Riddle (H.P)

Cassiopeia Riddle has lived in an orphanage all her life; no knowledge of her family or who she really is. Nothing, that is, until she's finally found by Hogwarts and she can finally go and become the person she's supposed to be, discovering not just herself, but her family in the process. Will she find what she's looking for? Will she be left disappointed, angry and, most importantly, in danger?

(The Harry Potter series is property of J.K. Rowling. I do not own any scenes or characters from the books or the films. Cassiopeia Riddle is my character, however, and some scenes may differ from the books. There may also be some modern references.)

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9. Chapter 9

"Cassy! Wake up, it's almost time," Hermione says, as she shakes the girl's shoulders gently. 
"I'm awake, I'm awake," Cassiopeia groans, sitting up tiredly.
"Come on, hurry up!"
Cassy slips out of her bunk and drags a brush through her hair before tying it up into a mess knot on the back of her head, strands of hair falling and framing her face in little loops. She pulls on her trainers and applies a last lipstick touch up before ducking out of the tent. She joins the group as they start moving, buying some Omnioculars from a salesperson before they set off towards the stand only a short distance away. They follow the lantern lit pavements, the sounds of thousands of people all around them. The excitement is contagious, the entire group hosting large grins. The sky was already growing slightly darker, an orange hue spreading across the horizon. Cassy realized she must've been asleep for a couple of hours at least. They come out on the other side of the treeline and the immense size of the stadium hits Cassiopeia at full force. She and Harry sport matching awe-struck grins.
"Seats a hundred thousand," says Mr Weasley, catching the looks on their faces. "A Ministry task force of five hundred have been working on it all year. Muggle-Repelling Charms on every inch of it. Every time Muggles have got anywhere near here all year, they've suddenly remembered urgent appointments and had to dash away again... Bless them," he adds. His fond tone of voice catches Cassiopeia by surprise. She hadn't heard such a tone being used in regards to Muggles before.
"Yeah," Ron whispers. "Dad has a bit of a soft spot for Muggles, Muggle inventions, Muggle everything. He's really curious. Most people reckon he's mad, but some people just think he's 'cute'." 
"It's sweet," Cassy smiles, happy that someone appreciates the way Muggles work. "Hey, Mr Weasley, how much do you know about Muggle electricity?"

Cassy runs a few paces to catch up to him and they engage in a scientifically based conversation all the way towards the large gold walls surrounding the pitch, and all the way to the Top Box. 
"Prime seats!" exclaims the Ministry witch who checks their tickets at the entrance. "Top Box! Straight upstairs, Arthur, and as high as you can go."
They begin climbing the stairs, which were carpeted in a rich purple. The crowd lumbering up the stairs has thinned considerably by the time they get up to the Top Box, a small box at the highest point in the stadium. The box is exactly half way between the two sets of golden hoops, giving the group an incredible view of everything. There were enough chairs for about twenty people, set out into two rows. As the group files into the front row, the sheer number of wizards and witches that had turned out is realized by Cassy. The majority of the seat were filled- in fact, she couldn't see a large amount of seats that were empty. The grass below looked soft and lush beneath the crowds, and the large golden hoops were shining in the gold-infused light that everything was doused in. Almost at eye-level, a huge board flashing advertisements for everything, from Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans to Mrs Skower's All-Purpose Magical Mess Remover. Harry tore his eyes from the board and looks around, but Cassy is still gazing in amazement at the crowds of Irish and Bulgarian colours. People who weren't Bulgarian or Irish, such as the English crowds, had picked a side and were still cheering profusely. 
Harry had started a conversation with a small house elf, who seemed terrified. They seemed to have a common friend but Cassy wasn't listening. She was scanning the crowd from above, watching the people interact over their common interest: Quidditch. Soon, the box started to fill up around them, important looking wizards and witches, some of who greeted Arthur. Percy was, more often than not, jumping out of his seat to greet people, but he just ended up looking a little bit stupid, in Cassy's opinion. When the Minister of Magic came into the box, Percy bowed so low that his glasses slid right off of his face. They'd shattered on impact, and Percy had, with much embarrassment, repaired them with a tap of his wand- keeping himself planted firmly in his seat afterwards. Cassy often noticed him throwing jealous looks at Harry, whom Cornelius Fudge had greeted like an old friend with a fatherly handshake. 
Fudge started to introduce Harry to the people around him before his eyes landed on me, talking with Hermione.
"And Miss Granger, how lovely to see you again. Who is your friend?" he asks. Cassy turns to face him in shock at being addressed and he goes ashen and pale. 
"Oh God, here we go again," she mutters to Hermione, forcing a smile onto her face as she turns her body too. "Hi Cassiopeia Riddle."
Her name seems to grab some people's attention, and upon recognizing the face, some people scramble to look away, trying not to draw attention to themselves, others sitting up, blatantly obvious compared to the ones slipping down in their seats. Fudge looks me over, muttering something about 'the damn genetics'. 
"It's good to finally meet you, Miss Riddle," he says, loudly enough for everyone to hear. "You've recently joined the Wizarding World, correct?"
"Yes, sir. I've lived with Muggles my entire life," she nods. 
Fudge nods at this. "Well, we hope you do some good here, Albus Dumbledore has convinced me to expect... incredible things from you."
"Oh yes! That sounds about right," Hermione says. "I'm going to be catching her up on the three years of work she missed, and we started this afternoon with a Shield Charm and a Disarming Charm and she's already doing incredibly. She has a lot of power stored in her somewhere, and I have no doubts that she'll use them for good."
"It's good to hear you have faith in her, Miss Granger," Fudge smiles. The rest of the Top Box seems more at ease, although some people are still whispering her name- wondering, speculating, spinning conspiracies. 
A few minutes after their conversation, once Cassy had sat down between Hermione and a Bulgarian official (Cassy thought it might be their magical Prime Minister), a familiar group of white-blonde haired people approach the box. Draco looks up and meets Cassy's eye, giving her a small smile. She returns it, noticing his mother's eyes on her too. 
"Ah, here's Lucius!" Fudge calls as they enter. He stands to shake hands.
"Ah, Fudge," he says, shaking his hand. "How are you? I don't think you've met my wife, Narcissa? Or our son, Draco?"
Fudge shakes Draco's hand and bows slightly to Mrs Malfoy. 
"And allow my to introduce you to Mr-" Fudge stumbles over his name. "Well, he's the Bulgarian Minister for Magic, and he can't understand a word I'm saying anyway, so never. And let's see who else- you know Arthur Weasley, I daresay?"
Cassiopeia could feel the tension coming off of the two. She was all too aware of his dislike, considering the reaction she got when she'd come back from the woods with Draco; but she never would've guessed. 
"Good Lord, Arthur," Mr Malfoy says softly. "What did you have to sell to get seats in the Top Box? Surely your house wouldn't have fetched this much?"
Fudge didn't seem to be listening too closely, as he didn't say anything in response to this comment. Cassy's eyes narrow at Mr Malfoy. This was not someone she wanted to be around too much. 
"Lucius has just given a very generous contribution to St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries, Arthur. He's here as my guest."
Arthur lets out a strained pleasantry in response to this. Mr Malfoy's eyes drift to Hermione, who turns a slight shade pinker. She still holds his gaze with a determined look. Suddenly, Cassiopeia understood. Hermione is Muggle-Born, and Draco had told her that his parents were Pure Blood Supremacists. She put the pieces together and a hot wave of loathing and protectiveness rushed over her. She glares at Lucius as he sneers down at Hermione. He spots me and his obnoxious sneer disappears. He nods at me, 
"Miss Riddle, we meet again."
"So we do," she replies, a cold tone in her voice. "But last time, you weren't sneering down at people."
Lucius doesn't show any emotion as he moves to his seat. Draco glares at Ron, Hermione and Harry and spares me a kind, softened look. 
Fudge ignores my comment as they take their seats. 
"Slimey gits," mutters Ron, turning back to the pitch. Cassiopeia doesn't want to agree, but Lucius had raised a hatred she hadn't thought possible around such an excited atmosphere. 
Ludo Bagman comes charging into the box next moment, removing all thoughts of the Malfoys. 
"Everyone ready?" he says, his face glowing with a boyish excitement. "Minister, ready to go?"
Fudge nods comfortably. 
Ludo whips out his wand and points it at his throat. 'Sonorus!' he says, and suddenly his voice is roaring over the noise of the stadium. "Ladies and gentlemen... welcome! Welcome to the final of the four-hundred-and-twenty-second Quidditch World Cup!"
The crowd gave an almighty reaction to this- clapping and screaming. Thousands of flags waved, and the flags were emitting uncoordinated national anthems. The huge blackboard wipes its last message of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans and shows BULGARIA: ZERO, IRELAND: ZERO. 
"And now, without further ado, allow me to introduce... the Bulgarian Team Mascots!"
The right-hand side of the block, which was almost a solid block of scarlet, let out almighty roars. 
"I wonder what they've brought," Mr Weasley says, leaning forwards in his seat. "Aaah! Veela!"
"What are Veela?" Cassiopeia asks, but before she can get the whole question out, there were about a hundred of them are gliding out onto the pitch. Their hair wasn't that different from Draco's, Cassiopeia notices. Their skin almost shines, but Cassiopeia finds herself easily distracted. The boys are sitting, their mouths hanging slightly ajar. When the music starts playing though, Cassiopeia swears she could've seen their thoughts flying out of their ears as the Veela start to dance. The boys looked like they had lost all capability too think. Cassy thinks that the boys are more interesting than the Veela dancing across the pitch. Suddenly, Harry is stood up and Ron is also stood, looking somewhat like he was about to jump. The Veela finally stopped dancing, and angry yells filled the stadium. 
Ron was absent-mindedly shredding shamrocks from his hat as Harry was blinking confusedly. Mr Weasley pulls it out of his hands.
"You'll be wanting that once Ireland have had their say." 
"Huh?" Ron says, looking like an utter moron with his mouth hanging open as the Veela line up on the side of the pitch. 
Hermione pulls Harry back to her seat as Cassiopeia can't help but laugh at their incredibly confused facial expressions. 
"And now," roared Ludo Bagman, "kindly put your wands in the air... for the Irish National Team Mascots!"
Next, what seemed like a huge green and gold comet comes shooting out of nowhere. This large ball splits off into two before their eyes after doing a lap of the pitch. The two balls shoot off towards the two goalposts and then a rainbow shoots up, connecting the two balls of light. As if at a firework display, the crowd 'ooohed' and 'ahhhed' in all the right places. The two balls of light merged again, forming a big green shamrock over the stadium. It soared over people's heads, something looking strangely like gold rain falls from it. As the shamrock reaches them, the gold rain turns out to be gold coins. 
"Leprechauns!" Mr Weasley calls. 
Ron stuffs some gold into Harry's hand, telling him it was for the Omnioculars. The shamrock dissolved, the little men with red beards and with green and gold lanterns float down to their side of the pitch.
"And now, ladies and gentlemen, kindly welcome- the Bulgarian National Quidditch Team!" 
He launches into a reel off of their names, each name being recipient to huge applause. "Dimitrov! Ivanova! Zograf! Levski! Vulchanoc! Volkov! And... Krum!"
"That's him, that's him!" Ron yells, following Krum with him Omnioculars. As each name was called, a flash of scarlet robes followed. Focusing her ownOmnioculars, Cassy catches a sight of Krum. Thin and dark with an over-curved nose and thick, dark eyebrows- he looked older than eighteen. 
"And now, please greet- the Irish National Quidditch Team! Presenting- Connolly! Ryan! Troy! Mullet! Moran! Quigley! And... Lynch!"
Green blurs sped onto the pitch. In the slowed replay, the word Firebolt could be seen printed in gold lettering up the side of their brooms. 
"And here, all the way from Egypt, our referee, acclaimed Chairwizard of the International Association of Quidditch, Hassan Mostafa!"
As small, slightly skinny wizard strides onto the pitch. He's completely bald apart from his mustache which was, in Cassiopeia's opinion, quite a feat of facial hair. He carried a large crate under one arm and a broomstick under the other. He mounted his broomstick and kicked the crate open; releasing four balls into the air. Cassiopeia found herself proud after she realized she could name all the balls: two black Bludgers, one scarlet Quaffle and a tiny winged Golden Snitch. Mostafa blew his whistles and shot off into the air after the balls. 
"They're OFF!" shouted Bagman. "And it's Mullet! Troy! Moran! Dimitrov! Back to Mullet! Troy! Levski! Moran!"
Cassiopeia could barely keep up with her Omnioculars, but she didn't dare do a replay for fear of missing something big. The players fly up the pitch passing to and fro, almost quicker than Bagman could say their names. 
"TROY SCORES!" Bagman roars. 
"What?" Harry yelled wildly, as though confused. "But Levski's got the Quaffle"
"Harry, if you're not going to watch at normal speed, you're going to miss things!" shouted Hermione who was also grinning as she did a celebratory dance, watching Troy do a lap around the pitch. The leprechauns were up in the air again, forming a great glittering shamrock. The Veela all looked ridiculously sulky on the other side of the pitch. 
Normal play resumes and Cassiopeia can't help but comment on the Irish Chasers' superb performance. 
"They're a really good team!" she calls to Hermione. Hermione can only nod in agreement, clinging onto every movement she can from the teams. Within ten minutes, they'd increased their lead to thirty-zero, and the green clad supporters were loving it.
The match continued getting faster, and with that it became more brutal. The two Bulgarian Beaters were whacking Bludgers as hard as possible at the Irish Chasers who were flying up and down the pitch. Twice they were forced to scatter due to a Bludger. Finally, Ivanova managed to break through the Irish defenses, dodging the Keeper and scoring Bulgaria's first goal: thirty-ten. 
The Veela started dancing and Mr Weasley warned the boys to put their fingers in their ears. After a moment, the Veela had stopped dancing and Bulgaria were back in possession. 
"Dimitrov! Levski! Dimitov! Ivanova- oh I say!" roared Bagman. 
One hundred thousand witches and wizards gasp as Krum and Lynch go zooming towards the ground, it almost looked as though they were free-falling. Cassiopeia rushed to see where the Snitch might be, but she couldn't catch sight of it. 
"They're going to crash!" Hermione screamed and for one horrible second, Cassiopeia felt sick with the thought that they might. 
At the very last second, Krum pulled out of the steep dive and steadied himself again. Lynch, however was not so lucky. He plummeted to the ground, landing with a sickening crunch.
"Oh my God!" Cassiopeia cries as she rushes forward to see if he would be getting up.
"Fool!" moans Mr Weasley. "Krum was feinting."
"What's feinting?" Cassy asks.
"It's when they pretend to dive to try to get the other Seeker to follow and then crash," Hermione explains. Cassy nods with understanding, still riddled with worry for the other Seeker. 
"It's a time out as trained medics hurry onto the pitch to examine Aiden Lynch!" Bagman cries. 
"He'll be OK," Charlie reassures Ginny and Cassy as they almost hang over the bars of the box to see. Krum returned to the air to continue looking for the Snitch unrestricted. Lynch finally got to his feet to huge roars from the Irish supporters. He mounts his Firebolt and kicks off back into the air. Ireland seemed to have gotten a new spring in their step at Lynch's remount. 
Mostafa blew his whistle and the Chasers once again kick into action. 
After fifteen more intense minutes, Ireland has pulled even further ahead with ten more goals. The scores were now one hundred and thirty to Bulgaria's ten. The game was getting increasingly dirtier. 
Mullet shot towards the goals again, clutching the Quaffle. The Bulgarian Keeper flies out to meet her. A scream of rage from the Irish and a long, shrill whistle from the Ref informed Cassiopeia that it had been a foul. 
"And Mostafa takes the Bulgarian Keeper to task for cobbing- an excessive use of elbows!" Bagman informs the spectators. "And- yes, it's a penalty to Ireland!"
At the sight of the foul, the leprechauns had lept to the sky in rage, were now directing a portayal of 'HA HA HA' towards the Veela, who jumped to their feet and started dancing angrily. The boys stuffed their fingers in their ears, but the girls weren't bothered. 
Hermione and Cassiopeia were quite clearly enjoying this display, but it got made even funnier when the referee landed in front of the Veela- acting very strangely indeed, obviously impacted by the dancing. He was flexing his muscles and smoothing his mustache. 
"Now, we can't have that!" said Ludo Bagman, though he sounded about as amused as Cassiopeia looked. "Somebody slap the referee!"
Cassiopeia was laughing- this wasn't something you'd see at a football game!
She turned to see Ludo's face, but instead caught Draco's eye, since he was watching her with a happy look on his face. His face tinged pink slightly as he grinned at her. His fingers weren't in his ears, but he didn't seem to be paying attention to the Veela. She grinned back before turning her attention to the game again. 
A mediwizard was tearing across the pitch towards the Ref, fingers stuffed in his own ears and he kicked him in the shins. He immediately came to his senses and, looking highly embarrassed, was now shouting at the Veela who had ceased their dancing. 
"And unless I'm much mistaken, Mostafa is actually attempting to send the send off the Bulgarian Team Mascots! Now there's something we haven't seen before... oh, this could turn nasty..."
And Bagman was right. The two Bulgarian Beaters were on the ground on either side of the referee, trying to argue with him. They were gesturing to the leprechauns, who had now formulated 'HEE HEE HEE' in the air towards the Veela. The referee jabbed a finger towards the air, signalling for them to get flying again, and when they refused, another penalty was awarded. 
"Two penalties for Ireland!" shouted Bagman whilst the Bulgarian crowd howled with anger. Cassiopeia was amazed. This was so different from Muggle sport. 
"And Volkov and Vulchanov had better get back on those brooms... yes... there they go... and Troy takes the Quaffle..."

Play was now reaching a level of ferocity beyond anything that could actually be inside the rules. The Beaters on both sides were acting without mercy; sending Bludgers flying at the other team's players and the Bulgarians seemed not to care whether or not their bats hit Bludger or flesh. Moran claims possession of the Quaffle and Dimitrov shot straight at her, nearly knocking her off her broom. 
The Irish supporters called for a foul, as echoed by Ludo Bagman. "Dimitrov skins Moran - deliberately flying to collide there - and it's got to be another penalty - yes, there's the whistle!"
The leprechauns rose into the air once again, this time forming a very rude hand gesture towards the Veela on the other side of the pitch. The Veela suddenly lost control, launching themselves across the pitch and beginning to throw fire at the leprechauns by the handful. The Veela, Cassiopeia noticed through theOmnioculars, didn't quite retain the same beauty they had before. Their faces had elongated, morphing into a cruel beaked faces and long, scaly wings burst from their shoulders. 
"And that, boys," yells Mr Weasley over the commotion, "is why you should never go for looks alone!"
Ministry wizards were flooding onto the field in an attempt the separate the two teams mascots, although with little success. 
Whilst this battle was raging on, the one in the sky hadn't halted. The Quaffle was still exchanging hands at the speed of lightning. 
"Leviski - Dimitrov - Moran - Troy- Mullet - Ivanova - Moran again - Moran -MORAN SCORES!"
The cheering from the Irish supporters was barely heard over the enraged shrieks of the Veela, the blasts being issued from the Ministry wizard's wands and the angered roars of the Bulgarians. The game still continued; Leviski with the Quaffle, the Dimitrov.
The Irish beater swung at a passing Bludger and smashed it towards Krum- who couldn't quite duck quickly enough. It hit him in the face. His nose looked broken and blood was everywhere. The ref was distracted, a Veela had thrown a handful of fire at him and his broomtail had caught alight. Ron mumbled about Krum not being able to play like that, but Harry cut him off.
"LOOK AT LYNCH!" he yells suddenly, and Cassiopeia does. 
"He's seen it!" Cassiopeia shouts, "LYNCH HAS SEEN THE SNITCH!"
"It can't be a Wronski Feint!" Harry yells. The excitement builds in the stadium- reaching a peak as Lynch streaks towards the ground. Krum reached his tail, flecks of blood streaking behind him. The pair drew level...
Hermione shrieks. "They're going to crash!"
Again, she was only half right. For the second time that night, Lynch hit the floor, soon being trampled by the angry Veela. 
"Where's the Snitch?" bellowed Charlie.
"He's got it! Look, Krum's got the Snitch!" Cassiopeia yells, pointing at the Seeker, who had the little winged ball clutched in his hand. His scarlet robes were shining with blood, but he still had a look of delight on his face at catching the Snitch. The board flashed BULGARIA: ONE HUNDRED AND SIXTY, IRELAND: ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY. 
"IRELAND WIN!" announces Bagman, who seems to be as taken aback as the Irish. "KRUM GETS THE SNITCH, BUT IRELAND WIN!"
The noise from the green-clad supporters grew and grew until it was a mess of screams of delight and cheering for the players. Krum lands, mediwizards immediately swarming him.
Ron and Harry start talking about why Krum caught the Snitch when they were one hundred and sixty point ahead- discussing how he knew they wouldn't catch up. The Irish team was celebrating with their leprechauns, the Bulgarian team looking slightly rejected. The Irish national anthem were blaring out from all side, Irish flags waving from all sides. The Veela returned to their usual selves, looking broke spirited and disappointed whilst the leprechauns showered the crowds in gold. 
"Vell, ve fought bravely," says a saddened voice from behind the group. They look around, spotting the Bulgarian Minister for Magic. 
"You can speak English!" says Fudge hotly. "And you've been letting me mime for you all day!"
"Vell, it vos very funny," he shrugs, promoting a snigger from Cassiopeia, which in turn earns her a sharp glare from Fudge. 
"The Irish team perform a lap of honor flanked by their mascots as the Quidditch World Cup itself is brought into the box."
Suddenly, the box is illuminated in a dazzling white light so that people all around the stands can see. Two panting wizards enter the box, carrying the cup. They handed it to Fudge, who still seemed heated over the fact that he wasted his time miming. 
"Let's have a large hand for the gallant losers, Bulgaria!"
Up the stairs, and into the box come the seven defeated Bulgarian players. The crowd applauds appreciatively, as do the people in the box. One by one, their names were announced, they shook hands with their Minister, then Fudge. Krum looked a total mess. He was sporting two blossoming black eyes and his face was still bloody. Cassy couldn't help but notice that he wasn't quite as graceful on the ground- his shoulders were slightly round and he had a slight duck-footedness about him. When his name was announced however, the stadium still gave an earsplitting roar.

Then came the Irish team after they'd finished their winning laps. Lynch was having to be supported by two of his teammates since the second crash seemed to have dazed him quite a bit; his eyes seemed oddly unfocused. He still grinned happily as Troy and Quigley lifted the cup into the air, the crowd below thundered and clapped. Cassiopeia could barely feel her hands, she was clapping so hard. When the Irish team left the box to perform another lap of honor on their brooms (Lynch doubling up with Connolley, still with a bemused smile on his face), Bagan pointed his wand at his throat and muttered 'Quietus'. He spoke hoarsely, and Fred and George were suddenly scampering up the chairs and standing in front of Bagman with their hands outstretched. At my side, Hermione laughed at Bagman's disgruntled face. "Fred and George made a bet about the outcome, Bagman owes them some money now," she smiles.

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