I began to realize after the first week I hadn't understood how much there was to magic then potions brewing. Scribbling notes in classes and trying to stay awake in History was so much harder than I realized. Professor Binns, the ghost, didn't seem to mind that I stopped listening to his dead lecture and began reading from the book. It was hard to stay up every Wednesday night at midnight watching the stars and planets. Herbology was already proving to be my weakest strength. I always had papa there to help me out with the herbs but when he was gone I would only go out looking for them. I always had my nanny to help me also when papa was at school. Charms came right before Herbology. My wand didn't like charming things apparently. During Transfiguration I had almost made a match turn into a needle but swiped it away before Professor McGonagall came over. When she asked where it was I shrugged and gave a weak smile. Pocketing the needle I thought it would be good practice. In Defense Against the Dark Arts I could tell Professor Quirrell hated me. I had asked a question about the text and he angrily snapped at me for reading ahead. Finally Friday came as I joyfully skipped to the Great Hall. Sitting excitedly down I got out a quill and parchment. My letter was to papa explaining my week and how I was excited to go to his class. As I closed my letter Harry Potter and Ron Weasley sunk into the bench besides me.
"What do we have today?" Harry asked pouring something on a bowl of mush.
"Double potions with Snape. He's the head of the Slytherins and always favors them." Ron glanced my way and I quickly looked away.
"I wish Professor McGonagall favored us." Harry replied. "Your Anna right?" He tapped me on the shoulder. I nodded slowly. "During dinner the first night you said he was a friend of the family." I smiled and nodded. "You'll probably get favored then." He concluded. I shrugged.
"Really? What is he like?" Ron asked. Before I answered a snowy owl swooped down next to Harry. I quickly got up and headed out of the Hall. Students slowly made their way to the Great Hall as I headed to the dungeons where papa's class was. When I got there I sank down. My heart racing. Why did Harry Potter care who gets favored or not? Did it matter?
"Miss. Black?" A familiar voice said. Glancing up papa was looking at me worriedly. I smiled and took out my potions book.
"May I sit here, Professor Snape." I swallowed a laugh as a couple of Slytherins past. With a small smile he nodded. Soon Gryffindors and Slytherins were allowed in the classroom. Grabbing a seat up front a bushy brown headed girl sat next to me.
"I'm Hermione. Hermione Granger." She said and faced the front.
"Anna." I replied and looked forward as well. I could barely tell but I knew papa was looking at me to see if she was a friend. Papa finished roll, giving a small twitch of his lip at my name, and began to talk about potions.
"Many of you don't believe it's magic. I don't believe anyone would understand a softly brewing potion on top of shimmering flames that can ensnare the senses and bewitching the mind." Papa glanced at me. I was picturing the first cauldron I ever saw. How it looked exactly like that. "I can teach you how to brew glory, bottle fame, and even put a stopper to death. Potter!" Harry's head shot up along with everyone's turning to look at him. "What would I get if I added powder root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?" Hermione's hand sprung up. I raised mine halfway.
"I don't know" He replied.
"Now, Potter, where I look if I wanted a bezoar?" Hermione's hand stretched up more. I lowered mine knowing full well that papa wasn't looking for answers.
"I don't know, sir" Harry replied again. Papa asked another question on which Harry Potter remarked "I don't know, sir, but I think Hermione does. Why don't you try her?" I gasped and people chuckled. Did he know he was talking to a teacher? I covered my surprise with a fake sneeze. Writing the questions down with the answers I glanced a few times at papa. He also glanced at me. Why did papa do that to Harry? Sure, he did deserve the points off for cheek but why hadn't papa called on someone else? Papa paired me up with Hermione. As we worked on our potion I was beginning to see she didn't want my help. As I studdered to help her she shot me a deadly look. Glancing at papa he praised Malfoy's potion but glanced nervously at me. Raising my book to my face I began to feel tears in the back of my throat. Hermione wasn't helping either. She demanded I helped but when I gave her hints, notes papa and I made, she looked very snooty and pulled the cauldron closer to her. With a sudden hiss a cauldron melted and potion began to spew everywhere. I jumped onto the table as everyone clambered onto their chairs to avoid the potion. When the hour was over I 'accidentally' knocked off an ingredient. It shattered and I began to clean it up. After everyone left papa hurried over to me.
"Are you okay?" He asked looking at the mess. Ignoring it I pulled him into a hug. He hugged me back. "Go make some friends and I'll clean up." He said giving me a giant smile. Returning it I grabbed my bag and headed to the common room. When I entered the common room it was already busy. Plopping down in a seat I got out all the homework due Monday.Starting on potions I heard a small voice.
'May I sit with you?" Looking up I saw Hermione. "Sorry about today, I'm nervous." She said quickly. I smiled and nodded. After finishing I looked outside to see the sun start to go down. After putting our stuff away, eating dinner together as friends, we headed back to the dormitory.
"This world is so new to me and makes me nervous." Hermione said in her pajamas. I sat on my bed in my own pajamas.
"I lived my whole life with magic in a muggle town."
"Muggle?" She asked her eyebrows knitting in confusion.
"Non wizarding people." I answered. "That's the lest harmful one. There's halfbood. It means half wizard half muggle. Then there's pureblood. That's only used by the families that hate halfbloods and muggles alike. Pureblood meaning no muggle blood. I really think it doesn't matter because you can have squibs in pureblood families. Squibs are purebloods with no magic. I don't know my mum so I can't tell you what I am. Papa doesn't like to talk about."
"That's awful!" She said disgustingly. I shrugged.
"There will always be things like that." I continued.
"Well goodnight Anna" She said and closed her curtains blowing out the candle. Moonlight streamed into the room. I wasn't at all tired however. Grabbing my picture frame out of the pillow I watched it for a while smiling absentmindedly. Slowly I pulled on a robe and pocketed the picture. Walking out of the dormitory I headed to the common room. It was empty except for two red-headed students who whispered near the fire.
"Who are you?" I asked making them jump. They turned around and smiled at each other.
"I'm Feorge and this here is Gred were in our third year meaning you should listen to us." One of the red-headed boys said.
"I listen to myself thank you, Fred." I answered and turned towards the door leaving the common room.
"Where are you heading?" Fred asked rising to his feet.
"I heard the castle in beautiful at night." I again answered and swung the portrait open.
"Wait!" They said at once. "You need a guide." The one called George said.
"No I don't." I said defiantly and walked out. I quickly headed down the hall and turned the corner. Looking back I noticed they hadn't followed. Smiling I ran through the castle halls the moonlight lighting my way and my bare feet hitting the cold floor in a signal pattern. It was amazing. Everything was silent as I slowed to a stop and peeked out to the grounds. There the grass stood like a blanket and the trees stretched tall barely touching the stars. There were so many of them. Thousands upon thousands of glittering lights that filled the sky and one big liquid brightly lit moon hung so low the trees barely touched it. I could catch a glimpse of the lake reflecting the night sky above it like a portrait so one could lie among the stars if one wanted to. Smiling I glanced into the hall where the darkness tried to swallow the light streaming from the windows and I stood bathing in the light.The silence kissed the night in perfect harmony not wanting it to be disturbed. Then I heard a small meow from a cat. Jumping back I looked at Mrs. Norris. She rubbed my legs and a smile disappeared. My heart pounded louder than a drum. Then it slowed as I heard footsteps. Taking a deep breath I was ready for someone to get my papa. When a hand was placed over my mouth and I was forced behind a painting. My breathing quickened as I pressed my back to the wall afraid of what put me here.
"Lumos!" A voice said and a freckled face with red hair was seen in wandlight. Before I could say anything he put a hand over my mouth and his wandlight faded as the portrait creaked open. I could see a wheezy old man looking around. Closing my eyes I moved the boy's hand away from my face. With the portrait cracked open I could see the outline of messy hair and sagging shoulders in relief. Finally after what seemed like ages he swung the portrait opened and hoped out. Turning he helped my out.
"Why?" I asked while he glanced up and down the corridor.
"I'm on lookout. If your spotted that means we're..." He didn't finish because the twin came sprinting down the corridor. Crashes followed and Peeves came floating up throwing things down crackling with laughter. The boy grabbed my hand as we sprinted down the hallway after the other boy.
"Ooo! What fun!! Students out of bed!" Peeves crackled at the top of his voice. Suddenly the corridor went two ways.
"Split up!" I yelled to the boy and took the right hall. Peeves groaned but followed the boy as he took the left. Glancing back no one was behind me. With a crash I hit one of the suits of armor having that and me toppling over. I hissed at the pain of the metal. The hall was still silent. Laying on my stomach I tried to crawl from out of under the armor.
"Oh! Is Ickle Firstie stuck! What fun!" Peeves singsongy voice echoed down the hall. My heart pounded as I struggled to move. Finally I covered my head waiting for Peeves to throw something.
"ENOUGH!" A voice shouted "Peeves go away now!" Something was tossed and hit the wall behind me. Then the armor was lifted off and I looked up. Papa stared down at me. I could tell he was angry.
"Papa, I can explain..." I started but his face softened and he knelt besides me. Helping me stand he gave me a hug.
"What are you doing?" He asked
"I heard the castle was brilliant at night. It is!" I answered looking down and putting my hands in pocket. I tightened my grip on the picture. Papa hugged me again. I looked up to see him smiling.
"No more night time walks." He said and took my hand which held the picture. Smiling he took out his wand and tapped it on the picture. The golden frame got smaller and turned into a locket and chain. Wide eyed I took it from him and opened the locket. I could see the whole picture as it was before being shrunk. Smiling I hung the chain around my neck.
"Deal." I answered and he walked me to the common room and left. Entering the room I saw the twins laughing. They stopped when I entered.
"You made it!" One of them said
"Of course I did." I answered and walked to my dormitory.