Molly’s guidance

Harry meets Mrs Weasley for the first time

Extract from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

by J.K. Rowling

At that moment a group of people passed just behind him and he caught a few words of what they were saying.

‘– packed with Muggles, of course –’

Harry swung round. The speaker was a plump woman who was talking to four boys, all with flaming red hair. Each of them was pushing a trunk like Harry’s in front of him – and they had an owl.

Heart hammering, Harry pushed his trolley after them. They stopped and so did he, just near enough to hear what they were saying.

‘Now, what’s the platform number?’ said the boys’ mother. 
‘Nine and three-quarters!’ piped a small girl, also red-headed, who was holding her hand. ‘Mum, can’t I go ...’

'You’re not old enough, Ginny, now be quiet. All right, Percy, you go first.

What looked like the oldest boy marched towards platforms nine and ten. Harry watched, careful not to blink in case he missed it – but just as the boy reached the divide between the two platforms, a large crowd of tourists came swarming in front of him, and by the time the last rucksack had cleared away, the boy had vanished.

‘Fred, you next,’ the plump woman said.

‘I’m not Fred, I’m George,’ said the boy. ‘Honestly, woman, call yourself our mother? Can’t you tell I’m George?’

‘Sorry, George, dear.’

‘Only joking, I am Fred,’ said the boy, and off he went. His twin called after him to hurry up, and he must have done, because a second later, he had gone – but how had he done it?

Now the third brother was walking briskly towards the ticket barrier – he was almost there – and then, quite suddenly, he wasn’t anywhere.

There was nothing else for it. 

‘Excuse me,’ Harry said to the plump woman.

‘Hullo, dear,’ she said. ‘First time at Hogwarts? Ron’s new, too.’ She pointed at the last and youngest of her sons. He was tall, thin and gangling, with freckles, big hands and feet and a long nose.

‘Yes,’ said Harry. ‘The thing is – the thing is, I don’t know how to –’

‘How to get on to the platform?’ she said kindly, and Harry nodded.

‘Not to worry,’ she said. ‘All you have to do is walk straight at the barrier between platforms nine and ten. Don’t stop and don’t be scared you’ll crash into it, that’s very important. Best do it at a bit of a run if you’re nervous. Go on, go now before Ron.’

Harry Potter and Philosopher's Stone

By J.K. Rowling