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Another snippet! Yet more Dursleys! - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
Another snippet! Yet more Dursleys!

By 1936, Horatio Dursley was the proud father of a son, Oswald, and was awaiting with impatience the birth of his second child.  This news had trickled back to Dursley town through the commercial community, as had the satisfying news that neither RA Lister nor Petters would deal with Grunnings so long as Horatio Dursley was employed by that firm.  Later in that year, the word came of just why – and for whom – it was that Horatio had named his son ‘Oswald’, when Horatio was mentioned in the press as a member of the British Union of Fascists.  He had been drawn to the new party by his overwhelming sense of victimisation, his inability to find fault in himself and his consequent presumption that every thwarted hope of his was attributable to the plots of others: he was a natural believer in conspiracy theories.  When to this was added the unofficial boycott of Grunnings by those he had betrayed and insulted, and all the upheavals of the Twenties and Thirties, from the General Strike to the Depression to the threat of war and the Abdication Crisis, it was no wonder that he became a radical.  When the blusterer and coward who so obsessively longed for a respectability that the circumstances of his birth had denied him in the town of his youth, saw his name in the public prints in relation to the Battle of Cable Street, it was equally no wonder that he abandoned his overt fascism, drew in his horns, and denied to his dying day that he was the Horatio Dursley in question.  He devoted himself instead to securing a place for his son Oswald at a very minor, Victorian boarding school with pretensions to being a public school, and to indulging his daughter beyond any bounds of reason.  And when war came, he managed to secure recognition of his Grunnings billet as being in an ‘essential industry’, and to avoid even the whisper of service.

Oswald Dursley, in turn, upon leaving Smeltings as unalloyed and unrefined dross, managed to evade any chance of being sent to Korea in the last months of that war, or, worse yet, Malaya or Aden, and did his National Service as quickly, safely, and sloppily as he could manage, and as profitably: the opportunities for a Pay Corps subaltern with no qualms about the black market were extremely lucrative in the BAOR.  He then hastened back to Blighty, home, and, if not beauty, a ‘successful’ marriage, and set about recreating as far as possible the tenor of Horatio’s life.

However, the same traits that had made Smeltings and the Army more than glad to see the back of him, blocked his ‘career’ with Grunnings.  He couldn’t be made redundant: his father and his mother’s father barred that possibility.  But not even they were fool enough to indulge him with responsibility.  He had entered upon his National Service as a subaltern, and he had left as a subaltern, distrusted by all and disdained by everyone.  The same was true of his years at Grunnings, in which he was given a sinecure – and left in it.  Like his father before him, he devoted himself instead to securing a place for his son Vernon at that same very minor, Victorian boarding school with pretensions to being a public school that had moulded him, and to indulging his daughter beyond any bounds of reason. 

The resulting characters of Vernon and Marge are too well-known to require further description.


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eagles_rock From: eagles_rock Date: July 15th, 2007 09:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

The time has come, the walrus said...

Bob Hoskins was interviewed by Jonathan Ross just before he talked to JKR; Hoskins said he'd love a role in the HP films, there was mild banter around this. LJ'ers have muttered about him being cast as Slughorn, (more of a Dung, I'd have thought) but I felt sad that Richard Griffiths couldn't be Slughorn. Ha!

I loved the Dursley story, downright nasty though it is. Very plausible. I can see Harry having rather a strong reaction to the carelessness and desertion that ends in Privet Drive. I'm intrigued by the Lovegood aunt too.

Watch out, I think each son has to be fathered by the age of 20, do you want more breathing space?

Wizarding contraception: I subject I'm sure keeps you awake at night - I can see Lucius getting a teenage Draco fitted for bespoke Wizarding prophylactics. Just a thought...
themolesmother From: themolesmother Date: July 16th, 2007 11:41 am (UTC) (Link)
The Dursley story is quite perfect, and the appearance of a Lovegood in the whole saga had me laughing out loud.

A Mosleyite background seems just right for the appalling Vernon. I could see Dudley joining the BNP, also.

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