Harry left Snape’s room quickly, it was Christmas and Harry had no intent of spending it there. He walked to his room and saw a small pile of presents at the end of his bed. Ron was already awake and looking at his presents with a look of longing on his face. When Harry entered he let out a sigh of relief.
“Finally! I’ve been waiting for you for AGES!” he cried Harry smiled slightly
“Let’s open them then” said Harry quietly
Harry had just picked up his first present- from Mrs Weasley- when Hermionie came in carrying her presents
“Hermionie!” exclaimed Ron
“Thought we could open presents together” she explained as she picked up her first present.
Harry smiled and started to open his presents:
He got a jumper from Mrs Weasley
An arrangement of sweets from Ron
A book on strange creatures from other lands from Hagrid
Sweets from Lupin
And an interesting book about Quiddich from Hermionie as well as sweets
Since he had finished opening his presents he looked at Ron and Hermionie to see what they had gotten. He realised that Hermionie was onto his present and was opening it curiously.
Harry had decided to give her the ring- it had taken him ages to come to the conclusion that he WAS in love with Hermionie. Just being around her made his heart beat faster, he was happy when she was there and saddened when she wasn’t- He hoped she felt the same way, he would die if she didn’t.
Hermionie opened the box and saw the ring. She gasped dramatically
“Oh Harry, where did you get this?” she asked shocked
“It…It was my mothers” he said quietly
Hermionie jerked her head up at that
“Oh Harry, I can’t take this” she said shaking her head slightly
“I want you to have it, I’m supposed to give it to the woman I love” he said waiting for a reaction- Hermionie nearly cried.
She jumped to her feet and kissed Harry so deeply he was shocked. He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her closer, then slowly he drew back.
“I love you Hermionie” he said simply
“I love you too” she whispered
Harry drew her in and kissed her again, She responded instantly. Harry then carefully prised her lips open and deepened the kiss. They pashed softly and the tingly sensation Harry had always felt went to new heights with this new kind of tongue contact. Harry wished that moment could last forever..
“Hem hem” Ron coughed imitating Umbridge . Harry and Hermionie drew apart, both were smiling.
“Where did you go yesterday Harry?” Ron asked changing the subject
Harry told them everything and at the end of the tale Hermionie was hugging him tightly.
“Oh Harry!” she whispered
“YOU’RE related to Godric Griffindor?” asked Ron shocked
“Yep, maybe that’s why I could pull the sword out of the sorting hat in second year...” He said thoughtfully
“Anything else you want to tell us Harry?” Hermionie asked kindly. Harry thought of the prophecy
“Yes, but I’m not ready to tell, and your not ready to hear it” he answered truthfully. Ron nodded
“I’m hungry” He said simply and Harry smiled
“Let’s get something to eat” He suggested and Ron nodded eagerly
Harry, Hermionie and Ron all walked down to the Great Hall together, Harry thinking that this was one of the best Christmas day ever.
After Christmas, the holidays passed too quickly for Harry liking. The holidays were some of the best Harry had ever had, now that he and Hermionie knew they loved each other it was like a whole knew world had exposed itself. Harry had never been in love before and he cherished the feeling deeply, it would be harder to spend time alone now that school had started.
Harry woke up grudgingly on the first day of school and got dressed slowly. He waited for Ron to get ready then they made their way down to the Great Hall together for breakfast.
Hermionie joined them before they had started to eat, and they ate together. When they had completed their meal Harry took out his timetable.
“What do we have?” asked Ron
“Potions and Care of Magical Creatures” he said sadly
“Great two lessons in a row with the Slytherins!” he said sarcastically and Harry nodded his agreement
They made their way down to the potions room together and waited outside the classroom. The door opened quickly and Harry sadly made his way inside for the first lesson of the term.
The lesson past slower than usual and Harry was glad when the bell rang.
Harry, Hermionie and Ron made their way down to Hagrid’s hut together.
When they arrived Harry saw that a few of the Slytherins where surrounding one of the walls of Hagrid’s hut. Harry gave a puzzled look at Ron, who shrugged. They approached the wall slowly and Harry realised they were throwing rocks.
“Hey stop that!” Harry called and Malfoy lifted his head
“Keep back Potter unless you want to get bitten” he said lazily and smiling evilly
Harry pushed a few of the Slytherins aside and realised what they were throwing rocks at. It was a snake.
The snake was scratched and bloody from the rocks, it was hissing slightly and Harry could tell it was in pain.
“Stop it! Leave it alone!” He yelled angrily
Everyone starred at Harry who rushed forward and bent down to the snake, which hissed defensively at him.
“Careful Harry it’s poisonous!” Said Hermionie warningly
Everyone was watching Harry as he carefully reached out to the snake, it hissed at him. Malfoy looked as if he was hoping the snake would bite him, the snake reared up slightly intending to strike Harry. Harry didn’t flinch.
“Don’t be afraid, I won’t hurt you” Harry said calmly to the snake it looked at Harry and relaxed slightly. Harry picked it up and it sat calmly in his hands
Harry looked and saw that everyone was gapping at him
“What? You all know I can talk to snakes” he said calmly
The crowd dispersed slowly as Hagrid had arrived.
“Sorry I’m late, Harry what’s that?” he asked Harry looking at the snake
“A poisonous snake” Said Malfoy quickly hoping to get Harry in trouble
“Really?” Hagrid asked keenly. Harry nodded
“It’s harmless, it wont bite anyone while I’m here” Harry said calmly
“Shouldn’t you let it go Harry?” asked Hagrid kindly
“It’s hurt” he said shooting a look at Malfoy. Hagrid nodded
The lesson started and Harry walked over to Hermionie and Ron. Hermionie has a strange look on her face.
“What?” he asked her concerned
“I’m…I’m scared of…of snakes” she stammered
“Really?” he asked surprised and she nodded
“It wont hurt you” he said, Hermionie looked doubtful
“You won’t hurt her will you?” he asked the snake
“No” the snake answered
“See? It won’t hurt you”
“I can’t understand it Harry” she said
“Look I’ll prove it” he said and he draped the snake around her shoulders, Hermionie froze
“Don’t you dare hurt her” he warned the snake
“I won’t” it answered
The snake lay there calmly and put its head around to Hermionie’s face
“Pat it” he told Hermionie, she very slowly rose her hand and stroked the snakes head. It hissed lazily
“See? Harmless” said Harry gently and Hermionie smiled slightly
“Yes I see, but can you take it back now?” she asked quietly
Harry extended his arm and the snake immediately curled around it
“This is Hermionie Granger” he said pointing at Hermionie “This is Ron Weasley”
“Hello” said the snake lazily
“He says ‘hi’” he told them, they looked blankly at Harry who turned back to the snake
“And I’m Harry, Harry Potter” he completed
“Oh, so your Harry Potter, I’ve heard of you” he said
“Have you really?” asked Harry surprised, the snake nodded
“I have some news for you and another wizard, one with a beard” he said calmly
“Dumbledore?” asked Harry, the snake nodded again “what about?” asked Harry curious
“The heir or Slytherin” said the snake
“Voldemort?” asked Harry and the snake nodded
“I have told you my name but I have yet to learn yours, what is it?” Harry asked
“I have no name” It answered
“Then I shall give you one” he told the snake.
“You have no idea how weird it is to see you talking to a snake!” Ron exclaimed
“It’s weirder talking to one, and to hear it talk back” said Harry calmly
“What did it say?” asked Hermionie curiously
“It has news about Voldemort for Dumbledore and me” he told them “and I have to find it a name, any suggestions?” he asked
“Snakes have names?” asked Ron blankly
“They should, and I shall name it” he said simply
“Look at it it’s covered in blood” said Hermionie sympathetically
“It’s very brave” he said fondly
“Then how about “Qualamah” for a name- it means courage” she suggested
“Qualamah” he said testing the name
“Unusual” commented Ron “how do you know what it means?”
“I know a few meanings for names, I know yours and Harry’s as well” she said
“What do they mean?” asked Harry curiously
“They both mean the same thing: Power” she said
“Wow, what a coincidence” said Ron surprised
“Some people say there are no coincidences” Harry said wisely
(A/N: both their names really do mean power- I looked it up, weird huh?)
“Well what do think of Qualamah?” asked Hermionie
“I’ll ask him” Harry said
“Snake?” he said to the snake
“Yes master?” replied the snake
“Master?” Harry asked
“Yes” responded the snake
“Just call me Harry. How do you like “Qualamah” for a name?”
“Qualamah?” The snake asked
“Yes, it means courage” he explained
“You think it suits me?” asked the snake
“Yes, I think it suits you well” said Harry honestly
“Then I would be honoured to be called that” the snake said
Harry tuned back to Hermionie and Ron
“He likes it” he said
“Good, now lets go a join the lesson” said Hermionie
They went down and Hagrid was talking about the Harpy he had next to him (a bird with the head of a woman) he was just explaining that harpies feed off truth.
“See, you tell harpies the truth if they catch you, lie and it’ll kill you there and then and feed off your body instead. They can eat meat, but it won’t nourish them as well….”
The lesson went on and Harry learned a great deal about Harpies. Through the lesson he would pet Qualamah, while trying hard not to hurt him.
At the end of the lesson Harry approached Hagrid
“Hagrid, could you care for Qualamah’s cuts during the break?” he asked kindly
“Qualamah?” Hagrid asked, Puzzled
“The snake” explained Harry
“Course I will” he said eagerly, Harry turned to Qualamah
“Qualamah?” he started
“Yes master?” Qualamah asked
“Just call me “Harry”, anyway I have to leave you with Hagrid, he’ll see to your cuts” he said
“I don’t trust him” said Qualamah
“Why?” asked Harry
“He’s half giant” he said simply
“How do you know that?” asked Harry shocked
“I can smell it” he explained
“Well he’s harmless” Harry said honestly
“I believe you, but you must tend my cuts” Qualamah said
“Why?’ asked harry
“Because I’m bound to you” said the snake simply
“But why?” asked Harry curious
“Because you saved my life, those children would have killed me” he explained
“Forget it” said Harry slightly embarrassed
“Snakes don’t forget” said Qualamah
“I’m not good at healing” said Harry warningly
“I shall instruct you” said Qualamah
“Never mind Hagrid, it won’t leave me” Harry explained
“Why not?” asked Hagrid sounding slightly disappointed
“Because i saved it's life” Harry said warily
“That’s two lives in your debt now Harry” said Hagrid thoughtfully
“Who’s the other?” Harry asked
“Peter Pettigrew” said Hagrid
“Oh yeah…” he said thoughtfully
Harry was late for Charms, he bid goodbye to Hagrid and made his way up to the Charms. Qualamah had to stay hidden, so no one would panic. He spent lunch tending to Qualamah’s wounds meaning Harry had nothing to eat. Towards dinnertime Harry was getting hungry and Qualamah was getting board of hiding.
“Master?” he asked
“It’s Harry Qualamah” said Harry getting slightly annoyed
“Why must I stay hidden, are you shamed to be seen with me?” he asked slowly
“Of course not, it’s just that lots of people don’t like snakes” Harry explained
“Why not” asked Qualamah puzzled
“Because some snakes bite” said Harry
“Only if threatened” said Qualamah defectively
“When will you tell me the message about Voldemort?” asked Harry
“Soon, I must tell you and the bearded man together. Will you hide me forever?” Qualamah asked
“Forever? What do you mean?” Harry asked confused
“I’m bound to you till I die, master” Qualamah explained
“Will you stop calling me “master” for heavens sake!” said Harry, annoyed
“Let me ride on your shoulder please” Qualamah begged
“Only if you call me Harry” said Harry stubbornly
“Very well” agreed Qualamah
Harry was only letting Qualamah out because already he thought some people might have heard him hissing to Qualamah, and it was only a mater of time before he was caught. So Harry took Qualamah out of his pocket and placed him on his shoulder.
“Happy?” asked Harry forcefully
“Yes this is much better, thank you Harry Potter” he said gratefully
“No one will be happy about this” he said more to himself than the snake
He walked cautiously into the great hall. People saw the snake and it was chaos.
People were screaming and pointing, most boys were goggling and looking jealously at Harry and a few people got up and ran out of the hall. The noise was agitating Qualamah and he thought that the people were threatening Harry. He reared slightly and hissed loudly, making more people scream.
“Be still Qualamah!” Said Harry urgently and Qualamah quietened
Dumbledore shot sparks into the air and people stoped screaming and running. He looked seriously at Harry.
“Harry, come with me into my office” he said calmly and Harry gulped
Harry followed Dumbledore out of the hall with Hermionie and Ron looking after him. Harry saw that Snape was coming and Harry’s heart sunk, nothing good could happen while he was there.
They entered his office and Dumbledore indicated that Harry should sit down, Harry sat quietly.
“What were you doing bringing a poisonous snake into the Great Hall?!” Snape yelled
“Severus” Dumbledore said warningly
Qualamah hissed at Snape viciously
“Do you want me to bite him?” he asked Harry who could not help smiling slightly
“Yes, but you better not” he said quietly
“What did you say Potter?!” Snape demanded
“He asked me if I wanted him to bite you I said yes, but that he better not” Harry said honestly
“Harry?” asked Dumbledore and Harry looked at him “Why did you take him in the hall?”
“He was sick of hiding, he has some news- that’s all he said” answered Harry
“What news?” asked Dumbledore
“About Voldemort’ said Harry, he looked to the snake
“This is the bearded man, can you tell me now?” asked Harry
“He is the bearded man?” asked Qualamah
“Yes” said Harry
“I’ve heard he is the greatest wizard there is, is that true?” he asked curiously
“Yes” said Harry
Qualamah slid down from Harry’s arm and did an unmistakable bow to him
“It’s a honour to meat you” he said
“He can’t understand you” said Harry
“Then you must pass that on” Qualamah said
Harry looked up at Dumbledore who was looking surprisingly at the snake who had bowed to him.
“Whatever have you told him Harry?” He asked
“That you are the greatest wizard of all time” Harry answered
“The message Potter!” said Snape growing impatient
“Ok I’ll ask, by the way Professor Qualamah said it’s an honour to meat you” he said to Dumbledore
“’Qualamah”, courage. You may tell him the honour is mine” replied Dumbledore. Harry turned back to the Snake.
“He says the honour is his, now what’s the message?” Harry asked
”Not with him here” he said looking at Snape
“Why not” Harry asked
“He’s evil” Said the snake
“Yes he is, but apparently he’s trustworthy” Harry said
“He’s a death eater, I can smell it” Qualamah said
“Apparently he’s switched sides” Harry said doubtfully
“I’ll say nothing in front of him, he smells bad” said Qualamah stubbornly
Harry looked up at Dumbledore
“He says he won’t say anything with Snape here. He says he smells evil and he can tell he was a death eater, he says that he also smells bad” Harry said and Snape sneered
“Tell Qualamah that Snape has my trust, and that he can be trusted” Dumbledore said and Harry translated the message and then translated Qualamah’s answer.
“He thinks your trust is wrongly placed, but if I agree he shall tell him. I agreed” Harry said
“Good, now the message” Dumbledore said and Harry turned to Qualamah
“The message?” he asked
“There is a ring, that has infinite powers. It can only be worn by one sole person- I do not know who it is. This person only can harbour the powers of the ring and only this person can pass it on to another. Voldemort’s plan is to track down this person and posses him or her.” Qualamah said and Harry translated the message.
“Why doesn’t Voldemort just take the ring?” Asked Snape and Harry asked Qualamah
“The ring must be freely given and even if it was it would be useless to Voldemort. The person who currently owns the ring has the great power, the ring just helps channel it and also adds to its velocity” explained Quallamah
“What about the person they pass it onto?” asked Dumbledore when Harry had translated the message
“The person they give the ring to is the person they love, if they do not truly love the person or visa versa that person would find it impossible to put on the ring” answered Quallamah, when Harry asked. Harry translated the message again getting slightly annoyed having to interpret the whole conversation.
“He has no idea who the person is?” asked Snape and Harry asked
“Only an idea” replied Quallamah
“He has an idea, but he’s not certain” translated Harry
“An idea is enough, if we knew it would give us a definite advantage” said Dumbledore and Harry turned back to Qualamah
“Who do you think it is?” asked Harry slightly curious
“You” he replied simply
“What? Me? You must be mistaken!” he exclaimed
“It’s a theory only” said Qualamah
“Can you prove it?” asked Harry
“Yes” He replied
“How?” Harry asked him
“Potter! What did he say who is it?” Snape interrupted
“Doesn’t matter I’m quite sure he’s wrong” said Harry calmly
“Harry, you must tell us despite your opinion” said Dumbledore kindly
“He thinks its me” said Harry quietly
No one spoke for several seconds then:
“You? You have the great power?” said Snape disbelievingly
“So Qualamah thinks, he says it can be proven” Said Harry quickly
“How?” Snape inquired
“I asked but you so kindly interrupted me before he could answer” Harry said coolly and Sanpe sneered
“Ask him now Harry” said Dumbledore before Snape could reply
“How can we tell who it is?” Harry asked Qualamah
“I will tell you the words and you shall write them” answered Qualamah
“Words?” asked Harry surprised he was expecting some sort of spell
“It is a riddle that none but the powerful one can read” explained Qualamah
Harry rummaged through his bag and pulled out a piece of parchment and a quill.
“What on earth are you doing?” demanded Snape
“Its in the form of a riddle that only ‘the powerful one’ can read” explained Harry.
Harry wrote the words Qualamah told him and when he had finished there was a piece of writing that made no sense it read:
dan otin edaht uyo lalf drak
ahtt asyw etfl seil ayw wot lal
yuo teh hniingns ot tlgih og
rome okwn glhit hte htna ouy ohwss od
sebnat hte lhitg spsa og tremas onit hte
esne cn’at lla lwka nirgiong ttah eb
vneer-egdinn a oomr ehada: a bclok,
ebdony, alwk okol hte utroghh kocr
sirat nroagd hpapaocr no teh eht
hte cwhhi nhda ned ojrnyeus orev atht crae ofr oyu
ecma upt ti wneech cakb ti mfor
rwpeo lwli eb eams enerv hte hte.
“You sure you copied it right potter?” Snape asked. Harry nodded
“Yes I’m sure” he replied
“Albus can you read it?” Snape asked
Dumbledore picked up the parchment and looked at it for several seconds
“No, I think I might see what a word is but then it’s like something blocks me from seeing it. It makes no sense to me” he answered then he handed the sheet to Harry “Can you understand it?”
Harry looked at the sheet and tried to read it. It didn’t make any sense! It was just a random selection of letters! He concentrated harder trying to find some meaning in them. He could find none.
“Your trying to hard Harry, relax your mind” Qualamah said and Harry did
Suddenly he could read it. It was like the meaning just lunged up at him as though it had been there the whole time.
“Yes, I can read it” he said quietly
Snape stared at him Dumbledore’s expression was hard to interpret- he just looked at Harry thoughtfully.
“What does it say?” he asked him
Into dark and death you fall
Two ways left that way lies all
To the shinning light you go
The light shows more than you do know
Go pass the light into the absent stream
Walk ignoring all that can’t be seen
Ahead a never-ending room: a block,
Look beyond, walk through the rock
Approach the dragon on the stair
The journeys end hand over that for which you care
Put it back from whence it came
The power will never be the same.”
Harry read these words clearly and wondered what they meant. He looked at Dumbledore.
“How did you get that?” Asked Snape taking the parchment and studying it
“The letters are mixed up: ‘dan’, the first word is really ‘and’. The words on each line are also scrambled” Harry explained
“What is it a riddle to, I wonder?” asked Dumbledore
“I’ll ask Qualamah, maybe he knows” Harry said before turning to the snake
“I can read it” Harry told him
“I know” he replied
“What does it mean?” Harry asked him
“It’s directions” Qualamah said
“To what?” Harry asked curiously
“The Green Jewelled Staff” he replied
“The what?” Harry asked puzzled
“The Green Jewelled Staff” Qualamah repeated, thinking Harry misheard him
“No, I mean what is it?” Harry explained
“I don’t know” Qualamah replied
Harry turned to Dumbledore
“What’s the Green Jewelled Staff?” Harry asked him
“Why do you wish to know” Dumbledore questioned
“That’s what the riddle is. It’s directions to it” Harry explained
“The Green jewelled Staff is the staff Godric Griffindor himself owned. He cut a piece the jewel off it before he died” Dumbledore answered
“What did he do with it?” Harry asked
“Gave it to the woman he married” he replied
“Where is it today?” Harry asked
“On your mothers ring” he answered
“But that means Voldemort’s after me!” Harry said urgently
“What else is new?” asked Snape sounding board
“But I don’t have it! If he doesn’t know who the bearer is he’ll take the person who currently has it!” Harry exclaimed getting to his feet
Dumbledore also got to his feet
“What?” asked Snape not following what was happening
“Hermionie! She has the ring! She’s in danger! Voldemort will think SHE’S the ring bearer, she’s female and more likely than I am to own a ring, we have to find her!”
They hurried out of Dumbledore’s office and headed down to the great hall Harry sprinted ahead and made his way to Ron holding Qualamah tightly around his neck as he ran.
“Ron!” he called and Ron turned
“What?” he asked
“Where’s Hermionie?” he asked urgently
“She went to bed, but-” Ron said and before he could ask what was wrong Harry ran in the other direction
“She’s in Griffindor tower!” He told Dumbledore when he reached him, Dumbledore nodded and started to hurry up to Griffindor tower with Harry and Snape on his heals.
The reached Griffindor tower and approached the stairs to the girl’s dormitory. Dumbledore waved his wand and walked up the stairs- obviously that spell had been used to keep the stairs turning into a slide. They ran up the stairs and when they approached the door that had ‘Sixth Years’ written on it. Harry knocked loudly. When no answer came he opened the door and approached Hermionie’s bed.
There lying on her bed was his mothers ring. Harry knew that Hermionie would not willingly taken it off and realised they were too late. Hermionie was gone.
A/N: I made up that riddle, not bad huh? Oh your probably wondering why Voldemort would leave the ring and take Hermionie, and how he took he since you can’t dissaperate on Hogwarts grounds- you find out next chapter, I will explain it! I’ll write the next one soon, in the meantime write and tell me what you think of this one! Suggestions welcome! - Nat
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