Chapter 13 // Ravenclaw Tower
‘Come on, this way!’ Jason said, ‘Ravenclaw tower is at the top of that staircase. Get a move on!’
When we finally get to the end of the staircase, I was out of breath. It wasn’t like I wasn’t in shape, but I just didn’t like sports and to me, climbing a tall, winding staircase to the fifth floor, definitely sounded like sports. When I finally caught my breath, I looked up. The door looked like a regular door, which surprised me. The only weird thing about it was that it didn’t have a handle or a keyhole, but an enchanted bronze knocker in the shape of an eagle.
‘Welcome, fellow Ravenclaws! My name is Jason, and this is Nancy Quinnelly. We are your prefects. This is the entrance to our common room,’ Jason spoke, ‘when you rap on the door, this knocker will ask you a question, and if you can answer correctly, you are allowed in.’
I frowned and the boy next to me let out a small squawk. From what I heard, the Slytherin common room opened with a password, which seemed easier. But it seemed like Ravenclaw never went with the easy way.
‘I know some of you will be scared by having to answer the eagle’s questions,’ Quinnelly, the female prefect, said, ‘Don’t worry about it. You’ll learn quickly.’
‘It’s not unusual to find twenty people standing outside the common room door, all trying to work out the answer to the day’s question together,’ Jason grinned like a little boy, ‘It’s actually a wonderful way to meet fellow Ravenclaws from other years and to learn from them. I do advise you to triple-check your bag for everything you need before leaving the Ravenclaw Tower!’
‘So, who wants to give it a try?’ I swallowed and took a step back, trying to look everywhere but the prefects, ‘Macmillan? Why don’t you try?’
I just knew they were going to pick me. They were trying to proof to everyone that I wasn’t supposed to be in Ravenclaw. I rolled my shoulders, stepped up to the door and rapped the knocker once. The eagle immediately opened its beak, but instead of the call of the bird, we heard a soft, melodious voice ask: ‘Under pressure is the only way I work and by myself is the only way I’m hurt. What am I?’
I stared at the eagle. The students behind me were dead quiet, curious about my answer. I looked at the female prefect, who grinned at me rather strangely. ‘Need help?’
I ran my hand through my hair and was about to accept her offer and my defeat, when my eyes fell on Jason. He looked at my intently, as if he expected me to succeed. His gaze stopped me, and I pondered my brain. And then it came to me.
‘A diamond,’ I answered confidently, ‘it’s a diamond.’
‘Good reasoning,’ said the voice, and the door opened. I stared at it in surprise, thinking I was dreaming, but when an applause arose from the students behind me, I knew that I wasn’t the only one to see the open door. Jason smiled and patted me on the back, but Quinnelly pulled a sour mouth.
‘After you, Macmillan!’ I stepped through the door, nervous and excited at the same time.
The Ravenclaw common room was a wide, circular room with arched windows hung with blue and bronze silks and a midnight blue carpet covered in stars. The ceiling was painted with stars too, but they seemed to move around as I stared at them. The room was furnished with tables, chairs and bookcases and by the door leading up to what I assumed were the dormitories, stood a tall statue made of white marble.
‘That’s Rowena Ravenclaw,’ Jason pointed at the statue, ‘she’s the founder of our house. Her daughter is our house ghost.’
Nancy directed the girls through one door to our dormitory and Jason took the boys through another. At the top of a spiral staircase – they were obviously in one of the towers – we found our beds at last: five four-posters hung with deep blue curtains. Our trunks had already been brought up. Too tired to talk much, we pulled on our pyjamas and fell into bed. I wanted to ask Luna if she thought Jason was hot too, but I fell asleep almost at once. When I woke the next day, I didn’t remember sleeping that well ever before.
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