|FROM THE KITCHEN|
|ON THE STREETS|
|DAILY PROPHET STAFF|
|DAILY PROPHET'S OFFICIAL ARCHIVES|
JUNE 2017, ENGLAND - Lately, there have been a string of murders with methods that are still unknown to the Ministry. The whole incident is very confusing. In the past two weeks, seven -- yes seven -- witches and wizards across London, England have been murdered, and according to all sources, the weapon is laughter.
That's right, readers. Laughter is the culprit here. All seven victims died from uncontrollable laughter, but how do we know that this is murder if they all died from something as common as laughter? Well, according to the Ministry, there were notes attached to each victim when their bodies were discovered. The contents of the notes are apparently too disturbing for public knowledge; all I was able to get was that it was a confession letter from the murderer themselves, stating that they were the one who did it.
Other than the confession to being the culprit, the murderer did not disclose who they were or how it was they were able to kill their victims with laughter. It is still undetermined whether the murderer used Titillando, the Ticking Hex, to make them laugh uncontrollably, or if it was a purposefully incorrect use of a Laughing Potion. There is even talk of the likelihood of other methods used to make these poor victims laugh to their deaths.
Unfortunately, the little information to go by has caused great unease in the wizarding community, for the Ministry are no closer to determining who this obviously disturbed individual is. The Ministry is asking that anyone in the nearby communities of the victims to please step forward with any information they have on these incidents. Likewise, if anyone has any information whatsoever on these incidents, you should also step forward to help the Ministry locate and arrest this person.
This person is clearly not going to stop this attack on the community any time soon; in fact, I heard the note clearly indicates that this is the case. The Ministry is asking the wizarding community to be cautious of any strangers, and not to receive drinks from anyone you do not trust just in case this is in fact potion-related. The Ministry also insists that everyone is not be alone unless completely necessary, and to be vigilant for not only yourself but your family, friends, and anyone else you know. Unfortunately, with this lack of information to go on, there is not much more this reporter can say other than to spread awareness to the community.
We must protect each other from this dreadful situation, and as I stated earlier, if anyone has any information that can lead to the arrest of this criminal, please don't hesitate to inform the Ministry of what you know. I can only hope this person is caught as soon as possible. Stay safe, dear readers.
Hello, wizards and witches! Welcome to this month's edition of the Economy column for the Daily Prophet! Almost all of us know that it's nearing the end of the school year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. That means that soon underage witches and wizards will flood through the streets of Diagon Alley, Hogsmeade, and every store that you can think of.
Many stores eagerly wait for the teenagers to appear. Genevieve Thompson, co-owner of the Camelot Dress Shop with her sister-in-law Morgan Thompson, told our reporter, "Business always increases a lot when summer starts up. It seems that teenagers are so excited to finally get out of school that they spend a lot of their money on whatever catches their eye."
Wizarding economists believe that there will be a large increase of purchases from teenagers. Many stores have also chosen to release new products around this time, to accompany the wave of teen purchases. For example, Quality Quidditch Supplies will be releasing a brand-new broom, named the Lightning Bolt. Manager Harrison Princeton explained, "Hogwarts' Quidditch games may have ended, but that means that a lot of players will be wanting a new broom to play in practice games and train before school starts in the fall."
In other news, there has been much applause for the new Gringotts banking system. For those unaware, there are three different banking processes that you can use. All users automatically have standard banking, with unlimited withdraws and deposits. Private banking, which costs 75,000 galleons monthly, tracks the way you spend the galleons out of your Gringotts account and requires monthly renewal. Finally, business banking, which costs 125,000 galleons monthly, performs the same function as private banking, along with tracking your income and where it comes from. It also allows you to search through your transactions easily and requires a monthly renewal.
It seems that the economy is going well for witches and wizards so far! Hopefully, this can continue throughout the summer and the rest of this year. However, here are a few tips for keeping your galleons flowing this summer.
Make sure to check in at Daily Money every day. Even if you only get fifty galleons, it can still add up. The Wishing Well and Runic Aleatorem are a bit of a gamble but can help you increase your money (just be careful). Stocks give out dividends at the beginning of each month and are a slow way of earning more money When buying new items, check pricing carefully in Owl Search to see if you can get them cheaper. And finally, a good way to avoid spending is to stick a lot of your galleons into Gringotts. That way you can't spend them.
Hopefully, this summer will help you all earn more galleons and keep our HEX economy strong. With that, I wish you all the best, dear HEXians. We'll see you next month at the Daily Prophet!
All over the United Kingdom, mysterious disappearances are taking place. So far, thirty people have disappeared only to reappear or be released from whoever their captors may be. The reports we've received at the Daily Prophet have stated that those who disappeared have reappeared sometimes hundreds of miles away from where they first disappeared. The Ministry of Magic and the Auror Department are at a loss as to what the motive is behind these disappearances. We sent a reporter along to ask the deputy head of the Auror Department, Alaric Potts, to explain the current situation.
"It's a strange case, a very strange case. In all of my twenty years at the Ministry of Magic, I've never known anything like this. Three weeks ago, we received the first report of a man who went missing, and within twenty-four hours of the investigation beginning, the man reappeared. The thing is, he disappeared in Brighton but was found wandering down a country lane in County Cork, Ireland. He was disorientated and had no recollection of what had happened or who had taken him. The healers who treated him gave him a clean bill of health, and that was that. And then, two days later, we received another report. And things have just grown increasingly more confusing since then. We keep hitting brick walls over and over with no solid evidence or concrete leads. What we first thought was some sort of prank or trick has turned into a substantial crime wave."
Deputy Potts had to leave the interview early due to being notified of another missing person case. From what we have gathered, and from our contacts within the Ministry of Magic, there are no tangible links between the victims. None of them have ever met, worked together, or are related. There are no links. No tangible evidence has been recovered from the locations of where the victims had disappeared and reappeared. Since the start of this case, the Auror Department has worked overtime, desperately searching for the culprits behind this strange crime. Time is of the essence as the lead detective believes that as time goes by, there is a chance that the crimes could take a darker turn and lead to injuries or possibly even death of the victims.
We managed to meet up with the first person who was taken, Archibald Poot, 66, of Islington. "I don't remember anything after I'd left work. I was supposed to meet my wife at our favourite restaurant to celebrate my son's promotion, but something happened, and the next I knew of it, I was plodding through a field of cows and up to my knees in mud. Confused and dazed, they've tried spells and all sorts, but it's as if my memories at that time simply didn't exist. I wish I could be of more help, but there's nothing there."
Theories of the culprits and motives behind these strange abductions have bounced between alien abductions, to pranks, to some sort of gang network who are compelling the victims to carry out crimes. The Ministry of Magic will continue to investigate until the culprits are brought to justice.
Only a few more weeks until the end of school and the start of the glorious freedom brought by the summer holidays. And what better way to spend the summer holidays than exploring new countries and cultures, experiencing unique festivals, and having a tonne of fun! So, what's on the radar for this year's summer activities?
Over in Norway, a festival of lights is taking place in the Fjords. Explore the beautiful landscaping of the captivating country by taking a river boat cruise. Track the movements of the Norwegian Selkies travelling towards their summer mating grounds, and if you're lucky, you could catch a glimpse of Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster, who's known to love spending summer in the cooler waters of Norway. While there, enjoy the sights and sounds of the huts that are erected each year to accompany the festival of lights, partake in the mulled wine, the stacks of assorted food stalls, and pick up a souvenir or two!
If you fancy going farther afield, Seoul, South Korea is the place to be! Steeped in Muggle and wizarding history, with its captivating, picturesque locations and its fascinating, vibrant culture, it's the perfect place to spend the summer. And the summer weather is perfect - hot - just (if 'hot' is yoru definition of 'perfect') want you need when little ol' England is dull, grey, and drizzly. Take tours around the ancient castles and visit the sites of historic dragon battles that took place centuries ago, and of course, treat yourselves to at least one adorable, stuffed dragon plushie! You can never have too many. If you're intrigued by the more Muggle side of things, jump on a free tour around Gangnam and explore the entertainment culture and learn about the growing popularity of K-Pop. Even a fair few wizards and witches are obsessed with it.
But if you fancy sticking closer to home and enjoying the sights and sounds of England, there are plenty of places to go! Recently opened, the Young Wizards and Witches Adventure Playground is a must-go for any parent and child. With adventure areas for both adults and children of any age, it's just what any family needs for a week away during summer. With activities such as fishing, grow your own magical tree, and an indoor soft play area with climbing frames, there's something to make everyone in the family happy! And as a bonus, they allow pets to be brought in during the holidays; just make sure they're well-trained!
And if that wasn't enough, the Quidditch Teams of the United Kingdom are opening their doors for young players to attend Quidditch camp this summer! Most of the big named teams are accepting the players for a two-week long extensive course to teach them the basics up to feats such as the Wronski Feint! It's a must-do for all young Quidditch fans, and it'll be a marvellous help for all those aspiring professional players out there!
There are plenty more activities and sights to see over the upcoming summer holidays! For a full list, subscribe to the Daily Prophet and receive the full pamphlet of 'What To Do This Summer Holiday! Helping Hints for Panicking Parents!'
After a tumultuous year in British politics -- the mudslinging, the insults, and a snap general election -- it's finally reaching fever pitch. When Theresa May took power as the Prime Minister after the Brexit vote that forced David Cameron to quit Downing Street, there has been an underlying question. Does Theresa May actually deserve to be the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom? With Britain heading out of the EU in the shocking decision from the referendum last year, May took it one step further by declaring a snap election. The question is why? Why did she feel the need to do this? She was already the Prime Minister. There are many theories, one being the fact that she wants to quit but doesn't want to be a failure. It was a gamble, one that very well might blow up spectacularly in her face.
When it comes down to immigration, not only is there a plan to cap the yearly levels of people coming into Britain, there are also plans that involve international students. As it stands, the manifesto lines out that students who study in Britain will be forced to leave the country once their courses are completed. However, they do have a chance to stay as long as they meet certain criteria, which are thought to be harder to hit with these new changes. There are no details on what these new requirements are.
As always, journalists, the media, politicians, and voters have their own opinions on who should lead their country and how they should do it, so let's take a closer look at just what May has laid out in her manifesto, which she delivered to the country. Theresa May has once again pledged to lower immigration into the United Kingdom. The reality of this goes back to the time she was Home Secretary for David Cameron; she promised the same thing, and each year she failed. The targets she set were unrealistic and downright mind-boggling. How can she be trusted to keep this promise if she couldn't do it before?
Another controversial part of her manifesto and what she was supporting even before the election was the creation of new grammar schools, a very Thatcher-esque policy. And on top of that, she intends to remove free school dinner from primary school students. Which, yet again, seems to reflect her predecessor when she removed free milk from schools. The only thing the children will receive is free breakfast. Compare that with free dinners and you can see that the children will be losing out, as many schools already offer it.
The question left to answer is this: is the election the final nail in the coffin for Theresa May? Or will it be her chance to rise from the political ashes and take control to navigate the country through Brexit and the increased threat to the national security?
Things in the British and Irish Quidditch League championships are heating up as the preliminary rounds progress. Surprisingly, as the early matches have been played, one team has emerged as the clear favourite to take home the trophy. Of course, the surprising thing isn't that only one team is performing so superbly. Rather, it's surprising just which team it is that has taken the league by storm this year. Believe it or not, the Chudley Cannons are making a comeback!
or several decades, the Cannons have been viewed as the supreme underdogs - and not even very good underdogs! The last time they won the League Cup was in 1892. That's right, folks. They haven't come out on top in over a hundred years! In fact, their losing streak became so infamous they changed their team motto from "we shall conquer" to "let's all just keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best" in 1972. Since then, they have only gone further downhill. Until now, that is.
This complete turn of events has provoked a wide variety of responses from giddy exuberance to astonished disbelief. About this sudden turnabout, one die hard Cannons fan remarked, "Ha! I told you the Cannons still had it! I told you they could do it!" Another long-time supporter simply stared at the pitch with his jaw agape. No words could have possibly described his shock as he watched the Chudley Cannons score goal after goal. Viktor Krum, the renowned Seeker, also gave us an opinion on the matter. "This is vonderful! I cannot believe I vos not a Cannons fan all along!"
Since their first unexpected victory this season, the Cannons have attracted a much larger fan base. The amount of spectators at their games has more than tripled, which has led to a large increase in publicity. Several respected dignitaries and celebrities of the Quidditch world have been spotted in the stands wearing the signature bright orange of the Cannons, along with a few players from other teams in the league.
This previously unimaginable rise of the Chudley Cannons has pulled an all-consuming question. Is this the biggest fluke of the season, or is this the real deal? Is this the extent of the Cannon takeover, or will their successes continue to grow increasingly bigger? Will the Cannons return to being a no-name team or will return to their former glory? Only time will tell if they are to be the next new challenger, I suppose, so until then, the world will be watching and waiting in suspenseful silence.
Hello, readers! There wasn't a set theme this month, but as it's coming up to summer, we've had a surge of questions regarding Muggle clothing. After all, even witches and wizards need to be able to go on holiday sometime, and when they do, they need to be able to blend in ...
Dear Daily Prophet,
There is a rumour that wearing socks with sandals is highly looked down upon. Is this true?
Dear Confused Feet,
It depends on which country you are from, but on the whole, I would stay clear of wearing socks with sandals, as it generally garners a few odd looks! The only people I know of who can get away with it are the Germans
Dear Daily Prophet,
I am a wizard who likes a good breeze around my legs in the summer. What clothing would you recommend I wear, or stay away from?
Dear Flowing Robes,
This is a tricky one to answer, but most of the time, shorts are quite open and allow for good air flow. However, stay away from dresses in general, unless you like being the centre of both positive and negative attention!
Dear Daily Prophet,
How do I stop my feet from burning on hot sand? I have very sensitive skin!
Dear In Pain,
I have the same problem and swear by "beach shoes." These are shoes that cover your feet entirely and are yet incredibly light and airy. They are generally used by surfers and water sports enthusiasts, but no-one I've ever met has had an issue with wearing them to the beach!
Dear Daily Prophet,
If I don't want to shave my legs, are tights acceptable while on holiday?
Dear Lazy Witch,
It depends on where you go on holiday, for starters! If it's somewhere very hot, then you must NOT wear tights, unless you want to give yourself heat stroke. If you're going somewhere temperate or cold, then tights would be a perfect alternative for yourself, though I'd still recommend shaving, anyway.
Dear Daily Prophet,
I can't choose a hat to take with me on holiday! I have three different types, and I'm going somewhere very hot. The hats I have are a cap, a wide-brim sun hat, and a beanie. Can you help?
~Indecisive About Headwear
From my personal experience, only one of those hats will provide you with good protection from sunlight, so the wide-brim sun hat is the best option. However, the cap would be the most fashionable and light. Whatever you do, don't wear a beanie! I hope that helps, and best of luck!
The Department of Magical Games and Sports is known for including the following divisions: British and Irish Quidditch League Headquarters, Official Gobstones Club, and the Ludicrous Patents Office. However, what I didn't know was that a new division now exists -- the Duelling Organization. Just as its name states, this division is meant to deal with all kinds of duels -- duelling tournaments held at schools, interschool duelling tournaments, even Duelling Cups!
Of course, the big question is WHY this was never spoken about before. How come we've never heard about it? Why did I only learn about it when I asked the Department about any updates? The problem with this division is that it has yet to be made official, so none of these official duelling tournaments has taken place. I mean, yes, they have a name, a head of department, and even plans on how to go about their duels. If you ask the Department of Magical Games and Sports themselves about this division, though, they have absolutely NO clue! How would they have a clue, after all, if the division has yet to officially exist?
Why? Are duels something they never agreed on? Did they feel like Quidditch tournaments and Triwizard Tournaments were already a hassle that the pain of adding another sport to it would make things worse? I honestly have no idea behind the Ministry's reasons, but I do feel that duels should have a place in the Ministry, too!
For one thing, they're very prevalent in wizarding schools. It not only is played in Hogwarts, Beauxbatons, and Drumstrang. Duels happen in the other known wizarding schools in the world as well! So, what gives? Why doesn't the sport have an official place in the Department?
A witch by the name of Elvira Mace created this division, and she believed that duelling should have the same importance as Quidditch did in the world of wizarding sports. According to her, "Duels are also a sport of skill, memory, and one's ability. It relies on a student's skill to defend themselves and to attack whoever their opponent is (without killing them and without the use of any of the unforgivable curses, of course). It tests one's resourcefulness in trying to think of spells to use. It also tests one's ability to dodge spells and to incorporate what they've learned in the past to the duel they're participating in. It's a very well-rounded sport, and I honestly don't get why it has no department of its own yet!"
She has a point, and I do agree that more light should be shown on duels. I wonder if the Department of Magical Games and Sports sees that too, though? Do they agree with making duelling an official sport? Once the proposal is presented on why the division should exist, will the Department Head agree? Will he see it as too threatening because they created the proposal and the division (even if it wasn't official yet) without his knowledge?
I honestly have no idea just yet, but I do wish the division would be given its due importance and its place in the world of wizarding sports. Duels are present everywhere, after all, so why shouldn't it have its own place? I think it should!
It's June, and as summer begins, students everywhere are being let out of school for the summer holidays. The excitement of summer has arrived, but for many, so has boredom. However, you need not look further for a source of entertainment! Here at HEX, things are as busy as ever! Here are some of the fun events going on here on HEX:
Calling All Selkies
The Merchieftaness Murcus needs you to help save the Merpeople! Irresponsible students have been polluting the Great Lake, and it's causing several unknown illnesses to spread among the Great Lake Selkie Colony. In this four-part event (you can choose which parts to complete), it's up to you to save the Merpeople. The contest includes graphics, creative writing, trivia, and a crossword puzzle. From getting people's attention to getting down to helping, you have your work cut out for you. Can you save the Merpeople of the Great Lake Selkie Colony? Head over to Diagon Alley to take on this challenge!
After the shockingly low results students got on last year's O.W.L.s, the professors needed a plan to help avoid such a disaster again. What they decided to do, to the joy of many students at Hogwarts, was to install a new program, allowing students to have unlimited access to their wands throughout the school. Now, students have a spell book and can learn new spells by doing simple activities on HEX, including but not limited to REs, submitting homework, and reading certain books. Other methods are available, but you have to find them yourself. Now get to it and start exploring; the end-of-year tests are coming up soon!
Arts & Graphics
This June on Arts and Graphics, it's all about plants! For this month's graphics challenge, submit artwork you've done that includes real flowers, a fitting challenge as summer approaches. That's right. The expectation for this is to use actual flowers in an art piece! However, I'm sure all you talented folks will create beautiful artwork for this challenge! For the writing challenge, you're expected to write from the point of view of a plant! The twist is, the plant has to be in a Hogwarts Herbology lesson taught by Professor Sprout! How will you show what it feels like to live life as a plant? Go to the Arts and Graphics forum and show us!
The ladders were climbed, the snakes were ... well ... slid. And in the end, six people came out victorious. Here are the winners of The Daily Prophet's May contest. Their slithery-good prize? 1,000 House Points each!
Congratulations to the winners! Visit The Newsstand again for semi-monthly contests, past issues of The Quibbler and The Daily Prophet, and more!
There's plenty to do here on HEX, it seems. Enjoy the end of school!
Hello, dearies! It's Aunt Edna, the most popular Daily Prophet journalist. Never mind that awful Rita Skeeter. She was so rude. Why, I remember that time at the Christmas party, where she decided it would be funny to … my editor is looking over my shoulder now; I must get back to the subject at hand. Well, this week, dear readers, you will be hearing all about how to make your home as summer-like as possible.
It used to be that whenever I heard the word 'summer', I inwardly (or most usually outwardly) groaned. Summer seemed like a time when the weather became unbearably hot, and when all the grandchildren came inside and made my sparkling house wet from the pool water. Want to see a picture? My youngest one just started … and my editor just made the rudest face at me, along with a not-so-polite cough. Anyway, here are a few tips for making your summer easier to bear.
Flowers! "But Aunt Edna, flowers are for springtime," you must be saying. And that is where my mounds of floral expertise come in. Many flowers do bloom during summertime, and one that you may have heard of blooms in early June, perfect for right about now. That's right -- roses bloom in June! And what smells better than a dozen lovely red roses in a beautiful little vase sitting on your dining room table for the world to see? And if you don't like roses, try daisies, dahlias, or even marigolds. Put them in a vase, hang them on your wall, or even put them in a book to save for winter, if you like. There are endless opportunities to make your house smell less like chlorine and more like pesticide!
If after hearing your kids', grandkids' or even friends' adventures of beaches, pools, and oceans, you might be wishing for a mini pool right inside your house. And you would be crazy because that would soak all your magnificent flowers. Instead, hang up little drink umbrellas, put fake sand and shells in vases that aren't filled with flowers, and you can even make the sound of waves crashing with a little magic from your wand. Pull out a beach mat, and you'll have a water-free, salt-free, animal-free beach, right in your very own living room.
Are you getting thirsty listening to the sound of waves crashing all day? Do you constantly need to go to the bathroom? Well, I have the solution to all your problems. Well, maybe not the second one. You could A) turn off the waves, but that would ruin your effect. And as they say, if plan A fails, there are 25 more letters left in the alphabet. I'm not going to use all 25, but I will suggest you use B) make yourself some tasty lemonade! I'm not going to tell you how because I don't want to infringe on From the Kitchen's territory. Just kidding, my editor is standing over my shoulder again. (Too much sugar is a bad thing!) But anyway, pull out some homemade (preferably pink) lemonade in beach-themed cups, and sit down on those mats! Drink away!
Well, I hope those tips change the way your summer goes (who am I kidding, of course, they did), but don't forget to make sure that everyone around you has some summer fun!
Easter is just around the corner, and what better way to celebrate it than eating chocolate? If you're bored of the usual eggs, why not try your hand at making your own chocolate frogs? As a child, you may have enjoyed many of these, without paying too much attention to how they were made. Well, the process is actually a lot more complicated than this recipe, but I can assure you that after extensive taste testing these are just as delicious!
Unlike those found at Honeydukes, these chocolate frogs will not run loose or hop away. These rich and creamy truffles are guaranteed to be just as fun and delicious as their wizardly inspirations (you could, of course, use a spell to animate them, but you didn't hear that from me).
There you have it: a delicious dessert for a warm summer's day. All that you need now is the perfect group of people to share it with! Why not invite some close friends over for a party, or take this cake along with you when you're visiting relatives? Unless, of course, you'd prefer to keep this tasty treat to yourself ... we can't say we blame you.
This month, I asked HEXians their thoughts on the recent events and changes made here on HEX, from the Gryffindor sitewide to the Caretaker events, and from promotions to site rules changes. HEXians seem to all have something they want to share:
"I liked the Gryffie sitewide, but I didn't have a lot to do because the events were mainly writing and graphics. I think I entered the lock/unlock event if there was one, but yeah, I wish the sitewides had something for people like me. DIY contests, like make an outfit on Polyvore and stuff? That would be fun!
Easter Egg hunt! Loved the variety of REs! And how often they fell, but it was impossible to find that dang bunny.
Promotions seemed fair!
New rules -- it's nice that they have defined the rules clearly. However, I wish they'd hear both sides before banning someone for bullying.
I'm super excited to know what the next event will be and hope it'll have REs so that I can make money!"
That Easter bunny seems to have been quite elusive as another HEXian shared a similar sentiment:
And aside from all the past events, it seems that there is something else that is coming which is getting everyone excited:
And there you have it. It does seem like the HEX Staff is getting ready to surprise everyone with something stellar. I'm sure we're all super excited to see what it is!