The portrait was a seascape, waves crashing against the shoals. Dark clouds rolled above the rough waters, lightning flashing in the distance. A lone owl perched on the apex of a rock, unmoving in the splash of the water's spray.

Harry stood before the portrait, unmoving like the bird. His gaze cast across the raging sea, seeing something unknown.

"Potter," Draco said, stopping beside him in the hall.

"Malfoy," Harry responded, without looking from the portrait.

Draco turned to the seascape, grey eyes searching for what had captured Harry's interest. Whitecaps crested the waves. The grey and white owl watched the rolling storm with the same intesity as the boy beside him. He could see nothing necessitating the intense scruitny Harry was giving it.

Draco frowned, glanced sidelong at Harry, and decided saying anything cutting might make him appear dumb if there was something about the portrait worth the interest.

"Potter," Draco said in exit.


Draco turned on his heel and walked away.

The sky in the portrait began clearing, the dark clouds blowing rapidly away. The water settled as the sun emerged, causing the sea to glitter brightly. The owl raised its wings and took flight.

Harry smiled, looked in the direction Draco had gone, then turned and went the other way.

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