Hermione couldn't help but sigh. It was the start of her fourth year at Hogwarts and she was struggling with growing criticism from Slytherins and even fellow Gryffindors, her parents were very busy and couldn't spend as much time with her. But the big thing was that the Dark Mark was cast at the Quidditch World Cup after a Death Eater attack.
Hermione had a bad feeling that this year would completely change how she would be as a Gryffindor. She sat in the compartment on the Hogwarts Express, reading the Daily Prophet that had updates on the attack. None of the Death Eaters were apprehended and it frustrated Hermione that the Aurors couldn't find them.
The boys talked about Quidditch, as usual and she opened her Hogwarts A History book to read while they badgered away about that darned wizard sport.
Elsewhere on the train sat 2 young men; one had stunning violet eyes, tanned skin and pitch black hair. The other had sky blue eyes, chocolate brown hair and pale skin.
They were going to Hogwarts for the first time but they were not 1st years, no they were entering as 4th years. The black-haired boy's name was Blaise Zabini and his friend was named Kaliban LeFebvre.
They were homeschooled by their mothers and they couldn't wait to go to Hogwarts and make new friends. Both boys were purebloods but they were kept away from that ideology by their mothers; who were neutral in the First Wizarding War.
The train came to an abrupt stop and everyone knew that they were at the station and would be starting another year at Hogwarts.
Blaise and Kaliban stood with the first years and were going to be sorted first. Professor Dumbledore stood up to the podium to announce the divergence from the usual system.
He started "we have 2 students who will be starting the year here but they will be sorted as 4th years, can Blaise Zabini and Kaliban LeFebvre come to the front of the group and we will start the sorting will Blaise".
Blaise sat down on the stool and felt the Sorting Hat being dropped on his head.
The hat cried out "SLYTHERIN!" and Blaise smiled and sat at the end; reserving a seat for Kaliban.
Kaliban then walked and sat on the stool and the process was repeated for him. "SLYTHERIN!" screamed the Hat. Kaliban was beaming and he rushed to sit beside Blaise at the Slytherin table. Little did they know that a young 14-year old blond boy was staring at them.
Draco Malfoy had been told by his parents that their friends Antonio and Claudia Zabini's son would be coming to Hogwarts this year. He also heard from them that Claudia's childhood best friend Phoenix LeFebvre's son would be joining them as well.
He also knew that they were raised neutral but he believed that he could change their status and make them join the Dark Lord.
The Golden Trio saw the newcomers and Hermione said to the boys "they don't look evil, and I hear from others that they are neutral".
Ron scoffed and said "if you're not good you're evil. That's what my mom always says".
Harry didn't want to think about them and so they dropped the conversation. But elsewhere, Blaise and Kaliban were having the same conversation, but through Occlumency that was shielded from everyone.
"The supposedly Golden Trio seem like nice people" Kaliban told his best friend.
"Yeah, but something feels weird" Blaise said and Kaliban looked at him questionably.
"How do you mean?" Kaliban asked, for he was confused.
"I feel a certain attachment to the young woman, like I know her, but we have never met before. It's weird, I think I'll tell my mom about it when I owl her" Blaise said and his friend nodded.
The houses then adjourned and went to their separate dormitories. Blaise and Kaliban got their own dormitory and they began to owl their mothers.
Blaise's letter said:
I got Slytherin and I know you'll be proud of me. I saw this one girl, her name is Hermione Granger and I felt a weird connection to her. I felt like I have a bond and have met her before, but I never have. Can you tell me why I feel this way? Everyone seems excepting that Kaliban and I are in Slytherin but I don't know if they're going to be excepting of the fact that we are neutral in this war.
Love ya, talk to you soon,
Blaise sealed his letter up as did Kaliban and they called their owls. Blaise's grey and purple owl named Violet came in and he sent the letter off with her as did Kaliban with his black owl he named Smoky.
Blaise and Kaliban watched the owl fly off into the night sky and they prepared themselves for bed.
Elsewhere in the castle, Hermione was also getting ready for bed and she still couldn't stop thinking about Blaise and his friend. She had a sort of weird feeling that she knew him but had never met him. He was a pureblood wizard and she was a muggleborn witch, there was no way that they would ever have met before today.
Hermione let it go and eventually fell asleep.