Study Guide

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Chapter 19

By J.K. Rowling

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Chapter 19

Elf Tales

  • Later that night, everyone comes to visit Ron in Madam Pomfrey's infirmary: Hagrid, Ginny, Harry, Hermione, Fred, and George.
  • Hermione has gotten over being mad at Ron, and now she's just worried about him.
  • Everyone tries to figure out why Slughorn would have poisoned Ron, or why he would have wine that was poisoned in his possession. How did he get the poisoned drink past Filch?
  • Harry remembers that the wine was a Christmas present that Slughorn had meant to give to Dumbledore.
  • Everyone begins to see that the incident with the opal necklace and Katie Bell's injury is most likely linked to the poisoning of Ron. Both the necklace and the wine were meant to get to somebody in Hogwarts, but in both cases they ended up in the wrong hands.
  • It would seem that the sender of these items does not care about who gets hurt along the way.
  • Hagrid tells Harry that he overheard Dumbledore and Snape having an argument. Snape told Dumbledore that he doesn't want to do something anymore and that he feels Dumbledore takes people for granted.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Weasley arrive on the scene kissing and hugging everyone around. They are incredibly worried about Ron but relieved to know that he is OK. They thank Harry profusely for saving Ron's life.
  • Now that Ron is out sick, the Gryffindor Quidditch team needs a new Keeper.
  • Harry allows Cormac McLaggen, the runner-up for the position, to temporarily take Ron's place.
  • Cormac proves to be a terror on the Quidditch field: he yells at people, bosses his teammates around, and doesn't listen to Harry.
  • It's a rough time for the Gryffindor Quidditch team.
  • On the way to his Quidditch match that weekend, Harry runs into Malfoy flanked by two young girls. They are going the opposite direction, which is odd, because all of Hogwarts gathers for a Quidditch match – it's the place to be.
  • The match is a disaster. McLaggen is a terrible team player, and Gryffindor loses terribly. In the process, McLaggen manages to crack Harry's skull, sending Harry straight to the infirmary.
  • Harry and Ron hang out in the infirmary together, but Harry's mind is racing with the information he's recently gathered about Malfoy and Snape. He is frustrated that he's confined to a bed, as there is so much he needs to do in the way of investigating Malfoy.
  • Ron tells Harry that he's getting a bit obsessed over this whole Malfoy thing.
  • Harry summons his house elf Kreacher and his elf friend Dobby and asks the two to tail Malfoy and to report back on his actions and whereabouts.

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