A week later, Violet was stood on a platform crowded with muggles in Kings Cross station, wondering, despite the great amounts of magic she had witnessed in her eleven years, how she was going to run through a solid barrier without obtaining series injuries. Grasping the handles of her trolley, she closed her eyes and ran straight forward, opening her eyes on the other side.
Platform nine and three quarters was crowded with families milling around, the air filled with excited voices, laughter and owl calls. Violet stood solemnly with her family, her grey eyes widening as she took in the amount of students crammed onto the comparatively small platform, the new sights and the gleaming scarlet engine which was the Hogwarts express. Minutes later, the whistle was blown, and there was a surge as the crowd of students began making their way towards the train. Astoria turned to her children
Goodbye, my darlings. Work hard, don’t make trouble-"
This was aimed at Scorpius, who scowled,
“-and have a good term. We’ll see you at Christmas.”
She turned expectantly to Draco, who nodded with little affection.
He patted Scorpius on the shoulder in an awkward manner and tried to hug Violet. She squirmed away, and he did not persist, his displays of affection always limited and incredibly forced. Their mother emitted a strange, muffled sob before bearing down on them, enveloping them in a suffocating hug. Scorpius wriggled away, embarrassed.
He picked up his trunk and walked away, without looking back. Seconds later, he realised Violet wasn’t following, and turned back to grab her hand with an irritated sigh.
She stumbled after him, looking back at her mother, who waved, before apparating.
They pushed through the crowds of friends towards a carriage already filled with with a group of Slytherins.
A broad shouldered, dark haired boy broke off mid way through conversation to greet them.
"How’ve you been?” Without waiting for a reply he looked at Violet,
"My sister, Violet. She’s a first year. This is Aiden Flint, he’s the Slytherin seeker.”
Flint nodded “Like my father. And this is Vincent Goyle, he’s a beater.”
The name seemed familiar to Violet.
"He’s the son of Dad’s friend,” Scorpius muttered.
Violet nodded. She didn’t much like Gregory Goyle, the man who she supposed was Vincent’s father. He was loud and large and reminded her of an obese troll.
"Have you heard? Potter’s sister’s starting this year. I saw them on the platform. With the mudblood family.”
"If there’s one thing you’ve got to do this year, it’s to avoid James Potter and his scrawny siblings, okay?”
"And Rose the weasel”, Goyle said. “That families bad for the whole wizarding community. Muggle mother, and their dad’s a massive muggle sympathiser. Bloody Weasleys .”
Violet sat mutely for the remainder of the journey. She didn’t particularly agree with Scorpius and his friends, but this was not unusual. As she watched the countryside flash by, and the sky turn from grey to black, she felt a strange longing for her mother, and for the anonymity of Malfoy Manor.
An hour into the journey, their privacy was interrupted by a plump witch with a trolley.
“Anything off the trolley, dears?” She asked, beaming a gap toothed smile at them.
Goyle bought a stack of cauldron cakes, which Violet thought privately he could have done without. Surprisingly, he thought to offer them round, even to Violet, before stuffing three into his mouth at once. Violet politely declined. She felt lonely and sick with nerves.
It was nightfall by the time they arrived at Hogsmeade Station. Violet stretched gratefully, her muscles cramping from lack of movement. A large figure loomed out of the dark
"Firs’ years this way! Firs’ years!”
“Go!” Scorpius hissed, pushing her towards the giant and disappearing into the group of older students milling around the platform.
Violet was jostled towards the giant by the crowd of nervous first years. She ended up standing directly in front of him. He looked down at her, his beetle black eyes crinkling into a smile which she could barely see from beneath his beard.
“Hello, are you a firs’ year then?” She nodded mutely.
“This way then. My name’s Rubeus Hagrid, keeper of keys and grounds at ‘Ogwarts. Teach a fair bit o’ care of magical creatures too. Bes’ subject if yer ask me. An’ who’s this? Well I never, another Potter!”
Violet turned to find a redheaded girl next to her.
“Hello Hagrid.” The girl grinned, not seeming the least bit nervous.
“So, tha’s the last Potter come to Hogwarts.” Hagrid said, chuckling “Never could’a imagined it, feels like jus’ yesterday tha’ yer dad were standing here. Where’s Hugo, Lily?”
She shrugged and turned to Violet. “Hi, I’m Lily. I’m a first year too. Do you want to come in a boat with me? I was going with Hugo but he’s disappeared off somewhere with a load of other boys.” She pulled a face and Violet laughed, forgetting what the older Slytherins had told her about the Potters. The girls followed Hagrid and the other first years to a lake, it’s murky waters decorated with wooden rowing boats.
"Alrigh’, find a boat and we’ll be off!” Hagrid shouted. With some trepidation, the first years began to climb into the boats, which when full, set off across the lake of their own accord. Violet and Lily sat in a rowing boat with two giggling girls who introduced themselves as Leila and Amelia.
"What's your name?", Lily asked.
“Violet? “ She squinted through the dark to read the name of Violet’s trunk “V.A. Malfoy. You’re a Malfoy ? » Violet nodded
“Is your dad Draco Malfoy by any chance?” Violet nodded
“And yours is Harry Potter.” It wasn’t a question. Both girls looked at one another, each knowing what the other was thinking. They were supposed to be enemies from birth. Violet suspected Lily had received the same warnings from her family as she had, although perhaps not so severely. Leila and Amelia had not noticed the tension between the two.
“Your dad’s Harry Potter? My mother danced with him at the Yule Ball. Before he knew your mum, of course.”
“My mum dated your uncle” Amelia giggled “Her name’s Lavender. She says she had to break up with him, and that he was so clingy!” Both girls sniggered.
“That’s not true!” Lily retorted hotly “He never mentions her. And he’s been with my aunt for years and years, so there!”
Violet gave her a sympathetic smile and raised her eyes towards the giggling girls. After a pause, Lily returned the smile. It seemed a friendship could be formed after all.
Hogwarts school of witchcraft and wizardry was larger and more imposing than Violet could have imagined. She was glad to have Lily with her as they walked through the large front doors and into the entrance hall. A forbidding witch with steel grey hair wound into a tight bun, wearing dark green robes came to meet them.
“Welcome, first years”, she spoke in a no nonsense Scottish accent.
“I am professor McGonagall, head of Gryffindor house, teacher of transfiguration, and headmistress at Hogwarts. In a moment you will make your way into the great hall to be sorted into your houses. As I’m sure you know, these houses will be yours for the remainder of your education at Hogwarts school. Now, my duties are more divided then when many of your parents were at this school. I must firstly go and welcome the older students. If you could wait here.” She strode off.
Lily turned to her
“I reckon I’m going to be in Gryffindor. That’s where all my family went. What about you?”
Violet shrugged. “Slytherin probably. It goes back a long way. I think my granddad would disown me if I wasn’t.”
Lily laughed, and then peered at Violet closely. “Surely you’re joking?”
“I wouldn’t put it past him.” Violet said glumly “And my father’s just the same. My mother’s not as bad. She was a Slytherin too. They’re not all evil.”
“Just most of them,” Lily laughed “I’m joking!” She added quickly.
“Oi, Lily, where’ve you been?” A slightly gangly boy had appeared at Lily’s elbow.
“I could ask you the same thing!” She retorted “Violet, this is Hugo.”
“Hi!” Hugo said enthusiastically. He turned back to Lily “Lil, did you hear? Another Malfoy’s joined this year. Dad was mad, said we should try and jinx her as soon as possible. Bet she’s a right git, just like her brother. I wonder who she is?”
Lily’s face was puce as she struggled to speak.
Violet jumped in to save her
“Yeah, hi, that would be me.”
Hugo stared at her. “You’re Scorpius’ sister? The Malfoy girl?”
“I wouldn’t be saying it otherwise, would I?”
Hugo turned to Lily
“Why’re you hanging round with her? She’s a Slytherin, Lil.”
Lily shrugged. “Not all Slytherins are bad. Albus is named after a Slytherin anyway.”
Hugo opened his mouth to retort, but was interrupted by the arrival of Professor McGonogall,
“First years this way please.”
They followed her through the large doors, into the great hall, through the path between the house tables. Violet saw Scorpius sat with the Slytherins. He gave her a small nod, before turning back to his friends. On the opposite side of the room was the Gryffindor table. Violet noticed James and Albus Potter straight away, sitting with a girl she suspected was Rose Weasley, Hugo’s sister. Rose waved at Hugo, who looked quickly away, his ears turning slightly red.
At the front of the room stood the sorting hat, placed on a rickety three legged stool. After McGonogal had called for silence, a rip appeared in place of a mouth, and the hat began it’s song.
A thousand years ago resided
Four wizards of great stature
Between each one they then decided,
Despite their different nature,
To start a school to educate
young wizards and witches
And so without much long debate
And rarely any hitches
They put together, and faced much doubt,
The final, finished plan
And set to tell the world about,
Thus Hogwarts school began.
Each founder felt they had the traits
most commonly desired
So each founded their own house,
which these features were required
For Gryffindor valued bravery
Above all other traits
And Hufflepuff did loyalty
And those with great restraint.
For slytherin the pure bloods were
Prized high above the rest
And Ravenclaw felt those with knowledge
Were better than the rest.
But after death, the founders faced
Much trial and trepidation
Once they were gone, would you be placed
Based on the true tradition?
It was Gryffindor who found me,
the average wizards hat
Put brains in me to sort you all
And that was the end of that.
The hall erupted into cheers and the hat bowed, it’s tip brushing the seat of the stool.
Proffessor McGonogal stood up and unrolled a piece of parchment.
A small, mop haired boy made his way to the front. The hat slipped right over his eyes, where it stayed, still and silent. And then
“RAVENCLAW!” The hat shouted, making Micheal Anderson jump right off the stool.
Next was “Azure. Blanche” Followed by “Brown. Amelia"
Violet waited nervously, as the group of first years lessened.
Before long they were on
“Langley. Thomas” and then “Malfoy. Violet”
As she stepped up, Violet noticed the Potter’s whispering to each other. She bit her lip and closed her eyes as the hat slipped on her head.
Interesting.” Said a small voice “How interesting. Another Malfoy, eh. But different. Yes. Very, very different. Your brother, father and grandfather, undoubtedly Slytherin. And their father’s before them. I don’t think I’ve ever sorted a Malfoy yet who wasn’t… but I know best. GRYFFINDOR!”
There was a small pause, followed by rather bemused applause. Stiff legged, Violet walked over to the Gryffindor table, her head bowed. She sat down next to Amelia who stared at her open mouthed, and watched fixedly as both Hugo and Lily were sorted into Gryffindor. When she sat down, Lily was beaming.
“I can’t believe it! You were up there for ages! I told you, Hugo, I told you!” Hugo was leaning over to talk to James and Albus.
“Ha! Knew you were lying! They never ran out of spaces in Gryffindor. And you said I’d be Hufflepuff!” He turned back to the girls
"Okay, I take back what I said. Friends?”
Violet nodded happily. Then Hugo sniggered.
“Did you see your brother’s face.
Shaking her head, Violet turned to look at the Slytherin table. Scorpius was staring at her, a strange expression on his face. When he saw her look over, he bared his teeth in a sinister smile. She shivered and turned quickly away, trying to focus only on the mounds of food that had appeared out of thin air. She managed to forget about it for the whole feast, and for the remainder of the evening. But as she settled down in her four poster bed in Gryffindor tower, she couldn’t help but despair, as the full force of the situation sank in