More than one thousand years ago there were five great magicians of the day: Godric Gryffindor, Rowena Ravenclaw, Helga Hufflepuff, Salazar Slytherin, and Harold of Hogwarts. These five magicians were tired of being persecuted in the world. They were tired of the witch burnings, and they were tired of the secrecy. These five magicians in particular had it worse than many others, for they were being chased through the countryside by a mob. It had started nearly a month ago when as they were passing through a small village, the five of them, and there had been an incident. As they sat under the stars, a small fire burning in the center of their circle, Harold spoke of a place where witches and wizards would be safe from the outside world, where no muggle could penetrate, and where there was a school to teach, so that all magicians were educated in the ways of magic. The other four nodded in agreement, it sound like paradise to them as a light rain began. “If not for us, for the children.” Gryffindor cited. Rowena nodded, “Who would be so bold as to build such a place?” Then spoke Salazar, who had been quiet for some time now, “Why Rowena, we shall build it, and people will remember our names forever. Slytherin, Hogwarts, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Gryffindor.” Out of the group, Salazar was the most saddened by their predicament, for only last fall had his first son, who was only seven, been killed by a muggle suddenly. The muggle, a gypse by nature, had been passing by Salazar’s farm and witnessed his son harvesting the crops absentmindedly with only his wand. The gypse had pulled a bow from his raw hide bag and killed Salazar's son with one shot, and then continued on his way. Salazar had searched the country high and low for that gypse, wishing to take revenge, but these new ideas occupied his mind for now. A school that could train young wizards to protect themselves and be mindful of muggles so as not to be caught off guard. “We shall build it by hand so that it will stand for a millennia, and enchant it so that only wizards may enter and muggles will be repelled.” The other four were in total agreement and this school now dominated their conversation. They set out at once the next day in search of such a place to build their school. It had to be seclude, but on firm ground, with plenty of resources for building. They looked high and low for such a place. They searched the outskirts of the big cities first, they were always very careful and searched these places only at night. After a year of searching they turned their attention to places far far away from the big cities. Marshes, bogs, forests, swamps, and lakes. England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales. After nearly three years of searching they found the perfect location. It was nearly five hundred kilometres from the newly blooming London. It had mountains, a beautiful lake, and a thick green forest. It was Salazaar who first saw it. He stopped down in a clearing looking up at the lake, and the cliffs above. “It’s perfect.” The others came up and stood next to him, staring at the place they had been searching for. “It is what I saw in my dream.” Hogwarts voiced as they continued to stand in silence. The next day they began construction. Stone by stone they laid down an outer shell, using only their two hands, not their wands. Hogwarts played the part of foreman, he had an idea in his head of what the school, a fabulous castle, would look like when it was finished. Rowena and Helga searched the hills for the perfect stones. Salazaar and Godric were the ones who did the heavy work. It took another full year to finish the outer shell, but when it was done, and they saw the fruit of their labor, they nearly cried. “It’s beautiful.” Godric couldn’t agree more with Helga’s statement. It overlooked the lake and was only a few hundred metres from the forest. You could follow a path down around the lake and into a magnificent clearing, where the five founders had originally stood. That night as they sat around the fire, Hogwarts made a startling announcement, “I’m leaving for London, tomorrow.” None of the group knew what to say, “But why, we’re not finished here, Harold.” Salazar had a note of spite in his voice. Harold stared into the purple burning fire. “I’m going into London, so that I may find students for our school."” Helga didn't seem to understand, “But the school isn’t finished.” He looked at each one in turn, “You will be able to finish the inside by yourself, it’s up to you. But to choose students for it will be most difficult, and the earlier start I get, the better.” Rowena and Godric understood completely, but Salazar couldn’t grasp it. “Why do you get to choose the students, why can’t we all choose them together?” Hogwarts took quite a while to respond, “I am not choosing the students, I am only going to figure out a method to find them, we can discuss details when the school is finished.” Salazar didn’t seem to accept this but he let it go by the waist side. Hogwarts set off leaving the four other magicians to finish the school. For the most part they worked independent of each other. Godric worked on the upper floors, Rowena worked on the middle floors, Helga worked on the main floors, and Salazar concentrated on the basement and dungeons. Each night they would eat together outside and talk about what the school would be like when they were finished. “I can hear the children already, sitting in class, learning spells and potions.” Godric smiled at Helga’s thoughts, “I can see them flying around in the clearing playing Quidditch.” Rowena pictured the students in between classes, joking around with one another, feeling free to use magic and joke around without the fear of being seen. Salazar let out an evil smirk, “I’d like to see the children of tomorrow learn to defend themselves against muggles.” The other three sitting around the fire, stopped smiling and stared at Salazar. Perhaps he was still upset about losing his son, but it seemed there was something else, something cynical. It wasn’t until the following year that they learned of some disturbing news. The castle was more than half done when they received an owl from London, from a wizard they had yet to meet, Marvolo Malfoy. Harold of Hogwarts had been killed. He had been recognized in London and been lynched before anyone could do anything. The crowds were too big, and Marvolo didn’t think that anymore wizards should have been hurt. Hogwarts had been killed, but not before he’d figured out the solution to their dilemma. Hogwarts had enchanted a book, a giant book, and every time a new wizard was born, the name was written down. Marvolo had found the book where Hogwarts had told him it would be, just before the mob had caught up with them, and he was keeping it safe until the school was finished. The four remaining wizards sat around the fire that night in silence. Hogwarts had been a great friend, a father figure, to each of them for a long time, just about as long as they had been alive, and they would miss him dearly. Towards dawn, when their fire had died low, Godric finally spoke, “Do you remember about what we talked about, the five houses of the school, one for each of us?” The three nodded in a mournful way. “I think that we should only have four houses, and that we should name the school after Harold.” There was suddenly life in the eyes of the four people that sat around the fire. “Yes, Hogwarts’” Salazar looked in the direction of the castle, “It fits perfectly.” “Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It has a nice ring to it.” Rowena added. As the sun finally broke the horizon, the four remaining founders set to work. It took them another six months to finish the school, but when it was done they didn’t regret a single day that had passed. It was when they were finally finished that they set out to charm the school. The spent many weeks casting charms, charms about muggles, and fires, and dragons, and other magicians even. When this task was done there was only one left. That task was a shield for the school. They each came up with a different design, Salazar created a crest with a snake on it, for he was a fluent parseltongue, the gift of a great wizard he said. Rowena had a raven, it was the sign she was born under, and the sign of unity, unity among wizards. Helga had a badger, she felt that it reflected the work they had put into the school. And Godric had his lion, a pet which he had never been separated from, he felt that the strong image of this should represent the school which would never crumble. After much debate, they combined the four crests to form the Hogwarts Shield, and hung it on their school. The last touch to keep the castle safe. Students began coming the next year. The four spent each summer visiting the youngsters whose names were in the book and deciding which would be allowed to attend. Each founder chose solely for their own house, if they did not think the child would fit, then the other three were certainly allowed to bring them into their own house. The four taught the students as well. Each a different subject. After some years, wizards and witches who had graduated began to teach as well, each one taking on a new subject. It wasn’t too long after the school finally took off that other things began to happen. Things which took place around the castle. One day while Godric strolled the forest he met a Centaur, they spoke for a long time. It seems the Centaur had moved into the surrounding forest, as well as many other magical creatures, when they had heard of the school. “If wizards are not hunted and persecuted hear, them neither will we.” Some months after that families, students who had graduated and not become teachers, began to build a town in the valley where Godric and Salazar had first looked upon the location of Hogwarts. The town grew and grew until finally the founders had to forbid anymore building for fear that muggles would stumble across it. The changes took place not only at Hogwarts but also in London. Rowena had helped to build a magical Alley in the city, it surrounded many of the magical shops which had been there, hidden, for hundreds of years. And so, not only had these five magicians built a school to teach, but they had sent out their students, into the world, to make a difference.
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