Remington Burnham

May 17, 2020, 8:35 p.m.

Try, Try Again?

“You don’t suck,” Remington said kindly, looking up from her current project. “I can’t do pretty much anything Professor McKindy is asking me to right now.”

At this point in her animagus training, Remington had expected to be closer to a full transformation. She certainly didn’t expect to be an animagus already, but being able to do something to her body had been the plan. If she was going to transform by the end of her sixth year like Danny DuBois and Rose Farnon, she had a lot of work to do.

The Draco hadn’t expected to be so frustrated by Professor McKindy’s approach to animagus training. She practically idolized the wizard. Before attending Rocky Mountain International for her first year, she’d definitely read a few of his published articles in what could only be described as fangirl induced anticipation. Up until now, she’d excelled in his classes and it seemed like they agreed on everything, academically. For the first time, she realized that she and Professor McKindy might have differing approaches to magic.

When it came to animagus training, Professor McKindy was very… holistic. He focused on knowing who you were and then on working magic. They did lots of magical meditation to try and determine how their magic felt to them as individuals, so they could learn how to manipulate their magic most effectively. It was great in theory, but Remington hated it. She couldn’t just sit there and do something repetitive and “calming.” She was supposed to meditate and do simple spells to figure out how using her magic made her body feel, but Remington Burnham could not think of a single time she hated magic more.

Sitting in a room and thinking about her body - it made her anxious. It was like she could feel every roll, every imperfection, every wrong thing about her. And it made working her magic nearly impossible. Things that should have been easy for her weren’t when she tried to follow Professor McKindy’s rules. The longer she tried, the worse she felt. She felt her body grow, as if she was taking up more and more unnecessary space, and it made her stomach turn. She could only do it during the lessons; she couldn’t bring herself to try outside of the classroom.

So, in true Remington fashion, she consulted the library.

One of the books she found indicated that there were other approaches - trying to change one part of your body at a time - that were a little less “be one with nature.” It focused more on her nonverbal and wandless skills. That was something Remington felt she could do. Her wandless magic had improved enough to allow her to change a porcupine into a pincushion both silently and wandlessly, but something still wouldn’t let her start changing parts of her body. She glanced down at the pincushion in front of her and sighed.

“Same as you,” she answered honestly. “I don’t think it should be this hard, either.” Remington resisted the urge to tangle her fingers into her brown curls and shook her head to try and shake off the frustration. “It’s hard to run into an obstacle you can’t seem to get past.” She looked at Anssi and offered a tired smile. “Maybe we’re just working too much. Is that even possible?”

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