Velia gazed in awe at the magnificent building looming over her. She stepped up the large stone steps along with her friends Layla and Ana, and the other sixth years. The castle’s appearance still didn’t fail to amaze her; the gianormous turrets and the huge stained glass windows lit from the inside by the glowing candles floating in mid air. The whole castle seemed to give off a warmth and she just wanted to be inside, making spells, curling up by the common room fire and eating exquisite meals in the grand hall.
The procession of Hogwarts students rushing up the steps was quickly filtering through the enormous oak doors leading to the entrance hall. Velia got hurried along by the movement of the crowd and soon found herself in the middle of the hall surrounded by the warmth and familiar smells of her school.
She was back, she had to keep telling herself. She was really back, where she belonged. She always felt so special to come to this school and be a part of the magical atmosphere. Unlike most common school kids, she loved her school.
The tide of black robed children flooded into the great hall which lead off to the right through another pair of wooden doors. Velia journeyed over to the Hufflepuff table with her friends, passing the Slytherin and Ravenclaw tables where many pupils had already sat down on the long wooden benches.
She looked up at the ceiling and saw the stunning expanse of dark velvety blue, studded with shining white dots and swirling colours. It was bewitched to show the stars and the universe above them at that moment. Velia had heard that it used to mirror what the sky was like, but that when the great hall was half destroyed in the battle of Hogwarts, the repairs included a new enchantment. She thought this was much prettier, as on some occasions when the sky is a plain grey you want to see some colours to brighten the mood.
As she reached her house table she saw Tally and Chloe, her other friends who were sitting and chatting about who knows what.
“Hi” she said in greeting and the girls turned their heads.
“Oh Velia! Hi” Chloe said moving up a bit on the bench. Velia squeezed herself in the gap and all the friends immediately started to catch up on everything, from holidays, to new haircuts. Velia felt accepted and enjoyed sitting and talking, so when a bell sounded for the students to be quiet she resented it. That was until silence fell and the familiar authoritative figure stood up.
The impressive way their headteacher stood above them gave off a powerful feeling that you where safe and that all was well. She was frail in her old age but still remained strong. It was said that many years ago she had survived four stunning spells at the same time.
Professor McGonagall gave them all a stern look, so that the odd person who was still twittering away fell quiet, and she began to speak.
“welcome back to Hogwarts. I’m sure you all had a pleasant journey, but now let’s begin with the sorting of the new students into their respective houses.” She then paused and Velia felt the normal tension reverberate through the hall at the prospect of new members sitting at the tables.
“well, we will when professor Flitwick arrives with them.” McGonagall stated a little impatiently but with her usual air of humor. The whispers started rushing round the hall making it sound like a hive full of buzzing bees. Professor Hagrid, the enormous half giant game keeper, slipped into the hall, evidently having just brought the first years by boat across the lake. He whispered to McGonagall, which, because of the giant blood in him, meant that everyone could hear him. Velia heard “He’s just had to calm ’em all down. Peeves ‘as learnt to be invisible. They’ll be ‘ere soon.”
Velia started to giggle. Peeves the resident poltergeist has always found new ways of making trouble, and becoming invisible while terrorising the students would look like a bonus to him. Unfortunately it probably wouldn’t be to anyone at the receiving end of the practical jokes, thought Velia as the wooden doors opened once more to reveal a group of shivering first years.
Professor flitwick, the ancient , small charms teacher with goblin ancestory, headed the petrified group and was carrying a wooden stool and a bedraggled hat. Velia was always shocked by the hats condition, and wondered again why it wasn’t replaced, but she knew that it was a school heirloom and very important to its history. The teacher placed the stool at the front of the hall and rested the hat on it.
“We shall now have the sorting.” McGonagall spoke and sat again at the large golden throne that has seated so many other powerful wizards previously.
All eyes in the room lay on the tattered old hat. Any unknowing muggle would see this and think what a peculiar sight it was. But all here knew what was about to happen and were waiting in anticipation.
* * *
To go to the start follow: Velia Sampson and the silver rings,
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Illustrations copyright the flower child named Jasmine
I don’t own any of the places, names or ideas used in this text that are original to The Harry Potter series, they were written by JK Rowling. This is my own work of fiction based upon them, so please don’t copy this text or claim it as your own.
Hope you enjoyed this next installment of Velia’s journey at Hogwarts. Wait and see what the next chapter is to find out what the sorting hat will sing,