Later that evening, just outside Madam Pomfrey’s office inside Hogwarts, a small group was gathered waiting patiently for any word on the condition of Harry: Ginny Weasley set staring into space worriedly, while Ron paced in front of the door impatiently, and setting beside Ginny was a trembling, crying Hermione with Dumbledore setting beside her, rubbing her back soothingly.
“Do not fear, child.” Dumbledore whispered reassuringly, “Young Mr. Potter has made it through worse scraps then this.”
Hermione silently nodded, ‘No he hasn’t.’ She thought angrily, ‘He’s been in some tight situations, but I…I never seen him like that…he looked so pale and there was so much blood…’ Hermione couldn’t continue the thought as the memory sent her into more violent sobs.
The door finally came open and Madam Pomfrey stepped out with an unreadable expression. The teenagers watched her like a hawk, none of them brave enough to ask the question on all their minds, for fear of the answer. Dumbledore finally broke the silence, “How is the boy?”
She looked down sadly, “I’ve done all I can. He has received a major head trauma and has slipped into a light, I hope, coma. He could come out of it any minute or he might not wake up ever again. I am truly sorry.”
Each of them, even Dumbledore, looked like they had been hit with a hammer from the news. “C-Can…we see him?” Hermione choked out.
“Yes,” Madam Pomfrey nodded, “But be warned, he is a little worse for wear.”
“Mr. Weasley.” Dumbledore spoke softly, “You and Ms. Granger may go first, and you two are, I believe, the closest thing he would call ‘family’. And if you would like to spend extra time with him you are both excuse from class until he recovers, now this does not mean you can lay out of all your classes, but I believe he needs you both right now.”
Hermione and Ron nodded before following Madam Pomfrey to their best friend. She led them both into a small hospital-like room where Harry laid motionless, and the sight brought tears to both their eyes. “Oh Harry…” Hermione sobbed setting down at his bedside. His skin was the color of snow but had several bandages covering cuts and bruises, and his eyelids were closed and had a black tint and his lips a blue. His hair could not be seen because of the heavy bandages covering most of his head.
“Don’t worry, Hermione.” Ron said placing a hand on the girl’s trembling shoulder, “Harry’ll pull through.”
Hermione looked back and gave him a weak nod. “They don’t call him the ‘Boy-Who-Lived’ for nothing, you know.” Ron said with a faint chuckle, “I’ll go so Ginny or Prof. Dumbledore can come in. So you want to stay or come with me to get something to eat?”
“If you don’t mind I’d like to stay.” Ron gave a nod and turned and left.
Hermione watched him go before turning back to Harry. She gently took his lip hand in her own and gave it a slight squeeze, “Please come back to us, Harry.” She whispered sadly, “Please come back to me.”
Minutes turned to hours
Hours turned to days
And days turned to weeks
Three weeks had gone by and Harry had yet to show any signs of waking up, and Hermione had yet to show any sign of leaving his side. She was at his bedside constantly and Ron went to class, mostly to bring Hermione’s assignments to her and then he would remain with her and Harry the rest of his free time.
The sun had just begun to shine in the window three weeks to the day of Harry’s ‘accident’. Ron and Hermione had as usual spent the night at Harry’s bed side, Ron was lying in a reclining chair beside Harry’s bed, and Hermione was seating in a chair with her head resting on Harry’s bed while holding his hand. Hermione was sleeping peacefully when she felt a slight squeeze to her hand.
Hermione was resting some-what comfortably, when she heard a very familiar voice, “This is an unfamiliar ceiling …”
Her eyes blinked rapidly and she shot up and her eyes locked with a pair of weak green eyes. Hermione then screamed out in shock and joy, making Ron fall out of his chair, and making Madam Pomfrey come running.
“Harry’s awake!” Hermione chirped happily to Madam Pomfrey.
“What? Oh Dear, Mr. Potter, welcome back to the land of the living!” Pomfrey said checking Harry’s vitals, “How do you feel?”
“How… do I feel?” Harry half groaned half whispered, “Like one of Fluffy’s chew toys.”
“Understandable, considering you hit a large pole going at least sixty five kilometers per hour.” Pomfrey gripped, “I have said those high speed brooms shouldn’t be allowed in Quidditch, but no one bothers to listen to my advice!”
“Are you ok, Harry?” Hermione asked still not letting go of his hand, afraid if she did he would fall back into a coma if she were to let go.
“My head hurts, I feel stiff as a board, and I’m hungry,” Harry said hoarsely, “other then that, I’m marvelous.”
Ron started to say something but found himself being shoved out the door, “Hermione, what are you doing??” Ron complained as she shoved him out the door.
“Harry’s hungry so go and get some food.” Hermione ordered.
“Harry. Hungry. Food. Now.” Hermione emphasized each word with a shove.
“Herm…” Ron started again only to get the door slammed in his face, “…ione. Ok, I’ll go get food, no, no it’s no trouble, your very much welcome, be back in a tick.” Ron muttered as he walked toward the cafeteria.
“Now then,” Hermione said turning back to Harry, “Is he ok, Madam Pomfrey?” Hermione asked worriedly.
“What happened?” Harry asked as Madam Pomfrey placed a fresh bandage around his forehead.
“Your broom caught fire and you went full speed into a pole,” Pomfrey said matter-of-factly.
“Oh. How long was I out?” Harry asked cringing as she tightened the wrap.
“Three weeks exactly,” Pomfrey stated emotionlessly, checking over his injuries.
“Whoa…” Harry gawked, “Three weeks?”
“Ms. Granger?” Pomfrey asked the girl who at this time was in her own little world starring at Harry. “Ms. Granger?” She repeated a little louder finally making her break her trance.
“Oh, do forgive me…” Hermione apologized.
“That just adds to my case, my dear, you must go and rest.” Pomfrey said in her rare moments of kindness, she then turned to Harry, “You see, Mr. Potter, this young lady here has not left your side since you were brought in, and that recliner and that chair she was in this morning is no substitute for a nice feather bed.”
“Hermione?” Harry asked looking surprised at her, “You…stayed with me this whole time?”
Hermione turned bright red, but turned away to hide it, “Um…yes…” She said sheepishly. She then shook her head, “I…I think I’ll go see what’s keeping Ron.”
Harry blinked for a second, “But he’s only been gone for a second.”
“I…uh…” Hermione stuttered, “Forgot to tell him I wanted something too, we’ll be back in a second, Harry, stay awake.” And before Harry could retort she was out the door.
“That was different.”
Hermione ran to catch up with Ron, mostly as an excuse to hide her blush that seemed to not want to go away.
“Haven’t you gotten the food yet, Ron?” Hermione complained when she finally spotted him outside the dinning room.
“I’m working on it, Harry ok?” Ron asked.
“Whatever.” She grunted walking past him.
“Um… ok, anything wrong.” Ron asked confused.
“You know what’s wrong, Weasley.” Hermione stated matter-of-factly.
“You’re not still sore about what happened three weeks ago with the shower, are you?” Ron asked taking a tray of food and a goblet of pumpkin juice. “I thought you said you forgave us!”
“No, Ron,” Hermione said taking a goblet for herself, “I said I forgive you … to Harry.”
“So you’re still angry with me then?” Ron asked the blood slowly creeping from his face.
“To right,” Hermione stated causing Ron to chuckle loudly. “What are you laughing about, Ron?” Hermione asked angrily.
“I get it.” Ron said with a wide grin.
“You get what?” Hermione asked narrowing her eyes but taking a drink from her pumpkin juice.
“Oh that the only reason you’re really mad at me is because I was with Harry when he watched you in the shower.” Ron stated knowingly.
“What the bloody hell are you going on about, Ron?” Hermione asked growing nervous.
“You dirty, dirty little girl,” Ron teased poking her arm. “It all makes sense, you let Harry off the hook with one apology, while with me, and supposedly your other best friend, you hold a grudge for three weeks. It all makes perfect sense. You liked Harry watching you,” Ron teased causing Hermione to cough and make pumpkin juice come out her nose.
“Ron!” Hermione whispered angrily, “Keep it down, we’re being looked at! And you are mistaken, completely mistaken! Honestly!”
The whole dinning room had grown quite quiet listening to the conversation concerning someone watching Hermione in the shower. “Just admit it, ‘Mione, if I wasn’t there who knows what school rules, and very social morals would have been broken that evening!”
Hermione’s face turned the color of Ron’s hair and her mouth moved up and down, like a goldfish, unable to form words.
“I knew it!” Ron yelled victoriously, “You like him! You like Har…” Hermione forcing her hand over his mouth silenced him.
“Shut it, you mindless Git!” Hermione growled. “And I do not like Har… you-know-who.” She said causing gasps from the ears listening to them, “NOT THAT YOU-KNOW-WHO!” She yelled at the room before turning back to Ron.
“Admit it, ‘Mione, if it wasn’t for me being there they’d be little Harry’s and Hermione’s on the way.” Ron unwisely teased.
“Get your bloody mind out of the gutter, Ronald!” Hermione yelled, jerking the tray away from him and pouring her remaining pumpkin juice on his head. “Maybe that will cool you off, pervert! And stop calling me ‘Mione’!”
Hermione and Ron walked back into Harry’s room and were surprised to find Angelina.
“I’m glad you’re alright,” Angelina said sincerely, standing beside his bed, “The whole team’s been worried about you.”
“Thanks,” Harry said shyly, “I look forward to getting back up there with you guys,” he then noticed a sense of worry in her eyes, “Is there something the matter?”
“Oh, nothing serious,” Angelina said with a faint blush, “Just not doing too well in History of Magic.”
“Why don’t you ask Hermione to help you sometime,” Harry said with a smile, “She the smartest witch I’ve ever met, and even though she’s a year behind you, I’m sure she can and would be happy to help you.”
“Speak of the devil.” Angelina said turning to see the blushing Hermione and the drenched Ron.
“What happened to you, Ron?” Harry asked as Hermione placed his tray on his lap.
“Uh…” Ron started but after receiving a glare from Hermione, “nothing important, don’t worry about it.”
“Well, I guess I’ll leave you to your meal, take care, my friend.” Angelina said and nodded good-bye to Hermione and Ron and walked out.
“So…” Harry said taking a bite from his sandwich, “I know that was a spell that hit my broom. There’s no other explanation, willing to bet it was Malfoy too.”
“I was Draco.” Hermione said like it was old news.
“Pardon?” Harry asked blinking.
“It was Draco, they were witnesses.” Ron said in the same way as Hermione.
“Yes, Draco is finally getting what’s coming to him!” Harry cheered happily.
“What are you talking about, Harry?” Hermione asked confused.
“Malfoy was expelled for what he did…wasn’t he?” Harry asked slightly confused on how he could do what he did and still be allowed at school.
“No,” Hermione said as if she didn’t know what Harry was talking about, “It’s not like he tried to kill you.”
Harry set up quickly and looked at Hermione and then at Ron in complete shock, “THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT HE BLOODY TRIED TO DO!”
“Harry, lay back and rest, you should calm down.” Hermione said gently pushing him back down.
“Calm down? Calm down!” Harry yelled angrily, “how the bloody hell did he get away with THIS??”
“It’s not like he really did anything really wrong.” Ron said with a smile, “He publicly apologized, and said he honestly didn’t mean to cause you any harm. In fact he said he would come and visit you later today!”
“Thanks but no thanks.” Harry said looking at Ron in disbelief, “and I think I do need some more rest, thank you.”
“If you say so, Harry, I’ll talk to you later.” Ron said as he turned and walked out the door.
Harry then turned toward Hermione, and she looked at him slightly confused.
“Hermione,” Harry said sounding uncharacteristically distant, “I said I needed some rest.”
“Oh.” She whispered sadly, “Ok. I guess…I’ll come back and check on you later today. Bye, Harry.” She said her eyes showing moisture around the rims of her eyes, but whipped around and left him alone.
“Wonder what’s bugging him?” Ron asked Hermione who was walking slightly ahead of him, “Oh, right, not speaking to me, probably bed wedgey, if you ask me.”
A week later, Harry finally was released from Madam Pomfrey’s care, but still had to wear a bandage around his forehead.
Harry still didn’t full understand how Draco got off the hook but he wasn’t about to give up trying to figure out how. He and Ron walked down the halls toward their class when a voice behind them,
“Looks like Scar-head finally got came back. I missed you.” Draco said with a smirk, “Well, not really, I was just being polite.”
“You couldn’t be polite if your life depended on it.” Harry snapped.
Draco looked taken back for a moment but quickly gathered himself, “Is that a challenge, Potter?”
Harry answered by pulling out his wand.
“So be it, Potter.” Draco said pulling out his own wand, “You just got out of the hospital, I really hate to put you back in.”
“Big talk, Draco.” Harry smirked holding his wand out before him.
“I tell you what, Potter, seeing as you’ve been out of practice for the last few weeks; I’ll let you have the first shot.” Draco said boastfully.
“Your funeral, Draco!” Harry said as he waved his wand at Draco, and stood for a moment, blinked, and waved it again.
Waved it several more time and audibly spoke every spell he knew, but nothing happened. He began to shake the wand wildly and then remember the situation. He gulped loudly and slowly looked up toward Draco fearfully.
Draco smiled at Harry and pointed his wand right at Harry, “my turn…Flipendo!”
That same moment, Hermione was walking on the outside of the school to save time getting to class when she heard a window crash and someone screaming above her.
“Wha…UMPH!” She cried when something heavy landed on top of her forcing her on her back.
Harry’s slowly pulled himself to his hands and knees, still not opening his eyes; “At least…I landed on something really soft.” Harry moaned and opened his eyes and his whole body turned crimson when he realized he was straddling Hermione.
“Harry, what, in Merlin’s name, are you doing?” Hermione asked surprised.
“I’m so sorry, oh Merlin, I am so very sorry, oh Hermione, I’m sorry, I uh I better go and um I really need to talk to Prof. Dumbledore!” Harry stuttered as the two pulled themselves to their feet and he dashed toward Dumbledore’s office leaving.
“What’s going on?” Hermione asked as Harry dashed away.
Later that evening in Dumbledore’s office, Harry set before, Prof. Dumbledore, Prof. Snape, Prof. McGonagall, and Madam Pomfrey. “It seems Mr. Potter here has sustained damage to the part of the brain that gives him the ability to sense and use magical energies.” Madam Pomfrey explained.
“Is there any way to cure the boy?” Prof. Dumbledore asked looking sadly at the shocked and fearful Harry.
Madam Pomfrey looked around the room and settling on Harry’s eyes and the look she gave him made his heart drop to his shoes. “I’m sorry, I am afraid Mr. Potter is now nothing more then a Muggle. I can do nothing to help him.” She sighed sadly as tears formed in Harry’s teenaged eyes. He was just almost a year and a half away, almost a year and a half from becoming a full-fledged wizard. Now it was all taken from him in an instant.
“Please…” Harry fought off a sob, “Please don’t say that. Please tell me there’s something you can do, I can do!” He begged tears running down his face.
“I’m terribly sorry, Mr. Potter, I truly am.” Pomfrey sighed.
“Seeing as Mr. Potter no longer has the gift of magic,” Snape said emotionlessly as if the heartbroken teen wasn’t in his presence anymore, “I feel he should be removed from Hogwarts posthaste.”
“I don’t…” Dumbledore started but was interrupted by Snape again.
“You know I do not feel as though the school should be aloud to dismiss Potter after all,” He said bringing a shocked look from everyone in the room, “He himself has saved this school on countless occasions selflessly. So perhaps the decision of the staff could be considered bias. If I may make a suggestion perhaps we can allow the students to decide Harry Potter’s fate.”
Dumbledore nodded at this, “Yes, I feel that is the right thing to do. Mr. Potter,” He said turning his attention to the upset teenager, “Go back to your dormitory; the voting will take in a school assembly in the morning. Do try not to worry about it, there is always hope.”
Harry nodded sadly and turned to go, “Goodnight.” He then sadly made his way to the Gryffindor commons and found Hermione and Ron waiting for him.
“Harry, what’s the matter?” Hermione asked seeing his tearstained face.
Harry slowly walked over and set down between the two and told them what he was told in Dumbledore’s office.
“Oh Harry.” Hermione sighed sadly her own eyes rimming with tears.
“I…don’t know Harry, maybe you leaving isn’t such a bad idea.” Ron said looking as though he was in deep thought.
“RON! HOW COULD YOU SAY THAT?” Hermione cried out in shock.
“Well, after Draco sent him out that window, it almost got him and you hurt. What if that happens again?” Ron said trying to show them his point, “I’m just saying…It isn’t safe here if Harry can’t defend himself, and if Draco can easily harm him, what about You-Know-Who?”
“I’ll…er…we’ll protect him! Draco and Voldemort will have to…” She said blushing lightly at the first but cut short when Harry abruptly stood and walked silently toward the dorm rooms. “Harry?”
Harry made his way to his bed, lay down and curled up into a ball. “Why?” he asked no one in particular before crying himself to sleep.
The next morning, the school assembled in the dinning hall at their respected tables, they all were chatting, wondering what this was all about, except Harry, who was looking nervous and sick, and Ron and Hermione who were setting on either side of Harry and watching their friend sadly. Then suddenly Prof. Dumbledore clapped his hands to draw attention to him. “May I have your attention?” Dumbledore requested as Hermione silently took Harry’s hand and gave it a gentle squeeze. Harry looked over at her sadly, and she mouthed ‘It’ll be all right’.
Dumbledore sadly informed the school of Harry’s condition, which earned many shocked looks and gasps and chuckles from the Slytherin table. “We have decided that the School Faculty could be considered bias on the grounds of Harry Potter’s fame and also the numbers of time he has saved this school from certain doom, we have determined that the best course of action would all you, Harry Potter’s piers, Harry Potter’s Friends decide weather or not he is to be aloud to remain here at Hogwarts with his hindered magical ability.” Dumbledore then looked down at the trembling Harry, “Mr. Potter would you be as so kind to leave the room while we conduct the vote?” Harry gave a weak nod and got up to leave.
Before he could leave the table Hermione got up and gave him a tight hug, “What ever happens, you can always count on me to be there for you, Harry, always.” Hermione whispered in his ear.
“Thanks, ‘Mione.” Harry whispered back then walking out the door of the dinning hall.
Harry stood out there for a moment, but the tension got to him quickly. “Forgive me, Prof. Dumbledore, I have to know,” Harry said as he pulled out his invisible cloak from his bag. Harry slowly made his way into the dinning hall, being extra careful not to be spotted by Dumbledore, who was the only one Harry knew who could see through the invisible cloak. Harry finally found a good spot beside a pillar where he could plainly see the whole room.
“Now, Students,” Dumbledore announce, “Let us begin the voting.” He then looked around the room and took a deep breath, “All those in favor of Harry Potter being dismissed permanently from Hogwarts School of Wizards and Witchcraft, please stand up.”