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... "You're - you're not a hoax, then?"

It had been his last, desperate hope.

"No," said Fudge gently. "No, I'm afraid I'm not. Look."

And he had turned the Prime Minister's teacup into a gerbil.

"But," said the Prime Minister breathlessly, watching his teacup chewing on the corner of his next speech, "but why - why has nobody told me - ?"

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

I'm not quite sure what "the corner of his next speech" means exactly. Any ideas?

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The PM is drinking tea and with the written or printed copy of his next speech in front of him—presumably he's working on it. When the teacup is turned into a gerbil it looks for possible food and is now chewing on a corner of the paper.

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