A Very Magical Day
Elizabeth woke up, for some reason today seemed very special, but she just couldn’t place her finger on why.
“Meow!” said Guinevere hopping up onto the bed.
“Good morning to you too Gwen,” she muttered stroking her between the ears.
“Do you know what today is?” she whispered.
Guinevere shook her head.
“It’s my birthday!”
Guinevere purred softly as she tickled him between the ears.
“Don’t tell Uncle Remus and Grandpa though, they might have forgotten my birthday.”
She hopped out of bed and got dressed in a new pair of jeans and a light pink t-shirt.
She brushed her hair into a half up and looked out the window.
It was the most beautiful day that she had ever seen, the sun was shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.
“Morning Cariad,” beamed Lyall as she came down the stairs.
“Morning Grandpa,” she said giving him a hug.
“You hungry?” he asked as he served the breakfast.
“I am actually yes,” she nodded.
“How is everyone this fine day?” asked Remus sitting down next to Elizabeth having given her a kiss on the head.
Elizabeth had already tucked into her sausages and scrambled eggs ravenously.
“Hungry clearly,” said Remus impressed.
For the first time since Elizabeth had come home, she actually finished off a meal that wasn’t ice cream.
“So Cariad what are you going to do today?”
“Well its such a beautiful day I want to draw,” she beamed.
“Is it ok if I go to the top of the hill to draw?”
“Of course, sweetheart,” beamed Remus, “but be back in time for dinner.”
“Ok,” she beamed skipping out of the house with some parchment and a pencil.
It seemed as if Remus and Lyall had forgotten that today was her birthday, but that didn’t matter. She was so happy at her new home that she didn’t mind not celebrating her birthday.
“Good morning sheep,” said Elizabeth curtsying slightly, “do you mind if I share your beautiful hill today?”
Elizabeth sat down in the grass and began to draw. Yesterday she had been reading her new book on Shakespeare and had read a Midsummer Night’s Dream and Romeo and Juliet.
She drew pictures of the beautiful fairies and the mischievous Puck. She also drew a picture of Juliet hanging out of a tower window and Romeo calling up to her.
She was halfway through drawing another picture which was of Titania flirting with Bottom who had donkey’s head when she saw Remus coming up the hill.
“You ok sweetheart?” asked Remus sitting down next to her.
“Hmmm,” she nodded as she drew Titania’s flower crown.
“It’s half-past five,” he pointed out, “you’ve been up here all day!”
She started to gather all the pieces of parchment with the drawings.
“You really are quite a talented young lady you know,” said Remus as he looked at the drawing of Romeo and Juliet.
“They’re nothing,” she shrugged as she started skipping back down the hill to the house.
When she got into the house there was a vase of flowers on the kitchen table.
“Where’s Grandpa?” she asked as she sniffed the flowers.
“Why don’t you go take a look in the sitting room,” said Remus trying not to laugh.
She went through to the sitting room where there was a banner strung which read, Happy Birthday Beth.
Not only Grandpa was in there but all four of the Macmillan’s.
She stared around the room in shock, she had never had a birthday party before, nobody had ever remembered her birthday before.
“Happy Birthday!” yelled Tim running over to give her a hug.
“Thank you,” she said giving him a hug.
“I thought you’d all forgotten,” she muttered tears coming to her eyes.
“Forget,” said Remus putting his hands on her shoulders, “how could we ever forgot your birthday.”
“Happy birthday Cariad,” said Lyall placing a crown of wildflowers in her hair.
“Every birthday princess needs a crown,” he whispered kissing her on the forehead.
“Thank you,” she giggled curtsying to him.
Lyall gave her a deep bow in return.
“I still can't believe all of this is for me,” she stammered, “I’ve never had a birthday party before, I’ve had a birthday anything.”
“No birthdays?” asked Ernie his eyes wide in disbelief.
“Nope,” she said shaking her head.
“No birthday presents?” asked Tim, “no cake? No party?”
“No,” said Elizabeth laughing slightly.
“Well actually that’s not strictly true,” Remus interjected, “you did have a party for your first birthday, but you don’t remember it.”
“Sounds like we’ve got ten birthdays to make up for,” chuckled Mr Macmillan.
“Ok Cariad,” said Lyall, “does our birthday princess want to open her presents?”
“I’ve got presents?” she breathed.
“Of course, you’ve got presents,” said Mrs Macmillan, “it’s your birthday dear.”
It was then that Elizabeth noticed the huge pile of presents in the corner of the room.
“I want to go first!” said Tim passing her a small lumpy parcel.
“I wrapped it myself,” he said proudly.
“I can see that,” said Elizabeth kneeling down, “and you did a wonderful job.”
She carefully unwrapped the parcel and found a homemade card which had a cat and an owl on the front and a stuffed toy cat.
“Let’s hope that Queen Guinevere isn’t jealous,” chuckled Remus looking at the cat.
“Or maybe she’ll just enjoy trying to order it around imperiously,” suggested Lyall.
“It’s perfect,” said Elizabeth giving Tim a hug, “I love it!”
Ernie then passed her another present which seemed to be much better wrapped.
She carefully took the paper off the present and found a book.
“Magic and Mystery,” she read off the cover, “tales of Merlin.”
“It’s the magical version of Merlin, the real version instead of the muggle legend.”
“Thank you,” she said giving him a hug, “I can’t wait to read it!”
“I know that, that’s why I bought it,” he smirked.
“This is from me and George,” said Mrs Macmillan passing her a small box.
She undid the ribbon and opened the box to find a necklace with a heart. The heart seemed to be clear, but it glowed bright blue mysteriously in the middle.
“That is called a moonstone,” said Mrs Macmillan putting the necklace on her, “some muggles believe them to be magical, but their beauty is actually completely natural.”
“It’s beautiful,” she breathed.
“I’m glad you like it,” chuckled Mr Macmillan.
Elizabeth noticed then that there was still at least a dozen presents left to be unwrapped.
“You should open these first,” said Remus passing her a few parcels.
“I love books,” he said, “and I know you’ve already read the books you bought the other day, so I got you some more.”
The book on top of the pile was a hardback book The Chronicles of Narnia.
“I know you enjoyed the Magicians Nephew, but there’s actually six more books in the series.”
“Thank you,” she said flicking through the book.
“There’s more presents,” Tim pointed out.
“Oh right,” she muttered opening more of them.
She found an old leather-bound book where the pages were starting to yellow.
“Little Women and Good Wives,” she read tracing the letters off the cover.
“It was Lily’s,” said Remus, “she used to read it at school, it was one of her favourites.”
She carefully opened the book and the flyleaf there was writing in a handwriting quite similar to her own.
Lily Jane Evans, Gryffindor Tower, Hogwarts School
“She lent it to my Mum a few weeks before she died,” said Remus, “that’s why it didn’t burn in the fire, from what I remember there is a girl in there called Beth.”
Elizabeth was beyond words, she dropped the book and threw herself in for a hug.
“Woah there little one,” he chuckled, patting her on the back.
“Thank you, Uncle Remus,” she whispered tears running down her cheeks.
“That’s ok,” he said, “I’m glad you like it.”
Elizabeth went back over to her presents and carefully placed the book on top of the pile.
There was still one more book and it was the largest parcel yet.
She looked down at the huge book and traced the picture on the cover of the Lady of the Lake with Excalibur.
“I noticed you looking at it in the bookshop last week,” said Remus, “so I knew you wanted it.”
“It’s perfect,” she beamed.
“This is the last one from me,” said Remus, “I’m afraid it’s not much.”
He passed her a parcel which contained a scrapbook.
She opened it and saw that it was full of moving photographs of Lily and James. A lot of the photos were of James, Remus, and two other young boys, one had curly dark hair and the other had mousy brown.
A few of the photos were of Lily, one of them even had Aunt Petunia who only looked about ten and was smiling of all things, hugging her little sister.
“I wrote around and got some photos but most of them are my own.”
“Who are the other two boys?”
“Those were our friends at school, Sirius Black and Peter Pettigrew.”
“Where are they now?” she asked.
“Peter is dead,” sighed Remus, “and Sirius and I are no longer friends.”
“Why?” she asked.
“I’ll tell you another time,” said Remus “but as for now there’s still more presents to open.”
Elizabeth shrugged and pulled out another present. The adults in the room all shared significant looks, Elizabeth would find out the truth about Sirius, but today was not the time.
“Ok open that one last,” said Lyall pointing to the largest box.
“Ok,” she said picking up one of the other’s.
She opened the parcel and found a stack of sketchbooks with crisp card for drawing on.
“I thought you should stop drawing on scrap paper and parchment,” said Lyall, “you are a very talented young lady Cariad.”
“Thank you,” she beamed stroking the soft white paper.
He then passed her another parcel.
This one contained a large box of coloured pencils in every colour imaginable and a set of watercolor paints.
“If your drawings seem to come to life in black and white imagine how wonderful they could be in color!”
Elizabeth was looking at all the different pencils, there had to be a hundred different colors!
“They’re beautiful,” she breathed.
“There’s still the big box!” pointed out Tim.
“You’re right young Tim,” said Lyall passing over the largest present.
She unwrapped it and found a large cardboard box. She lifted the lid of the box and found at least two dozen videotapes, including several Disney films such as Robin Hood, Beauty and the Beast, Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Alice in Wonderland and a live action adaption of The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.
Elizabeth picked up the tape for The Sword in the Stone and looked at it longingly. But then got confused.
“We don’t have a television though,” she muttered, “let alone a video player.”
“That is where you are wrong young princess,” said Lyall as and Remus got up and went through to the other room.
They carried the television in together and plugged it and the video player in.
“You’re lucky Hope was a muggle,” said Lyall as he knelt down to plug it in, “so we already have electricity.”
“What’s that?” asked Mr Macmillan as the three children crowded around it.
“It’s called a television George,” Remus explained, “it’s a muggle box that they use for watching things.”
“Strange,” he muttered shaking his head.
“Can we watch one of the films?” asked Elizabeth excitedly.
“And here was I thinking you’d want your birthday tea!” said Lyall.
“Can we watch a film after tea then?”
“Of course princess,” beamed Lyall.
Mrs Macmillan helped Remus bring through a large dish of sandwiches and crudites which everyone dove into.
The best part came next though.
“Cake!” yelled Tim.
“And ice cream!” laughed Ernie and Elizabeth.
The birthday cake had chocolate frosting and was served with strawberry ice cream.
“I never knew birthdays could be so much fun,” she giggled as she ate some cake and ice cream.
“That’s because you’ve had a proper one before,” explained Mr Macmillan.
After cake, they cleared away the plates and the adults settled onto the sofa whilst Elizabeth set up the video tape, she wanted to watch The Sword in the Stone first.
Tim sat between his parents on the sofa and Ernie and Elizabeth both sat on cushions on the floor watching excitedly waiting for the film to start.
The film was better than she had expected, she had always wanted to watch a video, but she had never been allowed to.
At the end of the film then the Macmillan’s headed home and Elizabeth headed up to her room.
She had just had one of the best days of her life, the only day that might have been better was being collected from the Dursleys a week ago.