Disclaimer: I own nothing. It all belongs to the
wonderful JKR. Much thanks to my great editor, B.
Professor Dumbledore stood in front of the crowded
tables of the Great Hall.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, in five minutes time I will
be asking you to make your way down to the Quidditch field for the third
and final task of the Triwizard Tournament. Will the champions please
follow Mr. Bagman down to the stadium now."
Harry stood, "Good luck, Harry, " said Ron. "Beat
"Ron!" Hermione scolded, "Harry, don't forget everything
we practiced, alright? You can do it! Good luck!"
"Be careful, Harry," cautioned Mrs. Weasley, "and
In sucession, the Weasleys wished Harry the best,
and then he was gone. Five minutes later, Dumbledore stood up in front
of the Hall again. "Will everyone please make their way to the Quidditch
field now, and will the families of the champions, Ron Weasley, Hermione
Granger, and Cho Chang please follow me."
Ron threw Hermione a confused glance, and she shrugged
her shoulders. For once, Hermione had no idea what was going on.
"Come along," said Mrs. Weasley, so they followed
Bill and Mrs. Weasley over to where Dumbledore stood waiting with Cho,
the Diggorys, the Krums, and the Delacours.
"The families and close friends of the champions
get the best seats," said Dumbledore, smiling, "Please come with me."
As they trooped acress the field, Ron whispered, "I reckon he'll be ok,
don't you, Hermione?"
"Of course he will! He knows plenty of spells and
curses, I think."
"Oh, sure," replied Ron.
But Hermione could tell by the slightly sea-sick
look on Ron's face that he wasn't so sure, and judging by the quivering
feeling in her stomach, it was obvious that she wasn't either. The champions'
families were sitting halway up the stands, directly in front of the entrance
to the maze. Hermione was sitting between Ron and Cho. Over past Cho,
on Hermione's left were Mrs. and Mr. Diggory, and the Krums. Past Ron,
Mrs. Weasley, and Bill were the Delacours. Professor McGonagall was giving
the champions some kind of instructions, but she was inaudible over the
roar of the crowd. This one of the few times that Hermione wished the
she could read lips: she hated not knowing what was going on.
"What do you think she's telling them?" she whispered
"Haven't got a clue. It's driving me bloody crazy,
For once, Hermione didn't scold Ron about his mouth.
"I know what you mean," she replied.
Professor McGonagall was clearly done with her
instructions, and she turned to Ludo Bagman, and opened her mouth to speak
to him, but Cedric tapped her shoulder, and held up his finger, like he
was asking for a minute. McGonagall gave him a questioning look, and he
gestured towards Cho. Out of the corner of Hermione's eye, she saw Cho's
cheeks flush. McGonagall gave Cedric a stern look, then waved her hand;
she had been beaten.
"Hurry up, Diggory," she shouted as Cedreic came
running towards the stands, and Cho went flying down the steps to meet
him. While the other champions talked nervously, Cho leaned out of the
stands and Cedreic kissed her. Then he leaned in and whispered something
in her ear that made her smile, and she whispered something back. Inwardly,
Hermione sighed and stole a glance at Ron. He was discussing something
with Seamus, who was sitting behind them, and was seemingly oblivious
to Cho, Cedric, and Hermione. However, Bill caught Hermione's eye, looked
at Ron, and winked at her. Blushing, Hermione turned back to look at Harry
"Let's go, Diggory," yelled McGonagall. Cho and
Cedric broke apart, and he gave her and his parents a final wave as he
jogged back across the field. Suddenly, the magnified voice of Ludo Bagamn
booomed over the field, just as it had during the Qudditch World Cup.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, the third and final task of the Triwizrd Tournament
is about to begin! Let me remind you how the points stand. Tied in first
place, with eighty-five points each- Mr. Cedric Diggory and Mr. Harry
Potter, both of Hogwarts School!"
Hermione let out a great whoop, but she could
hardly even hear it, because the noise from the surrounding stands was
deafening. Cho was screaming wih all her might, Ron was hollering "Go
Harry!" like there was no tomorrow, and all around her the seats quaked
"In second place, with eighty points- Mr. Viktor
Krum, of Durmstrang Institute!" The applause was not nearly as thunderous
this time, but Mr. and Mrs. Krum were on their feet, and Hermione couldn't
help but give a little yell. After all, he had taken her to the ball,
and asked her to visit him. At her yell, Ron threw her a deadly look.
'Ha, take that Ron, Mr. "They don't make 'em like that at Hogwarts."',
"And in third place- Miss Fleur Delacour, of Beauxbatons
Academy." More polite applause, and Hermione was delighted to see that
Ron did not yell for Fleur. Then Harry waved at them, and vigorously waved
back. "So...on my whistle, Harry and Cedric! Three-two-one!" Bagman gave
blast on his whistle, and Harry and Cedric disappered into the darks jaws
of the maze.
"Viktor! On my whistle!" yelled Bagman, checking
his watch. "Three- two-one-" screech. Viktor too, disappeared. Far below
Ron and Hermione, Fleur was nerxously twisting her robes in her hands,
and dropped only on the third blow of Bagman's whistle, when she too disappeared
in the maze. The crowd slowly quieted, and ten minutes had passed when
Cho turned to Hermione, her face still glowing from Cedric's kiss. "How
long do you think this will take, Hermione?" Hermione once again felt
a twinge of jealously, not because of Cedric, but simply because Cedric
wasn't a great prat who didn't have a clue about girls, like a certain
red-head who was sitting next to her.
"I don't know. Let me ask Ron." she replied, turning
"Don't bother," he said, grinning sheepishly. "Sorry,
I was listening in. I don't know. If Hermione doesn't know, NO-body knows."
Cho smiled at him, "Ok, thanks anyway." Then they fell back into silence.
Hermione listened to the crowd murmur around her. It was rather frustrating
not to know what was going on; she listened for a spell or something coming
from the maze. Suddenly, a shrill scream echoed through the stadium, and
red sparks shot up. "It's Fleur!" said Ron.
Determined not to ruin the night, and figuring
she owed him one for not cheering for Fleur, Hermione clenched her jaw
and kept her biting comment to herself. Hagrid vanished into the maze,
and moments later came out with a shock of pale blonde hair down his back.
"Fleur!" yelled the Delacours in unison, and pushed their way past the
Weasleys, past Hermione and Cho, past the Diggorys, and past the Krums,
then ran to their daughter who was lying on the field. "I hope she's alright,"
said Cho, whose face had gone white. "Miss Delacour is fine," boomed Ludo
Bagman, "She has been stunned, but she is perfectly fine." The roar of
the crowd died down again.
"What do you think happen?" Hermione asked Ron.
"Dunno," he replied. "She must've met something
she couldn't handle. You heard him, she'll be ok."
The remaining champions had been in the maze for
over an hour when the next sounds came. Someone was yelling, and it sound
like whoever it was was in a lot of pain. Next to Hermione, Cho went white
again. "It's Cedric," she whispered to no one in particular. "That's Cedric.
Cedric?" her voice rose. "Cedric?"
Suddenly, as suddenly as it had begun, the yelling
stopped, and a moment later, red sparks rose into the air. This time McGonagall
went in after the downed champion. The Diggory's faces fell. Hermione
knew how much they, especially Mr. Diggory, had wanted Cedric to win,
and now, it seemed, that he was going to be beaten by Viktor Krum or Harry
Potter. But when McGonagall returned from the maze, she was levitating
Viktor Krum in front of her, not Cedric. Hermione let out a suprised gasp
at the same time Cho let out a sigh of relief. Then, to Hermione's surprise,
Cho turned to her and asked, "Are you alright, Hermione?" "Oh...I suppose
so, yes. He's fine. Look, he's waking up."
"Are you going to go see him?" Cho asked. Beside
Hermione, Ron tensed up.
"No, I don't think so. I don't suppose he feels
much like talking now. I'll let him be with his parents," replied Hermione.
Ron relaxed, and grinned at no one in particular.
Krum's parents had already made their way to the
field, and were now following Krum, Fleur, and the Delacours to the hospital
wing. Slowly time went ticking by...nine-thirty, ten o'clock, eleven o'clock.
Many of the younger students were sleeping in the stands, and they were
rounded up by Professor Sinastra and sent back the their dorms.
By midnight, most of the first years were gone,
and a good portion of the second and third years. At midnight, Ron, who
was clearly very tired, closed his eyes and leaned against Hermione. Suprised,
she jumped, and he blushed furiously, mumbling an apology. At twleve-thirty
Lavender and Parvati left, saying they need their "beauty sleep." Mrs.
Weasley had Accio'd blankets all around, because even in June,
it was cool at night. Mrs. Diggory was asleep on her husband's shoulder,
while Ginny leaned on Bill. Hermione was lost in thought, mostly about
Ron (who looked so cute struggling to keep his eyes open) and Harry, how
many times their friendships had been tested and had come out twice as
Suddenly, at one o'clock, something happened. Two
bodies suddenly appeared at the entrance to the maze. Hermione and Cho
stood at the same time, craning to see what was happening. Hermione knew
instantly that something was wrong, and so, by the look on her face, did
Cho. "Cedric!" she screamed, and went flying down the stairs as she had
done only hours eariler to meet Cedric for one last kiss. Ron stood, looking
confused. Hermione yelled "Harry!" at the top of her lungs, then shot
after Cho. People around them didn't seem to understand what was happening.
Most of them were still sitting, or rubbing groggy eyes. Hermione was
down seven steps when she noticed that Ron, still dazed, wasn't behind
her, so she ran she back and grabbed his hand.
"Ron," she said urgently, "Ron, come on. Something's
wrong." Then she bolted back down the stairs, still only steps behind
Cho, dragging Ron with her. People were now awake, but they thought that
someone had won, although they weren't sure who, and thought that Cho,
Hermione and Ron were running to offer congratulations. Cho threw herself
at Cedric, and was caught by Professr Dumbledore, who tried to shield
her, but it was too late. She had seen him, and she had heard Fudge say,
"Dumbledore-he's dead!" Hermione, only steps away, saw Cho collapse onto
the ground, sobbing, screaming, reaching for Cedric, and then Hermione
"What's wrong with her?" asked Ron.
"He's dead, Ron," said Hermione. Ron's eyes grew
wide. "Harry? Harry's de-"
"No, no Cedric..." The crowd in stands had begun
to flood the field all moving towards the cluster of people. "Harry?"
called Ron. "Harry? Professor, is Harry....?"
"Ron, take Hermione out of here...Harry's alive."
The crowd around them had begun to scream "Dead? He's dead?" and Hermione,
still clutching Ron's hand, had gone very white, and had tears streaming
down her face. She was looking at Cedric, then looking at Cho, was still
sobbing on the ground, then looking at Ron, and she was silently crying.
"Go your common room, Ron," instructed Dumbledore.
Now it was Ron's turn to lead Hermione, who was watching Harry and Cho,
back the common room. He put his arm around her, and whispered "Come on,
let's go. We'll see Harry in a bit." They climbed the stairs, and sat
in front of the fire in the common room, Hermione with her legs curled
to her chest and her head on her knees, her face white and wet with tears,
but no longer crying, and Ron, his face white as well, with his arm still
about her shoulders. They fell asleep in front of the fire in this same
postion, too shocked, frightened, and tired to do anything else.