Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The place you go to learn magic if you can do it. The place that all or most witches and wizards go to in their lives. Students that attended or were to attend said school were sent letters every year, weeks before the first day, September 1st. It was sent to Purebloods, who were only ever aware of the magic they harnessed and spent their first 11 years of their lives preparing themselves to attend. It was sent to the Half-bloods, who were also aware of the school, though they weren't as obsessed as the Purebloods were. And then, the Muggle-born. Most or all who were entirely unaware they were even considered to attend a school to learn magic. They spent their lives going to regular school, doing everyday muggle things.
This was how Deena Johnson spent her first years of life. She went to school like everyone else, watched movies, was put into drumming lessons, even tried out for softball, though she wasn't very sporty to begin with. It was one summer day, her birthday actually, when she was at home, playing video games with her little brother Josh, completely destroying him, though trying to suck a little bit more so he didn't throw a tantrum when her mom had walked into the room, a man following right behind her. "Deena, you have a letter from a 'Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry' here, as well as this man, uh..." Her mom looks to the man, silently asking for his name again. "Martin P. Franklin" The man answers and Deena's mom nods while Josh and Deena look at him confused.
"Who?" Deena asks and Martin steps forward then. "Hey, how's it going, kid? I'm Martin, from Hogwarts. I was sent to give you your letter. Oh, and Happy Birthday" he explains. "My letter?" Deena asks confused, looking at her mom who seemed to mirror her expression, both of their eyebrows knit together. Martin takes the letter from Deena's mom, handing it to her and Deena looks down at it. "Go on, open it" Martin encourages. She frowns down at it. Who was this man? Friend of her mom's? That must be how he knows it's her birthday.
Deena opens up the letter after examining it, noticing how fancy the letter looked. Not even her Principal's handwriting was this good. She unfolds the piece of paper, reading it over. At the top of the letter was some sort of symbol. She couldn't tell what it was but it was definitely intricate which made her think this wasn't some kind of prank or something. There were four different animals in each individual square with an 'H' centered in the middle of it. There looked to be a lion and a snake as well as some kind of bird and...a badger? Not to mention the four words right under the intricate symbol 'Draco, Dormiens, Nunquam, Titillandus' whatever the hell that meant. She looks up at her mother, trying to see if her mother was joking with her but considering the apprehensive expression she was wearing, she knew that wasn't the case.
"What does it say?" Josh wonders, looking over her shoulder. Deena's eyes trail down farther, noticing the neat sprawl that might be able to give her the answers she was looking for. But before she actually can read it, the man from before points at the symbol she had been looking at. "This is the Hogwarts symbol. It represents the different houses. You've got your lions for Gryffindor, the snakes for Slytherin, the eagles for Ravenclaw and the badgers for Hufflepuff" he explains as if it's known knowledge. Deena looks over everything he just pointed at before raising an eyebrow up at him. "Why is it called 'Ravenclaw' if it's animal is an eagle?" Deena wonders and Martin just stares back at her blankly, most likely pondering it himself. "Maybe you should get back to the letter?" He says instead, motioning to the letter in her hands while Josh scoffs. She looks back down at the letter.
'HOGWARTS SCHOOL OF WITCHCRAFT AND WIZARDRY
Headmaster: Albus Dumbledore
(Order of Merlin, First Class, Grand Sorc., Chf. Warlock, Supreme Mugwump, International Confed. of Wizards)
'Dear Miss Johnson,
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 necessary books and equipment. Term begins on 1 September. We await your owl by no later than 31 July.
Deena reads it over a couple times. "Owl?" Deena questions, both Josh and her mom having leaned over to read it as well. She turns to look back at the man, who was smiling at her. "You must have a lot of questions at the moment but everything will be answered soon" He hands the second page that came in the letter. "It seems you've been accepted into some new school, Moe" Her mom explains and Deena rolls her eyes at the name. For whatever reason, her mom liked to call her by her middle name, Moe. She doesn't know where her parents got her name from or why her mom liked the name so much but she wasn't a big fan of it. She reads the second letter curiously, Josh still reading over her shoulder.
'HOGWARTS SCHOOL OF WITCHCRAFT AND WIZARDRY
First-year students will require:
1. Three sets of plain work robes (black)
2. One plain pointed hat (black) for day wear
3. One pair of protective glasses (dragon hide or similar)
4. One winter cloak (black, silver fastenings)
Please note that all pupils' clothes should carry name tags
All students should have a copy of each of the following:
The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 1) by Miranda Goshawk
A History of Magic by Bathilda Bagshot
Magical Theory by Adalbert Waffling
A Beginner's Guide to Transfiguration by Emeric Switch
One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi by Phyllida Spore
Magical Drafts and Potions by Arsenius Jigger
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander
The Dark Forces: A guide to Self-Protection by Quentin Trimble
1 cauldron (pewter, standard size 2)
1 set glass or crystal phials
1 set brass scales
Students may also bring an owl OR a cat OR a toad
PARENTS ARE REMINDED THAT FIRST-YEARS ARE NOT ALLOWED THEIR OWN BROOMSTICKS'
"Is this actually real?" Deena lets out an amused chuckle, looking up between her mom and Martin but Martin had a serious expression on his face. "There's no way this is real. Magic isn't real." "Sweetheart" Her mom gives her a warning look. "What?" Deena stands, wearing an incredulous expression on her face. "You can't tell me you're actually buying this? It's a letter to a magic school, mom. And even if magic is real, I definitely wouldn't be accepted to go. I can't do magic." Deena shoves both letters back into Martin's hands, moving to storm out of the room, both Martin and her mom calling after her but she ignores them. She slams the door to her room shut, shaking her head in disbelief. "Who even names a school Hogwarts anyways?" She mutters, dropping down onto her bed face first.
There's a knock at her door. "Go away!" Deena calls. She doesn't hear anything for a minute, thinking she got whoever it was to go away but then there's another knock and she groans. "I'm not in the mood for your jokes!" The door creaks open anyways and she snaps her head around to find that Martin man stood at her doorway. "I know you must be confused at the moment-" "Confused? I'm confused about why you're bothering me with this bull crap! Magic isn't real!" Deena scoffs, sitting up to glare at him.
Martin holds his hands up, shrugging. "It's fine if you don't believe me. I went through the same thing" He admits. "What? Someone barged into your house, telling you got accepted into some ridiculous school" Martin nods. "Who?" "I don't think his name's important" Martin replies and Deena huffs, turning away from him. She feels the edge of her bed sink and finds Martin sat beside her. "Listen, kid, if you don't want to go to Hogwarts, that's fine. If you don't believe me about it, that's fine too. But, if it were possible that it was all real...could you imagine the opportunities you'd be missing out on? You get to learn magic at a school and make friends just like you, or, you can stay here and learn about math and whatever the hell else they're teaching ya" Martin explains and Deena seriously thinks it over, looking over his serious expression and everything. They sit in silence for a couple of minutes before Deena sighs.
"What do you do there?" Deena wonders. "Me? I'm one of the gamekeepers. I look after the grounds" He shrugs. "So...you're like a gardener?" Deena asks with a raised eyebrow. "No, gamekeeper. I do a lot of important things for the school actually" Martin says proudly, standing up then. "Like what? Mowing the lawn?" Deena snickers and Martin gives her a glare. "I'm trying to help you out here, Sunshine. I'd appreciate it if you didn't make fun of my job" "Sunshine?" Deena wrinkles her nose at the nickname. "I came up with it myself." "I'm the opposite of sunshine" Deena points out. "That's the point. Now come on, let's go get your school stuff" Martin winks, motioning her to follow. Deena sighs but complies anyways, following Martin back down the stairs where Josh and her mom were.
"Can I come too?" "No" Deena tells Josh who begins to pout. "No, no, it's okay. He's probably gonna have to go through the same thing when he turns 11" Martin says and Deena rolls her eyes while Josh smiles victoriously, sticking his tongue out at Deena who does it right back. "You two play nice" Their mom scolds before turning her attention to Martin. "Do I come as well?" "Not this time but when next year comes round, it'll be all you Momma Johnson." He hands her a sheet "But, how will I know where to go if I don't go this time?" "Relax, everything will be taken care of by then. Just sign right there and we'll go get Sunshine here her school supplies" Martin explains, pointing at the paper. Deena's mom looks between her kids who still seemed to be bickering before sighing and signing the paper. "Perfect" Martin smiles, moving to leave but pausing. "That's right. We can't get supplies without the money" Martin turns back to Deena's mom.
"How much?" Deena's mom worries. Martin hands her another sheet, her mom looking over it confused. "Galleons? What's that?" "Wizard money of course. Don't worry, you can trade in your muggle money for wizard money" Martin explains. Her mom looks over the paper, frowning. "I'm not sure we have enough" Her mom admits, turning to look at Deena. Deena's expression subtly shifts then, but she tries not to let it show. Because, Martin had actually convinced her that trying this whole thing out was worth it, but now she might not be able to go because of money problems? Martin looks between all of them before checking his watch. "Why don't we all head down to Gringotts?" He brings up and the three turn to look at him confused. "Gringotts?" Deena repeats. Martin pulls a little bag out of his pocket, walking towards their fireplace.
He reaches his hand in and grabs whatever's in it, pulling it out. The other three notice what looked to be powder in his hands. He throws it into the fire and suddenly, the fire is now green. "What the-" Josh trails off, all three of them gaping. Martin smiles, turning back to look at them. "Come on, Johnson's. Urkle, you first" Martin says, looking at Josh. "Urkle?" Josh asks and Martin shrugs, motioning for him. "What exactly am I doing?" Josh wonders. "Oh, right. I should probably explain first. This is floo powder. You throw it into a fire place and you just tell it where you want to go and you'll get there" Martin explains. "Like, transportation?" Deena asks and Martin thinks it over. "Yeah" He nods. The three look between each other. "Is it safe?" Mrs. Johnson worries. "Of course it's safe! What'd you think I was just gonna push them into a fire and hope they burn?" Martin laughs but none of the others laugh with him.
"Okay, just-just climb into the fireplace" Martin says, motioning for Josh to go. Josh does so, hesitantly. He climbs into the fireplace, expecting to be burned but instead it feels like a spring breeze. "Now, all of you've gotta do is say Diagon Alley and you should end up in the leaky cauldron." "The-" "Shh! Shhh! Don't ask questions while in the fire! Say Diagon Alley and speak clearly when you say it!" Martin urges. "Uh, Diagon Alley!" Josh says and suddenly he's vanished. "Next" Martin smiles, throwing more floo powder in while Deena and Mrs. Johnson gape. "Where'd he go?" "Hopefully to Diagon Alley" Martin shrugs, motioning for Mrs. Johnson. Mrs. Johnson steps in and gives Deena a nervous reassuring smile before clearing her throat. "Diagon Alley" She disappears as well, the green fire swallowing her up, and Martin turns to look at Deena. "All right, Sunshine, your turn." Martin motions for her to go and she frowns as he throws in more floo powder.
She steps in, feeling the same spring breeze Josh had felt. "Diagon Alley" She says and suddenly she feels as if she's being pulled in different directions, spinning very fast. Their was roaring in her ears and she felt as if she was about to throw up everything she'd eaten throughout the day. And suddenly, she's on the ground in front of a very different fireplace, Josh and her mom stood above her. She squints her eyes, trying to make sense of it all. Josh and her mom help her to her feet and Martin steps out a second later with ease, checking his watch again. "All right, this way" He motions for them to follow and they pass by multiple different peculiar people, Martin seeming to know basically everyone there was he nodded and waved at basically the entire bar.
They step out into a tiny courtyard, Mrs. Johnson holding both Josh and Deena's hands so she doesn't lose sight of them. Martin pulls something out of his pocket, what looked to be a fancy stick as Deena referred to it and he starts tapping the wall three times and suddenly, the wall has opened, revealing people milling about, kids running past and huge buildings towering over them. "This is Diagon Alley, where you can get all of your wizard or witch needs" Martin explains, smiling at all of them. Mrs. Johnson looked around in surprise while Josh looked at everything in excitement. Deena couldn't understand it though. This didn't make sense. None of this was real. It couldn't have been. Someone bumps into her while she looks around at everyone and finds a girl a little shorter than her, carrying a cat. She had long black hair that was tied into a neat pony tail and piercing dark brown eyes as she glared at Deena. "Excuse you" She replies, giving Deena a look. "You bumped into me" Deena points out.
The girl ignores her, giving her another glare before walking away while Deena stares after her with a frown. Meanwhile, Josh stares after the girl with wide eyes, almost like he can't believe a girl could be so pretty. Deena elbows him and he snaps out of it. "Come on" She says, dragging him after their mom and Martin. "Did you see her?" Josh asks in surprise. Deena raises an eyebrow at him and he shakes his head. "You know what I mean" "Just focus, will you?" Deena sighs out and Josh takes one last glance back but the short girl's nowhere to be seen. They end up in front of this large white building, much bigger and taller than any of the other buildings that lined the cobblestone street. They start to head up the stairs to the big bronze doors and notice someone or something stood in front of it, wearing a scarlet and gold uniform. "What is that?" Josh asks in amazement. "It's a goblin" Martin informs them.
The thing was even shorter than Josh, who was only 9, and wore a beard with long slim fingers and long feet as well. He bows to them, holding the door open for the group and Mrs. Johnson can't help but to pull her kids a little away from him. Josh sends him an excited wave while Deena stares him down in disbelief. They walk through the doors and the bronze doors close behind them as they now stand in front of another set of double doors, these ones silver. They had words engraved in them which Josh is quick to read out.
'Enter, stranger, but take heed
Of what awaits the sin of greed,
For those who take, but do not earn,
Must pay dearly in their turn,
So if you seek beneath our floors
A treasure that was never yours,
Thief, you have been warned, beware
Of finding more than treasure there'
"Nothing to worry about as long as you're not stealing" Martin waves away their worries, as more goblins hold the doors open for them, bowing them inside where a marble hall awaits them. They're greeted by the sight of about a hundred goblins sat behind long counters that lined the edge of the hall, all of them scribbling things down or examining stones. And then there were a lot more doors leading out of the room that Goblins would lead visitors in and out of. Martin leads the group to the counter, stopping in front of a Goblin. "Hi there. We have some muggles here who have never been before. We were hoping to exchange some of their money for ours" Martin explains. The Goblin scrutinizes each of them before turning back to Martin.
"How much Muggle money?" He wonders. Martin looks to Mrs. Johnson who was already fiddling nervously with her purse. She looks over at her kids who were both watching her expectantly, but Deena could tell something was off. She knew her family wasn't exactly poor, but they weren't as well off either. They always seemed to be struggling with money problems, even if their mom desperately tried to hide it. Noticing her expression now, mostly centered on Josh, she took it into her own hands and decided Josh didn't need to know how bad their struggle was at only 9 years old.
"Hey, Josh, I thought I saw that girl again when we were walking in here. You wanna go try and make a new friend?" Deena asks, looking down at her little brother. "Oh, but I want to-" Josh motions to the Goblin. "Your sister's right, honey. Why don't you two go explore for a bit and we'll meet you out there?" "Aw!" Josh complains but one warning glance from Deena and he stops himself while she leads him out, both of them nodding at the Goblin outside that holds the doors open for them. They walk down the steps, Josh frowning back at the building while Deena looks around the crowded cobblestone path. She bites her bottom lip, looking at the different shops, her eyes landing on a shop called 'Quality Quidditch Supplies'.
Deena grabs her brother's hand and leads him through the throng of people, stopping outside the shop curiously. Boys around her age seemed to be gawking at brooms displayed in the front windows. Deena steps into the shop, the bell ringing above her head while Josh looks around curiously. "What's Quidditch?" He wonders curiously, eyeing what looked to be a robe, though it was colored with blue and silver. Deena was looking over one of the brooms people seemed to be gawking over, wondering what was so important about it. Do people really care about what kind of broom they buy if it'll sweep things up just the same? She's brought out of it by noticing a girl her age talking to her brother and makes her way back over.
"I can't wait till my second year. I'm gonna be an awesome Quidditch star" The girl smiles, holding up one of the robes he had been looking at. Josh was obviously nervous talking to this girl and he was awkwardly stumbling over his words. "Josh, who's your friend?" Deena cuts in, looking over the girl curiously. "Hey, do you like Quidditch too?" The girl wonders. "Uh..." Deena trails off awkwardly and the girl looks her over. "I get it. Muggle-born?" The girl asks, looking between them. "If you mean, new to this...place...then, yes?" Deena frowns, feeling nervous under the girl's intense expression. The girl breaks out into a smile though, shrugging. "That's okay! We're all going to the same place anyways so we're all pretty cool. I'm Reagan Kalivoda" Reagan holds up a hand for each of them and the siblings exchange a look before shaking her outstretched hands.
"So, what is Quidditch then?" Josh asks. "It's our sport! Just like you guys have football, well, we have Quidditch. We fly on broomsticks and have to throw the Quaffle into one of the three hoops and there are other balls as well." "You fly on broomsticks?" Deena asks incredulously, looking back at one of the brooms she had been looking at. "Yeah! Isn't it awesome? I've been practicing for a bit now, for when I tryout for the team, so I like to think I'm pretty good with a broom. My brother Simon, on the other hand, well..." Reagan looks off somewhere and the two look over as well to see a boy that looks a lot like Reagan, who held one of the brooms, but seemed to be dancing with it while he looked himself over in a mirror. "He's a bit of an oddball" Reagan says. "Simon!" Reagan waves him over and he runs over, looking between his sister and Deena and Josh. "Hey, sis, who are they?" Simon asks, looking over them. "Simon, these are my new friends Deena and Josh...uh, what did you say your last name was?" Reagan wonders.
"Johnson" Josh answers. "Right, Johnson. Guys, this is my twin brother, Simon" Reagan introduces. "Hey, dudes, how's it going? Are you all first years too?" Simon asks, smiling between them. "I am. Josh is only 9" Deena replies and Josh nods. "Cool! I can already imagine the start of a beautiful friendship" Simon says, slinging an arm over Deena's shoulders. "But we barely know you" Deena points out. "Now you do!" Simon shrugs, smiling at her. Deena looks between the two twins and slightly smiles as well, glad she's already made friends.
"Deena, Josh" Both of them look over to see Martin and Mrs. Johnson waving them over. "We should probably go now." Deena motions to them. "No problem. Hey, find us on September 1st when you get on train, yeah? We can sit together" Reagan tells her and Deena nods with a smile. The twins both wave and smile at the two siblings as they leave the shop. "Who were they?" Mrs. Johnson wonders. "Just some new friends" Deena waves it off and Mrs. Johnson nods, pulling out a sack full of what was most likely wizard money. "What is all this?" Deena wonders. "These ones are Galleons" he holds up a gold one. "And then we've got the silver ones which are Sickles and then these little bronze things here are Knuts" Martin explains. "This seems like a lot" Deena brings up. Martin and Mrs. Johnson share a small secretive smile with each other as Deena and Josh look over the money.
"Well, come on then! You've got all these shops to go to and supplies to buy. Go crazy!" Martin says. Deena looks at all of the different shops, taking out her school supply list. They end up buying her school robes and uniform in 'Madam Malkin's Robes for All Occasions', and Deena was excited they allowed her to get some black slacks instead of the skirts they force girls to wear apparently. They also got some parchment and quills at another shop because that's apparently all they use at Hogwarts, very different to her usual go to in school, paper and mechanical pencils. They went to 'Flourish and Blotts' to get Deena's books and the miscellaneous items. They stopped for some ice cream at 'Florean's Fortescue's Ice Cream Parlor' where Deena makes fun of Josh for getting just plain vanilla. ("We're at a magic ice cream shop and you get vanilla? Look at all of these flavors" "I like vanilla!"). They head into the apothecary's for potion ingredients which had a horrible odor that made Deena sick to her stomach so she had to wait outside while Martin got the supplies for her.
They get her wand at Ollivander's where Ollivander finds, according to him, a perfect wand for her. It's made out of Rowan Wood with unicorn hair as it's core with supple flexibility, it's length being 12 1/4". And last but not least, Deena gets herself a black cat, which she names Merryboy. ("What kind of name is that?" "I don't know! It sounds like an old timey wizard animal name!"). The Johnson's return to their house and Martin leaves some floo powder for their fireplace, claiming they'll need it for next year. "i should get going" Martin sighs, looking down at his watch. "Are you sure you can't stay for dinner?" Mrs. Johnson offers. "No, it's all right. I have other things to do." Martin heads to the door, Deena following behind him. "I almost forgot" he hands her a ticket and she looks it over. "Make sure you're at King's Cross on September 1st before 11 or else you'll miss your train. It's on platform 9 3/4" "9 3/4? Is that even a thing?" "To you it is. Just look at the wall between 9 and 10" Martin shrugs. He gives her a pat on the shoulder, heading out the door. "Will I see you there? At Hogwarts?" Deena calls after him. Martin pauses to look back at her. "Course, Sunshine. Who else will you have to mow the lawn?" He winks and she let's out a chuckle while he waves, disappearing. And let's just say, Deena could not wait to start school, even if she didn't believe she could do magic.