I watched as the dwarfs scurried around the small house, collecting this and that as they went.
‘Where are you taking me again?’ I asked, my thoughts where going everywhere at once, but I had to know what was going to happen to me while I was here – where ever here was.
The one dwarf dressed in blue stopped and turned to me, looking annoyed, ‘To Cair Paravel, how many times to we have to say it human?’
‘Hermione, my name is Hermione.’ I snapped, ‘Not human.’
He threw his small hands up in surrender, ‘Fine, fine.’
I crossed my arms once more and lean against the wall, annoyed. I had to crouch slightly or risk hitting my head on the ceiling.
‘What are your names, anyway?’ I asked in frustration.
‘I’m Darkin, and that’s Martilian.’ Darkin said, pointing over towards the second dwarf.
‘Okay, and what are these-these Queens and Kings names?’ I asked, a thousand other questions running through my head.
‘There’s Queen Susan the Gentle, and Queen Lucy the Valiant.’ Darkin said his tone strictly monotone.
‘Then there’s High King Peter the Magnificent, and King Edmund the Just.’ Martilian said from his place in the kitchen, ‘They where the four sons of Adam and daughters of Eve to free us from the spell of the hundred-year winter by the evil White Witch.’
‘Okay.’ I said, trying to absorb as much information as I could. But really the only part I could focus on was the White Witch part. Apparently sorceress weren’t wanted here; I look in a sharp breath and reached my hand down to see if my wand was on me. It was.
‘So-so, sorceresses…aren’t allowed around here? Aren’t there any nice ones?’ I asked, trying to sound calm.
Darkin spit off to the side, ‘I’ve never met a nice one.’
I gulped, ‘I see.’
Martilian walked in, his arms filled with small different colored bundles, ‘Alright, so if you’re down with all of your questions Hermillon.’
‘Hermione, its Hermione.’ I corrected quietly.
He snuffed and set his bundle down, ‘If we want to make it to the castle by night we better start off now.’
I turned around to look at him, ‘Tonight?’
‘Yes, we only have enough food storage for the two of us, and since you’re slightly—’ He gave me a quick look up and down, ‘—a bit larger then a dwarf, we probably would have to use all of our food to feed us tonight. We might even have to go into the winter storage.’
I sighed, tightening my robe around me. If ever there was a time to feel subconscious, it was now.
‘Alright.’ I replied, ducking as I started towards the door.
The dwarfs walked beside me in silents as we started on the path to the castle. Unlike Hogwarts, it looked as if the sun where just setting when in England it was probably way past midnight.
The one thing I did have to admit to myself was that the Dusk here was beautiful. Purple streaked the sky in so many different colors; the stars slowly came out from their hiding places to take their place in the night sky. And the forest seemed to come alive. As we walked I caught glimpses of animals running through the trees, I could have even sworn I saw a few centaurs in one place.
Sooner then I thought, we had reached the castle. The moon had just reached its place in the sky when we walked up the stone steps to Cair Paravel.
Two guards stood at the entrance, each dressed in a coat of armor, a red lion crest in the center of their breastplate.
‘Halt, who comes to Paravel at such a late hour?’ The first said.
‘Darkin and Martilian of the Western Forest sirs, and Hermione of the Hogwarts.’ Darkin stepped forwards and said.
‘Of Hogwarts? There is no such place. Why are you spinning these lies?’ The second said, resting his hand on the hilt of his sword.
‘She’s a Daughter of Eve.’ Martilian said boldly.
I looked down to the dwarf but held my tongue.
‘A Daughter of Eve?’ The first asked.
The dwarf nodded.
‘Come through then, I will send the page to ask the Kings and Queens if the visitor will be accepted at this time.’
The first guard left, leaving the second guard to stand at the gate.
I took my chance and bent down to the dwarf, ‘Why did you lie? I’m not a Daughter of Eve! My mother wasn’t even named—’
‘Yes, but Eve is the mother of all humankind. Here, in our land, all humans are sons and daughters of Adam and Eve.’ Martilian explained.
I nodded and stood back up just as the first guard came back to us.
‘They will see you, just though those doors, Armeg will show you to the throne room.’ He nodded to the door to the left and went back to his post.
‘They will decide how to get you back to your country of Hogwarts.’ Darkin said as we started towards the doors.
Once we were inside the doors a willowy woman walked up to us, her hair was a rich beautiful brown that fell to her waste and her skin was a soft porcelain while her eyes where a fierce violet.
‘I am Armeg. Please, follow me.’ She turned just as quickly as she talked and started down the hall. She walked just as gracefully as a dancer, but she had a sort of strength to her steps.
We followed her down the passageway, beautiful pictures where depicted on the walls. Some of battles, others of coronations, some of, what I guessed, Queens and Kings of old.
‘In here is the throne room, the Queen Susan and Queen Lucy are out this evening but you will be able to see the High King Peter and King Edmund.’ Armeg replied as the guards stepped aside, ‘You may go in now.’
I let out a breath I didn’t know I had been holding as the guards steps once more up to the doors to open them.
This was it; hopefully, in here I would find a way home.
‘Peter, the page is here to see us.’ Edmund called from his brother’s door.
‘What about? It’s half past seven, I thought we had finished all of our appointments for the day.’ Peter said, walking into the adjoined room.
The page, a young boy with glassy sapphire eyes and a mess of golden-brown tresses, stood in front of the two kings.
‘What is it Aeron?’ Peter asked, confusion plainly written on his face.
‘The guard at the gate says that you have three visitors. Darkin and Martilian of the Western Forest, and a Daughter of Eve that wish to speak with you tonight.’ Aeron replied.
Peter nodded, ‘Send them in, what is one more council for this evening?’
Edmund followed his brother to the throne room, ‘I wonder what it could be about.’
‘I don’t know, but there is only one way to find out.’ Peter said, he took his seat on the throne, Edmund following suite on the chair next to Peter’s.
The doors began to open, Edmund and Peter’s eyes staying close to them. Both equally curious about the Daughter of Eve that the page hadn’t identified.
‘Darkin and Martilian of the Western Woods and Hermione of Hogwarts, Daughter of Eve.’ The guard stated.
‘Hogwarts?’ Edmund whispered to Peter.
Peter shook his head, before turning to their guest and smiling, ‘Welcome.’
The two dwarfs and the girl cautiously approached the throne. Edmund’s eyes followed the girl; she was average in height and couldn’t be any more then his age of sixteen.
She seemed to be taking in everything as she approached them, but there was a sense of apprehension in the way that she walked.
She was wearing a sort of school uniform, all black except for the white shirt around the collar and base of her sweater and the gold and red tie around her neck. She looked like someone from a boarding school in London, except for the fact that she was wearing a robe-like coat over her uniform. Never had he seen that before.
Her hair was a wild mess, chocolate brown curls seemed to be going every which way all the way down to her back. Her skin was a soft cream that just seemed to light up her brown eyes, which where set into a gentle, but determined, face.
‘Welcome Darkin and Martilian, who is the friend that you have brought with you?’ King Peter asked, standing from his chair.
‘Hermione Granger.’ I cut Martilian off before he could continue.
It was interesting to see how the two reacted to me.
I took the moment too study both of them.
The first, High King Peter, was tall; he couldn't have been anything older then the Weasley twins. He had a mess of straight dark-blonde tresses kept down by the golden circlet around his head, his eyes where bright and fierce blue, as were the features of his face.
The second, King Edmund, was slightly shorter, probably only a few inches taller then me. But his shoulders where set, as was the rest of him, you could see he stood tall and proud. He was definitely a swordsman.
Unlike his brother he had coarse coal-black hair, with more of a tousled look. His soft brown eyes where what caught me though, they where light and warm, unlike the rest of his tense stance.
He looked like he had a lot of training behind him, but he couldn’t have been much older then me.
Though again, I had more training in spells then most people would expect a sixth year to have.
‘So what is it that we can help you three with?’ King Peter asked.
‘I need to find my way back home.’ I explained, stepping in front of the two dwarfs.
King Peter laughed slightly, ‘And where would that be?’
‘Hogwarts, it’s a school in London.’ I said, I took a few more steps towards the Kings.
‘Hogwarts? I’ve never heard of it.’ King Peter replied.
‘Of-of course you wouldn’t have…you-you’re from this world, not mine.’ I said, confusion coating my voice.
The High King laughed again, ‘Oh, you are very mistaken Ms. Granger, I and my brother and sisters are from London ourselves.’
I had to swallow, my cover was blown. What would the Kings do if they found out it was a wizarding school? That I was a witch myself?
‘Oh, I-I didn’t know…’ I kept my eyes down, aware that King Edmund was watching me intensely. As if I was already an enemy.
‘Don’t worry, there was no way for you to know.’ King Peter replied.
‘Sorry its just—’ Just as I went to take a step forward, I tripped over my robe and landed – hard – on the marble floor.
I looked up just in time to see my cover being blown.
‘What type of school is this anyway?’ King Edmund asked, picking up my wand. I stopped for a second as he spoke, only King Peter had been the one to talk to me tonight, King Edmund had been the one to be studying me the entire time, but his voice was so strong, in control – it was almost like music for the beginnings of a battle, the anticipation one felt and adrenalin flowing in ones blood, played through certain notes off of a simple sheet of paper.
I looked down, to cowardly to look him in the eye, ‘It’s a magical school. I-I’m a…sorcerer.’
I couldn’t bring myself to say witch, it reminded me to much of the dwarfs talking about the White Witch. Although, hiding the word, covering it up, made me feel worse – because that was who I was. I was a witch.
I winced, waiting for something to happen. Anything. A sword to pierce me, to be picked up by my hair, something to cause pain to me.
I looked up slowly. King Edmund was still kneeling on the floor, my wand in the palm of his hand. King Peter looked down at me, probably wondering what to do with me. I didn’t dare look back at the dwarfs; I could picture their faces clear enough in my face.
After a forever of silents King Peter finally broke it.
‘I think we need to speak with Aslan.’ And that was all.
I sighed, trying to keep myself in check. While home just seemed to keep getting farther and farther away from me.