Harry awakened the following morning safely encircled in the arms of his lovers. Harry was worried about whether he had done the right thing the previous night but decided that the Weasley's and Mrs Figg all deserved a second chance. He yawned as quietly as he could before quietly and carefully getting out of bed so as not to wake his partners. When he had finished with his shower he woke Sirius and Remus who too prepared for the day and the threesome left 20 minutes later to meet the rest of the Hogwarts Inner Circle. Hermione once more accosted when they reached the hall Harry.
"Harry, Professor Dumbledore told me that I am to be with you at all times to protect you! He also said that you are to tell him everything that happened over the summer."
"I think you'll find Miss Granger that I already have 'bodyguards' and even so I am perfectly capable of looking after myself. Ah Ron, Draco, there you are, shall we go to breakfast?" Harry asked and strode off with his brother and friend. Hermione followed and tried to sit next to Harry at breakfast when Draco left them but Neville had already sat in the spare seat. McGonagall brought around the timetables and Harry smiled to see he had Potions with Severus first, followed by Defence with his mum and dad, then Charms with Professor Flitwick and then, unfortunately for him, Transfiguration with McGonagall. The friends all smiled at each other before making there way to potions where Hermione tried once again to sit with Harry but was beaten to it by Daphne and Theo Nott.
"Now class, today we will be making draught of the living death. Now who can tell me what the main ingredient in this potion is? Ah Mr Potter how about you?"
"Powdered root of Asphodel Professor Snape!"
"Excellent Harry, 10 points to Gryffindor." Severus said and smiled. The class passed fairly uneventfully and Harry got full marks and a further 15 points for his perfect potion. The class then made their way to Defence Against the Dark Arts where Ron and Draco once again thwarted Hermione in her attempt to sit next to Harry.
"Good Morning class! Now, it will be highly confusing for you to call both myself and my husband Professor Potter so may I suggest that you call me Professor Evans instead?" Lily said cheerily and the class nodded. "Good now today we will be studying Patronuses, now who can tell me what a Patronus is? Ah Miss Greengrass?"
"Yes Professor Evans. A Patronus is the only way one can fight a dementor. It is created out of happy thoughts, the happiest one you can find, and it drives the vile creatures back."
"Well done Miss Greengrass. Now I believe you can create a Patronus Mr Potter?" Lily asked of her son but Hermione pushed past Harry as he attempted to stand up and walked to the front.
"I can as well Professor and it would be far fairer to let someone who isn't your son have an opportunity to earn points wouldn't you say? EXPECTO PATRONUM!" However, unlike during the DA the previous year, Hermione couldn't even produce a whisp.
"Yes thank you Miss Granger however you seem to lack the ability. That's 10 points from Gryffindor for speaking out of turn and a further 10 points for your arrogance now return to your seat. Harry?" James spoke levelly but with anger in his voice. Harry walked up to the front as he was asked and produced his beautiful stag Patronus that brought tears of pride to his parents' eyes.
"Thank you Mr Potter, take 30 points for Gryffindor for that magnificent Patronus now return to your seat." James said. The rest of the class was spent attempting the Patronus curse. Hermione was getting angrier and angrier at her inability to produce the Patronus and also her inability to spy on Harry anymore. The class ended and they made their way to lunch and then charms where Harry sat next to Vince and Millie.
"Good afternoon class! This afternoon we will be studying the Portkey Charm. Now who can tell me about it? Mr Weasley?"
"The charm creates a Portkey which transports a person from one place to another."
"Thank you Mr Weasley, that 10 points to Gryffindor for that informative answer. Now who wishes to attempt it? The charm is Porteo followed by the destination. We'll just go to the other side of the room okay? How about you Mr Potter?" Flitwick asked and came to stand by Harry where he also whispered to his student to meet him in the classroom the following morning before breakfast.
"Yes Professor. Porteo Professor Flitwick's Desk Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Well the charm worked, shall I try the Portkey?" Harry asked and Flitwick nodded. Harry took the Portkey and tapped it, appearing seconds later at Flitwick's desk.
"Wonderful Harry! You realised that you had to be especially precise about the destination or you could have been transported to the desk in my study at home. Take 20 points for Gryffindor!" Flitwick said and Harry spent the rest of the lesson helping his friends to perform the charm. Hermione was even angrier now because, unlike most of the class, she had failed to perform the charm and had even more homework than the rest of the class. Oh well, she thought smugly to herself, its Transfiguration next and Harry has no ability in that class. How wrong she was soon to be proven.
"Good Afternoon class, this afternoon we will be practicing turning parts of our bodies into animals. This is done via wandless magic. The incantation is animago, then the body part, transformo. Make sure you always keep a picture of the animal you want whilst you attempt this." As Harry was already an Animagus this lesson was insanely easy for him. Within seconds his arm was a panther paw.
"Well done Mr Potter! May I enquire how you have managed such a difficult task so easily?" McGonagall asked sceptically, thinking Harry had cheated and used his wand.
"Certainly Professor." Harry said and transformed into Shadow, his gorgeous, slick, Black Panther form. The classroom, bar the Hogwarts Inner Circle, was speechless. McGonagall could only stare at the sight of the boy who lived as a panther. She had not thought him good enough at transfiguration to ever become an animagus.
"R-Right Mr Potter, please could you transform back? Now that's 50 points to Gryffindor for such a perfect transformation but I'm afraid I have to take them away because you haven't registered your form.
"How do you know I haven't Professor? Because I have, as these forms will prove!" Harry said and produced the forms. McGonagall was forced to eat her words and return the points before returning to the lesson. Harry again spent the lesson helping the class with the spell. He even tried to help Hermione but she wouldn't accept his help and pushed him away with such force that Ron had to catch him. Harry made no confrontation out of his former friend's action but ignored her whenever he went past that corner of the room whilst helping the other students. By the end of the lesson, the only person who had not transformed as much as a finger was Hermione but Harry failed to find any sympathy for her. The Hogwarts Inner Circle went to dinner but was unable to stop Hermione sitting next to Harry. Harry ignored her entirely and talked only to Ginny and Lavender who were sitting next to and opposite him respectively. That was until Hermione hit him hard around the head. The blow was so hard that Harry's head was forced down because of it and Harry banged his head on the table. He was seeing stars but she continued her vicious attack by slapping him hard enough to leave a red mark on his face.
"That's what you get for ignoring me and bettering me all day Harry James Potter!" She screamed and went for him with her nails but was yanked back hard by Neville and Ron. Sirius ran over to Harry whilst Severus was holding Remus back. James and Lily walked over to their son with absolutely furious looks on their faces. Once Sirius was sure Harry was all right he turned around and slapped Hermione hard around the face.
"Perhaps that will knock some sense into you Hermione Jane Granger. That's 100 points from Gryffindor and 3 months detention with Professor Snape and Mr Filch now get out of my sight before I decide to do anything worse!" Sirius shouted and Hermione ran crying out of the hall. As soon as she was gone Severus let Remus go and the werewolf hastened over to his mates and picked Harry up. Remus completely ignored Dumbledore when he ordered him to put Harry down as, as far as he could see, the boy in question was perfectly all right and walked out of the Great Hall. He carefully carried his young love to their bedroom where Harry quickly fell asleep joined a short while later by his fiancées. The threesome however, did not sleep peacefully because they were all terribly worried about what would come the following morning.
A.N. I know I haven't updated in forever but I just couldn't get my ideas for this chapter onto paper. I'm still not sure about it but I hope you enjoy it. I know some of you won't like the way Hermione is portrayed but I often see her as the weak, jealous part of the trio, especially when classes and the boys' academic abilities are concerned, although JK Rowling appears to disagree.