• Published 23rd Apr 2017
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Magic School Days - Dogger807

When the CMC asked Discord to help them attend magic school, he pulled an owl out of his hat. Only he didn't exactly have a hat. Which was okay, since their new school had a singing one laying around. Where the hay was Hogwarts anyway?

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Chapter 67: To the Point

The solicitor patiently waited for someone to answer the bell as he stood on the doorstep of the beautifully-maintained Georgian Era mansion. He reflected on how the estate, like his firm, had been passed down from generation to generation to the oldest son. He reflected on how the line of succession, like that of his firm, was destined to end with the current generation.

There was no mistaking the striking appearance the man made, dressed in the traditional pinstripe suit and bowler hat. He was acknowledged to be the best in his business, with more clients vying for his services than his firm could possibly handle. Still, he had answered the call from his oldest client, one who had lived through six of Her Majesty's wars and had served in two, clearing his day's overloaded schedule at a moment's notice. This was a summons he could not and would not ignore. Some debts could never be paid, yet that did not stop him from trying.

The client's personal nurse answered the door. "Please come with me," she said. "You are expected."

The velvety carpeting muffled their footsteps as they made their way through the richly-appointed hallway to a set of solid oaken doors. The nurse knocked thrice before swinging them open; well-oiled hinges deprived them of the creaking sound that should have accompanies such an ancient portal.

“Ah,” said the old man sitting in an overstuffed leather recliner with a blanket draped over his legs. “You’ve arrived. Good. Come in. Come in.”

“Bill,” the solicitor greeted, looking into eyes that were as alert as the day he had first met the man. “I came as soon as I could; you did say it couldn’t wait.”

“I did,” the old man acknowledged. Looking at the hat, he said, "There's no need for the titanium toque; this isn't that sort of issue." He gestured toward a desk where a lone bottle of blended malt scotch whisky stood in dusty glory. “I think some pleasure before business would be appropriate.”

The solicitor eyed the bottle before saying, “You’ve been holding onto that old thing for as long as I can remember, always said you were saving it for some special occasion.”

The old man smacked his lips, also letting his gaze drift to the bottle. “I don’t have many occasions left in me. I think now would be the perfect time to see if it was worth the wait.”

Worry creased the brow of the solicitor as he settled onto the wingback chair across from his client. “Are you feeling okay? It’s not like you to sound so defeatist.”

“I’m old. I’ve outlived my wife and my children. What’s left are people who see me as naught but a bothersome old man with a loose claim of familiarity.” Bitterness soaked the words. “I choose to outlive that whisky as well. Now open it; I have two last tasks for you.”

The nurse, still in the room, bit her lower lip, clearly not pleased that her charge was contemplating drinking spirits.

The old man chuckled at her with dry humor. “Why don’t you join us as well, dear. That bottle is older than you are, and it would only be fitting for you to enjoy it with us.”

“I couldn’t sir,” the nurse said. “I’m on duty.”

The old man made a dismissive gesture with a hand. “Poppycock. You are just as absorbed in your work as my good friend here. In fact, both of you have neglected to find someone special to fill the void. Come sit on his lap and cuddle with him; you could both use the company.”

“Sir!’ The nurse reddened at the scandalous thought.

The solicitor chuckled. “Did you call me just so you could set me up with your nurse?”

“No, but I can sense you two would be perfect together.” The old man chuckled again. “Take her on a date and charge me for your time. I don’t think you’ll regret it.”

The solicitor looked at the profusely blushing nurse. “I don’t have time for relationships,” he proclaimed.

“Make time,” the old man ordered.

The solicitor laughed as he crossed the room to open the bottle. “You know how badly my last attempt ended.”

“You’ll have better luck this time,” the old man said with certainty.

The solicitor took three glasses and splashed some of the precious liquid in them. “What tasks do you need me to do?” he asked, changing the subject.

“Felicity,” the old man said curtly.

Wincing, the solicitor braced for a tirade. “What about Felicity?”

“I need you to write her back into my will.” The tirade never came.

Placing the stopper back in the bottle, the solicitor said, “I thought you didn’t approve of her relationship.”

Silence met his assertion.

“Have you decided that she is right and you are wrong?” the solicitor asked with caution.

“I have decided that being right doesn’t matter.”

“Words of wisdom,” the solicitor said, placing a glass within easy reach of the old man and handing one to the still-blushing nurse.

“I just regret that it has taken me so long to utter them.”

“And the second task?” The solicitor retook his seat.

“I’ve decided I want to leave some lasting good in this world. Tomorrow, at noon, you shall be having lunch with a young lady named Yasemin.”

“Another date?” The solicitor took a sip, enjoying the rare treat. “I’m not that desperate, you know.”

“No.” The old man chuckled then turned to look at the nurse. “I meant it when I said I want you to sit on his lap.”

The nurse looked at the old man, her whole head doing an impression of a cherry. Then with a sigh, she decided to humor him. A few seconds later she settled onto the lap of the solicitor.

“There,” the old man said. “That wasn’t so hard was it?”

The nurse lowered her eyes and nodded. “Oh,” She said noticing something out of place. “You’ve got something green and slimy on your blanket. Let me go get you a clean one.” She made to rise again.

“No.” The old man smiled wanly. “Now is not the time to fuss over the bodily functions of an old man. Stay where you are.”

She settled back down and started to worry if things might soon be taking a turn for the perverse.

The old man took a sip from his own glass, wincing visibly. “The woman you are to meet tomorrow wants to open an orphanage. You are to see that she receives three times what she is asking for to get started. Make sure my will reflects that her orphanage is to be well-funded through the years. Help her with her goal to provide a loving environment for the underprivileged children she plans on taking in.”

“That is uncharacteristically altruistic of you,” the solicitor said, too aware of the young woman sitting on his lap to mince words.

“I don’t have a lot of time left; I want to do some good before I go.” The old man placed his glass back on the table he had claimed it from. “This is a chance to do some lasting good.”

“You’ll be around for years to come,” the solicitor returned, getting a whiff of the nurse’s hair as she turned toward the old man in surprise.

“You’re a solicitor,” the old man noted. “You should be a better liar than that.”

“You’re a friend,” the solicitor said. “I wouldn’t lie to you.”

The old man sighed, letting his eyes slide shut. “You have your tasks. I trust you’ll do what is necessary. Take the bottle with you; I find it’s not to my liking. And most importantly, don’t forget to ask her on that date.”

The solicitor looked the woman sitting on his lap in the eyes. “Friday?”

She nodded her head rapidly, unable to maintain the eye contact.

Years later, lovingly holding his firstborn in his arms, the solicitor would reflect that the bottle of liquor had been the lesser of the gifts he had received that day.

The palace in Canterlot was a true testament to the ingenuity and engineering of ponykind. The main structure seemed to defy gravity as it clung to the side of a cliff. Tastefully arranged gardens provided seas of tranquility amid the hustle and bustle of the machinations of government that transpired in its wealth of rooms. Adventure seekers would have been thrilled exploring the many towers and hidden passages from which the public was excluded. The structure was so large that it was rumored that even Celestia herself could not walk through every room in a month. Despite its size, the palace still hosted more than one unexpected meeting.

The odd girl out boggled for a second when she recognized the foals approaching. "Well, if it isn't the Gryffindors."

“Daphne Greengrass, what are y'all doing here?” Apple Bloom asked as she beheld the human girl and her escort.

“My parents sent me back to our suite,” Daphne said, exasperated. “They are spending the night in the hospital with my sister and won’t let me stay.”

“Your sister is in the hospital?” Neville asked. “I’m sorry to hear that; I hate hospitals.”

A wave of agreement washed through the foals and the adult ponies escorting them.

“It’s actually good news,” Daphne said. “My sister has been a victim of a curse since birth. The ponies were able to remove it, and now she is better off than she was before.”

“I’m sorry to rush everypony,” Lyra interjected. “We need to owl ourselves back to Ponyville to be in time for our prior engagement.”

“Please don’t let me keep you,” Daphne said politely.

“Sweetie,” Rarity said, “why don’t you invite your friend to spend the night. There is no reason she should suffer alone in a strange room, and I’m sure she’d appreciate the company.”

“That won’t be necessary,” Daphne said. “I can handle a night by myself.”

“Nonsense,” Rarity tutted. “I'm sure your parents would agree. It is better to be in company than to sit and worry alone. And don’t tell me you aren’t worrying. I know I would in your place even if I knew my sister would recover.”

“I’ll be fine. Really, I will,” Daphne insisted.

“Trust me, you’re going to lose this argument,” Rainbow Dash said to Daphne. “Better to just get it over with and accept.”

“I’d have to inform my parents.” Daphne tried one last objection.

"Simplicity itself,” Rarity said, turning to the guard. “Please be so kind as to inform her parents of the change in plans.”

“Yes ma’am.” The guard saluted sharply before trotting away to deliver the message.

Bon Bon had been relieved when Lodestone had glided into the room and roosted next to Hedwig on the white owl’s perch. She had, however, not been prepared for the torrent of ponies that flowed from his pouch once she said the release phrase.

“I see you found our lost foal,” Bon Bon said to Lyra as the green mare picked herself up off the floor. “And everypony else’s.”

“Sorry Bon Bon; we had to collect them all from Canterlot. They were doing their level best to collapse the economy.”

Bon Bon stared at Lyra. “The scary thing is I can’t tell if you are joking or not.”

“Yeah . . . about that . . .” Rainbow Dash said.

Bon Bon face-hoofed. “You know what? Unless this is an emergency, it can wait.”

“Does the Crusaders owning half of Canterlot count as an emergency?” Rainbow asked.


“Then we’re good,” Applejack said.

Bon Bon sighed before directing her attention to Harry. “You do remember that we have a dinner appointment with your aunt?” she asked with a hint of disappointment. “I need you to go to your trunk and get a suitable out . . .”

That was as far as she got before she found herself with a face full of filly. Acutely aware of the weight grasping behind her head, Bon Bon stared into a pair of orange eyes.

“Yer taking him where?” asked the filly coldly.

Speechless, Bon Bon blinked in surprise.

“Apple Bloom! Get down this instant,” Applejack snapped. “Yer being rude.”

Apple Bloom ignored the older farm pony and continued the staring contest.

“Harry Potter’s aunt wants a chance to apologize for everything she did to him,” Lyra said. “Don’t worry, me and Bonnie are going to be there with him.”

“Ah’m sorry Bon Bon. Ah don’t know what got into 'er. She normally listens better than this.” Applejack trotted forward to claim the smallest Apple.

“Ah’m going with.” Apple Bloom refused to release her hold even as Applejack tugged on the scruff of her neck and only succeeded in dragging Bon Bon a few steps forward.

“Yer going home an' getting a lickin’ is where you are going.” Applejack said around a mouthful of red mane, still tugging.

“Ah’m going with.” There was nothing in Apple Bloom’s tone that hinted that her words were anything but a statement of fact.

“And that,” Rainbow Dash said, “is why she is alpha mare . . . er, filly.”

Applejack sighed and released her grip. “We are having a talk when you get back.”

Emma Granger smiled when Lodestone landed next to her own owl on the elaborate perch in the family room. “I was starting to get worried,” she said, tapping the bird’s pouch with her wand. “Ex dimittere.”

Soon, the family room was filled with ponies.

“Looks like you brought half of their class,” Emma noted, counting the foals on the floor and the pair who had taken up residence on her ceiling.

“Yes.” Lyra got to her hooves. “They spent an eventful day in Canterlot. We were hoping they could use your floo to make their ways home.”

“Of course,” Emma said. “We’ve plenty of powder, though I know for a fact that Dean doesn’t have a connection near his home. I’ll call him and his sisters a cab. Apple Bloom can be owled directly to Applejack.”

“Ah’m here to keep an eye on Harry Potter,” Apple Bloom said.

“Oh?” Emma said. “I suppose we could manage that. You’re close enough in size to Hermione that you can wear one of her dresses.”

“A cab is too expensive,” Dean said. “We can take the bus.”

“I’m not sending children home on a bus at this hour. Besides, there’s not a direct route,” Emma said sternly. “I’d take you myself if we weren’t on a schedule. A cab will have to do.”

“The knight bus isn’t that bad,” Luna said, hanging from the ceiling and still wearing her welding glasses. “It wouldn’t take all night either.”

“Night bus?” Emma asked, looking up.

“I’ll show you,” Luna said, dropping from the ceiling and changing in time to make a perfect two-point landing. “We just have to go out front. It gets messy if you summon it in the house.”

“Emma Granger, you remember Bon Bon, my partner?” Lyra said standing up in human form.

“Hello, Bon Bon.” Emma said, following the foals turning into children as they exited the room. “I do hope you are going to enjoy your first foray into being human.”

“Hello, Emma Granger. I’ve been human long enough for Rarity to make me a dress,” Bon Bon said, also standing on her human feet and wearing an understatedly elegant cream-colored outfit, “but I am looking forward to my first human meal.”

“Are you going to be all right eating meat?” Emma asked as the front door was opened and the children filed out.

“I’ve been practicing with pork bought from the Apple Farm,” Bon Bon said confidently. “And fish from the market; we do have a good-sized population of pegasai who love eating fish.”

“She’ll be fine.” Lyra insisted. “I got used to it myself, after all.”

“What are they doing?” Emma asked, watching the children stop at the curb and Luna raising her wand. There was a loud bang, and suddenly there was a deformed purple bus parked in front of her house.

“Sweet Celestia!” Bon Bon cried out.

“Eh, that is more impressive than the red ones in London,” Lyra admitted. “Nice bit of spellwork, too.”

“It’s . . . it's three decks high,” Emma stammered. “A stiff wind would see it tipping over.”

“Are we seriously considering letting the foals ride in that?” Bon Bon said, aghast.

The three women rushed toward the vehicle as Luna, Dean, and his sisters were climbing aboard.

“You sure you won’t come with us?” Luna was asking of Neville when they arrived.

“Nah,” Neville said, pointing over his shoulder. “We’ll take the floo, it’s faster.”

“And safer,” Hermione added.

“Here now,” the driver said testily. “I’ll have you know: the knight bus is perfectly safe.”

“It’s a heart attack waiting to happen, is what it is,” Hermione said, remembering her ride on it with Moody.

“We have a supply of potions on hand for just that eventuality,” the driver informed her. “Want one? They’re twelve sickles each.”

On quiet Privet Drive in the quaint village of Little Whinging, one rotund boy was seeing red. Everything was wrong in the world. Nothing made sense anymore, and somehow it was the freak’s fault.

He had been back from Smeltings Academy for two whole days now, and they had been the most horrible days of his life. His parents must have been replaced by changelings; they looked the same, but they behaved completely different. Dudley didn’t know what was the worst change. His mother had flatly refused to let him have thirds at supper his first night back. It was his favorite meal, but his mother wouldn’t let him have a third helping! Well, he had done what he had always done when he didn’t get his way. He threw a temper tantrum. Then, instead of giving him what he wanted, his mother had sent him to his room! For the first time in his life, he had been sent to his room! The injustice was stifling. It was deserving of a proper fit. So, he did just that, sending toys flying to crash into the walls. He would let his displeasure be known.

It should have worked. He should have gotten what he wanted then. Yet, for some reason, he did not get the third helping he so clearly deserved. What he got was a chair in the kitchen, facing the corner. Never before had he been subjected to such torture. It had been dreadful.

Things went further downhill the next day. When he had complained that his precious new remote-controlled airplane model had been broken the night before and need to be replaced, he had been informed that, no, it wasn’t getting replaced and that he needed to learn to have respect for what he had been given. That was patently unfair; it hadn’t even been his fault it got broken in the first place. It was his parents’ fault for sending him to his room without thirds. The injustice brought hot tears and another fit. That, in turn, resulted in his being confined to his room for most of the day. Worse yet, he could not properly let his resentment be known since he knew it would mean sitting in the corner yet again. He found he badly wanted to avoid another timeout. Instead, he spent the day angrily tearing his model airplane into small pieces. It didn’t matter; it was broken anyway.

The real blow had come just an hour ago. He had to dress smartly for dinner guests. The guests would include the freak, who would, thankfully, no longer be living with them. When his mother told him, he had sensed something . . . not right. She seemed . . . sad? That was the missing puzzle piece; this had to be the freak's fault. The freak must have done something unspeakable, leaving Dudley and his family to suffer.

It was the pig tail all over again.

By the time the guests had arrived, he had been stewing in anger for what seemed like an eternity. His mother getting down on her knees to hug the freak had been appalling to watch. Noticing that his father had tears trickling from his eyes had been even more so.

Something was very wrong here.

The people who had come with the freak only added to his sense of misgiving. Oh, the man and woman introduced as dentists seemed normal enough, but the other two women were not the type that his parents would normally invite over for supper. They both had two-tone hair in colors that his father had once told him marked them as unsavory types. He had no idea why they were even allowed into the house, let alone invited.

As disturbing as the two jezebels were, they could not match the sheer annoyance of the two girls who stuck close to his freaky cousin. The one with brown hair was common-looking enough. Like any geeky girl he had ever seen before, she’d be easy enough to drive away from the freak. She surely would flee at the first hint of danger. The second girl, on the other hand, wasn’t fooling him. The pink bow in her fiery red hair and the adorably frilly pink dress did nothing to hide her character from him. As easily as he could sense fear, Dudley could also recognize the aura of a predator. He knew in his heart that if he bullied her with his gang, she would exact a painful, and possibly permanent, vengeance on them all. Neither girl had left the freak's side, even when his mother had been hugging that abomination.

Dudley would just have to wait for the right opportunity to let his cousin know his place. Things would be put right.

Daphne was loath to admit that going with the Gryffindors to Ponyville was far more enjoyable than dutifully waiting in the palace suite, alone, for her parents to return. The colts and fillies whom she had met at Pinkie's party had all taken her appearance as a human girl in stride. Although they were brimming with curiosity, they had been more interested in watching the semifinals of the first annual George dodging contest than bombarding Daphne with questions. The girl had to admit that the speed and agility that the contestants had displayed had been exhilarating. The contest was almost as entertaining as watching the occasional stallion try to strike up a conversation with Sweetie's pet.

Eventually, Mrs. Belle had come to collect ‘George’ and to take the girls to supper. She treated the trunk as if it were practically alive.

After freshening up in a rather well-appointed bathroom, Daphne found herself seated at the table with her two hostesses.

“I do hope you like purslane and dandelion souffle,” Mrs. Belle said, levitating a plate in front of her.

“Um.” Daphne said, not wanting to insult the unicorn as Sweetie’s pet tore into the plate in front of her. “I don't know if humans can eat that. Our gardener says they're weeds.”

Sweetie Belle shrugged. “Just turn into a pony. You’ll love it.”

Daphne looked doubtfully at the meal before shrugging and shrinking, transforming into the pale-yellow unicorn her little sister had found irresistible. She placed her hooves on the table and took a cautious sniff. A look of surprise crossed her face and she crossed her eyes trying to see her own horn.

“Is something the matter, darling?” Mrs. Belle asked, taking a fork in her magic.

Daphne gasped looking at her hoof as if seeing it for the first time. “Astoria has my ring!”

The dining room table in 4 Privet Drive was more crowded than Harry could ever remember. This was the first time he could remember being allowed to actually eat at the table, rather than skulking in the kitchen like a scullery maid. The novelty of the situation could not, however, distract him from the sense of foreboding he felt as tension blanketed the room. He could not help but wonder whether his young escorts could read his mood; he was sure that if they had been using benches, both Hermione and Apple Bloom would have been practically sitting in his lap.

“You don’t have to look so worried.” Lyra broke the silence as Aunt Petunia went into the kitchen to start bringing dishes to the table. “We aren’t trying to get rid of you or anything like that. This is only a visit.”

Harry looked at her and gave a weak smile, acknowledging that he understood.

“Boy . . .” Uncle Vernon said gruffly. “Harry, listen to her. Now that I’m in my right mind, I can see how we treated you was appalling. The magic . . .” Vernon said the word with undisguised loathing. “. . . the old freak used on us made us act in ways that no decent folk would consider. It was not normal. It was disgraceful and shameful. It made us treat you like dirt and made us raise Dudley in a manner that will take some time to correct, if it is even possible.”

“Freaky magic is why you've been acting so strange since I got home?” Dudley asked from where he was sitting to his father’s right.

“It . . .” Uncle Vernon refused to say the word. “. . . made us hate Harry and neglect you. From now on, things are going to be made right. We . . .” He included Harry in a sweeping gesture. “. . . are family. It is past time we treat each other as such. Harry may not live here anymore, but he is always welcome, without reservation.”

“But,” Dudley pouted, “I want things to go back to how they were.”

“I know, dear.” Aunt Petunia came to the table carrying a covered platter. “But how we were before was wrong. The time has come for us to heal and move on.”

“The way things were was perfect.” Dudley’s voice rose in volume with his protest.

“No, they weren’t,” Aunt Petunia said sharply. “For some unexplained reason, I was made to hate my nephew. Even with the curses removed, I cannot stop hating him. Harry has done nothing to deserve either that hate or the way he was treated under this roof.”

“But, he’s a freak!” Dudley all but shouted.

“He is not a freak!” Hermione yelled back and Apple Bloom narrowed her eyes menacingly.

“Hermione!” Her father snapped.

“But.” Hermione sent her father a defiant look.

“We know,” Emma said. “It’s not his fault. You can’t expect him to change overnight.”

“Dudley, you’re being rude,” Uncle Vernon said forcefully.

“But, dad!” Dudley whined in a tone more suited for a five-year-old.

“No 'buts',” Vernon said before turning to his guests. “I’m sorry.”

“It’s not your fault either,” Lyra stated with unshed tears in her eyes.

“Have you,” Bon Bon ventured, stopped to consider her words, then finished. “Have you taken him to the hospital to check for residual spells?”

“Our hospitals can do nothing for magic,” Aunt Petunia said bringing the last dish to the table. “The magical police said that they removed everything they could find.”

“That can’t be as good as seeing a medical professional,” Bon Bon said. “Tell you what, why don’t we take you three to Ponyville’s hospital tomorrow, just to be sure.”

“I have to work tomorrow,” Uncle Vernon said, “but I don’t see any reason why my wife and son shouldn’t go.”

“Harry also sees Mending Psyche once a week. I think having you three along for a visit or two might help,” Lyra added.

“This is too serious to discuss before we eat. Save the depressing talk until after supper.” Uncle Vernon broke the train of thought. “My wife has been working all afternoon to prepare a wonderful feast in the spirit of mending what none here at the table were responsible for breaking. I, for one, look forward to cheating on my diet.” With those words he swept the domed silver cover off the centerpiece. There was much oohing and awing over the effort Aunt Petunia had put into the meal.

“What’s that?” Bon Bon asked, scrunching her nose at the strange smells emanating from the dish.

“Beef Wellington.” Apple Bloom salivated at the sight. “We haven’t had that since our first night at the Weasley’s.”

“What’s Beef Wellington?” Bon Bon asked. Her first question not in any way answered.

“Hoo boy!” Lyra muttered, preparing a long-winded explanation.

In a quiet cottage, far away from Little Whinging, a young man sprang to his feet when the anguished cry reached his ears. "Meat is MURDER!"

"Aunt Jane!" he gasped, "Should we call the police?"

Shaking her head, the elderly spinster replied, "No need, Raymond. When the wind is just right, you can hear the cry of the loons."

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