Name: Lacey Burke
DOB:13 November (Scorpio)
Face Claim: Anya Taylor-Joy
Home away from Hogwarts: Moseworth (England), Giethoorn (The Netherlands)
Strengths: Divination, Potions, Transfiguration
Wand: 11 inch Maple with Unicorn Hair Core, unyielding
Parents: Edmond and Klaudia Burke
Notable Relatives: Edna, Temporary Guardian (deceased)
I have never been fond of snow and ice. If humans were supposed to waddle around in the cold all day, we would have been born with coats already growing on our backs. Yes, it would be very uncomfortable to run around with a long coat flapping around your legs all the time (almost like having a very wide tail!), but at least we would not have had to bother to buy warm, expensive clothes or wear vests under the rest of our clothes. It is also a very simple fact that being bundled up like some type of muggle hobo is uncomfortable. Not nearly as uncomfortable as shivering and trembling with cold, of course, but it is very difficult to bend your arms if you are wearing layer upon layer to protect you from the chill. It would have been simpler if there was just no winter season at all.
Just so you know, I have always despised the winter season, even if my favourite holiday is smack bang in the middle of the frostiness. But it was during one winter that my life changed completely and I am still not sure if it was for the better or not.
I remember being six years old and standing on ice. My mother had dressed me for the occasion, taking care to bundle me up as snugly as she possibly could. I think I wore three sweaters that day and a long dark robe, but I was still cold. My feet were adorned in the prettiest purple ice skates that a little girl could possibly wear, but my toes felt like frozen peas even inside the thick woollen socks. My mum was twirling around on the ice, elegant as a butterfly and I think my father was chasing her around, but I can’t really recall. They were skating around on a frozen lake not too far from our home.
Home was a tiny, box-like house with two floors, a tile roof and a vegetable patch off to one side. I never understood why my father bothered with the little garden. Nothing ever grew in there anyway, so I think he was just trying to humour his pretty young wife, like he so often did. We lived on the outskirts of Moseworth, one of those really tiny wizarding communities in Southern England. There was a paved arena where markets were held, one brick building used for most meetings and of course the lake, which doubled as an ice rink in the winters.
But back to that day.
Standing off on my own like that, I was certain that I was going to succumb to the cold. I could feel goose bumps creeping up all over my arms and my back. My ears were already a flaming red and I had to keep pinching my nose to keep the warmth in it. My one wish was not to go and have fun while trying to catch my flighty mum, but to be warm and completely safe. It didn’t seem like they were going to finish any time soon so I sat down, waiting patiently while trying to rub some warmth into my arms. I was sitting for less than a minute when it happened: The ice simply gave way under me and before I knew it, I was inside the icy water, struggling to stay afloat with all the clothes that were wrapped around my tiny body. I could see my mum and father scurrying over, desperately trying to fish me out of the water but it was an old woman who finally saved me by simply casting spell to get me out.
To say that she scolded my parents would be a bit of an understatement. My father was completely ashen faced by the time she had finished talking to them and my mother was weeping into one of her sleeves. What happened afterwards I am not sure about, but two weeks later she started tutoring me, teaching me the very basics of magic. Her name was Edna, which was a strange name as far as I was concerned, but not nearly as strange as her appearance. She was absolutely tiny, with large round spectacles and chestnut hair that curled wildly across her high forehead. Her entire home always smelled like cinnamon, though after many years in her company I hardly smelled it any more. She tutored me up to the age of ten and then, sadly, she announced that she was about to move away to join her family in Bulgaria.
The events that followed would seem quite strange to most people, but you must understand that my parents struggled quite a bit in those years. My mother was very young when she married my father. She was just nineteen at the time and I don’t think she was completely ready and able to raise a child. My father, twenty years older than my Mum, was the bread winner and he wasn’t exactly brilliant at that. He did a lot of freelance work, sponsoring inventive young wizards whose patents had been rejected by the Ludicrous Patents Office. Needless to say, we couldn’t exactly be called wealthy. So when Edna asked if it was possible for me to move with her to Bulgaria, Edmond and Klaudia accepted on the condition that she did not send me to Durmstrang but instead, kept tutoring me herself. Edna obliged, which is why I have never set foot in a wizarding school. In the end this promise paid off very well, as we only stayed in Vratsa for a short time before travelling to the Netherlands. Through all of this, my education remained Edna's highest priority.
It was a little bit difficult growing up like that. I wasn’t the most studious pupil, nor was I the most attentive. My eyes used to wander to the nearest window during lessons and I would wish that I could be outside, playing with some of the other children. When I actually admitted as much to Edna on one occasion, she sat me down and explained that wishing could be something dangerous. She actually said that she believed that I melted the ice right out from under me that day at the rink and that if I kept wishing like that, I could get myself into some serious trouble. I do believe that it is sheer nonsense, this wishing business of hers. I cannot remember the last time I actually received what I really wanted, so believing that you could make something come true when you concentrate enough is just silly. You can’t do the impossible by simply wishing and I think I only fully realised that months later, when her health took a turn for the worst.
She was sick for three months but kept going with my tutoring despite the coughs and the sniffles. One week before her death, Mum actually came to visit and that was when I realized that she was at her very last. How I wished then! I wished that the one person who taught me so much could stay just a little bit longer. I even promised myself that I would pay more attention when she was talking to me and that I would make an effort to memorise all that she wanted me to, but it was to no avail. When Edna closed her eyes for the final time, Mum took me back with her. And since neither of my parents can teach me what I need to know about magic, they've since shipped me off to Hogwarts.
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