Lessons with Lupin

Lupin tutors Harry on how to fight off Dementors

Extract from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

by J.K. Rowling

‘So...’ Professor Lupin had taken out his own wand, and indicated that Harry should do the same. ‘The spell I am going to try and teach you is highly advanced magic, Harry – well beyond Ordinary Wizarding Level. It is called the Patronus Charm.’

‘How does it work?’ said Harry nervously.

‘Well, when it works correctly, it conjures up a Patronus,’ said Lupin, ‘which is a kind of Anti-Dementor – a guardian which acts as a shield between you and the Dementor.’

Harry had a sudden vision of himself crouching behind a Hagrid-sized figure holding a large club. Professor Lupin continued, ‘The Patronus is a kind of positive force, a projection of the very things that the Dementor feeds upon – hope, happiness, the desire to survive – but it cannot feel despair, as real humans can, so the Dementors can’t hurt it. But I must warn you, Harry, that the Charm might be too advanced for you. Many qualified wizards have difficulty with it.’

‘What does a Patronus look like?’ said Harry curiously.

‘Each one is unique to the wizard who conjures it.’

‘And how do you conjure it?’

‘With an incantation, which will work only if you are concentrating, with all your might, on a single, very happy memory.’ Harry cast about for a happy memory. Certainly, nothing that had happened to him at the Dursleys’ was going to do. Finally, he settled on the moment when he had first ridden a broomstick.

‘Right,’ he said, trying to recall as exactly as possible the wonderful, soaring sensation in his stomach.

‘The incantation is this –’ Lupin cleared his throat, ‘expecto patronum!’

‘Expecto patronum,’ Harry repeated under his breath, ‘expecto patronum.’

‘Concentrating hard on your happy memory?’

‘Oh – yeah –’ said Harry, quickly forcing his thoughts back to that first broom-ride. ‘Expecto patrono – no, patronum – sorry – expecto patronum, expecto patronum –’

Something whooshed suddenly out of the end of his wand; it looked like a wisp of silvery gas.

‘Did you see that?’ said Harry excitedly. ‘Something happened!’

‘Very good,’ said Lupin, smiling. ‘Right then – ready to try it on a Dementor?’

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

by J.K. Rowling

Written by J.K Rowling
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