After a late breakfast she had found waiting for her on her desk, Alex made her way across the ground to the forest. This time, after pausing to hug the oak, she carried on along the path.
She was feeling very nervous and was listening intensely to all the noises around her. She sighed in relief when she heard hooves coming towards her.
A centaur stopped a few feet away from her on the path. “What are you doing here? No human should enter the forbidden forest!”
“Sorry. I didn’t know how to contact you so I thought if I entered the forest you’d somehow know I was here.”
He sighed “Very well. But next time, just ask the Oak to warn us.” He came next to her and carried on towards the edge of the forest with her. “Why did you want to see me?”
“I have a friend who works with Dumbledore. This friend has to hide in his house because the minister thinks he is guilty of something he didn’t do. I’d like to help him get out of his house. Since he is an animagus, I thought maybe you could help me find a place for him to hide when he come here?”
The centaur paused and looked at her “You are talking about Sirius Black. He knows his way through the forest. However it wouldn’t be safe for you.”
“I can change into a wolf. I found out not long ago. Would that work?”
He looked at her, thoughtful. “It seems the stars know more than they let on… Yes, it could work. Let me find a safe road and place first. I will contact you through the Oak.”
They were at the edge of the forest. “Thank you, I come back here every day anyway.”
“There is no need. You carry with you a part of the oak, infused with the Deva’s power. Where your wand is, the oak is. And where trees are, you will find help. Goodbye!” He turned his back and rode inside the forest again.
She walked slowly back to the castle, enjoying the sunny, although cool, en of the morning. She made her way to the great hall for lunch, not being very hungry but knowing she would be later.
On her plate was a folded parchment.
Please come to my office after lunch.
The password is Liquorice.
As she finished reading it; the parchment self-combusted. She let it drop in her plate by surprise and it disappeared.
She wondered throughout lunch why the headmaster had summoned her to his office, as it had only happened once before, and it was the day before.
“Ah, Alex, I was expecting you. Please, sit down. How did it go with the order?”
“Very well, sir. It was really nice to spend an evening with them, we talked about our experiences with each other’s world, it was fun. And Sirius is a really kind man.” She paused for a second. “Actually, there was something I wanted to ask you.”
“Does it have to do with him being able to get out of that house by any chance? You do understand the risks, don’t you?”
“Yes, that’s why I asked for help.”
“Oh? Who did you ask?”
“The centaurs. Well, one of them. I think if he comes here at night, and we both change form and go in the forest, the students shouldn’t notice him. The centaur said he will contact me through the oak and my wand to let me know when he has found a safe route and place.”
The headmaster looked at her in silence for a minute. “I suppose it’s worth a try. If I keep him locked in this house, I fear Sirius will lose his sanity. Please tell me when you know more.”
“I will, professor.”
To be continued…