Harry & Hermione
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witowsmp - A Sirius Matter
Chapter 29 - The First Task
I am not J.K. Rowling, and I do not own Harry Potter (although I do own a copy of all the books and movies), and am certainly not making any money off of this. I'm writing this purely because I enjoy it, and I hope you do too.
A Sirius Matter
Chapter 29 – The First Task
The next few days went by quickly. After thanking Hermione for claiming the dragon remains for him, Harry hired a professional to harvest everything from his horntail that was possible. The dragon-leather was being used to make protective outfits for Harry, Hermione, and Sirius. There would be enough for seven more outfits, but Harry was going to think about who would get them. He was also considering making several vests instead that he could loan out if the castle was attacked or something.
The outfits consisted of a vest with attachable sleeves and gloves, shorts with attachable legs and socks, a hood that attached to the vest, and a pair of boots. The owners would always wear as much of the armor as was practical for the situation.
Hermione was thrilled to find out how much of the dragon's remains could be used in potion ingredients. About half the blood was salvageable. After everything was harvested she stored them in Harry's special trunk.
As soon as Harry was released from the hospital wing, he used his map to find Cedric Diggory to warn him about the first task. He found Cedric in the hall talking to Cho Chang.
"Hi Cedric, Hi Cho," said Harry as he approached them.
"Hi Harry," responded Cedric while Cho blushed.
"Cedric, could I talk to you for a second?"
"Sure." They walked into a nearby classroom and Harry closed the door. "What's up?"
"Dragons," Potter looked at him intently. "The first task is dragons. I've seen them myself. So has Madam Maxime."
Diggory's face paled. "I heard your girlfriend flew you into the castle on a broom and you left a small trail of blood behind you. Was it from them?"
Harry nodded. "I was stupid and ran into Lucius Malfoy and Igor Karkaroff. They managed to capture me and threw me in with three dragons." He took a deep breath. "I barely got out of there alive." At that moment he realized something. "I should have portkeyed away! Dammit! I was so scared I should've…never mind. The point is that you'll be facing a dragon."
"Does Krum know?"
"Not yet. I was going to tell him…"
"I'll do it. We don't know him. He might be loyal to Karkaroff. He might attack you if you're alone together." Cedric grinned. "Of course, you've already escaped dragons, so a Quidditch Player should be easy."
"Ha, ha. Thanks Cedric." They left the room and went their separate ways – Cedric to Cho and Harry to Hermione.
When Harry found Hermione, he told her about his realization that he should have used his emergency portkey when he was with the dragons.
"You were panicking," she said. "Not only that, but you couldn't stand still for a moment to think. What if you'd accidentally taken a dragon with you to Sirius' house? Or worse yet my house? And I'm glad you didn't try apparition either, because it was still within school grounds. Even if it wasn't, you'd have probably splinched yourself in your hurry and your…your parts left there would've been…"
"Eaten." He shrugged. "What about when I was in the air?" he said, determined to berate himself.
"You were in need of medical attention. You couldn't have apparated in that condition even if you weren't still inside the wards, and you'd have probably passed out and died if you'd portkeyed then. I know I would've if I'd seen you just disappear. I'd have been sure Voldemort caught you."
"Voldemort! We should've left as soon as we were brought to that cemetery."
"We were separated immediately, and neither one of us was willing to abandon the other. I certainly couldn't have portkeyed away when Wormtail was holding me. Besides, I'll bet Voldemort had wards in place to stop you from apparating or portkeying away. That blanket was probably made to pass through his ward. The book said that there are several ways to create wards to prevent most portkeys from working, and it's impossible to make one that goes through every ward. You have to know what is being used to stop the portkey to make it so it gets through the barrier.
"For example, according to 'Hogwarts, a History,' this castle is warded so that only a portkey made by the headmaster can get through the wards. That only applies inside the actual walls of the building. No one, not even the headmaster, can apparate anywhere in the castle or the grounds, with one exception. Because this is a school, the headmaster can set Great Hall to allow apparition within but not outside the room for one hour at a time. That way, apparition can be taught within the castle. Unfortunately that would have been too public of a place for us to learn."
He chuckled. "I guess so. I'm just glad Dumbledore let us floo to Grimmauld Place every Sunday for our lessons."
Before they knew it, Harry was sitting with Hermione, Ron, Neville, and Ginny in the stands to watch the first task of the Triwizard Tournament. Harry made sure they were far enough away from the action that dragon fire wouldn't reach them. He gazed at the fenced enclosure as a very familiar looking Swedish Short-Snout was led inside to guard several eggs, one of which was golden. Soon Ludo Bagman's voice began echoing throughout the arena.
"Welcome everybody, to the first task of the Triwizard Tournament. As you've probably guessed by now, the first task our champions have to face is a dragon! Specifically, they have to retrieve the golden egg from one. First up, Hogwarts' own champion, Cedric Diggory, will be facing a Swedish Short-Snout." At that moment, a whistle blew, and the relatively tiny figure of Cedric came into view.
Far away, Karkaroff was in a room with Voldemort and Malfoy when he began to feel pain worse than the cruciatus curse. He fell to the ground as he was writhing. "M-m-my L-l-lord," he called out shakily, "Y-y-you m-m-must h-h-help m-m-me."
A content look came across Voldemort's rat-shaped face. "Mr. Karkaroff, you have failed me again and again, and have given me no reason to help you. However, I do have a reason to refrain from helping you. I've never seen someone die from a breach of contract before." He calmly looked at Malfoy. "Lucius, doesn't it appear to be quite painful?"
Lucius chuckled at the broken man who was currently losing his lunch as his body shook violently from the pain. "Yes, my Lord, quite so. Igor, would you say that this is more painful or less painful than the cruciatus?"
"Doesn't Diggory look pale," commented Ron.
"You'd be pale too if you had to face a dragon!" said Hermione sharply, remembering the ordeal Harry had just recently endured.
"Sorry mate," said Ron. "I still can't believe you took out a Horntail!"
"I was lucky," Harry shrugged.
"That and all the training you've been doing since summer," said Ginny.
"Quiet," said Neville. "I want to pay attention to the tournament."
They all started using their omnioculars and focused on Cedric as he carefully made his way toward the monster he was facing. His wand was steadily held in his right hand as he scanned the area, clearly looking for something. They watched him smile and speed up his pace.
Suddenly the beast noticed him and shot fire at him. He saw the flames just in time and dove forward, barely avoiding them as his face hit the ground.
"Oooh, narrow miss there, very narrow," commented Bagman as the crowd screamed and then gasped.
The champion quickly got to his feet and pointed his wand at a nearby rock.
"What's he doing?" asked Harry.
Suddenly the rock started growing and changing shape into a dog.
"He's transfigured it into a Labrador!" said Hermione excitedly, "That's very advanced!"
"Cool," Harry commented as the dragon began moving toward the barking dog. Cedric began to inch his way toward the eggs.
"He's taking risks, this one!" commented Bagman's amplified voice.
When the dragon was half-way to the dog, it stopped and turned back toward the eggs it was guarding. As soon as it saw Cedric approaching them, it blew more flames at him. He pointed his wand at the flames and shot a spell that stopped most of them. However, some of them got to his robes, which lit in flames.
"Clever move – pity it didn't work!" said Bagman as many of the women, including Hermione and Ginny, screamed.
Within seconds, Cedric stopped, dropped, and rolled toward the eggs, putting out the flames. He grabbed the golden one and broke out in a run toward the medical station, narrowly missing getting burned again. Harry, along with most of the crowd, was on his feet clapping and cheering. In total he had taken fifteen minutes.
"Very good indeed!" Bagman was shouting. "And now the marks from the judges!"
Madam Maxime raised her wand in the air first. What looked like a long silver ribbon shot out of it, which twisted itself into a large figure eight.
Next was Mr. Crouch's replacement (the man who'd fired Percy in chapter 17), Tim Novak. He smiled broadly as he gave Cedric a nine.
After that, Dumbledore and Bagman both gave Cedric an eight. Finally, Karkaroff's replacement, a man named Ludwig Narkoma, gave Diggory a seven, making the final score forty.
The dragon handlers got the Short-Snout out of there and brought in a Welsh Green, and replaced the golden egg.
"That must be the new dragon that replaced the horntail," commented Hermione.
"It looks a whole lot safer than the horntail," said Harry. "Fleur should thank me."
"One down, two to go!" Bagman yelled as the whistle blew again. "Miss Delacour, if you please!"
Ron, along with half the boys there, stood up to watch the Beauxbatons champion slowly make her way toward the center of the arena. She pointed her wand at the Welsh Green dragon, whose eyes seemed to start closing for a moment until it shook its head and shot a flame at her. She barely jumped away in time.
"Oh I'm not sure that was wise!" said Bagman.
"Still think it's not dangerous?" asked Hermione.
"I didn't say it wasn't dangerous, just that it was less dangerous than a horntail."
"I'd have to agree with that," said Ron.
In the meantime, the French girl was running around the area and turning to shoot another charm at the dragon every fifteen seconds or so. Each time, its eyes would be closed for longer. Finally, the monster collapsed to the ground, apparently asleep.
"Oh…nearly! Careful now," said Bagman.
With a smirk in her face, and confidence in her stride, she walked over toward the eggs, ignoring the sleeping dragon until it snored a huge blast of fire that caught her skirt.
She screamed, along with half the crowd. Harry could see the terrified young woman calming herself down. She pointed her wand at her skirt, and water sprayed the fire out, making her look like she'd wet herself. Oblivious to this effect, she sighed in relief.
"Good lord, I thought she'd had it then!" yelled Bagman.
She quickly grabbed the golden egg and ran out of there as the crowd began to cheer. In total she took ten minutes.
"We'll now get her marks from judges," announced Ludo.
Maxime gave her a nine. Novak gave her an eight. Dumbledore gave her a seven. Bagman gave her a ten. Narkoma gave her a six. Her total score was forty. The Welsh Green was led out and the Chinese Fireball was led in. Another golden egg was placed out there.
The whistle blew once more. "And finally, here comes Mr. Krum!" cried Bagman, and Krum slouched into the arena.
He confidently pointed his wand at the beast and shot a curse directly into its eyes. The monster screamed in pain, shooting fire in the wrong direction.
"Very daring!" shouted Bagman happily.
Victor rushed as fast as he could toward the eggs as the injured and disoriented dragon moved around clumsily. When he was almost there, he shot the dragon's eyes again to make sure it couldn't see him, and the beast went wild, shooting fire (which missed Krum) again as it stomped toward the eggs, eventually stomping on many of them. Despite this, Viktor lunged toward the pile of eggs to grab his prize.
Ludo Bagman shouted, "That's some nerve he's showing – and – yes, he's got the egg!" The crowd was on its feet cheering. Krum had been the fastest and most daring by far, in Harry's opinion. As Viktor left the arena, Bagman continued, "And now the judges' marks."
Maxime gave him a seven. Novak gave him an eight. Dumbledore gave him a nine. Bagman gave him a seven. Narkoma gave him a nine. His total score was forty.
"It's incredible!" shouted Bagman. "All three champions are tied! I guess we'll have to wait until the second task to see who's the greater champion! This concludes the first task of the Triwizard Tournament."
Many miles away, after an hour and a half of intense pain, which was greatly amusing Voldemort, Lucius, and several other Death Eaters Riddle had summoned for the show, Karkaroff – the traitor to both sides – died.
As they were walking back to Gryffindor tower, Harry commented, "I'm alive. I hope that proves to everyone that I didn't put my name in the goblet."
"I hope so. I wonder where Karkaroff is?" said Hermione.
Ginny said, "I hope he didn't die alone."
Please review. Thank you to all who have. I hope you enjoyed my vision of how the task actually went for the other champions. I wasn't going to write this at first, but changed my mind.
P.S. The recognizable parts were taken from GoF
Comment – did you ever notice that three of the four champions in GoF were Quidditch Seekers, and the one who wasn't did the worst? Did you further notice that Fleur's score in the first task is not mentioned, nor is it possible to mathematically figure it out from the book (You can with Cedric during the 2nd and 3rd task, but the only score of hers that's mentioned is the twenty from the 2nd task).
Of course, without Karkaroff and Crouch as judges, the scores have changed slightly. Bagman also had to pick a different underdog to bet on.