Matthew couldn’t believe his luck.

Amidst such a crisis, he had been saved in such a straightforward manner.

Had Professor Rosier appeared later, or had other wizards loyal to Grindelwald been present, the outcome could have been entirely different.

Matthew couldn’t be certain that, even if he had been startled and unprepared, and even with the aid of the mysterious book, he couldn’t have stood against five or six seasoned adult wizards.

And even if they had managed to defeat them and escape, the subsequent situation would have been far from favorable.

With people aware of his visit to the Hog’s Head Bar, Matthew would effectively become a “social pariah.”

He would have to leave Hogsmeade, depart the wizarding world, and live in exile as an obscure wizard…

Such a life was undoubtedly fraught with difficulties.

Fortunately, Professor Rosier appeared under the moonlight on Hogsmeade Avenue, Matthew felt grateful to be in the company of someone as seemingly cold as Professor Rosier.

“If I recall correctly, you were working at Honeyduke Candy Shop over the summer, correct?” Professor Rosier stopped, glanced at Matthew, and spoke at a measured pace.

“Yes, Professor,” Matthew responded promptly and respectfully. “Thank you so much, Professor Rosier… I was terrified just now. I had no idea what was happening. I thought I was really about to be sent to Azkaban…”

Matthew had fully transformed himself into a frightened young boy, blurting out phrases like, “It’s dreadful… Azkaban is like hell, I’ve heard. I’m so fortunate that you arrived…”

“Yes, you are indeed fortunate,” Professor Rosier remarked, her mouth curving slightly in what appeared to be a touch of irony.

Matthew wasn’t entirely sure about the meaning behind her words.

For a while, he dared not respond.

The moonlight illuminated Hogsmeade Avenue, and the two of them remained motionless.

Professor Rosier didn’t glance at Matthew but rather at the bright moon above.

“Professor Rosier?” After nearly thirty seconds, Matthew couldn’t help but whisper.

“It’s disheartening,” Professor Rosier sighed.

“I can’t believe how deeply our corruption runs…”

This time, Matthew was taken aback.

“Werewolves… Vampires… Blackmailers… Butchers… Muggle sadists…” Professor Rosier continued, still not looking at Matthew but rather at the moonlit sky. “When I was younger, I would have used my wand to send them all to hell. But now, I have no choice but to cooperate with them…”

“…” Matthew suddenly found himself at a loss for words.

“It’s disheartening, don’t you think?” Professor Rosier repeated, her tone laden with bitterness.

Matthew felt that nodding in agreement was probably the most appropriate response…

“Do you believe they’re there to capture the remnants of the dark wizard?” Her voice now carried a hint of irony. “Impossible… Do you truly believe they don’t know? That bar was merely an ordinary one before. A simple, ordinary bar that has endured for over fifty years… Countless unsuspecting customers may have passed by at any time…”

“It’s because they know that they do this…” Professor Rosier shook her head. “Did you think they were pledging allegiance to Lord Grindelwald? No, they’re simply serving their own interests!”

“Ah, I see,” Matthew suddenly understood.

Before, something had struck him as peculiar… The Hog’s Head Bar had always been frequented by individuals of all backgrounds.

While it didn’t host many patrons, it certainly wasn’t lacking in visitors.

If wizards entering the Hog’s Head Bar were all destined for Azkaban, would it mean that one-third of the wizards in Hogsmeade would be incarcerated?

It now made sense that there was a deeper purpose behind this operation!

“It’s disheartening,” Professor Rosier reiterated for the third time. “Power, when placed in the hands of individuals like that, is used for nothing but abuse.”

“The new generation of Alliance are like this!”

“What’s even more disheartening is my need to seek our greatest interests in cooperation with such individuals.”

She finally spread her hands, and then fell silent.

Once again, the two of them stood in silence for a while, and Professor Rosier’s emotions seemed to ease somewhat.

“No lingering concerns, Wickfield?” Professor Rosier’s voice started to convey a bit more concern.

“I’m fine, Professor!” Matthew quickly assured her.

It seemed that she harbored no suspicions about him, much like the believers at the Hog’s Head Bar earlier.

At this point, Matthew’s mood had improved considerably.

Today’s situation didn’t appear to be as dire as he had initially thought!

“Head back and get some rest,” Professor Rosier instructed, waving him away. “Remember not to venture out recklessly during this time, especially in unsavory areas…”

“I understand!” Matthew nodded eagerly. “To be honest, I didn’t even want to come here originally. It was Madam Rosmerta who… She recommended this place to me.”

“I’ll inquire about that with Rosmerta later,” Professor Rosier said impatiently. “Let’s go now. You’re a good lad, and I believe Lord Grindelwald wouldn’t misjudge someone like you…”

Her voice alternated between heaviness and lightness. “In the future, strive to become an upstanding wizard. Don’t become like those who came before you… We’re all growing old, you know. The future belongs to you… Our greatest interests are ultimately achieved for your sake…”

“No, Professor, you’re still young…” Matthew retorted quickly.

Professor Rosier offered a faint smile.

“That’s just for show,” she murmured.

Then, her form dissipated into a black mist and vanished before Matthew’s eyes!

Read up to 40 Chapters ahead on my Patreon page!

Published On: December 8, 2023

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