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“I’m going to open it,” said Harry, “and you will stab it. Straightaway okay? Because whatever’s in there will put up a fight. The bit of Riddle in the Diary tried to kill me.” “How ar puma trainers for men e you going to open it?” asked Ron. He looked terrified “I’m going to ask it to open, using Parseltongue,” said Harry. The answer came so readily to his lips that thought that he had always known it deep down: Perhaps it had taken his recent encounter with Nagini to make him realize it. He looked at the serpentine S, inlaid with glittering green stones: It puma trionfo uk shops was easy to visualize it as a miniscule snake, curled upon the cold rock. “No!” said Ron. “Don’t open it! I’m serious!” “Why not?” asked Harry. “Let’s get rid of the damn thing, it’s been months –” “I can’t, Harry, I’m serious – you do it –” “But why?” “Because that thing’s bad for me!” said Ron, backing away from the locket on the rock. “I can’t handle it! I’m not making excuses, for what I was like, but it affects me worse than it affects you and Hermione, it made me think stuff – stuff that I was thinking anyway, but it made everything worse. I can’t explain it, and then I’d take it off and I’d get my head straight again, and then I’d have to put the effing thing back on – I can’t do it Harry!” He had backed away, the sword dragging at his side, shaking his head. “You can do it,” said Harry, “you can! You’ve just got the sword, I know it’s supposed to be you who uses it. Please just get rid of it Ron.” The sound of his name seemed to act like a stimulant. Ron swallowed, then still breathing hard through his long nose, moved back toward the rock. “Tell me when,” he croaked. “On three,” said Harry, looking back down at the locket and narrowing his eyes, concentrating on the letter S, imagining a serpent, while the contents of the locket rattled like a trapped cockroach. It would have been easy to pity it, except that the cut around Harry’s neck still burned. “One… two… three…open.” The last word came as a hiss and a snarl and the golden doors of the locket swung wide open with a little click. Behind both of the glass windows within blinked a living eye, puma trainers for men dark and handsome as Tom Riddle’s eyes had been b puma outlet uk efore he turned them scarlet and slit-pupiled “Stab,” said Harry, holding the locket steady on the rock. Ron raised the sword in his shaking hands: The point dangled over the frantically swiveling eyes, and Harry gripped the locket tightly, bracing himself, already imagining blood pouring from the empty windows. Then a voice hissed from out the Horcrux. “I have seen your heart, and it is mine.” “Don’t listen to it!” Harry said harshly. “Stab it!” “I have seen your dreams, Ronald Weasley, and I have seen your fears. All you desire is possible, but all that you dread is also possible….” “Stab!” shouted Harry, his voice echoed off the surrounding trees, the sword point trembled, and Ron gazed down into Riddle’s eyes. “Least loved, always, by the mother who craved a daughter… Least loved, now, by the girl who prefers your friend… Second best, puma speed cat black always, eternally overshadowed…” “Ron, stab it now!” Harry bellowed: He could feel the locket quivering in the grip and was scared of what was coming. Ron raised the sword still higher, and as he did so, Riddle’s eyes gleamed scarlet. Out of the locket’s two windows, out of the eyes, there bloomed like two grotesque bubbles, the heads of Harry and Hermione, weirdly distorted. Ron yelled in shock and backed away as the figures blossomed out of the locket, first chests, then waists, then legs, until they stood in the locket, side by side like trees with a common root, swaying over Ron and the real Harry, who had snatched his fingers away from the locket as it burned, suddenly, w discount puma hite-hot. “Ron!” he shouted, but the Riddle-Harry was now speaking with Voldemort’s voice and Ron was gazing, mesmerized, into its face. “Why return? We were better without you, happier without you, glad of your absence…. We laughed at your stupidity, your cowardice, your presumption–” “Presumption!” echoed th trionfo racing shoe e Riddle-Hermione, who was more beautiful and yet more terrible than the real Hermione: She swayed, cackling, before Ron, who looked horrified, yet transfixed, the sword hanging pointlessly at his side. “Who could look at you, who would ever look at you, beside Harry Potter? What have you ever done, compared with the Chosen One? What are you, compared with the Boy Who Lived?” “Ron, s puma trainers tab it, STAB IT!” Harry yelled, but Ron did not move. His eyes were wide, and the Riddle-Harry and the Riddle-Hermione were reflected in them, their hair swirling like flames, their eyes shining red, their voices lifted in an evil duet. “Your mother confessed,” sneered Riddle-Harry, while Riddle-Hermione jeered, “that she would have preferred me as a son, would be glad to exchange…” “Who wouldn’t prefer him, what woman would take you, you are nothing, nothing, nothing to him,” crooned Riddle-Hermione, and she stretched like a snake and entwined herself around Riddle-Harry, wrapping him in a close embrace: Their lips met. On the ground in front of them, Ron’s face filled with anguish. he raised the sword high, his arms shaking. “Do it, Ron!” Harry yelled. Ron looked toward him, and Harry thought he saw a trace of scarlet in his eyes. “Ron –?” The sword flashed, plunged: Harry threw himself out of the way, there as a clang of metal and a long, drawn-out scream. Harry whirled around, slipping in the snow, wand held ready to defend himself, but there was nothing to fight. The monstrous versions of himself and Hermione were gone: There was only Ron, standing there with the sword held slackly in his hand, looking down at the shattered remains of the locket on the flat rock. Slowly, Harry walked back to him, hardly knowing what to say or do. Ron was breathing heavily: His eyes were no longer red at all, but their normal blue: they were also wet. Harry stooped, pretending he had not seen, and picked up the broken Horcrux. Ron had pierced the glass in both windows: Riddle’s eyes were gone, and the stained silk lining of the locket was smoking slightly. The thing that had lived in the Horcrux had vanished; torturing Ron had been its final act. The sword clanged as Ron dropped it. He had sunk to his knees, his head in his arms. He wa trionfo racing shoe s shaking, but not, Harry realized, from cold. Harry crammed the broken locket into his pocket, knelt down beside Ron, and placed a hand cautiously on his shoulder. He took it as a good sign that Ron did not throw it off. “After you left,” he said in a low voice, grateful for the fact that Ron’s face was hidden, “she cried for a week. Probably longer, only she didn’t want me to see. There were loads of nights when we never even spoke to each other. With you gone…” He could not finish; it was now that Ron was here again that Harry fully realized how much his absence had cost them. “She’s like my sister,” he went on. “I love her like a sister and I reckon that she feels the same way about me. It’s always been like that. I thought you knew.” Ron did not respond, but turned his face away from Harry and wiped his nose puma shoes noisily on his sleeve. Harry got to his feet again and walked to where Ron’s enormous rucksack lay yards away, discarded as Ron had run toward the pool to save Harry from drowning. He hoisted it onto his own back and walked back to Ron, who clambered to his feet as Harry approached, eyes bloodshot but otherwise composed. “I’m sorry,” he said in a thick voice. “I’m sorry I left. I know I was a – a –” He looked around at the darkness, as if hoping a bad enough word would swoop down upon him and claim him. “You’ve sort of made up for it tonight,” said Harry. “Getting the sword. Finishing off the Horcrux. Saving my life.” “That makes me sound a lot cooler than I was,” Ron mumbled. “Stuff like that always sounds cooler than it really was” said Harry. “I’ve been trying to tell you that for years.” Simultaneously they walked forward and hugged, Harry gripping the still-sopping back of Ron’s jacket puma outlet online . “And now,” said Harry as they broke apart, “all we’ve got to do is find that tent again.” But it was not difficult. Though the walk through the dark forest with the doe had seemed lengthy, with Ron by his side, the journey back seemed to take a surprisingly short time. Harry could not wait to wake Hermione, and it was with quickening excitement that he entered the tent, Ron lagging a little behind him. It was gloriously warm after the pool and the forest, the only illumination the bluebell flames still shimmering in a bowl on the floor. Hermione was fast asleep, curled up under her blankets, and did not move until Harry had said her name several times. “Hermione!” She stirred, then sat up quickly, pushing her hair out of her face. “What’s wrong? Harry? Are you all right?” “It’s okay, everything’s fine. More than fine, I’m great. There’s someone here.” “What do you mean? Who –?” She saw Ron, who stood there holding the sword and dripping onto the threadbare carpet. Harry backed into a shadowy corner, slipped off Ron’s rucksack, and attempted to blend in with the canvas. Hermione slid out of her bunk and moved like a sleepwalker toward Ron, her eyes upon his pale face. She stopped right in front of him, he cheap puma r lips slightly parted, her eyes wide. Ron gave a weak hopeful smile and half raised his arms. Hermione launched herself forward and started punching every inch of him that she could reach. “Ouch – ow – gerroff! What the –? Hermione – OW!” “You – complete – arse – Ronald – Weasley!” She punctuated every word with a blow: Ron backed away, shielding his head as Hermione advanced.

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