The Sugar Quill
Author: Fawkes101  Story: Better than Binns  Chapter: Chapter 1: The Tough Start
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The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

Disclaimer: J

Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling created Harry Potter and the dialogue. I just live and breathe it.

A/N: Thanks to my beta-reader Night Zephyr, J.K. Rose for writing a story with Ron researching, indirectly giving me inspiration for this fic and everyone who expressed interest in this plot idea.

 

"Ron! Have you finished all your homework yet?" Hermione looked up from her work and saw Ron, bent over a Quidditch book, at the kitchen table in the Burrow.

"Yes, I have." Ron replied, not looking up.

" Be serious, Ron!" Hermione reproached.

"I did! Here, you want to check?" Ron challenged indignantly, his homework in his outstretched hand. Hermione took his homework and began to look it over. "Well?" Ron said, "Iím waiting." Hermioneís mouth dropped as she read his parchment.

"Ron! You actually did finish itÖ I am amazed! I didnít know you had it in you to actually finish your homework without me." Hermioneís eyebrows raised, as she finished up the reading.

"See, I told you I finished," Ron smirked triumphantly. "Who was right?" Ron tried strongly to resist the urge to dance around in circles.

"You were, Ron. You were right. Stop gloating!" Hermione raised her voice to the loudest level without disturbing the napping Weasleys. She thought for a few minutes and then, slowly, she turned around. "I have a challenge for you, Ronald Weasley." Her voice was now soft, too soft.

"A challenge? Oh really, and what may that be, Hermione Granger?" An amused look spread over Ronís face.

"Here." Hermione held out a thick, leather bound book.

"HmmÖ" Ron eyed the book rather suspiciously. It was a crinkled black leather book with silver writing on it. The book, entitled The Truth behind the Tales was a thick one, the pages yellowed with age. He glanced at the cover and saw four wizards and witches, pacing about, with Hogwarts in the background. "Is there a time limit?"

"Excellent idea, Ron! Thanks! Yes, there will be. You must finish this before Percyís wedding."

"But thatís in a week!" Ron spluttered.

"Exactly."

"ButÖ"

"Donít argue with me, Ronald Weasley!" Under her breath she muttered, "You wonít win."

"Fine. But, if I do take this challenge, whatís my reward?"

"Reward?" Hermione bit her lip; "I have one! I will not bug you about the O.W.L.s. until the end of November."

"Really? Ok, Iíll take the challenge then," Ron picked up the book, got up and began to head up the stairs.

"Wait!"

"What?"

"Donít think you can get away with not reading it. Now, enjoy!" Hermione turned back to her work. Ron glared at her, and headed up the staircase, to his room. Ron stomped up the stairs, muttering "How? How can I read this in a week?"

"TryÖ" Hermione murmured back. Ron glared at her and stalked up the stairs. Making his way up to his room, Ron glanced at the book again. It was long, about five hundred pages. He leafed through book, eyebrows raised in interest. He opened the door to his room and crashed down on the bed. He ran his hands along the engraved title of the book and opened it.

"Ronald Weasley! Come down for dinner at once!"

"Just when I was about to get started, too," Ron mumbled to himself, as he reluctantly put the book down and headed to dinner.

"Ron! I saved you a seat!" Fred gestured next to him. Ron looked down at the seat, touching it to see if anything had been planted there, then sat down.

"All right everyone, tuck in!" The clinking of spoons, forks and knives was heard and then the chewing of food.

"Percy, how are the wedding plans going?" Everyone looked up from his or her food and at Percy.

"Quite well, actually. Penny has everything planned and written down to the last detail. She is currently double-checking everything to make absolutely sure it will be ready," Percy announced.

"Thatís nice," Molly commented with a clatter of hungry people in the background.

"Ron, I hear you will be reading a book that Hermione gave you, is that true?" Charlieís eyes crinkled with amusement.

"Come on, Ronniekins! Tell us!" George put down his spoon and turned to Ron.

"Yeah, tell us!" Fred chimed in.

Ron glared at all of their eager faces, then sighed and put down his fork. "Yes, it is! Now, stop bothering me!" Ron picked up his fork, ears red.

"Hermione, you have Ron wrapped around your finger," George remarked.

"She does not!" Ron protested.

"Oh, yes, she does. Why else would you read that book?"

"Maybe because I want to, Fred! I do like to read sometimes, you know!" Ron blushed furiously.

"Oh really?" Fred looked up in amazement. Ron did not dignify that with a response. Fred chuckled and concentrated on his chicken.

"Now Fred, stop teasing your brother," Arthur reprimanded.

"Which brother? Does Ron count as a brother?" Fred muttered back.

"Fred!" Molly warned.

"All right, Iíll stop!"

"Good. Now Percy, tell me, I hear there is a slight problem. What is that all about?" Molly inquired.

"Well, as you know, I asked Bill and Charlie to assist Penny and myself with the set up and wellÖ they appear to have ordered the wrong flowers. They ordered red tulips, instead of red roses," Percy explained, glaring daggers at his two older brothers.

"Bill, Charlie, what do you have to say for yourselves?"

"Nothing, Mum," they said in unison.

Turning back to the table, Molly shook her head in disbelief and asked, "Now, whoís ready for dessert?" Molly dished out the homemade cherry ice cream.

"Mum, this is amazing!" Ginny exclaimed.

"Thank you, dear. Just made it this morning," Molly beamed with pleasure. "Everyone, tuck in." A few minutes later, groans could be heard from across the house.

"Iím going to bed. I am very tired- good night everyone!" Ron got up out of his chair and, using the railing for support, headed up the staircase. Struggling, Ron opened the door to his room and fell asleep as soon as he hit the bed.

* * * *

The sunís rays filtered through the window and shone on Ronís face. He blocked the rays with his hands as he got up from his bed. He rubbed his eyes, trying to wake up. Stumbling downstairs, Ron found Ginny at the kitchen table, reading The Daily Prophet. "Ginny?"

"Ron! What are you doing up so early?" Ginny looked startled to see him.

"I could ask you the same thing. I couldnít sleep," Ron scoured the cupboards for food.

"There is some food on the stove, if you want any, Ron," Ginny said, watching him search through the kitchen.

"Thanks for telling me now!" A frustrated Ron grabbed some porridge and plopped down at his seat.

"So Ron, are you really going to read that book?" Ginny raised her eyebrows skeptically.

"Yes, Ginny. I believe I will."

"But why? I have never seen you truly interested in a book before."

"I like to read Ginny, you should know that. Itís just that I have never found the right book. Besides, the book is about history and I enjoy learning about history, with the exception of Binnsís teaching," Ron replied as he swallowed the last of his breakfast.

"Youíre right about Binns. I wonder why he hasnít stopped teaching since he died a while ago," Ginny rolled her eyes in bewilderment.

"Ha! He must notice we all fall asleep."

"Speak for yourself, Ron."

Ron pretended to glare at her angrily, but failed. He burst out laughing. Then, a few seconds later, Ginny did as well. They laughed until they couldnít breathe anymore. Gasping for air, Ron said, "I think Iím going to go upstairs and actually try to read that book now."

"Good luck," Ginny said, grinning at him. Ron grinned back and walked up the stairs to his room. He sat down on his bed and picked up the book. He stared at it. The Four Founders stared back.

Am I really going to do this? Ron muttered to himself, throwing the book back on his desk. I mean, I do read, but this is nearly six hundred pages! And I have only a week in which to finish it. What am I going to do? Read it? Fake it? Show them that I can? Show them I read? Let Hermione down? Give Fred and George bragging rights?

The "devil" of his mind was telling him to pretend to read it, while the "angel" of his mind was persuading him to read it and keep his promise. It wouldnít be a big deal if he didnít read it, his "devil" argued, it was only a book. His "angel" argued that not only would he learn more from reading it, but also he would prove to everyone that he really did have the patience and ability. Ronís argument with himself kept going on for nearly a half an hour. Finally, Ron, Finally, Ron fell backward onto his bed in exasperation and sighed.

 

Shaking himself alert, Ron reached for the book. He opened the book and saw a letter from the author.

Dear Reader,

You are now about to enter the lives of the Four Founders of Hogwarts. This book will show you their lives before they met each other, how they grew up, and the story of the Founding itself. This book holds the secrets that have been hidden for many years. You are now being exposed to those secrets. It is your turn to see what really happened more than one thousand years ago. The lives of Rowena Ravenclaw, Godric Gryffindor, Helga Hufflepuff and Salazar Slytherin are in your hands now. The Knowledge of the Founding and the creation of Hogwarts is as well. Enjoy this chance and treasure it.

Alanna Kerr

 

Ron turned the page to see a table of contents.

Table of Contents

Section I Ė The Lives of the Founders

  1. Godric Gryffindor
  2. Helga Hufflepuff
  3. Rowena Ravenclaw
  4. Salazar Slytherin

Section II- The Meeting and Founding

  1. The Meeting of the Founders
  2. The Founding of Hogwarts

Section III- The Creation and Opening

  1. The Creation of Hogwarts
  2. The Opening of Hogwarts

Section VI- The Conflict

  1. The Spark
  2. The Fire
  3. The Extinguishing

Section V- The Death of the Founders

  1. Salazar Slytherin
  2. Rowena Ravenclaw
  3. Helga Hufflepuff
  4. Godric Gryffindor

Ronís eyes perked up in interest as he read the table of contents. The titles intrigued him. He made himself comfortable and turned the page to Section I, Chapter I, Godric Gryffindor.

//
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