Harry Potter and a lot of the characters and universe in this story are NOT mine. This is a fanfiction, meaning basically with the exception of some original characters, the ideas and universe all belong to J.K. Rowling. Please support the official release.
Tedrick Morgan pushed his trolley through King's Cross Station. Just a short distance behind him was his fraternal twin brother Callan. The pair of eleven year olds were looking for Platform 9 and ¾ at the moment, but seemed unable to locate it. They could see the ticket inspector's stand between platforms nine and ten, but there was no indication that a platform existed somewhere in between. Ted gazed at the barrier between platforms and shared a significant glance with Callan, who returned the glance with a shrug. They had been instructed to come here so they could catch the train to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, which they had learned about a month ago when a giant named Hagrid came to their aunt and uncle's house and delivered them their official invitation to attend the magical school.
Ted stood the slightly shorter twin, with piercing blue eyes, a kind expression to his face, and hair that was messy, thick, and a dark shade of brown that could be mistaken for black. Callan's hair was reddish and he was both taller and thinner, but his eyes were exactly the same as Ted's. The twins even differed in personalities. Ted was very outgoing, somewhat wild, and extremely upbeat. Callan was quieter and more reserved than Ted, and more disciplined, but nevertheless a very fine boy.
Ted's dark hair presently looked even wilder and more windswept than it usually did, for he and Callan had been very hurriedly dropped off in front of King's Cross by their horrible relatives, the Crumps. Their uncle Vincent Crump had insisted upon ridding himself of Ted and Callan as soon as possible, and their aunt Kendra couldn't agree with him more. Preston and Priscilla had made faces at them out the window as their car pulled away from the station, leaving the twins totally stranded there.
You see, Ted and Callan had lost their parents when they were very young, in fact, both were only a year old. Their parents had been killed by Death Eaters, and the twins were left with the Crumps after their parents' deaths. Uncle Vincent had a tendency for barking orders at them. Kendra merely looked at them with disgust most of the time. Preston and Priscilla were terrible though. Preston was far larger than them, and loved to beat up on them, while Priscilla used her scathing words to taunt them.
Ted and Callan both looked and felt very shabby next to others in the station, not only because of how small and thin they were, but also because of how baggy their clothes were. The clothes belonged to Preston, so they were a good deal too big. Ted's t-shirt nearly reached his knees, and he'd had to roll up the bottoms of the jeans he wore into large cuffs so it wouldn't drag along the ground.
They had continued walking after asking a passing guard about the platform. The passing guard had turned away, mumbling about pranksters and punks these days, when they heard something.
"All right, all right, Mum. Don't bite my head off. I know how to get onto Platform 9 and ¾." said someone in what Ted noted to be an Australian accent. The twins shared another significant glance (their primary means of communication) before spinning around.
There was a big boy there, about their age. He was tall and wiry with muscle, and possessed thick brown hair. He was walking, looking slightly harassed as his mother fixed his navy-colored coat. He was also pushing a trolley, his owl a male Great Horned Owl that easily caught their attention.
"I can't believe my little Barky is going to Hogwarts." said the boy's mother. The boy flushed an embarrassed bright red and his mouth broke into a near-scowl.
"Mum, you're going to embarrass me before I even get on the train." the boy groaned. The boy's mother hung back for a moment as though observing her son carefully, knowing it was the last glance of him she would have for a while. The boy rolled his eyes and flushed a deeper red.
"All right. Can you make it on your own from here? Your father needs a hand with the gnomes at home, I'm sure." she asked, ceasing her fretting.
"Yes." the boy said, beaming brightly.
"All right, Barku. Have a good term." his mother said, hugging him. "Make sure to keep Brutus fed up."
"Will do." replied the boy, hugging his mother back and smiling. His mother turned and disappeared in the crowd, while he examined his owl. If anyone could help Ted and Callan onto the platform, it was this boy. Ted bravely approached the boy.
"Excuse me?" he asked. The bigger boy turned to face the twins, a little surprised, as though he had not been expecting to see anyone else. Ted felt very self-conscious. His black baggy t-shirt that reached his knees, his large cuffed jeans, scuffed red high tops and baggy blue flannel had to look rather unappealing, like he was definitely impoverished. He knew Callan must have felt the same way, as his jeans were almost as baggy as Ted's and his grey sweater was a poor fit. The boy in front of them wore dark denim jeans that fit perfectly and a navy coat that actually fit him. The whites of his shoes shone bright and unscuffed.
"What is it?" the boy asked, not staring at the ill-fitting clothes of the twins, much to Ted's surprise. He looked curiously at their faces and not what they wore.
"I wanted to know...if you knew...how to get onto the platform?" Ted asked with uncertainty. He felt embarrassed and stupid to ask such a question. Surely everyone else knew how to get onto the platform.
The boy stared for a moment.
"Are you a Muggle-born or something?" the boy asked them, in a manner perhaps a bit more forthright than most would have.
"No. Our parents were wizards. We were raised by Muggles though." Callan said delicately. The boy looked them over curiously, cocking his head a bit before he made his decision.
"You just walk at that wall between platforms nine and ten. Do it at a run if you're scared." the boy explained with a brash grin. "Watch me have at it."
They attentively watched him approach the wall. He had a strong, brisk, confident sort of stride that told Ted that he most certainly had never been bullied. His height advantage seemed to serve great purpose here. The boy then sped up his walk until it broke into a run. Just as he was about to collide with the brick wall, he suddenly vanished. Ted and Callan gaped at one another.
"Well, you on first." Callan said, giving Ted's shoulder a light push. Ted boldly stepped forward and began to walk briskly towards the wall, hoping he looked at least half as confident as the boy before him. His snowy owl, Hades, hooted in a bewildered manner as Ted broke into a run. The boy screwed his eyes shut, waiting for impact, and then...
Ted was suddenly standing before a scarlet steam engine. A wrought sign overhead read "Hogwarts Express, eleven o' clock". The platform he now stood on was packed with other children of many ages and sizes. Small ones clung to their parents, while boys and girls his age and older mingled about, some of them just observing curiously like he did while others seemed to be reuniting with one another. Cats of all colors wound their way among legs and baggage, while owls either flew around briefly or hooted in cages being loaded onto the train. For the children who appeared to be closer to his age, he saw fathers helping their children load their luggage aboard while mothers fretted over coats and hair and whispered warm reminders. The boy from before stood in front of Ted, grinning at him as Callan appeared from behind them, looking dazed.
"That was brilliant!" Callan exclaimed, a twinkle in his eyes that Ted had sorely missed seeing while they were stuck at the Crump home.
"I'm Barku, by the way." said the bigger boy, offering a hand. "Barku Altair. And you are?"
"Tedrick Morgan, but you can call me Ted. And this is my twin brother, Callan."
"Well Ted and Callan, wanna get a compartment on the train with me?" Barku offered kindly. All it took was one look into Barku's eyes to see that he was genuinely friendly, so the twins both enthusiastically accepted his offer and were glad to have found a friend. The boys loaded their luggage onto the train with precise teamwork and were made to put their owls with the other companion animals, though Callan vehemently refused leaving his cat, Chief, and instead carried the pure black feline in his arms as they wound down the corridor, looking for an empty compartment. They soon found the only empty compartment left - which happened to be the very last as well - and flopped down in the plush scarlet seats.
The shrill cry of the whistle sounded and the train began slowly chugging off to a start. The boys could not see the parents waving away to their children as they sat on the side opposite the loading platform, but saw children crowding the hall windows as they bid their parents farewell. Ted was sitting beside the window in their compartment on the end facing the head of the train while Barku sat across from him, facing towards the end of it. Callan had taken the seat right beside Ted and was stroking Chief, who sat on Callan's lap quite contentedly. They watched as the train finally left the platform and now entered the streets of London, slowly cutting its way through the city. Ted got the distinct feeling that nobody outside was noticing the scarlet engine, but a couple in bright robes waved merrily at the train from their home.
The door of their compartment slid open, revealing a brown-haired boy that was around Callan's height. He had blue eyes and a kind and happy sort of face. He wore jeans and a red striped shirt. Both were baggy on him, so Ted and Callan relaxed a bit. .
"Mind if I sit here? Everywhere else is packed." the boy asked, sounding nervous as though he thought they would reject him.
"No, not at all." Ted answered immediately, offering the boy a smile. The boy smiled back and sat in the space just across from Callan, beside Barku. His smile was warm and kind.
"I'm Clifford Dorsey, by the way." he said brightly, looking around the compartment curiously. His eyes rested appreciatively on Chief. Callan took notice and smiled back at the boy.
"I'm Ted Morgan. Across from you is my twin brother, Callan." Ted said, and he watched Clifford shake hands with Callan right away as though he had been eager to.
"And I'm Barku Altair." Barku said, leaning back in his seat with a confident grin on his face.
"Nice to meet you all." Clifford said. "Aren't you all excited? I've always heard about Hogwarts from my older brothers, but I never dreamed I'd be boarding the train there so soon."
"Fuck yeah." Barku said enthusiastically. Ted grinned as his own insides began to spark with happiness. He wanted nothing more in the world than to go to Hogwarts right now, especially since he had friends now, for the first time in his life.
"Of course." Callan replied in a much more disciplined manner, nonetheless smiling. Ted knew he was just as excited. The twins had headed to bed early the night before and spent an hour just talking to each other and urging the other to go to sleep.
"I just hope the classes aren't difficult." Clifford sighed, wrinkling his nose. "I haven't exactly memorized my textbooks. It's not the easiest stuff to look at when you're new to all this."
"We haven't either." Ted said, glad that he and Callan weren't the only ones heading into the school without knowing the course material. From the look of things, Barku hadn't either, as he broke into a sheepish grin.
"Even without memorizing them, they can't be too hard." Barku scoffed boldly. "They won't just throw us into the thick of things."
"You're right." Callan confirmed, nodding. "With Muggle-born students attending, they can't just pull a fast one on us. They'll give us a good amount of time for everyone to get a head-start."
The compartment door slid open. In the hallway stood a plump witch with a cheerful face, pushing a trolley full of what looked like some delicious sweets. Ted scanned for a Double Decker bar, but they didn't carry Double Decker bars. The candies were strange but delicious-looking nonetheless, with brands Ted had never before heard of.
"Anything off the trolley, dears?" she asked, smiling. Ted and Barku both stood up, and the empty space on the seats of the compartment was occupied by armloads of sweets of every kind the trolley carried. Barku grinned at them all and bit into a Chocolate Frog, while Ted unwrapped a sweetly scented Cauldron Cake and bit into it as conversation broke out again.
"Oi, so what Quidditch team do you lot support?" Barku queried as he chewed through his mouthful of chocolate.
"Cal and I don't know much about Quidditch." Ted admitted. He had read a small explanation in a book on display while waiting for their books to be purchased at Flourish and Blotts, but that was all. From what he'd read though, it was an incredibly popular wizarding sport.
"Well, what team do you support?" Clifford asked Barku.
"The Australian team, of course." Barku said in a matter-of-fact way as he proudly displayed his t-shirt beneath the navy jacket, emblazoned with the emblem of the Australian team.
"Of the British and Irish teams, I mean ." Clifford clarified.
"Chudley Cannons, I guess." Barku said, shrugging as he looked Clifford over. "You?"
"Puddlemere United." Clifford replied, grinning when Barku reacted with surprise.
Ted and Callan listened intently as Barku and Clifford explained the game in detail to them. They were going over the finer points of Quidditch, when the compartment door slid open. It was a slightly older boy, with short, dark hair and brown eyes.
"Has anyone in here seen a Great Grey Owl? A boy named LT has lost one." he asked them as his eyes darted around the compartment.
"Not at all." Ted and Clifford replied, almost in unison. The boy was still studying the compartment and occasionally turning to view the compartment across from theirs as though the owl would suddenly turn up.
"How did it get loose, exactly?" Callan asked, sounding puzzled as the boy whipped around once more to face him.
"Well LT was sitting in his compartment. I was showing him Wizard's Chess. He was feeding his owl, Titan, at the time. My knight smashing LT's bishop ended up spooking Titan, and he flew out into the corridor." the boy said, an almost apologetic look on his face.
"We'll keep an eye out for him, mate." Barku said. The older boy nodded and smiled at them brightly.
"Thank you." he said, leaving the compartment in a hurry. A rather tall boy with red hair followed him. The boy still wore Muggle clothes; a somewhat baggy purple t-shirt and khaki pants.
As time wore on, the train gradually began to slow and the sky outside was becoming a darker blue by the minute. Ted and his friends covered the open window panes of the compartment and changed two at a time into their school robes, taking the folded Muggle clothes back into their suitcases for storage. The sweets had long been eaten up save for a remaining few that had been stowed into dark pockets. By now, LT's owl had been found, but only after it had decided to pass its droppings onto the crisp robes of a Slytherin prefect. Barku had just finished detailing his most recent trip to the Australian Quidditch matches when a voice echoed throughout the locomotive.
"We will be reaching Hogwarts in five minutes' time. Please leave your luggage on the train. It will be taken to the school separately."
The four boys left the compartment, each having a hard time controlling his excitement. Callan regretfully returned Chief to his carrier before they strode down the corridor and joined a throng of uniformed students that lined along the doors. The train finally came to a complete stop and they all clambered off of the train and stepped onto a small and rather dark platform. It was while he was looking around the station that Ted was quite suddenly shoved. The thin boy fell and knocked Callan over with him.
"Watch yourself!" a brown-haired boy sneered at them. He was about their size with neatly combed hair and pale arctic-blue eyes. He turned to a larger and bulkier companion with short-cropped black hair and brown eyes and the two of them smirked at one another.
"Oi, you shove off!" Barku shouted, stepping forward to meet the new challenge. He shoved the smaller brown-haired boy, who fell over like a poorly placed domino. The bigger boy stood to face Barku and Clifford reluctantly moved forward with a slight frown as though uncomfortable at the idea of fighting. Ted and Callan both shakily stood and the brown-haired kid must have seen that he was outnumbered, for he turned away and crossed his arms tersely.
"C'mon Ross." he muttered begrudgingly. "They aren't worth another minute of our time."
"But Dyllan, he shoved you." Ross protested, turning to glower at them. Dyllan merely shook his head and Ross glared daggers at them before turning away and walking off with his friend. Ted blinked. He didn't expect to be encountering another student in such a way already. This wasn't good.
"Cowards." Barku spat passionately as they watched the unpleasant duo stride away. Callan then pointed, for a lamp was bobbing over the crowd of students. They wound their way over to it and discovered that it was none other than Rubeus Hagrid, the man responsible for introducing Ted and Callan to the wizarding world. Barku gaped up at him in awe and Clifford smiled shyly as the twins both broke into grins.
"Firs' years! This way! Firs' years, over here! Hello Ted and Callan."
The timid pack of first years all stumbled behind Hagrid and walked a steep and narrow path through the trees. The sky was almost inky-black in appearance and the darkness around them was so thick that it was as though the night had swallowed them whole. This darkness enveloped them in a silence laced with both fear and anxiety, but also nerves and excitement. Nobody spoke much, but all were content to pack close together and keep in a dense herd behind their half-giant escort.
"Yeh'll get see Hogwarts for the firs' time in a sec," Hagrid bellowed to them through the silence, "Righ' now."
Loud cries of "Oooh!" and "Ahh!" pierced the silent night at once as the path suddenly opened up to allow observance of a most beautiful sight across a lake that looked as though it was made of perfectly smooth black glass. Perched atop a high mountain on the opposite side of the sparkling lake was a massive castle that was adorned with towers and detailed with turrets. The lights from its many windows hung in the air like dozens of lanterns floating stationary in the sky, their reflections making the lake before them shimmer even more like hundreds of giant fireflies were milling around.
"Four an' only four to a boat." Hagrid called out, gesturing towards a fleet of ten small wooden boats that sat in the shallows. He lumbered over to an eleventh boat at the back that was much larger and sat in it. The first, second, and third boats were immediately claimed by well-established foursomes of students, but Callan moved like lightning and seized the fourth boat, clambering into the front of with Clifford while Barku and Ted gently pushed it far enough out to float as they hopped in before the boat lost them.
"Everyone's in?" Hagrid asked. "Righ' then...FORWARD!"
The fleet of little boats suddenly and softly came to life and moved forward in a smooth way as though it were gliding across the sparkling water. Ted stared up at the castle with wide eyes. It was the most beautiful place he had ever seen in his entire life. Barku slung an arm around Ted's shoulders and began whispering things he'd heard about the famous castle into Ted's ear as though they were well-kept secrets. Just ahead of them, Callan and Clifford were musing about classes.
"Heads down!" Hagrid bellowed loud enough for all sides of the lake to hear as the boats approached the jutting rocky cliff of the mountain the castle was perched on. All eyes took one last lingering gaze at the tremendous castle before them before obliging, ducking their heads low. For boys as tall as Barku and LT, nearly laying down in the boat was their way of being sure they didn't crack their heads, even though they weren't quite tall enough for it to be a legitimate concern. Anyone sitting up would have had a good chance of cracking their head though as they headed through a thick overhand of ivy that masked an opening in the face of the cliff. The eleven boats traveled along a dark corridor that seemed to be taking them somewhere below the castle.
They soon reached an underground harbor, where they climbed out warily. A moment of excitement broke out as a dark-haired and fierce-eyed Filipino boy began brawling with a small and sour-looking weedy boy and the others crowded around to get a glimpse. Hagrid grabbed both boys by the back of their robes and hauled them apart, glaring.
"All righ' that's enough!" he boomed distastefully. All of them fell silent and Hagrid led them through a passageway in the rock, beaming with pleasure that he had contained such a situation. The passageway led them up higher and higher until they came out of a small tunnel and onto the smooth damp grass. The night air was welcomingly chilly and Ted thoroughly enjoyed the breeze that whipped his hair. They trudged up to a great oak door that was rather imposing.
"Everyone here?" Hagrid asked. Some were unabashed enough to reply with words. Hagrid gave them all an encouraging smile and he turned and knocked on the door three times.