Chapter Nineteen: Year's Conclusion
Harry was sitting in the Slytherin Quidditch Locker Room deep in thought. The Season had come down to the Finals of the Quidditch Cup, Hufflepuff against Slytherin. Unless Hufflepuff pulled out a miracle, Slytherin would be capturing the Quidditch Cup this year. Of course, this did not appease Marcus Flint, not at all. Flint was standing, looking up and down at his fellow teammates in disgust before giving one of his legendary pep talks.
"Losing is unacceptable, so win by any means necessary," growled Flint at the teammates before turning and walking out towards the field.
Harry picked up his Nimbus 2000 racing broom, preparing for the Quidditch Game and walking out. Harry felt good about his chances of winning, as it would take a miracle for Hufflepuff to beat Slytherin on this day due to the great season Slytherin had thanks to Flint's insane training program.
"Welcome to the Quidditch House Cup Final," thundered Lee Jordan over the magical megaphone, monitored closely by Professor McGonagall. "The Slytherins facing off against Hufflepuff but I must say for with one exception, the Slytherin Team is nothing but a team of no good, cheating…."
"Jordan!" yelled McGonagall. "I'm warning you, if you can't do your commentary on the match without your biases…"
"Uh, right Professor," said Lee although Harry had a funny feeling he would still push it. "The Slytherin Team's star seeker Harry Potter, the only person on the team with actual skills who didn't get on the team because they were a big hulking go..."
"Jordan!" yelled Professor McGonagall. "How the Slytherin Team chooses their players is not subjected for examination on your commentary!"
"Okay, Professor," said Lee as Madam Hooch came out to the field.
"I want a nice clean game," said Hooch, who was as usual eying Flint who just smirked at her. Hooch let the Quidditch Balls up into the air and the game began.
Harry circled around the pitch like an eagle, looking for the snitch. The Hufflepuff Seeker, a fourth year who Flint told Harry was named Cedric Diggory kept tailing Harry closely and was interfering with Harry's ability to look for the Snitch by dodging in front of him a couple of times. Slytherin got into the lead when a goal was scored, bumping them into the lead of ten-zero. Of course, two fouls happened moments later, which gave Hufflepuff a pair of penalty shots. The first penalty shot was blocked but the second one was put past the keeper.
"Ten to Ten, tied up," called Lee through the magical microphone. "The Slytherins appear to be attempting to change tactics at the moment, but the quaffle is grabbed and shot through the hoop. Twenty to Ten putting Hufflepuff in the lead."
Hufflepuff beefed the score up Forty-to-Ten by scoring two more goals and Flint started looking not too pleased. Harry figured he better get the Snitch before Flint has a meltdown mid game. Slytherin Chaser Warrington put the Quaffle in for a goal, bumping the score up Forty-to-Twenty with Hufflepuff still in the lead. A glint of gold was out of the corner of Harry's eye. The snitch was hovering by the Slytherin Team goalpost. Harry shot down at the snitch with expert speed and agility, he would not be denied.
"Harry Potter has seen the Snitch!" cried Lee Jordan. "And boy is he tearing towards it like a bat out of hell..."
"JORDAN, LANGUAGE!" screamed Professor McGonagall angrily.
Diggory was on Harry's tail but a bludger was hit towards Harry, which caused him to swerve to the side and narrowly avoid being hit with the bludger. The snitch vanished and Harry cursed under his breath.
Another goal from Hufflepuff caused them to get Fifty-to-Twenty. Flint was yelling at his fellow chasers to step it up before turning his attention to Harry, eyes narrowed angrily.
"Potter, you better find that Snitch soon or you'll be sorry," ordered Flint angrily.
Madam Hooch gave another penalty shot to Hufflepuff but Slytherin Keeper Bletchley blocked the shot. A few more moments of play, Hufflepuff scored another goal, which brought the score up Sixty-to-Twenty for Hufflepuff. Harry circled around but Diggory saw what Harry was looking for first. Diggory was racing towards the Snitch but Harry put all of his power into shooting forward, attempting to keep up with Diggory but the Hufflepuff Beater struck a bludger at Harry. Harry's eyes went wide but it was too late to duck, the bludger struck him point blank in the face. Harry spiraled to the ground, already passed out before he crashed down to Earth.
Darkness filled every bit of Harry's being. He was waking up and it took a few moments to recollect his thoughts, to find out that he was in the hospital wing. Harry could feel his right cheek and lip all swollen from the bludger hitting it. Daphne, Hermione, and Theodore were watching from the doorway.
"Look he's awake," said Daphne in a low voice, not trying to disturb any of the other patients.
"The game, what happened, who won?" demanded Harry attempting to clear the cobwebs out of his head.
"Harry, forget about the stupid Quidditch Game," said Hermione in indignation. "You could have died out there!"
"Okay, fine, how long was I out?" asked Harry sheepishly.
"Two days," said Daphne. "Madam Pomfrey said you were lucky not to crack your skull but still, you got a minor concussion, but she managed to heal most of the damage."
"Yes, Mr. Potter, you were extremely fortunate," said Madam Pomfrey, the Hogwarts Healer walking in the room. "You will have to relax for a few weeks. No intense physical activities for quite a while and I would strongly suggest you don't get hit in the head again during that time. You have to stay here until tomorrow morning and then I will release you when I feel you have healed well enough to function normally."
Madam Pomfrey paused before turning to Harry's friends.
"As for you three, you have ten more minutes to visit but then I must ask you to leave so Mr. Potter can rest," said Madam Pomfrey in a stern tone of voice before turning to leave.
"So, did we win," said Harry again which caused Hermione to put her head in her hands and shake her head in frustration before muttering something that sounded like "boys".
"Actually, we did. Diggory was fouled before he could catch the Snitch from when he was racing for it when you were waking up. After you left, the Slytherin Team really stepped it up to new levels of viciousness and it was a close fought game but even with Diggory's capture of the Snitch, we won by Thirty points," said Theodore. "Of course, now Flint will not stop bragging about the victory he acquired despite the fact the Seeker was knocked out of action."
"Charming," said Harry sarcastically. "Flint lies, cheats, and steals his way to the Quidditch House Cup but if it wasn't for me risking life and limb the first two matches, he wouldn't even be so far in the lead that it was a forgone conclusion that he could win with a shorthanded team."
"Afraid so, Harry," said Daphne. "Funny the way that works some times."
"Yes, about as funny as a heart attack," said Harry sarcastically.
"This concussion business seems to have put you in a rather cynical mood Harry," said Theodore.
Harry opened his mouth but Hermione gave him a glare, which caused him to rethink what he was going to say.
"Honestly, Harry, don't even respond to that," said Hermione. "It is obvious you would come back with some sarcastic retort for yet again."
"Let's talk about something other than my cynical sarcastic tongue then if it makes you uneasy Hermione," said Harry in a faux cheerful tone of voice.
The four friends talked lightly for a few minutes until Madam Pomfrey shooed Daphne, Theodore, and Hermione out of the Hospital Wing talking about Harry needed his rest. Harry rolled his eyes, he felt fine, if a bit light headed after all.
"I saw that Mr. Potter," snapped Madam Pomfrey.
Harry rested in that Hospital Wing what seemed like hours.
"I'm bored," said Harry in a bored tone of voice. "Can I please be let out right now? Honestly, I feel fine; it's not I'm going to get hit in the head."
"No, Mr. Potter," said Madam Pomfrey sternly. "Not until I feel you are well enough to be let out. You do have a visitor however."
Pomfrey stepped back and the massive form of Hagrid walked into the hospital wing, clutching a leather bound photo album of some sort.
"It's all my ruddy fault, Harry. The fact that monster nearly killed ya. I'm sorry I couldn' talk to ya sooner," said Hagrid. "I told 'im how ta get past Fluffy. I should not be allowed to exist."
"Hagrid, calm down," said Harry. "This is Lord Voldemort we are talking about. The most powerful Dark Lord in a century, the man who has killed hundred during his first reign of terror. He is shrewd and extremely crafty, he would have found out how to get past Fluffy anyway."
Hagrid winced at Voldemort's name but other than that he calmed down.
"Ah perhaps you are righ' Harry," said Hagrid. "Can't let meself go to pieces over something like this. Anyway, I brought ya a present."
Hagrid held out the book he was carrying. Wondering what it was, Harry opened the first page which had an auburn haired women with bright green eyes, Harry's eyes and a man who looked as if he could be a older version of Harry was in there, holding an infant with a small tuft of short black hair. Harry looked at it. It was an infant Harry being held by his parents.
"I was out all day yesterday visitin' all your parent's old school friends, asking if they could give up pictures, seeing as if you did not have any," said Hagrid beaming.
"Thank you Hagrid," said Harry in a low voice, flipping through the book and looking at all the pictures. Harry finally had the one element, which had missed his entire life, pictures of his parents and their friends.
The next day, Harry was released from the Hospital Wing, although Madam Pomfrey released Harry extremely reluctantly. Harry left the Hospital Wing, ready to meet with his friends, as this was the last day before they were to leave for the Holidays. Harry was lost in his thoughts, reflecting upon the year and how it was nearly as big of a success as some of the ninjitsu skills he mastered. About how he made a slew of loyal friends but a nagging suspicion remained with Harry. He still was not any closer to finding out why exactly Lord Voldemort killed him then he was nine months ago.
"Ah, Mr. Potter, just the student I wanted to see," said a quiet voice, bringing Harry out of his thoughts.
Harry turned around, seeing Snape was the one speaking to him.
"I wish to have a quick chat with you in my office before you depart for the year," said Snape as Harry had a perplexed look on his face before it turned to worry. "Do not fret Mr. Potter, you are not in any trouble, not at this moment at least. Follow me."
Without a word, Snape set off towards his office and Harry followed, wondering what exactly Snape wanted a word with him about. Snape muttered a password Harry could not quite here as the two reached the office. Snape walked in and Harry followed Snape through the doorway to his desk. Lying on Snape's desk was a silvery looking cloak.
"Now, Mr. Potter, I have a feeling you know more about Dumbledore than you are letting on and you may have a theory that he is withholding information from you," said Snape.
Harry opened up his mouth, but Snape held up his hand to stop Harry.
"Your facial expressions tell the story well enough, Mr. Potter," said Snape. "He has also been withholding certain family heirlooms from you. Your father was misguided enough to leave the cloak you see on my desk in Dumbledore's possession to give to you later on. Now I imagine if you were a golden boy Gryffindor, Dumbledore would give you what is before me without a word but since you are a Slytherin, Dumbledore decided to defy your father's orders. I managed to remove it from Dumbledore's office at great risk and while your father and I did not, for lack of a better term, see eye to eye, I daresay he would want you to have this. It is an Invisibility Cloak which has been passed down in the Potter family your generations. Use it well but do not let me catch you using for mindless rule breaking if you value your life."
Snape pushed the cloak out towards Harry, who took it, examining it. Harry felt anger towards Dumbledore, withholding something that should have been his but he knew he could not tip his hand to the old man until he could find out all he could about Dumbledore.
"Thank you, sir" said Harry graciously to Snape.
Snape did not respond, except for a brief nod of his head.
"You better get going, Mr. Potter," said Snape. "The students will be leaving any moment."
Before Harry could possibly know it, Harry and his friends were on the Hogwarts Express, leaving for the Summer Holidays. Harry reflected the difference a year made. Last year going to Hogwarts, he was hanging upside down from the ceiling by himself reading a book and now he was with his three closest friends in a compartment of the Hogwarts Express.
"So the first year ended, I must say it was interesting," said Theodore. "I wonder if next year will be as action packed at this one is with the threat of You-Know-Who hanging over our head."
Harry opened his mouth but Hermione cut him off.
"We know Harry, you have a funny feeling you have not seen the last of You-Know-Who," said Hermione quickly cutting off Harry.
"No actually I was going save how I craved pepperoni and marshmallows in a deep dish crust," said Harry with a dreamy expression on his face.
"I think that concussion Harry got has knocked him even more loopy than usual," said Daphne shaking her head.
"No, Harry's definitely back to normal," said Hermione. "After all, I would be worried if he was not talking about his unique tastes in Pizza toppings."
"So, everyone is going to keep in touch for the summer, right?" asked Daphne.
Harry just remembered his gift for his friends. He had nearly forgotten about it. He reached into his pocket, pulling out three of the two-way mirrors he bought at Knockturn Alley back during his first trip in the Wizarding World.
"Here, you three," said Harry passing the mirrors out among his three friends. "A simple way to keep in touch for the summer holidays, because as I am going to be on another Continent, the chance for owls being intercepted is extremely high. All you have to do is say my name at the mirror and I will be able to answer."
"Excellent," said Daphne happily. "This is a great way for all of us to keep in touch easily without running some poor owl ragged going from one continent to the next."
The Hogwarts Express stopped at King's Cross Station. The end of one year, Harry thought as he grabbed his trunk.
"So long, everyone," said Harry, waving to his three friends while pulling out his Portus-Amulet from underneath his robes. "I will be in touch soon enough, I suspect."
As his friends left the train, Harry tapped his wand to his Portus-Amulet thinking of his destination. Harry felt the jerking sensation as he was pulled to the warehouse above his home. Harry dragged his trunk towards the elevator before pressing causing it to open and coming down to the lair.
Breathlessly, Harry opened the door where his family was waiting for him.
"Harry, do come in," said Splinter kindly. "I sense you have much to tell about the events of the last few days."
"Yeah, bro, what's the story?" demanded Raph. "How exactly did you save that Philosopher's Stone thing from Voldemort?"
"Yeah what's the four-one-one on that situation?" prompted Mikey curiously.
Harry looked at his brothers and Master Splinter, debating on what exactly to tell them.
"Guys, I really do not know where to start," said Harry, frowning in concentration.
"The beginning tends to be a good place, Harry," said Don.
"Yeah even if it is a long story, it will be a long night, so let's hear it," chimed in Leo.
"Yeah, plus the cable's out," said Mikey before Raph smacked him across the back of the head. "Ow, Raph, that hurt."
"I know," said Raph with a smirk.
Harry sat down with his family and began telling the tale of the last few days, right from when he suspected Voldemort was after the Stone until when he discovered it was a fake duplicate. Harry felt rather good to get the frustrations he had been feeling the past few days off of his chest. Two more months and Harry would be returning to Hogwarts, but right now he would be enjoying the summer with his family. Plus, Harry felt after the events of the last twelve months, his life could not get much weirder. Right?