It was a Tuesday.
In fact, it was a crappy Tuesday. One most would prefer to stay cocooned in their bed and drink hot vanilla, or in his case, dig a hole in the ground and die, or take role in a game of Russian Roulette with a loaded gun. He was /that/ embarrassed.
This Tuesday, was by far, his worst ever. Last week Tuesday, started out normal enough, except by lunch that day he had a life ban on Quidditch, his only salvation aside from his music, he was having terrible grade in transfiguration, even lower than Seamus's, and that was saying something. Umbridge was a joke, and he had served more detentions with her than he ever had with Snape. And if carving words on the back of his hand wasn't bad enough, Dumbledore had decided to /surprise/ them all, with a musical festival, merely days before Harry had painfully decided to give up on his love for music.
Now if that wasn't irony biting him in the butt, then Harry didn't know what was. It seemed, that these days, irony and fate had a joint project on ruining his life by every means possible, he had a splitting headache too, and a sore hand from last week where he had punched Malfoy and Pomfrey had refused to heal it, so it would /serve a lesson / for / idiotic teenagers / who deliberately /got into fights / and / hurt themselves/ just for the /fun of it/.
Those were her words, by the way, not his. But still, it stung. Hermione also took it upon herself to lecture both him and Ron, and nagged right after their detention with Snape, his detention with Umbridge, and continued right until dinner, when the headmaster clapped his hands to maintain silence and speak.
"Attention please. Thank you, As you all know by now, my dear students, Hogwarts is a place to express ourselves , to create and to love, and to bloom into your true nature. This school has been the sanctuary for those with true talent, worth and accomplishment for hundreds of years. Now that is why, I am proud to announce Hogwart's first musical event that will take place this year for those who have the talent, the pure magic of this beautiful art. Please note that festivals such as this, not only determines the best, but will increase our house unity, a much needed bond between the students that regretfully has been missing for decades.
I will not take much more of your time, but please notify your head of house if you or your band wish to enter the festival, rehearsal schedules and further information will be up in the common room boards as we speak. Now, tuck in! " the jovial old man clapped his hands, platters of food appeared on the tables, and students applauded.
just like that.
Harry however was too shocked to even move from his uncomfortable half turned half craning position.
His eyes were wide and round and his face went completely blank as Dumbledore made his grand speech.
It left /him/ speechless. Karma had it right alright, just as he thought it couldn't be any worse, something even more catastrophic popped out of nowhere. Damn that old man. He thought numbly.
"Reckon I should play Guitar?" Ron said with his mouth full of chicken pie, Hermione wrinkled her nose at his table manners.
"I think you should swallow first." she then smiled and turned to a flabbergasted Harry.
"What about you? Is it the flute or the piano?" Harry was so peeved that didn't even bother to shush her. Neville and Dean turned to him, looking a little taken back, but in interest.
"Harry plays?" Dean exclaimed incredulously and Ron nodded vigorously, having only seen it once in his life.
"He's brilliant, you just need to see him play with his eyes closed!" he gloated, and Harry snapped out of his stunned stupor. Shut the hell up Ron! He screed inwardly, and waited a few seconds for his mouth to keep up with his brain.
He shook his head rapidly. "What?! No! No, I'm not playing anything! I can't!" he exclaimed, shaking his hands to emphasize his point. There was absolutely no way that he was entering that event. No way. Neville shook his head in confusion and gulped down his pumpkin juice.
"Why not? Ron thinks you're good."
Hermione, the wicked witch of the West, saw her chance to interrupt and smiled like a Cheshire cat.
"He's not just good Neville. He's /brilliant/. He should really enter." she grinned widely, her eyes narrowed into Harry's. The boy glared back at them and shook his head stubbornly. He would not play. Not anymore. The last thing he needed was making a fool of himself in front of the entire school. Imagine that, he thought sarcastically.
"I'm not playing. End of discussion, never want to hear of it again." he ordered firmly and turned back to pile some food on his plate, blatantly ignoring Hermione's subtle nudges to at least consider the option.
Eventually, his wish was respected and none of his friends brought up the festival in his presence. That was the week before Tuesday.
Today was Tuesday, and Harry couldn't be more ashamed and embarrassed of himself than he was now.
Dean and Neville had told /everyone/. And he really meant /everyone/ of his unique talent in music, by lunch half of the school and two teachers already knew that he could play two instruments with closed eyes, and had unabashedly invited him to the participate.
The excited buzz didn't die, no matter how firm Harry tired to say ' No '. He could feel his friends restlessly throwing glances at him, too afraid to out right say it like the others. It was in that moment that Harry regretted playing for them in the first place. It had been two years ago, and he was naive, playing for them and telling them about George. It was a mistake. He knew that the moment Ron dared him to really prove that he can play while blindfolded.
But it wasn't like he had any other options either. He wanted to talk, needed to let it all out, the small ball of sadness that was etched in his chest after George died. Never telling him what he had meant to say. Harry did not remember grieving for George other than the time he found his first letter. He put it all aside. The flute, his notes, George's blue notebook. All of them safely packed away in his trunk, never meant to be seem again.
And now, there was this damn festival. He knew exactly what George would say though.
"Don't slack off lad, you know you want to play. Don't fool yourself and others." he could even smell the musk and cigarette too.
Shut up. He snapped back.
George Lightwood had no right to scold him in his grave, this was Harry's life, and George, or whatever his name really was, had no place in it anymore.
Maybe that was the reason for his wariness. He had always thought of the man of George Lightwood. After finding that letter, and numerous others... Harry got more curious, he looked for the man's name everywhere, convinced that George wanted him to see that letter. But that was the problem. He never found anyone, alive or deceased, by the name of 'George Lightwood', let alone a blind one at that.
He didn't even found the surname Lightwood in the war causalities, or anywhere really...
He figured, maybe the man was a squib, and so looked for registered squibs for nearly two years. The only person by the same name had been dead for fifty years. The George Lightwood he had found was found dead in a mine while working. There was even a body to prove.
After their escapade with polyjuice potion, Harry wondered whether the man was an imposter, but couldn't remember George drinking anything suspicion every hour in his presence, so he crossed that one out too.
He finally gave up, never thinking of asking Dumbledore or Figg, who also turned out to be a squib. He just tried to forget about his life before Hogwarts, and wave off his mentor's annoying voice in his head, ordering him around. Which he brushed off and ignored as much as he could.
"Coward." he knew George would say, and pursed his lips.
He looked at his frustrated friends, and grimaced.
They had every right to be afraid though, Harry was beyond pissed, and with this year's tension and his current moody attitude, he was like a exploding volcano. Ready to blow on them any second.
Sighing he went back to his essay, avoiding eye contact at all costs.
"Detention Potter! No running in the halls." the toad like teacher cried out in triumph, and walked up to him. Harry paused, his mouth closing with a sharp snap, and his knuckles just itching to punch something else. He was running away from /her/, so he wouldn't have to bear another week of Detention with the cow.
"Degree number 49, clearly states that actions such as running, skipping, jogging and etc in the hallways, staircases and classes is illegal Mr. Potter. Detention for your disobedience." she giggled and straightened the pink bow on her head, smirking at the crowd gathering around the two. Harry cursed inwardly.
"... And degree number 105 is precisely against student gathering and trafficking, again, in the hallways, staircases, and etc. It seemed you just bought yourself another week worth of detention Potter. " she said in her annoyingly girly voice and walked away, her huge backside swaying to left and right with each forceful step in her high heels.
"I hate her. I really do." Harry declared when she was out of earshot, ignoring Hermione's sympathetic comment.
"That cow! What a complete...!" Ron closed his mouth abruptly when Hemrione glared, and huffed. Harry shook his head and trailed after the two, anger flooding his head, and his eyes seeing red.
That miserable hag! She just loved to watch him squirm, she loved poking him and pushing his buttons to the brim. So he would lash out, and she would have more excuses to give him detention and then watch him carve words in his own hand. Harry was surprised the woman wasn't a deatheater, although, he didn't think even Voldemort would want a pink blasted toad like her.
"....And I think this is the reason why you should participate in the festival Harry, that woman is insufferable! You have to show her that you won't... "
Harry listened to her ranting, still fuming over the undeserved detentions he had received earlier.
Hermione was right, to some extent. Umbridge couldn't ban him from playing flute, or playing at all. Quidditch was one thing, but this was more personal, and it made him feel happy... He shook his head savagely.
Not happening Potter. Get used to it. He toughened up and tried his hardest to not think about his hands on the sleek back flute, fingers bending gracefully, and his breath flowing out of the instrument, and his body buzzing with delight...
He dug his nails in the palm of his hand, and took a deep breath. He needed to get rid of that flute. And soon.
"Hey Ron, fancy a game of chess?"
Ron shrugged with a grimace, a guitar case in his hand. "Sorry mate, I'm off to rehearsal. You sure you're not coming?"
Oh, Harry was more than sure that he wasn't going with Ron. "No thanks, I just play with Hermione. Have fun though." Ron paused by the portrait, looking thoroughly uncomfortable.
"Um...Mate? She's already there too. At the rehearsal." Harry gaped, his mind going bank at the utter injustice.
Harry cursed, fighting off the temptation. It was just his luck though, what were the odds that /both/ of his friends wanted to play some stupid instrument in a stupid festival? He was just agitated and was being unfair, Harry knew that... But the pain of watching them gush over their talent, watch them play and show off to other, filled his chest with longing to do the same.
His efforts to forget about the flute, and stop thinking about playing the grand black piano in the great hall seemed futile as days passed and the upcoming Tuesday was coming closer.
You can't play them anyway, he tried to convince himself. It had been years since he had laid hands on a piano or touched his flute willingly with the purpose of using it, he would just make a fool of himself anyway. It seemed more concerning now, that he couldn't actually remember some of the basic, but tricky stuff George had taught him. But he didn't let himself mull over it. He was not going to participate and hence had no worries.
His act of self denial, lasted about two days after the rehearsals, and he was physically sick with anticipation and disgust. He felt like an addict in withdrawal, he ached every time he heard some student playing something down in the common room, or see Ron practice on his beaten up Guitar. His fingers itched to get on something, anything, to play with.
It got to a point that he even day dreamed about playing as he was in detention with Umbridge, drumming his fingers rhythmically on the doomed parchment as he carved on the other one with the quill, the toad positively bristled as she caught him and other students goofing around and happy again, thus confirming Harry's earlier suspicions of her being a cruel hag.
Even if the satisfaction of seeing her squirm was priceless, Harry was not willing to give it a chance, he was stubborn enough, and if he could last till Tuesday evening, which was only three days away, then things could go back to normal, and he could worry about real problems.
Like Voldemort, deatheaters, strange dreams, war and misery, world hunger... Anything that mattered more than that stupid sound ringing in his ears. It sang to him, whispered in his ears whenever he was in classes and eating, it called to him to pick up his flute, to play something, anything...
But Harry fought back ruthlessly. He would /not/ relent.
"You know you want it kid. Just let it flow." he heard George say in his dreams, and he couldn't. He would not think back to the days where he was happy and world was simple. Where it was only him and George, when the beatings from uncle Vernon didn't matter as much, or when his fingers played on the piano keys, George's commanding voice, firmly teaching him how to be better, how to be himself and let the magic happen.
"Did you hear Harry? They say Snape is playing too!" Harry's head snapped to the conversation and he shook his head.
Dean bobbed his head and others joined in. "Heard it today at the rehearsal. Snape's gonna play the closing! Can you imagine /him/ of all people?!"
Harry couldn't, but shook his head anyway. "What is he playing?"
How can he even play?! Harry had never considered Snape a musician. It felt wrong, to imagine the greasy bat as one though. Musicians were gentle, delicate with fragile hearts and calm behavior. And if Harry had been lucid enough in the man's classes, he would know that Snape was /none/ of those. If anything the man was downright cruel, arrogant, stuck up and too much obsessed with potions to play anything.
It just seemed ridiculous, like saying that Sprout killed small animals in her free time, it was that unbelievable and unreal.
"He's playing piano. I could get that much. It's really bullocks isn't it?!"
"Bloody hell." Ron cursed and Nevile agreed while he gulped in fear.
Harry rolled his eyes. Figures.
Out of all of the instruments the man could play, it had to be the piano, even the image of the bristling man behind something so grand and delicate ate at his nerves and he resisted the argue to gape at the man sitting with other teachers just a few feet away.
Harry shook his head. It wasn't just meant to be.
Later that night, Harry went through his trunk, feeling as he was in a trance, he rummaged the trunk for his notes, with determination and a ting of smugness, although he had no idea what for.
Everyone was already asleep, and snores could be heard throughout the boy's dormitory, Harry had just woken up from another George induced dream. It was that night again, the night that George was murdered, and he looked frantic.
Harry was behind the piano, as usual with closed eyes and his fingers spread out on the keys, his nose filled with smoke and his ears full of sounds and different tunes. He just played for a while, flexed his fingers, and warmed up his focus, he slowly built his way up to the complicated tunes, but kept a firm pace and discipline on his posture.
George didn't say anything, Harry wanted to open his eyes and snap at the man for smoking so much in one day, but he felt miles away, he felt deeply detached from the room and from his body and all he could hear was the sound of the keys, as he pushed them down, as his fingers skimmed over them, and as smoke filled his lungs.
"Prove it to him. Show him. You can do it, I see it now boy. Show him." his mentor's words swirled around his brain like the smoke, and Harry woke up panting for breath, his eyes wide and his heart frantic for a shred of sound, of a familiar tune.
Now, here he was, kneeling in front of his trunk and looking thorough his possessions in the dark, too spooked to find his wand and cast a lumos.
Harry found the back shiny flute, originally he was looking for his notes but was mesmerized by the instrument just laid out before him. Itching for him to play, finely tuned, and ready for use. Harry fought back harder, he thrust the flute back in his trunk and slammed it shut.
He promised himself that he would never play again, and he wouldn't. That's final.
With a disturbed mind and aching limbs Harry got back in his bed. Tossing and turning all night.
The hall applauded, the students were in the edge of their seats, some cheering for more, and some still admiring the new decor. Harry was the latter. He put every effort in his being to focus on the Hall instead of the music blasting all around him.
He blurred the words, and just concentrated on the small bright spot /behind/ the stage, his eyes squinted in the Hall's darkened light and rows of seats placed circularly around the one stage in the middle. No tables could be found and the ceiling was always a starry night, adding additional beauty to the room.
Harry noticed everything, even though he tried not to, he could distinguish every sound, every instrument with closed or glazed over eyes, courtesy of his mentor.
He had this childish usage to cover his eyes and start singing so he wouldn't hear others singing and playing. Or reach in his robe and take out his own flute. Harry squirmed guiltily. He couldn't just take his eyes off the thing all morning and had brought it along, hidden under his shirt just like the old days. He just hoped that no one would go for classic tonight.
Much to his displeasure, It seemed like nearly all of the students and bands had gone with the classic tide, every performance had a classical instrument to it, now be it piano or violin or a damn trumpet. Harry was having a hard time sitting through it while doing nothing.
Why hadn't anyone thought of playing rock?! Or jazz?! Or something aside from Harry's torture instruments?! he would prefer to do anything else, even scrub the toilets clean if that bought him his way out of the festival.
Sadly it didn't. The doors were locked, Umbridge and Snape chaperoned between the seats, her toad like eyes glaring and Snape's face fixed in a sneer whenever his eyes caught Harry's. There was no escape.
Around the time Ron and his buddies were up the stage, Harry simply resigned himself to his fate and crossed his arms, listening to the piece mainly for Ron and for his own curious mind.
They weren't that bad, Harry could admit, they even had a Ravenclaw drummer, so it was a nice change from the classical tide, Hermione surprisingly could play the tambourine rather well, and Harry silently cheered for her.
What pissed him off, through the whole play, was not the song, and rather the block who was playing the piano, Harry didn't know why, but everything about the guy irked him, the way he punched the keys as if they were made of metal with his meaty fingers, and his face screwed in a frown. Or the way the sounds came out all wrong as the boy played, nothing was in tune, in Harry's opinion, and the boy looked like he was not enjoying himself at all.
Harry narrowed his eyes. How could someone not appreciate something as blessed as a piano? Something so peaceful and beautiful, and that boy made it out like it was nothing but a heap of rubbish. He seethed in his seat quietly, his mouth curled in a Snape worthy sneer and his arms crossed in front of him defensively.
Finally his torture was coming to its end, as Ron's band was second to last, and the last was Snape. He took a deep breath and braced himself, forcefully congratulating his friends as they joined him in their seats.
"How you're holding up?"
"Fine." Harry seethed, gazing ahead.
Ron shook his,head in confusion."You don't look fine to.." Hermione interrupted him swiftly.
"What you think? Were we good?"
Harry growled, narrowing his eyes. "It was good enough."
In the dark, he couldn't quite make out the expressions on their faces, so just started ahead, too irritated and pissed off to compliment them.
"Are you alright?" Hermione's voice broke through the Slytherin's deafening applaud.
Harry only pursed his lips in response, glaring as Snape made his way to the front of the stage and sat down behind the grand black piano. Beautifully set in the middle, and shined merrily, slick and soft.
"Go on Harry, play. Close your eyes and let the magic happen." George's voice was clear and strict, and for a second Harry genuinely thought the man was there.
He shook his head, shaking off the goosebumps on his arms. He only had to sit through this one and then he was free. He thought, please let this Tuesday end already. Please. He pleaded, ignoring Snape and staring at the piano.
"Play." He itched to snap out loud and tell the man to sod off, this was his life, and he would rule it. If he didn't want to play then he wouldn't.
He was so engrossed in his own internal conflicts that he completely missed Dumbledore's speech, by the time he paid attention the man had started playing.
His jaw was set in a firm line, and his hands pressed the cold flute in his warm flesh, Harry narrowed his eyes and his fists clenched. Snape was playing and he wasn't. Snape was behind that piano and he wasn't. It infuriated him, to the point that his leg was bouncing and his face flushed.
Snape certainly knew how to play, Harry gave him that, the piece was familiar to Harry, though he couldn't place it. Snape 's performance wasn't flawless, it sounded fluent, but it was incomplete. Harry felt like something lacked, in fact he was so mesmerized by that fact that he almost didn't hear Ron's grumbling.
"Bloody hell!" the red head exclaimed, and Hermione nodded as well.
Harry jerked his face towards his friends and sneered. "Something's missing." he muttered.
His friends shook their heads, having not heard their friend clearly.
"What?" Hermione asked, raising an eyebrow.
He didn't know why he did what he did next. Maybe it was a reflex, maybe the imperfect tone was what got to him, or merely because he was agitated and jealous. But surely the day had a hand in it.
This Tuesday couldn't possibly get worst and it did.
Harry snapped his jaw and snapped loudly. "It's missing something!"
The Hall instantly went silent and Snape paused, his glare immediately on the boy who lived. Harry shark in his seat, and gulped, feeling uncomfortable as suddenly all of the eyes were on him. Apparently he had said it way louder than he meant to.
He blushed furiously, and looked down on his lap. Horrified with himself, the boy covered his face in indignation and shame.
The Hall remained silent for at least ten seconds before Umbridge cleared her throat, and Snape looked at her blankly. Dumbledore stayed silent.
"If you will Professor." Snape's slick voice cut through , and made Harry look up in confusion. Snape's sneer could be seen on the second row, and Harry swore inwardly.
Umbridge sputtered, but did not intervened again.
"Did you have something to add Mr. Potter?" Harry numbly shook his head, wondering why the man couldn't just go on with his show.
"Are you sure Potter? I must have been wrong but it seemed like you deemed yourself a professional in the..."
"The boy has a tongue Minerva. Well Potter? What am I 'missing'?" Harry glared as the man mocked him and some laughed along.
"Nothing." he whispered and stood.
"I didn't hear you Potter, what profession do you have in this field to deem my performance incomplete?" the man spat in anger.
Harry's insides melted in humiliation as the students sneered and laughed again. He bit his lip.
'tell them, you idiot! Show him! Prove that you can play!' Harry gulped down the bulge in his throat and repeated.
Sounds of protest came from the teachers, as they admonished Snape and the Slytherins jeered at him with disgust.
"Ignore his lies Severus. It isn't the first time the boy sees himself above authority."
Umbridge declared in her girly voice and scoffed. Unable to take it anymore, Harry weaved his way through the seats quickly, completely forgetting that they were locked.
"He can play with closed eyes!" a voice shouted out just as he was at the door. Harry closed his eyes in shame as other students agreed, some having heard the gossips concerning his musical abilities.
"And he can play the flute."
This how he got here. To this moment of shame.
It was a Tuesday.
In fact, it was a crappy Tuesday. One most would prefer to stay cocooned in their bed and drink hot vanilla, or in his case, dig a hole in the ground and die, or take role in a game of Russian Roulette with a loaded gun. He was /that/ embarrassed.
Thankfully, or rather unfortunately the headmaster interrupted the chaos and stood, his arms up in a gesture to calm everyone.
"Silence! Everyone remain in their seats! Mr. Potter if you would also return to your seat please." in a walk of shame, Harry slowly turned, feeling like it was forth year all over again. All of them muttering, stage whispering, accusing him of being a fake. Of lying.
Faces passed by as he quickly made his way to the second row, some jeering, some hopeful and some angry on his behalf. Harry ignored all, and just returned to his seat, tuning out Dumbledore's speech as he called everyone down.
"Harry..." Hermione's apologize was interrupted as the toad cleared her throat the moment Dumbledore shut his mouth.
"Detention Mr. Potter with..." again the music was disrupted, Snape glared at him coldly.
"I have a proposal Dolores, he is my student after all." the other Professors looked ready to step in but Dumbledore stopped them all, looking at Harry with a knowing look and twinkle in his eyes.
"What is that Severus?" she asked in her high pitched voice, smoothing her pink skirt. Snape flexed his wrists, never taking his eyes off him.
Harry could already feel the cold sweat bead on his forehead as the woman sweetly smiled in return.
His professor sneered. "Let him prove himself. Come up here Potter. Show us your real self." everyone could here the mock in the man's voice, but no one was more angry and humiliated as Harry was. Done with his politeness, Harry ignored his friends and stood again, his hands balled in fists as he glared back at Snape.
"What are you waiting for Potter? Come and show me the flaw." Harry heard the voices as if he was under water.
Stealthy he shed his robes and reached under his shirt, ignoring the cries of surprise and dumbstruck faces, he only watched Snape's taken back expression before fishing out the flute and holding it out in his hands.
"Potter..." the smirk was gone, and Snape had narrowed his eyes. Harry glared back and walked to the podium, not noticing the abysmal state of his over grown clothes, Harry closed his eyes, walking in a trance.
He was doing it. In the most horribly and dramatic way he could imagine, George would be so ashamed of him right now.
He brushed off the shame and humiliation and brought the flute to his lips, the flesh ghosted over the slick black surface and Harry never had felt so nostalgic as he was feeling now.
His fingers closed on the holes, the base of his fingers caressing the smooth surface, his breath tuned out of the black flute, just as he liked it, flawless. He never took many breaks or pauses to breath while playing, it was what made it iconic, George had told him years ago,Back then, Harry never thought of it, thinking that it was normal, and he just had good lungs as George had suggested, but over the years, as he grew, as he watched others playing the instrument, he knew that he wasn't normal, and neither was his playing.
He couldn't care that Hall was in stunned silence, that Snape was not playing and even Umbridge had shut up. He must have looked ridiculous, clad in Dudley's hideous shirt and a pair of worn out jeans, but he didn't let it get to him. Not again.
Even though his legs were trembling, and his insides were quinsy, his hands remained focused and unwavering. Hundreds of eyes ogled him with amazement and awe, student and teacher alike, all aside Snape were staring at him. It always made him nervous, being the chosen one and the always the center of attention in every sort of crowd, he wasn't uncomfortable at all, his closed eyes were probably one of the facts, but he couldn't care.
He hadn't let himself indulge in music for so long, that he was slowly becoming undone, it seemed like the more he played the more at ease he felt, his head light from the lack of breath and his legs trembled again, but Harry fought over, he heard George praising him, and he smiled.
He didn't know when, but at one point the silence broke and the family sound of piano joined his flute, they were the same song, full of ups and downs and rhythm, it never quite sounded good on solitary piano, he could imagine George say.
It always needs a back up, always paired up with another instruments. That's what makes it full and majestic.
Harry took a deep breath through his nose and blew in the flute as swiftly as he could, he wasn't in the Great Hall anymore, he was all by himself, playing in the dark, George was playing the piano, not Snape, they were in tune, so much so, that the sound almost wasn't distinguishable.
The song eventually ended and Harry dared to open his eyes seconds before the crowd /roared/. The applaud seemed so loud that Harry thought that he had gone deaf, he looked around, first at the teachers, who ever cheering just as loudly with Umbridge sputtering.
And dumbledore smiled. With the same twinkle and knowing look. In an instant, Harry knew that the man knew.
His took big gulps of breath, feeling as if he was being suffocated, as distracted as he was, he nearly didn't notice the potion master looming over him.
"Potter." the man snapped and Harry turned tiredly, his hand rubbing his chest.
"Professor." here it comes. He prepared himself for the lash out, with acceptance and a ting of disappointment.
Snape's sneer fell, and the man was completely stoic. "No detention."
Harry's eyes bulged and the Hall cheered like mad, Snape merely looked around in disgust before turning dramatically, his robes billowing as he stalked to the teacher's table.
He didn't know who was more shocked. Himself or Umbridge, or the Gryffindors, and he felt like crying. Only if George was here to see. That's what he thought about as his friends ruffled him up, patting him on the shoulder and hugging him.
"You've done good. I was right wasn't I lad? Music is magic."
It was the last whisper from his first mentor. It felt like a farewell, and after years of pent up grief Harry felt alive again, swarming in the crowd, flute in hand.
Music was magic.