The hardwood boards of the stage were splintering up in all directions, it sounded like a hundred trees coming down, all at once as the wood was torn apart. Up through the exploding floor, came two gigantic, Blue Ridgeback dragons, a witch sitting astride the back of each one.

They came through so fast that they nearly crashed into the high vaulted ceiling of the Great Hall before leveling out and diving back down towards the crowd below.

The terrified students were scrambling to get underneath the heavy oak tables, while the teachers sprang into action. Barnabas and Serpenter jumped on their brooms, chasing the dragons, their birds pulling ahead of them. Horace and Belzar swooped up and around to the top of the dragonsí heads, then with talons and beaks, began trying to blind the beasts.

While their birds worked on those big eyes, the men conjured nooses around the snouts and yanked them tight. Then using their wands, caused the free ends of the rope, to wrap itself around and around their long snouts, creating a braided muzzle that not only stopped the fire, but cut off their air supply.

As the blinded, suffocating dragons began their twisting, spiraling fall, the riders leaped off of their dying mounts and started flitting around the Great Hall on brooms, flinging deadly spells toward the teachers and the few students that had yet to get under one of the tables.

What the riders didnít know was that Ms. Birch and the Head-Mistress had prepared a surprise for them, working together they had woven a spell that not only shielded everyone on the floor, but reflected those same murdering spells back upon the witches that had cast them.

As the returning spells engulfed the dark clad witches, they seemed to age a hundred years in a few seconds, then they simply turned to dust. The now rider-less brooms, dropped heavily to the floor, the empty robes floating down lightly behind them.

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