Chapter 2- The Great Feast
Characters: Taela Ridgeway, Headmaster Dippit, Archie MacGregor, Petra, and Christian.
Summary: Taela has a surprise conversation, hears a dreaded announcement, and thinks a lot.
Taela clapped along with all the other members at her table as Petra was sorted into Gryffindor. Glancing down the table, she noticed Christian had turned decidedly pale and his smile looked more like a pained grimace. I understand him wanting her to join his house, but why ever does he seem soo thoroughly...upset?
Shrugging, Taela directed her attention to the food which had appeared in droves on the table. Taking a bit of her favorites she began picking at her food, lost in thought. She never found herself to be as hungry as she thought she was whenever there was food on her plate. Her mind was usually racing much too fast with thoughts for her to worry about the necessity of food. Picking at her Kidney pie, she continued glancing around. Christian, she saw, was himself stealing glances at the Gryffindor table. Petra looked slightly overwhelmed by the boisterous Gryffindors that surrounded her. She looks more like a Hufflepuff to me...or a very sneaky Slytherin
"Miss Taela May, do you think you could scoot that cake a bit in my direction please?" a male voice said, cutting through her thoughts. Looking up, she came face to face with a grinning Archibald MacGregor. She often partnered with him in Transfiguration and had always found him to be rather dashing.
Blushing, she glanced down, sliding the cake his way and muttering, "Sure thing," her stomach tied in nots. Oh my plan isn't working at all! I can't even have polite conversation with one of the only people that actually takes the time to strike up a conversation with me!
Suddenly, she realized he was still talking, asking about her summer. Without her volition, she could feel herself sinking lower in her seat. She wanted to answer, but it was as if her lips were sealed with spellotape and her mind was full of mush.
"A transfer student, what do you make of that, eh? Wonder if her English is up too snuff," he continued. This was something she could handle. It was less personal. She opened her mouth to reply when the hall got overly quite. Looking up, Taela realized that the headmaster was finally going to make the last announcement.
He started his usual stream of consciousness, and she started to drift back into thought, until she heard, "I am pleased to tell you that we will be having a Formal Masquerade Ball this year to be held on All Hallow's Eve."
Taela's stomach dropped. A ball? That can't be. Not a ball. Oh Merlin, I'll be the only girl that will not be going. How is that going to look?
Looking around, she took in the excited female faces. Of course, they all have reasons to be so excited. They're all very lovely and there will be men flocking to them in droves. I'm going to be the only girl without a date.
Glancing over at Archie, she knew her face matched his look of horror. Shaking her head, she looked back at Dippit as he let out a cough. "Ah, yes, well. It's very exciting, no?" NO! It is very not exciting.
I'm rather afraid it is only open too Third Years and above." There was much grumbling and complaining from the second and first years, but it was interrupted as the headmaster continued, "I'm sorry, but there will be no exceptions. It is to be a costumed affair and house points will be awarded for the most imaginative and to the most complimentary costumes for a pair. Now, off to bed!"
As Taela rose and allowed herself to get pushed into the crowd of Ravencalws, she though, First a mysterious exchange student. Now a costume ball. As if people don't hide behind their facades enough...this is going to be interesting.