The next day at work Hermione was determined to break through the memory charm. She sighed as she glanced at the clock above her desk. She was going to be late coming home again. Ron was sure to be angry with her. Not that he had any reason to be, she told herself firmly. She cared for Ron, not Gilderoy. His memory charm was just an extremely difficult charm to break…
“Hello,” said Gilderoy, grinning and entering her office once again. She felt the familiar flutter in her stomach like she did whenever he entered the same room that she was in. He was so… intoxicating. She shook her head to clear her mind.
“Hello Gilderoy,” she said trying to sound half-normal, but failing miserably. “Are you ready for me to try again?”
“Try what again?” Lockhart asked looking at her blankly. Hermione sighed. They had been through this dozens of times. It seemed that the memory charm penetrated so deep that Gilderoy could only barely remember simple things like names. Even then he sometimes confused people. He had called her Herbert once. Herbert was her boss. She had not been very flattered.
“I’m just going to do a spell. It won’t hurt,” Hermione replied, not interested in going into the details yet again.
“Oh a spell! How extraordinary!” Gilderoy bubbled with excitement. Hermione led him over to a chair, and instructed him to sit down.
She placed the tip of her wand to Gilderoy’s forehead and muttered the spell. She could feel the magic seeping into Gilderoy’s mind (small as it was). Then suddenly it hit a wall bouncing back at her. She fell a step back and frowned. She needed this to work. She collected her mind and focused all her energy on getting into Gilderoy’s mind and breaking through that barrier.
She placed her wand on his forehead again. She took a deep breath and summoned all the power she could to her. Then she slowly and clearly said the spell. With a rush the magic was infiltrating Gilderoy’s mind. It hit the barrier and threatened to bounce back, but Hermione was ready for it. She braced herself against the barrier and tried to find an opening. One small weakness could cause it to come crumbling down. It was like she was holding her breath underwater. She was reaching her limit. If she didn’t reach the surface soon she would take a breath of water and drown.
Finally she detected a small nick in the barrier. She could have cried out in excitement if she hadn’t been so extremely focused. She had never gotten this far before. Summoning every last piece of energy she could muster, she shot it straight at the crevice. Hermione felt the barrier shatter. She fell back against her desk, breathing hard, her eyes closed. She didn’t want to look. Gilderoy hadn’t made a noise. What if the spell hadn’t worked? She didn’t know what else to try. Then suddenly she heard a soft groan.
“Where am I?” came Gilderoy’s dazed voice. “Where are Harry and Ron?”