Abelinda Malfoy was the second and youngest child of Draco Malfoy. She wasn't too bothered about muggles and purebloodedness. She really didn't like potions but she really quite enjoyed herbology. And although she wasn't like her father, she wasn't always nice. In fact she had a mean streak that could be incredibly ugly. But so far in life she hadn't done anything too dreadful. Her best friend was called Milo. He was a muggleborn and quiet and sometimes he was scared of her. He was in Slytherin house too. He live somewhere near the lake district and Abelinda had joined him for a week during the summer. Abelinda punched Milo lightly on the arm.
"You can't say that, I'm a guest"
The two were wearing waterproofs and walking along the edge of a lake near Milo's home in the lake district. The sky was dark and, every now and then, spat down in contempt on the grey lake and distant gloomy island. The wind made the trees restless and messed up Abelinda's long white blonde hair. The road they followed was concrete and had no pavement.
"Only until tomorrow. Then we both have to..." said Milo, becoming sad
"Don't say it." Said Abelinda seriously, glaring at him.
"I don't want to go back early. The school will be all empty and..."
"And you can show me the secret chamber with the rotting snake, like you promised last year. There won't be as many teachers around and..." said Abelinda, looking at him excitedly.
"It's locked up" interrupted Milo remaining sad.
"Then you can convince Miss Glossop she wants to take us down" said Abelinda, not giving in.
"She won't be there!" said Milo.
"Yes she will. She's one of the teachers they've dragged into babysitting us" explained Abelinda.
"Yes! This means Articulate and Dvds and Oh rats, it's Mad Lin" said Milo suddenly losing his excitement and stopping as his eyes fell on a shabby looking man with a long white beard approaching them along the edge of the road. He was wearing a worn coat, a beanie hat and carried a number of old bags. He was walking along with tired determination and an overwhelming grumpiness. He didn't look up or acknowledge them.
Abelinda stopped too. They were stood before a large puddle. Milo leant in to whisper.
"He spends all day everyday just walking around the lake insulting people who get in his way. They tried to take him into care a year ago but he kicked the guy in the nuts. We should crossover."
"No, let's have some fun" said Abelinda looking devious and starting to walk. They walked carefully around the puddle in front of them and then around the old man who huffed and grumbled at them under his breath but didn't look up. They stopped to turn around as he approached the puddle. With a whispered spell he went flying over face first into the puddle.
"Abby, that was mean!" said Milo, running forward but stopping short of the man as he started picking himself up.
"Oh you think you're so clever!" moaned the old man, turning round. He held his hand out and for a moment his eyes flashed golden. Abelinda went flying sideways into the ditch to the side.
"Ow, that hurt!" she yelled, rubbing her right elbow.
"Well then you should think first before throwing old men into puddles."said Mad Lin.
"You tripped!" she shouted, unconvinvingly.
"Do I look like I was born yesterday? " asked the man seriously, glaring at Abby
"You look like you were born in the Stone Age" said Milo quietly, his nose wrinkling. Mad Lin turned to glare at Milo. Abelinda got up and tried to wipe the wet mud off of her clothes.
"I am older than you can imagine!" said the man snarkily.
"How old?" asked Abelinda indignantly.
"I... I don't know exactly. But I've been walking this path before they put this horrible mess down on it. Long long before that."
"Why?" asked Milo. This seemed to throw the old man.
"... None of my business your rude little villains! What would you care, throwing me down, soaking me through then asking personal questions like that!" said Mad Lin, looking as if he was about to cry. Abelinda looked slightly guilty and Milo changed the subject.
"Why did your eyes light up?" he tried to look less scared, but he was only slightly successful.
"Why do you ask so many questions?" returned Mad Lin.
"I've never seen anyone's eyes light up when they've done magic before" said Milo.
"And I suppose you've seen hundreds of people do magic" Abelinda and Milo looked at each other with a confused look, then back to Lin.
"Well, let me see, there are ten people per house per year, so that makes forty in a year for five years so that's 200, plus 5 in a year in the 6th and 7th years so 240, then there's 3 potions teachers, 3 astrology teachers, 3..." started Abelinda, counting off on her fingers.
"Didn't you go to School, Lin?" asked Milo interrupting.
"Didn't have one in my time" said Lin, starting to walk again. Milo and Abby fell in beside him.
"But Hogwarts was formed hundreds of years ago" said Abelinda, obviously.
"Told you, I'm older than I look. And my name's not Lin" said Mad Lin walking doggedly.
"What is it then?" asked Milo.
"Merlin" stated Mad Lin.
Abby burst into hysterics. Milo and Lin stopped to look at her. Milo looking worried and Mad Lin looking un-amused and feed up.
"That's priceless. Milo, he really is mad, he thinks he's Merlin!" Milo tried to suppress a giggle.
"I don't THINK I'm Merlin, I AM Merlin. That is my name." Said Lin fiercely.
"So you're telling me the 'greatest wizard ever born' spends all day walking around a pond dressed as a bum kicking people in the whatsits" laughed Abby, clutching her sides. Lin's eyes went sad again and he started to walk. Milo stopped laughing and glared at Abby. Then he ran after Lin, followed shortly by Abby.
"Please, Lin.. Merlin, why do you walk around Avery lake?" Lin looked at Milo for a second and thought. He took a deep breath.
"I'm waiting." His voice seemed forced.
"Waiting for what?"
"For Arthur" His voice nearly broke and a tear fell down his cheek. For a moment he just looked at Milo sadly, but then he brushed the tear away with his dirty jacket and started walking.
"Now leave me to walk in peace!"
Abby came to stand by Milo.
"Leave him, Milo, he is insane" said Abby more seriously, grabbing his arm
"Abby, what if he is Merlin?" asked Milo, looking at her.
"Oh, come on Milo! He's probably lost his mind from walking round a lake for years. There's nothing we can do to help him"
"We should do something, say something." Said Milo.
"Why?" cried Abelinda.
"Because you threw him in a puddle and I feel sorry for him." Abelinda didn't look convinced.
"Look, even if he is insane, I think he really lost someone. He actually cried. He was really upset. Don't you have any heart Abby?" Abelinda looked hurt for a moment.
"Well, what do you want to do?" asked Abby giving in.
"Why don't we take him to that pub around the corner? Get him some chips or something to say sorry."
"Fine, you softy, we'll take him to the pub." Said Abby, smiling slightly.
Half an hour later found the two children and Lin sat on a bench outside "The crown and sword", eating chips and drinking coke. Lin ate hungrily with his fingers, shovelling straight into his mouth, which was as close to the paper plate as he could get it. Abby sat awkwardly next to him and opposite her Milo had got his phone out.
"Oh, Miss Glossop has posted on facebook that the school musical is going to be the Lion King, awesome!"
"You've got Miss Glossop as a friend on Facebook?" asked Abby, her eyebrow rising. Lin continued eating, oblivious.
"Yeah!" said Milo enthusiastically. Abby rolled her eyes.
"Can I see?" asked Abby. Milo handed his phone over.
"Oh, is that her boyfriend?" asked Abby, looking at a photo of Trish standing next to a tall young man with blonde hair and blue eyes. They were both pulling stupid faces.
"I don't know, I don't think so. I think it's an old school friend."
"He's cute! What do you think, Lin?" said Abby, holding the phone up.
"Why are you asking me if I think a man is..." Lin's eyes blew wide and he dropped the chip he was holding. He went to grab the phone.
"That's not Arthur, that's Miss Glossop's friend..." Abby started scrolling.
"Merlin's itchy boxers, his name is Arthur!"
"Do you mind leaving my underwear out of this!" yelled Lin.
"Give me the phone!" yelled Milo, holding his hand out. Abby passed it over, Lin still looking like he would try and grab at it.
"His name is Arthur Pent, he's a teaching assistant in London and he was born in 1985" concluded Milo.
"It's a coincidence. You are not Merlin, and that is not King Arthur" said Abby pointing at Lin then at the phone, speaking slowly as if trying to speak to a child.
"It isn't! I must speak to him, you must take me to him!" said Lin, still excited.
"We can't, we don't know where he lives" said Milo
"Won't your thingy tell you?" asked Lin, desperately.
"No! People don't put that kind of information on facebook!" said Abby, obviously.
"Okay, this is getting really strange" said Milo staring at his phone.
"What?" asked Abby.
"Arthur posted on Miss Glossop's facebook."
"He wrote 'Hey Patty, can't wait to see you at this posh joint you've got a gig at. Save some caviar and cucumber sandwiches for me. See ya soon! Xxx"
"You mean he's coming to Hogwarts? Can she do that?"asked Abby
"She's Miss Glossop, she doesn't care. She replied 'Sorry Pumba, all the caviar is gone already. I've got a sleeping bag ready and waiting. Dinner is at 7 tomorrow.'" Said Milo.
"'Pumba?'" said Lin.
"I don't even want to ask." Said Milo.
"You must take me to this place. I must see him" said Lin, turning to finish his chips quickly.
"Miss Glossop's going to kill us..." muttered Abby.