Friends: A Slytherins Guide To Bribery, Extortion, And Exploitation

This life-changing book will take you through: the simplest and quickest means to obtain friends; the ways in which said friends can be used to your advantage; and the proper way to cash in on the investment you have made in these companionships.

*Please note that this book is the work of a true Slytherin, though editing was outsourced to a Ravenclaw. As one does.

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What Is A "Friend?"

Chapter 2

What is a friend?

What is a friend?

Now that I have your attention, you may be wondering if you really know what you're getting yourself into and if you possess the wit to comprehend the rest of this text. I’m sure you've heard many definitions of the word “friend” in your life but for the purposes of this book we will use this term in a very precise manner.

“A friend is another witch or wizard who has the potential to improve your life financially, politically, or physically.”

Now, let's break down this definition into its functional parts and explore further.


Investments in people, like those in companies, can yeild impressive returns. The key is to find the correct “stock” to buy. Those who are, or those related to powerful wizards in business may carry with them subtle connections and inside information on various aspects of their company and any rival companies. If you see a future for yourself as an investor in magical enterprises, a concrete connection from your school days may be just what you need to determine how much gold to put forward. In addition, such business ties will only strengthen your friendship, and may lead you to new connections with other powerful people.

If you have aspirations to run a company of your own, then the friendships you made in your school days may help you to pull off mergers that are extremely beneficial. Take, for example, the elusive owners of the most secretive and powerful transportation company in the Wizarding World: Floo-Pow. How do you think Franklin Hersing, head of Hersing Co — specializing in the integration of muggle computing concepts within Wizarding society — was able to buy the rights to the new powder formula that he suitably named “Inter-Webs?” But of course, the owner was an old schoolmate1 who had inherited the Floo-powder company from his father. Mr. Hersing made a smart ally as a child, and with careful maintenance, remained friends with him into adulthood. His actions early on allowed him to summon incredible results in his future.

In the past decade, Inter-Webs powder has changed the very fabric of Wizard society. With just a small pinch of the blue dust one can access the superior equivalent of the muggle “internet” even when living in Wizarding towns and schools.2 Now, whether this change has been for the betterment or detriment of our way of life is up for some debate, but the bottom line for Mr. Hersing remains: He is now the wealthiest Wizard in Europe.

If you are reading the digital version of this book, then this should not be surprising to you; you will have used a pinch of Inter-Web to even access these pages. How many times have you reached for a bag to turn on the tellybision, to connect to the internets, or even to make use of the modern conveniences of a mirko-wave? Mr. Hersing saw the marketing potential in a powder that could create a portal of space and knowledge immune to anti-muggle charms. He understood the usefulness of the product better than his good friend, the owner of Floo-Pow, ever could have. If he had not had that connection, he might have never even been shown the product, and then you would not be reading a digital copy of any book... unless you were brave enough to venture into a muggle city internets cafe.3

You need to recognize when you find that one perfect financial opportunity and cash in on the friendship you have built. Franklin Hersing knew and acted without hesitation.


This point is, of course, the most obvious advantage. At your time in school, getting to know the children of important ministry officials can help create situations where, for little to no effort on your part, you accumulate perceived debts owed. A small favor in your school days can create the gratitude from your peers necessary for opening real-world opportunities; a borrowed quill may help you bend the will of the law in your favor. That mining operation in Tibet where your house-elf workers maintain a 95% mortality rate? It may just be overlooked if you kept your school pal’s obsessive Hufflepuff crush a secret for a few years. Doing for your peers what is widely known in today's language as a “solid” may seem, in your naive young minds, insignificant in the scope of larger things. However, the sense of debt will remain in a peer you've convinced to be your friend and bigger favors can be asked in return. It’s true, Arithmancy proves that these small beginnings can compound exponentially into future gains.

This concept of doing a “solid” can make your friends useful in a monetary and physical way as well — it is in no way limited to political favors. The most extreme example of a debt owed that falls under a physical favor would be a life-debt. Life-debts are powerful magic and if you happen to be owed one there is nothing you couldn't ask for in return. However, a sniveling Slytherin knows better than to go out purposefully looking for danger. Please refrain from such drastic measures as they surpass what is expected of you in the “solid” theorem. Keep your end of the debt light and easy and the price your friends pay in return weighted heavily. This is a basic business principle that every young Witch or Wizard should know and I cannot emphasize enough: Small investments, big returns.

For example: There may come a day when you find yourself on the wrong side of a battle. Old friends could be coerced to fight beside you, even protect you, if they perceive that they owe you for a past action. That action could be as significant as saving their life (a life-debt), or as trivial as doing their detention for them so they could go to Hogsmeade with their girlfriend in fifth year. Which one sounds like a better deal on your part?

IMPORTANT NOTE: Friends obtained through the techniques outlined in this book will not be as susceptible to the “solid” theorem. If you try to bribe them, extort them with the threat of bodily harm, or exploit their weaknesses, they will suspect your motives and thus be less likely to perceive that they “owe” you anything. You do not want your hard work and sacrifices to be for naught. The “solid” theorem is the best option when seeking companions for the purpose of political gain.

If the “solid” theorem is not an option because of an inability to make friends by traditional means, then blackmail — a subcategory of extortion— may be your best alternative. You may often hear your parents talk about “friend(s) in the ministry.” Your father may say something similar to “How did we import that rare endangered black unicorn spleen from Russia? I have a friend in the ministry.” With age and wisdom you will one day come to understand that in this context, the term “friend” refers to someone in the political stage that can be utilized to obtain illegal objects with no consequences. It is also understood that this “friend” is maintained through advanced blackmail techniques or, in some cases, large sums of money. If your father has plans to import and sell that unicorn spleen, then he is using his friend for political power and financial gain. These special cases where friendship has double benefits are the most important to maintain.


Often this valuable friend functionality gets overlooked by the more intelligent movers and shakers. Where other people are concerned, many of you reading this book may see yourself as the chess master, moving the pieces anywhere you see fit. This is perfectly acceptable, but never forget: There may come a dark night when a pawn steps around the corner and aims an Unforgivable at your face. What will you do then? All the careful planning and cunning manipulation will be for nothing… unless you have a shield. Having a brawny Gryffindor or a less influential, troll-like Slytherin around to throw yourself behind while you cry for your mother like a snot-covered two year old just makes sense. In fact, my more recent studies4 suggest that Gryffindors are likely to fight off your attacker themselves, leaving you ample time to escape any sticky situation. A Gryffindor friend can be very handy indeed and should not be overlooked!

Of course, this is another situation where it helps to have a “solid” owed to you. As was explained in the last section many of the other methods of obtaining friends in this book may not apply, especially if dealing with honorable lions. However, though the exploitation of your less influential Slytherin classmates, you may have a way around a difficult “honest” friendship paradigm. In general, there are two types of Slytherins: those who have read this book, and those who have not. As was stated in the introduction, this is a very high-end book. It has a ridiculously posh cover. It's, like, really nice. So, we can conclude that those who are reading this book5 (particularly this far into it) are primarily of the more influential members of society. This being said, it should be no problem to locate larger, dumber, more easily manipulated Slytherins as they are the majority in their House. Perhaps your father owns the company their fathers work at. Perhaps your father has used extortion (another fantastic technique to maintain friendships with a physical protection payload; for more information, see Chapter Four) on their fathers. Or perhaps your father is higher ranked in a secret evil organization bent on world domination. Utilize your family’s power to gain the unwavering allegiance of these dim-witted peers. They will see an alliance with you, the cunning offspring of a powerful Wizard, as an asset for themselves.6 Even if the risk to their own lives is great, they often won't realize it until you've managed to get to safety yourself. With the label of “friendship” comes a certain level of trust, and that trust, too, can be exploited to the fullest to protect yourself.


1 We were unable to determine the name of this contact by the time this book went to magic press. It is important to note that keeping your contacts’ secrets can be a prudent act for both parties. See “owed debts” for more information.

2 I know muggle studies are, for the most part, a waste of time, but they are often good for a laugh. Did you know that muggles need to have their computers hooked up to each other with a series of cables in order to communicate? And that they have to pay for this service even when (more often than not) it moves at a snail’s pace? In 30 years they haven’t been able to accomplish what we’ve done in five. Clearly the inferior race.

3 This is not recommended. Sources indicate that the mudblood stench is palpable and that it is nearly impossible to determine if cafe frequenters are actually alive without using a Detect Life spell.

4 Please contact me directly for details and factual evidence. I love to be inundated with owls delivering messages to me by the thousands. You may even want to send 5 owls lest your message get lost in the flurry of feathers.

5 It should be noted that reading this book in the library as if you had purchased it yourself is not fooling anyone, especially if you are a duffer.

6 Be aware that other members of your peerage are reading this book and be wary of similar tactics being used against you, so this principle may go the other way. Keep your mind sharp and understand your target! Otherwise they might end up editing your book and make you look bad.

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