Bouncing with glee, Victoire held onto her father’s hand the entire way to the barrier between platforms 9 and 10. Afterwards, she hastily let go and grabbed her luggage cart. Her excitement diminished a little at the sight of the very solid-looking brick wall, which she’d never gone through alone before, but felt better instantly at the feel of her father’s hand gently squeezing her shoulder. She glanced up.
“Do at a bit of a run if you’re nervous, Vic. And just remember, you’ve done this many times before.” He smiled down at her and she beamed back. Then she glanced at her mother and her grin grew wider. Her mother was staring at the wall with a look of disgust mixed with apprehension on her face. This was her first time going through the barrier to Platform 9 ¾ as well.
“I steel do not know why we ‘ave to go through a brick wall. At Beauxbatons, eet was much seempler. We ‘ad carriages, not a train and-”
“Yes Fleur, dear, but this is Hogwarts not Beauxbatons and the students arrive by train,” Victoire’s father reminded her with an air that said quite plainly that he had heard her speech several times before.
“Yes, Mum, the Hogwarts Express is brilliant! There’s a candy trolley and-”
“Yes well, Victoire, you’d better go ahead now. Go on, that’s it,” Bill interrupted, seeing that Fleur had opened her mouth to retort. He smiled to himself; when it came to anything and everything related to comparing Beauxbatons and Hogwarts, his wife’s French blood showed, meaning she’d sometimes enter heated debates about the two with their eleven year old.
Victoire glanced up at her father before bracing her shoulders and pushing the cart bravely toward the barrier. Muggles passing by jostled her on her way, but eventually she made it to the barrier. At this time, she had accelerated to a run and she took as gulp before plunging through the barrier.
Panting, Victoire emerged joyfully on the other side, her parents following suit. She saw the owls, the cats, the parents all crowed around the platform, shrouded in stream. Students were leaning out of compartment windows on the train, shouting goodbyes and greetings to their friends and family. It was just like Victoire remembered, and she was absolutely in love with the sight. She didn’t think that she could ever get over the wonder of the first day of school.
“Where are they? Where are they?” Victoire asked her father loudly, straining to be heard over the hustle and bustle going on around the platform.
“We’ll find them,” he answered. Victoire nodded and then glanced at her mother and laughed. Fleur’s eyes were darting back and forth as she took in the sight before her. Although there was still slight abhorrence on her face out of loyalty to her old school, wonder was now mixed in with it.
Suddenly, Victoire squealed. Out of the gloom, a head covered in turquoise hair appeared, followed by a black-haired, bespectacled head. Victoire ran forward and hugged her grinning best friend.
Teddy gave a quick look around the platform before pulling Victoire behind a barrier while the adults chatted. “Hi, Vic. Excited to be finally going to Hogwarts?”
“Excited? I don’t think that even begins to describe what I’m feeling!” Victoire exclaimed, waving her hands about distractedly. “Teddy, we’re going to have so much fun! You’ll have to show me where all my classes are so I don’t get lost and then we can go visit Hagrid together and we can spend all our time doing our homework together in the Gryffindor common room and-”
“Whoa, slow down there kid. I won’t be able to show to your classes because I’m older and we might not even be in the same House. Anyway, I have other friends, too, Vic; we’ll still talk and stuff, but not all the time.”
Victoire disregarded this. “We’ll definitely be in Gryffindor together and we’re best friends, Ted. We’ll always have time for each other. Oh this is going to be the best year, Teddy!”
If Victoire detected the nervousness in Teddy’s smile, she didn’t show it, but she still continued beam up at her best friend.
In no time, they both said goodbye to the adults, Teddy hugging Harry and Victoire her mother and father, and were boarding the train.
“Make sure to write us wit your owl, Victoire,” Fleur called as she waved to her daughter. And with that, the Hogwarts Express was off.
Teddy led, or rather Victoire followed, to the compartment his mates were sitting in. As they entered, Victoire came boldly in behind Teddy, expecting to be introduced proudly by him. Instead, he just mumbled, “Guys, this is my friend, Victoire,” before sitting down and immediately began chatting and joking with his second year friends.
Victoire was sure that he just wanted to catch up with them, and that she would learn their names later. She sidled into the corner next to Teddy and proceeded to spend the entire train ride in utter bliss; not caring that Teddy had barely said two words to her, or that he had yet to introduce his friends.
It was only when she had to change into her robes and when the train finally stopped and she followed Hagrid to the lake that Victoire separated herself from Teddy’s side.
Victoire nervously patted down her sleek, blonde hair as she followed the other first years from the waiting room into the Great Hall. She was so anxious that she barely noticed all the stares that were directed at her. Whether this was because they recognized her as the first Weasley to begin Hogwarts since the war or because she was part veela, she didn’t know.
After the Sorting Hat sung its song, Victoire’s nerves intensified ten-fold. Soon, the names were being called in alphabetical order, and it was times like these that Victoire absolutely hated being a Weasley. It meant that she was always last or next to last on alphabetical lists. True to her name, several eleven-year-olds were sorted before Professor Longbottom finally called, “Weasley, Victoire!”
Victoire stumbled to the stool as took one panicky glance at Teddy before the hat was dropped over her head. She jumped as she heard a voice begin to speak in her head. A yes, another Weasley, so most would expect you to be in Gryffindor, would they not? But I see brains, oh yes, plenty of talent in here and quite loyal to your friends. That would be Ravenclaw or Hufflepuff, would it not? Interesting… I don’t see very much Slytherin in your mind; being a Weasley, I’m sure you’re glad of that. But yes, you’re very intelligent, that’s most definitely your defining quality. Don’t worry dear, there’s courage in here, too, but I think it’d better be-
Just as Victoire was about to scream Not Ravenclaw! to the hat in her heard, she heard it shout her house to the hall.
“RAVENCLAW!” The hat bellowed. Victoire felt her heart drop.
She wasn’t in Gryffindor. She was in Ravenclaw. Ravenclaw, not Gryffindor. She wasn’t with Teddy or in the House where all her family had been and probably would be. Not Gryffindor, she was in stinking Ravenclaw.
Victoire pulled the hat off her head and dragged her feet as she walked to the cheering Ravenclaw table. She glanced over at Teddy, expecting to see a devastated expression, but felt her heart lift a bit as she saw him mouth “Don’t worry, you’ll be fine,” and give her the thumbs up.
What was she thinking? She had nothing the worry about! Ravenclaw wasn’t a bad house and she and Teddy would always be best mates!
Victoire headed to the Ravenclaw table with a renewed bounce in her step. How very wrong she was.
It was just after Christmas of her first year and Victoire loved Hogwarts. Sure, she didn’t see Teddy as much as she’d like to, but as they were in different houses this was quite understandable. No one in her family had been disappointed at her being in Ravenclaw and she’d even made some new Ravenclaw friends: Jenny, Meredith, and Pippa! Victoire was having the time of her life at Hogwarts.
As she approached Teddy at lunch one day, hoping to tell him the story of how a boy in her Potions class had blown up his cauldron that day, she saw him glance up at her advance and gulp. He got up and motioned her to follow him out of the Great Hall.
Teddy led her to a corridor that led off from the entrance hall and quickly turned around to face her, looking nervous. Victoire immediately launched into her story.
“Oh Teddy, the funniest thing happened today in Potions!” But Teddy wasn’t listening.
Instead, he waved his hand for her to be silent, and she directly shut up. He wringed his hands and glanced at the floor like he always did when he was anxious. Victoire giggled and wacked his arm playfully. “Oh, out with it Teddy,” she said. “Just spit out whatever it is that you want to tell me!”
Teddy stared at her before clearing his throat and beginning, “Well, listen Victoire, the thing is, and I know you’re not going to like this and I’m sorry, but, erm, well, I don’t think we should talk or see each other as much as we’ve been doing.”
Victoire froze. She gaped at Teddy for a long moment before slowly asking, “W-what?”
“It’s just, I’m in Gryffindor, and you’re in Ravenclaw. I’m a second year, and you’re, well, you’re a first year. It’s not really cool for us to be seen talking; it’s just not how things are done at Hogwarts, you know? And my friends think I’m acting like a prat when I spend too much time with you so… I mean, we can still friends, but… I guess what I’m trying to say is that we should only be best mates during holidays… like C-Christmas and summer and…”
Victoire couldn’t believe her ears. Teddy was saying that he didn’t want to be friends? That he was embarrassed of her? That he wanted to hide the fact that they had been best friends since they were little just because he couldn’t take a few teasing jokes from his friends he barely knew? How dare he? He couldn’t just blow her off. And with that, Victoire found her voice.
“Teddy Lupin,” she said with growing anger. “Are you telling me that you don’t want to be seen with me simply because I’m a girl, or- or just because I’m younger or I’m a Ravenclaw or-”
“No! It’s not like that I swear! I-”
“Don’t talk to me ever again, Teddy Lupin.”
This time, it was Teddy’s turn to look shocked. “Wha-what?”
“You heard me. That’s what you want, isn’t it? You don’t want to talk to me anyway or ‘be seen talking to me’ as you so gently put it. Well that’s it, Teddy, you got your wish: I won’t be your friend anymore. I’ve got plenty of other friends. Goodbye, Lupin, I hope you’re happy.” With that Victoire turned on her heal and stormed back to the Great Hall.
It only took Teddy a few moments to recover from his shock. He wasn’t too worried; he even chuckled to himself. Typical Victoire: overreacting to every little thing. He’d give it two, maybe three days, before she came back and apologized. After all, it wasn’t like he had said they couldn’t be friends at all, just not very openly while they were at Hogwarts. He couldn’t let his mates think he was a girl-lover.
He’d still be friends with Victoire; they’d still be best mates forever; she couldn’t stay mad at him forever. There was no way that Victoire would keep her promise. How very wrong he was.