It was still rather cloudy when Rowan emerged having exchanged some of her saved up pocket money into muggle currency. Making her way down the street, she kept going until she, at last, reached her destination at a dark, twisting narrow street. She paused for a moment at the entrance before entering the dingy alleyway. The shops on either side of the street were entirely made up of shops devoted to the Dark Arts. There was a shop with an old wooden street sign hanging over a shop selling potions candles with the words, Knockturn Alley.
With a mixture of unease and relief, Rowan knew she was in the right place. Continuing down the street without making eye contact with any of the shady individuals she paused at seeing a shop several doors away with gigantic black spiders. Flinching, she hurries past to stop two doors later in front of another shop with shrunken heads.
Right across from said the questionable shop is another dusty window shop with the faded words in cursive, "Borgin and Burke, since 1863, Confidential valuation service for unusual and ancient wizarding artifacts." Knowing she was at the right place, she crossed the street and entered the large, dimly lit wizard's shop.
The bell clanged as the door closed behind her. Glancing around, Rowan carefully eyes the shop. A glass case nearby held a withered hand on a cushion, a bloodstained pack of cards, and a staring glass eye. Evil-looking masks stared down from the walls, an assortment of human bones lay upon the counter, and rusty, spiked instruments hung from the ceiling. A shelf full of skulls, with a long coil of hangman's rope, and a magnificent necklace of opals. Upon closer examination, a yellow card reads, "Caution: Do Not Touch. Cursed Has Claimed the Lives of Nineteen Muggle Owners to Date."
Rowan makes a face before her eyes instinctively flicker back to the hand on the cushion. A hand of glory. All that was needed to use was to insert a candle and it gives light only to the holder! Though very useful, no doubt, it wasn't something she was willing to try out herself. But then again, it was the best friend of thieves and plunders. She was just the wrong consumer.
A stooping younger man had appeared from behind the counter, smoothing his slightly greasy hair back from his face. "Welcome," Mr. Borgin said in an oily voice. "How may I be of assistance-?"
Mr. Borgin monetarily paused at seeing his customer's age. But not one to judge nor miss a sell, he smoothly continues, "Are we buying or selling, young lady?"
Rowan turns her gaze for that which she came to purchase, a large black cabinet standing right across from a dirty, stone fireplace. "How much for the cabinet?"
Mr. Borgin blinks and grins a sharp, yellow-toothed grin. "Ah, well. This particular cabinet is a one of a kind piece," Mr. Borgin oily said as he rubbed his hands smelling a profit. "I'm afraid I can't sell it for anything less than fifty galleons."
"Do you take me for a fool?" Rowan coldly said. "That is a vanishing cabinet without its match. At best, it's worth is no more than ten galleons."
Mr. Borgin quickly backpedals and says, "As you stated, Miss, it is a rare vanishing cabinet. It isn't worth anything less than thirty galleons."
"It is useless without its pair," Rowan snapped. "Fifteen Galleons."
"Sold," Mr. Borgin instantly said with a wide grin at having earned a profit of ten galleons. He'd purchased the wardrobe for five galleons and sold it for double. He certainly wasn't about to complain.
Rowan pulls out the said amount and places the money onto the counter. Mr. Borgin happily counts the money on the counter and says, "A pleasure doing business with you, Miss. Would you like for me to shrink your purchase?"
"Yes, please," Rowan flatly said, and with a flourish, Mr. Borgin shrunk the cabinet for her to take.
With a stiff nod, Rowan accepts the cabinet, and carefully puts it away to burn in the fireplace later. Swiftly making her way out of the shop, she makes sure not to stare at anyone and anything beyond remaining alert for anyone approaching her. But still thanks to the time of day, she did not encounter anyone nor was she stopped by anyone unsavory.
With a sigh of relief, Rowan finally emerged back out into Diagon Alley and decides to explore for a bit. Besides Diagon Alley and Knockturn Alley, there were two other sectors, she'd never entered before, Horizont Alley and Carkitt Market.
Horizont Alley was the small street that connected all of what constituted as Diagon Alley. There weren't that many shops, to be honest. Still, they were interesting such as a pub called, The Fountain of Fortune; a magical toy store called Pilliwinkle's Playthings; Weeoanwhisker's Barber Shop, Tobacconist, and Flimflam's Lantern's, which had magical lanterns which turned things on and off via a fire-making spell.
Personally, Rowan thought that would be much better than the torches at Hogwarts. But then again if the students were capable of putting out the lights, that may not be in Hogwart's best interest. Maybe, the torches, in the end, weren't such a bad idea after all...
Carkitt Market, on the other hand, was much larger than Horizont Alley and Knockturn Alley, but not as large as Diagon Alley though. There was an Apothecary, a pub, a candy store, a post office, a museum, a clothing shop, various magical item shops, and other such stores. What caught Rowan's eye were three shops, Bowman E. Wright Blacksmith, House-Elf Placement Agency, and Wands by Gregrovitch.
The first because simply because Goblins were known for forging the best items. But then again, Goblin forged items were literally worth every single weight gram in galleons. It wasn't surprising to think that there would be such a thing as a blacksmith, after all, to forge well-crafted items without overly exorbitant pricing.
As for the House-Elf Placement Agency, it was more of a selling and trading House Elves. It was a bit of a sad business really, but the only small consolation is that the poor things weren't out in chains or anything like that. The House Elves in stock so to speak were treated quite well until the moment they were placed with their new masters. After that, it was out of the agency's hands.
And as for the last shop, Rowan now understood why Ollivander was so touchy about Gregrovitch and how various purebloods who sided with Riddle possessed Gregrovitch wands to begin with. Apparently, there this was the side store, where there were alternative wands. Still it did explain, why, Ollivander felt that Gregrovitch was on crouching on his territory because he literally was.
Still, Rowan had fun peeking through the various other places including Globus Traveling Agency. Who knew that renting carpets was a real thing? Of course, much like any driving vehicle, one must be of the proper age and be able to pass a flying exam in order to rent one.