Always read the label

Harry and Ron learn the horrible truth about the contents of certain 'brain stimulants'

Extract from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

By J.K. Rowling

Meanwhile, a flourishing black-market trade in aids to concentration, mental agility and wakefulness had sprung up among the fifth- and seventh-years. Harry and Ron were much tempted by the bottle of Baruffio’s Brain Elixir offered to them by Ravenclaw sixth-year Eddie Carmichael, who swore it was solely responsible for the nine ‘Outstanding’ O.W.L..s he had gained the previous summer and was offering a whole pint for a mere twelve Galleons. Ron assured Harry he would reimburse him for his half the moment he left Hogwarts and got a job, but before they could close the deal, Hermione had confiscated the bottle from Carmichael and poured the contents down a toilet.

‘Hermione, we wanted to buy that!’ shouted Ron.

‘Don’t be stupid,’ she snarled. ‘You might as well take Harold Dingle’s powdered dragon claw and have done with it.’

‘Dingle’s got powdered dragon claw?’ said Ron eagerly.

‘Not any more,’ said Hermione. ‘I confiscated that, too. None of these things actually work, you know.’

‘Dragon claw does work!’ said Ron. ‘It’s supposed to be incredible, really gives your brain a boost, you come over all cunning for a few hours – Hermione, let me have a pinch, go on, it can’t hurt –’

‘This stuff can,’ said Hermione grimly. ‘I’ve had a look at it, and it’s actually dried Doxy droppings.’

This information took the edge off Harry and Ron’s desire for brain stimulants.


Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

By J.K. Rowling