Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Chapter Summary and Analysis - Part Two
This is the longest (most pages) JKR book to date. It further solidifies the writing style she is using in the Harry Potter series and introduces no small number of new: Locations, Persons, Creatures, Concepts and Issues which need to be dealt with (as if there aren't enough already.)
By far her "darkest" book to date, some of my patients' parents are concerned over what effect reading it might have on their children. Usually, I explore with them what other books their children have already read and what effect they had on them. Surprisingly, I find that a fair number of children, over ten-or-so, have read Tolkien's Lord of the Ring book's (in some form). And, not surprisingly, many of those who are under ten "didn't like" or seemed to be upset by the books. After all, the "Ring" books are much, much darker and intense over all!
In The Goblet of Fire, Harry does seem to be buffeted through circumstances completely beyond his control AND beyond his own ability to solve - save it be for "lucky circumstances." In addition, some parents express concern that Harry's actions aren't a very good role model; and find it difficult to believe that boarded students of that age (even in British Schools) are left alone so much "to raise themselves" by the adults in their lives. I must agree, they do make a good point when you consider that children do "identify with" the Harry Potter books MUCH more readily than with the "Ring" books, because "Potter" deals with substantially more mundane and identifiable activities. Therefore "poor examples" in "Potter" could have much more negative effect on children than those in "Ring."
It is precisely this characteristic, however, which compels children to sit for hours at a time and anxiously look forward to completing such a massive literary exercise. What a waste to not take advantage of such an opportunity! Especially when its so easy to overcome any and all objections one might have. "Read it yourself", I've begun advising parents, "see what it is that you think Harry could have done better and intentionally counteract it." By knowing the Potter vocabulary, you can either read it with your child or discuss it with them as they read it, making it a shared experience. And, you can comment where you think you need to, about how to do things better. Ask them "feeling" questions: "How did you feel when…" or "Have you ever been in a situation like…" or "What would you do if…" What a GIFT you can give them by doing this! You know that a "shared experience is part of what they are, forever."
If you think there is little "redeeming" value in the series- take a look especially at what advice Albus Dumbledore gives. Found near the end of every book so far. In addition, use the 'Parents Guide' annotations (in the right margin) to help you along - the spell is: "Specialis Revelio Parentus"
- Literary annotations:
In this category are special annotations about literary aspects of the chapter. Author's intent, style, and explanations of word meanings are some of the types of entriesLong Book:
Wow! What a long book. Largely due to the fact that this book is the first one in the series to spend a good deal of time away from Hogwarts. The introduction of new places and characters requires a good deal of exposition. Even at the bookstore counter the reader can tell that this book is going to further the story along a great deal.
Parent's Guide annotations:
In this category are annotations for parents and other care givers of children. Ideas for discussions which will not only make the story more interesting but enable children to understand how it can apply their own lives. Hero's Journey annotations:
In this category are special annotations about how the book is following Joseph Campbell's outline for the "master mythological styling."
- Mad-Eye Moody
- The first of September, always being a Monday at Hogwarts, was a very heavy class schedule. Hermione was eating again, claiming that she had decided there were better ways of making a stand about elf rights. The owls came bringing Neville and Malfoy packages; but, nothing came for Harry, which made him worry about Sirius and Hedwig. Professor Sprout had them use their dragon-skin protective gloves to squeeze pus from bubotubers in Herbology class. The pus was an excellent remedy for the more stubborn forms of acne; but, undiluted was very caustic. Eloise Midgen had tried to curse her pimples off and needed Madame Pomfrey to put her nose back on. Hagrid had them try to feed several hundred, newly-hatched Blast-Ended Skrewts in their Care of Magical Creatures class. The Skrewts could burn, sting and bite all at once, and Malfoy made his usual arrogant, derisive complaints. Trelawney discussed the stars in Divination class and told Harry that he must have been born under the influence of Saturn in midwinter. He responded that he had been born in July. Trelawney told Lavender Brown that her unaspected planet was really Uranus. Ron asked her if he could "have a look at Uranus too" and Trelawney heard him, prompting her to give the class a lot of homework.
In the great hall, Malfoy harassed Ron about Rita Skeeter writing of his father in the Daily Prophet. He had embarrassed the ministry, she said, by helping the paranoid, has-been, ex-Auror Mad Eye Moody. Then Malfoy started in on Ron's parents and house, so Harry asked him if his mother had her nose in the air at the Quidditch Cup because she smelled something bad or just looked that way all the time. Malfoy tried to jinx Harry while he had his back turned, but Moody turned Malofy into a ferret and bounced him up and down on the marble floor. Moody said that he didn't like people who attacked when their opponents back was turned, and bounced him higher until stopped by professor McGonagall. She told Moody that they never used transfiguration on a student for punishment, but talked to their head of house instead. When Malfoy threatened to tattle to his father, Moody told him to go ahead because he "knew him of old." Moody took Malfoy to talk with Snape "another old friend," he said. Ron wanted to fix the memory of the bouncing ferret in his mind permanently. Hermione ran to the library to work on a "non-schoolwork related" project. Fred and George told the kids that their lesson with Moody was great, because "he knows man." None of them could wait until Thursday, when they had their first lesson with the odd man.
- Unaspected Planet: A vague term used by astrologers (fortune tellers) of dubious value. The "aspect" is said to be "the angle formed by the rays of light proceeding from two stars." In other words, the angle that two planets make with each other when you look at them. If the two have the same angle, they are said to be in "conjunction," if directly opposite (180 degrees), "opposition." To be "unaspected" has unclear meaning, even to astrologers; but, in Miss Brown's case, could be simply inability to calculate. It was the needed foil for Ron's subsequent comedic remark.September First: In this book, as others, September first begins Hogwarts new year, and it's always on a Monday.Punishment: As hurtful as ridicule is, it still does not inflict bodily harm or danger. Therefore one must find an acceptable, non-bodily harm, method of dealing with the perpetrator. On the other hand attacking a defenseless person is cowardice of the ultimate degree, and should be prevented by the least invasive method available. Moody's protection of Harry is understandable, especially in light of his long history of dealing with evil people. McGonagall's reprimand is also understandable. Ask: What do you think about someone who would attack behind your back? Is it fair?Give it and take it: Malfoy, not unexpectedly, can give his ridicule much better than he can take it. Harry did nothing more than respond in kind, after tolerating a great deal of abuse; and then only to defend his friend.
- The Unforgivable Curses
- Snape had reached a new level of vindictiveness on both Harry and Neville. They believed that it was because Moody got the DADA position that Snape wanted. Finally the long-awaited Thursday, first-lesson with Moody, arrived and they took the three seats right in front of his desk. He called role looking as scary as ever, even when he smiled. To Ron's dismay Moody said that he would only be with them one year, because he'd only taken the post as a favor to Dumbledore. The Ministry, he said, didn't want them to know about the unforgivable curses; but, he and Dumbledore thought they could handle the knowledge, so they could better defend themselves. Using spiders, he asked the class what the three curses were which were most heavily punished by the ministry. Ron answered "the Imperious curse" and Moody pointed his wand saying "Imperio," which made the spider do anything he wanted even against it's will. When some of the class laughed he angrily shut them down saying, this was the curse most often used by Lord Voldemort and the Death eaters. CONSTANT VIGILANCE! he barked so that everyone jumped.
Neville suggested "the Cruciatus Curse" (which no one but Harry knew had been used on Neville's parents). Moody "Engorgio'ed" the spider larger then said: "Crucio," which made it twitch and writhe in agony, until Hermione, seeing Neville's reaction, shouted "stop it." This was also popular with LV as torture.
Hermione answered the "Avada Kedavra Curse." Moody explained that it was the Killing Curse, and performed it on the last spider in the bottle calling "Avada Kedavra" with a flash of green light. There was no defense or counter-curse, he said, "and only one person had ever survived it" pointing directly at Harry. Harry was stunned and envisioned the scene he had learned about last year, when attacked by the Dementor's. He had seen his father killed first, defending them; then his mother plead for Voldemort to kill her instead; then she chose not to step aside, so was killed as well. The curse needs a powerful bit of magic behind it and "none of them could perform it at their age," Moody said. Using any one of these curses on a fellow human earns a life sentence in Azkaban. After class, they found Neville alone, completely spaced out. Moody noticed it too and took him to his office for tea. He gave Neville a book, about "magical water plants of the Mediterranean," because he knew Neville was really good at Herbology. Harry thought that was a "very 'Lupin' thing to do."
While they were just confabulating predictions about their own futures for their Divination homework, they saw Fred and George writing a letter and saying something about "it sounds like we're accusing him." Hermione came back from the Library and told them about starting the "Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare- S.P.E.W." They tried to convince her that the Elves "didn't want to be free," but finally relented and joined the society just to shut her up. Hedwig finally returned with a note from Sirius which said that he was "flying north immediately" and to "go to Dumbledore if it hurts again." Harry was upset with himself that he was putting Sirius in danger, and was curt with Hedwig who left in a huff. Neither Harry nor Neville could get to sleep for a long time that night.
- Unforgivable Curses: This leads to discussions about the legal structure of the British wizarding world. The dilemma may be basic to wizardry - it takes so little to cause effect. Anyone with a wand can perform unspeakably destructive acts. Such a level of penalty is designed to make their use demand conscious thought in times of 'hot blood.' To 'get even,' in a fit of anger, by cursing someone into oblivion, demands punishment by a rational society.
Cruciatus: Torture is universally recognized as a crime. There is no legitimate use for a curse that does nothing but cause pain. Imperious: subordinates the will of its victim to the will of the attacker. Avada Kedavra: The illegality of murder is even more widely recognized. However, it is not so much on the 'state of mind,' as in the Muggle world, but rather on the method employed. In the US, killing by explosives carries a mandatory sentence. The Killing Curse may be banned for the same reason: not because bombs can kill, but because it makes killing too easy.Unforgivable: Children may have a difficult time comprehending this, as they are so often disciplined and forgiven. To do something that you can never say you are sorry for, is a very terrible thing. This might be a good time to discuss making amends and apologizing for wrong doing with your child. Ask: how important is it that a person should never do an 'unforgivable' crime? It might be similar to being 'grounded to your room' forever. That's where you will live from now on.
- Beauxbatons and Durmstrang
- The next morning Harry wrote to Sirius telling him not to come and took the letter to the owlery to get Hedwig to deliver it. She was still upset and ignored him until he shamed her into taking the letter. Moody said he would be putting the Imperious curse on them all so they would know what it felt like. When Hermione objected that it was illegal he excused her but she didn't leave for fear of missing something. None of them could fight off the curse until Harry who was told to "jump onto the desk." A little voice in his head began arguing with him about it so he only half-jumped smacking his kneecap. Moody was so pleased of Harry's success that he made him do it four times until he could completely do it. All the teachers were piling on the work to prepare for their O.W.L tests next year with extra books, reports, essays and Snape said he would poison one of them to see if the antidote they were assigned actually worked. When Malfoy refused to do extra work with the blast-ended skrewts and threatened telling his father, Hagrid backed him down and commented on what a good ferret he made. A notice was posted about the arrival of delegations from the other wizarding schools on Friday and Harry was glad they would be excused early so Snape wouldn't have time to poison them all.
The castle was all spiffed up and banners were hung. Fred and George were overheard talking something about someone "not talking to them" and they "may have to send a letter." Hermione taught them that the heads of schools were always the tri-wizard judges and that Hogwarts: A history never mentioned having "House Elf slaves" even once. Almost no one was signing up for S.P.E.W. and she still couldn't be convinced that House Elves did not want to be paid and have vacations. Hedwig came back rapidly with Sirius' letter saying he was "in country" and to keep changing owls when they wrote.
Beauxbatons came to Hogwarts in an enormous flying carriage pulled by a dozen winged horses. The Headmistress was Madame Maxime who was the size of Hagrid and the students were shivering from the cold and their very light clothing. Hagrid would take care of the horses which needed "forceful handling" and drank only single-malt whiskey.
Great bubbles and a whirlpool appeared in the lake and a magnificent ship arose out of it which looked like a "resurrected ship." The Durmstrang students who disembarked all looked like Crabbe and Goyle from a distance but were wearing cloaks of shaggy, matted fur. The Headmaster Karkaroff's unctuous, fruity voice and yellow smile didn't extend to his eyes, which remained cold and shrewd. It surprised them all that Viktor Krum, Ron's idol and Bulgarian Quidditch player, was part of the delegation.
- Crest is Two crossed, golden wands, each bearing three stars
. "Beauxbatons" is French for "beautiful wands." "Durmstrang" is an obvious play off the German phrase "Strang und Durm," which means "storm and stress."
- The Goblet of Fire
- Viktor Krum made quite a stir with the Hogwarts students who wanted his autograph. The Beauxbatons students chose to sit with the Ravenclaw table and uniquely stood when their headmaster entered the room until she sat down on Dumbledore's left. Durmstrang sat with the Slytherin's, much to Ron's dismay, and when they removed their fur cloaks they had on blood-red robes. The feast consisted of many different dishes from other lands and when the Beauxbatons girl, who had laughed during Dumbledore's speech, asked for the Bouillabaisse, Ron went spacey like he had at the World Cup. He compared her to the girls at Hogwarts which hurt Hermione's feelings. Ludo Bagman and Mr. Crouch joined the staff table and were introduced as additional judges. Dumbledore had Filtch bring in the casket containing the goblet and described that three school champions would be chosen (one from each school) by the Goblet of Fire, a roughly hewn wooden cup brimming with dancing blue-white flames. The champions would be judged by how well they completed three dangerous tasks and the reward was a 1,000 Galleons and a cup. Contestants over 17 must place their names, as a binding magical contract, in the Goblet and he would bewitch an age line around it to prevent any under-aged competitors. Of course Fred and George immediately began devising how they could fool the age line and trying to talk Harry into joining.
When Karkaroff saw Harry he froze in the doorway until Moody spoke to him, frightening him away. Fred & George used one drop each of aging potion and crossed the line to enter the contest. They were blasted 10 feet and sprouted identical white beards to Dumbledore's amusement. Angelina Johnson and Cedric Diggory both put their names in. Harry, Ron and Hermione went to spend Saturday with Hagrid and found that the Beauxbatons and Durmstrang students were living in their carriage and boat, respectively. Hagrid refused to join S.P.E.W. as it "would be doin' 'em a unkindness." Hagrid got ready to go up to the feast and Hermione had to tell him he'd gone too heavy on the "Eau de cologne" so he dunked his head in the rain barrel. He met Madame Maxime and became oblivious to them on the way up to the castle.
After they had eaten the Goblet was ready to make its decisions. In sparks, it spit out papers with the names of: Viktor Krum for Durmstrang, Fleur Delacour for Beauxbatons, Cedric Diggory for Hogwarts… AND Harry Potter!
- The Four Champions
- Harry's stunned look wasn't enough to convince the rest of the students that he hadn't done anything to enter the contest. Dumbledore asked him to go into the anteroom where the other chosen champions were waiting. Bagman introduced him as the "fourth tri-wizard champion" to the others anger. Fleur called him a "little boy" who was after the money and prize. Karkaroff blamed Dumbledore for cheating and Snape told him that it was all Harry who had "crossed lines" since he'd been at Hogwarts. Maxime accused Dumbledore of making a mistake on the age line and Harry of lying; but, McGonagall defended Dumbledore and Dumbledore seemed to know Harry was truthful when he said he hadn't put his name in or had an older student do it for him. Crouch said that with the binding magical contract Harry had to compete. When Karkaroff threatened to pull out, Moody, who had limped into the room unannounced, turned the tables on him by strong innuendoes that it would have taken someone very skilled to "confundus" the Goblet into forgetting there were only three schools so Harry could be chosen under a fourth school. "And," he implied, "hoping that he would die in the attempt." "It's my job to think like a dark wizard," he continued, "as you ought to remember." Dumbledore broke in and stopped the argument and said there wasn't anything else that could be done except to continue with all four champions.
Crouch was startled out of deep reverie to give the instructions. He looked ill with dark shadows under his eyes and a thin papery look to his wrinkled skin that hadn't been there at the World Cup. The fist task would be an "unknown" in order to test their daring. They will be armed only with a wand and would receive second task instructions at the end of the first. They can't accept help from anyone and would be exempted from end-of-year tests. Crouch left saying he had work to do and had left "young Weatherby" in charge.
On the way up to bed Cedric asked Harry "how he had done it" and only said "Ah, right," when Harry said he had been telling the truth. He was amazed that someone seemed to have wanted him in the tournament and wondered if Moody was right about wanting him to die or just being his paranoid self. The Fat Lady already knew from her friend Violet that Harry had been made champion. He was greeted with a wild tumultuous party and had to repeat over and over that he hadn't entered purposely; but, no one believed him- including Ron when he went up to bed. Ron was angry with him for not telling him how he did it and said "I'm not stupid, you know." He asked, "why would anyone else put your name in" and foolish Harry just dumbly said "I don't know" and didn't even mention Moody's explanation. Ron angrily pulled the curtains around his four-poster bed in a huff leaving Harry alone.
- The Weighing of the Wands
- Harry awakened still miserable and found Ron gone. Still not wanting to talk to people he was leaving the Gryffindor tower only to find that Hermione had thoughtfully brought him some toast and wanted to go for a walk. Hermione believed what Harry had told her and said that Ron was "just jealous" of the attention Harry received and that Harry needed to write to Sirius so he didn't read it in the paper first. No one in the school believed Harry hadn't done it on purpose; and all, except the Gryffindor's, were angry with him. No one except Hermione was even speaking to Harry. Hagrid had his class take the blast-ended skrewts for a walk so he could get Harry alone and tell him that he believed him. Harry became so depressed that he got extra Charms homework because he couldn't do a summoning charm. The Slytherin's were wearing badges saying "support Cedric Diggory, the real Hogwarts champion" until they were pressed and changed to "Potter Stinks." When Malfoy insulted Hermione Harry drew his wand. Malfoy egged him on and they both sent curses at the same time; his hitting Goyle with "Furnunculus" and Malfoy's hitting Hermione with "Densaugeo." Snape intervened and found Goyle with boils and Hermione with elongated beaver teeth. And true to form he punished Harry and Ron with 50 points and detention then insulted Hermione to tears.
Snape intended to poison Harry at the end of a potion class to see if his antidote worked but Colin Creevy came to get him out of class for wand weighing and to have the champions picture taken. Rita Skeeter shanghaied Harry into a broom closet for what turned out to be a malicious interview. Her quick-quotes-quill turned his "Um's and Ah's" into "my parents are watching over me," and "I cry at night when I think of them." Dumbledore rescued him from the closet calling her previous slamming article about him "enchantingly nasty" and saying they didn't have time to hear her explanation for her rudeness. Mr. Ollivander examined their wands and found Fleur's to be "9 1/2 inches, inflexible and rosewood with a Veela Hair core (from her grandmother). He used "Orchideous" to test it producing a bunch of flowers. Diggory's was made by him, was 12 1/2 inches, springy with a core of unicorn tail and produced a stream of silver smoke rings. Krum's was a "Gregorivitch creation," thick, 10 1/4 inches, Hornbeam with a dragon heartstring core and performed "Avis" with a bang to produce a flock of birds. Harry was worried that Ollivander would tell the group (and Skeeter) about his wand's connection with Voldemort but, instead, he just produced a fountain of wine out of it and handed it back. Skeeter waylaid them again for photos which happened to continually feature Harry.
When Harry got back to the dorms he found he had detention with Ron the next night and a letter from Sirius. Sirius wanted Harry to be alone by the common room fire at a certain time so they could talk and told him to be careful and to write of anything unusual.
- The Hungarian Horntail
- Harry had never suffered nerves like now with the alienation and impending task; and, he could only look forward to visiting with Sirius. Rita Skeeter's article had been all fabrications about him and put the misspelled names of the other champions in the last sentence - ignoring Cedric entirely. The taunts, especially from Slytherin's, became more intolerable but Cho Chang did catch him off guard by saying that she "hoped he did well on Tuesday." Hermione, who had been called Harry's girlfriend by Skeeter, had endured abuse as well but was still the only one talking to Harry. Ron even sat at other tables so Harry spent more time in the library with Hermione until Krum began appearing there as well, along with his entourage of autograph seekers. Hermione said "he's not even good looking" and people "wouldn't look twice if he couldn't do that Wonky-Faints thing" (mispronouncing his famous Quidditch move.)
Harry would only go on their Hogsmead visit if they wouldn't meet up with Ron and he could wear his invisibility cloak. Harry made Hermione look like an idiot sitting in the 3 Broomsticks tavern all alone talking to herself. They saw the other champions all surrounded by admirers and Hagrid talking to Moody who was only drinking out of his hip flask for fear of being poisoned. Moody's magical eye saw Harry under his cloak so they came over to talk to Hermione. Moody commented on Harry's "nice cloak" and Hagrid whispered for Harry to meet him at midnight. They worried that Hagrid's visit might interfere with Sirius' talk but Hermione stayed to help clear the common room of students "no matter what." The Creevy brothers' attempt to alter Malfoy's badges got them stuck on "Potter Stinks" then changed to "Potter Really Stinks." Harry had to follow Hagrid, all spruced up for a walk with Madame Maxime, for a walk around the perimeter of the forest to where Charlie Weasley and others were wrangling four Dragons in an enclosure. There was a black Hungarian Horntail, a blue-grey Swedish Short Snout, a Common Welsh Green, and a red Chinese Fireball; all nesting mothers, which the Champions had to get past, and all vicious. "The Horntail," Charlie said, was "especially vicious with poison tail horns" as well as breathing fire. Charlie was upset Hagrid had brought Maxime apparently too dense to think it would give Fleur an advantage. On his way back to the castle Harry stumbled upon Karkaroff who was sneaking toward the dragons and figured Cedric would be the only one who didn't know about them.
Hermione had cleared the common room and Harry told Sirius about all his troubles and the dragons. Sirius warned Harry that Karkaroff was a former Death Eater who had made a deal with the ministry to get out of Azkaban where Moody had put him. He told Harry that the Death Eaters had been more active lately, ministry hadn't found the witch who went missing in Albania where Voldemort was and Moody had been attacked before coming to Hogwarts. He conjectured that someone was acting on Voldemort's orders to attack Harry during the competition and warned him to be wary of all of the Durmstrang's who were taught how to actually do the dark arts at school. Just as Sirius was beginning to tell Harry how to get around the dragon Ron came down the stairs and interrupted them. Being upset at his interruption, they argued and Ron rudely suggested Harry needed rest for his "next interview." Harry threw a "Potter Really Stinks" badge at his forehead and said that Ron "might have a scar now, which is what he wanted."
- The first Task
- When Harry told Hermione about everything, she said "let's just keep you alive until Tuesday evening then we can worry about Karkaroff." They frantically, although unsuccessfully, scoured the library for the "simple spell" Sirius had said would work; but Krum kept appearing followed by his entourage of girls. Harry thought of leaving school but remembered that he would rather be at Hogwarts with a dragon "than on Privet Drive with Dudley." He used magic to get Cedric Diggory alone and "make it fair" by telling him of the dragons, but was overhead by Moody who called him into his office. Harry saw Moody's Dark Detectors: a Secrecy Sensor which vibrated when it sensed concealment, a Foe-Glass mirror showing adversaries getting closer, and a magic trunk with seven keyholes. Moody told him his warning to Cedric was a "very decent thing" and that cheating was a traditional part of the tournament. He said he "wasn't going to tell Harry" how to get past the dragon; but, gave him advice which led to Harry figuring out how to get past the dragon: Play to your strengths and use a simple spell to get what you need.
Harry desperately used Hermione to finally learn the summoning charm in order to get his Firebolt to come to him during his task. In Divination, Trelawney predicted great danger of violent death for people born in July, so Harry anxiously blurted out "Good. Just as long as it's not drawn out. I don't want to suffer." He saw Ron almost laugh but didn't care and he kept practicing making fly's come to him under the table.
Harry's voice had changed with fear when McGonagall calmed him saying: "just do your best" and that there were watch-wizards in case of trouble. Bagman had the champions draw out replica's of their dragons from a paper sack and said that each in turn had to get past the dragon and take a golden egg it was sitting on. Fleur got the Welsh Green, Krum the Chinese Red, Diggory the Short-Snout and Harry the Hungarian Horntail. Bagman then got Harry alone and offered to secretly help him because he'd "taken a fancy to him"; but, Harry refused. Harry was last and had to hear the others' success (or failure) through the tent walls. Finally he walked into the arena, summoned his Firebolt to jeers, then took flight and became completely immersed in his element. Hearing nothing else he flew around the dragon using different tactics to get the dragon off the nest so he could catch the egg like a snitch. When he landed the "sound came back up" to cheers. Ron, finally scared into his senses, came to apologize to Harry and, when Harry said "it's nothing" as if nothing had been wrong, Hermione burst into tears calling them both "so stupid" as she hugged them.
Cedric had turned a rock into a dog to distract his dragon but got burned getting the egg. Fleur put her dragon into a trance but a snore caught her dress on fire. Krum hit the dragon in the eyes with a spell which made it trample some of it's own eggs. And Harry, who had been pierced by its tail, got 31 points. Maxime gave Harry an 8 out of ten. Dumbledore, a 9, Bagman 10 and Karkaroff a FOUR! Harry was tied with Krum who had gotten 10 from Karkaroff. Bagman told them that, for the next task, they had to decipher what the task would be from a clue enclosed inside each of their eggs. On the way back to the castle Rita Skeeter jumped out at Harry from behind some bushes asking for another interview. Harry summarily rebuffed her.
- The House-Elf Liberation Front
- Because everyone was still alive and speaking to each other after the first task, they all went to the Owlery to have Pigwidgeon take a letter to Sirius. The party in the common room was- uncommon, with fireworks and stolen food. Harry was pressed upon to pry open the egg only to hear an ear-wrenching, undecipherable, screech, somewhat resembling a musical saw orchestra. Hermione was suspicious about the treats Fred and George were offering as Neville chewed a custard crème. Within minutes he had become a canary, molted and appeared normal to everyone's applause; and, the twin's advertisement of "Canary Creams seven Sickles each." When they had told about getting their food from the Hogwarts house elves, Hermione was anxious to have them tell her that the kitchens were behind a painting of a bowl of fruit and to tickle the pear. Harry fell easily to sleep that night, after all, he had another three months until the next task.
Only 10 Skrewts were left, because of their tendency to kill one another, despite, or because of, their: thick armor; powerful, scuttling legs; fire-blasting ends; and stings and suckers. When their class tried to see if they would hibernate, the repulsive animals went on a rampage causing most students to take cover in Hagrid's cabin. Rita Skeeter disobeyed Dumbledores orders to stay out of the school, and tried again, failing, to get Harry to talk to her. She feigned interest in Hagrid in order to appoint an interview with him in the three broomsticks, and didn't give Harry a chance to warn him. Trelawney was still predicting his death but, with Ron now speaking, it seemed amusing again. Hermione, who had been missing a lot lately, had made her way into the kitchens and found both Dobby and Winky working there. Not being able to find jobs elsewhere they requested jobs of Dumbledore who offered to pay them. Winky had refused payment due to her shame, and began drinking Butterbeer - which made house elves drunk. Dobby was enjoying his one Galleon a week, one day a month off and ability to call Dumbledore a "balmy old codger" if he wanted to. He had "beat down" Dumbledore's offer of 10 Galleons and weekends off because he still wasn't fully able to get over the house elves' constitutional inhibitions. Winky, on the other hand, wasn't even trying to accept her freedom and wailed when she even thought about it. She said "Mr. Crouch is needing me" and "Mr. Bagman is a bad wizard." Ron had taken a liking to Dobby and promised him the sweater that his mother always sent him for Christmas. To Hermione's pity, the elves bowed and groveled, pressing mounds of food on them as they left. Ron tried to counter Hermione's disgust of Crouch by saying that "at least Bagman had a sense of humor." He felt Percy's affection for Crouch was because "he wouldn't recognize a joke if it danced naked in front of him wearing Dobby's tea cozy."
- The Unexpected Task
- McGonagall announced that the Yule Ball over the Christmas Holiday would be open to fourth year students and above with younger dates, if desired. Then, privately, she told Harry that the Champions were expected to perform the first dance and he should get a date. She had to verbally enforce her demand over his frantic objections. Harry wanted to ask Cho Chang, a fifth year student, but girls seemed to travel in giggling packs and he could never get her alone. Hagrid reported that Rita Skeeter's interview had mostly been trying to get dirt on Harry. Hermione nagged Harry to begin working out the egg clue but he thought he had loads of time. Fred and George asked to borrow Pigwidgeon to deliver a letter but wouldn't say to whom. Fred asked Angelina to go to the ball with him nonchalantly across a crowded room. When Harry finally screwed up enough courage to ask her, he found that Cho was already going to the ball with Cedric Diggory, and he took the news harder than he thought he would. Ron had, in a Veela-induced stupor, asked Fleur DeLacour to go with him… to his great embarrassment. Ginny told them that Neville had asked Hermione but she already had a date. Hermione refused to tell them who had asked her and argued with Ron about it. Finally Harry asked Pavarti Patil and asked her if she could find a date for Ron. They agreed on Padma, her sister, who was in Ravenclaw.
- The Yule Ball
- The twins' Canary Cream business flourished with people sprouting feathers and molting all over the place. Only Fleur found things to find fault with, even criticizing the House Elf's cooking. Hermione continued to refuse to fall for Ron's incessant tricks to find out who she was going to the ball with; and, she even backed Malfoy down with "you’re a twitchy little ferret aren't you?" Ron finally noticed that Hermione's front teeth were smaller and straighter now, after having Malfoy's hex "repaired" by Madame Pomfrey. Sirius wrote complementing Harry on the first task and reminded: "constant vigilance," which sounded like Moody. Dobby frightened Harry awake Christmas morning to give him a present of knitted socks. Harry gave Dobby Uncle Vernon's old yellow socks which Dobby called a "mistake because they were the same." Ron gave Dobby the maroon sweater his mom always sent. Sirius gave Harry a pen knife that would open any lock and the Dursley's gave him a tissue. Ron charmed the fringe off his dress robes for the ball and Hermione made an entrance, completely unrecognizable, with Victor Krum who had trouble saying her name. Ron ignored Padma all night staring jealously at Hermione. Hagrid was with Madame Maxime and Percy attended saying he had been promoted to Mr. Crouch's personal assistant. He said Crouch wasn't well since the loss of Winky.
Karkaroff didn't want Krum to tell Hermione so much about Durmstrang because they wanted to keep it hidden and secret. Dumbledore said that even he didn't know all Hogwarts' secrets and cited unexpectedly finding a room with chamber pots when he needed one badly. He hadn't found it since. Fleur continued to criticize Hogwarts to her date, who was in a Veela induced daze. After the first dance both Ron and Harry's dates found others to dance with, while Harry watched Cho and Ron watched, and argued with, Hermione over "fraternizing with the enemy." Fred and George accosted Ludo Bagman out of ear-shot to Percy's annoyance.
Harry and Ron walked on the grounds and overheard Karkaroff tell Snape that something "has been getting clearer and clearer for months." Snape told him if he was worried he should "flee." Then, trying to avoid Fleur, they hid behind some bushes where they overheard Hagrid ask Maxime "which side she had it on" as his mother had been a giant. Harry tried to not listen by focusing on a black beetle crawling on a statue; but, he heard Maxime, Incensed, claim she was merely "big boned' and not a half-giant. Ron had to explain to Harry that wizards disliked Giants because they were vicious and just "liked killing." After Voldemort disappeared the Auror's pushed those that weren't killed back into the mountains. When the ball was over Cedric caught up with Harry and told him he should "take the egg with him to take a bath." He said Harry could use the Prefects bathroom and gave him the password. Harry was offended and suspicious of Cedric's advice then found Ron and Hermione bellowing at each other in the common room. She finally got the last word and told Ron that next time he "should ask me before someone else does, and not as a last resort."
- Rita Skeeter's Scoop
- Hermione thought that people's prejudice against giants was similar to what they had against werewolves (like Lupin). The next tri-wizard task seemed much closer to Harry from this side of Christmas but he still hadn't done much work on his egg clue. Professor Grubbly-Plank took over Hagrid's classes because he was staying in his cabin. Skeeter wrote a scathing article about "Dumbledore's giant mistake" revealing that Hagrid was half giant and lies that could have only come from Slytherin students. Hagrid began receiving hate letters and finally Harry, Hermione and Ron stormed down to talk to him. They found Dumbledore already there and between them all they convinced Hagrid to come back to teach. Dumbledore told Hagrid of the letters of support that he had received from people who knew Hagrid. He also told them that his brother, Aberforth, was prosecuted for practicing inappropriate charms on a goat but he didn't hide. Dumbledore refused to accept Hagrid's resignation. Hagrid told the kids that his dad hadn't lived to see him expelled and Dumbledore had stood up for him after that. He said that Harry had reminded him of himself, "without a father or mother and feeling like you wouldn't fit in at Hogwarts." He praised Harry for working hard in the tournament and asked about the egg. Harry lied and said "Great" then decided he needed to swallow his pride and try Cedric's suggestion.
On their way into Hogsmead they saw Victor Krum in a swimming suit diving into the cold lake to swim. And they saw Bagman talking to some upset Goblins. Bagman came over to Harry and offered to help him with the tournament again- Harry refused and asked if he had found Berth Jorkins yet and if he had offered help to Cedric. The twin's showed up and Bagman made a hasty retreat. Skeeter came into the bar muttering about writing a scathing story on Bagman. Harry asked her if she was trying to ruin someone else's life and they broke into an argument which Hermione also jumped into with both feet. Skeeter insulted Hermione and as they were leaving Ron told Hermione that "she'll be after you next."