Chapter 13 : Chapter 12: He's Here, In The Castle!
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Chapter 12: He’s Here, In The Castle!
The days that followed the Buckbeak lesson were far less eventful. We grew used to Trelawney’s bizarre predictions and Hagrid’s dangerous and demented lessons; we even began to enjoy ourselves during those class periods.
Not Hermione, though.
She despised Divination. It was the one class where the teacher thought she was completely witless (or, in this case, lacked ‘The Inner Eye’), and she soon quit the class completely.
The one class that no one could formulate a bad opinion on, however, was Professor Lupin’s class. Our first lesson was on Boggarts, and Neville was picked to demonstrate.
“What are you most afraid of?” Lupin asked him gently.
Neville stammered out his fear, blushing. I chuckled and felt myself smile a bit.
Lupin laughed as well. After talking with Neville for a minute, he leaned down and whispered instructions for him. He told him the incantation for the spell and let the Boggart out.
Neville had his wand at the ready, squirming slightly. Lupin flicked his wand at the cupboard and the door swung open. Professor Snape came out and approached Neville quickly.
The Boggart-Snape spun a few times, then appeared dressed in Neville’s grandmother’s attire. The whole class, including us, all began cracking up. Lupin looked like he was close to tears.
Lupin praised him and reminded us to turn the Boggart into something we found amusing. We all formed a line and took turns.
This continued for fifteen minutes. I enjoyed watching Ron face a spider, and in response he caused the spider to be adorned in roller skates. Hermione witnessed McGonagall giving her a T on an assignment. Harry faced a Dementor that Lupin ended up deflecting. Lupin reluctantly continued the lesson, due to the insistence of the other students.
I waited to be last. Truth be told, I didn’t want to face the Boggart. I knew exactly who would come out of that closet.
When it was my turn, I saw everyone become nervous. No one had seen Jane before, but they all knew that I was destined to face a sadistic woman who was planning something a thousand times worse than Tom Riddle had.
My school shirt suddenly felt tight, and I was glad I wasn’t wearing a cloak, because my body was overheated all of a sudden. My wand was out, but I felt like it would be no use. My palms became sweaty, causing my grip on my wand to slip. I bit my lip, blinked several times, then took a step forward.
The clown from the last student suddenly looked at me, and it quickly transformed to a small feminine figure in a cloak. I couldn’t see her face, but her pale white hands were visible folded in front of her. She slowly raised her hands and pulled back her hood.
Her eyes were a deep crimson, her hair was golden, and her face would’ve been beautiful if it weren’t for the darkness that lurked in her expression.
She smiled sweetly, and I saw Lupin start forward, but freeze with uncertainty of how to react.
“Ginevra. Molly. Weasley,” she murmured in a sweet, light voice. It was so innocent and kind that it was hard to believe she wanted me dead, until you looked into her eyes. “Face to face. At last.”
“Not really,” I muttered, clenching my wand tighter, but I felt unable to move.
“Who’s going to die for you today? We both already know who’s on the list. I’m in your head, remember?”
In my head, I thought, reaching out to Jeb. What does she mean?
“What about Riley?”
I felt like I should know that name like the back of my head, but I couldn’t figure out who she was talking about.
“You know who he is. Just think.”
I swallowed and pointed my wand at her. She smiled and shook her head at me, as if it were a foolish move.
I opened my mouth to say the spell.
Jane sped over to me and slammed me onto the ground. I planted both my feet into her chest and kicked her across the room, but this did not repel her by any means.
She let out an innocent, tinkling laugh. “Why resist? You know that in the end, both you and Potter will die. Of course, since you are my priority, I will kill him first, so you can witness it.” As the words left her mouth, she said them lightly, as if she were having a pleasant conversation. There was no hostility present in her voice. “By then, you’ll be begging for death.”
A crushing blow was sent to my collarbone, causing me to land flat on my back, knocking the breath out of me.
“Now, I have figured out what your weaknesses are. Yes, we’ve searched to find your and Potter’s weaknesses. We’ve had no luck finding the third, so we had to settle for only you two.” She smiled. “More fun for Tom and I.”
“You know nothing,” I spat, which was both a truth and a lie.
“Oh, but Ginny, I do,” she insisted. She sounded like an insistent child and that fact scared me. She came over to me and grabbed the front of my shirt, yanking me upwards.
“Your weak points are each other.”
She smiled innocently. “I’m more powerful than you think.”
Her icy hand moved to my throat and began to squeeze slightly. It became harder and harder to breathe. “So many people ready to die for you. How many are you going to let take the fall before you finally step up? What about Renesmee? Edward? Bella? Max? Angel? Alice? Kyra? Ron? Hermione? Riley? Alec? Harry?”
She became nothing amusing at all. She crumpled to dust, causing me to fall to the ground, gasping for air. I felt sick and weak. Professor Lupin rushed over to me. He pointed his wand at the dust and caused it to vanish, then tried to help me up.
“Ginny, are you all right? We need to get you to the Hospital Wing, now!”
“No,” I muttered. “That won’t help. I need Erik.”
Lupin had no time to ask who Erik was. As soon as I had called for him, Erik came to my side through one of his hidden passages in the castle (he had created and uncovered many more upon his arrival at the school). He kneeled by me and helped me into a chair while Lupin shushed the class and told them everything was going to be fine.
Erik took a potion out of his cloak and handed it to me. “You’re going to be all right. This will help with the shock of it all.”
I drank the potion quickly, then asked, “Why was the Boggart like that? It was so real…it knew so much…it knew things I knew…”
Erik sighed. “Your mind is so complex, Ginny. A Boggart senses your thoughts; that’s how it knows your fears. A boggart that you face will absorb so much information that it’s almost the real thing. Your boggart wouldn’t turn into something amusing because it was already beyond being fooled. But, your anger was so fierce, it ended up destroying the Boggart altogether.”
I raised my eyebrows. “That can happen?”
“In your case, absolutely. You have more power than you realize.”
I felt my wrist start to get warm, and, fearing another vision, I asked Erik quickly, “Do you know who Riley is?”
Erik’s brow furrowed in concentration. He shook his head. “Doesn’t sound familiar. Why do you ask?”
I sighed. “No reason.”
For the next week, all anyone talked about was my encounter with the Boggart. People feared that I was a danger to the school. I ignored any jeers or scared looks and just focused on schoolwork and training. I even avoided Hermione, my brothers, and Harry. This did nothing but anger them all, especially Harry.
One evening, I jogged down the staircase to Erik’s, only to find him asleep at the table, papers and books surrounding him. Without disturbing him, I looked through the papers and books to see that they were records, records of the Cullens, the Potter family, and the Jameson family. As I leaned in to take a closer look, Erik rose.
“I’m sorry, I’ve been up for three days straight and must have fallen asleep.” He saw me looking at the records. “I was looking up the Cullens’ records to make sure that no old files of Carlisle and the other still existed in the Muggle world, raising suspicion. For the Potters, I was merely curious about their lineage. And the Jamesons…well, I found out that Kyra’s mother was not Charles’ wife.”
I nodded. “We knew that for a while, even though nothing was ever said. Don’t get me wrong, Mrs. Jameson loved Kyra, and Kyra loved her, it’s just…”
“There’s a bond in all of us that tells us these things,” Erik finished.
Erik pinched the bridge of his nose and shook his head, shutting his eyes tight. He walked over to a cupboard, pulled out a vial of that same dark liquid I saw him drinking before and drank it.
“What is that for?” I asked.
“Oh, it’s for some pains I’ve been getting lately. Just some old injuries,” Erik told me quickly. Something told me that it wasn’t true, but I left it alone.
Erik then invited me to help him go through the Cullens’ records and make sure they were all erased in the Muggle world, put away the Potter records, and try to figure out who Kyra’s mother was. After several hours had passed, Erik suggested we call it a day and go up to the Great Hall to have dinner.
When we walked in, Dumbledore signaled for silence in the Great Hall. He looked at Erik and I gravely and said, “Aro wants to visit us.”
“What?” I shouted. “Why?”
“I believe Jane has arranged it. The whole Wizarding World is quite interested in how you have turned out, and we all know Aro wants to be the first to know these things. It mustn’t have been too difficult to convince him to come here.”
“Great,” I muttered and Erik placed a hand on my shoulder.
“We’ll be ready for him,” Erik declared confidently. “Ginny and Harry will have to wear gloves. No doubt Aro will want to meet Harry as well, and we can’t have him knowing what they know.”
“Gloves?” Hermione piped up.
Erik turned to her. “Some vampires, as you know, obtain gifts when they transform into a vampire. For example, I know one who can see into the future. Aro’s gift is that he can see everything you’ve ever thought about or experienced just by touching your skin.”
“So if he touched Ginny…”
I swallowed hard. I didn’t want to imagine that.
The next day, I was walking to class alone when I heard a scream from a floor above. I ran up the staircase to the seventh floor, only to see students crowded around the Fat Lady portrait. I squeezed through to get to the front and saw that the painting had been slashed through with nails or claws of some kind. The Fat Lady was nowhere to be seen.
When I turned around, Harry, Hermione, and my brothers were all standing around looking confused.
“What’s going on?” Ron asked.
“The Fat Lady’s gone!”
“What?” Hermione exclaimed. Dumbledore came with Professor McGonagall to examine the painting, and soon Filch came bustling down to say he had found her. We all followed to a portrait of a field to find the Fat Lady hiding behind one of the large oxen in the painting.
“Who did this to you?” Dumbledore asked her kindly.
“He’s here, in the castle! Sirius Black!”*
* Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban movie