The Sugar Quill
Author: Elanor Gamgee (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Hermione's Fourth Year  Chapter: Chapter One: The Goblet of Fire
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Hermione's 4th Year

(a Harry Potter fanfiction by Elanor Gamgee )

Author’s Note: None of this belongs to me. This story is based on Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling and will feature "offstage scenes" as well as scenes from the book reinterpreted from Hermione’s point of view.

Part 1: The Goblet of Fire

"Harry Potter."

Hermione turned and gaped at Harry, who had frozen in his seat with a blank look on his face. Around the Great Hall, everyone was turning to stare at the Gryffindor Table. For a moment, all was silent…and then slowly, an angry buzzing began.

"I didn’t put my name in," said Harry. "You know I didn’t."

Hermione realized that her mouth was still open, and closed it. She suddenly became aware of Ron on the other side of her, still staring blankly at Harry.

"Harry Potter!" called Professor Dumbledore. "Harry! Up here, if you please."

Hermione shook her head and recovered enough to whisper "Go on," as she pushed Harry slightly in the direction of the top table. Harry stumbled a bit as he began the long walk, and the buzzing in the hall grew louder as he moved toward the door.

Hermione heard Dumbledore say something else to Harry, but she didn’t catch what it was. She was too busy watching Ron.

The blank look on Ron’s face had given way to the narrowed eyes and rising color that unmistakably meant anger. As Dumbledore turned back to the students at the house tables, Ron pushed back his chair and stalked out of the Hall. In the rising noise of the crowd, none of the teachers or prefects seemed to notice. Dumbledore was just starting to make some announcement to the students as Hermione slipped out of her seat and followed Ron.

She caught up to him by a suit of armor on the fifth floor.

"Ron!" she called breathlessly after him—he had much longer legs than she did and could move pretty quickly when he wanted to. "Ron, wait!"

But Ron didn’t stop moving. Hermione hurried along beside him, trying to keep up. "Leave me alone, Hermione," he said tautly.

"Ron, what is the matter with you? I know you’re worried about Harry, but—"

Ron finally did stop in his tracks at this. He goggled at her. "Worried about Harry? He got himself into this—"

"Got himself into this? Ron, what are you talking about? You know Harry didn’t put his name into that goblet!"

Ron glared at her for a moment, then shook his head as he continued his furious strides. "How did it get in there then? I can’t believe him! It’s not enough to be famous bloody Harry Potter—now he has to be Triwizard champion too!"

"Ron! You know Harry better than that! Didn’t you see the look on his face when his name came out of the goblet? He was just as shocked as any of us!"

But Ron wasn’t listening. He whipped aside a tapestry and went through the door behind it. "It was probably the Invisibility Cloak," he muttered. "He found a way to get past the age line with that, I bet. But he could’ve told me too. It would’ve covered both of us."

Hermione scrambled through the door after him, ready to bang his head into the thick stone walls if that would make him see reason. "RON, you are being ridiculous. Don’t you see that someone is trying to hurt Harry? Someone put his name in there!"

Ron, who had been grumbling to himself the whole time she was talking, turned on her. "It’s always the same with him! He can bend any rule in this place and come out the hero, can’t he? Well, I for one am sick of it!" He stormed off down the hall. Hermione heard him say "balderdash" angrily to the Fat Lady and scramble through the portrait hole.

Hermione sighed and walked slowly toward the entrance to the common room. Ron really can be an idiot sometimes, she thought. Climbing through the portrait hole, she saw Ron slumped moodily in one of the good chairs by the fire. Hermione crossed the deserted room and sat down gingerly in the squashy armchair across from him.

"Ron, why don’t you just talk to Harry and find out the truth?"

Ron snorted in disgust. "As if he’d tell the truth."

Hermione lapsed into silence and stared into the fire. She’d seen Ron angry before, but it was usually directed at her. It was somehow unsettling to see his fury directed at Harry.

Hermione was just about to say that maybe a game of chess would cheer him up, when the portrait hole opened and Gryffindors crowded into the room, laughing and talking loudly. Hermione was slightly taken aback. After the angry buzzing going on down in the Great Hall, Hermione was positive everyone would be acting the way Ron was—though, to be fair, she hadn’t expected Ron to act this way. Fred and George bounced over to the fire as if they were on springs.

"He did it, Ronnie-boy!" Fred crowed. "Though how he did it without getting a beard is beyond me!"

"Good old Gryffindor ingenuity, that!" said George. "And Dumbledore’s letting him enter! The Fat Lady has her friend Violet out in the portrait and she just came from downstairs and told us. So how did he do it? You two know, of course, don’t you?"

Hermione glanced uneasily at Ron, who had grown steadily redder as the twins were speaking.

"I’m going to bed," said Ron in a dangerously quiet voice. He stood up and started heading toward the boys’ staircase, but Fred stopped him.

"Ron, you can’t leave now! We’re going to have a party for Harry! George and I have some food we nicked from the kitchens yesterday and we even have some butterbeer left! Harry will be back any minute." Ron pushed his way past Fred and disappeared up the boys’ staircase.

Fred turned to Hermione, bewildered. "What’s with him?"

Hermione shook her head and sighed. "It’s a long story." Fred looked as if he was about to question her further when a loud popping noise behind them announced that George had broken out the Filibuster’s Fireworks. Fred bounded over to his twin.

Hermione wanted to wait for Harry, but soon realized she would never get a chance to talk to him in this crowd. She headed up to bed, hoping that Ron’s temper would fizzle out before he saw Harry. However, Hermione knew her redheaded friend too well to think that this scenario was very likely. If Ron would just listen, he would have to realize the truth. She knew that being friends with famous Harry Potter was tough on Ron—to be honest, it was tough on her, too. After all, Harry could just walk into a room and be praised for something he did before he could walk, while she had to work for every bit of recognition she got. But it was different for Ron…even if he did do something spectacular, like facing McGonagall’s giant chess set in their first year, he always felt overshadowed by his brothers. Being an only child does have its advantages, Hermione thought wryly as she pulled the curtains shut on her four-poster.

But what could be done about the situation Harry was in? Hermione decided to think about that instead of about Ron’s anger. After all, Ron and Harry never had fights. Everything was bound to be okay in the morning…right?

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