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Harry Potter And The Prisoner of Azkaban Chapter 2

Owl PostEdit

SynopsisEdit

Close to midnight on the eve of his thirteenth birthday, Harry Potter is under the covers of his bed with a flashlight, doing homework. He is writing an essay based on A History of Magic, about why witch-burning had been pointless, trying not to be seen or heard by the Dursleys.

The Dursleys had locked away his magical books and equipment when he returned from Hogwarts at the end of his second year. Harry managed to recover some of his books while the Dursleys were admiring Uncle Vernon's new company car, and hidden them in his room. His teachers assigned homework for the summer holidays, including Professor Snape, and Harry is anxious to avoid getting into trouble with any of them.

The Dursleys are also angry at Harry after Ron Weasley tried to telephone him. Ron made the mistake of shouting into the phone, and of identifying himself as a friend of Harry's from school. Uncle Vernon was furious that Harry had given their phone number to another wizard. Ron hadn't tried to phone since, and neither had Hermione, probably warned by Ron. Harry is, at least, allowed to let his owl Hedwig out, as long as he promises not to use her to send letters to his friends.

Harry decides to stop working on his essay, and carefully hides his books again. He suddenly notices that it's one in the morning, and thus has been his birthday for a whole hour. He goes to the window and looks out. Hedwig has been gone for two days, which is not unusual, but he misses her nonetheless. As he looks out, he sees an odd flying creature which resolves itself into two owls supporting another one, and moves aside as they fly in and land on the bed.

The unconscious owl is Errol, the Weasleys' owl, with a large package; the two carrying it were Hedwig and an owl from Hogwarts, which departs as soon as it delivers its letter. Harry opens the package, and finds a birthday card and present. Inside the card is a newspaper clipping about the Weasleys, who apparently won the Daily Prophet's annual Grand Prize Galleon Draw. The whole family is vacationing in Egypt, where Bill Weasley works for Gringotts. Harry reads the letter, which is from Ron; he apologizes for the telephone call, tells Harry about the Egypt trip, and says that he is getting a new wand from the prize money, too. He asks if Harry can meet them in London the week before classes start, when they'll be buying their supplies. He adds that Percy has been declared Head Boy. Ron has also given Harry a Pocket Sneakoscope.

Hedwig's parcel is from Hermione. She says that she is on holiday in France, and Hedwig turned up just in time to deliver her present. She reiterates much of Ron's news and also hopes that Harry can make it down to London. Her present is a Broomstick Servicing Kit which she found advertised in the Daily Prophet.

The last parcel is from Hagrid. Harry unwraps it to find a book, The Monster Book of Monsters, which flips over onto its spine and scuttles away under Harry's desk. After getting bitten once trying to retrieve it, Harry wraps it in a belt. Hagrid's letter merely says that it might come in useful next year, which Harry finds faintly ominous.

The envelope from Hogwarts contains, in addition to the normal Hogwarts letter and book list, a permission form allowing Harry to go to Hogsmeade on weekends. The form must be signed by a parent or guardian, and Harry wonders how he'll persuade one of the Dursleys to sign it. Deciding to worry about it later, he goes to sleep, happy, for once, that it is his birthday.

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