"Eek!" Daphne squealed the next morning at breakfast. She was sitting opposite Theo and Teddie, and beside Blaise. The three looked up at their friend as she stared at Teddie with wide, frightened eyes.
"What?" Teddie asked, holding a spoon three-quarters of the way to her mouth.
"Correct me if I am wrong, Teddie, but is your hair moving?" Daphne asked, staring at her friend's red hair. It seemed that the black hair tie holding Teddie's hair up was revolving in a circle.
Teddie paused and then started to laugh.
Daphne pouted, folding her arms in mock anger. "It's not funny!" she said. "What is going on with your hair tie?"
Reaching up, Teddie hooked her fingers into the black band and carefully disentangled it from her ponytail. As she moved away, Theo, Blaise, and Daphne realised that the band wasn't a band at all, but a small black snake.
"Why do you have a snake in your hair?" Blaise asked. "Is that some muggle fashion?"
Teddie shook her head. "Guys, meet Morgana," she said, holding up the corn snake as it wound itself through her fingers. "She's one of three snakes that I own. Professor Snape said that it's not uncommon for students to bring their own pets to school, and I didn't really trust my snakes to buy myself a cat, owl, or toad."
"You own three snakes?" Daphne asked, leaning forward.
"Yeah - Priscilla is a Ball Python, she's too big to have brought to Hogwarts, this is Morgana, she's a corn snake, she only grows to about 4-5 feet in length, and her brother is Merlin," said Teddie.
"And where is Merlin, exactly?" Theo asked, glancing Teddie over to see if he could see any other black moving shapes.
Teddie smiled and shifted Morgana to her free hand. The snake instantly coiled through her fingers. "You see my wrist?" she asked, indicating to the second black band on her arm. "That's Merlin. He's a little shy around strangers and prefers to be around my wrist rather than in my hair. Morgana's a little more curious. Would you like to hold her?"
"Yeah," Theo grinned.
"Hold your hand flat," Teddie told him.
Theo did as she instructed and she brushed her knuckles against the side of his palm. Instantly, Morgana slithered out of Teddie's fingers and across Theo's hand. She weaved towards his thumb and coiled around it, her tail sliding between his other fingers.
"I think she likes you," Teddie said, smiling at Theo.
"She's really pretty," Daphne said. She reached across the table and run her finger down Morgana's back, feeling the rough scales under against her skin.
"Thanks," Teddie grinned. "Do you want to try and hold Merlin, Daph?"
Daphne nodded and pulled back from Morgana, Teddie held out her wrist and carefully pried Merlin from her arm, the snake hissed as he was disturbed and coiled himself around Teddie's fingers of her free hand.
"Merlin, be nice," Teddie said, stroking the snakes head. He relaxed under her touch and slithered out of her grasp, and into Daphne's.
Blaise frowned. "Did he just listen to you?" he asked.
"Strange, huh?" Teddie asked, leaning back in her seat. She wasn't nervous about Merlin and Morgana being out of her possession, she trusted Daphne and Theo enough to be gentle with them, and corn snakes were venomous at any costs, so even if they did bite, her friends were safe from harm.
"Strange," Blaise echoed.
Spooning more cereal into her bowl, Teddie smiled at Daphne as Merlin coiled around her wrist and tucked his head down near his tail. His appearance was now that of a simple black bracelet.
"Is that normal?" Daphne asked, slightly afraid.
"He's okay," Teddie said, shaking her head. "That's his way of telling you he is comfortable. I can take him back if you're unsure."
"No, it's okay," Daphne said. She smiled and returned to her breakfast. The slight pressure around her left wrist was strange, given that she wasn't used to wearing anything on her left hand, but it was oddly comforting at the same time.
Theo suddenly handed Morgana back to Teddie. "I think she's starting to get restless," he said, as Morgana tried to slither up his arm.
Teddie giggled and took back the female. She carefully lifted Morgana to her head, and her friends watched as the snake slithered back into her hair. Its scales clung to Teddie's red strands until Morgana coiled herself around her ponytail once more, and became motionless.
"That… was the strangest thing I have ever seen," Blaise said, staring at the snake. "But again, oddly intriguing. I remember you saying you had a fascination with snakes, but I never expected you to actually have snakes."
"You say you have a ball python at home?" Daphne asked.
"Yeah, Priscilla," Teddie answered.
"What's she like?"
Teddie shrugged. "She's my baby," she said. "She was the first snake I ever owned. She was feeling a little under the weather before I came to Hogwarts, I hope she's doing better. My parents and Mason will take care of her, but sometimes she'll only let me near her, especially if she's not feeling well."
"Does she understand you, too?" Blaise asked.
"What do you mean, do I talk to her like I do Morgana and Merlin?" Teddie asked. Blaise nodded. "Of course I talk to her."
"Does she listen to you?"
Teddie nodded. "My parents always said I was special because Priscilla always did what I said," she said. "They used to tease me about being the snake whisperer."
"You can talk to snakes?"
Teddie, Theo, Blaise, and Daphne looked up as Marcus Flint joined them. He was accompanied by several boys that Teddie recognised from Platform 9 ¾.
"They don't talk back if that's what you mean," said Teddie. "Take, Priscilla, for example. I'll ask her every morning if she's hungry and wants breakfast, and it's like she nods at me. Merlin's the same," she pointed at the snake around Daphne's wrist. "He was being very rude just now and I told him to stop and to be nice, and he then went straight to Daphne."
The boy behind Marcus, Teddie recognised him as the boy named 'Pucey' frowned and leaned forward, talking to Marcus in a low voice. "You don't think she -" he started.
"Think I'm what?" Teddie interrupted him. "If you're going to talk about me, please talk to my face. I don't appreciate being talked about behind my back."
The boy smirked. "I was just contemplating the idea that you may be a Parselmouth," he said.
"Parselmouth," Pucey repeated. "It's a rare magical ability that allows a person to communicate with snakes. Salazar Slytherin was a Parselmouth, he could talk to snakes. It's why our emblem is a snake."
Teddie furrowed her brow. "I doubt that I am," she said. "As I've already said, they don't talk back to me. I talk to them like I would any pet animal. If I had a cat or even an owl, I'd probably talk to them too. It's a human instinct to form connections with animals, it helps them to trust you and therefore bond with you."
As breakfast progress, Professor Snape swept down the Slytherin table and handed out timetables. Leaning closer together, Theo, Blaise, Daphne, and Teddie examined their lessons plan.
"History of Magic, Charms, Transfiguration, and double Potions," Blaise said, sliding his finger across the parchment. "Most classes are with Gryffindors."
"I guess we're about to see first hand what Professor Snape meant about being targets at Hogwarts," Teddie said, flipping over her parchment. "Hey, look, it's a map!"
"The map's there to make sure you don't get lost," Marcus said. "It's quite nerve-wracking trying to navigate the castle on your first day, and the last thing you want to worry about his being late. I'd also consider giving yourselves a ten-minute head start, just so if you do take a wrong turning, you don't turn up too late for class."
The four first years nodded.
"Should we go get our History of Magic, Charms books, and Transfiguration things?" Daphne asked. "We can get our books and cauldron for double potions after lunch."
The others agreed, bid Marcus and his friends a good morning and goodbye, and headed out of the hall. As they were leaving, Parkinson and Malfoy were entering.
"Mudblood," Malfoy sneered as Teddie passed by.
Without warning, Teddie whipped around and slammed her fist into Malfoy's nose. The boy cried out in alarm and stumbled back, tripping over his robe and hitting the ground with a thud.
"Draco!" Pansy cried, kneeling beside him.
"I don't know what that means," Teddie snapped, standing over Malfoy. "But if you call me anything other than my first or last name, then you're going to get more than just a punch in the face."
Daphne looked over her shoulder and saw Sierra Waterstone leaving the door leading to the corridor beyond the Entrance Hall, she was accompanied by Grayson Farley, and she looked furious.
"It wasn't Teddie's fault," Blaise said, jumping between Sierra and Teddie. "Malfoy called her a 'mudblood'."
Sierra's face turned purple with rage, even Grayson's eyes flashed with flames of anger. "Mr Malfoy, what do you have to say for yourself?" Sierra demanded. "Do either of you remember Professor Snape's rules from last night?"
Teddie and Draco remained silent, each glaring at one another.
"You're lucky that school has yet to start, and there are no emeralds in our hourglass," said Sierra. "I hate docking points from my own house, but I will if necessary. Mr Malfoy, that language is not something you hear in civilised conversations, especially when directed at a fellow Slytherin if I hear you calling Miss Green it again you will not like the consequences." She turned to Teddie. "Be as it may, physical violence is not tolerated against other students. If you're having trouble with anyone, Miss Green, please see a member of staff, a prefect, or the Head Boy and Girl. I will also punish you for any violence against another student. Do you understand?"
Teddie tore her gaze away from Malfoy and met Sierra's. "Yes," she said.
"Good. Now, get to class."
"We haven't had breakfast," Pansy said.
Sierra threw her a dark look. "I don't really care where you go, Miss Parkinson, but remove yourself from the Entrance Hall, now!" she snapped.
With one final glare at Teddie and friends, Parkinson and Malfoy entered the hall, Crabbe and Goyle trailing behind.
"And you four?" Grayson asked.
"We're going to get our school books," Daphne said.
"Then go, now," Grayson said.
Theo grabbed Teddie's wrist and pulled her across the Entrance Hall, Daphne and Blaise hurrying along in their wake.
The rest of the day seemed to pass without incident. Malfoy and Parkinson gave Teddie a wide berth after the interaction in the Entrance Hall, and Theo, Blaise, and Daphne made sure that Teddie had no contact with their housemates.
Their first lesson, History of Magic it seemed was easily the most boring lessons taught at Hogwarts. The teacher was a ghost, Professor Binns, who had fallen asleep in his chair several hundred years ago, got up to go to class and left his body behind.
Professor Binns didn't even notice that he had a class most of the time, as he droned on and on about ancient witches and wizards, expecting them all to just scribble down dates and names. Most of the time, Teddie and Daphne could be found playing with Morgana and Merlin as Theo and Blaise snoozed in their chairs.
History of Magic was, by far, the worst lesson to have first thing in the morning.
Charms, however, seemed a more promising lesson. It was taught by Professor Flitwick, a tiny little wizard that had to stand on a stack of books just to see over his desk, He took the register at the beginning of class, and toppled backwards when he reached a specific name.
"Harry Potter," he squeaked, before tumbling backwards.
All heads, including Teddie's, turned to find the boy in question. His face burned as the spotlight hit him, and he looked like a deer caught in headlights. Teddie still found it strange that this mere eleven-year-old was famous in the wizarding world. Daphne had told her some of the stories behind Harry Potter, but not all of it. She'd have to remember to ask later.
After Charms, the Slytherins had Transfiguration with Professor McGonagall, she was the Head of Gryffindor House, and the same witch that had greeted them in the Entrance Hall on the night of their arrival. If back then, Teddie hadn't have thought Professor McGonagall was a strict witch, she was definitely a firm believer now.
The minute they had taken their seats, Professor McGonagall began to lecture them on what she expected of them in her class.
"Transfiguration is some of the most complex and dangerous magic you will learn at Hogwarts," Professor McGonagall said. "Anyone messing around in my class will leave and not come back. You have been warned."
She then changed her desk into a pig and changed it back within a blink of an eye.
After Transfiguration was lunch. Teddie and friends entered the Great Hall to find most of the upper Slytherin students were already present at the table. They quickly took up four seats beside Marcus and his friends and fell into discussion easily with them.
"How's your first day been?" Marcus asked Teddie.
"It's been alright." Teddie nodded. "History of Magic is a bit of a bore, but otherwise everything else has gone fine."
"What happened after breakfast?" Adrian asked. Teddie had learned his first name from Daphne, apparently, their fathers were friends outside of school. "Sierra came in looking furious, muttering something about bloody first years."
Teddie averted her gaze.
"We saw Malfoy, too," said another of Marcus' friends. His name was Bole. Derrick Bole. "Grayson had to perform the Scourgify charm to clean up the blood on his uniform.
Marcus eyed Teddie. "Do you know what happened?" he asked.
"He called me a...Mudblood?" said Teddie, it was more of an uncertain question than a statement. She still didn't know what the word meant but it seemed her new friends did.
"He called you that vulgar name?" Adrian asked.
"Yeah, so I punched him," Teddie replied. "I told him that I didn't know what he had called me, but if he called me anything other than my first and last names, I'd start throwing more than just punches. Sierra caught me and gave us both a scolding."
Marcus couldn't help but smirk.
Teddie furrowed her brow. "What?" she asked.
"Nothing," said Marcus. "I'm just thinking about me telling you Muggleborns are usually taken advantage of at Hogwarts. But, in all honesty, I don't think Hogwarts knows what's hit her since you've walked through her doors. You're definitely not a Muggleborn to pick a fight with."
"That wasn't a compliment," Derrick said.
"I know," Teddie said. "But I'm going to take it as one."
The group laughed.
After lunch, the first year Slytherins had Defence Against the Dark Arts with Gryffindors, followed by double Potions. Teddie and Theo run down to the Slytherin common room to collect their afternoon supplies, and picked up Daphne and Blaise's too, before heading off to the Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom on the second floor.
Everyone had been looking forward to this lesson all day, and therefore had turned up five minutes early in order to get a good seat. Daphne, Blaise, Theo, and Teddie didn't join the squabble to get a front seat and instead chose two desks in the middle of the classroom. They sat down and were in the middle of pulling out their books, notebooks, and quills when Quirrell entered the room.
Unfortunately, the class turned out to be a bit of a joke. The classroom smelled heavily of garlic, which Quirrell explained was to ward off a vampire he had met in Romania over the summer and was afraid would be coming back for him at some point. His turban, he added, had been given to him by an African prince as a thank you for getting rid of a troublesome zombie.
The stories seemed a little far-fetched, and Teddie wasn't sure if she believed them fully or not. Despite the comic relief of his stories, Teddie found Professor Quirrell to be rather strange. His stutter didn't seem to be natural, but forced, and often or not she would find him staring at her when the rest of the class were jotting down what he had put on the board.
Thankfully, he didn't give them homework.
"That was strange," said Teddie, as she and her friends left the classroom at the end of the lesson. "Am I the only one that gets a strange feeling from him?"
Daphne, Theo, and Blaise shook their heads.
"He seems to have a weird fascination with you, too, Ted," said Blaise. "I noticed him staring a few times. Wonder what that's about?"
"Thank god someone else noticed," Teddie said, sighing in relief. "I thought I was the only one. I wasn't going to say anything because I didn't want to sound paranoid."
Blaise shook his head. "Nah, you weren't the only one," he assured her.
"I suppose he's not going to come straight out and tell me why he was staring at me, is he?" Teddie asked.
"You'll be lucky," said Daphne.
"If it keeps happening, or if you feel uncomfortable with it, we can report it to Professor Snape," said Theo.
Teddie smiled at him and shook her head. "Nah, it's okay," she said. "Besides, he seems pretty harmless. I'm pretty sure I could take him."
"Do you think of anything other than fighting?"
"It's not fighting, it's self-defence!"
Blaise shook his head and led them through the door to the dungeons. Instead of continuing straight on towards the Slytherin common room, however, they turned right and headed down an unfamiliar corridor towards the Potions classrooms.
Professor Snape, like Flitwick, started the class with a register. He looked up at each person when they answered their names, although his gaze lingered a little longer on Harry Potter when he reached his name and proceeded to make a huge scene about his 'celebrity status', much to the amusement of Draco Malfoy and his cronies.
Once he was satisfied everyone was present, Snape put down his quill and looked out at his students. "You are here to learn the subtle science and exact art of potion-making," he began, and Teddie realised, just like Professor McGonagall, Professor Snape had the ability to keep a room silent without effort. "As there is little foolish wand-waving here, many of you will hardly believe this is magic. I don't expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins, bewitching the mind, ensnaring the senses, I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death…"
Silence followed the lecture.
Then Professor Snape snapped at one student in particular.
"Potter," he said, his voice sharp as his gaze found the student in question. "What would I get if I added powdered root of asphodel to an infusion of wormwood?"
Teddie leaned forward on her desk to stare across the room at the boy she knew to be Harry Potter if the look on his face was anything to go by, she was willing to bet he had no idea what Professor Snape was talking about.
A bushy-haired girl in front of Harry rocked in her seat as she thrust her hand into the air. She went unnoticed by Professor Snape.
"I don't know, sir," Harry said.
"Tut tut - fame clearly isn't everything, is it, Potter?" Snape asked, his lips curling into a sneer. "Let's try again. Where would you look if I told you to find me a bezoar?"
The bushy-haired girl forced her hand further into the air, but still, Snape ignored her.
Teddie noticed that Draco Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle were visibly shaking as they hid their sniggers behind their hands.
"I don't know, sir," said Harry.
"Thought you wouldn't open a book before coming, eh, Potter?" Snape asked. "What is the difference between monkshood and wolfsbane?"
The bushy-haired girl stood from her seat, her hand stretching towards the ceiling.
"I don't know," Harry said quietly, before quickly adding, "I think Hermione does though, why don't you ask her?"
A few people, Teddie noticed they were Gryffindors, laughed. Meanwhile, the Slytherin's stared at Harry with wide-eyes. Was he crazy or just plain stupid?
Professor Snape, however, did not look pleased.
"Sit down," Snape snapped at the bushy-haired girl. She took her seat, looking deeply hurt. "For your information, Potter, asphodel and wormwood make a sleeping potion so powerful it is known as the Draught of the Living Death. A bezoar is a stone taken from the stomach of a goat and will save you from most poisons. As for monkshood and wolfsbane, they are the same plant, which also goes by the name of aconite."
He paused, looking around at the other students.
"Well?" Snape said, sneering. "Why aren't you all copying this down?"
Teddie scrambled for her quill, ink, and a scrap piece of parchment. She started to scribble down what Professor Snape had just said, doing her best to remember the words as they easily evaded her mind. It was at times like this she wished she had Mason's thought process.
Over the scratching of quills, Snape said: "Gryffindors, a point will be taken from your hourglass for your housemate's cheek."
Teddie glanced up to see him glaring at Harry. She ducked her head as he looked her way, and returned to her work.
Potions didn't get any better for the Gryffindors after their initial confrontation with Professor Snape. One boy, Neville Longbottom, seemed to have a panic attack and exploded his cauldron, covering himself in his potion and resulting in angry red boils blooming all over his arms and face.
Professor Snape ordered another boy, Seamus Finnigan, to take him to the hospital wing to see Madam Pomfrey. Professor Snape then proceeded to snap at Harry Potter for not helping Neville, a feat that even Teddie found unfair, seeing as Harry seemed to be struggling with his own potion, and shouldn't have needed to concern himself with Neville.
It was no doubt in Teddie's mind that the Gryffindors couldn't wait to get out of the dungeons, and her thoughts were confirmed when the final bell rang, and the Gryffindors, led by Harry and Ron, speed-walked from the classroom in one big group.
The Slytherins waited and then left in their own groups.
"Miss Green, a word, please," Professor Snape called as Teddie reached the door.
Teddie sighed and turned her friends. "I'll meet you in the common room," she said.
Theo, Blaise, and Daphne nodded and left the classroom. Teddie closed the door and turned back to her head of house.
"Miss Waterstone paid me a visit before lunch," Snape said without looking up, "She has informed me that you and Mr Malfoy were fighting this morning in the Entrance Hall."
"Did she tell you what he called me?" Teddie asked.
"Then why isn't he being scolded, too?"
"I will speak with Mr Malfoy later," Snape said, looking up at her finally. "The fact of the matter remains, Miss Green, is that your disregard for the rules set out very clearly to you. Have you already forgotten what I said last night about unifying with your housemates outside of the Slytherin common room?"
Teddie clenched her hands into fists. "I don't see why I should feel the need to defend people who have no intention of defending me," she snapped. "Both Malfoy and Parkinson hate me, and I hate them. Parkinson made a huge fuss last night before me being a Muggleborn in Slytherin, and even went on to ask if she could sleep in a different room when she realised we would be sharing a dorm."
"I will be having a similar conversation with Miss Parkinson and Mr Malfoy about their actions today, I do understand that you are not completely at fault," said Professor Snape. "But since both Miss Waterstone and myself have had to remind you, several times, to stop fighting with your housemates, and your father has insisted that you keep your temper in check. If you cannot follow these simple rules, I must infuse a punishment."
"I can't promise that I can keep my temper in check," Teddie said, shaking her head, "or that I won't get into any more fights. That's like promising to get blood out of a stone - impossible! I can, however, promise to try and steer clear of Parkinson and Malfoy, when possible."
"I do trust that you do not want to be expelled from Hogwarts during your first year?"
Teddie shook her head.
"Then, you will do well to remember your promise," said Snape. "As I have said, I shall be speaking with Miss Parkinson and Mr Malfoy also. You may go."
Teddie left the classroom before Snape changed his mind about punishing her. She hurried down the corridor, took a sharp left, and continued on towards the Slytherin common room.
In her hurry, Teddie missed the figure watching her from a dark alcove.
Most of these are pre-written. That's why you're getting a chapter a day.
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