>> Saturday, January 7, 2012
"Hermione's right, you just need a good defense. You can call us as witnesses-"
"I'm sure I've read about a case of hipogriff-baiting," said Hermione thoughtfully, "where the hipogriff got off. I'll look it up for you, Hagrid, and see exactly what happened."
Hagrid howled still the more loudly. Harry and Hermione looked at Ron to help them.
"Er--shall I make a cup of tea?" said Ron.
Harry stared at him.
"It's what my mum does whenever someone's upset," Ron muttered, shrugging.
"Gryffindor leads by eighty points to zero, and look at that Firebolt go! Potter's really putting it through its paces now, see it turn--Chang's Comet is just no match for it, the Firebolt's precision-balance is really noticeable in these long-"
"JORDAN! ARE YOU BEING PAID TO ADVERTISE FIREBOLTS? GET ON WITH THE COMMENTARY!"
"Have you ever seen anything quite as pathetic?" said Malfoy. "And he's supposed to be our teacher!"
Harry and Ron both made furious moves toward Malfoy, but Hermione got there first--SMACK! She had slapped Malfoy across the face with all the strength she could muster. Malfoy staggered. Harry, Ron, Crabbe, and Goyle stood flabbergasted as Hermione raised her hand again.
"Don't you dare call Hagrid pathetic, you foul--you evil-"
"Hermione," said Ron weakly, as he tried to grab her hand as she swung it back.
"Get off, Ron!"
Black started to laugh, a horrible, mirthless laugh that filled the whole room. "Voldemort, teach me tricks?" he said. Pettigrew flinched as though Black had brandished a whip at him. "What, scared to hear your old master's name?" said Black. "I don't blame you, Peter. His lot aren't very happy with you, are they?"
"No!" Pettigrew had fallen to his knees as though Harry's nod had been his own death sentence. He shuffled forward on his knees, groveling, his hands clasped in front of him as though praying. "Sirius--it's me...it's Peter...your friend...you wouldn't..."
Black kicked out and Pettigrew recoiled. "There's enough filth on my robes without you touching them," said Black.
"If we manage that without being seen, it'll be a miracle!"
"Well, we've got to try, haven't we?" said Harry.
"It didn't make any difference," said Harry bitterly. "Pettigrew got away."
"Didn't make any difference?" said Dumbledore quietly. "It made all the difference in the world, Harry. You helped uncover the truth. You saved an innocent man from a terrible fate."
"You know, Harry, in a way, you did see your father last night...You found him inside yourself."
"He was my mum and dad's best friend. He's a convicted murderer, but he's broken out of wizard prison and he's on the run. He likes to keep in touch with me, though...keep up with my news...check if I'm happy..."