'I don't think Daddy exactly pays people to write for the magazine,' said Luna dreamily. They do it because it's an honour and, of course, to see their names in print.'
He said nothing. Their cherub threw another handful of confetti over them; some of it landed in the last cold dregs of coffee Harry had been about to drink.
'The Quibbler!' she said, cackling. 'You think people will take him seriously if he's published in The Quibbler!'
'Told you already, we're not fussed about NEWTs,' said Fred. 'The Snackboxes are ready to roll, we found out how to get rid of those boils, just a couple of drops of Murtlap essence sorts them, Lee put us on to it.'
'Can't wait to see what Umbridge thinks of you going public,' said Dean, sounding awestruck at dinner on Monday night. Seamus was shovelling down large amounts of chicken and ham pie on Dean's other side, but Harry knew he was listening.
'Harry! Harry, over here!'
'You've got exams coming!'
Rita had been on the point of withdrawing an acid-green quill from her bag. Looking as though she had been forced to swallow Stinksap, she snapped her bag shut again.
They entered the Great Hall for breakfast at exactly the same moment as the post owls on Monday morning. Hermione was not the only person eagerly awaiting her Daily Prophet: nearly everyone was eager for more news about the escaped Death Eaters, who, despite many reported sightings, had still not been caught. She gave the delivery owl a Knut and unfolded the newspaper eagerly while Harry helped himself to orange juice; as he had only received one note during the entire year, he was sure, when the first owl landed with a thud in front of him, that it had made a mistake.
The lessons with Snape are making it worse,' said Harry flatly 'I'm getting sick of my scar hurting and I'm getting bored with walking down that corridor every night.' He rubbed his forehead angrily. 'I just wish the door would open, I'm sick of standing staring at it - '
'OK, Harry?' said Hermione, turning to him. 'Ready to tell the public the truth?'
'You're early!' said Hermione, moving along to give him room to sit down. '] thought you were with Cho, I wasn't expecting you for another hour at least!'
'Cute, isn't it?' said Cho happily.
'You've got exams coming!'
'Oh, I forgot to ask you,' said Hermione brightly, glancing over at the Ravenclaw table, 'what happened on your date with Cho? How come you were back so early?'
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'Well, they should!' said Harry forcefully. 'Then I could've just told her I fancy her, and she wouldn't have had to get herself all worked up again about Cedric dying!'
Ron and Ginny went off for baths after dinner; Harry and Hermione returned to the busy Gryffindor common room and their usual pile of homework. Harry had been struggling with a new star-chart for Astronomy for half an hour when Fred and George turned up.
Rita didn't say anything for a while, but eyed Hermione shrewdly, her head a little to one side.