James Potter and the Whomping Willow

James Potter is looking forward to his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, following in his Mother and Father's footsteps. Follow James in his adventures with Remus, Sirius and Peter in this fan fiction set before the famous Harry Potter series.


3. The letters from Hogwarts

The summer holidays were coming to an end. The last of the hot weather had drained away, leaving dull, grey clouds filling the skies, which matched everyone's attitude. 

Whilst his friends were out buying new uniforms for the local secondary school, James sat in his bedroom, bored. Although he knew Hogwarts was going to be amazing, he occasionally envied his classmates. They knew what classes they were going to be in, who was going to their school. James knew nothing. 

Possibly the scariest prospect for James was that of starting so many new subjects. Transfiguration had never been taught in his old school, and he was terrified of being bad at it. Both his parents had been star students in their day, so James could only imagine Charlus' disappointment if he found his son was not following in his footsteps. 

For the past week, James had insisted on getting the post as it came through the door each morning. With every passing day, he became increasingly worried the letter wasn't going to arrive. James knew what he was looking for. Charlus insisted on telling James about the time his letter arrived over and over. It was a slightly yellowing envelope, with cursive handwriting on the front. James' would bear his name and his address-right down to the bedroom he slept in. The envelope, Charlus would recall, felt heavier and fuller than a normal letter. It would be sealed with a wax stamp of the Hogwarts crest, and the motto beneath it: Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus. James had been taught the Hogwarts motto from a young age. It was common knowledge for every witch or wizard to know the translation, and was taken very seriously- Never tickle a sleeping dragon. 

For the seventh time, James made his way to the door as he heard the letterbox snap back. Four letters lay on the ground; two bills, a postcard, and... a yellowing envelope, with cursive handwriting on the front, addressed, 

Mr J. Potter

The Front Bedroom

12 Church Lane

Godric's Hollow


"James!" His Mother called from the kitchen. "Is it there?" Scooping up the other three letters, James rushed through. 

"Mum, look!" He thrusted the letter in Dorea's face, dropping the other letters on the countertop. She wiped her hands on her apron before taking the letter. 

"Just like my one." She murmured. "Well go on, open it!" James took it back, and turned the envelope over. The red wax sealed it, with the shield presenting the four houses icons. A gryffindor lion stood in the top right; a slytherin snake next to it; revenlaws eagle was below that, and hufflepuffs badger sat in the bottom left. Written underneath it in deep black ink was the hogwarts motto. James hesitated for a brief second, before sliding his thumb under the seal and ripping the letter open. 


Headmaster: Albus Dumbledore

(Order of Merlin, first Class, Grand Sorc., Chf. Warlock, Supreme Mugwump, International Confed. of Wizards)


Dear Mr Potter, 

We are pleased to inform you that you have a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Please find enclosed a list of all the necessary books and equipment.

Term begins on 1 September. We await your owl by no later than 31 July.

Yours sincerely, 

Minerva McGonagall

Deputy Headmistress


The other two sheets of paper in the envelope had the kit list and books and equipment written in the same, perfect cursive handwriting. 

"When can we go buy the stuff?" James looked up from the letter. 

"We can go to Diagon Alley next week, and get all the stuff then. Maybe you should start thinking about what pet you'll like as well." Dorea suggested. 

James practically skipped up the stairs, wondering what pet to get. 



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