The Highmore Chronicles: The Lost Kingpin

Madam Duquette

“Please take a seat Eva Highmore,” said the hat in a proper tone. Eva did as she was told not wanting to anger the hat any more than she already had. For a long while the hat starred at Eva, though she wasn’t sure where its eyes were at. The silence was becoming harder and harder to sit through and finally Eva had to break it.

“I am so sorry for scaring you,” she blurted out and the hat seemed taken aback for a moment.

“No my dear, I am sorry for scaring you,” the hat said. “Well, I mean causing you any discomfort. I understand that my reaction was a little over the top.”

Eva did not comprehend why the hat was apologizing. A puzzled look fell upon her face which caused the hat to let out a cheerful laugh.

“Oh, my dear, it is not every day that I am placed upon the head of a student with the sight.”

“The sight?” Eva said still confused.

“Yes, not many people have a gift like you do. See, we magical hats dig into your mind and search for your inner qualities, some which you yourself cannot even comprehend. When we enter into the minds of a witch or wizard with a special quality sometimes it can be a bit overbearing and can cause sudden fears,” A smile grew on the hats folded face.

“So you pulled that thought out of my head then?” she asked feeling better about the incident.

“Yes, by accident of course,” the hat continued. “It’s like searching through a file cabinet. Sometime you can never tell what is actually in the item you select.”

“So, why did you sort me into Gryffindor?”

“Many have asked and I can honestly say that you will see why as the future comes forward. You will see it when it comes,” the hat said. “Of course, I was rather surprised to see two of you in one sorting. Luckily I was prepared for the second one a little more.”

Eva stopped her moving thoughts for a moment and perked up. “There was another person with the sight?”

“Well yes,” the hat began saying.

A hand fell again on Eva’s shoulder and she jumped at the touch. “Time for bed Eva,” Professor Duquette said.

Eva wanted to know who the other student was but the teacher pulled her from her seat.

“Good night Eva,” said the hat as she was escorted from the room. She tried to turn back but the delicate hands had a sturdy grip on her.

Constance Duquette walked with long elegant strides down the wide corridor. Her foot steps were soft yet echoed through the castle. There was no sign of life as they weaved their way through the castle.

Eva did not speak but instead pondered what the hat had said. There were two first years with the sight and the second must have come after her while she was busy being upset.

Finally Duquette broke the silence. “I am glad to have you alone Eva. I was quite thrilled to hear that you were accepted to Hogwarts. I am sure if the ministry was not involved another school would have had you.”

There is more than one magical school? She thought but kept quite still afraid of the tall woman.

“You understand that I am the professor of divinations. Do you know what divinations is?”

Eva shook her head, confused completely.

“Divinations is the ability of foresight. You will learn how to read tea leaves, and palms, and crystal balls to decipher the future. Most students do not excel in this subject because many do not possess the sight necessary to understand the delicate study. When I heard I had a student with the Sight I could not help but be overjoyed.”

The Sight, again the phrase came up again. Eva knew that it wasn’t normal to have these dreams but she didn’t know it had a name. Michael had always convinced her that she had a special gift but it felt like a hindrance.

“Typically, students do not take divinations until their third year, but being that your inner eye is much more attuned to the universe than most of these students will ever be I will accept you as a private student. It is not often that I have such talent walk through my door,” she gave a sweetly smile once again leading the way down the halls and up the stairs on a long route Eva couldn’t follow.

The halls were deserted, it seemed, with only small lamps to light the way. Eva was sure she could hear people moving around her in the dark but none could be seen. Only the pictures on the wall that were surrounded by darkness were clinging to the walls.

Finally Duquette stopped in front a large painting of a very large woman.

“Ah Duquette, I trust you are keeping the school in line,” came a voice from behind the painting. Eva took a step back as the woman in the painting began to move about. Her plump face had a grimace upon it and her hand grabbed her large hip.

“Fat lady,” Duquette said with the same distain. Eva’s eyebrows shot up watching the battle of words begin between the women. “I trust you have keeping your doorway in line.” The painted lady seemed to grow red with fury.

“I trust you actually brought me a Gryffindor and that you remember the password,” she spit out.

Patefacio Patecio,” Professor Duquette announced.

“And don’t forget it,” the fat lady said and the framed painting moved to reveal a small doorway.

“Good night Eva,” Duquette said and then wandered back into the darkness.

Eva stepped in and she swore she could hear the lady cursing as the painting closed behind her. The passage way led into a small cozy room with plush red furniture with gold pillows, the walls covered in tapestries and a small fire crackling in a place. At her entrance two students got up from their chairs. She had almost forgotten about the hat situation and would hope she could explain…somehow.

“You must be Eva,” said the girl seeming very tired, “My name is Tonya Howard and I am the Head Girl of Gryffindor and this is August Renly, he’s Head Boy. We are basically in charge when Professor Dwyer can’t be reached.” These two both looked much older in Eva’s eyes. Tonya was very tall compared to Eva was beautiful olive skin and large brown eyes. August was slightly shorter than her with severe acne and a puffy red nose.

“So if you will follow me, I will take you to your room,” she said and led the way up a spiral stairwell. “The girl's dormitory is on the right, up here.” She made a turn and followed the hall to another stairwell. After one flight she found two doors. “Your room is right here all of your things have already been put inside.” With that she was off leaving Eva in front of her room for the rest of the school year.

Anxiety filled up in her belly again. What if these girls had seen what had happened at dinner? What if they laughed at her or ignored her for it? She would prefer just to be ignored. She held a shaky hand up to the knob and turned it.

As the door cracked open she could hear chatting girls. She pushed the door more and slid herself in hoping not be noticed. But as she shut the door behind her there came a dead silence. Eva turned slowly to face her new roommates. Four girls, all in their pajamas were looking at her. Suddenly, a familiar face burst through the group with arms wide.

“Eva, we are going to be roommates,” she squealed and squeezed her into a hug. A weight seemed to lift off her chest as Swan embraced her tightly. “Everyone this is Eva Highmore.” There was a moment of silence again and then she was surrounded by girls all asking questions and introducing themselves. Somehow everything had been forgotten from the dinner.

Eva was allowed to get into her pajamas and was greeted as well by Myster who had made himself comfortable on her bed. He didn’t seem very happy to be surrounded by so many loud females and pretended to fall asleep as they began to talk again.

“So Eva, here, says that she likes my brother,” Swan said with a scheming smile. The girls broke out in giggles.

“No, I don’t, you asked me if he was agreeable and I said yes,” Eva defended herself not used to this sort of talk.

“She does that to everyone when they meet together,” laughed a girl named Jane Albright. She was a skinny girl with short mousy colored hair. On her face she wore large thick-rimmed glasses that made her eyes larger than they should have been. She snorted amidst her laughter which caused a riot of mirth. “Your brother might be the cutest freshman but no one will ever beat Avery Alvey for looks,” Jane continued. She made a dreamy face and sighed with the others as one, except Eva.

“Who is Avery Alvey?” she asked and was met by appalled faces.

“The son of Jamison Alvey, the star chaser of the Chudley Canons. He got requested to be on the Gryffindor Quidditch team his first year which never happens except to Harry Potter. He apparently is going to be selected as Capitan since Lancaster graduated last year. Talented and beautiful,” said Rin Grafton as she brushed out her long black hair.

Luanne Duo, a petite girl with a pixie face sat up straight with a smirk, “and single.” All the girl began to squeal.

“Where did you hear that?” Swan protested loudly.

“From my sister’s friends who are third years. He was dating that Gabrielle Jennings last year, from Hufflepuff you know. And now they aren’t talking to each other,” Luanne continued.

“That’s not true, Avery and Gabrielle were only seen once together, that doesn’t mean they were dating,” Jane said matter factly.

“How would you know? You weren’t here last year,” Luanne demanded.

“My cousin is in Ravenclaw and she is a 5th year. She has had a huge crush on him since last year,” she retorted.

“Aren’t we a little young to be liking boys?” Eva asked innocently. She had never had the chance to really become friends with any boys. There was one boy name Terry at the institute who she would often be placed next to during eating times. Of course he never said anything that made sense so she couldn’t exactly qualify that as friendship.

All of the girls seemed appalled by her comment. Clearly their interest in boys had been strong. “Eva, as an eleven year old witch, it is normal to have feelings for boys. Of course, we can’t give them that satisfaction,” Swan said with a comforting smile. “So instead we gossip, and just hope that one day a boy will ask us on a date.”

Eva was still confused. She had to like a boy but not let him know and then she would have to wait for him to pursue her. This seemed very turned around. She supposed that she would have to learn to gossip in order to not be left out of the groups nightly conversation which were sure to occur often.

After much more talking, the girls slowly made their way to their beds.

In the small circular room Eva climbed under her warm blankets next to Swan’s bed. For the first time Eva felt the exhaustion drip over her and fell into a peaceful sleep.
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