"Come on Hermione wake up all ready. We all know that you are faking. Come on girl open up those eyes all ready." Ron said trying to bring anger into his voice as he stared down into the very pale and still face of Hermione Granger.

Madam Pomfrey shook her head gently at the concerned knowing looks of the Professor's Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Snape. She walked away from Hermione's bed and the teenagers who were standing faithfully on guard. She walked towards the Professors'.

"Come on Hermione you promised that you would help me with my O.W.L.S. next year. How can you when you aren't awake." Ginny demanded softly. She slipped her right hand into the slightly older girl's lifeless hand. "I need your brains girl."

Harry didn't say anything. There wasn't anything he could say. He knew that Hermione was lying unconscince in the bed because of him. Sirius had died because of him, the others were hurt because of him.

They had run halfway toward it when Harry saw through the open door two more Death Eaters running across the black room toward them. Veering left he burst instead into a small, dark, cluttered office and slammed the door shut behind them.

"Collo - " begin Hermione, but before she could complete the spell the door had burst open again and the two Death Eaters had come hurtling inside. With a cry of triumph, both yelled "IMPEDIMENTA!"

Harry, Hermione, and Neville were all knocked backward off their feet. Neville was thrown over the desk and disappeared from view, Hermione smashed into a bookcase and was promptly deluged in a cascade of heavy books; the back of Harry's head slammed into the stone wall behind him, tiny lights burst in front of his eyes, and for a moment he was too dizzy and bewildered to react.

"WE GOT HIM!" yelled the Death Easter nearest Harry, "IN AN OFFICE OFF -".

"Silencio!" Cried Hermione, and the man's voice was extinguished. He continued to mouth through the hole in his mask, but no sound came out; he was thrust aside by his fellow.

"Petrificus Totalus!" shouted Harry, as the second Death Eater raised his wand. His arms and legs snapped together and he fell forward, face down onto the rug at Harry's feet, stiff as a board and unable to move at all.

"Well done, Ha-"

But the Death Eater Hermione had just struck dumb made a sudden slashing movement with his wand from which flew a streak of what looked like purple flame. It passed right across Hermione's chest; she a give a tiny "oh!" as though of surprise and than crumpled onto the floor where she remained motionless.


Harry jerked back to the reality of the fact that he may have costed the life of one of his best friends just because of his rashness and his need to save the world without an adult's help. Like a typical normal fifteen year old teenager out to prove that he was all grown up. I'm sorry Hermione. God I wish it were me in that bed fighting for my life not you. It was never apposed to be you fighting to live Hermione. It was always apposed to me.

Harry fell to his knees beside her as Neville crawled rapidly toward her from under the desk, his wand held up in front of him. The Death Eater kicked out hard at Neville's head as he emerged - his foot broke Neville's wand into two and connected with his face - Neville gave a howl of pain and recoiled, clutching his mouth and nose. Harry twisted around, his own wand held high, and saw that the Death Eater had ripped off his mask and was pointing his wand directly at Harry, who recognized the long, pale, twisted face from the Daily Prophet: Antonin Dolohov, the wizard who had murdered the Prewetts.

Dolohov grinned. With his free hand, he pointed from the prophecy still clutched in Harry's hand, to himself, than at Hermione. Though he could no longer speak his meaning could not have been clear: Give me the prophecy, or you get the same as her ...

"Like you won't kill us all the moment I hand over it anyway!" said Harry.

A whine of panic inside his head was preventing him thinking properly. He had one hand on Hermione's shoulder, which was still warm, yet did not dare look at her properly. Don't let her be dead, don't let her be dead, it's my fault if she's dead ... 2

" ... should have awaken by now." Madam Pomfrey whispered softly. She shook her head as she looked back over at where Hermione was still lying still. "I don't understand. The herbs have worked before, 99 of the time and much worse than miss. Granger."

"Potter said that Hermione had silenced Dolohov. Perhaps in revenge Dolohov added another spell onto Hermione that we don't know about." Snape whispered angrily. He had supplied most of the herbs that Pomfrey had tired to awaken Hermione with. He knew that he had failed but dammit if he would allow Hermione Granger to die.

"Whaddever you do, Harry", said Neville fiercely from under the desk, lowering his hands to show a clearly broken nose and blood pouring down his mouth and chin, "don'd gib it to him!"

Then there was a crash outside the door, and Dolohov looked over his shoulder - the baby - headed Death Eater had appeared in the doorway, his head bawling, his great fists still flailing uncontrollably at everything around him.

Harry seized his chance. "PETRIFICUS TOTALUS!"

The spell hit Dolohov before he could block it, and he toppled forward across his comrade, both of them rigid as boards and unable to move an inch.

"Hermione," Harry said at once, shaking her as the baby - headed Death Eater blundered out of sight again. "Hermione, wake up ..."

"Whaddid he do to her?" asked Neville, crawling out from under the desk again to kneel at her other side, blood streaming from his rapidly swelling nose.

"I dunno ..."

Neville groped for Hermione's wrist.

"Dat's a pulse, harry, I'b sure id is ..."

Such powerful wave of relief swept through Harry that for a moment he felt light - headed.

"She's alive?"

"Yea, I dink so ..." 3

Why haven't you awaken yet Hermione. Neville found a pulse and so did the others. They would never have brought you to the hospital wing if they thought you were dead. Don't die Hermione. Please don't die. I need you. I need you to be my voice of reason. I need ... Harry blinked back the tears that threaten to run down his checks. I 'm sorry Hermione. I should have listened to you all along. I should have stopped and went to the adults and allowed them to handle this situation for me. I should never have rushed out to save Sirius with out making TOTALLY sure that Sirius was INDEED in trouble. Than you would be fine and bragging about how well you have down on your O.W.L.S. and Sirius would be alive and being totally down trodden for being kept locked up safe and sound.

" ... ver otter."

Harry was brought back to reality as Neville's words hit him full on. Silver Otter. Hermione's Patronus was a shining silver otter. Hermione why hadn't you called upon your Patronus? That's what Patronus are there for. If your Patronus had been there than you would have been protected.

Professor McGonagall walked over to stand next Harry. "I have contacted her parents about her latest vitals. They will be arriving by the Hogwarts Express in an hours time."

"Why so soon?" Harry finally spoke after hours and hours of silently watching Hermione.

"I had sent the owl six hours ago." McGonagall replied. "As Muggles they had to travel by Hogwarts Express as every wizard and witch in the Muggle world is out searching or hiding from Voldemort. The Grangers only know how to get through to the nine and three quarters platform."

Harry shook his head. "But I thought Muggles weren't allowed at Hogwarts." He murmured.

"This is a special case. Mr. And Mrs. Granger need to be tending to their daughter. Hermione will feel more comfortable knowing that her mother and father are by her side." McGonagall softly said tapping Harry lightly on the right shoulder. "When they get here I want the others to leave but you may stay."

Harry silently nodded.

Professor McGonagall walked out of the hospital wing as she saw Cho Chang becking silently to her. "Yes Cho?"

"I'm sorry to disturb you Professor McGonagall but Peeves said that he absolutely must see you this insist." Cho whispered softly. She couldn't help but look sideways at Harry's right side of face. She knew that Harry was suffering. She wanted to walk in and comfort him and make everything ok. But she knew that SHE wasn't the female comfort Harry wanted right now. Cho knew that only Hermione could comfort Harry now and all Hermione had to do was wake up and Harry's face would be light and smiling once again.

Professor McGonagall sighed deeply through her nose. "What has Peeves done this time. He KNOWS that I'm NOT to be disturbed for any reason at all. Can't another Professor hand this?"

Cho shook her head. "I'm sorry Professor McGonagall, I reminded Peeves that you were with Hermione Granger and would remain by her side until Hermione's parent's arrived. But Peeves is being stubborn and insisted that it is YOU and YOU ALONE that he would tell his important news to. On account that Professor Dumbledore trusts you above all others." She finished with one more look at Harry's downcast head. If only you had let me in Harry. Than I could be in there right now with my arms around you and comforting you. I would be telling you that Hermione would be waking up any moment now. I would be kissing you to make you feel better. But you wouldn't let me in Harry. Now you are alone.

"Well come on than." Professor McGonagall walked ahead of Cho. She hadn't missed the younger girls stare into the hospital wing. McGonagall knew that Cho was more interested in Harry Potter than Hermione Granger at the moment. The only true feeling that Cho Chang had towards Hermione Granger was that of sheer jealously. Nothing more and nothing less. But McGonagall knew that more feelings would come in time to Cho towards Hermione. Feelings that McGonagall wished Cho would never feel towards Hermione.

"Yes. Professor." Cho looked at Harry one last time before following Professor McGonagall down the long silent hall.

Harry didn't feel anything at all. Expect for his deep fear and sadness for Hermione and Sirius. He felt guilt for them and his other friends also.

1 Harry and the order of the Phoenix pages 791-792

2Harry and the order of the Phoenix pages 792 - 793

3 Harry and the order of the Phoenix page 793