Matthew calmly moved with the crowd as they neared the gates of Hogwarts.

The tension in the air was palpable.

“They are getting closer and closer to the gate of Hogwarts campus!” a concerned voice in the crowd remarked.

“Go to Hogsmeade… Wait, will it be safe?” another voice questioned.

Matthew pondered the situation, his brow furrowing. “Honestly,” he thought to himself, “I don’t think so…”

Hogwarts appeared chaotic, but Matthew saw a clear purpose behind the scenes.

The Order of the Phoenix was orchestrating a revolution against Grindelwald, targeting him and his followers while aiming to avoid harming the innocent.

Yet, Grindelwald’s seemingly passive retreat didn’t fool Matthew.

He knew better, suspecting hidden schemes beneath the surface.

“The current Hogwarts is actually safe,” he mused to himself, “just a little messy. It may not be long before all this turmoil will be quietly calmed down. Everything will be calm again.”

His thoughts took a different turn as he considered the alternative: Hogsmeade.

“There will be many unknown factors there,” he reasoned. Memories of a past encounter with Tom Gaunt haunted him. “If I went to Hogsmeade and met Voldemort, what should I do?”

In the midst of these troubling thoughts, Matthew made a resolute decision – for the sake of safety, he would stay on the Hogwarts campus, rather than following the main group to Hogsmeade.

Matthew slowed down subconsciously, falling behind the rest of the group. “No one would notice,” he observed, “after all, everyone is busy…”

Some were concerned about encountering danger again, while others debated Lily Evans’ claims about Grindelwald’s true nature.

Unintentionally, excited conversations flowed amidst the anxious atmosphere.

“The three prefects are busy maintaining order,” Matthew noticed, “and they have no time to take care of too much.”

Seizing the moment, Matthew pretended to bend down to tie his shoelaces, allowing him to put some distance between himself and the main group.

After finding an opportunity, he quickly departed from the main force and sought refuge amidst a cluster of bushes.

His intention was to return to campus and find a safe place to settle temporarily.

Just as he turned, preparing to leave, a sudden tap on his shoulder jolted him, nearly causing him to drop his wand.

“Who is it?” he whispered, adrenaline pumping as he quickly turned around.

To his relief, the familiar faces of Neville and Hermione appeared before him.

Hermione couldn’t help but tease, “I knew… Matthew, you definitely won’t go to Hogsmeade!”

Neville chimed in with a smile, “So we’ve been keeping an eye on you, and when we saw you considering running off, we quickly followed.”

Matthew was rendered temporarily speechless by their unexpected presence.

Concern shifted to a more serious tone as Hermione inquired, “So… the two Dark Wizards and the Centaurs from earlier, they were alright, weren’t they?”

Neville quickly added, “What should we do, which way to help, Matthew? We listen to you!”

Matthew glanced at Hermione and then at Neville, taking in their expectant expressions.

With a nod and a soft tone, he conveyed his plan, “Let’s wait and see, go around the castle first, no matter what happens, don’t be reckless…”

“Good!” Neville and Hermione agreed in unison, and the three of them moved stealthily, inching closer to Hogwarts.

Inside the castle, the situation remained dire.

While the previous tremors had ceased, hundreds of students and teachers were still trapped, with the exit blocked by fierce House-elves. In the Forbidden Forest, a group of black Centaurs approached.

Trapped students huddled in classrooms, confused and unsure of what to do.

They were awaiting their fate, their expressions mirroring the uncertainty that hung in the air.

Professors Flitwick, Sprout, and Sinistra, the deans of the three houses, maintained a cautious vigil over the students, sharing their worries but not succumbing to panic.

“The worst case happened!” Professor Flitwick sighed, “I only hope that this time, not many people will lose their lives…”

Professor Sprout added, “I have to say, I admire their persistence. For fifty years, they have not given up… But their hope of victory is very, very slim…”

Professor Sinistra chimed in, “We have long been accustomed to Grindelwald’s rule; after so many years, Hogwarts is actually quite good. I really don’t understand why they can’t even think about it! The times have actually changed…”

Professor Sprout offered an explanation, “They have their persistence… Only this time, the momentum seems to be much greater than before.”

Resigned to their current situation, the three professors fell into a contemplative silence.

In the Headmaster’s Office at Hogwarts, McGonagall and Rosier faced each other, wands at the ready.

Professor Rosier coldly admonished, “I can only say that you came here today. It was an absolutely wrong choice! Master Grindelwald is on his way back to Hogwarts. In a few hours, all of you rebels will met your end here!

Unfazed, McGonagall wore a fearless expression. “Then I can only say, I have a completely different view. Even Grindelwald can’t save you today, Rosier!”

Their wands clashed in a dazzling display of magic as a fierce duel unfolded.

The battle intensified, with spells like fire, vipers, and flying knives filling the room.

McGonagall’s resilience prevailed as she used enchanted silverware to protect herself and created a standoff against Rosier.

An explosion rocked the room, followed by a tense silence.

As the smoke cleared, Rosier had vanished, leaving a shattered window as evidence of her escape.

McGonagall glanced out the window and spotted a figure retreating into the distance.

A satisfied smile crept onto her face – she had won.

The Order of the Phoenix had successfully retaken Hogwarts, and Grindelwald’s loyal followers were fleeing.

Then, a mysterious voice echoed throughout the castle, revealing shocking truths about Grindelwald’s rule and McGonagall’s return.

Professors and students were astounded, their world reshaped by revelations.

Meanwhile, Rosier hadn’t ventured far from Hogwarts.

She had landed by the Black Lake, where Grindelwald awaited her.

“I lost, I lost to Minerva! It’s because Hogwarts have given them some sort of protection! Forgive me, Lord!”

Rosier admitted her defeat to Grindelwald, citing McGonagall’s control over Hogwarts.

“Don’t worry about it, Vinda. How about the rat we’ve planted between the Phoenix Orders?”

Grindelwald reassured her and inquired about the exposure of their hidden phoenix ally.

“I believe they are doing their job well, but I don’t know much about it…”

Rosier remained uncertain but believed that the phoenix had been revealed.

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Published On: November 28, 2023

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