After half an hour or so, Hermione, growing tired of the endless Quidditch talk, buried herself once more in The Standard Book of Spells, Grade 4, and started trying to learn a Summoning Charm. Neville listened jealously to the others’ conversation as they relived the Cup match. It sounded amazing though. Behind him stood Crabbe and Goyle, his enormous, thuggish cronies, both of whom appeared to have grown at least a foot during the summer. Evidently they had overheard the conversation through the compartment door, which Dean and Seamus had left ajar. A sleeve of Ron’s dress robes was dangling from it, swaying with the motion of the train, the moldy lace cuff very obvious.
Ron made to stuff the robes out of sight, but Malfoy was too quick for him; he seized the sleeve and pulled. I mean—they were very fashionable in about eighteen ninety…” “Eat dung, Malfoy! Malfoy howled with derisive laughter; Crabbe and Goyle guffawed stupidly. Going to try and bring a bit of glory to the family name? There’s money involved as well, you know… you’d be able to afford some decent robes if you won…” “What are you talking about?
He knew he ought to feel exhausted: It was nearly three in the morning, but he felt wide awake—wide awake, and worried. Three days ago—it felt like much longer, but it had only been three days—he had awoken with his scar burning. And tonight, for the first time in thirteen years, Lord Voldemort’s mark had appeared in the sky. What did these things mean? He thought of the letter he had written to Sirius before leaving Privet Drive.
Would Sirius have gotten it yet? When would he reply? Harry lay looking up at the canvas, but no flying fantasies came to him now to ease him to sleep, and it was a long time after Charlie’s snores filled the tent that Harry finally dozed off. MAYHEM AT THE MINISTRY Mr. Weasley woke them after only a few hours sleep. He used magic to pack up the tents, and they left the campsite as quickly as possible, passing Mr. Roberts at the door of his cottage.
He was so dwarfed by her that the top of his pointed hat barely tickled her chin; however, she moved very gracefully for a woman so large. Mad-Eye Moody was doing an extremely ungainly two step with Professor Sinistra, who was nervously avoiding his wooden leg. The Weird Sisters stopped playing, applause filled the hall once more, and Harry let go of Parvati at once. He was glaring at Hermione and Krum, who were dancing nearby. Padma was sitting with her arms and legs crossed, one foot jiggling in time to the music. Every now and then she threw a disgruntled look at Ron, who was completely ignoring her. Parvati sat down on Harry’s other side, crossed her arms and legs too, and within minutes was asked to dance by a boy from Beauxbatons. When the song ended, she did not return.
Hermione came over and sat down in Parvati’s empty chair. She was a bit pink in the face from dancing. Ron didn’t say anything. You—you’re—” Ron was obviously casting around for words strong enough to describe Hermione’s crime, “fraternizing with the enemy, that’s what you’re doing! Honestly—who was the one who was all excited when they saw him arrive?
We could offer him a space in our dormitory, Harry… I wouldn’t mind giving him my bed, I could kip on a camp bed. The Durmstrang students were pulling off their heavy furs and looking up at the starry black ceiling with expressions of interest; a couple of them were picking up the golden plates and goblets and examining them, apparently impressed. Up at the staff table, Filch, the caretaker, was adding chairs. He was wearing his moldy old tailcoat in honor of the occasion.
Harry was surprised to see that he added four chairs, two on either side of Dumbledore’s. He was still staring avidly at Krum. When all the students had entered the Hall and settled down at their House tables, the staff entered, filing up to the top table and taking their seats. Last in line were Professor Dumbledore, Professor Karkaroff, and Madame Maxime. When their headmistress appeared, the pupils from Beauxbatons leapt to their feet.
He staggered back to the cauldron with Harry’s blood. He poured it inside. The liquid within turned, instantly, a blinding white. Wormtail, his job done, dropped to his knees beside the cauldron, then slumped sideways and lay on the ground, cradling the bleeding stump of his arm, gasping and sobbing. The cauldron was simmering, sending its diamond sparks in all directions, so blindingly bright that it turned all else to velvety blackness.
Nothing happened… Let it have drowned, Harry thought, let it have gone wrong… And then, suddenly, the sparks emanating from the cauldron were extinguished. A surge of white steam billowed thickly from the cauldron instead, obliterating everything in front of Harry, so that he couldn’t see Wormtail or Cedric or anything but vapor hanging in the air… It’s gone wrong, he thought… it’s drowned… please… please let it be dead… But then, through the mist in front of him, he saw, with an icy surge of terror, the dark outline of a man, tall and skeletally thin, rising slowly from inside the cauldron. The thin man stepped out of the cauldron, staring at Harry… and Harry stared back into the face that had haunted his nightmares for three years. Whiter than a skull, with wide, livid scarlet eyes and a nose that was flat as a snakes with slits for nostrils… Lord Voldemort had risen again.
The stranger sat down, shook his mane of dark gray hair out of his face, pulled a plate of sausages toward him, raised it to what was left of his nose, and sniffed it. He then took a small knife out of his pocket, speared a sausage on the end of it, and began to eat. His normal eye was fixed upon the sausages, but the blue eye was still darting restlessly around in its socket, taking in the Hall and the students.
Everyone else seemed too transfixed by Moody’s bizarre appearance to do more than stare at him. The one your dad went to help this morning? Moody seemed totally indifferent to his less than warm welcome.
Now she leaned toward Harry and said, “So, Harry… what made you decide to enter the Triwizard Tournament? Even though he wasn’t speaking, it was dashing across the parchment, and in its wake he could make out a fresh sentence: An ugly scar, souvenier of a tragic past, disfigures the otherwise charming face of Harry Potter, whose eyes— “Ignore the quill, Harry,” said Rita Skeeter firmly. Reluctantly Harry looked up at her instead. I didn’t put it in there. We all know you shouldn’t really have entered at all. But don’t worry about that. Our readers love a rebel. His insides squirmed uncomfortably as he spoke.
The quill whizzed across the parchment between them, back and forward as though it were skating. To live up to your name? Do you think that perhaps you were tempted to enter the Triwizard Tournament because—” “I didn’t enter,” said Harry, starting to feel irritated.
Ollivander sent a stream of silver smoke rings across the room from the tip of Cedric’s wand, pronounced himself satisfied, and then said, “Mr. Krum, if you please. He thrust out his wand and stood scowling, with his hands in the pockets of his robes. Ollivander, “this is a Gregorovitch creation, unless I’m much mistaken? A fine wand maker, though the styling is never quite what I… however…” He lifted the wand and examined it minutely, turning it over and over before his eyes. Ollivander, handing Krum back his wand. He handed over his wand.
Ollivander, his pale eyes suddenly gleaming. How well I remember. He could remember it as though it had happened yesterday… Four summers ago, on his eleventh birthday, he had entered Mr. Ollivander’s shop with Hagrid to buy a wand. Ollivander had taken his measurements and then started handing him wands to try.
On Monday last, midway through a Divination lesson, your Daily Prophet reporter witnessed Potter storming from the class, claiming that his scar was hurting too badly to continue studying. It is possible, say top experts at St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries, that Potters brain was affected by the attack inflicted upon him by You-Know-Who, and that his insistence that the scar is still hurting is an expression of his deep seated confusion.
It was all hushed up, though. But he’s made friends with werewolves and giants too. We think he’d do anything for a bit of power. Indeed, the most famous Parselmouth of our times is none other than You-Know-Who himself. A member of the Dark Force Defense League, who wished to remain unnamed, stated that he would regard any wizard who could speak Parseltongue “as worthy of investigation. Personally, I would be highly suspicious of anybody who could converse with snakes, as serpents are often used in the worst kinds of Dark Magic, and are historically associated with evildoers.
Indeed, the applause for Cedric went on so long that it was some time before Dumbledore could make himself heard again. I am sure I can count upon all of you, including the remaining students from Beauxbatons and Durmstrang, to give your champions every ounce of support you can muster. By cheering your champion on, you will contribute in a very real—” But Dumbledore suddenly stopped speaking, and it was apparent to everybody what had distracted him. The fire in the goblet had just turned red again.
Sparks were flying out of it. A long flame shot suddenly into the air, and borne upon it was another piece of parchment. Automatically, it seemed, Dumbledore reached out a long hand and seized the parchment. He held it out and stared at the name written upon it. There was a long pause, during which Dumbledore stared at the slip in his hands, and everyone in the room stared at Dumbledore. And then Dumbledore cleared his throat and read out “Harry Potter. THE FOUR CHAMPIONS Harry sat there, aware that every head in the Great Hall had turned to look at him. He was surely dreaming.