rowling_harry_potter_4_harry_potter_and_the_goblet_of_fire

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Jo an ne R ow lin g
CH APT ER O NE
CH APT ER T W O
CH APT ER T H REE
CH APT ER F O UR
CH APT ER F IV E
CH APT ER S IX
CH APT ER S E V EN
CH APT ER E IG HT
CH APT ER N IN E
CH APT ER T EN
CH APT ER E LEV EN
CH APT ER T W ELV E
CH APT ER T H IR T EEN
CH APT ER F O URT EEN
CH APT ER F IF T EEN
CH APT ER S IX TEEN
CH APT ER S E V EN TEEN
CH APT ER E IG HTEEN
CH APT ER N IN ETEEN
CH APT ER T W EN TY
CH APT ER T W EN TY -O NE
CH APT ER T W EN TY -T W O
CH APT ER T W EN TY -T H REE
CH APT ER T W EN TY -F O UR
CH APT ER T W EN TY -F IV E
CH APT ER T W EN TY -S IX
CH APT ER T W EN TY -S E V EN
CH APT ER T W EN TY -E IG HT
CH APT ER T W EN TY -N IN E
CH APT ER T H IR T Y
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -O NE
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -T W O
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -T H REE
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -F O UR
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -F IV E
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -S IX
CH APT ER T H IR T Y -S E V EN

$$W ord _to _h tm l_ T M P_co n verte r$ $.t m p.h tm l

J oan ne R ow lin g
H arry P otte r a n d t h e G ob le t o f F ir e

C H APT ER O NE
T H E R ID DLE H OUSE
The v illa g ers o f L ittle H an gle ro n still c alle d it “ th e R id dle H ouse ,” e v en
t h ough it h ad b een m an y y ears s in ce th e R id dle f a m ily h ad liv ed th ere . I t s to od
o n a h ill o verlo okin g th e v illa g e, so m e o f its w in dow s b oard ed , tile s m is sin g
f ro m its ro of, a n d iv y s p re ad in g u nch eck ed o ver its fa ce. O nce a fin e-lo okin g
m an or, a n d e asily th e la rg est a n d g ra n dest b uild in g f o r m ile s a ro und, th e R id dle
H ouse w as n ow d am p, d ere lic t, a n d u noccu pie d .
The L ittle H ag le to ns a ll a g re ed th at th e o ld h ouse w as “ cre ep y.” H alf a
c en tu ry a g o, s o m eth in g s tr a n ge a n d h orrib le h ad h ap pen ed th ere , s o m eth in g th at
t h e o ld er in hab ita n ts o f th e v illa g e s till lik ed to d is c u ss w hen to pic s fo r g ossip
w ere sc arc e. T he sto ry h ad b een p ic k ed o ver so m an y tim es, an d h ad b een
e m bro id ere d in s o m an y p la ces, th at n obody w as q uite s u re w hat th e tr u th w as
a n ym ore . E very v ers io n o f th e ta le , h ow ev er, sta rte d in th e sa m e p la ce: F if ty
y ears b efo re , a t d ay bre ak o n a fin e s u m mer's m orn in g w hen th e R id dle H ouse
h ad s till b een w ell k ep t a n d im pre ssiv e, a m aid h ad e n te re d th e d ra w in g r o om to
f in d a ll t h re e R id dle s d ead .
The m aid h ad ru n s c re am in g d ow n th e h ill in to th e v illa g e a n d ro use d a s
m an y p eo ple a s s h e c o uld .
“L yin g th ere w ith th eir e y es w id e o pen ! C old a s ic e! S till in th eir d in ner
t h in gs!”
The p olic e w ere s u m moned , a n d th e w hole o f L ittle H an gle to n h ad s e eth ed
w ith s h ock ed c u rio sity a n d ill- d is g uis e d e x cite m en t. N obody w aste d th eir b re ath
p re te n din g to f e el v ery s a d a b out th e R id dle s, f o r th ey h ad b een m ost u npopula r.
E ld erly M r. a n d M rs . R id dle h ad b een r ic h , s n obbis h , a n d r u de, a n d t h eir g ro w n-
u p s o n, T om , h ad b een , if a n yth in g, w ors e . A ll th e v illa g ers c are d a b out w as th e
i d en tity o f th eir m urd ere r— fo r p la in ly , th re e a p pare n tly h ealth y p eo ple d id n ot
a ll d ro p d ead o f n atu ra l c au se s o n t h e s a m e n ig ht.
The H an ged M an , th e v illa g e p ub, d id a r o arin g tr a d e th at n ig ht; th e w hole
v illa g e s e em ed to h av e tu rn ed o ut to d is c u ss th e m urd ers . T hey w ere re w ard ed
f o r le av in g th eir fir e sid es w hen th e R id dle s' c o ok a rriv ed d ra m atic ally in th eir
m id st a n d a n nounced to th e s u dden ly s ile n t p ub th at a m an c alle d F ra n k B ry ce
h ad j u st b een a rre ste d .
“F ra n k!” c rie d s e v era l p eo ple . “ N ev er!”
Fra n k B ry ce w as th e R id dle s' gard en er. H e liv ed alo ne in a ru n-d ow n
c o tta g e o n th e g ro unds o f th e R id dle H ouse . F ra n k h ad c o m e b ack f ro m th e w ar

with a v ery s tif f le g a n d a g re at d is lik e o f c ro w ds a n d lo ud n ois e s, a n d h ad b een
work in g f o r t h e R id dle s e v er s in ce.
There w as a r u sh t o b uy t h e c o ok d rin ks a n d h ear m ore d eta ils .
“A lw ay s th ought h e w as o dd,” s h e to ld th e e ag erly lis te n in g v illa g ers , a fte r
her fo urth s h erry . “ U nfrie n dly , lik e. I'm s u re if I'v e o ff e re d h im a c u ppa o nce,
I'v e o ff e re d i t a h undre d t im es. N ev er w an te d t o m ix , h e d id n't .”
“A h, n ow ,” s a id a w om an a t t h e b ar, “ h e h ad a h ard w ar, F ra n k. H e l ik es t h e
quie t l if e . T hat's n o r e aso n t o — ”
“W ho e ls e h ad a k ey to th e b ack d oor, th en ?” b ark ed th e c o ok. “ T here 's
been a s p are k ey h an gin g in th e g ard en er's c o tta g e f a r b ack a s I c an r e m em ber!
Nobody f o rc ed t h e d oor l a st n ig ht! N o b ro ken w in dow s! A ll F ra n k h ad t o d o w as
cre ep u p t o t h e b ig h ouse w hile w e w as a ll s le ep in g… ”
The v illa g ers e x ch an ged d ark l o oks.
“I alw ay s th ought th at he had a nasty lo ok ab out him , rig ht en ough,”
gru nte d a m an a t t h e b ar.
“W ar t u rn ed h im f u nny, i f y ou a sk m e,” s a id t h e l a n dlo rd .
“T old y ou I w ould n't lik e to g et o n th e w ro ng s id e o f F ra n k, d id n't I , D ot? ”
sa id a n e x cite d w om an i n t h e c o rn er.
“H orrib le te m per,” s a id D ot, n oddin g f e rv en tly . “ I r e m em ber, w hen h e w as
a k id … ”
By th e f o llo w in g m orn in g, h ard ly a n yone in L ittle H an gle to n d oubte d th at
Fra n k B ry ce h ad k ille d t h e R id dle s.
But o ver i n t h e n eig hborin g t o w n o f G re at H an gle to n, i n t h e d ark a n d d in gy
polic e sta tio n, F ra n k w as stu bborn ly re p eatin g, ag ain an d ag ain , th at h e w as
in nocen t, a n d th at th e o nly p ers o n h e h ad s e en n ear th e h ouse o n th e d ay o f th e
Rid dle s' d eath s h ad b een a t e en ag e b oy, a s tr a n ger, d ark -h air e d a n d p ale . N obody
els e in th e v illa g e h ad s e en a n y s u ch b oy, a n d th e p olic e w ere q uite s u re F ra n k
had i n ven te d h im .
Then , ju st w hen th in gs w ere lo okin g v ery s e rio us fo r F ra n k, th e re p ort o n
th e R id dle s' b odie s c am e b ack a n d c h an ged e v ery th in g.
The p olic e h ad n ev er r e ad a n o dder r e p ort. A t e am o f d octo rs h ad e x am in ed
th e b odie s an d h ad co nclu ded th at n one o f th e R id dle s h ad b een p ois o ned ,
sta b bed , s h ot, s tr a n gle s, s u ff o cate d , o r ( a s f a r a s t h ey c o uld t e ll) h arm ed a t a ll. I n
fa ct ( th e r e p ort c o ntin ued , in a to ne o f u nm is ta k ab le b ew ild erm en t) , th e R id dle s
all a p peare d to b e in p erfe t h ealth — ap art f ro m th e f a ct th at th ey w ere a ll d ead .
The d octo rs d id n ote (a s th ough d ete rm in ed to fin d s o m eth in g w ro ng w ith th e
bodie s) t h at e ach o f t h e R id dle s h ad a l o ok o f t e rro r u pon h is o r h er f a ce— but a s
th e fru str a te d p olic e sa id , w hoev er h eard o f th re e p eo ple b ein g frig hte n ed to
death ?

As th ere w as n o p ro of th at th e R id dle s h ad b een m urd ere d a t a ll, th e p olic e
were fo rc ed to le t F ra n k g o. T he R id dle s w ere b urie d in th e L ittle H an gle to n
ch urc h yard , an d th eir gra v es re m ain ed obje cts of cu rio sity fo r a w hile . T o
ev ery one's s u rp ris e , a n d a m id a c lo ud o f s u sp ic io n, F ra n k B ry ce r e tu rn ed to h is
co tta g e o n t h e g ro unds o f t h e R id dle H ouse .
“'S fa r a s I'm c o ncern ed , h e k ille d th em , a n d I d on't c are w hat th e p olic e
sa y,” s a id D ot in th e H an ged M an . “ A nd if h e h ad a n y d ecen cy, h e'd le av e h ere ,
know in g a s h ow w e k now s h e d id i t.”
But F ra n k d id n ot le av e. H e s ta y ed to te n d th e g ard en fo r th e n ex t fa m ily
who liv ed in th e R id dle H ouse , a n d th en th e n ex t— fo r n eith er fa m ily sta y ed
lo ng. P erh ap s it w as p artly b ecau se o f F ra n k th at th e n ew o w ners s a id th ere w as
a n asty fe elin g a b out th e p la ce, w hic h , in th e a b se n ce o f in hab ita n ts , s ta rte d to
fa ll i n to d is re p air.
The w ealth y m an w ho o w ned th e R id dle H ouse th ese d ay s n eith er liv ed
th ere n or p ut it to an y u se ; th ey sa id in th e v illa g e th at h e k ep t it fo r “ta x
re aso ns,” t h ough n obody w as v ery c le ar w hat t h ese m ig ht b e. T he w ealth y o w ner
co ntin ued to p ay F ra n k to d o th e g ard en in g, h ow ev er. F ra n k w as n earin g h is
se v en ty -s e v en th b ir th day n ow , v ery d eaf, h is b ad le g s tif f e r th an e v er, b ut c o uld
be s e en p otte rin g a ro und t h e f lo w er b ed s in f in e w eath er, e v en th ough t h e w eed s
were s ta rtin g t o c re ep u p o n h im , t r y a s h e m ig ht t o s u ppre ss t h em .
Weed s w ere n ot th e o nly th in gs F ra n k h ad to c o nte n d w ith e ith er. B oys
fro m th e v illa g e m ad e a h ab it o f th ro w in g s to nes th ro ugh th e w in dow s o f th e
Rid dle H ouse . T hey r o de th eir b ic y cle s o ver th e la w ns F ra n k w ork ed s o h ard to
keep s m ooth . O nce o r t w ic e, t h ey b ro ke i n to t h e o ld h ouse f o r a d are . T hey k new
th at o ld F ra n k's d ev otio n to th e h ouse a n d th e g ro unds a m ounte d a lm ost to a n
obse ssio n, a n d i t a m use d t h em t o s e e h im l im pin g a cro ss t h e g ard en , b ra n dis h in g
his stic k a n d y ellin g c ro ak ily a t th em . F ra n k, fo r h is p art, b elie v ed th e b oys
to rm en te d h im b ecau se th ey, lik e th eir p are n ts a n d g ra n dpare n ts , th ough h im a
murd ere r. S o w hen F ra n k a w oke o ne n ig ht in A ugust a n d s a w s o m eth in g v ery
odd u p a t th e o ld h ouse , h e m ere ly a ssu m ed th at th e b oys h ad g one o ne ste p
fu rth er i n t h eir a tte m pts t o p unis h h im .
It w as F ra n k's b ad l e g t h at w oke h im ; i t w as p ain in g h im w ors e t h an e v er i n
his o ld a g e. H e g ot u p a n d lim ped d ow nsta ir s in to th e k itc h en w ith th e id ea o f
re fillin g h is h ot- w ate r b ottle to e ase th e stif f n ess in h is k nee. S ta n din g a t th e
sin k, fillin g th e kettle , he lo oked up at th e R id dle H ouse an d sa w lig hts
glim merin g in its u pper w in dow s. F ra n k k new a t o nce w hat w as g oin g o n. T he
boys h ad b ro ken in to th e h ouse a g ain , a n d ju dgin g b y th e flic k erin g q uality o f
th e l ig ht, t h ey h ad s ta rte d a f ir e .
Fra n k h ad n o te le p hone, in a n y c ase , h e h ad d eep ly m is tr u ste d th e p olic e

ev er s in ce th ey h ad ta k en h im in fo r q uestio nin g a b out th e R id dle s' d eath s. H e
put d ow n th e k ettle a t o nce, h urrie d b ack u psta ir s a s fa st a s h is b ad le g w ould
allo w , a n d w as s o on b ack in h is k itc h en , f u lly d re sse d a n d r e m ovin g a r u sty o ld
key fro m its h ook b y th e d oor. H e p ic k ed u p h is w alk in g stic k , w hic h w as
pro pped a g ain st t h e w all, a n d s e t o ff i n to t h e n ig ht.
The fro nt d oor o f th e R id dle H ouse b ore n o s ig n o f b ein g fo rc ed , n or d id
an y o f th e w in dow s. F ra n k lim ped a ro und to th e b ack o f th e h ouse u ntil h e
re ach ed a d oor a lm ost c o m ple te ly h id den b y iv y, to ok o ut th e o ld k ey, p ut it in to
th e l o ck , a n d o pen ed t h e d oor n ois e le ssly .
He l e t h im se lf i n to t h e c av ern ous k itc h en . F ra n k h ad n ot e n te re d i t f o r m an y
years ; n ev erth ele ss, a lth ough it w as v ery d ark , h e re m em bere d w here th e d oor
in to th e h all w as, a n d h e g ro ped h is w ay to w ard s it, h is n ostr ils f u ll o f th e s m ell
of d ecay, e ars p ric k ed fo r a n y s o und o f fo ots te p s o r v oic es fro m o verh ead . H e
re ach ed t h e h all, w hic h w as a l ittle l ig hte r o w in g t o t h e l a rg e m ullio ned w in dow s
on e ith er s id e o f th e f ro nt d oor, a n d s ta rte d to c lim b th e s ta ir s , b le ssin g th e d ust
th at l a y t h ic k u pon t h e s to ne, b ecau se i t m uff le d t h e s o und o f h is f e et a n d s tic k .
On th e la n din g, F ra n k tu rn ed rig ht, a n d sa w a t o nce w here th e in tr u ders
were : A t th e e v ery e n d o f th e p assa g e a d oor s to od a ja r, a n d a flic k erin g lig ht
sh one th ro ugh th e g ap , c astin g a lo ng s liv er o f g old a cro ss th e b la ck f lo or. F ra n k
ed ged c lo se r a n d c lo se r, h e w as a b le t o s e e a n arro w s lic e o f t h e r o om b ey ond.
The f ir e , h e n ow s a w , h ad b een lit in th e g ra te . T his s u rp ris e d h im . T hen h e
sto pped m ovin g a n d l is te n ed i n te n tly , f o r a m an 's v oic e s p oke w ith in t h e r o om ; i t
so unded t im id a n d f e arfu l.
“T here i s a l ittle m ore i n t h e b ottle , M y L ord , i f y ou a re s till h ungry .”
“L ate r,” sa id a se co nd voic e. T his to o belo nged to a m an — but it w as
str a n gely h ig h-p itc h ed , a n d c o ld a s a s u dden b la st o f ic y w in d. S om eth in g a b out
th at v oic e m ad e t h e s p ars e h air s o n t h e b ack o f F ra n k's n eck s ta n d u p. “ M ove m e
clo se r t o t h e f ir e , W orm ta il.”
Fra n k tu rn ed h is rig ht e ar to w ard th e d oor, th e b ette r to h ear. T here c am e
th e c lin k o f a b ottle b ein g p ut d ow n u pon s o m e h ard s u rfa ce, a n d th en th e d ull
sc ra p in g n ois e o f a h eav y c h air b ein g d ra g ged a cro ss th e flo or. F ra n k c au ght a
glim pse o f a s m all m an , h is b ack to th e d oor, p ush in g th e c h air in to p la ce. H e
was w earin g a lo ng b la ck c lo ak , a n d th ere w as a b ald p atc h a t th e b ack o f h is
head . T hen h e w en t o ut o f s ig ht a g ain .
“W here i s N ag in i? ” s a id t h e c o ld v oic e.
“I— I d on't k now , M y L ord ,” s a id th e f ir s t v oic e n erv ously . “ S he s e t o ut to
ex plo re t h e h ouse , I t h in k… ”
“Y ou w ill m ilk h er b efo re w e re tir e , W orm ta il,” s a id th e s e co nd v oic e. “ I
will n eed f e ed in g i n t h e n ig ht. T he j o urn ey h as t ir e d m e g re atly .”

Bro w f u rro w ed , F ra n k i n clin ed h is g ood e ar s till c lo se r t o t h e d oor, l is te n in g
very h ard . T here w as a p au se , a n d t h en t h e m an c alle d W orm ta il s p oke a g ain .
“M y L ord , m ay I a sk h ow l o ng w e a re g oin g t o s ta y h ere ?”
“A w eek ,” s a id th e c o ld v oic e. “ P erh ap se lo nger. T he p la ce is m odera te ly
co m fo rta b le , a n d th e p la n c an not p ro ceed y et. It w ould b e fo olis h to a ct b efo re
th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up i s o ver.”
Fra n k in se rte d a g narle d f in ger in to h is e ar a n d r o ta te d it. O win g, n o d oubt,
to a b uild up o f e arw ax , h e h ad h eard th e w ord “ Q uid ditc h ,” w hic h w as n ot a
word a t a ll.
“T he— th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, M y L ord ?” s a id W orm ta il. ( F ra n k d ug h is
fin ger s till m ore v ig oro usly in to h is e ar.) “ F org iv e m e, b ut— I d o n ot u nders ta n d
—why s h ould w e w ait u ntil t h e W orld C up i s o ver? ”
“B ecau se , fo ol, a t th is v ery m om en t w iz ard s a re p ourin g in to th e c o untr y
fro m a ll o ver th e w orld , a n d e v ery m ed dle r f ro m th e M in is tr y o f M ag ic w ill b e
on duty , on th e w atc h fo r sig ns of usu su al activ ity , ch eck in g an d double -
ch eck in g id en titie s. T hey w ill b e o bse sse d w ith s e cu rity , le st th e M uggle s n otic e
an yth in g. S o w e w ait.”
Fra n k s to pped tr y in g to c le ar o ut h is e ar. H e h ad d is tin ctly h eard th e w ord s
“M in is tr y of M ag ic ,” “w iz ard s,” an d “M uggle s.” Pla in ly , each of th ese
ex pre ssio ns m ean t s o m eth in g s e cre t, a n d F ra n k c o uld th in k o f o nly tw o s o rts o f
peo ple w ho w ould s p eak in c o de: s p ie s a n d c rim in als . F ra n k tig hte n ed h is h old
on h is w alk in g s tic k o nce m ore , a n d l is te n ed m ore c lo se ly s till.
“Y our L ord sh ip i s s till d ete rm in ed , t h en ?” W orm ta il s a id q uie tly .
“C erta in ly I a m d ete rm in ed , W orm ta il.” T here w as a n ote o f m en ace in th e
co ld v oic e n ow .
A s lig ht p au se f o llo w ed — an d t h e W orm ta il s p oke, t h e w ord s t u m blin g f ro m
him in a ru sh , a s th ough h e w as fo rc in g h im se lf to s a y th is b efo re h e lo st h is
nerv e.
“It c o uld b e d one w ith out H arry P otte r, M y L ord .”
Anoth er p au se , m ore p ro tr a cte d , a n d t h en —
“W ith out H arry P otte r? ” b re ath ed t h e s e co nd v oic e s o ftly . “ I s e e… ”
“M y L ord , I d o n ot s a y th is o ut o f c o ncern f o r th e b oy!” s a id W orm ta il, h is
voic e r is in g s q ueak ily . “ T he b oy i s n oth in g t o m e, n oth in g a t a ll! I t i s m ere ly t h at
if w e w ere t o u se a n oth er w itc h o r w iz ard — an y w iz ard — th e t h in g c o uld b e d one
so m uch m ore q uic k ly ! If y ou a llo w ed m e to le av e y ou fo r a s h ort w hile — you
know th at I c an d is g uis e m yse lf m ost e ff e ctiv ely — I c o uld b e b ack h ere in a s
little a s t w o d ay s w ith a s u ita b le p ers o n— ”
“I c o uld u se a n oth er w iz ard ,” s a id t h e c o ld v oic e s o ftly , “ th at i s t r u e… ”
“M y L ord , it m ak es se n se ,” sa id W orm ta il, so undin g th oro ughly re lie v ed

now . “ L ay in g h an ds o n H arry P otte r w ould b e s o d if f ic u lt, h e i s s o w ell p ro te cte d
—”
“A nd s o y ou v olu nte er t o g o a n d f e tc h m e a s u bstitu te ? I w onder… p erh ap s
th e ta sk o f n urs in g m e h as b eco m e w earis o m e fo r y ou, W orm ta il? C ould th is
su ggestio n o f a b an donin g th e p la n b e n oth in g m ore th an a n a tte m pt to d ese rt
me?”
“M y L ord ! I — I h av e n o w is h t o l e av e y ou, n one a t a ll— ”
“D o n ot lie to m e!” h is se d th e s e co nd v oic e. “ I c an a lw ay s te ll, W orm ta il!
You a re re g re ttin g th at y ou e v er re tu rn ed to m e. I re v olt y ou. I s e e y ou flin ch
when y ou l o ok a t m e, f e el y ou s h udder w hen y ou t o uch m e… ”
“N o! M y d ev otio n t o Y our L ord sh ip — ”
“Y our d ev otio n is n oth in g m ore th an c o w ard ic e. Y ou w ould n ot b e h ere if
you h ad a n yw here e ls e to g o. H ow a m I to s u rv iv e w ith out y ou, w hen I n eed
fe ed in g e v ery f e w h ours ? W ho i s t o m ilk N ag in i? ”
“B ut y ou s e em s o m uch s tr o nger, M y L ord — ”
“L ia r,” b re ath ed th e s e co nd v oic e. “ I a m n o s tr o nger, a n d a f e w d ay s a lo ne
would b e e n ough t o r o b m e o f t h e l ittle h ealth I h av e r e g ain ed u nder y our c lu m sy
care . S ile n ce!”
Worm ta il, w ho h ad b een s p utte rin g in co here n tly , fe ll s ile n t a t o nce. F or a
fe w se co nds, F ra n k c o uld h ear n oth in g b ut th e fir e c ra ck lin g. T he th e se co nd
man s p oke o nce m ore , i n a w his p er t h at w as a lm ost a h is s.
“I h av e m y re aso ns fo r u sin g th e b oy, a s I h av e a lr e ad y e x pla in ed to y ou,
an d I w ill u se n o o th er. I h av e w aite d th ir te en y ears . A fe w m ore m onth s w ill
mak e n o d if f e re n ce. A s f o r t h e p ro te ctio n s u rro undin g t h e b oy, I b elie v e m y p la n
will b e e ff e ctiv e. A ll th at is n eed ed is a little c o ura g e fro m y ou, W orm ta il—
co ura g e you w ill fin d, unle ss you w is h to fe el th e fu ll ex te n t of Lord
Vold erm ort's w ra th — ”
“M y L ord , I m ust sp eak !” sa id W orm ta il, p an ic in h is v oic e n ow . “A ll
th ro ugh o ur jo urn ey I h av e g one o ver th e p la n in m y h ead — My L ord , B erth a
Jo rk in 's d is a p peara n ce w ill n ot g o u nnotic ed fo r lo ng, a n d if w e p ro ceed , if I
murd er— ”
“If? ” w his p ere d t h e s e co nd v oic e. “ If? I f y ou f o llo w t h e p la n , W orm ta il, t h e
Min is tr y n eed n ev er k now th at a n yone e ls e h as d ie d . Y ou w ill d o it q uie tly a n d
with out f u ss; I o nly w is h t h at i c o uld d o i t m yse lf , b ut i n m y p re se n t c o nditio n…
Com e, W orm ta il, o ne m ore d eath a n d o ur p ath to H arry P otte r is c le ar. I a m n ot
ask in g y ou to d o it a lo ne. B y th at tim e, m y f a ith fu l s e ra n t w ill h av e r e jo in ed u s
—”
“I a m a fa ith fu l s e rv an t,” s a id W orm ta il, th e m ere st tr a ce o f s u lle n ness in
his v oic e.

“W orm ta il, I n eed so m eb ody w ith b ra in s, so m eb ody w hose lo yalty h as
nev er w av ere d , a n d y ou, u nfo rtu nate ly , f u lf ill n eith er r e q uir e m en t.”
“I f o und y ou,” s a id W orm ta il, a n d th ere w as d efin ite ly a s u lk y e d ge to h is
voic e n ow . “ I w as t h e o ne w ho f o und y ou. I b ro ught y ou B erth a J o rk in s.”
“T hat is tr u e,” sa id th e se co nd m an , so undin g am use d . “A str o ke of
brillia n ce I w ould n ot h av e th ought p ossib le fro m y ou, W orm ta il— th ough, if
tr u th b e t o ld , y ou w ere n ot a w are h ow u se fu l s h e w ould b e w hen y ou c au ght h er,
were y ou?”
“I— I t h ought s h e m ig ht b e u se fu l, M y L ord — ”
“L ia r,” s a id th e s e co nd v oic e a g ain , th e c ru el a m use m en t m ore p ro nounced
th an e v er. “ H ow ev er, I d o n ot d en y t h at h er i n fo rm atio n w as i n valu ab le . W ith out
it, I c o uld n ev er h av e f o rm ed o ur p la n , a n d f o r th at, y ou w ill h av e y our r e w ard ,
Worm ta il. I w ill a llo w y ou to p erfo rm a n e sse n tia l ta sk f o r m e, o ne th at m an y o f
my f o llo w ers w ould g iv e t h eir r ig ht h an ds t o p erfo rm … ”
“R -re ally , M y L ord ? W hat— ?” W orm ta il s o unded t e rrif ie d a g ain .
“A h, W orm ta il, y ou d on't w an t m e to sp oil th e su rp ris e ? Y our p art w ill
co m e a t th e v ery e n d… b ut I p ro m is e y ou, y ou w ill h av e th e h onor o f b ein g ju st
as u se fu l a s B erth a J o rk in s.”
“Y ou… y ou… ” W orm ta il's v oic e s u dden ly s o unded h oars e , a s th ough h is
mouth h ad g one v ery d ry . “ Y ou… a re g oin g… t o k ill m e t o o?”
“W orm ta il, W orm ta il,” s a id th e c o ld v oic e s ilk ily , “ w hy w ould I k ill y ou? I
kille d B erth a b ecau se I h ad to . S he w as fit fo r n oth in g a fte r m y q uestio nin g,
quite u se le ss. I n a n y c ase , a w kw ard q uestio ns w ould h av e b een a sk ed if s h e h ad
gone b ack to th e M in is tr y w ith th e n ew s th at s h e h ad m et y ou o n h er h olid ay s.
Wiz ard s w ho a re s u ppose d to b e d ead w ould d o w ell n ot to r u n in to M in is tr y o f
Mag ic w itc h es a t w ay sid e i n ns… ”
Worm ta il m utte re d s o m eth in g s o q uie tly th at F ra n k c o uld n ot h ear it, b ut it
mad e t h e s e co nd m an l a u gh— an e n tir e ly m ir th le ss l a u gh, c o ld a s h is s p eech .
“W e c o uld h av e m odif ie d h er m em ory ? B ut M em ory C harm s c an b e b ro ken
by a p ow erfu l w iz ard , a s I p ro ved w hen I q uestio ned h er. I t w ould b e a n i n su lt t o
her m em ory n ot t o u se t h e i n fo rm atio n I e x tr a cte d f ro m h er, W orm ta il.”
Out in th e c o rrid or, F ra n k s u dden ly b ecam e a w are th at th e h an d g rip pin g
his w alk in g stic k w as slip pery w ith sw eat. T he m an w ith th e c o ld v oic e h ad
kille d a w om an . H e w as ta lk in g a b out it w ith out a n y k in d o f re m ors e — with
am use m en t. H e w as d an gero us— a m ad m an . A nd h e w as p la n nin g m ore m urd ers
—th is b oy, H arry P otte r, w hoev er h e w as— was i n d an ger—
Fra n k k new w hat h e m ust d o. N ow , i f e v er, w as t h e t im e t o g o t o t h e p olic e.
He w ould c re ep o ut o f th e h ouse a n d h ead s tr a ig ht f o r th e te le p hone b ox in th e
villa g e… b ut th e c o ld v oic e w as s p eak in g a g ain , a n d F ra n k r e m ain ed w here h e

was, f ro zen t o t h e s p ot, l is te n in g w ith a ll h is m ig ht.
“O ne m ore m urd er… m y f a ith fu l s e rv an t a t H ogw arts … H arry P otte r is a s
good a s m in e, W orm ta il. It is d ecid ed . T here w ill b e n o m ore a rg um en t. B ut
quie t… I t h in k I h ear N ag in i… ”
And th e se co nd m an 's v oic e c h an ged . H e sta rte d m ak in g n ois e s su ch a s
Fra n k h ad n ev er h eard b efo re ; h e w as h is sin g an d sp ittin g w ith out d ra w in g
bre ath . F ra n k t h ought h e m ust b e h av in g s o m e s o rt o f f it o r s e iz u re .
And th en F ra n k h eard m ovem en t b eh in d h im in th e d ark p assa g ew ay. H e
tu rn ed t o l o ok, a n d f o und h im se lf p ara ly zed w ith f rig ht.
Som eth in g w as s lith erin g t o w ard h im a lo ng t h e d ark c o rrid or f lo or, a n d a s i t
dre w n eare r to th e s liv er o f f ir e lig ht, h e r e aliz ed w ith a th rill o f te rro r th at it w as
a g ig an tic s n ak e, a t le ast tw elv e f e et lo ng. H orrif ie d , tr a n sfix ed , F ra n k s ta re d a s
its u ndula tin g b ody c u t a w id e, c u rv in g tr a ck th ro ugh th e th ic k d ust o n th e f lo or,
co m in g c lo se r a n d c lo se r— What w as h e to d o? T he o nly m ean s o f e sc ap e w as
in to th e r o om w here th e tw o m en s a t p lo ttin g m urd er, y et if h e s ta y ed w here h e
was t h e s n ak e w ould s u re ly k ill h im —
But b efo re h e h ad m ad e h is d ecis io n, th e sn ak e w as le v el w ith h im , a n d
th en , in cre d ib ly , m ir a cu lo usly , it w as passin g; it w as fo llo w in g th e sp ittin g,
his sin g n ois e s m ad e b y t h e c o ld v oic e b ey ond t h e d oor, a n d i n s e co nds, t h e t ip o f
its d ia m ond-p atte rn ed t a il h ad v an is h ed t h ro ugh t h e g ap .
There w as sw eat o n F ra n k's fo re h ead n ow , a n d th e h an d o n th e w alk in g
stic k w as tr e m blin g. I n sid e th e r o om , th e c o ld v oic e w as c o ntin uin g to h is s, a n d
Fra n k w as v is ite d b y a s tr a n ge i d ea, a n i m possib le i d ea… T his m an c o uld t a lk t o
sn ak es.
Fra n k d id n't u nders ta n d w hat w as g oin g o n. H e w an te d m ore th an a n yth in g
to b e b ack in h is b ed w ith h is h ot- w ate r b ottle . T he p ro ble m w as th at h is le g s
did n't se em to w an t to m ove. A s h e sto od th ere sh ak in g a n d tr y in g to m aste r
him se lf , t h e c o ld v oic e s w itc h ed a b ru ptly t o E nglis h a g ain .
“N ag in i h as i n te re stin g n ew s, W orm ta il,” i t s a id .
“In -in deed , M y L ord ?” s a id W orm ta il.
“In deed , y es,” s a id th e v oic e, “ A cco rd in g to N ag in i, th ere is a n o ld M uggle
sta n din g r ig ht o uts id e t h is r o om , l is te n in g t o e v ery w ord w e s a y.”
Fra n k d id n't h av e a c h an ce to h id e h im se lf . T here w ere fo ots te p s a n d th en
th e d oor o f t h e r o om w as f lu ng w id e o pen .
A s h ort, b ald in g m an w ith g ra y in g h air , a p oin te d n ose , a n d s m all, w ate ry
ey es s to od b efo re F ra n k, a m ix tu re o f f e ar a n d a la rm i n h is f a ce.
“In vite h im i n sid e, W orm ta il. W here a re y our m an ners ? ”
The c o ld v oic e w as c o m in g fro m th e a n cie n t a rm ch air b efo re th e fir e , b ut
Fra n k c o uld n't s e e t h e s p eak er. t h e s n ak e, o n t h e o th er h an d, w as c u rle d u p o n t h e

ro ttin g h earth r u g, l ik e s o m e h orrib le t r a v esty o f a p et d og.
Worm ta il b eck oned F ra n k in to th e r o om . T hough s till d eep ly s h ak en , F ra n k
to ok a f ir m er g rip o n h is w alk in g s tic k a n d l im ped o ver t h e t h re sh old .
The fir e w as th e o nly so urc e o f lig ht in th e ro om ; it cast lo ng, sp id ery
sh ad ow s u pon t h e w alls . F ra n k s ta re d a t t h e b ack o f t h e a rm ch air ; t h e m an i n sid e
it s e em ed to b e e v en s m alle r th an h is s e rv an t, fo r F ra n k c o uld n't e v en s e e th e
back o f h is h ead .
“Y ou h eard e v ery th in g, M uggle ?” s a id t h e c o ld v oic e.
“W hat's th at y ou'r e c allin g m e?” s a id F ra n k d efia n tly , f o r n ow th at h e w as
in sid e th e ro om , n ow th at th e tim e h ad c o m e fo r so m e so rt o f a ctio n, h e fe lt
bra v er; i t h ad a lw ay s b een s o i n t h e w ar.
“I a m c allin g y ou a M uggle ,” s a id th e v oic e c o olly . “ It m ean s th at y ou a re
not a w iz ard .”
“I d on't k now w hat y ou m ean b y w iz ard ,” s a id F ra n k, h is v oic e g ro w in g
ste ad ie r. “ A ll I k now is I'v e h eard e n ough to in te re st th e p olic e to nig ht, I h av e.
You'v e d one m urd er a n d y ou'r e p la n nin g m ore ! A nd I'l l te ll y outh is to o,” h e
ad ded , o n a s u dden i n sp ir a tio n, “ m y w if e k now s I 'm u p h ere , a n d i f I d on't c o m e
back — ”
“Y ou h av e n o w if e ,” s a id te c o ld v oic e, v ery q uie tly . “ N obody k now s y ou
are h ere . Y ou to ld n obody th at y ou w ere c o m in g. D o n ot lie to L ord V old em ort,
Muggle , f o r h e k now s… h e a lw ay s k now s… ”
“Is th at r ig ht? ” s a id F ra n k r o ughly . “ L ord , is it? W ell, I d on't th in k m uch o f
your m an ners , M y L ord . T urn 'r o und a n d f a ce m e l ik e a m an , w hy d on't y ou?”
“B ut I a m n ot a m an , M uggle ,” s a id t h e c o ld v oic e, b are ly a u dib le n ow o ver
th e c ra ck lin g o f th e fla m es. “ I a m m uch , m uch m ore th an a m an . H ow ev er…
why n ot? I w ill f a ce y ou… W orm ta il, c o m e t u rn m y c h air a ro und.”
The s e rv an t g av e a w him per.
“Y ou h eard m e, W orm ta il.”
Slo w ly , w ith h is fa ce sc re w ed u p, a s th ough h e w ould ra th er h av e d one
an yth in g th an a p pro ach h is m aste r a n d th e h earth ru g w here th e s n ak e la y, th e
sm all m an w alk ed f o rw ard a n d b eg an to tu rn th e c h air. T he s n ak e lif te d its u gly
tr ia n gula r h ead a n d h is se d s lig htly a s t h e l e g s o f t h e c h air s n ag ged o n i ts r u g.
And th en th e c h air w as f a cin g F ra n k, a n d h e s a w w hat w as s ittin g in it. H is
walk in g s tic k f e ll to th e f lo or w ith a c la tte r. H e o pen ed h is m outh a n d le t o ut a
sc re am . H e w as s c re am in g s o lo udly th at h e n ev er h eard th e w ord s th e th in g in
th e c h air s p oke a s it ra is e d a w an d. T here w as a fla sh o f g re en lig ht, a ru sh in g
so und, a n d F ra n k B ry ce c ru m ple d . H e w as d ead b efo re h e h it t h e f lo or.
Tw o h undre d m ile s a w ay, t h e b oy c alle d H arry P otte r w oke w ith a s ta rt.

C H APT ER T W O
T H E S C AR
Harry la y fla t o n h is b ack , b re ath in g h ard a s th ough h e h ad b een ru nnin g.
H e h ad a w oken f ro m a v iv id d re am w ith h is h an ds p re sse d o ver h is f a ce. T he o ld
s c ar o n h is fo re h ead , w hic h w as sh ap ed lik e a b olt o f lig htn in g, w as b urn in g
b en eath h is fin gers a s th ough s o m eo ne h ad ju st p re sse d a w hite -h ot w ir e to h is
s k in .
He sa t u p, o ne h an d still o n h is sc ar, th e o th er h an d re ach in g o ut in th e
d ark ness fo r h is g la sse s, w hic h w ere o n th e b ed sid e ta b le . H e p ut th em o n a n d
h is b ed ro om c am e in to c le are r fo cu s, lit b y a fa in t, m is ty o ra n ge lig ht th at w as
f ilte rin g t h ro ugh t h e c u rta in s f ro m t h e s tr e et l a m p o uts id e t h e w in dow .
Harry r a n h is f in gers o ver th e s c ar a g ain . I t w as s till p ain fu l. H e tu rn ed o n
t h e la m p besid e him , sc ra m ble d out of bed , cro sse d th e ro om , open ed his
w ard ro be, a n d p eere d in to th e m ir ro r o n th e in sid e o f th e d oor. A s k in ny b oy o f
f o urte en lo oked b ack at h im , h is b rig ht g re en ey es p uzzle d u nder h is u ntid y
b la ck h air. H e e x am in ed th e lig htn in g-b olt s c ar o f h is r e fle ctio n m ore c lo se ly . I t
l o oked n orm al, b ut i t w as s till s tin gin g.
harry tr ie d to re call w hat he had been dre am in g ab out befo re he had
a w oken . I t h ad s e em ed s o r e al… T here h ad b een t w o p eo ple h e k new a n d o ne h e
d id n't … He c o ncen tr a te d h ard , f ro w nin g, t r y in g t o r e m em ber…
The d im p ic tu re o f a d ark en ed r o om c am e t o h im … T here h ad b een a s n ak e
o n a h earth r u g… a s m all m an c alle d P ete r, n ic k nam ed W orm ta il… a n d a c o ld ,
h ig h v oic e… th e v oic e o f L ord V old em ort. H arry f e lt a s th ough a n ic e c u be h ad
s lip ped d ow n i n to h is s to m ach a t t h e v ery t h ought…
He clo se d his ey es tig htly an d tr ie d to re m em ber w hat V old em ort had
l o oked lik e, b ut it w as im possib le … A ll H arry k new w as th at a t th e m om en t
w hen V old em ort's c h air h ad s w ung a ro und, a n d h e, H arry , h ad s e en w hat w as
s ittin g in it, h e h ad f e lt a s p asm o f h orro r, w hic h h ad a w oken h im … o r h ad th at
b een t h e p ain i n h is s c ar?
And w ho h ad th e o ld m an b een ? F or th ere h ad d efin ite ly b een a n o ld m an ;
H arry h ad w atc h ed h im f a ll to th e g ro und. I t w as a ll b eco m in g c o nfu se d . H arry
p ut h is fa ce in to h is h an ds, b lo ck in g o ut h is b ed ro om , tr y in g to h old o n to th e
p ic tu re o f th at d im ly lit r o om , b ut it w as lik e tr y in g to k eep w ate r in h is c u pped
h an ds; th e d eta ils w ere n ow tr ic k lin g a w ay as fa st as h e tr ie d to h old o n to
t h em … V old em ort an d W orm ta il had been ta lk in g ab out so m eo ne th ey had
k ille d , t h ough H arry c o uld n ot r e m em ber t h e n am e… a n d t h ey h ad b een p lo ttin g

to k ill s o m eo ne e ls e … h im !
Harry t o ok h is f a ce o ut o f h is h an ds, o pen ed h is e y es, a n d s ta re d a ro und h is
bed ro om a s th ough e x pectin g to s e e s o m eth in g u nusu al th ere . A s it h ap pen ed ,
th ere w as an ex tr a o rd in ary n um ber o f u nusu al th in gs in th is ro om . A la rg e
wooden tr u nk sto od open at th e fo ot of his bed , re v ealin g a cau ld ro n,
bro om stic k , b la ck ro bes, a n d a sso rte d sp ellb ooks. R olls o f p arc h m en t litte re d
th at p art o f h is d esk th at w as n ot ta k en u p b y th e la rg e, e m pty c ag e in w hic h h is
sn ow y o w l, H ed w ig , u su ally p erc h ed . O n th e flo or b esid e h is b ed a b ook la y
open ; H arry h ad b een r e ad in g it b efo re h e f e ll a sle ep la st n ig ht. T he p ic tu re s in
th is b ook w ere a ll m ovin g. M en in b rig ht o ra n ge r o bes w ere z o om in g in a n d o ut
of s ig ht o n b ro om stic k s, t h ro w in g a r e d b all t o o ne a n oth er.
Harry w alk ed o ver t o t h e b ook, p ic k ed i t u p, a n d w atc h ed o n o f t h e w iz ard s
sc o re a s p ecta cu la r g oal b y p uttin g th e b all th ro ugh a f if ty -fo ot- h ig h h oop. T hen
he s n ap ped th e b ook s h ut. E ven Q uid ditc h — in H arry 's o pin io n, th e b est s p ort in
th e w orld — co uld n't d is tr a ct h im at th e m om en t. H e p la ced F ly in g w ith th e
Can nons o n h is b ed sid e t a b le , c ro sse d t o t h e w in dow , a n d d re w b ack t h e c u rta in s
to s u rv ey t h e s tr e et b elo w .
Priv et D riv e lo oked ex actly as a re sp ecta b le su burb an str e et w ould be
ex pecte d to lo ok in th e e arly h ours o f S atu rd ay m orn in g. A ll th e c u rta in s w ere
clo se d . A s fa r a s H arry c o uld se e th ro ugh th e d ark ness, th ere w asn 't a liv in g
cre atu re i n s ig ht, n ot e v en a c at.
And y et… a n d y et… H arry w en t r e stle ssly b ack t o t h e b ed a n d s a t d ow n o n
it, ru nnin g a fin ger o ver h is sc ar a g ain . It w asn 't th e p ain th at b oth ere d h im ;
Harry w as n o s tr a n ger t o p ain a n d i n ju ry . H e h ad l o st a ll t h e b ones f ro m h is r ig ht
arm o nce a n d h ad th em p ain fu lly re g ro w n in a n ig ht. T he s a m e a rm h ad b een
pie rc ed b y a v en em ous f o ot- lo ng f a n g n ot lo ng a fte rw ard . O nly la st y ear H arry
had fa lle n fif ty fe et fro m an air b orn bro om stic k . H e w as use d to biz arre
accid en ts a n d in ju rie s; th ey w ere u nav oid ab le if y ou a tte n ded H ogw arts S ch ool
of W itc h cra ft a n d W iz ard ry a n d h ad a k nack f o r a ttr a ctin g a l o t o f t r o uble .
No, th e th in g th at w as b oth erin g H arry w as th e la st tim e h is s c ar h ad h urt
him , i t h ad b een b ecau se V old em ort h ad b een c lo se b y… B ut V old em ort c o uld n't
be h ere , n ow … T he id ea o f V old em ort lu rk in g in P riv et D riv e w as ab su rd ,
im possib le …
Harry lis te n ed c lo se ly to th e s ile n ce a ro und h im . W as h e h alf e x pectin g to
hear th e c re ak o f a s ta ir o r th e s w is h o f a c lo ak ? A nd th en h e ju m ped s lig htly a s
he h eard h is c o usin D udle y g iv e a tr e m en dous g ru ntin g sn ore fro m th e n ex t
ro om .
Harry s h ook h im se lf m en ta lly ; h e w as b ein g s tu pid . T here w as n o o ne i n t h e
house w ith h im e x cep t U ncle V ern on, A unt P etu nia , a n d D udle y, a n d th ey w ere

pla in ly s till a sle ep , t h eir d re am s u ntr o uble d a n d p ain le ss.
Asle ep w as th e w ay H arry lik ed th e D urs le y s b est; it w asn 't a s th ough th ey
were e v er a n y h elp t o h im a w ak e. U ncle V ern on, A unt P etu nia , a n d D udle y w ere
Harry 's o nly liv in g r e la tiv es. T hey w ere M uggle s w ho h ate d a n d d esp is e d m ag ic
in a n y f o rm , w hic h m ean t t h at H arry w as a b out a s w elc o m e i n t h eir h ouse a s d ry
ro t. T hey h ad e x pla in ed a w ay H arry 's lo ng a b se n ces a t H ogw arts o ver th e la st
th re e y ears b y te llin g e v ery one th at h e w en t to S t. B ru tu s's S ecu re C en te r fo r
In cu ra b ly C rim in al B oys. T hey k new p erfe ctly w ell th at, a s a n u ndera g e w iz ard ,
Harry w asn 't a llo w ed to u se m ag ic o uts id e H ogw arts , b ut th ey w ere s till a p t to
bla m e h im f o r a n yth in g th at w en t w ro ng a b out th e h ouse . H arry h ad n ev er b een
ab le to c o nfid e in th em o r te ll th em a n yth in g a b out h is lif e in th e w iz ard in g
world . T he v ery id ea o f g oin g to th em w hen th ey a w oke, a n d te llin g th em a b out
his s c ar h urtin g h im , a n d a b out h is w orrie s a b out V old em ort, w as l a u ghab le .
And y et it w as b ecau se o f V old em ort th at H arry h ad c o m e to liv e w ith th e
Durs le y s i n t h e f ir s t p la ce. I f i t h ad n't b een f o r V old em ort, H arry w ould n ot h av e
had th e lig htn in g sc ar o n h is fo re h ead . If it h ad n't b een fo r V old em ort, H arry
would s till h av e h ad p are n ts …
Harry h ad b een a y ear o ld th e n ig ht th at V old em ort— th e m ost p ow erfu l
Dark w iz ard fo r a c en tu ry , a w iz ard w ho h ad b een g ain in g p ow er s te ad ily fo r
ele v en y ears — arriv ed a t h is h ouse a n d k ille d h is fa th er a n d m oth er. V old em ort
had t h en t u rn ed h is w an d o n H arry ; h e h ad p erfo rm ed t h e c u rs e t h at h ad d is p ose d
of m an y fu ll- g ro w n w itc h es an d w iz ard s in his ste ad y ris e to pow er— an d,
in cre d ib ly , it h ad n ot w ork ed . In ste ad o f k illin g th e sm all b oy, th e c u rs e h ad
re b ounded u pon V old em ort. H arry h ad su rv iv ed w ith n oth in g b ut a lig htn in g-
sh ap ed c u t o n h is f o re h ead , a n d V old em ort h ad b een r e d uced t o s o m eth in g b are ly
aliv e. H is p ow ers g one, h is lif e a lm ost e x tin guis h ed , V old em ort h ad fle d ; th e
te rro r in w hic h th e s e cre t c o m munity o f w itc h es a n d w iz ard s h ad liv ed fo r s o
lo ng had lif te d , V old em ort's fo llo w ers had dis b an ded , an d H arry P otte r had
beco m e f a m ous.
It had been en ough of a sh ock fo r H arry to dis c o ver, on his ele v en th
bir th day, th at h e w as a w iz ard ; it h ad b een e v en m ore d is c o ncertin g to f in d o ut
th at e v ery one in th e h id den w iz ard in g w orld k new h is n am e. H arry h ad a rriv ed
at H ogw arts to fin d th at h ead s tu rn ed a n d w his p ers fo llo w ed h im w here v er h e
wen t. B ut h e w as u se d t o i t n ow : A t t h e e n d o f t h is s u m mer, h e w ould b e s ta rtin g
his fo urth y ear a t H ogw arts , a n d H arry w as a lr e ad y c o untin g th e d ay s u ntil h e
would b e b ack a t t h e c astle a g ain .
But th ere w as still a fo rtn ig ht to g o b efo re h e w en t b ack to sc h ool. H e
lo oked h opele ssly a ro und h is ro om a g ain , a n d h is e y e p au se d o n th e b ir th day
card s h is t w o b est f rie n ds h ad s e n t h im a t t h e e n d o f J u ly . W hat w ould t h ey s a y i f

Harry w ro te t o t h em a n d t o ld t h em a b out h is s c ar h urtin g?
At once, H erm io ne G ra n ger's voic e se em ed to fill his head , sh rill an d
pan ic k y.
“Y our sc ar hurt? Harry , th at's re ally se rio us… W rite to Pro fe sso r
Dum ble d ore ! And I'l l go an d ch eck Com mon M ag ic al Ailm en ts an d
Aff lic tio ns… M ay be t h ere 's s o m eth in g i n t h ere a b out c u rs e s c ars … ”
Yes, th at w ould b e H erm io ne's a d vic e: G o str a ig ht to th e h ead m aste r o f
Hogw arts , a n d in th e m ean tim e, c o nsu lt a b ook. H arry s ta re d o ut o f th e w in dow
at th e in ky b lu e-b la ck s k y. H e d oubte d v ery m uch w heth er a b ook c o uld h elp
him n ow . A s fa r a s h e k new , h e w as th e o nly liv in g p ers o n to h av e s u rv iv ed a
cu rs e lik e V old em ort's ; it w as h ig hly u nlik ely , th ere fo re , th at h e w ould fin d h is
sy m pto m s l is te d i n C om mon M ag ic al A ilm en ts a n d A ff lic tio ns. A s f o r i n fo rm in g
th e h ead m aste r, H arry h ad n o id ea w here D um ble d ore w en t d urin g th e s u m mer
holid ay s. H e a m use d h im se lf f o r a m om en t, p ic tu rin g D um ble d ore , w ith h is l o ng
silv er b eard , f u ll le n gth w iz ard 's r o bes, a n d p oin te d h at, s tr e tc h ed o ut o n a b each
so m ew here , ru bbin g su nta n lo tio n onto his lo ng cro oked nose . W here v er
Dum ble d ore w as, th ough, H arry w as su re th at H ed w ig w ould b e a b le to fin d
him ; H arry 's o w l h ad n ev er y et f a ile d to d eliv er a le tte r to a n yone, e v en w ith out
an a d dre ss. B ut w hat w ould h e w rite ?
Dear P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore , S orry to b oth er y ou, b ut m y sc ar h urt th is
morn in g. Y ours s in cere ly , H arry P otte r.
Even i n sid e h is h ead t h e w ord s s o unded s tu pid .
And s o h e tr ie d to im ag in e h is o th er b est frie n d, R on W easle y 's , re actio n,
an d in a m om en t, R on's r e d h air a n d lo ng-n ose d , f re ck le d f a ce s e em ed to s w im
befo re H arry , w earin g a b em use d e x pre ssio n.
“Y our s c ar h urt? B ut … but Y ou-K now -W ho c an 't b e n ear y ou n ow , c an h e?
I m ean … you'd k now , w ould n't y ou? H e'd b e tr y in g to d o y ou in a g ain , w ould n't
be? I d unno, H arry , m ay be c u rs e s c ars a lw ay s t w in ge a b it… I 'l l a sk D ad … ”
Mr. W easle y w as a fu lly q ualif ie d w iz ard w ho w ork ed in th e M is u se o f
Muggle A rtif a cts O ff ic e at th e M in is tr y of M ag ic , but he did n't hav e an y
partic u la r e x pertis e in th e m atte r o f c u rs e s, a s fa r a s H arry k new . In a n y c ase ,
Harry d id n't lik e th e id ea o f th e w hole W easle y fa m ily k now in g th at h e, H arry ,
was g ettin g ju m py a b out a f e w m om en ts ' p ain . M rs . W easle y w ould f u ss w ors e
th an H erm io ne, a n d F re d a n d G eo rg e, R on's s ix te en year- o ld t w in b ro th ers , m ig ht
th in k H arry w as lo sin g h is n erv e. T he W easle y s w ere H arry 's f a v orite f a m ily in
th e w orld ; h e w as h opin g th at th ey m ig ht in vite h im to s ta y a n y tim e n ow ( R on
had m en tio ned so m eth in g a b out th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up), a n d h e so m eh ow
did n't w an t h is v is it p unctu ate d w ith a n xio us i n quir ie s a b out h is s c ar.
Harry k nead ed h is f o re h ead w ith h is k nuck le s. W hat h e r e ally w an te d ( a n d

it f e lt a lm ost s h am efu l t o a d m it i t t o h im se lf ) w as s o m eo ne l ik e— so m eo ne l ik e a
pare n t: an ad ult w iz ard w hose ad vic e he co uld ask w ith out fe elin g stu pid ,
so m eo ne w ho c are d a b out h im , w ho h ad h ad e x perie n ce w ith D ark M ag ic …
And t h en t h e s o lu tio n c am e t o h im . I t w as s o s im ple , a n d s o o bvio us, t h at h e
co uld n't b elie v e i t h ad t a k en s o l o ng— Sir iu s.
Harry le ap t u p fro m th e b ed , h urrie d a cro ss th e ro om , a n d s a t d ow n a t h is
desk ; h e p ulle d a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t to w ard h im , lo ad ed h is e ag le -fe ath er q uill
with in k, w ro te D ear S ir iu s, th en p au se d , w onderin g h ow b est to p hra se h is
pro ble m , s till m arv elin g a t t h e f a ct t h at h e h ad n't t h ought o f S ir iu s s tr a ig ht a w ay.
But th en , p erh ap s it w asn 't s o s u rp ris in g— afte r a ll, h e h ad o nly fo und o ut th at
Sir iu s w as h is g odfa th er t w o m onth s a g o.
There w as a s im ple re aso n fo r S ir iu s's c o m ple te a b se n ce fro m H arry 's lif e
until th en — Sir iu s h ad b een in A zk ab an , th e te rrif y in g w iz ard ja il g uard ed b y
cre atu re s calle d dem en to rs , sig htle ss, so ul- s u ck in g fie n ds w ho had co m e to
se arc h f o r S ir iu s a t H ogw arts w hen h e h ad e sc ap ed . Y et S ir iu s h ad b een i n nocen t
—th e m urd ers fo r w hic h he had been co nvic te d had been co m mitte d by
Worm ta il, V old em ort's su pporte r, w hom n early e v ery body n ow b elie v ed d ead .
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne k new o th erw is e , h ow ev er; t h ey h ad c o m e f a ce-to -fa ce
with W orm ta il o nly th e p re v io us y ear, th ough o nly P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore h ad
belie v ed t h eir s to ry .
For o ne g lo rio us h our, H arry h ad b elie v ed th at h e w as le av in g th e D urs le y s
at la st, b ecau se S ir iu s h ad o ff e re d h im a h om e o nce h is n am e h ad b een c le are d .
But th e ch an ce had been sn atc h ed aw ay fro m him — Worm ta il had esc ap ed
befo re th ey c o uld ta k e h im to th e M in is tr y o f M ag ic , a n d S ir iu s h ad h ad to f le e
fo r h is lif e . H arry h ad h elp ed h im e sc ap e o n th e b ack o f a h ip pogrif f c alle d
Buck beak , a n d s in ce th en , S ir iu s h ad b een o n th e ru n. T he h om e H arry m ig ht
hav e h ad if W orm ta il h ad n ot e sc ap ed h ad b een h au ntin g h im a ll s u m mer. I t h ad
been doubly hard to re tu rn to th e D urs le y s know in g th at he had so nearly
esc ap ed t h em f o re v er.
Nev erth ele ss, S ir iu s h ad b een o f s o m e h elp to H arry , e v en if h e c o uld n't b e
with h im . It w as d ue to S ir iu s th at H arry n ow h ad a ll h is s c h ool th in gs in h is
bed ro om w ith h im . T he D urs le y s h ad n ev er a llo w ed th is b efo re ; th eir g en era l
wis h o f k eep in g H arry a s m is e ra b le a s p ossib le , c o uple d w ith th eir fe ar o f h is
pow ers , h ad le d th em to lo ck h is s c h ool tr u nk in th e c u pboard u nder th e s ta ir s
ev ery s u m mer p rio r to th is . B ut th eir a ttitu de h ad c h an ged s in ce th ey h ad f o und
out th at H arry had a dan gero us m urd ere r fo r a godfa th er— fo r H arry had
co nven ie n tly f o rg otte n t o t e ll t h em t h at S ir iu s w as i n nocen t.
Harry h ad r e ceiv ed tw o le tte rs f ro m S ir iu s s in ce h e h ad b een b ack a t P riv et
Driv e. B oth h ad b een d eliv ere d , n ot b y o w ls ( a s w as u su al w ith w iz ard s), b ut b y

la rg e, b rig htly c o lo re d tr o pic al b ir d s. H ed w ig h ad n ot a p pro ved o f th ese fla sh y
in tr u ders ; s h e h ad b een m ost r e lu cta n t t o a llo w t h em t o d rin k f ro m h er w ate r t r a y
befo re f ly in g o ff a g ain . H arry , o n t h e o th er h an d, h ad l ik ed t h em ; t h ey p ut h im i n
min d o f p alm tr e es a n d w hite sa n d, a n d h e h oped th at, w here v er S ir iu s w as
(S ir iu s n ev er s a id , in c ase th e le tte rs w ere in te rc ep te d ), h e w as e n jo yin g h im se lf .
Som eh ow , H arry f o und i t h ard t o i m ag in g d em en to rs s u rv iv in g f o r l o ng i n b rig ht
su nlig ht, p erh ap se th at w as w hy S ir iu s h ad g one S outh . S ir iu s's le tte rs , w hic h
were n ow h id den b en eath th e h ig hly u se fu l lo ose f lo orb oard s u nder H arry 's b ed ,
so unded c h earfu l, a n d in b oth o f th em h e h ad r e m in ded H arry to c all o n h im if
ev er H arry n eed ed t o . W ell, h e n eed ed t o r ig ht n ow , a ll r ig ht…
Harry 's la m p s e em ed to g ro w d im mer a s th e c o ld g ra y lig ht th at p re ced es
su nris e slo w ly c re p t in to th e ro om . F in ally , w hen th e su n h ad ris e n , w hen h is
bed ro om w alls h ad tu rn ed g old , a n d w hen s o unds o f m ovem en t c o uld b e h eard
fro m U ncle V ern on a n d A unt P etu nia 's r o om , H arry c le are d h is d esk o f c ru m ple d
pie ces o f p arc h m en t a n d r e re ad h is f in is h ed l e tte r.
Dear S ir iu s,
Than ks fo r y our la st le tte r. T hat b ir d w as e n orm ous; it c o uld h ard ly g et
th ro ugh m y w in dow . T hin gs a re th e s a m e a s u su al h ere . D udle y 's d ie t i s n 't g oin g
to o w ell. M y au nt fo und h im sm ugglin g d oughnuts in to h is ro om y este rd ay.
They t o ld h im t h ey 'd h av e t o c u t h is p ock et m oney i f h e k eep s d oin g i t, s o h e g ot
re ally a n gry a n d c h uck ed h is P la y S ta tio n o ut o f th e w in dow . T hat's a so rt o f
co m pute r th in g y ou c an p la y g am es o n. B it s tu pid r e ally , n ow h e h asn 't e v en g ot
Meg a-M utila tio n P art T hre e t o t a k e h is m in d o ff t h in gs.
I'm o kay, m ain ly b ecau se th e D urs le y s a re te rrif ie d y ou m ig ht tu rn u p a n d
tu rn t h em a ll i n to b ats i f I a sk y ou t o .
A w eir d t h in g h ap pen ed t h is m orn in g, t h ough. M y s c ar h urt a g ain . L ast t im e
th at h ap pen ed it w as b ecau se V old em ort w as a t H ogw arts . B ut I d on't r e ck on h e
can b e a n yw here n ear m e n ow , c an h e? D o y ou k now if c u rs e s c ars s o m etim es
hurt y ears a fte rw ard ?
I'l l se n d th is w ith H ed w ig w hen sh e g ets b ack ; sh e's o ff h untin g at th e
mom en t. S ay h ello t o B uck beak f o r m e. H arry
Yes, th ought H arry , th at lo oked a ll r ig ht. T here w as n o p oin t p uttin g in th e
dre am ; h e d id n't w an t it to lo ok a s th ough h e w as to o w orrie d . H e f o ld ed u p th e
parc h m en t a n d la id it a sid e o n h is d esk , r e ad y f o r w hen H ed w ig r e tu rn ed . T hen
he got to his fe et, str e tc h ed , an d open ed his w ard ro be once m ore . W ith out
gla n cin g at his re fle ctio n he sta rte d to get dre sse d befo re goin g dow n to
bre ak fa st.

C H APT ER T H REE
T H E I N VIT A T IO N
By th e tim e H arry a rriv ed in th e k itc h en , th e th re e D urs le y s w ere a lr e ad y
s e ate d a ro und th e ta b le . N one o f th em lo oked u p a s h e e n te re d o r sa t d ow n.
U ncle V ern on's la rg e r e d f a ce w as h id den b eh in d th e m orn in g's D aily M ail, a n d
A unt P etu nia w as c u ttin g a g ra p efru it in to q uarte rs , h er lip s p urs e d o ver h er
h ors e lik e t e eth .
Dudle y lo oked fu rio us a n d su lk y, a n d so m eh ow se em ed to b e ta k in g u p
e v en m ore s p ace t h an u su al. T his w as s a y in g s o m eth in g, a s h e a lw ay s t o ok u p a n
e n tir e s id e o f th e s q uare ta b le b y h im se lf . W hen A unt P etu nia p ut a q uarte r o f
u nsw eete n ed g ra p efru it o nto D udle y 's p la te w ith a tr e m ulo us “ T here y ou a re ,
D id dy d arlin g,” D udle y g lo w ere d a t h er. H is lif e h ad ta k en a m ost u nple asa n t
t u rn s in ce h e h ad c o m e h om e f o r t h e s u m mer w ith h is e n d-o f-y ear r e p ort.
Uncle V ern on a n d A unt P etu nia h ad m an ag ed to fin d e x cu se s fo r h is b ad
m ark s a s u su al: A unt P etu nia a lw ay s in sis te d th at D udle y w as a v ery g if te d b oy
w hose te ach ers d id n't u nders ta n d h im , w hile U ncle V ern on m ain ta in ed th at “ h e
d id n't w an t s o m e s w otty little n an cy b oy fo r a s o n a n yw ay.” T hey a ls o s k ate d
o ver th e a ccu sa tio ns o f b ully in g in th e r e p ort— ”H e's a b ois te ro us little b oy, b ut
h e w ould n't h urt a f ly !” A unt P etu nia h ad s a id t e arfu lly .
How ev er, at th e botto m of th e re p ort th ere w ere a fe w w ell- c h ose n
c o m men ts fro m th e s c h ool n urs e th at n ot e v en U ncle V ern on a n d A unt P etu nia
c o uld e x pla in a w ay. N o m atte r h ow m uch A unt P etu nia w aile d th at D udle y w as
b ig -b oned , an d th at his poundag e w as re ally puppy fa t, an d th at he w as a
g ro w in g b oy w ho n eed ed p le n ty o f fo od, th e fa ct re m ain ed th at th e sc h ool
o utf itte rs d id n't s to ck k nic k erb ock ers b ig e n ough fo r h im a n ym ore . T he s c h ool
n urs e h ad se en w hat A unt P etu nia 's e y es— so sh arp w hen it c am e to sp ottin g
f in gerp rin ts o n h er g le am in g w alls , a n d in o bse rv in g th e c o m in gs a n d g oin gs o f
t h e n eig hbors — sim ply re fu se d to s e e: th at fa r fro m n eed in g e x tr a n ouris h m en t,
D udle y h ad r e ach ed r o ughly t h e s iz e a n d w eig ht o f a y oung k ille r w hale .
So— afte r m an y ta n tr u m s, afte r arg um en ts th at sh ook H arry 's bed ro om
f lo or, a n d m an y te ars fro m A unt P etu nia — th e n ew re g im e h ad b eg un. T he d ie t
s h eet th at h ad b een se n t b y th e S m eltin gs sc h ool n urs e h ad b een ta p ed to th e
f rid ge, w hic h h ad b een e m ptie d o f a ll D udle y 's f a v orite t h in gs— fiz zy d rin ks a n d
c ak es, c h oco la te b ars a n d b urg ers a n d f ille d i n ste ad w ith f ru it a n d v eg eta b le s a n d
t h e s o rts o f th in gs th at U ncle V ern on c alle d “ ra b bit f o od.” T o m ak e D udle y f e el
b ette r a b out i t a ll, A unt P etu nia h ad i n sis te d t h at t h e w hole f a m ily f o llo w t h e d ie t

to o. S he n ow p asse d a g ra p efru it q uarte r to H arry . H e n otic ed th at it w as a lo t
sm alle r th an D udle y 's . A unt P etu nia s e em ed to f e et th at th e b est w ay to k eep u p
Dudle y 's m ora le w as to m ak e su re th at h e d id , a t le ast, g et m ore to e at th an
Harry .
But A unt P etu nia d id n't k now w hat w as h id den u nder th e lo ose f lo orb oard
upsta ir s . S he h ad n o id ea th at H arry w as n ot fo llo w in g th e d ie t at all. T he
mom en t h e h ad g ot w in d o f th e f a ct th at h e w as e x pecte d to s u rv iv e th e s u m mer
on c arro t s tic k s, H arry h ad s e n t H ed w ig to h is frie n ds w ith p le as fo r h elp , a n d
th ey had ris e n to th e occasio n m ag nif ic en tly . H ed w ig had re tu rn ed fro m
Herm io ne's h ouse w ith a la rg e b ox s tu ff e d f u ll o f s u gar- fre e s n ack s. ( H erm io ne's
pare n ts w ere d en tis ts .) H ag rid , th e H ogw arts g am ek eep er, h ad o blig ed w ith a
sa ck f u ll o f h is o w n h om em ad e r o ck c ak es. ( H arry h ad n't to uch ed th ese ; h e h ad
had to o m uch e x perie n ce o f H ag rid 's c o okin g.) M rs . W easle y, h ow ev er, h ad s e n t
th e f a m ily o w l, E rro l, w ith a n e n orm ous f ru itc ak e a n d a sso rte d m eat p ie s. P oor
Erro l, w ho w as e ld erly a n d fe eb le , h ad n eed ed a fu ll fiv e d ay s to re co ver fro m
th e jo urn ey. A nd th en o n H arry 's b ir th day (w hic h th e D urs le y s h ad c o m ple te ly
ig nore d ) he had re ceiv ed fo ur su perb bir th day cak es, one each fro m R on,
Herm io ne, H ag rid , a n d S ir iu s. H arry s till h ad tw o o f th em le ft, a n d s o , lo okin g
fo rw ard to a re al b re ak fa st w hen h e g ot b ack u psta ir s , h e ate h is g ra p efru it
with out c o m pla in t.
Uncle V ern on la id asid e h is p ap er w ith a d eep sn if f o f d is a p pro val an d
lo oked d ow n a t h is o w n g ra p efru it q uarte r.
“Is t h is i t? ” h e s a id g ru m pily t o A unt P etu nia .
Aunt P etu nia g av e h im a s e v ere l o ok, a n d t h en n odded p oin te d ly a t D udle y,
who h ad a lr e ad y f in is h ed h is o w n g ra p efru it q uarte r a n d w as e y ein g H arry 's w ith
a v ery s o ur l o ok i n h is p ig gy l ittle e y es.
Uncle V ern on g av e a g re at s ig h, w hic h ru ff le d h is la rg e, b ush y m usta ch e,
an d p ic k ed u p h is s p oon.
The d oorb ell r a n g. U ncle V ern on h eav ed h im se lf o ut o f h is c h air a n d s e t o ff
dow n th e h all. Q uic k a s a f la sh , w hile h is m oth er w as o ccu pie d w ith th e k ettle ,
Dudle y s to le t h e r e st o f U ncle V ern on's g ra p efru it.
Harry h eard ta lk in g a t th e d oor, a n d s o m eo ne la u ghin g, a n d U ncle V ern on
an sw erin g c u rtly . T hen th e fro nt d oor c lo se d , a n d th e so und o f rip pin g p ap er
cam e f ro m t h e h all.
Aunt P etu nia s e t th e te ap ot d ow n o n th e ta b le a n d lo oked c u rio usly a ro und
to s e e w here U ncle V ern on h ad g ot to . S he d id n't h av e to w ait lo ng to f in d o ut;
afte r a b out a m in ute , h e w as b ack . H e l o oked l iv id .
“Y ou,” h e b ark ed a t H arry . “ In t h e l iv in g r o om . N ow .”
Bew ild ere d , w onderin g w hat o n e arth h e w as s u ppose d to h av e d one th is

tim e, H arry g ot u p a n d fo llo w ed U ncle V ern on o ut o f th e k itc h en a n d in to th e
nex t r o om . U ncle V ern on c lo se d t h e d oor s h arp ly b eh in d b oth o f t h em .
“S o,” h e s a id , m arc h in g o ver to th e fir e p la ce a n d tu rn in g to fa ce H arry a s
th ough h e w ere a b out t o p ro nounce h im u nder a rre st. “ S o.”
Harry w ould h av e d early lo ved to h av e s a id , “ S o w hat? ” b ut h e d id n't f e el
th at U ncle V ern on's te m per s h ould b e te ste d th is e arly in th e m orn in g, e sp ecia lly
when it w as a lr e ad y u nder s e v ere s tr a in f ro m la ck o f f o od. H e th ere fo re s e ttle d
fo r l o okin g p olite ly p uzzle d .
“T his ju st a rriv ed ,” sa id U ncle V ern on. H e b ra n dis h ed a p ie ce o f p urp le
writin g p ap er a t H arry . “ A l e tte r. A bout y ou.”
Harry 's c o nfu sio n in cre ase d . W ho w ould b e w ritin g to U ncle V ern on a b out
him ? W ho d id h e k now w ho s e n t l e tte rs b y t h e p ostm an ?
Uncle V ern on g la re d a t H arry , th en lo oked d ow n a t th e le tte r a n d b eg an to
re ad a lo ud:
Dear M r. a n d M rs . D urs le y,
We h av e n ev er b een in tr o duced , b ut I a m s u re y ou h av e h eard a g re at d eal
fro m H arry a b out m y s o n R on.
As H arry m ig ht h av e to ld y ou, th e f in al o f th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up ta k es
pla ce t h is M onday n ig ht, a n d m y h usb an d, A rth ur, h as j u st m an ag ed t o g et p rim e
tic k ets t h ro ugh h is c o nnectio ns a t t h e D ep artm en t o f M ag ic al G am es a n d S ports .
I d o h ope y ou w ill a llo w u s to ta k e H arry to th e m atc h , a s th is re ally is a
once-in -a -lif e tim e o pportu nity ; B rita in h asn 't h oste d th e c u p f o r th ir ty y ears , a n d
tic k ets a re e x tr e m ely h ard t o c o m e b y. W e w ould o f c o urs e b e g la d t o h av e H arry
sta y fo r th e re m ain der o f th e s u m mer h olid ay s, a n d to s e e h im s a fe ly o nto th e
tr a in b ack t o s c h ool.
It w ould b e b est f o r H arry to s e n d u s y our a n sw er a s q uic k ly a s p ossib le in
th e n orm al w ay, b ecau se th e M uggle p ostm an h as n ev er d eliv ere d to o ur h ouse ,
an d I a m n ot s u re h e e v en k now s w here i t i s .
Hopin g t o s e e H arry s o on,
Yours s in cere ly ,
Molly W easle y
P. S . I d o h ope w e'v e p ut e n ough s ta m ps o n.
Uncle V ern on f in is h ed r e ad in g, p ut h is h an d b ack i n to h is b re ast p ock et, a n d
dre w o ut s o m eth in g e ls e .
“L ook a t t h is ,” h e g ro w le d .
He h eld u p th e en velo pe in w hic h M rs . W easle y 's le tte r h ad co m e, an d
Harry h ad t o f ig ht d ow n a l a u gh. E very b it o f i t w as c o vere d i n s ta m ps e x cep t f o r
a s q uare in ch o n th e f ro nt, in to w hic h M rs . W easle y h ad s q ueezed th e D urs le y s'
ad dre ss i n m in ute w ritin g.

“S he d id p ut e n ough s ta m ps o n, t h en ,” s a id H arry , t r y in g t o s o und a s t h ough
Mrs . W easle y 's w as a m is ta k e a n yone c o uld m ak e. H is u ncle 's e y es f la sh ed .
“T he p ostm an n otic ed ,” h e sa id th ro ugh g ritte d te eth . “ V ery in te re ste d to
know w here th is le tte r c am e fro m , h e w as. T hat's w hy h e ra n g th e d oorb ell.
Seem ed t o t h in k i t w as f u nny.”
Harry d id n't s a y a n yth in g. O th er p eo ple m ig ht n ot u nders ta n d w hy U ncle
Vern on w as m ak in g a f u ss a b out to o m an y s ta m ps, b ut H arry h ad liv ed w ith th e
Durs le y s to o lo ng n ot to k now h ow to uch y th ey w ere ab out an yth in g ev en
slig htly o ut o f th e o rd in ary . T heir w ors t fe ar w as th at s o m eo ne w ould fin d o ut
th at t h ey w ere c o nnecte d ( h ow ev er d is ta n tly ) w ith p eo ple l ik e M rs . W easle y.
Uncle V ern on w as s till g la rin g a t H arry , w ho tr ie d to k eep h is e x pre ssio n
neu tr a l. I f h e d id n't d o o r s a y a n yth in g s tu pid , h e m ig ht ju st b e in f o r th e tr e at o f
a lif e tim e. H e w aite d fo r U ncle V ern on to sa y so m eth in g, but he m ere ly
co ntin ued t o g la re . H arry d ecid ed t o b re ak t h e s ile n ce.
“S o— can I g o t h en ?” h e a sk ed .
A slig ht sp asm cro sse d U ncle V ern on's la rg e p urp le fa ce. T he m usta ch e
bris tle d . H arry th ought h e k new w hat w as g oin g o n b eh in d th e m usta ch e: a
fu rio us b attle a s tw o o f U ncle V ern on's m ost fu ndam en ta l in stin cts c am e in to
co nflic t. A llo w in g H arry to go w ould m ak e H arry hap py, so m eth in g U ncle
Vern on h ad str u ggle d a g ain st fo r th ir te en y ears . O n th e o th er h an d, a llo w in g
Harry to d is a p pear to th e W easle y s' f o r th e r e st o f th e s u m mer w ould g et r id o f
him tw o w eek s e arlie r th an a n yone c o uld h av e h oped , a n d U ncle V ern on h ate d
hav in g H arry in th e h ouse . T o g iv e h im se lf th in kin g tim e, it s e em ed , h e lo oked
dow n a t M rs . W easle y 's l e tte r a g ain .
“W ho i s t h is w om an ?” h e s a id , s ta rin g a t t h e s ig natu re w ith d is ta ste .
“Y ou'v e se en h er,” sa id H arry . “S he's m y frie n d R on's m oth er, sh e w as
meetin g h im o ff t h e H og— off t h e s c h ool t r a in a t t h e e n d o f l a st t e rm .”
He h ad a lm ost s a id “ H ogw arts E xpre ss,” a n d th at w as a s u re w ay to g et h is
uncle 's te m per u p. N obody e v er m en tio ned th e n am e o f H arry 's s c h ool a lo ud in
th e D urs le y h ouse h old .
Uncle V ern on s c re w ed u p h is e n orm ous f a ce a s th ough tr y in g to r e m em ber
so m eth in g v ery u nple asa n t.
“D um py s o rt o f w om an ?” h e g ro w le d fin ally . “ L oad o f c h ild re n w ith re d
hair ? ”
Harry f ro w ned . H e th ought it w as a b it r ic h o f U ncle V ern on to c all a n yone
“d um py,” w hen his ow n so n, D udle y, had fin ally ach ie v ed w hat he'd been
th re ate n in g t o d o s in ce t h e a g e o f t h re e, a n d b eco m e w id er t h an h e w as t a ll.
Uncle V ern on w as p eru sin g t h e l e tte r a g ain .
“Q uid ditc h ,” he m utte re d under his bre ath . “Q uid ditc h — what is th is

ru bbis h ?”
Harry f e lt a s e co nd s ta b o f a n noyan ce.
“It's a s p ort,” h e s a id s h ortly . “ P la y ed o n b ro om – “
“A ll rig ht, all rig ht! ” sa id U ncle V ern on lo udly . H arry sa w , w ith so m e
sa tis fa ctio n, th at his uncle lo oked vag uely pan ic k y. A ppare n tly his nerv es
co uld n't s ta n d th e s o und o f th e w ord “ b ro om stic k s” in h is liv in g r o om . H e to ok
re fu ge in p eru sin g th e le tte r a g ain . H arry s a w h is lip s fo rm th e w ord s “ se n d u s
your a n sw er … in t h e n orm al w ay.” H e s c o w le d .
“W hat d oes s h e m ean , 't h e n orm al w ay '? ” h e s p at.
“N orm al f o r u s,” s a id H arry , a n d b efo re h is u ncle c o uld s to p h im , h e a d ded ,
“y ou k now , o w l p ost. T hat's w hat's n orm al f o r w iz ard s.”
Uncle V ern on lo oked a s o utr a g ed a s if H arry h ad ju st u tte re d a d is g ustin g
sw earw ord . S hak in g w ith a n ger, h e s h ot a n erv ous lo ok th ro ugh th e w in dow , a s
th ough e x pectin g t o s e e s o m e o f t h e n eig hbors w ith t h eir e ars p re sse d a g ain st t h e
gla ss.
“H ow m an y tim es d o I h av e to te ll y ou n ot to m en tio n th at u nnatu ra ln ess
under m y r o of? ” h e h is se d , h is f a ce n ow a r ic h p lu m c o lo r. “ Y ou s ta n d th ere , in
th e c lo th es P etu nia a n d I h av e p ut o n y our u ngra te fu l b ack — ”
“O nly a fte r D udle y f in is h ed w ith th em ,” s a id H arry c o ld ly , a n d in deed , h e
was d re sse d in a sw eats h ir t so la rg e fo r h im th at h e h ad h ad to ro ll b ack th e
sle ev es f iv e t im es s o a s t o b e a b le t o u se h is h an ds, a n d w hic h f e ll p ast t h e k nees
of h is e x tr e m ely b ag gy j e an s.
“I w ill n ot b e s p oken t o l ik e t h at! ” s a id U ncle V ern on, t r e m blin g w ith r a g e.
But H arry w asn 't g oin g to s ta n d f o r th is . G one w ere th e d ay s w hen h e h ad
been fo rc ed to ta k e e v ery sin gle o ne o f th e D urs le y s' stu pid ru le s. H e w asn 't
fo llo w in g D udle y 's d ie t, a n d h e w asn 't g oin g to le t U ncle V ern on s to p h im f ro m
goin g to th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, n ot if h e c o uld h elp it. H arry to ok a d eep ,
ste ad yin g b re ath a n d th en s a id , “ O kay, I c an 't s e e th e W orld C up. C an I g o n ow ,
th en ? O nly I 'v e g ot a l e tte r t o S ir iu s I w an t t o f in is h . Y ou k now — my g odfa th er.”
He h ad d one it, h e h ad s a id th e m ag ic w ord s. N ow h e w atc h ed th e p urp le
re ced e b lo tc h ily fro m U ncle V ern on's fa ce, m ak in g it lo ok lik e b ad ly m ix ed
bla ck c u rra n t i c e c re am .
“Y ou'r e — you'r e w ritin g t o h im , a re y ou?” s a id U ncle V ern on, i n a w ould -b e
calm v oic e— but H arry h ad s e en th e p upils o f h is tin y e y es c o ntr a ct w ith s u dden
fe ar.
“W ell— yeah ,” s a id H arry , c asu ally . “ It's b een a w hile s in ce h e h eard f ro m
me, a n d, y ou k now , i f h e d oesn 't h e m ig ht s ta rt t h in kin g s o m eth in g's w ro ng.”
He s to pped t h ere t o e n jo y t h e e ff e ct o f t h ese w ord s. H e c o uld a lm ost s e e t h e
co gs w ork in g u nder U ncle V ern on's th ic k , d ark , n eatly p arte d h air. I f h e tr ie d to

sto p H arry w ritin g to S ir iu s, S ir iu s w ould th in k H arry w as b ein g m is tr e ate d . If
he t o ld H arry h e c o uld n't g o t o t h e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, H arry w ould w rite a n d
te ll S ir iu s, w ho w ould k now H arry w as b ein g m is tr e ate d . T here w as o nly o ne
th in g fo r U ncle V ern on to d o. H arry c o uld se e th e c o nclu sio n fo rm in g in h is
uncle 's m in d a s th ough th e g re at m usta ch ed fa ce w ere tr a n sp are n t. H arry tr ie d
not t o s m ile , t o k eep h is o w n f a ce a s b la n k a s p ossib le . A nd t h en —
“W ell, a ll rig ht th en . Y ou c an g o to th is ru ddy … th is s tu pid … th is W orld
Cup th in g. Y ou w rite an d te ll th ese — th ese W easle y s th ey 'r e to p ic k y ou u p,
min d. I h av en 't g ot t im e t o g o d ro ppin g y ou o ff a ll o ver t h e c o untr y . A nd y ou c an
sp en d t h e r e st o f t h e s u m mer t h ere . A nd y ou c an t e ll y our— your g odfa th er … te ll
him … te ll h im y ou'r e g oin g.”
“O kay t h en ,” s a id H arry b rig htly .
He tu rn ed a n d w alk ed to w ard th e liv in g ro om d oor, fig htin g th e u rg e to
ju m p in to th e a ir a n d w hoop. H e w as g oin g … he w as g oin g to th e W easle y s', h e
was g oin g t o w atc h t h e Q uid ditc h W orld C up!
Outs id e in th e h all h e n early r a n in to D udle y, w ho h ad b een lu rk in g b eh in d
th e d oor, c le arly h opin g to o verh ear H arry b ein g to ld o ff . H e lo oked s h ock ed to
se e t h e b ro ad g rin o n H arry 's f a ce.
“T hat w as a n e x celle n t b re ak fa st, w asn 't it? ” s a id H arry . “ I f e el r e ally f u ll,
don't y ou?”
Lau ghin g a t th e a sto nis h ed lo ok o n D udle y 's fa ce, H arry to ok th e sta ir s
th re e a t a t im e, a n d h urle d h im se lf b ack i n to h is b ed ro om .
The fir s t th in g h e s a w w as th at H ed w ig w as b ack . S he w as s ittin g in h er
cag e, s ta rin g a t H arry w ith h er e n orm ous a m ber e y es, a n d c lic k in g h er b eak in
th e w ay th at m ean t sh e w as an noyed ab out so m eth in g. E xactly w hat w as
an noyin g h er b ecam e a p pare n t a lm ost a t o nce.
“O UCH !” s a id H arry a s w hat a p peare d to b e a s m all, g ra y, f e ath ery te n nis
ball co llid ed w ith th e sid e of his head . H arry m assa g ed th e sp ot fu rio usly ,
lo okin g u p to s e e w hat h ad h it h im , a n d s a w a m in ute o w l, s m all e n ough to fit
in to th e p alm o f h is h an d, w hiz zin g ex cite d ly aro und th e ro om lik e a lo ose
fir e w ork . H arry th en r e aliz ed th at th e o w l h ad d ro pped a le tte r a t h is f e et. H arry
ben t d ow n, re co gniz ed R on's h an dw ritin g, th en to re o pen th e e n velo pe. In sid e
was a h astily s c rib ble d n ote .
Harry — DAD G OT T H E T IC K ETS— Ire la n d vers u s B ulg aria , M onday
nig ht. M um 's w ritin g t o t h e M uggle s t o a sk y ou t o s ta y. T hey m ig ht a lr e ad y h av e
th e le tte r, I d on't k now h ow f a st M uggle p ost is . T hought I 'd s e n d th is w ith P ig
an yw ay.
Harry s ta re d a t t h e w ord “ P ig ,” t h en l o oked u p a t t h e t in y o w l n ow z o om in g
aro und th e lig ht fix tu re o n th e c eilin g. H e h ad n ev er s e en a n yth in g th at lo oked

le ss l ik e a p ig . M ay be h e c o uld n't r e ad R on's w ritin g. H e w en t b ack t o t h e l e tte r:
We'r e c o m in g f o r y ou w heth er t h e M uggle s l ik e i t o r n ot, y ou c an 't m is s t h e
World C up, o nly M um a n d D ad re ck on it's b ette r if w e p re te n d to a sk th eir
perm is sio n fir s t. If th ey sa y y es, se n d P ig b ack w ith y our a n sw er p ro nto , a n d
we'l l c o m e a n d g et y ou a t f iv e o 'c lo ck o n S unday. I f th ey s a y n o, s e n d P ig b ack
pro nto a n d w e'l l c o m e a n d g et y ou a t f iv e o 'c lo ck o n S unday a n yw ay.
Herm io ne's a rriv in g th is a fte rn oon. P erc y 's s ta rte d w ork — th e D ep artm en t
of In te rn atio nal M ag ic al C oopera tio n. D on't m en tio n an yth in g ab out A bro ad
while y ou'r e h ere u nle ss y ou w an t t h e p an ts b ore d o ff y ou.
See y ou s o on— Ron
“C alm dow n!” H arry sa id as th e sm all ow l fle w lo w over his head ,
tw itte rin g m ad ly w ith w hat H arry co uld only assu m e w as prid e at hav in g
deliv ere d th e le tte r to th e rig ht p ers o n. “C om e h ere , I n eed y ou to ta k e m y
an sw er b ack !”
The o w l f lu tte re d d ow n o n to p o f H ed w ig 's c ag e. H ed w ig lo oked c o ld ly u p
at i t, a s t h ough d arin g i t t o t r y a n d c o m e a n y c lo se r.
Harry se iz ed h is e ag le -fe ath er q uill o nce m ore , g ra b bed a fre sh p ie ce o f
parc h m en t, a n d w ro te :
Ron, it's all okay, th e M uggle s sa y I can co m e. S ee you fiv e o'c lo ck
to m orro w . C an 't w ait. H arry
He f o ld ed t h is n ote u p v ery s m all, a n d w ith i m men se d if f ic u lty , t ie d i t t o t h e
tin y o w l's le g a s it h opped o n th e s p ot w ith e x cite m en t. T he m om en t th e n ote
was s e cu re , t h e o w l w as o ff a g ain ; i t z o om ed o ut o f t h e w in dow a n d o ut o f s ig ht.
Harry t u rn ed t o H ed w ig .
“F eelin g u p t o a l o ng j o urn ey ?” h e a sk ed h er.
Hed w ig h oote d i n a d ig nif ie d s o rt o f a w ay.
“C an y ou ta k e th is to S ir iu s f o r m e?” h e s a id , p ic k in g u p h is le tte r. “ H an g
on … I j u st w an t t o f in is h i t.”
He u nfo ld ed t h e p arc h m en t a n d h astily a d ded a p osts c rip t.
If y ou w an t to c o nta ct m e, I 'l l b e a t m y f rie n d R on W easle y 's f o r th e r e st o f
th e s u m mer. H is d ad 's g ot u s t ic k ets f o r t h e Q uid ditc h W orld C up!
The le tte r fin is h ed , h e tie d it to H ed w ig 's le g ; s h e k ep t u nusu ally s till, a s
th ough d ete rm in ed t o s h ow h im h ow a r e al p ost o w l s h ould b eh av e.
“I'l l b e a t R on's w hen y ou g et b ack , a ll r ig ht? ” H arry t o ld h er.
She n ip ped h is fin ger aff e ctio nate ly , th en , w ith a so ft sw oosh in g n ois e ,
sp re ad h er e n orm ous w in gs a n d s o are d o ut o f t h e o pen w in dow .
Harry w atc h ed h er o ut o f s ig ht, th en c ra w le d u nder h is b ed , w re n ch ed u p
th e lo ose f lo orb oard , a n d p ulle d o ut a la rg e c h unk o f b ir th day c ak e. H e s a t th ere
on th e f lo or e atin g it, s a v orin g th e h ap pin ess th at w as f lo odin g th ro ugh h im . H e

had c ak e, a n d D udle y h ad n oth in g b ut g ra p efru it; it w as a b rig ht s u m mer's d ay,
he w ould b e le av in g P riv et D riv e to m orro w , h is s c ar f e lt p erfe ctly n orm al a g ain ,
an d h e w as g oin g to w atc h th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up. It w as h ard , ju st n ow , to
fe el w orrie d a b out a n yth in g— ev en L ord V old em ort.

C H APT ER F O UR
B A CK T O T H E B U RRO W
By tw elv e o 'c lo ck th e n ex t d ay, H arry 's s c h ool tr u nk w as p ack ed w ith h is
s c h ool th in gs a n d a ll h is m ost p riz ed p osse ssio ns— th e I n vis ib ility C lo ak h e h ad
i n herite d fro m his fa th er, th e bro om stic k he had gotte n fro m Sir iu s, th e
e n ch an te d m ap o f H ogw arts h e h ad b een g iv en b y F re d a n d G eo rg e W easle y l a st
y ear. H e h ad e m ptie d h is h id in g p la ce u nder th e lo ose flo orb oard o f a ll fo od,
d ouble -c h eck ed e v ery n ook a n d c ra n ny o f h is b ed ro om f o r f o rg otte n s p ellb ooks
o r q uills , an d ta k en d ow n th e ch art o n th e w all co untin g d ow n th e d ay s to
S ep te m ber th e f ir s t, o n w hic h h e lik ed to c ro ss o ff th e d ay s r e m ain in g u ntil h is
r e tu rn t o H ogw arts .
The a tm osp here in sid e n um ber f o ur, P riv et D riv e w as e x tr e m ely te n se . T he
i m min en t arriv al at th eir h ouse o f an asso rtm en t o f w iz ard s w as m ak in g th e
D urs le y s u ptig ht an d ir rita b le . U ncle V ern on h ad lo oked d ow nrig ht ala rm ed
w hen H arry i n fo rm ed h im t h at t h e W easle y s w ould b e a rriv in g a t f iv e o 'c lo ck t h e
v ery n ex t d ay.
“I h ope y ou to ld th em to d re ss p ro perly , th ese p eo ple ,” h e s n arle d a t o nce.
“ I'v e s e en th e s o rt o f s tu ff y our lo t w ear. T hey 'd b ette r h av e th e d ecen cy to p ut
o n n orm al c lo th es, t h at's a ll.”
Harry fe lt a slig ht se n se o f fo re b odin g. H e h ad ra re ly se en M r. o r M rs .
W easle y w earin g a n yth in g t h at t h e D urs le y s w ould c all “ n orm al.” T heir c h ild re n
m ig ht d on M uggle clo th in g d urin g th e h olid ay s, b ut M r. an d M rs . W easle y
u su ally w ore lo ng ro bes in v ary in g s ta te s o f s h ab bin ess. H arry w asn 't b oth ere d
a b out w hat th e n eig hbors w ould th in k, b ut h e w as a n xio us a b out h ow ru de th e
D urs le y s m ig ht b e t o t h e W easle y s i f t h ey t u rn ed u p l o okin g l ik e t h eir w ors t i d ea
o f w iz ard s.
Uncle V ern on h ad p ut o n h is b est su it. T o so m e p eo ple , th is m ig ht h av e
l o oked lik e a g estu re o f w elc o m e, b ut H arry k new it w as b ecau se U ncle V ern on
w an te d to lo ok im pre ssiv e a n d in tim id atin g. D udle y, o n th e o th er h an d, lo oked
s o m eh ow d im in is h ed . T his w as n ot b ecau se t h e d ie t w as a t l a st t a k in g e ff e ct, b ut
d ue to frig ht. D udle y h ad e m erg ed fro m h is la st e n co unte r w ith a fu lly g ro w n
w iz ard w ith a c u rly p ig 's ta il p okin g o ut o f th e se at o f h is tr o use rs , a n d A unt
P etu nia a n d U ncle V ern on h ad h ad to p ay f o r its r e m oval a t a p riv ate h osp ita l in
L ondon. It w asn 't a lto geth er s u rp ris in g, th ere fo re , th at D udle y k ep t ru nnin g h is
h an d n erv ously o ver h is b ack sid e, a n d w alk in g s id ew ay s f ro m r o om to r o om , s o
a s n ot t o p re se n t t h e s a m e t a rg et t o t h e e n em y.

Lunch w as a n a lm ost sile n t m eal. D udle y d id n't e v en p ro te st a t th e fo od
(c o tta g e c h eese a n d g ra te d c ele ry ). A unt P etu nia w asn 't , e atin g a n yth in g a t a ll.
Her a rm s w ere f o ld ed , h er lip s w ere p urs e d , a n d s h e s e em ed to b e c h ew in g h er
to ngue, a s t h ough b itin g b ack t h e f u rio us d ia tr ib e s h e l o nged t o t h ro w a t H arry .
“T hey 'l l b e d riv in g, o f c o urs e ?” U ncle V ern on b ark ed a cro ss t h e t a b le .
“E r,” s a id H arry .
He h ad n't th ought o f th at. H ow w ere th e W easle y s g oin g to p ic k h im u p?
They d id n't h av e a c ar a n ym ore ; th e o ld F ord A nglia th ey h ad o nce o w ned w as
cu rre n tly ru nnin g w ild in th e F orb id den F ore st a t H ogw arts . B ut M r. W easle y
had b orro w ed a M in is tr y o f M ag ic c ar la st y ear; p ossib ly h e w ould d o th e s a m e
to day ?
“I t h in k s o ,” s a id H arry .
Uncle V ern on sn orte d in to h is m usta ch e. N orm ally , U ncle V ern on w ould
hav e a sk ed w hat c ar M r. W easle y d ro ve; h e te n ded to ju dge o th er m en b y h ow
big a n d e x pen siv e th eir c ars w ere . B ut H arry d oubte d w heth er U ncle V ern on
would h av e t a k en t o M r. W easle y e v en i f h e d ro ve a F erra ri.
Harry sp en t m ost of th e afte rn oon in his bed ro om ; he co uld n't sta n d
watc h in g A unt P etu nia p eer o ut th ro ugh th e n et c u rta in s e v ery fe w s e co nds, a s
th ough th ere h ad b een a w arn in g ab out an esc ap ed rh in ocero s. F in ally , at a
quarte r t o f iv e, H arry w en t b ack d ow nsta ir s a n d i n to t h e l iv in g r o om .
Aunt P etu nia w as c o m puls iv ely s tr a ig hte n in g c u sh io ns. U ncle V ern on w as
pre te n din g to r e ad th e p ap er, b ut h is tin y e y es w ere n ot m ovin g, a n d H arry w as
su re h e w as re ally lis te n in g w ith a ll h is m ig ht fo r th e s o und o f a n a p pro ach in g
car. D udle y w as cra m med in to an arm ch air , his pork y han ds ben eath him ,
cla m ped fir m ly a ro und h is b otto m . H arry c o uld n't ta k e th e te n sio n; h e le ft th e
ro om a n d w en t a n d s a t o n th e s ta ir s in th e h all, h is e y es o n h is w atc h a n d h is
heart p um pin g f a st f ro m e x cite m en t a n d n erv es.
But fiv e o 'c lo ck c am e a n d th en w en t. U ncle V ern on, p ers p ir in g s lig htly in
his s u it, o pen ed th e f ro nt d oor, p eere d u p a n d d ow n th e s tr e et, th en w ith dre w h is
head q uic k ly .
“T hey 'r e l a te !” h e s n arle d a t H arry .
I k now ,” s a id H arry . “ M ay be— er— th e t r a ff ic 's b ad , o r s o m eth in g.”
Ten p ast f iv e … th en a q uarte r p ast f iv e … Harry w as s ta rtin g t o f e el a n xio us
him se lf n ow . A t h alf p ast, h e h eard U ncle V ern on a n d A unt P etu nia c o nvers in g
in t e rs e m utte rs i n t h e l iv in g r o om .
“N o c o nsid era tio n a t a ll.”
“W e m ig ht'v e h ad a n e n gag em en t.”
“M ay be t h ey t h in k t h ey 'l l g et i n vite d t o d in ner i f t h ey 'r e l a te .”
“W ell, th ey m ost c erta in ly w on't b e,” s a id U ncle V ern on, a n d H arry h eard

him sta n d u p a n d sta rt p acin g th e liv in g ro om . “ T hey 'l l ta k e th e b oy a n d g o,
th ere 'l l b e n o h an gin g a ro und. T hat's if th ey 'r e c o m in g a t a ll. P ro bab ly m is ta k en
th e d ay. I d are sa y th eir k in d d on't s e t m uch s to re b y p unctu ality . E ith er th at o r
th ey d riv e s o m e t in -p ot c ar t h at's b ro ken d A AAAAAAARRRRRG H!”
Harry ju m ped u p. F ro m th e o th er sid e o f th e liv in g ro om d oor c am e th e
so unds o f th e th re e D urs le y s s c ra m blin g, p an ic -s tr ic k en , a cro ss th e ro om . N ex t
mom en t D udle y c am e f ly in g i n to t h e h all, l o okin g t e rrif ie d .
“W hat h ap pen ed ?” s a id H arry . “ W hat's t h e m atte r? ”
But D udle y did n't se em ab le to sp eak . H an ds still cla m ped over his
butto ck s, h e w ad dle d a s f a st a s h e c o uld in to th e k itc h en . H arry h urrie d in to th e
liv in g r o om .
Loud ban gin gs an d sc ra p in gs w ere co m in g fro m beh in d th e D urs le y s'
board ed -u p f ir e p la ce, w hic h h ad a f a k e c o al f ir e p lu gged i n f ro nt o f i t.
“W hat is it? ” g asp ed A unt P etu nia , w ho h ad b ack ed in to th e w all a n d w as
sta rin g, t e rrif ie d , t o w ard t h e f ir e . “ W hat i s i t, V ern on?”
But th ey w ere le ft in d oubt b are ly a s e co nd lo nger. V oic es c o uld b e h eard
fro m i n sid e t h e b lo ck ed f ir e p la ce.
“O uch ! F re d , n o— go b ack , g o b ack , th ere 's b een s o m e k in d o f m is ta k e—
te ll G eo rg e n ot to — OUCH ! G eo rg e, n o, th ere 's n o ro om , g o b ack q uic k ly a n d
te ll R on-”
“M ay be H arry c an h ear u s, D ad — may be h e'l l b e a b le t o l e t u s o ut- ”
There w as a l o ud h am merin g o f f is ts o n t h e b oard s b eh in d t h e e le ctr ic f ir e .
“H arry ? H arry , c an y ou h ear u s? ”
The D urs le y s r o unded o n H arry l ik e a p air o f a n gry w olv erin es.
“W hat i s t h is ? ” g ro w le d U ncle V ern on. “ W hat's g oin g o n?”
“T hey — th ey 'v e tr ie d to g et h ere b y F lo o p ow der,” sa id H arry , fig htin g a
mad d esir e t o l a u gh. “ T hey c an t r a v el b y f ir e — only y ou'v e b lo ck ed t h e f ir e p la ce
—han g o n— ”
He a p pro ach ed t h e f ir e p la ce a n d c alle d t h ro ugh t h e b oard s.
“M r. W easle y ? C an y ou h ear m e?”
The h am merin g s to pped . S om eb ody i n sid e t h e c h im ney p ie ce s a id , “ S hh!”
“M r. W easle y, it's H arry … th e f ir e p la ce h as b een b lo ck ed u p. Y ou w on't b e
ab le t o g et t h ro ugh t h ere .”
“D am n!” s a id M r. W easle y 's v oic e. “ W hat o n e arth d id th ey w an t to b lo ck
up t h e f ir e p la ce f o r? ”
“T hey 'v e g ot a n e le ctr ic f ir e ,” H arry e x pla in ed .
“R eally ?” sa id M r. W easle y 's v oic e e x cite d ly . “ E cle ctic , y ou sa y ? W ith a
plu g? G ra cio us, I m ust s e e t h at… L et's t h in k … ouch , R on!”
Ron's v oic e n ow j o in ed t h e o th ers '.

“W hat a re w e d oin g h ere ? H as s o m eth in g g one w ro ng?”
“O h n o, R on,” c am e F re d 's v oic e, v ery sa rc astic ally . “ N o, th is is e x actly
where w e w an te d t o e n d u p.”
“Y eah , w e'r e h av in g th e tim e o f o ur liv es h ere ,” s a id G eo rg e, w hose v oic e
so unded m uff le d , a s t h ough h e w as s q uash ed a g ain st t h e w all.
“B oys, b oys… ” s a id M r. W easle y v ag uely . “ I'm t r y in g t o t h in k w hat t o d o…
Yes … only w ay … S ta n d b ack , H arry .”
Harry r e tr e ate d t o t h e s o fa . U ncle V ern on, h ow ev er, m oved f o rw ard .
“W ait a m om en t! ” h e b ello w ed a t th e f ir e . “ W hat e x actly a re y ou g oin g to
—”
BA NG.
The ele ctr ic fir e sh ot acro ss th e ro om as th e b oard ed -u p fir e p la ce b urs t
outw ard , e x pellin g M r. W easle y, F re d , G eo rg e, a n d R on in a c lo ud o f r u bble a n d
lo ose c h ip pin gs. A unt P etu nia s h rie k ed a n d f e ll b ack w ard o ver th e c o ff e e ta b le ;
Uncle V ern on c au ght h er b efo re s h e h it th e flo or, a n d g ap ed , s p eech le ss, a t th e
Weasle y s, a ll o f w hom h ad b rig ht r e d h air , i n clu din g F re d a n d G eo rg e, w ho w ere
id en tic al t o t h e l a st f re ck le .
“T hat's b ette r,” p an te d M r. W easle y, b ru sh in g d ust fro m h is lo ng g re en
ro bes a n d s tr a ig hte n in g h is g la sse s. “ A h— you m ust b e H arry 's a u nt a n d u ncle !”
Tall, th in , an d bald in g, he m oved to w ard U ncle Vern on, his han d
outs tr e tc h ed , but U ncle V ern on back ed aw ay se v era l paces, dra g gin g A unt
Petu nia . W ord s u tte rly fa ile d U ncle V ern on. H is b est s u it w as c o vere d in w hite
dust, w hic h h ad s e ttle d i n h is h air a n d m usta ch e a n d m ad e h im l o ok a s t h ough h e
had j u st a g ed t h ir ty y ears .
“E r— yes— so rry ab out th at,” sa id M r. W easle y, lo w erin g his han d an d
lo okin g o ver h is s h ould er a t th e b la ste d f ir e p la ce. “ It's a ll m y f a u lt. I t ju st d id n't
occu r to m e th at w e w ould n't b e a b le to g et o ut a t th e o th er e n d. I h ad y our
fir e p la ce c o nnecte d to th e F lo o N etw ork , y ou se e— ju st fo r a n a fte rn oon, y ou
know , s o w e c o uld g et H arry . M uggle f ir e p la ces a re n 't s u ppose d t o b e c o nnecte d ,
str ic tly s p eak in g— but I 'v e g ot a u se fu l c o nta ct a t th e F lo o R eg ula tio n P an el a n d
he f ix ed it f o r m e. I c an p ut it r ig ht in a jif f y , th ough, d on't w orry . I 'l l lig ht a f ir e
to s e n d t h e b oys b ack , a n d t h en I c an r e p air y our f ir e p la ce b efo re I D is a p para te .”
Harry w as r e ad y t o b et t h at t h e D urs le y s h ad n't u nders to od a s in gle w ord o f
th is . They w ere still gap in g at M r. W easle y, th unders tr u ck . A unt Petu nia
sta g gere d u prig ht a g ain a n d h id b eh in d U ncle V ern on.
“H ello , H arry !” s a id M r. W easle y b rig htly . “ G ot y our t r u nk r e ad y?”
“It's u psta ir s ,” s a id H arry , g rin nin g b ack .
“W e'l l g et it,” s a id F re d a t o nce. W in kin g a t H arry , h e a n d G eo rg e le ft th e
ro om . T hey k new w here H arry 's b ed ro om w as, h av in g o nce r e sc u ed h im f ro m it

in th e d ead o f n ig ht. H arry s u sp ecte d th at F re d a n d G eo rg e w ere h opin g fo r a
glim pse o f D udle y ; t h ey h ad h eard a l o t a b out h im f ro m H arry .
“W ell,” s a id M r. W easle y, s w in gin g h is a rm s s lig htly , w hile h e tr ie d to f in d
word s to b re ak th e v ery n asty s ile n ce. “ V ery — erm — very n ic e p la ce y ou'v e g ot
here .”
As th e u su ally s p otle ss liv in g ro om w as n ow c o vere d in d ust a n d b its o f
bric k , th is re m ark d id n't g o d ow n to o w ell w ith th e D urs le y s. U ncle V ern on's
fa ce p urp le d o nce m ore , a n d A unt P etu nia sta rte d c h ew in g h er to ngue a g ain .
How ev er, t h ey s e em ed t o o s c are d t o a ctu ally s a y a n yth in g.
Mr. W easle y w as lo okin g a ro und. H e lo ved e v ery th in g to d o w ith M uggle s.
Harry c o uld se e h im itc h in g to g o a n d e x am in e th e te le v is io n a n d th e v id eo
re co rd er.
“T hey r u n o ff e ck eltr ic ity , d o th ey ?” h e s a id k now le d geab ly . “ A h y es, I c an
se e th e p lu gs. I c o lle ct p lu gs,” h e a d ded to U ncle V ern on. “ A nd b atte rie s. G ot a
very l a rg e c o lle ctio n o f b atte rie s. M y w if e t h in ks I 'm m ad , b ut t h ere y ou a re .”
Uncle V ern on c le arly th ought M r. W easle y w as m ad to o. H e m oved e v er s o
slig htly t o t h e r ig ht, s c re en in g A unt P etu nia f ro m v ie w , a s t h ough h e t h ought M r.
Weasle y m ig ht s u dden ly r u n a t t h em a n d a tta ck .
Dudle y s u dden ly r e ap peare d in th e r o om . H arry c o uld h ear th e c lu nk o f h is
tr u nk o n th e sta ir s , an d k new th at th e so unds h ad sc are d D udle y o ut o f th e
kitc h en . D udle y e d ged a lo ng th e w all, g azin g a t M r. W easle y w ith te rrif ie d e y es,
an d a tte m pte d to c o nceal h im se lf b eh in d h is m oth er a n d fa th er. U nfo rtu nate ly ,
Uncle V ern on's b ulk , w hile s u ff ic ie n t to h id e b ony A unt P etu nia , w as n ow here
near e n ough t o c o nceal D udle y.
“A h, th is is y our c o usin , is it, H arry ?” sa id M r. W easle y, ta k in g a n oth er
bra v e s ta b a t m ak in g c o nvers a tio n.
“Y ep ,” s a id H arry , “ th at's D udle y.”
He a n d R on e x ch an ged g la n ces a n d th en q uic k ly lo oked a w ay fro m e ach
oth er; th e te m pta tio n to b urs t o ut la u ghin g w as a lm ost o verw helm in g. D udle y
was still c lu tc h in g h is b otto m a s th ough a fra id it m ig ht fa ll o ff . M r. W easle y,
how ev er, se em ed g en uin ely co ncern ed at D udle y 's p ecu lia r b eh av io r. In deed ,
fro m th e to ne o f h is v oic e w hen h e n ex t s p oke, H arry w as q uite s u re th at M r.
Weasle y th ought D udle y w as q uite as m ad as th e D urs le y s th ought h e w as,
ex cep t t h at M r. W easle y f e lt s y m path y r a th er t h an f e ar.
“H av in g a g ood h olid ay, D udle y ?” h e s a id k in dly .
Dudle y w him pere d . H arry sa w his han ds tig hte n still hard er over his
massiv e b ack sid e.
Fre d a n d G eo rg e c am e b ack in to th e ro om c arry in g H arry 's s c h ool tr u nk.
They g la n ced a ro und a s th ey e n te re d a n d s p otte d D udle y. T heir fa ces c ra ck ed

in to i d en tic al e v il g rin s.
“A h, r ig ht,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ B ette r g et c ra ck in g t h en .”
He p ush ed u p t h e s le ev es o f h is r o bes a n d t o ok o ut h is w an d. H arry s a w t h e
Durs le y s d ra w b ack a g ain st t h e w all a s o ne.
“In cen dio !” sa id M r. W easle y, p oin tin g h is w an d a t th e h ole in th e w all
beh in d h im .
Fla m es ro se a t o nce in th e fir e p la ce, c ra ck lin g m errily a s th ough th ey h ad
been b urn in g fo r h ours . M r. W easle y to ok a sm all d ra w str in g b ag fro m h is
pock et, u ntie d i t, t o ok a p in ch o f t h e p ow der i n sid e, a n d t h re w i t o nto t h e f la m es,
whic h t u rn ed e m era ld g re en a n d r o are d h ig her t h an e v er.
“O ff y ou g o t h en , F re d ,” s a id M r. W easle y.
“C om in g,” s a id F re d . “ O h n o— han g o n— ”
A b ag o f s w eets h ad s p ille d o ut o f F re d 's p ock et a n d th e c o nte n ts w ere n ow
ro llin g i n e v ery d ir e ctio n— big , f a t t o ff e es i n b rig htly c o lo re d w ra p pers .
Fre d s c ra m ble d a ro und, c ra m min g th em b ack in to h is p ock et, th en g av e th e
Durs le y s a c h eery w av e, s te p ped f o rw ard , a n d w alk ed r ig ht in to th e f ir e , s a y in g
“th e B urro w !” A unt Petu nia gav e a little sh udderin g gasp . There w as a
whoosh in g s o und, a n d F re d v an is h ed .
“R ig ht t h en , G eo rg e,” s a id M r. W easle y, “ y ou a n d t h e t r u nk.”
Harry h elp ed G eo rg e c arry th e tr u nk fo rw ard in to th e fla m es a n d tu rn it
onto its e n d s o th at h e c o uld h old it b ette r. T hen , w ith a s e co nd w hoosh , G eo rg e
had c rie d “ th e B urro w !” a n d v an is h ed t o o.
“R on, y ou n ex t,” s a id M r. W easle y.
“S ee y ou,” s a id R on b rig htly to th e D urs le y s. H e g rin ned b ro ad ly a t H arry ,
th en s te p ped i n to t h e f ir e , s h oute d “ th e B urro w !” a n d d is a p peare d .
Now H arry a n d M r. W easle y a lo ne r e m ain ed .
“W ell… 'b ye t h en ,” H arry s a id t o t h e D urs le y s.
They d id n't s a y a n yth in g a t a ll. H arry m oved to w ard th e f ir e , b ut ju st a s h e
re ach ed th e e d ge o f th e h earth , M r. W easle y p ut o ut a h an d a n d h eld h im b ack .
He w as l o okin g a t t h e D urs le y s i n a m azem en t.
“H arry s a id g ood-b ye t o y ou,” h e s a id . “ D id n't y ou h ear h im ?”
“It d oesn 't m atte r,” H arry m utte re d t o M r. W easle y. “ H onestly , I d on't c are .”
Mr. W easle y d id n ot r e m ove h is h an d f ro m H arry 's s h ould er.
“Y ou a re n 't g oin g to s e e y our n ep hew till n ex t s u m mer,” h e s a id to U ncle
Vern on i n m ild i n dig natio n. “ S ure ly y ou'r e g oin g t o s a y g ood-b ye?”
Uncle Vern on's fa ce work ed fu rio usly . The id ea of bein g ta u ght
co nsid era tio n b y a m an w ho h ad ju st b la ste d a w ay h alf h is liv in g ro om w all
se em ed to b e c au sin g h im in te n se s u ff e rin g. B ut M r. W easle y 's w an d w as s till in
his h an d, a n d U ncle V ern on's tin y e y es d arte d to it o nce, b efo re h e s a id , v ery

re se n tf u lly , “ G ood-b ye, t h en .”
“S ee y ou,” sa id H arry , p uttin g o ne fo ot fo rw ard in to th e g re en fla m es,
whic h fe lt p le asa n tly lik e w arm b re ath . A t th at m om en t, h ow ev er, a h orrib le
gag gin g s o und e ru pte d b eh in d h im , a n d A unt P etu nia s ta rte d t o s c re am .
Harry w heele d a ro und. D udle y w as n o lo nger s ta n din g b eh in d h is p are n ts .
He w as k neelin g b esid e t h e c o ff e e t a b le , a n d h e w as g ag gin g a n d s p utte rin g o n a
fo ot- lo ng, purp le , slim y th in g th at w as pro tr u din g fro m his m outh . O ne
bew ild ere d se co nd la te r, H arry re aliz ed th at th e fo ot- lo ng th in g w as D udle y 's
to ngue— an d t h at a b rig htly c o lo re d t o ff e e w ra p per l a y o n t h e f lo or b efo re h im .
Aunt P etu nia h urle d h ers e lf o nto th e g ro und b esid e D udle y, s e iz ed th e e n d
of his sw olle n to ngue, an d atte m pte d to w re n ch it out of his m outh ;
unsu rp ris in gly , D udle y y elle d a n d s p utte re d w ors e th an e v er, tr y in g to f ig ht h er
off . U ncle V ern on w as b ello w in g a n d w av in g h is a rm s a ro und, a n d M r. W easle y
had t o s h out t o m ak e h im se lf h eard .
“N ot t o w orry , I c an s o rt h im o ut! ” h e y elle d , a d van cin g o n D udle y w ith h is
wan d o uts tr e tc h ed , b ut A unt P etu nia s c re am ed w ors e t h an e v er a n d t h re w h ers e lf
on t o p o f D udle y, s h ie ld in g h im f ro m M r. W easle y.
“N o, r e ally !” s a id M r. W easle y d esp era te ly . “ It's a s im ple p ro cess i t w as t h e
to ff e e— my s o n F re d — re al p ra ctic al j o ker— but i t's o nly a n E ngorg em en t C harm
—at l e ast, I t h in k i t i s — ple ase , I c an c o rre ct i t— ”
But fa r fro m b ein g re assu re d , th e D urs le y s b ecam e m ore p an ic str ic k en ;
Aunt Petu nia w as so bbin g hyste ric ally , tu ggin g D udle y 's to ngue as th ough
dete rm in ed to r ip it o ut; D udle y a p peare d to b e s u ff o catin g u nder th e c o m bin ed
pre ssu re o f h is m oth er a n d h is to ngue; a n d U ncle V ern on, w ho h ad lo st c o ntr o l
co m ple te ly , s e iz ed a c h in a f ig ure f ro m o n to p o f th e s id eb oard a n d th re w it v ery
hard a t M r. W easle y, w ho d uck ed , c au sin g th e o rn am en t to s h atte r in th e b la ste d
fir e p la ce.
“N ow r e ally !” s a id M r. W easle y a n grily , b ra n dis h in g h is w an d. “ I'm tr y in g
to h elp !”
Bello w in g lik e a w ounded hip po, U ncle V ern on sn atc h ed up an oth er
orn am en t.
“H arry , g o! J u st g o!” M r. W easle y s h oute d , h is w an d o n U ncle V ern on. “ I'l l
so rt t h is o ut! ”
Harry d id n't w an t to m is s th e fu n, b ut U ncle V ern on's se co nd o rn am en t
narro w ly m is se d h is le ft ear, an d o n b ala n ce h e th ought it b est to le av e th e
situ atio n to M r. W easle y. H e s te p ped in to th e fir e , lo okin g o ver h is s h ould er a s
he s a id “ th e B urro w !” H is la st fle etin g g lim pse o f th e liv in g ro om w as o f M r.
Weasle y b la stin g a th ir d o rn am en t o ut o f U ncle V ern on's h an d w ith h is w an d,
Aunt P etu nia s c re am in g a n d ly in g o n to p o f D udle y, a n d D udle y 's to ngue lo llin g

aro und l ik e a g re at s lim y p yth on. B ut n ex t m om en t H arry h ad b eg un t o s p in v ery
fa st, an d th e D urs le y s' liv in g ro om w as w hip ped out of sig ht in a ru sh of
em era ld -g re en f la m es.

C H APT ER F IV E
W EA SL EY S' W IZ A RD W HEEZES
Harry sp un fa ste r an d fa ste r, elb ow s tu ck ed tig htly to h is sid es, b lu rre d
f ir e p la ces fla sh in g p ast h im , u ntil h e sta rte d to fe el sic k a n d c lo se d h is e y es.
T hen , w hen a t la st h e fe lt h im se lf slo w in g d ow n, h e th re w o ut h is h an ds a n d
c am e to a h alt in tim e to p re v en t h im se lf fro m fa llin g fa ce fo rw ard o ut o f th e
W easle y s' k itc h en f ir e .
“D id h e e at it? ” s a id F re d e x cite d ly , h old in g o ut a h an d to p ull H arry to h is
f e e
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry , s tr a ig hte n in g u p. “ W hat w as i t? ”
“T on-T ongue T off e e,” s a id F re d b rig htly . “ G eo rg e a n d I in ven te d th em , a n d
w e'v e b een l o okin g f o r s o m eo ne t o t e st t h em o n a ll s u m mer… ”
The tin y k itc h en e x plo ded w ith la u ghte r; H arry lo oked a ro und a n d s a w th at
R on a n d G eo rg e w ere s ittin g a t th e s c ru bbed w ooden ta b le w ith tw o r e d -h air e d
p eo ple H arry h ad n ev er se en b efo re , th ough h e k new im med ia te ly w ho th ey
m ust b e: B ill a n d C harlie , t h e t w o e ld est W easle y b ro th ers .
“H ow 'r e y ou d oin g, H arry ?” s a id th e n eare r o f th e tw o, g rin nin g a t h im a n d
h old in g o ut a la rg e h an d, w hic h H arry s h ook, f e elin g c allu se s a n d b lis te rs u nder
h is fin gers . T his h ad to b e C harlie , w ho w ork ed w ith d ra g ons in R om an ia .
C harlie w as b uilt lik e th e tw in s, s h orte r a n d s to ck ie r th an P erc y a n d R on, w ho
w ere both lo ng an d la n ky. H e had a bro ad , good-n atu re d fa ce, w hic h w as
w eath er- b eate n an d so fre ck ly th at h e lo oked alm ost ta n ned ; h is arm s w ere
m usc u la r, a n d o ne o f t h em h ad a l a rg e, s h in y b urn o n i t.
Bill g ot to h is fe et, sm ilin g, an d als o sh ook H arry 's h an d. B ill cam e as
s o m eth in g o f a su rp ris e . H arry k new th at h e w ork ed fo r th e w iz ard in g b an k,
G rin gotts , an d th at B ill h ad b een H ead B oy at H ogw arts ; H arry h ad alw ay s
i m ag in ed B ill to b e a n o ld er v ers io n o f P erc y : fu ssy a b out ru le -b re ak in g a n d
f o nd o f b ossin g e v ery one a ro und. H ow ev er, B ill w as— th ere w as n o o th er w ord
f o r it— co ol. H e w as ta ll, w ith lo ng h air th at h e h ad tie d b ack in a p onyta il. H e
w as w earin g a n e arrin g w ith w hat lo oked lik e a fa n g d an glin g fro m it. B ill's
c lo th es w ould n ot h av e lo oked o ut o f p la ce a t a r o ck c o ncert, e x cep t th at H arry
r e co gniz ed h is b oots t o b e m ad e, n ot o f l e ath er, b ut o f d ra g on h id e.
Befo re an y o f th em co uld sa y an yth in g els e , th ere w as a fa in t p oppin g
n ois e , a n d M r. W easle y a p peare d o ut o f th in a ir a t G eo rg e's s h ould er. H e w as
l o okin g a n grie r t h an H arry h ad e v er s e en h im .
“T hat w asn 't fu nny F re d !” h e sh oute d . “ W hat o n e arth d id y ou g iv e th at

Muggle b oy?”
“I did n't giv e him an yth in g,” sa id F re d , w ith an oth er ev il grin . I ju st
dro pped i t… I t w as h is f a u lt h e w en t a n d a te i t, I n ev er t o ld h im t o .”
“Y ou d ro pped it o n p urp ose !” ro are d M r. W easle y. “ Y ou k new h e'd e at it,
you k new h e w as o n a d ie t— ”
“H ow b ig d id h is t o ngue g et? ” G eo rg e a sk ed e ag erly .
“It w as f o ur f e et l o ng b efo re h is p are n ts w ould l e t m e s h rin k i t! ”
Harry a n d t h e W easle y s r o are d w ith l a u ghte r a g ain .
“It is n 't fu nny!” M r. W easle y sh oute d . “T hat so rt o f b eh av io r se rio usly
underm in es w iz ard -M uggle re la tio ns! I s p en d h alf m y lif e c am paig nin g a g ain st
th e m is tr e atm en t o f M uggle s, a n d m y o w n s o ns
“W e d id n't g iv e i t t o h im b ecau se h e's a M uggle !” s a id F re d i n dig nan tly .
“N o, w e g av e i t t o h im b ecau se h e's a g re at b ully in g g it,” s a id G eo rg e. “ Is n 't
he, H arry ?”
“Y eah , h e i s , M r. W easle y,” s a id H arry e arn estly .
“T hat's n ot t h e p oin t! ” r a g ed M r. W easle y. “ Y ou w ait u ntil I t e ll y our m oth er
—”
“T ell m e w hat? ” s a id a v oic e b eh in d t h em .
Mrs . W easle y h ad ju st e n te re d th e k itc h en . S he w as a s h ort, p lu m p w om an
with a v ery k in d f a ce, t h ough h er e y es w ere p re se n tly n arro w ed w ith s u sp ic io n.
“O h h ello , H arry , d ear,” s h e s a id , s p ottin g h im a n d s m ilin g. T hen h er e y es
sn ap ped b ack t o h er h usb an d. “ T ell m e w hat, A rth ur? ”
Mr. W easle y h esita te d . H arry c o uld te ll th at, h ow ev er a n gry h e w as w ith
Fre d an d G eo rg e, he had n't re ally in te n ded to te ll M rs . W easle y w hat had
hap pen ed . T here w as a s ile n ce, w hile M r. W easle y e y ed h is w if e n erv ously . T hen
tw o g ir ls a p peare d in th e k itc h en d oorw ay b eh in d M rs . W easle y. O ne, w ith v ery
bush y b ro w n h air a n d ra th er la rg e fro nt te eth , w as H arry 's a n d R on's frie n d,
Herm io ne G ra n ger. T he o th er, w ho w as s m all a n d r e d -h air e d , w as R on's y ounger
sis te r, G in ny. B oth o f th em sm ile d a t H arry , w ho g rin ned b ack , w hic h m ad e
Gin ny g o s c arle t— sh e h ad b een v ery t a k en w ith H arry e v er s in ce h is f ir s t v is it t o
th e B urro w .
“T ell m e w hat, A rth ur? ” M rs . W easle y re p eate d , in a d an gero us so rt o f
voic e.
“It's n oth in g, M olly ,” m um ble d M r. W easle y, “ F re d a n d G eo rg e ju st— but
I'v e h ad w ord s w ith t h em — ”
“W hat h av e t h ey d one t h is t im e?” s a id M rs . W easle y. “ If i t's g ot a n yth in g t o
do w ith W easle y s' W iz ard W heezes— ”
“W hy d on't y ou sh ow H arry w here h e's sle ep in g, R on?” sa id H erm io ne
fro m t h e d oorw ay.

“H e k now s w here h e's s le ep in g,” s a id R on, “ in m y r o om , h e s le p t th ere la st
—”
“W e c an a ll g o,” s a id H erm io ne p oin te d ly .
“O h,” s a id R on, c o tto nin g o n. “ R ig ht.”
“Y eah , w e'l l c o m e t o o,” s a id G eo rg e.
“Y ou s ta y w here y ou a re !” s n arle d M rs . W easle y.
Harry a n d R on e d ged o ut o f t h e k itc h en , a n d t h ey, H erm io ne, a n d G in ny s e t
off a lo ng th e n arro w h allw ay a n d u p th e r ic k ety s ta ir c ase th at z ig zag ged th ro ugh
th e h ouse t o t h e u pper s to rie s.
“W hat a re W easle y s' W iz ard W heezes? ” H arry a sk ed a s t h ey c lim bed .
Ron a n d G in ny b oth l a u ghed , a lth ough H erm io ne d id n't .
“M um fo und th is sta ck o f o rd er fo rm s w hen sh e w as c le an in g F re d a n d
Geo rg e's ro om ,” sa id R on quie tly . “G re at lo ng pric e lis ts fo r stu ff th ey 'v e
in ven te d . J o ke s tu ff , y ou k now . F ak e w an ds a n d tr ic k s w eets , lo ad s o f s tu ff . It
was b rillia n t, I n ev er k new t h ey 'd b een i n ven tin g a ll t h at… ”
“W e'v e b een h earin g e x plo sio ns o ut o f th eir ro om fo r a g es, b ut w e n ev er
th ought th ey w ere a ctu ally m ak in g th in gs,” s a id G in ny. “ W e th ought th ey ju st
lik ed t h e n ois e .”
“O nly , m ost o f th e s tu ff — well, a ll o f it, r e ally — was a b it d an gero us,” s a id
Ron, “ an d, y ou k now , th ey w ere p la n nin g to s e ll it a t H ogw arts to m ak e s o m e
money, a n d M um w en t m ad a t th em . T old th em th ey w ere n 't a llo w ed to m ak e
an y m ore o f it, a n d b urn ed a ll th e o rd er f o rm s… S he's f u rio us a t th em a n yw ay.
They d id n't g et a s m an y O . W . L . s a s s h e e x pecte d .”
O. W . L . s w ere O rd in ary W iz ard in g L ev els , th e e x am in atio ns H ogw arts
stu den ts t o ok a t t h e a g e o f f if te en .
“A nd th en th ere w as th is b ig r o w ,” G in ny s a id , “ b ecau se M um w an ts th em
to g o i n to t h e M in is tr y o f M ag ic l ik e D ad , a n d t h ey t o ld h er a ll t h ey w an t t o d o i s
open a j o ke s h op.”
Ju st th en a door on th e se co nd la n din g open ed , an d a fa ce poked out
wearin g h orn -rim med g la sse s a n d a v ery a n noyed e x pre ssio n.
“H i, P erc y,” s a id H arry .
“O h h ello , H arry ,” s a id P erc y. “ I w as w onderin g w ho w as m ak in g a ll th e
nois e . I'm tr y in g to w ork in h ere , y ou k now I'v e g ot a re p ort to fin is h fo r th e
off ic e— an d it's ra th er d if f ic u lt to c o ncen tr a te w hen p eo ple k eep th underin g u p
an d d ow n t h e s ta ir s .”
“W e'r e n ot th underin g, “ sa id R on ir rita b ly . “ W e'r e w alk in g. S orry if w e'v e
dis tu rb ed t h e t o p-s e cre t w ork in gs o f t h e M in is tr y o f M ag ic .”
“W hat a re y ou w ork in g o n?” s a id H arry .
“A re p ort fo r th e D ep artm en t o f In te rn atio nal M ag ic al C oopera tio n,” s a id

Perc y sm ugly . “ W e'r e tr y in g to sta n dard iz e c au ld ro n th ic k ness. S om e o f th ese
fo re ig n i m ports a re j u st a s h ad e t o o t h in — le ak ag es h av e b een i n cre asin g a t a r a te
of a lm ost t h re e p erc en t a y ear— ”
“T hat'l l c h an ge th e w orld , th at re p ort w ill,” s a id R on. “ F ro nt p ag e o f th e
Daily P ro phet, I e x pect, c au ld ro n l e ak s.”
Perc y w en t s lig htly p in k.
“Y ou m ig ht sn eer, R on,” he sa id heate d ly , “b ut unle ss so m e so rt of
in te rn atio nal la w is im pose d w e m ig ht w ell f in d th e m ark et f lo oded w ith f lim sy ,
sh allo w -b otto m ed p ro ducts t h at s e rio usly e n dan ger— ”
“Y eah , y eah , a ll rig ht,” s a id R on, a n d h e s ta rte d o ff u psta ir s a g ain . P erc y
sla m med h is b ed ro om d oor s h ut. A s H arry , H erm io ne, a n d G in ny f o llo w ed R on
up t h re e m ore f lig hts o f s ta ir s , s h outs f ro m t h e k itc h en b elo w e ch oed u p t o t h em .
It s o unded a s t h ough M r. W easle y h ad t o ld M rs . W easle y a b out t h e t o ff e es.
The r o om a t t h e t o p o f t h e h ouse w here R on s le p t l o oked m uch a s i t h ad t h e
la st tim e th at H arry had co m e to sta y : th e sa m e poste rs of R on's fa v orite
Quid ditc h te am , th e C hudle y C an nons, w ere w hir lin g a n d w av in g o n th e w alls
an d s lo pin g c eilin g, a n d th e fis h ta n k o n th e w in dow sill, w hic h h ad p re v io usly
held fro g sp aw n, now co nta in ed one ex tr e m ely la rg e fro g. R on's old ra t,
Scab bers , w as h ere n o m ore , b ut in ste ad th ere w as th e tin y g ra y o w l th at h ad
deliv ere d R on's le tte r to H arry in P riv et D riv e. I t w as h oppin g u p a n d d ow n in a
sm all c ag e a n d t w itte rin g m ad ly .
“S hut u p, P ig ,” s a id R on, e d gin g h is w ay b etw een tw o o f th e f o ur b ed s th at
had b een s q ueezed in to th e r o om . “ F re d a n d G eo rg e a re in h ere w ith u s, b ecau se
Bill a n d C harlie a re in th eir r o om ,” h e to ld H arry . “ P erc y g ets to k eep h is r o om
all t o h im se lf b ecau se h e's g ot t o w ork .”
“E r— why a re y ou c allin g t h at o w l P ig ?” H arry a sk ed R on.
“B ecau se h e's b ein g s tu pid ,” s a id G in ny, “ Its p ro per n am e i s P ig w id geo n.”
“Y eah , a n d th at's n ot a s tu pid n am e a t a ll,” s a id R on s a rc astic ally . “ G in ny
nam ed h im ,” h e ex pla in ed to H arry . “S he re ck ons it's sw eet. A nd I tr ie d to
ch an ge it, b ut it w as to o la te , h e w on't a n sw er to a n yth in g e ls e . S o n ow h e's P ig .
I'v e g ot t o k eep h im u p h ere b ecau se h e a n noys E rro l a n d H erm es. H e a n noys m e
to o, c o m e t o t h at.
Pig w id geo n z o om ed h ap pily a ro und h is c ag e, h ootin g s h rilly . H arry k new
Ron t o o w ell t o t a k e h im s e rio usly . H e h ad m oan ed c o ntin ually a b out h is o ld r a t,
Scab bers , b ut h ad b een m ost u pse t w hen H erm io ne's c at, C ro oksh an ks, a p peare d
to h av e e ate n h im .
“W here 's C ro oksh an ks? ” H arry a sk ed H erm io ne n ow .
“O ut in th e g ard en , I e x pect,” sh e sa id . “ H e lik es c h asin g g nom es. H e's
nev er s e en a n y b efo re .”

“P erc y 's e n jo yin g w ork , th en ?” s a id H arry , s ittin g d ow n o n o ne o f th e b ed s
an d w atc h in g th e C hudle y C an nons z o om in g in a n d o ut o f th e p oste rs o n th e
ceilin g.
“E njo yin g it? ” sa id R on d ark ly . “ I d on't re ck on h e'd c o m e h om e if D ad
did n't m ak e h im . H e's o bse sse d . J u st d on't g et h im o nto th e s u bje ct o f h is b oss.
Acco rd in g to M r. C ro uch … as I w as s a y in g to M r. C ro uch … Mr. C ro uch is o f
th e opin io n … Mr. C ro uch w as te llin g m e … They 'l l be an nouncin g th eir
en gag em en t a n y d ay n ow .”
“H av e y ou h ad a g ood s u m mer, H arry ?” s a id H erm io ne. “ D id y ou g et o ur
fo od p arc els a n d e v ery th in g?”
“Y eah , t h an ks a l o t, “ s a id H arry . “ T hey s a v ed m y l if e , t h ose c ak es.
“A nd h av e y ou h eard f ro m – ?” R on b eg an , b ut a t a lo ok f ro m H erm io ne h e
fe ll sile n t. H arry knew R on had been ab out to ask ab out S ir iu s. R on an d
Herm io ne had been so deep ly in volv ed in help in g Sir iu s esc ap e fro m th e
Min is tr y o f M ag ic t h at t h ey w ere a lm ost a s c o ncern ed a b out H arry 's g odfa th er a s
he w as. H ow ev er, d is c u ssin g h im in f ro nt o f G in ny w as a b ad id ea. N obody b ut
th em se lv es a n d P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore k new a b out h ow S ir iu s h ad e sc ap ed , o r
belie v ed i n h is i n nocen ce.
“I th in k th ey 'v e sto pped a rg uin g,” sa id H erm io ne, to c o ver th e a w kw ard
mom en t, b ecau se G in ny w as lo okin g c u rio usly f ro m R on to H arry . “ S hall w e g o
dow n a n d h elp y our m um w ith d in ner? ”
“Y eah , a ll r ig ht,” s a id R on. T he f o ur o f t h em l e ft R on's r o om a n d w en t b ack
dow nsta ir s to fin d M rs . W easle y a lo ne in th e k itc h en , lo okin g e x tr e m ely b ad -
te m pere d .
“W e'r e e atin g o ut in th e g ard en ,” s h e s a id w hen th ey c am e in . “ T here 's ju st
not r o om f o r e le v en p eo ple in h ere . C ould y ou ta k e th e p la te s o uts id e, g ir ls ? B ill
an d C harlie a re s e ttin g u p th e ta b le s. K niv es a n d fo rk s, p le ase , y ou tw o,” s h e
sa id to R on a n d H arry , p oin tin g h er w an d a little m ore v ig oro usly th an s h e h ad
in te n ded a t a p ile o f p ota to es i n t h e s in k, w hic h s h ot o ut o f t h eir s k in s s o f a st t h at
th ey r ic o ch ete d o ff t h e w alls a n d c eilin g.
“O h f o r h eav en 's s a k e,” s h e s n ap ped , n ow d ir e ctin g h er w an d a t a d ustp an ,
whic h h opped o ff th e s id eb oard a n d s ta rte d s k atin g a cro ss th e f lo or, s c o opin g u p
th e p ota to es. “ T hose t w o!” s h e b urs t o ut s a v ag ely , n ow p ullin g p ots a n d p an s o ut
of a c u pboard , a n d H arry k new s h e m ean t F re d a n d G eo rg e. I d on't k now w hat's
goin g t o h ap pen t o t h em , I r e ally d on't . N o a m bitio n, u nle ss y ou c o unt m ak in g a s
much t r o uble a s t h ey p ossib ly c an … ”
Mrs . W easle y s la m med a la rg e c o pper s a u cep an d ow n o n th e k itc h en ta b le
an d b eg an to w av e h er w an d a ro und in sid e it. A c re am y s a u ce p oure d f ro m th e
wan d t ip a s s h e s tir re d .

“It's n ot a s t h ough t h ey h av en 't g ot b ra in s, s h e c o ntin ued i r rita b ly , t a k in g t h e
sa u cep an o ver to th e s to ve a n d lig htin g it w ith a f u rth er p oke o f h er w an d, “ b ut
th ey 'r e w astin g t h em , a n d u nle ss t h ey p ull t h em se lv es t o geth er s o on, t h ey 'l l b e i n
re al tr o uble . I'v e h ad m ore o w ls fro m H ogw arts a b out th em th an th e re st p ut
to geth er. If th ey c arry o n th e w ay th ey 'r e g oin g, th ey 'l l e n d u p in fro nt o f th e
Im pro per U se o f M ag ic O ff ic e.”
Mrs . W easle y ja b bed h er w an d at th e cu tle ry d ra w er, w hic h sh ot o pen .
Harry a n d R on b oth ju m ped o ut o f th e w ay a s s e v era l k niv es s o are d o ut o f it,
fle w a cro ss th e k itc h en , a n d b eg an c h oppin g th e p ota to es, w hic h h ad ju st b een
tip ped b ack i n to t h e s in k b y t h e d ustp an .
“I d on't k now w here w e w en t w ro ng w ith t h em ,” s a id M rs . W easle y, p uttin g
dow n h er w an d a n d s ta rtin g to p ull o ut s till m ore s a u cep an s. “ It's b een th e s a m e
fo r y ears , o ne t h in g a fte r a n oth er, a n d t h ey w on't l is te n t o — OH N OT A GAIN !”
She h ad p ic k ed u p h er w an d fro m th e ta b le , an d it h ad em itte d a lo ud
sq ueak a n d t u rn ed i n to a g ia n t r u bber m ouse .
“O ne o f t h eir f a k e w an ds a g ain !” s h e s h oute d . “ H ow m an y t im es h av e I t o ld
th em n ot t o l e av e t h em l y in g a ro und?”
She g ra b bed h er r e al w an d a n d tu rn ed a ro und to f in d th at th e s a u ce o n th e
sto ve w as s m okin g.
“C 'm on,” R on s a id h urrie d ly to H arry , s e iz in g a h an dfu l o f c u tle ry f ro m th e
open d ra w er, “ le t's g o a n d h elp B ill a n d C harlie .”
They l e ft M rs . W easle y a n d h ead ed o ut t h e b ack d oor i n to t h e y ard .
They h ad o nly g one a f e w p aces w hen H erm io ne's b an dy-le g ged g in ger c at,
Cro oksh an ks, c am e p eltin g o ut o f th e g ard en , b ottle -b ru sh ta il h eld h ig h in th e
air , ch asin g w hat lo oked lik e a m uddy pota to on le g s. H arry re co gniz ed it
in sta n tly a s a g nom e. B are ly te n in ch es h ig h, its h orn y little fe et p atte re d v ery
fa st a s it s p rin te d a cro ss th e y ard a n d d iv ed h ead lo ng in to o ne o f th e W ellin gto n
boots th at la y s c atte re d a ro und th e d oor. H arry c o uld h ear th e g nom e g ig glin g
mad ly as C ro oksh an ks in se rte d a paw in to th e boot, tr y in g to re ach it.
Mean w hile , a v ery lo ud c ra sh in g n ois e w as c o m in g fro m th e o th er s id e o f th e
house . T he s o urc e o f th e c o m motio n w as re v eale d a s th ey e n te re d th e g ard en ,
an d s a w th at B ill a n d C harlie b oth h ad th eir w an ds o ut, a n d w ere m ak in g tw o
batte re d o ld ta b le s fly h ig h ab ove th e la w n, sm ash in g in to each o th er, each
atte m ptin g to k nock th e o th er's o ut o f th e a ir. F re d a n d G eo rg e w ere c h eerin g,
Gin ny w as la u ghin g, a n d H erm io ne w as h overin g n ear th e h ed ge, a p pare n tly
to rn b etw een a m use m en t a n d a n xie ty .
Bill's ta b le c au ght C harlie 's w ith a h uge b an g a n d k nock ed o ne o f its le g s
off . T here w as a c la tte r f ro m o verh ead , a n d t h ey a ll l o oked u p t o s e e P erc y 's h ead
pokin g o ut o f a w in dow o n t h e s e co nd f lo or.

“W ill y ou k eep i t d ow n?!” h e b ello w ed .
“S orry , P erc e,” s a id B ill, g rin nin g. “ H ow 'r e th e c au ld ro n b otto m s c o m in g
on?”
“V ery bad ly ,” sa id P erc y peev is h ly , an d he sla m med th e w in dow sh ut.
Chuck lin g, B ill a n d C harlie d ir e cte d th e ta b le s s a fe ly o nto th e g ra ss, e n d to e n d,
an d th en , w ith a flic k o f h is w an d, B ill re atta ch ed th e ta b le le g a n d c o nju re d
ta b le clo th s f ro m n ow here .
By s e v en o 'c lo ck , th e tw o ta b le s w ere g ro an in g u nder d is h es a n d d is h es o f
Mrs . W easle y 's e x celle n t c o okin g, a n d th e n in e W easle y s, H arry , a n d H erm io ne
were se ttlin g th em se lv es dow n to eat ben eath a cle ar, deep -b lu e sk y. To
so m eb ody w ho h ad b een liv in g o n m eals o f in cre asin gly s ta le c ak e a ll s u m mer,
th is w as p ara d is e , a n d a t fir s t, H arry lis te n ed ra th er th an ta lk ed a s h e h elp ed
him se lf t o c h ic k en a n d h am p ie , b oile d p ota to es, a n d s a la d .
At th e f a r e n d o f th e ta b le , P erc y w as te llin g h is f a th er a ll a b out h is r e p ort
on c au ld ro n b otto m s.
“I'v e to ld M r. C ro uch th at I 'l l h av e it r e ad y b y T uesd ay,” P erc y w as s a y in g
pom pously . “ T hat's a b it s o oner th an h e e x pecte d it, b ut I lik e to k eep o n to p o f
th in gs. I th in k h e'l l b e g ra te fu l I'v e d one it in g ood tim e, I m ean , its e x tr e m ely
busy in o ur d ep artm en t ju st n ow , w hat w ith a ll th e a rra n gem en ts fo r th e W orld
Cup. W e'r e j u st n ot g ettin g t h e s u pport w e n eed f ro m t h e D ep artm en t o f M ag ic al
Gam es a n d S ports . L udo B ag m an — ”
“I lik e L udo,” s a id M r. W easle y m ild ly . “ H e w as th e o ne w ho g ot u s s u ch
good tic k ets f o r th e C up. I d id h im a b it o f a f a v or: H is b ro th er, O tto , g ot in to a
sp ot o f tr o uble — a la w nm ow er w ith u nnatu ra l p ow ers — I sm ooth ed th e w hole
th in g o ver.”
“O h B ag m an 's lik ab le en ough, o f co urs e ,” sa id P erc y d is m is siv ely , “b ut
how h e ev er g ot to b e H ead o f D ep artm en t … when I co m pare h im to M r.
Cro uch ! I can 't se e M r. C ro uch lo sin g a m em ber o f o ur d ep artm en t an d n ot
tr y in g to f in d o ut w hat's h ap pen ed to th em . Y ou r e aliz e B erth a J o rk in s h as b een
mis sin g fo r o ver a m onth n ow ? W en t o n h olid ay to A lb an ia a n d n ev er c am e
back ?”
“Y es, I w as a sk in g L udo a b out th at,” s a id M r. W easle y, f ro w nin g. “ H e s a y s
Berth a's g otte n lo st p le n ty o f tim es b efo re n ow — th ough m ust sa y, if it w as
so m eo ne i n m y d ep artm en t, I 'd b e w orrie d … ”
“O h B erth a's h opele ss, a ll rig ht,” sa id P erc y. “ I h ear sh e's b een sh unte d
fro m d ep artm en t t o d ep artm en t f o r y ears , m uch m ore t r o uble t h an s h e's w orth …
but a ll th e s a m e, B ag m an o ught to b e tr y in g to fin d h er. M r. C ro uch h as b een
ta k in g a p ers o nal in te re st, s h e w ork ed in o ur d ep artm en t a t o ne tim e, y ou k now ,
an d I th in k M r. C ro uch w as q uite f o nd o f h er— but B ag m an ju st k eep s la u ghin g

an d s a y in g s h e p ro bab ly m is re ad th e m ap a n d e n ded u p in A ustr a lia in ste ad o f
Alb an ia . H ow ev er” — Perc y h eav ed a n im pre ssiv e s ig h a n d to ok a d eep s w ig o f
eld erflo w er w in e— ”w e'v e g ot q uite e n ough o n o ur p la te s a t th e D ep artm en t o f
In te rn atio nal M ag ic al C oopera tio n w ith out tr y in g to fin d m em bers of oth er
dep artm en ts to o. A s y ou k now , w e'v e g ot a n oth er b ig e v en t to o rg an iz e rig ht
afte r t h e W orld C up.”
Perc y c le are d h is th ro at s ig nif ic an tly a n d lo oked d ow n to w ard th e e n d o f
th e ta b le w here H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne w ere s ittin g. “ Y ou k now th e o ne I 'm
ta lk in g a b out, F ath er.” H e r a is e d h is v oic e s lig htly . “ T he t o p-s e cre t o ne.”
Ron r o lle d h is e y es a n d m utte re d t o H arry a n d H erm io ne, “ H e's b een t r y in g
to g et u s to ask w hat th at ev en t is ev er sin ce h e sta rte d w ork . P ro bab ly an
ex hib itio n o f t h ic k -b otto m ed c au ld ro ns.”
In th e m id dle o f th e ta b le , M rs . W easle y w as a rg uin g w ith B ill a b out h is
earrin g, w hic h s e em ed t o b e a r e cen t a cq uis itio n.
“… w ith a h orrib le g re at fa n g o n it. R eally , B ill, w hat d o th ey s a y a t th e
ban k?”
“M um ,. n o o ne a t th e b an k g iv es a d am n h ow I d re ss a s lo ng a s I b rin g
hom e p le n ty o f t r e asu re ,” s a id B ill p atie n tly .
“A nd y our h air 's g ettin g s illy , d ear,” s a id M rs . W easle y, f in gerin g h er w an d
lo vin gly .” I w is h y ou'd l e t m e g iv e i t a t r im … ”
“I lik e it,” sa id G in ny, w ho w as sittin g besid e B ill. “Y ou'r e so old -
fa sh io ned , Mum . Anyw ay, it's now here near as lo ng as Pro fe sso r
Dum ble d ore 's … ”
Nex t to M rs . W easle y, F re d , G eo rg e, a n d C harlie w ere a ll ta lk in g s p ir ite d ly
ab out t h e W orld C up.
“It's g ot to b e Ire la n d,” s a id C harlie th ic k ly , th ro ugh a m outh fu l o f p ota to .
“T hey f la tte n ed P eru i n t h e s e m if in als .”
“B ulg aria h as g ot V ik to r K ru m , t h ough,” s a id F re d .
“K ru m 's o ne d ecen t p la y er, I re la n d h as g ot s e v en ,” s a id C harlie s h ortly . “ I
wis h E ngla n d h ad g ot t h ro ugh. T hat w as e m barra ssin g, t h at w as.”
“W hat hap pen ed ?” sa id H arry eag erly , re g re ttin g m ore th an ev er his
is o la tio n f ro m t h e w iz ard in g w orld w hen h e w as s tu ck o n P riv et D riv e.
“W en t d ow n to T ra n sy lv an ia , th re e h undre d a n d n in ety to te n ,” s a id C harlie
glo om ily . “ S hock in g p erfo rm an ce. A nd W ale s lo st to U gan da, a n d S co tla n d w as
sla u ghte re d b y L uxem bourg .”
Harry h ad b een o n t h e G ry ff in dor H ouse Q uid ditc h t e am e v er s in ce h is f ir s t
year at H ogw arts an d o w ned o ne o f th e b est ra cin g b ro om s in th e w orld , a
Fir e b olt. F ly in g c am e m ore n atu ra lly to H arry th an a n yth in g e ls e in th e m ag ic al
world , a n d h e p la y ed i n t h e p ositio n o f S eek er o n t h e G ry ff in dor H ouse t e am .

Mr. W easle y c o nju re d u p c an dle s to lig ht th e d ark en in g g ard en b efo re th ey
had th eir h om em ad e s tr a w berry ic e c re am , a n d b y th e tim e th ey h ad fin is h ed ,
moth s w ere flu tte rin g lo w o ver th e ta b le , a n d th e w arm a ir w as p erfu m ed w ith
th e s m ells o f g ra ss a n d h oney su ck le . H arry w as f e elin g e x tr e m ely w ell f e d a n d a t
peace w ith th e w orld as he w atc h ed se v era l gnom es sp rin tin g th ro ugh th e
ro se b ush es, l a u ghin g m ad ly a n d c lo se ly p urs u ed b y C ro oksh an ks.
Ron lo oked c are fu lly u p th e ta b le to c h eck th at th e r e st o f th e f a m ily w ere
all b usy ta lk in g, th en h e s a id v ery q uie tly to H arry , “ S o— hav e y ou h eard fro m
Sir iu s l a te ly ?”
Herm io ne l o oked a ro und, l is te n in g c lo se ly .
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry s o ftly , “ tw ic e. H e s o unds o kay. I w ro te t o h im y este rd ay.
He m ig ht w rite b ack w hile I 'm h ere .”
He su dden ly re m em bere d th e re aso n h e h ad w ritte n to S ir iu s, a n d fo r a
mom en t w as o n th e v erg e o f te llin g R on a n d H erm io ne a b out h is s c ar h urtin g
ag ain , a n d a b out th e d re am th at h ad a w oken h im … but h e r e ally d id n't w an t to
worry t h em j u st n ow , n ot w hen h e h im se lf w as f e elin g s o h ap py a n d p eacefu l.
“L ook a t th e tim e,” M rs . W easle y s a id s u dden ly , c h eck in g h er w ris tw atc h .
“Y ou re ally s h ould b e in b ed , th e w hole lo t o f y ou y ou'l l b e u p a t th e c ra ck o f
daw n to g et to th e C up. H arry , if y ou le av e y our sc h ool lis t o ut, I'l l g et y our
th in gs fo r y ou to m orro w in D ia g on A lle y. I'm g ettin g e v ery one e ls e 's . T here
mig ht n ot b e tim e a fte r th e W orld C up, th e m atc h w en t o n fo r fiv e d ay s la st
tim e.”
“W ow — hope i t d oes t h is t im e!” s a id H arry e n th usia stic ally .
“W ell, I c erta in ly d on't ,” sa id P erc y sa n ctim onio usly . “ I sh udder to th in k
what t h e s ta te o f m y i n -tr a y w ould b e i f I w as a w ay f ro m w ork f o r f iv e d ay s.”
“Y eah , s o m eo ne m ig ht s lip d ra g on d ung i n i t a g ain , e h , P erc e?” s a id F re d .
“T hat w as a s a m ple o f f e rtiliz er f ro m N orw ay !” s a id P erc y, g oin g v ery r e d
in t h e f a ce. “ It w as n oth in g p ers o nal! ”
“It w as,” F re d w his p ere d to H arry a s th ey g ot u p f ro m th e ta b le . “ W e s e n t
it.”

C H APT ER S IX
T H E P O RTK EY
Harry f e lt a s th ough h e h ad b are ly la in d ow n to s te ep in R on's r o om w hen
h e w as b ein g s h ak en a w ak e b y M rs . W easle y.
“T im e t o g o, H arry , d ear,” s h e w his p ere d , m ovin g a w ay t o w ak e R on.
Harry f e lt a ro und f o r h is g la sse s, p ut th em o n, a n d s a t u p. I t w as s till d ark
o uts id e. R on m utte re d in dis tin ctly as h is m oth er ro use d h im . A t th e fo ot o f
H arry 's m attr e ss h e s a w tw o la rg e, d is h ev ele d s h ap es e m erg in g fro m ta n gle s o f
b la n kets .
“'S ' t im e a lr e ad y?” s a id F re d g ro ggily .
They d re sse d i n s ile n ce, t o o s le ep y t o t a lk , t h en , y aw nin g a n d s tr e tc h in g, t h e
f o ur o f t h em h ead ed d ow nsta ir s i n to t h e k itc h en .
Mrs . W easle y w as s tir rin g t h e c o nte n ts o f a l a rg e p ot o n t h e s to ve, w hile M r.
W easle y w as s ittin g a t th e ta b le , c h eck in g a s h eaf o f la rg e p arc h m en t tic k ets . H e
l o oked u p a s th e b oys e n te re d a n d sp re ad h is a rm s so th at th ey c o uld se e h is
c lo th es m ore c le arly . H e w as w earin g w hat a p peare d to b e a g olf in g s w eate r a n d
a v ery o ld p air o f je an s, s lig htly to o b ig f o r h im a n d h eld u p w ith a th ic k le ath er
b elt.
“W hat d 'y ou th in k?” h e a sk ed a n xio usly . “ W e'r e s u ppose d to g o in co gnito
— do I l o ok l ik e a M uggle , H arry ?”
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry , s m ilin g, “ v ery g ood.”
“W here 'r e B ill an d C harlie an d P er- P er- P erc y ?” sa id G eo rg e, fa ilin g to
s tif le a h uge y aw n.
“W ell, th ey 'r e A ppara tin g, are n 't th ey ?” sa id M rs . W easle y, h eav in g th e
l a rg e p ot o ver t o t h e t a b le a n d s ta rtin g to l a d le p orrid ge i n to b ow ls . “ S o t h ey c an
h av e a b it o f a l ie -in .”
Harry knew th at A ppara tin g m ean t dis a p pearin g fro m one pla ce an d
r e ap pearin g alm ost in sta n tly in an oth er, b ut h ad n ev er k now n an y H ogw arts
s tu den t t o d o i t, a n d u nders to od t h at i t w as v ery d if f ic u lt.
“S o th ey 'r e s till in b ed ?” s a id F re d g ru m pily , p ullin g h is b ow l o f p orrid ge
t o w ard h im . “ W hy c an 't w e A ppara te t o o?”
“B ecau se y ou'r e n ot o f a g e a n d y ou h av en 't p asse d y our t e st,” s n ap ped M rs .
W easle y. “ A nd w here h av e t h ose g ir ls g ot t o ?”
She b ustle d o ut o f t h e k itc h en a n d t h ey h eard h er c lim bin g t h e s ta ir s .
“Y ou h av e t o p ass a t e st t o A ppara te ?” H arry a sk ed .
“O h y es,” s a id M r. W easle y, tu ck in g th e tic k ets s a fe ly in to th e b ack p ock et

of h is je an s. “ T he D ep artm en t o f M ag ic al T ra n sp orta tio n h ad to f in e a c o uple o f
peo ple th e o th er d ay f o r A ppara tin g w ith out a lic en se . I t's n ot e asy , A pparitio n,
an d w hen it's n ot d one p ro perty it c an le ad to n asty c o m plic atio ns. T his p air I 'm
ta lk in g a b out w en t a n d s p lin ch ed t h em se lv es.”
Every one a ro und t h e t a b le e x cep t H arry w in ced .
“E r— sp lin ch ed ?” s a id H arry .
“T hey le ft h alf o f th em se lv es b eh in d,” sa id M r. W easle y, n ow sp oonin g
la rg e am ounts o f tr e acle o nto h is p orrid ge. “S o, o f co urs e , th ey w ere stu ck .
Could n't m ove e ith er w ay. H ad t o w ait f o r t h e A ccid en ta l M ag ic R ev ers a l S quad
to s o rt th em o ut. M ean t a f a ir o ld b it o f p ap erw ork , I c an te ll y ou, w hat w ith th e
Muggle s w ho s p otte d t h e b ody p arts t h ey 'd l e ft b eh in d… .”
Harry h ad a s u dden v is io n o f a p air o f le g s a n d a n e y eb all ly in g a b an doned
on t h e p av em en t o f P riv et D riv e.
“W ere t h ey o kay ?” h e a sk ed , s ta rtle d .
“O h y es,” sa id M r. W easle y m atte r- o f-fa ctly . “ B ut th ey g ot a h eav y fin e,
an d I d on't th in k th ey 'l l b e tr y in g it a g ain in a h urry . Y ou d on't m ess a ro und w ith
Apparitio n. T here a re p le n ty o f a d ult w iz ard s w ho d on't b oth er w ith it. P re fe r
bro om s— slo w er, b ut s a fe r.”
“B ut B ill a n d C harlie a n d P erc y c an a ll d o i t? ”
“C harlie h ad to ta k e th e te st tw ic e,” s a id F re d , g rin nin g. “ H e f a ile d th e f ir s t
tim e. A ppara te d f iv e m ile s s o uth o f w here h e m ean t t o , r ig ht o n t o p o f s o m e p oor
old d ear d oin g h er s h oppin g, r e m em ber? ”
“Y es, w ell, h e p asse d th e s e co nd tim e,” s a id M rs . W easle y, m arc h in g b ack
in to t h e k itc h en a m id h earty s n ig gers .
“P erc y o nly p asse d tw o w eek s a g o,” s a id G eo rg e. “ H e's b een A ppara tin g
dow nsta ir s e v ery m orn in g s in ce, j u st t o p ro ve h e c an .”
There w ere f o ots te p s d ow n th e p assa g ew ay a n d H erm io ne a n d G in ny c am e
in to t h e k itc h en , b oth l o okin g p ale a n d d ro w sy .
“W hy d o w e h av e to b e u p so e arly ?” G in ny sa id , ru bbin g h er e y es a n d
sittin g d ow n a t t h e t a b le .
“W e'v e g ot a b it o f a w alk ,” s a id M r. W easle y.
“W alk ?” s a id H arry . “ W hat, a re w e w alk in g t o t h e W orld C up?”
“N o, n o, th at's m ile s a w ay,” s a id M r. W easle y, s m ilin g. “ W e o nly n eed to
walk a s h ort w ay. I t's ju st th at it's v ery d if f ic u lt f o r a la rg e n um ber o f w iz ard s to
co ngre g ate w ith out attr a ctin g M uggle atte n tio n. W e h av e to b e v ery care fu l
ab out h ow w e tr a v el at th e b est o f tim es, an d o n a h uge o ccasio n lik e th e
Quid ditc h W orld C up… ”
“G eo rg e!” s a id M rs . W easle y s h arp ly , a n d t h ey a ll j u m ped .
“W hat? ” s a id G eo rg e, i n a n i n nocen t t o ne t h at d eceiv ed n obody.

“W hat i s t h at i n y our p ock et? ”
“N oth in g!”
“D on't y ou l ie t o m e!”
Mrs . W easle y p oin te d h er w an d a t G eo rg e's p ock et a n d s a id , “ A ccio !”
Sev era l s m all, b rig htly c o lo re d o bje cts z o om ed o ut o f G eo rg e's p ock et; h e
mad e a g ra b fo r th em b ut m is se d , an d th ey sp ed rig ht in to M rs . W easle y 's
outs tr e tc h ed h an d.
“W e to ld y ou to d estr o y th em !” sa id M rs . W easle y fu rio usly , h old in g u p
what w ere u nm is ta k ab ly m ore T on-T ongue T off e es. “ W e to ld y ou to g et rid o f
th e l o t! E m pty y our p ock ets , g o o n, b oth o f y ou!”
It w as a n u nple asa n t s c en e; th e tw in s h ad e v id en tly b een tr y in g to s m uggle
as m an y to ff e es o ut o f th e h ouse as p ossib le , an d it w as o nly b y u sin g h er
Sum monin g C harm t h at M rs . W easle y m an ag ed t o f in d t h em a ll.
“A ccio ! A ccio ! A ccio !” s h e s h oute d , a n d to ff e es z o om ed fro m a ll s o rts o f
unlik ely p la ces, i n clu din g t h e l in in g o f G eo rg e's j a ck et a n d t h e t u rn -u ps o f F re d 's
je an s.
“W e s p en t s ix m onth s d ev elo pin g th ose !” F re d s h oute d a t h is m oth er a s s h e
th re w t h e t o ff e es a w ay.
“O h a f in e w ay to s p en d s ix m onth s!” s h e s h rie k ed . “ N o w onder y ou d id n't
get m ore O . W . L . s !”
All i n a ll, t h e a tm osp here w as n ot v ery f rie n dly a s t h ey t o ok t h eir d ep artu re .
Mrs . W easle y w as still g lo w erin g as sh e k is se d M r. W easle y o n th e ch eek ,
th ough n ot n early a s m uch a s th e tw in s, w ho h ad e ach h ois te d th eir ru ck sa ck s
onto t h eir b ack s a n d w alk ed o ut w ith out a w ord t o h er.
“W ell, h av e a lo vely tim e,” sa id M rs . W easle y, “ an d b eh av e y ours e lv es,”
sh e c alle d a fte r th e tw in s' r e tr e atin g b ack s, b ut th ey d id n ot lo ok b ack o r a n sw er.
“I'l l s e n d B ill, C harlie , a n d P erc y a lo ng a ro und m id day,” M rs . W easle y s a id to
Mr. W easle y, a s h e, H arry , R on, H erm io ne, a n d G in ny se t o ff a cro ss th e d ark
yard a fte r F re d a n d G eo rg e.
It w as c h illy a n d th e m oon w as s till o ut. O nly a d ull, g re en is h tin ge a lo ng
th e horiz o n to th eir rig ht sh ow ed th at day bre ak w as dra w in g clo se r. H arry ,
hav in g b een th in kin g a b out th ousa n ds o f w iz ard s s p eed in g to w ard th e Q uid ditc h
World C up, s p ed u p t o w alk w ith M r. W easle y.
“S o h ow d oes e v ery one g et th ere w ith out a ll th e M uggle s n otic in g?” h e
ask ed .
“It's b een a m assiv e o rg an iz atio nal p ro ble m ,” sig hed M r. W easle y. “T he
tr o uble is , a b out a h undre d th ousa n d w iz ard s tu rn u p a t th e W orld C up, a n d o f
co urs e , w e ju st h av en 't g ot a m ag ic al s ite b ig e n ough to a cco m modate th em a ll.
There a re p la ces M uggle s c an 't p en etr a te , b ut im ag in e tr y in g to p ack a h undre d

th ousa n d w iz ard s in to D ia g on A lle y o r p la tf o rm n in e a n d th re e-q uarte rs . S o w e
had to f in d a n ic e d ese rte d m oor, a n d s e t u p a s m an y a n ti- M uggle p re cau tio ns a s
possib le . T he w hole M in is tr y 's b een w ork in g o n it fo r m onth s. F ir s t, o f c o urs e ,
we h av e to s ta g ger th e a rriv als . P eo ple w ith c h eap er tic k ets h av e to a rriv e tw o
week s b efo re h an d. A l im ite d n um ber u se M uggle t r a n sp ort, b ut w e c an 't h av e t o o
man y c lo ggin g u p th eir b use s a n d tr a in s— re m em ber, w iz ard s a re c o m in g fro m
all o ver th e w orld . S om e A ppara te , o f c o urs e , b ut w e h av e to s e t u p s a fe p oin ts
fo r th em to a p pear, w ell a w ay fro m M uggle s. I b elie v e th ere 's a h an dy w ood
th ey 'r e u sin g a s th e A pparitio n p oin t. F or th ose w ho d on't w an t to A ppara te , o r
can 't , w e u se P ortk ey s. T hey 'r e o bje cts th at a re u se d to tr a n sp ort w iz ard s fro m
one s p ot to a n oth er a t a p re arra n ged tim e. Y ou c an d o la rg e g ro ups a t a tim e if
you n eed to . T here h av e b een tw o h undre d P ortk ey s p la ced a t s tr a te g ic p oin ts
aro und B rita in , a n d th e n eare st o ne to u s is u p a t th e to p o f S to ats h ead H ill, s o
th at's w here w e'r e h ead ed .”
Mr. W easle y p oin te d a h ead o f th em , w here a la rg e b la ck m ass r o se b ey ond
th e v illa g e o f O tte ry S t. C atc h pole .
“W hat s o rt o f o bje cts a re P ortk ey s? ” s a id H arry c u rio usly .
“W ell, th ey can be an yth in g,” sa id M r. W easle y. “U nobtr u siv e th in gs,
obvio usly , s o M uggle s d on't g o p ic k in g th em u p a n d p la y in g w ith th em … stu ff
th ey 'l l j u st t h in k i s l itte r… ”
They tr u dged d ow n th e d ark , d an k la n e to w ard th e v illa g e, th e sile n ce
bro ken o nly b y th eir f o ots te p s. T he s k y lig hte n ed v ery s lo w ly a s th ey m ad e t h eir
way th ro ugh th e v illa g e, its in ky b la ck ness d ilu tin g to d eep est b lu e. H arry 's
han ds a n d f e et w ere f re ezin g. M r. W easle y k ep t c h eck in g h is w atc h .
They did n't hav e bre ath to sp are fo r ta lk in g as th ey beg an to clim b
Sto ats h ead H ill, s tu m blin g o ccasio nally in h id den r a b bit h ole s, s lip pin g o n th ic k
bla ck t u ff e ts o f g ra ss. E ach b re ath H arry t o ok w as s h arp i n h is c h est a n d h is l e g s
were s ta rtin g t o s e iz e u p w hen , a t l a st, h is f e et f o und l e v el g ro und.
“W hew ,” p an te d M r. W easle y, t a k in g o ff h is g la sse s a n d w ip in g t h em o n h is
sw eate r. “ W ell, w e'v e m ad e g ood t im e— we'v e g ot t e n m in ute s.”
Herm io ne c am e o ver t h e c re st o f t h e h ill l a st, c lu tc h in g a s titc h i n h er s id e.
“N ow w e ju st n eed th e P ortk ey,” sa id M r. W easle y, re p la cin g h is g la sse s
an d s q uin tin g a ro und a t t h e g ro und. “ It w on't b e b ig … C om e o n… ”
They sp re ad out, se arc h in g. T hey had only been at it fo r a co uple of
min ute s, h ow ev er, w hen a s h out r e n t t h e s till a ir.
“O ver h ere , A rth ur! O ver h ere , s o n, w e'v e g ot i t.”
Tw o ta ll f ig ure s w ere s ilh ouette d a g ain st th e s ta rry s k y o n th e o th er s id e o f
th e h illto p.
“A m os!” s a id M r. W easle y, s m ilin g a s h e s tr o de o ver to th e m an w ho h ad

sh oute d . T he r e st o f t h em f o llo w ed .
Mr. W easle y w as s h ak in g h an ds w ith a r u ddy-fa ced w iz ard w ith a s c ru bby
bro w n b eard , w ho w as h old in g a m old y-lo okin g o ld b oot i n h is o th er h an d.
“T his is A m os D ig gory , e v ery one,” sa id M r. W easle y. “ H e w ork s fo r th e
Dep artm en t fo r th e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l o f M ag ic al C re atu re s. A nd I th in k
you k now h is s o n, C ed ric ?”
Ced ric D ig gory w as a n e x tr e m ely h an dso m e b oy o f a ro und s e v en te en . H e
was C ap ta in a n d S eek er o f t h e H uff le p uff H ouse Q uid ditc h t e am a t H ogw arts .
“H i,” s a id C ed ric , l o okin g a ro und a t t h em a ll.
Every body s a id h i b ack e x cep t F re d a n d G eo rg e, w ho m ere ly n odded . T hey
had n ev er q uite fo rg iv en C ed ric fo r b eatin g th eir te am , G ry ff in dor, in th e fir s t
Quid ditc h m atc h o f t h e p re v io us y ear.
“L ong w alk , A rth ur? ” C ed ric 's fa th er ask ed . “N ot to o bad ,” sa id M r.
Weasle y. “ W e l iv e j u st o n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e v illa g e t h ere . Y ou?”
“H ad to g et u p a t tw o, d id n't w e, C ed ? I te ll y ou, I 'l l b e g la d w hen h e's g ot
his A pparitio n te st. S till … not c o m pla in in g … Quid ditc h W orld C up, w ould n't
mis s it fo r a sa ck fu l o f G alle o ns— an d th e tic k ets c o st a b out th at. M in d y ou,
lo oks lik e I g ot o ff e asy … ” A m os D ig gory p eere d g ood-n atu re d ly a ro und a t th e
th re e W easle y b oys, H arry , H erm io ne, a n d G in ny. “ A ll t h ese y ours , A rth ur? ”
“O h n o, o nly th e re d head s,” sa id M r. W easle y, p oin tin g o ut h is c h ild re n .
“T his i s H erm io ne, f rie n d o f R on's — an d H arry , a n oth er f rie n d— ”
“M erlin 's b eard ,” sa id A m os D ig gory , h is e y es w id en in g. “ H arry ? H arry
Potte r? ”
“E r— yeah ,” s a id H arry .
Harry w as u se d t o p eo ple l o okin g c u rio usly a t h im w hen t h ey m et h im , u se d
to th e w ay th eir e y es m oved a t o nce to th e lig htn in g s c ar o n h is f o re h ead , b ut it
alw ay s m ad e h im f e el u nco m fo rta b le .
“C ed 's ta lk ed a b out y ou, o f c o urs e ,” s a id A m os D ig gory . “ T old u s a ll a b out
pla y in g a g ain st y ou l a st y ear… I s a id t o h im , I s a id — Ced , t h at'l l b e s o m eth in g t o
te ll y our g ra n dch ild re n , t h at w ill… Y ou b eat H arry P otte r!”
Harry c o uld n't th in k o f a n y re p ly to th is , s o h e re m ain ed s ile n t. F re d a n d
Geo rg e w ere b oth s c o w lin g a g ain . C ed ric l o oked s lig htly e m barra sse d .
“H arry fe ll off his bro om , D ad ,” he m utte re d . I to ld you … it w as an
accid en t… ”
“Y es, b ut y ou d id n't fa ll o ff , d id y ou?” ro are d A m os g en ia lly , s la p pin g h is
so n o n h is b ack . “ A lw ay s m odest, o ur C ed , a lw ay s th e g en tle m an … but th e b est
man w on, I'm su re H arry 'd sa y th e sa m e, w ould n't y ou, e h ? O ne fa lls o ff h is
bro om , o ne s ta y s o n, y ou d on't n eed to b e a g en iu s to te ll w hic h o ne's th e b ette r
flie r!”

“M ust b e n early tim e,” sa id M r. W easle y q uic k ly , p ullin g o ut h is w atc h
ag ain . “ D o y ou k now w heth er w e'r e w aitin g f o r a n y m ore , A m os? ”
“N o, th e L oveg oods h av e b een th ere fo r a w eek a lr e ad y a n d th e F aw cetts
co uld n't g et tic k ets ,” s a id M r. D ig gory . “ T here a re n 't a n y m ore o f u s in th is a re a,
are t h ere ?”
“N ot t h at I k now o f,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ Y es, i t's a m in ute o ff … We'd b ette r
get r e ad y… ”
He l o oked a ro und a t H arry a n d H erm io ne.
“Y ou j u st n eed t o t o uch t h e P ortk ey, t h at's a ll, a f in ger w ill d o— ”
With d if f ic u lty , o w in g to th eir b ulk y b ack pack s, th e n in e o f th em c ro w ded
aro und t h e o ld b oot h eld o ut b y A m os D ig gory .
They all sto od th ere , in a tig ht cir c le , as a ch ill b re eze sw ep t o ver th e
hillto p. N obody s p oke. I t s u dden ly o ccu rre d t o H arry h ow o dd t h is w ould l o ok i f
a M uggle w ere to w alk u p h ere n ow … nin e p eo ple , tw o o f th em g ro w n m en ,
clu tc h in g t h is m an ky o ld b oot i n t h e s e m id ark ness, w aitin g…
“T hre e… ” m utte re d M r. W easle y, o ne e y e s till o n h is w atc h , t w o… o ne… ”
It h ap pen ed im med ia te ly : H arry f e lt a s th ough a h ook ju st b eh in d h is n av el
had b een s u dden ly je rk ed ir re sis tib ly f o rw ard . H is f e et le ft th e g ro und; h e c o uld
fe el R on a n d H erm io ne o n e ith er s id e o f h im , th eir s h ould ers b an gin g in to h is ;
th ey w ere all sp eed in g fo rw ard in a how l of w in d an d sw ir lin g co lo r; his
fo re fin ger w as stu ck to th e b oot as th ough it w as p ullin g h im m ag netic ally
onw ard a n d t h en —
His f e et s la m med in to th e g ro und; R on s ta g gere d in to h im a n d h e f e ll o ver;
th e P ortk ey h it t h e g ro und n ear h is h ead w ith a h eav y t h ud.
Harry lo oked u p. M r. W easle y, M r. D ig gory , a n d C ed ric w ere s till s ta n din g,
th ough l o okin g v ery w in dsw ep t; e v ery body e ls e w as o n t h e g ro und.
“S ev en p ast f iv e f ro m S to ats h ead H ill,” s a id a v oic e.

C H APT ER S E V EN
B A G M AN A ND C RO UCH
Harry d is e n ta n gle d h im se lf f ro m R on a n d g ot to h is f e et. T hey h ad a rriv ed
o n w hat a p peare d to b e a d ese rte d s tr e tc h o f m is ty m oor. I n f ro nt o f th em w as a
p air o f t ir e d a n d g ru m py-lo okin g w iz ard s, o ne o f w hom w as h old in g a l a rg e g old
w atc h , th e o th er a th ic k ro ll o f p arc h m en t a n d a q uill. B oth w ere d re sse d a s
M uggle s, th ough v ery in ex pertly : T he m an w ith th e w atc h w ore a tw eed su it
w ith t h ig h-le n gth g alo sh es; h is c o lle ag ue, a k ilt a n d a p onch o.
“M orn in g, B asil,” s a id M r. W easle y, p ic k in g u p th e b oot a n d h an din g it to
t h e k ilte d w iz ard , w ho th re w it in to a la rg e b ox o f u se d P ortk ey s b esid e h im ;
H arry co uld se e an old new sp ap er, an em pty drin ks can , an d a punctu re d
f o otb all.
“H ello th ere , A rth ur,” s a id B asil w earily . “ N ot o n d uty , e h ? I t's a ll r ig ht f o r
s o m e… W e'v e b een h ere a ll n ig ht… Y ou'd b ette r g et o ut o f th e w ay, w e'v e g ot a
b ig p arty c o m in g in f ro m th e B la ck F ore st a t f iv e f if te en . H an g o n, I 'l l f in d y our
c am psite … W easle y … Weasle y … ” H e c o nsu lte d h is p arc h m en t lis t. “ A bout a
q uarte r o f a m ile 's w alk o ver th ere , f ir s t f ie ld y ou c o m e to . S ite m an ag er's c alle d
M r. R oberts . D ig gory … se co nd f ie ld … ask f o r M r. P ay ne.”
“T han ks, B asil,” sa id M r. W easle y, a n d h e b eck oned e v ery one to fo llo w
h im .
They s e t o ff a cro ss t h e d ese rte d m oor, u nab le t o m ak e o ut m uch t h ro ugh t h e
m is t. A fte r a b out tw en ty m in ute s, a s m all s to ne c o tta g e n ex t to a g ate s w am in to
v ie w . B ey ond it, H arry c o uld ju st m ak e o ut th e g hostly s h ap es o f h undre d s a n d
h undre d s o f te n ts , r is in g u p th e g en tle s lo pe o f a la rg e f ie ld to w ard a d ark w ood
o n th e h oriz o n. T hey s a id g ood-b ye to th e D ig gory s a n d a p pro ach ed th e c o tta g e
d oor.
A m an w as s ta n din g i n t h e d oorw ay, l o okin g o ut a t t h e t e n ts . H arry k new a t
a g la n ce th at th is w as th e o nly re al M uggle fo r se v era l a cre s. W hen h e h eard
t h eir f o ots te p s, h e t u rn ed h is h ead t o l o ok a t t h em .
“M orn in g!” s a id M r. W easle y b rig htly .
“M orn in g,” s a id t h e M uggle .
“W ould y ou b e M r. R oberts ? ”
“A ye, I w ould ,” s a id M r. R oberts . “ A nd w ho'r e y ou?”
“W easle y — tw o t e n ts , b ooked a c o uple o f d ay s a g o?”
“A ye,” s a id M r. R oberts , c o nsu ltin g a lis t ta ck ed to th e d oor. “ Y ou'v e g ot a
s p ace u p b y t h e w ood t h ere . J u st t h e o ne n ig ht? ”

“T hat's i t,” s a id M r. W easle y.
“Y ou'l l b e p ay in g n ow , t h en ?” s a id M r. R oberts .
“A h— rig ht— certa in ly — ” s a id M r. W easle y. H e re tr e ate d a s h ort d is ta n ce
fro m th e co tta g e an d beck oned H arry to w ard him . “H elp m e, H arry ,” he
mutte re d , p ullin g a ro ll o f M uggle m oney fro m h is p ock et a n d s ta rtin g to p eel
th e n ote s a p art. “ T his o ne's a — a— a te n ? A h y es, I s e e th e little n um ber o n it
now … S o t h is i s a f iv e?”
“A tw en ty ,” H arry c o rre cte d h im in a n u nderto ne, u nco m fo rta b ly a w are o f
Mr. R oberts t r y in g t o c atc h e v ery w ord .
“A h y es, s o i t i s … I d on't k now , t h ese l ittle b its o f p ap er… ”
“Y ou fo re ig n?” s a id M r. R oberts a s M r. W easle y re tu rn ed w ith th e c o rre ct
note s.
“F ore ig n?” r e p eate d M r. W easle y, p uzzle d .
“Y ou'r e n ot th e f ir s t o ne w ho's h ad tr o uble w ith m oney,” s a id M r. R oberts ,
sc ru tin iz in g M r. W easle y c lo se ly . “ I h ad tw o tr y a n d p ay m e w ith g re at g old
co in s t h e s iz e o f h ubcap s t e n m in ute s a g o.”
“D id y ou r e ally ?” s a id M r. W easle y n erv ously .
Mr. R oberts r u m mag ed a ro und i n a t in f o r s o m e c h an ge.
“N ev er b een th is c ro w ded ,” h e s a id s u dden ly , lo okin g o ut o ver th e m is ty
fie ld a g ain . “ H undre d s o f p re -b ookin gs. P eo ple u su ally j u st t u rn u p… ”
“Is th at r ig ht? ” s a id M r. W easle y, h is h an d h eld o ut f o r h is c h an ge, b ut M r.
Roberts d id n't g iv e i t t o h im .
“A ye,” h e sa id th oughtf u lly . “P eo ple fro m all o ver. L oad s o f fo re ig ners .
And n ot j u st f o re ig ners . W eir d os, y ou k now ? T here 's a b lo ke w alk in g 'r o und i n a
kilt a n d a p onch o.”
“S hould n't h e?” s a id M r. W easle y a n xio usly
“It's lik e so m e so rt of… I dunno … lik e so m e so rt of ra lly ,” sa id M r.
Roberts . “ T hey a ll s e em t o k now e ach o th er. L ik e a b ig p arty .”
At th at m om en t, a w iz ard in p lu s-fo urs a p peare d o ut o f th in a ir n ex t to M r.
Roberts 's f ro nt d oor.
“O bliv ia te !” h e s a id s h arp ly , p oin tin g h is w an d a t M r. R oberts .
In sta n tly , M r. R oberts 's e y es s lid o ut o f fo cu s, h is b ro w s u nknitte d , a n d a
to ok o f d re am y u nco ncern f e ll o ver h is f a ce. H arry r e co gniz ed th e s y m pto m s o f
one w ho h ad j u st h ad h is m em ory m odif ie d .
“A m ap o f th e c am psite f o r y ou,” M r. R oberts s a id p la cid ly to M r. W easle y.
“A nd y our c h an ge.”
“T han ks v ery m uch ,” s a id M r. W easle y.
The w iz ard in plu s-fo urs acco m pan ie d th em to w ard th e gate to th e
cam psite . H e lo oked e x hau ste d : H is c h in w as b lu e w ith s tu bble a n d th ere w ere

deep p urp le sh ad ow s u nder h is e y es. O nce o ut o f e ars h ot o f M r. R oberts , h e
mutte re d to M r. W easle y, “B een h av in g a lo t o f tr o uble w ith h im . N eed s a
Mem ory C harm te n tim es a d ay to k eep h im h ap py. A nd L udo B ag m an 's n ot
help in g. T ro ttin g a ro und ta lk in g a b out B lu dgers a n d Q uaff le s a t th e to p o f h is
voic e, n ot a w orry a b out a n ti- M uggle s e cu rity B lim ey, I'l l b e g la d w hen th is is
over. S ee y ou l a te r, A rth ur.”
He D is a p para te d .
“I th ought M r. B ag m an w as H ead o f M ag ic al G am es an d S ports ,” sa id
Gin ny, lo okin g s u rp ris e d . “ H e s h ould k now b ette r th an to ta lk a b out B lu dgers
near M uggle s, s h ould n't h e?”
“H e s h ould ,” s a id M r. W easle y, s m ilin g, a n d l e ad in g t h em t h ro ugh t h e g ate s
in to th e c am psite , “ b ut L udo's a lw ay s b een a b it … well… la x a b out se cu rity .
You c o uld n't w is h f o r a m ore e n th usia stic h ead o f th e s p orts d ep artm en t th ough.
He p la y ed Q uid ditc h f o r E ngla n d h im se lf , y ou k now . A nd h e w as t h e b est B eate r
th e W im bourn e W asp s e v er h ad .”
They tr u dged u p th e m is ty fie ld b etw een lo ng ro w s o f te n ts . M ost lo oked
alm ost o rd in ary ; th eir o w ners h ad c le arly tr ie d to m ak e th em a s M uggle -lik e a s
possib le , b ut h ad s lip ped u p b y a d din g c h im ney s, o r b ellp ulls , o r w eath er v an es.
How ev er, h ere a n d t h ere w as a t e n t s o o bvio usly m ag ic al t h at H arry c o uld h ard ly
be s u rp ris e d th at M r. R oberts w as g ettin g s u sp ic io us. H alf w ay u p th e f ie ld s to od
an e x tr a v ag an t c o nfe ctio n o f str ip ed silk lik e a m in ia tu re p ala ce, w ith se v era l
liv e p eaco ck s te th ere d a t th e e n tr a n ce. A little f a rth er o n th ey p asse d a te n t th at
had th re e f lo ors a n d s e v era l tu rre ts ; a n d a s h ort w ay b ey ond th at w as a te n t th at
had a f ro nt g ard en a tta ch ed , c o m ple te w ith b ir d bath , s u ndia l, a n d f o unta in .
“A lw ay s t h e s a m e,” s a id M r. W easle y, s m ilin g. “ W e c an 't r e sis t s h ow in g o ff
when w e g et t o geth er. A h, h ere w e a re , l o ok, t h is i s u s.”
They h ad r e ach ed t h e v ery e d ge o f t h e w ood a t t h e t o p o f t h e f ie ld , a n d h ere
was an em pty sp ace, w ith a sm all sig n h am mere d in to th e g ro und th at re ad
WEEZLY .
“C ould n't h av e a b ette r s p ot! ” s a id M r. W easle y h ap pily . “ T he fie ld is ju st
on th e o th er s id e o f th e w ood th ere , w e'r e a s c lo se a s w e c o uld b e.” H e h ois te d
his b ack pack f ro m h is s h ould ers . “ R ig ht,” h e s a id e x cite d ly , “ n o m ag ic a llo w ed ,
str ic tly s p eak in g, n ot w hen w e'r e o ut in th ese n um bers o n M uggle la n d. W e'l l b e
puttin g th ese te n ts u p b y h an d! S hould n't b e to o d if f ic u lt… M uggle s d o it a ll th e
tim e… H ere , H arry , w here d o y ou r e ck on w e s h ould s ta rt? ”
Harry h ad n ev er b een c am pin g i n h is l if e ; t h e D urs le y s h ad n ev er t a k en h im
on a n y k in d o f h olid ay, p re fe rrin g to le av e h im w ith M rs . F ig g, a n o ld n eig hbor.
How ev er, h e a n d H erm io ne w ork ed o ut w here m ost o f t h e p ole s a n d p eg s s h ould
go, a n d t h ough M r. W easle y w as m ore o f a h in dra n ce t h an a h elp , b ecau se h e g ot

th oro ughly o vere x cite d w hen it c am e to u sin g th e m alle t, th ey fin ally m an ag ed
to e re ct a p air o f s h ab by t w o-m an t e n ts .
All o f th em s to od b ack to a d m ir e th eir h an diw ork . N obody lo okin g a t th ese
te n ts w ould g uess th ey b elo nged to w iz ard s, H arry th ought, b ut th e tr o uble w as
th at once B ill, C harlie , an d Perc y arriv ed , th ey w ould be a party of te n .
Herm io ne s e em ed to h av e s p otte d th is p ro ble m to o; s h e g av e H arry a q uiz zic al
lo ok a s M r. W easle y d ro pped t o h is h an ds a n d k nees a n d e n te re d t h e f ir s t t e n t.
“W e'l l b e a b it c ra m ped ,” h e c alle d , “ b ut I th in k w e'l l a ll s q ueeze in . C om e
an d h av e a l o ok.”
Harry b en t d ow n, d uck ed u nder th e te n t f la p , a n d f e lt h is ja w d ro p. H e h ad
walk ed in to w hat lo oked lik e a n o ld -fa sh io ned , th re e ro om fla t, c o m ple te w ith
bath ro om a n d k itc h en . O ddly e n ough, it w as fu rn is h ed in e x ac tly th e s a m e s o rt
of s ty le a s M rs . F ig g's h ouse : T here w ere c ro ch ete d c o vers o n th e m is m atc h ed
ch air s a n d a s tr o ng s m ell o f c ats .
“W ell, it's n ot fo r lo ng,” s a id M r. W easle y, m oppin g h is b ald p atc h w ith a
han dkerc h ie f a n d p eerin g in a t th e fo ur b unk b ed s th at s to od in th e b ed ro om . I
borro w ed th is fro m P erk in s a t th e o ff ic e. D oesn 't c am p m uch a n ym ore , p oor
fe llo w , h e's g ot l u m bag o.”
He p ic k ed u p t h e d usty k ettle a n d p eere d i n sid e i t. “ W e'l l n eed w ate r…
“T here 's a t a p m ark ed o n t h is m ap t h e M uggle g av e u s,” s a id R on, w ho h ad
fo llo w ed H arry in sid e th e te n t an d se em ed co m ple te ly unim pre sse d by its
ex tr a o rd in ary i n ner p ro portio ns. “ It's o n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e f ie ld .”
“W ell, w hy d on't y ou, H arry , an d H erm io ne g o an d g et u s so m e w ate r
th en ”— Mr. W easle y h an ded o ver t h e k ettle a n d a c o uple o f s a u cep an s— ”an d t h e
re st o f u s w ill g et s o m e w ood f o r a f ir e ?”
“B ut w e'v e g ot a n o ven ,” s a id R on. “ W hy c an 't w e j u st— ”
“R on, an ti- M uggle se cu rity !” sa id M r. W easle y, his fa ce sh in in g w ith
an tic ip atio n. “ W hen re al M uggle s c am p, th ey c o ok o n fir e s o utd oors . I'v e s e en
th em a t i t! ”
Afte r a q uic k to ur o f th e g ir ls ' te n t, w hic h w as slig htly sm alle r th an th e
boys', th ough w ith out th e s m ell o f c ats , H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne s e t o ff a cro ss
th e c am psite w ith t h e k ettle a n d s a u cep an s.
Now , w ith th e s u n n ew ly r is e n a n d th e m is t lif tin g, th ey c o uld s e e th e c ity
of te n ts th at s tr e tc h ed in e v ery d ir e ctio n. T hey m ad e th eir w ay s lo w ly th ro ugh
th e r o w s, s ta rin g e ag erly a ro und. I t w as o nly ju st d aw nin g o n H arry h ow m an y
witc h es a n d w iz ard s th ere m ust b e in th e w orld ; h e h ad n ev er re ally th ought
much a b out t h ose i n o th er c o untr ie s.
Their fe llo w cam pers w ere sta rtin g to w ak e up. F ir s t to stir w ere th e
fa m ilie s w ith sm all ch ild re n ; H arry h ad n ev er se en w itc h es an d w iz ard s th is

young befo re . A tin y boy no old er th an tw o w as cro uch ed outs id e a la rg e
pyra m id -s h ap ed te n t, h old in g a w an d a n d p okin g h ap pily a t a s lu g in th e g ra ss,
whic h w as s w ellin g s lo w ly to th e s iz e o f a s a la m i. A s th ey d re w le v el w ith h im ,
his m oth er c am e h urry in g o ut o f t h e t e n t.
“H ow m an y t im es, K ev in ? Y ou d on't — to uch — Dad dy's — wan d— yecch h! “
She h ad tr o dden o n th e g ia n t s lu g, w hic h b urs t. H er s c o ld in g c arrie d a fte r
th em o n th e s till a ir , m in glin g w ith th e little b oy's y ells — ”Y ou b ust s lu g! Y ou
bust s lu g!”
A s h ort w ay f a rth er o n, t h ey s a w t w o l ittle w itc h es, b are ly o ld er t h an K ev in ,
who w ere r id in g t o y b ro om stic k s t h at r o se o nly h ig h e n ough f o r t h e g ir ls ' t o es t o
sk im th e d ew y g ra ss. A M in is tr y w iz ard h ad a lr e ad y s p otte d th em ; a s h e h urrie d
past H arry , R on, an d H erm io ne h e m utte re d d is tr a cte d ly , “In b ro ad d ay lig ht!
Pare n ts h av in g a l ie -in , I s u ppose — ”
Here a n d th ere a d ult w iz ard s a n d w itc h es w ere e m erg in g fro m th eir te n ts
an d s ta rtin g to c o ok b re ak fa st. S om e, w ith fu rtiv e lo oks a ro und th em , c o nju re d
fir e s w ith th eir w an ds; o th ers w ere s tr ik in g m atc h es w ith d ubio us lo oks o n th eir
fa ces, a s th ough su re th is c o uld n't w ork . T hre e A fric an w iz ard s sa t in se rio us
co nvers a tio n, a ll o f t h em w earin g l o ng w hite r o bes a n d r o astin g w hat l o oked l ik e
a r a b bit o n a b rig ht p urp le f ir e , w hile a g ro up o f m id dle -a g ed A m eric an w itc h es
sa t g ossip in g h ap pily b en eath a sp an gle d b an ner str e tc h ed b etw een th eir te n ts
th at re ad : T H E S A LEM W IT C H ES' IN ST IT U TE. H arry cau ght sn atc h es o f
co nvers a tio n in str a n ge la n guag es fro m th e in sid e o f te n ts th ey p asse d , an d
th ough he co uld n't unders ta n d a w ord , th e to ne of ev ery sin gle voic e w as
ex cite d .
“E r— is i t m y e y es, o r h as e v ery th in g g one g re en ?” s a id R on.
It w asn 't j u st R on's e y es. T hey h ad w alk ed i n to a p atc h o f t e n ts t h at w ere a ll
co vere d w ith a th ic k g ro w th o f sh am ro ck s, so th at it lo oked a s th ough sm all,
oddly sh ap ed h illo ck s h ad sp ro ute d o ut o f th e e arth . G rin nin g fa ces c o uld b e
se en u nder th ose th at h ad th eir f la p s o pen . T hen , f ro m b eh in d th em , th ey h eard
th eir n am es.
“H arry ! R on! H erm io ne!”
It w as S eam us F in nig an , th eir f e llo w G ry ff in dor f o urth y ear. H e w as s ittin g
in f ro nt o f h is o w n s h am ro ck -c o vere d te n t, w ith a s a n dy-h air e d w om an w ho h ad
to b e h is m oth er, a n d h is b est f rie n d, D ean T hom as, a ls o o f G ry ff in dor.
“L ik e th e d eco ra tio ns? ” sa id S eam us, g rin nin g. “T he M in is tr y 's n ot to o
hap py.”
“A h, w hy s h ould n't w e s h ow o ur c o lo rs ? ” s a id M rs . F in nig an . “ Y ou s h ould
se e w hat th e B ulg aria n s hav e got dan glin g all over th eir te n ts . Y ou'l l be
su pportin g Ire la n d, o f c o urs e ?” sh e a d ded , e y ein g H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne

bead ily . W hen th ey h ad a ssu re d h er th at th ey w ere in deed su pportin g Ire la n d,
th ey s e t o ff a g ain , th ough, a s R on s a id , “ L ik e w e'd s a y a n yth in g e ls e s u rro unded
by th at lo t.” I w onder w hat th e B ulg aria n s h av e g ot d an glin g all o ver th eir
te n ts ? ” s a id H erm io ne.
“L et's g o a n d h av e a lo ok,” s a id H arry , p oin tin g to a la rg e p atc h o f te n ts
upfie ld , w here th e B ulg aria n f la g — white , g re en , a n d r e d — was f lu tte rin g in th e
bre eze.
The te n ts h ere h ad n ot b een b ed eck ed w ith p la n t lif e , b ut e ach a n d e v ery
one o f th em h ad th e s a m e p oste r a tta ch ed to it, a p oste r o f a v ery s u rly f a ce w ith
heav y b la ck e y eb ro w s. T he p ic tu re w as, o f c o urs e , m ovin g, b ut a ll it d id w as
blin k a n d s c o w l.
“K ru m ,” s a id R on q uie tly .
“W hat? ” s a id H erm io ne.
“K ru m !” s a id R on. “ V ik to r K ru m , t h e B ulg aria n S eek er!”
“H e lo oks re ally g ru m py,” sa id H erm io ne, lo okin g aro und at th e m an y
Kru m s b lin kin g a n d s c o w lin g a t t h em .
“'R eally g ru m py?” R on r a is e d h is e y es to th e h eav en s. “ W ho c are s w hat h e
lo oks lik e? H e's unbelie v ab le . H e's re ally young to o. O nly ju st eig hte en or
so m eth in g. H e's a g en iu s, y ou w ait u ntil t o nig ht, y ou'l l s e e.”
There w as a lr e ad y a s m all q ueu e f o r t h e t a p i n t h e c o rn er o f t h e f ie ld . H arry ,
Ron, a n d H erm io ne jo in ed it, rig ht b eh in d a p air o f m en w ho w ere h av in g a
heate d a rg um en t. O ne o f th em w as a v ery o ld w iz ard w ho w as w earin g a lo ng
flo w ery n ig htg ow n. T he o th er w as c le arly a M in is tr y w iz ard ; h e w as h old in g o ut
a p air o f p in str ip ed t r o use rs a n d a lm ost c ry in g w ith e x asp era tio n.
“Ju st p ut th em o n, A rc h ie , th ere 's a g ood c h ap . Y ou c an 't w alk a ro und lik e
th at, t h e M uggle a t t h e g ate 's a lr e ad y g ettin g s u sp ic io us—
I b ought th is in a M uggle s h op,” s a id th e o ld w iz ard s tu bborn ly . “ M uggle s
wear t h em .”
“M uggle w om en w ear t h em , A rc h ie , n ot t h e m en , t h ey w ear t h ese ,” s a id t h e
Min is tr y w iz ard , a n d h e b ra n dis h ed t h e p in str ip ed t r o use rs .
“I'm n ot p uttin g th em o n,” s a id o ld A rc h ie in in dig natio n. “ I lik e a h ealth y
bre eze 'r o und m y p riv ate s, t h an ks.”
Herm io ne w as o verc o m e w ith s u ch a s tr o ng fit o f th e g ig gle s a t th is p oin t
th at sh e h ad to d uck o ut o f th e q ueu e an d o nly re tu rn ed w hen A rc h ie h ad
co lle cte d h is w ate r a n d m oved a w ay.
Walk in g m ore s lo w ly n ow , b ecau se o f th e w eig ht o f th e w ate r, th ey m ad e
th eir w ay b ack th ro ugh th e c am psite . H ere a n d th ere , th ey sa w m ore fa m ilia r
fa ces: o th er H ogw arts s tu den ts w ith th eir f a m ilie s. O liv er W ood, th e o ld c ap ta in
of H arry 's H ouse Q uid ditc h te am , w ho h ad ju st le ft H ogw arts , d ra g ged H arry

over to h is p are n ts ' te n t to in tr o duce h im , a n d to ld h im e x cite d ly th at h e h ad ju st
been s ig ned to th e P uddle m ere U nite d re se rv e te am . N ex t th ey w ere h aile d b y
Ern ie M acm illa n , a H uff le p uff fo urth y ear, a n d a little fa rth er o n th ey s a w C ho
Chan g, a v ery p re tty g ir l w ho p la y ed S eek er o n th e R av en cla w te am . S he w av ed
an d s m ile d a t H arry , w ho s lo pped q uite a l o t o f w ate r d ow n h is f ro nt a s h e w av ed
back . M ore to s to p R on fro m s m ir k in g th an a n yth in g, H arry h urrie d ly p oin te d
out a l a rg e g ro up o f t e en ag ers w hom h e h ad n ev er s e en b efo re .
“W ho d 'y ou re ck on th ey a re ?” h e sa id . “ T hey d on't g o to H ogw arts , d o
th ey ?”
“'S pect t h ey g o t o s o m e f o re ig n s c h ool,” s a id R on. “ I k now t h ere a re o th ers .
Nev er m et a n yone w ho w en t to o ne, th ough. B ill h ad a p en frie n d a t a s c h ool in
Bra zil … th is w as y ears a n d y ears a g o … an d h e w an te d t o g o o n a n e x ch an ge t r ip
but M um a n d D ad c o uld n't a ff o rd i t. H is p en frie n d g ot a ll o ff e n ded w hen h e s a id
he w asn 't g oin g a n d s e n t h im a c u rs e d h at. I t m ad e h is e ars s h riv el u p.”
Harry l a u ghed b ut d id n't v oic e t h e a m azem en t h e f e lt a t h earin g a b out o th er
wiz ard in g sc h ools . H e su ppose d , n ow th at h e sa w re p re se n ta tiv es o f so m an y
natio nalitie s in th e cam psite , th at he had been stu pid nev er to re aliz e th at
Hogw arts c o uld n't b e th e o nly o ne. H e g la n ced a t H erm io ne, w ho lo oked u tte rly
unsu rp ris e d b y th e in fo rm atio n. N o d oubt sh e h ad ru n a cro ss th e n ew s a b out
oth er w iz ard in g s c h ools i n s o m e b ook o r o th er.
“Y ou'v e been ag es,” sa id G eo rg e w hen th ey fin ally got back to th e
Weasle y s' t e n ts .
“M et a f e w p eo ple ,” s a id R on, s e ttin g th e w ate r d ow n. “ Y ou'v e n ot g ot th at
fir e s ta rte d y et? ”
“D ad 's h av in g f u n w ith t h e m atc h es,” s a id F re d .
Mr. W easle y w as h av in g n o s u ccess a t a ll in lig htin g th e f ir e , b ut it w asn 't
fo r la ck o f tr y in g. S plin te re d m atc h es litte re d th e g ro und a ro und h im , b ut h e
lo oked a s t h ough h e w as h av in g t h e t im e o f h is l if e .
“O ops!” h e s a id a s h e m an ag ed to lig ht a m atc h a n d p ro m ptly d ro pped it in
su rp ris e .
“C om e h ere , M r. W easle y,” s a id H erm io ne k in dly , t a k in g t h e b ox f ro m h im ,
an d s h ow in g h im h ow t o d o i t p ro perly .
At la st th ey g ot th e f ir e lit, th ough it w as a t le ast a n oth er h our b efo re it w as
hot en ough to co ok an yth in g. T here w as p le n ty to w atc h w hile th ey w aite d ,
how ev er. T heir te n t s e em ed to b e p itc h ed r ig ht a lo ngsid e a k in d o f th oro ughfa re
to th e fie ld , a n d M in is tr y m em bers k ep t h urry in g u p a n d d ow n it, g re etin g M r.
Weasle y c o rd ia lly a s th ey p asse d . M r. W easle y k ep t u p a ru nnin g c o m men ta ry ,
main ly fo r H arry 's a n d H erm io ne's b en efit; h is o w n c h ild re n k new to o m uch
ab out t h e M in is tr y t o b e g re atly i n te re ste d .

“T hat w as C uth bert M ock rid ge, H ead o f th e G oblin L ia is o n O ff ic e… H ere
co m es G ilb ert W im ple ; h e's w ith th e C om mitte e o n E xperim en ta l C harm s; h e's
had th ose h orn s fo r a w hile n ow … H ello , A rn ie … Arn old P ease g ood, h e's a n
Obliv ia to r— mem ber o f th e A ccid en ta l M ag ic R ev ers a l S quad , y ou k now … a n d
th at's B ode a n d C ro ak er … th ey 'r e U nsp eak ab le s… ”
“T hey 'r e w hat? ”
“F ro m th e D ep artm en t o f M yste rie s, to p s e cre t, n o id ea w hat th ey g et u p
to … ”
At la st, th e fir e w as re ad y, an d th ey h ad ju st sta rte d co okin g eg gs an d
sa u sa g es w hen B ill, C harlie , a n d P erc y c am e s tr o llin g o ut o f th e w oods to w ard
th em .
“Ju st A ppara te d , D ad ,” s a id P erc y l o udly . “ A h, e x celle n t, l u nch !”
They w ere h alf w ay th ro ugh th eir p la te s o f e g gs a n d sa u sa g es w hen M r.
Weasle y ju m ped to h is fe et, w av in g a n d g rin nin g a t a m an w ho w as str id in g
to w ard t h em . “ A ha!” h e s a id . “ T he m an o f t h e m om en t! L udo!”
Ludo B ag m an w as e asily th e m ost n otic eab le p ers o n H arry h ad s e en s o f a r,
ev en in clu din g o ld A rc h ie in h is flo w ere d n ig htd re ss. H e w as w earin g lo ng
Quid ditc h ro bes in th ic k horiz o nta l str ip es of brig ht yello w an d bla ck . A n
en orm ous p ic tu re o f a w asp w as s p la sh ed a cro ss h is c h est. H e h ad th e lo ok o f a
pow erfu lly b uilt m an g one slig htly to se ed ; th e ro bes w ere str e tc h ed tig htly
acro ss a la rg e b elly h e su re ly h ad n ot h ad in th e d ay s w hen h e h ad p la y ed
Quid ditc h fo r E ngla n d. H is n ose w as sq uash ed (p ro bab ly b ro ken b y a str a y
Blu dger, H arry th ought) , b ut h is ro und b lu e ey es, sh ort b lo n d h air , an d ro sy
co m ple x io n m ad e h im l o ok l ik e a v ery o verg ro w n s c h oolb oy.
“A hoy th ere !” B ag m an c alle d h ap pily . H e w as w alk in g a s th ough h e h ad
sp rin gs atta ch ed to th e b alls o f h is fe et an d w as p la in ly in a sta te o f w ild
ex cite m en t.
“A rth ur, o ld m an ,” h e p uff e d a s h e r e ach ed th e c am pfir e , “ w hat a d ay, e h ?
What a d ay ! C ould w e h av e a sk ed f o r m ore p erfe ct w eath er? A c lo udle ss n ig ht
co m in g … an d h ard ly a h ic co ugh i n t h e a rra n gem en ts … N ot m uch f o r m e t o d o!”
Beh in d him , a gro up of hag gard -lo okin g M in is tr y w iz ard s ru sh ed past,
poin tin g a t th e d is ta n t e v id en ce o f s o m e s o rt o f a m ag ic al f ir e th at w as s e n din g
vio le t s p ark s t w en ty f e et i n to t h e a ir.
Perc y hurrie d fo rw ard with his han d outs tr e tc h ed . Appare n tly his
dis a p pro val o f th e w ay L udo B ag m an ra n h is d ep artm en t d id n ot p re v en t h im
fro m w an tin g t o m ak e a g ood i m pre ssio n.
“A h— yes,” sa id M r. W easle y, g rin nin g, “ th is is m y so n P erc y. H e's ju st
sta rte d a t th e M in is tr y — an d th is is F re d — no, G eo rg e, s o rry — th at's F re d — Bill,
Charlie , R on— my d au ghte r, G in ny a n d R on's frie n ds, H erm io ne G ra n ger a n d

Harry P otte r.”
Bag m an d id th e s m alle st o f d ouble ta k es w hen h e h eard H arry 's n am e, a n d
his e y es p erfo rm ed t h e f a m ilia r f lic k u pw ard t o t h e s c ar o n H arry 's f o re h ead .
“E very one,” M r. W easle y c o ntin ued , “ th is is L udo B ag m an , y ou k now w ho
he i s , i t's t h an ks t o h im w e'v e g ot s u ch g ood t ic k ets — ”
Bag m an b eam ed a n d w av ed h is h an d a s i f t o s a y i t h ad b een n oth in g.
“F an cy a flu tte r on th e m atc h , A rth ur? ” he sa id eag erly , jin glin g w hat
se em ed to b e a la rg e a m ount o f g old in th e p ock ets o f h is y ello w -a n d-b la ck
ro bes. “ I'v e a lr e ad y g ot R oddy P ontn er b ettin g m e B ulg aria w ill s c o re fir s t— I
off e re d h im n ic e o dds, c o nsid erin g Ire la n d's fro nt th re e a re th e str o ngest I'v e
se en i n y ears — an d l ittle A gath a T im ms h as p ut u p h alf s h are s i n h er e el f a rm o n
a w eek lo ng m atc h .”
“O h … go o n th en ,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ L et's s e e … a G alle o n o n I re la n d to
win ?”
“A G alle o n?” L udo B ag m an lo oked slig htly d is a p poin te d , b ut re co vere d
him se lf . “ V ery w ell, v ery w ell … an y o th er t a k ers ? ”
“T hey 'r e a b it y oung to b e g am blin g,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ M olly w ould n't
lik e— ”
“W e'l l b et th ir ty -s e v en G alle o ns, f if te en S ic k le s, th re e K nuts ,” s a id F re d a s
he a n d G eo rg e q uic k ly p oole d a ll th eir m oney, “ th at Ire la n d w in s— but V ik to r
Kru m g ets t h e S nitc h . O h a n d w e'l l t h ro w i n a f a k e w an d.”
“Y ou don't w an t to go sh ow in g M r. B ag m an ru bbis h lik e th at,” P erc y
his se d , b ut B ag m an d id n't se em to th in k th e w an d w as ru bbis h a t a ll; o n th e
co ntr a ry , h is b oyis h fa ce sh one w ith e x cite m en t a s h e to ok it fro m F re d , a n d
when th e w an d g av e a lo ud s q uaw k a n d tu rn ed in to a ru bber c h ic k en , B ag m an
ro are d w ith l a u ghte r.
“E xcelle n t! I hav en 't se en one th at co nvin cin g in years ! I'd pay fiv e
Galle o ns f o r t h at! ”
Perc y f ro ze i n a n a ttitu de o f s tu nned d is a p pro val.
“B oys,” sa id M r. W easle y u nder h is b re ath , “ I d on't w an t y ou b ettin g…
That's a ll y our s a v in gs … Y our m oth er— ”
“D on't b e a s p oils p ort, A rth ur!” b oom ed L udo B ag m an , r a ttlin g h is p ock ets
ex cite d ly . “ T hey 'r e o ld e n ough t o k now w hat t h ey w an t! Y ou r e ck on I re la n d w ill
win b ut K ru m 'l l g et th e S nitc h ? N ot a c h an ce, b oys, n ot a c h an ce… I 'l l g iv e y ou
ex celle n t o dds o n th at o ne … W e'l l a d d f iv e G alle o ns f o r th e f u nny w an d, th en ,
sh all w e… ”
Mr. W easle y l o oked o n h elp le ssly a s L udo B ag m an w hip ped o ut a n ote b ook
an d q uill a n d b eg an j o ttin g d ow n t h e t w in s' n am es.
“C heers ,” s a id G eo rg e, ta k in g th e s lip o f p arc h m en t B ag m an h an ded h im

an d tu ck in g it a w ay in to th e fro nt o f h is ro bes. B ag m an tu rn ed m ost c h eerfu lly
back t o M r. W easle y.
“C ould n't d o m e a b re w , I su ppose ? I'm k eep in g an ey e o ut fo r B arty
Cro uch . M y B ulg aria n opposite num ber's m ak in g dif f ic u ltie s, an d I can 't
unders ta n d a w ord h e's s a y in g. B arty 'l l b e a b le to s o rt it o ut. H e s p eak s a b out a
hundre d a n d f if ty l a n guag es.”
“M r. C ro uch ?” sa id P erc y, su dden ly ab an donin g his lo ok of poker- s tif f
dis a p pro val an d positiv ely w rith in g w ith ex cite m en t. “H e sp eak s over tw o
hundre d ! M erm is h a n d G obble d eg ook a n d T ro ll… ”
“A nyone c an s p eak T ro ll,” s a id F re d d is m is siv ely . “ A ll y ou h av e to d o is
poin t a n d g ru nt.”
Perc y th re w F re d a n e x tr e m ely n asty lo ok a n d s to ked th e f ir e v ig oro usly to
brin g t h e k ettle b ack t o t h e b oil.
“A ny n ew s o f B erth a J o rk in s y et, L udo?” M r. W easle y a sk ed a s B ag m an
se ttle d h im se lf d ow n o n t h e g ra ss b esid e t h em a ll.
“N ot a d ic k y b ir d ,” s a id B ag m an c o m fo rta b ly . “ B ut s h e'l l tu rn u p. P oor o ld
Berth a … mem ory l ik e a l e ak y c au ld ro n a n d n o s e n se o f d ir e ctio n. L ost, y ou t a k e
my w ord f o r it. S he'l l w an der b ack in to t h e o ff ic e s o m etim e in O cto ber, t h in kin g
it's s till J u ly .”
“Y ou d on't th in k it m ig ht b e tim e to s e n d s o m eo ne to lo ok fo r h er? ” M r.
Weasle y s u ggeste d t e n ta tiv ely a s P erc y h an ded B ag m an h is t e a.
“B arty C ro uch k eep s s a y in g th at,” s a id B ag m an , h is ro und e y es w id en in g
in nocen tly , “ b ut w e re ally c an 't sp are a n yone a t th e m om en t. O h— ta lk o f th e
dev il! B arty !”
A w iz ard h ad ju st A ppara te d a t th eir f ir e sid e, a n d h e c o uld n ot h av e m ad e
more o f a c o ntr a st w ith L udo B ag m an , s p ra w le d o n th e g ra ss in h is o ld W asp
ro bes. B arty C ro uch w as a s tif f , u prig ht, e ld erly m an , d re sse d in a n im peccab ly
cris p su it an d tie . T he p artin g in h is sh ort g ra y h air w as alm ost u nnatu ra lly
str a ig ht, a n d h is n arro w to oth bru sh m usta ch e lo oked a s th ough h e tr im med it
usin g a s lid e r u le . H is s h oes w ere v ery h ig hly p olis h ed . H arry c o uld s e e a t o nce
why P erc y id oliz ed h im . P erc y w as a g re at b elie v er in rig id ly fo llo w in g ru le s,
an d M r. C ro uch h ad c o m plie d w ith t h e r u le a b out M uggle d re ssin g s o t h oro ughly
th at h e c o uld h av e p asse d f o r a b an k m an ag er; H arry d oubte d e v en U ncle V ern on
would h av e s p otte d h im f o r w hat h e r e ally w as.
“P ull u p a b it o f g ra ss, B arry ,” s a id L udo b rig htly , p attin g t h e g ro und b esid e
him .
“N o th an k y ou, L udo,” s a id C ro uch , a n d th ere w as a b ite o f im patie n ce in
his v oic e. “ I'v e b een lo okin g fo r y ou e v ery w here . T he B ulg aria n s a re in sis tin g
we a d d a n oth er t w elv e s e ats t o t h e T op B ox.”

“O h i s t h at w hat t h ey 'r e a fte r? ” s a id B ag m an . I t h ought t h e c h ap w as a sk in g
to b orro w a p air o f t w eezers . B it o f a s tr o ng a ccen t.”
“M r. C ro uch !” sa id P erc y b re ath le ssly , su nk in to a k in d o f h alf b ow th at
mad e h im l o ok l ik e a h unch back . “ W ould y ou l ik e a c u p o f t e a?”
“O h,” s a id M r. C ro uch , l o okin g o ver a t P erc y i n m ild s u rp ris e . “ Y es— th an k
you, W eath erb y.”
Fre d a n d G eo rg e c h oked in to th eir o w n c u ps. P erc y, v ery p in k a ro und th e
ears , b usie d h im se lf w ith t h e k ettle .
“O h a n d I 'v e b een w an tin g a w ord w ith y ou to o, A rth ur,” s a id M r. C ro uch ,
his s h arp e y es f a llin g u pon M r. W easle y. “ A li B ash ir 's o n th e w arp ath . H e w an ts
a w ord w ith y ou a b out y our e m barg o o n f ly in g c arp ets .”
Mr. W easle y h eav ed a d eep s ig h.
“I s e n t h im a n o w l a b out th at ju st la st w eek . I f I 'v e to ld h im o nce I 'v e to ld
him a h undre d t im es: C arp ets a re d efin ed a s a M uggle A rtif a ct b y t h e R eg is tr y o f
Pro sc rib ed C harm ab le O bje cts , b ut w ill h e l is te n ?”
“I d oubt it,” s a id M r. C ro uch , a ccep tin g a c u p f ro m P erc y. “ H e's d esp era te
to e x port h ere .”
“W ell, t h ey 'l l n ev er r e p la ce b ro om s i n B rita in , w ill t h ey ?” s a id B ag m an .
“A li th in ks th ere 's a n ic h e in th e m ark et fo r a fa m ily v eh ic le , sa id M r.
Cro uch . “ I r e m em ber m y g ra n dfa th er h ad a n A xm in ste r th at c o uld s e at tw elv e—
but t h at w as b efo re c arp ets w ere b an ned , o f c o urs e .”
He sp oke a s th ough h e w an te d to le av e n obody in a n y d oubt th at a ll h is
an cesto rs h ad a b id ed s tr ic tly b y t h e l a w .
“S o, b een k eep in g b usy , B arty ?” s a id B ag m an b re ezily .
“F air ly ,” sa id M r. Cro uch dry ly . “O rg an iz in g Portk ey s acro ss fiv e
co ntin en ts i s n o m ean f e at, L udo.”
“I e x pect y ou'l l b oth b e g la d w hen t h is i s o ver? ” s a id M r. W easle y.
Ludo B ag m an l o oked s h ock ed .
“G la d ! D on't k now w hen I'v e h ad m ore fu n… S till, it's n ot a s th ough w e
hav en 't g ot a n yth in g to to ok fo rw ard to , e h , B arty ? E h? P le n ty le ft to o rg an iz e,
eh ?”
Mr. C ro uch r a is e d h is e y eb ro w s a t B ag m an .
“W e a g re ed n ot t o m ak e t h e a n nouncem en t u ntil a ll t h e d eta ils — ”
“O h d eta ils !” s a id B ag m an , w av in g th e w ord a w ay lik e a c lo ud o f m id ges.
“T hey 'v e s ig ned , h av en 't th ey ? T hey 'v e a g re ed , h av en 't th ey ? I b et y ou a n yth in g
th ese k id s'l l k now s o on e n ough a n yw ay. I m ean , i t's h ap pen in g a t H ogw arts — ”
“L udo, w e need to m eet th e B ulg aria n s, you know ,” sa id M r. C ro uch
sh arp ly , c u ttin g B ag m an 's r e m ark s s h ort. “ T han k y ou f o r t h e t e a, W eath erb y.”
He p ush ed h is u ndru nk te a b ack at P erc y an d w aite d fo r L udo to ris e ;

Bag m an s tr u ggle d to h is f e et, s w ig gin g d ow n th e la st o f h is te a, th e g old in h is
pock ets c h in kin g m errily .
“S ee y ou a ll la te r!” h e sa id . “ Y ou'l l b e u p in th e T op B ox w ith m e— I'm
co m men ta tin g!” H e w av ed , B arty C ro uch nodded cu rtly , an d both of th em
Dis a p para te d .
“W hat's h ap pen in g a t H ogw arts , D ad ?” s a id F re d a t o nce. “ W hat w ere th ey
ta lk in g a b out? ”
“Y ou'l l f in d o ut s o on e n ough,” s a id M r. W easle y, s m ilin g.
“It's cla ssif ie d in fo rm atio n, until su ch tim e as th e M in is tr y decid es to
re le ase i t,” s a id P erc y s tif f ly . “ M r. C ro uch w as q uite r ig ht n ot t o d is c lo se i t.”
“O h s h ut u p, W eath erb y,” s a id F re d .
A s e n se o f e x cite m en t ro se lik e a p alp ab le c lo ud o ver th e c am psite a s th e
afte rn oon w ore o n. B y d usk , th e s till s u m mer a ir its e lf s e em ed to b e q uiv erin g
with a n tic ip atio n, a n d a s d ark ness sp re ad lik e a c u rta in o ver th e th ousa n ds o f
waitin g w iz ard s, th e la st v estig es o f p re te n ce d is a p peare d : th e M in is tr y s e em ed
to h av e b ow ed to th e in ev ita b le a n d s to pped f ig htin g th e s ig ns o f b la ta n t m ag ic
now b re ak in g o ut e v ery w here .
Sale sm en w ere A ppara tin g e v ery f e w f e et, c arry in g tr a y s a n d p ush in g c arts
fu ll of ex tr a o rd in ary m erc h an dis e . T here w ere lu m in ous ro se tte s— gre en fo r
Ire la n d, re d fo r B ulg aria — whic h w ere sq uealin g th e nam es of th e pla y ers ,
poin te d g re en h ats b ed eck ed w ith d an cin g s h am ro ck s, B ulg aria n s c arv es a d orn ed
with lio ns th at r e ally r o are d , f la g s f ro m b oth c o untr ie s th at p la y ed th eir n atio nal
an th em s a s t h ey w ere w av ed ; t h ere w ere t in y m odels o f F ir e b olts t h at r e ally f le w ,
an d c o lle ctib le f ig ure s o f f a m ous p la y ers , w hic h s tr o lle d a cro ss th e p alm o f y our
han d, p re en in g t h em se lv es.
“B een sa v in g m y p ock et m oney a ll su m mer fo r th is ,” R on to ld H arry a s
th ey an d H erm io ne str o lle d th ro ugh th e sa le sm en , b uyin g so uven ir s . T hough
Ron p urc h ase d a d an cin g s h am ro ck h at a n d a la rg e g re en r o se tte , h e a ls o b ought
a sm all fig ure of V ik to r K ru m , th e B ulg aria n S eek er. T he m in ia tu re K ru m
walk ed b ack w ard a n d f o rw ard o ver R on's h an d, s c o w lin g u p a t th e g re en r o se tte
ab ove h im .
“W ow , lo ok a t th ese !” s a id H arry , h urry in g o ver to a c art p ile d h ig h w ith
what l o oked l ik e b ra ss b in ocu la rs , e x cep t t h at t h ey w ere c o vere d w ith a ll s o rts o f
weir d k nobs a n d d ia ls .
“O m nio cu la rs ,” s a id t h e s a le sw iz ard e ag erly . “ Y ou c an r e p la y a ctio n … slo w
ev ery th in g d ow n … an d th ey fla sh u p a p la y -b ypla y b re ak dow n if y ou n eed it.
Barg ain — te n G alle o ns e ach .”
“W is h I had n't bought th is now ,” sa id R on, gestu rin g at his dan cin g
sh am ro ck h at a n d g azin g l o ngin gly a t t h e O m nio cu la rs .

“T hre e p air s ,” s a id H arry f ir m ly t o t h e w iz ard .
“N o— don't b oth er,” s a id R on, g oin g r e d . H e w as a lw ay s to uch y a b out th e
fa ct th at H arry , w ho h ad in herite d a s m all fo rtu ne fro m h is p are n ts , h ad m uch
more m oney t h an h e d id .
“Y ou w on't b e g ettin g a n yth in g fo r C hris tm as,” H arry to ld h im , th ru stin g
Om nio cu la rs i n to h is a n d H erm io ne's h an ds. “ F or a b out t e n y ears , m in d.”
“F air e n ough,” s a id R on, g rin nin g.
“O ooh, th an ks, H arry ,” sa id H erm io ne. “ A nd I'l l g et u s so m e p ro gra m s,
lo ok— ”
Their m oney b ag s c o nsid era b ly lig hte r, th ey w en t b ack to th e te n ts . B ill,
Charlie , a n d G in ny w ere a ll s p ortin g g re en ro se tte s to o, a n d M r. W easle y w as
carry in g an Iris h fla g . F re d an d G eo rg e h ad n o so uven ir s as th ey h ad g iv en
Bag m an a ll t h eir g old .
And th en a d eep , b oom in g g ong so unded so m ew here b ey ond th e w oods,
an d a t o nce, g re en a n d r e d l a n te rn s b la zed i n to l if e i n t h e t r e es, l ig htin g a p ath t o
th e f ie ld .
“It's t im e!” s a id M r. W easle y, l o okin g a s e x cite d a s a n y o f t h em . “ C om e o n,
le t's g o!”

C H APT ER E IG HT
T H E Q UID DIT C H W ORLD C UP
Clu tc h in g th eir p urc h ase s, M r. W easle y in th e le ad , th ey a ll h urrie d in to th e
w ood, f o llo w in g th e la n te rn -lit tr a il. T hey c o uld h ear th e s o unds o f th ousa n ds o f
p eo ple m ovin g aro und th em , sh outs an d la u ghte r, sn atc h es of sin gin g. T he
a tm osp here o f fe v eris h e x cite m en t w as h ig hly in fe ctio us; H arry c o uld n't sto p
g rin nin g. T hey w alk ed th ro ugh th e w ood f o r tw en ty m in ute s, ta lk in g a n d jo kin g
l o udly , u ntil a t la st th ey e m erg ed o n th e o th er s id e a n d f o und th em se lv es in th e
s h ad ow o f a g ig an tic sta d iu m . T hough H arry c o uld se e o nly a fra ctio n o f th e
i m men se g old w alls s u rro undin g t h e f ie ld , h e c o uld t e ll t h at t e n c ath ed ra ls w ould
f it c o m fo rta b ly i n sid e i t.
“S eats a h undre d th ousa n d,” s a id M r. W easle y, s p ottin g th e a w estr u ck lo ok
o n H arry 's f a ce. “ M in is tr y t a sk f o rc e o f f iv e h undre d h av e b een w ork in g o n i t a ll
y ear. M uggle R ep ellin g C harm s o n e v ery in ch o f it. E very tim e M uggle s h av e
g ot an yw here near here all year, th ey 'v e su dden ly re m em bere d urg en t
a p poin tm en ts an d had to dash aw ay ag ain … ble ss th em ,” he ad ded fo ndly ,
l e ad in g t h e w ay t o w ard t h e n eare st e n tr a n ce, w hic h w as a lr e ad y s u rro unded b y a
s w arm o f s h outin g w itc h es a n d w iz ard s.
“P rim e se ats !” sa id th e M in is tr y w itc h a t th e e n tr a n ce w hen sh e c h eck ed
t h eir t ic k ets . “ T op B ox! S tr a ig ht u psta ir s , A rth ur, a n d a s h ig h a s y ou c an g o.”
The s ta ir s in to th e s ta d iu m w ere c arp ete d in ric h p urp le . T hey c la m bere d
u pw ard w ith t h e r e st o f t h e c ro w d, w hic h s lo w ly f ilte re d a w ay t h ro ugh d oors i n to
t h e s ta n ds to th eir le ft a n d rig ht. M r. W easle y 's p arty k ep t c lim bin g, a n d a t la st
t h ey r e ach ed th e to p o f th e s ta ir c ase a n d f o und th em se lv es in a s m all b ox, s e t a t
t h e h ig hest p oin t o f t h e s ta d iu m a n d s itu ate d e x actly h alf w ay b etw een t h e g old en
g oal p osts . A bout tw en ty p urp le -a n d-g ilt ch air s sto od in tw o ro w s h ere , an d
H arry , filin g in to th e fro nt s e ats w ith th e W easle y s, lo oked d ow n u pon a s c en e
t h e l ik es o f w hic h h e c o uld n ev er h av e i m ag in ed .
A h undre d th ousa n d w itc h es a n d w iz ard s w ere ta k in g th eir p la ces in th e
s e ats , w hic h ro se in le v els a ro und th e lo ng o val fie ld . E very th in g w as s u ff u se d
w ith a m yste rio us g old en lig ht, w hic h s e em ed to c o m e fro m th e s ta d iu m its e lf .
T he f ie ld lo oked s m ooth a s v elv et f ro m th eir lo fty p ositio n. A t e ith er e n d o f th e
f ie ld sto od th re e g oal h oops, fif ty fe et h ig h; rig ht o pposite th em , alm ost at
H arry 's e y e l e v el, w as a g ig an tic b la ck board . G old w ritin g k ep t d ash in g a cro ss i t
a s t h ough a n i n vis ib le g ia n t's h an d w ere s c ra w lin g u pon t h e b la ck board a n d t h en
w ip in g it o ff a g ain ; w atc h in g it, H arry s a w th at it w as fla sh in g a d vertis e m en ts

acro ss t h e f ie ld .
The B lu eb ottle : A B ro om f o r A ll t h e F am ily — sa fe , r e lia b le , a n d w ith B uilt-
in A nti- B urg le r B uzzer … Mrs . S how er's A ll P urp ose M ag ic al M ess R em over:
No P ain , N o S ta in ! … Gla d ra g s W iz ard w ear— London, P aris , H ogsm ead e…
Harry to re h is e y es a w ay f ro m th e s ig n a n d lo oked o ver h is s h ould er to s e e
who e ls e w as s h arin g th e b ox w ith th em . S o f a r it w as e m pty , e x cep t f o r a tin y
cre atu re s ittin g in th e s e co nd fro m la st s e at a t th e e n d o f th e ro w b eh in d th em .
The c re atu re , w hose le g s w ere s o s h ort th ey s tu ck o ut in f ro nt o f it o n th e c h air ,
was w earin g a te a to w el d ra p ed lik e a to ga, a n d it h ad its fa ce h id den in its
han ds. Y et t h ose l o ng, b atlik e e ars w ere o ddly f a m ilia r…
“D obby?” s a id H arry i n cre d ulo usly .
The tin y c re atu re lo oked u p a n d s tr e tc h ed its fin gers , re v ealin g e n orm ous
bro w n e y es a n d a n ose th e e x act siz e a n d sh ap e o f a la rg e to m ato . It w asn 't
Dobby— it w as, h ow ev er, u nm is ta k ab ly a h ouse -e lf , a s H arry 's f rie n d D obby h ad
been . H arry h ad s e t D obby f re e f ro m h is o ld o w ners , t h e M alf o y f a m ily .
“D id s ir ju st c all m e D obby?” s q ueak ed th e e lf c u rio usly f ro m b etw een its
fin gers . Its v oic e w as h ig her e v en th an D obby's h ad b een , a te en y, q uiv erin g
sq ueak o f a v oic e, a n d H arry s u sp ecte d th ough it w as v ery h ard to te ll w ith a
house -e lf — th at t h is o ne m ig ht j u st b e f e m ale . R on a n d H erm io ne s p un a ro und i n
th eir s e ats to lo ok. T hough th ey h ad h eard a lo t a b out D obby fro m H arry , th ey
had n ev er a ctu ally m et h im . E ven M r. W easle y l o oked a ro und i n i n te re st.
“S orry ,” H arry t o ld t h e e lf , “ I j u st t h ought y ou w ere s o m eo ne I k new .”
“B ut I k now s D obby t o o, s ir !” s q ueak ed t h e e lf . S he w as s h ie ld in g h er f a ce,
as t h ough b lin ded b y l ig ht, t h ough t h e T op B ox w as n ot b rig htly l it. “ M y n am e i s
Win ky, s ir — an d y ou, s ir — ” H er d ark b ro w n e y es w id en ed to th e s iz e o f s id e
pla te s a s t h ey r e ste d u pon H arry 's s c ar. “ Y ou i s s u re ly H arry P otte r!”
“Y eah , I a m ,” s a id H arry .
“B ut D obby ta lk s o f y ou a ll th e tim e, s ir !” s h e s a id , lo w erin g h er h an ds
very s lig htly a n d l o okin g a w estr u ck .
“H ow i s h e?” s a id H arry . “ H ow 's f re ed om s u itin g h im ?”
“A h, s ir ,” s a id W in ky, s h ak in g h er h ead , “ ah s ir , m ean in g n o d is re sp ect, s ir ,
but I i s n ot s u re y ou d id D obby a f a v or, s ir , w hen y ou i s s e ttin g h im f re e.”
“W hy?” s a id H arry , t a k en a b ack . “ W hat's w ro ng w ith h im ?”
“F re ed om is g oin g to D obby's h ead , s ir , “ s a id W in ky s a d ly . “ Id eas a b ove
his s ta tio n, s ir. C an 't g et a n oth er p ositio n, s ir.”
“W hy n ot? ” s a id H arry .
Win ky lo w ere d h er v oic e b y a h alf -o cta v e a n d w his p ere d , “ H e is w an tin g
pay in g f o r h is w ork , s ir.”
“P ay in g?” s a id H arry b la n kly . “ W ell— why s h ould n't h e b e p aid ?”

Win ky lo oked q uite h orrif ie d a t th e id ea a n d c lo se d h er fin gers s lig htly s o
th at h er f a ce w as h alf -h id den a g ain .
“H ouse -e lv es is n ot p aid , s ir !” s h e s a id in a m uff le d s q ueak . “ N o, n o, n o. I
sa y s t o D obby, I s a y s, g o f in d y ours e lf a n ic e f a m ily a n d s e ttle d ow n, D obby. H e
is g ettin g u p t o a ll s o rts o f h ig h j in ks, s ir , w hat i s u nbeco m in g t o a h ouse -e lf . Y ou
goes r a ck etin g a ro und lik e th is , D obby, I s a y s, a n d n ex t th in g I h ear y ou's u p in
fro nt o f th e D ep artm en t fo r th e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l o f M ag ic al C re atu re s,
lik e s o m e c o m mon g oblin .”
“W ell, i t's a b out t im e h e h ad a b it o f f u n,” s a id H arry .
“H ouse -e lv es i s n ot s u ppose d t o h av e f u n, H arry P otte r,” s a id W in ky f ir m ly ,
fro m b eh in d h er h an ds. “H ouse -e lv es d oes w hat th ey is to ld . I is n ot lik in g
heig hts a t a ll, H arry P otte r” — sh e g la n ced t o w ard t h e e d ge o f t h e b ox a n d g ulp ed
—”b ut m y m aste r s e n ds m e t o t h e T op B ox a n d I c o m es, s ir.”
“W hy's h e se n t y ou u p h ere , if h e k now s y ou d on't lik e h eig hts ? ” sa id
Harry , f ro w nin g.
“M aste r— maste r w an ts m e to sa v e h im a se at, H arry P otte r. H e is v ery
busy ,” s a id W in ky, t iltin g h er h ead t o w ard t h e e m pty s p ace b esid e h er. “ W in ky i s
wis h in g s h e is b ack in m aste r's te n t, H arry P otte r, b ut W in ky d oes w hat s h e is
to ld . W in ky i s a g ood h ouse -e lf .”
She g av e th e e d ge o f th e b ox a n oth er frig hte n ed lo ok a n d h id h er e y es
co m ple te ly a g ain . H arry t u rn ed b ack t o t h e o th ers .
“S o t h at's a h ouse -e lf ? ” R on m utte re d . “ W eir d t h in gs, a re n 't t h ey ?”
“D obby w as w eir d er,” s a id H arry f e rv en tly .
Ron p ulle d o ut h is O m nio cu la rs a n d s ta rte d te stin g th em , s ta rin g d ow n in to
th e c ro w d o n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e s ta d iu m .
“W ild !” h e s a id , tw id dlin g th e r e p la y k nob o n th e s id e. I c an m ak e th at o ld
blo ke d ow n t h ere p ic k h is n ose a g ain … an d a g ain … an d a g ain … ”
Herm io ne, m ean w hile , w as sk im min g e ag erly th ro ugh h er v elv etc o vere d ,
ta sse le d p ro gra m .
“'A d is p la y f ro m t h e t e am m asc o ts w ill p re ced e t h e m atc h ," ' s h e r e ad a lo ud.
“O h th at's alw ay s w orth w atc h in g,” sa id M r. W easle y. “N atio nal te am s
brin g c re atu re s f ro m t h eir n ativ e l a n d, y ou k now , t o p ut o n a b it o f a s h ow .”
The b ox f ille d g ra d ually a ro und th em o ver th e n ex t h alf h our. M r. W easle y
kep t sh ak in g h an ds w ith p eo ple w ho w ere o bvio usly v ery im porta n t w iz ard s.
Perc y ju m ped to h is f e et s o o fte n th at h e lo oked a s th ough h e w ere tr y in g to s it
on a h ed geh og. W hen C orn eliu s F udge, th e M in is te r o f M ag ic h im se lf , a rriv ed ,
Perc y b ow ed s o lo w th at h is g la sse s f e ll o ff a n d s h atte re d . H ig hly e m barra sse d ,
he re p air e d th em w ith h is w an d a n d th ere afte r re m ain ed in h is se at, th ro w in g
je alo us lo oks a t H arry , w hom C orn eliu s F udge h ad g re ete d lik e a n o ld frie n d.

They h ad m et b efo re , a n d F udge s h ook H arry 's h an d in a f a th erly f a sh io n, a sk ed
how h e w as, a n d i n tr o duced h im t o t h e w iz ard s o n e ith er s id e o f h im .
“H arry P otte r, y ou k now ,” h e to ld th e B ulg aria n m in is te r lo udly , w ho w as
wearin g sp le n did ro bes o f b la ck v elv et tr im med w ith g old a n d d id n't se em to
unders ta n d a w ord o f E nglis h . “ H arry P otte r … oh c o m e o n n ow , y ou k now w ho
he i s … th e b oy w ho s u rv iv ed Y ou-K now -W ho … you d o k now w ho h e i s — ”
The B ulg aria n w iz ard su dden ly sp otte d H arry 's sc ar a n d sta rte d g ab blin g
lo udly a n d e x cite d ly , p oin tin g a t i t.
“K new w e'd g et th ere in th e e n d,” sa id F udge w earily to H arry . “ I'm n o
gre at s h ak es a t la n guag es; I n eed B arty C ro uch fo r th is s o rt o f th in g. A h, I s e e
his h ouse -e lf 's s a v in g h im a s e at… G ood jo b to o, th ese B ulg aria n b lig hte rs h av e
been t r y in g t o c ad ge a ll t h e b est p la ces … ah , a n d h ere 's L uciu s!”
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne tu rn ed q uic k ly . E dgin g a lo ng th e s e co nd r o w to
th re e s till- e m pty s e ats r ig ht b eh in d M r. W easle y w ere n one o th er t h an D obby t h e
house -e lf 's fo rm er o w ners : L uciu s M alf o y; h is s o n, D ra co ; a n d a w om an H arry
su ppose d m ust b e D ra co 's m oth er.
Harry an d D ra co M alf o y had been en em ie s ev er sin ce th eir very fir s t
jo urn ey t o H ogw arts . A p ale b oy w ith a p oin te d f a ce a n d w hite -b lo nd h air , D ra co
gre atly r e se m ble d h is f a th er. H is m oth er w as b lo nde t o o; t a ll a n d s lim , s h e w ould
hav e b een n ic e-lo okin g if s h e h ad n't b een w earin g a lo ok th at s u ggeste d th ere
was a n asty s m ell u nder h er n ose .
“A h, F udge,” sa id M r. M alf o y, h old in g o ut h is h an d as h e re ach ed th e
Min is te r o f M ag ic . “ H ow a re y ou? I d on't th in k y ou'v e m et m y w if e , N arc is sa ?
Or o ur s o n, D ra co ?”
“H ow d o y ou d o, h ow d o y ou d o?” s a id F udge, s m ilin g a n d b ow in g t o M rs .
Malf o y. “ A nd a llo w m e to in tr o duce y ou to M r. O bla n sk — Obalo nsk — Mr.—
well, h e's th e B ulg aria n M in is te r o f M ag ic , a n d h e c an 't u nders ta n d a w ord I'm
sa y in g an yw ay, so nev er m in d. A nd le t's se e w ho els e — you know A rth ur
Weasle y, I d are sa y ?”
It w as a te n se m om en t. M r. W easle y a n d M r. M alf o y lo oked a t e ach o th er
an d H arry v iv id ly r e calle d th e la st tim e th ey h ad c o m e f a ce-to -fa ce: I t h ad b een
in F lo uris h a n d B lo tts ' b ooksh op, a n d th ey h ad h ad a fig ht. M r. M alf o y's c o ld
gra y e y es s w ep t o ver M r. W easle y, a n d t h en u p a n d d ow n t h e r o w .
“G ood lo rd , A rth ur,” h e s a id s o ftly . “ W hat d id y ou h av e to s e ll to g et s e ats
in t h e T op B ox? S ure ly y our h ouse w ould n't h av e f e tc h ed t h is m uch ?”
Fudge, w ho w asn 't lis te n in g, s a id , “ L uciu s h as ju st g iv en a v ery g en ero us
co ntr ib utio n to S t. M ungo's H osp ita l f o r M ag ic al M ala d ie s a n d I n ju rie s, A rth ur.
He's h ere a s m y g uest.”
“H ow — how n ic e,” s a id M r. W easle y, w ith a v ery s tr a in ed s m ile .

Mr. M alf o y's e y es h ad re tu rn ed to H erm io ne, w ho w en t s lig htly p in k, b ut
sta re d d ete rm in ed ly b ack at h im . H arry k new ex actly w hat w as m ak in g M r.
Malf o y's lip c u rl lik e th at. T he M alf o ys p rid ed th em se lv es o n b ein g p ure b lo ods;
in oth er w ord s, th ey co nsid ere d an yone of M uggle desc en t, lik e H erm io ne,
se co nd-c la ss. H ow ev er, u nder th e g aze o f th e M in is te r o f M ag ic , M r. M alf o y
did n't d are s a y a n yth in g. H e n odded s n eerin gly to M r. W easle y a n d c o ntin ued
dow n th e lin e to his se ats . D ra co sh ot H arry , R on, an d H erm io ne one
co nte m ptu ous l o ok, t h en s e ttle d h im se lf b etw een h is m oth er a n d f a th er.
“S lim y g its ,” R on m utte re d a s h e, H arry , a n d H erm io ne tu rn ed to fa ce th e
fie ld a g ain . N ex t m om en t, L udo B ag m an c h arg ed i n to t h e b ox.
“E very one re ad y?” h e sa id , h is ro und fa ce g le am in g lik e a g re at, e x cite d
Edam . “ M in is te r— re ad y t o g o?”
“R ead y w hen y ou a re , L udo,” s a id F udge c o m fo rta b ly .
Ludo w hip ped out his w an d, dir e cte d it at his ow n th ro at, an d sa id
“S onoru s!” an d th en sp oke o ver th e ro ar o f so und th at w as n ow fillin g th e
pack ed s ta d iu m ; h is v oic e e ch oed o ver th em , b oom in g in to e v ery c o rn er o f th e
sta n ds.
“L ad ie s an d gen tle m en … w elc o m e! W elc o m e to th e fin al of th e fo ur
hundre d a n d t w en ty -s e co nd Q uid ditc h W orld C up!”
The sp ecta to rs sc re am ed a n d c la p ped . T housa n ds o f fla g s w av ed , a d din g
th eir d is c o rd an t n atio nal a n th em s to th e ra ck et. T he h uge b la ck board o pposite
th em w as w ip ed c le ar o f its la st m essa g e ( B ertie B ott's E very F la v or B ean s— A
Ris k W ith E very M outh fu l! ) a n d n ow s h ow ed B U LG ARIA : 0 , I R ELA ND: 0 .
“A nd n ow , w ith out fu rth er ad o, allo w m e to in tr o duce… th e B ulg aria n
Natio nal T eam M asc o ts !”
The r ig ht- h an d s id e o f t h e s ta n ds, w hic h w as a s o lid b lo ck o f s c arle t, r o are d
its a p pro val.
“I w onder w hat th ey 'v e b ro ught,” s a id M r. W easle y, le an in g f o rw ard in h is
se at. “ A aah !” H e s u dden ly w hip ped o ff h is g la sse s a n d p olis h ed th em h urrie d ly
on h is r o bes. “ V eela !”
“W hat a re v eel – ?”
But a hundre d veela w ere now glid in g out onto th e fie ld , an d H arry 's
questio n w as a n sw ere d f o r h im . V eela w ere w om en … t h e m ost b eau tif u l w om en
Harry h ad e v er s e en … e x cep t th at th ey w ere n 't — th ey c o uld n't b e— hum an . T his
puzzle d H arry f o r a m om en t w hile h e tr ie d to g uess w hat e x actly th ey c o uld b e;
what c o uld m ak e th eir s k in s h in e m oon-b rig ht lik e th at, o r th eir w hite -g old h air
fa n o ut b eh in d th em w ith out w in d… b ut th en th e m usic sta rte d , an d H arry
sto pped w orry in g a b out th em n ot b ein g h um an — in fa ct, h e sto pped w orry in g
ab out a n yth in g a t a ll.

The v eela h ad s ta rte d to d an ce, a n d H arry 's m in d h ad g one c o m ple te ly a n d
blis sfu lly b la n k. A ll th at m atte re d in th e w orld w as th at h e k ep t w atc h in g th e
veela , b ecau se i f t h ey s to pped d an cin g, t e rrib le t h in gs w ould h ap pen .
And a s t h e v eela d an ced f a ste r a n d f a ste r, w ild , h alf -fo rm ed t h oughts s ta rte d
ch asin g th ro ugh H arry 's dazed m in d. H e w an te d to do so m eth in g very
im pre ssiv e, rig ht n ow . J u m pin g fro m th e b ox in to th e s ta d iu m s e em ed a g ood
id ea… b ut w ould i t b e g ood e n ough?
“H arry , w hat a re y ou d oin g?” s a id H erm io ne's v oic e f ro m a l o ng w ay o ff .
The m usic s to pped . H arry b lin ked . H e w as s ta n din g u p, a n d o ne o f h is le g s
was re stin g o n th e w all o f th e b ox. N ex t to h im , R on w as fro zen in a n a ttitu de
th at l o oked a s t h ough h e w ere a b out t o d iv e f ro m a s p rin gboard .
Angry y ells w ere f illin g t h e s ta d iu m . T he c ro w d d id n't w an t t h e v eela t o g o.
Harry w as w ith th em ; h e w ould , o f co urs e , b e su pportin g B ulg aria , an d h e
wondere d v ag uely w hy h e h ad a la rg e g re en s h am ro ck p in ned to h is c h est. R on,
mean w hile , w as ab se n tm in ded ly sh re d din g th e sh am ro ck s on his hat. M r.
Weasle y, sm ilin g slig htly , le an ed o ver to R on an d tu gged th e h at o ut o f h is
han ds.
“Y ou'l l b e w an tin g t h at,” h e s a id , “ o nce I re la n d h av e h ad t h eir s a y.”
“H uh?” s a id R on, s ta rin g o pen m outh ed a t th e v eela , w ho h ad n ow lin ed u p
alo ng o ne s id e o f t h e f ie ld .
Herm io ne m ad e a lo ud tu ttin g n ois e . S he r e ach ed u p a n d p ulle d H arry b ack
in to h is s e at. “ H onestly !” s h e s a id .
“A nd n ow ,” ro are d L udo B ag m an 's v oic e, “ k in dly p ut y our w an ds in th e
air … f o r t h e I ris h N atio nal T eam M asc o ts !”
Nex t m om en t, w hat se em ed to be a gre at gre en -a n d-g old co m et cam e
zo om in g in to th e s ta d iu m . It d id o ne c ir c u it o f th e s ta d iu m , th en s p lit in to tw o
sm alle r c o m ets , e ach h urtlin g to w ard th e g oal p osts . A ra in bow a rc ed s u dden ly
acro ss th e fie ld , co nnectin g th e tw o b alls o f lig ht. T he cro w d o ooohed an d
aaaaah ed , a s th ough a t a f ir e w ork s d is p la y. N ow th e r a in bow f a d ed a n d th e b alls
of lig ht re u nite d a n d m erg ed ; th ey h ad fo rm ed a g re at sh im merin g sh am ro ck ,
whic h ro se u p in to th e s k y a n d b eg an to s o ar o ver th e s ta n ds. S om eth in g lik e
gold en ra in se em ed to be fa llin g fro m it— ”E xcelle n t! ” yelle d R on as th e
sh am ro ck s o are d o ver th em , a n d h eav y g old c o in s ra in ed fro m it, b ouncin g o ff
th eir h ead s a n d s e ats . S quin tin g u p a t th e s h am ro ck , H arry re aliz ed th at it w as
actu ally c o m pris e d o f th ousa n ds o f tin y little b eard ed m en w ith re d v ests , e ach
carry in g a m in ute l a m p o f g old o r g re en .
“L ep re ch au ns!” sa id M r. W easle y over th e tu m ultu ous ap pla u se of th e
cro w d, m an y o f w hom w ere still fig htin g a n d ru m mag in g a ro und u nder th eir
ch air s t o r e tr ie v e t h e g old .

“T here y ou g o,” R on y elle d h ap pily , stu ff in g a fis tf u l o f g old c o in s in to
Harry 's h an d, “ fo r th e O m nio cu la rs ! N ow y ou'v e g ot to b uy m e a C hris tm as
pre se n t, h a!”
The g re at s h am ro ck d is so lv ed , th e le p re ch au ns d rif te d d ow n o nto th e f ie ld
on t h e o pposite s id e f ro m t h e v eela , a n d s e ttle d t h em se lv es c ro ss-le g ged t o w atc h
th e m atc h .
“A nd n ow , la d ie s a n d g en tle m en , k in dly w elc o m e— th e B ulg aria n N atio nal
Quid ditc h T eam ! I g iv e y ou— Dim itr o v!”
A s c arle t- c la d fig ure o n a b ro om stic k , m ovin g s o fa st it w as b lu rre d , s h ot
out onto th e fie ld fro m an en tr a n ce fa r belo w , to w ild ap pla u se fro m th e
Bulg aria n s u pporte rs .
“Iv an ova!”
A s e co nd s c arle t- ro bed p la y er z o om ed o ut.
“Z ogra f! L ev sk i! V ulc h an ov! V olk ov! A aaaaaan d— Kru m !”
“T hat's h im , t h at's h im !” y elle d R on, f o llo w in g K ru m w ith h is O m nio cu la rs .
Harry q uic k ly f o cu se d h is o w n.
Vik to r K ru m w as th in , d ark , a n d s a llo w -s k in ned , w ith a la rg e c u rv ed n ose
an d t h ic k b la ck e y eb ro w s. H e l o oked l ik e a n o verg ro w n b ir d o f p re y. I t w as h ard
to b elie v e h e w as o nly e ig hte en .
“A nd now , ple ase gre et— th e Iris h N atio nal Q uid ditc h Team !” yelle d
Bag m an . “P re se n tin g— Connolly ! Ryan ! Tro y! M ulle t! M ora n ! Quig le y !
Aaaaaan d— Lynch !”
Sev en g re en b lu rs s w ep t o nto th e f ie ld ; H arry s p un a s m all d ia l o n th e s id e
of his O m nio cu la rs an d slo w ed th e pla y ers dow n en ough to re ad th e w ord
“F ir e b olt” o n e ach o f th eir b ro om s a n d s e e th eir n am es, e m bro id ere d in s ilv er,
upon t h eir b ack s.
“A nd h ere , a ll th e w ay fro m E gypt, o ur re fe re e, a ccla im ed C hair w iz ard o f
th e I n te rn atio nal A sso cia tio n o f Q uid ditc h , H assa n M osta fa !”
A s m all a n d s k in ny w iz ard , c o m ple te ly b ald b ut w ith a m usta ch e to riv al
Uncle V ern on's , w earin g r o bes o f p ure g old t o m atc h t h e s ta d iu m , s tr o de o ut o nto
th e f ie ld . A s ilv er w his tle w as p ro tr u din g f ro m u nder th e m usta ch e, a n d h e w as
carry in g a la rg e w ooden c ra te u nder o ne a rm , h is b ro om stic k u nder th e o th er.
Harry s p un th e s p eed d ia l o n h is O m nio cu la rs b ack to n orm al, w atc h in g c lo se ly
as M osta fa m ounte d h is b ro om stic k a n d k ic k ed th e c ra te o pen — fo ur b alls b urs t
in to t h e a ir : t h e s c arle t Q uaff le , t h e t w o b la ck B lu dgers , a n d ( H arry s a w i t f o r t h e
brie fe st m om en t, b efo re it sp ed o ut o f sig ht) th e m in usc u le , w in ged G old en
Snitc h . W ith a s h arp b la st o n h is w his tle , M osta fa s h ot i n to t h e a ir a fte r t h e b alls .
“T heeeeeeeey 'r e O FF!” s c re am ed B ag m an . “ A nd it's M ulle t! T ro y! M ora n !
Dim itr o v! B ack t o M ulle t! T ro y! L ev sk i! M ora n !”

It w as Q uid ditc h a s H arry h ad n ev er s e en it p la y ed b efo re . H e w as p re ssin g
his O m nio cu la rs s o h ard to h is g la sse s th at th ey w ere c u ttin g in to th e b rid ge o f
his n ose . T he s p eed o f th e p la y ers w as in cre d ib le — th e C hase rs w ere th ro w in g
th e Q uaff le t o o ne a n oth er s o f a st t h at B ag m an o nly h ad t im e t o s a y t h eir n am es.
Harry s p un t h e s lo w d ia l o n t h e r ig ht o f h is O m nio cu la rs a g ain , p re sse d t h e p la y -
by-p la y b utto n o n th e to p, a n d h e w as im med ia te ly w atc h in g in slo w m otio n,
while g litte rin g p urp le le tte rin g fla sh ed a cro ss th e le n se s a n d th e n ois e o f th e
cro w d p ounded a g ain st h is e ard ru m s.
HAW KSH EA D A TTA CK IN G F O RM ATIO N, h e re ad a s h e w atc h ed th e
th re e Iris h C hase rs z o om c lo se ly to geth er, T ro y in th e c en te r, s lig htly a h ead o f
Mulle t an d M ora n , bearin g dow n upon th e B ulg aria n s. P O RSK OFF P L O Y
fla sh ed up nex t, as T ro y m ad e as th ough to dart upw ard w ith th e Q uaff le ,
dra w in g a w ay t h e B ulg aria n C hase r I v an ova a n d d ro ppin g t h e Q uaff le t o M ora n .
One o f th e B ulg aria n B eate rs , V olk ov, s w ung h ard a t a p assin g B lu dger w ith h is
sm all c lu b, k nock in g it in to M ora n 's p ath ; M ora n d uck ed to a v oid th e B lu dger
an d dro pped th e Q uaff le ; an d L ev sk i, so arin g ben eath , cau ght it— ”T R O Y
SC O RES!” ro are d B ag m an , a n d th e s ta d iu m s h uddere d w ith a ro ar o f a p pla u se
an d c h eers . “ T en z ero t o I re la n d!”
“W hat? ” H arry y elle d , lo okin g w ild ly aro und th ro ugh h is O m nio cu la rs .
“B ut L ev sk i's g ot t h e Q uaff le !”
“H arry , if y ou'r e n ot g oin g to w atc h a t n orm al s p eed , y ou'r e g oin g to m is s
th in gs!” s h oute d H erm io ne, w ho w as d an cin g u p a n d d ow n, w av in g h er a rm s in
th e a ir w hile T ro y d id a l a p o f h onor a ro und t h e f ie ld . H arry l o oked q uic k ly o ver
th e to p o f h is O m nio cu la rs an d sa w th at th e le p re ch au ns w atc h in g fro m th e
sid elin es had all ris e n in to th e air ag ain an d fo rm ed th e gre at, glitte rin g
sh am ro ck . A cro ss t h e f ie ld , t h e v eela w ere w atc h in g t h em s u lk ily .
Furio us w ith h im se lf , H arry sp un h is sp eed d ia l b ack to n orm al a s p la y
re su m ed .
Harry k new en ough ab out Q uid ditc h to se e th at th e Iris h C hase rs w ere
su perb . T hey w ork ed a s a s e am le ss te am , th eir m ovem en ts s o w ell c o ord in ate d
th at th ey ap peare d to be re ad in g one an oth er's m in ds as th ey positio ned
th em se lv es, a n d th e ro se tte o n H arry 's c h est k ep t s q ueak in g th eir n am es: “ T ro y
—Mulle t— Mo ra n !” A nd w ith in te n m in ute s, Ire la n d h ad sc o re d tw ic e m ore ,
brin gin g th eir le ad to th ir ty -z ero an d cau sin g a th undero us tid e o f ro ars an d
ap pla u se f ro m t h e g re en -c la d s u pporte rs .
The m atc h b ecam e s till f a ste r, b ut m ore b ru ta l. V olk ov a n d V ulc h an ov, th e
Bulg aria n B eate rs , w ere w hack in g th e B lu dgers a s fie rc ely a s p ossib le a t th e
Iris h C hase rs , a n d w ere s ta rtin g to p re v en t th em fro m u sin g s o m e o f th eir b est
moves; tw ic e th ey w ere f o rc ed to s c atte r, a n d th en , f in ally , I v an ova m an ag ed to

bre ak th ro ugh th eir ra n ks; d odge th e K eep er, R yan ; a n d sc o re B ulg aria 's fir s t
goal.
“F in gers in y our e ars !” b ello w ed M r. W easle y a s th e v eela s ta rte d to d an ce
in c ele b ra tio n. H arry s c re w ed u p h is e y es t o o; h e w an te d t o k eep h is m in d o n t h e
gam e. A fte r a fe w se co nds, h e c h an ced a g la n ce a t th e fie ld . T he v eela h ad
sto pped d an cin g, a n d B ulg aria w as a g ain i n p osse ssio n o f t h e Q uaff le .
“D im itr o v! L ev sk i! D im itr o v! I v an ova— oh I s a y !” r o are d B ag m an .
One hundre d th ousa n d w iz ard s gasp ed as th e tw o S eek ers , K ru m an d
Lynch , p lu m mete d th ro ugh th e c en te r o f th e C hase rs , s o fa st th at it lo oked a s
th ough th ey h ad ju st ju m ped f ro m a ir p la n es w ith out p ara ch ute s. H arry f o llo w ed
th eir d esc en t t h ro ugh h is O m nio cu la rs , s q uin tin g t o s e e w here t h e S nitc h w as—
“T hey 'r e g oin g t o c ra sh !” s c re am ed H erm io ne n ex t t o H arry .
She w as h alf r ig ht— at th e v ery la st s e co nd, V ik to r K ru m p ulle d o ut o f th e
div e a n d s p ir a le d o ff . L ynch , h ow ev er, h it th e g ro und w ith a d ull th ud th at c o uld
be h eard t h ro ughout t h e s ta d iu m . A h uge g ro an r o se f ro m t h e I ris h s e ats .
“F ool! ” m oan ed M r. W easle y. “ K ru m w as f e in tin g!”
“It's tim e-o ut! ” y elle d B ag m an 's v oic e, “ as tr a in ed m ed iw iz ard s h urry o nto
th e f ie ld t o e x am in e A id an L ynch !”
“H e'l l b e o kay, h e o nly g ot p lo ughed !” C harlie s a id r e assu rin gly to G in ny,
who w as h an gin g o ver t h e s id e o f t h e b ox, l o okin g h orro r- s tr u ck . “ W hic h i s w hat
Kru m w as a fte r, o f c o urs e … ”
Harry hastily pre sse d th e re p la y an d pla y -b y-p la y butto ns on his
Om nio cu la rs , t w id dle d t h e s p eed d ia l, a n d p ut t h em b ack u p t o h is e y es.
He w atc h ed a s K ru m a n d L ynch d iv ed a g ain in s lo w m otio n. W RO NSK I
DEFE N SIV E F E IN T— DANGER O US S E EK ER D IV ER SIO N re ad th e s h in in g
purp le le tte rin g acro ss his le n se s. He sa w Kru m 's fa ce co nto rte d with
co ncen tr a tio n as he pulle d out of th e div e ju st in tim e, w hile L ynch w as
fla tte n ed , a n d h e u nders to od— Kru m h ad n't se en th e S nitc h a t a ll, h e w as ju st
mak in g L ynch c o py h im . H arry h ad n ev er s e en a n yone f ly l ik e t h at; K ru m h ard ly
lo oked a s th ough h e w as u sin g a b ro om stic k a t a ll; h e m oved s o e asily th ro ugh
th e a ir t h at h e l o oked u nsu pporte d a n d w eig htle ss. H arry t u rn ed h is O m nio cu la rs
back to n orm al a n d fo cu se d th em o n K ru m . H e w as n ow c ir c lin g h ig h a b ove
Lynch , w ho w as b ein g re v iv ed b y m ed iw iz ard s w ith cu ps o f p otio n. H arry ,
fo cu sin g s till m ore c lo se ly u pon K ru m 's f a ce, s a w h is d ark e y es d artin g a ll o ver
th e g ro und a h undre d fe et b elo w . H e w as u sin g th e tim e w hile L ynch w as
re v iv ed t o l o ok f o r t h e S nitc h w ith out i n te rfe re n ce.
Lynch g ot to h is f e et a t la st, to lo ud c h eers f ro m th e g re en -c la d s u pporte rs ,
mounte d h is F ir e b olt, a n d k ic k ed b ack o ff i n to t h e a ir. H is r e v iv al s e em ed t o g iv e
Ire la n d n ew h eart. W hen M osta fa b le w h is w his tle a g ain , t h e C hase rs m oved i n to

actio n w ith a s k ill u nriv ale d b y a n yth in g H arry h ad s e en s o f a r.
Afte r f if te en m ore f a st a n d f u rio us m in ute s, I re la n d h ad p ulle d a h ead b y t e n
more g oals . T hey w ere n ow le ad in g b y o ne h undre d a n d th ir ty p oin ts to te n , a n d
th e g am e w as s ta rtin g t o g et d ir tie r.
As M ulle t s h ot t o w ard t h e g oal p osts y et a g ain , c lu tc h in g t h e Q uaff le t ig htly
under h er a rm , th e B ulg aria n K eep er, Z ogra f, fle w o ut to m eet h er. W hate v er
hap pen ed w as o ver s o q uic k ly H arry d id n't c atc h it, b ut a s c re am o f ra g e fro m
th e Iris h c ro w d, a n d M osta fa 's lo ng, s h rill w his tle b la st, to ld h im it h ad b een a
fo ul.
“A nd M osta fa ta k es th e B ulg aria n K eep er to ta sk fo r c o bbin g— ex cessiv e
use of elb ow s!” B ag m an in fo rm ed th e ro arin g sp ecta to rs . “A nd— yes, it's a
pen alty t o I re la n d!”
The le p re ch au ns, w ho had ris e n an grily in to th e air lik e a sw arm of
glitte rin g h orn ets w hen M ulle t h ad b een f o ule d , n ow d arte d to geth er to f o rm th e
word s “ H A, H A, H A!” T he v eela o n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e f ie ld l e ap t t o t h eir f e et,
to sse d t h eir h air a n grily , a n d s ta rte d t o d an ce a g ain .
As o ne, t h e W easle y b oys a n d H arry s tu ff e d t h eir f in gers i n to t h eir e ars , b ut
Herm io ne, w ho h ad n't b oth ere d , w as s o on tu ggin g o n H arry 's a rm . H e tu rn ed to
lo ok a t h er, a n d s h e p ulle d h is f in gers i m patie n tly o ut o f h is e ars .
“L ook a t t h e r e fe re e!” s h e s a id , g ig glin g.
Harry l o oked d ow n a t t h e f ie ld . H assa n M osta fa h ad l a n ded r ig ht i n f ro nt o f
th e d an cin g v eela , a n d w as a ctin g v ery o ddly i n deed . H e w as f le x in g h is m usc le s
an d s m ooth in g h is m usta ch e e x cite d ly .
“N ow , w e c an 't h av e th at! ” s a id L udo B ag m an , th ough h e s o unded h ig hly
am use d . “ S om eb ody s la p t h e r e fe re e!”
A m ed iw iz ard c am e t e arin g a cro ss t h e f ie ld , h is f in gers s tu ff e d i n to h is o w n
ears , a n d k ic k ed M osta fa h ard in th e s h in s. M osta fa s e em ed to c o m e to h im se lf ;
Harry , watc h in g th ro ugh th e Om nio cu la rs ag ain , sa w th at he lo oked
ex cep tio nally em barra sse d an d had sta rte d sh outin g at th e veela , w ho had
sto pped d an cin g a n d w ere l o okin g m utin ous.
“A nd u nle ss I 'm m uch m is ta k en , M osta fa is a ctu ally a tte m ptin g to s e n d o ff
th e B ulg aria n te am m asc o ts !” s a id B ag m an 's v oic e. “ N ow th ere 's s o m eth in g w e
hav en 't s e en b efo re … O h t h is c o uld t u rn n asty …
It d id : T he B ulg aria n B eate rs , V olk ov a n d V ulc h an ov, la n ded o n e ith er s id e
of M osta fa an d beg an arg uin g fu rio usly w ith him , gestic u la tin g to w ard th e
le p re ch au ns, w ho had now gle efu lly fo rm ed th e w ord s “H EE, H EE, H EE.”
Mosta fa w as n ot im pre sse d b y th e B ulg aria n s' arg um en ts , h ow ev er; h e w as
ja b bin g h is f in ger in to th e a ir , c le arly te llin g th em to g et f ly in g a g ain , a n d w hen
th ey r e fu se d , h e g av e t w o s h ort b la sts o n h is w his tle .

“T w o p en altie s fo r Ire la n d!” sh oute d B ag m an , an d th e B ulg aria n cro w d
how le d w ith a n ger. “ A nd V olk ov a n d V ulc h an ov h ad b ette r g et b ack o n th ose
bro om s… y es… t h ere t h ey g o… a n d T ro y t a k es t h e Q uaff le ..
Pla y n ow re ach ed a le v el o f fe ro city b ey ond a n yth in g th ey h ad y et se en .
The B eate rs o n b oth s id es w ere a ctin g w ith out m erc y : V olk ov a n d V ulc h an ov in
partic u la r s e em ed n ot to c are w heth er th eir c lu bs m ad e c o nta ct w ith B lu dger o r
hum an a s th ey s w ung th em v io le n tly th ro ugh th e a ir. D im itr o v s h ot s tr a ig ht a t
Mora n , w ho h ad t h e Q uaff le , n early k nock in g h er o ff h er b ro om .
“F oul! ” r o are d t h e I ris h s u pporte rs a s o ne, a ll s ta n din g u p i n a g re at w av e o f
gre en .
“F oul! ” e ch oed L udo B ag m an 's m ag ic ally m ag nif ie d v oic e. “ D im itr o v s k in s
Mora n — delib era te ly f ly in g t o c o llid e t h ere — an d i t's g ot t o b e a n oth er p en alty —
yes, t h ere 's t h e w his tle !”
The le p re ch au ns h ad ris e n in to th e a ir a g ain , a n d th is tim e, th ey fo rm ed a
gia n t h an d, w hic h w as m ak in g a v ery ru de s ig n in deed a t th e v eela a cro ss th e
fie ld . A t th is , th e veela lo st co ntr o l. In ste ad of dan cin g, th ey la u nch ed
th em se lv es a cro ss th e fie ld a n d b eg an th ro w in g w hat s e em ed to b e h an dfu ls o f
fir e a t th e le p re ch au ns. W atc h in g th ro ugh h is O m nio cu la rs , H arry s a w th at th ey
did n't lo ok r e m ote ly b eau tif u l n ow . O n th e c o ntr a ry , th eir f a ces w ere e lo ngatin g
in to s h arp , c ru el- b eak ed b ir d h ead s, a n d lo ng, s c aly w in gs w ere b urs tin g fro m
th eir s h ould ers —
“A nd th at, b oys,” y elle d M r. W easle y o ver th e tu m ult o f th e c ro w d b elo w ,
“is w hy y ou s h ould n ev er g o f o r l o oks a lo ne!”
Min is tr y w iz ard s w ere f lo odin g o nto th e f ie ld to s e p ara te th e v eela a n d th e
le p re ch au ns, b ut w ith little su ccess; m ean w hile , th e p itc h ed b attle b elo w w as
noth in g to th e o ne ta k in g p la ce a b ove. H arry tu rn ed th is w ay a n d th at, s ta rin g
th ro ugh h is O m nio cu la rs , as th e Q uaff ie ch an ged h an ds w ith th e sp eed o f a
bulle t.
“L ev sk i— Dim itr o v— Mora n — Tro y— Mulle t— Iv an ova— Mora n ag ain —
Mora n — MORA N S C O RES!”
But th e c h eers o f th e I ris h s u pporte rs w ere b are ly h eard o ver th e s h rie k s o f
th e v eela , th e b la sts n ow is su in g fro m th e M in is tr y m em bers ' w an ds, a n d th e
fu rio us ro ars of th e B ulg aria n s. T he gam e re co m men ced im med ia te ly ; now
Lev sk i h ad t h e Q uaff le , n ow D im itr o v—
The I ris h B eate r Q uig le y s w ung h eav ily a t a p assin g B lu dger, a n d h it it a s
hard a s p ossib le to w ard K ru m , w ho d id n ot d uck q uic k ly e n ough. I t h it h im f u ll
in t h e f a ce.
There w as a d eafe n in g g ro an f ro m th e c ro w d; K ru m 's n ose lo oked b ro ken ,
th ere w as b lo od e v ery w here , b ut H assa n M osta fa d id n't b lo w h is w his tle . H e h ad

beco m e d is tr a cte d , a n d H arry c o uld n't b la m e h im ; o ne o f th e v eela h ad th ro w n a
han dfu l o f f ir e a n d s e t h is b ro om t a il a lig ht.
Harry w an te d s o m eo ne to re aliz e th at K ru m w as in ju re d ; e v en th ough h e
was su pportin g Ire la n d, K ru m w as th e m ost e x citin g p la y er o n th e fie ld . R on
obvio usly f e lt t h e s a m e.
“T im e-o ut! A h, c o m e o n, h e c an 't p la y l ik e t h at, l o ok a t h im — ”
“L ook a t L ynch !” H arry y elle d .
For th e Iris h S eek er h ad s u dden ly g one in to a d iv e, a n d H arry w as q uite
su re t h at t h is w as n o W ro nsk i F ein t; t h is w as t h e r e al t h in g…
“H e's s e en t h e S nitc h !” H arry s h oute d . “ H e's s e en i t! L ook a t h im g o!”
Half th e cro w d se em ed to h av e re aliz ed w hat w as h ap pen in g; th e Iris h
su pporte rs r o se in a n oth er g re at w av e o f g re en , s c re am in g th eir S eek er o n… b ut
Kru m w as o n h is t a il. H ow h e c o uld s e e w here h e w as g oin g, H arry h ad n o i d ea;
th ere w ere f le ck s o f b lo od f ly in g t h ro ugh t h e a ir b eh in d h im , b ut h e w as d ra w in g
le v el w ith L ynch n ow a s t h e p air o f t h em h urtle d t o w ard t h e g ro und a g ain —
“T hey 'r e g oin g t o c ra sh !” s h rie k ed H erm io ne.
“T hey 'r e n ot! ” r o are d R on.
“L ynch i s !” y elle d H arry .
And he w as rig ht— fo r th e se co nd tim e, Lynch hit th e gro und w ith
tr e m en dous f o rc e a n d w as i m med ia te ly s ta m ped ed b y a h ord e o f a n gry v eela .
“T he S nitc h , w here 's t h e S nitc h ?” b ello w ed C harlie , a lo ng t h e r o w .
“H e's g ot i t— Kru m 's g ot i t— it's a ll o ver!” s h oute d H arry .
Kru m , h is re d ro bes sh in in g w ith b lo od fro m h is n ose , w as ris in g g en tly
in to t h e a ir , h is f is t h eld h ig h, a g lin t o f g old i n h is h an d.
The s c o re b oard w as f la sh in g B U LG ARIA : 1 60, I R ELA ND: 1 70 a cro ss th e
cro w d, w ho d id n't s e em to h av e re aliz ed w hat h ad h ap pen ed . T hen , s lo w ly , a s
th ough a gre at ju m bo je t w ere re v vin g up, th e ru m blin g fro m th e Ire la n d
su pporte rs g re w l o uder a n d l o uder a n d e ru pte d i n to s c re am s o f d elig ht.
“IR ELA ND W IN S!” B ag m an sh oute d , w ho lik e th e Iris h , se em ed to b e
ta k en a b ack b y t h e s u dden e n d o f t h e m atc h .
“K RU M G ETS T H E S N IT C H — BU T IR ELA ND W IN S— good lo rd , I
don't t h in k a n y o f u s w ere e x pectin g t h at! ”
“W hat d id h e c atc h th e S nitc h fo r? ” R on b ello w ed , e v en a s h e ju m ped u p
an d d ow n, a p pla u din g w ith h is h an ds o ver h is h ead . “ H e e n ded it w hen I re la n d
were a h undre d a n d s ix ty p oin ts a h ead , t h e i d io t! ”
“H e k new th ey w ere n ev er g oin g to c atc h u p!” H arry s h oute d b ack o ver a ll
th e nois e , als o ap pla u din g lo udly . “T he Iris h C hase rs w ere to o good… H e
wan te d t o e n d i t o n h is t e rm s, t h at's a ll…
“H e w as v ery b ra v e, w asn 't h e?” H erm io ne s a id , le an in g f o rw ard to w atc h

Kru m la n d as a sw arm of m ed iw iz ard s bla ste d a path th ro ugh th e battlin g
le p re ch au ns a n d v eela t o g et t o h im . “ H e l o oks a t e rrib le m ess… ”
Harry p ut h is O m nio cu la rs to h is e y es a g ain . It w as h ard to s e e w hat w as
hap pen in g b elo w , b ecau se le p re ch au ns w ere z o om in g d elig hte d ly a ll o ver th e
fie ld , b ut h e c o uld ju st m ak e o ut K ru m , s u rro unded b y m ed iw iz ard s. H e lo oked
su rlie r th an e v er a n d re fu se d to le t th em m op h im u p. H is te am m em bers w ere
aro und h im , sh ak in g th eir h ead s a n d lo okin g d eje cte d ; a sh ort w ay a w ay, th e
Iris h p la y ers w ere d an cin g g le efu lly in a s h ow er o f g old d esc en din g fro m th eir
masc o ts . F la g s w ere w av in g all o ver th e sta d iu m , th e Iris h n atio nal an th em
bla re d fro m a ll s id es; th e v eela w ere s h rin kin g b ack in to th eir u su al, b eau tif u l
se lv es n ow , t h ough l o okin g d is p ir ite d a n d f o rlo rn .
“V ell, v e fo ught b ra v ely ,” sa id a g lo om y v oic e b eh in d H arry . H e lo oked
aro und; i t w as t h e B ulg aria n M in is te r o f M ag ic .
“Y ou can sp eak E nglis h !” sa id F udge, so undin g o utr a g ed . “A nd y ou'v e
been l e ttin g m e m im e e v ery th in g a ll d ay !”
“V eil, i t v os v ery f u nny,” s a id t h e B ulg aria n m in is te r, s h ru ggin g.
“A nd a s th e Iris h te am p erfo rm s a la p o f h onor, fla n ked b y th eir m asc o ts ,
th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up i ts e lf i s b ro ught i n to t h e T op B ox!” r o are d B ag m an .
Harry 's e y es w ere s u dden ly d azzle d b y a b lin din g w hite lig ht, a s th e T op
Box w as m ag ic ally illu m in ate d so th at ev ery one in th e sta n ds co uld se e th e
in sid e. S quin tin g to w ard th e e n tr a n ce, h e sa w tw o p an tin g w iz ard s c arry in g a
vast g old en c u p in to th e b ox, w hic h th ey h an ded to C orn eliu s F udge, w ho w as
still lo okin g v ery d is g ru ntle d th at h e'd b een u sin g sig n la n guag e all d ay fo r
noth in g.
“L et's h av e a re ally lo ud h an d fo r th e g alla n t lo se rs — Bulg aria !” B ag m an
sh oute d .
And u p th e s ta ir s in to th e b ox c am e th e s e v en d efe ate d B ulg aria n p la y ers .
The c ro w d b elo w w as a p pla u din g a p pre cia tiv ely ; H arry c o uld s e e t h ousa n ds a n d
th ousa n ds o f O m nio cu la r l e n se s f la sh in g a n d w in kin g i n t h eir d ir e ctio n.
One b y o ne, th e B ulg aria n s f ile d b etw een th e r o w s o f s e ats in th e b ox, a n d
Bag m an c alle d o ut t h e n am e o f e ach a s t h ey s h ook h an ds w ith t h eir o w n m in is te r
an d t h en w ith F udge. K ru m , w ho w as l a st in l in e, l o oked a r e al m ess. T w o b la ck
ey es w ere b lo om in g s p ecta cu la rly o n h is b lo ody fa ce. H e w as s till h old in g th e
Snitc h . H arry n otic ed th at h e s e em ed m uch le ss c o ord in ate d o n th e g ro und. H e
was slig htly duck -fo ote d an d dis tin ctly ro und-s h ould ere d . B ut w hen K ru m 's
nam e w as a n nounced , th e w hole sta d iu m g av e h im a re so undin g, e ars p littin g
ro ar.
And th en c am e th e I ris h te am . A id an L ynch w as b ein g s u pporte d b y M ora n
an d C onnolly ; th e s e co nd c ra sh s e em ed to h av e d azed h im a n d h is e y es lo oked

str a n gely u nfo cu se d . B ut h e g rin ned h ap pily a s T ro y a n d Q uig le y lif te d th e C up
in to th e a ir a n d th e c ro w d b elo w th undere d its a p pro val. H arry 's h an ds w ere
num b w ith c la p pin g.
At l a st, w hen t h e I ris h t e am h ad l e ft t h e b ox t o p erfo rm a n oth er l a p o f h onor
on th eir b ro om s ( A id an L ynch o n th e b ack o f C onfo lly 's , c lu tc h in g h ard a ro und
his w ais t a n d s till g rin nin g i n a b em use d s o rt o f w ay ), B ag m an p oin te d h is w an d
at h is t h ro at a n d m utte re d , “ Q uie tu s.”
“T hey 'l l b e ta lk in g a b out th is o ne fo r y ears ,” h e sa id h oars e ly , “ a re ally
unex pecte d tw is t, th at… s h am e it c o uld n't h av e la ste d lo nger… A h y es… y es, I
ow e y ou… h ow m uch ?”
For F re d a n d G eo rg e h ad ju st s c ra m ble d o ver th e b ack s o f th eir s e ats a n d
were sta n din g in fro nt o f L udo B ag m an w ith b ro ad g rin s o n th eir fa ces, th eir
han ds o uts tr e tc h ed .

C H APT ER N IN E
T H E D ARK M ARK
Don't te ll y our m oth er y ou'v e b een g am blin g,” M r. W easle y im plo re d F re d
a n d G eo rg e a s t h ey a ll m ad e t h eir w ay s lo w ly d ow n t h e p urp le -c arp ete d s ta ir s .
“D on't w orry , D ad ,” sa id F re d gle efu lly , “w e'v e got big pla n s fo r th is
m oney. W e d on't w an t i t c o nfis c ate d .”
Mr. W easle y l o oked f o r a m om en t a s t h ough h e w as g oin g t o a sk w hat t h ese
b ig p la n s w ere , b ut se em ed to d ecid e, u pon re fle ctio n, th at h e d id n't w an t to
k now .
They w ere s o on c au ght u p in th e c ro w ds n ow flo odin g o ut o f th e s ta d iu m
a n d b ack to th eir c am psite s. R au co us sin gin g w as b orn e to w ard th em o n th e
n ig ht a ir a s th ey re tr a ced th eir s te p s a lo ng th e la n te rn -lit p ath , a n d le p re ch au ns
k ep t s h ootin g o ver th eir h ead s, c ack lin g a n d w av in g th eir la n te rn s. W hen th ey
f in ally r e ach ed th e te n ts , n obody f e lt lik e s le ep in g a t a ll, a n d g iv en th e le v el o f
n ois e a ro und th em , M r. W easle y a g re ed th at th ey c o uld a ll h av e o ne la st c u p o f
c o co a to geth er b efo re tu rn in g in . T hey w ere s o on a rg uin g e n jo yab ly a b out th e
m atc h ; M r. W easle y g ot d ra w n in to a d is a g re em en t a b out c o bbin g w ith C harlie ,
a n d it w as o nly w hen G in ny fe ll a sle ep rig ht a t th e tin y ta b le a n d sp ille d h ot
c h oco la te a ll o ver th e flo or th at M r. W easle y c alle d a h alt to th e v erb al re p la y s
a n d in sis te d th at e v ery one g o to b ed . H erm io ne a n d G in ny w en t in to th e n ex t
t e n t, a n d H arry a n d t h e r e st o f t h e W easle y s c h an ged i n to p aja m as a n d c la m bere d
i n to th eir b unks. F ro m th e o th er s id e o f th e c am psite th ey c o uld s till h ear m uch
s in gin g a n d t h e o dd e ch oin g b an g.
“O h I a m g la d I 'm n ot o n d uty ,” m utte re d M r. W easle y s le ep ily . “ I w ould n't
f a n cy h av in g t o g o a n d t e ll t h e I ris h t h ey 'v e g ot t o s to p c ele b ra tin g.”
Harry , w ho w as o n a to p b unk a b ove R on, la y sta rin g u p a t th e c an vas
c eilin g o f th e te n t, w atc h in g th e g lo w o f a n o ccasio nal le p re ch au n la n te rn f ly in g
o verh ead , a n d p ic tu rin g a g ain s o m e o f K ru m 's m ore s p ecta cu la r m oves. H e w as
i tc h in g to get back on his ow n Fir e b olt an d tr y out th e W ro nsk i Fein t…
S om eh ow O liv er W ood h ad n ev er m an ag ed to c o nvey w ith a ll h is w rig glin g
d ia g ra m s w hat th at m ove w as su ppose d to lo ok lik e… H arry sa w h im se lf in
r o bes th at h ad h is n am e o n th e b ack , a n d im ag in ed th e s e n sa tio n o f h earin g a
h undre d -th ousa n d-s tr o ng cro w d ro ar, as Ludo Bag m an 's voic e ech oed
t h ro ughout t h e s ta d iu m , “ I g iv e y ou… P otte r!”
Harry n ev er k new w heth er o r n ot h e h ad a ctu ally d ro pped o ff to s le ep — his
f a n ta sie s o f f ly in g lik e K ru m m ig ht w ell h av e s lip ped in to a ctu al d re am s— all h e

knew w as t h at, q uite s u dden ly , M r. W easle y w as s h outin g.
“G et u p! R on— Harry — co m e o n n ow , g et u p, t h is i s u rg en t! ”
Harry s a t u p q uic k ly a n d t h e t o p o f h is h ead h it c an vas.
“S ' m atte r? ” h e s a id .
Dim ly , h e c o uld te ll th at s o m eth in g w as w ro ng. T he n ois e s in th e c am psite
had c h an ged . T he s in gin g h ad s to pped . H e c o uld h ear s c re am s, a n d th e s o und o f
peo ple r u nnin g. H e s lip ped d ow n f ro m th e b unk a n d r e ach ed f o r h is c lo th es, b ut
Mr. W easle y, w ho h ad p ulle d o n h is je an s o ver h is o w n p aja m as, s a id , “ N o tim e,
Harry — ju st g ra b a j a ck et a n d g et o uts id e— quic k ly !”
Harry d id a s h e w as t o ld a n d h urrie d o ut o f t h e t e n t, R on a t h is h eels .
By th e lig ht o f th e fe w fir e s th at w ere still b urn in g, h e c o uld se e p eo ple
ru nnin g a w ay i n to t h e w oods, f le ein g s o m eth in g t h at w as m ovin g a cro ss t h e f ie ld
to w ard th em , s o m eth in g th at w as e m ittin g o dd fla sh es o f lig ht a n d n ois e s lik e
gunfir e . L oud je erin g, r o ars o f la u ghte r, a n d d ru nken y ells w ere d rif tin g to w ard
th em ; t h en c am e a b urs t o f s tr o ng g re en l ig ht, w hic h i llu m in ate d t h e s c en e.
A cro w d of w iz ard s, tig htly pack ed an d m ovin g to geth er w ith w an ds
poin tin g s tr a ig ht u pw ard , w as m arc h in g s lo w ly a cro ss th e fie ld . H arry s q uin te d
at th em … T hey d id n't s e em to h av e fa ces… T hen h e re aliz ed th at th eir h ead s
were h ooded a n d th eir f a ces m ask ed . H ig h a b ove th em , f lo atin g a lo ng in m id air ,
fo ur str u gglin g fig ure s w ere b ein g c o nto rte d in to g ro te sq ue sh ap es. It w as a s
th ough t h e m ask ed w iz ard s o n t h e g ro und w ere p uppete ers , a n d t h e p eo ple a b ove
th em w ere m ario nette s o pera te d b y in vis ib le str in gs th at ro se fro m th e w an ds
in to t h e a ir. T w o o f t h e f ig ure s w ere v ery s m all.
More w iz ard s w ere j o in in g t h e m arc h in g g ro up, l a u ghin g a n d p oin tin g u p a t
th e flo atin g b odie s. T en ts cru m ple d an d fe ll as th e m arc h in g cro w d sw elle d .
Once o r t w ic e H arry s a w o ne o f t h e m arc h ers b la st a t e n t o ut o f h is w ay w ith h is
wan d. S ev era l c au ght f ir e . T he s c re am in g g re w l o uder.
The flo atin g peo ple w ere su dden ly illu m in ate d as th ey passe d over a
burn in g te n t an d H arry re co gniz ed one of th em : M r. R oberts , th e cam psite
man ag er. T he o th er th re e lo oked a s th ough th ey m ig ht b e h is w if e a n d c h ild re n .
One o f t h e m arc h ers b elo w f lip ped M rs . R oberts u psid e d ow n w ith h is w an d; h er
nig htd re ss fe ll d ow n to re v eal v olu m in ous d ra w ers a n d s h e s tr u ggle d to c o ver
hers e lf u p a s t h e c ro w d b elo w h er s c re ech ed a n d h oote d w ith g le e.
“T hat's s ic k ,” R on m utte re d , w atc h in g th e s m alle st M uggle c h ild , w ho h ad
beg un to s p in lik e a to p, s ix ty fe et a b ove th e g ro und, h is h ead flo ppin g lim ply
fro m s id e t o s id e. “ T hat i s r e ally s ic k … ”
Herm io ne a n d G in ny c am e h urry in g to w ard th em , p ullin g c o ats o ver th eir
nig htd re sse s, w ith M r. W easle y rig ht b eh in d th em . A t th e sa m e m om en t, B ill,
Charlie , a n d P erc y e m erg ed f ro m th e b oys' te n t, f u lly d re sse d , w ith th eir s le ev es

ro lle d u p a n d t h eir w an ds o ut.
“W e'r e g oin g t o h elp t h e M in is tr y !” M r. W easle y s h oute d o ver a ll t h e n ois e ,
ro llin g u p h is o w n s le ev es. “ Y ou lo t— get in to th e w oods, a n d s tic k to geth er. I 'l l
co m e a n d f e tc h y ou w hen w e'v e s o rte d t h is o ut! ”
Bill, C harlie , a n d P erc y w ere a lr e ad y s p rin tin g a w ay to w ard th e o nco m in g
marc h ers ; M r. W easle y to re afte r th em . M in is tr y w iz ard s w ere d ash in g fro m
ev ery d ir e ctio n to w ard th e s o urc e o f th e tr o uble . T he c ro w d b en eath th e R oberts
fa m ily w as c o m in g e v er c lo se r.
“C 'm on,” s a id F re d , g ra b bin g G in ny's h an d a n d s ta rtin g to p ull h er to w ard
th e w ood. H arry , R on, H erm io ne, a n d G eo rg e f o llo w ed . T hey a ll lo oked b ack a s
th ey re ach ed th e tr e es. T he c ro w d b en eath th e R oberts fa m ily w as la rg er th an
ev er; th ey c o uld s e e th e M in is tr y w iz ard s tr y in g to g et th ro ugh it to th e h ooded
wiz ard s in th e c en te r, b ut th ey w ere h av in g g re at d if f ic u lty . I t lo oked a s th ough
th ey w ere s c are d t o p erfo rm a n y s p ell t h at m ig ht m ak e t h e R oberts f a m ily f a ll.
The co lo re d la n te rn s th at had lit th e path to th e sta d iu m had been
ex tin guis h ed . D ark fig ure s w ere b lu nderin g th ro ugh th e tr e es; ch ild re n w ere
cry in g; a n xio us s h outs a n d p an ic k ed v oic es w ere re v erb era tin g a ro und th em in
th e c o ld n ig ht a ir. H arry fe lt h im se lf b ein g p ush ed h ith er a n d th ith er b y p eo ple
whose f a ces h e c o uld n ot s e e. T hen h e h eard R on y ell w ith p ain .
“W hat hap pen ed ?” sa id H erm io ne an xio usly , sto ppin g so ab ru ptly th at
Harry w alk ed i n to h er. “ R on, w here a re y ou? O h t h is i s s tu pid — lu m os!”
She i llu m in ate d h er w an d a n d d ir e cte d i ts n arro w b eam a cro ss t h e p ath . R on
was l y in g s p ra w le d o n t h e g ro und.
“T rip ped o ver a t r e e r o ot,” h e s a id a n grily , g ettin g t o h is f e et a g ain .
“W ell, w ith fe et th at s iz e, h ard n ot to ,” s a id a d ra w lin g v oic e fro m b eh in d
th em .
Harry , R on, an d H erm io ne tu rn ed sh arp ly . D ra co M alf o y w as sta n din g
alo ne n earb y, le an in g a g ain st a tr e e, lo okin g u tte rly r e la x ed . H is a rm s f o ld ed , h e
se em ed to h av e b een w atc h in g th e s c en e a t th e c am psite th ro ugh a g ap in th e
tr e es.
Ron to ld M alf o y to d o so m eth in g th at H arry k new h e w ould n ev er h av e
dare d s a y i n f ro nt o f M rs . W easle y.
“L an guag e, W easle y,” sa id M alf o y, h is p ale ey es g litte rin g. “H ad n't y ou
bette r b e h urry in g a lo ng, n ow ? Y ou w ould n't l ik e h er s p otte d , w ould y ou?”
He n odded at H erm io ne, an d at th e sa m e m om en t, a b la st lik e a b om b
so unded fro m th e c am psite , a n d a fla sh o f g re en lig ht m om en ta rily lit th e tr e es
aro und t h em .
“W hat's t h at s u ppose d t o m ean ?” s a id H erm io ne d efia n tly . “ G ra n ger, t h ey 'r e
afte r M uggle s, “ sa id M alf o y. “ D 'y ou w an t to b e s h ow in g o ff y our k nic k ers in

mid air ? B ecau se i f y ou d o, h an g a ro und… t h ey 'r e m ovin g t h is w ay, a n d i t w ould
giv e u s a ll a l a u gh.”
“H erm io ne's a w itc h ,” H arry s n arle d .
“H av e it y our o w n w ay, P otte r,” s a id M alf o y, g rin nin g m alic io usly . “ If y ou
th in k t h ey c an 't s p ot a M udblo od, s ta y w here y ou a re .”
“Y ou w atc h your m outh !” sh oute d R on. E very body pre se n t knew th at
“M udblo od” w as a very off e n siv e te rm fo r a w itc h or w iz ard of M uggle
pare n ta g e.
“N ev er m in d, R on,” s a id H erm io ne q uic k ly , s e iz in g R on's a rm to re str a in
him a s h e t o ok a s te p t o w ard M alf o y.
There c am e a b an g fro m th e o th er sid e o f th e tr e es th at w as lo uder th an
an yth in g th ey h ad h eard . S ev era l p eo ple n earb y sc re am ed . M alf o y ch uck le d
so ftly .
“S care e asily , d on't t h ey ?” h e s a id l a zily . “ I s u ppose y our d ad dy t o ld y ou a ll
to h id e? W hat's h e u p t o — tr y in g t o r e sc u e t h e M uggle s? ”
“W here 'r e y our p are n ts ? ” s a id H arry , h is te m per r is in g. “ O ut th ere w earin g
mask s, a re t h ey ?”
Malf o y t u rn ed h is f a ce t o H arry , s till s m ilin g.
“W ell… i f t h ey w ere , I w ould n't b e l ik ely t o t e ll y ou, w ould I , P otte r? ”
“O h c o m e o n,” s a id H erm io ne, w ith a d is g uste d lo ok a t M alf o y, “ le t's g o
an d f in d t h e o th ers .”
“K eep t h at b ig b ush y h ead d ow n, G ra n ger,” s n eere d M alf o y.
“C om e o n,” H erm io ne r e p eate d , a n d s h e p ulle d H arry a n d R on u p th e p ath
ag ain .
“I'l l b et y ou a n yth in g h is d ad i s o ne o f t h at m ask ed l o t! ” s a id R on h otly .
“W ell, w ith an y lu ck , th e M in is tr y w ill catc h him !” sa id H erm io ne
fe rv en tly . “ O h I c an 't b elie v e t h is . W here h av e t h e o th ers g ot t o ?”
Fre d , G eo rg e, a n d G in ny w ere n ow here to b e se en , th ough th e p ath w as
pack ed w ith p le n ty o f o th er p eo ple , a ll lo okin g n erv ously o ver th eir s h ould ers
to w ard th e c o m motio n b ack a t th e c am psite . A h uddle o f te en ag ers in p aja m as
was a rg uin g v ocif e ro usly a l ittle w ay a lo ng t h e p ath . W hen t h ey s a w H arry , R on,
an d H erm io ne, a g ir l w ith th ic k cu rly h air tu rn ed an d sa id q uic k ly , “O u est
Mad am e M ax im e? N ous l 'a v ons p erd ue— ”
“E r— what? ” s a id R on.
“O h… ” T he g ir l w ho h ad sp oken tu rn ed h er b ack o n h im , an d as th ey
walk ed o n t h ey d is tin ctly h eard h er s a y, “ O gw arts .”
“B eau xbato ns,” m utte re d H erm io ne.
“S orry ?” s a id H arry .
“T hey must go to Beau xbato ns,” sa id Herm io ne. “Y ou know …

Beau xbato ns A cad em y o f M ag ic … I re ad a b out it in A n A ppra is a l o fM ag ic al
Educatio n i n E uro pe.”
“O h… y eah … r ig ht,” s a id H arry .
“F re d a n d G eo rg e c an 't h av e g one th at f a r,” s a id R on, p ullin g o ut h is w an d,
lig htin g it lik e H erm io ne's , a n d s q uin tin g u p th e p ath . H arry d ug in th e p ock ets
of h is j a ck et f o r h is o w n w an d— but i t w asn 't t h ere . T he o nly t h in g h e c o uld f in d
was h is O m nio cu la rs .
“A h, n o, I d on't b elie v e i t… I 'v e l o st m y w an d!”
“Y ou'r e k id din g!”
Ron a n d H erm io ne ra is e d th eir w an ds h ig h e n ough to sp re ad th e n arro w
beam s o f lig ht f a rth er o n th e g ro und; H arry lo oked a ll a ro und h im , b ut h is w an d
was n ow here t o b e s e en .
“M ay be i t's b ack i n t h e t e n t,” s a id R on.
“M ay be it fe ll out of your pock et w hen w e w ere ru nnin g?” H erm io ne
su ggeste d a n xio usly .
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry , “ m ay be..
He u su ally k ep t h is w an d w ith h im a t a ll tim es in th e w iz ard in g w orld , a n d
fin din g h im se lf w ith out it in th e m id st o f a s c en e lik e th is m ad e h im fe el v ery
vuln era b le .
A ru stlin g n ois e n earb y m ad e a ll th re e o f th em ju m p. W in ky th e h ouse -e lf
was f ig htin g h er w ay o ut o f a c lu m p o f b ush es n earb y. S he w as m ovin g i n a m ost
pecu lia r fa sh io n, ap pare n tly w ith g re at d if f ic u lty ; it w as as th ough so m eo ne
in vis ib le w ere t r y in g t o h old h er b ack .
“T here is bad w iz ard s ab out! ” sh e sq ueak ed dis tr a cte d ly as sh e le an ed
fo rw ard a n d la b ore d to k eep ru nnin g. “ P eo ple h ig h— hig h in th e a ir ! W in ky is
gettin g o ut o f t h e w ay !”
And s h e d is a p peare d i n to t h e t r e es o n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e p ath , p an tin g a n d
sq ueak in g a s s h e f o ught t h e f o rc e t h at w as r e str a in in g h er.
“W hat's u p w ith h er? ” s a id R on, lo okin g c u rio usly a fte r W in ky. “ W hy c an 't
sh e r u n p ro perly ?”
“B et sh e d id n't a sk p erm is sio n to h id e,” sa id H arry . H e w as th in kin g o f
Dobby: E very tim e h e h ad tr ie d to d o s o m eth in g th e M alf o ys w ould n't lik e, th e
house -e lf h ad b een f o rc ed t o s ta rt b eatin g h im se lf u p.
“Y ou k now , h ouse -e lv es g et a v ery ra w d eal! ” s a id H erm io ne in dig nan tly .
“It's s la v ery , th at's w hat it is ! T hat M r. C ro uch m ad e h er g o u p to th e to p o f th e
sta d iu m , a n d s h e w as te rrif ie d , a n d h e's g ot h er b ew itc h ed s o s h e c an 't e v en r u n
when t h ey s ta rt t r a m plin g t e n ts ! W hy d oesn 't a n yone d o s o m eth in g a b out i t? ”
“W ell, th e e lv es a re h ap py, a re n 't th ey ?” R on s a id . “ Y ou h eard o ld W in ky
back a t th e m atc h … 'H ouse -e lv es is n ot s u ppose d to h av e f u n'… th at's w hat s h e

lik es, b ein g b osse d a ro und… ”
“It's p eo ple l ik e y ou, R on,” H erm io ne b eg an h otly , “ w ho p ro p u p r o tte n a n d
unju st s y ste m s, j u st b ecau se t h ey 'r e t o o l a zy t o — ”
Anoth er l o ud b an g e ch oed f ro m t h e e d ge o f t h e w ood.
“L et's ju st k eep m ovin g, s h all w e?” s a id R on, a n d H arry s a w h im g la n ce
ed gily a t H erm io ne. P erh ap s th ere w as tr u th in w hat M alf o y h ad s a id ; p erh ap s
Herm io ne w as in m ore d an ger th an th ey w ere . T hey se t o ff a g ain , H arry still
se arc h in g h is p ock ets , e v en t h ough h e k new h is w an d w asn 't t h ere .
They f o llo w ed th e d ark p ath d eep er in to th e w ood, s till k eep in g a n e y e o ut
fo r F re d , G eo rg e, a n d G in ny. T hey p asse d a g ro up o f g oblin s w ho w ere c ack lin g
over a s a ck o f g old th at th ey h ad u ndoubte d ly w on b ettin g o n th e m atc h , a n d
who s e em ed q uite u npertu rb ed b y th e tr o uble a t th e c am psite . F arth er s till a lo ng
th e p ath , t h ey w alk ed i n to a p atc h o f s ilv ery l ig ht, a n d w hen t h ey l o oked t h ro ugh
th e tr e es, th ey sa w th re e ta ll an d beau tif u l veela sta n din g in a cle arin g,
su rro unded b y a g ag gle o f y oung w iz ard s, a ll o f w hom w ere t a lk in g v ery l o udly .
“I p ull d ow n ab out a h undre d sa ck s o f G alle o ns a y ear!” o ne o f th em
sh oute d . “ I'm a d ra g on k ille r fo r th e C om mitte e fo r th e D is p osa l o f D an gero us
Cre atu re s.”
“N o, y ou'r e n ot! ” y elle d h is frie n d. “Y ou'r e a d is h w ash er at th e L eak y
Cau ld ro n… b ut I 'm a v am pir e h unte r, I 'v e k ille d a b out n in ety s o f a r— ”
A th ir d y oung w iz ard , w hose p im ple s w ere v is ib le e v en b y th e d im , s ilv ery
lig ht o f th e v eela , n ow c u t in , “ I'm a b out to b eco m e th e y oungest e v er M in is te r
of M ag ic , I a m .”
Harry s n orte d w ith la u ghte r. H e re co gniz ed th e p im ply w iz ard : H is n am e
was S ta n S hunpik e, a n d h e w as in fa ct a c o nducto r o n th e tr ip le -d eck er K nig ht
Bus. H e tu rn ed to te ll R on th is , b ut R on's fa ce h ad g one o ddly s la ck , a n d n ex t
se co nd R on w as y ellin g, “ D id I te ll y ou I 'v e in ven te d a b ro om stic k th at'l l r e ach
Ju pite r? ”
“H onestly !” s a id H erm io ne, a n d s h e a n d H arry g ra b bed R on f ir m ly b y th e
arm s, w heele d h im a ro und, a n d m arc h ed h im a w ay. B y th e tim e th e s o unds o f
th e v eela a n d t h eir a d m ir e rs h ad f a d ed c o m ple te ly , t h ey w ere i n t h e v ery h eart o f
th e w ood. T hey s e em ed t o b e a lo ne n ow ; e v ery th in g w as m uch q uie te r.
Harry l o oked a ro und. “ I r e ck on w e c an j u st w ait h ere , y ou k now . W e'l l h ear
an yone c o m in g a m ile o ff .”
The w ord s w ere h ard ly o ut o f h is m outh , w hen L udo B ag m an e m erg ed
fro m b eh in d a t r e e r ig ht a h ead o f t h em .
Even b y th e fe eb le lig ht o f th e tw o w an ds, H arry c o uld se e th at a g re at
ch an ge h ad c o m e o ver B ag m an . H e n o lo nger lo oked b uoyan t a n d ro sy -fa ced ;
th ere w as n o m ore s p rin g i n h is s te p . H e l o oked v ery w hite a n d s tr a in ed .

“W ho's th at? ” h e sa id , b lin kin g d ow n at th em , tr y in g to m ak e o ut th eir
fa ces. “ W hat a re y ou d oin g i n h ere , a ll a lo ne?”
They l o oked a t o ne a n oth er, s u rp ris e d .
“W ell— th ere 's a s o rt o f r io t g oin g o n,” s a id R on.
Bag m an s ta re d a t h im .
“W hat? ”
“A t t h e c am psite … s o m e p eo ple h av e g ot h old o f a f a m ily o f M uggle s…
Bag m an s w ore l o udly .
“D am n th em !” h e s a id , lo okin g q uite d is tr a cte d , a n d w ith out a n oth er w ord ,
he D is a p para te d w ith a s m all p op!
“N ot ex actly on to p of th in gs, M r. B ag m an , is he?” sa id H erm io ne,
fro w nin g.
“H e w as a g re at B eate r, t h ough,” s a id R on, l e ad in g t h e w ay o ff t h e p ath i n to
a s m all c le arin g, a n d s ittin g d ow n o n a p atc h o f d ry g ra ss a t th e fo ot o f a tr e e.
“T he W im bourn e W asp s w on th e le ag ue th re e tim es in a r o w w hile h e w as w ith
th em .”
He to ok h is sm all fig ure o f K ru m o ut o f h is p ock et, se t it d ow n o n th e
gro und, a n d w atc h ed it w alk a ro und. L ik e th e r e al K ru m , th e m odel w as s lig htly
duck -fo ote d an d ro und-s h ould ere d , m uch le ss im pre ssiv e o n h is sp la y ed fe et
th an on his bro om stic k . H arry w as lis te n in g fo r nois e fro m th e cam psite .
Every th in g s e em ed m uch q uie te r; p erh ap s t h e r io t w as o ver.
“I h ope t h e o th ers a re o kay,” s a id H erm io ne a fte r a w hile .
“T hey 'l l b e f in e,” s a id R on.
“Im ag in e i f y our d ad c atc h es L uciu s M alf o y,” s a id H arry , s ittin g d ow n n ex t
to R on a n d w atc h in g th e s m all f ig ure o f K ru m s lo uch in g o ver th e f a lle n le av es.
“H e's a lw ay s s a id h e'd l ik e t o g et s o m eth in g o n h im .”
“T hat'd w ip e t h e s m ir k o ff o ld D ra co 's f a ce, a ll r ig ht,” s a id R on.
“T hose p oor M uggle s, th ough,” sa id H erm io ne n erv ously . “ W hat if th ey
can 't g et t h em d ow n?”
“T hey w ill,” s a id R on r e assu rin gly . “ T hey 'l l f in d a w ay.”
“M ad , th ough, to do so m eth in g lik e th at w hen th e w hole M in is tr y of
Mag ic 's o ut h ere to nig ht! ” s a id H erm io ne. “ I m ean , h ow d o th ey e x pect to g et
aw ay w ith i t? D o y ou t h in k t h ey 'v e b een d rin kin g, o r a re t h ey j u st— ”
But s h e b ro ke o ff a b ru ptly a n d lo oked o ver h er s h ould er. H arry a n d R on
lo oked q uic k ly a ro und t o o. I t s o unded a s t h ough s o m eo ne w as s ta g gerin g t o w ard
th eir c le arin g. T hey w aite d , lis te n in g to th e s o unds o f th e u nev en s te p s b eh in d
th e d ark t r e es. B ut t h e f o ots te p s c am e t o a s u dden h alt.
“H ello ?” c alle d H arry .
There w as s ile n ce. H arry g ot to h is f e et a n d p eere d a ro und th e tr e e. I t w as

to o d ark to s e e v ery f a r, b ut h e c o uld s e n se s o m eb ody s ta n din g ju st b ey ond th e
ra n ge o f h is v is io n.
“W ho's t h ere ?” h e s a id .
And th en , w ith out w arn in g, th e s ile n ce w as r e n t b y a v oic e u nlik e a n y th ey
had h eard in th e w ood; a n d it u tte re d , n ot a p an ic k ed s h out, b ut w hat s o unded
lik e a s p ell.
“M ORSM ORD RE!”
And so m eth in g vast, gre en , an d glitte rin g eru pte d fro m th e patc h of
dark ness H arry 's ey es h ad b een str u gglin g to p en etr a te ; it fle w u p o ver th e
tr e eto ps a n d i n to t h e s k y.
“W hat th e— ?” g asp ed R on a s h e s p ra n g to h is f e et a g ain , s ta rin g u p a t th e
th in g t h at h ad a p peare d .
For a s p lit s e co nd, H arry t h ought i t w as a n oth er l e p re ch au n f o rm atio n. T hen
he re aliz ed th at it w as a c o lo ssa l s k ull, c o m pris e d o f w hat lo oked lik e e m era ld
sta rs , w ith a s e rp en t p ro tr u din g f ro m i ts m outh l ik e a t o ngue. A s t h ey w atc h ed , i t
ro se h ig her a n d h ig her, b la zin g in a h aze o f g re en is h s m oke, e tc h ed a g ain st th e
bla ck s k y l ik e a n ew c o nste lla tio n.
Sudden ly , th e w ood all aro und th em eru pte d w ith sc re am s. H arry d id n't
unders ta n d w hy, b ut th e o nly p ossib le c au se w as th e s u dden a p peara n ce o f th e
sk ull, w hic h h ad n ow r is e n h ig h e n ough to illu m in ate th e e n tir e w ood lik e s o m e
gris ly n eo n s ig n. H e s c an ned th e d ark ness f o r th e p ers o n w ho h ad c o nju re d th e
sk ull, b ut h e c o uld n't s e e a n yone.
“W ho's t h ere ?” h e c alle d a g ain .
“H arry , c o m e o n, m ove!” H erm io ne h ad s e iz ed th e c o lla r o f h is ja ck et a n d
was t u ggin g h im b ack w ard .
“W hat's th e m atte r? ” H arry sa id , sta rtle d to se e h er fa ce so w hite an d
te rrif ie d .
“It's th e D ark M ark , H arry !” H erm io ne m oan ed , p ullin g h im a s h ard a s s h e
co uld . “ Y ou-K now -W ho's s ig n!”
“V old em ort's — ”H arry , c o m e o n!”
Harry tu rn ed — Ron w as h urrie d ly sc o opin g u p h is m in ia tu re K ru m — th e
th re e o f th em sta rte d acro ss th e cle arin g— but b efo re th ey h ad ta k en a fe w
hurrie d ste p s, a se rie s of poppin g nois e s an nounced th e arriv al of tw en ty
wiz ard s, a p pearin g f ro m t h in a ir , s u rro undin g t h em .
Harry w hir le d a ro und, a n d in a n in sta n t, h e re g is te re d o ne fa ct: E ach o f
th ese w iz ard s h ad h is w an d o ut, a n d e v ery w an d w as p oin tin g rig ht a t h im se lf ,
Ron, a n d H erm io ne.
With out p au sin g t o t h in k, h e y elle d , “ D UCK !”
He s e iz ed t h e o th er t w o a n d p ulle d t h em d ow n o nto t h e g ro und.

“S T U PE FY !” r o are d tw en ty v oic es— th ere w as a b lin din g s e rie s o f f la sh es
an d H arry f e lt th e h air o n h is h ead r ip ple a s th ough a p ow erfu l w in d h ad s w ep t
th e c le arin g. R ais in g h is h ead a f ra ctio n o f a n in ch h e s a w je ts o f f ie ry r e d lig ht
fly in g o ver th em fro m th e w iz ard s' w an ds, c ro ssin g o ne a n oth er, b ouncin g o ff
tr e e t r u nks, r e b oundin g i n to t h e d ark ness—
“S to p!” y elle d a v oic e h e r e co gniz ed . “ S T O P! T hat's m y s o n!”
Harry 's h air s to pped b lo w in g a b out. H e ra is e d h is h ead a little h ig her. T he
wiz ard in fro nt o f h im h ad lo w ere d h is w an d. H e ro lle d o ver an d sa w M r.
Weasle y s tr id in g t o w ard t h em , l o okin g t e rrif ie d .
“R on— Harry ”— his v oic e s o unded s h ak y— ”H erm io ne— are y ou a ll r ig ht? ”
“O ut o f t h e w ay, A rth ur,” s a id a c o ld , c u rt v oic e.
It w as M r. C ro uch . H e a n d th e o th er M in is tr y w iz ard s w ere c lo sin g in o n
th em . H arry g ot t o h is f e et t o f a ce t h em . M r. C ro uch 's f a ce w as t a u t w ith r a g e.
“W hic h o f y ou d id it? ” h e s n ap ped , h is s h arp e y es d artin g b etw een th em .
“W hic h o f y ou c o nju re d t h e D ark M ark ?”
“W e d id n't d o t h at! ” s a id H arry , g estu rin g u p a t t h e s k ull.
“W e d id n't d o a n yth in g!” s a id R on, w ho w as r u bbin g h is e lb ow a n d l o okin g
in dig nan tly a t h is f a th er. “ W hat d id y ou w an t t o a tta ck u s f o r? ”
“D o n ot lie , s ir !” s h oute d M r. C ro uch . H is w an d w as s till p oin tin g d ir e ctly
at R on, a n d h is e y es w ere p oppin g— he lo oked slig htly m ad . “ Y ou h av e b een
dis c o vere d a t t h e s c en e o f t h e c rim e!”
“B arty ,” w his p ere d a w itc h in a lo ng w oole n d re ssin g g ow n, “ th ey 'r e k id s,
Barty , t h ey 'd n ev er h av e b een a b le t o
“W here d id t h e M ark c o m e f ro m , y ou t h re e?” s a id M r. W easle y q uic k ly .
“O ver th ere ,” s a id H erm io ne s h ak ily , p oin tin g a t th e p la ce w here th ey h ad
heard th e v oic e. “ T here w as s o m eo ne b eh in d th e tr e es… th ey s h oute d w ord s—
an i n can ta tio n— ”
“O h, s to od o ver t h ere , d id t h ey ?” s a id M r. C ro uch , t u rn in g h is p oppin g e y es
on H erm io ne n ow , d is b elie f e tc h ed a ll o ver h is fa ce. “ S aid a n in can ta tio n, d id
th ey ? Y ou s e em v ery w ell in fo rm ed a b out h ow th at M ark is s u m moned , m is sy
—”
But n one o f th e M in is tr y w iz ard s a p art f ro m M r. C ro uch s e em ed to th in k it
re m ote ly lik ely th at H arry , R on, o r H erm io ne h ad c o nju re d th e sk ull; o n th e
co ntr a ry , a t H erm io ne's w ord s, th ey h ad a ll ra is e d th eir w an ds a g ain a n d w ere
poin tin g i n t h e d ir e ctio n s h e h ad i n dic ate d , s q uin tin g t h ro ugh t h e d ark t r e es.
“W e'r e to o la te ,” s a id th e w itc h in th e w oole n d re ssin g g ow n, s h ak in g h er
head . “ T hey 'l l h av e D is a p para te d .”
“I d on't th in k s o ,” s a id a w iz ard w ith a s c ru bby b ro w n b eard . I t w as A m os
Dig gory , C ed ric 's f a th er. “ O ur S tu nners w en t r ig ht th ro ugh th ose tr e es… T here 's

a g ood c h an ce w e g ot t h em …
“A m os, b e c are fu l! ” s a id a fe w o f th e w iz ard s w arn in gly a s M r. D ig gory
sq uare d his sh ould ers , ra is e d his w an d, m arc h ed acro ss th e cle arin g, an d
dis a p peare d in to th e d ark ness. H erm io ne w atc h ed h im v an is h w ith h er h an ds
over h er m outh .
A f e w s e co nds l a te r, t h ey h eard M r. D ig gory s h out.
“Y es! W e got th em ! T here 's so m eo ne here ! U nco nsc io us! It's — but—
blim ey..
“Y ou'v e g ot s o m eo ne?” s h oute d M r. C ro uch , s o undin g h ig hly d is b elie v in g.
“W ho? W ho i s i t? ”
They heard sn ap pin g tw ig s, th e ru stlin g of le av es, an d th en cru nch in g
fo ots te p s a s M r. D ig gory re em erg ed fro m b eh in d th e tr e es. H e w as c arry in g a
tin y, lim p fig ure in h is a rm s. H arry re co gniz ed th e te a to w el a t o nce. It w as
Win ky.
Mr. C ro uch d id n ot m ove o r s p eak a s M r. D ig gory d ep osite d h is e lf o n th e
gro und a t h is fe et. T he o th er M in is tr y w iz ard s w ere a ll s ta rin g a t M r. C ro uch .
For a f e w s e co nds C ro uch r e m ain ed t r a n sfix ed , h is e y es b la zin g i n h is w hite f a ce
as h e s ta re d d ow n a t W in ky. T hen h e a p peare d t o c o m e t o l if e a g ain .
“T his — can not— be,” h e s a id j e rk ily . “ N o— ”
He m oved q uic k ly aro und M r. D ig gory an d str o de o ff to w ard th e p la ce
where h e h ad f o und W in ky.
“N o p oin t, M r. C ro uch ,” M r. D ig gory c alle d a fte r h im . “ T here 's n o o ne e ls e
th ere .”
But M r. C ro uch d id n ot s e em p re p are d to ta k e h is w ord f o r it. T hey c o uld
hear h im m ovin g a ro und a n d th e ru stlin g o f le av es a s h e p ush ed th e b ush es
asid e, s e arc h in g.
“B it em barra ssin g,” M r. D ig gory sa id g rim ly , lo okin g d ow n at W in ky's
unco nsc io us f o rm . “ B arty C ro uch 's h ouse -e lf … I m ean t o s a y … ”
“C om e o ff i t, A m os,” s a id M r. W easle y q uie tly , “ y ou d on't s e rio usly t h in k i t
was t h e e lf ? T he D ark M ark 's a w iz ard 's s ig n. I t r e q uir e s a w an d.”
“Y eah ,” s a id M r. D ig gory , “ an d s h e h ad a w an d.”
“W hat? ” s a id M r. W easle y.
“H ere , lo ok.” M r. D ig gory h eld u p a w an d a n d s h ow ed it to M r. W easle y.
“H ad i t i n h er h an d. S o t h at's c la u se t h re e o f t h e C ode o f W an d U se b ro ken , f o r a
sta rt. N o n on-h um an c re atu re i s p erm itte d t o c arry o r u se a w an d.”
Ju st th en th ere w as a n oth er p op, a n d L udo B ag m an A ppara te d r ig ht n ex t to
Mr. W easle y. L ookin g b re ath le ss a n d d is o rie n ta te d , h e s p un o n t h e s p ot, g ogglin g
upw ard a t t h e e m era ld -g re en s k ull.
“T he D ark M ark !” he pan te d , alm ost tr a m plin g W in ky as he tu rn ed

in quir in gly to h is c o lle ag ues. “ W ho d id it? D id y ou g et th em ? B arry ! W hat's
goin g o n?”
Mr. C ro uch h ad re tu rn ed e m pty -h an ded . H is fa ce w as s till g hostly w hite ,
an d h is h an ds a n d h is t o oth bru sh m usta ch e w ere b oth t w itc h in g.
“W here h av e y ou b een , B arty ?” sa id B ag m an . “ W hy w ere n 't y ou a t th e
matc h ? Y our e lf w as s a v in g y ou a s e at to o— gulp in g g arg oyle s!” B ag m an h ad
ju st n otic ed W in ky l y in g a t h is f e et. “ W hat h ap pen ed t o h er? ”
“I h av e b een b usy , L udo,” s a id M r. C ro uch , s till ta lk in g in th e s a m e je rk y
fa sh io n, b are ly m ovin g h is l ip s. “ A nd m y e lf h as b een s tu nned .”
“S tu nned ? B y y ou l o t, y ou m ean ? B ut w hy— ?”
Com pre h en sio n daw ned su dden ly on B ag m an 's ro und, sh in y fa ce; he
lo oked u p a t t h e s k ull, d ow n a t W in ky, a n d t h en a t M r. C ro uch .
“N o!” h e s a id . “ W in ky? C onju re th e D ark M ark ? S he w ould n't k now h ow !
She'd n eed a w an d, f o r a s ta rt! ”
“A nd s h e h ad o ne,” s a id M r. D ig gory . “ I f o und h er h old in g o ne, L udo. I f i t's
all r ig ht w ith y ou, M r. C ro uch , I th in k w e s h ould h ear w hat s h e's g ot to s a y f o r
hers e lf .”
Cro uch g av e n o sig n th at h e h ad h eard M r. D ig gory , b ut M r. D ig gory
se em ed to ta k e h is sile n ce fo r a sse n t. H e ra is e d h is o w n w an d, p oin te d it a t
Win ky, a n d s a id , “ E nnerv ate !”
Win ky s tir re d f e eb ly . H er g re at b ro w n e y es o pen ed a n d s h e b lin ked s e v era l
tim es i n a b em use d s o rt o f w ay. W atc h ed b y t h e s ile n t w iz ard s, s h e r a is e d h ers e lf
sh ak ily i n to a s ittin g p ositio n.
She c au ght s ig ht o f M r. D ig gory 's f e et, a n d s lo w ly , tr e m ulo usly , r a is e d h er
ey es to s ta re u p in to h is f a ce; th en , m ore s lo w ly s till, s h e lo oked u p in to th e s k y.
Harry c o uld s e e th e f lo atin g s k ull r e fle cte d tw ic e in h er e n orm ous, g la ssy e y es.
She g av e a g asp , lo oked w ild ly aro und th e cro w ded cle arin g, an d b urs t in to
te rrif ie d s o bs.
“E lf !” s a id M r. D ig gory s te rn ly . “ D o y ou k now w ho I a m ? I 'm a m em ber o f
th e D ep artm en t f o r t h e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l o f M ag ic al C re atu re s!”
Win ky b eg an to ro ck b ack w ard an d fo rw ard o n th e g ro und, h er b re ath
co m in g in s h arp b urs ts . H arry w as r e m in ded f o rc ib ly o f D obby in h is m om en ts
of t e rrif ie d d is o bed ie n ce.
“A s y ou s e e, e lf , th e D ark M ark w as c o nju re d h ere a s h ort w hile a g o,” s a id
Mr. D ig gory . “ A nd y ou w ere d is c o vere d m om en ts la te r, rig ht b en eath it! A n
ex pla n atio n, i f y ou p le ase !”
“I— I— I i s n ot d oin g i t, s ir !” W in ky g asp ed . “ I i s n ot k now in g h ow , s ir !”
“Y ou w ere fo und w ith a w an d in your han d!” bark ed M r. D ig gory ,
bra n dis h in g it in fro nt o f h er. A nd a s th e w an d c au ght th e g re en lig ht th at w as

fillin g t h e c le arin g f ro m t h e s k ull a b ove, H arry r e co gniz ed i t
“H ey — th at's m in e!” h e s a id
Every one i n t h e c le arin g l o oked a t h im .
“E xcu se m e?” s a id M r. D ig gory , i n cre d ulo usly .
“T hat's m y w an d!” s a id H arry . “ I d ro pped i t! ”
“Y ou d ro pped it? ” r e p eate d M r. D ig gory in d is b elie f. “ Is th is a c o nfe ssio n?
You t h re w i t a sid e a fte r y ou c o nju re d t h e M ark ?”
“A m os, th in k w ho y ou'r e ta lk in g to !” sa id M r. W easle y, v ery a n grily . “ Is
Harry P otte r l ik ely t o c o nju re t h e D ark M ark ?”
“E r— of c o urs e n ot,” m um ble d M r. D ig gory . “ S orry … c arrie d a w ay..
“I d id n't d ro p it th ere , a n yw ay,” s a id H arry , je rk in g h is th um b to w ard th e
tr e es b en eath t h e s k ull. “ I m is se d i t r ig ht a fte r w e g ot i n to t h e w ood.”
“S o,” s a id M r. D ig gory , h is e y es h ard en in g a s h e tu rn ed to lo ok a t W in ky
ag ain , c o w erin g a t h is f e et. “ Y ou f o und th is w an d, e h , e lf ? A nd y ou p ic k ed it u p
an d t h ought y ou'd h av e s o m e f u n w ith i t, d id y ou?”
“I is n ot d oin g m ag ic w ith it, s ir !” s q ueale d W in ky, te ars s tr e am in g d ow n
th e s id es o f h er s q uash ed a n d b ulb ous n ose . “ I is … I is … I is ju st p ic k in g it u p,
sir ! i i s n ot m ak in g t h e D ark M ark , s ir , i i s n ot k now in g h ow !”
“It w asn 't h er!” s a id H erm io ne. S he lo oked v ery n erv ous, s p eak in g u p in
fro nt o f a ll th ese M in is tr y w iz ard s, y et d ete rm in ed a ll th e s a m e. “ W in ky's g ot a
sq ueak y little v oic e, a n d th e v oic e w e h eard d oin g th e in can ta tio n w as m uch
deep er!” S he lo oked a ro und a t H arry a n d R on, a p pealin g fo r th eir s u pport. “ It
did n't s o und a n yth in g l ik e W in ky, d id i t? ”
“N o,” s a id H arry , s h ak in g h is h ead . “ It d efin ite ly d id n't s o und l ik e a n e lf .”
“Y eah , i t w as a h um an v oic e,” s a id R on.
“W ell, w e'l l s o on s e e,” g ro w le d M r. D ig gory , l o okin g u nim pre sse d . “ T here 's
a s im ple w ay o f d is c o verin g th e la st s p ell a w an d p erfo rm ed , e lf , d id y ou k now
th at? ”
Win ky tr e m ble d a n d s h ook h er h ead fra n tic ally , h er e ars fla p pin g, a s M r.
Dig gory r a is e d h is o w n w an d a g ain a n d p la ced i t t ip t o t ip w ith H arry 's .
“P rio r I n can ta to !” r o are d M r. D ig gory .
Harry h eard H erm io ne g asp , h orrif ie d , a s a g ig an tic s e rp en t- to ngued s k ull
eru pte d fro m th e p oin t w here th e tw o w an ds m et, b ut it w as a m ere s h ad ow o f
th e g re en s k ull h ig h a b ove th em ; it lo oked a s th ough it w ere m ad e o f th ic k g ra y
sm oke: t h e g host o f a s p ell.
“D ele tr iu s!” M r. D ig gory s h oute d , a n d th e s m oky s k ull v an is h ed in a w is p
of s m oke.
“S o,” s a id M r. D ig gory w ith a k in d o f s a v ag e tr iu m ph, lo okin g d ow n u pon
Win ky, w ho w as s till s h ak in g c o nvuls iv ely .

“I i s n ot d oin g i t! ” s h e s q ueale d , h er e y es r o llin g i n t e rro r. “ I i s n ot, I i s n ot,
I i s n ot k now in g h ow ! I i s a g ood e lf , I i s n 't u sin g w an ds, I i s n 't k now in g h ow !”
“Y ou'v e b een c au ght re d -h an ded , e lf !” M r. D ig gory ro are d . “ C au ght w ith
th e g uilty w an d i n y our h an d!”
“A m os,” s a id M r. W easle y lo udly , “ th in k a b out it… p re cio us fe w w iz ard s
know h ow t o d o t h at s p ell… W here w ould s h e h av e l e arn ed i t? ”
“P erh ap s A m os is su ggestin g,” sa id M r. C ro uch , co ld an ger in ev ery
sy lla b le , “ th at I r o utin ely t e ach m y s e rv an ts t o c o nju re t h e D ark M ark ?”
There w as a d eep ly u nple asa n t sile n ce. A m os D ig gory lo oked h orrif ie d .
“M r. C ro uch … n ot… n ot a t a ll.
“Y ou h av e n ow c o m e v ery c lo se to a ccu sin g th e tw o p eo ple in th is c le arin g
who a re le ast lik ely to c o nju re th at M ark !” b ark ed M r. C ro uch . “ H arry P otte r—
an d m yse lf . I s u ppose y ou a re f a m ilia r w ith t h e b oy's s to ry , A m os? ”
“O f co urs e — ev ery one know s— ” m utte re d M r. D ig gory , lo okin g hig hly
dis c o m fo rte d .
“A nd I tr u st y ou re m em ber th e m an y p ro ofs I h av e g iv en , o ver a lo ng
care er, t h at I d esp is e a n d d ete st t h e D ark A rts a n d t h ose w ho p ra ctic e t h em ?” M r.
Cro uch s h oute d , h is e y es b ulg in g a g ain .
“M r. C ro uch , I — I n ev er s u ggeste d y ou h ad a n yth in g to d o w ith it! ” A m os
Dig gory m utte re d a g ain , n ow r e d den in g b eh in d h is s c ru bby b ro w n b eard .
“If y ou accu se m y elf , y ou accu se m e, D ig gory !” sh oute d M r. C ro uch .
“W here e ls e w ould s h e h av e l e arn ed t o c o nju re i t? ”
“S he— sh e m ig ht'v e p ic k ed i t u p a n yw here — ”
“P re cis e ly , A m os,” sa id M r. W easle y. “S he m ig ht hav e pic k ed it up
an yw here … W in ky?” h e sa id k in dly , tu rn in g to th e elf , b ut sh e flin ch ed as
th ough h e t o o w as s h outin g a t h er. “ W here e x actly d id y ou f in d H arry 's w an d?”
Win ky w as t w is tin g t h e h em o f h er t e a t o w el s o v io le n tly t h at i t w as f ra y in g
ben eath h er f in gers .
“I— I is fin din g it… fin din g it th ere , s ir … ” s h e w his p ere d , “ th ere … in th e
tr e es, s ir.
“Y ou s e e, A m os? ” s a id M r. W easle y. “ W hoev er c o nju re d th e M ark c o uld
hav e D is a p para te d rig ht a fte r th ey 'd d one it, le av in g H arry 's w an d b eh in d. A
cle v er th in g to d o, n ot u sin g th eir o w n w an d, w hic h c o uld h av e b etr a y ed th em .
And W in ky h ere h ad th e m is fo rtu ne to c o m e a cro ss th e w an d m om en ts la te r a n d
pic k i t u p.”
“B ut t h en , s h e'd h av e b een o nly a f e w f e et a w ay f ro m t h e r e al c u lp rit! ” s a id
Mr. D ig gory i m patie n tly . “ E lf ? D id y ou s e e a n yone?”
Win ky b eg an to tr e m ble w ors e th an e v er. H er g ia n t e y es f lic k ere d f ro m M r.
Dig gory , t o L udo B ag m an , a n d o nto M r. C ro uch . T hen s h e g ulp ed a n d s a id , “ I i s

se ein g n o o ne, s ir … n o o ne..
“A m os,” sa id M r. C ro uch c u rtly , “ I a m fu lly a w are th at, in th e o rd in ary
co urs e of ev en ts , you w ould w an t to ta k e W in ky in to your dep artm en t fo r
questio nin g. I a sk y ou, h ow ev er, t o a llo w m e t o d eal w ith h er.”
Mr. D ig gory l o oked a s t h ough h e d id n't t h in k m uch o f t h is s u ggestio n a t a ll,
but it w as c le ar to H arry th at M r. C ro uch w as s u ch a n im porta n t m em ber o f th e
Min is tr y t h at h e d id n ot d are r e fu se h im .
“Y ou m ay r e st a ssu re d t h at s h e w ill b e p unis h ed ,” M r. C ro uch a d ded c o ld ly .
“M -m -m aste r… ” W in ky sta m mere d , lo okin g u p a t M r. C ro uch , h er e y es
brim min g w ith t e ars . “ M -m -m aste r, p -p -p le ase … ”
Mr. C ro uch sta re d b ack , h is fa ce so m eh ow sh arp en ed , e ach lin e u pon it
more d eep ly e tc h ed . T here w as n o p ity i n h is g aze.
“W in ky has beh av ed to nig ht in a m an ner I w ould not hav e belie v ed
possib le ,” h e s a id s lo w ly . “ I t o ld h er t o r e m ain i n t h e t e n t. I t o ld h er t o s ta y t h ere
while I w en t to so rt o ut th e tr o uble . A nd I fin d th at sh e d is o bey ed m e. T his
mean s c lo th es.”
“N o!” sh rie k ed W in ky, pro str a tin g hers e lf at M r. C ro uch 's fe et. “N o,
maste r! N ot c lo th es, n ot c lo th es!”
Harry k new t h at t h e o nly w ay t o t u rn a h ouse -e lf f re e w as t o p re se n t i t w ith
pro per g arm en ts . I t w as p itif u l t o s e e t h e w ay W in ky c lu tc h ed a t h er t e a t o w el a s
sh e s o bbed o ver M r. C ro uch 's f e et.
“B ut sh e w as frig hte n ed !” H erm io ne burs t out an grily , gla rin g at M r.
Cro uch . “ Y our e lf 's s c are d o f h eig hts , a n d t h ose w iz ard s i n m ask s w ere l e v ita tin g
peo ple ! Y ou c an 't b la m e h er f o r w an tin g t o g et o ut o f t h eir w ay !”
Mr. C ro uch t o ok a s te p b ack w ard , f re ein g h im se lf f ro m c o nta ct w ith t h e e lf ,
whom h e w as s u rv ey in g a s t h ough s h e w ere s o m eth in g f ilth y a n d r o tte n t h at w as
co nta m in atin g h is o ver- s h in ed s h oes.
“I h av e n o u se fo r a h ouse -e lf w ho d is o bey s m e,” h e s a id c o ld ly , lo okin g
over a t H erm io ne. “ I h av e n o u se fo r a s e rv an t w ho fo rg ets w hat is d ue to h er
maste r, a n d t o h er m aste r's r e p uta tio n.”
Win ky w as c ry in g s o h ard th at h er s o bs e ch oed a ro und th e c le arin g. T here
was a v ery n asty s ile n ce, w hic h w as e n ded b y M r. W easle y, w ho s a id q uie tly ,
“W ell, I th in k I'l l ta k e m y lo t b ack to th e te n t, if n obody's g ot a n y o bje ctio ns.
Am os, t h at w an d's t o ld u s a ll i t c an — if H arry c o uld h av e i t b ack , p le ase — ”
Mr. D ig gory h an ded H arry h is w an d a n d H arry p ock ete d i t.
“C om e o n, y ou th re e,” M r. W easle y s a id q uie tly . B ut H erm io ne d id n't s e em
to w an t to m ove; h er e y es w ere still u pon th e so bbin g e lf . “ H erm io ne!” M r.
Weasle y s a id , m ore u rg en tly . S he tu rn ed a n d f o llo w ed H arry a n d R on o ut o f th e
cle arin g a n d o ff t h ro ugh t h e t r e es.

“W hat's g oin g to h ap pen to W in ky?” s a id H erm io ne, th e m om en t th ey h ad
le ft t h e c le arin g.
“I d on't k now ,” s a id M r. W easle y.
“T he w ay th ey w ere tr e atin g h er!” s a id H erm io ne f u rio usly . “ M r. D ig gory ,
callin g h er 'e lf ' a ll t h e t im e… a n d M r. C ro uch ! H e k now s s h e d id n't d o i t a n d h e's
still g oin g to s a ck h er! H e d id n't c are h ow frig hte n ed s h e'd b een , o r h ow u pse t
sh e w as— it w as l ik e s h e w asn 't e v en h um an !”
“W ell, s h e's n ot,” s a id R on.
Herm io ne r o unded o n h im .
“T hat d oesn 't m ean s h e h asn 't g ot f e elin gs, R on. I t's d is g ustin g t h e w ay — ”
“H erm io ne, I a g re e w ith y ou,” s a id M r. W easle y q uic k ly , b eck onin g h er o n,
“b ut n ow i s n ot t h e t im e t o d is c u ss e lf r ig hts . I w an t t o g et b ack t o t h e t e n t a s f a st
as w e c an . W hat h ap pen ed t o t h e o th ers ? ”
“W e lo st th em in th e d ark ,” s a id R on. “ D ad , w hy w as e v ery one s o u ptig ht
ab out t h at s k ull t h in g?”
“I'l l e x pla in e v ery th in g b ack a t t h e t e n t,” s a id M r. W easle y t e n se ly .
But w hen t h ey r e ach ed t h e e d ge o f t h e w ood, t h eir p ro gre ss w as i m ped ed . A
la rg e c ro w d o f frig hte n ed -lo okin g w itc h es a n d w iz ard s w as c o ngre g ate d th ere ,
an d w hen th ey sa w M r. W easle y c o m in g to w ard th em , m an y o f th em su rg ed
fo rw ard .
“W hat's g oin g o n i n t h ere ?”
“W ho c o nju re d i t? ”
“A rth ur— it's n ot— Him ?”
“O f c o urs e it's n ot H im ,” sa id M r. W easle y im patie n tly . “ W e d on't k now
who i t w as; i t l o oks l ik e t h ey D is a p para te d . N ow e x cu se m e, p le ase , I w an t t o g et
to b ed .”
He le d H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne th ro ugh th e c ro w d a n d b ack in to th e
cam psite . A ll w as q uie t n ow ; th ere w as n o s ig n o f th e m ask ed w iz ard s, th ough
se v era l r u in ed t e n ts w ere s till s m okin g.
Charlie 's h ead w as p okin g o ut o f t h e b oys' t e n t.
“D ad , w hat's g oin g o n?” h e c alle d th ro ugh th e d ark . “ F re d , G eo rg e, a n d
Gin ny g ot b ack o kay, b ut t h e o th ers — ”
“I'v e g ot t h em h ere ,” s a id M r. W easle y, b en din g d ow n a n d e n te rin g t h e t e n t.
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne e n te re d a fte r h im .
Bill w as s ittin g a t th e s m all k itc h en ta b le , h old in g a b ed sh eet to h is a rm ,
whic h w as b le ed in g p ro fu se ly . C harlie h ad a la rg e r ip in h is s h ir t, a n d P erc y w as
sp ortin g a b lo ody n ose . F re d , G eo rg e, a n d G in ny l o oked u nhurt, t h ough s h ak en .
“D id y ou g et th em , D ad ?” s a id B ill s h arp ly . “ T he p ers o n w ho c o nju re d th e
Mark ?”

“N o,” sa id M r. W easle y. “W e fo und B arry C ro uch 's elf h old in g H arry 's
wan d, b ut w e'r e n one t h e w is e r a b out w ho a ctu ally c o nure d t h e M ark .”
“W hat? ” s a id B ill, C harlie , a n d P erc y t o geth er. “ H arry 's w an d?” s a id F re d .
“M r. C ro uch 's e lf ” s a id P erc y, s o undin g t h unders tr u ck .
With so m e assis ta n ce fro m H arry , R on, an d H erm io ne, M r. W easle y
ex pla in ed w hat h ad h ap pen ed in th e w oods. W hen th ey h ad f in is h ed th eir s to ry ,
Perc y s w elle d i n dig nan tly .
“W ell, M r. C ro uch is q uite rig ht to g et rid o f a n e lf lik e th at! ” h e sa id .
“R unnin g a w ay w hen h e'd e x pre ssly to ld h er n ot to … e m barra ssin g h im in f ro nt
of t h e w hole M in is tr y … h ow w ould t h at h av e l o oked , i f s h e'd b een b ro ught u p i n
fro nt o f t h e D ep artm en t f o r t h e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l— ”
“S he d id n't d o a n yth in g— sh e w as ju st in th e w ro ng p la ce a t th e w ro ng
tim e!” H erm io ne s n ap ped a t P erc y, w ho lo oked v ery ta k en a b ack . H erm io ne h ad
alw ay s g ot o n f a ir ly w ell w ith P erc y — bette r, i n deed , t h an a n y o f t h e o th ers .
“H erm io ne, a w iz ard i n M r. C ro uch 's p ositio n c an 't a ff o rd a h ouse -e lf w ho's
goin g t o r u n a m ok w ith a w an d!” s a id P erc y p om pously , r e co verin g h im se lf .
“S he d id n't ru n a m ok!” s h oute d H erm io ne. “ S he ju st p ic k ed it u p o ff th e
gro und!”
“L ook, can so m eo ne ju st ex pla in w hat th at sk ull th in g w as? ” sa id R on
im patie n tly . “ It w asn 't h urtin g a n yone… W hy's i t s u ch a b ig d eal? ”
“I to ld y ou, it's Y ou-K now -W ho's sy m bol, R on,” sa id H erm io ne, b efo re
an yone e ls e c o uld a n sw er. “ I re ad a b out it in T he R is e a n d F all o f th e D ark
Arts .”
“A nd it h asn 't b een s e en f o r th ir te en y ears ,” s a id M r. W easle y q uie tly . “ O f
co urs e peo ple pan ic k ed … it w as alm ost lik e se ein g Y ou-K now -W ho back
ag ain .”
“I d on't g et it,” s a id R on, f ro w nin g. “ I m ean … it's s till o nly a s h ap e in th e
sk y…
“R on, Y ou-K now -W ho a n d h is fo llo w ers s e n t th e D ark M ark in to th e a ir
when ev er th ey k ille d ,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ T he te rro r it in sp ir e d … y ou h av e n o
id ea, y ou'r e to o y oung. Ju st p ic tu re c o m in g h om e a n d fin din g th e D ark M ark
hoverin g o ver y our h ouse , a n d k now in g w hat y ou'r e a b out to f in d in sid e… ” M r.
Weasle y w in ced . “ E very one's w ors t f e ar… t h e v ery w ors t..
There w as s ile n ce fo r a m om en t. T hen B ill, re m ovin g th e s h eet fro m h is
arm to c h eck o n h is c u t, s a id , “ W ell, it d id n't h elp u s to nig ht, w hoev er c o nju re d
it. It sc are d th e D eath Eate rs aw ay th e m om en t th ey sa w it. They all
Dis a p para te d b efo re w e'd g ot n ear e n ough t o u nm ask a n y o f t h em . W e c au ght t h e
Roberts e s b efo re th ey h it th e g ro und, th ough. T hey 'r e h av in g th eir m em orie s
modif ie d r ig ht n ow .”

“D eath E ate rs ? ” s a id H arry . “ W hat a re D eath E ate rs ? ”
“It's w hat Y ou-K now -W ho's su pporte rs calle d th em se lv es,” sa id B ill. “I
th in k w e sa w w hat's le ft of th em to nig ht— th e ones w ho m an ag ed to keep
th em se lv es o ut o f A zk ab an , a n yw ay.”
“W e c an 't p ro ve it w as th em , B ill,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ T hough it p ro bab ly
was,” h e a d ded h opele ssly .
“Y eah , I b et i t w as!” s a id R on s u dden ly . “ D ad , w e m et D ra co M alf o y i n t h e
woods, a n d h e a s g ood a s t o ld u s h is d ad w as o ne o f t h ose n utte rs i n m ask s! A nd
we a ll k now t h e M alf o ys w ere r ig ht i n w ith Y ou-K now -W ho!”
“B ut w hat w ere Vold em ort's su pporte rs — ” H arry beg an . Every body
flin ch ed — lik e m ost o f t h e w iz ard in g w orld , t h e W easle y s a lw ay s a v oid ed s a y in g
Vold em ort's n am e. “ S orry ,” s a id H arry q uic k ly . “ W hat w ere Y ou-K now -W ho's
su pporte rs u p t o , l e v ita tin g M uggle s? I m ean , w hat w as t h e p oin t? ”
“T he p oin t? ” s a id M r. W easle y w ith a h ollo w l a u gh. “ H arry , t h at's t h eir i d ea
of f u n. H alf th e M uggle k illin gs b ack w hen Y ou-K now -W ho w as in p ow er w ere
done fo r fu n. I su ppose th ey had a fe w drin ks to nig ht an d co uld n't re sis t
re m in din g u s a ll th at lo ts o f th em are still at la rg e. A n ic e little re u nio n fo r
th em ,” h e f in is h ed d is g uste d ly .
“B ut if th ey w ere th e D eath E ate rs , w hy d id th ey D is a p para te w hen th ey
sa w th e D ark M ark ?” s a id R on. “ T hey 'd h av e b een p le ase d to s e e it, w ould n't
th ey ?”
“U se y our b ra in s, R on,” s a id B ill. “ If th ey re ally w ere D eath E ate rs , th ey
work ed v ery h ard t o k eep o ut o f A zk ab an w hen Y ou-K now -W ho l o st p ow er, a n d
to ld a ll s o rts o f l ie s a b out h im f o rc in g t h em t o k ill a n d t o rtu re p eo ple . I b et t h ey 'd
be e v en m ore f rig hte n ed th an th e r e st o f u s to s e e h im c o m e b ack . T hey d en ie d
th ey 'd e v er b een in volv ed w ith h im w hen h e lo st h is p ow ers , a n d w en t b ack to
th eir d aily l iv es… I d on't r e ck on h e'd b e o ver- p le ase d w ith t h em , d o y ou?”
“S o… w hoev er c o nju re d th e D ark M ark … ” s a id H erm io ne s lo w ly , “ w ere
th ey d oin g i t t o s h ow s u pport f o r t h e D eath E ate rs , o r t o s c are t h em a w ay ?”
“Y our g uess is a s g ood a s o urs , H erm io ne,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ B ut I 'l l te ll
you th is … it w as o nly th e D eath E ate rs w ho e v er k new h ow to c o nju re it. I 'd b e
very s u rp ris e d if th e p ers o n w ho d id it h ad n't b een a D eath E ate r o nce, e v en if
th ey 'r e n ot n ow .. L is te n , it's v ery la te , a n d if y our m oth er h ears w hat's h ap pen ed
sh e'l l b e w orrie d s ic k . W e'l l g et a f e w m ore h ours s le ep a n d th en tr y a n d g et a n
early P ortk ey o ut o f h ere .”
Harry g ot b ack in to h is b unk w ith h is h ead b uzzin g. H e k new h e o ught to
fe el e x hau ste d : It w as n early th re e in th e m orn in g, b ut h e fe lt w id e-a w ak e—
wid e-a w ak e, a n d w orrie d .
Thre e d ay s a g o— it f e lt lik e m uch lo nger, b ut it h ad o nly b een th re e d ay s—

he h ad a w oken w ith h is s c ar b urn in g. A nd to nig ht, f o r th e f ir s t tim e in th ir te en
years , L ord V old em ort's m ark h ad a p peare d in th e sk y. W hat d id th ese th in gs
mean ?
He t h ought o f t h e l e tte r h e h ad w ritte n t o S ir iu s b efo re l e av in g P riv et D riv e.
Would S ir iu s h av e g otte n it y et? W hen w ould h e r e p ly ? H arry la y lo okin g u p a t
th e c an vas, b ut n o f ly in g f a n ta sie s c am e to h im n ow to e ase h im to s le ep , a n d it
was a l o ng t im e a fte r C harlie 's s n ore s f ille d t h e t e n t t h at H arry f in ally d ozed o ff .

C H APT ER T EN
M AY H EM A T T H E M IN IS T R Y
Mr. W easle y w oke th em a fte r o nly a fe w h ours sle ep . H e u se d m ag ic to
p ack u p th e te n ts , a n d th ey le ft th e c am psite a s q uic k ly a s p ossib le , p assin g M r.
R oberts a t th e d oor o f h is c o tta g e. M r. R oberts h ad a s tr a n ge, d azed lo ok a b out
h im , a n d h e w av ed t h em o ff w ith a v ag ue “ M erry C hris tm as.”
“H e'l l b e a ll r ig ht,” s a id M r. W easle y q uie tly a s th ey m arc h ed o ff o nto th e
m oor. “S om etim es, w hen a p ers o n's m em ory 's m odif ie d , it m ak es h im a b it
d is o rie n ta te d fo r a w hile … an d th at w as a b ig th in g th ey h ad to m ak e h im
f o rg et.”
They h eard u rg en t v oic es a s th ey a p pro ach ed th e s p ot w here th e P ortk ey s
l a y, a n d w hen t h ey r e ach ed i t, t h ey f o und a g re at n um ber o f w itc h es a n d w iz ard s
g ath ere d a ro und B asil, th e k eep er o f th e P ortk ey s, a ll c la m orin g to g et a w ay
f ro m th e c am psite a s q uic k ly a s p ossib le . M r. W easle y h ad a h urrie d d is c u ssio n
w ith B asil; th ey jo in ed th e q ueu e, a n d w ere a b le to ta k e a n o ld r u bber tir e b ack
t o S to ats h ead H ill b efo re th e su n h ad re ally ris e n . T hey w alk ed b ack th ro ugh
O tte ry S t. C atc h pole a n d u p th e d am p la n e to w ard th e B urro w in th e d aw n lig ht,
t a lk in g v ery little b ecau se th ey w ere so e x hau ste d , a n d th in kin g lo ngin gly o f
t h eir b re ak fa st. A s t h ey r o unded t h e c o rn er a n d t h e B urro w c am e i n to v ie w , a c ry
e ch oed a lo ng t h e l a n e.
“O h t h an k g oodness, t h an k g oodness!”
Mrs . W easle y, w ho h ad e v id en tly b een w aitin g fo r th em in th e fro nt y ard ,
c am e r u nnin g t o w ard t h em , s till w earin g h er b ed ro om s lip pers , h er f a ce p ale a n d
s tr a in ed , a r o lle d -u p c o py o f t h e D aily P ro phet c lu tc h ed i n h er h an d.
“A rth ur— I'v e b een s o w orrie d — so w orrie d -”
She flu ng h er a rm s a ro und M r. W easle y 's n eck , a n d th e D aily P ro phet fe ll
o ut o f h er lim p h an d o nto th e g ro und. L ookin g d ow n, H arry s a w th e h ead lin e:
S C EN ES O F T ER RO R A T T H E Q UID DIT C H W ORLD C U P, c o m ple te w ith a
t w in klin g b la ck -a n d-w hite p hoto gra p h o f t h e D ark M ark o ver t h e t r e eto ps.
“Y ou'r e all rig ht,” M rs . W easle y m utte re d dis tr a cte d ly , re le asin g M r.
W easle y a n d s ta rin g a ro und a t t h em a ll w ith r e d e y es, “ y ou'r e a liv e… O h b oys..
And to e v ery body's s u rp ris e , s h e s e iz ed F re d a n d G eo rg e a n d p ulle d th em
b oth i n to s u ch a t ig ht h ug t h at t h eir h ead s b an ged t o geth er.
“O uch ! M um — you'r e s tr a n glin g u s— ”
“I s h oute d a t y ou b efo re y ou le ft! ” M rs . W easle y s a id , s ta rtin g to s o b. “ It's
a ll I 'v e b een th in kin g a b out! W hat if Y ou-K now -W ho h ad g ot y ou, a n d th e la st

th in g I e v er s a id to y ou w as th at y ou d id n't g et e n ough O W . L . s ? O h F re d …
Geo rg e..”
“C om e on, now , M olly , w e'r e all perfe ctly okay,” sa id M r. W easle y
so oth in gly , p ris in g h er o ff th e tw in s an d le ad in g h er b ack to w ard th e h ouse .
“B ill,” h e a d ded in a n u nderto ne, “ p ic k u p th at p ap er, I w an t to se e w hat it
sa y s… ”
When t h ey w ere a ll c ra m med i n to t h e t in y k itc h en , a n d H erm io ne h ad m ad e
Mrs . W easle y a cu p o f v ery str o ng te a, in to w hic h M r. W easle y in sis te d o n
pourin g a s h ot o f O gden s O ld F ir e w his k ey, B ill h an ded h is f a th er t h e n ew sp ap er.
Mr. W easle y s c an ned t h e f ro nt p ag e w hile P erc y l o oked o ver h is s h ould er.
“I k new it,” sa id M r. W easle y h eav ily . “ M in is tr y b lu nders … c u lp rits n ot
ap pre h en ded … la x se cu rity … D ark w iz ard s ru nnin g unch eck ed … natio nal
dis g ra ce… W ho w ro te t h is ? A h… o f c o urs e … R ita S keete r.”
“T hat w om an 's g ot it in fo r th e M in is tr y o f M ag ic !” s a id P erc y fu rio usly .
“L ast w eek sh e w as sa y in g w e'r e w astin g o ur tim e q uib blin g a b out c au ld ro n
th ic k ness, w hen w e s h ould b e s ta m pin g o ut v am pir e s! A s i f i t w asn 't s p ecif ic ally
sta te d in p ara g ra p h tw elv e o f th e G uid elin es fo r th e T re atm en t o f N on-W iz ard
Part- H um an s— ”
“D o u s a f a v or, P erc e,” s a id B ill, y aw nin g, “ an d s h ut u p.”
“I'm m en tio ned ,” s a id M r. W easle y, h is e y es w id en in g b eh in d h is g la sse s a s
he r e ach ed t h e b otto m o f t h e D aily P ro phet a rtic le .
“W here ?” s p lu tte re d M rs . W easle y, c h okin g o n h er te a a n d w his k ey. “ If I 'd
se en t h at, I 'd h av e k now n y ou w ere a liv e!”
“N ot b y n am e,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ L is te n to th is : 'I f th e te rrif ie d w iz ard s
an d w itc h es w ho w aite d b re ath le ssly f o r n ew s a t th e e d ge o f th e w ood e x pecte d
re assu ra n ce fro m th e M in is tr y ofM ag ic , th ey w ere sa d ly dis a p poin te d . A
Min is tr y o ff ic ia l em erg ed so m e tim e afte r th e ap peara n ce o f th e D ark M ark
alle g in g th at n obody h ad b een h urt, b ut re flis in g to g iv e a n y m ore in fo rm atio n.
Wheth er th is s ta te m en t w ill b e e n ough to q uash th e ru m ors th at s e v era l b odie s
were re m oved fro m th e w oods a n h our la te r, re m ain s to b e s e en . ' O h re ally ,”
sa id M r. W easle y i n e x asp era tio n, h an din g t h e p ap er t o P erc y. “ N obody w as h urt.
What w as I s u ppose d t o s a y ? R um ors t h at s e v era l b odie s w ere r e m oved f ro m t h e
woods… w ell, t h ere c erta in ly w ill b e r u m ors n ow s h e's p rin te d t h at.”
He h eav ed a d eep s ig h. “ M olly , I 'm g oin g to h av e to g o in to th e o ff ic e; th is
is g oin g t o t a k e s o m e s m ooth in g o ver.”
“I'l l c o m e w ith y ou, F ath er,” s a id P erc y im porta n tly . “ M r. C ro uch w ill n eed
all h an ds o n d eck . A nd I c an g iv e h im m y c au ld ro n r e p ort i n p ers o n.”
He b ustle d o ut o f th e k itc h en . M rs . W easle y lo oked m ost u pse t. “ A rth ur,
you'r e su ppose d to b e o n h olid ay ! T his h asn 't g ot an yth in g to d o w ith y our

off ic e; s u re ly t h ey c an h an dle t h is w ith out y ou?”
“I'v e g ot to g o, M olly ,” s a id M r. W easle y. “ I'v e m ad e th in gs w ors e . I 'l l ju st
ch an ge i n to m y r o bes a n d I 'l l b e o ff … ”
“M rs . W easle y,” s a id H arry s u dden ly , u nab le to c o nta in h im se lf , “ H ed w ig
hasn 't a rriv ed w ith a l e tte r f o r m e, h as s h e?”
“H ed w ig , d ear? ” sa id M rs . W easle y d is tr a cte d ly . “N o… n o, th ere h asn 't
been a n y p ost a t a ll.”
Ron a n d H erm io ne lo oked c u rio usly a t H arry . W ith a m ean in gfu l lo ok a t
both o f t h em h e s a id , “ A ll r ig ht i f I g o a n d d um p m y s tu ff i n y our r o om , R on?”
“Y eah … t h in k I w ill t o o,” s a id R on a t o nce. “ H erm io ne?”
“Y es,” s h e s a id q uic k ly , a n d th e th re e o f th em m arc h ed o ut o f th e k itc h en
an d u p t h e s ta ir s .
“W hat's u p, H arry ?” s a id R on, th e m om en t th ey h ad c lo se d th e d oor o f th e
attic r o om b eh in d t h em .
“T here 's s o m eth in g I h av en 't to ld y ou,” H arry s a id . “ O n S atu rd ay m orn in g,
I w oke u p w ith m y s c ar h urtin g a g ain .”
Ron's a n d H erm io ne's r e actio ns w ere a lm ost e x actly a s H arry h ad im ag in ed
th em b ack i n h is b ed ro om o n P riv et D riv e. H erm io ne g asp ed a n d s ta rte d m ak in g
su ggestio ns a t o nce, m en tio nin g a n um ber o f re fe re n ce b ooks, a n d e v ery body
fro m A lb us D um ble d ore to M ad am P om fre y, th e H ogw arts n urs e . R on s im ply
lo oked d um bstr u ck .
“B ut— he w asn 't th ere , w as h e? Y ou-K now -W ho? I m ean — la st tim e y our
sc ar k ep t h urtin g, h e w as a t H ogw arts , w asn 't h e?”
“I'm s u re h e w asn 't o n P riv et D riv e,” s a id H arry . “ B ut I w as d re am in g a b out
him … h im a n d P ete r— you k now , W orm ta il. I c an 't r e m em ber a ll o f it n ow , b ut
th ey w ere p lo ttin g t o k ill… s o m eo ne.”
He h ad te ete re d fo r a m om en t o n th e v erg e o f sa y in g “ m e,” b ut c o uld n't
brin g h im se lf t o m ak e H erm io ne l o ok a n y m ore h orrif ie d t h an s h e a lr e ad y d id .
“It w as o nly a d re am ,” s a id R on b ra cin gly . “ Ju st a n ig htm are .”
“Y eah , b ut w as i t, t h ough?” s a id H arry , t u rn in g t o l o ok o ut o f t h e w in dow a t
th e b rig hte n in g s k y. “ It's w eir d , i s n 't i t? … M y s c ar h urts , a n d t h re e d ay s l a te r t h e
Death E ate rs a re o n t h e m arc h , a n d V old em ort's s ig n's u p i n t h e s k y a g ain .”
“D on't — sa y — his — nam e!” R on h is se d t h ro ugh g ritte d t e eth .
“A nd r e m em ber w hat P ro fe sso r T re la w ney s a id ?” H arry w en t o n, ig norin g
Ron. “ A t t h e e n d o f l a st y ear? ”
Pro fe sso r T re la w ney w as th eir D iv in atio n te ach er a t H ogw arts . H erm io ne's
te rrif ie d l o ok v an is h ed a s s h e l e t o ut a d eris iv e s n ort.
“O h H arry , y ou are n 't g oin g to p ay atte n tio n to an yth in g th at o ld fra u d
sa y s? ”

“Y ou w ere n 't th ere ,” sa id H arry . “Y ou did n't hear her. T his tim e w as
dif f e re n t. I to ld y ou, s h e w en t in to a tr a n ce— a r e al o ne. A nd s h e s a id th e D ark
Lord w ould ris e a g ain … g re ate r a n d m ore te rrib le th an e v er b efo re … a n d h e'd
man ag e it b ecau se h is se rv an t w as g oin g to g o b ack to h im … a n d th at n ig ht
Worm ta il e sc ap ed .”
There w as a s ile n ce in w hic h R on fid gete d a b se n tm in ded ly w ith a h ole in
his C hudle y C an nons b ed sp re ad .
“W hy w ere y ou ask in g if H ed w ig h ad co m e, H arry ?” H erm io ne ask ed .
“A re y ou e x pectin g a l e tte r? ”
“I to ld S ir iu s a b out m y s c ar,” s a id H arry , s h ru ggin g. “ I'm w aitin g fo r h is
an sw er.”
“G ood th in kin g!” sa id R on, h is e x pre ssio n c le arin g. “ I b et S ir iu s'l l k now
what t o d o!”
“I h oped h e'd g et b ack t o m e q uic k ly ,” s a id H arry .
“B ut w e d on't k now w here S ir iu s is … h e c o uld b e in A fric a o r s o m ew here ,
co uld n't h e?” sa id H erm io ne re aso nab ly . “ H ed w ig 's n ot g oin g to m an ag e th at
jo urn ey i n a f e w d ay s.”
“Y eah , I k now ,” s a id H arry , b ut t h ere w as a l e ad en f e elin g i n h is s to m ach a s
he l o oked o ut o f t h e w in dow a t t h e H ed w ig -fre e s k y.
“C om e a n d h av e a g am e o f Q uid ditc h in th e o rc h ard , H arry ” sa id R on.
“C om e o n— th re e o n th re e, B ill a n d C harlie a n d F re d a n d G eo rg e w ill p la y …
You c an t r y o ut t h e W ro nsk i F ein t… ”
“R on,” s a id H erm io ne, in a n I-d on't - th in k-y ou'r e -b ein g-v ery -s e n sitiv e s o rt
of v oic e, “ H arry d oesn 't w an t to p la y Q uid ditc h rig ht n ow … H e's w orrie d , a n d
he's t ir e d … W e a ll n eed t o g o t o b ed … ”
“Y eah , I w an t to p la y Q uid ditc h ,” s a id H arry s u dden ly . “ H an g o n, I'l l g et
my F ir e b olt.”
Herm io ne le ft th e r o om , m utte rin g s o m eth in g th at s o unded v ery m uch lik e
“B oys.”
Neith er M r. W easle y n or P erc y w as a t h om e m uch o ver t h e f o llo w in g w eek .
Both le ft th e h ouse each m orn in g b efo re th e re st o f th e fa m ily g ot u p, an d
re tu rn ed w ell a fte r d in ner e v ery n ig ht.
“It's b een an ab so lu te u pro ar,” P erc y to ld th em im porta n tly th e S unday
ev en in g b efo re th ey w ere d ue to r e tu rn to H ogw arts . “ I'v e b een p uttin g o ut f ir e s
all w eek . P eo ple k eep se n din g H ow le rs , an d o f co urs e , if y ou d on't o pen a
How le r s tr a ig ht a w ay, it e x plo des. S co rc h m ark s a ll o ver m y d esk a n d m y b est
quill r e d uced t o c in ders .”
“W hy a re th ey a ll s e n din g H ow le rs ? ” a sk ed G in ny, w ho w as m en din g h er
co py o f O ne T housa n d M ag ic al H erb s a n d F ungi w ith S pello ta p e o n th e r u g in

fro nt o f t h e l iv in g r o om f ir e .
“C om pla in in g a b out se cu rity a t th e W orld C up,” sa id P erc y. “ T hey w an t
co m pen sa tio n f o r th eir r u in ed p ro perty . M undungus F le tc h er's p ut in a c la im f o r
a tw elv e-b ed ro om ed te n t w ith e n -s u ite J a cu zzi, b ut I 'v e g ot h is n um ber. I k now
fo r a f a ct h e w as s le ep in g u nder a c lo ak p ro pped o n s tic k s.”
Mrs . W easle y g la n ced a t th e g ra n dfa th er c lo ck in th e c o rn er. H arry lik ed
th is clo ck . It w as co m ple te ly use le ss if you w an te d to know th e tim e, but
oth erw is e v ery in fo rm ativ e. It h ad n in e g old en h an ds, a n d e ach o f th em w as
en gra v ed w ith o ne o f th e W easle y fa m ily 's n am es. T here w ere n o n um era ls
aro und th e fa ce, but desc rip tio ns of w here each fa m ily m em ber m ig ht be.
“H om e,” “ sc h ool,” a n d “ w ork ” w ere t h ere , b ut t h ere w as a ls o “ tr a v elin g,” “ lo st,”
“h osp ita l,” “ p ris o n,” a n d, i n t h e p ositio n w here t h e n um ber t w elv e w ould b e o n a
norm al c lo ck , “ m orta l p eril.”
Eig ht o f th e h an ds w ere c u rre n tly p oin tin g to th e “ h om e” p ositio n, b ut M r.
Weasle y 's , w hic h w as th e lo ngest, w as still p oin tin g to “ w ork .” M rs . W easle y
sig hed .
“Y our f a th er h asn 't h ad to g o in to th e o ff ic e o n w eek en ds s in ce th e d ay s o f
You-K now -W ho,” sh e sa id . “T hey 'r e w ork in g h im fa r to o h ard . H is d in ner's
goin g t o b e r u in ed i f h e d oesn 't c o m e h om e s o on.”
“W ell, F ath er f e els h e's g ot to m ak e u p f o r h is m is ta k e a t th e m atc h , d oesn 't
he?” s a id P erc y. “ If t r u th b e t o ld , h e w as a t a d u nw is e t o m ak e a p ublic s ta te m en t
with out c le arin g i t w ith h is H ead o f D ep artm en t f ir s t— ”
“D on't y ou d are b la m e y our fa th er fo r w hat th at w re tc h ed S keete r w om an
wro te !” s a id M rs . W easle y, f la rin g u p a t o nce.
“If D ad had n't sa id an yth in g, old R ita w ould ju st hav e sa id it w as
dis g ra cefu l th at n obody f ro m th e M in is tr y h ad c o m men te d ,” s a id B ill, w ho w as
pla y in g ch ess w ith Ron. “R ita Skeete r nev er m ak es an yone lo ok good.
Rem em ber, s h e in te rv ie w ed a ll th e G rin gotts ' C harm B re ak ers o nce, a n d c alle d
me 'a l o ng-h air e d p illo ck '? ”
“W ell, it is a b it lo ng, d ear,” s a id M rs . W easle y g en tly . “ If y ou'd ju st le t m e
—”
“N o, M um .”
Rain la sh ed a g ain st th e liv in g ro om w in dow . H erm io ne w as im mers e d in
The S ta n dard B ook of S pells , G ra d e 4, co pie s of w hic h M rs . W easle y had
bought f o r h er, H arry , a n d R on in D ia g on A lle y. C harlie w as d arn in g a f ir e p ro of
bala cla v a. H arry w as polis h in g his Fir e b olt, th e bro om stic k se rv ic in g kit
Herm io ne h ad g iv en h im fo r h is th ir te en th b ir th day o pen a t h is fe et. F re d a n d
Geo rg e w ere s ittin g in a fa r c o rn er, q uills o ut, ta lk in g in w his p ers , th eir h ead s
ben t o ver a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t.

“W hat a re y ou tw o u p to ?” sa id M rs . W easle y sh arp ly , h er e y es o n th e
tw in s.
“H om ew ork ,” s a id F re d v ag uely .
“D on't b e r id ic u lo us, y ou'r e s till o n h olid ay,” s a id M rs . W easle y.
“Y eah , w e'v e l e ft i t a b it l a te ,” s a id G eo rg e.
“Y ou'r e n ot b y a n y c h an ce w ritin g o ut a n ew o rd er fo rm , a re y ou?” sa id
Mrs . W easle y sh re w dly . “Y ou w ould n't be th in kin g of re sta rtin g W easle y s'
Wiz ard W heezes, b y a n y c h an ce?”
“N ow , M um ,” s a id F re d , l o okin g u p a t h er, a p ain ed l o ok o n h is f a ce. “ If t h e
Hogw arts E xpre ss c ra sh ed to m orro w , a n d G eo rg e a n d I d ie d , h ow w ould y ou
fe el to k now th at th e la st th in g w e ev er h eard fro m y ou w as an u nfo unded
accu sa tio n?”
Every one l a u ghed , e v en M rs . W easle y.
“O h y our f a th er's c o m in g!” s h e s a id s u dden ly , l o okin g u p a t t h e c lo ck a g ain .
Mr. W easle y 's han d had su dden ly sp un fro m “w ork ” to “tr a v elin g”; a
se co nd l a te r i t h ad s h uddere d t o a h alt o n “ h om e” w ith t h e o th ers , a n d t h ey h eard
him c allin g f ro m t h e k itc h en .
“C om in g, A rth ur!” c alle d M rs . W easle y, h urry in g o ut o f t h e r o om .
A fe w m om en ts la te r, M r. W easle y cam e in to th e w arm liv in g ro om
carry in g h is d in ner o n a t r a y. H e l o oked c o m ple te ly e x hau ste d .
“W ell, th e f a t's r e ally in th e f ir e n ow ,” h e to ld M rs . W easle y a s h e s a t d ow n
in a n a rm ch air n ear th e h earth a n d to yed u nen th usia stic ally w ith h is s o m ew hat
sh riv ele d c au lif lo w er. “ R ita S keete r's b een f e rre tin g a ro und a ll w eek , l o okin g f o r
more M in is tr y m ess-u ps to re p ort. A nd n ow sh e's fo und o ut ab out p oor o ld
Berth a g oin g m is sin g, s o th at'l l b e th e h ead lin e in th e P ro phet to m orro w . I to ld
Bag m an h e s h ould h av e s e n t s o m eo ne t o l o ok f o r h er a g es a g o.”
“M r. C ro uch h as b een s a y in g i t f o r w eek s a n d w eek s,” s a id P erc y s w if tly .
“C ro uch is very lu ck y R ita hasn 't fo und out ab out W in ky,” sa id M r.
Weasle y ir rita b ly . “ T here 'd b e a w eek 's w orth o f h ead lin es in h is h ouse -e lf b ein g
cau ght h old in g t h e w an d t h at c o nju re d t h e D ark M ark .”
“I th ought w e w ere all ag re ed th at th at elf , w hile ir re sp onsib le , d id n ot
co nju re t h e M ark ?” s a id P erc y h otly .
“If y ou ask m e, M r. C ro uch is v ery lu ck y n o o ne at th e D aily P ro phet
know s h ow m ean h e i s t o e lv es!” s a id H erm io ne a n grily .
“N ow lo ok h ere , H erm io ne!” s a id P erc y. “ A h ig h-ra n kin g M in is tr y o ff ic ia l
lik e M r. C ro uch d ese rv es u nsw erv in g o bed ie n ce f ro m h is s e rv an ts — ”
“H is sla v e, you m ean !” sa id H erm io ne, her voic e ris in g passio nate ly ,
“b ecau se h e d id n't p ay W in ky, d id h e?”
“I t h in k y ou'd a ll b ette r g o u psta ir s a n d c h eck t h at y ou'v e p ack ed p ro perly !”

sa id M rs . W easle y, b re ak in g u p t h e a rg um en t. “ C om e o n n ow , a ll o f y ou… ”
Harry re p ack ed his bro om stic k se rv ic in g kit, put his F ir e b olt over his
sh ould er, a n d w en t b ack u psta ir s w ith R on. T he r a in s o unded e v en lo uder a t th e
to p o f th e h ouse , a cco m pan ie d b y lo ud w his tlin gs a n d m oan s f ro m th e w in d, n ot
to m en tio n sp ora d ic h ow ls fro m th e g houl w ho liv ed in th e a ttic . P ig w id geo n
beg an tw itte rin g a n d z o om in g a ro und h is c ag e w hen th ey e n te re d . T he s ig ht o f
th e h alf -p ack ed t r u nks s e em ed t o h av e s e n t h im i n to a f re n zy o f e x cite m en t.
“B ung h im s o m e O wl T re ats ,” s a id R on, th ro w in g a p ack et a cro ss to H arry .
“It m ig ht s h ut h im u p.”
Harry p oked a f e w O wl T re ats th ro ugh th e b ars o f P ig w id geo n's c ag e, th en
tu rn ed t o h is t r u nk. H ed w ig 's c ag e s to od n ex t t o i t, s till e m pty .
“It's b een o ver a w eek ,” H arry sa id , lo okin g a t H ed w ig 's d ese rte d p erc h .
“R on, y ou d on't r e ck on S ir iu s h as b een c au ght, d o y ou?”
“N ah , it w ould 'v e b een in th e D aily P ro phet,” sa id R on. “T he M in is tr y
would w an t t o s h ow t h ey 'd c au ght s o m eo ne, w ould n't t h ey ?”
“Y eah , I s u ppose … ”
“L ook, h ere 's th e stu ff M um g ot fo r y ou in D ia g on A lle y. A nd sh e's g ot
so m e g old o ut o f y our v au lt f o r y ou… a n d s h e's w ash ed a ll y our s o ck s.”
He h eav ed a p ile o f p arc els o nto H arry 's c am p b ed a n d d ro pped th e m oney
bag a n d a lo ad o f s o ck s n ex t to it. H arry s ta rte d u nw ra p pin g th e s h oppin g. A part
fro m T he S ta n dard B ook o f S pells , G ra d e 4 , b y M ir a n da G osh aw k, h e h ad a
han dfu l o f n ew q uills , a d ozen ro lls o f p arc h m en t, a n d re fills fo r h is p otio n-
mak in g kit— he had been ru nnin g lo w on sp in e of lio nfis h an d esse n ce of
bella d onna. H e w as ju st p ilin g u nderw ear in to h is c au ld ro n w hen R on m ad e a
lo ud n ois e o f d is g ust b eh in d h im .
“W hat i s t h at s u ppose d t o b e?”
He w as h old in g u p so m eth in g th at lo oked to H arry lik e a lo ng, m aro on
velv et d re ss. It h ad a m old y-lo okin g la ce frill a t th e c o lla r a n d m atc h in g la ce
cu ff s .
There w as a k nock o n th e d oo r, a n d M rs . W easle y e n te re d , c arry in g a n
arm fu l o f f re sh ly l a u ndere d H ogw arts r o bes.
“H ere y ou a re ,” s h e s a id , s o rtin g t h em i n to t w o p ile s. “ N ow , m in d y ou p ack
th em p ro perly s o t h ey d on't c re ase .”
“M um , y ou'v e g iv en m e G in ny's n ew d re ss,” s a id R on, h an din g i t o ut t o h er.
“O f c o urs e I h av en 't ,” s a id M rs . W easle y. “ T hat's f o r y ou. D re ss r o bes.”
“W hat? ” s a id R on, l o okin g h orro r- s tr u ck .
“D re ss ro bes!” re p eate d M rs . W easle y. “It sa y s o n y our sc h ool lis t th at
you'r e s u ppose d t o h av e d re ss r o bes t h is y ear… r o bes f o r f o rm al o ccasio ns.”
“Y ou'v e g ot to b e k id din g,” s a id R on in d is b elie f. “ I'm n ot w earin g th at, n o

way.”
“E very one w ears th em , R on!” s a id M rs . W easle y c ro ssly . “ T hey 'r e a ll lik e
th at! Y our f a th er's g ot s o m e f o r s m art p artie s!”
“I'l l g o s ta rk ers b efo re I p ut t h at o n,” s a id R on s tu bborn ly .
“D on't b e so silly ,” sa id M rs . W easle y. “ Y ou'v e g ot to h av e d re ss ro bes,
th ey 'r e o n y our l is t! I g ot s o m e f o r H arry t o o… s h ow h im , H arry … ”
In s o m e t r e p id atio n, H arry o pen ed t h e l a st p arc el o n h is c am p b ed . I t w asn 't
as b ad a s h e h ad e x pecte d , h ow ev er; h is d re ss r o bes d id n't h av e a n y l a ce o n t h em
at a ll— in fa ct, th ey w ere m ore o r le ss th e s a m e a s h is s c h ool o nes, e x cep t th at
th ey w ere b ottle g re en i n ste ad o f b la ck .
“I th ought th ey 'd b rin g o ut th e c o lo r o f y our e y es, d ear,” s a id M rs . W easle y
fo ndly .
“W ell, th ey 'r e o kay !” sa id R on an grily , lo okin g at H arry 's ro bes. “W hy
co uld n't I h av e s o m e l ik e t h at? ”
“B ecau se … w ell, I h ad to g et y ours s e co ndhan d, a n d th ere w asn 't a lo t o f
ch oic e!” s a id M rs . W easle y, f lu sh in g.
Harry lo oked aw ay. H e w ould w illin gly h av e sp lit all th e m oney in h is
Grin gotts v au lt w ith t h e W easle y s, b ut h e k new t h ey w ould n ev er t a k e i t.
“I'm n ev er w earin g t h em ,” R on w as s a y in g s tu bborn ly . “ N ev er.”
“F in e,” s n ap ped M rs . W easle y. “ G o n ak ed . A nd, H arry , m ak e s u re y ou g et a
pic tu re o f h im . G oodness k now s I c o uld d o w ith a l a u gh.”
She le ft th e ro om , sla m min g th e door beh in d her. T here w as a fu nny
sp lu tte rin g n ois e fro m b eh in d th em . P ig w id geo n w as c h okin g o n a n o verla rg e
Owl T re at.
“W hy is e v ery th in g I o w n r u bbis h ?” s a id R on f u rio usly , s tr id in g a cro ss th e
ro om t o u nstic k P ig w id geo n's b eak .

C H APT ER E LEV EN
A BO ARD T H E H OGW ART E X PR ESS
There w as a defin ite en d-o f-th e-h olid ay s glo om in th e air w hen H arry
a w oke n ex t m orn in g. H eav y ra in w as s till s p la tte rin g a g ain st th e w in dow a s h e
g ot d re sse d in je an s a n d a s w eats h ir t; th ey w ould c h an ge in to th eir s c h ool r o bes
o n t h e H ogw arts E xpre ss.
He, R on, F re d , a n d G eo rg e h ad ju st r e ach ed th e f ir s t- flo or la n din g o n th eir
w ay d ow n to b re ak fa st, w hen M rs . W easle y a p peare d a t th e fo ot o f th e s ta ir s ,
l o okin g h ara sse d .
“A rth ur!” sh e c alle d u p th e sta ir c ase . “ A rth ur! U rg en t m essa g e fro m th e
M in is tr y !”
Harry f la tte n ed h im se lf a g ain st t h e w all a s M r. W easle y c am e c la tte rin g p ast
w ith h is ro bes o n b ack -to -fro nt a n d h urtle d o ut o f sig ht. W hen H arry a n d th e
o th ers e n te re d th e k itc h en , th ey s a w M rs . W easle y ru m mag in g a n xio usly in th e
d ra w ers — ”I'v e g ot a q uill h ere so m ew here !” — an d M r. W easle y b en din g o ver
t h e f ir e , t a lk in g t o —
Harry s h ut h is e y es h ard a n d o pen ed t h em a g ain t o m ak e s u re t h at t h ey w ere
w ork in g p ro perly .
Am os D ig gory 's h ead w as s ittin g in th e m id dle o f th e fla m es lik e a la rg e,
b eard ed eg g. It w as ta lk in g v ery fa st, co m ple te ly u npertu rb ed b y th e sp ark s
f ly in g a ro und i t a n d t h e f la m es l ic k in g i ts e ars .
“… M uggle n eig hbors h eard b an gs a n d s h outin g, s o th ey w en t a n d c alle d
t h ose w hat- d 'y ou-c all- 'e m s— ple ase -m en . A rth ur, y ou'v e g ot t o g et o ver t h ere — ”
“H ere !” sa id M rs . W easle y b re ath le ssly , p ush in g a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t, a
b ottle o f i n k, a n d a c ru m ple d q uill i n to M r. W easle y 's h an ds.
“it's a r e al s tr o ke o f lu ck I h eard a b out it,” s a id M r. D ig gory 's h ead . “ I h ad
t o c o m e in to th e o ff ic e e arly to s e n d a c o uple o f o w ls , a n d I f o und th e I m pro per
U se o f M ag ic l o t a ll s e ttin g o ff — if R ita S keete r g ets h old o f t h is o ne, A rth ur— ”
“W hat d oes M ad -E ye s a y h ap pen ed ?” a sk ed M r. W easle y, u nsc re w in g th e
i n k b ottle , l o ad in g u p h is q uill, a n d p re p arin g t o t a k e n ote s.
Mr. D ig gory 's h ead ro lle d its e y es. “ S ay s h e h eard a n in tr u der in h is y ard .
S ay s h e w as c re ep in g t o w ard t h e h ouse , b ut w as a m bush ed b y h is d ustb in s.”
“W hat d id t h e d ustb in s d o?” a sk ed M r. W easle y, s c rib blin g f ra n tic ally .
“M ad e o ne h ell o f a n ois e a n d fir e d ru bbis h e v ery w here , a s fa r a s I c an
t e ll,” s a id M r. D ig gory . “ A ppare n tly o ne o f t h em w as s till r o ck etin g a ro und w hen
t h e p le ase -m en t u rn ed u p— ”

Mr. W easle y g ro an ed .
“A nd w hat a b out t h e i n tr u der? ”
“A rth ur, y ou k now M ad -E ye,” sa id M r. D ig gory 's h ead , ro llin g its ey es
ag ain . “ S om eo ne c re ep in g in to h is y ard in th e d ead o f n ig ht? M ore lik ely th ere 's
a very sh ell- s h ock ed cat w an derin g aro und so m ew here , co vere d in pota to
peelin gs. B ut if th e I m pro per U se o f M ag ic lo t g et th eir h an ds o n M ad -E ye, h e's
had it— th in k of his re co rd — we'v e got to get him off on a m in or ch arg e,
so m eth in g i n y our d ep artm en t— what a re e x plo din g d ustb in s w orth ?”
“M ig ht b e a c au tio n,” sa id M r. W easle y, still w ritin g v ery fa st, h is b ro w
fu rro w ed . “ M ad -E ye d id n't u se h is w an d? H e d id n't a ctu ally a tta ck a n yone?”
“I'l l b et h e le ap t o ut o f b ed a n d s ta rte d jin xin g e v ery th in g h e c o uld re ach
th ro ugh th e w in dow ,” s a id M r. D ig gory , “ b ut th ey 'l l h av e a jo b p ro vin g it, th ere
are n 't a n y c asu altie s.”
“A ll r ig ht, I 'm o ff ,” M r. W easle y s a id , a n d h e s tu ff e d t h e p arc h m en t w ith h is
note s o n i t i n to h is p ock et a n d d ash ed o ut o f t h e k itc h en a g ain .
Mr. D ig gory 's h ead l o oked a ro und a t M rs . W easle y.
“S orry a b out th is , M olly ,” it s a id , m ore c alm ly , “ b oth erin g y ou s o e arly a n d
ev ery th in g… b ut A rth ur's t h e o nly o ne w ho c an g et M ad -E ye o ff , a n d M ad -E ye's
su ppose d t o b e s ta rtin g h is n ew j o b t o day. W hy h e h ad t o c h oose l a st n ig ht..”
“N ev er m in d, A m os,” sa id M rs . W easle y. “ S ure y ou w on't h av e a b it o f
to ast o r a n yth in g b efo re y ou g o?”
“O h g o o n, t h en ,” s a id M r. D ig gory .
Mrs . W easle y to ok a p ie ce o f b utte re d to ast fro m a sta ck o n th e k itc h en
ta b le , p ut i t i n to t h e f ir e t o ngs, a n d t r a n sfe rre d i t i n to M r. D ig gory 's m outh .
“F an ks,” h e s a id i n a m uff le d v oic e, a n d t h en , w ith a s m all p op, v an is h ed .
Harry c o uld h ear M r. W easle y c allin g h urrie d g ood-b yes to B ill, C harlie ,
Perc y, a n d th e g ir ls . W ith in fiv e m in ute s, h e w as b ack in th e k itc h en , h is ro bes
on t h e r ig ht w ay n ow , d ra g gin g a c o m b t h ro ugh h is h air.
“I'd b ette r h urry — you h av e a g ood te rm , b oys, s a id M r. W easle y to H arry ,
Ron, an d th e tw in s, fa ste n in g a clo ak over his sh ould ers an d pre p arin g to
Dis a p para te . “M olly , are y ou g oin g to b e all rig ht ta k in g th e k id s to K in g's
Cro ss? ”
“O f c o urs e I w ill,” s h e s a id . “ Y ou j u st l o ok a fte r M ad -E ye, w e'l l b e f in e.”
As M r. W easle y v an is h ed , B ill a n d C harlie e n te re d t h e k itc h en .
“D id s o m eo ne s a y M ad -E ye?” B ill a sk ed . “ W hat's h e b een u p t o n ow .”
“H e sa y s so m eo ne tr ie d to bre ak in to his house la st nig ht,” sa id M rs .
Weasle y.
“M ad -E ye M oody?” s a id G eo rg e th oughtf u lly , s p re ad in g m arm ala d e o n h is
to ast. “ Is n 't h e t h at n utte r— ”

“Y our fa th er th in ks v ery h ig hly o f M ad -E ye M oody,” sa id M rs . W easle y
ste rn ly .
“Y eah , w ell, D ad co lle cts p lu gs, d oesn 't h e?” sa id F re d q uie tly as M rs .
Weasle y l e ft t h e r o om . “ B ir d s o f a f e ath er… ”
“M oody w as a g re at w iz ard i n h is t im e,” s a id B ill.
“H e's a n o ld f rie n d o f D um ble d ore 's , i s n 't h e?” s a id C harlie .
“D um ble d ore 's n ot w hat y ou'd c all n orm al, th ough, is h e?” sa id F re d . “ I
mean , I k now h e's a g en iu s a n d e v ery th in g… ”
“W ho i s M ad -E ye?” a sk ed H arry .
“H e's r e tir e d , u se d to w ork a t th e M in is tr y ,” s a id C harlie . “ I m et h im o nce
when D ad to ok m e in to w ork w ith h im . H e w as a n A uro r— one o f th e b est… a
Dark w iz ard c atc h er,” h e a d ded , se ein g H arry 's b la n k lo ok “ H alf th e c ells in
Azk ab an a re f u ll b ecau se o f h im . H e m ad e h im se lf lo ad s o f e n em ie s, th ough…
th e fa m ilie s o f p eo ple h e c au ght, m ain ly … a n d I h eard h e's b een g ettin g re ally
para n oid in his old ag e. D oesn 't tr u st an yone an ym ore . S ees D ark w iz ard s
ev ery w here .”
Bill an d C harlie d ecid ed to co m e an d se e ev ery one o ff at K in g's C ro ss
sta tio n, b ut P erc y, a p olo giz in g m ost p ro fu se ly , s a id t h at h e r e ally n eed ed t o g et t o
work .
“I j u st c an 't j u stif y t a k in g m ore t im e o ff a t t h e m om en t,” h e t o ld t h em . “ M r.
Cro uch i s r e ally s ta rtin g t o r e ly o n m e.”
“Y eah , y ou k now w hat, P erc y ?” s a id G eo rg e s e rio usly . “ I r e ck on h e'l l k now
your n am e s o on.”
Mrs . W easle y h ad b ra v ed th e te le p hone in th e v illa g e p ost o ff ic e to o rd er
th re e o rd in ary M uggle t a x is t o t a k e t h em i n to L ondon.
“A rth ur tr ie d to b orro w M in is tr y c ars fo r u s,” M rs . W easle y w his p ere d to
Harry a s th ey s to od in th e ra in -w ash ed y ard , w atc h in g th e ta x i d riv ers h eav in g
six h eav y H ogw arts tr u nks in to th eir c ars . “ B ut th ere w ere n 't a n y to s p are … O h
dear, t h ey d on't l o ok h ap py, d o t h ey ?”
Harry did n't lik e to te ll M rs . W easle y th at M uggle ta x i driv ers ra re ly
tr a n sp orte d o vere x cite d o w ls , a n d P ig w id geo n w as m ak in g a n e ars p littin g r a ck et.
Nor did it help th at a num ber of F ilib uste r's F ab ulo us N o-H eat, W et- S ta rt
Fir e w ork s w en t o ff u nex pecte d ly w hen F re d 's tr u nk sp ra n g o pen , c au sin g th e
driv er c arry in g it to y ell w ith f rig ht a n d p ain a s C ro oksh an ks c la w ed h is w ay u p
th e m an 's l e g .
The j o urn ey w as u nco m fo rta b le , o w in g t o t h e f a ct t h at t h ey w ere j a m med i n
th e b ack o f t h e t a x is w ith t h eir t r u nks. C ro oksh an ks t o ok q uite a w hile t o r e co ver
fro m th e fir e w ork s, an d b y th e tim e th ey en te re d L ondon, H arry , R on, an d
Herm io ne w ere a ll se v ere ly sc ra tc h ed . T hey w ere v ery re lie v ed to g et o ut a t

Kin g's C ro ss, e v en th ough th e r a in w as c o m in g d ow n h ard er th an e v er, a n d th ey
got s o ak ed c arry in g t h eir t r u nks a cro ss t h e b usy r o ad a n d i n to t h e s ta tio n.
Harry w as u se d to g ettin g o nto p la tf o rm n in e a n d th re e-q uarte rs b y n ow . I t
was a sim ple m atte r o f w alk in g str a ig ht th ro ugh th e ap pare n tly so lid b arrie r
div id in g p la tf o rm s n in e an d te n . T he o nly tr ic k y p art w as d oin g th is in an
unobtr u siv e w ay, so as to av oid attr a ctin g M uggle atte n tio n. T hey d id it in
gro ups t o day ; H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne ( th e m ost c o nsp ic u ous, s in ce t h ey w ere
acco m pan ie d b y P ig w id geo n a n d C ro oksh an ks) w en t fir s t; th ey le an ed c asu ally
ag ain st t h e b arrie r, c h attin g u nco ncern ed ly , a n d s lid s id ew ay s t h ro ugh i t… a n d a s
th ey d id s o , p la tf o rm n in e a n d t h re e-q uarte rs m ate ria liz ed i n f ro nt o f t h em .
The H ogw arts E xpre ss, a g le am in g s c arle t s te am e n gin e, w as a lr e ad y th ere ,
clo uds o f s te am b illo w in g fro m it, th ro ugh w hic h th e m an y H ogw arts s tu den ts
an d p are n ts o n th e p la tf o rm ap peare d lik e d ark g hosts . P ig w id geo n b ecam e
nois ie r th an e v er in re sp onse to th e h ootin g o f m an y o w ls th ro ugh th e m is t.
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne se t o ff to fin d se ats , a n d w ere so on sto w in g th eir
lu ggag e i n a c o m partm en t h alf w ay a lo ng t h e t r a in . T hey t h en h opped b ack d ow n
onto t h e p la tf o rm t o s a y g ood-b ye t o M rs . W easle y, B ill, a n d C harlie .
“I m ig ht b e s e ein g y ou a ll s o oner t h an y ou t h in k,” s a id C harlie , g rin nin g, a s
he h ugged G in ny g ood-b ye.
“W hy?” s a id F re d k een ly .
“Y ou'l l se e,” sa id C harlie . “Ju st don't te ll Perc y I m en tio ned it… it's
'c la ssif ie d in fo rm atio n, u ntil s u ch tim e a s th e M in is tr y s e es f it to r e le ase it,' a fte r
all.”
“Y eah , I s o rt o f w is h I w ere b ack a t H ogw arts t h is y ear,” s a id B ill, h an ds i n
his p ock ets , l o okin g a lm ost w is tf u lly a t t h e t r a in .
“W hy?” s a id G eo rg e i m patie n tly .
“Y ou'r e g oin g to h av e a n in te re stin g y ear,” s a id B ill, h is e y es tw in klin g. “ I
mig ht e v en g et t im e o ff t o c o m e a n d w atc h a b it o f i t.”
“A b it o f w hat? ” s a id R on.
But at th at m om en t, th e w his tle b le w , an d M rs . W easle y ch iv vie d th em
to w ard t h e t r a in d oors .
“T han ks fo r hav in g us to sta y, M rs . W easle y,” sa id H erm io ne as th ey
clim bed o n b oard , c lo se d t h e d oor, a n d l e an ed o ut o f t h e w in dow t o t a lk t o h er.
“Y eah , t h an ks f o r e v ery th in g, M rs . W easle y,” s a id H arry .
“O h it w as m y p le asu re , d ears ,” sa id M rs . W easle y. “I'd in vite y ou fo r
Chris tm as, b ut… w ell, I e x pect y ou'r e a ll g oin g to w an t to sta y a t H ogw arts ,
what w ith … o ne t h in g a n d a n oth er.”
“M um !” s a id R on i r rita b ly . “ W hat d 'y ou t h re e k now t h at w e d on't ? ”
“Y ou'l l fin d o ut th is e v en in g, I e x pect,” sa id M rs . W easle y, sm ilin g. “ It's

goin g t o b e v ery e x citin g— min d y ou, I 'm v ery g la d t h ey 'v e c h an ged t h e r u le s— ”
“W hat r u le s? ” s a id H arry , R on, F re d , a n d G eo rg e t o geth er.
“I'm s u re P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore w ill te ll y ou… N ow , b eh av e, w on't y ou?
Won't y ou, F re d ? A nd y ou, G eo rg e?”
The p is to ns h is se d l o udly a n d t h e t r a in b eg an t o m ove.
“T ell u s w hat's h ap pen in g a t H ogw arts !” F re d b ello w ed o ut o f th e w in dow
as M rs . W easle y, B ill, a n d C harlie s p ed a w ay fro m th em . “ W hat ru le s a re th ey
ch an gin g?”
But M rs . W easle y o nly s m ile d a n d w av ed . B efo re th e tr a in h ad r o unded th e
co rn er, s h e, B ill, a n d C harlie h ad D is a p para te d .
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne w en t b ack to th eir c o m partm en t. T he th ic k r a in
sp la tte rin g th e w in dow s m ad e it v ery d if f ic u lt to s e e o ut o f th em . R on u ndid h is
tr u nk, p ulle d o ut h is m aro on d re ss r o bes, a n d f lu ng t h em o ver P ig w id geo n's c ag e
to m uff le h is h ootin g.
“B ag m an w an te d to te ll us w hat's hap pen in g at H ogw arts ,” he sa id
gru m pily , s ittin g d ow n n ex t to H arry . “ A t th e W orld C up, re m em ber? B ut m y
ow n m oth er w on't s a y. W onder w hat— ”
“S hh!” H erm io ne w his p ere d s u dden ly , p re ssin g h er fin ger to h er lip s a n d
poin tin g to w ard th e c o m partm en t n ex t to th eir s . H arry a n d R on lis te n ed , a n d
heard a f a m ilia r d ra w lin g v oic e d rif tin g i n t h ro ugh t h e o pen d oor.
“… Fath er actu ally co nsid ere d se n din g m e to D urm str a n g ra th er th an
Hogw arts , y ou k now . H e k now s th e h ead m aste r, y ou s e e. W ell, y ou k now h is
opin io n o f D um ble d ore — th e m an 's su ch a M udblo od-lo ver— an d D urm str a n g
doesn 't a d m it th at s o rt o f r if f ra ff . B ut M oth er d id n't lik e th e id ea o f m e g oin g to
sc h ool s o fa r a w ay. F ath er s a y s D urm str a n g ta k es a fa r m ore s e n sib le lin e th an
Hogw arts a b out t h e D ark A rts . D urm str a n g s tu den ts a ctu ally l e arn t h em , n ot j u st
th e d efe n se r u bbis h w e d o… ”
Herm io ne g ot u p, t ip to ed t o t h e c o m partm en t d oor, a n d s lid i t s h ut, b lo ck in g
out M alf o y's v oic e.
“S o he th in ks D urm str a n g w ould hav e su ite d him , does he?” sh e sa id
an grily . “ I w is h h e h ad g one, t h en w e w ould n't h av e t o p ut u p w ith h im .”
“D urm str a n g's a n oth er w iz ard in g s c h ool? ” s a id H arry .
“Y es,” s a id H erm io ne s n if f ily , “ an d it's g ot a h orrib le r e p uta tio n. A cco rd in g
to A n A ppra is a l o fM ag ic al E ducatio n in E uro pe, it p uts a lo t o f e m phasis o n th e
Dark A rts .”
“I t h in k I 'v e h eard o f i t,” s a id R on v ag uely . “ W here i s i t? W hat c o untr y ?”
“W ell, n obody k now s, d o t h ey ?” s a id H erm io ne, r a is in g h er e y eb ro w s.
“E r— why n ot? ” s a id H arry .
“T here 's tr a d itio nally b een a lo t o f riv alr y b etw een a ll th e m ag ic s c h ools .

Durm str a n g a n d B eau xbato ns lik e to c o nceal th eir w here ab outs s o n obody c an
ste al t h eir s e cre ts ,” s a id H erm io ne m atte r- o f-fa ctly .
“C om e o ff i t,” s a id R on, s ta rtin g t o l a u gh. “ D urm str a n g's g ot t o b e a b out t h e
sa m e s iz e a s H ogw arts — how a re y ou g oin g t o h id e a g re at b ig c astle ?”
“B ut H ogw arts is h id den ,” sa id H erm io ne, in su rp ris e . “ E very one k now s
th at… w ell, e v ery one w ho's r e ad H ogw arts , A H is to ry , a n yw ay.”
“Ju st you, th en ,” sa id R on. “S o go on— how d'y ou hid e a pla ce lik e
Hogw arts ? ”
“It's b ew itc h ed ,” s a id H erm io ne. “ If a M uggle lo oks a t it, a ll th ey s e e is a
mold erin g o ld ru in w ith a sig n o ver th e e n tr a n ce sa y in g D ANGER , D O N OT
EN TER , U NSA FE .”
“S o D urm str a n g'l l j u st l o ok l ik e a r u in t o a n o uts id er t o o?”
“M ay be,” sa id H erm io ne, sh ru ggin g, “ o r it m ig ht h av e M uggle -re p ellin g
ch arm s o n it, lik e th e W orld C up sta d iu m . A nd to k eep fo re ig n w iz ard s fro m
fin din g i t, t h ey 'l l h av e m ad e i t U nplo tta b le — ”
“C om e a g ain ?”
“W ell, y ou c an e n ch an t a b uild in g s o it's im possib le to p lo t o n a m ap , c an 't
you?”
“E r… i f y ou s a y s o ,” s a id H arry .
“B ut I th in k D urm str a n g m ust be so m ew here in th e fa r north ,” sa id
Herm io ne th oughtf u lly . “ S om ew here v ery c o ld , b ecau se th ey 'v e g ot f u r c ap es a s
part o f t h eir u nif o rm s.”
“A h, th in k o f th e p ossib ilitie s,” sa id R on d re am ily . “ It w ould 'v e b een so
easy to p ush M alf o y o ff a g la cie r a n d m ak e it lo ok lik e a n a ccid en t… S ham e h is
moth er l ik es h im … ”
The r a in b ecam e h eav ie r a n d h eav ie r a s th e tr a in m oved f a rth er n orth . T he
sk y w as s o d ark a n d t h e w in dow s s o s te am y t h at t h e l a n te rn s w ere l it b y m id day.
The lu nch tr o lle y c am e ra ttlin g a lo ng th e c o rrid or, a n d H arry b ought a la rg e
sta ck o f C au ld ro n C ak es f o r t h em t o s h are .
Sev era l o f th eir frie n ds lo oked in o n th em as th e afte rn oon p ro gre sse d ,
in clu din g S eam us F in nig an , D ean T hom as, a n d N ev ille L ongbotto m , a ro und-
fa ced , e x tr e m ely f o rg etf u l b oy w ho h ad b een b ro ught u p b y h is f o rm id ab le w itc h
of a g ra n dm oth er. S eam us w as still w earin g h is Ire la n d ro se tte . S om e o f its
mag ic s e em ed to b e w earin g o ff n ow ; it w as s till s q ueak in g “ T ro y— Mulle t—
Mora n !” b ut i n a v ery f e eb le a n d e x hau ste d s o rt o f w ay. A fte r h alf a n h our o r s o ,
Herm io ne, g ro w in g tir e d o f th e e n dle ss Q uid ditc h ta lk , b urie d h ers e lf o nce m ore
in The Sta n dard B ook of Spells , G ra d e 4, an d sta rte d tr y in g to le arn a
Sum monin g C harm .
Nev ille l is te n ed j e alo usly t o t h e o th ers ' c o nvers a tio n a s t h ey r e liv ed t h e C up

matc h .
“G ra n did n't w an t to go,” he sa id m is e ra b ly . “W ould n't buy tic k ets . It
so unded a m azin g t h ough.”
“It w as,” s a id R on. “ L ook a t t h is , N ev ille …
He ru m mag ed in his tr u nk up in th e lu ggag e ra ck an d pulle d out th e
min ia tu re f ig ure o f V ik to r K ru m .
“O h w ow ,” sa id N ev ille en vio usly as R on tip ped K ru m o nto h is p udgy
han d.
“W e s a w h im r ig ht u p c lo se , a s w ell,” s a id R on. “ W e w ere in th e T op B ox
—”
“F or t h e f ir s t a n d l a st t im e i n y our l if e , W easle y.”
Dra co M alf o y h ad a p peare d in th e d oorw ay. B eh in d h im s to od C ra b be a n d
Goyle , h is e n orm ous, t h uggis h c ro nie s, b oth o f w hom a p peare d t o h av e g ro w n a t
le ast a fo ot d urin g th e s u m mer. E vid en tly th ey h ad o verh eard th e c o nvers a tio n
th ro ugh t h e c o m partm en t d oor, w hic h D ean a n d S eam us h ad l e ft a ja r.
“D on't r e m em ber a sk in g y ou t o j o in u s, M alf o y,” s a id H arry c o olly .
“W easle y … w hat is th at? ” s a id M alf o y, p oin tin g a t P ig w id geo n's c ag e. A
sle ev e o f R on's d re ss r o bes w as d an glin g f ro m i t, s w ay in g w ith t h e m otio n o f t h e
tr a in , t h e m old y l a ce c u ff v ery o bvio us.
Ron m ad e t o s tu ff t h e r o bes o ut o f s ig ht, b ut M alf o y w as t o o q uic k f o r h im ;
he s e iz ed t h e s le ev e a n d p ulle d .
“L ook a t t h is !” s a id M alf o y i n e csta sy , h old in g u p R on's r o bes a n d s h ow in g
Cra b be a n d G oyle , “ W easle y, y ou w ere n 't t h in kin g o f w earin g t h ese , w ere y ou? I
mean — th ey w ere v ery f a sh io nab le i n a b out e ig hte en n in ety …
“E at d ung, M alf o y!” sa id R on, th e sa m e co lo r as th e d re ss ro bes as h e
sn atc h ed th em b ack o ut o f M alf o y's g rip . M alf o y h ow le d w ith d eris iv e la u ghte r;
Cra b be a n d G oyle g uff a w ed s tu pid ly .
“S o… g oin g to e n te r, W easle y ? G oin g to tr y a n d b rin g a b it o f g lo ry to th e
fa m ily n am e? T here 's m oney in volv ed a s w ell, y ou k now … y ou'd b e a b le to
aff o rd s o m e d ecen t r o bes i f y ou w on… ”
“W hat a re y ou t a lk in g a b out? ” s n ap ped R on.
'A re y ou g oin g t o e n te r? ' M alf o y r e p eate d . “ I s u ppose y ou w ill, P otte r? Y ou
nev er m is s a c h an ce t o s h ow o ff , d o y ou?”
“E ith er e x pla in w hat y ou'r e o n a b out o r g o a w ay, M alf o y,” s a id H erm io ne
te stily , o ver t h e t o p o f T he S ta n dard B ook o f S pells , G ra d e 4 .
A g le efu l s m ile s p re ad a cro ss M alf o y's p ale f a ce
“D on't te ll m e y ou d on't k now ?” h e s a id d elig hte d ly . “ Y ou'v e g ot a fa th er
an d b ro th er a t th e M in is tr y a n d y ou d on't e v en k now ? M y G od, m y fa th er to ld
me a b out i t a g es a g o… h eard i t f ro m C orn eliu s F udge. B ut th en , F ath er's a lw ay s

asso cia te d w ith th e to p p eo ple a t th e M in is tr y … M ay be y our f a th er's to o ju nio r
to k now a b out i t , W easle y … y es… t h ey p ro bab ly d on't t a lk a b out i m porta n t s tu ff
in f ro nt o f h im … ”
Lau ghin g o nce m ore , M alf o y b eck oned to C ra b be a n d G oyle , a n d th e th re e
of t h em d is a p peare d .
Ron g ot to h is fe et a n d sla m m ed th e slid in g c o m partm en t d oor so h ard
beh in d t h em t h at t h e g la ss s h atte re d .
“R on!” s a id H erm io ne r e p ro ach fu lly , a n d s h e p ulle d o ut h er w an d, m utte re d
“R ep aro !” a n d th e g la ss s h ard s fle w b ack in to a s in gle p an e a n d b ack in to th e
door.
“W ell… m ak in g it lo ok lik e h e k now s e v ery th in g a n d w e d on't … ” R on
sn arle d . “ F ath er's a lw ay s a sso cia te d w ith th e to p p eo pie a t th e M in is tr y . '… D ad
co uld 'v e g ot a p ro m otio n a n y t im e… h e j u st l ik es i t w here h e i s … ”
“O f c o urs e h e d oes,” s a id H erm io ne q uie tly . “ D on't le t M alf o y g et to y ou,
Ron— ”
“H im ! G et to m e!? A s if !” sa id R on, p ic k in g u p o ne o f th e re m ain in g
Cau ld ro n C ak es a n d s q uash in g i t i n to a p ulp .
Ron's b ad m ood c o ntin ued f o r t h e r e st o f t h e j o urn ey. H e d id n't t a lk m uch a s
th ey c h an ged i n to t h eir s c h ool r o bes, a n d w as s till g lo w erin g w hen t h e H ogw arts
Expre ss slo w ed dow n at la st an d fin ally sto pped in th e pitc h -d ark ness of
Hogsm ead e s ta tio n.
As th e tr a in doors open ed , th ere w as a ru m ble of th under overh ead .
Herm io ne b undle d u p C ro oksh an ks in h er c lo ak a n d R on le ft h is d re ss ro bes
over P ig w id geo n a s th ey le ft th e tr a in , h ead s b en t a n d e y es n arro w ed a g ain st th e
dow npour. T he ra in w as n ow co m in g d ow n so th ic k an d fa st th at it w as as
th ough buck ets of ic e-c o ld w ate r w ere bein g em ptie d re p eate d ly over th eir
head s.
“H i, H ag rid !” H arry y elle d , s e ein g a g ig an tic s ilh ouette a t t h e f a r e n d o f t h e
pla tf o rm .
“A ll r ig h', H arry ?” H ag rid b ello w ed b ack , w av in g. “ S ee y eh a t th e f e ast if
we d on' d ro w n!”
Fir s t y ears tr a d itio nally r e ach ed H ogw arts C astle b y s a ilin g a cro ss th e la k e
with H ag rid .
“O ooh, I w ould n't fa n cy c ro ssin g th e la k e in th is w eath er,” s a id H erm io ne
fe rv en tly , s h iv erin g a s th ey in ch ed s lo w ly a lo ng th e d ark p la tf o rm w ith th e re st
of th e c ro w d. A h undre d h ors e le ss c arria g es s to od w aitin g fo r th em o uts id e th e
sta tio n. H arry , R on, H erm io ne, a n d N ev ille c lim bed g ra te fu lly in to o ne o f th em ,
th e d oor s h ut w ith a s n ap , a n d a f e w m om en ts la te r, w ith a g re at lu rc h , th e lo ng
pro cessio n o f c arria g es w as r u m blin g a n d s p la sh in g its w ay u p th e tr a ck to w ard

Hogw arts C astle .

C H APT ER T W ELV E
T H E T R IW IZ A RD T O URNAM EN T
Thro ugh th e gate s, fla n ked w ith sta tu es of w in ged boars , an d up th e
s w eep in g d riv e th e c arria g es tr u ndle d , sw ay in g d an gero usly in w hat w as fa st
b eco m in g a g ale . L ean in g a g ain st t h e w in dow , H arry c o uld s e e H ogw arts c o m in g
n eare r, its m an y lig hte d w in dow s blu rre d an d sh im merin g beh in d th e th ic k
c u rta in o f r a in . L ig htn in g f la sh ed a cro ss th e s k y a s th eir c arria g e c am e to a h alt
b efo re t h e g re at o ak f ro nt d oors , w hic h s to od a t t h e t o p o f a f lig ht o f s to ne s te p s.
P eo ple w ho h ad o ccu pie d th e c arria g es in fro nt w ere a lr e ad y h urry in g u p th e
s to ne ste p s in to th e c astle . H arry , R on, H erm io ne, a n d N ev ille ju m ped d ow n
f ro m t h eir c arria g e a n d d ash ed u p t h e s te p s t o o, l o okin g u p o nly w hen t h ey w ere
s a fe ly in sid e th e c av ern ous, to rc h -lit e n tr a n ce h all, w ith its m ag nif ic en t m arb le
s ta ir c ase .
“B lim ey,” sa id R on, sh ak in g h is h ead a n d se n din g w ate r e v ery w here , “ if
t h at k eep s u p t h e l a k e's g oin g t o o verflo w . I 'm s o ak — ARRG H!”
A la rg e, r e d , w ate r- fille d b allo on h ad d ro pped f ro m o ut o f th e c eilin g o nto
R on's h ead a n d e x plo ded . D re n ch ed a n d s p utte rin g, R on s ta g gere d s id ew ay s i n to
H arry , ju st a s a se co nd w ate r b om b d ro pped — narro w ly m is sin g H erm io ne, it
b urs t a t H arry 's fe et, se n din g a w av e o f c o ld w ate r o ver h is sn eak ers in to h is
s o ck s. P eo ple a ll a ro und th em s h rie k ed a n d s ta rte d p ush in g o ne a n oth er in th eir
e ff o rts t o g et o ut o f t h e l in e o f f ir e . H arry l o oked u p a n d s a w , f lo atin g t w en ty f e et
a b ove th em , P eev es th e P olte rg eis t, a little m an in a b ell- c o vere d h at a n d o ra n ge
b ow tie , h is w id e, m alic io us fa ce c o nto rte d w ith c o ncen tr a tio n a s h e to ok a im
a g ain .
“P E EV ES!” y elle d a n a n gry v oic e. “ P eev es, c o m e d ow n h ere a t O NCE!”
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all, D ep uty H ead m is tr e ss an d head of G ry ff in dor
H ouse , h ad c o m e d ash in g o ut o f t h e G re at H all; s h e s k id ded o n t h e w et f lo or a n d
g ra b bed H erm io ne a ro und t h e n eck t o s to p h ers e lf f ro m f a llin g.
“O uch — so rry , M is s G ra n ger— ”
“T hat's a ll r ig ht, P ro fe sso r!” H erm io ne g asp ed , m assa g in g h er t h ro at.
“P eev es, get dow n here NOW !” bark ed Pro fe sso r McG onag all,
s tr a ig hte n in g h er p oin te d h at an d g la rin g u pw ard th ro ugh h er sq uare -rim med
s p ecta cle s.
“N ot d oin g n oth in g!” c ack le d P eev es, l o bbin g a w ate r b om b a t s e v era l f if th -
y ear g ir ls , w ho sc re am ed a n d d iv ed in to th e G re at H all. “ A lr e ad y w et, a re n 't
t h ey ? L ittle s q uir ts ! W heeeeeee eee!” A nd h e a im ed a n oth er b om b a t a g ro up o f

se co nd y ears w ho h ad j u st a rriv ed .
“I s h all c all th e h ead m aste r!” s h oute d P ro fe sso r M cG onag all. “ I'm w arn in g
you, P eev es— ”
Peev es s tu ck o ut h is to ngue, th re w th e la st o f h is w ate r b om bs in to th e a ir ,
an d z o om ed o ff u p t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase , c ack lin g i n sa n ely .
“W ell, m ove alo ng, th en !” sa id Pro fe sso r M cG onag all sh arp ly to th e
bed ra g gle d c ro w d. “ In to t h e G re at H all, c o m e o n!”
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne slip ped a n d slid a cro ss th e e n tr a n ce h all a n d
th ro ugh th e d ouble d oors o n th e r ig ht, R on m utte rin g f u rio usly u nder h is b re ath
as h e p ush ed h is s o ppin g h air o ff h is f a ce.
The G re at H all l o oked i ts u su al s p le n did s e lf , d eco ra te d f o r t h e s ta rt- o f-te rm
fe ast. G old en p la te s a n d g oble ts g le am ed b y th e lig ht o f h undre d s a n d h undre d s
of c an dle s, flo atin g o ver th e ta b le s in m id air. T he fo ur lo ng H ouse ta b le s w ere
pack ed w ith c h atte rin g s tu den ts ; a t th e to p o f th e H all, th e s ta ff s a t a lo ng o ne
sid e o f a f if th t a b le , f a cin g t h eir p upils . I t w as m uch w arm er i n h ere . H arry , R on,
an d H erm io ne w alk ed p ast th e S ly th erin s, th e R av en cla w s, a n d th e H uff le p uff s ,
an d s a t d ow n w ith th e r e st o f th e G ry ff in dors a t th e f a r s id e o f th e H all, n ex t to
Nearly H ead le ss N ic k , th e G ry ff in dor g host. P early w hite a n d s e m itr a n sp are n t,
Nic k w as d re sse d to nig ht in h is u su al d ouble t, b ut w ith a p artic u la rly la rg e r u ff ,
whic h se rv ed th e d ual p urp ose o f lo okin g e x tr a -fe stiv e, a n d in su rin g th at h is
head d id n't w obble t o o m uch o n h is p artia lly s e v ere d n eck .
“G ood e v en in g,” h e s a id , b eam in g a t t h em .
“S ay s w ho?” sa id H arry , ta k in g o ff h is sn eak ers an d em pty in g th em o f
wate r. “ H ope t h ey h urry u p w ith t h e S ortin g. I 'm s ta rv in g.”
The S ortin g o f th e n ew s tu den ts in to H ouse s to ok p la ce a t th e s ta rt o f e v ery
sc h ool y ear, b ut b y a n u nlu ck y c o m bin atio n o f c ir c u m sta n ces, H arry h ad n't b een
pre se n t a t o ne s in ce h is o w n. H e w as q uite lo okin g fo rw ard to it. J u st th en , a
hig hly e x cite d , b re ath le ss v oic e c alle d d ow n t h e t a b le .
“H iy a, H arry !”
It w as C olin C re ev ey, a t h ir d y ear t o w hom H arry w as s o m eth in g o f a h ero .
“H i, C olin ,” s a id H arry w arily .
“H arry , g uess w hat? G uess w hat, H arry ? M y b ro th er's s ta rtin g! M y b ro th er
Den nis !”
“E r— good,” s a id H arry .
“H e's re ally e x cite d !” s a id C olin , p ra ctic ally b ouncin g u p a n d d ow n in h is
se at. “ I j u st h ope h e's i n G ry ff in dor! K eep y our f in gers c ro sse d , e h , H arry ?”
“E r— yeah , a ll rig ht,” s a id H arry . H e tu rn ed b ack to H erm io ne, R on, a n d
Nearly H ead le ss N ic k . “ B ro th ers a n d s is te rs u su ally g o i n t h e s a m e H ouse s, d on't
th ey ?” h e s a id . H e w as j u dgin g b y t h e W easle y s, a ll s e v en o f w hom h ad b een p ut

in to G ry ff in dor.
“O h no, not necessa rily ,” sa id Herm io ne. “P arv ati Patil's tw in 's in
Rav en cla w , a n d t h ey 'r e i d en tic al. Y ou'd t h in k t h ey 'd b e t o geth er, w ould n't y ou?”
Harry lo oked u p a t th e s ta ff ta b le . T here s e em ed to b e ra th er m ore e m pty
se ats th ere th an u su al. H ag rid , o f c o urs e , w as s till fig htin g h is w ay a cro ss th e
la k e w ith th e f ir s t y ears ; P ro fe sso r M cG onag all w as p re su m ab ly s u perv is in g th e
dry in g o f th e e n tr a n ce h all flo or, b ut th ere w as a n oth er e m pty c h air to o, a n d
Harry c o uld n't t h in k w ho e ls e w as m is sin g.
“W here 's th e n ew D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts te ach er? ” s a id H erm io ne,
who w as a ls o l o okin g u p a t t h e t e ach ers .
They h ad n ev er y et h ad a D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts te ach er w ho h ad
la ste d m ore th an th re e te rm s. H arry 's fa v orite b y fa r h ad b een P ro fe sso r L upin ,
who h ad re sig ned la st y ear. H e lo oked u p a n d d ow n th e s ta ff ta b le . T here w as
defin ite ly n o n ew f a ce t h ere .
“M ay be t h ey c o uld n't g et a n yone!” s a id H erm io ne, l o okin g a n xio us.
Harry s c an ned th e ta b le m ore c are fu lly . T in y little P ro fe sso r F litw ic k , th e
Charm s te ach er, w as s ittin g o n a la rg e p ile o f c u sh io ns b esid e P ro fe sso r S pro ut,
th e H erb olo gy te ach er, w hose h at w as a sk ew o ver h er fly aw ay g ra y h air. S he
was ta lk in g to P ro fe sso r S in is tr a o f th e A str o nom y d ep artm en t. O n P ro fe sso r
Sin is tr a 's o th er sid e w as th e sa llo w -fa ced , h ook-n ose d , g re asy -h air e d P otio ns
maste r, S nap e— Harry 's le ast fa v orite p ers o n a t H ogw arts . H arry 's lo ath in g o f
Snap e w as m atc h ed only by S nap e's hatr e d of him , a hatr e d w hic h had , if
possib le , in te n sif ie d la st y ear, w hen H arry h ad h elp ed S ir iu s e sc ap e r ig ht u nder
Snap e's o verla rg e n ose — Snap e an d S ir iu s h ad b een en em ie s sin ce th eir o w n
sc h ool d ay s.
On Snap e's oth er sid e w as an em pty se at, w hic h H arry guesse d w as
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all's . N ex t to it, an d in th e v ery cen te r o f th e ta b le , sa t
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore , th e head m aste r, his sw eep in g silv er hair an d beard
sh in in g in th e c an dle lig ht, h is m ag nif ic en t d eep g re en ro bes e m bro id ere d w ith
man y s ta rs a n d m oons. T he t ip s o f D um ble d ore 's l o ng, t h in f in gers w ere t o geth er
an d h e w as r e stin g h is c h in u pon t h em , s ta rin g u p a t t h e c eilin g t h ro ugh h is h alf -
moon s p ecta cle s a s t h ough l o st i n t h ought. H arry g la n ced u p a t t h e c eilin g t o o. I t
was e n ch an te d to lo ok lik e th e s k y o uts id e, a n d h e h ad n ev er s e en it lo ok th is
sto rm y. B la ck an d purp le clo uds w ere sw ir lin g acro ss it, an d as an oth er
th underc la p s o unded o uts id e, a f o rk o f l ig htn in g f la sh ed a cro ss i t.
“O h h urry u p,” R on m oan ed , b esid e H arry , “ I c o uld e at a h ip pogrif f .”
The w ord s w ere n o s o oner o ut o f h is m outh t h an t h e d oors o f t h e G re at H all
open ed a n d s ile n ce fe ll. P ro fe sso r M cG onag all w as le ad in g a lo ng lin e o f fir s t
years u p to th e to p o f th e H all. If H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne w ere w et, it w as

noth in g to h ow th ese f ir s t y ears lo oked . T hey a p peare d to h av e s w um a cro ss th e
la k e ra th er th an s a ile d . A ll o f th em w ere s h iv erin g w ith a c o m bin atio n o f c o ld
an d n erv es a s th ey f ile d a lo ng th e s ta ff ta b le a n d c am e to a h alt in a lin e f a cin g
th e re st o f th e sc h ool— all o f th em e x cep t th e sm alle st o f th e lo t, a b oy w ith
mousy h air , w ho w as w ra p ped in w hat H arry re co gniz ed a s H ag rid 's m ole sk in
overc o at. T he c o at w as s o b ig f o r h im t h at i t h ooked a s t h ough h e w ere d ra p ed i n
a f u rry b la ck c ir c u s te n t. H is s m all f a ce p ro tr u ded f ro m o ver th e c o lla r, lo okin g
alm ost p ain fu lly e x cite d . W hen h e h ad lin ed u p w ith h is te rrif ie d -lo okin g p eers ,
he c au ght C olin C re ev ey 's e y e, g av e a d ouble th um bs-u p, a n d m outh ed , I f e ll in
th e l a k e! H e l o oked p ositiv ely d elig hte d a b out i t.
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all now pla ced a th re e-le g ged sto ol on th e gro und
befo re th e f ir s t y ears a n d, o n to p o f it, a n e x tr e m ely o ld , d ir ty p atc h ed w iz ard 's
hat. T he fir s t y ears s ta re d a t it. S o d id e v ery one e ls e . F or a m om en t, th ere w as
sile n ce. T hen a lo ng te ar n ear th e b rim o pen ed w id e lik e a m outh , a n d th e h at
bro ke i n to s o ng:
A t h ousa n d y ears o r m ore a g o,
When I w as n ew ly s e w n,
There l iv ed f o ur w iz ard s o f r e n ow n,
Whose n am es a re s till w ell k now n:
Bold G ry ff in dor, f ro m w ild m oor,
Fair R av en cla w , f ro m g le n ,
Sw eet H uff le p uff , f ro m v alle y b ro ad ,
Shre w d S ly th erin , f ro m f in .
They s h are d a w is h , a h ope, a d re am ,
They h atc h ed a d arin g p la n
To e d ucate y oung s o rc ere rs
Thus H ogw arts S ch ool b eg an .
Now e ach o f t h ese f o ur f o unders
Form ed t h eir o w n h ouse , f o r e ach
Did v alu e d if f e re n t v ir tu es
In t h e o nes t h ey h ad t o t e ach .
By G ry ff in dor, t h e b ra v est w ere
Priz ed f a r b ey ond t h e r e st;
For R av en cla w , t h e c le v ere st
Would a lw ay s b e t h e b est;
For H uff le p uff , h ard w ork ers w ere
Most w orth y o f a d m is sio n;
And p ow er- h ungry S ly th erin
Loved t h ose o f g re at a m bitio n.

While s till a liv e t h ey d id d iv id e
Their f a v orite s f ro m t h e t h ro ng,
Yet h ow t o p ic k t h e w orth y o nes
When t h ey w ere d ead a n d g one?
'T w as G ry ff in dor w ho f o und t h e w ay,
He w hip ped m e o ff h is h ead
The f o unders p ut s o m e b ra in s i n m e
So I c o uld c h oose i n ste ad !
Now s lip m e s n ug a b out y our e ars ,
I'v e n ev er y et b een w ro ng,
I'l l h av e a l o ok i n sid e y our m in d
And t e ll w here y ou b elo ng!
The G re at H all r a n g w ith a p pla u se a s t h e S ortin g H at f in is h ed .
“T hat's n ot th e s o ng it s a n g w hen it S orte d u s,” s a id H arry , c la p pin g a lo ng
with e v ery one e ls e .
“S in gs a d if f e re n t o ne e v ery y ear,” s a id R on. “ It's g ot to b e a p re tty b orin g
lif e , h asn 't i t, b ein g a h at? I s u ppose i t s p en ds a ll y ear m ak in g u p t h e n ex t o ne.”
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all w as n ow u nro llin g a l a rg e s c ro ll o f p arc h m en t.
“W hen I c all o ut y our n am e, y ou w ill p ut o n th e h at a n d s it o n th e s to ol,”
sh e t o ld t h e f ir s t y ears . “ W hen t h e h at a n nounces y our H ouse , y ou w ill g o a n d s it
at t h e a p pro pria te t a b le .
“A ck erle y, S te w art! ”
A b oy w alk ed fo rw ard , v is ib ly tr e m blin g fro m h ead to fo ot, p ic k ed u p th e
Sortin g H at, p ut i t o n, a n d s a t d ow n o n t h e s to ol.
“R AV EN CLA W !” s h oute d t h e h at.
Ste w art A ck erle y to ok o ff th e h at a n d h urrie d in to a s e at a t th e R av en cla w
ta b le , w here e v ery one w as a p pla u din g h im . H arry c au ght a g lim pse o f C ho, th e
Rav en cla w S eek er, c h eerin g S te w art A ck erle y a s h e sa t d ow n. F or a fle etin g
se co nd, H arry h ad a s tr a n ge d esir e t o j o in t h e R av en cla w t a b le t o o.
“B ad dock , M alc o lm !”
“S LY TH ER IN !”
The ta b le o n th e o th er s id e o f th e h all e ru pte d w ith c h eers ; H arry c o uld s e e
Malf o y cla p pin g as B ad dock jo in ed th e S ly th erin s. H arry w ondere d w heth er
Bad dock k new th at S ly th erin H ouse h ad tu rn ed o ut m ore D ark w itc h es an d
wiz ard s th an a n y o th er. F re d a n d G eo rg e h is se d M alc o lm B ad dock a s h e sa t
dow n.
“B ra n sto ne, E le an or!”
“H UFFL EPU FF!”
“C au ld w ell, O wen !”

“H UFFL EPU FF!”
“C re ev ey, D en nis !”
Tin y D en nis C re ev ey s ta g gere d fo rw ard , tr ip pin g o ver H ag rid 's m ole sk in ,
ju st a s H ag rid h im se lf s id le d in to th e H all th ro ugh a d oor b eh in d th e te ach ers '
ta b le . A bout tw ic e a s ta ll a s a n orm al m an , a n d a t le ast th re e tim es a s b ro ad ,
Hag rid , w ith his lo ng, w ild , ta n gle d bla ck hair an d beard , lo oked slig htly
ala rm in g— a m is le ad in g im pre ssio n, f o r H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne k new H ag rid
to p osse ss a v ery k in d n atu re . H e w in ked a t t h em a s h e s a t d ow n a t t h e e n d o f t h e
sta ff t a b le a n d w atc h ed D en nis C re ev ey p uttin g o n t h e S ortin g H at. T he r ip a t t h e
brim o pen ed w id e— —
“G RY FFIN DOR!” t h e h at s h oute d .
Hag rid cla p ped alo ng w ith th e G ry ff in dors as D en nis C re ev ey, b eam in g
wid ely , to ok o ff th e h at, p la ced it b ack o n th e s to ol, a n d h urrie d o ver to jo in h is
bro th er.
“C olin , I fe ll in !” h e s a id s h rilly , th ro w in g h im se lf in to a n e m pty s e at. “ It
was b rillia n t! A nd s o m eth in g i n t h e w ate r g ra b bed m e a n d p ush ed m e b ack i n t h e
boat! ”
“C ool! ” sa id C olin , ju st as ex cite d ly . “It w as p ro bab ly th e g ia n t sq uid ,
Den nis !”
“W ow !” s a id D en nis , a s th ough n obody in th eir w ild est d re am s c o uld h ope
fo r m ore th an b ein g th ro w n in to a s to rm -to sse d , f a th om s-d eep la k e, a n d p ush ed
out o f i t a g ain b y a g ia n t s e a m onste r.
“D en nis ! D en nis ! S ee t h at b oy d ow n t h ere ? T he o ne w ith t h e b la ck h air a n d
gla sse s? S ee h im ? K now w ho h e i s , D en nis ? ”
Harry l o oked a w ay, s ta rin g v ery h ard a t t h e S ortin g H at, n ow S ortin g E m ma
Dobbs.
The S ortin g c o ntin ued ; b oys a n d g ir ls w ith v ary in g d eg re es o f frig ht o n
th eir fa ces m ovin g o ne b y o ne to th e th re e-le g ged sto ol, th e lin e d w in dlin g
slo w ly a s P ro fe sso r M cG onag all p asse d t h e L 's .
“O h h urry u p,” R on m oan ed , m assa g in g h is s to m ach .
“N ow , R on, th e S ortin g's m uch m ore im porta n t th an fo od,” sa id N early
Head le ss N ic k a s “ M ad le y, L au ra !” b ecam e a H uff le p uff .
“C ours e i t i s , i f y ou'r e d ead ,” s n ap ped R on.
“I d o h ope th is y ear's b atc h o f G ry ff in dors a re u p to s c ra tc h ,” s a id N early
Head le ss N ic k , a p pla u din g a s “ M cD onald , N ata lie !” jo in ed th e G ry ff in dor ta b le .
“W e d on't w an t t o b re ak o ur w in nin g s tr e ak , d o w e?”
Gry ff in dor h ad w on th e I n te r- H ouse C ham pio nsh ip f o r th e la st th re e y ears
in a r o w .
“P ritc h ard , G ra h am !”

“S LY TH ER IN !”
“Q uir k e, O rla !”
“R AV EN CLA W !”
And f in ally , w ith “ W hitb y, K ev in !” ( “ H UFFL EPU FF!” ), th e S ortin g e n ded .
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all p ic k ed u p t h e h at a n d t h e s to ol a n d c arrie d t h em a w ay.
“A bout tim e,” s a id R on, s e iz in g h is k nif e a n d f o rk a n d lo okin g e x pecta n tly
at h is g old en p la te .
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore h ad g otte n to h is f e et. H e w as s m ilin g a ro und a t th e
stu den ts , h is a rm s o pen ed w id e i n w elc o m e.
“I h av e o nly t w o w ord s t o s a y t o y ou,” h e t o ld t h em , h is d eep v oic e e ch oin g
aro und t h e H all. “ T uck i n .”
“H ear, hear!” sa id H arry an d R on lo udly as th e em pty dis h es fille d
mag ic ally b efo re t h eir e y es.
Nearly H ead le ss N ic k w atc h ed m ourn fu lly a s H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne
lo ad ed t h eir o w n p la te s.
“A aah , 'a t's b e'e r,” s a id R on, w ith h is m outh f u ll o f m ash ed p ota to .
“Y ou'r e l u ck y t h ere 's a f e ast a t a ll t o nig ht, y ou k now ,” s a id N early H ead le ss
Nic k . “ T here w as t r o uble i n t h e k itc h en s e arlie r.”
“W hy? W ha' 'a p pen ed ?” s a id H arry , t h ro ugh a s iz ab le c h unk o f s te ak .
“P eev es, o f c o urs e ,” sa id N early H ead le ss N ic k , sh ak in g h is h ead , w hic h
wobble d d an gero usly . H e p ulle d h is ru ff a little h ig her u p o n h is n eck . “ T he
usu al a rg um en t, y ou k now . H e w an te d to a tte n d th e f e ast— well, it's q uite o ut o f
th e q uestio n, y ou k now w hat h e's lik e, u tte rly u nciv iliz ed , c an 't s e e a p la te o f
fo od w ith out th ro w in g it. W e h eld a g host's c o uncil— th e F at F ria r w as a ll fo r
giv in g h im th e c h an ce— but m ost w is e ly , in m y o pin io n, th e B lo ody B aro n p ut
his f o ot d ow n.”
The B lo ody B aro n w as th e S ly th erin ghost, a gau nt an d sile n t sp ecte r
co vere d in s ilv er b lo odsta in s. H e w as th e o nly p ers o n a t H ogw arts w ho c o uld
re ally c o ntr o l P eev es.
“Y eah , w e th ought P eev es s e em ed h ack ed o ff a b out s o m eth in g,” s a id R on
dark ly . “ S o w hat d id h e d o i n t h e k itc h en s? ”
“O h t h e u su al,” s a id N early H ead le ss N ic k , s h ru ggin g. “ W re ak ed h av oc a n d
may hem . P ots an d p an s ev ery w here . P la ce sw im min g in so up. T errif ie d th e
house -e lv es o ut o f t h eir w its — ”
Cla n g.
Herm io ne had knock ed over her gold en goble t. P um pkin ju ic e sp re ad
ste ad ily o ver th e ta b le clo th , sta in in g se v era l fe et o f w hite lin en o ra n ge, b ut
Herm io ne p aid n o a tte n tio n.
“T here are h ouse -e lv es h ere ?” sh e sa id , sta rin g, h orro r- s tr u ck , at N early

Head le ss N ic k . “ H ere a t H ogw arts ? ”
“C erta in ly ,” s a id N early H ead le ss N ic k , lo okin g s u rp ris e d a t h er re actio n.
“T he l a rg est n um ber i n a n y d w ellin g i n B rita in , I b elie v e. O ver a h undre d .”
“I'v e n ev er s e en o ne!” s a id H erm io ne.
“W ell, th ey h ard ly e v er le av e th e k itc h en b y d ay, d o th ey ?” sa id N early
Head le ss N ic k . “ T hey c o m e o ut a t n ig ht t o d o a b it o f c le an in g… s e e t o t h e f ir e s
an d s o o n… I m ean , y ou'r e n ot s u ppose d to s e e th em , a re y ou? T hat's th e m ark
of a g ood h ouse -e lf , i s n 't i t, t h at y ou d on't k now i t's t h ere ?”
Herm io ne s ta re d a t h im .
“B ut th ey g et p aid ?” s h e s a id . “ T hey g et h olid ay s, d on't th ey ? A nd— an d
sic k l e av e, a n d p en sio ns, a n d e v ery th in g?”
Nearly H ead le ss N ic k c h ortle d s o m uch th at h is ru ff s lip ped a n d h is h ead
flo pped o ff , d an glin g o n th e in ch o r so o f g hostly sk in a n d m usc le th at still
atta ch ed i t t o h is n eck .
“S ic k le av e an d pen sio ns? ” he sa id , push in g his head back onto his
sh ould ers a n d s e cu rin g it o nce m ore w ith h is r u ff . “ H ouse -e lv es d on't w an t s ic k
le av e a n d p en sio ns!”
Herm io ne lo oked d ow n a t h er h ard ly to uch ed p la te o f fo od, th en p ut h er
knif e a n d f o rk d ow n u pon i t a n d p ush ed i t a w ay f ro m h er.
“O h c 'm on, 'E r- m y-k nee,” s a id R on, a ccid en ta lly s p ra y in g H arry w ith b its
of Y ork sh ir e p uddin g. “ O ops— so rry , 'A rry — ” H e sw allo w ed . “ Y ou w on't g et
th em s ic k l e av e b y s ta rv in g y ours e lf !”
“S la v e la b or,” sa id H erm io ne, b re ath in g h ard th ro ugh h er n ose . “T hat's
what m ad e t h is d in ner. S la v e l a b or.”
And s h e r e fu se d t o e at a n oth er b ite .
The ra in w as s till d ru m min g h eav ily a g ain st th e h ig h, d ark g la ss. A noth er
cla p o f th under s h ook th e w in dow s, a n d th e s to rm y c eilin g f la sh ed , illu m in atin g
th e g old en p la te s a s th e r e m ain s o f th e f ir s t c o urs e v an is h ed a n d w ere r e p la ced ,
in sta n tly , w ith p uddin gs.
“T re acle ta rt, H erm io ne!” sa id R on, d elib era te ly w aftin g its sm ell to w ard
her. “ S potte d d ic k , l o ok! C hoco la te g ate au !”
But H erm io ne g av e h im a lo ok so re m in is c en t o f P ro fe sso r M cG onag all
th at h e g av e u p.
When t h e p uddin gs t o o h ad b een d em olis h ed , a n d t h e l a st c ru m bs h ad f a d ed
off th e p la te s, le av in g th em s p ark lin g c le an , A lb us D um ble d ore g ot to h is fe et
ag ain . T he b uzz o f c h atte r f illin g t h e H all c ease d a lm ost a t o nce, s o t h at o nly t h e
how lin g w in d a n d p oundin g r a in c o uld b e h eard .
“S o!” s a id D um ble d ore , s m ilin g a ro und a t th em a ll. “ N ow th at w e a re a ll
fe d a n d w ate re d ,” (“ H m ph!” sa id H erm io ne) “ I m ust o nce m ore a sk fo r y our

atte n tio n, w hile I g iv e o ut a f e w n otic es.
“M r. F ilc h , th e c are ta k er, h as a sk ed m e to te ll y ou th at th e lis t o f o bje cts
fo rb id den i n sid e t h e c astle h as t h is y ear b een e x te n ded t o i n clu de S cre am in g Y o-
yos, F an ged F ris b ees, a n d E ver- B ash in g B oom era n gs. T he fu ll lis t c o m pris e s
so m e fo ur h undre d a n d th ir ty -s e v en ite m s, I b elie v e, a n d c an b e v ie w ed in M r.
Filc h 's o ff ic e, i f a n ybody w ould l ik e t o c h eck i t.”
The c o rn ers o f D um ble d ore 's m outh tw itc h ed . H e c o ntin ued , “ A s e v er, I
would lik e to re m in d y ou a ll th at th e fo re st o n th e g ro unds is o ut- o f-b ounds to
stu den ts , a s i s t h e v illa g e o f H ogsm ead e t o a ll b elo w t h ir d y ear.
“It is a ls o m y p ain fu l d uty to in fo rm y ou th at th e In te r- H ouse Q uid ditc h
Cup w ill n ot t a k e p la ce t h is y ear.”
“W hat? ” H arry g asp ed . H e lo oked a ro und a t F re d a n d G eo rg e, h is fe llo w
mem bers of th e Quid ditc h te am . They were mouth in g so undle ssly at
Dum ble d ore , a p pare n tly to o a p palle d to s p eak . D um bhed ore w en t o n, “ T his is
due to a n e v en t th at w ill b e s ta rtin g in O cto ber, a n d c o ntin uin g th ro ughout th e
sc h ool y ear, t a k in g u p m uch o f t h e t e ach ers ' t im e a n d e n erg y— but I a m s u re y ou
will a ll e n jo y it im men se ly . I h av e g re at p le asu re in a n nouncin g th at th is y ear a t
Hogw arts — ”
But a t th at m om en t, th ere w as a d eafe n in g r u m ble o f th under a n d th e d oors
of t h e G re at H all b an ged o pen .
A m an s to od in th e d oorw ay, le an in g u pon a lo ng s ta ff , s h ro uded in a b la ck
tr a v elin g clo ak . E very h ead in th e G re at H all sw iv ele d to w ard th e str a n ger,
su dden ly brig htly illu m in ate d by a fo rk of lig htn in g th at fla sh ed acro ss th e
ceilin g. H e lo w ere d h is h ood, s h ook o ut a lo ng m an e o f g riz zle d , d ark g ra y h air ,
th en b eg an t o w alk u p t o w ard t h e t e ach ers ' t a b le .
A d ull c lu nk e ch oed th ro ugh th e H all o n h is e v ery o th er s te p . H e re ach ed
th e e n d o f th e to p ta b le , tu rn ed rig ht, a n d lim ped h eav ily to w ard D um ble d ore .
Anoth er f la sh o f l ig htn in g c ro sse d t h e c eilin g. H erm io ne g asp ed .
The lig htn in g h ad th ro w n th e m an 's f a ce in to s h arp r e lie f, a n d it w as a f a ce
unlik e a n y H arry h ad e v er s e en . It lo oked a s th ough it h ad b een c arv ed o ut o f
weath ere d w ood b y so m eo ne w ho h ad o nly th e v ag uest id ea o f w hat h um an
fa ces a re s u ppose d to lo ok lik e, a n d w as n one to o s k ille d w ith a c h is e l. E very
in ch o f s k in s e em ed to b e s c arre d . T he m outh lo oked lik e a d ia g onal g ash , a n d a
la rg e c h unk o f th e n ose w as m is sin g. B ut it w as th e m an 's e y es th at m ad e h im
frig hte n in g.
One o f th em w as s m all, d ark , a n d b ead y. T he o th er w as la rg e, ro und a s a
co in , a n d a v iv id , e le ctr ic b lu e. T he b lu e e y e w as m ovin g c ease le ssly , w ith out
blin kin g, a n d w as r o llin g u p, d ow n, a n d f ro m s id e t o s id e, q uite i n dep en den tly o f
th e n orm al e y e— an d t h en i t r o lle d r ig ht o ver, p oin tin g i n to t h e b ack o f t h e m an 's

head , s o t h at a ll t h ey c o uld s e e w as w hite n ess.
The str a n ger re ach ed D um ble d ore . H e str e tc h ed o ut a h an d th at w as as
bad ly sc arre d as h is fa ce, an d D um bhed ore sh ook it, m utte rin g w ord s H arry
co uld n't h ear. H e s e em ed to b e m ak in g s o m e in quir y o f th e s tr a n ger, w ho s h ook
his head unsm ilin gly an d re p lie d in an underto ne. D um ble d ore nodded an d
gestu re d t h e m an t o t h e e m pty s e at o n h is r ig ht- h an d s id e.
The s tr a n ger s a t d ow n, s h ook h is m an e o f d ark g ra y h air o ut o f h is fa ce,
pulle d a p la te o f s a u sa g es to w ard h im , r a is e d it to w hat w as le ft o f h is n ose , a n d
sn if f e d it. H e th en to ok a s m all k nif e o ut o f h is p ock et, s p eare d a s a u sa g e o n th e
en d o f it, a n d b eg an to e at. H is n orm al e y e w as f ix ed u pon th e s a u sa g es, b ut th e
blu e e y e w as s till d artin g re stle ssly a ro und in its s o ck et, ta k in g in th e H all a n d
th e s tu den ts .
“M ay I in tr o duce o ur n ew D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts te ach er? ” sa id
Dum ble d ore b rig htly i n to t h e s ile n ce. “ P ro fe sso r M oody.”
It w as u su al f o r n ew s ta ff m em bers t o b e g re ete d w ith a p pla u se , b ut n one o f
th e s ta ff o r s tu den ts c h ap ped e x cep t D um ble d ore a n d H ag rid , w ho b oth p ut th eir
han ds to geth er a n d a p pla u ded , b ut th e s o und e ch oed d is m ally in to th e s ile n ce,
an d t h ey s to pped f a ir ly q uic k ly . E very one e ls e s e em ed t o o t r a n sfix ed b y M oody's
biz arre a p peara n ce t o d o m ore t h an s ta re a t h im .
“M oody?” H arry m utte re d to R on. “ M ad -E ye M oody? T he o ne y our d ad
wen t t o h elp t h is m orn in g?”
“M ust b e,” s a id R on i n a l o w , a w ed v oic e.
“W hat h ap pen ed to h im ?” H erm io ne w his p ere d . “W hat h ap pen ed to h is
fa ce?”
“D unno,” R on w his p ere d b ack , w atc h in g M oody w ith f a sc in atio n.
Moody s e em ed to ta lly in dif f e re n t to h is le ss-th an -w arm w elc o m e. I g norin g
th e ju g o f p um pkin ju ic e in fro nt o f h im , h e re ach ed a g ain in to h is tr a v elin g
clo ak , p ulle d o ut a h ip f la sk , a n d t o ok a l o ng d ra u ght f ro m i t. A s h e l if te d h is a rm
to d rin k, h is c lo ak w as p ulle d a fe w in ch es fro m th e g ro und, a n d H arry sa w ,
belo w t h e t a b le , s e v era l i n ch es o f c arv ed w ooden l e g , e n din g i n a c la w ed f o ot.
Dum ble d ore c le are d h is t h ro at.
“A s I w as s a y in g,” h e s a id , s m ilin g a t th e s e a o f s tu den ts b efo re h im , a ll o f
whom w ere s till g azin g t r a n sfix ed a t M ad -E ye M oody, “ w e a re t o h av e t h e h onor
of h ostin g a v ery e x citin g e v en t o ver th e c o m in g m onth s, a n e v en t th at h as n ot
been h eld f o r o ver a c en tu ry . I t is m y v ery g re at p le asu re to in fo rm y ou th at th e
Triw iz ard T ourn am en t w ill b e t a k in g p la ce a t H ogw arts t h is y ear.”
“Y ou'r e J O KIN G!” s a id F re d W easle y l o udly .
The te n sio n th at h ad fille d th e H all e v er sin ce M oody's a rriv al su dden ly
bro ke. N early e v ery one l a u ghed , a n d D um ble d ore c h uck le d a p pre cia tiv ely .

“I a m n ot j o kin g, M r. W easle y,” h e s a id , “ th ough n ow t h at y ou m en tio n i t, I
did h ear a n e x celle n t o ne o ver th e s u m mer a b out a tr o ll, a h ag , a n d a le p re ch au n
who a ll g o i n to a b ar.
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all c le are d h er t h ro at l o udly .
“E r— but m ay be t h is i s n ot t h e t im e… n o… ” s a id D um ble d ore , “ w here w as
I? A h y es, th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t… w ell, s o m e o f y ou w ill n ot k now w hat
th is to urn am en t in volv es, so I h ope th ose w ho d o k now w ill fo rg iv e m e fo r
giv in g a s h ort e x pla n atio n, a n d a llo w t h eir a tte n tio n t o w an der f re ely .
“T he T riw iz ard T ourn am en t w as f ir s t e sta b lis h ed s o m e s e v en h undre d y ears
ag o as a frie n dly co m petitio n b etw een th e th re e la rg est E uro pean sc h ools o f
wiz ard ry : H ogw arts , B eau xbato ns, a n d D urm str a n g. A c h am pio n w as s e le cte d t o
re p re se n t e ach s c h ool, a n d th e th re e c h am pio ns c o m pete d in th re e m ag ic al ta sk s.
The s c h ools to ok it in tu rn s to h ost th e to urn am en t o nce e v ery f iv e y ears , a n d it
was g en era lly a g re ed to b e a m ost e x celle n t w ay o f e sta b lis h in g tie s b etw een
young w itc h es a n d w iz ard s o f d if f e re n t n atio nalitie s— until, t h at i s , t h e d eath t o ll
mounte d s o h ig h t h at t h e t o urn am en t w as d is c o ntin ued .”
“D eath to ll? ” H erm io ne w his p ere d , lo okin g a la rm ed . B ut h er a n xie ty d id
not s e em t o b e s h are d b y t h e m ajo rity o f s tu den ts i n t h e H all; m an y o f t h em w ere
whis p erin g e x cite d ly to o ne a n oth er, a n d H arry h im se lf w as f a r m ore in te re ste d
in h earin g a b out t h e t o urn am en t t h an i n w orry in g a b out d eath s t h at h ad h ap pen ed
hundre d s o f y ears a g o.
“T here hav e been se v era l atte m pts over th e cen tu rie s to re in sta te th e
to urn am en t,” D um ble d ore c o ntin ued , “ n one o f w hic h h as b een v ery s u ccessfu l.
How ev er, our ow n dep artm en ts of In te rn atio nal M ag ic al C oopera tio n an d
Mag ic al G am es a n d S ports h av e d ecid ed t h e t im e i s r ip e f o r a n oth er a tte m pt. W e
hav e w ork ed h ard o ver th e s u m mer to e n su re th at th is tim e, n o c h am pio n w ill
fin d h im se lf o r h ers e lf i n m orta l d an ger.
“T he h ead s o f B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g w ill b e arriv in g w ith th eir
sh ort- lis te d c o nte n ders in O cto ber, a n d th e s e le ctio n o f th e th re e c h am pio ns w ill
ta k e p la ce a t H allo w een . A n i m partia l j u dge w ill d ecid e w hic h s tu den ts a re m ost
worth y to co m pete fo r th e T riw iz ard C up, th e glo ry of th eir sc h ool, an d a
th ousa n d G alle o ns p ers o nal p riz e m oney.”
“I'm g oin g fo r it! ” F re d W easle y h is se d d ow n th e ta b le , h is fa ce lit w ith
en th usia sm a t th e p ro sp ect o f s u ch g lo ry a n d r ic h es. H e w as n ot th e o nly p ers o n
who se em ed to b e v is u aliz in g h im se lf as th e H ogw arts ch am pio n. A t ev ery
House ta b le , H arry c o uld s e e p eo ple e ith er g azin g r a p tly a t D um ble d ore , o r e ls e
whis p erin g f e rv en tly to th eir n eig hbors . B ut th en D um ble d ore s p oke a g ain , a n d
th e H all q uie te d o nce m ore .
“E ag er th ough I k now a ll o f y ou w ill b e to b rin g th e T riw iz ard C up to

Hogw arts ,” he sa id , “th e head s of th e partic ip atin g sc h ools , alo ng w ith th e
Min is tr y o f M ag ic , h av e a g re ed to im pose a n a g e re str ic tio n o n c o nte n ders th is
year. O nly s tu den ts w ho a re o f a g e— th at is to s a y, s e v en te en y ears o r o ld er—
will be allo w ed to put fo rw ard th eir nam es fo r co nsid era tio n. This ” —
Dum ble d ore ra is e d h is v oic e slig htly , fo r se v era l p eo ple h ad m ad e n ois e s o f
outr a g e a t th ese w ord s, a n d th e W easle y tw in s w ere su dden ly lo okin g fu rio us
—”is a m easu re w e f e el i s n ecessa ry , g iv en t h at t h e t o urn am en t t a sk s w ill s till b e
dif f ic u lt a n d d an gero us, w hate v er p re cau tio ns w e ta k e, a n d it is h ig hly u nlik ely
th at s tu den ts b elo w s ix th a n d s e v en th y ear w ill b e a b le to c o pe w ith th em . I w ill
pers o nally b e e n su rin g th at n o u ndera g e s tu den t h oodw in ks o ur im partia l ju dge
in to m ak in g th em H og-w arts c h am pio n.” H is lig ht b lu e e y es tw in kle d a s th ey
flic k ere d o ver F re d 's a n d G eo rg e's m utin ous fa ces. “ I th ere fo re b eg y ou n ot to
waste y our t im e s u bm ittin g y ours e lf i f y ou a re u nder s e v en te en .
“T he d ele g atio ns fro m B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g w ill b e arriv in g in
Octo ber a n d r e m ain in g w ith u s f o r th e g re ate r p art o f th is y ear. I k now th at y ou
will a ll e x te n d e v ery c o urte sy to o ur fo re ig n g uests w hile th ey a re w ith u s, a n d
will g iv e y our w hole -h earte d s u pport to th e H ogw arts c h am pio n w hen h e o r s h e
is s e le cte d . A nd n ow , it is la te , a n d I k now h ow im porta n t it is to y ou a ll to b e
ale rt a n d re ste d a s y ou e n te r y our le sso ns to m orro w m orn in g. B ed tim e! C hop
ch op!”
Dum ble d ore s a t d ow n a g ain a n d tu rn ed to ta lk to M ad -E ye M oody. T here
was a gre at sc ra p in g an d ban gin g as all th e stu den ts got to th eir fe et an d
sw arm ed t o w ard t h e d ouble d oors i n to t h e e n tr a n ce h all.
“T hey c an 't d o th at! ” s a id G eo rg e W easle y, w ho h ad n ot jo in ed th e c ro w d
movin g t o w ard t h e d oor, b ut w as s ta n din g u p a n d g la rin g a t D um ble d ore . “ W e'r e
se v en te en i n A pril, w hy c an 't w e h av e a s h ot? ”
“T hey 'r e n ot s to ppin g m e e n te rin g,” s a id F re d s tu bborn ly , a ls o s c o w lin g a t
th e to p ta b le . “T he ch am pio ns'l l g et to d o all so rts o f stu ff y ou'd n ev er b e
allo w ed t o d o n orm ally . A nd a t h ousa n d G alle o ns p riz e m oney !”
“Y eah ,” sa id Ron, a fa ra w ay lo ok on his fa ce. “Y eah , a th ousa n d
Galle o ns… ”
“C om e o n,” s a id H erm io ne, “ w e'l l b e th e o nly o nes le ft h ere if y ou d on't
move.”
Harry , R on, H erm io ne, F re d , a n d G eo rg e s e t o ff f o r th e e n tr a n ce h all, F re d
an d G eo rg e d eb atin g th e w ay s in w hic h D um ble d ore m ig ht s to p th ose w ho w ere
under s e v en te en f ro m e n te rin g t h e t o urn am en t.
“W ho's t h is i m partia l j u dge w ho's g oin g t o d ecid e w ho t h e c h am pio ns a re ?”
sa id H arry .
“D unno,” s a id F re d , “ b ut it's th em w e'l l h av e to f o ol. I r e ck on a c o uple o f

dro ps o f A gin g P otio n m ig ht d o i t, G eo rg e… ”
“D um ble d ore k now s y ou'r e n ot o f a g e, t h ough,” s a id R on.
“Y eah , b ut h e's n ot th e o ne w ho d ecid es w ho th e c h am pio n is , is h e?” s a id
Fre d s h re w dly . “ S ounds to m e lik e o nce th is ju dge k now s w ho w an ts to e n te r,
he'l l ch oose th e best fro m each sc h ool an d nev er m in d how old th ey are .
Dum ble d ore 's t r y in g t o s to p u s g iv in g o ur n am es.”
“P eo ple h av e d ie d , th ough!” sa id H erm io ne in a w orrie d v oic e as th ey
walk ed th ro ugh a door co nceale d beh in d a ta p estr y an d sta rte d up an oth er,
narro w er s ta ir c ase .
“Y eah ,” sa id F re d air ily , “b ut th at w as years ag o, w asn 't it? A nyw ay,
where 's th e f u n w ith out a b it o f r is k ? H ey, R on, w hat if w e f in d o ut h ow to g et
'r o und D um ble d ore ? F an cy e n te rin g?”
“W hat d 'y ou r e ck on?” R on a sk ed H arry . “ B e c o ol to e n te r, w ould n't it? B ut
I s 'p ose t h ey m ig ht w an t s o m eo ne o ld er… D unno i f w e'v e l e arn ed e n ough…
“I d efin ite ly h av en 't ,” c am e N ev ih le 's g lo om y v oic e fro m b eh in d F re d a n d
Geo rg e.
“I e x pect m y g ra n 'd w an t m e to tr y , th ough. S he's a lw ay s g oin g o n a b out
how I s h ould b e u phold in g t h e f a m ily h onor. I 'l l j u st h av e t o — oops… ”
Nev ille 's f o ot h ad s u nk r ig ht th ro ugh a s te p h alf w ay u p th e s ta ir c ase . T here
were m an y o f th ese tr ic k s ta ir s a t H ogw arts ; it w as s e co nd n atu re to m ost o f th e
old er s tu den ts t o j u m p t h is p artic u la r s te p , b ut N ev ille 's m em ory w as n oto rio usly
poor. H arry a n d R on s e iz ed h im u nder th e a rm pits a n d p ulle d h im o ut, w hile a
su it o f a rm or a t t h e t o p o f t h e s ta ir s c re ak ed a n d c la n ked , l a u ghin g w heezily .
“S hut i t, y ou,” s a id R on, b an gin g d ow n its v is o r a s t h ey p asse d . T hey m ad e
th eir w ay u p to t h e e n tr a n ce t o G ry ff in dor T ow er, w hic h w as c o nceale d b eh in d a
la rg e p ortr a it o f a f a t l a d y i n a p in k s ilk d re ss.
“P assw ord ?” s h e s a id a s t h ey a p pro ach ed .
“B ald erd ash ,” s a id G eo rg e, “ a p re fe ct d ow nsta ir s t o ld m e.”
The p ortr a it s w ung f o rw ard to r e v eal a h ole in th e w all th ro ugh w hic h th ey
all c lim bed . A c ra ck lin g f ir e w arm ed th e c ir c u la r c o m mon r o om , w hic h w as f u ll
of sq uash y a rm ch air s a n d ta b le s. H erm io ne c ast th e m errily d an cin g fla m es a
dark lo ok, a n d H arry d is tin ctly h eard h er m utte r “ S la v e la b or” b efo re b id din g
th em g ood n ig ht a n d d is a p pearin g t h ro ugh t h e d oorw ay t o t h e g ir ls ' d orm ito ry .
Harry , R on, an d N ev ille clim bed u p th e la st, sp ir a l sta ir c ase u ntil th ey
re ach ed th eir o w n d orm ito ry , w hic h w as s itu ate d a t th e to p o f th e to w er. F iv e
fo ur- p oste r b ed s w ith d eep c rim so n h an gin gs s to od a g ain st th e w alls , e ach w ith
its o w ner's tr u nk a t th e fo ot. D ean a n d S eam us w ere a lr e ad y g ettin g in to b ed ;
Seam us h ad p in ned h is I re la n d r o se tte t o h is h ead board , a n d D ean h ad t a ck ed u p
a p oste r o f V ik to r K ru m o ver h is b ed sid e ta b le . H is o ld p oste r o f th e W est H am

fo otb all t e am w as p in ned r ig ht n ex t t o i t.
“M en ta l,” R on s ig hed , s h ak in g h is h ead a t th e c o m ple te ly s ta tio nary s o ccer
pla y ers .
Harry , R on, a n d N ev ille g ot in to th eir p aja m as a n d in to b ed . S om eo ne— a
house -e lf , no doubt— had pla ced w arm in g pan s betw een th e sh eets . It w as
ex tr e m ely co m fo rta b le , ly in g th ere in b ed an d lis te n in g to th e sto rm ra g in g
outs id e.
“I m ig ht g o i n f o r i t, y ou k now ,” R on s a id s le ep ily t h ro ugh t h e d ark ness, “ if
Fre d a n d G eo rg e f in d o ut h ow t o … t h e t o urn am en t… y ou n ev er k now , d o y ou?”
“S 'p ose n ot… ”
Harry ro lle d o ver in b ed , a s e rie s o f d azzlin g n ew p ic tu re s fo rm in g in h is
min d's ey e… H e h ad h oodw in ked th e im partia l ju dge in to b elie v in g h e w as
se v en te en … he had beco m e H ogw arts ch am pio n… he w as sta n din g on th e
gro unds, h is a rm s ra is e d in tr iu m ph in fro nt o f th e w hole s c h ool, a ll o f w hom
were a p pla u din g a n d s c re am in g… h e h ad ju st w on th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t.
Cho's f a ce s to od o ut p artic u la rly c le arly in th e b lu rre d c ro w d, h er f a ce g lo w in g
with a d m ir a tio n…
Harry g rin ned i n to h is p illo w , e x cep tio nally g la d t h at R on c o uld n't s e e w hat
he c o uld .

C H APT ER T H IR TEEN
M AD-E Y E M OODY
The sto rm had blo w n its e lf out by th e fo llo w in g m orn in g, th ough th e
c eilin g in th e G re at H all w as s till g lo om y; h eav y c lo uds o f p ew te r g ra y s w ir le d
o verh ead a s H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne e x am in ed th eir n ew c o urs e s c h ed ule s a t
b re ak fa st. A fe w se ats alo ng, F re d , G eo rg e, an d L ee Jo rd an w ere d is c u ssin g
m ag ic al m eth ods o f a g in g th em se lv es a n d b lu ff in g th eir w ay in to th e T riw iz ard
T ourn am en t.
“T oday 's n ot b ad … o uts id e a ll m orn in g,” s a id R on, w ho w as ru nnin g h is
f in ger dow n th e M onday co lu m n of his sc h ed ule . “H erb olo gy w ith th e
H uff le p uff s an d C are of M ag ic al C re atu re s… dam n it, w e'r e still w ith th e
S ly th erin s… ”
“D ouble Div in atio n th is afte rn oon,” Harry gro an ed , lo okin g dow n.
D iv in atio n was his le ast fa v orite su bje ct, ap art fro m Potio ns. Pro fe sso r
T re la w ney k ep t p re d ic tin g H arry 's d eath , w hic h h e f o und e x tr e m ely a n noyin g.
“Y ou sh ould hav e giv en it up lik e m e, sh ould n't you?” sa id H erm io ne
b ris k ly , b utte rin g h ers e lf s o m e to ast. “ T hen y ou'd b e d oin g s o m eth in g s e n sib le
l ik e A rith m an cy.”
“Y ou'r e e atin g a g ain , I n otic e,” s a id R on, w atc h in g H erm io ne a d din g l ib era l
a m ounts o f j a m t o h er t o ast t o o.
“I'v e d ecid ed th ere a re b ette r w ay s o f m ak in g a s ta n d a b out e lf r ig hts ,” s a id
H erm io ne h au ghtily .
“Y eah … a n d y ou w ere h ungry ,” s a id R on, g rin nin g.
There w as a s u dden ru stlin g n ois e a b ove th em , a n d a h undre d o w ls c am e
s o arin g th ro ugh th e open w in dow s carry in g th e m orn in g m ail. In stin ctiv ely ,
H arry lo oked u p, b ut th ere w as n o s ig n o f w hite a m ong th e m ass o f b ro w n a n d
g ra y. T he o w ls c ir c le d th e ta b le s, lo okin g fo r th e p eo ple to w hom th eir le tte rs
a n d pack ag es w ere ad dre sse d . A la rg e ta w ny ow l so are d dow n to N ev ille
L ongbotto m a n d d ep osite d a p arc el i n to h is l a p — Nev ille a lm ost a lw ay s f o rg ot t o
p ack so m eth in g. O n th e o th er sid e o f th e H all D ra co M alf o y's e ag le o w l h ad
l a n ded o n h is s h ould er, c arry in g w hat l o oked lik e h is u su al s u pply o f s w eets a n d
c ak es f ro m h om e. T ry in g to ig nore th e s in kin g f e elin g o f d is a p poin tm en t in h is
s to m ach , H arry re tu rn ed to h is p orrid ge. W as it p ossib le th at so m eth in g h ad
h ap pen ed t o H ed w ig , a n d t h at S ir iu s h ad n't e v en g ot h is l e tte r?
His p re o ccu patio n l a ste d a ll t h e w ay a cro ss t h e s o dden v eg eta b le p atc h u ntil
t h ey a rriv ed in g re en house th re e, b ut h ere h e w as d is tr a cte d b y P ro fe sso r S pro ut

sh ow in g th e c la ss th e u glie st p la n ts H arry h ad e v er se en . In deed , th ey lo oked
le ss l ik e p la n ts t h an t h ic k , b la ck , g ia n t s lu gs, p ro tr u din g v ertic ally o ut o f t h e s o il.
Each w as s q uir m in g s lig htly a n d h ad a n um ber o f la rg e, s h in y s w ellin gs u pon it,
whic h a p peare d t o b e f u ll o f l iq uid .
“B ubotu bers ,” P ro fe sso r S pro ut to ld th em b ris k ly . “ T hey n eed sq ueezin g.
You w ill c o lle ct t h e p us— ”
“T he w hat? ” s a id S eam us F in nig an , s o undin g r e v olte d .
“P us, F in nig an , p us,” s a id P ro fe sso r S pro ut, “ an d i t's e x tr e m ely v alu ab le , s o
don't w aste i t. Y ou w ill c o lle ct t h e p us, I s a y, i n t h ese b ottle s. W ear y our d ra g on-
hid e g lo ves; i t c an d o f u nny t h in gs t o t h e s k in w hen u ndilu te d , b ubotu ber p us.”
Squeezin g th e b ubotu bers w as d is g ustin g, b ut o ddly sa tis fy in g. A s each
sw ellin g w as p opped , a la rg e a m ount o f th ic k y ello w is h -g re en liq uid b urs t f o rth ,
whic h sm elle d str o ngly o f p etr o l. T hey cau ght it in th e b ottle s as P ro fe sso r
Spro ut h ad i n dic ate d , a n d b y t h e e n d o f t h e l e sso n h ad c o lle cte d s e v era l p in ts .
“T his 'l l k eep M ad am P om fre y h ap py,” s a id P ro fe sso r S pro ut, s to pperin g t h e
la st b ottle w ith a c o rk . “ A n e x celle n t re m ed y fo r th e m ore stu bborn fo rm s o f
acn e, b ubotu ber p us. S hould s to p s tu den ts r e so rtin g to d esp era te m easu re s to r id
th em se lv es o f p im ple s.”
“L ik e p oor E lo is e M id gen ,” s a id H an nah A bbott, a H uff le p uff , in a h ush ed
voic e. “ S he t r ie d t o c u rs e h ers o ff .”
“S illy g ir l,” s a id P ro fe sso r S pro ut, s h ak in g h er h ead . “ B ut M ad am P om fre y
fix ed h er n ose b ack o n i n t h e e n d.”
A b oom in g b ell e ch oed fro m th e c astle a cro ss th e w et g ro unds, s ig nalin g
th e e n d o f th e l e sso n, a n d t h e c la ss s e p ara te d ; th e H uff le p uff s c lim bin g t h e s to ne
ste p s fo r T ra n sfig ura tio n, an d th e G ry ff in dors h ead in g in th e o th er d ir e ctio n,
dow n th e s lo pin g la w n to w ard H ag rid 's s m all w ooden c ab in , w hic h s to od o n th e
ed ge o f t h e F orb id den F ore st.
Hag rid w as s ta n din g o uts id e h is h ut, o ne h an d o n t h e c o lla r o f h is e n orm ous
bla ck b oarh ound, F an g. T here w ere s e v era l o pen w ooden c ra te s o n t h e g ro und a t
his f e et, a n d F an g w as w him perin g a n d s tr a in in g a t h is c o lla r, a p pare n tly k een t o
in vestig ate th e c o nte n ts m ore c lo se ly . A s th ey d re w n eare r, a n o dd r a ttlin g n ois e
re ach ed t h eir e ars , p unctu ate d b y w hat s o unded l ik e m in or e x plo sio ns.
“M orn in '! ” H ag rid s a id , g rin nin g a t H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne. “ B e'e r w ait
fe r t h e S ly th erin s, t h ey w on' w an t t e r m is s t h is — Bla st- E nded S kre w ts !”
“C om e a g ain ?” s a id R on.
Hag rid p oin te d d ow n i n to t h e c ra te s.
“E urg h!” s q ueale d L av en der B ro w n, j u m pin g b ack w ard . “ E urg h” j u st a b out
su m med up th e B la st- E nded S kre w ts in H arry 's opin io n. T hey lo oked lik e
defo rm ed , s h ell- le ss lo bste rs , h orrib ly p ale a n d s lim y-lo okin g, w ith le g s s tic k in g

out i n v ery o dd p la ces a n d n o v is ib le h ead s. T here w ere a b out a h undre d o f t h em
in e ach c ra te , e ach a b out s ix in ch es lo ng, c ra w lin g o ver o ne a n oth er, b um pin g
blin dly in to th e s id es o f th e b oxes. T hey w ere g iv in g o ff a v ery p ow erfu l s m ell
of r o ttin g f is h . E very n ow a n d th en , s p ark s w ould f ly o ut o f th e e n d o f a s k re w t,
an d w ith a s m all p hut, i t w ould b e p ro pelle d f o rw ard s e v era l i n ch es.
“O n'y ju s' h atc h ed ,” sa id H ag rid p ro udly , “ so y eh 'l l b e a b le te r ra is e 'e m
yers e lv es! T hought w e'd m ak e a b it o f a p ro je ct o f i t! ”
“A nd w hy w ould w e w an t t o r a is e t h em ?” s a id a c o ld v oic e.
The S ly th erin s h ad a rriv ed . T he sp eak er w as D ra co M alf o y. C ra b be a n d
Goyle w ere c h uck lin g a p pre cia tiv ely a t h is w ord s.
Hag rid l o oked s tu m ped a t t h e q uestio n.
“I m ean , w hat d o t h ey d o?” a sk ed M alf o y. “ W hat i s t h e p oin t o f t h em ?”
Hag rid open ed his m outh , ap pare n tly th in kin g hard ; th ere w as a fe w
se co nds' p au se , th en h e s a id r o ughly , “ T ha's n ex t le sso n, M alf o y. Y er ju s' f e ed in '
'e m to day. N ow , y eh 'l l w an ' te r tr y 'e m o n a f e w d if f 'r e n t th in gs— I'v e n ev er h ad
'e m b efo re , n ot s u re w hat th ey 'l l g o f e r— I g ot a n t e g gs a n ' f ro g liv ers a n ' a b it o '
gra ss s n ak e— ju st t r y 'e m o ut w ith a b it o f e ach .”
“F ir s t p us a n d n ow t h is ,” m utte re d S eam us.
Noth in g b ut d eep a ff e ctio n fo r H ag rid c o uld h av e m ad e H arry , R on, a n d
Herm io ne p ic k u p s q uelc h y h an dfu ls o f f ro g liv er a n d lo w er t h em in to t h e c ra te s
to te m pt th e B la st- E nded S kre w ts . H arry c o uld n't s u ppre ss th e s u sp ic io n th at th e
whole th in g w as en tir e ly p oin tle ss, b ecau se th e sk re w ts d id n't se em to h av e
mouth s.
“O uch !” y elle d D ean T hom as a fte r a b out t e n m in ute s. “ It g ot m e.”
Hag rid h urrie d o ver t o h im , l o okin g a n xio us.
“Its e n d e x plo ded !” s a id D ean a n grily , s h ow in g H ag rid a b urn o n h is h an d.
“A h, y eah , t h at c an h ap pen w hen t h ey b la st o ff ,” s a id H ag rid , n oddin g.
“E urg h!” sa id L av en der B ro w n a g ain . “ E urg h, H ag rid , w hat's th at p oin ty
th in g o n i t? ”
“A h, s o m e o f 'e m h av e g ot s tin gs,” s a id H ag rid e n th usia stic ally ( L av en der
quic k ly w ith dre w h er h an d fro m th e b ox). “ I re ck on th ey 'r e th e m ale s… T he
fe m ale s'v e g ot so rta su ck er th in gs o n th eir b ellie s… I th in k th ey m ig ht b e te r
su ck b lo od.”
“W ell, I c an c erta in ly s e e w hy w e'r e t r y in g t o k eep t h em a liv e,” s a id M alf o y
sa rc astic ally . “ W ho w ould n't w an t p ets t h at c an b urn , s tin g, a n d b ite a ll a t o nce?”
“Ju st b ecau se th ey 'r e n ot v ery p re tty , it d oesn 't m ean th ey 'r e n ot u se fu l,”
Herm io ne s n ap ped . “ D ra g on b lo od's a m azin gly m ag ic al, b ut y ou w ould n't w an t
a d ra g on f o r a p et, w ould y ou?”
Harry an d R on g rin ned at H ag rid , w ho g av e th em a fu rtiv e sm ile fro m

beh in d h is b ush y b eard . H ag rid w ould h av e lik ed n oth in g b ette r th an a p et
dra g on, a s H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne k new o nly to o w ell— he h ad o w ned o ne
fo r a b rie f p erio d d urin g th eir f ir s t y ear, a v ic io us N orw eg ia n R id geb ack b y th e
nam e o f N orb ert. H ag rid s im ply lo ved m onstr o us c re atu re s, th e m ore le th al, th e
bette r.
“W ell, a t l e ast t h e s k re w ts a re s m all,” s a id R on a s t h ey m ad e t h eir w ay b ack
up t o t h e c astle f o r l u nch a n h our l a te r.
“T hey a re n ow ,” s a id H erm io ne i n a n e x asp era te d v oic e, “ b ut o nce H ag rid 's
fo und o ut w hat t h ey e at, I e x pect t h ey 'l l b e s ix f e et l o ng.”
“W ell, th at w on't m atte r if th ey tu rn o ut to c u re s e asic k ness o r s o m eth in g,
will i t? ” s a id R on, g rin nin g s ly ly a t h er.
“Y ou know perfe ctly w ell I only sa id th at to sh ut M alf o y up,” sa id
Herm io ne. “ A s a m atte r o f f a ct I th in k h e's r ig ht. T he b est th in g to d o w ould b e
to s ta m p o n t h e l o t o f t h em b efo re t h ey s ta rt a tta ck in g u s a ll.”
They s a t d ow n a t t h e G ry ff in dor t a b le a n d h elp ed t h em se lv es t o l a m b c h ops
an d p ota to es. H erm io ne b eg an t o e at s o f a st t h at H arry a n d R on s ta re d a t h er.
“E r— is th is th e n ew s ta n d o n e lf r ig hts ? ” s a id R on. “ Y ou'r e g oin g to m ak e
yours e lf p uke i n ste ad ?”
“N o,” s a id H erm io ne, w ith a s m uch d ig nity a s s h e c o uld m uste r w ith h er
mouth b ulg in g w ith s p ro uts . “ I j u st w an t t o g et t o t h e l ib ra ry .”
“W hat? ” sa id R on in d is b elie f. “H erm io ne— it's th e fir s t d ay b ack ! W e
hav en 't e v en g ot h om ew ork y et! ”
Herm io ne s h ru gged a n d c o ntin ued to s h ovel d ow n h er fo od a s th ough s h e
had n ot e ate n f o r d ay s. T hen s h e le ap t to h er f e et, s a id , “ S ee y ou a t d in ner!” a n d
dep arte d a t h ig h s p eed .
When th e b ell r a n g to s ig nal th e s ta rt o f a fte rn oon le sso ns, H arry a n d R on
se t o ff f o r N orth T ow er w here , a t th e to p o f a tig htly s p ir a lin g s ta ir c ase , a s ilv er
ste p la d der l e d t o a c ir c u la r t r a p door i n t h e c eilin g, a n d t h e r o om w here P ro fe sso r
Tre la w ney l iv ed .
The fa m ilia r sw eet p erfu m e sp re ad in g fro m th e fir e m et th eir n ostr ils a s
th ey e m erg ed a t th e to p o f th e s te p la d der. A s e v er, th e c u rta in s w ere a ll c lo se d ;
th e c ir c u la r ro om w as b ath ed in a d im re d dis h lig ht c ast b y th e m an y la m ps,
whic h w ere a ll d ra p ed w ith s c arv es a n d s h aw ls . H arry a n d R on w alk ed th ro ugh
th e m ass o f o ccu pie d c h in tz c h air s a n d p oufs th at c lu tte re d th e ro om , a n d sa t
dow n a t t h e s a m e s m all c ir c u la r t a b le .
“G ood day,” sa id th e m is ty voic e of P ro fe sso r T re la w ney rig ht beh in d
Harry , m ak in g h im j u m p.
A v ery th in w om an w ith e n orm ous g la sse s th at m ad e h er e y es a p pear fa r
to o la rg e f o r h er f a ce, P ro fe sso r T re la w ney w as p eerin g d ow n a t H arry w ith th e

tr a g ic ex pre ssio n sh e alw ay s w ore w hen ev er sh e sa w him . T he usu al la rg e
am ount o f b ead s, c h ain s, a n d b an gle s g litte re d u pon h er p ers o n i n t h e f ir e lig ht.
“Y ou a re p re o ccu pie d , m y d ear,” s h e s a id m ourn fu lly to H arry . “ M y in ner
ey e s e es p ast y our b ra v e f a ce t o t h e t r o uble d s o ul w ith in . A nd I r e g re t t o s a y t h at
your w orrie s a re n ot b ase le ss. I s e e d if f ic u lt tim es a h ead fo r y ou, a la s… m ost
dif f ic u lt… I fe ar th e th in g y ou d re ad w ill in deed c o m e to p ass… a n d p erh ap s
so oner t h an y ou t h in k… ”
Her v oic e d ro pped a lm ost to a w his p er. R on ro lle d h is e y es a t H arry , w ho
lo oked s to nily b ack . P ro fe sso r T re la w ney s w ep t p ast t h em a n d s e ate d h ers e lf i n a
la rg e w in ged a rm ch air b efo re th e fir e , fa cin g th e c la ss. L av en der B ro w n a n d
Parv ati P atil, w ho d eep ly a d m ir e d P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, w ere sittin g o n p oufs
very c lo se t o h er.
“M y d ears , i t i s t im e f o r u s t o c o nsid er t h e s ta rs ,” s h e s a id . “ T he m ovem en ts
of th e pla n ets an d th e m yste rio us porte n ts th ey re v eal only to th ose w ho
unders ta n d t h e s te p s o f t h e c ele stia l d an ce. H um an d estin y m ay b e d ecip here d b y
th e p la n eta ry r a y s, w hic h i n te rm in gle … ”
But H arry 's th oughts h ad d rif te d . T he p erfu m ed f ir e a lw ay s m ad e h im f e el
sle ep y an d d ull- w itte d , an d P ro fe sso r T re la w ney 's ra m blin g ta lk s o n fo rtu ne-
te llin g n ev er h eld h im ex actly sp ellb ound— th ough h e co uld n't h elp th in kin g
ab out w hat s h e h ad j u st s a id t o h im . “ I f e ar t h e t h in g y ou d re ad w ill i n deed c o m e
to p ass… '”
But H erm io ne w as r ig ht, H arry t h ought i r rita b ly , P ro fe sso r T re la w ney r e ally
was a n o ld fra u d. H e w asn 't d re ad in g a n yth in g a t th e m om en t a t a ll… w ell,
unle ss you co unte d his fe ars th at Sir iu s had been cau ght… but w hat did
Pro fe sso r T re la w ney k now ? H e h ad lo ng s in ce c o m e to th e c o nclu sio n th at h er
bra n d o f fo rtu nete llin g w as re ally n o m ore th an lu ck y g uessw ork a n d a s p ooky
man ner.
Excep t, o f c o urs e , f o r th at tim e a t th e e n d o f la st te rm , w hen s h e h ad m ad e
th e p re d ic tio n a b out V old em ort r is in g a g ain … a n d D um ble d ore h im se lf h ad s a id
th at h e th ought th at tr a n ce h ad b een g en uin e, w hen H arry h ad d esc rib ed it to
him .
“H arry !” R on m utte re d .
“W hat? ”
Harry l o oked a ro und; t h e w hole c la ss w as s ta rin g a t h im . H e s a t u p s tr a ig ht;
he h ad b een a lm ost d ozin g o ff , l o st i n t h e h eat a n d h is t h oughts .
“I w as sa y in g, m y dear, th at you w ere cle arly born under th e bale fu l
in flu en ce o f S atu rn ,” s a id P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, a f a in t n ote o f r e se n tm en t in h er
voic e a t t h e f a ct t h at h e h ad o bvio usly n ot b een h an gin g o n h er w ord s.
“B orn u nder— what, s o rry ?” s a id H arry .

“S atu rn , dear, th e pla n et Satu rn !” sa id Pro fe sso r Tre la w ney, so undin g
defin ite ly ir rita te d th at h e w asn 't r iv ete d b y th is n ew s. “ I w as s a y in g th at S atu rn
was s u re ly in a p ositio n o f p ow er in th e h eav en s a t th e m om en t o f y our b ir th …
Your d ark h air … y our m ean s ta tu re … tr a g ic lo sse s s o y oung in lif e … I th in k I
am r ig ht i n s a y in g, m y d ear, t h at y ou w ere b orn i n m id w in te r? ”
“N o,” s a id H arry , “ I w as b orn i n J u ly .”
Ron h astily t u rn ed h is l a u gh i n to a h ack in g c o ugh.
Half an h our la te r, each o f th em h ad b een g iv en a co m plic ate d cir c u la r
ch art, a n d w as a tte m ptin g to f ill in th e p ositio n o f th e p la n ets a t th eir m om en t o f
bir th . I t w as d ull w ork , r e q uir in g m uch c o nsu lta tio n o f t im eta b le s a n d c alc u la tio n
of a n gle s.
“I'v e g ot tw o N ep tu nes h ere ,” s a id H arry a fte r a w hile , fro w nin g d ow n a t
his p ie ce o f p arc h m en t, “ th at c an 't b e r ig ht, c an i t? ”
“A aaaah ,” sa id R on, im ita tin g P ro fe sso r T re la w ney 's m ystic al w his p er,
“w hen t w o N ep tu nes a p pear i n t h e s k y, i t i s a s u re s ig n t h at a m id get i n g la sse s i s
bein g b orn , H arry … ”
Seam us a n d D ean , w ho w ere w ork in g n earb y, s n ig gere d lo udly , th ough n ot
lo udly en ough to m ask th e ex cite d sq ueals fro m Lav en der B ro w n— ”O h
Pro fe sso r, lo ok! I th in k I'v e g ot a n u nasp ecte d p la n et! O ooh, w hic h o ne's th at,
Pro fe sso r? ”
“It is U ra n us, m y d ear,” sa id P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, p eerin g d ow n at th e
ch art.
“C an I h av e a l o ok a t U ra n us t o o, L av en der? ” s a id R on.
Most unfo rtu nate ly , Pro fe sso r Tre la w ney heard him , an d it w as th is ,
perh ap s, t h at m ad e h er g iv e t h em s o m uch h om ew ork a t t h e e n d o f t h e c la ss.
“A d eta ile d a n aly sis o f th e w ay th e p la n eta ry m ovem en ts in th e c o m in g
month w ill aff e ct y ou, w ith re fe re n ce to y our p ers o nal ch art,” sh e sn ap ped ,
so undin g m uch m ore l ik e P ro fe sso r M cG onag all t h an h er u su al a ir y -fa ir y s e lf . “ I
wan t i t r e ad y t o h an d i n n ex t M onday, a n d n o e x cu se s!”
“M is e ra b le o ld b at,” s a id R on b itte rly a s t h ey j o in ed t h e c ro w ds d esc en din g
th e s ta ir c ase s b ack to th e G re at H all a n d d in ner. “ T hat'l l ta k e a ll w eek en d, th at
will… ”
“L ots of hom ew ork ?” sa id H erm io ne brig htly , catc h in g up w ith th em .
“P ro fe sso r V ecto r d id n't g iv e u s a n y a t a ll! ”
“W ell, b ully f o r P ro fe sso r V ecto r,” s a id R on m oodily .
They r e ach ed th e e n tr a n ce h all, w hic h w as p ack ed w ith p eo ple q ueu in g f o r
din ner. T hey h ad ju st jo in ed th e e n d o f th e lin e, w hen a lo ud v oic e ra n g o ut
beh in d t h em .
“W easle y ! H ey, W easle y !”

Harry , R on, an d H erm io ne tu rn ed . M alf o y, C ra b be, an d G oyle w ere
sta n din g t h ere , e ach l o okin g t h oro ughly p le ase d a b out s o m eth in g.
“W hat? ” s a id R on s h ortly .
“Y our d ad 's in th e p ap er, W easle y !” s a id M alf o y, b ra n dis h in g a c o py o f th e
Daily P ro phet a n d s p eak in g v ery lo udly , s o th at e v ery one in th e p ack ed e n tr a n ce
hall c o uld h ear. “ L is te n t o t h is !
FU RT H ER M IS TA KES A T T H E M IN IS T R Y O F M AGIC
It s e em s a s th ough th e M in is tr y o f M ag ic 's tr o uble s a re n ot y et a t a n e n d,
write s R ita S keete r, S pecia l C orre sp onden t. R ecen tly u nder f ir e f o r i ts p oor
cro w d c o ntr o l a t th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, a n d s till u nab le to a cco unt fo r
th e d is a p peara n ce o f o ne o f its w itc h es, th e M in is tr y w as p lu nged in to fre sh
em barra ssm en t y este rd ay b y th e an tic s o f A rn old W easle y, o f th e M is u se o f
Muggle A rtif a cts O ff ic e.”
Malf o y l o oked u p.
“Im ag in e th em n ot ev en g ettin g h is n am e rig ht, W easle y. It's alm ost as
th ough h e's a c o m ple te n onen tity , i s n 't i t? ” h e c ro w ed .
Every one in th e e n tr a n ce h all w as lis te n in g n ow . M alf o y s tr a ig hte n ed th e
pap er w ith a f lo uris h a n d r e ad o n:
Arn old W easle y, w ho w as c h arg ed w ith p osse ssio n o f a f ly in g c ar t w o y ears
ag o, w as yeste rd ay in volv ed in a tu ssle w ith se v era l M uggle la w -k eep ers
(“ p olic em en ”) over a num ber of hig hly ag gre ssiv e dustb in s. M r. W easle y
ap pears to h av e r u sh ed to th e a id o f “ M ad -E ye” M oody, th e a g ed e x -A uro r w ho
re tir e d fro m th e M in is tr y w hen n o lo nger a b le to te ll th e d if f e re n ce b etw een a
han dsh ak e an d atte m pte d m urd er. U nsu rp ris in gly , M r. W easle y fo und, upon
arriv al a t M r. M oody's h eav ily g uard ed h ouse , th at M r. M oody h ad o nce a g ain
ra is e d a f a ls e a la rm . M r. W easle y w as f o rc ed to m odif y s e v era l m em orie s b efo re
he co uld esc ap e fro m th e polic em en , but re fu se d to an sw er D aily P ro phet
questio ns a b out w hy h e h ad in volv ed th e M in is tr y in s u ch a n u ndig nif ie d a n d
pote n tia lly e m barra ssin g s c en e.
“A nd th ere 's a p ic tu re , W easle y !” s a id M alf o y, f lip pin g th e p ap er o ver a n d
hold in g it u p. “ A p ic tu re o f y our p are n ts o uts id e th eir h ouse — if y ou c an c all it a
house ! Y our m oth er c o uld d o w ith l o sin g a b it o f w eig ht, c o uld n't s h e?”
Ron w as s h ak in g w ith f u ry . E very one w as s ta rin g a t h im .
“G et s tu ff e d , M alf o y,” s a id H arry . “ C 'm on, R on… ”
“O h y eah , y ou w ere s ta y in g w ith th em th is s u m mer, w ere n 't y ou, P otte r? ”
sn eere d M alf o y. “ S o te ll m e, is h is m oth er re ally th at p ork y, o r is it ju st th e
pic tu re ?”
“Y ou k now y our m oth er, M alf o y?” s a id H arry — both h e a n d H erm io ne h ad
gra b bed th e b ack o f R on's ro bes to s to p h im fro m la u nch in g h im se lf a t M alf o y

—”th at e x pre ssio n s h e's g ot, lik e s h e's g ot d ung u nder h er n ose ? H as s h e a lw ay s
lo oked l ik e t h at, o r w as i t j u st b ecau se y ou w ere w ith h er? ”
Malf o y's p ale f a ce w en t s lig htly p in k.
“D on't y ou d are i n su lt m y m oth er, P otte r.”
“K eep y our f a t m outh s h ut, t h en ,” s a id H arry , t u rn in g a w ay.
BA NG!
Sev era l p eo ple s c re am ed — Harry f e lt s o m eth in g w hite -h ot g ra ze th e s id e o f
his f a ce— he p lu nged h is h an d in to h is r o bes f o r h is w an d, b ut b efo re h e'd e v en
to uch ed it, h e h eard a s e co nd lo ud B A NG, a n d a ro ar th at e ch oed th ro ugh th e
en tr a n ce h all.
“O H N O Y OU D ON'T , L A DDIE !”
Harry sp un aro und. Pro fe sso r M oody w as lim pin g dow n th e m arb le
sta ir c ase . H is w an d w as o ut a n d it w as p oin tin g rig ht a t a p ure w hite fe rre t,
whic h w as s h iv erin g o n th e s to ne-fla g ged f lo or, e x actly w here M alf o y h ad b een
sta n din g.
There w as a te rrif ie d s ile n ce in th e e n tr a n ce h all. N obody b ut M oody w as
movin g a m usc le . M oody tu rn ed to lo ok a t H arry — at le ast, h is n orm al e y e w as
lo okin g a t H arry ; t h e o th er o ne w as p oin tin g i n to t h e b ack o f h is h ead .
“D id h e g et y ou?” M oody g ro w le d . H is v oic e w as l o w a n d g ra v elly .
“N o,” s a id H arry , “ m is se d .”
“L EAV E I T !” M oody s h oute d .
“L eav e— what? ” H arry s a id , b ew ild ere d .
“N ot y ou— him !” M oody g ro w le d , je rk in g h is th um b o ver h is s h ould er a t
Cra b be, w ho h ad ju st fro zen , a b out to p ic k u p th e w hite fe rre t. It s e em ed th at
Moody's r o llin g e y e w as m ag ic al a n d c o uld s e e o ut o f t h e b ack o f h is h ead .
Moody s ta rte d to lim p to w ard C ra b be, G oyle , a n d th e f e rre t, w hic h g av e a
te rrif ie d s q ueak a n d t o ok o ff , s tr e ak in g t o w ard t h e d ungeo ns.
“I d on't th in k s o !” r o are d M oody, p oin tin g h is w an d a t th e f e rre t a g ain — it
fle w t e n f e et i n to t h e a ir , f e ll w ith a s m ack t o t h e f lo or, a n d t h en b ounced u pw ard
once m ore .
“I don't lik e peo ple w ho atta ck w hen th eir opponen t's back 's tu rn ed ,”
gro w le d M oody as th e fe rre t b ounced h ig her an d h ig her, sq uealin g in p ain .
“S tin kin g, c o w ard ly , s c u m my t h in g t o d o… ”
The f e rre t f le w t h ro ugh t h e a ir , i ts l e g s a n d t a il f la ilin g h elp le ssly .
“N ev er— do— th at— ag ain — ” s a id M oody, s p eak in g e ach w ord a s t h e f e rre t
hit t h e s to ne f lo or a n d b ounced u pw ard a g ain .
“P ro fe sso r M oody!” s a id a s h ock ed v oic e.
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all w as c o m in g d ow n t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase w ith h er a rm s
fu ll o f b ooks.

“H ello , P ro fe sso r M cG onag all,” sa id M oody calm ly , b ouncin g th e fe rre t
still h ig her.
“W hat— what are you doin g?” sa id Pro fe sso r M cG onag all, her ey es
fo llo w in g t h e b ouncin g f e rre t's p ro gre ss t h ro ugh t h e a ir.
“T each in g,” s a id M oody.
“T each — Moody, is th at a stu den t? ” sh rie k ed P ro fe sso r M cG onag all, th e
books s p illin g o ut o f h er a rm s.
“Y ep ,” s a id M oody.
“N o!” c rie d P ro fe sso r M cG onag all, r u nnin g d ow n th e s ta ir s a n d p ullin g o ut
her w an d; a m om en t la te r, w ith a lo ud sn ap pin g nois e , D ra co M alf o y had
re ap peare d , l y in g i n a h eap o n t h e f lo or w ith h is s le ek b lo nd h air a ll o ver h is n ow
brillia n tly p in k f a ce. H e g ot t o h is f e et, w in cin g.
“M oody, w e n ev er u se T ra n sfig ura tio n a s a p unis h m en t! ” sa id P ro fe sso r
McG onag all w eald y. “ S ure ly P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore t o ld y ou t h at? ”
“H e m ig ht'v e m en tio ned it, yeah ,” sa id M oody, sc ra tc h in g his ch in
unco ncern ed ly , “ b ut I t h ought a g ood s h arp s h ock — ”
“W e g iv e d ete n tio ns, M oody! O r s p eak t o t h e o ff e n der's H ead o f H ouse !”
“I'l l d o t h at, t h en ,” s a id M oody, s ta rin g a t M alf o y w ith g re at d is lik e.
Malf o y, w hose p ale ey es w ere still w ate rin g w ith p ain an d h um ilia tio n,
lo oked m ale v ole n tly u p a t M oody a n d m utte re d s o m eth in g in w hic h th e w ord s
“m y f a th er” w ere d is tin guis h ab le .
“O h y eah ?” s a id M oody q uie tly , l im pin g f o rw ard a f e w s te p s, t h e d ull c lu nk
of h is w ooden le g e ch oin g a ro und th e h all. “ W ell, I k now y our fa th er o f o ld ,
boy… Y ou te ll h im M oody's k eep in g a c lo se e y e o n h is s o n… y ou te ll h im th at
fro m m e… N ow , y our H ead o f H ouse 'l l b e S nap e, w ill i t? ”
“Y es,” s a id M alf o y r e se n tf u lly .
“A noth er o ld f rie n d,” g ro w le d M oody. “ I'v e b een lo okin g f o rw ard to a c h at
with o ld S nap e… C om e o n, y ou… ”
And he se iz ed M alf o y's upper arm an d m arc h ed him off to w ard th e
dungeo ns.
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all s ta re d a n xio usly a fte r th em f o r a f e w m om en ts , th en
wav ed h er w an d a t h er fa lle n b ooks, c au sin g th em to s o ar u p in to th e a ir a n d
back i n to h er a rm s.
“D on't ta lk to m e,” R on sa id q uie tly to H arry a n d H erm io ne a s th ey sa t
dow n a t th e G ry ff in dor ta b le a f e w m in ute s la te r, s u rro unded b y e x cite d ta lk o n
all s id es a b out w hat h ad j u st h ap pen ed .
“W hy n ot? ” s a id H erm io ne i n s u rp ris e .
“B ecau se I w an t to fix th at in m y m em ory fo re v er,” sa id R on, h is e y es
clo se d an d an u plif te d ex pre ssio n o n h is fa ce. “D ra co M alf o y, th e am azin g

bouncin g f e rre t.”
Harry an d H erm io ne both la u ghed , an d H erm io ne beg an dolin g beef
casse ro le o nto e ach o f t h eir p la te s.
“H e c o uld h av e r e ally h urt M alf o y, th ough,” s h e s a id . “ It w as g ood, r e ally ,
th at P ro fe sso r M cG onag all s to pped i t— ”
“H erm io ne!” sa id R on fu rio usly , h is ey es sn ap pin g o pen ag ain , “y ou'r e
ru in in g t h e b est m om en t o f m y l if e !”
Herm io ne m ad e a n i m patie n t n ois e a n d b eg an t o e at a t t o p s p eed a g ain .
“D on't te ll m e y ou'r e g oin g b ack to th e lib ra ry th is e v en in g?” s a id H arry ,
watc h in g h er.
“G ot t o ,” s a id H erm io ne t h ic k ly . “ L oad s t o d o.”
“B ut y ou t o ld u s P ro fe sso r V ecto r— ”
“It's n ot sc h oolw ork ,” sh e sa id . W ith in fiv e m in ute s, sh e h ad c le are d h er
pla te a n d d ep arte d . N o so oner h ad sh e g one th an h er se at w as ta k en b y F re d
Weasle y.
“M oody!” h e s a id . “ H ow c o ol i s h e?”
“B ey ond c o ol,” s a id G eo rg e, s ittin g d ow n o pposite F re d . “ S uperc o ol,” s a id
th e tw in s' b est f rie n d, L ee J o rd an , s lid in g in to th e s e at b esid e G eo rg e. “ W e h ad
him t h is a fte rn oon,” h e t o ld H arry a n d R on.
“W hat w as i t l ik e?” s a id H arry e ag erly .
Fre d , G eo rg e, a n d L ee e x ch an ged l o oks f u ll o f m ean in g.
“N ev er h ad a l e sso n l ik e i t,” s a id F re d .
“H e k now s, m an ,” s a id L ee.
“K now s w hat? ” s a id R on, l e an in g f o rw ard .
“K now s w hat i t's l ik e t o b e o ut t h ere d oin g i t,” s a id G eo rg e i m pre ssiv ely .
“D oin g w hat? ” s a id H arry .
“F ig htin g t h e D ark A rts ,” s a id F re d .
“H e's s e en i t a ll,” s a id G eo rg e.
“M azin g,” s a id L ee.
Ron d iv ed i n to h is b ag f o r h is s c h ed ule .
“W e h av en 't g ot h im t ill T hurs d ay !” h e s a id i n a d is a p poin te d v oic e.

C H APT ER F O URTEEN
T H E U NFO RG IV A BLE C URSE S
The nex t tw o day s passe d w ith out gre at in cid en t, unle ss you co unte d
N ev ille m eltin g h is s ix th c au ld ro n in P otio ns. P ro fe sso r S nap e, w ho s e em ed to
h av e atta in ed new le v els of vin dic tiv en ess over th e su m mer, gav e N ev ih le
d ete n tio n, a n d N ev ille re tu rn ed fro m it in a sta te o f n erv ous c o lla p se , h av in g
b een m ad e t o d is e m bow el a b arre l f u ll o f h orn ed t o ad s.
“Y ou k now w hy S nap e's i n s u ch a f o ul m ood, d on't y ou?” s a id R on t o H arry
a s th ey w atc h ed H erm io ne te ach in g N ev ille a S co urin g C harm to re m ove th e
f ro g g uts f ro m u nder h is f in gern ails .
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry . “ M oody.”
It w as c o m mon k now le d ge th at S nap e r e ally w an te d th e D ark A rts jo b, a n d
h e h ad n ow f a ile d to g et it f o r th e f o urth y ear r u nnin g. S nap e h ad d is lik ed a ll o f
t h eir p re v io us D ark A rts te ach ers , a n d s h ow n it— but h e s e em ed s tr a n gely w ary
o f d is p la y in g o vert a n im osity to M ad -E ye M oody. I n deed , w hen ev er H arry s a w
t h e tw o o f th em to geth er— at m ealtim es, o r w hen th ey p asse d in th e c o rrid ors —
h e h ad th e d is tin ct im pre ssio n th at S nap e w as a v oid in g M oody's e y e, w heth er
m ag ic al o r n orm al.
“I r e ck on S nap e's a b it s c are d o f h im , y ou k now ,” H arry s a id t h oughtf u lly .
“Im ag in e if M oody tu rn ed S nap e in to a h orn ed to ad ,” s a id R on, h is e y es
m is tin g o ver, “ an d b ounced h im a ll a ro und h is d ungeo n… ”
The G ry ff in dor fo urth y ears w ere lo okin g fo rw ard to M oody's fir s t le sso n
s o m uch th at th ey a rriv ed e arly o n T hurs d ay lu nch tim e a n d q ueu ed u p o uts id e
h is cla ssro om b efo re th e b ell h ad ev en ru ng. T he o nly p ers o n m is sin g w as
H erm io ne, w ho t u rn ed u p j u st i n t im e f o r t h e l e sso n.
“B een i n t h e— ”
“L ib ra ry .” H arry f in is h ed h er s e n te n ce f o r h er. “ C 'm on, q uic k , o r w e w on't
g et d ecen t s e ats .”
They h urrie d in to th re e c h air s rig ht in fro nt o f th e te ach er's d esk , to ok o ut
t h eir co pie s of T he D ark Forc es: A G uid e to Self -P ro te ctio n, an d w aite d ,
u nusu ally q uie t. S oon th ey h eard M oody's d is tin ctiv e c lu nkin g f o ots te p s c o m in g
d ow n th e c o rrid or, a n d h e e n te re d th e ro om , lo okin g a s s tr a n ge a n d frig hte n in g
a s e v er. T hey c o uld j u st s e e h is c la w ed , w ooden f o ot p ro tr u din g f ro m u ndern eath
h is r o bes.
“Y ou can p ut th ose aw ay,” h e g ro w le d , stu m pin g o ver to h is d esk an d
s ittin g d ow n, “ th ose b ooks. Y ou w on't n eed t h em .”

They r e tu rn ed t h e b ooks t o t h eir b ag s, R on l o okin g e x cite d .
Moody to ok o ut a r e g is te r, s h ook h is lo ng m an e o f g riz zle d g ra y h air o ut o f
his t w is te d a n d s c arre d f a ce, a n d b eg an t o c all o ut n am es, h is n orm al e y e m ovin g
ste ad ily d ow n th e lis t w hile h is m ag ic al e y e s w iv ele d a ro und, f ix in g u pon e ach
stu den t a s h e o r s h e a n sw ere d .
“R ig ht t h en ,” h e s a id , w hen t h e l a st p ers o n h ad d ecla re d t h em se lv es p re se n t,
“I'v e h ad a le tte r fro m P ro fe sso r L upin a b out th is c la ss. S eem s y ou'v e h ad a
pre tty th oro ugh g ro undin g in ta ck lin g D ark c re atu re s— you'v e c o vere d b oggarts ,
Red C ap s, h in kypunks, g rin dylo w s, K ap pas, a n d w ere w olv es, i s t h at r ig ht? ”
There w as a g en era l m urm ur o f a sse n t.
“B ut y ou'r e b eh in d— very b eh in d— on d ealin g w ith c u rs e s,” sa id M oody.
“S o I'm h ere to b rin g y ou u p to s c ra tc h o n w hat w iz ard s c an d o to e ach o th er.
I'v e g ot o ne y ear t o t e ach y ou h ow t o d eal w ith D ark — ”
“W hat, a re n 't y ou s ta y in g?” R on b lu rte d o ut.
Moody's m ag ic al e y e s p un a ro und to s ta re a t R on; R on lo oked e x tr e m ely
ap pre h en siv e, b ut a fte r a m om en t M oody s m ile d — th e f ir s t tim e H arry h ad s e en
him d o s o . T he e ff e ct w as to m ak e h is h eav ily s c arre d fa ce lo ok m ore tw is te d
an d c o nto rte d th an e v er, b ut it w as n ev erth ele ss g ood to k now th at h e e v er d id
an yth in g a s f rie n dly a s s m ile . R on l o oked d eep ly r e lie v ed .
“Y ou'l l b e A rth ur W easle y 's s o n, e h ?” M oody s a id . “ Y our f a th er g ot m e o ut
of a v ery tig ht c o rn er a fe w d ay s a g o… Y eah , I'm sta y in g ju st th e o ne y ear.
Specia l f a v or t o D um ble d ore … O ne y ear, a n d t h en b ack t o m y q uie t r e tir e m en t.”
He g av e a h ars h l a u gh, a n d t h en c la p ped h is g narle d h an ds t o geth er.
“S o— str a ig ht in to it. C urs e s. T hey co m e in m an y str e n gth s an d fo rm s.
Now , acco rd in g to th e M in is tr y of M ag ic , I'm su ppose d to te ach you
co unte rc u rs e s a n d le av e it a t th at. I'm n ot su ppose d to sh ow y ou w hat ille g al
Dark c u rs e s l o ok l ik e u ntil y ou'r e i n t h e s ix th y ear. Y ou'r e n ot s u ppose d t o b e o ld
en ough t o d eal w ith i t t ill t h en . B ut P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore 's g ot a h ig her o pin io n
of y our n erv es, h e re ck ons y ou c an c o pe, a n d I s a y, th e s o oner y ou k now w hat
you'r e u p a g ain st, th e b ette r. H ow a re y ou s u ppose d to d efe n d y ours e lf a g ain st
so m eth in g y ou'v e n ev er s e en ? A w iz ard w ho's a b out to p ut a n ille g al c u rs e o n
you is n 't g oin g to te ll y ou w hat h e's a b out to d o. H e's n ot g oin g to d o it n ic e a n d
polite to y our f a ce. Y ou n eed to b e p re p are d . Y ou n eed to b e a le rt a n d w atc h fu l.
You n eed t o p ut t h at a w ay, M is s B ro w n, w hen I 'm t a lk in g.”
Lav en der ju m ped an d blu sh ed . She had been sh ow in g Parv ati her
co m ple te d h oro sc o pe u nder t h e d esk . A ppare n tly M oody's m ag ic al e y e c o uld s e e
th ro ugh s o lid w ood, a s w ell a s o ut o f t h e b ack o f h is h ead .
“S o… d o a n y o f y ou k now w hic h c u rs e s a re m ost h eav ily p unis h ed b y
wiz ard in g l a w ?”

Sev era l h an ds r o se te n ta tiv ely in to th e a ir , in clu din g R on's a n d H erm io ne's .
Moody p oin te d a t R on, t h ough h is m ag ic al e y e w as s till f ix ed o n L av en der.
“E r,” sa id R on te n ta tiv ely , “ m y d ad to ld m e a b out o ne… Is it c alle d th e
Im periu s C urs e , o r s o m eth in g?”
“A h, y es,” s a id M oody a p pre cia tiv ely . “ Y our fa th er w ould k now th at o ne.
Gav e t h e M in is tr y a l o t o f t r o uble a t o ne t im e, t h e I m periu s C urs e .”
Moody g ot h eav ily to h is m is m atc h ed fe et, o pen ed h is d esk d ra w er, a n d
to ok o ut a g la ss ja r. T hre e la rg e b la ck s p id ers w ere s c u ttlin g a ro und in sid e it.
Harry f e lt R on r e co il s lig htly n ex t t o h im — Ron h ate d s p id ers .
Moody re ach ed in to th e ja r, c au ght o ne o f th e sp id ers , a n d h eld it in th e
palm o f h is h an d s o th at th ey c o uld a ll s e e it. H e th en p oin te d h is w an d a t it a n d
mutte re d , “ Im perio !”
The s p id er le ap t fro m M oody's h an d o n a fin e th re ad o f s ilk a n d b eg an to
sw in g b ack w ard a n d fo rw ard a s th ough o n a tr a p eze. It str e tc h ed o ut its le g s
rig id ly , th en d id a b ack f lip , b re ak in g th e th re ad a n d la n din g o n th e d esk , w here
it b eg an t o c artw heel i n c ir c le s. M oody j e rk ed h is w an d, a n d t h e s p id er r o se o nto
tw o o f i ts h in d l e g s a n d w en t i n to w hat w as u nm is ta k ab ly a t a p d an ce.
Every one w as l a u ghin g— ev ery one e x cep t M oody.
“T hin k i t's f u nny, d o y ou?” h e g ro w le d . “ Y ou'd l ik e i t, w ould y ou, i f I d id i t
to y ou?”
The l a u ghte r d ie d a w ay a lm ost i n sta n tly .
“T ota l c o ntr o l,” s a id M oody q uie tly a s th e s p id er b alle d its e lf u p a n d b eg an
to ro ll o ver a n d o ver. “ I c o uld m ak e it ju m p o ut o f th e w in dow , d ro w n its e lf ,
th ro w i ts e lf d ow n o ne o f y our t h ro ats … ”
Ron g av e a n i n volu nta ry s h udder.
“Y ears b ack , t h ere w ere a l o t o f w itc h es a n d w iz ard s b ein g c o ntr o lle d b y t h e
Im periu s C urs e ,” s a id M oody, a n d H arry k new h e w as ta lk in g a b out th e d ay s in
whic h V old em ort h ad b een a ll- p ow erfu l. “ S om e jo b fo r th e M in is tr y , tr y in g to
so rt o ut w ho w as b ein g f o rc ed t o a ct, a n d w ho w as a ctin g o f t h eir o w n f re e w ill.
“T he Im periu s C urs e c an b e fo ught, a n d I'l l b e te ach in g y ou h ow , b ut it
ta k es r e al s tr e n gth o f c h ara cte r, a n d n ot e v ery one's g ot it. B ette r a v oid b ein g h it
with it if you can . C O NSTA NT V IG IL A NCE!” he bark ed , an d ev ery one
ju m ped .
Moody p ic k ed u p t h e s o m ers a u ltin g s p id er a n d t h re w i t b ack i n to t h e j a r.
“A nyone e ls e k now o ne? A noth er i lle g al c u rs e ?”
Herm io ne's h an d fle w in to th e a ir a g ain a n d s o , to H arry 's s lig ht s u rp ris e ,
did N ev ille 's . T he o nly c la ss in w hic h N ev ille u su ally v olu nte ere d in fo rm atio n
was H erb olo gy w hic h w as e asily h is b est s u bje ct. N ev ille l o oked s u rp ris e d a t h is
ow n d arin g.

“Y es? ” s a id M oody, h is m ag ic al e y e r o llin g r ig ht o ver t o f ix o n N ev ille .
“T here 's o ne— th e C ru cia tu s C urs e ,” sa id N ev ille in a sm all b ut d is tin ct
voic e.
Moody w as l o okin g v ery i n te n tly a t N ev ille , t h is t im e w ith b oth e y es.
“Y our n am e's L ongbotto m ?” h e sa id , h is m ag ic al e y e sw oopin g d ow n to
ch eck t h e r e g is te r a g ain .
Nev ille n odded n erv ously , b ut M oody m ad e n o fu rth er in quir ie s. T urn in g
back t o t h e c la ss a t l a rg e, h e r e ach ed i n to t h e j a r f o r t h e n ex t s p id er a n d p la ced i t
upon t h e d esk to p, w here i t r e m ain ed m otio nle ss, a p pare n tly t o o s c are d t o m ove.
“T he C ru cia tu s C urs e ,” s a id M oody. “ N eed s t o b e a b it b ig ger f o r y ou t o g et
th e i d ea,” h e s a id , p oin tin g h is w an d a t t h e s p id er. “ E ngorg io !”
The sp id er sw elle d . It w as n ow la rg er th an a ta ra n tu la . A ban donin g all
pre te n se , R on p ush ed h is c h air b ack w ard , a s fa r a w ay fro m M oody's d esk a s
possib le .
Moody ra is e d his w an d ag ain , poin te d it at th e sp id er, an d m utte re d ,
“C ru cio !”
At o nce, th e s p id er's le g s b en t in u pon its b ody; it r o lle d o ver a n d b eg an to
tw itc h h orrib ly , r o ck in g f ro m s id e t o s id e. N o s o und c am e f ro m i t, b ut H arry w as
su re th at if it c o uld h av e g iv en v oic e, it w ould h av e b een s c re am in g. M oody d id
not r e m ove h is w an d, a n d th e s p id er s ta rte d to s h udder a n d je rk m ore v io le n tly
—”S to p i t! ” H erm io ne s a id s h rilly .”
Harry lo oked aro und at h er. S he w as lo okin g, n ot at th e sp id er, b ut at
Nev ille , a n d H arry , fo llo w in g h er g aze, s a w th at N ev ille 's h an ds w ere c le n ch ed
upon t h e d esk i n f ro nt o f h im , h is k nuck le s w hite , h is e y es w id e a n d h orrif ie d .
Moody ra is e d his w an d. T he sp id er's le g s re la x ed , but it co ntin ued to
tw itc h .
“R ed ucio ,” M oody m utte re d , a n d th e s p id er s h ra n k b ack to its p ro per s iz e.
He p ut i t b ack i n to t h e j a r.
“P ain ,” sa id M oody so ftly . “Y ou don't need th um bsc re w s or kniv es to
to rtu re s o m eo ne if y ou c an p erfo rm th e C ru cia tu s C urs e … T hat o ne w as v ery
popula r o nce t o o.
“R ig ht… a n yone k now a n y o th ers ? ”
Harry lo oked a ro und. F ro m th e lo oks o n e v ery one's f a ces, h e g uesse d th ey
were a ll w onderin g w hat w as g oin g t o h ap pen t o t h e l a st s p id er. H erm io ne's h an d
sh ook s lig htly a s, f o r t h e t h ir d t im e, s h e r a is e d i t i n to t h e a ir.
“Y es? ” s a id M oody, l o okin g a t h er.
“A vad a K ed av ra ,” H erm io ne w his p ere d .
Sev era l p eo ple l o oked u neasily a ro und a t h er, i n clu din g R on.
“A h,” s a id M oody, a n oth er s lig ht s m ile tw is tin g h is lo psid ed m outh . “ Y es,

th e l a st a n d w ors t. A vad a K ed av ra … t h e K illin g C urs e .”
He p ut h is h an d in to th e g la ss ja r, a n d a lm ost a s th ough it k new w hat w as
co m in g, th e th ir d s p id er s c u ttle d f ra n tic ally a ro und th e b otto m o f th e ja r, tr y in g
to e v ad e M oody's fin gers , b ut h e tr a p ped it, a n d p la ced it u pon th e d esk to p. It
sta rte d t o s c u ttle f ra n tic ally a cro ss t h e w ooden s u rfa ce.
Moody r a is e d h is w an d, a n d H arry f e lt a s u dden t h rill o f f o re b odin g.
“A vad a K ed av ra !” M oody r o are d .
There w as a f la sh o f b lin din g g re en lig ht a n d a r u sh in g s o und, a s th ough a
vast, i n vis ib le s o m eth in g w as s o arin g t h ro ugh t h e a ir — in sta n ta n eo usly t h e s p id er
ro lle d o ver o nto its b ack , u nm ark ed , b ut u nm is ta k ab ly d ead . S ev era l o f th e
stu den ts s tif le d c rie s; R on h ad th ro w n h im se lf b ack w ard a n d a lm ost to pple d o ff
his s e at a s t h e s p id er s k id ded t o w ard h im .
Moody s w ep t t h e d ead s p id er o ff t h e d esk o nto t h e f lo or.
“N ot n ic e,” h e sa id calm ly . “N ot p le asa n t. A nd th ere 's n o co unte rc u rs e .
There 's n o b lo ck in g it. O nly o ne k now n p ers o n h as e v er su rv iv ed it, a n d h e's
sittin g r ig ht i n f ro nt o f m e.”
Harry fe lt h is fa ce re d den a s M oody's e y es (b oth o f th em ) lo oked in to h is
ow n. H e c o uld f e el e v ery one e ls e lo okin g a ro und a t h im to o. H arry s ta re d a t th e
bla n k b la ck board a s t h ough f a sc in ate d b y i t, b ut n ot r e ally s e ein g i t a t a ll…
So th at w as h ow h is p are n ts h ad d ie d … e x actly lik e th at s p id er. H ad th ey
been u nble m is h ed a n d u nm ark ed to o? H ad th ey s im ply s e en th e fla sh o f g re en
lig ht a n d h eard th e ru sh o f sp eed in g d eath , b efo re lif e w as w ip ed fro m th eir
bodie s?
Harry h ad b een p ic tu rin g h is p are n ts ' d eath s o ver a n d o ver a g ain fo r th re e
years n ow , e v er s in ce h e'd fo und o ut th ey h ad b een m urd ere d , e v er s in ce h e'd
fo und o ut w hat h ad h ap pen ed th at n ig ht: W orm ta il h ad b etr a y ed h is p are n ts '
where ab outs to V old em ort, w ho h ad c o m e to fin d th em a t th eir c o tta g e. H ow
Vold em ort h ad k ille d H arry 's f a th er f ir s t. H ow J a m es P otte r h ad t r ie d t o h old h im
off , w hile he sh oute d at his w if e to ta k e H arry an d ru n… V old em ort had
ad van ced o n L ily P otte r, to ld h er to m ove a sid e s o th at h e c o uld k ill H arry …
how s h e h ad b eg ged h im to k ill h er in ste ad , r e fu se d to s to p s h ie ld in g h er s o n…
an d s o V old em ort h ad m urd ere d h er t o o, b efo re t u rn in g h is w an d o n H arry .
Harry k new th ese d eta ils b ecau se h e h ad h eard h is p are n ts ' v oic es w hen h e
had fo ught th e dem en to rs la st year— fo r th at w as th e te rrib le pow er of th e
dem en to rs : to f o rc e th eir v ic tim s to r e liv e th e w ors t m em orie s o f th eir liv es, a n d
dro w n, p ow erle ss, i n t h eir o w n d esp air.
Moody w as s p eak in g a g ain , f ro m a g re at d is ta n ce, it s e em ed to H arry . W ith
a m assiv e eff o rt, h e p ulle d h im se lf b ack to th e p re se n t an d lis te n ed to w hat
Moody w as s a y in g.

“A vad a K ed av ra 's a c u rs e t h at n eed s a p ow erfu l b it o f m ag ic b eh in d i t— you
co uld a ll g et y our w an ds o ut n ow a n d p oin t th em a t m e a n d s a y th e w ord s, a n d I
doubt I'd g et s o m uch a s a n ose b le ed . B ut th at d oesn 't m atte r. I'm n ot h ere to
te ach y ou h ow t o d o i t.
“N ow , if th ere 's n o c o unte rc u rs e , w hy a m I s h ow in g y ou? B ecau se y ou'v e
got to k now . Y ou'v e g ot to a p pre cia te w hat th e w ors t is . Y ou d on't w an t to f in d
yours e lf in a situ atio n w here y ou'r e fa cin g it. C O NSTA NT V IG IL A NCE!” h e
ro are d , a n d t h e w hole c la ss j u m ped a g ain .
“N ow … th ose th re e c u rs e s— Avad a K ed av ra , I m periu s, a n d C ru cia tu s— are
know n a s th e U nfo rg iv ab le C urs e s. T he u se o f a n y o ne o f th em o n a fe llo w
hum an b ein g i s e n ough t o e arn a l if e s e n te n ce i n A zk ab an . T hat's w hat y ou'r e u p
ag ain st. T hat's w hat I 'v e g ot to te ach y ou to f ig ht. Y ou n eed p re p arin g. Y ou n eed
arm in g. B ut m ost o f a ll, y ou n eed to p ra ctic e c o nsta n t, n ev er- c easin g v ig ila n ce.
Get o ut y our q uills … c o py t h is d ow n… ”
They s p en t th e r e st o f th e le sso n ta k in g n ote s o n e ach o f th e U nfo rg iv ab le
Curs e s. N o o ne s p oke u ntil th e b ell r a n g— but w hen M oody h ad d is m is se d th em
an d th ey h ad le ft th e c la ssro om , a to rre n t o f ta lk b urs t fo rth . M ost p eo ple w ere
dis c u ssin g th e c u rs e s in a w ed v oic es— ”D id y ou s e e it tw itc h ?” “ an d w hen h e
kille d i t— ju st l ik e t h at! ”
They w ere ta lk in g a b out th e le sso n, H arry th ought, a s th ough it h ad b een
so m e s o rt o f s p ecta cu la r s h ow , b ut h e h ad n't f o und i t v ery e n te rta in in g— an d n or,
it s e em ed , h ad H erm io ne.
“H urry u p,” s h e s a id t e n se ly t o H arry a n d R on.
“N ot t h e r u ddy l ib ra ry a g ain ?” s a id R on.
“N o,” s a id H erm io ne c u rtly , p oin tin g u p a s id e p assa g e. “ N ev ille .” N ev ille
was s ta n din g a lo ne, h alf w ay u p th e p assa g e, s ta rin g a t th e s to ne w all o pposite
him w ith th e sa m e h orrif ie d , w id e-e y ed lo ok h e h ad w orn w hen M oody h ad
dem onstr a te d t h e C ru cia tu s C urs e .
“N ev ille ?” H erm io ne s a id g en tly .
Nev ille l o oked a ro und.
“O h h ello ,” h e s a id , h is v oic e m uch h ig her th an u su al. “ In te re stin g le sso n,
wasn 't i t? I w onder w hat's f o r d in ner, I 'm — I'm s ta rv in g, a re n 't y ou?”
“N ev ille , a re y ou a ll r ig ht? ” s a id H erm io ne.
“O h y es, I'm fin e,” N ev ille g ab ble d in th e sa m e u nnatu ra lly h ig h v oic e.
“V ery i n te re stin g d in ner— I m ean l e sso n— what's f o r e atin g?”
Ron g av e H arry a s ta rtle d l o ok.
“N ev ille , w hat— ?”
But a n o dd c lu nkin g n ois e so unded b eh in d th em , a n d th ey tu rn ed to se e
Pro fe sso r M oody lim pin g to w ard th em . A ll fo ur o f th em fe ll sile n t, w atc h in g

him a p pre h en siv ely , b ut w hen h e sp oke, it w as in a m uch lo w er a n d g en tle r
gro w l t h an t h ey h ad y et h eard .
“It's a ll rig ht, s o nny,” h e s a id to N ev ille . “ W hy d on't y ou c o m e u p to m y
off ic e? C om e o n… w e c an h av e a c u p o f t e a… ”
Nev ille lo oked e v en m ore f rig hte n ed a t th e p ro sp ect o f te a w ith M oody. H e
neith er m oved n or s p oke. M oody t u rn ed h is m ag ic al e y e u pon H arry .
“Y ou a ll r ig ht, a re y ou, P otte r? ”
“Y es,” s a id H arry , a lm ost d efia n tly .
Moody's b lu e e y e q uiv ere d s lig htly in its s o ck et a s it s u rv ey ed H arry . T hen
he s a id , “ Y ou'v e g ot t o k now . I t s e em s h ars h , m ay be, b ut y ou'v e g ot t o k now . N o
poin t p re te n din g… w ell… c o m e o n, L ongbotto m , I 'v e g ot s o m e b ooks t h at m ig ht
in te re st y ou.”
Nev ille lo oked p le ad in gly a t H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne, b ut th ey d id n't s a y
an yth in g, s o N ev ille h ad n o c h oic e b ut to a llo w h im se lf to b e s te ere d a w ay, o ne
of M oody's g narle d h an ds o n h is s h ould er.
“W hat w as th at a b out? ” sa id R on, w atc h in g N ev ille a n d M oody tu rn th e
co rn er.
“I d on't k now ,” s a id H erm io ne, l o okin g p en siv e.
“S om e le sso n, th ough, e h ?” s a id R on to H arry a s th ey s e t o ff f o r th e G re at
Hall. “F re d an d G eo rg e w ere rig ht, w ere n 't th ey ? H e re ally k now s h is stu ff ,
Moody, d oesn 't h e? W hen h e d id A vad a K ed av ra , th e w ay th at s p id er ju st d ie d ,
ju st s n uff e d i t r ig ht— ”
But R on fe ll s u dden ly s ile n t a t th e lo ok o n H arry 's fa ce a n d d id n't s p eak
ag ain u ntil th ey re ach ed th e G re at H all, w hen h e sa id h e su ppose d th ey h ad
bette r m ak e a sta rt on P ro fe sso r T re la w ney 's pre d ic tio ns to nig ht, sin ce th ey
would t a k e h ours .
Herm io ne d id n ot jo in in w ith H arry a n d R on's c o nvers a tio n d urin g d in ner,
but a te f u rio usly f a st, a n d th en le ft f o r th e lib ra ry a g ain . H arry a n d R on w alk ed
back to G ry ff in dor T ow er, a n d H arry , w ho h ad b een th in kin g o f n oth in g e ls e a ll
th ro ugh d in ner, n ow r a is e d t h e s u bje ct o f t h e U nfo rg iv ab le C urs e s h im se lf .
“W ould n't M oody a n d D um ble d ore b e in tr o uble w ith th e M in is tr y if th ey
knew w e'd s e en t h e c u rs e s? ” H arry a sk ed a s t h ey a p pro ach ed t h e F at L ad y.
“Y eah , p ro bab ly ,” sa id R on. “B ut D um ble d ore 's alw ay s d one th in gs h is
way, h asn 't h e, a n d M oody's b een g ettin g in tr o uble f o r y ears , I r e ck on. A tta ck s
fir s t a n d a sk s q uestio ns l a te r— lo ok a t h is d ustb in s. B ald erd ash .”
The F at L ad y s w ung f o rw ard to r e v eal th e e n tr a n ce h ole , a n d th ey c lim bed
in to t h e G ry ff in dor c o m mon r o om , w hic h w as c ro w ded a n d n ois y .
“S hall w e g et o ur D iv in atio n s tu ff , t h en ?” s a id H arry .
“I s 'p ose ,” R on g ro an ed .

They w en t u p to th e d orm ito ry to fe tc h th eir b ooks an d ch arts , to fin d
Nev ille th ere a lo ne, s ittin g o n h is b ed , re ad in g. H e lo oked a g ood d eal c alm er
th an a t t h e e n d o f M oody's l e sso n, t h ough s till n ot e n tir e ly n orm al. H is e y es w ere
ra th er r e d .
“Y ou a ll r ig ht, N ev ille ?” H arry a sk ed h im .
“O h y es,” s a id N ev ille , “ I'm fin e, th an ks. J u st re ad in g th is b ook P ro fe sso r
Moody l e n t m e… ”
He h eld u p t h e b ook: M ag ic al W ate r P la n ts o f t h e M ed ite rra n ean .
“A ppare n tly , P ro fe sso r S pro ut to ld P ro fe sso r M oody I'm re ally g ood at
Herb olo gy,” N ev ille s a id . T here w as a f a in t n ote o f p rid e in h is v oic e th at H arry
had r a re ly h eard t h ere b efo re . “ H e t h ought I 'd l ik e t h is .”
Tellin g N ev ille w hat P ro fe sso r S pro ut h ad s a id , H arry th ought, h ad b een a
very t a ctf u l w ay o f c h eerin g N ev ille u p, f o r N ev ille v ery r a re ly h eard t h at h e w as
good a t a n yth in g. I t w as t h e s o rt o f t h in g P ro fe sso r L upin w ould h av e d one.
Harry a n d R on to ok th eir c o pie s o f U nfo ggin g th e F utu re b ack d ow n to th e
co m mon r o om , f o und a t a b le , a n d s e t t o w ork o n t h eir p re d ic tio ns f o r t h e c o m in g
month . A n h our la te r, th ey h ad m ad e v ery little p ro gre ss, th ough th eir ta b le w as
litte re d w ith b its o f p arc h m en t b earin g s u m s a n d s y m bols , a n d H arry 's b ra in w as
as f o gged a s t h ough i t h ad b een f ille d w ith t h e f u m es f ro m P ro fe sso r T re la w ney 's
fir e .
“I h av en 't g ot a c lu e w hat th is lo t's su ppose d to m ean ,” h e sa id , sta rin g
dow n a t a l o ng l is t o f c alc u la tio ns.
“Y ou k now ,” s a id R on, w hose h air w as o n e n d b ecau se o f a ll th e tim es h e
had ru n his fin gers th ro ugh it in fru str a tio n, “I th in k it's back to th e old
Div in atio n s ta n dby.”
“W hat— mak e i t u p?”
“Y eah ,” sa id R on, sw eep in g th e ju m ble o f sc ra w le d n ote s o ff th e ta b le ,
dip pin g h is p en i n to s o m e i n k, a n d s ta rtin g t o w rite .
“N ex t M onday,” h e s a id a s h e s c rib ble d , “ I a m lik ely to d ev elo p a c o ugh,
ow in g to th e u nlu ck y c o nju nctio n o f M ars a n d J u pite r.” H e lo oked u p a t H arry .
“Y ou k now h er— ju st p ut i n l o ad s o f m is e ry , s h e'l l l a p i t u p.”
“R ig ht,” s a id H arry , c ru m plin g u p h is fir s t a tte m pt a n d lo bbin g it o ver th e
head s o f a g ro up o f c h atte rin g fir s t y ears in to th e fir e . “ O kay … o n M onday, I
will b e i n d an ger o fe r— burn s.”
“Y eah , y ou w ill b e,” s a id R on d ark ly , “ w e'r e s e ein g th e s k re w ts a g ain o n
Monday. O kay, T uesd ay, I 'l l… e rm ..
“L ose a tr e asu re d posse ssio n,” sa id H arry , w ho w as flic k in g th ro ugh
Unfo ggin g t h e F utu re f o r i d eas.
“G ood o ne,” sa id R on, c o pyin g it d ow n. “ B ecau se o f… e rm … M erc u ry .

Why d on't y ou g et s ta b bed i n t h e b ack b y s o m eo ne y ou t h ought w as a f rie n d?”
“Y eah … c o ol… ” s a id H arry , s c rib blin g i t d ow n, “ b ecau se … V en us i s i n t h e
tw elf th h ouse .”
“A nd o n W ed nesd ay, I t h in k I 'l l c o m e o ff w ors t i n a f ig ht.”
“A aah , I w as g oin g t o h av e a f ig ht. O kay, I 'l l l o se a b et.”
“Y eah , y ou'l l b e b ettin g I 'l l w in m y f ig ht…
They c o ntin ued to m ak e u p p re d ic tio ns (w hic h g re w s te ad ily m ore tr a g ic )
fo r a n oth er h our, w hile t h e c o m mon r o om a ro und t h em s lo w ly e m ptie d a s p eo ple
wen t u p t o b ed . C ro oksh an ks w an dere d o ver to t h em , le ap t l ig htly in to a n e m pty
ch air , a n d s ta re d i n sc ru ta b ly a t H arry , r a th er a s H erm io ne m ig ht l o ok i f s h e k new
th ey w ere n 't d oin g t h eir h om ew ork p ro perly .
Sta rin g a ro und th e ro om , tr y in g to th in k o f a k in d o f m is fo rtu ne h e h ad n't
yet u se d , H arry s a w F re d a n d G eo rg e s ittin g to geth er a g ain st th e o pposite w all,
head s to geth er, q uills o ut, p orin g o ver a s in gle p ie ce o f p arc h m en t. I t w as m ost
unusu al to s e e F re d a n d G eo rg e h id den a w ay in a c o rn er a n d w ork in g s ile n tly ;
th ey u su ally lik ed to b e in th e th ic k o f th in gs a n d th e n ois y c en te r o f a tte n tio n.
There w as s o m eth in g s e cre tiv e a b out th e w ay th ey w ere w ork in g o n th e p ie ce o f
parc h m en t, an d H arry w as re m in ded of how th ey had sa t to geth er w ritin g
so m eth in g b ack a t th e B urro w . H e h ad th ought th en th at it w as a n oth er o rd er
fo rm f o r W easle y s' W iz ard W heezes, b ut i t d id n't l o ok l ik e t h at t h is t im e; i f i t h ad
been , th ey w ould su re ly hav e le t L ee Jo rd an in on th e jo ke. H e w ondere d
wheth er i t h ad a n yth in g t o d o w ith e n te rin g t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t.
As H arry w atc h ed , G eo rg e s h ook h is h ead a t F re d , s c ra tc h ed o ut s o m eth in g
with h is q uill, a n d s a id , in a v ery q uie t v oic e th at n ev erth ele ss c arrie d a cro ss th e
alm ost d ese rte d ro om , “N o— th at so unds lik e w e'r e accu sin g h im . G ot to b e
care fu l… ”
Then G eo rg e lo oked o ver a n d s a w H arry w atc h in g h im . H arry g rin ned a n d
quic k ly re tu rn ed to h is p re d ic tio ns— he d id n't w an t G eo rg e to th in k h e w as
eav esd ro ppin g. S hortly a fte r th at, th e tw in s r o lle d u p th eir p arc h m en t, s a id g ood
nig ht, a n d w en t o ff t o b ed .
Fre d a n d G eo rg e h ad b een g one te n m in ute s o r s o w hen th e p ortr a it h ole
open ed an d H erm io ne clim bed in to th e co m mon ro om carry in g a sh eaf of
parc h m en t in o ne h an d a n d a b ox w hose c o nte n ts ra ttle d a s s h e w alk ed in th e
oth er. C ro oksh an ks a rc h ed h is b ack , p urrin g.
“H ello ,” s h e s a id , “ I'v e j u st f in is h ed !”
“S o h av e I !” s a id R on t r iu m phan tly , t h ro w in g d ow n h is q uill.
Herm io ne s a t d ow n, la id th e th in gs s h e w as c arry in g in a n e m pty a rm ch air ,
an d p ulle d R on's p re d ic tio ns t o w ard h er.
“N ot g oin g to h av e a v ery g ood m onth , a re y ou?” s h e s a id s a rd onic ally a s

Cro oksh an ks c u rle d u p i n h er l a p .
“A h w ell, a t l e ast I 'm f o re w arn ed ,” R on y aw ned .
“Y ou s e em t o b e d ro w nin g t w ic e,” s a id H erm io ne.
“O h a m I? ” s a id R on, p eerin g d ow n a t h is p re d ic tio ns. “ I'd b ette r c h an ge
one o f t h em t o g ettin g t r a m ple d b y a r a m pag in g h ip pogrif f .”
“D on't y ou t h in k i t's a b it o bvio us y ou'v e m ad e t h ese u p?” s a id H erm io ne.
“H ow d are y ou!” sa id R on, in m ock o utr a g e. “ W e'v e b een w ork in g lik e
house -e lv es h ere !”
Herm io ne r a is e d h er e y eb ro w s.
“It's j u st a n e x pre ssio n,” s a id R on h astily .
Harry la id d ow n h is q uill to o, h av in g ju st f in is h ed p re d ic tin g h is o w n d eath
by d ecap ita tio n.
“W hat's i n t h e b ox?” h e a sk ed , p oin tin g a t i t.
“F unny y ou s h ould a sk ,” s a id H erm io ne, w ith a n asty l o ok a t R on. S he t o ok
off t h e l id a n d s h ow ed t h em t h e c o nte n ts .
In sid e w ere a b out fif ty b ad ges, a ll o f d if f e re n t c o lo rs , b ut a ll b earin g th e
sa m e l e tte rs : S . P . E . W .
“S pew ?” sa id H arry , p ic k in g u p a b ad ge a n d lo okin g a t it. “ W hat's th is
ab out? ”
“N ot sp ew ,” sa id H erm io ne im patie n tly . “It's S-P -E -W . Sta n ds fo r th e
Socie ty f o r t h e P ro m otio n o f E lf is h W elf a re .”
“N ev er h eard o f i t,” s a id R on.
“W ell, o f c o urs e y ou h av en 't ,” s a id H erm io ne b ris k ly , “ I'v e o nly ju st s ta rte d
it.”
“Y eah ?” s a id R on i n m ild s u rp ris e . “ H ow m an y m em bers h av e y ou g ot? ”
“W ell— if y ou t w o j o in — th re e,” s a id H erm io ne.
“A nd y ou th in k w e w an t to w alk a ro und w earin g b ad ges s a y in g 's p ew ,' d o
you?” s a id R on.
“S -P -E -W !” s a id H erm io ne h otly . “ I w as g oin g to p ut S to p th e O utr a g eo us
Abuse o f O ur F ello w M ag ic al C re atu re s a n d C am paig n fo r a C han ge in T heir
Leg al S ta tu s— but i t w ould n't f it. S o t h at's t h e h ead in g o f o ur m an if e sto .”
She b ra n dis h ed t h e s h eaf o f p arc h m en t a t t h em .
“I'v e b een re se arc h in g it th oro ughly in th e lib ra ry . E lf e n sla v em en t g oes
back c en tu rie s. I c an 't b elie v e n o o ne's d one a n yth in g a b out i t b efo re n ow .”
“H erm io ne— open y our e ars ,” s a id R on lo udly . “ T hey. L ik e. It. T hey lik e
bein g e n sla v ed !”
“O ur sh ort- te rm aim s,” sa id H erm io ne, sp eak in g ev en m ore lo udly th an
Ron, a n d a ctin g a s th ough s h e h ad n't h eard a w ord , “ are to s e cu re h ouse -e lv es
fa ir w ag es a n d w ork in g c o nditio ns. O ur l o ng-te rm a im s i n clu de c h an gin g t h e l a w

ab out non-w an d use , an d tr y in g to get an elf in to th e D ep artm en t fo r th e
Reg ula tio n an d C ontr o l of M ag ic al C re atu re s, becau se th ey 'r e sh ock in gly
underre p re se n te d .”
“A nd h ow d o w e d o a ll t h is ? ” H arry a sk ed .
“W e s ta rt b y re cru itin g m em bers ,” s a id H erm io ne h ap pily . “ I th ought tw o
Sic k le s to jo in — th at buys a bad ge— an d th e pro ceed s can fu nd our le afle t
cam paig n. Y ou'r e tr e asu re r, R on— I'v e g ot y ou a co lle ctin g tin u psta ir s — an d
Harry , y ou'r e s e cre ta ry , s o y ou m ig ht w an t to w rite d ow n e v ery th in g I 'm s a y in g
now , a s a r e co rd o f o ur f ir s t m eetin g.”
There w as a p au se in w hic h H erm io ne b eam ed a t th e p air o f th em , a n d
Harry s a t, to rn b etw een e x asp era tio n a t H erm io ne a n d a m use m en t a t th e lo ok o n
Ron's fa ce. T he sile n ce w as b ro ken , n ot b y R on, w ho in a n y c ase lo oked a s
th ough h e w as te m pora rily d um bstr u ck , b ut b y a s o ft ta p , ta p o n th e w in dow .
Harry lo oked a cro ss th e n ow e m pty c o m mon r o om a n d s a w , illu m in ate d b y th e
moonlig ht, a s n ow y o w l p erc h ed o n t h e w in dow sill.
“H ed w ig !” h e s h oute d , a n d h e la u nch ed h im se lf o ut o f h is c h air a n d a cro ss
th e r o om t o p ull o pen t h e w in dow .
Hed w ig f le w in sid e, s o are d a cro ss th e r o om , a n d la n ded o n th e ta b le o n to p
of H arry 's p re d ic tio ns.
“A bout t im e!” s a id H arry , h urry in g a fte r h er.
“S he's g ot a n a n sw er!” s a id R on e x cite d ly , p oin tin g a t th e g ru bby p ie ce o f
parc h m en t t ie d t o H ed w ig 's l e g .
Harry h astily u ntie d it a n d s a t d ow n to re ad , w here u pon H ed w ig flu tte re d
onto h is k nee, h ootin g s o ftly .
“W hat d oes i t s a y ?” H erm io ne a sk ed b re ath le ssly .
The le tte r w as v ery s h ort, a n d lo oked a s th ough it h ad b een s c ra w le d in a
gre at h urry . H arry r e ad i t a lo ud:
Harry —
I'm fly in g n orth im med ia te ly . T his n ew s a b out y our s c ar is th e la te st in a
se rie s o f s tr a n ge r u m ors th at h av e r e ach ed m e h ere . I f it h urts a g ain , g o s tr a ig ht
to D um ble d ore — th ey 'r e sa y in g he's got M ad -E ye out of re tir e m en t, w hic h
mean s h e's r e ad in g t h e s ig ns, e v en i f n o o ne e ls e i s .
I'l l b e in to uch s o on. M y b est to R on a n d H erm io ne. K eep y our e y es o pen ,
Harry .
Sir iu s
Harry l o oked u p a t R on a n d H erm io ne, w ho s ta re d b ack a t h im .
“H e's f ly in g n orth ?” H erm io ne w his p ere d . “ H e's c o m in g b ack ?”
“D um ble d ore 's r e ad in g w hat s ig ns? ” s a id R on, l o okin g p erp le x ed . “ H arry —
what's u p?”

For H arry h ad ju st h it h im se lf in th e f o re h ead w ith h is f is t, jo ltin g H ed w ig
out o f h is l a p .
“I s h ould n't 'v e t o ld h im !” H arry s a id f u rio usly .
“W hat a re y ou o n a b out? ” s a id R on i n s u rp ris e .
“It's m ad e h im th in k h e's g ot to c o m e b ack !” s a id H arry , n ow s la m min g h is
fis t o n th e ta b le so th at H ed w ig la n ded o n th e b ack o f R on's ch air , h ootin g
in dig nan tly . “ C om in g b ack , b ecau se h e t h in ks I 'm i n t r o uble ! A nd t h ere 's n oth in g
wro ng w ith m e! A nd I h av en 't g ot a n yth in g f o r y ou,” H arry s n ap ped a t H ed w ig ,
who w as c lic k in g h er b eak e x pecta n tly , “ y ou'l l h av e to g o u p to th e O wle ry if
you w an t f o od.”
Hed w ig g av e h im a n e x tr e m ely o ff e n ded lo ok a n d to ok o ff fo r th e o pen
win dow , c u ff in g h im a ro und t h e h ead w ith h er o uts tr e tc h ed w in g a s s h e w en t.
“H arry ,” H erm io ne b eg an , i n a p acif y in g s o rt o f v oic e.
“I'm g oin g t o b ed ,” s a id H arry s h ortly . “ S ee y ou i n t h e m orn in g.”
Upsta ir s in th e d orm ito ry h e p ulle d o n h is p aja m as a n d g ot in to h is fo ur-
poste r, b ut h e d id n't f e el r e m ote ly t ir e d .
If S ir iu s c am e b ack a n d g ot c au ght, it w ould b e h is , H arry 's , fa u lt. W hy
had n't h e k ep t h is m outh s h ut? A f e w s e co nds' p ain a n d h e'd h ad t o b la b … I f h e'd
ju st h ad t h e s e n se t o k eep i t t o h im se lf .
He h eard R on c o m e u p in to th e d orm ito ry a s h ort w hile la te r, b ut d id n ot
sp eak t o h im . F or a l o ng t im e, H arry l a y s ta rin g u p a t t h e d ark c an opy o f h is b ed .
The d orm ito ry w as c o m ple te ly s ile n t, a n d, h ad h e b een le ss p re o ccu pie d , H arry
would h av e r e aliz ed th at t h e a b se n ce o f N ev ille 's u su al s n ore s m ean t th at h e w as
not t h e o nly o ne l y in g a w ak e.

C H APT ER F IF T EEN
B EA UXBAT O NS A ND D URM ST R ANG
Early n ex t m orn in g, H arry w oke w ith a p la n fu lly fo rm ed in h is m in d, a s
t h ough h is s le ep in g b ra in h ad b een w ork in g o n it a ll n ig ht. H e g ot u p, d re sse d i n
t h e p ale d aw n l ig ht, l e ft t h e d orm ito ry w ith out w ak in g R on, a n d w en t b ack d ow n
t o th e d ese rte d c o m mon r o om . H ere h e to ok a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t f ro m th e ta b le
u pon w hic h h is D iv in atio n h om ew ork s till l a y a n d w ro te t h e f o llo w in g l e tte r:
Dear S ir iu s,
I r e ck on I ju st im ag in ed m y s c ar h urtin g, I w as h alf a sle ep w hen I w ro te to
y ou la st tim e. T here 's n o p oin t c o m in g b ack , e v ery th in g's f in e h ere . D on't w orry
a b out m e, m y h ead f e els c o m ple te ly n orm al.
Harry
He th en c lim bed o ut o f th e p ortr a it h ole , u p th ro ugh th e s ile n t c astle ( h eld
u p o nly b rie fly b y P eev es, w ho tr ie d to o vertu rn a la rg e v ase o n h im h alf w ay
a lo ng th e fo urth -flo or co rrid or), fin ally arriv in g at th e O wle ry , w hic h w as
s itu ate d a t t h e t o p o f W est T ow er.
The O wle ry w as a c ir c u la r s to ne r o om , r a th er c o ld a n d d ra fty , b ecau se n one
o f th e w in dow s h ad g la ss in th em . T he f lo or w as e n tir e ly c o vere d in s tr a w , o w l
d ro ppin gs, an d th e re g urg ita te d sk ele to ns o f m ic e an d v ole s. H undre d s u pon
h undre d s o f o w ls o f e v ery b re ed im ag in ab le w ere n estle d h ere o n p erc h es th at
r o se r ig ht u p to th e to p o f th e to w er, n early a ll o f th em a sle ep , th ough h ere a n d
t h ere a r o und a m ber e y e g la re d a t H arry . H e s p otte d H ed w ig n estle d b etw een a
b arn o w l a n d a ta w ny, a n d h urrie d o ver to h er, s lid in g a little o n th e d ro ppin g-
s tr e w n f lo or.
It to ok h im a w hile to p ers u ad e h er to w ak e u p a n d th en to lo ok a t h im , a s
s h e k ep t s h uff lin g a ro und o n h er p erc h , s h ow in g h im h er ta il. S he w as e v id en tly
s till fu rio us a b out h is la ck o f g ra titu de th e p re v io us n ig ht. In th e e n d, it w as
H arry s u ggestin g s h e m ig ht b e to o tir e d , a n d th at p erh ap s h e w ould a sk R on to
b orro w P ig w id geo n, th at m ad e h er stic k o ut h er le g a n d a llo w h im to tie th e
l e tte r t o i t.
“Ju st f in d h im , a ll r ig ht? ” H arry s a id , s tr o kin g h er b ack a s h e c arrie d h er o n
h is a rm t o o ne o f t h e h ole s i n t h e w all. “ B efo re t h e d em en to rs d o.”
She n ip ped h is f in ger, p erh ap s r a th er h ard er th an s h e w ould o rd in arily h av e
d one, b ut h oote d s o ftly i n a r e assu rin g s o rt o f w ay a ll t h e s a m e. T hen s h e s p re ad
h er w in gs a n d to ok o ff in to th e s u nris e . H arry w atc h ed h er f ly o ut o f s ig ht w ith
t h e fa m ilia r fe elin g o f u nease b ack in h is sto m ach . H e h ad b een so su re th at

Sir iu s's r e p ly w ould a lle v ia te h is w orrie s r a th er t h an i n cre asin g t h em .
“T hat w as a l ie , H arry ,” s a id H erm io ne s h arp ly o ver b re ak fa st, w hen h e t o ld
her a n d R on w hat h e h ad d one. “ Y ou d id n't im ag in e y our s c ar h urtin g a n d y ou
know i t.”
“S o w hat? ” s a id H arry . “ H e's n ot g oin g b ack t o A zk ab an b ecau se o f m e.”
“D ro p it,” s a id R on s h arp ly to H erm io ne a s s h e o pen ed h er m outh to a rg ue
so m e m ore , a n d f o r o nce, H erm io ne h eed ed h im , a n d f e ll s ile n t.
Harry d id h is b est n ot to w orry a b out S ir iu s o ver th e n ex t c o uple o f w eek s.
Tru e, h e c o uld n ot s to p h im se lf fro m lo okin g a n xio usly a ro und e v ery m orn in g
when th e p ost o w ls a rriv ed , n or, la te a t n ig ht b efo re h e w en t to s le ep , p re v en t
him se lf fro m se ein g h orrib le v is io ns o f S ir iu s, co rn ere d b y d em en to rs d ow n
so m e d ark L ondon str e et, b ut b etw een tim es h e tr ie d to k eep h is m in d o ff h is
godfa th er. H e w is h ed h e s till h ad Q uid ditc h to d is tr a ct h im ; n oth in g w ork ed s o
well o n a t r o uble d m in d a s a g ood, h ard t r a in in g s e ssio n. O n t h e o th er h an d, t h eir
le sso ns w ere beco m in g m ore dif f ic u lt an d dem an din g th an ev er befo re ,
partic u la rly M oody's D efe n se A gain st t h e D ark A rts .
To t h eir s u rp ris e , P ro fe sso r M oody h ad a n nounced th at h e w ould b e p uttin g
th e I m periu s C urs e o n e ach o f th em in tu rn , to d em onstr a te its p ow er a n d to s e e
wheth er t h ey c o uld r e sis t i ts e ff e cts .
“B ut— but y ou sa id it's ille g al, P ro fe sso r,” sa id H erm io ne u ncerta in ly a s
Moody c le are d a w ay th e d esk s w ith a s w eep o f h is w an d, le av in g a la rg e c le ar
sp ace i n t h e m id dle o f t h e r o om . “ Y ou s a id — to u se i t a g ain st a n oth er h um an w as
—”
“D um ble d ore w an ts y ou ta u ght w hat it f e els lik e,” s a id M oody, h is m ag ic al
ey e s w iv elin g o nto H erm io ne a n d f ix in g h er w ith a n e erie , u nblin kin g s ta re . “ If
you'd r a th er le arn th e h ard w ay — when s o m eo ne's p uttin g it o n y ou s o th ey c an
co ntr o l y ou c o m ple te ly — fin e b y m e. Y ou'r e e x cu se d . O ff y ou g o.”
He p oin te d o ne g narle d fin ger to w ard th e d oor. H erm io ne w en t v ery p in k
an d m utte re d s o m eth in g a b out n ot m ean in g th at s h e w an te d to le av e. H arry a n d
Ron g rin ned a t e ach o th er. T hey k new H erm io ne w ould r a th er e at b ubotu ber p us
th an m is s s u ch a n i m porta n t l e sso n.
Moody b eg an to b eck on stu den ts fo rw ard in tu rn an d p ut th e Im periu s
Curs e u pon th em . H arry w atc h ed a s, o ne b y o ne, h is c la ssm ate s d id th e m ost
ex tr a o rd in ary th in gs under its in flu en ce. D ean T hom as hopped th re e tim es
aro und th e ro om , sin gin g th e natio nal an th em . L av en der B ro w n im ita te d a
sq uir re l. N ev ille p erfo rm ed a se rie s o f q uite a sto nis h in g g ym nastic s h e w ould
certa in ly n ot h av e b een c ap ab le o f in h is n orm al s ta te . N ot o ne o f th em s e em ed
to b e a b le to f ig ht o ff th e c u rs e , a n d e ach o f th em r e co vere d o nly w hen M oody
had r e m oved i t.

“P otte r,” M oody g ro w le d , “ y ou n ex t.”
Harry m oved f o rw ard in to th e m id dle o f th e c la ssro om , in to th e s p ace th at
Moody h ad c le are d o f d esk s. M oody ra is e d h is w an d, p oin te d it a t H arry , a n d
sa id , '1 m perio !”
It w as th e m ost w onderfu l fe elin g. H arry fe lt a flo atin g s e n sa tio n a s e v ery
th ought a n d w orry in h is h ead w as w ip ed g en tly a w ay, le av in g n oth in g b ut a
vag ue, u ntr a ceab le h ap pin ess. H e sto od th ere fe elin g im men se ly re la x ed , o nly
dim ly a w are o f e v ery one w atc h in g h im .
And th en he heard M ad -E ye M oody's voic e, ech oin g in so m e dis ta n t
ch am ber o f h is e m pty b ra in : J u m p o nto t h e d esk … j u m p o nto t h e d esk …
Harry b en t h is k nees o bed ie n tly , p re p arin g t o s p rin g.
Ju m p o nto t h e d esk …
Why, t h ough? A noth er v oic e h ad a w oken i n t h e b ack o f h is b ra in .
Stu pid t h in g t o d o, r e ally , s a id t h e v oic e.
Ju m p o nto t h e d esk …
No, I d on't th in k I w ill, th an ks, s a id th e o th er v oic e, a little m ore f ir m ly …
no, I d on't r e ally w an t t o .
Ju m p! N OW !
The n ex t th in g H arry fe lt w as c o nsid era b le p ain . H e h ad b oth ju m ped a n d
tr ie d to pre v en t him se lf fro m ju m pin g— th e re su lt w as th at he'd sm ash ed
head lo ng i n to t h e d esk k nock in g i t o ver, a n d, b y t h e f e elin g i n h is l e g s, f ra ctu re d
both h is k neecap s.
“N ow , t h at's m ore l ik e i t! ” g ro w le d M oody's v oic e, a n d s u dden ly , H arry f e lt
th e e m pty , e ch oin g fe elin g in h is h ead d is a p pear. H e re m em bere d e x actly w hat
was h ap pen in g, a n d t h e p ain i n h is k nees s e em ed t o d ouble .
“L ook a t th at, y ou lo t… P otte r f o ught! H e f o ught it, a n d h e d am n n ear b eat
it! W e'l l t r y t h at a g ain , P otte r, a n d t h e r e st o f y ou, p ay a tte n tio n— watc h h is e y es,
th at's w here you se e it— very good, P otte r, very good in deed ! T hey 'l l hav e
tr o uble c o ntr o llin g y ou!”
“T he w ay h e ta lk s,” H arry m utte re d as h e h obble d o ut o f th e D efe n se
Again st th e D ark A rts c la ss a n h our la te r ( M oody h ad in sis te d o n p uttin g H arry
th ro ugh h is p aces fo ur tim es in a ro w , u ntil H arry c o uld th ro w o ff th e c u rs e
en tir e ly ), “ y ou'd t h in k w e w ere a ll g oin g t o b e a tta ck ed a n y s e co nd.”
“Y eah , I k now ,” s a id R on, w ho w as s k ip pin g o n e v ery a lte rn ate s te p . H e
had h ad m uch m ore d if f ic u lty w ith th e c u rs e th an H arry , th ough M oody a ssu re d
him th e eff e cts w ould w ear o ff b y lu nch tim e. “T alk ab out p ara n oid … ” R on
gla n ced n erv ously o ver h is s h ould er to c h eck th at M oody w as d efin ite ly o ut o f
ears h ot an d w en t o n. “N o w on der th ey w ere g la d to g et sh ot o f h im at th e
Min is tr y . D id you hear him te llin g S eam us w hat he did to th at w itc h w ho

sh oute d 'B oo' b eh in d h im o n A pril F ools ' D ay ? A nd w hen a re w e s u ppose d to
re ad u p o n r e sis tin g t h e I m periu s C urs e w ith e v ery th in g e ls e w e'v e g ot t o d o?”
All th e fo urth y ears h ad n otic ed a d efin ite in cre ase in th e a m ount o f w ork
th ey w ere r e q uir e d to d o th is te rm . P ro fe sso r M cG onag all e x pla in ed w hy, w hen
th e cla ss gav e a partic u la rly lo ud gro an at th e am ount of Tra n sfig ura tio n
hom ew ork s h e h ad a ssig ned .
“Y ou a re n ow e n te rin g a m ost im porta n t p hase o f y our m ag ic al e d ucatio n!”
sh e t o ld t h em , h er e y es g lin tin g d an gero usly b eh in d h er s q uare s p ecta cle s. “ Y our
Ord in ary W iz ard in g L ev els a re d ra w in g c lo se r— ”
“W e d on't t a k e O . W . L . s t ill f if th y ear!” s a id D ean T hom as i n dig nan tly .
“M ay be n ot, T hom as, b ut b elie v e m e, y ou n eed a ll th e p re p ara tio n y ou c an
get! M is s G ra n ger r e m ain s t h e o nly p ers o n i n t h is c la ss w ho h as m an ag ed t o t u rn
a hed geh og in to a sa tis fa cto ry pin cu sh io n. I m ig ht re m in d you th at your
pin cu sh io n, T hom as, s till c u rls u p i n f rig ht i f a n yone a p pro ach es i t w ith a p in !”
Herm io ne, w ho h ad tu rn ed ra th er p in k a g ain , se em ed to b e tr y in g n ot to
lo ok t o o p le ase d w ith h ers e lf .
Harry a n d R on w ere d eep ly a m use d w hen P ro fe sso r T re la w ney to ld th em
th at th ey h ad re ceiv ed to p m ark s fo r th eir h om ew ork in th eir n ex t D iv in atio n
cla ss. S he re ad o ut la rg e p ortio ns o f th eir p re d ic tio ns, c o m men din g th em fo r
th eir u nflin ch in g a ccep ta n ce o f th e h orro rs in s to re f o r th em — but th ey w ere le ss
am use d w hen s h e a sk ed t h em t o d o t h e s a m e t h in g f o r t h e m onth a fte r n ex t; b oth
of t h em w ere r u nnin g o ut o f i d eas f o r c ata str o phes.
Mean w hile P ro fe sso r B in ns, th e g host w ho ta u ght H is to ry o f M ag ic , h ad
th em w ritin g w eek ly e ssa y s o n th e g oblin re b ellio ns o f th e e ig hte en th c en tu ry .
Pro fe sso r S nap e w as fo rc in g th em to re se arc h an tid ote s. T hey to ok th is o ne
se rio usly , as h e h ad h in te d th at h e m ig ht b e p ois o nin g o ne o f th em b efo re
Chris tm as to s e e if th eir a n tid ote w ork ed . P ro fe sso r F litw ic k h ad a sk ed th em to
re ad t h re e e x tr a b ooks i n p re p ara tio n f o r t h eir l e sso n o n S um monin g C harm s.
Even H ag rid w as a d din g to th eir w ork lo ad . T he B la st- E nded S kre w ts w ere
gro w in g a t a re m ark ab le p ace g iv en th at n obody h ad y et d is c o vere d w hat th ey
ate . H ag rid w as d elig hte d , a n d a s p art o f th eir “ p ro je ct,” su ggeste d th at th ey
co m e d ow n to h is h ut o n a lte rn ate e v en in gs to o bse rv e th e sk re w ts a n d m ak e
note s o n t h eir e x tr a o rd in ary b eh av io r.
“I w ill n ot,” s a id D ra co M alf o y f la tly w hen H ag rid h ad p ro pose d th is w ith
th e a ir o f F ath er C hris tm as p ullin g a n e x tr a -la rg e to y o ut o f h is sa ck . “ I se e
en ough o f t h ese f o ul t h in gs d urin g l e sso ns, t h an ks.”
Hag rid 's s m ile f a d ed o ff h is f a ce.
“Y eh 'l l d o w ha' y er t o ld ,” h e g ro w le d , “ o r I 'l l b e t a k in ' a l e af o utta P ro fe sso r
Moody's b ook… I h ear y eh m ad e a g ood f e rre t, M alf o y.”

The G ry ff in dors ro are d w ith la u ghte r. M alf o y flu sh ed w ith an ger, but
ap pare n tly th e m em ory o f M oody's p unis h m en t w as s till s u ff ic ie n tly p ain fu l to
sto p h im f ro m r e to rtin g. H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne r e tu rn ed to th e c astle a t th e
en d o f t h e l e sso n i n h ig h s p ir its ; s e ein g H ag rid p ut d ow n M alf o y w as p artic u la rly
sa tis fy in g, esp ecia lly becau se M alf o y had done his very best to get H ag rid
sa ck ed t h e p re v io us y ear.
When th ey a rriv ed in th e e n tr a n ce h all, th ey fo und th em se lv es u nab le to
pro ceed o w in g to th e la rg e cro w d o f stu den ts co ngre g ate d th ere , all m illin g
aro und a l a rg e s ig n t h at h ad b een e re cte d a t t h e f o ot o f t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase . R on,
th e ta lle st o f th e th re e, s to od o n tip to e to s e e o ver th e h ead s in f ro nt o f th em a n d
re ad t h e s ig n a lo ud t o t h e o th er t w o:
TR IW IZ A RD T O URN AM EN T
TH E D ELEG ATIO NS F R O M B EA UXBATO NS A ND
DURM ST R A NG W IL L B E A RRIV IN G A T 6 O 'C LO CK
ON F R ID AY T H E 3 0T H O F O CTO BER . L ESSO NS W IL L
EN D H ALF A N H OUR E A RLY —
“B rillia n t! ” s a id H arry . “ It's P otio ns la st th in g o n F rid ay ! S nap e w on't h av e
tim e t o p ois o n u s a ll! ”
ST U DEN TS W IL L R ETU RN T H EIR B A GS A ND B O OKS
TO T H EIR D ORM IT O RIE S A ND A SSE M BLE I N F R O NT
OF T H E C A ST LE T O G REET O UR G UEST S B EFO RE
TH E W ELC O M IN G F E A ST.
“O nly a w eek a w ay !” s a id E rn ie M acm illa n o f H uff le p uff , e m erg in g fro m
th e c ro w d, h is e y es g le am in g. “ I w onder if C ed ric k now s? T hin k I 'l l g o a n d te ll
him … ”
“C ed ric ?” s a id R on b la n kly a s E rn ie h urrie d o ff .
“D ig gory ,” s a id H arry . “ H e m ust b e e n te rin g t h e t o urn am en t.”
“T hat id io t, H ogw arts ch am pio n?” sa id R on as th ey push ed th eir w ay
th ro ugh t h e c h atte rin g c ro w d t o w ard t h e s ta ir c ase .
“H e's n ot a n id io t. Y ou ju st d on't lik e h im b ecau se h e b eat G ry ff in dor a t
Quid ditc h ,” sa id H erm io ne. “ I'v e h eard h e's a re ally g ood stu den t— an d h e's a
pre fe ct.”
She s p oke a s t h ough t h is s e ttle d t h e m atte r.
“Y ou o nly l ik e h im b ecau se h e's h an dso m e,” s a id R on s c ath in gly .
“E xcu se m e, I don't lik e peo ple ju st becau se th ey 'r e han dso m e!” sa id
Herm io ne i n dig nan tly .
Ron g av e a l o ud f a ls e c o ugh, w hic h s o unded o ddly l ik e “ L ock hart! ”
The a p peara n ce o f th e s ig n in th e e n tr a n ce h all h ad a m ark ed e ff e ct u pon
th e i n hab ita n ts o f t h e c astle . D urin g t h e f o llo w in g w eek , t h ere s e em ed t o b e o nly

one to pic of co nvers a tio n, no m atte r w here H arry w en t: th e Triw iz ard
Tourn am en t. R um ors w ere f ly in g f ro m s tu den t to s tu den t lik e h ig hly c o nta g io us
germ s: w ho w as g oin g to tr y fo r H ogw arts ch am pio n, w hat th e to urn am en t
would in volv e, h ow th e stu den ts fro m B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g d if f e re d
fro m t h em se lv es.
Harry n otic ed t o o t h at t h e c astle s e em ed t o b e u nderg oin g a n e x tr a -th oro ugh
cle an in g. S ev era l g rim y p ortr a its h ad b een s c ru bbed , m uch to th e d is p le asu re o f
th eir s u bje cts , w ho s a t h uddle d in th eir f ra m es m utte rin g d ark ly a n d w in cin g a s
th ey fe lt th eir ra w p in k fa ces. T he s u its o f a rm or w ere s u dden ly g le am in g a n d
movin g w ith out sq ueak in g, an d A rg us F ilc h , th e care ta k er, w as b eh av in g so
fe ro cio usly to a n y s tu den ts w ho f o rg ot to w ip e th eir s h oes th at h e te rrif ie d a p air
of f ir s t- y ear g ir ls i n to h yste ric s.
Oth er m em bers o f t h e s ta ff s e em ed o ddly t e n se t o o.
“L ongbotto m , k in dly d o n ot re v eal th at y ou c an 't e v en p erfo rm a sim ple
Sw itc h in g S pell in fro nt o f a n yone fro m D urm str a n g!” P ro fe sso r M cG onag all
bark ed a t th e e n d o f o ne p artic u la rly d if f ic u lt le sso n, d urin g w hic h N ev ille h ad
accid en ta lly t r a n sp la n te d h is o w n e ars o nto a c actu s.
When th ey w en t dow n to bre ak fa st on th e m orn in g of th e th ir tie th of
Octo ber, t h ey f o und t h at t h e G re at H all h ad b een d eco ra te d o vern ig ht. E norm ous
silk b an ners h ung f ro m th e w alls , e ach o f th em r e p re se n tin g a H ogw arts H ouse :
re d w ith a g old lio n fo r G ry ff iin dor, b lu e w ith a b ro nze e ag le fo r R av en cla w ,
yello w w ith a b la ck b ad ger fo r H uff le p uff , a n d g re en w ith a s ilv er s e rp en t fo r
Sly th erin . B eh in d th e te ach ers ' ta b le , th e la rg est b an ner o f a ll b ore th e H ogw arts
co at o f a rm s: l io n, e ag le , b ad ger, a n d s n ak e u nite d a ro und a l a rg e l e tte r H .
Harry , R on, an d H erm io ne sa t dow n besid e Fre d an d G eo rg e at th e
Gry ff in dor ta b le . O nce a g ain , a n d m ost u nusu ally , th ey w ere s ittin g a p art fro m
ev ery one e ls e a n d c o nvers in g i n l o w v oic es. R on l e d t h e w ay o ver t o t h em .
“It's a b um mer, a ll r ig ht,” G eo rg e w as s a y in g g lo om ily to F re d . “ B ut if h e
won't t a lk t o u s i n p ers o n, w e'l l h av e t o s e n d h im t h e l e tte r a fte r a ll. O r w e'l l s tu ff
it i n to h is h an d. H e c an 't a v oid u s f o rre v er.
“W ho's a v oid in g y ou?” s a id R on, s ittin g d ow n n ex t t o t h em .
“W is h y ou w ould ,” s a id F re d , l o okin g i r rita te d a t t h e i n te rru ptio n.
“W hat's a b um mer? ” R on a sk ed G eo rg e.
“H av in g a n osy g it l ik e y ou f o r a b ro th er,” s a id G eo rg e.
“Y ou tw o g ot a n y id eas o n th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t y et? ” H arry a sk ed .
“T hought a n y m ore a b out t r y in g t o e n te r? ”
“I a sk ed M cG onag all h ow t h e c h am pio ns a re c h ose n b ut s h e w asn 't t e llin g,”
sa id G eo rg e b itte rly . “ S he ju st to ld m e to s h ut u p a n d g et o n w ith tr a n sfig urin g
my r a cco on.”

“W onder w hat th e ta sk s are g oin g to b e?” sa id R on th oughtf u lly . “Y ou
know , I b et w e c o uld d o t h em , H arry . W e'v e d one d an gero us s tu ff b efo re … ”
“N ot in fro nt o f a p an el o f ju dges, y ou h av en 't ,” s a id F re d . “ M cG onag all
sa y s th e c h am pio ns g et a w ard ed p oin ts a cco rd in g to h ow w ell th ey 'v e d one th e
ta sk s.”
“W ho a re t h e j u dges? ” H arry a sk ed .
“W ell, th e H ead s o f th e p artic ip atin g s c h ools a re a lw ay s o n th e p an el,” s a id
Herm io ne, an d ev ery one lo oked aro und at h er, ra th er su rp ris e d , “b ecau se all
th re e o f th em w ere in ju re d d urin g th e T ourn am en t o f 1 792, w hen a c o ck atr ic e
th e c h am pio ns w ere s u ppose d t o b e c atc h in g w en t o n t h e r a m pag e.”
She notic ed th em all lo okin g at her an d sa id , w ith her usu al air of
im patie n ce t h at n obody e ls e h ad r e ad a ll t h e b ooks s h e h ad , “ It's a ll i n H ogw arts ,
A H is to ry . T hough, o f c o urs e , t h at b ook's n ot e n tir e ly r e lia b le . A R ev is e d H is to ry
of H ogw arts w ould b e a m ore a ccu ra te title . O r A H ig hly B ia se d a n d S ele ctiv e
His to ry o f H ogw arts , W hic h G lo sse s O ver t h e N astie r A sp ects o f t h e S ch ool.”
“W hat a re y ou o n a b out? ” s a id R on, th ough H arry th ought h e k new w hat
was c o m in g.
“H ouse -e lv es!” sa id H erm io ne, h er ey es fla sh in g. “N ot o nce, in o ver a
th ousa n d p ag es, d oes H ogw arts , A H is to ry m en tio n th at w e a re a ll c o llu din g in
th e o ppre ssio n o f a h undre d s la v es!”
Harry s h ook h is h ead a n d a p plie d h im se lf to h is s c ra m ble d e g gs. H is a n d
Ron's la ck of en th usia sm had done noth in g w hats o ev er to cu rb H erm io ne's
dete rm in atio n t o p urs u e j u stic e f o r h ouse -e lv es.
Tru e, b oth o f th em h ad p aid tw o S ic k le s fo r a S . P . E . W . b ad ge, b ut th ey
had o nly d one it to k eep h er q uie t. T heir S ic k le s h ad b een w aste d , h ow ev er; if
an yth in g, th ey s e em ed to h av e m ad e H erm io ne m ore v ocif e ro us. S he h ad b een
bad gerin g H arry a n d R on e v er s in ce, fir s t to w ear th e b ad ges, th en to p ers u ad e
oth ers to d o th e s a m e, a n d s h e h ad a ls o ta k en to ra ttlin g a ro und th e G ry ff in dor
co m mon ro om e v ery e v en in g, c o rn erin g p eo ple a n d sh ak in g th e c o lle ctin g tin
under t h eir n ose s.
“Y ou d o r e aliz e t h at y our s h eets a re c h an ged , y our f ir e s l it, y our c la ssro om s
cle an ed , a n d y our f o od c o oked b y a g ro up o f m ag ic al c re atu re s w ho a re u npaid
an d e n sla v ed ?” s h e k ep t s a y in g f ie rc ely .
Som e peo ple , lik e N ev ille , had paid up ju st to sto p H erm io ne fro m
glo w erin g a t th em . A fe w s e em ed m ild ly in te re ste d in w hat s h e h ad to s a y, b ut
were re lu cta n t to ta k e a m ore a ctiv e ro le in c am paig nin g. M an y re g ard ed th e
whole t h in g a s a j o ke.
Ron n ow ro lle d h is e y es a t th e c eilin g, w hic h w as flo odin g th em a ll in
au tu m n s u nlig ht, a n d F re d b ecam e e x tr e m ely in te re ste d in h is b aco n ( b oth tw in s

had re fu se d to b uy a S . P . E . W . b ad ge). G eo rg e, h ow ev er, le an ed in to w ard
Herm io ne.
“L is te n , h av e y ou e v er b een d ow n i n t h e k itc h en s, H erm io ne?”
“N o, o f co urs e n ot,” sa id H erm io ne cu rtly , “I h ard ly th in k stu den ts are
su ppose d t o — ”
“W ell, w e h av e,” sa id G eo rg e, in dic atin g F re d , “lo ad s o f tim es, to n ic k
fo od. A nd w e'v e m et t h em , a n d t h ey 'r e h ap py. T hey t h in k t h ey 'v e g ot t h e b est j o b
in t h e w orld — ”
“T hat's becau se th ey 'r e uned ucate d an d bra in w ash ed !” H erm io ne beg an
hotly , b ut h er n ex t f e w w ord s w ere d ro w ned o ut b y th e s u dden w hoosh in g n ois e
fro m o verh ead , w hic h a n nounced t h e a rriv al o f t h e p ost o w ls . H arry l o oked u p a t
once, a n d s a w H ed w ig s o arin g to w ard h im . H erm io ne s to pped ta lk in g a b ru ptly ;
sh e an d R on w atc h ed H ed w ig an xio usly as sh e flu tte re d d ow n o nto H arry 's
sh ould er, f o ld ed h er w in gs, a n d h eld o ut h er l e g w earily .
Harry p ulle d o ff S ir iu s's re p ly a n d o ff e re d H ed w ig h is b aco n rin ds, w hic h
sh e a te g ra te fu lly . T hen , c h eck in g t h at F re d a n d G eo rg e w ere s a fe ly i m mers e d i n
fu rth er d is c u ssio ns a b out t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t, H arry r e ad o ut S ir iu s's l e tte r
in a w his p er t o R on a n d H erm io ne.
Nic e t r y , H arry .
I'm b ack in th e c o untr y a n d w ell h id den . I w an t y ou to k eep m e p oste d o n
ev ery th in g th at's g oin g o n a t H ogw arts . D on't u se H ed w ig , k eep c h an gin g o w ls ,
an d d on't w orry a b out m e, ju st w atc h o ut fo r y ours e lf D on't fo rg et w hat I s a id
ab out y our s c ar.
Sir iu s
“W hy d 'y ou h av e t o k eep c h an gin g o w ls ? ” R on a sk ed i n a l o w v oic e.
“H ed w ig 'l l a ttr a ct to o m uch a tte n tio n,” s a id H erm io ne a t o nce. “ S he s ta n ds
out. A s n ow y o w l th at k eep s r e tu rn in g to w here v er h e's h id in g… I m ean , th ey 'r e
not n ativ e b ir d s, a re t h ey ?”
Harry r o lle d u p t h e l e tte r a n d s li p ped i t i n sid e h is r o bes, w onderin g w heth er
he f e lt m ore o r l e ss w orrie d t h an b efo re . H e s u ppose d t h at S ir iu s m an ag in g t o g et
back w ith out b ein g c au ght w as s o m eth in g. H e c o uld n't d en y e ith er th at th e id ea
th at S ir iu s w as m uch n eare r w as r e assu rin g; a t le ast h e w ould n't h av e to w ait s o
lo ng f o r a r e sp onse e v ery t im e h e w ro te .
“T han ks, H ed w ig ,” h e sa id , str o kin g h er. S he h oote d sle ep ily , d ip ped h er
beak b rie fly i n to h is g oble t o f o ra n ge j u ic e, t h en t o ok o ff a g ain , c le arly d esp era te
fo r a g ood l o ng s le ep i n t h e O wle ry .
There w as a p le asa n t f e elin g o f a n tic ip atio n in t h e a ir t h at d ay. N obody w as
very a tte n tiv e in le sso ns, b ein g m uch m ore in te re ste d in th e a rriv al th at e v en in g
of th e peo ple fro m B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g; ev en Potio ns w as m ore

beara b le th an u su al, a s it w as h alf a n h our sh orte r. W hen th e b ell ra n g e arly ,
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne h urrie d u p to G ry ff in dor T ow er, d ep osite d th eir b ag s
an d b ooks a s th ey h ad b een in str u cte d , p ulle d o n th eir c lo ak s, a n d ru sh ed b ack
dow nsta ir s i n to t h e e n tr a n ce h all.
The H ead s o f H ouse s w ere o rd erin g t h eir s tu den ts i n to l in es.
“W easle y, str a ig hte n your hat,” P ro fe sso r M cG onag all sn ap ped at R on.
“M is s P atil, t a k e t h at r id ic u lo us t h in g o ut o f y our h air.”
Parv ati s c o w le d a n d r e m oved a la rg e o rn am en ta l b utte rfly f ro m th e e n d o f
her p la it.
“F ollo w m e, p le ase ,” s a id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all. “ F ir s t y ears in f ro nt… n o
push in g…
They f ile d d ow n th e s te p s a n d lin ed u p in f ro nt o f th e c astle . I t w as a c o ld ,
cle ar ev en in g; dusk w as fa llin g an d a pale , tr a n sp are n t- lo okin g m oon w as
alr e ad y sh in in g o ver th e F orb id den F ore st. H arry , sta n din g b etw een R on a n d
Herm io ne in th e fo urth ro w fro m th e fro nt, sa w D en nis C re ev ey p ositiv ely
sh iv erin g w ith a n tic ip atio n a m ong t h e o th er f ir s t y ears .
“N early s ix ,” s a id R on, c h eck in g h is w atc h a n d th en s ta rin g d ow n th e d riv e
th at l e d t o t h e f ro nt g ate s. “ H ow d 'y ou r e ck on t h ey 'r e c o m in g? T he t r a in ?”
“I d oubt i t,” s a id H erm io ne.
“H ow , t h en ? B ro om stic k s? ” H arry s u ggeste d , l o okin g u p a t t h e s ta rry s k y.
“I d on't t h in k s o … n ot f ro m t h at f a r a w ay …
“A P ortk ey ?” R on su ggeste d . “O r th ey co uld A ppara te — may be you'r e
allo w ed t o d o i t u nder s e v en te en w here v er t h ey c o m e f ro m ?”
“Y ou c an 't A ppara te in sid e th e H ogw arts g ro unds, h ow o fte n d o I h av e to
te ll y ou?” s a id H erm io ne i m patie n tly .
They sc an ned th e d ark en in g g ro unds e x cite d ly , b ut n oth in g w as m ovin g;
ev ery th in g w as s till, s ile n t, a n d q uite a s u su al. H arry w as s ta rtin g t o f e el c o ld . H e
wis h ed th ey 'd h urry u p… M ay be th e f o re ig n s tu den ts w ere p re p arin g a d ra m atic
en tr a n ce… H e re m em bere d w hat M r. W easle y h ad sa id b ack a t th e c am psite
befo re th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up: “ alw ay s th e s a m e— we c an 't r e sis t s h ow in g o ff
when w e g et t o geth er… ”
And th en D um ble d ore c alle d o ut fro m th e b ack ro w w here h e s to od w ith
th e o th er te ach ers — ”A ha! U nle ss I a m v ery m uch m is ta k en , th e d ele g atio n f ro m
Beau xbato ns a p pro ach es!”
“W here ?” s a id m an y s tu den ts e ag erly , a ll l o okin g i n d if f e re n t d ir e ctio ns.
“T here !” y elle d a s ix th y ear, p oin tin g o ver t h e f o re st.
Som eth in g la rg e, m uch la rg er th an a b ro om stic k — or, in deed , a h undre d
bro om stic k s— was h urtlin g a cro ss th e d eep b lu e s k y to w ard th e c astle , g ro w in g
la rg er a ll t h e t im e.

“It's a d ra g on!” s h rie k ed o ne o f t h e f ir s t y ears , l o sin g h er h ead c o m ple te ly .
“D on't b e s tu pid … i t's a f ly in g h ouse !” s a id D en nis C re ev ey.
Den nis 's g uess w as c lo se r… A s th e g ig an tic b la ck s h ap e s k im med o ver th e
tr e eto ps o f th e F orb id den F ore st a n d th e lig hts s h in in g f ro m th e c astle w in dow s
hit it, th ey s a w a g ig an tic , p ow derb lu e, h ors e -d ra w n c arria g e, th e s iz e o f a la rg e
house , s o arin g t o w ard t h em , p ulle d t h ro ugh t h e a ir b y a d ozen w in ged h ors e s, a ll
palo m in os, a n d e ach t h e s iz e o f a n e le p han t.
The f ro nt t h re e r o w s o f s tu den ts d re w b ack w ard a s t h e c arria g e h urtle d e v er
lo w er, c o m in g in to la n d a t a tr e m en dous s p eed — th en , w ith a n a lm ig hty c ra sh
th at m ad e N ev ille ju m p b ack w ard o nto a S ly th erin fif th y ear's fo ot, th e h ors e s'
hooves, la rg er th an d in ner p la te s, h it th e g ro und. A se co nd la te r, th e c arria g e
la n ded to o, b ouncin g u pon its v ast w heels , w hile th e g old en h ors e s to sse d th eir
en orm ous h ead s a n d r o lle d l a rg e, f ie ry r e d e y es.
Harry ju st h ad tim e to s e e th at th e d oor o f th e c arria g e b ore a c o at o f a rm s
(tw o c ro sse d , g old en w an ds, e ach e m ittin g t h re e s ta rs ) b efo re i t o pen ed .
A b oy in p ale b lu e ro bes ju m ped d ow n fro m th e c arria g e, b en t fo rw ard ,
fu m ble d f o r a m om en t w ith s o m eth in g o n th e c arria g e f lo or, a n d u nfo ld ed a s e t
of g old en s te p s. H e s p ra n g b ack re sp ectf u lly . T hen H arry s a w a s h in in g, h ig h-
heele d b la ck s h oe e m erg in g f ro m th e in sid e o f th e c arria g e— a s h oe th e s iz e o f a
ch ild 's s le d — fo llo w ed , a lm ost im med ia te ly , b y th e la rg est w om an h e h ad e v er
se en in h is lif e . T he siz e o f th e c arria g e, a n d o f th e h ors e s, w as im med ia te ly
ex pla in ed . A f e w p eo ple g asp ed .
Harry h ad o nly e v er s e en o ne p ers o n a s la rg e a s th is w om an in h is lif e , a n d
th at w as H ag rid ; he doubte d w heth er th ere w as an in ch dif f e re n ce in th eir
heig hts . Y et so m eh ow — may be sim ply b ecau se h e w as u se d to H ag rid — th is
wom an (n ow a t th e fo ot o f th e s te p s, a n d lo okin g a ro und a t th e w aitin g, w id e-
ey ed c ro w d) s e em ed e v en m ore u nnatu ra lly la rg e. A s s h e s te p ped in to th e lig ht
flo odin g fro m th e e n tr a n ce h all, sh e w as re v eale d to h av e a h an dso m e, o liv e-
sk in ned f a ce; l a rg e, b la ck , l iq uid -lo okin g e y es; a n d a r a th er b eak y n ose . H er h air
was d ra w n b ack i n a s h in in g k nob a t t h e b ase o f h er n eck . S he w as d re sse d f ro m
head to fo ot in b la ck s a tin , a n d m an y m ag nif ic en t o pals g le am ed a t h er th ro at
an d o n h er t h ic k f in gers .
Dum ble d ore sta rte d to cla p ; th e stu den ts , fo llo w in g h is le ad , b ro ke in to
ap pla u se t o o, m an y o f t h em s ta n din g o n t ip to e, t h e b ette r t o l o ok a t t h is w om an .
Her fa ce re la x ed in to a g ra cio us sm ile an d sh e w alk ed fo rw ard to w ard
Dum ble d ore , e x te n din g a g litte rin g h an d. D um ble d ore , th ough ta ll h im se lf , h ad
bare ly t o b en d t o k is s i t.
“M y d ear M ad am e M ax im e,” h e s a id . “ W elc o m e t o H ogw arts .”
“D um bly -d ort,” s a id M ad am e M ax im e in a d eep v oic e. “ I 'o pe I fin d y ou

well? ”
“In e x celle n t f o rm , I t h an k y ou,” s a id D um ble d ore .
“M y p upils ,” sa id M ad am e M ax im e, w av in g o ne o f h er e n orm ous h an ds
care le ssly b eh in d h er.
Harry , w hose atte n tio n had been fo cu se d co m ple te ly upon M ad am e
Max im e, n ow n otic ed t h at a b out a d ozen b oys a n d g ir ls , a ll, b y t h e l o ok o f t h em ,
in th eir la te te en s, h ad e m erg ed f ro m th e c arria g e a n d w ere n ow s ta n din g b eh in d
Mad am e M ax im e. T hey w ere s h iv erin g, w hic h w as u nsu rp ris in g, g iv en t h at t h eir
ro bes s e em ed to b e m ad e o f f in e s ilk , a n d n one o f th em w ere w earin g c lo ak s. A
fe w h ad w ra p ped s c arv es a n d s h aw ls a ro und t h eir h ead s. F ro m w hat H arry c o uld
se e o f th em ( th ey w ere s ta n din g in M ad am e M ax im e's e n orm ous s h ad ow ), th ey
were s ta rin g u p a t H ogw arts w ith a p pre h en siv e l o oks o n t h eir f a ces.
“A s K ark aro ff a rriv ed y et? ” M ad am e M ax im e a sk ed .
“H e sh ould b e h ere a n y m om en t,” sa id D um ble d ore . “ W ould y ou lik e to
wait h ere a n d g re et h im o r w ould y ou p re fe r t o s te p i n sid e a n d w arm u p a t r if le ?”
“W arm u p, I t h in k,” s a id M ad am e M ax im e. “ B ut z e 'o rs e s— ”
“O ur C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s te ach er w ill b e d elig hte d to ta k e c are o f
th em ,” s a id D um ble d ore , “ th e m om en t h e h as r e tu rn ed f ro m d ealin g w ith a s lig ht
situ atio n t h at h as a ris e n w ith s o m e o f h is o th er— er— ch arg es.”
“S kre w ts ,” R on m utte re d t o H arry , g rin nin g.
“M y s te ed s r e q uir e — er— fo rc efu l 'a n dlin g,” s a id M ad am e M ax im e, l o okin g
as th ough sh e doubte d w heth er an y C are of M ag ic al C re atu re s te ach er at
Hogw arts c o uld b e u p t o t h e j o b. “ Z ey a re v ery s tr o ng… ”
“I a ssu re y ou th at H ag rid w ill b e w ell u p to th e jo b,” sa id D um ble d ore ,
sm ilin g.
“V ery w ell,” sa id M ad am e M ax im e, bow in g slig htly . “W ill you ple ase
in fo rm z is 'A grid z at z e 'o rs e s d rin k o nly s in gle -m alt w his k ey ?”
“It w ill b e a tte n ded t o ,” s a id D um ble d ore , a ls o b ow in g.
“C om e,” sa id M ad am e M ax im e im perio usly to her stu den ts , an d th e
Hogw arts c ro w d p arte d t o a llo w h er a n d h er s tu den ts t o p ass u p t h e s to ne s te p s.
“H ow b ig d 'y ou re ck on D urm str a n g's h ors e s are g oin g to b e?” S eam us
Fin nig an s a id , l e an in g a ro und L av en der a n d P arv ati t o a d dre ss H arry a n d R on.
“W ell, if th ey 'r e an y b ig ger th an th is lo t, ev en H ag rid w on't b e ab le to
han dle th em ,” sa id H arry . “T hat's if h e h asn 't b een atta ck ed b y h is sk re w ts .
Wonder w hat's u p w ith t h em ?”
“M ay be t h ey 'v e e sc ap ed ,” s a id R on h opefu lly .
“O h d on't s a y th at,” s a id H erm io ne w ith a s h udder. “ Im ag in e th at lo t lo ose
on t h e g ro unds… ”
They sto od, sh iv erin g slig htly n ow , w aitin g fo r th e D urm str a n g p arty to

arriv e. M ost p eo ple w ere g azin g h opefu lly u p a t t h e s k y.
For a f e w m in ute s, t h e s ile n ce w as b ro ken o nly b y M ad am e M ax im e's h uge
hors e s s n ortin g a n d s ta m pin g. B ut th en — ”C an y ou h ear s o m eth in g?” s a id R on
su dden ly .
Harry lis te n ed ; a lo ud a n d o ddly e erie n ois e w as d rif tin g to w ard th em f ro m
out of th e dark ness: a m uff le d ru m blin g an d su ck in g so und, as th ough an
im men se v acu um c le an er w ere m ovin g a lo ng a r iv erb ed .
“T he l a k e!” y elle d L ee J o rd an , p oin tin g d ow n a t i t. “ L ook a t t h e l a k e!”
Fro m th eir p ositio n a t th e to p o f th e la w ns o verlo okin g th e g ro unds, th ey
had a cle ar v ie w o f th e sm ooth b la ck su rfa ce o f th e w ate r— ex cep t th at th e
su rfa ce w as s u dden ly n ot s m ooth a t a ll. S om e d is tu rb an ce w as t a k in g p la ce d eep
in th e cen te r; g re at b ubble s w ere fo rm in g o n th e su rfa ce, w av es w ere n ow
wash in g o ver th e m uddy b an ks— an d th en , o ut in th e v ery m id dle o f th e la k e, a
whir lp ool a p peare d , a s i f a g ia n t p lu g h ad j u st b een p ulle d o ut o f t h e l a k e's f lo or..
What s e em ed to b e a lo ng, b la ck p ole b eg an to r is e s lo w ly o ut o f th e h eart
of t h e w hir lp ool… a n d t h en H arry s a w t h e r ig gin g…
“It's a m ast! ” h e s a id t o R on a n d H erm io ne.
Slo w ly , m ag nif ic en tly , th e sh ip ro se out of th e w ate r, gle am in g in th e
moonlig ht. It had a str a n gely sk ele ta l lo ok ab out it, as th ough it w ere a
re su rre cte d w re ck , a n d th e d im , m is ty lig hts s h im merin g a t its p orth ole s lo oked
lik e g hostly e y es. F in ally , w ith a g re at s lo sh in g n ois e , th e s h ip e m erg ed e n tir e ly ,
bobbin g o n th e tu rb ule n t w ate r, an d b eg an to g lid e to w ard th e b an k. A fe w
mom en ts la te r, th ey h eard th e sp la sh o f a n a n ch or b ein g th ro w n d ow n in th e
sh allo w s, a n d t h e t h ud o f a p la n k b ein g l o w ere d o nto t h e b an k.
Peo ple w ere dis e m bark in g; th ey co uld se e th eir silh ouette s passin g th e
lig hts in th e sh ip 's p orth ole s. A ll o f th em , H arry n otic ed , se em ed to b e b uilt
alo ng t h e l in es o f C ra b be a n d G oyle … b ut t h en , a s t h ey d re w n eare r, w alk in g u p
th e la w ns in to th e lig ht s tr e am in g f ro m th e e n tr a n ce h all, h e s a w th at th eir b ulk
was r e ally d ue to th e f a ct th at th ey w ere w earin g c lo ak s o f s o m e k in d o f s h ag gy,
matte d f u r. B ut th e m an w ho w as le ad in g th em u p to th e c astle w as w earin g f u rs
of a d if f e re n t s o rt: s le ek a n d s ilv er, l ik e h is h air.
“D um ble d ore !” h e c alle d h eartily a s h e w alk ed u p t h e s lo pe. “ H ow a re y ou,
my d ear f e llo w , h ow a re y ou?”
“B lo om in g, th an k you, Pro fe sso r Kark aro ff ,” Dum ble d ore re p lie d .
Kark aro ff h ad a fru ity , u nctu ous v oic e; w hen h e s te p ped in to th e lig ht p ourin g
fro m th e fro nt doors of th e castle th ey sa w th at he w as ta ll an d th in lik e
Dum ble d ore , b ut h is w hite h air w as s h ort, a n d h is g oate e (fin is h in g in a s m all
cu rl) d id n ot e n tir e ly h id e h is ra th er w eak c h in . W hen h e re ach ed D um ble d ore ,
he s h ook h an ds w ith b oth o f h is o w n.

“D ear o ld H ogw arts ,” h e s a id , l o okin g u p a t t h e c astle a n d s m ilin g; h is t e eth
were r a th er y ello w , a n d H arry n otic ed th at h is s m ile d id n ot e x te n d to h is e y es,
whic h re m ain ed co ld an d sh re w d. “H ow g ood it is to b e h ere , h ow g ood…
Vik to r, c o m e a lo ng, in to th e w arm th … y ou d on't m in d, D um ble d ore ? V ik to r h as
a s lig ht h ead c o ld … ”
Kark aro ff b eck oned f o rw ard o ne o f h is s tu den ts . A s th e b oy p asse d , H arry
cau ght a g lim pse o f a p ro m in en t cu rv ed n ose an d th ic k b la ck ey eb ro w s. H e
did n't n eed th e p unch o n th e arm R on g av e h im , o r th e h is s in h is ear, to
re co gniz e t h at p ro file .
“H arry — it's K ru m !”

C H APT ER S IX TEEN
T H E G OBLET O F F IR E
I d on't b elie v e it! ” R on s a id , in a s tu nned v oic e, a s th e H ogw arts s tu den ts
f ile d b ack u p th e s te p s b eh in d th e p arty f ro m D urm str a n g. “ K ru m , H arry ! V ik to r
K ru m !”
“F or h eav en 's s a k e, R on, h e's o nly a Q uid ditc h p la y er,” s a id H erm io ne.
“O nly a Q uid ditc h p la y er? ” R on s a id , lo okin g a t h er a s th ough h e c o uld n't
b elie v e h is e ars . “ H erm io ne— he's o ne o f th e b est S eek ers in th e w orld ! I h ad n o
i d ea h e w as s till a t s c h ool! ”
As th ey re cro sse d th e e n tr a n ce h all w ith th e re st o f th e H ogw arts s tu den ts
h ead in g f o r th e G re at H all, H arry s a w L ee J o rd an ju m pin g u p a n d d ow n o n th e
s o le s o f h is fe et to g et a b ette r lo ok a t th e b ack o f K ru m 's h ead . S ev era l s ix th -
y ear g ir ls w ere fra n tic ally s e arc h in g th eir p ock ets a s th ey w alk ed — ”O h I d on't
b elie v e i t, I h av en 't g ot a s in gle q uill o n m e— ”
“D 'y ou t h in k h e'd s ig n m y h at i n l ip stic k ?”
“R eally ,” H erm io ne sa id lo ftily a s th ey p asse d th e g ir ls , n ow sq uab blin g
o ver t h e l ip stic k .
“I'm g ettin g h is a u to gra p h i f I c an ,” s a id R on. “ Y ou h av en 't g ot a q uill, h av e
y ou, H arry ?”
“N ope, t h ey 'r e u psta ir s i n m y b ag ,” s a id H arry .
They w alk ed o ver t o t h e G ry ff in dor t a b le a n d s a t d ow n. R on t o ok c are t o s it
o n th e sid e fa cin g th e doorw ay, becau se K ru m an d his fe llo w D urm str a n g
s tu den ts w ere s till g ath ere d a ro und i t, a p pare n tly u nsu re a b out w here t h ey s h ould
s it. T he stu den ts fro m B eau xbato ns h ad c h ose n se ats a t th e R av en cla w ta b le .
T hey w ere lo okin g a ro und th e G re at H all w ith g lu m e x pre ssio ns o n th eir f a ces.
T hre e o f t h em w ere s till c lu tc h in g s c arv es a n d s h aw ls a ro und t h eir h ead s.
“It's n ot th at co ld ,” sa id H erm io ne d efe n siv ely . “W hy d id n't th ey b rin g
c lo ak s? ”
“O ver h ere ! C om e a n d s it o ver h ere !” R on h is se d . “ O ver h ere ! H erm io ne,
b udge u p, m ak e a s p ace— ”
“W hat? ”
“T oo l a te ,” s a id R on b itte rly .
Vik to r K ru m a n d h is f e llo w D urm str a n g s tu den ts h ad s e ttle d th em se lv es a t
t h e S ly th erin ta b le . H arry c o uld se e M alf o y, C ra b be, a n d G oyle lo okin g v ery
s m ug a b out t h is . A s h e w atc h ed , M alf o y b en t f o rw ard t o s p eak t o K ru m .
“Y eah , th at's rig ht, s m arm u p to h im , M alf o y,” s a id R on s c ath in gly . “ I b et

Kru m c an s e e r ig ht th ro ugh h im , th ough… b et h e g ets p eo ple f a w nin g o ver h im
all th e tim e… W here d 'y ou r e ck on th ey 'r e g oin g to s le ep ? W e c o uld o ff e r h im a
sp ace in o ur d orm ito ry , H arry … I w ould n't m in d g iv in g h im m y b ed , I c o uld k ip
on a c am p b ed .”
Herm io ne s n orte d .
“T hey lo ok a lo t hap pie r th an th e B eau xbato ns lo t,” sa id H arry . T he
Durm str a n g stu den ts w ere p ullin g o ff th eir h eav y fu rs a n d lo okin g u p a t th e
sta rry b la ck c eilin g w ith e x pre ssio ns o f in te re st; a c o uple o f th em w ere p ic k in g
up t h e g old en p la te s a n d g oble ts a n d e x am in in g t h em , a p pare n tly i m pre sse d .
Up at th e sta ff ta b le , F ilc h , th e care ta k er, w as ad din g ch air s . H e w as
wearin g h is m old y o ld ta ilc o at in h onor o f th e o ccasio n. H arry w as s u rp ris e d to
se e t h at h e a d ded f o ur c h air s , t w o o n e ith er s id e o f D um ble d ore 's .
“B ut th ere a re o nly tw o e x tr a p eo ple ,” H arry s a id . “ W hy's F ilc h p uttin g o ut
fo ur c h air s , w ho e ls e i s c o m in g?”
“E h?” s a id R on v ag uely . H e w as s till s ta rin g a v id ly a t K ru m .
When a ll th e s tu den ts h ad e n te re d th e H all a n d s e ttle d d ow n a t th eir H ouse
ta b le s, th e s ta ff e n te re d , f ilin g u p to th e to p ta b le a n d ta k in g th eir s e ats . L ast in
lin e w ere P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore , P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff , an d M ad am e M ax im e.
When th eir h ead m is tr e ss a p peare d , th e p upils fro m B eau xbato ns le ap t to th eir
fe et. A f e w o f th e H ogw arts s tu den ts la u ghed . T he B eau xbato ns p arty a p peare d
quite u nem barra sse d , h ow ev er, an d d id n ot re su m e th eir se ats u ntil M ad am e
Max im e h ad sa t d ow n o n D um ble d ore 's le ft- h an d sid e. D um ble d ore re m ain ed
sta n din g, a n d a s ile n ce f e ll o ver t h e G re at H all.
“G ood ev en in g, la d ie s an d gen tle m en , ghosts an d— most partic u la rly —
guests ,” s a id D um ble d ore , b eam in g a ro und a t th e f o re ig n s tu den ts . “ I h av e g re at
ple asu re in w elc o m in g y ou a ll to H ogw arts . I h ope a n d tr u st th at y our s ta y h ere
will b e b oth c o m fo rta b le a n d e n jo yab le .”
One o f th e B eau xbato ns g ir ls s till c lu tc h in g a m uff le r a ro und h er h ead g av e
what w as u nm is ta k ab ly a d eris iv e l a u gh.
“N o o ne's m ak in g y ou s ta y !” H erm io ne w his p ere d , b ris tlin g a t h er.
“T he to urn am en t w ill b e o ff ic ia lly o pen ed a t th e e n d o f th e fe ast,” sa id
Dum ble d ore . “ I n ow i n vite y ou a ll t o e at, d rin k, a n d m ak e y ours e lv es a t h om e!”
He sa t d ow n, a n d H arry sa w K ark aro ff le an fo rw ard a t o nce a n d e n gag e
him i n c o nvers a tio n.
The p la te s i n f ro nt o f t h em f ille d w ith f o od a s u su al. T he h ouse -e lv es i n t h e
kitc h en s e em ed to h av e p ulle d o ut a ll th e s to ps; th ere w as a g re ate r v arie ty o f
dis h es in fro nt o f th em th an H arry h ad e v er se en , in clu din g se v era l th at w ere
defin ite ly f o re ig n.
“W hat's th at? ” s a id R on, p oin tin g a t a la rg e d is h o f s o m e s o rt o f s h ellf is h

ste w t h at s to od b esid e a l a rg e s te ak -a n d-k id ney p uddin g.
“B ouilla b ais se ,” s a id H erm io ne.
“B le ss y ou,” s a id R on.
“It's F re n ch ,” s a id H erm io ne, “ I h ad it o n h olid ay s u m mer b efo re la st. It's
very n ic e.”
“I'l l t a k e y our w ord f o r i t,” s a id R on, h elp in g h im se lf t o b la ck p uddin g.
The G re at H all se em ed so m eh ow m uch m ore cro w ded th an u su al, ev en
th ough th ere w ere bare ly tw en ty ad ditio nal stu den ts th ere ; perh ap s it w as
becau se th eir d if f e re n tly c o lo re d u nif o rm s s to od o ut s o c le arly a g ain st th e b la ck
of th e H ogw arts ' ro bes. N ow th at th ey h ad re m oved th eir fu rs , th e D urm str a n g
stu den ts w ere r e v eale d t o b e w earin g r o bes o f a d eep b lo odre d .
Hag rid sid le d in to th e H all th ro ugh a d oor b eh in d th e sta ff ta b le tw en ty
min ute s a fte r th e s ta rt o f th e f e ast. H e s lid in to h is s e at a t th e e n d a n d w av ed a t
Harry , R on, a n d H erm io ne w ith a v ery h eav ily b an dag ed h an d.
“S kre w ts d oin g a ll r ig ht, H ag rid ?” H arry c alle d .
“T hriv in ', ” H ag rid c alle d b ack h ap pily .
“Y eah , I'l l ju st b et th ey a re ,” s a id R on q uie tly . “ L ooks lik e th ey 'v e fin ally
fo und a f o od t h ey l ik e, d oesn 't i t? H ag rid 's f in gers .”
At th at m om en t, a voic e sa id , “E xcu se m e, are you wan tin g ze
bouilla b ais se ?”
It w as th e g ir l fro m B eau xbato ns w ho h ad la u ghed d urin g D um ble d ore 's
sp eech . S he h ad f in ally r e m oved h er m uff le r. A lo ng s h eet o f s ilv ery -b lo nde h air
fe ll a lm ost to h er w ais t. S he h ad la rg e, d eep b lu e e y es, a n d v ery w hite , e v en
te eth .
Ron w en t p urp le . H e sta re d u p at h er, o pen ed h is m outh to re p ly , b ut
noth in g c am e o ut e x cep t a f a in t g urg lin g n ois e .
“Y eah , h av e i t,” s a id H arry , p ush in g t h e d is h t o w ard t h e g ir l.
“Y ou 'a v e f in is h ed w iz i t? ”
“Y eah ,” R on s a id b re ath le ssly . “ Y eah , i t w as e x celle n t.”
The g ir l p ic k ed u p th e d is h a n d c arrie d it c are fu lly o ff to th e R av en cla w
ta b le . R on w as s till g ogglin g a t th e g ir l a s th ough h e h ad n ev er s e en o ne b efo re .
Harry s ta rte d t o l a u gh. T he s o und s e em ed t o j o g R on b ack t o h is s e n se s.
“S he's a v eela !” h e s a id h oars e ly t o H arry .
“O f c o urs e s h e is n 't ! ” s a id H erm io ne ta rtly . “ I d on't s e e a n yone e ls e g ap in g
at h er l ik e a n i d io t! ”
But s h e w asn 't e n tir e ly r ig ht a b out th at. A s th e g ir l c ro sse d th e H all, m an y
boys' head s tu rn ed , an d so m e of th em se em ed to hav e beco m e te m pora rily
sp eech le ss, j u st l ik e R on.
“I'm te llin g y ou, th at's n ot a n orm al g ir l! ” s a id R on, le an in g s id ew ay s s o h e

co uld k eep a c le ar v ie w o f h er. “ T hey d on't m ak e t h em l ik e t h at a t H ogw arts !”
“T hey m ak e th em o kay a t H og w arts ,” sa id H arry w ith out th in kin g. C ho
hap pen ed t o b e s ittin g o nly a f e w p la ces a w ay f ro m t h e g ir l w ith t h e s ilv ery h air.
“W hen y ou'v e b oth p ut y our e y es b ack in ,” s a id H erm io ne b ris k ly , “ y ou'l l
be a b le t o s e e w ho's j u st a rriv ed .”
She w as p oin tin g u p a t th e s ta ff ta b le . T he tw o r e m ain in g e m pty s e ats h ad
ju st b een fille d . L udo B ag m an w as n ow s ittin g o n P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff 's o th er
sid e, w hile M r. C ro uch , P erc y 's b oss, w as n ex t t o M ad am e M ax im e.
“W hat a re t h ey d oin g h ere ?” s a id H arry i n s u rp ris e .
“T hey o rg an iz ed t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t, d id n't t h ey ?” s a id H erm io ne. “ I
su ppose t h ey w an te d t o b e h ere t o s e e i t s ta rt.”
When th e se co nd co urs e arriv ed th ey notic ed a num ber of unfa m ilia r
desse rts to o. R on e x am in ed a n o dd s o rt o f p ale b la n cm an ge c lo se ly , th en m oved
it c are fu lly a f e w in ch es to h is r ig ht, s o th at it w ould b e c le arly v is ib le f ro m th e
Rav en cla w ta b le . T he gir l w ho lo oked lik e a veela ap peare d to hav e eate n
en ough, h ow ev er, a n d d id n ot c o m e o ver t o g et i t.
Once th e g old en p la te s h ad b een w ip ed c le an , D um ble d ore s to od u p a g ain .
A p le asa n t s o rt o f t e n sio n s e em ed t o f ill t h e H all n ow . H arry f e lt a s lig ht t h rill o f
ex cite m en t, w onderin g w hat w as c o m in g. S ev era l s e ats d ow n fro m th em , F re d
an d Geo rg e were le an in g fo rw ard , sta rin g at Dum ble d ore with gre at
co ncen tr a tio n.
“T he m om en t h as c o m e,” sa id D um ble d ore , sm ilin g a ro und a t th e se a o f
uptu rn ed f a ces. “ T he T riw iz ard T ourn am en t is a b out to s ta rt. I w ould lik e to s a y
a f e w w ord s o f e x pla n atio n b efo re w e b rin g i n t h e c ask et— ”
“T he w hat? ” H arry m utte re d .
Ron s h ru gged .
“ju st to c la rif y th e p ro ced ure th at w e w ill b e f o llo w in g th is y ear. B ut f ir s t,
le t m e in tr o duce, f o r th ose w ho d o n ot k now th em , M r. B arte m iu s C ro uch , H ead
of th e Dep artm en t of In te rn atio nal M ag ic al Coopera tio n”— th ere was a
sm atte rin g o f p olite a p pla u se — ”an d M r. L udo B ag m an , H ead o f t h e D ep artm en t
of M ag ic al G am es a n d S ports .”
There w as a m uch lo uder ro und o f a p pla u se fo r B ag m an th an fo r C ro uch ,
perh ap s b ecau se o f h is f a m e a s a B eate r, o r s im ply b ecau se h e lo oked s o m uch
more lik ab le . H e a ck now le d ged it w ith a jo via l w av e o f h is h an d. B arte m iu s
Cro uch d id n ot s m ile o r w av e w hen h is n am e w as a n nounced . R em em berin g h im
in h is n eat s u it a t th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, H arry th ought h e lo oked s tr a n ge in
wiz ard 's r o bes. H is t o oth bru sh m usta ch e a n d s e v ere p artin g l o oked v ery o dd n ex t
to D um ble d ore 's l o ng w hite h air a n d b eard .
“M r. B ag m an an d M r. C ro uch h av e w ork ed tir e le ssly o ver th e la st fe w

month s on th e arra n gem en ts fo r th e Triw iz ard Tourn am en t,” D um ble d ore
co ntin ued , “ an d th ey w ill b e jo in in g m yse lf , P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff , a n d M ad am e
Max im e o n t h e p an el t h at w ill j u dge t h e c h am pio ns' e ff o rts .”
At th e m en tio n o f th e w ord “ ch am pio ns,” th e a tte n tiv en ess o f th e lis te n in g
stu den ts se em ed to sh arp en . P erh ap s D um ble d ore had notic ed th eir su dden
stilln ess, f o r h e s m ile d a s h e s a id , “ T he c ask et, t h en , i f y ou p le ase , M r. F ilc h .”
Filc h , w ho h ad b een lu rk in g u nnotic ed in a fa r c o rn er o f th e H all, n ow
ap pro ach ed D um ble d ore c arry in g a g re at w ooden c h est e n cru ste d w ith je w els . I t
lo oked ex tr e m ely o ld . A m urm ur o f ex cite d in te re st ro se fro m th e w atc h in g
stu den ts ; D en nis C re ev ey a ctu ally s to od o n h is c h air t o s e e i t p ro perly , b ut, b ein g
so t in y, h is h ead h ard ly r o se a b ove a n yone e ls e 's .
“T he in str u ctio ns fo r th e ta sk s th e ch am pio ns w ill fa ce th is year hav e
alr e ad y b een e x am in ed b y M r. C ro uch a n d M r. B ag m an ,” s a id D um ble d ore a s
Filc h p la ced t h e c h est c are fu lly o n t h e t a b le b efo re h im , “ an d t h ey h av e m ad e t h e
necessa ry a rra n gem en ts fo r e ach c h alle n ge. T here w ill b e th re e ta sk s, sp aced
th ro ughout th e s c h ool y ear, a n d th ey w ill te st th e c h am pio ns in m an y d if f e re n t
way s.. th eir m ag ic al p ro w ess— th eir d arin g— th eir p ow ers o f d ed uctio n— an d, o f
co urs e , t h eir a b ility t o c o pe w ith d an ger.”
At th is la st w ord , th e H all w as f ille d w ith a s ile n ce s o a b so lu te th at n obody
se em ed t o b e b re ath in g.
“A s y ou k now , th re e c h am pio ns c o m pete in th e to urn am en t,” D um ble d ore
wen t on calm ly , “o ne fro m each of th e partic ip atin g sc h ools . T hey w ill be
mark ed on how w ell th ey perfo rm each of th e Tourn am en t ta sk s an d th e
ch am pio n w ith th e h ig hest to ta l a fte r ta sk th re e w ill w in th e T riw iz ard C up. T he
ch am pio ns w ill b e c h ose n b y a n i m partia l s e le cto r: t h e G oble t o f F ir e .”
Dum ble d ore n ow to ok o ut h is w an d a n d ta p ped th re e tim es u pon th e to p o f
th e cask et. T he lid cre ak ed slo w ly o pen . D um ble d ore re ach ed in sid e it an d
pulle d o ut a la rg e, ro ughly h ew n w ooden cu p. It w ould h av e b een en tir e ly
unre m ark ab le h ad i t n ot b een f u ll t o t h e b rim w ith d an cin g b lu e-w hite f la m es.
Dum ble d ore c lo se d th e c ask et a n d p la ced th e g oble t c are fu lly o n to p o f it,
where i t w ould b e c le arly v is ib le t o e v ery one i n t h e H all.
“A nybody w is h in g to su bm it th em se lv es as ch am pio n m ust w rite th eir
nam e a n d s c h ool c le arly u pon a s lip o f p arc h m en t a n d d ro p it in to th e g oble t,”
sa id D um ble d ore . “ A sp ir in g c h am pio ns h av e tw en ty -fo ur h ours in w hic h to p ut
th eir n am es fo rw ard . T om orro w n ig ht, H allo w een , th e g oble t w ill re tu rn th e
nam es o f th e th re e it h as ju dged m ost w orth y to re p re se n t th eir sc h ools . T he
goble t w ill be pla ced in th e en tr a n ce hall to nig ht, w here it w ill be fre ely
accessib le t o a ll t h ose w is h in g t o c o m pete .
“T o en su re th at no undera g e stu den t yie ld s to te m pta tio n,” sa id

Dum ble d ore , “ I w ill b e d ra w in g a n A ge L in e a ro und th e G oble t o f F ir e o nce it
has b een p la ced in th e e n tr a n ce h all. N obody u nder th e a g e o f s e v en te en w ill b e
ab le t o c ro ss t h is l in e.
“F in ally , I w is h to im pre ss u pon a n y o f y ou w is h in g to c o m pete th at th is
to urn am en t is n ot to b e e n te re d in to lig htly . O nce a c h am pio n h as b een s e le cte d
by th e G oble t o f F ir e , h e o r s h e is o blig ed to s e e th e to urn am en t th ro ugh to th e
en d. T he p la cin g o f y our n am e in th e g oble t co nstitu te s a b in din g, m ag ic al
co ntr a ct. T here c an b e n o c h an ge o f h eart o nce y ou h av e b eco m e a c h am pio n.
Ple ase b e v ery su re , th ere fo re , th at y ou are w hole h earte d ly p re p are d to p la y
befo re y ou d ro p y our n am e in to th e g oble t. N ow , I th in k it is tim e f o r b ed . G ood
nig ht t o y ou a ll.”
“A n A ge L in e!” F re d W easle y s a id , h is e y es g lin tin g, a s th ey a ll m ad e th eir
way a cro ss th e H all to th e d oors in to th e e n tr a n ce h all. “ W ell, th at sh ould b e
fo ole d b y a n A gin g P otio n, s h ould n't it? A nd o nce y our n am e's in th at g oble t,
you'r e l a u ghin g— it c an 't t e ll w heth er y ou'r e s e v en te en o r n ot! ”
“B ut I don't th in k an yone under se v en te en w ill sta n d a ch an ce,” sa id
Herm io ne, “ w e j u st h av en 't l e arn ed e n ough… ”
“S peak f o r y ours e lf ,” s a id G eo rg e s h ortly . “ Y ou'l l tr y a n d g et in , w on't y ou,
Harry ?”
Harry th ought brie fly of D um ble d ore 's in sis te n ce th at nobody under
se v en te en s h ould s u bm it th eir n am e, b ut th en th e w onderfu l p ic tu re o f h im se lf
win nin g th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t fille d h is m in d a g ain … H e w ondere d h ow
an gry D um ble d ore w ould b e if s o m eo ne y ounger th an s e v en te en d id f in d a w ay
to g et o ver t h e A ge L in e.
“W here is he?” sa id Ron, w ho w asn 't lis te n in g to a w ord of th is
co nvers a tio n, b ut lo okin g th ro ugh th e c ro w d to s e e w hat h ad b eco m e o f K ru m .
“D um ble d ore d id n't s a y w here t h e D urm str a n g p eo ple a re s le ep in g, d id h e?”
But th is q uery w as an sw ere d alm ost in sta n tly ; th ey w ere le v el w ith th e
Sly th erin t a b le n ow , a n d K ark aro ff h ad j u st b ustle d u p t o h is s tu den ts .
“B ack to th e s h ip , th en ,” h e w as s a y in g. “ V ik to r, h ow a re y ou f e elin g? D id
you e at e n ough? S hould I s e n d f o r s o m e m ulle d w in e f ro m t h e k itc h en s? ”
Harry s a w K ru m s h ak e h is h ead a s h e p ulle d h is fu rs b ack o n. “ P ro fe sso r,
Iv ood l ik e s o m e v in e,” s a id o ne o f t h e o th er D urm str a n g b oys h opefu lly .
“I w asn 't o ff e rin g it to y ou, P olia k off ,” sn ap ped K ark aro ff , h is w arm ly
pate rn al a ir v an is h in g in a n in sta n t. “ I n otic e y ou h av e d rib ble d fo od a ll d ow n
th e f ro nt o f y our r o bes a g ain , d is g ustin g b oy— ”
Kark aro ff tu rn ed a n d le d h is s tu den ts to w ard th e d oors , re ach in g th em a t
ex actly t h e s a m e m om en t a s H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne. H arry s to pped t o l e t h im
walk t h ro ugh f ir s t.

“T han k you,” sa id K ark aro ff care le ssly , gla n cin g at him . A nd th en
Kark aro ff f ro ze. H e t u rn ed h is h ead b ack t o H arry a n d s ta re d a t h im a s t h ough h e
co uld n't b elie v e h is e y es. B eh in d t h eir h ead m aste r, t h e s tu den ts f ro m D urm str a n g
cam e to a h alt to o. K ark aro ff 's e y es m oved slo w ly u p H arry 's fa ce a n d fix ed
upon h is s c ar. T he D urm str a n g s tu den ts w ere s ta rin g c u rio usly a t H arry to o. O ut
of t h e c o rn er o f h is e y e, H arry s a w c o m pre h en sio n d aw n o n a f e w o f t h eir f a ces.
The b oy w ith fo od a ll d ow n h is fro nt n udged th e g ir l n ex t to h im a n d p oin te d
open ly a t H arry 's f o re h ead .
“Y eah , t h at's H arry P otte r,” s a id a g ro w lin g v oic e f ro m b eh in d t h em .
Pro fe sso r K ark aro ff sp un aro und. M ad -E ye M oody w as sta n din g th ere ,
le an in g heav ily on his sta ff , his m ag ic al ey e gla rin g unblin kin gly at th e
Durm str a n g h ead m aste r.
The c o lo r d ra in ed fro m K ark aro ff 's fa ce a s H arry w atc h ed . A te rrib le lo ok
of m in gle d f u ry a n d f e ar c am e o ver h im .
“Y ou!” h e sa id , sta rin g a t M oody a s th ough u nsu re h e w as re ally se ein g
him .
“M e,” s a id M oody g rim ly . “ A nd u nle ss y ou'v e g ot a n yth in g t o s a y t o P otte r,
Kark aro ff , y ou m ig ht w an t t o m ove. Y ou'r e b lo ck in g t h e d oorw ay.”
It w as tr u e; h alf th e stu den ts in th e H all w ere n ow w aitin g b eh in d th em ,
lo okin g o ver o ne a n oth er's s h ould ers t o s e e w hat w as c au sin g t h e h old up.
With out a n oth er w ord , P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff sw ep t h is stu den ts a w ay w ith
him . M oody w atc h ed h im u ntil h e w as o ut o f s ig ht, h is m ag ic al e y e f ix ed u pon
his b ack , a l o ok o f i n te n se d is lik e u pon h is m utila te d f a ce.
As th e nex t day w as Satu rd ay, m ost stu den ts w ould norm ally hav e
bre ak fa ste d la te . H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne, h ow ev er, w ere n ot a lo ne in ris in g
much e arlie r th an th ey u su ally d id o n w eek en ds. W hen th ey w en t d ow n in to th e
en tr a n ce h all, th ey sa w a b out tw en ty p eo ple m illin g a ro und it, so m e o f th em
eatin g to ast, a ll e x am in in g th e G oble t o f F ir e . I t h ad b een p la ced in th e c en te r o f
th e h all o n th e s to ol th at n orm ally b ore th e S ortin g H at. A th in g old en lin e h ad
been t r a ced o n t h e f lo or, f o rm in g a c ir c le t e n f e et a ro und i t i n e v ery d ir e ctio n.
“A nyone p ut t h eir n am e i n y et? ” R on a sk ed a t h ir d -y ear g ir l e ag erly .
“A ll th e D urm str a n g lo t,” sh e re p lie d . “B ut I h av en 't se en an yone fro m
Hogw arts y et.”
“B et s o m e o f t h em p ut i t i n l a st n ig ht a fte r w e'd a ll g one t o b ed ,” s a id H arry .
“I w ould 'v e if it h ad b een m e… w ould n't h av e w an te d e v ery one w atc h in g. W hat
if t h e g oble t j u st g obbed y ou r ig ht b ack o ut a g ain ?”
Som eo ne la u ghed b eh in d H arry . T urn in g, h e sa w F re d , G eo rg e, a n d L ee
Jo rd an h urry in g d ow n t h e s ta ir c ase , a ll t h re e o f t h em l o okin g e x tr e m ely e x cite d .
“D one it,” F re d s a id in a tr iu m phan t w his p er to H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne.

“Ju st t a k en i t.”
“W hat? ” s a id R on.
“T he A gin g P otio n, d ung b ra in s,” s a id F re d .
“O ne d ro p e ach ,” s a id G eo rg e, ru bbin g h is h an ds to geth er w ith g le e. “ W e
only n eed t o b e a f e w m onth s o ld er.”
“W e'r e g oin g to s p lit th e th ousa n d G alle o ns b etw een th e th re e o f u s if o ne
of u s w in s,” s a id L ee, g rin nin g b ro ad ly .
“I'm n ot s u re th is is g oin g to w ork , y ou k now ,” s a id H erm io ne w arn in gly .
“I'm s u re D um ble d ore w ill h av e t h ought o f t h is .”
Fre d , G eo rg e, a n d L ee i g nore d h er.
“R ead y?” F re d s a id to th e o th er tw o, q uiv erin g w ith e x cite m en t. “ C 'm on,
th en — I'l l g o f ir s t— ”
Harry w atc h ed , fa sc in ate d , a s F re d p ulle d a slip o f p arc h m en t o ut o f h is
pock et b earin g th e w ord s F re d W easle y — Hogw arts . F re d w alk ed r ig ht u p to th e
ed ge o f th e lin e a n d s to od th ere , r o ck in g o n h is to es lik e a d iv er p re p arin g f o r a
fif ty -fo ot d ro p. T hen , w ith th e e y es o f e v ery p ers o n in th e e n tr a n ce h all u pon
him , h e t o ok a g re at b re ath a n d s te p ped o ver t h e l in e.
For a s p lit s e co nd H arry th ought it h ad w ork ed — Geo rg e c erta in ly th ought
so , f o r h e le t o ut a y ell o f tr iu m ph a n d le ap t a fte r F re d — but n ex t m om en t, th ere
was a l o ud s iz zlin g s o und, a n d b oth t w in s w ere h urle d o ut o f t h e g old en c ir c le a s
th ough th ey h ad b een th ro w n b y a n in vis ib le s h ot- p utte r. T hey la n ded p ain fu lly ,
te n f e et a w ay o n t h e c o ld s to ne f lo or, a n d t o a d d i n su lt t o i n ju ry , t h ere w as a l o ud
poppin g n ois e , a n d b oth o f t h em s p ro ute d i d en tic al l o ng w hite b eard s.
The e n tr a n ce h all r a n g w ith la u ghte r. E ven F re d a n d G eo rg e jo in ed in , o nce
th ey h ad g otte n t o t h eir f e et a n d t a k en a g ood l o ok a t e ach o th er's b eard s.
“I d id w arn y ou,” s a id a d eep , a m use d v oic e, a n d e v ery one tu rn ed to s e e
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore co m in g o ut o f th e G re at H all. H e su rv ey ed F re d an d
Geo rg e, h is e y es t w in klin g. “ I s u ggest y ou b oth g o u p t o M ad am P om fre y. S he i s
alr e ad y t e n din g t o M is s F aw cett, o f R av en cla w , a n d M r. S um mers , o f H uff le p uff ,
both o f w hom d ecid ed to a g e th em se lv es u p a little to o. T hough I m ust sa y,
neith er o f t h eir b eard s i s a n yth in g l ik e a s f in e a s y ours .”
Fre d a n d G eo rg e s e t o ff fo r th e h osp ita l w in g, a cco m pan ie d b y L ee, w ho
was h ow lin g w ith la u ghte r, a n d H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne, a ls o c h ortlin g, w en t
in t o b re ak fa st.
The d eco ra tio ns in th e G re at H all h ad c h an ged th is m orn in g. A s it w as
Hallo w een , a clo ud o f liv e b ats w as flu tte rin g aro und th e en ch an te d ceilin g,
while h undre d s o f c arv ed p um pkin s le ere d f ro m e v ery c o rn er. H arry le d th e w ay
over to D ean an d S eam us, w ho w ere d is c u ssin g th ose H ogw arts stu den ts o f
se v en te en o r o ver w ho m ig ht b e e n te rin g.

“T here 's a ru m or g oin g a ro und th at W arrin gto n g ot u p e arly a n d p ut h is
nam e in ,” D ean to ld H arry . “ T hat b ig b lo ke fro m S ly th erin w ho lo oks lik e a
slo th .”
Harry , w ho h ad p la y ed Q uid ditc h a g ain st W arrin gto n, sh ook h is h ead in
dis g ust.
“W e c an 't h av e a S ly th erin c h am pio n!”
“A nd all th e Huff le p uff s are ta lk in g ab out Dig gory ,” sa id Seam us
co nte m ptu ously . “ B ut I w ould n't h av e th ought h e'd h av e w an te d to r is k h is g ood
lo oks.”
“L is te n !” s a id H erm io ne s u dden ly .
Peo ple w ere c h eerin g o ut in th e e n tr a n ce h all. T hey a ll s w iv ele d a ro und in
th eir se ats an d sa w A ngelin a Jo hnso n co m in g in to th e H all, g rin nin g in an
em barra sse d s o rt o f w ay. A ta ll b la ck g ir l w ho p la y ed C hase r o n th e G ry ff in dor
Quid ditc h te am , A ngelin a c am e o ver to th em , sa t d ow n, a n d sa id , “ W ell, I'v e
done i t! J u st p ut m y n am e i n !”
“Y ou'r e k id din g!” s a id R on, l o okin g i m pre sse d .
“A re y ou s e v en te en , t h en ?” a sk ed H arry .
“C ours e s h e i s , c an 't s e e a b eard , c an y ou?” s a id R on.
“I h ad m y b ir th day l a st w eek ,” s a id A ngelin a.
“W ell, I'm g la d so m eo ne fro m G ry ff in dor's e n te rin g,” sa id H erm io ne. “ I
re ally h ope y ou g et i t, A ngelin a!”
“T han ks, H erm io ne,” s a id A ngelin a, s m ilin g a t h er.
Yeah , b ette r y ou th an P re tty -B oy D ig gory , sa id S eam us, c au sin g se v era l
Huff le p uff s p assin g t h eir t a b le t o s c o w l h eav ily a t h im .
“W hat'r e w e g oin g to d o to day, th en ?” R on ask ed H arry an d H erm io ne
when t h ey h ad f in is h ed b re ak fa st a n d w ere l e av in g t h e G re at H all.
“W e h av en 't b een d ow n t o v is it H ag rid y et,” s a id H arry .
“O kay,” s a id R on, “ ju st a s lo ng a s h e d oesn 't a sk u s to d onate a f e w f in gers
to t h e s k re w ts .”
A l o ok o f g re at e x cite m en t s u dden ly d aw ned o n H erm io ne's f a ce.
“I'v e ju st r e aliz ed — I h av en 't a sk ed H ag rid to jo in S . P . E . W . y et! ” s h e s a id
brig htly . “ W ait f o r m e, w ill y ou, w hile I n ip u psta ir s a n d g et t h e b ad ges? ”
“W hat is it w ith h er? ” s a id R on, e x asp era te d , a s H erm io ne r a n a w ay u p th e
marb le s ta ir c ase .
“H ey, R on,” s a id H arry s u dden ly . “ It's y our f rie n d… ”
The s tu den ts f ro m B eau xbato ns w ere c o m in g th ro ugh th e f ro nt d oors f ro m
th e g ro unds, a m ong th em , th e v eela -g ir l. T hose g ath ere d a ro und th e G oble t o f
Fir e s to od b ack t o l e t t h em p ass, w atc h in g e ag erly .
Mad am e M ax im e e n te re d th e h all b eh in d h er s tu den ts a n d o rg an iz ed th em

in to a lin e. O ne b y o ne, th e B eau xbato ns s tu den ts s te p ped a cro ss th e A ge L in e
an d d ro pped th eir s lip s o f p arc h m en t in to th e b lu e-w hite f la m es. A s e ach n am e
en te re d t h e f ir e , i t t u rn ed b rie fly r e d a n d e m itte d s p ark s.
“W hat d 'y ou r e ck on'l l h ap pen t o t h e o nes w ho a re n 't c h ose n ?” R on m utte re d
to H arry as th e veela -g ir l dro pped her parc h m en t in to th e G oble t of F ir e .
“R eck on t h ey 'l l g o b ack t o s c h ool, o r h an g a ro und t o w atc h t h e t o urn am en t? ”
“D unno,” sa id H arry . “H an g aro und, I su ppose … M ad am e M ax im e's
sta y in g t o j u dge, i s n 't s h e?”
When a ll th e B eau xbato ns stu den ts h ad su bm itte d th eir n am es, M ad am e
Max im e l e d t h em b ack o ut o f t h e h all a n d o ut o nto t h e g ro unds a g ain .
“W here a re th ey s le ep in g, th en ?” s a id R on, m ovin g to w ard th e f ro nt d oors
an d s ta rin g a fte r t h em .
A l o ud r a ttlin g n ois e b eh in d t h em a n nounced H erm io ne's r e ap peara n ce w ith
th e b ox o f S . P . E . W . b ad ges.
“O h good, hurry up,” sa id R on, an d he ju m ped dow n th e sto ne ste p s,
keep in g h is e y es o n th e b ack o f th e v eela -g ir l, w ho w as n ow h alf w ay a cro ss th e
la w n w ith M ad am e M ax im e.
As th ey n eare d H ag rid 's c ab in o n th e e d ge o f th e F orb id den F ore st, th e
myste ry o f th e B eau xbato ns' s le ep in g q uarte rs w as s o lv ed . T he g ig an tic p ow der-
blu e c arria g e i n w hic h t h ey h ad a rriv ed h ad b een p ark ed t w o h undre d y ard s f ro m
Hag rid 's fro nt door, an d th e stu den ts w ere clim bin g back in sid e it. The
ele p han tin e fly in g h ors e s th at h ad p ulle d th e c arria g e w ere n ow g ra zin g in a
mak esh if t p ad dock a lo ngsid e i t.
Harry knock ed on H ag rid 's door, an d F an g's boom in g bark s an sw ere d
in sta n tly .
“B out tim e!” sa id H ag rid , w hen h e'd flu ng o pen th e d oor. “ T hought y ou
lo t'd f o rg otte n w here I l iv e!”
“W e'v e b een re ally b usy , H ag — ” H erm io ne sta rte d to sa y, b ut th en sh e
sto pped d ead , l o okin g u p a t H ag rid , a p pare n tly l o st f o r w ord s.
Hag rid w as w earin g h is b est (a n d v ery h orrib le ) h air y b ro w n su it, p lu s a
ch eck ed yello w -a n d-o ra n ge tie . T his w asn 't th e w ors t of it, th ough; he had
ev id en tly tr ie d to ta m e h is h air , u sin g la rg e q uan titie s o f w hat a p peare d to b e
ax le g re ase . I t w as n ow s lic k ed d ow n in to tw o b unch es— perh ap s h e h ad tr ie d a
ponyta il lik e B ill's , b ut fo und h e h ad to o m uch h air. T he lo ok d id n't re ally s u it
Hag rid a t a ll. F or a m om en t, H erm io ne g oggle d a t h im , t h en , o bvio usly d ecid in g
not t o c o m men t, s h e s a id , “ E rm — where a re t h e s k re w ts .”
“O ut b y t h e p um pkin p atc h ,” s a id H ag rid h ap pily . “ T hey 'r e g et- tin ' m assiv e,
mus' b e n early th re e fo ot lo ng n ow . O n'y tr o uble is , th ey 'v e s ta rte d k illin ' e ach
oth er.”

“O h n o, re ally ?” s a id H erm io ne, s h ootin g a re p re ssiv e lo ok a t R on, w ho,
sta rin g a t H ag rid 's o dd h air s ty le , h ad ju st o pen ed h is m outh to sa y so m eth in g
ab out i t.
“Y eah ,” s a id H ag rid s a d ly . “ S ' o kay, th ough, I 'v e g ot 'e m in s e p ara te b oxes
now . S till g ot a b ou' t w en ty .”
“W ell, t h at's l u ck y,” s a id R on. H ag rid m is se d t h e s a rc asm .
Hag rid 's cab in co m pris e d a sin gle ro om , in o ne co rn er o f w hic h w as a
gig an tic b ed c o vere d in a p atc h w ork q uilt. A s im ila rly e n orm ous w ooden ta b le
an d c h air s s to od in f ro nt o f th e f ir e b en eath th e q uan tity o f c u re d h am s a n d d ead
bir d s h an gin g f ro m th e c eilin g. T hey s a t d ow n a t th e ta b le w hile H ag rid s ta rte d
to m ak e te a, a n d w ere s o on im mers e d in y et m ore d is c u ssio n o f th e T riw iz ard
Tourn am en t. H ag rid s e em ed q uite a s e x cite d a b out i t a s t h ey w ere .
“Y ou w ait,” h e s a id , g rin nin g. “ Y ou ju s' w ait. Y er g oin g te r s e e s o m e s tu ff
yeh 'v e n ev er s e en b efo re . F ir s ' t a sk … a h , b ut I 'm n ot s u ppose d t e r s a y.”
“G o o n, H ag rid !” H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne u rg ed h im , b ut h e ju st s h ook
his h ead , g rin nin g.
“I d on' w an t t e r s p oil i t f e r y eh ,” s a id H ag rid . “ B ut i t's g onna b e s p ecta cu la r,
I'l l te ll y eh th at. T hem c h am pio ns'r e g oin g te r h av e th eir w ork c u t o ut. N ev er
th ought I 'd l iv e t e r s e e t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t p la y ed a g ain !”
They e n ded u p h av in g lu nch w ith H ag rid , th ough th ey d id n't e at m uch —
Hag rid had m ad e w hat he sa id w as a beef casse ro le , but afte r H erm io ne
unearth ed a la rg e ta lo n in h ers , s h e, H arry , a n d R on ra th er lo st th eir a p petite s.
How ev er, th ey e n jo yed th em se lv es tr y in g to m ak e H ag rid te ll th em w hat th e
ta sk s i n t h e to urn am en t w ere g oin g t o b e, s p ecu la tin g w hic h o f th e e n tr a n ts w ere
lik ely to b e se le cte d a s c h am pio ns, a n d w onderin g w heth er F re d a n d G eo rg e
were b eard le ss y et.
A lig ht r a in h ad s ta rte d to f a ll b y m id afte rn oon; it w as v ery c o zy s ittin g b y
th e fir e , lis te n in g to th e g en tle p atte r o f th e d ro ps o n th e w in dow , w atc h in g
Hag rid d arn in g h is s o ck s a n d a rg uin g w ith H erm io ne a b out h ouse -e lv es— fo r h e
fla tly r e fu se d t o j o in S . P . E . W . w hen s h e s h ow ed h im h er b ad ges.
“It'd b e d oin ' 'e m a n u nkin dness, H erm io ne,” h e s a id g ra v ely , th re ad in g a
massiv e b one n eed le w ith th ic k y ello w y arn . “ It's in th eir n atu re te r lo ok a fte r
hum an s, th at's w hat th ey lik e, s e e? Y eh 'd b e m ak in ' 'e m u nhap py te r ta k e a w ay
th eir w ork , a n ' i n su tin ' 'e m i f y eh t r ie d t e r p ay 'e m .”
“B ut H arry se t D obby fre e, an d h e w as o ver th e m oon ab out it! ” sa id
Herm io ne. “ A nd w e h eard h e's a sk in g f o r w ag es n ow !”
“Y eah , w ell, y eh g et w eir d os in e v ery b re ed . I'm n ot s a y in ' th ere is n 't th e
odd e lf w ho'd ta k e f re ed om , b ut y eh 'l l n ev er p ers u ad e m ost o f 'e m te r d o it— no,
noth in ' d oin ', H erm io ne.”

Herm io ne l o oked v ery c ro ss i n deed a n d s tu ff e d h er b ox o f b ad ges b ack i n to
her c lo ak p ock et.
By h alf p ast fiv e it w as g ro w in g d ark , an d R on, H arry , an d H erm io ne
decid ed it w as tim e to g et b ack u p to th e c astle fo r th e H allo w een fe ast— an d,
more i m porta n t, t h e a n nouncem en t o f t h e s c h ool c h am pio ns.
“I'l l c o m e w ith y eh ,” s a id H ag rid , p uttin g a w ay h is d arn in g. “ Ju s' g iv e u s a
se c.”
Hag rid g ot u p, w en t acro ss to th e ch est o f d ra w ers b esid e h is b ed , an d
beg an s e arc h in g f o r s o m eth in g i n sid e i t. T hey d id n't p ay t o o m uch a tte n tio n u ntil
a t r u ly h orrib le s m ell r e ach ed t h eir n ostr ils . C oughin g, R on s a id , “ H ag rid , w hat's
th at? ”
“E h?” s a id H ag rid , t u rn in g a ro und w ith a l a rg e b ottle i n h is h an d. “ D on' y eh
lik e i t? ”
“Is t h at a fte rs h av e?” s a id H erm io ne i n a s lig htly c h oked v oic e.
“E r— eau d e c o lo gne,” H ag rid m utte re d . H e w as b lu sh in g.
“M ay be i t's a b it m uch ,” h e s a id g ru ff ly . “ I'l l g o t a k e i t o ff , h an g o n… ”
He s tu m ped o ut o f t h e c ab in , a n d t h ey s a w h im w ash in g h im se lf v ig oro usly
in t h e w ate r b arre l o uts id e t h e w in dow .
“E au d e c o lo gne?” s a id H erm io ne i n a m azem en t. “ H ag rid ?”
“A nd w hat's w ith t h e h air a n d t h e s u it? ” s a id H arry i n a n u nderto ne.
“L ook!” sa id R on su dden ly , p oin tin g o ut o f th e w in dow . H ag rid h ad ju st
str a ig hte n ed u p a n d t u rn ed 'r o und. I f h e h ad b een b lu sh in g b efo re , i t w as n oth in g
to w hat h e w as d oin g n ow . G ettin g to th eir fe et v ery c au tio usly , s o th at H ag rid
would n't s p ot th em , H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne p eere d th ro ugh th e w in dow a n d
sa w th at M ad am e M ax im e a n d th e B eau xbato ns s tu den ts h ad ju st e m erg ed f ro m
th eir c arria g e, c le arly a b out to s e t o ff f o r th e f e ast to o. T hey c o uld n't h ear w hat
Hag rid w as s a y in g, b ut h e w as ta lk in g to M ad am e M ax im e w ith a ra p t, m is ty -
ey ed e x pre ssio n H arry h ad o nly e v er s e en h im w ear o nce b efo re — when h e h ad
been l o okin g a t t h e b ab y d ra g on, N orb ert.
“H e's goin g up to th e castle w ith her!” sa id H erm io ne in dig nan tly . “I
th ought h e w as w aitin g f o r u s!”
With out s o m uch a s a b ack w ard g la n ce a t h is c ab in , H ag rid w as tr u dgin g
off u p th e g ro unds w ith M ad am e M ax im e, th e B eau x-b ato ns s tu den ts f o llo w in g
in t h eir w ak e, j o ggin g t o k eep u p w ith t h eir e n orm ous s tr id es.
“H e fa n cie s h er!” sa id R on in cre d ulo usly . “W ell, if th ey en d u p h av in g
ch ild re n , th ey 'l l b e s e ttin g a w orld r e co rd — bet a n y b ab y o f th eir s w ould w eig h
ab out a t o n.”
They le t th em se lv es o ut o f th e c ab in a n d s h ut th e d oor b eh in d th em . I t w as
su rp ris in gly d ark o uts id e. D ra w in g th eir c lo ak s m ore c lo se ly a ro und th em se lv es,

th ey s e t o ff u p t h e s lo pin g l a w ns.
“O oh i t's t h em , l o ok!” H erm io ne w his p ere d .
The D urm str a n g p arty w as w alk in g u p to w ard th e castle fro m th e la k e.
Vik to r K ru m w as w alk in g s id e b y s id e w ith K ark aro ff , a n d t h e o th er D urm str a n g
stu den ts w ere s tr a g glin g a lo ng b eh in d th em . R on w atc h ed K ru m e x cite d ly , b ut
Kru m did not lo ok aro und as he re ach ed th e fro nt doors a little ah ead of
Herm io ne, R on, a n d H arry a n d p ro ceed ed t h ro ugh t h em .
When t h ey e n te re d t h e c an dle lit G re at H all i t w as a lm ost f u ll. T he G oble t o f
Fir e h ad b een m oved ; it w as n ow s ta n din g in f ro nt o f D um ble d ore 's e m pty c h air
at th e te ach ers ' ta b le . F re d a n d G eo rg e— cle an -s h av en a g ain — se em ed to h av e
ta k en t h eir d is a p poin tm en t f a ir ly w ell.
“H ope i t's A ngelin a,” s a id F re d a s H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne s a t d ow n.
“S o d o I !” s a id H erm io ne b re ath le ssly . “ W ell, w e'l l s o on k now !”
The H allo w een fe ast se em ed to ta k e m uch lo nger th an usu al. P erh ap s
becau se it w as th eir se co nd fe ast in tw o d ay s, H arry d id n't se em to fa n cy th e
ex tr a v ag an tly p re p are d f o od a s m uch a s h e w ould h av e n orm ally . L ik e e v ery one
els e in th e H all, ju dgin g by th e co nsta n tly cra n in g neck s, th e im patie n t
ex pre ssio ns o n e v ery fa ce, th e fid getin g, a n d th e sta n din g u p to se e w heth er
Dum ble d ore h ad f in is h ed e atin g y et, H arry s im ply w an te d t h e p la te s t o c le ar, a n d
to h ear w ho h ad b een s e le cte d a s c h am pio ns.
At lo ng la st, th e g old en p la te s r e tu rn ed to th eir o rig in al s p otle ss s ta te ; th ere
was a sh arp u psw in g in th e le v el o f n ois e w ith in th e H all, w hic h d ie d a w ay
alm ost in sta n tly a s D um ble d ore g ot to h is f e et. O n e ith er s id e o f h im , P ro fe sso r
Kark aro ff a n d M ad am e M ax im e lo oked a s te n se a n d e x pecta n t a s a n yone. L udo
Bag m an w as b eam in g a n d w in kin g a t v ario us stu den ts . M r. C ro uch , h ow ev er,
lo oked q uite u nin te re ste d , a lm ost b ore d .
“W ell, t h e g oble t i s a lm ost r e ad y t o m ak e i ts d ecis io n,” s a id D um ble d ore . “ I
estim ate th at it r e q uir e s o ne m ore m in ute . N ow , w hen th e c h am pio ns' n am es a re
calle d , I w ould a sk t h em p le ase t o c o m e u p t o t h e t o p o f t h e H all, w alk a lo ng t h e
sta ff t a b le , a n d g o t h ro ugh i n to t h e n ex t c h am ber” — he i n dic ate d t h e d oor b eh in d
th e s ta ff t a b le — ”w here t h ey w ill b e r e ceiv in g t h eir f ir s t i n str u ctio ns.”
He to ok o ut h is w an d a n d g av e a g re at s w eep in g w av e w ith it; a t o nce, a ll
th e can dle s ex cep t th ose in sid e th e carv ed pum pkin s w ere ex tin guis h ed ,
plu ngin g th em in to a s ta te o f s e m id ark ness. T he G oble t o f F ir e n ow s h one m ore
brig htly t h an a n yth in g i n t h e w hole H all, t h e s p ark lin g b rig ht, b lu ey -w hite n ess o f
th e fla m es alm ost p ain fu l o n th e ey es. E very one w atc h ed , w aitin g… A fe w
peo ple k ep t c h eck in g t h eir w atc h es…
“A ny s e co nd,” L ee J o rd an w his p ere d , t w o s e ats a w ay f ro m H arry .
The f la m es i n sid e t h e g oble t t u rn ed s u dden ly r e d a g ain . S park s b eg an t o f ly

fro m it. N ex t m om en t, a to ngue o f fla m e sh ot in to th e a ir , a c h arre d p ie ce o f
parc h m en t f lu tte re d o ut o f i t— th e w hole r o om g asp ed .
Dum ble d ore c au ght th e p ie ce o f p arc h m en t a n d h eld it a t a rm 's le n gth , s o
th at h e c o uld re ad it b y th e lig ht o f th e fla m es, w hic h h ad tu rn ed b ack to b lu e-
white .
“T he c h am pio n f o r D urm str a n g,” h e r e ad , in a s tr o ng, c le ar v oic e, “ w ill b e
Vik to r K ru m .”
“N o s u rp ris e s t h ere !” y elle d R on a s a s to rm o f a p pla u se a n d c h eerin g s w ep t
th e H all. H arry sa w V ik to r K ru m ris e fro m th e S ly th erin ta b le a n d slo uch u p
to w ard D um ble d ore ; he tu rn ed rig ht, w alk ed alo ng th e sta ff ta b le , an d
dis a p peare d t h ro ugh t h e d oor i n to t h e n ex t c h am ber.
“B ra v o, V ik to r!” b oom ed K ark aro ff , so lo udly th at ev ery one co uld h ear
him , e v en o ver a ll t h e a p pla u se . “ K new y ou h ad i t i n y ou!”
The cla p pin g an d ch attin g die d dow n. N ow ev ery one's atte n tio n w as
fo cu se d ag ain o n th e g oble t, w hic h , se co nds la te r, tu rn ed re d o nce m ore . A
se co nd p ie ce o f p arc h m en t s h ot o ut o f i t, p ro pelle d b y t h e f la m es.
“T he c h am pio n f o r B eau xbato ns,” s a id D um ble d ore , “ is F le u r D ela co ur!”
“It's h er, R on!” H arry sh oute d a s th e g ir l w ho so re se m ble d a v eela g ot
gra cefu lly to h er f e et, s h ook b ack h er s h eet o f s ilv ery b lo nde h air , a n d s w ep t u p
betw een t h e R av en cla w a n d H uff le p uff t a b le s.
“O h lo ok, th ey 'r e a ll d is a p poin te d ,” H erm io ne s a id o ver th e n ois e , n oddin g
to w ard th e r e m ain der o f th e B eau xbato ns p arty . “ D is a p poin te d ” w as a b it o f a n
unders ta te m en t, H arry th ought. T w o o f th e g ir ls w ho h ad n ot b een s e le cte d h ad
dis so lv ed i n to t e ars a n d w ere s o bbin g w ith t h eir h ead s o n t h eir a rm s.
When F le u r D ela co ur to o h ad v an is h ed in to th e s id e c h am ber, s ile n ce fe ll
ag ain , b ut th is tim e it w as a s ile n ce s o s tif f w ith e x cite m en t y ou c o uld a lm ost
ta ste i t. T he H ogw arts c h am pio n n ex t…
And t h e G oble t o f F ir e t u rn ed r e d o nce m ore ; s p ark s s h ow ere d o ut o f i t; t h e
to ngue o f fla m e s h ot h ig h in to th e a ir , a n d fro m its tip D um ble d ore p ulle d th e
th ir d p ie ce o f p arc h m en t.
“T he H ogw arts c h am pio n,” h e c alle d , “ is C ed ric D ig gory !”
“N o! “ sa id R on lo udly , b ut n obody h eard h im e x cep t H arry ; th e u pro ar
fro m th e n ex t ta b le w as to o g re at. E very s in gle H uff le p uff h ad ju m ped to h is o r
her fe et, s c re am in g a n d s ta m pin g, a s C ed ric m ad e h is w ay p ast th em , g rin nin g
bro ad ly , a n d h ead ed o ff to w ard th e c h am ber b eh in d th e te ach ers ' ta b le . In deed ,
th e ap pla u se fo r C ed ric w en t on so lo ng th at it w as so m e tim e befo re
Dum ble d ore c o uld m ak e h im se lf h eard a g ain .
“E xcelle n t! ” D um ble d ore c alle d h ap pily a s a t la st th e tu m ult d ie d d ow n.
“W ell, w e n ow h av e o ur th re e c h am pio ns. I a m s u re I c an c o unt u pon a ll o f y ou,

in clu din g th e re m ain in g stu den ts fro m B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g, to g iv e
your ch am pio ns ev ery ounce of su pport you can m uste r. B y ch eerin g your
ch am pio n o n, y ou w ill c o ntr ib ute i n a v ery r e al— ”
But D um ble d ore su dden ly sto pped sp eak in g, an d it w as ap pare n t to
ev ery body w hat h ad d is tr a cte d h im .
The f ir e i n t h e g oble t h ad j u st t u rn ed r e d a g ain . S park s w ere f ly in g o ut o f i t.
A lo ng f la m e s h ot s u dden ly in to th e a ir , a n d b orn e u pon it w as a n oth er p ie ce o f
parc h m en t.
Auto m atic ally , it s e em ed , D um ble d ore r e ach ed o ut a lo ng h an d a n d s e iz ed
th e
parc h m en t. H e h eld i t o ut a n d s ta re d a t t h e n am e w ritte n u pon i t. T here w as
a lo ng p au se , d urin g w hic h D um ble d ore sta re d at th e slip in h is h an ds, an d
ev ery one in th e ro om s ta re d a t D um ble d ore . A nd th en D um ble d ore c le are d h is
th ro at a n d r e ad o ut— ”H arry P otte r.”

C H APT ER S E V EN TEEN
T H E F O UR C H AM PIO NS
Harry s a t th ere , a w are th at e v ery h ead in th e G re at H all h ad tu rn ed to lo ok
a t h im . H e w as stu nned . H e fe lt n um b. H e w as su re ly d re am in g. H e h ad n ot
h eard c o rre ctly .
There w as n o a p pla u se . A b uzzin g, a s th ough o f a n gry b ees, w as s ta rtin g to
f ill th e H all; s o m e s tu den ts w ere s ta n din g u p to g et a b ette r lo ok a t H arry a s h e
s a t, f ro zen , i n h is s e at.
Up a t th e to p ta b le , P ro fe sso r M cG onag all h ad g ot to h er fe et a n d s w ep t
p ast L udo B ag m an an d P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff to w his p er u rg en tly to P ro fe sso r
D um ble d ore , w ho b en t h is e ar t o w ard h er, f ro w nin g s lig htly .
Harry tu rn ed to R on an d H erm io ne; bey ond th em , he sa w th e lo ng
G ry ff in dor t a b le a ll w atc h in g h im , o pen m outh ed .
“I d id n't p ut m y n am e i n ,” H arry s a id b la n kly . “ Y ou k now I d id n't .”
Both o f t h em s ta re d j u st a s b la n kly b ack .
At th e to p ta b le , P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore h ad str a ig hte n ed u p, n oddin g to
P ro fe sso r M cG onag all.
“H arry P otte r!” h e c alle d a g ain . “ H arry ! U p h ere , i f y ou p le ase !”
“G o o n,” H erm io ne w his p ere d , g iv in g H arry a s lig ht p ush .
Harry g ot t o h is f e et, t r o d o n t h e h em o f h is r o bes, a n d s tu m ble d s lig htly . H e
s e t o ff u p th e g ap b etw een th e G ry ff in dor a n d H uff le p uff ta b le s. It fe lt lik e a n
i m men se ly lo ng w alk ; th e to p ta b le d id n't s e em to b e g ettin g a n y n eare r a t a ll,
a n d h e c o uld f e el h undre d s a n d h undre d s o f e y es u pon h im , a s t h ough e ach w ere
a s e arc h lig ht. T he b uzzin g g re w lo uder a n d lo uder. A fte r w hat s e em ed lik e a n
h our, h e w as r ig ht in f ro nt o f D um ble d ore , f e elin g th e s ta re s o f a ll th e te ach ers
u pon h im .
“W ell… t h ro ugh t h e d oor, H arry ,” s a id D um ble d ore . H e w asn 't s m ilin g.
Harry m oved o ff a lo ng th e te ach ers ' ta b le . H ag rid w as s e ate d rig ht a t th e
e n d. H e d id n ot w in k at H arry , o r w av e, o r g iv e an y o f h is u su al sig ns o f
g re etin g. H e lo oked c o m ple te ly a sto nis h ed a n d s ta re d a t H arry a s h e p asse d lik e
e v ery one e ls e . H arry w en t th ro ugh th e d oor o ut o f th e G re at H all a n d fo und
h im se lf in a sm alle r ro om , lin ed w ith pain tin gs of w itc h es an d w iz ard s. A
h an dso m e f ir e w as r o arin g i n t h e f ir e p la ce o pposite h im .
The fa ces in th e p ortr a its tu rn ed to lo ok a t h im a s h e e n te re d . H e sa w a
w iz en ed w itc h flit o ut o f th e fra m e o f h er p ic tu re a n d in to th e o ne n ex t to it,
w hic h c o nta in ed a w iz ard w ith a w alr u s m usta ch e. T he w iz en ed w itc h sta rte d

whis p erin g i n h is e ar.
Vik to r K ru m , C ed ric D ig gory , a n d F le u r D ela co ur w ere g ro uped a ro und t h e
fir e . T hey lo oked str a n gely im pre ssiv e, silh ouette d a g ain st th e fla m es. K ru m ,
hunch ed -u p a n d b ro odin g, w as le an in g a g ain st th e m an te lp ie ce, slig htly a p art
fro m th e o th er tw o. C ed ric w as s ta n din g w ith h is h an ds b eh in d h is b ack , s ta rin g
in to th e fir e . F le u r D ela co ur lo oked a ro und w hen H arry w alk ed in a n d th re w
back h er s h eet o f l o ng, s ilv ery h air.
“W hat i s i t? ” s h e s a id . “ D o z ey w an t u s b ack i n z e H all? ”
She th ought h e h ad c o m e to d eliv er a m essa g e. H arry d id n't k now h ow to
ex pla in w hat had ju st hap pen ed . H e ju st sto od th ere , lo okin g at th e th re e
ch am pio ns. I t s tr u ck h im h ow v ery t a ll a ll o f t h em w ere .
There w as a s o und o f s c u rry in g f e et b eh in d h im , a n d L udo B ag m an e n te re d
th e r o om . H e t o ok H arry b y t h e a rm a n d l e d h im f o rw ard .
“E xtr a o rd in ary !” he mutte re d , sq ueezin g Harry 's arm . “A bso lu te ly
ex tr a o rd in ary ! G en tle m en … la d y,” he ad ded , ap pro ach in g th e fir e sid e an d
ad dre ssin g th e o th er th re e. “ M ay I in tr o duce— in cre d ib le th ough it m ay s e em —
th e f o urth T riw iz ard c h am pio n?”
Vik to r K ru m s tr a ig hte n ed u p. H is s u rly f a ce d ark en ed a s h e s u rv ey ed H arry .
Ced ric lo oked n onplu sse d . H e lo oked f ro m B ag m an to H arry a n d b ack a g ain a s
th ough su re h e m ust h av e m is h eard w hat B ag m an h ad sa id . F le u r D ela co ur,
how ev er, to sse d h er h air , sm ilin g, an d sa id , “O h, v air y fu nny jo ke, M eeste r
Bag m an .”
“Jo ke?” B ag m an re p eate d , b ew ild ere d . “ N o, n o, n ot a t a ll! H arry 's n am e
ju st c am e o ut o f t h e G oble t o f F ir e !”
Kru m 's th ic k e y eb ro w s c o ntr a cte d s lig htly . C ed ric w as s till lo okin g p olite ly
bew ild ere d . F le u r f ro w ned .
“B ut ev id en tly zair 'a s been a m is ta k e,” sh e sa id co nte m ptu ously to
Bag m an . “ E c an not c o m pete . 'E i s t o o y oung.”
“W ell… it is a m azin g,” s a id B ag m an , r u bbin g h is s m ooth c h in a n d s m ilin g
dow n a t H arry . “ B ut, a s y ou k now , t h e a g e r e str ic tio n w as o nly i m pose d t h is y ear
as a n e x tr a s a fe ty m easu re . A nd a s h is n am e's c o m e o ut o f t h e g oble t… I m ean , I
don't th in k th ere c an b e a n y d uck in g o ut a t th is s ta g e… It's d ow n in th e ru le s,
you'r e o blig ed … H arry w ill j u st h av e t o d o t h e b est h e— ”
The d oor b eh in d th em o pen ed a g ain , a n d a la rg e g ro up o f p eo ple c am e in :
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore , fo llo w ed c lo se ly b y M r. C ro uch , P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff ,
Mad am e M ax im e, P ro fe sso r M cG onag all, a n d P ro fe sso r S nap e. H arry h eard th e
buzzin g of th e hundre d s of stu den ts on th e oth er sid e of th e w all, befo re
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all c lo se d t h e d oor.
“M ad am e M ax im e!” s a id F le u r a t o nce, s tr id in g o ver to h er h ead m is tr e ss.

“Z ey a re s a y in g z at z is l ittle b oy i s t o c o m pete a ls o !”
Som ew here u nder H arry 's n um b d is b elie f h e fe lt a rip ple o f a n ger. L ittle
boy?
Mad am e M ax im e h ad d ra w n h ers e lf u p t o h er f u ll, a n d c o nsid era b le , h eig ht.
The to p o f h er h an dso m e h ead b ru sh ed th e can dle -fille d ch an delie r, an d h er
gig an tic b la ck -s a tin b oso m s w elle d .
“W hat i s z e m ean in g o f z is , D um bly -d orr? ” s h e s a id i m perio usly . “ I'd r a th er
lik e to know th at m yse lf , D um ble d ore ,” sa id P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff . H e w as
wearin g a s te ely s m ile , a n d h is b lu e e y es w ere lik e c h ip s o f ic e. “ T w o H ogw arts
ch am pio ns? I d on't r e m em ber a n yone te llin g m e th e h ost s c h oo l is a llo w ed tw o
ch am pio ns— or h av e I n ot r e ad t h e r u le s c are fu lly e n ough?”
He g av e a s h ort a n d n asty l a u gh.
“C 'e st im possib le ,” s a id M ad am e M ax im e, w hose e n orm ous h an d w ith its
man y s u perb o pals w as r e stin g u pon F le u r's s h ould er. “ O gw arts c an not 'a v e tw o
ch am pio ns. I t i s m ost i n ju st.”
“W e w ere u nder t h e i m pre ssio n t h at y our A ge L in e w ould k eep o ut y ounger
co nte sta n ts , D um ble d ore ,” s a id K ark aro ff , h is s te ely s m ile s till in p la ce, th ough
his e y es w ere c o ld er th an e v er. “ O th erw is e , w e w ould , o f c o urs e , h av e b ro ught
alo ng a w id er s e le ctio n o f c an did ate s f ro m o ur o w n s c h ools .”
“It's n o o ne's f a u lt b ut P otte r's , K ark aro ff ,” s a id S nap e s o ftly . H is b la ck e y es
were alig ht with malic e. “D on't go bla m in g Dum ble d ore fo r Potte r's
dete rm in atio n to b re ak ru le s. H e h as b een c ro ssin g lin es e v er s in ce h e a rriv ed
here — ”
“T han k you, S ev eru s,” sa id D um ble d ore fir m ly , an d S nap e w en t quie t,
th ough h is e y es still g lin te d m ale v ole n tly th ro ugh h is c u rta in o f g re asy b la ck
hair.
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore w as n ow lo okin g d ow n a t H arry , w ho lo oked rig ht
back a t h im , tr y in g to d is c ern th e e x pre ssio n o f th e e y es b eh in d th e h alf -m oon
sp ecta cle s.
“D id y ou p ut y our n am e i n to t h e G oble t o f F ir e , H arry ?” h e a sk ed c alm ly .
“N o,” s a id H arry . H e w as v ery a w are o f e v ery body w atc h in g h im c lo se ly .
Snap e m ad e a s o ft n ois e o f i m patie n t d is b elie f i n t h e s h ad ow s.
“D id y ou a sk a n o ld er s tu den t t o p ut i t i n to t h e G oble t o f F ir e f o r y ou?” s a id
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore , i g norin g S nap e.
“N o,” s a id H arry v eh em en tly .
“A h, b ut o f c o urs e 'e is ly in g!” c rie d M ad am e M ax im e. S nap e w as n ow
sh ak in g h is h ead , h is l ip c u rlin g.
“H e co uld n ot h av e cro sse d th e A ge L in e,” sa id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all
sh arp ly . “ I a m s u re w e a re a ll a g re ed o n t h at— ”

“D um bly -d orr m ust 'a v e m ad e a m is ta k e w iz ze lin e,” sa id M ad am e
Max im e, s h ru ggin g.
“It i s p ossib le , o f c o urs e ,” s a id D um ble d ore p olite ly .
“D um ble d ore , y ou k now p erfe ctly w ell y ou d id n ot m ak e a m is ta k e!” s a id
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all a n grily . “ R eally , w hat n onse n se ! H arry c o uld n ot h av e
cro sse d th e lin e h im se lf , a n d a s P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore b elie v es th at h e d id n ot
pers u ad e a n o ld er s tu den t to d o it f o r h im , I 'm s u re th at s h ould b e g ood e n ough
fo r e v ery body e ls e !”
She s h ot a v ery a n gry l o ok a t P ro fe sso r S nap e.
“M r. C ro uch … M r. B ag m an ,” sa id K ark aro ff , his voic e unctu ous once
more , “ y ou a re o ur— er— obje ctiv e j u dges. S ure ly y ou w ill a g re e t h at t h is i s m ost
ir re g ula r? ”
Bag m an w ip ed h is r o und, b oyis h f a ce w ith h is h an dkerc h ie f a n d lo oked a t
Mr. C ro uch , w ho w as s ta n din g o uts id e th e c ir c le o f th e fir e lig ht, h is fa ce h alf
hid den in s h ad ow . H e lo oked s lig htly e erie , th e h alf d ark ness m ak in g h im lo ok
much old er, giv in g him an alm ost sk ull- lik e ap peara n ce. W hen he sp oke,
how ev er, i t w as i n h is u su al c u rt v oic e.
“W e m ust fo llo w th e ru le s, an d th e ru le s sta te cle arly th at th ose p eo ple
whose n am es co m e o ut o f th e G oble t o f F ir e are b ound to co m pete in th e
to urn am en t.”
“W ell, B arty k now s th e ru le b ook b ack to fro nt,” sa id B ag m an , b eam in g
an d tu rn in g b ack to K ark aro ff a n d M ad am e M ax im e, a s th ough th e m atte r w as
now c lo se d .
“I in sis t u pon re su bm ittin g th e n am es o f th e re st o f m y stu den ts ,” sa id
Kark aro ff . H e h ad d ro pped h is u nctu ous t o ne a n d h is s m ile n ow . H is f a ce w ore a
very u gly lo ok in deed . “ Y ou w ill s e t u p th e G oble t o f F ir e o nce m ore , a n d w e
will c o ntin ue a d din g n am es u ntil e ach s c h ool h as tw o c h am pio ns. I t's o nly f a ir ,
Dum ble d ore .”
“B ut K ark aro ff , it d oesn 't w ork lik e th at,” sa id B ag m an . “ T he G oble t o f
Fir e 's j u st g one o ut— it w on't r e ig nite u ntil t h e s ta rt o f t h e n ex t t o urn am en t— ”
“in w hic h D urm str a n g w ill m ost certa in ly n ot b e co m petin g!” ex plo ded
Kark aro ff . “ A fte r a ll o ur m eetin gs a n d n eg otia tio ns a n d c o m pro m is e s, I little
ex pecte d s o m eth in g o f t h is n atu re t o o ccu r! I h av e h alf a m in d t o l e av e n ow !”
“E m pty th re at, K ark aro ff ,” g ro w le d a v oic e f ro m n ear th e d oor. “ Y ou c an 't
le av e y our ch am pio n n ow . H e's g ot to co m pete . T hey 'v e all g ot to co m pete .
Bin din g m ag ic al c o ntr a ct, l ik e D um ble d ore s a id . C onven ie n t, e h ?”
Moody h ad ju st en te re d th e ro om . H e lim ped to w ard th e fir e , an d w ith
ev ery r ig ht s te p h e t o ok, t h ere w as a l o ud c lu nk.
“C onven ie n t? ” s a id K ark aro ff . “ I'm a fra id I d on't u nders ta n d y ou, M oody.”

Harry c o uld te ll h e w as tr y in g to s o und d is d ain fu l, a s th ough w hat M oody
was s a y in g w as b are ly w orth h is n otic e, b ut h is h an ds g av e h im a w ay ; th ey h ad
balle d t h em se lv es i n to f is ts .
“D on't y ou?” s a id M oody q uie tly . “ It's v ery s im ple , K ark aro ff . S om eo ne p ut
Potte r's n am e i n t h at g oble t k now in g h e'd h av e t o c o m pete i f i t c am e o ut.”
“E vid en tly , so m eo ne 'o o w is h ed to g iv e 'O gw arts tw o b ite s a t z e a p ple !”
sa id M ad am e M ax im e.
“I q uite a g re e, M ad am e M ax im e,” s a id K ark aro ff , b ow in g t o h er. “ I s h all b e
lo dgin g co m pla in ts with th e M in is tr y of M ag ic an d th e In te rn atio nal
Confe d era tio n o f W iz ard s— ”
“If a n yone's g ot re aso n to c o m pla in , it's P otte r,” g ro w le d M oody, “ b ut…
fu nny t h in g… I d on't h ear h im s a y in g a w ord …
“W hy s h ould 'e c o m pla in ?” b urs t o ut F le u r D ela co ur, s ta m pin g h er f o ot. “ E
'a s z e c h an ce to c o m pete , 'a sn 't 'e ? W e 'a v e a ll b een 'o pin g to b e c h ose n fo r
week s an d w eek s! Z e h onor fo r o ur sc h ools ! A th ousa n d G alle o ns in p riz e
money — zis i s a c h an ce m an y w ould d ie f o r!”
“M ay be s o m eo ne's h opin g P otte r is g oin g to d ie fo r it,” s a id M oody, w ith
th e m ere st t r a ce o f a g ro w l.
An e x tr e m ely te n se s ile n ce f o llo w ed th ese w ord s. L udo B ag m an , w ho w as
lo okin g v ery a n xio us in deed , b ounced n erv ously u p a n d d ow n o n h is fe et a n d
sa id , “ M oody, o ld m an … w hat a t h in g t o s a y !”
“W e a ll k now P ro fe sso r M oody c o nsid ers th e m orn in g w aste d if h e h asn 't
dis c o vere d six p lo ts to m urd er h im b efo re lu nch tim e,” sa id K ark aro ff lo udly .
“A ppare n tly h e is n ow te ach in g h is s tu den ts to fe ar a ssa ssin atio n to o. A n o dd
quality in a D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts te ach er, D um ble d ore , b ut n o d oubt
you h ad y our r e aso ns.
“Im ag in in g th in gs, a m I? ” g ro w le d M oody. “ S eein g th in gs, e h ? It w as a
sk ille d w itc h o r w iz ard w ho p ut t h e b oy's n am e i n t h at g oble t…
“A h, w hat e v id en ce i s z ere o f z at? ” s a id M ad am e M ax im e, t h ro w in g u p h er
huge h an ds.
“B ecau se th ey h oodw in ked a v ery p ow erfu l m ag ic al o bje ct! ” s a id M oody.
“It w ould h av e n eed ed a n e x cep tio nally s tr o ng C onfu ndus C harm to b am boozle
th at g oble t in to fo rg ettin g th at o nly th re e s c h ools c o m pete in th e to urn am en t…
I'm g uessin g t h ey s u bm itte d P otte r's n am e u nder a f o urth s c h ool, t o m ak e s u re h e
was t h e o nly o ne i n h is c ate g ory … ”
“Y ou se em to hav e giv en th is a gre at deal of th ought, M oody,” sa id
Kark aro ff c o ld ly , “ an d a v ery in gen io us th eo ry it is — th ough o f c o urs e , I h eard
you r e cen tly g ot it in to y our h ead th at o ne o f y our b ir th day p re se n ts c o nta in ed a
cu nnin gly d is g uis e d b asilis k e g g, a n d s m ash ed i t t o p ie ces b efo re r e aliz in g i t w as

a c arria g e c lo ck . S o y ou'l l u nders ta n d i f w e d on't t a k e y ou e n tir e ly s e rio usly … ”
“T here a re t h ose w ho'l l t u rn i n nocen t o ccasio ns t o t h eir a d van ta g e,” M oody
re to rte d in a m en acin g v oic e. “ It's m y jo b to th in k th e w ay D ark w iz ard s d o,
Kark aro ff — as y ou o ught t o r e m em ber…
“A la sto r!” sa id D um ble d ore w arn in gly . H arry w ondere d fo r a m om en t
whom he w as sp eak in g to , but th en re aliz ed “M ad -E ye” co uld hard ly be
Moody's r e al f ir s t n am e. M oody f e ll s ile n t, t h ough s till s u rv ey in g K ark aro ff w ith
sa tis fa ctio n— Kark aro ff 's f a ce w as b urn in g.
“H ow th is s itu atio n a ro se , w e d o n ot k now ,” s a id D um ble d ore , s p eak in g to
ev ery one g ath ere d in th e ro om . “It se em s to m e, h ow ev er, th at w e h av e n o
ch oic e b ut to a ccep t it. B oth C ed ric a n d H arry h av e b een c h ose n to c o m pete in
th e T ourn am en t. T his , t h ere fo re , t h ey w ill d o…
“A h, b ut D um bly -d orr— ”
“M y dear M ad am e M ax im e, if you hav e an alte rn ativ e, I w ould be
delig hte d t o h ear i t.”
Dum ble d ore w aite d , b ut M ad am e M ax im e d id n ot s p eak , s h e m ere ly g la re d .
She w asn 't th e o nly o ne e ith er. S nap e lo oked f u rio us; K ark aro ff liv id ; B ag m an ,
how ev er, l o oked r a th er e x cite d .
“W ell, sh all w e c ra ck o n, th en ?” h e sa id , ru bbin g h is h an ds to geth er a n d
sm ilin g a ro und th e r o om . “ G ot to g iv e o ur c h am pio ns th eir in str u ctio ns, h av en 't
we? B arty , w an t t o d o t h e h onors ? ”
Mr. C ro uch s e em ed t o c o m e o ut o f a d eep r e v erie .
“Y es,” h e s a id , “ in str u ctio ns. Y es… t h e f ir s t t a sk … ”
He m oved f o rw ard in to th e f ir e lig ht. C lo se u p, H arry th ought h e lo oked ill.
There w ere d ark sh ad ow s b en eath h is e y es a n d a th in , p ap ery lo ok a b out h is
wrin kle d s k in t h at h ad n ot b een t h ere a t t h e Q uid ditc h W orld C up.
“T he f ir s t t a sk i s d esig ned t o t e st y our d arin g,” h e t o ld H arry , C ed ric , F le u r,
an d V ik to r, “ so w e a re n ot g oin g to b e te llin g y ou w hat it is . C oura g e in th e f a ce
of t h e u nknow n i s a n i m porta n t q uality i n a w iz ard … v ery i m porta n t.
“T he fir s t ta sk w ill ta k e p la ce o n N ovem ber th e tw en ty -fo urth , in fro nt o f
th e o th er s tu den ts a n d t h e p an el o f j u dges.
“T he c h am pio ns a re n ot p erm itte d to a sk fo r o r a ccep t h elp o f a n y k in d
fro m th eir te ach ers to c o m ple te th e ta sk s in th e to urn am en t. T he c h am pio ns w ill
fa ce th e fir s t ch alle n ge arm ed only w ith th eir w an ds. They w ill re ceiv e
in fo rm atio n ab out th e se co nd ta sk w hen th e fir s t is over. O win g to th e
dem an din g a n d tim e-c o nsu m in g n atu re o f th e to urn am en t, th e c h am pio ns a re
ex em pte d f ro m e n d-o f-y ear t e sts .”
Mr. C ro uch t u rn ed t o l o ok a t D um ble d ore .
“I t h in k t h at's a ll, i s i t, A lb us? ”

“I th in k s o ,” s a id D um ble d ore , w ho w as lo okin g a t M r. C ro uch w ith m ild
co ncern . “ A re y ou s u re y ou w ould n't l ik e t o s ta y a t H ogw arts t o nig ht, B arty ?”
“N o, D um ble d ore , I m ust g et b ack to th e M in is tr y ,” s a id M r. C ro uch . “ It is
a v ery b usy , v ery d if f ic u lt tim e a t th e m om en t… I'v e le ft y oung W eath erb y in
ch arg e… V ery e n th usia stic … a l ittle o vere n th usia stic , i f t r u th b e t o ld …
“Y ou'l l c o m e a n d h av e a d rin k b efo re y ou g o, a t l e ast? ” s a id D um ble d ore .
“C om e o n, B arry , I 'm s ta y in g!” s a id B ag m an b rig htly . “ It's a ll h ap pen in g a t
Hogw arts n ow , y ou k now , m uch m ore e x citin g h ere t h an a t t h e o ff ic e!”
“I t h in k n ot, L udo,” s a id C ro uch w ith a t o uch o f h is o ld i m patie n ce.
“P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff — Mad am e M ax im e— a n ig htc ap ?” s a id D um ble d ore .
But M ad am e M ax im e h ad a lr e ad y p ut h er a rm a ro und F le u r's s h ould ers a n d
was l e ad in g h er s w if tly o ut o f t h e r o om . H arry c o uld h ear t h em b oth t a lk in g v ery
fa st i n F re n ch a s t h ey w en t o ff i n to t h e G re at H all. K ark aro ff b eck oned t o K ru m ,
an d t h ey, t o o, e x ite d , t h ough i n s ile n ce.
“H arry , C ed ric , I s u ggest y ou g o u p to b ed ,” s a id D um ble d ore , s m ilin g a t
both o f t h em . “ I a m s u re G ry ff in dor a n d H uff le p uff a re w aitin g to c ele b ra te w ith
you, a n d it w ould b e a s h am e to d ep riv e th em o f th is e x celle n t e x cu se to m ak e a
gre at d eal o f m ess a n d n ois e .”
Harry g la n ced a t C ed ric , w ho n odded , a n d t h ey l e ft t o geth er.
The G re at H all w as d ese rte d n ow ; th e c an dle s h ad b urn ed lo w , g iv in g th e
ja g ged s m ile s o f t h e p um pkin s a n e erie , f lic k erin g q uality .
“S o,” sa id C ed ric , w ith a slig ht sm ile . “ W e'r e p la y in g a g ain st e ach o th er
ag ain !”
“I s 'p ose ,” s a id H arry . H e r e ally c o uld n't t h in k o f a n yth in g t o s a y. T he i n sid e
of h is h ead se em ed to b e in c o m ple te d is a rra y, a s th ough h is b ra in h ad b een
ra n sa ck ed .
“S o… te ll m e… ” s a id C ed ric a s th ey r e ach ed th e e n tr a n ce h all, w hic h w as
now lit o nly b y to rc h es in th e a b se n ce o f th e G oble t o f F ir e . “ H ow d id y ou g et
your n am e i n ?”
“I d id n't ,” s a id H arry , s ta rin g u p a t h im . “ I d id n't p ut it in . I w as te llin g th e
tr u th .”
“A h… okay,” sa id C ed ric . H arry co uld te ll C ed ric did n't belie v e him .
“W ell… s e e y ou, t h en .”
In ste ad o f g oin g u p th e m arb le sta ir c ase , C ed ric h ead ed fo r a d oor to its
rig ht. H arry s to od lis te n in g to h im g oin g d ow n th e s to ne s te p s b ey ond it, th en ,
slo w ly , h e s ta rte d t o c lim b t h e m arb le o nes.
Was a n yone e x cep t R on a n d H erm io ne g oin g to b elie v e h im , o r w ould th ey
all th in k h e'd p ut h im se lf in fo r th e to urn am en t? Y et h ow c o uld a n yone th in k
th at, w hen he w as fa cin g co m petito rs w ho'd had th re e years ' m ore m ag ic al

ed ucatio n th an h e h ad — when h e w as n ow fa cin g ta sk s th at n ot o nly so unded
very d an gero us, b ut w hic h w ere to b e p erfo rm ed in f ro nt o f h undre d s o f p eo ple ?
Yes, h e'd th ought a b out it… h e'd fa n ta siz ed a b out it… b ut it h ad b een a jo ke,
re ally , a n i d le s o rt o f d re am … h e'd n ev er r e ally , s e rio usly c o nsid ere d e n te rin g..
But s o m eo ne e ls e h ad c o nsid ere d it… s o m eo ne e ls e h ad w an te d h im in th e
to urn am en t, a n d h ad m ad e s u re h e w as e n te re d . W hy? T o g iv e h im a tr e at? H e
did n't t h in k s o , s o m eh ow …
To s e e h im m ak e a f o ol o f h im se lf ? W ell, t h ey w ere l ik ely t o g et t h eir w is h ..
But t o g et h im k ille d ?
Was M oody ju st b ein g h is u su al p ara n oid s e lf ? C ould n't s o m eo ne h av e p ut
Harry 's n am e in th e g oble t a s a tr ic k , a p ra ctic al jo ke? D id a n yone re ally w an t
him d ead ?
Harry w as a b le to a n sw er th at a t o nce. Y es, so m eo ne w an te d h im d ead ,
so m eo ne had w an te d him dead ev er sin ce he had been a year old … L ord
Vold em ort. B ut h ow c o uld V old em ort h av e e n su re d th at H arry 's n am e g ot in to
th e G oble t o f F ir e ? V old em ort w as su ppose d to b e fa r a w ay, in so m e d is ta n t
co untr y , i n h id in g, a lo ne… f e eb le a n d p ow erle ss…
Yet in th at d re am h e h ad h ad , ju st b efo re h e h ad aw oken w ith h is sc ar
hurtin g, V old em ort h ad n ot b een a lo ne… h e h ad b een ta lk in g to W orm ta il…
plo ttin g H arry 's m urd er.
Harry g ot a sh ock to fin d h im se lf fa cin g th e F at L ad y alr e ad y. H e h ad
bare ly n otic ed w here h is f e et w ere c arry in g h im . I t w as a ls o a s u rp ris e t o s e e t h at
sh e w as n ot a lo ne in h er fra m e. T he w iz en ed w itc h w ho h ad flitte d in to h er
neig hbor's p ain tin g w hen h e h ad jo in ed th e ch am pio ns d ow nsta ir s w as n ow
sittin g s m ugly b esid e th e F at L ad y. S he m ust h av e d ash ed th ro ugh e v ery p ic tu re
lin in g s e v en s ta ir c ase s t o r e ach h ere b efo re h im . B oth s h e a n d t h e F at L ad y w ere
lo okin g d ow n a t h im w ith t h e k een est i n te re st.
“W ell, w ell, w ell,” sa id th e F at L ad y, “V io le t's ju st to ld m e ev ery th in g.
Who's j u st b een c h ose n a s s c h ool c h am pio n, t h en ?”
“B ald erd ash ,” s a id H arry d ully .
“It m ost c erta in ly i s n 't ! ” s a id t h e p ale w itc h i n dig nan tly .
“N o, n o, V i, i t's t h e p assw ord ,” s a id t h e F at L ad y s o oth in gly , a n d s h e s w ung
fo rw ard o n h er h in ges t o l e t H arry i n to t h e c o m mon r o om .
The b la st o f n ois e th at m et H arry 's e ars w hen th e p ortr a it o pen ed a lm ost
knock ed h im b ack w ard . N ex t th in g h e k new , h e w as b ein g w re n ch ed in sid e th e
co m mon ro om b y a b out a d ozen p air s o f h an ds, a n d w as fa cin g th e w hole o f
Gry ff in dor H ouse , a ll o f w hom w ere s c re am in g, a p pla u din g, a n d w his tlin g.
“Y ou sh ould 'v e to ld us you'd en te re d !” bello w ed F re d ; he lo oked half
an noyed , h alf d eep ly i m pre sse d .

“H ow d id y ou d o i t w ith out g ettin g a b eard ? B rillia n t! ” r o are d G eo rg e.
“I d id n't ,” H arry s a id . “ I d on't k now h ow — ”
But A ngelin a h ad n ow s w ooped d ow n u pon h im ; “ O h if it c o uld n't b e m e,
at l e ast i t's a G ry ff in dor— ”
“Y ou'l l b e a b le to p ay b ack D ig gory f o r th at la st Q uid ditc h m atc h , H arry !”
sh rie k ed K atie B ell, a n oth er o f t h e G ry ff in dor C hase rs .
“W e'v e g ot f o od, H arry , c o m e a n d h av e s o m e— ”
“I'm n ot h ungry , I h ad e n ough a t t h e f e ast— ”
But n obody w an te d to h ear th at h e w asn 't h ungry ; n obody w an te d to h ear
th at h e h ad n't p ut h is n am e in th e g oble t; n ot o ne s in gle p ers o n s e em ed to h av e
notic ed t h at h e w asn 't a t a ll i n t h e m ood t o c ele b ra te … L ee J o rd an h ad u nearth ed
a G ry ff in dor b an ner f ro m s o m ew here , a n d h e i n sis te d o n d ra p in g i t a ro und H arry
lik e a c lo ak . H arry c o uld n't g et a w ay ; w hen ev er h e tr ie d to sid le o ver to th e
sta ir c ase u p to th e d orm ito rie s, th e cro w d aro und h im clo se d ra n ks, fo rc in g
an oth er b utte rb eer o n h im , s tu ff in g c ris p s a n d p ean uts i n to h is h an ds… E very one
wan te d t o k now h ow h e h ad d one i t, h ow h e h ad t r ic k ed D um ble d ore 's A ge L in e
an d m an ag ed t o g et h is n am e i n to t h e g oble t…
“I d id n't ,” h e s a id , o ver a n d o ver a g ain , “ I d on't k now h ow i t h ap pen ed .”
But f o r a ll th e n otic e a n yone to ok, h e m ig ht ju st a s w ell n ot h av e a n sw ere d
at a ll.
“I'm tir e d !” h e b ello w ed fin ally , a fte r n early h alf a n h our. “ N o, s e rio usly ,
Geo rg e— I'm g oin g t o b ed — ”
He w an te d m ore th an a n yth in g to fin d R on a n d H erm io ne, to fin d a b it o f
sa n ity , b ut n eith er o f th em s e em ed to b e in th e c o m mon r o om . I n sis tin g th at h e
need ed to sle ep , an d alm ost fla tte n in g th e little C re ev ey bro th ers as th ey
atte m pte d to w ay la y h im at th e fo ot o f th e sta ir s , H arry m an ag ed to sh ak e
ev ery one o ff a n d c lim b u p t o t h e d orm ito ry a s f a st a s h e c o uld .
To h is g re at re lie f, h e fo und R on w as ly in g o n h is b ed in th e o th erw is e
em pty d orm ito ry , s till f u lly d re sse d . H e l o oked u p w hen H arry s la m med t h e d oor
beh in d h im .
“W here 'v e y ou b een ?” H arry s a id .
“O h h ello ,” s a id R on.
He w as grin nin g, but it w as a very odd, str a in ed so rt of grin . H arry
su dden ly b ecam e a w are th at h e w as s till w earin g th e s c arle t G ry ff in dor b an ner
th at L ee h ad tie d a ro und h im . H e h aste n ed to ta k e it o ff , b ut it w as k notte d v ery
tig htly . R on la y o n th e b ed w ith out m ovin g, w atc h in g H arry s tr u ggle to r e m ove
it.
“S o,” h e s a id , w hen H arry h ad fin ally re m oved th e b an ner a n d th ro w n it
in to a c o rn er. “ C ongra tu la tio ns.”

“W hat d 'y ou m ean , c o ngra tu la tio ns? ” s a id H arry , s ta rin g a t R on. T here w as
defin ite ly s o m eth in g w ro ng w ith th e w ay R on w as s m ilin g: It w as m ore lik e a
grim ace.
“W ell… n o o ne e ls e g ot a cro ss th e A ge L in e,” s a id R on. “ N ot e v en F re d
an d G eo rg e. W hat d id y ou u se — th e I n vis ib ility C lo ak ?”
“T he In vis ib ility C lo ak w ould n't h av e g ot m e o ver th at lin e,” sa id H arry
slo w ly .
“O h r ig ht,” s a id R on. “ I th ought y ou m ig ht'v e to ld m e if it w as th e c lo ak …
becau se it w ould 'v e c o vere d b oth o f u s, w ould n't it? B ut y ou f o und a n oth er w ay,
did y ou?”
“L is te n ,” sa id H arry , “ I d id n't p ut m y n am e in th at g oble t. S om eo ne e ls e
must'v e d one i t.”
Ron r a is e d h is e y eb ro w s.
“W hat w ould t h ey d o t h at f o r? ”
“I d unno,” s a id H arry . H e f e lt i t w ould s o und v ery m elo dra m atic t o s a y, “ T o
kill m e.”
Ron's e y eb ro w s r o se s o h ig h th at th ey w ere in d an ger o f d is a p pearin g in to
his h air.
“It's o kay, y ou k now , y ou c an te ll m e th e tr u th ,” h e s a id . “ If y ou d on't w an t
ev ery one e ls e to k now , fin e, b ut I d on't k now w hy y ou'r e b oth erin g to lie , y ou
did n't g et in to tr o uble f o r it, d id y ou? T hat f rie n d o f th e F at L ad y's , th at V io le t,
sh e's a lr e ad y to ld u s a ll D um ble d ore 's le ttin g y ou e n te r. A th ousa n d G alle o ns
priz e m oney, e h ? A nd y ou d on't h av e t o d o e n d-o f-y ear t e sts e ith er… ”
“I d id n't p ut m y n am e i n t h at g oble t! ” s a id H arry , s ta rtin g t o f e el a n gry .
“Y eah , o kay,” s a id R on, in e x actly th e s a m e s c ep tic al to ne a s C ed ric . “ O nly
you s a id th is m orn in g y ou'd h av e d one it la st n ig ht, a n d n o o ne w ould 'v e s e en
you… I 'm n ot s tu pid , y ou k now .”
“Y ou'r e d oin g a r e ally g ood i m pre ssio n o f i t,” H arry s n ap ped .
“Y eah ?” s a id R on, a n d th ere w as n o tr a ce o f a g rin , f o rc ed o r o th erw is e , o n
his f a ce n ow . “ Y ou w an t to g et to b ed , H arry . I e x pect y ou'l l n eed to b e u p e arly
to m orro w f o r a p hoto -c all o r s o m eth in g.”
He w re n ch ed th e han gin gs sh ut aro und his fo ur- p oste r, le av in g H arry
sta n din g t h ere b y t h e d oor, s ta rin g a t t h e d ark r e d v elv et c u rta in s, n ow h id in g o ne
of t h e f e w p eo ple h e h ad b een s u re w ould b elie v e h im .

C H APT ER E IG HTEEN
T H E W EIG HIN G O F T H E W ANDS
When H arry w oke up on S unday m orn in g, it to ok him a m om en t to
r e m em ber w hy he fe lt so m is e ra b le an d w orrie d . T hen th e m em ory of th e
p re v io us n ig ht r o lle d o ver h im . H e s a t u p a n d r ip ped b ack t h e c u rta in s o f h is o w n
f o ur- p oste r, in te n din g to ta lk to R on, to f o rc e R on to b elie v e h im — only to f in d
t h at R on's b ed w as e m pty ; h e h ad o bvio usly g one d ow n t o b re ak fa st.
Harry d re sse d a n d w en t d ow n th e s p ir a l s ta ir c ase in to th e c o m mon ro om .
T he m om en t h e a p peare d , th e p eo ple w ho h ad a lr e ad y fin is h ed b re ak fa st b ro ke
i n to a p pla u se a g ain . T he p ro sp ect o f g oin g d ow n in to th e G re at H all a n d f a cin g
t h e re st o f th e G ry ff in dors , all tr e atin g h im lik e so m e so rt o f h ero , w as n ot
i n vitin g; it w as th at, h ow ev er, o r s ta y h ere a n d a llo w h im se lf to b e c o rn ere d b y
t h e C re ev ey b ro th ers , w ho w ere b oth b eck onin g f ra n tic ally to h im to jo in th em .
H e w alk ed r e so lu te ly o ver to th e p ortr a it h ole , p ush ed it o pen , c lim bed o ut o f it,
a n d f o und h im se lf f a ce-to -fa ce w ith H erm io ne.
“H ello ,” s h e s a id , h old in g u p a s ta ck o f to ast, w hic h s h e w as c arry in g in a
n ap kin . “ I b ro ught y ou t h is … W an t t o g o f o r a w alk ?”
“G ood i d ea,” s a id H arry g ra te fu lly .
They w en t d ow nsta ir s , c ro sse d th e e n tr a n ce h all q uic k ly w ith out lo okin g in
a t th e G re at H all, a n d w ere s o on s tr id in g a cro ss th e la w n to w ard th e la k e, w here
t h e D urm str a n g s h ip w as m oore d , r e fle cte d b la ck ly in th e w ate r. I t w as a c h illy
m orn in g, a n d th ey k ep t m ovin g, m unch in g th eir to ast, a s H arry to ld H erm io ne
e x actly w hat h ad h ap pen ed a fte r h e h ad l e ft t h e G ry ff in dor t a b le t h e n ig ht b efo re .
T o h is i m men se r e lie f, H erm io ne a ccep te d h is s to ry w ith out q uestio n.
“W ell, o f c o urs e I k new y ou h ad n't e n te re d y ours e lf ,” s h e s a id w hen h e'd
f in is h ed te llin g h er a b out th e s c en e in th e c h am ber o ff th e H all. “ T he lo ok o n
y our fa ce w hen D um ble d ore re ad o ut y our n am e! B ut th e q uestio n is , w ho d id
p ut it in ? B ecau se M oody's rig ht, H arry … I d on't th in k a n y s tu den t c o uld h av e
d one i t… t h ey 'd n ev er b e a b le t o f o ol t h e G oble t, o r g et o ver D um ble d ore 's — ”
“H av e y ou s e en R on?” H arry i n te rru pte d .
Herm io ne h esita te d .
“E rm … y es… h e w as a t b re ak fa st,” s h e s a id .
“D oes h e s till t h in k I e n te re d m yse lf ? ”
“W ell… n o, I d on't t h in k s o … n ot r e ally ,” s a id H erm io ne a w kw ard ly .
“W hat's t h at s u ppose d t o m ean , 'n ot r e ally '? ”
“O h H arry , i s n 't i t o bvio us? ” H erm io ne s a id d esp air in gly . “ H e's j e alo us!”

“Je alo us? ” H arry s a id in cre d ulo usly . “ Je alo us o f w hat? H e w an ts to m ak e a
pra t o f h im se lf i n f ro nt o f t h e w hole s c h ool, d oes h e?”
“L ook,” s a id H erm io ne p atie n tly , “ it's a lw ay s y ou w ho g ets a ll t h e a tte n tio n,
you k now it is . I k now it's n ot y our f a u lt,” s h e a d ded q uic k ly , s e ein g H arry o pen
his m outh f u rio usly . “ I k now y ou d on't a sk f o r i t… b ut— well— you k now , R on's
got a ll t h ose b ro th ers t o c o m pete a g ain st a t h om e, a n d y ou'r e h is b est f rie n d, a n d
you'r e r e ally f a m ous— he's a lw ay s s h unte d t o o ne s id e w hen ev er p eo ple s e e y ou,
an d h e p uts u p w ith it, a n d h e n ev er m en tio ns it, b ut I s u ppose th is is ju st o ne
tim e t o o m an y…
“G re at,” s a id H arry b itte rly . “ R eally g re at. T ell h im fro m m e I'l l s w ap a n y
tim e h e w an ts . T ell h im fro m m e h e's w elc o m e to it… P eo ple g aw pin g a t m y
fo re h ead e v ery w here I g o… ”
“I'm n ot te ilin g h im a n yth in g,” H erm io ne s a id s h ortly . “ T ell h im y ours e lf .
It's t h e o nly w ay t o s o rt t h is o ut.”
“I'm n ot r u nnin g a ro und a fte r h im t r y in g t o m ak e h im g ro w u p!” H arry s a id ,
so lo udly th at s e v era l o w ls in a n earb y tr e e to ok flig ht in a la rm . “ M ay be h e'l l
belie v e I 'm n ot e n jo yin g m yse lf o nce I 'v e g ot m y n eck b ro ken o r— ”
“T hat's n ot fu nny,” sa id H erm io ne q uie tly . “ T hat's n ot fu nny a t a ll.” S he
lo oked e x tr e m ely a n xio us. “ H arry , I 'v e b een t h in kin g— you k now w hat w e'v e g ot
to d o, d on't y ou? S tr a ig ht a w ay, t h e m om en t w e g et b ack t o t h e c astle ?”
“Y eah , g iv e R on a g ood k ic k u p t h e— ”
“W rite to S ir iu s. Y ou'v e g ot to te ll h im w hat's h ap pen ed . H e a sk ed y ou to
keep h im p oste d o n e v ery th in g th at's g oin g o n a t H ogw arts … I t's a lm ost a s if h e
ex pecte d s o m eth in g lik e th is to h ap pen . I b ro ught s o m e p arc h m en t a n d a q uill
out w ith m e— ”
“C om e o ff it,” sa id H arry , lo okin g a ro und to c h eck th at th ey c o uld n't b e
overh eard , b ut th e g ro unds w ere q uite d ese rte d . “ H e c am e b ack to th e c o untr y
ju st b ecau se m y s c ar tw in ged . H e'l l p ro bab ly c o m e b urs tin g r ig ht in to th e c astle
if I t e ll h im s o m eo ne's e n te re d m e i n t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t— ”
“H e'd w an t y ou to te ll h im ,” s a id H erm io ne s te rn ly . “ H e's g oin g to f in d o ut
an yw ay.”
“H ow ?”
“H arry , th is is n 't g oin g to b e k ep t q uie t,” sa id H erm io ne, v ery se rio usly .
“T his to urn am en t's fa m ous, a n d y ou'r e fa m ous. I'l l b e re ally su rp ris e d if th ere
is n 't a n yth in g i n t h e D aily P ro phet a b out y ou c o m petin g… Y ou'r e a lr e ad y i n h alf
th e b ooks a b out Y ou-K now -W ho, y ou k now … a n d S ir iu s w ould ra th er h ear it
fro m y ou, I k now h e w ould .”
“O kay, o kay, I 'l l w rite to h im ,” s a id H arry , th ro w in g h is la st p ie ce o f to ast
in to t h e l a k e. T hey b oth s to od a n d w atc h ed i t f lo atin g t h ere f o r a m om en t, b efo re

a la rg e te n ta cle ro se o ut o f th e w ate r a n d s c o oped it b en eath th e s u rfa ce. T hen
th ey r e tu rn ed t o t h e c astle .
“W hose o w l a m I g oin g to u se ?” H arry s a id a s th ey c lim bed th e s ta ir s . “ H e
to ld m e n ot t o u se H ed w ig a g ain .”
“A sk R on i f y ou c an b orro w — ”
“I'm n ot a sk in g R on f o r a n yth in g,” H arry s a id f la tly .
“W ell, b orro w o ne o f th e sc h ool o w ls , th en , a n yone c an u se th em ,” sa id
Herm io ne.
They w en t u p to th e O wle ry . H erm io ne g av e H arry a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t, a
quill, a n d a b ottle o f in k, th en s tr o lle d a ro und th e lo ng lin es o f p erc h es, lo okin g
at a ll t h e d if f e re n t o w ls , w hile H arry s a t d ow n a g ain st a w all a n d w ro te h is l e tte r.
Dear S ir iu s,
You to ld m e to k eep y ou p oste d o n w hat's h ap pen in g a t H ogw arts , s o h ere
goes— I d on't k now if y ou'v e h eard , b ut th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t's h ap pen in g
th is y ear a n d o n S atu rd ay n ig ht I g ot p ic k ed a s a fo urth c h am pio n. I d on't w ho
put m y nam e in th e G oble t of F ir e , becau se I did n't . T he oth er H ogw arts
ch am pio n i s C ed ric D ig gory , f ro m H uff le p uff
He p au se d a t th is p oin t, th in kin g. H e h ad a n u rg e to s a y s o m eth in g a b out
th e la rg e w eig ht o f a n xie ty th at s e em ed to h av e s e ttle d in sid e h is c h est s in ce la st
nig ht, b ut h e c o uld n't t h in k h ow t o t r a n sla te t h is i n to w ord s, s o h e s im ply d ip ped
his q uill b ack i n to t h e i n k b ottle a n d w ro te ,
Hope y ou'r e o kay, a n d B uck beak — Harry
“F in is h ed ,” h e to ld H erm io ne, g ettin g to h is f e et a n d b ru sh in g s tr a w o ff h is
ro bes. A t t h is , H ed w ig f lu tte re d d ow n o nto h is s h ould er a n d h eld o ut h er l e g .
“I c an 't u se y ou,” H arry to ld h er, lo okin g a ro und f o r th e s c h ool o w ls . “ I'v e
got t o u se o ne o f t h ese .”
Hed w ig g av e a v ery lo ud h oot a n d to ok o ff s o s u dden ly th at h er ta lo ns c u t
in to h is s h ould er. S he k ep t h er b ack to H arry a ll th e tim e h e w as ty in g h is le tte r
to th e le g o f a la rg e b arn o w l. W hen th e b arn o w l h ad f lo w n o ff , H arry r e ach ed
out to s tr o ke H ed w ig , b ut s h e c lic k ed h er b eak f u rio usly a n d s o are d u p in to th e
ra fte rs o ut o f r e ach .
“F ir s t R on, t h en y ou,” H arry s a id a n grily . “ T his i s n 't m y f a u lt.”
If H arry h ad t h o ught t h at m atte rs w ould i m pro ve o nce e v ery one g ot u se d t o
th e i d ea o f h im b ein g c h am pio n, t h e f o llo w in g d ay s h ow ed h im h ow m is ta k en h e
was. H e c o uld n o l o nger a v oid t h e r e st o f t h e s c h ool o nce h e w as b ack a t l e sso ns
—an d it w as c le ar th at th e re st o f th e s c h ool, ju st lik e th e G ry ff in dors , th ought
Harry h ad e n te re d h im se lf f o r th e to urn am en t. U nlik e th e G ry ff in dors , h ow ev er,
th ey d id n ot s e em i m pre sse d .
The H uff le p uff s , w ho w ere u su ally o n e x celle n t t e rm s w ith t h e G ry ff in dors ,

had t u rn ed r e m ark ab ly c o ld t o w ard t h e w hole l o t o f t h em . O ne H erb olo gy l e sso n
was e n ough to d em onstr a te th is . I t w as p la in th at th e H uff le p uff s f e lt th at H arry
had s to le n t h eir c h am pio n's g lo ry ; a f e elin g e x acerb ate d , p erh ap s, b y t h e f a ct t h at
Huff le p uff H ouse v ery r a re ly g ot a n y g lo ry , a n d th at C ed ric w as o ne o f th e f e w
who h ad e v er g iv en t h em a n y, h av in g b eate n G ry ff in dor o nce a t Q uid ditc h . E rn ie
Macm illa n a n d Ju stin F in ch F le tc h le y, w ith w hom H arry n orm ally g ot o n v ery
well, d id n ot ta lk to h im e v en th ough th ey w ere r e p ottin g B ouncin g B ulb s a t th e
sa m e t r a y — th ough t h ey d id l a u gh r a th er u nple asa n tly w hen o ne o f t h e B ouncin g
Bulb s w rig gle d fre e fro m H arry 's g rip a n d s m ack ed h im h ard in th e fa ce. R on
wasn 't ta lk in g to H arry e ith er. H erm io ne s a t b etw een th em , m ak in g v ery f o rc ed
co nvers a tio n, b ut th ough b oth a n sw ere d h er n orm ally , th ey a v oid ed m ak in g e y e
co nta ct w ith e ach o th er. H arry th ought e v en P ro fe sso r S pro ut se em ed d is ta n t
with h im — but t h en , s h e w as H ead o f H uff le p uff H ouse .
He w ould hav e been lo okin g fo rw ard to se ein g H ag rid under norm al
cir c u m sta n ces, b ut C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s m ean t s e ein g th e S ly th erin s to o—
th e f ir s t t im e h e w ould c o m e f a ce-to -fa ce w ith t h em s in ce b eco m in g c h am pio n.
Pre d ic ta b ly , M alf o y a rriv ed a t H ag rid 's c ab in w ith h is f a m ilia r s n eer f ir m ly
in p la ce.
“A h, lo ok, boys, it's th e ch am pio n,” he sa id to C ra b be an d G oyle th e
mom en t h e g ot w ith in e ars h ot o f H arry . “ G ot y our a u to gra p h b ooks? B ette r g et a
sig natu re n ow , b ecau se I d oubt h e's g oin g to b e a ro und m uch lo nger… H alf th e
Triw iz ard c h am pio ns h av e d ie d … h ow lo ng d 'y ou re ck on y ou'r e g oin g to la st,
Potte r? T en m in ute s i n to t h e f ir s t t a sk 's m y b et.”
Cra b be a n d G oyle g uff a w ed s y co phan tic ally , b ut M alf o y h ad to s to p th ere ,
becau se H ag rid e m erg ed f ro m th e b ack o f h is c ab in b ala n cin g a te ete rin g to w er
of c ra te s, e ach c o nta in in g a v ery l a rg e B la st- E nded S kre w t. T o t h e c la ss's h orro r,
Hag rid p ro ceed ed to e x pla in th at th e re aso n th e sk re w ts h ad b een k illin g o ne
an oth er w as a n e x cess o f p en t- u p e n erg y, a n d t h at t h e s o lu tio n w ould b e f o r e ach
stu den t to fix a le ash o n a s k re w t a n d ta k e it fo r a s h ort w alk . T he o nly g ood
th in g a b out t h is p la n w as t h at i t d is tr a cte d M alf o y c o m ple te ly .
“T ak e th is th in g f o r a w alk ?” h e r e p eate d in d is g ust, s ta rin g in to o ne o f th e
boxes. “ A nd w here e x actly a re w e s u ppose d to f ix th e le ash ? A ro und th e s tin g,
th e b la stin g e n d, o r t h e s u ck er? ”
“R oun' th e m id dle ,” s a id H ag rid , d em onstr a tin g. “ E r— yeh m ig ht w an t te r
put o n y er d ra g on-h id e g lo ves, ju s' as an ex tr a p re cau tio n, lik e. H arry — you
co m e h ere a n ' h elp m e w ith t h is b ig o ne…
Hag rid 's r e al in te n tio n, h ow ev er, w as to ta lk to H arry a w ay f ro m th e r e st o f
th e cla ss. H e w aite d u ntil ev ery one els e h ad se t o ff w ith th eir sk re w ts , th en
tu rn ed to H arry an d sa id , v ery se rio usly , “S o— yer co m petin ', H arry . In th e

to urn am en t. S ch ool c h am pio n.”
“O ne o f t h e c h am pio ns,” H arry c o rre cte d h im .
Hag rid 's b eetle -b la ck e y es l o oked v ery a n xio us u nder h is w ild e y eb ro w s.
“N o i d ea w ho p ut y eh i n f e r i t, H arry ?”
“Y ou b elie v e I d id n't d o it, th en ?” s a id H arry , c o ncealin g w ith d if f ic u lty th e
ru sh o f g ra titu de h e f e lt a t H ag rid 's w ord s.
“C ours e I d o,” H ag rid g ru nte d . “ Y eh s a y i t w asn ' y ou, a n ' I b elie v e y eh — an '
Dum ble d ore b elie v es y er, a n ' a ll.”
“W is h I k new w ho d id d o i t,” s a id H arry b itte rly .
The p air o f th em lo oked o ut o ver th e la w n; th e c la ss w as w id ely s c atte re d
now , a n d a ll in g re at d if f ic u lty . T he s k re w ts w ere n ow o ver th re e f e et lo ng, a n d
ex tr e m ely p ow erfu l. N o lo nger sh ell- le ss a n d c o lo rle ss, th ey h ad d ev elo ped a
kin d o f th ic k , g ra y is h , sh in y arm or. T hey lo oked lik e a cro ss b etw een g ia n t
sc o rp io ns an d elo ngate d cra b s— but still w ith out re co gniz ab le h ead s o r ey es.
They h ad b eco m e i m men se ly s tr o ng a n d v ery h ard t o c o ntr o l.
“L ook lik e th ey 'r e hav in ' fu n, don' th ey ?” H ag rid sa id hap pily . H arry
assu m ed h e w as ta lk in g ab out th e sk re w ts , b ecau se h is cla ssm ate s certa in ly
were n 't ; e v ery n ow a n d th en , w ith a n a la rm in g b an g, o ne o f th e s k re w ts ' e n ds
would e x plo de, c au sin g it to sh oot fo rw ard se v era l y ard s, a n d m ore th an o ne
pers o n w as b ein g d ra g ged a lo ng o n th eir s to m ach , tr y in g d esp era te ly to g et b ack
on t h eir f e et.
“A h, I d on' k now , H arry ,” H ag rid s ig hed s u dden ly , lo okin g b ack d ow n a t
him w ith a w orrie d ex pre ssio n on his fa ce. “S ch ool ch am pio n… ev ery th in '
se em s t e r h ap pen t e r y ou, d oesn ' i t? ”
Harry d id n't a n sw er. Y es, e v ery th in g d id s e em to h ap pen to h im … th at w as
more o r le ss w hat H erm io ne h ad s a id a s th ey h ad w alk ed a ro und th e la k e, a n d
th at w as t h e r e aso n, a cco rd in g t o h er, t h at R on w as n o l o nger t a lk in g t o h im .
The n ex t f e w d ay s w ere s o m e o f H arry 's w ors t a t H ogw arts . T he c lo se st h e
had e v er c o m e to fe elin g lik e th is h ad b een d urin g th ose m onth s, in h is s e co nd
year, w hen a la rg e p art o f th e s c h ool h ad s u sp ecte d h im o f a tta ck in g h is fe llo w
stu den ts . B ut R on h ad b een o n h is s id e th en . H e th ought h e c o uld h av e c o ped
with th e re st o f th e s c h ool's b eh av io r if h e c o uld ju st h av e h ad R on b ack a s a
frie n d, b ut h e w asn 't g oin g to tr y a n d p ers u ad e R on to ta lk to h im if R on d id n't
wan t to . N ev erth ele ss, it w as lo nely w ith d is lik e p ourin g in o n h im fro m a ll
sid es.
He c o uld u nders ta n d th e H uff le p uff s ' a ttitu de, e v en if h e d id n't lik e it; th ey
had t h eir o w n c h am pio n t o s u pport. H e e x pecte d n oth in g l e ss t h an v ic io us i n su lts
fro m th e S ly th erin s— he w as hig hly unpopula r th ere an d alw ay s had been ,
becau se h e h ad h elp ed G ry ff in dor b eat th em s o o fte n , b oth a t Q uid ditc h a n d in

th e In te r- H ouse C ham pio nsh ip . B ut h e h ad h oped th e R av en cla w s m ig ht h av e
fo und it in th eir h earts to su pport h im as m uch as C ed ric . H e w as w ro ng,
how ev er. M ost R av en cla w s s e em ed to th in k th at h e h ad b een d esp era te to e arn
him se lf a b it m ore f a m e b y t r ic k in g t h e g oble t i n to a ccep tin g h is n am e.
Then th ere w as th e f a ct th at C ed ric lo oked th e p art o f a c h am pio n s o m uch
more th an h e d id . E xcep tio nally h an dso m e, w ith h is s tr a ig ht n ose , d ark h air , a n d
gra y e y es, it w as h ard to sa y w ho w as re ceiv in g m ore a d m ir a tio n th ese d ay s,
Ced ric o r V ik to r K ru m . H arry a ctu ally s a w th e s a m e s ix th -y ear g ir ls w ho h ad
been s o k een to g et K ru m 's a u to gra p h b eg gin g C ed ric to s ig n th eir s c h ool b ag s
one l u nch tim e.
Mean w hile th ere w as n o re p ly fro m S ir iu s, H ed w ig w as re fu sin g to c o m e
an yw here n ear h im , P ro fe sso r T re la w ney w as p re d ic tin g h is d eath w ith ev en
more certa in ty th an usu al, an d he did so bad ly at S um monin g C harm s in
Pro fe sso r F litw ic k 's c la ss t h at h e w as g iv en e x tr a h om ew ork — th e o nly p ers o n t o
get a n y, a p art f ro m N ev ille .
“It's r e ally n ot th at d if f ic u lt, H arry ,” H erm io ne tr ie d to r e assu re h im a s th ey
le ft F litw ic k 's c la ss— sh e h ad b een m ak in g o bje cts z o om a cro ss th e r o om to h er
all le sso n, a s th ough sh e w ere so m e so rt o f w eir d m ag net fo r b oard d uste rs ,
waste p ap er b ask ets , a n d l u nasc o pes. “ Y ou j u st w ere n 't c o ncen tr a tin g p ro perly — ”
“W onder w hy th at w as,” s a id H arry d ark ly a s C ed ric D ig gory w alk ed p ast,
su rro unded b y a la rg e g ro up o f s im perin g g ir ls , a ll o f w hom lo oked a t H arry a s
th ough h e w ere a p artic u la rly l a rg e B la st- E nded S kre w t. “ S till— nev er m in d, e h ?
Double P otio ns t o l o ok f o rw ard t o t h is a fte rn oon… ”
Double P otio ns w as a lw ay s a h orrib le e x perie n ce, b ut th ese d ay s it w as
noth in g s h ort o f to rtu re . B ein g s h ut in a d ungeo n fo r a n h our a n d a h alf w ith
Snap e a n d th e S ly th erin s, a ll o f w hom s e em ed d ete rm in ed to p unis h H arry a s
much a s p ossib le fo r d arin g to b eco m e sc h ool c h am pio n, w as a b out th e m ost
unple asa n t th in g H arry c o uld im ag in e. H e h ad a lr e ad y str u ggle d th ro ugh o ne
Frid ay 's w orth , w ith H erm io ne s ittin g n ex t to h im in to nin g “ ig nore th em , ig nore
th em , ig nore th em ” u nder h er b re ath , a n d h e c o uld n't s e e w hy to day s h ould b e
an y b ette r.
When h e a n d H erm io ne a rriv ed a t S nap e's d ungeo n a fte r lu nch , th ey f o und
th e S ly th erin s w aitin g o uts id e, e ach a n d e v ery o ne o f t h em w earin g a l a rg e b ad ge
on t h e f ro nt o f h is o r h er r o bes. F or o ne w ild m om en t H arry t h ought t h ey w ere S .
P. E . W . b ad ges— th en h e s a w th at th ey a ll b ore th e s a m e m essa g e, in lu m in ous
re d l e tte rs t h at b urn t b rig htly i n t h e d im ly l it u nderg ro und p assa g e:
SU PPO RT C ED RIC D IG GORY —
TH E R EA L H OGW ART S C H AM PIO N!
“L ik e th em , P otte r? ” sa id M alf o y lo udly a s H arry a p pro ach ed . “ A nd th is

is n 't a ll t h ey d o— lo ok!”
He p re sse d h is b ad ge i n to h is c h est, a n d t h e m essa g e u pon i t v an is h ed , t o b e
re p la ced b y a n oth er o ne, w hic h g lo w ed g re en :
PO TTER S T IN KS!
The S ly th erin s h ow le d w ith la u ghte r. E ach o f th em p re sse d th eir b ad ges
to o, u ntil th e m essa g e P O TTER S T IN KS w as s h in in g b rig htly a ll a ro und H arry .
He f e lt t h e h eat r is e i n h is f a ce a n d n eck .
“O h v ery fu nny,” H erm io ne s a id s a rc astic ally to P an sy P ark in so n a n d h er
gan g o f S ly th erin g ir ls , w ho w ere l a u ghin g h ard er t h an a n yone, “ re ally w itty .”
Ron w as sta n din g ag ain st th e w all w ith D ean an d S eam us. H e w asn 't
la u ghin g, b ut h e w asn 't s tic k in g u p f o r H arry e ith er.
“W an t o ne, G ra n ger? ” s a id M alf o y, h old in g o ut a b ad ge to H erm io ne. “ I'v e
got lo ad s. B ut d on't to uch m y h an d, n ow . I 'v e ju st w ash ed it, y ou s e e; d on't w an t
a M udblo od s lim in g i t u p.”
Som e o f th e a n ger H arry h ad b een fe elin g fo r d ay s a n d d ay s se em ed to
burs t th ro ugh a d am in h is ch est. H e h ad re ach ed fo r h is w an d b efo re h e'd
th ought w hat h e w as d oin g. P eo ple a ll a ro und th em s c ra m ble d o ut o f th e w ay,
back in g d ow n t h e c o rrid or.
“H arry !” H erm io ne s a id w arn in gly .
“G o o n, th en , P otte r,” M alf o y sa id q uie tly , d ra w in g o ut h is o w n w an d.
“M oody's n ot h ere t o l o ok a fte r y ou n ow — do i t, i f y ou'v e g ot t h e g uts — ”
For a s p lit s e co nd, th ey lo oked in to e ach o th er's e y es, th en , a t e x actly th e
sa m e t im e, b oth a cte d .
“F unnuncu lu s!” H arry y elle d .
“D en sa u geo !” s c re am ed M alf o y.
Je ts o f lig ht s h ot f ro m b oth w an ds, h it e ach o th er in m id air , a n d r ic o ch ete d
off a t a n gle s— Harry 's h it G oyle in th e fa ce, a n d M alf o y's h it H erm io ne. G oyle
bello w ed a n d p ut h is h an ds t o h is n ose , w here g re at u gly b oils w ere s p rin gin g u p
—Herm io ne, w him perin g i n p an ic , w as c lu tc h in g h er m outh .
“H erm io ne!”
Ron h ad h urrie d f o rw ard t o s e e w hat w as w ro ng w ith h er; H arry t u rn ed a n d
sa w R on d ra g gin g H erm io ne's h an d a w ay f ro m h er f a ce. I t w asn 't a p re tty s ig ht.
Herm io ne's fro nt te eth — alr e ad y la rg er th an a v era g e— were n ow g ro w in g a t a n
ala rm in g ra te ; sh e w as lo okin g m ore an d m ore lik e a beav er as her te eth
elo ngate d , p ast h er b otto m lip , to w ard h er c h in — pan ic -s tr ic k en , sh e fe lt th em
an d l e t o ut a t e rrif ie d c ry .
“A nd w hat i s a ll t h is n ois e a b out? ” s a id a s o ft, d ead ly v oic e.
Snap e had arriv ed . T he S ly th erin s cla m ore d to giv e th eir ex pla n atio ns;
Snap e p oin te d a l o ng y ello w f in ger a t M alf o y a n d s a id , “ E xpla in .”

“P otte r a tta ck ed m e, s ir — ”
“W e a tta ck ed e ach o th er a t t h e s a m e t im e!” H arry s h oute d .
“an d h e h it G oyle — lo ok— ”
Snap e e x am in ed G oyle , w hose fa ce n ow re se m ble d s o m eth in g th at w ould
hav e b een a t h om e i n a b ook o n p ois o nous f u ngi.
“H osp ita l w in g, G oyle ,” S nap e s a id c alm ly .
“M alf o y g ot H erm io ne!” R on s a id . “ L ook!”
He fo rc ed H erm io ne to s h ow S nap e h er te eth — sh e w as d oin g h er b est to
hid e t h em w ith h er h an ds, t h ough t h is w as d if f ic u lt a s t h ey h ad n ow g ro w n d ow n
past h er c o lla r. P an sy P ark in so n a n d th e o th er S ly th erin g ir ls w ere d ouble d u p
with s ile n t g ig gle s, p oin tin g a t H erm io ne f ro m b eh in d S nap e's b ack .
Snap e l o oked c o ld ly a t H erm io ne, t h en s a id , “ I s e e n o d if f e re n ce.” .
Herm io ne le t o ut a w him per; h er e y es fille d w ith te ars , s h e tu rn ed o n h er
heel a n d r a n , r a n a ll t h e w ay u p t h e c o rrid or a n d o ut o f s ig ht.
It w as lu ck y, p erh ap s, th at b oth H arry a n d R on s ta rte d s h outin g a t S nap e a t
th e s a m e t im e; l u ck y t h eir v oic e s e ch oed s o m uch i n t h e s to ne c o rrid or, f o r i n t h e
co nfu se d d in , it w as im possib le fo r h im to h ear e x actly w hat th ey w ere c allin g
him . H e g ot t h e g is t, h ow ev er.
“L et's s e e,” h e s a id , in h is s ilk ie st v oic e. “ F if ty p oin ts f ro m G ry ff in dor a n d
a d ete n tio n e ach fo r P otte r a n d W easle y. N ow g et in sid e, o r it'l l b e a w eek 's
worth o f d ete n tio ns.”
Harry 's e ars w ere r in gin g. T he i n ju stic e o f i t m ad e h im w an t t o c u rs e S nap e
in to a th ousa n d s lim y p ie ces. H e p asse d S nap e, w alk ed w ith R on to th e b ack o f
th e d ungeo n, a n d s la m med h is b ag d ow n o nto th e ta b le . R on w as s h ak in g w ith
an ger to o— fo r a m om en t, it fe lt as th ough ev ery th in g w as back to norm al
betw een t h em , b ut t h en R on t u rn ed a n d s a t d ow n w ith D ean a n d S eam us i n ste ad ,
le av in g H arry a lo ne a t h is t a b le . O n t h e o th er s id e o f t h e d ungeo n, M alf o y t u rn ed
his b ack o n S nap e a n d p re sse d h is b ad ge, s m ir k in g. P O TTER S T IN KS fla sh ed
once m ore a cro ss t h e r o om .
Harry sa t th ere sta rin g at S nap e as th e le sso n b eg an , p ic tu rin g h orrif ic
th in gs h ap pen in g t o h im … I f o nly h e k new h ow t o d o t h e C ru cia tu s C urs e … h e'd
hav e S nap e f la t o n h is b ack l ik e t h at s p id er, j e rk in g a n d t w itc h in g.
“A ntid ote s!” sa id S nap e, lo okin g a ro und a t th em a ll, h is c o ld b la ck e y es
glitte rin g u nple asa n tly . “ Y ou s h ould a ll h av e p re p are d y our r e cip es n ow . I w an t
you to b re w th em c are fu lly , a n d th en , w e w ill b e s e le ctin g s o m eo ne o n w hom to
te st o ne… ”
Snap e's e y es m et H arry 's , a n d H arry k new w hat w as c o m in g. S nap e w as
goin g to p ois o n h im . H arry im ag in ed p ic k in g u p h is c au ld ro n, a n d s p rin tin g to
th e f ro nt o f th e c la ss, a n d b rin gin g it d ow n o n S nap e's g re asy h ead — And th en a

knock o n t h e d ungeo n d oor b urs t i n o n H arry 's t h oughts .
It w as C olin C re ev ey ; h e ed ged in to th e ro om , b eam in g at H arry , an d
walk ed u p t o S nap e's d esk a t t h e f ro nt o f t h e r o om .
“Y es? ” s a id S nap e c u rtly .
“P le ase , s ir , I 'm s u ppose d t o t a k e H arry P otte r u psta ir s .” S nap e s ta re d d ow n
his h ooked n ose a t C olin , w hose s m ile f a d ed f ro m h is e ag er f a ce.
“P otte r h as a n oth er h our o f P otio ns to c o m ple te ,” s a id S nap e c o ld ly . “ H e
will c o m e u psta ir s w hen t h is c la ss i s f in is h ed .”
Colin w en t p in k.
“S ir — sir , M r. B ag m an w an ts h im ,” h e s a id n erv ously . “ A ll th e c h am pio ns
hav e g ot t o g o, I t h in k t h ey w an t t o t a k e p hoto gra p hs… ”
Harry w ould h av e g iv en a n yth in g h e o w ned to h av e s to pped C olin s a y in g
th ose la st fe w w ord s. H e c h an ced h alf a g la n ce a t R on, b ut R on w as sta rin g
dete rm in ed ly a t t h e c eilin g.
“V ery w ell, v ery w ell,” S nap e sn ap ped . “ P otte r, le av e y our th in gs h ere , I
wan t y ou b ack d ow n h ere l a te r t o t e st y our a n tid ote .”
“P le ase , s ir — he's g ot t o t a k e h is t h in gs w ith h im ,” s q ueak ed C ohn. “ A ll t h e
ch am pio ns… ”
“V ery w ell! ” s a id S nap e. “ P otte r— ta k e y our b ag a n d g et o ut o f m y s ig ht! ”
Harry s w ung h is b ag o ver h is s h ould er, g ot u p, a n d h ead ed f o r th e d oor. A s
he w alk ed th ro ugh th e S ly th erin d esk s, P O TTER S T IN KS fla sh ed a t h im fro m
ev ery d ir e ctio n.
“It's am azin g, is n 't it, H arry ?” sa id C olin , sta rtin g to sp eak th e m om en t
Harry h ad c lo se d th e d ungeo n d oor b eh in d h im . “ Is n 't it, th ough? Y ou b ein g
ch am pio n?”
“Y eah , r e ally a m azin g,” s a id H arry h eav ily a s th ey s e t o ff to w ard th e s te p s
in to t h e e n tr a n ce h all. “ W hat d o t h ey w an t p hoto s f o r, C olin ?”
“T he D aily P ro phet, I t h in k!”
“G re at,” s a id H arry d ully . “ E xactly w hat I n eed . M ore p ublic ity .”
“G ood lu ck !” sa id C olin w hen th ey h ad re ach ed th e rig ht ro om . H arry
knock ed o n t h e d oor a n d e n te re d .
He w as in a fa ir ly sm all c la ssro om ; m ost o f th e d esk s h ad b een p ush ed
aw ay t o t h e b ack o f t h e r o om , l e av in g a l a rg e s p ace i n t h e m id dle ; t h re e o f t h em ,
how ev er, h ad b een p la ced e n d-to -e n d in fro nt o f th e b la ck board a n d c o vere d
with a lo ng le n gth o f v elv et. F iv e c h air s h ad b een s e t b eh in d th e v elv et- c o vere d
desk s, a n d L udo B ag m an w as s ittin g i n o ne o f t h em , t a lk in g t o a w itc h H arry h ad
nev er s e en b efo re , w ho w as w earin g m ag en ta r o bes.
Vik to r K ru m w as s ta n din g m oodily in a c o rn er a s u su al a n d n ot ta lk in g to
an ybody. C ed ric an d F heu r w ere in co nvers a tio n. F heu r lo oked a g ood d eal

hap pie r th an H arry h ad s e en h er s o f a r; s h e k ep t th ro w in g b ack h er h ead s o th at
her lo ng silv ery h air c au ght th e lig ht. A p au nch y m an , h old in g a la rg e b la ck
cam era th at w as s m okin g s lig htly , w as w atc h in g F le u r o ut o f th e c o rn er o f h is
ey e.
Bag m an s u dden ly s p otte d H arry , g ot u p q uic k ly , a n d b ounded f o rw ard .
“A h, here he is ! C ham pio n num ber fo ur! In you co m e, H arry , in you
co m e… n oth in g t o w orry a b out, i t's j u st t h e w an d w eig hin g c ere m ony, t h e r e st o f
th e j u dges w ill b e h ere i n a m om en t— ”
“W an d w eig hin g?” H arry r e p eate d n erv ously .
“W e h av e to c h eck th at y our w an ds a re f u lly f u nctio nal, n o p ro ble m s, y ou
know , a s th ey 'r e y our m ost im porta n t to ols in th e ta sk s a h ead ,” sa id B ag m an .
“T he e x pert's u psta ir s n ow w ith D um ble d ore . A nd t h en t h ere 's g oin g t o b e a l ittle
photo sh oot. T his is R ita S keete r,” h e ad ded , g estu rin g to w ard th e w itc h in
mag en ta ro bes. “S he's d oin g a sm all p ie ce o n th e to urn am en t fo r th e D aily
Pro phet… ”
“M ay be n ot t h at s m all, L udo,” s a id R ita S keete r, h er e y es o n H arry .
Her h air w as s e t in e la b ora te a n d c u rio usly r ig id c u rls th at c o ntr a ste d o ddly
with her heav y-ja w ed fa ce. S he w ore je w ele d sp ecta cle s. T he th ic k fin gers
clu tc h in g h er c ro co dile -s k in h an dbag e n ded i n t w o-in ch n ails , p ain te d c rim so n.
“I w onder i f I c o uld h av e a l ittle w ord w ith H arry b efo re w e s ta rt? ” s h e s a id
to B ag m an , b ut still g azin g fix ed ly at H arry . “T he y oungest ch am pio n, y ou
know … t o a d d a b it o f c o lo r? ”
“C erta in ly !” c rie d B ag m an . “ T hat i s — if H arry h as n o o bje ctio n?”
“E r— ” s a id H arry .
“L ovely ,” s a id R ita S keete r, a n d i n a s e co nd, h er s c arle t- ta lo ned f in gers h ad
Harry 's u pper a rm in a s u rp ris in gly s tr o ng g rip , a n d s h e w as s te erin g h im o ut o f
th e r o om a g ain a n d o pen in g a n earb y d oor.
“W e d on't w an t to b e in th ere w ith a ll th at n ois e ,” s h e s a id . “ L et's s e e… a h ,
yes, t h is i s n ic e a n d c o zy.”
It w as a b ro om c u pboard . H arry s ta re d a t h er.
“C om e a lo ng, d ear— th at's r ig ht— lo vely ,” s a id R ita S keete r a g ain , p erc h in g
hers e lf pre cario usly upon an uptu rn ed buck et, push in g H arry dow n onto a
card board b ox, a n d c lo sin g th e d oor, th ro w in g th em in to d ark ness. “ L et's se e
now ..”
She u nsn ap ped h er cro co dile -s k in h an dbag an d p ulle d o ut a h an dfu l o f
can dle s, w hic h s h e l it w ith a w av e o f h er w an d a n d m ag ic k ed i n to m id air , s o t h at
th ey c o uld s e e w hat t h ey w ere d oin g.
“Y ou w on't m in d, H arry , if I u se a Q uic k -Q uote s Q uill? I t le av es m e f re e to
ta lk t o y ou n orm ally … ”

“A w hat? ” s a id H arry .
Rita S keete r's s m ile w id en ed . H arry c o unte d th re e g old te eth . S he re ach ed
ag ain in to h er c ro co dile b ag a n d d re w o ut a lo ng a cid -g re en q uill a n d a ro ll o f
parc h m en t, w hic h s h e s tr e tc h ed o ut b etw een th em o n a c ra te o f M rs . S kow er's
All- P urp ose M ag ic al M ess R em over. S he p ut th e tip o f th e g re en q uill in to h er
mouth , s u ck ed i t f o r a m om en t w ith a p pare n t r e lis h , t h en p la ced i t u prig ht o n t h e
parc h m en t, w here i t s to od b ala n ced o n i ts p oin t, q uiv erin g s lig htly .
“T estin g… m y n am e i s R ita S keete r, D aily P ro phet r e p orte r.”
Harry h ooked d ow n q uic k ly at th e q uill. T he m om en t R ita S keete r h ad
sp oken , t h e g re en q uill h ad s ta rte d t o s c rib ble , s k id din g a cro ss t h e p arc h m en t:
Attr a ctiv e blo nde Rita Skeete r, fo rty -th re e, who's sa v ag e quill has
punctu re d m an y i n fla te d r e p uta tio ns—
“L ovely ,” sa id R ita S keete r, y et ag ain , an d sh e rip ped th e to p p ie ce o f
parc h m en t o ff , c ru m ple d it u p, a n d s tu ff e d it in to h er h an dbag . N ow s h e le an ed
to w ard H arry an d sa id , “S o, H arry … w hat m ad e you decid e to en te r th e
Triw iz ard T ourn am en t? ”
“E r— ” s a id H arry a g ain , b ut h e w as d is tr a cte d b y t h e q uill. E ven t h ough h e
wasn 't s p eak in g, it w as d ash in g a cro ss th e p arc h m en t, a n d in its w ak e h e c o uld
mak e o ut a f re sh s e n te n ce:
An u gly s c ar, s o uven ie r o f a tr a g ic p ast, d is fig ure s th e o th erw is e c h arm in g
fa ce o f H arry P otte r, w hose e y es—
“Ig nore t h e q uill, H arry ,” s a id R ita S keete r f ir m ly . R elu cta n tly H arry l o oked
up a t h er i n ste ad . “ N ow — why d id y ou d ecid e t o e n te r t h e t o urn am en t, H arry ?”
“I d id n't ,” s a id H arry . “ I d on't k now h ow m y n am e g ot in to th e G oble t o f
Fir e . I d id n't p ut i t i n t h ere .”
Rita S keete r r a is e d o ne h eav ily p en cile d e y eb ro w .
“C om e n ow , H arry , th ere 's n o n eed to b e s c are d o f g ettin g in to tr o uble . W e
all k now y ou s h ould n't r e ally h av e e n te re d a t a ll. B ut d on't w orry a b out t h at. O ur
re ad ers h ove a r e b el.”
“B ut I d id n't e n te r,” H arry r e p eate d . “ I d on't k now w ho— ”
“H ow d o y ou fe el ab out th e ta sk s ah ead ?” sa id R ita S keete r. “E xcite d ?
Nerv ous? ”
“I hav en 't re ally th ought… yeah , nerv ous, I su ppose ,” sa id H arry . H is
in sid es s q uir m ed u nco m fo rta b ly a s h e s p oke.
“C ham pio ns h av e d ie d in th e p ast, h av en 't th ey ?” s a id R ita S keete r b ris k ly .
“H av e y ou t h ought a b out t h at a t a ll? ”
“W ell… t h ey s a y i t's g oin g t o b e a l o t s a fe r t h is y ear,” s a id H arry .
The q uill w hiz zed a cro ss t h e p arc h m en t b etw een t h em , b ack a n d f o rw ard a s
th ough i t w ere s k atin g.

“O f c o urs e , y ou'v e lo oked d eath in th e f a ce b efo re , h av en 't y ou?” s a id R ita
Skeete r, w atc h in g h im c lo se ly . “ H ow w ould y ou s a y t h at's a ff e cte d y ou?”
“E r,” s a id H arry , y et a g ain .
“D o y ou th in k th at th e tr a u m a in y our p ast m ig ht h av e m ad e y ou k een to
pro ve y ours e lf ? T o liv e u p to y our n am e? D o y ou th in k th at p erh ap s y ou w ere
te m pte d t o e n te r t h e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t b ecau se — ”
“I d id n't e n te r,” s a id H arry , s ta rtin g t o f e el i r rita te d .
“C an y ou re m em ber y our p are n ts a t a ll? ” sa id R ita S keete r, ta lk in g o ver
him .
“N o,” s a id H arry .
“H ow d o y ou th in k th ey 'd fe el if th ey k new y ou w ere c o m petin g in th e
Triw iz ard T ourn am en t? P ro ud? W orrie d ? A ngry ?”
Harry w as f e elin g r e ally a n noyed n ow . H ow o n e arth w as h e to k now h ow
his p are n ts w ould fe el if th ey w ere a liv e? H e c o uld fe el R ita S keete r w atc h in g
him v ery i n te n tly . F ro w nin g, h e a v oid ed h er g aze a n d h ooked d ow n a t w ord s t h e
quill h ad j u st w ritte n :
Tears fill th ose sta rtlin gly gre en ey es as our co nvers a tio n tu rn s to th e
pare n ts h e c an b are ly r e m em ber.
“I h av e N OT g ot t e ars i n m y e y es!” s a id H arry l o udly .
Befo re R ita S keete r c o uld s a y a w ord , th e d oor o f th e b ro om c u pboard w as
pulle d open . Harry lo oked aro und, blin kin g in th e brig ht lig ht. Alb us
Dum ble d ore sto od th ere , lo okin g dow n at both of th em , sq uash ed in to th e
cu pboard .
“D um ble d ore !” c rie d R ita S keete r, w ith e v ery a p peara n ce o f d elig ht— but
Harry n otic ed th at h er q uill a n d th e p arc h m en t h ad s u dden ly v an is h ed f ro m th e
box o f M ag ic al M ess R em over, a n d R ita 's c la w ed f in gers w ere h astily s n ap pin g
sh ut th e c la sp o f h er c ro co dile -s k in b ag . “ H ow a re y ou?” s h e s a id , s ta n din g u p
an d h old in g o ut o ne o f h er la rg e, m an nis h h an ds to D um ble d ore . “ I h ope y ou
sa w m y p ie ce o ver t h e s u m mer a b out t h e I n te rn atio nal C onfe d era tio n o f W iz ard s'
Confe re n ce?”
“E nch an tin gly n asty ,” s a id D um ble d ore , h is e y es tw in klin g. “ I p artic u la rly
en jo yed y our d esc rip tio n o f m e a s a n o bso le te d in gbat.”
Rita S keete r d id n't l o ok r e m ote ly a b ash ed .
“I w as ju st m ak in g th e poin t th at so m e of your id eas are a little old -
fa sh io ned , D um bhed ore , a n d t h at m an y w iz ard s i n t h e s tr e et— ”
“I w ill b e d elig hte d to h ear th e re aso nin g b eh in d th e ru den ess, R ita ,” s a id
Dum ble d ore , w ith a c o urte o us b ow a n d a s m ile , “ b ut I 'm a fra id w e w ill h av e to
dis c u ss th e m atte r la te r. T he W eig hin g o f th e W an ds is a b out to sta rt, a n d it
can not t a k e p la ce i f o ne o f o ur c h am pio ns i s h id den i n a b ro om c u pboard .”

Very g la d to g et a w ay f ro m R ita S keete r, H arry h urrie d b ack in to th e r o om .
The o th er c h am pio ns w ere n ow s ittin g in c h air s n ear th e d oor, a n d h e s a t d ow n
quic k ly n ex t t o C ed ric , h ookin g u p a t t h e v elv et- c o vere d t a b le , w here f o ur o f t h e
fiv e ju dges w ere now sittin g— Pro fe sso r K ark aro ff , M ad am e M ax im e, M r.
Cro uch , a n d L udo B ag m an . R ita S keete r s e ttle d h ers e lf d ow n in a c o rn er; H arry
sa w h er s lip th e p arc h m en t o ut o f h er b ag a g ain , s p re ad it o n h er k nee, s u ck th e
en d o f t h e Q uic k -Q uote s Q uill, a n d p la ce i t o nce m ore o n t h e p arc h m en t.
“M ay I i n tr o duce M r. O lliv an der? ” s a id D um ble d ore , t a k in g h is p la ce a t t h e
ju dges' ta b le a n d ta lk in g to th e c h am pio ns. “ H e w ill b e c h eck in g y our w an ds to
en su re t h at t h ey a re i n g ood c o nditio n b efo re t h e t o urn am en t.”
Harry h ooked a ro und, a n d w ith a jo lt o f s u rp ris e s a w a n o ld w iz ard w ith
la rg e, p ale e y es s ta n din g q uie tly b y th e w in dow . H arry h ad m et M r. O lliv an der
befo re — he w as th e w an d-m ak er fro m w hom H arry h ad b ought h is o w n w an d
over t h re e y ears a g o i n D ia g on A lle y.
“M ad em ois e lle D ela co ur, co uld w e hav e you fir s t, ple ase ?” sa id M r.
Olliv an der, s te p pin g i n to t h e e m pty s p ace i n t h e m id dle o f t h e r o om .
Fle u r D ela co ur s w ep t o ver t o M r. O lh iv an der a n d h an ded h im h er w an d.
“H m m… ” h e s a id .
He tw ir le d th e w an d b etw een h is lo ng f in gers lik e a b ato n a n d it e m itte d a
num ber o f p in k a n d g old s p ark s. T hen h e h eld it c h ose to h is e y es a n d e x am in ed
it c are fu lly .
“Y es,” h e sa id q uie tly , “ n in e a n d a h alf in ch es… in fle x ib le .. ro se w ood…
an d c o nta in in g… d ear m e… ”
“A n 'a ir f ro m z e 'e ad o f a v eela ,” s a id F le u r. “ O ne o f m y g ra n dm uzzer's .”
So F le u r w as p art v eela , th ought H arry , m ak in g a m en ta l n ote to te ll R on…
th en h e r e m em bere d t h at R on w asn 't s p eak in g t o h im .
“Y es,” sa id M r. O lliv an der, “y es, I'v e n ev er u se d v eela h air m yse lf , o f
co urs e . I fin d it m ak es fo r ra th er te m pera m en ta l w an ds… h ow ev er, to e ach h is
ow n, a n d i f t h is s u its y ou..”
Mr. O lliv an der ra n h is fin gers alo ng th e w an d, ap pare n tly ch eck in g fo r
sc ra tc h es o r b um ps; th en h e m utte re d , “ O rc h id eo us!” a n d a b unch o f flo w ers
burs t f ro m t h e w an d t ip .
“V ery w ell, v ery w ell, it's in fin e w ork in g o rd er,” sa id M r. O lliv an der,
sc o opin g u p t h e f lo w ers a n d h an din g t h em t o F le u r w ith h er w an d. “ M r. D ig gory ,
you n ex t.”
Fle u r g lid ed b ack t o h er s e at, s m ilin g a t C ed ric a s h e p asse d h er.
“A h, n ow , th is is o ne o f m in e, is n 't it? ” sa id M r. O lliv an der, w ith m uch
more e n th usia sm , a s C ed ric h an ded o ver h is w an d. “ Y es, I re m em ber it w ell.
Conta in in g a s in gle h air f ro m th e ta il o f a p artic u la rly f in e m ale u nic o rn … m ust

hav e b een s e v en te en h an ds; n early g ore d m e w ith h is h orn a fte r I p lu ck ed h is
ta il. Tw elv e an d a quarte r in ch es… ash … ple asa n tly sp rin gy. It's in fin e
co nditio n… Y ou t r e at i t r e g ula rly ?”
“P olis h ed i t l a st n ig ht,” s a id C ed ric , g rin nin g.
Harry h ooked d ow n a t h is o w n w an d. H e c o uld s e e f in ger m ark s a ll o ver it.
He gath ere d a fis tf u l of ro be fro m his knee an d tr ie d to ru b it cle an
su rre p titio usly . S ev era l g old s p ark s s h ot o ut o f t h e e n d o f i t. F le u r D ela co ur g av e
him a v ery p atr o niz in g l o ok, a n d h e d esis te d .
Mr. O lliv an der s e n t a s tr e am o f s ilv er s m oke r in gs a cro ss t h e r o om f ro m t h e
tip o f C ed ric 's w an d, p ro nounced h im se lf s a tis fie d , a n d th en s a id , “ M r. K ru m , if
you p le ase .”
Vik to r K ru m got up an d slo uch ed , ro und-s h ould ere d an d duck -fo ote d ,
to w ard M r. O lliv an der. H e th ru st o ut h is w an d an d sto od sc o w lin g, w ith h is
han ds i n t h e p ock ets o f h is r o bes.
“H m m,” s a id M r. O lh iv an der, “ th is is a G re g oro vitc h c re atio n, u nle ss I'm
much m is ta k en ? A f in e w an d-m ak er, th ough th e s ty lin g is n ev er q uite w hat I …
how ev er..”
He lif te d th e w an d an d ex am in ed it m in ute ly , tu rn in g it o ver an d o ver
befo re h is e y es.
“Y es… h orn beam a n d d ra g on h earts tr in g?” h e s h ot a t K ru m , w ho n odded .
“R ath er th ic k er th an o ne u su ally s e es… q uite r ig id … te n a n d a q uarte r in ch es…
Avis !”
The h orn beam w an d le t o ff a b la st h ik e a g un, a n d a n um ber o f sm all,
tw itte rin g b ir d s f le w o ut o f t h e e n d a n d t h ro ugh t h e o pen w in dow i n to t h e w ate ry
su nlig ht.
“G ood,” sa id M r. O lliv an der, han din g K ru m back his w an d. “W hic h
le av es… M r. P otte r.”
Harry g ot to h is fe et a n d w alk ed p ast K ru m to M r. O lliv an der. H e h an ded
over h is w an d.
“A aaah , y es,” s a id M r. O hliv an der, h is p ale e y es s u dden ly g le am in g. “ Y es,
yes, y es. H ow w ell I r e m em ber.”
Harry co uld re m em ber to o. H e co uld re m em ber it as th ough it had
hap pen ed y este rd ay …
Four su m mers ag o, on his ele v en th bir th day, he had en te re d M r.
Olliv an der's sh op w ith H ag rid to b uy a w an d. M r. O lliv an der h ad ta k en h is
measu re m en ts a n d t h en s ta rte d h an din g h im w an ds t o t r y . H arry h ad w av ed w hat
fe lt l ik e e v ery w an d i n t h e s h op, u ntil a t l a st h e h ad f o und t h e o ne t h at s u ite d h im
—th is o ne, w hic h w as m ad e o f h olly , e le v en in ch es lo ng, a n d c o nta in ed a s in gle
fe ath er fro m th e ta il o f a p hoen ix . M r. O lliv an der h ad b een v ery s u rp ris e d th at

Harry h ad b een s o c o m patib le w ith t h is w an d. “ C urio us,” h e h ad s a id , “ cu rio us,”
an d n ot u ntil H arry a sk ed w hat w as c u rio us h ad M r. O lh iv an der e x pla in ed th at
th e p hoen ix fe ath er in H arry 's w an d h ad co m e fro m th e sa m e b ir d th at h ad
su pplie d t h e c o re o f L ord V old em ort's .
Harry h ad n ev er sh are d th is p ie ce o f in fo rm atio n w ith a n ybody. H e w as
very f o nd o f h is w an d, a n d a s f a r a s h e w as c o ncern ed i ts r e la tio n t o V old em ort's
wan d w as s o m eth in g it c o uld n't h elp — ra th er a s h e c o uld n't h elp b ein g r e la te d to
Aunt P etu nia . H ow ev er, h e r e ally h oped th at M r. O lliv an der w asn 't a b out to te ll
th e ro om a b out it. H e h ad a fu nny fe elin g R ita S keete r's Q uic k -Q uote s Q uill
mig ht j u st e x plo de w ith e x cite m en t i f h e d id .
Mr. O lliv an der sp en t m uch lo nger ex am in in g H arry 's w an d th an an yone
els e 's . E ven tu ally , h ow ev er, h e m ad e a fo unta in o f w in e sh oot o ut o f it, a n d
han ded i t b ack t o H arry , a n nouncin g t h at i t w as s till i n p erfe ct c o nditio n.
“T han k y ou a ll,” s a id D um ble d ore , s ta n din g u p a t th e ju dges' ta b le . “ Y ou
may g o b ack to y our le sso ns n ow — or p erh ap s it w ould b e q uic k er ju st to g o
dow n t o d in ner, a s t h ey a re a b out t o e n d— ”
Feelin g th at a t la st s o m eth in g h ad g one r ig ht to day, H arry g ot u p to le av e,
but t h e m an w ith t h e b la ck c am era j u m ped u p a n d c le are d h is t h ro at.
“P hoto s, D um ble d ore , p hoto s!” crie d B ag m an ex cite d ly . “A ll th e ju dges
an d c h am pio ns, w hat d o y ou t h in k, R ita ?”
“E r— yes, le t's d o th ose fir s t,” sa id R ita S keete r, w hose e y es w ere u pon
Harry a g ain . “ A nd t h en p erh ap s s o m e i n div id ual s h ots .”
The p hoto gra p hs t o ok a l o ng t im e. M ad am e M ax im e c ast e v ery one e ls e i n to
sh ad ow w here v er s h e s to od, a n d t h e p hoto gra p her c o uld n't s ta n d f a r e n ough b ack
to g et h er in to th e fra m e; e v en tu ally sh e h ad to sit w hile e v ery one e ls e sto od
aro und h er. K ark aro ff k ep t tw ir lin g h is g oate e a ro und h is fin ger to g iv e it a n
ex tr a c u rl; K ru m , w hom H arry w ould h av e t h ought w ould h av e b een u se d t o t h is
so rt o f th in g, s k ulk ed , h alf -h id den , a t th e b ack o f th e g ro up. T he p hoto gra p her
se em ed k een est to g et F le u r a t th e f ro nt, b ut R ita S keete r k ep t h urry in g f o rw ard
an d d ra g gin g H arry in to g re ate r p ro m in en ce. T hen s h e in sis te d o n s e p ara te s h ots
of a ll t h e c h am pio ns. A t l a st, t h ey w ere f re e t o g o.
Harry w en t d ow n to d in ner. H erm io ne w asn 't th ere — he s u ppose d s h e w as
still in th e h osp ita l w in g h av in g h er te eth fix ed . H e a te a lo ne a t th e e n d o f th e
ta b le , th en re tu rn ed to G ry ff in dor T ow er, th in kin g o f all th e ex tr a w ork o n
Sum monin g C harm s t h at h e h ad t o d o. U p i n t h e d orm ito ry , h e c am e a cro ss R on.
“Y ou'v e h ad a n o w l,” s a id R on b ru sq uely t h e m om en t h e w alk ed i n . H e w as
poin tin g a t H arry 's p illo w . T he s c h ool b arn o w l w as w aitin g f o r h im t h ere .
“O h— rig ht,” s a id H arry .
“A nd w e'v e g ot to d o o ur d ete n tio ns to m orro w n ig ht, S nap e's d ungeo n,”

sa id R on.
He th en w alk ed str a ig ht out of th e ro om , not lo okin g at H arry . F or a
mom en t, H arry c o nsid ere d g oin g a fte r h im — he w asn 't s u re w heth er h e w an te d
to ta lk to h im o r h it h im , b oth s e em ed q uite a p pealin g— but th e lu re o f S ir iu s's
an sw er w as to o s tr o ng. H arry s tr o de o ver to th e b arn o w l, to ok th e le tte r o ff its
le g , a n d u nro lle d i t.
Harry —
I c an 't s a y e v ery th in g I w ould l ik e t o i n a l e tte r, i t's t o o r is k y
in c ase t h e o w l i s i n te rc ep te d — we n eed t o t a lk f a ce-to -fa ce. C an y ou e n su re
th at y ou a re a lo ne b y th e f ir e in G ry ff in dor T ow er a t o ne o 'c lo ck in th e m orn in g
on t h e 2 2nd o fN ovem ber?
I k now b ette r th an a n yone th at y ou c an lo ok a fte r y ours e lf a n d w hile y ou'r e
aro und D um ble d ore a n d M oody I d on't th in k a n yone w ill b e a b le to h urt y ou.
How ev er, so m eo ne se em s to be hav in g a good tr y . E nte rin g you in th at
to urn am en t w ould h av e b een v ery ris k y, esp ecia lly rig ht u nder D um bkdore 's
nose .
Be o n th e w atc h , H arry . I s till w an t to h ear a b out a n yth in g u nusu al. L et m e
know a b out t h e 2 2nd o fN ovem ber a s q uic k ly a s y ou c an .
Sir iu s

C H APT ER N IN ETEEN
T H E H UNG ARIA N H ORNTA IL
The p ro sp ect o f t a lk in g f a ce-to -fa ce w ith S ir iu s w as a ll t h at s u sta in ed H arry
o ver th e n ex t f o rtn ig ht, th e o nly b rig ht s p ot o n a h oriz o n th at h ad n ev er lo oked
d ark er. T he s h ock o f f in din g h im se lf s c h ool c h am pio n h ad w orn o ff s lig htly n ow ,
a n d th e fe ar o f w hat w as fa cin g h im h ad s ta rte d to s in k in . T he fir s t ta sk w as
d ra w in g s te ad ily n eare r; h e fe lt a s th ough it w ere c ro uch in g a h ead o f h im h ik e
s o m e h orrif ic m onste r, b arrin g h is p ath . H e h ad n ev er s u ff e re d n erv es lik e th ese ;
t h ey w ere w ay b ey ond a n yth in g h e h ad e x perie n ced b efo re a Q uid ditc h m atc h ,
n ot e v en h is la st o ne a g ain st S ly th erin , w hic h h ad d ecid ed w ho w ould w in th e
Q uid ditc h C up. H arry w as f in din g it h ard to th in k a b out th e f u tu re a t a ll; h e f e lt
a s th ough h is w hole lif e h ad b een h ead in g u p to , a n d w ould f in is h w ith , th e f ir s t
t a sk .
Adm itte d ly , h e d id n't s e e h ow S ir iu s w as g oin g to m ak e h im f e el a n y b ette r
a b out h av in g to p erfo rm a n u nknow n p ie ce o f d if f ic u lt a n d d an gero us m ag ic in
f ro nt o f h undre d s o f p eo ple , b ut th e m ere sig ht o f a frie n dly fa ce w ould b e
s o m eth in g a t th e m om en t. H arry w ro te b ack to S ir iu s s a y in g th at h e w ould b e
b esid e th e co m mon ro om fir e at th e tim e S ir iu s h ad su ggeste d ; an d h e an d
H erm io ne s p en t a l o ng t im e g oin g o ver p la n s f o r f o rc in g a n y s tr a g gle rs o ut o f t h e
c o m mon r o om o n t h e n ig ht i n q uestio n. I f t h e w ors t c am e t o t h e w ors t, t h ey w ere
g oin g to d ro p a b ag o f D ungbom bs, b ut th ey h oped th ey w ould n't h av e to r e so rt
t o t h at— Filc h w ould s k in t h em a liv e.
In th e m ean tim e, lif e b ecam e e v en w ors e fo r H arry w ith in th e c o nfin es o f
t h e castle , fo r R ita Skeete r had publis h ed her pie ce ab out th e Triw iz ard
T ourn am en t, a n d it h ad tu rn ed o ut to b e n ot s o m uch a r e p ort o n th e to urn am en t
a s a h ig hly c o lo re d lif e s to ry o f H arry . M uch o f th e fro nt p ag e h ad b een g iv en
o ver to a p ic tu re o f H arry ; th e a rtic le ( c o ntin uin g o n p ag es tw o, s ix , a n d s e v en )
h ad been all ab out H arry , th e nam es of th e B eau xbato ns an d D urm str a n g
c h am pio ns (m is sp elle d ) h ad b een s q uash ed in to th e la st lin e o f th e a rtic le , a n d
C ed ric h ad n't b een m en tio ned a t a ll.
The a rtic le h ad a p peare d te n d ay s a g o, a n d H arry s till g ot a s ic k , b urn in g
f e elin g o f s h am e in h is s to m ach e v ery tim e h e th ought a b out it. R ita S keete r h ad
r e p orte d h im s a y in g a n a w fu l l o t o f t h in gs t h at h e c o uld n't r e m em ber e v er s a y in g
i n h is l if e , l e t a lo ne i n t h at b ro om c u pboard .
I s u ppose I g et m y s tr e n gth f ro m m y p are n ts . I k now th ey 'd b e v ery p ro ud
o f m e i f t h ey c o uld s e e m e n ow … Y es, s o m etim es a t n ig ht I s till c ry a b out t h em ,

I'm not ash am ed to ad m it it… I know noth in g w ill hurt m e durin g th e
to urn am en t, b ecau se t h ey 'r e w atc h in g o ver m e…
But R ita S keete r h ad g one e v en fu rth er th an tr a n sfo rm in g h is “ er's ” in to
lo ng, s ic k ly s e n te n ces: S he h ad i n te rv ie w ed o th er p eo ple a b out h im t o o.
Harry h as a t la st fo und lo ve a t H ogw arts . H is c lo se frie n d, C olin C re ev ey,
sa y s th at H arry is ra re ly s e en o ut o f th e c o m pan y o f o ne H erm io ne G ra n ger, a
stu nnin gly p re tty M uggle -b orn g ir l w ho, lik e H arry , is o ne o f th e to p s tu den ts in
th e s c h ool.
Fro m th e m om en t th e a rtic le h ad a p peare d , H arry h ad h ad to e n dure p eo ple
—Sly th erin s, m ain ly — quotin g it at him as he passe d an d m ak in g sn eerin g
co m men ts .
“W an t a h an ky, P otte r, i n c ase y ou s ta rt c ry in g i n T ra n sfig ura tio n?”
“S in ce w hen h av e y ou b een o ne o f t h e t o p s tu den ts i n t h e s c h ool, P otte r? O r
is t h is a s c h ool y ou a n d L ongbotto m h av e s e t u p t o geth er? ”
“H ey — Harry !”
“Y eah , th at's r ig ht! ” H arry f o und h im se lf s h outin g a s h e w heele d a ro und in
th e c o rrid or, h av in g h ad ju st a b out e n ough. “ I'v e ju st b een c ry in g m y e y es o ut
over m y d ead m um , a n d I 'm j u st o ff t o d o a b it m ore …
“N o— it w as j u st— you d ro pped y our q uill.”
It w as C ho. H arry f e lt t h e c o lo r r is in g i n h is f a ce.
“O h— rig ht— so rry ,” h e m utte re d , t a k in g t h e q uill b ack .
“E r… g ood l u ck o n T uesd ay,” s h e s a id . “ I r e ally h ope y ou d o w ell.”
Whic h l e ft H arry f e elin g e x tr e m ely s tu pid .
Herm io ne h ad c o m e in fo r h er fa ir sh are o f u nple asa n tn ess to o, b ut sh e
had n't yet sta rte d yellin g at in nocen t bysta n ders ; in fa ct, H arry w as fu ll of
ad m ir a tio n f o r t h e w ay s h e w as h an dlin g t h e s itu atio n.
“S tu nnin gly p re tty ? H er? ” P an sy P ark in so n h ad s h rie k ed th e fir s t tim e s h e
had c o m e fa ce-to -fa ce w ith H erm io ne a fte r R ita 's a rtic le h ad a p peare d . “ W hat
was s h e j u dgin g a g ain st— a c h ip m unk?”
“Ig nore it,” H erm io ne s a id in a d ig nif ie d v oic e, h old in g h er h ead in th e a ir
an d s ta lk in g p ast t h e s n ig gerin g S ly th erin g ir ls a s t h ough s h e c o uld n't h ear t h em .
“Ju st i g nore i t, H arry .”
But H arry c o uld n't ig nore it. R on h ad n't s p oken to h im a t a ll s in ce h e h ad
to ld h im a b out S nap e's d ete n tio ns. H arry h ad h alf h oped t h ey w ould m ak e t h in gs
up durin g th e tw o hours th ey w ere fo rc ed to pic k le ra ts ' bra in s in S nap e's
dungeo n, b ut th at h ad b een th e d ay R ita 's a rtic le h ad a p peare d , w hic h s e em ed to
hav e c o nfir m ed R on's b elie f t h at H arry w as r e ally e n jo yin g a ll t h e a tte n tio n.
Herm io ne w as f u rio us w ith t h e p air o f t h em ; s h e w en t f ro m o ne t o t h e o th er,
tr y in g t o f o rc e t h em t o t a lk t o e ach o th er, b ut H arry w as a d am an t: H e w ould t a lk

to R on a g ain o nly if R on a d m it te d th at H arry h ad n't p ut h is n am e in th e G oble t
of F ir e a n d a p olo giz ed f o r c allin g h im a l ia r.
“I d id n't s ta rt t h is ,” H arry s a id s tu bborn ly . “ It's h is p ro ble m .”
“Y ou m is s h im !” H erm io ne s a id im patie n tly . “ A nd I k now h e m is se s y ou
—”
“M is s h im ?” s a id H arry . “ I d on't m is s h im …
But t h is w as a d ow nrig ht lie . H arry lik ed H erm io ne v ery m uch , b ut s h e j u st
wasn 't th e s a m e a s R on. T here w as m uch h ess la u ghte r a n d a lo t m ore h an gin g
aro und in th e lib ra ry w hen H erm io ne w as y our b est frie n d. H arry still h ad n't
maste re d S um monin g C harm s, h e se em ed to h av e d ev elo ped so m eth in g o f a
blo ck a b out th em , a n d H erm io ne in sis te d th at le arn in g th e th eo ry w ould h elp .
They c o nse q uen tly s p en t a l o t o f t im e p orin g o ver b ooks d urin g t h eir l u nch tim es.
Vik to r K ru m w as in th e lib ra ry a n a w fu l lo t to o, a n d H arry w ondere d w hat
he w as u p to . W as h e s tu dyin g, o r w as h e lo okin g f o r th in gs to h elp h im th ro ugh
th e f ir s t ta sk ? H erm io ne o fte n c o m pla in ed a b out K ru m b ein g th ere — not th at h e
ev er b oth ere d th em — but b ecau se g ro ups o f g ig glin g g ir ls o fte n tu rn ed u p to s p y
on h im f ro m b eh in d b ooksh elv es, a n d H erm io ne f o und t h e n ois e d is tr a ctin g.
“H e's not ev en good-lo okin g!” sh e m utte re d an grily , gla rin g at K ru m 's
sh arp p ro file . “ T hey o nly lik e h im b ecau se h e's fa m ous! T hey w ould n't lo ok
tw ic e a t h im i f h e c o uld n't d o t h at W onkyF ain t t h in g— ”
“W ro nsk i F ein t,” s a id H arry , th ro ugh g ritte d te eth . Q uite a p art fro m lik in g
to g et Q uid ditc h te rm s c o rre ct, it c au se d h im a n oth er p an g to im ag in e R on's
ex pre ssio n i f h e c o uld h av e h eard H erm io ne t a lk in g a b out W onky-F ain ts .
It is a s tr a n ge th in g, b ut w hen y ou a re d re ad in g s o m eth in g, a n d w ould g iv e
an yth in g to s lo w d ow n tim e, it h as a d is o blig in g h ab it o f s p eed in g u p. T he d ay s
until th e f ir s t ta sk s e em ed to s li p b y a s th ough s o m eo ne h ad f ix ed th e c lo ck s to
work a t d ouble s p eed . H arry 's fe elin g o f b are ly c o ntr o lle d p an ic w as w ith h im
where v er h e w en t, a s e v erp re se n t a s t h e s n id e c o m men ts a b out t h e D aily P ro phet
artic le .
On t h e S atu rd ay b efo re t h e f ir s t t a sk , a ll s tu den ts i n t h e t h ir d y ear a n d a b ove
were p erm itte d to v is it th e v illa g e o f H ogsm ead e. H erm io ne to ld H arry th at it
would d o h im g ood to g et a w ay f ro m th e c astle f o r a b it, a n d H arry d id n't n eed
much p ers u asio n.
“W hat a b out R on, t h ough?” h e s a id . “ D on't y ou w an t t o g o w ith h im ?”
“O h… w ell… ” H erm io ne w en t s lig htly p in k. “ I th ought w e m ig ht m eet u p
with h im i n t h e T hre e B ro om stic k s… ”
“N o,” s a id H arry f la tly .
“O h H arry , t h is i s s o s tu pid — ”
“I'l l co m e, but I'm not m eetin g R on, an d I'm w earin g m y In vis ib ility

Clo ak .”
“O h a ll r ig ht th en … ” H erm io ne s n ap ped , “ b ut I h ate ta lk in g to y ou in th at
clo ak , I n ev er k now i f I 'm l o okin g a t y ou o r n ot.”
So H arry put on his In vis ib ility C lo ak in th e dorm ito ry , w en t back
dow nsta ir s , a n d t o geth er h e a n d H erm io ne s e t o ff f o r H ogsm ead e.
Harry fe lt w onderfu lly fre e u nder th e clo ak ; h e w atc h ed o th er stu den ts
walk in g p ast th em a s th ey e n te re d th e v illa g e, m ost o f th em sp ortin g S upport
Ced ric D ig gory ! b ad ges, b ut n o h orrib le r e m ark s c am e h is w ay f o r a c h an ge, a n d
nobody w as q uotin g t h at s tu pid a rtic le .
“P eo ple k eep lo okin g a t m e n ow ,” s a id H erm io ne g ru m pily a s th ey c am e
out o f H oney dukes S w eets h op la te r, e atin g la rg e c re am -fille d c h oco la te s. “ T hey
th in k I 'm t a lk in g t o m yse lf .”
“D on't m ove y our l ip s s o m uch t h en .”
“C om e o n, p le ase j u st t a k e o ff y our c lo ak f o r a b it, n o o ne's g oin g t o b oth er
you h ere .”
“O h y eah ?” s a id H arry . “ L ook b eh in d y ou.”
Rita S keete r a n d h er p hoto gra p her f rie n d h ad ju st e m erg ed f ro m th e T hre e
Bro om stic k s p ub. T alk in g in lo w v oic es, th ey p asse d r ig ht b y H erm io ne w ith out
hookin g a t h er. H arry b ack ed in to th e w all o f H oney dukes to s to p R ita S keete r
fro m h ittin g h im w ith h er c ro co dile -s k in h an dbag . W hen th ey w ere g one, H arry
sa id , “ S he's s ta y in g i n t h e v illa g e. I b et s h e's c o m in g t o w atc h t h e f ir s t t a sk .”
As h e s a id it, h is s to m ach flo oded w ith a w av e o f m olte n p an ic . H e d id n't
men tio n th is ; h e a n d H erm io ne h ad n't d is c u sse d w hat w as c o m in g in th e fir s t
ta sk m uch ; h e h ad t h e f e elin g s h e d id n't w an t t o t h in k a b out i t.
“S he's g one,” s a id H erm io ne, l o okin g r ig ht t h ro ugh H arry t o w ard t h e e n d o f
th e s tr e et. “ W hy d on't w e g o a n d h av e a b utte rb eer i n t h e T hre e B ro om stic k s, i t's
a b it c o ld , is n 't it? Y ou d on't h av e to ta lk to R on!” s h e a d ded ir rita b ly , c o rre ctly
in te rp re tin g h is s ile n ce.
The Thre e B ro om stic k s w as pack ed , m ain ly w ith H ogw arts stu den ts
en jo yin g th eir fre e a fte rn oon, b ut a ls o w ith a v arie ty o f m ag ic al p eo ple H arry
ra re ly s a w a n yw here e ls e . H arry s u ppose d th at a s H ogsm ead e w as th e o nly a ll-
wiz ard v illa g e in B rita in , it w as a b it o f a h av en fo r c re atu re s lik e h ag s, w ho
were n ot a s a d ep t a s w iz ard s a t d is g uis in g t h em se lv es.
It w as v ery h ard to m ove th ro ugh c ro w ds in th e I n vis ib ility C lo ak , in c ase
you a ccid en ta lly tr o d o n s o m eo ne, w hic h te n ded to le ad to a w kw ard q uestio ns.
Harry e d ged s lo w ly to w ard a s p are ta b le in th e c o rn er w hile H erm io ne w en t to
buy d rin ks. O n h is w ay th ro ugh th e p ub, H arry sp otte d R on, w ho w as sittin g
with F re d , G eo rg e, a n d L ee J o rd an . R esis tin g th e u rg e to g iv e R on a g ood h ard
poke i n t h e b ack o f t h e h ead , h e f in ally r e ach ed t h e t a b le a n d s a t d ow n a t i t.

Herm io ne j o in ed h im a m om en t l a te r a n d s lip ped h im a b utte rb eer u nder h is
clo ak .
“I lo ok lik e s u ch a n id io t, s ittin g h ere o n m y o w n,” s h e m utte re d . “ L uck y I
bro ught s o m eth in g t o d o.”
And s h e p ulle d o ut a n ote b ook i n w hic h s h e h ad b een k eep in g a r e co rd o f S .
P. E . W . m em bers . H arry s a w h is a n d R on's n am es a t th e to p o f th e v ery s h ort
lis t. It se em ed a lo ng tim e a g o th at th ey h ad sa t m ak in g u p th ose p re d ic tio ns
to geth er, an d H erm io ne had tu rn ed up an d ap poin te d th em se cre ta ry an d
tr e asu re r.
“Y ou k now , m ay be I s h ould tr y a n d g et s o m e o f th e v illa g ers in volv ed in S .
P. E . W .,” H erm io ne s a id t h oughtf u lly , l o okin g a ro und t h e p ub.
“Y eah , rig ht,” sa id H arry . H e to ok a sw ig o f b utte rb eer u nder h is c lo ak .
“H erm io ne, w hen a re y ou g oin g t o g iv e u p o n t h is s p ew s tu ff ? ”
“W hen h ouse -e lv es h av e d ecen t w ag es a n d w ork in g c o nditio ns!” s h e h is se d
back . “ Y ou k now , I 'm s ta rtin g to th in k it's tim e f o r m ore d ir e ct a ctio n. I w onder
how y ou g et i n to t h e s c h ool k itc h en s? ”
“N o i d ea, a sk F re d a n d G eo rg e,” s a id H arry .
Herm io ne la p se d in to th oughtf u l s ile n ce, w hile H arry d ra n k h is b utte rb eer,
watc h in g th e p eo ple in th e p ub. A ll o f th em lo oked c h eerfu l a n d r e la x ed . E rn ie
Macm illa n a n d H an nah A bbot w ere s w ap pin g C hoco la te F ro g c ard s a t a n earb y
ta b le ; b oth o f th em sp ortin g S upport C ed ric D ig gory ! b ad ges o n th eir c lo ak s.
Rig ht o ver b y th e d oor h e s a w C ho a n d a la rg e g ro up o f h er R av en cla w f rie n ds.
She w asn 't w earin g a C ed ric bad ge th ough… T his ch eere d up H arry very
slig htly .
What w ould n't h e h av e g iv en to b e o ne o f th ese p eo phe, sittin g aro und
la u ghin g a n d ta lk in g, w ith n oth in g to w orry a b out b ut h om ew ork ? H e im ag in ed
how it w ould h av e f e lt to b e h ere if h is n am e h ad n't c o m e o ut o f th e G oble t o f
Fir e . H e w ould n't b e w earin g t h e I n vis ib ility C lo ak , f o r o ne t h in g. R on w ould b e
sittin g w ith h im . T he th re e o f th em w ould p ro bab ly b e h ap pily im ag in in g w hat
dead ly d an gero us ta sk th e s c h ool c h am pio ns w ould b e f a cin g o n T uesd ay. H e'd
hav e b een re ally h ookin g fo rw ard to it, w atc h in g th em d o w hate v er it w as…
ch eerin g o n C ed ric w ith e v ery one e ls e , s a fe i n a s e at a t t h e b ack o f t h e s ta n ds…
He w ondere d h ow th e o th er c h am pio ns w ere fe elin g. E very tim e h e h ad
se en C ed ric la te ly , h e h ad b een s u rro unded b y a d m ir e rs a n d lo okin g n erv ous b ut
ex cite d . H arry g lim pse d F le u r D ela co ur fro m tim e to tim e in th e c o rrid ors ; s h e
lo oked e x actly a s s h e a lw ay s d id , h au ghty a n d u nru ff le d . A nd K ru m ju st s a t in
th e l ib ra ry , p orin g o ver b ooks.
Harry t h ought o f S ir iu s, a n d t h e t ig ht, t e n se k not i n h is c h est s e em ed t o e ase
slig htly . H e w ould b e s p eak in g to h im in ju st o ver tw elv e h ours , f o r to nig ht w as

th e n ig ht th ey w ere m eetin g a t th e c o m mon r o om f ir e — assu m in g n oth in g w en t
wro ng, a s e v ery th in g e ls e h ad d one l a te ly …
“L ook, i t's H ag rid !” s a id H erm io ne.
The b ack o f H ag rid 's e n orm ous s h ag gy h ead — he h ad m erc if u lly a b an doned
his b unch es— em erg ed o ver th e c ro w d. H arry w ondere d w hy h e h ad n't s p otte d
him at o nce, as H ag rid w as so la rg e, b ut sta n din g u p care fu lly , h e sa w th at
Hag rid h ad b een le an in g lo w , ta lk in g to P ro fe sso r M oody. H ag rid h ad h is u su al
en orm ous ta n kard in fro nt o f h im , b ut M oody w as d rin kin g fro m h is h ip fla sk .
Mad am R osm erta , t h e p re tty l a n dla d y, d id n't s e em t o t h in k m uch o f t h is ; s h e w as
lo okin g a sk an ce a t M oody a s sh e c o lle cte d g la sse s fro m ta b le s a ro und th em .
Perh ap s s h e th ought it w as a n in su lt to h er m ulle d m ead , b ut H arry k new b ette r.
Moody h ad to ld th em a ll d urin g th eir la st D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts le sso n
th at h e p re fe rre d t o p re p are h is o w n f o od a n d d rin k a t a ll t im es, a s i t w as s o e asy
fo r D ark w iz ard s t o p ois o n a n u natte n ded c u p.
As H arry w atc h ed , h e s a w H ag rid a n d M oody g et u p to le av e. H e w av ed ,
th en re m em bere d th at H ag rid c o uld n't se e h im . M oody, h ow ev er, p au se d , h is
mag ic al e y e o n th e c o rn er w here H arry w as s ta n din g. H e ta p ped H ag rid in th e
sm all o f th e b ack (b ein g u nab le to re ach h is s h ould er), m utte re d s o m eth in g to
him , a n d t h en t h e p air o f t h em m ad e t h eir w ay b ack a cro ss t h e p ub t o w ard H arry
an d H erm io ne's t a b le .
“A ll r ig ht, H erm io ne?” s a id H ag rid l o udly .
“H ello ,” s a id H erm io ne, s m ilin g b ack .
Moody lim ped aro und th e ta b le an d b en t d ow n; H arry th ought h e w as
re ad in g t h e S . P . E . W . n ote b ook, u ntil h e m utte re d , “ N ic e c lo ak , P otte r.”
Harry s ta re d a t h im in a m azem en t. T he la rg e c h unk m is sin g f ro m M oody's
nose w as p artic u la rly o bvio us a t a f e w i n ch es' d is ta n ce. M oody g rin ned .
“C an y our e y e— I m ean , c an y ou— ?”
“Y eah , i t c an s e e t h ro ugh I n vis ib ility C lo ak s,” M oody s a id q uie tly . “ A nd i t's
co m e i n u se fu l a t t im es, I c an t e ll y ou.”
Hag rid w as b eam in g d ow n a t H arry to o. H arry k new H ag rid c o uld n't s e e
him , b ut M oody h ad o bvio usly to ld H ag rid h e w as th ere . H ag rid n ow b en t d ow n
on th e p re te x t o f r e ad in g th e S . P . E . W . n ote b ook a s w ell, a n d s a id in a w his p er
so lo w th at o nly H arry c o uld h ear it, “ H arry , m eet m e to nig ht a t m id nig ht a t m e
cab in . W ear t h at c lo ak .”
Str a ig hte n in g u p, H ag rid s a id l o udly , “ N ic e t e r s e e y eh , H erm io ne,” w in ked ,
an d d ep arte d . M oody f o llo w ed h im .
“W hy d oes H ag rid w an t m e to m eet h im a t m id nig ht? ” H arry sa id , v ery
su rp ris e d .
“D oes h e?” s a id H erm io ne, lo okin g s ta rtle d . “ I w onder w hat h e's u p to ? I

don't k now w heth er y ou s h ould g o, H arry … ” S he lo oked n erv ously a ro und a n d
his se d , “ It m ig ht m ak e y ou l a te f o r S ir iu s.”
It w as tr u e th at g oin g d ow n to H ag rid 's a t m id nig ht w ould m ean c u ttin g h is
meetin g w ith S ir iu s very fin e in deed ; H erm io ne su ggeste d se n din g H ed w ig
dow n to H ag rid 's to te ll him he co uld n't go— alw ay s assu m in g sh e w ould
co nse n t to ta k e th e n ote , o f c o urs e — Harry , h ow ev er, th ought it b ette r ju st to b e
quic k a t w hate v er H ag rid w an te d h im fo r. H e w as v ery c u rio us to k now w hat
th is m ig ht b e; H ag rid h ad n ev er a sk ed H arry t o v is it h im s o l a te a t n ig ht.
At h alf p ast e le v en th at e v en in g, H arry , w ho h ad p re te n ded to g o u p to b ed
early , p ulle d th e I n vis ib ility C lo ak b ack o ver h im se lf a n d c re p t b ack d ow nsta ir s
th ro ugh th e c o m mon r o om . Q uite a f e w p eo ple w ere s till in th ere . T he C re ev ey
bro th ers h ad m an ag ed to g et h old o f a s ta ck o f S upport C ed ric D ig gory ! b ad ges
an d w ere tr y in g to bew itc h th em to m ak e th em sa y S upport H arry P otte r!
in ste ad . S o f a r, h ow ev er, a ll t h ey h ad m an ag ed t o d o w as g et t h e b ad ges s tu ck o n
PO TTER S T IN KS. H arry c re p t p ast th em to th e p ortr a it h ole a n d w aite d fo r a
min ute o r s o , k eep in g a n e y e o n h is w atc h . T hen H erm io ne o pen ed th e F at L ad y
fo r h im f ro m o uts id e a s th ey h ad p la n ned . H e s lip ped p ast h er w ith a w his p ere d
“T han ks!” a n d s e t o ff t h ro ugh t h e c astle .
The g ro unds w ere v ery d ark . H arry w alk ed d ow n t h e l a w n t o w ard t h e l ig hts
sh in in g in H ag rid 's c ab in . T he in sid e o f th e e n orm ous B eau xbato ns c arria g e w as
als o l it u p; H arry c o uld h ear M ad am e M ax im e t a lk in g i n sid e i t a s h e k nock ed o n
Hag rid 's f ro nt d oor.
“Y ou th ere , H arry ?” H ag rid w his p ere d , open in g th e door an d lo okin g
aro und.
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry , s lip pin g i n sid e t h e c ab in a n d p ullin g t h e c lo ak d ow n o ff
his h ead . “ W hat's u p?”
“G ot s u m mat t e r s h ow y eh ,” s a id H ag rid .
There w as a n a ir o f e n orm ous e x cite m en t a b out H ag rid . H e w as w earin g a
flo w er th at re se m ble d an o vers iz ed artic h oke in h is b utto nhole . It lo oked as
th ough h e h ad a b an doned th e u se o f a x le g re ase , b ut h e h ad c erta in ly a tte m pte d
to c o m b h is h air — Harry c o uld s e e t h e c o m b's b ro ken t e eth t a n gle d i n i t.
“W hat'r e y ou sh ow in g m e?” H arry sa id w arily , w onderin g if th e sk re w ts
had la id e g gs, o r H ag rid h ad m an ag ed to b uy a n oth er g ia n t th re e-h ead ed d og o ff
a s tr a n ger i n a p ub.
“C om e w ith m e, k eep q uie t, a n ' k eep y ers e lf c o vere d w ith th at c lo ak ,” s a id
Hag rid . “ W e w on' t a k e F an g, h e w on' l ik e i t…
“L is te n , H ag rid , I c an 't s ta y lo ng… I'v e g ot to b e b ack u p a t th e c astle b y
one o 'c lo ck — ”
But H ag rid w asn 't lis te n in g; h e w as o pen in g th e c ab in d oor a n d s tr id in g o ff

in to th e n ig ht. H arry h urrie d to fo llo w an d fo und, to h is g re at su rp ris e , th at
Hag rid w as l e ad in g h im t o t h e B eau xbato ns c arria g e.
“H ag rid , w hat— ?”
“S hhh!” s a id H ag rid , a n d h e k nock ed th re e tim es o n th e d oor b earin g th e
cro sse d g old en w an ds.
Mad am e M ax im e o pen ed it. S he w as w earin g a s ilk s h aw l w ra p ped a ro und
her m assiv e s h ould ers . S he s m ile d w hen s h e s a w H ag rid .
“A h, 'A grid … i t i s t im e?”
“B ong-s e w er,” s a id H ag rid , b eam in g a t h er, a n d h old in g o ut a h an d to h elp
her d ow n t h e g old en s te p s.
Mad am e M ax im e c lo se d th e d oor b eh in d h er, H ag rid o ff e re d h er h is a rm ,
an d th ey s e t o ff a ro und th e e d g e o f th e p ad dock c o nta in in g M ad am e M ax im e's
gia n t w in ged h ors e s, w ith H arry , to ta lly b ew ild ere d , ru nnin g to k eep u p w ith
th em . H ad H ag rid w an te d to s h ow h im M ad am e M ax im e? H e c o uld s e e h er a n y
old t im e h e w an te d … s h e w asn 't e x actly h ard t o m is s…
But it se em ed th at M ad am e M ax im e w as in fo r th e sa m e tr e at a s H arry ,
becau se a fte r a w hile s h e s a id p la y fu lly , “ W air i s i t y ou a re t a k in g m e, 'A grid ?”
“Y eh 'l l e n jo y th is ,” s a id H ag rid g ru ff ly , “ w orth s e ein ', tr u st m e. O n'y — don'
go t e llin ' a n yone I s h ow ed y eh , r ig ht? Y eh 'r e n ot s 'p ose d t e r k now .”
“O f c o urs e n ot,” s a id M ad am e M ax im e, f lu tte rin g h er l o ng b la ck e y ela sh es.
And s till th ey w alk ed , H arry g ettin g m ore a n d m ore ir rita te d a s h e jo gged
alo ng in th eir w ak e, c h eck in g h is w atc h e v ery n ow a n d th en . H ag rid h ad s o m e
hare b ra in ed s c h em e in h an d, w hic h m ig ht m ak e h im m is s S ir iu s. If th ey d id n't
get th ere s o on, h e w as g oin g to tu rn a ro und, g o s tr a ig ht b ack to th e c astle , a n d
le av e H ag rid t o e n jo y h is m oonlit s tr o ll w ith M ad am e M ax im e.
But th en — when th ey h ad w alk ed s o f a r a ro und th e p erim ete r o f th e f o re st
th at t h e c astle a n d t h e l a k e w ere o ut o f s ig ht— Harry h eard s o m eth in g. M en w ere
sh outin g u p a h ead … t h en c am e a d eafe n in g, e ars p littin g r o ar…
Hag rid le d M ad am e M ax im e a ro und a c lu m p o f tr e es a n d c am e to a h alt.
Harry h urrie d u p a lo ngsid e th em — fo r a s p lit s e co nd, h e th oug ht h e w as s e ein g
bonfir e s, a n d m en d artin g a ro und t h em — an d t h en h is m outh f e ll o pen .
Dra g ons.
Four fu lly g ro w n, en orm ous, v ic io us-lo okin g d ra g ons w ere re arin g o nto
th eir h in d l e g s i n sid e a n e n clo su re f e n ced w ith t h ic k p la n ks o f w ood, r o arin g a n d
sn ortin g— to rre n ts of fir e w ere sh ootin g in to th e dark sk y fro m th eir open ,
fa n ged m outh s, fif ty fe et a b ove th e g ro und o n th eir o uts tr e tc h ed n eck s. T here
was a silv ery -b lu e o ne w ith lo ng, p oin te d h orn s, sn ap pin g a n d sn arlin g a t th e
wiz ard s o n th e g ro und; a sm ooth -s c ale d g re en o ne, w hic h w as w rith in g an d
sta m pin g w ith a ll its m ig ht; a re d o ne w ith a n o dd frin ge o f fin e g old sp ik es

aro und its fa ce, w hic h w as s h ootin g m ush ro om -s h ap ed fir e c lo uds in to th e a ir ;
an d a g ig an tic b la ck o ne, m ore liz ard -h ik e th an th e o th ers , w hic h w as n eare st to
th em .
At le ast th ir ty w iz ard s, s e v en o r e ig ht to e ach d ra g on, w ere a tte m ptin g to
co ntr o l th em , p ullin g o n th e c h ain s c o nnecte d to h eav y le ath er str a p s a ro und
th eir n eck s a n d l e g s. M esm eriz ed , H arry l o oked u p, h ig h a b ove h im , a n d s a w t h e
ey es o f t h e b la ck d ra g on, w ith v ertic al p upils l ik e a c at's , b ulg in g w ith e ith er f e ar
or ra g e, h e c o uld n't te ll w hic h … It w as m ak in g a h orrib le n ois e , a y ow lin g,
sc re ech in g s c re am .
“K eep b ack th ere , H ag rid !” y elle d a w iz ard n ear th e f e n ce, s tr a in in g o n th e
ch ain h e w as h old in g. “ T hey c an s h oot f ir e a t a r a n ge o f tw en ty f e et, y ou k now !
I'v e s e en t h is H orn ta il d o f o rty !”
“Is 'n ' i t b eau tif u l? ” s a id H ag rid s o ftly .
“It's n o g ood!” y elle d a n oth er w iz ard . “ S tu nnin g S pells , o n th e c o unt o f
th re e!”
Harry s a w e ach o f t h e d ra g on k eep ers p ull o ut h is w an d.
“S tu pefy !” th ey sh oute d in u nis o n, a n d th e S tu nnin g S pells sh ot in to th e
dark ness lik e fie ry ro ck ets , b urs tin g in sh ow ers o f sta rs o n th e d ra g ons' sc aly
hid es—
Harry w atc h ed th e d ra g on n eare st to th em te ete r d an gero usly o n its b ack
le g s; i ts j a w s s tr e tc h ed w id e i n a s ile n t h ow l; i ts n ostr ils w ere s u dden ly d ev oid o f
fla m e, th ough s till s m okin g— th en , v ery s lo w ly , it fe ll. S ev era l to ns o f s in ew y,
sc aly -b la ck d ra g on h it t h e g ro und w ith a t h ud t h at H arry c o uld h av e s w orn m ad e
th e t r e es b eh in d h im q uak e.
The d ra g on k eep ers lo w ere d th eir w an ds a n d w alk ed f o rw ard to th eir f a lle n
ch arg es, e ach o f w hic h w as th e s iz e o f a s m all h ill. T hey h urrie d to tig hte n th e
ch ain s a n d fa ste n th em s e cu re ly to ir o n p eg s, w hic h th ey fo rc ed d eep in to th e
gro und w ith t h eir w an ds.
“W an ' a c lo se r l o ok?” H ag rid a sk ed M ad am e M ax im e e x cite d ly . T he p air o f
th em m oved rig ht u p to th e fe n ce, a n d H arry fo llo w ed . T he w iz ard w ho h ad
warn ed H ag rid n ot to c o m e a n y c lo se r tu rn ed , a n d H arry re aliz ed w ho it w as:
Charlie W easle y.
“A ll r ig ht, H ag rid ?” h e p an te d , c o m in g o ver to ta lk . “ T hey s h ould b e o kay
now — we p ut th em o ut w ith a S le ep in g D ra ft o n th e w ay h ere , th ought it m ig ht
be b ette r f o r th em to w ak e u p in th e d ark a n d th e q uie t— but, lik e y ou s a w , th ey
were n 't h ap py, n ot h ap py a t a ll— ”
“W hat b re ed s y ou g ot h ere , C harlie ?” sa id H ag rid , g azin g a t th e c lo se st
dra g on, t h e b la ck o ne, w ith s o m eth in g c h ose to r e v ere n ce. I ts e y es w ere s till j u st
open . H arry c o uld se e a str ip o f g le am in g y ello w b en eath its w rin kle d b la ck

ey elid .
“T his is a H ungaria n H orn ta il,” sa id C harlie . “ T here 's a C om mon W els h
Gre en o ver th ere , th e s m alle r o ne— a S w ed is h S hort- S nout, th at b lu e-g ra y — an d
a C hin ese F ir e b all, t h at's t h e r e d .”
Charlie lo oked a ro und; M ad am e M ax im e w as str o llin g a w ay a ro und th e
ed ge o f t h e e n clo su re , g azin g a t t h e s tu nned d ra g ons.
“I d id n't k now y ou w ere b rin gin g h er, H ag rid ,” C harlie s a id , f ro w nin g. “ T he
ch am pio ns are n 't su ppose d to know w hat's co m in g— sh e's bound to te ll her
stu den t, i s n 't s h e?”
“Ju s' th ought sh e'd lik e te r se e 'e m ,” sh ru gged H ag rid , still gazin g,
en ra p tu re d , a t t h e d ra g ons.
“R eally r o m an tic d ate , H ag rid ,” s a id C harlie , s h ak in g h is h ead .
“F our… ” s a id H ag rid , “ so it's o ne f e r e ach o ' th e c h am pio ns, is it? W hat'v e
th ey g otta d o— fig ht 'e m ?”
“Ju st g et p ast t h em , I t h in k,” s a id C harlie . “ W e'l l b e o n h an d i f i t g ets n asty ,
Extin guis h in g S pells a t th e re ad y. T hey w an te d n estin g m oth ers , I d on't k now
why… b ut I te ll y ou th is , I d on't e n vy th e o ne w ho g ets th e H orn ta il. V ic io us
th in g. I ts b ack e n d's a s d an gero us a s i ts f ro nt, l o ok.”
Charlie p oin te d to w ard th e H orn ta il's ta il, an d H arry sa w lo ng, b ro nze-
co lo re d s p ik es p ro tr u din g a lo ng i t e v ery f e w i n ch es.
Fiv e of C harlie 's fe llo w keep ers sta g gere d up to th e H orn ta il at th at
mom en t, c arry in g a c lu tc h o f h uge g ra n ite -g ra y e g gs b etw een th em in a b la n ket.
They p la ced th em care fu lly at th e H orn ta il's sid e. H ag rid le t o ut a m oan o f
lo ngin g.
“I'v e g ot th em c o unte d , H ag rid ,” s a id C harlie s te rn ly . T hen h e s a id , “ H ow 's
Harry ?”
“F in e,” s a id H ag rid . H e w as s till g azin g a t t h e e g gs.
“Ju st h ope h e's still fin e afte r h e's fa ced th is lo t,” sa id C harlie g rim ly ,
lo okin g o ut o ver th e d ra g ons' e n clo su re . “ I d id n't d are te ll M um w hat h e's g ot to
do f o r th e f ir s t ta sk ; s h e's a lr e ad y h av in g k itte n s a b out h im … ” C harlie im ita te d
his m oth er's a n xio us v oic e. “ H ow c o uld th ey le t h im e n te r th at to urn am en t, h e's
much t o o y oung! I t h ought t h ey w ere a ll s a fe , I t h ought t h ere w as g oin g t o b e a n
ag e lim it! ' S he w as in f lo ods a fte r th at D aily P ro phet a rtic le a b out h im . 'H e s till
crie s a b out h is p are n ts ! O h b le ss h im , I n ev er k new !”
Harry h ad h ad e n ough. T ru stin g to th e f a ct th at H ag rid w ould n't m is s h im ,
with th e a ttr a ctio ns o f fo ur d ra g ons a n d M ad am e M ax im e to o ccu py h im , h e
tu rn ed s ile n tly a n d b eg an t o w alk a w ay, b ack t o t h e c astle .
He d id n't k now w heth er h e w as g la d h e'd se en w hat w as c o m in g o r n ot.
Perh ap s th is w ay w as b ette r. T he f ir s t s h ock w as o ver n ow . M ay be if h e'd s e en

th e d ra g ons f o r t h e f ir s t t im e o n T uesd ay, h e w ould h av e p asse d o ut c o ld i n f ro nt
of t h e w hole s c h ool… b ut m ay be h e w ould a n yw ay … H e w as g oin g t o b e a rm ed
with h is w an d— whic h , ju st n ow , fe lt lik e n oth in g m ore th an a n arro w s tr ip o f
wood— ag ain st a f if ty -fo ot- h ig h, s c aly , s p ik e-rid den , f ir e -b re ath in g d ra g on. A nd
he h ad t o g et p ast i t. W ith e v ery one w atc h in g. H ow ?
Harry sp ed u p, sk ir tin g th e e d ge o f th e fo re st; h e h ad ju st u nder fif te en
min ute s to g et b ack to th e f ir e sid e a n d ta lk to S ir iu s, a n d h e c o uld n't r e m em ber,
ev er, w an tin g to ta lk to s o m eo ne m ore th an h e d id rig ht n ow — when , w ith out
warn in g, h e r a n i n to s o m eth in g v ery s o lid .
Harry f e ll b ack w ard , h is g la sse s a sk ew , c lu tc h in g th e c lo ak a ro und h im . A
voic e n earb y s a id , “ O uch ! W ho's t h ere ?”
Harry h astily c h eck ed th at th e c lo ak w as c o verin g h im a n d h ay v ery s till,
sta rin g up at th e dark outlin e of th e w iz ard he had hit. H e re co gniz ed th e
goate e… i t w as K ark aro ff .
“W ho's th ere ?” s a id K ark aro ff a g ain , v ery s u sp ic io usly , lo okin g a ro und in
th e d ark ness. H arry re m ain ed still a n d sile n t. A fte r a m in ute o r so , K ark aro ff
se em ed to d ecid e th at h e h ad h it s o m e s o rt o f a n im al; h e w as lo okin g a ro und a t
wais t h eig ht, a s th ough e x pectin g to se e a d og. T hen h e c re p t b ack u nder th e
co ver of th e tr e es an d sta rte d to ed ge fo rw ard to w ard th e pla ce w here th e
dra g ons w ere .
Very s lo w ly a n d v ery c are fu lly , H arry g ot t o h is f e et a n d s e t o ff a g ain a s f a st
as h e c o uld w ith out m ak in g to o m uch n ois e , h urry in g th ro ugh th e d ark ness b ack
to w ard H ogw arts .
He h ad n o d oubt w hats o ev er w hat K ark aro ff w as u p to . H e h ad s n eak ed o ff
his s h ip to tr y a n d fin d o ut w hat th e fir s t ta sk w as g oin g to b e. H e m ig ht e v en
hav e s p otte d H ag rid a n d M ad am e M ax im e h ead in g o ff a ro und t h e f o re st t o geth er
—th ey w ere h ard ly d if f ic u lt t o s p ot a t a d is ta n ce… a n d n ow a ll K ark aro ff h ad t o
do w as f o llo w th e s o und o f v oic es, a n d h e, lik e M ad am e M ax im e, w ould k now
what w as i n s to re f o r t h e c h am pio ns.
By t h e l o oks o f i t, t h e o nly c h am pio n w ho w ould b e f a cin g t h e u nknow n o n
Tuesd ay w as C ed ric .
Harry re ach ed th e c astle , s lip ped in th ro ugh th e fro nt d oors , a n d b eg an to
clim b th e m arb le sta ir s ; h e w as v ery o ut o f b re ath , b ut h e d id n't d are slo w
dow n… H e h ad l e ss t h an f iv e m in ute s t o g et u p t o t h e f ir e .
“B ald erd ash !” h e g asp ed a t t h e F at L ad y, w ho w as s n oozin g i n h er f ra m e i n
fro nt o f t h e p ortr a it h ole .
“If y ou s a y s o ,” s h e m utte re d s le ep ily , w ith out o pen in g h er e y es, a n d th e
pic tu re s w ung fo rw ard to a d m it h im . H arry c lim bed in sid e. T he c o m mon ro om
was d ese rte d , a n d, ju dgin g b y th e fa ct th at it s m elle d q uite n orm al, H erm io ne

had n ot n eed ed to se t o ff an y D ungbom bs to en su re th at h e an d S ir iu s g ot
priv acy.
Harry p ulle d o ff th e In vis ib ility C lo ak a n d th re w h im se lf in to a n a rm ch air
in fro nt o f th e fir e . T he ro om w as in se m id ark ness; th e fla m es w ere th e o nly
so urc e o f lig ht. N earb y, o n a ta b le , th e S upport C ed ric D ig gory ! b ad ges th e
Cre ev ey s h ad b een tr y in g to im pro ve w ere g lin tin g in th e fir e lig ht. T hey n ow
re ad P O TTER R EA LLY S T IN KS. H arry lo oked back in to th e fla m es, an d
ju m ped .
Sir iu s's h ead w as sittin g in th e fir e . If H arry h ad n't se en M r. D ig gory d o
ex actly th is b ack in th e W easle y s' k itc h en , it w ould h av e s c are d h im o ut o f h is
wits . In ste ad , h is fa ce b re ak in g in to th e fir s t sm ile h e h ad w orn fo r d ay s, h e
sc ra m ble d o ut o f h is c h air , c ro uch ed d ow n b y th e h earth , a n d sa id , “ S ir iu s—
how 'r e y ou d oin g?”
Sir iu s lo oked d if f e re n t fro m H arry 's m em ory o f h im . W hen th ey h ad s a id
good-b ye, S ir iu s's f a ce h ad b een g au nt a n d s u nken , s u rro unded b y a q uan tity o f
lo ng, b la ck , m atte d h air — but t h e h air w as s h ort a n d c le an n ow , S ir iu s's f a ce w as
fu lle r, a n d h e l o oked y ounger, m uch m ore l ik e t h e o nly p hoto gra p h H arry h ad o f
him , w hic h h ad b een t a k en a t t h e P otte rs ' w ed din g.
“N ev er m in d m e, h ow a re y ou?” s a id S ir iu s s e rio usly .
“I'm — ” F or a se co nd, H arry tr ie d to sa y “fin e”— but h e co uld n't d o it.
Befo re h e c o uld s to p h im se lf , h e w as ta lk in g m ore th an h e'd ta lk ed in d ay s—
ab out h ow n o o ne b elie v ed h e h ad n't e n te re d t h e t o urn am en t o f h is o w n f re e w ill,
how R ita S keete r h ad lie d a b out h im in th e D aily P ro phet, h ow h e c o uld n't w alk
dow n a c o rrid or w ith out b ein g sn eere d a t— an d a b out R on, R on n ot b elie v in g
him , R on's j e alo usy …
“… a n d n ow H ag rid 's j u st s h ow n m e w hat's c o m in g i n t h e f ir s t t a sk , a n d i t's
dra g ons, S ir iu s, a n d I 'm a g oner,” h e f in is h ed d esp era te ly .
Sir iu s l o oked a t h im , e y es f u ll o f c o ncern , e y es t h at h ad n ot y et l o st t h e l o ok
th at A zk ab an h ad g iv en th em — th at d ead en ed , h au nte d lo ok H e h ad le t H arry
ta lk h im se lf in to s ile n ce w ith out in te rru ptio n, b ut n ow h e s a id , “ D ra g ons w e c an
deal w ith , H arry , b ut w e'l l g et to th at in a m in ute — I h av en 't g ot lo ng h ere … I 'v e
bro ken i n to a w iz ard in g h ouse t o u se t h e f ir e , b ut t h ey c o uld b e b ack a t a n y t im e.
There a re t h in gs I n eed t o w arn y ou a b out.”
“W hat? ” s a id H arry , fe elin g h is s p ir its s lip a fu rth er fe w n otc h es… S ure ly
th ere c o uld b e n oth in g w ors e t h an d ra g ons c o m in g?
“K ark aro ff ,” sa id S ir iu s. “ H arry , h e w as a D eath E ate r. Y ou k now w hat
Death E ate rs a re , d on't y ou?”
“Y es— he— what? ”
“H e w as c au ght, h e w as in A zk ab an w ith m e, b ut h e g ot re le ase d . I'd b et

ev ery th in g th at's w hy D um ble d ore w an te d a n A uro r a t H ogw arts th is y ear— to
keep a n e y e o n h im . M oody c au ght K ark aro ff . P ut h im in to A zk ab an in th e f ir s t
pla ce.”
“K ark aro ff got re le ase d ?” H arry sa id slo w ly — his bra in se em ed to be
str u gglin g to a b so rb y et a n oth er p ie ce o f s h ock in g in fo rm atio n. “ W hy d id th ey
re le ase h im ?”
“H e d id a d eal w ith th e M in is tr y o f M ag ic ,” s a id S ir iu s b itte rly . “ H e s a id
he'd s e en th e e rro r o f h is w ay s, a n d th en h e n am ed n am es… h e p ut a lo ad o f
oth er p eo ple i n to A zk ab an i n h is p la ce… H e's n ot v ery p opula r i n t h ere , I c an t e ll
you. A nd s in ce h e g ot o ut, f ro m w hat I c an t e ll, h e's b een t e ach in g t h e D ark A rts
to e v ery stu den t w ho p asse s th ro ugh th at sc h ool o f h is . S o w atc h o ut fo r th e
Durm str a n g c h am pio n a s w ell.”
“O kay,” s a id H arry s lo w ly . “ B ut… a re y ou s a y in g K ark aro ff p ut m y n am e
in th e g oble t? B ecau se if h e d id , h e's a re ally g ood a cto r. H e se em ed fu rio us
ab out i t. H e w an te d t o s to p m e f ro m c o m petin g.”
“W e know he's a good acto r,” sa id S ir iu s, “b ecau se he co nvin ced th e
Min is tr y o f M ag ic to s e t h im f re e, d id n't h e? N ow , I 'v e b een k eep in g a n e y e o n
th e D aily P ro phet, H arry ..”
“y ou a n d t h e r e st o f t h e w orld ,” s a id H arry b itte rly .
“an d r e ad in g b etw een th e lin es o f th at S keete r w om an 's a rtic le la st m onth ,
Moody w as a tta ck ed th e n ig ht b efo re h e s ta rte d a t H ogw arts . Y es, I k now s h e
sa y s i t w as a n oth er f a ls e a la rm ,” S ir iu s s a id h astily , s e ein g H arry a b out t o s p eak ,
“b ut I d on't t h in k s o , s o m eh ow . I t h in k s o m eo ne t r ie d t o s to p h im f ro m g ettin g t o
Hogw arts . I t h in k s o m eo ne k new t h eir j o b w ould b e a l o t m ore d if f ic u lt w ith h im
aro und. A nd n o o ne's g oin g t o l o ok i n to i t t o o c lo se ly ; M ad -E ye's h eard i n tr u ders
a b it t o o o fte n . B ut t h at d oesn 't m ean h e c an 't s till s p ot t h e r e al t h in g. M oody w as
th e b est A uro r t h e M in is tr y e v er h ad .”
“S o… w hat a re y ou s a y in g?” s a id H arry s lo w ly . “ K ark aro ff 's tr y in g to k ill
me? B ut— why?”
Sir iu s h esita te d .
“I'v e b een n earin g s o m e v ery s tr a n ge th in gs,” h e s a id s lo w ly . “ T he D eath
Eate rs s e em t o b e a b it m ore a ctiv e t h an u su al l a te ly . T hey s h ow ed t h em se lv es a t
th e Q uid ditc h W orld C up, d id n't th ey ? S om eo ne s e t o ff th e D ark M ark … a n d
th en — did y ou h ear a b out t h at M in is tr y o f M ag ic w itc h w ho's g one m is sin g?”
“B erth a J o rk in s? ” s a id H arry .
“E xactly … sh e dis a p peare d in Alb an ia , an d th at's defin ite ly where
Vold em ort w as ru m ore d to b e la st… a n d s h e w ould h av e k now n th e T riw iz ard
Tourn am en t w as c o m in g u p, w ould n't s h e?”
“Y eah , b ut… it's n ot v ery lik ely s h e'd h av e w alk ed s tr a ig ht in to V old em ort,

is i t? ” s a id H arry .
“L is te n , I k new B erth a J o rk in s,” s a id S ir iu s g rim ly . “ S he w as a t H ogw arts
when I w as, a fe w y ears a b ove y our d ad a n d m e. A nd s h e w as a n id io t. V ery
nosy , b ut n o b ra in s, n one a t a ll. I t's n ot a g ood c o m bin atio n, H arry . I 'd s a y s h e'd
be v ery e asy t o l u re i n to a t r a p .”
“S o… so V old em ort co uld h av e fo und o ut ab out th e to urn am en t? ” sa id
Harry . “Is th at w hat you m ean ? Y ou th in k K ark aro ff m ig ht be here on his
ord ers ? ”
“I d on't k now ,” s a id S ir iu s s lo w ly , “ I ju st d on't k now … K ark aro ff d oesn 't
str ik e m e a s t h e t y pe w ho'd g o b ack t o V old em ort u nle ss h e k new V old em ort w as
pow erfu l e n ough t o p ro te ct h im . B ut w hoev er p ut y our n am e i n t h at g oble t d id i t
fo r a r e aso n, a n d I c an 't h elp th in kin g th e to urn am en t w ould b e a v ery g ood w ay
to a tta ck y ou a n d m ak e i t h ook l ik e a n a ccid en t.”
“L ooks hik e a re ally good pla n fro m w here I'm sta n din g,” sa id H arry
grin nin g b le ak y. “ T hey 'l l ju st h av e to sta n d b ack a n d le t th e d ra g ons d o th eir
stu ff .”
“R ig ht— th ese d ra g ons,” s a id S ir iu s, s p eak in g v ery q uic k ly n ow . “ T here 's a
way, H arry . D on't b e te m pte d to tr y a S tu nnin g S pell— dra g ons a re s tr o ng a n d
to o p ow erfu lly m ag ic al to b e k nock ed o ut b y a s in gle S tu nner, y ou n eed a b out
half a d ozen w iz ard s a t a t im e t o o verc o m e a d ra g on— ”
“Y eah , I k now , I j u st s a w ,” s a id H arry .
“B ut y ou c an d o it a lo ne,” s a id S ir iu s. “ T here is a w ay, a n d a s im ple s p ell's
all y ou n eed . J u st— ”
But H arry h eld u p a h an d to s ile n ce h im , h is h eart s u dden ly p oundin g a s
th ough it w ould b urs t. H e c o uld h ear f o ots te p s c o m in g d ow n th e s p ir a l s ta ir c ase
beh in d h im .
“G o!” h e h is se d a t S ir iu s. “ G o! T here 's s o m eo ne c o m in g!”
Harry s c ra m ble d to h is fe et, h id in g th e fir e — if s o m eo ne s a w S ir iu s's fa ce
with in t h e w alls o f H ogw arts , t h ey w ould r a is e a n a lm ig hty u pro ar— th e M in is tr y
would get dra g ged in — he, Harry , would be questio ned ab out Sir iu s's
where ab outs —
Harry h eard a tin y p op! in th e fir e b eh in d h im a n d k new S ir iu s h ad g one.
He w atc h ed t h e b otto m o f t h e s p ir a l s ta ir c ase . W ho h ad d ecid ed t o g o f o r a s tr o ll
at o ne o 'c lo ck in th e m orn in g, a n d s to pped S ir iu s fro m te llin g h im h ow to g et
past a d ra g on?
It w as R on. D re sse d in h is m aro on p ais le y p aja m as, R on sto pped d ead
fa cin g H arry a cro ss t h e r o om , a n d l o oked a ro und.
“W ho w ere y ou t a lk in g t o ?” h e s a id .
“W hat's t h at g ot t o d o w ith y ou?” H arry s n arle d . “ W hat a re y ou d oin g d ow n

here a t t h is t im e o f n ig ht? ”
“I ju st w ondere d w here y ou— ” R on b ro ke o ff , sh ru ggin g. “ N oth in g. I'm
goin g b ack t o b ed .”
“Ju st th ought y ou'd co m e n osin g aro und, d id y ou?” H arry sh oute d . H e
knew th at R on h ad n o id ea w hat h e'd w alk ed in o n, k new h e h ad n't d one it o n
purp ose , b ut h e d id n't c are — at t h is m om en t h e h ate d e v ery th in g a b out R on, r ig ht
dow n t o t h e s e v era l i n ch es o f b are a n kle s h ow in g b en eath h is p aja m a t r o use rs .
“S orry ab out th at,” sa id R on, h is fa ce re d den in g w ith an ger. “S hould 'v e
re aliz ed y ou d id n't w an t to b e d is tu rb ed . I'l l le t y ou g et o n w ith p ra ctic in g fo r
your n ex t i n te rv ie w i n p eace.”
Harry s e iz ed o ne o f th e P O TTER R EA LLY S T IN KS b ad ges o ff th e ta b le
an d c h uck ed it, a s h ard a s h e c o uld , a cro ss th e r o om . I t h it R on o n th e f o re h ead
an d b ounced o ff .
“T here y ou g o,” H arry s a id . “ S om eth in g fo r y ou to w ear o n T uesd ay. Y ou
mig ht e v en h av e a s c ar n ow , i f y on'r e l u ck y… T hat's w hat y ou w an t, i s n 't i t? ”
He s tr o de a cro ss th e ro om to w ard th e s ta ir s ; h e h alf e x pecte d R on to s to p
him , h e w ould e v en h av e lik ed R on to th ro w a p unch a t h im , b ut R on ju st s to od
th ere in h is to o-s m all p aja m as, a n d H arry , h av in g s to rm ed u psta ir s , la y a w ak e in
bed f u m in g f o r a l o ng t im e a fte rw ard a n d d id n't h ear h im c o m e u p t o b ed .

C H APT ER T W EN TY
T H E F IR ST T A SK
Harry g ot u p o n S unday m orn in g a n d d re sse d s o in atte n tiv ely th at it w as a
w hile b efo re h e r e aliz ed h e w as tr y in g to p ull h is h at o nto h is f o ot in ste ad o f h is
s o ck . W hen h e'd fin ally g ot a ll h is c lo th es o n th e rig ht p arts o f h is b ody, h e
h urrie d o ff to fin d H erm io ne, lo catin g h er a t th e G ry ff in dor ta b le in th e G re at
H all, w here sh e w as eatin g b re ak fa st w ith G in ny. F eelin g to o q ueasy to eat,
H arry w aite d u ntil H erm io ne h ad s w allo w ed h er la st s p oonfu l o f p orrid ge, th en
d ra g ged h er o ut o nto th e g ro unds. T here , h e to ld h er a ll a b out th e d ra g ons, a n d
a b out e v ery th in g S ir iu s h ad s a id , w hile th ey to ok a n oth er lo ng w alk a ro und th e
l a k e.
Ala rm ed a s s h e w as b y S ir iu s's w arn in gs a b out K ark aro ff , H erm io ne s till
t h ought t h at t h e d ra g ons w ere t h e m ore p re ssin g p ro ble m .
“L et's ju st tr y an d keep you aliv e until Tuesd ay ev en in g,” sh e sa id
d esp era te ly , “ an d t h en w e c an w orry a b out K ark aro ff .”
They w alk ed th re e tim es a ro und th e la k e, tr y in g a ll th e w ay to th in k o f a
s im ple s p ell th at w ould s u bdue a d ra g on. N oth in g w hats o ev er o ccu rre d to th em ,
s o th ey re tir e d to th e lib ra ry in ste ad . H ere , H arry p ulle d d ow n e v ery b ook h e
c o uld f in d o n d ra g ons, a n d b oth o f th em s e t to w ork s e arc h in g th ro ugh th e la rg e
p ile .
“T alo n-c lip pin g b y c h arm s… tr e atin g s c ale -ro t… ' T his is n o g ood, th is is
f o r n utte rs l ik e H ag rid w ho w an t t o k eep t h em h ealth y…
“D ra g ons a re e x tr e m ely d if f ic u lt to sla y, o w in g to th e a n cie n t m ag ic th at
i m bues th eir th ic k hid es, w hic h none but th e m ost pow erfu l sp ells can
p en etr a te … ' B ut S ir iu s s a id a s im ple o ne w ould d o i t…
“L et's tr y s o m e s im ple s p ellb ooks, th en ,” s a id H arry , th ro w in g a sid e M en
W ho L ove D ra g ons T oo M uch .
He r e tu rn ed t o t h e t a b le w ith a p ile o f s p ellb ooks, s e t t h em d ow n, a n d b eg an
t o f lic k t h ro ugh e ach i n t u rn , H erm io ne w his p erin g n onsto p a t h is e lb ow .
“W ell, th ere a re S w itc h in g S pells … b ut w hat's th e p oin t o f S w itc h in g it?
U nle ss y ou s w ap ped its fa n gs fo r w in e-g um s o r s o m eth in g th at w ould m ak e it
l e ss d an gero us… T he tr o uble is , lik e th at b ook s a id , n ot m uch is g oin g to g et
t h ro ugh a d ra g on's h id e… I'd sa y T ra n sfig ure it, b ut so m eth in g th at b ig , y ou
r e ally h av en 't g ot a h ope, I d oubt e v en P ro fe sso r M cG onag all… u nle ss y ou'r e
s u ppose d t o p ut t h e s p ell o n y ours e lf ? M ay be t o g iv e y ours e lf e x tr a p ow ers ? B ut
t h ey 'r e n ot s im ple s p ells , I m ean , w e h av en 't d one a n y o f th ose in c la ss, I o nly

know a b out t h em b ecau se I 'v e b een d oin g O . W . L . p ra ctic e p ap ers … ”
“H erm io ne,” H arry s a id , th ro ugh g ritte d te eth , “ w ill y ou s h ut u p fo r a b it,
ple ase ? I m t r y in g t o c o ncen tr a te .”
But a ll th at h ap pen ed , w hen H erm io ne fe ll sile n t, w as th at H arry 's b ra in
fille d w ith a so rt of bla n k buzzin g, w hic h did n't se em to allo w ro om fo r
co ncen tr a tio n. H e s ta re d h opele ssly d ow n th e in dex o f B asic H ex es f o r th e B usy
an d V ex ed . In sta n t s c alp in g… b ut d ra g ons h ad n o h air … p ep per b re ath … th at
would p ro bab ly in cre ase a d ra g on's fir e p ow er… h orn to ngue… ju st w hat h e
need ed , t o g iv e i t a n e x tr a w eap on…
“O h no, he's back ag ain , w hy can 't he re ad on his stu pid sh ip ?” sa id
Herm io ne ir rita b ly a s V ik to r K ru m s lo uch ed in , c ast a s u rly lo ok o ver a t th e p air
of th em , a n d s e ttle d h im se lf in a d is ta n t c o rn er w ith a p ile o f b ooks. “ C om e o n,
Harry , w e'l l g o b ack to th e c o m mon r o om … h is f a n c lu b'l l b e h ere in a m om en t,
tw itte rin g a w ay … ”
And s u re e n ough, a s th ey le ft th e lib ra ry , a g an g o f g ir ls tip to ed p ast th em ,
one o f t h em w earin g a B ulg aria s c arf t ie d a ro und h er w ais t.
Harry b are ly sle p t th at n ig ht. W hen h e aw oke o n M onday m orn in g, h e
se rio usly c o nsid ere d fo r th e fir s t tim e e v er ju st ru nnin g a w ay fro m H ogw arts .
But a s h e l o oked a ro und t h e G re at H all a t b re ak fa st t im e, a n d t h ought a b out w hat
le av in g th e c astle w ould m ean , h e k new h e c o uld n't d o it. I t w as th e o nly p la ce
he h ad e v er b een h ap py… w ell, h e s u ppose d h e m ust h av e b een h ap py w ith h is
pare n ts t o o, b ut h e c o uld n't r e m em ber t h at.
Som eh ow , th e k now le d ge th at h e w ould r a th er b e h ere a n d f a cin g a d ra g on
th an b ack o n P riv et D riv e w ith D udle y w as g ood to k now ; it m ad e h im fe el
slig htly c alm er. H e f in is h ed h is b aco n w ith d if f ic u lty ( h is th ro at w asn 't w ork in g
to o w ell) , a n d a s h e a n d H erm io ne g ot u p, h e s a w C ed ric D ig gory le av in g th e
Huff le p uff t a b le .
Ced ric s till d id n't k now a b out th e d ra g ons… th e o nly c h am pio n w ho d id n't ,
if H arry w as r ig ht in th in kin g th at M ax im e a n d K ark aro ff w ould h av e to ld F le u r
an d K ru m …
“H erm io ne, I'l l se e y ou in th e g re en house s,” H arry sa id , co m in g to h is
decis io n a s h e w atc h ed C ed ric l e av in g t h e H all. “ G o o n, I 'l l c atc h y ou u p.”
“H arry , y ou'l l b e l a te , t h e b ell's a b out t o r in g— ”
“I'l l c atc h y ou u p, o kay ?”
By t h e t im e H arry r e ach ed t h e b otto m o f t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase , C ed ric w as a t
th e to p. H e w as w ith a lo ad o f s ix th -y ear frie n ds. H arry d id n't w an t to ta lk to
Ced ric in fro nt o f th em ; th ey w ere a m ong th ose w ho h ad b een q uotin g R ita
Skeete r's a rtic le a t h im e v ery tim e h e w en t n ear th em . H e fo llo w ed C ed ric a t a
dis ta n ce a n d sa w th at h e w as h ead in g to w ard th e C harm s c o rrid or. T his g av e

Harry a n i d ea. P au sin g a t a d is ta n ce f ro m t h em , h e p ulle d o ut h is w an d, a n d t o ok
care fu l a im .
“D if f in do!”
Ced ric 's b ag s p lit. P arc h m en t, q uills , a n d b ooks s p ille d o ut o f it o nto th e
flo or. S ev era l b ottle s o f i n k s m ash ed .
“D on't b oth er,” s a id C ed ric i n a n e x asp era te d v oic e a s h is f rie n ds b en t d ow n
to h elp h im . “ T ell F litw ic k I 'm c o m in g, g o o n…
This w as e x actly w hat H arry h ad b een h opin g f o r. H e s lip ped h is w an d b ack
in to h is r o bes, w aite d u ntil C ed ric 's f rie n ds h ad d is a p peare d i n to t h eir c la ssro om ,
an d h urrie d u p th e c o rrid or, w hic h w as n ow e m pty o f e v ery one b ut h im se lf a n d
Ced ric .
“H i,” sa id Ced ric , pic k in g up a co py of A Guid e to Advan ced
Tra n sfig ura tio n th at w as n ow sp la tte re d w ith in k. “ M y b ag ju st sp lit… b ra n d-
new a n d a ll… ”
“C ed ric ,” s a id H arry , “ th e f ir s t t a sk i s d ra g ons.”
“W hat? ” s a id C ed ric , l o okin g u p.
“D ra g ons,” s a id H arry , s p eak in g q uic k ly , in c ase P ro fe sso r F litw ic k c am e
out to s e e w here C ed ric h ad g ot to . “ T hey 'v e g ot fo ur, o ne fo r e ach o f u s, a n d
we'v e g ot t o g et p ast t h em .”
Ced ric s ta re d a t h im . H arry s a w s o m e o f th e p an ic h e'd b een fe elin g s in ce
Satu rd ay n ig ht f lic k erin g i n C ed ric 's g ra y e y es.
“A re y ou s u re ?” C ed ric s a id i n a h ush ed v oic e.
“D ead s u re ,” s a id H arry . “ I'v e s e en t h em .”
“B ut h ow d id y ou f in d o ut? W e'r e n ot s u ppose d t o k now … ”
“N ev er m in d,” s a id H arry q uic k ly — he k new H ag rid w ould b e in tr o uble if
he to ld th e tr u th . “ B ut I'm n ot th e o nly o ne w ho k now s. F le u r a n d K ru m w ill
know b y n ow — Max im e a n d K ark aro ff b oth s a w t h e d ra g ons t o o.”
Ced ric s tr a ig hte n ed u p, h is a rm s f u ll o f in ky q uills , p arc h m en t, a n d b ooks,
his rip ped b ag d an glin g o ff o ne s h ould er. H e s ta re d a t H arry , a n d th ere w as a
puzzle d , a lm ost s u sp ic io us l o ok i n h is e y es.
“W hy a re y ou t e llin g m e?” h e a sk ed .
Harry lo oked a t h im in d is b elie f. H e w as s u re C ed ric w ould n't h av e a sk ed
th at i f h e h ad s e en t h e d ra g ons h im se lf . H arry w ould n't h av e l e t h is w ors t e n em y
fa ce t h ose m onste rs u npre p are d — well, p erh ap s M alf o y o r S nap e…
“It's j u st… f a ir , i s n 't i t? ” h e s a id t o C ed ric . “ W e a ll k now n ow … w e'r e o n a n
ev en f o otin g, a re n 't w e?”
Ced ric w as s till h ookin g a t h im in a s lig htly s u sp ic io us w ay w hen H arry
heard a f a m ilia r c lu nkin g n ois e b eh in d h im . H e t u rn ed a ro und a n d s a w M ad -E ye
Moody e m erg in g f ro m a n earb y c la ssro om .

“C om e w ith m e, P otte r,” h e g ro w le d . “ D ig gory , o ff y ou g o.”
Harry s ta re d a p pre h en siv ely a t M oody. H ad h e o verh eard t h em ?
“E r— Pro fe sso r, I 'm s u ppose d t o b e i n H erb olo gy— ”
“N ev er m in d t h at, P otte r. I n m y o ff ic e, p le ase …
Harry fo llo w ed h im , w onderin g w hat w as g oin g to h ap pen to h im n ow .
What if M oody w an te d to k now h ow h e'd f o und o ut a b out th e d ra g ons? W ould
Moody g o to D um ble d ore a n d te ll o n H ag rid , o r ju st tu rn H arry in to a fe rre t?
Well, it m ig ht b e e asie r to g et p ast a d ra g on if h e w ere a fe rre t, H arry th ought
dully , h e'd b e s m alle r, m uch l e ss e asy t o s e e f ro m a h eig ht o f f if ty f e et..
He fo llo w ed M oody in to h is o ff ic e. M oody c lo se d th e d oor b eh in d th em
an d tu rn ed to lo ok at H arry , h is m ag ic al ey e fix ed u pon h im as w ell as th e
norm al o ne.
“T hat w as a v ery d ecen t t h in g y ou j u st d id , P otte r,” M oody s a id q uie tly .
Harry d id n't k now w hat to s a y ; th is w asn 't th e r e actio n h e h ad e x pecte d a t
all.
“S it d ow n,” s a id M oody, a n d H arry s a t, l o okin g a ro und.
He h ad v is ite d th is o ff ic e u nder tw o o f its p re v io us o ccu pan ts . I n P ro fe sso r
Lock hart's d ay, th e w alls h ad b een p la ste re d w ith b eam in g, w in kin g p ic tu re s o f
Pro fe sso r L ock hart h im se lf . W hen L upin h ad l iv ed h ere , y ou w ere m ore l ik ely t o
co m e a cro ss a s p ecim en o f s o m e f a sc in atin g n ew D ark c re atu re h e h ad p ro cu re d
fo r th em to stu dy in c la ss. N ow , h ow ev er, th e o ff ic e w as fu ll o f a n um ber o f
ex cep tio nally o dd o bje cts t h at H arry s u ppose d M oody h ad u se d i n t h e d ay s w hen
he h ad b een a n A uro r.
On h is d esk s to od w hat lo oked h ik e a la rg e, c ra ck ed , g la ss s p in nin g to p;
Harry re co gniz ed it a t o nce a s a S neak osc o pe, b ecau se h e o w ned o ne h im se lf ,
th ough i t w as m uch s m alle r t h an M oody's . I n t h e c o rn er o n a s m all t a b le s to od a n
obje ct th at lo oked s o m eth in g lik e a n e x tr a -s q uig gly , g old en te le v is io n a eria l. It
was h um min g s lig htly . W hat a p peare d t o b e a m ir ro r h ung o pposite H arry o n t h e
wall, b ut it w as n ot re fle ctin g th e ro om . S had ow y fig ure s w ere m ovin g a ro und
in sid e i t, n one o f t h em c le arly i n f o cu s.
“L ik e m y D ark D ete cto rs , d o y ou?” s a id M oody, w ho w as w atc h in g H arry
clo se ly .
“W hat's t h at? ” H arry a sk ed , p oin tin g a t t h e s q uig gly g old en a eria l.
“S ecre cy S en so r. V ib ra te s w hen it d ete cts c o ncealm en t a n d lie s… n o u se
here , o f c o urs e , to o m uch in te rf e re n ce— stu den ts in e v ery d ir e ctio n ly in g a b out
why th ey h av en 't d one th eir h om ew ork B een h um min g e v er s in ce I g ot h ere . I
had to d is a b le m y S neak osc o pe b ecau se it w ould n't sto p w his tlin g. It's e x tr a -
se n sitiv e, p ic k s u p s tu ff a b out a m ile a ro und. O f c o urs e , it c o uld b e p ic k in g u p
more t h an k id s tu ff ,” h e a d ded i n a g ro w l.

“A nd w hat's t h e m ir ro r f o r? ”
“O h th at's m y F oe-G la ss. S ee th em o ut th ere , sk ulk in g aro und? I'm n ot
re ally in tr o uble u ntil I se e th e w hite s o f th eir e y es. T hat's w hen I o pen m y
tr u nk.”
He le t o ut a sh ort, h ars h la u gh, a n d p oin te d to th e la rg e tr u nk u nder th e
win dow . I t h ad s e v en k ey hole s i n a r o w . H arry w ondere d w hat w as i n t h ere , u ntil
Moody's n ex t q uestio n b ro ught h im s h arp ly b ack t o e arth .
“S o… f o und o ut a b out t h e d ra g ons, h av e y ou?”
Harry h esita te d . H e'd b een a fra id o f th is — but h e h ad n't to ld C ed ric , a n d h e
certa in ly w asn 't g oin g t o t e ll M oody, t h at H ag rid h ad b ro ken t h e r u le s.
“It's a ll r ig ht,” s a id M oody, s ittin g d ow n a n d s tr e tc h in g o ut h is w ooden le g
with a g ro an . “ C heatin g's a tr a d itio nal p art o f th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t a n d
alw ay s h as b een .”
“I d id n't c h eat,” s a id H arry s h arp ly . “ It w as— a s o rt o f a ccid en t th at I f o und
out.”
Moody grin ned . “I wasn 't accu sin g you, la d die . I'v e been te llin g
Dum ble d ore f ro m t h e s ta rt, h e c an b e a s h ig h-m in ded a s h e l ik es, b ut y ou c an b et
old K ark aro ff an d M ax im e w on't be. They 'l l hav e to ld th eir ch am pio ns
ev ery th in g th ey c an . T hey w an t to w in . T hey w an t to b eat D um ble d ore . T hey 'd
lik e t o p ro ve h e's o nly h um an .”
Moody g av e a n oth er h ars h la u gh, a n d h is m ag ic al e y e s w iv ele d a ro und s o
fa st i t m ad e H arry f e el q ueasy t o w atc h i t.
“S o… g ot a n y id eas h ow y ou'r e g oin g to g et p ast y our d ra g on y et? ” s a id
Moody.
“N o,” s a id H arry .
“W ell, I'm not goin g to te ll you,” sa id M oody gru ff ly . “I don't sh ow
fa v oritis m , m e. I'm ju st g oin g to g iv e y ou s o m e g ood, g en era l a d vic e. A nd th e
fir s t b it i s — pla y t o y our s tr e n gth s.”
“I h av en 't g ot a n y,” s a id H arry , b efo re h e c o uld s to p h im se lf . “ E xcu se m e,”
gro w le d M oody, “ y ou'v e g ot s tr e n gth s i f I s a y y ou'v e g ot t h em . T hin k n ow . W hat
are y ou b est a t? ”
Harry tr ie d to c o ncen tr a te . W hat w as h e b est a t? W ell, th at w as e asy , r e ally

“Q uid ditc h ,” h e s a id d ully , “ an d a f a t l o t o f h elp — ”
“T hat's r ig ht,” s a id M oody, s ta rin g a t h im v ery h ard , h is m ag ic al e y e b are ly
movin g a t a ll. “ Y ou'r e a d am n g ood f lie r f ro m w hat I 'v e h eard .”
“Y eah , b ut… ” H arry s ta re d a t h im . “ I'm n ot a llo w ed a b ro om , I 'v e o nly g ot
my w an d… ”
“M y s e co nd p ie ce o f g en era l a d vic e,” s a id M oody lo udly , in te rru ptin g h im ,

“is t o u se a n ic e, s im ple s p ell t h at w ill e n ab le y ou t o g et w hat y ou n eed .”
Harry l o oked a t h im b la n kly . W hat d id h e n eed ?
“C om e o n, b oy… ” w his p ere d M oody. “ P ut th em to geth er… it's n ot th at
dif f ic u lt… ”
And it c lic k ed . H e w as b est a t f ly in g. H e n eed ed to p ass th e d ra g on in th e
air. F or t h at, h e n eed ed h is F ir e b olt. A nd f o r h is F ir e -b olt, h e n eed ed —
“H erm io ne,” H arry w his p ere d , w hen h e h ad sp ed in to g re en house th re e
min ute s la te r, u tte rin g a h urrie d a p olo gy to P ro fe sso r S pro ut a s h e p asse d h er.
“H erm io ne— I n eed y ou t o h elp m e.”
“W hat d 'y ou th in k I 'v e b een tr y in g to d o, H arry ?” s h e w his p ere d b ack , h er
ey es ro und w ith a n xie ty o ver th e to p o f th e q uiv erin g F lu tte rb y B ush s h e w as
pru nin g.
“H erm io ne, I n eed to le arn h ow to d o a S um monin g C harm p ro perly b y
to m orro w a fte rn oon.”
And so th ey pra ctic ed . T hey did n't hav e lu nch , but head ed fo r a fre e
cla ssro om , w here H arry tr ie d w ith all h is m ig ht to m ak e v ario us o bje cts fly
acro ss t h e r o om t o w ard h im . H e w as s till h av in g p ro ble m s. T he b ooks a n d q uills
kep t l o sin g h eart h alf w ay a cro ss t h e r o om a n d d ro ppin g h ik e s to nes t o t h e f lo or.
“C oncen tr a te , H arry , c o ncen tr a te … ”
“W hat d 'y ou th in k I'm tr y in g to d o?” sa id H arry an grily . “A g re at b ig
dra g on k eep s p oppin g u p i n m y h ead f o r s o m e r e aso n… O kay, t r y a g ain … ”
He w an te d to sk ip D iv in atio n to k eep p ra ctic in g, b ut H erm io ne re fu se d
poin t- b la n k to s k iv e o ff A rith m an cy, a n d th ere w as n o p oin t in s ta y in g w ith out
her. H e th ere fo re h ad to e n dure o ver a n h our o f P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, w ho s p en t
half th e le sso n te llin g e v ery one th at th e p ositio n o f M ars w ith r e la tio n to S atu rn
at th at m om en t m ean t th at p eo ple b orn in J u ly w ere in g re at d an ger o f s u dden ,
vio le n t d eath s.
“W ell, th at's g ood,” s a id H arry lo udly , h is te m per g ettin g th e b ette r o f h im ,
“ju st a s l o ng a s i t's n ot d ra w n-o ut. I d on't w an t t o s u ff e r.”
Ron lo oked fo r a m om en t a s th ough h e w as g oin g to la u gh; h e c erta in ly
cau ght H arry 's e y e fo r th e fir s t tim e in d ay s, b ut H arry w as still fe elin g to o
re se n tf u l to w ard R on to c are . H e sp en t th e re st o f th e le sso n tr y in g to a ttr a ct
sm all o bje cts to w ard h im u nder th e ta b le w ith h is w an d. H e m an ag ed to m ak e a
fly zo om str a ig ht in to h is h an d, th ough h e w asn 't en tir e ly su re th at w as h is
pro w ess a t S um monin g C harm s— perh ap s t h e f ly w as j u st s tu pid .
He fo rc ed d ow n s o m e d in ner a fte r D iv in atio n, th en re tu rn ed to th e e m pty
cla ssro om w ith H erm io ne, u sin g th e In vis ib ility C lo ak to av oid th e te ach ers .
They k ep t p ra ctic in g u ntil p ast m id nig ht. T hey w ould h av e sta y ed lo nger, b ut
Peev es tu rn ed u p a n d, p re te n din g to th in k th at H arry w an te d th in gs th ro w n a t

him , s ta rte d c h uck in g c h air s a cro ss t h e r o om . H arry a n d H erm io ne l e ft i n a h urry
befo re th e n ois e a ttr a cte d F ilc h , a n d w en t b ack to th e G ry ff in dor c o m mon r o om ,
whic h w as n ow m erc if u lly e m pty .
At tw o o 'c lo ck in th e m orn in g, H arry s to od n ear th e fir e p la ce, s u rro unded
by heap s of obje cts : books, quills , se v era l uptu rn ed ch air s , an old se t of
Gobsto nes, a n d N ev ille 's to ad , T re v or. O nly in th e la st h our h ad H arry r e ally g ot
th e h an g o f t h e S um monin g C harm .
“T hat's b ette r, H arry , th at's lo ad s b ette r,” H erm io ne s a id , lo okin g e x hau ste d
but v ery p le ase d .
“W ell, n ow w e k now w hat to d o n ex t tim e I c an 't m an ag e a s p ell,” H arry
sa id , th ro w in g a ru ne dic tio nary back to H erm io ne, so he co uld tr y ag ain ,
“th re ate n m e w ith a d ra g on. R ig ht… ” H e ra is e d h is w an d o nce m ore . “ A ccio
Dic tio nary !”
The h eav y b ook s o are d o ut o f H erm io ne's h an d, f le w a cro ss th e r o om , a n d
Harry c au ght i t.
“H arry , I r e ally t h in k y ou'v e g ot i t! ” s a id H erm io ne d elig hte d ly .
“Ju st a s l o ng a s i t w ork s t o m orro w ,” H arry s a id . “ T he F ir e b olt's g oin g t o b e
much fa rth er a w ay th an th e s tu ff in h ere , it's g oin g to b e in th e c astle , a n d I'm
goin g t o b e o ut t h ere o n t h e g ro unds… ”
“T hat doesn 't m atte r,” sa id H erm io ne fir m ly .” Ju st as lo ng as you'r e
co ncen tr a tin g re ally , re ally h ard o n it, it'l l c o m e. H arry , w e'd b ette r g et so m e
sle ep … y ou'r e g oin g t o n eed i t.”
Harry h ad b een fo cu sin g s o h ard o n le arn in g th e S um monin g C harm th at
ev en in g th at s o m e o f h is b lin d p an ic h ad h eft h im . It re tu rn ed in fu ll m easu re ,
how ev er, o n th e fo llo w in g m orn in g. T he a tm osp here in th e s c h ool w as o ne o f
gre at te n sio n a n d e x cite m en t. L esso ns w ere to sto p a t m id day, g iv in g a ll th e
stu den ts tim e to g et d ow n to th e d ra g ons' e n clo su re — th ough o f c o urs e , th ey
did n't y et k now w hat t h ey w ould f in d t h ere .
Harry fe lt o ddly se p ara te fro m e v ery one a ro und h im , w heth er th ey w ere
wis h in g h im g ood lu ck o r h is sin g “ W e'l l h av e a b ox o f tis su es r e ad y, P otte r” a s
he p asse d . I t w as a s ta te o f n erv ousn ess s o a d van ced th at h e w ondere d w heth er
he m ig htn 't ju st lo se h is h ead w hen th ey tr ie d to le ad h im o ut to h is d ra g on, a n d
sta rt tr y in g to c u rs e e v ery one in s ig ht. T im e w as b eh av in g in a m ore p ecu lia r
fa sh io n t h an e v er, r u sh in g p ast i n g re at d ollo ps, s o t h at o ne m om en t h e s e em ed t o
be s ittin g d ow n in h is f ir s t le sso n, H is to ry o f M ag ic , a n d th e n ex t, w alk in g in to
lu nch … an d th en (w here h ad th e m orn in g g one? th e la st o f th e d ra g on-fre e
hours ? ), P ro fe sso r M cG onag all w as h urry in g o ver to h im in th e G re at H all. L ots
of p eo ple w ere w atc h in g.
“P otte r, th e c h am pio ns h av e to c o m e d ow n o nto th e g ro unds n ow … Y ou

hav e t o g et r e ad y f o r y our f ir s t t a sk .”
“O kay,” s a id H arry , s ta n din g u p, h is f o rk f a llin g o nto h is p la te w ith a c la tte r.
“G ood l u ck , H arry ,” H erm io ne w his p ere d . “ Y ou'l l b e f in e!”
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry i n a v oic e t h at w as m ost u nlik e h is o w n.
He h eft th e G re at H all w ith P ro fe sso r M cG onag all. S he d id n't s e em h ers e lf
eith er; in fa ct, s h e lo oked n early a s a n xio us a s H erm io ne. A s s h e w alk ed h im
dow n t h e s to ne s te p s a n d o ut i n to t h e c o ld N ovem ber a fte rn oon, s h e p ut h er h an d
on h is s h ould er.
“N ow , d on't p an ic ,” s h e s a id , “ ju st k eep a c o ol h ead … W e'v e g ot w iz ard s
sta n din g b y t o c o ntr o l t h e s itu atio n i f i t g ets o ut o f h an d… T he m ain t h in g i s j u st
to d o y our b est, a n d n obody w ill th in k a n y th e w ors e o f y ou… A re y ou a ll
rig ht? ”
“Y es,” H arry h eard h im se lf s a y. “ Y es, I 'm f in e.”
She w as le ad in g h im to w ard th e p la ce w here th e d ra g ons w ere , a ro und th e
ed ge o f th e fo re st, b ut w hen th ey a p pro ach ed th e c lu m p o f tr e es b eh in d w hic h
th e e n clo su re w ould b e c le arly v is ib le , H arry s a w t h at a t e n t h ad b een e re cte d , i ts
en tr a n ce f a cin g t h em , s c re en in g t h e d ra g ons f ro m v ie w .
“Y ou'r e to go in here with th e oth er ch am pio ns,” sa id Pro fe sso r
McG onag all, in a r a th er s h ak y s o rt o f v oic e, “ an d w ait f o r y our tu rn , P otte r. M r.
Bag m an i s i n t h ere … h e'l l b e t e llin g y ou t h e— th e p ro ced ure … G ood l u ck .”
“T han ks,” s a id H arry , i n a f la t, d is ta n t v oic e. S he l e ft h im a t t h e e n tr a n ce o f
th e t e n t. H arry w en t i n sid e.
Fle u r D ela co ur w as s ittin g in a c o rn er o n a h ow w ooden s to ol. S he d id n't
lo ok n early a s c o m pose d a s u su al, b ut ra th er p ale a n d c la m my. V ik to r K ru m
lo oked e v en s u rlie r th an u su al, w hic h H arry s u ppose d w as h is w ay o f s h ow in g
nerv es. C ed ric w as p acin g u p a n d d ow n. W hen H arry e n te re d , C ed ric g av e h im a
sm all s m ile , w hic h H arry r e tu rn ed , f e elin g t h e m usc le s i n h is f a ce w ork in g r a th er
hard , a s t h ough t h ey h ad f o rg otte n h ow t o d o i t.
“H arry ! G ood-o !” s a id B ag m an h ap pily , lo okin g a ro und a t h im . “ C om e in ,
co m e i n , m ak e y ours e lf a t h om e!”
Bag m an l o oked s o m eh ow l ik e a s lig htly o verb lo w n c arto on f ig ure , s ta n din g
am id a ll t h e p ale -fa ced c h am pio ns. H e w as w earin g h is o ld W asp r o bes a g ain .
“W ell, n ow w e'r e all h ere — tim e to fill y ou in !” sa id B ag m an b rig htly .
“W hen th e a u die n ce h as a sse m ble d , I'm g oin g to b e o ff e rin g e ach o f y ou th is
bag ”— he h eld u p a s m all s a ck o f p urp le s ilk a n d s h ook i t a t t h em — ”fro m w hic h
you w ill e ach s e le ct a s m all m odel o f th e th in g y ou a re a b out to f a ce! T here a re
dif f e re n t— er— varie tie s, y ou s e e. A nd I h av e to te ll y ou s o m eth in g e ls e to o…
ah , y es… y our t a sk i s t o c o lle ct t h e g old en e g g!”
Harry g la n ced a ro und. C ed ric h ad n odded o nce, to s h ow th at h e u nders to od

Bag m an 's w ord s, an d th en sta rte d pacin g aro und th e te n t ag ain ; he lo oked
slig htly g re en . F le u r D ela co ur an d K ru m h ad n't re acte d at all. P erh ap s th ey
th ought th ey m ig ht b e s ic k if th ey o pen ed th eir m outh s; th at w as c erta in ly h ow
Harry f e lt. B ut t h ey, a t l e ast, h ad v olu nte ere d f o r t h is ..
And in n o tim e a t a ll, h undre d s u pon h undre d s o f p air s o f fe et c o uld b e
heard p assin g th e te n t, th eir o w ners ta lk in g e x cite d ly , la u ghin g, jo kin g… H arry
fe lt a s s e p ara te f ro m t h e c ro w d a s t h ough t h ey w ere a d if f e re n t s p ecie s. A nd t h en
—it s e em ed lik e a b out a s e co nd la te r to H arry — Bag m an w as o pen in g th e n eck
of t h e p urp le s ilk s a ck .
“L ad ie s f ir s t,” h e s a id , o ff e rin g i t t o F le u r D ela co ur.
She p ut a s h ak in g h an d i n sid e t h e b ag a n d d re w o ut a t in y, p erfe ct m odel o f
a d ra g on— a W els h G re en . It h ad th e n um ber tw o a ro und its n eck A nd H arry
knew , b y th e f a ct th at F le u r s h ow ed n o s ig n o f s u rp ris e , b ut r a th er a d ete rm in ed
re sig natio n, th at h e h ad b een rig ht: M ad am e M ax im e h ad to ld h er w hat w as
co m in g.
The s a m e h eld tr u e f o r K ru m . H e p ulle d o ut th e s c arle t C hin ese F ir e b all. I t
had a n um ber t h re e a ro und i ts n eck . H e d id n't e v en b lin k, j u st s a t b ack d ow n a n d
sta re d a t t h e g ro und.
Ced ric p ut h is h an d in to th e b ag , a n d o ut c am e th e b lu eis h -g ra y S w ed is h
Short- S nout, t h e n um ber o ne t ie d a ro und i ts n eck . K now in g w hat w as l e ft, H arry
put h is h an d in to th e silk b ag a n d p ulle d o ut th e H ungaria n H orn ta il, a n d th e
num ber fo ur. It str e tc h ed its w in gs as he lo oked dow n at it, an d bare d its
min usc u le f a n gs.
“W ell, th ere y ou a re !” s a id B ag m an . “ Y ou h av e e ach p ulle d o ut th e d ra g on
you w ill f a ce, a n d th e n um bers r e fe r to th e o rd er in w hic h y ou a re to ta k e o n th e
dra g ons, d o y ou s e e? N ow , I 'm g oin g to h av e to le av e y ou in a m om en t, b ecau se
I'm c o m men ta tin g. M r. D ig gory , y ou'r e f ir s t, ju st g o o ut in to th e e n clo su re w hen
you h ear a w his tle , all rig ht? N ow … H arry … co uld I h av e a q uic k w ord ?
Outs id e?”
“E r… y es,” s a id H arry b la n kly , a n d h e g ot u p a n d w en t o ut o f th e te n t w ith
Bag m an , w ho w alk ed h im a s h ort d is ta n ce a w ay, in to th e tr e es, a n d th en tu rn ed
to h im w ith a f a th erly e x pre ssio n o n h is f a ce.
“F eelin g a ll r ig ht, H arry ? A nyth in g I c an g et y ou?”
“W hat? ” s a id H arry . “ I— no, n oth in g.”
“G ot a p la n ?” s a id B ag m an , lo w erin g h is v oic e c o nsp ir a to ria lly . “ B ecau se I
don't m in d sh arin g a fe w p oin te rs , if y ou'd lik e th em , y ou k now . I m ean ,”
Bag m an c o ntin ued , lo w erin g h is v oic e s till fu rth er, “ y ou'r e th e u nderd og h ere ,
Harry … A nyth in g I c an d o t o h elp … ”
“N o,” s a id H arry s o q uic k ly h e k new h e h ad s o unded r u de, “ n o— I— I k now

what I 'm g oin g t o d o, t h an ks.”
“N obody w ould k now , H arry ,” s a id B ag m an , w in kin g a t h im .
“N o, I 'm f in e,” s a id H arry , w onderin g w hy h e k ep t te llin g p eo ple th is , a n d
wonderin g w heth er h e h ad e v er b een l e ss f in e. “ I'v e g ot a p la n w ork ed o ut, I — ”
A w his tle h ad b lo w n s o m ew here .
“G ood l o rd , I 'v e g ot t o r u n!” s a id B ag m an i n a la rm , a n d h e h urrie d o ff .
Harry w alk ed b ack to th e te n t a n d sa w C ed ric e m erg in g fro m it, g re en er
th an e v er. H arry tr ie d to w is h h im lu ck a s h e w alk ed p ast, b ut a ll th at c am e o ut
of h is m outh w as a s o rt o f h oars e g ru nt.
Harry w en t b ack in sid e to F le u r a n d K ru m . S eco nds h ate r, th ey h eard th e
ro ar o f th e c ro w d, w hic h m ean t C ed ric h ad e n te re d th e e n clo su re a n d w as n ow
fa ce-to -fa ce w ith t h e l iv in g c o unte rp art o f h is m odel.
It w as w ors e th an H arry co uld ev er hav e im ag in ed , sittin g th ere an d
lis te n in g. T he cro w d sc re am ed … y elle d … g asp ed lik e a sin gle m an y-h ead ed
en tity , a s C ed ric d id w hate v er h e w as d oin g t o g et p ast t h e S w ed is h S hort- S nout.
Kru m w as s till s ta rin g a t th e g ro und. F le u r h ad n ow ta k en to re tr a cin g C ed ric 's
ste p s, a ro und a n d a ro und th e te n t. A nd B ag m an 's c o m men ta ry m ad e e v ery th in g
much , m uch w ors e … H orrib le p ic tu re s fo rm ed in H arry 's m in d as h e h eard :
“O ooh, narro w m is s th ere , very narro w ”… “H e's ta k in g ris k s, th is one!” …
“C le v er m ove— pity i t d id n't w ork !”
And th en , a fte r a b out fif te en m in ute s, H arry h eard th e d eafe n in g ro ar th at
co uld m ean o nly o ne th in g: C ed ric h ad g otte n p ast h is d ra g on a n d c ap tu re d th e
gold en e g g.
“V ery g ood in deed !” B ag m an w as s h outin g. “ A nd n ow th e m ark s f ro m th e
ju dges!”
But h e d id n't s h out o ut th e m ark s; H arry s u ppose d th e ju dges w ere h old in g
th em u p a n d s h ow in g t h em t o t h e c ro w d.
“O ne d ow n, th re e to g o!” B ag m an y elle d a s th e w his tle b le w a g ain . “ M is s
Dela co ur, i f y ou p le ase !”
Fle u r w as tr e m blin g f ro m h ead to f o ot; H arry f e lt m ore w arm ly to w ard h er
th an h e h ad d one s o f a r a s s h e h eft t h e t e n t w ith h er h ead h eld h ig h a n d h er h an d
clu tc h in g h er w an d. H e a n d K ru m w ere le ft a lo ne, a t o pposite s id es o f th e te n t,
av oid in g e ach o th er's g aze.
The sa m e p ro cess sta rte d a g ain … " O h I'm n ot su re th at w as w is e !” th ey
co uld h ear B ag m an s h outin g g le efu lly . “ O h… n early ! C are fu l n ow … g ood lo rd ,
I t h ought s h e'd h ad i t t h en !”
Ten m in ute s la te r, H arry h eard th e c ro w d e ru pt in to a p pla u se o nce m ore …
Fle u r m ust h av e b een s u ccessfu l to o. A p au se , w hile F le u r's m ark s w ere b ein g
sh ow n… m ore c la p pin g… t h en , f o r t h e t h ir d t im e, t h e w his tle .

“A nd here co m es M r. K ru m !” crie d B ag m an , an d K ru m slo uch ed out,
le av in g H arry q uite a lo ne.
He f e lt m uch m ore a w are o f h is b ody th an u su al; v ery a w are o f t h e w ay h is
heart w as p um pin g f a st, a n d h is f in gers t in glin g w ith f e ar… y et a t t h e s a m e t im e,
he s e em ed to b e o uts id e h im se lf , s e ein g th e w alls o f th e te n t, a n d h earin g th e
cro w d, a s t h ough f ro m f a r a w ay.
“V ery d arin g!” B ag m an w as y ellin g, a n d H arry h eard th e C hin ese F ir e b all
em it a horrib le , ro arin g sh rie k , w hile th e cro w d dre w its co lle ctiv e bre ath .
“T hat's s o m e n erv e h e's s h ow in g— an d— yes, h e's g ot t h e e g g!”
Appla u se s h atte re d t h e w in te ry a ir l ik e b re ak in g g la ss; K ru m h ad f in is h ed —
it w ould b e H arry 's t u rn a n y m om en t.
He sto od up, notic in g dim ly th at his le g s se em ed to be m ad e of
mars h m allo w . H e w aite d . A nd th en h e h eard th e w his tle b lo w . H e w alk ed o ut
th ro ugh th e e n tr a n ce o f th e te n t, th e p an ic ris in g in to a c re sc en do in sid e h im .
And n ow h e w as w alk in g p ast t h e t r e es, t h ro ugh a g ap i n t h e e n clo su re f e n ce.
He s a w e v ery th in g in fro nt o f h im a s th ough it w as a v ery h ig hly c o lo re d
dre am . T here w ere h undre d s a n d h undre d s o f fa ces s ta rin g d ow n a t h im fro m
sta n ds th at h ad b een m ag ic k ed th ere s in ce h e'd la st s to od o n th is s p ot. A nd th ere
was th e H orn ta il, a t th e o th er e n d o f th e e n clo su re , c ro uch ed lo w o ver h er c lu tc h
of e g gs, h er w in gs h alf -fu rle d , h er e v il, y ello w e y es u pon h im , a m onstr o us,
sc aly , b la ck liz ard , th ra sh in g h er s p ik ed ta il, h eav in g y ard -lo ng g ouge m ark s in
th e h ard g ro und. T he cro w d w as m ak in g a g re at d eal o f n ois e , b ut w heth er
frie n dly o r n ot, H arry d id n't k now o r c are . I t w as t im e t o d o w hat h e h ad t o d o…
to fo cu s h is m in d, en tir e ly an d ab so lu te ly , u pon th e th in g th at w as h is o nly
ch an ce.
He r a is e d h is w an d.
“A ccio F ir e b olt! ” h e s h oute d .
Harry w aite d , e v ery f ib er o f h im h opin g, p ra y in g… I f it h ad n't w ork ed … if
it w asn 't c o m in g… H e s e em ed to b e lo okin g a t e v ery th in g a ro und h im th ro ugh
so m e s o rt o f s h im merin g, tr a n sp are n t b arrie r, lik e a h eat h aze, w hic h m ad e th e
en clo su re a n d t h e h undre d s o f f a ces a ro und h im s w im s tr a n gely …
And th en h e h eard it, s p eed in g th ro ugh th e a ir b eh in d h im ; h e tu rn ed a n d
sa w h is F ir e b olt h urtlin g to w ard h im a ro und th e e d ge o f th e w oods, s o arin g in to
th e e n clo su re , a n d s to ppin g d ead i n m id air b esid e h im , w aitin g f o r h im t o m ount.
The c ro w d w as m ak in g e v en m ore n ois e … B ag m an w as s h outin g s o m eth in g…
but H arry 's ears w ere not w ork in g pro perly an ym ore … lis te n in g w asn 't
im porta n t…
He s w ung h is le g o ver th e b ro om a n d k ic k ed o ff fro m th e g ro und. A nd a
se co nd l a te r, s o m eth in g m ir a cu lo us h ap pen ed …

As h e s o are d u pw ard , a s th e w in d ru sh ed th ro ugh h is h air , a s th e c ro w d's
fa ces b ecam e m ere f le sh -c o lo re d p in pnic k s b elo w , a n d t h e H orn ta il s h ra n k t o t h e
siz e o f a d og, h e re aliz ed th at h e h ad h eft n ot o nly th e g ro und b eh in d, b ut a ls o
his f e ar… H e w as b ack w here h e b elo nged …
This w as ju st an oth er Q uid ditc h m atc h , th at w as all… ju st an oth er
Quid ditc h m atc h , a n d t h at H orn ta il w as j u st a n oth er u gly o pposin g t e am .
He lo oked d ow n a t th e c lu tc h o f e g gs a n d s p otte d th e g old o ne, g le am in g
ag ain st its c em en t- c o lo re d fe llo w s, re sid in g sa fe ly b etw een th e d ra g on's fro nt
le g s. “ O kay,” H arry t o ld h im se lf , “ d iv ers io nary t a ctic s… l e t's g o… ”
He d iv ed . T he H orn ta il's h ead f o llo w ed h im ; h e k new w hat it w as g oin g to
do a n d p ulle d o ut o f th e d iv e ju st in tim e; a je t o f f ir e h ad b een r e le ase d e x actly
where h e w ould h av e b een h ad h e n ot s w erv ed a w ay … b ut H arry d id n't c are …
th at w as n o m ore t h an d odgin g a B lu dger.
“G re at S co tt, h e c an f ly !” y elle d B ag m an a s t h e c ro w d s h rie k ed a n d g asp ed .
“A re y ou w atc h in g t h is , M r. K ru m ?”
Harry so are d hig her in a cir c le ; th e H orn ta il w as still fo llo w in g his
pro gre ss; its h ead re v olv in g o n its lo ng n eck — if h e k ep t th is u p, it w ould b e
nic ely d iz zy — but b ette r n ot p ush it to o lo ng, o r it w ould b e b re ath in g f ir e a g ain

Harry p lu m mete d ju st a s th e H orn ta il o pen ed its m outh , b ut th is tim e h e
was le ss lu ck y— he m is se d th e fla m es, b ut th e ta il c am e w hip pin g u p to m eet
him in ste ad , a n d a s h e sw erv ed to th e le ft, o ne o f th e lo ng sp ik es g ra zed h is
sh ould er, r ip pin g h is r o bes—
He c o uld fe el it stin gin g, h e c o uld h ear sc re am in g a n d g ro an s fro m th e
cro w d, b ut th e c u t d id n't s e em to b e d eep … N ow h e z o om ed a ro und th e b ack o f
th e H orn ta il, a n d a p ossib ility o ccu rre d t o h im …
The H orn ta il d id n't s e em to w an t to ta k e o ff , s h e w as to o p ro te ctiv e o f h er
eg gs. T hough sh e w rith ed an d tw is te d , fu rlin g an d u nfu rlin g h er w in gs an d
keep in g th ose fe ars o m e y ello w e y es o n H arry , s h e w as a fra id to m ove to o fa r
fro m th em … b ut h e h ad to p ers u ad e h er to d o it, o r h e'd n ev er g et n ear th em …
The t r ic k w as t o d o i t c are fu lly , g ra d ually …
He b eg an to f ly , f ir s t th is w ay, th en th e o th er, n ot n ear e n ough to m ak e h er
bre ath e f ir e t o s ta v e h im o ff , b ut s till p osin g a s u ff ic ie n t t h re at t o e n su re s h e k ep t
her e y es o n h im . H er h ead s w ay ed th is w ay a n d th at, w atc h in g h im o ut o f th ose
vertic al p upils , h er f a n gs b are d …
He f le w h ig her. T he H orn ta il's h ead r o se w ith h im , h er n eck n ow s tr e tc h ed
to i ts f u lle st e x te n t, s till s w ay in g, h ik e a s n ak e b efo re i ts c h arm er…
Harry r o se a f e w m ore f e et, a n d s h e le t o ut a r o ar o f e x asp era tio n. H e w as
lik e a f ly t o h er, a f ly s h e w as l o ngin g t o s w at; h er t a il t h ra sh ed a g ain , b ut h e w as

to o h ig h to r e ach n ow … S he s h ot f ir e in to th e a ir , w hic h h e d odged … H er ja w s
open ed w id e…
“C om e on,” H arry his se d , sw erv in g ta n ta liz in gly ab ove her, “co m e on,
co m e a n d g et m e… u p y ou g et n ow ..”
And th en s h e re are d , s p re ad in g h er g re at, b la ck , le ath ery w in gs a t la st, a s
wid e a s th ose o f a sm all a ir p la n e— an d H arry d iv ed . B efo re th e d ra g on k new
what h e h ad d one, o r w here h e h ad d is a p peare d to , h e w as s p eed in g to w ard th e
gro und a s fa st a s h e c o uld g o, to w ard th e e g gs n ow u npro te cte d b y h er c la w ed
fro nt le g s— he h ad ta k en h is h an ds o ff h is F ir e b olt— he h ad s e iz ed th e g old en
eg g—
And w ith a h uge s p urt o f s p eed , h e w as o ff , h e w as s o arin g o ut o ver th e
sta n ds, th e h eav y eg g sa fe ly u nder h is u nin ju re d arm , an d it w as as th ough
so m eb ody h ad ju st tu rn ed th e v olu m e b ack u p— fo r th e fir s t tim e, h e b ecam e
pro perly a w are o f th e n ois e o f th e c ro w d, w hic h w as s c re am in g a n d a p pla u din g
as l o udly a s t h e I ris h s u pporte rs a t t h e W orld C up—
“L ook a t th at! ” B ag m an w as y ellin g. “ W ill y ou lo ok a t th at! O ur y oungest
ch am pio n is q uic k est to g et h is e g g! W ell, th is is g oin g to s h orte n th e o dds o n
Mr. P otte r!”
Harry s a w th e d ra g on k eep ers r u sh in g f o rw ard to s u bdue th e H orn ta il, a n d,
over a t th e e n tr a n ce to th e e n clo su re , P ro fe sso r M cG onag alh , P ro fe sso r M oody,
an d H ag rid h urry in g to m eet h im , a ll o f th em w av in g h im to w ard th em , th eir
sm ile s e v id en t e v en f ro m th is d is ta n ce. H e f le w b ack o ver th e s ta n ds, th e n ois e
of th e c ro w d p oundin g h is e ard ru m s, a n d c am e in sm ooth ly to la n d, h is h eart
lig hte r th an it h ad b een in w eek s… H e h ad g ot th ro ugh th e fir s t ta sk , h e h ad
su rv iv ed .
“T hat w as e x celle n t, P otte r!” c rie d P ro fe sso r M cG onag all a s h e g ot o ff th e
Fir e b olt— whic h fro m h er w as ex tr a v ag an t p ra is e . H e n otic ed th at h er h an d
sh ook a s s h e p oin te d a t h is s h ould er. “ Y ou'l l n eed to s e e M ad am P om fre y b efo re
th e ju dges g iv e o ut y our sc o re … O ver th ere , sh e's h ad to m op u p D ig gory
alr e ad y… ”
“Y eh d id it, H arry !” sa id H ag rid h oars e ly . “Y eh d id it! A n' ag ain s' th e
Horn ta il a n ' a ll, a n ' y eh k now C harlie s a id t h at w as t h e w ors '— ”
“T han ks, H ag rid ,” sa id H arry lo udly , so th at H ag rid w ould n't b lu nder o n
an d r e v eal t h at h e h ad s h ow n H arry t h e d ra g ons b efo re h an d.
Pro fe sso r M oody lo oked v ery p le ase d to o; h is m ag ic al e y e w as d an cin g in
its s o ck et.
“N ic e a n d e asy d oes t h e t r ic k , P otte r,” h e g ro w le d .
“R ig ht t h en , P otte r, t h e f ir s t a id t e n t, p le ase … ” s a id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all.
Harry w alk ed o ut o f th e e n clo su re , s till p an tin g, a n d s a w M ad am P om fre y

sta n din g a t t h e m outh o f a s e co nd t e n t, l o okin g w orrie d .
“D ra g ons!” s h e s a id , i n a d is g uste d t o ne, p ullin g H arry i n sid e. T he t e n t w as
div id ed in to c u bic le s; h e c o uld m ak e o ut C ed ric 's s h ad ow th ro ugh th e c an vas,
but C ed ric d id n't s e em to b e b ad ly in ju re d ; h e w as s ittin g u p, a t le ast. M ad am
Pom fre y e x am in ed H arry 's s h ould er, ta lk in g fu rio usly a ll th e w hile . “ L ast y ear
dem en to rs , th is y ear d ra g ons, w hat a re th ey g oin g to b rin g in to th is s c h ool n ex t?
You'r e v ery l u ck y… t h is i s q uite s h allo w … i t'l l n eed c le an in g b efo re I h eal i t u p,
th ough… ”
She c le an ed t h e c u t w ith a d ab o f s o m e p urp le l iq uid t h at s m oked a n d s tu ng,
but t h en p oked h is s h ould er w ith h er w an d, a n d h e f e lt i t h eal i n sta n tly .
“N ow , ju st s it q uie tly f o r a m in ute — sit! A nd th en y ou c an g o a n d g et y our
sc o re .”
She b ustle d o ut o f th e te n t a n d h e h eard h er g o n ex t d oor a n d s a y, “ H ow
does i t f e el n ow , D ig gory ?”
Harry d id n't w an t to s it s till: H e w as to o fu ll o f a d re n alin e. H e g ot to h is
fe et, w an tin g to se e w hat w as g oin g o n o uts id e, b ut b efo re h e'd re ach ed th e
mouth o f th e te n t, tw o p eo ple h ad c o m e d artin g in sid e— Herm io ne, fo llo w ed
clo se ly b y R on.
“H arry , y ou w ere b rillia n t! ” H erm io ne s a id s q ueak ily . T here w ere f in gern ail
mark s o n h er f a ce w here s h e h ad b een c lu tc h in g it in f e ar. “ Y ou w ere a m azin g!
You r e ally w ere !”
But H arry w as lo okin g a t R on, w ho w as v ery w hite a n d s ta rin g a t H arry a s
th ough h e w ere a g host.
“H arry ,” h e s a id , v ery s e rio usly , “ w hoev er p ut y our n am e in th at g oble t— I
—I r e ck on t h ey 'r e t r y in g t o d o y ou i n !”
It w as a s th ough th e la st f e w w eek s h ad n ev er h ap pen ed — as th ough H arry
were m eetin g R on f o r t h e f ir s t t im e, r ig ht a fte r h e'd b een m ad e c h am pio n.
“C au ght o n, h av e y ou?” s a id H arry c o ld ly . “ T ook y ou l o ng e n ough.”
Herm io ne sto od n erv ously b etw een th em , lo okin g fro m o ne to th e o th er.
Ron o pen ed h is m outh u ncerta in ly . H arry k new R on w as a b out to a p olo giz e a n d
su dden ly h e f o und h e d id n't n eed t o h ear i t.
“It's o kay,” h e s a id , b efo re R on c o uld g et t h e w ord s o ut. “ F org et i t.”
“N o,” s a id R on, “ I s h ould n't 'v e— ”
“F org et i t, “ H arry s a id .
Ron g rin ned n erv ously a t h im , a n d H arry g rin ned b ack
Herm io ne b urs t i n to t e ars .
“T here 's n oth in g t o c ry a b out! ” H arry t o ld h er, b ew ild ere d .
“Y ou tw o a re so stu pid !” sh e sh oute d , sta m pin g h er fo ot o n th e g ro und,
te ars s p la sh in g d ow n h er fro nt. T hen , b efo re e ith er o f th em c o uld s to p h er, s h e

had g iv en b oth o f t h em a h ug a n d d ash ed a w ay, n ow p ositiv ely h ow lin g.
“B ark in g m ad ,” sa id R on, sh ak in g his head . “H arry , c'm on, th ey 'l l be
puttin g u p y our s c o re s… ”
Pic k in g u p th e g old en e g g a n d h is F ir e b olt, fe elin g m ore e la te d th an h e
would h av e b elie v ed p ossib le a n h our a g o, H arry d uck ed o ut o f th e te n t, R on b y
his s id e, t a lk in g f a st.
“Y ou w ere th e b est, y ou k now , n o c o m petitio n. C ed ric d id th is w eir d th in g
where h e T ra n sfig ure d a ro ck o n th e g ro und… tu rn ed it in to a d og… h e w as
tr y in g to m ak e th e d ra g on g o fo r th e d og in ste ad o f h im . W ell, it w as a p re tty
co ol b it o f T ra n sfig ura tio n, a n d i t s o rt o f w ork ed , b ecau se h e d id g et t h e e g g, b ut
he got burn ed as w ell— th e dra g on ch an ged its m in d half w ay th ro ugh an d
decid ed it w ould r a th er h av e h im th an th e L ab ra d or; h e o nly ju st g ot a w ay. A nd
th at F le u r g ir l tr ie d th is so rt o f c h arm , I th in k sh e w as tr y in g to p ut it in to a
tr a n ce— well, th at k in d o f w ork ed to o, it w en t a ll s le ep y, b ut th en it s n ore d , a n d
th is g re at j e t o f f la m e s h ot o ut, a n d h er s k ir t c au ght f ir e — sh e p ut i t o ut w ith a b it
of w ate r o ut o f h er w an d. A nd K ru m — you w on't b elie v e th is , b ut h e d id n't e v en
th in k o f f ly in g! H e w as p ro bab ly t h e b est a fte r y ou, t h ough. H it i t w ith s o m e s o rt
of s p ell rig ht in th e e y e. O nly th in g is , it w en t tr a m plin g a ro und in a g ony a n d
sq uash ed h alf th e r e al e g gs— th ey to ok m ark s o ff f o r th at, h e w asn 't s u ppose d to
do a n y d am ag e t o t h em .”
Ron d re w b re ath a s h e a n d H arry re ach ed th e e d ge o f th e e n clo su re . N ow
th at th e H orn ta il h ad b een ta k en a w ay, H arry c o uld s e e w here th e fiv e ju dges
were s ittin g— rig ht a t t h e o th er e n d, i n r a is e d s e ats d ra p ed i n g old .
“It's m ark s o ut o f te n f ro m e ach o ne,” R on s a id , a n d H arry s q uin tin g u p th e
fie ld , s a w th e fir s t ju dge— Mad am e M ax im e— ra is e h er w an d in th e a ir. W hat
hooked lik e a lo ng s ilv er rib bon s h ot o ut o f it, w hic h tw is te d its e lf in to a la rg e
fig ure e ig ht.
“N ot b ad !” s a id R on a s t h e c ro w d a p pla u ded . “ I s u ppose s h e t o ok m ark s o ff
fo r y our s h ould er…
Mr. C ro uch c am e n ex t. H e s h ot a n um ber n in e i n to t h e a ir.
“L ookin g g ood!” R on y elle d , t h um pin g H arry o n t h e b ack .
Nex t, D um ble d ore . H e to o p ut u p a n in e. T he c ro w d w as c h eerin g h ard er
th an e v er.
Ludo B ag m an — te n .
“T en ?” s a id H arry i n d is b elie f. “ B ut… I g ot h urt… W hat's h e p la y in g a t? ”
“H arry , d on't c o m pla in !” R on y elle d e x cite d ly .
And n ow K ark aro ff ra is e d h is w an d. H e p au se d fo r a m om en t, a n d th en a
num ber s h ot o ut o f h is w an d t o o— fo ur.
“W hat? ” R on b ello w ed f u rio usly . “ F our? Y ou lo usy , b ia se d s c u m -b ag , y ou

gav e K ru m t e n !”
But H arry d id n't c are , h e w ould n't h av e c are d if K ark aro ff h ad g iv en h im
zero ; R on's in dig natio n o n h is b eh alf w as w orth a b out a h undre d p oin ts to h im .
He d id n't t e ll R on t h is , o f c o urs e , b ut h is h eart f e lt l ig hte r t h an a ir a s h e t u rn ed t o
le av e th e e n clo su re . A nd it w asn 't ju st R on… th ose w ere n 't o nly G ry ff in dors
ch eerin g in th e c ro w d. W hen it h ad c o m e to it, w hen th ey h ad s e en w hat h e w as
fa cin g, m ost o f th e s c h ool h ad b een o n h is s id e a s w ell a s C ed ric 's … H e d id n't
care a b out t h e S ly th erin s, h e c o uld s ta n d w hate v er t h ey t h re w a t h im n ow .
“Y ou'r e tie d in fir s t p la ce, H arry ! Y ou a n d K ru m !” s a id C harlie W easle y,
hurry in g t o m eet t h em a s t h ey s e t o ff b ack t o w ard t h e s c h ool. “ L is te n , I 'v e g ot t o
ru n, I 'v e g ot to g o a n d s e n d M um a n o w l, I s w ore I 'd te ll h er w hat h ap pen ed —
but th at w as u nbelie v ab le ! O h y eah — an d th ey to ld m e to te ll y ou y ou'v e g ot to
han g aro und fo r a fe w m ore m in ute s… B ag m an w an ts a w ord , b ack in th e
ch am pio ns' t e n t.”
Ron sa id he w ould w ait, so H arry re en te re d th e te n t, w hic h so m eh ow
lo oked q uite d if f e re n t n ow : frie n dly a n d w elc o m in g. H e th ought b ack to h ow
he'd f e lt w hile d odgin g t h e H orn ta il, a n d c o m pare d i t t o t h e l o ng w ait b efo re h e'd
walk ed out to fa ce it… There w as no co m paris o n; th e w ait had been
im measu ra b ly w ors e .
Fle u r, C ed ric , a n d K ru m a ll c am e i n t o geth er. O ne s id e o f C ed ric 's f a ce w as
co vere d in a th ic k o ra n ge p aste , w hic h w as p re su m ab ly m en din g h is b urn . H e
grin ned a t H arry w hen h e s a w h im .
“G ood o ne, H arry .”
“A nd y ou,” s a id H arry , g rin nin g b ack .
“W ell d one, a ll o f y ou!” sa id L udo B ag m an , b ouncin g in to th e te n t a n d
lo okin g a s p le ase d a s t h ough h e p ers o nally h ad j u st g ot p ast a d ra g on. “ N ow , j u st
a q uic k f e w w ord s. Y ou'v e g ot a n ic e lo ng b re ak b efo re th e s e co nd ta sk , w hic h
will ta k e p la ce a t h alf p ast n in e o n th e m orn in g o f F eb ru ary th e tw en ty -fo urth —
but w e'r e g iv in g y ou so m eth in g to th in k a b out in th e m ean tim e! If y ou lo ok
dow n a t th ose g old en e g gs y ou'r e a ll h old in g, y ou w ill s e e th at th ey o pen … s e e
th e h in ges th ere ? Y ou n eed to s o lv e th e c lu e in sid e th e e g g— becau se it w ill te ll
you w hat th e s e co nd ta sk is , a n d e n ab le y ou to p re p are fo r it! A ll c le ar? S ure ?
Well, o ff y ou g o, t h en !”
Harry le ft th e te n t, r e jo in ed R on, a n d th ey s ta rte d to w alk b ack a ro und th e
ed ge o f th e f o re st, ta lk in g h ard ; H arry w an te d to h ear w hat th e o th er c h am pio ns
had d one in m ore d eta il. T hen , a s th ey r o unded th e c lu m p o f tr e es b eh in d w hic h
Harry h ad f ir s t h eard t h e d ra g ons r o ar, a w itc h l e ap t o ut f ro m b eh in d t h em .
It w as R ita S keete r. S he w as w earin g a cid -g re en ro bes to day ; th e Q uic k -
Quote s Q uill i n h er h an d b le n ded p erfe ctly a g ain st t h em .

“C ongra tu la tio ns, H arry !” s h e s a id , b eam in g a t h im . “ I w onder i f y ou c o uld
giv e m e a q uic k w ord ? H ow y ou fe lt fa cin g th at d ra g on? H ow y ou fe el n ow ,
ab out t h e f a ir n ess o f t h e s c o rin g?”
“Y eah , y ou c an h av e a w ord ,” s a id H arry s a v ag ely . “ G ood-b ye.”
And h e s e t o ff b ack t o t h e c astle w ith R on.

C H APT ER T W EN TY-O NE
T H E H OUSE -E LF L IB ER AT IO N F R O NT
Harry , R on, an d H erm io ne w en t u p to th e O wle ry th at ev en in g to fin d
P ig w id geo n, so th at H arry co uld se n d S ir iu s a le tte r te llin g h im th at h e h ad
m an ag ed to g et p ast h is d ra g on u nsc ath ed . O n th e w ay, H arry fille d R on in o n
e v ery th in g S ir iu s h ad to ld h im a b out K ark aro ff . T hough s h ock ed a t f ir s t to h ear
t h at K ark aro ff h ad b een a D eath E ate r, b y th e tim e th ey e n te re d th e O wle ry R on
w as s a y in g t h at t h ey o ught t o h av e s u sp ecte d i t a ll a lo ng.
“F its , d oesn 't it? ” h e s a id . “ R em em ber w hat M alf o y s a id o n th e tr a in , a b out
h is d ad b ein g frie n ds w ith K ark aro ff ? N ow w e k now w here th ey k new e ach
o th er. T hey w ere p ro bab ly r u nnin g a ro und i n m ask s t o geth er a t t h e W orld C up…
I 'l l te ll y ou o ne th in g, th ough, H arry , if it w as K ark aro ff w ho p ut y our n am e in
t h e g oble t, h e's g oin g to b e f e elin g r e ally s tu pid n ow , is n 't h e? D id n't w ork , d id
i t? Y ou o nly g ot a s c ra tc h ! C om e h ere — I'l l d o i t— ”
Pig w id geo n w as so o vere x cite d at th e id ea o f a d eliv ery h e w as fly in g
a ro und a n d a ro und H arry 's h ead , h ootin g in cessa n tly . R on s n atc h ed P ig w id geo n
o ut o f t h e a ir a n d h eld h im s till w hile H arry a tta ch ed t h e l e tte r t o h is l e g .
“T here 's n o w ay a n y o f th e o th er ta sk s a re g oin g to b e th at d an gero us, h ow
c o uld th ey b e?” R on w en t o n a s h e c arrie d P ig w id geo n to th e w in dow . “ Y ou
k now w hat? I r e ck on y ou c o uld w in t h is t o urn am en t, H arry , I 'm s e rio us.”
Harry k new th at R on w as o nly s a y in g th is to m ak e u p fo r h is b eh av io r o f
t h e la st fe w w eek s, b ut h e ap pre cia te d it all th e sa m e. H erm io ne, h ow ev er,
l e an ed a g ain st t h e O wle ry w all, f o ld ed h er a rm s, a n d f ro w ned a t R on.
“H arry 's g ot a lo ng w ay to g o b efo re h e f in is h es th is to urn am en t,” s h e s a id
s e rio usly . “ If t h at w as t h e f ir s t t a sk , I h ate t o t h in k w hat's c o m in g n ex t.”
“R ig ht little ra y o f su nsh in e, a re n 't y ou?” sa id R on. “ Y ou a n d P ro fe sso r
T re la w ney s h ould g et t o geth er s o m etim e.”
He th re w P ig w id geo n o ut o f th e w in dow . P ig w id geo n p lu m mete d tw elv e
f e et b efo re m an ag in g to p ull h im se lf b ack u p a g ain ; th e le tte r a tta ch ed to h is le g
w as m uch l o nger a n d h eav ie r t h an u su al— Harry h ad n't b een a b le t o r e sis t g iv in g
S ir iu s a b lo w -b y-b lo w acco unt o f ex actly h ow h e h ad sw erv ed , cir c le d , an d
d odged t h e H orn ta il. T hey w atc h ed P ig w id geo n d is a p pear i n to t h e d ark ness, a n d
t h en R on s a id , “ W ell, w e'd b ette r g et d ow nsta ir s f o r y our s u rp ris e p arty , H arry —
F re d a n d G eo rg e s h ould h av e n ic k ed e n ough f o od f ro m t h e k itc h en s b y n ow .”
Sure e n ough, w hen th ey e n te re d th e G ry ff in dor c o m mon r o om it e x plo ded
w ith ch eers an d y ells ag ain . T here w ere m ounta in s o f cak es an d fla g ons o f

pum pkin ju ic e a n d b utte rb eer o n e v ery su rfa ce; L ee Jo rd an h ad le t o ff so m e
Filib uste r's F ir e w ork s, s o th at th e a ir w as th ic k w ith s ta rs a n d s p ark s; a n d D ean
Thom as, w ho w as v ery g ood at d ra w in g, h ad p ut u p so m e im pre ssiv e n ew
ban ners , m ost o f w hic h d ep ic te d H arry z o om in g a ro und th e H orn ta il's h ead o n
his F ir e b olt, t h ough a c o uple s h ow ed C ed ric w ith h is h ead o n f ir e .
Harry h elp ed h im se lf to fo od; h e h ad a lm ost fo rg otte n w hat it w as lik e to
fe el p ro perly h ungry , a n d s a t d ow n w ith R on a n d H erm io ne. H e c o uld n't b elie v e
how h ap py h e fe lt; h e h ad R on b ack o n h is s id e, h e'd g otte n th ro ugh th e fir s t
ta sk , a n d h e w ould n't h av e t o f a ce t h e s e co nd o ne f o r t h re e m onth s.
“B lim ey, th is is h eav y,” s a id L ee J o rd an , p ic k in g u p th e g old en e g g, w hic h
Harry h ad le ft o n a ta b le , a n d w eig hin g it in h is h an ds. “ O pen it, H arry , g o o n!
Let's j u st s e e w hat's i n sid e i t! ”
“H e's s u ppose d to w ork o ut th e c lu e o n h is o w n,” H erm io ne s a id s w if tly .
“It's i n t h e t o urn am en t r u le s… ”
“I w as s u ppose d to w ork o ut h ow to g et p ast th e d ra g on o n m y o w n to o,”
Harry m utte re d , so only H erm io ne co uld hear him , an d sh e grin ned ra th er
guiltily .
“Y eah , g o o n, H arry , o pen i t! ” s e v era l p eo ple e ch oed .
Lee p asse d H arry t h e e g g, a n d H arry d ug h is f in gern ails i n to t h e g ro ove t h at
ra n a ll t h e w ay a ro und i t a n d p ris e d i t o pen .
It w as h ollo w a n d c o m ple te ly e m pty — but th e m om en t H arry o pen ed it, th e
most h orrib le n ois e , a lo ud a n d s c re ech y w ailin g, fille d th e ro om . T he n eare st
th in g to it H arry h ad e v er h eard w as th e g host o rc h estr a a t N early H ead le ss
Nic k 's d eath day p arty , w ho h ad a ll b een p la y in g t h e m usic al s a w .
“S hut i t! ” F re d b ello w ed , h is h an ds o ver h is e ars .
“W hat w as th at? ” sa id Seam us Fin nig an , sta rin g at th e eg g as H arry
sla m med it s h ut a g ain . “ S ounded lik e a b an sh ee … May be y ou'v e g ot to g et p ast
one o f t h ose n ex t, H arry !”
“It w as s o m eo ne b ein g to rtu re d !” s a id N ev ille , w ho h ad g one v ery w hite
an d sp ille d sa u sa g e ro lls a ll o ver th e flo or. “ Y ou'r e g oin g to h av e to fig ht th e
Cru cia tu s C urs e !”
“D on't b e a p ra t, N ev ille , th at's ille g al,” s a id G eo rg e. “ T hey w ould n't u se
th e C ru cia tu s C urs e o n th e c h am pio ns. I th ought it so unded a b it lik e P erc y
sin gin g… m ay be y ou'v e g ot t o a tta ck h im w hile h e's i n t h e s h ow er. H arry .”
“W an t a j a m t a rt, H erm io ne?” s a id F re d .
Herm io ne l o oked d oubtf u lly a t t h e p la te h e w as o ff e rin g h er. F re d g rin ned .
“It's a ll rig ht,” h e sa id . “ I h av en 't d one a n yth in g to th em . It's th e c u sta rd
cre am s y ou'v e g ot t o w atc h — ”
Nev ille , w ho h ad ju st b itte n in to a c u sta rd c re am , c h oked a n d s p at it o ut.

Fre d l a u ghed .
“Ju st m y l ittle j o ke, N ev ille … ”
Herm io ne to ok a ja m ta rt. T hen sh e sa id , “ D id y ou g et a ll th is fro m th e
kitc h en s, F re d ?”
“Y ep ,” sa id F re d , g rin nin g at h er. H e p ut o n a h ig h-p itc h ed sq ueak an d
im ita te d a h ouse -e lf . “ 'A nyth in g w e c an g et y ou, sir , a n yth in g a t a ll! ' T hey 'r e
dead h elp fu l… g et m e a r o ast o x i f I s a id I w as p eck is h .”
“H ow d o y ou g et in th ere ?” H erm io ne s a id in a n in nocen tly c asu al s o rt o f
voic e.
“E asy ,” s a id F re d , “ co nceale d d oor b eh in d a p ain tin g o f a b ow l o f f ru it. J u st
tic k le th e p ear, a n d it g ig gle s a n d— ” H e s to pped a n d lo oked s u sp ic io usly a t h er.
“W hy?”
“N oth in g,” s a id H erm io ne q uic k ly .
“G oin g to tr y a n d le ad th e h ouse -e lv es o ut o n s tr ik e n ow , a re y ou?” s a id
Geo rg e. “ G oin g to g iv e u p a ll th e le afle t stu ff a n d tr y a n d stir th em u p in to
re b ellio n?”
Sev era l p eo ple c h ortle d . H erm io ne d id n't a n sw er.
“D on't y ou g o u pse ttin g th em a n d te llin g th em th ey 'v e g ot to ta k e c lo th es
an d s a la rie s!” s a id F re d w arn in gly . “ Y ou'l l p ut t h em o ff t h eir c o okin g!”
Ju st t h en , N ev ille c au se d a s lig ht d iv ers io n b y t u rn in g i n to a l a rg e c an ary .
“O h— so rry , N ev ille !” F re d s h oute d o ver a ll th e la u ghte r. “ I f o rg ot— it w as
th e c u sta rd
cre am s w e h ex ed — ”
With in a m in ute , h ow ev er, N ev ille h ad m olte d , a n d o nce h is fe ath ers h ad
fa lle n o ff , h e r e ap peare d l o okin g e n tir e ly n orm al. H e e v en j o in ed i n l a u ghin g.
“C an ary C re am s!” F re d sh oute d to th e ex cita b le cro w d. “G eo rg e an d I
in ven te d t h em — se v en S ic k le s e ach , a b arg ain !”
It w as nearly one in th e m orn in g w hen H arry fin ally w en t up to th e
dorm ito ry w ith R on, N ev ille , S eam us, a n d D ean . B efo re h e p ulle d t h e c u rta in s o f
his fo ur- p oste r s h ut. H arry s e t h is tin y m odel o f th e H ungaria n H orn ta il o n th e
ta b le n ex t to h is b ed , w here it y aw ned , c u rle d u p, a n d c lo se d its e y es. R eally ,
Harry th ought, a s h e p ulle d th e h an gin gs o n h is f o ur- p oste r c lo se d , H ag rid h ad a
poin t… t h ey w ere a ll r ig ht, r e ally , d ra g ons…
The s ta rt o f D ecem ber b ro ught w in d a n d s le et to H ogw arts . D ra fty th ough
th e c astle a lw ay s w as in w in te r. H arry w as g la d o f its f ir e s a n d th ic k w alls e v ery
tim e h e p asse d th e D urm str a n g s h ip o n th e la k e, w hic h w as p itc h in g in th e h ig h
win ds, i ts b la ck s a ils b illo w in g
ag ain st t h e d ark s k ie s. H e t h ought t h e B eau xbato ns c ara v an w as l ik ely t o b e
pre tty c h illy t o o. H ag rid , h e n otic ed , w as k eep in g M ad am e M ax im e's h ors e s w ell

pro vid ed w ith th eir p re fe rre d d rin k o f sin gle -m alt w his k ey ; th e fu m es w aftin g
fro m th e tr o ugh in th e c o m er o f th eir p ad dock w as e n ough to m ak e th e e n tir e
Care o f M ag ic al C re atu re s c la ss lig ht- h ead ed . T his w as u nhelp fu l, a s th ey w ere
still t e n din g t h e h orrib le s k re w ts a n d n eed ed t h eir w its a b out t h em .
“I'm n ot s u re w heth er t h ey h ib ern ate o r n ot,” H ag rid t o ld t h e s h iv erin g c la ss
in th e w in dy p um pkin p atc h n ex t le sso n. “ T hought w e'd ju s' tr y a n s e e if th ey
fa n cie d a k ip … w e'l l j u s' s e ttle 'e m d ow n i n t h ese b oxes… ”
There w ere n ow o nly te n sk re w ts le ft; a p pare n tly th eir d esir e to k ill o ne
an oth er h ad n ot b een e x erc is e d o ut o f th em . E ach o f th em w as n ow a p pro ach in g
six fe et in le n gth . T heir th ic k g ra y a rm or; th eir p ow erfu l, sc u ttlin g le g s; th eir
fir e -b la stin g e n ds; th eir s tin gs a n d th eir s u ck ers , c o m bin ed to m ak e th e s k re w ts
th e m ost re p uls iv e th in gs H arry h ad e v er s e en . T he c la ss lo oked d is p ir ite d ly a t
th e e n orm ous b oxes H ag rid h ad b ro ught o ut, a ll lin ed w ith p illo w s a n d flu ff y
bla n kets .
“W e'l l ju s' le ad 'e m in h ere ,” H ag rid s a id , “ an ' p ut th e lid s o n, a n d w e'l l s e e
what h ap pen s.”
But th e sk re w ts , it tr a n sp ir e d , d id n ot h ib ern ate , an d d id n ot ap pre cia te
bein g fo rc ed in to p illo w -lin ed b oxes a n d n aile d in . H ag rid w as so on y ellin g,
“D on p an ic , n ow , d on' p an ic !” w hile th e s k re w ts r a m pag ed a ro und th e p um pkin
patc h , n ow s tr e w n w ith th e s m old erin g w re ck ag e o f th e b oxes. M ost o f th e c la ss
—Malf o y, C ra b be, a n d G oyle in th e le ad — had f le d in to H ag rid 's c ab in th ro ugh
th e back door an d barric ad ed th em se lv es in ; H arry , R on, an d H erm io ne,
how ev er, w ere am ong th ose w ho re m ain ed outs id e tr y in g to help H ag rid .
Togeth er th ey m an ag ed to r e str a in a n d tie u p n in e o f th e s k re w ts , th ough a t th e
co st o f n um ero us b urn s a n d c u ts ; f in ally , o nly o ne s k re w t w as l e ft.
“D on' frig hte n h im , n ow !” H ag rid sh oute d a s R on a n d H arry u se d th eir
wan ds to sh oot je ts of fie ry sp ark s at th e sk re w t, w hic h w as ad van cin g
men acin gly o n th em , its s tin g a rc h ed , q uiv erin g, o ver its b ack . “ Ju s' tr y a n s lip
th e r o pe 'r o und h is s tin g, s o h e w on h urt a n y o ' t h e o th ers !”
“Y eah , w e w ould n't w an t th at! ” R on sh oute d an grily as he an d H arry
back ed in to th e w all o f H ag rid 's c ab in , still h old in g th e sk re w t o ff w ith th eir
sp ark s.
“W ell, w ell, w ell… t h is d oes l o ok l ik e f u n.”
Rita S keete r w as le an in g on H ag rid 's gard en fe n ce, lo okin g in at th e
may hem . S he w as w earin g a th ic k m ag en ta clo ak w ith a fu rry p urp le co lla r
to day, a n d h er c ro co dile -s k in h an dbag w as o ver h er a rm .
Hag rid la u nch ed h im se lf fo rw ard o n to p o f th e s k re w t th at w as c o rn erin g
Harry a n d R on a n d f la tte n ed it; a b la st o f f ir e s h ot o ut o f its e n d, w ith erin g th e
pum pkin p la n ts n earb y.

“W ho'r e y ou?” H ag rid ask ed R ita S keete r as h e slip ped a lo op o f ro pe
aro und t h e s k re w t's s tin g a n d t ig hte n ed i t.
“R ita S keete r, D aily P ro phet re p orte r,” R ita re p lie d , b eam in g a t h im . H er
gold t e eth g lin te d .
“T hought D um ble d ore s a id y ou w ere n ' a llo w ed i n sid e t h e s c h ool a n ym ore ,”
sa id H ag rid , fro w nin g slig htly a s h e g ot o ff th e slig htly sq uash ed sk re w t a n d
sta rte d t u ggin g i t o ver t o i ts f e llo w s.
Rita a cte d a s t h ough s h e h ad n't h eard w hat H ag rid h ad s a id .
“W hat are th ese fa sc in atin g cre atu re s calle d ?” sh e ask ed , beam in g still
more w id ely .
“B la st- E nded S kre w ts ,” g ru nte d H ag rid .
“R eally ?” s a id R ita , a p pare n tly fu ll o f liv ely in te re st. “ I'v e n ev er h eard o f
th em b efo re … w here d o t h ey c o m e f ro m ?”
Harry n otic ed a d ull re d flu sh ris in g u p o ut o f H ag rid 's w ild b la ck b eard ,
an d h is h eart sa n k. W here h ad H ag rid g ot th e sk re w ts fro m ? H erm io ne, w ho
se em ed to b e th in kin g a lo ng th ese lin es, s a id q uic k ly , “ T hey 'r e v ery in te re stin g,
are n 't t h ey ? A re n 't t h ey. H arry ?”
“W hat? O h y eah … o uch … in te re stin g,” s a id H arry a s s h e s te p ped o n h is
fo ot.
“A h, y ou'r e h ere . H arry !” s a id R ita S keete r a s s h e lo oked a ro und. “ S o y ou
lik e C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s, d o y ou? O ne o f y our f a v orite l e sso ns? ”
“Y es,” s a id H arry s to utly . H ag rid b eam ed a t h im .
“L ovely ,” sa id R ita . “R eally lo vely . B een te ach in g lo ng?” sh e ad ded to
Hag rid .
Harry n otic ed h er e y es tr a v el o ver D ean (w ho h ad a n asty c u t a cro ss o ne
ch eek ). L av en der (w hose ro bes w ere b ad ly s in ged ), S eam us (w ho w as n urs in g
se v era l b urn t fin gers ), a n d th en to th e c ab in w in dow s, w here m ost o f th e c la ss
sto od, t h eir n ose s p re sse d a g ain st t h e g la ss w aitin g t o s e e i f t h e c o ast w as c le ar.
“T his i s o 'n y m e s e co nd y ear,” s a id H ag rid .
“L ovely … I d on't su ppose y ou'd lik e to g iv e an in te rv ie w , w ould y ou?
Share so m e of your ex perie n ce of m ag ic al cre atu re s? T he P ro phet does a
zo olo gic al c o lu m n e v ery W ed nesd ay, a s I'm su re y ou k now . W e c o uld fe atu re
th ese — er— Ban g-E nded S co ots .”
“B la st- E nded S kre w ts ,” H ag rid s a id e ag erly . “ E r— yeah , w hy n ot? ”
Harry had a very bad fe elin g ab out th is , but th ere w as no w ay of
co m munic atin g it to H ag rid w ith out R ita S keete r s e ein g, s o h e h ad to s ta n d a n d
watc h in s ile n ce a s H ag rid a n d R ita S keete r m ad e a rra n gem en ts to m eet in th e
Thre e B ro om stic k s f o r a g ood lo ng in te rv ie w la te r th at w eek . T hen th e b ell r a n g
up a t t h e c astle , s ig nalin g t h e e n d o f t h e l e sso n.

“W ell, g ood-b ye, H arry !” R ita S keete r c alle d m errily to h im a s h e s e t o ff
with R on a n d H erm io ne. “ U ntil F rid ay n ig ht, t h en , H ag rid !”
“S he'l l t w is t e v ery th in g h e s a y s,” H arry s a id u nder h is b re ath .
“Ju st a s lo ng a s h e d id n't im port th ose s k re w ts ille g ally o r a n yth in g,” s a id
Herm io ne d esp era te ly . T hey lo oked a t o ne a n oth er— it w as e x actly th e s o rt o f
th in g H ag rid m ig ht d o.
“H ag rid s b een in lo ad s o f tr o ub le b efo re , a n d D um ble d ore s n ev er s a ck ed
him ,” s a id R on c o nso lin gly . “ W ors t t h at c an h ap pen i s H ag rid 'l l h av e t o g et r id o f
th e s k re w ts . S orry … d id I s a y w ors t? I m ean t b est.”
Harry a n d H erm io ne la u ghed , a n d, f e elin g s lig htly m ore c h eerfu l, w en t o ff
to l u nch .
Harry th oro ughly e n jo yed d oub le D iv in atio n th at a fte rn oon; th ey w ere s till
doin g sta r c h arts a n d p re d ic tio ns, b ut n ow th at h e a n d R on w ere frie n ds o nce
more , th e w hole th in g s e em ed v ery f u nny a g ain . P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, w ho h ad
been s o p le ase d w ith th e p air o f th em w hen th ey h ad b een p re d ic tin g th eir o w n
horrif ic death s, quic k ly becam e ir rita te d as th ey sn ig gere d th ro ugh her
ex pla n atio n o f t h e v ario us w ay s i n w hic h P lu to c o uld d is ru pt e v ery day l if e .
“I w ould th in k,” sh e sa id , in a m ystic al w his p er th at d id n ot c o nceal h er
obvio us an noyan ce, “th at so m e of us” — sh e sta re d very m ean in gfu lly at
Harry “m ig ht b e a little le ss f riv olo us h ad th ey s e en w hat I h av e s e en d urin g m y
cry sta l g azin g la st n ig ht. A s I s a t h ere , a b so rb ed in m y n eed le w ork , th e u rg e to
co nsu lt th e o rb o verp ow ere d m e. I a ro se , I s e ttle d m yse lf b efo re it, a n d I g azed
in to i ts c ry sta llin e d ep th s… a n d w hat d o y ou t h in k I s a w g azin g b ack a t m e?”
“A n u gly o ld b at i n o uts iz e s p ecs? ” R on m utte re d u nder h is b re ath .
Harry f o ught h ard t o k eep h is f a ce s tr a ig ht.
“D eath , m y d ears .”
Parv ati an d L av en der both put th eir han ds over th eir m outh s, lo okin g
horrif ie d .
“Y es,” sa id P ro fe sso r T re la w ney, noddin g im pre ssiv ely , “it co m es, ev er
clo se r, it cir c le s overh ead lik e a vultu re , ev er lo w er… ev er lo w er over th e
castle … ”
She s ta re d p oin te d ly a t H arry , w ho y aw ned v ery w id ely a n d o bvio usly .
“It'd b e a b it m ore im pre ssiv e if sh e h ad n't d one it ab out eig hty tim es
befo re ,” H arry s a id a s th ey f in ally r e g ain ed th e f re sh a ir o f th e s ta ir c ase b en eath
Pro fe sso r T re la w ney 's ro om . “ B ut if I'd d ro pped d ead e v ery tim e s h e's to ld m e
I'm g oin g t o , I 'd b e a m ed ic al m ir a cle .”
“Y ou'd b e a s o rt o f e x tr a -c o ncen tr a te d g host,” s a id R on, c h ortlin g, a s th ey
passe d th e B lo ody B aro n g oin g in th e o pposite d ir e ctio n, h is w id e e y es s ta rin g
sin is te rly . “A t le ast w e d id n't g et h om ew ork . I h ope H erm io ne g ot lo ad s o ff

Pro fe sso r V ecto r, I l o ve n ot w ork in g w hen s h e i s … ”
But H erm io ne w asn 't a t d in ner, n or w as s h e i n t h e l ib ra ry w hen t h ey w en t t o
lo ok f o r h er a fte rw ard . T he o nly p ers o n in th ere w as V ik to r K ru m . R on h overe d
beh in d th e b ooksh elv es fo r a w hile , w atc h in g K ru m , d eb atin g in w his p ers w ith
Harry w heth er h e s h ould a sk f o r a n a u to gra p h— but t h en R on r e aliz ed t h at s ix o r
se v en g ir ls w ere lu rk in g in th e n ex t ro w o f b ooks, d eb atin g e x actly th e sa m e
th in g, a n d h e l o st h is e n th usia sm f o r t h e i d ea.
“W onder w here sh e's g ot to ?” R on sa id as h e an d H arry w en t b ack to
Gry ff in dor T ow er.
“D unno… b ald erd ash .”
But th e F at L ad y h ad b are ly b eg un to sw in g fo rw ard w hen th e so und o f
ra cin g f e et b eh in d t h em a n nounced H erm io ne's a rriv al.
“H arry !” sh e p an te d , sk id din g to a h alt b esid e h im (th e F at L ad y sta re d
dow n a t h er, e y eb ro w s r a is e d ). “ H arry , y ou'v e g ot to c o m e— you'v e g ot to c o m e,
th e m ost a m azin g t h in g's h ap pen ed ple ase — ”
She se iz ed H arry 's arm an d sta rte d to tr y to dra g him back alo ng th e
co rrid or.
“W hat's t h e m atte r? ” H arry s a id .
“I'l l s h ow y ou w hen w e g et t h ere — oh c o m e o n, q uic k — ”
Harry l o oked a ro und a t R on; h e l o oked b ack a t H arry , i n tr ig ued .
“O kay,” H arry sa id , sta rtin g o ff b ack d ow n th e c o rrid or w ith H erm io ne,
Ron h urry in g t o k eep u p.
“O h don't m in d m e!” th e F at L ad y calle d ir rita b ly afte r th em . “D on't
ap olo giz e fo r b oth erin g m e! I'l l ju st h an g h ere , w id e o pen , u ntil y ou g et b ack ,
sh all I ? ”
“Y eah , t h an ks!” R on s h oute d o ver h is s h ould er.
“H erm io ne, w here a re w e g oin g?” H arry a sk ed , a fte r s h e h ad l e d
th em d ow n th ro ugh s ix flo ors , a n d s ta rte d d ow n th e m arb le s ta ir c ase in to
th e e n tr a n ce h all.
“Y ou'l l s e e, y ou'l l s e e i n a m in ute !” s a id H erm io ne e x cite d ly .
She tu rn ed le ft a t th e b otto m o f th e s ta ir c ase a n d h urrie d to w ard th e d oor
th ro ugh w hic h C ed ric D ig gory h ad g one th e n ig ht a fte r th e G oble t o f F ir e h ad
re g urg ita te d h is a n d H arry 's n am es. H arry h ad n ev er b een th ro ugh h ere b efo re .
He a n d R on fo llo w ed H erm io ne d ow n a flig ht o f sto ne ste p s, b ut in ste ad o f
en din g u p in a g lo om y u nderg ro und p assa g e lik e th e o ne th at le d to S nap e's
dungeo n, th ey fo und th em se lv es in a bro ad sto ne co rrid or, brig htly lit w ith
to rc h es, a n d d eco ra te d w ith c h eerfu l p ain tin gs t h at w ere m ain ly o f f o od.
“O h h an g o n… ” sa id H arry slo w ly , h alf w ay d ow n th e c o rrid or. “ W ait a
min ute , H erm io ne… ”

“W hat? ” S he t u rn ed a ro und t o l o ok a t h im , a n tic ip atio n a ll o ver h er f a ce.
“I k now w hat t h is i s a b out,” s a id H arry .
He nudged R on an d poin te d to th e pain tin g ju st beh in d H erm io ne. It
sh ow ed a g ig an tic s ilv er f ru it b ow l.
“H erm io ne!” sa id R on, c o tto nin g o n. “ Y ou'r e tr y in g to ro pe u s in to th at
sp ew s tu ff a g ain !”
“N o, n o, I 'm n ot! ” s h e s a id h astily . “ A nd i t's n ot s p ew , R on— ”
“C han ged th e n am e, h av e y ou?” s a id R on, fro w nin g a t h er. “ W hat a re w e
now , th en , th e H ouse -E lf L ib era tio n F ro nt? I 'm n ot b arg in g in to th at k itc h en a n d
tr y in g t o m ak e t h em s to p w ork , I 'm n ot d oin g i t— ”
“I'm n ot a sk in g y ou t o !” H erm io ne s a id i m patie n tly . “ I c am e d ow n h ere j u st
now , t o t a lk t o t h em a ll, a n d I f o und— oh c o m e o n, H arry , I w an t t o s h ow y ou!”
She s e iz ed h is a rm a g ain , p ulle d h im i n f ro nt o f t h e p ic tu re o f t h e g ia n t f ru it
bow l, s tr e tc h ed o ut h er fo re fin ger, a n d tic k le d th e h uge g re en p ear. It b eg an to
sq uir m , ch uck lin g, an d su dden ly tu rn ed in to a la rg e gre en door han dle .
Herm io ne s e iz ed it, p ulle d th e d oor o pen , a n d p ush ed H arry h ard in th e b ack ,
fo rc in g h im i n sid e.
He h ad o ne b rie f g lim pse o f a n e n orm ous, h ig h-c eilin ged r o om , l a rg e a s t h e
Gre at H all a b ove i t, w ith m ounds o f g litte rin g b ra ss p ots a n d p an s h eap ed a ro und
th e sto ne w alls , a n d a g re at b ric k fir e p la ce a t th e o th er e n d, w hen so m eth in g
sm all h urtle d to w ard h im f ro m th e m id dle o f th e r o om , s q uealin g, “ H arry P otte r,
sir ! H arry P otte r!”
Nex t s e co nd a ll th e w in d h ad b een k nock ed o ut o f h im a s th e s q uealin g e lf
hit h im h ard in th e m id rif f , h uggin g h im so tig htly h e th ought h is rib s w ould
bre ak .
“D -D obby?” H arry g asp ed .
“It is D obby, sir , it is !” sq ueale d th e v oic e fro m so m ew here a ro und h is
nav el. “ D obby h as b een h opin g a n d h opin g to s e e H arry P otte r, s ir , a n d H arry
Potte r h as c o m e t o s e e h im , s ir !”
Dobby le t g o an d ste p ped b ack a fe w p aces, b eam in g u p at H arry , h is
en orm ous, g re en , te n nis -b all- s h ap ed e y es b rim min g w ith te ars o f h ap pin ess. H e
lo oked a lm ost e x actly a s H arry re m em bere d h im ; th e p en cil- s h ap ed n ose , th e
batlik e e ars , th e lo ng fin gers a n d fe et— all e x cep t th e c lo th es, w hic h w ere v ery
dif f e re n t.
When D obby h ad w ork ed fo r th e M alf o ys, h e h ad a lw ay s w orn th e s a m e
filth y o ld p illo w case . N ow , h ow ev er, h e w as w earin g th e s tr a n gest a sso rtm en t o f
garm en ts H arry h ad ev er se en ; h e h ad d one an ev en w ors e jo b o f d re ssin g
him se lf th an th e w iz ard s a t th e W orld C up. H e w as w earin g a te a c o zy f o r a h at,
on w hic h he had pin ned a num ber of brig ht bad ges; a tie patte rn ed w ith

hors e sh oes o ver a b are c h est, a p air o f w hat lo oked lik e c h ild re n 's s o ccer s h orts ,
an d o dd s o ck s. O ne o f th ese , H arry s a w , w as th e b la ck o ne H arry h ad r e m oved
fro m h is o w n fo ot a n d tr ic k ed M r. M alf o y in to g iv in g D obby, th ere b y se ttin g
Dobby f re e. T he o th er w as c o vere d i n p in k a n d o ra n ge s tr ip es.
“D obby, w hat'r e y ou d oin g h ere ?” H arry s a id in a m azem en t. “ D obby h as
co m e to work at Hogw arts , sir !” Dobby sq ueale d ex cite d ly . “P ro fe sso r
Dum ble d ore g av e D obby a n d W in ky j o bs, s ir !
“W in ky?” s a id H arry . “ S he's h ere t o o?”
“Y es, s ir , y es!” s a id D obby, a n d h e s e iz ed H arry 's h an d a n d p ulle d h im o ff
in to th e k itc h en b etw een th e fo ur lo ng w ooden ta b le s th at s to od th ere . E ach o f
th ese ta b le s, H arry n otic ed a s h e p asse d th em , w as p ositio ned e x actly b en eath
th e f o ur H ouse ta b le s a b ove, in th e G re at H all. A t th e m om en t, th ey w ere c le ar
of f o od, d in ner h av in g f in is h ed , b ut h e s u ppose d th at a n h our a g o th ey h ad b een
la d en w ith d is h es th at w ere th en s e n t u p th ro ugh th e c eilin g to th eir c o unte rp arts
ab ove.
At le ast a h undre d little e lv es w ere s ta n din g a ro und th e k itc h en , b eam in g,
bow in g, a n d c u rts y in g a s D obby le d H arry p ast th em . T hey w ere a ll w earin g th e
sa m e u nif o rm : a t e a t o w el s ta m ped w ith t h e H ogw arts c re st, a n d t ie d , a s W in ky's
had b een , l ik e a t o ga.
Dobby s to pped i n f ro nt o f t h e b ric k f ir e p la ce a n d p oin te d .
“W in ky, s ir !” h e s a id .
Win ky w as s ittin g o n a s to ol b y th e f ir e . U nlik e D obby, s h e h ad o bvio usly
not fo ra g ed fo r c lo th es. S he w as w earin g a n eat little sk ir t a n d b lo use w ith a
matc h in g b lu e h at, w hic h h ad h ole s i n i t f o r h er l a rg e e ars . H ow ev er, w hile e v ery
one o f D obby's s tr a n ge c o lle ctio n o f g arm en ts w as s o c le an a n d w ell c are d fo r
th at it lo oked b ra n d-n ew , W in ky w as p la in ly n ot ta k in g c are o th er c lo th es a t a ll.
There w ere s o up s ta in s a ll d ow n h er b lo use a n d a b urn i n h er s k ir t.
“H ello , W in ky,” s a id H arry .
Win ky's lip q uiv ere d . T hen sh e b urs t in to te ars , w hic h sp ille d o ut o f h er
gre at b ro w n ey es an d sp la sh ed d ow n h er fro nt, ju st as th ey h ad d one at th e
Quid ditc h W orld C up.
“O h d ear,” s a id H erm io ne. S he a n d R on h ad f o llo w ed H arry a n d D obby to
th e e n d o f t h e k itc h en . “ W in ky, d on't c ry , p le ase d on't … ”
But W in ky c rie d h ard er th an e v er. D obby, o n th e o th er h an d, b eam ed u p a t
Harry .
“W ould H arry P otte r lik e a c u p o f te a?” h e s q ueak ed lo udly , o ver W in ky's
so bs.
“E r— yeah , o kay,” s a id H arry .
In sta n tly , ab out six h ouse -e lv es cam e tr o ttin g u p b eh in d h im , b earin g a

la rg e s ilv er tr a y la d en w ith a te ap ot, c u ps f o r H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne, a m ilk
ju g, a n d a l a rg e p la te o f b is c u its .
“G ood se rv ic e!” R on sa id , in an im pre sse d v oic e. H erm io ne fro w ned at
him , b ut t h e e lv es a ll l o oked d elig hte d ; t h ey b ow ed v ery l o w a n d r e tr e ate d .
“H ow lo ng h av e y ou b een h ere , D obby?” H arry a sk ed a s D obby h an ded
aro und t h e t e a.
“O nly a w eek . H arry P otte r, s ir !” s a id D obby h ap pily . “ D obby c am e to s e e
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore , s ir. Y ou s e e, s ir , it is v ery d if f ic u lt fo r a h ouse -e lf w ho
has b een d is m is se d t o g et a n ew p ositio n, s ir , v ery d if f ic u lt i n deed — ”
At th is , W in ky how le d ev en hard er, her sq uash ed -to m ato of a nose
drib blin g a ll d ow n h er f ro nt, t h ough s h e m ad e n o e ff o rt t o s te m t h e f lo w .
“D obby h as tr a v ele d th e c o untr y fo r tw o w hole y ears , sir , tr y in g to fin d
work !” D obby sq ueak ed . “ B ut D obby h asn 't fo und w ork , sir , b ecau se D obby
wan ts p ay in g n ow !”
The house -e lv es all aro und th e kitc h en , w ho had been lis te n in g an d
watc h in g w ith in te re st, a ll lo oked a w ay a t th ese w ord s, a s th ough D obby h ad
sa id s o m eth in g r u de a n d e m barra ssin g. H erm io ne, h ow ev er, s a id , “ G ood f o r y ou,
Dobby!”
“T han k y ou, m is s!” s a id D obby, g rin nin g t o oth ily a t h er. “ B ut m ost w iz ard s
doesn 't w an t a h ouse -e lf w ho w an ts p ay in g, m is s. 'T hat's n ot th e p oin t o f a
house -e lf ,' th ey s a y s, a n d th ey s la m med th e d oor in D obby's fa ce! D obby lik es
work , b ut h e w an ts to w ear c lo th es a n d h e w an ts to b e p aid . H arry P otte r…
Dobby l ik es b ein g f re e!”
The H ogw arts h ouse -e lv es h ad n ow sta rte d e d gin g a w ay fro m D obby, a s
th ough he w ere carry in g so m eth in g co nta g io us. W in ky, how ev er, re m ain ed
where s h e w as, t h ough t h ere w as a d efin ite i n cre ase i n t h e v olu m e o th er c ry in g.
“A nd th en , H arry P otte r, D obby g oes to v is it W in ky, a n d fin ds o ut W in ky
has b een f re ed t o o, s ir !” s a id D obby d elig hte d ly .
At th is , W in ky f lu ng h ers e lf f o rw ard o ff h er s to ol a n d la y f a ce-d ow n o n th e
fla g ged s to ne f lo or, b eatin g h er tin y f is ts u pon it a n d p ositiv ely s c re am in g w ith
mis e ry . H erm io ne h astily d ro pped d ow n to h er k nees b esid e h er a n d tr ie d to
co m fo rt h er, b ut n oth in g s h e s a id m ad e t h e s lig hte st d if f e re n ce. D obby c o ntin ued
with h is s to ry , s h outin g s h rilly o ver W in ky's s c re ech es.
“A nd th en D obby h ad th e id ea. H arry P otte r, s ir ! 'W hy d oesn 't D obby a n d
Win ky fin d w ork to geth er? ' D obby s a y s. 'W here is th ere e n ough w ork fo r tw o
house -e lv es? ' sa y s W in ky. A nd D obby th in ks, an d it co m es to him , sir !
Hogw arts ! S o D obby a n d W in ky c am e to se e P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore , sir , a n d
Pro fe sso r D um ble d ore t o ok u s o n!”
Dobby b eam ed v ery b rig htly , a n d h ap py t e ars w elle d i n h is e y es a g ain .

“A nd P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore s a y s h e w ill p ay D obby, s ir , if D obby w an ts
pay in g! A nd s o D obby is a fre e e lf , s ir , a n d D obby g ets a G alle o n a w eek a n d
one d ay o ff a m onth !”
“T hat's n ot v ery m uch !” H erm io ne s h oute d in dig nan tly f ro m th e f lo or, o ver
Win ky's c o ntin ued s c re am in g a n d f is t- b eatin g.
“P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore o ff e re d D obby te n G alle o ns a w eek , a n d w eek en ds
off ,” sa id D obby, su dden ly g iv in g a little sh iv er, a s th ough th e p ro sp ect o f so
much le is u re a n d ric h es w ere frig hte n in g, “ b ut D obby b eat h im d ow n, m is s…
Dobby lik es fre ed om , m is s, b ut h e is n 't w an tin g to o m uch , m is s, h e lik es w ork
bette r.”
“A nd h ow m uch is P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore p ay in g y ou, W in ky?” H erm io ne
ask ed k in dly .
If sh e h ad th ought th is w ould c h eer u p W in ky, sh e w as w ild ly m is ta k en .
Win ky d id s to p c ry in g, b ut w hen s h e s a t u p s h e w as g la rin g a t H erm io ne t h ro ugh
her m assiv e b ro w n e y es, h er w hole f a ce s o ppin g w et a n d s u dden ly f u rio us.
“W in ky i s a d is g ra ced e lf , b ut W in ky i s n ot y et g ettin g p aid !” s h e s q ueak ed .
“W in ky i s n ot s u nk s o l o w a s t h at! W in ky i s p ro perly a sh am ed o f b ein g f re ed !”
“A sh am ed ?” sa id H erm io ne bla n kly . “B ut— Win ky, co m e on! It's M r.
Cro uch w ho s h ould b e a sh am ed , n ot y ou! Y ou d id n't d o a n yth in g w ro ng, h e w as
re ally h orrib le t o y ou— ”
But a t th ese w ord s, W in ky c la p ped h er h an ds o ver th e h ole s in h er h at,
fla tte n in g h er e ars s o th at s h e c o uld n't h ear a w ord , a n d s c re ech ed , “ Y ou is n ot
in su ltin g m y m aste r, m is s! Y ou is n ot in su ltin g M r. C ro uch ! M r. C ro uch is a
good w iz ard , m is s! M r. C ro uch i s r ig ht t o s a ck b ad W in ky!”
“W in ky is hav in g tr o uble ad ju stin g, H arry Potte r,” sq ueak ed D obby
co nfid en tia lly . “ W in ky fo rg ets s h e is n ot b ound to M r. C ro uch a n ym ore ; s h e is
allo w ed t o s p eak h er m in d n ow , b ut s h e w on't d o i t.”
“C an 't h ouse -e lv es sp eak th eir m in ds ab out th eir m aste rs , th en ?” H arry
ask ed .
“O h n o, sir , n o,” sa id D obby, lo okin g su dden ly se rio us. “ 'T is p art o f th e
house -e lf 's en sla v em en t, sir. W e k eep s th eir se cre ts an d o ur sile n ce, sir. W e
uphold s th e f a m ily 's h onor, a n d w e n ev er s p eak s ill o f th em — th ough P ro fe sso r
Dum ble d ore t o ld D obby h e d oes n ot i n sis t u pon t h is . P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore s a id
we i s f re e t o — to -”
Dobby lo oked su dden ly n erv ous an d b eck oned H arry clo se r. H arry b en t
fo rw ard . D obby w his p ere d , “H e sa id w e is fre e to call h im a— a b arm y o ld
co dger i f w e l ik es, s ir !”
Dobby g av e a f rig hte n ed s o rt o f g ig gle .
“B ut D obby is n ot w an tin g to , H arry P otte r,” h e sa id , ta lk in g n orm ally

ag ain , a n d sh ak in g h is h ead so th at h is e ars fla p ped . “ D obby lik es P ro fe sso r
Dum ble d ore v ery m uch , s ir , a n d is p ro ud to k eep h is s e cre ts a n d o ur s ile n ce f o r
him .”
“B ut y ou c an s a y w hat y ou lik e a b out th e M alf o ys n ow ?” H arry a sk ed h im ,
grin nin g.
A s lig htly f e arfu l l o ok c am e i n to D obby's i m men se e y es.
“D obby— Dobby co uld ,” he sa id doubtf u lly . He sq uare d his sm all
sh ould ers . “ D obby c o uld t e ll H arry P otte r t h at h is o ld m aste rs w ere — were — bad
Dark w iz ard s'. ”
Dobby sto od fo r a m om en t, q uiv erin g a ll o ver, h orro r- s tr u ck b y h is o w n
darin g— th en h e r u sh ed o ver to th e n eare st ta b le a n d b eg an b an gin g h is h ead o n
it v ery h ard , s q uealin g, “ B ad D obby! B ad D obby!”
Harry s e iz ed D obby b y th e b ack o f h is tie a n d p ulle d h im a w ay fro m th e
ta b le .
“T han k y ou. H arry P otte r, th an k y ou,” s a id D obby b re ath le ssly , r u bbin g h is
head .
“Y ou j u st n eed a b it o f p ra ctic e,” H arry s a id .
“P ra ctic e!” sq ueale d W in ky fu rio usly . “Y ou is ought to be ash am ed of
yours e lf , D obby, t a lk in g t h at w ay a b out y our m aste rs !”
“T hey is n 't m y m aste rs a n ym ore , W in ky!” sa id D obby d efia n tly . “ D obby
doesn 't c are w hat t h ey t h in k a n ym ore !”
“O h y ou is a b ad e lf , D obby!” m oan ed W in ky, te ars le ak in g d ow n h er f a ce
once m ore . “M y p oor M r. C ro uch , w hat is h e d oin g w ith out W in ky? H e is
need in g m e, h e is n eed in g m y h elp ! I is lo okin g a fte r th e C ro uch es a ll m y lif e ,
an d m y m oth er is d oin g it b efo re m e, a n d m y g ra n dm oth er is d oin g it b efo re h er
…oh w hat is th ey sa y in g if th ey k new W in ky w as fre ed ? O h th e sh am e, th e
sh am e!” S he b urie d h er f a ce i n h er s k ir t a g ain a n d b aw le d .
“W in ky,” s a id H erm io ne f ir m ly , “ I'm q uite s u re M r. C ro uch i s g ettin g a lo ng
perfe ctly w ell w ith out y ou. W e'v e s e en h im , y ou k now — ”
“Y ou is s e ein g m y m aste r? ” s a id W in ky b re ath le ssly , r a is in g h er te ars ta in ed
fa ce o ut o f h er s k ir t o nce m ore a n d g ogglin g a t H erm io ne. “ Y ou is s e ein g h im
here a t H ogw arts ? ”
“Y es,” sa id H erm io ne, “ h e a n d M r. B ag m an a re ju dges in th e T riw iz ard
Tourn am en t.”
“M r. B ag m an c o m es to o?” s q ueak ed W in ky, a n d to H arry 's g re at s u rp ris e
(a n d R on's a n d H erm io ne's to o, b y th e lo oks o n th eir fa ces), s h e lo oked a n gry
ag ain . “ M r. B ag m an is a b ad w iz ard ! A v ery b ad w iz ard ! M y m aste r is n 't lik in g
him , o h n o, n ot a t a ll! ”
“B ag m an — bad ?” s a id H arry .

“O h y es,” W in ky sa id , n oddin g h er h ead fu rio usly , “ M y m aste r is te llin g
Win ky so m e th in gs! B ut W in ky is not sa y in g… W in ky— Win ky keep s her
maste r's s e cre ts … ”
She d is so lv ed y et a g ain in te ars ; th ey c o uld h ear h er s o bbin g in to h er s k ir t,
“P oor m aste r, p oor m aste r, n o W in ky t o h elp h im n o m ore !”
They c o uld n't g et a n oth er s e n sib le w ord o ut o f W in ky. T hey le ft h er to h er
cry in g a n d f in is h ed t h eir t e a, w hile D obby c h atte d h ap pily a b out h is l if e a s a f re e
elf a n d h is p la n s f o r h is w ag es.
“D obby is g oin g to b uy a sw eate r n ex t, H arry P otte r!” h e sa id h ap pily ,
poin tin g a t h is b are c h est,
“T ell y ou w hat, D obby,” s a id R on, w ho s e em ed t o h av e t a k en a g re at l ik in g
to th e e lf , “ I'l l g iv e y ou th e o ne m y m um k nits m e th is C hris tm as, I a lw ay s g et
one f ro m h er. Y ou d on't m in d m aro on, d o y ou?”
Dobby w as d elig hte d .
“W e m ig ht h av e t o s h rin k i t a b it t o f it y ou,” R on t o ld h im , “ b ut i t'l l g o w ell
with y our t e a c o zy.”
As th ey p re p are d to ta k e th eir le av e, m an y o f th e s u rro undin g e lv es p re sse d
in u pon th em , o ff e rin g s n ack s to ta k e b ack u psta ir s . H erm io ne re fu se d , w ith a
pain ed lo ok a t th e w ay th e e lv es k ep t b ow in g a n d c u rts y in g, b ut H arry a n d R on
lo ad ed t h eir p ock ets w ith c re am c ak es a n d p ie s.
“T han ks a lo t! ” H arry s a id to th e e lv es, w ho h ad a ll c lu ste re d a ro und th e
door t o s a y g ood n ig ht. “ S ee y ou, D obby!”
“H arry P otte r… can D obby co m e an d se e y ou so m etim es, sir ? ” D obby
ask ed t e n ta tiv ely .
“ 'C ours e y ou c an ,” s a id H arry , a n d D obby b eam ed .
“Y ou k now w hat? ” sa id R on, o nce h e, H erm io ne, a n d H arry h ad le ft th e
kitc h en s b eh in d a n d w ere c lim bin g th e s te p s in to th e e n tr a n ce h all a g ain . “ A ll
th ese y ears I 'v e b een r e ally im pre sse d w ith F re d a n d G eo rg e, n ic k in g f o od f ro m
th e k itc h en s— well, it's n ot ex actly d if f ic u lt, is it? T hey can 't w ait to g iv e it
aw ay !”
“I th in k th is is th e b est th in g th at c o uld h av e h ap pen ed to th ose e lv es, y ou
know ,” s a id H erm io ne, le ad in g th e w ay b ack u p th e m arb le s ta ir c ase . “ D obby
co m in g to w ork h ere , I m ean . T he o th er e lv es w ill s e e h ow h ap py h e is , b ein g
fre e, a n d s lo w ly i t'l l d aw n o n t h em t h at t h ey w an t t h at t o o!”
“L et's h ope t h ey d on't l o ok t o o c lo se ly a t W in ky,” s a id H arry .
“O h sh e'l l c h eer u p,” sa id H erm io ne, th ough sh e so unded a b it d oubtf u l.
“O nce t h e s h ock 's w orn o ff , a n d s h e's g ot u se d t o H ogw arts , s h e'l l s e e h ow m uch
bette r o ff s h e i s w ith out t h at C ro uch m an .”
“S he s e em s to lo ve h im ,” s a id R on th ic k ly ( h e h ad ju st s ta rte d o n a c re am

cak e).
“D oesn 't th in k m uch o f B ag m an , th ough, d oes s h e?” s a id H arry . “ W onder
what C ro uch s a y s a t h om e a b out h im ?”
“P ro bab ly s a y s h e's n ot a v ery g ood H ead o f D ep artm en t,” s a id H erm io ne,
“an d l e t's f a ce i t… h e's g ot a p oin t, h asn 't h e?”
“I'd still ra th er w ork fo r him th an old C ro uch ,” sa id R on. “A t le ast
Bag m an 's g ot a s e n se o f h um or.”
“D on't l e t P erc y h ear y ou s a y in g t h at,” H erm io ne s a id , s m ilin g s lig htly .
“Y eah , w ell, P erc y w ould n't w an t to w ork fo r an yone w ith a se n se of
hum or, w ould h e?” s a id R on, n ow s ta rtin g o n a c h oco la te e cla ir. “ P erc y w ould n't
re co gniz e a j o ke i f i t d an ced n ak ed i n f ro nt o f h im w earin g D obby's t e a c o zy.”

C H APT ER T W EN TY-T W O
T H E U NEX PE C TED T A SK
Potte r! W easle y ! W ill y ou p ay a tte n tio n?”
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all's ir rita te d v oic e cra ck ed lik e a w hip th ro ugh th e
T ra n sfig ura tio n c la ss o n T hurs d ay, a n d H arry a n d R on b oth ju m ped a n d lo oked
u p.
It w as th e e n d o f th e le sso n; th ey h ad f in is h ed th eir w ork ; th e g uin ea f o w l
t h ey h ad b een c h an gin g in to g uin ea p ig s h ad b een s h ut a w ay in a la rg e c ag e o n
P ro fe sso r M cG onag all's d esk ( N ev ille 's s till h ad f e ath ers ); t h ey h ad c o pie d d ow n
t h eir h om ew ork fro m th e b la ck board (“ D esc rib e, w ith e x am ple s, th e w ay s in
w hic h T ra n sfo rm in g S pells m ust b e ad ap te d w hen p erfo rm in g C ro ss-S pecie s
S w itc h es" } . T he b ell w as d ue to rin g a t a n y m om en t, a n d H arry a n d R on, w ho
h ad b een h av in g a s w ord f ig ht w ith a c o uple o f F re d a n d G eo rg e's f a k e w an ds a t
t h e b ack o f th e c la ss, lo oked u p, R on h old in g a tin p arro t a n d H arry , a ru bber
h ad dock .
“N ow t h at P otte r a n d W easle y h av e b een k in d e n ough t o a ct t h eir a g e,” s a id
P ro fe sso r M cG onag all, w ith a n a n gry lo ok a t th e p air o f th em a s th e h ead o f
H arry 's h ad dock d ro oped a n d fe ll s ile n tly to th e flo or— Ron's p arro t's b eak h ad
s e v ere d i t m om en ts b efo re — ”I h av e s o m eth in g t o s a y t o y ou a ll.
“T he Yule Ball is ap pro ach in g— a tr a d itio nal part of th e Triw iz ard
T ourn am en t a n d a n o pportu nity f o r u s to s o cia liz e w ith o ur f o re ig n g uests . N ow ,
t h e b all w ill b e o pen o nly to f o urth y ears a n d a b ove— alth ough y ou m ay in vite a
y ounger s tu den t i f y ou w is h — ”
Lav en der B ro w n le t o ut a s h rill g ig gle . P arv ati P atil n udged h er h ard in th e
r ib s, h er fa ce w ork in g fu rio usly as sh e to o fo ught n ot to g ig gle . T hey b oth
l o oked aro und at H arry , P ro fe sso r M cG onag all ig nore d th em , w hic h H arry
t h ought w as d is tin ctly u nfa ir , a s s h e h ad j u st t o ld o ff h im a n d R on.
“D re ss r o bes w ill b e w orn ,” P ro fe sso r M cG onag all c o ntin ued , “ an d t h e b all
w ill s ta rt a t e ig ht o 'c lo ck o n C hris tm as D ay, fin is h in g a t m id nig ht in th e G re at
H all. N ow t h en — ”
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all s ta re d d elib era te ly a ro und t h e c la ss.
“T he Y ule B all is o f c o urs e a c h an ce f o r u s a ll to — er— le t o ur h air d ow n,”
s h e s a id , i n a d is a p pro vin g v oic e.
Lav en der g ig gle d h ard er th an e v er, w ith h er h an d p re sse d h ard a g ain st h er
m outh to s tif le th e s o und. H arry c o uld s e e w hat w as fu nny th is tim e: P ro fe sso r
M cG onag all, w ith h er h air in a tig ht b un, lo oked a s th ough s h e h ad n ev er le t h er

hair d ow n i n a n y s e n se .
“B ut th at d oes N OT m ean ,” P ro fe sso r M cG onag all w en t o n, “ th at w e w ill
be r e la x in g th e s ta n dard s o f b eh av io r w e e x pect f ro m H ogw arts s tu den ts . I w ill
be m ost s e rio usly d is p le ase d if a G ry ff in dor s tu den t e m barra sse s th e s c h ool in
an y w ay.”
The bell ra n g, an d th ere w as th e usu al sc u ff le of activ ity as ev ery one
pack ed t h eir b ag s a n d s w ung t h em o nto t h eir s h ould ers .
Pro fe sso r M cG onag all calle d ab ove th e nois e , “P otte r— a w ord , if you
ple ase .”
Assu m in g th is had so m eth in g to do w ith his head le ss ru bber had dock ,
Harry p ro ceed ed g lo om ily to th e te ach er's d esk . P ro fe sso r M cG onag all w aite d
until th e re st o f th e c la ss h ad g one, a n d th en s a id , “ P otte r, th e c h am pio ns a n d
th eir p artn ers — ”
“W hat p artn ers ? ” s a id H arry .
Pro fe so r M cG onag all lo oked s u sp ic io usly a t h im , a s th ough s h e th ought h e
was t r y in g t o b e f u nny.
“Y our p artn ers fo r th e Y ule B all, P otte r,” sh e sa id co ld ly . “Y our d an ce
partn ers .”
Harry 's i n sid es s e em ed t o c u rl u p a n d s h riv el.
“D an ce partn ers ? ” H e fe lt him se lf goin g re d . “I don't dan ce,” he sa id
quic k ly .
“O h y es, y ou d o,” sa id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all ir rita b ly . “ T hat's w hat I'm
te llin g y ou. T ra d itio nally , t h e c h am pio ns a n d t h eir p artn ers o pen t h e b all.”
Harry had a su dden m en ta l im ag e of him se lf in a to p hat an d ta ils ,
acco m pan ie d b y a g ir l in th e so rt o f frilly d re ss A unt P etu nia a lw ay s w ore to
Uncle V ern on's w ork p artie s.
“I'm n ot d an cin g,” h e s a id .
“It is tr a d itio nal,” s a id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all f ir m ly . “ Y ou a re a H ogw arts
ch am pio n, a n d y ou w ill d o w hat is e x pecte d o f y ou a s a re p re se n ta tiv e o f th e
sc h ool. S o m ak e s u re y ou g et y ours e lf a p artn er, P otte r.”
“B ut- I d on't - ”
“Y ou h eard m e, P otte r,” s a id P ro fe sso r M cG onag all in a v ery fin al s o rt o f
way.
A w eek a g o. H arry w ould h av e s a id f in din g a p artn er f o r a d an ce w ould b e
a c in ch c o m pare d to ta k in g o n a H ungaria n H orn ta il. B ut n ow th at h e h ad d one
th e l a tte r, a n d w as f a cin g t h e p ro sp ect o f a sk in g a g ir l t o t h e b all, h e t h ought h e'd
ra th er h av e a n oth er r o und w ith t h e d ra g on.
Harry h ad n ev er k now n s o m an y p eo ple to p ut th eir n am es d ow n to s ta y a t
Hogw arts fo r C hris tm as; h e a lw ay s d id , o f c o urs e , b ecau se th e a lte rn ativ e w as

usu ally g oin g b ack to P riv et D riv e, b ut h e h ad a lw ay s b een v ery m uch in th e
min ority b efo re n ow . T his y ear, h ow ev er, e v ery one in th e f o urth y ear a n d a b ove
se em ed to b e sta y in g, a n d th ey a ll se em ed to H arry to b e o bse sse d w ith th e
co m in g b all— or a t le ast a ll th e g ir ls w ere , a n d it w as a m azin g h ow m an y g ir ls
Hogw arts s u dden ly s e em ed t o h old ; h e h ad n ev er q uite n otic ed t h at b efo re . G ir ls
gig glin g a n d w his p erin g in th e c o rrid ors , g ir ls s h rie k in g w ith la u ghte r a s b oys
passe d th em , g ir ls e x cite d ly c o m parin g n ote s o n w hat th ey w ere g oin g to w ear
on C hris tm as n ig ht…
“W hy d o th ey h av e to m ove in p ack s? ” H arry a sk ed R on a s a d ozen o r s o
gir ls w alk ed p ast t h em , s n ig gerin g a n d s ta rin g a t H arry . “ H ow 'r e y ou s u ppose d t o
get o ne o n t h eir o w n t o a sk t h em ?”
“L asso o ne?” R on s u ggeste d . “ G ot a n y i d ea w ho y ou'r e g oin g t o t r y ?”
Harry d id n't a n sw er. H e k new p erfe ctly w ell w hom h e'd lik e to a sk , b ut
work in g u p th e n erv e w as s o m eth in g e ls e … C ho w as a y ear o ld er th an h e w as;
sh e w as v ery p re tty ; sh e w as a v ery g ood Q uid ditc h p la y er, a n d sh e w as a ls o
very p opula r.
Ron s e em ed t o k now w hat w as g oin g o n i n sid e H arry 's h ead .
“L is te n , y ou'r e n ot g oin g to h av e a n y tr o uble . Y ou'r e a c h am pio n. Y ou'v e
ju st b eate n a H ungaria n H orn ta il. I b et t h ey 'l l b e q ueu in g u p t o g o w ith y ou.”
In tr ib ute to th eir re cen tly re p air e d frie n dsh ip , R on h ad k ep t th e b itte rn ess
in h is v oic e to a b are m in im um . M ore o ver, to H arry 's a m azem en t, h e tu rn ed o ut
to b e q uite r ig ht.
A c u rly -h air e d th ir d -y ear H uff le p uff g ir l to w hom H arry h ad n ev er s p oken
in h is lif e a sk ed h im to g o to th e b all w ith h er th e v ery n ex t d ay. H arry w as s o
ta k en a b ack h e s a id n o b efo re h e'd e v en s to pped to c o nsid er th e m atte r. T he g ir l
walk ed o ff lo okin g ra th er h urt, a n d H arry h ad to e n dure D ean 's , S eam us's , a n d
Ron's ta u nts a b out h er a ll th ro ugh H is to ry o f M ag ic . T he fo llo w in g d ay, tw o
more g ir ls a sk ed h im , a s e co nd y ear a n d ( to h is h orro r) a f if th y ear w ho lo oked
as t h ough s h e m ig ht k nock h im o ut i f h e r e fu se d .
“S he w as q uite g ood-lo okin g,” s a id R on f a ir ly , a fte r h e'd s to pped l a u ghin g.
“S he w as a fo ot ta lle r th an m e,” s a id H arry , s till u nnerv ed . “ Im ag in e w hat
I'd l o ok l ik e t r y in g t o d an ce w ith h er.”
Herm io ne's w ord s a b out K ru m k ep t c o m in g b ack to h im . “ T hey o nly lik e
him b ecau se h e's f a m ous!” H arry d oubte d v ery m uch if a n y o f th e g ir ls w ho h ad
ask ed to b e h is p artn er s o f a r w ould h av e w an te d to g o to th e b all w ith h im if h e
had n't b een a s c h ool c h am pio n. T hen h e w ondere d if th is w ould b oth er h im if
Cho a sk ed h im .
On th e w hole . H arry h ad to a d m it th at e v en w ith th e e m barra ssin g p ro sp ect
of o pen in g th e b all b efo re h im , lif e h ad d efin ite ly im pro ved sin ce h e h ad g ot

th ro ugh th e f ir s t ta sk . H e w asn 't a ttr a ctin g n early a s m uch u nple asa n tn ess in th e
co rrid ors a n ym ore , w hic h h e s u sp ecte d h ad a lo t to d o w ith C ed ric — he h ad a n
id ea C ed ric m ig ht h av e t o ld t h e H uff le p uff s t o l e av e H arry a lo ne, i n g ra titu de f o r
Harry 's tip -o ff ab out th e d ra g ons. T here se em ed to b e fe w er S upport C ed ric
Dig gory ! b ad ges a ro und to o. D ra co M alf o y, o f c o urs e , w as still q uotin g R ita
Skeete r's a rtic le to h im a t e v ery p ossib le o pportu nity , b ut h e w as g ettin g fe w er
an d f e w er l a u ghs o ut o f i t— an d j u st t o h eig hte n H arry 's f e elin g o f w ell- b ein g, n o
sto ry a b out H ag rid h ad a p peare d i n t h e D aily P ro phet.
“S he d id n' s e em v ery in t'r e ste d in m ag ic al c re atu re s, te r te ll y eh th e tr u th ,”
Hag rid s a id , w hen H arry , R on, a n d H erm io ne a sk ed h im h ow h is in te rv ie w w ith
Rita S keete r h ad g one d urin g th e la st C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s le sso n o f th e
te rm . T o th eir v ery g re at re lie f, H ag rid h ad g iv en u p o n d ir e ct c o nta ct w ith th e
sk re w ts n ow , a n d t h ey w ere m ere ly s h elte rin g b eh in d h is c ab in t o day, s ittin g a t a
tr e stle ta b le a n d p re p arin g a fre sh se le ctio n o f fo od w ith w hic h to te m pt th e
sk re w ts .
“S he ju s' w an te d m e te r ta lk a b out y ou, H arry ,” H ag rid c o ntin ued in a lo w
voic e. “ W ell, I to ld h er w e'd b een frie n ds sin ce I w en t te r fe tc h y eh fro m th e
Durs le y s. 'N ev er h ad to te ll h im o ff in fo ur y ears ? ' s h e s a id . 'N ev er p la y ed y ou
up in le sso ns, h as h e?' I to ld h er n o, a n s h e d id n' s e em h ap py a t a ll. Y eh 'd th in k
sh e w an te d m e t o s a y y eh w ere h orrib le , H arry .”
“ 'C ours e s h e d id ,” s a id H arry , th ro w in g lu m ps o f d ra g on liv er in to a la rg e
meta l b ow l a n d p ic k in g u p h is k nif e to c u t s o m e m ore . “ S he c an 't k eep w ritin g
ab out w hat a t r a g ic l ittle h ero I a m , i t'l l g et b orin g.”
“S he w an ts a n ew a n gle , H ag rid ,” s a id R on w is e ly a s h e s h elle d s a la m an der
eg gs. “ Y ou w ere s u ppose d t o s a y H arry 's a m ad d elin quen t! ”
“B ut h e's n ot! ” s a id H ag rid , l o okin g g en uin ely s h ock ed .
“S he s h ould 'v e in te rv ie w ed S nap e,” s a id H arry g rim ly . “ H e'd g iv e h er th e
goods o n m e a n y d ay. 'P otte r h as b een c ro ssin g l in es e v er s in ce h e f ir s t a rriv ed a t
th is s c h ool… '”
“S aid th at, d id h e?” s a id H ag rid , w hile R on a n d H erm io ne la u ghed . “ W ell,
yeh m ig ht'v e b en t a f e w r u le s. H arry , b u' y eh 'r e a ll r ig h' r e ally , a re n ' y ou?”
“C heers , H ag rid ,” s a id H arry , g rin nin g.
“Y ou c o m in g t o t h is b all t h in g o n C hris tm as D ay, H ag rid ?” s a id R on.
“T hough' I m ig ht lo ok in o n it, y eah ,” sa id H ag rid g ru ff ly . “ S hould b e a
good d o, I re ck on. Y ou'l l b e o pen in th e d an cin ', w on y eh , H arry ? W ho'r e y ou
ta k in '? ”
“N o o ne, y et,” sa id H arry , fe elin g h im se lf g oin g re d a g ain . H ag rid d id n't
purs u e t h e s u bje ct.
The la st w eek o f te rm b ecam e in cre asin gly b ois te ro us as it p ro gre sse d .

Rum ors a b out t h e Y ule B all w ere f ly in g e v ery w here , t h ough H arry d id n't b elie v e
half o f t h em — fo r i n sta n ce, t h at D um ble d ore h ad b ought e ig ht h undre d b arre ls o f
mulle d m ead f ro m M ad am R osm erta . I t s e em ed to b e f a ct, h ow ev er, th at h e h ad
booked th e W eir d S is te rs . E xactly w ho o r w hat th e W eir d S is te rs w ere H arry
did n't k now , n ev er h av in g h ad a ccess t o a w iz ard 's w ir e le ss, b ut h e d ed uced f ro m
th e w ild ex cite m en t of th ose w ho had gro w n up lis te n in g to th e W WN
(W iz ard in g W ir e le ss N etw ork ) t h at t h ey w ere a v ery f a m ous m usic al g ro up.
Som e o f th e te ach ers , lik e little P ro fe sso r F litw ic k , g av e u p tr y in g to te ach
th em m uch w hen t h eir m in ds w ere s o c le arly e ls e w here ; h e a llo w ed t h em t o p la y
gam es in h is le sso n o n W ed nesd ay, a n d s p en t m ost o f it ta lk in g to H arry a b out
th e p erfe ct S um monin g C harm
Harry h ad u se d d urin g th e fir s t ta sk o f th e T riw iz ard T ourn am en t. O th er
te ach ers w ere n ot s o g en ero us. N oth in g w ould e v er d efle ct P ro fe sso r B in ns, f o r
ex am ple , fro m p lo w in g o n th ro ugh h is n ote s o n g oblin re b ellio ns— as B in ns
had n't l e t h is o w n d eath s ta n d i n t h e w ay o f c o ntin uin g t o t e ach , t h ey s u ppose d a
sm all th in g lik e C hris tm as w asn 't g oin g to p ut h im o ff . It w as a m azin g h ow h e
co uld m ak e ev en b lo ody an d v ic io us g oblin rio ts so und as b orin g as P erc y s
cau ld ro n-b otto m r e p ort. P ro fe sso rs M cG onag all a n d M oody k ep t th em w ork in g
until th e v ery la st s e co nd o f th eir c la sse s to o, a n d S nap e, o f c o urs e , w ould n o
so oner le t th em p la y g am es in c la ss th an a d opt H arry . S ta rin g n astily a ro und a t
th em a ll, h e in fo rm ed th em th at h e w ould b e te stin g th em o n p ois o n a n tid ote s
durin g t h e l a st l e sso n o f t h e t e rm .
“E vil, h e is ,” R on s a id b itte rly th at n ig ht in th e G ry ff in dor c o m mon r o om .
“S prin gin g a te st o n u s o n th e la st d ay. R uin in g th e la st b it o f te rm w ith a w hole
lo ad o f s tu dyin g.”
“M mm… you'r e not ex actly str a in in g yours e lf , th ough, are you?” sa id
Herm io ne, lo okin g at h im o ver th e to p o f h er P otio ns n ote s. R on w as b usy
build in g a c ard c astle o ut o f h is E xplo din g S nap p ack — a m uch m ore in te re stin g
pastim e th an w ith M uggle c ard s, b ecau se o f th e c h an ce th at th e w hole th in g
would b lo w u p a t a n y s e co nd.
“It's C hris tm as, H erm io ne,” s a id H arry l a zily ; h e w as r e re ad in g F ly in g w ith
th e C an nons f o r t h e t e n th t im e i n a n a rm ch air n ear t h e f ir e .
Herm io ne l o oked s e v ere ly o ver a t h im t o o. “ I'd h av e t h ought y ou'd b e d oin g
so m eth in g c o nstr u ctiv e, H arry , e v en i f y ou d on't w an t t o l e arn y our a n tid ote s!”
“L ik e w hat? ” H arry s a id a s h e w atc h ed J o ey J e n kin s o f th e C an nons b elt a
Blu dger t o w ard a B ally castle B ats C hase r.
“T hat e g g!” H erm io ne h is se d .
“C om e o n, H erm io ne, I 'v e g ot t ill F eb ru ary t h e t w en ty -fo urth ,” H arry s a id .
He h ad p ut th e g old en e g g u psta ir s in h is tr u nk a n d h ad n't o pen ed it s in ce

th e c ele b ra tio n p arty a fte r t h e f ir s t t a sk . T here w ere s till t w o a n d a h alf m onth s t o
go u ntil h e n eed ed t o k now w hat a ll t h e s c re ech y w ailin g m ean t, a fte r a ll.
“B ut it m ig ht ta k e w eek s to w ork it o ut! ” s a id H erm io ne. “ Y ou'r e g oin g to
lo ok a r e al i d io t i f e v ery one e ls e k now s w hat t h e n ex t t a sk i s a n d y ou d on't ! ”
“L eav e h im a lo ne, H erm io ne, h e's e arn ed a b it o f a b re ak ,” s a id R on, a n d h e
pla ced t h e l a st t w o c ard s o n t o p o f t h e c astle a n d t h e w hole l o t b le w u p, s in gein g
his e y eb ro w s.
“N ic e l o ok, R on … go w ell w ith y our d re ss r o bes, t h at w ill.”
It w as F re d a n d G eo rg e. T hey s a t d ow n a t th e ta b le w ith H arry , R on, a n d
Herm io ne a s R on f e lt h ow m uch d am ag e h ad b een d one.
“R on, c an w e b orro w P ig w id geo n?” G eo rg e a sk ed .
“N o, h e's o ff d eliv erin g a l e tte r,” s a id R on. “ W hy?”
“B ecau se G eo rg e w an ts t o i n vite h im t o t h e b all,” s a id F re d s a rc astic ally .
“B ecau se w e w an t t o s e n d a l e tte r, y ou s tu pid g re at p ra t,” s a id G eo rg e.
“W ho d 'y ou t w o k eep w ritin g t o , e h ?” s a id R on.
“N ose o ut, R on, o r I'l l b urn th at fo r y ou to o,” s a id F re d , w av in g h is w an d
th re ate n in gly . “ S o… y ou l o t g ot d ate s f o r t h e b all y et? ”
“N ope,” s a id R on.
“W ell, y ou'd b ette r h urry u p, m ate , o r a ll th e g ood o nes w ill b e g one,” s a id
Fre d .
“W ho'r e y ou g oin g w ith , t h en ?” s a id R on.
“A ngelin a,” s a id F re d p ro m ptly , w ith out a t r a ce o f e m barra ssm en t.
“W hat? ” s a id R on, t a k en a b ack . “ Y ou'v e a lr e ad y a sk ed h er? ”
“G ood p oin t,” s a id F re d . H e tu rn ed h is h ead a n d c alle d a cro ss th e c o m mon
ro om , “ O i! A ngelin a!”
Angelin a, w ho h ad b een c h attin g w ith A lic ia S pin net n ear th e fir e , lo oked
over a t h im .
“W hat? ” s h e c alle d b ack .
“W an t t o c o m e t o t h e b all w ith m e?”
Angelin a g av e F re d a n a p pra is in g s o rt o f l o ok.
“A ll rig ht, th en ,” sh e sa id , a n d sh e tu rn ed b ack to A lic ia a n d c arrie d o n
ch attin g w ith a b it o f a g rin o n h er f a ce.
“T here y ou g o,” s a id F re d t o H arry a n d R on, “ p ie ce o f c ak e.”
He g ot to h is fe et, y aw nin g, a n d s a id , “ W e'd b ette r u se a s c h ool o w l th en ,
Geo rg e, c o m e o n… ”
They le ft. R on sto pped fe elin g his ey eb ro w s an d lo oked acro ss th e
sm old erin g w re ck o f h is c ard c astle a t H arry .
“W e s h ould g et a m ove o n, y ou k now … a sk s o m eo ne. H e's r ig ht. W e d on't
wan t t o e n d u p w ith a p air o f t r o lls .”

Herm io ne l e t o ut a s p utte r o f i n dig natio n.
“A p air o f… w hat, e x cu se m e?”
“W ell— you k now ,” s a id R on, s h ru ggin g. “ I'd ra th er g o a lo ne th an w ith —
with E lo is e M id gen , s a y.”
“H er a cn e's l o ad s b ette r l a te ly — an d s h e's r e ally n ic e!”
“H er n ose i s o ff -c en te r,” s a id R on.
“O h I s e e,” H erm io ne s a id , b ris tlin g. “ S o b asic ally , y ou'r e g oin g to ta k e th e
best- lo okin g g ir l w ho'l l h av e y ou, e v en i f s h e's c o m ple te ly h orrib le ?”
“E r— yeah , t h at s o unds a b out r ig ht,” s a id R on.
“I'm g oin g to b ed ,” H erm io ne s n ap ped , a n d s h e s w ep t o ff to w ard th e g ir ls '
sta ir c ase w ith out a n oth er w ord .
The H ogw arts s ta ff , d em onstr a tin g a c o ntin ued d esir e t o i m pre ss t h e v is ito rs
fro m B eau xbato ns a n d D urm str a n g, s e em ed d ete rm in ed to s h ow th e c astle a t its
best t h is C hris tm as. W hen t h e d eco ra tio ns w en t u p. H arry n otic ed t h at t h ey w ere
th e m ost s tu nnin g h e h ad y et s e en in sid e t h e s c h ool. E verla stin g ic ic le s h ad b een
atta ch ed t o t h e b an is te rs o f t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase ; t h e u su al t w elv e C hris tm as t r e es
in th e G re at H all w ere b ed eck ed w ith e v ery th in g f ro m lu m in ou s h olly b errie s to
re al, h ootin g, g old en o w ls , a n d th e s u its o f a rm or h ad a ll b een b ew itc h ed to s in g
caro ls w hen ev er a n yone p asse d th em . It w as q uite s o m eth in g to h ear “ 0 C om e,
All Y e F aith fu l” s u ng b y a n e m pty h elm et t h at o nly k new h alf t h e w ord s. S ev era l
tim es, F ilc h th e c are ta k er h ad to e x tr a ct P eev es f ro m in sid e th e a rm or, w here h e
had ta k en to h id in g, fillin g in th e g ap s in th e so ngs w ith ly ric s o f h is o w n
in ven tio n, a ll o f w hic h w ere v ery r u de.
And s till. H arry h ad n't a sk ed C ho t o t h e b all. H e a n d R on w ere g ettin g v ery
nerv ous n ow , th ough a s H arry p oin te d o ut, R on w ould lo ok m uch le ss stu pid
th an h e w ould w ith out a p artn er;
Harry w as s u ppose d t o b e s ta rtin g t h e d an cin g w ith t h e o th er c h am pio ns.
“I s u ppose th ere 's a lw ay s M oan in g M yrtle ,” h e s a id g lo om ily , re fe rrin g to
th e g host w ho h au nte d t h e g ir ls ' t o ile ts o n t h e s e co nd f lo or.
“H arry — we'v e ju st g ot to g rit o ur te eth a n d d o it,” sa id R on o n F rid ay
morn in g, in a to ne th at su ggeste d th ey w ere pla n nin g th e sto rm in g of an
im pre g nab le fo rtr e ss. “ W hen w e g et b ack to th e c o m mon ro om to nig ht, w e'l l
both h av e p artn ers — ag re ed ?”
“E r… o kay,” s a id H arry .
But ev ery tim e he glim pse d C ho th at day — durin g bre ak , an d th en
lu nch tim e, a n d o nce o n th e w ay to H is to ry o f M ag ic — sh e w as s u rro unded b y
frie n ds. D id n't s h e e v er g o a n yw here a lo ne? C ould h e p erh ap s a m bush h er a s s h e
was g oin g i n to a b ath ro om ? B ut n o— sh e e v en s e em ed t o g o t h ere w ith a n e sc o rt
of f o ur o r f iv e g ir ls . Y et i f h e d id n't d o i t s o on, s h e w as b ound t o h av e b een a sk ed

by s o m eb ody e ls e .
He fo und it h ard to c o ncen tr a te o n S nap e's P otio ns te st, a n d c o nse q uen tly
fo rg ot to a d d th e k ey in gre d ie n t— a b ezo ar— mean in g th at h e re ceiv ed b otto m
mark s. H e d id n't c are , t h ough; h e w as t o o b usy s c re w in g u p h is c o ura g e f o r w hat
he w as a b out to d o. W hen th e b ell r a n g, h e g ra b bed h is b ag , a n d h urrie d to th e
dungeo n d oor.
“I'l l m eet y ou a t d in ner,” h e s a id to R on a n d H erm io ne, a n d h e d ash ed o ff
upsta ir s .
He'd ju st h av e to a sk C ho f o r a p riv ate w ord , th at w as a ll… H e h urrie d o ff
th ro ugh th e p ack ed c o rrid ors lo okin g fo r h er, a n d (ra th er so oner th an h e h ad
ex pecte d ) h e f o und h er, e m erg in g f ro m a D efe n se A gain st t h e D ark A rts l e sso n.
“E r— Cho? C ould I h av e a w ord w ith y ou?”
Gig glin g sh ould b e m ad e ille g al. H arry th ought fu rio usly , a s a ll th e g ir ls
aro und C ho s ta rte d d oin g it. S he d id n't , th ough. S he s a id , “ O kay,” a n d f o llo w ed
him o ut o f e ars h ot o th er c la ssm ate s.
Harry t u rn ed t o l o ok a t h er a n d h is s to m ach g av e a w eir d l u rc h a s t h ough h e
had m is se d a s te p g oin g d ow nsta ir s .
“E r,” h e s a id .
He c o uld n't a sk h er. H e c o uld n't . B ut h e h ad to . C ho s to od th ere lo okin g
puzzle d , w atc h in g h im . T he w ord s cam e o ut b efo re H arry h ad q uite g ot h is
to ngue a ro und t h em .
“W an goballw im e?”
“S orry ?” s a id C ho.
“D 'y ou— d'y ou w an t to g o to th e b all w ith m e?” sa id H arry . W hy d id h e
hav e t o g o r e d n ow ? W hy?
“O h!” s a id C ho, a n d s h e w en t r e d t o o. “ O h H arry , I 'm r e ally s o rry ,” a n d s h e
tr u ly l o oked i t. “ I'v e a lr e ad y s a id I 'l l g o w ith s o m eo ne e ls e .”
“O h,” s a id H arry .
It w as o dd; a m om en t b efo re h is in sid es h ad b een w rith in g lik e s n ak es, b ut
su dden ly h e d id n't s e em t o h av e a n y i n sid es a t a ll.
“O h o kay,” h e s a id , “ n o p ro ble m .”
“I'm r e ally s o rry ,” s h e s a id a g ain .
“T hat's o kay,” s a id H arry .
They s to od t h ere l o okin g a t e ach o th er, a n d t h en C ho s a id , “ W ell- ”
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry .
“W ell, 'b ye,” s a id C ho, s till v ery r e d . S he w alk ed a w ay.
Harry c alle d a fte r h er, b efo re h e c o uld s to p h im se lf .
“W ho'r e y ou g oin g w ith ?”
“O h— Ced ric ,” s h e s a id . “ C ed ric D ig gory .”

“O h r ig ht,” s a id H arry .
His in sid es h ad c o m e b ack a g ain . I t f e lt a s th ough th ey h ad b een f ille d w ith
le ad i n t h eir a b se n ce.
Com ple te ly fo rg ettin g ab out din ner, he walk ed slo w ly back up to
Gry ff in dor T ow er, C ho's v oic e ech oin g in h is ears w ith ev ery ste p h e to ok.
“C ed ric — Ced ric D ig gory .” H e h ad b een s ta rtin g to q uite lik e C ed ric — pre p are d
to overlo ok th e fa ct th at he had once beate n him at Q uid ditc h , an d w as
han dso m e, an d popula r, an d nearly ev ery one's fa v orite ch am pio n. N ow he
su dden ly re aliz ed th at C ed ric w as in fa ct a u se le ss p re tty b oy w ho d id n't h av e
en ough b ra in s t o f ill a n e g gcu p.
“F air y lig hts ,” he sa id dully to th e F at L ad y— th e passw ord had been
ch an ged t h e p re v io us d ay.
“Y es, in deed , d ear!” sh e tr ille d , str a ig hte n in g h er n ew tin se l h air b an d a s
sh e s w ung f o rw ard t o a d m it h im .
Ente rin g th e c o m mon ro om , H arry lo oked a ro und, a n d to h is su rp ris e h e
sa w R on sittin g a sh en -fa ced in a d is ta n t c o rn er. G in ny w as sittin g w ith h im ,
ta lk in g t o h im i n w hat s e em ed t o b e a l o w , s o oth in g v oic e.
“W hat's u p, R on?” s a id H arry , j o in in g t h em .
Ron l o oked u p a t H arry , a s o rt o f b lin d h orro r i n h is f a ce.
“W hy d id I d o i t? ” h e s a id w ild ly . “ I d on't k now w hat m ad e m e d o i t!
“W hat? ” s a id H arry .
“H e— er— ju st a sk ed F le u r D ela co ur t o g o t o t h e b all w ith h im ,” s a id G in ny.
She lo oked a s th ough s h e w as f ig htin g b ack a s m ile , b ut s h e k ep t p attin g R on's
arm s y m path etic ally .
“Y ou w hat? ' s a id H arry .
“I d on't k now w hat m ad e m e d o i t! ” R on g asp ed a g ain . “ W hat w as I p la y in g
at? T here w ere p eo ple — all a ro und— I'v e g one m ad — ev ery one w atc h in g! I w as
ju st w alk in g p ast h er in th e e n tr a n ce h all— sh e w as sta n din g th ere ta lk in g to
Dig gory — an d i t s o rt o f c am e o ver m e— an d I a sk ed h er!”
Ron m oan ed a n d p ut h is fa ce in h is h an ds. H e k ep t ta lk in g, th ough th e
word s w ere b are ly d is tin guis h ab le .
“S he lo oked a t m e lik e I w as a s e a s lu g o r s o m eth in g. D id n't e v en a n sw er.
And t h en — I d unno— I j u st s o rt o f c am e t o m y s e n se s a n d r a n f o r i t.”
“S he's p art v eela ,” s a id H arry . “ Y ou w ere r ig ht— her g ra n dm oth er w as o ne.
It w asn 't y our f a u lt, I b et y ou ju st w alk ed p ast w hen s h e w as tu rn in g o n th e o ld
ch arm fo r D ig gory a n d g ot a b la st o f it— but sh e w as w astin g h er tim e. H e's
goin g w ith C ho C han g.”
Ron l o oked u p.
“I a sk ed h er t o g o w ith m e j u st n ow ,” H arry s a id d ully , “ an d s h e t o ld m e.”

Gin ny h ad s u dden ly s to pped s m ilin g.
“T his is m ad ,” s a id R on. “ W e'r e th e o nly o nes le ft w ho h av en 't g ot a n yone
—well, e x cep t N ev ille . H ey — guess w ho h e a sk ed ? H erm io ne!”
“W hat? ” s a id H arry , c o m ple te ly d is tr a cte d b y t h is s ta rtlin g n ew s.
“Y eah , I k now !” s a id R on, s o m e o f th e c o lo r c o m in g b ack in to h is f a ce a s
he s ta rte d t o l a u gh. “ H e t o ld m e a fte r P otio ns! S aid s h e's a lw ay s b een r e ally n ic e,
help in g h im o ut w ith w ork a n d s tu ff b ut s h e to ld h im s h e w as a lr e ad y g oin g w ith
so m eo ne. H a! A s if ! S he ju st d id n't w an t to g o w ith N ev ille … I m ean , w ho
would ?”
“D on't ! ” s a id G in ny, a n noyed . “ D on't l a u gh— ”
Ju st t h en H erm io ne c lim bed i n t h ro ugh t h e p ortr a it h ole .
“W hy w ere n 't y ou t w o a t d in ner? ” s h e s a id , c o m in g o ver t o j o in t h em .
“B ecau se — oh s h ut u p la u ghin g, y ou tw o— becau se th ey 'v e b oth ju st b een
tu rn ed d ow n b y g ir ls t h ey a sk ed t o t h e b all! ” s a id G in ny.
That s h ut H arry a n d R on u p.
“T han ks a b unch , G in ny,” s a id R on s o urly .
“A ll th e g ood-lo okin g o nes ta k en , R on?” sa id H erm io ne lo ftily . “E lo is e
Mid gen sta rtin g to lo ok q uite p re tty n ow , is sh e? W ell, I'm su re y ou'l l fin d
so m eo ne s o m ew here w ho'l l h av e y ou.”
But R on w as s ta rin g a t H erm io ne a s th ough s u dden ly s e ein g h er in a w hole
new l ig ht.
“H erm io ne, N ev ille 's r ig ht— you a re a g ir l… ”
“O h w ell s p otte d ,” s h e s a id a cid ly .
“W ell— you c an c o m e w ith o ne o f u s!”
“N o, I c an 't ,” s n ap ped H erm io ne.
“O h c o m e o n,” h e s a id im patie n tly , “ w e n eed p artn ers , w e'r e g oin g to lo ok
re ally s tu pid i f w e h av en 't g ot a n y, e v ery one e ls e h as… ”
“I can 't co m e w ith you,” sa id H erm io ne, now blu sh in g, “b ecau se I'm
alr e ad y g oin g w ith s o m eo ne.”
“N o, y ou'r e n ot! ” s a id R on. “ Y ou j u st s a id t h at t o g et r id o f N ev ille !”
“O h d id I ? ” s a id H erm io ne, a n d h er e y es f la sh ed d an gero usly . “ Ju st b ecau se
it's t a k en y ou t h re e y ears t o n otic e, R on, d oesn 't m ean n o o ne e ls e h as s p otte d I 'm
a g ir l! ”
Ron s ta re d a t h er. T hen h e g rin ned a g ain .
“O kay, o kay, w e k now y ou'r e a g ir l,” h e sa id . “ T hat d o? W ill y ou c o m e
now ?”
“I'v e alr e ad y to ld you!” H erm io ne sa id very an grily . “I'm goin g w ith
so m eo ne e ls e !”
And s h e s to rm ed o ff t o w ard t h e g ir ls ' d orm ito rie s a g ain .

“S he's l y in g,” s a id R on f la tly , w atc h in g h er g o.
“S he's n ot,” s a id G in ny q uie tly .
“W ho i s i t t h en ?” s a id R on s h arp ly .
“I'm n ot t e llin g y ou, i t's h er b usin ess,” s a id G in ny.
“R ig ht,” sa id R on, w ho lo oked e x tr e m ely p ut o ut, “ th is is g ettin g stu pid .
Gin ny, y ou c an g o w ith H arry , a n d I 'l l j u st— ”
“I can 't ,” sa id G in ny, an d sh e w en t sc arle t to o. “I'm g oin g w ith — with
Nev ille . H e a sk ed m e w hen H erm io ne s a id n o, a n d I th ought… w ell… I'm n ot
goin g to b e a b le to g o o th erw is e , I 'm n ot in f o urth y ear.” S he lo oked e x tr e m ely
mis e ra b le . “ I th in k I 'l l g o a n d h av e d in ner,” s h e s a id , a n d s h e g ot u p a n d w alk ed
off t o t h e p ortr a it h ole , h er h ead b ow ed .
Ron g oggle d a t H arry .
“W hat's g ot i n to t h em ?” h e d em an ded .
But H arry h ad ju st s e en P arv ati a n d L av en der c o m e in th ro ugh th e p ortr a it
hole . T he t im e h ad c o m e f o r d ra stic a ctio n.
“W ait h ere ,” h e s a id to R on, a n d h e s to od u p, w alk ed s tr a ig ht u p to P arv ati,
an d s a id , “ P arv ati? W ill y ou g o t o t h e b all w ith m e?”
Parv ati w en t in to a fit o f g ig gle s. H arry w aite d fo r th em to su bsid e, h is
fin gers c ro sse d i n t h e p ock et o f h is r o bes.
“Y es, a ll r ig ht t h en ,” s h e s a id f in ally , b lu sh in g f u rio usly .
“T han ks,” s a id H arry , i n r e lie f. “ L av en der— will y ou g o w ith R on?”
“S he's g oin g w ith S eam us,” sa id P arv ati, an d th e p air o f th em g ig gle d
hard er t h an e v er.
Harry s ig hed .
“C an 't y ou t h in k o f a n yone w ho'd g o w ith R on?” h e s a id , l o w erin g h is v oic e
so t h at R on w ould n't h ear.
“W hat a b out H erm io ne G ra n ger? ” s a id P arv ati.
“S he's g oin g w ith s o m eo ne e ls e .”
Parv ati l o oked a sto nis h ed .
“O oooh— who?” s h e s a id k een ly .
Harry s h ru gged . “ N o i d ea,” h e s a id . “ S o w hat a b out R on?”
“W ell… ” sa id P arv ati slo w ly , “ I su ppose m y sis te r m ig ht… P ad m a, y ou
know … in R av en cla w . I 'l l a sk h er i f y ou l ik e.”
“Y eah , t h at w ould b e g re at,” s a id H arry . “ L et m e k now , w ill y ou?”
And h e w en t b ack o ver to R on, f e elin g th at th is b all w as a lo t m ore tr o uble
th an it w as w orth , an d h opin g v ery m uch th at P ad m a P atil's n ose w as d ead
cen te r.

C H APT ER T W EN TY-T H REE
T H E Y ULE B A LL
Desp ite th e v ery h eav y lo ad o f h om ew ork th at th e fo urth y ears h ad b een
g iv en fo r th e h olid ay s. H arry w as in n o m ood to w ork w hen te rm e n ded , a n d
s p en t th e w eek le ad in g u p to C hris tm as e n jo yin g h im se lf a s fu lly a s p ossib le
a lo ng w ith e v ery one e ls e . G ry ff in dor T ow er w as h ard ly le ss c ro w ded n ow th an
d urin g te rm -tim e; it s e em ed to h av e s h ru nk s lig htly to o, a s its in hab ita n ts w ere
b ein g s o m uch r o w die r t h an u su al. F re d a n d G eo rg e h ad h ad a g re at s u ccess w ith
t h eir C an ary C re am s, a n d f o r t h e f ir s t c o uple o f d ay s o f t h e h olid ay s, p eo ple k ep t
b urs tin g i n to f e ath er a ll o ver t h e p la ce. B efo re l o ng, h ow ev er, a ll t h e G ry ff in dors
h ad le arn ed to tr e at fo od a n ybody e ls e o ff e re d th em w ith e x tr e m e c au tio n, in
c ase it h ad a C an ary C re am c o nceale d in th e c en te r, a n d G eo rg e c o nfid ed to
H arry th at h e a n d F re d w ere n ow w ork in g o n d ev elo pin g s o m eth in g e ls e . H arry
m ad e a m en ta l n ote n ev er to a ccep t s o m uch a s a c ris p f ro m F re d a n d G eo rg e in
f u tu re . H e s till h ad n't f o rg otte n D udle y a n d t h e T on-T ongue T off e e.
Snow w as f a llin g t h ic k ly u pon t h e c astle a n d i ts g ro unds n ow . T he p ale b lu e
B eau xbato ns c arria g e l o oked l ik e a l a rg e, c h illy , f ro ste d p um pkin n ex t t o t h e i c ed
g in gerb re ad house th at w as H ag rid 's cab in , w hile th e D urm str a n g sh ip 's
p orth ole s w ere g la zed w ith ic e, th e rig gin g w hite w ith fro st. T he h ouse -e lv es
d ow n in th e k itc h en w ere o utd oin g th em se lv es w ith a se rie s o f ric h , w arm in g
s te w s a n d s a v ory p uddin gs, a n d o nly F le u r D ela co ur s e em ed to b e a b le to fin d
a n yth in g t o c o m pla in a b out.
“It is to o 'e av y, a ll z is 'O gw arts fo od,” th ey h eard h er s a y in g g ru m pily a s
t h ey le ft th e G re at H all b eh in d h er o ne e v en in g (R on sk ulk in g b eh in d H arry ,
k een n ot t o b e s p otte d b y F le u r). “ I w ill n ot f it i n to m y d re ss r o bes!”
“O ooh th ere 's a tr a g ed y,” H erm io ne sn ap ped as F le u r w en t o ut in to th e
e n tr a n ce h all. “ S he r e ally t h in ks a l o t o f h ers e lf , t h at o ne, d oesn 't s h e?”
“H erm io ne— who a re y ou g oin g t o t h e b all w ith ?” s a id R on.
He k ep t s p rin gin g th is q uestio n o n h er, h opin g to s ta rtle h er in to a r e sp onse
b y a sk in g i t w hen s h e l e ast e x pecte d i t. H ow ev er, H erm io ne m ere ly f ro w ned a n d
s a id , “ I'm n ot t e llin g y ou, y ou'l l j u st m ak e f u n o f m e.”
“Y ou'r e j o kin g, W easle y !” s a id M alf o y, b eh in d t h em . “ Y ou'r e n ot t e llin g m e
s o m eo ne's a sk ed t h at t o t h e b all? N ot t h e l o ng-m ola re d M udblo od?”;
Harry a n d R on b oth w hip ped a ro und, b ut H erm io ne s a id lo udly , w av in g to
s o m eb ody o ver M alf o ys s h ould er, “ H ello , P ro fe sso r M oody!”
Malf o y w en t p ale a n d j u m ped b ack w ard , l o okin g w ild ly a ro und f o r M oody,

but h e w as s till u p a t t h e s ta ff t a b le , f in is h in g h is s te w .
“T w itc h y little fe rre t, a re n 't y ou, M alf o y?” s a id H erm io ne s c ath in gly , a n d
sh e, H arry , a n d R on w en t u p t h e m arb le s ta ir c ase l a u ghin g h eartily .
“H erm io ne,” s a id R on, lo okin g s id ew ay s a t h er, s u dden ly fro w nin g, “ y our
te eth … ”
“W hat a b out t h em ?” s h e s a id .
“W ell, t h ey 'r e d if f e re n t… I 'v e j u st n otic ed … ”
“O f c o urs e th ey a re — did y ou e x pect m e to k eep th ose fa n gs M alf o y g av e
me?”
“N o, I m ean , th ey 'r e d if f e re n t to h ow th ey w ere b efo re h e p ut th at h ex o n
you… T hey 'r e a ll… s tr a ig ht a n d— an d n orm al- s iz ed .”
Herm io ne s u dden ly s m ile d v ery m is c h ie v ously , a n d H arry n otic ed it to o: I t
was a v ery d if f e re n t s m ile f ro m t h e o ne h e r e m em bere d .
“W ell… w hen I w en t u p to M ad am P om fre y to g et th em s h ru nk, s h e h eld
up a m ir ro r a n d to ld m e to s to p h er w hen th ey w ere b ack to h ow th ey n orm ally
were ,” sh e sa id . “ A nd I ju st… le t h er c arry o n a b it.” S he sm ile d e v en m ore
wid ely . “ M um a n d D ad w on't b e to o p le ase d . I 'v e b een tr y in g to p ers u ad e th em
to le t m e s h rin k th em f o r a g es, b ut th ey w an te d m e to c arry o n w ith m y b ra ces.
You k now , th ey 'r e d en tis ts , th ey ju st d on't th in k te eth a n d m ag ic s h ould — lo ok!
Pig w id geo ns b ack !”
Ron's t in y o w l w as t w itte rin g m ad ly o n t h e t o p o f t h e i c ic le -la d en b an is te rs ,
a sc ro ll o f p arc h m en t tie d to h is le g . P eo ple p assin g h im w ere p oin tin g an d
la u ghin g, a n d a g ro up o f th ir d -y ear g ir ls p au se d a n d s a id , “ O h lo ok a t th e w een y
ow l! I s n 't h e c u te ?”
Stu pid little f e ath ery g it! ” R on h is se d , h urry in g u p th e s ta ir s a n d s n atc h in g
up P ig w id geo n. “Y ou b rin g le tte rs to th e ad dre sse e! Y ou d on't h an g aro und
sh ow in g o ff !”
Pig w id geo n h oote d h ap pily , h is h ead p ro tr u din g o ver R on's f is t. T he th ir d -
year g ir ls a ll l o oked v ery s h ock ed .
“C le ar o ff !” R on s n ap ped a t t h em , w av in g t h e f is t h old in g P ig w id geo n, w ho
hoote d m ore h ap pily th an ev er as h e so are d th ro ugh th e air. “H ere — ta k e it,
Harry ,” R on a d ded in a n u nderto ne a s th e th ir d -y ear g ir ls s c u ttle d a w ay lo okin g
sc an daliz ed . H e p ulle d S ir iu s's r e p ly o ff P ig w id geo ns l e g . H arry p ock ete d i t, a n d
th ey h urrie d b ack t o G ry ff in dor T ow er t o r e ad i t.
Every one in th e co m mon ro om w as m uch to o b usy in le ttin g o ff m ore
holid ay s te am t o o bse rv e w hat a n yone e ls e w as u p t o . R on, H arry , a n d H erm io ne
sa t a p art f ro m e v ery one e ls e b y a d ark w in dow t h at w as g ra d ually f illin g u p w ith
sn ow , a n d H arry r e ad o ut:
Dear H arry ,

Congra tu la tio ns o n g ettin g p ast th e H orn ta il. W hoev er p ut y our n am e in
th at g oble t s h ould n't b e fe elin g to o h ap py rig ht n ow ! I w as g oin g to s u ggest a
Conju nctiv itu s C urs e , a s a d ra g on's e y es a re its w eak est p oin t— ”T hat's w hat
Kru m d id !” H erm io ne w his p ere d — but y our w ay w as b ette r, I 'm i m pre sse d .
Don't g et c o m pla cen t, th ough. H arry . Y ou'v e o nly d one o ne ta sk ; w hoev er
put y ou in fo r th e to urn am en t's g ot p le n ty m ore o pportu nity if th ey 'r e tr y in g to
hurt y ou. K eep y our e y es o pen – partic u la rly w hen th e p ers o n w e d is c u sse d is
aro und a n d c o ncen tr a te o n k eep in g y ours e lf o ut o f t r o uble .
Keep i n t o uch , I s till w an t t o h ear a b out a n yth in g u nusu al.
Sir iu s
“H e s o unds e x actly l ik e M oody,” s a id H arry q uie tly , t u ck in g t h e l e tte r a w ay
ag ain in sid e h is r o bes. “ 'C onsta n t v ig ila n ce!' Y ou'd th in k I w alk a ro und w ith m y
ey es s h ut, b an gin g o ff t h e w alls … ”
“B ut h e's r ig ht, H arry ,” s a id H erm io ne, “ y ou h av e s till g ot tw o ta sk s to d o.
You re ally o ught to h av e a lo ok a t th at e g g, y ou k now , a n d s ta rt w ork in g o ut
what i t m ean s… ”
“H erm io ne, h e's g ot a g es!” s n ap ped R on. “ W an t a g am e o f c h ess, H arry ?”
“Y eah , o kay,” s a id H arry . T hen , s p ottin g th e lo ok o n H erm io ne's fa ce, h e
sa id , “ C om e o n, h ow 'm I s u ppose d to c o ncen tr a te w ith a ll th is n ois e g oin g o n? I
won't e v en b e a b le t o h ear t h e e g g o ver t h is l o t.”
“O h I su ppose n ot,” sh e sig hed , an d sh e sa t d ow n to w atc h th eir ch ess
matc h , w hic h c u lm in ate d in a n e x citin g c h eck m ate o f R on's , in volv in g a c o uple
of r e ck le ssly b ra v e p aw ns a n d a v ery v io le n t b is h op.
Harry a w oke v ery s u dden ly o n C hris tm as D ay. W onderin g w hat h ad c au se d
his a b ru pt r e tu rn to c o nsc io usn ess, h e o pen ed h is e y es, a n d s a w s o m eth in g w ith
very la rg e, r o und, g re en e y es s ta rin g b ack a t h im in th e d ark ness, s o c lo se th ey
were a lm ost n ose t o n ose .
“D obby!” H arry y elle d , s c ra m blin g a w ay f ro m th e e lf s o f a st h e a lm ost f e ll
out o f b ed . “ D on't d o t h at! ”
“D obby is s o rry , s ir !” s q ueak ed D obby a n xio usly , ju m pin g b ack w ard w ith
his lo ng fin gers o ver h is m outh . “ D obby is o nly w an tin g to w is h H arry P otte r
'M erry C hris tm as' an d b rin g h im a p re se n t, S ir ! H arry P otte r d id sa y D obby
co uld c o m e a n d s e e h im s o m etim es, s ir !”
It's o kay,” s a id H arry , s till b re ath in g r a th er f a ste r t h an u su al, w hile h is h eart
ra te re tu rn ed to n orm al. “ Ju st— ju st p ro d m e o r so m eth in g in fu tu re , a ll rig ht,
don't b en d o ver m e l ik e t h at… ”
Harry p ulle d b ack th e c u rta in s a ro und h is f o ur- p oste r, to ok h is g la sse s f ro m
his b ed sid e t a b le , a n d p ut t h em o n. H is y ell h ad a w oken R on, S eam us, D ean , a n d
Nev ille . A ll o f th em w ere p eerin g th ro ugh th e g ap s in th eir o w n h an gin gs,

heav y-e y ed a n d t o usle -h air e d .
“S om eo ne a tta ck in g y ou, H arry ?” S eam us a sk ed s le ep ily .
“N o, i t's j u st D obby,” H arry m utte re d . “ G o b ack t o s le ep .”
“N ah … p re se n ts !” sa id S eam us, sp ottin g th e la rg e p ile a t th e fo ot o f h is
bed . R on, D ean , a n d N ev ille d ecid ed th at n ow th ey w ere a w ak e th ey m ig ht a s
well g et d ow n to s o m e p re se n t- o pen in g to o. H arry tu rn ed b ack to D obby, w ho
was n ow s ta n din g n erv ously n ex t t o H arry s b ed , s till l o okin g w orrie d t h at h e h ad
upse t H arry . T here w as a C hris tm as b au ble t ie d t o t h e l o op o n t o p o f h is t e a c o zy.
“C an D obby g iv e H arry P otte r h is p re se n t? ” h e s q ueak ed t e n ta tiv ely .
“'C ours e y ou c an ,” s a id H arry . “ E r… I 'v e g ot s o m eth in g f o r y ou t o o.”
It w as a lie ; h e h ad n't b ought a n yth in g fo r D obby a t a ll, b ut h e q uic k ly
open ed h is tr u nk a n d p ulle d o ut a p artic u la rly k nobbly ro lle d -u p p air o f s o ck s.
They w ere h is o ld est a n d fo ule st, m usta rd y ello w , a n d h ad o nce b elo nged to
Uncle V ern on. T he re aso n th ey w ere e x tr a -k nobbly w as th at H arry h ad b een
usin g th em to c u sh io n h is S neak osc o pe fo r o ver a y ear n ow . H e p ulle d o ut th e
Sneak o-s c o pe a n d h an ded th e s o ck s to D obby, s a y in g, “ S orry , I fo rg ot to w ra p
th em … ”
But D obby w as u tte rly d elig hte d .
“S ock s a re D obby's fa v orite , fa v orite c lo th es, s ir !” h e s a id , rip pin g o ff h is
odd o nes a n d p ullin g o n U ncle V ern on's . “ I h as s e v en n ow , s ir … B ut s ir … ” h e
sa id , h is e y es w id en in g, h av in g p ulle d b oth s o ck s u p to th eir h ig hest e x te n t, s o
th at th ey re ach ed to th e b otto m o f h is s h orts , “ th ey h as m ad e a m is ta k e in th e
sh op, H arry P otte r, t h ey i s g iv in g y ou t w o t h e s a m e!”
“A h, n o, H arry , h ow c o m e y ou d id n't s p ot th at? ” s a id R on, g rin nin g o ver
fro m h is o w n b ed , w hic h w as n ow s tr e w n w ith w ra p pin g p ap er. “ T ell y ou w hat,
Dobby— here y ou g o— ta k e th ese tw o, a n d y ou c an m ix th em u p p ro perly . A nd
here 's y our s w eate r.”
He t h re w D obby a p air o f v io le t s o ck s h e h ad j u st u nw ra p ped , a n d t h e h an d-
knitte d s w eate r M rs . W easle y h ad s e n t, D obby l o oked q uite o verw helm ed .
“S ir i s v ery k in d!” h e s q ueak ed , h is e y es b rim min g w ith t e ars a g ain , b ow in g
deep ly to R on. “ D obby k new s ir m ust b e a g re at w iz ard , f o r h e is H arry P otte r's
gre ate st f rie n d, b ut D obby d id n ot k now t h at h e w as a ls o a s g en ero us o f s p ir it, a s
noble , a s s e lf le ss— ”
“T hey 'r e o nly s o ck s,” s a id R on, w ho h ad g one s lig htly p in k a ro und t h e e ars ,
th ough h e lo oked ra th er p le ase d all th e sa m e. “W ow , H arry — ” H e h ad ju st
open ed H arry 's p re se n t, a C hudle y C an non h at. “ C ool! ” H e ja m med it o nto h is
head , w here i t c la sh ed h orrib ly w ith h is h air.
Dobby n ow h an ded H arry a s m all p ack ag e, w hic h t u rn ed o ut t o b e— so ck s.
“D obby i s m ak in g t h em h im se lf , s ir !” t h e e lf s a id h ap pily . “ H e i s b uyin g t h e

wool o ut o f h is w ag es, s ir !”
The le ft s o ck w as b rig ht r e d a n d h ad a p atte rn o f b ro om stic k s u pon it; th e
rig ht s o ck w as g re en w ith a p atte rn o f S nitc h es.
“T hey 'r e … th ey 'r e r e ally … w ell, th an ks, D obby,” s a id H arry , a n d h e p ulle d
th em o n, c au sin g D obby's e y es t o l e ak w ith h ap pin ess a g ain .
“D obby m ust g o n ow , sir , w e is a lr e ad y m ak in g C hris tm as d in ner in th e
kitc h en s!” s a id D obby, a n d h e h urrie d o ut o f th e d orm ito ry , w av in g g ood-b ye to
Ron a n d t h e o th ers a s h e p asse d .
Harry 's o th er p re se n ts w ere m uch m ore s a tis fa cto ry t h an D obby's o dd s o ck s
—with t h e o bvio us e x cep tio n o f t h e D urs le y s', w hic h c o nsis te d o f a s in gle t is su e,
an a ll- tim e lo w — Harry s u ppose d th ey to o w ere re m em ber in g th e T on-T ongue
Toff e e. H erm io ne h ad g iv en H arry a b ook c alle d Q uid ditc h T eam s o f B rita in a n d
Ire la n d; R on, a bulg in g bag of D ungbom bs; S ir iu s, a han dy pen knif e w ith
atta ch m en ts to u nlo ck a n y lo ck a n d u ndo a n y k not; a n d H ag rid , a v ast b ox o f
sw eets in clu din g all H arry s fa v orite s: Bertie Bott's Every Fla v or Bean s,
Choco la te F ro gs, D ro oble 's B est B lo w in g G um , a n d F iz zin g W hiz b ees. T here
was als o , o f co urs e , M rs . W easle y 's u su al p ack ag e, in clu din g a n ew sw eate r
(g re en , w ith a p ic tu re o f a d ra g on o n i t— Harry s u ppose d C harlie h ad t o ld h er a ll
ab out t h e H orn ta il) , a n d a l a rg e q uan tity o f h om em ad e m in ce p ie s.
Harry a n d R on m et u p w ith H erm io ne in th e c o m mon r o om , a n d th ey w en t
dow n to bre ak fa st to geth er. T hey sp en t m ost of th e m orn in g in G ry ff in dor
Tow er, w here e v ery one w as e n jo yin g th eir p re se n ts , th en re tu rn ed to th e G re at
Hall fo r a m ag nif ic en t lu nch , w hic h in clu ded at le ast a h undre d tu rk ey s an d
Chris tm as p uddin gs, a n d l a rg e p ile s o f C rib bag e's W iz ard in g C ra ck ers .
They w en t o ut o nto th e g ro unds in th e a fte rn oon; th e s n ow w as u nto uch ed
ex cep t f o r th e d eep c h an nels m ad e b y th e D urm str a n g a n d B eau xbato ns s tu den ts
on th eir w ay u p to th e c astle . H erm io ne c h ose to w atc h H arry a n d th e W easle y s'
sn ow ball fig ht ra th er th an jo in in , a n d a t fiv e o 'c lo ck s a id s h e w as g oin g b ack
upsta ir s t o g et r e ad y f o r t h e b all.
“W hat, y ou n eed th re e h ours ? ” s a id R on, lo okin g a t h er in cre d ulo usly a n d
pay in g f o r h is la p se in c o ncen tr a tio n w hen a la rg e s n ow ball, th ro w n b y G eo rg e,
hit h im h ard o n th e s id e o f th e h ead . “ W ho'r e y ou g oin g w ith ?” h e y elle d a fte r
Herm io ne, b ut s h e j u st w av ed a n d d is a p peare d u p t h e s to ne s te p s i n to t h e c astle .
There w as n o C hris tm as te a to day, a s th e b all in clu ded a f e ast, s o a t s e v en
o'c lo ck , w hen it h ad b eco m e h ard to a im p ro perly , th e o th ers a b an doned th eir
sn ow ball f ig ht a n d tr o oped b ack to th e c o m mon r o om . T he F at L ad y w as s ittin g
in h er fra m e w ith h er frie n d V io le t fro m d ow nsta ir s , b oth o f th em e x tr e m ely
tip sy , e m pty b oxes o f c h oco la te l iq ueu rs l itte rin g t h e b otto m o th er p ic tu re .
“L air y f ig hts , t h at's t h e o ne!” s h e g ig gle d w hen t h ey g av e t h e p assw ord , a n d

sh e s w ung f o rw ard t o l e t t h em i n sid e.
Harry , R on, S eam us, D ean , a n d N ev ille c h an ged i n to t h eir d re ss r o bes u p i n
th eir d orm ito ry , a ll o f th em lo okin g v ery se lf -c o nsc io us, b ut n one a s m uch a s
Ron, w ho su rv ey ed h im se lf in th e lo ng m ir ro r in th e c o rn er w ith a n a p palle d
lo ok o n h is f a ce. T here w as ju st n o g ettin g a ro und th e f a ct th at h is r o bes lo oked
more lik e a d re ss th an a n yth in g e ls e . In a d esp era te a tte m pt to m ak e th em lo ok
more m an ly , h e u se d a S ev erin g C harm o n th e ru ff a n d c u ff s . It w ork ed fa ir ly
well; a t le ast h e w as n ow la ce-fre e, a lth ough h e h ad n't d one a v ery n eat jo b, a n d
th e e d ges s till l o oked d ep re ssin gly f ra y ed a s t h e b oys s e t o ff d ow nsta ir s .
“I s till c an 't w ork o ut h ow y ou tw o g ot th e b est- lo okin g g ir ls in th e y ear,”
mutte re d D ean .
“A nim al m ag netis m ,” sa id R on g lo om ily , p ullin g str a y th re ad s o ut o f h is
cu ff s .
The c o m mon ro om lo oked s tr a n ge, fu ll o f p eo ple w earin g d if f e re n t c o lo rs
in ste ad o f th e u su al m ass o f b la ck . P arv ati w as w aitin g f o r H arry a t th e f o ot o f
th e sta ir s . S he lo oked v ery p re tty in deed , in ro bes o f sh ock in g p in k, w ith h er
lo ng d ark p la it b ra id ed w ith g old , a n d g old b ra cele ts g lim merin g a t h er w ris ts .
Harry w as r e lie v ed t o s e e t h at s h e w asn 't g ig glin g.
“Y ou— er— lo ok n ic e,” h e s a id a w kw ard ly .
“T han ks,” s h e s a id . “ P ad m a's g oin g to m eet y ou in th e e n tr a n ce h all,” s h e
ad ded t o R on.
“R ig ht,” s a id R on, l o okin g a ro und. “ W here 's H erm io ne?”
Parv ati s h ru gged . “ S hall w e g o d ow n t h en , H arry ?”
“O kay,” s a id H arry , w is h in g h e c o uld ju st s ta y in th e c o m mon ro om . F re d
win ked a t H arry a s h e p asse d h im o n t h e w ay o ut o f t h e p ortr a it h ole .
The e n tr a n ce h all w as p ack ed w ith s tu den ts to o, a ll m illin g a ro und w aitin g
fo r e ig ht o 'c lo ck , w hen t h e d oors t o t h e G re at H all w ould b e t h ro w n o pen . T hose
peo ple w ho w ere m eetin g p artn ers fro m d if f e re n t H ouse s w ere e d gin g th ro ugh
th e c ro w d t r y in g t o f in d o ne a n oth er. P arv ati f o und h er s is te r, P ad m a, a n d l e d h er
over t o H arry a n d R on.
“H i,” sa id P ad m a, w ho w as lo okin g ju st a s p re tty a s P arv ati in ro bes o f
brig ht tu rq uois e . S he d id n't lo ok to o e n th usia stic a b out h av in g R on a s a p artn er,
th ough; h er d ark e y es lin gere d o n th e f ra y ed n eck a n d s le ev es o f h is d re ss r o bes
as s h e l o oked h im u p a n d d ow n.
“H i,” s a id R on, n ot lo okin g a t h er, b ut s ta rin g a ro und a t th e c ro w d. “ O h n o
…”
He b en t h is k nees slig htly to h id e b eh in d H arry , b ecau se F le u r D ela co ur
was p assin g, lo okin g s tu nnin g in r o bes o f s ilv er- g ra y s a tin , a n d a cco m pan ie d b y
th e R av en cla w Q uid ditc h c ap ta in , R oger D av ie s. W hen th ey h ad d is a p peare d ,

Ron s to od s tr a ig ht a g ain a n d s ta re d o ver t h e h ead s o f t h e c ro w d.
“W here i s H erm io ne?” h e s a id a g ain .
A g ro up o f S ly th erin s c am e u p t h e s te p s f ro m t h eir d ungeo n c o m mon r o om .
Malf o y w as in fro nt; h e w as w earin g d re ss ro bes o f b la ck v elv et w ith a h ig h
co lla r, w hic h in H arry 's o pin io n m ad e h im lo ok lik e a v ic ar. P an sy P ark in so n in
very frilly ro bes o f p ale p in k w as c lu tc h in g M alf o y's a rm . C ra b be a n d G oyle
were b oth w earin g g re en ; th ey r e se m ble d m oss-c o lo re d b ould ers , a n d n eith er o f
th em , H arry w as p le ase d t o s e e, h ad m an ag ed t o f in d a p artn er.
The o ak f ro nt d oors o pen ed , a n d e v ery one t u rn ed t o l o ok a s t h e D urm str a n g
stu den ts e n te re d w ith P ro fe sso r K ark aro ff . K ru m w as a t th e fro nt o f th e p arty ,
acco m pan ie d b y a p re tty g ir l in b lu e r o bes H arry d id n't k now . O ver th eir h ead s
he s a w th at a n a re a o f la w n r ig ht in f ro nt o f th e c astle h ad b een tr a n sfo rm ed in to
a so rt o f g ro tto fu ll o f fa ir y lig hts — mean in g h undre d s o f a ctu al liv in g fa ir ie s
were s ittin g in th e ro se b ush es th at h ad b een c o nju re d th ere , a n d flu tte rin g o ver
th e s ta tu es o f w hat s e em ed t o b e F ath er C hris tm as a n d h is r e in deer.
Then P ro fe sso r M cG onag all's v oic e c alle d , “ C ham pio ns o ver h ere , p le ase !”
Parv ati r e ad ju ste d h er b an gle s, b eam in g; s h e a n d H arry s a id , “ S ee y ou in a
min ute ” to R on a n d P ad m a a n d w alk ed f o rw ard , th e c h atte rin g c ro w d p artin g to
le t th em th ro ugh. P ro fe sso r M cG onag all, w ho w as w earin g d re ss ro bes o f re d
ta rta n a n d h ad a rra n ged a ra th er u gly w re ath o f th is tle s a ro und th e b rim o th er
hat, to ld th em to w ait o n o ne s id e o f th e d oors w hile e v ery one e ls e w en t in sid e;
th ey w ere to e n te r th e G re at H all in p ro cessio n w hen th e r e st o f th e s tu den ts h ad
sa t d ow n. F le u r D ela co ur a n d R oger D av ie s sta tio ned th em se lv es n eare st th e
doors ; D av ie s lo oked so stu nned b y h is g ood fo rtu ne in h av in g F le u r fo r a
partn er th at h e c o uld h ard ly ta k e h is e y es o ff h er. C ed ric a n d C ho w ere c lo se to
Harry to o; h e lo oked a w ay fro m th em s o h e w ould n't h av e to ta lk to th em . H is
ey es f e ll i n ste ad o n t h e g ir l n ex t t o K ru m . H is j a w d ro pped .
It w as H erm io ne.
But s h e d id n't lo ok lik e H erm io ne a t a ll. S he h ad d one s o m eth in g w ith h er
hair ; it w as n o lo nger b ush y b ut s le ek a n d s h in y, a n d tw is te d u p in to a n e le g an t
knot at th e back of her head . She w as w earin g ro bes m ad e of a flo aty ,
periw in kle -b lu e m ate ria l, a n d s h e w as h old in g h ers e lf d if f e re n tly , s o m eh ow — or
may be i t w as m ere ly t h e a b se n ce o f t h e t w en ty o r s o b ooks s h e u su ally h ad s lu ng
over h er b ack . S he w as als o sm ilin g— ra th er n erv ously , it w as tr u e— but th e
re d uctio n in th e siz e o f h er fro nt te eth w as m ore n otic eab le th an e v er; H arry
co uld n't u nders ta n d h ow h e h ad n't s p otte d i t b efo re .
“H i, H arry !” s h e s a id . “ H i, P arv ati! ”
Parv ati w as g azin g a t H erm io ne in u nfla tte rin g d is b elie f. S he w asn 't th e
only o ne e ith er; w hen th e d oors to th e G re at H all o pen ed , K ru m 's f a n c lu b f ro m

th e lib ra ry sta lk ed p ast, th ro w in g H erm io ne lo oks o f d eep est lo ath in g. P an sy
Park in so n g ap ed a t h er a s s h e w alk ed b y w ith M alf o y, a n d e v en h e d id n't s e em t o
be ab le to fin d an in su lt to th ro w at her. R on, how ev er, w alk ed rig ht past
Herm io ne w ith out l o okin g a t h er.
Once e v ery one e ls e w as s e ttle d in th e H all, P ro fe sso r M cG onag all to ld th e
ch am pio ns a n d th eir p artn ers to g et in lin e in p air s a n d to fo llo w h er. T hey d id
so , a n d e v ery one i n t h e G re at H all a p pla u ded a s t h ey e n te re d a n d s ta rte d w alk in g
up to w ard a la rg e ro und ta b le a t th e to p o f th e H all, w here th e ju dges w ere
sittin g.
The w alls o f th e H all h ad a ll b een c o vere d in s p ark lin g s ilv er fro st, w ith
hundre d s o f g arla n ds o f m is tle to e a n d iv y c ro ssin g th e s ta rry b la ck c eilin g. T he
House ta b le s h ad v an is h ed ; in ste ad , th ere w ere a b out a h undre d s m alle r, la n te rn -
lit o nes, e ach s e atin g a b out a d ozen p eo ple .
Harry co ncen tr a te d o n n ot tr ip pin g o ver h is fe et. P arv ati se em ed to b e
en jo yin g hers e lf ; sh e w as beam in g aro und at ev ery body, ste erin g H arry so
fo rc efu lly th at h e f e lt a s th ough h e w ere a s h ow d og s h e w as p uttin g th ro ugh its
paces. H e c au ght s ig ht o f R on a n d P ad m a a s h e n eare d th e to p ta b le . R on w as
watc h in g H erm io ne p ass w ith n arro w ed e y es. P ad m a w as l o okin g s u lk y.
Dum ble d ore s m ile d h ap pily a s th e c h am pio ns a p pro ach ed th e to p ta b le , b ut
Kark aro ff w ore a n e x pre ssio n re m ark ab ly lik e R on's a s h e w atc h ed K ru m a n d
Herm io ne d ra w n eare r. L udo B ag m an , to nig ht in ro bes o f b rig ht p urp le w ith
la rg e y ello w s ta rs , w as c la p pin g a s e n th usia stic ally a s a n y o f th e s tu den ts ; a n d
Mad am e M ax im e, w ho h ad ch an ged h er u su al u nif o rm o f b la ck sa tin fo r a
flo w in g g ow n o f la v en der s ilk , w as a p pla u din g th em p olite ly . B ut M r. C ro uch ,
Harry s u dden ly r e aliz ed , w as n ot th ere . T he f if th s e at a t th e ta b le w as o ccu pie d
by P erc y W easle y.
When th e c h am pio ns a n d th eir p artn ers re ach ed th e ta b le , P erc y d re w o ut
th e e m pty c h air b esid e h im , s ta rin g p oin te d ly a t H arry . H arry to ok th e h in t a n d
sa t d ow n n ex t to P erc y, w ho w as w earin g b ra n d-n ew , n av y-b lu e d re ss r o bes a n d
an e x pre ssio n o f s u ch s m ugness t h at H arry t h ought i t o ught t o b e f in ed .
“I'v e b een p ro m ote d ,” P erc y s a id b efo re H arry c o uld e v en a sk , a n d f ro m h is
to ne, he m ig ht hav e been an nouncin g his ele ctio n as su pre m e ru le r of th e
univ ers e . “ I'm n ow M r. C ro uch 's p ers o nal a ssis ta n t, a n d I'm h ere re p re se n tin g
him .”
“W hy d id n't h e c o m e?” H arry a sk ed . H e w asn 't lo okin g fo rw ard to b ein g
le ctu re d o n c au ld ro n b otto m s a ll t h ro ugh d in ner.
“I'm a fra id to s a y M r. C ro uch is n 't w ell, n ot w ell a t a ll. H asn 't b een rig ht
sin ce t h e W orld C up. H ard ly s u rp ris in g— overw ork . H e's n ot a s y oung a s h e w as
—th ough s till q uite b rillia n t, o f c o urs e , th e m in d r e m ain s a s g re at a s it e v er w as.

But th e W orld C up w as a fia sc o fo r th e w hole M in is tr y , a n d th en , M r. C ro uch
su ff e re d a h uge p ers o nal sh ock w ith th e m is b eh av io r o f th at h ouse -e lf o f h is ,
Blin ky, o r w hate v er sh e w as calle d . N atu ra lly , h e d is m is se d h er im med ia te ly
afte rw ard , b ut— well, a s I s a y, h e's g ettin g o n, h e n eed s l o okin g a fte r, a n d I t h in k
he's f o und a d efin ite d ro p in h is h om e c o m fo rts s in ce s h e le ft. A nd th en w e h ad
th e to urn am en t to arra n ge, an d th e afte rm ath o f th e C up to d eal w ith — th at
re v oltin g S keete r w om an b uzzin g aro und— no, p oor m an , h e's h av in g a w ell
earn ed , q uie t C hris tm as. I'm ju st g la d h e k new h e h ad s o m eo ne h e c o uld re ly
upon t o t a k e h is p la ce.”
Harry w an te d v ery m uch to a sk w heth er M r. C ro uch h ad sto pped c allin g
Perc y “ W eath erb y” y et, b ut r e sis te d t h e t e m pta tio n.
There w as n o fo od a s y et o n th e g litte rin g g old en p la te s, b ut s m all m en us
were ly in g in f ro nt o f e ach o f th em . H arry p ic k ed h is u p u ncerta in ly a n d lo oked
aro und— th ere w ere n o w aite rs . D um ble d ore , h ow ev er, lo oked c are fu lly d ow n a t
his o w n m en u, t h en s a id v ery c le arly t o h is p la te , “ P ork c h ops!”
And p ork c h ops a p peare d . G ettin g t h e i d ea, t h e r e st o f t h e t a b le p la ced t h eir
ord ers w ith th eir p la te s to o. H arry g la n ced u p a t H erm io ne to s e e h ow s h e fe lt
ab out th is n ew a n d m ore c o m plic ate d m eth od o f d in in g— su re ly it m ean t p le n ty
of e x tr a w ork fo r th e h ouse -e lv es? — but fo r o nce, H erm io ne d id n't s e em to b e
th in kin g a b out S . P . E . W . S he w as d eep in ta lk w ith V ik to r K ru m a n d h ard ly
se em ed t o n otic e w hat s h e w as e atin g.
It n ow o ccu rre d to H arry th at h e h ad n ev er actu ally h eard K ru m sp eak
befo re , b ut h e w as c erta in ly t a lk in g n ow , a n d v ery e n th usia stic ally a t t h at.
“V eil, v e h av e a c astle a ls o , n ot a s b ig a s th is , n or a s c o m fo rta b le , I a m
th in kin g,” h e w as t e llin g H erm io ne. “ V e h av e j u st f o ur f lo ors , a n d t h e f ir e s a re l it
only f o r m ag ic al p urp ose s. B ut v e h av e g ro unds la rg er e v en th an th ese — th ough
in v in te r, v e h av e v ery little d ay lig ht, so v e are n ot en jo yin g th em . B ut in
su m mer v e a re f ly in g e v ery d ay, o ver t h e l a k es a n d t h e m ounta in s— ”
“N ow , n ow , V ik to r!” s a id K ark aro ff w ith a la u gh th at d id n't r e ach h is c o ld
ey es, “ d on't g o g iv in g a w ay a n yth in g e ls e , n ow , o r y our c h arm in g frie n d w ill
know e x actly w here t o f in d u s!”
Dum ble d ore s m ile d , h is e y es t w in klin g. “ Ig or, a ll t h is s e cre cy ., . o ne w ould
alm ost t h in k y ou d id n't w an t v is ito rs .”
“W ell, D um ble d ore ,” s a id K ark aro ff , d is p la y in g h is y ello w in g te eth to th eir
fu lle st e x te n t, “ w e a re a ll p ro te ctiv e o f o ur p riv ate d om ain s, a re w e n ot? D o w e
not je alo usly g uard th e h alls o f le arn in g th at h av e b een e n tr u ste d to u s? A re w e
not r ig ht t o b e p ro ud t h at w e a lo ne k now o ur s c h ool's s e cre ts , a n d r ig ht t o p ro te ct
th em ?”
“O h I w ould n ev er d re am o f a ssu m in g I k now a ll H ogw arts ' s e cre ts , I g or,”

sa id D um ble d ore a m ic ab ly . “ O nly th is m orn in g, fo r in sta n ce, I to ok a w ro ng
tu rn in g on th e w ay to th e bath ro om an d fo und m yse lf in a beau tif u lly
pro portio ned ro om I hav e nev er se en befo re , co nta in in g a re ally ra th er
mag nif ic en t c o lle ctio n o f c h am ber p ots . W hen I w en t b ack to in vestig ate m ore
clo se ly , I d is c o vere d th at th e r o om h ad v an is h ed . B ut I m ust k eep a n e y e o ut f o r
it. P ossib ly it is o nly a ccessib le a t fiv e-th ir ty in th e m orn in g. O r it m ay o nly
ap pear at th e quarte r m oon— or w hen th e se ek er has an ex cep tio nally fu ll
bla d der.”
Harry sn orte d in to h is p la te o f g oula sh . P erc y fro w ned , b ut H arry c o uld
hav e s w orn D um ble d ore h ad g iv en h im a v ery s m all w in k.
Mean w hile F le u r D ela co ur w as critic iz in g th e H ogw arts deco ra tio ns to
Roger D av ie s.
“Z is is n oth in g,” sh e sa id d is m is siv ely , lo okin g aro und at th e sp ark lin g
walls o f th e G re at H all. “ A t z e P ala ce o f B eau xbato ns, w e 'a v e ic e s c u lp tu re s a ll
aro und z e d in in g c h am ber a t C hre estm as. Z ey d o n ot m elt, o f c o urs e … z ey a re
lik e 'u ge s ta tu es o f d ia m ond, g litte rin g a ro und z e p la ce. A nd z e f o od is s e em ply
su perb . A nd w e 'a v e c h oir s o f w ood n ym phs, 'o o s e re n ad e u s a s w e e at. W e 'a v e
none of zis ugly arm or in ze 'a lls , an d eef a polte rg eis t ev er en ta ir e d in to
Beau xbato ns, 'e w ould b e e x pelle d l ik e z at.” S he s la p ped h er h an d o nto t h e t a b le
im patie n tly .
Roger D av ie s w as w atc h in g h er t a lk w ith a v ery d azed l o ok o n h is f a ce, a n d
he k ep t m is sin g h is m outh w ith h is fo rk . H arry h ad th e im pre ssio n th at D av ie s
was t o o b usy s ta rin g a t F le u r t o t a k e i n a w ord s h e w as s a y in g.
“A bso lu te ly rig ht,” h e sa id q uic k ly , sla p pin g h is o w n h an d d ow n o n th e
ta b le i n i m ita tio n o f F le u r. “ L ik e t h at. Y eah .”
Harry lo oked a ro und th e H all. H ag rid w as s ittin g a t o ne o f th e o th er s ta ff
ta b le s; h e w as b ack in h is h orrib le h air y b ro w n su it a n d g azin g u p a t th e to p
ta b le . H arry sa w h im g iv e a sm all w av e, an d lo okin g aro und, sa w M ad am e
Max im e r e tu rn i t, h er o pals g litte rin g i n t h e c an dle lig ht.
Herm io ne w as now te ach in g K ru m to sa y her nam e pro perly ; he kep t
callin g h er “ H erm y-o w n.”
“H er- m y-o h-n ee,” s h e s a id s lo w ly a n d c le arly .
“H erm -o w n-n in ny.”
“C lo se e n ough,” s h e s a id , c atc h in g H arry 's e y e a n d g rin nin g.
When a ll t h e f o od h ad b een c o nsu m ed , D um ble d ore s to od u p a n d a sk ed t h e
stu den ts to d o th e s a m e. T hen , w ith a w av e o f h is w an d, a ll th e ta b le s z o om ed
back alo ng th e w alls le av in g th e flo or cle ar, an d th en h e co nju re d a ra is e d
pla tf o rm in to e x is te n ce a lo ng th e rig ht w all. A s e t o f d ru m s, s e v era l g uita rs , a
lu te , a c ello , a n d s o m e b ag pip es w ere s e t u pon i t.

The “ W eir d S is te rs n ow tr o oped u p o nto th e sta g e to w ild ly e n th usia stic
ap pla u se ; t h ey w ere a ll e x tr e m ely h air y a n d d re sse d i n b la ck r o bes th at h ad b een
artf u lly rip ped a n d to rn . T hey p ic k ed u p th eir in str u m en ts , a n d H arry , w ho h ad
been so in te re ste d in w atc h in g th em th at h e h ad alm ost fo rg otte n w hat w as
co m in g, s u dden ly r e aliz ed th at th e la n te rn s o n a ll th e o th er ta b le s h ad g one o ut,
an d t h at t h e o th er c h am pio ns a n d t h eir p artn ers w ere s ta n din g u p.
“C om e o n!” P arv ati h is se d . “ W e'r e s u ppose d t o d an ce!”
Harry tr ip ped o ver h is d re ss r o bes a s h e s to od u p. T he W eir d S is te rs s tr u ck
up a slo w , m ourn fu l tu ne; H arry w alk ed onto th e brig htly lit dan ce flo or,
care fu lly a v oid in g c atc h in g a n yone's e y e ( h e c o uld s e e S eam us a n d D ean w av in g
at h im a n d s n ig gerin g), a n d n ex t m om en t, P arv ati h ad s e iz ed h is h an ds, p la ced
one a ro und h er w ais t, a n d w as h old in g t h e o th er t ig htly i n h ers .
It w asn 't a s b ad a s it c o uld h av e b een . H arry th ought, r e v olv in g s lo w ly o n
th e sp ot (P arv ati w as ste erin g). H e k ep t h is e y es fix ed o ver th e h ead s o f th e
watc h in g p eo ple , a n d v ery so on m an y o f th em to o h ad c o m e o nto th e d an ce
flo or, s o th at th e c h am pio ns w ere n o lo nger th e c en te r o f a tte n tio n. N ev ille a n d
Gin ny w ere d an cin g n earb y— he c o uld s e e G in ny w in cin g f re q uen tly a s N ev ille
tr o d o n h er f e et— an d D um ble d ore w as w altz in g w ith M ad am e M ax im e. H e w as
so dw arfe d by her th at th e to p of his poin te d hat bare ly tic k le d her ch in ;
how ev er, s h e m oved v ery g ra cefu lly f o r a w om an s o l a rg e. M ad -E ye M oody w as
doin g an ex tr e m ely ungain ly tw o-s te p w ith Pro fe sso r Sin is tr a , w ho w as
nerv ously a v oid in g h is w ooden l e g .
“N ic e s o ck s. P otte r,” M oody g ro w le d a s h e p asse d , h is m ag ic al e y e s ta rin g
th ro ugh H arry 's r o bes.
“O h— yeah , D obby th e house -e lf knitte d th em fo r m e,” sa id H arry ,
grin nin g.
“H e is so cre ep y!” P arv ati w his p ere d as M oody clu nked aw ay. “I d on't
th in k t h at e y e s h ould b e a llo w ed .”
Harry h eard th e fin al, q uav erin g n ote fro m th e b ag pip e w ith re lie f. T he
Weir d S is te rs s to pped p la y in g, a p pla u se f ille d th e h all o nce m ore , a n d H arry le t
go o f P arv ati a t o nce.
“L et's s it d ow n, s h all w e?”
“O h— but— th is is a re ally g ood o ne!” P arv ati sa id as th e W eir d S is te rs
str u ck u p a n ew s o ng, w hic h w as m uch f a ste r.
“N o, I d on't lik e it,” H arry lie d , a n d h e le d h er a w ay f ro m th e d an ce f lo or,
past F re d a n d A ngelin a, w ho w ere d an cin g s o e x hubera n tly th at p eo ple a ro und
th em w ere b ack in g a w ay in f e a r o f in ju ry , a n d o ver to th e ta b le w here R on a n d
Pad m a w ere s ittin g.
“H ow 's it g oin g?” H arry a sk ed R on, s ittin g d ow n a n d o pen in g a b ottle o f

butte rb eer.
Ron did n't an sw er. H e w as gla rin g at H erm io ne an d K ru m , w ho w ere
dan cin g n earb y. P ad m a w as sittin g w ith h er a rm s a n d le g s c ro sse d , o ne fo ot
jig glin g i n t im e t o t h e m usic . E very n ow a n d t h en s h e t h re w a d is g ru ntle d l o ok a t
Ron, w ho w as c o m ple te ly ig norin g h er. P arv ati s a t d ow n o n H arry 's o th er s id e,
cro sse d h er a rm s a n d le g s to o, a n d w ith in m in ute s w as a sk ed to d an ce b y a b oy
fro m B eau xbato ns.
“Y ou d on't m in d, d o y ou, H arry ?” P arv ati s a id .
“W hat? ” s a id H arry , w ho w as n ow w atc h in g C ho a n d C ed ric .
“O h n ev er m in d,” sn ap ped P arv ati, a n d sh e w en t o ff w ith th e b oy fro m
Beau xbato ns. W hen t h e s o ng e n ded , s h e d id n ot r e tu rn .
Herm io ne c am e o ver a n d s a t d ow n in P arv ati's e m pty c h air. S he w as a b it
pin k i n t h e f a ce f ro m d an cin g.
“H i,” s a id H arry . R on d id n't s a y a n yth in g.
“It's h ot, is n 't it? ” s a id H erm io ne, fa n nin g h ers e lf w ith h er h an d. “ V ik to rs
ju st g one t o g et s o m e d rin ks.”
Ron g av e h er a w ith erin g lo ok. “ V ik to r? ” h e s a id . “ H asn 't h e a sk ed y ou to
call h im V ic k y y et? ”
Herm io ne l o oked a t h im i n s u rp ris e . “ W hat's u p w ith y ou?” s h e s a id .
“If y ou d on't k now ,” s a id R on s c ath in gly , “ I'm n ot g oin g t o t e ll y ou.”
Herm io ne s ta re d a t h im , t h en a t H arry , w ho s h ru gged .
“R on, w hat— ?”
“H e's f ro m D urm str a n g!” s p at R on. “ H e's c o m petin g a g ain st H arry ! A gain st
Hogw arts ! Y ou— you'r e — ” R on w as o bvio usly c astin g a ro und f o r w ord s s tr o ng
en ough to d esc rib e H erm io ne's c rim e, “ fra te rn iz in g w ith th e e n em y, th at's w hat
you'r e d oin g!”
Herm io ne's m outh f e ll o pen .
“D on't b e s o s tu pid !” s h e s a id a fte r a m om en t. “ T he e n em y! H onestly — who
was th e o ne w ho w as a ll e x cite d w hen th ey s a w h im a rriv e? W ho w as th e o ne
who w an te d h is a u to gra p h? W ho's g ot a m odel o f h im u p i n t h eir d orm ito ry ?”
Ron c h ose to ig nore th is . “ I s 'p ose h e a sk ed y ou to c o m e w ith h im w hile
you w ere b oth i n t h e l ib ra ry ?”
“Y es, h e d id ,” s a id H erm io ne, t h e p in k p atc h es o n h er c h eek s g lo w in g m ore
brig htly . “ S o w hat? ”
“W hat h ap pen ed — tr y in g t o g et h im t o j o in s p ew , w ere y ou?”
“N o, I w asn 't ! I f y ou r e ally w an t t o k now , h e— he s a id h e'd b een c o m in g u p
to t h e l ib ra ry e v ery d ay t o t r y a n d t a lk t o m e, b ut h e h ad n't b een a b le t o p lu ck u p
th e c o ura g e!”
Herm io ne sa id th is v ery q uic k ly , a n d b lu sh ed so d eep ly th at sh e w as th e

sa m e c o lo r a s P arv ati's r o bes.
“Y eah , w ell— th at's h is s to ry ,” s a id R on n astily .
“A nd w hat's t h at s u ppose d t o m ean ?”
“O bvio us, is n 't it? H e's K ark aro ff 's stu den t, is n 't h e? H e k now s w ho y ou
han g aro und w ith … H e's ju st tr y in g to get clo se r to H arry — get in sid e
in fo rm atio n o n h im — or g et n ear e n ough t o j in x h im — ”
Herm io ne lo oked as th ough R on h ad sla p ped h er. W hen sh e sp oke, h er
voic e q uiv ere d .
“F or y our i n fo rm atio n, h e h asn 't a sk ed m e o ne s in gle t h in g a b out H arry , n ot
one— ”
Ron c h an ged t a ck a t t h e s p eed o f l ig ht.
“T hen h e's h opin g y ou'l l h elp h im f in d o ut w hat h is e g g m ean s! I s u ppose
you'v e b een p uttin g y our h ead s to geth er d urin g th ose c o zy little lib ra ry s e ssio ns
—”
“I'd n ev er h elp h im w ork o ut th at e g g!” s a id H erm io ne, lo okin g o utr a g ed .
“N ev er. H ow co uld you sa y so m eth in g lik e th at— I w an t H arry to w in th e
to urn am en t. H arry k now s t h at, d on't y ou, H arry ?”
“Y ou'v e g ot a f u nny w ay o f s h ow in g i t,” s n eere d R on.
“T his w hole to urn am en t's su ppose d to b e a b out g ettin g to k now fo re ig n
wiz ard s a n d m ak in g f rie n ds w ith t h em !” s a id H erm io ne h otly .
“N o i t i s n 't ! ” s h oute d R on. “ It's a b out w in nin g!”
Peo ple w ere s ta rtin g t o s ta re a t t h em .
“R on,” s a id H arry q uie tly , “ I h av en 't g ot a p ro ble m w ith H erm io ne c o m in g
with K ru m — ”
But R on i g nore d H arry t o o.
“W hy d on't y ou g o a n d f in d V ic k y, h e'l l b e w onderin g w here y ou a re ,” s a id
Ron.
“D on't c all h im V ic k y!”
Herm io ne ju m ped to her fe et an d sto rm ed off acro ss th e dan ce flo or,
dis a p pearin g in to th e c ro w d. R on w atc h ed h er g o w ith a m ix tu re o f a n ger a n d
sa tis fa ctio n o n h is f a ce.
“A re y ou g oin g t o a sk m e t o d an ce a t a ll? ” P ad m a a sk ed h im .
“N o,” s a id R on, s till g la rin g a fte r H erm io ne.
“F in e,” s n ap ped P ad m a, a n d s h e g ot u p a n d w en t to jo in P arv ati a n d th e
Beau xbato ns b oy, w ho c o nju re d u p o ne o f h is frie n ds to jo in th em s o fa st th at
Harry c o uld h av e s w orn h e h ad z o om ed h im t h ere b y a S um monin g C harm .
“V are i s H erm -o w n-n in ny?” s a id a v oic e.
Kru m h ad j u st a rriv ed a t t h eir t a b le c lu tc h in g t w o b utte rb eers .
“N o i d ea,” s a id R on m ulis h ly , l o okin g u p a t h im . “ L ost h er, h av e y ou?”

Kru m w as l o okin g s u rly a g ain .
“V eil, i f y ou s e e h er, t e ll h er I h aff d rin ks,” h e s a id , a n d h e s lo uch ed o ff .
“M ad e f rie n ds w ith V ik to r K ru m , h av e y ou, R on?”
Perc y h ad b ustle d o ver, ru bbin g h is h an ds to geth er a n d lo okin g e x tr e m ely
pom pous. “ E xcelle n t! T hat's th e w hole p oin t, y ou k now — in te rn atio nal m ag ic al
co opera tio n!”
To H arry 's d is p le asu re , P erc y n ow to ok P ad m a's v acate d s e at. T he to p ta b le
was n ow em pty ; P ro fe sso r D um ble d ore w as d an cin g w ith P ro fe sso r S pro ut,
Ludo B ag m an w ith P ro fe sso r M cG onag all; M ad am e M ax im e a n d H ag rid w ere
cu ttin g a w id e p ath a ro und th e d an ce f lo or a s th ey w altz ed th ro ugh th e s tu den ts ,
an d K ark aro ff w as n ow here to b e s e en . W hen th e n ex t s o ng e n ded , e v ery body
ap pla u ded o nce m ore , a n d H arry s a w L udo B ag m an k is s P ro fe sso r M cG onag all's
han d an d m ak e h is w ay b ack th ro ugh th e cro w ds, at w hic h p oin t F re d an d
Geo rg e a cco ste d h im .
“W hat d o th ey th in k th ey 'r e d oin g, a n noyin g se n io r M in is tr y m em bers ? ”
Perc y h is se d , w atc h in g F re d a n d G eo rg e s u sp ic io usly . “ N o r e sp ect… ”
Ludo B ag m an sh ook o ff F re d an d G eo rg e fa ir ly q uic k ly , h ow ev er, an d,
sp ottin g H arry , w av ed a n d c am e o ver t o t h eir t a b le .
“I h ope m y b ro th ers w ere n 't b oth erin g y ou, M r. B ag m an ?” sa id P erc y a t
once.
“W hat? O h n ot a t a ll, n ot a t a ll! ” s a id B ag m an . “ N o, th ey w ere ju st te llin g
me a b it m ore a b out th ose fa k e w an ds o f th eir s . W onderin g if I c o uld a d vis e
th em o n th e m ark etin g. I'v e p ro m is e d to p ut th em in to uch w ith a c o uple o f
co nta cts o f m in e a t Z onko's J o ke S hop… ”
Perc y d id n't lo ok h ap py a b out th is a t a ll, a n d H arry w as p re p are d to b et h e
would b e ru sh in g to te ll M rs . W easle y ab out th is th e m om en t h e g ot h om e.
Appare n tly F re d a n d G eo rg e's p la n s h ad g ro w n e v en m ore a m bitio us la te ly , if
th ey w ere h opin g to s e ll to th e p ublic . B ag m an o pen ed h is m outh to a sk H arry
so m eth in g, b ut P erc y d iv erte d h im .
“H ow d o y ou fe el th e to urn am en t's g oin g, M r. B ag m an ? O ur d ep artm en t's
quite s a tis fie d — th e h itc h w ith t h e G oble t o f F ir e ”— he g la n ced a t H arry — ”w as a
little u nfo rtu nate , o f c o urs e , b ut i t s e em s t o h av e g one v ery s m ooth ly s in ce, d on't
you t h in k?”
“O h y es,” B ag m an s a id c h eerfu lly , “ it's a ll b een e n orm ous fu n. H ow 's o ld
Barty d oin g? S ham e h e c o uld n't c o m e.”
“O h I'm su re M r. C ro uch w ill b e u p a n d a b out in n o tim e,” sa id P erc y
im porta n tly , “ b ut i n t h e m ean tim e, I 'm m ore t h an w illin g t o t a k e u p t h e s la ck . O f
co urs e , it's n ot a ll a tte n din g b alls ” — he la u ghed a ir ily — ”o h n o, I 'v e h ad to d eal
with all so rts o f th in gs th at h av e cro pped u p in h is ab se n ce— you h eard A li

Bash ir w as c au ght s m ugglin g a c o nsig nm en t o f f ly in g c arp ets in to th e c o untr y ?
And th en w e'v e been tr y in g to pers u ad e th e Tra n sy lv an ia n s to sig n th e
In te rn atio nal B an o n D uelin g. I'v e g ot a m eetin g w ith th eir H ead o f M ag ic al
Coopera tio n i n t h e n ew y ear— ”
“L et's g o f o r a w alk ,” R on m utte re d t o H arry , “ g et a w ay f ro m P erc y … ”
Pre te n din g th ey w an te d m ore d rin ks. H arry a n d R on le ft th e ta b le , e d ged
aro und th e d an ce flo or, a n d s lip ped o ut in to th e e n tr a n ce h all. T he fro nt d oors
sto od o pen , a n d t h e f lu tte rin g f a ir y l ig hts i n t h e r o se g ard en w in ked a n d t w in kle d
as th ey w en t d ow n th e f ro nt s te p s, w here th ey f o und th em se lv es s u rro unded b y
bush es; w in din g, o rn am en ta l p ath s; a n d la rg e sto ne sta tu es. H arry c o uld h ear
sp la sh in g w ate r, w hic h so unded lik e a fo unta in . H ere a n d th ere , p eo ple w ere
sittin g o n c arv ed b en ch es. H e a n d R on s e t o ff a lo ng o ne o f th e w in din g p ath s
th ro ugh th e r o se b ush es, b ut th ey h ad g one o nly a s h ort w ay w hen th ey h eard a n
unple asa n tly f a m ilia r v oic e.
“… don't s e e w hat t h ere i s t o f u ss a b out, I g or.”
“S ev eru s, you can not pre te n d th is is n 't hap pen in g!” K ark aro ff s voic e
so unded a n xio us a n d h ush ed , a s th ough k een n ot to b e o verh eard . “ It's b een
gettin g c le are r a n d c le are r fo r m onth s. I a m b eco m in g se rio usly c o ncern ed , I
can 't d en y i t ”
“T hen f le e,” s a id S nap es v oic e c u rtly . “ F le e— I w ill m ak e y our e x cu se s. I ,
how ev er, a m r e m ain in g a t H ogw arts .”
Snap e a n d K ark aro ff c am e a ro und th e c o rn er. S nap e h ad h is w an d o ut a n d
was b la stin g ro se b ush es a p art, h is e x pre ssio n m ost ill- n atu re d . S queals is su ed
fro m m an y o f t h e b ush es, a n d d ark s h ap es e m erg ed f ro m t h em .
“T en p oin ts fro m R av en cla w , F aw cett! ” S nap e sn arle d a s a g ir l ra n p ast
him . “ A nd t e n p oin ts f ro m H uff le p uff t o o, S te b bin s!” a s a b oy w en t r u sh in g a fte r
her. “ A nd w hat a re y ou tw o d oin g?” h e a d ded , c atc h in g s ig ht o f H arry a n d R on
on th e p ath a h ead . K ark aro ff , H arry sa w , lo oked slig htly d is c o m pose d to se e
th em sta n din g th ere . H is han d w en t nerv ously to his goate e, an d he beg an
win din g i t a ro und h is f in ger.
“W e r e w alk in g,” R on t o ld S nap e s h ortly . “ N ot a g ain st t h e l a w , i s i t? ”
“K eep w alk in g, th en !” S nap e s n arle d , a n d h e b ru sh ed p ast th em , h is lo ng
bla ck c lo ak b illo w in g o ut b eh in d h im . K ark aro ff h urrie d a w ay a fte r S nap e. H arry
an d R on c o ntin ued d ow n t h e p ath .
“W hat's g ot K ark aro ff a ll w orrie d ?” R on m utte re d .
“A nd s in ce w hen h av e h e a n d S nap e b een o n f ir s t- n am e te rm s? "sa id H arry
slo w ly .
They h ad r e ach ed a l a rg e s to ne r e in deer n ow , o ver w hic h t h ey c o uld s e e t h e
sp ark lin g je ts o f a ta ll fo unta in . T he s h ad ow y o utlin es o f tw o e n orm ous p eo ple

were v is ib le o n a s to ne b en ch , w atc h in g th e w ate r in th e m oonlig ht. A nd th en
Harry h eard H ag rid s p eak .
“M om en ' I s a w y eh , I k new ,” h e w as s a y in g, i n a n o ddly h usk y v oic e.
Harry a n d R on f ro ze. T his d id n't s o und lik e th e s o rt o f s c en e th ey o ught to
walk in o n, s o m eh ow … H arry lo oked a ro und, b ack u p th e p ath , a n d s a w F le u r
Dela co ur a n d R oger D av ie s sta n din g h alf -c o nceale d in a ro se b ush n earb y. H e
ta p ped R on o n th e s h ould er a n d je rk ed h is h ead to w ard th em , m ean in g th at th ey
co uld e asily s n eak o ff th at w ay w ith out b ein g n otic ed ( F le u r a n d D av ie s lo oked
very b usy to H arry ), b ut R on, e y es w id en in g in h orro r a t th e sig ht o f F le u r,
sh ook h is h ead v ig oro usly , a n d p ulle d H arry d eep er in to th e s h ad ow s b eh in d th e
re in deer.
“W hat d id y ou k now , 'A grid ?” sa id M ad am e M ax im e, a p urr in h er lo w
voic e.
Harry d efin ite ly d id n't w an t to lis te n to th is ; h e k new H ag rid w ould h ate to
be o verh eard in a s itu atio n lik e th is (h e c erta in ly w ould h av e)— if it h ad b een
possib le h e w ould h av e p ut h is f in gers in h is e ars a n d h um med lo udly , b ut th at
wasn 't re ally a n o ptio n. In ste ad h e tr ie d to in te re st h im se lf in a b eetle c ra w lin g
alo ng th e s to ne re in deer's b ack , b ut th e b eetle ju st w asn 't in te re stin g e n ough to
blo ck o ut H ag rid 's n ex t w ord s.
“I j u s' k new … k new y ou w ere l ik e m e… W as i t y er m oth er o r y er f a th er? ”
“I— I d on't k now w hat y ou m ean , 'A grid … ”
“It w as m y m oth er,” s a id H ag rid q uie tly . “ S he w as o ne o ' th e la s' o nes in
Brita in . 'C ours e , I c an ' r e m em ber h er to o w ell… s h e le ft, s e e. W hen I w as a b ou'
th re e. S he w asn ' re ally th e m ate rn al s o rt. W ell… it's n ot in th eir n atu re s, is it?
Dunno w hat h ap pen ed t o h er… m ig ht b e d ead f e r a ll I k now … ”
Mad am e M ax im e d id n't s a y a n yth in g. A nd H arry , in s p ite o f h im se lf , to ok
his ey es off th e beetle an d lo oked over th e to p of th e re in deer's an tle rs ,
lis te n in g… H e h ad n ev er h eard H ag rid t a lk a b out h is c h ild hood b efo re .
“M e d ad w as b ro ken -h earte d w hen s h e w en '. T in y little b lo ke, m y d ad w as.
By th e tim e I w as s ix I c o uld lif t h im u p a n ' p ut h im o n to p o ' th e d re sse r if h e
an noyed m e. U se d te r m ak e h im la u gh… ” H ag rid 's d eep v oic e b ro ke. M ad am e
Max im e w as lis te n in g, m otio nle ss, ap pare n tly sta rin g at th e silv ery fo unta in .
“D ad r a is e d m e… b ut h e d ie d , o ' c o urs e , ju s' a fte r I s ta rte d s c h ool. S orta h ad te r
mak e m e o w n w ay a fte r th at. D um ble d ore w as a r e al h elp , m in d. V ery k in d te r
me, h e w as… ”
Hag rid pulle d out a la rg e sp otte d silk han dkerc h ie f an d ble w his nose
heav ily .
“S o … an yw ay … e n ough a b ou' m e. W hat a b out y ou? W hic h s id e y ou g ot it
on?”

But M ad am e M ax im e h ad s u dden ly g ot t o h er f e et.
“It is ch illy ,” sh e sa id — but w hate v er th e w eath er w as doin g, it w as
now here n ear a s c o ld a s h er v oic e. “ I t h in k I w ill g o i n n ow .”
“E h?” s a id H ag rid b la n kly . “ N o, d on g o! I 'v e— I'v e n ev er m et a n oth er o ne
befo re !”
“A nuzzer w hat, p re cis e ly ?” s a id M ad am e M ax im e, h er t o ne i c y.
Harry c o uld h av e to ld H ag rid it w as b est n ot to a n sw er; h e s to od th ere in
th e s h ad ow s g rittin g h is te eth , h opin g a g ain st h ope h e w ould n't — but it w as n o
good. “ A noth er h alf -g ia n t, o ' c o urs e !” s a id H ag rid .
“'O w d are y ou!” sh rie k ed M ad am e M ax im e. H er v oic e e x plo ded th ro ugh
th e p eacefu l n ig ht a ir lik e a f o ghorn ; b eh in d h im . H arry h eard F le u r a n d R oger
fa ll o ut o f th eir ro se b ush . “ I 'a v e n ev air b een m ore in su lte d in m y lif e ! 'A lf -
gia n t? M oi? I 'a v e— I 'a v e b ig b ones!”
She s to rm ed a w ay ; g re at m ultic o lo re d s w arm s o f f a ir ie s r o se in to th e a ir a s
sh e p asse d , a n grily p ush in g a sid e b ush es. H ag rid w as s till s ittin g o n th e b en ch ,
sta rin g a fte r h er. It w as m uch to o d ark to m ak e o ut h is e x pre ssio n. T hen , a fte r
ab out a m in ute , h e s to od u p a n d s tr o de a w ay, n ot b ack to th e c astle , b ut o ff o ut
in to t h e d ark g ro unds i n t h e d ir e ctio n o f h is c ab in .
“C 'm on,” H arry s a id , v ery q uie tly t o R on. “ L et's g o… ”
But R on d id n't m ove.
“W hat's u p?” s a id H arry , l o okin g a t h im .
Ron l o oked a ro und a t H arry , h is e x pre ssio n v ery s e rio us i n deed .
“D id y ou k now ?” h e w his p ere d . “ A bout H ag rid b ein g h alf -g ia n t? ”
“N o,” H arry s a id , s h ru ggin g. “ S o w hat? ”
He k new i m med ia te ly , f ro m t h e l o ok R on w as g iv in g h im , t h at h e w as o nce
ag ain re v ealin g his ig nora n ce of th e w iz ard in g w orld . B ro ught up by th e
Durs le y s, th ere w ere m an y th in gs th at w iz ard s to ok fo r gra n te d th at w ere
re v ela tio ns to H arry , b ut th ese s u rp ris e s h ad b eco m e f e w er w ith e ach s u ccessiv e
year. N ow , h ow ev er, h e c o uld te ll th at m ost w iz ard s w ould n ot h av e s a id “ S o
what? ” u pon f in din g o ut t h at o ne o f t h eir f rie n ds h ad a g ia n te ss f o r a m oth er.
“I'l l e x pla in i n sid e,” s a id R on q uie tly , “ c'm on… ”
Fle u r an d R oger D av ie s h ad d is a p peare d , p ro bab ly in to a m ore p riv ate
clu m p o f b ush es. H arry a n d R on r e tu rn ed to th e G re at H all. P arv ati a n d P ad m a
were n ow s ittin g a t a d is ta n t t a b le w ith a w hole c ro w d o f B eau xbato ns b oys, a n d
Herm io ne w as o nce m ore d an cin g w ith K ru m . H arry a n d R on s a t d ow n a t a t a b le
fa r r e m oved f ro m t h e d an ce f lo or.
“S o?” H arry p ro m pte d R on. “ W hat's t h e p ro ble m w ith g ia n ts ? ”
“W ell, t h ey 'r e … th ey 'r e … ” R on s tr u ggle d f o r w ord s. “ … n ot v ery n ic e,” h e
fin is h ed l a m ely .

“W ho c are s? ” H arry s a id . “ T here 's n oth in g w ro ng w ith H ag rid !”
“I k now th ere is n 't , b ut… b lim ey, n o w onder h e k eep s it q uie t,” R on s a id ,
sh ak in g h is h ead . “ I a lw ay s th ought h e'd g ot in th e w ay o f a b ad E ngorg em en t
Charm w hen h e w as a k id o r s o m eth in g. D id n't l ik e t o m en tio n i t… ”
“B ut w hat's i t m atte r i f h is m oth er w as a g ia n te ss? ” s a id H arry .
“W ell… no one w ho know s him w ill care , 'c o s th ey 'l l know he's not
dan gero us,” s a id R on s lo w ly . “ B ut… H arry , th ey 'r e ju st v ic io us, g ia n ts . I t's lik e
Hag rid sa id , it's in th eir natu re s, th ey 'r e lik e tr o lls … th ey ju st lik e killin g,
ev ery one k now s t h at. T here a re n 't a n y l e ft i n B rita in n ow , t h ough.”
“W hat h ap pen ed t o t h em ?”
“W ell, t h ey w ere d yin g o ut a n yw ay, a n d t h en l o ad s g ot t h em se lv es k ille d b y
Auro rs . T here 'r e su ppose d to be gia n ts ab ro ad , th ough… T hey hid e out in
mounta in s m ostly … ”
“I d on't k now w ho M ax im e th in ks sh e's k id din g,” H arry sa id , w atc h in g
Mad am e M ax im e sittin g alo ne at th e ju dges' ta b le , lo okin g v ery so m ber. “If
Hag rid 's h alf -g ia n t, s h e d efin ite ly i s . B ig b ones… t h e o nly t h in g t h at's g ot b ig ger
bones t h an h er i s a d in osa u r.”
Harry a n d R on s p en t th e re st o f th e b all d is c u ssin g g ia n ts in th eir c o rn er,
neith er o f th em h av in g a n y in clin atio n to d an ce. H arry tr ie d n ot to w atc h C ho
an d C ed ric t o o m uch ; i t g av e h im a s tr o ng d esir e t o k ic k s o m eth in g.
When t h e W eir d S is te rs f in is h ed p la y in g a t m id nig ht, e v ery one g av e t h em a
la st, lo ud r o und o f a p pla u se a n d s ta rte d to w en d th eir w ay in to th e e n tr a n ce h all.
Man y p eo ple w ere e x pre ssin g th e w is h th at th e b all c o uld h av e g one o n lo nger,
but H arry w as p erfe ctly h ap py to b e g oin g to b ed ; a s fa r a s h e w as c o ncern ed ,
th e e v en in g h ad n't b een m uch f u n.
Out i n t h e e n tr a n ce h all, H arry a n d R on s a w H erm io ne s a y in g g ood n ig ht t o
Kru m b efo re h e w en t b ack to th e D urm str a n g s h ip . S he g av e R on a v ery c o ld
lo ok a n d sw ep t p ast h im u p th e m arb le sta ir c ase w ith out sp eak in g. H arry a n d
Ron f o llo w ed h er, b ut h alf w ay u p t h e s ta ir c ase H arry h eard s o m eo ne c allin g h im .
“H ey -H arry !”
It w as C ed ric D ig gory . H arry c o uld s e e C ho w aitin g f o r h im i n t h e e n tr a n ce
hall b elo w .
“Y eah ?” s a id H arry c o ld ly a s C ed ric r a n u p t h e s ta ir s t o w ard h im .
Ced ric lo oked a s th ough h e d id n't w an t to s a y w hate v er it w as in fro nt o f
Ron, w ho s h ru gged , l o okin g b ad -te m pere d , a n d c o ntin ued t o c lim b t h e s ta ir s .
“L is te n … ” C ed ric lo w ere d h is v oic e a s R on d is a p peare d . “ I o w e y ou o ne
fo r te llin g m e a b out th e d ra g ons. Y ou k now th at g old en e g g? D oes y ours w ail
when y ou o pen i t? ”
“Y eah ,” s a id H arry .

“W ell… t a k e a b ath , o kay ?”
“W hat? ”
“T ak e a b ath , a n d— er— ta k e th e e g g w ith y ou, a n d— er— ju st m ull th in gs
over i n t h e h ot w ate r. I t'l l h elp y ou t h in k… T ru st m e.”
Harry s ta re d a t h im .
“T ell y ou w hat,” C ed ric s a id , “ u se th e p re fe cts ' b ath ro om . F ourth d oor to
th e le ft o f th at s ta tu e o f B oris th e B ew ild ere d o n th e f if th f lo or. P assw ord 's 'p in e
fre sh . ' G otta g o … wan t t o s a y g ood n ig ht— ”
He g rin ned a t H arry a g ain a n d h urrie d b ack d ow n t h e s ta ir s t o C ho.
Harry w alk ed b ack to G ry ff in dor T ow er a lo ne. T hat h ad b een e x tr e m ely
str a n ge a d vic e. W hy w ould a b ath h elp h im to w ork o ut w hat th e w ailin g e g g
mean t? W as C ed ric p ullin g h is le g ? W as h e tr y in g to m ak e H arry lo ok lik e a
fo ol, s o C ho w ould l ik e h im e v en m ore b y c o m paris o n?
The F at L ad y an d h er frie n d V i w ere sn oozin g in th e p ic tu re o ver th e
portr a it h ole . H arry h ad to y ell “ F air y lig hts !” b efo re h e w oke th em u p, a n d
when h e d id , th ey w ere e x tr e m ely ir rita te d . H e c lim bed in to th e c o m mon ro om
an d f o und R on a n d H erm io ne h av in g a b la zin g r o w . S ta n din g t e n f e et a p art, t h ey
were b ello w in g a t e ach o th er, e ach s c arle t i n t h e f a ce.
“W ell, i f y ou d on't l ik e i t, y ou k now w hat t h e s o lu tio n i s , d on't y ou?” y elle d
Herm io ne; h er h air w as c o m in g d ow n o ut o f its e le g an t b un n ow , a n d h er fa ce
was s c re w ed u p i n a n ger.
“O h y eah ?” R on y elle d b ack . “ W hat's t h at? ”
“N ex t t im e t h ere 's a b all, a sk m e b efo re s o m eo ne e ls e d oes, a n d n ot a s a l a st
re so rt! ”
Ron m outh ed s o undle ssly lik e a g old fis h o ut o f w ate r a s H erm io ne tu rn ed
on h er h eel a n d sto rm ed u p th e g ir ls ' sta ir c ase to b ed . R on tu rn ed to lo ok a t
Harry .
“W ell,” he sp utte re d , lo okin g th unders tr u ck , “w ell— th at ju st pro ves—
co m ple te ly m is se d t h e p oin t— ”
Harry d id n't s a y a n yth in g. H e lik ed b ein g b ack o n s p eak in g te rm s w ith R on
to o m uch to s p eak h is m in d r ig h t n ow — but h e s o m eh ow th ought th at H erm io ne
had g otte n t h e p oin t m uch b ette r t h an R on h ad .

C H APT ER T W EN TY-F O UR
R IT A S K EETER 'S S C O OP
Every body g ot u p la te o n B oxin g D ay. T he G ry ff in dor c o m mon r o om w as
m uch quie te r th an it had been la te ly , m an y yaw ns punctu atin g th e la zy
c o nvers a tio ns. H erm io ne's h air w as b ush y a g ain ; s h e c o nfe sse d t o H arry t h at s h e
h ad u se d lib era l a m ounts o f S le ek eazy 's H air P otio n o n it fo r th e b all, “ b ut it's
w ay to o m uch b oth er to d o e v ery d ay,” sh e sa id m atte r- o f-fa ctly , sc ra tc h in g a
p urrin g C ro oksh an ks b eh in d t h e e ars .
Ron a n d H erm io ne s e em ed to h av e r e ach ed a n u nsp oken a g re em en t n ot to
d is c u ss th eir a rg um en t. T hey w ere b ein g q uite frie n dly to e ach o th er, th ough
o ddly fo rm al. R on an d H arry w aste d n o tim e in te llin g H erm io ne ab out th e
c o nvers a tio n th ey h ad o verh eard b etw een M ad am e M ax im e an d H ag rid , b ut
H erm io ne d id n't s e em to fin d th e n ew s th at H ag rid w as a h alf -g ia n t n early a s
s h ock in g a s R on d id .
“W ell, I th ought h e m ust b e,” s h e s a id , s h ru ggin g. “ I k new h e c o uld n't b e
p ure g ia n t b ecau se th ey 'r e a b out tw en ty fe et ta ll. B ut h onestly , a ll th is h yste ria
a b out g ia n ts . T hey c an 't a ll b e h orrib le … It's th e sa m e so rt o f p re ju dic e th at
p eo ple h av e t o w ard w ere w olv es… I t's j u st b ig otr y , i s n 't i t? ”
Ron lo oked a s th ough h e w ould h av e lik ed to r e p ly s c ath in gly , b ut p erh ap s
h e d id n't w an t a n oth er r o w , b ecau se h e c o nte n te d h im se lf w ith s h ak in g h is h ead
d is b elie v in gly w hile H erm io ne w asn 't l o okin g.
It w as tim e n ow to th in k o f th e h om ew ork th ey h ad n eg le cte d d urin g th e
f ir s t w eek o f th e h olid ay s. E very body s e em ed to b e f e elin g r a th er f la t n ow th at
C hris tm as w as o ver— ev ery body e x cep t H arry , th at is , w ho w as s ta rtin g (o nce
a g ain ) t o f e el s lig htly n erv ous.
The tr o uble w as th at F eb ru ary th e tw en ty -fo urth lo oked a lo t c lo se r fro m
t h is s id e o f C hris tm as, a n d h e s till h ad n't d one a n yth in g a b out w ork in g o ut th e
c lu e in sid e th e g old en e g g. H e th ere fo re s ta rte d ta k in g th e e g g o ut o f h is tr u nk
e v ery t im e h e w en t u p t o t h e d orm ito ry , o pen in g i t, a n d l is te n in g i n te n tly , h opin g
t h at th is tim e it w ould m ak e s o m e s e n se . H e s tr a in ed to th in k w hat th e s o und
r e m in ded him of, ap art fro m th ir ty m usic al sa w s, but he had nev er heard
a n yth in g e ls e lik e it. H e c lo se d th e e g g, s h ook it v ig oro usly , a n d o pen ed it a g ain
t o s e e if th e s o und h ad c h an ged , b ut it h ad n't . H e tr ie d a sk in g th e e g g q uestio ns,
s h outin g o ver all th e w ailin g, b ut n oth in g h ap pen ed . H e ev en th re w th e eg g
a cro ss t h e r o om — th ough h e h ad n't r e ally e x pecte d t h at t o h elp .
Harry h ad n ot fo rg otte n th e h in t th at C ed ric h ad g iv en h im , b ut h is le ss-

th an -frie n dly f e elin gs t o w ard C ed ric j u st n ow m ean t t h at h e w as k een n ot t o t a k e
his h elp if h e c o uld a v oid it. In a n y c ase , it s e em ed to h im th at if C ed ric h ad
re ally w an te d to g iv e H arry a h an d, h e w ould h av e b een a lo t m ore e x plic it. H e,
Harry , h ad to ld C ed ric e x actly w hat w as c o m in g in th e fir s t ta sk — an d C ed ric 's
id ea o f a f a ir e x ch an ge h ad b een t o t e ll H arry t o t a k e a b ath . W ell, h e d id n't n eed
th at s o rt o f r u bbis h y h elp — not f ro m s o m eo ne w ho k ep t w alk in g d ow n c o rrid ors
han d in h an d w ith C ho, a n yw ay. A nd s o th e fir s t d ay o f th e n ew te rm a rriv ed ,
an d H arry s e t o ff t o l e sso ns, w eig hed d ow n w ith b ooks, p arc h m en t, a n d q uills a s
usu al, b ut a ls o w ith t h e l u rk in g w orry o f t h e e g g h eav y i n h is s to m ach , a s t h ough
he w ere c arry in g t h at a ro und w ith h im t o o.
Snow w as s till th ic k u pon th e g ro unds, a n d th e g re en house w in dow s w ere
co vere d i n c o nden sa tio n s o t h ic k t h at t h ey c o uld n't s e e o ut o f t h em i n H erb olo gy.
Nobody w as l o okin g f o rw ard t o C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s m uch i n t h is w eath er,
th ough a s R on s a id , th e s k re w ts w ould p ro bab ly w arm th em u p n ic ely , e ith er b y
ch asin g t h em , o r b la stin g o ff s o f o rc efu lly t h at H ag rid 's c ab in w ould c atc h f ir e .
When th ey a rriv ed a t H ag rid 's c ab in , h ow ev er, th ey f o und a n e ld erly w itc h
with c lo se ly c ro pped g ra y h air a n d a v ery p ro m in en t c h in sta n din g b efo re h is
fro nt d oor.
“H urry u p, n ow , t h e b ell r a n g f iv e m in ute s a g o,” s h e b ark ed a t t h em a s t h ey
str u ggle d t o w ard h er t h ro ugh t h e s n ow .
“W ho'r e y ou?” s a id R on, s ta rin g a t h er. “ W here s H ag rid ?”
“M y nam e is Pro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k,” sh e sa id bris k ly . “I am your
te m pora ry C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s t e ach er.”
“W here 's H ag rid ?” H arry r e p eate d l o udly .
“H e i s i n dis p ose d ,” s a id P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k s h ortly .
Soft a n d u nple asa n t l a u ghte r r e ach ed H arry s e ars . H e t u rn ed ; D ra co M alf o y
an d th e r e st o f th e S ly th erin s w ere jo in in g th e c la ss. A ll o f th em lo oked g le efu l,
an d n one o f t h em l o oked s u rp ris e d t o s e e P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k.
“T his w ay, p le ase ,” s a id P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k, a n d s h e s tr o de o ff a ro und
th e p ad dock w here th e B eau xbato ns h ors e s w ere sh iv erin g. H arry , R on, an d
Herm io ne f o llo w ed h er, lo okin g b ack o ver th eir s h ould ers a t H ag rid 's c ab in . A ll
th e c u rta in s w ere c lo se d . W as H ag rid i n t h ere , a lo ne a n d i ll?
“W hat's w ro ng w ith H ag rid ?” H arry sa id , hurry in g to catc h up w ith
Pro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k.
“N ev er y ou m in d,” s h e s a id a s t h ough s h e t h ought h e w as b ein g n osy .
“I d o m in d, t h ough,” s a id H arry h otly . “ W hat's u p w ith h im ?”
Pro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k a cte d a s th ough sh e c o uld n't h ear h im . S he le d
th em past th e pad dock w here th e huge B eau xbato ns hors e s w ere sta n din g,
huddle d a g ain st th e c o ld , a n d to w ard a tr e e o n th e e d ge o f th e fo re st, w here a

la rg e a n d b eau tif u l u nic o rn w as t e th ere d .
Man y o f t h e g ir ls “ o oooohed !” a t t h e s ig ht o f t h e u nic o rn .
“O h it's so b eau tif u l! ” w his p ere d L av en der B ro w n. “ H ow d id sh e g et it?
They 'r e s u ppose d t o b e r e ally h ard t o c atc h !”
The u nic o rn w as s o b rig htly w hite i t m ad e t h e s n ow a ll a ro und l o ok g ra y. I t
was p aw in g th e g ro und n erv ously w ith its g old en h ooves a n d th ro w in g b ack its
horn ed h ead .
“B oys k eep b ack !” b ark ed P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k, th ro w in g o ut a n a rm
an d c atc h in g H arry h ard in th e c h est. “ T hey p re fe r th e w om an 's to uch , u nic o rn s.
Gir ls t o t h e f ro nt, a n d a p pro ach w ith c are , c o m e o n, e asy d oes i t… ”
She a n d th e g ir ls w alk ed slo w ly fo rw ard to w ard th e u nic o rn , le av in g th e
boys sta n din g near th e pad dock fe n ce, w atc h in g. The m om en t Pro fe sso r
Gru bbly -P la n k w as o ut o f e ars h ot. H arry t u rn ed t o R on.
“W hat d 'y ou r e ck ons w ro ng w ith h im ? Y ou d on't t h in k a s k re w t— ?”
“O h h e h asn 't b een a tta ck ed , P otte r, if th at's w hat y ou'r e th in kin g,” sa id
Malf o y s o ftly . “ N o, h e's j u st t o o a sh am ed t o s h ow h is b ig , u gly f a ce.”
“W hat d 'y ou m ean ?” s a id H arry s h arp ly .
Malf o y p ut h is h an d in sid e th e p ock et o f h is r o bes a n d p ulle d o ut a f o ld ed
pag e o f n ew sp rin t.
“T here y ou g o,” h e s a id . “ H ate t o b re ak i t t o y ou. P otte r… ”
He s m ir k ed a s H arry s n atc h ed th e p ag e, u nfo ld ed it, a n d r e ad it, w ith R on,
Seam us, D ean , a n d N ev ille lo okin g o ver h is s h ould er. It w as a n a rtic le to pped
with a p ic tu re o f H ag rid l o okin g e x tr e m ely s h if ty .
DUM BLED ORE'S G IA NT M IS TA KE
Alb us Dum ble d ore , eccen tr ic Head m aste r of Hogw arts Sch ool of
Witc h cra ft an d W iz ard ry , has nev er been afra id to m ak e co ntr o vers ia l sta ff
ap poin tm en ts , w rite s R ita S keete r, S pecia l C orre sp onden t. In S ep te m ber o f th is
year, h e h ir e d A la sto r “ M ad -E ye” M oody, th e n oto rio usly jin x-h ap py e x -A uro r,
to te ach D efe n se A gain st th e D ark A rts , a d ecis io n th at cau se d m an y ra is e d
ey eb ro w s at th e M in is tr y of M ag ic , giv en M oody's w ell- k now n hab it of
atta ck in g a n ybody w ho m ak es a su dden m ovem en t in h is p re se n ce. M ad -E ye
Moody, h ow ev er, lo oks re sp onsib le a n d k in dly w hen s e t b esid e th e p art- h um an
Dum ble d ore e m plo ys t o t e ach C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s.
Rubeu s H ag rid , w ho a d m its to b ein g e x pelle d fro m H ogw arts in h is th ir d
year, h as e n jo yed th e p ositio n o f g am ek eep er a t th e sc h ool e v er sin ce, a jo b
se cu re d f o r h im b y D um ble d ore . L ast y ear, h ow ev er, H ag rid u se d h is m yste rio us
in flu en ce o ver th e h ead m aste r to s e cu re th e a d ditio nal p ost o f C are o f M ag ic al
Cre atu re s t e ach er, o ver t h e h ead s o f m an y b ette r- q ualif ie d c an did ate s.
An a la rm in gly la rg e a n d f e ro cio us-lo okin g m an , H ag rid h as b een u sin g h is

new fo und au th ority to te rrif y th e stu den ts in his care w ith a su ccessio n of
horrif ic cre atu re s. W hile D um ble d ore tu rn s a b lin d ey e, H ag rid h as m aim ed
se v era l pupils durin g a se rie s of le sso ns th at m an y ad m it to bein g “v ery
frig hte n in g.”
'I w as a tta ck ed b y a h ip pogrif f , a n d m y f rie n d V in cen t C ra b be g ot a b ad b ite
off a flo bberw orm ,” sa y s D ra co M alf o y, a fo urth -y ear stu den t. “W e all h ate
Hag rid , b ut w e'r e j u st t o o s c are d t o s a y a n yth in g.”
Hag rid h as n o in te n tio n o f c easin g h is c am paig n o f in tim id atio n, h ow ev er.
In c o nvers a tio n w ith a D aily P ro phet re p orte r la st m onth , h e a d m itte d b re ed in g
cre atu re s he has dubbed “B la st- E nded Skre w ts ,” hig hly dan gero us cro sse s
betw een m an ti- c o re s an d fir e -c ra b s. T he cre atio n of new bre ed s of m ag ic al
cre atu re i s , o f c o urs e , a n a ctiv ity u su ally c lo se ly o bse rv ed b y t h e D ep artm en t f o r
th e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l o f M ag ic al C re atu re s. H ag rid , h ow ev er, c o nsid ers
him se lf t o b e a b ove s u ch p etty r e str ic tio ns.
“I w as j u st h av in g s o m e f u n,” h e s a y s, b efo re h astily c h an gin g t h e s u bje ct.
As if th is w ere n ot e n ough, th e D aily P ro phet h as n ow u nearth ed e v id en ce
th at H ag rid i s n ot— as h e h as a lw ay s p re te n ded — a p ure -b lo od w iz ard . H e i s n ot,
in fa ct, e v en p ure h um an . H is m oth er, w e c an e x clu siv ely re v eal, is n one o th er
th an t h e g ia n te ss F rid w ulf a , w hose w here ab outs a re c u rre n tly u nknow n.
Blo odth ir s ty an d bru ta l, th e gia n ts bro ught th em se lv es to th e poin t of
ex tin ctio n b y w arrin g a m ongst th em se lv es d urin g th e la st c en tu ry . T he h an dfu l
th at re m ain ed jo in ed th e ra n ks of H e-W ho-M ust- N ot- B e-N am ed , an d w ere
re sp onsib le f o r s o m e o f t h e w ors t m ass M uggle k illin gs o f h is r e ig n o f t e rro r.
While m an y o f th e g ia n ts w ho s e rv ed H e-W ho-M ust- N ot- B e-N am ed w ere
kille d b y A uro rs w ork in g a g ain st t h e D ark S id e, F rid w ulf a w as n ot a m ong t h em .
It i s p ossib le s h e e sc ap ed t o o ne o f t h e g ia n t c o m munitie s s till e x is tin g i n f o re ig n
mounta in r a n ges. I f h is a n tic s d urin g C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s le sso ns a re a n y
guid e, h ow ev er, F rid -w ulf a 's s o n a p pears t o h av e i n herite d h er b ru ta l n atu re .
In a b iz arre tw is t, H ag rid is re p ute d to h av e d ev elo ped a c lo se frie n dsh ip
with th e b oy w ho b ro ught a ro und Y ou-K now -W ho's fa ll fro m p ow er— th ere b y
driv in g H ag rid 's o w n m oth er, lik e th e r e st o f Y ou-K now -W ho's s u pporte rs , in to
hid in g. P erh ap s H arry P otte r is u naw are o f th e u nple asa n t tr u th a b out h is la rg e
frie n d— but A lb us D um ble d ore su re ly h as a d uty to e n su re th at H arry P otte r,
alo ng w ith h is fe llo w s tu den ts , is w arn ed a b out th e d an gers o f a sso cia tin g w ith
part- g ia n ts .
Harry fin is h ed re ad in g a n d lo oked u p a t R on, w hose m outh w as h an gin g
open .
“H ow d id s h e f in d o ut? ” h e w his p ere d .
But t h at w asn 't w hat w as b oth erin g H arry .

“W hat d 'y ou m ean , 'w e a ll h ate H ag rid '? ” H arry s p at a t M alf o y. “ W hat's t h is
ru bbis h ab out him ”— he poin te d at Cra b be— ”g ettin g a bad bite off a
flo bberw orm ? T hey h av en 't e v en g ot t e eth !”
Cra b be w as s n ig gerin g, a p pare n tly v ery p le ase d w ith h im se lf .
“W ell, I th in k th is sh ould p ut an en d to th e o af's te ach in g care er,” sa id
Malf o y, h is ey es g lin tin g. “H alf -g ia n t… an d th ere w as m e th in kin g h e'd ju st
sw allo w ed a b ottle o f S kele -G ro w hen h e w as y oung… N one o f th e m um mie s
an d d ad die s a re g oin g to lik e th is a t a ll… T hey 'l l b e w orrie d h e'l l e at th eir k id s,
ha, h a… ”
“Y ou-”
“A re y ou p ay in g a tte n tio n o ver t h ere ?”
Pro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n ks v oic e c arrie d o ver to th e b oys; th e g ir ls w ere a ll
clu ste re d a ro und th e u nic o rn n ow , s tr o kin g it. H arry w as s o a n gry th at th e D aily
Pro phet a rtic le s h ook i n h is h an ds a s h e t u rn ed t o s ta re u nse ein gly a t t h e u nic o rn ,
whose m an y m ag ic al p ro pertie s P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k w as n ow e n um era tin g
in a l o ud v oic e, s o t h at t h e b oys c o uld h ear t o o.
“I h ope sh e sta y s, th at w om an !” sa id P arv ati P atil w hen th e le sso n h ad
en ded a n d t h ey w ere a ll h ead in g b ack t o t h e c astle f o r l u nch . “ T hat's m ore w hat I
th ought C are of M ag ic al C re atu re s w ould be lik e… pro per cre atu re s lik e
unic o rn s, n ot m onste rs … ”
“W hat a b out H ag rid ?” H arry s a id a n grily a s t h ey w en t u p t h e s te p s.
“W hat ab out him ?” sa id Parv ati in a hard voic e. “H e can still be
gam ek eep er, c an 't h e?”
Parv ati h ad b een v ery c o ol t o w ard H arry s in ce t h e b all. H e s u ppose d t h at h e
ought to h av e p aid h er a b it m ore a tte n tio n, b ut s h e s e em ed to h av e h ad a g ood
tim e a ll th e s a m e. S he w as c erta in ly te llin g a n ybody w ho w ould lis te n th at s h e
had m ad e a rra n gem en ts t o m eet t h e b oy f ro m B eau xbato ns i n H ogsm ead e o n t h e
nex t w eek en d t r ip .
“T hat w as a re ally g ood le sso n,” s a id H erm io ne a s th ey e n te re d th e G re at
Hall. “ I d id n't k now h alf th e th in gs P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k to ld u s a b out u ni
—”
“L ook at th is !” H arry sn arle d , an d h e sh oved th e D aily P ro phet artic le
under H erm io ne's n ose .
Herm io ne's m outh f e ll o pen a s s h e r e ad . H er r e actio n w as e x actly th e s a m e
as R on's .
“H ow d id th at h orrib le S keete r w om an fin d o ut? Y ou d on't th in k H ag rid
to ld h er? ”
“N o,” s a id H arry , l e ad in g t h e w ay o ver t o t h e G ry ff in dor t a b le a n d t h ro w in g
him se lf i n to a c h air , f u rio us. “ H e n ev er e v en t o ld u s, d id h e? I r e ck on s h e w as s o

mad h e w ould n't g iv e h er lo ad s o f h orrib le s tu ff a b out m e, s h e w en t fe rre tin g
aro und t o g et h im b ack .”
“M ay be s h e h eard h im t e llin g M ad am e M ax im e a t t h e b all,” s a id H erm io ne
quie tly .
“W e'd h av e s e en h er i n t h e g ard en !” s a id R on. “ A nyw ay, s h e's n ot s u ppose d
to c o m e i n to s c h ool a n ym ore , H ag rid s a id D um ble d ore b an ned h er… ”
“M ay be sh e's got an In vis ib ility C lo ak ,” sa id H arry , la d lin g ch ic k en
casse ro le o nto h is p la te a n d s p la sh in g it e v ery w here in h is a n ger. “ S ort o f th in g
sh e'd d o, i s n 't i t, h id e i n b ush es l is te n in g t o p eo ple .”
“L ik e y ou a n d R on d id , y ou m ean ,” s a id H erm io ne.
“W e w ere n 't t r y in g t o h ear h im !” s a id R on i n dig nan tly . “ W e d id n't h av e a n y
ch oic e! T he s tu pid p ra t, ta lk in g a b out h is g ia n te ss m oth er w here a n yone c o uld
hav e h eard h im !”
“W e'v e g ot to g o a n d s e e h im ,” s a id H arry . “ T his e v en in g, a fte r D iv in atio n.
Tell h im w e w an t h im b ack … y ou d o w an t h im b ack ?” h e s h ot a t H erm io ne.
“I— well, I'm n ot g oin g to p re te n d it d id n't m ak e a n ic e c h an ge, h av in g a
pro per C are o f M ag ic al C re atu re s le sso n fo r o nce— but I d o w an t H ag rid b ack ,
of c o urs e I d o!” H erm io ne a d ded h astily , q uailin g u nder H arry 's f u rio us s ta re .
So th at e v en in g a fte r d in ner, th e th re e o f th em le ft th e c astle o nce m ore a n d
wen t d ow n th ro ugh th e fro zen g ro unds to H ag rid 's c ab in . T hey k nock ed , a n d
Fan g's b oom in g b ark s a n sw ere d .
“H ag rid , i t's u s!” H arry s h oute d , p oundin g o n t h e d oor. “ O pen u p!”
Hag rid d id n't a n sw er. T hey c o uld h ear F an g s c ra tc h in g a t t h e d oor, w hin in g,
but it d id n't o pen . T hey h am mere d o n it fo r te n m ore m in ute s; R on e v en w en t
an d b an ged o n o ne o f t h e w in dow s, b ut t h ere w as n o r e sp onse .
“W hat's h e a v oid in g u s f o r? ” H erm io ne s a id w hen t h ey h ad f in ally g iv en u p
an d w ere w alk in g b ack to th e s c h ool. “ H e s u re ly d oesn 't th in k w e'd c are a b out
him b ein g h alf -g ia n t? ”
But it s e em ed th at H ag rid d id c are . T hey d id n't s e e a s ig n o f h im a ll w eek .
He d id n't a p pear a t th e s ta ff ta b le a t m ealtim es, th ey d id n't s e e h im g oin g a b out
his g am ek eep er d utie s o n t h e g ro unds, a n d P ro fe sso r G ru bbly -P la n k c o ntin ued t o
ta k e th e C are of M ag ic al C re atu re s cla sse s. M alf o y w as glo atin g at ev ery
possib le o pportu nity .
“M is sin g y our h alf -b re ed p al? ” h e k ep t w his p erin g t o H arry w hen ev er t h ere
was a te ach er a ro und, s o th at h e w as s a fe f ro m H arry 's r e ta lia tio n. “ M is sin g th e
ele p han t- m an ?”
There w as a H ogsm ead e v is it h alf w ay t h ro ugh J a n uary . H erm io ne w as v ery
su rp ris e d t h at H arry w as g oin g t o g o.
“I ju st th ought y ou'd w an t to ta k e a d van ta g e o f th e c o m mon ro om b ein g

quie t,” s h e s a id . “ R eally g et t o w ork o n t h at e g g.”
“O h I — I r e ck on I 'v e g ot a p re tty g ood i d ea w hat i t's a b out n ow ,” H arry l ie d .
“H av e y ou r e ally ?” s a id H erm io ne, l o okin g i m pre sse d . “ W ell d one!”
Harry s in sid es g av e a g uilty s q uir m , b ut h e ig nore d th em . H e s till h ad f iv e
week s to w ork o ut th at e g g c lu e, a fte r a ll, a n d th at w as a g es… w here as if h e
wen t in to H ogsm ead e, h e m ig ht ru n in to H ag rid , a n d g et a c h an ce to p ers u ad e
him t o c o m e b ack .
He, R on, an d H erm io ne le ft th e castle to geth er o n S atu rd ay an d se t o ff
th ro ugh th e c o ld , w et g ro unds to w ard th e g ate s. A s th ey p asse d th e D urm str a n g
sh ip m oore d i n t h e l a k e, t h ey s a w V ik to r K ru m e m erg e o nto t h e d eck , d re sse d i n
noth in g b ut s w im min g tr u nks. H e w as v ery s k in ny in deed , b ut a p pare n tly a lo t
to ugher th an he lo oked , becau se he clim bed up onto th e sid e of th e sh ip ,
str e tc h ed o ut h is a rm s, a n d d iv ed , r ig ht i n to t h e l a k e.
“H e's m ad !” s a id H arry , s ta rin g a t K ru m s d ark h ead a s it b obbed o ut in to
th e m id dle o f t h e l a k e. “ It m ust b e f re ezin g, i t's J a n uary !”
“It's a lo t c o ld er w here h e c o m es f ro m ,” s a id H erm io ne. “ I s u ppose it f e els
quite w arm t o h im .”
“Y eah , b ut th ere 's s till th e g ia n t s q uid ,” s a id R on. H e d id n't s o und a n xio us
—if an yth in g, h e so unded h opefu l. H erm io ne n otic ed h is to ne o f v oic e an d
fro w ned .
“H e's re ally n ic e, y ou k now ,” sh e sa id . “ H e's n ot a t a ll lik e y ou'd th in k,
co m in g f ro m D urm str a n g. H e l ik es i t m uch b ette r h ere , h e t o ld m e.”
Ron sa id n oth in g. H e h ad n't m en tio ned V ik to r K ru m sin ce th e b all, b ut
Harry h ad fo und a m in ia tu re arm u nder h is b ed o n B oxin g D ay, w hic h h ad
lo oked v ery m uch as th ough it h ad b een sn ap ped o ff a sm all m odel fig ure
wearin g B ulg aria n Q uid ditc h r o bes.
Harry k ep t h is e y es sk in ned fo r a sig n o f H ag rid a ll th e w ay d ow n th e
slu sh y H ig h S tr e et, a n d s u ggeste d a v is it to th e T hre e B ro om stic k s o nce h e h ad
asc erta in ed t h at H ag rid w as n ot i n a n y o f t h e s h ops.
The p ub w as a s c ro w ded a s e v er, b ut o ne q uic k l o ok a ro und a t a ll t h e t a b le s
to ld H arry th at H ag rid w asn 't th ere . H eart s in kin g, h e w en t u p to th e b ar w ith
Ron an d H erm io ne, ord ere d th re e butte rb eers fro m M ad am R osm erta , an d
th ought g lo om ily th at h e m ig ht ju st a s w ell h av e s ta y ed b eh in d a n d lis te n ed to
th e e g g w ailin g a fte r a ll.
“D oesn 't he ev er go in to th e off ic e?” H erm io ne w his p ere d su dden ly .
“L ook!”
She p oin te d in to th e m ir ro r b eh in d th e b ar, a n d H arry s a w L udo B ag m an
re fle cte d t h ere , s ittin g i n a s h ad ow y c o rn er w ith a b unch o f g oblin s. B ag m an w as
ta lk in g v ery fa st in a lo w v oic e to th e g oblin s, all o f w hom h ad th eir arm s

cro sse d a n d w ere l o okin g r a th er m en acin g.
It w as in deed o dd. H arry th ought, th at B ag m an w as h ere at th e T hre e
Bro om stic k s o n a w eek en d w hen th ere w as n o T riw iz ard e v en t, a n d th ere fo re n o
ju dgin g to b e d one. H e w atc h ed B ag m an in th e m ir ro r. H e w as lo okin g s tr a in ed
ag ain , q uite a s s tr a in ed a s h e h ad th at n ig ht in th e fo re st b efo re th e D ark M ark
had a p peare d . B ut ju st th en B ag m an g la n ced o ver a t th e b ar, sa w H arry , a n d
sto od u p.
“In a m om en t, i n a m om en t! ” H arry h eard h im s a y b ru sq uely t o t h e g oblin s,
an d B ag m an h urrie d th ro ugh th e p ub to w ard H arry , h is b oyis h g rin b ack in
pla ce.
“H arry !” h e s a id . “ H ow a re y ou? B een h opin g to r u n in to y ou! E very th in g
goin g a ll r ig ht? ”
“F in e, t h an ks,” s a id H arry .
“W onder if I co uld hav e a quic k , priv ate w ord , H arry ?” sa id B ag m an
eag erly . “ Y ou c o uld n't g iv e u s a m om en t, y ou t w o, c o uld y ou?”
“E r— okay,” s a id R on, a n d h e a n d H erm io ne w en t o ff t o f in d a t a b le .
Bag m an l e d H arry a lo ng t h e b ar t o t h e e n d f u rth est f ro m M ad am R osm erta .
“W ell, I ju st th ought I'd co ngra tu la te you ag ain on your sp le n did
perfo rm an ce a g ain st t h at H orn ta il, H arry ,” s a id B ag m an . “ R eally s u perb .”
“T han ks,” s a id H arry , b ut h e k new th is c o uld n't b e a ll th at B ag m an w an te d
to s a y, b ecau se h e c o uld h av e c o ngra tu la te d H arry i n f ro nt o f R on a n d H erm io ne.
Bag m an d id n't s e em in a n y p artic u la r r u sh to s p ill th e b ean s, th ough. H arry s a w
him g la n ce in to th e m ir ro r o ver th e b ar a t th e g oblin s, w ho w ere a ll w atc h in g
him a n d H arry i n s ile n ce t h ro ugh t h eir d ark , s la n tin g e y es.
“A bso lu te n ig htm are ,” sa id B ag m an to H arry in an u nderto ne, n otic in g
Harry w atc h in g th e g oblin s to o. “ T heir E nglis h is n 't to o g ood… it's lik e b ein g
back w ith a ll t h e B ulg aria n s a t t h e Q uid ditc h W orld C up… b ut a t l e ast t h ey u se d
sig n la n guag e an oth er hum an co uld re co gniz e. This lo t keep gab blin g in
Gobble d e-g ook… an d I o nly k now o ne w ord o f G obble d eg ook. B la d vak . It
mean s 'p ic k ax . ' I d on't l ik e t o u se i t i n c ase t h ey t h in k I 'm t h re ate n in g t h em .”
He g av e a s h ort, b oom in g l a u gh.
“W hat do th ey w an t? ” H arry sa id , notic in g how th e goblin s w ere still
watc h in g B ag m an v ery c lo se ly .
“E r— well… ” sa id B ag m an , lo okin g su dden ly nerv ous. “T hey … er …
th ey 'r e l o okin g f o r B arty C ro uch .”
“W hy a re th ey lo okin g f o r h im h ere ?” s a id H arry . “ H e's a t th e M in is tr y in
London, i s n 't h e?”
“E r … as a m atte r o f f a ct, I 'v e n o i d ea w here h e i s ,” s a id B ag m an . “ H e's s o rt
of… s to pped c o m in g to w ork . B een a b se n t fo r a c o uple o f w eek s n ow . Y oung

Perc y, h is a ssis ta n t, s a y s h e's i ll. A ppare n tly h e's j u st b een s e n din g i n str u ctio ns i n
by o w l. B ut w ould y ou m in d n ot m en tio nin g th at to a n yone. H arry ? B ecau se
Rita S keete r's still p okin g a ro und e v ery w here sh e c an , a n d I'm w illin g to b et
sh e'd w ork u p B arty s illn ess in to so m eth in g sin is te r. P ro bab ly sa y h e's g one
mis sin g l ik e B erth a J o rk in s.”
“H av e y ou h eard a n yth in g a b out B erth a J o rk in s? ” H arry a sk ed .
“N o,” sa id B ag m an , lo okin g str a in ed a g ain . “ I'v e g ot p eo ple lo okin g, o f
co urs e … ” ( A bout tim e, th ought H arry ) “ an d it's a ll v ery s tr a n ge. S he d efin ite ly
arriv ed in A lb an ia , b ecau se s h e m et h er s e co nd c o usin th ere . A nd th en s h e le ft
th e c o usin 's h ouse t o g o s o uth a n d s e e a n a u nt… a n d s h e s e em s t o h av e v an is h ed
with out t r a ce e n r o ute . B lo w ed i f I c an s e e w here s h e's g ot t o … sh e d oesn 't s e em
th e ty pe to e lo pe, fo r in sta n ce… b ut s till… W hat a re w e d oin g, ta lk in g a b out
goblin s a n d B erth a J o rk in s? I re ally w an te d to a sk y ou”— he lo w ere d h is v oic e
—”h ow a re y ou g ettin g o n w ith y our g old en e g g?”
“E r… n ot b ad ,” H arry s a id u ntr u th fu lly .
Bag m an s e em ed t o k now h e w asn 't b ein g h onest.
“L is te n , H arry ,” h e s a id ( s till i n a v ery l o w v oic e), “ I f e el v ery b ad a b out a ll
th is … y ou w ere th ro w n in to th is to urn am en t, y ou d id n't v olu nte er fo r it… a n d
if … ” (h is v oic e w as s o q uie t n ow , H arry h ad to le an c lo se r to lis te n ) “ if I c an
help a t a ll… a p ro d in th e r ig ht d ir e ctio n… I 'v e ta k en a lik in g to y ou… th e w ay
you g ot p ast t h at d ra g on!… w ell, j u st s a y t h e w ord .”
Harry sta re d u p in to B ag m an 's ro und, ro sy fa ce a n d h is w id e, b ab y-b lu e
ey es.
“W e'r e s u ppose d to w ork o ut th e c lu es a lo ne, a re n 't w e?” h e s a id , c are fu l to
keep h is v oic e c asu al a n d n ot s o und a s th ough h e w as a ccu sin g th e h ead o f th e
Dep artm en t o f M ag ic al G am es a n d S ports o f b re ak in g t h e r u le s.
“W ell… w ell, y es,” s a id B ag m an im patie n tly , “ b ut— co m e o n. H arry — we
all w an t a H ogw arts v ic to ry , d on't w e?”
“H av e y ou o ff e re d C ed ric h elp ?” H arry s a id .
The s m alle st o f f ro w ns c re ase d B ag m an 's s m ooth f a ce. “ N o, I h av en 't ,” h e
sa id . “ I— well, l ik e I s a y, I 'v e t a k en a l ik in g t o y ou. J u st t h ought I 'd o ff e r … ”
“W ell, th an ks,” sa id H arry , “ b ut I th in k I'm n early th ere w ith th e e g g…
co uple m ore d ay s s h ould c ra ck i t.”
He w asn 't e n tir e ly su re w hy h e w as re fu sin g B ag m an 's h elp , e x cep t th at
Bag m an w as a lm ost a s tr a n ger to h im , a n d a ccep tin g h is a ssis ta n ce w ould fe el
so m eh ow m uch m ore lik e c h eatin g th an a sk in g a d vic e f ro m R on, H erm io ne, o r
Sir iu s.
Bag m an lo oked a lm ost a ff ro nte d , b ut c o uld n't s a y m uch m ore a s F re d a n d
Geo rg e t u rn ed u p a t t h at p oin t.

“H ello , M r. B ag m an ,” s a id F re d b rig htly . “ C an w e b uy y ou a d rin k?”
“E r… n o,” sa id B ag m an , w ith a la st d is a p poin te d g la n ce at H arry , “n o,
th an k y ou, b oys … ”
Fre d an d G eo rg e lo oked quite as dis a p poin te d as B ag m an , w ho w as
su rv ey in g H arry a s t h ough h e h ad l e t h im d ow n b ad ly .
“W ell, I m ust d ash ,” h e s a id . “ N ic e s e ein g y ou a ll. G ood l u ck , H arry .”
He h urrie d o ut o f th e p ub. T he g oblin s a ll s lid o ff th eir c h air s a n d e x ite d
afte r h im . H arry w en t t o r e jo in R on a n d H erm io ne.
“W hat d id h e w an t? ” R on s a id , t h e m om en t H arry h ad s a t d ow n.
“H e o ff e re d t o h elp m e w ith t h e g old en e g g,” s a id H arry .
“H e s h ould n't b e d oin g th at! ” s a id H erm io ne, lo okin g v ery s h ock ed . “ H e's
one o f t h e j u dges! A nd a n yw ay, y ou'v e a lr e ad y w ork ed i t o ut— hav en 't y ou?”
“E r… n early ,” s a id H arry .
“W ell, I d on't th in k D um ble d ore w ould lik e it if h e k new B ag m an w as
tr y in g to pers u ad e you to ch eat! ” sa id Herm io ne, still lo okin g deep ly
dis a p pro vin g. “ I h ope h e's t r y in g t o h elp C ed ric a s m uch !”
“H e's n ot, I a sk ed ,” s a id H arry .
“W ho c are s i f D ig gory s g ettin g h elp ?” s a id R on. H arry p riv ate ly a g re ed .
“T hose goblin s did n't lo ok very frie n dly ,” sa id H erm io ne, sip pin g her
butte rb eer. “ W hat w ere t h ey d oin g h ere ?”
“L ookin g fo r C ro uch , acco rd in g to B ag m an ,” sa id H arry . “H e's still ill.
Hasn 't b een i n to w ork .”
“M ay be P erc y s pois o nin g him ,” sa id R on. “P ro bab ly th in ks if C ro uch
sn uff s it he'l l be m ad e head of th e D ep artm en t of In te rn atio nal M ag ic al
Coopera tio n.”
Herm io ne gav e R on a don't - jo ke-a b out- th in gs-lik e-th at lo ok, an d sa id ,
“F unny, goblin s lo okin g fo r M r. C ro uch … T hey 'd norm ally deal w ith th e
Dep artm en t f o r t h e R eg ula tio n a n d C ontr o l o f M ag ic al C re atu re s.”
“C ro uch can sp eak lo ad s of dif f e re n t la n guag es, th ough,” sa id H arry .
“M ay be t h ey n eed a n i n te rp re te r.”
“W orry in g a b out p oor 'i c k le g oblin s, n ow , a re y ou?” R on a sk ed H erm io ne.
“T hin kin g o f s ta rtin g u p S . P . U . G . o r s o m eth in g? S ocie ty f o r th e P ro te ctio n o f
Ugly G oblin s? ”
“H a, h a, h a,” s a id H erm io ne s a rc astic ally . “ G oblin s d on't n eed p ro te ctio n.
Hav en 't y ou b een lis te n in g to w hat P ro fe sso r B in ns h as b een te llin g u s a b out
goblin r e b ellio ns? ”
“N o,” s a id H arry a n d R on t o geth er.
“W ell, th e/r e q uite c ap ab le o f d ealin g w ith w iz ard s,” s a id H erm io ne, ta k in g
an oth er s ip o f b utte rb eer. “ T hey 'r e v ery c le v er. T hey 'r e n ot l ik e h ouse -e lv es, w ho

nev er s tic k u p f o r t h em se lv es.”
“U h-o h,” s a id R on, s ta rin g a t t h e d oor.
Rita S keete r h ad ju st e n te re d . S he w as w earin g b an an a-y ello w r o bes to day ;
her lo ng n ails w ere p ain te d sh ock in g p in k, a n d sh e w as a cco m pan ie d b y h er
pau nch y p hoto gra p her. S he b ought d rin ks, a n d s h e a n d th e p hoto gra p her m ad e
th eir w ay th ro ugh th e cro w ds to a ta b le n earb y. H arry , R on, an d H erm io ne
gla rin g a t h er a s s h e a p pro ach ed . S he w as ta lk in g f a st a n d lo okin g v ery s a tis fie d
ab out s o m eth in g.
“… did n't s e em v ery k een to ta lk to u s, d id h e, B ozo ? N ow , w hy w ould th at
be, d o y ou th in k? A nd w hat's h e d oin g w ith a p ack o f g oblin s in to w a n yw ay ?
Show in g th em th e s ig hts … w hat n onse n se … he w as a lw ay s a b ad lia r. R eck on
so m eth in g's u p? T hin k w e s h ould d o a b it o f d ig gin g? 'D is g ra ced E x-H ead o f
Mag ic al G am es a n d S ports , L udo B ag m an … ' S nap py s ta rt to a s e n te n ce, B ozo
—we j u st n eed t o f in d a s to ry t o f it i t— ”
“T ry in g t o r u in s o m eo ne e ls e 's l if e ?” s a id H arry l o udly .
A fe w peo ple lo oked aro und. R ita S keete r's ey es w id en ed beh in d her
je w ele d s p ecta cle s a s s h e s a w w ho h ad s p oken .
“H arry !” s h e s a id , b eam in g. “ H ow l o vely ! W hy d on't y ou c o m e a n d j o in ?”
“I w ould n't co m e near you w ith a te n -fo ot bro om stic k ,” sa id H arry
fu rio usly . “ W hat d id y ou d o t h at t o H ag rid f o r, e h ?”
Rita S keete r r a is e d h er h eav ily p en cile d e y eb ro w s.
“O ur r e ad ers h av e a r ig ht t o t h e t r u th , H arry . I a m m ere ly d oin g m y-”
“W ho c are s i f h e's h alf -g ia n t? ” H arry s h oute d . “ T here 's n oth in g w ro ng w ith
him !”
The w hole p ub h ad g one v ery q uie t. M ad am R osm erta w as sta rin g o ver
fro m b eh in d th e b ar, a p pare n tly o bliv io us to th e fa ct th at th e fla g on sh e w as
fillin g w ith m ead w as o verflo w in g.
Rita S keete rs s m ile f lic k ere d v ery s lig htly , b ut s h e h itc h ed it b ack a lm ost a t
once; sh e sn ap ped open her cro co dile -s k in han dbag , pulle d out her Q uic k -
Quote s Q uill, a n d sa id , “ H ow a b out g iv in g m e a n in te rv ie w a b out th e H ag rid
you k now . H arry ? T he m an b eh in d th e m usc le s? Y our u nlik ely frie n dsh ip a n d
th e r e aso ns b eh in d i t. W ould y ou c all h im a f a th er s u bstitu te ?”
Herm io ne sto od u p v ery a b ru ptly , h er b utte rb eer c lu tc h ed in h er h an d a s
th ough i t w ere a g re n ad e.
“Y ou h orrib le w om an ,” s h e s a id , th ro ugh g ritte d te eth , “ y ou d on't c are , d o
you, a n yth in g fo r a s to ry , a n d a n yone w ill d o, w ont th ey ? E ven L udo B ag m an
—”
“S it dow n, you silly little gir l, an d don't ta lk ab out th in gs you don't
unders ta n d,” sa id R ita Skeete r co ld ly , her ey es hard en in g as th ey fe ll on

Herm io ne. “ I k now t h in gs a b out L udo B ag m an t h at w ould m ak e y our h air c u rl…
not t h at i t n eed s i t— ” s h e a d ded , e y ein g H erm io ne's b ush y h air.
“L et's g o,” s a id H erm io ne, “ c'm on. H arry — Ron… ”
They le ft; m an y p eo ple w ere s ta rin g a t th em a s th ey w en t. H arry g la n ced
back a s t h ey r e ach ed t h e d oor. R ita S keete r's Q uic k -Q uote s Q uill w as o ut; i t w as
zo om in g b ack w ard a n d f o rw ard o ver a p ie ce o f p arc h m en t o n t h e t a b le .
“S he'l l b e a fte r y ou n ex t, H erm io ne,” s a id R on in a lo w a n d w orrie d v oic e
as t h ey w alk ed q uic k ly b ack u p t h e s tr e et.
“L et h er tr y !” sa id H erm io ne d efia n tly ; sh e w as sh ak in g w ith ra g e. “ I'l l
sh ow h er! S illy little g ir l, a m I? O h, I'l l g et h er b ack fo r th is . F ir s t H arry , th en
Hag rid … ”
“Y ou d on't w an t to