Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapters 35 to 37

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Okay, folks. We have three chapters left of this book and we’re gonna knock them all out at once so we can get started on Order of the Phoenix next week. Who’s with me!!

Well, I guess all of you are with me, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this. So let’s go!

Chapter 35

We are going to add this entire chapter to the list of reasons why Harry Potter should have been in intense therapy for the rest of his life, or at least on some major magical medication. Seriously, how did he not end up in a private room at St. Mungos? How?

He made it away from Voldemort. He’s back at the Quidditch-pitch-turned-maze. He’s clutching the dead body of Cedric Diggory. All is complete chaos, and all Harry can say is that he did what Cedric wanted, he brought Cedric’s body back for his parents. This is horrifying! Harry hears Dumbledore saying he wants Harry to stay, but Dumbledore also has to worry about Cedric’s parents, who are in the crowd watching all this go down.

Someone larger and stronger than he was was half pulling, half carrying him through the frightened crowd. Harry heard people gasping, screaming, and shouting as the man supporting him pushed a path through them, taking him back to the castle. Across the lawn, past the lake and the Durmstrang ship, Harry heard nothing but the heavy breathing of the man helping him walk.

“What happened, Harry?” the man asked at last as he lifted Harry up the stone steps. Clunk. Clunk. Clunk. It was Mad-Eye Moody.

A show of hands, who was relieved that Harry was being taken care of by Mad-Eye when they first read this. I sure was! Mad-Eye had proven himself. He took care of Harry. He was his friend. Dumbledore trusted him enough to not only allow him to teach at Hogwarts, but to demonstrate Unforgivables to the students. This guy was legit!

Mad-Eye questions Harry what had happened and Harry doesn’t hesitate to tell him. WE ALL TRUSTED MAD-EYE! At first, things seem fine. Mad-Eye is a former Auror, so of course he’s gonna want the details. He asks Harry normal questions after a thing like this, a basic order of events, more specific details on the spell ritual that brought on Voldemort’s return. But then there’s this question, after Harry says that the Death Eaters returned to Voldemort’s side:

“How did he treat them?” Moody asked quietly. “Did he forgive them?”

Why . . . why should that matter? It shouldn’t. In a legal investigation, whether or not Voldemort forgave his followers for abandoning him doesn’t mean squat, but it sure means something to Moody. Harry doesn’t even notice the question because he realizes that he should have told Dumbledore what he found out at the graveyard: there’s a Death Eater at Hogwarts, the person who made sure that Harry would be entered in the Triwizard Tournament. But don’t worry. Moody already knows who the Death Eater is. Harry immediately thinks it’s Karkaroff, but Moody tells him that Karkaroff was gone, ran away as soon as the Dark Mark burned when Voldemort summoned him. Karkaroff is a coward, too afraid to face the Death Eaters he betrayed to the Ministry to save his own skin.

So it wasn’t Karkaroff who put Harry’s name into the Goblet of Fire, but Moody knows who did. It was Moody himself. Before Harry can even process that, Moody appears fixated on that one detail from before.

“I asked you,” said Moody quietly, “whether he forgave the scum who never even went to look for him. Those treacherous cowards who wouldn’t even brave Azkaban for him. The faithless, worthless bits of filth who were brave enough to cavort in masks at the Quidditch World Cup, but fled at the sight of the Dark Mark when I fired it into the sky . . .

“I told you, Harry . . . I told you. If there’s one thing I hate more than any other, it’s a Death Eater who walked free. They turned their backs on my master when he needed them most. I expected him to punish them. I expected him to torture them. Tell me he hurt them, Harry . . .” Moody’s face was suddenly lit with an insane smile. “Tell me he told them that I, I alone remained faithful . . . prepared to risk everything to deliver to him the one thing he wanted above all . . . you.”

None of this makes any sense. Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody was a renowned Auror who captured lots of Death Eaters and made sure they were put away. He was well known for fighting the Dark Arts, not supporting them. Sure, he got a reputation for being a little crazy and paranoid, but Moody a Death Eater? According to Moody, he has been guiding Harry along this whole time, hoping to get him into the maze early so he could dispatch the other champions before they got to the Cup-turned-Portkey. Moody was the one who told Cedric to open the egg underwater, knowing that Cedric would want to repay the favor Harry gave him in telling him about the dragon. “Decent people are so easy to manipulate,” after all.

He also gave Neville that book about plants hoping that Harry would find out about gillyweed, but when he didn’t, he made sure Dobby overheard him talking about the stuff so that Dobby would make sure Harry got some. In the maze, Moody stunned Fleur and put Krum under the Imperius Curse to take out Diggory, which didn’t really work. Diggory was able to overpower Krum, which is ultimately what led to him going with Harry to the graveyard. All of this was so that Moody would see himself raised up in Voldemort’s eyes, honored over all the other Death Eaters.

“The Dark Lord and I,” said Moody, and he looked completely insane now, towering over Harry, leering down at him, “have much in common. Both of us, for instance, had very disappointing fathers . . . very disappointing indeed. Both of us had the pleasure . . . the very great pleasure . . . of killing our fathers to ensure the continued rise of the Dark Order.”

This is strange, because wouldn’t there have been some sort of story about the mysterious death of Moody’s father at some point? Wouldn’t that be the type of thing people would know about, especially with Moody’s prominence in the Auror department for so long?

Moody is fully insane now though, but as he raises his hand to finish Harry off, there is a large crash. It’s Dumbledore, Snape and McGonagall to the rescue! And Dumbledore is furious. It’s the first time we’ve really seen this side of him, the warrior that Voldemort feared. As he kicks over Moody so we can see his face, McGonagall goes to Harry and tries to take him to the hospital wing, but Dumbledore wants him to stay. He wants Harry to learn the truth to what he had suffered. Harry still can’t believe that all this time, it has been Moody behind all this.

“This is not Alastor Moody,” said Dumbledore quietly. “You have never known Alastor Moody. The real Moody would not have removed you from my sight after what happened tonight. The moment he took you, I knew — and I followed.”

Here comes the part where J.K. Rowling blows our minds again! Plot twists inside plot twists!

Dumbledore sends Snape to go fetch the strongest Truth Potion he has and then bring up Winky the house-elf from the kitchens. He tells McGonagall to go down to Hagrid’s pumpkin patch, where she will find a large black dog, and take that dog to his office. Snape and McGonagall must be used to following weird orders from their boss, since they don’t question him. Honestly, only the Truth Potion part makes sense. Dumbledore takes a set of keys and goes to Moody’s trunk. Each key makes the trunk reveal something different, but the last one shows an unconscious man laying inside: the real Mad-Eye Moody.

How is this possible? Polyjuice potion, of course. An almost throw-away plot point from Chamber of Secrets coming back. Moody is famous for drinking only from his flask, so no one would question him doing so every hour on the hour to keep the Polyjuice from wearing off. However, with everything going on this particular evening, it’s very possible that the imposter forgot to take it again tonight. Indeed, as they watch, the stunned Moody’s body begins to change, the wooden leg falling off, the magic eye popping out.

Harry saw a man lying before him, pale-skinned, slightly freckled, with a mop of fair hair. He knew who he was. He had seen him in Dumbledore’s Pensieve, had watched him being led away from court by the dementors, trying to convince Mr. Crouch that he was innocent . . . but he was lined around the eyes now and looked much older . . .

Snape returns with Winky and immediately recognizes the newly revealed man as Barty Crouch Jr. McGonagall can’t believe it. Winky is afraid that they killed him and is horrified. Dumbledore gives the unconscious man three drops of Veritaserum and then wakes him up with a spell. As Crouch begins to speak, a man who everyone thought was dead, he tells quite a tale.

It was his mother’s idea. She was dying and her dying wish was for his father to save their son. They used Polyjuice to switch places, leaving his mother to die and be buried at Azkaban while Crouch Jr. was kept prisoner by his father. He had to constantly wear an Invisibility Cloak and was kept under the Imperius Curse to be controlled. Winky was his constant companion and took care of him. During this time, only one person ever discovered the truth: a witch who worked with his father named Bertha Jorkins. She had come to the house and saw the truth. Crouch Sr. tried to modify her memory to make her forget and it damaged her memory permanently, which is why she got the reputation of being so wonky at the Ministry.

And now the Quidditch World Cup, where Crouch Jr. has already admitted that he set off the Dark Mark. Winky had convinced Crouch Sr. to let his son go to the game, which he did under heavy supervision. He was with Winky, tethered to her under the Invisibility Cloak, when Harry and his friends saw her up in the Minister’s box. When the Death Eaters turned up and had their fun, Winky tried to drag him away, which is how they ended up where they did and why Winky was stunned by the officials after Crouch Jr. cast the spell, which led to her being dismissed from the Crouch household. It’s all very complicated, isn’t it!

“Now it was just Father and I, alone in the house. And then . . . and then . . .” Crouch’s head rolled on his neck, and an insane grin spread across his face. “My master came for me.”

Voldemort had heard from Bertha Jorkins that Crouch Jr. was alive. Now the roles were reversed: Crouch Jr. was in charge and Crouch Sr. was the one who was a carefully controlled prisoner. This is the reason for his erratic behavior and his disappearance. He also captured Mad-Eye Moody. Remember that break-in, way back at the beginning of the book? The disturbance that Mr. Weasley went to help smooth over? Yep. That was Crouch.  By the time anyone else got there, he had already taken Moody’s place with the Polyjuice and prepared himself to go to Hogwarts. Misdirection upon misdirection upon misdirection!

At some point, Crouch Sr. is able to break free, which is when he confronted Harry and Krum down by the Forbidden Forest. Crouch Jr. was able to intercept him while everyone was running back and forth looking for him and killed him. Barty Crouch Sr. is buried in Hagrid’s garden. And then, the events of this night, the final night of the Triwizard Tournament.

“I offered to carry the Triwizard Cup into the maze before dinner,” whispered Barty Crouch. “Turned it into a Portkey. My master’s plan worked. He is returned to power and I will be honored by him beyond the dreams of wizards.”

This is incredibly messed up, y’all.

Chapter 36

So after all of that (that’s a really long chapter!), Dumbledore ties up Crouch and asks McGonagall to watch over him while he takes Harry upstairs. How is Harry still upright at this point? I would have fainted dead away so much earlier! Dumbledore also sends Snape to go get Madam Pomfrey so she can help the real Moody, who is still in the trunk, and then go get Cornelius Fudge, who will want to question Crouch himself. Dumbledore is taking Harry to Sirius, which is probably the best thing for Harry at this point.

On the way, Harry can’t stop picturing everything that has just happened: Voldemort’s return, Wormtail and his hand that he CUT OFF, Cedric’s dead body. He asks after Cedric’s parents and Dumbledore tells him that they are with Professor Sprout, Cedric’s Head of House.

They get to Dumbledore’s office and there is Sirius, ready to risk everything to make sure to be with Harry in his time of need. Fawkes is also there, ready to lend some tears to help heal Harry’s leg, which has been hurting this entire time, by the way. Dumbledore fills Sirius in on everything that Crouch had told him and then asks Harry to tell them everything that had happened after he touched the Portkey.

“We can leave that till morning, can’t we, Dumbledore?” said Sirius harshly. He put a hand on Harry’s shoulder. “Let him have a sleep. Let him rest.”

Sirius is all of us at this point, let’s be honest. We all wish Harry could just rest and try to recover from this ordeal. Dumbledore points out, probably correctly, that putting off facing it is not going to help Harry in the long run. Between Dumbledore’s and Sirius’s support, and Fawkes’s phoenix song, Harry finds the strength to relive what had happened in the graveyard. He explains what Voldemort had said, about wanting to use Harry’s blood in the ritual in order to circumvent Lily’s protection. As soon as he tells them this, we get a very weird reaction from Dumbledore.

For a fleeting instant, Harry thought he saw a gleam of something like triumph in Dumbledore’s eyes. But next second, Harry was sure he had imagined it, for when Dumbledore had returned to his seat behind the desk, he looked as old and weary as Harry had ever seen him.

“Very well,” he said, sitting down again. “Voldemort has overcome that particular barrier. Harry, continue, please.”

This “gleam of triumph” was the cause of so much speculation in the HP fandom community! What on earth did it mean??? Not going to go into it here, but let’s just say that Dumbledore is like an expert chess player who is thinking three or four moves ahead of the game and this has moved him even further down the board. Wait, that’s a really bad analogy. Oh well, you know what I mean!

Harry continues until he gets to the part where their wands connected. Sirius doesn’t understand why that happened, and to be honest, we didn’t either at this point. Dumbledore does, though — a phenomenon called “Priori Incantatem,” something that happens when two wands who share the same exact core are forced to fight each other. Harry and Voldemort’s wands each have a feather from the same phoenix inside them. That phoenix also just happens to be Fawkes! The wands recognize each other and refuse to fight; instead, one of them will force the other to “regurgitate spells it has performed.” Which is why we saw shadowy figures of Voldemort’s recent murder victims.

Harry finally finishes his story and is led to the hospital wing, Sirius changing back into his dog form. They are met by Ron, Hermione, Bill, and a very upset Mrs. Weasley. Dumbledore tells them that they may stay if Harry wants them to, but they can’t talk to him about what happened right now. Harry needs to rest. Dumbledore also convinces Madam Pomfrey that the dog can stay.

As Madam Pomfrey led Harry to a nearby bed, he caught sight of the real Moody lying motionless in a bed at the far end of the room. His wooden leg and magical eye were lying on the beside table.”

“Is he okay?” Harry asked.

It really shows some merit that Harry is concerned for Moody, even given his state at the moment. Even though on an intellectual level, he knows that Moody isn’t responsible for everything that went on tonight, it was still someone who LOOKED LIKE Moody, and that would be enough for me to not really want to see him, especially right now. Harry also reassures everyone else that he is okay. Madam Pomfrey gives him a potion to help him sleep and Harry takes it.

Harry wakes up to people shouting. Fudge. McGonagall. They burst into the hospital wing, followed by Snape, looking for Dumbledore, who arrives soon after. Turns out that when Fudge heard they had caught a Death Eater, he decided to bring a dementor with him to question Crouch. Let’s just say that we don’t have to worry about Crouch any more. Dumbledore had wanted Crouch to give his testimony, but Fudge doesn’t want to hear about it. He has heard McGonagall and Snape’s version of events and thinks Crouch was just a dangerous lunatic. He also does what, in my opinion, makes him the absolute worst character in the series.

He refuses to believe Voldemort is back.

“See here, Dumbledore,” said Fudge, and Harry was astonished to see a slight smile dawning on his face, “you — you can’t seriously believe that. You-Know-Who — back? Come now, come now . . . certainly, Crouch may have believed himself to be acting upon You-Know-Who’s orders — but to take the word of a lunatic like that, Dumbledore . . .”

And here’s the thing. Fudge knows that he’s not very smart. He knows that Dumbledore is smarter and more powerful than he is. Fudge also knows that he is in a position of power, and that power is tenuous at best. It is much easier to believe that Dumbledore is lying to him and that all the crazy stories Rita Skeeter has been spreading about Harry are true than it is to accept responsibility of leading the Ministry of Magic through a dangerous time. Fudge is weak. Fudge is scared. He doesn’t want to see everything he has built up destroyed, even if doing so might save lives and actually give them an advantage over Voldemort this time around.

No, it’s easier to believe that Dumbledore is either trying to overthrow him, has gone mad, or both. Dumbledore, however, is neither of those things.

“The only one against whom I intend to work,” said Dumbledore, “is Lord Voldemort. If you are against him, then we remain, Cornelius, on the same side.”

Another round of proof comes from Snape, who shows Fudge the Dark Mark on his arm, fading now but still very visible. This mark was burned into each Death Eater by Voldemort himself as a means of summoning them. He and Karkaroff both felt the Mark burn and knew what it meant. Fudge is disgusted by everything and leaves after giving Harry the prize money for winning the Tournament.  After he’s gone, Dumbledore turns to Mrs. Weasley and asks if he can count on her and Mr. Weasley, which she confirms. Bill goes to send a message to him. Dumbledore sends McGonagall to go find Hagrid and Madame Maxime, if she will come, and bring them to his office. He also sends Pomfrey to go take care of Winky. Once the room is mostly cleared out, he asks Sirius to transform.

Really, Dumbledore should have probably given them some warning. Mrs. Weasley is horrified, but Ron reassures her that it’s okay. Snape is not happy about it at all, but Dumbledore tells them both that they need to get over their differences and trust each other. Yeah, Dumbledore. That’s not going to happen.

“I will settle, in the short term,” said Dumbledore, with a bite of impatience in his voice, “for a lack of open hostility. You will shake hands. You are on the same side now. Time is short, and unless the few of us who know the truth stand united, there is no hope for any of us.”

Very slowly — but still glaring at each other as though each wished the other nothing but ill — Sirius and Snape moved towards each other and shook hands. They let go extremely quickly.

They need to grow up, honestly.

Dumbledore sends Sirius to alert “the old crowd,” including Lupin! I wish that Sirius could have stayed with Harry longer, but they both understand that there are important matters that need to be attended to. Snape is given another assignment, one that is not defined here, but one that Snape was prepared for. If you think about it, of all of them, Snape has probably been anticipating Voldemort’s return the longest, since he could see the Dark Mark on his arm coming back. He knew what was going to happen, at least in the general sense, and he knew what would have to happen after — his role as a spy. After taking care of this, Dumbledore bids them goodbye and goes to meet with the Diggorys.

And now we come to what I think is the saddest part of this book, even more sad than Cedric’s death. Harry has been able to put off feeling the raw emotions of everything that has happened: the terror, the pain, the sadness, and the crushing guilt. It all comes out after Mrs. Weasley tells him to try and think about what he might do with his winnings. Harry doesn’t want the money. He wasn’t supposed to win. It should have been Cedric’s. Cedric should have been the champion and should have won, but instead he died because Harry suggested they take the Cup together.

Mrs. Weasley set the potion down on the bedside cabinet, bent down, and put her arms around Harry. He had no memory of ever being hugged like this, as though by a mother. The full weight of everything he had seen that night seemed to fall in upon him as Mrs. Weasley held him to her. His mother’s face, his father’s voice, the sight of Cedric, dead on the ground all started spinning in his head until he could hardly bear it, until he was screwing up his face against the howl of misery fighting to get out of him.

Imagine what it’s like to live your entire life and not know the feel of a mother’s arms around you, holding you, protecting you, taking care of you. Setting aside the general abuse that Harry received growing up at the Dursleys, children need to have physical contact in order to grow up healthy and HARRY HAS NEVER HAD THAT EVER. He’s never been hugged by a family member. Never been touched, except to be smacked around, until he was 11 years old and left the Dursleys’ house. HOW DID HE GROW UP SO DAMN NORMAL!!!!

I could go on, but I won’t. It just makes me hate the Dursleys even more than I already do.

There’s a weird moment where Hermione slams a window, but we’ll get to that next chapter. For right now, Harry needs to take the rest of his potion and get some sleep.

Chapter 37

Oh boy. How do we wrap up this whole traumatic experience? Harry himself admits that he only remembers bits and pieces over the next several days. This boy is overloaded right now. One thing that is bothering him is this prize money he was given. He really, really, really doesn’t want it. He tries to give it to Cedric’s parents, but they don’t want it either. They also tell Harry that they don’t blame him for Cedric’s death and thank him for bringing Cedric’s body back to them.

Dumbledore does address the school at some point and ask them to please not bother Harry with the specifics of what happened. Surprisingly, the student body does just that. Harry spends a lot of time with just Ron and Hermione, knowing he doesn’t have to worry about what people are thinking when he’s with them. All they can do is wait until they hear about something going on outside of Hogwarts until it’s time to go back home.

And Harry is going back to the Dursleys. Even with everything that has happened, even with Voldemort coming back into the world, even with Mrs. Weasley trying to intervene on Harry’s behalf.

“She went to ask him if you could come straight to us this summer,” Ron said. “But he wants you to go back to the Dursleys, at least at first.”

“Why?” said Harry.

“She said Dumbledore’s got his reasons,” said Ron, shaking his head darkly. “I suppose we’ve got to trust him, haven’t we?”

They go down to visit Hagrid, and Hagrid is his usual, wonderful self. He’s also been talking to Madame Maxime again. Hagrid always suspected Voldemort would return and he’s also very proud of all that Harry has done. Also, Dumbledore has a task for Hagrid to complete over the summer, along with Maxime, if she chooses to come. Hagrid has been trying to convince her, and he thinks she’ll agree to it. He won’t give any details though, which does make one think that it might be a bit dangerous.

The end of the school year finally arrives. At the final feast, instead of celebrating the winner of the House Cup, the Great Hall is draped in black banners in honor of Cedric. Mad-Eye Moody is back — the real one this time, and he is even more twitchy and paranoid than he was before. Harry sees that Karkaroff’s chair is empty and wonders if Karkaroff was able to get away, or if he got caught by the Death Eaters he had betrayed.

And then there’s Snape.

What was it that Snape had done on Dumbledore’s orders, the night that Voldemort had returned? And why . . . why . . . was Dumbledore so convinced that Snape was truly on their side? He had been their spy, Dumbledore had said so in the Pensieve. Snape had turned spy against Voldemort, “at great personal risk.” Was that the job he had taken up again? Had he made contact with the Death Eaters, perhaps? Pretended that he had never really gone over to Dumbledore, that he had been, like Voldemort himself, biding his time?

At this point, it’s hard to say. It is one of the reasons that Snape is one of my favorite characters of the series (that, and his brilliant portrayal by Alan Rickman in the films). I will never say that he is a good person, not in the slightest, but there are so many mysteries and layers to the man. I find him absolutely intriguing and wish we could someday have his story, as told by him. Oh well. I guess that’s what fanfiction is for.

Dumbledore says some words about Cedric and they all raise their glasses to toast their fallen friend. Cho is crying at the Ravenclaw table. Dumbledore makes a decision here to not just honor Cedric, but to give the full account of exactly how Cedric died. Voldemort is back. The Ministry may not want people to know that, but it’s true and Dumbledore is going to say so. He also mentions Harry’s role in situation, fighting Voldemort and risking his life to bring Cedric’s body back to Hogwarts. Addressing their foreign guests, Dumbledore has these last remarks.

“Every guest in this Hall will be welcomed back here at any time, should they wish to come. I say to you all, once again — in the light of Lord Voldemort’s return, we are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided. Lord Voldemort’s gift for spreading discord and enmity is very great. We can fight it only by showing an equally strong bond of friendship and trust. Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open.”

He does seem to be addressing this to the Durmstrang students in particular, which if you remember correctly, attend a school where the Dark Arts are much more prevalent. With the Dark Lord returning, I hope it gives some of them comfort that they would have a safe haven at Hogwarts should they choose it.

As they are getting ready to leave, Fleur comes over to say goodbye. Krum also comes over specifically to speak to Hermione, but also tells Harry that he respected Cedric. Ron also finally gets his autograph from Krum, which he’s wanted since the World Cup.

On the train, Hermione pulls out the newspaper. Harry looks at it, but oddly enough, there are no stories about him, or about any of the tragic events of the Triwizard Tournament, other than a brief mention that he won. Hermione thinks that Fudge is keeping it quiet, but Harry knows that Fudge would never be able to stop Rita Skeeter. Yeah, about that. Hermione tells them that they don’t have to worry much about Rita Skeeter. She found out how Rita was getting all her information.

“Well, it was you, really, who gave me the idea, Harry,” she said.

“Did I?” said Harry, perplexed. “How?”

Bugging,” said Hermione happily.

“But you said they didn’t work –”

“Oh not electronic bugs,” said Hermione. “No, you see . . . Rita Skeeter” — Hermione’s voice trembled with quiet triumph — “is an unregistered Animagus. She can turn –”

Hermione pulled a small sealed glass jar out of her bag.

“– into a beetle.”

Oh gods. Oh Hermione. She is keeping Rita Skeeter trapped in a glass jar. They think back and realize that yes, they had noticed a beetle during specific moments when Rita would have overheard key information. Malfoy knew about it and would feed her information, along with the rest of the Slytherins too. Hermione caught Rita, put her in the jar, and put an Unbreakable Charm on the jar so that Rita couldn’t transform back. She won’t let her out until they get back to London, and even then, Rita needs to behave herself or Hermione will let everyone know how she got her information.

At this point, Malfoy and his goons come by and start throwing around nasty words, not just about them, but about Cedric too. He doesn’t get to speak long before a whole host of spells hit them, not just from Harry, Ron and Hermione, but also from Fred and George, who saw them pass by and thought they might be up to something. They all settle in to play cards and Harry asks about who they were blackmailing earlier on in the year.

Yeah, that seems so mundane and so long ago, doesn’t it?

Turns out, they were angry with Ludo Bagman. They had made that bet at the World Cup and won quite a bit of money off Bagman, who then paid them in leprechaun gold. Which vanished, because that’s what leprechaun gold does. At first, the twins thought it might be a mistake, but then Bagman kept ignoring them, finally telling them that they had been too young to gamble in the first place. But then, he wouldn’t give them their original money back either. Yeah, Bagman is a scumbag. He owes money all over the place, including with the goblins, which is why no one has seen him since the tournament.

They pull up at Kings Cross and Harry asks for the twins to stay back a moment. He then proceeds to give them his Triwizard winnings. At first, they won’t take it, but Harry insists. It’s an investment in the joke shop.

“Listen,” said Harry firmly. “If you don’t take it, I’m throwing it down the drain. I don’t want it and I don’t need it. But I could do with a few laughs. We could all do with a few laughs. I’ve got a feeling we’re going to need them more than usual before long . . .

“Just do me one favor, okay? Buy Ron some different dress robes and say they’re from you.”

I love that so much.

As Harry leaves his friends, it’s a much different atmosphere. Harry is never happy to return to the Dursleys, but after the events of this year, it’s really hard to say goodbye. Mrs. Weasley tells him that they are going to try to get Harry with them as soon as they can. Harry knows that one day, he will have to face Voldemort again, but right now, there is nothing he can do. Just be ready.

And that’s it! The end of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire! This one is quite a ride, isn’t it! I’ll be starting Order of the Phoenix next week, so be on the lookout for that!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 34

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In Chapter 34, Harry has his long awaited showdown with Voldemort. Let’s go!

Voldemort is so nasty! Not only does he have Harry right where he wants him, but he has to play with him, like a cat with a mouse. After Wormtail cuts Harry free from his ropes, the other Death Eaters close in around them. There is no where to run, nowhere to hide. Voldemort asks if Harry has learned how to duel, as though this were some sort of civilized meeting.

“We bow to each other, Harry,” said Voldemort, bending a little, but keeping his snakelike face upturned to Harry. “Come, the niceties must be observed . . . Dumbledore would like you to show manners . . . Bow to death, Harry . . .”

Harry doesn’t want to give Voldemort the satisfaction, but then feels some magic power forcing him to bend — the Imperius curse. Voldemort immediately casts the Cruciatus curse at Harry, which was more pain than he had ever felt before. While Harry is trying to stand up, shaking, Voldemort asks Harry if he wants to be hit with that curse again and casts the Imperius curse to get him to answer. Harry is able to fight the curse, but only barely. He doesn’t want to look like he’s begging in any way, shape, or form. It may seem like a small thing, but his ability to throw off one of the Unforgivable curses quiets all the Death Eaters, who had been laughing up until this point.

Voldemort tries to curse Harry again, but Harry flings himself out of the way and the curse hits a nearby gravestone. It is only a momentary break. It’s not really a hiding spot — Voldemort knows exactly where Harry is. When Voldemort comes around the gravestone, Harry does the only thing he can think of, even though he doesn’t think it will work: he casts Expelliarmus. When he does, something weird happens. Voldemort had tried to cast Avada Kedavra at the same time, but the jets of light coming from both their wands connects somehow.

And then — nothing could have prepared Harry for this — he felt his feet lift from the ground. He and Voldemort were both being raised into the air, their wands still connected by that thread of shimmering golden light. They glided away from the tombstone of Voldemort’s father and then came to rest on a patch of ground that was clear and free of graves . . .

The golden thread connecting Harry and Voldemort splintered; though the wands remained connected, a thousand more beams arced high over Harry and Voldemort, crisscrossing all around them, until they were enclosed in a golden, dome-shaped web, a cage of light, beyond which the Death Eaters circled like jackals, their cries strangely muffled now . . .

This is some weird stuff, nothing like anything we’ve ever read about in this series.

Harry’s wand is vibrating violently and it’s all he can do to hang on to it. There are several large beads of light along the thread connecting them and Harry is afraid that if one of them hits his wand, it will be destroyed. He tries to force them back towards Voldemort, concentrating very hard, and it works somehow. As the beads connect with Voldemort’s wand, various shadowy shapes start to appear. First, a hand. Next, the body of Cedric Diggory, which tells Harry to hold on. Next, an old man that Harry recognizes from his dreams, who tells Harry to fight. Next, Bertha Jorkins, who tells Harry not to let go.

It’s clear that whatever these beads of light are, they are making Voldemort’s wand regurgitate the last spells it cast. For the murders, a shadowy echo of the person, more substantial than a ghost, but short lived. As such, we know who the next shapes will be.

The smoky shadow of a young woman with long hair fell to the ground as Bertha had done, straightened up, and looked at him . . . Harry, his arms shaking madly now, looked back into the ghostly face of his mother.

“Your father’s coming . . .” she said quietly. “Hold on for your father . . . It will be all right . . . Hold on . . .”

This is the first time in his memory that he has been able to talk to his mother, and it’s at a time like this!

After James Potter emerges from Voldemort’s wand, he tells Harry to get back to the Portkey. Cedric’s shadow asks Harry to take his body back to his father. Harry pulls upwards on his wand, breaks the connection and runs. The shadowy figures block Voldemort, but other Death Eaters give chase. Harry is able to make it to Cedric’s body, but can’t get to the Triwizard Cup. He casts an Accio spell, catches the Cup, and is jerked away from the scene, leaving only Voldemort’s screams of anger behind him.

See you next time for Chapter 35!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 33

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In Chapter 33, Voldemort is back and as terrifying as ever! Let’s go!

Oh man. This is absolutely horrible and wonderful! We’ve heard about Voldemort over the course of four books now, and we finally get to see him in the flesh! He was always this vague threat in the background, something that used to be powerful, had lost that power, and might be finding a way to get it back — and now he’s here! Such a great reveal. I remember the first time reading this. My heart was in my throat the entire time.

Voldemort seems really happy to have a real body again. Wormtail is still bleeding on the ground and that giant snake is also there, slithering around. When Voldemort asks for Wormtail’s arm, Wormtail thinks that he’s going to heal the hand that he JUST CUT OFF, but instead Voldemort wants his other arm. On that arm is a tattoo of the Dark Mark. When Voldemort touches it, Harry’s scar bursts into pain again and Wormtail also cries out. Voldemort muses on how many will return to him, and then turns to Harry.

“You stand, Harry Potter, upon the remains of my late father,” he hissed softly. “A Muggle and a fool . . . very like your dear mother. But they both had their uses, did they not? Your mother died to defend you as a child . . . and I killed my father, and see how useful he has proved himself, in death . . .”

How evil do you have to be to kill your own parent? And how evil do you have to be to call a mother’s sacrifice “useful?” Voldemort continues telling how his mother had died giving birth, but his father had left him behind in a Muggle orphanage. Sure, it’s a tragic story, but that doesn’t excuse all the horrible deeds he’s done since then!

They are interrupted by the arrival of Apparating wizards, all hooded and masked, cautiously looking around and then dropping to their knees to kiss Voldemort’s robes. Voldemort greets them, but also says that he can sense guilt. None of his followers tried to find him. They all believed he had been defeated and was gone for good, claiming to have been forced into his service instead of working for him willingly.

“And then I ask myself, but how could they have believed I would not rise again? They, who knew the steps I took, long ago, to guard myself against mortal death? They, who had seen proofs of the immensity of my power in the times when I was mightier than any wizard living?”

It really sounds like he’s talking about the horcruxes here, and I wonder how many of the Death Eaters truly knew what he had done. We know the diary was one, and that Lucius Malfoy had it in his possession, but he was also pretty flippant about it, handing it over to 11 year old Ginny Weasley. I wonder how much the Death Eaters understood the depths of what Voldemort had done.

Voldemort casts Crucio at the first Death Eater who begs forgiveness. He’s not in a forgiving mood, apparently. He wants repayment for their abandonment, although Wormtail has started to earn his way back. The thing is, Wormtail did not return out of loyalty — he returned because of fear. Still, the fear worked and helped Voldemort return, so Voldemort decides to heal Wormtail’s stump. He gives Wormtail a shining silver hand to take its place.

So let’s see, who all do we have in Death Eater masks, huh? Voldemort names the one he just Crucio-ed Avery. He also addresses Lucius Malfoy. Voldemort is not happy with Lucius, especially since Lucius has spent the last years pretending to be respectable and not trying to find his master.

“My Lord, I was constantly on the alert,” came Lucius Malfoy’s voice swiftly from beneath the hood. “Had there been any sign from you, and whisper of your whereabouts, I would have been at your side immediately, nothing could have prevented me –”

“And yet you ran from my Mark, when a faithful Death Eater sent it into the sky last summer?” said Voldemort lazily, and Mr. Malfoy stopped talking abruptly. “Yes, I know all about that, Lucius . . . You have disappointed me . . . I expect more faithful service in the future . . .”

I get the feeling that Lucius was perfectly happy being an ordinary terrible person without Voldemort being around.

Other named Death Eaters: Macnair (the executioner who almost killed Buckbeak!), Crabbe and Goyle (fathers of the Crabbe and Goyle we know), and Nott. According to Voldemort there are six that are missing. Three are dead. One is too afraid to return. One has left him forever and will be killed. And one, his most faithful servant, has already reentered his service and is at Hogwarts. More deliberate misdirection, and I love it! How easy is it to believe that the Death Eater at Hogwarts is Snape! We already know that he used to be one, and now Voldemort is basically naming him as such! And that’s not even who he’s talking about! It’s so brilliant!

Just as a guess, the one who is too cowardly to return has to be Karkaroff, right? I’m pretty sure it is.

Whoever this servant at Hogwarts is, he is responsible for making sure that Harry arrived at Voldemort’s “rebirthing party.” But how did this all happen? Turns out that Harry’s mother left a special protection on him, some sort of old magic that Voldemort didn’t anticipate. The steps he had taken to repel death had kept him alive when the Avada Kadavra spell rebounded, but only just. He was powerless and unable to use a wand.

“I remember only forcing myself, sleeplessly, endlessly, second by second, to exist . . . I settled in a faraway place, in a forest, and I waited . . . Surely, one of my faithful Death Eaters would try and find me . . . one of them would come and perform the magic I could not, to restore me to a body . . . but I waited in vain . . .”

If you are a Death Eater standing in this circle, how are you not peeing your pants a little right now?

In his weakened state, Voldemort was able to possess the bodies of others, so when Quirrell came upon him in the forest, he used him to gain access to Hogwarts and to potentially steal the Sorcerer’s Stone to return to power. Well, we all know how that turned out.

Wormtail heard about Voldemort’s whereabouts after faking his death and living among the rats. He returned to serve Voldemort, but made the mistake of running into Bertha Jorkins. This was how he found out about the Triwizard Tournament and set his plans in motion. Bertha was also able to tell him of a faithful Death Eater who would be able to help him, but they needed to break a Memory Charm on her to get to the information. After that, they killed her.

Voldemort knew of a spell that would restore him to his old body, since the Sorcerer’s Stone would no longer be available, and he needed the blood of an enemy. It could have been anyone, since he had many, many enemies, but he wanted Harry’s blood so that he would be able to skirt the protection of his mother’s sacrifice. The Hogwarts Death Eater made sure that Harry was entered into the Triwizard Tournament and made sure that Harry would be able to win it, since the Cup was turned into a Portkey. It was a foolproof plan that worked perfectly, and now here we are.

And just in case we wondered how powerful Voldemort is . . .

Crucio!”

It was a pain beyond anything Harry had ever experienced; his very bones were on fire; his head was surely splitting along his scar; his eyes were rolling madly in his head; he wanted it to end . . . to black out . . . to die . . .

Here’s the thing, though: Voldemort doesn’t just want to kill Harry. He wants to defeat Harry. He doesn’t want anyone voicing any doubt that Harry is stronger than him in any way. He wants to prove that the fact Harry survived all those years ago was nothing but a fluke. And to do that, Harry will be given the chance to fight back.

“Now untie him, Wormtail, and give him back his wand.”

See you next time for Chapter 34!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 32

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In Chapter 32, everything goes wrong. Let’s go!

Before we get into the chapter, a little background on my Harry Potter reading history. I started reading the books after seeing Sorcerer’s Stone in theaters. I’ll admit, I originally thought they were just kids books and, being a mature 23 years old, I thought I was somewhat above all that. Silly, silly me. Ended up going to the first movie on a whim and completely fell in love with it. I immediately bought the book and started reading to see what the movie left out. Then I grabbed Chamber of Secrets and read it, along with Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire. Here’s the thing: Goblet of Fire was the last book out at that time, so I got this big huge revelation/cliffhanger and had to wait a few years to find out what happened when VOLDEMORT WAS BACK!!

I mean, yeah, everyone else did, too. But I had gotten used to getting the next book right away for the first four books. It was rough.

Back to the story.

Cedric and Harry realize that the cup was actually a Portkey and has transported them somewhere creepy: a graveyard. Quickly, they see a hooded figure carrying what looks like a baby or a bundle of something. Harry doesn’t recognize the person, but soon his scar starts to hurt with excruciating pain.

From far away, above his head, he heard a high, cold voice say, “Kill the spare.”

A swishing noise and a second voice, which screeched the words into the night: “Avada Kedavra!”

A blast of green light blazed through Harry’s eyelids, and he heard something heavy fall to the ground beside him; the pain in his scar reached such a pitch that he retched, and then it diminished; terrified of what he was about to see, he opened his stinging eyes.

Cedric was lying spread-eagled on the ground beside him. He was dead.

Just like that. JUST LIKE THAT! A major character throughout this book is gone. It’s so suddenly shocking and unexpectedly horrible.

The hooded man drags Harry towards a large headstone, which reveals the name on the stone, Tom Riddle, and the face of the man, Wormtail. That’s right. Old Peter Pettigrew. He ties Harry to the headstone and gags him while Harry watches the bundle that Wormtail had put on the ground. There’s something moving in it and Harry doesn’t want to see what’s inside. There is a huge cauldron set up by the grave which Wormtail sets a fire beneath. He grabs the bundle and unwraps a really ugly, disgusting thing.

It was hairless and scaly-looking, a dark, raw, reddish black. Its arms and legs were thin and feeble, and its face — no child alive ever had a face like that — flat and snakelike, with gleaming red eyes.

So yeah, not a baby. Wormtail is helping it, but Harry can see that Wormtail is also repulsed by it as well. He drops the creature into the cauldron and starts the spell, adding bone dust from the grave Harry is tied to. Wormtail also cuts off his own hand and adds it to the cauldron. The final ingredient is Harry’s blood, which Wormtail gets by cutting Harry’s arm with a dagger. Once the blood is added, Wormtail collapses to the ground holding his stump where his missing hand was. Harry keeps hoping and hoping that the creature drowned in that cauldron, that the spell didn’t work, that it’s dead. But it’s not. A tall, thin man rises from the cauldron and asks Wormtail for his robe.

The thin man stepped out of the cauldron, staring at Harry . . and Harry stared back into the face that had haunted his nightmares for three years. Whiter than a skull, with wide, livid scarlet eyes and a nose that was flat as a snake’s with slits for nostrils . . .

Lord Voldemort had risen again.

Since this is a pretty short chapter, let’s just stop for a moment and mention how wonderful this scene was in the movie. It’s so disgusting and raw and terrifying. If you hadn’t made the distinction before, this is where you know for sure that this isn’t just a kids’ story anymore. This would have scared me to pieces as a child! I haven’t commented much on the casting, but Ralph Fiennes and Timothy Spall are perfect in these two roles.

See you next time for Chapter 33!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 31

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In Chapter 31, the final task is upon us. Let’s go!

You know things are getting serious when Dumbledore is worried, or at least, that’s how Ron and Hermione feel. They are also very surprised that Dumbledore still trusts Snape, knowing that he had been a Death Eater. Hermione is frustrated by many things: one, that Rita Skeeter was the one who told them that Bagman had a troubled past, and two, that Fudge would dare accuse Maxime just because of her heritage.

One thing that Harry hasn’t mentioned is what he had learned about Neville’s parents. He kept his word that he wouldn’t tell, but he can’t help thinking about it.

In the meantime, they continue researching and practicing spells for Harry to use in the maze. While practicing in an empty classroom, they see Malfoy, Crabbe and Goyle standing outside. Malfoy is holding his hand up to his mouth and speaking into it, “like he’s using a walkie-talkie,” according to Harry. Hermione reminds them that electronic devices don’t work around Hogwarts and gets them back on task, but it’s still weird.

The morning of the third task, Rita Skeeter strikes again. There is a new article in the Daily Prophet about how Harry is possibly “disturbed and dangerous” due to his collapsing in class and complaining about his scar hurting. There are also quotes from Draco Malfoy, explaining that Harry can speak Parseltongue, which connects Harry to the Dark Arts. Harry doesn’t seem too upset by the article, but Hermione is still trying to figure out how Rita Skeeter seems to know all this stuff when she’s been banned from the grounds completely.

An odd, dreamy expression suddenly came over Hermione’s face. She slowly raised a hand and ran her fingers through her hair.

“Are you all right?” said Ron, frowning at her.

“Yes,” said Hermione breathlessly. She ran her fingers through her hair again, and then held her hand up to her mouth, as though speaking into an invisible walkie-talkie. Harry and Ron stared at each other.

“I’ve had an idea,” Hermione said, gazing into space. “I think I know . . . because then no one would be able to see . . . even Moody . . . and she’d have been able to get onto the window ledge . . . but she’s not allowed . . . she’s definitely not allowed . . . I think we’ve got her! Just give me two seconds in the library — just to make sure!”

When Hermione gets excited about an idea, she stops making sense. It’s really funny. She runs off, leaving Harry and Ron staring after her. Professor McGonagall comes up to tell Harry that the champions are having a reception after breakfast for their families who have come to watch the final. Harry doesn’t think he’ll have anyone, as he can’t imagine the Dursleys coming to Hogwarts for anything, but instead the Weasleys come! This is why they are the best! They knew that Harry wouldn’t have any family at the final task and decided to stand in for them. I love them so much!

Also, Cedric’s dad, Amos, is there and is mean to Harry because of all the attention Harry has been getting taking away from Cedric’s place as champion. Dude, it’s not Harry’s fault! Mr. Weasley even points out that Mr. Diggory should know how horrible Rita Skeeter is, but he doesn’t seem to care.

We also find out that Percy has not been doing well due to Mr. Crouch’s disappearance. The Ministry keeps questioning him about the instructions that Mr. Crouch was supposedly sending in.

They walk around the grounds and then go back to the Great Hall for lunch, surprising Ron and Hermione. Harry notices that Mrs. Weasley is behaving a bit coldly towards Hermione.

Harry looked between them, then said, “Mrs. Weasley, you didn’t believe that rubbish Rita Skeeter wrote in Witch Weekly, did you? Because Hermione’s not my girlfriend.”

It’s funny though. I have no idea which reason was behind Mrs. Weasley’s concern: worried about Harry getting his heart broken, worried about Ginny getting hers broken (since she has a crush on Harry), or worried about Ron getting his heart broken (since he definitely has a crush on Hermione at this point, and you know Mrs. Weasley knows that). In any case, it’s time for the third task! Everyone heads down towards the Quidditch pitch and, oddly enough, Harry actually feels somewhat confident about things. He at least feels more prepared this time. The champions are told that teachers will be patrolling the outside of the maze, so they can send up sparks to call for help. This actually seems much easier than the other two tasks.

Harry and Cedric get to enter the maze first, since they are currently tied for first place. They enter together and then split apart. Harry goes for a while without seeing any obstacles, but soon runs into Cedric again, who just got away from one of Hagrid’s Blast-Ended Skrewts. Harry does see a dementor, but casts his Patronus and finds out that it’s a boggart and dispatches it quickly.

The next obstacle is a weird golden mist that reverses gravity or something. Harry feels like he’s dangling from the ground, which is suddenly above him. He is able to pull away from it and starts looking for Fleur, who he heard scream, but doesn’t see her anywhere. He does run into another Skrewt, but is able to slow it down and get away. He keeps hitting dead ends, but then hears Krum casting a Crucio on Cedric. He stuns Krum and helps Cedric up. Cedric is surprised, because he thought Krum was a good guy. Harry did too. They send up red sparks so that Krum can be picked up and then set off in different directions again.

Harry comes upon another new creature: a sphinx. It tells him that he has to solve a riddle to get past.

“First think of the person who lives in disguise,

Who deals in secrets and tells naught but lies.

Next, tell me what’s always last thing to mend,

The middle of middle and end of the end?

And finally give me the sound often heard

During the search for a hard-to-find word.

Now string them together, and answer me this,

Which creature would you be unwilling to kiss?”

There are several creatures Harry doesn’t want to kiss. Blast-Ended Skrewts come to mind! I was worried about Harry with this one, as he’s not necessarily known for his riddle solving skills. That’s more Hermione’s forte. Harry does figure it out though – the answer was a spider. True, I wouldn’t want to kiss a spider either.

Harry can see the Triwizard Cup now. He also sees Cedric ahead of him running towards it, but Cedric is attacked by a giant spider. Maybe the spider just wants a kiss? It’s feeling a bit miffed about the riddle? Together, Harry and Cedric manage to fight it off, but Harry’s leg is badly injured in the process. He tells Cedric to take the cup since he got there first. Cedric pulls Harry up and tells him to do it, since he’s helped him so much. They argue back and forth about who should take the cup.

“Both of us,” Harry said.

“What?”

“We’ll take it at the same time. It’s still a Hogwarts victory. We’ll tie for it.”

It’s a noble idea, and great for the school, but it sets in motion a tragedy that will take Harry a long time to get over. When they grab the cup, they are jerked away into a “howl of wind and swirling color.”

See you next time for Chapter 31!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 30

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In Chapter 30, Harry gets lost in Dumbledore’s thoughts. Let’s go!

Oh, I meant to do so much more reading and blogging this past weekend, including several chapters of Goblet of Fire. Oops. Oh well. Moving on!

We get more of Sassy Harry in the beginning of this chapter, and I love that! He just arrived at Dumbledore’s office door and overheard some fairly stupid ideas from Cornelius Fudge (like Hagrid or Maxime could be responsible for Crouch’s disappearance because half-giant=dangerous). Fudge starts up with his normal fake cheerfulness that he has around Harry, asking him about the Crouch situation, since Harry was the one who found him.

“Yes,” said Harry. Then, feeling it was pointless to pretend that he hadn’t overheard what they had been saying, he added, “I didn’t see Madame Maxime anywhere, though, and she’d have a job hiding, wouldn’t she?”

I love when Harry gets like this. It’s a breath of fresh air.

He tells Dumbledore that he needs to speak to him, but Dumbledore is escorting the Minister on a walk around the grounds. He tells Harry to wait for him in his office and they all leave Harry alone there. Well, not alone. Fawkes is there, though he doesn’t do much. Harry looks around the room and sees a weird silvery light coming from a cabinet. And, being Harry, he has to investigate. What he finds is a shallow stone bowl covered in runes and symbols with a strange, white-silver substance in it. At first he wants to touch the stuff, which is a stupid idea, Harry. You’ve lived in the wizarding world for almost four years now, and you don’t realize that randomly touching a substance that you don’t recognize could make bad things happen?

Instead he pokes at it with his wand, which makes the stuff start moving around and creates what looks like a window in the basin, looking down into a room that Harry doesn’t recognize. He leans closer and accidentally touches the silvery stuff with his nose, which pitches him into the basin, falling into the strange room.

“The room was dimly lit; he thought it might even be underground, for there were no windows, merely torches in brackets such as the ones that illuminated the walls of Hogwarts . . . Harry saw that rows and rows of witches and wizards were seated around every wall on what seemed to be benches rising in levels. An empty chair stood in the very center of the room. There was something about the chair that gave Harry an ominous feeling. Chains encircled the arms of it, as though its occupants were usually tied to it.

Harry ends up sitting on one of those benches, although none of the witches or wizards seem to notice his sudden appearance. He looks over and sees that he is sitting right next to Dumbledore, but when Harry tries to explain and apologize, Dumbledore doesn’t seem to see or hear him. It reminds Harry of when he fell into Tom Riddle’s diary and landed in Riddle’s memory.

As Harry ponders all of this, a door opens and a man is led into the room by two dementors. They sit him in the chair, which chains his arms to it, and Harry realizes that it’s a much younger looking Karkaroff. He looks terrible. A man starts to speak in the room and Harry seems that it’s a younger Mr. Crouch. He says that Karkaroff was brought from Azkaban to give them information. Which Karkaroff does. He has names of Death Eaters and wants to give them to the Ministry as proof that he has renounced his old ways.

Harry sees Moody sitting behind Dumbledore. Moody is not happy that they are planning to let Karkaroff go, after he went to all the trouble to apprehend him. Karkaroff starts giving names, but one by one, they are deemed useless: Dolohov (captured soon after Karkaroff was), Rosier (dead), Travers and Mulciber (already on the Ministry’s list). Karkaroff is getting desperate and finally tells them the name Rookwood, a Ministry member who works in the Department of Ministries. Crouch takes the information and goes to dismiss Karkaroff back to the dementors, but Karkaroff has one more name to give.

“Snape!” he shouted. “Severus Snape!”

“Snape has been cleared by this council,” said Crouch disdainfully. “He has been vouched for by Albus Dumbledore.”

“No!” shouted Karkaroff, straining at the chains that bound him to the chair. “I assure you! Severus Snape is a Death Eater!”

Dumbledore had gotten to his feet.

“I have given evidence already on this matter,” he said calmly. “Severus Snape was indeed a Death Eater. However, he rejoined our side before Lord Voldemort’s downfall and turned spy for us, at great personal risk. He is now no more a Death Eater than I am.”

An interesting exchange, to be sure. Karkaroff is led away and the scene changes. Now the same courtroom is more relaxed, and the person in the hot seat is Ludo Bagman. The chair doesn’t chain him up though. I guess it didn’t think he was all that dangerous. Crouch is still presenting questions and accuses Bagman of passing information to Voldemort’s supporters. Turns out, that supporter was Rookwood, so I guess Karkaroff’s information was sound. According to Bagman, he had no idea Rookwood was in league with Voldemort. Rookwood was a friend of his dad’s who had promised to help him get a job in the Ministry once Bagman retired from playing professional Quidditch. The jury is sympathetic and vote to let Bagman go. Crouch is not pleased, but there isn’t much he can do.

The scene changes again and it is a very different atmosphere this time. It’s nearly silent, except for a witch sitting next to Crouch sobbing. Six dementors lead four people in: two men, one woman, and a teenage boy. Crouch begins the trial.

“You have been brought here before the Council of Magical Law,” he said clearly, “so that we may pass judgment on you, for a crime so heinous –”

“Father,” said the boy with the straw-colored hair. “Father . . . please . . .”

“– that we have rarely heard the like of it within this court,” said Crouch, speaking more loudly, drowning out his son’s voice. “We have heard the evidence against you. The four of you stand accused of capturing an Auror — Frank Longbottom — and subjecting him to the Cruciatus Curse, believing him to have knowledge of the present whereabouts of your exiled master, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named –“

The boy gets more and more hysterical, saying over and over that he didn’t do it and begging his father to believe him. Crouch continues, stating that not only did they torture Frank Longbottom, but also his wife. The jury unanimously votes that they are guilty. As they are led away, the woman unrepentant, the boy screaming his innocence, Harry is pulled out of the memory by the present-day Dumbledore, who has just returned. Harry immediately apologizes for snooping, but Dumbledore understands. He tells Harry that the bowl is called a Pensieve and is used to store thoughts and memories. He even shows Harry how to extract a memory and add it to the bowl. Harry sees a few more memories: Snape telling Dumbledore that something is “coming back . . .stronger and clearer than ever,” a younger Bertha Jorkins talking to Dumbledore about something that happened in school.

Dumbledore asks Harry what he came to see him for. Harry explains his vision in Divination and tells him about when his scar hurt over the summer, which Dumbledore already knew about. Turns out Sirius has been writing to Dumbledore too. Harry asks why his scar is hurting and Dumbledore says it’s because they are “connected by the curse that failed.” It is very probable that the visions Harry is having are true. Dumbledore has a lot of ideas of what might be happening, due to seeing connections to what had happened during Voldemort’s rise to power last time. Three disappearances (the muggle Frank Bryce, Bertha Jorkins, and now Crouch). The Ministry doesn’t believe that these incidents are connected at all.

Harry asks if the Longbottoms mentioned in the trial are Neville’s parents. Dumbledore asks if Harry ever wondered why Neville was raised by his grandmother, which Harry realizes he never asked about.

“Yes, they were talking about Neville’s parents,” said Dumbledore. “His father, Frank, was an Auror just like Professor Moody. He and his wife were tortured for information about Voldemort’s whereabouts after he lost his powers, as you heard.”

“So they’re dead?” said Harry quietly.

“No,” said Dumbledore, his voice full of a bitterness Harry had never heard there before. “They are insane. They are both in St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. I believe Neville visits them, with his grandmother, during the holidays. They do not recognize him.”

This is by far one of the most heartbreaking parts of this series, the fate of the Longbottoms. And Neville! Poor, sweet Neville! The first time I read this, I actually had to put the book down for a few minutes. Harry is just as horrified, not just by what happened, but also because he had known Neville for four years and had never bothered to ask what had happened to his parents. He asks if Dumbledore knows if Mr. Crouch’s son was really involved, but Dumbledore doesn’t know. Dumbledore also confirms that Bagman has never been accused of Dark activity since, and neither has Snape. When Harry asks how Dumbledore can really believe that Snape stopped supporting Voldemort, Dumbledore says that it is a private matter between him and Snape.

He also asks Harry to not speak of what he learned about the Longbottoms, but let Neville reveal that information when he feels it’s right. I honestly don’t believe Harry would have told anyone, but it’s probably for the best that Dumbledore says this. Even Ron and Hermione don’t need to know that part. Dumbledore dismisses Harry by wishing him luck on the third task.

See you next time for Chapter 31!

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – Chapter 29

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In Chapter 29, Harry tries to make sense of the disappearance of Mr. Crouch and has a terrifying vision. Let’s go!

This chapter opens up with Harry, Ron and Hermione trying to figure out what the heck happened to Mr. Crouch. It’s a valid question! He seemed really weak, and it’s doubtful that Krum did anything to him since he was stunned. And you can’t Disapparate on Hogwarts grounds (just ask Hermione, she loves reminding people of this). Besides, Crouch was acting so weird.

“I’ve told you, he wasn’t making much sense,” said Harry. “He said he wanted to warn Dumbledore about something. He definitely mentioned Bertha Jorkins, and he seemed to think she was dead. He kept saying stuff was his fault . . . He mentioned his son.”

“Well, that was his fault,” said Hermione testily.

“He was out of his mind,” said Harry. “Half the time he seemed to think his wife and son were still alive, and he kept talking to Percy about work and giving him instructions.”

This sounds terrifying, to be honest.

They are up in the Owlery discussing this, but hush up when they hear voices approaching. The voices are talking about “it’s time to play dirty” and “blackmail.” The owners of those voices? Fred and George. When Ron questions them, they refuse to say anything and get angry. They send a letter to someone, making sure to hide the name, and then leave. Ron worries that they might do anything to make money at this point – they are determined to start their joke shop.

After class, they track down Moody and ask if he was able to find Crouch. He wasn’t. He even tried the Marauder’s Map, but Crouch didn’t appear on it. When Hermione points out that there were other ways for Crouch to disappear, Moody comments that she ought to think of being an Auror as well. Ron suggests that maybe someone pulled Crouch on a broom and flew away, which Moody agrees could be a possibility. He also tells them to stay out of it, that there is nothing they can do. Harry needs to focus on getting through the final task. That’s all.

Sirius also sends Harry a letter letting him have it for going off alone with Krum. He tells Harry to be more careful. In the meantime, Ron and Hermione help Harry start to research spells to help him get through the maze. They don’t have much time left. After their practice session, Harry and Ron head to Divination, their favorite class (haha). Trelawney pulls out a display of the solar system and starts teaching, but the room is so warm dark, Harry falls asleep.

He has a dream. He’s flying on a giant owl to an old house. Inside the house: Voldemort and Wormtail and a huge snake.

“Now, Wormtail,” said the cold voice, “perhaps one more little reminder why I will not tolerate another blunder from you . . .”

“My Lord . . . no . . . I beg you . . .”

The tip of a wand emerged from around the back of the chair. It was pointing at Wormtail.

Crucio!”

Harry wakes up on the floor of the classroom with his head hurting so bad he can barely see. Trelawney thinks he’s having vision due to the “extraordinary claivoyant vibrations,” but Harry tries to pretend that it’s just a headache and rushes out of the room, claiming to go to the hospital wing. Instead, he heads straight to Dumbledore’s office. The door is closed and Harry can hear voices inside belonging to Moody and Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic. They are discussing the Barty Crouch situation. Fudge seems to think that either Crouch has “finally cracked” or that maybe Hagrid or Madame Maxime had something to do with it, since this happened somewhat near the Beauxbatons carriage and clearly, with their giant heritage, they could be dangerous. Shut up, Fudge! Get out of here with your bigoted ideas! Finally, Moody tells them they need to wrap things up, because Harry is at the door.

See you next time for Chapter 30!