I dragged my impossibly heavy trunk down the stairs, wincing each time it landed heavily on the steps. Pa had told me that I needed to wait for him to come up and take my trunk, but we were already late and I definitely didn’t want to start off the school year on the wrong foot. Tightening my grasp on the leather handle, I yanked the trunk down the last couple of steps. Panting, I leant against the wall for a few seconds of rest, my hand raw from rubbing against the rough leather strap.
“Minerva, what did I tell you?” Pa scolded as he saw me bent over next to my trunk, “You were supposed to wait for me. Are you all right?”
“Never been better,” I gasped, “Let me help you take it out to the car.”
“No, I think you’d better go and sit,” he said, “Archie! Come here! I need you to help me drag this beast of a trunk out.”
“Pa, I can do it,” I told him, taking hold of the leather handle again, “See, I’m fine.”
He said nothing. Perhaps he felt the glint in my eyes that dared him to tell me that I was too weak to carry the trunk, that this was no job fit for a girl. I lifted my end of the trunk as Pa lifted his, and I could acutely feel the pain in my arms. My muscles were screaming to be released from this heavy load. I stubbornly carried on walking with the handle strained between my red raw hands.
“Ow!” I yelled as Pa dropped his end of the trunk and made my end came crashing down on my Mary-Janes.
“Minnie, go sit in the car,” he told me, “Thanks for offering to help but Archie can take over now.”
I bit my lips and walked out the door, not wanting to argue on a case that I would surely lose. I could hear Archie complaining to Pa about why he had to carry my trunk, and Pa’s voice scolding him. I slipped into the back seat of the car, seating myself next to Peter. Ma turned around to look at me from the front seat, and wordlessly handed me a handkerchief. I took it gratefully and mopped the sweat from my face. A loud crashing announced the arrival of the trunk on top of our car, and seconds later Pa slipped into the driver’s seat. Archie jumped into the back seat with me and Peter, sandwiching me between them.
“Quicker Pa! We’re going to be late!” said Archie, his voice loud with panic. The train was leaving in forty minutes and it would take us about half an hour to get to King’s Cross.
“Calm down Archie,” Ma said, “We’ll get there in time.”
And so went the rest of the car trip, with Archie jumping up every five seconds to tell Pa to hurry up. Peter was quiet beside me, his face turned towards the window. I knew that he was trying hard to conceal his tears of jealousy from me and Archie, so I silently slipped my arm around his shoulders and gave him a hug. Poor child, I would take him along to Hogwarts if I could...
“Children, get out quickly!” Ma called, turning us all onto insanely-fast-movement mode.
Us three children scrambled out of the car as Pa ran to secure two trolleys and Ma started to unload our trunks. Hastily we pilled our belongings onto the rusty silver trolleys and headed towards Platform 9 ¾. Pa was leading us, his hands guiding my trolley through the crowd in the most dangerous manner. Ma followed suit with Archie’s trolley, and we ran along after them. There was a massive crowd in front of the platform as we arrived, with rows and rows of men in soldier uniforms. Pa pushed me towards my trolley and told me to run. I backed the trolley out a little, closed my eyes and ran straight towards the wall between platforms 9 and 10. The smell of steam from the Hogwarts Express greeted my nose, and I opened my eyes to see a platform filled with magical folks. Archie appeared from behind me, with Ma and Pa and Peter right on his heels.
“Minnie, Archie, get on the train!” Ma ordered, “We’ll pass you your belongings when you’re already on.”
We both scrambled up the platform and onto the train, our arms reaching out wide as we took in bags after bags. The blaring whistle of the train sounded the minute warning before departure, and I leant out to hug Ma goodbye as Archie shook Pa’s hand. Peter was nowhere to be seen.
“Oh, he must’ve ran off somewhere,” Ma said, “We’ll find him later and tell him your goodbyes.”
The doors to the carriages began to close, and we bent down to pick up our baggage to move to a compartment. The train began its slow crawl out of the station, and I freed one hand to wave goodbye to my parents. When they were no longer visible, I took my bags and headed up to the fourth compartment, the one where Gus told me she would be in. We were on our way.