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What will the Dursleys say? - one shot

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Old September 5th, 2009, 4:49 pm
IzzardCookie  Undisclosed.gif IzzardCookie is offline
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What will the Dursleys say? - one shot

Author's Note: Not much to say about this one, except it's a one shot I wrote a while ago. Chele.

What Will the Dursleys Say?

The spacious kitchen was spotless, as always. Maybe it was that his mother had the annoying tradition of dropping in without notice that made Victoria keep the house so clean, maybe it was just routine since their daughter had been born. Evelyn had the habit as a young child of trying to eat everything she came in contact with, so it became second nature to clean up as quickly as possible. Now, even as their daughter progressed towards her twelfth birthday that October, the house was still kept cleaner than a hospital.

Looking through the kitchen window as he dropped the breakfast things into the dishwasher, he saw Evelyn playing with the next door neighbour’s cat. He hated the mangy thing; it’s fur matted and coming out in places. The two times it had managed to sneak its way into their house, it had left hairs everywhere… and it had happened to be one of those days his mother had dropped in. Even now, he was sure his mother thought Victoria a sloppy housewife.

Watching his beautiful daughter, he was filled once again with the relief that she had inherited her mother’s looks and physique. It wasn’t that he disliked his own, being bulky was ok for a man, but he knew better than most how cruel children could be about people who fell into the category of the ‘F’ word. He didn’t want that for his daughter. Her blonde ringlets shone in the early morning sun, her dark brown eyes always fascinating him at how they were the stark contrast of everything else about her, which was fair and light. He couldn’t be more proud of his gorgeous little girl.

Relaxing back into his chair at the kitchen table, he picked up the paper and opened it, his small eyes scanning the first few pages for anything of special note before he flicked systematically to the sports section. He groaned; England had lost the Ashes again. Not surprising really, they never seemed to win at anything these days as far as he could see. The St George Cross flags that came out every year at the beginning of the football World Cup had vanished the moment they had lost to Spain. Funny, he thought, how people were only patriotic when they were winning.

He continued to flick through his newspaper as his wife padded down the stairs and picked up the post from where it lay haphazardly across the doormat. He could hear her flipping through the letters before she called out, her voice confused and curious.

“Honey, there’s a letter here for Evie,” she called. “It’s from a place called Hogwarts.”

Dudley Dursley looked up from his paper, a look of horror flashing across his face.

Oh no. Not again!

Placing the paper down onto the table, he pushed his chair back and watched as his wife walked slowly into the kitchen. She handed the letter silently to him, watching his face as he turned the envelope over in his hands. He couldn’t stop his fingers trembling as he thumbed over the wax seal over the join on the back of the large letter.

“Honey?” Victoria asked quietly, taking a seat next to her husband at the table. “What is it?” When her husband didn’t reply, she craned her neck to look out of the window, Evelyn still happily playing in the back yard, now swinging in graceful arcs on the tree swing Dudley had hung for her.

“Do you know what this is about?” she asked, taking the letter from him.

Dudley nodded.

“What is it then?”

“Witch,” he muttered breathlessly.

Victoria snorted.

“Excuse me?”

“Evelyn,” he breathed. “She’s a…”

Victoria plastered an amused smile to her face and rubbed her husband’s arm.

“Dudley, there’s no such thing,” she laughed. Dudley shook his head dumbly.

“Harry,” he muttered.

“Who’s Harry?” Victoria asked, wracking her brain for when her husband had ever mentioned a Harry.

“My cousin.”

“You don’t have any cousins,” she replied, beginning to get worried. For the first time since she had entered the room, Dudley lifted his head to look at her.

“I do. One. His name is Harry.”

“Why have you never told me this? We’ve been married fifteen years!” she snapped, looking at her husband as if he were a stranger. He was a stranger to her right now. How could he have never told her he had a cousin?

“He’s a…”

“He’s a what? A criminal? A lowlife?” she asked, her head tilted to the side in the way Dudley knew by now was a dangerous pose.

“He’s a wizard,” Dudley replied slowly. Victoria breathed deeply, her eyes burning holes in her husband’s face. For a few moments, she simply stared at him, then, when he opened her mouth, her voice was a deadly whisper.

“You seriously expect me to believe, that your cousin, whom you have not mentioned in the seventeen years we have known each other, is a wizard?”

Dudley nodded.

Victoria shook her head as if this were all a very bad joke. “This is ridiculous.”

“It’s the truth. Ask my parents, they’ll tell you,” he replied quietly. Victoria’s anger only seemed to swell.

“Your parents! Your parents knew about this little joke and let you go along with it?” she hissed venomously. Dudley ran his hands roughly over his face.

“It’s not a joke,” Dudley answered. With a sigh, he began explaining about Harry Potter coming to live with his family at the age of one when his parents had been murdered by a dark wizard, how when he was eleven he’d received the same letter that was sitting on their kitchen table right now, and that he’d left that September, and only returned once a year. Victoria listened intently, even gasping slightly when he told her how Harry was being hunted by this dark wizard, how he’d saved Dudley’s life from these creatures called Dementors. She looked practically enthralled when he told her how he lived with his parents and two wizards for almost a year when it became apparent that they were in danger as well as Harry.

“So, now Evelyn has this letter?” Victoria asked, her hands now trembling almost as much as her husbands. “Do we have a choice whether we send her or not?”

Dudley looked down at the table, chuckling to himself as he remembered his own father’s reaction to the letter that had arrived for Harry. The thousands of letters that had arrived for Harry; including one that came with its very own giant bearded man.

“She is what she is,” Dudley replied finally, giving his wife a solemn glance. “Whether she goes there or not.”

“Is there anyone we can talk to?” she asked.

“I suppose, but I think we should talk to Evie first.”

Victoria nodded in approval, and stood. She opened the back door and ushered Evelyn inside.

Evelyn had loved the idea of going to a wizarding school. She told her parents she would never talk to them again if they didn’t let her go. Dudley remembered once having the same degree of forcefulness about a computer game his parents wouldn't buy for him. Victoria had laughed, knowing that their daughter’s stubbornness had annoyed Dudley, even though she definitely got it from him.

She’d ripped open her letter and told them everything she needed with rapture at each magical item. After going over it three or four times, she finally let her father prise the parchment from her fingers and read it himself. A second sheaf offered help for Muggle parents of a magical child, told them how to get into The Leaky Cauldron, a pub that would lead them through to a street called Diagon Alley.

“Can we go now, Daddy?” Evelyn begged, tugging enthusiastically on her father’s arm.

“Not today Sweetheart,” Dudley replied. “We’ll go next weekend.”

Evelyn talked of nothing else for the next week, and even when they had made the trip to Diagon Alley and bought her supplies, when she got home she spent hours pouring over her books and items. Remembering that Harry had been bought an owl for his schooling, they bought Evelyn a beautiful Barn Owl she named Gandalf even before they had left the shop. It was the only wizard she knew the name of. Dudley had tried to tell her that he didn’t think Gandalf existed, but Evelyn had refused to listen, and told her father in a manner uncannily like her mother, that they didn’t know which wizards existed and which didn’t, and so he shouldn’t make silly assumptions.

As expected, Dudley’s parents, Vernon and Petunia Dursley had taken the news badly. Vernon had hurrumphed and snorted before telling Dudley he should have refused. He spent the rest of the afternoon muttering indistinctly, except for the words ‘crackpot’ and ‘magic tricks’ that would come out quite audibly. His mother had watched Evelyn curiously, but said nothing, her horse like face crinkled in concern. Dudley couldn’t help but share in his mother’s concern. They had all seen what the wizarding world could be like through Harry’s life, even through their own.

Victoria’s parents, on the other hand, were thrilled at the idea. Alan had happily explained that maybe Evelyn would be able to get rid of the mice in the basement with a flick of her wand, and Iris had been so excited that she immediately told Victoria they would pay for anything Evelyn needed to help with her studies. So proud to have a ‘special little girl’ in the family.

It was with a slightly heavy heart that Dudley Dursley helped his daughter pack on the first of September. The trunk only just fit in the boot of the car. Gandalf was strapped into the back seat next to Evelyn, who had been out of bed since the crack of dawn, and Dudley assumed hadn’t slept. She was bouncing up and down in her seat, yelling angrily for her mother to hurry up. After three checks over the house to make sure Evelyn hadn’t forgotten anything, Victoria finally hurried out to the car and got in.

The drive to Kings Cross was, in its entirety, a monologue given by Evelyn listing everything she was excited about. This list was only punctuated by her comments to Gandalf about how he was going to love Hogwarts because apparently there was a large Owlery where he could hang out with the other owls.

When they finally pulled into a parking space, Evelyn was out of the car before Dudley had even managed to turn off the engine. She bounced around as Victoria found a trolley and helped Dudley load the trunk and Owl onto it.

Dudley pushed the trolley through the station, much to Evelyn’s displeasure. Instead, she hurried along next to him, holding her mother’s hand. As they came up towards platform nine, a sense of Déjà vu hit Dudley like a canon ball to the stomach. He remembered walking this way with his father, mother, and Harry. His father’s laughter when they saw there was no platform Nine and three-quarters. Evelyn seemed to have noticed the problem as well, as was looking at her father with wide tearful eyes. Surely this hadn’t all been a mean joke played on her?

“Come on, come on!” a voice rang from behind them, and suddenly a small family of four, the man with flaming red hair that looked strangely familiar to Dudley, walked past them and straight through the barrier between the two platforms.

Evelyn was watching in awe, Victoria in a state of shock. Dudley laughed and nodded, it was now or never. Holding the trolley, he pushed it forward, a pleasant ripple like walking through warm water passing over him. Opening his eyes as he emerged the other side, a scarlet steam train billowed smoke over the crowd. Evelyn jumped up and down and screamed happily.

“Come on, let’s find you a place,” Victoria said to her daughter, as Dudley noticed a group of people up ahead. The man with flame red hair was talking to a man with black unruly hair, who had his back to Dudley. A small girl with the same red hair as whom Dudley assumed was her mother, had her arms wrapped around the man’s waist, his hand placed reassuringly on her shoulder as he nodded and laughed with the red haired man.

Dudley felt a wash of familiarity about the men, and began pushing the trolley towards them. Victoria and Evelyn a little way ahead, hadn’t seen the men, but passed without incident as Dudley walked as slowly as could look natural. Once on the other side of the group, he wheeled the trolley around and looked at the dark haired man.

Same bright green eyes, same round glasses, same dark hair, same lightning bolt scar. Taking a deep breath, Dudley told Victoria to look after the trolley, and walked over.

“Harry?” Harry looked away from his friend and stared at Dudley, recognition slowly trickling over his face until he laughed in shock.

“Dudley?” he asked. Dudley nodded, his face flushing.

“Dudley?” the flame haired man asked incredulously. “You’re cousin Dudley?”

“Yeah,” Harry replied with a sideways glance at his wife before looking back at Dudley. “I can’t believe this!”

“I know,” Dudley half laughed in his nervousness. “You can imagine my reaction when my Evie got the letter.” Harry grinned knowingly.

“How did Uncle Vernon take it?” Dudley grimaced and Harry laughed.

“I’m sorry,” Dudley cut in, realising how rude he’d been. He turned and ushered Victoria and Evelyn over towards them. “Harry, this is my wife, Victoria, and our daughter Evelyn. This is Harry Potter, my cousin.” Harry shook hands with Victoria and crouched down beside the small red haired girl.

“Hi Evelyn, this is my daughter, Lily,” he said as Lily smiled.

“Are you going to Hogwarts now?” she asked Evelyn, a jealous gleam in her eyes.

“Yeah!” Evelyn replied cheerfully. “Are you?”

Lily shook her head.

“Not ‘til next year,” she replied grumpily.

“My two boys have already started,” Harry explained.

“You have three children?” Dudley asked. Harry nodded and looked around.

“Albus is going into his second year, James into his third.” He finally spotted the two boys climbing down from the train. “Oi, you two, come here,” he called. The two boys looked slightly startled, but obeyed their father and came back towards him.

“This is my cousin Dudley, and his daughter Evelyn. I want you two to make sure she’s alright at Hogwarts, ok?” he said. Dudley looked down at the boys, the younger of the two the spitting image of his father, minus the scar of course.

A whistle sounded along the platform, and everyone began rushing to get their children on the train. Harry helped Dudley lug Evelyn’s trunk through the door, and then reached for his two boys to give them quick hugs. Dudley watched as Victoria tearfully kissed their daughter goodbye, and told her to write whenever she needed. Dudley leant down and hugged Evelyn goodbye, wishing her luck. She smiled a little fearfully and climbed onto the train, dragging her trunk and Owl into a nearby compartment and waving through the window at them both.

As the train pulled away from the station, Dudley found himself wrapping his arms around Victoria, his emotions drained. She patted his arms understandingly, resting her head against his shoulder.

“Well, off they go,” Harry mused from behind them. Dudley turned and nodded. Harry looked at him for a moment, his gaze piercing Dudley’s watery blue eyes in the same way Dudley remembered that old wizard with the long white beard did.

“How about we go get a coffee? We can catch up,” Harry grinned. Dudley nodded before he stopped. Where did wizards go to get coffee?

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