The door of the common room banged open, letting in a wave of blinding sunlight. Owen did not know how long he had been sitting in expectant silence in the stuffy, dark room. He might have dozed off without realizing it.
Now he leaped to his feet and looked towards the doorway as his new schoolmates filed inside. He did not know what he had expected. Perhaps he thought they would be surprised to see him. Maybe he hoped a few would come to greet him or ask why he had not been at the assembly.
But they walked straight past Owen without giving him a glance, as though he was just another faded brown armchair. He began to feel awkward, standing like a gangling statue in the middle of the room.
Blood rushed hot to his cheeks and his eyes stung. It was the dust in the air, he told himself, he was not going to cry like a baby. Wanting to appear not to mind being ignored, he took out the silver pocket watch and began inspecting its surface. It was the same as the last twenty times he had looked at it.
“That’s an interesting piece.”
A girl was standing in front of him. She had the appearance of a curious mouse, small ears and nose, a pointed face. Owen lifted up the watch for her to see better. Now he did almost cry, flooded with relief that someone had noticed him.
“I know this watch.” The girl said. “It’s from my father’s antiques shop, Antiquities and Oddities.”
She dropped her voice to a hushed whisper and continued, “Are you a wizard?”
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My novel Vikingr is now available on Amazon Kindle.