Hermione would wear nail polish

VIII. Secrets and old acquaintances

She pressed her lips together in a thin line and briefly toyed with the thought of stammering a defiant "No". Potter's half-grin, perhaps a little maliciously, made her forget the thought and she stepped up to Hooch.

“The cross, Granger. Not me ... Gosh ... "Hooch muttered out of the corner of his mouth, even before Hermione was close enough to look like she was actually too stupid to listen.

She nodded stiffly and then took the last few steps towards the sprayed cross, the ends of which were already slightly blurred.

The buckles of her shoes gleamed faintly in the weak light of the morning sun that seemed to torment itself over the ridge of the hill.

"If you would take your hands over your head and put your legs in a light straddle," Hooch commented dryly, as if she were a tour guide and had to show the usual group of nosy tourists the same three houses as they had all the years before.

Hermione's hands shook a little as she hesitantly raised them, suddenly feeling strangely vulnerable. She forced herself to concentrate, fading out the rustling of the leaves of the surrounding deciduous trees and the soft whispering of her soon-to-be classmates.

Suddenly there seemed to be a soft click from somewhere and the eyes of the two cats flared bright purple.

She winced, but didn't dare to change her position even a little, for fear that the ground around her might be streaked with expressions again.

Then, the air seemed to crackle and she would not have been surprised if lightning had struck next to her every second, first the cats' two left eyes glowed green. Two nerve-wracking seconds later, which had sent a shiver down her spine, finally her right hand too.

"Wonderful," commented Hooch.

In the meantime she seemed to have found some chewing gum in the pockets of her short black jeans, because at the very moment Hermione turned to her, she burst a large bubble gum.

The pop echoed strangely in the sudden silence.

Hooch noticed her look and rolled his bird of prey-like yellow eyes.

"Granger, did the snake steal your tongue?"

Hooch seemed tired of sighing Hermione.

"What?" Hermione looked at her as if she had made a particularly bad joke and was now waiting to be voted Comedian of the Year.

Hooch waved him away in annoyance.

"Forget it. I pushed aside the delightful fact that you're new for a moment. "

Hermione was about to start a more or less polite question about what to do next when a high-pitched female voice rang out.

"Access granted."

And then she fell.

In the middle of nowhere.

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Hermione gasped in horror as she stared up and the window of light kept shrinking.

The cobblestones on which the cross had been sprayed had simply disappeared.

Damn trapdoor.