Instantly a triple-decker purple bus appeared right in front of me. Cool, I thought. I was finally home in the presence of something so magical. I felt myself slowly slipping back into the girl I was before the orphanage turned me into a shy, weak little girl.
All my life I lived somewhere between a witch and a muggle. I know some witches and wizards my age that don’t even know how to use a telephone or a microwave. My mom on the other hand thought it was important for me to grow up without magic so that I never took it for granted and so that I will always know how to survive without it. Just like I did this past year.
A young man, probably around twenty-something, opened the door and jumped down the steps so that he was standing right in front of me.
“Hello miss!” He said very cheerfully, “Running away from home are we?”
“I…I no” I sputtered out stupidly.
“Relax pip-squeak, I’m only joking. I’m Bernie the conductor of the Knight Bus, our driver tonight is my uncle Ernie. I know he looks about a hundred, but make sure you compliment him and he’s less likely to kill us all.”
“I heard that you ungrateful git!” A voice rang out in the darkness, I assumed it was Ernie.
“Well come on in then,” Bernie motioned with one arm for me to climb up the steps and into the bus, “No baggage?”
I didn’t even answer him because I had never seen anything like this before. There were beds lined against all the walls, there was no order to them. Just chaos. There were a few arm chairs and couches and, most impressively, these two great chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.
I walked up to the driver Ernie who was wrinkled and very old looking, “Hello Ernie, I’m Jackie. May I just say you don’t look a day over ninety.” I couldn’t even say it with a straight face; I giggled and looked at Bernie for approval. He shot me a thumbs up.
“Oh great,” Ernie said, but I noticed even he was smiling, “we have a wise-ass on board.”
I heard some other laughs join the mix and I turned around to see a young couple sitting on a loveseat together. I bowed to them hamming it up a bit and they laughed even louder. I smiled again and turned back to Bernie.
“Where you headed pip-squeak?”
“I can’t remember what the town is called exactly, but I really need to buy my school supplies. I’m starting my first year at Hogwarts in a couple weeks.”
“Sounds like she needs to go to Diagon Alley” The young man that laughed at my joke earlier came up to us and joined in the conversation.
“Yes that’s what it was called!” I exclaimed remembering now, “I’m Jackie” I said to him shaking his hand. It was funny to see the contrasting sizes; his was big enough for two of mine to fit into. Looking him over, I noticed that he was young, probably nineteen, and that he seemed nice enough even though he looked a little bit…wolfish. He also had bright blue hair which I thought was a little different even in the wizarding world.
“Teddy” He replied with a smile.
“Pip-squeak, the fare is eleven sickles. For two more you can get a cup of hot cocoa, for four more a hot water bottle and a toothbrush in a color of your choice, eh? Eh? It’s a steal.”
“No thanks,” I said even though the hot chocolate sounded great, “I haven’t enough money…will you guys accept muggle currency?”
Bernie looked like he wasn’t sure what to say about that. He looked to Ernie to see what he thought. “I’ll trade you Jackie,” Teddy interrupted, “I’ve got a good friend who just loves muggle stuff. He’ll be fascinated by the money.”
“Thank you,” I said fervently, digging out my blue bag, “Just take what I have; I’m sure it won’t be of use to me anymore.”
Bernie looked relieved as Teddy handed him the eleven sickles. “Settle in everyone!” he yelled, “It’s going to be a bumpy ride!”
He was right about that.
I had followed Teddy, at his request, to sit with him and the girl I saw him with earlier. I had barely sat down across from them when the bus lurched forward at a really fast pace. I simply flew out of my seat and toppled into Teddy’s lap.
“Oh my gosh, I’m sorry” I said quickly as he lifted me off of him. He assured me not to worry and instead of letting me go back to my seat he just tucked me under his arm. It was a sight to see; on one side he had a hold of me and on the other he had his arm around the girl he was obviously dating.
I felt surprisingly comfortable there with my new friend. He reminded me a little bit of what a grown up Milo would be like. Me, Teddy, and his girlfriend (Victoire was her name and she was extremely beautiful) chatted for a while.
They wanted to know what I was doing riding the Knight Bus at three in the morning- I told them I was meeting some people in Diagon Alley in the morning and I wanted to get there early to surprise them. They wanted to know if my parents knew I was here- I lied and told them they did. I wanted to know where they were going- apparently she was going into her seventh year at Hogwarts (!!!) and they wanted to go away for a weekend before she had to leave.
I thought it was so scandalous that they were spending a whole weekend together. They laughed and called me innocent. I don’t get the joke but oh well.
At some point I fell asleep on Teddy’s shoulder. I didn’t know when because it felt like no time had passed when he woke me up and told me they were getting off. I was sad to see them leave, but at least I knew I might see Victoire at school. I wished Teddy were starting his seventh year as well.
I didn’t want to sit by myself so I got up to go hang out by Bernie. This was a mistake because the bus took a sudden right turn. My bruised ribs found out just how hard a bed frame is. I fought the urge to cry. Instead I slowly made my way over to where Bernie sat in the front.
“How many more stops before Diagon Alley?”
“For the love of Merlin.” Said Ernie, “this is why we don’t like kid passengers. She may as well be shouting ‘Are we there yet? Are we there yet?’ in my ear.”
“Ignore the crotchety old man pip-squeak,” Bernie said to me in a loud whisper so Ernie could hear, “we just have to drop off old Mrs. Nelson at Knockturn Alley and then your up.”
At that moment we made another sharp turn. This time I was ready. I just barely grabbed onto one of the beds before falling. I considered it a great accomplishment.
Fifteen minutes later after getting my first glimpse of Knockturn Alley we had arrived. I ran down the steps, waved a cheery goodbye to my two new friends, and set off down the cobblestone road.
There were shops lining the street, all the stores were dark because it was so early and I couldn’t wait to see it in the day time. After walking aimlessly for a little bit I came across a store that was bright even at this hour. It was huge and colorful and absolutely perfect! I looked at the store name: Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. It didn’t just look amazing and fun, it looked safe. I settled down underneath one of the windows and fell right asleep on the cold hard floor.
A/N: I know this is a short chapter but don’t worry more is on its way. I have a tendency to start loads of projects and never finish them so please, please review if you want me to continue this story. Let me know what you’re thinking! Also there seems to be huge spaces in between my paragraphs, does anybody know how to avoid this?