Andre stood against the wall, silently forming a plan as to how he would get from where he was to the Hogwarts Express. The train was just a couple feet from him, but the obstacle separating him from it was a thick sea of parents and children, and with three heavy bags carrying his belongings, the journey looked impossible.
Then he saw a familiar face among the massive crowd. It was the girl he had met at Ollivanders, while waiting in line to get a wand. He had liked her. She was… different. Not really one of the friendliest people he had ever met, though. He desperately tried to match a name to her face. "Uh… J- Jade!" he called, trying to get her attention.
It worked. The brunette's head whipped around and she scanned the crowd before she saw him. He flicked his head upwards in a 'sup' gesture. She gave him a brief smile and turned back to an older woman he could only assume to be her mother, exchanged a brief word with her, and collected her suitcase from the small boy who had been carrying it. Within the minute, she had slipped through the crowd and was standing beside him.
"Hey Andre," she greeted, a bit breathless from her walk, cutting a man who shouldered past her a razor-sharp glare with her blue eyes and shoving back before turning back to her friend. "You came here alone?" she asked, noticing his lack of parents.
"Yeah, see, my Grandma can't-" he was cut off as the 15 minute warning whistle blew.
"Come on," Jade said. "Don't want to get left behind on our first day," she snatched one of his bags, getting a firm handle on it before starting to break apart the crowds of lingering kids and their overemotional parents. Andre followed behind her, feeling lucky she was so aggressive with the crowds.
As they reached the train's entrance, Jade had to stop to catch her breath and switch carrying hands. "Dang dude," she commented as she heaved the luggage up and began walking up the steps. "What did you put in this bag?"
"Oh, that's just my keyboard," Andre replied with a glance at the case before boarding the train after her.
Jade stopped walking and turned around to look at him. "You play?" she asked, her eyebrows raised with interest.
"KEEP WALKING!" shouted an irritable senior from behind them. Jade fixated a glare on him.
"I'm walking because I wanna walk," she said shortly, turning back around and continuing to walk down the hallway, searching for an at least semi-empty compartment.
The search went on for a while. The next four cars they passed were all full. Finally, Jade stopped at one door and nudged Andre. "This might be the best we can get," she said, sliding open the glass and walking inside, where an awkward looking boy with curly hair and glasses was sitting rigidly by the window, holding a toad in one hand.
"Cool if we sit here?" Jade asked.
"Uh- yes, okay," the boy replied, scooting over more than necessary and watching them as they walked in. After shoving all their stuff up in the racks above, Jade took the seat beside the boy with the toad, Andre sat opposite them.
There was a pause. "I'm Andre," he introduced himself.
"Jade," Jade added.
"My name is Robbie," the boy replied. "And this is Rex," he said, pointing to his toad.
There was more silence. Jade rolled her eyes up to the ceiling while Andre tapped his foot. Suddenly Jade sat up, remembering something. "So you play the keyboard," she reminded him.
"Oh, yeah. I've been playing since I was five, and I'm getting pretty serious about it," Andre replied, looking comfortable talking about his favorite hobby.
"That's cool. My mom has a thing for antiques, our house is full of them. We've got a SX Ingens in our den, and sometimes I'll play it."
"An SX Ingens? Oh, like, magic brand?" Andre looked less engaged.
"Yeah… why, what are you talking about?" Jade furrowed her brow.
"Wizard piano's are just a cheap imitation of muggle brands. Muggle pianos are an overall better quality, sound, and feel. No offense," Andre added.
At first, Jade looked as though she was trying to decide whether or not to be offended. Then her expression cleared and she sat back, fixing her eyes on him, a mischievous smirk growing on her face. "Prove it."
Andre grinned. "Gladly. Hey, uh, Robbie? Can you hand me that black case above your head?" he asked.
"Sure!" the boy replied, jumping up and setting his toad down on the seat between him and Jade. He fumbled for a moment before he was able to pry the suitcase Andre had requested out of the racks. Barely managing to refrain from tripping, Robbie handed him the case and sat back down.
"Thanks…" Andre had just begun to open the case when there was a light knock on the door and a boy with tan skin and fluffy hair poked his head in the compartment.
His eyes flickered briefly past Andre and Robbie before settling on Jade, sending her a subtle smile before turning to Andre. "Mind if I sit here?" he asked.
"Go ahead," Andre moved his keyboard case to the floor to empty up enough room for the boy. "You're just in time. I was just about to show those two why a muggle piano is better than a wizard piano."
"Lets here it," he replied with a shrug. Andre cleared his throat and positioned his hands, determined to impress his audience of three. Then, he began to play. The first few notes were slower, then he began to pick up the pace as he got a melody going. The two boys nodded along to the music he was making. Jade simply sat back, the faintest smile forming on her face.
Andre looked up and caught her eye, trying to read her expression. Then he stopped playing.
"That was amazing!" Robbie added.
"Well, Jade?" Andre raised his eyebrows. She looked away and rolled her eyes. She was spared from having to speak when the door swung open again and a small girl with red-velvet hair burst into the room, carrying immense amounts of energy with her.
She stopped for a moment, her brown eyes shining with excitement as she caught her breath. She was staring at Andre. "Was that you?" she asked, pointing to the keyboard in his lap.
"The music? Yeah," Andre said with a smile. "You like it?"
"LOVE! That was amazing! I love music," she said, sitting down between Robbie and Jade. "I'm Cat."
"Jade." They introduced themselves in a round.
"Well? Play something else!" Cat demanded.
Andre shrugged. "Sure." He began a different melody. This one went on a while. A few minutes later, he stopped and looked up, receiving a round of applause from his audience. "Jade, you've been awfully quiet," he said smoothly.
Jade rolled her eyes playfully. "You've got a gift," she admitted.
The next few hours went by quickly. As it turned out, they were all first-years, and they all had a gift in performing arts. Andre wanted to be a musician, Jade had a thing for acting, Cat wanted to be a singer, Beck aspired to become an actor, and Robbie had a thing for stand-up comedy. And so, the five had a lot to talk about.
"You know what?" Cat gasped. "We should join an arts club!"
After exchanging a few looks, the group nodded along. "I'm sure in a school this big, they're bound to have one," Andre reasoned.
"So its decided," Jade said. "Once we get to school, we'll try and find more information and clue each other in on it."
There was a knock on the door. "Hey, we'll be at Hogwarts in thirty minutes, so hurry up and get your robes on," the prefect said before she left down the hall to go notify the others. The five of them grabbed their stuff and headed down to the changing compartments.
Twenty-five minutes later, they were staring out their window at the majestic school in front of them. "Wow," Robbie said.
"This is pretty incredible," Andre added.
"Its so much bigger than the picture!" Cat exclaimed. After the train stopped, they made their way out of their car, dropping off their luggage where they were told to and walking outside, where there was a crowd forming. They stood together, a bit confused, until the same prefect tapped Beck on the shoulder and pointed him towards a wirey man off to the right. As they walked towards him, they could hear him yelling,
"FIRST YEARS, OVER HERE! ALL FIRST YEARS, FOLLOW ME!"