"Honeydukes was so crowded with Hogwarts students that no one looked twice at Harry. He edged among them, looking around, and suppressed a laugh as he imagined the look that would spread over Dudley's piggy face if he could see where Harry was now."
- Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban
The red-haired lout looks at him, grins and winks, and Dudley wonders.
Is it a gift?
So long, Dud, see you next summer, and thanks for not beating the shit out of me?
Have a quick taste of whatever The M-Word has to offer?
The freaky father asked about his holiday after all.
Or a trick? Will Mum see and think Harry’s infected him?
Dad told him once not to touch any food those people offer, and he and Mum have already threatened to stop his pocket money over the doughnuts.
Maybe it’s for Harry?
That sort know that Dad will chuck them out if they do the M-word, maybe Harry’s supposed to grab it, maybe this is why he’s full from his tiny breakfast, an evil spell?
He knows he can beat Harry to it, he’s done it before and while he trails behind in running, he can be quick as a flash when it comes to food.
It looks just like a toffee.
A succulent, gooey toffee poking out of a brightly coloured wrapper; and after three weeks of grapefruit with today’s exciting lunch of cottage cheese and grated celery, Dudley’s mouth is watering at the sight alone.
And who knows what the flavour it even really is?
Dudley’s rusty imagination shifts into gear as he dimly recalls a showing of The Chronicles of Narnia as a toddler (he’d thrown a tantrum halfway through at Harry snatching a pick-and-mix sweet of his that had fallen under the seats, and screamed until the ushers had asked a frantic Petunia to remove both children.)
An everlasting box of Turkish Delight.
Dudley’s been searching for that, and so far hasn’t succeeded, although he’s made a fair attempt at it and is a boy who generally achieves a goal as soon as he decides upon it, by hook, crook or holding his breath until he turns blue, as his adoring parents exchange proud glances at their darling’s determination.
He knows it’s a stupid idea, that anything Harry and his weird mates possess that’s worth having wouldn’t never be so easily grasped - Harry can fly, faster than Dudley’s racing bike, and even his owl nips if Dudley’s clumsy sausage-like fingers poke curiously at her shining feathers, much better than the stupid parrot he swapped or his boring tortoise - and Harry never never shares.
Dudley can smell the delicious cakes and sweets Harry’s friends send, salivating as he struggles to conjure the tastes – gobstoppers as big as your head? Lollipops the size of street signs?
In the dark, he hears Harry shifting, the creak of the loose floorboard – he won’t tell, in the hope that if he pounds his ham-sized fists hard enough against the wood, he’ll somehow trick the goblins that jealously guard Harry’s treasures, and the magic wands will work in his chubby hands.
Perhaps the scruffy redhead senses some of this – they’re magic after all, and The Great Humberto can sense your darkest secrets, as long as he has his top hat on.
He squints at the boys, who certainly don’t look impressive, but then looks can be decieving – who’d have guessed anyone would send letters to Harry? Or that the same ones could enchant an old banger to fly?
And the giant savage had looked like a hairy tramp, the sort Dudley’s dad always avoided with a muttered comment about the bleeding immigrants; and it'd put Dudley in hospital.
Wincing at the memory, he wavers.
Dudley sees the magic for the first time, lying on his mum’s Barbour carpetting and grasps it.