Something That Resembles a Lecture on the American Schools of Magic

Albus had done everything that he could to get out of History of Magic, but his girlfriend, Ashley Wright, was having none of it.

"Ash, I need to practice my charms spell, we have a test on that tomorrow. Besides, today's lecture is on American schools, what could I possibly learn from Professor Binns that I don't already know? He wasn't even alive when America was invented!"

"And what if this is on the test?" Ashley retorted.

"I'll copy off you," Albus said.

"Uh, ha, ha, ha. Not if I have anything to say about it!" Ashley said.

Albus grabbed her hands and turned her to face him. "Please," he said, "I can't take old floating textbook today. Please!"

"Absolutely out of the question," Ashley said.

"Give it up, Al," Rose Weasley said, coming up to join the couple. "Girls always win. What's the fight about today?"

"It's not a fight," Albus said.

"Al is trying to play hooky," Ashley said.

"From what?" Rose asked.

"History of Magic," Albus said.

Rose made a face. "Oh, I pity you Al, History of Magic on a beautiful day like today."

"Rose, you have History of Magic now too," Ashley said.

"Do I?" Rose said in a much higher than normal voice. "Oh, that's a shame."

"Alright, come on, let's get this over with," Albus finally said and the three of them made their way into the classroom and sat in the back row.

Professor Binns floated through the blackboard right as the bell tower rang three in the afternoon. "Today we will be discussing the history of the American schools of magic. Now, in 1587, a group of witches and wizards escaped aboard a vessel which was bound for the New World. Now as you know, at that time it was dangerous to leave any clue that you were a witch or wizard, so they hired a muggle named John White to lead the voyage. Once there, they founded a colony and sent the muggle back with word to the King. As soon as he had left, they abandoned the colony and set off to form their own magical community in the north. As they were traveling..."

"Ugh, this is boring," Albus said.

"You haven't even taken your parchment out!" Ashley said. "Take notes or you're not using mine."

"Why, you always take much better notes than I do!" Albus said.

They began to playfully fight over Ashley's notes, but before they were noticed, Rose turned a nasty shade of green and puked all over their desk, making Ashley's notes far less desirable.

"Sorry, gotta go," Rose motioned as she bolted for the door.

"Figures that she'd find a way out," Albus said as he magically cleaned up the mess.

"...they found a beautiful spot on the mouth of the Naumkeag River and built a castle just like Hogwarts there to teach the locals civilized magic. The locals however did not agree with their definition of civilized magic and organized a massive attack on the school. Many students were wounded, but few killed, in the attack, but they were forced to abandon the school which was promptly destroyed by the local people. But the wizards would not be deterred. They returned to the spot and built a massive fortress designed after a medieval muggle castle, complete with a moat and several defensive traps. The natives tried three more times to force them off the land, but the new fortress held off each attack. Finally, the locals were forced to accept their presence, and even began to attend the school. The school began to thrive, but then a new group of zealous Englishmen arrived and the witches and wizards were forced to hide until they could blend into the crowd. The muggles built a town on the location around the castle and named it Salem. It is this town which gave name to the social club "Salem Witches Institute." Now during this time, the school produced many strong and famous alumni, the most noted of which was Benjamin Franklin. Franklin did many things during his life..."

Ashley elbowed Albus who had begun to drift off to sleep.

"Wha?" Al said.

"Look," Ashley said, smiling way too large for History of Magic.

Albus looked. The door to the classroom was open and the gamekeeper, Ron Weasley was standing in it. Once he was assured that Professor Binns was not going to pause just because he entered the room, he stepped out and motioned for Rose to reenter the room. She no longer was puking; in fact she seemed to be perfectly fine.

"Busted," Albus said under his breath as she sat down.

"Oh, shut up," Rose said.

"Hey," Ron said, "You're in enough trouble young lady. Now stay in class or I won't let you look at mom's notes."

"Wait, you get to look at Hermione's notes?" Albus said disgusted.

"Shh. Not so loud, she'll find out," Ron said and then he closed the door and returned to the grounds.

"Got any of those left?" Al said quietly to Rose. Ashley elbowed him again.

"...In 1861, the United States of America split North and South over several issues. Wizarding families in the South did not want to send their children to a school in Massachusetts so they created a school at the mouth of the Mississippi River, in a little town called Mandeville, Louisiana, and they appointed Marie Leveau, the queen of voodoo, as Headmistress. The school flourished during the 5 year war, but after the surrender of the South, many of the students transferred back to Naumkeag. Leveau needed to give people a reason to come to her school instead, a reason that it was different. She invited a Native American shaman to come and join her at the school and advertised it as a new school of alternative magic. Eventually, the shaman became the Headmaster and Leveau retired to just teach voodoo at the school. Soon the school mellowed and began to teach a combination of conventional and nonconventional magic. Now, the noted graduates of Leveau are..."

Albus was distracted when Rose's head fell onto his notes and she began to drool on them. Ashley poked her and she sat bolt upright, almost head butting Albus.

"Huh, huh, hu...oh. Heh, heh, sorry Al," she said, magically removing the drool from his notes.

"No problem," Albus said, leaning calmly back in his chair. "So, you ready for Quiddich tomorrow?"

"Ravenclaw vs. Gryffindor?" Rose asked. "Is that really even a game?"

"Hey," Albus started, but then he stopped. "No, probably not. But, with James graduated now, anything is possible."

"We still have Lily. She's better at seeker than you'd think."

"You don't have to tell me how good my sister is at Quiddich," Albus said. "I get reminded every summer."

"...As the country expanded west, there became a need for a magical school west of the rocky mountains. James W. Marshall was a wizard very interested in Alchemy. He came out west with a mind to create a place to educate young Alchemists who would further the science. However, very few wizarding families proved willing to send their child across the mountains for such an unpromising venture. So, Marshall decided that he needed to prove his worth. Disguising himself as a muggle, he turned several creek beds into gold and announced that he had discovered gold in California. As a result, people from the east, both muggle and magic alike, flooded across the mountains; muggles digging for gold and magical people enrolling in Marshall School of Alchemy. This school also eventually took up teaching traditional magical arts. Now, the most famous graduate of Marshall was..."

Albus elbowed Rose and motioned for her to remain silent. Ashley Wright was clearly daydreaming and her head was beginning to bob toward her notes. Finally she fell onto the table and closed her eyes. Then she sat bolt upright, eyes wide open and very much awake.

"No, I fell asleep, I missed something, what did I miss?"

Albus looked at his notes, "Um, something about Marshall School of Alchemy. Does he know it's not there anymore?" Albus said.

"They're rebuilding," Ashley said, looking at his notes. "Hey, how did you take such great notes, you were babbling half the class?"

Albus pointed to a purple quill which was moving up and down the page on its own accord, "Self-Taking-Notes-Quill, page 32 of George's October Catalogue," he said proudly.

"That's cheating," Ashley said.

"They haven't banned it yet, therefore it is not cheating," Albus corrected her. "Besides, I could have taught this lecture better."

"Oh yeah, I'd like to see you try," Ashley said.

Albus smiled as the bell rang five o'clock across the grounds. "Be careful what you wish for," he said, "The NDA meets on Saturday." And with that, the three walked off to the grounds to enjoy what was left of their afternoon.