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And out fell -- a book. Harry just had time to register its handsome green cover, emblazoned with the golden title The Monster Book of Monsters, before it flipped onto its edge and scuttled sideways along the bed like some weird crab.
"I will if she does," said Harry through gritted teeth.
"Yep," said Stan proudly, "anywhere you like, long's it's on land. Can't do nuffink underwater. 'Ere," he said, looking suspicious again, ,You did flag us down, dincha? Stuck out your wand 'and, dincha?"
'Well, it's just that I was sort of right about the Half-Blood Prince business,' she said tentatively.
Malfoy stared at Dumbledore.
Dumbledore's sigh was half a groan. He closed his eyes for a moment.
'I still don't get why he didn't turn you in for using that book,' said Ron. 'He must've known where you were getting it ali from.'
"Rosmerta?" said Professor McGonagall incredulously, but before she could go on, there was a knock on the door behind them and Professors Sprout, Flitwick, and Slughorn traipsed into the room, followed by Hagrid, who was still weeping copiously, his huge frame trembling with grief.
wizardmg group the Weird bisters, hrnie Frang, dnver ol the Knight Bus, Madam Malkin, of the robe shop in Diagon Alley, and some people whom Harry merely knew by sight, such as the barman of the Hog's Head and the witch who pushed the trolley on the Hogwarts Express. The castle ghosts were there too, barely visible in the bright sunlight, discernible only when they moved, shimmering insubstantially in the gleaming air.
'It is nearly time,' she said. 'Please follow your Heads of House out into the grounds. Gryffindors, after me.'
"- Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder," said Ron bitterly. "Fred and George's. I'm going to be having a word with them about who they let buy their products."
"And why should I do that?" sneered Uncle Vernon.
"I'd love to know what Snape told him to convince him," said Tonks.
Harry pulled out the Hogsmeade permission form and looked at it, no longer grinning. It would be wonderful to visit Hogsmeade on weekends; he knew it was an entirely wizarding village, and he had never set foot there. But how on earth was he going to persuade Uncle Vernon or Aunt Petunia to sign the form?
A feeling of great gloom in his stomach, Harry pulled the door open.
"Thank you, Hagrid," said Professor McGonagall, standing up at once and turning to look at the group around Bill's bed. "I shall have to see the Ministry when they get here. Hagrid, please tell the Heads of Houses - Slughorn can represent Slytherin - that I want to see them in my office forthwith. I would like you to join us too."
He looked down at his wand, which he was still clutching in his hand. If he was already expelled (his heart was. now thumping painfully fast), a bit more magic couldn't hurt. He had the Invisibility Cloak he had inherited from his father -- what if he bewitched the trunk to make it feather-light, tied it to his broomstick, covered himself in the cloak, and flew to London? Then he could get the rest of his money out of his vault and... begin his life as an outcast. It was a horrible prospect, but he couldn't sit on this wall forever, or he'd find himself trying to explain to Muggle police why he was out in the dead of night with a trunkful of spellbooks and a broomstick.;