The Forgotten Memory
Chapter 21: Stories from Uncle Charlie
Albus wrote to Scorpius when he got upstairs, hardly listening to Rose’s lecture on why they should stay out of people’s internal affairs. He didn’t expect to get a response from Scorpius anytime soon, though. It was therefore surprising when Albus received an owl some time before dinner, just when Uncle Charlie arrived. He ripped open the letter to read Scorpius’ response. He had a feeling that Scorpius would wave it aside and insist it wasn’t important. But alas, the content of the letter was different than what Albus expected.
Don’t let is mystify you too much. I know what we need to know. I usually wouldn’t care too much about Gryffindor issues. In my opinion, the more issues the better. That’s also what my grandfather said. When I asked him, he told me it hardly mattered what family matters other people had, especially when they were ‘Muggle-lovers.’
Ask your father. I think Mark’s parents may have something to do with the second war we read about since the use of the term Muggle-lover is quite outdated. I asked my father for clarification, but he just did what he usually does and told me to accept that whatever issue they have doesn’t concern me.
If we want to listen to them, I can understand, but I am rather curious as to why such a term is used for them, and yet weren’t mentioned once in the book you read? Are you sure you haven’t heard their names before?
We could probably ask Madam Wolf for help when we get back. She might know, or at least point us in the right direction. Just don’t tell Rose. You know how she is.
Anyways, Merry Christmas,
Give your family a happy new year and tell your dad I said hi.
Albus would’ve liked to dwell, but Christmas at the Potter house was not one to be ignored. It was simply impossible. Uncle Charlie arrived as the first, and Lily and Hugo crowded around him excitedly. Mere seconds later, loud cracks sounded outside, and next thing Albus knew, a flurry of snow rushed in from the wind, followed by Uncle Bill, Aunt Fleur, and their children Victorie, Dominique, and Louis.
The Naturalist and family friend Luna arrived with her husband Rolf Scamander. This meant that their children Lorcan and Lysander Scamander weren’t far behind. Poking their heads shyly from behind their father, they nodded quietly at Albus. The twins were blonde like their mother, and Lysander had her quirky attitude.
Uncle Percy was next to come, but his kids ran in first. Molly was to start Hogwarts the next year, and Lucy the year after with Lily and Hugo. Molly a striking resemblance to their grandmother and Lucy looked more like Uncle Percy.
Albus stuck around, because hearing stories from Uncle Charlie about his dragons in Romania were always entertaining. Before he could start though, Uncle George had to come. Uncle George usually stayed quiet. It was recently when Albus discovered that he lost his twin in the Battle of Hogwarts. He was very humorous and cracked a lot of jokes. He was somewhat like James’ role model, but it was Aunt Angelina who was the more outgoing one. She was certainly athletic.
Their kids greeted the adults for a short time, and then retreated to where Albus and James stood. James’ friend, Fred, being their cousin, was Uncle George’s son, named for the late twin. The younger daughter was Roxanne, who also sported red hair.
Uncle George arrived with the two Weasley elders, Molly and Arthur Weasley, and the party began. Arthur grouped the younger kids, Albus included, into a large hug and laughed at Molly’s story of how she pricked her finger.
Albus was then to endure an hour of his own storytelling to the adults of how his first term at Hogwarts was going, and it made him really uncomfortable when Ginny asked him to tell them about Mark. Trying to catch his dad’s eye and facially beg him to stop this, he described Mark as a person and attempted to leave out the parts involving fights.
Alas, Ginny hounded him on it and Harry threw him an apologetic look as Albus delved more into it. Reactions weren’t as bad as Albus imagined when he said he dueled with the kid. Uncle George went into one of his rare moments of glee and as he whooped aloud. Aunt Angelina laughed at the whoop and Arthur grinned. The Scamander twins looked enviously at Albus, but Molly pursed her lips; however, and Percy shook his head disapprovingly.
Albus was in danger of facing another hour long lecture by Percy when Rose thankfully launched into her own story of her first year. Finally, the storytelling ended and as anticipated, Uncle Charlie jumped up, “Who wants to hear of the wild Hungarian Horntail?”
Albus sighed in relief as James got up eagerly with Fred and Louis. Lily, Hugo, Roxanne, Lorcan, Lysander, Molly and Lucy followed them up, and walked Uncle Charlie out of the room and into the kitchen, where he’d sit them at the table and tell them what they wanted to hear.
“Alright, it was a dark night,” Charlie began. “The Horntail was on a kind of wild rampage. I was tasked with finding and incapacitating it.”
“Inkapitate?” Hugo repeated, misunderstanding the word.
“Incapacitate,” Rose corrected. “It means to injure, or otherwise render it unable to attack.”
“Anyways, so I found it terrorizing a Muggle village. Now, Romanians are quite alert so you know, and especially those in this particular village. The Romanian Ministry for Magic had a time covering up this mess from the Muggles”-
On Charlie went, eloquently describing the attack in great detail the Scamander twins listening with rapt attention. He described how he was forced to summon water from a nearby lake in order to drench the Horntail, and then hit it with a Conjunctivitus Curse, a sleeping spell and a final blow.
The kids, especially the younger girls, were clapping enthusiastically while Fred and Louis wolf-whistled in joy. Unfortunately, Albus was tired. He didn’t share their interest in Charlie’s stories, because they were told in consideration of his younger audience.
As the clapping died down, Harry and Ginny led all the adults out of the sitting room into the dining room, signaling time for Christmas dinner. Dinner was the time Albus picked to converse with a certain two people.
As they moved, Albus slowed his walking so Rose would be on his heels, and he asked her, “Listen, if I open Mark with your mum”-
“Al, don’t even!”
“C’mon Rosie,” Albus whined pleadingly. “Their names are in books. I could easily find out. If some Wizards already know the secret, why should I stay out of it? What’s so secretive anyways?”
Rose sighed in defeat, and shaking her head, clicking her tongue continuously, she said, “Promise you won’t bug Mark about it.”
Albus agreed just as they took their seats. Albus chose a seat right beside Aunt Hermione. She was the brains in the family, so Albus felt he could ask her for information like this. Rose sat right across from her, and picked from the middle of the table steak and turkey and piled her plate with favorites before fulfilling her promise.
“Mum, do you know who the Wallader’s are?” Rose asked innocently.
Albus thought Rose did it pretty well. She asked it so innocently, and the only problem was that Harry looked up at this question with interest. He might’ve tried to catch Albus’ eyes a few times, but Albus kept his eyes firmly on Rose. Harry knew Albus was interested, and as long as Albus stayed out of the conversation and listened casually, Harry might not suspect anything.
Aunt Hermione looked interested certainly, and she nodded at Harry before starting on, “Well, I know they’re a powerful family. Hmm…” Hermione also seemed like she was trying to say what was necessary, but she didn’t look uncomfortable like Harry did. “They are firstly among the last Pure-bloods to be living today, and wield great power. It’s mainly due to a tradition they hold of living like Muggles for a certain period. It’s said to give you greater appreciation for your magical abilities, and it therefore increases. It requires a lot of willpower, which they have a knack for.”
“So, they’re well known?” Rose asked.
“Yes, it seems so. I’m not an expert on them, but they’re known for… certain reasons. Plus, there’s the”-
“Are they known for arrogance?” Albus blurted out. Harry grinned as Albus said this, but Albus wasn’t too worried. It was still casual, and it was natural for Albus to ask a question like this anyway.
To his surprise, Hermione didn’t scold him, or frown in discontent with Albus’ lack of tolerance. Instead, she smirked, “No one is perfect. I know that such power can lead to overinflated pride, so they probably do hold a degree of arrogance.”
“Their whole family is in Gryffindor,” Ron pointed out, having listened in with Harry.
“Oh, honestly, Ron, it hardly matters!” Hermione snapped. “You possess some degree of pride, the way you’re acting.”
Before Ron could respond, Harry cleared his throat and said, “Guys, not here. It’s Christmas and there’re kids at the table. Pride does happen as well, even among Gryffindors. The way I’ve heard of Mark acting towards… certain people… reminds of Draco sometimes.”
This seemed to end the little conversation they were having. Hermione and Harry started discussing House-elves, Ron rolled his eyes, and Rose nodded at Albus indicating she did her job and there was nothing more to be said.
Albus spent the rest of the holidays sitting across from Hugo on the bed in the room they were sharing. If there was one cousin Albus could really relate to, it was Hugo because they both shared a great interest in the national Quidditch league and both had the same favorite Quidditch team. The Appleby Arrows. In fact, Ron had taken them to a Quidditch game between them and the Tornadoes.
“And they kicked ass against the Tornadoes!” Hugo said gleefully the last day of the holidays.
“Language, Hugo,” Hermione glared at him warningly.
The boy went as red as his hair and looked up at Albus, “They’re facing the Vastra Vultures on Wednesday.”
“Aw, I’m gonna miss it obviously,” Albus groaned. “You’ll have to tell me who wins.”
“Well, it’ll be the Arrows won’t it?” Hugo shrugged. “They have the best seeker and the Vulture chasers are lacking.”
“He’s right,” Ron put in. “Morgan isn’t too good, and Harper slacks off during the friendly matches. It’s another game for the Arrows. Let me know when they face the Cannons.”
“Not till the summer,” Albus spoke up. “I looked at the schedule in the Daily Prophet.”
Yeah, not till July, and no doubt the Arrows will massacre them. 1000-0.”
“You’re grounded Hugo,” Ron said promptly.
Albus and Ginny laughed as Ron went red around his ears, grinning guiltily. Hugo grinned widely before turning to Lily and talking to her animatedly. How Albus would miss watching the games with Hugo.