The rest of the week went by with Harry attempting to avoid Lockhart, Collin Creevey, who seemed to have memorized his schedule, saying 'Hi' to him about half a dozen times a day and dealing with all the problems Ron's broken wand was causing him. Harry was exceptionally glad to reach the weekend. Harry, Ron and Hermione had plans to visit Hagrid Saturday morning although those plans were put on hold.
The dormitory door opened several hours before any decent person would wake up on a Saturday and Oliver Wood walked in. Neville, who's bed was closet to the door, woke with a start, pulled his hangings open and climbed out bed, rubbing sleep out of his eyes
"Hello." Wood said "Where's Harry?"
Neville, who had been very sleepy and confused a second ago, snapped to attention. He couldn't let Wood in.
"Err...Why.." He said, standing in front of Wood in an effort to block him from walking any farther into the dormitory.
"Quidditch practice. Just need to wake him up.." He tried to walk around Neville who put a hand on his shoulder
"I'll get him.." He said quickly
Wood raised an eyebrow but nodded
"Tell him to meet me on the field in fifteen minutes."
Neville nodded and Wood left.
Neville crossed the dorm to Ron's bed and pulled the hangings open. Harry was on the end closest to him, his arm around Ron and Hermione.
"Harry.." Neville said, shaking him "Harry."
Harry's eyes opened slowly and he rolled over to face Neville
"Nev.." Harry mumbled "Whassup?"
"Oliver Wood was here...he wants you on the pitch in fifteen minutes for practice."
"But it's the crack of dawn.." Harry mumbled
"I know...but I'd get up if I were you..you don't want him coming back up here."
Harry yawned and clambered carefully out of bed trying not to wake the other two and started to gather his Quidditch things while Neville went back to bed.
Harry scrawled a note to Ron and Hermione and left the dorm, stretching and grumbling to himself.
A while later Ron woke up. He yawned sleepily and looked at a sleeping Hermione and couldn't help but smile. He then noticed he was missing someone. Harry was gone.
He shook Hermione awake. She grumbled a bit and opened her eyes "What is it Ron?"
"Harry's gone." Ron said. Hermione sat up.
"Dunno...wait look." He spotted Harry's note on the bed side table
Wood wanted to have an early Quidditch practice.
Don't worry he didn't catch us, Neville headed him off. Say thanks to him for me. I'll see you later.
"Mystery solved." Ron said "We may as well go get some breakfast."
Hermione nodded and they headed off to breakfast. A little while after they arrived Ginny dropped into the seat beside Hermione.
"Ron and Hermione without Harry?" She said in a mock shocked voice as she took some toast and began nibbling on it "It's a minor miracle."
Hermione chuckled "Morning Ginny. He's at Quidditch practice."
"He's still not back yet so we were thinking about heading down to the pitch." Ron added.
"Can I come?" Ginny asked
"Sure, why not."
The three of them gathered some toast and headed out to the Quidditch Pitch where they met Collin Creevey with his camera.
"Oh Harry's gonna love that." Ron muttered
"Hey Ginny!" Collin said happily. Ginny waved.
Harry grumpily headed out of the locker room and onto the pitch, he spotted Ron, Hermione and Ginny in the stands and looked jealously at the toast in their hands
"Aren't you done yet?" Ron asked shocked
"Haven't even started." Harry grumbled "Wood was teaching us new moves." He mounted his broom and took off. Despite the early wake up and his hunger it still felt great to fly again. Collin began to try and snap pictures. Wood noticed
"Why's that first year taking pictures?" He asked "I don't like it, he could be a spy for Slytherin.."
"No." Said Harry quickly "He's a Gryffindor."
"And the Slytheirns don't need a spy because they're here!" Said George, pointing.
The slytherin team was on the field. The Gryffindors landed and the two teams glared at each other. The ensuing discussion revealed that Draco Malfoy was the new Slytherin seeker and that Snape had given the team special permission to practice that day. Mr. Malfoy had also brought the entire team nimbus 2001's a new model of broomstick that wasn't even a month old yet.
After a bit more arguing Ron, Hermione and Ginny came down onto the pitch to see what was going on.
"What's going on here?" Ron asked "How come you aren't flying..and what's he doing here."
Malfoy sneered at him "I'm the new Slytherin seeker Weasley and everyone's admiring the brooms my father brought our team."
Ron gaped at the brooms but Hermione and Ginny were both glaring at Malfoy.
"Well at least nobody on the Gryffindor team had to buy their way in, they got in on talent alone." Hermione said cooly
Malfoy's smile faltered
"And nobody asked your opinion you filthy little mudblood." He spat at her.
Harry didn't know what Malfoy meant by that..he'd never heard the word before but he realized that Malfoy had said something horrible because several things happened at once. Ginny made a noise that sounded like an angry cat. Fred and George leaped at Malfoy with snarls of rage and would have beat him to a pulp if Flint hadn't stopped them Alicia, Katie and Angelina yelled "How dare you!"
The strongest reaction though, was from Ron. Harry felt his blind rage through the thread. It was unlike anything he'd ever felt from Ron before
Kill him..I'll kill him..I'll kill him..how dare..bastard.. Ron's voice was distorted with rage and he was hardly coherent.
Ron.. Hermione thought, sounding just as confused as Harry was at the sudden uproar
NO! Ron roared he pulled out his wand and pointed it under Flint's arm at Malfoy
"You'll pay for that." He snarled
There was a loud bang and Ron fell backwards. His jinx had misfired back at him and he ended up belching slugs. Harry and Hermione took Ron on a trip to Hagrid's to get help but there was nothing they could do until the slugs stopped. After a conversation about what the term 'Mudblood' meant (It was apparently a very very derogatory term for Muggle born witches and wizards like Hermione) and a discussion about Lockhart who they had seen leaving Hagrid's cabin when they arrived (Hagrid had told him that he'd never read one of his book and that Harry was more famous than him without even trying) Hagrid showed them the giant pumpkins he was growing for Halloween. The trio then headed back to the castle as it was nearly time for lunch and Harry was starved since he'd skipped breakfast , Ron was okay now with only the occasional belch.
They met professor McGonagall in the entrance hall who informed them that they would have their detentions that night
"What are we doing?" Ron asked
"You will be helping Mr. Filtch in the in trophy room, you'll be helping him polish." Said McGonagall "Potter, you will be helping Professor Lockhart with his fan mail."
"What..can't I help Ron?" Harry begged. He didn't want to be alone with Lockhart.
"No. Professor Lockhart asked for you specifically. Eight o'clock. The both of you."
Harry and Ron, in states of deepest gloom, headed into the great hall. Both of them thought they'd gotten the worse end of the stick.