“You may put your wands away,” she began, her voice made sharp with nerves. The startled groans alarmed her. Maeve knew they may have wanted to do some practical work, but she hadn’t expected such a strong negative response. “Just for today we will talk about the aims of this year, what we need to know in preparation for your N.E.W.T.s next year, and what we need to know given the current problems we face in the world outside of school. So I am sorry if you expected to come in here today and immediately have to defend yourself against hexes I threw at you, but…”
“Do you know any good hexes?” Malfoy said slowly with a huge smirk on his face. Maeve sighed, realising she would have to deal with Malfoy sooner rather than later. She turned to him, smiling sweetly.
“I do know some quite good hexes, Mr Malfoy.” She kept her voice as controlled as she could, but she was remembering his treatment of Harry in the bookshop; she just wanted to wipe that ugly leer off his face.
“Yeah right,” he mocked. “How to make someone howl at the moon!”
“Be careful, Mr Malfoy,” she said softly, irritation already beginning to get the better of her.
“Well, show us one then,” he goaded, tipping himself backwards on the chair in a deliberate gesture of defiance.
She withdrew her wand so quickly that no one knew what she was doing until she spoke.
“Eximere Quisquiliae,” she said loudly, and with the briefest of flashes the seat that Draco had been occupying was suddenly empty. There were loud, horrified gasps from the Slytherin half of the room, but the Gryffindors looked amused by this turn of events. Only Hermione put her hand up in concern.
“Yes, Hermione?” Maeve asked, wondering if she should really have hexed a student and just how dim a view Albus would take of the whole thing.
“Professor Lupin, Hogwarts has a lot of magic placed upon it that sometimes can interfere with transportation spells, especially those that are placed on humans.” Hermione looked a little amused despite her apparent concern.
“Really?” Maeve asked. “Do you think perhaps I should bring him back?”
This was starting to look bad. The spell had been one commonly used for removing rubbish to the rubbish bin so she had anticipated dumping Draco in the kitchen rubbish area, but this new information lent a certain unpredictability to the spell. In all her time at Hogwarts no one had ever mentioned anything about transportation spells going awry. She knew you couldn’t Apparate, but… she sighed to herself and raised her wand again.
“Contrarius Carmen,” she said quietly, pointing her wand at the place where Draco Malfoy had been, utilising a very useful little spell she had discovered years ago to undo any previous spells.
The smell was the first thing that hit them and the plain-faced girl recoiled in disgust as Draco plopped back into place. He was so full of indignation that he couldn’t speak, but his mouth was also full of an assortment of potato peelings, old newspaper and rotting fish heads, and this was hindering his speech somewhat. Maeve was struggling to fight back a laugh as several chicken bones slid greasily down the front of his robes. There was something that looked suspiciously like the congealing remains of beef hotpot in his hair. The Gryffindors were now hooting with laughter and even Harry had a smile on his face.
“Oh dear, Draco, how awful,” Maeve said with a feigned anxious expression on her face. “But you did ask for a demonstration.”
It was probably as well that Draco had a mouthful of rubbish because otherwise there was no doubt she would have had to take points of Slytherin for his use of several colourful swear-words.