One week later, my temper hadn’t gotten any better. I had been in around fifteen fights, even Hannah was wary of me now. But she hung around me still, just to be close to Harry. Harry still hadn’t asked me out, or kissed me or anything… But I’m hoping he would soon. I was with him, Ron and Hermione almost all the time. Ron was getting better at Quiditch, so was I. Even Harry seemed to be improving with all the extra practice we were getting training Ron to be a better keeper! I was still a chaser, and our next Quiditch match against Slytherin was soon. But most of the chasers wouldn’t dare pick on me. Actually, they seemed scared of me…
I walked down the dormitory stares, to find Harry at the bottom.
“Good Morning Ginny” Harry said as soon as he noticed me.
“Morning Harry” I said, stretching my arms above my head. I pulled on my dressing gown on properly, and went over to hug him. The hug was long, but stopped as soon as Daisy walked into the room. I hadn’t been alone with her yet, so I hadn’t been able to duel her as I hoped I would have. I had told Harry about her threat, and about my plan… He didn’t think that I should bother, but it didn’t stop me trying to ‘talk’ to Daisy alone.
“Where’s Ron” I asked. I hated being around Harry with Ron about… It was so awkward with his grossed out noises and, he has been very flirty with Hermione, which made me feel ill myself. They weren’t a good couple; they were barley compatible as friends. I still didn’t really like Hermione, I actually don’t know why; she seems to never be nasty to me in anyway. But she still irritated me, just how she talks to Ron, it’s sickening sometimes.
“No. He didn’t feel very well; I think he has a cold!”
“Did he go to Madame Pomfrey?”
“No. He didn’t want to get up.”
“Lazy Ron” I said with a small smile on my face. He lightly chuckled.
“Lessons today… Finally” Harry said.
“Yeah. It was weird that we had a whole week to get used to the school. Pretty cool.”
“Yep. It’s been a good week!” Harry said. He was silent for a long time. He never looked at me in the eyes for a whole three minutes.
“Yes” He answered.
“Are you alright? You seem a little down.”
“I’m fine.” I looked at his eyes, looking to see if he was lying to me.
“Honestly. I’m fine Ginny” Harry said, looking me straight in the eyes.
“Okay. I believe you.” I said with a grin on my face.
Louise and I bustled into Defense Against The Dark Arts. Along with the rest of the class. All the girls were anxious to see Professor Peaks again, all of them in love with him straight away. We sat at the desks, looking at the front, in anticipation to meet the new teacher. He didn’t enter for a long time, we started to get impatient, then we saw him. He strolled down the familiar staircase that I had seen Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers walk down again, and again. I remembered my first class with Loupin, Lockheart and the Moody imposter. But this was different. Loupin had already been standing at the front, Lockheart had glided down the steps, Moody had stormed in from the back off the class room, to the front, before throwing a black board rubber at Thomas Gibbs, a boy in my class. But Professor Peaks walked quickly down the stairs, with a certain grace as he moved. The girls all ‘oohed and aared’, except for me. I didn’t find him THAT attractive. I didn’t see the great attraction. He wasn’t that amazing. I turned to look at Louise, but she, like all the other girls, had a beaming smile on her face, aimed straight at Professor Peaks.
He stopped halfway down the steps, and smiled really widely. He gazed around the class, lifted his hands off the stone banister, and said:
“Well. Hello Class”
“Hello” Everyone answered back. I looked around at the faces off my classmates. How did that all do that at the same time, when it didn’t even dawn on me to?
“Looking forward to Defense Against The Dark Arts I see.” He smiled again, and carried on. “We will be doing some advanced things this year, which I am sure you will all enjoy.” Everyone’s smile got bigger when he said this. He took out his wand, twirled it around, and books flew from behind him, and landed perfectly on our desks. With another flick of his wand, the books all opened onto page 117.
“Dementors? Why are we learning about them? We were learning about Firepixies, Tinklepunks and Doormonsters last year. This is a LOT more advanced Sir.” Rosie Crenchore’s voice called out from the back of the class.
“Yes. Yes it is a lot more advanced. But I think you are all capable of it. Don’t you?” Rosie blushed behind me, and looked at the table, since Professor Peaks was looking right at her as he made this comment.
“Alright. Who would like to read the first paragraph?” He asked, scanning the classroom for willing volunteers.
“Me Sir. Me, me, me” called a babble of excited girls voices.
“Okay… Umm.. YOU” He called, pointing straight at Betty Fetter.
She put on a pair of glasses and began to read the text: “Dementors are among the foulest creatures that walk this earth. They infest the darkest, filthiest places, they glory in decay and despair, and they drain peace, hope, and happiness out of the air around them. Even Muggles feel their presence, though they can't see them. Get too near a Dementor and every good feeling, every happy memory will be sucked out of you. If it can, the Dementor will feed on you long enough to reduce you to something like itself...soul-less and evil. You will be left with nothing but the worst experiences of your life…. Written By Remus Loupin. Professor Loupin was that?” Everyone had very confused expressions on their faces.
“That’s right. Your old Professor wrote that snippet, and the next paragraph that we will read.”
“Wow. Impressive” Betty said, before blushing again.
“Anyone want to read the next paragraph?” he asked. More class members put their hands up this time. “YOU” He said over the babble of noise from the pupils, this time Tia began reading.
“They feed on positive human emotions; a large crowd is like a feast to them. They drain a wizard of his powers if left with them too long. They are the guards at Azkaban and make that place horrible indeed. There are certain defenses one can use against Dementors, specifically the Patronus Charm. A Dementor's breath sounds rattling and like it's trying to suck more than air out of a room. Its hands are glistening, grayish, slimy-looking, and scabbed”
“Yes. Yes. The Patronus Charm. Has anyone ever heard of that spell before?”
“I have” I called out. People stared at me, before agreeing with me.
“Can anyone cast the spell?” Everyone shook their heads.
“No. It is very advanced. I only know of one child who can perform this very charm at this school. Harry Potter. I know you all know about him.” His voice broke on the words ‘child’, and ‘Harry Potter’, which made me a little uneasy. All the pupils nodded in agreement about knowing Harry.
“Well, I am going to teach you the Patronus Charm!”
“Why? Dementors aren’t supposed to attack mere students, or anyone who isn’t a criminal.” Thomas Gibbs said.
“You can never be too sure, Mr. Gibbs, is it?”
“Yes Sir” Thomas said, blushing crimson.
“Right. Class, first. I know it is very dull, but I would like it if you could take your quill and ink out, and copy in the paragraph in the text book. Thank you” We obediently copied the text out in silence. The only noise was the gentle sound of quill tips scratching against parchment.
“Everybody finished?” Professor Peaks asked us. In answer we put down out quills.
“Right. Come to the front, all of you” We walked to the front of the classroom to stand by his side. He flicked his wand again, and the tables swooped around the room and stacked themselves neatly around the sides of the room.
“Does anybody know the words you say when you are casting the Protronus Charm” I nervously put my hand up.
“Yes. Weasly is it?”
“Yes Sir. Ginny”
“Go on then Ginny” He said with a blinding smile on his face.
“Is it Expecto Patronum?”
“Very good Ginny. Very good. Ten points to Gryffindor.” I felt pats on my back from fellow Gryffindors. Professor Peaks pointed his wand straight ahead of him, waved it above his head, and swished it down, and said sternly “Expecto Patronum” A white light shot out of the tip of his wand, in mid air it turned into an eagle, which swooped around the room, before disappearing.
“WOW” the class said. There was rounds of applause from the class. Professor Peaks bowed, chuckling next to me.
“That is what you will all be able to do soon!” He smiled shockingly. “Honestly. I will teach you, so you can ALL do that! But of course, you will proberly have different animals.”
“What will we have sir?” Rosie Crenchore called out.
“I don’t know. There is no way of knowing what animal it will be. Apart from seeing it when you cast the spell” We all nodded in understanding.
“Right. Move into a space, make sure your not close to anyone” We did as told.
“Now. We need to practice the arm movement. You need to swirl the wand around your head like so, then point it and say ‘Expecto Patronum.’. Like so.” He demonstrated again. We copied… With failed attempts.
“I’m glad Hermione Granger isn’t in our year. She would show us all up wouldn’t she” Betty muttered to Rosie. After about half an hour of casting the spell, with no proper outcomes, the bell rang around the castle.
“That’s all for today class. You are dismissed” There was a huge noise as everyone grabbed their bags and ran out of the classroom. I decided to wait till everyone had gone, before I tried to leave.
“Ginny?” Someone called behind me. I turned to see Professor Peaks standing right behind me.
“Yes Sir” I said with a puzzled expression on my face.
“Your friends with Harry Potter, correct?”
“Yes Sir” I said again.
“Well, could you please ask him to come up and talk to me soon.
“Are you not teaching him today?”
“No. Not till next week.”
“Oh. Yes. Is there any specific reason why you want to speak to Harry?”
“No. I just want to meet him, he is fascinating to me.” His voice was almost bitter as he said that.
“ Okay Sir. I will try. Do you want to speak to him here?”
“Yes, in my office. Just up those stairs” He gestured to the door he had come out of at the beginning of the lesson.”
“Did you enjoy the lesson Ginny?”
“Yes. It was fun. But I am hopeless at the spell.”
“No your not. You’re the most advanced in the class. I bet next lesson you will have it nailed. I could give you private tuition if you want.”
“That’s okay thank you Sir. I will see you, Friday, that’s our next lesson I think.”
“Right.” He beamed his
I turned, put my bag on my shoulder, and walked out the classroom. I could feel his eyes on my neck, making my hairs stand on end.
We had Herboligy, followed by Divination, then Transfiguration, and finally Charms. As we left Charms, Harry caught up with me, Ron and Hermione trailing behind him.
“How are you Ginny” Hermione asked politely.
“I’m okay thanks. You?”
“Okay. Potions was a pain though.”
“You didn’t get hit with a book though Hermione” Ron said, rubbing the back of his head.
“Suppose that’s an upside. I didn’t have it as bad as you” She said. Ron and Hermione chuckled.
“Shall we go somewhere else? It’s a little crowded in here” Harry whispered in my ear.
“Okay.” I followed him to the Owlery, where Hedwig was waiting in anticipation, with a letter tied to her claw. Hermione and Ron followed shortly after, sighing loudly.
“Hedwig, hello” Harry said, walking straight over to her, and stroking her snow white feathers. She lifted her foot, and offered Harry the parchment. “Thank you.” Harry took the parchment, carefully unfolded it, whilst saying. “Hedwig why didn’t you bring it at breakfast, then he sighed as he read it slowly.
“Whose it from?” Ron asked.
“What does it say?” I asked.
“Hello Harry. Sorry I asked Hedwig to bring you this privately, and not as breakfast mail, since people still think I’m a criminal. I wanted to ask how Hogwarts is going. Hope your well. Sirius.”
“That’s sweet” Hermione said.
“There’s more.” Said Harry, before chuckling quietly. “p.s. I might strangle Creature soon. He is so moaning and dull, He better watch his back.” Ron laughed, Hermione giggled.
“Shall we go to dinner?” Hermione asked. Her stomach rumbled quietly, she giggled again. “I’m hungry”
“You don’t say” Ron joked as her stomach rumbled again.
“Okay. Lets go” Harry held my hand as we walked to the great hall.