Harry Potter & The Heir of Gryffindor
Chapter 2 - Diagon Alley
"Umm Professor, what are we…"
Ron stopped speaking when suddenly he felt a jerk behind his navel, like a hook had pulled him irresistibly forward and suddenly he was in motion. By reflex Ron tried to let go of the steering wheel he was holding but found his fingers almost magnetically stuck to it. Ron was speeding forwards in a howl of wind swirling colour, the swirling colour was replaced by a bright flash of blue for a few second before the swirling colours returned again, after a few more seconds Ron suddenly felt his feet hit the ground and the steering wheel fell from his grasp and rolled away, he stumbled and fell to the floor with a thump and tried to shake the cobwebs from his head.
"Mr Stoppable" a voice said with concern.
"Mr Stoppable are you ok?" the voice said again. Ron slowly turned over and looked up to see Professor McGonagall leaning over him.
"Uhh… what was that!" Ron groaned as he very slowly sat up.
"A Portkey" McGonagall answered as if it was obvious.
"What's a Portkey?" Ron asked
"An item with an enchantment placed on it, they're used to transport wizards from one spot to another at a prearranged time.. It was the most efficient way to travel to England" Professor McGonagall answered.
Suddenly Ron found his head completely cleared.
"Hold on… we're in England? Now?" Ron asked with a shocked look
"Indeed… how did you think we're going to travel?" McGonagall asked
"Ever heard of a plane?" Ron asked condescendingly
"Oh please, if Wizards were meant to fly… well, we'd use brooms" McGonagall replied.
"Brooms? As in flying broomsticks? … Ok now you're just messing with me… right?" Ron asked uncertainly.
McGonagall simply smiled before turning around and walking. Ron quickly got up and followed after her after slinging his bag over his shoulder, looking around Ron found himself to be in a small alley between two buildings with a large number of people walking in the street up ahead.
"Professor, where exactly are we?" Ron asked as he caught up with her.
"England, London to be exact, we are at the wizarding central of our world…" McGonagall said as she walked towards the exit to the alleyway. "… Mr Stoppable, welcome, to Diagon Alley"
Ron looked around and his eyes widened, they were in an old fashioned cobbled street, there were no cars just dozens of people all rushing around from place to place, everyone was dressed the way McGonagall had been that day in the classroom, unfamiliar shops lines either side of the street; Ollivanders, Flourish & Blotts, Quality Quidditch Supplies and Madam Malkin's Robes for All Occasions just to name a few.
"Whoa…" Ron exclaimed in monotone as he looked around at all the different people, he quickly spotted a group of robed children looking through the display window of 'Quality Quidditch Supplies' at what seemed to be a broomstick.
"You weren't kidding? You really do fly on brooms?" Ron said in shock.
"Oh yes Mr Stoppable, we even have a sport played on brooms called Quidditch, you may even be able to play at Hogwarts if you wish… but back to the matter at hand, this is where we'll get you school supplies and books"
Ron froze, suddenly an important fact flashed through his mind, Money, he had none.
"P-Professor, I don't umm, I haven't got…" Ron stuttered trying to get his sentence out.
"Follow me Mr Stoppable, first stop is Gringotts, the wizard bank" McGonagall said as she walked forward towards a snowy-white marble building at the end of the street which towered over the rest of the shops and had the word 'Gringotts' in golden letters just above a pair of huge wooden doors.
As they walked through the doors Ron flinched for a moment when he saw something strange, a small bald man with pointed ears and beady eyes, he woe a smart looking black suit with golden trimmings, when he… or it noticed Ron looking at him it gave a short bow before flashing a toothy smile revealing rows of razor sharp teeth.
Ron looked around the room they entered and noticed that there were at least two dozen of the creatures around the busy room.
"Professor, I don't mean to be rude but… what… who are…" Ron struggled to speak again, it truly hit him that he had stepped into a whole new world, he didn't want to say the wrong thing and insult somebody. Professor McGonagall must have noticed how he was struggling because she answered his unasked question.
"They're Goblins, Gringotts is run by Goblins, you'll find that quite a few fairy tail creatures you've read about do indeed exist in our world, Goblins, Trolls, Giants, Dragons… I know this might seem a little overwhelming at first but you'll get used to it in time Mr Stoppable, I assure you" McGonagall said reassuringly with a warm smile at the boy following her.
For the time being Ron's worries melted away and he continued following the Professor towards the nearest counter with a free goblin.
"Good morning, I've brought Mr Stoppable to make a withdrawal"
Ron's worries came back full force when he remembered the reason he was worried in the first place.
"I assume you have Mr Stoppable's key?" the goblin asked as he leaned forward.
"I do" McGonagall answered as he pulled a small metal key out of her pocket and placed it on the counter in front of the Goblin. The Goblin picked up the key and looked at it closely.
"… Everything seems to be in order, I'll have somebody take you down to the vault. Warnak!" the Goblin called and another Goblin approached quickly and took the key from the first Goblin.
"Follow me please" Warnak said and quickly walked towards another door leading off the hall.
Warnak held the door open for McGonagall and Ron. Ron was surprised to see that instead of more marble they were now in a narrow stone passage lit with flaming torches. At the end of the passage was a cart on top of small railway tracks.
"In please" Warnak ordered as he jumped into the back seat of the cart.
McGonagall climbed into the front seat of the cart followed by Ron who readied himself to confess to McGonagall.
"Professor, I don't have any moneeeeeeEEEEEEEE!!!" Ron screamed as the cart suddenly rocketed into the dark tunnel. Ron was instantly reminded of a rollercoaster as the cart took sharp turns and deep plunges down into the earth, left, right, left, left, right, middle fork… Ron lost count of how many turns they took, after a few minutes the cart came to a slow stop outside a locked steel door with the numbers 1021 on it. Warnak jumped out of the cart and walked to the door, McGonagall and Ron stepped out of the cart and took a minute to steady their legs.
"That… that… was awesome!!!" Ron shouted with a grin.
"Glad to see somebody enjoyed it… I on the other hand could have done without the ride…" Professor McGonagall said as she steadied herself.
Warnak put the key into the door and unlocked it, afterwards he placed his finger against the door and slowly stroked the door, Professor McGonagall noticed this and raised an eyebrow, she looked at the door and for the first time noticed the door number.
"There must be some mistake, this door number is over 1000" Professor McGonagall said in confusion.
"I assure you there is no confusion, this is the vault of Mr Ronald Stoppable" Warnak said as he steped back and the door slowly started to melt away.
"What's wrong?" Ron asked the professor.
"There are different levels of security to the vaults, numbers 1000 to 1100 are reserved for the wealthiest of wizarding families… but, you're just a student" Professor McGonagall explained.
Ron immediately knew there was a problem seeing as he was completely penniless.
"Professor McGonagall, I don't have any money" Ron admitted
"Oh, you do have money Ronald, yesterday an account was opened here and your account in America was converted from Muggle money to Wizard money, but that doesn't explain why your vault number is…" Professor McGonagall trailed off at the end when the vault door melted away to reveal what was inside.
"… Oh my…"
Ron looked inside and shared Professor McGonagall's expression. Inside the vault walls were stacked to the ceiling with gold, silver and bronze coins, the vault itself was bigger than the entrance hall of Gringotts and the roof was higher up and every inch of it was covered with the different coins.
"Mr Stoppable, just how wealthy were you in America?" Professor McGonagall asked with astonishment.
"I… I wasn't… the only time I ever had any real money was…" Ron slapped a hand to his head as he realised where all the money had come from.
"The Naco!" Ron exclaimed out loud.
"Naco? What on earth is a Naco?" Professor McGonagall asked.
"Naco, it a menu item I invented for Bueno Nacho… umm, a fast food resturant about a year ago, I get a Nickel for every Naco sold" Ron explained as he picked up a few of the foreign coins and looked at them.
"Mr Stoppable, I doubt something like that would generate a money flow of this level!" Professor McGonagall said sternly.
"Professor, the Naco is a popular item on the menu and there are 50'000 Bueno Nacho branches worldwide, you do the math" Ron said with a smile
Professor McGonagall did indeed do the math quickly in her head, if what he said was true then if each branch of this restaurant was to sell just one Naco then that alone would earn Ron 250'000 American dollars. At that moment Professor McGonagall realised that Ron was one of the wealthiest Wizards in the world.
"Professor, I'm guessing these aren't English Pounds are they?" Ron asked as he held up a Golden coin.
Professor McGonagall snapped out of her shock and looked at Ron, it astounded her that even though he was an extremely wealthy Wizard he didn't know a single thing about Wizard currency.
"No, they're not, pay attention now Ronald, Wizard currency is quite different from Muggle's. The Gold one's are called Galleons, Silver ones are Sickle's and the Bronze ones are called Knuts. There are seventeen Sickles to a Galleon and Twenty-nine Knuts to a Sickle…"
After a quick explanation of Wizard money and a second trip in the underground cart Ron found himself back in Diagon Alley with a pouch jingling with Galleons, Sickles and Knuts.
"Ok, first things first, your Uniform, you'll want to go to Madam Malkin's for that…" Professor McGonagall said as she lead Ron to the first shop.
"Ok, go in and tell the shop keeper that your going to Hogwarts, she'll do the rest… if you would allow me to handle some of your money I can collect some of your other school equipment myself whilst you are fitted…" Professor McGonagall offered.
Ron simply nodded and reached into his money pouch to hand a large handful of coins to Professor McGonagall.
Professor McGonagall shook her head at him, she ended up giving back over three quarters the amount of money he had handed her, knowing what she had now was more than enough.
"I'll return soon, please don't wander off from the shop" Professor McGonagall warned before walking back out of the shop.
Ron walked into Madam Malkin's nervously.
"Hello dear, how can I help you?" a kind looking woman asked as she approached him.
"I'm, umm. I'm g-going to Hogwarts and I n-need…" Ron stuttered nervously.
"Ah, say no more… hop up onto the stool…"
After about half an hour Ron was standing outside Madam Malkin's with an armful of different robes all brandishing the Hogwarts seal. A few minutes later Professor McGonagall reappeared with a large Trunk wheeling behind her.
"Ok, I see you've gotten you Robes, I have collected your trunk along with some of our other equipment such as your books and your telescope" Professor McGonagall explained as she opened the trunk and allowed Ron to stow his robes, just before Professor McGonagall closed the trunk Ron could have sworn he saw one of the books inside move on it's own.
"Ok, now all we need is your potion supplies and your wand" Professor McGonagall said as she lead Ron towards a rather dark shop on the corner of Diagon Alley and another road called Knockturn Alley.
Inside Professor McGonagall approached a balding man with Ron's list in hand.
"I need a set of glass phials, a standard pewter cauldron size 2 and a set of basic potion ingredients" Professor McGonagall ordered the creepy man, she seemed determined not to spend a second longer in this shop than she had too.
As the man went to work gathering up the different items Ron's pocket stirred and Rufus popped his head out of it, he'd kept hidden throughout the trip with the Portkey and the ride in Gringotts, he figured it was for his own safety, but now something caught his interest, Rufus sniffed the air for a few moment before finding a recognisable smell.
"Mmm, cheese!!!" Rufus squeaked as he jumped unnoticed out of Ron's pocket and scampered across the ground. Rufus followed the smell up onto a desk and to an unlabelled bottle which didn't have a lid. Rufus gave the contense of the bottle one last smell before tipping the bottle over and taking a sip.
"Ok I have you items right here, that'll be… WHAT ON EARTH IS THAT CREATURE DOING?!!" the creepy old man yelled as he looked past his customers at Rufus.
Professor McGonagall and Ron spun around and saw Rufus.
"Rufus no, you don't know what that is!" Ron shouted in panic as he rushed to Rufus and picked him up. Rufus knew a few moment after he drank the potion that something was wrong, he felt a pressure building up in his stomach, a burning sensation mixed with a gassy feeling. Rufus groaned as he fell onto his back in Ron's hands.
"DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHAT YOU'VE DONE!!!" the shopkeeper shouted in anger right into Ron's face whilst trying to make a grab for Rufus.
Professor McGonagall saw the exchange and quickly moved between Ron and the shopkeeper.
"Control yourself! You're screaming at a student for heaven's sake, I hrdley see what the problem is, the creature only took a small sip of whatever that is" Professor McGonagall said as she pointed at the unlabeled potion.
Rufus was still groaning while clutching his stomach and laying in Ron's palms.
"Hey Buddy, you ok? Come on answer me" Ron said in worry.
Rufus felt the pressure build up in his gut and let it out, a belch erupted from Rufus along with a small burst of fire.
"Woah!" Ron shouted as he moved his face back away from the burst of fire.
Ron's shouted gained the attention of Professor McGonagall, she spun around and watched what was happening, Rufus let out a few more bursts of fire before he turned around to lay on his stomach and started changing, Rufus's legs changed first, their shape first and then he sprouted three semi-sharp claws from each paw, Ron and Professor McGonagall watched in fascination as Rufus continued to change, his pink skin disappeared and was replaced by brownish-green scales, his neck extended slightly and became thinner, his buck teeth disappeared and was replaced by a set a razor sharp teeth, his beady eyes became slanted with slitted pupils, a pair of tiny horns grew from the back of his head, his tail grew longer and grew a spike at the end, finally a pair of wings sprouted and unfolded from his back.
"R-Rufus? Is that you?" Ron said in shock as he looked down at the new creature in the palms of his hands.
"Uh huh, is me, is me!" the creature squeaked as it nodded it's head.
"My goodness, a Dragon!" Professor McGonagall said in shock as she placed a hand over her mouth.
"D-Dragon? Rufus turned into a Dragon?!" Ron said in shock as he looked down at his little friend, Rufus' size hadn't changed but everything else had.
"GIVE IT TO ME!!!" the shopkeeper shouted again and went to grab Rufus out of Ron's hand.
Rufus reacted quickly, he backed away in Ron's hand and accidentally let out a small burst of fire from his mouth. Both the shopkeeper and Rufus squeaked, Rufus as he placed his new claws over his mouth in shock to stop any more fire from coming out, and the shopkeeper as he placed his now scolded finger into his mouth.
Professor McGonagall suddenly looked furious, but not at Ron or Rufus, she quickly turned around and snatched the potion off the counter and took a quick sniff, sure enough it smelled heavily of cheese.
"This is a Transfiguration potion!!!" Professor McGonagall shouted loudly at the shopkeeper who's eyes widened in fear.
"N-No it's just… w-what business is it of yours, that Dragon is mine now!" the shopkeeper said loudly as he regained some courage.
"Don't give me that… you know as well as I that Transfiguration potions are illegal, especially ones for Dragons… I can assure you that the DMLE is going to hear of this!" Professor McGonagall said in anger as she collected Ron's potion supplies leaving the money for them on the counter and quickly ushered Ron and the transformed Rufus out of the shop and away from the furious shopkeeper.
After stowing the potion supplies into his trunk and carefully letting Rufus slip back into his cargo pants pocket Ron turned to McGonagall determined to get some answers.
"Professor, what happened back there? What happened to Rufus?" Ron asked with worry.
"Ronald… what your Mole-Rat drank was a Transfiguration potion, it is a highly illegal potion used to change one creature into another creature… it was used by poachers decades ago, they'd force feed the Potion to creatures to change them into what they needed and then slaughtered them…" Professor McGonagall revealed. "… the potion for Dragons was the worst, thousands of creatures were Transfigured into Dragon only to be slaughtered for their hide, teeth and horns… it got so bad that eventually the Potion was made Illegal"
"How long does the potion last?" Ron asked
"… Ronald, if the potion were to wear off then anything that Poachers stripped from their kills would change back too…" Professor McGonagall explained, hoping that Ron would figure out the rest.
"… It's permanent… s-so Rufus can't change back?" Ron asked sadly.
"I'm afraid not" Professor McGonagall said sadly.
Ron felt sorry for his friend but tried to keep a good attitude.
"Oh well, could have been worse buddy, you could'a turned into a Monkey" Ron joked with a smile but couldn't help but shiver from the thought.
"Yelch… Monkey!" Rufus said as he poked his head out of Ron's pocket for a moment.
"Why did you drink that anyway? I thought you learned your lessen about drinking strange liquids after the EggNog incident!" Ron said in a slightly angry tone.
"Mmm, cheese!!!" was Rufus' only reply.
"Cheese? The Potion had cheese in it?" Ron asked
"Not quite" Professor McGonagall interrupted "Even thought it is illegal it is still used by some groups, the cheese smell is added to mask the real smell of the potion so it isn't easily discovered by authorities" Professor McGonagall explained as they approached an old looking shop.
"That man will be lucky if he only get sent to Azkaban after I inform the DMLE of what he's doing" finished with an angry tone.
"Azkaban? DMLE? Man… it's gonna take ages to learn everything I need to know!" Ron said with a groan, suddenly he felt his chances of getting into Hogwarts decrease.
"Azkaban is a Wizard prison and DMLE stands for Department of Magical Law Enforcement" Professor McGonagall explained as she came to a stop "Well Mr Stoppable, this is our last stop… you're on your own in here" Professor McGonagall said as she looked through the shop window.
Ron looked up and read the sign 'Ollivander's: Makers of Fine Wands Since 382bc'.
"I shall wait out here Mr Stoppable, receiving your wand is not something I can help you with…" Professor McGonagall said as she set down Ron's trunk and took a seat on a bench outside the shop.
Ron nodded and walked inside the shop, the jingle of a bell above the door alerted somebody standing in the back of the shop. As an elderly man with curly white hair approached Ron, he took a look around the shop, every wall was stacked with hundreds of rectangular boxes.
"Hello, I'm Mr. Ollivander, how can I help you?" Ollivander asked.
"I, umm, I need a wand" Ron answered nervously.
"Ahh, very well, lets see what we can do" Ollivander muttered as he turned around and started scanning boxes. After a moment he picked a box and slid it from it's space, he opened the box and pulled out a wand.
"Oak, nine inches with a Unicorn tail hair" Ollivander said as he passed it to Ron.
Ron took the wand cautiously, as soon as his fingers touched it a small puff of smoke erupted from the tip. Immediately Ollivander grabbed the wand back and placed it back where it came from. After another minute Ollivander returned to Ron with another wand.
"Try this one, Mahogany, eleven inches with a dragon heartstring" Ollivander said with a smile as he passed the wand to Ron. Ron took the wand and less than a second later it was snatched away again by Ollivander who quickly disappeared into the back of the shop.
Ron had stayed quiet since Ollivander started giving him wands and then snatching them away, he didn't understand the process but for now he'd just go along with it.
Ollivander was in the back looking around for another appropriate wand when something caught his attention, one of the boxes shook violently. Ollivander abandoned what he was doing and approached the box, it shook again causing several boxes stacked near the ceiling to fall to the ground.
Ollivander slowly reached out and pulled the shaking box from it's place, it immediately stopped shaking. Ollivander opened the box and his eyes widened when he realised which wand it was.
"Could it be?…" Ollivander muttered as he turned around and walked back to the front counter to see the young man who had entered his shop a few minutes ago.
"What is your name son?" Ollivander asked as he approached him.
"Ron Stoppable" Ron answered.
Ollivander's eyebrow arched at the uncommon name as he reached into his box and pulled out a black wand and passed it to Ron.
"Now… try this one…"
Ron took the wand and suddenly felt something, like an electrical shock that caused his body to shake for a moment before a blast bright white light emitted form the wand, the light was so bright Ron and Ollivander had to close their eyes. Finally the wand let out a shockwave that blasted outwards, Ron fell to the ground still holding the wand, Ollivander fell back and hit the wall, every single wand box in the shop toppled to the ground and the display window of the shop shattered.
It took a moment for Ron to regain his bearings, as he slowly sat up and shook the cobwebs from his head the door to the shop opened and a very dishevelled Professor McGonagall stumbled into the shop with a worried look on his face.
"What on earth happened?" Professor McGonagall asked worriedly as she carefully wiped several chips of glass off her cloak, she been sitting a few meters away from the windows when they'd shattered. Ron turned around with a stunned look on his face.
"I… umm, I think I just blew up the shop… sorry?" Ron offered
"Hahaha…" Ollivander chuckled as he stood up. "… marvellous, absolutely marvellous!!!" he said as he clapped his hands together with a warm smile on his face, he didn't seem to mind that his shop had just been wrecked.
"Mr Ollivander, what has happened?" Professor McGonagall asked sternly.
"We found young Mr. Stoppable a wand of course, haha" Ollivander said as he took a few steps over the fallen wands and approached Ron.
"Lad, Ollivander's wand shop has been in possession of that wand you're holding for over a thousand years and now I've finally found it's owner" Ollivander revealed.
This information seemed to shock Professor McGonagall.
"A thousand years? That's almost as long as Hogwarts has been open" Professor McGonagall said.
"Hey excuse me! But would somebody please tell me what the hell is going on?" Ron said annoyed that the two were having a conversation about what happened without explaining.
Ollivander looked down at him and furrowed his brow in confusion.
"You… you don't know?" Ollivander asked.
"Know what!" Ron said angrily.
Ollivander looked at Professor McGonagall for some kind of explanation.
"Ronald is a Muggle born, he only found out about our world two days ago" Professor McGonagall explained.
Ollivander turned back to Ron and held a hand out to him. Ron hesitated for a moment before taking the hand and being pulled to his feet.
"I'm sorry Mr Stoppable, I assumed you knew… a wizard does not choose his wand, the wand chooses the wizard, that's what I was doing earlier by giving you different wands, I was seeing which one would react to you… and then I saw this one…" Ollivander said as he pointed to the black wand now in Ron's hand. "…that wand was carved from a branch of a Whomping Willow, twelve inches long and for it's core, a slither from the sword of Godric Griffindor"
Professor McGonagall let out a startled gasp as she stared at the wand in Ron's hand. How many more times was Ron going to surprise her today, first it was revealed that he was one of the wealthiest wizards in the world, then he became the owner of the smallest dragon in existence and now he was the owner of an obviously rare and old wand.
"Oh yes Mr Stoppable." Ollivander said as he leaned forward "I haven't been this surprised in years, not even two years ago when another special young man collected his own wand… I'll tell you the same thing I told him, I think we can expect great things from you Mr Stoppable."
Ten minutes later Ron and Professor McGonagall had left Ollivanders after paying seven Galleons for his new wand. Professor McGonagall lead Ron through an archway at the end of Diagon Alley which closed behind them, directly in front of them was an inn/bar called 'The Leaky Cauldron'.
"You'll be saying here for the duration of your tutoring, your Tutor should arrive tomorrow, until then you may explore Diagon Alley as much as you wish, but I must ask that you stay away from Knockturn alley and not to forget the law I told you about, regarding underage Magic…" Professor McGonagall said as she walked into the inn with Ron trailing behind her.
"Now, it's been a long day so I suggest you get some rest or perhaps take a look at some of your books to brush up on your knowledge before your Tutor gets here, you'll need all the help you can get… I'll be on my way now, I must speak to the headmaster about what has happened today"
With those last words Professor McGonagall turned around and walked out of the bar leaving Ron alone.
A few minutes later Ron was standing in a simple room upstairs after being shown there by a man named Tom, the owner of the leaky cauldron.
Ron approached the bed and reached into his pocket pulling out Rufus, the mole-rat turned Dragon.
"Well buddy, hell of a first day huh?" Ron asked as he placed Rufus down on the bed side desk.
Rufus turned around a few times and stretched his small wings as he got comfortable and let out a yawn.
Ron turned back to his trunk and curiosity overtook his fatigue, he pulled the truck to his bed and sat down, opening the trunk he tried to decide which book to read first.
"Ok lets take a look see…" Ron muttered as he picked up one book at a time "… Standard book of spells, Magical Theory, Magical Drafts and potions, the Monster Book of Monsters, WAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!" Ron fell backwards and dropped all his other books as the Monster book of Monsters suddenly came alive and jumped at his face.
"WAA! AHH, OH, OH THIS IS SICK AND WRONG!!!" Ron screamed as he fell backward off the bed drying to pry off the book.
The next day Ron was out exploring Diagon Alley, it took all his willpower not to cast any of the spells he read about last night, he stayed up almost the entire night reading, he's already finished half of the Standard Book of Spells, what really blew his mind was when he saw that the pictures in the books were actually moving. As he explored Diagon alley he decided that he'd wear his new robes in order to get used to them, otherwise he'd be spending the first few days at school tripping over himself.
As he passed by Ollivanders he noticed that the Windows were back to normal and the inside of the shop looked like nothing had happened. He kept walking up the alley when he spotted something, a small news stand with a man and woman standing behind it, and on the front of the stand was a newspaper called the 'Daily Prophet' with the following headline.
'SIRIUS BLACK STILL AT LARGE'
Underneath was a mug shot of an angry looking man with long dark hair and a messy beard & moustache.
"How much for the paper?" Ron asked.
"Four Knuts" snapped the man quickly, he was obviously in an irritable mood.
Ron ignored the man's attitude and pulled out his money pouch.
"Knuts… Knuts, sorry are they the Bronze ones or the Silver ones?" Ron asked in obvious confusion and embarrassment at forgetting something so basic.
The man looked at Ron's money pouch and saw how bulky it was, his eyes gleamed for a moment.
"The Silver ones, AHH!" the man answered and immediately he was hit over the head with a rolled up paper by the woman standing behind him.
"Try that again an' you're sacked, got it?" the woman said as she held the newspaper up to the man like a sword. The man nodded quickly, the woman turned to Ron and her attitude changed too.
"So sorry about that luv, Knuts are the Bronze ones, not the silver" the woman said kindly.
Ron shot a glare at the man who tried to rob him before buying the paper and paying five Knuts to the woman instead of four as a thanks for stopping him from getting ripped off.
Ron walked towards a small restaurant and took a seat before reading the paper.
'SIRIUS BLACK STILL AT LARGE'
Sirius Black, possibly the most infamous prisoner ever to be held in Azkaban fortress, is still eluding capture, the Ministry of Magic confirmed today.
Ron read on about the escaped prisoner, about how he murdered thirteen people with a single curse and was sent to Azkaban prison for twelve years. As Ron read on he found a lot of words he didn't understand, Dementors, Aurors… but he did noticed that the paper referred to somebody several times but a name was never mentioned, they just kept referring to him as 'You-Know-Who' or 'He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named', in the end Ron just got frustrated and put the paper in his bag hoping he could figure it out later.
After looking around Diagon Alley for a while Ron found a shop called Flourish & Blotts that was packed with books of all kind, he guessed that this was where Professor McGonagall had gotten his books from. After looking around the shop for a few minutes Ron found a book with another moving picture on the front, this one showed people flying of brooms passing a ball to each other and throwing them through elevated rings. 'Quidditch for beginners'.
Even though he knew he already had plenty of books to read he decided to buy a copy of the book along with a book about Dragons. Ten minutes later Ron was walking down Diagon Alley holding the Quidditch book in front of him reading the basics of the sport. Ron was busy reading when something caught his attention, he looked away from his book to see the strangest girl he had ever seen coming out of Quality Quidditch Supplies carrying a long brown package and looking very happy, she looked about the same age as him, but the thing that really caught his attention was her bubblegum pink hair. After coming out of the shop she started looking around for something and she noticed him looking at her and a smile slowly crept onto her mouth when she noticed him looking at her with wonder. She walked away from the shop and right past Ron who couldn't stop looking at her, as she passed him she looked away for a moment before turning back to him as she passed by, Ron stumbled in his walk when he saw a pig snout where her nose had been a moment ago.
"Woah what the…" Ron said as he stumbled in shock and bumped into somebody hard.
The girl burst into laughter as her nose transformed back to the way it was a moment ago.
"Nymphadora, hurry up dear!" a woman shouted not too far from where the girl was walking. The girl's face fell as she turned around and glared at the woman who had called her.
"Mum! Don't call me that!" the girl pleaded as she caught up to her mother and disappeared into the crowd.
When the girl was gone Ron seemed to realise that he had bumped into somebody, he looked up and saw a dishevelled man who seemed to be very angry, he stood tall dressed in a black cloak with long white hair reaching part way down his back, in his left hand he held a black cane with a silver head.
"Oh, sorry dude, my bad" Ron said as he quickly stood up and picked up his fallen book. Ron made to walk away when the man reached out and grabbed Ron's arm hard making him drop his book again.
"Ow, let go of me" Ron said as he tried to pull his arm away from the man's painfully strong grip.
"Who are you?" the man asked as he pulled Ron closer to him.
"Ron Stoppable, now please let go of me!" Ron answered in a hurry.
"Very well Mr Stoppable, tell me why you, an American, are wearing Hogwarts robes" the man said as his grip tightened even more. Ron winced as the pain in his arm started to grow.
"B-Because I'm a student at Hogwarts… let go!!!" Ron answered and gritted his teeth as he ordered the man to let go of him.
"Liar, there has never been an American at Hogwarts and there never shall AHHH!!!" the man suddenly let go and stumbled back as a sharp pain shot through his hand.
Ron looked at his shoulder and saw Rufus standing there growling at the white haired man with his new wings spread upwards.
"Why you insolent little…" the white haired man placed his now bleeding hand on the top of his cane as if he was drawing a sword from it's scabbard, but then he stopped and looked around seeing that they were starting to draw a crowd. The man calmed down and let his cane lay in his left hand normally. He stepped towards Ron casting only a quick curious glance at the creature that seemed to be a tiny dragon on Ron's shoulder. He quickly turned back to Ron and glared for a moment before walking away in a hurry. A moment later the crowd dispersed.
"Thanks buddy" Ron said with a smile to Rufus, Rufus in turn gave a quick smile and thumbs up… of at least Ron thought it was a thumbs up, with Rufus' new claws it was hard to tell. After wards Rufus scampered back down Ron's arm and dropped into his open pocket.
"My goodness, are you ok?" a voice asked from behind Ron, he turned around and came face to face with a girl with long bushy brown hair.
"Yeah I'm fine thanks, what a jerk!" Ron said as he rubbed his arm and looked at the retreating form of the white haired man.
"That's Lucius Malfoy, not the most pleasant of people… anyway, I'm sorry but I couldn't help overhearing your accent, American right?" the girl asked.
Ron nodded in confirmation.
"Then you must be Mr Stoppable, I'm Hermione Granger, your tutor" Hermione introduced herself and held out a hand. Ron took it and shook it.
"Umm, nice to meet you, I'm Ron"
As Ron introduced himself he felt Hermione's grip tighten for a moment and she stifled a gasp when Ron said his name, she seemed to relax for a moment before speaking again.
"O-Ok then R-R… Mr Stoppable… please follow me, we have a lot to do…" Hermione said as she let go of Ron's hand and quickly turned away but Ron seemed to notice Hermione quickly wipe her eyes after she turned around.
'Did I upset her somehow? Man I really need to be more careful' Ron thought to himself, since he arrived in Diagon Alley he had tried desperately hard not to insult anybody or say the wrong thing. Now less than a minute after meeting his tutor he had said something to upset her.
To Be Continued…
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