and walked out. Elizabeth walked over and eased Harry into his seat before turning to the Goblin as he cleared his throat.
"The letter sent and redirected was redirected to a Mail Vault under your name, place by Albus Dumbledore November 1st., 1981. There are loads of what can only be construed as fan mail. As we have been unknowingly aiding and abetting theft of mail, we will send one of our cursebreaker teams through to thoroughly check it for any curses, potions or harmful magic. We will then add a ward around the vault, warning us it needs to be checked whenever such an item or letter goes through it and deal with it for the next fifty years should you decide to keep the mail direction ward up."
Elizabeth nodded when Harry turned to her questioningly, so Harry turned back and nodded his assent.
"What should we do with all dangerous items and letters?"
"I want all of it catalogued. What the item or letter is, what it looks like, for any spelled or potioned items, what spells or potions are on it no matter if they are what you would consider dangerous or not, the purpose or function of said item and of course who sent it." Elizabeth stated.
The goblin merely, nodded, making notes without arguing about the unsaid order that all items were to be catalogued rather than just the dangerous ones. He then handed over the stack of files he had, with the parchment list from the potion at the top.
"These are all files on your inheritance, who gave you what, how, when and if they listed why. If all they gave was a vault then that is all that is listed. The vault numbers you inherited are all listed with what you can currently access, when you can access them, and what you have to do if there is something other than reaching a certain age to inherit."
"How much for a full audit and cataloguing of all vaults similar to the cataloging of the mail vault?" Elizabeth asked, as she peered at the list.
"There are a total of twenty seven vaults there, we will charge one hundred galleons for any vault that has items other than money within."
"Charge me when you finish then." Harry stated, he only needed a quick peek at the top page to know he could afford it.
The Goblin nodded and Elizabeth stood, Harry following her example. She rolled the tapestry up, using the silk rope at the ends to tie it closed and tossed it over her shoulder, holding the files to her chest with her other hand.
"Have a profitable day." She stated before nodding for Harry to get the door.
They walked quickly out of the bank and carried the stuff back to The Leaky Cauldron and their room, gaining many an odd or curious look along the way. She tossed the tapestry on top of Harry trunk, set the files onto the desk near the door, the bag of wizard money and the deed into a side pocket of her rucksack. She pulled out a small first aid kit after some digging and sat Harry onto his bed before properly cleaning and bandaging his wrist. She then lay down on the bed, sighing.
"I am tired, Mr. Potter. How about you get some grub from downstairs and bring it up, we'll eat and I'll sleep. We can move into the shop across the street tomorrow." She stated.
Harry nodded, ran down the stairs and came back up shortly after with some pea soup, dinner rolls and pumpkin juice for both of them. They both ate and then went to sleep soon after, for it was a tiring day for both of them.
Elizabeth woke early the next morning, quickly went through her morning ritual of shower and dressing, this time in a pair of blue jeans and a black t-shirt. When she climbed out of the bathroom, Harry was up and stumbling in to do the same, except he was putting on another school uniform sans the robe. Elizabeth shook her head in amusement and waited for Harry to finished.
"Pack those files into your trunk, as well as the tapestry if you can fit it. If not, i'll carry it across."
Harry nodded and put in the files but shook his head, closing the trunk before even trying to fit the tapestry in. He grabbed the empty owl cage, Hedwig was apparently out hunting at the moment, and cleaned it before collapsing it and packing it away as already had her rucksack on and the tapestry tossed over her shoulder again so they headed out, handing Tom the key to the room before heading across the street. Elizabeth quickly unlocked the door on the side of the building which led them to the hallway with stairs.
Climbing up to the first floor she lay the tapestry down in the first room they entered, which was the sitting room. The dining room and Kitchen were to their right, an open floor plan except for a island counter in the center of the kitchen. There was already a sturdy oak dining table that seats eight in the center of the dining table with built in cabinetry seen in the kitchen walls and a built in china cabinet on either side wall of the dining room. The sitting room had a mismash of a black leather sofa with silver lining and two dark green straight-back chairs with silver lining. A glass tea table in the center and a large fireplace between the two picture windows across from the entrance. To their left was a hall with four doors, two on either side and another flight of stairs. All the walls were painted a stormy grey color with swirls of black, dark green and dark red throughout.
"Pick your bedroom and get settled in, according to the pictures of the place, the paint color remains the same in all the rooms and they're all equipped with sturdy oak four poster beds, desk, two book cases a bedside table and a wardrobe. I'll be upstairs, unpacking my stuff and then I have to contact the storage company that has the rest of my stuff." Elizabeth explained before heading for the next floor up and the master bedroom.
The walls up there were a dark blue with silver, white and bronze swirls throughout. The library turned out to have wall to wall shelving as well as three lines of back to back shelving in the center of the room, surprisingly filled with books. She browsed them briefly seeing they were mostly to do with Potions, Astrology, Herbology, creatures, Arithmancy and Runes.
"All subjects that lack the wand requirement." She murmured, wondering how her luck could be this good.
She walked into the master suite to find a king sized four poster with dark blue curtains, a dresser, wardrobe, bedside tables at either side, a smaller fireplace near the door and a bathroom with a sunken tub capable of fitting three, a sizable shower stall, two person sinks, a laundry hamper and the toilet. She shrugged and began to unpack her rucksack of clothes, toiletries, the deed and money and a couple fiction books she had on hand. Putting it all away, she headed back downstairs to find one of the doors open. Looking in, she watched as Harry sat on the bed, Hedwig perched on his shoulder and his trunk still unpacks.
"Unpack your school uniforms, as they are decent enough to wear. Same with all your school books and supplies. This is your home for however long you wish it. Those rags you were wearing before and any other similar clothing is to be tossed. We'll be shopping for new clothes after I contact the movers." She informed him.
Harry looked up, startled but nodded slowly and began unpacking. When he finished, he found Elizabeth sitting on the sofa, frowning at the high-back chairs. He snickered, figuring she disliked them as much as he did, causing her to turn to him.
"Those damnable chairs are going to go, plain and simple. Now I already dipped outside and used the payphone down the street the movers will be placing all my boxes in the shop downstairs and then lock up after themselves. We are going shopping. If you insist on paying for your clothes, as I fear you will, then you may pay me back at a later date. I do not feel like dealing with goblins again and you have no muggle money."
She then stood and headed down the stairs, Harry quickly following after her. The walked the half mile or so to the Westfield Shopping center she recalled passing on the way to The Leaky Cauldron and headed for the nearest clothing store.
"Find a pair of jeans, doesn't matter whether you like the looks or not and grab multiple sizes as I doubt you'd know you size, considering your previous clothing."
Harry blushed but did as told, and once he figure out his size, Elizabeth told him to pick out a total of 9 pairs of Jeans and t-shirts, and 7 long sleeved shirts. She reminded him not to forget 2 packs of clean socks and underthings, then went looking through for a few new pairs of socks for herself. They took a surprisingly short time of only ten minutes for Harry to choose everything.
"Oh thank heavens you can pick your stuff out so fast. I never did understand why so many people take an hour just to find and purchase a single pair of pants." Elizabeth said in relief as she went to pay with a credit card.
When they finished, they took the clothes and Harry ran to fetch a trolley that they didn't think to grab before. Using it to push their purchases, they headed in search of a shoe store, where Elizabeth had him find two pairs of trainers, one pair of dress shoes, a pair of rain boots and a pair of winter boots. After that, their next stop was the eye doctor, where they thankfully accepted walk-ins. They had to wait nearly half an hour for Harry to be seen, after having to explain and then call up the Dursley's for Harry's medical information. They quickly and happily gave it and agreed to show up with guardianship transfer papers they had on hand but never used. Petunia Dursley, did indeed show up while Harry was being seen to by the doctor and Elizabeth was not the only one disgusted by Petunia's happy attitude of finally getting rid of the 'freak', as she put it. The others in the office were more than happy to sign as witnesses and the moment Petunia dursley left the nurses all converged, demanding Elizabeth get him seen by a doctor immediately for the full works. He was too short for a twelve year old boy (and didn't that surprise Elizabeth, as she never asked his age and merely assumed he was a nine year old), he was too skinny and they'd noticed his flinching. Lastly, they informed her the glasses he was wearing were not prescription, but everyday reading glasses. It's a miracle he could see at all was the general consensus once they saw what his prescription it was supposed to be.
By the time the glasses were finished, the doctor himself had gotten on the phone and contacted his colleagues at a nearby hospital and child services. He assure Elizabeth that the child services department understood she was taking him away from his previous family, and as long as she proved she can take care of him, they would stand by the transfer papers. They were mostly needed for approval of an entire work up of tests, x-rays and an MRI to be done to see just how much damage had been done to Harry.
They waited in the waiting room until someone from Child Services came and gave them a lift, first going back to the flat to show off the space and so Elizabeth could get her bank statement she got when she collected the money to purchase it, showing she could afford to take care of him. They dropped off their shopping and were off for the hospital, where the tests were done and they were informed they would hear back at a later time.
By the time they were finished, it was evening again so Elizabeth headed to the Cauldron to grab food to go and they ate supper before heading to bed, once more completely exhausted by the days events. Elizabeth knew it would only continue for the next few weeks as she got Harry settled, started his homeschooling in both magical theory and muggle schooling and they went through his finances, his vaults and the mail. All the while, she'd be staying up late to set up the store downstairs and carefully make common potions with decent shelf life for her to sell in the back room after putting an ad in the wizarding newspaper.
She knew this would be a tiring experience, with lots of legal mumbo-jumbo and learning her way through magic alongside Harry while trying to teach him. It would be frustrating too. But when she spotted Harry asleep over top the covers, both shoes and glasses still on his face, she smiled, removed his shoes and glasses before tucking him in, kissed his forehead and mentally accepted the challenge before heading for her own bed. What comes, will come and she'd face it head on.