Diary of an Irascible Willow
netrat (aged 23 and no long white beard in sight)
I don’t own the setting or any of the familiar characters, they are J. K.
a good idea to respect ancient trees, especially if they have a temper like the
Whomping Willow.” A diary of the last week in May 1975, featuring several
familiar characters and the Whomping Willow’s elderly aunt who lives at the
edge of the Forest.
DIARY OF AN IRASCIBLE WILLOW
(Third Tree to the Right, Near the Edge of the Forbidden Forest)
23 to 28 May, 1975
Can you believe what it’s like on the grounds on a warm spring
night? Enough to make you shout “Off with you lot, and shouldn’t you be studying
for your OWLs anyway?” – if you could shout, that is. Although judging
by what I’ve seen and heard, young Mr Rosier certainly doesn’t need any more
work on his Charms. An O if ever I saw one, and as for the young lady – an O in
Swooning and Giggling, I’d say, and at least an E in Slandering Your Classmates
… poor Carrot-Head Evans, whoever that is.
Something funny happened last night: Went stretching my roots for a bit in
the Forest, with half a mind to have a peep at the Mooncalves dancing – strange
sight, that; imagine cows doing the waltz – anyway, was nearly halfway there
when I heard voices coming out of thin air. Ghosts? We don’t usually get them
out here. Too far off; they’re supposed to haunt the castle stones, you know,
and anyway, they’re not invisible. Funny ghosts that would have been, too:
”Padfoot, are you sure it’s there?”
”Course I am, just you trust me. There’s supposed to be a whole colony
“A colony? You mentioned only one giant spider! What if we
get eaten?” This ghost was obviously panicking.
“Then you won’t have to sit your OWLs.” Laughter.
”Wormtail, relax. Can’t be much more dangerous than a real live
werewolf, now, can they?”
Another voice, calm if a bit strained: “Shut up, will you? There’s
things out here to hear us.”
”Yes, prefect Moony, sir. Shutting right up.”
And then there was silence.
Outrageous, the way students are
behaving nowadays! Why, when I was just a shoot, at least they used to know
what respect meant! This evening, a boy ripped off several of my youngest
leaves and snapped three twigs, all without the slightest apology, thank
you very much. Some of us have feelings, you know. Think I recognised him, too
– that dark-haired, hook-nosed boy, a human snake if ever I saw one. Keeps
sneaking around looking for stuff to put in his cauldron, even dragged out a
pair of live Bowtruckles some time ago. At least he had the good sense to take
another path out of the Forest, or else his twigs would have got
snapped. Shame that I’m not allowed on the grounds – still, I might have a word
with my niece who lives there … a fiery young lady she is.
Gryffindor House has the very great pleasure of announcing the winning
of the Quidditch Cup to every tree unfortunate enough to stand within shouting
range. You should have seen the shoots hiding inside the Forest, all scared by
the noise and sparks, poor darlings. If Mr Filch ever comes here, I’ll make him
a list of new items to forbid: 1) students, 2) fireworks, 3) Jeff, Ian, and
Sally Weasley, 4) Gryffindor House, 5) fake lions that really roar, 6) the
colours red and gold … and that’s just off the top off my crown. I’m sure the
spruce that had to calm the young ones could suggest a few more.
Yes, Mr Funny Ghost, winning the Cup is all very well, but why do you
think the edge of the Forest would be the right place for a romantic walk with
your date? And even if you are handsome to look at – clean and tanned bark,
silky black leaves – you need not carry your nose that high. What’s the
penknife for? Would you mind –
Most scandalous thing I’ve ever heard of – SLASH – no
respect or – SWIPE – consideration, how would it feel if I cut my
initials into you – SLASH – I will teach you to tell a Willow
from a scrap of parchment, just you wait –
Oh. He’s gone, limping towards the castle, dragging the girl with him.
Better limp to the hospital wing, Mr S. B. – whatever that stands for;
hopefully something really stupid or embarassing, like Soy Beans or Soggy
Bottom … If you’d taken your date to Hogsmeade like any sane boy, you’d
probably be kissing over butterbeers by now. Now look at what you’ve done,
there’s resin coming out of the cuts –
Wonderful news today … Mr S. B. has a black eye (to fit his name), a
swollen ankle, and lost his House ten points for cutting his initials
into me. My bark is healing nicely, too, thanks to Professor Sprout’s
marvellous tincture. She was most apologetic when she came down to see me
today. Good to see some people minding their manners … Of course I knew
her mother, old Wilhelmina Sprout, she used to take the little girl down here
to play among my very roots. As the twig is bent … but there’s the young
gamekeeper coming with a big sack slung over his shoulders, what’s he up
to? Wonder if the Centaurs have forgotten about that time he let the
Hippogriffs onto their clearing …
Then came the rustling of leaves and, quite possibly, arrows. A big,
heavy body, moving very quickly, snapping the twigs of unfortunate trees along
the way –
“Now, jus’ yer listen, will yeh?”
… Apparently not.