What if the Sorting Hat had gone against Harry's wishes and put him in a different house? What if it made him stronger? What if it made him tougher? What if it made him darker? My take on the whole Harry-is-a-freaking-Slytherin story!
Rubbing his saw hand, Harry could hardly believe his eyes. This was it. This was were he belonged. This was were he could be free to do what he liked. They started down the street towards a great marble building.
"Yuh'll be needin' one o' them." Said Hagrid as they passed a shop selling cauldrons. "But we'll need ter get yuh money first."
Harry was about to ask what money, but remembered what the Dursleys always said, 'NEVER ASK QUESTIONS!' and quickly looked down at the ground. Hagrid seemed to notice this.
"Didn't think yuh mum and dad left yuh with nothing, did yuh? Yuh money's in there," He pointed to the giant, white marble building. "Gringotts. The wizard bank. Aint no place safer, 'cept maybe 'Ogwarts. Yuh'd be mad ter try an' rob it."
They marched up the gleaming marble steps and up to the huge building, passing two, strange, wrinkly little creatures in scarlet and gold uniforms, their long, spindly fingers wrapped around spear-like weapons as they strolled through a pair of bronze doors.
"Goblins, Harry. Not the nicest o' folk, but, clever little blighters, the lot o' 'em."
Now they were facing a second pair of doors, silver this time, with words engraved upon them:
Enter, stranger, but take heed
Of what awaits the sin of greed,
For those who take, but do not earn,
Must pay most dearly in their turn,
So if you seek beneath our floors,
A treasure that was never yours,
Thief, you have been warned, beware
Of finding more than treasure there.
"Like I said, yuh'd be mad ter try an' rob it."
Another pair of goblins bowed them through the silver doors into a vast marble hall. About a hundred more goblins were sitting on high stools behind a long counter, scribbling in large ledgers, weighing coins on brass scales, examining precious stones through eyeglasses. There were too many doors to count leading off the hall, and yet more goblins were showing people in and out of these. Hagrid and Harry made for a free teller.
"Mornin'. We've come ter take some money outta Mr Harry Potter's safe," Hagrid said to the goblin.
"You have his key, sir?"
"Got it here somewhere," Hagrid began rummaging through his many pockets, scattering handfuls of meaningless knickknacks onto the counter until he finally found what he was looking for. The goblin wrinkled his nose and Harry began to think why the key to his vault was trusted with a bumbling oaf. Of course, Hagrid was a nice bumbling oaf, but a careless one nevertheless. Hagrid place the key on the counter.
The goblin looked at it closely, before nodding. "That seems to be in order."
"An' I've got a letter from Professor Dumbledore," Hagrid said importantly, throwing out his chest before lowering his voice and scanning his eyes around the hall. "It's about the You-Know-What in vault seven hundred and thirteen."
The goblin read the letter carefully before handing it back to Hagrid. "Very well, I will have someone escort you down to both vaults. Griphook!"
The goblin scurried over to them, saying something in a language Harry didn't understand to the first goblin before motioning for them to follow him.
They were led over to one of the many doors and down a wooden corridor to a small mine cart. Harry looked at it quizzically before getting in. The cart sped off and Harry almost shouted out with joy. This was like the rollercoaster's Dudley used to ride.
'No,' Harry thought to himself. 'I mustn't think about the Dursleys. They are no good to me. They have done nothing good for me. Ever. I am starting a new life, Dursley free.'
The cart came to a sudden halt and Hagrid stumbled out, immediately leaning against the wall, looking very green to stop his knees trembling.
Griphook unlocked the door and a lot of green smoke emitted from the vault. The smoke cleared and Harry gasped as he saw how much he saw. There were piles and piles of gold galleons, silver sickles and bronze knuts.
"All yours," Hagrid smiled.
Harry gulped and stepped into the vault, taking the money pouch offered by Griphook and began to stuff as much into the small pouch as he could. Which, it turned out, was quiet a lot. It seemed it had been charmed to hold around a hundred galleons. Harry also stuffed his pockets, just in case.
Harry stepped out of the vault and nodded to Hagrid who sighed and climbed back in, muttering something about hating 'these bloomin carts.'
Once again, the cart shot off and once again, it stopped outside a vault. Hagrid and Harry got out of the cart and Griphook stroked his finger down the door. The door began to melt away and Griphook turned to Harry.
"If any one other than a Gringotts goblin tried that, they'd be sucked in through the door and trapped inside." He grinned.
Harry couldn't help himself. "How often do you check the vaults?"
Griphook's grin turned into a smirk. "Oh, about once every ten years."
Harry chuckled and peered inside the vault, expecting to see mountains of precious minerals and stones from such a high security vault. But the only thing he noticed was a small grubby looking packaged about the size of Harry's clenched fist. Hagrid picked it up and tucked it deep inside one of the millions of pockets in his coat. Harry longed to know, but knew better than to ask.
One wild cart-ride later they stood blinking in the sunlight outside Gringotts. Harry wanted to run to every store there was and buy the place out, but it would make him look like an outsider and he desperately wanted to prove himself to world that though him second only to God also known as one Albus Dumbledore.
"Might as well get yuh uniform," said Hagrid, nodding towards Madam Malkin's Robes for All Occasions. "Would yuh mind if I slipped off fer a pick-me-up in the Leaky Cauldron? I hate 'em Gringotts cars."
Harry nodded as he entered the shop, trying to quell the feeling of nervousness he had without his guide.
"Hogwarts, dear?" Asked a woman as Harry walked up to the counter she was rushing around behind. "Got the lot here – another young man is being fitted over there. Can you go stand over on the footstool next to him?"
In the back of the shop, a boy with a pale, pointed face stood on a footstool while a second witch pinned up his long black robes. Harry stood on the one next to him and Madam Malkin threw some black robes over him after taking measurements and began cutting it down to size.
"Hullo," Said the boy. "Hogwarts too?" Harry nodded. "My father's next door buying my books and my mother's up the street looking at wands. Then I'm going to drag them off and look at racing brooms. I don't see why First Years cant have their own. I think I'll bully my father into getting me one and I'll smuggle it in somehow." He drawled.
Harry was strongly reminded of Dudley, but didn't judge the boy too much. He might have a really nice personality. Might.
"Have you got your own broom?" The boy went on.
"Play Quidditch at all?"
"No," Said Harry again, getting a bit annoyed at not knowing what on earth Quidditch was.
"I do. Father says it's a crime if I'm not picked to play for my house, and I must say, I agree." The boy looked at Harry for a moment before asking, "Know what house your going to be in?"
"No," Said Harry, feeling stupider by the minute.
"Well, no one really knows, do they? But I know I'll be in Slytherin, all out family have been in there – imagine being in Hufflepuff! I think I'd leave, wouldn't you?"
"What's wrong with Hufflepuff?" asked Harry, his feelings getting the better of him. The boy almost burst out laughing if it wasn't for the serious expression on Harry's face.
"Are you serious? Bunch of duffers, the lot of them." He looked at Harry questioningly. "Your parents, they are one of us aren't they?"
"If you mean among the living, then no. If you mean magical, then yes."
"Oh, sorry." There was silence until, "I say, look at that man!" nodding towards the window, Harry saw Hagrid grinning madly and holding two large ice creams.
"That's Hagrid. He works at Hogwarts." Harry said, pleased to know something the boy didn't.
"I've heard of him. He's a sort of savage isn't he?"
"He's the gamekeeper and he's with me."
There was another uncomfortable silence until, "What's your Surname?"
Before Harry could answer, Madam Malkin told Harry that he was done and to pay at the desk.
"I'll see you at Hogwarts, I suppose."
The young wizard and the gamekeeper sat on a wall as they eat their ice creams before heading off to start with their shopping.
They began with a store called Flourish and Blotts as it was the closest store to them where Harry bought his school books and a few other books, including a recent history book and one called Curses and Counter-Curses (Bewitch your Friends and Befuddle your Enemies with the Latest Revenges: Hair Loss, Jelly Legs, Tongue Tying and much, much more) by Professor Vindictus Viridian.
Next was Potions ingredients. There were many weird and wonderful things in the Apothecary; Unicorn hair, Arcomantula venom, Monkshood, Griffin feathers, crushed ash winder scales and many more. Harry bought a basic potions pack and a pewter cauldron (although was tempted to buy a solid gold one, but thought better of it (the Dursleys might have tried to steal it and sell it)) as well as a pair of brass scales and some crystal phials. The next thing was a telescope, which he quickly bought and moved onto a wand.
He walked into Ollivanders, Makers of Fine Wands since 381 BC and rang the bell on the counter as Hagrid sat down on a spindly chair in the corner.
Harry felt strangely as though he had entered a very strict library; he swallowed a lot of questions which had occurred to him and looked instead at the thousands of narrow boxes piled neatly right up to the ceiling. For some reason, the back of his next prickled. The very dust and silence in here seemed to tingle with some secret magic.
"Good afternoon," said a soft, eerie voice from behind him. Harry almost jumped with fright, and suspected Hagrid did because of a loud crunching noise.
"Hello, I'm here for a wand," Said Harry awkwardly. The man nodded.
"I was wondering when you'd show up, Mr Potter." It would be stupid to say, 'How did you know my name?' because he was famous and people were bound to have seen him before. "You have your mother's eyes. It seems only yesterday she was in here herself. Ten and a quarter inches long, willow, unicorn hair, nice for charm work."
Mr Ollivander moved closer to Harry, inspecting him, silently judging him.
"Your father, on the other hand, favoured a mahogany wand. Eleven inches and Dragons Heartstring. Pliable. A little more power and excellent for transfiguration. I must say, your father favoured it. It is, of course, the wand that chooses the wizard."
Ollivander had come so close to Harry, that they were now almost nose to nose. Harry could see himself reflected into his misty eye.
"And that's where…" Ollivander touched the lightening scar on Harry's forehead with a spindly white finger.
"I'm remorseful to say that I sold the wand that did it. Thirteen and a half inches, yew. Powerful, very powerful, and in the wrong hands…" he shook his head and then spotted Hagrid standing awkwardly in the corner. "Rubeus! How nice to see you! Oak, sixteen inches, rather bendy, wasn't it?
"It was, sir, yes," said Hagrid.
"And then you got yourself expelled. I suppose they snapped in half," and without waiting for an answer, he continued. "But anyway, that isn't why we're here, is it. Now, which is your wand arm?"
As he asked this, a tape measure jumped into action and began taking measurements of all sorts of crazy angles, like in between his nostrils and from his left eye to his right elbow, or from his right ear to his left pinkie finger.
"Well, sir, I'm ambidextrous," said Harry, knocking away the tape measure.
Ollivander raised an eyebrow. "An interesting feat, Mr Potter. Lets see. Ah! Hold out the arm you write with most or catch something with. Ah, your left arm. Well, you will be able to use both hands, but I suggest you use this one most often. Now, try this and give it a wave." He trust a wand into his hand as Harry threw off the tape measure.
Harry waved it before it was immediately taken from him and replaced with another. This went on for a while, with Harry breaking a plant pot, making a four wands shoot out of their boxes and even making the broken remains of Hagrid chair smash into the wall until it was into small pieces. With every wrong wand making Ollivander happier. The wands piled up, until they finally found the wand for him.
Rosewood and Phoenix Feather, thirteen inches, swishy and supple. As soon as Harry touched it, the wand sent out green and silver sparks like fireworks. Hagrid whooped and clapped while Ollivander cried, "Bravo! Yes, indeed, oh, very good. Well, well, well… how curious… how very curious…"
He put Harry's wand back into its box and wrapped it up in brown paper, still murmuring 'Curious.' Ollivander looked at Harry's inquiring expression and answered the unasked question.
"I remember every wand I've ever sold, Mr Potter. it just so happens that the Phoenix whose tail feather that resides in your wand, gave another feather – just one other. It is very curious indeed that you should be destined for this wand, when its brother, gave you that scar."
Harry's hand reached up for the scar donning his forehead.
"Curious how these things happen. The wand chooses the wizard, remember… I think we must expect great things from you, Mr Potter… after all, He Who Must Not Be Named did great things. Terrible. But great."
Once Harry paid for the wand, he was feeling very nervous. These people expected great things from him, but he didn't know the first thing about magic. They left the shop, and Hagrid suddenly burst out.
"Blimey, I forgot, I still aint got yuh a birthday present."
Harry went a bit red. "You don't have to, Hagrid, I don't need one."
"I know I don't 'ave to. Tell yuh what, I'll get yuh an owl. All the kids want owls, dead useful, carry yuh post an' everythin'."
They entered Eeylops Owl Emporium, which was dark and full of rustling and flickering, jewel-bright eyes. Harry was torn between a beautiful snowy owl and a stunning, pure black hawk owl. In the end, Harry exited the store with the Hawk Owl he had named Kiara. He couldn't stop stammering his thanks, sounding just like Professor Quirrell.
"Don' mention it," Hagrid said gruffly. "Not everyday yuh find a female Hawk Owl in such a starlin' colour. An' I don' expect yuh've had a lotta presents from the Dursleys."
Hagrid and Harry sat down in the Leaky Cauldron after ordering some food. Hagrid smiled at Harry.
"I got some good news fer yuh, 'Arry. I sent a letter ter Professor Dumbledore 'bout keeping yuh here for the rest of the summer, and he said yes. So, I've set up a room for yuh and yuh gonna get the Knight Bus to Kings Cross on the 1st. Grea' news, eh?"
"Thanks, Hagrid." Harry said as he eat his hamburger, trying not to think about what people expected him to do.
Hagrid seemed to notice this. "Yuh all right, Harry? Yuh very quiet."
He wasn't sure how to explain it. "All those people before, they all think I'm special. That I'm going to be a great wizard. That I'm special. But I don't know the first thing about magic. I'm famous and I cant even remember what for."
Hagrid leaned across the table, smiling behind his wild beard and eyebrows.
"Don' you worry, Harry. Yuh'll learn fast enough. Just be yuhself. I know its hard. Yuh've been singled out, an' that's always 'ard. But yuh'll have a great time at 'Ogwarts. I did. Still do 'smatter of fact. Now, 'ere's yuh ticket. First o' September – King's Cross – its all on yuh ticket. Tom's arranged fer the Knight Bus to take yuh there. See yuh soon, Harry."
Hagrid smiled once more and exited the Leaky Cauldron.
The man behind the bar wandered over to him. "'Ello, Mr Potter. Your in room Eleven. I hope you have a pleasant stay."
To say the rest of the holidays were enjoyable would an understatement. Harry spent the days searching Diagon Ally for things weird and wonderful. He bought a whole load more books and spent the nights reading his school books and at least two days just reading everything else.
On this particular day, Harry was marching off to Knockturn Ally, as it was the only part he hadn't yet explored, and a strange old man had given him a note to go to a shop called Borgin and Burkes.
Harry was searching the rows of books in Flourish and Blotts, trying to find something to keep his thirst for knowledge at bay. So far he had already bought all the school books for second and third years, and had already read them at least once. Up to now, he'd only found a few books which took his liking that wasn't school curriculum, but he'd already bought them and read them. But right now, he was keeping an eye on an elderly gentleman who kept looking at him with interest.
Harry left the shop and started down the Ally, back up to the Leaky Cauldron, thinking he could re-read the books he had already, when the old man walked up to him and grabbed his hand with a strong grip, pushing a piece of paper inside of it.
"You've got a thirst for knowledge which Flourish and Blotts cannot quell. Things you could never imagine are waiting here." And before Harry could ask, the man was gone with a wicked laugh and a crack.
-End of Flashback-
So here he was, throwing his cloak around himself and pulling down the hood before marching boldly into Knockturn Ally, the apparent Black Market. It was dark, dank and the tall building cut off the sound of Diagon Ally. Everything seemed to be jammed together as if to save space. No one was standing around; everybody was walking with determination, paying no attention to others. 'Well, this seems just a place I would like' stern faced Harry thought as he too took a self-assured expression on his face and lifted his chin up.
'These guys are idiots. Having a Black Market in plain sight. Idiots.' Harry thought as he daringly strode down the dark street.
He entered Borgin and Burkes, walked in and began looking around. There were piles of Dark Arts books and books about Rituals, assorted human bones, blood stained cards, glass eyes, long coils of a thing called the Hangman's Rope, sinister masks, a large opal necklace, shrunken heads and even two, shrivelled hands. One name the Hand of Glory, the other, the Hand of Demise. Underneath each Hand was a small plaque stating what each Hand did.
The Hand of Glory
A Hand that only obeys its master. The Thief's best friend. Will steal anything the master orders and when inserted with a candle, will give light to its master and its master's wishes.
The Hand of Demise
A Hand that only obeys its master. The Killers best friend. Will strangle anything the master orders and when inserted with a weapon, will destroy anything its master orders.
He slowly ran his forefinger over the withered palm of the hand and jumped back slightly as the hand tried to grasp him.
"What are you doing child?" said a icy voice from behind him.
"Looking," Harry said, his voice laced with power, trying to intimidate the man.
"Are you the kid Mr Guerra sent?" Harry guessed that this was the old man who gave him the note. "I guess you are. No kid would willingly walk down Knockturn Ally without self-gain. Well, here you are. And he said to give you this as well."
The man handed him a pile of books and a letter in an golden envelope. The man grabbed a bag from behind the counter and put the books into it before handing it back to Harry. Harry thanked the man and exited the store, only just getting back to the Leaky Cauldron as rain began to pour down onto the cobbled streets of Diagon and Knockturn Ally.
Once Harry was back in his room, he read the letter Mr Guerra sent him.
These books have all been checked for curses and paid for. There is no need to thank me, for I to have a thirst for knowledge that the books in Diagon cannot quell.
I hope these books were as good for you as they were me.
Harry quickly put the books into the furthest corner of the room. If he had learned one thing from the books he already had. It was do not trust anything, no matter how it looked. It could look like just a diary, but could turn out to be something full of surprises. He had planned to take them to Hogwarts to get them checked over first. After all, they most likely had wards to keep out items of Dark Magic (he knew about the wards from Hogwarts: A History).
The rest of the month went very quickly for Harry. He had spent it browsing the stores and at nights reading himself to sleep. The young wizard had even bought himself a wand holster and a trunk with five different compartments. One was a library, another a place to store his potions ingredients, a wardrobe, a place to keep knick-knacks and a bedroom and was keyed so only he could open it. It had cost him almost fifty galleons, which Harry figured out was quite a lot, but it was worth it, he didn't want the Dursleys ransacking it while he slept, but that was, if he went back to them.
But just when he had gotten into a daily rhythm, September 1st rolled around, and he had to leave for school.
Harry had taken the Knight Bus to King's Cross Station, and after strict instructions from a spotty teen who had obviously just graduated from Hogwarts, he was standing on the Hogwarts Express. He placed his luggage in the overhead storage and let Kiara out of her cage, where she immediately latched onto Harry's shoulder, scouting for danger. Every so often, she would nip his ear affectionately. Harry dragged out a book and began re-reading it again, and every so often he would flick his wrist and try to get his wand to his hand. Ollivander had said it would take practice to get it completely right so he kept practising. At exactly eleven o'clock, a sharp whistle and the train began to move.
A few minutes later, and a boy with starling red hair and freckles knocked on the door.
"Is it all right if I sit here?" he asked, nodding to the seat opposite him. "Everywhere else is full."
"Be my guest," Harry replied, moving his tattered school bag he had gotten from the Dursleys.
The boy glanced out of the window and the train ride began in silence, until Harry flicked his head to remove the hair from his eyes and the boy caught a glimpse of Harry's scar. Harry mentally slapped himself for his stupidity. He hated all this attention.
"Are you Harry Potter?" the boy blurted out.
Harry sighed and nodded.
"I'm Ron Weasley." He out stretched his hand and Harry shook it.
"Nice to meet you."
"Yeah… so do you really have the scar?"
"Can I see it?"
Harry stared. "Do you really want to? Or do you think I'm not the real thing?"
Ron gulped. "Sorry, it's just, it's supposed to be in the shape of lightening. I just wanted to know…"
Harry sighed and pulled back his fringe. Ron stared. "So that's where You-Know-Who - ?"
"Yeah, but I cant remember anything but some green and laughter. And I don't really want to talk about it. There were other people in that war, you know. Not just me and Voldemort."
Ron flinched and gasped.
"You said You-Know-Who's name!" he said, sounding both shocked and impressed. "I'd have though you, of all people -"
"It's just a name. It's not as if he's going to appear when you say it. He just wants you to be afraid."
"Your saying that as if he's still here!"
"Well he is."
This got the boy completely shocked, Harry had to bite his tongue to not laugh.
"You know, this is just like back in old muggle times, when people thought that the Devil, Lucifer, would jump out and get you if you said his name. Look, nothing bad is gonna happen. Voldemort, Voldemort, Voldemort."
Just at that moment, the blond boy he met in Diagon Ally opened the door with two cronies. "Is it true? They're saying Harry Potter's in this compartment. I guess it you."
"What's it to you?" Harry asked, eyeing the two other boys, both of them looking completely dim-witted. Standing on either side of the pale boy, they looked like his bodyguards.
"Oh, this is Crabbe and this is Goyle," Said the boy carelessly. "And I'm Malfoy. Draco Malfoy."
Ron gave a slight cough, while Harry just burst out laughing.
Draco glared at him. "Think my name's funny do you?"
Harry just kept laughing. "A Dragon With Foul Breath." He said, cryptically.
Draco looked at him. "What?"
"Your name. It means 'A Dragon with Foul Breath.' I bet you didn't know that."
Draco growled. "You'll soon find out that some wizarding families are better than others, Potter. You don't want to go making friends with the wrong sort, or make enemies with the right. I can help you there."
He offered his hand to Harry, who just stared Draco in his steel eyes.
"And if you ever need tips on a good hair-do, I cant, but I know a stylist who can."
A pink tinge appeared in his pale cheeks. "I'd be careful if I were you, Potter," he said slowly. "Unless you a bit politer, you'll go the same way as your parents. They didn't know what was good for them, either. You hang around with riff-raff like the Weasleys and that Hagrid and it'll rub off on you."
Ron stood up, but Harry just stayed seated and in a answered cold, intimidating tone. "Insult me, my friends or my parents again, and you'll live to regret it."
"Is that a threat?" asked Draco, trying to put on his own intimidating voice, but failing miserably.
"Are you that unintelligent that you cant understand a threat when you hear one? Or is it that in breeding with your own family to make sure of your purity of blood stays what it is, that you've developed a deformity that forbids you to realise even the simplest of insults."
Draco growled and backed out of the compartment, his two goons following closely.
Ron burst into laughter. "That was awesome Harry! I cant believe you said that to Malfoy!"
"Yeah. I don't know what came over me."
"Whatever it was I thank it! Anyway, have you ever met Malfoy before?"
"Once, in Diagon Ally. You?"
"Nope. But I'm glad I haven't. His entire family are into the Dark Arts. They were one of the first to come back to our side from You-Know-Who. That guys father was supposed to be one of his most loyal followers. Said they'd been bewitched. My dad doesn't believe it. He say's Malfoy's father didn't need an excuse to go over to the Dark Side."
There was another knock at the door and a girl with extremely bushy hair came in and a boy who looked on the verge of crying.
"Have either of you seen a toad. Neville's lost one." She said. She had a bossy voice, lots of bushy hair and rather large front teeth.
"Nope," said Ron.
"Ask an older student to do a summoning charm. That'll find it." Said Harry, flicking his hair once more out of his eyes and returning to his book. Again, he mentally slapped himself. He did it again.
"I know who you are!" she said proudly, her eyes switching from his scar, to the book he was reading, to his face and finally to his eyes.
"I do too!" Harry said sarcastically.
"Your Harry Potter."
"You, know, I guess I am!"
"I know all about you, of course – I got a few extra books for background reading, and you're in Modern Magical History and The Rise and Fall of the Dark Arts and Great Wizarding Events of the Twentieth Century."
"Am I really!" He asked, once again, sarcastically. But the girl obviously didn't get this.
"Didn't you know? I would have found out everything I could, if it was me."
"Yeah, well, I'm not vain." He muttered, earning a second cough/snigger from Ron.
"I'm Hermione Granger, by the way. Nobody in my family's magic at all, it was such a surprise when I got my letter, but I was ever so pleased, of course, I mean, it's the very best school of witchcraft there is, I've heard – I've learnt all out set books off by heart, of course, I just hope it will be enough." She said all this very fast and without pausing. "Do either of you know what house you'll be in? I've been asking around and I hope I'll be in Gryffindor, it sounds the best by far. I've heard Albus Dumbledore was one, but I suppose Ravenclaw wouldn't be too bad… anyway, we'd better go look for Neville's toad. You two had better change, you know, I expect we'll be there soon."
And she left, taking the toadless boy with her.
"Whatever house I'm in, I hope she's not in it," Said Ron. "Hey, wanna see a spell?"
"I got it off Fred and George. Anyway," he stood up, rummaged around in his trunk and brought out a tattered wand, with something white sticking from it. "Ahhah! Ok," he brought a small, sleeping rat out from his pocket and put it on the seat. "This is Scabbers, by the way. Anyway,
"Sunshine, daisies, butter mellow,
Turn this stupid, fat rat yellow."
The spell had no effect on the rat and it just stayed asleep.
"What was the spell meant to do?" asked Harry after a while.
"Turn him yellow. But I bet it was a dud."
The rest of the train ride went like this, until an elderly witch with a trolley came past and Harry bought two of everything and shared it with Ron. He never had a proper friend before, and it was seemed Ron didn't have much money.
The train finally came to a stop, just as Harry and Ron had finished getting their robes on. They took down their trunks and stepped onto the platform. Kiara flew off and Harry had no doubt he would see her again soon.
Hagrid came along and told them to leave their trunks on the platform and for the first years to follow him. They all piled into a boat, 'Four in one,' shouted Hagrid and then another command and a thrust of his pink umbrella and the boats were away. Harry was sharing a boat with Ron, Neville and Hermione.
As they came round a corner, there was a lot of 'ooh's and 'ahh's as Hogwarts came into sight. Harry was certainly impressed, but didn't make a sound, like the rest of them. The boats finally stopped and they climbed some slippery stairs to a small chamber, obviously leading off to somewhere else. A stern looking woman called Professor McGonagall met them and began talking about the different houses, the House Cup, house points, house pride and to smarten up before the sorting. She walked through the doors and most of the student did smarten themselves up, but Harry wasn't so vain and he knew he was already as smart as he would be.
McGonagall returned a few moments later and guided them into the Great Hall. Harry could hear Hermione go on about how the ceiling was enchanted to look like the night sky and Ron telling another boy how his brother's told him that you had to fight a troll.
"Ron, that's complete nonsense. First of all, we are untrained eleven year olds and second, the school wouldn't allow the safety of it's students to be harmed even before they had their first lesson."
Ron went red. "Oh, yeah, right. I'm gonna kill Fred and George."
They were led up to a tattered hat on top of a stool in front of the Head table, and a tear on the brim opened up and…
The hat began to sing.
After the song, the entire hall burst into applause. It bowed to each of the four tables and then became still again. McGonagall stepped up and brought out a large scroll.
"When I call your name, you will put on he hat and sit on the stool to be sorted," She stated before calling out the first name. A Hannah Abbottt was sorted into Hufflepuff.
Susan Bones was also sorted into Hufflepuff and the rest of the sorting went like this. Ravenclaw, Ravenclaw, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, then Hermione Granger got sorted into Gryffindor, then Gryffindor again, Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, Slytherin, Slytherin, Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff. Harry tried to memorise names to faces, to houses and was caught off guard when his name was called out.
"Hmm," said a small voice in his ear."Difficult, very difficult. Plenty of courage, I see. Sharp to. There's talent, oh my goodness, yes – and a nice thirst to prove yourself, now that's interesting…So where shall I put you? Hmm, you're cunning. And I see you can be quite ruthless at times. Gryffindor would slow down your potential to become immense. Oh, you do have potential. Great potential, very great. And there's only one place that will help you on the way. Yes, better be SLYTHERIN!"
Everyone was shell-shocked. A Potter had never been in Slytherin! Plus, this was Harry Potter! The boy who vanquished the Dark Lord, is in the Dark house of Salazar Slytherin. The Slytherins were just as shocked, but slowly started clapping.
The food came just as the sea of heads bobbing up and down, trying to see the Boy Who Lived put into the house of Dark Wizards, became unbearable. It was if he were some living sculpture at an art museum who had just won its owner loads of money. It was so bloody annoying!
Harry forced himself to not concentrate on the crowd and focus on his meal. He wasn't feeling hungry at all, especially with all those eyes following every move he made. Heck, even the professors were gawking at him. Some with betrayed looks on their faces. Others with complete shock and disbelief. But only two had looks of contemplating. One of those were professor Snape, the Potions Master. Harry didn't know how he knew this, but it was if he could see inside the Potions Master's mind and pick up simple things like the name 'Severus Snape'.
The other, was Headmaster Albus Dumbledore. Harry, again, somehow knew he would have to watch his back around Dumbledore.
Harry went back to his food, finally hearing the tell-tale chatter of students finally stopping looking at him. But he knew that they were talking about him. He could feel it. It was some unknown power coursing through his veins.
Harry looked across to Ron, who gave him a simphetic look and began greedily eating his food. 'Well, at least he's going to have a nice time' Harry thought.
The words the Sorting Hat said to him last echoed in his ears as he tried to drown out everything else to hear himself think. 'You will see the rightness of my choice when the time comes…'
/N: There, that's the first chapter complete, and for those that don't know, this is going to be very different to J.K.R's first book. Completely different. That was just the beginning.