The next day, Lizzie and Charlotte entered their Gryffindor/Slytherin Charms classroom to find most of the girls in a huddle in the corner.
'What's up?' Lizzie asked Hazel, one of her Gryffindor friends.
'There are three new people joining this year! A brother and sister, and another boy. The sister is in Slytherin, the brother's in Hufflepuff and the other guy's in Gryffindor. Rose was sitting next to the sister at breakfast this morning, Carly or Caroline or something. They arrived yesterday, but are starting lessons today!'
'Why are they joining now?' said Lizzie, voicing Charlotte's thoughts. Most English children went to Hogwarts, and if they were home schooled they didn't usually change.
'Dunno, but the sister and other guy have to be in this class!' Lizzie and Charlotte shrugged and walked to their seats. Lessons were about to start.
Caroline wasn't happy. She hadn't wanted to go to Hogwarts anyway, but then Darcy was a Gryffindor? How? She had considered changing her plans, but decided the fortune and heritage made up for the... less desirable traits. He'd looked shocked. Maybe it was a mistake.
Caroline looked down at her timetable, then at Darcy's and Charles'. She had Charms first with Fitzwilliam. Good.
Charles looked down at his timetable, then at Darcy's and Caroline's. Although he had Herbology first, both of the others had Charms. He was glad that they, at least, had somebody they knew in their first lesson.
"Have you heard about the new people?"
Jane smiled, looking around at the assembled student outside the greenhouses. All she could here was people discussing these new pupils. Privately she felt sorry for them, whoever they were. Their every move would be scrutinised by their classmates.
'Hello, class.' Everyone fell silent. The Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff class turned to look at the boy standing next to Professor Sprout that they had heard so much about. Immediately, hopes and theories were dashed. He was quite clearly not an insanely rich foreign sheik, or a 7 foot tall Quidditch champion. Though his money and/or Quidditch skills remained unknown, he looked a normal, if handsome guy with red hair and a nice smile.
Bingley smiled around at his new classmates. They all looked nice. He knew Darcy would have found faults, but he was determined to get along with them. One girl in particular caught his eye. Yes, she was pretty, but she was the only person smiling back at him instead of just staring. He didn't blame them- apparently a new student was incredibly rare.
'Hello', continued the teacher next to him, Sprout. 'Welcome to your seventh year in Herbology. I hope you all had good summers. As you may have noticed, we have a new student. This is Charles Bingley. Into Greenhouse Five, please.'
Darcy groaned silently. Not only was he late to his first class due to a 'helpful' ghost giving him the wrong directions, but Caroline Bingley was following him around like a puppy, praising him and making bitchy remarks about everyone else. He wondered if she knew how obvious she was being. Probably not. Caroline wasn't the subtlest of people. It was going to be a long day, he decided as he pushed the door.
'Hello!' squeaked the tiny professor at the front of the class. 'You must be Mr. Darcy and Miss. Bingley.' Darcy blinked. The guy was tiny. His slight reaction went unnoticed, especially as Caroline drew the attention to herself by actually giggling aloud. Darcy groaned again as several students glared at Caroline. Way to make an entrance.
'Well, take a seat over there and I'll be with you in a moment'. Thankfully, Caroline was silent as she followed him to the back. It didn't last.
'Hi!' she beamed at the girl ext to her insincerely. 'I'm Caroline Bingley'
Darcy smirked as Caroline waited for a sign of recognition that obviously wasn't coming.
Bitch. Every distinguished wizarding family knows the name 'Bingley'. This girl was obviously insignificant, but as she was her only source of information, Caroline hitched up her slipping smile.
'So, what's happening at the moment?' The teacher, obviously a half breed or something, was going around to the members of the class individually. It was the plain girl on the other side of Elizabeth who answered.
'He's going around discussing our OWL results with us. First lesson is basically a free period with Flitwick.'
Caroline nodded, more interested in trying to subtly compare their robes with her own. 'So what did you get on your Charms?' She asked, satisfied that hers were much more expensive.
'An O, I'm Charlotte Lucas, by the way.'
'I see,' said Caroline, disappointed. She had only got an E. 'And you?' she asked Elizabeth.
'Same, an O. How about you... um, sorry, David?'
'William Darcy. O.' He said shortly, before going back to staring out of the window.
Great. I'm stuck with Caroline and random gossiping girls for an hour. Although, unlike Caroline, he had heard the name 'Bennet'. The noble-ish, quite respectable pureblood family had been blessed with one son. As he had been 'homeschooled', no-one outside of the family had known that he was a squib until he had grown up, married a muggle and had five daughters. Darcy was amazed that one of them had managed to get into Hogwarts, having always considered Muggles a dampener to magic. The only reason he knew their story was because his aunt had often pointed them out as a bad example when he was younger.
He looked across. Caroline was still talking to the girls, name dropping like crazy. He resigned himself to a boring lesson
At lunch, Lizzie and Charlotte headed over to the Hufflepuff table, where they'd arranged to meet Jane. She was deep in conversation with an unknown guy, presumably the third new person, so they sat down on the other side of her. The two from Charms, Caroline and Darcy, were sitting on his other side, talking to each other.
Finished describing the Triwizard Cup announcement the previous night, Jane turned to Lizzie and Charlotte.
'Hey! This is Charles Bingley, he's in my house; we met in Herbology.' explained Jane.
'Hello, I'm Charlotte'
'How're you enjoying Hogwarts? Were you homeschooled?' said Charlotte.
'It's great! It was my first practical Herbology lesson, and so cool. Oh, this is my sister Caroline and friend Darcy. Well, his name is William, but everyone calls him Darcy.'
Caroline heard her name and looked up. Those annoying girls from Herbology appeared to be following her. Assuming that they had come to find her, Caroline was about to give a polite-but firm- dismissal when she realised that they had sat themselves down next to Charles and that... Jenny? How intolerable. She looked back at Darcy, who had ignored the new arrivals completely, and decided to ignore them. She had more important things to worry about.
Elizabeth checked her watch. "Right, I have to go, but can you meet me in my common room at 7? I'm speaking to Mum.'
'Sure, see you later'
'Cool, see you at 7.'
'Bye Elizabeth, nice meeting you!'