The Worst Birthday

Notforthefirsttime,anargumenthadbrokenoutoverbreakfastatnumberfour,PrivetDrive.Mr.VernonDursleyhadbeenwokenintheearlyhoursofthemorningbyaloud,hootingnoisefromhisnephewHarry’sroom.

"Thirdtimethisweek!"heroaredacrossthetable."Ifyoucan’tcontrolthatowl,it’llhavetogo!"

Harrytried,yetagain,toexplain.

"She’sbored,"hesaid."She’susedtoflyingaroundoutside.IfIcouldjustletheroutatnight"

"DoIlookstupid?"snarledUncleVernon,abitoffriedeggdanglingfromhisbushymustache."Iknowwhat’llhappenifthatowl’sletout."

Heexchangeddarklookswithhiswife,Petunia.

Harrytriedtoarguebackbuthiswordsweredrownedbyalong,loudbelchfromtheDursleys’son,Dudley.

"Iwantmorebacon."

"There’smoreinthefryingpan,sweetums,"saidAuntPetunia,turningmistyeyesonhermassiveson."Wemustbuildyouupwhilewe’vegotthechance...Idon’tlikethesoundofthatschoolfood..."

"Nonsense,Petunia,IneverwenthungrywhenIwasatSmeltings,"saidUncleVernonheartily."Dudleygetsenough,don’tyou,son?"

Dudley,whowassolargehisbottomdroopedovereithersideofthekitchenchair,grinnedandturnedtoHarry.

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