Chapter 48 // Down the rabbit hole
I ran towards the castle, threw open the doors and made my way to Flitwick’s office, when something made me I stop dead in my tracks.
‘What the fuck?’ I whispered to myself as I moved closer to the wall, reading the words over and over again. Her skeleton will lie in the Chamber forever.
I stepped back when I heard noises coming from the stairs. Harry and Ron came down the stairs, holding Lockhart at wandpoint. Harry and Ron hadn’t noticed me yet, but Lockhart did.
‘Miss Macmillan! These brats stole my wand. Show some kindness.’
I pulled up an eyebrow, drew out my wand and pointed it at him. He took a step back and started shaking.
‘If Harry points his wand at you, he must have a very good reason,’ I said, ‘Lead the way, boys.’
‘You shouldn’t get involved in this, Katherine,’ Ron said, putting his hand on my shoulder and trying to push me away, ‘It’s too dangerous.’
‘I can hold my own. Tell me what’s going on.’
Harry sighed and gestured towards the girl’s bathroom. They sent Lockhart in first, shaking like a leave. Moaning Myrtle, the ghost that haunted the bathroom, was sitting on the tank of the end toilet.
‘Oh, it’s you,’ she said when she saw Harry. ‘What do you want this time?’
‘Have you been here before?’ I whispered to Ron, only now noticing how terrible he looked.
‘We made our Polyjuice potion here,’ he whispered back, pointing at one of the stalls.
‘I want to ask you how you died,’ Harry said. Myrtle’s whole aspect changed at once. She looked as though she had never been asked such a flattering question. She started off a story about being bullied and even though I didn’t regularly went to cry on the toilet, I felt like it could’ve applied to me. I walked to the sink in front of her toilet, only half listening to what she was saying.
‘The tap never worked,’ she said as I turned it.
‘Check this out,’ Harry and Ron hurried over to my side. Lockhart was standing well back, a look of utter terror on his face. I pointed to the side of one of the copper taps. Scratched onto it was a tiny snake.
‘Harry,’ said Ron. ‘Say something. Something in Parseltongue.’
‘Open up,’ he said, in English. My finger slid over the little snake.
‘Open,’ I whispered, except that that wasn’t what I heard. A strange hissing had escaped me, and at once the tap glowed with a brilliant white light and began to spin. Next second, the sink began to move; the sink, in fact, sank, right out of sight, leaving a large pipe exposed, a pipe wide enough for a man to slide into.
‘What are we looking at?’ I asked, although I had some idea where this pipe might lead.
‘The entrance of the Chamber of Secrets,’ Harry answered as he looked up again. ‘I’m going down there.’
‘Me too,’ said Ron.
‘Why?’ I asked, stepping a bit closer to the edge and looking down, seeing nothing but darkness. The boys didn’t answer, staring at their shoes.
‘Because,’ Ron clenched his hands into fists, ‘my sister is down there.’