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I finally fell asleep at about 3 in the morning or so. I woke up to Sarah telling me that they cancelled classes for the day; all of the school was going to attend a funeral for the Squid. I couldn’t really fall back asleep so I took a shower. I decided to curl my hair, for the funeral. My dirty blonde hair curled easily away from face and I lined my eyes with a charcoal grey, making my green eyes pop. I dressed in my school clothes, not caring if people judged.
I went downstairs with her and we made our way to the grand Staircase. She headed for Professor Sprout’s office while I headed for Gryffindor Tower. I found Ron on the couch and took a seat beside him. He put his arm around me and kissed the top of my head
"Are you doing alright?" He asked me. "You look beautiful."
I nodded against his shoulder. "Thank you. I wanted to look nice for the funeral. To look nice for Hagrid. This has to be hard for him, you know?"
"He is putting on a tough face." Harry smiled. "I think that’s the only way he knows how to deal with this."
We sat there, chatting for a while, before we decided to go get some lunch. I had slept right through breakfast.
During the meal I couldn’t help thinking about my mother. The whole Squib thing was starting to bother me. That’s all I could think about.
"Uh, Hermione, would you mind coming to the library with me? It might be helpful to have a second pair of eyes." I asked, between tiny bites of my chicken sandwich.
"Sure. What did you need to find?" She asked.
"I want to know how I was born." I replied.
Harry spit a very large amount pumpkin juice across the table. "Well, uh, Mags, you’re parents were very much in love and one thing led to another…"
"No! Not like that. I mean how I am born of my mother, a squib, and a wizard for a father. It doesn’t make any sense, logically." I laughed as Hermione helped Harry wipe up the juice from his chin and the table.
"Maggie, I told you, it doesn’t matter who your mother is." Ron grabbed my hand, turning me to him. "It doesn’t matter that she’s a squib."
"It matters to me, Ron." I put my hand up to his cheek. "I’ve lived for 16 years without questioning anything. But now I feel like I have more questions than a school book. I need to know."
I looked over to Hermione. "Ready?"
She nodded. I stood and kissed Ron on the forehead. "Please, don’t be mad at me."
Hermione and I walked out and I couldn’t help feeling a sense of guilt.
"Hey, are you okay, Maggie?" Hermione grabbed my arm, making me look at her. "I think there’s something more than you’re letting on. This isn’t just about your mother, is it?"
I shook my head. "It’s something Harry said. He didn’t think that Squibs could produce magical children, even if my father was a pureblood, I think Harry is right. I have a feeling… I think she might not even be my mother."
"Maggie… Miracles happen all the time. I mean, look at me. Muggleborns are perfect examples. Completely Non Magical parents and very magical children." Hermione sighed. "This doesn’t mean that she’s not your mother."
"It’s deeper than that, Hermione. It’s more than a hunch. You know the saying ‘Follow your gut’? Well my gut is screaming at me that there’s something different about me, and I have to figure out why." I smiled. "And I need a friend to help me."
She nodded and we walked to the library. I loved the smell of these books. Full of information and facts that can help you with anything.
And I certainly needed help.
"Let’s start off with what we know." Hermione suggested. "What do you know, Maggie?"
"Squibs are born of magical families. They have no magical ability whatsoever. They usually aren’t able to reproduce magical children." I answered.
"Okay. Well, let’s start with encyclopedias. They might help."
We went to work. The books didn’t offer much as to the genealogy of Squibs. They usually married muggles and that became the birth of Muggleborns. The magic just skipped a few generations. There was very little as to the magic of children of squids, if any at all. Hermione did find one interesting thing. That most squibs are not registered with the Ministry of Magic. They don’t really know any, and they probably don’t want to know. According to many magical journals Squibs are seen with just about the same amount of disdain as Muggleborns in the eyes of Purebloods.
When I read that, I smiled.
"Why are you smiling?" Hermione asked me.
"I’m just so glad that Ron is different, you know? He doesn’t seem to care at all where I come from." I smiled even bigger. "He just cares about who I am."
"That’s how Ron was raised. The Weasleys are such a kind family. They are accepting of everyone. Harry and I are practically related. They could care less that I’m a muggleborn. I’m sure Molly would absolutely adore you."
"I’d really like to meet her. Doesn’t Ron have a little sister?" I asked. "Uh… Ginny, right?"
"She’s a year younger than us, she’s a sweetie. She’s had a crush on Harry for years." Hermione laughed, flipping through more pages.
"What about you?" I wondered.
"What about me?" She raised an eyebrow.
"Do you have a crush on Harry?" I asked rather bluntly.
"What? No. I don’t have a crush on Harry. He’s … He’s Harry!" She stuttered out.
"Right, and Ron and I aren’t going to Hogsmeade together." I retorted. "Why don’t you guys date? You’d be perfect together."
"He’s my best friend, well besides Ron. But still, what am I supposed to do if things go sour?" Hermione sighed. "I do not want to lose him."
"I highly doubt you would. Really. Harry doesn’t seem like that type of guy, you know. Granted I have only known him for a day." I shrugged.
"You’ve only known Ron for a day." She pointed out.
"That’s different, Hermione and you know it. I like Ron. As in like him. And there's something different about him. I don't know why I'm so drawn to him." I smiled. "I’d say go for it, but it’s your choice."
"I know, I know." She bit her lip, going back to the books.
I was turning a few pages and she suddenly shouted.
"There is a way!" Hermione smiled.
"Quiet! Ms. Granger!" Madam Pince screeched at us.
"Sorry." She whispered. "Look, it says right here. Unless she had a child with an heir, there is no way you are her daughter. Wait…"
"What?" I asked.
"Look. It says right here. ‘Squibs are unable to produce magical children, unless they reproduce with someone of pure magic blood.’ Even Dumbledore isn’t pure, Maggie." She looked up. "Didn’t you say you’re father had always been in Hufflepuff?"
"I don’t know. I mean a lot of his family was. He only says ‘7 generations’. I think there’s probably more." I was getting really confused. "What are you saying?"
"I really think that you are related to Helga Hufflepuff. Makes all the more sense for your mother to be spiteful towards you. You’ve got some of the most powerful magic in you, and your mother doesn’t have any."
"That’s the only way that it would work?" I asked.
"Yes! You’re the heir to Hufflepuff!" She stood, grabbing my hand. "Come on! We have to find Dumbledore."
She dragged me out of the library, ignoring the yelling from Madam Pince. I couldn’t really comprehend all of this. She ran to the signature griffin that stood as the doorway to the Headmaster’s office.
Hermione began rattling off different candy names until the eagle exposed a staircase. She dragged me up those, too, before we burst in the door.
"Dumbledore!!" She shouted with joy as the old man came in sight.
"Yes, Ms. Granger?" He turned. "Hello, Ms. Carlott."
"Hi." I smiled.
"She’s the heir of Hufflepuff!!" Hermione shouted.
"That’s quite the news, isn’t it?" He smiled.
"You don’t seem very surprised, sir." I replied.
"I’m not, Ms. Carlott." He sat down at his desk, gesturing to the two chairs in front of him. We sat as he continued an explanation. "Your father has descended from a very long line of Hufflepuffs. You are from very long line that leads all the way to Helga Hufflepuff, herself. Helga was a very brave young woman. If she were to be sorted now, she’d be in the same boat that you are. The sorting hat might have had a hard time, and may have thought twice about its decision. Just like yourself, Maggie."
"What do you mean, sir?" I asked.
"The sorting hat confides in me about the outcome of its students. It has often wondered about its choices when it comes to the sorting of many witches and wizards throughout the ages. When Professor McGonagall offered to teach you, along with her Gryffindor students, the sorting hat wondered if she saw something in you that he, too, saw. You are a very brave young woman, and I can’t help but wonder if there’s a bit of Gryffindor courage in that loyal Hufflepuff heart." The headmaster smiled.
"I… I don’t know what to say about that." I sighed. "But I do want to say that I really hope my … my lineage doesn’t affect the fact that I’ve spent more time in Gryffindor. For the first time I actually feel welcome. I have friends in this house."
"Yes, Harry and Hermione seem to be very good friends to you. And Mr. Weasley, it seems, has been an even better friend." His eyes twinkled and I blushed.
"Yes, they have been great to me." I smiled. "So there isn’t a problem with this?"
"No problem. Now, if you ladies will excuse me, I really need to prepare for the funeral. I’ll see you ladies tonight. Try to make the best of today, alright?"
We nodded. We left the office and I couldn’t help but smile all the way to the common room. We didn’t find Ron and Harry, however. We did find Ginny.
"Hey, Hermione. You must be Maggie." She pulled me into a hug, which startled me for a second, but I did return it. "Not to sound like a jerk or anything, but please be nice to my brother."
"Oh, I plan on it. Do you know where he is?" I asked as I pulled away.
"It’s Monday." She smiled. "He’s ‘practicing’ on the Quidditch field with Harry and Dean."
"Thanks. Want to come down with us? I’ve got some news for Ron."
"Oh god, you aren’t breaking up with him, are you? I don’t even know if you guys are officially dating or not!" She whined.
"No, no, nothing like that." I smiled. "It’s good news. I promise."
"Okay." The three of us made our way down to the Quidditch field, but not before we were interrupted.
"Where are you going, freaks?" Malfoy sneered from behind a column, before coming into view.
"Honestly, Malfoy, can you think of a better insult?" Ginny rolled her eyes. "I mean really, it’s been 6 years? You can think of something with your schooling, right?"
We kept going, and so did he.
"Is that a comeback, Weasley?" He asked.
"No, it was meant to be a non-verbal slap to the face. Obviously, you didn’t get the picture." I replied.
"Shut your mouth, Squib." He spat.
"I’m not a squib. My mother is. Get better dirt." I growled. I didn’t want to bring too much attention to the fact that I was an heir to a Hogwarts house, especially to the Death Eater Trainee. But he was tempting me.
"You are what your family is." He stood in front of me, attempting to glare me down.
"So does that make you a coward?" Malfoy looked like he was about to kill us as Ginny sneered at him.
"Better than a blood traitor." He spat at her.
"What does that mean?" I asked. "Really. It’s hard to betray your own blood."
"You don’t deserve your magic, Carlott." He turned to Hermione. "And neither do you, Mu…" Malfoy didn’t finish his sentence as Ginny performed a very fast Silencio to the Slytherin.
I couldn’t help myself. "I think I do deserve my magic, being the heir of Hufflepuff, and all." His eyes went wide. "Oh, does that make me better than you? I hope one day you realize your bigotry will be the end of you, Draco. I really do. You might make a different person if you weren’t so brainwashed by your father’s hatred. Maybe even a better one."
Ginny lifted the spell, and we continued our walk down to the field.
"Are you really the heir to Hufflepuff?" The young red head asked me.
"Hermione and I thought so, and Dumbledore confirmed it. It’s the only way that my mom can be a Squib and I am a magical child." I sighed. "I wanted to keep it a secret, but if that's the only way to get that weasel off our backs I don't care if the entire school knows.
"That’s so cool." She whispered.
As we made our way down to the field we were actually met by the boys on their way back. I ran the rest of the way and jumped onto Ron, knocking him over.
"You’ll never believe what I found out!" I giggled.
"That you’re a great tackle?" He groaned.
"No!" I rolled next to him, helping him to sit up.
"What is it, Mags?" He asked, smiling.
"I’m the heir of Hufflepuff." I grinned.
"What?" Harry gasped. "Really?"
"Yes, really." Hermione smiled. "We were pretty sure and Dumbledore knew."
"Isn’t that cool?!" I asked Ron, hugging him again.
"That’s pretty amazing." He smiled. He hugged me back.
"There’s a lot of heirs going around, isn’t there?" Ginny asked.
I turned to her. "What do you mean, Ginny?"
"Well, isn’t You-Know-Who the heir of Slytherin? And some say that Harry is the heir of Gryffindor, and now you’re the heir of Hufflepuff? Isn’t that a rather large coincidence?" She shrugged. "It seems so to me."
"I don’t think I’m the heir of Gryffindor, Gin. I’ve thought about it, ever since the sword. But, with ‘Mione’s help I’ve done research and there’s nothing to suggest that I am. It might just be a coincidence. The sword comes to any Gryffindor in need, not just its heir." Harry replied. "I’ve got more fame then I want. I don’t want anymore."
"When did you do the research?" Ron asked.
"During the Tournament. Back when you were pissed beyond belief at me." Harry smiled.
"Oh, right." Ron laughed, pulling us both off the ground.
We walked back to the dormitories so that the boys could shower before the funeral. We girls hung out in the common room for a while.
"You and Ron have hit it off rather well, Maggie." Ginny smiled. "Considering how short of a time you've spent together."
"Yes, we have, haven’t we?" I grinned.
I didn’t really want to think about the fact that we’ve only known each other for less than 48 hours. This is too good to not be true, in my eyes. I feel safe with Ron. Safer than I’ve felt in quite a while living with some snotty paralegal who simply sets the house alarms if I’m not back by curfew.
The boys came down the stairwell and we made our way to the shore of the lake. There were bleachers set up along the water, four for each house. As the five of us made our way up the bleachers we noticed that there was a large ship in the middle of the lake, a canopy draped over the top of it.
"Is that the squid?" Ron asked, pointing to the ship.
"My guess is they are going to burn it." I nodded.
After the school had been seated, Hagrid came to the front of the podium.
"I want to thank you all for comin. It sure does mean a lot to me. The Squid has been here since before some of them paintings can even remember. It’s been a part of Hogwarts Legacy for a very long time. I’m glad that you are all here to respect that."
He stepped down, and I couldn’t help the fact that my eyes were starting to tear up.
The teachers gathered at the waterline, all dressed in simple black robes, and pointed their wands towards the ship. Silently, long jets of flames flew to the ship, engulfing the craft. The smoke turned into a large squid which swam up into the clouds.
I started crying harder, now. Ron put his arm around me, pulling me closer.
The ship burned quickly, the corpse sinking with it down to the bottom of the lake. I sighed. If Voldemort really wanted to scare us, I think he succeeded.
The students started leaving and Harry, Hermione, and Ginny made their way to the common room. I convinced Ron to go for a walk with me.
"Where do you want to go?" He asked.
"Just around the grounds." I shrugged.
We walked, hand in hand, around the different courtyards. At one point I found a rather large pile of leaves and decided to jump in it, dragging Ron with me. I needed to do something fun to get my mind off the funeral.
We rolled around in the leaves for quite a while. Laughing and giggling like small children. After we got tired, we were too lazy to get up, so we laid there for a while.
I snuggled against Ron’s chest as we lay amongst the leaves.
"You know, this is perfect." He sighed.
"What?" I asked.
"You, me, this very scratchy patch of leaves." He replied. I laughed and snuggled closer to him. "God, I’m lucky bloke, you know that?"
"Why exactly are you so lucky, Ron?" I smiled, looking up at him.
"Because I have a very beautiful, amazing girl in my arms." He smiled back at me. "That’s why."
I laid my head on his chest again, breathing in his scent that smelled like wood polish and butter beer. A very comforting smell, if I ever did smell one. It was perfect, Ron was right. I couldn’t think of one place I would rather be, than here, in his arms, on a perfect night.
"We should get back." He whispered, kissing my hair. "They might send Filch after us."
"Yea. We can hit the kitchens on the way back. Sneak a butter beer." I suggested.
"Maybe this weekend. I’m actually not in the mood for one." He smiled. "You’re sweet enough as it is. Let’s just head up to Gryffindor. Hermione’s gonna want some girl time with you." He stood up, extending his hands.
"You’re the sweet talker, Ron Weasley." I laughed as he pulled me up and helped me brush off the leaves.
We walked through the corridors and stairwells, noticing the somber faces of the paintings and the wailings of the many ghosts of Hogwarts We made it to the common room and we were met with many somber faces.
"What’s the matter?" I asked.
"Some Aurors have been attacked, just outside London. Three of them are dead." Harry replied, standing near the fire. "Voldemort is getting restless. He doesn’t know what to do so he’s trying to scare us into doing something stupid."
"Is that all?" I asked.
Hermione shook her head, tears streaming down her face.
"They’ve attacked almost every primary school in London. Every one of them that had a relative of someone here at Hogwarts. Homes were attacked, too. There’s a list of addresses. Not a lot of people were hurt and fewer were killed… But…"
"But what?!" I yelled. "Will you just spit it out Harry?"
"Every home they attacked was completely destroyed. Half of the student body doesn’t have a home to go to anymore." Harry sighed. "This is the only place that we have no. Our homes are gone."
Hermione handed me the paper, and I scanned the list of addresses. Mine was the 15th to be hit. And my guardian was dead.
"Hannah…" I whispered.
I looked around at my fellow housemates and they all had the same look on their faces as I did…
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