Chapter 1 : Everything's Not Lost
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- September 1st, 2017
It was nearly time to leave for Hogwarts, yet I continued to cling to my mum. It would be four months until I saw her next and as an eleven year old girl who had never been apart from her mum for that length of time, leaving for the train seemed like an undesirable option.
“Mira, it’s almost 11 o’clock; I know you don’t want to leave yet, I don’t want you to go either, but I promise you will love Hogwarts! It’s a great school with some wonderful people; just give it a chance, for me?” she looked down at me as my arms stayed wrapped around her waist. “Okay, I’ll tell you what, you get on the train and the second I get home, I’ll start writing you a letter so you’ll get a letter tomorrow at breakfast; sound like a plan?” my mum has always been a good bargainer and to me, this was a great deal.
Once on the train, I was overwhelmed with the amount of people rushing past to find empty compartments, to sit with friends, and to be seated before the train lurched forward headed in its destination. With my head down, trunk and owl Buttercup behind me, I found a compartment and let out a grateful sigh, I had made it on the train without much damage to myself or others.
My thoughts of the future were interrupted by a male voice, “Hey, are you saving this for anyone? If not, we need a compartment.” I looked up and saw a boy with raven hair and green eyes, another who looked like the boy yet younger, and a girl with fiery red, bushy hair, all of whom looked very familiar, though at the time I couldn’t quite place my finger on it. “Hello? Anyone in there?” the male voice called again.
“Oh, sorry, no, you all can sit.” My voice was quiet and rushed, I didn’t quite meet their eyes, and they all held an air of self confidence, as if they all knew exactly who they were.
“I’m James,” the owner of the male voice said after they had all settled in, “I’m a second year, this is Albus,” he said pointing to the younger boy next to him, “and that’s Rose, they’re both first years.” It hit me then, they were part of the Potter/Weasley clan. Their father, and in Rose’s case, uncle, was Harry Potter, the hero of the Second Wizarding War, defeater of Voldemort, and all around good person.
“I’m Mira, Mira Holland; it’s my first year too.”
Rose looked at me and became animated, “It’s so nice to meet you! What house do you want to be in? I want Gryffindor, or at least that’s what my dad says I should be in, but I know he’s joking, I do suppose Ravenclaw is another good house, just as long as I’m not in Slytherin, that just sounds unappealing in every way.” She seemed to have trouble not talking. I almost didn’t think I was going to get a word in but she stopped talking and looked at me expectantly.
I tripped over my words a little; I had never given it much thought. “Oh, I don’t know, I don’t have a preference. My mum and dad, they didn’t really instill a large amount of house pride on me.”
“What house or houses were your parents in?” James asked.
“My mum was a Slytherin and my dad was a Ravenclaw, but neither really felt a deep connection to their house. To be honest, I’ll probably just end up in Hufflepuff, everyone is always telling my mum and me that I’m just so nice and fair, I’m a shoe in for Hufflepuff.” I shrugged, feeling a little more comfortable with my new schoolmates.
“I hope we’re in the same house, I’d love to know you better!” Rose exclaimed, looking at me like she’d just found her new best friend; I wasn’t about to argue with her, I was never great at making friends, being so quiet and all.
“Yeah, I’d like to know you better too Rose,” a small smile appearing on my lips.
We both looked away from each other and a silence fell in the compartment until James asked, “Do you play quidditch?”
His face was serious; his eyes bore into mine, as if he was asking the world’s most important question that required a very serious answer. “Yeah, I have, my dad played on the Ravenclaw team, so he taught me when I was younger.”
“Um, seeker mostly, that’s what my dad’s position was.”
James looked at me with a judgmental eye and arrogantly proclaimed, “I play both seeker and chaser, like my mum and dad.”
“Well, that’s nice, good luck at tryouts then,” I gave a half smile, his intense attitude toward the game making me uncomfortable.
“Albus, you haven’t said anything to Mira yet! That’s rude!” Rose admonished him in a motherly way, as if she was the boss.
“I didn’t have anything to say Rose! Not all of us feel the need to talk continually.” I chuckled at their exchange; if I didn’t know any better, I would have thought they were brother and sister. Albus looked over at me, “Hi, I’m Albus, pleasure to meet you.” I laughed lightly and shook his hand.
“I’m Mira, and likewise.” Our pleasant exchange was cut short by the sound of the compartment door being thrown open by a boy who looked about James’ age but had a darker complexion and hair.
“James! Come quick, a load of dung bombs just went off in Dom and Roxy’s compartment!”
“YES! IT WORKED!” James jumped up, threw his fist into the air in triumph, and then ran out of the compartment, just behind the other boy. Albus and Rose rolled their eyes in dismay; I got the feeling this wasn’t an unusual occurrence.
“Who was that?” I asked after a few seconds of silence.
Rose sighed heavily and answered, “Our cousin Freddie, torturing our cousins Roxanne and Dominique. It happens far more than necessary in my opinion.”
“You just hate when anyone breaks the rules like your mum,” Albus shot back in a joking manner.
“But I’ll be Keeper on the quidditch team like my dad, I’ll bet my life on it!”
I made an audible gasp when sitting on the boat, the enormous castle getting closer, and the bright lights glowing in the dark night. Rose grasped my arm and shook it excitedly, squealing, “We’re here Mira! Can you believe it? I’m so excited!” I looked over at her and Albus and smiled, thinking, ‘I’m pretty excited too.’
We got off the boats and followed the booming voice of who Rose and Albus described as Hagrid, the half giant/wizard. He seemed lovely, a little unkempt, but lovely nonetheless. Hagrid led the first years up to the castle as we got ready for our sorting. I felt a wave of nervousness as I stood with my new friends; I didn’t realize it then, but looking back on my life, my sorting changed my life. I was distracted from my reverie by Rose introducing me to someone the Weasley/Potters knew well.
“Mira, this is Remus Longbottom, but you can call him Remy. Remy, this is Mira Holland.” The young boy was cute, in an adorable kind of way. He had sandy blonde hair and brown eyes, he was tall and skinny.
Remus’ hand stuck out, waiting to be shook. “Hi Mira, it’s nice to meet you.”
I smiled and shook his hand. “It’s nice to meet you too. Are you Professor Longbottom’s son?”
“I get the feeling I’ll be asked that a lot, but yeah-,” he was cut off by none other than his father, Professor Longbottom.
“Alright first years, welcome to Hogwarts! I’m Professor Longbottom; the sorting is about to start. For those of you who don’t know, there are four houses, Gryffindor, I’m the head of that house, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin. The Sorting Hat will decide your house. Now, follow me into the Great Hall and it’ll get started. All of your stuff will be in your dormitories by the time you get up there tonight, so no worries.” He gestured all of us forward and the giant doors swung open and I could easily see why it would be named the Great Hall, it was, in a word, great.
Clustered altogether, the nervous first years we were, the sorting began. Professor Longbottom rolled a scroll with all of our names and the dingy hat sitting on the stool awoke as it chose the fates of mere eleven year olds.
“Holland, Mira!” I almost didn't hear my name but I felt Rose give me a reassuring nudge forward. I walked toward the stool and promptly sat down. My heart pulsed loudly at obnoxious decibels; I swear to this day people sitting in the back of the Hall could hear it.
‘Well, what do we have here? Smart, witty, much like your parents, and a kind, mild tempered head, maybe Hufflepuff then,’
‘Wow, big surprise,’ I couldn’t help but think.
‘But wait, I see an adventurous and brave side, yes, courage lies deep. I guess that decides it then, only one place for you!’
The hat boomed, “GRYFFINDOR!”
I didn't really see that coming.
Well, that's the first chapter! It'll pick up in Mira's sixth year in the next installment. I hope you enjoyed reading it! (By the way, the chapter title is from a song by Coldplay.)
Disclaimer: I for sure do not own Harry Potter. I'm going to leave that to good old JK.