Scorpius did not leave Rose alone there. Hagrid, the half-giant professor, was in charge of getting first-years across the lake and into the castle to be sorted. Rose boarded a boat with Albus and Fred, but before they could take off, Scorpius jumped in. He smirked at Rose and settled in for the ride.
“Father says that the giant squid likes to pull people out of their boats. Better watch out Weasley,” Scorpius drawled. Fred scowled at him. Rose touched Fred’s arm and he looked away.
“What do you want Scopius? Haven’t you said enough?” Albus demanded. Rose had told James and Albus about the story he’d come up with.
“I haven’t said enough unless she’s going to question her parents. I want her to know exactly what family she belongs to and what kind of an outsider it makes her,” Scorpius spat.
“Why do you want me to be an outsider? I’ll belong to this family no matter what,” Rose replied.
“It doesn’t matter if they accept you. It matters that you won’t belong!” Scorpius snapped. He rolled his eyes and refused to talk the rest of the way to the school. Rose ignored him and wouldn’t look Al in the eyes.
In the castle, the sorting ceremony began. The sorting hat was escorted into the hall by Professor McGonagall herself, and it sang it’s newest and shortest ever song:
Hogwarts welcomes new students
Each and every year
The four houses stand proud
United without tears.
You may belong in Gryfindor
Where pure of heart stand true
Perhaps in grand ol’ Hufflepuff
Where finders there aren’t few
In Ravenclaw the bright do learn
With many a neat trick
And Slytherin stands tall and proud
With lots of pluck and wit.
Courage is of no shortage here
And love is never far
Hogwarts walls stand strong and true
For here we always are.
When Albus was called to be sorted, the entire hall was silent. The hat sat on his head for a long time before calling out a house, and the response from the crowd was immediate. “GRYFFINDOR!” The hall erupted in cheers. The rest of the sorting went as expected. Every Weasley since the infamous twins had been placed in Gryffindor, and it was no different this year. Finally, Rose was called to put on the hat.
“You aren’t a typical Weasley. Did I hear your name correctly? You are a Weasley, correct? Well, you lack what most Gryffindors have… I’ve a mind to put you in Ravenclaw. But in your heart… You have the makings of a Slytherin. This is most unusual. However, your name speaks of itself. GRYFFINDOR!” the hat told her. Rose sat completely still in shock for an extra few seconds before moving to sit between Fred and Al. Scorpius met her gaze across the hall with a smirk as if to say, ‘I told you so.’
That night, when everyone had settled in and was unpacked, Rose met Al and Fred down in the common room. They were going to go over schedules together to determine when to eat and what to do during free periods.
“I think we should stay outside as long as we can. Rose, you and I have to try for the team! And Al already has a spot. Hannah drafted him the moment he sat down! He’s going to be a chaser! James already has the seeker position. Your dad’ll be so proud, Al!” Fred exclaimed.
“Did you forget that I’m expected to get straight O’s this year? And every year? My mother was the top of her class, and she expects me to be the same. Dad says I’ll be lucky to beat you though, Al. You’ve always been a more avid reader than me,” Rose replied.
“I’m going to be involved in so much just because of my family. You can have top of the class. I’ve got the rest covered. We can just switch places every once in a while. Polyjuice potion, remember?” Al joked.
“Don’t joke about that, bro. That stuff is disgusting. Teddy and I traded places with that once. It was awful, and the change bloody hurts. I don’t think I’ll ever be doing it again. And Teddy didn’t even get me the O he was supposed to be going for,” James laughed. Teddy slapped his arm playfully.
“I can’t help it that Victoire distracted me! She was so onto us the whole time. I’m still hearing about that from your dad, too. You didn’t even get in trouble!” Teddy complained.
“Yeah, because I kept my end of the bargain,” James teased.
Rose pulled out parchment and a quill. She hadn’t been able to stop thinking about what the sorting hat had said. “Are you sure you’re a Weasley?” She was sure, right? So why was it bothering her? She drafted a letter to her mother.
I keep hearing strange things about my lineage. I am a Weasley, aren’t I? I wouldn’t ask, but first Scorpius Malfoy told me I wasn’t, and then the sorting hat questioned it. Scorpius says I’m a Malfoy, but I hardly believe that after everything I’ve been told about them. I just want to make sure I’m not going crazy. Sorry if I’ve worried you,
She sent the letter with her owl, Artemis. She watched Art fly away with her letter and sighed. It would be a day or so before she heard anything, but at least she would know for sure. As a final precaution, she wrote one last letter.
My name is Rose Weasley. I wouldn’t be writing if it weren’t important to me, as I know the history of our families. Your son told me that I’m not a Weasley but a Malfoy. I find it strange that a Malfoy would claim a Weasley as a family member, and I’m trying to figure out if it’s true or not. I assume I am not your daughter, but I’d like to hear it from you. Sorry to bother you.
Rose borrowed Fred’s owl, as Albus’s would be recognized immediatly by the teachers. She sent the letter out and sat by the window to wait for an answer to her letters. She wondered briefly who would respond first, and decided it would be Malfoy, rushing to laugh at her for her stupidity.