"All students please come to the Dining Hall with me in twenty minutes to submit your name into the Goblet. Thank You." Professor Ainsley's voice cut through my sleep. I roused myself, and dressed quickly. I grabbed a comb and ran it through my hair several times, however, not enough to really make it look brushed. I didn't really care though. I ripped the corner off a piece of parchment, and scribbled down my name, then wrote "Hogwarts" underneath it, then I exited the room.
Marcie was waiting outside the carriage, clutching her own slip of paper. Kaylie joined us in a few minutes. We waited for Travis. The twenty minutes were almost up by the time he came out, hair ruffled, yawning. We made our way into the Dining Hall together. Professor Ainsley was at the door, waiting for us. Several other students were there already.
Five minutes later, we were all in the Dining Hall, dropping our names into the blue fire. I approached the goblet, and put my name in. As I did it, I felt a tingling in my fingers. It was like the goblet was getting to know me, learning my fondest memories and deepest secrets; my talents and flaws; my worst fears and strongest loves.
I was in the kitchen of my house. A gentle breeze flowed through the open window. Both my parents were there, and Alison was sitting on the floor drawing dragons on a piece of parchment. The smell of freshly baked goodies filled the air. That was when the owl flew in. It was a big brown owl, and tied to it's leg was a parchment envelope. From my position at table, I could just make out the scarlet Hogwarts seal holding the envelope closed, and the black Crest above it.
"It's here! It's here! The letter's here!" I exclaimed excitedly, running to the window, and untying the letter from the owl's leg. Wasting no time, I ripped the letter open, and looked at the contents. With every word I read, the smile stretched across my face grew wider and wider. My mother took the letter from me when I was finished and read slowly through the contents.
"We'll go to Diagon Alley this weekend," She said.
"And why don't we get you an owl too?" My father added.
My mother hugged me, and my father stood at my shoulder, looking proud and happy.
"Can I come?" Alison asked, looking up from her picture, and grinning toothily at me. I nodded, and she jumped up to hug me too.
The memory faded to black.
My family was gathered around the hospital bed in St. Mungo's. My father was lying on the bed. My mum had her hands wrapped tightly over his. I could tell that my dad was barely awake, because every so often he would groan or look up into up into our mum's eyes. The healers at St. Mungo's didn't know what was wrong. All we could do was wait, and watch as our father died right before our eyes.
Every second that passed, his breathing slowed, and soon, the warmth left his eyes. Alison's ten-year-old eyes brimmed with tears, and she collapsed onto our father's chest, sobbing. I just stood there, shock keeping my body stiff, and glued down. Slowly, as if I was thawing like a Popsicle, the truth seeped into my mind. The tears dripped down my cheeks, into my open mouth, leaving a salty tang on my tongue.
No one knew my father was dead; not even Kaylie.
I was sitting on the stone steps in one of the many turrets of the castle, out of the way of the students below, studying vigorously for exams. I couldn't take it. The stress was beginning to affect my sleeping patterns, and I was taking a well-deserved break. I had placed my head in my hands and was pressing the heels of my palms into my closed eyelids. That was why I hadn't seen her come silently up the staircase, and I didn't notice her until she sat next to me and said, "Are you okay Trevor?" I brought my head up at Kaylie's voice, and just her face, staring in concern into my eyes was enough to make my heart skip a beat, and my stomach flutter pleasantly. I loved it when I was around her, and the fact that we were best friends was the perfect excuse.
"O.W.L.s are stressing me out," I admitted to her. She smiled softly and sympathetically, but didn't say anything. Instead she placed her hands on my shoulder and rested her head there. The gentle pressure comforted me, and I draped my arm around her shoulders. "I can't wait until all of this is over," I told her, sighing, and starting to tap my fingers on the step I was sitting on. Listening to the dim drumming sound in an endless rhythmic beat for some reason caused my heart to quicken it's pace, it didn't really help when Kaylie removed her hand from my shoulder, and took mine in hers absentmindedly, playing with the different ways my fingers fit with hers. We sat like this for several minutes in silence before Kaylie finally spoke again.
"We should go to the next Hogsmeade weekend together."
"Don't we already?"
"I mean just us. Without Travis and Marcie."
"Yeah, okay." I replied casually, barely concealing my emotions; the feeling of triumph, and a deep happiness that I could feel in every one of the nerves in my body. Kaylie looked up at me slowly. I turned my head until I was facing her. She looked down in her lap. Her left hand was still on my shoulder, and she was fingering the sleeve of my shirt. In the silence I could tell she wanted to say something else, but didn't know how. I knew what was going to happen seconds before it did. Kaylie's hand had shifted so that it was pressed to my collarbone. I brought the unoccupied hand around her waist to her back, drawing her closer to me. With every second that passed, we inched closer until finally, our lips met, fitting together as perfectly as two pieces of a puzzle.
Her lips were soft and delicate, and warm. I could practically feel the heat that was rising in my cheeks as the moments passed. I was oblivious to everything around me but Kaylie; all sound was deadened, all feel of the dusty air gone, all smell of the wood and rain that was everywhere had dispersed like an early morning fog. All I could smell was the sweet sent of vanilla that was always there when she was around me. I didn't want it to end, I didn't want the moment to disappear, to wake up and find that it had been only a dream. But I knew it had to. When Kaylie finally drew away from me, I expected to feel disappointment at no longer holding her in my arms. I expected to open my eyes any minute, alone in my four poster bed, the last of my euphoria slipping away, and dread setting in like cement in my stomach at the prospect of O.W.L.s just around the corner. But all I could feel was happiness. The only thing that happened was Kaylie taking my hand again in hers and resting her head gently on my shoulder. I smiled.
I blinked several times, the smell of vanilla still hanging in the air, and then stepped back to allow Kaylie to drop her name in. I had not experienced this the last time I had entered my name in, but maybe that was just because I had been so much younger. However, if the Goblet had done the same thing to Kaylie, she hid it well.
When the rest of the Hogwarts students had submitted their names, we assembled ourselves at the table in the Dining hall. The wood nymphs were back, this time bringing plates full of french breakfast dishes. Croissants, little pastries that looked like snowmen, some filled with chocolate, and an assortment of others. They were all delicious, but the atmosphere in the room felt somewhat stiff. An unfamiliar room filled with unfamiliar people. The Beauxbatons students were quiet as they ate, and the Durmstrang students conversed with only each other in low voices. I tried several times to bring up conversation with my friends, but the silence magnified my words, and the talk died as soon as it left my mouth.
Finally, Professer Ainsley stood up and ushered us out of the hall, and explained that we had an hour to ourselves before lessons, and we could do with the time what we wanted.
"That was an awkward breakfast," Marcie muttered with a small smile as we stood outside the Dining Hall.
"Yeah, no kidding," Kaylie agreed.
'What should we do in the next hour?" I asked. Kaylie opened her mouth to say something, but then Marcie held up her hand.
"Wait," she said. "Don't tell me... Homework."
"Actually, I was going to say maybe we could explore the castle," Kaylie retorted hotly, "But if you want to do homework..."
"Explore the castle it is!" Travis said, eyes slightly wide.
"Are we allowed to do that?" I asked. "Last time, the Durmstrang staff got pretty upset when they found us, 'lurking' in the corridors."
"Nobody's told us we can't," Travis said. "I say go for it." I was satisfied, and so, it seemed, were the girls, because they consented to go into the first room we looked into. It was similar to the Trophy Room at Hogwarts, only bigger, and the trophies looked cleaner. A beam of sunlight fell through the large windows in the wall. There were trophies with students names, the dates they attended Beauxbatons, there were many Triwizard Tournament trophies, including the one from last year, and a Special Achievement award that caught my eye.
"Hey guys, check this out," I said. My friends looked over my shoulder at the award in my hand. Engraved on the shiny gold surface it said: Nicholas Flamel, 1338-1346.
"What did he receive a Special Achievement for?' Kaylie said. There was a touch of awe in her voice.
"I don't know, it doesn't say," I told her. "Probably because he was a genius. He was probably the best student.
Several minutes looking, and we had exhausted our curiosity of the trophies. I pushed the door open, and looked out briefy before stepping back into the halls. Travis and Marcie followed me, but then there was a loud clattering sound, and I looked back into the room. Kaylie was sprawled on the floor. She appeared to have tripped over something, because metal prizes littered the floor. I raised my eyebrows, trying as hard as I could to stifle my laughter, then I stepped back into the room to help her up. It took us a few minutes, but Kaylie and I straighten up the awards again trying to get them all back in their original, tidy places.
When we when back outside again, Travis and Marcie were gone.
"Thanks for ditching us guys," I muttered under my breath, looking around the corner. They had vanished.
"Where do you think they went?" Kaylie asked, her brow was furrowed in a look that seemed to say, "I can't believe they left without us." I shrugged, and took her hand.
"Well," I said. "Since they ditched us... Why don't we go somewhere alone." Kaylie turned to me and smiled.
"I like that idea," she said. I lead her out of the gigantic double doors, to the gardens, surrounded by short, intricately designed silver fences. I pulled her forward after me, and we weaved through the flowers and fountains until there was no one in sight. We couldn't hear any talking, not even from windows in the towers soaring over us. I sat down on a particularly big fountain. The base was inlaid with gold, and there was a golden unicorn on the top, rearing on it's hind legs. It glinted in the sunlight. The water spilled from it's long horn that pointed straight up at the clear, blue sky. I cascaded down the three tiers before falling into the bottom, and creating a soft gurgling sound.
Kaylie sat down beside me, still gripping my hand, and smiling widely. It made my smile grow, until I started to laugh. She joins in, and leaned against me. I took my arm and wrapped it around her, squeezing her shoulders gently, before kissing her on the cheek. She rested her head on my shoulder, and we sat there smiling contently. I studdind the design on the fence intently, following the complex swirling pattern as I waited enjoying Kaylie's sent, and the warmth of her body against mine. Her hand was cold, but I didn't mind, it just made me want to envelope her hands in mine, as I tried to warm them up.
The sun was creeping higher in the sky when we finally heard giggling. I looked up to find Marcie and Travis leaning out the window, staring at us. I only started to wonder how long they had been standing there when Marcie said, "Come on you love birds, we have to get to our lessons. Kaylie took her head off my shoulder, shaking her head slightly, before getting up, and dragging me with her. We ran back to the carriages, to grab our things. I went left down the hall and she went right.
In my room, I crammed as much of my homework and papers into my black bag, not bothering with neatness, and began rummaging around in my trunk for quills and ink. I grabbed my wand, which I had almost left on the desk, and jogged back out the door again, where Kaylie was already waiting, her books tidy, and her hair tied up in a long ponytail behind her head. I gave her one last kiss on the cheek, before we departed for the class.
The Gryffindors' class was in a small empty room. It was full of chairs and desks, like and exam. Our tutor was at the front, wand in hand. Her name was written on the otherwise perfectly clean blackboard behind her: Madam Bordelon.
In her strong, French accent she told us all to sit down. "Zis class will be seemilar to Study 'all. Pleez begin your 'omework, and I will come around answering questions." Kaylie raised her hand.
"Call, ma'am. What about practical spells and assignments."
"If you must perform spells, I have equipment at ze front of ze room."
I looked down at my paper. The question was for Herbology, it read: How long does it take for a mandrake to mature? That one was easy. I answered it and went on to the next one. The questions got progressively harder. I had to score my brain to remember. Finally, I finished the paper and moved onto the next one, for Advanced Potions, the hardest subject. Again, the questions started easy, and then got harder. I asked Kaylie if she knew the fourth step in a hair-growth potion, and if she could remember how many times you had to stir and aging potion after putting it on high heat, but had to resort to Madam Bordelon on the last question.
"Ze must be picked at midnight because zey need time to open all the way up before zey can be used." I nodded and she turned away, then I copied her answer word for word on the paper. As I continued, I kept looking at the time. we were supposed to get a break for lunch in four hours. But the minutes ticked by so slowly I was beginning to doubt that the clock even worked.
At last Madam Bourdelon called for our attention. "Okay students, it is time for your lunch break. I expect you all back in an hour to continue your studying. I dropped my quill on the desk, and put my head in my hands, pressing my palms into my eyelids. The gentle pressure was soothing, but it only lasted for a minute. I got up and stuffed all my things back into my bag.
"Ugh." Travis. "I don't know if I can stand a whole year of that. I snorted. No kidding.
"I think I might loose it and shred every single piece of work I've got by next week."
"Wouldn't it be nice though, if we could finish it all early and have the whole rest of the year to do anything we wanted?" Kaylie said. She was thinking of the time we had spent just hours ago in the gardens.
"We'll have plenty if time to do whatever we want," I told, gracefully sweeping up her hand and spinning her in a circle. She smiled, giggling slightly, and we continued down the sunlit corridors. For lunch, a table was set up along one wall already filled with a range of snacks and meals. It was a short lunch. More talk filled the room then had that morning, thought the Durmstang students where still whispering to each other, mysteriously cloaked in their dark red uniforms.
I talked to Marcie, Kaylie and Travis, I listened in on some of the conversations of the other Hogwarts students. Allison and Micheal talked together, I could just see across the table. Their hands were less then a centimeter apart. Michael kept looking down at her hand as if wondering if he should take it in his. But the break went by all to quickly. I soon found myself back in the classroom with Madam Bordelon
"I expect no dilly-dallying. Everyone is to get back to work immediately." We all settled down, and I had to force myself to pull out a slightly bent and half-finished Transfiguration essay.
Dinner had been a very stiff affair. You could feel the anticipation in the room; nobody really ate much, but kept looking over at the staffs' tables, and the goblet filled with blue flames, and not a single word was uttered as Professor Delpierre stood and started to speak, "Bonsoir. La Coupe sera bientôt rendre sa décision." I couldn't understand him, but I knew basically what was being said. The Goblet was ready.
In an instant, the flames turned red. A piece of smoking parchment soared into the air and fell into Professor Delpierre's outstreached hand.
"The Beauxbatons champion," He said, "est Adelaide Mullins. Se il vous plaît procéder à la salle l'extérieur." A girl sitting several tables away from us stood from her seat. She couldn't have been older then Allison, about 14. Her chocolate colored hair, tied in a long braid swung over her shoulder as she turned and walked past the chairs and out the doors of the Dining Hall, her nose stuck proudly in the air. Thunderous applause echoing after her.
"Le Champion Durmstrang est Elena Dimitrov," Delpierre continued when the next piece of parchment came shooting out of the scarlet flames. A girl with thick, glossy black hair stood. She was at least sixteen, if not older. She followed Adelaide Mullins out the doors.
As the fire in the goblet changed color for a final time, Delpierre called out, "Enfin, mais pas moins certainatly, le champion de Poudlard... Trevor Brown." I sat for a moment in shock as I processed what he had said. The French was probably "The Hogwarts Champion is..." Or something of that sort, but the last two words... he had said my name. Slowly a grin spread across my face as I stood up. My fellow Hogwarts students clapped loudly, the other two schools gave a smattering of polite applause. Travis got up and thumped me on the back; Marcie hugged me; Kaylie embraced me tightly, and kissed the side of my head, then she let go, grinning widely, and allowed me to walk past the other tables through the hall, out the doors. An open door beckoned invitingly to my left. I could see several very comfortable looking chairs, two were occupied by the other champions.
"You are the Hogwarts Champion?" The Durmstrang girl, Elena Dimitrov, said in a thick accent. I nodded. "Nice to meet you." She stuck out her hand and I shook it.
"I'm Trevor Brown," I said.
"Nice to meet you Trevor, I am Elena." She smiled warmly at me, which I gladly returned. I looked over at the French girl. She too gave me a smile, but it was more of a cold and sarcastic smile, almost as if she was challenging me.
Then the three headmasters entered the room.
In English, Delpierre said, "Well done. You are our three champions."
"Excellent! We now have our three Champions!" Please comment!