Disclaimer: I do not own anything that could ever make me any money, that includes intellectual property such as 'Harry Potter' and I am not trying to claim them.
The Adventure Begins
Harry's hand immediately went to his wand after the tug of the portkey disappeared,
"Welcome to Amsterdam kid," a man in a strange uniform greeted him with a smile.
Slowly taking his hand off of his wand, Harry looked over to see a blond man in an odd uniform, "hello."
"Papers?" The man held out his hand expectantly.
"Um, just a moment," Harry stalled as he tried to figure out what to do, "I know I have them here somewhere."
"Take your time," the man's demeanor became decidedly colder as he began to regard Harry with suspicion.
"One second," Harry reached into his new pack, trying to think of some way to keep his vacation from ending before it began, within seconds, his fingers brushed up against a small leather booklet. Pulling it out, Harry looked at it dumbly, trying to figure out what it was.
"Thank you Sir," the man carefully took the small booklet out of Harry's hands and began examining it, "oh, I'm sorry Mr. Black, I didn't realize that you were stalling out of embarrassment and not because of some other purpose."
"Yes, well I . . ." Harry replied eloquently.
"No need to say a thing," the man stamped several pages in the small book, "I understand what it's like to have an odd name and none need know anything but your last name."
"Thanks," Harry took his Passport back and resisted the urge to ask, "You wouldn't happen to know a good place to stay the night would you?"
"Outside and to the left about two blocks down, you can't miss it."
"Thanks," Harry nodded to the man, "and have a good day."
"You as well Mr. Black," the Customs Agent gave him one last grin before waving him through the gates.
The second that he was out of the Customs Agent's sight, Harry pulled out the small leather covered booklet that had been identified as his Passport and opened it to see what had drawn the man's attention, it took several seconds of examination before he found it under the name section.
Apparently he was named 'Padamus Da Grim Nomed Black,' it was also apparent that the salesman back in Diagon Alley knew entirely too much, and had a rather 'odd' sense of humor.
It only took Harry about five minutes to find the hotel and get himself a room, walking over to his bed he prepared to take a short nap before going out to explore the world.
Then he remembered the salesman's advise to read the first page of the book, pulling it out, he flipped to the warning and began to read.
A warning to parents with school aged children:
It is a little known fact that the tracking charms placed by the various governments of the wizarding world on the wands of underage children are only effective in their country of origin. This means that if the tracking charm was cast in England then your child could perform underage magic in any country besides England without fear of being caught. This problem is further exasperated by the Ignotus charm which can be used to remove tracking charms from a tracked wand. This problem is not insurmountable and so long as your child does not learn and perform the Dolus charm, then your child's wand can be checked regularly by any number of detection spells to insure that they have not removed the tracking charms if however your child does perform the Dolus charm on their wand after performing the Ignotus charm, then there is no known way that their wand can be accurately checked for the absence of the Ministry mandated tracking charms because of the fact that the Dolus charm will give out a false positive and prevent the application of any new tracking charms.
For information purposes only, the proper wand movements and incantations for both the Ignotus and Dolus charms are provided below. You may also note that at the beginning of each country section a list of restricted and illegal spells is provided along with a list of useful spells, also for information purposes only.
Harry blinked and a smirk appeared on his face as he realized why the shopkeeper had insisted that he read the warning in the beginning of the book before he did anything else, not a day into his summer holiday and things were already beginning to look up.
Placing his book back into his pack, Harry stretched out on his bed for a few hours of sleep. After all, even a socially deprived kid who was raised in a cupboard knows that it's best to explore Amsterdam at night.
In the Red-Light District, Harry found himself overwhelmed by the sights, the smells, the lights, and the people.
Peeking into one of the many windows, Harry learned more about human anatomy then had been taught in the short course he had received in grade school and his twenty minute stroll had taught him more about the world then he had in all of his previous years combined.
Face red and head spinning with new experiences; Harry beat a hasty retreat to the relative safety of hotel room, deciding that maybe it would be best to explore during the day, allowing himself the luxury of easing into the night life.
Awaking early the next morning, Harry dressed himself and walked down to the hotel's lobby.
"Good morning," he nodded to a pair of Swedish backpackers.
"Hello," the two Swedish girls grinned at the confused look on his face, "first time in Amsterdam?"
"Yes it is, everything is just so . . ."
"Yes it can be a bit overwhelming can't it?" Hot Swedish girl number two agreed, "we've been here several times and we still find it a bit overwhelming at times."
"If you've been here several times, then what do you suggest I do?" Harry asked the buxom twosome.
"Why don't you go down to one of the coffee shops and get some brownies," Hot Swedish girl number one suggested with a wink.
"Thanks," Harry smiled brightly, "I could something sweet right now."
Waving goodbye to his two new friends, Harry walked across the street to one of Amsterdam's infamous coffee shops.
"Good morning," the Barista greeted him, "what can I get for you today?"
"Some girls recommended that I try some of your brownies."
"Alright," the man nodded cheerfully, "anything to drink?"
"Could I get a cup of tea with milk," at the man's nod, Harry continued. "Add the tea to the milk and don't stir."
"Just take a seat and I'll have it right out."
Nodding in understanding, Harry found himself a seat in one of the corner tables.
After a short amount of time, the barista came out with a tray containing a large mug of tea and a plate full of brownies.
"Enjoy," the man gave Harry a knowing smile before returning to his place behind the counter.
Taking his first tentative bite of the baked goods, Harry was surprised at how good it tasted, chocolaty with a hint of something that he couldn't identify.
Harry felt a strange sort of calm fall over his body as he sipped his tea; for the first time that he could remember he felt relaxed, he felt like a normal person, he felt like none of his problems mattered anymore.
After several hours, and several cups of tea, Harry rose to his feet and walked out of the coffee shop intent on finding some lunch at the restaurant on the other side of the avenue.
Moments after Harry found his table the peace of the day was shattered by the sounds of a four incoming Apparations.
Figuring that the Order had found him and that his vacation had come to an end, Harry looked out the large picture window and was shocked to see the street filled not with Order members, but with a four figures in black robes and white masks.
Harry was out of his seat in a flash and halfway to the kitchen before most of the other patrons of the café had time to blink.
"Do you have any cooking oil?" Harry grabbed the confused cook by the front of his shirt.
"Right over there," the cook eyed the obviously deranged man with no small amount of nervousness, "you'll find all the oil that you could ask for."
Grabbing two large bottles, Harry made his way back to the front of the café and towards the newly arrived group of dark wizards.
"We know you're here Potter," one of the masked figures called, "come out and none of these muggles have to get hurt."
Frowning in annoyance, Harry threw the two bottles towards the group and hit them with a shattering charm.
"There he is, get him," the apparent leader of the Death Munchers called after he noticed the source of the incoming spell.
Several of the Death Eaters made to follow their commander's instructions, only to slip in the puddle of oil that Harry had dumped into the street.
Harry further thinned their numbers with several Reductor Curses and within seconds there was not a Death Eater standing.
And after summoning their wands, he approached the fallen figures cautiously, reacting to any movement with several well placed stunners.
Walking up to the leader of the detachment Harry removed the man's mask and cloak.
"Enervate," Harry gave a nasty smile to the leader of the detachment, "what exactly was your purpose here?"
"I'm not saying a thing," the Death Eater growled defiantly, "I know my rights and you can't force me to do a thing."
"That's not strictly true," Harry smirked, "you see, I am not an employee of any magical government."
"So until a representative of the Dutch Ministry arrives, I get to play with you all I want."
"Y-you wouldn't do that," the Death Eater bit back nervously; "you're one of the good guys."
"No," Harry disagreed, "I'm just a guy on vacation, now do you want to see how many bones I can break before I have to turn you over to Law Enforcement or do you want to talk."
"We were here to capture Harry Potter"
"How did you find him?"
"One of the Dark Lord's followers at Hogwarts placed a tracking charm on the boy in an attempt to find out where he lives over the summer, I guess that muggle loving Headmaster of his didn't bother to check his golden boy."
"Stupefy," Harry looked down at the Death Eater in disgust, it appeared that Tom had been recruiting; it also appeared that he hadn't managed to get any competent new followers.
"Staatstovenaars stay where you are," Several wizards in official looking robes approached wearily, "slowly place your wand on the ground and then put your hands up."
"I would rather not put my wand on the ground," Harry was careful not to make any sudden movements, "one of these morons might be conscious and if so, then I would rather not give him my wand."
"Then slowly hold your wand by the tip and hold it above your head," an intimidating looking witch commanded, "then walk towards me."
"Alright," Harry agreed, "I don't suppose that you'd believe me if I were to tell you that I didn't have anything to do with this?"
Harry looked around hopefully for a few moments and then let out a sigh, "didn't think so."
"I am going to take your wand from you and then I am going to get your statement," the witch handed his wand off to one of his comrades, "do not move."
"Still as a statue," Harry had to resist the urge to frown.
The witch relaxed quite a bit after he had taken Harry's wand, "now sir, if I could take your statement?"
"Sure," Harry nodded then added hopefully, "I don't suppose that you could take my statement while I got something to eat?"
"So long as you aren't with them," the man motioned towards the death eaters, "then you can give your statement standing on your head Mr.?"
"Black," Harry gave his most charming smile, "may I lower my arms they're starting to cramp."
"You may," the woman nodded, "I am Staatstovenaar Annie Van Der Mijer, could you tell me what happened here?"
"Well, I was just sitting down for lunch when they appeared." Harry motioned towards the fallen Death Munchers, "I ran to the kitchen and got some oil, I used that and a few well placed curses to defeat the group."
"Did you have any assistance?" Staatstovenaar Van Der Mijer asked quickly.
"No," Harry shook his head and upon seeing her shocked look clarified, "what we have here is the absolute worst that Voldemort has in his service, and I had surprise and luck on my side."
"I see," the woman nodded, "do you have anything else to add?"
"The leader said something about using a tracking charm to hunt someone." Harry grimaced, "and being the suspicious sort that I am, I was wondering if you would be willing to check me for such a charm and if necessary remove it?"
"Of course," the woman performed several complex wand movements, "you were correct, you did have such a spell but I do not believe that it was placed by a Death Eater."
"It was rather amateurishly done; I'd say that whoever placed it couldn't be out of school."
"Thank you," Harry gave a relieved grin, "probably just a prank then, but one can never be too careful."
"I agree," the Staatstovenaar nodded, "find a seat, and if the other witnesses collaborate your story then your wand will be returned and you will be free to go."
"Thank you," Harry nodded politely, "may I ask you one question?"
"Are these attacks common in Holland?"
"No," the woman paused to think, "I believe that this is only the second in the last twenty years, normally they confine their activities to the UK."
"Thank you," Harry smiled, "with luck, it will be another twenty years before you have to deal with another."
"I'd rather we never have to deal with another," the woman shrugged, "if you will just wait here for a moment, I'd just like converse with my colleagues for a moment before we continue."
"Sure thing," Harry took a seat on the curb.
The woman favored Harry with one last smile then she walked out of earshot to another group of Staatstovenaars, "Well?"
"The witnesses all agree that a group of men in black robes appeared and began yelling something about something in English," The man checked his notes. "The man Black came out of the café and attacked, he then walked up to the fallen Death Eaters and hit them with a red light, and then we arrived. All told it sounds like the fight was over in less then two minutes."
"Alright," the woman blinked in surprise, "what else?"
One of the other Staatstovenaar pulled out his note book, "each of the suspects was hit by multiple Reductor Curses and stunners, looks like they were down before they even had time to fight back," he glanced at Harry, "whoever this guy is, he doesn't like to play around."
Staatstovenaar Van Der Mijer took out her own notebook, "we have a male of unknown nationality and age that by his own account defeated four Death Eaters before they had a chance to cast a single spell, though in his professional option was that they were new recruits. He speaks perfect Dutch with a Haarlem accent, and." The woman paused, "and he has an unknown magical effect that makes it difficult for me to give a description. Any ideas on who we're dealing with here?'
"Whoever he is, he's good," one of the men bit his lower lip, "I know most of the Staatstovenaars in Holland, so maybe an experienced Staatstovenaar from another country?"
"I disagree," one of the others shook his head, "I can count on one hand the people who are good enough to do something like this, and most of them are missing so many body parts that they couldn't be him even under heavy disguise."
"And the ones that aren't?" Van Der Mijer asked quietly.
"Had their minds shattered by over exposure to the Cruciatus Curse," the Staatstovenaar finished sadly, "whoever he is, wherever he came from, I can't say."
"I see," Van Der Mijer nodded, "I'll go talk to him and get more of a statement, maybe he'll let something slip."
"I wouldn't count on it," the man paused, "men like him don't make mistakes."
"Then wish me luck," she said over her shoulder as she began walking towards the enigmatic Mr. Black.
"Well?" Harry smiled up at her.
"Your story checks out," she nodded, "if you want, we can go to a restaurant where you can get something to eat and I can get a more detailed statement."
"Fine," Harry nodded, "is there anywhere around here that you would suggest we go?"
"Would you prefer wizard or non?"
"Either is fine," Harry grinned, "so long as it tastes good and there's a lot of it."
"Then I would suggest we go over to the magical section of Kalverstraat, they've got a restaurant that claims they will serve anything the customer can think of."
"Sounds fine, is it far from here?"
"Just around the corner"
"Then let's go," Harry replied, eager to finally get his lunch.
Harry followed the Dutch Law Enforcement Officer through a series of twists and turns until they came to a small café in the mouth of a street that branched off the main, "here we are."
"Great," Harry looked at the café with approval, "let's find a table."
"Please follow me," the waiter announced his presence, "will you be requiring a menu?"
"No thank you," Harry waved the man off, "I'll be ready to order in a few minutes, to start with though could you bring me something to drink?"
"Right away Sir"
"I'm afraid that I don't know much about Dutch Food," Harry grinned. "What would you suggest I order?"
"I've always liked the Limburgs Zuurvlees," the woman responded after a moment of contemplation.
"Thank you, and feel free to order something for yourself."
After a short wait, the waiter had taken their orders and the curious Staatstovenaar pulled out her note book, eager to get her questions answered.
"So, Mr. Black," she took a moment to collect her thoughts, "what made you think that those Death Eaters were new recruits?"
"Experience," Harry took a sip of his drink, "I've faced several members of the inner circle and each one of them would have been quicker to throw curses," Harry paused for a moment. "Voldemort has very few followers that are anything more then low grade thugs, even his inner circle attempts to substitute skill for sadism, the four I faced didn't even measure up to that low standard."
"I see," the woman hid her surprise, "do you think that we'll see more of them?"
"I don't know," Harry took a sip from his drink, "my guess would be that they were not working on an official mission, so there is a good chance that Volde won't bother to break them out of prison."
"Why do you think that?"
"It sounded as if they were hunting someone, and in an official hunting party there would be a high ranking Death Muncher along to supervise, for an important target it would be a member of the inner circle," Harry stopped when the waiter returned with the food and waited until the man was out of earshot. "The leader of this group was a low level flunky; my guess was that they were on an operation of their own in hopes of eliminating the target on their own in some misguided attempt to curry favor with their master."
"I see," definitely a professional, the woman thought to herself. "I noticed that you started out with some rather . . . lethal spells and only switched to stunners after the Death Eaters were down?"
"Yes I did," Harry agreed, "another lesson I learned the hard way is that a stunner is rather easy to counter, but broken bones keep your opponent down."
"I'll keep that in mind, just who are you Mr. Black?"
"I'm just a guy on a vacation to try to find something he's lost."
"And what's that?"
"Life," Harry replied sadly.
AN: I just wanted to use the word 'buxom.' Some of you may be wondering why Harry got some brownies at a coffee shop. If you do not know; it is because brownies are tasty and why shouldn't he eat them. If you do know; what trip to Amsterdam is complete without a visit to a coffee shop? Barista what a person who works at a coffee shop is called, my ex-roommate use to be one which is the only reason that I know that.
Thanks go to Finbar for providing me with a lot of suggestions and information on back packing around Europe. And Roos AKA Aria-Chan who gave me a lot of info on Holland.