Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you'd expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn't hold with such nonsense. Mr Dursley was the director of a firm called Grunnings, which made drills . He was a big, beefy man, with hardly any neck, although he did have a ver y large moustache. Mrs Dursley was think and blonde and had nearly twice th e usual amount of neck, which came in very useful as she spent so much of h er time craning over garden fences, spying on the neighbours. The Dursleys had a small son called Dudley and in their opinion there was no finer boy a nywhere. The Dursleys had everything they wanted, but they also had a secret, and their greatest fear was that somebody would discover it. They didn't think they could bear it if anyone found out about the Potters. Mrs Potter was Mr s Dursley's sister, they hadn't met for several years; in fact, Mrs Dursley pretended she didn't have a sister, because her good-for-nothing husband w ere as unDursleyish as it was possible to be. The Dursleys shuddered to thi nk what the neighbours would say if the Potters arrived in the street. The Dursleys knew that the Potters had a small son, too, but they had never eve n seen him. This boy was another good reason for keeping the Potters away; they didn't want Dudley mixing with a child like that.
When Mr and Mrs Dursley woke up on the dull, grey Tuesday our story start s, there was nothing about the cloudy sky outside to suggest that strange a nd mysterious things would soon be happening all over the country. Mr Dursl ey hummed as he picked out his most boring tie for work and Mrs Dursley gos siped away happily as she wrestled a screaming Dudley into his high chair. None of them noticed a large tawny oul flutter past the window. At half past eight, Mr Dursley picked up his briefcase, pecked Mrs Dursle y on the cheek and tried to kiss Dudley goodbye but missed, because Dudley was now having a tantrum and throwing his cereal at the walls. 'Little tyke .' chortled Mr Dursley as he left the house. He got into his car and backed out of number four's drive. It was on the corner of the street that he noticed the first sign of some thing peculiar - a cat reading a map. For a second, Mr Dursley didn't reali se what he had seen - the he jerked his head aorund to look again. there wa s a tabby cat standing on the corner of Privet Drive, but there wasn't a ma p in sight. What could he have been thinking of? It must have been a trick of the light. Mr Dursley blinked and stared at the cat. It stared back. As Mr Dursley drove around the corner and up the road, he watched the cat in h is mirror. It was now reading the sign that said Privet Drive - no, looking at the sign; cats couldn't read maps or signs. Mr Dur sley gave himself a little shake and put the cat out of his mind. As he dro ve towards town he thought of nothing except a large order of drills he was hoping to get that day.
But on the edge of town, drills were driven out of his mind by something else. As he sat in the usual morning traffic jam, he couldn't help noticing that there seemed to be a lot of strangely dressed people about. People in cloaks. Mr Dursley couldn't bear people who dressed in funny clothes - the get-ups you saw on young people! He supposed this was some stupid new fash ion. He drummed his fingers on the steering wheel and his eyes fell on a hu ddle of these weirdos standing quite close by. they were whispering excited ly together. Mr Dursley was enraged to see that a couple of them weren't yo ung at all; why, that man had to be older than he was, and wearing an emera ld-green cloak! The nerve of him! But then it struck Mr Dursley that this w as probably some silly stunt - these people were obviously collecting for s omething...yes, that would be it. The traffic moved on, and a few minutes l ater, Mr Dursley arrived in the Grunnings car park, his mind back on drills . Mr Dursley always sat with his back to the window in his office on the ni nth floor. If he hadn't he might have found it harder to concentrate on dri lls that morning. He didn't see the owls swooping past in broad dayl ight, though people down in the street did; they pointed and gazed open-mou thed as owl after owl sped overhead. Most of them had never seen an owl eve n at nighttime. Mr Dursley, however, had a perfectly normal, owl-free morni ng. He yelled at five different people. He made several important telephone calls and shouted a bit more. He was in very a good mood until lunchtime, when he thought he'd stretch his legs and walk across the road to buy himse lf a bun from the baker's opposite. He'd forgotten all about the people in cloaks until he passed a group of them next to the baker's. He eyed them an grily as he passed. He didn't know why, but they made him uneasy. This lot were whispering excitedly, too, and he couldn't see a single collecting tin . It was on his way back past them, clutching a large doughnut in a bag, th at he caught a few words of what they were saying.
No lines are longer than 80 characters, TYVM. Other specified properties aren't being scored automatically at this time so this is not necessarily good news...