A month had gone by after the death of Professor Dumbledore. When Hagrid and the twins arrived at the Tower, the entire school had gathered beneath it. Harry had rushed over to Dumbledore’s body and fallen on it, overcome with grief. He refused to move until finally Ginny had to lead him away. Holly had hung back in the crowd and watched as Dumbledore’s body was moved and prepared to be buried. The funeral was large but felt intimate. All magical creatures paid their respects to the famous, brilliant wizard. Merpeople from the lake, centaurs from the Forest, Hagrid’s half-brother Gawp, and witches and wizards from near and far. Dumbledore was laid to rest in a white tomb to the sound of Fawkes’ beautiful sorrowful cries.
Holly had planned to leave the school almost directly after the funeral. She didn’t want to stay with all the grieving people who were so close to Dumbledore when she had just met him this year. Holly had packed up her belongings and with Hermione’s help, cast an Undetectable Extension Charm on a square black clutch with a wrist strap. It was small enough to fit in a coat pocket or on the bottom of a boot sole. Hermione had done the same spell to a small beaded purse that was around the same size. In her clutch Holly packed the essentials and left her bulky trunk and unnecessary items at a donations bin in Hogsmeade. She had also packed the small radio that had been given to her last Christmas. Holly felt a painful twinge in her stomach at the thought; she had meant to ask Dumbledore what he thought it did or if he had given it to her. ‘Well, it can’t be helped now, maybe I’ll figure it out on my own’ she thought to herself. Holly had just been ready to leave when she was stopped by Ginny. Mrs. Weasley and the Order of the Phoenix had discussed Holly’s safety and decided that she should be housed at one of their safe houses.
So that was Holly’s current position; being looked after by Mrs. Weasley and her family at The Burrow. The charming house looked like it had been added on to many times and had to be held together by magic. Mrs. Weasley had made Holly feel at home- well as much as she could think a home felt like. Holly helped with cooking meals and cleaning. She was currently staying in Charlie’s old room while he was travelling for work. She had gotten much closer with Ginny over the course of the month. They played Quidditch with Ron in their make-shift Quidditch pitch in the backyard and sometimes roamed the Muggle town that was nearby. Holly had met Ginny’s older brother Bill, who was Fleur’s fiancé. When Fleur first saw her, the quarter-Veela made quite a fuss; kissing her cheeks and hugging her excitedly like they were long last friends. Holly soon came to realize that it was an everyday occurrence and it got old fast. She followed Ginny’s lead of trying to avoid Fleur whenever possible.
Holly had been allowed to venture further than the Muggle town only by escort of someone in the Order. Usually it had been Tonks or Lupin and they made a brief stops with Holly for her to pick up some supplies including a travelling cloak, Essence of Dittany, and some of her gold from Arthur Abbott’s secret savings fault. On this particular journey she was accompanied by Mr. Weasley and they were travelling to Arthur Abbott’s old mailing address. Holly had told only one person about the address and that had been Professor Dumbledore. They were going just to see if he had left anything for Holly before he had passed.
Holly entered the post office alone; Mr. Weasley was inconspicuously standing guard outside. He was reading a Muggle Newspaper, looking to see if any wizards were trying to sell anything that may harm them. Holly walked up to the counter and was promptly greeted by an elderly gentleman with a curly white mustache and a balding head.
“Hello my dear, how can I help you today?” He asked Holly politely.
“I’m actually here to check my dad’s old mailing slot sir, Arthur Abbott? I’m his daughter, Amelia Abbott” Holly replied, smiling sweetly at the elderly man. He didn’t look twice and immediately gave Holly the key to a metal mailbox that hung among about twenty others on a far wall.
Holly opened the mailbox and it reviled a few magazines that had different weight loss tips inscribed on them, a bill for a new nose-hair trimmer and a postcard from somewhere in Mexico. Holly smiled slightly to herself as she whispered the password and watched as a compartment at the back of the mailbox opened. Inside was a letter with about two month’s old ink on it. Holly withdrew the letter and saw her name written on the front. She opened the letter to read what was inside.
If you are reading this, that means that what I predicted has happened and I am gone. I hope you are well and are with friends. Arthur Abbott had listed a house in your name in Tutshill, Wales. Ask for Laurie at the local Real-estate agency and she will help you. If my assumptions are correct, you are planning a journey on your own. I do not recommend this but if it’s what you wish you will need accompaniment. Might I suggest the local pet store down the street and to the left of this post office? A large dog would be best. They can be both lovable friend and guard dog when need be.
All the best in your endeavors and remember our lessons last year.
The light is your greatest ally.
Puzzled again by the talk of this unknown ‘light’ (it appeared here and on the note left with the radio), Holly took the letter with her for Mr. Weasley to read. At first the thought of a dog at The Burrow while a wedding was being prepared had him questioning Dumbledore’s request.
“Well Dumbledore was a smart man, I’m sure it won’t be a problem” Mr. Weasley finally said after some thought. The pair walked down the street and to the left to find a small pet store, just like the letter had said. As Mr. Weasley burned the letter with cigarette lighter, Holly entered the shop and started looking at the dogs. After some consideration she purchased a boxer puppy mixed with some other breeds. The shopkeeper had told Holly that the puppy had been found a month ago on the doorstep. It looked to be mixed with possibly Labrador due to its markings. Mr.Weasley looked surprised but pleased at Holly’s choice. It seemed as though he had been expecting Holly to come out with a full grown dog that could be in the way of the wedding.
When the pair returned home, puppy in tow, they were greeted in the kitchen by two very tall, very red haired twin boys. Mr. Weasley introduced them as his sons Fred and George. Holly learned that they ran a small business in Diagon Alley but had returned home for the night, preparing for what was about to happen tomorrow. The Order of the Phoenix had decided to bring Harry from Privet Drive to a safe house of someone in the Order. Very few people know this but that house was going to be The Burrow. Mrs. Weasley had prepared the Burrow for the added guests as Hermione would be staying with them as well. The mission to fetch Harry from Privet Drive was going to be very dangerous but many of the people involved in it didn’t seem worried.
“Oh blimey, it will be as easy as dodging Filtch back at old Hogwarts,” Fred said, waving off Holly’s concern.
“Yeah, the only problem we’ll be having it figuring out how to keep our house from being a warzone when we get Harry here,” George added, winking at Holly, “I’ve heard he’s a real bang with you”. Holly grimaced at the thought of her first meet and greet with her twin.
Feeling better about tomorrow’s escapade, Holly went to sleep content. Her Boxador (Her name for the Boxer-Lab mix breeding) was sleeping soundly in his dog bed in Holly’s room. She could hear people still moving about downstairs but she wasn’t worried anymore. Holly’s dreams that night were filled with soaring eagles, roaring fireplaces and intimate kisses. If anyone were to walk in her room, they would see that she had fallen asleep holding a delicate chain necklace of twisting silver and gold metal.