Hagrid and Dumbledore depart

Dumbledore and Hagrid are given their marching orders from Hogwarts

Extract from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

by J.K. Rowling

Mr Lucius Malfoy strode into Hagrid’s hut, swathed in a long black travelling cloak, smiling a cold and satisfied smile. Fang started to growl.

‘Already here, Fudge,’ he said approvingly. ‘Good, good ...’

‘What’re you doin’ here?’ said Hagrid furiously. ‘Get outta my house!’

‘My dear man, please believe me, I have no pleasure at all in being inside your – er – d’you call this a house?’ said Lucius Malfoy, sneering as he looked around the small cabin. ‘I simply called at the school and was told that the Headmaster was here.’

‘And what exactly did you want with me, Lucius?’ said Dumbledore. He spoke politely, but the fire was still blazing in his blue eyes.

‘Dreadful thing, Dumbledore,’ said Mr Malfoy lazily, taking out a long roll of parchment, ‘but the governors feel it’s time for you to step aside. This is an Order of Suspension – you’ll find all twelve signatures on it. I’m afraid we feel you’re losing your touch. How many attacks have there been now? Two more this afternoon, wasn’t it? At this rate, there’ll be no Muggle-borns left at Hogwarts, and we all know what an awful loss that would be to the school.’

‘Oh, now, see here, Lucius,’ said Fudge, looking alarmed, ‘Dumbledore suspended ... no, no ... last thing we want just now ...’

‘The appointment – or suspension – of the Headmaster is a matter for the governors, Fudge,’ said Mr Malfoy smoothly. ‘And as Dumbledore has failed to stop these attacks ...’

‘Now look, Lucius, if Dumbledore can’t stop them –’ said Fudge, whose upper lip was sweating now, ‘I mean to say, who can?’

‘That remains to be seen,’ said Mr Malfoy, with a nasty smile. ‘But as all twelve of us have voted ...’

Hagrid leapt to his feet, his shaggy black head grazing the ceiling.

‘An’ how many did yeh have ter threaten an’ blackmail before they agreed, Malfoy, eh?’ he roared.

‘Dear, dear, you know, that temper of yours will lead you into trouble one of these days, Hagrid,’ said Mr Malfoy. ‘I would advise you not to shout at the Azkaban guards like that. They won’t like it at all.’

‘Yeh can’ take Dumbledore!’ yelled Hagrid, making Fang the boarhound cower and whimper in his basket. ‘Take him away, an’ the Muggle-borns won’ stand a chance! There’ll be killin’s next!’

‘Calm yourself, Hagrid,’ said Dumbledore sharply. He looked at Lucius Malfoy.

‘If the governors want my removal, Lucius, I shall of course step aside.’

‘But –’ stuttered Fudge.

‘No!’ growled Hagrid.

Dumbledore had not taken his bright blue eyes off Lucius Malfoy’s cold grey ones.

‘However,’ said Dumbledore, speaking very slowly and clearly, so that none of them could miss a word, ‘you will find that I will only truly have left this school when none here are loyal to me. You will also find that help will always be given at Hogwarts to those who ask for it.’

For a second, Harry was almost sure Dumbledore’s eyes flick- ered towards the corner where he and Ron stood hidden.

‘Admirable sentiments,’ said Malfoy, bowing. ‘We shall all miss your – er – highly individual way of running things, Albus, and only hope that your successor will manage to prevent any – ah – “killin’s”.’

He strode to the cabin door, opened it and bowed Dumbledore out. Fudge, fiddling with his bowler, waited for Hagrid to go ahead of him, but Hagrid stood his ground, took a deep breath and said carefully, ‘If anyone wanted ter find out some stuff, all they’d have ter do would be ter follow the spiders. That’d lead ’em right! That’s all I’m sayin’.’

Fudge stared at him in amazement.

‘All right, I’m comin’,’ said Hagrid, pulling on his moleskin overcoat. But as he was about to follow Fudge through the door, he stopped again and said loudly, ‘An’ someone’ll need ter feed Fang while I’m away.’

The door banged shut and Ron pulled the Invisibility Cloak off.

‘We’re in trouble now,’ he said hoarsely. ‘No Dumbledore. They might as well close the school tonight. There’ll be an attack a day with him gone.’

Fang started howling, scratching at the closed door.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

By J.K. Rowling