Categories > Books > Harry Potter

The Green Badge of Courage

by sea0tter12 0 reviews

When Neville gets his toad as a gift, he doesn't realize it means so much more.

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: G - Genres: Drama - Characters: Neville - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2007-04-08 - Updated: 2007-04-09 - 1032 words - Complete

"Neville, go put on clean robes and get straightened up. Your Uncle Algie is coming to dinner tonight to help celebrate your Hogwarts letter! Won't that be lovely?"

Neville, a small round boy just turned 11, didn't think that would be very lovely at all. He had a great dislike for Uncle Algie, who had once thrown him off the Blackpool Pier to see if he would float, back when they thought he was a Squib. It had been Uncle Algie who had finally, accidentally, discovered his magic when he had dangled Neville out of a window and mistakenly dropped him. Luckily, Neville bounced, and everyone was so happy that he had magic, they hadn't said a word to his uncle about dropping him. Ever since, his uncle brought it up every chance he got -- "Remember, son, when I dropped you out the window? Oho! You bounced so high we didn't think you'd come back down!" Neville's Gran would smile, every time, until she glanced over at Neville and found some small thing wrong to chastise him about.

Neville sulked on the way up to his room. He'd much rather look through "One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi," his herbology textbook they had picked up today at Diagon Alley, along with all of his other supplies. His Gran hadn't gotten him an animal, but he was hoping she'd surprise him later with one of those great, beautiful owls he had seen in the window of one of the shops.

He was just pulling on his clean robes when Gran called up to tell him his uncle was there, to come down and visit. He looked longingly at the book, then walked out of his room and down the staircase.

Uncle Algie was a round, red-faced man who laughed very loudly. Today was no exception as he pounded Neville hard on the back and chortled. "It's about time you got down here, son! I've got a surprise for you!" With that, he pulled a small, ugly toad out of the pocket of his robes and held him out to Neville, grinning widely. Neville looked at the toad for a few silent seconds, then glanced at his Gran, who was beaming at him and his uncle. "Well, go on boy, take it. And say thank you to your uncle."

Neville didn't want to take it, and he didn't want to say thank you, but he did both, holding the toad away from him and looking at it stupidly. His uncle glanced at his Gran, and they both shared a small smile, clearly thinking that Neville was overwhelmed with joy at the gift.

"It's to congratulate you on getting your Hogwarts letter! We never thought we'd see this day, sure enough!" his uncle said. "So, what are you going to name him?"

Neville said the first thing that popped into his mind. "Trevor."

"Well, that's no name for a toad! That's so plain and ordinary! You need to come up with something special! Something like Bufonida or Rana?"

Neville thought to himself that Trevor suited the toad very much. "No, I think I'll name him Trevor."

His uncle looked over at his Gran, who looked disapprovingly at Neville. "Come now, Neville, I think you can do better than that."

Neville felt a small spark of anger start to grow in him. Nothing he did was ever good enough! It was hard to stand in the face of his grandmother's disapproving glare, but he decided he wasn't going to back down on this one small thing.

"No! His name is Trevor, and I think it's good enough!"

Gran and Uncle Algie looked surprised at the angry outburst. There was a moment of silence, then his Gran said, "Fine. Go put him up in your room, and make sure you wash your hands. Dinner is ready." With that, Neville turned and walked up to his room, his toad -- Trevor -- in his hands, and a small grin of success on his face.


Wandering the train with the bossy, bushy-haired girl looking for his toad, Neville was overwhelmed and trying to keep anyone from seeing him cry. He didn't know very many people going to Hogwarts, no one he'd be able to sit with anyway, and he felt a little lost without Trevor in his pocket. He had quickly grown attached to the toad after his initial reluctance, and Trevor helped to remind him that he could be brave -- if he could stand up to his Gran, he could probably do just about anything, he reckoned.

As it was now, he followed the girl around because he didn't know what else to do. She poked her head into all the compartments, asking rather bossily about his toad. Neville wished he could just sink into the floor, but he had to find Trevor! In one compartment he caught a glimpse of a scar on one boy's forehead, and he thought he might know who the boy was, but he refrained from saying anything. Surely Harry Potter would want nothing to do with him.

As the train ride ended and he still hadn't found Trevor, Neville began to wonder if he'd lost him for good this time. Wouldn't his Gran have something to say about that? He followed the bossy girl silently, pausing for a moment when he realized who else was in the boat, before getting in as well. As the boat glided toward the castle, something akin to dread settled in his stomach as he looked at it towering over them. He wouldn't be able to do this -- he wasn't good enough to be here. Even his Gran had seemed surprised that he had gotten his lettter. The dread grew heavier until he thought he would throw up as the boats docked and the students got out.

But then -- "Oy, you there! Is this your toad?" The large giant of a man had found Trevor! All the fear and dread melted away for a moment in his joy at having Trevor back, and as he followed the other students up to the castle, one hand clutching at the toad now in his pocket, he felt like he could face anything.
Sign up to rate and review this story