Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback

13 1 0

Every time they passed the third-floor corridor, Rain, Ron, and Hermione would press their ears to the door to check that Fluffy was still growling inside. Snape was sweeping about in his usual bad temper, which surely meant that the Stone was still safe.

Hermione, however, had more on her mind than the Philosopher's Stone. She had started drawing up study schedules and color coding all her notes. Rain and Ron wouldn't have minded, but she kept nagging them to do the same.

"Hermione, the exams are ages away."

"Ten weeks." Hermione snapped. "That's not ages, that's like a second to Nicolas Flamel."

"But we're not six hundred years old." Ron reminded her. "Anyway, what are you studying for, you already know it's an A."

"What am I studying for? Are you crazy? You realize we need to pass these exams to get into the second year? They're very important, I should have started studying a month ago, I don't know what's gotten into me."

Unfortunately, the teachers seemed to be thinking along the same lines as Hermione. They piled so much homework on them that the Easter holidays weren't nearly as much fun as the Christmas ones. It was hard to relax with Hermione next to you reciting the twelve uses of dragon's blood or practicing wand movements. Moaning and yawning, Rain and Ron spent most of their free time in the library with her, trying to get through all their extra work.

"I'll never remember this!" Ron burst out one afternoon, throwing down his quill and looking longingly out of the library window. It was the first really fine day they'd had in months. The sky was a clear, forget-me-not blue, and there was a feeling in the air of summer coming.

Rain, who was looking up "Dittany" in One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi, didn't look up until she heard Ron say, "Hagrid! What are you doing in the library?"

Hagrid shuffled into view, hiding something behind his back. He looked very out of place in his moleskin overcoat.

"Jus' lookin'," he said, in a shifty voice that got their interest at once. "An' what're you lot up ter?" He looked suddenly suspicious. "Yer not still lookin' fer Nicolas Flamel, are yeh?"

"Oh, we found out who he is ages ago," said Ron impressively. "And we know what that dog's guarding, it's a Philosopher's St--"

"Shhhh!" Hagrid looked around quickly to see if anyone was listening. "Don' go shoutin' about it, what's the matter with yeh?"

"There are a few things we wanted to ask you, as a matter of fact," said Rain, "about what's guarding the Stone apart from Fluffy—"

"SHHHH!" said Hagrid again. "Listen — come an' see me later, I'm not promisin' I'll tell yeh anythin', mind, but don' go rabbitin' about it in here, students aren' s'pposed ter know. They'll think I've told yeh—"

"See you later, then." Rain agreed.

Hagrid shuffled off.

"What was he hiding behind his back?" Asked Hermione thoughtfully.

"Do you think it had anything to do with the Stone?"

"I'm going to see what section he was in," said Ron, who'd had enough of working. He came back a minute later with a pile of books in his arms and slammed them down on the table.

"Dragons!" He whispered. "Hagrid was looking up stuff about dragons! Look at these: Dragon Species of Great Britain and Ireland; From Egg to Inferno, A Dragon Keeper's Guide."

Thunder and Lightning || Fred WeasleyWhere stories live. Discover now