Platform nine and three quarters was blazing with activity, families saying goodbye to their children, school friends greeting each other after the long break and suitcases and owl cages littering the platform. Alice inhaled the familiar smells of the train station. Living only a half hours drive from London she often came to the city to visit her muggle and wizard friends.
“ALICE!!!!” Alice’s eye sight was suddenly obscured by a shoulder and she felt arms wrap her in a warm embrace.
Rowena Amelia Bringam, one of the few witches which Alice felt that she could really connect to. Long faced and raven haired Rowena was Alice’s opposite in looks, yet their personalities were as similar as sisters. Loud and friendly, Rowena always seemed to cause laughter to fall from Alice’s lips.
“Row,” Alice laughed, “Stop you are embarrassing me!” this comment only made Rowena hug her tighter. A voice was calling to the young witches and wizards telling them that it was time for them to bord the train.
Rowena finally let Alice go. “Alice my wonderful friend you seem to have grown taller over summer!” This was an on going joke between the two friends as Alice was the shortest witch in their year.
“I have as a matter of fact!” Alice stood on her tiptoes, Rowena laughed. They walked arm in arm to the train laughing all the way. Rowena was telling Alice a funny story about her brother on a broomstick, when a boy pushed Alice aside as he hurried on to the train. Rowena caught her before she fell to the ground.
“That Frank Longbottom,” scowled Rowena. “I swear the amount of times he ‘accidentally’ knocks into you. He is ether trying to kill you or is very clumsy.”
Alice brushed dirt from her robe, “Well we both know it is the first reason. He is always trying to beat me! Weather it be in a chess game or a potions test.”
“You two are the top in our potions class. Ravenclaw would never have won the house cup if it hadn’t have been for all the points you earned us. You are a smart cookie!” Rowena exclaimed as she pinched Alice’s cheek in a mock grandmotherly way.
“Gryffindor was not close behind. If it weren’t for that James Potter and Sirius ‘stud-muffin’ Black and their pranks they would have beaten us.” James and Sirius were two Gryffindor boys in the same year as Alice and Rowena. They were prone to loosing points for Gryffindor on account of their pranks.
Alice checked each train compartment as they walked along the isle. They were all full but one. Everyone had avoided this particular compartment. James and Sirius had bewitched one of the cushions to fart and burp the previous train trip at the end of last year. Obviously no one had taken the time to remove the spell or perhaps could not stand the smell as to go quite near enough to return it to normal. Rowena held her nose and picked up the farting cushion. She opened the train window and poked the cushion out. She watched with satisfaction as it landed with a dull thump on the platform beneath the window. A group of disapproving parents scowled at Rowena and the farting cushion.
Alice drew out her wand and inhaled an unwanted breath and muttered the word, “Sentirfleur!” the room filled with the smell of flower. “Rowena do you really think it is necessary to litter on the train track?” Alice wagged her finger at her friend imitating the exact manner of their Herbology teacher Professor Fastered.
Professor Fastered was passionate about the environment and was said to have cried when a senior student refused to remove her rubbish from the ground.
“Sit down you goose,” said Rowena.
With a low rumble the train began to move Alice and Rowena crammed their faced to the window and waved enthusiastically at their parents as the train slowly increased. Alice’s mother blew her a kiss and her Gran gave her the thumbs up. Alice chuckled to herself, her Gran may be stern at times but she really was a good laugh.
The train speed past the rows of London homes and raced toward the horizon. The sun was climbing higher in the sky as Alice and Rowena gossiped about their holidays. It wasn’t until late morning that the food trolley trundled past their compartment.
“Two pumpkin juice please,” said Rowena’s as she drew a sickle from her pocket.
The trolley lady exchanged it for the beverages and continued on her journey down the isle.
Rowena handed a juice to Alice.
“Please let me pay for that,” Alice said as she rummaged in her bag for her purse.
“It’s on the house I want to celebrate the start to a new year!” said Rowena cheerfully.
“Well don’t be too surprised if you find some chocolate frogs next to your bed side table tomorrow,” replied Alice.
Rowena laughed, “Haven’t you heard the saying ‘You always can get a free lunch?’” asked Rowena.
“I think the words are ‘There is no such thing as a free lunch’” Alice corrected her.
“Shut up and drink your juice,” Rowena teased.
“To a new year,” Alice said as she raised her cup.
“A new year,” repeated Rowena.
Write a Review The Secret of a Lily: A Love smell is in the Air