Thanks for Reading.
As always: Disclaimer!
So here it is.
– CHAPTER FOUR –
Impossibly Large Pockets
The loud boom echoed again throughout the shack and this time Dudley awoke. Bella groaned and quickly grabbed hold of her brother's arm. She snatched the letter from him and bent to pick hers off the floor. She hated that they were yet again interrupted while trying to read the letters, but it would have to wait now that their cousin was awake. Her grip was so tight that her knuckles were slowly turning white, and she tucked the two letters down the back of her jeans, in the waistband. It was how she had always managed to smuggle things around the Dursley's house since she was very little, as she wore Dudley's old clothes which were even larger on her than they were on her brother.
'Where's the cannon?' Dudley asked stupidly, and Bella rolled her eyes. Harry idly thought that he was either half-asleep or stupid, but quickly decided on both as the boom echoed again.
The sound of Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia thundering down the stairs behind them filled their ears, and Bella could see out of the corner of her eye that her Aunt and Uncle were both as pale as ghosts.
'Who's there?' Uncle Vernon asked, unusually frail for him. 'I warn you – I'm armed!'
Harry turned his head to see that Uncle Vernon was indeed armed with a long rifle. Then there was a pause.
Harry's head snapped back around just in time to see the door fall to the ground. The door came to the floor with a deafening crash and then only a shadow could be seen of a giant figure stepping through the doorway. Dudley made a squeaking noise and fell over the back of the couch as a pair of black beetle eyes opened. Bella stopped shivering completely and stood as still as a statue, while Harry just gaped at the man that now stood before them.
His face was almost completely hidden by a long tangled beard and shaggy hair. He was wearing some sort of large coats, which was an odd beige colour and had probably hundreds of pockets. The giant man bent down to pick up the door, and fitted it easily back into its frame. Harry noted then, that the giant man could barely stand up straight in the house. The giant man turned back to them all then.
'Couldn't make us a cup o' tea, could yeh? It's not been an easy journey….' The giant said. Bella let out a little gasp and Harry tore his eyes away from the giant as she stepped behind the fireplace. Harry followed her, using the time that the giant used to shake his head to get rid of some of the water. Harry thought he looked a little like a dog when he did it, but his thought didn't last long. It was a small gap where the wall stuck out, and the two of them barely fit, but it would have to do.
The giant strode over to the couch where Dudley was cowering behind the couch who then ran to hide behind his mother, who herself was hiding behind Uncle Vernon. He took a seat on the lumpy sofa and looked over at the Dursley's.
'An' here's Harry!' said the giant. His voice was loud and excited, and Bella's grip on his arm tightened once again. But he wasn't looking at Harry at all. He was looking at Dudley. 'Where's yeh sister?' he asked him, and Bella's eyes widened.
'I-i-I'm not Harry,' he stuttered and looked over to where the twins were hiding. Harry took a deep breath and stepped out of the dark corner.
'I am Harry' he muttered quietly, and the giant turned to face him. The giant just sighed and smiled kindly.
'Of course you are.' He said. 'Las' time I saw you, you was only a baby. Yeh look a lot like yer dad, but yeh've got yer mum's eyes.' He paused and his eyes crinkled. 'Where's yeh sister?'
Bella stepped forward, so she was out of the darkness and smiled shyly at the giant.
'I'm Bella,' she said, blushing. The giant smiled and opened his mouth to speak only to be interrupted when Uncle Vernon made a funny rasping noise.
'I demand you leave at once, sir!' he said. 'You are breaking and entering!'
'Ah shut up Dursley, yeh great prune,' said the giant. He reached over the back of the sofa and jerked the gun out of Uncle Vernon's hands, bent it into a knot as easily as if it had been made out of rubber, and threw it into a corner of the room. Uncle Vernon made another funny noise and it sounded like a mouse being squished.
'So,' the giant said, turning his back to the Dursley's. 'A very happy birthday to the two of yeh, Harry and Bella. Got sommat for yeh here – I mighta sat on it at some point, but I imagin it'll taste fine just the same.' The giant then rummaged around in his impossibly large pockets for something before grinning and pulling out a fairly large white box tied with a green ribbon. He handed it over in the direction of the Potter twins and Harry took it, smiling kindly. He opened it and both the twins smiles exploded as they witnessed what they had just been given.
For inside the package was a large chocolate cake with the words Happy Birthday Bella & Harry written on top in green icing.
Bella looked up at the giant and smiled. 'Thank you,' she said sweetly, but then her brow furrowed. 'But who are you?'
The giant man chuckled.
'True, I haven't introduced meself. Rubeus Hagrid, Keeper of Keys and Grounds at Hogwarts. But everyone calls meh Hagrid.'
He held out one enormous hand and Harry shook it carefully, his whole arm moving.
'So how about that tea then 'eh?' Hagrid said in his strong accent and looked over at the fireplace. He shook his head laughing quietly and pointed a bright pink umbrella at the stone archway and muttered a few words. It was then that a small fire roared to life and warmth started to consume Bella. She smiled gratefully, closing her eyes to bask in the warmth before going to sit opposite Hagrid on an old rickety chair. She watched as he pulled out a copper kettle, sausages, a poker, several mugs, a teapot and several squashed teabags and got to making some tea. Soon after the whole shack was filled with the smell of sizzling sausages, and it made Bella's stomach rumble.
Nobody said anything while the giant worked, but Dudley could help but fidget when he smelt everything.
'Don't take anything he gives you.' Uncle Vernon whispered harshly at his son. The giant just chuckled darkly.
'Yer great puddin' of a son don' need fattenin' any more, Dursley, don' worry.'
He passed the sausages to Harry and Bella who were so hungry, that they doubted they had ever tasted anything so delicious in their lives.
After she finished her food Bella finally broke the silence.
'I'm sorry, but we still don't know who you are,' she said kindly, smiling at him grateful for the food.
'Call me Hagrid, everyone does,' said the giant. 'An' like I told yeh, I'm Keeper of Keys at Hogwarts – yeh'll know all about Hogwarts, o' course.'
'Er - no,' Harry said shaking his head.
Hagrid just opened and closed his mouth like a fish.
'Sorry,' Harry whispered and both he and Bella looked down at the floor.
'Sorry?' Hagrid barked and the twins jumped in their seats. 'It's them as should be sorry! I knew yeh weren't gettin' yer letters but I never thought yeh wouldn't even know abou' Hogwarts, fer cryin' out loud! Did yeh never wonder where yer parents leanrt it all?'
'All what?' Bella said.
'ALL WHAT?' Hagrid thundered, and the Dursley's all jumped. 'Do yer mean ter tell me,' he all but growled. '-that these two – neither of them! – knows nothin' abou' – about ANYTHING?'
Harry opened his mouth to speak, but Bella grabbed hold of his wrist shaking her head.
'DURSLEY!' Hagrid boomed. 'They know nothin' about my world. Our world. Their PARENT'S world.'
'What world?' Bella asked, curious.
Uncle Vernon muttered something under his breath and Hagrid just stared at Bella and Harry.
'Yeh must know about yer mum and dad,' he said. 'I mean they're famous. You're both famous.'
Bella's brow crinkled. Confusion filled both of their faces and Harry said 'What? My – my mum and dad weren't famous, were they?'
Hagrid's beetle eyes widened. 'Yeh – Yeh don' know…. Yeh don' know….' He said as he ran his hands through his hair, fixing Harry with a bewildered stare.
Uncle Vernon suddenly found his voice.
'Stop right there, sir! I forbid you to tell them anything!'
Hagrid then turned his attention onto Mr Dursley who, with one single look from the giant, began to almost quiver where he stood. Bella almosr felt bad for her Uncle, but she couldn't help but think that as long as the giant didn't hurt him, he deserved being a little scared. Harry, on the other hand, wished he were the giant.
'You never told them?' Hagrid said in a raised voice. 'Never told them what was in the letter Dumbledore left fer them? I was there! I saw Dumbledore leave it, Dursley! An' you've kept it from them all these years?'
'Kept what from us?' Harry asked, louder than he would speak normally, as he leapt up from his seat.
Hagrid turned back to the twins, as Bella stood from her seat to stand in front of the giant man. 'STOP I FORBID YOU,' Uncle Vernon screeched but Hagrid continued anyway.
'Yer wizards,' he said with a gleam in his eye.
Aunt Petunia gasped in horror.
'We're what…?' both the twins asked in confusion. Surely it had to be some sort of mistake or practical joke. There were no such thing as wizards.
'Wizards,' he repeated with a big grin. There was no going back now. 'well technically yer a witch Bella, but it's all the same.' He sat back on the sofa then, filling up three-quarters of it on his own. 'It'll make more sense when yeh read both yer letters.'
Bella nodded and walked over to where she had dropped the two faded envelopes with emerald green writing and picked them up. Uncle Vernon exploded when he saw that not only did Harry have one, but that Bella did to.
'Where did YOU get THAT?' he screamed, with the words you and that coming out with probably more venom than he should have put in his voice. Hagrid glared at him for speaking to his niece in such a way, but Bella was used to it.
'I got it the first day, when Harry got his first letter,' she paused then for dramatic effect and then continued. '…I'm sorry Uncle Vernon, did you not want me to have it?'
Harry could barely keep in his laughter, as he knew what she was doing. If there was one thing she was good at it was playing the innocent card. Although she was a terrible liar and actress, she could charm the pants off of anyone with her sweet routine.
She passed Harry's letter to him, while Uncle Vernon just gasped for air while colour returned to his face. He started to blush an odd pink colour and Bella smirked from beneath her hair.
They both opened their letters and read:
HOGWARTS SCHOOL OF WITCHCRAFT AND WIZARDRY
Headmaster: Albus Dumbledore
(Order of Merlin, First Class, Grand Sorc., Chf. Warlock
Supreme Mugwump, International Confed. of Wizards)
Dear Mr Potter/Miss Potter,
We are pleased to inform you that you have a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Please find the enclosed list of all necessary books and equipment.
Term will begin on September 1st. We await your owl by no later than 31st July.
Harry and Bella looked over to the others letter after they had finished reading their own letter and saw the exact same thing written but with the others name at the top. Questions swelled within the pair of them, and they couldn't decide what to ask first. After a few minutes of reading and re-reading their letters Bella finally spoke.
'What does it mean, they await my owl?' she said, tilting her head slightly her eyebrows furrowing. Hagrid jumped with a star then, knocking the sofa backwards in his rush to reach a small pocket inside his coat. He pulled out an owl, who was very much alive and hooting at hi in displeasure Bella gasped and reached forward to try and touch it, only to have it jump onto her outstretched am. She smiled and stroked his feathers, laughing slightly as he gave her an affectionate nip on her cheek. Harry too stroked the bird with a smile, but watched Hagrid as he wrote a letter on a small slip of paper. He was muttering what he was writing as he wrote it down, and harry could barely hear what was said.
Dear Mr Dumbledore,
Made sure they read their letters. Taking them to buy their things tomorrow.
Weather's horrible. Hope you are well.
Hagrid then rolled up the note and gave it to the owl, who clamped it in his beak and flew out into the storm. Hagrid sat back down then and stroked his bushy beard saying 'Now, where was I?'
'They're not going.' Uncle Vernon said almost sternly then. Everyone looked at him then, Harry and Bella had almost forgotten he was even there. Hagrid just grunted.
'I'd like to see a Muggle like yerself try to stop him,' he said.
'A what?' Harry asked.
'We swore when we took them in we'd put a stop to all that madness,' said Uncle Vernon, 'swore we'd stamp t out of him!'
'You knew?' Harry blurted then. Bella's eyes widened. She had not considered that perhaps the Dursley's knew what they were, although it did make sense when she thought about it. After all, they had been desperate in their attempts to take the letters away.
'Knew!' shrieked Aunt Petunia. 'Knew! Of course we knew!' How could you not with my perfect sister being who she was. We have a witch in the family, isn't it wonderful?' She scoffed then, rolling her eyes and stepping towards the twins. 'I was the only one to see her for who she was – a freak! But oh no, my parents were so proud to have a witch for a daughter. It was always Lily this and Lily that. And then she met that Potter, and they had you two and I knew that you'd both be just the same, just as well – abnormal. Oh and then, of course, she went and got herself blown up! And we got landed with you two!'
BLOWN UP?' Bella shouted, pushing past rry and storming forward to stand in front of the Dursley's. 'BLOWN UP?' she screeched again. 'YOU SAID OUR PARENTS DIED IN A CAR CRASH!'
Harry placed a hand on her shoulder and sighed. Normally he was t hot headed one, but when it came to any information about their parents Bella jumped into action.
'A CAR CRASH!' Hagrid echoed. 'A car crash kill Lily and James Potter! It's an outrage, a scandal! Harry and Bella Potter not knowin' their own story when every kid in our world knows their names!'
'But why? What happened?' Harry asked urgently before his sister could explode again.
The anger faded from Hagrid's face then, and he actually looked nervous.
'I never expected yeh both to know so little 'bout our world,' he said in a completely calm voice, before shooting a glare at the Dursley's.
He paused, as if he were deciding if he were going to regret his decision to tell them anything.
'It all starts, I suppose, with a man called – well I don' like dayin' the name if I can help it. No one does.'
'Who?' Bella said, but Hagrid just continued as if he had never heard them.
'But you was only babies, an' you lived. I took yeh both from the ruined house myself with a few other Professors, on Dumbledore's orders. Brought yeh ter this lot…'
'Who?' Bella asked louder, wanting to know who killed her parents.
'Huh?' Hagrid said, as if he had been lost in a deep thought. 'Oh – well his name was Vol –' he stopped mid word and frowned. 'His name was Vol –' he stopped again and a look of pain flashed across his face. Then in a small whisper he said 'Voldemort.'
Uncle Vernon let out a barking laugh. 'What a load of old tosh' he said still laughing. 'Now you listen here, I accept that there are some strange things about you two but the world is better off without your parents in it. The got what they asked for by mixing it up with those wizarding types-' but he wasn't allowed to finish.
Harry was too busy holding back his screaming sister, whose anger was probably parallel to his own and the giant man's. Harry just didn't want her to do something she would regret later. The candles on the mantel piece began to hover then, each turning on their side towards the Dursley's and dripping wax onto the floor. Dudley screamed and ran to hide in the corner of the room, while Mrs Dursley wrapped her arms around him to cower with him. Uncle Vernon on the other hand just turned bright red and began to back up. Hagrid noticed and pulled out a bright pink umbrella. He stepped in front of Mr Dursley and muttered something under his breath. The candles went out and then he turned. He towered over Mr Dursley and spoke in a dark tone. 'I'm warning you Dursley – I'm warning you – one more word…' He fell silent and Hagrid breathed heavily
Harry knew it would be best to start asking questions again in order to keep his sister from repeating what she had just done.
'What happend to Vol-' Hagrid's gaze snapped to them and he broke off mid sentence.
'You-Know-Who,' Hagrid said, with wide eyes. 'Well he disappeared. Some say he died, but that's codswallop in my opinion. No I reckon he's still out there. But one things fer sure, something about you two stopped him that night. That's why everybody knows yer names, and that's why yer both have the exact same scar.'
Harry and Bella looked to each other then. They had often wondered why they had lightning bolt scars in the exact same places, and now they knew.
'To be honest, I think he's still out there somewhere. Too weak to carry on, bidin' his time. People who were on his side came bac k ter ours. Some of 'em cane outta trances. Xon' reckon they could've done if he was comin' back.
'Why not?' Bella asked.
'Gulpin' gargoyles, Bella, people are still scared. Terrible things happened when he was at large. It was dark days. Didn't know who ter trust, didn't get friendly with strange witches or wizards. He was takin' over, but o' course some stood up to him – like Dumbledore and yer parents. And he killed 'em. Reckon Dumbledore's the only one You-Know-Who was afraid of, he didn' dare try takin' the school.'
He paused then, and looked up at Harry and Bella with tears in his eyes.
'Now, yer mum an' dad were as good a witch an' wizard as I ever knew. Head Boy an' Girl at Hogwarts in their day! Suppose the myst'ry is why You-Know-Who never tried to get 'em on his side before he….' He paused again and ran his hands through his beard.
'Maybe he thought he could persuade 'em to give you two up….. maybe he just wanted 'em outta the way…..All anyone knows is that he turned up in Godric's Hollow, the village where yer were all living, on Hallowe'en ten years ago. Yer were both just one year old. He came ter yer house an' – an' –'
He blew his nose on a dirty hankercheif that he pulled out of one of the pockets before stuffing it up his sleeve.
'Sorry, it's just so sad.'
Bella wiped her eyes inconspicuously, but Harry noticed and pulled her into a small hug. He too was becoming a bit teary, but was managing to keep it in check.
'You-Know-Who killed 'em,' Hagrid continued. 'An' then – an' this is the real myst'ry of the thing – he tried to kill yer both too. Wanted ter make a clean job of it, I suppose, or maybe he just liked killin' by then. But he couldn't do it. That cut on yer foreheads, that aint no ordinary cut. A mark like them only comes from being hit with a curse an' an evil curse at that. It took out most of yer house, but not you two. That's what makes yeh two so famous – no one's ever survived before. He has killed some o' the best witches and wizards of the age – the McKinnons, the Bones, the Prewetts – an' you was only a baby….' He trailed off and wiped his eyes again.
Harry thought about what he had learned for a minutes and then said 'Hagrid, I think you've made a mistake. We can't be wizards…'
Hagrid chuckled. 'Not wizard's 'eh? Never made anything happen when you were angry or scared?'
Harry thought back to the snake at the zoo, and Bella blushed.
'Yeah the candles were you Bella, no doubt in meh mind that yer a witch and wizard. Yer going to be right famous at Hogwarts.'
Uncle Vernon spoke again. 'Haven't I told you they aren't going! They are going to Stonewall High and they will be grateful for it. I've read those letters and they need all sorts of rubbish – spell books and wands and –'
'If they want ter go, then a Muggle like yerself won't stop them.' Hagrid said sternly. 'They'll be with youngsters of his own sort and they'll be under the greatest Headmaster Hogwarts has ever seen, Albus Dumbled-'
'I WILL NOT PAY TO HAVE SOME CRACKPOT OLD FOOL TEACH HIM MAGIC TRICKS!' yelled Uncle Vernon and Hagrid grabbed his umbrella again. He pressed it against Uncle Vernon's small amount of neck and spoke in a dark tone.
'NEVER – INSULT – ALBUS – DUMBLEDORE – IN – FRONT – OF – ME!' he all but roared.
He then pointed his umbrella at Dudley, who in a violet flash, grew a curly pigs tail. Uncle Vernon roared. Aunt Petunia fainted. Dudley clapped his hands over his bottom and started howling. Harry and Bella started laughing so hard they had tears in their eyes. The Dursley's finally fled the room, leaving the Potter twins with the giant man.
They turned to him, their laughter subsiding and Hagrid said to them 'I shouldn'ta lost me temper, am' I'd be grateful if yer didn't mention to anyone outside o' here what happened I'm technically not meant to do magic.'
Hagrid pulled out a gold pocketwatch then and screwed up his eyes to look at the tiny numbers engraved on its face.
'We'd best be off, lots ta do tomorrow. Gotta get up town an' get all yer books.' Hagrid shrug off his coat then and wrapped it around the twins. Bella grabbed their bag quickly and they followed him out into the storm.
'Don' mind if it wriggles a bit, I think I lost a couple of dormice in one o' the pockets.'
They followed the giant until he stopped in front of an old motorbike.
Bella and Harry just smiled.