Platform 9¾

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Compartment 4  Closed 

Emily awoke bright and early on the morning of September first, dressed quietly in her favorite outfit and combed her hair before checking herself in the mirror in her room. She was excited because today was the day her father would escort her to King’s Cross Station. Once there, they would cross the magical barrier onto Platform Nine And Three-Quarters to board the school train that would take her to Hogwarts.

She walked over to her school trunk which lay open at the foot of her bed. She made certain that she packed her new school robes, schoolbooks, quills, parchment, ink bottles, potions kit and the other things she would need during the school year. She took one last look around her bedroom in case she had forgotten anything. Satisfied that everything was there in her trunk, she closed the lid and locked her trunk before turning to her desk.

Emily did not want to have to rummage through her trunk while on the train so she decided to pack a few items in her purse which was on her desk. She packed her small money bag, her train ticket, her favorite scented lip balm and small hairbrush into her purse. She also slipped her wand into the hidden pocket of her jeans before looking at the small clock on her night stand. It was time to head for King’s Cross Station.

The trip to the train station on Charing Cross Road was quite uneventful. After loading her school trunk onto an empty trolley, Emily and her father were soon leaning casually against the barrier to Platform Nine And Three-Quarters. Once on the platform, they noticed it was packed with students and parents alike. School trunks were being loaded onto the train as students and parents were saying their last minute good-byes. After getting her school trunk loaded onto the train, Emily turned to her father and said their last goodbyes before Emily boarded the train with the other students. Once she had boarded the train, she set off to find a compartment. After finding the first few compartments full of students, she came upon an empty one in the middle of the train. She entered the compartment, leaving the door open for anyone else looking for a place to sit.

Emily sat down in the seat closest to the window so she could look out at those who were still on the platform. She knew her father couldn’t wait around the platform for the train to leave the station before heading back home. The train whistle blew loudly and soon the platform began to empty as students boarded the train and parents began to head off on their own. Seeing the now empty platform, Emily kept looking out the window while feeling the slight jerk as the Hogwarts Express started moving along the tracks. Sitting back in her seat, Emily watched the scenery out the window as the train traveled along on its journey to Hogwarts. She hoped someone would join her in the compartment so she wouldn't have to spend the trip alone.

Compartment 4  Closed 

It was a rude awakening for Ignatius on September first, in all honesty, when he had awoken it was so dark that he still thought it was night. Though according to Tilly, his house elf, his mother had ordered her to wake him earlier because "There's no time to waste" or something within that context. After the time he spent for preparation for his first year at school, he had forgotten the exact words.  The travel had been awfully quick, filled with nagging and constant reminders from his parents and before he knew it, he was at King's Cross Station and was face to face with the Platform Nine and Three-Quarters. With all of the reminders uttered from his darkly dressed parents he didn't need a demonstration to get across. Once on the other side of the barrier, he had swiftly bid a farewell to his parents, picked up his luggage and had entered the Hogwarts Express.

The inside of the train was everything he had expected. Crowded, loud, and students young and old bidding last minute farewells to their family. It was both welcoming and uncomfortable for him, and for a while, he didn't know what to do once he had entered. As if he was entranced by students laughing and some reuniting with old friends. But soon enough, by the sound of the train's whistle, he had realized he was just standing there like a complete and total idiot. He had walked looking at the ground to hide his embarrassed face, glancing at some compartments to see if there was an open one for him to sit. A majority seemed to be filled, but not before long he had found a compartment which seemed to only contain a girl, who seemed to be his age sitting there.  Ignatius gave a small knock against the compartment door before opening it slightly.

"May... May I sit with you?" The young eleven year old's accent was posh and the repetition of his beginning word made him wince. That was not how a pure-blood would get the attention of someone. He should be glad his mother wasn't there to sharply correct him. 

Compartment 4  Closed 

The Hogwarts Express was filled with excitement as returning students met up with their friends and first year students were getting to know one another. The steady clacking of the train’s wheels as they meandered along the tracks set a smooth and steady tempo which Emily found to be comfortably soothing. It sort of reminded her of a lullaby. The slight swaying of the train cars was quite relaxing as well.

Emily thought back to her father and wondered what he was doing at that very moment. Her dad was probably in his Potions lab, busy brewing potions to sell. Emily would definitely miss not being there to help her father, but she was sure that she would have a great time at Hogwarts. She had promised her father that she would write home often and keep them informed about how her first year was going. Emily and her father never kept secrets from one another. They told each other everything.

While Emily sat alone in her compartment, watching the scenery outside her window and thinking about what her first year at Hogwarts would be like, she heard a voice outside her compartment. She pulled her gaze from the window and looked towards the door where a young boy was standing. Asking if the seat was taken, Emily gestured to it with open arms and a smile. “Not at all. Please sit down with me. I was starting to think I was going to be making this trip alone,” Emily said with a giggle. “My name is Emily. This is my first time to Hogwarts,” she added.

Her father had told her everything he could about Hogwarts, describing everything in great detail. He didn’t want his young daughter to become scared or nervous so he tried very hard to put her mind at ease. He spoke highly of the Hogwarts staff, having stayed in contact with some of the professors after he graduated from the school. Emily always wanted to go to school in a castle. And now that she was getting that chance, she was super-excited.

“My father and I live in the wizarding world and I don’t know all that much about the muggle world. I think both worlds are simply fascinating in their own way. How about you? Where are you from?” she asked him.

Compartment 4  Closed 

Ignatius felt very relaxed with the girl's smile and had indeed sat down with her, in front of her that is. "Thank you. I had feared the same the moment I stepped onto the express."  He had admitted. "I'm Ignatius, a pleasure to meet you Emily. I too am a first year." 

Though Ignatius had heard so many boastful tales of his parent's time at Hogwarts that he felt as if he knew the school better than he knew himself. But they had talked more about Slytherin more than anything, which made him nervous out of his mind and made him ponder what they were to do to him if he was to get sorted into another house. Actually, he'd rather not know. That'll only make him more nervous.

Ignatius listened to Emily, she seemed too nice to not be listened to. "I live in the wizarding part of London with my parents." He had informed  her with a smile, awkward smile. He was never one to smile as much growing up, only when he's in the comforts of his room and is talking with Tilly or enjoying a nice book. The smile faded as fast as it came. "I've never really met a muggle, at least I haven't gotten to know one, I've been kept indoors a lot as a child." He was even hired a tutor rather than going to primary school with other children. "Though my parents don't seem to be very fond of them. But I'm not exactly sure why." That was a lie. He had known exactly why, but it was best not tell if he didn't want a possible loss of a possible friend. 

Compartment 4  Closed 

Emily smiled as the boy sat down in the seat opposite hers.  “Hello, Ignatius.  Nice to meet you,” she said.  He seemed like a nice boy with an air of politeness about him.  Emily felt a bit better now that she had someone to talk to during the trip to Hogwarts.  Perhaps they could become friends, but Emily didn’t want to rush into it.

She had heard of the times her father had while he was a student at Hogwarts.  He told her about the Sorting Ceremony and how he was sorted into Slytherin House.  She hoped she would be sorted there as well.  Though she wouldn’t mind being sorted into a different house.  Her father told her to accept whichever house she was sorted into and he would be happy just the same.  She smiled again.

“My dad has met muggles before and told me a bit about them.  I might have met one or two, but never took the time to actually get to know them,” Emily said.  She had never gone to a muggle school as her father kept her at home and taught her some useful stuff himself.  He didn’t want to alienate her from the muggle world or anything, but since he was a single father, he thought it would be better to keep her close by.

Compartment 4  Closed 

He listened intently to Emily's words with pure interest. He had never met someone who talked of muggles without a chain of insults connected. Ignatius hummed in understanding. "My family is very... strict with whom I should meet with." He explained rather quickly. "This is actually the first time I've been out of their sights." Ignatius had flushed an embarrassing shade of red once realizing what he had said.

He paused quietly, thinking of what to say that wouldn't embarrass him. "What house do you think you'd be sorted in?" Ignatius had asked with curiosity and interest gleaming in his eyes. It may have seemed to be the most overrated question any first year can hear when they ride the express for the first time, but Ignatius had learned that questions like that could be good conversation starters. "I mean, The Sorting hat may decide your fate, but if you were to decide for your own." Ignatius clarifies, with his hand rubbing the other, which was one of his guilty habits. He usually did it a lot when nervous or anxious, but in this case, it was just a reflex. Or maybe it was because he was possibly starting to make a friend. His first friend. Which, can honestly get basically anyone anxious.

Compartment 4  Closed 

Emily listened to quietly as Ignatius spoke.  “I’m sure your parents just want you to be safe and want what is best for you.  That‘s kind of how my dad is.  We‘re all each other has as far as a family goes.  I never knew my mother.  She died when I was three,” she said, a bit sadly.

Ignatius told her a bit about the Sorting Ceremony and asked which house she thought she would be in.  “Well, my dad was in Slytherin so I’m kind of hoping I will be in Slytherin as well.  Though, I think I might have qualities from all of the houses.  The Sorting Hat will know the best place for us, right?” she said.  She knew her dad wouldn’t be angry if she wasn’t in Slytherin, but she really wanted to be in the house as he was.

Emily noticed Ignatius rubbing his hands together and seemed a bit nervous.  She really would like to be his friend.  Perhaps by the end of the train ride, they would be.  For know, they could just talk and get to know each other better.  “Do you know when the food trolley comes by?  I’m getting a bit hungry,” she asked, hoping to buy some chocolate frogs.

Compartment 4  Closed 

"I'm sorry for your loss." His tone was softer than usual. Ignatius didn't know what it was like to lose a family member. His grandfather had died of dragon pox before he was born (and his family never had told stories of him to really make him miss him) and his grandmother was still alive and kicking. "She must be a great woman. And wherever she is, she's definitely watching over you." Whenever the subject of a passed on person came into topic, Ignatius would never use past tense. He fancied the idea of the afterlife, and that no one was truly dead. For nothing can really kill the soul except for corruption. And from how much he knows of Emily, no corrupt woman could have possibly have given life to her. 

He had nodded to Emily's response. "I suppose you're right." The Sorting hat does know what is best for each student, and with that, most students wouldn't be so nervous about it. But Ignatius was not like most people. "I am as well hoping to be Slytherin, like my parents, and their parents, and their parent's parents..." Ignatius began to trail off. He could go on forever if Emily hadn't spoken up to ask a question.

Ignatius had glanced out their compartment and caught a glimpse at the old, polite looking woman, nearing their compartment with a trolley full of assorted candies and sweets. He looked back at Emily with a smile as he took out his dragon scaled coin purse which had contained the money his parents had given him for this specific occasion.  "The Trolley witch near approaching, it won't take much long." Ignatius had always had a knack for sweets, though cauldron cakes were always his favorite out of all. If he had a sickle for every time his mother would have to practically drag him by the hair to leave Honeydukes, he'd be able to build a life sized model of Hogwarts made entirely out of sickles.

Compartment 4  Closed 

“Thanks,” Emily said after Ignatius expressed sorrow for the loss of her mother.  “I know she is in a better place and is definitely watching out for me.  And for my dad.  I guess one could say that we have our own guardian angel,” she added.  She smiled when he agreed about the Sorting Hat knowing the best place for new students.  “I’m sure you will get Slytherin.  I’m sure both of us will get into Slytherin.  I heard that the Sorting Hat often keeps families together in the same house so we shouldn’t have much trouble.  And if you are sorted into a different house, you could always try getting a house transfer,” she also said.

Emily watched Ignatius glance out their compartment to spot the food trolley which was being pushed by a kind looking lady.  He turned back and said that the trolley was nearing their compartment.  “Great, I really want to get some chocolate frogs.  They are my absolute favorite and I like to collect the cards they come with.  I have almost a complete set with only a few missing,” Emily said, pulling her small money bag from her purse.  “Do you have any favorite sweets?“ she asked while waiting for the trolley to appear at their compartment door.