Timeframe 
This is one of the few chapters in the series not to be told from Harry's point of view. It takes place ten years before the main events of the book and solely on November 1st, 1981.
 Synopsis 
Vernon Dursley, his wife Petunia and their baby son Dudley, live a smug life in Suburbia. They have everything that they could possibly ask for, yet they also have a dark secret. Petunia�s younger sister, Lily, was a talented witch. Lily married a wizard called James Potter and they went on to have a baby together, christened Harry.
On his commute to and from work on the day that our story starts, Vernon witnesses some very unusual things. The streets are filled with cloak-wearing people, whom he recognises as magic folk, and they all seem to be celebrating. He hears somebody namedropping the Potters and is scared that they will try and contact him. He discusses his concerns with his wife and eventually manages to convince himself that whatever is happening could not possibly involve his family.
When the Dursleys have all gone to bed, a wizard appears in their street, Privet Drive. His name is Albus Dumbledore and he is the headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. His arrival is watched by a tabby cat, which suddenly transforms into a woman. Her name is Minerva McGonagall and she is Dumbledore's deputy at Hogwarts. The pair exchange pleasantries and have a discussion.
It transpires that an evil dark wizard named Voldemort has been waging war on the wizarding world and that he has now been abruptly defeated. The previous evening, Voldemort turned up at the place where the Potters where living with the aim of killing Harry for, as yet, unknown reasons. Voldemort first kills James Potter and then Lily, who begged for Harry's life. When Voldemort tried to kill Harry, the spell ricocheted and hit the former, severely weakening him and virtually destroying his body. Harry is to be brought to live with his Aunt and Uncle, the only family that he has left.
A loud noise heralds the arrival of a flying motorcycle. An enormous man called Rubeus Hagrid, who is introduced as the Hogwarts gamekeeper, rides it. He lands near Professors Dumbledore and McGonagall. In his huge arms, he carries a small bundle containing the sleeping form of baby Harry. The trio work together to deposit Harry on the doorstep of his Aunt and Uncles house, together with a note explaining the peculiar circumstances and asking them to take Harry in as their own. They notice a deep scar on the infant's forehead, shaped like a lightning bolt. Dumbledore explains that it is the mark where the failed killing curse struck him.
 Setting 
 Characters 
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