To friendship! To generosity! To ten Galleons a hair!
All Harry wanted was a memory, but in the process he made friends of two very different persons. Friendfic. Characters belong to Rowling.
Horace hesitantly raised his head from the table and tried to focus. Hagrid's hut was blurry and there was something missing, even if he couldn't put his finger on it. Come to think of it he couldn't put his finger on anything, mostly due to his hand being buried under the gigantic arm of his gigantic companion, who was snoring soundly. Absentmindedly reflecting over this Horace tried to get some overview of the situation. It was probably still night, he concluded from the lack of light, but it still felt like he had slept for awhile. He felt rather dizzy. Suddenly he realized what was missing.
"Needa 'nother drink," he mumbled and Hagrid woke up with a snort.
"Yeah?" he asked hopefully, trying to find his way out from his beard. Horace hand was freed and he begun to inquiringly shake the bottles of the table. They were empty.
"Nope, 's nothing," he said. Hagrid looked like he was going to cry.
"Nothing't all?" he sobbed. Horace sadly shook his head, but then he felt something in his pocket. A bottle! He produced it, and to his delight it was full.
"Look!" He cried. "Here's something t'drink." Eagerly he opened the bottle and moved it to his mouth, but he interrupted himself with a sour look on his face.
"Nah... doesn't smell good. 's spoiled."
"Giv' to me," Hagrid demanded and took the bottle from the other man. He sniffed it and a puzzled look came over him.
"Hey, 's smells spidery. Like Aragog." And he started to cry. "Poor Aragog." Horace patted him on his hand, not reaching up to the shoulder.
"There, there. He died'n peace, af'er all." A thought struck him. "Yeah, I r'mber. It's poison'n the bottle. I took some't the funeral. Maybe better shouldn't drink it." Hagrid stared at him with his eyes filled by tears.
"Yea did, did yea?" He started to cry again. "That's the most beautiful thing anyone ever did for ol' Aragog."
Carefully Horace put the bottle back to his pocket and went back to pat Hagrid on his hand, letting the giant cry. Hagrid did so a little while more, but then he produced a big, spotty hanky and blow his nose soundly. He sighed.
"That's life, isn't? You live, you die, and then all that is left of you is inna bottle." Suddenly his face lit up.
"Ah! Yeh wait!" And watched by the still quite dizzy Horace he unsteadily stood up and tried to open a closet, managing on his third attempt. Triumphantly he produced a small keg.
"Goblin beer," he said. "Best kind 'ere is." Horace cleared way for the keg on the table by sweeping down the bottles on the floor. He found two moderately clean mugs and put them under the keg. He and Hagrid took a deep gulp each.
"Good stuff," he mumbled happily, but then a thought struck him. "Where's Potter anyway?"
"Ah! He is here," Hagrid said from his mug, which was already refilled once, and indicated the chair where Harry had been sitting. Horace eyed it thoughtfully, emptying his mug and giving it to Hagrid for refilling.
"Nah..." he said hesitantly. "He isn't there." Hagrid smiled and tapped his nose.
"That's the trick, yeh know. He's invisible. Meanin' that we can't see him." Horace took another sip and thought it over. He couldn't see anything wrong with that explanation.
"Clever that," he said and then added. "I gotta pee."
"So do I," Hagrid bellowed and tried to stand up. He made it in the third attempt.
Unsteadily they helped each other to get out through the door to the moonlit night. There was a small confusion when they both tried to go separate ways around the hut, helping the other to go their own way, but it was easily resolved as Hagrid simply lifted Horace and carried him. They passed Argog's grave and nodded to him, then they stood at the edge of the forbidden forest, conducting the business they were there for.
"Yeh know..." Hagrid muttered. "We never finished that song."
"Nah... can't remember we did anyway."
"Well... maybe Harry finished it then."
"Yeah. Good boy, Harry."
"One of the best. A natural, I tell you."
"So... wanna finish it now?"
And they did, Hagrid's roaring bass clashing magnificently with Horace's high pitched tenor. They missed the words, they stopped to discuss which order the verses were in and they changed the melody a few times. But for them it was the best song in the world right then.
Odo the hero said to his dad
For adventure I'll go bold and true
He left the place that he'd known as a lad
Under a sky, which was blue...
"And his wand snapped in two, which was saaad!" they repeated, out of breath as well as tune. The night sky was clear and cold, and together they found their way back to hut and to the still half-full keg of goblin beer.
"To friendship! To generosity! To ten Galleons a hair!"