Yo! Am I ever going to tell you what Charlie did? No, no I'm not. Why? Because I personally find it funnier to allow minds to wander and come up with their own bizarre theories. Do I care if you disagree? No, not at all. Thank you to all readers so far!
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any of its characters...
Harry and his friends took a rather long and unnecessary detour on their way up to Gryffindor Tower, spending that time talking and wondering what was going to happen now. The adults, Hermione claimed, surely weren't going to be pleased that Harry had walked off without hearing his scores, but Harry simply shrugged at that. It wasn't like he cared about winning. He just wanted to survive.
He was competing because he had no other choice-because, according to the adults, the magical binding contract would take away his magic if he didn't. Even if he got zero scores all around for the entire tournament, it still counted as him competing, which meant the contract would be fulfilled. So in other words, he didn't give a shit about how he scored, so long as he didn't lose his magic.
When they finally entered the tower, it was to find what was clearly a party, everyone celebrating his 'victory' and it took Ron all of two seconds to approach him to apologize. Harry stared at him, then turned on his heel and walked out, despite the voices calling him back and congratulating him.
Hypocritical, shallow idiots can go fuck themselves, he thought mutinously, not in the mood to deal with all this right now. Harry holed himself up in an empty classroom alone, and just minutes later was joined by Fred and George, who had brought him some food and Butterbeer, having noticed he had barely eaten anything for breakfast. With Hermione and Neville dealing with Ron, the three of them were left alone, and they sat together, talking quietly.
They didn't actually talk about anything particularly serious, the twins no doubt aware that he just wanted to relax a little. Harry appreciated that consideration, he really did. These two had always been sweet that way...
The days continued to pass. Harry sort of tried to figure out what kind of clue the golden egg was supposed to be giving him, but honestly, he was kind of procrastinating. February was a while away. There was no rush. Also, he didn't really care.
There was something else he soon learned of that he didn't care about either-the Yule Ball. Gross. Amazingly though, despite the fact that he wasn't speaking to any of them but Hermione in English, plenty of girls still approached him to ask him to go to the Ball with them. Harry refused them all, of course-in Parseltongue...and maybe also by laughing.
But there was a bit of a problem. As one of the unfortunate champions, Harry was supposed to start off the ball by dancing with his date along with the other champions. He had no choice. This was something he had to do. And that was something that just sucked balls.
He didn't really care about going with a girl, mainly because the only girl he'd even want to go with (as a friend) was Hermione, who had already been asked by someone else. So who did he want to go with? A guy, preferably. ...Neville? No, he had asked Ginny. Dean and Seamus both had dates already too. Definitely not Ron.
What about Fred or George? ...Ooh, or maybe both? One on each arm? That would be interesting, wouldn't it? Probably scandalizing too.
Just days before the ball, Harry, unable to sleep, was poring over the Marauders' Map-something he tended to do on nights like this when he couldn't sleep. It was always interesting to see which professors were patrolling where, and which Prefects were actually doing their jobs, and which students were obviously sleeping with who.
But tonight he noticed something a whole lot stranger. Bartemius Crouch was not only in the castle, but in Moody's rooms. That was odd, because he was one hundred perfect positive that Crouch hadn't been here since the first task. So what was he doing in Moody's rooms? And why was he awake, but Moody asleep, since he was the one who kept pacing?
How odd. This was something he was going to have to look into more in the morning...
He did just that, and boy did he figure out something really fucking strange! Mad-Eye Moody was not who he claimed he was at all. According to the Marauders' Map (which was always correct), Moody was being impersonated by Bartemius Crouch, while the real Moody remained in his rooms, possibly restrained or drugged or something.
But the problem with Crouch impersonating Moody, was that Harry had very definitely seen both men in the same location at the exact same time. So how could that be? He doubted the real Moody was out and about when Crouch was around, so what was the deal here? It couldn't be the use of a Time-Turner, could it? What was happening...?
On Christmas Eve, the day before the ball, after Harry saw Crouch in the Great Hall with Dumbledore (along with Moody, McGonagall, Snape, Sprout, and Flitwick), the green eyed teen hurried back up to Gryffindor Tower, leapt onto his bed, shut the hangings, and pulled out the Marauders' Map, which he examined closely and critically.
And sure enough-
"I fucking knew there was something off about all this!" he whispered ecstatically. According to the Map, Bartemius Crouch was currently in the Great Hall with the Headmaster and professors. Alastor Moody, however, was in his personal rooms, even though he had been in the Hall himself just a moment before, and would never have been able to return to his rooms that quickly thanks to his limp, which made it safe to say he had never been in the Great Hall in the first place. And the only reason Harry believed this was the case, was because in the Hall were two people with the name Bartemius Crouch.
Now, Harry frowned. Two, huh? One of those was, of course, the Crouch he knew, but that only meant that the second one was the person impersonating Moody. But who were they? Why did they have the same name as Crouch? And why were they doing this?
Harry had to find out. He had to know.
I was actually originally going to end the chapter just after Harry decides on taking the twins to the ball with him, but I had the next part written and figured it ended at a decent point as well, so I decided to add it to this chapter instead of starting the next one off with it instead. Anyway, looking forward to reviews! Laterz!