106 Time Turners
Once they were in her office, a small room with a large, welcoming fire, Professor McGonagall motioned Arth, Harry and Hermione to sit down. She settled herself behind her desk and said abruptly, "Professor Lupin sent an owl ahead to say that you were taken ill on the train, Potter."
Before Harry could reply, there was a soft knock on the door and Madam Pomfrey, the nurse, came bustling in.
Harry went red.
"I'm fine," he said, "I don't need anything-"
"Oh, it's you, is it?" said Madam Pomfrey, ignoring this and bending down to stare closely at him. "I suppose you've been doing something dangerous again?"
"It was a dementor, Poppy," said Professor McGonagall.
They exchanged a dark look, and Madam Pomfrey clucked disapprovingly.
"Setting dementors around a school," she muttered, pushing back Harry's hair and feeling his forehead. "He won't be the last one who collapses. Yes, he's all clammy. Terrible things, they are, and the effect they have on people who are already delicate —"
"I'm not delicate!" said Harry crossly.
"Of course you're not," said Madam Pomfrey absentmindedly, now taking his pulse.
"What does he need?" said Professor McGonagall crisply. "Bed rest? Should he perhaps spend tonight in the hospital wing?"
"I'm fine!" said Harry, jumping up.
"Well, he should have some chocolate, at the very least," said Madam Pomfrey, who was now trying to peer into Harry's eyes. "I've already had some," said Harry. "Professor Lupin gave me some. He gave it to all of us."
"Did he, now?" said Madam Pomfrey approvingly. "So we've finally got a Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher who knows his remedies?"
"Are you sure you feel all right, Potter?" Professor McGonagall said sharply.
"Yes," said Harry.
"Very well. Kindly wait outside while I have a quick word with Miss Granger And Mister Kingscrown about their course schedule, then we can go down to the feast together."
Harry quickly got up and left the room leaving the four of them alone in the office. Professor McGonagall adjusted her glasses before speaking to the two of them.
"Mister Kingscrown And Miss Granger. I'm sure that by now that you two are very curious why I have singled you out from the crowd, preventing you both from enjoying the feast."
Arth raised an eyebrow while Hermione flinched.
"It is a very simple matter, your schedules will be a bit different than the other students as both of you have signed up for more classes than possible... there is just simply not enough time."
Hermione went pale.
"That is why-" Professor McGonagall gave them a warm smile, "for my two most brilliant students, I have decided to...bend some rules."
Professor McGonagall handed Hermione a small hourglass pendant.
"This is a time turner, each time you turn the hourglass you will go back one hour in time."
"You got us a time turner! How did you even get them? Aren't these heavily restricted by the ministry?"
Professor McGonagall smiled.
"Let's day I had to write many letters and call some old favors. Anyways, I trust that the both of you will be responsible and use this solely to get to your classes. I do not want to hear a word of you two abusing it in anyway. Now lets go back to the feast shall we? Mr Potter is waiting."
The four of them made their way back down the marble staircase to the Great Hall.
It was a sea of pointed black hats; each of the long House tables was lined with students, their faces glimmering by the light of thousands of candles, which were floating over the tables in mid- air.
Professor Flitwick, who was a tiny little wizard with a shock of white hair, was carrying an ancient hat and a three-legged stool out of the hall.
"Oh," said Hermione softly, "we've missed the Sorting!"
"I wonder which house Scarlett got sorted into?" Arth muttered.
They sat down near Ron, who had saved them seats.
"What was all that about?" he muttered to Harry.
Arth started to explain in a whisper, but at that moment the headmaster stood up to speak, and he broke off.
Professor Dumbledore, though very old, always gave an impression of great energy. He had several feet of long silver hair and beard, half-moon spectacles, and an extremely crooked nose. He was often described as the greatest wizard of the age.
"Welcome!" said Dumbledore, the candlelight shimmering on his beard. "Welcome to another year at Hogwarts! I have a few things to say to you all, and as one of them is very serious, I think it best to get it out of the way before you become befuddled by our excellent feast."
Dumbledore cleared his throat and continued, "As you will all be aware after their search of the Hogwarts Express, our school is presently playing host to some of the dementors of Azkaban, who are here on Ministry of Magic business. They are stationed at every entrance to the grounds," Dumbledore continued, "and while they are with us, I must make it plain that nobody is to leave school without permission. Dementors are not to be fooled by tricks or disguises — or even Invisibility Cloaks."
Arth glanced at Harry and snickered.
"Harry, I think he is talking about you."
Harry in turn responded with a middle finger.