"Gryffindor!" The hat called across the Great Hall. A great applause burst out at one of the four tables. The witch dressed in long green robes that was known as professor McGonagall lifted the hat off of Sirius' head, revealing a proud smile. He jumped up from the chair and started cheering along with the Gryffindors as he pranced towards the table. He purposely made a small detour to pass by James who was clapping extra hard along with the rest of the first years to whisper to him: "Ill save you a seat,"
This made James smile, but as the applause died it made him fully aware of what was to come. Soon his name would be called for his sorting. What made him so sure he would be sorted into Gryffindor? What if he didn't make it? He took a deep breath and glanced up at the brilliant ceiling of the great hall which revealed a perfect starry night. It seemed to calm his nerves. James focused on his surrounding, taking in the beauty of the great hall, but avoiding the sight of the sorting hat as it was placed on countless other students heads. The names leading up to his seemed like a blur. But he was shocked back into reality when McGonagall read the name off of her list "Pettigrew, Peter,"
She was at the Ps now. His turn was close... She placed the sorting hat on the Peter boys blond head and after a brief moment it called out: "Gryffindor!" An applause erupted once again but it all sounded muffled as James watched McGonagall sharply as she glanced back at her list as she lifted the hat from Peters head.
"Potter, James," His stomach plummeted. He glanced around him to find everyone was suddenly silent, looking around the crowd of first years, trying to spy the person who matched the name. This was it.
James stepped forward, aware of all the eyes on him, and carefully climbed up the steps leading to the stool where he had to sit, focusing not to trip on his long robes. He plopped down on the stool feeling a little bit of accomplishment from just making it up there. But this was the hard part.
The hat came down gently on his head. It fit quite large. It would have sunk down over his head if it wasn't for his glasses where the front of the hat barely balanced. He stared out at the whole school as they stared back. Suddenly a sharp, raspy voice began to whisper in his ear. It startled him a little.
"Ah... Mr Potter..." It muttered to itself. "Where to put you, where to put you..." There was a moments silence where James knew the hat was thinking. "Ahhh, yes.. Better be... Gryffindor!" It called the word for the whole school to hear.
As James gave a huge smile, he let escape the breath that had been trapped in his lungs for what seemed like the past twenty minutes. The hat slipped back off his head, leaving his glasses crooked. He got up and quickly moved towards the Gryffindor table, adjusting them back properly on his face. He saw Sirius clapping with a huge smile on his face, a vacant seat next to him which was where he sat.
He felt Sirius give him a big pat on the back. "We did it, mate," He spoke under his breath. James smiled.
"And that's five galleons I'll never see again." He muttered back. Sirius chuckled.
At this point in the sorting there weren't many people left. It was when the name "Snape, Severus," was called, was when a red headed girl sitting next to the Peter boy, who were across from James and Sirius, stood up to get a better view. James and Sirius both looked over too to see what was so interesting about the next boy that was walking up. He was an average height boy with long black hair. He walked nervously up and sat down, the hat being placed on his head. This followed a long silence. James knew that at this time the hat must have been whispering to Severus.
"Slytherin!" It finally called. The red headed girl slumped back down in her seat, seeming deflated.
There were only about five kids left and they were sorted quickly. After the last student had found a seat at the Hufflepuff table, Dumbledore stood up and waved his hands to silence the school. His long, white hair and beard hung over the deep purple robes he was wearing.
"Welcome to yet another year at Hogwarts!" His voice boomed, two blue eyes twinkling behind a pair of half-moon glasses. "I don't mean to keep you waiting, I'm just as hungry as you are," He smiled as he rubbed a hand against his belly. "But just some quick announcements: Our caretaker Mr Filch-" Dumbledore pointed a hand in the direction of the back corner of the great hall.
Everyone looked over to see the man. He had long, brown hair and didn't wear a very pleasant look on his tired face. In his arms he clutched a ragged looking cat with two deep amber eyes glaring at everyone. Dumbledore Continued.
"-Has asked me to remind you once again, that all magic is not permitted in the hallways between classes. And a bit of information to our first years... The forbidden forest is strictly off limits at all times..." There was a brief moment where he gazed across the four long tables. "Begin the feast!" He exclaimed finally with a wave of his hands.
All of a sudden platters of food appeared before them. Both Sirius and James where caught in awe at the sight. But both didn't feel quite so hungry after their episode on the train. Both slightly hesitated. But Sirius could tell what they were both thinking.
"Come on, James," He encouraged as he reached forward, grabbing a scoop of mashed potatoes and plopping them down on his plate. "No point wasting a great feast like this," James had to agree. He had never seen this much food in his life. He reached forward to grab a chicken leg of the top of a pile but saw the red headed girl sitting across from him. She sat looking a little sad. She was completely zoned out, obviously thinking hard as she bit at her finger nail. James spoke up.
"Was- er- was that Snape boy your friend?" James asked, making his best guess at why she seemed so depressed. The girl took a second to zone back in and realize that he was talking to her. Her brilliant green eyes flashed up at him.
"Oh- Yeah he was. I just can't believe he got put in Slytherin," She spoke. James considered this for a second.
"Well don't stress it too much," He said trying to sound cheerful. He reached forward across the table to shake her hand. "I'm James Potter," He told her. The girl looked at his hand, and with a smile reached out and shook it.
"Lily Evans," She said sounding a little more bright. They both proceeded to pile food on their plates.
"So- uh. Lily," James continued trying to make conversation. "Where are you from?"
"Oh just in Britain. I live in a small neighborhood with my family. They're muggles," Jame slightly chocked on his pumpkin juice but forced himself to swallow it considering spitting it back in his goblet would be rude.
"Really?" He was quite shocked at this new bit of information. "Muggles can have magical kids?"
"You didn't know that?" Piped up the little plump boy named Peter sitting next to Lily. My dad is a muggle... Are you a pure-blood or something?"
"Yeah, guess so," James answered. Next to him Sirius started laughing. He had been eavesdropping the whole conversation.
"Even I knew that!" He boasted. "And I'm from a pure-blood family," But James shot him a sharp look which shut him up.
"Anyway," James tried to change the topic. "You two," He said addressing Peter and Lily. "This is Sirius Black."
"Hi, Peter Pettigrew,"
"And I'm James by the way, Peter if you didn't hear," James told him. Peter gave him a smile but nudged the boy next to him. This boy had been silent the whole time. He kept his head low, his brown hair hiding his face.
"Would you care to introduce yourself, Remus?" Peter muttered towards the boy. He gave Peter an unreadable look but turned to address the rest of them.
"Remus Lupin," He spoke dully. The rest of them muttered quick hellos and Remus turned back to the food on his plate without another word. Peter frowned at this.
"He doesn't talk much," He told them. "I was in his compartment on the train ride here," Peter laughed. "Just gouged on honey dukes chocolate he bought from the trolley lady," Sirius laughed at this and launched into the story about what him and James had done on the train ride. After, James asked Lily more about her family because he found the topic of a witch being born from two muggles quite interesting. It was when she was part way through telling about her sister, Petunia, when a fourth year sitting on the other side of Remus piped up.
"Blimey, mate! That's a right good mark you've got there," He spoke. The four of them broke off from their conversation and looked over at Remus. He had his arm outstretched, reaching for a piece of bread. His sleeve slid back revealing a huge portion of his forearm to be cut and scarred.
"Merlin!" Sirius called as he seen the wounds on Remus' arm. Remus nervously glanced around at everyone staring at him and quickly sunk his arm back behind his robes. "What happened to you?"
"I tripped and fell," He answered quickly. Sirius looked at him suspiciously.
"That is from a little fall?" He asked.
"Yes well..." Remus paused. "My mum took me to the beach a few days ago and I slipped on some jagged rocks." He finished, sounding quite pleased with his answer. But Sirius didn't seem to buy it.
"Okay..." He agreed reluctantly. Remus turned back to his plate, returning to his silence. But Lily didn't let him.
"So, Remus!" She called over to him in an almost forcefully cheerful way. "Where are you from?"
"Britain as well." He replied quickly
"And you live with your parents then?"
"Yeah. My dads a wizard but my mum not so much."
"Are you happy you were placed in Gryffindor?" James asked suddenly, trying his best to involve him into the conversation.
"Well sure. I mean Ravenclaw would have been good as well. But I won't argue,"
"What, are you some kind of a bookworm?" Sirius piped up sarcastically. Remus laughed.
"Hey, its better than Hufflepuff," He replied coolly
"That's what I said!" Sirius exclaimed with a laugh.
"I don't understand what you find so horrible about Hufflepuff," Lily protested bitterly. "It's a great house. No one should be ashamed to be put in that house. I would have been proud if that's where I was put,"
"Then why are you in Gryffindor, Evans?" Said Sirius.
"Because that's where the hat put me you ninny!" She shot back. James, Peter and even Remus began to laugh as Lily and Sirius began to argue.
It was the second bight of the rich chocolate pudding that made James and Sirius drop their spoons and slump against each other with a moan of sickness. Lily rolled her eyes at the two boys but she looked a little frightened when she saw Remus wolfing down a large helping of the pudding.
"First years this way!" Called a fifth year girl as most students were beginning to file out of the Great Hall. Remus and Peter were the first to get up and headed towards the girl together, Lily following close behind. But it took James and Sirius a minute to get to their feet. Practically holding each other up, they followed the rest of their fellow Gryffindor first years.
"My name is, Maisy Vance. I am a Gryffindor prefect and I will be showing you to the Gryffindor tower. Follow me please, and don't stray," Maisy finished as she turned swiftly on her heel, flicking her long, dark hair which nearly hit a first year girl in the face. Everyone followed without a word. She led them out through great, vast hallways and eventually to a huge case of stares that lead up a great tower.
"Be careful here," Maisy called over her shoulder. "The staircases change."
It took awhile, but Maisy managed to help navigate the large group of lost looking first years up to the entrance to the common room.
"Password?" Spoke a heavy set lady on the portrait on the wall.
"Flobberworm," Replied Maisy. Suddenly the portrait swung open, revealing an entrance. Maisy stepped through, talking as she did. "You need a password to be able to enter. Obviously, the current one is, Flobberworm. But the passwords do change frequently so try to keep up. If you're ever confused ask me or any other of the Gryffindor prefects," Suddenly they were entering a huge chamber. "Now this-" She continued. "Is the Gryffindor common room,"
The first years were caught in awe at the room. A huge space covered in comfy armchairs and fancy tables. A fire crackled in the corner. And large windows gave the magnificent view of the school grounds.
"Yes, I think you will all find yourselves quite comfortable here," Spoke Maisy. "This is where you will do homework, socialize or relax. But upstairs is where you will find your sleeping quarters." She indicated towards two staircases. "To your left are the boy dormitories, and to your right are the girls. That's about all you need to know. If you have any questions don't feel afraid to ask. And I wouldn't suggest staying up too late. Tomorrows a busy day for all of us," She gave a warming smile then swiftly made her way up the staircase to the girls dormitory.
The first years seemed to be dumbstruck at what to do next. They glanced around the circular room. A few other Gryffindor students were sitting around but most had already decided to go to bed. And that's what most of the first years decided to do as well. The crowd of them trickled away as they divided up to the separate dormitories. But Sirius had already found a nice spot on the couch right in front of the fire. James followed. When he fell into the seat next to Sirius, none of them spoke. Really, none of them thought they could speak without seeing their dinner in reverse. So they both just sat their gazing deep into the low flames.
This went on for several minutes until a familiar voice called to them across the dormitory. "Goodnight, boys," It was Lily. James turned his head and looked over the back of the couch at her as she waved and walked up the stairs to her dormitory. But Sirius didn't move. He remained staring at the fire with a blank expression upon his face.
"Sirius?" James nudged him gently.
"Mmm?" He replied lazily.
"We'd better head off to bed too,"
"I think you're right." Sirius said as he heaved himself up from the couch, giving a big yawn. They shuffled towards their dormitory and made their way up to a room with four beds. Two of which were occupied. One by Peter who was silently reading a book, light protruding from his wand tip. In the bed next to his was Remus who was already fast asleep, snoring loudly every time he heaved a breath. When Peter noticed them come in he closed the book and whispered: 'Nox' and the light faded away, leaving only the moon and stars light that seeped through the window on the back wall to light the room.
At the foot of the two vacant beds were James' and Sirius' trunks.They swiftly put on their pajamas, crawled into bed and without another word, they slipped away into a deep sleep.