Hello there! Here is another update! I hope you like this! Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.
I do not own Harry Potter. All rights go to J.K. Rowling. =))'
Chapter 4: Not Slytherin!
A little too soon for my taste, the Hogwarts Express arrived at the Hogsmead station. Neville and I left our trunks on the train, and followed the throng of the students coming off it. A large booming voice silenced most of the kids around us. "Firs' years! Firs' years over here!" Neville turned around; I was still looking at everything in awe—and emitted something between a shriek and a gasp. I turned around too, and found myself smiling. I was about to greet Hagrid, the gamekeeper of Hogwarts when he shined the lamp towards a student near him. "Hiya, 'Arry."
"Hello, Hagrid." The giant man smiled, and then turned to the kids staring wide eyed at him. "Follow me an' we'll go ter the boa's!" I raised an eyebrow when Hagrid caught sight of me. He winked. I shook Neville—whose jaws where attracting big flies—and followed the other first year students. Hagrid led us to a lake, I think it was, but it looked black in the night. "'kay, only four ter the boats! We don' wan' anyone sinkin'!" Students lined up, but Neville was quite slow on the uptake, so we found ourselves to the end of the line.
We ended up on a boat with Harry Potter and Ron Weasley. What bad luck do I have? While we sailed in the black body of water, I noticed Harry looking at me. I have the worst luck in the world.
My grip on the side of the boat tightened. He won't recognize me. He shouldn't, wouldn't, couldn't. Right? I looked at him. "Yes? Do you have any problem? You know, you should look at our surroundings, I heard Hagrid say that we'll be able to view Hogwarts any second now. I read—"At that point Hagrid said exactly that we will see Hogwarts any second. Thankfully Harry stopped staring at me. I also noticed Neville smiling smugly, though. I glared at him and turned my attention to the now visible castle. And then gasped.
Seeing Hogwarts was just… surreal. It was a very beautiful castle, with all the towers and everything. At some point Hagrid yelled "Duck!" and I did, but Neville kind of forgot and I had to pull him down so forcefully he knocked into Ron. Ron didn't appreciate it much. After that we ended up in some sort of underground dock. Hagrid led us through the grounds—after he found and returned Trevor to Neville—, when we reached the front door. It was beautiful, like the varnished wood of an oak tree. Hagrid looked back at us, and then knocked three times on it.
A woman with emerald green robes, spectacles, tight bun, and stern expression opened the door, and Hagrid left us. My face must have shown a smile, because Neville nudged me. "What are you smiling about?" I grinned at him. "That's Professor McGonagall. She's the one who I li—err; she escorted me around Diagon Alley." I glanced sideways at Neville. He didn't seem to notice my slip up. I let out a sigh. Professor McGonagall herded us inside Hogwarts, where we found a grand staircase—"Wow!"—and the great hall doors. Before we could go in, though, she led us to a small door near the hall doors. Inside, her stern expression quieted the students. "I am to be addressed as Professor McGonagall. Welcome to Hogwarts. While in this school, you will be sorted into houses. There are—"
"Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin" I whispered to Neville, in perfect unison with Professor McGonagall.
"—your triumphs will earn you house points. Any rule breaking and you will lose points. House with most points at the end of the year wins the house cup, a great honour. Now wait here while we get ready for you." She left. As soon as she did, a lot of murmurs erupted. Neville and I heard Ron Weasley exclaim "Fred told me we had to fight a troll!" I snickered. Neville looked at me, as well as Ron Weasley, and of course, Harry. I found myself gripping my skirt a little too tight. "What? I mean, isn't it ridiculous that they'll have us fight a troll when some, if not most didn't even know magic existed? Use your brains. They'll sort us according to the characteristics prized by the founders of the four houses. Brave for the Gryffindor, Loyal for Hufflepuff, Wise for Ravenclaw and cunning for Slytherin." Many students quieted down as soon as I finished. A drawling voice said behind me. "See? Proves you don't use your brain, Weasley." Harry and Ron—who looked at me annoyingly—frowned behind me, and I'm sure Draco Malfoy is behind me right now. Oh Merlin, kill me. I tugged at Neville and led him towards the front. I wonder if my good luck is existent. "If they don't quiet down, I'll use a tickling hex at them." He looked at me in awe. "You know how to do that?" I blushed. "I bought the spell books for grade1, 2 and 3 charms." Before he could do something, like yell on how ridiculously nerdy I am—or at least I think he will—a scream froze all my blood. Several screams were also heard, when I realized what was the cause. Ghosts. They appeared to be talking about something, and then I noticed one of the ghosts dropped something solid. I picked it up, and saw a name embroideredin the cloth. Helena Ravenclaw, I read wide eyed. I chased after her, and she gasped when she saw me holding her handkerchief. "Excuse me, you dropped this." I stepped closer to her, and I felt impossibly cold as her misty hand touched mine. "You're Rowena's daughter?" I whispered. She smiled, and then told me: "I can see that you already know me. Or is Ravenclaw too much of a give away?" I grinned back. "Actually, I've read about you once or twice." She smiled kindly and floated away, just as McGonagall entered. She gave me a pointed look, and I smiled. "We're ready for you now." The students lined up by two's and I found myself beside a girl who has auburn hair tied into a plait.
The moment when we entered the great hall, my eyes widened at the ceiling. Is that… Then I remembered something I read in Hogwarts: A history. I murmured to the girl beside me, "It's just enchanted to look like the night sky. I've read about it in Hogwarts: A history. She smiled at me, and I offered a small smile in return. It's hard to socialize with people when you spent most of your childhood running away from them. After what seemed like forever in the midst of floating candles, the enchanted ceiling and students gazing at us, we arrived in the very front of the hall. Professor McGonagall had us gather around the platform, where an old battered wizard's hat and stool stood. I knew exactly what it was.
Just then, a slit opened and widened near the brim of the hat and it started to sing.
Oh you may not think I'm pretty, You can keep your bowlers black, There's nothing hidden in your head You might belong in Gryffindor, You might belong in Hufflepuff, Or yet in wise old Ravenclaw, Or perhaps in Slytherin So put me on! Don't be afraid!
But don't judge on what you see,
I'll eat myself if you can find
A smarter hat than me.
Your top hats sleek and tall,
For I'm the Hogwarts Sorting Hat
And I can cap them all.
The Sorting Hat can't see,
So try me on and I will tell you
Where you ought to be.
Where dwell the brave at heart,
Their daring, nerve, and chivalry
Set Gryffindors apart;
Where they are just and loyal,
Those patient Hufflepuffs are true
And unafraid of toil;
if you've a ready mind,
Where those of wit and learning,
Will always find their kind;
You'll make your real friends,
Those cunning folks use any means
To achieve their ends.
And don't get in a flap!
You're in safe hands (though I have none)
For I'm a Thinking Cap!
You can keep your bowlers black,
There's nothing hidden in your head
You might belong in Gryffindor,
You might belong in Hufflepuff,
Or yet in wise old Ravenclaw,
Or perhaps in Slytherin
So put me on! Don't be afraid!
Many students applauded after its song, while I realized that Ron was in front of me, murmuring to Harry. "I swear, that girl's completely mental. How'd she know how we'll be sorted?" I frowned, a little hurt. Was it wrong to point out that there's nothing to be afraid of being sorted? Ron said something about all Slytherins going bad and the nastiest of houses but I was too busy sulking about his earlier statement and to notice the names Professor McGonagall was calling, when Neville nudged me. "Hermione Granger!" Professor McGonagall calls my name for the second time. I almost ran next to her in embarrassment, my ears are probably glowing red. She put the hat on my head, covering my eyes. I heard a gruff yet melodic voice saying:
Hmmm… Difficult, Brilliantly tricky. A sound mind, Ravenclaw is a good place for you... Lots of wit, but with a touch of cunning. Loyal. And a huge amount of bravery and chivalry. Gryffindor? You're not somebody anyone to fool with, Ms. Granger. A dark past, as well as ancestry… The hunger to fulfil your dreams and to prove your worth... The thirst to proclaim that nothing can stop you from your goals. You would do well in Slytherin…
I was panicking, and my hands were almost probably breaking the stool because of my tight hold. "Please. Not Slytherin. I would accept any house, just not that! Not Slytherin!" I screamed mentally. Please…. Not that house…
Well, if you insist. But I assure you, Slytherin will pave your way to greatness!
"No… not Slytherin."
Well then. Better be… "GRYFFINDOR!" The hat exclaimed loudly. I almost collapsed on the stool in relief. Good thing I wasn't put in Slytherin. If I was… I risked a glance at the Slytherin table as I went towards the cheering Gryffindor table. Slytherin table was the most sinister looking, and they simply radiated evil. I had to suppress a huge shudder.
Ron was telling me that every Slytherin turned bad when Hermione Granger was called. Nobody reacted, and I didn't see the bushy haired girl anywhere. Professor McGonagall calls her again, and I notice Dumbledore fix his eyes somewhere behind me. Hermione Granger almost runs forward, bumping Ron and me—in excitement, I think—and Professor McGonagall drops the hat until we can only see her lower face. I think the sorting hat will place her directly in Ravenclaw, because she seems to be the witty type.
Murmurs started to erupt around me when the sorting hat was still on her head five minutes later. I was a little to the side, so I was the only one who notice that she suddenly gripped the stool tightly. She was mouthing something softly, and I tried to decipher it.
"No… not Slytherin." WHAT? The hat's placing her on Slytherin? I leaned forward ever so slightly, anticipating the hat's proclamation. Then suddenly her hand relaxed. It wasn't until I heard the cheers in the Gryffindor table did I realize that she was placed in that table. Ron face palmed his forehead beside me. "I'm doomed." I grinned at his crestfallen expression. The sorting continued, though none stayed there for so long like Hermione Granger. Odd. I was called, and placed at Gryffindor. Neville Longbottom and Ron were there with me. Draco Malfoy got what he wanted and was placed in Slytherin. Dumbledore said something that was completely not making sense, but I was busy whispering something to Hermione Granger, who sat beside me—though she stayed as far to me as possible.
"Slytherin?" She started and gave a small squeak. "What are you talking about? I don't know whatever you're saying, but you might realize that I want to actually listen to whatever Dumbledore is saying. Besides, why are you associating me to Slyther—err." I smirked, catching her slip up. "I lip-read whatever you said a while ago when you were being sorted. You said 'not Slytherin.' Did the hat want to place you in—"
"Look. I just told the hat to put me anywhere but in Slytherin because that's where Malfoy is exactly going to go to. Now please pay attention to Dumbledore and mind your own business." She hissed. I almost turned my back on her in annoyance, and soon the table was filled with a huge amount of food that I completely forgot about her.
I didn't even notice the teachers all looking at her as Professor Dumbledore seem to talk with the Sorting hat.
How'd you like it? Was it good? Please review. On next chapter, Hermione can't understand why Harry is so deiffferent from the old Harry she knew, and somebody might just save Neville as he falls on his broom! Stay tuned!