Chapter 1 : A Cyclone of Smoke
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Something stirred my consciousness and I became in limbo, fighting for sleep. A sharp hoot from my owl, Olive, fully roused me, and my eyes opened sleepily. Squinting I rolled over to face my window, which was practically glowing. Olive seemed to want to go out, so I wearily pulled off my covers and opened the window. She gave me a short hoot of thanks, jumped onto the window ledge, and flew out. Her wings beat, and soon, she was gone. I watched the sun rise, slowly awakening the small muggle town. My red hair kept flopping into my bright blue eyes, making the sun distorted between them and my hair even more vibrant. As I was about to toss my hair back behind my shoulders for the millionth time, a tsunami of wind rushed past, doing the job for me. It swirled, and closer I looked, the more horrified I became. A man was spinning inside the cage of slightly grey air, black robes billowing and twisting around him. I looked at his eyes, they had a horrible, dark glint to them and seemed likely to pierce anything they rested on for too long. I slammed the window shut and hurriedly rushed down the stairs, tripping over the last step and just caught myself, then my hair flying behind me I sprinted into the kitchen.
My mum had just pointed her wand at some eggs and muttered something under her breath, when I clumsily ran in. She turned, and smiled taking my fast and clumsy entrance as a form of excitement.
"I was upstairs and I saw this tunnel of grey wind, surrounding a man! I flew past my window.” I panted, drawing in a fast breath.
My mum stopped dead "What?!" she asked, fear and surprise given away by the frightened look in her eyes. A wave of panic crashed over me, she looked absolutely terrified.
"Have you packed your trunk?" she asked urgently
"Yeah." I said, trying to keep the waver out of voice.
"Good" she said "We need to go, if I'm not back in ten minutes have James send a Patronus to your father."
"Wait!" I said but the door had already slammed shut with a deafening crack.
I nervously watched my mum stride across the nearby field glancing back and forth as if she were a hunted animal. Quaking with fear, I climbed up the stairs. I needed someone to talk to. I tiptoed down the hallway feeling as if I made even the slightest noise, something awful would happen. I quietly knocked on Al’s bedroom door and heard a voice say "It's open!"
"Hey Al." I said, feeling a bit of my fear ebb away just because I wasn’t alone, left to my terrifying thoughts.
“Lily? Whats wrong?” he sounded sort of tired as he put a set of robes into his trunk.
"I... I’m... Scared.” I said lamely, not being able to put my feelings into words. He raised his eyebrows. I began to explain how I felt like somehow, everything was my fault and I just should’ve kept my mouth shut about seeing the man in the swirling cyclone of air. I felt good to get it all out in the open.
He stared at me for about five seconds after my flood of information, and when he finally spoke his voice was slightly hoarse. “We need to tell James.” He stood up and walked over to the door, opening it a little bit faster than necessary.
Picking up speed, we ran down the hall to James’ bedroom. I shouldered the door open and James looked up, hastily trying to stuff a tee shirt into his haphazard trunk. Al and I told him our problem, him pacing and I nervously opening and closing my heart shaped locket I always wore.
After hearing the entire story, James opened the door and practically ran out the door. "Come on, you two!" He said sounding almost nervous. James was never nervous! On the contrary, he always exuded a defiant air of confidence! All of this raced through my mind as Al and I jogged to keep up with his brisk pace. We trotted down the stairs and slid into the kitchen.
"Everyone got a wand?" he said, his eyes lingering on me.
"I have mine, but its useless..." I muttered looking at the floor.
Al wrapped his arm around me, "Don't worry Lils, I've got your back."
"Thanks..." I said, having a horrible feeling I was just a another problem.
James instituted a watch, taking the first shift while Al continued packing his trunk, but this time downstairs. The whole atmosphere in the room was gloomy.
"Lily, your watch." said James. I proceeded to walk slowly to the kitchen window, the sunlight and cloudless sky seemed so... inappropriate, my mum was out there, possibly dead! Minutes passed, but none of us seemed to want to give up and contact dad, that would mean giving up the thought that mum was... ok. I felt like it was all my fault and hot tears began to run down my face. The air was filled with hope, squashed down by fear. When she came in to view, I felt like the small bit of my stomach that had left me in my sudden guilt returned to me with a thump.
"Hi sweetheart!" said mum, taking me into a tight embrace
"Mum!" I whispered, burying my head in her hair.
"Is everything ok?" my mum said, a slight nervous lift in her voice.
"If you mean like James and Al, then yes, there fine." I said
My mum kissed me on top of the head, then stood up to watch James and Al sprint across the field to us. When they arrived Al welcomed mum's hug, but James tried to back out of it, but finally allowed himself to be squished.
When we had all calmed ourselves mum brushed her hands off on her jeans and stood, saying "Lets go, we have a train to catch." We all trooped back home, and proceeded to lug our trunks down the stairs, and into the car.