Blind to it all
Chapter #3: Brother Wands
"I guess, then, that you don't want to hear that he's the reincarnation of Salazar Slytherin, do you?" Madam Malkin said with a smirk, knowing the reaction the poor Potions Master would have. Snape didn't disappoint; he could take it no longer, he buried his head in his hands and decided unashamedly that crying would help, and so he started to do just that. Harry started to get a little worried; he liked Snape, yet to see him like this, and it perplexed him somewhat. He decided to help the man out. He had listened as Snape summoned his Patronus earlier and decided to try it. Raising his hand and crying out: "Expecto Patronum!" He was surprised to feel a rush of magic leave his hand and form a shape. His MSP told him it was a stag. He told it to go fetch Dumbledore as he had finally managed to break Professor Snape. The stag just bowed its head and cantered off in search of the Headmaster.
Albus Dumbledore was back in his office, slowly navigating his way through the perilous mountains that made up the land of paperwork, faithful sherbet lemons by his side, when a majestic silver stag cantered into his office and Harry's distressed voice rang through his head.
"Sir, I think I broke Professor Snape. He's sitting in Madam Malkin's crying and I think it's my fault." The voice sounded so worried that for the second time that day, Dumbledore and his phoenix, Fawkes—or perhaps it would be better to say Fawkes and his pet Headmaster—once again left the office in a burst of flame in search of the odd couple.
Meanwhile, back in Madam Malkin's, Snape had just swallowed his second calming draught and Madam Malkin was comforting a distressed Harry when there was a burst of flame, and Fawkes and his Headmaster appeared.
"Severus, are you all right?" Dumbledore asked, spotting his emotionally battered Potions Master, and placing a gnarled hand on his shoulder.
"For a wise and powerful wizard, and Headmaster of a school, and the fact you're a century and a half old, you have an uncanny knack of asking the most asinine questions. No! I'm not bloody well, ok? I've been emotionally drained, shocked beyond belief, forced to rethink the opinion of my worst enemy's only son, and annoyed by meddling old fools who pass themselves off as Headmasters in the space of one day. If you'll excuse me, I'd like to go home and rest. I need to sort all of this out in my rather battered brain. Please, will you look after Harry for the rest of the day? I'm knackered and that's only after a few hours." Snape, having finished his rant, watched in stunned disbelief as Dumbledore did what he always did by chuckling and patting him on the head.
"Hmm. Yes, I see what you mean. I shall escort Harry around the Alley today and see he gets home. Do go home and rest Severus, you look like you could do with it," the venerable old Headmaster said, eyes twinkling madly. Snape not to be outdone, glared fiercely at the Headmaster, but as he should have realised, Dumbledore just waved him off in the direction of Madam Malkin's fireplace.
Harry, while all this was going on, felt something land on his small shoulder. He reached up to try and work out what had landed there when he felt the softest plumage he'd ever felt. Warmth spread through him as he patted the magnificent creature atop his shoulder.
"+You know, that does feel rather nice. Thank you young one. +" Harry jumped but, the phoenix didn't seem in the least bit perturbed.
"+You can speak+" asked Harry in amazement.
"+Indeed I can. And so, it would appear, can you. +" Fawkes chuckled.
"+But but but, how can a bird speak English+" Harry asked curiously.
"+English? Bah! I'll have you know beast speech is much more expressive than English, you dolt! English indeed. I ought to peck your eyes out for that; however, seeing as yours are currently out of order, I'll just have to resort to sarcastic retorts. +" Fawkes trilled indignantly.
"+So sorry. Far be it for me to not actually realise I was using beast speech. Forgive me, oh fiery phoenix. Forgive this mere mortal his insignificant mental capabilities. I shall endeavour to raise myself to your level in the future. +" Harry said with a level of sarcasm he didn't know he possessed.
"+I like you, child. You have your mother's temper. For that alone, I'm going to help you. A phoenix has chosen you. Knowing who you once were, and who you are now, she has decided to bond with you. Please, for Pete's sake, don't use her as a post owl unless you need an absolutely secure way of transporting your mail. Or, of course, no owl decides to become yours. +" Harry was floored; a phoenix was willing to bond with him? He turned to find Dumbledore looking at him with twinkling blue eyes.
"It would appear, Harry, that Fawkes has decided he likes you. Now, as much as I'd like to watch the two of you interact and trade insults, we must away to collect your wand and familiar."
The two wizards and one self-satisfied phoenix left Madam Malkin's and ambled in the direction of Olivander's. Upon entering the shop, Harry felt a tug on his magic. His MSP was whispering for him to about-face. After turning around, he found he could feel a great concentration of magic directly in front of him.
"Mr. Olivander, I presume?" Harry smirked.
"How is it, Albus, that a totally blind boy is able to tell I am behind him and about to sneak up on him, and catch me out before I get to do either one?" a mysterious voice asked.
"I'm sorry, sir, I'm getting used to my MSP." Harry said sheepishly.
"MSP? But-but-but, that's advanced goblin magic! Who taught you this technique, child?" Olivander asked excitedly.
"Director Ragnok, sir."
"Well now. That is interesting. Now, for your wand. Normally I'd give a long-winded speech on the properties of wands and whatnot, but, today, I'd like to try something different. Extend your magic if you would? Your wands, if you are able to be bonded to more than one will come to you." Olivander instructed.
Harry concentrated and felt a pull from the direction of the back of the store. Allowing his magic to follow it, he was surprised when two boxes came floating out of the back of the shop, and set themselves gently down in front of him.
"Go on then, lad, give them a wave." Harry picked the box on his left and waved the wand. A jet of green and silver sparks came out. Olivander gaped. He knew who owned that wand previously, and for it to choose another meant only one thing.
"Salazar Slytherin." Olivander whispered.
"Look after that wand, boy; its previous owner was a powerful wizard, and that wand, well, let's just say it's a masterpiece. Willow, and powdered basilisk fang, ten and a half inches, with emerald for the focus stone."
"I thought focus stones weren't used in wands because it made them more temperamental?" Dumbledore asked looking slightly puzzled.
"Indeed. But it's more that the wands became very picky and hard to bond with a wizard rather than temperamental." Olivander stated candidly. "Well, let's see the other wand, then."
Harry waved the wand from the box to his right and a jet of scarlet and gold sparks shot out the end.
"Oh, my! The brother wand of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named!" Olivander exclaimed.
"Come now, Octavius, fear of the name..."
"Yes, yes, I know all that rot. Now, this wand you have in your right hand is Holly, with Phoenix tail feather as the core. However, the phoenix that gave that feather, gave only one other. I'm sorry to say that it was that wand which gave you the scar upon your forehead and robbed you of your sight." Olivander said solemnly.
After paying for the wands, and a couple of Wand holsters, Dumbledore and Harry left the shop. The pair made their way to Magical menagerie, where a scarlet-and-gold-plumed phoenix sat on a perch outside the main door. Upon seeing Harry, the phoenix let out a burst of song, and looked deep into Harry's eyes. A bright beam of magic connected the two, and then Harry heard a female voice in his head.
"+Hello, child, I am Artemis.+"
"+Are you my familiar? The one the other phoenix spoke of+" Harry asked.
"+Yes, child, I am. The other phoenix is called Fawkes. He is Professor Dumbledore's familiar.+" Artemis perched herself on Harry's shoulder.
"What the devil..." The witch behind the counter had seen the exchange between boy and phoenix, and had come out to see why the avian had decided to perch itself on the child.
"Hello, ma'am. This is Artemis; she's my new familiar." Harry said smiling brightly, emerald eyes twinkling like his companion's blue ones.
"But-but-but Professor Dumbledore, is this true?" the now flustered witch asked.
"Indeed it is. They are now bonded." Dumbledore chuckled.
"Well, son, it would appear as if you've been..." she trailed off, just having noticed the scar above his right eye.
"Merlin's beard! Child, you'll not be spending your money here! Consider the phoenix yours as she seems to have chosen you. However, someone's bought you this lovely owl, which I will go fetch for you now. Oh my! Harry Potter! As I live and breathe!" the excited witch trotted off in search of Harry's pre-ordered owl. She came back several minutes later with a beautiful snowy-white owl in a travelling cage.
"Now, dear, don't forget to thank Hagrid when you get to Hogwarts. He wanted to give you a special present for your eleventh birthday." The witch gushed.
After several more stops to acquire potions ingredients, school books, and several other items that caught Harry's interest, as well as a new trunk and various other supplies, Artemis and Fawkes transported both wizards back to Privet Drive, where Harry excitedly told his aunt about the day he'd had.
There we go, chapter #3.
Sorry it took a while, but I had me a mental block.
Now we have Hedwig in the story. Let's wait and see how the owl and the phoenix interact.
There'll be more Snape soon enough, and good, wholesome Weasley action in the next few chapters.
Thanks to all who've reviewed, I really do appreciate it.
And last, but by no means least, I thank cckeimig for betaing the fic.
Don't forget to R&R!