'Well, I think that went quite well,' said Hermione happily, as she, Harry and Ron walked out of the Hog's Head into the bright sunlight a few moments later. Harry and Ron were clutching their bottles of Butterbeer.
'That Zacharias bloke's a wart,' said Ron, who was glowering after the figure of Smith, just discernible in the distance.
'I don't like him much, either,' admitted Hermione, 'but he overheard me talking to Ernie and Hannah at the Hufflepuff table and he seemed really interested in coming, so what could I say? But the more people the better really - I mean, Michael Corner and his friends wouldn't have come if he hadn't been going out with Ginny - ' Ron, who had been draining the last few drops from his Butterbeer bottle, gagged and sprayed Butterbeer down his front.
'He's WHAT?' spluttered Ron, outraged, his ears now resembling curls of raw beef. 'She's going out with - my sister's going - what d'you mean, Michael Corner?' 'Well, that's why he and his friends came, I think - well, they're obviously interested in learning defence, but if Ginny hadn't told Michael what was going on - ' 'When did this - when did she -?' 'They met at the Yule Ball and got together at the end of last year,' said Hermione composedly. They had turned into the High Street and she paused outside Scrivenshaft's Quill Shop, where there was a handsome display of pheasant feather quills in the window. 'Hmm . . . I could do with a new quill.' She turned into the shop. Harry and Ron followed her.
'Which one was Michael Corner?' Ron demanded furiously.
The dark one,' said Hermione.
'I didn't like him,' said Ron at once.
'Big surprise,' said Hermione under her breath.
'But, said Ron, following Hermione along a row of quills in copper pots, 'I thought Ginny fancied Harry!' Hermione looked at him rather pityingly and shook her head.
'Ginny used to fancy Harry, but she gave up on him months ago. Not that she doesn't like you, of course,' she added kindly to Harry while she examined a long black and gold quill.