Chapter 97: Hagrid and Buckbeak
A few days later, Harry was discharged from the school hospital and his life seemed to return to its daily routine.
But losing the Quidditch match and what happened in the Common room still had an effect.
Gryffindor Tower’s students looked less energetic, and everyone was really depressed.
Because of what happened with Ron, Hermione was crying all the time. It was a big blow to her. Harry often looked at his Nimbus 2000’s wreckage dumbfounded. Although everyone tried many things to make him happy, it did not work. Wood looked completely unemotional, as if he had lost his life’s purpose. Fred and George were no longer keen on pranks; they were working less and less on new tricks and goods.
However, nobody has changed as much as Ron.
Ron’s behavior became increasingly bizarre. Aside Harry, he hardly spoke to anyone. His temper became really bad and he was unfriendly to all.
He was like an active volcano that had been repressed for a long time and that was ready to erupt at any time.
In Monday’s Potions class, because Malfoy imitated the Dementors to mock Harry, Ron immediately threw a large, gooey crocodile heart at him, right on his face. Snape therefore deducted fifty points from Gryffindor.
Evan did not know if it was just a wrong impression, but he always felt like Ron was someone else.
His eyes were often empty and sluggish, but every time he saw him, he was full of vigilance and hostility, as if he would rush to clash with him at any time.
Evan was not against the idea of a fight if it could solve all problems.
In short, the unexpected failure made the atmosphere in the entire Gryffindor Tower become heavy.
The only thing worth being happy about that happened recently was Professor Lupin’s return to class
In Wednesday’s Defence Against the Dark Arts class, Evan saw Professor Lupin.
It was noticeable that he had been sick. His old robe was worn loose on his body. There were dark shadows underneath his eyes. The Werewolf’s transformation must be a very heavy burden for his body.
Everyone was concerned about Lupin’s physical condition and complained about Snape’s actions during his illness. According to Evan’s knowledge, Snape’s teaching of the Defence Against the Dark Arts classes for all grades when he substituted professor Lupin was the same, revolving around how to identify and kill Werewolves.
Of course, almost none of them took it seriously.
For the young Wizards, in this day and age, Werewolves were like mythical creatures. They thought that they would never come into contact with them in real life.
Apart from Hermione, Evan was not sure who else would have discovered Lupin’s true identity.
Expectedly, Snape was disappointed, as his efforts did not have any effect besides doubling their annoyance.
Professor Lupin has returned, making the Defence Against the Dark Arts class enjoyable again.
In that class, Evan saw Hinkypunk, a new dark creature brought by Lupin. It was a one- legged creature with the appearance of wispy blue, grey-white smoke. It was very frail and looked pretty harmless.
But in reality, it often lured travelers into bogs.
It had a proclivity for luring travelers off of their paths at night, into treacherous bogs or wetlands under the guise of a helpful, lamp-bearing being. When the travelers followed it, they fell into the bogs and died. Hinkypunk made a living from the dead carrions.
Seeing it through the tank, you would never guess that this creature could be so terrible.
The pleasant atmosphere brought about by Professor Lupin’s return only lasted for two hours. When Evan went downstairs to the Common Room for lunch, he saw Hagrid standing in the hall surrounded by Harry, Ron and Hermione.
Hagrid had just returned from the Owlery. He stood there, with his eyes red and swollen, and his tears falling down on the front placket of his leather vest.
“Hagrid, What’s wrong? “Evan walked over and was surprised to see Harry, Ron, and Hermione looking at an official letter.
Evan glanced over and read:
“Dear Mr. Hagrid, further to our inquiry into the attack by a hippogriff on a student in your class, we have accepted the assurances of Professor Dumbledore that you bear no responsibility for the regrettable incident.
However, we must register our concern about the hippogriff in question. We have decided to uphold the official complaint of Mr. Lucius Malfoy, and this matter will therefore be taken to the Committee for the Disposal of Dangerous Creatures.
The hearing will take place on January 25th, and we ask you to present yourself and your hippogriff at the Committee’s offices in London on that date. In the meanwhile, the hippogriff should be kept tethered and isolated. Yours in fellowship…” There followed a list of the school Governors.
“They want to kill Buckbeak!” Hagrid couldn’t help sobbing. His face was full of tears that went on to fall on his tangled beard.
“But Buckbeak isn’t a bad hippogriff!” Harry said with a bit of doubt. “Hagrid, I bet he’ll get off.”
“No, you don’t know those gargoyles at the Committee for the Disposal of Dangerous Creatures.” Hagrid wiped his tears with his sleeves. “They’ve got it in for interesting creatures!”
Hagrid’s words made them look at each other not knowing how to answer.
Hippogriffs, which Hagrid called “interesting animals”, were in the eyes of others absolute “terrifying monsters.”
Even if Buckbeak didn’t hurt anyone, no one would like it.
In fact, by Hagrid’s usual standards, it was actually cute.
However, Evan knew that it had nothing to do with whether or not Buckbeak was cute. Behind all of this was Lucius Malfoy’s mischief.
After failing to remove the Headmaster Dumbledore last year, he was dismissed from the Board of Governors. The reputation of the Malfoy family was worse than ever. In the headmaster’s office there was a discussion about the opening of the Chamber of Secrets, and how a student was able to get Tom Riddle’s diary. Now, rumor has it in the upper classes of the magic world that Lucius Malfoy is giving students Voldemort’s childhood items.
That was not a good reputation. Lucius Malfoy urgently needed something to divert everyone’s attention and restore his family’s prestige.
Hagrid provided him with such an opportunity and he is now strangling him with Buckbeak tightly. That attack had become a rivalry between him and Dumbledore. As long as he is able to keep Hagrid from teaching or to kill the hippogriff, he can regain his lost pride.
Needless to say, the politicians in the Ministry of Magic and the Governors must have made some tradeoffs between the two. They were not willing to offend Dumbledore, nor did they want to abandon the large amount of gold sent by Malfoy.
They could support Dumbledore to allow Hagrid to stay at school to teach. The corresponding exchange condition was to agree that Lucius Malfoy could get Buckbeak killed.
Apart from Hagrid, no one would care about the life or death of a Hippogriff.
The hearing was just a formality. The committee was almost under the control of Malfoy. No matter what Hagrid said, it would not be useful.
In other words, the outcome of this incident was already predetermined.
Regardless of Hagrid’s wishes and whether or not Buckbeak was really mischievous, it was no longer important.
Buckbeak was bound to die. Although cruel, it was a fact!
Perhaps, this is what politics is all about!