Mark Reads ‘Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’: Chapter 25

In the twenty-fifth chapter of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, IS IT POSSIBLE FOR THIS BOOK TO GET ANY MORE UPSETTING? If you’re intrigued, then it’s time for Mark to read Harry Potter.


NO, SERIOUSLY. (Siriusly.) I don’t know how much more of this I can stand.

There’s a brief moment of joy at the very, very, very, very end of this chapter, but virtually everything up to it is ANGST and DISGRACE and MANGER and HORMONES and REALLY UPSETTING NEWS and WHY CAN’T GOOD THINGS HAPPEN. I should mention that I’m not really complaining about this, as I tend to gravitate towards fiction that makes me feel such strong emotions, but that also doesn’t mean I can’t THROW IN SOME UNNECESSARY CAPS LOCK TO BEST EXPRESS MY OWN FRUSTRATION.

Shall we talk about all the upsetting things in chapter 25?

#1: The Escape From Azkaban

We learn, via The Daily Prophet, that ten surviving Death Eaters have all broken out of Azkaban and are on the loose. In and of itself, this is wretched news for the Order of the Phoenix, as it strongly suggests that Lord Voldemort is gathering an army of sorts for some oncoming war. And he’s doing a good job at it, since, according to the last chapter, Harry could sense that Voldemort felt extreme joy at something that had happened.

But the news is even worse when the culprit is named (sans any proof, of course): Sirius Black.

I keep forgetting that, aside from a handful of principal characters, the entire wizarding AND Muggle world believes Sirius Black is a dangerous, murderous criminal. And so, even in that context, it does sort of make sense that the Ministry of Magic would tell The Daily Prophet that they believe Sirius is behind the mess. That being said…we all know the Ministry is more interested in protecting itself and its power, not working in the best interest of wizards.

I’m intrigued to see how Sirius’s storyline pans out.

#2: Broderick Bode is murdered.

What the shit guys. WHAT THE SHIT! I don’t believe for a second that the Devil’s Snare on his bedside was an accident, so…who put it there? Are they trying to warn…I don’t even know? I can’t even guess why this happened. IT IS TERRIBLE, THOUGH. He was making progress. ::weeps uncontrollably::

(Slight side note: Bode worked in the Department of Mysteries. OH SHIT.)

#3: Hagrid is on probation.

FUCK YOU, DOLORES UMBRIDGE. I hope a fucking meteor lands on you and turns you into space dust.

#4: Education Decree Number Twenty-Six

No, I was totally serious about wishing a violent death on you. So now teachers are not allowed to have any sort of conversation with their students that does not pertain directly to their class? And when Lee Jordan calls you out on this, YOU MAKE HIM DO THAT TERRIBLE QUILL THING? Just die already.

#5: Harry’s Occlumency lessons are causing his scar to hurt daily.

So. So. So. Horrible. And Ron suggest that perhaps Snape isn’t building up Harry’s defenses; he’s breaking them down to best help the Dark Lord. The three of them get into a sort of argument, and Hermione says the following:

  • “Dumbledore trusts him,” repeated Hermione. “And if we can’t trust Dumbledore, we can’t trust anyone.”


#6: Harry’s date with Cho Chang.

UTTER. FUCKING. DISASTER. Hermione asks Harry to meet up with him about something SUPER SECRET during their trip to Hogsmeade; Harry is reluctant to agree, especially since he doesn’t know what time his date with Cho will end, but he ends up saying he’ll go.


I’m still struggling with how I feel about this whole thing. On the one hand, I completely understand that everyone’s been shortchanging and ignoring how Cedric’s death has affected Cho and I think she has every right to want to find some outlet for that. I actually think it’s pretty mature and healthy for her to do this; it shows she understands, at least at a base level, what’s going on inside her brain.

That said…I do think it’s also kind of fucked up that she expects Harry to ignore his own trauma to comfort her. And it’s kind of fucked up that she certainly gives the appearance that she is pursuing him almost solely on this fact.

I think I’ll wait to see more before I formulate any solid opinions; in the meantime, JESUS CHRIST WHAT AN AWFUL SCENE IN MADAM PUDDIFOOT’S. I literally do not believe that scene could have played out in a more embarrassing way.


And now, for a change of pace!


Hermione is controlling Rita Skeeter.

I can’t begin to anticipate how this is going to play out, but I think it’s pretty goddamn amazing that she organized an effort to get Harry’s side of the story told AS IT HAPPENED and not twisted through the Ministry propaganda of The Daily Prophet. I was even more impressed by the brief discussion they had regarding the real aim of the paper: to sell copies, not to tell the truth.

I LOVE IT. IN YOUR FACE, RITA SKEETER. Oh shit, this is getting so real, guys. Ok. ONWARD TO MORE READING.