Slytherin’s first-year freshmen, led by their prefect Gemma Farley, hurriedly left the auditorium.
Along the way, they encountered a chaotic scene with people rushing in different directions, and the situation around the entire auditorium looked a little messy.
Fortunately, some teachers took the initiative to stand up and maintain order.
As they squeezed through a group of confused Hufflepuff students, Draco ran after Matthew and asked softly, “What’s the matter?”
On the other side, Theodore chimed in with a low voice, “Is there another attack?”
“It’s unlikely,” Matthew shook his head, expressing doubt.
“The Halloween dinner is mandatory for all students, so it’s rare for a single student to be attacked. And based on Professor Kettleburn’s messy appearance earlier, most of them seem to have come from outside the castle.” Matthew explained.
Matthew pondered secretly, considering the heavy rain outside and the fact that students wouldn’t need to shower outside if they secretly escaped the dinner party.
His thoughts wandered to the drained Unicorn in the Forbidden Forest and Professor Kettleburn’s flustered state.
Could it be that a magical creature in the Forbidden Forest was attacked? If so, it must be a more powerful magical creature.
He even speculated about the Vampire lurking in the castle, suggesting that Professor Grindelwald turned his attention to the Forbidden Forest due to his hesitation in the castle.
Suddenly, a scream broke the silence ahead. It was Vincent Crabbe, who had collided with someone as he turned around the corner.
“Use your eyes!” Vincent shouted roughly.
“Wait!” Matthew intervened, stopping the escalating tension.
Vincent obediently nodded and retracted his hand that was about to strike. Matthew stepped forward to help the fallen little boy, Harry Evans, up from the ground.
“Evans, are you okay?” Matthew asked softly.
As Matthew handheld Evans, the boy seemed to shiver noticeably and quickly broke free from Matthew’s grasp.
“No—Yes…” Evans whispered. “Thank you, Wickfield.”
Surprised, Matthew asked, “Why are you here? The path clearly leads to the Slytherin common room.”
Evans lowered his head and, in a voice on the verge of tears, apologized, “I was following our prefect Percy Weasley but got separated in the crowd. I bumped into people and ended up here without realizing it.”
Matthew nodded understandingly and glanced around, searching for a passing teacher who could assist Harry in returning to the Gryffindor common room. Coincidentally, he spotted someone familiar.
“Professor Trocar!” he called out.
“Wickfield?” The transfiguration teacher briskly approached. “What’s the matter? You should return to your common room.”
Matthew introduced Harry to Professor Trocar, saying, “This is Harry Evans from Gryffindor.”
“Of course, I know him. Hello, Evans!” greeted Professor Trocar.
Harry responded in his quiet voice, “Hello, Professor.”
“Evans got separated from their prefect. Professor, could you send him back to the Gryffindor common room?” Matthew requested urgently.
“Of course!” Professor Trocar agreed, nodding. “Come with me, Evans.”
Harry glanced back at Matthew before following the transfiguration teacher’s lead.
“It’s time for us to go, Matthew!” Miss Gemma urged from the front, with the rest of the Slytherin group waiting at the nearby corner.
“Okay!” Matthew nodded, and he quickly followed their footsteps.
As they walked in the basement corridor, Draco whispered to Matthew, “Which house that girl belongs to?”
Matthew blinked, slightly taken aback, and retorted, “Girl? Did you not see clearly? That was obviously a boy!”
“No, no, no!” Draco shook his head confidently. “That’s definitely a girl. I can tell by her movements.”
“But he is really a boy,” Matthew explained, raising his hands helplessly. “He’s from Gryffindor.”
“Oh, well…” Draco dismissed the topic with a nonchalant shrug, showing little interest.
The Slytherin common room was just within reach as they reached another intersection.
However, Matthew’s frown deepened as he realized something was amiss.
He had been interrupted by Draco earlier, but now, after pondering for a moment, he sensed that something wasn’t right.
Matthew hadn’t paid much attention when they attended the Halloween dinner in the auditorium, but upon reflection, he remembered that most of the teachers at Hogwarts were present.
However, Professor Trocar seemed to be absent from that list. Additionally, he noticed that Professor Trocar’s clothes looked clean and newly changed, yet his hair was slightly damp as if he had recently washed it but hadn’t thoroughly dried it.
More importantly, Matthew recognized that Professor Trocar had appeared near the location of the previous attack, close to the potions classroom.
It struck him that there was a connection.
Something was off.
“No… No, No, No! That can’t be right…” Matthew murmured to himself.
Matthew shook his head, his expression turning solemn. He felt that he had uncovered a puzzle piece that didn’t fit the expected picture.
“What are you waiting for, Matthew? Come in!” Draco called him.
The other students before him have already entered the room.
“Sorry,” Matthew apologized with a polite smile, then quickly entered the Slytherin common room.
The warm glow of the emerald green fire washed away their tiredness, but Matthew’s mind remained consumed by his suspicions.
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