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The next few weeks went by rather quietly. Ron was allowed to stay as the Weasley’s were going to visit their Aunt Gertrude, whom Ron exceptionally disliked. He would continually thank Harry or James for allowing him to stay. Hermione left the next day after the World Cup. Harry was sad to see her go, but had other things on his mind. The Death Eaters, tortured Muggle-Borns and Voldemort often invaded his dreams. It wasn’t uncommon for Harry to wake in a cold sweat, and find Ron or his father or Sirius telling him he had had a nightmare. His father was becoming increasingly worried and spent most of his time in his study. The study had a special enchantment over it so only someone with Potter blood could go through the doors. However, he had closed and sealed the doors so Harry was as barred as anyone else. Sirius recovered fine from his wounds, but still received a good amount of attention afterwards. Lupin said that the effects of the curse he had received may cause some unusual behavior. Ron wasn’t pleased about this.

“What about me, eh? I’ve got a bloody dislocated ankle! Sirius hasn’t got a scratch on him!” he complained. To this James turned on Ron and flicked his wand rather violently. Ron’s ankle made a popping noise. He collapsed clutching his ankle and moaning. James had forced it back into place.

“I wanted to let it heal properly, but you wouldn’t stop whining, so…” he smirked as he turned back to helping Lupin check Sirius for signs of the curse. Ron left about a week later, walking properly, but also careful about his words around James.

Before Harry knew it, September 1st had arrived. His father and Lupin escorted him to Platform 9 ¾. He met Ron and Hermione there, as well as Draco Malfoy. Malfoy approached Harry to make some kind of nasty comment, when James said rather loudly “Oh where is that dog?” Draco stopped suddenly, and left. Harry gave his dad a hug, and then went to join Lupin on the train. Saying good-bye to Harry was one of the hardest things James had ever had to do. He gripped his son hard on the shoulders before releasing him. He teared up a little, but held himself together as Harry disappeared on the train. Harry didn’t like saying goodbye to his father either. He had spent the summer with him, but it wasn’t enough. James and Harry had 12 years to make up for. One summer wouldn’t do it. Harry would have to return to his home for Christmas, and maybe Easter, something he had never done before. He waved at his father as clouds of smoke blocked his view. Lupin went to a teacher compartment, and he found a place to sit with Ron and Hermione.

“Looking forward to the year ahead?” Ron asked, making conversation.

“I just hope it's quiet” Harry replied.

“Well it will be for me this year, as I am taking fewer classes, but for you, Harry, I doubt that it would be. Trouble usually follows you”. Hermione said.

“Well, I am hoping that trouble will stay away form me this year. I want to have a nice normal year”.

“Wouldn't count on that mate, there's always something bad happening at Hogwarts, and I overheard my dad, telling my mum, that there was going to be a Triwizard tournament, where they winner gets a thousand galleons”

“A what?” Harry asked.

“A Triwizard tournament, is a tournament that was popular years ago, there are three tournaments and three champions. There are also three different wizarding schools that are involved, it was designed to bring the wizarding world together, but the tasks started getting more and more dangerous, and eventually a student was killed. So they stopped doing it and the wizarding community grew apart. I'm actually surprised that Dumbledore has allowed such a dangerous event”. Hermione explained.

“You never know Harry, your name could come out of the cup” Ron joked.

“Don’t you dare say that” Hermione screeched. “Promise me that you will not get your name in that cup” she said to Harry. She looked on the verge of tears, and was literally pleading with him.

“OK, I won't” Harry said. She gave him a small smile and went back to the book she was reading.

“She's mental” Ron mouthed at Harry. Harry just gave a small smile, and stared out the window, for the remainder of the journey.

**************

The next few weeks at school were quite normal. Harry was pleased to be back at school. Hogwarts was the first place he had truly called home. All his classes were particularly fun. Hagrid had brought nifflers, treasure finding creatures, as a project for Care of Magical Creatures. The Summoning Charm was the focus of Charms. Professor Flitwick, the little teacher, squeaked out new instructions and tips each day on the spell. Harry’s was decent, but the object he was summoning had a tendency to overshoot his hand, and hit him on the forehead. Ron noted that he would have another scar by the time he had mastered it, to which Harry threatened to break both his ankles. Professor Dumbledore mentioned (just as Ron had predicted) at the start-of-year feast that Hogwarts would be home to the Triwizard Tournament, a Tournament in which young wizards displayed their skills in a series of contests. Two other schools arrived on Halloween. Beauxbatons, a French school for girls only, and Durmstrang, a Nordic school that focused on the Dark Arts. A champion from each school would be selected from the Goblet of Fire. The champion had to be of age though, a decision made by the Ministry officials running the tournament that caused an uproar among younger students. Harry hadn’t planned on entering anyway. He wanted to try and go another year without being killed, and he had made a promise to Hermione. Near the middle of November, the selection of the champions would take place. Cedric Diggory, a handsome Hufflepuff seventh year was chosen as the Hogwarts champion. Harry had no objection. Cedric was a fantastic Quidditch player, skills that would be invaluable to his succeeding. Fluer Delacour, a gorgeous girl with shining blonde hair was the Beauxbatons champion. Ever since she had entered the castle, Ron swore she was his soul mate. Viktor Krum was the Durmstrang Champion. Harry had been shocked to learn he was still in school after seeing him at the World Cup. He would give Hermione some affectionate looks, something Harry wasn’t fond of. With the three champions chosen, the feast would begin. As soon has Harry had filled his plate, it happened.

“Harry Potter” Harry looked up. The Goblet of Fire had called its name. He had been chosen. But how? Dumbledore collected Harry, brought him to his office with the Ministry officials, and discussed the matter with them. Apparently Harry had been chosen as the fourth champion. After about an hour of raised voices and possible loopholes, the Ministry officials decided to allow Harry to compete. Dumbledore allowed him to leave, but has he was exiting he asked Harry

“Harry, did you or anyone else that you know of put your name in the goblet” he asked. Harry shook his head. “You may go” he said, but not without giving Harry that sensation of being x-rayed with his electric blue eyes. Harry crawled back into the Gryffindor common room. It was packed, hundreds of eyes fixed on Harry. He walked slowly to the dormitories. Before entering he turned and said

“I bet you probably think I cheated and put my name in that goblet. Well, I didn’t. Happy?” he entered the dorm. All of his roommates were waiting for him. “I suppose you think I’m lying then” he said

“No. I believe you mate” Ron said after a long and awkward silence. “Those champions have got to go through hell. There’s no way you would want to sign up for that”

“I believe you too Harry” said Neville Longbottom, a misfortunate boy whom Harry was friends with.

“Me too” piped up Dean Thomas. Seamus Finnegan, Harry’s other roommate didn’t say anything. He stood, looking threateningly at Harry.

“I don’t. This is exactly the kind of thing you’d do Potter. You heard Dumbledore talk about winning. Eternal glory, he said. This is just another one of you stupid publicity stunts.”

“Like beating Voldemort when I was a baby that was another stunt to eh? How thick are you Seamus” Harry retorted. Seamus dived at him, thankfully stopped by Dean. He was red with fury

“How…dare...call...me...thick…leggo Dean!” Harry stormed into his bed, and drew the curtains so hard he nearly ripped them. He was frustrated as he tried to get some sleep, wondering how his name had popped out of the goblet.

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