Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Chapter Summary and Analysis - Part Two
This, actually, is the book which prompted my interest in the Harry Potter series. Unfortunately, the US market didn't "catch on" to the J K Rowling books until they had already been a success in Brittan. Because of the (sometimes even angry) detractors claiming they should not be read by children; the parents of my patients began asking for my advice. After all, how do you keep your child from even wanting to read the book when nearly his whole school class is talking excitedly about it? And, after all, having your son or daughter sit down and actually read 341 pages - and do it willingly - can't be all bad… can it?
I've recommended to several parents that they begin a nighttime reading ritual with their child, to good effect. And I've even had the chance to read a chapter or two to some patients I was working with on their learning disabilities. I had a copy in my office and when I needed to evaluate an older child's reading ability I let them read a paragraph from the latest book. Many times they didn't want to quit! If a parent is concerned about what their child is "learning" from the books, reading it with them (or at least discussing it with them afterward) is ideal. Especially what Dumbledore has to say!
- Literary annotations:
In this category are special annotations about literary aspects of the chapter. Author's intent, style, and explanations of word meanings are some of the types of entriesParent's Guide annotations:
In this category are annotations for parents and other care givers of children. Ideas for discussions which will not only make the story more interesting but enable children to understand how it can apply their own lives. Hero's Journey annotations:
In this category are special annotations about how the book is following Joseph Campbell's outline for the "master mythological styling."
- Mudbloods and Murmurs
- It was easier to dodge Professor Lockhart than Colin Creevey, Harry found. The tiny pest was everywhere at once all day long, with his ever present camera to document his every encounter with his idol Harry. Ron wasn't having a much better time with his broken wand, which was now shooting out of his hand and hitting professors. Oliver Wood awakened Harry before dawn for an unscheduled Quidditch practice, and of course Colin was there to document it with his camera. Wood, however, spent until after the sun was up explaining the new training he had concocted; and by then the Slytherin team was awake and on the field, with a "special permission letter" from Snape. Draco was their new seeker, probably because his father had bought the whole team new Nimbus 2001 broomsticks. The inevitable argument was joined by Ron, Hermione and Colin, from the stands; and, of course, Malfoy couldn't pass up the opportunity to draw his own crowd by insulting both Ron and Harry. Hermione defended them by saying "at least none of their daddy's had to buy their sons way onto the team," which made Draco's self-satisfied grin turn into rage. " Malfoy called her a "Mudblood" and the whole Gryffindor side was mobilized into anger. Flint had to keep Fred and George from jumping on Malfoy and Ron shot a spell under Flint's arm at Malfoy's face. Unfortunately, the jet of green light came out the back end of the wand and hit Ron in the stomach, knocking him on his backside. He was unable to speak, due to the slugs which kept drooling out of his mouth. Malfoy and the Slytherins were rolling on the ground with laughter as Harry and Hermione took Ron over to Hagrid's cabin.
Lockhart was just leaving the cabin, seemingly shocked that Hagrid had never read any of his books; and Hagrid wasn't all that Happy himself. He brightened some, seeing the three; but said Ron would just have to wait it out for the slugs to be gone. Their conversation turned to Lockhart, who had "banged on" about some banshee that Hagrid didn't believe was true. When Hermione tried to defend him, Hagrid said Lockhart was the only one who would even take the job; because, every one else thought the position was jinxed and the professor never seemed to last very long. Harry, who had never heard the term, asked what "Mudblood" meant. Hagrid said that if that's what Malfoy had called Hermione, he didn't blame Ron for cursing him. It means "Dirty blood," Ron said, the most insulting, disgusting thing someone can call a Muggle-born someone with non-magic parents. People like the Malfoy's think having "pure-blood" makes them better than everyone else. Ron's slug-belching seemed to subside and Hagrid showed them the giant pumpkins he was growing for the Halloween feast; "Givin' 'em a little help," he said, pointing to a pink umbrella leaning against the wall. Harry believed that the umbrella must contain Hagrid's broken wand from when he was expelled in his third year. He had never found out why, because Hagrid wouldn't talk about it; but he had seen Hagrid use the umbrella before, to give Dudley a tail. Before the trio left, Hagrid teased Harry about giving out signed photos. "Jus' kiddin'," he said, then added that he had met Ginny, who had come down claiming that she was "looking for someone," with a wink and a laugh toward Harry.
Just their luck, they met McGonagall back at the castle, who assigned them their detentions: Ron with Filch and Harry with Lockhart (who had specifically asked for him.) At eight o'clock Ron went to polish the silver in the trophy room, by hand; and Harry went to help Lockhart answer fan mail and listen to man drone on incessantly about himself until midnight. Harry was startled out of his near-coma like stupor by a voice, "a voice to chill the bone marrow, a voice of breath-taking, ice-cold venom." "Come to me," it said, "Let me Rip you… tear you… kill you… ." Incredibly, Lockhart said he didn't hear a thing, but realized it was near midnight and let Harry go back to his dormitory. Ron returned a half-hour later complaining that he had another slug attack all over a Special Award for Services to the School trophy which then took hours to remove the slime. After he heard what had happened to Harry, neither could believe that Lockhart hadn't heard it too; and neither had even a clue what it had been.
- Banged on: A British term meaning to speak more or longer than needed to make a point.A Voice: What a masterful description of the voice for Rowling to use. "Bone marrow," "venomous" and "taking the breath," all convey, if not subliminally, the danger which is to come.Genealogy: A persons ancestry has often been the focal point of tyrants looking for an excuse to defend their deep seated feelings of inferiority. The "short man" syndrome often finds its release in rationalization that "something" (a category in which the inferior man fits) makes the man "superior" to others. Race, religion, gender have all been fair game for the criterion used by the worlds tyrants.Retaliation: A parent may want to take an opportunity to discuss responding to being taunted or ridiculed. Parenting styles are different; but there may be a distinction between responding to "words" versus responding to "physical action" or safety.
The character in question is clearly acting from a deep feeling of inadequacy or inferiority, as is usually the case with bullies. The constancy and severity of his taunts would also mean that it is probably within the setting of "enabling" from parents and peers and "mentoring" from his parents. In this case, appealing to Draco's parents would probably meet on deaf ears.
"Do you know anyone like this?" might be a revealing question. Discussing the "options" could be tailored to a child's situation.
- The Deathday Party
- In the illness producing, October, bullet sized rain, Harry stood dripping mud onto the castle floor following a miserable Quidditch practice. He hadn't joined Ginny and the spate of other students braving Madam Pomfrey's Pepperup potion for their head colds… yet; but he may if he didn't strip out of his wet clothes immediately. Distracting his dash to Gryffindor tower, however, a forlorn Nearly Headless Nick was holding a letter and muttering to himself: "Don't fulfill their requirements… ." Stopping to commiserate with his house ghost, Harry learned that Nick had been rejected by the Headless Hunt club; because, even though he had been hit forty-five times with a blunt axe, his head hadn't completely come off. The cat belonging to caretaker Filch, Mrs. Norris, surreptitiously arrived and mewed loudly to summon its master. Before Harry could avoid capture, Harry found himself in the caretakers office awaiting decision about punishment for "befouling the castle." A loud crash came from the room above and Filch left, thinking he could catch Peeves the poltergeist in action. Awaiting his assumed doom, Harry spotted and read a brochure for a remedial magic course on Filch's desk. Then when Filch returned, he became so flustered about what Harry might have seen that Harry escaped punishment. It turned out that Nick had tempted Peeves to crash a large black and gold cabinet as a distraction, and it worked. Feeling grateful, Harry accepted Nick's invitation to attend his 500th deathday party on Halloween.
Ron and Hermione accompanied Harry past the Great Hall and down into the dungeon for the party to keep his promise. It was cold, dark and spooky and the room was filled with odd ghosts from all over the country; including: the Fat Frier, Hufflepuff's ghost, and the Bloody Baron from Slytherin. The food had been allowed to putrefy so that the ghosts, passing through it, might "taste" it better. A cake had been decorated to read: "Dir Nicholas De Mimsy-Porpington, Died 31st October, 1492." Hermione noticed a ghost who routinely haunted a girls bathroom toilet on the first floor and tried to avoid meeting her. Peeves however appeared and summoned Moaning Myrtle over to them, in order to taunt her. Before it was over, Myrtle fled sobbing from the dungeon with Peeves following her calling "Pimply! Pimply!" Just as Nick was beginning his speech, the Headless Hunt galloped their horses into the room and began playing Head Hockey, which drowned him out and gave the three an opportunity to leave.
On the way up to the entrance hall, Harry heard the same cold voice that he had heard with Lockhart. It seemed to come from the stone wall but then moved upward through the ceiling. "Rip… tear… kill… hungry, so long… time to kill… I smell blood… ," it said, as the three followed the voice up several stairs to the second floor. Rounding a corner, they stopped short of a puddle of water on the floor and a large message on the wall: "The Chamber of Secrets has been opened, enemies of the heir, beware." Something was hanging from a torch bracket and they realized that it was a stiff Mrs. Norris hanging by its tail. The feast had just let out and the corridor soon filled with students who were stunned into silence; until the arrogant, nasal voice of Draco Malfoy threatened through the dark: "Enemies of the heir beware! You'll be next, Mudbloods!"
- Hyperbole: The book's language: 'raindrops the size of bullets' is a clever exaggeration for comedic effect describing a rainstorm which is difficult to endure. Comedic Foil: Lightheartedness may be used as a 'foil' to make subsequent negative episodes have greater impact. Comedic events prior to the discovery of Mrs. Norris makes the event all the more startling. Dating Harry: Giving Nick's deathday is a dream come true to die-hard Harry Potter fans who searched and argued about Harry's birth-year since book one. Five hundred years plus 1492 places the party in 1992. Harry is twelve (entered school at eleven) therefore was born in 1980. Homophones: Words sounding the same but with different meanings and spellings are homophones. The initial 'H' being silent, 'heir' and 'air' are pronounced identically, but have different meanings. Harry's Personality: Notice how Harry acts toward others. Nick is sometimes difficult to be around; but, Harry treats him kindly and with respect. As onery and hateful Filch is, Harry is not shown responding in kind (while the author allows others to malign to their hearts content.) Harry accepted the invitation full of courtesy and his promise was his bond.
Also notice the interaction with Myrtle. While Hermione described her character flaws Harry was silent.
- The Writing on the Wall
- When the crowd drew Filch to the scene and he saw his cat, he flew into a rage and immediately accused Harry because the boy had discovered that he was a "Squib." Dumbledore had to intervene and take them to his office. Lockhart, as usual, made a grand play and offered his office which was on the same floor, then began pretending that he knew exactly what had happened and that it was too bad he hadn't been there to save the cat. Paying no attention to the self-serving babble, Dumbledore examined the cat carefully and pronounced her "not dead, only petrified," and that it could not have been the kids, because second-years couldn't have done that dark of magic. Snape questioned why they had even been in that corridor, at that time. Because Harry didn't reveal he had heard a voice, Snape said Harry was lying and should be suspended from Quidditch until he told the truth. Filch was demanding punishment, but Dumbledore said a restorative potion could be made when Professor Sprout's Mandrakes were old enough. Lockhart offered to make it, but Snape maliciously backed him down saying: "I'm the potions master!"
Later the three talked about what had happened and Ron had to explain to Harry that a squib was the reverse of a Muggle-born non-magic into a magic family. Ron agreed that Harry should keep his hearing the voice to himself, and had only a vague recollection that he might have heard the name Chamber of Secrets before. In the days following, Hermione obviously went directly to the library, but found nothing there. So she asked Professor Binns, a ghost who taught history of magic, to explain about the chamber. Never remembering being asked a question before, Binns reluctantly described the founding of Hogwarts by four wizard friends: Helga Hufflepuff, Rowena Ravenclaw, Godric Gryffindor and Salazar Slytherin. They cooperatively built the castle together; but, when students began arriving, arguments ensued. Slytherin wanted to limit magical education to only pure-bloods. Eventually the arguments exploded into Slytherin's leaving the school; but, rumor was that he had left a secret chamber in the school which could only be opened by his heir. The heir would then unleash the terror within and purge the school of unworthy students. Years of searching by the best headmasters had revealed nothing, so the chamber was thought to be just a myth. Later, Harry said that he could only think of one family who wanted to frighten squibs and Muggle-born out of Hogwarts, and who thought Muggle-born were scum the Malfoy's.
For some reason Ginny seemed to be inordinately upset over the incident and what had happened to the cat. Justin Finch-Fletchy's group was whispering that Harry was the heir and avoiding him in the halls. Even though he believed it was Malfoy who was at fault, Harry couldn't help but remember that the sorting hat had considered placing him in Slythern. Filch hadn't been able to remove the writing from the wall, and they found themselves examining the area one day. Hermione noticed an unusual, single-line formation of spiders in the window sill, all trying to exit the school through a crack. Ron revealed his arachnophobia, stemming back from when Fred had turned his teddy bear into a giant spider, and couldn't even get close to the window. Harry found scorch marks on the wall and they realized that the puddle of water they had seen, had been mopped up. It had probably come from the "out of order" bathroom, whose door was right there. Hermione said that they all could go in, because the room was never used because it was haunted by Moaning Myrtle. They found Myrtle hovering in one of the stalls of the decrepit room and she was suspicious that they were just there to see "how nice" it was like they told her. They told Myrtle about the cat; but, she said that she had been so upset by Peeves, she hadn't noticed anything. She had come back to the bathroom depressed, and "tried to kill myself… but remembered that I'm… ." "Already dead," Ron helpfully finished for her. Myrtle shrieked with despair and dove back into the bowl, splashing water everywhere. Percy caught the three coming out of the girls bathroom and threatened to write to their mother if they continued any detective work. He implored them to think of Ginny who was distressed to distraction about all of this. Later, it was Hermione who brought the subject back up and offered a plan to find out if Malfoy was involved. All they needed was Polyjuice potion, which could turn a person into someone else temporarily. They could become Slytherins and merely go ask Draco. The recipe was in a book in the restricted section of the library and they needed a professors note to check it out. They wondered who would be "thick enough" to give them one.
- Thick enough: Used to mean someone, who, for one reason or another, either could not or would not use adequate mental faculties to act on a problem. In this case, they will be referring to Lockhart, who is so caught up in himself, that he can be easily manipulated.Respect: Again, notice how Harry seemed to keep his interactions with unfortunate Myrtle on a respectful level. Ron, on the other hand, doesn't seem to be deliberately malicious; but, often speaks without thinking how what he says will effect others and is therefore hurtful.
- The Rogue Bludger
- Because his first lesson was so disastrous, Lockhart began merely acting out episodes from his many books to the class. Infuriatingly, he only seemed to use Harry as his "acting partner" and today Harry had to be the werewolf Lockhart had fought and was being made to "howl loudly." Trying to keep Lockhart in a good mood, Harry complied and it worked, because Hermione was able to obtain the signed permission slip with only a bit of flattery. Mrs. Pince, the librarian, gave them the "evil eye," obviously suspicious; but, brought the potions book they needed. Hiding back in Myrtle's bathroom, and ignoring her wailing, they realized that the book was really evil and that the Polyjuice Potion they needed had many ingredients. Some they would need to steal from Snape's private cupboard, another was a piece of whoever they wanted to turn in to and it would require a whole month to stew. Realizing the risk, the boys grew fainthearted to the deed; but, Hermione actually shamed them into agreeing to go forward.
Wood gave his usual pep-talk to the Gryffindor Quidditch team, basically by implying it was up to Harry to win. The team needed something, because they were totally out-classed by the Slytherin's new broomsticks. Adding to the misery, it began to rain. When Madame Hooch's whistle blew one of the bludgers flew right at Harry's head. Fred and George batted it away but it swung around and attacked him again. It was all the Weasleys could do to keep the thing from knocking Harry's brains out. Even though Harry was too occupied to know what the rest of the team was doing, he heard the score, 60 to nothing for Slytherin, and he heard Fred ask for a time out. Bludgers aren't supposed to attack only one person the whole game so they thought the ball must have been tampered with. Harry claimed that "if we stop now, we'll have to forfeit the match," and demanded that the Weasley's leave him alone to manage the bludger, so he could be able to spot the snitch. The Weasley's violently disagreed but Wood overrode them and the game resumed. Harry's frantic "ballet" to avoid the mad bludger became the focus of taunts from Malfoy. Harry spotted the snitch floating right next to Malfoy's head and in the split second distraction, the bludger exploded on his arm, breaking it into pieces. In spite of the pain, Harry shot directly at Malfoy, causing the cowardly weasel to duck and Harry caught the snitch before falling to the ground.
He awoke to find many people in his face, including Lockhart who grandiosely threw a spell at Harry's arm, despite refusals of help. Instead of mending the bones, however, the incompetent removed them. Harry was left with a limp rubber glove for an arm, and Lockhart merely said: "yes, well, that can happen" and sent him to the hospital wing. Madame Pomfrey told Harry she could re-grow the bones, but it would be painful and he must stay overnight. She made him change into pajamas then made everyone leave. He was awakened at night with pain in his arm and Dobby wiping his forehead with a rag. During their conversation about why the house-elf was there, Harry discovered that it had been Dobby who had closed the train platform AND who had jinxed the bludger. "Never to kill you, Harry Potter," Dobby wept, "to save your life… better be sent home grievously injured than remain here." Harry was about as upset as he ever got and said that the elf had better not be there when he got his arm back or he would be strangled. Dobby said that he was used to death threats because he got them all the time. He said the rags he wore were a mark of an elf's enslavement and they could not be set free unless their masters gave them clothes. "Master is careful to never even toss me a sock," Dobby said, "or I could be free." History was to repeat itself now that the Chamber is open again, Dobby said, and Harry must not be there when the planned dark deeds happen. Harry hotly refused saying that "one of my best friends is Muggle-born; she'll be first in line… and I'm not going anywhere!" Dobby called Harry "noble" and "valiant," but had to disappear when Dumbledore came in carrying a body. It was Colin Creevey, holding his camera up to his face and petrified. Dumbledore said that he believed the boy had been sneaking up to visit Harry when he was attacked and that it meant the Chamber of Secrets was really open. To her question, the Headmaster told McGonagall that it "wasn't a question of who; but, how."
- Forfeit the match: This is an absurdity on the face of it! Perhaps requiring the offended team to loose because they discovered that their opponents were cheating is a possibility in the British environment; but, it seems foreign to the U.S. environment (and I expect it is to the British as well). The author obviously needed the game to continue and not waste words in an investigation; but, it seems a more reasonable argument should have been requested by the editors - especially from the main character. Hermione's change: It is a bit unexpected to see Hermione so recklessly abandon her sense of piety. This is a girl who, in last book, thought the risk of getting expelled was worse than getting killed. Perhaps it comes from some feelings of vulnerability now that she realizes she is in the targeted class. It definitely intensifies to the reader the feeling that this is no longer a game or simple taunting.Compounding of errors: As is usually the case, something which seems a bit 'dodgy' tends to grow in proportion and leads to the necessity of committing other 'sins' in order to continue. Here, a plan to deceive Malfoy (albeit for a noble cause) grows to manipulating Lockhart, deceiving Pince and stealing from Snape.Manipulation: To use a persons weaknesses against them to obtain one's own agenda is called manipulation and is not acceptable behavior for a person striving to be honest. In this case, Lockhart is so arrogant and caught up with himself, that it makes him easy to manipulate.
Why would flattery impress Lockhart so much? Could it be that he secretly feels inadequate and giving him feigned compliments makes him feel worthwhile? Manipulating someone is not the act of a noble person; and one should make efforts to learn what things tend to flatter us, in order to prevent others from using them to manipulate us.Shaming: One of the techniques used in manipulation is "Shaming." To taunt someone with the intent of making them feel worthless or ashamed is an often used technique to get someone's own way. Has someone ever called you "chicken?" Or "baby" or "sissy?" That should be a clue that they want something; not, that you are inadequate.
- The Dueling Club
- His arm healed and pronounced well by Madame Pomfrey, Harry left the Hospital Wing heading straight for Moaning Myrtle's bathroom. Hermione and Ron were there, beginning the Polyjuice potion in one of the stalls over some of Hermione's conjured flames. Harry told them about Dobby and they all thought for sure it must have been Draco's father who opened the Chamber before, and now Draco had taken over. But, they wished Dobby would have at least told them what the monster was that was in the Chamber. There was a roaring trade in phony magical talisman's and Neville bought several, despite the fact that he was pure-blood. Hermione decided that she should be the one to steal the last two components from Snape's cupboard; but, she would need a diversion, which in Snape's class was about "like poking a sleeping dragon in the eye." Malfoy had signed up to stay at school over Christmas, which they thought was suspicious, so that was when they decided to use the potion. Harry caused the diversion by tossing one of Fred's fireworks into Goyle's swelling potion. When it exploded, it splashed all over Malfoy and most of the Slytherins, and Hermione returned to the class in the confusion with bulging robes full of ingredients. Snape looked directly at Harry when he said that if he ever found out who had done it, he would see them expelled.
A dueling club was started and most students signed up before realizing it was Lockhart who had started it. Snape had agreed to help and was back-handedly insulted during Lockhart's introduction. When it came time for a demonstration the kids could recognize Snape's bared teeth, so knew Lockhart was in for trouble. On a three count Snape cried "Expelliarmus" and knocked Lockhart across the room and into the wall. The git pretended that he had let Snape blast him, for instructional purposes; but, said there would be no more demonstrations. Snape got to Harry first and forced him to pair with Draco. Hermione was placed with Millicent Bulstrode. Instructed to disarm only, Malfoy cheated by starting on "two" instead of three and hit Harry in the stomach with something. Still holding his wand, Harry returned "Rictusempra" (tickling spell) then sportsmanlike didn't follow up while Malfoy was on the ground. Malfoy, on the other hand, threw another: "Tarantellegra," which made Harry's legs dance uncontrollably. Snape took charge and called "Finite Incantatem." Ron was apologizing to his partner for whatever his broken wand had done; but, Hermione and Millicent had both dropped their wands and were in hand-to-hand combat. Lockhart decided he should have started with "blocking spells" and asked Neville and his partner to demonstrate. Snape intervened, insulting Neville, and suggested Harry and Draco instead. Lockhart instructed Harry "just do this" and gave a silly, complex, waggle of his wand and dropped it to the floor. Snape whispered in Draco's ear then called "three, two, one, go." Draco cried "Serpensortia" (which wouldn't have been stopped by a blocking spell) and a great snake plopped to the floor ready to strike Harry. Lockhart cast a spell to get rid of it, but instead just flung it into the air making it mad and ready to strike Justin Finch-Fletchley. Without thinking, Harry stepped forward and called to it "leave him alone!" Unexpectedly, the snake slumped to the floor and merely looked at Harry. Instead of thanking Harry, Justin flew into a rage and was yelling "what are you playing at" as Ron removed Harry from the room. Back in Gryffindor tower, Ron explained that Harry had spoken Parseltongue snake language, and Harry remembered that he had once talked to a Brazilian Boa Constrictor at the Zoo, which claimed it had never been to Brazil. Ron told him that it was bad, almost no one else could do it and it was what Salazar Slytherin was famous for. All Justin heard was snake language and now everyone might think Harry was related to Slytherin. Harry fussed about it during the night and was worried because the Sorting Hat had indeed wanted to put him in Slytherin House.
The next day Harry tried to find Justin to explain, but ran across a group of Hufflepuff's talking with Ernie McMillan. Ernie said he had told Justin to hide out in the dormitory then bad-mouthed Harry for being a Parselmouth and claimed he must be the Heir of Slytherin. He blamed Harry for having a run-in with Filch then cursing his cat; then being annoyed by Collin and cursing him." Justin told Harry that he was Muggle-born and expects Harry to come after him next," Ernie gossiped. Harry stepped out from behind the door and everyone went quiet. Ernie wouldn't listen to any reasoning from Harry, so Harry stormed out and ran into Hagrid. He couldn't tell Hagrid what Ernie had been saying, so listened as Hagrid complained that something had killed two chickens so far this term and he was on his way to tell Dumbledore about it. Harry was walking back to the tower to get his books when he stumbled over two lumps: Justin and Nearly Headless Nick. Both had been petrified. He was so stunned that his legs wouldn't work and he just stood there while Peeves floated into sight. Seeing the bodies, Peeves yelled at the top of his lungs until the corridor was full of people. McGonagall had to restore order and send everyone back to class. Ernie arrived and accused "caught you in the act" and Peeves invented a new song to sing about killing. Justin was carried to the Hospital by two teachers, but McGonagall had to conjure a fan and have Ernie waft Nick like a hovercraft. She told Harry "it's out of my hands," and took him to some gargoyles on the fifth floor where she uttered a password: "Lemon drops." A door opened and a spiral escalator stairs took them up to some large Oak doors the entrance to Dumbledore's quarters.
- Poking a dragon with a stick: The Hogwarts school motto, is "Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus," which means "Never tickle a sleeping dragon." Thus the analogy of disturbing a dragon and Snape's wrath would come naturally to Harry.A 'Harry' sandwich: The fracas at the dueling club is another example of how Harry finds himself in the middle of someone else's problem. Lockhart doesn’t seem to be able to leave Harry alone because of his need to be associated with publicity. Snape can't leave Harry alone, for whatever reason. The duel was not so much between Harry and Draco as it was between Harry and Snape and Lockhart.Un-rewarded Good Deeds: Good deeds don't always get rewarded, as Harry found out. What was the reason Justin got angry with Harry? What could have Justin done to resolve the issue? What could Harry have done? Difference between Harry and Malfoy: This would be yet another good time to see if a child reader can spot the critical differences in personalities between Draco and Harry. Draco cheats by starting early, doesn't follow rules of the game, uses spells that will harm. Harry follows rules (mostly), plays fair, doesn't strike a defenseless opponent and uses defensive spells.
- The Polyjuice Potion
- Atop the stairs, McGonagall left Harry just through the Oak door, inside a large circular room filled to a tinkerer's delight with curious magical instruments. If he hadn't been scared witless of being expelled, he would have delighted in exploring. As it was, however, he merely took notice of the walls being entirely covered with portraits of prior head-masters and mistresses all looking asleep… and the Sorting Hat! Completely by compulsion, he had to put it on in order to ask about its nearly placing him in Slytherin. The hat's voice in his ear seemed to already know his question and said "… you would have done well in Slytherin." He immediately yanked it off and said "you're wrong," but was startled by some gagging noise behind him. Turning, he saw an ugly, scraggly bird on a golden perch, looking like it was about to die. Worried that he might be blamed for killing Dumbledore's pet, he screamed when the bird burst into flames just as the headmaster entered the room. Unexpectedly, through Harry's frantic excuse-making, the headmaster stopped Harry by explaining that the bird was Fawkes, a Phoenix, who burst into flames when it was time to die and was resurrected from the ashes as it was now doing. Normally, Dumbledore said, they are beautiful red and gold, can carry immensely heavy loads, are highly faithful pets and have tears with healing powers. Hagrid burst through the door, with his dead chicken, franticly testifying that "it couldn't have been Harry's fault." Dumbledore had to calm Hagrid down too, by explaining that he knew it wasn't Harry who had petrified Justin and Nick. That surprised Harry, but he was still startled when Dumbledore said, "I must ask you… is there anything you would like to tell me." Harry thought of Malfoy shouting "you'll be next mudbloods," speaking Parseltongue, Polyjuice potion stewing in Myrtle's bathroom, hearing voices no one else could hear, the rumors, that he might be related to Salazar Slytherin… then just said… "No, can't think of anything."
By Christmas nearly everyone had decided to go home after all… except Malfoy and his buddies and Harry, Hermione and the Weasley's, who's parents were in Egypt with Bill. Fred and George had been comically trying to defuse the tension by jumping out at people and grandly announcing "seriously evil wizard coming" as Harry walked through the halls. Harry sort of welcomed the lightheartedness, but Ginny was having nightmares and Percy was threatening to tattle to their mother, again. Christmas day, Hermione ran into Harry's bedroom (despite being a girl) and announced that the potion was ready. After dinner she told them her plan, which was: to trick Crabbe and Goyle into eating some chocolate cake laced with sleeping potion, stuff them into a closet and take some of their hair for the potion. The boys were surprised when it actually worked and they found Hermione in the bathroom with a hair of Millicent Bulstrode's, which she had retrieved from her robe while they were wrestling. They each took a glass of the thick, mud-like, potion and dropped in their respective hairs. Bulstrode's hissed and frothed before turning sick yellow. Goyle's turned booger-like khaki and Crabbe's a dark, murky brown. After separating into different stalls, they drank their potions which would transform them for one hour-only. Hermione refused to come out of her stall and told the boys to go on without her. They did, and realized that they had no idea where the Slytherin common room was located.
Heading down the stairs toward the dungeons (the direction the Slytherin's always came from, at breakfast time) they ran across Percy coming out of an empty room and Ron demanded to know why he was down there. Percy, looking abashed, told "Crabbe" that he was a prefect and it was "none of your business." Malfoy appeared and took them deeper into the corridor's, then gave the password (pure-blood) in front of a stone wall. A doorway appeared leading into a long, low, underground room with stone walls, carved mantelpiece, high-backed chairs and round, green, lamps hanging on chains the Slytherin common room. Malfoy left them for a minute, then returned with a copy of the Daily Prophet to show them an article. "Arthur Weasley," it said, had been fined fifty Galleons "for bewitching a Muggle car." Lucius Malfoy, it went on to say, had, in his typical hateful manner, maligned and insulted him calling for his resignation and the scrapping of "his ridiculous Muggle protection act." Malfoy thought it was funny, but Ron could barely control his anger. Harry intervened, explaining that "Crabbe" just had a stomachache. Malfoy rambled on about Dumbledore hushing up the incidents, mocked Colin Creevey and deplored people thinking that "Saint Potter was Slytherin's heir." "I just wish I knew who it was, so I could help them," Malfoy whined, then answered Harry's astonished question with "How many times do I have to tell you? I don't know who is doing it!" He said that his father wouldn't tell him anything about 50 years ago, when the Chamber was opened the last time. It was before his father's time, but last time a Mudblood died and the perpetrator was caught and expelled to Azkaban. He hoped that it was Granger this time, he said, but his father had ordered him to keep out of it and not get involved. Just as the boy's hour was about up, Malfoy confided that his father's house had been raided last week "But they didn't find the Dark stuff in our secret chamber under the drawing-room floor." Harry and Ron had to make a hasty retreat because they saw that the potion was wearing off. While running back up the hall, Ron commented that, even though they still didn't know who the heir was, he was going to write his father about the Malfoy's secret chamber. When they arrived at Myrtle's bathroom, all back to their normal selves, they found that Hermione was still refusing to come out of her stall. Moaning Myrtle floated out and gleefully commented "it's awful!" Hermione's hair turned out NOT to be Millicent at all, but her cat. Because the potion wasn't meant for non-humans, Hermione still had dark fur, yellow eyes, pointy ears and a tail. "You'll be teased something dreadful," Myrtle said happily, as the boys took Hermione up to see Madame Pomfrey.
- Tinkerer's Delight: A US colloquial term for something which would gladden the heart of a tinkerer. Often referring to a room cluttered with interesting things to take apart, and put together again with the intent of learning how they work.Polyjuice color: Yet another literary device from JKR a persons Polyjuice potion color. Joining "what you see when you look into the Mirror of Erised" (and there will be others) these little facts are a wonderful technique for conveying more emotional description than simple words alone. The yellow thought to be Millicent, actually turned out to be a cat instead. On the other hand, we get the first glimpse that Crabbe and Goyle, who have here-to-fore been considered pretty much clones, are shown, for the first time, to be different in some way. Pretty much neither of them, however, seem to be appetizing.Anything to say: Harry does have a tendency to exclude adults as allies, possibly due to the self-sufficiency forced upon him at the Dursley's. And, the author does need Harry to make mistakes in order to further the plot line. However it would be remiss not to explain to a younger child reading/hearing the story that here was a chance to remove many burdens from Harry's mind. Often children only think of punishment and not the possible benefit from discussions with adults.
Perhaps Dumbledore's demeanor seems distant to Harry. Ask, 'why did Harry not tell Dumbledore what was bothering him.' 'What would Dumbledore probably have done?' 'Would anything have been different if Harry had told Dumbledore the truth?'