Fred and George Gave Me a Tour of Hogwarts – OMG!
James Phelps (Fred Weasley) surprised a group at Warner Bros. Studios Tour in London recently by taking them on a VIP tour of the set. They got to play with wands, ride a Firebolt, and even enter the Chamber of Secrets. You can read that article here or watch the video below. But when I was a student at Hogwarts, I got a tour of the real castle lead by both Fred and George Weasley. Here’s my story:
As a Muggle-born, I was completely lost. It was my first day in a new school away from home, feeling totally alone. There were staircases that moved on their own, trick steps and doors, and a poltergeist wreaking havoc by anyone who looked nervous. I was definitely terrified.
I was trying to blend into the wall after getting out of Charms and attempting to figure out where to go from there. I had the rest of the afternoon free and no idea how to spend my time. I must have looked scared and lost because before I knew it, there were two tall boys with flaming red hair walking up to me. They asked me if I was okay, and once I explained my predicament, they exchanged a mischievous smirk. Next thing I know, I am being swept away on a personal tour of Hogwarts given to me by Fred and George Weasley.
They started leading me downstairs pointing to different paintings and statues along the way. We turned down one of the lower corridors and stopped in front of a painting of fruit. They proceeded to tickle the pear and turned to watch my bewildered expression as the pear morphed into a handle. The painting swung open and oh my goodness! I had never seen such a busy kitchen! There were little creatures running everywhere. The twins explained that these are house-elves and that they do all the cooking and cleaning for the castle. I was amazed. Then the house-elves started bringing over trays and trays of snacks over to us. I was hesitant at first, but after a little encouragement from the twins, I dove right in.
After a few more twists, turns, and staircases, we found ourselves outside Filch’s office. Before I could protest, the lock pick kit was out, and the door was open. They rifled through some drawers looking for some items that Filch had confiscated from them. They showed me how he organized the items so that I can quickly find what he took from me. They pointed out the comfier wooden chair and assured me that no matter what Filch said, he would never use the chains. After letting me practice with the Muggle lock picking kit, we were off to our next destination.
After leaving Filch’s office, Fred winked at George, and George ran ahead. Fred said he forgot something that he had to go get. The conversation kept up as normal, and Fred started talking about a tapestry that we were approaching. He was explaining about the picture when all of a sudden he nudged me into the tapestry. I was expecting to hit the concrete wall behind it; instead, I fell through right into George’s waiting arms. Once I restarted my heart, they started laughing and explained about all the secret passages in the castle. They pulled out a crumpled old piece of parchment, which they tapped with a wand, and a map started to reveal itself. After assuring them I had memorized it, they closed the map, and we snuck out the other end of the tunnel.
They showed me back to the Great Hall and out the massive front door. We wound our way across the grounds. Past the greenhouses full of strange and exotic plants, down by the lake where the giant squid was basking in the setting sun, and right up to the edge of the forest. We wandered in just far enough that the castle was obscured from view. Despite the dangerous stories that the twins told me about the forest, I found myself feeling safe and comfortable with the twins by my side.
They led me out of the forest and toward their most favorite spot on the grounds. They started talking about this strange sport involving broomsticks, balls that try to knock off players, and too many fouls to even list. We walked into the locker room and through the door, out onto the Quidditch pitch, and the twins lit up. I could see the joy on their faces and feel the happiness flooding out of them. As far as Hogwarts goes, this is a place that feels most like home to them. After breaking out their broomsticks and walking me through some of the finer points of the game, they decided to let me try to fly. Laughing, they told me I needed more lessons after I fell off the broom for the third time in five minutes. With the grounds getting dark, we went back to the castle, and they showed me the fastest way back to the Gryffindor common room.
Once we climbed through the portrait hole, the twins lead me to the comfiest armchairs by the fire. We settled in and waited for the rest of our fellow students to return from dinner. I’ve only been here a day, and I think I found two of my best friends. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow has in store with these two by my side.