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HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS
1. The Escape
Harry slunk warily along the footpath, his head slightly bowed, eye’s darting up and down the
street, glancing every now and then left and right. His right hand hovered over the pocket in his
worn out faded jeans where his wand lay hidden, but within easy grasp. His fist was unconsciously
clenching and unclenching. Most people would have found the misty cool night air soothing,
pleasant, but Harry was on edge.
As he rounded the corner of Privet Drive, he stopped. His head turned to survey the street before
him. There was nothing out of the ordinary, but he knew someone was there, somewhere, lurking in
the darkest corners, or hidden by magic. He could feel their presence as sure as he knew he was
standing there himself. He waited for someone to show. He never knew who it would be, but he
could predict their appearance down to the last second. He stood for a moment, almost
overwhelmed by his impatience. It had been the same every night ever since he had been at his
Aunt and Uncles. And tonight, as before, a figure gradually emerged from the nothingness.
Harry was able to make out the features as it made it's way towards him. It was Kingsley
Shacklebolt. After scanning the area as soon as he had seen Harry, Kingsley had removed his
invisibility cloak and given Harry a quick nod in greeting. When they were within a few feet of each
other, Harry spoke.
‘What’s happening? Who’s here with you?’ His voice was calm, but his look was determined.
‘Goldstein is at the other end of the street’ Kingsley said in his deep voice ‘But he’ll be replaced by
Tonks at midnight. I’m on until dawn.’ Even as he spoke, he never stopped surveying the area.
‘Nothing to report?’
This is how the quick exchanges between Harry and his guard had gone every night.
‘No, nothing.’ Harry’s eye’s barely met Kingsley’s as he looked down at his shuffling feet. ‘So …
when am I getting out of here?’
‘Nothing yet I’m afraid.’ Kingsley was used to Harry’s impatience, he had stood guard five out of the
eight nights since Harry had returned to Privet Drive. ‘Give it a bit of time,’ he said ‘things are not
as … easy … as they were. It’s going to take a fair bit of organizing. As it is Podmore has to leave
early …’ he brushed his hand over his bald head ‘so I’m going to be hear alone for about half an
Harry looked up suddenly, and then looked back at the ground just as quickly, his eyes seeming to
be searching for something. This was it! He thought. This was what he’d been waiting for. It was
only a short amount of time, he would have to cut it close, but he knew he could do it. With one
guard gone, he could slip through.
‘Is there any other news?’ Harry always dreaded asking this, but he had to know. If he was going to
go through with his plan, he had to learn everything he could about what The Order knew. There
was silence as Harry waited, eyes still lingering on the ground. He was sure if Kingsley caught his
eye, he would see the guilt Harry tried so hard to conceal. Kingsley cleared his throat.
‘Some of the usual stuff.’ he said, though he seemed hesitant. ‘A few more missing people … they
found Fudge’s body late last night.’
Harry looked away in disgust. Fudge hadn’t been his favourite person in the world. When Harry had
returned from the graveyard, clutching Cedric Diggory’s dead body during the Triwizard Tournament
over two years ago, Fudge had refused to believe that Voldemort had taken form again. And in the
year following, he had gone to great lengths to discredit Harry in every way possible, squashing
most of Dumbledore’s efforts to get people to believe in Harry and to prepare for Lord Voldemort’s
return. But for all Fudge’s faults, he did not deserve the hand that fate had dealt him.
Harry took a deep breath and turned back to Kingsley. Somehow this news had given him the push
he needed. He now held such resolve that he was right in his plans, that he could look Shacklebolt
directly in the eyes.
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‘What are Voldemort and his Death Eaters up to? They must have a plan! You must know something
from following the trail of blood they leave behind.’ Harry said this with such loathing that Kingsley
barely grimaced at the mention of the name Voldemort, but pulled back slightly from Harry,
seemingly more uncomfortable with his tone.
‘We don’t know … exactly.’ Kingsley said evasively. This was the final straw for Harry, he could tell
Kingsley was reluctant to say too much, and finally the pressure of the past eight days, sitting
uselessly in his room at the Dursleys waiting for news, biding his time unable to rest as he waited
for his chance, suddenly burst to the surface.
‘If you think’ he said gravely ‘that Dumbledore didn’t know I was ready for this,’ his eyes blazed
threateningly ‘then you’ve already lost to Voldemort!’ his body was rigid with frustration.
Kingsley seemed exceedingly uncomfortable, but Harry didn’t care. If he was going to get out of
Privet Drive tonight and take on the task Dumbledore had left him to do, then he needed
information, and he needed it now. Harry had no intention of going after Voldemort yet. He had to
find and destroy all of the Horcruxes, the artefacts that contained the pieces of Voldemort’s
shattered soul, before he could do that. No, he needed information so he could avoid detection. If
he was going to do this, he was going to have to do it alone, and the last thing he needed was for
Voldemort to find out what he was up to. With the exception of Ron and Hermione, no one would
know where he was, not the Order, not Mr. and Mrs. Weasley … not even Ginny.
‘Look,’ Kingsley said, he was fidgeting with the invisibility cloak hanging fluidly in his left hand. ‘I
don’t know what good it will do you to know too much right now anyway. You-you can’t leave until
you turn seventeen in a few weeks, it’s safer that way. You will be better protected here than
anywhere else until then, now that Dumble…’ he trailed off with an awkward hand gesture. ‘Well …
you know what I mean.’ He gave Harry a steady look, ‘It’s what he would have wanted.’
Harry let out a heavy sigh and his body slackened slightly. He knew he could not tell Kingsley why
Dumbledore would have understood, he could not tell him about the Horcruxes, about Dumbledore’s
dying wish, so he resigned himself to returning to No 4, where he would sit and wait, now his
chance had come. Harry turned to leave, hunched over, defeated, and had only gone a few paces
when Kingsley called after him.
‘See you same time tomorrow night, then.’
Harry turned slowly and looked at Kingsley ‘Yeah,’ he said quietly ‘I’ll be here.’ A sinking feeling
crept over Harry as he turned his back on Kingsley. Would he ever see him again? Would he ever
see any of them again? He straightened himself to his full height and resumed his state of readiness
as he moved quietly back up Privet Drive.
He knew what he had to do, the path lay before him, and he would walk that path alone, as he had
done many times before.
Harry could see the dim glow of light seeping through the small gaps in the curtains as he reached
No.4. Someone was still awake. Harry crept up to the house and with great care, turned the handle
and pushed the door open as quietly as possible, unwilling to give his Uncle yet another opportunity
to start ranting at him, a favourite past time of his.
It seems the Dursleys had decided the best way to repay Harry for inflicting Dumbledore on them
last summer, was to make his life with them even harder for him than before. He suspected that it
had a lot to do with Dumbledore’s comment about their beloved, and hopelessly spoiled dope of a
son Dudley, who in their eyes was a perfect angel who could do no wrong.
He stepped over the threshold then eased the door back into place and released the handle, but no
sooner had he turned to mount the stairs when he saw his Uncle’s stocky figure standing in the
doorway to the kitchen, arms crossed over his rounded stomach. His eye’s glittered dangerously, as
he glared at Harry, a smug satisfaction etched on his face. He had obviously known Harry had snuck
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out, and had been waiting there for him, ready to catch him. Harry had the impression of being like
a deer caught in the headlights of a car.
‘I knew you were up to something!’ his uncle said in quiet triumph ‘I said to Petunia you had been
sneaking around, and now …' his eyes narrowed ‘now I’ve got you!’ his barely suppressed glee at
springing Harry was turning his face purple. ‘Where have you been boy?’ he demanded ‘Out
terrorizing the neighbours? Prowling around the streets, causing trouble no doubt!’
Harry thought this was a bit rich.
His cousin Dudley was the biggest thug in the neighbourhood, yet somehow his Aunt and Uncle had
always managed to explain away his behaviour as ‘boisterous youth’ or ‘having a bit of roguish fun’.
But Harry knew the truth; Dudley was a prat.
Uncle Vernon’s eyebrow arched high on his forehead as he approached him, his arm raised and his
finger jutting accusingly at Harry. ‘OUT WITH IT!’ he yelled sharply ‘Where have you been going
Harry was mildly astonished that his Uncle was even interested enough in his activities to realize he
had been disappearing off on a regular basis.
A trickle of playful wickedness ran through him.
‘I’ve been reporting to my guard, actually.’ Harry said casually, watching for his Uncle’s reaction. A
deep sense of satisfaction filled Harry as he saw his uncle falter immediately, his face slackening.
Uncle Vernon choked out the word ‘G-Guard?’
‘Yes,’ said Harry ‘that’s right …’ He paused for effect, his Uncles eyes grew wide with uncertainty
‘Guard.’ Harry finally confirmed ‘they’re posted just down the street, been there ever since I got
back from school. You’ve met some of them before … at the station.’
Uncle Vernon looked like he had been hit with a Silencio charm. His lips were trying to form words
but no sound was coming out. Harry was enjoying himself immensely. He knew his uncle would not
have forgotten his encounter with the formidable figure of Mad-eye Moody a year ago. Harry added
with a measured tinge of exasperation ‘They insist I keep them updated with how things are while
I’m here.’ He sighed dramatically. ‘They’re quite overprotective really...’
His Uncle’s lips suddenly fused together, Harry could tell he had not been able to find a single
retort. He was looking everywhere else but at Harry, his arms dangling by his sides as he shifted his
weight uncomfortably. He finally cleared his throat.
‘You’d best get to bed.’ He mumbled without looking at Harry and then he turned and disappeared
into the kitchen without a word, Harry smirking after him.
Strictly speaking, everything Harry said was perfectly true, so he felt no guilt what so ever that he
had unhinged his Uncle. After all, it was only the fact that the Dursley’s were so unkind to him that
gave them cause to worry about his "guard" in the first place.
He headed to his room and sat on the end of his bed, Hedwig hooted softly at him from her perch
atop the cupboard. He looked up at her and smiled. She was the one thing that made being at the
Harry had been planning this night since he had arrived back at the Dursleys, and now that his
chance had come he felt a surge of adrenalin pulse through him. He had some last minute tasks to
do before midnight came, but almost everything he would need, lay in a state of readiness.
Mad-eye Moody had been his main obstacle, his magical eye saw right through almost everything,
including invisibility cloaks, and Harry felt sure Moody could see through the walls into his very
room at times, and on the nights Mad-eye took guard duty, he was quite certain he would not have
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been able to slip by him.
Tonight however, Moody was not going to be a problem, and with only Kingsley on for maybe thirty
minutes, he had his chance. Harry knew the guard changed at midnight and he glanced at the
digital clock by his bed. 10.35pm, that would give him about an hour before he was to leave Privet
Harry drew in a deep breath as he leapt to his feet. Taking out some parchment and ink from his
desk draw, he sat down and started to write. As the quill scrawled across the page, Hedwig
twittered in anticipation, keen to be put to use again. She had gone out only once in the past eight
days, and that was to deliver a short, hastily written note to Ron that contained nothing of interest.
It was not safe to pass information by owl.
Ron would be back at The Burrow, trying to learn anything he could by stealthily listening in on his
father and Bill.
On the train back from Hogwarts Harry, Ron and Hermione had sat in a compartment they kept to
themselves, conceiving various tactical ways of gathering information while Ron and Hermione were
at The Burrow. Hermione had arranged to stay after spending only a week with her family. They
occasionally looked up when interrupted by Order members who were patrolling the train, or fellow
students like Neville who wandered in. But they were, for the most part, left alone. The loss of
Professor Dumbledore had imparted a sombre mood upon the Hogwarts Express.
Every time the compartment door had slid open, Harry expected - hoped, to see Ginny’s face; he
sat through the train journey back to London feeling like part of him was missing. It was the
beginning of the end of what had been for Harry the most wonderfully comforting thing he had ever
known. His heart would have liked nothing more than to have Ginny sat beside him; the smell of
her hair drifting lazily in the air and the comforting warmth of her body leaned against his. But he
knew she could not be with him, he had made that choice. She understood he had to leave her
behind. She understood he must face this challenge without her. She understood.
Harry looked at the message he had just finished writing, it was as bland as the one he had sent
Ron, but it’s purpose was far more important. He was rolling it up and sealing it when Hedwig
fluttered down from her perch and landed on the desk in front of him. She held out her leg
expectantly. Harry smiled at her affectionately and scratched her neck ‘I’m not sending it yet.’
She nibbled at his finger a little too vigorously and Harry pulled it away ‘Ow!’ he breathed laughing
softly, rubbing the red marks that she had left. She flapped her wings huffily and retreated to her
cage for a drink. ‘You’ll just have to be patient, it wont be long.’ He laid the scroll on his bed and
reached for a knapsack. He had discovered it while searching one of the closets in his room days
before; it had been bought for Dudley to take on a camping trip the Dursleys embarked on many
summers ago. It had lain discarded and forgotten ever since.
Harry bent down and lifted the loose floorboard under his bed. There lay a reasonable store of
provisions that he had managed to collect. He had been sneaking around the house in the gloom of
night using his invisibility cloak. His Aunt Petunia put the missing food down to Dudley’s inability to
stick to his diet; his cousin had frequently left traces of midnight binging strewn from one end of the
kitchen to the other.
One night, because of Dudley's veracious appetite, Harry had almost been sprung.
While heading up to his room after having just raided the pantry for supplies, Harry met Dudley
coming in the opposite direction. He had snuck out of his own room and was descending the stairs,
heading straight for Harry who was concealed under his cloak. The sheer size of Dudley meant there
wasn’t enough room for them to pass one another without Harry making significant contact with
him. Harry was holding some packets of instant porridge, dried peas and some tinned fruit in his
arms, and in his scramble to back down the stairs, he dropped a tin of apricot halves. It fell with a
loud clunk, and then to his dismay, continued to roll down the stairs, Harry's feet dodging it, as he
backed down the steps in an effort to get out of the way of Dudley.
Thunk … thunk … thunk was all his startled cousin heard on the stairway below him. Dudley could
see neither Harry, nor the tin of apricot halves still hidden under the cloak.
- 5 -
When Harry and the tin came to a halt at the bottom of the stairs, he looked up and saw in the
gloomy light from the street lamp outside, the look of sheer terror on his cousins bloodless, white
face. Dudley's lower lip wobbled uncontrollably as he turned, stumbling over himself in his rush to
get back to his room, inaudible squeaks escaping him as he heaved his weight against the door and
slammed it shut.
He did not venture out in the small hours of the morning again, which turned out to be very
convenient for Harry indeed.
Harry shoved some clothing and a bottle of water on top of the food he retrieved from the cavity,
and then packed several other items carefully in the outside pockets of the pack. It was now heavily
bulging as it lay on the bed. He reached in the closet for his broom, and placed it beside the scroll.
He took out the invisibility cloak from his trunk and placed it over the back of the chair, and then
lastly he packed his trunk with everything else he owned. It took him some time to check and
double check that he had packed everything; he could not afford to leave anything behind this time
as he had no intention of ever returning.
Hedwig had been watching him from her cage, her head swivelling this way and that as she followed
him round the room. She let out a small screech as Harry sat down at the desk to write one last
I want to thank you, for you have done more than you know.
Because of you my mother did not die in vain.
He placed the parchment squarely in the centre of the desk, stood back and looked to Hedwig.
‘Okay,’ he said quietly raising his arm ‘come here.’ She fluttered down and settled onto Harry’s
outstretched arm. ‘I need you to go to the park and wait for me there Hedwig.’ He said ‘Do you
understand?’ She hooted softly and launched herself out of the window into the night.
Harry locked his trunk, flung the pack on his back, grasped his broom and swung his invisibility
cloak over him.
Harry entered the park, tense and alert. He hadn’t needed to pass Shacklebolt because he was
posted at the opposite end of the street, but he was half expecting Tonks to come materializing out
of thin air on top of him, so he quickened his pace as soon as he left the path to number four. The
bulk of his pack and the awkwardness of his broom made it difficult to stay completely concealed
under his cloak, but his need for urgency was overtaking his need for care as he scuffled along
under his cloak.
Harry eyes were constantly on the move, searching for anything out of the ordinary, though he
suspected he was safe for the time being. The Order of the Phoenix would not be looking for
someone leaving the Dursley’s; they were primarily there to stop anything getting in.
The street lamps glowing dully in the mist cast eerie sprawling shadows across the lonesome grass
of the unwelcoming night time park. Hedwig was perched on top of the swings, her large eyes
looking straight at Harry. She had extremely good eyesight at night, and had no doubt seen a part
of Harry’s foot or broom poking carelessly from under his invisibility cloak. He stopped in the
shadow of the large, dense oak tree and removed the cloak, stuffing it into his jacket. Hedwig
plopped down in front of him silently and he bent down to tie the scroll to her leg.
‘Take this to Hagrid’ he said breathlessly ‘Don’t stop for anything, Okay?’ She trilled lightly and took
off in a silent feathery swoop. Harry mounted his Firebolt and sped off after her, into the night.
- 6 -
With any luck The Order wouldn’t discover his absence until the following night when he failed to
make his nightly report. There was a possibility that Moody would take a shift before then and
discover him gone, but Harry had at least twelve hours under his belt in that event. It was the best
he could hope for. A pang of guilt stabbed at him as he tilted his head into the wind, he knew The
Order would be thrown into a state of uproar when they found out, he could picture Lupin’s reaction
when the news got back to Headquarters.
Over the past few weeks Lupin had reluctantly tried to fill Dumbledore’s shoes and Harry had
noticed the strain in his face when his ex-Professor had pulled him aside on the Hogwarts Express to
give him instructions for the summer. Lupin would be racked with guilt and worry when he heard,
but Harry could think of no other way to do what he knew he must.
The wind bit through his jacket as he soared over the hills below. Hedwig was an incredible flyer,
and although Harry had no trouble keeping up with her on his Firebolt, he couldn’t help but marvel
at her skill and determination as he tailed her.
Things would have been much easier if he was seventeen and confident with his disapparating, he
could have apparated near his destination and been there in an instant. But using magic while he
was sixteen at The Dursleys would have brought the ministry down on him immediately, which also
would have alerted The Order, and Harry needed time if this was to work.
Harry was chilled to the bone by the time he started the descent. He had been successfully led to
Hogwarts by Hedwig who was heading straight for the newly restored Hagrid's hut, but Harry could
not risk flying over the castle walls, unsure of the enchantments they held, so he landed near the
edge of the Dark Forest and pulled his cloak back on.
The absence of the brightly lit castle torches which normally sent light streaming out of the
windows, made Hogwarts appear far less welcoming than Harry remembered, and it seemed to him
that the castle itself was lamenting Dumbledores passing.
When he finally rapped on Hagrid’s door, Harry heard Fang launch into a zealous round of barking,
followed by the muffled sound of something breaking within. Hagrid opened the door only inches,
his beetle like eyes staring suspiciously through the gap.
‘Who’s there?’ he grunted
Harry lifted the front of his cloak so only Hagrid would see him, he had not seen anyone else
around, but it was best to be cautious.
‘It’s me.’ He said in a half whisper, ‘Can I come in?’
‘Oh, It’s you.’ Hagrid relaxed for a moment, but as he opened the door to let Harry pass he
suddenly tensed again. ‘Wait a minute! Wha the ‘ell are you doin here?’
‘Ssh!’ said Harry impatiently as he removed his cloak, placed his broom against the inside wall and
proceeded to close all the curtains in the cabin. Hagrid had locked the door and was standing with
his arms on his hips, a look of annoyance plastered across his face.
‘Yeh not s’pose to be here!’ he exclaimed, more quietly this time but his anger still evident. ‘Yer
s’pose to be home where yer safe!’
Harry’s message lay opened on the table near Hedwig who was pecking at a dish of food. He gave
her head an affectionate rub then pulled off his pack and threw it in a corner, planting himself on
one of the huge wooden chairs by the table.
‘I need your help.’ He said, as he looked Hagrid squarely in the eyes. ‘There’s something I’ve got to
do, something that I cant do alone. But it’s very important, and I need your help.’
‘What are yeh talking about? Yeh cant jus walz in here with plans to do something that'll mor’an
likely put yeh in danger again. Yeh can’t jus go sneakin off like that!’ Hagrid waved his arms
pointedly at Harry. He was intensely irritated and if Harry hadn’t known him as well as he did, he
might have feared him right now.
‘I had no choice,’ Harry’s eyes dropped to the ground and he added quietly ‘There was no other
- 7 -
‘I’m a member of The Order, I am!’ said Hagrid indignantly. ‘Wha are they gonna think when they
discover yer gone, eh?’ Harry felt awful, but he needed to make Hagrid understand, so he looked up
‘Hagrid, please listen to me … this is really important … just hear me out. You know I wouldn’t have
come unless there was no other way.’ And because he didn’t know what else to say, ‘Please Hagrid
… trust me.’
Hagrid heard the plea behind Harry’s voice and his look of anger had gradually turned to one of
concern. He seemed to be going through some sort of internal struggle as he moved over to the
sink and scooped up the broken pieces of a cup.
‘Don’t know what good it’ll do yeh.’ He dumped them in a bin and looked over at Harry ‘I’ve half a
mind to send a message 'n let ‘em, know where yeh are right now!’ He turned his full attention on
Harry who sat slumped in the oversized chair. Hagrid puffed out his chest ‘Not promisin nothin
mind,’ he said ‘but if yeh got somethin to say, I’ll hear yeh out.’
‘I need you to take me to Godric's Hollow. I want you to show me where my parents were
Harry watched Hagrid where he stood, and for a moment he wavered, the thought struck him that
Hagrid would never agree to this. Hagrid’s eyes closed for a fraction of a moment as he sighed
heavily, then he pulled out a chair and sat down opposite Harry, he was looking intently at the
tabletop as if searching for the right words.
‘I knew yeh’d wan teh go there one day. Bin expectin it for a while,’ Harry had imagined all sorts of
reactions from Hagrid, but not this. Hagrid finally met Harry’s eyes ‘ever since yeh returned from
the graveyard, in fact. But it’s not somethin’ yeh should be thinkin ‘bout doin right now.’ Hagrid’s
eyes swelled with tears and he looked away again ‘Not now tha Dumbledores gone. It’s not safe
Harry, it’s the sorta place they’d be waitin fer yeh teh turn up.’
‘I have to go Hagrid, I have to know what happened.’ Harry was trying to catch Hagrid’s eye. ‘I
need to see where it all started.’ Hagrid was listening to Harry as though he knew exactly what he
was going to say before he said it. ‘I need to see what’s left behind.’ Harry added quietly. Hagrid
frowned as he looked back at him.
‘What d’yeh mean, left behind?’
Harry was trying to read the look on Hagrid’s face in an effort to decide what he should say next.
‘What’s left of my parents house?’
‘It’s jus as it was the night it happened. The place was pretty much destroyed after Sirius returned
and tha Pettigrew blew up the street. There wern’t much left, but nob'dy was allowed teh go near it
after that, tell yer the truth, nob'dy much wanted to either.’
‘So, no ones been through it since Voldemort was there? No one at all?’ Harry asked.
‘Dumbledore wen there teh put a block on it. Magic teh stop curious folk from wanderin in there.
Guess he thought it might be dangerous still, or maybe he thought it was a fittin memorial, I don't
know, but like I says ‘Arry, it’s not the sorta place yeh wanna be rushin off to now.’
Harry sighed and looked away. ‘I have to go, it’s something I’ve got to do.’ He was talking more to
himself as he studied Hedwig, but then he looked back to Hagrid ‘And I’ll go with or without your
help, if I have to.’
Hagrid was slowly shaking his head, his eyes on the table again ‘Yer goin to stay here until The
Order come and get yer, I cant let yeh do it Harry, I’m sorry. I understand why yeh wanna go, but
it’s not safe, I’ll send ‘em a message 'n let ‘em know yer here-’ He started to rise from his chair, but
Harry leapt to his feet and had his wand out so fast that Hagrid stopped, one arm still resting on the
- 8 -
table, eyeing the slightly shaking wand now aimed at him.
‘I’m going Hagrid, one way or another.’ Harry’s voice was shaking but he was determined to see this
through. Hagrid drew himself to his full height as Harry gulped before adding, ‘You can either help
me, or step aside’
Hagrid did not seemed perturbed by Harry’s wand; on the contrary, he was looking at Harry with
what looked like pity. They stood across the table from one another for a time, neither speaking,
but a change was gradually overcoming Hagrid.
‘Firs’ly, I know yeh wont use that thing on me so yeh migh as well put it away, and secondly’ Hagrid
reached into a cupboard and pulled out a plate of rock cakes ‘Better have somethin to eat, it’s a way
teh the Hollow and we don't know how long we’ll be gone.’
A short time later the two of them were hurrying across the grounds, the sun was almost up and
Harry, hidden under his cloak, was having a job to keep up with Hagrid’s gigantic strides. When
they arrived at a battered old wooden shed near the greenhouses, Hagrid pulled out a key ring that
jangled loudly with what must have been over a hundred keys, all of different shapes and sizes. He
fumbled through them for a moment then seemed to find the one he was looking for. As the old
door swung open they entered into complete darkness, Harry took out his wand and lifted the cloak.
There were no windows and the atmosphere in the shed was thick and dusty as if it hadn’t been
opened in years. There was an assortment of odd wooden carvings scattered across the workbench
and unusual leather straps dangled here and there from the ceiling. There were several rusty old
cages of different sizes and strengths stacked against the walls, and in the very back corner stood a
large dark motorcycle.
Hagrid grabbed a scrap of cloth and brushed the seat, a cloud of dust and grit filled the air and
Harry spluttered, waving his hand around trying to disperse it.
‘The last trip this bike did was teh take you from yer parents house to your Aunt and Uncles.’ Hagrid
looked down at Harry ‘and now sixteen years on, it’s goin to take yeh back to the beginning again,’
Hagrid raised his eyebrows dubiously ‘if we can get it goin o‘course!’
'This is Sirius's bike?' Harry looked at it as a pang shot through him.
'Yup! Kept it here all these years. Don't have much use for it meself, don't go anywhere I might
need it. Still ere it is!' Hagrid patted it fondly. 'You know, come teh think of it, it'd be your bike
now.' He leaned over it and winked at Harry, 'You want teh drive it?'
'No!' Harry said quickly, 'I mean, I don't have a license.'
'Well, yer in good company then,' Hagrid smiled. 'Nor do I!'
Minutes later the bike was rumbling loudly and Harry scooted onto it’s back behind Hagrid.
‘Nox’ he said as he replaced his wand, careful to tuck his cloak around himself, keeping his feet well
hidden. The biked jerked suddenly, then rolled out into the early dawn rays, Harry grasping the
pillion bar tightly.
‘Yer alright Harry?’ Hagrid asked over his shoulder.
Hagrid weaved between the greenhouses and headed towards the gate, once through he turned the
bike South and accelerated. Harry felt the front wheel lift and a moment later the rear left the
ground as well and they were ascending rapidly as Hagrid steered them over the forest.
They sailed along at a great height for what seemed like hours to Harry, it was almost impossible to
talk to Hagrid over the sound of the wind and the grumbling engine, so his thoughts strayed to
other people and places.
- 9 -
He had told Ron and Hermione of his plans to return to Godric's Hollow so he knew they would be
expecting this, and he had sworn them to secrecy, so when they were questioned by Mr. Weasley,
(as he knew they would be) they would put on a plausible act of innocence while denying any
knowledge of his whereabouts.
Ginny, on the other hand had no idea, though because she was always quick on the uptake, Harry
suspected she would know he was up to something by Ron and Hermione's reactions. It made him
feel better knowing that she was smart enough to figure out when something was really wrong, and
he was reassured by the thoughts of seeing her again when the wedding came. He knew he would
not be able to touch her, or seek the solace he had found in her arms, but he would look upon her
again and that would be enough.
The sun was high in the sky when they started their descent, and it wasn’t long before Hagrid had
found a suitable place to land; a clearing near the edge of a pine forest. They walked some miles to
the edge of town, Harry looking about him from under his invisibility cloak. As the houses became
more frequent and shops started to spring up, Harry began to notice things about the town that
were remarkably familiar.
2. Back To The Beginning
The streets began to fill with people the closer they were to the centre of town, and Hagrid was
attracting a variety of looks from the passers-by, not the least being a sort of stunned gaze that
followed him as they were unable to stop themselves from turning their heads as they gaped after
his enormous bulk. But Hagrid lumbered along the footpath, bending very low every now and then
to avoid hitting his head on a shop awning, Harry alongside him under his cloak.
Some pedestrians automatically gave Hagrid a wide berth, even taking the trouble to cross the
street before continuing on their way, however there were one or two very old people who merely
looked slightly surprised when they noticed him, and went back to chatting to who ever they were
with, or scanning the shop windows with great interest.
Godric’s Hollow was the greenest and prettiest place Harry had ever seen. He had noticed on the
walk in, the grassy fields had seemed particularly lush, and the trees almost too tall, as if every
living thing was thriving. Closer to town every nook and cranny was filled with the richest lush
foliage or peppered with an array of dazzling colourful flowers. Even the people looked unusually
healthy and bright.
You couldn’t have asked for a cleaner looking hub, and although many of the buildings were
obviously very old, they were lovingly looked after, none of the flaking paintwork or cracked bricks
that you might ordinarily expect. It was almost as if the buildings were in some sort of time warp
while everything else carried on around them. But it wasn’t just the beauty of this town that caught
The "Welcome To Godric’s Hollow" sign was the first hint of what lay in wait. It was in the form of a
shield, painted richly in red and gold, with the formidable Gryffindor Lion rearing up on hind legs,
mouth open and teeth bared in mid roar with its claws out stretched. ‘Population – 2297’ it said in
Gold Lettering across the bottom. Over some of the oldest buildings, moulded into the keystone
brick that was common in the archways was the distinctive mark of the lion once more, some had
abandoned the red and gold colour scheme, but many were very much still icons of Gryffindor.
Small bronze lions were mounted atop railing ends and the shield was repeated several times
throughout the streets signs.
In the very centre of town was a marble statue, it would have been close to 15 feet in height and
was surrounded by a garden bed of vibrant red and golden-yellow flowers. The bearded man stood
proud and tall, wearing what could have been a travelling cloak, and a hat with a wide brim, which
tapered up to a point that sagged gently to one side. His left arm was held aloft, his hand cupped
loosely as if holding something of great importance, his right hand rested on a the hilt of a sword,
the tip of the blade on the ground. Harry did not need to look at the plaque at the base of the
- 10 -
statue to know that this was Godric Gryffindor,
As they neared it Hagrid spoke ‘Guess yeh know who tha is.’ Nodding at the impressive stone
‘Yeah,’ said Harry as he looked around him to make sure no one was close. ‘This was a wizard town
once, wasn’t it.’
‘Yep! Long time ago though, bin muggles here for centuries now, but there are still wizards here
n’all.’ Hagrid said looking about him ‘It’s them that looks after the town mostly, they keeps it true.’
‘Don’t know if yeh noticed but things don’t exactly age here like they do elsewhere.’ Hagrid looked
at the statue of Godric and added ‘He was a very powerful wizard by all accounts, set up all sorts of
enchantments on the area teh keep it from gettin spoiled. He wanted to make sure it would remain
true to Gryffindor here long after he’d gone. His family lived here fer generations, buildin it up, kept
the enchantments goin. Mostly older wizards here now though, they stay in memory of ‘im.’ Hagrid
put a hand up to his eyes and looked into the sun hovering in the sky. ‘It’s goin teh be dark in a
couple of hours so we’d better get a move on.’
Harry turned away from the marble man and followed Hagrid down the road, winding further and
further through the quaint older style houses. As the sun dipped lower the buildings glowed and
shadows crept across the road. The landscape took on an almost surreal appearance but the beauty
of it was all but wasted on Harry. He was aware of only one thing. He was almost at the place where
Voldemort had destroyed his family.
When they rounded Achilles Lane the change in their surroundings was instant. Instead of the
delicate garden beds and cosy cottages they had just passed, the houses lay abandoned, distinctly
grey in appearance and lacking any trace of warmth or homeliness. The occasional For Sale sign
was stuck in an overgrown garden and there was neither light nor sound coming from any of the
Then suddenly, there it was.
Harry looked out on the devastation before him and he knew he had arrived. Hagrid stopped in front
of the ruin and cleared his throat. He looked to where he thought Harry ought to be, but said
Harry removed his cloak and stared out at the scene, a stony look on his face. There was a corner
section of a room with part of the ceiling still attached, jutting out of piles of rubble, the only trace
that a house once stood there. He gazed at it for a moment, unaware of his cloak sliding from his
slackening grip to the ground.
He started to move slowly towards the ruin, not thinking about the block Dumbledore had placed on
it, not thinking that at any moment he would be repelled backwards. One foot in front of the other
as if in a trance, he made his way to where it had all began. He could vaguely hear Hagrid’s voice
behind him but he could not stop himself, he stepped beyond the tiny white gate and amongst the
He made his way to the partially standing room, scanning the wreckage as he went, unsure of what
he was looking for, every now and then something caught his eye, but when he bent to investigate
it was pieces of broken glass glittering in the light, or fragments of plaster and wallpaper. He
stopped before the wall and looked up at the sagging ceiling, then beyond to the sky. He didn’t have
much time before sunset, so he closed himself to everything but the task at hand.
‘Harry!’ he looked over to where Hagrid was yelling to him from outside the gate. ‘Harry, I think yeh
should come back, I can’t get past the block!’ Hagrid looked as if he were pressed against a pain of
glass. His cheek and lips were distorted as he pushed himself into the invisible barrier, straining to
As Harry watched, it struck him that Dumbledore had protected this site from everyone entering,
except him. Either Dumbledore knew Harry would want to come back or he was intending to bring
him here himself.