Disclaimer: Anything you recognize belongs to the goddess, JKR. Dedicated to my older son because he asked me the question in the first place (and to my younger son, who repeated the question). Takes place while Ron and Harry are in the Forbidden Forest, speaking to Aragog.

Who Would Think?

I suppose it should not surprise me after all these years. Although I never lack for company...still, it would be nice to be noticed..

After all, I have been here a very long time. Perhaps not as long as the Headmaster himself, but a respectable number of years nonetheless.

With the passing of time, I feel the gap between myself and the younger generation grow a little wider. Oh, the lessons do not change very much...there is, after all, very little 'new' magic in the world (except, perhaps in Potions). The students themselves do not change. They come into this school in first year, excited and frightened...inevitably getting lost...I sometimes give them directions.

I like to help where I can.

After all, I have been here quite some time and seen many things.

Including some particularly dark and dangerous times.

I was there when the Chamber of Secrets was opened the first time. I remember it very well. I remember when the assistant Transfiguration professor ran through the hallways, looking for the missing student. I remember her scream of horror when she found her.

And I remember well the sombre group of wizards that bore the child's body away...one hand dangling lifelessly from the white sheet with which they had respectfully covered her.

We had all talked about it...wondering what our fate would be if the school were closed.

Thankfully, that did not happen.

We were safe...until now.

Now, it is happening again. The petrifications. The worried looks on the professors. The fear in the students' eyes.

Just like before.

Mister Potter and Mister Weasley are gone...gone to talk to Hagrid about what happened 50 years ago.

They could have asked me.

I could have helped.

After all, I was there.

But, I do not blame them.

After all...who would think to ask a portrait of these things?