Harry wasn't entirely sure how he got into this mess. All he knew was that once more, departing the Weasley's house to Diagon Alley, he'd managed to land himself in the grate of Borgin and Burkes. He coughed, dusting himself off and taking a look around, hoping that no one was at the counter. Thankfully, there wasn't anyone. The shop was dark and musty. Harry planned on leaving immediately, but something on the shop counter caught his eye.
Harry got up, dusting his muggle outfit off, and walked over to it. It wouldn't hurt just to have a peek, would it? But he wouldn't touch it. No, no, he didn't dare touch it. What if it was cursed? So he leant over the table while he adjusted his glasses. The item was a beautiful woman's necklace made of purple jewels. The jewels were set in a silver chain that was thick and, when Harry looked closely, encrusted with tiny diamonds. There was a single pendant on it that was the same purple as the other amethysts in the shape of a teardrop.
Suddenly, as Harry was pushing his glasses on his face, his fingers fumbled and his glasses fell right on top of it. For a moment, he forgot himself and reached for it without thinking about the necklace. His pinky finger brushed it as he picked up his glasses, setting them firmly on his face. He had nearly turned around and left before he had the overwhelming urge to put the necklace on.
He knew it was very, very bad when he couldn't control his hands, reaching for the necklace. Harry panicked, looking around and praying that there actually was someone around, so long as they could help him stop reaching for this!
But it was too late. His fingers closed around the clasp, opening it. His heart pounded as he watched the necklace come closer before it finally rested around his neck, on top of his hoodie. For a second, nothing happened, and Harry sighed with relief. Talk about counting your chickens before they hatch. The shift came quickly and painlessly. Harry was extremely confused as to how he was suddenly so close to the ground. It took him a moment to figure out how to move again.
After that, it was only a matter of checking himself all over to determine that he wasn't laying on the floor. Nor was he crouching or anything. No. He was standing. And he had paws. And a tail. He looked down at his flank and realized with a start that he was standing as a black cat rather than a human. He almost panicked again, before he felt himself hit with a spell. Borgin had come out from the back room while Harry was having his crisis, and noticed his unwelcome visitor. Harry was chased out of Borgin and Burkes with various stupefy spells that he was busy dodging and a few Incendio spells that singed his tail. Thankfully he was getting used to four paws really fast.
Harry ran away from Borgin's yelling, ears flat to his head as he hauled ass back to Diagon Alley. He had to find Ron and Hermione, somehow tell them what had happened, and have them get him back to normal. He had just got back into Diagon Alley as something black whipped past him, roughly his size. Harry was effectively distracted now that he felt safe again, and turned to look. A black tail disappeared around a corner, and Harry was easily able to identify it as a cat's.
"Oh there you are!" Harry's head whipped around. Hands were reaching for him, and he tried to get away, but it was no use. He was scooped up into the arms of a somewhat plump witch. He struggled for a moment before realizing that it would be pointless, as her grip was firm, and no amount of scratching and biting was going to change that. So instead he meowed piteously. "I've chased you half way down Diagon Alley, you naughty cat, you! Now let's get you back into the shop."
Harry sighed, which made the witch laugh, and he rested his head on her shoulder and watched as he was carried all the way back to Magical Menagerie. The witch just shut the door behind her and plunked him down on the front counter. It didn't take long for Harry to figure out that he had the run of the place. But the look she shot him as he stretched told him that if he attempted to escape 'again', there would be severe consequences, and he wouldn't like them. So Harry took his time looking around, hissing a warning at the little black rats playing hopscotch in the cage near the counter.
He ended up leaping from the counter to a very high shelf, laying down where he could see the door to the shop and the counter, and into the back room as well if he angled his head right. His black fur hid him well in the shadows, emerald eyes glittering.
When he shifted to lay down, putting his head on his paws, Harry noticed that the necklace was still around his neck, though it was much smaller and fit quite a bit more snugly. He decided that since it didn't pinch, and was mostly covered by his fur, that he didn't really mind. No matter how he tried to get it off, though, scratching at it, biting at it, tugging at it, it refused to come off.
Harry resigned himself to his fate, huffing and putting his head back down. How was he going to get himself out of here? The best thing that he could do, he decided, was bide his time and pray he wasn't purchased mistakenly. Obviously this witch thought he was that cat that had run by him earlier.
Harry had just gotten comfortable and closed his eyes, deciding that all things considered, it really wasn't too bad being a cat, when the door opened and the shop bell rang. He opened one eye lazily. There, standing awkwardly by the door, was Draco Malfoy. Narcissa was beside him, smiling encouragingly. Harry looked to the counter, noticing that the witch who had captured him earlier had disappeared into the back room.
Why was Draco here? Didn't he have an eagle owl? Why would he need another pet? Harry puzzled over this while Draco inspected the cages around the room, wriggling his fingers in the cage of the black rats that Harry decided that he definitely didn't like. Narcissa only watched from the middle of the shop floor. Both resumed a holier-than-thou air as soon as the shopkeeper reentered the room. All of a sudden, as the shopkeeper turned on a light on the counter as she greeted Narcissa and Draco, Narcissa's eyes came to rest upon Harry.
"Draco, look." She pointed, getting Draco's attention. She was pointing at Harry.
Thankfully, cats lack the ability to appear surprised effectively enough that those who have not been around a cat before cannot recognize it. Draco came close to the shelf, raising a hand to attempt to beckon Harry down from there, assumingly so that he could get a better look.
"Oh, I wouldn't bother with him." The witch behind the counter laughed nervously, drawing even Harry's attention.
"Why not?" Narcissa asked, as if daring the woman to tell her.
Draco had not looked at the woman, but it was obvious that he was listening. Harry paid him no attention, instead listening to the shopkeeper. If he was going to be a cat for right now, he might as well act like the one she had lost.
"Dante isn't very social. He's been here for about three or four years. Nobody really wants him, poor thing. He ends up scratching every customer that reaches for him." Come to think of it, she was eyeing Draco's extended hand warily, her eyes warning Harry not to harm him.
Harry got up, stretching and yawning, revealing sharp white teeth. As Narcissa chatted with the shop keeper, Draco assessed him. Harry sat, staring back into Draco's silver eyes, which narrowed. The tip of Harry's tail twitched constantly, flicking back and forth as he tried to decide what to do. Draco had withdrawn his hand, which made Harry crouch at the edge of the shelf, still watching him. Just as the boy turned away, Harry jumped. His landing was less than expert, but thankfully Draco caught him just before he toppled off of the Slytherin's shoulder.
Harry sat calmly on Draco's shoulder, proud of himself for not missing completely. Even if he had fumbled a bit. If Draco could get him out of here, then Harry could at least take off before they got very far and then resume his search for Hermione and Ron. Draco was his ticket out.
Malfoy, on the other hand, was pretending as though that hadn't happened, instead continuing to roam the shop with Dante's heavy weight on his shoulder. Dante wasn't paying attention to him, instead looking around the shop as if this perspective wasn't one he had experienced before. The shopkeeper had gone silent, possibly at the out-of-character act that the cat had just committed. The cat's presence, he found, was actually rather comforting, despite its ignoring him.
Finally, after a few more minutes, he turned to the witch behind the counter.
"How much for the cat?" He asked, gesturing at Dante.
"Twelve galleons and thirteen sickles." She stammered, stunned.
Narcissa paid, took Draco's shoulder, and as soon as Draco had managed to get a hold on the cat (the thing didn't want to get off of his shoulder, and put up somewhat of a fight. Thankfully, in the end, he was able to wrap his arms securely around the animal.), they Apparated back to Malfoy Manor. The rest of their purchases would, of course, be shipped to them separately.
Lucius appeared before them suddenly, obviously having Apparated as well. He sneered at Draco's new pet, eyes narrowing in disapproval.
"You couldn't get something more useful to replace that dreadful owl?" He growled. Draco stood his ground, Dante stilling in his arms.
"It was more like the cat chose me rather than me choosing it." He muttered under his breath.
"What was that?" Lucius asked dangerously, obviously not liking any sort of back talk.
"Nothing, Father." Draco said out loud.
"Better not have been. You've disappointed me too much lately. See to it that you do not again. And try and transfigure that collar into something less womanly, for Merlin's sake." And with that, Lucius stalked off, Narcissa following at a distance. Draco finally let Dante go, the cat clawing its way back up his robes and onto its perch on his shoulder. With that, Draco made his way up to his room, closing the door softly behind him.
Harry jumped down from Draco's shoulder, his stomach churning. This had not gone as planned. Not only were cats not supposed to Apparate, as proven by the sick feeling he was getting, but he was trapped in Malfoy Manor. He was trapped with Draco. Speaking of the youngest Malfoy, Draco had collapsed onto his bed, face down in the pillow. Harry was quite content not to go near him at all, instead curling up on the window seat on the far side of the room and watching the boy while basking himself in the sunlight.
He had to get out of here. He had to come up with a plan. Because what was going to happen if the Order found out that he was trapped like this? It wouldn't take long for the entire Wizarding world to know that Harry Potter was missing.
Hopefully y'all will like this new story. XD I apologize if I end up late on a few updates, but let it be known that I am determined to finish this. Even if I have a crappy muse.
Anyways, if any of you have ideas for what might happen in later chapters, I would love to hear them! X3 I'm entirely open to suggestions.