Nobody ever asked my birthday

Chapter 175

Ron and Harry were coming out of Divination, going down the flights of stairs towards the Great Hall. They weren't expecting Hermione to lunge into their path, her brown eyes blazing. "Hermione?" Harry ventured cautiously, remembering the last time Hermione's eyes had been that particular shade of dark chocolate - the one with habaneros in it. Blood had been shed, after all.

"Ron, Harry - With me. Now." Hermione said, stalking off at the longest pace her short legs could carry her at, as if she was imitating Snape. Ron and Harry exchanged a look, and followed at a trot.

Three turns down the hall, and Hermione turned into a classroom. "It's Snape." Hermione ground out, and Harry allowed himself to relax, just a bit. Hermione's hands were twisting her skirts in her agitation, as she said, "I heard him today, with Pince." It was only then that Harry noticed she'd completely neglected to say Professor.

Harry's lips pursed and his eyes narrowed, as he asked, "What did he say? What did Snape do?!" It took next to no effort to fuel his rage - anything that got Hermione Granger this worked up was bound to be significant.

"Oh, Harry!" Hermione said, her warm brown eyes catching his, "He's trying to ban books! Books from the library!"

"What... kind of books?" Harry ventured, over Ron's, "What a git."

"Defense against the Dark Arts." Hermione said with a stomp. "Only Madame Pince looked, well, pinched and annoyed."

Ron said, "Isn't that her usual expression?"

"No! Not to me, at any rate." Hermione snapped back, "She said that she'd put them somewhere for safekeeping - in the morning."

"So... she doesn't really want to...?" Harry asked, trying to keep up with it.

"Yeah! And I'm not about to let Snape ban the best books from the library!" Hermione said, stamping her foot. Shite, no wonder she was so outraged. And... banning defense books? Harry would be lying if he said he didn't smell a rat. But why would Snape need to manipulate Hermione? She'd study the books by herself if ... if they didn't have their study sessions.

"What can we do?" Harry asked, trying to look frustrated and sympathetic, and not like he wanted to start cackling at Snape's shenanigans.

"All three of us are going to abscond off with the books. Snape put them up in the center of Madame Pince's round desk. All we have to do is distract her."

Ron responded, "How do we do that?"

"Book Emergency" Harry and Hermione volunteered at once.

Hermione continued, "I can do it. Then you two can grab the books from Pince's desk."

And then what?" Harry prompted, "I'm not putting them into my dorm room. Snape'd really chew my hide for that, evne if he wanted them hid."

"In the Room of Requirement. We can use them to study ... at our study sessions."

[a/n: Authors hate planning meetings. It's like you're doing the same battle twice.

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