- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
The First Meeting
It was a cold, windy winter day. The snow crunched beneath my feet as I walked along the busy streets of Hogsmead. The snow was blowing on my face and my cheeks, nose and ears were flushed and numb from the cold. This was only my second visit to Hogsmead this year. Hermione said it was very important that I come today. She told me to meet her Harry and Ron at a small pub called Hogs Head. She told me to tell as many people to come along.
As I passed all the shops I had an urge to go inside and escape from the cold but I knew I had to get to Hogs Head. I envied the little 3rd years enjoying their sweets in Honeyduke's. The broad grins on their faces as the ate the candy made me smile too. I remember all the good times in Honeyduke's. I remember the first time I tried Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans and unfortunately got an earwax flavour. I remember when Harry would sneak in to Hogsmead through Honeyduke's cellar. He would wear his invisibility cloak and we would sneak around the village. The best memory that little sweet shop held was when Fred and George Weasley, the identical trouble makers, dared Ron, their little brother, and I to an eating contest. Ron and I walked out of that shop so full of candy that if anybody even mentioned Honeyduke's for the next week we would get nauseous.
I soon made it to Hogs Head. I walked in to the run down pub to find it abandon of people except for an old bar tender and an old hag sipping tea in the corner. I slowly made my way into the pub. I could feel the bar tender's eyes watching me walk in. I sat down at the bar. “What would yah like to order?” asked the bar tender. He had electrifying blue eyes and for a strange reason I felt like I had known him for a very long time.
“One butterbeer please.” I said staring down at the counter. The bar tender grunted and walked into the kitchen of the pub.
I looked around the old pub. The place looked very unsteady, almost as if one more person was to step foot into the pub the entire place would collapse. I saw a picture of a very pretty young girl in the corner of the room. She had long blonde hair and dreamy eyes. The girl resembled my friend Luna Lovegood and it was odd seeing the girls picture sitting in the pub. It seemed to sick out against all the cob webs and dust. There were some flowers around the frame and some candles underneath the picture. The resemblance to Luna seemed uncanny. The more I looked at the young girl's picture the more I began to think about who she was.
My mind was soon at work trying to unhinge who this girl was. I examined every detail in the painting. Why would an old man have a picture of a little girl sitting in his pub? I then noticed the girl had dark circles under her young eyes. The smile on her face seemed forced like she was trying hard to stay happy.
“That'll be three Sickles.” I turned around quick to the sound of the man's voice. He had put my mug of butterbeer on the counter with a hard thud. His eyes were squinted slightly as he looked down at me. I pulled out the money and placed it on the counter. He grabbed it quickly and shoved it into his pocket.
I drank my butterbeer in complete silence. The bar tender was now washing dishes but he kept shooting looks back at me. The butterbeer made me feel warm as I took sips out of the cup. I waited for somebody to show up in the pub. What felt like an hour later, Harry, Ron, and Hermione walked into the pub. The wind from outside had blown my dirty blonde hair back as Hermione opened the door.
“Hayley,” she said as she walked in and stomped the snow off the bottom of her shoes. “So glad you could make it. Is anybody else here yet?” she asked looking around.
“Nope not yet.” I replied.
“I doubt anybody will show up.” said Harry as he pulled off his coat and then decided against it when he felt how cold the pub was.
“Oh come on Harry,” said Ron, “Keep a positive attitude.” He walked over to the bar. “While we're waiting I think I'll try a firewhisky.”
“You are a perfect!” said Hermione sternly.
“Alright! I'll just get a butterbeer!” I couldn't help but laugh.
In the next hour Gryffindors, Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs showed up by the dozens. Luna Lovegood came walking in with a dreamy look in her eyes that made it look like she had accidentally walked into the pub. Ginny Weasley soon came in with her boyfriend Micheal Corner, who was receiving death glares from Ron. Neville Longbottom came with Dean Thomas who looked a little odd without Seamus Finnagin by his side. Neville smiled at me as I watched him walk in, his cheeks red from the cold outside. I couldn't help but to smile back and as I did so I felt a rising feeling in my chest. Ron's older brothers Fred and George walked in with there partner in crime Lee Jordan. They were having aloud discussion on Dungbombs which the bar tender did not appreciate. Cho Chang and her friend, Marietta Edgecomb walked into the pub arm and arm. I look over at Harry and noticed he was trying to fix his hair. He waved to Cho and turned a deep shade of red. Soon what seemed like everybody in the castle was stuffed into the little pub.
“Excuse me!” said Hermione who's voice got lost in the sound of everybody else. “Excuse me! Hello?! PLEASE BE QUIET!” This last part seemed very unexpected. The chatter among the crowd hushed down and soon died. “Thank you.” she said.
Everybody quickly found a place to sit. Some sat on stools and chairs while a few students were sitting on the floor or perched on top of tables. I sat down next to one of my best friend, Ginny Weasley. We soon found ourselves accompanied by our two other friends Luna Lovegood and Neville Longbottom.
“Um... Well hi.” said Hermione after everybody had found a seat. “I would just like to thank you all for coming here today. It really means a lot to-”
“Well why did you call us all here?” interrupted Zacharias Smith, a Hufflepuff boy with blonde hair and a stuck up nose.
“I was getting to that.” continued Hermione, who had seemed to lose all respect for him. “As you may know our world is facing a very great threat. The Ministry doesn't want the public knowing because they don't even believe it themselves. We thought that because of this threat we would need to learn Defense Against the Dark Arts the proper way. With magic. Not theory.”
“What is this threat?” asked Zacharias in a rude voice.
“You Know Who's back of course!” said Ron who, like Hermione was quickly losing respect for Zacharias.
“Yeah, and where's the proof of this? I don't see any piece of evidence that would make me think he has regained power.” Zacharias shot back.
“Harry's your proof. His word is all you need.” said Padma Patail on the other side of the pub.
“Yeah, Potter can tell us more about Cedric Diggory's death.” Micheal Corner said in a fascinated voice. Cho Chang's eyes quickly filled with tear at the mention of her old boyfriend's death. I knew this was a very touchy subject for Cho.
“If you just want to hear about Cedric's death than you might as well leave because that's not why we brought you all here.” said Harry. The room had gotten quiet. The only sound was of the little old lady sitting in the corner sipping her tea.
“Is it true you can produce a patronus charm?” piped up Luna in her dreamy voice. All head turned towards her.
“Yes,” Hermione answered for Harry, “I've seen it.”
“Blimey Harry!” said Dean Thomas. “I didn't know you could do that!”
“And he killed the basilisk with the sword in Dumbledore's office.” Neville added in.
“Not to mention he also saved my life in second year.” said Ginny. Her cheeks did grow slightly red as she recalled the event.
“And he fought off about a hundred dementors in third year.” Ron added as most of the students looked up at Harry with awe.
“And last year he really did fight off You Know Who himself.” Hermione finished.
“Listen,” said Harry who was not enjoying how worked up everybody was getting. “All those times I almost always had help and I would barely make it out alive.”
“He's just being modest.” Hermione butt in.
“No, Hermione I'm not,” He turned to Hermione when he said this. “You don't what it's like to be out there being seconds away from death or watching a friend die right in front of your eyes. It's not like school. In school if you mess up you can just try again tomorrow but out there, you don't have a second chance. I may sound all great but it's really not.”
“We understand Harry,” I finally spoke up, “ That's why we need you. You've been through it all and you need to teach us. Not just to pass our O.W.L.s or to be the best in our class, but to defend ourselves for what is really out there. If the Ministry doesn't want us to learn Defense Against the Dark Arts the proper way than let's rebel.” I finished.
“So he really is out there?” asked a young Gryffindor boy, “Right now?”
“Yes.” answered Hermione. “And if we are going to defend ourselves from,” Hermione took a deep breath, “from Voldemort, then we need a proper teacher.” Many of the students shuddered at the sound of Voldemort's name.
“We need to form an army.” I said. “A secret army. If Umbridge finds out, well, than we're all dead.”
“Sounds like a good challenge.” said Fred Weasley. At that Hermione pulled out a large piece of parchment. She tapped it with her wand and muttered a few words.
“Well our group needs a name?” asked Lavender Brown.
“Well what do we call ourselves?” Hannah Abbott asked.
“Does anybody have any good ideas for names?” asked Hermione, as she looked around the pub. The room fell silent as people began to think.
“How about 'The Anti-Ministry League'?” suggested Dean Thomas.
“Nah, that doesn't really have a nice ring.” replied Fred. Some students muttered in agreement.
“The Umbridge Haters?” piped Alicia Spinnet.
“Too obvious.” said Harry quickly.
“How about 'Dumbledore's Army?” asked Ginny. Many of the students nodded there heads in approval. All eyes were on Ginny.
“That's absolutely perfect!” Harry said in response, beaming at Ginny. Ginny's cheeks turned a little shade scarlet, and I knew it wasn't from the cold.
By the time we had finished our meeting it was time to head back to Hogwarts. On the parchment that Hermione charmed, we all signed out names underneath the words 'Dumbledore's Army' which was printed at the top. There was a total of twenty-seven of us in Dumbledore's Army. “Hermione?” I asked on our way back to Hogwarts.
“Yes?” she said peaking her head just above a copy of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
“What if one of the members tells Umbridge about Dumbledore's Army? I mean they could easily just walk up to Umbridge and tell her.” Hermione laughed.
“Trust me,” she said “they're not going to want to tell Umbridge.”
“Why is that?” I asked.
“Well I put a special charm on the paper so if anybody tells someone untrustworthy they'll get a lovely case of acne across they're forehead that spells out 'Sneak!'” I laughed.
“I love magic.”