A badly written answer could be the difference between an Exceeds Expectations and an Acceptable. Books were piled up on the table Hermione Granger was studying at and her eyelids were drooping. However, she refused to fall asleep. To fall asleep now would be something akin to a calamity.
She knew she should sleep, and tackle tomorrow’s exams with a fresh mind, but as soon as the notion of sleep crossed her mind, she started to panic.
Unbidden, the Defence Against the Dark Arts exam from third year crossed her mind. She had learnt that her worst fear was failure
. This fear would keep her awake if she tried to sleep, so she double and triple checked facts in the tomes littering the table.
She should have done her NEWTs last year, but Hogwarts had been closed down, as a school could not possibly run with something like thirty pupils enrolled. Now the war was over, and the school had been reopened. And now Hermione Granger was facing exams.
There were times during the last year where she thought she was going to fail, that she would never be able to help Harry and their friends out of the various situations they had gotten into while Horcrux hunting. But they had not failed. They had succeeded. Voldemort was gone now.
Hermione had helped bring around the downfall of one of the most feared wizards of all time. Surely that should have been scarier than an exam
Her eyes closed, and suddenly she felt very tired. Surely a short nap wouldn’t hurt…
She woke up, wondering where she was. She rubbed her eyes, then realised she had fallen asleep at her table, studying. In a panic, she looked at the clock on the wall in the Gryffindor common room.
She jumped up, instantly alert. She had a few minutes to get down to the Great Hall for her very first exam- Defence Against the Dark Arts theory. She ran down all the stairs she encountered two at a time, huffing and puffing her way to the examination room. She took her seat at her desk, feeling not at all relaxed by her sleep, but feeling rather nervous. There must have been something that she had forgotten to check up…she was going to fail for sure.
Nearly turning up late for the examination had not helped soothe her nerves. She heard the examiner call out that they were to start. Hermione clutched the quill that had been laid on her desk, dipped it into the supplied bottle of ink, turned over the examination paper and proceeded to answer the questions. Then a tiny thread of doubt crept into her mind. She neatly crossed out her previous answers, and proceeded to write down all the wrong ones.