On the night of 27 July, 19971,
known in Harry Potter legendry as The Night of the Seven Potters,
Harry Potter and six other witches and wizards disguised as Harry
Potter left 4 Privet Drive in Little Whinging in the county of Surrey
for the Burrow. Harry Potter and I, in my cage, were riding in the
sidecar of Hagrid's motorcycle. (I should point out that I thought
at the time this was extremely ill-advised. I would much rather have
been freed and left to get to the Burrow by myself, but I was not
Shortly after we took off we were attacked by a large group of Death
Eaters. There was a great deal of confusion and the air was full of
flying curses. I saw a green light coming towards me and I must have
lost consciousness the next thing I remember is tumbling out
of my cage with debris, which I later discovered consisted of pieces
of the exploded side car, falling all around me.
(At the time I had no idea what had happened. Upon reflection I came
to the conclusion that my cage was hit by an Avada Kedavra curse 2
and the sidecar was almost immediately afterwards exploded by a Confringo
curse.3 This was later
confirmed by my friends in Hufflepuff, when they read to me the report
of the escape which appeared in Ms. Rowling's book.) (DH, Bloomsbury
I was in some pain and considerably disoriented, but I somehow righted
myself and began to flutter towards the ground. The attack took place
over London, which was fortunate since I, like any well-trained messenger
owl, have a working knowledge of the geography of the metropolis.
I have never liked night flying (although Ms. Rowling describes Snowy
Owls as nocturnal, we, in fact, are diurnal and prefer to fly and
hunt in the daytime 4 ),
but I was able to navigate safely to the nearest wooded space, which
happened to be Richmond Park, and settled into a sheltering tree to
rest and take stock of my situation.
I was bruised and singed and some of my wing and tail feathers were
missing, which made flying slower and more difficult. Still, I felt
that I was able to travel. The next decision was where I should go.
I had no idea if any of the Seven Potters had successfully reached
the Burrow or what had awaited them there. If Death Eaters were pursuing
Harry Potter, all those associated with him were threatened. I had
no intention of putting myself in harm's way again in my weakened
condition and therefore decided that my best course was to return
to Hogwarts, where I was sure that Hagrid would care for me.