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"She can't hear you, you know - she's petrified."

If Hermione Granger had heard it once, she'd heard it a dozen times, and that was the point.   In spite of what everyone thought, she could hear perfectly well, thank you.  On one hand, it was exciting to know something no one else knew . . . well, she knew a lot of things no one else knew, especially about the basilisk, and that was the frustration of it all.  The other hand was, she couldn't tell anyone.

She hoped she'd remember everything once the mandrake potion was done.   Or that someone would find the page of the book she had crumpled in her hand and figure out what it meant.  It was appalling, really, how little anyone had actually looked at her when they brought her in.   They just levitated her up to the infirmary and lowered her down onto the bed with hardly a glance.  Honestly. It didn't take Sherlock Holmes to figure out she was holding something and that maybe they should look at it.  But no.   She knew it was still there even though she couldn't feel it.

And speaking of feeling things, why, for the love of Nimue, did they feel compelled to put her in a bed?   She could still see, though it was a bit hazy (that was another thing no one else knew), but all she had was this lovely view of a crack in the ceiling.   At least if they'd stood her up in the corner, she could have seen what was going on in the infirmary, or perhaps had a look out the window.  It was just so boring!

She amused herself by going over all of Hogwarts, A History (memorized, of course), and mentally retaking her last term's exams (darn; she really could have written at least three extra feet on Hurling Hexes for Professor Lockhart for the extra credit). But most of the time, with nothing else to do, she slept.

It had been daylight when last she remembered, but it was definitely dark now.  So what had made her wake up?   And then she heard it: a rhythmic thumping noise just beyond the partition, punctuated by moans and groans.   Boy, were those students going to be in trouble if Madame Pomfrey heard them.   Hermione really liked Madame Pomfrey.  She was both brisk and kind, and she never said anything about the Polyjuice incident earlier this year.   She just took care of her until she was good as new,  although she did still have something of a craving for tunafish at lunch.

The thumping was getting louder and so were the voices and she wished she could tell whoever it was to knock it off, or get it over with or something. It was just embarrassing.

*THUMP*
"Unngh!"
*THUMP*
"UNNNNGGHHH!"
"THUMP*
"HAGRID! You're squashing me!"

Oh. My. God. That was Madame Pomfrey's voice! And Hagrid?!? Oh, he was nice enough, she supposed, but eeeewwwwww!

"I'm sorry, Poppy. 'M tryin' not to put meh weight behind it, thinkin' gentler'd be easier, yeh know. But if I don' use some force, I don' think I can get it in."

That mental image was not a pretty one, and right about now she would have given just about anything to really not be able to hear.

*THUMP*
"Ungghhh!"

"This isn't working, Hagrid."   Poor Madame Pomfrey sounded exhausted!

"Maybe you could try an Expansion Charm?"

"I will NOT!"   If it had been possible, Hermione would have crossed her legs at that.  "Why don't we try a Shrinking Charm instead?"

"Oh, no.  Perfesser Snape said that would be a real bad idea.  If we did tha', it might never be the same again."

Professor Snape? Oh, gross. What did Professor Snape care about Hagrid's - nope.  So not going there. Lalalalalala, can't hear you!

"Well, let's turn around and see if we can get it in that way, shall we?"

"Maybe we need another lube spell?"

"If it were any more lubricated, you wouldn't be able to hold onto it.  Come on Hagrid, just try it this way."

"All righ'. Yer in charge."

*THUMP*
"Unngh!"
*THUMP*
"Unngggghhhh!"
pantpantpantpantpant
*THUMP*
"AAARRRGGGGGHHHH!!"

What was the matter with those two? Didn't they realize that they were doing it within earshot of a ward of impressionable schoolchildren who were now going to be scarred for life? Oh, that's right. They didn't know! Now she was never going to be able to tell anyone that she could hear what was going on while she'd been petrified, and she was never going to be able to look either Madame Pomfrey or Hagrid in the eye, ever again. This was a disaster!

"That's IT!" Madam Pomfrey was shouting now. "I'm done! That will never fit!"

"Aww, Poppy, I'm sorry."

"It's not your fault, Hagrid. It just cannot be helped."

Madame Pomfrey was being so nice about the whole thing! And she couldn't help feeling sorry for Hagrid.   Although she couldn't imagine what in the world had brought them together, it seemed kind of sad that they couldn't be together, though she supposed that if they'd just thought about it, they'd have realized that it was doomed from the start. What with the size issue and all.

"This wasn' ever goin' to work, was it?"

"Well, we had to give it a try anyway."

That was so sweet! Icky, but sweet.

"Now, if you would be so good, Hagrid, as to take that back down to the dungeons and tell Severus that he's either going to have to use a smaller cauldron or brew the Mandrake Restorative Draft in his own workroom.  I am NOT trying to fit another one of his vast vats through the door of my Infirmary."

~~***~~

"She can't hear you, you know. She's petrified."

And in truth, it was a good thing that they couldn't hear her, either.   Because anyone looking into Hermione Granger's brain for the next several days would have found it very puzzling indeed that all they would be able to hear would be one giggle fit after another.