She led them down a side street, then into the shelter of a shadowy alleyway.

“When you say you’ve got the Cloak, and clothes…” said Harry, frowning at Hermione, who was carrying nothing except her small beaded handbag, in which she was now rummaging.

“Yes, they’re here,” said Hermione, and to Harry and Ron’s utter astonishment, she pulled out a pair of jeans, a sweatshirt, some maroon socks, and finally the silvery Invisibility Cloak.

“How the ruddy hell—?”

“Undetectable Extension Charm,” said Hermione. “Tricky, but I think I’ve done it okay; anyway, I managed to fit everything we need in here.” She gave the fragile-looking bag a little shake and it echoed like a cargo hold as a number of heavy objects rolled around inside it. “Oh, damn, that’ll be the books,” she said, peering into it, “and I had them all stacked by subject… Oh well… Harry, you’d better take the Invisibility Cloak. Ron, hurry up and change…”

“When did you do all this?” Harry asked as Ron stripped off his robes.

“I told you at the Burrow, I’ve had the essentials packed for days, you know, in case we needed to make a quick getaway. I packed your rucksack this morning, Harry, after you changed, and put it in here… I just had a feeling…”

“You’re amazing, you are,” said Ron, handing her his bundled-up robes.

“Thank you,” said Hermione, managing a small smile as she pushed the robes into the bag. “Please, Harry, get that Cloak on!”

Harry threw his Invisibility Cloak around his shoulders and pulled it up over his head, vanishing from sight. He was only just beginning to appreciate what had happened.

“The others—everybody at the wedding—”

“We can’t worry about that now,” whispered Hermione. “It’s you they’re after, Harry, and we’ll just put everyone in even more danger by going back.”

“She’s right,” said Ron, who seemed to know that Harry was about to argue, even if he could not see his face. “Most of the Order was there, they’ll look after everyone.”

Harry nodded, then remembered that they could not see him, and said, “Yeah.” But he thought of Ginny, and fear bubbled like acid in his stomach.

“Come on, I think we ought to keep moving,” said Hermione.

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