Worlds Intertwined

When an ordinary girl received an acceptance letter from letter, a new kind of life spreaded out in front of her. Studying in an magical school was more than a fantasy, but will it remain as all the different worlds became tangled up, and she was right in the middle of it?

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3. Chapter 3

Chapter 3

Sorry about the late updates, readers! Please understand that mid-term can be really bust. But I caught up during the Labour Day weekend. Please enjoy.

 

The moment Heryane took Griselda’s hand, the room started spinning so fast that it became a blur. Heryane felt the nausea coming up and closed her eyes tightly. Then she felt a sudden pull behind her stomach, and the ground disappeared. All she could feel was the air rushing past her and the whooshing sound it made.

It was nothing like a roller-coaster ride, Heryane thought gloomily, trying hard to settle her stomach, more like being thrown in a washing machine with a full rinsing cycle. I can no longer tell which way’s up and which way’s down!

The spinning seemed to last forever, but it finally stopped. Heryane stood upright on the stone-paved ground, still gripping Griselda’s hand tightly. She staggered around a few steps but Griselda steadied her.

“Tough ride. Are you feeling alright?” she beamed down.

Heryane forced a smile back. She actually felt quite sick. She took a quick look around her, and wasn’t sure either to throw up or scream in excitement.

Under the blinding sunlight, there it was, Diagon Alley, stretching out into the distance. All sorts of shops stood open on both sides of the street, displaying things Heryane had never seen even in her wildest dreams.

“Fascinating, isn’t it? Diagon Alley is one of the most flourishing streets in the magical world. “ Said Griselda, “such a shame you couldn’t see it when it was busy, it was a lot more fun. But there’s always next year.” Still beaming, Griselda started walking along the road. “Come along. Let’s get to Gringotts the wizard bank first to change your money.”

Heryane hurried along, listening to Griselda’s intruduction about Gringotts absent-mindedly. Her attention was on the Alley, wishing that she had ten pairs of eyes to see what was around her, even though the street wasn’t at all crowded.

They paused in front of a white building which seemed to glisten in the sunlight. A few wizards passed through the front game. Heryane was going up the marble steps when she suddenly remembered something.

“Griselda? Where are all my things?” There was a trace of panic in her voice.

“Your trunk? Oh, don’t worry. I sent them to Hogwarts in advance so we don’t have to carry it around. And I’ll send what we’re about to buy there too. There’s no need to worry.” Griselda answered as they pushed through the second door, “but you do have your letter and other important things in your backpack, right?”

“Yeah, they’re right here.” Replied Heryane, pulling out the “shopping list”, “uniforms, books, wand, cauldron, phials, telescope, scales and a pet! That’s a lot to buy in one day!”

“It sure is.” They’ve reached the high marble hall. Griselda turned to Heryane, “you know what? Let me help you open a vault and put your money in there. It’s not such a good idea to carry all your money around you. We don’t even have to go into the vaults that way.”

“Sure. Thank you very much.” Heryane handed her the envelope that contained her living expenses. She really wanted to see what the inside of a wizard bank looked like. But this would have to do.

She stood there, glancing about the hall as Griselda went towards the counters. Several goblins, short in uniforms went past Heryane and gave her polite nods.

Soon they were back out in the sunny streets. They went to the Ollivander’s Wandshop first. “In case we ran out of time,” Griselda explained, “it may take hours, you know?”

“I certainly hope I won’t be that long.” Said Heryane, slowing her paces as they passed the Flourish & Blotts bookstore.

The Ollivander’s Wandshop was exactly the same as the book has described. Griselda pushed open the door and led Heryane inside. The room was dimly lit with several candles. Mr Ollivander, a very old man with grey-white hair stood up with the aid of a walking stick.

"Ah, Ms Hopkirk. Always a pleasure to meet you! You bring me new customers every year. Though this year it seems a little late." The last words were nearly muttered.

"Nice to see you too, Mr Ollivander." Griselda responded in her cheery voice, "I hope it won't take long today. We're kind of in a hurry."

"Now dear, you mustn't rush me. The wand chooses its owner. It's not my choice." Mr Ollivander said in a kind voice. "Come here, young lady. What's your wand hand?"

"Right." Heryane responded. She was a little surprised to see Mr Ollivander himself still running the shop after all these years. But she didn't ask about it as it would seem rude.

Mr Ollivander used various measurements to measure the length of her arm, hand and all sorts of places, in the meanwhile taking notes on a piece of parchment. Heryane was amazed by the silvery instruments. She could tell they were delicately crafted but worn after years of use.

A few minutes later, the old man went into the back of his shop. They could hear the sound of wand boxes being taken out of the stacks and moving in the air. After some time, Mr Ollivander came back with an armful of boxes that nearly topped him over. Griselda moved to help.

"You did say you were in a rush, Griselda dear," he said, panting slightly," I thought it may save some time of taking out the boxes this way." Griselda let out a buckle and Heryane couldn't help but grin.

Mr Ollivander handed her a wand. "Try this one. Laurel, dragon heartstring, 10 inches."

Heryane took the wand and gave it a close look. It appeared like an ordinary length of wood, with little flaring or patterns, just a little polished around the handle part, making it easier to hold. Before she could take another look, Mr Ollivander pulled it away, muttering, "no, not right. You're not that ambitious."

Heryane was puzzling over what he was talking about when the wand maker pushed another wand not her hand.

"How about this? Redwood, 12 and 1/2 inches."

She hardly held it for a second before it was taken away again.

Heryane tried several others, fir, walnut, chestnut. All were unfit for her situation. Then the next one, "cherry with dragon heartstring, 10 and 1/2 inches" came as a surprise. Heryane held it tightly, expecting nothing when suddenly, the wand gave a exploding sound, making her almost drop it. Griselda, who was reading a leaflet by a chair, looked up.

"Certainly not the one," said Mr Ollivander, putting the wand back into the box. "Too powerful for almost any wizards or witches."

After the "incident", Heryane began to feel a little blue, worrying if anything else unusual could happen. But the right wand came to her, eventually.

"Sycamore, phoenix feather, 12 and a half inches." Mr Ollivander motioned Heryane to hold the wand, and her mood lot up a bit. She felt insurance and different from all those ones.

"Ah, that's the one." Said Mr Ollivander, finally satisfied. "Quite a rare one, and surprisingly swishy."

They paid for the wand and was ready to leave. Heryane turned, "thank you, Mr Ollivander, for your time."

"Don't mention it." The old man replied. "Besides, you didn't take long at all."

"That's true, you know?" Griselda said, as they stepped back onto the street. "Once a girl tried almost every wand in the shop before she found the right one. I thought Mr Ollivander wa a lose to tears then."

"Do you take students to shop here often?" Heryane notices that fact a while ago, but haven't gotten the chance to ask.

"Yes. Did I forget to tell you that?" Griselda said, "I do this at the beginning of every school year. Explaining to muggle parents and taking the new students shopping. There's a department for this, making sure nothing goes wrong."

"Wow. You're really good at your job, you know?" Heryane told Griselda, not realising that she has absentmindedly picked up her speech pattern.

"Probably it's my optimism." Answered Griselda, with a delighted smile on her face. "You're not a tough one, Heryane. Some students ask so many questions that they never stop talking."

That's probably because I've already read it all in J. K. Rowling's books, Heryane thought to herself. But she couldn't say anything about it, in case Griselda got curious and started asking questions, or even taking her to the Ministry of Magic. She surly didn't want that.

"Guess I'm just not that talkative." Heryane simply said, "where are we going next?"

"Madam Malkin's. To get your robes and cloak." Griselda skidded along the alley. "I really like going to her place. Very neat and tidy. I'm sure you'll feel comfortable there, too."

And Heryane did. Madam Malkin was a kind woman. She greeted them warmly, though with a look that said, "why is this girl a week late" on her face. However, she didn't ask and just finished her job perfectly.

The other shops, the Apothecary and others where they bought necessary equipments were quite the same. The owners obviously knew Griselda and all had questioning looks on their faces but didn't ask further out of politeness.

The two stopped in front of Eeylop Owl Emporium & Magical Menagerie.

"You would want a pet, I presume?" Griselda looked down.

"Yes. I think an owl would be nice." Heryane remembered the book she read earlier that day about owls.

They walked into the shop, and Heryane was a little surprised by the animals chattering around them. Owls with jewel-like eyes, cats lying lazily on shelves, and other creatures that she couldn't even give a name for.

The shopkeeper was quite friendly. She let Heryane take her pick. Heryane moved her eyes towards the collection of owls. Snowy owls, spotted owls, great greys, and tiny elf owls. She was scanning through the flock when a shocking white face caught her eye. It was a barn owl. Tyto Alba, Heryane recalled from the book. The white, heart-shaped face was a little frightening at first sight, but taking a closer look, it actually looked quite intelligent and friendly. The wings were a brown, creamy colour with dark specks. The feathers and plumages silky and smooth. 

The shopkeeper noticed Heryane's gaze fixed on that particular owl. She made a comment, "barns owls have outstanding hearings and are silent fliers. That one's especially strong and friendly."

So moments later, Heryane and Griselda left the Owl Empirium, with the barn owl safely delivered to the Owlery at Hogwarts. Heryane haven't thought up a name for him yet, but Griselda said not to worry.

"You'll have plenty of time to think of it at Hogwarts. Owl remember who their owners are. They're smart creature, you know." 

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