The students lined up and came forward to embrace Professor Lupin. Everyone embraced the werewolf.
Such a seemingly simple action did not just represent their great courage; it also was a sign of trust.
They whispered to Professor Lupin and spoke words from the depths of their hearts. Many students were moved bursting into tears.
Only Ron and Slytherin students stood still giving the cold shoulder as if they had nothing to do with them.
“This is moving and all, but what does this tell us?” Lucius said softly. “All I saw was a group of fools who were not afraid of being killed by a werewolf.”
“You just said you needed a proof. Here it is!” Harry looked at Lucius and shouted, “What else do you want? Professor Lupin is obviously innocent; he did not attack us at all. He is safe.”
“Tut-tut, stupid kid, if I were you, I wouldn’t think so. Werewolves are not trustworthy.” Lucius looked at Harry disdainfully, and said with a smirk, “He didn’t bite you for now. Probably because he is full, or…”
“Or because there are so many people here that it affects his appetite.” Snape followed Lucius, gloomily. “We all know that, like a real wolf, werewolves have the habit of killing lonely preys.”
He looked at Lupin with malice, and his small black eyes sparkled.
“Severus…” Dumbledore gently reminded.
“I know you trust him, Headmaster!” Snape didn’t look at Dumbledore. His gaze was fixed on Lupin, and he said in a very disgusted tone. “But he has betrayed your trust, although he took the Wolfsbane potion tonight, because of the nature of the werewolf, he still could not help but attack the students, Weasley can prove it.”
“I can prove that this werewolf tried to attack me…”
“Ron, do you know what you’re talking about!” Harry looked at Ron angrily, clinching his fists as his body trembled.
“I’m just telling the truth, Harry!” Ron didn’t look at Harry’s eyes. He turned his head to the side and continued in a dull, monotonous voice. “That werewolf is untrustworthy. It may hurt us. We can’t risk it!”
“Unlike other werewolves, Professor Lupin is innocent!” Harry shouted, Ron’s words made him shiver, he gasped heavily. “We proved it, we just embraced him. We…”
“Just a bunch of brave fools!” Lucius sneered. “You may not even know that a werewolf riot is taking place outside the school tonight. You may not realize the seriousness of this incident. But as a student’s parent, I absolutely do not agree that a werewolf continues to stay in Hogwarts. What do you think, Minister?”
“Oh, I think what you said makes sense. Dealing with werewolves, we must be careful, especially in this current situation, we can’t take risks anymore.” Fudge said, “I’m sorry, Lupin, we must take you away!”
Fudge’s words fell like a final judgment. Professor Lupin trembled. Harry looked extremely frustrated. He couldn’t believe this decision.
“You can’t take Professor Lupin away. He didn’t attack anyone!” Harry shouted, and he hurriedly stood before Professor Lupin.
Behind him, other young wizards came up one after another.
“I’m sorry, kids, I know you all believe in Lupin!” Fudge said hesitantly. “But he is a werewolf after all. Some people in the school don’t believe in him. Someone even accused him of attacking students. We can’t ignore any accusations!”
As he spoke, he turned around and looked at Ron standing at the corner.
“Mr. Weasley?” asked Fudge in an uncertain tone.
“Yes, this werewolf attacked me!” Ron whispered back, “I’ll formally file a lawsuit to the Ministry of Magic.”
“You are lying! Prof. Lupin is innocent!” That was the last straw; Harry’s voice came up violently. He mumbled reluctantly, and his tears flowed out of control.
“As I said before, I’m just telling the truth.”
“Very well, Mr. Weasley! With regard to your accusations, the formal acceptance of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement will be sent to you tomorrow. We must now hurry up and go back. This evening has been really terrible!” continued Fudge “There is still a werewolf riot waiting for me to deal with. Fortunately we caught one of them.”
“No!” Harry quickly stopped Fudge and tried to make a final effort.
Fudge took a step back and stared at Harry and the other young wizards standing in front of Lupin.
“Keep off, Potter! You’ve caused enough trouble already!” Snape shouted. “We are saving you from this werewolf!”
“I’m fine; I don’t need your salvage!” Harry gasped, reluctantly shouting, “I don’t know what happened to Ron tonight, but I can prove that Prof. Lupin is innocent. He had one hundred chances to hurt me this year! I have been alone with him for many times and I learned from him how to resist Dementors. If he wanted to bite me or kill me, why didn’t he do it back then?”
“Don’t ask me about a werewolf’s mind.” Snape pulled his out wand and said sharply. “I repeat, move away, Potter!”
Harry did not speak. He stood with his arms wide open in front of Professor Lupin and showed his determination with actions.
Evan, Hermione, and other young wizards also took a step forward and looked firmly at Snape.
“All right, Snape!” Fudge said franticly. “Don’t blame them. These children have experienced very terrible things today. Greyback has just attacked in Hogsmeade. They now find themselves before their most trusted professor transformed to a werewolf. These things are sure to disturb them…”
“Hold on, Minister!” Evan hurriedly said. “I think Ron’s allegations are invalid. It may be because…”
“Evan, about that matter, I want to talk to you alone!” said Dumbledore suddenly, interrupting Evan’s words.
Evan blinked and looked at Dumbledore in astonishment. He clearly hadn’t said anything yet. What did the Headmaster want to talk to him about?
Or rather, did he already know that Ron was being controlled?!