Oct 21, 2021 11:02 PM
where you ought to be
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!!!

She's the second of her friends Sorted - Ami's the first, of course - and she goes to sit at Gryffindor, waving first at Hermione and then at Neville to come sit by her.

(It's a little bit sad that Ami didn't get into Gryffindor with them...)

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Ami claps for all three of his friends when they're Sorted, beaming.

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Serpens Malfoy ends up sitting next to him (she'd talked very briefly with the Hat; he'd mentioned she might be a fit for Ravenclaw, but they both agreed she really belonged in Slytherin). 

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The murmurs of conversation die down, as a tall, thin, bearded man stands up from the center of the Head Table.  A brass owl decorating the table in front of him flares its wings and rises into the position of a podium.  The attention of the hall becomes fixed on him.

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Huh. He looks wizard-y, more than most wizards Harriet's seen.

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"Welcome," he calls jovially to the Great Hall, "and/or welcome back, to Hogwarts!  Six sevenths of you know me as Headmaster Albus Dumbledore, and now seven sevenths of you do.  To our new students, I hope you will discover you were sorted well, and to our returning ones, I hope you will do your best to help make it so.  I would like to take a moment now to introduce the rest of our fine staff, but the look on your faces tells me I should probably get you fed first, so, if you please - "

He steps back from the podium, inclines his head and spreads his hands, and a banquet's worth of food appears on each House table.

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Wow! She blinks down at the suddenly appearing food, surprised, and gingerly begins serving herself a little bit of everything in reach.

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The food is delicious, best-of-the-best of wizarding fare; dessert comes after dinner, naturally, and is just as tasty and even more overtly magical.

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Dumbledore gets to his feet once again as the feast ends.  "I do love our feasts," he says conversationally.  "I hope everyone found it at least as delicious as I did.  Now, briefly, before you all head off to bed, I should go over a few things.  First years should note that the Forbidden Forest is out of bounds to students of all ages, per the appellation 'Forbidden Forest.'  It is home to many kinds of dangerous magical creatures, and portions of it are considered the jurisdiction of the native Centaur tribe, who do not take kindly to wizarding interlopers.  Deep diving in the Hogwarts Lake is also prohibited, although you are at liberty to wade.  No magic is to be used between classes in the corridors, and in particular you are not to attempt to cast jinxes on your fellow students.  The Restricted Section of the Hogwarts library is also out of bounds to students without a signed notice from a professor."

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She listens intently, noting that she should find out if magic is allowed outside of classes not in the corridors.

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"But on what I hope should be a less tiresome note, I also wish to introduce some of our staff.  You will have already met Deputy Headmistress Minerva McGonagall, head of Gryffindor House..."

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She nods her head and waves a little.

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"In Ravenclaw we have Filius Flitwick," a small and oddly crumpled-looking old man, "and in Hufflepuff, Pomona Sprout."  A plump, maternal sort of woman who gives a wide smile as she's introduced.  "And heading up Slytherin House is Professor Severus Snape."

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A severe-looking dark haired man, presumably Professor Snape, inclines his head expressionlessly, his eyes briefly skating over the tables.

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She notes each one, mentally repeating their names to herself. (Teachers don't like it when you forget their names.) (Also she tries to figure out their personalities a bit, but, well, she doesn't have much to go on yet.)

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"You'll have plenty of occasions to get to know the rest of your teachers in the coming weeks," Dumbledore says.  "But for now, it's been a long day and a hearty feast for us as well as for you, and many of us on both sides of the head table are probably about ready for bed; so I'll send you off.  First years, follow your House Prefects to your dormitories."

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She stands with the others, sticking close to Hermione and Neville as they file out - staring around in wonder, still, at all the magic of the place.

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The Gryffindor prefects lead the new first years through broad fire-lit stone corridors, up wide marble stairs, and eventually to a large portrait of a large woman, halfway down a corridor lined with similarly-sized paintings, who looks down at the new students wryly.

"Password?" she asks.

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One of the prefects, who'd introduced himself as Percy Weasley, enunciates clearly: "Caput Draconis."

The portrait swings forth from the wall like a door, revealing a short hidden passageway to the Gryffindor common room.

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"Most of the portraits will come to recognize all the new students in the next few weeks," Percy Weasley says as the students clamber through the hole, "but you should be sure to remember the passwords anyway, it adds a bit of security."

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She nods. "What happens if you forget one?"

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"I'll let you in, dear," the portrait calls in a motherly sort of voice.  (A few of the kids chuckle.)

"Yeah," says another prefect, a girl who never introduced herself, "realistically people don't try to sneak into other dorms by shapeshifting into students and pretending to forget the password very often."

"But best practice is to ask a Prefect or another Gryffindor student," Percy says.

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"Okay."

Best practices sound good. Kids are jerks, a lot. She bets if they could sneak places they aren't allowed by shapeshifting they would.

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"Quiet hours are ten PM to seven AM," Percy says, "and you're not allowed to leave the common room during that period either, but there's no set bedtime.  Best to get in the habit of getting a good night's sleep, though," he adds pointedly.  And it is getting pretty late.

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