She made as though to sweep back to her seat, saw Professor Umbridge sitting right beside it, and immediately veered left towards Parvati and Lavender, who were already deep in discussion about Parvati's most recent dream.
He crossed to the window and opened it; Hermes flew inside, landed on Ron's essay and held out a leg to which a letter was attached. Ron took the letter off it and the owl departed at once, leaving inky footprints across Ron's drawing of the moon Io.
'I've already read Chapter Two,' said Hermione.
'What?' said Harry and Hermione together, staring at him.
'Sirius's head?' Hermione repeated. 'You mean like when he wanted to talk to you during the Triwizard Tournament? But he wouldn't do that now, it would be too - Sirius!'
Thirty-nine years this December,' said Professor McGonagall brusquely, snapping her bag shut.
They sat down together at the Gryffindor table.
'But Professor - he's gone and landed himself in detention again - '
'Well, I know it can't be fun when it hurts, but we don't think its anything to really worry about. It kept aching all last year, didn't it?'
Another note on the clipboard.
'How she can lecture me about not losing my temper with Umbridge!' Harry muttered to Ron under his breath, but he was grinning - his anger with Professor McGonagall had quite evaporated.
'You're less like your father than I thought,' he said finally, a definite coolness in his voice. 'The risk would've been what made it fun for James.'
' "I feel much easier in my mind now that I know Dumbledore is being subjected to fair and objective evaluation," said Mr Lucius Malfoy, 41, speaking from his Wiltshire mansion last night. "Many of us with our children's best interests at heart have been concerned about some of Dumbledore's eccentric decisions in the last few years and are glad to know that the Ministry is keeping an eye on the situation."
'Yep,' said Fred, dunking an entire roll in his soup, transferring it to his mouth and swallowing it whole.
Ron laughed but Hermione looked upset.
'Umbridge - "High Inquisitor"?' said Harry darkly, his half-eaten piece of toast slipping from his fingers. 'What does that mean?'
And with a surge of sympathy for his godfather, Harry thought Sirius was probably the only person he knew who could really understand how he felt at the moment, because Sirius was in the same situation. Nearly everyone in the wizarding world thought Sirius a dangerous murderer and a great Voldemort supporter and he had had to live with that knowledge for fourteen years . . .
'I - but - but . . . wait!' said Professor Trelawney suddenly, in an attempt at her usual ethereal voice, though the mystical effect was ruined somewhat by the way it was shaking with anger. 'I . . . I think I do see something . . . something that concerns you . . . why, I sense something . . . something dark . . . some grave peril . . .'