Hillary Potter and the Boredom of the Phoenix

Hillary Potter stood at the precipice of a precipitous decision. The Democratic Magical Convention was three weeks away and she still didn’t have a date. She had options: There was Julian Caster, a fellow Gryffindor, who certainly had promise. But Caster was only a first-year at Hogwarts, and Hillary had no idea how he would perform on the magical stage. Elizabeth Warlock -- an ambitious Ravenclaw prefect -- would turn some heads, but the two strong-willed wizards found each other unpleasant on a personal level.

That left Hillary with one obvious, safe choice: Timotonous Kaine from Hufflepuff. Yes, he was dull, and not particularly pleasing to the eye. But everybody seemed to agree that -- aside from Helga Hufflepuff herself -- there had never been a Hufflepuff as "Hufflepuff" as Timotonous Kaine. He was loyal and honest to a fault, and had been a major supporter of Hillary’s since the beginning of what had turned out to be a particularly tough year for her.

Perhaps Kaine did have a sort of handsomeness to him, Hillary thought, as she mulled him over in her mind. Yes, she thought, his down-to-earth way of speaking and easy-going manner had helped him win a lot of friends, while avoiding ruffling any feathers. Perhaps she would go with the safe choice after all.

Story, calligraphy, and cartoons by Jeremy Pegg.