Dec 16, 2019 7:39 AM
Demon Cam in the Potterverse
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"Ooh, yes, that," says the girl, pulling a fancily carved stick out of her pocket. "And for a demonstration--wingardium leviosa!" She gestures with the stick, and the antique-looking tome lying open beside her lifts gently into the air. She guides it up to shoulder height, then grabs it and tucks it under her arm. 

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"If 'being the Heir of Slytherin' is a conjurable parameter and the circle doesn't have a binding in it, which it probably doesn't, then maybe? Who's Slytherin?"

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"Salazar Slytherin was one of the four Founders of Hogwarts. Someone claiming to be his Heir is petrifying muggleborns, possibly with magic he left hidden somewhere."

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"If they might only be claiming to be his heir then it's less likely I can accurately conjure them, I might get an actual descendant who innocently operates a tea shop or something while their identity is used by another party. Uh, can you describe in detail more about the petrifying, thing..."

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"It's been two students, a cat, and a ghost so far. They turn up unconscious, all stiff, like statues. Except the ghost, he turned grey and they had to blow him around with a fan. The teachers say there's a potion that might cure them, but it'll take all year to brew. And . . . right before the first attack, I heard a voice nearby, talking about how it wanted to kill, but I didn't see what was talking."

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"Name one of the students for me? Or the cat, I suppose."

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"Creevey. Colin Creevey."

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Little diorama of Colin Creevy at the time of his petrifaction?

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Kid holding a camera up to his face. Patch of floor and walls. Giant menacing snake head way bigger than the kid!

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"...you said he was petrified, not, uh, vanished without a trace into this here very obvious-looking giant snake?"

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"Bloody hell. . . . Of course Slytherin's monster would be an enormous snake."

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"Harry, this explains why you were the only one who heard the voice, it's because you're a parselmouth! But I've never heard of a snake that petrified people--I need to go to the library--" she looks back and forth between Cam and the door, torn between two information sources.

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"...do you also have a guess why nobody has seen the snake, because whatever a Parselmouth is I don't think I am one and I can see this, but maybe I have failed to conjure its invisibility gland, how should I know..."

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"Well, all the attacks have been on people who were alone, but if it's not invisible whoever's controlling it would have to have a really comprehensive knowledge of the castle to get it around without passing anyone. Can I get a copy of Magickal Serpentes of the Known World?"

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"I want to know where it is now," says the redheaded kid.

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Magickal Serpentes in the left hand. Snek and environs in the right hand.

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The girl grabs the book and grins like Christmas just got rescheduled to every Tuesday.

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In the other hand: he gets the whole snek this time, and wow has it got some fangs on it. Also neon yellow eyes. The environs looks for a moment like it might be a big metal pipe that intersects itself at several points, like a nineties video game with bad hitbox programming, then the fact that metal pipe walls aren't meant to occupy the same place simultaneously makes it fall to bits.

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"...well, that's... interesting," says Cam, looking at the bits of pipe. "Do you have any... Klein plumbing... around? It interpolated itself!"

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"The Hogwarts hallways don't always make sense. You can do down a series of flat corridors and wind up a floor higher. I guess the plumbing is the same way. And if it's in the pipes, that would explain why nobody's seen it."

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"How the blazes is it meant to have entered the plumbing? It's huge! Even if Colin's a kindergartener it's huge!"

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"Colin's a first year, he's eleven. And it's supposed to have been hiding somewhere called the Chamber Of Secrets, maybe it's got a way to get something big in the pipes?"

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"The insides of the Hogwarts pipes expand to accommodate anything trying to move through them, so they can't get blocked. I read about it in Hogwarts, a History."

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"I suppose that's one way to avoid needing to do competent non-Klein civil engineering. Side question. Why is it called 'Hogwarts'. You're speaking English, it can't have escaped you."

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"Yeah, why is it called that?"

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