Drabble Challenge: Goyle, quaffle, King's Cross

September First

by Niels van Eekelen

It was September First. Goyle like that date—easy to remember. Goyle sometimes had trouble with birthdays, or holidays.

But September First he could remember. Made him feel confident, confident enough that he saw no problem getting to the Hogwarts Express on his own, while his Father was busy doing other things. (Things that Goyle was under strict orders not to discuss with anyone, not even with Malfoy and Crabbe, not even in the safety of the Slytherin common room, because walls could have ears, and those were often very hard to spot and avoid.)

Anyway, Goyle could handle himself. He was sixteen, after all, and taller and stronger than most adult men. Not a baby anymore, as he'd told his Mother when she was trying to fuss over him before he left home. She had enchanted his school robes to look like muggle clothes, much to Goyle's chagrin. But with his father away, Goyle wouldn't be able to take the shortcut onto the platform that the more respectable wizarding families had insisted be installed. He had to go through the muggle train station.

That was where he found himself now, and it was worse than Goyle had ever imagined. It was so… so busy and crowded. That filth brushed up against him at every turn. As soon as he saw Pansy, he'd ask her to do a Scourgify on him to disinfect him. (He'd do it himself, but he'd outgrown his old robes and had needed all-new ones again for that year, and his Mother would be angry if he ruined a set on his first day.)

Idly bouncing his quaffle on one hand, Goyle looked around. Surely there was a sign pointing to the Hogwarts Express around here somewhere? Ah, wait, he saw it, there was the platform—or at least, the wall with the magical portal that kept the platform clean of muggles.

Slap.

What in the name of Merlin's crooked tombstone? Goyle raised his hand to smack his quaffle into the air again, but found it gone. For a moment, he was confused, but then he looked around at a high-pitched giggle and saw what had happened. A muggle child, no older than a Hogwarts firstie from the looks of him, had stolen the ball. Goyle growled, but it only got worse—the filth threw the quaffle on the ground and kicked it ahead of him. The disrespect! Oh, if only he hadn't been banned from bringing his personal bludger set with him to Hogwarts, that would have taught the kid right.

Instead, Goyle reached for the wand hidden in his cloak—no, coat—pocket, only to remember that his mother had charmed that pocket shut to remind him not to use it in front of muggles.

With a loud oath, Goyle ran after the kid, knocking his way through the filthy crowd. More oaths followed him, but muggle swearing just sounded funny to Goyle's ears. He was still dragging along the trolley with his school trunk, and barely managed to keep the kid in sight. Goyle didn't trust these people as far as he could throw them (which, he reckoned, was actually still pretty far) and didn't want to let his possessions out of his sight. Frustration soon got the better of him, though—and they were moving in circles anyway.

He let go of the trolley and ran forward as fast as his formidable legs could carry him, and with a whoop of victory, caught the thief by the neck of his sweater.

The little monster began to shriek so loudly that even the Dark Lord would have been taken aback.

Still, Goyle just grunted and held him in mid air while he retrieved his poor, abused quaffle. "Hey you!" an angry voice strained to be heard over the kid's wailing. "That's my son! How dare you touch—"

The quaffle now in his hand, Goyle rose up to his full height and glared at the man. That shut him up, thank Merlin. He wanted his son? Well, he could have him and they deserved each other. He tossed the kid at the man and turned away to fetch his trolley without another glance. Running late, now. Malfoy would already be on the platform, and he did not appreciate being kept waiting.

Blasted idiot muggles. This was exactly why they needed to get rid of them, and particularly mudbloods, who thought to bring that sort of behaviour into the wizarding world. Be the downfall of their civilisation, they would.