Oh God Not Again! - Kapitola 18

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Note: Someone mentioned that it seemed like everyone who died now has knowledge of the future and I want to correct that misconception. Only Harry and Sirius have future knowledge because it isn't dying that's important, it's going through the Veil. Fred's slip of the tongue when he looked into the Mirror of Erised means that he has a crush on Angelina, that's all. As for Dobby, if he had future knowledge, he'd realize that Harry has the whole basilisk situation more-or-less under control and either way has already dealt with the Chamber of Secrets once. The fact he resorts to…unconventional methods of trying to get Harry from Hogwarts is just because Draco stopped him from trying to save Harry and Dobby is just being resourceful. Sorry for any confusion.
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Harry awoke the next morning to the sensation of three stinging hexes cast in quick succession. "Ow!" he complained as he reached for his wand and disarmed his unknown assailant. "What was that for?"
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"Sorry Harry," Percy said apologetically. "But I've heard that trying to wake you up conventionally just gets you hexed for your trouble."
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"So you thought you'd get in a preemptive strike?" Harry asked, annoyed, as he tossed Percy his wand back. "What's so important that you're waking me up at this ungodly hour?"
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"It's 8:30," Percy informed him, rather pompously. Harry rather marveled at the prefect's ability to sound pompous even when doing such mundane things as giving the time. Draco had that same tendency sometimes. It must be a Pureblood thing.
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"No one should be up before nine on a day they don't have class unless it is a matter of life or death," Harry said seriously. "And I'm sure Ron and Neville have explained what happens when people do wake me up. And considering that those are two of my best friends, imagine how badly I'd hex anybody else…"
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Percy gulped. "Indeed. Well, as it turns out, this is an emergency. My sister was petrified last night."
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"Ginny?" Harry repeated disbelievingly. Talk about ironic. She was about the last person Harry would have every expected to get petrified – aside from himself, of course. Clearly Riddle was getting fed up with the lack of results his basilisk was getting due to Harry's ready supply of Mandrake Potion and had decided it was open season instead of bothering with verifying someone's blood status. Not like Pettigrew would even have a way of finding that out, unlike Ginny. "What was she even doing out? There's no way a basilisk could fit in the Gryffindor Common Room, and chances are if it did, someone else would have noticed it."
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"Yes, well," Percy continued, looking a bit awkward. "She *wasn't* in the Common Room…and neither was the boy they found her with."
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Percy peered curiously at him. "Most people your age wouldn't reach that conclusion quite so quickly, if at all."
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Harry shrugged. "Since when have I ever been 'most people'? So who was with her? And are they both alright?"
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"Neville Longbottom," Percy replied promptly. "I believe he is a friend of yours. Do you have any idea what Ginny and Neville were doing out after curfew together? They weren't very far away from the Fat Lady and Peeves was found petrified nearby, so they probably saw the basilisk through him."
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"Wow," Harry said, somewhat shakily. "That was lucky." To think that they hadn't even thought to bring a mirror! If Peeves hadn't happened to be there…that never would have happened the last time. Perhaps it was because Harry's timely interventions meant that no one was petrified for long that no one was taking the threat seriously this time? That could be a problem. He'd have to give Gryffindor a lecture about that later and hoped they spread the word.
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"Indeed," Percy nodded. "If something had happened to Ginny…" he shook his head, leaving the thought unfinished. "Follow me."
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ooOOoo "You killed my cat!" Filch accused the moment the two stepped into the Hospital Wing.
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Harry blinked. "Unless I'm very much mistaken – which is a very real possibility given my almost-constant sense of déjà vu – didn't we already have this conversation?"
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"You did," Dumbledore said gravely. "But alas, Mrs. Norris was attacked again last night."
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"That's, what, four people?" Harry asked. At Dumbledore's nod, he continued, "That's quite a lot for one attack. Oh, here," he handed Madame Pomfrey three vials of Mandrake Potion. "Sorry I don't have one for Mrs. Norris, but I had only heard about Neville, Ginny, and Peeves."
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"SHE DOESN'T NEED YOUR BLOODY POTION, SHE'S DEAD!" Filch roared.
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"Oh," Harry said quietly, taken aback. He hadn't expected that. His friends and fellow students, though tending to get more careless as time went by, at least had the option of carrying around a mirror. Mrs. Norris not only hadn't had a chance in that regard, but apparently hadn't been standing behind Peeves at the time of the basilisk's appearance. He felt horrible for Filch. Granted, the man was unpleasant in the extreme and Harry had often fantasized about killing that accursed cat, but he would never have actually done it. She was all Filch had, really, and being the Squib caretaker in a school full of wizarding children who hated him…Harry resolved to write to Mrs. Figg the minute this was over. He had an idea.
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"No you're not," Filch said bitterly. "You hated her the way everyone always hated her. She wouldn't have given you any trouble if you'd just follow the rules. If those two," he jerked his head towards Ginny and Neville, "had just stayed in their Common Room where they belonged, this never would have happened. It never *should* have happened. " With that, Filch stormed out of the Hospital Wing.
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Harry stood there awkwardly until he heard Ginny start to cough. "Are you okay?" he asked, rushing to her side.
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"Yeah, I-what happened?" she asked slowly.
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"You were attacked by the basilisk last night. It killed Mrs. Norris and petrified you, Neville, and Peeves," Harry explained.
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"I never thought I'd say it," Neville spoke up, also awake now, "but we really owe him one. Let's also never mention this to him lest he tries to enlist our help in some inane prank that will earn us detentions every day for a month."
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