Welcome to the eighth episode of Hedwig and the Owlery. There are only two adventures left in our journey. I will not say “do not weep” for not all tears are an evil. Tonight Hedwig fights dementors with Hermes. You can find the last episode here. And the first one here.
Hedwig and the Owlery
Hedwig grew tired of Dumbledore’s inaction. Wizards and witches were disappearing left and right. Hedwig was determined her pet would not be one of them. She frequently patrolled the grounds, occasionally catching up with a dark wizard or two. They sneaked in regularly but with Hermes help they were dropped far off in the mountains. Whether trolls caught up with or not them they were never sure.
She had not been able to thwart Death Eaters entrance through the Vanishing Cabinet. The other wizards had distracted her and Malfoy had executed his plan to perfection. If only Buckbeak had flogged him harder his third year…. She would not have told him off as she did. In fact, she may have even cheered him on.
Hedwig knew she had to act. “I must go,” she told Hermes who had arrived to be with her earlier that night. “I’ll go with you,” he replied. She wanted to argue. She wanted him to be safe. “No, please, I can’t lose you…” Her amber eyes filled with tears. “It will be all right. Percy told me to look after, Ron.”
They flew out of the owlery toward the castle. Dementors had entered the grounds. Hedwig was not sure how they arrived but felt frightened nonetheless. Did they come from the Vanishing Cabinet too? It seemed unlikely, yet there they were, spreading fear and panic….
She became transfixed and forgot Hermes flew next to her. “It will be okay,” he told her gently. “We will act as each other’s patronus.”
They flew into the heart of the storm without fear. The Dementors were accustomed to the taste of human souls and could not understand what attacked them so viciously. Hedwig ripped the long cloaks from their shoulders as Hermes scratched their gaping face holes. It was agonizing and the wizards below felt nothing of despair.
“We’ve done it, my feathery beauty!” Hermes shouted and embraced Hedwig. She kissed him as she had at the Quidditch pitch. Their beaks and small tongues interlocked in bliss. It was utter and complete perfection. Hedwig did not realize something was wrong until their wings parted….
Hermes was in free-fall. She rushed to catch him with all the poise of a seeker. Had someone hit him with a spell? What dark magic had dementors worked in their last breaths? It couldn’t be real; they had beaten them together. Hedwig caught him before hitting the ground, but only just.
“What happened?” Hedwig asked.
“Someone shot a spell, I don’t know from where…”
“Hermes, are you hurt?” Hedwig could clearly see that he was.
“I’m injured badly. Can you get me to Hagrid?”
“I will,” she said. Hedwig dared not tell him what she already suspected. Flames rose high near the Forbidden Forest.
“Just in case,” Hermes told her as they began flying in the right direction, “I love you.”
“I love you too,” Hedwig replied as her claws gripped him tighter. His eyes closed but she refused to accept it. “Wake up, Hermes. We’re almost to Hagrid’s. Wake up, please!” The flames from the hut already stung her eyes. It was too late. Hagrid fled into the forest as Harry chased Death Eaters. She couldn’t believe her eyes and knew despite her grief she must help the foolish boy. “Stay here, my love,” she said folding his wings over his heart. He looked peaceful in their last moment together. It was hard to leave him and become fierce against her enemies but her intensity did not suffer. Harry claimed to have seen Buckbeak attacking Severus Snape, but it had not been the hippogriff.
Hedwig thought of the memories torn away from her as she clawed and pecked Snape’s greasy hair. Whether or not he cast the curse, they were all responsible. Hedwig didn’t care if it made sense. After much blood loss and injury, Severus Snape soon reached the boundary and disapparated with the rest of the Death Eaters.
You can find the next episode here.