Four key players and an observer, from left to right: The Prewett twins, Frank Longbottom, Augustus Rookwood and Rodolphus Lestrange.
On the 26th of August, 1968, Molly Prewett eloped with Arthur Weasley, breaking off an eminently respectable engagement with Julian Abbott to the dismay of her parents and the delight of wizarding high society’s gossipmongers.
Less than a month later, the Flitterbies quarrelled over whether or not Molly had been right to marry Arthur Weasley, commonly considered a blood-traitor by all the respectable pureblood families. You might think it was none of their business, after all Molly had the right to marry whoever she chose, but as Rodolphus was very fond of pointing out, a pureblood’s every action had political consequences - and one had to consider those consequences before acting.
In fact it was Rodolphus who made the whole thing worse by insisting that Molly had no individual worth, not without her family name and blood status, and then arguing (pigheadedly, I might add) that this association made her a blood-traitor and somehow inferior to the rest of the wizarding world. I mean, there’s a reason they call red la couleur de diable; it’s not like the Prewett twins could exactly walk away from that insult without a murmur. Of course Gideon had to try and make Rodolphus eat his words.
And Rodolphus, obstinate pig that he was, had to refuse point blank and then further fan the flames by going on and on about how it was people like Molly who would destroy the wizarding world - and people like Arthur, wanting to associate with muggles and learn how to do things the muggle way when clearly, our way was superior; hadn’t anyone ever studied their history and not that rubbish Binns teaches us either? But one day, he insisted, people like Molly would get what was coming to them. There were people, he said, already rallying, who would purge the wizarding world of all its many undesirables.
The Prewetts tried to force him into backing down. Frank Longbottom - Frank Longbottom, one of the most cheery and amiable souls I’ve ever known - actually stood up and walked over to where the Prewetts were standing and told Rodolphus he’d better eat his words or he’d regret it.
Rodolphus only sneered and drew a line down the centre of the room.
This wasn’t a personal matter anymore. He was asking us to make a stand, make a political stand. A few of us considered the political ramifications of our stances. Spencer Davies, a Slytherin from a minor pureblood family, crossed over and joined the Gryffindors (turns out he was seeing a muggleborn in secret). Pip Zabini, a Gryffindor, chose neutrality - didn’t want to damage his father’s business interests. Mars Greengrass, also a Gryffindor and a scion of one of the sacred twenty eight, crossed to the Slytherin side because he was damned if he was going to let the muggleborns run the wizarding world to ruin.
Most, however, chose their allegiances by house colours. Most of Gryffindor rallied to the Prewetts’ side - for Merlin’s sake you don’t abandon your housemates because some guy stands up and makes a half-arsed speech about a brave new world and dodgy revolutionaries. Slytherin, naturally, rallied to Rodolphus’ side because if there’s one thing Slytherins can do, it’s stick by their housemates through thick and thin. Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw tried to maintain neutrality, albeit by very different methods. Some of the Hufflepuffs stood along the line and obstinately refused to budge even when they were shouted down for being cowards by both the Gryffindors and the Slytherins. Us ‘claws tried to sneak out before we were forced to make a definite stand and Merlin how the other houses hated us for it.
Back then, the line seemed so ephemeral. A childish argument over drunken ramblings and half-arsed politics - and that’s what most of us Ravenclaws and the other Hufflepuffs thought. It would all blow over in a matter of weeks and things would be back to normal again. But then the mysterious deaths began. The newspapers started running articles wanting to know if it was not better for the muggleborns to remain with their own kind - purely for their good, for they did struggle so with adapting to the magical world. And nobody was content with cold stares across hallways; hexes were cast at the slightest provocation and not just over house cup matters.
The war had begun and without our knowing it, we had already picked our sides, whether consciously or unconsciously. Those of us who refused to break off old friendships in the name of maintaining neutrality were later pushed into making more and more disastrous choices until we had no other choice but to accept the inevitable and take the mark. So many of the Slytherins, forced by their rhetoric into action, would take the mark in a few years to wear as a badge of pride - only to realize that they could not get their hands covered in blood and yet keep a comfortable job at the ministry at the same time. So many Hufflepuffs would later be mowed down in the crossfire, bravely trying to defend their own.
The war had begun and it so happened that by chance because of an argument between two houses in school, one side was almost exclusively Gryffindor and the other, almost exclusively Slytherin.
This is what happens when you synchronize camera’s shutter speed with a helicopter’s blade frequency
Sherlock + cinemagraph series
That’s What She Said - A queer, Asian-American web series following the lives of 5 friends in Los Angeles. Created out of a desire to see positive Asian representations in the media, as well as to give voice to the often untold stories of queer Asian women, the series chronicles the lives of five fictional characters – Leslie, Rae, Shin, Baby, and Nic – within the queer sphere of the greater Los Angeles area.
"This video shows a rabbit heart that has been kept beating outside of the body in a nutrient and oxygen-rich solution. The new cardiac device — a thin, stretchable membrane imprinted with a spider-web-like network of sensors and electrodes — is custom-designed to fit over the heart and contract and expand with it as it beats."
Here is a 5-minute demonstration with my newest watercolor brush for Photoshop, available when you purchase the Real Watercolor Set.