Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
How we cite our quotes:
"What've we got this afternoon?" said Harry [...]
"Defense Against the Dark Arts," said Hermione at once.
"Why," demanded Ron, seizing her schedule, "have you outlined all Lockhart's lessons in little hearts?" (6.77-79)
Here's a moment where we really see the disadvantage to poor Hermione of having two boys as best friends. She clearly has a normal girly crush on Professor Lockhart (her 100% on the pop quiz he offers about his own famous deeds is further proof that Hermione likes him). Still, her twelve-year-old girl behavior gets merciless ribbing from Ron – who, of course, is too emotionally dense to start wondering why it bothers him so much that Hermione has a giant crush on their handsome Defense teacher.
Ginny Weasley, who sat next to Colin Creevey in Charms, was distraught, but Harry felt that Fred and George were going the wrong way about cheering her up. They were taking turns covering themselves with fur or boils and jumping out at her from behind statues. They only stopped when Percy, apoplectic with rage, told them he was going to write to Mrs. Weasley and tell her Ginny was having nightmares. (11.24)
We love the twins, but they don't always have the greatest sense of what is actually going to help their loved ones. This moment with Ginny accomplishes two things. First, it makes us laugh. Secondly, it indicates that Ginny seems to be suffering over something – what, of course, we find out later in the novel. This moment with the twins also reminds us of later moments in the Harry Potter series, when Fred and George's (mostly) well-meaning teasing has the opposite of its intended effect. We're thinking specifically of their mockery of Ron during Book 5, when he's doing such a bad job of being Quidditch Keeper. The twins manage to erode Ron's already shaky confidence (possibly) without meaning to. They're not bad guys, but they're not sensitive. How does the twins' insensitivity shape their love of (and skill with) practical jokes? What role do the twins' shenanigans play in the Harry Potter novels?
"I must ask you, Harry, whether there is anything you'd like to tell me," he said gently. "Anything at all."
Harry didn't know what to say. He thought of Malfoy shouting, "You'll be next, Mudbloods!" and of the Polyjuice Potion simmering away in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom. Then he thought of the disembodied voice he heard twice and remembered what Ron had said: "Hearing voices no one else can hear isn't a good sign, even in the Wizarding world." He thought, too, about what everyone was saying about him, and his growing dread that he was somehow connected with Salazar Slytherin...
"No," said Harry. "There isn't anything, Professor..." (12.36-38)
Harry willingly tells his friends about all of these things – that he's connected to Slytherin and that he's been hearing voices. It's also clear that Professor Dumbledore suspects something is up, though we can't be sure that he knows exactly what. So, why doesn't Harry want to tell Professor Dumbledore what has been troubling him? What is the difference between a friend and a mentor? What does Harry's behavior towards Professor Dumbledore in Book 2 tell us about his relationship with the Headmaster at this point in the novels? How do his motivations differ in this book, as compared to his refusal to speak to Professor Dumbledore in Book 5?