Lazarus Churchyard: The Final Cut

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Immediately reminiscent of Transmetropolitan, Lazarus Churchyard watches a lady looking like a fella get fucked at the bar whilst someone else bleeds from their mouth, perhaps from drugs. Lazarus meets up with a skull-headed fella offering to kill him and get him wasted whilst they discussed the details. This dude offers a high quality death, Laz being for centuries old and wanting to go feet up by now. the deal was he must locate a missing scientist whom had the most knowledge about datasea, a VR which apparently was exploding some people’s heads. On top of this, the scientist was already dead, Laz taking the job from PJ Proby, whom was with Isis-Elek.

As PJ takes him through the Headquarters, he states how there was a VR “heaven” for those they couldn’t move forward with their projects without. PJ then shows Laz’s incentive, the machine scary-looking. Laz is attempting, a quiet lie-down when he must kick some hindering asses who’d walked themselves in (Holy fuck, the violence!). He’s escorted by PJ to another fella, whom updates what’d occurred to those programmers who’d gone searching for Bruckner. Then, Laz deduces they planned to stick in in the datasea, he pretty much only needing to go in and wonder to himself why he wasn’t seeing the heaven-like program, Bruckner interrupting his thoughts and taking him to a different part of the sys, assumably, “to talk”, which she does.

Once they see what PJ had done, she helps him back into his body and Laz spares PJ, for a short time until deciding to let Bruckner mess with him, instead. By the end of it, Bruckner accidentally screws him over, destroying the kill machine before Laz can do the deed. Laz has been stuck underground for more than 2 months, and when he breaks surface, a hoor greets him looking to party! She immediately leads him along, she catching Laz up on what he’d missed, the police disbanded and everyone living it up, since Isis-Elek blew. Laz knocks her out when he denies her further advances. She wakes up in time to explain her lil “pet”, it killing her, then apologizing and offering to explain, Laz curiously allowing this, and by the end of the monster’s diatribe, dreams of whether crazy ho’s deed for the club was lying around.

He discovers it, since he’s now owned the club over a year. He’s convinced by the monster book to tell his origin story, involving a 12-year-old looking plastic girl called Lucy. One of the scientists gets creepy screwy with her and by the end, she’s burned in a bed, but survives, even after being dumped in the sewer, she developing a way to cry for help, her message becoming the name of the club. Once she was found round about 40 years later, they put her down properly, making Laz much more durable than his predecessor.

Laz enters his club to be met by Angel Hellequin, whom Laz was excited to get drugs from as she attempts to catch up with him, he sprouting big breasteses. As he’s investigating his other bits in the bathroom, the toilet is inquiring about his pooping needs, on the wall, graffiti, “women need men like fish need bicycles.” He goes upstairs to consider how to reverse his lady bits when a vengeful lady, Justine comes in, Laz getting scary tits, not amused by her, at all. She ignores this to mention how Isis-Elek was still active and she’d joined, planning on keeping him captive within their experimental fancy, but he’s saved by Angel, more IE crew waiting downstairs.

They mess with the barman, though and it starts a fiery bar-fight. Laz is almost tricked into believing he’d killed his last ex, which leads to a memory when he’d been getting a beating by a trio of brothers. He turns the table on ’em once they want to set him up for bonfire status, taking out all 3 due to they not being bright boys. 4 centuries later, an old woman watches the news and is eager to implement revenge.

Laz is then shown viewing a lady’s man-like body lying on the bar, he recognizing the name on the knife after the body was removed, an Inspector Sleep arriving and impressed Laz’d be so calm as death approached him. Laz finally becomes impressed when Sleep starts throwing punches at him, they making ouchies and realizing this fool was reinforced not as strongly, but still impressively, as himself. He beats him til Sleep flees, Laz’s boobies gone by now, he knowing Sleep’d be back if his final shot hadn’t killed him, which he realizes is the case when the fool comes back in a fly ship with guns strafing.

This doesn’t save him though, Laz shooting him in 2, but fella survives, so Laz has his barman store him in the cellar. He then has the ship take him to it’s home base in Spain. When he meets the Lizaran organization mostly nakie weapon-toting crew, he tries out his memory-gathering skill, realizing the old woman had been pretty much leaching off of the fam’s parts as well as empaths. Laz doesn’t make her feel placated when noting how stingy she’d been when giving her 3 sons a single grave. He continues with how she’d done terrible things to the empaths for her own longevity, he reaching her, and she ready with a bomb about to go off, it decimating the area to rubble and sand, Laz wandering his way back quite nakie, himself.

30 years have passed and Laz is in Iceland talking of his mother to a stripper. Laz’s hometown is in Germany and his pop was a perv from London, he reminiscing how his parents had met and they being the perfect fit for each other, but his pops being found by a London cop ready to kill his girl and him. He makes it back to her in time to plant lil Laz in her, then croaking, Laz telling this sad, disgusting love story to a dead girl.

Fucking grand! Ellis is the bomb!

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Year Seven)

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Snape joins Voldemort with the other Death Eaters at Malfoy’s home to discuss Harry’s next move, false news having been created to mask Harry’s actual plan. Lucius has gotten out of prison by this point and had to relinquish his wand to Voldemort to use on Harry (an even more unnecessary “that” being added to a sentence, Rowling? Jeez..). A professor of Muggle studies is killed after Voldemort seethes and makes fun of the Malfoys’ relative, Tonks marrying Lupin.

Harry was currently at Privet drive unloading his school trunk and packing a backpack with all important items. He also has 2 articles, one Dumbledore’s obituary and the other an interview with Rita Skeeter about her biography on Dumbledore’s life and how dirt-filled it truly was. Vernon was flip-flopping with whether he truly believed he and his family were in danger, but Dudley was scared enough to want the magical protection offered them, so they’d be escorted to a safe spot. Dudley surprises all relatives with his concerns for where Harry was going, but everyone’s farewell being fairly underwhelming, but Dudley shaking his hand in the end being the most contact made through it all.

Moody was whom Harry thought would be escorting him, but it turns out to be Hagrid along with his buddies and others, including Mood himself. This doesn’t help much though, since they were met with 30-odd Death Eaters flinging deadly curses at all of them, Harry being repeatedly reassured by Hagrid of having everything handled, thusly Harry’s sidecar detaches from the motor-bike and during all this, Hedwig has been shot and was limp. Harry blows up his sidecar, supposedly with Hedwig still inside, he now seated with Hagrid as a Death Eater recognizes Harry to be not a poser, the 3 disappearing. Voldemort soon joins them, but not before Harry crashes the bike into a pond. The 2 make it to their Portkey to the Burrow and the only others to show up so far is Lupin and George, whom lost an ear. In the end, everyone returns except for a dead Moody and a biffed off Mundungus.

Harry wanted to leave them for fear of endangering them further, he getting a vision of Ollivander at the bad end of Voldemort’s rage, Hermione desperate he attempt to shut his mind from this. Mrs. Weasley attempts to learn what Dumbledore had ordered Harry to do, which also includes Ron and Hermione dropping out of school to help, but the most she gets is agreement to help tidy and do chores she had for them for the wedding. They weren’t able to recover Moody’s body, so the funeral was on hiatus. The trio found time to talk, Ron suspecting Moody may have survived. They then discuss Hermione’s acquiring Hogwarts library books on horcruxes, when Mrs. Weasley interrupts, mega-pissed the three were sitting around rather than helping her with chores. When Fleur’s family arrives, the trio get only one chance to speak, Mrs. Weasley still thwarting their plan-making and she putting together, what Harry hopes would be a quiet birthday the day before Fleur and Bill’s wedding.

Harry gets a good amount of birthday prezzies, he particularly taken with Ginny’s snog gift. Scrimgeour crashes to speak with the trio about Dumbledore’s will and the unique items he’d left them. Harry receives his first won snitch and was supposed to get Gryffindor’s sword, Hermione got a book, and Ron was gifted a contraption which put out lights. Harry figures out a clue on how to use the snitches memory ability, but it isn’t easy to decipher from there, Hermione confesses she not having heard of the book she’d be given, to Ron’s surprise, since he knew them as children’s tales.

Harry was disguised as a cousin to the Weasley’s after they’d acquired some hair from a local redheaded boy. Luna and her father had been invited, he acting and looking as eccentric as his daughter normally would. Then, after Harry discovers Dumbledore’s family had Godric’s Hollow in common with him, they discover Scrimgeour had been killed and the Ministry “fallen”, them’s coming. (Decent dramatics by this point)

The trio escape by disapparating as Death Eaters break up the party, Hermione providing the boys with less conspicuous attire. They are followed and eventually attacked again by a couple Death Eaters. After the trio defend themselves and flee to Harry’s inherited property, he gets a vision of Voldemort punishing one of the Death Eaters who had attacked them, by ordering Draco to torture him.

They learn R.A.B. was Sirius’ brother after Harry discovers a part of a letter from his mother. They also realize they’d handled a locket during past clean up of Sirius’ home, they off to Kreacher’s quarters. They discover nothing and when Harry summons Kreacher to grill him, they learn Mundungus had filched it all. Kreacher relates what he remembered of the locket, then Harry nicely orders him to retrieve the real locket and Mundungus to meet them back there, taking a tip from Hermione and even gifting the fake locket to Kreacher as incentive and appreciation.

The 3 are up to day 3 of waiting for Kreacher’s return when they see 2 robed men standing outside for quite some time, but not going any further, everyone inside attempting to quell nerves and boredom. Harry is first to see a figure enter the house, it t’were Lupin, they catching up. By the end, Harry had insulted Lupin in order for him to hopefully go back to Tonks, they learning she was up the duff and he was plagued by his status and how it’d effect his newly made family. Harry then reads an excerpt from Skeeter’s book after Lupin runs off, pissed. Kreacher returns with Mundungus, whom reveals he’d practically gifted the locket to Umbridge.

Harry brings back a Daily Prophet with news of Snape securing the title of headmaster, Ron and Hermione shocked. Harry then renews his idea of implementing the plan they’d worked out for 4 weeks. They each obtain a Ministry employees hair and polyjuice themselves for entrance purposes. Hermione and Harry meet Umbridge in the elevator after Ron was tasked with stopping a flood in a particular office. Harry is then separated from Hermione when Umbridge uses her for a court proceeding and he’s left with the new Ministry of Magic, Thicknesse, not being conspicuous and parting ways with him before covering himself with invisibility cloak again and creating a distraction which allowed him access inside Umbridge’s office, he not having learned from his Hogwarts snooping to leave his cloak ON when he’s searching, again scrambling to cover his ass up as Thicknesse enters.

Harry makes his way out with no discovery before learning what they had on Arthur. He makes his way to the courtrooms where a shit ton of dementors were chilling in the hall with the accused muggles, he making it inside the courtroom Hermione sat in with Umbridge, they seeing the locket around Umbridge’s fat neck. Harry throws caution to the dogs and stupefies the old hound so as to snatch the locket, Hermione making a replica so she wouldn’t immediately notice, and saves the half blood witch on trial for being muggle-related. The trio along with the muggle bunch escape, but Harry notices an odd sensation after they apparate since by the end it was becoming obvious what they were doing.

Hermione conducts first aid on Ron’s arm, they now stuck in the forest where the World Cup had been, Yaxley having seen the trio’s hidey hole she setting protective charms about them whilst Ron recovered. They then fool around with the locket to attempt opening it, none succeeding and so Harry resigns himself to keep watch with Hermione off and on. Harry gets another vision, he still having given up Occlumency despite Hermione harping on how he should still at least attempt to bar him mind and instead chooses to get pounded by the scenes, he rather preferring sharing the visions with his buds (he’s tho thmart!), overcome with whomever stole an item from Gregorovitch which Voldemort was now after, Harry recognizing the face in his memory, but unable to currently place it. (This seems to be a going theme and mystery style of Rowling’s, which I’ve grown tired and yet accustomed, *sigh*)

During their passed off time wearing the horcrux and negative moods because of it, they hear Dean Thomas with Tonks’ pops and some goblins (Rowling, you suggesting a Goblin language be named, Gobbledegook??…) eating nearby their camp, learning Ginny had attempted to lift Gryffindor’s sword, the goblins confiding the one protected in Gringotts being a fake. Ginny did get one helluva punishment, though, according to the goblin, they also discussing whether Snape or Harry was the baddie, as well as The Quibbler now being the one spot for real news. They move off and Hermione grabs the frame of Phineas Black to inquire about the sword, which reveals why they needed it to destroy horcruxes. They end the night with a blow out of a fight between Ron and Harry, the former off to his family and Hermione brokenhearted by Ron making her stay seem like betrayal of him.

The two hoped silently Ron’d return, but this doesn’t occur, Harry reminded how Ron had assumed Harry had a ginormous master plan (the fuck?), and he seeing if Ron’d go to Hogwarts again, his name not appearing on the Marauder’s Map. After some more move-abouts, Harry suggests once more they go to Godric’s Hollow, Hermione agreeing this time. They prepare with Polyjuice disguises and see the graveyard first. They visit Dumbledore’s family graves, Hermione locating another symbol on an unrelated grave, and they take a moment to visit Harry’s parents, leaving with Harry at least getting to see where they were.

After suspecting they were being watched, the quickly leave and somehow spot Harry’s first home. Bagshot finds them and leads them back to her place, he nicking a pic of the man whom had stolen from Gregorovitch and then Bagshot becoming Nagini before Voldemort was to arrive. The two barely escape, but Harry’s wand is broken and loses the pic in their haste, Harry stuck in Voldemort’s thoughts most of the night.

Harry was starting to annoy himself at Dumbledore, rather than try solving the snitch and discover his next move. Hermione helps a bit by showing a copy of Rita’s book to Harry, he finally learning the man in the picture was Grindelwald. He and Dumbledore became buddies after he’d been expelled from Durmstrang. Harry has a flip out and Hermione recognizes he being mad Dumbledore hadn’t shared more with him. After they move, Harry sees a doe patronus which leads him to the Gryffindor sword, Ron saving him from drowning and Harry suggesting he destroy the horcrux. It gives Ron a good psychological beating, but he succeeds. Hermione gives Ron a more unceremonious welcome, but they settle after Ron explains how he’d used his deluminator. Since he’d also been able to swipe an idiot’s wand from a watch group for muggles, Harry was able to practice doing small spells, the results unappealing. Later on, Hermione decides she wanted to visit Luna’s father because of Grindelwald’s sign, Harry uncertain, but acquiescing, and upon being received, are greeted hesitantly. When Harry does finally get to his point, Luna’s papa reveals it’s a sign of the deathly hallows. Harry soon blunders to the knowledge Luna wasn’t there and her pop had informed the Ministry, Hermione devising and implementing the trio’s escape plan.

When they’d disapparated, Ron supposed the Death Eaters had Luna in Azkaban, but she’d be fine for now. Harry then considers if his defense would include the acquirement of the magical items of the Deathly Hallows. Ron and Hermione think he should focus on the horcruxes, but instead he dedicates his time in attempting to open the snitch, thinking the stone or ring could be inside. The one thing to get his thoughts away from this is Ron’s found pirate radio stating, they learning Ted Tonks was among the murdered by Death Eater recently. (Rowling’s way of allowing each character intro whom is speaking on the radio is goofy.) Hagrid was now an outlaw, as well, because of a Potter Party, the doofus, and the last dumb move Harry making being to say Voldemort’s name, they found out hella quick.

The trio are captured with Dean Thomas, Hermione having puffed Harry’s face up, Greyback and crew unable to identify them, yet, until discovering Gryffindor’s sword, they deducing Harry and Hermione’s identities. When Bellatrix sees the sword, she tortures Hermione on where they’d gotten it, thinking they’d stolen it from Gringotts. Meanwhile, Dobby apparates and saves Ollivander, Luna, and Dean, this getting attention, Ron and Hermione having to overpower Wormtail, but this ultimately killing him. Voldemort is finally summoned once the goblin confirms the sword counterfeit, Ron attempting and failing to save Hermione, but not being quick enough to dodge a knife and get kilt.

They have a quick burial and funeral for him in the garden of Bill and Fleur’s, Harry then speaking to the Gringotts goblin and Ollivander before Harry sees Voldemort claim the Elder wand Dumbledore had been buried with. Harry was torn by his decision to hang back rather than fight, in the meantime the goblin agreeing to help them in return for Gryffindor’s sword, Harry not specifying when, but would do the exchange. Lupin visits to announce Tonks and his son, Ted being born, and Bill warning Harry about dealings with a goblin being a sensitive thing if treasure is involved.

Hermione had been chosen to Polyjuice as Bellatrix what with having a hair of hers on her robe and also having the wand, but she having trouble controlling it. They still go through with their plan, Harry under invisible cloak with goblin and Ron disguised with face-feature changes, they running into Travers in Diagon Alley. It only gets worse from here, since he’s also going to Gringotts and it seemed the goblins were aware of Bellatrix’s stolen wand. They make it to the vault without being caught, though, instead now had to worry about making the contact with the treasure. This soon doesn’t matter, since it ends with all of them in contact with it, but Harry obtains the cup, but loses the sword, they escaping on the nearly blind dragon (yay!) and landing themselves in a lake some distance from the bank. Harry soon sees the results of Voldemort learning of Gringotts and his questioning whether his other horcruxes were safe; The trio soon aiming for Hogsmeade.

Upon arrival, they’re immediately known to be there due to a nifty alarm charm, Death Eaters looking around and almost catching them early upon arrival. After dementors are added to the search party, the Hogshead’s owner saves them by letter them inside the bar. Harry figures out he’s Aberforth, he feeding them and attempting to convince Harry to get far away as possible. Instead, he’s convinced somehow into detailing most of what’d happened to Ariana. She’d killed their mother accidentally after being abused by some boys in some way to make her ever use magic, it going wild within her and when she was 14, had an unfortunate episode resulting her mother’s death.

Aberforth was made to continue school by Dumbledore, he taking care of their sister until Grindelwald distracts him. Aberforth confronts Dumbledore about containing his ego in order to take of their sister rather than go off and gather a following in their new wizarding regime. The 3 end up fighting, Ariana attempts to help and 1 of the 3 kill her. Harry puts in his 2 cents when he mentions the horcrux charm he’d drank, the torture making him say when he felt worst about and his greatest fear, Neville then being brought when Aberforth acquiesces to helping them enter Hogwarts.

They go through a hidden tunnel behind Aberforth’s painting of his sister. Neville catches them up a bit on Snape’s disciplinary Carrows Death Eater professors, he also finally gets positive feedback form his Gran once she escapes and goes to ground so as to stay hidden, since escaping the Death Eaters’ attempts at using her as leverage on Neville. When they reach Hogwarts about 20 more peeps greet them uproariously. They’d made the Room of Requirement their safe haven, the Carrows unable to reach them. They were catching up when Harry learns Voldemort had discovered another horcrux destroyed, the group of kids desperate to be a part of helping overcome Voldemort, but Harry attempting to keep Dumbledore’s secret, Ron and Hermione then considering they could use their friends’ help without revealing the true nature of why, so Harry begins asking them questions about Ravenclaw items.

In the end, Luna leads Harry to the Ravenclaw statue where one of the Carrows catches him, touching her V (haha) tat. She’s knocked out by Luna’s curse, Harry then cursing her bro when he insults McGonagall. She then helps the two game plan the way to get students out of the castle and overthrow Snape before Voldemort comes, and Harry could search the grounds. Snape gets in McGonagall’s way, but flees by chucking himself out a window when she receives help from other professors. They soon are enlisting the help of other professors to protect the school temporarily from Voldemort, whilst getting everyone to meet in the Great Hall to give those the option to stay and help who were of age. Upon Harry getting back to the Req. Room, most of the Weasleys arrive, they surprised when Percy shows up as they’re trying to get Ginny to leave, but instead agreed to let her stay in the Req. Room, Voldemort now at Hogwarts as Harry’s looking for Hermione and Ron in the loo.

As McGonagall describes what would happen, Voldemort’s voice echoes through the hall to maintain resisting wouldn’t do any good and he didn’t desire offing anyone, he only wanted Harry. Since Voldemort wasn’t actually there, after dumb Pansy attempts to get Harry chucked out, McGonagall has them all leave with their Houses, she having to remind Harry of looking for the horcrux, since he’d been plagued with where Hermione and Ron could be. He comes to a lightbulb moment though, on whom to ask what had happened to the diadem, getting his answer through Nearly Headless Nick, he speaking with the Ravenclaw’s House ghost, Helen Ravenclaw, she stealing the diadem from her mother and how the Bloody Baron had killed himself because he’d stabbed and killed her.

Finally, she admits hiding the diadem in Albania, and Voldemort had brought it back to Hogwarts when he’d interviewed for a job. Harry is met by Hagrid (I realize now Harry could’ve been using “Tom” as his choice to call him the whole time to mock his name for himself, in a way, as Dumbledore had.), the fight being on by this point, since it’d reached midnight. Harry realizes where he needed to go, also spotting Ron and Hermione who’d gone to the Chamber of Secrets, Ron speaking Parseltongue by memory and stabbing the Cup, Harry ecstatic. Ron and Hermione give each other a good snog until Harry thrusts them back to Erf. They have the Room of Requirement become the place with everyone’s hidden treasures, Harry locating the diadem, but foiled by Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle.

Crabbe curses the place with a fire monsters thingy and Ron and Hermione have to save the 2 burkes, Crabbe getting himself kilt, but Harry also catching the diadem as it’d been falling down from a victory throw of treasure by the creatures. When they escape, Harry sees the diadem crumble, since the fire had been cursed and fortunately did the trick in destroying the horcrux. Then, as the twins and Percy are fighting Death Eaters in the hall they’d come in from, an explosion kills Fred. Harry helps Percy stow him, everyone then continuing fighting Death Eaters except for the trio, Harry looking into Voldemort’s mind upon Hermione’s request. He sees Voldemort chilling, knowing Harry’d pursue him for Nagini, he commanding Malfoy’s Pops to get Snape.

The trio use the invisibility cloak due to how many faculty and students were fighting Death Eaters, Hagrid getting swept away with giant spiders as his bro searches for him at the castle windows. They retreat toward the forest, Harry too desperate by the dementors approaching to summon his patronus. Luna and 2 others save their asses and they reach the Whomping Tree where they’d get to the Shrieking Shack, Harry overhearing Snape speaking with Voldemort about the uprise and the Elder wand not impressing him like he expected. He concludes it’s because Snape had killed Dumbledore, meaning he’d have to kill Snape, leaving before he’s truly dead and giving Harry time to collect Snape’s memory.

Voldemort speaks loud-speaker style again to them about allowing an hour to help the injured and gather their dead, and if Harry didn’t reveal himself, he’d kill anyone to get in his way. Ron and Hermione encourage Harry to ignore Voldemort’s terms and focus on a new game plan at the castle. They see the Weasleys at Fred’s body, along with Tonks and Lupin’s, Harry too distraught to see who else hadn’t made it because of him. Instead he makes his way to Dumbledore’s office, which still contained the Pensieve, believing Snape’s memories could be no worse than what he’d currently experienced and having a temporary escape. He sees Snape as a boy confronting Lily about her magic and how Petunia had been a prude from childhood, and Snape’d struggled controlling his emotions around the close-minded Muggle, Petunia.

James and Sirius had taken a disliking of Snape from their first meeting on the train, Lily torn from the start on liking and disliking both Snape and James. Later on, after Snape’d heard part of the prophecy, he’d met with Dumbledore, whom had shown contempt of Snape for the first time because of his love for Lily and disregarding her new family. Snape is shown attempting to heal the injured Dumbledore after he’d worn Slytherin’s ring. The 2 discuss how this’d kill Dumbledore in about a year and how Draco’s task of murdering him should go to Snape as Voldemort had dictated. Dumbledore eventually shares with Snape how Harry’d have to be killed by Voldemort before Voldemort could die, because Harry carried a piece of his soul. The last memory is of Snape preparing to leave Gryffindor’s sword for Harry to find.

Colin Creevey dies, Harry seeing this after noticing how little time he had left, using his invisibility cloak and passing Neville and Oliver Wood carrying him. He leaves the castle without speaking to anyone, making the leaving easier, but does run into Neville again as he’s gone back out for more bodies. He made sure Neville knew to kill Nagini, he going invisible again and not stopping even when he sees Ginny helping someone. He learns how to open the snitch and gets the Resurrection stone, he seeing his parents, Lupin, and Sirius, they walking with him to Voldemort. 2 of the Death Eaters unknowingly lead him there where the rest of the followers, plus a bound Hagrid, whom is aghast Harry’d come. Harry was apparently thinking of Ginny kissing something of his (“—-“, not a period.), then gets the green flash.

Harry wakes up feeling alive, but meeting a quite dead Dumbledore, he believing Harry wasn’t quite corpse. Dumbledore also reveals how Grindelwald had killed his sis. After some time, they reach the subj. of Harry having the option to live, he ofc choosing accordingly. Voldemort had collapsed, as well, he delegating the task of checking Harry’s vitals to Narcissa, she asking after Draco, they then all heading for the castle with Harry playing dead, and Voldemort having Hagrid carry him. Voldemort does his voice boom trick and tells of Harry’s kaput inaccurately, then threatens death to anyone who didn’t kneel before him.

Ultimately, there’s a revolt and Neville kills Nagini with Gryffindor’s sword, Harry getting under his invisibility cloak. Once Harry’s given shield charms to those on his way to Voldemort, Bellatrix is taken out by Mrs. W and Harry extrapolates how Voldemort wasn’t true owner of the Elder wand, he having deduced Malfoy should’ve gotten it, but when Harry’d taken Malfoy’s wand, ownership should be his, now, the wand doing his bidding and Voldemort’s death being his own fault. It takes a few beats before everyone celebrates, Harry getting his 2 buds to accompany him to Dumbledore’s office as he explains Snape’s memories and his plan. Harry leaves the fallen Resurrection stone where he’d dropped it in the Forbidden Forest, he fixing his wand with the Elder wand and deciding to return it to Dumbledore’s resting place, Ron shocked, but Hermione understanding, ofc.

19 years later, Harry and Ginny are taking their 3 kids to the station, Longbottom’s a Herbology prof, Draco married with a son (obv), and Ron and Hermione with their 2, Harry not having been bothered by his scar since, and quelling the fears of his youngest if he were chosen to be Slytherin, mentioning how he’d get a choice, in the end.

Decent enough, I’ll still check out The Tales of Beedle the Bard.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Year Six)

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The Prime Minister of Britain is told by portrait of Fudge wanting a chat, his call with the Prez to be rearranged. Fudge’s presence apparently was an annoyance across Muggle/Wizarding communities alike. The Prime Minister relives his handful of encounters with Fudge, the 2nd one regarding Sirius’ escape, the 3rd about their transport of magical creatures for the Goblet of Fire, the 4th regarding the Azkaban breakout, and now the 5th being Voldemort’s return. Fudge also details how the Muggle disasters had also been caused by Voldemort and his followers as of recently. Fudge reveals to him of already having been fired and was there to intro the new Ministry of Magic, as well, Rufus Scrimgeour. The man bustles in, the down-to-business, sort and taking care of certain Muggle-related needs in regard to the Jr. Prime Minister quacking, Fudge acting as the P.M.’s liaison.

Narcissa and her sister, Bellatrix are in a Muggle town, Bellatrix attempting to stop Narcissa from informing Snape of a secret, she not thinking it was in Voldemort’s best interest for her to reveal this. Despite her advice though, the 2 continue to Snape’s, he entertaining them readily and Wormtail preparing them drinks, since Voldemort had assigned him “to assist” him. After, Bellatrix goes off on him to explain his action and lack thereof in regards to the bidding of Voldemort. Snape comes back with how discerning Voldemort is and he’d already told the one whom most required it. Bellatrix is on a manic roll though, so Snape spends some time reasoning why he’d not been a team player more obviously to the team.

Snape does a stellar job of dotting all them i’s, and then Narcissa keeps stop starting on confiding her issue, but it going against Voldemort’s word, Snape agreeing with Bellatrix of she needing to keep her mouth shut, since he also was aware of the plan, pissing off Bellatrix again, but Narcissa focused on how this would endanger Draco, since he was such an eager puppy to help. She continues to beg for him to attempt to change Voldemort’s mind due to his inter-relationships with the Malfoys and Voldemort, he reminding her Voldemort’s main concern was allowing Snape to keep his position under cover, so would be in reserve to take over the task upon Draco’s failure, this ofc not comforting the distraught mother, but the consent to an Unbreakable Vow does the trick.

In regards to how Harry is found (I wonder if “fug” was supposed to be, “a misty ‘fog’.) at his window, asleep and breathing on the pane, he had been reading news referencing the attempted lifting of the prophecy in the Dept. of Mysteries, as well as another article about Fudge and his replacement, Rufus Scrimgeour, he and Dumbledore butting heads almost immediately. Regardless of this, Scrimgeour was setting up a variety of magical security for Hogwarts, and Harry currently was awaiting Dumbledore to collect him to return to the Burrow after a couple weeks at his Aunt’s (His letter concludes, “I am, yours most sincerely”, eye raise?).

Harry gets his visit from Dumbledore only a little bit after 11 pm. Harry hadn’t prepared the Dursleys, rightly so, but Dumbledore is a smooth talker anyways, he wiling some time away in their living room, so they could discuss some necessities before biffing off. One of these topics was Sirius’ will and leaving all to Harry, his home among them, but they needing to test if any charms placed on his possessions could be null if not a blood relative, Kreacher being the subject which showed Harry had claimed his inheritance. Dumbledore then details and requests the Dursleys allow Harry to return one last time before he came of age, so he’d carry the protection of the charm a bit longer, they then leaving for Dumbledore’s task.

This turns out to be convincing Dumbledore’s colleague, Horace Slughorn to teach at Hogwarts. They are met with what looks like a home broken into and weird, red, gelatinous goop high on the wall, Dumbledore detecting where Horace was laying, the two putting his home back to clean-state. Dumbledore intro;s Harry, and Horace, sensing why he’d brought him, straight out declines, but they staying for a drink. Harry learns Slughorn had been his mother’s teacher and he loving how his former students who had made themselves successful, send him gifts, and once Dumbledore has them leave abruptly, ensures Slughorn would come back for the new semester. Before next leaving Harry at the Burrow, Dumbledore gives him kudos on how he’d taken the Ministry of Magic drama, his loss, and how he should, most definitely confide in his buddies on what the prophecy contained. He’s then given some interesting news of studying under Dumbledore.

They then go to the Burrow, Mrs. Weasley and Tonks up to greet them at the early hour, the latter looking sickly and leaving quickly, Dumbledore following soon after, Harry getting fed. Molly mentions Arthur getting a promotion and was returning soon, Harry having to sit through a slightly embarrassing question and answer regarding a private name between the two. Soon after Harry is sent to the twins’ room to sleep, they staying in a flat above their shop, Molly acknowledging their natural business acumen. Later on Ron, Ginny, and Hermione come in to greet him, he getting breakies from Fleur, she sharing her engagement to Bill and the family not on-board. They also receive their grades from O.W.L.s and Harry’s dream of becoming an Auror being dashed.

On his birthday, they learn Karkaroff had been discovered dead, and a few days later came their class and book list, Harry learning he’d made Quidditch Captain and now had similar benefits as prefects. Molly would take them all to Diagon Alley for supplies and look in on the twins shop by the weekend, upon everyone going, they seeing how Diagon Alley looked much seedier with the closed shops, Hagrid escorting the trio whilst Ginny was stuck with her parents. They end up seeing Malfoy with mummsy in the robes shop, the two Malfoys being cunts in tandem, but Harry rising to the occasion, as well.

After, they see the twins had made quite an eye-drawing ad in front of their shop and inside, they learned the twins were making mad bank, Harry being offered whatever he fancied for free. As everyone is looking through the shop, the trio steal away after Malfoy, whom had gone solo to get an item fixed without any parentals finding out, they not able to discover what it was or what Malfoy wanted to purchase, they returning to Mrs. Weasley and Hagrid.

Harry can’t shake Malfoy’s odd request at the shop, he considering and sharing how he thought perhaps Malfoy had been sworn in as a Death Eater to replace his imprisoned father, neither buddy convinced, Arthur taking a similar opinion when Harry confides his suspicion at the train stop, Harry then hanging out with Neville and Luna, since Ron and Hermione had prefect duties. Harry and Neville end up bowing out due to an invite from Slughorn for lunch with promising students, one being passed on when he learns the boy wasn’t in close contacts with his powerful family member. Slughorn reserves interviewing Harry last, they all finally released when it darkened to evening, Harry getting his chance to snoop on Malfoy when a Slytherin enters his compartment.

His nosiness gets the best of him, ofc, so he allows himself to be caught by Malfoy, whom freezes him, breaks his nose, and covers him with his cloak in the hope he wouldn’t be discovered until the train had returned to London. Fortunately, Tonks helps him, she acting much sobered still and to top it off, Snape collects him from the highly secure gate. When Dumbledore gives his speech, Harry is shocked to learn Snape had gotten his wish to become the Defense teacher and when everyone leaves after the speech to dorms, Harry shares with Ron why his nose had been messed up and how the 3 would inform Hagrid none of them were continuing Care of Magical Creatures.

They get their new schedules and once going to Defense with Snape, he starts the class with silent spell-casting and shielding, which Harry gets a detention when talking back without thinking. Dumbledore sends a message about when his first lesson was, unfortunately the same time as poor Snape’s detention. When they take Potions with Slughorn, Harry’s borrowed textbook gives him notes on how to prepare the classwork perfectly and winning the good luck potion, Ginny worried by Harry having followed notes from an unknown person, it revealing in the back it’d been owned by the half-blood prince.

As their Potions lessons continue, Harry follows the half blood prince’s notes and Hermione sticks with the official way even after being offered to share, getting annoyed it wasn’t giving her the same results, Harry getting all the potions perfectly the next few times. When Harry makes it to his Saturday lesson with Dumbledore, he discovers he’d planned for them to learn more about Harry’s situation with Voldemort together, since Harry now knew as much as him, this point on being the theories into hopefully discovering more truth (Rowling has Dumbledore use a word like “huger” after he just claims to being a cleverer man than most?…say tf what???) To begin, Dumbledore has them view a memory through the Pensieve from a Bob Ogden, whom had shared a memory whilst he’d been working for Magical Law Enforcement. They are soon following Ogden to a hidden home outside Little Hangleton, he confronted by an intimidating grungy man speaking Parseltongue. He sets a spell on Ogden, an older man coming out to collect his son and warn how he’d had every right to defend himself and his property.

Ogden sees Gaunt’s daughter, as well, she ignoring them. Soon, Ogden shares a summons being given to Morfin, Gaunt having a cow, since they’d been purebloods for hundreds of years and were descendants of Slytherin, the group interrupted by a passing couple outside, Morfin then outing his sister for having eyes for the Muggle man and their father going into a rage because of their pure heritage and racism. Ogden returns later with more back up and the 2 men are sentenced to Azkaban, Harry also learning Morfin’s sister was Voldemort’s mother and his father had been the handsome Muggle.

By the time Gaunt had been released, Voldemort’s mother had biffed off and when Morfin had gotten out, his father was already dead. Merope had eloped with her bedazzled lover, gets pregnant and before giving birth, Tom Sr. ditches her for possibly returning to his senses and doesn’t inquire after his offspring thereafter. Before leaving for the night, Harry sees the same ring Gaunt had been wearing inside Dumbledore’s office, he hurting his hand around the time he’d acquired it, but this story still on pause.

Hermione’s begrudgement toward Harry’s mastering the Potions lessons so far was the only mo. she could claim, since everyone’s classes had become more detailed and work-heavy. The ability to spell-casting silently alluded many, but was needed in more than one class, so practice was viewed in Gryffindor’s common room often, and visits with Hagrid were nonexistent, he now ignoring them in halls. The trio contend with finding the time to attempt a chat with Hagrid, Harry having tryouts and the numbers be more excessive than the years before.

They learn through the news, the young conductor, Stan had been arrested for Death Eater info before they all go to the Quidditch field for the tryouts. Ron and Ginny make it again, Hermione jinxing the most talented boy, so Ron had a chance, they visiting Hagrid after and fixing his attitude about they not taking his class, he also sharing Aragog the spider seeming ill. Before reaching dinner, Slughorn invites Hermione and Harry for late din din saying he’d speak with Snape on postponing his detention once more, this not happening and Harry learning his task would be a messy one.

The day of Hogsmeade trip, Harry was flipping through the half-blood prince’s Potions textbook, the made up hexes and jinxes fascinating him. Later, he’s confronted by Slughorn in Honeyduke’s since he’d missed all of his invites so far, due to making Quidditch practice the same hour, his next save being his class with Dumbledore. When the trio decide to make an early day of Hogsmeade due to weather, Harry learning Mundungus was nicking Sirius’s stuff, and everyone getting into more of a mood, on their way back, a girl student has a disturbing episode in front of them, Harry getting Hagrid and he running back to the school with her. They told McGonagall what they’d witnessed, Harry still believing Malfoy was behind it, despite he being in detention, Ron and Hermione not arguing anymore, since he couldn’t see past his own theory.

Monday evening Dumbledore has them enter one of his own memories regarding Tom and the day he’d spoken with his orphanage mistress, she loosening her tongue about how he’d come there and the weird incidents to happen around him. Upon meeting Ton, he was suspicious, but eager to attend Hogwarts and after viewing the memory, Dumbledore has Harry remember Voldemort’s reactions during certain pieces of their interaction, before ending their session.

Harry is going on and on about how he mustn’t have feelings for Ginny because Ron would kill him. Instead, he gives Ron his luck charm, Hermione catching him, and he defiant. After Ron plays the best game of his life, Harry reveals of duping Ron with fake potion, but Hermione and he not making up, he ending his night with a snog with Lavender and Hermione siccing her conjured birds at him for being a snob and show off. At Slughorn’s party where Harry took Luna, he snoops on Malfoy and Snape by invisible cloak, they having retreated to a classroom nearby, it revealing quite a bit indirectly.

Harry shares this information with Arthur at Christmas, Lupin also present and saying the repeated, “If you trust Dumbledore, might as well trust Snape.” On Christmas morning, Percy is accompanied by Scrimgeour, whom obviously came to see Harry on the pretense of Percy wanting to spend time with the family, which was not the case. Harry soon learns Scrimgeour wanted him to agree to at least look like he’s aiding the Ministry, to calm people’s fears, but Harry not falling for being a fluffer for the Ministry in the press and declines outrightly.

When they return to school after holidays, they are presented with opportunity to receive apparating lessons, the trio all signing up. Harry’s lesson with Dumbledore had him relating his chat with Scrimgeour and the conversation between Snape and Malfoy, Dumbledore acting as Lupin anticipated, unphased. Harry shows his being butt-hurt, since Dumbledore became short with him about his loyalty to Snape having been unchanged, Dumbledore regarding this before refocusing them on the couple of memories he’s collected. He starts with how Voldemort dropped his father’s name and his search into his family background.

The first memory from Morfin which proved Voldemort had killed his father and grandparents. The second was an altered memory from Slughorn which Dumbledore tasked Harry in having him confess properly. Harry’s first attempt fails, another chance arriving on Ron’s birthday when he’s accidentally love-potioned, then poisoned in Slughorn’s office. Harry ends up next to Ron to recover a cracked skull from Quidditch, he also realizing and having Dobby and Kreacher do his bidding and spy on Malfoy for him.

When Harry meets with Dumbledore, he’s made to feel guilty for not completing the Slughorn task, but they continue with more memories, Harry apologizing and determined to try again. They go to a memory when Voldemort killed to retrieve his mother’s locket as well as a Hufflepuff cup from Hogwarts’ history and one from Dumbledore’s memory where Voldemort returns after Dumbledore had become Headmaster recently and asks for a position again, Dumbledore ofc refusing, this also being the origin of when Defense would employ an annually changing teacher.

Harry soon learns Malfoy was going to the Room of Requirement for an unknown purpose, learning later it was used for 2 pieces of furniture, one in the antique shop, but first Harry takes some good luck potion to help persuade Slughorn, which leads to him going to Hagrid’s invite to Aragog’s funeral, Slughorn tagging what with the acquisition of fang venom and Harry using a refilling of wine charm, getting Slughorn toasted and convincing him to supply the memory to him.

Once Harry learns Dumbledore had come back late, the two immediately view the memory. After which Harry gets his chance to destroy a horcrux after hearing Snape had been the snooper of the prophecy getting Harry’s parents killed. They retrieve the horcrux without too much trouble, but upon getting back to Hogsmeade, they see the Dark mark above Hogwarts. Malfoy soon has Dumbledore at his mercy, Harry enchantedly frozen, he having been the cause of the girl student and Ron’s close death calls. In the end, Snape must do the deed, Harry giving chase and losing him outside the boundaries of the school to disapparate. Hagrid doesn’t believe Harry, he seeing Dumbledore’s body, Snape also having admitted to being the half-blood prince.

Harry refuses to part from Dumbledore’s body, only Ginny able to lead him away, she guiding him to where everyone else was currently, the hospital wing. Bill had been disfigured by Greyback, a werewolf curse making it difficult to heal, but fortunately everyone had taken some lucky potion. McGonagall had taken the post as Headmistress and she having the Heads of Houses vote on whether they should keep the school open before the Minister of Magic arrived. They have Dumbledore’s funeral, Harry declares he planned on not returning to Hogwart’s and instead look for the horcruxes, but before setting out, Hermione and Ron ofc plan to join him, they having to go to Bill and Fleur’s wedding, Harry also having broken up with Ginny to protect her. The End. Good enough, onward!

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Year Five)

Image result for harry potter order of the phoenix book

Harry’s been attempting to keep an eye and ear out of word regarding odd deaths in relation to Voldemort all summer, he not having any luck. An interaction with Dudley gets him in enough trouble with the Dursleys and the Ministry of Magic where he’s first automatically expelled for using the patronum spell against a couple of dementors. Soon after, he gets word from Sirius, and 2 of the Weasleys, as well as Hermione as to how he should proceed. After which, he gets another official letter condemning him a bit more lightly in only being suspended until a hearing was held as to his reasons for applying magic outside the wizarding community. Throughout all this mess, his uncle officially kicks him out only to be swayed by a letter which Petunia was the only one to understand, so Harry is again “lucky” in having his back up “home” still being an option.

When Harry does finally get the chance to ditch the Dursleys, it’s with the newly introduced Nymphadora Tonks, as well as Lupin, Moody, and a few other wizards who would escort Harry by broom to their new headquarter for the Order of the Phoenix, Sirius’ family home. Hermione and Ron soon get a huge bitch fit from Harry, since he’d felt so alone and left out of being told anything and having been tailed all summer and everyone seeming to know. He receives updates on Percy and his new position having him fall out with the family because they feel he’s being used solely for information about his family and Dumbledore, whom was now a bad word in the Ministry of Magic. Kreacher is the elf of the house and was touched in the head, he attempting to periodically lift family heirlooms which Sirius was in the process of dumping, one of the portraits in the main hall of Sirius’ mother, whom continually shouted expletives against him and held similar views to the Malfoys.

Sirius decides to answer some of Harry’s questions despite Molly Weasley vehemently against it due to Harry still being a child, regardless of how the men in the house felt, which was he was old enough to hear what they thought was necessary for him to be safe. Later, Harry learns from a portrait of Sirius’ family tree, he was related to Tonks, a cousin, and also the Malfoys and Weasleys. After this, Kreacher is still on a rampage after more family items whilst talking shit about everyone under his breath, but not enough for it to be discreet. The night before his hearing he is updated of Arthur accompanying him and Sirius would sit this one out by Dumbledore’s order, Harry a little miffed he hadn’t wanted to speak with him personally after learning he’d been over the night before. He and Arthur walk to his office today, they entering by broken phone box. After a little runaround, Harry is only late by a few minutes, Arthur not able to join Harry inside, but the room shocking him, since he’d viewed it from the pensieve.

Harry sits in the chair with chains in front of the panel of about 50, Fudge in the center and Percy at the far end taking notes, Dumbledore arriving as introductions of the panel were made, to Harry’s surprise and Fudge’s displeasure. The change of venue and time seemed to have changed so abruptly being to keep Dumbledore out, but he’d prepared by arriving early. Fudge begins his damning questions when another wizard asks for Harry to elaborate after mentioning the dementors, Fudge cutting him off again making it seem he was lying, since Dudley couldn’t see them, but Dumbledore jumps in to state of another witness being available which puts Fudge off, so Dumbledore makes certain it’s within Harry’s rights to be allowed outside witnesses to testify on his behalf.

Figg is called in, Fudge attempting to make her sound un-credible. Bones seemed to take the story more seriously and Dumbledore admits the dementors wouldn’t have been there by chance and if Fudge wouldn’t admit to what Dumbledore had previously stated to him, then the Ministry would have to be responsible for releasing the dementors and ordering them to a Muggle city. Fortunately, even though Fudge kept attempting to throw Harry under the bus, Dumbledore had the answers and after stating the forum should make their decision, Fudge isn’t happy in having to announce Harry being cleared, Dumbledore not acknowledging Harry and leaving swiftly.

Harry tentatively exits and shares the verdict with Arthur, they seeing Malfoy speaking with Fudge, being a dick and then the two finally deciding to hold hands and skip to Fudge’s office to finish their important, gold-filled sharing conversation (not quite the way as describe, ofc). Arthur gets Harry back before returning to work, he sharing his good news again and they getting lunch. Sirius, apparently was happy, but also a bit aggravated, since Harry wouldn’t be staying with him now, in the trio’s opinion, anyways. After a few days, they receive their book list letter, Ron getting an extra surprise of also being prefect, Harry struggling with feeling truly happy for a bit, getting through it after reminding himself Ron is a friend (ffs). After, everyone meets for dinner and they also celebrate Ron and Hermione’s prefectdom, Harry feeling warm toward the group after reminding himself his papa wasn’t ever a prefect, either.

Harry helps Fred and George complete a deal with Mundungus for their shop, mentioning Moody possibly watching. Harry feels a bit guilty when imagining what Molly would think of him if she found out he’d helped the twins with their low quality dream. Harry’s good vibes at the party swiftly souring and feeling antisocial. When Molly bows out, Harry planned on following, but is side-tracked by Moody, whom shares a pic of himself and many people Harry knew, including the Longbottoms and his parents, he finally getting a reason to leave when Sirius interrupts them, Harry off after Molly. He also thinks about how unsettling Moody’s thoughtful photo share had been, when he heard crying, and seeing the dead bodies of some of the Weasley sibs and himself, Molly having trouble with the boggart, Lupin then assisting. Molly asks they keep her fears from Arthur, Lupin quelling her anxiety a bit, Harry awaying to his room and realizing how dumb he’d been feeling like shit over helping fund the twins and not making prefect.

Harry has odd dreams, waking to Ron in mid-sentence about his mother freaking out at the twins for almost killing Ginny with a trunk transporting method and being late for the train. Sirius joins them in dog-form despite Dumbledore’s opinion, everyone arriving as usual and no weirdness occurring. They get on the train, but Harry soon learns Ron and Hermione had to report to Head Girl and Boy in the Prefect carriage, he and Ginny finding a compartment. Neville joins them, Ginny suggesting they sit with Luna Lovegood, an odd owl-eyed girl, she responding to Ginny, then identifying Harry, and admitting she didn’t know Neville. The boys were unnerved by Luna’s flighty socializing skills, Ginny entertained.

Neville doused the group with stinksap when Cho decides to greet Harry to his and her severe embarrassment, an hour after the food trolley passing before Ron and Hermione are able to accompany them and share who were the other Houses prefects, one of Slytherin being easy to identify. Ron makes a joke at one point which completely overtakes Luna, everyone soon laughing at Ron’s reaction to Luna’s overreaction Harry then distracting himself with a politi-comic about Fudge wanting to buy Gringotts and an article on Sirius being an alias for a lead singer of a band. The lady whom identifies him believed Sirius would soon be pardoned from his crimes, since he couldn’t have been there at the time. Hermione makes an assertion about the magazine which Luna takes offense to, since her father was editor, Malfoy then dropping in, briefly to provide some paranoia about whether he knew about Sirius’ dog form. When they get to the station, Harry doesn’t hear Hagrid’s usual greeting, a female rounding up the first years. Another odd thing was how the horseless carriages now had creatures pulling them. Ron didn’t have a clue what Harry was talking about, but Luna confirms Harry’s vision, this not quite comforting.

Luna gives her opinion on how Ravenclaw students saw Hagrid’s teaching skills, Hermione’s response being the only one without loyal heat. When they’d gotten to the banquet hall and still didn’t see Hagrid, Harry suggests it could be due to the mission Dumbledore had given him, the Sorting Hat next doing its First Year division, but including a warning for the Houses to stay strong, together. When Dumbledore makes his introduction speech after supper, he’s interrupted for the first time, by Umbridge, the new Defense teacher, she having been a judge at Harry’s trial. She gives one helluva boring speech about being open to change where needed and keeping only the good rules in place. Hermione deduces the meaning simply for them: the Ministry had plans to mess with Hogwarts rules. As Harry and dorm boys readied for bed, there’s a bit of an upset between himself and Seamus, whom decided to believe his mother, whom thought the news written about Harry, the 2 quickly falling out and Harry wondering how many more people he’d lose before Voldemort made his presence known.

Next morning, Hermione sees Fred and George’s notice on the Gryffindor bulletin board for part-time workers, Hermione taking charge by stating they’d have to speak to the twins about their ad. When they enter the banquet hall, they are again greeted by a Hagrid-less room. Later on, Harry is made a fool of by Snape in class again. He was still so butt hurt, he takes it out on Ron and Hermione again, since they were still tiffing with each other. Then, in Divination Ron shares Hermione’s thoughts of Harry treating them unfairly, but the 2 also having stopped their little arguments. When they get to their first class with the new Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, she declares they’d be filling in their gaps of knowledge due to their teachers never staying past a year.

Umbridge decides to have them begin with a reading assignment, Hermione soon making a scene with her silent hand raise. The class is soon paying more attention to her as Umbridge ignores her for a few minutes until finally regarding her question about application of defense, Umbridge soon receiving more raised hands and Harry costing 10 points after suggesting Voldemort could be a danger to anyone outside, she maintaining this was untrue and they wouldn’t have to practice for their O.W.L.s, since reading should be enough. By the end of Harry’s insubordinance, he’d gotten detention for the rest of the week and sent to McGonagall’s office, she making certain Harry understood what was required of him and to watch his step around Umbridge.

At dinner, the trio leave early with all the loud retellings of Harry’s confrontation, Hermione incensed on how Dumbledore could’ve allowed Umbridge be their professor. The day of his first detention, Harry’s Quidditch team leader angrily demands he get Friday off for their tryout. Harry does ask, but it’s clear Umbridge planned on having him suffer, especially with his standards which cut and healed on his hand after each being written. He decides not to share this part of the punishment with his buddies. It does come out to Ron by the 3rd night, though, he having been practicing for Quidditch tryouts, Harry still attending detention, but viewing part of the tryouts from a bit of a distance, by the end of his session, he getting a shock from his scar and a weird feeling from Umbridge and how she responded to his pulling away from her, Harry leaving and busting in on Ron celebrating becoming Keeper.

On Saturday, the boys put off their other homework to practice for Quidditch before actual practice, it not going well in the proper practice, especially after Fred and George give a teammate a wrong pill and her nosebleed gets worse. As the boys get to their homework, Ron receives a message from Percy which has him promoting Ron to ditch Harry and to see what role Dumbledore would soon have listed in tomorrow’s paper. Sirius visits by flame, they learning what Fudge thought Dumbledore could be teaching and why they’d only be studying from text. Sirius also notes how Dumbledore wasn’t worrying about Hagrid’s absence, so they should do the same, but when the idea of he perhaps meeting up with them again at a Hogsmeade outing goes against him, he pulls a Harry and reacts petulantly and declares Harry was being unlike his father after he and Hermione noted the risk what with Malfoy and the news.

The news certainly showed how Umbridge’s position had doubled in title and power, since she also held the newly stated position of “High Inquisitor”, as well as professor, she now taking notes on the professors and sitting in on classes. Harry also gets himself a second week of detention after talking back in Defense again and getting an extra night in Care, etc., since Umbridge was rating the temporary professor and Harry butted in on Malfoy’s injury story. At night, Harry’s given the suggestion of he teaching his buds Defense, since he was the best at practical use, but it slowly descending into Harry getting upset, he frustratedly agreeing to think about it, at least.

Hermione waits a couple weeks before asking again, Harry a bit more flexible to the idea, Hermione even suggesting they hold an open meeting the weekend to Hogsmeade in case other students were interested. Harry’s only other concern was the possibility of Sirius turning up. Upon the day, they go to the Hog’s Head, so as to stay from under Umbridge radar, the group which Hermione expected to being more than a couple, a baker’s dozen, at least. Hermione warms the crowd up, since she’d set all this up and master-minded it, making sure those students understood it was for only those who actually wanted to know how to practice what they read. One kid seemed to want to make trouble, but the twins with Ron defending Harry and what he’d been explaining to them about half of what he’d done being good luck, the group wanting Harry to teach them, anyways. Setting time and place was a bit difficult, so Hermione had a parchment ready for people to sign and be given the details later, this also being an agreement to keep their lessons to themselves. After, Ron learns Ginny had a boyfriend and Hermione had seen the constant looks Cho was giving Harry, which left him in the clouds again, whilst Ron blustered.

The trio spend Sunday finishing homework and sitting outside whilst doing so, Hermione knitting magically. Harry stayed in happy spirits all the way to Monday morning, when on the “notice” board, Umbridge had posted all types of clubs canceled and those wanting to apply could only be approved by her, and any outlaws would be expelled. Ron shows Hermione, she believing no one from their meeting had done it, since she’d jinxed the parchment and they’d see. Harry didn’t realize until Angelina, the Quidditch leader reminded him, they’d have to behave themselves if they wanted Umbridge to allow Gryffindors team to re-form. Hedwig next interrupts Harry’s history class due to an injury, he leaving her with Grubbly-Plank, reading Sirius’ reply on meeting time and place. Hermione and Ron note how hopefully no one’s been reading his messages, a possibility for how Hedwig became injured.

In the meanwhile, at Potions, Malfoy is loudly sharing how Slytherins team had been reinstated quickly and bashing Harry indirectly until mentioning he should be sent to St. Mungo’s, Hermione attempting to warn the boys of keeping a cool head, but Neville being the first to react, Harry and Ron holding him back, Snape then coming out to see the 3 struggling and wresting 10 points from them. Today also happened to be Umbridge’s sit-in, Harry quite nosy about how Umbridge would display her stepping upon Snape’s toes. It not being worth the 0 credit he receives for his botched potion in class plus essay on how he fucked it up. In Divination it’s obvious Trelawney was sent her sit-in results, she quite aggressive and only a little bit passive toward the class in response. The trio learn later of how Gryffindors team would be on hiatus until Umbridge made up her flabby-assed mind, Hermione noting how Harry had time for Snape’s extra essay now, at least…huzzah. When Sirius shows up, he mentions how he’d heard about their rebel training and whom had spotted them, since Harry was still being tailed.

The trio also got a message from Molly about not continuing the group. but Sirius’ opinion opposing hers, he giving suggestions for meeting spots, but they being interrupted by Umbridge’s hand in the flames attempting to catch Sirius, the conversation quickly ending and the trio retreating. Hermione is now almost certain Umbridge has been the reason Hedwig was injured through her attempts at reading Harry’s mail. During free time, Angelina updates Ron and Harry of getting their team approved, so practice would resume in the evening. Hermione is considering how good an idea it was to keep their secret group active, what with not quite finalizing everything, yet, she noting how Sirius was preoccupied with his isolation (Boosh) and perhaps wanting the trio to do as he and James would’ve done, rebel; the boys don’t take reality well.

During Quidditch practice, weather was still at downpour level, they trying to play for an hour before the session ended, Harry’s scar hurting again due to Voldemort’s mood. Harry tries to do more of his essay late into the night, his mind wandering on Voldemort, before sleeping for a short while, Dobby visiting him in the common room when he wakes up again, he sharing how Hermione’s knitting endeavors was affronting most of the elves, so Dobby had been collecting them for himself and Winky, he even having a decent spot for the Defense group to practice. During the day, Harry tells Angelina of their practice area and time, she passing it on and Hermione agreeing once learning Dumbledore had spoken about it, as well, since Dobby’s word alone was similar to Sirius’ in quality. They have their first official group meeting by voting Harry leader and naming themselves Dumbledore’s Army, Harry then having them start with the disarming charm. The first practice goes so well, there is agreement to meeting more often, but it’d wait until next week for confirmations.

This turns out to be difficult with opposing schedules, but worked for their needs to deceive obvious patterns to be caught. Hermione did come up with a convenient way for everyone to be updated on when their next sessions were by using a coin to present date and time when Harry set his, this soon being put on hold with the game soon to be had. Snape and McGonagall also decide to refrain from homework, so their teams could practice, the day of. Ron is extremely nervous, and Slytherin kids are wearing a crown badge, saying “Weasley is our King”, because of how shit he is, sometimes, when nerves get him; They even have a flipping song!

By the finish with Gryffindor winning, Harry and George both get sent to McGonagall’s office for fighting with Malfoy. Umbridge steps in and bans the 2 from playing Quidditch for life. Harry and Ron have shitty feelings later on, respectively when Hermione sees Hagrid was home.When they see him, his ass had got beat! By giants, which Hermione guesses and it being the obvious choice, after all. Hagrid is then baited with deets from Harry’s summer so they could hear about his secret mission with Madame Maxime. They’re interrupted by Umbridge, Hermione not seeming to stress enough how serious Umbridge’s sit-ins were to Hagrid, he too tired for this shit.

They go to Hagrid’s first class back and Umbridge wasn’t there, Hagrid having his class in the Forbidden Forest to “see” Thestrals, Umbridge locating them, giving her usual spiel on having sent a message, etc, Hagrid continuing admirably, even whilst Slytherin kids shared insulting opinions of their time in class, how he spoke and whatnot, Umbridge relating similarly and talking to him like he wasn’t an English-speaker and slow. Hermione rages a bit after, Malfoy taking another hit at Ron and Harry, nothing of note happening up to the talk of holidays, Harry spending it with the Weasleys, Hermione skiing with her folks, and poor Sirius all alone. Upon their final D.A. meeting, Harry gets selfish when Cho breaks down after class and Harry having wanted it to be a sweet moment rather than being about Cedric, but then she gives him a happy Christmas, for a 15 year old, but his thought on whether to share or take it to his grave, is puzzling.

Hermione completely guesses, though, so she doesn’t care much after, but Ron getting a decent Q&A, Hermione rejoining the chat when the boys need some insight on why Cho may be conflicted about liking Harry. Afterward, Harry yearns for advice from the one fella whom probably had almost the same capacity of knowledge as Harry, emotionally. He does have one fairly forward-thinking thought, which was to have the school teach teen girl psyche (not a bad idea, if one wishes to be empathetic). He then wakes from a violent physically-ill-causing dream, he trying to have Ron believe his father had been in danger. When McGonagall hears his story, she decides to take him to Dumbledore, whom has orders given out to available wizards. He then has the other Weasley kids sent for so they and Harry could wait at Sirius’, Harry feeling some exorcism-hateful kind of thoughts toward Dumbledore, and when getting to Sirius’ before Umbridge had come, Harry retells his vision slightly differently to offset possible accusation for having let it happen.

Sirius soon has to convince the Weasley twins to stay put until they could get Molly there, he settling by giving all butterbeer, Harry shaken and guilty about his first-person-snake vision and his murderous feelings toward Dumbledore earlier. Molly sends a message with instructions to stay put, the kids not liking her choice of words, implying Arthur was only hanging in there. Everyone stays awake and wonders what was happening, until Molly arrives before dawn, confirming he’d be fine. Harry and Sirius both getting her grateful thanks, especially when he invites them to stay through the holidays. Harry has a not-so-fruitful heart-to-heart with Sirius when he admits his dream and feelings toward Dumbledore after reaching Sirius’ home. Harry doesn’t sleep, unlike the rest, caught up with his snaky feeling, they being escorted by Tonks and Moody to hospital later, it being through a closed shop front. The Weasley kids learn about Harry’s possession by snake whilst eavesdropping on Molly, Arthur, Tonks, and Moody’s chat after they’d had seen Arthur themselves.

Harry begins believing he was the weapon Voldemort was using which was why he was being guarded. In the end, he believes he’d be saving those around him if he stayed at the Dursleys, but Dumbledore sends word by one of the paintings to remain where he was, pissing Harry off again. Feeling teen loner angst, he falls asleep, doesn’t go down for supper, and when awaking again, comes back to his thought of going to the Dursleys due to thinking everyone was afraid of him again. He wastes the day sequestering himself away from everyone, Hermione showing up due to making an excuse and not being a great skier, as it was. When she leads Harry back to his and Ron’s room, Ginny also there, Harry acts stuck up and angry until Ginny reminds him she’d been possessed by Voldemort and would know better than most, he finally calming down, apologizing to her, and eating a sammie.

Christ Day was pleasantly begun, minus Percy returning his jumper and not speaking with his parents, still. Molly being cheered up by Lupin before breakies and they all going to visit Arthur again, she noticing new bandages and Arthur making light over his trainee healer giving him Muggle stitches. Molly’s reaction is so palpable, half the Weasley kids bow out for a cuppa, Harry and the rest soon following once she realizes what it meant. The bunch see Lockhart looking through a window from a floor below the tea room, he still memory-damaged, and wanting to provide them with autographs, until being collected by a healer, whom unfortunately ropes them into visiting him, since he hadn’t gotten visitors before, and he was in a locked ward for permanent residents.

Harry hears the healer speak to Mrs. Longbottom when they reach the ward, Ron noticing as well, and calling out to Neville, his grandmother asking about them in return, and recognizing them, also revealing who they were visiting, Ron being a bit of a ditz about it, until Neville’s grandma explains why his parents were there, giving Neville a bit of a hard time upon learning he hadn’t shared with his friends, yet. Before the 2 leave, Neville’s mother gives him a bubble gum wrapper, which apparently she did frequently, his grandmother stating how he had so many he should dump this one, but he keeping it. Lockhart impatiently waits for the kids to return so he could take advantage of his “joined-up writing” skills.

As vacay ends, Sirius’ mood becomes darker, Harry not wanting to leave him, ofc. Kreacher finally is discovered and acts oddly more content. Harry also wasn’t as keen on returning to Hogwarts with Umbridge awaiting them and no Quidditch, Mrs. Weasley begins the process of Harry receiving worse news from Snape, firsthand, he soon learning between jabs from Snape and Sirius, Dumbledore wanted Harry to study Occlumency (the study of defending one’s mind from outside violence) in secret, Snape being his teacher, as well, Harry’s early evening on Monday now scheduled. Before Snape leaves, he and Sirius continue getting deeply bent over insulting each other, until being interrupted by all the Weasleys and Hermione welcoming Arthur back. He’d been cured with a magic antidote, Molly making sure he wouldn’t mess with Muggle cures in future. In January, the kids were set to return to Hogwarts, Sirius giving Harry a package which he could use if he needed Sirius, Harry set on not giving him a reason to frolic off from Grimmauld Place.

The bunch go by Knight bus, the conductor, Stan remembering him and the other bus riders staring as he joined and departed. Lupin gives him the piece of advice to learn well, regardless of it being Snape, Harry still not looking forward to it, ofc., esp., since now he’d have to plan the next D.A. meeting accordingly. When Cho turns up, Harry is obv. too immature to be handling a girl like her, since she’d brought up the Valentine’s Hogsmeade day and he talking and thinking about D.A., but with a few missed beats he’s not dumb enough to not invite her, they sealing the date, fortunately for him. In the evening, Snape describes the power Voldemort has of essentially reading minds, so with Occlumency, one could lie “without detection”, if skilled. Snape impressively shares some deets on why Harry was learning this form and directly after decides a defense match was in order. Harry had hexed Snape as a knee-jerk reaction, he continuing to strengthen Harry by pointing out his weakness, which in turn made it difficult to resist Snape’s assault. He did have a Eureka moment about the door he’d been dreaming of periodically, and upon sharing with his buddies what he’d learned, he decides to got to bed for scar pain and tiredness, he getting a sense of Voldemort’s pure happiness which puts him through he ringer of pain.

Hermione gets her paper next morning, an article startling her about a group of Death Eaters in Azkaban escaping and Sirius being their leader according to Fudge, she also catching another terrible article about a resident at St. Mungo’s being strangled by a gifted plant, Harry recognizing the fellow being an employee in the Dept. of Mysteries. Hagrid was put on probation, and Harry had other students relating to his celebrity due to the Azkaban escapees relatives being noticed, now. Umbridge had also made more rules regarding what was said to students regarding anything other than their class subjects from teachers, another student being punished the same way Harry had been for stating a loophole in Umbridge’s new rule. Since all of Harry’s positive reinforcement at Hogwarts was being taken from him, he and his students focused more on D.A., Neville making great headway with the news of the Death Eaters.

Harry’s new practice course was making his scar hurt worse and gave him bipolar mood-swings from Voldemort. Hermione considering he’d feel better the more time he spent mastering it, but Harry becoming stubborn in his idea of all this being worse because of the practicing, Ron suggesting the idea Snape might be attempting to make it easier for Voldemort to enter Harry’s mind, but Hermione maintaining if Dumbledore trusted him, they ought to, as well. Harry’s day with Cho begins awkwardly and only gets worse as they go, some in-between moments going temporarily well. In the end, Cho, becomes tearily upset, and making a scene, the both not communicating to each other well or the feelings they were having being way off balance from the other, so Harry stops thinking about her and goes to the Three Broomsticks to await for Hermione to show up, he chatting to Hagrid.

Their conversation is mysterious and his cuts being explained away with his job being a difficult one, leaving quickly and Hermione soon after calling him to her table to join she with Luna and Rita Skeeter, oddly. Skeeter still attempts, but is turned down with her idea of writing down Harry having been chilling with another girl by Hermione’s comment. Rita is allowed to speak to Harry, though, but she only asks Harry whether he stuck to Dumbledore’s story about Voldemort being back. Harry confirms and Rita gets down to business with Hermione’s blessing to take down Harry’s list of Death Eaters, but properly and without making Harry sound nuts, Hermione confirming The Quibbler would publish it properly, regardless of the magazine’s reputation. Rita begrudgingly takes the interview, since she couldn’t argue what with the position she was in.

They wouldn’t know if it’d make the issue most recent to come out or the one after, but one of Harry’s roomies did point out the interesting reaction Umbridge would have. Later at dinner, Hermione explains the drama Harry had with Cho, Ron coming in after practice and stating how Hermione could write the manual for boys to understand easier. Gryffindor lost Quidditch by 10 points and Harry dreamt of the door again, Ron’s snoring this time preventing him from glimpsing inside. Harry receives post, surprisingly the next morning from a few different birds. His Quibbler story had been published and he was already receiving fan mail, some believers and some not, but people mostly accepting his version. Umbridge takes it horribly, ofc making a new rule of Quibbler possession = expulsion and Harry receiving more detention and 50 points from Gryffindor, Hermione over the moon about Umbridge’s ban, since it’d only have every student read it asap.

They see this to be true, since they keep overhearing students talk about it, Harry even getting points back for Gryffindor, teachers showing their support in varying fashion, Seamus and Cho even coming around, Luna learning her father had to make a reprint for selling out so fast. Later in the evening, Harry dreams of being Voldemort speaking of info Rookwood had acquired. Harry shares this nightmare with Ron and Hermione, she deciding they should ignore it and Harry should focus more on Occlumency. Harry does make headway with Snape after this, he seeing some of his memories for once. They soon interrupted by Trelawney’s screams for having been fired by Umbridge, McGonagall showing empathy and Umbridge challenges on whether Trelawney was allowed to stay by Dumbledore, he having authority on whether a teacher had to leave the grounds, he also already having replaced her with a centaur, Firenze.

Hermione expects Umbridge would be zeroing on Dumbledore for revenge by appointing a half-human professor, their first class being held on the first floor now and the room mirroring the forest. Firenze shares how he’d been kicked out of his herd upon agreeing to teach at Hogwarts. He certainly teaching them how leaving most predictions with a grain of salt was best, since it was difficult practice even for centaurs to be accurate. After class Firenze asks Harry send a cryptic message to Hagrid, which was not explained further other than Hagrid needing sound advice and Firenze receiving help by Hagrid and he wished to keep Hagrid on the right path. Hagrid doesn’t receive the advice open-heartedly though, and Harry bustles along, D.A. meetings keeping his brain occupied, the students starting practice for their patronuses.

Dobby interrupts with the almost too late warning of Umbridge having found out about D.A. and was coming for them, most everyone escaping except Harry, whom gets caught by a jinx from Malfoy, Umbridge taking him to Dumbledore’s office. They find Fudge, Percy, some other fella along with Dumbledore already waiting, Harry denying knowing what was wrong, Umbridge getting their witness, she being Cho’s buddy and showing the signs of the jinx, which prevented her from wanting to speak further. Umbridge soon crosses the line when she attempts to physically force the girl into responding, Dumbledore stopping this hastily. When Umbridge then provides the list of names with the D.A. title, Dumbledore confuses Fudge by offering to confess, and then states Fudge’s plan for him to await trial in Azkaban didn’t suit him, a hex being set on the 4 Ministry employees, and Dumbledore vowing Fudge would regret ousting him.

Notice of Umbridge taking over for Dumbledore was quite immediate, the students learning more than Harry expected, and Malfoy being promoted to a side project of Umbridge’s so he could take points from students. The twins turn up to confide of giving Umbridge a reason to expel them, not worrying anymore and wanting to give Umbridge a run, for Dumbledore’s sake. Harry is escorted by Filch directly after this, to Umbridge, whom required his presence and attempt to secretly have him drink a truth magic drink, she asking about Dumbledore and Sirius’ whereabouts, not getting any answers and then being interrupted by an explosion the twins had been warning Harry about. When Harry sees the sparkly mess the twins had created, it was impressive as it gained energy, not dying out past night. As he retreats, he discovers the twins hiding spot, the 2 quietly in hysterics as they shared what would occur if Umbridge attempted certain spells to make them stop.

Tonight Harry got even closer to Voldemort’s goal of seeing inside the Dept. of Mysteries for a glimpse of the weapon, but this time some late fireworks wake him. His upcoming training with Snape would be extra dreaded, but they end up postponing with Umbridge requesting his help elsewhere by Malfoy, whom was sure to spread the word of Harry’s remedial course. Before biffing off himself, however he sees Snape had left his Pensieved memories just hanging out, so thought he’d have a little perusal. What he sees is 15-ish Snape and his pops along with Sirius, Lupin, and Wormtail taking their Defense O.W.L.s. Harry witnesses his father’s bullying arrogance and the early reactions of his mother toward him. Eventually, he is caught in the memory and thrown out forcefully by Snape, not wanting to see him return again, he understanding the bullied Snape’s feelings.

Hermione can’t believe Harry had somehow finished his lessons with Snape for good, but focuses on scheduling their studying for the O.W.L.s. Harry can’t help, but be absorbed with the thought of his parents personalities and how this memory was affecting his non-memories of his most prized family members. Ginny helps him out by getting the twins on the case for diversion, so Harry would be able to use Umbridge’s office fire to speak to Sirius about his troubled thoughts regarding his father. His first Potions back with Snape was unusually and pleasantly quiet, until Snape breaks his classwork so as to continue his zeroes. When he has his occupational and coursework discussion later with McGonagall and Umbridge sitting in, the two argue about Harry’s chances on becoming an Auror and then McGonagall straight up offering to tutor him through if it was truly his dream, despite Umbridge’s every attempt at shutting this path down.

Before having him sit through more of Umbridge’s nonsense, she allows Harry to conclude and leave as the 2 yell at each other. Harry truly struggles whether he still wanted to continue the plan, deciding he couldn’t pass up a good diversion and proceeding to Umbridge’s office, invisible cloak and pick-locking knife ready. As he has this conversation via floo with Sirius and Lupin, he isn’t calmed by the information they give him, one being to continue Occlumency at any cost. He scurries to get to his invisible cloak again before Filch walks in. Harry leaves after him and witnesses the best school quitting to get out of punishment performance, ever by the twins. They had students tumultuously cheering at the end, the students from then on making the moment the stuff of legend, and becoming troublemakers, themselves and exacting revenge on Umbridge daily. Ron is currently concerned about his mother being outraged he hadn’t stopped them, but Hermione considers how long they must’ve been planning it if they already had a physical address for their shop.

Harry confesses he’d given the twins the money, Hermione soon reminded to ask if Harry had inquired about his training to Snape, he not glad of having shared this information from Sirius’ chat. (These periodic grammatical nonsensical sentences are hard to ignore, esp. when not much is driving this humungo story, other than narrative statements and updates of what’s happened.) Meanwhile, Ron has Quidditch to ‘look forward to’ and during the game, Hagrid steals Harry and Hermione to accompany him into the forest, they learning a bit more about what happened to Firenze and Hagrid’s falling out with the centaurs. This long trip into the forest though, had to do with Hagrid sensing his dismissal coming and he having to take care of Grawp, his half bro, whom wasn’t quite friendly. What he’d want from Hermione, Harry, and if Ron agreed, was to only chat with him, get him used to English society. As they’re about to leave, a bunch of centaurs interrupt. This interaction proves intimidating further to the 2 kids, whilst Hagrid makes note of the centaurs not hurting children. This isn’t a comfort to them, and they decide to save telling Ron, since Gryffindor finally won a Quidditch since he’d joined.

When Ron is told of Grawp, he only hopes (NOT against bloody hope, the dumbest Bible reference, ever) Hagrid sticks it out til summer vacay. When O.W.L.s weeks arrive, everyone becomes frenetic, focused, and quieter, Harry seeing the exam set up to be the same as the one witnessed in Snape’s memory. All 3 take their first week of exams well enough, esp. Harry in Defense, getting a bonus point for his patronus. Harry’s astronomy exam is punctuated by his noticing Hagrid being visited and eventually fighting against Umbridge and a few Ministry workers, they stunning Fang and McGonagall, before Hagrid concusses all but one and Umbridge. During the final exam for history, Harry struggles to remember what he’d studied, he soon dreaming of the door and upon seeing a conversation between Voldemort and Sirius, wakes by falling out of his chair.

Harry is soon absorbing whom he’d be able to share his vision with, since McGonagall had been sent to hospital, he settling on relaying his vision to his buddies, they not as ready as he is to jump after Voldemort to save Sirius. Hermione however, receives the brunt of his fuming anger, since she was attempting to make sense of what Harry saw, he becoming louder and more frustrated as they continued until Ginny and Luna come in to offer to help. This gives Hermione the momentum to have Harry at least chill the fuck out until they confirmed Sirius wasn’t at home, Kreacher giving away the information after some slight withholding, then Harry’s caught by Umbridge. When Snape’s called in to help have Harry reveal why he’d been there, Harry takes a chance by yelling a veiled message to him. To save time before Umbridge hit Harry with a curse and after she’d confessed to sending the dementors, Hermione fake breaks down, in preparation to share what Harry’d been doing, Umbridge eating it up. By the end, Hermione had convinced her they had been wanting to contact Dumbledore to confirm the finishing of a weapon, she having Hermione and Harry lead her as Malfoy and some Slytherins held Ron, Ginny, Luna, and Neville in her office.

Hermione leads them outside, Umbridge nervous when she shares it was in the Forbidden Forest, she leading them down a different path than the one to Grawp, they eventually stopped by centaurs, Umbridge making an arrogant dumb ass out of herself, she retaliating by binding one of the centaurs after a warning arrow flies past her head. She’s soon restrained and taken away further into the forest, Harry and Hermione still in trouble with the 50 strong centaurs, being interrupted by Grawp before they’d decided what to do with them. He apparently was out looking for big brah and in his attempt to pick up someone or other, the centaurs attack him for having knocked one of them down, he chasing them further in, and the 2 soon joined by the other captured kids, everyone arguing on who would accompany Harry, the thestrals soon making it easy for all of them to ditch, Harry annoyed, but wanting to biff off already.

They all arrive quickly and wearily, they getting their visitor badges no problem and without seeing anyone, including security, they proceed to the Dept. of Mysteries. After some time looking for the right door, they don’t discover Sirius, but do detect a jar with Harry’s name labeling it, Lucius soon having him pass it to him. More Death Eaters surround them, Lestrange taunting him as Malfoy continues to demand for the prophecy Harry held. He hoped the others were coming up with a solid plan, since all he had was killing time. Soon, though he helped relay to Hermione to have them all smash shelves as he continued talking with Malfoy, he learned his prophecy had the answer to why he’d been scarred. They take their chance, losing half their party on the way to the 2nd room, Harry, Hermione, and Neville fighting some Death Eaters. They soon do worse and it’s down to Neville being tortured and Harry wasting more time until Sirius and the group of 4 from the Order show up to help. By the end of it, Dumbledore had appeared, but not in time to save Sirius from falling through the veiled archway after being hit with a spell.

Harry is at first in denial, then upon seeing Lestrange attempt escape, follows her and has a one on one until Voldemort turns up, he ready to kill Harry, but Dumbledore protecting him and fighting the 2. Which upon Harry collapsing with scar pain, Voldemort and Lestrange escape which Fudge sees and can no longer deny. Dumbledore then begins giving instructions as to how Fudge shall proceed, he regaining his headmaster-ship. Harry is then sent back to Hogwarts to await everyone’s return by Portkey.

It lands him in Dumbledore’s office which he couldn’t leave, he overcome with having gotten Sirius killed. When Dumbledore arrives, he updates Harry on his buddies temporary condition, as well as Tonks. Harry soon loses his shit though, chucking Dumbledore’s breakables around, he verging on threatening Dumbledore, whom refused to let him leave, he wanting to confess why it was actually mostly his own fault Sirius was dead. This revelation stops Harry, Dumbledore starting again with Harry’s scar, but regarding why he’d been ignoring him was to calm the beast, so to speak, Voldemort possibly possessing Harry to get to him, or like in the Ministry of Magic, see if he’d kill Harry to get to Voldemort.

He goes on to confide how Kreacher had been able to lie to Harry about Sirius, and had revealed everything to Dumbledore, since it was a direct order, but also by truth jinx or whatever. He also regards Snape’s choices and how he’d actually helped, Harry not caring much, Dumbledore taking responsibility for not doing more with Harry’s training. After, he reveals a piece which he’d kept from Harry for 5 years, this stemming from the ancient protection charm his mother gave him through their shared blood, which was locked when her sister had taken him in. Dumbledore recaps his feeling to reveal the truth through each year Harry’d been at Hogwarts and eventually comes upon the weapon being the knowledge of how to kill Harry (which isn’t revealed), this within the prophecy (not) and the prophecy given by Trelawney. Harry soon also absorbs how someday, one or the other would have to die before the other could live, Dumbledore confessing his reason for not choosing him as prefect being due to the loads of responsibility Harry already bore.

Fudge gives the press update on the Ministry’s opinion of Voldemort being the correct one, now. Umbridge is rescued by Dumbledore, somehow unscathed, but she was quite shell-shock, clopping noises putting her on edge. Harry refrains from sharing the prophecy with Hermione and Ron, currently still on bed-rest and is waylaid from seeing Hagrid by the Malfoy trio, they interrupted by Snape, whom he loathed worse now. McGonagall interrupts by giving all the students at the Ministry of Magic points, so Snape could withdraw his measly 10 for almost cursing Malfoy, Harry then continuing to Hagrid’s, but soon leaves when he brings up Sirius.

Umbridge leaves the day before school ends and Harry opens the package Sirius gave him in case he wanted to talk. It didn’t work of course, it being like a telephone, Harry then getting no good answers from Nearly Headless Nick in regards to coming back after death, either. Also, even though he now knows why he must spend time at the Dursleys, it didn’t make the going there any easier. Cho had moved on with Ginny’s ex, she now dating Dean Thomas, this news not treating Ron any better than the first. The D.A. curse the shit out of Malfoy and his goons when they were readying to attack Harry on his way back to his carriage, the 3 remaining oozy messes. When the kids go through the station barrier, they’re greeted by some of the Order, who had the idea of speaking to the Dursleys before Harry began summer vacay with them to make sure they understood, they wouldn’t tolerate any misconduct against Harry, he not knowing how to thank them, so simply allows for all to bid him farewell til mid-end of summer.

The most uneventful, but easy read of a thick-ass book. I know I won’t be a re-reader, like so many others, but I’m glad to be finishing this series, since I’ve gotten through the movies a couple times and I still enjoy seeing the, hopefully fleshed out version in book form. This doesn’t particularly include this story, only because it meandered, which is great for beach reading, but only one spot near-ish to the end of the book being exciting; I referring to the Dept. of Mysteries fight against the Death Eaters. I am most definitely looking forward to the next, more slim book in the series.

The Mating Season

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Bertie states his overall pep had plummeted upon beginning his sentence at Deverill Hall, he having been summoned by Agatha to look after Thos for a few days. Jeeves admits his circumstances could’ve been better, Bertie attempting optimism of at least this being preferred to other options. He then backtracks to allow explanation of what had happened, Agatha coming to him to state of he putting Thos up in his flat whilst he went to doctors and shows before Bertie was sent to Deverill Hall where buddies of hers would house him whilst he pitched in at a village concert, he having gotten a good word from a vicar’s niece. So, he knowing his fate was sealed, was in no way comforted to learn Gussie would also be at Deverill Hall, as well. Bertie then mentions being calmed if he knew more about those who would be surrounding him, Jeeves supplying his host called Esmond Haddock, Bertie recognizing the handle and Jeeves informing him it was because he was related to the owner of a popular morning-after remedy, his father marrying a Deverill, their marriage thought of as a mésalliance – inferior social class marrying above their station, Deverill having needed the dough. Bertie mentions how well informed Jeeves was, he confessing to having a family member working for Deverill Hall, his Uncle Charlie Silversmith. Bertie then learning Esmond was single and lived with five aunts, Bertie considering Gussie’s presence may be a blessing with so many females about.

Bertie inquires why Gussie was also attending, Jeeves having heard from the man himself, whom had dropped in whilst Bertie was oot and aboot. Bertie asks how he’d been, and Jeeves noting of his seeming down, since he’d decided to go to Deverill Hall when Madeline had been going, but she having changed her plans to support a friend whom had love trouble. Bertie gets a bit colorfully mean when describing how Madeline’s idea of pepping up wouldn’t help any soul due to she being the one “God forgot”, but understood why Gussie’d be miffed. Also, Gussie confessed to Jeeves of their relationship currently simmering, this prospect putting Bertie on understandable edge. His attitude clearly showed his worry wouldn’t ease until ‘proof-of-purchase’ between the two was official. Bertie attempts feeling the bright-side by down-playing the chill between the two as temporary, and when hearing the doorbell, presumes it’s Thos, instructing Jeeves as to when the boy was expected to be ready to attend a show at the Old Vic, but Jeeves revealing it was more likely Pirbright, or Catsmeat, as Bertie likes to say, whom currently awaited entry. Jeeves relays of he and his sis, Corky also having called earlier, Bertie surprised since he expected Corky would be in Hollywood, Jeeves relaying she was currently vacationing, and earlier went to a film with Thos after they’d had tea. Bertie then inquires after the two sibs: Corky doing fine, but Catsmeat on the rocky side. Bertie decides to have Jeeves let the man in, and confirms Catsmeat’s look of woe.

Bertie mentions how uncommon Catsmeat being a negative sort was, then mentions his fam having an entertainment background, Corky also in the biz since teenage-dom, she having dynamism and (espièglerie – roguishness). Catsmeat, usually the best friend player on stage, keeps his temperament the same as when not working, friends at the Drones who have done his play, saying he’s a “Groucho Marx” type. Currently, Catsmeat was looking so down as to be as depressed as a character from “a Russian drama”, Bertie then apologizing for having missed he and Corky earlier. Catsmeat explains Corky was the niece whom had spoken on Bertie’s behalf, he telling of their religious relation. Bertie thinks the country life would drive her nuts, but Catsmeat relates how she was in her element, then informs him of doing a two-man act from his play, Bertie now warming to the idea of having to perform, but wondering and learning why Catsmeat hadn’t gotten the part, it being due to his bad standing with the females at Deverill Hall, Bertie wanting his opinion of what he was in for, but Catsmeat revealing he didn’t know them, they only disliking him because he was getting hitched to their niece, which brought him to his purpose of coming, Bertie supplying restorative which did its duty.

Catsmeat begins by declaring his pure affection for Gertrude, the two head-over-heels, but of course, upon her mother and aunts hearing of this, it going terribly, since they had a discriminative view of actors, and Gertrude unable to go against her mother. On top of this, Catsmeat would soon be on his way to Hollywood for a job and didn’t want to leave before attaching the ole ball and chain (like Joy in the Morning), this because of Esmond, Gertrude’s fam preferring she marry Moneybags, he also a charmer whom had already attempted to go after Corky. Catsmeat then comes to how he planned for Bertie to help, which was to Siamese twin himself to Gertrude to dissuade any alone romantic time with Esmond, Bertie allowing he must rally round due to their vast school history, Catsmeat quite pleased, and offering his services to any favor Bertie may have, which made him recall Gussie (poulet rôti au cresson – roast chicken with watercress– yum) and didn’t want him talking himself out of his union with Madeline, Bertie believing Catsmeat could charm the gloom away. He at first hesitates, but agrees when learning Bertie’s plans tied him, the latter now calmed and unknowing how the next day would find him.

Apparently, the next day brought positive attitudes, Bertie sending Thos off to Borstal, and he in grand ole mood, going through his day with ease, his suspicions perking when coming home to certain noises of dog and lady, Bertie curious what this could mean, and walking in to be brought down by a mixed breed dog as Corky watched with affection. Bertie describes her looks being finer than before, but they being great at the start, as well. He tells how she’d be high on the list of beauties if considered for the cast in a desert island role. She then introduces her pup, and inquires after Bertie’s health, etc and vice versa, they going through the motions, and catching up on the deets of missing each other the day before, as well as being certain he’d gotten the Pat and Mike script, and Bertie confirming he’d been studying it, then inquiring whom had gotten the opposite role, Corky sharing it was a Constable Dobbs. She makes clear when Bertie is to whack Dobbs with the umbrella in the play, he was to do so with gusto, she defending her uncle on his behalf, since Dobbs was an atheist, he shoving it in her uncle’s face whenever he could.

Bertie steps up to the challenge proudly, Corky thanking him. She then shares how the town expected his comic stylings to be top billing, the rest of the show-runners being residents of the area, and Esmond even singing a ditty, her tone changing upon voicing the name. Bertie catches on, and broaches the subj. sensitively, Corky confiding what had occurred when Bertie relayed what he’d heard. After stating of dropping Esmond due to being a coward at standing up to his aunts, Bertie defends the act, but notes of Corky ignoring his words, a common act for the females in regard to Bertie. Corky confesses how despite calling off their wedding due to he not having the courage to share their plans with his aunts, she was still gaga for him. Bertie was aware of the emotion this brought up in her, but doesn’t get too mushy with sentiments, he moving on to the aunts and Corky believing he’d dislike them, calling them “bitches”, Bertie gladly distracted by her dog again, since knowing Corky’s family had difficulty in solidifying their plans of marriage, she stating similarly in Catsmeat’s regard with Gertrude, the man himself interrupting them as they start to speak of his best options. The two greet him and note his deflated manner wordlessly. Bertie senses Catsmeat was also dealing with the aftermath of a night of drinking so has Jeeves respond in kind by a request for his elixir. When Bertie sees Catsmeat’s attempt to nod off, he’d been readying to allow it, but Corky shakes him up to inquire why he’d broken his promise to stay sober, Catsmeat blaming Gussie’s company made it impossible. He then proceeds to relate of Gussie getting sentenced to fourteen days for being threatened by Catsmeat to swim in the Trafalgar fountain and a cop catching him, Jeeves then returning with drink.

Bertie recalls a memory of his twelfth year whilst at Malvern House, a private educational institution where a Reverend Upjohn relayed a story about a soldier, whom did an unselfish act, and upon completing the moral of the story, getting on Bertie’s case for having an absent-minded look on his face. Bertie resists taking Jeeves’ remedy himself, Catsmeat’s health looking much restored, he then peeved about Jeeves’ reaction to his remembering when Gussie was expected at Deverill, and his current jail-birdery. The only fortunate part so far was Catsmeat revealing Gussie had been quick enough to not give his real name, Jeeves then decides to deposit the currently teething mutt in the kitchen, he unable to focus on Bertie’s important issues. Corky then inquires why Bertie was so invested, he confessing he and Madeline’s difficult history, going through where it’d begun with Gussie being too shy to begin the pourparlers (preliminary discussion) and Bertie offering to relay Gussie’s feelings, and Madeline keeping him as back-up fiancé if needs arise, Corky seeing his point.

Bertie then describes his worst fear would be realized if he had to attend his own wedding, revealing his middle name: B.W.W. (only initials will I supply). Corky had seen a picture of Madeline and hadn’t met her, not knowing her looks, whilst having much, didn’t compensate for her personality, which she had daisies and fairies filling the mold. She also admits to not knowing Gussie, Bertie suggesting she ask around to confirm his thoughts on the couple being two peas, etc. She then confirms Bertie’s worry on flapping in the wind if Madeline decided to look elsewhere for marriage, he making clear his only option, if Madeline changed her plans in order to become his little wife, he’d have no option other than to agree, she then wondering how Bertie would be able to leave Madeline ignorant to Gussie’s current whereabouts, Bertie relying on Jeeves. The man himself walks in and determines there is a way out, but questioned whether Bertie would accept it, he describing someone would need to pretend to be Gussie, and if Bertie couldn’t get a buddy to do it, would need to take on the personality himself.

Bertie definitely soured on the idea, and then recalls Catsmeat, he yelling for him, waking him, and then has Jeeves repeat his plan to him, Catsmeat agreeing it was a great idea when thinking Bertie would be playing the role (Bertie’s gentle coaxing being a hilarious moment), but Bertie sharing of they preferring he did it, Catsmeat backing out immediately. Bertie empathizes with Catsmeat’s negative memory of the fellow, he resorting to the same go-to as his buddies do on his behalf, he beginning with Catsmeat being within range of Gertrude, Corky supporting this, but Catsmeat piling on reasons for Gussie being characteristically at odds with himself, he being a schmo of maximum degree whilst Catsmeat was seen as a prized specimen, concluding how no one would be fooled, but Bertie being able to pull off the deception in spades.

Bertie immediately is taken aback, Corky giving Catsmeat a hard time, since he was giving up the opportunity to sway Esmond’s interest, but Catsmeat content to let Bertie handle the situation the way they agreed. Bertie then steps up to the dirty job with grace, Catsmeat satisfied, bows out to Bertie’s room for more uninterrupted z’s, Corky also leaving due to other plans, she informing how devastated the townsfolk would be when updated Bertie would be subbed with Gussie. Bertie stops her before she leaves without her dog, she detailing how she hoped to have Bertie bring him with him to Deverill in order to warm her Uncle to the idea, Bertie having reservations on how a canine like him would make him look. Corky reminds him it’d be Gussie whom they all would believe had brought the pup and would most likely be happier it was a mutt than lizards. After she’d hastened out, Jeeves lets on how he understood Bertie’s unfair circumstance, then quotes Marcus Aurelius, Bertie unimpressed and ready to get a move on before it became too late.

Bertie notes how whilst he hadn’t arrived at the witching hour, he had been terribly late, his car not helping his timing, and once he’d gotten to the doorbell, it was twenty after eight. On a previous occasion, Bertie is reminded of a moment with Jeeves where he’d quoted something from the Middle Ages which gave impression to being suspicious of the surroundings (Roland going to the Dark Tower, which I had been unaware was something before Stephen King, but now I’ve researched further, it makes more sense), Bertie understanding this sentiment, since he admired the aesthetic greatness of the property, but also couldn’t ignore the aunts soon to be in his midst and Esmond’s eventual loathing for him due to his mission. When Bertie is greeted by an impressively large butler, he makes certain to correct his presumption of being himself and claims Gussie’s name. Charlie Silversmith made Bertie feel like a blushing young idler (flâneur), Jeeves’ Uncle Charlie an imposing fellow, the dog reacting with unrest, Bertie feeling for the pup, and Charlie stating he’d have the dog led to the stables, then pointing Bertie to a sink, since dinner had begun without him and he wouldn’t be able to change clothes, Bertie quite rattled by this, but hanging in there, he then thrown to the dogs, aunts all around him, he lastly noting Esmond and Gertrude at the end of the table.

Bertie understood Catsmeat’s point of view of the girl’s charm, he pondering the young lovers’ fates as the aunts continued their mystifying choice of discussion, but then another aunt brings conversation around to having met the vicar, and if Augustus could explain the nature of the “cross-talk act”, Bertie alright with this, since he hadn’t wanted to allow Gussie to get a bad rap for not joining the chat and then having Madeline learn of this. Bertie describes the skit, it getting an all around thumbs-down from the aunts, they supporting Gussie not being in the play and how Madeline would’ve disapproved, anyways. This news froze Bertie to the core, he not considering Madeline’s posish on the subj, he realizing he’d have to warn Corky she’d need to discover a new Pat. The aunts then move on to how they’d heard Bertie was the right sort for acts of this kind, wondering where he could be, the chap must being the eccentric sort. Dame Daphne, lead aunt, declares how Agatha had mentioned debating whether Bertie would be better off “in a home”, these words souring Bertie a bit, he believing some kinder words should’ve been on the docket what with relenting to leading Thos about for the last few days; “a thankless aunt”, indeed. Bertie would’ve been glad for a proper drink, but was getting the Gussie treatment (definitely covered in the TV show). Then an aunt mentions Bertie’s escapade with cop helmet, Bertie sharing the actual story for them, but moving on when realizing it wasn’t helping his case for lightening the mood, he telling a tale of two deaf men on a train, one aunt stating and relaying this to the deaf aunt in their presence. Bertie, unfortunately now having to relate the not so nice joke, goes as expected, the deaf aunt getting a more friendly version, the aunts eventually bowing out and Bertie moving toward Esmond to have a chat and hopefully a nightcap.

As Bertie got a better view of Esmond, he again could relate why Catsmeat would be up in arms of a man of this caliber after his lady love. Esmond looks the sort to be a sensitive, handsome soul with the body of a broad fighter. Bertie waits patiently whilst Esmond took his time starting a conversation, Bertie drinking in the well-filled wine carafe, until Esmond spoke of not having quite understood his story, Bertie relaying it with confusion after Esmond spoke of hearing “Woking”, but he stating he got it before Bertie could correct himself. Esmond then notices Bertie’s bothered look when he refills his glass, Esmond offering him some, which Bertie snaps for with innocence of “trying it”. The two get on rather well as they continue their wining together, Esmond taking a leap at confiding his feelings to Gussie, Bertie having forgotten, but bedazzled by Esmond’s top-notch hosting skills, saying so, and the two side-tracking with compliments to each other, Esmond noting how he felt comfortable enough with Gussie to reveal why he was down, he head-over-heels for Corky.

Then Esmond explains how the nonsense of he loving his cousin, Gertrude had come from a film, he testing the idea in order to make Corky jealous after she’d ended their courting, Bertie properly lightened in knowing Catsmeat’s girl was safe, Bertie wanting to reassure Esmond of Corky still having loads of affection for him, but satisfies with moral support, Esmond allowing his will still being strong, especially after Corky had enlisted his singing talents for the concert, he only plagued by nerves, regardless of his being beloved by townsfolk, but betting on the good feedback to warm Corky further, he sharing the song he planned to sing being a little ditty written by two of his aunts. This worries Bertie a bit, Esmond offering to sing it for his opinion, and starting at the chorus, Bertie halting him for thinking it was he relaying being on a phone, Esmond clarifying it was a hunting tune (the next few beats had me laughing out loud for the absurdity, great stuff!), Bertie having to suggest he leave out adding Gussie’s name at the end of a line, Esmond taking it one more time, Bertie then suggesting he may want to flesh out the chorus due to the repeating words, he giving a fair substitute, and then laying on a few more adds for safety measures, Esmond properly thankful and in awe at his cleverness.

The two continue working on the lyrics, Bertie taking his gusto a bit too far, Dame Daphne walking in and huffing about the state of them, Bertie getting his first glimpse of a put-down Esmond, he losing respect for the fellow as he explained the need for practice. She informs and commands he join Gertrude for a game of backgammon, he leaving heavy-footed, and then turning her attention to Bertie and inquiring whether he was responsible for the pup in the stable, Bertie having forgotten the mutt, then relaying he’d been keeping him for Corky, her attitude darkening, as he shared of Corky’s reasons for this, Daphne then informing him, dog had broken out and was amongst those in “the drawing-room”.

Bertie finds himself sticking up for Sam Goldwyn, (Mr. dog-sir) he usually composed “compos.”, but his current mood stemming from his bond to Bertie, which he found sweet. Daphne told of seeing it in a more serious light, since Charlotte was currently overcoming her trauma of giving the animal a piggy-back ride, of which was forced upon her, Bertie seeing this as just desserts for writing such a sub-par tune. Daphne then informs how Charlie had sustained injury, but getting the dog into a closet, the next move being to ship him to the vicarage, which upon Bertie offering to take care of, is instead told to call it a night. Bertie was satisfied with this suggestion, since the going rate usually had a guest sitting through many dull entertainments, Bertie ready to contact Jeeves. Charlie appears out of nowhere when Daphne mentions his name, Bertie thinking the talent must be genetic, and before the man leaves him, Bertie asks him to send for his man, not expecting Catsmeat, but getting him.

Bertie considers how he’d have reacted in Childe Roland’s era where peeps were getting transformed left and right, the idea of Jeeves being turned into Catsmeat handled with ease and grace, but he having a shock making him look like the lovesick wolf, eyes a-pop (this being where I would normally supply an image, but nothing up to par, so for those who haven’t seen The Mask, watch it, laugh, and know to what I refer). Bertie mistakenly refers to Catsmeat by his name, he reminding him he was his butler, Meadowes, and informs him Jeeves wouldn’t be able to attend, Bertie looking to the wall and inquiring why he hadn’t joined him. Catsmeat explains it was due to his Uncle figuring something was amiss if he saw Jeeves was suddenly employed by Gussie. Whilst Bertie allowed this, he wondered why Jeeves hadn’t confided this to him, Catsmeat relaying how it had dawned on him after Bertie had gone and the idea of bringing Charlie in on the deets wouldn’t have worked due to the man’s strict morals.

Catsmeat then shares how he’d required fortification after meeting the man, he afterward going off on a tangent about the cooking sherry he’d tasted and the parlour maid whom gave it to him, she engaged to the local law enforcement, Dobbs, and when Bertie brings them back on topic about why Catsmeat had decided to come as his butler, he expands on how it would be his reason to shadow Gertrude, but when Bertie isn’t behind his cause, Catsmeat immediately gets chilly, then talking Bertie out of all of his ideas of any other place about town he could’ve stayed, moving on to whether he’d approached Gertrude, yet, she having received a moment to see him, and in complete shock when recognizing him. The two hadn’t spoken though, Bertie then sharing Esmond’s words, which were quite a comfort to Catsmeat, he then deciding to go, but Bertie informing him to relay to Corky of he having to decline the role of Pat, Catsmeat agreeing, Bertie’s good news for him not keeping his emotions on the high side. Bertie was able to remedy this with a good novel of “Murder at Greystone Grange“, this lulling him to unconsciousness, but right before nodding off, believing he’d heard the commotion of another guest downstairs, and upon the morn, his tea being brought by Charlie, whom still seemed frazzled about the dog, Bertie inquires if he’d heard rightly of a late guest, Charlie not denying this and stating it was Wooster, he then leaving him with the confusion of his name, Jeeves then coming in with his breakfast.

Bertie was in such a state, fresh off his reading about supernatural subjects, he at first believed Jeeves was an apparition, but when smelling the bacon, comes to his senses, Jeeves greeting him and stating how he’d rightly supposed Bertie would want to take breakfast solitarily. He comments on his Uncle Charlie’s seriousness, Jeeves agreeing to this and Bertie in awe he’d called the man Charlie, what with his personality not seeming friendly enough for it. He then gives opinion on the yumminess of the bacon, the two chatting of the goodness of kippers and ham also aiding the positivity in starting the day. Bertie then remembers a question needing asking, he wanting to learn the meaning of Jeeves’ presence, the man supplying he’d come with Gussie, Bertie quite shocked with the news. They then get to the thick of how Gussie had gotten released, a palm getting greased, and Esmond not knowing the meaning of trying times. Jeeves then explains how Gussie needed to be present at the Hall in order to write daily to Madeline, Bertie realizing this logic, and Jeeves then explaining on Gussie not being happy because of having to fill in for him in the stage act, as well as how Bertie had been handling Gussie’s doings at the Hall thus far, he knowing if Madeline was apprised he’d be in trouble.

Then, turning to Catsmeat’s matter of love, Jeeves reveals he having confided in him, Bertie marveling at how common it was, and Jeeves enjoying his ability to aid the lovesick, and this need having brought on the idea of he going in Jeeves’ place. Bertie shares how it would’ve been nice if they’d thought to warn him, he then making certain Jeeves had learned Catsmeat’s trouble was fairly fixed, but Esmond still having a time in front of him, Bertie catching Jeeves up on how Esmond planned to win Corky’s love publicly, but Corky not flipping for anything short of a rebellion against his aunts, Jeeves considering the request possible, since if Esmond did get good ratings from the crowd, he may well find the courage to stand up to aunts, Bertie reminded of Bingo’s situation being similar, he then giving Jeeves the task of getting those about town to lend their cheers to Esmond, also making certain Jeeves set up a meeting place for he and Gussie to catch up, the post office being decided on in an hour, Bertie then requesting the start for a dip in the tub.

Bertie gets caught up in his bathing due to a bout of crooning to himself, and so discovers Gussie waiting for him at the place of government shipping of products, he noticing his bad mood, and learning he would have preferred prison what with having to put up with being Bertie being quite a nuisance, also realizing how Deverill would forever relate his person to Gussie’s appearance. Gussie proceeds with how the aunts of Deverill Hall were treating him as if a leper and brought up how Bertie was bringing his name down, as well, what with his drunken singing. Bertie explains how Esmond had required this and he hadn’t actually been drunk, but toasty, suggesting Gussie deny everything should Madeline hear anything, elaborating how the scene could be open for interpretation, which Gussie allows, but hopes Bertie can be mindful of his actions moving forward, and when Bertie brings up Catsmeat as a segue, Gussie is fired up by the new subj., since Catsmeat had been the cause of his jail time. Gussie then inquires about the two-man act, Bertie proceeding with care, he handing the script over to him as explanation.

As Gussie reads, he has a look of non-acceptance, and once learning Catsmeat was the author, sextuple-snorts his derision and speaks of not being surprised, then continues how misinformed Catsmeat sounded when it came to his characterization of Irishmen, and then has to be told the play had jokes sprinkled throughout, of which he had been unaware, and on top of this, learns the other player would be a police officer, halting him completely, since he’d be expected to hit the man with an umbrella and he’d already done this in Trafalgar Square, outright refusing, even deciding to let Corky know his decision firsthand, but promptly shuts up on sight of her, she coming toward them, along with her pup, Bertie deciding Corky’s ability to sway was definitely in order, and once greeting her and introducing her to Gussie, informs her of his being on-the-fence, and left her to her abilities. Bertie gets to his room un-harassed by aunts, and some time later Gussie reappears at his door looking quite pleased, explaining how after speaking with Corky, she’d made everything seem much more palatable. Gussie goes on to state how Bertie not performing was most likely best, since he wasn’t right for the role, the former defending his abilities. Gussie goes on to tell what Corky had said on the matter, which had himself looking perfect for the act.

Bertie sees the futility in arguing and lets him be, deciding to mention, regardless, Madeline would be opposed, so wouldn’t be able to prove himself anyways, then attempting to knock Gussie down by bringing up his issues with hitting Dobbs the cop, Gussie updating how Dobbs had been replaced, he arguing with Corky and then Sam Goldwyn biting him, the cop detaining the pup until learning whether he had a history of attacks, Gussie happy Catsmeat would be his new partner, and then gave Bertie the poems he needed to memorize for the performance, Madeline having requested this of Gussie, but he now quite happy to pass the task on, Bertie not feeling well with his new discomfiture.

Bertie’s V-shaped (possibly verse) melancholic days don’t become brighter, and when the second day of the week finds him, he’s ever closer to needing a variety of booze, his situation crying out for relief. What was truly bothering him most, though was how Gussie was acting, and the start stemming from their post-post office discussion, Gussie’s words tipping Bertie off and then laying its eggs in his brain until certainty of Gussie’s new love for Corky was plain, the aunts of Deverill Hall noticing the same and their comments not conducive to an Aunt Agatha report, Gussie practically Corky’s accessory since first meeting, and Bertie not wanting to fathom how Agatha would react. When he decides to share his woes with Jeeves, he learns Gussie had allowed him to go to a lecture back in London, so Bertie would have to seriously consider his problem, singly and deciding he’d have to press upon Corky how she could ease his mind by pushing Gussie away. So he biffs off to locate her when he’s called to by Dame Daphne, whom was poisoning some bugs in her rose garden, Bertie wary of her needle-carrying hand, what with the serious look on her face, he learning Gussie had apparently not sent a line to Madeline, she having sent a telegram, and Dame Daphne for-shaming Gussie on his insensitive conduct, Bertie wobbly with the news, he likening it to a Drones lad, Widgeon taking him by surprise on the street with an earful of horn.

Bertie again had bad imaginings of Madeline’s curiosity getting the best of her if Gussie didn’t write soon, he overcome by this for a little while before getting himself to walk again, and then ponders on how Corky, the fons et origo (origin) had doomed him. There was a time in their dancing days when Bertie had retaliated against Corky via wooden dumb-bell, which he’d regretted up to this point, but now hoped he’d get a second chance. As he practiced his lead-in to the conversation, he sees Corky in her car, but she busy about to attend to her uncle’s duties and having to rain-check his chat, she then sharing how Gussie was currently grabbing the soup required for her stop and after, the old lady she was visiting would keep her regaling Hollywood stories, she also sharing how handy Gussie had been for her lately, and also relating how Bertie’s cousin, Thos had gotten in touch with her about the autographed pictures she’d given him being a hit at his school, the boys normally not paying over 9p, but he getting 12p, she sharing how she’d also given him permission to visit on his mid-term break, then Gussie returns, puppy dog agog, until Corky drives off and Bertie pokes him between the ribs, and asks why he wasn’t writing Madeline, he giving the excuse of being booked solid for time because of the two-man act, Bertie demanding he drop her a line today, regardless, he looking put upon and then deciding he wouldn’t do it, to punish her for leaving him alone there, and when Bertie gives him ‘one last chance’, he sticks to his inaction and walks away, Bertie returning to see Catsmeat smoking one of his ciggies and looking like he was blissfully thinking of Gertrude.

Seeing Bertie helps him resurface, he having planned to discuss something in particular, Bertie replying with stink for having gotten tired of him, he believing Catsmeat had taken the job as his butler flippantly and hadn’t done anything to prove his loyalty to the position. Catsmeat updates how his letters via Jeeves to Gertrude was going quite well, and Bertie agrees it was bully for him, but Gussie was becoming an issue with his resistance in writing Madeline. Catsmeat sees the issue stemming from Gussie heart-ing Corky, and explaining why Corky was keeping Gussie strung being to do with proving to Esmond she was desired. Catsmeat then suggests Bertie confess to Corky Esmond’s true feelings, Bertie thinking the time may have passed what with Madeline’s last telegram, but Catsmeat holding out everything could be fixed. He gives the opinion Bertie should write Madeline in the guise of Gussie, he even supplying the note for him to copy, then informing him he had plans with Queenie, whom was having trouble with her fiance’ Dobbs, Queenie unable to get over his Atheism. So, Bertie writes out the letter, of which was to be envied for its perfect tone, and after dropping it off, hears Corky a-calling.

Bertie makes it so Corky can’t escape him like she’d done earlier, she making certain she wasn’t in for more Hollywood chat, then going off on how long-winded the old lady she’d visited had been, Bertie again having to wait until she remembered whom had started this conversation. When he mentions the subject of Gussie, and was explaining how he’d spoken with Catsmeat, she again interrupts to make sure they were both on the same page of knowledge regarding his plan to convince Gertrude to run off and marry him, Corky’s investment in this being how Esmond would handle the news. Bertie realizes her ploy in relation to Gussie was on point and jumps into setting Corky on the true path, she exceptionally pleased by the update, he then cluing her in on Jeeves contribution for when Esmond performed at the show, she realizing with the proper reception, he could grow some balls. Bertie then compares a similar scenario regarding Bingo Little, his wife, the novelist Rosie M. Banks, they now also with baby, and Bingo’s issue with acquiring a raise, and after his tot won a contest, had the courage to demand his raid, and receives it. Corky was readying to implement her part like Jeeves, getting an amenable crowd ready, but Bertie is adamant in finishing his request by making certain she was on-board with his Save Bertie’s Bachelorhood (WordPress gives me Bachelorhood, but so many other real words get the red-line?! Poppycock!), she agreeing without a fight. Bertie’s fresh relaxation was not to be kept, for upon returning to his room, Catsmeat places the news of Agatha soon to be in their midst, as an added bonus.

Bertie took the news soberly, he visibly stricken, but biding his time until Catsmeat had more information, he making the trip to London for Jeeves’ help. Catsmeat returns in the late afternoon to Bertie’s now supposedly masked anticipation, he retelling his experience thoroughly and ending with Jeeves’ idea involving Aunt Agatha leaving right quick when discovering ‘Young Thos’ was missing from school. The idea was to lure the boy into escape upon learning a favorite movie star was within meeting distance, a back up to the 5 quid also in reserve to sweeten the deal. Bertie believed the celeb would be plenty, though. Catsmeat thought he’d reward the lad regardless, since knowing Aunt Agatha would surely give him hell for bouncing out of school, Bertie commending him. As they discuss Corky and how easily she’d taken Catsmeat’s plan, they receive telegrams and Catsmeat urges Bertie to open them despite being addressed to Gussie. Catsmeat leaves Gussie to cheer up Queenie, Bertie’s resolve to wait for Real Gussie weakening. He submits, and opens one, it from Jeeves confirming all had gone accordingly, but instead of leaving the second letter alone, he learns it’s from Madeline and she on her way to Deverill Hall.

Bertie takes the news with grace, ‘hands holding head’. He waits for Catsmeat to return, waylaying him along with Queenie, whom had an unpleasant film-watching experience. Bertie didn’t have patience to ‘tut tut’ her misfortune, though, handing Catsmeat the note from Madeline. He makes a joke at Bertie’s expense for having caved on his morals and then admits they needed a plan, Bertie reminding him of how he’d helped this mess by getting Gussie into trouble in the first. Catsmeat makes valid claims of Bertie’s part in the matter, which in turn allows him to let sleeping dogs, etc. They then plan on discussing a new ruse to keep Madeline in the dark. The evening doesn’t end early, unfortunately, guests from around a 20 mile radius attending, so when Bertie saw his room it was nearly midnight, Catsmeat having left a note revealing he was off to implement his cracker jack of a plan the next day, with Bertie’s car to carry him. Knowing this partially eased Bertie’s anxiety, but knew it could be hit or miss with Catsmeat due to years before, seeing a comment written about him by their principal as he’d been questing for biscuits. Bertie prepares for sleep with a smoke when Gussie presents himself, complaining about the waste of time din din was, due to the guests and Corky not being present. Gussie then reveals he was there to borrow a tie from Bertie, whom hoped Gussie’s upcoming visit with Corky would knock him out of the sky with haste. Gussie then admits to finally having written to Madeline, Bertie realizing his earlier letter to her would now be suspicious. Gussie wasn’t pleased he’d gone rogue, but also not sweating it, since he’d broken off their engagement.

The Larches is described with the locals receiving the company’s ‘h’ and ‘c’ water (pff). Bertie was off to retrieve the letter of Doom before Madeline got hold of it and was considering the repercussions for his actions if the Constabulary found him out, but believed the felony justified his reasons. So, Bertie secreted himself in a bush at the address expecting the letter, including the pacing being mot juste to strolling. He then muses on how Nature turns her back on lurv as he’s accosted by the bright and warm weather along with a friendly multi-legged creature walking upon his person. As he deals with this, more worrisome is whether the proper requirements for his plan to work will be given to him. As he’s surprised by a ginger cat, someone opens a window nearby and a maid pops out the front door to dust a mat. Bertie sees to the dining room and thinks Madeline could very well come down for breakies when the mailman arrives and Bertie’s hopes are dropped, since Mr. Mailman was a young flirt and would be taking his time. Bertie readies himself to pounce when postman biffs off and the maid does as he thought and sets the mail at the table. This doesn’t gladden Bertie for long, since now the maid didn’t leave as he’d hoped, taking a smoke until scurrying off upon hearing something (Madeline). Bertie gets his dash of luck though, since she heads for the garden. The moment is of course marred by Bertie’s flowering cowardice, but also someone walking in with a dog which would’ve effected Bertie’s mission, as well, this being Madeline’s buddy. Bertie realizes this pup would definitely blow his cover, but kitty then took the opportunity to flee, the dog going after, and Madeline’s friend bringing up the tail-end. When he saw the trio turn the corner, Bertie fetches the letter. Unfortunately, he sees the girl and dog heading back toward him as he was in mid-getaway, so he multiple “nipped” his way to a room across the hall.

Bertie discovers he may have located Madeline’s buddy, Hilda’s room, due to the feminine quality and sports equipment strewn about. Bertie leaves this be in preference to the window of Freedom, but a red-faced gardener blocks his want of an unnoticed escape. So, like Bertie’s ill will to the lazy maid, he loathed this stand-about man. As he saves a framed photo of Madeline from falling as he was pacing, he had a light bulb mo. Gussie needed to have  a reminder of whom he was dumping, in Bertie’s fevered brain, so swiping the picture for Gussie as a possibility for his love to rekindle seemed like a good bet (supporting his optimism with other unlikely scenarios). Then, he is interrupted by an approaching maid, so thinking a bit less slowly, he ends up behind a sofa. The maid is called away from her hovering by Hilda, Madeline soon joining her. Whilst listening to them, Bertie felt empathy for her, believing she was emo about lurv. Madeline talks to her chum about the “happy flowers”, then shares her worry over Gussie’s lack of letters and wanting to see him sooner, Hilda not giving a toss.

As they talk, Bertie is brought up in regards to his yearning love for Madeline and how difficult for him it must be to write dictated letters to sweet, sweet Madeline. Hilda then becomes suicidally dark when admitting to having a firearm secreted away in her room, but backhandedly assures she wasn’t in danger of going through with it. She then puts her 2 cents in on how Madeline should handle Gussie, thinking Bertie a better option, since he had money. Madeline wasn’t amused and neither was Bertie, she then starts, seeing her picture wasn’t where it used to be, on the table. Hilda suggests she ask the maid and as Madeline checks, Hilda allows her big pup to wander off the couch, where he immediately snuffles around Bertie, surprised by what his nose leads him to, backing off and sound the doggy alarm. Madeline returns, shocked to see Hilda with her pistol and leaving Bertie with questions as to Hilda’s plan of action. As Hilda explains to Madeline what she had in mind, she speaks at the mystery man to reveal himself.  Madeline screams upon seeing Bertie as Hilda contemplates a good frisking to see if Bertie had more stolen goods on him. Madeline shares Bertie’s identity with Hilda, she leaving them to talk out Bertie’s issue of obv. love with Madeline. Bertie meanwhile, wasn’t looking forward to the experience.

Bertie attempts to relieve the silence with a general statement about the weather and his reason for being there only to pop by and update Madeline of Gussie’s health, as well as why he had Madeline’s portrait being for Gussie’s use, ofc! Bertie doesn’t receive the calming response his words deserved, though. Instead Madeline looks saddened, asking Bertie if he’d read a particular Rosie Banks novel, she giving him the plot, and he commenting as she goes (hilariously). When she finishes, Bertie couldn’t believe the reason Banks’ crap was so popular. Madeline then likens Bertie to the protagonist who’s love was spurned and dies before getting a happily ever after. Madeline shares why Hilda was being emo was caused by a man called Harold hogging the tennis ball they were on the same team to swat. She ended their engagement because of this turd thinking he was more talented and should shoulder the game. Madeline finished by how torn up she was, when Hilda reenters with a tune on her lips, she having received a letter from the oaf and would forgive him in a couple of days.

Hilda then relays how Claude Pirbright had dropped by to see Madeline and before she goes, gives Bertie a kind word about the “predicament of unrequited nonsense” she found the two of them in and how they’d laugh about it in their grey years, perhaps a bit mistily. Hilda returns back inside after an encouraging word for the gardener outside, she learning how Bertie also knew “Beefy” Harold Anstruther and her plans to return Bertie where he belonged, beside Madeline. She invites him to breakies, but he declines since he wanted to catch Catsmeat for any news, he withering at the thought of her influence on Madeline as he goes. When he sees Catsmeat coming though, he was speed-racing to the point of missing Bertie’s attempts at flagging him down, so returns for nourishment and then Deverill Hall.

So, the ride back wasn’t the most convenient and the first person Bertie recognizes is his cuz, “young Thos”, whom immediately calls attention to Bertie’s drabness, he swatting him as he passed. Corky then greets him from her car, mentioning how Sidney, her unc. had taken to Thos and she thought of him fondly, Bertie of course surprised by any sort of goodwill in relation to his cousin seeming out of place. She explains how Thos offered to bludgeon the local cop for nicking Sam Goldwyn and saw his invitation as sweet. As Bertie struggled with this news, Corky goes on to speak of Catsmeat whom received news from his love, Gertrude about her eagerness to run off with him. Bertie’s response makes her realize he was distrait and had taken a side-trip to hell before getting back to Deverill. Corky listens to his tale attentively, Bertie quite pleased she didn’t interrupt and even gasped at appropriate deets. After which, Bertie couldn’t help but think, due to all his vibrant living, Death coming a-knocking didn’t sound terrible.

Corky did supply some decent information in return, though; Catsmeat had been able to redirect the Bassett away from Deverill, Bertie responding with praise to the above. Corky though, hadn’t shared his uplifted feeling quite as much, she expounding how Bertie’s news about the portrait and Mervyn Keene made her wonder if perhaps more should’ve been done. This stops Bertie cold, metaphor of what Catsmeat’s attempt to help looked like being closer to inadvertent torture ensuing. Upon hearing what he had said of Bertie to dissuade Madeline distressed him to his core. Madeline’s reaction of course, containing the flowery response one expects. Corky supported the idea of seeing the bright side and at how the knowledge had stopped Madeline for now. Bertie made use of this supportive realization, minimizing the fear, she supportive of he seeing the ‘correct’ view. Bertie learns she planned on working on Gussie upon finishing a job for her. Bertie catches the implication immediately and wasn’t detoured by Thos tipping him as he entered the car, Corky avoiding providing any more information about this ‘job’, to Bertie’s animal instinctive fear, but learned Esmond Haddock had found his way to Deverill upon returning from his walkabout.

Dame Daphne had made a new rule about port not concluding supper anymore and Bertie had yet to find time to speak with Esmond, since his arrival. His chance is given, though when meeting him in some area of the estate, the two starting with pleasantries until Bertie mentions seeing Corky outside. Esmond attempts to inquire more, but has a swallowing attack (similar to ‘whatting’), before asking Wooster if ‘Wooster’ was with her, Bertie confirming her solo ‘flying’ and Esmond showing heat over how often Gussie (Wooster) did seem to hang about her as of late. Bertie doesn’t help his emotion by supplying how long he/Gussie had known Corky since childhood and leaving thoughts of youthful dance class and passing time together wasn’t leaving Esmond with a soothing head-space.

Esmond asks about Bertie and Gussie’s history, as well, he relating how popular he’d been as a school boy and his general likability, Esmond focusing on perceived character flaws and not having gotten good vibes from Gussie’s Wooster persona, giving the metaphor of Gorgonzola cheese being his home of origin. Bertie attempts to soften Esmond’s view, but is rebuffed by how Aunt Daphne had only just mentioned Bertie’s bad behavior with the policeman helmet snatching. When Bertie explains the reasoning for said transgression, Esmond regards Bertie’s view with distaste. He states how this tom foolery wasn’t an isolated incident. Bertie this time letting this be and Esmond continuing about how they’d be ready for any Wooster mischief since the local fuzz was on board to capturing him for any misstep and Esmond would be able to throw the 30 day book at him. Bertie felt the possible heat as he and Esmond split off, talking aloud of Jeeves being handy, now. The man himself appears looking quite rejuvenated, his usual mysterious poofing out of nowhere, alive and well.

Jeeves begins cordially, asking if allowed to provide an opinion, Bertie eager to hear his wisdom. Even after clarifying, it was on the topic of attire, Bertie welcoming the dig and even supplies one to Jeeves to see if he determined the issue correctly. Jeeves believed he overshot a bit, but decided he’d certainly been better put together before (soine), Bertie immediately word relation-popping a half thought through song involving ‘Swanee River’, but leaves it be. As Jeeves states his intention of cleaning Bertie’s suit, it is noticed the not-so-foolish young sir was preoccupied with anxiety. Jeeves put forth how he’d thought how Thos was in place and Aunt Agatha not being, was going accordingly. Bertie agrees, but clarifies the main course of issues sprung from Gussie because of he being targeted by fuzz, as well of course the mysterious errand Corky had in store for Gussie. Which reminds Jeeves how Esmond would be set for a friendly audience, Bertie continuing on the topic of Corky and how she required revenge for her dog’s arrest and knew she’d be planning something for fuzz Dobbs. Which meant, if she planned on using Gussie in relation to illegal activities, he’d definitely be clinked. Before Jeeves can reply, Bertie concludes with a statement which he notes was Jeeves-like and had expected his reply to cover the range mentioned, being Gussie wouldn’t intentionally break the law due to his upbringing and nature, but also knew how impressionable he was, especially with Corky involved. So all of this was putting Bertie on edge, but was buoyed by Jeeves offering to speak to him in order to provide reason. The topic turns to Catsmeat’s happiness and back to Esmond’s warm public, before Bertie mentions Gussie’s possible whereabouts and to acquire Thos’ bludgeon. They end their conversation to begin their tasks for the day, when Bertie sees Gussie exiting a cottage, this being the Police HQ, and he being accompanied by Dobbs.

Bertie marveled at the officer and his particular body type: Robust, but petite horizontally. He was noted to also look quite steely in strength. Currently, he seemed to be experiencing a trying situation what with the look he was sporting. Gussie greets the officer as he passes to enter the office and as soon as he’s out of sight, Bertie accosts Gussie with need for explanation. Officer Dobbs comes back out with a shovel before Gussie can answer, scattering frogs which had been sitting upon it, Gussie then suggests Bertie and he move along, afterward wasting time with declaring whom Dobbs was, the two confirming this for a moment. Gussie repeats his agreement several times as he gathered his thoughts, then he relates to Bertie’s single run-in with the law and how unpleasant it is. Bertie asks the obvious question then, what had Gussie done, the man stating he’d been “strewing frogs” about. Specifically, in Dobbs’ boudoir, our Vicar Catsmeat having thought of the ruse.

Corky was whom had put the idea to action though, she becoming irate over Dobbs’ dislike of her pooch, she thinking one of God’s plagues may lighten his heart toward Sam Goldwyn, she enlisting Gussie’s help, since he was so willing. Bertie was in shrieking agony within at how Gussie had gone so far in life without a stint in a mental institution. Upon hearing how Gussie had been caught, he’d only just been able to make out like a proper bandit, since Dobbs hadn’t caught him in the act and there wasn’t any proof, Gussie having straight up lied when Dobbs asked if he’d brought them in, he then announcing abruptly how he’d best let Corky know Sam Goldwyn would be stuck, what with the ole boy now having a history as a snapper, this being when Gussie was making his way out, being trailed by Dobbs, Bertie hoping nothing and no one worse would cross his path.

Bertie stealthily continued on, believing he could hear Aunts echoing voices in the distance, and thinking he’d bypassed them successfully, then sees the one Aunt he’d wanted to avoid: Dame Daphne. Unlike some who had the power to acknowledge monsters and retreat quickly, Bertie became stuck there, he responding to her inquiry as to whether he’d written Madeline and he also supplying carefully why he looked frumpy being due to going to visit Madeline, Dame Daphne horrifyingly pleased and sending for some OJ. Uncle Charlie, finally turns up after a couple jangles from the bell, explaining his delay was caused by his daughter becoming engaged. Bertie was surprised because Silversmith was related to the girl, Queenie and then trying to remember why he recognized the fiance’s name of Meadowes. Silversmith admits Meadowes was Fink-Nottle’s ‘personal attendant’, his look implying to Bertie, the man saw him as a family style equal. Bertie is now worried, Dame Daphne orders OJ for Bertie and insists he change. Bertie requests Meadowes bring his drink so he could congratulate him. When Catsmeat finally appears, Bertie gauges he looked a bit cloudy-eyed from his new status.

The first thing to pass Catsmeat’s lips is his misfortune. Bertie immediately enlisting Jeeves’ help when Catsmeat asks for his suggestion on how to fix his upcoming event. Catsmeat is led into describing how he’d gotten to this point. He begins with how he’d been in such a dreamy mood from Gussie’s message, he’d found himself in the servant’s hall where he came across Queenie crying. In an attempt to comfort her, he’d cooed encouraging words and then began kissing her better; like a sibling, according to him. Which is how Silversmith found them, she setting upon his knee, his arm about her waist and Silversmith, accompanied by Gussie, (Dun, Dun, DUN!). Silversmith’s reaction was at first potentially damaging for Catsmeat, Queenie deciding their engagement was the simplest solution. This being cause for Gussie to send a new message for their plans being open once more, with the exception of Catsmeat still having to do his cross-talk act, Bertie countering with he being stuck with a Christopher Robin poem, Catsmeat shooting back at least it wasn’t Pooh poems, Bertie relenting.

The show was to begin at 8:15 pm, Bertie sitting among the crowd for the start, he now understanding why Corky had been annoyed with the talent, but the audience, of course not being concerned with the quality. These talents were the Kegley-Bassington brood. As Bertie peered at the unyielding faces of the men about him regarding the show thus far, Bertie didn’t feel hopeful of his chances, and to top it off with Reverend Pirbright opening the show with a speech, gave Bertie insight as to the type of host he was, it not being the high energy jokester sort, but Bertie listing his collection of reasons for being somber having to do with Corky, Gussie, and young Thos staying in the spare room. Pirbright focuses his introduction on the Church Organ he then introducing the first act, an unimpressive violinist, before Kegley-Bassingtons began, the first of them escaping jabs, Bertie thinking he may survive, each girl getting fair enough reaction.

George K-B was up next, he reciting a poem which didn’t suit his nature and his family from the wings starting the poem for him when they thought he’d forgotten, he begrudgingly and quickly saying the words and the masses being acceptant, Bertie hoping this boded well for his odds. The act after got the crowd in a decent mood, but then Catsmeat and Gussie fuck it up with their lackluster performance, the two each looking and sounding foully sad and moody. This makes the dialogue sound darker and the punch lines failing to hit. Then Gussie stops speaking his responses and Catsmeat does both sides of the conversation, which by the end, the two retreat with bowed heads, Esmond up next and singing a-hunting, etc. The young man had prepared properly with booze, he getting the wildest response, and giving 4 encores and the crowd still staying receptive. The next act was an odd dance, the crowd after she’d finished, began chanting for Esmond’s return to stage. They winning their wish, Intermission dropping after, Bertie going out for a smoke quite pleased and then chilled with the realization Christopher Robin was no longer available in his brain, he reminded of the idea of drink, immediately awaying to the bar.

As he has a look-see about the place, he spots Jeeves at a table, having a “meditative” beer. Jeeves greets him per his usual way and confirms his mission was a success, regarding retrieval of the cosh from Master Thomas, but Bertie must attempt twice to steer Jeeves toward the subject of his being quite up the hole. Jeeves listens as he describes the depths of his being through the wood, Jeeves probing over Bertie’s used memory methods, he relaying the bar was the attempt, Jeeves immediately suggesting a double brandy, which Bertie doubles. As he begins, he only vaguely recalls the poem included a “hoppity hoppity hop”, but completely recalled ‘”Ben Battle”‘ Jeeves being of the opinion George Kegley-Bassington “barely” performed well enough to pass. Bertie clarifies his reason for mentioning it was because he no longer had any leftover space for Christopher Robin, the liquid memory booster not boosting. Jeeves suggests they hand over the responsibility to Esmond, whom should welcome another chance to impress his fans, he having a book which would’ve been to prompt Bertie with the lines if need be. He contemplates whether to allow Jeeves to ask, reasoning how well-liked Esmond currently was, which was his deciding factor.

As he awaits outside the bar looking at the stars, he’s interrupted by Gussie in costume inquiring if he’d acquire some brandy for him. Bertie provides without a third-degree to his buddy’s non-milky request and watches as he gulps half and describes the flavor as appalling which then gives Bertie the chance to ask why he’d wanted it, since he’d already finished his performance shittily. Gussie acknowledges how most would be if they had the task of breaking out a dog from the clink, as well. Bertie now wished for brandy and confesses how Gussie should reconsider what with Esmond wanting a reason to put Gussie away and Dobbs was waiting for his chance, too. Gussie gains confidence with the fact of Dobbs being busy watching the show, Bertie feeling slightly better for him, and Gussie not caring since he was all about impressing Corky, biffing off thusly. Jeeves then arrives stating his success, Bertie noting he must’ve needed some buttering what with the length of time passing. Jeeves informs it was actually caused by Dobbs, whom had mentioned having decided to skip the remainder of the concert in preference of a good book at his cottage. Bertie’s face shows his shock, he revealing why he was frazzled. Jeeves inquires if Bertie would want to attempt in helping Gussie escape. Bertie didn’t see hope in this, but agrees, and as they make their way to Dobbs, Bertie wonders what would make Jeeves exclaim with a “coo!” or “crumbs!” and learns Jeeves hope doesn’t waiver if there be breath left (decent rule of thumb). Bertie disagrees with his philosophy and fantasizes Gussie has already been caught by Dobbs.

As Jeeves disagrees, they are overcome by Corky, whom had seen Gussie pass not long before. As Bertie is unloading the most recent information regarding Dobbs’ whereabouts, they hear a barking increase in volume as it approaches closer, Corky berating Bertie for almost scaring her, Sam Goldwyn belting his way at them happily. After Corky secures pup in car, she mentions crashing the Hall later, then leaves hastily. Not long do the two stand before hearing a tapping noise, Jeeves veering Bertie to darkness before they see Gussie and Dobbs running by, Bertie impressed with Gussie’s green be-bearded skill. It wasn’t long before Gussie’s instincts fail him though, since if he’d kept running, he’d have been free as a bird, but instead, like a bird, shimmies up a tree, instead.

Dobbs, now caught up, suggests he climb down, Jeeves saving the simpleton with his recently acquired cosher. Jeeves also offers to remove the green gummed-on beard for Gussie, whom is quite dazed himself at this point. Bertie aways back to the bar for another restorative before going back to the Hall for snacks and a change of wardrobe. Bertie also gave fancy to the ease with which Jeeves seemed to have comfortably resorted to violence and whether it could ever be turnt upon himself, but settled with knowing Jeeves would have to forget etiquette completely. He is encompassed by stray thoughts as Gussie appears without beard and cleaned up, reminding Bertie of his need to change, what with buffet snacks downstairs to look forward to, he also noticing Gussie’s nervous energy.

Bertie focused on dressing until a groan escapes Gussie’s throat as he stares at a picture of a woman being stared at by a gentleman, Gussie inquiring if Bertie had ever had reality shine blatantly upon him, he describing his mo. had arrived when Dobbs had been standing under the tree reasoning for Gussie to give up, he realizing his lurv had been killed. Corky was a solid gal, but brought too much liveliness to Gussie’s existence. Bertie was so happy, his delayed reaction of whoopying scared Gussie into biting his tongue, Bertie apologizing, but also explaining how the news deserved it, since Madeline was so obviously his boo, and he would sing gustily with everyone for the newlyweds upon their wedding day.

It’s by this point Bertie notices Gussie’s visible discomfort, since he was in a new mess and he wished Bertie would end the love story he imagined for him with Madeline, since he was still operating under the notion of his final letter to her having been to end things. Bertie sets him straight, Gussie still believing Bertie to be a dumb ass, but belied his nature when succeeding with this, Gussie planning to visit Madeline immediately. Bertie, in the mo. of “bien être”  = well being, reminds himself to slow down with his congratulatory whimsy, since other lovers were still pending. As he was preparing to leave for his sammie, Esmond comes in, but like a horse “curvetting”: a series of jumps on the ‘hind legs’.

After Bertie greets and invites him to sit, he’s met with a look of disbelief. Esmond can’t imagine how he’d be able to sit and after “loo loo looing” awhile Bertie mentions how much he appreciated Esmond taking over the poems, which had gone fine for him. Bertie reminds Esmond he hadn’t shared why he was in such a good mood had been due to Corky, and as he was revving up his explanation, Bertie blew his bubble in the telling a of couple times, since he could sense where Esmond was heading, he getting him back by admitting Bertie didn’t look like he’d have been a deep thinker from the time of boyhood. Regardless, Bertie states what Esmond must’ve done to impress Corky, Esmond confirming, but one small thing still being in the way, he having to stand up to his aunts to prove he wasn’t being pushed over by them.

Bertie agrees this should be done, but Esmond is peeved by this, since he doesn’t know how he’d go about it, Bertie again suggesting the answer lies with Jeeves. Esmond takes his word and goes off in search of the man, Bertie having a celebratory ciggie, due to every lover being in order, minus Catsmeat. Bertie then sees Jeeves arrive, the two catching up in regards to Gussie’s most recent London plan, Corky’s tentative engagement and Esmond requesting his assistance. Jeeves accepts, but currently was helping his Uncle Charlie serve refreshment. Esmond then returns, Bertie mentioning where Jeeves had gone and Esmond replying, they need follow, due to being late themselves. Dame Daphne appears to ask where he’d been, he for once being a smart ass in reply. she heading upstairs and he leading Bertie to the drawing room, where it wasn’t long before Uncle Charlie announced Dobbs’ arrival.

The upper class guests and homeowners had varying displays of curiosity. Dobbs announces having a couple reasons for showing up, the first having to do with speaking with Reverend Sidney about being struck by a thunderbolt, and before Sidney could respond, Dobbs is body checked by Queenie, whom had forgiven him and obviously expected her engagement ring returned. Again, varying emotions are viewed, Uncle Charlie not drawn in, but drawing out Queenie from Dobbs’ arms, he coming back to himself and scheduling a talk with the Reverend for tomorrow. Bertie remembers the other task Dobbs had come about. Dobbs asks for Wooster, which upon hearing, Esmond becomes serious with the judgement of the Justice of the Peace. Dobbs goes through his story and Jeeves pipes up when Esmond inquires where he was now, and when learning he had gone to London and Jeeves was his attendant, he states wanting to speak with him in the near future, for previously discussed reasons. In the meantime, Jeeves gives Wooster an alibi so as to sully Dobbs’ story, also disappointing Esmond.

Then, Dobbs realizes Catsmeat was the only leftover culprit, which surprises everyone including Bertie, since he couldn’t believe Jeeves would overlook screwing Catsmeat over. Esmond calls for Meadowes to be brought, Jeeves obliging. Once presented, they catch him up to his predicament, and Gertrude overcome with the prospect of missing Catsmeat for 30 days, the two embrace and kiss with passion, disturbing the aunts. Once Esmond learns from Corky Meadowes was actually her brother, Catsmeat, he lightens his mood, especially when he reveals his plans to marry Gertrude once getting back to London. Esmond quiets the “banshee”-like aunts, and after setting the two on the path to using his car, suggests Dobbs go look in on Gertrude, Corky bringing Esmond’s attention to how his Aunts had been in uproar this whole time and Dame Daphne had been disturbed enough to come see what had occurred.

The four Aunts catch her up and she asks for confirmation in a way which would intimidate Bertie, but Esmond makes like he’s shooing flies, acting the most in charge of Aunts as Santa is of reindeer. Esmond states he’d approved of Gertrude and Catsmeat’s marriage, since he’d be marrying Corky, whom was starry-eyed with acceptance and adoration of he growing a pair. Esmond goes for a stroll with her and Bertie retires to his room. Upon doing so, he finds all of the troubled lovers had been handled, he readying for sleepy-time as Jeeves appears. Bertie gives him props and learns Thos had written his mother about how well he’d been getting on, leading to her arrival and knowing Bertie was there. Jeeves already had an escape plan ready for him, but Bertie at first shows his instinctual fear, and then takes a lesson from Esmond, deciding he’ll face Aunt Agatha, with the back up of the cosher being available, he strolling out with purpose.

I continue enthusiastically!

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Year Four)

Image result for harry potter and the goblet of fire book cover

The locals of Little Hangleton have continued to refer to a particular home as “the Riddle House”, even though the family hadn’t resided there in years. With time, the house was showing its age, the older locals still sharing stories about an odd and terrible occurrence, the facts being lost with so many retelling’s, but a couple certainties remaining: it happened fifty years ago in the summer, the maid discovering the three Riddles having perished. The maid hastily goes to town and tells as many people as possible, the constabulary eventually are notified, the town curious more than empathetic, the Riddles not being well-liked. Everyone was mostly wondering whom had killed them, the townsfolk congregating to the local pub to share their thoughts, the Riddles chef coming in to update them of a Frank Bryce, the Riddle’s gardener, being brought into custody, no one believing he could have been the culprit, but the chef explaining how Frank had the means to enter the house, and the townspeople convincing themselves he could’ve done the deed.

By the next morning, in Great Hangleton, Frank was denying guilt and speaking of seeing a teenage boy the night of the deaths, the police not buying it, but after the bodies had been examined, the report stating of nothing in the norm having killed them, all three in peak health, and no evidence of Frank’s involvement, he’s released and continues living in the cottage on the grounds, staying beyond the two families who’d moved in and out fairly quickly, neither feeling comfortable staying. The most recent owner didn’t live in the house or repaired it, speculation being it was kept for “tax reasons”. Frank was still paid to tend the garden, he dealing with hoodlums vandalizing the house. One night, Frank notices lights inside the house and suspects a fire had been kindled, he going off to investigate, noting no signs of a break in, and unlocking the fairly hidden back door. Even whilst not having been inside the house for quite awhile, he still knew the layout well, he listening for movement as he climbed the stairs.

Once on the second level, he could clearly see where the light was coming from, the door slightly open, he realizing the fire had been lit in the fireplace, and a man inside was speaking of more liquid still within a bottle if the other man was still craving sustenance, the second man declining, his voice unnerving to Frank, whom then hears the first man being referred to as Wormtail, he placing a chair close to the fire. The second man asks after Nagini, Wormtail informing she’d gone exploring, the second man commanding she be milked, for the second man’s hunger to come later in the night. Wormtail inquires to the length of their stay, it being a week or more, they not moving until the Quidditch World Cup was done. Frank didn’t recognize the reference to Quidditch or the other magical world words, as the second man explained why moving would bring possible attention. Frank now figures the men he was eavesdropping on could be spies or criminals, Wormtail then offering the possibility of their plan working without Harry Potter, it getting done more efficiently, the second man seeming to consider, until relating how his health would fail without constant care, he sensing Wormtail’s reluctance to aid him other than for necessity.

Voldemort then refers to himself in the third person, and explains why Harry Potter would be waited upon, Wormtail then urgently relating his issues of having to kill someone else, but Voldemort mentioning how he wouldn’t have commanded it if he were stronger, he sharing how he was waiting on his loyal servant to arrive, Wormtail taking offense. Voldemort expands on this other person’s value out-ranking Wormtail at least in two ways, but when Wormtail reminds him of the valuable asset of the woman he’d brought to him, the latter agrees and decides to honor his deed with a task most of his worshipers would clamor for, Voldemort not revealing what it was, only of it being near the conclusion of their plan.

Meanwhile, Frank was realizing the seriousness of whom and what he was listening to, he deducing Harry Potter being in trouble if this psychopath was after him, but he staying to listen rather than follow his instinct to phone the police. He overhears not as useful information as Voldemort suspects hearing Nagini returning, Frank frozen upon seeing the large snake and being trapped by either moving into the occupied room or being murdered by the reptile. Fortunately, the snake passes him without acknowledging his presence, he sensing Voldemort was speaking to the snake, and afterward informing Wormtail of the elderly Muggle standing outside the door, Wormtail opening the door wide, and Voldemort inviting him in. Frank gains courage upon learning what Voldemort had called him, attempting to have him believe he told someone his whereabouts, but Voldemort not taken in. Frank demands Voldemort face him, which Voldemort acquiesces, Wormtail turning his chair, and Frank horrified by the sight, Voldemort killing him. Two hundred miles away elsewhere, Harry awoke, startled.

Harry calms after his clear dream, his scar feeling hot, puts his glasses on and notes his scar still hurt him, he checking in the mirror and seeing no change, only pain. Then he attempts recalling the realistic dream, remembering seeing Wormtail and Voldemort, the view of the latter waking him, or possibly by the stinging of his scar. He vaguely recollects their discussion of murdering someone and he being next. He then peers out his window, and when returning to sit on his bed, is troubled by the thought of his scar hurting him when Voldemort was nearby, he not certain whether to believe this was an option. He’s momentarily startled by a snore from Dudley, talking himself out of his unreasonable suspicion.

Harry also thought about how pointless it would be confessing to the Dursleys of his stresses, he instead focusing on he being able to begin school in two weeks, and considering how Hermione would respond if he’d shared of his scar bothering him, he also musing on the idea of Dumbledore going somewhere sandy and sunny for the summer, as well as how he’d describe his situation, then wondering about Ron’s reaction, this scenario not panning out either. Which then led to thinking of when they’d invite him over and not wanting to taint it possibly unnecessarily with worry over his scar. Once realizing whom he truly should contact being Sirius, he started his letter whilst being pained with the knowledge of how close he’d come to being rid of the Dursleys. Harry had been sent two letters from Sirius thus far, his tone sounding positive and the birds sent, brightly plumaged, so once completing his reply, which included information about Dudley and his treatment from the Dursleys, he had to await Hedwig’s return from her grub-getting, he readying to go down to breakfast.

Harry enters with all 3 Dursleys already seated, he being ignored as he joins them, Petunia giving Dudley slices of grapefruit, the tension being believed to have come from Dudley’s shit report card, and the issue which was bothering them not being by his grades or bullying, but from the school nurse informing them Dudley had reached the limit of fitting into the school uniform, so now the family ate the same diet as he was assigned, Harry’s portions smaller to make Dudley feel better, but Harry having called the aid of his buddies to provide tummy fillers, Mrs. Weasley’s contributions the most ample, plus the getting of four birthday cakes didn’t hurt the cause. Vernon then goes off to answer the door, they able to hear paper tearing as he returned to command Harry follow him to the living room, he reading the letter having been sent to them about Harry staying with the Weasleys for the rest of the summer and attend the World Cup, the request coming from Molly Weasley, and Vernon not amused by how much enjoyment the postman had gotten during the delivery, the envelope fully covered in stamps with a small spot open for the Dursleys address, Harry remaining quiet for a space before asking if he could accept their invitation.

Vernon struggles visibly with giving his okay to release Harry, considering whether two extra weeks without him was worth more than Harry staying miserable. When Vernon became too close to exploding as their discussion continues, Harry waves the white flag of accepting not going, and needed to complete his letter to his dangerous godfather, Vernon’s expression changes drastically since Harry had put him snugly in a corner, he then giving permission. When Harry returns to his room ecstatically, he notes Hedwig had returned, and irritated about the mini owl zooming around them, a letter from Ron on the floor. Ron had written of a warning to Harry about his mother’s letter and how they’d been planning on retrieving him regardless of the Dursleys answer and would be coming on Sunday. He then mentions Hermione already being there and warning Harry not to say the word “Abroad” in front of Percy since he’d begun working at the Department of International Magical Cooperation. Harry writes his short reply and sends the little owl off, he then completing his letter to Sirius and Hedwig acting more calmly as if to show the mini owl’s manner was unprofessional. Harry then has a piece of cake and was content with soon leaving, his scar not bothering him anymore, Voldemort not seeming enough to get distressed over.

Harry was ready to go by noon, the Dursleys quite stressed by the knowledge of wizards coming, which annoyed them. Vernon states how the wizards better know to dress “normally”, Harry not worried too much about the Weasley kids, but Mr. and Mrs. Weasley tending to don robes, which made him concerned for them in having to listen to Vernon’s uncivility. Vernon dressed formally in order to make him seem powerful and foreboding, Dudley however, was abuzz with nerves what with his last face-to-face with a wizard had brought a piggy tail, so he tended to walk with his back to the wall. They had an untalkative lunch, Petunia seeming to hold back telling Harry off, Vernon then defensively asking whether the Weasleys planned on driving him, Harry uncertain since they hadn’t replaced their old car, he spending most of his afternoon in his room, returning downstairs when the time was closer, but the Weasleys didn’t show at five, Vernon stating of their lateness with heat, Harry even getting edgy when it was nearing half an hour past, Vernon on a tirade of wizards not able to keep appointments well or they most likely having a crap car, Harry in the hall listening whilst the family was in the living room, but then Vernon screams, Dudley rushes to the kitchen, and Harry goes in to hear some Weasleys behind the boarded up fireplace, he relating to Mr. Weasley, Fred, George, and Ron of the Dursleys having blocked the fireplace, Mr. Weasley temporarily distracted by the mention of an “eclectic” fireplace, then deciding he’d have to blast them out, Vernon being naive and ignoring Mr. Weasley’s warning to move away, he only doing so after being covered in soot and the Weasleys emerging, Mr. Weasley attempting politeness by offering to shake Vernon’s hand after identifying he and Petunia as Harry’s relatives, then apologizing for the mess and explaining how he’d gotten a contact to temporarily connect the Dursleys fireplace to the Floo network, and once getting the boys back, would repair the damage and Disapparate.

None of this makes sense to Petunia or Vernon, and as Fred and George retrieve Harry’s trunk from upstairs, Mr. Weasley compliments the Dursleys’ home, Vernon’s face coloring and Petunia biting her tongue again, neither speaking still. When Dudley enters the room once hearing the noise of the trunk coming downstairs, Dudley’s manner made Mr. Weasley think he was mentally ill, again attempting pleasant and polite conversation and still not getting a response, Harry and Ron resisting looking at the other too much for wanting to crack up. When Fred and George reenter, Mr. Weasley sets up the fireplace with a roaring fire, Fred then dropping sweets and picking them up before being first back into the fireplace, George next with Harry’s trunk, then Ron, Harry giving his parting goodbye, not getting a reply and Mr. Weasley stopping him when no one had returned his farewell, Vernon begrudgingly doing so with the threat of Mr. Weasley’s wand convincing him, and as Harry readies to go, he hears Dudley choking, his tongue one foot long, the toffee wrapper on the floor, Petunia trying to pull Dudley’s purple tongue out of his head, which she met with Dudley’s resistance, Mr. Weasley then stating of fixing him, but Petunia getting protective when Mr. Weasley raised his wand, he attempting to explain what was happening to Dudley, but even Vernon losing it and chucking a glass figure at Mr. Weasley, this being the last straw for him and then instructs Harry to leave as Vernon readied to throw another, Mr. Weasley stating he’d deal with them. Harry obeying, but also wanting to witness the madness, he viewing Mr. Weasley exploding the third item aimed at him as Petunia shrieked and Dudley lay underneath her, Harry next seeing the green flames about him.

Harry’s ride is speedy, and when he arrives at the Weasleys kitchen, Fred immediately inquires hopefully about Dudley’s eating the candy, Harry confirms this and the room erupts with laughs, Harry seeing Ron seated with two people he didn’t recognize, but sensed were Bill and Charlie, the eldest Weasleys, the two each greeting Harry with a handshake. When Mr. Weasley popped back, he’s incensed with Fred, whom denies doing anything, Mr. Weasley threatening to out his troublesome prank to Mrs. Weasley, but when she enters, Hermione and Ginny soon to follow, he keeps the prank to himself. Mrs. Weasley not letting it go, so Hermione giving Harry and Ron an out by suggesting they head to Ron’s room, Harry then asking about Weasley’ Wizard Wheezes after hearing Mrs. Weasley mention it, Ron explaining their mother had found purchase forms in George and Fred’s room, he not having known they’d come up with a list of product. Their mother was furious due to this and their O.W.L.s scores being low, Percy then makes an appearance to quiet them, Harry asking after his work and learning his report had to do with regulating cauldron thickness.

After Ron ticks him off, they hear renewed shouting from the kitchen, and when entering Ron’s room, Harry inquires why Ron’s owl was called Pig, learning Ginny had named him Pigwidgeon and Ron couldn’t change it now, so he shortened it, the little bird annoying Ron with his behavior, but Harry knowing Ron’s ways of complaining of his pets which he did truly care for. Then, to cover an unfinished question about Sirius, due to Ginny still present, Hermione notes the loud arguing had dissipated and they should return down to help Mrs. Weasley. When they see she’s alone and angry, she designates tasks to the group to prepare eating in the garden (eleven inside, beyond their capacity). After, Ron and Harry hear Mrs. Weasley rant about the trouble Fred and George would make for themselves if they weren’t careful. She then becomes more irritated when she learns she’d been cooking with one of their fake wands, Ron urging Harry outside to stay out of her warpath. They then see Crookshanks chasing a gnome in the yard, whilst Charlie and Bill were table-fighting each other, Ginny, Fred, George, Ron, and Harry getting entertained, whilst Hermione struggled between enjoyment and worry.

Percy gets them down to business when complaining of noise, and as everyone sits to eat after the loads of food was served, Harry is satisfied with filling his tummy than indulging in conversation, instead listening, Percy discussing his assignment with his father, and his thoughts of the missing Bertha Jorkins, whom was known to get herself lost, but usually resurfaced, Percy giving the Department Head a hard time for not staying on top of it, and Mr. Weasley speaking forgivingly about the situation. Percy gives a fishing line about a highly classified piece of information which no one bites, Ron informing Harry of this song and dance occurring a few times already, as Mrs. Weasley hassles Bill about his new earring and long hair, whilst Fred, George, and Charlie chatted about the World Cup. Harry asking after the current events of what he’d missed over summer. As the early evening sun set, Harry reveled in his full stomach, candle light, and Crookshanks running after hysterically laughing gnomes. Ron then takes this moment of abuzzed concealment to inquire of Sirius once more, Hermione listening intently, and Harry updating them of a possible return message whilst he was there. He then considering sharing the reason for his correspondence, but wanted to maintain the feel-goods of the evening. Then, Mrs. Weasley reminds everyone of the hour and has Harry give his school list to her so she could prepare his items along with the others, the possibility of the World Cup running over almost a week, something to consider.

Harry doesn’t feel like he’d slept much at all before being woken by Mrs. Weasley, the other boys getting ready dazedly, and when meeting Mr. Weasley downstairs, they hear of how Bill, Charlie, and Percy were sleeping in due to apparating to meet them, and when Ginny and Hermione come in, they learn they had a short ways to walk, this having to do with being inconspicuous to Muggles, Mrs. Weasley then catching George attempting to hide mischievous contraband, she uncovering the twins’ attempt at getting their Ton-Tongue Toffees out of the house after their mother had ordered them to dispose of them. The group then starts their trek, Harry learning where and why they were footing to a certain destination. When they get there and begin looking for the Portkey, Mr. Weasley hears someone he knew locate it, they being properly introduced to Cedric from Hufflepuff, Seeker and Captain for their team and his father, Harry getting a bit more attention from Cedric’s dad which was heading in an unpleasantly awkward direction, until the moment came to touch the old boot, as they all did so, Harry feeling a tug, and along with the everyone else, was transported to the place where the match would be held.

Harry’s first to stand, he viewing the moor, two annoyed-looking wizards dressed without fashion sense, like Muggles, Arthur greets one of them as he returned the Portkey, the wizard locating their camp and giving the name of the site manager, and when arriving, noting the man was the only Muggle for  quite a distance. Once they verify the tents they’d reserved, Mr. Weasley has Harry help him decipher the correct amount to pay. The man inquires about whether Arthur was from another country since there’d been others who hadn’t known the proper amount to give, he seeming fixated on the strangeness of people and outfits, a wizard appearing and casting a memory spell on him, the man releasing Arthur’s change and a map. The wizard escorts them away, letting Arthur know how inquisitive this particular Muggle had been needing a charm renewal multiple times per day, the wizard moving along to other duties. As they continued on toward their camp tent, Harry realizes why the Muggle had been suspicious, there being quite a few with unnatural additives to the outer detail of their tents.

Arthur is happy to see the location of their camp being perfectly placed on the other side of the forest where the game would be, Hermione and Harry designated to help put together the tents, Arthur getting a bit too hyperactive with the mallet, but once finished, they noting how tight the tents would be for all ten of them. When Arthur invites them in for a look, Harry is shocked the inside had expanded nicely, Arthur then giving the duty for the trio to get water, Harry experiencing the youngster wizard generation for the first time, the families with quite young children rising earlier, he also becoming aware how widespread the wizard population was. As they walked through the sea of tents, they’re called to by Seamus, whom was with his mother, and buddy, Dean, he relaying how the Ministry was upset by their shamrock decorating of the tent, the trio investigates what the Bulgarians had put on their tents after being informed by Seamus’ mother, it being pictures of Krum, the Bulgarian Seeker, whom Ron states of being a prodigy.

They reach the line to the water after this, overhearing a conversation between two wizards which gives Hermione uncontrollable snickering to the point of retreating until the wizard had gone. When they’d collected their bucketfuls, they meet a few more of their classmates and then upon reaching their own camp, they learn from Fred how Arthur was enjoying his lack of ability in lighting a match, Hermione stepping in to show him how it worked. Then, as the fire heated up enough for the water and other cooking, Arthur chatted to Harry and Hermione about all the Ministry personnel who passed their tent. When they’d begun making food, Percy, Bill, and Charlie turn up, and as they ate, Arthur greets Ludo Bagman, former Quidditch player and Percy’s boss, whom was there to see if anyone wanted to make a bet on the game, Arthur contributing a small amount, and Fred and George going all out, Percy looking on with distaste when Ludo was pleased by the fake wand and it’s quality.

After their business, Arthur asks about Jorkins’ disappearance, Bagman unbothered and claiming to not have the resources to send a search party, they then joined by Crouch, whom Percy was obviously in awe by, he acting so reverently, Fred and George strangling themselves on their tea with enjoyment. Meanwhile, Crouch spoke with Arthur about another business associate whom wanted to export carpets, Bagman getting cut off by Crouch before revealing some fact involving Hogwarts, even Arthur keeping the details to himself after Fred had asked him about it when Crouch and Bagman had left. As the sky became darker once more, magic overpowered the Ministry’s ability to stop it, Apparating being common for souvenir sellers. The trio went around collecting little trinkets, Harry getting the three of them omnioculars, then returning to camp to see Arthur had gotten himself an Irish flag, and Ginny, Charlie, and Bill had green rosettes (Harry could’ve gotten the twins some omnioculars, as well to make up for the Marauder’s Map, but maybe he’ll return the favor in some other way, hopefully), then Arthur ushers them to the field when hearing a loud gong.

The group, along with the other spectators, walk through the woods which takes twenty minutes, everyone talking excitedly, and when Harry sees the outside of the forum, knows it’s a vast space, Arthur supplying the 100,000 guests it could accommodate, he then getting the instructions to locate their box, at the top and midway from either side of the goal posts. Harry is entranced by the slowly filling-up stadium, noticing a blackboard with advertisements being written by an invisible hand, he seeing a creature seated in the row behind them after, thinking at first it was Dobby, but it turning out to be some other, female house elf, called Winky, she sharing how she knew Dobby and updating Harry with how he now insisted on being paid for his work, which she attempts to convince Harry of this being a negative quality to his freedom, putting this and other uncommon ideas into Dobby’s head. As for Winky, she’d been sent to save her master a seat, the area agitating her fear of heights, Hermione then sharing how there would be a pre-game show, of sorts with the teams mascots.

Meanwhile, as their box filled with important wizards, Percy gets up so often out of respect, it looked like his seat was hot, he looking enviously at Harry when Fudge greets him warmly. Then, unrelated master to Winky, the Malfoys walk in, Draco’s mother, Narcissa first being met. Lucius coldly asks how Arthur had gotten his seats when Fudge goes through introducing some of those present, he not hearing Lucius’ veiled insulting inquiry, but Fudge stating how Lucius’ donated contribution to a hospital had gotten he and his family in as Fudge’s guests. When they sit, Bagman bursts in to inquire if the Minister was set to begin, he then magically amplifying his voice so all could hear him, he welcoming the crowd and presenting the Bulgarian teams mascots, the veela, Harry soon understanding Arthur’s pleasured response as they filed out and danced. The creatures put them in a trance which left the boys turning on their team, Ron starting to shred his hat, but Arthur stopping him. Then Ireland’s side shoots out a shamrock whipping around and showering the place with gold coins, leprechauns within. After, the Bulgarian team is listed, each player flying out, then the Irish side, and when the referee comes out, the game starts promptly, Harry using his omnioculars to test the play-by-play feature and having the moves listed (see, Quidditch Through the Ages), but Harry misses the first goal for Ireland because of his slow motion viewing, and so is sure to watch the game through real-time, instead.

Then, with Ireland ahead thirty points and Bulgaria at ten, Krum fakes out Lynch with pretending to see the Snitch, and Lynch hits the ground, but is revived and the game goes on. Ireland pulls ahead at 130-10 under half an hour, the Bulgarians getting more nasty and soon being fouled, the veela responding to the leprechauns by dancing, and affecting the referee, whom when brought to his senses, wants to send away the veela. Two of the Bulgarian players argue with him, giving Ireland another penalty in their favor, the veela become more hostile when the leprechauns goad them, everyone distracted, including the referee when the veela set his broom tail aflame which is also when Krum gets knocked in the face with a Bludger and Lynch spots the Snitch. Krum is on his tail though, he catching it, and Ireland at first not noticing the scoreboard, they winning by ten points. Ron doesn’t get why Krum had ended the game before getting ahead, Harry supposing he must have known the Irish Chasers were better than them, the Quidditch Cup then brought to their box. The Bulgarian team then enters and shakes the Ministers hands, the Irish team being given the Cup and taking a second victory lap, Bagman then having the twins to deal, due to they wanting to settle their bet.

Arthur starts by discouraging any mention of gambling to Molly, Fred and George quite willing for their own plans for the cash. When they return to their camp, they speak of the match until Ginny passes out, Arthur having everyone turn in, he relieved he wasn’t on duty to handle the Irish’s late celebrating, and Harry fantasizing incorporating the moves he’d seen. Later, Harry’s rudely awakened by Arthur shouting for him to grab a jacket and leave the tent, yells being heard outside along with running, Harry sees a marching crowd approaching and destroying tents as they walked. When they get closer, Harry recognizes the site manager and, who he presumed was his family immobilized in mid-air above the marchers, Arthur ordering them into the woods until he came for them, he off to aid the Ministry. Ron trips whilst they hurry off, and Malfoy of course turns up to comment, he then stating how they may want to move along before Hermione was noticed, the boys having a back-and-forth of insults before Hermione finally encourages the two to move along, but Fred, George, and Ginny are nowhere in sight, along with Harry’s wand, which he realizes is missing when he checks his pockets as Ron and Hermione took their out for light.

The two then begin suggesting the possibilities of where it could be or what had happened, Harry feeling exposed without it. Winky then appears, running awkwardly, Hermione feeling badly for house-elves living conditions, Ron taking a “lazy” viewpoint until more loud noises get them going again, eventually seeing young men wizards around a trio of veela, Harry and Hermione having to lead Ron away, they walking to a more secluded part of the wood, they running into Bagman, whom hadn’t known about the mob and Disapparated. Hermione is first to notice someone approaching, the three then hearing what seemed to be a spell accompanied by a green light which turned out being the sign of Voldemort, which Hermione explains, they attempting to leave, but wizards Disapparating around them. Harry has them all duck as they’re shot at with a stupefying spell from all, Arthur shouting a halt when seeing Ron, Mr. Crouch coming at them with accusations of one of them having to be responsible for the sign, but Hermione confessing where the voice they’d heard had come, Cedric’s father going out for a look, and returning with Winky, Crouch disbelieving she could’ve been the culprit and looking around, they noting how she’d gotten a hold of a wand, Bagman returning and wondering what had gone on.

Soon, they’re inquiring Winky of her part, Harry then realizing she had his wand, and when they’d tested to see what the last spell had been used with it, they see a replication of the green skull. Diggory accuses the elf again, Arthur bringing the logic of how unrealistic the claim was, Crouch then requesting Diggory allow him to handle Winky’s punishment, she terrified through all of this, and then inconsolable when learning Crouch was planning on freeing her, Arthur then getting them out of there, he planning on expanding on all which had occurred. They run into some wizards back at camp wanting an update for what was found, but Arthur had no information to share, they getting back to the tent and finding everyone else present, they discussing Winky and the Dark Mark not having been viewed for thirteen years. The Death Eaters, supporters of Voldemort, having gotten away when the Mark had risen, Arthur ending their conversation after thoroughly discussing the possible reasons someone would want to magic the Mark, he having them try to rest before getting a Portkey back. Harry doesn’t get to sleep easily this time, wondering about the events and relation to his burning scar.

Arthur had them pack up after a nap amount of time, the group seeing the site manager on their way out, he looking stuporous and vacantly wishing them a happy Christmas. Arthur attempts to reassure the group he’d be fine, this reaction from the large forgetting they had to place on him. When they reach the Portkey area, other witches and wizards are already there to leave, as well, Arthur lucky to double up with Basil, and the gang being met by Molly when they reached the Burrow, she having read the news in the paper, relieved everyone was alright, and squeezing Fred and George in a hug for how their last meeting had ended, Arthur then leading her back to the house, and after spiking her tea, reads the half fabricated article, he feeling partially responsible, since he’d been the one heard not giving information when he’d emerged from the woods, deciding he should make an appearance at the office, Percy excited to accompany to turn in his report on cauldrons. Harry asks Molly if Hedwig had come with mail, which piqued Ron and Hermione’s interest, they excusing themselves to Ron’s room, Harry finally confessing to the two about his scar, and then explaining why he’d asked about the post, the news relieving Ron, whom offered they play Quidditch to take their minds off of everything, Harry agreeing.

Over the next week, Percy and Arthur are kept busy at the office with late hours, Percy sharing of all the Howlers they’d been getting, and after some idle chat, Arthur returning to inform how the article writer had discovered Bertha missing and this being covered in tomorrow’s paper. When Arthur mentions how lucky it was the writer hadn’t learned of Winky, Percy puts his two cents in about Winky being feckless, but innocent, Hermione speaking up about how it should be Crouch’s conduct toward elves which should be in question, Percy again defending his position, Molly finally having all go check to see if they were packed. As Ron and Harry organize there suitcases, Molly comes in with their clean robes, Harry having found all his new textbooks and allowance Molly had gotten for him, Ron asking why she’d left a lacy dress, she telling this was his dress robe, another requirement for this year, Harry’s not looking so frilly. He thinks how he would gladly give half of his savings to the family, but was certain they’d refuse, Ron currently stubborn about ever wearing his and be more willing to wear nothing, Molly giving up and asking Harry to take a picture so she could have a laugh, and after leaving, Pig choking on an owl treat, giving Ron reason to complain of all his belongings being junk.

The morning they were returning to school had a somberness in the air, Molly calling up to Arthur as Harry was coming downstairs after she’d received an important message from the Ministry to do with Muggles, and Harry unable to believe his eyes when seeing the message by Amos Diggory’s head in flames, Arthur being ordered to deal with the issue before the news reporter heard of it, someone called Mad-Eye causing some trash cans to spew refuse everywhere and jinxing other areas, fortunately, since no one had been effected, the job could be fairly easy for Arthur to aid Mad-Eye’s trouble, he hurrying off to attend to the matter, and Molly sending Diggory off with a bit of buttered toast. Arthur says his farewells, makes sure Molly would be okay taking everyone to the train, then disappears. Harry learns whom Mad-Eye Moody was, he a wizard whom used to work for the Ministry as an Auror, capturing Dark wizards and now plagued with the thought of being tracked by his enemies.

After this, Molly called a few taxis for them, Bill and Charlie coming along to see them off, the Muggle drivers having quite a time with the luggage, the trio glad to make it to the station, since Crookshanks was rattled by the fireworks in Fred’s trunk going off, Charlie hinting seeing them soon and unable to disclose more due to Percy and its classified Ministry status. Bill also mentions how he may drop by because of what was in store for the bunch, Molly hinting some rule having been amended and the kids confused by their statements, the train then leaving. As they settle in their booth and Ron wonders aloud what everyone was referring, Hermione quiets him for hearing Malfoy next door speaking of another school called Durmstrang, she sharing how wizarding schools tended to keep their location secret, but she thinking the school was in the North due to the uniforms including fur. As they travel and chat, other buddies of the three come by to greet them and talk of the World Cup, Malfoy of course dripping in, noticing the dress robe Ron had draped over Pig’s cage, and he also mentioning the secret at Hogwarts, but once discovering they didn’t know, stops speaking of it so he could make fun of how they were in the dark. Ron’s bad mood over this stuck with him through the rest of their ride, Harry greeting Hagrid once they’d arrived at the station, and the trio, with Neville board a carriage to the castle.

As they were driven closer to the door, the storm became worse, everyone rushed for the door when the carriages stopped and were glad to get out of the windy rain, but Ron was first marked with a water balloon, Peeves aiming and reloading at others. McGonagall was first to take notice and attempt to end the balloon raid, but Peeves lets loose the last of them before flying off giggling like a loon. McGonagall urges the now more soaked students to continue forward to the Great Hall where Harry was interested in finally seeing the Sorting, but also hoping it was quick for being famished, he then greeted by his most persistent fan, Colin. After learning Colin’s brother would be Sorted today, he consulted Hermione and Ron on the likelihood he could end up in Gryffindor with his big brother, Hermione informing it wasn’t a guarantee. They then realize some professors were missing from the table, including whomever would take over Defense Against the Dark Arts, whilst Ron also hoped the ceremony would be brief for hunger.

McGonagall leads the first years in, and Colin’s brother, Dennis is drenched and wrapped in Hagrid’s coat, he mouthing to Colin of having fallen in the lake, but looking positively giddy. After this, the hat is brought out and set on a stool going straight into a song of how it had come to be, Gryffindor himself being its origination. When the hat finishes, Harry notices how the song had changed, Ron supplying it was new each year and thought the hat used its twelve months to hatch up the new one. When Dennis gets in to Gryffindor, he immediately tells Colin of what happened on the lake, Colin thinking the giant squid must have pushed him out, the two quite abuzz over this, then Colin getting Dennis to notice Harry, whom attempts to ignore them and watch the rest of the Sorting. Finally, once it ended, Dumbledore gives the go ahead to begin the feast, whilst Nearly Headless Nick tells of how Peeves had almost ruined the feast due to being banned from coming tonight. When Nick mentions the use of house-elves at Hogwarts, Hermione stops eating with shock, Nick informing the house had the largest number in use in Britain, Hermione ending her meal in the middle of the first course.

After meals were through, Dumbledore makes his speech, which included the canceling of Quidditch for something he couldn’t mention for being interrupted by a heavily-scarred man, his one blue eye moving independently from the other, Dumbledore speaking to the man quietly, then introducing him as he sat and begun to eat, this being Professor Moody, the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, the usual applauding response only taken up by Hagrid and he, everyone else distracted by Moody’s manner. Harry then mentions to Ron of recognizing the name since Arthur had gone to help him earlier, he also noting Moody’s wooden leg. Dumbledore then gets back on track by announcing the school hosting the Triwizard Tournament which consisted of the best wizards from Durmstrang, Beauxbatons, and Hogwarts to test their skills with magical competitions, but had been stopped due to the death toll during the tourneys in the past, two departments deciding to revive it with rules to keep students safe, he then sharing the glory and prize money bestowed upon the victor. As the students mulled this over eagerly, Dumbledore dashes some of their hopes with the age restriction excluding all under seventeen, he also relating how the other school champs would be joining them for much of the semester, and to be hospitable to their foreign guests, then sending them all to bed. Fred and George debate how to get through since their birthday wasn’t until six months after the tourney was over, asking Harry if he’d want to join if they figured a way around the age cap, Neville even considering, what with his gran making him feel like a failure to his family. Ron mentions of possibly going in on it as well, before they went to sleep, Harry imagining getting in and winning Cho’s favor.

The next morning the storm had passed, the trio studying their new schedules as Fred, George, and their buddy Lee thought of ways to accomplish looking older. As Harry dreaded his double dose of Divinations today, the owls come in for deliveries, he worrying about Hedwig when she wasn’t among them, his distraction only broken with Sprout’s class and showing them what they’d be doing with a plant’s pus, afterward Gryffindor off to Hagrid’s where he would have them raise weird-looking creatures resembling lobsters without shells, Hagrid expecting the students to test out what the creature would eat as their behinds exploded periodically. When they got back to the castle for lunch, Hermione double-timed eating so she could hit the library, afterward Ron and Harry going to their Transfiguration class, Harry getting another reading of the danger he expected coming true when Trelawney comes in.

Harry debates whether her premonition was bullshit and had completely been in his own head when Ron had him come to with everyone staring, Trelawney annoyed, and Ron’s next comment having Harry sense Trelawney had given the class extra homework due to overhearing him. When they’d gotten to the doors of the Great Hall, Malfoy calls Ron out to gloat of Arthur being in the news, making fun of his parents’ picture, Harry coming to Ron’s defense by talking smack of Malfoy’s mother in return, Malfoy firing his wand at Harry, but only barely touching him, and before he could retaliate, Moody transforms Malfoy into a ferret, he then bouncing him on the floor when he attempted to flee, McGonagall finally noticing and putting a stop to it, informing him of the proper course of action for penalizing students. Malfoy was speaking under his breath of his father, and Moody responded with knowing Lucius and giving him a message for him, and also wanting to speak with Snape since he’d known him for a long time, as well, he leading Malfoy away. When they sit, Hermione again double-times her meal to get to the library as Ron ‘framed’ the special memory of ferret Malfoy. Fred, George, and Lee sit next to them and praise Moody on his class, Ron let down in learning they had to wait until Thursday.

The couple days to follow were fairly uneventful, other than Neville liquefying six cauldrons in Potions, Snape developing his retaliation options, Neville assigned a detention involving horny toads posteriors. Ron and Hermione discuss Snape’s moodiness stemming from Moody, Snape’s conduct when in range of the man being to keep his eyes off him. Harry believed Snape was intimidated, whilst Ron became glossy over the re-imagining of Malfoy’s situation as a ferret, but with Snape as a different creature. Harry and classmates were so ready for their first lesson, they had begun waiting before the bell had run for classes, Hermione not showing until right before the class began, Harry sensing her reason involving the library, the three securing seats at the front of class. When Moody arrives, he declares the books weren’t necessary, roll call an unnerving experience as his magic eye located each student as they replied.

Moody starts by sharing of their focus this year being on curses, he confessing he, like the other professors, would only remain for a year, having signed up for the benefit of Dumbledore. He then gets straight into explaining how Dumbledore had given permission for Moody to demonstrate Dark curses, despite the norm being for the earliest year allowed grade 6, and when asking for names of the more frowned upon, Ron answers with the Imperious Curse, Moody showing on a spider he kept in a jar in his desk, it acting like it was in a circus act, the class enjoying it until he reminded them of he able to make the spider do anything he chose. Moody then inquires for another suggestion, Neville giving the answer which was the Cruciatus Curse, Neville uncomfortable for speaking out, Moody starting the curse, another spider he at first makes bigger for easier viewing, this spider contorting with obvious pain, making Hermione yell out for Moody to end it, watching Neville’s scared reaction, Moody shrinking the spider and adding it back to the jar, asking for more call outs. Hermione gets her chance, and reluctantly names “the Killing Curse”, Avada Kedavra, the last spider showing the results, and Harry unnerved, this obviously the one which had been attempted on him.

Moody goes on to explain the three curses shown were considered Unforgivable Curses and would be a one way trip for anyone caught, the rest of the lesson filled with note-taking on the three curses, and when class was done, Hermione leading the two to meet Neville in the hall, he looking traumatized, Moody approaching them all, and kindly offering Neville tea where he’d also be giving him some books to borrow, the trio watching on as Neville seemed to want them to speak on his behalf or join them, but he gets led off alone. The trio were baffled by all this, Ron then chatting about the Avada Kedavra curse until seeing the look Harry had on his face, not speaking anymore until at the Great Hall, changing the subject to beginning their predictions what with how long they’d need to finish. Hermione again rushes off after quickly eating, and as Ron and Harry return to the common room, Harry wonders whether the Ministry would reprimand Dumbledore and Moody for showing the curses to the class, Ron considering how the two usually did as they pleased regardless of rules, so if they were hassled it wouldn’t bother them.

As the boys retrieve their Divination homework, they discover Neville perusing a book Moody had lent him, it on his best subject, plants. When the two return to the common area to start, after an hour, they still hadn’t made a dent, Ron finally changing tactics to making them up, knowing they fared pretty well with this choice before. When most of Gryffindor had left for the dorms, Harry noticed Fred and George quietly working on a parchment, he thinking it could be in regards to the Triwizard Tourney, then hearing George state under his breath, but not enough, which made it seem they would be attempting to talk someone into something, George becoming aware of Harry noticing and the two withdrawing soon after. Hermione comes in a few minutes later sharing how she’d finished her project and wanted them to join her cause called, S.P.E.W., she designating them secretary and treasurer, no one saying a word, what with the baffling news she’d made a club to campaign for the well being of elves. The topic is waylaid by Hedwig’s returning with a reply, but Harry reacting badly since Sirius was on the move, presumably to be near enough to aid him, Harry feeling angry guilt, he going to bed and thinking about how he’d messed up.

 Harry was conscious, early in the morning, of having organized a complete plan overnight, he implementing the first step by writing to Sirius of he having made up his scar bothering him, so he could cancel his trip to Hogwarts, he then going to the owlery and coaxing Hedwig to deliver it, Hermione stating her disapproval over breakfast, Ron convincing her to leave it alone, Harry’s mind already preoccupied and his nerves not any less eased. The usual outlet for Harry’s issues, Quidditch, not being available, was partially replaced by the intensity of classes, Defense Against the Dark Arts taking a turn, what with Moody planning on putting each student under the Imperious Curse, Dumbledore having agreed the students should know how it felt, Hermione speaking up about it being against the law, and Moody excusing her, but she embarrassedly back-pedaling. Harry eventually got his turn, and was almost able to resist, Moody impressed with his strength, planning a second demonstration with him, and not stopping until Harry had been able to throw the curse off.

When class ended and Transfiguration had added to their already bulky amount of assignments, McGonagall reveals it was because their O.W.L.s, whilst not this year, would be coming soon enough, and they needed much more practice if they planned on passing. Harry and Ron had gotten exemplary grades for their homework, but now would have to rack their brains for more, their new task being to list a month’s worth. Their other professor’s assigned similarly cumbersome assignments. After Hagrid’s class let out, Malfoy getting put in his place when Hagrid had told them they’d be coming to see their pet projects on assigned nights, the trio pleased with how Hagrid had handled the brat, Ron and crew noticed a sign regarding the Triwizard Tourney and their classes ending early with the new students’ arrival. This happening in a week kept it a hot topic of conversation, everyone, including teachers on edge over their guests impending visit.

The morning of the new students being expected, the Great Hall was thoroughly decorated (now elves entering my mind whenever menial tasks are mentioned), the trio invading Fred and George’s quiet chat to talk of the Triwizard Tourney, Hermione offering some insight into who would be on the panel of judges due to reading about the history, Ron first to throw her off by having her rant about house-elves, she staying vigilant to her cause, harassing fellow Gryffindors in the common room for donations and memberships. As Ron and Fred ignored her, George reveals how he and Fred had been to the kitchens, and the elves were massively content, Hermione pushing this off of they not being aware of their basic rights, Harry noticing Hedwig had returned, Sirius not having bought his lie, he now hiding in the country and to keep him updated by using different owls. The trio get ready to meet the other students along with the rest of the school, after Potions class, they debating how they’d travel there, Dumbledore first to spot the Beauxbatons flying in first on a giant winged-horse drawn carriage, a large lady the size of Hagrid stepping down, Dumbledore leading the students with applause, her students following, quite cold due to only wearing silk robes, their headmistress leading them indoors. Minutes later the headmaster of Durmstrang had arrived by ship, popping out of the lake, again Dumbledore is greeted kindly, Ron then stating the obvious when Krum steps forward.

Ron is still in awe of Krum being at Hogwarts, having forgotten he was still a student, but he not being the only starstruck kid, girls scrambling for anything to write with for an autograph. The trio get to their table, watching as Beauxbatons sat with Hufflepuffs and still acting chilled which exasperated Hermione, whilst Krum along with fellow Durmstrang students sat at Slytherins table, Malfoy chatting Krum up and agitating Ron. Meanwhile, four seats at the Professors table were being added, Harry wondering who else was expected. When the rest of the students and teachers had entered, Dumbledore made a speech, welcoming them and announcing the tourney opening upon the feast’s end.

When the meal appears, the options are more plentiful, some obviously to the comfort of their guests. Ron is rendered temporarily incomprehensible when a Beauxbatons girl came to inquire if they wanted their French dish, he certain she was a veela, and whilst they ogled, Hermione states the two extra seats at the Professors table had been taken, Crouch and Bagman now present, and when dessert was served, again with a few extra choices, and finished, Dumbledore makes a second speech, introducing the two as judges and organizers, he then calling forward for the bejeweled box, he explaining how Crouch and Bagman had already picked out the students’ tasks which would be implemented throughout the year, the choice for champions being chosen by the Goblet of Fire, which was inside the box. He then describes the time-frame and where it could be located for students to apply, and those not within age range, wouldn’t be able to approach for a spell, after this dismissing the students for curfew.

Fred and George discuss it being possible to hack, and as Harry debates whether he’d join them in attempting to age himself, the trio leaves at the same time as the headmaster of Durmstrang was walking for the Hall exit, Harry allowing the headmaster to pass first, he not at first recognizing him, but has a double-take, having the same reaction as usual. Moody gets him to move along after the headmaster places him as well, with intimidation and distaste, he having blocked the doorway and moving along when Moody brings this to his attention. The next morning, the three wake early, seeing the crowd around the Goblet, Fred, George, and Lee soon turning up to confide having taken their aging potion and about to test it, Fred going first, and when seeing nothing happen, George rushing in after him, but the two then being flung out, their beards sprouting upon landing, everyone including them cracking up. Dumbledore makes himself known and states of they not being the first to attempt this, complimenting their beards and sending them to the Infirmary. When the three get to the Great Hall, they join Seamus and Dean who were discussing possible entrants from Hogwarts, not impressed with the choices, until a Gryffindor girl whom played Quidditch announces to then she’d entered.

After breakfast, Harry suggests they visit Hagrid, Hermione excitedly remembering she hadn’t offered him a S.P.E.W. membership yet, having the boys wait whilst she retrieved her badge box, and after getting to his hut, they see him sporting quite an unaccustomed style, he making tea for them all. Hagrid was also looking forward to the games, he almost revealing the first task, then only stating it’d be fantastic. They spend lunch with him as well, discussing different possibilities for what the tasks could be and which students would be chosen as champions. Hermione didn’t have luck getting Hagrid to join her cause, he explaining the nature of elves and how it wouldn’t help them. When evening set, they readied to join the Halloween feast and hear the choosing of champions, Hagrid tagging along, but when the trio smell his cologne, he quickly washing off, the headmistress of the Beauxbatons along with students, heading to the castle, Hagrid intercepting and then walking with her, leaving them behind, they now understanding why he’d gussied up so oddly. When the feast had started, no one seemed as interested, many anxious to have the drawing begin, and when the time finally came, Dumbledore gives instruction to those who were chosen having to go to another room when their name was called. The first name on parchment was then blown out of the Goblet, Krum first, then the veela-looking girl, Fleur Delacour, lastly Cedric is called, and as he joins the others, Dumbledore is speaking of supporting their champions when another parchment flies out, he calling Harry’s name.

Harry is dumbstruck, unmoving, and disbelieving what he’d heard, no one reacting happily, voices sounding mad gathering in volume. McGonagall speaks with Dumbledore quickly in undertone, Harry finally stating to his shocked table of not having put his name in, but Dumbledore again calls him up, directing him to go through to the next room, none of the adults looking pleased, either. When he’d joined the other champions, he found them standing near a fireplace with witches and wizard portraits surrounding the room, soon all the teachers following Bagman inside, he breaking the news of Harry competing. Soon the professors are discussing how Hogwarts now had two champions being unfair, Dumbledore asking Harry if he’d entered or had gotten an older student to do so for him, Harry denying he’d applied, most everyone not taking his word, and after getting Bagman and Crouch’s opinion, they following the rule book, Harry was meant to compete with the others.

When Karkaroff insists the other school and he were owed one extra champion, Bagman explains the Goblet wouldn’t reignite again until the next tourney. Moody finally makes himself known when Karkaroff threatens to leave, reminding him the magic contract made his suggestion impossible to carry out, then supposing whomever had entered Harry’s name, may have been betting on he not surviving, the two visiting schools not convinced by Moody’s theory of someone most likely having entered Harry’s name under a different school so he’d be chosen regardless, along with a powerful charm to make certain it would work. Once they were out of arguments though, and no one had any acceptable other choices to offer, Crouch, whom looked sick, came closer to deliver their first task, it being about gauging their courage, he stating the date it would happen, and the champions being excused from their tests concluding the year.

Dumbledore then invites Crouch for a drink before he insists on going back to the Ministry, Dumbledore nor Bagman successful in convincing him to stay. The two heads of houses leave with their students first, Harry and Cedric being told to rejoin their houses, Cedric also not believing when Harry insisted he hadn’t entered, granted more lightheartedly than Harry had been experiencing thus far, and when they separate, Harry considers if whomever had added his name was truly attempting to get him killed, how Voldemort could’ve done this whilst being in hiding and waning strength. When Harry gets to the common room, everyone is celebrating and excited, Fred and George first to give props and jealous Harry had succeeded, Ron and Hermione nowhere to be seen in the room, and no one allowing him to retreat upstairs until he insisted after half an hour. When he locates Ron in their room on his bed, Harry realizes he was holding a grudge against him not confiding of entering, making him mad his best friend didn’t even believe him.

Harry had a sense of foreboding upon waking, forgetting temporarily why this could be, then realizing he’d wanted to convince Ron of his innocence, but having missed him, already at breakfast, Harry still getting applause from those in the common area when he came down, and since not wanting the scene he’d get in the Great Hall, but choosing to go there over dealing with the Creevey brothers, heads out, and Hermione waiting right outside the portrait hole. She got them both some toast and offers some whilst they chat, Harry agreeing, the two going outside and Hermione letting him know she had deduced he hadn’t entered, she explaining why Ron was taking this so hard, Harry needing to speak with him, but also having to write Sirius, she convincing him it was best. When Hedwig comes after Harry finishes writing, he having done so in the owlery, he has to tell her he can’t use her, she reacting angrily and Harry affected once more by how those close to him didn’t understand his side. Classes with th other Houses proved difficult, everyone certain Harry had gotten himself in, Hufflepuff ignoring him, and Malfoy having his usual fun, up until Hagrid busied them all with walking the skrewts by leash. Harry then gets called over as everyone else reluctantly goes through with their task, Hagrid stating who he also believed Harry had been set up, this somewhat of a comfort.

The next days to come topped Harry’s second worst during his second year when he was accused of being behind the assaults on other kids, but he at least having Ron’s support back then. Harry resigns himself to Ron taking the situation out on him, but it definitely being isolating. Double Potions wasn’t making life any easier, especially after getting extra homework in Charms, Slytherin youth showing off their pins in support of Cedric and the hidden message of Harry sucking, an hour and a half of this not a happy prospect, and when Malfoy insults Hermione in the process, Harry loses it, grabs his want, and the two set off spells at the same time, Malfoy’s hitting Hermione and Harry’s hitting Goyle, and when Snape shows up, he sends Goyle to the Infirmary and states of seeing no change in Hermione, her teeth having gotten larger, she leaving quickly, even more upset. Snape then takes fifty points from Gryffindor and gives Harry and Ron detention. Harry sits and Ron joins Seamus and Dean, Colin saving Harry when informing Snape he was sent for by Bagman, all champions being called, Snape not at all pleased, but dismissing him.

When he’d arrived at the room, there was a camera, but Bagman relays of this being the wand weighing ceremony, Rita Skeeter, the journalist for the Daily Prophet also in attendance, she taking a moment with Harry alone in a broom cupboard, she setting up her magic quill to embellish anything spoken, she firing off questions and ignoring his response of not entering, Harry looking at the quill as it wrote of him crying when she’d asked about his parents, he raising his voice in protest, Dumbledore then opening the door to have Harry return to the others for the ceremony being ready to begin. Ollivander is present to test the wands, Fleur first, Harry learning she was part veela, and wanting to inform Ron of being correct, but remembering he wasn’t on speaking terms with him, then Cedric is up, Ollivander having made his wand, Krum after, Ollivander not particularly commending the wand-maker’s work, but passing it, and then Harry’s turn arrives. He hopes Ollivander doesn’t mention the relation to Voldemort’s wand (Rowling providing a semi –no pun intended– joke of the quill exploding “with excitement”), Ollivander not saying a word of this, but lingering longest with the wand, then pictures being taken, Harry going to the Great Hall afterward to eat alone, Hermione not present. When returning to the dorms, Ron informs him of an owl having come and when their detention was, quickly exiting. Harry wants to stop him, but instead reads the letter, Sirius wanting to meet on November 22, and to give reply quickly, otherwise trusting Dumbledore and Moody to help with Harry’s situation.

Harry held on by his nails during the next two weeks before the time he’d see Sirius, this the only way he’d been able to cope the hellish days. The first task’s possible magnitude also filled him with nerves due to the waiting, even Quidditch matches hadn’t affected him this way, he feeling the task could be the end of him. He wasn’t relying on Sirius to rid him of anxiety, but the support would help. Harry sends his reply of where he’d wait for him, he and Hermione making certain the spot would be empty for the night planned, even having a back-up idea which would get them in trouble with Filch, but would leave Harry isolated. What was worse came in the form of Rita Skeeter’s piece, she focusing on Harry, the other champions, except Cedric, barely getting mention, and their names not even spelled correctly. Harry was incapable of thinking about the article without being physically ill, Skeeter even stating Harry and Hermione were an item due to speaking with Colin. Harry wasn’t spared after everyone had read the paper, his patience run into the ground for all the heckling he suffered. Harry also had wrongly thought his and Ron’s detention together would bond them back, but it was the same day the article had been printed, so the idea went bust. Hermione attempted to get both boys speaking to each other, but they wouldn’t agree.

On Saturday, three days before the first task, the third years were allowed to go to Hogsmeade, Hermione suggesting they go, but Harry declining to accompany her without his Invisible Cloak when she mentions meeting Ron. Upon getting to town, Hermione tries to convince him to de-cloak, he pointing out, verbally, Rita Skeeter plus photographer were walking away from the Three Broomsticks, Hermione deciding they should go in, Harry grabbing a table and seeing Ron with the twins and Lee. When Hermione returns with drinks and reading material involving S.P.E.W. and whether she wanted to see if villagers would be interested in joining, Harry considers how his life would be so much more tolerable if he wasn’t a champion. Hermione then spots Hagrid with Moody, the two speaking and the latter drinking from his own flask, too paranoid of wizards poisoning his drink to use public mugs. When the two were on their way out, Harry forgets he’s invisible for a moment and waves at Hagrid, Moody stopping their progress, saying something, and they then bee-lining for his and Hermione’s table, Hagrid greeting Hermione at shouting level, Moody leaning over the table and commending Harry on his cloak, his wandering magic eye able to see through it, Hagrid also leaning over to inform Harry to meet him at 12 A.M., then bidding Hermione farewell, both leaving.

Harry and Hermione discuss what Hagrid could want to meet so late for, she debating whether Harry shouldn’t send a note of declining since his going could affect his set time with Sirius, but Harry was too curious, planning to see them both. Harry gets ready by wearing his cloak at 11:30 P.M., Hermione and he setting it up so he could get out as she opens the portrait hole for herself, Harry meeting Hagrid, whom was dressed up a bit and shares he’d planned on showing Harry something outside, Harry attempting to relay his tight schedule, and Hagrid too excited to notice, he stopping them at Madame Maxime’s door, she also wondering what the surprise was. Hagrid has her vow to tell no one, since she wasn’t supposed to be aware, he leading them out of view of the castle, Harry then hearing shouts, and a terrible roar, seeing dragons in a pen, the wizards struggling to control them. When they stupefy them, Hagrid walks them closer, Harry seeing Charlie, whom approaches and chats with Hagrid about the breeds and which one was most dangerous, but when it turns to Molly’s reaction to the article on Harry, he moves off, not wanting to hear about it, running and slamming straight into Karkaroff, he moving toward the dragons were when seeing nothing of what had hit him.

Harry reaches the castle thinking of how Cedric was now the only champion in the dark about the first task, he getting to the common area in time to see Sirius’ head pop out from the fireplace, Harry hardly recognizing him, since he’d cleaned himself up and gained some weight. Harry asks after him, but Sirius turns the question on him (Sirius serious, tsk Rowling for going with such a typical phrase), Harry letting out all his troubles. Sirius then confides he was using a fireplace without the permission of the owner, warning Harry of Karkaroff having been a Death Eater, had been in Azkaban, released for tattling on others, and had probably put Harry’s name in the Goblet, which was why Moody had been called for and threatened before starting at Hogwarts. Sirius then mentions the missing witch Bertha Jorkins having been in Albania last, the same perceived area Voldemort was hiding. Sirius reveals he’d been attending Hogwarts the same time as Bertha, she a moron and easily led into harms way. Besides this though, Sirius believed Harry being in the tourney would make his death seem more accidental, he then about to advise how to handle the dragons when Harry heard footsteps and had Sirius disappear, annoyed to see it was Ron, asking who he was speaking with, and then leaving when Harry asks him why he was up, but Harry’s comment of Ron not helping his wanting to butt in eliciting a response which Harry seethed over, and then throws one of the “Potter Really Sucks” badges at his head and states of if he was fortunate he’d get a scar, like his, Ron not coming back upstairs whilst Harry was aware.

On Sunday, Harry is quite distracted, discovering Hermione in the Great Hall with Ginny, he waiting until she’d finished breakfast before taking a walk and confiding all he’d learned the night before. Hermione has them focus on the dragon issue before Karkaroff, and when thinking of a proper spell to use, the two going to the library for ideas. They still didn’t uncover the right sort of information, though and Harry didn’t sleep well. What ends up helping his nerves is knowing he’d still prefer Hogwarts despite facing a dragon over staying with Dudley. Harry then decides to speak with Cedric as the bell was about to ring, he charming his bag so he could chat with him on his own, he interrupting Cedric as he spoke of his new torn bag and confiding what their first task was, Cedric suspicious of his motives, but they then being joined by Moody, whom has Harry come to his office, regardless of his current class in Herbology having begun. Harry notes the differences of the office from each previous professor, Moody’s including objects from what Harry believed was from his Auror days, all about the office, Moody explaining a few before getting to how he commended Harry on revealing the task to Cedric and not following the rules being a tradition of the tourney.

Moody then gives Harry advice, the first of which being to rely on his talents, the second being a spell to retrieve any item he may require, Harry then getting to class where he asks Hermione to teach him a Summoning Charm, they dedicating their lunch time to it, Harry not happy to stop for his Divination class, Ron almost laughing at an outburst from Harry in regard to another of Trelawney’s hints to Harry’s death, he practicing the charm in class. After a short dinner, they continue his practice until Peeves turns up at midnight, the two returning to an empty common area. By two a.m., Harry had started to improve, he worrying about the distance he’d be summoning from, but Hermione certain it wouldn’t matter as long as he maintained concentration. His nerves abated temporarily until morning came, classes ending early so they could attend the task, the day having a clipped affect as Harry dazedly attended classes until McGonagall informed him it was time to go prepare for the task. She wishes him luck and leaves him at the tent which had been erected, Bagman greeting him and instructing them all of how they would choose the type of task they’d face, they attempting to retrieve a gold egg, Bagman then having Fleur draw first, Harry last and getting the doubly dangerous one, Cedric being first to carry out the task and succeeding.

Bagman’s commentary doesn’t ease Harry’s nerves, and when Krum has his turn and seems to succeed the quickest, Harry goes out when hearing the whistle, and hoping his charm worked which fortunately, it does, Harry’s fear subsiding with the ground, he dodging the dragon and getting grazed by its tail, but securing the egg with the quickest time. McGonagall, Moody, and Hagrid waving him over happily, giving him their approval, he then sent to Pomfrey for medical aid, Hermione and Ron coming in as Harry was exiting, Ron finally allowing Harry’d been set up, Harry stopping him before he apologized, and Hermione getting weepy, hugging the two and running off. They walk out to see his score, Ron detailing how the other’s had passed, Harry mostly getting good marks, but for Karkaroff’s low score, Charlie then informing Harry he was off to relay the news to his mother and Bagman requesting Harry meet him in the tent. Bagman informs them of the eggs eluding to what their next task would be which would occur February 24th, Ron and Harry chatting as they returned to the castle, Harry responding to Rita Skeeter when she accosted them by only bidding her farewell.

The trio go to locate Pig so Harry could update Sirius on his first task being a success, Harry taking the time to fill Ron in on Karkaroff and his past, Ron surprised at first and then relating how much sense it made, what with Malfoy’s statements regarding his father and Karkaroff’s friendship, then helping Harry attach the letter to a constantly moving Pig. Ron continues by believing the other tasks must be a breeze compared to the first, Harry’s chances of winning quite possible, Harry thinking Ron was attempting to show extra support for the time he’d been pissed at him, but happy with his words, Hermione not seeming pleased with his overt positivity. Ron then confides of the twins having put together a surprise party and should’ve had time by now to get everything set up, the three being greeted by thunderous, happy shouts, butterbeer and cake on every table, banners on the ceiling. Lee Jordan picks up the egg clue and he, along with the others began urging Harry to see what the clue was, and upon acquiescing, everyone hears a loud, terrible screeching. When Harry does as Fred requests and closes it, a few of them give their idea of what it could be, the latter then suggesting a tart to Hermione, whom nonchalantly asks how to locate the kitchens, he describing how, then wondering why she wanted to know. Hermione giving no reason. George takes a guess which elicits a laugh from most in the room, Hermione not replying, Neville then taking the attention when transforming into a bird momentarily after eating one of the twins’ appetizers, Fred sharing of the price they charged for them. After, Harry had been getting ready to sleep, he considering how Hagrid was correct in his opinion of the dragons.

The last moment of the year brought hard weather, the Beauxbatons and Durmstrang’s living quarters visibly showing how possible it was for the terrible cold to be an effect to their comfort. Hagrid kept Madame Maxime’s horses well liquored, but the students finding the stench affecting their ability to stay intent on the skrewts. Hagrid suggests in the next class, they attempt to learn if the skrewts slept through the winter, offering crates to the creatures. Ten skrewts remained, and their blood lust in taking each other out hadn’t lessened as they grew longer, the appearance of them not getting better with time, they soon learning the skrewts didn’t bed down for the winter, Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle taking refuge in Hagrid’s home whilst the others were able to capture nine out of ten with much difficulty. Harry and Ron attempt to capture the tenth with Hagrid’s supportive advice, Rita Skeeter turning up, Hagrid taking over restraining the skrewt and then inquiring whom she was.

When learning, Hagrid asks about her being told to stay off the grounds by Dumbledore, she ignoring this inquiry to speak of how interesting the skrewts were, Hagrid sharing what they were called, she replying how she hadn’t been aware of them, and what their origin was, Hermione distracting her with how fascinating they found the species, prompting Harry’s opinion, Rita noting how the kids had sustained minor injuries and many were cowering within Hagrid’s hut. Rita then spices up the deal of an interview with Hagrid about his class by mentioning a column dedicated to animals, Hagrid then all for it. Harry refrains from warning him of going through with his upcoming interview, since he didn’t have an opportunity to do so privately, the end of class then arriving. The three discuss the worst and best case scenario which could come from Hagrid speaking with Rita, and if it meant no longer dealing with the skrewts and Hagrid staying teacher, all the better.

Harry and Ron then had a much better time with double Divination, since they were good again, Trelawney the only one to suffer. So, as she’s professing the ever-lingering footsteps of death, Ron and Harry make light of it whilst her best students, Parvati and Lavender take it dreadfully seriously. Harry considers how many times he’d have lost his life according to Trelawney’s predictions. Ron and Harry then notice Hermione’s absence from her usual haunts at lunch, Ron put off from his getting an autograph from Krum in the library when noticing a bunch of girls deliberating the same. As they’d returned to Gryffindor tower’s common area, Hermione overtaking them, she insisting Harry follow her, and when Ron showed interest, Harry agrees, the Fat Lady annoyed they’d bothered her for nothing. As Hermione led them past a particular painting, Harry figured out what she was so pleased about, pointing out the painting to Ron, he thinking Hermione was on to “spew” affairs again, she insisting otherwise and desperate to get Harry to come see for himself. When Hermione had managed to strong arm him through the passageway, it wasn’t long before an elf tackled his middle with a hug. Harry recognizes Dobby with surprise, the elf overjoyed and Harry noting the odd assortment of clothing he wore, including his sock which had set him free, among his new outfit.

Harry learns Dobby and Winky had both been hired, the former leading Harry past each table of food was sent up. Dobby leads them to Winky, whom becomes quite distraught when Harry greets her, Hermione pleading with her to calm down, Dobby so happy he offers Harry tea, and upon accepting, six elves brought tea accompanying biscuits, hastily, Ron stating his being pleased with their quickness. Dobby then explains how long he’d been there and the hardship of being an unemployed elf, Winky getting louder with anguish. Dobby continues about how no wizard was willing to employ an elf wanting payment, Winky crying harder as Hermione announced her support, Dobby continuing his story over her ever-increasing wails, getting to how the two could secure work at Hogwarts. Dobby then proudly states how he was getting paid and even got time off, Hermione not happy with the terms he’d accepted, but Dobby revealing of having turned down higher pay and more time off.

Hermione then asks if Winky had gotten paid, the elf ceasing her terrible cries to state how she hadn’t gotten quite so desperate, Hermione attempting to note the brighter side of Winky being correct with how she’d been acting with Crouch, Winky unwilling to accept her negative words and insisting he’d been fine and she was terrible. Dobby confesses Winky’s issues with getting used to their new environment, and how Dumbledore was lenient on how they wished to speak of him, but Dobby assuring he thought he was wonderful, Harry then asking whether Dobby could speak of the Malfoy’s comfortably, he hesitatingly confiding they were horrible “dark wizards”. Dobby not quite used to this freedom, punishes himself with a good banging to the head until Harry stops him, Dobby grateful and sticking up for himself when Winky announces he should be feeling guilty. Winky then returns to how terribly she’d shamed the generations of her family before her to have worked for the Crouches.

Hermione then confesses how she believed he was doing fairly well, since being seen at Hogwarts, Winky surprised and then getting mad when learning Bagman was there, as well, she stating how Crouch didn’t like him at all and how shit he was, but she not revealing Crouch’s “secrets”. After this, Winky is incomprehensible, so as they drank tea, Dobby speaks of his goals, a sweater on his list of to-dos. Ron offers the one he expected from his mother, Dobby quite pleased. When the trio readied to leave, the elves offered going-away snacks, Harry and Ron taking advantage but Hermione looking uncomfortable with their subservient behavior, Harry giving permission to Dobby to visit him sometime, and as they return to the dorms, Hermione confessing how Dobby’s presence had potential as a good influence on the others, they all then moving on to how they still viewed Bagman as a better sort than Crouch, and Ron stating how Percy wouldn’t prefer the lighter spirit over seriousness if it did a jig in front of him in the buff.

McGonagall is shouting at Harry and Ron to stay focused, the class almost over, they having finished their assignments and written down their homework, but were sword fighting with two of Fred and George’s fake wands, they instantly stopping, and McGonagall making an announcement about the Yule Ball coming up and fourth years and up were allowed to go. The required uniforms are mentioned, she then detailing how the party was to encourage a more relaxed atmosphere, but making sure they were aware, she’d be looking out for improper conduct. When the bell sounded, McGonagall calls to Harry and informs him of requiring a dance partner, since the tradition had champions starting off the Ball, Harry is dumbfounded and resistant, but McGonagall makes certain he knew he didn’t have a choice. Harry despaired over whom he’d need to ask to be his partner, despairingly inquiring of Ron how he would ever be able to choose and invite a girl when none ever seemed to travel alone, the answer he received not helpful, Ron wondering if he knew someone he’d want to invite, Harry thinking of Cho, and Ron then trying to ease his mind by stating how most girls would definitely be interested, no truer words having been spoken, since the proof occurred by the next day, girls approaching Harry and asking him, fortunately most not hassling him anymore about being a champion or the news article, Hagrid also lucky not to have been covered in the paper.

Hagrid mentions how Rita hadn’t focused her questioning on the magical creatures, their last class having them in safe distance from the skrewts, now. The four discuss how Rita had been after dirt on Harry, and wasn’t satisfied with Hagrid’s praise of him, he then asking if Harry had found a date, but doesn’t push the subject when told he was still on the search. As the last week of school progressed, rumors of what was in store for the party escalated, a well-known group supposedly being hired, Dumbledore buying hundreds of mead barrels, some teachers even allowing free time during class. Others, like their ghostly history teacher, McGonagall, Moody, and Snape, keeping them well busy. Snape gave them a test to study for, Ron and Harry entertaining themselves in other interests when returning to the common area, Hermione giving them shit for it, she thinking Harry should at least be attempting to figure out the puzzle of the egg. Ron defends him though, knowing how much he deserved a rest from everything, George and Fred then walk up and ask if Ron could let them borrow Pig for a letter, but when learning he was already loose, turn to the topic of dates, Fred even showing how it was done by asking a girl whilst she was on the other side of the room, Ron realizing they should probably get to it, themselves. Hermione’s feathers get ruffled when Ron speaks of girls’ looks insensitively, leaving them early.

The Hogwarts employees go to great lengths to bedeck the place with the most fancy decorations for their foreign guests, Peeves even getting a kick out of empty armor partially singing carols and filling in with his own insulting words. Harry and Ron were feeling more pressure by still being dateless, Ron deciding Friday night would find them both with dates upon returning to the common area, Harry stressing about seeing Cho always amongst her buddies. He makes a rush job of it though, and gets her away from her entourage for a moment, learning she was already going with Cedric. When returning, he sees Ron being consoled by Ginny, he looking haunted, and confessing he’d asked Fleur, Harry making him feel a little better when informing him of her roots with the veela, Ron then sharing of Neville having asked Hermione, but she already going with someone, Ron thinking it was an excuse, but then Hermione coming in, Ginny updating her, and she ribbing Ron for his previous statements. Ron then decides to announce Hermione should go with one of them, she stating of already gotten a date, Ron refusing to believe her, pissing her off, and Ginny refusing to confide in them whom it was, so Harry does the last desperate move, and asks Parvati, Harry having her inquire if her sister, Padma would go with Ron.

Regardless of the workload given over the holidays, Harry gave this a backseat and had a blast with his classmates, the twins’ Canary Creams a popular pastime for the Gryffindors for awhile, Harry attempting to be wary of any food offered by them from then on. Hogwarts is soon chilled to freezing levels, Ron still attempting to get out of Hermione the boy whom had invited her, this time being overheard by Malfoy, snotty insult ensuing. Hermione takes care of this one by pretending Moody was behind him, Ron then bringing up how her teeth looked different, Hermione confiding when she’d gotten them shrunken by Pomfrey, she’d let her take a bit more size, then she sees Pig return. They go to the common room and Harry reads them the letter, Hermione still thinking Harry should be trying to solve the second task clue, when Sirius had mentioned he should keep on his toes, but because of the noise in the place, relented, watching he and Ron play wizard’s chess, and the next morning Harry is startled awake by Dobby, he so shocked, he’d wakened everyone else in the room, but they opting to open presents than sleep more, Dobby giving Harry a pair of different colored socks he’d made, Harry returning the sentiment with a pair of socks for Dobby, and Ron giving Dobby not only a pair of socks, but the sweater he’d promised, the elf completely overwhelmed with joy. Harry’s other presents were much more exciting to him, the bunch then going to a exquisite lunch, and the boys having a snowball fight, after which they found the Fat Lady with a buddy buzzed on liqueurs. The boys ready for the Ball, Harry meeting Parvati in the common room, she informing Ron where Padma would meet him, soon McGonagall gathering the champions together.

Harry notices Hermione with Krum after surveying the other champions dates, completely blow away by her different look. When they enter the Great Hall and go toward the professors table, Percy is where Crouch should be, he informing Harry he was now Crouch’s personal assistant, when he’d indicated to Harry to sit next to him. Percy blathers on fairly arrogantly ignorant about how he’d perceived Crouch’s troubles since the World Cup, he proud to be his support. Besides this, Harry watches how Dumbledore orders his food from the menu, he seeing Krum animatedly chatting with Hermione about the Durmstrang castle, Karkaroff cutting him off with feigned lightheartedness due to the specifications he overheard. Dumbledore relates with an amusing story about a mystery room with chamber pots everywhere, Fleur meanwhile dazzling her date, whilst Hermione corrected Krum’s pronunciation of her name. Soon after, the feast ends, tables are magicked away, the Weird Sisters come out, and Harry had to be reminded by Parvati of they needing to get ready to dance.

It goes by without too much trouble and Harry immediately locates Ron and sits, Parvati off with another boy to dance after she realizes Harry wasn’t going to dance with her anymore, Hermione joins them later and Ron gives her a hard time for coming with Krum, he piling on different possibilities why Krum would ask her, she eventually huffing off, Krum returning and asking where she was, and Ron playing dumb, Percy strolling up and giving him props for making friends with the international students, this being good tactics and strengthening relationships between countries. Percy sits with them and then notices the twins bothering Bagman for a moment, until the man spots Harry and comes over. Percy takes the opportunity to inquire whether his brothers had been annoying him, Bagman denying this and sharing how they’d been discussing marketing plans with his assistance, Percy not pleased, and when Bagman was readying to speak with Harry, Percy continues about the status of the tourney after the hiccup regarding Harry, he trapping Bagman with talk of his varying duties, Ron suggesting they escape on the pretense of drinks, they going outside to walk the rosebush paths, overhearing Snape and Karkaroff as the latter speaks of receiving troubling signs and Snape declaring he should leave then and he’d supply an excuse for him when asked, the two walking in the boys direction.

Snape uncovers students in the bushes as he passed, then demanding to know why the two were standing around, the men leaving in serious spirits after getting the general reply of walking, Ron first to voice curiosity, they then hearing a snippet of conversation from Hagrid, they having no interest busting up, Harry pointing toward Fleur, whom was also busy, but Ron deciding cover by rock reindeer a better choice, they overhearing Hagrid speak of his mother and how she’d left him after he had only been a few years old, not knowing if she was still alive. He then sharing a story about his father and how helpful Dumbledore had been after he’d died, then inquiring about her lineage, she taking offense when he presumed she was part giant (ahh! Why, Rowling? Stop hoping against hope, already!), she walking off in a rage, Hagrid moving back toward his hut. Ron is stymied by this new fact about Hagrid, he stating he’d elaborate once having returned indoors, he informing Harry giants were usually a blood-thirsty sort, most now out of Britain, Harry happy when the dance ended at midnight. Cedric calls to him before he’d gotten upstairs, he advising him how to get the egg’s secret out, he even giving him the password to the prefects bathroom, Harry suspicious and thinking up some highly unlikely reasons he’d set him up, and when getting back to the common area, Ron and Hermione were seen having an extreme shouting match, she making clear if Ron wanted to ask her to a dance, he’d better think of her first next time if it was so important to him, she exiting and Ron perplexed and still in denial, Harry not helping him, since he didn’t want to irritate him more.

The kids were having a kickback day, Hermione and Ron acting oddly nice to each other, Harry and Ron updating her on Hagrid’s genetic background, she taking it indifferently what with considering how giants were most likely in the same boat as werewolves in this case, not all of them could be terrible. Since Christmas week had passed, they now had to consider the homework they’d all put off, Harry picking up the nerves which had left him briefly. He was still stressing over the golden egg, he now periodically listening to it, and actively ignoring Cedric’s advice due to jealousy, so started classes with apprehension, their Care of Magical Creatures teacher surprising the trio, due to it being an old witch whom refused to share her reasons she’d replaced Hagrid, but Malfoy soon helping by supplying the news article as the professor and girls approached a tethered unicorn.

The article, written of course by Rita Skeeter, details Hagrid’s shortcomings as a professor, how he’d gotten the job somehow, with so many more qualified people available, and Malfoy even supplying a quote. She goes on to describe how Hagrid had been going against policy and breeding animals, as well, she then outing him as part giant, and after giving some history on giants to end with, Ron wonders aloud how Rita could have learned of this, Harry focusing on Malfoy’s quote, the urchin of course acknowledging how helpful it would be in getting Hagrid permanently replaced, and when the class ended, how Parvati was even warming to the new teacher. Hermione was about to state similarly when Harry shows her the article, he then deciding they’d go speak with him after class to make sure he knew they wanted him to return, but Hagrid didn’t see them, nor for the rest of the week, Malfoy continually rubbing it in. Then the Hogsmeade visit was coming up, Harry straight up saying to Hermione he’d figured out the egg more or less, he wanting to see if he’d locate Hagrid in town.

As the three set off, they see Krum dive into the lake, Ron surprised due to the frigid chill and commenting rather brightly about the huge squid which lived there, Hermione noting how he’d said it and speaking on Krum’s behalf of he being a good person. When Harry determines Hagrid wasn’t in any shops and also sees he hadn’t been to the Three Broomsticks, he’s disappointed he’d come at all. Hermione then detects Bagman, whom was speaking with intimidating looking goblins, she wondering if the man ever made appearances at work. When Bagman sees Harry, his countenance changes to happiness and comes over to ask after him, the requesting a moment alone, he first complimenting Harry on his success with the first task as the goblins watched them in silence at their table, Bagman then confiding how they were searching for Crouch, whom had gone missing for about two weeks, Harry then inquiring after Bertha Jorkins, which Bagman informs how little they knew of where she’d ended up after getting to her destination, he then arriving at his point which was to make sure Harry was doing okay with the hint, he giving the idea he’d help him if needed, since he knew it hadn’t been Harry’s fault he’d gotten picked.

Harry was a little suspicious and didn’t like the idea of asking, so politely declines, Bagman looking insulted, but Fred and George then turning up and offering Bagman a drink, he declining to Fred and George’s obvious let down, Bagman mirroring their look at Harry as he left the bar with the goblins tailing him. Harry goes to sit with Hermione and Ron, he stating why Bagman had spoken with him when Ron asks, Hermione surprised, and he then sharing what he’d said about the goblins and Crouch, Rita Skeeter then walking in and getting a table near them as she spoke of Bagman, Harry questioning her motives so many around could hear. Hermione backs him up, but then furiously suggests they leave, she fuming as Ron warned her to be careful when it came to Rita, but Hermione now on an angry roll, deciding to boost Hagrid to not be effected by a troll like Skeeter.

Hermione is shouting for Hagrid to open up, and when the door opens, is surprised to be confronted with a smiling Dumbledore, whom offers the group to join them, Hagrid quite a mess, and after Dumbledore supplies the tea, he puts a point on how the trio obviously still loved him, adding how he still received mail from parents who supported Hagrid fully. After Harry and Dumbledore both relate to how family members acted absurdly or like barbarians after Hagrid can’t get over how he’d be perceived because of his blood, Hermione states how they all wished he’d return, Dumbledore stating he wouldn’t accept Hagrid quitting and expected him on the start of the week, then leaving. Hagrid, still upset, attempts to turn his spirits around, sharing how his father wouldn’t have appreciated how Hagrid had been acting, then showing them a photo of an eleven-year-old Hagrid with his pop sitting atop his shoulder, he announcing how he also wouldn’t be thinking of “her” anymore with the nonsense of “big bones”. Hagrid then relates to how he and Harry had the loss of parents in common and he truly hoped Harry would be victorious, Harry lying about his progress with the hint, but the look of pure joy finally putting Harry on the idea to attempt Cedric’s advice.

Harry waited to try Cedric’s advice, Ron letting him out as he came in due to being cloaked, and when he reached the bathroom, was impressed by how nice it was. When he’d readied the enormous tub and opened the egg, the same result occurred, Moaning Myrtle startling him when suggesting he dunk the egg. He was embarrassed and annoyed, regardless of the dense bubbles, Moaning Myrtle mentions how he hadn’t been around her toilet lately, Harry realizing he hadn’t needed the privacy. She accepts his reason when mentioning having gotten an earful last time he’d been seen coming out, he then getting the egg and dunking it, memorizing the poem, he struggling to figure out the riddle as Moaning Myrtle watched, happily. When Harry finally realized what the task meant, he worried about going into the huge lake to locate merpeople especially when he wasn’t the strongest swimmer. When he worried aloud though, Moaning Myrtle becomes a bit upset, since she couldn’t breathe at all, Harry apologizing, but annoyed since he couldn’t understand her sensitivity compared with other ghosts.

She goes on to pout about how no one thought of her, even the girl whom had discovered her body, the reason she was still living at the school explained, but Harry not listening due to attempting to learn what would be taken from him. He then readies to go and half agrees he’d visit her sometime, he at least thanking her. On his way back, he notices on the Marauder’s Map, Crouch was in Snape’s office. Harry decides to snoop on him, heading for the office, but the shortcut he takes having a trick step which Harry wasn’t thinking of, slipping and dropping the egg, which falls open down the stairs, the map not going quite as far, but Harry covering himself again before Filch turns up. When the man discovers the egg, he thinks Pus had stolen it, he coming up the stairs, and Snap answering him, he distracted by someone having been in his office, and he wanting Filch to accompany him, Filch reluctant, but the two then interrupted by Moody, he seeing what was happening much more fully.

He turns his attention to Snape, inquiring about his breaking and entering, Snape blowing it off as more than likely another student being the culprit. Moody then hints whether it’d be due to improper items Snape would have hidden, he not taking kindly to the suggestion and stating how Moody would already know for having already searched, Moody revealing Dumbledore had given the OK. Snape denies how Dumbledore would do so for trusting him, Moody going on to not only agree, but mentioning how some choices don’t get forgotten, Snape clenching his own arm, and Moody offering he return to his quarters, Snape again taking offense. Then, as they had a little face off, Moody mentions the Marauder’s Map he believed at first Snape dropped, but Harry signing to him it was his, Moody working fast and magicking it into his own hands, but Snape could see through the suspicious circumstances which Harry could deduce.

Snape declares his thought being Harry related and starts up the stairs, Moody again mentioning how he’d let Dumbledore know Snape’s immediate reaction, which stops him. Snape reluctantly back-pedals and decides to return to bed and when Moody requests the egg from, Filch, the man resisting at first, wanting the evidence to prove Peeves’ guilt, but gives it up when Moody insists it was first property to a champion. When they’re alone, Moody marvels at the map, then helps Harry out of the step, Harry then revealing whom he’d seen in the office, Moody surprised. After, Harry inquires what he supposed Crouch was searching for, Crouch eventually choosing to reply in regard to how dedicated he was on hunting dark wizards. Moody ends their meeting by borrowing the Marauder’s Map and mentioning how Harry had potential as an Auror. Harry didn’t know if he liked the idea depending on the scar-amount of other Aurors (smart).

Hermione is assuming Harry is about to share with them the egg riddle, the 3 in Charms class, Neville magicking Flitwick across the room instead of a designated cushion. Harry is clarifying what his news concerned being about Moody and Snape. For a half hour Harry was able to quietly relate his story, since this class was action-filled and fun. Ron then suggests perhaps Moody thought Snape had put Harry’s name in the Goblet, Hermione not convinced, but Ron wondering why dark wizards would raid Snape’s office, otherwise. Harry next writes to Sirius of this weirdness, also worrying about the water task. Hermione and Ron are helping him come up with ideas, Hermione thinking a charm was the way to go. Harry already acting like a dunce in his belief he’d come to his cap of tolerance to library time, goes to research applicable charms.

No one could come up with anything and now his mind and eyes keep getting drawn to the lake and what could lay waiting. Two days before the task, Harry gets a letter back form Sirius requesting the next date to Hogsmeade. Harry spends the night at the library still attempting to find information which could help, Dobby waking him ten minutes before the task and Harry scrambling. Fortunately for non-thankful Harry, Dobby had learned whom had been taken for Harry to rescue and the magical food he’d need to consume to breathe underwater, he biffing off and Dobby wishing him luck, since he was late to be in the kitchens, Harry barrels past a couple students in his haste to being just in the nick, he seeing Percy sitting in for Crouch. The champs are placed along the lake and would have an hour to recover what had been stolen. Harry eats the gillyweed and wades in waiting for a change, he hearing Slytherin cat-calling and laughing from the stands. Then, pain when he tries to breathe, which upon feeling both sides of his neck, there were gills. Once submerging, he also saw his webbed hands and toes, the water not feeling as frigid, either. As he swims farther and deeper, he doesn’t come across anyone, but grindylows being the 1st to grab at him. Harry fights them off with boiling water jets from his wand and swims quickly away.

When he stops again, Moaning Myrtle scares him by asking for updates, she giggles as he makes bubbles when attempting to say her name minus the “Moaning”, she also giving him a hint in which direction he should go, he responding with a grateful-seeming thumbs up, he soon hearing a mersong, seeing a painting with the people chasing the giant squid. What he saw of the merpeople, wasn’t the usual vision of merpeople: dark green hair, grey skin, and jagged teeth. Harry was unharassed, but stared at, he swimming past their homes. Everyone stares, Harry reaching a spot like a “village square”. Harry reaches to an area where merpeople were beckoning to the champs, four people tied up to the statue with a tail. The four people were asleep with constant bubbles streaming from their mouths. Harry attempts to ask for one of the fishmen’s spears, but he is told they wouldn’t help him, Harry then attempting to forcefully take it, but only being met with resistance and a laugh. Harry, getting smart, locates a sharp rock and hacks at Ron’s bindings, they soon coming apart, he only finding resistance when he tries to save the others, merpeople explaining he could only rescue his own.

They then motion to where Cedric, with a bubble around his head, was swimming toward them. As he passes he tells Harry to leave, the other 2 coming soon, first Krum, looking like a shark-head with man legs, but as he waits for Fleur, the merpeople start collecting Ron and Fleur’s sister, but Harry has them back off by brandishing his wand. He tells them they had until, “1,2,3”, he grabbing Fleur’s sister while he could, but as he moves, he gets tired with the 2 dead weights. As he goes, he feels the change of going back to normal, fortunately also near the surface, and upon breaking out to air, Ron and Fleur’s little sister wake. They help the little girl to shore, the merpeople swimming with them and singing. Fleur is frantically looking for her sister from shore. Everyone is reunited and wrapped tightly in thick blankets, hot potions being ingested. Harry feels truly stupid for thinking any of the hostages would’ve come to harm, he seeing Dumbledore speaking with a female chief merperson. Fleur confirms how Harry and Ron had both helped in the saving of her sister, giving each a Euro-kiss, Hermione looking bent about Ron’s reaction. Then, the announcement for the point system and scores, Harry surprising both Ron and Hermione when he gets 45/50 points, tying with Cedric. They also learn the next test was June 24th and the champs would learn more a month before. Harry also decides, as he and the group of hostages and champs walked back, he was going to buy Dobby 365 pairs of socks.

Ron was madly capitalizing off of  his status as hostage, first stating the truth and then turning it into a beat down of him by many merpeople, but Hermione poked a sensitive hole in his story, so he stuck with the real one after. Harry receives a letter from Sirius by March, he specifying where they’d meet and to bring tons of food, if possible. The trio is a bit surprised Sirius would make the trip, but they also didn’t have dementors running all over. Harry’s spirits were bolstered with the news, he and the bunch going to Potions and being waylaid by Malfoy and Pansy Parkinson, she holding Witch Weekly, throwing it to Hermione, then everyone being ushered in. Hermione locates the small article titled: Harry Potter’s Heartaches. Ron gives her an, I told you so with having pissed the moronic journalist off, but also provides a good laugh for Hermione when he labels her a, “scarlet woman”, she then giving an indifferent smile at Pansy.

Unfortunately, as Hermione is wondering aloud how Rita had learnt some of her accurate information, Ron gets angry, Snape catches them, and takes 20 points from them, reading the article to the class. On top of it, upon finishing, he separates the 3, seating Harry in front of his desk. Snape speaks to him under his breath, accusing he had taken the gillyweed from his office, Harry denies it and Snape states Harry would regret it next time. Snape warns him with having a truth potion he being able to “accidentally” use it on him, so he should watch himself. Karkaroff interrupts this exchange, wanting to speak with Snape, since he’d been dodging him. He waits until class ends, Harry snooping by hiding behind his cauldron, Karkaroff showing Snape his forearm, and he breaking off the conversation to call Harry out, Karkaroff leaving and Harry quickly following, straight to tell his buddies what he’d seen. The day of Hogsmeade was a pleasant one, not as cold, and Harry had been able to scrounge a dozen chicken legs, bread, and pumpkin juice. The 3 first hit a clothing store for some socks for Dobby, they then heading for the exit to the town. Harry greets Sirius in dog form, he leading them toward the foot of the mountain, and once getting there, sees an opening and goes into a cave with Buckbeak standing around.

When Sirius changes back and begins eating the chicken, Harry questions him about his safety, Sirius motioning to some papers with strange happenings to people around Harry and he feeling he needed to stay closer. Soon, Sirius is asking about Crouch’s house elf and when Harry had lost his wand at the tourney, they also speaking of Bagman, but Sirius focused on Crouch, he revealing he’d been responsible for sending him to Azkaban without a trial. Sirius is ready to leave out the convoluted details why Crouch wasn’t a Dark Arts supporter, until Ron has him at least give them a chance, Sirius starting with how fear was felt from magical and Muggle sides, Crouch being ruthless back then, but so effective people wanted him to become the Minister of Magic, then his son gets in trouble, he a Voldemort supporter, and Crouch sends him to Azkaban. Sirius begins to get a far off look recalling when they’d brought the young man in, he ending like everyone there. Screams his first night, silent after, unless screaming whilst unconscious.

Sirius admits the boy had died a year later, his mother following. Crouch never comes to collect his son’s body, the dementors burying him outside. The public doesn’t look kindly upon this, Fudge receiving the position and Crouch going into the Department of International Magical Cooperation. Harry states how Moody mentioned Crouch’s obsession in catching Dark wizards, Sirius confirming it was manic for him. He also supports both Hermione and Ron’s opinions of Snape due to his history when they were young, he also noting if Dumbledore trusts Snape, he’d be pretty clean from having worked for Voldemort. Sirius thinks about Crouch’s possible intentions and whether he was truly ill, Ron willing to see if Percy had heard from Crouch lately, as well as news on Bertha still missing or progress. As Sirius ends their visit, he allows only written communication from them and would be happy when this tournament ended. The three get back to Hogwarts and endless hot food, wondering if Percy would be as ruthless to family as Crouch had been, Ron uncertain.

The 3 send Hedwig to deliver a letter to Percy, they then off to gift the socks to Dobby. Ron requesting some more eclairs, Hermione being pointed to where Winky was sitting and she being drunk and sad, hoping Crouch would return for her. Harry attempts to get her to spill on whether she knew anything she’d be willing to share about Crouch, she not having it and Dobby getting defensive when she declared Harry was being nosy. She passes out soon after and Hermione is defending Winky’s unhappy feelings, she roping Dobby in, but he wanting to remain out of it, the elves quickly giving them food and ushering them out, Ron fully placing blame on Hermione for making them all uncomfy with her feminist and race rights for the elves. Harry ditches the 2 with their continued tiffs through the day, he sending more of the food by owl.

The next day at breakies, Hermione receives multiple letters, she soon realizing it was hate mail regarding Harry, she getting boils from one, and Ron reading another threatening to do the same. After Hermione misses 2 classes for being tended to, Ron getting sad about being skint all the time, Hermione and Harry not sure how to lift his spirits. Hermione is having trouble moving her hands, she vengeful toward Skeeter for it. After a Defense Against the Dark Arts class, Hermione speaks with Moody, whom helps her deduce Skeeter wasn’t getting her information by Invisibility cloak, she sharing with the boys, but not expecting them to help after Ron responds whinily about they having to now wage war upon Skeeter. Harry made sure to send food to Sirius regularly and updates with no updates, yet. When Easter arrives is when the letter comes with prezzies.

Percy relates he hadn’t seen Crouch, but received handwritten letters with his instructions from him. Finally, Harry is told by McGonagall where and when to meet Bagman for their next task details When Harry and Cedric walk to the Quidditch field, they see hedges were planted all over, Bagman relating how the Cup would be in the middle and they’d use magic to break spells, the two highest pointed champs being first to enter. After, Krum speaks with Harry, leading him close to the forest so as not to get eavesdropped on, he wanting Harry to explain the type of friendship he and Hermione had, Harry surprised it wasn’t more serious. Krum requires a little convincing, but after believing him, compliments Harry on his flying skills, Harry flattered, then hearing movement in the forest, which is revealed to be Crouch, whom was acting and looking like a crazed hobo. When Harry attempts to get his attention, he sees Crouch talking at a tree, calling it “Weatherby”, then Crouch grabs at Harry’s robe desperately wanting to speak to Dumbledore.

After, Harry is let go again as Crouch continues speaking to a tree about a time when his wife and son were alive. When Harry tries to leave, Crouch catches him again, talking brokenly of Voldemort’s power becoming greater. Harry gets loose, Krum stays with Crouch and Harry runs to locate Dumbledore, he being stopped by Snape, whom wasted his time until Dumbledore appears, Harry leading him back to Crouch, but he no longer waiting and Krum unconscious. Dumbledore wands him awake, Hagrid and Moody soon joining them. Karkaroff is brought and was pissed and accuses Dumbledore of cheating, so Hagrid calms him by placing him against a tree. Dumbledore distracting him with the task of returning Harry to his tower, and Hagrid talking mad smack about “foreigners”. Harry lets him go with this, instead glad to now be sharing with Hermione and Ron what he’d been through.

Hermione deduces Crouch and Krum could’ve both been attacked or Crouch was responsible, Ron and Harry try to see if Krum not doing it made sense, it not so they going to the owlery to send a letter to Sirius. When Ron asks for another recap on the details, Harry could remember about Crouch, he gets annoyed by Snape being a time wasting nuisance. Hermione reminding them they should speak with Moody to see if he’d used the Marauder’s Map, but then Fred and George are arguing loudly on their way up to them, about whether the note they were sending was blackmail and if they felt guilty enough, this not lasting long when Ron calls them out on it, George setting an owl off with the letter in the end.

When the twins leave, the 3 discuss how serious they could be with this unknown plan, Ron confiding how his brothers were focused on quickly making cash for their joke ship business. They leave it alone until they can speak with Moody at break, upon doing so, learning the Marauder’s Map hadn’t shown where Crouch had gone, Moody focusing them on Harry training for the 3rd task with his buddies help, since Dumbledore had notified the Ministry about Crouch. The next day, they get a letter from Sirius having him swear not to stray outside after hours and to have his buddies with him, since someone was after Harry. He took it like a brat, so Hermione attempts to set him straight, he resistant to the very end, but Hermione attempting to keep him focused. Harry follows instructions accordingly for the next few days, training with his friends. Ron has gotten to his limit of being stunned by Harry, since he’d started getting an ache everywhere.

Hermione testily advises Ron to fall back onto the cushions and it wouldn’t be so bad, Ron spouting about this not being an option when stunned, he offering she try it. Hermione quickly turns the subject to Harry having gotten the hang of it enough, and they should practice a hex next time, they ending for today. In Divination, Harry falls asleep and dreams of Voldemort, he excusing himself to the hospital wing to Trelawney’s disappointment. Harry goes to find Dumbledore instead, Sirius having instructed him to do this. He guesses the password to Dumbledore’s office, Cockroach Cluster, and hears a conversation as he gets closer. Fudge, Moody, and Dumbledore discussing Bertha’s disappearance and whether Crouch not being found was due to the same reason. Moody is first to notice and mention Harry waiting to talk with Dumbledore.

Fudge attempts to push Harry back out by advising he return to class, but Harry reiterates his need to speak with Dumbledore, whom has him wait there until he returns from their grounds look-see. After a short time waiting in a chair, Harry sees a slightly open cabinet with something shining, he taking a look. What he discovers is a liquid substance in a bowl, poking it with his wand and looking inside to see a room from above. Harry gets too nosy and falls in when his nose touches the liquid and he finds himself seated on a bench next to Dumbledore, he deducing he must be in a memory. Soon, dementors enter with Karkaroff, whom looks much younger. He’d been brought to reveal information about Voldemort’s supporters, Moody, pre-magic eye, voiced his insulting opinion of Karkaroff. Crouch has him go through the names he had, only one being useful. Harry is then transported to a different memory with Rita Skeeter and Bagman, he quite fit and being charged for passing information to Voldemort supporters, Crouch getting negative feedback from those present when readying to send him to Azkaban.

This day, Bagman is let go on his popularity, a new memory beginning. Dumbledore sits with Crouch and a crying woman, four prisoners brought in, one being his son. The boy was scared out of his mind, pleading with his parents, his mother of course, unable to do anything and Crouch shouting over him, this time receiving the votes for life in Azkaban. Crouch denounces being related to the boy any longer, Dumbledore rousing Harry from this scene. Harry tries to explain and apologizes reluctantly, Dumbledore being quite understanding. Harry then relates his dream, Dumbledore confessing he’d told Sirius about the cave. Harry inquires Dumbledore’s opinion on why his scar kept bothering him, he considering it was fueled by Voldemort’s surge of anger and or proximity to Harry. He asks after Bagman’s innocence, and why he believed Snape was clean, Dumbledore dodging by saying it would stay between himself and Snape. They end with Dumbledore wishing him luck and not to mention what he’d learned of Neville’s parents.

Harry sends another letter and thoroughly discusses most of what he’d seen, Ron not convinced of Snape’s innocence and Hermione thinking of Rita Skeeter’s egotistical talk of  what she knew about Bagman, they calling it a night, since they’d have to buckle down and help Harry practice the next day. As they reach June, Harry is much more at ease with this task what with his history thus far with similar experiences. Hermione attempts to focus them back on practice when Ron sees Malfoy acting oddly outside below their window. Meanwhile, his now daily letters from Sirius supports Hermione in Harry focusing on the third task before bothering with anything else. The morning of the task brings more fluff news on Harry being crazy, Malfoy even being quoted in the article, and Hermione then coming up with a possibility which she’s off to research in the library straightaway.

McGonagall then informs Harry the champs would be meeting after breakies. She clarifies it’s so the families of the champions could be greeted, he bewildered. Cedric announces to Harry of his guests waiting, he surprised to see Bill and Mrs. Weasley. As he escorts them about the place, Mrs. Weasley mentions how Percy was being questioned about Crouch’s letters and Fudge being judge in his place. During the latter of evening meal, Dumbledore announces the start o f the task approaching, having the champs head for the Quidditch field. When everyone is seated, it’s noted they’d have patrollers along the outside of the maze for assistance when red sparks were sent into the sky, Harry and Cedric being first to enter. Not long in, the 2 separate, Harry hearing the whistle for Krum’s start, and further on Fleur’s, Harry doesn’t run into any obstacles, oddly. After turning a few times without any issue, Cedric meets up with him again, his robes scorched by a skrewt, hurrying off, Harry then confronting a boggart-dementor, and after this goes through suspicious mist.

Rightly, since it made up, down, but he only having to lift his foot to fix it. After 10 minutes, he confronts the skrewt and successfully stuns it. A little further on, Harry hears Cedric being attacked by Krum, he making a hole in the hedge and stunning Krum, they sending sparks up for him to receive aid, the 2 splitting up again and Harry coming across a sphinx next. Harry’s guess of a spider does the trick and he gets directly to the Cup without trouble. He then sees Cedric belting toward it, Harry knowing he didn’t have a chance with his longer stride, but he did warn him of a huge ass spider coming up on his side, he barely dodging. Cedric loses his wand and Harry tries a spell, it failing, as well as the next few, they getting the spider’s attention and he getting a bitten leg, until getting to a spell which works.

After, Cedric tries to give the Cup to Harry, after he’d told him to grab it already. Harry continues to be agitated by Cedric’s decision, the 2 listing how the other had helped him at different times. Harry gets down on himself when Cedric mentions trying to save all the hostages, dumbly in Harry’s opinion, the poem not meant to be take so seriously. Cedric has made up his mind, though standing by Harry, whom takes a minute to fantasize the win, but getting his moment to say, selflessly, for them both to get it together, and have it be a Hogwarts victory! Cedric acts like he couldn’t believe his luck Harry’d want to, the two walking together and grasping the Cup at the same time, being whisked somewhere. When they look about, they are nowhere near Hogwarts, Cedric not realizing the Cup was a Portkey. They be-wand themselves, the graveyard silently spooky.

Then, they notice a small man carrying a bundle in robes, and upon getting about “6” (feet under) from them, Harry’s scar killing him with pain, losing sight, a voice commanding to kill the other, and when his scar pain lightens, sees Cedric killed. Harry’s then dragged to Tom Riddle’s grave and tied to it full body so he couldn’t move his head, he recognizing Wormtail. He left him for a moment, he  seeing the bundle moving at the grave, Cedric’s body nearby and Harry’s scar piercing him as he hoped he didn’t get a look of whatever was in those robes. Wormtail comes back with a man-fitting cauldron filled with water, a snake around Harry and the gravestone for a mo.

The cauldron is lit and the bundle demands he hurry up, upon being prepared, Harry seeing a flat-faced snake-looking red baby, he being chucked into the cauldron, Wormtail fearfully cutting off a limb for this renewal ceremony, then getting to Harry, some blood drawn and it going in with the arm. A mist develops and Harry is terrified to see a skeletal man emerge, Wormtail robing him and Harry seeing Voldemort up close for the first time in years. and Voldemort was reveling in his renewed body, throwing Wormtail against the grave, laughing, Wormtail reluctantly gets the stamp on his arm turned from red to black. Harry’s mark flares a searing pain, Voldemort wondering who would come first when they felt ‘the call’ and who would be dumb enough to stay away. Voldemort then confides to Harry, the grave was his father’s and both he and Harry’s mother had their uses in the scheme.

After a short wait, wizards, the Death Eaters, were apparating to the graveyard. Voldemort goes into a speech of how he felt those present had betrayed him by not coming to his aid before and how they’d denied being a supporter to the community, instead. He tortures one Death Eater who grovels on behalf of himself and the others. After, Voldemort gives Wormtail a sparkly fake hand which worked magically. Lucius has to explain why he’d run from the call the last time, Voldemort letting him go with a warning. Crabbe and Goyle are also called out, he going through the Death Eater’s who were missing whether it be due to imprisonment, cowardess, or death. Lucius is first to ask how Voldemort had obtained his new form, he calling out Harry as the start and finish of the tale. This new form allowing him to lay hands on Harry, he getting blinding pain from barely a finger touch.

Voldemort speaks of how he’d waited uselessly for one of his Death Eaters to come find him, instead getting lucky when a Hogwarts professor happened upon his side of the forest in Albania, but Voldemort’s plan to immortalize himself through the sorcerer’s stone thwarted by this meddling kid, Harry. So, his next reprieve comes in the form of Wormtail. He tells how Wormtail had run into Bertha at an inn, he getting her to Voldemort so he could obtain facts, he breaking her beyond repair, so gets rid of her. He goes on to state this night, Harry would die, he first putting him through the “worst pain” Harry’s ever felt, then having Wormtail release him so they could fight square before Voldemort took Harry down. Wormtail quickly manages to set Harry loose what with his pretty hand, and flippantly gives Harry’s wand back, collected next to Cedric’s body, f.y.i…

Voldemort asks Harry if he’s experience with dueling, his quite brief, and mostly useless lesson those years ago. Voldemort forces Harry to bow magically, per tradition, they then starting, Voldemort cursing him again. When Voldemort’s ready to give the death blow, Harry does the disarming spell, their wands creating a gold connection and encircling the 2 after taking them to a different part of the graveyard, inexplicably. Then, phoenix song is heard, Harry keeps the connection between them open, Harry forcing liquid balls which formed along the gold strand to go back to Voldemort’s wand, once it had, all the magic he’d recently done, seemed to be getting released, like Cedric and Wormtail’s hand. All the other’s who’d died recently voice support similar to Cedric’s, Harry’s mother and father soon emerging, as well. His father instructs him what’d happen and he needing to get the Portkey. Per request, Harry takes Cedric with him as he runs for the Portkey, Death Eaters firing curses and missing, Voldemort also not getting to him in time, even though he’d gained by a single grave away.

They’re transported to the entrance to the maze, a crowd coming with Dumbledore and Harry escorted away by Moody. Harry answers Moody’s questions about what had happened Moody then confessing he’d put Harry’s name in the Goblet and also had to orchestrate many angles, as well, since Harry was too prideful in certain ways. Harry was dumbfounded by this revelation, Moody readying to kill him, but Dumbledore, Snape, and McGonagall having witnessed the last few minutes of this and saving Harry. Dumbledore then reveals, this Moody was an impostor, the 2 waiting to see if the knocked out fella would turn. He turns into Crouch’s son, Dumbledore reviving him after giving him a truth potion.

Boy Crouch confesses how his mother had, in the end saved him. She’d had Crouch help and his mother and he took poly-juice potions to have it succeed. Crouch had kept his son hidden with Invisibility cloak, Winky helping him. Bertha had gotten in the way, so Crouch had put too powerful memory charm on her and she didn’t recover. Bertha had been the one to convince Crouch to let his son go to the Quidditch Cup, the reason for the empty seat. After, Crouch had fired Winky, Voldemort having found Crouch’s son back at his home. Voldemort curses Crouch and sets up the plan with his son to be Moody’s double. When Harry meets Krum, Crouch’s son watches from the forest and underneath his invisibility cloak, stunning Krum and popping his pop, then burying the body in front of Hagrid’s hut.

Dumbledore makes sure Crouch’s son can’t escape, then has McGonagall take Harry upstairs, Dumbledore telling him Sirius was waiting for them in his office. When Sirius sees the state of Harry, he demands to be told what’d happened, Dumbledore taking the reins, Harry becoming a perch for Fawkes, then Dumbledore asking him to tell them what he’d seen, explaining it’d be easier to get it over with than wait. Dumbledore also reveals, Fawkes was the donor of he phoenix feather in his wand. From here, Dumbledore guesses the reversal which occurs because the wands weren’t performing against each other. He asks what the apparitions did upon getting out, after which he has Harry spend the night in hospital wing, Sirius welcome to stay with him. They see the Weasley’s with Hermione prompting Pomfrey for answers, Dumbledore having everyone calm down, also stating how Harry would have the dog stay with him awhile. Pomfrey sets him up with pj’s and sleep potion, he passing out promptly.

Next, Harry is woken by talk from Mrs. Weasley and how McGonagall was arguing with Fudge. When they enter the room loudly, Dumbledore soon follows, they learning Fudge had brought a dementor with him and Crouch got the fatal kiss, so he wouldn’t be tried or be able to testify why he’d done all of this. Fudge stays immovable on his skeptical opinion of what Dumbledore had learned from Harry and Crouch’s son, and the dementors being ousted from Azkaban on the chance they’d help Voldemort only making him livid. Dumbledore goes on to advise he’d also do well to make peace with the giants or Voldemort would sway them, as well. A last ditch effort to at least persuade Fudge to believe Voldemort had been reborn came from Snape when he shows his Dark mark and this being why Karkaroff biffed off. Dumbledore then readies to get Mr. Weasley’s help from those who were still on the side of reason, before Fudge had left Harry receiving the thousand galleon winnings for the Cup. Next, Dumbledore asks Sirius to transform, he having Snape and he make temporary peace, he sending both on missions, Harry being told to finish his sleeping drought, right before taking it, wanting anyone or Cedric to have gotten the prize money when Mrs. Weasley mentions it, he breaking down, Hermione then coming in with the sleeping potion.

After a moment, Harry recalls little of what occurred after, a harsh one being when he met Cedric’s parents. He offers them the prize money, but it’s declined with a daze due to mourning. No one at school bothered him about his ordeal, also since Skeeter’s article made Harry sound nuts, he was able to kick back with his buddies. Ron also relates how he’d found out from his mother from Dumbledore of Harry first starting his summer at the Dursleys, then would go to Ron’s. They visit Hagrid and he confesses of  knowing Voldemort had been priming to come back for years (yeah, ya think?) and as long as Dumbledore was there to fight, he felt safer. They learn he also would be on a mission for Dumbledore possibly with Madame Maxime and maybe in relation to Voldemort, since he refused to give detail.

At the Leaving Feast, Dumbledore decides to reveal some of the details of Cedric’s murder and then recognizes Harry’s bravery for confronting and escaping Voldemort. Some Slytherin students refused to partake in honoring Harry, though; After which, Dumbledore goes on to support everyone sticking together against Voldemort. When everyone’s going home, Fleur makes sure to bid farewell to Harry, Krum doing the same, having a private chat with Hermione whilst Ron tries to keep track of them, in the end asking for Krum’s autograph. When they’re on the train back, Hermione mentions at lunch, how Rita hadn’t been writing anything since the end of the last task due to what she’d had on her. They then learn Hermione had Rita still in beetle form in a jar, she an unregistered Animagus. Hermione lists her terms to beetley Rita and would set her free in London. Fred and George help them hex Crabbe, Goyle, and Malfoy when they come to bother the trio, Harry then offering the twins his winnings, since they wouldn’t be getting paid out by Bagman, whom was in a shit ton of debt. His only request being for them to buy Ron some dress robes and take the credit. They end with Harry resigned to his summer with the Dursleys and preparing for whatever was ahead.

A decent end, and I’ll be happy to continue to the brickiest looking Year 5 of the bunch.

Quidditch Through the Ages by Kennilworthy Whisp

Image result for quidditch through the ages book cover

The first inside page shows the students who have checked out the book from the library including Oliver Wood, Fred Weasley, Hermione, and lastly, Harry, as well as the nameless threat which would befall anyone whom damaged the book by the librarian. Praise for the book, among them Lockhart, and Whisp relating in his own words, of being a fanatic of Quidditch, having written three other Quidditch-related books, in his spare time and when not at home, following the Wigtown Wanderers. Dumbledore again providing a Foreword which relates how popular the book is at the library, then speaking of Comic Relief and the equivalence between pounds and Galleons (the exchange rate must being shit for having not changed from Fantastic Beasts, but in dollars being a difference of 100 million and Galleons still only being 34 million; weird. Another odd thing is Dumbledore is aware of Rowling, hwhaaat?…). Dumbledore continues by relating the librarian’s reaction to giving up one of her books and how to treat the text with care, jinxes a possibility to deal with if one doesn’t.

The first chapter deals with the process of coming to decide to fly upon a broomstick, Animagi having to deal with the animal’s instincts, whilst levitation not being satisfying enough. The question of why settling on broomsticks is pondered over and answered, being due to a broom an easily explained item to Muggles, but the bewitching of one wasn’t as cut and dry. Whilst the practice had been around for awhile, the comfort of the rider suffered at first, due to brooms being homemade and the spells simplified. Then, when broom-makers were utilized for services, riding became more than only transportation.

Broom sports were developed quickly upon the upgrade of brooms, some of the games no longer played or changed to those currently known; One from Sweden being the annual broom race, Shuntbumps, a sort of jousting game still popular among children, and Swivenhodge a tennis game, not particularly popular but still played in England. The last not technically mentioned originating from Queerditch Marsh and has snowballed in fanboys of the sport. First knowledge of Quidditch was gained from a witch’s journal referencing the sport in the 11th century, she disturbed whilst it was played on the other side of the marsh, annoying her, but watching them after awhile, all whilst ragging on them. Whisp considers some of the players mentioned, possibly a Scot implementing an idea from his own people’s sport. Talk died until one hundred years later by a wizard from Britain whom wrote to his cousin in Norway about his team winning. Whisp then mentions the Golden Snitch not getting added until the 13th century in an odd way.

Background of the Golden Snidgets origins are given, it currently a protected bird. Wizards used to catch them in varying ways, but commonly the Snidget would be squashed by hand, the sport not being looked down on until the middle of the next century: 1300s. Then the first game with Snidget is relayed by a witch writing to her sister, she having fouled the game up by releasing the Snidget away from the field, and being fined by the Minister of Magic at the time, but other birds were caught and killed in future games. A wizard then invents the Golden Snitch as Quidditch teams searched for a suitable flying replacement, the sport complete.

In the 1300s a wizard fully describes Quidditch as well as the best hours and locations to play. The areas chosen becoming such an issue, laws were passed to dissuade games being near towns or Muggles. Instances of breaking up teams for not going along with the rules are also detailed. The issue has since been handled due to designated stadiums now being used for tourneys.

The differences in Quidditch since the 14th century starts with the pitch, it first being oval, five hundred feet across, one hundred and eighty in width, and a two foot circle in the center. The referee sets up the balls in the center with the teams standing around him until the Quaffle is released, goal posts being baskets, but changing in 1883 to the current goal posts. The change was handled poorly by fans, but the Department of Magical Games and Sports saw the practice of basket sizes varying unfair to the players. Next, the Quaffle is shown to have been used since the beginning, but is now charmed for easier catching, as for the Bludgers having used to be rocks, some teams used metal balls. A story is then related of a Golden Snitch having invaded capture so long, the teams gave up, the Snitch still at large, and the story being unconfirmed. The role of the Keeper also had changed, they acting like the Chasers, as well as having their goalie duties. The Beaters role remained unchanged whilst the Chasers now had a new rule to follow so as to discourage bullying the Keeper, the reaction of fans being similar as before. The Seeker’s position, whilst sought after, is also marked for being the most injury-filled, their talent also leaving them as targets. Rules of the game are listed, as well as seven hundred fouls, all of which had been called at the first World Cup in 1473. Referees are lastly listed where it describes how dangerous the position was until security got tighter on broom tampering, it also mentioning the extensive training to be passed only by the Department of Magical Games and Sports.

Next is a list of teams including Britain and Ireland, which before showing, is told of a certain amount of games being allowed by professionals to participate in, and rules for amateurs to obey. Back in the late 1600s, if a team wasn’t invited to join the League, they were requested to break up. The thirteen teams deemed the most talented compete every year for the League Cup. The list is shown alphabetically as follows: Appleby Arrows, Ballycastle Bats being the second team to most having won the Cup, Carephilly Catapults, Chudley Cannons being underdogs for quite awhile now, Falmouth Falcons, Holyhead Harpies being one of the oldest teams playing, Kenmare Kestrels, Montrose Magpies being the record holders for wins, Pride of Portree (the Prides), Puddlemere United being the oldest team founded, which was 1163, Tutshill Tornados holding the most wins back to back, it being five, as well as their Seeker’s record of fastest Snitch catching at three and a half seconds, Wigtown Wanderers, and Wimbourne Wasps, concluding.

It’s told how Ireland seemed to have excelled and played the game the longest, 1385 having been the year where written confirmation of a game having been played is shared. By the 15th century, Norway, then France learned of the game, and then in 1473 the first World Cup is played, the reasons other nations not joining speculated upon. It was also shown to have the most violent game witnessed between Transylvania and Flanders. From the first World cup, they continued every four years, in the 17th century, other nations began joining and then in 1652 the European Cup was initialized and games were held every three years. Then, the most favored European teams are mentioned. New Zealand first witnesses Quidditch in the 17th century when European herbologists were seen playing the game, whilst Australia catches on a century later, but became masters of the sport in their own right. Africa also became talented contenders, not only in the All-Africa Cup, but the Quidditch World Cup, as well.

North America knew Quidditch in the 17th century, but due to the high-profile knowledge wizards were dealing with due to Muggles at the time, the blossoming of the game was quashed at first. Canada later on became quite a spectacle in regards to a couple of their home teams. The U.S., meanwhile had a game called Quodpot which was founded in the 18th century and distracted focus from churning out some decent Quidditch teams. Quod fails to be as entertaining as Quidditch, though despite having gotten minor popularity in Europe, as well. The U.S. caught up eventually, two teams having been internationally ranked: one from Massachusetts, and the other from Texas. South America also became Quodpot lovers more than Quidditch, but Peru became experts in Quidditch, recently. Asia is the least interested in Quidditch, what with flying carpets taking precedent, some popularity only popping up on the streets. Japan though, has shown increased interest in the last century and even began participating in the World Cup.

To make broom riding easier, a Cushioning Charm was developed in 1820, the next issue being the hand-made brooms, most of which were nicely designed, but didn’t have the agility desired. Twenty two years after the first broom to gain popularity was made, the second was produced, but like the first, only one person had been making them, and so wasn’t easily accessible, until twenty five years after, a trio of brothers mass producing their style of broom which blew up among Quidditch players, everyone riding one. Then only three years later, the competition stepped up, improving the braking capabilities. By 1940, more companies joined the ranks of better quality brooms, and in 1967 the Nimbus company was born, breaking all barriers for being the best.

The last chapter contains certain moves invented by players, like the Sloth Grip Roll, where one dangles upside down off their broom to avoid a Bludger. The book ends with the fantasy of the first witch to have seen Quidditch, would’ve been impressed with the developed game and would enjoy watching the most recent developments of the game, as well as the hope of continuing to better the game through the years so future wizards and witches can be entertained.

Not a bad side-story, but Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander was better. The book is so easily read though, it doesn’t affect being able to move forward to the rest of the series upon finishing. To the next!