A Special Wand
Now only one thing remained, Harry's wand. He was excited to get his own wand. Hagrid led Harry to Ollivander, the best wandmaker if you believed Hagrid. When they entered the shop, for some reason the back of Harry's neck prickled. The dust and the silence in the small shop were eerie.
"Good afternoon." Said a soft voice.
Harry was taken by surprise. He normally noticed people coming close to him. But this man, he didn't notice at all. The man was old; his eyes shining like moons through the gloom of his shop.
"Hello." Harry said.
"Ah, yes, I was wondering when I would see you, Mr Potter." He said, not making it sound like a question at all. "You have your mother's eyes. It seems like yesterday that she came in here to buy her first wand. Ten and a quarter inches long, swishy, made of willow. Nice for charms work."
Mr Ollivander moved closer to Harry. Those eyes were a bit creepy.
"Your father, on the other hand, favoured a mahogany wand. Eleven inches, pliable. A little more power and excellent for transfiguration. Well, I said your father favoured it – it's really the wand that chooses the wizard." He said.
"That sounds like wands have their own personalities, Mr Ollivander. How is that possible?" Harry asked.
"Ah, you see, no two wands are the same. When I make wands, I use mainly three core materials, dragon heartstrings, unicorn hair and phoenix feathers. Now no unicorn is like the other, the same with phoenixes and dragons. It also depends on the wood. Some woods are more temperamental than others and some don't like certain personality traits in a wizard and will refuse to work for him. And of course you will never get as good results with another wand as your own. Wandlore is a very deep branch of magic." Then he seemed to notice Hagrid.
"Rubeus! Rubeus Hagrid, how nice to see you again. Oak, sixteen inches, rather bendy, wasn't it?" he asked.
"It was, sir, yes." Hagrid said.
"Good wand, that one. But I suppose they snapped it in half when you got expelled?" Said Mr Ollivander suddenly stern.
"Er,- yes, they did, sir, but I still have the pieces." He added brightly.
"But you don't use them?" Said Mr Ollivander sharply.
"Oh no, sir." Hagrid said hastily and hid his pink umbrella behind him.
'Guess I know now why he uses the umbrella to tip the stone.' Harry thought finding this amusing.
He pushed a strand of hair that had fallen in his eyes up, shortly revealing the healing scar. Mr Ollivander noticed and concentrated on him again.
"Ah, yes, that's where…" He said, looking at the scar. "I'm sorry to say that I was the one who sold the wand that did that. Thirteen and a half inches. Yew. Powerful wand, very powerful, and in the wrong hands … Well, if I'd known what that wand was going to do in the world." He trailed off on thoughts.
"Nonetheless, we need to find you your first wand, Mr Potter. Which one is your wand arm?" Ollivander asked.
"I'm right handed." Harry said.
"Very well, hold your arm out." Ollivander said and started taking measurements.
Harry had the impression that all the proportions of his body were measured by the tape measure, which worked on its own. When Ollivander thought he had enough information, he went into the shelves and got one wand after the other. Harry tried each wand he was given, but none seemed to work for him. He didn't really know what Mr Ollivander was looking for.
"Ah, a tricky customer, but don't worry, somewhere here there will be the right wand for you." Ollivander assured Harry.
Hagrid had sat down on a stool in a corner, waiting until Harry found his wand. After nearly an hour, Ollivander was bringing out the wands he had dubbed special combinations. Harry tried them all.
"Hm, try this one, holly and phoenix feather, nice and supple." He said, obviously tense if this could be the right wand.
Harry felt something, but it wasn't completely right.
"This one has a reaction I could feel, but it feels a bit off." Harry said.
Ollivander placed the wand to the side and got more boxes with wands for Harry to try. But even after two more hours, Harry was now really exhausted and annoyed; he didn't get a better reaction than with the wand Ollivander had separated.
"Hm, curious, very curious. I wonder. Mr Potter, do you by any chance have a familiar?" He asked. "You have now tried all the wands I have in my shop and only this one seems to respond to you. It is rare for a wizard to have to get a customized wand, but in some cases if a wizard has a rare magical animal as his familiar it can happen." Ollivander explained.
"Yes, I do. My familiar is a moon owl." Harry said.
"A moon owl, those are incredibly rare indeed!" Ollivander exclaimed astonished. "With all the conditions that have to be met for one to be born and then to come into her full powers. Mysterious birds that, while pure, are always changing their mood, just like the moon. Always female as well. I think to get you a fitting wand; we would have to see if a feather of your familiar would balance out this wand that seems to have some connection to you." Ollivander said.
Harry nodded and went outside. He concentrated and soon Hedwig flew down to him and landed on his arm. Her plumage had got even more silver now than it had been two days ago. Harry stroked her feathers.
"I need your help Hedwig. Mr Ollivander says that to find a wand for me, I'd need one of your feathers to balance out the only wand that responded somewhat to me. Would you mind donating one of your feathers for my wand, Hedwig?" Harry asked.
Hedwig hooted, shook herself and a single silver feather fell from her plumage.
"Thank you very much, Hedwig." Harry said and offered her one of the owl treats he always carried around with him in case he got mail. She happily accepted the treat.
Harry took the feather.
"Do you want to see how the wand will be made or would you prefer to fly around outside?" Harry asked her.
The hoot he got told him that she wanted to stay with him. Harry let her take place on his shoulder and went back inside. Mr Ollivander's eyes went wide seeing the owl.
"Really an incredible specimen your familiar. I've only ever seen a moon owl once in my life and that was at night when she flew over my head when I was out in a forest to collect wood for a wand from a tree that needs to be harvested under the full moon. Let's see if we can get this wand balanced out for you now." He said, taking the silver feather reverently.
He took both the wand and the feather and placed them on a workbench in the back of the shop. Harry could watch, but Hagrid was too big to get there. Ollivander swished his wand over the wand on the workbench in a complicated matter and it enlarged. At the handle an opening appeared and Ollivander carefully took out a red and gold feather. Harry recognized the feeling he got from the feather.
"Is that feather by any chance from Fawkes, the phoenix familiar of Professor Dumbledore?" He asked Ollivander.
"Indeed it is. You've met the headmaster's familiar then?" Ollivander asked.
"Yes, when I was at St. Mungo's and the healers found out something troubling with a splint that had been stuck in my scar for ten years since the attack on my parents' home, he healed the wound on my scar with his tears." Harry confirmed.
"Interesting, very interesting." Ollivander commented. "A lesser bond to a phoenix and a strong bond to a moon owl. We indeed can expect great things from you Mr Potter. Great things indeed." He said, returning to his work. He jabbed each feather with his wand and dripped a clear substance on both feathers, making them glow shortly.
"Tears of happiness of a fairy, a good binder for the feathers." He said absentmindedly.
Then he swished his wand again and the two feathers intertwined. He took the still enlarged wooden part of the wand and levitated the feathers inside. Then he moved his wand in a circle and the wand shrank back to its original size and the opening was no more.
"Try it now, Mr Potter." Ollivander said.
Harry waved the wand and had a fantastic feeling flowing threw him. Like a cooling breeze on a warm summer day. From the tip of his wand silver and blue sparks appeared, slowly falling down.
"Yes, yes that did the trick. A remarkable wand, Mr Potter. I was curious who would buy that specific wand, you see, as it was before; it was the brother to the wand that gave you that scar, yes a powerful wand, but now, this wand is absolutely unique. To require a wand with more than one core component means you'll become a very powerful wizard." Ollivander said.
Harry was glad that Hagrid didn't hear about the connection his wand had with Voldemort. It wouldn't do him any favours to have such a connection. If people knew they could get stupid ideas. They went back to the front and Harry happily told Hagrid that he now had his wand. He paid Ollivander eleven galleons for the wand and then left the shop with Hagrid.
At Hogwarts Albus Dumbledore sat in his office behind his desk reading a letter Ollivander the wandmaker had written him. The second wand had been sold to Harry Potter, but instead of simply choosing the boy, the wand had needed to be adjusted with the feather of Harry's familiar, a moon owl. This was indeed very fascinating. He had never before heard of a wand having to be adjusted. And for Harry to have won the allegiance of a moon owl was unheard of in a wizard of his age. Those owls were some of the most mysterious magical creatures that were categorized as light. Due to their rareness there weren't many documents handed down in time about their kind. The only thing that was known was that they needed to find a witch or wizard to create a familiar bond with before they reached a certain age. Nobody knew though how old that was.
Like phoenixes they had certain demands to their human partner. They never accepted those that had done evil deeds. Their powers were also mostly unknown. Some scripts spoke of them having the powers of the moon, others said they had healing powers like phoenixes, but in a different way. Nobody knew anything definite. The last recorded bonded moon owl dated back in 1705. There had been sightings of others, probably younger ones after that, but they obviously had turned into snowy owls after not finding a worthy witch or wizard. There were assumptions that the number of owls born as moon owls was about one in ten thousand owls. And only snowy owls could sire a moon owl. Perhaps because the heritage was in their genes. No one had ever been able to breed moon owls, they never hatched in captivity. It would be a great chance to study the habits of a bonded moon owl when Harry came to Hogwarts. He was glad that the boy had decided to accept his place here. He also knew that he would have to stay honest with Harry. Otherwise he would never win his trust.
On his birthday Harry woke up to bright sunshine and a small cake on his table in his room. There was a card wishing him a happy birthday from the crew of the Leaky Cauldron. Harry smiled. That was his first birthday cake. In the years prior the Dursleys had always ignored his birthday and as it was during the holidays, he hadn't been able to celebrate with his team-mates from the football team. He had got some cards from them, but never a cake. This one was made of yellow dough on the bottom, a layer of whipped cream with strawberries on top of it and on top it was sprinkled with chocolate chips. Harry took the fork he had got with the small round cake and tried a bit. It was delicious. The dough was vanilla flavoured he noticed and the cream sweet which went well with the still slightly sour strawberries. Harry enjoyed the cake and then went to take a shower.
Once he was done, he combed his wet hair, this was the only way his hair looked at least somewhat controlled. He knew in the afternoon his untameable hair would have won the fight against any attempt to get it in order, but if it at least held until his appointment was over, he would be satisfied. He donned a pair of black dress pants, the green silk shirt, black dress shoes and took a black robe to finish his outfit. He left his room and went down to eat breakfast. When he reached the pub, Tom smiled.
"Happy birthday, Harry." He said.
Harry felt very good to hear these words on his birthday and not only read them.
"Thanks, Tom. Can I have blueberry pancakes, chocolate milk and whip cream?" Harry asked.
"Sure, you're the birthday boy after all. When do you have your appointment today?" Tom asked.
"At ten. I don't know how long it'll take." Harry said when he sat down.
"Ah, take your time to get the details worked out. Always pays off in the long run." Tom replied.
"I will, thanks for the advice." Harry said.
"You're welcome, Harry." Tom said.
A little later the pancakes sat before Harry, freshly baked with a pot of cold chocolate milk and a bowl of whip cream. Harry started eating his breakfast, only a little bit filled from his birthday cake. He finished his meal and then walked towards the back door to get to Diagon Alley. Today Hagrid didn't have time to come in the morning, he had promised he would come by in the afternoon, but he knew the way to Gringotts and Tom knew where he was. He would start looking for him if he didn't return after a certain period of time. He tapped the stone that was the trigger three times with his wand and the archway opened for him. He looked around a bit and noticed that more people with children were now filling the alley. Obviously it was the time of year where the majority of families got the Hogwarts supplies.
Harry reached Gringotts and walked up to the teller with the shortest line. He briefly looked at the nameplate on the counter.
"Good morning, teller Gornuk. I'm here for my ten o'clock appointment with my account manager Corpnik." Harry said politely.
"Ah yes, Mr Potter. Please follow me." Gornuk said and led Harry through some corridors until they reached the door to an office. The door was made of polished oak wood and a golden plate was attached to it. "Wait a moment, Mr Potter." Gornuk said, knocked and entered the office. He came out shortly after. "Corpnik will now meet you."
"Thank you, Gornuk." Harry said and strode into the office in confident strides.
"Greetings, Mr Potter, may your business be profitable and your enemies cover at your feet." Corpnik greeted him.
"Greetings to you too, Corpnik, may your business always bring profit and your enemies not even know how they were defeated." Harry returned nodding his head towards the goblin.
"I see you have informed yourself about some of our customs. What did you want to discuss with me today?" Corpnik asked.
"First, please call me Harry; if we want to work on a profitable base for both of us, we need to have a basis of trust, Corpnik. Second, I would like to know what transactions there have been in the Potter accounts. I already know that my former guardians, my mother's muggle sister and her husband, embezzled the funds that they were given for my care. They only spent the bare minimum that couldn't be avoided on me. I want those funds back. How you do it, I don't care, but I know that the goblins always catch thieves. I also would like to know the advantages of getting a ledger for my vaults compared to the quarterly statements. While we are at the topic of embezzlement, do I get monies from those people using my name in their books and for their products? If not, I want that changed. They can either give me my share of the profits or pay a hefty fine for using my name without permission. And if you can, I'd like to get those Harry Potter books that Lockhart author wrote relabelled as fiction.
"Next are the current investments for my family. I'd like to see the profits those investments made over the last ten years and possibly adjust them. If you have suggestions for profitable investments that you couldn't realize until now because you need the permission of the owner of the vault to make them, I'd also like to hear your reasons for the investment plan. I want to see my parent's will, I know the original is always kept at Gringotts and the Ministry holds a copy. And lastly, I want to discuss with you the concept of introducing a credit card to the wizarding world. I'd gladly tell you everything I know about the system in the muggle world if we can come to an agreement about the profit-sharing." Harry listed his intentions for the meeting.
"Well structured and to the point, Harry. I like seeing a wizard who knows what he wants and what he is talking about. Especially someone as young as you are. Very well, let's start with some explanations. The ledger is a detailed statement of all possessions your family keeps at Gringotts and has outside in investments, real estates and living property. It is constantly updated which means you always can see how much you own. The monthly statements only contain the contents of your vaults in galleons, sickles and knuts. Objects are only listed in their overall number, not their kind.
"We will of course take care of recovering the money that was embezzled from you with interest. We are connected to the muggle banking system through a dummy bank that only exists in name. The people that use your name are separated in two groups. There is one manufacturer who produces toys that has organized that eight per cent of the profits are transferred to your trust vault for the usage of your name to advertise his products. Romanio Lockhart didn't do that and I'll gladly put one of Gringotts' barristers on the case.
"Your family investments mainly date back to 1978; that was the last time your grandfather Charlus changed the portfolio. Your father James was too busy with his schooling first and then the war against the Dark Lord to really take interest in investments. The investments are in both the wizarding and muggle worlds. I think your mother inspired your grandfather to invest the equivalent of ten thousand galleons in a company that was developing communication devices that work similar to the phones the muggles use at their homes but could be carried around easily. By now it has become a very profitable company and the original investment that got your grandfather twenty per cent of the shares of the company now has a value of sixty thousand, nine hundred and five galleons.
"The other investments are in the wizarding world. You hold five per cent of Flourish and Blott's, twelve per cent of Madam Malkin's, thirteen per cent of Quality for Quidditch, twenty one per cent of the Daily Prophet, fifty one per cent of a magical creature farm in Norfolk, sixty three per cent in a vineyard with attached winery in southern France, and lastly you hold eighty nine per cent in a professional Quidditch training facility in Canada. All those investments are doing well, especially the Quidditch facility. The vineyard had a bad harvest three years ago, but they recovered the following year by taking more protective measures against insects and frost in spring. I have three more businesses that would be interesting to invest in.
"First you should know that your grandfather, and his father before him, always used the same investment strategy. He looked for young enterprises that promised to become successful in a few years' time. He sponsored the founders of the enterprises and got shares in exchange. He always kept involved in the business ideas and offered advice if necessary. The last part will probably be a bit early for you, but once you finished school I'm sure you would also do well with this strategy. All the investments you hold currently were created the way I described. I have to say your great-grandfather Henry proved a really good nose when he bought the run-down Quidditch facility from the founder. He was a very enthusiastic wizard who loved playing Quidditch, but he had no idea of how to run a business.
Your great-grandfather took over the management for three years and hired competent people to run it full-time. Trainers for the practical part and managers for the economic part. After five years the facility was profitable and after ten years it had turned into a cash cow to use the muggle term. The eleven per cent that you don't own are split among senior workers of the facility that got them for their commitment to the facility in the beginning when times were hard and they had a lot of convincing to do to get professional teams to use their training facilities during the year and to get camps for children and teenagers set up." Corpnik described how the most successful investment of the Potters had started off.
Harry was very impressed how good at doing business his great-grandfather had been. He hoped he would be able to follow in his footsteps. Well, he had one idea already. He would see how it worked out.
"The three investments I want to suggest are an apothecary in a side alley of Diagon Alley whose owner is a very competent witch and on her way to gain her mastery in potions. At the moment she only sells ingredients of high quality and books that are a key to becoming a successful brewer. There is a reason why Slytherin house produces the best brewers besides their head of house being a bit biased against the other houses after all. She presented us her business plan and I checked it thoroughly. As soon as she has her mastery, which will probably be in about two years at most, she will start selling potions that the normal witch or wizard needs regularly, like cough potions, pepper-up potions, headache potions and the like in her shop. Those potions, while high quality, will be reasonably priced. At the side she will take special orders that are only needed for special uses and prepare them for much higher prices. As good Potions Masters are really rare in Great Britain she won't have to fear much competition in that field and as an addition to her normal range of products it works nicely I think.
"At the moment her shop is an insider tip. Most buy their equipment in Jugg's & Sligger, the big apothecary in Diagon Alley, but we estimate a shift of the customers to Miss Ranamis' shop of about twenty per cent over the next four years. If you agree I would invest six thousand galleons into her business, which would give you about thirty per cent of the shares." Corpnik closed his first presentation and looked at Harry expectantly.
Harry thought about what Corpnik had said. He thought back to the impression of the shop he had got when he had bought his ingredients there. It had a very professional outlook and Miss Ranamis had been really helpful with pointing out the two additional books that would help greatly in developing his skills in brewing. If she reached her mastery and was allowed to branch out from selling simple ingredients she would manage to make good profit. On top there was an empty store next door, which allowed for expansion if everything worked out like it should. So the investment wouldn't be limited to the current storage space the shop had.
"I know the shop and have met Miss Ranamis when I got my potions supplies. Rubeus Hagrid showed me the shop. I liked the professionalism she showed and the ratio between quality and prices of her goods. I agree with that investment, especially as the location still holds potential for expansion once she has her mastery." Harry said.
Corpnik noted the agreement.
He presented him two other ideas, one Harry approved of, the other he didn't. While that enterprise might have been profitable, he didn't like their idea of having squibs do the work for low wages while the owners mostly did the marketing. In his experience enterprises that were led by the founders who directly worked to build up their business were more successful than those where the owners just were the face of the enterprise and others made the important decisions as the owners didn't know their own products. Corpnik noted both. Then he took out the will of his parents.
It was more or less a standard will. In case one of them died the other one would get custody of him, in case both died there was a list of people who could take custody. The top five he knew were not available as Sirius Black was in Azkaban, Remus Lupin was a werewolf and Peter Pettigrew was either dead or the traitor. Next were Frank and Alice Longbottom, who had been tortured to insanity. The last one he didn't know about, he hadn't heard yet about somebody called Dorcas Meadowes.
He was to inherit all of their possessions, and be given the option of emancipation at fourteen if he so chose. Well, that was interesting. Even if he didn't get along with his future guardian he could get out once he turned fourteen. As soon as he turned sixteen he would inherit his father's title of Earl of Ceredigion, which was honoured in both the muggle and wizarding world.
He put the will down and took a few calming breaths. He had been right; they had tried to make sure he was well taken care of. But it seemed things didn't work out like they planned and Dumbledore put his survival higher than his happiness or simply ran out of options once things had calmed down. His best chance would probably be to see if Sirius Black was guilty or not. Even if his parents had trusted Remus Lupin, there was a huge prejudice against werewolves. He couldn't see him getting custody. Perhaps he should make contact. He would be a fountain of stories about his father and perhaps a few about his mother.
"Considering the investments and the gold in both your family and trust vault, you have a net value of 5.742.307 galleons. About 800.000 are in galleons, sickles and knuts. On average the profits the investments make each year come up to about 40.000 galleons. Ninety per cent are reinvested in the businesses; the remaining ten per cent go to the family vault. You are not the wealthiest wizard in Great Britain but really well to do. The real estates have a value of totally 2.530.500 galleons, with the house in Godric's Hollow being not sellable as it was made a national monument. Potter Manor in Ceredigion needs a few repairs and a power-boost from you for the wards, then it is liveable. The house in Spain is alright and is rented out for wizarding tourists regularly and makes a profit every year. The same holds true for the houses in France and Italy. The hotel in the Dominican Republic is doing well as well. The flat in New York is rented out on a yearly base." Corpnik explained.
Harry nodded. He would have enough choices for a living place once he was of age. He would probably move into the Manor. What reason would somebody have to keep a manor and not live in it?
"Alright. That's all I need to know about my finances for now. I will take the ledger to keep updated. Now I think we need to discuss the possibilities a credit card system could offer your bank." Harry said.
"Yes, Griphook mentioned a few outlines and I'm very interested to learn how that system works. We have a standard policy regarding profit-sharing. I will listen to your suggestion and if I think Gringotts could profit from taking over the system, you'll be given a share of five per cent of the profit." Corpnik said.
"Fifteen per cent." He demanded.
"Harry, five per cent is more than generous for you only delivering the idea." Corpnik said.
"I'm not only delivering the idea, I'm giving you the detailed working process of the system. The whole required equipment, the means how you can convince the shops to accept payment with the new credit card and even my name for marketing the product if you do it. I think fifteen per cent is more than generous of me." Harry said.
Corpnik was surprised. Normally wizards didn't bother bargaining with goblins, they thought it to be under their station. But Harry was not giving an inch. He had leeway in the negotiations from the board. Up to fifteen per cent he could accept. But he would try to get Harry down a bit. Oh how long had it been that he had the pleasure of a good bargain.
"Perhaps you are right, but I can't agree to that share. I don't know yet if what you are promising to deliver is worth it. Your offer to promote the credit card system has a certain value as the Potter name and your name especially have a great pull to people. I'll agree to eight per cent." Corpnik said.
"I'll give you an incentive to easier decide. I'll agree to ten per cent of the profit if you make less than five thousand galleons profit with the new system in the starting phase of six months after the marketing offence has started. You'll place an advertisement in the Daily Prophet and all other daily publications and send out pamphlets to all wizarding households that have accounts here at Gringotts. Additionally I'll get you the addresses of all the muggleborns that graduated in the last twenty years as they'll probably be your most probable customers. If you make more than five thousand galleons profit, I'll get my fifteen per cent." Harry said confidently.
Corpnik grinned. That was a deal the board would gladly accept. Less than they would at most have accepted in case the profit wasn't as high as they hoped and the limit if the system worked out well and then Harry had definitely earned his share. Generally new products needed a longer starting period than six months to become profitable, so the probability that they would make five thousand galleons profit was low. And having Harry Potter personally promote their product would make fantastic publicity.
"Deal." He said, holding out his hand for Harry to shake, which he did.
They then went over the standard contract that Gringotts made with their partners and Harry read it very carefully. He argued about a few passages with Corpnik which were altered to Harry's liking, the clause they had bargained about was inserted and then both of them signed in blood, making the contract magically binding for both sides. The contract glowed golden and two copies were produced. One was for Harry and one went directly to the goblin archives. The original Corpnik would take to the board and present the deal he had made with the young Potter heir.
"Okay, now I think it's your turn to give me the details." Corpnik said.
Harry nodded and opened the book bag he had from Flourish and Blotts and pulled a notebook out. He opened it and showed Corpnik the diagrams and explanations of the muggle credit card system, the fee the issuing bank got and what the shops got.
"In the muggle world a percentage that doesn't exceed a certain amount of money is added to the price for the bought goods. Normally three per cent. Like if you bought clothes for one hundred pounds you're charged one hundred and three pounds. Of the additional three pounds two pounds go to the bank, the other pound is for the shop. Now Gringotts operates in all European Countries, you have five branches in America, two in Canada, two in Australia and four spread over Asia." Harry surprised Corpnik with his accurate knowledge. "By my estimation the wizarding population of the world is about thirty million witches and wizards. Now if we assume of them forty per cent are children, eighteen million remain. Of those eighteen million Gringotts has probably about sixty per cent as customers, makes ten million eight hundred thousand. Now if only fifty per cent, meaning five million four hundred thousand, accept the credit card as a form of normal payment as it reduces the problems with carrying around great amounts of gold, can be made safe from abuse of others who might have access to the vault by keying it to your wand or blood, can be seen as a symbol of status in society, because you only give out those cards to those who can settle their bills and it makes paying faster, you have a great base to get the system accepted in the wizarding world. In the muggle world the creators of the system also noticed that many people don't look that closely to how much they buy if they pay with the card as they don't see the money corporeally before them.
"Now I'll use an easy example for an event that comes up every year in August. Shopping for school supplies. The average Hogwarts student needs to invest about fifty galleons for the starting equipment in basic form, about a hundred galleons if you prefer higher quality. In the following years the amount is reduced as things like a wand, a trunk and so on are already there. Hogwarts has about forty students that start this year, makes, if we settle for a middle amount of money that is spent on the children of seventy five galleons three thousand galleons would be spent. With two per cent profit for Gringotts that are already sixty galleons only for one year of students, only in Great Britain. Multiply that with the higher numbers of children in other countries and you see why I'm more than sure that you'll easily earn the five thousand galleons in six months." Harry stated.
"Now think five million customers, buying their supplies with credit cards all over the world, a system that the muggleborns are already used to from their parents. Even if they only spend one hundred galleons in six months, which they won't do but spend more, you'd earn two galleons from each of them, summing up at ten million galleons. Take away twenty per cent for maintenance and personnel and you still have eight million galleons left. I'm really sure I've earned my fifteen per cent." Harry said.
Corpnik couldn't help it but laugh loudly.
"You, Harry, could have been a goblin. That was one of the most devious acts anybody has pulled over me for some decades. I definitely underestimated you. Henry would have loved the way how you think. He was the most devious businessman I ever had the honour of knowing. Indeed, if we get it done the way you say and I don't see why not, we'll earn a lot of gold together. Do you have other ideas that are as profitable as this one?" He asked now very interested what else the boy could think of.
Honestly, the most he had expected to get was a vague idea of a muggle system how to pay easier. They would have had to investigate how to make it work in the wizarding world and that would have taken time. But with the information Harry had provided they would be able to start at once and set everything up, work out the magic to coordinate everything and then advertise the new product. Harry definitely had a lot of Henry Potter's skill in business deals. It would be very interesting to see the boy grow. There was so much potential that he could see.
"An extension to this once the system is established in society. Offer accounts for students of magical schools with an included credit card free of the percentile fee as long as they attend school. The card itself can be a fixed starting fee like five galleons. While you won't make much profit while the students are at school they'll be used to using the credit card for their purchases. And once they leave school the normal procedure starts and they won't think anything strange about it. You bind customers early on and to be honest, the students at Hogwarts mostly spend their money in Hogsmeade and not much more as there aren't many possibilities for it. If they spend fifty galleons a year while they are at school that's it normally and it includes the wealthier students. So you'd not get one galleon a year from each student, but much more once they graduate. But there still are the normal fees for the upkeep of the vaults. It's an investment in future profit." Harry said.
"A very interesting extension. Yes, I'm convinced we'll make much gold together in the future, Harry." Corpnik said contently. This boy was really valuable and he was his account manager, meaning he'd get a good bit of gold himself for getting the ideas that would bring Gringotts much gold in the future.
In the afternoon Harry was visited by Hagrid and he got a chocolate cake with green writing, which Hagrid had baked himself for Harry and a book on charms for brooms from him.
"Thought with how yer interested in learning an' Quidditch, you'd like it." He said.
"Thank you, Hagrid." Harry said happily. He wasn't really used to people giving him birthday presents.
Harry told Hagrid a bit about his appointment with Gringotts, Hagrid got a good laugh at hearing he had made Corpnik laugh out loud over the trick Harry had pulled, he told him about the cake he got in the morning from the Leaky Cauldron team and a few people he had watched when he went back from Gringotts.
"There was this one blond boy who seemed to have swallowed a lemon. But his father didn't seem to be any better. And they looked disdainfully at the students who looked like muggleborns to me." Harry said.
"Ah, could've been the Malfoys. Nasty business 'em. Lucius Malfoy is a big fish, has contacts to the Minister, but was thought ter have been with You-Know-Who. Bought himself free. Claimed ter have been under imperius. Don' know if that's true. He's nasty 'nough to have done it willingly. But he's got gold, so many don' dare crossing 'im. His son should be the age to start Hogwarts now." Hagrid said.
"Do you know anything about the Zabinis?" He asked.
"Ah, yes, Black Widow Elladora." Hagrid said. "She's been married six times now, but some'ow 'er husbands always die soon. Could have somethin' ter do with that after her firs' one died in an accident, with whom she'd had her son, she looked for rich old men. Couldn' handle the stress havin' a beautiful young wife many say. Others tell she's killed 'em, but nothin' could ever be proven." Hagrid told him. "Did you meet 'em?"
"Yes, when I got my robes at Madam Malkin's Blaize Zabini was also fitted for his. We talked a bit. I got the impression that while he was a bit arrogant, I'd get along with him well enough. He seems to be at least intelligent enough to not simply judge on rumours but to get more information about something." Harry said.
"Yes, that fits their personality. The Zabinis have been Slytherins for generations. But I didn' hear about them being dark. Still high stuck on believing in pureblood supremacy." Hagrid informed Harry.
Harry decided to ask a question that had bothered him for some time.
"Hagrid, would you be mad if I was sorted into Slytherin? I think I'll go to Ravenclaw, but some of my character traits fit Slytherin." Most of them actually, but he wouldn't actually admit that to anybody.
"Nah, Harry. I know you. Yer a good kid. And nobody with a moon owl as a familiar could ever go dark. Hedwig wouldn't allow it." He said.
Harry was relieved to hear that. While he normally didn't give much on the opinions of people, he didn't want to lose Hagrid's friendship. The gentle giant of a man had given up a lot of his time to look after him while he was staying here at the Leaky Cauldron and had been a great guide to learn his way around. While Harry had noticed that he was a bit biased against Slytherins he also seemed to be pretty knowledgeable about some families. He would have to find out what of the general talk was true and what exaggerated, but it was part of the complete picture.
Later Hagrid said good bye as he had an errand for Dumbledore to run at Gringotts.
So that was the last chapter before the Hogwarts part starts. Did you like my idea of Harry outsmarting his goblin account manager? Till next time.