The Diary of a Magical Muggleborn

I was minding my own business one day at home, sipping my favorite lemon tea, when the strangest thing happened. An owl flew in through the open window and dropped a piece of parchment onto the couch beside me. Startled, I broke the red seal on the envelope and read - what? I was reading a letter from Hogwarts. And I had been accepted. It was time to say goodbye to my boring muggle life and say hello to the life of a witch! But there was one catch - I only had a week to show that I was capable of magic. Because this was part of a new experiment - an experiment to see if there really is magic in each and every one of us, muggle or wizard.

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6. The Lake

The next day was rather uneventful for me, since my only two friends were busy cleaning with Madame Hooch. I felt sort of bad for having been there the only time they got caught using the brooms at night, but on the way back to the common rooms early that morning they told me it didn't matter as long as no one discovered their secret tunnel and that it wasn't my fault at all. 

I spent my Saturday in the library by myself, reading about the history of Hogwarts and studying for the M.A.P. exams that would be in just a few days. Since I was in the special program, I would have to take a hands-on exam that coming Friday to show that I was making some progress as a witch. So far, the only class I was making any progress in was Potions. I couldn't change a beetle into anything more than a dead beetle, I fell asleep half way through History of Magic and forgot half of what he said while I was awake, and in Defense Against the Dark Arts all we really had to do was watch Protero practice defensive spells against wooden dummies. But I was determined to pass the exams and prove that I was just as good a witch as any pureblood, especially the pureblood-obsessed Slytherins. So I studied all that day, using a pen as an imaginary wand and reading up on the easiest spells.

Before I knew it, it was eight o'clock on Sunday morning, and I was making my way to the headmaster's office. Arriving at the stretch of blank wall that I knew was the office's entrance, I knocked, and the door opened up for me. I trekked up the long winding staircase, meeting the Professor right at the top.

"Goodmorning, Valerie," she said stiffly. "Let's get to cleaning, shall we?" She handed me a rag and a small pail of water. "No magic today, as this is a punishment. You will just be cleaning the floors." She stalked away towards a shelf on the far end of the room and waved her wand over it. Suddenly, everything on the shelf was polished or dusted or washed. She did this repeatedly, moving from shelf to shelf around the circular room. Within five minutes, every item on every shelf was orderly and clean. Noticing that I hadn't yet moved to wash the floors, McGonogall turned and placed her hands on her hips. 

"You may begin now, Miss Gallagher," she said pointedly. I dipped the rag in the pail of water and began scrubbing. At first, McGonogall just stood over me, looking down at me like a bird ready to swoop down on its prey. But after a few minutes, she seemed to relax and take a sort of liking to me. 

"So how are you liking our wonderful school so far?" she asked. I looked up, trying to decide what she would best like to hear as an answer. 

"It's wonderful. I think I'm doing well in my classes," I responded. 

"Good. And are you feeling prepared for your M.A.P. exams? I assure you they are not at all difficult, if you just pay attention in your studies." I stopped scrubbing and kneeled on the floor, unsure of how to answer. I decided it would be best just to tell the truth.

"Honestly, Professor, I'm not feeling prepared at all. I can't do even the simplest spells or charms or anything. The only thing I'm really good with is potion making," I admitted. 

Professor McGonogall was silent for a few moments. "You remind me of Severus Snape a bit," she remarked as she waved her wand over a chair to dust it. "He was quiet at first, too, but brave. He was a Slytherin, too," she added. I smiled a bit, unsure of who the man she spoke of was exactly, but appreciating that she saw me as more than an arrogant Slytherin. 

"Thank you, but I just don't fit in with the Slytherins. I'm not like them, and they definitely don't like me," I confessed. 

"I assume that the most trouble you've had is with Malfoy," McGonogall affirmed. I nodded, and she continued, "His father was troublesome, too. But no one is all bad or all good. I'm sure you will eventually learn to tolerate one another." 

I nodded, although I doubted we would ever get along in any way. Professor McGonogall strode around the room again, checking and rechecking the shelves for any speck of dust or any mess, and I went on with my cleaning. 

By a little before noon I had washed the entire floor, and the headmaster allowed me to leave. I planned to return to the library and study, but I was stopped on my way by none other than Scorpious Malfoy and his gang. 

"Oh look, it's the Gryffindor lover!" cackled Hazel, who stood arm in arm with Malfoy. Apparently they had heard about my excursion on Friday night with my two Gryffindor friends. Linus came out from behind the two of them with Isabelle, and the two grabbed me by the arms and dragged me out towards the lake. Since most students were studying under the a few large trees closer to the castle or napping in the shade to avoid the heat, no one stopped them from parading me to the lake's edge. Scorpious came to stand in front of me as I yelled the rudest things I could think of at him. 

"Muggleborn here needs to cool off!" he said, smirking as he stepped to the side of me and let Linus and Isabelle shove me into the lake face first. A hand held me under the water for a moment or two, just long enough for me to get nervous, before I was able to resurface. 

The four of them were laughing so hard that they were doubled over. Hazel was actually on the ground, gripping her sides and laughing so hard she weezed. Furious, I pulled myself out onto the bank. I was shaking from anger. 

"Oh look, she's cold!" Hazel howled. "I guess muggle blood is thinner than magical blood!" 

Now I was fuming. No longer shaking, I snatched my wand off the ground where it had fallen out of my pocket while they dragged me. Flicking it in a perfect motion for the spell, I shouted,

"Wingardium leviosa!"

Scorpious Malfoy floated up into the air. No one was laughing any longer. I moved my wand swiftly, shaking him from side to side violently. Once he started turning green from the motion, I flicked my wand downwards in one sharp motion - plopping him right into the lake with a great splash. 

Malfoy resurfaced, angrier even than I had been. He had gone from sickly green to infuriated red, but I wasn't afraid of him. Evidently, he couldn't swim. His robes kept dragging him down, and he was flailing his arms as if they were wings. "Get me the hell out of here!" he commanded. But his cronies had already gone, apparently afraid that I would do the same - or worse- to them. "Cowards!" he roared, realizing that he was alone. Smiling slyly with my arms folded in triumph, I looked down at him. 

"Ask nicely, and maybe I'll help you out," I proposed. For a minute, he just glared at me. But he was getting tired, and he couldn't flap his arms anymore. 

"Please," he muttered through gritted teeth. He gave me his hand, and I hauled him out onto the grass. 

He stood up, brushed himself off, and wrung out his robe. Still glaring at me, he stomped away towards the castle, muttering angrily to himself. I smiled and wandered off to relax in the shade. 

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