The Only One

Chapter 2

Dobby and I arrived at the ward line of the house and lands. We could see St. George’s Channel off in the background behind the house. There was a soft breeze coming off the water that smelled wonderful and fresh.

Dobby was still hanging on to me as we walked forward past the wards. It felt like going through a wet blanket as we passed through them. It didn’t stop us but it felt like it slowed us down slightly. The house was nice looking, although it looked like a big 3D rectangle with two floors. It also looked like it had been updated and remodeled recently, at least on the outside. Of course, that could be the wards keeping it that way. It was painted white with dark red trim for the shutters, eaves, and window frames, even the front door was red.

When I looked at the doorknocker and where to place my hand, I saw that the knocker was made out of brass and looked like the head of a golden gryphon. I placed my hand over the knocker and felt a prick on my palm. I flinched and started to move my hand back automatically but I couldn’t. My hand was stuck there.

Next, I felt my hand being healed and then it was released from the knocker. As soon as I had my hand back, the door opened on its own allowing us entry. At least I thought it did. I took a couple steps inside the house but when I looked down Dobby was no longer beside me. Turning back, I saw him standing just outside the doorway.

“What’s wrong Dobby?”

“Dobby cannot enter, Harry Potter sir. The wards do not allow it.”

“How do I fix it?”

“State who you are and that you are the new owner then tell the wards that Dobby needs to be added to the access list.”

Turning back to the house I said, “I, Harry James Potter, am the new owner of this house at 312 Mockingbird Lane. The Potter family house elf named Dobby needs to be added to the access list so he can come and go as he pleases.”

“Dobby was added”appeared on a large mirror on the wall close to the front door.

I looked down at Dobby who took a step forward into the house and smiled.

“Dobby, is there a way to see who all has access to this house?”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir. Just ask the house to show you the ward access list. You can remove or add someone to the list once it is shown to you.”

“Please show me the ward access list.”

A long list of names appeared on the large mirror. Most of the names I didn’t even recognize. A lot of them had the last name of Potter though. There looked to be a couple of house elf names on there as well. I saw my mum and dad’s names on the list along with mine and then the last one was Dobby’s. I asked the wards to remove everyone except Dobby and myself. The list was suddenly a lot shorter.

Moving on further into the foyer there was a large fireplace big enough to stand in and what looked like floo powder in a bowl on the mantle. I stopped.

“Dobby?”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir?”

“Would there be a separate ward list for the floo?”

“Yes, the floo would have a separate list, Harry Potter sir, but a person would have to be on the house ward access list too in order to gain full access into the house. The floo access list only allows them to use the floo. It helps with preventing unwanted guests arriving via the floo but it also helps if you have small children. If they are not on the floo list then they can’t use the floo to get away from home on their own.”

“That makes sense. Let me see if I’ve got this figured out. Please show me the ward list for the floo.”

Over the mantle was a large scenic picture of an old ship sailing on the Channel and a long list of names appeared on it very similar to the other list, except there were no elves on this list. Once again, I removed all the names and added just myself. Elves do not use the floo so Dobby was left off.

“Is this fireplace still active on the floo network?” I asked

“Yes,”appeared.

“What is the floo designation for this address?”

“Potter Crest,”appeared.

“Potter Crest,” I read aloud.

“Dobby, are there any other access lists I need to edit that you can think of?”

“No, Harry Potter sir. That should be all.”

“Alright then, let’s look this place over before you take me back to my room at Privet Drive. I will need to pack up and get my aunt and uncle to sign the form. We need to make sure we have everything we need for bedding, running water, toiletries, and food if we are going to stay here tonight. We can pick up what we’re missing after we visit Gringotts again.”

“Dobby can check all of these things quickly, Harry Potter sir. Is that what you want Dobby to do?”

“I’ll tell you what, Dobby, why don’t you check everything your way so you can see what we need to buy quickly, and I’ll just take a tour of the house while you do that. If I need you, I’ll call you. If you need me then call and I’ll get there as soon as I can.”

“Yes sir, Harry Potter sir,” he said and popped away.

I’m not sure how he knew where to pop off to but there was a lot about house elf magic I didn’t understand. The first thing I noticed was there were electric lights, switches, and plugs on the walls. I tried a few of the light switches but nothing came on. I wondered if maybe the bill just hadn’t been paid. I decided to keep looking.

Kurlig was correct. There was some dust but no problems that I could see with the house. The lounge was huge and comfortable looking with two large leather sofas in a dark red tone, two golden brown leather chairs, coffee table, end tables, and a large area rug over oak wood floors. A standard sized fireplace accented the room.

Across the way was another lounge but it contained an old entertainment system, an old VCR, and an old TV. On one wall was a mini-bar and the room was full of squishy furniture. It looked like a great room to relax but obviously, the electronics would need to be updated. Maybe a large flat screen TV, DVD player, and an updated stereo system for starters.

In a room next door were a dark brown grand piano and a billiards table along with some other games of which I was not familiar. I would have to spend some time in there to figure things out. It just might be fun. On the other side was a decent sized library full of books with a small table for four located in the center. Next to the library was a nice office with a large mahogany desk that had a plush, dark brown leather desk chair sitting in behind it.

Everywhere I looked was great woodwork reaching halfway up the walls and the upper half was painted a different color for each room. The formal lounge was red, the entertainment room was blue, the music/game room was green, and the library and office were gold. The foyer had a seamless wallpaper with vertical stripes of red and gold. All the ceilings were an off white.

The floors were all solid oak, stained a light brown, with a generous use of area rugs spread around. When I reached the kitchen, the floors became a cream-colored stone. It was a very nice, solidly built house.

I saw Dobby in the kitchen tallying things and vanishing any food too old to keep in the rather large pantry off the kitchen. He was also cleaning as he went, removing all the dust with a wave of his hand. I saw a nice container on the kitchen counter in the corner. It looked like something good to keep money in for Dobby to use when he needed to buy food for the pantry or any other household items.

When I removed the lid and looked inside, I saw a few galleons and some sickles at the bottom. Evidently, someone else had the same idea. Taking out my sack of galleons, I put a couple of handfuls in the container.

“Dobby, this is the container for you to use when we need food or items for the house. It had just a few galleons and sickles in it so this is what it was used for before. If you run out let me, know. We will likely be spending a good bit up front buying everything we need to get this place in order.”

“Dobby will be finished with his checks soon and can go buy food if Harry Potter sir wants him too.”

“You do what you need to do, Dobby. If you need kitchen utensils, pots, pans, or other items like that then pick those up along with the food. Pick up some bed linens too, if we need it, towels, etc. Whatever we need, get it. Also, please pick up a case of butterbeer for me. I like it cold.”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir.”

“I have an idea. Why don’t you finish up and go buy whatever we need that you know of right now that will get us through at least a few days. I’m going to be a while touring all the rooms and familiarizing myself with the house. We do need to leave before too long though to get back to Privet Drive so I can take care of that last bit. After that we can stay here and concentrate on the house.”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir. Dobby has very much work and cleaning to do to get the house ready for the Great Harry Potter.”

Thinking of the two house elf names I removed from the list I asked, “Dobby, do you think I should take on another elf to help out or can you handle it all by yourself?”

“Dobby can do it all and would like to do it all but Dobby also knows that Winky would like a family to serve. Winky does not like being free like Dobby. Winky is also a very good cook and a hard working elf. She would be a great addition to the Potter Family elves.”

“Very well, Dobby. I would like you to go get Winky after we get back to Gringotts. I will ask her if she wants to join our little family. If she says yes then you can bring me back here and I will add her to the ward access list before I call her home.”

“Thank you, Harry Potter sir. Winky will be as happy as Dobby to serve the Great Harry Potter. Dobby and Winky will not let you down.”

“I know that Dobby, and I thank you for your help. I’m going to continue my tour now. You do what you need to do and go if you need to go. I’ll call you when I’m ready. We can finish up when we get back and I’ll be able to help too since I’ll be able to use my wand,” I said with a smile.

Dobby nodded happily, as I walked off.

I didn’t see a door to the back garden anywhere so thought that was odd. I went on past the kitchen and found a utility room that contained a washer and dryer. They were both plugged into electrical outlets, another reason to get the electricity going again. Behind the utility room was a short door that opened up into a nice large room that had a couple of kid size beds and facilities for house elves.

A regular sized door existed on the other side of the utility room that opened up to another door across the way, but between the doors, I saw a landing with some stairs going down to the left. The other door, lead to a garage. The garage was larger than it should have been, or really needed to be from what I could see, but it held three old fancy cars in it that looked to be dusty but in great condition. I figured I could check them out later.

Right now, I wanted to see where the stairs lead to going down. From the street there appeared to be just two levels and the one I was on would be ground level or level one with the upstairs being the second floor. Maybe it was just a basement.

When I reached the bottom of the stairs, I opened another door that was on my right. It opened into a large room that seemed to serve as a patio of sorts, but it was completely closed in. The ceiling was at least twenty-five feet up and the floor was made of rock but smoothed to the texture of indoor concrete. There were a few chairs and small tables sitting around in no particular pattern.

There was also a large window that took up one whole wall facing the water and the view was fantastic. I could see where there was an incline down to the beach. The house must have been built on the side of a hill. Had I really looked out the windows on the back of the house upstairs, instead of just glancing, I would have noticed that.

The “patio” as I was calling it was apparently underneath the garage. There were three additional doors leading off the patio on the same wall I came out of and three doors on the back wall. The large windowed wall facing the water held one set of wooden French doors leading to the outside. There were no doors on the other wall but that should be the side of the house and part of the steep incline. It was full of cabinets and drawers instead.

Methodically, I started checking the doors starting with the one on my left in the back. It was simply a large storage room for outside items. It contained a grill for outside cooking, some yard chairs, water hoses, and various tools, plus miscellaneous items for outside use.

Moving over to the second door on the back wall, I found a long hallway. There was a light switch but of course, it didn’t work. Realizing I still could not use magic yet, I came back out and looked into some of the cabinets along the wall in the room until I found two flashlights. Luckily, they were magical and still worked. Muggle batteries that old would have died long ago.

Taking one of the flashlights, I went down the dark hallway until I came to another door. I opened it and found a large room that contained a massive generator. It looked to be gas powered but the gas tank was of course empty. I saw the On/Off switch and it was currently turned off. Figuring it wouldn’t hurt to try I flipped the switch.

Low and behold, it started right up only it made no sound. It was strange for a machine that large not to make any noise when running. Obviously, it was working off magic. When it started, lights came on in the room and I could see that the walls were covered in runes. I assume some were to keep the generator quiet and perhaps others were to ventilate the room with outside air. It certainly didn’t smell bad or stale inside the room.

I left turning off the light and shutting the door. I flipped the switch on that end of the hallway and lights came on. I didn’t need the flashlight any longer. When I got to the end of the long hall, I flipped the hall light back off and shut the other door.

The next door on the back wall contained a full loo with a separate tub and shower, only the shower was huge with twelve different shower heads for people to use at the same time. Perhaps it was for washing off the sand from the beach. No waiting, I assumed.

Continuing my exploration, I found behind one door on the sidewall that led to under the house, a large training room that contained soft mats and dummies. There were all sorts of various weapons and armor hanging on the walls. This looked promising. The second door revealed a nice indoor swimming pool that needed a lot of maintenance. Perhaps the extra showers were also for washing off the chlorine from the pool. The third door was just a broom closet underneath the stairs I had come down.

Deciding it was time to check the upstairs I went back up noticing Dobby was no longer in the kitchen and went to the nice grand staircase that lead to the second floor. At the top of the stairs was a long hallway that had three bedrooms on each side of it. Starting at the stairs the floors were all carpeted in a red and gold pattern and each room contained queen size beds. The first two bedrooms on each side shared a full-sized loo between them while the last bedroom on each side had their own private loo.

At the very end of the hall was a large set of double doors that lead to the master bedroom. It was quite large with two huge walk-in closets, each easily as big as my bedroom at Privet Drive. The floor was also carpeted and the room had a nice large loo with a shower for two, and a bath big enough for six. The linen closets were full of matching towels and accessories that appeared to be in good condition. They likely needed a good cleaning though.

The bed was a four-poster king size with intricate detail carved into the wood. There were matching nightstands on each side of the bed with lamps. All in all a very nice house I thought. I believed I could live here well enough.

I went back downstairs and found Dobby had arrived back in the kitchen.

“Dobby, are you ready to go so we can take care of this last bit?”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir. Dobby is just putting your butterbeer in the cooler for you sir so it will be nice and cold when we get back.”

“Thanks, Dobby! Can you take us straight to my bedroom at Privet Drive?”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir. Just hold my hand.”

I held onto Dobby’s hand and we disappeared immediately landing back in my room at my relatives’ house. I saw Hedwig in her cage resting so I woke her up to explain that we would be living somewhere else very soon. I asked Dobby to pack my trunk while I went down to see the Dursleys.

When I reached the bottom of the stairs and entered the lounge, they all turned to look at me, even Dudley. I could tell from his face that they had filled him in. We were just staring at each other for a second before my uncle broke the silence.

“Well, boy? Any good news?”

“Yes, Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia, you too, Dudley. I have very good news. I just need you two to sign this form that will allow me to be emancipated. I was told that once I have your signatures then it will be automatic to get it approved.”

“It can’t be that easy,” said Uncle Vernon.

“I assure you it is in the magical world. I had the same doubt but I was told that since I’m only a year away from adulthood and because I’m the last remaining Potter, that it’s quite easy once I have your signatures. You are my legal guardians after all and they will not question it if you agree that I can take care of myself.”

Uncle Vernon looked at me as if he didn’t believe me.

“Look, it’s just a form and you are welcome to read it over carefully before you sign but just know that after you do I will be out of your lives for good. In fact, I’ll be packing up and leaving today right after you sign it. I have to get it back to them so they can submit it.”

I handed it over to my uncle and watched as he and Aunt Petunia read it over carefully. Dudley was still just staring at me. It was just a form so there was not a lot to read. It basically said that I was the last remaining heir to House Potter, and it also said “Petition for Emancipation” at the top of the form and there were lines marked clearly for legal guardians where they were required to sign.

After a couple minutes, Petunia went and grabbed a pen so they both could sign. When they completed it, Aunt Petunia handed it back to me.

“What do we say if they come looking for you?”

“Just tell them the truth, Aunt Petunia. I asked for your permission to be emancipated so I could live elsewhere and you granted it. They don’t know yet that I am doing this so they should not be coming around anytime soon. By the time they do I will be hidden away where they will not find me until I’m ready to find them.”

“Do you already have a place to live?” asked Dudley.

“I do but I dare not tell you guys where since my minders will be wanting that information once they find out I am no longer here.”

“So you’re just going to leave? Just like that?” Dudley asked.

“Yes, Dud. Just like that. I have it all very well planned out. Bye everyone. It’s been real but it certainly hasn’t been any fun.”

I turned and started back toward the stairs then stopped and turned around.

“Oh, by the way, if any of my minders show up and tell you to leave because it’s not safe then you should listen to them. Voldemort and his followers are killing people again and they will kill you without a second thought. Just be careful.”

Leaving some shocked Dursleys behind, I turned and walked back up to my room. Dobby had me all packed up so I checked under the loose floorboard in my room, the closet, under the bed, and in the wardrobe. All clean. I locked Hedwig’s cage door and picked her up gently.

“Dobby I think we should take Hedwig and my trunk to the house first then we should go over to Gringotts. Ready?”

“Ready, Harry Potter sir.”

Dobby grabbed my hand and we were off. When we landed in the foyer, I let Hedwig out of her cage and told her she could explore if she wanted to. I then told her we would be back soon. Dobby grabbed my hand again and he took us straight to Diagon Alley next to Gringotts. We entered quickly and asked for Kurlig again.

Kurlig came out and led us back to his office where he took the signed form and started filling in all the blanks. I sent Dobby off to fetch Winky while I waited. It was only a few seconds before Dobby popped back in again with Winky right beside him.

Winky looked like she was about to cry. She was trembling.

“Hi, Winky. It’s so good to see you again. Have you been well?”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir. Winky is doing fine,” she answered looking dejected.

“Do you like working at Hogwarts or would you prefer to work for a family again?”

“Harry Potter sir, Winky does not like being free. Winky is ashamed to be free. Winky wants to be a proper house elf and serve a family again.”

“Would you like to work for the Potter family and become a Potter Family elf, just like Dobby?”

“Yes, Master Harry Potter sir. Winky would very much like to be a Potter Family elf,” she said perking up.

“I think I know the answer to this but I must ask anyway. Would you prefer to be paid or do you want to be bound to the House of Potter?”

“Winky wishes to be bound, Harry Potter sir.”

“Very well, Winky.”

I took Winky through the same mini-ritual that Dobby and I did. Our golden light was almost as bright as the one I did with Dobby. When we were all done and Winky was so happy she could hardly sit still, I turned back to Kurlig to see where we stand.

“How many free elves do you know Harry?”

“This is probably it. If I need any more, then Dobby and Winky will have to find them for me.”

“Are you ready to sign?”

“It’s ready for me now?”

“I told you it was just a formality with the signatures in place.”

Kurlig turned the form around to me and pointed to the line where I needed to sign. After I gave him my signature, he did a couple of things to the form and said we were done. He then handed me my pocket edition in case I was stopped when using magic in public.

“Is there anything else you need Harry? Do you want to see your family vault now?”

“Yes, I do have something I need but I don’t have time today to see the vault. I will have to return tomorrow for that. Can you please have someone come out and place the Fidelius on my property? If you can give me an idea of the time now, or via owl, when I should expect them that would be much appreciated. I have a few errands I need to run tomorrow and perhaps on Monday as well but at no particular time so I can be there anytime your person is coming.”

“Let me check real quick.”

Kurlig called in another goblin who he spoke to for a second in Gobbledygook before the other goblin left.

“Harry, we will be sending one of our experienced and trusted wizards to perform this charm for you. He works directly for Gringotts. His name is Jim Willoughby, he’s 62 years of age, and he should be there around 10am tomorrow morning. Since you will be the secret keeper, he will have no knowledge of your house or its location once he has completed the spell. He is also bonded with Gringotts under a wizard’s oath and is forbidden to discuss his work with anyone except his direct supervisor. Due to the oath, he cannot be bought or coerced. Will that work for you?”

“Perfect. Thanks Kurlig. Do you mind if Dobby takes me home from here? It will be safer. I also need to go home first so I can add Winky to the wards before I call her. Can she stay here for just another minute after I leave?”

“Certainly, Harry. That will not be a problem at all.”

“Thanks. Winky I will call you shortly so you can join us. Should only be a minute.”

Dobby took us back home and I went to the entrance immediately.

“I, Harry James Potter, request that you grant the Potter Family house elf named Winky access to come and go as she pleases.”

On the mirror words appeared.Winky was added.

“Show me the ward access list please.”

Harry James Potter Dobby
Winky

“Winky? Please come home.”

Pop!

Winky appeared next to me and hugged my legs immediately as the names faded from view on the mirror.

“Thank you, Winky. I’m glad you’re happy. If you look around you will see that there is plenty to do. Please check with Dobby on what he’s figured out so you guys can tackle the most important stuff first.”

“It’s dinner time, Harry Potter sir. Can Winky fix you some food, Master?”

“Yes, that would be lovely. I am a little hungry, but Winky? Please don’t call me master. It makes me very uncomfortable. I’m alright with you calling me Harry if you want, but if you aren’t then you can call me sir if that’s easier for you. If it helps you can think of me more as your employer rather than your master, but I would much prefer if you thought of me as your friend.”

Winky’s eyes misted up for a second before she mastered her emotions.

“Yes, Harry Potter sir” she said with a smile. “Winky will stick with sir and will have dinner ready shortly.” With that, she popped off.

I was amazed at the difference in Winky’s attitude after we bonded. She was so sad before but now she was beyond happy and ready to please.

“Locomotor trunk”

I picked up Hedwig’s cage and floated my trunk up to the master bedroom. It felt good to use magic outside of Hogwarts. I was anxious to start training and take a look at the Potter Family vault. There’s no telling what treasures I would find in there. When I reached my new bedroom, I saw all the dust and grime I had seen before but now that I could use magic outside of school, I could easily clean it up.

I placed Hedwig’s cage on a table and put the trunk down near my bed. I then took out my wand but realized I was not sure what spell was needed to clean this up properly. I had never really studied cleaning spells. As I was contemplating that, Hedwig landed on my shoulder.

“Hey, girl. Like our new digs?”

“Hoot!”

“I’ll take that as a yes.”

Hedwig rubbed her head against mine affectionately.

“Did you need to go outside? I can open a window for you.”

“Hoot.”

“I’m pretty sure that was a yes too.”

I walked over to some curtains that went from floor to ceiling assuming they were covering a large window but when I moved the curtains back, it revealed French doors and a balcony overlooking the water. I opened the doors to let Hedwig out and to bring in some nice fresh air.

Hedwig took off flying while I breathed in deeply. Remembering my cleaning dilemma, I took off back downstairs to ask my trusted elves for their spell knowledge. However, when I asked Dobby to teach me some cleaning spells he just shook his head, grabbed my hand, and led me to the office where he waved his hand using a powerful spell to remove all the dust then sat me down in the desk chair.

“Harry Potter sir has too many important things to do and should not be doing Dobby and Winky’s work. Dobby and Winky will clean the house while Harry Potter sir looks over his important papers from Gringotts.”

Dobby handed me the report from Kurlig about the contents of my vaults, popped out and returned with a cold butterbeer for me.

“But Dobby, I have to learn these spells sometime and since I now own a house then I can help keep it clean. I just want to help.”

“Harry Potter is a great wizard and a very powerful wizard,” he explained patiently. “If he started waving his wand to clean the house then Dobby and Winky would not have enough work to do. We like to work and clean. This dusty old house is a house elf’s dream come true. Please do not take away our jobs, Harry Potter sir.”

“Oh, sorry, I don’t want to do that. Sorry about that, Dobby.”

Dobby smiled and popped away. After he left, I decided that I would find the spells and learn them on my own. A bachelor like myself really needs to know how to clean up after himself. What if I were to spill my butterbeer on the desk or on my shirt? I should be able to clean it right up. I just wouldn’t tell my house elves about it. Sneaky, I know.

I went ahead and read over the report from Kurlig like Dobby wanted me to do while enjoying my cold butterbeer he brought me. I found out that while I wasn’t filthy rich, I was very comfortable and could live without working if I wanted, especially since I had no house payment or any regularly occurring bills of any kind. Moreover, with magic it was just easier. I had made it through most of the report when Dobby showed back up to let me know that dinner was ready.

Good, I thought. I needed to discuss a few things with Dobby and Winky that I’d been pondering over while I thought about our future here. I made my way to the dining room where a nice Hogwarts type feast was ready and waiting for me. Only it was in smaller amounts.

“Wow, you guys went all out. Thanks!”

When I sat down, they remained standing.

“Aren’t you guys going to sit down with me and eat?”

“Oh no, Harry Potter sir,” replied Winky while Dobby shook his head. “That would not be proper for a house elf.”

“Have you eaten dinner yet?”

“Dobby and Winky will eat later after Harry Potter sir has been taken care of,” replied Dobby.

“I see. Well, I have many important things to discuss with you guys and it would be easier and much more pleasant if you joined me at the table and ate. Do you think we could make an exception this time?”

They both looked hesitant and worried.

“I promise Dobby and Winky that I won’t think less of you if you do this for me. In fact, I will think better of you if you do this for me. Remember, I’m not some old pureblood wizard who believes in all the old traditions. I was raised in the Muggle world where equality is supposed to be afforded to everyone, not that the Dursleys ever did but that’s a different story.”

They still looked hesitant.

“Please join me? We have much to talk about and plans to develop.”

Dobby who knew me longer grabbed Winky’s hand and led her to the table, seating her to my immediate left while he went around and sat down to my immediate right. With a snap of his fingers, both he and Winky now had plates and silverware.

“Excellent! What can I get you guys?”

Winky and Dobby just glared at me.

“Okay, okay. I’ll stop pushing. You guys go first and I will get mine after you.”

“No, Harry Potter sir” said Winky. “Harry Potter will go first and Dobby and Winky will serve ourselves after you.”

“I see that compromise is in order. Very well, I can live with that.”

I served myself with a variety of nice foods adorning my plate, and then watched as Dobby and Winky served themselves. Once they were done and ready to eat, I took my first bite.

“Mm yum! That’s outstanding. My congratulations to the chef.”

Winky turned pink on her cheeks and took her first bite. After we had eaten a little bit I decided to plunge forward with my ideas.

“Alright, let’s discuss a few things while we finish this delicious meal. First of all, I trust you guys found the elf quarters behind the utility room?”

They both nodded.

“If that room is not satisfactory to you then you are welcome to choose any of the extra bedrooms upstairs.”

“No, Harry Potter sir” answered Dobby. “Our quarters are more than adequate for Dobby and Winky. Those are the best quarters Dobby has ever seen and we would be perfectly happy using them. It is bigger and better than what Dobby has had before.”

“Really? Is that the same for you Winky?”

Winky nodded.

“Good, that’s settled. Next item of business, I trust since you found your quarters that you noticed the two Muggle machines in the utility room. Do you know what those are used for?”

They both shook their heads.

“That is a washing machine and a dryer for your clothes. They wash and dry your clothes while you work on something else. Once we pick up some proper soap for the washing machine we can use it to wash our clothes then when it’s done you put them in the dryer so they can dry.”

“Dobby and Winky can use magic to clean clothes,” said Dobby.

“Okay, that’s fine but let me show you how it works sometime just in case you like it and can use it. It makes a Muggle’s life easier since they can’t use magic and it does a really good job of cleaning and leaving your clothes feeling and smelling fresh.”

They both nodded. We had finished eating by now so Winky waved her hand and everything was sent to the kitchen except our drinks.

“Another item,” I continued, “is what’s downstairs. Have you guys been down there?”

“Dobby went down there earlier but Winky has not been there yet.”

“Why don’t we go there now? I’ll meet you there in the big room, alright?”

Dobby nodded so I took off back to the utility room and down the stairs again. Dobby and Winky were already there when I opened the door.

“Okay, first. There is only one room down here that is priority for cleaning. I know you have already cleaned the foyer, office, kitchen, and dining room. Great job by the way. Next should be our sleeping areas and loos so we have a clean place to sleep tonight and a clean loo for a nice shower in the morning.”

They both nodded.

“Over here,” I indicated the training room while opening the door, “is what I will need cleaned fairly quickly. I have to start training very hard so I can protect myself better and take out some Death Eaters along the way. I have a lot of shopping and errands to run tomorrow so I will not necessarily need it for a couple more days but please put it high on the list after our sleeping areas and loos, of course.”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir,” they both replied at the same time.

“That was cute,” I said with a smile. “The other rooms down here can wait until you have the rest of the house upstairs cleaned up. The pool will be nice to have functioning again but I’m in no hurry for that at all. I’d rather have the entire upstairs cleaned first.”

“Yes, Harry Potter sir.” Only Dobby answered this time while Winky nodded.

“Now, do you guys know about electricity? Did you find the generator like I did, Dobby?”

Dobby nodded.

I took them down the hallway using the light switch so we could see. I showed and explained to them about the generator and how it provided electricity so the lights worked, along with the other electrical devices. They were impressed and liked the nice light it provided. I also explained about the light switches upstairs and how they can use them in all the rooms when they needed extra light. They liked that idea.

Going back upstairs I finally talked with them about wearing uniforms. Dobby’s outfit was outlandish and Winky’s was not much better than a dishrag.

“One last thing I wanted to talk to you two guys about is uniforms. Would you guys be okay with wearing proper uniforms for Potter family elves? If you are then I would like you two to come up with a proper design that has the Potter House crest on it. Looking nicer is very important to me which is why I will be spending a good bit of money tomorrow on clothes for myself.”

“You will let Winky and Dobby pick out our own Potter Family uniform?” asked Winky incredulously.

“Sure, I don’t know anything about it. I’m just a teenager. However, I would like final approval on your selections if you don’t mind. Please keep them somewhat conservative with blacks and grays but maybe a hint of color if that’s what you like. At some point in the future, we will likely have guests and Potter family house elves should look spiffy, don’t you think?”

They both nodded smiling up at me.

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