"It was brilliant!"
-- Dennis Creevey on falling into the Lake (GF12)
The First Years cross the Lake in boats, this year in a pouring rainstorm. Dennis falls out of one of the boats. He was lifted out of the water by something or someone (probably the giant squid, according to his brother, Colin) and enters the Great Hall wearing Hagrid’s moleskin overcoat. The Muggle-born is thrilled with his experience.
- In their excitement, the Creevey brothers may or may not have embellished the truth regarding Dennis' journey across the Lake. All the First Years are equally drenched due to the heavy rain, and Hagrid may have given his coat to Dennis because he was "the smallest of the lot". Although Dennis believed it was something in the water that returned him to the boat, it may very well have been Hagrid who scooped him out of the water. -BB
- Colin assumed that his brother's aquatic savior must have been the giant squid, but, as Harry learns later that school year, there are also merpeople in the Lake. The squid is known to have friendly interactions with Hogwarts students, so it is entirely plausible that it would save Dennis, but Rowling's love of foreshadowing and dropping hints is worth taking into consideration. -BB
- The younger Creevey brother being rescued from the Lake foreshadowed the second task of the Triwizard Tournament, especially since Fleur had to rescue her younger sister, Gabrielle. -BB
- Alchemical principles factor heavily into Harry's story. The middle of the three phases of alchemy is the albedo phase, which is about purification and, thus, water (source: www.harrypotterforseekers.com). Someone getting dunked in the Lake while new Hogwarts term is issued in with a massive downpour in the central book of the series corresponds to the alchemical process. -BB