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"But," spluttered Harry, "but you said the prophecy means —“
"Out of the way, please, Harry," said Dumbledore. He raised his wand and made complicated movements over the surface of the-potion, murmuring soundlessly. Nothing happened, except per haps that the potion glowed a little brighter. Harry remained silent while Dumbledore worked, but after a while Dumbledore with-drew his wand, and Harry felt it was safe to talk again.
'Professor,' said Harry quietly, as the gates at the bottom of the drive came into view, 'will we be Apparating?'
Chapter 27: The Lightning-Struck Tower
'It is natural to be afraid,' said Dumbledore.
Great fat tears oozed out of the corners of Hagrid's crinkled eyes again; he grasped Harry's arm and shook it
"Here, drink this, drink this, you'll be all right," said Harry des-perately, and once again Dumbledore obeyed him, opening his mouth even as he kept his eyes tight shut and shook from head to foot. And now he fell forward, screaming again, hammering his fists upon the ground, while Harry filled the ninth goblet.
And Harry realized, with a shock so huge it seemed to root him to the spot, that Malfoy was crying — actually crying — tears streaming down his pale face into the grimy basin. Malfoy gasped and gulped and then, with a great shudder, looked up into flu-cracked mirror and saw Harry staring at him over his shoulder.
Harry made to speak again, but this time Dumbledore raised his hand for silence, frowning slightly at the emerald liquid, evidently thinking hard. "Undoubtedly," he said, finally, "this potion must act in a way that will prevent me taking the Horcrux. It might paralyze me, cause me to forget what I am here for, create so much pain I am dis-tracted, or render me incapable in some other way. This being the case, Harry, it will be your job to make sure I keep drinking, even if you have to tip the potion into my protesting mouth. You understand?"
'If I tell you to flee, you will obey?'
"Typical," said Ron.
Harry could smell salt and hear rushing waves; a light, chilly breeze ruffled his hair as he looked out at moon-lit sea and star-strewn sky. He was standing upon a high outcrop of dark rock, water foaming and churning below him. He glanced over his shoulder. A towering cliff stood behind them, a sheer drop, black and faceless. A few large chunks of rock, such as the one upon which Harry and Dumbledore were standing, looked as though they had broken away from the cliff face at some point in the past. It was a bleak, harsh view, the sea and the rock unrelieved by any tree or sweep of grass or sand.
Malfoy wheeled around, drawing his wand. Instinctively, Harry pulled out his own. Malfoy's hex missed Harry by inches, shattering the lamp on the wall beside him; Harry threw himself sideways, thought Levicorpus! and flicked his wand, but Malfoy blocked the jinx and raised his wand for another —
He hurried out of the common room and along the seventh floor as fast as he could, passing nobody but Peeves, who swooped past in the opposite direction, throwing bits of chalk at Harry in a routine sort of way and cackling loudly as he dodged Harry's defensive jinx. Once Peeves had vanished, there was silence in the corridors; with only fifteen minutes left until curfew, most people had already returned to their common rooms.
After several long moments — or it might have been half an hour — or possibly several sunlit days — they broke apart. The room had gone very quiet. Then several people wolf-whistled and there was an outbreak of nervous giggling. Harry looked over the top of Ginny's head to see Dean Thomas holding a shattered glass in his hand, and Romilda Vane looking as though she might throw something. Hermione was beaming, but Harry's eyes sought Ron. At last he found him, still clutching the Cup and wearing an expression appropriate to having been clubbed over the head. For a fraction of a second they looked at each other, then Ron gave a tiny jerk of the head that Harry understood to mean, Well—if you must.。