This page offers a guide on how to complete the Portrait in a Pickle side quest in Hogwarts, which involves retrieving Ferdinand Octavius Pratt’s missing portrait. This page will also cover what you should do with Ferdinand’s portrait once you find it!
How to Start Portrait in a Pickle
In order to unlock this quest, you’ll need to have first completed In the Shadow of the Relic, which is one of the later quests in Sebastian Sallow’s relationship quest line. To begin this quest, you’ll need to locate Ferdinand Octavius Pratt’s portrait in the Library in Hogwarts school. When you speak to him, he’ll tell you that his second portrait, which was located at the Three Broomsticks Inn in Hogsmeade, was stolen by Astoria Crickett. He’ll ask that you help him locate his missing portrait.
The first place you’ll need to start is at The Three Broomsticks Inn in Hogsmeade. Here, you’ll have to speak to Astoria to get to the bottom of where the missing portrait is. She’ll tell you that she paid some Ashwinders to steal the portrait because Ferdinand snitches on students and is an arrogant “Pratt” (see what we did there?!).
Where to Find Ferdinand’s Missing Portrait
Your next task will be to head over to the enemy camp located in Marunweem Ruins, west of the hamlet of Marunweem. If you’ve already been this far south, you’ll be able to use a Floo Flame to cut your travelling distance!
Once at the camp, you’ll need to take out a whole host of Ashwinder enemies and Inferni. With the Inferni, don’t forget to use fire spells to break their initial spell invulnerability. And with the Ashwinder enemies, you’ll need to throw out specific colored spells depending on the color of their protego. There are also several throwable objects around so you shouldn’t have too much of a problem clearing out this area.
After all the enemies are defeated, locate the staircase that’s partially hidden behind a wall of barrels. There’s another set of stairs nearby but these won’t take you to where Ferdinand’s being kept.
Follow the stairs downwards to find Ferdinand’s portrait behind lock and key. This is a level II lock so you’ll need the second iteration of Alohomora to unlock it. Once you’ve solved the lock pick puzzle, speak to Ferdinand.
Should you put Ferdinand in the Hog’s Head or The Three Broomsticks?
Once again he’s very snooty and demands you take him back to The Three Broomsticks. Here you’ll get the option to do one of three things. You could return him to The Three Broomsticks and Ferdinand will be grateful, or you could choose “Returning you to The Three Broomsticks isn’t my only option” and then suggest taking him to the Hog’s Head instead. Ferdinand won’t believe you at first but after speaking with him, you’ll need to head to Hogsmeade and either place his portrait on a wall in Hog’s Head or The Three Broomsticks. The Hog’s Head seems like hell on earth for Ferdinand, so we think it’s quite fitting!
Should You Burn Ferdinand’s Portrait?
If you really really hate Ferdinand then there’s an even more extreme option than putting him in the Hog’s Head. Instead of returning the portrait to either of the Hogsmeade taverns, you could decide to burn it and stop Ferdinand’s snitching once and for all! Rather than suggesting to take him back to Hog’s Head or The Three Broomsticks, you could do the following dialogue pathway:
- “Returning you to The Three Broomsticks isn’t my only option”
- “I could burn you”
- “Very well. Burning it is.”
If you choose to do this, you’ll need to equip a burning spell (Confringo, Bombarda, Incendio) and set the portrait ablaze to complete the quest. A pretty brutal (but deserved?) ending to the quest! Whatever you choose to do with Ferdinand, you’ll earn the same reward: a conjuration recipe for the Oddities Shelf and +180 XP.