NEVILLE LONGBOTTOM AND THE CAHMBER OF SECRETS
Chapter 3: The Snake's Heir
One night near Halloween eve, after leaving the infirmary for another beating he received from his room "friends," Neville met with the ghost of Sir Nicholas and he invited him to a ghost party.
"Why not?"", Neville thought. "At least I won't have to be around Harry, Ron, Seamus or Dean."
The ghost party was held on Halloween night. Neville wanted Hermione to be with him, but he dismissed that idea as Harry and Ron would come looking for the girl and take her to the party in the big dining room. The ghostly atmosphere was depressing, but it was in keeping with Neville's mood. In the end Neville had to retire because ghosts from the headhunter club arrived and started pestering everyone, ghost or not.
Neville was crestfallen down the corridors when in one of them saw that the water was flooding the floor next to a strange inscription, next to it was Mrs. Norris hanging, in that moment several students came out of the great hall and found the poor boy right in front of the inscription.
Neville, what have you done? Hermione told him as she saw the boy as a monster.
“I didn't do it.”
“The chamber of secrets has been opened, fear the heir of Slyterin dirty blood unclean," said smiling Malfoy.
Neville saw Malfoy and could not understand how someone with such a beautiful face and such charming eyes could harbor so much evil, could not understand it. Just at that moment Filch the janitor broke through and looking at Neville told him full of anger.
“You... you killed my cat.... Now I'll kill you.”
Poor Neville was scared stiff and couldn't articulate a word, he just shook his head nervously, Filch was getting closer and closer to the boy.
“Argus, stop it!” Dumbledore shouted.
The janitor insisted that Neville was responsible, but neither Dumbledore nor any of the other teachers believed that the poor boy had anything to do with it and sent everyone to bed.
In a History of Magic class, Neville was agitated, he had run from the infirmary to the classroom as fast as he could, reason? he simply had an access to green foam vomit from the stress-induced ulcers. Hermione who always sat in front of him asked the ghost teacher about the secret chamber and he reluctantly explained everything he knew to them, but in the end he claimed that this story was just a silly myth.
One very late night, Neville was alone in the common room of his house, the poor boy wanted to go upstairs to sleep, but he had to wait for the others to fall asleep, otherwise they would torment him when he tried to sleep like they did every night.
“If they don't shake my bed, it's beating.”
"If it's not a beating, they shake my bed.”
"Hey, don't forget they're throwing all your stuff around the room or the stairs.”
"Or throw them out the window.”
"Yes, that's the most serious thing, I had to learn accio through despair.”
"The worst was when they threw your wand out the window.”
"Yes, I had to go down to the courtyard and Filch punished me... Damn it, I keep talking to myself!”
Neville was angry at himself when a loud noise rang in the place, Dobby the elf stood in front of him.
“Mr. Longbottom, Dobby is sad that he has not heeded Dobby's warnings.”
“Dobby, what are you doing here?”
“Dobby came to warn you sir, you must leave Hogwarts now that the secret chamber has been opened.”
“Then it's true, there is the chamber and it's been opened, tell me who was Dobby.”
“Dobby can't say sir, Dobby can't betray his masters.”
“Why are you warning me about this, Dobby?”
“You, sir, are the child who lived, thanks to you the one who must not be named was defeated along with his henchmen, all the domestic elves stopped being treated like animals, although, even though poor Dobby is still treated like an animal," said Dobby and began to weep.
“Dobby, please stop crying, I'm worried about you...”
“The great Mr. Longbottom cares about me, Dobby knew that the Lord was great, but I didn't know he also had a huge heart," said the elf impressed and Neville blushed.
“Dobby, were you the one who stopped me from crossing the wall?”
“Yes sir, Dobby thought that if I blocked the wall you wouldn't attend Hogwarts, Dobby did everything. Dobby knows dark magic that allows him not to be detected by other domestic elves or appear within Hogwarts, Dobby's masters would like to have that power but only the domestic elves can have it, yes, Dobby did everything, he even did not allow your letters sir to reach your friend...”
“Dobby is sorry, sir, but Dobby thought that if you thought your friend wasn't responding, you wouldn't want to go back to Hogwarts.”
Now Neville knew why Hermione didn't answer any of his letters, at first the boy wanted to talk to his friend about this, but then he thought it would be best not to discuss it.
“Sir, you must leave Hogwarts before another death happens.”
“Did someone die?”
“Yes sir, years ago a student died, the Lord must leave.”
“I'm sorry, Dobby, but I can't do that," Neville replied, and Dobby started sobbing.
"I wish I could do something for you.”
“The lord is very generous, but he doesn't need to worry about me, the one who is in danger is you please leave Hogwarts," said Dobby, disappearing afterwards.
Neville decided to go to Dumbledore to warn him about Dobby's visit, but just as he was getting ready to leave the common room he remembered what time it was and not knowing where Dumbledore's office was, so he decided to wait until tomorrow.
The next day, Neville decided to skip class and got dressed to meet McGonagall, a pity that he suffered a setback when he put his feet in his shoes and found that there were animal droppings inside, or at least that's what he wished it was, Neville changed his socks and ran to McGonagall's office.
Upon arriving at McGonagall, the boy explained the situation to her and the teacher accompanied him to Dumbledore's office. Neville told the principal everything that happened during Dobby's visit.
“Albus, you think this is related to what happened to Mr. Creevey.”
“I have no doubt Minerva, but as I said before, the important thing is not who, but how," said the director cryptic.
“Sir, what happened to Colin?”
“Mr. Creevey was attacked by something we don't know what it was, he is alive but petrified," Dumbledore said.
The news of what happened to Colin leaked through the school and everyone suspected Neville.
“That Colin boy was always bothering, taking pictures of everyone, and his parents are Muggles," said a student in the halls without caring if Neville listened to him.
“That Neville always gave me a bad feeling, look how skinny he is," said another student.
“And those eyes are the eyes of a depraved, a murderer..." said another student, without mind lowering her voice.
“Neville is pure blood, surely he is the heir of Slyterin," said another boy.
“But is he not from Gryffindor?” And so the gossip continued and continued, poor Neville hurried the pace and ended up running.
After a few days a dueling club is established and this is supervised by Lockhart and Snape. Lockhart, after losing to Snape (according to him, on purpose), decides that Neville will be next to fight.
“Now... tell a friend of yours to train with you," said Lockhart. Neville just looked down.
“That idiot doesn't have any friends, professor," said Ron mockingly in a loud voice so that he would be heard throughout the hall, and all the Gryffindor laughed at Neville, who looked as red as a tomato and blushed more when he saw how the Ravenclaws laughed at him, and of course at the Slyterin, only the Hufflepuffs didn't laugh.
“Seriously, no one is Neville's friend?” Lockhart asked.
Hermione, eager to participate, volunteered.
“In reality, a duel can be a dangerous thing and I would like a male participant," said Lockhart. Hermione looked frowned at the professor, couldn't believe Lockhart was a machist.
“Any suggestions Severus?” Lockhart asked Snape. Neville felt that fear would dominate him, but something curious happened, Professor Snape's expression was strange, his gaze lost in the void, as if he was remembering something very sad.3
Malfoy offered himself with a sinister expression on his face. Neville was already starting to shake her legs.
“Well, then let's get started," said cheerfully Lockhart and took Neville to the center of the dueling table.
“Don't worry squib, this won't hurt, at least not to me," Malfoy said. Neville swallowed saliva.
In fact, it didn't hurt Malfoy at all, as he swept the floor with poor Neville. The idiot of Lockhart insisted that Neville confronted the blond again and again, and most students laughed at Neville.
“Enough is enough," said Snape, and Malfoy was surprised.
“All right professor, just let me give Longbottom a souvenir," said the platinum plated with malice and conjured a snake from his wand.
Neville was petrified but apparently Snape went to the rescue of the boy no matter how incredible it may seem.
“Don't worry Severus, I'll take care of it," said Lockhart, but all he did was raise the snake and let it fall again, and it made him angry.
“Damn it, if you come near me, I bite you” Neville heard the snake talking.
“Mama!” Justin Flinch-Fletchley shouted
The serpent turned and advanced to the Hufflepuff.
“Don't shout so loudly," said the snake, even though only Neville understood him.
“Don't hurt Justin," Neville said as he approached the snake. “Please don't bite him, nobody's gonna hurt you.”
The snake calmed down and Snape made him disappear.
Neville approached Justin to see if he was okay.
“But what the hell were you trying to do!” the Hufflepuff shouted to him and the teachers sent everyone away from the classroom. Snape looked at Neville strangely.
Neville could not understand why Justin told him that, but later Hermione explained to Neville that only a tenebrous magician could speak to the serpents, in fact not just any tenebrous magician, but a very powerful one, Hermione told him that Salazar Slyterin and Voldemort also spoke to the serpents.
If at first the students at school didn't bother to keep their voices down when Neville passed by, now they were speaking loudly about the poor boy and even pointing his finger at him in accusatory fashion. His room "friends" who knew him well did not believe that he was Slyterin's heir and continued to martyr him whenever they could.
“Why didn't I go to Hufflepuff," Neville was talking to himself.
"You should have given the stone to the one who must not be named.”
"It's true, Neville, you're a fool, a moron, an asshole, a..."
Again the beautiful scarlet sphere cracked and Neville felt very miserable.
The boy, although it was very late at night, left his common room and wandered aimlessly through the corridors of the castle for a long time. No prefect or teacher on duty crossed paths with him, Filch and Mrs. Norris were far away from the boy, just as any ghost, even the few paintings that did not sleep at this hour did not notice his presence.
Not knowing how, Neville got to the astronomy tower. The boy put on a serious face and climbed over a battlement.
I don't need to be here... I don't need to be in a place like this.....
The silence of the dark night was interrupted by the noise of something heavy that fell on the floor...
TO BE CONTINUE...
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