The Misunderstood Hufflepuff

Just. Kind. Loyal. Social. Hufflepuffs are all of these things. But there was the one Hufflepuff. The one who wanted to get into Ravenclaw. The one who never went outside her dorm except to go to classes, but stayed silent. The one who stole food from the kitchen and her best friends were House Elves. The one who was discovered by the Weasley twins. The one who fell in love with George Weasley. The one who's name was Amber Pine, who was called the Misunderstood Hufflepuff by everyone, always.

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3. Hufflepuff House

 I was still stunned. I couldn't hear the rest of the Sorting; I wasn't paying attention. I sat down by the girl who I think was Skylar DeRoos. She had a warm smile and very blue eyes, and she held out her hand when I sat down, saying, "Hello! My name's Skylar, but you can call me Sky, Skylar, one or the other. You're Amber, right?"

  I nodded and looked down. My tie is has the Hufflepuff colors, and the emblem is on my robes. I don't feel Hufflepuff, but Skylar seems to be the perfect picture of a Hufflepuff: red hair, blue eyes, happy personality, the spitting image of Helga Hufflepuff (I'd seen a portrait). "Shy are you?" I looked up at her, and there was a concerned look on her face. "Can we be friends?" 

 Goodness, three friend 'requests' in one day. I don't like this. I whispered, "Maybe. I'm not good at making friends."

   She smiled and said, "Well, we can be friends when you're ready for it. The Sorting's almost done."

I looked back up at the Sorting to see George being the last one. He flicked his eyes over to me and smirked as Professor McGonagall put the Sorting hat on his head. Right as one of his flaming red hairs touched the hat, it screamed, "Gryffindor!"

 Professor McGonagall took the scroll and stool away as Professor Dumbledore stood up. "I extend a warm welcome to all the newcomers, and a welcome back to all the older students! I could bore you all with a speech now, but we are all hungry, so dig in!"

   At his last word food filled the table, causing the table's legs to groan. My stomach rumbled; I'd only eaten a little today. I grabbed a bit of food and ate, only for a moment, before studying the people. There were six first years around me: Skylar, another girl on my right, a girl across from Skylar, and two boys across from me and the girl across from the girl on my right.

 The girl across from Skylar was talking avidly to Skylar. The girl had long brown hair and hazel eyes. I heard Skylar say her name: Karley. I looked to the girl on my right and the girl across from her. The girl on my right had short blond hair in a bob and green eyes. She said her name was Haley. Across from Haley was a girl that had long curly black and sweet brown eyes. She told Haley that her name was April.

 I turned my attention to the boys, who were talking about Quidditch. One of them had messy black hair and brown eyes, who I think was named Noah. The other had spiky blonde hair and brown eyes, and I thought his name was Nate. Noah saw me looking at them and said, "Oi! You're Amber, right? I'm Noah," he pointed to Nate, "and that's Nate." I felt myself blushing so I looked away.

   I could feel their eyes on me for a second after, but then they turned and kept talking. I grabbed a small chicken leg and ate it until I felt eyes on me again, burning into my back. I slowly turned around to see Fred and George looking directly at me, and when I looked at them, they didn't flinch or turn away; they just kept staring. 

  My blushing got worse, so I quickly turned around. I noticed that the food disappeared and deserts appeared. I saw a plate of jello and grabbed it before anyone could take it. I turned back around to see Fred engaged in a conversation with a black-coloured boy with black dreadlocks, but George was still staring at me. 

 I looked away. I couldn't deal with this, not today. The food disappeared. Dumbledore stood up and silence fell. He peered at us through his half-moon spectacles and smiled. "I extend my welcome to new students and my welcome back to students who have returned to us. A full year of magical education awaits all of you, so a full night of sleep is a great way to start it off! Pip pip!"

   The tall Hufflepuff Prefect started calling, "First years this way! Follow me! First years!" After a majority of the people followed her, I started following. We went down a flight of stairs to what I thought was the basement of the school. There was a gigantic picture of a fruit bowl on the left wall, and along the right was a wall of barrels that had a portrait of Helga Hufflepuff. 

  The Prefect walked up to the wall of barrels and turned to us. She said, "This is the entrance to the Hufflepuff common room and dormitories. To enter, you must tap the rhythm of the song 'Helga Hufflepuff' on barrel two from the bottom in the middle of the second row." She pointed to the barrel and continued, "If you tap the wrong barrel you will be doused in vinegar."

 There was an audible gasp from a few first years. The Prefect smiled and said, "Yes, vinegar. If you get doused you can ask one of the older Hufflepuffs to call for a House Elf to help. Pay attention." 

   She grabbed her wand and pointed it toward the right barrel. She tapped in a specific pattern: tap tap tap tap, tap tap tap; tap tap tap tap tap; tap tap tap, tap tap tappity tap, tap tap tap tap tap.

The barrels started to push over into a hidden place, revealing a small doorway. The Prefect smiled and walked in. A wave of people followed, me being last. There were gasps of awe. 

  I stepped through the door and looked around. I forced my jaw not to drop. The common room was beautiful. It was round, earthy, low-ceilinged, warm, and the darkness outside peaked through the circular windows, which also revealed shadowy grass and dandelions. Floating candles danced across the ceiling, creating a soft glow. Yellow hangings, burnished copper, and overstuffed sofas and armchairs upholstered in yellow and black. Underneath a portrait of Helga Hufflepuff was a large, honey coloured, wooden mantelpiece with badgers carved into it. Many plants hung from the ceiling and on the windowsills, some chatting vividly with the students.

 The Prefect smiled at the first years' happiness. "Yes, it is very impressive, and it will never get boring. Sometimes Professor Sprout will come bring more plants or to play some games! It's very fun here in Hufflepuff! Girls' dormitories to the right, boys' dormitories to the left, the tunnels lead to your respective dorm, depending on what year you're in, you'll find your way because there's a plaque on the door. Have a great night!" She walked off through the girls' tunnel. 

   I looked around for a second. Though the common room was beautiful, it lacked some stuff. I thought that some of my woodwork and paintings could brighten it up. Though at the moment I didn't like the fact that I was in Hufflepuff, that didn't mean that I could make it look better.

 A majority of the first years had already gone through the tunnel, so I decided to go to bed. I opened the circular door and saw a tunnel that had candles within wall nooks. The tunnel was about fifteen feet long (give or take) and at the end were adjoining tunnels, about seven of them.

  The tunnel furthest to the left had a golden plaque chain that read: 

Hufflepuff First Years

Haley Abbott

Skylar DeRoos

April Kleinschmit

Amber Pine

Karley Schieffer

I pushed the door open. The room was circular, with the beds in small holes in the wall. A sheer curtain came down over each bed, and another gold plaque above the curtain with my name on it. There were two thin shelves with drawers on the bottom on both sides of the bed that reached up to the plaque and ended in a point. My trunk was at the foot of the bed. 

  The girls were chattering happily, sorting their clothes into the drawers and books onto the shelves, laughing. When I came in, silence fell. They probably knew me as the weird girl who was alone on the train and didn't talk to anyone but Skylar during the feast. 

 Skylar smiled and said, "Amber!" I blushed and decided not to say anything. I walked over to my trunk. I could feel their eyes on me. I took off my necklace to open my trunk. The chatter resumed. Click, click, click, click, click, click, click, snap, beep. I flipped my trunk open towards the wall so the others couldn't see my stuff. 

   I put my robes in the bottom drawers, books, knick-knacks, telescopes, scales, jars, phials, carving knives (for my woodwork; don't worry, there were protective cases), knitting needles, calligraphy pens, wax lumps, grounding bowls and grounders (I make my own paint), paintbrushes, and my collapsible easel on the shelves (the girls looked at me funny as I put them on the shelves). I pulled my canvases out from the bottom of the trunk and put them in the deepest drawer.

  The other girls were starting to change and go into the adjoining bathroom to brush their teeth. I grabbed my pajamas and put them on, hoping that my owl, Vera, got to the Owlery safely. I set my wand on the small pull-out table and closed my eyes. This is going to be a long year.

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