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The Chronicles of Charlotte Potter: Year One

Chapter 2: Friends Easily Made, Enemies Easily Dismissed

Charlotte hugged both her dad and her godfather tightly. “If you need anything, owl me.” Samuel said, not admitting the idea of his daughter at Hogwarts terrified him.

“Okay, Dad. I’ll be fine. Really.” She kissed his cheek. “Uncle Remus, make sure he doesn’t brood.”

Remus smiled. “I will. Owl us and let us know which house you make, okay?”

She nodded, and, already in her robes, scampered off to the middle compartment on the train. It had her father’s initials in there, along with his friends, and she felt she was making her Uncle James proud by sitting here. “Mind if I sit here?” Harry asked as she was unlocking her kitten’s cage.

“Course not.” She grinned, moving slightly. “Did Dad see you before he left?” Harry nodded, sitting down. “You don’t talk much, do you?”

“Never really had anyone to talk to.” He said honestly.

“Well, now you do.” She said cheerfully as the door slid open.

A young boy, taller than her, with dirt on his nose stood there. “You mind if I join you? Everywhere else is full.”

“Not at all.” Harry scooted over to make room. “I’m Harry. Harry Potter.”

“Really? Wicked! Have you really got the scar?” Harry pulled his bangs back. “I’m Ron, by the way. Ron Weasley.” The ginger never even noticed Charlotte. “Do you remember anything from that?”

“Just a lot of green light. Nothing else.” Charlotte huffed, staring out the window. “Oh! Um, this is my cousin, Charli Potter.”

Ron just nodded. Charli huffed again. “I’m going to see if anyone else will be a bit nicer, Weasley.” She stated haughtily, walking out of the compartment with her kitten, Merlin, on her shoulder.

She found an empty compartment further down and sat down, looking out the window. The compartment door slid open and Lucius Malfoy’s only son, Draco, stepped in, followed by two idiotic looking boys. “So I’m assuming the elusive Harry Potter isn’t in this compartment.”

“Try the middle compartment, Malfoy.” She answered easily.

“You know who I am, do you?” He held out his hand. “Malfoy. Draco Malfoy.”

She shook it, a slight smirk on her lips. “Potter. Charli Potter.”

“Father’s talked about Samuel before, of course.” Malfoy said with an air of arrogance. “Anyways, I’m off to find your cousin. Hopefully, I’ll see you in Slytherin.”

“Yeah, I hope so, too. My other godfather’s the Head of Slytherin House.” She informed him. “See you later, Draco.”

Not long after he left, the compartment door slid open again. “Have you seen a toad? A boy named Neville’s lost one.” A bushy haired brunette with rather large front teeth asked bossily.

“Sorry, no.” Charlotte replied politely. “I’m Charli Potter, by the way.”

“Hermione Granger. Your cat is absolutely gorgeous.”

“Thank you! His name’s Merlin.”

“I’ll probably come back. I’m going to keep helping Neville.” Hermione smiled brightly and left, but someone’s foot was in the way when she tried to close the door.

A tall black boy and a shorter, sandy-haired boy with aqua blue eyes entered the compartment. “Um, sorry. Our’s just got taken over. May we sit with you?”

“Sure.”

“I’m Dean Thomas.”

“Me name’s Seamus Finnigan.” His Irish brogue was thick and Charlotte giggled.

“I’m Charli Potter.”

Seamus scowled slightly at her. “Why’d yah laugh?”

“Your accent’s really strong.” She said apologetically. “I wasn’t making fun of you, Seamus.”

He relaxed. “Oh, okay.” Merlin meowed, jumping from her lap to the Irish boy’s. “Uh, sorry.”

“For what? I want Merlin to be properly socialized.” Charlotte stated.

The two boys laughed. “He’s a cat.” Dean pointed out.

“Well, he gives me a chance to meet new people. Hopefully new people that like pranks and fun as much as I do.”

Seamus grinned. “I do like a good prank. Dean, yah in?”

Dean hesitated. “Sure, why not?”

Charlotte leaned back. “Excellent.”

Just then, the door slid open yet again. “Oh, Charli! Thank Merlin I found you!” A redheaded girl plopped down on the seat beside Charlotte.

“Oh, hey, Isobel. This is Seamus and Dean. They like pranks.”

Isobel grinned. “Me too.”

“So, you two already know each other?”

Charlotte nodded. “Her mum was best friends with my mum and now, Isobel’s my best friend.”

“That’s cool. Dean and I met on the train.” After the trolley came by, the four new friends shared their candy and talked some more. “What’s going to be our first prank?” Seamus asked, his mouth full of a Pumpkin Pasty.

“We should probably wait until we know what house we’re all going to be in and then talk about pranks.” Charlotte suggested.

Soon, the train slowed down and finally stopped. They all got off nervously, looking around. “Firs’ years, this way!”

“Whoa!” Seamus said, looking up at Hagrid.

They followed the crowd of first years to Hagrid, who led them down a slippery slope to the edge of a huge lake, where boats sat in a row. Hagrid got one all to himself and Charlotte scrambled into one with Seamus, Dean, and Isobel as the one with Harry was occupied by Weasley, Hermione, and another boy with a round face and a toad. She assumed that must be Neville. The water looked like black ink in the moonlight, the castle looming ahead of them.

All too soon, they were rushed forward by a stern-looking woman, Professor McGonagall, and the Sorting Ceremony began. The Sorting Hat sang a quick song, describing the houses and then, the first student was called. “Abbott, Hannah!”

“HUFFLEPUFF!”

“Bones, Susan!”

“HUFFLEPUFF!”

On the list went. “Finnigan, Seamus!”

“GRYFFINDOR!” The Sorting Hat said after a whole minute.

“Granger, Hermione!”

“GRYFFINDOR!”

Charlotte’s attention lulled and instead, she looked up at the ceiling. “MacDougal, Isobel!”

“RAVENCLAW!”

Charlotte cheered, her mind wandering off again, this time wondering what house she’d be in. “Malfoy, Draco!”

As soon as the hat touched his head, it yelled, “SLYTHERIN!”

A short lull, and then, “Potter, Charlotte!”

She sat down shakily on the stool and the hat dropped over her eyes. “Well, well, a very sharp mind, indeed, clever, cunning, and plenty of ambition. But, where shall you go? Slytherin? You’ve got talent, my goodness, yes, and lots of wit. Better be RAVENCLAW!”

She took the seat beside Isobel, glad she’d gotten in with one of her friends. And then, “Potter, Harry!”

“GRYFFINDOR!” The hat shouted soon after.

He received the loudest cheer yet, and Charlotte turned her attention to the staff table, waving at her second godfather, Severus Snape. He gave her a small smile. “Thomas, Dean!”

“GRYFFINDOR!”

Not long after that, the Sorting Ceremony was over and it was time to eat. Albus Dumbledore stood to his feet, welcomed them all to Hogwarts, and the food magically appeared on the plates. “Whoa!” Charlotte said, taking a bite of the potatoes.

After the delicious feast and announcements from Professor Dumbledore, the students were dismissed and Charlotte followed the Ravenclaw prefect up to the tallest tower. The bronze eagle door-knocker opened his mouth. “Which came first, the phoenix or the flame?”

“A circle has no beginning.”

The door opened and Charlotte gasped. They’d stepped into a huge, circular room with the dome ceiling painted with stars. Blue and bronze drapes covered the windows, and bookcases lined the walls. “The dormitories lie behind the door beside Rowena.” The prefect, Penelope Clearwater, pointed at the statue. “The girls’ dormitory is to the left, boys to the right.”

Charlotte followed Lisa Turpin. Mandy Brocklehurst, and Padma Patil through to their dormitory. Five four poster beds with deep blue curtains stood in the room, and, to Charlotte’s happiness, she had the bed closest to the washroom. Isobel, of course, chose the bed next to hers. Then Lisa, Padma, and finally, Mandy had the bed closest to the door. The girls sat up for a while longer, and Merlin curled up on her pillow, purring.

When she woke the next morning, she pulled her uniform on, grabbed her twelve inch ebony, dragon heartstring wand, and joined Isobel and Mandy as they made their way to the Great Hall. After a hearty breakfast, the girls made their way to the dungeons to have their first Potions lesson. They were in a class with Hufflepuffs, and Charlotte thought one of the Hufflepuff boys looked rather stupid as she sat in the front row beside Isobel. The Potions Master, Professor Snape reminded her of a bat as he came to a stop in front of them. He started roll call, pausing at her name. “Charlotte Potter.” His black eyes, devoid of any warmth until they spotted her, landed on her hazel eyes and he looked at her curiously. But, he finished calling the rest of the names. “There will be no silly incantations or foolish wand-waving in this class. As such, I do not expect many of you to get the fine and delicate art that is potion making. I can teach you how to bewitch the mind, ensnare the senses, and even put a stopper in death. That is, if you aren’t as big a bunch of dunderheads I usually have to teach.” He took a breath. “Potter, what would I get if I added powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?” He asked suddenly.

“With other ingredients, the Draught of Living Death, Professor.” She answered quickly.

“Where would you look if I asked you to find me a bezoar?”

“In the stomach of a goat.”

He frowned. “What is the difference between monkshood and wolfsbane?”

She kept his gaze, knowing he was testing her for fun. “They’re the same plant, also called aconite.”

Then, Snape paired her with Isobel and they started to brew a simple potion to cure boils. He didn’t say anything as he swept through the room, peering into their cauldrons. When she and Isobel managed a perfect potion, he grudgingly gave then ten points for Ravenclaw. The two girls high-fived across the table before they packed up. “What’s next?” Isobel asked curiously.

“Defense Against the Dark Arts.” Charlotte answered automatically. “Let’s go see what Quirrell’s like, Is. We have this with the Gryffindors.” She grinned, taking the seat behind her cousin. He’d been a lot friendlier with her recently. “Hey, Harry.”

“Hey, Charli.” He answered as the ginger, Weasley, slid in the seat beside him.

Charlotte frowned at him, but Quirrell stood to his feet and began the lesson. “Professor, why do you have a turban on?” Seamus Finnigan asked curiously.

“An A-African prince gave it t-to me a-as a gift f-for defeating a z-zombie.”

“Seriously? Wicked! How’d you do it?”

Quirrell turned pink and changed the subject.

Ravenclaws had Transfiguration with Slytherins, and when Charlotte took her seat, Draco sat down next to her. “Charli.”

“Draco.”

Then, Professor McGonagall started class, and after a lot of tricky, complicated notes, they began to change a match into a needle. At the end of the lesson, Charlotte was the only one who managed it. “No wonder you’re in Ravenclaw.” Draco smirked. “Nice job.”

“Thanks.” She smiled at her new friend. “You excited for flying lessons next week?”

“Definitely. Hope to see you out there.”

They separated in the Great Hall and Charlotte flopped down between Mandy and Isobel. “You’re friends with Malfoy?” Mandy asked in disbelief.

Charlotte stiffened. “He’s nice to me.” She then ate quickly, leaving the Great Hall.

Charms turned out to be different as well. When Professor Flitwick, her Head of House, called Harry’s name, he toppled out of sight, falling off the pile of books on the chair. But, as they practiced the Softening Charm, she came to the realization that there was going to be something she sucked at. Hermione, however, was the first person to master the simple charm, succeeding in softening her Charms textbook. “Spongify.” Charlotte pointed her wand at her book, but nothing happened. She sighed, looking over at Hermione. “How’d you do it?”

“Like this.” Hermione pointed her wand at Charlotte’s book. “Spongify.” As she said the spell, she twisted her hand slightly to the left, and the book was soft.

“Oh, okay. Thanks.”

Flitwick came around and reversed the effects on those properly softened books, telling them to practice it further.

Flying lessons turned out to be dull as they were with Hufflepuff. Zacharias Smith, a first year Charlotte had taken almost an instant dislike to, boasted, “I’m probably going to be the best flier here.”

“Probably not, but you’re definitely the stupidest.” Charlotte retorted.

“Oh, really? What makes you say that?”

“Well, I haven’t seen any evidence to the contrary, Smith.”

“You’re just jealous.”

She snorted. “Of what?”

“Stick your right hand over your broomstick and say up!” Madam Hooch barked, stopping their argument.

Charlotte did, and as she thought it would, the broom immediately jumped into her hand. With a satisfied smirk, she saw that Smith’s didn’t even move. “Now, when I blow my whistle kick off from the ground hard. Keep your broom steady, rise a few feet, and then come straight back down by leaning forward slightly. On my whistle now, one, two three.”

They followed instruction and most of the class wasn’t half-bad. And, with that good feeling, the class traipsed to the Great Hall. “Eye of rabbit, harp string hum, turn this water into rum.” Then, Seamus’s goblet exploded.

Charlotte snickered, sitting down beside him. “Reparo.”

“Thank you.”

“No problem, Seamus.” As she got up to leave, the way was blocked by Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle.

“Having a last meal, Potter? When are you getting the train back to the Muggles?”

“You’re a lot braver now that you’re back on the ground…”

“What happened?” She asked Seamus.

“Ah, it was brilliant. Neville fell off his broom and broke his wrist, and then Malfoy grabbed the Remembrall. Harry tried to make him give it back, but Malfoy flew up and Harry followed, and then caught the thing in a fifty-foot dive without falling!”

“Wow.” She breathed.

“…he has.” Weasley said, spinning around. “I’m his second, who’s yours?”

“Crabbe. Midnight all right? We’ll meet you in the trophy room; that’s always unlocked.” Then Draco nodded his head at her and stalked off.

Charlotte thought about asking, then decided against it. “Harry, try to stay out of trouble.” She advised, giving her cousin a hug before going to the Ravenclaw table.

“Seamus is looking over here at you.” Isobel said, smiling.

Charlotte glanced back to see the clear blue eyes of the Irish wizard. She grinned at him and proceeded to enjoy her food. But, then, “Excuse me.”

She heard Hermione talking to Harry and Weasley. “Can’t a person eat in peace in this place?” Weasley grumbled.

It took all of Charlotte’s self-restraint to keep from hexing him. “I couldn’t help overhearing what you and Malfoy were saying and you mustn’t go wandering around the school at night. Think of the points you’ll lose Gryffindor if you’re caught, and you’re bound to be. It’s really very selfish of you.”

“And it’s really none of your business.” Harry retorted.

Charlotte shot him a look. “Hello, Hermione.”

“Oh, hello, Charli.” Hermione smiled brightly before she moved on to sit by herself.

Charlotte made a vow that the next time someone was mean to Hermione, she was going to hex them, no matter who it was. However, the rest of the evening passed quietly. She, Isobel, Terry, and Lisa worked on their homework together, with Merlin curled up in her lap.

The next morning, however, there was a long, thin package delivered to Harry, and Charlotte, curious, read the letter attached over his shoulder. “Harry, what did you do?” She breathed, slightly jealous.

“Long story short, I’m on the Quidditch team. I’ll explain later, okay?” He grinned, rushing out of the Great Hall.

She sat back down as another explosion echoed in the Great Hall. Seamus, with soot on his face, shrugged apologetically and started cleaning. Charlotte laughed and walked over to help him. “Thanks again.” He said sheepishly.

“You’re welcome, Seamus.” Then, she went back to her table to finish breakfast.

During her next Charms class, Seamus slid into the seat beside her and she finally mastered the Softening Charm near the end of class. He high-fived her. “Nice work, Char.”

“Thanks. You too.” She added as he managed the charm.

“At least I didn’t explode it, huh?”

She laughed. “True enough. I think tonight we should get together. After dinner, perhaps?”

He nodded. “I’ll tell Dean.”


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