|Scene Title||1994 Sorting and Feast|
|Synopsis||The sorting of First Years, and the feast. Also, mention of the Triwizard tournament and the changes related to the other schools protests.|
|Date||Sep 01 1994|
|Watch For||Food, Fun, and TROLL HEAD!!!|
Full of aureate light and gilded gleam, the Great Hall of Hogwarts is both strange and splendid. Thousands and thousands of white taper candles float in midair, their inextinguishable flames casting dancing light down over four long tables, laid with glittering golden plates and goblets. Were one to stand at the door looking in, members of Slytherin house would be seated at the far left, followed by Hufflepuff, Gryffindor, and then Ravenclaw along the right wall. At the top of the hall is another long table for the teachers, perpendicular to the House tables. Set along the wall beside the head table, an unobtrusive doorway leads to a much smaller room. The appearance of the ceiling above varies with the weather and time of day, as it has been bewitched to look like the sky outside. Most would agree that the effect is startlingly realistic, making the Great Hall seem to simple open on to the heavens.
As they enter the Great Hall, Perpetua pinches her little brother, hard. "That's for telling mum earlier about Mr. Skitters," she hisses at Egbert before moving past him to sit with her own year at the Hufflepuff table. Egbert lets out a squeal that turns into a cry as he rubs his arm and puts out his tongue at Perpetua as she passes.
The long hem of her robes brushes against the stone floor as a pair of black mary janes walk into the Great Hall, a pair of sapphire blue eyes looking up over the huge, candlelit room as students gather at their tables. Zarina reaches up and brushes her slender fingers through her long, snow white hair, brushing her hair from her face as she walks to the Slytherin table, lowering herself in the middle of the long bench as her legs cross habitually.
Mei comes in right behind Zarina, moving over to the Hufflepuff table. After sitting, she fidgets with her hair, trying to get it back into its bun. It takes her several minutes to get it just how she wants it before settling in to listen to whatever conversation may surround her.
Up at the staff's table, there's an empty seat, as if kept open for someone. It's the usual routine of the past couple of years. As per usual, Professor Trelawney isn't to be seen at the feast. Sprout beams proudly at her returning Hufflepuffs while Flitwick is conversing with Sinistra.
And here we are at the start of another year. Ophelia pretty much just breezes on in, nothing special. She makes her way over to the Ravenclaw table and finding a seat. Only then does she take the time to glance around for familiar, and friendly, faces.
Braeden passes through amidst the milling students, making his way towards the Gryffindor table with a broad smile painting his face for the sight. "I have a feeling this is going to be a good year." The words were said to one of the students there before grabbing him by the shoulder and adding something quietly that causes both of them to grin as they glance mischievously towards the door where the new first years would come through. Afterwards, he passes over and takes a seat while conversing with his fellow students.
Second pair of robes and school uniform freshly removed from his belongings and switched into, Stephen St. Claire steps purposefully into the Great Hall. In a balance act learned from years of riding the young Slytherin's shoulder, his cat Charon looks around at the Great Hall, licking its chops in anticipating of the Sorting Feast, where he would be passed all manner of delectable table scraps. He takes his place amongst the Fifth Year Slytherins at their House table, glancing up at the empty seat at the staff dining table and then looking over the Hall itself. "Start of another year, eh cat?", he says lightly, reaching up to scratching the cat beneath the chin.
At the head table with the rest of the teachers, Professor Albus Dumbledore has a pleasant expression on his face as he watches the older students filter in from the carriages bringing them to the doors to the school. Something a bit unusual from most years is a rather tall and ornate golden tower, tall as Hagrid but only a third as wide. The tower rests between his golden owl-shaped podium his chair at the high table. The aging headmaster seems much at his ease as he ever does, although there's a mild hooded expression in his eyes as he observes the students quietly, waiting for Hagrid to return and also Professor McGonagall.
Perpetua rolls her eyes as she settles into conversing with some of her fellow sixth years. It's almost as if they haven't been away for a whole summer, how easy the routine comes back. Even when it's filled with a few months' worth of gossip!
Cullen is here to join the Hufflepuffs, the boy scurrying along into the hall along with the rest of the students. He's dressed more properly, attired in uniform, making beeline over toward the Hufflepuff tables. He's joined by several others, small group that finds a place and clusters there, all settling and chattering back and forth.
The tables are filling up fast with returning students of each House. And each table seems to have it's own chatter going on, even Slytherin which can sometimes be quiet and reserved as if they were planning something. On all the tables rests standard dinnerware. Plate, goblet, utensils. But no food yet.
Stepping into the Great Hall with a heavy thud is Hagrid, who appears to have tried to do his best at dressing up for the ceremony. Even his beard looks combed. "Sorry, Professor." he says, his voice echoing in the hall. "Had a little accident out on the lake with the giant squid. All's fine though." he adds, as he makes his way towards the head table. "Oh, and Professor McGonagall should be along with the first years in a moment." The last is added as he takes his own seat at the table.
A perky redhead can be heard by the sounds of an alto recorder before she comes into the Great Hall, a sprightly dancy marching tune as Kyrie hops into the Great Hall along with a couple of her fellow Ravenclaws, the others singing nonsense words along with the tune. When they get to free spots at their table, the recorder is put away with a flourish, the fourth year settling in and checking the hallway for the first-years to come in.
Over at the Ravenclaws, Cho sighs softly as she looks around and catches up with old friends. She mutters a few things under her breath as she runs her fingers through her hair before looking over towards the front, waiting for the first years come in.
Settled in her seat, Zarina glances up at the other tables every once in a while in mild curiosity, the exciting chatter of the students filling the air as they meet each other for the first time since summer. Her own table of no exception, the words exchanged within her year, sneering proudly before murmuring their comments to one another. She lifts a brow lightly, ignoring them for the most part as her bright sapphire blue eyes look up curiously at the large pillar that seems to demand attention. When Hagrid appears, her eyes only linger on him for a moment, glancing back to the Professor as he seems to light up the Hall with his smile.
Mei just sits, quietly waiting on the firsties. In fact it's almost as though she's looking for one. If Zarina looks her way, the girl would wave and then grin at some shared joke.
Having been sitting with the Hufflepuffs for some time, Amber greets her Housemates as they arrive. Don't tell anyone, but she's got a rat in the hood of her yellow-lined Hogwarts robes, who is eagerly anticipating the start of the feast!
Stephen is continue to pamper his cat and engage in idle conversation with his fellow 5th Years at the Slytherin table when his roaming gaze sees Cho over at the Ravenclaw table. He smiles almost predatory as he puffs his chest outward to show off his Prefect badge. A couple of the other 5th Years look over to see Cho and what Stephen is doing, and there is a bit of quiet laughter at the Slytherin table.
"I nearly got away with it too, but Egbert let mum know that I was sneaking my new rat to school too," Perpetua says in a mildly resentful tone to anyone at Hufflepuff who cares to listen. "So I had to make a choice, and I decided to bring the rat. Mum's sitting my uncle's kneazle and he stubbornly just won't stop trying to eat my rat… Amber!" She says, half rising off her bench and waving to the younger student.
Ophelia turns away from her quiet listening to everyone else chatter as Hagrid comes in. Tapping a finger against her lips (which are unfortunately bare of color, as are her nails) she turns her attention back to her immediate surroundings.
Braeden looks between a few of his fellow Gryffindor students, that smile muted just a bit as they exchange a few words. It seemed they were having an in-depth conversation over something though it soon ends when he raises his hand to motion towards the golden pillar on the stage. It seemed they were trying to figure out exactly what it was. He shrugs and they continue onward into the chatter they'd started. Every so often his attention drifts upward towards the Slytherin table though, glancing with a faint hint of paranoia before shaking his head when Hagrid enters. That grin only broadens to the sight of the half-giant, a hand raised as if to greet him.
Zarina arches a brow, calmly listening to the dull roar of chatting as she looks over the other tables, her attention soon pulled to the Hufflepuff table where Mei is waving to her with a knowing grin. The brow quirks, the smirk growing on her full lips as she shakes her head, glancing to the doors where the first year students will enter soon enough. With the joke shared between them, she just chuckles, the Slytherin looking up to the other tables before noticing the suspicious glances from the Gryffindor table. She arches a brow at that, a slender hand lifting enough to tuck a lock of snow white hair behind her ear before the smirk reappears on her full lips, winking once at them before chuckling to herself.
Dumbledore nods to Hagrid and glances up at the bewitched ceiling to check on the weather, leaning over to catch a bit of the conversation from the other teachers. "Oh, he's on his way," he says reassuringly, his eyes flicking over the near-traditional empty chair.
Oh what'st his? A puffyproud Slytherin? Ophelia giggles a bit to herself, then lifts her hands to wiggle her fingers at him. OH hello there, Stephen~ She seems amused.
The other Faculty members close to Dumbledore nod. Sinistra appears to have reservations about the appointment. Flitwick states quite merrily, "If he said he would take the post, then we share your confidence. /All/ of us."
The wiggling fingers from the Ravenclaw table catch Stephen's attention and he looks over to see Ophelia waving at him. He nods his head politely back at her before giving up on annoying Cho Chang for the moment and conversing with his housemates. The golden tower-like thing in the Great Hall has not escaped his attention, but all things in due time.
Over at the Gryffindor table, there's some loud whispering and pointing down the table at three empty plates in a row. "Wonder where Potter is?" one asks, while another 3rd year girl rolls her eyes. "I heard that the Death Eaters took him hostage when they attacked Diagon Alley." she says, prompting a 6th year to frown. "That's rubbish. The Prophet's never accurate in it's reports." he says, glancing up towards the head table at the empty spot.
Cullen seems content to chatter amongst his little cluster of friends, hands rising, wagging back and forth. They indicate this and that, occasionally pointing at tables across, waving or making gestures to faces familiar. Cullen does make some acknowledgment toward others, leaning across his perch to shake hand toward a few distant figures, familiar shapes like Amber, Mei, Ashley. Then back to raucous chatter with those nearby.
Ashley sits very far down the Hufflepuff table, on the farthest end closest to the Sorting Hat. It's much easier to help the newly sorted first years to their dorm if he can get them seated all near him, and is much easier to wave them over from here. He does occasionally look down the table at his Housemates, giving them all warm smiles.
Braeden rolls his eyes when the rest of the table starts pointing in wonder. He just shakes his head at them and says quite pointedly, "You know. Since when has that Potter kid ever managed to make it to the Sorting Feast. Once? I wouldn't worry about it." He glances up at the empty spot though with a hint of musing. It seemed that even he was wondering exactly if what the lot of them was true or not. "Prophet or no prophet, whether it's true or not will come in time. Wait and we'll see if the lot of them make their late entrance per the usual." The wink that the Slytherin gave the lot of them though not moments earlier is met with a raised brow though nothing more is done upon it.
Ophelia giggles audibly this time, her hand lifting up to try to cover it, at Stephen's reaction. Okay, her next few minutes have been made.
Perpetua gets up from her current spot to move down closer to Amber, since she's kind of appointed herself a 'big sister' for the younger student. Also, they have to talk about /rats/.
Kyrie doesn't seem to be too interested in gossip about famous Gryffindors, instead talking about musical theory with the two kids nearest her, being very derisive of a rather popular wizarding band has having awful technique and the fact that they seem to have ripped of the Muggle Tchaikovsky like most modern Muggle rock bands. That and Pachelbel's Canon. "That song drives me mad. I'd hate to have to play cello for it, I'd fall asleep waiting for it to bloody well end. That guy was the original one-hit wonder."
When Perpetua makes her way down to Amber's general area, the younger student finally notices. To her credit, there are a lot of people in the hall, so it's hard to see when someone waves or says hello or whatnot if they aren't in close proximity to you - or you aren't looking right at them. "Hey," she says. "Exciting, huh? Newbie in the House n' all. Can't wait. I love the First-Years." It's like reliving her own magical experience through them. The wonder in their eyes just can't be compared to anything.
Mei grins ear to ear when she sees Rupert. Building on an earlier joke she waves at the boy and even makes a cute kissing motion at him before leaning in to whisper conspirtously to one of the other girls at her table.
"The first years just get cuter and cuter don't they? So /tiny!/," Perpetua all but squeals girlishly about it. Settling into the bench, and by proxy, pushing another fourth year down just a little, she turns to give Amber her attention. "Is that River poking his widdle nose out there?"
Julian's eyes are immediately drawn to the ceiling. He walks with the group, but easily keeps his eyes on the enchanted sky. He almost expects to feel the elements. He remains composed, though, having had his moment of weakness already.
Nestor slinked in as surreptitiously as he could, the little round boy shuffled inside with a wide-eyed look about him, a young adolescent with curly brown hair, fat thumbs twiddling as he stared upwards, bumping into a few chairs as he walked.
This being the first impression the first-years have of the Hogwarts quite mad Headmaster, Dumbledore turns his attention to the great doors and resumes his beatific smile of welcome as they start filtering in, although the tall and ornate golden tower between the high table and his owl-shaped podium kind of obscures the view.
Zarina lifts a brow as she watches the first year students enter in a single file, their eyes wide with wonder all around them. The corner of her full lips tugs into a light smirk as she rests the side of her cheek in her hand, propping an elbow on the table as she watches with some amusement as the smaller students walk in
Sorrel takes it all in with keen eyes as she files into the Great Hall, stumbling slightly on the hem of her new robes as she hasn't a glance to spare for where her feet are going. It's only a momentary thing and she's quickly back in what passes as step with the other firsties.
Melissa looks up along with the others, then looks around at the crowds. She gives a wave to Cho when she spots her.
Jackson's gasp is audible as he enters the hall with the rest of the first years. His head tilts back to look up at the ceiling, awed. "Oh, wow!" He nearly bumps into the person in line in front of him, transfixed as he is by the starry scene above.
Rupert looks nervously about as he enters the Great Hall. At first, his gaze is drawn to the floating candles and the sky above them. When he nearly collides with Julian as a result of his upward focus, however, he quickly decides on a new tactic. Licking his lips nervously, he glances about the myriad other students assembled and, as fortune would have it, his eyes light on Mei just as she is making her kissing motion. His face flushes a tremendous shade of red and for a moment his steps falter…only resuming with a sharp poke from the student behind him.
Nestor turns about to Jackson and shushes him quickly, "We don't want to get in trouble!"
Oswald moves on in behind the other students, keeping to himself for the time being since no need to waste words with others. His hands folded inside his robe and trying to keep a appearances up.
Oh goody, the firsties! Ophelia leans a bit to try to get a good look at them. A whisper to those near her inquires how many new Housemembers they might get this year.
"You're just gettin' older," Amber says with her light Welsh accent, smirking a bit. Looking over her shoulder, Amber spies her own rat out of the corner of her eye. "Yep! But River's a gel. I know — River Phoenix n' all, but I liked th'name." Her attention falls to the entering first-years and the old transfiguration professor, the latter of which gets a nod. "I need t'talk t'her. Got somethin' that needs askin'. I'm hopin' she'll help me out a wee bit."
Stephen turns his attention to the first years as they walk into the Great Hall, remembering when it was himself walking through those enormous doors when he notices one of them with a pair of lipstick lips planting on his cheek. He notices Mei taunting the boy and rolls his eyes. He looks over each of them carefully, wondering which of them would be joining the noble House of Slytherin.
Clapping her hands to her mouth, Perpetua suppresses another annoying giggle. It's hard to help, the firsties are just too darling. Amber's given a playful nudge with the elbow for her comment about getting older. As to the reference of the rat's name. "Huh. River Phoenix.. what Quidditch team does he play for? OH! Speaking of transfiguration, I didn't do well enough to progress to NEWTs in it. /Or/ potions. I could have cried with happy."
Kyrie cranes her neck around, breaking off her commentary about music to stare at the first-years as they come in, tucking a strand of red hair behind a pointed ear. Yep, properly pointed like an elf, but given this is Hogwarts, this doesn't stick out very much. She gives the kids a smile, showing off her dimples, then she hears someone say her surname. "Who said that?" she queries, looking over Amber-wards as the source of the namedrop.
Braeden smirks as he catches sight of the young man flushing red before following his line of sight towards Mei. He elbows one of the students next to him after that before leaning in and whispering to him with a pointed gesture to the young man that's soon followed by a very few others around them. Laughter could be heard afterward though it dies down with the mirth that drifts about the table to the new year. Glances are cast towards the empty plates by a few of the other students and rumors abound but even with that, it seemed they were enjoying themselves.
Jackson's cheeks flush deep red at Nestor's reprimand, his nose crinkling apologetically. "But —" he begins, and then claps a hand over his mouth. He still shifts restlessly in place, bouncing slightly from heel to toe, eyes still fixed upwards for a while before he tears them away to examine the rest of the room. His gaze skips from table to table, passing over Slytherin and Gryffindor but lingering contemplatively on the students from the other two Houses.
There's so much room in here. In this whole place. Julian could get lost, or hide or whatever he needed to do in this room alone. He notices the old man on the highest chair. He gives him his best 'cheerful little kid' smile, and then purses his lips for a moment as he thinks about the situation. Shifting his weight to his other foot, he waits for whatever happens next. He's still nervous that this initiation ritual is going to hurt. No matter how many assurances he's had.
Mei just sits forward, resting her head in her hands with her elbow on the table. The girl looks particularly happy, but then again doesn't she always?
Nestor whispers to himself, "What have I gotten myself into?" He stuffs his hands into his pockets and follows the line, eyes scanning the robed students. What did all the colors mean? A pug nose wrinkled and he watched the impending doom of the head table. Were they going to have to make a speech?!
The silence befalling the miniature troops behind her brings some measure of contentment to Minerva's features, away from visibility. That is, up until the little army of black robes and little faces pries through the doors of the Hall and spills forth like many little goslings right behind a tall, swooping mother goose. Professor McGonagall steps swiftly, turning as if on air once she reaches the uprising step ahead. Folding her hands within the depths of her sleeves, Minerva stands a pace back, drawing from her left arm's cover a scroll; her eyes behind those little panes of glass tilt sidelong to a single stool, whereupon sits a rather plain old hat, patched in many places and resewn in others. For all intensive purposes, the brown headpiece simply appears to be something one might be lucky to find in the back of an old auntie's closet.
The difference being, that somehow, in those moments of silence from the deputy headmistress, the worn hat carries with it an air of dignity(if a piece of clothing could possess any lasting volume) despite its current and ragged state.
And finally, the Sorting Hat speaks.
The Sorting Hat begins to sing…
I'm just made of cloth
To sit upon your heads
Made back when the school was new
Now old and tattered threads
My task is simple, you see:
To sort you every one
You'll find the best place to learn and grow
When my song is done
Perhaps that place is Gryffindor:
Those daring, brave and bold.
Or perhaps it's Slytherin:
Where wiles and cunning their sway hold
Then, it could be in Hufflepuff:
Loyal, trusting and true
Or lastly in Ravenclaw:
Those giving scholarship its due.
Each house has strengths all their own
Each, pitfalls to evade
Grow strong and learn together, all,
And you will have it made.
The Sorting Hat falls silent again.
Nestor suddenly begins to clap… then falls silent, coughing nervously.
Amber rolls her eyes, shaking her head as she idly plays with a shiny fork on the table. "The newness'll wear off, 'ventually," Amber says. "Soon's they take a class with Professor Snape, I think, they won't be so cute anymore. Half of 'em'll be comin' back to the dorms with boils n' pink spots."
For a moment, she thinks Perpetua is joking about the Quidditch thing, and actually laughs. Then she remembers that not all students have experience with Muggles. "He was n' actor. Died about this time last year — sad, if y'ask me. He was cute."
Who said what? With everyone talking, it's hard to tell who Kyrie's talking to. Amber does glance in the other student's direction, though. Back to Perpetua, she comments, "Good song this year, wot?"
Zarina smirks lightly to herself as she watches the first year students only seem to get more nervous as they wait for the Sorting to begin. She chuckles softly to herself, absently reaching up to tuck a lock of long white hair behind her ear as she pulls her attention from him. Looking up at the large pillar, she gives it another odd glance, her sapphire eyes narrowing slightly at she looks over it as carefully as she can from her seat. Her eyes blink in surprise, sing Professor McGonagall stepping quickly as a old hat starts to sing its song. Every year being new, as if it takes the entire year to make a unique song.
Perpetua falls silent as the firsties reach the front of the room with McGonagall at the lead. She blinks though and looks back at Amber. "Oh, one of those muggle actors then? You got any pictures?" She's then quiet once more for the Sorting Hat's song, and claps loudly when it's finished. Looking back to Amber she grins, "That hat always has something good to sing."
Melissa listens with interest to the singing hat. "That was neat! So that's the test… the hat?" She smiles. This was definitely going to be a fun school…
Julian is dumbfounded. The hat is talking. He listens to the words the thing says, explaining about the different houses. Oh. So there are the qualities the teacher was talking about. Ok. He smirks to himself, the expression showing on his face for a moment. He has a feeling he knows where he'll go, but he's not sure. He turns his attention toward Professor McGonnagal and waits for her to start to call names. "As long as it doesn't suck our brains out," he whispers. He's heard plenty of Muggle 'ghost stories.'
Oswald says "Interesting…" as he listens to the hat sing it song with a eyebrow raised then turns his attention to other parts of the great hall after hearing its song.
Ophelia closes her eyes and bobs her head faintly in time with the song. Always a treat, that. She opens her eyes once it's quiet again, and looks towards the front. "Should be interestin'," she murmurs to herself, her hand lifting to rest underneath her chin, her elbow on the surface of the table.
The resident music geek amongst the Ravenclaws cheers the Sorting Hat's song. Kyrie's clapping is rather enthusiastic, and there's high praise from the girl. "Great enunciation and phrasing!" she enthuses with a beaming face. "Better timbre to the octaves and not a missed breath anywhere." Although now it means that Professor McGonagall's about to start calling names, so the Ravenclaw girl duly silences herself and listens attentively, leaning away from the table slightly to get a better look at the firsties, sizing them up and visibly wondering which they'll get.
Cullen cranes his head upwards when the hat begins to sing, peeking over head and around faces, taking sweeping glance over the line of firsties. The boy smiles, nudges and gestures his companions toward it. "This good," He mentions, "About half of them think it'll eat their head." Sage nod follows, and then small argument about that fact in question.
Mei just lets the song wash over her. Though she speaks fluent English, it's still not without its issues. So, in cases like this she just opts to enjoy the sound and not worry if she doesn't understand all the words.
Sorrel's eyebrows go up as the hat starts to speak, though she isn't quite so shocked by it as some of her Muggle-born peers. Still, it's pretty neat! She listens rather intently to what it has to say, making mental notes since she doesn't have her notebook with her here. She bounces slightly on the balls of her feet, trying to peer over those in front of her to see what exactly is going to happen next.
Jackson seems to be entranced all over again with each new surprise at this school, and he listens to the Sorting Hat's song with rapt attention. He chews on his lip afterwards, gaze skipping again from table to table now that the song is done. His attention lingers longest this time on Hufflepuff, thoughtful.
Amber says, "No' with me, no. Usually don't carry pictures of all th'actors I like." Maybe she should. Might help explain things a little better. "I'll owl me mum. She'll get on the internet n' print one out, I bet!" The Internet, being hard to explain, is waved off by Amber. "That's a … box where we get photos from."
"Any'ow…" She taps her fork on the plate instead of clapping. The sound is nicer. "I think they're gonna start sortin' soon.""
From the Gryffindor table there is a bit of loud applause from two people in particular. "Bravo Hat!!" Fred grins, nudging George beside him who quickly pipes up. "Best song so far!"
Mei looks at Fred and George, muttering something under her breath in Chinese. It doesn't sound nice…or impressed. Then again, who knows what she's saying in that stupid language of hers.
"Huh? What are you talking about? I honestly can't tell when you're making things up or not about what you muggles have at home!" Perpetua says with the air of one who's honestly unsure. "A box that you get photos from? But isn't that a camera?" Turning her puzzled expression from Amber, she grins over at the firsties, and wriggles her fingers in a hello at any looking towards the Hufflepuffs.
Ashley watches the Hat sing its song with.. a slight boredom on his face? True, he's heard it many times. And while different every year, some of the appeal gets.. lost. He turns his attention back to the lined up first years, and seems much more interested.
The laughter from the Gryffindor table makes Rupert blush even more fiercely and he sucks in a lungful of air as if he might have something to say to those laughing, older students or not! Before anything can come out, though, the hat sings and the air wooshes silently out once more, devoid of words, wonder replacing the embarrassment on the boy's face. His fingers twiddle with the hem of his sweater.
Nestor is glad to see he's not the ONLY one cheering, and begins to clap loudly again, looking around at the throng of students and back to the hat. "I hope I become a Gryphinpuff!"
Kyrie's enthusiasm catches Ophelia's attention. Before she can say anything though, the Weasleys decide to make themselves known. A roll of her eyes and a shake of her head. "Every year." There's a 'tsk' after it.
Stephen looks at the Weasley brothers with no small amount of contempt. Not only are they Gryffindors, but they're LOUD. Not to mention the fact that they are Weasleys. The only good Weasley is a quiet one that isn't around so you don't have to look at them. Anyways.
If the awe and magic of the Sorting Ceremony has lost a bit of its magic for Ashley, Stephen only liked it the first time because it meant he could finally start using magic.
Jackson grins brightly at the wave from Perpetua. He lifts a hand to wriggle his fingers in a return wave, cheerful and excited. He laughs softly at Nestor's exclamation, though it isn't a mocking sound. "I wonder what the Gryffinpuff emblem would look like."
Oswald takes a deep breath and lets it out a bit annoyed at the silliness of Fred and George. He mutters something under his breath about the maturity of the old students.
Braeden grins at the Weasleys but kicks back in his seat nonetheless, seeming truly amused by the two's antics whether or not they were being a bit loud over the lot of it. His arms fold over his chest though, going quiet amidst the applause as he studies the first years with a soft hum on his lips. "Let's see who goes where then. Wonder who we'll get this year." He seems to become rather introverted after that, an odd quality for a Gryffindor.
One day, Amber will introduce Perpetua to the computer. Sure, the online world is mostly limited at the moment, but you still need a helmet and a flame suit to visit it. Over the next decade, it will become a monster that will EAT EVERYTHING EVER or something. "Trust me, it's awesome," she says to Perpetua. She might even get a good idea of what Mister Phoenix looks like, despite the streaky quality of dot matrix printers.
Melissa looks over to the Gryffindors. "Oh… those must be Ginny's brothers…
Zarina arches a white brow at the roaring laughter and cheers coming from the Gryffindors, glancing over there for a moment to see the Weasley twins. She just shakes her snow white head, sighing briefly before glancing back to the first year students, their names being prepared to be called out alphabetically.
As soon as the hat finishes his song, and proper applause and praise comes to it(is that a wink it gives towards those Weasley twins?), McGonagall moves up to the plate. So to speak. One hand lifts high, marking the beginning of silence in the Great Hall, and the other deftly slips open the long scroll, which bounces downward towards the floor, only to curl back up and hang there in the air. It is obvious as to the nature of the sorting now that the hat has spoken, and so there is barely another moment of waiting until that sharp voice echoes throughout the high ceiling, over the small horde of Hogwarts students.
"Nessa Elis." Step right up, and have your course determined.
Hrf? Nessa's head snaps up with a slight jerk — she pauses for a moment, and then slowly steps up. Being on the spot certainly is something new for Nessa! She toys a bit of dark hair back behind her ear as she steps up toward the front of the hall, and then turns — she does her best to simply stare at the back of the hall while she waits for her sorting.
For the first time, the hat lifts from its place on the old stool, making exactly enough room for the first year to go; in McGonagall's hand, it seems like quite the fate. Once the hat is up, the girl will sit; and the Sorting Hat plops down over her hair, comfortable yet a phantom weight on those little shoulders like it will be for the others to come.
The Sorting Hat rests upon nessa's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Hmmmm…..yes….".
The Sorting Hat says, "Hmmmm…..yes….".
The Sorting Hat says, "You'll fit best in…"
The Sorting Hat says, "Gryffindor!!!"
Melissa watches the sorting, and tilts her head curiously. "Gryffindor? That doesn't seem quite right… she didn't seem like one when I saw her…"
With some of the other professors, Dumbledore politely claps for the Sorting, and if his applause is a shade more enthusiastic because the hat shouted Gryffindor, not many people are likely to give him grief for it.
Julian closely watches the girl to see if she's noticeably less intelligent than before. After all, if she's had her brains removed, it should show, right? He frowns and waits his turn. He does catch the responses around him, like the crazy whooping from the garishly red and gold table.
The Gryffindor table ERUPTS in applause and loud cheering as the members yell out for their new friend. Braeden raises from his seat, beckoning to her with vigor and a broad grin on his face painted for yet another to join their ranks. "It seems Gryffindor rings in the year." He says pointedly to the others around him.
Nessa sits, and stares forward silently! She certainly has a grim look to her as the hat is placed upon her head — perhaps looking a bit comical in doing so. Her hands rest on her knees and she keeps her smooth lips set tightly; even once sorted, she makes no motion to betray her emotions by expression. Certainly a.. focused little girl, at least. Once sorted and released, she quietly slips down off the stool and moves to join the Gryffindor table.
Sorrel pushes up to her tiptoes, her height giving her an advantage to peer over those shorter so that she can get a better view of what's going on. With a thoughtful frown, she drops back to her flat feet once the Hat has made the call, mulling over what it is she's just seen.
Nestor begins to clap heartily and smiles, crossing his freckled, chubby arms and crossing them over his chest with a smile. He stared up at the roof and held out a hand, then shrugged and looked back to the hat.
Mei blinks and then huhs. "I would have thought Slytherin for sure…" she mutters to no one in particular.
Gryffindor does ring in the year, and a flickering upturn comes to the elderly woman's thin lips as Nessa moves off to join her house table. Some more names are read, and those nervous children move off to their houses after the hat sorts them out. Next up:
"Melissa Burch." Minerva echoes again, the hat's tip curled in her palm and ready to sit it upon the next head.
Melissa 's head snaps up as she hears her name and scurries forth to wear the hat, looking around at the various tables as she puts it on.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Melissa's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Difficult….very difficult…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Right…."
The Sorting Hat says, "Ravenclaw!!!"
Cheers from the nerds of Hogwarts, or at least the music nerd. Kyrie lets out a whistle that makes the boy sitting next to her look at her with awe on his face, even as she yelps and rescues her recorder from falling off the table due to fists hitting the table and making the plates jump. "Go Ravenclaws!"
Melissa pumps her fists in excitement, pulls off the hat and runs to the Ravenclaw table, taking the nearest open seat to her friend Cho.
Jackson claps politely, peeking around the others in line to watch the process — his diminutive height doesn't help him much with being able to see.
Well, it's not the first sort of the year, but second isn't entirely /that/ bad. Ophelia applauds with a fair amount of gusto, likely with the rest of her table, at their new Housemate. And it's someone Ophelia marginally recognizes! AS she is also sitting in the vicinity of Cho, Ophelia smiles to Melissa, "Welcome!"
With a cheer Nestor began to clap excitedly, not quite sure why he was so enthusiastic. The whole group seemed to be happy about it so he didn't really bother himself with the details. They were happy, HE was happy. That's good enough for him.
Melissa grins. "Hi! Glad to be here! I hope we have some fun!"
Ravenclaw. They are up in the towers. Julian watches the girl move toward the table. He considers that they're doing this alphabetically. But 'Bean' is earlier than Burch. Then he remembers what the lady called him. 'Legume'. Maybe that's where he'll be. Glancing back up at the ceiling, he watches the night sky for a moment before returning his attention to the strange hat.
Ashley has been cheering for the first years, with no less enthusiasm. Wouldn't be fair to cheer them any less just because they didn't get sorted into Hufflepuff. He does let a small frown loose, though.
Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, Slytherin; a few more children are sorted out to respective houses, and at least one of them is severely unhappy with being placed where he was. But no fear, the march continues, deliberate and ceremonious. McGonagall scans the list a name further, the hat's wrinkled features seemingly peering carefully at the oncoming heads, his ties dangling below.
Nestor jumps! He quickly shuffled up, his wide body cutting a swathe through the crowd and apologizing profusely to each person he jostled, stopping at a skid in front of the hat and panting loudly. He opened his mouth the speak, thought better of it, then shut it tightly.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Nestor's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Better be…."
The Sorting Hat says, "Hufflepuff!!!"
Ashley claps for Nestor, standing briefly to wave him over and to sit down with the rest of the House, but leans in and whispers for him to try and sit close to the front when he moves by him.
More polite applause from the Dumbledore and the other professors, with the headmaster nodding a welcome to each new student, his eyes traveling toward the Weasley twins for just a moment, then back across the other assembled students.
Mei beams at the new little badger, watching him intently before giggling when the kid nears the table.
Yes! Another Hufflepuff! Perpetua rises from her seat to applaud the newest sortee, along with a other house members who are so inclined.
He cheers, almost losing the hat in the process and rushing down to the Hufflepuff table with a wide beaming smile across his face. He really had no idea what he was doing, but he seemed happy to belong anywhere. He took a rather extra-wide section at the table near Ashley and wiped the sweat from his brow from the brisk jog.
Sorrel watches the other students be sorted, her gaze following each to their respective table, observing the reception they get. From the way she's bouncing slightly on the balls of her feet, she's beginning to get a bit anxious for her turn. It's so hard to just wait without knowing.
Cullen raises his hand along with several others, the boy knocking fist to the table, creating small drum for the new Hufflepuffs to march along to whenever they're called. "Good job!" He'll join in applause now and then, whenever it comes time for his House to have the spotlight.
Nestor's cheeks burned crimson, hiding his face a bit in embarrassment.
It must not be alphabetical either. Hmm. Julian tries to figure out if there's a method to the madness, or if it's just plain old ordinary madness. He watches his year mates get sorted one by one, beginning to see the patterns in the process.
Let us hope Nestor shoots up like a weed, or else this Hogwarts food may just happen to spoil the portly boy. As for Sorrel, McGonagall's eyes seem to pick her out prematurely somehow, just before that voice breaks the applause once more.
Sorrel draws in a sharp breath, stopping mid-bounce so that she's still up on her toes. She all but tumbles forward as the momentum catches up a moment later, but uses it as a head start to scurry on up and take her turn, offering a rather excited grin to McGonagall before wide eyes take in the Sorting Hat from up close.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Sorrel's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Hmmmm…..yes….".
The Sorting Hat says, "Difficult….very difficult…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Right…."
The Sorting Hat says, "Ravenclaw!!!"
And yet another round of applause! Ophelia seems happy. That's two so far!
Nestor seems a bit crestfallen he was not joined by another, but he begins to clap loudly anyway, smiling jovially.
Melissa claps enthusiastically for Sorrel.
Sorrel seems to take almost a bit of pride in being deemed difficult, and she's quick to start off towards her new place in the Great Hall - only remembering after a few steps to bound back and return the hat. Then she's off to join her new housemates at the Ravenclaw table.
"Yay, more Ravenclaws!" cheers Kyrie, her fist in the air, the one that's holding her recorder, but at least she has the presence of mind not to accidentally brain someone with it. Not that she cares about the other person', but the recorder might get damaged. "Welcome!" she calls out to the latest new student who'll wear the blue and bronze.
There is a collective sound of amusement from both Professor McGonagall and the Sorting Hat itself. The noise must mean that he does not mind being the source of so much sheer excitability. As one ages for so very long, it is not difficult to start admiring even the little things.
"Jackson Holland." Her eyes find the face to match this name even more swiftly, for hopefully obvious reasons.
Jackson squeaks slightly with excitement and scurries up to the front, face lit up by his bright smile. He is just as restless and bouncy as he has been as the Sorting Hat goes on his head. His gaze scans the tables eagerly, looking hopefully for friendly faces.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Jackson's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Difficult….very difficult…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Better be…."
The Sorting Hat says, "Hufflepuff!!!"
Nestor could hardly contain himself, he lept up and hooted and hollered, waving frantically as if to get Jackson's attention and then settled down to clap till his palms turned red.
Julian is getting a little bit restless as he waits for his turn. He watches the others pass by him, and a realization hits him: he's going to be on display for everybody to see. He inhales, then exhales slowly, forcing his nerves to calm down.
Ashley claps loudly again, standing to make sure Jackson knows where to come sit. He really hopes these first years aren't as wild as they were last year.. and he shoots a look down the table at some of the second year Hufflepuffs. He grins, though. Happy in the moment.
Mei slowly turns her head, peering curiously at Nestor. Shrugging the girl just giggles and shakes her head before turning to watch the rest of the sorting.
Jackson doesn't contain himself much either, his grin curving wider. "Thankyouhat," he squeaks as he takes it off and carefully returns it, and then trots excitedly away to join his new table, waving cheerfully to his house-mates and taking a seat by Nestor.
Nestor scoots over a bit, since his girth was something of an obstacle, and could hardly contain his excitement.
Sorrel offers a grin of thanks to the welcomes as she settles into a little spot along the table. It's so much nicer watching it from here, and now she knows, which is enough of a relief that the next sort gets rather enthusiastic applause, even if it isn't into her house.
Julian's agonizing wait is no longer being tried; he too is fixed with a darting stare by the Transfiguration professor, moments before she nods to check the list and lift the hat in her further hand.
"Julian Legume." Not Bean, as he might have wanted, but regardless- it is his turn under the brim.
It takes Julian a long moment to realize that it's his turn. Right. That's the name the lady used. He strides confidently to the stool and sits down, face intentionally impassive.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Julian's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Better be…."
The Sorting Hat says, "Slytherin!!!"
Zarina grins proudly as the name 'Slytherin' is shouted from the pointed, old Sorting Hat, standing up to her feet with the cheers and clapping of the rest of her House. Her grin grows, everyone giving Julian high fives as she reaches out to give her own congratulations. Chuckling to herself, she brushes back her long, silver white hair, her bright blue eyes glancing back up at the hat as the jubilant cheers start to slowly die down.
Nestor looks blankly for a moment, knowing he's never seen anyone sorted into that house. He claps excitedly anyway, but the excitement was starting to cause his hands to sting.
There's a quick, genuine smile on his face as Julian hops down from the stool. He quickly schools his expression into one of mild acceptance, and walks toward the Slytherin table at a brisk pace, accepting the high-fives and cheers as seeming to be his due.
The shock of seeing Julian sorted into Slytherin causes the girl to blink. In fact it's almost as though Mei's jaw hits the table with a comic like loud THUNK. Blinking the girl ahs and then blinks more. "you gotta be kidding me…A…muggleborn in Slytherin?" Blinking some she ahs. "The'll eat him alive."
Nestor says, "M-muggle? What's a muggle?"
Ashley frowns when he sees that happen. "Well, I've never often seen the hat be wrong.. I've heard it has been a few times.." He sighs. "Poor kid. He better not tell them he's Muggleborn, or he's never going to hear the end of it. He leans in to Nestor. "A Muggle is someone who can't do magic. You know.. my parents, his parents.."
"My pa's a muggle," Jackson tells the other first year cheerfully. "Do they not like them over there?" He squints across at the Slytherin table.
Nestor looks perplexed, "But my parents didn't do magic, but I can. I'm not one of them?
Ophelia's parents, but that's neither here nor there. Not knowing the whatsits, though. Ophelia just leans back, before stretching a little. Nice turnabout, she thinks.
Near Kyrie's bit of the Ravenclaw table, some of the other students seem a bit surprised. And when someone comments why, she shrugs and comments quietly, "It's more likely his name than anything else they'd snark on over there." She oughta know, given her own surname. "Hopefully he'll have the steel underneath to hold his own. Good luck to him." And that's not spiteful, she's actually being polite.
Melissa looks at him with interest. "I hope he'll be all right…"
Nearing the second half proper of the alphabet, the next name from the deputy headmistress is rung out.
Oswald stands up then heads down the aisle towards the stool and hat. He turns around to face everyone awaiting for his turn to be sorted.
The Sorting Hat rests upon Oswald's head and suddenly comes to life.
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "Interesting….very interesting…".
The Sorting Hat says, "You'll fit best in…"
The Sorting Hat says, "Slytherin!!!"
What parents? Julian ignores the commotion he seems to have caused, and sits at the table, waiting for whatever is next. He can't hear the comments of the people at the other table, but wouldn't be too worried about them if he could. When the Hat sorts another kid into his House, he cheers with the others.
Oswald raises a eyebrow at the answer that the hat gives. He moves over to the table to join his other housemates. Quiet as ever still.
Wow, another. Nestor clapped vacantly and he began to wonder what they did in that house, what made them unlike his own. He had heard the hat, but still a bit vague what this all meant.
Ashley shakes his head at Nestor. "No, you're Muggleborn. Like me. Likely someone down your family history was a witch or wizard, though."
Oswald finally speaks "It the character of the person in the house not the breeding to me. But, then again I'm weird." He gives a grin.
"Not likely," he frowned, "All I remember were coal miners."
Nestor frowned, that is.
The cheers go up at the Slytherin table once again as the House is boomed by the Sorting hat, the grin growing on Zarina's full lips again as Oswalk is declared as one of them. Others cheer and shout their approval, reaching up to slap him on the back or with high fives. Some of them turning around to sneer and heckle the other tables.
Shortly following the last student to be sorted, the front doors leading into the Great Hall slam open with a thundering BANG. No sooner than it opens, in stomps the heavily scarred ex-Auror, Mad-Eye Moody, leaning heavily on his walking stick. The hand not occupied with supporting him on the stick is holding a troll's head. (It's still dripping and Filch is possibly none too happy. Moody doesn't care.) Behind him, are three familiar faces amongst the student body. Bringing up the rear is a fifth person, namely a young witch. Leading the small group, he stomps up the middle aisle, heading for the faculty table. Also, just because they're within the safe walls of Hogwarts, doesn't mean his fake and vividly blue eye isn't whizzing a full 360 in its socket. As he passes along the ranks of students, the dripping troll head is thrust at Mei, and he growls, "Hold this!" Then continues his way to the faculty table. "Had a bit of trouble as you can see," he says quite loudly across the hall, directing his words at Dumbledore.
Mei blinks, sqeeing at the thing she's handed. Staring at it she ahs and then faints dead away.
Nestor swooned, and fainted dead onto the table with a resounding THUD!
Ashley catches Mei in one arm, and nimbly grabs the head in the other. He turns away from looking at it right away, maneuvering it under the table to hide it from the younger students. "Hey, nobody look." He frowns at Nestor, and is glad he feinted table first. "Nobody else look!"
Oswald smirks at seeing the head "Nice trophy." He says at Moody.
Julian leans forward, hoping to see the head. "What is that?" He is supremely interested. Doesn't look remotely human, of course. He looks up and down the table trying to find the kids with the badges. "What is that?" He repeats.
Jackson pales, his blue eyes going huge and wide. He squeezes his eyes shut dutifully at Ashley's suggestion, but has already seen the: "Is that a /head/?" he squeaks nervously.
Melissa looks around in a bit of confusion. "Um… what's going on?"
Like other students, Ophelia wants to know what's what! Kneeling on her bench she peers over to the Hufflepuff table with wide eyed curiosity.
Zarina blinks in surprise as the front doors of the Great Hall bang open, the entire hall seeming to fall hushed as Mad-eye Moody rushes in. The moment the head is thrust to Mei, the Slytherin girl frowns, her hands placing themselves on the table as she stands to her feet.
Stephen has been watching the Sorting Ceremony with mild interest, watching the firsties get sorted until Julian and Oswald are sorted into Slytherin House. He claps loudly as the two take their place at the end of the Slytherin table before the din quiets down. Then, it's Alastor Moody. His eyebrow raises at the sight of the famous Auror and then he puts two and two together with the empty seat for the Defense Against the Dark Arts position. The 5th Year Slytherins erupt with laughter as Mei and Nestor faint.
Following behind Moody is indeed one of three familiar faces. Harry. Already wearing his uniform, and looking incredibly sheepish at how the entrance is made, he does his best to smile. "I thought it was going to be a quiet entrance." he whispers to Ron and Hermione, who tag along beside him. Great, he's going to be hearing about this for sure from some people. Probably Snape too.
Despite the number of students who are no doubt about to panic and some even fainting as he rises to his feet, the headmaster of Hogwarts steps around the high table, moving toward the podium. "All is well now, Alastor?" Dumbledore asks of Moody, pointedly using his unconcerned behavior be his guide as to whether there is a true need to flee, although he flicks his fingers to Madame Pomfrey to tend to the fainted students with some old-school smelling salts. Another slight flick of his fingers is signal enough to Harry, Ron, and Hermione that they should take their seats for now.
Sorrel is already pushing up onto her knees before the door has swung shut again, using the edge of the table to brace herself so that she can peer over the heads of the taller, seated students and see what it is going on. "Who's that? Why's he brought a head? Is this another part of the feast? We aren't going to have to do something with it, are we?" The questions aren't directed at anyone in particular.
As if fainting wasn't bad enough, when she does come around, Mei finds that somehow she's held in the arms of Ashley. Now that's not a bad thing, that's for sure (though she's probably catching stares from other girls.) No, it gets worse. Blinking, Mei suddenly blushes several shades of crimson. Stammering a soft thank you she switches between English and Chinese before just settling on trying to shrink down and not be noticed. There's a thank you in that somewhere.
The aforementioned witch, with her bubblegum pink hair, hisses from behind the trio. "Mad-Eye!" She's about to go to the table to revive kids, but one's already waking up. "Here, lemme have that head, okay?" She'll flick her hands to Mei, "C'mon, just toss it to me, kind'a like a ball," Tonks offers.
Melissa's head now turns to look at the people who are coming in. "Oh, there's Harry… I met him at the ice cream shop… and that must be the Defense teacher…"
Jumping at the 'BANG!' of the doors and the sudden arrival of Moody and the others, the witch in the back is the one who garners most of Kyrie's attention. Moody's appearance is apparently known to her, although she can't help a blanch at the sight of an actual troll head before it's given to the Slytherins, and she opines, "/Gross/." However, that's her only comment for now, mostly fascinated with the witch with the pink hair.
Moody seems unconcerned about the ruckus he's caused, and the students that have fainted away. If they can't handle a severed troll's head, they may not make it through their years at Hogwarts. "Just fine Dumbledore, luckily those three already tackled a troll. As first years, so they told me." He reaches out to shake hands with the headmaster. His natural eye is on Dumbledore, while the fake one is scanning the golden tower.
Zarina frowns hard as Stephen and other fifth year Slytherins erupt in hysterical laughter, her expression darkening as she gives the Prefect a scowl, "You're a Prefect! Get your act together." she snaps at him, though her attention is already turning back to the bloody head that was discarded. The young Slytherin girl with long white hair scowls at the sight of it, obviously with much distaste as her blazing sapphire eyes snap up at Moody for his explanation.
Mei doesn't even look at Tonks, pointing to Ashley and feigning ignorance of everything. Including the English language at this point. Head down she just shakes her head.
Ashley makes sure Mei can sit alright before removing his arm entirely, and pulls the troll head out from under the table to toss it to the witch whom he is unfamiliar with, but looks to be an adult. Likely he got some blood on the table, so he takes his wand and points at the liquid. A soft 'tergeo' is said before he looks back to Moody and Dumbledore. If he noticed Mei's blush or a reason for it, he isn't speaking.
The following names on the register are called, and the remaining handful of first years are cast away to their houses, and the scroll returned weightlessly to that cavernous sleeve of Professor McGonagall's. No sooner than this occurs, BANG, the doors swing open- and in comes the Auror, his posse, and a freshly severed head. Despite the old auror addressing the headmaster, the first one to react is Minerva, her eyes ablaze and posture completely rigid.
While the woman does not have a booming voice, she cuts, clear as lightning in a thundercloud. "Professor Moody! What is the meaning of this-" Her wand points straight at the head, far across the room, an extension of her long arm and a stern demand from her throat. "Miss Tonks, please remove Professor Moody's trophy from the hall."
Though Minerva has time to round her face unto Alastor, the burning of her glare into him flatlines into simmering distaste as she regards his familiar exchange with Albus, and the trio to come into the hall with him. "This is a school, Alastor, not your personal stomping grounds, nor a place to bring freshly disembodied heads. There are ways of disposal that do not require show-and-tell." With a flick of her wrist, the wand readied subconsciously from before in her hand is tucked away, and the tall woman clears her throat before nodding once to Dumbledore out of departing respect- if she were capable of twitching with irritation, she might have done so already- and making her way back towards the faculty table where the empty seat remains beside Severus Snape.
Harry's eyes glance up to the head table, and catch the motion. Unconcerned with the troll head, he nods and the Trio make their way over to the three empty plates that seem to have been reserved for them. Fred and George, of course, start trying to ask questions, but Harry is quick to shake his head and give them a look that says 'later'.
Rising slightly above the other students at her table, Perpetua tries to get a look at what's causing a commotion, and regrets it. EW. She's seen some sick things in class, but ugh! "Is that.. oh man.." Just a little pale in the face, she sinks back into her seat. Hopefully it won't interfere with her appetite.
"A troll?" That's one of Julian's questions answered. "Who are they?" He nods his head slightly toward the Trio, intrigued that students are the ones responsible for the kill. He's got his guesses, of course, but he wants to have them confirmed.
Moody merely shrugs off Minerva's reprimand, but does say gruffly, "Won't be happening again." With all his battle scars, missing leg, eye, etc, he's probably faced scarier than Professor McGonagall in a tirade. Then, he's stomping up to the faculty table, and settling himself heavily into the chair that was left vacant for him.
Tonks catches the head easily, and Ashely gets a grin. It's been three years and Tonks still stiffens and straightens at the sound of that voice. Oh, wait…she's not in school anymore… "Sure thing, Professor." Getting her bearing, she gives it a little toss—not the worst she's dealt with under the eye of Mad-Eye Moddy. turning, she moves for the door, but she gives Harry and his friends a farewell grin. Stepping out of the Great Hall, she sighs. Where's Filch so she can pitch a head at him? Y'know, for old times' sake.
Braeden looks up at the display as it happens with the shake of his head and something of a frown, "Always coming in with the big entrances." His arms cross over his chest once more as he looks up towards the stage, seeming to avoid matching eyes with the motley band though his attention does drift across Alastor Moody and Tonks with speculation. "The greatest Auror of the age and another. Dad did mention something about him. Guess he was right." The frown is replaced with something of a grin over it though he doesn't say any more as he watches the raised platform of the professors and otherwise.
Dumbledore shakes Moody's hand with a firm manly grip and murmurs a thanks to Tonks for getting the severed head out of play and trying /so/ hard not to be amused by the reactions it got. Then McGonagall is gravely thanked for upholding tradition and getting the Sorting done with minimal fuss, although there's a pause when she gives Moody a piece of the witch's mind. Moody is gestured to sit in the free chair before he steps up onto the podium, which isn't really necessary, as he's so tall already, but Flitwick must've used it last and didn't take it down all the way when he was done with it.
"Before we begin our excellent feast, I have a few announcements to, well, announce…" And then he waits for a few moments until near-silence descends upon the Great Hall.
Sorrel doesn't even pause, even though no one answered her first round of question. "Woah, she's mad. So troll heads aren't a usual thing then? How do you dispose of one? And how come those three are so late? Is that normal?" But since the excitement seems to be dying down, she somewhat reluctantly returns her bottom to her seat, leaving her to crane around the others to make sure she isn't missing anything good.
Ashley grins back at Tonks, whoever she is, and watches her leave. What? She's got a neat appearance. Then his gaze returns to Moody, as he takes his eat. "Man. That's why /I/ want to be an Auror."
Dumbledore clears his throat. "Firstly, let me welcome you all to Hogwarts, whether you're a new student, a continuing student, new faculty, or a former student," he begins, his eyes twinkling as he regards Tonks over yonder for a moment, but he doesn't dismiss her. "Secondly, as you may have already guessed, this is Alastor Moody, our new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher." He gives a few moments for those not scared out of their wits or whatever to applaud, however timorously or raucously as they prefer. "Third, I do have an announcement regarding broomsticks, thanks to Madam Hooch." A hand gestures to said witch sitting at the high table. "Due to severe safety concerns, I have decided that it's in the school's best interest to ban Twigger 100 broomsticks from Hogwarts." He lifts that selfsame hand in a cautioning gesturing to try and ward off any immediate protests from the speed junkies amongst the students. "Fast brooms are all well and good, but there is such a thing as too fast. What you do on your own time during holidays is your own concern, of course, yours and your family's… I'd just prefer not to get pelted with owls from concerned parents and guardians during the school year." And then, with a somewhat impudent grin, the old man says, "I'll bet you all are wondering what this thing is." He jerks a thumb over his shoulder to the ornate golden tower behind him. It's still taller than and two-thirds skinnier than Hagrid.
Melissa grins at the headmaster's reference to the broomstick… she was there of course, and knew exactly what the problem was…
Mei looks up at the thing, mutters something in Chinese and then goes back to trying not to look at anyone. Especially decapitated troll heads.
Moody settles back in his seat, fake eye zooming around in its socket continuously. When Dumbledore introduces him, there's a simple grunt from the man as he withdraws his flask and takes a drink from it. This earns a reproachful stare from Professor Flitwick.
Ashley looks behind Dumbledore at the tower-like object. He actually hadn't noticed it yet, and does find himself to be quite curious. He turns his head to look at Mei. "Any idea what it is? I'm sure the Headmaster will tell us in a moment anyway."
Julian heard about the Twigger. He listens to the words, trying to gauge what he can about the Headmaster from his speech. When he points out the golden tower, Bean realizes that it must not be a regular fixture in the room. How was he supposed to know? "Is the old guy for real?" His street manner peeks through as his curiosity gets the better of him. At a whispered 'shhh' from his neighbor, though, Julian quiets and returns his attention to the front.
Still frowning, Zarina watches for several moments as the situation is resolved, for the most part it looks like. So with a slight look of concern, the Slytherin girl lowers herself to sit once more, waiting with the others for the excited and alarming chatter to quiet down. As the Professor clears his throat and welcomes everyone to a new year at Hogwarts, the frown begins to soften slightly, becoming curious as the new Defense Against The Dark Arts teacher is introduced to the whole school. The frown is returned when he continues on about banning a certain brand of brooms, nothing of her concern, as she has a Numbus.
Mei blinks and then shakes her head at Ashley, still just a bit skittish.
Nestor moans and begins to come to, still a bit bleary-eyed and not sure what has happened.
"Hogwarts is going to host a most prestigious tournament this year," Dumbledore continues. "It was actually intended to be one where we hosted two other wizarding schools' students and champions would be selected, the famous Tri-Wizard tournament, but alas, Beauxbatons and Durmstrang declined to come to terms with the Ministry. However, we're going to hold our own tournament. A champion will be selected from each House, just one each. These champions must be over the age of 16, so I'm afraid only sixth and seventh-years are eligible. HOWEVER," he adds in a louder tone as some of the younger kids immediately indicate their displeasure, "students third-year and up may volunteer for support teams to assist the champions of their house in the event their champion is unable to continue with their very difficult and oftentimes dangerous task. To select each House's champion, those eligible students may place their names on a scrap of parchment and put them here…" And with a wave of his wand and stepping away from the golden tower, Dumbledore reveals what's inside as the outer casing seemingly melts away into nothing. "The Goblet of Fire," he utters in a hushed, reverential tone, the plain goblet within the casing bursting forth with bright blue fire on its silver pedestal.
Dumbledore seems to be winding this down finally. "I will warn you again that the tasks are dangerous and even life-threatening, hence why the tournament is restricted to older, more experienced students. While you may win eternal glory for being the Hogwarts Champion, putting your name into the Goblet is considered a binding magical contract, per Mr. Bartemius Crouch, in charge of the Ministry's Department of International Magical Cooperation. If you put your name in and the Goblet selects you, you are bound to compete, even if you've changed your mind later, so I want you to think about it considerably first. The champion selections will be made on Halloween at our feast then." And then he brightens considerably. "Speaking of feasts…" he says, clapping his hands, "Let's eat."
Nestor blinks, looking at an empty plate, "What does he mean, let's eat?"
Across the room, on all the tables, food magically appears! Traditional food mostly of England, Scotland, and Ireland, though there are some ethnic dishes for those not originally from these parts. Pitchers of pumpkin juice also appear.
Ashley looks rather shocked, and looks between some of the older Hufflepuff students. One of them gives him a playful hit on the arm, and he shakes his head. He points at the tables, tapping Nestor on the shoulder. "He means, let's eat!" And then he digs in.
Giggling softly, coming around finally, Mei ooos and then looks down. What a wonderful thing, being able to eat food from home without having to go there. Taking her time, she picks up a few fried dumplings and something that looks faintly like pasta and rice before picking up her chop sticks and starting to eat. After a few bites she chuckles and says to Ashley "I meant to tell you. Thank you."
Julian jumps back, eying the table full of food. His eyes widen, and his whispered "Aaah", echoes around the table. Yes. Muggleborn here. He watches the other students who start eating at a good clip, and decides to put a little of everything around him on his plate. It's not too full, but he's tasting, savoring every single bite.
"Ohmygosh!" Jackson bounces in his seat as the food appears. "/Woah/. They just make all that come from nowhere?" He heaps his plate high with food and fills his glass with juice. "Is he serious about life-threatening? I mean are they gonna have a contest where people /die/?"
Sorrel is actually silent until Dumbledore stops talking, since she's not going to miss out on that cornucopia of fascinating information. As soon as he's done, though, she starts up again, "So I can't enter? What does he mean dangerous and life-threatening? I thought the school was supposed to be safe. Do you think someone will get hurt?" She's not worried so much as, well, curious. "Woah, where did all this food come from?" she goes on, after a brief pause to take in the sudden appearance of the feast.
Melissa grins as the food appears. "All right!" It's food time, and Melissa gets some chicken and beans to eat.
Oswald takes in some food on his plate. "The name is Oswald Silvertop, and its a pleasure to meet you all." He says at Slytherin table. "Sorry I was little quiet before, just that I never talk all that much until now." He smirks slightly
Zarina blinks at the announcement of the Quidditch being cancelled, instead being replaced by the Tri-Wizard tournament as the Goblet of Fire is revealed soon. She watches the goblet for several moments, studying it before returning her sapphire eyes to the Professor once again, her jaw setting in thought. It is only moments after does the food magically appear across the spread and tables of each House, her full lips tugging into a wide grin as she helps herself to a drink of pumpkin juice. "Mm," she licks her lips, smirking happily, "Delicious. It only tastes this wonderful at school." she looks up at the Slytherins, smiling brightly, "I can't wait for the first ball, to be honest."
Nestor gasps in astonishment, looking at the headmaster, "Did he conjure all this food out of thin air?! Wow, that's the kind of magic that I want to work!" He says this as he begins overstuffing his plate with mostly meat-centered dishes and chomping furiously into a hunk of mutton.
Kyrie listens to the speechifying with half a pointed ear, since the headmaster said it was only for older students. Not that her mum is a bad cook, but when the speech is done and the Goblet revealed (and the girl has her 'oooooh, pretty!' moment when the blue flame appears), the young Ravenclaw starts helping herself to the newly-full platters of food around her. Unlike some of the greedyguts nearby, however, she seems to be pacing herself, picking the best morsels off a platter when it's offered to her, focusing on slightly-healthier choices, but not going nuts with it.
Ashley has a mouthful of pudding as he turns to look at Mei. "Huh? Thank you for what?" He can be so oblivious sometimes. He gulps the food down. "I think I'm going to enter."
Mei ahs and then shrugs. "I would, but I can hear it now. My mother would be beside herself, yanking me back home faster than you can say…well, never mind, it doesn't translate well." Giggling the girl just enjoys her food, picking at it somewhat like a bird.
Snape casts his eyes over the gathered students, not taking any food for himself for the moment - instead choosing to simply stare at the gathered students. After all, if anyone is going to cause trouble it will be when everyone else is distracted by the feast, no doubt.
Like Snape, Moody hasn't started eating yet, but for different reasons. The Ex-Auror is still eyeing the whole room, and the staff table. At once. His walking stick is left propped against the table as he leans back some in his chair.
Nestor says, "Who's that guy with the long black hair and the long nose at the table? He looks.. like he's not very hungry."
Shortly after the food appears, the doors to the Great Hall open again, but only enough to admit a single person, a young girl in plain black Hogwarts robes and a shock of curly strawberry hair, looking very, very lost. As she enters fully, Mhairi turns around and says something to the person on the other side of the door, listens for a moment, then nods as if understanding, although anything said to the person outside the door is lost in the hubbub of the hall. The door closes behind her, and she turns towards the room again ….
….and stops dead, staring up at the ceiling in dumbfounded awe. One hand rests still on the door handle, her jaw hanging slightly open as the sky above and the floating candles leave her arrested.
The Slytherin Zarina smirks as she looks up at Oswald over her food, "Zarina Zanford. Congrats being accepted into the noble house of Slytherin. And don't worry about it. Most of these guys only joke and sneer at other tables." she smirks and shakes her snow white head, taking a bite of pudding as her bright sapphire eyes look up at the teachers, both Snape and Moody having yet to start eating as everyone else has.
Melissa looks around at the other tables as she eats. "Hmm, are we allowed to get up? I want to see if I can talk to some of the other people around…
Over at the Gryffindor table, Harry is at least glad he made it before the feast was over. Hiking halfway here with two Aurors, one grumpy and the other seemly hopped up on sugar, can make one hungry for sure. He starts to dig in, helping himself to some of the shepherd's pie in front of him.
Mei ahs and then looks to Nestor. "That's Professor Snape…" she says after swallowing whatever it was she was eating. "Trust me when I say you do not want to anger him. His class is in the dungeons for a reason…"
Julian is distracted by the feast. This must be a one-time thing: this much food at once. He eats slowly, and pockets a roll while he thinks nobody is looking. He listens to the conversations around him, mostly about the Tournament. He isn't even thinking of entering, now or when he's older. Who needs the added trouble? "Any of you thinking of entering for Slytherin?" House loyalty and all that. That's currency he can understand.
Nestor shudders and tucks into a meat pie, eyeing the group with trepidation.
Oswald turns his head and nods at Zarina as if to say enchanted to meet you. "Ah I was glad to be sorted into the noble house of Slytherin. Even though some of the other houses put us as…uncouth or arrogant sorts. I hope to educate some of those that we aren't. We are proud of who we are." Turning to Julian with a shrug. "I dunno really. Then again I'm glad I'm a first year as that tournament sounds… dangerous."
Melissa then turns to the rest of the Ravenclaw table, concentrating on the older students… who would be their toughest? There was one girl there who didn't look too bad…
Ophelia's been quietly lost in thought. Her dishing of her plate, and her eating it, has been a slow process while she simply thinks. "Too bad I wasn't sixteen yet," she finally comments. "Won't be until April." A sigh's given. Then she taps her chin, "Maybe I can be one of their support, that might not be too bad. Would make for a great tale later on down the road. maybe a ballad of sorts." Though, knowing her, it'd have to have a slightly tragic, or morbid twist.
Ashley goes back to his food, taking in another mouthful and swallowing before speaking again. "I think I'm going to enter."
From beside Snape, Minerva is doing the same, however successfully appearing like she is in fact readying a plate of food. In truth, she is just as attentive as the other professors. As Mhairi enters, the first person likely to meet her will hopefully be one of the few Gryffindor prefects; largely to lead her over to the Gryffindor tables with the other first years.
Meanwhile, Minerva seems to be melting away at that wariness created by Moody bringing in a Troll's head. No social butterfly, Minerva McGonagall, but there is nary a soul that can claim boldness is missing. "…I wonder how long it will take for the first student to test the age line?" Her brogue-tinged voice is thoughtful, and just barely above speaking rhetorically, helping to crack at the ice near her place at the head table.
Mei laughs and then looks to Ashley before laughing softly. "You said that. Planning on entering and yet you don't even know what you might win?" Laying down her chopsticks the girl giggles. "For all you know, you could have to fight a dragon or something."
Kyrie doesn't seem very interested in the oh-so-dangerous tournament and smiles toward her fellow Ravenclaws, particularly Ophelia. "A ballad?" she questions immediately. "I was thinking more along the lines of a comedic tongue-twister done with a pounding club beat and Tolkien-esque chanting translated into Swahili with a soprano shattering glasses on all the high notes."
A few of the professors grin at each other, namely Sprout and Flitwick. The latter of the two piping up, "I dare say they would come from your house, Minerva!" Does Filius need to name names here?
Nestor looks a bit confused, eyeing Ashley and speaking in his thick Brummie accent, "Didn't he say it was risky? Are you sure you want to take that kind of risk? I mean, it's your life.. but really, what if you don't come back?" He takes a bit of meat pie and sucks it down.
Zarina lifts a brow between Julian and Oswald, shrugging a shoulder lightly, "I'm thinking about it. Being able to represent Slytherin would be an honor." she arches a white brow, glancing over the rest of the table in thought at her fellow sixth and seventh years. "Anyone else considering it?"
"Not long," Snape answers McGonagall's question with an assured tone. He emphasizes his point by staring over towards the Gryffindor Table, namely the Weasley Twins and those who happen to be sitting near to them.
Ophelia tilts her head a bit. "Oh, comedy isn't really my thing," she says with a smile, her usual way of speaking apparent, that being slow as to make sure her brogue doesn't come upon too thickly. She eyes the attraction, for lack of a better descriptor, then holds up her hand. She tries her best to do a Trelawny impression, "I foresee…. DOOM AND DEATH. AND DOOM."
Melissa laughs at Ophelia's antics.
Ashley grins at Nestor. "Hey, I'm just going to look at it as early training for when I become an Auror. That's like.. the wizard police, sort of. They hunt down and protect people from Dark Wizards.. who are people that are exactly what the name would imply. Real bad sort, Dark Wizards."
Moody's crazily spinning eye rests on Snape a little longer than other faculty members or students. Possibly long enough to make people uncomfortable, when finally he checks out some of the food offerings. Deeming them safe, he cautiously begins to eat.
"You write your own ballads and tongue-twisters?" Sorrel asks of the Ravenclaw table, using the conversation as an excuse to start asking, yes, more questions. Not like she's gotten any answers yet! Her eyebrows lift at Ophelia's impersonation, though the reference is lost on her. "Is it really that dangerous? I don't think my father would let me enter even if I could. What sort of tasks are they going to have to do, anyway?
Nestor frowns and begins to finish the last of the scraps on his plate, deep in thought about what kind of mess he'd gotten himself into.
"You are all acting as if I have troublemakers to contend with. Merlin forbid they all be in my house…" Minerva's response is simply a dose of good-natured sarcasm, matched by a subtle smile as she lifts her goblet just in time to block the gesture from view of the Hall proper. She will have to deal with ginger pranksters before long, no doubt.
"All of ten minutes," Dumbledore answers McGonagall as the latecomer is escorted to the correct table. The meal is duly consumed, even by the elderly wizard with the same keen delight as most of the unjaded students, particularly the chocolate pudding when dessert arrives and the ghosts drift through the great hall, a couple of them wistfully murmuring about not being able to enjoy the sweet act of eating anymore. Once the meal is complete, the dishes clear themselves magically, and Dumbledore once more gets to his feet, this time with a little sugar-induced spring in his step. "Before the food comas set in, it's time to settle in your dorms. First years, please follow your prefects to your new homes during the school year. The rest of you," he adds, his eyes firmly on Fred and George, "shouldn't dawdle on your way. Off you trot," he says kindly, dismissing the students to their common rooms and to bed.
Oswald finishes his meal then looks around for the Slytherin prefect. Then to Zarina, as she might know. "Whos the prefect for this house?" he asks
From the Gryffindor table, Fred and George glance at each other. "He couldn't possibly…" Fred starts, as George finish, "…possibly mean us, you think?" Fred grins broadly. "Not like we're going to run off and flood the dungeons." George's smile widens. "Why Fred, that's the best idea you've had yet. Come on. Let's go." the other twin says, as they start to follow their housemates out of the hall.
Having remained fairly quiet during the Sorting Feast, Stephen has not eaten much, a lot of food being passed on to his cat that sits quite contentedly and full of food on his shoulder. Once Dumbledore speaks up, Stephen looks over to the cat and shoos him off of his shoulder. The cat jumps off his shoulder with a yowl and scurries out of the Great Hall. Stephen then stands up and goes over to where the firsties are sitting and pre-empts Zarina's response with his own, accented in his native Scottish. "That'd be me, Stephen St. Claire.", he says. "First Years, please follow me in an orderly manner."
Kyrie nods quickly to Sorrel, looking over at the other table briefly, although Ophelia's impression of Trelawney has her in stitches, a fit of giggles upon her that nearly makes her snort her pumpkin juice. "I write stuff all the time. I get in trouble more often for writing new compositions in my exams when I don't have a piece of scratch parchment for later," she adds when she's done giggling, shrugging unknowingly at the other bits of Sorrel's question. "I dunno, don't really want to break /this/ nose," she says, pointing to her own pert schnozz. "But I'll cheer on whoever represents Ravenclaw." And right before the desserts vanish, she snitches one of the chocolate eclairs. "Hah, mine! Nyeah nyeah, magic cleaners!"
"I like them," Ophelia states. "T'is one o'my interests, really. But this year…probably won't have much time…" OWLs. AS for the tasks? "Who knows. But if'n what the Headmaster says is true, probably. Why else would there be an ageline, aye?" Ahh food's done and all that, and she sighs. She'll lean to the side, waiting to see when Stephen stansd up, and then she'll waggle her fingers at him. Why? Because she can. And then she's standing up as well. "There's your prefects," she'll helpfully point the first years to them. "Don't lose sight o'them, else you'll get lost. An' believe me, I've heard /stories/ getting lost here can be…an odd adventure."
Mei isn't a prefect, but she does gather together some of the firsties from the Hufflepuff house. Pointing at Ashley she smiles. "Follow him. He'll take you to where the dorm is. Pay close attention, don't get lost like I did my first year." Having chided the kids she winks at Ashley and stands herself.
"Right-o," Julian replies to Stephen as he stands up. He's stuck a few of the less sticky sweets in his pocket, too. He tucks himself properly in line, and prepares to go see his new dormitory. In the dungeons.
As the dinner comes to a close, Zarina wipes her mouth on a napkin, setting it aside as she glances to Stephen. She just shakes her snow white head, "You can follow him, Oswald. he'll take you to the Slytherin Commons, though we'll all go in a group. I just can't go to the boy side. Of course." she smirks some and rolls her shoulders in a light shrug, uncrossing her legs as she stands to her feet.
Melissa stands up and moves with the other first years. Oh, that girl she was looking at was a prefect… good to know.
Oswald nods "Well I will see you later then Zarina." Standing up to follow Stephen. "A pleasure to meet you then." He says to Stephen.
Once Mhairi has gotten herself sorted out and seated with the other Gryffindors, she seems to relax somewhat. Of course, food will do that, and she settles in quickly enough to enjoy the meal, abbreviated though it is. She's a little picky about her eating, but doesn't stint herself either, and spends most of the meal eating in silence and asking questions of any older students to who happened to be nearby. It sounds as if she missed the announcements, too, but it doesn't seem to bother her all that much.
Ashley shoves in a few more mouthfuls, swallowing it down nearly whole as he stands from the table. He speaks with a fairly loud voice over the drum of chatter. "Alright! First years! And anyone else who thinks it might be funny to try and sneak into another common room instead! Follow me!"
Sorrel listens to the older stands answer, nodding thoughtfully to each. She opens her mouth, clearly quite set to start asking more follow-up questions, but then Ophelia points out the prefects and makes the good point about getting lost. "Does that happen a lot? Students getting lost? Does anyone ever find them? You think maybe there are some still just wandering around the school from previous years?" Though that last bit seems to be a joke - and she's not really waiting for a response either way, since she's heading off to go fall into line with the other firsties.
"First Years, do well to remember the way from the Great Hall to our dormitories.", Stephen says in a firm voice. "Your housemates will be here to help you acclimate to life at Hogwarts.", he begins explaining as he leads the Slytherin first years out of the Hall. "The castle is an old place and has many twists and turns that will make you lose your way if you are not careful. In line behind me, please."
Nestor was quick to jump up and follow Ashley out of the room, chasing after him with a pie in one hand.
Mei stands to follow her housemates, herding some firsties along.
Right. Learn your way around. That's the first rule of any new place. Bean tunes out that part of the lecture shortly after he hears what the topic is. He follows Stephen out of the hall, making careful note of the direction they go.
Ashley says, "Do not listen to any student that tells you that you can find a back entrance into the Headmasters Office through the third floor bathroom. It is not true and you will likely be caught snooping around. If it were true, the Headmaster would surely not like to be bothered by a nosy student. He is very busy." He moves through the Great Hall. "Try and find an older student who will be willing to show you around. That should be very easy in Hufflepuff."
Doopedie do, to the tower we go, and Ophelia's gone.
Kyrie departs the Great Hall the same way she came in, and that's with an alto recorder to her lips, playing a ditty she composed during supper, a riff off of Pomp and Circumstance, but with a bit more of a modern bouncy step involved.