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Topics - Shirley Webb

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Archived Applications / Shirley Webb
« on: 08/08/2018 at 09:52 »
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Application for Hogwarts School


Name: Shirley Webb

Birthday: 12th January

Hometown: Pendle, Lancashire

Bloodline: Pureblood

Magical Strength (pick one): Divination

Magical Weakness (pick one): Charms

Year (pick two): Third, Second


On a cold night in 1612, more than twenty people gathered at Malkin Tower atop Pendle Hill to dance under the moon and practice the Dark Arts. Elizabeth Device gathered the masses under the heavens while her son James stole a sheep from a neighbour to feed the guests. All night they carried on, dancing and chanting until the early hours of the next morning.

Though the evening had evolved into a festival of frenzy, it had started out as a protest against the incarceration of four women, among which the mother and daughter of Elizbeth Device. All four of them would, in time,  be tried for maleficium – causing harm by witchcraft. The victim of their latest curse was a pedlar who had refused to sell the women pins which they imbued with power to perform various spells. Unfortunately for Elizabeth, the party of protest did more harm than good. Eight more people from the area were seized and convicted, while Malkin Tower was torn down.

Shirley always felt a stab of annoyance when tourists gawked at Pendle Hill, waxing lyrical about the exploits of the very last coven in England. Any witch worth her salt knew that none of those women had any true power. The handmade metal pins that they’d used to treat warts and cast love spells were little more than props used to confuse and entice.

The real magic of the region could not be found on hilltops or inside towers. Instead, it revealed itself inside clusters of sheds where weaving looms gathered strands of cotton and wove them into cloth and other textiles. The industry had sustained the local population of Pendle since medieval times. So long as the looms worked their magic, the people of Pendle could go to bed on full stomachs.

Shirley’s parents were second generation weavers. Her grandfather bought a shed shortly after the Great War, a transaction that would change his life. Not only did the modest building provide additional shelter during air raids, but he was also able to clothe his family in hard times. Nowadays the Webb family’s focus is on enterprise rather than survival; the fabric woven on the loom is sold to several manufacturers that specialise in Quidditch robes.

Even though magical weaving was in Shirley’s blood, she knew that she could pursue any future that her heart desired. Both of her parents encouraged her to explore her own interests. It served as a comfort to know that her family did not depend on her to continue the business; her much older cousins Cecil and Barnaby were far more likely to take up the (woven) mantle.

Instead, Shirley roamed the hillsides as she pleased, exploring Lancashire life in all its glory. She loved towers, finding the tall upright structures both enchanting and practical. Blacko Tower provided a secluded haven where the young girl could practice Gobstones to her heart’s content. Since Pendle was still a muggle dominated area despite its history, Shirley couldn’t risk honing her flying skills. It was no great loss; flying and Quidditch were pointless pastimes.


House Request: While I don’t think Shirley would be wildly out of place anywhere, I believe she’d be happiest in Gryffindor or Ravenclaw. She is confident, reliable and well balanced –all admirable traits-, yet the efficient exterior hides lofty ideals of lustre. She is also a dedicated student with a shrewd mind. Basic wand work remains a struggle, but thankfully she excels in both theory and the more practical subjects.   

Appearance: The decision to cut her hair short wasn’t one that Shirley agonized over for very long. Her thick, wavy hair took hours to dry properly and the elastic bands used as hair ties stretched far too quickly. It was a risk, but the cut suited her perfectly. Even her blue eyes were suddenly more visible.

Besides, people often confused her for a red-haired muggle girl of roughly the same age that still lived in Pendle. Since she trimmed her tresses, that has mercifully stopped.


Option 2:

That rat of his was in for it now.

The gray little rascal had disappeared from his clutches at breakfast. Again.

Before Hugh even knew what was happening, Merlin had shot across the floor, somehow managing to avoid all the feet walking across the hall and had escaped through the open doors.

Which meant that Hugh was now stomping through rows of flowers and other various flora, searching for the small creature. It was like the rat knew Hugh was allergic to most flowers. Merlin always chose to run to the gardens whenever he got away from Hugh. It was as if the rat did not want to have him for an owner.

Hugh had named his pet Merlin because he had hoped the powerful name would give the rat more incentive to be more than a rat. Not that he expected Merlin to change into a wizard or anything, but rats were just so...useless, for the most part. With a name like Merlin, Hugh thought it might give the rat purpose.

The only purpose Merlin seemed to have was getting away from Hugh as often as possible.

As the fifth year trudged into the second row of flowers, not taking much care to avoid trampling the first row, he felt the first sneeze building up pressure in his nose and behind his eyes.

"You blasted rat! Where are you?"

He pulled apart a section of bright red flowers; he didn't know what they were called because he despised flowers, and ducked his head low to peer into the depths of the flowerbed. It was moving closer in proximity to the flowers that finally did it. Hugh took in three great breaths and then let out an almighty sneeze. It was strong enough to disturb some of the dirt on the ground before him.

Groaning, he stood up again and wiped his nose on his sleeve. It was as he was turning his head, his nose running up and down his arm, that movement in his peripheral vision caught his attention. Normally one who preferred to put his best face forward, Hugh was a bit embarrassed to be caught wiping his runny nose on his robes.

Nevertheless, Hugh put on his best haughty voice. albeit a bit thickly with his plugged nose and said, "Can I help you with something? It is not polite to stare."


Shirley had been paying little attention to the older boy’s bumbling trek through the flower beds. It was clear he was looking for a lost pet, so she thought it best to just let him get on with it. Since she didn’t know which way the rat escaped, she would be of very little help anyway.

Instead of acknowledging his presence, she turned her attention back to the wooden hoop that lay in her lap. The slightly grainy surface was now covered in flowery motifs that Shirley had drawn on with her brand new set of muggle style markers. It was a painstaking process, but Shirley thought she’d been doing really well. Though she wasn’t particularly artistic, the flowers in the nearby beds had provided enough inspiration and guidance for the embellishments to look realistic.

It was only as the boy sneezed loudly and actually wiped his nose on his robes that Shirley’s gaze sharpened in the intruder’s direction. She moved the hoop onto the grass and got to her feet. By this time the boy had spotted her and was taking his frustration out on her.

"Can I help you with something? It is not polite to stare."

“You help me? I doubt you’d be able to,” Shirley responded with a shrug of her right shoulder. Instead of looking straight at the boy’s face, her eyes kept trailing down to the sleeve he’d just wiped his nose on. She didn’t mean to stare, but somehow she couldn’t focus on anything else.

“Though in the future, perhaps you’d like to use one of these,” she said after another beat, pulling a clean pocket handkerchief from her own robes. She held the now unfolded square out to him, bouncing it in the air, hoping he’d take it.

“Your robes will thank you.”


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