Chapter 1 : Moving in, the odd kid
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The Potters moved in one year after I was born. Right from the start, my parents said that they were a bit strange, but so were the tenants in the council flats opposite. With them, the Potters seemed to bring an aura of happy families and random pieces of furniture. Along with their oddities they also brought a rather large and eccentric family. There were four Aunts, five Uncles, a God-son who came to stay on a monthly basis, a growing number of cousins and one set of grandparents. The majority of these family members had that same flame red hair as Mrs Potter, or Ginny as she is called. Each one of these Weasley’s had numerous anecdotes to tell about Mr Potter, or Harry, each more hilarious than the last. Yet through all of the meetings with them, it felt like there was something missing, something that they were holding back from us. But as a child I was used to that.
My father visited the day after they moved in and from that moment Harry and my dad hit it off strait away. They used to spend ages in the shed at the end of our garden tinkering with bits and bobs, drinking gallons of tea at a time. Goodness knows what they actually accomplish up there, but mum says was male bonding time.
James and I were placed together whilst our mothers chatted in the kitchen. Apparently, we also hit it off and we became friends, I would share my building blocks with him. Rather than throw them at him as I had supposedly done to other children my age.
Slowly our families grew; Ginny was pregnant with Albus within six months of their arrival. Then my brother Mark arrived and three years after that Lily Potter joined the little clutch. We were quite a bonnie bunch; the four of us who could walk would spend hours chasing each other in the garden and exploring the mystic lands of the Potters garden. Lily would sit on her mat and watch us with her fist in her mouth and eyes wide with glee.
Soon it was time that both James and I started school. We did so, at our local primary school, which was a short walk down a footpath. Every morning we would walk together, our little rucksacks bobbing up and down as we walked.
We were placed in the same classes all the way through our education, causing nuisance when necessary and sometimes working hard.
I was in year three when strange things started happening to me, books would fall off shelves, balloons would explode and once a flower even changed colour. But at the time I just ignored them, getting on with playing and just being a child. For all I knew this was a figment of my imagination.
Year Six came all too fast for me, and soon we were leaving. The hot topic of the moment was which of the local secondary schools we would be attending.
“James. Which school are you going to?” I asked casually one day. We were situated in the front playground, just outside the school hall.
“I’m not. I’m going to boarding school,” he said in a slightly glum tone.
“Where?” I asked, a little shocked that my best friend had neglected to tell me that he was leaving to go to boarding school.
“Scotland” he didn’t look at me, just watched as a car drove past at high speed on the other side of the fence.
“What!” I exclaimed. Bath would have been fine, Wales, London, anywhere in the South. But Scotland, that was so far away. I would never get to see him again.
“You’ll see me...” he said trying to smile at me, but finding it impossible.
“No I won’t! You will be gone for most of the year, probably making a new best friend and forgetting all about me. Then when you get back you won’t be the same; you’ll be all snobby and talk with a posh accent.” I said verging on tears at the thought of losing James to someone else.
“You’re my best friend; I will never get another one. It will always be you,” he smiled grimly.
“Pinkie promise?” he held out his little finger in a gesture of solidarity.
For a moment I looked him in his wide brown eyes, and just thought. It was silly to be doing this, I would be a year seven next year, and I would be mature and act sensible. After a few seconds had lapsed, I linked his finger with my own and shook it. The deal was now sealed, but would he keep it?
Only time would tell.
I returned home that day a sad and slightly disheartened child, it felt like half of me had been torn away already and that there was nothing to live for. I recounted my tale of woe to my parents who sympathised with my somewhat glum outlook for the next few weeks.
James and I were to be parted for the first time in as long as we could remember and it was not going to be pretty.
Well there you go, the first chapter... hope you liked it. Leave your thoughts in the box.
I promise that I will reply, always
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