Sofia threw the Daily Prophet into the fire angrily. She could not believe that Professor Dumbledore and Harry did not have more support. She could was furious that so few people believed them. The Ministry of Magic was clearly controlling everything that went into the Daily Prophet. The snide comments about Dumbledore losing his edge and Harry being down right crazy infuriated her.
All summer it had been the same. The Ministry of Magic had been throwing the two down in every edition and no one bothered to ask if perhaps they were telling the truth.
Sofia had spent most of the summer in fear. She feared the red burning of the wolf tattoo upon her wrist. She feared being summoned by the dark sorcerer who left a trail of death and destruction wherever he walked. Yet nothing had happened. The tattoo had remained cool and black. Voldemort had not called her into his service. In fact, life had continued as if he was not even back.
"Sofia, come downstairs please!"
Sofia heard her mother call to her from downstairs. She rose from her bed and walked quickly from her room.
Sofia's room was the last room on the right hall of fourth floor of their summer house. Her brothers each had their own room closer to the stairs. Her parents room was on the third floor, along with the treasure room and two guest rooms. The treasure room wasn't really full of treasure. It was full of family heirlooms and powerful objects. The second floor held the huge priceless library that was home to over a thousand books. The first floor held the kitchen, the dinning room, and the parlor.
Sofia passed Daniel's door on the way to the staircase. She could hear soft banging noises coming from inside. Daniel was no doubt practicing the spells he knew since he would be starting school this year.
The wood railing of the huge spiral staircase felt smooth under Sofia's grasp. She walked quickly down to the first floor. When she hit the bottom staircase she turned right and made her way into the kitchen.
The family house-elf, Bertha, was pulling out herbs and spices from the huge cabinet on Sofia's right. Sofia's mother was pointing her wand at a knife that began to chop vegetables on the marble counter.
"Sofia," her mother said, "the party begins in an hour and we are way behind on getting things ready would you go help your father out back? We don't want things to be messy when your friends arrive."
Sofia groaned. She had forgotten about the party.
Her parents had decided to throw an end of summer party for all Hogwarts students and their families. Every student who would be returning to Hogwarts was invited, even those from nonmagical families. Magical families would be able to transport easily through the Floo Network. Other families who agreed to come would have transportation provided for them.
"Go on now, Honey."
Sofia turned out of the kitchen and walked back past the stairs. She kept walking past the entrance hall on her left and the dinning room on her right. She walked straight into the parlor and crossed to a glass sliding door on the right. She slid it open and walked out onto the white wooden patio.
A soft breeze caught Sofia's long blonde hair and blew it across her face. She saw her father had set up tables and chairs along the the patio. She walked down the three steps and sighed as her bare feet sunk into the soft white sand.
The sand stretched down for about twenty meters before it gave way to the beautiful cool blue ocean. Waves beat gently along the shoreline in a soft rhythmic pattern. Further down along the beach on the left, the sand have way to rocks and rose steadily into a cliff.
"Sofia, over here!"
Sofia turned to her right and saw her father standing in the middle of the beach. A long table with chairs sat in the middle of the sand, empty goblets and plates on it. There were silver balls all around him. Sofia walked over to stand in front of him.
"We're going to make these float around the beach so that there will be plenty of light tonight. The spell you'll need is eriga."
Sofia pulled her wand out from her back pocket, pointed it at the nearest ball of silver and whispered the spell. The ball shot into the air. It stopped moving about ten meters up.
"Very good" her father said.
Though he always praised her very sincerely when she completed a new spell, this time something was different. His green eyes look strained and worried. Sofia had not noticed before, but her father looked older and more tired than ever before.
"Is everything alright, Father?"
He smiled, though it looked forced.
"Of course. I just can't believe that my little girl is growing up and taking her little brothers with her."
Sofia lifted another ball into the sky. Her father did the same and they continued to lift them in silence for a little while, other than Sofia mumbling the charm to lift the little balls.
Just as the last balls were being lifted into the air, Daniel came running out of the house.
"The guests are arriving" He squealed with excitement.
Sofia and her father followed Daniel into the parlor, where wizards, witches and teenagers were gathered around the huge stone fireplace.
Sofia, not ready to face anyone yet, slipped past them as quietly as she could and ran quickly to her room where she would savor the last few moments of solitude for the night.