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Chapter 5 : Quidditch World Cup
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Quidditch World Cup
It wasn’t until Sunday that Harry had a visitor in Grimmauld Place. Andromeda Tonks knocked on the door about midday with baby Teddy Lupin. Harry welcomed them in happily; he had been sitting around doing nothing since he returned from the Burrow on Friday. Andromeda and Tonks made their way inside and Andromeda folded Teddy’s pram with a flick of her wand, placing him in a high chair she just as magically conjured. Andromeda hurried over and embraced Harry in a caring hug. Teddy Lupin, now over a year old was bigger than Harry had ever remembered him. Harry hadn’t seen Teddy for a few months and had missed his first birthday, because of his Ministry Training. He had however, bought him a present.
‘How are you?’ Harry asked Andromeda.
She removed her coat and smiled, ‘I’m very well, thank you.’ She replied. ‘And you?’
‘I’m fine, thanks.’ Harry said, ‘Even if I’m completely and utterly bored here.’
Andromeda smirked, ‘Surely, Molly would welcome you with open arms.’
‘Yeah, but I wanted to be independent.’ Harry replied, ‘I think living in my own home is the first step, right?’
‘Right,’ Andromeda smiled, ‘And you’ve been living here a while now. I’m glad to see you’re doing okay.’
‘How is Teddy?’ Harry asked, glancing over at the boy, who’s hair had turned into a deep blue colour, the same shade as the walls.
‘Better than ever.’ Andromeda beamed, and Harry grinned back, ‘Good to hear.’ He said, and waved his wand. Two cups of tea emerged in front of him and landed on the coffee table softly. Andromeda took up a seat and took a sip of her tea, and Harry followed suit.
‘I’m sorry I missed his birthday...’ Harry said, rather quietly, but Andromeda waved her hand dismissively.
‘There is no need to apologise, Harry.’ She said, ‘He had a great day, and I know you were really busy training.’
Harry nodded as if to say, ‘I really was!’ and put down his cup of tea. ‘I did get him a gift, though.’ He said, happily, ‘Accio Present.’
A clutter could be heard from upstairs, and then a whooshing sound was heard as the gift, completely wrapped, zoomed down the stairs and into the Sitting Room into Harry’s waiting hands.
‘Oh, you didn’t have to!’ Andromeda protested but Harry shook his head, handing over the present.
‘No, I wanted to.’ Harry said, ‘Go ahead, and open it for him.’
Andromeda ripped open the packaging to reveal a small model broomstick. It was only about a foot in length, and the broom end had been tied up with golden bands, just like a real broomstick.
‘Sirius bought me one like that for my first birthday... and it just seemed to... I dunno, fit... that I buy Teddy one. It doesn’t hover more than a foot above the ground, and it’s got charms on it to stop him falling off and-’
‘Oh, Harry!’ Andromeda’s smile only grew, ‘It’s a wonderful gift! It’s so thoughtful of you!’
‘It was nothing, really.’ Harry tried to say, but Andromeda had once again embraced him in a hug.
When she pulled away, she continued to talk to Harry. It was nice to catch up with someone he hadn’t seen in a while and Harry talked to her about all sorts; his training with the Ministry, the news of the Malfoy deaths (Andromeda had been sad to hear this and Harry never failed to be amazed at how sorry Andromeda felt at the loss of her relatives; despite the fact they openly hated her and wanted nothing to do with her.) and even the Quidditch World Cup for a short time.
‘I think Teddy likes Quidditch.’ Andromeda smiled, ‘He’s always pointing at the pictures of the Quidditch games from Ted’s old books. He doesn’t show interest in any of the other books.’
‘Well, it runs in the family.’ Harry said, and although she knew Teddy wasn’t directly related to Harry, she considered them the same and nodded.
‘Just don’t give him any ideas about flying off around Hogwarts in his first year.’ Andromeda joked, and Harry grinned mischievously.
‘What kind of Godfather would I be if I didn’t give him some mischief to get up to?’ He asked, almost seriously.
A short time later and Andromeda bid her goodbye. Taking Teddy off the broom he had been riding around the room, and taking the broom too, she unfolded the pram and placed them inside. Harry saw her to the door and watched her disappear down the street, and in the distance, watched her apparate with Teddy into nothingness.
Although Harry saw Ron and Ginny almost every day at the Ministry of Magic, he remained at Grimmauld Place for the next week. He was growing quite accustomed to living alone but he was sure the only reason he was bearing it was because he knew that Ginny was going to bring up the idea of moving out with Mrs Weasley when she turned eighteen. Harry thought that Mr Weasley and Ginny’s brothers wouldn’t mind that much. They knew how much Ginny meant to him, and even though Mrs Weasley did too, he wasn’t so sure that she would be so happy to let her youngest child move out especially as it was only her and Ron who still lived there on a permanent basis but Harry decided he would cross that bridge when he came to it.
Harry promised Ron and Ginny however that he would visit The Burrow the following Tuesday after training, mainly because he was only there for a few hours and Ginny had no training on a Tuesday. It seemed to be the day where they all had the most free time, and so after work on the first day of June, Harry made his way to The Burrow instead of back home to Grimmauld Place. Mrs Weasley had of course taken Harry’s visit into much bigger proportion than he had wished, and she had once again cooked a huge meal for the whole family. While they all sat at dinner, Harry realised the family had not decreased in size. Bill was still there, not yet returned to Egypt.
‘They are still investigating the murder of Adam Akil.’ Bill grimaced, ‘They confirmed he was hit with the Killing Curse, but have no idea who any potential suspects are.’
‘Is that why you haven’t returned?’ Harry asked, and Bill nodded.
‘I was working very near to that village, and Gringotts don’t want to lose what they say is one of their best Curse-breakers. They want to be sure the area is safe before resurfacing me there.’ Bill explained.
‘Well, no-one is complaining.’ George boasted, ‘It’s been great having you home.’
‘Speaking of which,’ Mr Weasley spoke, ‘I’ve had news from Charlie. Apparently, it’s going great in Romania and he said he’ll be home in three weeks time for a long deserved holiday.’
‘When did you hear this?’ Ginny asked.
‘Charlie sent me an Owl this morning.’ Mr Weasley replied. ‘What time is the draw being held?’
‘Four o’clock.’ Ron answered, automatically. He glanced at the clock, ‘In ten minutes.’
‘What do you reckon, then, Ron?’ George asked, ‘Think we’ll get an easy draw?’
Ron shrugged, ‘Luck, ain’t it? Who knows?’
‘Uh.’ Harry spoke up, ‘What are you talking about?’
Every eye on the table, turned to Harry, but when he still stared blankly, Ron blurted out, ‘Well, the Quidditch World Cup Draw of course. The two groups are announced today.’
‘Groups?’ Harry asked, and Ron slapped his hand on his head.
‘Well, I told you a couple of weeks ago, didn’t I?’ Ron replied, ‘There are two groups. Each team plays each other and the top team from both groups advance to the World Cup final.’
Harry shook his head, ‘Oh, yeah – of course.’
Ron stood up and walked over to the Wireless that was floating an inch or so above the mantelpiece. He grabbed it and pulled it back over to the table. He tapped it with his wand, and muttered, ‘Quidditch Central’ and at first Harry heard static, but then, voices cleared through the static. A radio station, Harry figured.
‘Welcome back to the Quidditch World Cup Draw...’ The voice from the radio spoke.
Everyone around the table, even Hermione and Mrs Weasley, leaned forward and listened intently.
‘The first Group draw is about to begin.’ The voice said, ‘Are you ready to begin, Walton?’
The voice named Walton replied, ‘We sure are, Dave.’
‘Then continue.’ Dave said, and there was a sound of what sounded like a wand casting a spell and a ball popping out of a chute of some kind. Harry heard Walton call, ‘And the first team of Group One, Ireland!’
There was a general chatter around the Weasley table, but Ron hushed them up, as Walton continued talking after a second pop was heard from the Wireless.
‘Joining them in Group One are Canada.’ Walton announced, and after a third pop he said, ‘And the third team is the USA.’
‘Ireland, Canada and the USA.’ George recapped, ‘Seems like Ireland have it in the bag so far.’
Harry guessed that Canada and USA were not the best teams in the world by George’s reaction, but wondered if England were going to be drawn. Did they have a Quidditch team? The next draw answered his unasked question, as Walton called, ‘The fourth team in Group One is United Kingdom.’
There was a cheer on the table as the home nation was announced to be in Group One, and Walton continued, ‘And the final team in Group One are Bulgaria.’
There was a long groan at the table, and Harry heard Walton say, ‘Join us in ten minutes for the second Group draw.’
‘Ireland AND Bulgaria?’ Ron repeated, aghast. Harry remembered both teams were finalists of the 1994 Quidditch World Cup. Both teams were very good.
‘It’s not all bad.’ Bill called, ‘We have Canada and USA, two teams we know we can beat.’
‘So how are the United Kingdom team?’ Harry asked, who had never seen them play nor heard much about them. Ron shrugged, ‘We’re certainly not the best around. But a lot better than some teams.’
Bill continued, ‘Ireland and Bulgaria are the two best teams in the world at the moment though. Krum has only improved since the last World Cup and the Irish team are as secure as ever.’
They discussed the Group for a couple more minutes, until the Wireless turned itself up and Dave spoke, ‘Welcome back to the Quidditch World Cup Draw, and now we will begin the draw for the second round – Walton?’
Over the next few minutes, the teams drawn for Group Two were Japan, Spain, France, Australia and finally Germany. Harry was confused about one thing though.
‘Hang on, if they were the only five teams left, why have a draw for them?’ He asked, and Ginny answered him.
‘Because the draw isn’t just to decide which Group you are in... it also decides order of play. The first and fourth teams drawn in each group will play each other first and the second and third will play each other also, and then they’ll alternate. The fifth team gets the week off.’
‘So when do the matches start?’ Harry asked curiously, ‘I’d like to hear some matches, if possible.’
‘Well, it starts on Saturday.’ Ron said, ‘Tell you what Harry, why don’t we come over to Grimmauld Place and I’ll bring the second Wireless we have. We all know how bored you get, Harry.’
Harry thought this was a great idea, ‘Yeah, that’d be great.’
‘Good.’ Ron smiled, ‘Me, Hermione and Ginny will come over on Saturday then.’
Harry beamed, ‘So, on Saturday, United Kingdom will play Ireland and Canada will play USA, giving Bulgaria the week off, right?’
Ron nodded, ‘Yeah. Ireland will be tough, but hopefully, we can beat them. Or at least not lose by a huge amount. It’s all decided on points, like the Quidditch House Cup at Hogwarts.’
‘How is it going at Hogwarts, Hermione?’ Harry asked.
‘Brilliant, Harry.’ Hermione was pleased to announce, ‘Professor Sprout and Professor Flitwick are retiring in two weeks though, when the term ends.’
‘How are the students doing?’ He asked. Harry knew that Luna was taking her N.E.W.T.s now in her seventh year, and several students from his year decided to repeat the year and get N.E.W.T.s this year so a lot of the Seventh year students and students from Harry’s year had studied N.E.W.T.s together.
‘Well, Luna, Dean and Seamus are all about to start their exams. I think they’ll all do well though, at least in Charms. From when I’ve watched classes, they’ve done really well.’ Hermione explained.
‘Have you thought of how it’ll be like to teach yet?’ Mrs Weasley asked.
‘Well – Me and Neville – We haven’t actually been offered jobs yet, and - ’
‘Oh, come off it!’ Ron interrupted, ‘McGonagall hasn’t been training anyone else, nor has she been looking for any other staff and so we all know that she’s going to make you and Neville teachers in September.’
‘She hasn’t given us jobs yet.’ Hermione repeated, ‘And I don’t intend to jump to conclusions.’
‘Well, she’ll be crazy if she doesn’t give you a job.’ Ron said, ‘I can’t think of anyone better for it.’
Hermione blushed furiously, and Ron’s ears pinked when he noticed this. There was an awkward silence, and Harry was not sure whether to keep deathly silent or burst out laughing, and so he coughed feebly and decided to change the conversation back to Quidditch.
‘So when will the finals be held?’ Harry asked.
‘The matches are usually played in quick succession.’ Ginny answered, ‘Usually a game for each team, bar the fifth of course, a weekend, spanning over a month.’
Ron added, ‘The final is played on Tuesday 13th July.’
‘Maybe we could get tickets for the finals, is it in the same place as last time?’ Harry asked, but Ron laughed.
‘Well, yeah, but - ’ Ron looked at his family, and then back at Harry, ‘Tickets cost a lot of money.’
‘I have money.’ Harry said automatically, but the family immediately rejected his offer.
‘We couldn’t take your money - ’ George started.
‘ - We’ve been once, we were grateful for that - ’ Mr Weasley added.
‘ - Don’t be stupid, Harry. You are not spending tens of Galleons on tickets for us.’ Ron said, firmly.
‘But it was a nice thought.’ Mrs Weasley added, feeling her son’s approach was rude. But Harry had no intentions of listening to them, and thought that out of the tons of Galleons he had gotten since the fall of Voldemort, tickets for the 1999 Quidditch World Cup wouldn’t be a bad investment at all.
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