Mentor and his Protégé, a Harry Potter fic
Disclaimer: Harry Potter universe was not, is not, will not be mine etcetera. It belongs to J.K. Rowling and folk from Warner Brothers, Bloomsbury, and awfully a lot more. BUT MY RHYMES ARE MINE! MWAHAHAHAHA!
AN: There is a saying - If there is nothing else to read, write! So, after reading so many fanfiction, I decided to write my own piece of work. I just ask you, oh great and fearsome reader, to take my English grammar easily, because it's not my native language. I try to make the story's pace moderately fast, because, hello? Who likes to read about Harry jogging around the lake. It's very AU with plenty of 'what if?' The story mainly will dance around the mentor-protégé relationship between Dumbledore and Harry. Also, if you don't like my silly idiotic rhymes, please just read canon one's instead. The first three years will be much shorter than the last four (the story will be in 4 parts – Prologue (years 1-3), year 4, 5, 6, 7), so don't become incredulous if you find huge jumps here and there. Chapters will be sometimes short, sometimes long. Ah yes... I made Divination lessons not elective, but, instead standard – Who cares?
AN2: I don't have anything against gay people, I don't think that reader is stupid and I don't try to promulgate light drugs, please people, be reasonable, it's just for the sake of rhyme and fun. And NO this note 2 doesn't mean that Harry or some other character, original or canonical, will smoke weed/cigarettes/whatever.
AN3(01.10.2011): Dear readers, after I skimmed the Prologue I found a horde of mistakes in it, e.g. thing instead of think, or some nonsense instead of what was meant, so here you go - the major revision of the whole prologue. Please tell me if it's better now or I'm just wasting my time.
Chapter One: Surprise!
The night of October 31st 1981 was truly beautiful. It was a kind of night which writers and poets and great thinkers loved to exalt so much. Just imagine the scenery: a huge silvery crescent, surrounded by myriads of stars on the pitch black canvas of the night. Any accidental spectator would stop whatever he or she was doing and freeze to bathe in its glory, breathing with full chest the fresh cold air.
One place though surely had all its occupiers asleep - in a small town of Little Whinging, Surrey, The United Kingdom, in the Privet Drive, house number four.
A manager of a small company, called 'Grunnings', who was a type of man people tend to call 'fat' (although 'whale' would fit him more), was sleeping with his wife, a thin woman with a horsey face, peacefully. Their little one year old son, who surely was already a miniature copy of his father, too was having some colourful dreams. If Vernon and Petunia Dursley knew what was about to happen they would call the police and barricade their whole house, twice, but alas, or fortunately, they didn't.
The Dursley patriarch woke up suddenly - a terrible feat of hiccup had hit him. He had a sudden feel of foreboding - something was about to happen, and he knew he wasn't going to sleep this day any more.
Life was a hard thing, utterly unforgiving and tended to lack any kind of justice or kindness. Albus Dumbledore knew it better than anybody else in the, wizarding or none, world, in his ninety nine years of life so close to a whole century. He had a small child, who was wrapped in nappies and was currently sleeping calmly, unaware that both of his parents had been killed today.
And that fact, that little boy's parents were killed by a cruel dark wizard called Voldemort (although everyone but Albus and a few other people preferred to call him you-know-who out of their fear), and that the aforementioned boy was the main reason of the Dark Lord's death, was going to be all over the headlines of any self-respecting newspaper, tabloid, magazine, of not just the wizarding Britain, but of the whole wizarding world.
But Albus Dumbledore knew something that no any other wizard or witch would even try to think about - he knew that he was one of the main reasons of Potter couple very early demise. Such a beautiful and cheery couple they were.. Now dead, not even reaching their third decades of life.
The old wizard also knew that self-pitying was the least necessary thing right now - it would never help little Harry in any way.
Albus and Harry weren't alone - an old friend of the former was standing behind him. She was a strict elderly woman with glasses, dressed in a hat and plain black robes.
Dumbledore turned to his faithful friend, his sad facial expression explaining everything he wanted to explain much better than any words would ever achieve to.
"It's all my fault, Minerva. My political opposition is right - I am the old fool who is starting to loose his grasp. I failed again, naively thinking that a simple Fidelius Charm would save Potters from Voldemort..." he said, his usual eye twinkle having a nice vacation somewhere far far away from the British Islands.
"You are just a human, Albus, like all of us are, and humans tend to make mistakes – some of us more, some less. Nobody could ever foresee Black's betrayal - he seemed to be James' best mate. I still remember how strong their friendship was – they were brothers in all but blood, always inseparable." Minerva said, her words soothing the pain Albus was feeling.
"Forgive me, Harry. For everything the foolish old man did to you. I will dry the oceans, revert the skies - everything in my power to make you live a life you want. This I swear on my immortal soul."
Once these words were told, there was a bright blue flash of magic, which sealed the wizard's oath.
Knock, knock, knock... Nobody had answered... Albus and Minerva waited patiently... After five minutes of standing idly by the entrance door of the Privet Drive Number Four, Albus had finally lost his seemingly infinite patience and rang the doorbell.
Heavy footsteps and a kind of swearing that would make a veteran sailor blush like a pupil of a school for young maidens of the eighteenth century could be heard by anyone who would choose to be in close proximity of Dursley's household, but, fortunately, it was very late at night and people lived here as precisely as clock mechanism worked - at 7 am waking up, at 10 pm going to bed.
The entrance door was harshly swung open by an obese man with walrus-like moustache and small black piggish eyes.
"I don't know who you are and, honestly, I don't give a damn!" He started shouting, spitting saliva out of his huge mouth. His walrus-like moustache trembling in anger made him look even more intimidating. Yet after a closer look at the late visitors he was thunderstruck. "Wait! I know! You are those wand-pointing, nonsense-shouting freaks! Get out of my house! There is nothing here for you!" Vernon roared and tried to shut the door.
At this moment, some nearby observer could see a flash of steel in the aged wizard's eyes. Some unimaginable, harsh force stopped the fat man's attempt to close the door, making it absolutely immovable.
"Hello, Vernon. I see you haven't changed at all." Dumbledore greeted, his eyes cold. Not even a hint of smile was on his wrinkled face. "I have a proposition for you, to hear and, maybe, even accept."
"Did you even hear me, old freak? I don't want to hear any nonsense from you!. And stop doing your abra-kadabra nonsense right this instance, or I'll call the police and let them deal with your deranged kind." Vernon Dursley shouted angrily, shaking his right fist in front of Albus' face.
"Oh well, I just wanted to be polite, you know..." the old wizard whispered.
The door started to open on its own, moving Vernon away.
The pair entered without an invitation, audible or silent, taking in their surroundings for a few moments. They took blank-faced fat man by hands and slowly, but surely proceeded to the living room, dragging the resisting fat man with them.
Annoyed looking Petunia chose this moment to grace everybody with her most delightful appearance.
Her eyes widened in utter terror and she started to scream like a banshee.
"What's the matter of this? Who are you? VERNON! Aaaargh! NO! It's you again! What do you want from us? You won't take away my Dudders, freaks, he is an absolutely normal boy!"
"Calm down and sit, please, Petunia - we have a long discussion ahead." Dumbledore said, looking straight into her eyes. He subtly cast a quick succession of calming and cheering charms on her - he didn't have time to spare for a drama.
"Alright." she whispered blankly and sat on the edge of the sofa which her husband currently was occupying.
"Now I'm going to release Vernon from the spell on the condition that you will listen to my offer and think it through. That is very simple, really"
Minerva saw twinkling in Albus' eyes and her mouth corners twitched just a tiny little bit - she needed to keep the strict demeanor!
The negotiation was for very long and hard: Vernon obviously didn't want to accept Harry ('little freak' as he called the toddler) under his wing and resisted it as much as he could, literally with salivary foam at his mouth. His skinny wife's stare travelled from her husband's face to Dumbledore's one, back and forth. The old witch too was a mere observer, not interrupting the arguing men - Albus was doing a great job without her help. Finally being completely fed up with Mr Dursley stubbornness, the Albus smoothly changed his tactics, making the fat man start hearing him, at long last.
"… you will be completely compensated at my expense. Five thousand galleons, which are an equivalent of twenty five thousand British pounds, are to be transferred to your account monthly. Not that bad, is it?"
A happy greedy glint in Vernon's eyes made both the old wizard and Minerva sick. Sometimes Albus wondered what would happen if only people like Vernon walked on this planet.
"I accept such a generous offer, but I don't want to see or hear any magic... weirdness while this... Harry lives with us."
"I will make sure it happens, don't you worry, but, I must inform you in advance that I will see him regularly on every weekend, and, eventually, I will teach him Magic, although I promise that we won't disturb you in any way." Albus explained. "Is that acceptable?"
Even the stupidest of people would understand that this was not a question, and that Vernon's opinion didn't matter as much as the fat man would like it to. Still, the Dursley patriarch wasn't stupid – twenty five thousands BP is not a sum you find on the floor under the master bed in your house.
"Deal." He finally answered.
They sealed it by a firm handshake. Vernon was surprised at how strong the old man's grip was. It made his right hand's bones tremble, for God's sake!
A little black-haired bullet shot towards the old man, hugging him around the knees in the next moment.
"Uncle Albus, it's you!" the seven year old ball of positive energy cried in delight. Dumbledore chuckled at the child's antics.
"Well hello there, Harry. You are a big boy now, are you not?" he said, looking down at him.
"Yes, now I'm big enough to start practising spells!" the boy shouted excitedly. "Will you show me, as you promised?"
"Indeed, my boy. Did you learn the theory behind the Levitation spell?" Albus asked in a fake strict tone.
"Yes. The incantation is 'Wingardium Leviosa' and the wand movements are..." and that was the way the time had been passing for the following four years.
Every weekend Albus would come to Dursley's house and teach Harry magic, theory and practise, for the whole day. The little boy tried spells with Albus' wand which fascinated him a lot – his uncle said the white wooden stick wasn't ordinary - it was a legendary masterpiece, but he never told him the name of it or its history, promising to reveal this secret when Harry would be older, much older. Potter was also taught potions, arithmancy, and ancient runes. And sometimes the old man told Harry the stories about his parents and their friends, cutting out everything not suitable for small children: betrayal, death and a certain large-nosed man with black and greasy hair.
As Albus loved to say - 'For the Greater Good.'
By the time the boy turned 11, he learned all Hogwarts' first three years program and, because of Dumbledore being his role model, he was precociously mature for such an age. On the 31st of July Harry received his Letter of Acceptance in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardy. And new spectacles, which were charmed to always fit him ideally, as a gift from Dumbledore.
The old man personally accompanied him to the Diagon Alley for his school supplies shopping on the last day of August.
The day Harry explored the World of Magic for the first time left a mark in the boy's memory forever.
They entered the Leaky Cauldron by the Floo, a truly useful way of transporting between any two different fireplaces (that were connected to the Floo Network, of course) wizards had, which was generously provided by Miss Figg. When the guests of the old pub had seen great Albus Wolfric Brian Dumbledore, gracefully stepping out from a fireplace, and The-Boy-Who-Lived, being spat by it a moment later, they were utterly stunned. Just for a first few seconds, of course.
Then the madness of greetings and handshakes began. Harry, being warned beforehand by Dumbledore about the mind-boggling fame he had, wasn't gaping like a fish - he smiled charmingly to everyone who approached him, greeted them and asked how things went in their life then politely excusing himself by telling that he and his uncle had a lot of important things to do - Harry internally was rolling his eyes, a bit shocked that people ate such nonsense without salt and pepper, enjoying it as much as some delicacy from some posh 5-star restaurant.
Once Albus and Harry both had a true "light" English breakfast - fried eggs and tomatoes, sausages, bacon and toasts, accompanied by a few cups of strong tea, they proceeded to the Alley. Just like any other magical alley in the Wizarding world, Diagon was... crowded and big and... magical. Harry was so happy to see it all with his own eyes! Little, and not so little, colourful explosions, a wide range of smells, exclamations, greetings, cries of magic creatures and even Gobbledegook assaulted the senses of the excited green-eyed boy.
"So, Harry, what do you want to do first?" Dumbledore asked him with his trademark twinkling eyes.
Draco wasn't an ordinary eleven years old boy. He was pale, but not sickly, quite tall for his age, being 4 feet 11 inches, with a face of true heir of a Noble family - Malfoy family, hmph.
He was shopping for his first year at Hogwarts, more precisely, he was buying his first school uniform at Madam Malkin's at the moment. He snobbishly looked around the shop - why didn't his parents just ordered this old woman to take measures of him at their home?
His cold expressionless mask was completely shattered, like a fragile thin glass, when he saw his soon-to-be headmaster and a black haired, glasses wearing boy. One glance at the boy's forehead was enough for the scion of Malfoy family to recognize him.
"Headmaster", he nodded to Dumbledore, who replied with a grandfatherly smile, "It's a great pleasure to see you here. I was wondering what you were doing here, in the Diagon, until I saw who you are accompanying."
He turned to Harry. "Hello, my name is Draco, Draco Malfoy. And you must be Harry Potter."
"Nice to meet you, Draco." Harry replied with a friendly smile.
A kind looking middle-aged woman appeared from the thin air, smiling brightly.
"My dear, your uniform is complete. Would you like something else?" she asked. Draco's face twitched almost imperseptibly.
"No, madam Malkin. That is all I need from your great establishment for now." blond boy answered and took his package. " 'till the next time we meet, Harry"
"Bye" Potter waved to him.
After getting Harry's school supplies, they went to the Eeylops Owl Emporium. Harry bought a majestic snowy white owl that he named Hedwig after a long discussion with his uncle.
"That is the most beautiful name for the most beautiful owl, my boy" Albus commented, smiling.
"Thank you, uncle Albus" Harry replied, gently stroking Hedwig's feathers. The bird hooted and gently nipped his right index finger.
The last stop of the odd pair was the Ollivander's. It was an ancient looking shop with a sign on the front which told that Ollivander family had been wandcrafters since 382 B.C. , and Harry was feeling creepy by an atmosphere inside of it – a poor lighting revealed piles upon piles of dusty rectangular boxes with, obviously, wands inside everywhere from high wooden shelves to the floor under his feet.
"Ahh... Albus Dumbledore... A lot of time passed since you entered my shop, did it not?" the old man in his early seventies said. He had the most piercing gaze that saw right through a person he chose to turn it to.
"Yes, it did, Garrick. When was it? Ah... in 1892. I was such a troublemaker back then" Dumbledore replied jovially, then added jokingly. "You were a bit younger, also"
The wandmaker smiled, nodding his head, and turned his entrancing gaze towards Harry.
"Harry Potter, The-Boy-Who-Lived, I am honoured to finally meet you in person. You truly resemble your great parents. It was a challenge to find a suitable wand for them, but I'm sure you won't be any easier. Let's see..."
After a magical tape had taken the boy's measures on itself, Garrick started rummaging through the aforementioned piles, muttering something silently to himself.
"No, too flexible.. this one's too temperamental.. too long for him.."
He finally picked one black wand and gave it to Harry for a try.
"Ebony wood, thirteen inches with a unicorn hair."
When the wand started to produce a black cloud of smoke from its tip, he immediately snatched it from Harry's hands, shaking his head.
"No... What about..."
For the next four hours, which Harry thought were a little eternity, Ollivander had been searching for the right wand. With every wrong one, he got more and more excited thus proving to Harry once more that the magic folk indeed was weird.
Ollivander carefully gave him another wand, looking at the boy strangely.
Once the boy waved it in his hand, its tip lit with a fountain of little red sparks, sending warmness throughout his young body.
"Fascinating, Harry Potter. Holly, 11 inches, with a phoenix feather" the wand maker said, turning his gaze to Dumbledore, whose eyes lit in surprise. "This one is very special."
"But what's so great about it, sir?" Harry asked.
"This particular phoenix gave only two feathers from its tail. One is inside this wand. The wand with the other I gave to a little boy, who was very ambitious and smart. The man he'd become is known today around the whole Wizarding World as You-Know-Who. I expect great things to come from you, young man – the Dark Lord may be a terrible man, but great nevertheless." Ollivander half-whispered, his pale silver eyes entrancing Harry.
They left the shop and its gloomy atmosphere and Dumbledore put his hand on the boy's shoulder, assuring him that everything was well.
"You shouldn't worry, Harry. I believe that you will be the greatest Wizard ever in our world. Trust me"
"Do you really think so, uncle?" Harry asked the old man, proving to him once again that the boy was still a child.
Albus nodded to him, smiling warmly.
"Now, my boy, I think we both need the best remedy against the bad mood that humankind ever created."
Harry looked up at him
"What is it, uncle Albus?"
"This, young man, is, of course, dessert, or, if you prefer a more detailed description – an ice cream. Come, Florean Fortesque's is right behind that corner." the old wizard said, taking Harry's hand in his own.
AN4 and the last for this chapter, really.. (19.02.2012): Friends, Romans, Citizens=)) - I've tweaked the chapter a bit. Well not just by a bit..). I've noticed that chapter 2 is like a delta, you know - tomorrow I'll fix that too and the whole prologue.