Update: Hello everyone! I'm currently reworking the Zoo! It was started waaaay back in the day before I'd seen the fifth movie or read any book past the fourth. Voldy was back and Horcruxes hadn't even been mentioned. I've worked through to The Window over the course of four years and more without really changing the Zoo at all. I've learned a lot as a Potter fan and as a writer, and it's time the Zoo got the upgrade it deserves as one of the only stories I've ever "finished" though it is part of a trilogy. If a chapter has an "Update" announcement then it's been updated. I don't plan to edit plot or anything, just word choice and a few details here and there, hopefully making it a decent read OR reread.
George Weasley winced as he rolled onto his side; he could remember having a terrible dream, shadowy figures and a pain in his chest. He sat up slowly and looked around, squinting as his eyes adjusted, "Fred? Hey, Fred! Where are you?"
George stood and dusted himself off, finding himself in his pajamas and socks; he was outside, or in some sort of cave, and it was freezing. Shivering, he continued to call for his brother; "George!" a voice called through the haze
George spun around and ran to his brother who lay in the snow, blood long since dry mapped an ugly pattern down his face, "Fred what happened to you?!"
"Bloody bastards came in and hit me!" Fred muttered, "I saw them carrying you out, George and I tried to hex them but they hit me with something and I'm afraid I dropped my wand."
George couldn't help but laugh slightly as he inspected the wound on his brother's forehead, "I don't have mine on me either. They got you good."
"Where are we?" Fred asked, standing up and wrapping his arms around himself, "Its bloody freezing!"
"We're in a cave, but other than that I don't know. We should find someone to ask." George said, scanning the white world for a sign of life. He squinted and pointed, "Look there's a group of people there." He nudged Fred and walked off in the direction he had pointed.
"Muggle people." Fred muttered as he followed, "I don't think they'll be much help," Fred trailed off as George stopped walking, "What is it? Why'd you stop?"
George looked at Fred for one long moment, looking lost, before pressing his hands to the large sheet of glass, completely transparent, that divided them from the group of people, "What is this?" George whispered, dropping his usually calm demeanor.
"It's glass, George." Fred replied, "Look."
George followed his brother's gaze to a sign that stood between the glass and the group of people at an angle, "Teenage Wizards?"
The twins looked at each other in confusion as the people outside the glass stared.
"RON!" Harry cried as he ran to his friend, "You're alright!"
"I wasn't outside when I fell asleep, Harry." Ron replied, "Were you?"
"No." Harry said tolerantly, looking around, "I definitely wasn't wearing robes."
Ron shrugged, "Well let's figure out where we are; that's the best way to figure out where we want to be."
Harry checked his pockets and looked up at Ron, "Do you have your wand on you?"
Ron dug through his pockets and shook his head, "No, I guess I lost it. Mum's going to kill me."
Harry smiled slightly, "Come on let's just find out where we are."
"It certainly feels warmer than I remember." Ron observed, "Look there's a bunch of Muggles! They can tell us where we are!"
Ron pulled his robes over his head and abandoned them, running across the large grass field towards the crowd; Harry let his eyes trace the path to the people and his mouth fell open, "RON STOP!"
Ron skidded to a stop just as he went over the strange sloping edge of the hill; he grabbed handfuls of the earth to stop himself from falling into the narrow thirty-foot chasm that opened up suddenly just before another piece of land and a short fence. Harry was at his side instantly, pulling him up, "I'm fine." Ron muttered, embarrassed; when they turned back to the group of Muggles on the other side of the chasm, they were all staring, "Can you tell us where we are?!" Ron called.
The Muggles stared at them dully, and a few teenage boys out in front sniggered, "Please!" Harry called over to the crowd politely.
"Can you tell us-" Harry started.
"Harry!" Ron said firmly, nudging his friend.
Harry adjusted his glasses, "What?!" he demanded.
Ron pointed across a sidewalk behind the Muggles, George and Fred stood pressed against a great wall of their glass encasement, false rock and snow making it look like a cave's mouth. Harry stared wide-eyed until the twins stumbled away from the glass and back into the invisibility of the cave, "That was Fred and George." Ron whispered, "They're trapped here just like we are. Where are we, Harry?"
Harry hesitated, "Come on… let's get back up the hill."
George frowned with concern as he looked at Fred, pressed against the glass and shivering violently as his lips turned blue, "We have to get somewhere warm."
"It's warm out there George." Fred muttered, staring out past the glass at the Muggles that stared back.
George wrapped his arm around his brother's shoulders and led him gently away from the glass, flinching at the pain in his frozen feet, "There has to be a way to get out of the snow."
Fred let out one shaky steamy breath before collapsing against his brother, "F-freezing." he whispered.
George grunted as he lifted his brother from the ground, "Its alright." he muttered, "We'll find somewhere."
George carried Fred with some difficulty through the snow until he saw a small crawlspace in the cave's stone wall; he set Fred down and crawled into the hole, pulling his brother after him. After George's eyes adjusted he saw a small pile of blankets at the far corner of what appeared to be a prison-like barred cell. He grabbed the blankets and shook them open, tossing one over Fred, "I'm alright now." Fred muttered almost silently as he pulled the blanket more around himself, "W-where are we now!"
George threw his own blanket over his brother and shook his head, "I don't know; I just saw the hole. It's some kind of cage, though."
"A warm cage," Fred muttered.
"George?" a quiet voice called from somewhere in the larger area of the room.
George blinked in the darkness and he saw his mother in another cell not far from theirs, "Mum?"
"Arthur! The boys are here!" Molly cried, and George's father came into view, sporting an ugly black eye.
"What happened to your eye Dad?" George asked, moving closer and pressing his face to the cold steel bars.
"He fought them; where's Fred?" Molly asked warily.
"He's with me." George assured, "He's fine Mum. What is this place?"
"To the best of my knowledge we're in a zoo." Arthur replied, "It's a place that Muggles keep animals so they can gawk at them."
"But why are we here then?" George asked desperately.
Arthur was quiet for a moment, "It seems like as far as they're concerned, Wizards and Witches are animals."
"I didn't think they knew we existed." George said.
"They didn't." Arthur answered, "I'm not sure what has happened, but the best thing to do for now is just stay inside."
George nodded in the darkness, "Alright… how long do you think we'll be here before someone comes for us?"
Arthur and Molly were both silent for some time, "Not long, dear." Molly assured, but it sounded terribly forced, "Not long at all."
A/N: Any feedback welcome! Thanks for reading!