Chapter Twenty-Two: St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries
Better Title: Cell Phones! Use Cell Phones!
Cell phones would cause this chapter to be a scant two sentences. And those two sentences would be:
Dumbledore called the hospital, and then called Mrs. Weasley, and then called Sirius, and everything worked out. Meanwhile, Lupin was still working on his jetpack blueprint.
Too much of this chapter deals with people delivering messages and awaiting responses. Birds, portraits, and magic are all used to make sure Mr. Weasley is okay after the attack at the Ministry.
All the magic and waiting makes the chapter somewhat tense and exciting, but it also makes me angry. Why can't they use cell phones? Why must these backwards-thinking wizards hold on to their magical ways with such a fierce grip?
Is there no wizard or witch progressive enough to embrace modern technology? If such a magical being existed, s/he would be the new master of them all. He who can kill with words is no match for she who can kill with words and send a text at the speed of satellites.
I want to read about the wizard who uses cell phones, guns, computers, modern science, and helicopters. Surely a cell phone, gun, computer, science, and helicopters would come in handy in the wizarding world. And it seems downright ignorant for the wizards to shun modern amenities for the sake of…the sake of…what, exactly?
What would be the harm in using a cell phone? Why doesn't a wizard try to shoot Voldemort in the nose with a rifle? Why isn't there an online database for the long, storied, complex history of wizards? Why don't they fly in helicopters that shoot wizard lightning and breath fire?
Combining the old with the new would be a win-win situation for everyone!
But now I'm ranting.
While everyone is rushing about, waiting to hear about Mr. Weasley, Harry and the gang are taken to Grimauld Place to be closer to the hospital.
Good news! Mr. Weasley won't die.
Bad news! Harry's mind is possessed by Voldemort…or something.
Favorite Part of the Chapter: Mrs. Weasley's reaction when she sees Harry and thanks him for saving her husband. She's so overjoyed it makes me warm and fuzzy.
RON: I should tell Hermione about my dad.
HARRY: Want to borrow my phone?
RON: No. Phones will burn off a wizard's ear.
HARRY: You could send her an email.
RON: But my message will contain more letters than just E. That idea seems pointless.
HARRY: You don't understand. There's a network of computers that enable a person to electronically send and receive—
RON: Shut up. I'm just going to write a note, tie it to an owl, send the owl to the museum where a portrait can read it and the portrait will rush to tell the other portraits. Then, they'll tell the Living Vase. The Living Vase will create a riddle from my words and use them to trick a child. The child will solve the riddle, whisper it into a cracked oak tree, and the tree's leaves will float away and spell out the message in the sky…in the language of Toof-Noot, which trees speak. Hermione can read Toof-Noot, right? Hope so.
HARRY: And how long will that take?
RON: Five days, at a cost of $45. Worth every moment and every penny.
HARRY: I hate my life sometimes. Most times, really…
RON: The message must be written in blood…eye blood. Be a friend and prick my eye, would you?
Chapter Twenty-Three: Christmas on the Closed Ward
Better Title: I Want to Adopt Neville
Harry is still worried that Voldemort is in his brain and thinks of running back to the Dursleys where he can't hurt anyone. Dumbledore sends a message and demands Harry stay put.
Hermione shows up and along with The Lamp, convinces Harry that he's not truly possessed by Voldemort and instead of running away, he should help his friend Ron and stay put as Dumbledore ordered.
Sirius is happy to have visitors for the Christmas holiday as all the Weasleys, Hermione, Harry, Mad Eye, and Tonks seem to be to crashing at his house.
The most heartbreaking moment of the chapter comes when the gang visit Mr. Weasley in the hospital. He seems to be doing fine, and the kids head off to the cafeteria, where they find the still-delirious Gilderoy Lockhart. After the scuffle from book two, Gilderoy went insane, which is really scary if you think about it.
But what's worse is Neville's situation. Poor, poor Neville. He spent his Christmas afternoon visiting his parents in the asylum. The Longbottoms were tortured to insanity by Bellatrix, and even thinking about Neville's Christmas makes me want to adopt a cat, name it Neville, and spoil it with treats and living goldfish.
Ron and Hermione didn't know about Neville's parents, and this makes for a bit of awkward conversation. And then Neville takes the candy wrapper his mom gave him and cherishes it and...
And…oh god. I'm crying again.
To get over this, I'm going to think about jetpacks and Batman and Lego and…and…What? WHAT?!
WHAT THE HOLY CRAP OF NFDLKNGDJKNOLDgngregwergngergr
There's now a Lego Batman set? And he has a jetpack? AND YOU CAN BUY IT WITH MONEY?!?!?!?!
Screw you, Neville! I have no more tears for your situation. My tears are now made of happiness!
Can the rest of this article be about Batman's Lego Jetpack?
Favorite Part of the Chapter: Batman's jetpack, made of Lego.
RON: He should have a jetpack!
DAN: And now he does! And it's Lego!
BATMAN: Dan, today is a day you shall never forget.
EMMETT: Dan, want to come over and punch foes with me and Batman?
BELLA: Uh-oh! I was just decapitated and now I'm going to die forever, as will my popularity and relevance…
ROBOCOP: Dan, I'm making pancakes. How many dozens do you want?
Chapter Twenty-Four: Occlumency
Better Title: Batman Jetpacks!
Dumbledore wants Snape to teach Harry Occlumency, which is the ability to close off one's mind. This will stop Voldemort from poking around in Harry's head. But Harry isn't too thrilled at the thought of extra school work and spending more time with Snape. Sirius doesn't like it either, and there's almost a duel, but a healthy Mr. Weasely returns home just in time to break up the tension.
With the holiday over, it's time to head back to school. All the members of Dumbledore's Army keep asking when the next secret meeting will be, and Harry is getting a bit flustered.
But he does manage to make a date with Cho Chang for Valentine's Day in Hogsmeade. Awwwwww! How awesome! (No, I'm not talking about this scene. I just put Lego Batman Jetpack on my desk! Can't. Look. Away.)
Harry's first Occlumency lesson doesn't go well. Snape isn't exactly a nurturing instructor and this seems to be some high-level magic. Before the lesson begins, Snape yanks out one of his own memories, perhaps something he doesn’t want Harry to see.
During the lesson, Harry has visions of the Department of Mystery at the Ministry of Magic and later he and the fellow members of Shark Force Omega agree that the Department of Mystery must be the location of the secret weapon Voldemort is after.
That night, Harry hears crazy laughter in his mind. Voldemort seems wildly excited and happy about something. What could it be? Lego Batman w/ Jetpack, presumably.
Favorite Part of the Chapter: Snape is great, even though he's creepy and awful.
SNAPE: Now I will try to enter your mind, Potter. Stop me!
SNAPE: [closes his eyes] What? I am NOT a rat-faced virgin! Stop thinking that!
SNAPE: And stop drawing mental pictures of me eating my own fart. What's wrong with you?
HARRY: I'm creative!
SNAPE: You're messed up, kid.
HARRY: I'll stop. Now I'm going to think about my mom and how pretty she was.
SNAPE: Oh. That's okay. You don't have to…
HARRY: I'm thinking about her pretty face and how her eyes were like two pools of heaven…
SNAPE: Oh God, no…
HARRY: Now I'm thinking about how she held me and cradled me to her warm, motherly bosom.
SNAPE: But…the…oh my… [Snape passes out]
House Bergstein School Announcements
The tornado in the lobby is there for your own protection. Please don't be afraid. His name is Jonas Wentworth and he's part of the school's new anti-drug/anti-curse word policy.
The school assembly "Air Trolls and the Environment" has been canceled after we learned that "air trolls" are just butterflies and they do not "emit harmful radiation."
The girl's hatchet team is raising money for new hatchets. Stop by their table in the cafeteria and buy a raffle ticket to win a brand new invisible duck!
Use the formula "x-y=1/5(4y)" to solve the problem of "What kind of jacket should I wear today?"
Find a cure for blueberries.
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