Communication is often an ability many take for granted. For me, it would be the greatest dream come true. But, I am stupid. Dumb. Useless. A runt.
Hagrid woke up with a grunt as a high pitched voice echoed throughout the mountains and pierced our ears. Fang whined. I pressed my hands against my ears and whimpered--a scared child.
“You have until midnight to bring me Harry Potter.”
“Harry!” His exclamation rang through the cave as Hagrid jumped to his feet, rushing around the enclosure and gathering his things. “Grawpy, let’s go.”
I smiled at my name. Hagrid didn’t think I was useless. He didn’t think I was a runt, though perhaps that was because I was nearly three times his size. But he cared for me. And I would do anything for him. In one swift, perhaps a little rough, movement I had him and Fang swept up onto my hand and was crashing toward the castle.
We could see the colored jets of spells whizzing around the grounds. It looked a lot like the light show Hagrid and I had watched from the caves ‘round Christmas. It was a bit scary, but rather stunning. I liked it.
But this show was a dangerous beauty. We could hear the screams even from so far away. We could hear the terror and the fighting. We could hear as the castle walls fell in upon themselves and crumbled to the ground. We could hear it all, but we couldn’t do anything yet. I began to run.
Down the hill, stepping over the trees, pushing everything out of my way, I ran. We had to get there. I heard Hagrid say something about putting him down at the castle. I had every intention of setting him down gently, but my hand didn’t listen as it crashed through a window and dropped him to the stone floor.
“Good boy, Grawpy,” Hagrid exclaimed through the window, a wide beam on his face, but I was no longer paying attention. I was looking down at all the little people below me. The dark men hidden beneath cloaks. The wizards and witches fighting them off. The children dueling among them.
I knew what I had to do. I wanted to reach down and curl those dark men up in my hand and throw them into the black depths of the lake. But you don’t know what it’s like living in a body that doesn’t listen to you. Instead, I thrashed around, the ground trembling as each of my feet hit the ground. Stupid, big, uncontrollable feet.
A little girl screamed as I came near and ran back toward the castle entrance as fast as she could, sending spells behind her at the dark man chasing her.
I was useless. A beast. A runt.
Behind me, I heard familiar roars. Deafening thunder booming across the violet sky, footsteps pounding into the ground, and the stench that seemed to follow my kind around wherever we went. Giants.
And it was then I knew what to do. Crashing over to another nearby, I kicked him as hard as I could behind the knee and he fell onto the grass. As he fell, I watched humans running for safety. A few of the dark men were crushed. I laughed.
Obnoxiously loud and sounding like a complete idiot, but it was hilarious all the same.
One advantage to being a runt: sore spots are easily found and hard to miss.
My mouth split into a gap-toothed grin as I flung my arms wildly around me, knocking elbows and knees, laughing as the idiots searched for their attacker but never thought to look down. Maybe I was a useless runt of a beast, but at least I wasn’t as useless as them.