Saturday, May 31, 2008

blast and double blast

Well, we lost at Quidditch...again. At least it wasn't one of the bloody Gryffindors who caught the snitch, so we won't have to hear about it again and again and again in the Great Hall from now until the end of term.

To add insult to injury, when we were coming off the pitch, I tripped over the edge of my robe (I'm not a natural player, so I had to borrow Michael's robes, and he is a wee smidge taller than I am) and fell on the grass. Bruised shin to go with the bruised ego...charming.

Friday, May 30, 2008


1. Which of Arabella Figg's cats ran out from under the car?
a. Tibbles

2. Which of the following is NOT one of Albus Dumbledore's middle names?
a. Ignatius

3. Which educational decree introduced a High Inquisitor to Hogwarts?
d. 23

4. Apart from Harry, Ron and Hermione, who was the first person to enter the Hog's Head that showed an interest in Harry's Defence Against the Dark Arts classes?
b. Neville Longbottom

5. In the first Quidditch match of the year which player attempted to score first
a. Angelina Johnson

6. What kind of bush does Harry hide behind to listen to the news?
b. A hydrangea bush

7. Why is Mundungus Fletcher disguised as a woman when he witnesses the DA (Dumbledore's Army) meeting in the Hog's Head pub?
b. He was banned from the Hog’s Head pub 20 years ago

8. When Harry and Cho go on their first date to Madam Puddifoot's in Hogsmeade, what is it decorated with for Valentine's Day?
c. Golden cherubs and pink confetti

9. How old is Sturgis Podmore and where does he live?
a. He is 38 and number 2 Laburnum Gardens Clapham

10. What did Fred and George Weasley do to Montague?
a. Forced him head-first into a Vanishing Cabinet on the first floor


Fred and George Weasley (Together)

(from Mary @ Picasa)

Hog’s Head Pub

Sirius Black

Mr. Weasley & Harry (Together)

Draco Malfoy

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

soar ravenclaw!

Wol is looking better today--much less tired. He brought me a mouse. I'm never quite sure what to say to that. "Thanks for the food, mate, but get that foul carcass away from me." He's just not a very neat hunter, I guess.

School is starting to pick up steam, and Quidditch starts later today. Michael and Euan are quite excited for it. They're trying to transfigure a writing desk into a raven to fly above the crowd at the pitch this weekend. I also saw some adverts in the Prophet for some magical kites. Apparently most wizards don't know much about them, but my parents had Muggle friends who used to collect them (well, non-magic ones) and I must say that they are some of the most interesting things that Muggles have come up with, so I can't even imagine what magic ones might be like.

Wisteria's out of the tower for a bit, so I'm thinking this is an excellent opportunity to have some real fun around here. Time to bring in the Butterbeer!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Owls in the Family

Thanks to everyone for the well wishes. The sniffling is almost done, although I find the dungeons during Potions sometimes make it come back.

The most exciting thing that's happened in the last few days has been that my Great Horned owl, Wol, has finally made it back from delivering a package to my grandmother in Majorca, where she's been vacationing for the last few weeks. He seems quite chuffed to be back at Hogwarts--I think the house elves feed him up a bit, he always seems to look a bit...puffier after he's been here for a few days. My brother Jim's owl, Weeps, always to shrink by comparison whenever I go home.

Now that I have him back I can start sending him out to get some things for my swap partner. I wish the Headmistress would tell us when the Hosgmeade visit is, as I'm told there are a few places to pick things up there, but barring that it will all be owl orders for me. One of the girls showed me the Etsy site and Knit Picks and I'm finding some pretty interesting things on there.

I've got 4 inches to do for Potions, so I'd best be off to the library.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

What have I done to deserve this?

A dreadful stomach virus is making its way through the boys' side of Ravenclaw Tower, and I'd sad to say that I was one of the first claimed as a victim. The girls seem to all be allergic to stuff, but over here it is all tummies and fevers. I sent an owl out to my mum to tell her I wasn't feeling well, and she sent me back a letter addressed to "My Poor Little Bunny" which directed me to have a look at this video:

Not funny, Mum, not funny.

The only thing I can say for being sick is that I've had more time to focus on my knitting. Casting on is going to be the next step--I can't keep running downstairs to the Common Room to find one of the girls to do it for me.

I saw the girl who is making me a kit, Cassandra, in the hall the other day. She's in my Transfiguration and Arithmancy classes, but sits on the other side of the room. I don't think she thinks I'm very smart--I flubbed an easy question in Transfiguration and she and her friends all laughed. I bet she thinks she's so cool because she caught the snitch last year and beat Ravenclaw at Quidditch.

We'll just have to show her! Right, 'claws?

Monday, May 19, 2008


This is my favourite kind of homework--it's the Ravenclaw in me.

Can you keep a secret? The headquarters for the Order of the Phoenix is at No. 12 Grimmauld Place.

Friday, May 16, 2008

A Brief History of...Me

Wisteria wants us to write up a brief biography, so here goes:

I'm twelve years old, born April 15th, and originally from Dunfermline, in Scotland. My parents are both magic, as is my younger brother Jim. My dad's family is quite interested in wizarding geneaology--they're not blood maniacs (well, not all of them) but they think it's quite interesting to see how magical abilities move around and through different families and countries at different times.

I've taken music lessons since I was quite small--piano and flute mostly, but I asked for a bass guitar for my birthday last year (yes, rather than the broomstick my father wanted to give to me) and I haven't look back. His name is Sid, after Sid Vicious. If you don't know who that is, I'm afraid I can't help you.

My favourite subject is Transfiguration, and I suspect I'm really going to like Arithmancy this year. I also don't find History of Magic as boring as everyone else seems to--perhaps it's because I'm used to hearing all of that from my grandparents.

Oh, and I've mastered the knit stitch. Pictures are coming once I convince someone to lend me a camera.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

revenge of the knitter

I took my letter of apology up to the Hufflepuff table during breakfast this morning, but the mere sight of me upset the poor girl I scared (what is her name, anyway?) so much that she burst into tears again, and I had to leave it with her prefect. I wanted to hand deliver it rather than send it by owl in case the Headmistress was watching, but she wasn't even there.

Michael and Euan couldn't believe I'd got off that easy--they were sure I was going to be spending the rest of my days here at Hogwarts trailing behind Filch as a junior slave. When Michael saw me struggling with my knit stitches (I have to have four inches of 'garter stitch', which is just knitting back and forth, done to show the Headmistress later today), he told me I should just find a knitting charm to do it for me. His mum does quite a lot of her knitting that way. My mum...well, she's not exactly the knitting type, I guess.

We set out to find a book in the library. Apparently there are rather a lot of household charms that are quite useful. We finally found a good knitting one, but apparently they take a fair bit of practice, since we couldn't do anything other than make the yarn tie itself into more knots. Wisteria, our prefect, came over to see what we were doing (as there were plenty of sparks and possibly some swearing), and she says that creative spells like knitting spells seldom work well unless you actually know the basics of knitting first, and that furthermore, she was quite sure that the Headmistress would like me to persevere in learning to knit by hand, no matter how lumpy or knotted the result.

Michael and Euan, the idiots, couldn't stop laughing at me as I tried to untangle my wool. "Guess we'll be calling you Old Knitty for the rest of the semester," said Euan. I told him, in no uncertain terms, to sod off. "Oh, go on, we don't want to make poor Stuie upset now, do we, Michael? He might throw his yarn at us."

"I'll do more than that," I retorted hotly. "I'll fix you g--" But just then one of the third year girls came over to us--the one with the red hair that Michael's always eyeing up.

"W-would you like to come over and join us, Stuart?" she asked softly. "We might be able to give you a hand with that knitting."

Living well is the best revenge. There are now six girls (Allitrya, Cecelia, Elanor, Emma, Minerva, and Olive) who all know my name, and have given me a standing invitation to join their knitting circle. They are all participating in the kit swap organized by the Headmistress as well, so it looks as though they will be able to help me put together a proper kit. Considering that neither of those two chumps can even say hello to a girl, I'd say I came off pretty well.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Knitting? She can't be serious...

I woke up early yesterday to get myself ready for my meeting with the headmistress. I washed everything--twice--and polished my wand and my shoes. I got out my new hat. While I waited in the common room, I read two chapters of Hogwarts: A History in case she decided to quiz me on any of the other heads of school.

When I arrived at the gargoyles outside her office, she was waiting for me. "This way, please, Mr. Cauldwell," she said, and swept off down the corridor. I followed her, having to move very quickly in order to keep up. She stopped when we got to a corridor with no doors along it. "Stay here," she commanded imperiously, and began to pace. After a few minutes, a door appeared in the wall, and the Headmistress grasped its handle, and pushed it open. She gestured for me to follow her.

My heart was hammering beneath my ribs. Was this some kind of mediaeval torture chamber from the days of corporal punishment? Had Filch, the old blighter, finally won the day with his arguments about thumbscrews? Surely in invisible rooms hidden in castle walls, no one would hear me scream. I entered the room...

...and found wall upon wall of yarn, all colours of the rainbow, all slotted into cubbyholes; shelves full of books with titles like Knitting Without Tears and Stitchionary; baskets full of knitting needles in all shapes and sizes; and in the centre of the room there were two massive armchairs, separated by a small table with a steaming teapot and two teacups.
"Sit," commanded the Headmistress. As I did so, she poured us each a cup of tea from the pot. "Now, Mr. Cauldwell, I have given a great deal of thought to your misdeeds. As I understand that your intentions were not to cause harm to anyone, so must you understand that your intentions count for very little here, and you have harmed poor Miss Abbott." I stammered something in reply, setting down the teacup that my shaking hands were rattling in its saucer. "Naturally, you will be writing her a letter of apology, and if she should find herself in need of assistance in any of her school subjects during the next term, I fully expect you to put your talents into tutoring her. Do I make myself clear?" I nodded--scarcely daring to imagine that this might be the full extent of my punishment.
"Well then, Mr. Cauldwell, tell me this: Do you knit?"
Even now, several hours later, it does seem quite real. The Headmistress is enrolling me in a Magical Fibres class, where I will learn to knit (KNIT?!?) , and craft a whole kit for another student here to make socks. She feels that learning to knit will provide me with positive experiences outside of my realm of experience, and that it will keep me sufficiently busy to prevent me from causing any more mischief. Too bad I can't seem to keep a knit stitch straight for longer than thirty seconds.
What have I gotten myself into?

Friday, May 9, 2008

If no news is good news, then this must be crap

I've really done it this time.

Wisteria and Minee, our prefect and head girl respectively, were to host a welcome back party in our common room last night. In fact, they did host a welcome back party, but I didn't get to attend. Rather, I spent the evening waiting outside of Headmistress Wartbobble's office, waiting to speak to her.

Remember how I was saying earlier that the thing I remember most about first year is getting lost all the time? I had said as much to Michael and Euan as well, and somehow, between the three of us, we came up with the idea of drawing up some maps of the school grounds, and selling them to the first years. We were going to make just regular maps, and then Euan suggested we charm it so that you could tell it where you wanted to go, and it would map out your route. Sounds relatively harmless?

It was, at least until we thought it would be funny to make maps that would misdirect people on purpose...In retrospect, it may not have been the best idea to have the maps direct the holders to Professor Black's personal quarters...or to the Forbidden Forest. Between Black's anger and the tears on the face of the little Hufflepuff girl who spent three hours wandering around the Forest, completely lost, it's a wonder I wasn't expelled.

When I finally got to see the Headmistress, she really had very little to say to me. I stammered for about twenty minutes about how sorry I was. At the end, she just looked me and asked, "Am I right to imagine that these maps were not solely the product of your talents, Mr. Cauldwell?" I couldn't meet her eyes. "Very well, Mr. Cauldwell," she said. "You may return to your common room, and I hope you will tell your associates how fortunate they are that you have neglected to name them as party to this idiocy. I shall expect you to return tomorrow morning, however, and then we can discuss how you might begin to make amends for the...distress that you have caused today. You will go straight to bed, this evening, and I will see you immediately after breakfast. Do I make myself clear?"

I am so dead tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Great Hall

The thing I probably remember the most about last year is that it took me forever to find my way around the castle. It's quite funny to watch the first years struggle with it this year.

Every time I go through the Great Hall, there's always a whole gaggle of girls milling about, drinking tea and eating snacks. The last time I was down that way, they invited me to stop and chat for a bit. One of the girls makes these pumpkin pasties that are just fantastic--my own mum couldn't make better. (It turns out she's our Head Girl over here in Ravenclaw, and I'm hoping that means more treats!) One of the older girls from Slytherin had brought a keg of Butterbeer. I think it was a lot bigger than what she had imagined, because she had a hard time moving it into the Great Hall. What's a bloke to do then? Help a lady of course. Sure enough, they offered me a pint for my troubles--it certainly can pay to help those as need it. The new House unity initiative the Headmistress has put into place is helping to liven people up a bit. Everyone was quite content to hang around and chat. I don't even know when I've laughed so hard as that--I think it's fair to say I've seen and heard things I never imagined.

The girls are all quite nice, really, so I stop to chat them up a bit every time I find myself down there. Yesterday, when Michael, Euan, and I were out walking after our swimming misadventure, we passed a group of the Slytherin girls in the courtyard. They all turned to each other and giggled, in that way that girls have, and then turned back to us, calling, "Hiiiiiii, Stuart" and then giggling again. You could have knocked Michael and Euan over with a feather! All the way back to Ravenclaw Tower, all I could hear was "How do you know all the girls already?" - "Did you see that redhead smile at me?" - "Did you see the one who smiled at Stuart?" and so forth. I've a feeling that my next walk through the Hall may not be taken alone...

Monday, May 5, 2008

advetures in mischief making

More and more people are arriving everyday here. Ravenclaw Tower is nearly full up! Still no classes, so Michael and Euan and I are still making the most of the time off. In some Muggle communities, there' s a tradition called the Polar Bear Dip--on 1 May, no matter how cold it is, you take a swim in the water. I can't say that this sounded like a lot of fun, but be it far from me to back down from a, of course, in the early morning of 1 May, we snuck out of the Tower and down to the lake.

It was Michael's idea (he's Muggleborn, which is where all of these nutter's ideas come from, in case that isn't obvious) so Euan and I made him go first. He let out a terrific yell, which stopped the second he crashed through the water and into the lake. I reckon it took about twenty minutes before his voice came back, aside from a few small squeaks of pain. Not to be outdone, though, Euan and I went in next. I don't know that I've ever experienced anything quite that cold. Every single portion of my body began to scream, "Retreat! Retreat!"

We were yelling and splashing and cursing Michael, who'd gotten out by that point, when all of a sudden I felt something wrap around my ankle. I made to look over at Euan, but just as I did so, it pulled me down under the water. I hardly had any time to realize what was happening when I felt myself moving forward again through the water...and then through the air!

Landing on the bank hurt more than going into the water, I have to say; my arm still hurts. Michael reckons it was the giant squid. He claims he saw the tentacles and everything, but I'm quite certain it let go before we broke the surface of the water.

As we got back up to the Tower, the prefect, Wisteria Lovegood, was waiting for us. Apparently she saw the whole thing through the window--just our luck to have a tower that overlooks the lake. She looked pretty upset until she saw how sad and foolish we looked, and then she just started to laugh, and sent us off to the baths.
When I returned from the bath, there was a pot of tea and a plate of crumpets waiting for me, with a note that said, "In the future, stay out of the lake."