So I've noticed it's been about a year. I know, I know, I'm incredibly lazy. And horrible, and lazy.
BUT here's a new chapter!
And it's not the best, but I wanted to update!
It was November, and freezing. The Quidditch season had begun and on Saturday Harry had his first match after weeks of training: Gryffindor versus Slytherin. If they won, Gryffindor would be moved up into second place in the house championship.
Hardly anyone had seen Harry play because it was Wood's plan that Harry was the team's secret weapon, and should be, well, kept secret. But somehow the secret of Harry Potter playing the Gryffindor Seeker had leaked out. Harry's main guess was Chloe and her friends. He had seen Chloe tell a bunch of Hufflepuff's in their year all about how her father, the extraordinary James Potter, along with the rest of the Tutshill Tornadoes, was coming to watch her brother'sdebut as the youngest Gryffindor Seeker in a century.
Harry was glad he had Hermione for a friend, she helped him get through his homework – even though he was technically copying it – and leant him Quidditch Through The Ages, but he didn't have the heart to tell her he already had a copy at home. Although Hermione was friends with Harry and Ron, she was also a friend too Chloe, helping her out with her Charms and History of Magic, but they still had their disagreements over what was right and wrong to say to a teacher.
Hermione was much more lenient towards the rules now, since her life had been saved, and she was a much nicer person to be around too. The day before Harry's first game, he, Ron, Hermione and Chloe (who thought he needed a large dose of moral support so he wouldn't breakdown during his first match), Hermione had conjured up a bright blue fire, which could be carried around in a jam jar. They were standing with their backs to it, getting warm, when Snape crossed the yard. Harry noticed at once that Snape was limping. The four kids shuffled closer together, to block the fire, as they were sure it wouldn't be allowed by Snape. Unfortunately something about their guilty faces caught Snape's eye and he limped over. He hadn't seen the fire, but he seemed to be looking for a reason to tell them off anyway.
'What's that you've got there, Potter?'
'Oh, well it's some marshmallow slice my grandma made,' Chloe said. 'I'd offer you some, but you know, it was made by a Muggle, so it might go against your Slytherin values…' she said daringly and could feel Hermione's foot digging into her own.
'I was not asking you, Miss Potter,' said Snape, who glared back to Harry.
Harry held up Quidditch Through The Ages to Snape.
'Library books are not to be taken outside the school, nor should you be eating over them,' said Snape. 'Give it to me. Ten points from Gryffindor.'
'He just made that rule up,' Hermione said.
'Yeah, you'd know,' muttered Chloe.
'Chloe,' Harry warned. 'Wonder what's wrong with his leg?'
'Maybe it got bitten by that big three headed dog,' Chloe suggested.
'That'd be nice, and I hope it's really hurting him,' said Ron bitterly.
The Gryffindor common room was very noisy that evening. Harry, Ron and Hermione sat together next to a window. Hermione was checking Harry and Ron's Charms homework for them. She would never let them copy, but they had been known to distract her and then copy it.
Chloe was restless. Whilst attempting to do her Potions homework she kept thinking of Snape with Quidditch Through The Ages, 'probably doesn't even know the rules,' she muttered.
'What was that?' Lavender asked.
'Hmm? Did I just say something out loud?' Chloe asked.
'Yeah you said 'probably doesn't even know the rules',' Parvati said. 'Who doesn't know what rules?'
'Oh, Snape doesn't know the rules to Quidditch,' her two friends looked at each other and then at Chloe. 'He took Quidditch Through The Ages.'
'Then go get it back,' Lavender said. 'It's out in your name so if it's overdue you have to pay the fee, tell him that.'
'It's out in Harry's name, but it was my idea to take it outside so Mum would make me pay anyway,' Chloe said.
She stood outside the staffroom door and knocked before opening the door to see Snape lifting up his robes to Filch.
'Oh gross!' Chloe yelled out laughing before tearing off with Snape yelling down the corridor at her before running into Harry. 'Ha! You know I just saw the funniest thing!'
'That's great but I'm going to get my book off Snape,' Harry replied.
'Ok, but be warned he's –' Harry was already knocking on the door, so Chloe shrugged it off leaving Harry to deal with whatever horror he faced.
Harry knocked on the door. There was no answer. He knocked again. Nothing. Perhaps Snape had left the book in there? It was worth a try. He pushed the door ajar and peered inside – and a horrible scene met his eyes.
But thankfully it was not what Chloe thought she saw. Snape and Filch were inside, alone. Snape was holding his robes above his knees. One of his legs was bloody and mangled. Filch was handing Snape bandages.
'Blasted thing,' Snape was saying. 'How are you supposed to keep you eyes on all three heads at once?'
Chloe had been right before when she mentioned the dog. Harry tried to shut the door quietly, but –
Snape's face was twisted with fury as he dropped his robes quickly to hide his leg. Harry gulped.
'I just wondered if I could have my book back.'
'GET OUT! OUT! THOSE BLOODY POTTER KIDS!'
Harry left, before Snape could take any more points from Gryffindor. He sprinted back upstairs.
'… and he had his robes up to here,' Chloe said indicating with her hands just above her knees.
'What? And the two of them were alone?' a second year girl asked.
'Yep,' Chloe said her eyes sparkling as the room collapsed in laughter.
'And he didn't give you detention or anything?' Dean asked.
Chloe shook her head grinning.
'Brilliant, absolutely brilliant, we've been waiting for this kind of blackmail for years
now,' Fred Weasley said.
'She thrives on attention doesn't she?' Harry said joining Ron and Hermione.
'Did you get the book, or were Snape and Filch too… you know…' Ron said raising his eyebrows.
'Ron!' Hermione exclaimed.
'What? Don't listen to Chloe, she exaggerates,' Harry said before telling them what he had seen. 'And you know what that means? He tried to get past the three-headed dog at Halloween! That's where he was going when we saw him – he's after whatever it's guarding! And it'd bet my broomstick he let the troll in, to make a diversion!'
'Told you the dog bit him,' Chloe said as she walked past smug.
Hermione's eyes were wide.
'No – he wouldn't,' she said. 'I know he's not very nice, but he wouldn't try and steal something Dumbledore was keeping safe.'
'Honestly, Hermione, you think that all teachers are saints or something,' Ron snapped. 'I'm with Harry. I wouldn't put anything past Snape. But what's he after? What's the dog hiding?'
'Guess what!' Chloe said sitting down with Lavender and Parvati.
'What?' the asked simultaneously.
'Snape and Filch aren't an item,' she said. 'Snape's been savaged by the giant three-headed dog!'
To everyone around them Chloe sounded like an attention-seeking liar, but she had already filled Parvati and Lavender in about the three-headed dog incident.
'What? How do you know?' Lavender asked.
'Well, Harry had the same idea as me; you know twin telepathy, copying my ideas all
the time, about going and getting his book back, he got there moments after me and heard Snape say 'How are you supposed to keep your eyes on all three heads at once?' to Filch. And then he saw Snape's leg, which was all bloody and mangled. Which explains why he's been limping lately.'
'But why would he want to get past the dog?' Parvati asked.
'Because I remember Hermione saying that it was standing on a trap door,' Chloe answered wiggling her eyebrows.
'So he's trying to get whatever it's guarding,' Lavender said.
'Wonder what it is,' Parvati said.
'Yeah, must be valuable,' Chloe said grinning again.
'Quidditch!' was the first thing Chloe said when she woke up earlier than usual.
Parvati groaned and rolled over whilst Lavender continued sleeping. 'Please don't say it's before nine.'
'Er, then I won't say anything. Aren't you coming to watch the Quidditch?' Chloe looked around excitedly. 'Lavender?'
She went over to her friend's bed, 'LAVENDER!'
'Chloe, why are you yelling?' Hermione asked sleepily. 'And why are you awake? I'm not even up yet.'
'Quidditch, duh!' Chloe said. 'Dibs first in shower! Lavender! Do you want to know what Quidditch is or not?'
'Chloe calm down, you've seen a million games of Quidditch before,' Parvati said getting irritated. 'I'll wake up Lavender and you have a shower.'
Hermione rolled her eyes, 'that one gets worked up easily.'
'DO NOT!' Chloe's voice came from in the bathroom as Parvati nodded in agreement.
The morning was bright and chilly down in the Great Hall, and Harry Potter was beginning to regret getting out of bed and joining the Quidditch team. But the lure of the hot food and delicious smells won him over. Even if he felt sick to his stomach.
'You've got to eat some breakfast.'
'I don't want anything.'
'Just a bit of toast,' wheedled Hermione.
'I'm not hungry.'
He looked at his watch, in an hour he'd be walking onto the pitch.
'Harry, you need your strength,' said Seamus. 'Seekers are always the ones who get nobbled by the other team.'
'Thanks Seamus,' Harry replied sarcastically.
'He's right Harry, if you don't eat anything you'll be pummelled out there, and
imagine having to say my son was beaten by a Slytherin, I'd have to kick you out Harry,' James Potter said.
'Dad!' Chloe squealed running into the hall to hug him.
'Hey Chlo-bo,' James said hugging her. Chloe redden at her childhood nickname.
'Guess it's not Chlo-bo anymore huh?'
'Miss Potter, no running inside,' McGonagall called out. 'James Potter, I heard you were coming to watch the match today.'
'Hey Minerva, how are the kids treating you?'
'They're coming along fine, although I can say, Chloe there is just like you,' McGonagall said smiling.
'That's a compliment,' James whispered in his daughter's ear.
'Well, I'll see you at the game, as you are a parent, you will sit in the teachers' box,'
McGonagall said before leaving.
'Right… how'd the game go?' Chloe asked as soon as McGonagall was out of earshot.
'Against the Wasps? We thrashed them,' James replied.
'Nice work,' Chloe said.
'Thanks,' James said. 'So Harry, are you going to eat?'
James looked down to see all the kids at the table looking at him.
'Think they recognise you Dad?' Chloe asked.
'I thought you were lying when you said your dad was coming,' Mandy said running over from the Ravenclaw table.
'So did I,' Chloe replied grinning, Mandy nudged her. 'Oh right, Dad, this is Mandy Brocklehurst, she's one of my friends from Ravenclaw, and she loves the Tornadoes.'
'Do you? Well you're welcome to stay with us during the holidays and come to the games,' James said smiling. 'I've got to go Harry, Chloe, I should say hi to Dumbledore now. Harry calm down, you're versing Slytherin, can't let their taunts get to your head, it's just a tactic.'
And James wandered off to the teachers' table.
'Well I guess it's settled then, I'm staying at yours during the holidays,' Mandy said grinning and heading back to the Ravenclaw table. 'I'll see you at the game.'
Before long everyone was out at the Quidditch field ready to watch the first game of the season. Chloe could see James sitting next to Professor Dumbledore as she took her place with the rest of the Gryffindor first years up in the top row. As a surprise for Harry, they had painted a large banner on one of the sheets that Scabbers had ruined. It had Potter for President, in large writing, and Dean, who was good at drawing, drew a large Gryffindor lion underneath. Then Hermione performed a tricky charm that made the paint flash different colours.
Down in the change rooms, Harry and the rest of the team where changing into their scarlet Quidditch robes.
Wood cleared his throat for silence.
'OK, men,' he said.
'And women,' Chaser, Angelina Johnson said.
'And women,' Wood agreed. 'This is it.'
'The big one,' Fred Weasley said.
'The one we've all been waiting for,' said George.
'We know Oliver's speech by heart,' Fred told Harry, 'we were on the team last year.'
'Shut up you two,' said Wood. 'This is the best team Gryffindor's had in years. We're going to win. I know it.'
He glared at them as if to say 'or else.'
'Right. It's time. Good luck, all of you.'
Harry followed Fred and George out of the changing room, hoped to hell that his knees wouldn't give away, and walked out onto the pitch surrounded by loud cheers.
Madame Hooch was refereeing. She stood in the middle of the pitch waiting for the two teams to assemble around her.
'Now, I want a nice fair game, all of you,' she said, once they were all gathered around her. Harry noticed that she seemed to be speaking particularly to the Slytherin Captain, Marcus Flint, a sixth year. Harry thought Flint looked like he had some troll blood in him. Out of the corner of his eye he saw the fluttering banner high above, flashing Potter for President over the crowd. His heart skipped and he felt braver when he looked towards the teachers' box to his dad sitting next to Professor Dumbledore in a seemingly lively conversation.
'Mount your brooms, please.'
Harry clambered on his Nimbus Two Thousand.
Madam Hooch gave a long blast on her silver whistle.
Fifteen brooms rose up, high, high into the air. They were off.
'And the Quaffle is taken immediately by Angelina Johnson of Gryffindor – what and excellent Chaser that girl is, and rather attractive, too –'
The Weasley twins' friend, Lee Jordan, was doing the commentary for the match, closely watched by Professor McGonagall.
'And she's really belting along up there, a neat pass to Alicia Spinnet, a good find of Oliver Wood's, last year only a reserve – back to Johnson and – no, Slytherin have taken to Quaffle, Slytherin Captain, Marcus Flint gains the Quaffle and off he goes – Flint flying like an eagle up there – he's going to sc- no, stopped by an excellent move by Gryffindor Keeper Wood and Gryffindor take the Quaffle – that's Chaser Katie Bell of Gryffindor there, nice dive around Flint, off up the field and – OUCH – that must have hurt, hit in the back of the head by a Bludger – Quaffle taken by Slytherin – that's Adrian Pucey speeding off towards the goal posts, but he's blocked by a second Bludger – sent his way by Fred or George Weasley, I can't tell which – nice play by the Gryffindor Beater, anyway, and Johnson back in possession of the Quaffle, a clear field ahead and off she goes – she's really flying – dodges a speeding Bludger – the goal posts are ahead – come on, now, Angelina – Keeper Bletchley dives – misses – GRYFFINDOR SCORE!'
The cheers of the Gryffindor's filed the cold air, with howls and moans from the Slytherins.
'Budge up there, move along.'
Ron and Hermione squeezed together, whilst Chloe moved further along next to Lavender so she wouldn't have to touch Ron, so Hagrid could have more space to join them.
'Bin watchin' from me hut,' said Hagrid, patting a large pair of binoculars round his neck. 'But it isn't the same as bein' in the crowd. No sign of the Snitch yet, eh?'
'Nope,' said Ron. 'Harry hasn't had much to do yet.'
'Kept outta trouble, though, that's somethin',' said Hagrid, raising his binoculars and peering skywards at the speck that was Harry.
Way up above them, Harry was gliding over the game, squinting about for some sign of the Snitch. It was one of the tactics Wood had suggested.
'Keep out of the way until you catch sight of the Snitch,' Wood had said, and Harry had seen more than enough Quidditch games in his life time to know that this was the smartest and most obvious thing to do.
Once a bludger had flown in his direction, but Fred Weasley knocked it out of the way.
'Alright there Harry?' he called out, as he aimed the bludger at Marcus Flint's head.
'Never better,' he grinned back.
'Slytherin in possession,' Lee was saying, 'Chaser Pucey ducks two Bludgers, two Weasleys and Chaser Bell and speeds towards the – wait a moment – was that the Snitch?'
As the crowd rustled in anticipation, Adrian Pucey dropped the Quaffle, distracted by the gold fluttering around his ear. Harry saw it, and dived downwards excitedly towards the streak of gold. The Slytherin Seeker Terence Higgs had seen it as well, and neck and neck they hurtled after the Snitch. All the Chasers stopped to watch as they hung in mid air.
Harry was faster than Higgs – he could make out the little gold ball – he put on more speed –
WHAM! A roar of rage echoed from the Gryffindors below – Marcus Flint had purposely blocked Harry, and his broom span off course, with Harry holding on for dear life and the Slytherins howling in laughter.
'FOUL!' screamed the Gryffindors and James.
Madam Hooch spoke angrily to Flint and then ordered a free shot at the Gryffindor goal posts. But in all the confusion the Snitch had disappeared again.
Down in the stands Dean Thomas was yelling, 'Send him off, ref! Red card!'
'This isn't football, Dean,' Ron reminded him. 'You can't send people off in Quidditch – and what's a red card?'
'It doesn't matter what it is!' Chloe cried. 'They should just bloody well send him off!'
Hagrid was on Dean's side as well.
'They oughta change the rules; Flint coulda knocked Harry outta the air.'
Lee Jordan, as a Gryffindor, was finding it hard to express his own opinion as commentator.
'So – after that obvious and disgusting bit of cheating –'
'Jordan!' growled Professor McGonagall. Behind her James chortled.
'I mean, after that open and revolting foul –'
'Jordan, I'm warning you!'
'All right, all right. Flint nearly kills the Gryffindor Seeker, which could happen to anyone, I'm sure, so a penalty to Gryffindor, taken by Spinnet, who puts it away neatly, and we continue play, Gryffindor still leading twenty to zero, and still in possession.'
When Harry dodged his next Bludger things started getting strange. His broom gave a sudden and frightening jerk. For a split second he thought he was going to fall. He gripped his broom tighter, supposing the Bludger must have knocked it.
It happened again. It was as if the broom was trying to knock him off. But since when did brooms knock their riders off? He tried to turn back to the Gryffindor goal posts, hoping to get Wood to call time out – then he realised his broom was completely out of control.
In the stands, Lavender Brown was the first to notice the strange occurrences.
'What's Harry doing?' she asked as Harry zigzagged backwards across the sky.
All the Gryffindor first years looked up.
'What the hell does he think he's doing?' Chloe mused loudly.
'Slytherin in possession – Flint with the Quaffle – passes Spinnet – passes Bell – hit hard in the face with a Bludger, hope it broke his nose – only joking Professor – Slytherin score – oh no…'
There were large boos from the Gryffindor end of the pitch.
'Dunno what he thinks he's doing,' Hagrid mumbled. He stared through his binoculars. 'If I didn't know better, I'd say he'd lost control of his broom… but he can't have…'
Suddenly, people all over were pointing up at Harry. His broom rolled over and over, with him only just holding on. Then the whole crowd gasped. Harry's broom had given a wild jerk and Harry swung off it. Chloe screamed and grabbed hold of Lavender and Dean who were either side of her. Harry was now dangling beneath it, holding on with only one hand.
Did something happen when Flint blocked him?' Seamus whispered.
'He hexed him! Flint hexed Harry!' Chloe yelled.
'Can't have,' Hagrid said, his voice shaking. 'Can't nothing interfere with a broomstick except powerful Dark magic – no kid could have done that to a Nimbus Two Thousand.'
At these words, Hermione seized Hagrid's binoculars, but instead of looking at Harry, she frantically scanned the crowd.
'What are you doing?' moaned Ron, grey faced.
'I knew it,' Hermione gasped. 'Snape – look.'
Ron grabbed the binoculars. Snape was in the middle of the stands opposite them. He had his eyes fixed on Harry and was muttering non-stop under his breath.
'Pass them,' Chloe said grabbing them off Ron without waiting for a reply. She looked through them, and there was Snape. She looked three rows above him, and there was James sitting next to Dumbledore, looking like he was going to be sick, running his fingers through his hair, with Dumbledore looking like he was reassuring him.
'He's doing something – jinxing the broom,' said Hermione.
'What should we do?' Chloe asked, passing the binoculars back to Ron.
'Leave it to me.'
Before Ron or Chloe could say another word, Hermione had disappeared. Ron turned the binoculars on Harry. His broom was vibrating so hard; it was almost impossible for him to hang on much longer. Everyone watched terrified, as the Weasleys flew up to try and pull Harry safely onto one of their brooms, but it was no good – every time they got near him, the broom would jump higher still. They dropped lower and circled beneath him, obviously hoping to catch him if he fell. Marcus Flint seized the Quaffle and scored five times with no one watching.
'Come on Hermione,' Ron muttered desperately. He looked at Chloe who had her face hidden behind her hands.
Hermione had fought her way across to the stand where Snape stood and was now racing long the row behind him; she didn't even stop to say sorry as she knocked Professor Quirrell head first into the row in front. Reaching Snape, she crouched down, pulled out her wand and whispered a few, well-chosen words. Bright blue flames shot out of her and onto the hem of Snape's robes.
It took about thirty seconds until Snape realised he was on fire. A sudden yelp told her she had done her job. Scooping the fire off him into a little jar in her pocket she scrambled back along the row – Snape would never know what had happened.
She was worried for a second that it might not have done the job, but she looked up at Harry and it was enough. He was suddenly able to climb back on to his broom.
'Chloe, Neville, you can look!' Ron said. Neville had been sobbing in Hagrid's jacket for the last five minutes, and Chloe was still hiding behind her hands.
Harry was speeding towards the ground when the crowd saw him clap his hand to his mouth – he hit the pitch on all fours.
'He's going to be sick!' Chloe cried out.
Harry coughed – and something gold fell into his hand.
'I've got the Snitch!' Harry shouted, waving it above his head, and the game ended in complete confusion.
Through Hagrid's binoculars, Chloe could see James, who still looked a little pale, was now roaring with laughter at his son, swallowing the Snitch.
'He didn't catch it, he nearly swallowed it,' Flint was still howling twenty minutes later, but it made no difference – Harry hadn't broken any rules and Lee Jordan was still happily shouting the result – Gryffindor had won one-hundred and seventy points to sixty. Harry had heard none of this, though. He was being made cup of strong tea back in Hagrid's hut, with Ron, Hermione and Chloe.
'I thought you nearly died!' Chloe snivelled.
'It was Snape,' Ron was explaining. 'We saw him. He was cursing your broomstick, muttering, he wouldn't take his eyes off you.'
'Rubbish,' said Hagrid, who hadn't heard a word of what was going on next to him in the stands. 'Why would Snape want to do a thing like that?'
'Because he hates us, and our dad,' Chloe said.
Harry, Ron and Hermione looked at each other just as someone knocked on the door. Hermione got up and let James Potter in.
'Harry! Dumbledore said you might be here,' James said rushing over to his son. 'God, that game was a mess, what happened with your broom?'
'Snape was hexing it,' said Chloe.
'Snape?' James replied puzzled. 'Why would Snape do that? Especially right in front of Dumbledore, McGonagall and myself.'
'Because I found out something about him,' Harry said softly. 'He tried to get past the three-headed dog at Hallowe'en. It bit him. We think he was trying to steal whatever it's guarding.'
Hagrid dropped the teapot and James chuckled.
'How do you know about Fluffy?' he said.
'Fluffy?' all four students said.
'That thing has a name?' Chloe asked.
'Yeah – he's mine – bought him off a Greek chappie I met in the pub last year – I leant him to Dumbledore to guard the –'
James caught Hagrid's eye.
'Yes?' said Harry eagerly.
'That's enough,' James said seriously, before lightening up. 'So why don't you tell us about that spectacular catch of the Snitch, Harry?'
'But Snape's trying to steal it!' said Harry ignoring his father.
'Rubbish,' said Hagrid.
'Harry, Snape may not like you, but he's a Hogwarts teacher, he wouldn't attempt to kill a student,' James said.
'Then why did he trust try to kill Harry?' Hermione asked.
The afternoon's events had certainly changed her opinion about Snape.
'I know a jinx when I see one; I've read all about them! You've got to keep eye contact, and Snape wasn't blinking at all, I saw him!'
James shook his head, 'I'm sure there's a perfectly good explanation for it.'
'Yeah,' Hagrid agreed. 'I don't know why Harry's broom acted like that, but Snape wouldn' try an' kill a student! Now listen to me, all four of yeh – yer meddlin' in things that don' concern yeh. It's dangerous. You forget that dog, an you forget what it's guardin', that's between Professor Dumbledore an' Nicholas Flamel –'
'Aha!' Chloe cried out. James tried not to laugh.
'So there's someone called Nicholas Flamel involved, is there?'
Hagrid looked furious with himself and James let out a small laugh before covering it with a cough.
LEAVE ME LOVE!
I'm off to watch NSW slaughter QLD in State of Origin.