• Published 23rd Apr 2017
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Magic School Days - Dogger807

When the CMC asked Discord to help them attend magic school, he pulled an owl out of his hat. Only he didn't exactly have a hat. Which was okay, since their new school had a singing one laying around. Where the hay was Hogwarts anyway?

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Chapter 32: Technical Errors

***** WARNING ***** WARNING ***** WARNING *****

The following chapter contains material that may be considered objectionable to some readers. While this chapter fully conforms to both the spirit and the letter of the ratings associated with it, those who are susceptible are cautioned to stay alert for the word "WARNING" in all capitals. If you are in this category, skip to the word "NOMINAL" and ignore everything in between. The author bears no responsibility for anyone offended by the material that is thus designated.

We now return to the story in progress.

***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL *****

In the reconfigured faculty lounge, the impromptu staff meeting now hosted an impromptu speaker. The atmosphere was somber as the guest speaker left the podium. Dumbledore had been perplexed when his deputy headmistress had introduced the mind healer from St. Mungo’s. Why had she invited the man to the meeting? It was almost as if she didn’t trust the staff to do their jobs. Tragedies had happened in the past and there hadn’t been a need for grief counseling back then. Why should it be required now?

Nonetheless, Dumbledore led a round of applause as he reclaimed the podium. “Thank you, Healer Marshals, for that informative lecture.” He said, “I can assure you that the staff and myself shall be on the lookout for the signs of depression that you have outlined.”

The healer smiled as he retook his seat, sitting among the rest as if he were part of the faculty. Which, admittedly, he was, for the time being. Minerva had taken it upon herself to persuade the hospital to assign him to the school for as long as his services might be needed. Dumbledore could only sit back and nod his approval; to do otherwise would jeopardize his shaky relationship with his deputy headmistress. Besides, the counselor's presence would do no harm.

He gave the staff some time to quiet down before proceeding. “As you are all aware, Quirinus appears to have abandoned his position. His personal effects have been removed, and he has not been seen for the majority of the week. We assume he took offense over the acquisition of a private tutor by some of our students.”

Dumbledore raised his head to look at the assembled professors. “While the tutor in question has been kind enough to hold Quirinus’ classes for the rest of the week and has agreed to cover for the coming week as well, his contract does not allow this to be a permanent solution. I’m afraid I must recruit a new DADA professor even though we are less than a full week into the semester.”

The announcement was met with muttering from those gathered.

“What are the limits on Mr. Goodman teaching the class?” Professor Vector, the arithmancy instructor, asked through the babbling.

“No more than a month,” replied Dumbledore. “Hopefully, that will be enough.”

No one said anything else on the matter; there was nothing left to say.

Discord continued to stare into the pair of stunningly beautiful eyes, wishing away the unshed tears he had caused as his host continued to cut off circulation.

Without warning, Alice let go of his tie and wrapped her arms around his neck.

“I should have known,” she whispered. “You’re just too perfect for no one else to have noticed before.”

“I had no intention of hurting you,” Discord said, starting his speech.

“No matter,” Alice said, “wife or mistress, you shall be mine.”

“After all we just met last . . .” Discord started, “. . . what?”

“I can share. I hope Fluttershy doesn’t mind.” Alice said pulling Discord down to place her lips on his.

In the windowless basement, the others watched the spectacle with a mixture of horror and astonishment. Before, no one would have believed that a ravenous wolf could have perfect table manners, but there was no disputing the evidence of one's eyes. Each dainty bite was followed by a thorough mastication and swallow. Lips were delicately patted clean before the cycle repeated, almost too fast for the eye to follow.

Sweetie Belle groaned as she leaned back. A half-eaten pizza that had been the size of a manhole cover sat on the coffee table before her. Pepperoni, ham, bacon, sausage, hamburger, salami, roast chicken, barbecue burnt ends, corned beef, and even more pepperoni had topped Michelangelo's Mega Meat Monstrosity. Upon seeing this piece of culinary perfection, Sweetie had lost all interest in the movie and proceeded to move as much as possible from the box into her stomach.

“Is it safe now for the rest of us to try a slice?” Dean asked, eyeing the remnants.

“Sure,” Sweetie grinned with her eyes half shut, “why wouldn’t it be?”

“I don’t know,” Parvati said. “The way you growled at Seamus earlier, uh, kind of scared everyone away.”

“I did not growl at Seamus,” Sweetie protested.

“It must have been the other purple and pink haired girl in the room then.” Dean smirked.

“I do not growl,” Sweetie insisted.

“Could have fooled me,” Seamus returned, “It would have been safer taking a bone from a strange dog.”

Sweetie snorted, “Are you saying that I’m an aggressive eater?”

“Yes!” the occupants of the room said as one, even though they would later deny that Magah and Philomena had chimed in. They would, however, swear that the owl was not what it seemed.

“Okay, okay, I’m sorry. I won’t let it happen again.”

Mending stood in the hospital hallway and watched the door to the evaluation room. She had been told that all three princesses had shown up and were now interviewing the colt. All three. In her evaluation room. At the same time. They had been in there for some time now.

The surprises just keep piling up.

Today seemed the perfect kind of day where a pony might decide to embrace new experiences -- like, perhaps, a protracted bacchanal.

She scarcely registered the sound of hoofbeats approaching as she kept her vigil.

“Mending Psyche?” asked a voice. Mending turned to behold three mares looking at her expectantly.

“Yes?” she said. “How may I help you?”

“Hello, my name is Rarity, and these are my friends, Twilight Sparkle and Fluttershy.” The white unicorn in the group said, “We were informed that you were doing a mental screening for Harry Potter.”

Mending scrutinized the mares before her before answering. “Yes,” she finally replied. “It was a disturbing interview to say the least. At the risk of sounding unprofessional, I would very much like to be present when the princesses meet the Dursleys.”

“That statement leads me to believe that you are missing some essential information,” Rarity said with a sigh. “We’ve learned that the Dursleys were compelled, with magic, to act in that contemptible manner.”

“What?” Mending’s eyebrows shot into her mane. “Somepony did this on purpose?”

“Some human,” Rarity corrected with a stamp of her forehoof. “I refuse to even think of sharing the same species as that monster.”

“To be fair,” Fluttershy said softly, “most humans seem to be nice.”

“Humans are real?” Mending asked suspiciously. “Do you seriously expect me to believe that?”

“And with that statement, I can deduce nopony told you that Harry Potter is a transfigured human,” Twilight said. “Come to think of it, we may have forgotten to mention that when we checked him in.”

Mending skeptically glared at the purple unicorn. “Are you trying to rationalize his meat eating practices by feeding me a fiction?” Surreptitiously, she signaled for the orderlies.

“What?” Twilight snorted. “No. As strange as it may sound, Harry Potter is a human from another dimension, whom Discord has given a ring to allow for the shifting of form. Furthermore, in his natural form, he is an omnivore.”

“I suppose that excuses the murder of innocent cows.” Mending's voice dripped with venom.

“No. no.” Rarity interjected, “That subject has already come up in our letters. It seems the humans have a non-sapient species of cows that they cultivate in a similar fashion as pigs. They actually have a law stating they can’t eat anything that can beg for its life.”

Mending laid her ears flat against her skull and snarled, “Just what kind of fool do you take me for?”

Twilight and Rarity stared at Mending, astounded by her hostility. Burly orderlies of all tribes approached from behind, waiting for Mending's signal.

“Miss Mending Psyche!” Fluttershy said meekly, “It’s true. Discord even gave us the ability to change back and forth as well; see?” With those words, Fluttershy’s form blurred and was replaced by a tall delicate, formerly, fictional figure.

As Mending gawked at the new revelation, Twilight said, “Fluttershy, that might not be such a good idea.”

“Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!” came the girlish cries from the orderlies, chilling everypony’s blood in their veins. Their hoofbeats sounded like machinegun fire as they fled from the former impossibility.

“Never mind,” Twilight said, defeated, as Fluttershy swiftly resumed her natural form.

Mending cringed as she heard the screams recede into the distance, only to jump as the door of evaluation room flew open.

“What’s going on here?” Celestia demanded, followed quickly by Luna, Cadence, and a small blue pegasus colt with a messy black mane.

“I’m sorry, princess,” Rarity said. “It’s just that Fluttershy here felt the need to terrorize a random pony or three.”

“I’m sorry.” Fluttershy cringed and hid her face behind her mane.

Celestia looked at Fluttershy, glanced at Rarity, turned her gaze down the hall toward the receding screaming, and then stared off into space. “In the admittedly short time between hearing a blood curdling scream and finding myself in this hallway, I must concede that the explanation given never graced my list of expectations.”

“Indeed.” Luna nodded her head knowingly. “If it had, it would have ranked somewhere below expecting a cute puppy to suddenly brandish a hatchet and attack everything within its reach.”

Celestia cleared her throat and looked at Luna. “Ah, actually sister, that happened about three hundred years ago.”

“Really?” Luna asked, echoed by Harry, Cadence and Twilight.

“Yes.” Celestia nodded her head. “It was both gruesome and completely adorable at the same time.”

“Um.” Luna tried again. “In that case, your statement would have ranked below expecting a little white rabbit with a spatula harassing innocent ponies.”

Twilight shared a look with Rarity and then shared a glance with Celestia before looking at Fluttershy’s still-cowering form. “All right,” Twilight sighed, “it needs to be said and it might as well be me.” Turning to Luna she pointed a hoof. "It’s apparent that you have never been introduced to Angel Bunny.”

At the edge of a forest, a bear hurried along. The rat held loosely in its jaws spoke of a successful hunt.

The white rabbit riding on its back defied rational explanation.

“Ah suppose it’s ‘bout time to be heading back,” Apple Bloom said as the credits rolled on the screen.

“Hermione said there is a second and a third part to this movie,” Lavender protested.

“That will just have to wait until next time,” Emma said from where she sat petting Magah. “It is getting late.”

“Awww,” Lavender complained as the rest of the herd stood and started stretching after sitting for so long.

“Two movies in one night is a good stopping point,” Hermione said. “We got no studying done today.”

“Life’s not just studying, Hermione,” Scootaloo said. “You’ve got to have fun, too.”

“But studying is fun,” Hermione countered.

“Not for everyone,” Dean rebutted.

“Thank you for inviting us over,” Sweetie Belle said diplomatically, “and thank you for the pizza.”

The rest of the herd also expressed their thanks, following Sweetie’s lead.

Emma surveyed the clutter of crust-filled pizza boxes and half-filled dishes of apple products. She was willing to bet that Ron and Apple were separated at birth; the hair color and the appetites were just too similar to be a coincidence. “You are very welcome. We just love having Hermione bring her friends over. Meeting Magah was exhilarating as well.”

“What are we going to do with the leftovers?” Seamus asked.

“Let me get some foil to wrap up the pie and lasagna. You can take them with you,” Emma said, standing and heading for the stairs. “I’ll clean your sister’s dishes and send them back with her owl.”

“Hooo,” said the owl, still resting on the couch back.

“I think he’s waiting for those letters,” Neville commented.

“Don’t worry, we’ll have Philomena deliver them tomorrow,” Sweetie told the owl.


“It’s getting late," Twilight said. “We should probably return Harry to his school.”

“Yes please,” said Harry. His masculinity was being stretched to its limits. He was surrounded by cute, candy-colored ponies whose appearance was a siren's call to transform, just so that he could properly pet and cuddle and . . . He closed his eyes as he struggled to contain himself; he was a bloke, darn it! He was positive that looking into a mirror would leave him trapped like Narcissus.

“We need Discord to do that,” Fluttershy said, “and he doesn’t seem to want to come right now. I wonder what he’s up to.”

***** WARNING ***** WARNING ***** WARNING *****




REDIRECTING . . . . . . . . .

“Hey!” Discord’s voice called from somewhere in the background, “Stop that! You’re giving them the wrong ideas!”





***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL *****

Theoretically, Emma could have waited for the next morning to finish cleaning. In reality, if she had, she would have managed very little sleep. Emma did not like leaving messes.

Despite the clutter the children had managed in such a short time, the matter was resolved quickly. Her daughter had not entertained in a long time, and Emma was overjoyed that she was making friends at her new school. Unfortunately, Hermione’s earlier childhood had been a lonely time as her peers were intimidated by her intelligence and her dedication. She was lucky to get any of them to talk to her, much less try making friends.

Humming to herself, Emma noticed that the children had left something important behind. On the bookshelf rested a necklace.

“So?” Luna nudged Twilight as they walked back to the palace, “Angel Bunny?”

“The most inappropriately named white rabbit in Equestrian history,” Twilight said with a grimace.

***** WARNING ***** WARNING ***** WARNING *****





Pinkie Pie looked up, ”What do you mean by the eye dee ten tea protocol? Look, nothing will happen.”


“Ooops!”. Pinkie murmured.

***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL *****

Dan was just entering the kitchen, after taking out the trash, when he heard his wife’s voice call up from the still open basement door, “Dan!”

“Yes dear?!” he called back, “Are you okay? You sound a little horse.”

“Would you please come down here and help me?” Emma called. “I can’t get this off with my hooves!”

***** WARNING ***** WARNING ***** WARNING *****



***PROCEEDING TO GROAN >>>>click!<<<< . . . . . ...

Everypony’s a critic . .

***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL ***** NOMINAL *****

Sweetie Belle slowly awoke. She was content, if not very coherent. A smothering source of warmth blanketed her, a totally unexpected sensation that immediately brought her to full wakefulness.

Shoving the source, she grunted, “Magah! Get off; you’re way too heavy!”

“Harry, it’s time to wake up.”

Harry slowly opened his eyes, blinking at the invasive morning light infusing his room in the pony palace. Smiling, he recognized the voice. He was still in his pony form, curled under a mound of blankets atop a mattress as soft as a cloud. A wide yawn gave way to a contented smile; here was one he owed much to.

He turned toward the voice. “Good Morneeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!” It seemed that pegasus colts could hit some rather high notes.

“Is there something the matter?” Discord peered at the shivering colt.

“Waa waa waaa.”

“Oh.” Discord leaned back and snapped his claws. “That’s right; this is your first time seeing me in my true majestic form.”

“UUU uuu oh.” Harry agreed, trembling like a leaf.

“Well, then.” Discord faded from view, but his lips lingered with his voice. “I’ll just leave you to recover. We can try this again in a few, when you're more awake.”

Harry stared at the spot the dragon thing had occupied. Awake less than two minutes and he had already learned two very interesting facts.

First, it appeared Discord wasn’t a pony. Second, pegasi could evidently stick to the ceiling, using their hooves.

. . .

. . .

How had he managed to get up here, anyway?

Morning had broken in the quiet London suburb. The night had been blissfully sleepless as the couple shared a new toy, one that had given them a spark they had not experienced since their honeymoon.

“Okay,” Dan said, “I’ve been like this long enough. I just want to enjoy my morning coffee.”

“But you're so cute!” Emma ran her hands through her husband’s dark yellow fur and cuddled closer. “Let’s just have a bit of a lay in; I’ll get you your coffee latter.”

“Fine,” he relented, “but it’s your turn to wear it.”

To Parvati's dismay, Magah had proven remarkably adept at sniffing out magic as the now-transfigured unicorn made her escape from the trunk. It took every last bit of speed to bar the dorm's door before Magah could give a refresher course in the history of Coventry.

Parvati glared balefully at Magah, only to receive an innocent smile in return. “Listen, either the robe goes on or the necklace comes off. We’re going to breakfast soon, and you simply can’t go in the buff.”

“Goo,” Magah returned helpfully.

After knocking and receiving permission, the earth pony maid entered the room and spotted the child she was supposed to gather for breakfast.

“I see that you are up already,” she said approvingly; she had suspected that she would have had to wake him.

“Yeah,” he agreed, nodding, “a little too up for my tastes.”

“Well, you could just come down here.”

He looked at the height he had to traverse, “How?”

“You do have wings,” she reminded him. “I understand that’s common for pegasi.”

“Oh yeah.” He stretched the aforementioned limbs. “I forgot about them.”

“How do you manage to forget about wings?” the maid asked.

Harry marveled at pegasus aerodynamics.


“Also,” she said, moving forward to assist, “it helps if you don't point straight down.”

“Noted,” the colt said from where he was sprawled out on the floor.

“Ah.” Discord was happy to see all the princesses and the three Element Bearers were in the dining room. “You’re all here. It occurred to me that I should inform you before taking Harry back to school.”

“Could you not wait until after breakfast?” Cadence asked. “We didn’t have much time with him before he fell asleep. He had a long day yesterday.”

“I’m afraid it would be best if I got him back before certain parties realize he’s gone.” Discord shrugged. “Alice has pretty much closed any loopholes, but I want to be able to pull him out from under a certain bearded nose if the worst comes to pass.”

“That seems terribly premeditated of you,” Luna noted. “Suspiciously structured for one such as you.”

“My dear Luna.” Discord wrapped his body around Luna’s barrel and hugged her head close to his. “I am the spirit of chaos.”

“We are aware.” Luna tolerated the close contact.

“As such, the moment you try to define me, you’ve misdefined me,” Discord said cheerfully, “especially when you use my previous actions as a basis for that definition.”

“How perfectly convenient, for you,” Luna noted.

“It is kind of in the job description.” Discord grinned madly.

“Wait a minute!” Twilight objected, “Isn’t a job description defining you by definition?”

“Yes, it is,” Discord agreed.

“So, isn’t a job description misdefining you?” Twilight glared at Discord.

“Yes.” Discord pulled away from Luna to wrap himself around Twilight instead. “I see you understand.”

“But you just contradicted yourself,” she complained.

“Exactly,” Discord concurred.

“That’s just, just, just,” Twilight stammered.

“Chaotic?” Discord asked.

“Well,” she admitted, “yes.”

“And she sees the light.” Discord cheered.

The girls filed into the boys' dorm room, intent on waking the colts. They stopped just inside the door and looked around.

"You know,” Scootaloo said, “it might have helped if they had keyed us to their trunks.”

“Oh yeah!” Emma moaned ecstatically, “Right there! Harder! Faster! Harder! Faster!”

Dan interrupted his rhythm long enough to shake his hands and say, “Who knew you could get so much enjoyment out of having your ears scratched?”

“I’m back!” Discord announced as he popped into existence.


Watching the maid, Harry noted that earth ponies seemed to lack the ability to stick to ceilings, despite their impressive jumping skills. “Welcome back,” he said. "I’m sorry for my earlier rudeness. I just expected you to be another pony.”

“Tsk, tsk, my boy.” Discord flipped his paw back and forth dismissively. “You’ve had a lot thrown at you recently. I’m surprised you’re handling it so well.”

“I’ve had a great week. It’s like all my wishes have been answered,” Harry trumpeted, raising back on his hind legs and pumping his forelegs as he spread his wings for balance. “I’m just afraid it’s all just a dream and I’m going to wake up and still be in my cupboard under the stairs.”

Discord’s smile disappeared. “I will not let that happen. Rarity will not let that happen. The princesses will not let that happen. Now, you have friends who will stand by your side. You have adults that will protect you. You are a strong one, but you are not just one. You are one of a herd of many.”

“I’m, I’m . . .” Harry pawed at the bedroom floor. “I don’t have to go back to the Dursley’s?”

“No,” Discord said. “You’re not going to be forced to go back.”

Harry stared at the floor. “I don’t want to go back.”

“You won’t.” Discord stopped himself from reaching out with a comforting claw that would not have been appreciated.

“I," Harry whispered, “I hate them.”

The maid, still in the room, gasped loudly. The weight of the words struck her more painfully than a physical blow. Even Discord winced.

“They always tell me I’m worthless,” Harry continued, lying down where he stood, “that I don’t deserve the food they waste on me.”

The maid rushed over to lie beside him and offer him support.

“I don’t know how many times I’ve sat in my cupboard and could hear them laughing in the family room. They were happy together and I was not welcome.”

Discord lowered himself to get closer as the colt continued to look at the floor.

“I don’t want to go back.”

“You won’t have to.” Discord assured him.

“I like being called Harry. I can remember when I thought my name was ‘boy’.”

The maid started shivering with suppressed rage.

“At Hogwarts, I’m welcome. I’m part of the laughter.”

Discord remained quiet and let the colt continue to open up.

“At Hogwarts, I eat more in one day than I’m normally allowed in a whole week.”

The maid sucked in a breath and noticed just how small the colt beside her was.

“I don’t want to go back.” Harry lifted his gaze and looked at Discord. “What do I do now?”

“I won’t let things go back to the way they were,” Discord vowed. “As for you, with all that emotion you have bottled up, I suggest you start by just letting yourself go and having a good cry.”

Harry looked at him without tears, “I suppose I’ve forgotten how. Is it too late for me?”

Seamus and Neville watched as Scootaloo and Lavender danced the Hopak on Ron’s trunk to no avail. They tapped their feet to the drum cadence of "Auch Sprach Zarathustra" as Parvati and Apple Bloom pounded it on Dean’s.

“I have a question,” Seamus said after a few minutes. “Can Philomena flame you into a trunk?”

Scootaloo stopped mid-jump, and the rest of the girl’s collectively face palmed.

“Harry,” Discord said, “I’m going to send you to Hogwarts now. Don’t worry about being sent back to the Dursley’s. Right now, no one has the right to make you do that. All you need to do is go and enjoy your time with your herdmates.”

Harry wordlessly nodded his head. A small smile starting to form on his lips.

Discord snapped his claws, and the colt was gone.

“Ahem!” Discord looked down to locate the feminine voice. The maid, who had taken in the story, continued. “I need you to take me to the Dursleys.” She put on her best puppy dog eyes and gave a quivering pout.

“That’s not fair,” Discord whimpered.

“P-p-p- please.” She pleaded. “Somepony is about to get hurt, and I’m sure you would much prefer it be them rather than you.”

“Um . . . bye!” Discord disappeared, proving that you can teach an old draconequus new tricks.

A crowd of first-years waited with bated breath in front of Ron's trunk. They knew he was a heavy sleeper, but this was taking far too long. The anticipation was becoming unbearable. At long last, the lid to Ron's truck popped open, allowing Ron's protests to reach those outside the trunk. Parvati appeared first. She stepped over the lip of the trunk backward, dragging Ron by his armpits. Scootaloo followed, carrying Ron by his legs.

Ron continued his vocabulary lesson as the girls set him down. Hermione noticed something was amiss. “Girls,” she said, “why didn’t you let him get dressed? He can’t go to breakfast in just his boxers.”

“He can’t?” Scootaloo asked.

“No, he most assuredly cannot.” Lavender backed up Hermione.

“Okay.” With the decisiveness of Alexander the Great, Scootaloo rectified the situation.

“Hey!” Ron cried.

“Scootaloo!” Hermione cried out, as Lavender hid her face in her hands and Parvati blushed.

“What?” Scootaloo asked innocently. “He’s not in just his boxers anymore.”

In a daze, Harry climbed the stairs to exit his trunk. Human once again, he reflected on everything that had happened since classes had ended yesterday. Lifting the lid, he saw that the rest of the herd was there, staring at Ron’s trunk.

“Hello,” Harry said, startling everyone.

“Harry,” Ginny cooed, “when did you get back?”

“Just now.” Harry climbed out of his chest and went to stand with his friends, his herd.

“How’d it go?” Apple Bloom asked as Ginny and Hermione wrapped Harry in a hug.

“It was an experience,” Harry answered.

“You got a ring like ours,” Sweetie noted happily.

“Yeah.” Harry nodded.

“Let’s see then.” Scootaloo insisted, hopping around the hug group.

“After breakfast,” Harry said, “I’m starving.”

“I kin relate to that,” Apple Bloom agreed.

“Okay, I’m dressed.” The lid of Ron’s trunk popped open once again. “Harry, hey mate, how’d it go?”

“I’m still trying to decide on that myself,” Harry admitted.

“I wish you were able to stay with us yesterday,” Neville said. "We had a lot of fun."

“Yeah,” Lavender agreed, “except for the first movie.”

“It wasn’t that bad.” Dean complained, drawing glares from several others.

“I have a question,” Harry said.

“Yes?” Seamus said, “What’s that?”

“Who’s the lady bursting out of her robes?”

“Geeeeeeem!” Magah greeted the last missing foal buoyantly, nuzzling him as she checked for injuries.

“Aaaaaah.” Dan gibbered as Emma ran her hand down his length. Each stroke brought another episode of pure ecstasy. Sticking his tongue out he lavished at her touch.

Emma, in turn was giddy over the pleasure she was causing her husband. She was never going to be able to look at another brush again in the same manner as before.

It was not a happy time in the tiny London apartment. Dressed in her best outfit, Elisa Bates gathered her daughter and prepared to head for the bus stop. She had to get to the bottom of the nonsense she had been hearing. Little green men did not just hand over large amounts of money for no discernable reason.

Whatever it was, it could not be on the up and up. She was terrified her daughter was being set up for something, something highly illegal and almost impossible to get out of. She was terrified that she would have to take the money and flee the country with her daughter. She was terrified she and her daughter were about to be sold into slavery. She was terrified that Abagail had somehow stolen the money. She was terrified.

Unable to hide the trembling of her hand, she opened her front door just in time to find an individual was in the process of raising their own hand to knock.

Spooked at the unanticipated intrusion, Elisa stared at the woman in the Victorian Era dress. After blinking owlishly for a moment, the fleeing mother said, “Yes?”

“Hello, I am here for Abagail Bates,” the woman said, confirming Elisa’s worst fears that her daughter had gotten in over her head.

“Who.” Elisa bit her lip and tried again. “Who are you?”

“I apologize; I didn’t mean to alarm you,” the woman said. “I am Professor McGonagall, and I’m here to introduce you to a new world.”

Eyes narrowing, Elisa asked, "What kind of world."

Abagail smiled at the professor's response. "Do you believe in magic?"

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