The Hogwarts students have been taking their end of year exams.
Rodney, Tale, Cordelia, Alastor, and Flora were taking their astronomy exams, but chose to leave to investigate suspicious behavior. Rodney and Alastor confronted Jeremiah Blitzen. He admits that he pretended to be Roy Jones. He and the grabbers are taking Rachel. Blitzen breaks Rodney and Alastor’s wands.
Rodney accepts that he is going to fail astronomy.
Carobelle arrives around this time, with her personal “proctor” who helps administer her exams to her in an “alternate format”, arranged by her father’s wealth and influence. The proctor is a mild mannered old man.
They tell Sinestra that Rachel has been kidnapped by the grabbers. Sinestra reveals that Dumbledore is away from the castle for some reason, and she will get a message to him. Sinestra’s patronus is a silver hawk.
The students debate whether they should simply wait, and leave this matter in Dumbledore’s hands.
Carobelle thinks this is a mistake. If Dumbledore doesn’t return quickly enough, Rachel could be left an empty shell. Rachel has been a bit off lately, with a rattled memory and a drinking problem, but she is still a friend, or at least a girl who was popular enough once to be worth pursuing as a friend.
Flora is certain her roles as an action heroine have prepared her to help in just such a situation.
Cordelia is uncertain if they can make a difference.
Rodney uses a telescope in the room to study the forest. Something in a tree catches his eye. A first year training broom.
It must have been there from the last time the students took out the training brooms, at the beginning of the school year, almost nine months ago.
Alastor uses the broom he took from Crabbe to fly out to the forest and recover the training broom. Now they have two brooms.
Malfoy who has been watching all of this while taking his astronomy exam comments that this is surely Longbottom’s training broom from the Remember-All incident.
They decide that they could ride three to a broom and get down to the ground level from the astronomy tower. Alastor takes the lead in flying one broom, and Flora takes the lead in flying the other broom. They both fly well, ensuring that the students land safely on the ground.
They fly out to the forest, hovering along closer to ground level, so it is not as dangerous.
(Aside: Their astronomy scores will be:
Alastair – 17 (troll)
Rodney – 22 (poor)
Flora – 17 (troll)
Cordelia – 21 (dreadful)
Tally – 20 (dreadful)
Carobelle – 0 (did not take; will ultimately get an “acceptable incomplete”)
They reach the edge of the forest. Flora is curious since she hasn’t been to the forest before. Rodney and Alastor are using Draco & Goyle’s wands. (Alastor has promised to help get Draco on the Qidditch team in exchange for this help.)
Rodney remembers the way to the grabber’s hut.
There is less devil’s snare in the forest than the last time the group was there, likely due to the change in the weather.
They see a distant glow, and put out their own lights, and try to creep up the hill stealthily, towards the hut.
Tale, Cordelia, and Carobelle creep up the hill. Tale stumbles and has to grab a thorny branch to maintain her balance, taking a minor wound.
Rodney and Alastor fly up on one broom. Flora flies up on another broom. She struggles, but makes it.
However, the sounds are enough to cause a man in a black cloak to emerge from the hut.
Rodney and Alastor recognize him as one of the men who were with Jeremiah. The grabbers are here!
Flora attempts to use a spell she used in a movie that would cause a rope to shoot out from her wand and bind the man. Nothing happens.
Rodney attempts to stun the man, using Draco’s wand. The wand must be really special [he rolls like double 40s or something equally crazy]. The man in the black cloak slumps to the ground.
Cordelia sneaks around to the back of the hut. The hole that they snuck in last time is boarded over, but she is able to transfigure the board covering the hole into sand.
Tale adds a sleep spell to the man stunned on the ground so he won’t get back up.
Carobelle watches for anyone else to come out, wand at the ready.
They all hear whispering inside the hut. “Get back in here.” A girl screaming!
Alastor flies closer to the door.
Rodney rushes inside and sees three men with knives. Jeremiah Blitzen is one of the three.
Rodney stuns one of the adults with a wand in his hand. He falls to the ground and drops the wand.
Cordelia sneaks in the back and sees Rachel chained to a bed, and Rodney facing Jeremiah Blitzen and another man.
Tale follows Rodney inside and casts sleep on the adult who is still standing. He falls asleep.
Jeremiah laughs. “You fool, that was the squib.”
Jeremiah pulls out his wand and casts a spell. The hut is engulfed in darkness. Outside, Carobelle and Alastor can see blackness rolling out the door.
Alastor attempts to transfigure the darkness into something they can see through, but it doesn’t work.
Flora continues to try spells from movies. They continue to not work. She looks very stylish, though.
Rodney successfully casts Lumos. It makes him visible to everyone in the hut, but he can’t make out anyone else. He snuffs the light.
Cordelia thinks she may have seen Jeremiah turns towards her and the back of the hut. She attempts to cast a curse on him, but thinks it didn’t work.
Flora crawls towards where she remembers the bed to be located to try to unchain Rachel. She tries an “out of the book spell” – the unlocking charm – which finally works. She frees Rachel, and feels the sensation of real magic flowing through her.
There is a sudden strange feeling of approaching horror. Something is coming of unspeakable dread. It’s coming from the direction of the castle. It’s like a scream inside each of their souls.
Carobelle outside the hut turns back towards the castle to see what is coming. She sees trees falling over and something moves towards them.
Rodney crawls along the floor and recovers the dropped wands from the wizard on the floor of the hut, and at the door.
Tale helps levitate Rachel over to the hole in the back.
Carobelle sees four men in robes running up the hill away from what is coming from the castle. They look like they are also with the grabbers.
She casts Tarantallegra on the man in the lead. He starts dancing and falling back down the hill.
Alastor transfigures the ground in front of the men coming up the hill. They fall into the quicksand, but the falling trees give them sound traction. They are falling back towards whatever is coming.
One of the men succeeds in casting “Confrigo”. A huge ring of fire surrounds the hill that the hut is on. It’s 24 feet high. A barrier perhaps, to keep out whatever is coming.
The sense of immense evil approaching continues. The wall of fire bows inward as if something is pushing against it.
Flora tries to open a hole in the back of the ring of fire, behind the grabber’s hut. But, as she opens the fire, she sees more black cloaked men on the other side. She closes the curtain of fire.
Rodney hears a loud crack inside the hut.
Alastor swoops down with the broom, and picks up Carobelle. They attempt to flee upward. As they get higher, they can see, on the other side of the flames, what looks like an empty cloak. It’s risen up, like a snake. The flames are parting in front of it.
Carobelle has the brief thought that it has come to save them from the grabbers, crazy as that sounds.
The cloak slithers up the hill, ignoring the quicksand and enters the blackened hut.
Rodney runs out of the hut with a fistful of wands. The three bad guy wands, Draco’s wand, and his own broken wand.
The cloak wraps around one the grabbers and drains him.
Everyone flees by broom. They flee first away from the castle, and then circle up and turn around.
Rachel is just gibbering. It’s likely her memory will never recover, though Cordelia vows to continue to study and master memory charms and help her.
We fly back to the astronomy tower. The plan is to take Rachel to the nurse. On the way, coming down through the astronomy tower, we pass Sinestra’s office.
She sees us. She sees Rachel.
We try to tell her what we saw. She orders us into her office, while she takes Rachel to the nurse.
It’s a long wait.
We see the exam tubes and consider finishing the incomplete exams, but decide that the risk of getting caught is too great.
Sinestra returns. She assures us that Rachel will be fine, and is in Madame Pomfrey’s care.
She pours tea and asks for the whole story.
We suspect it’s truth-telling tea, but aren’t afraid to tell the truth. [Everyone spends willpower to describe what’s happened to a teacher.]
Sinestra seems to believe them. She does say that she won’t make them take remedial astronomy if they fail as a result of their adventures, but that she won’t change their grades.
Rodney pockets one of the grabber’s wands, and gives the other two to SInestra as evidence.
Sinestra offers to arrange a special trip to London for them to purchase new wands. Carobelle offers to buy them extremely nice wands, and fast enough that they would have wands to finish their exams (rather than waiting for their parents to send the money). They forgive her for ignoring them sometimes for more popular people.
Sinestra speculates that Dumbledore won’t believe it, and will think it is anti-muggle propaganda. She agrees to call for Mr. Dimes to return, so there is an objective outside party involved in the investigation.
She is not sure that she can return for the London shopping trip.
Carobelle suggests that Quirrel could take them. He’s nice.
Sinestra’s face falls. “Harry Potter killed Professor Quirrel last night.”
They are all shocked.
“Is that a Gryffindor thing? Murder?”
Sinestra nods solemnly. “Yes. Yes it is.”
Harry Potter claims the Dark Lord was inhabiting Professor Quirrel.
It does seem connected to what they saw last night. The cloak coming from the castle…
We say nothing of our adventures, but hear a lot of gossip about Harry Potter’s adventure. There was a 3-headed dog as rumored. There was something Dumbledore was protecting. Something taken from Gringotts. The philosopher’s stone. The alchemical key to eternal life.
It is ultimately Madame Pince the Librarian who takes us to London. Rodney and Malfoy return Draco and Goyle’s wands so they’ll have them for class.
In London, at Olivander’s, Carobelle tells him to bring out “the good stock”. He brings very fancy wands, set in velvet boxes.
While Rodney and Alastor shop, the group asks Olivander questions about wands, and what can be learned from them.
He says you can usually find the last spell cast, and the person who owned it or borrowed it.
Rodney shows him the third wand that he’d kept.
Olivander identifies it as the wand of a dead witch with a French sounding name. She was killed 8 years ago under mysterious circumstances. It’s a French wizard from wizarding family with members in London. This is dangerous. Magical Law Enforcement still has the case open; they never caught the killers. Rodney plans to give the wand to Mr. Dimes when he arrives.
We return in time for breakfast.
We take more exams:
Rodney Outstanding in Charms
Carobelle Outstanding in Charms
Flora Carrow Exceeds Expectations in Charms
Talle Atwell Outstanding in Charms
Cordelia Outstanding in Charms
Alastor Burke Outstanding in Charms
At lunch, we are feeling cheerful, though everyone else is more awake than us.
Carobelle = barely Acceptable
Flora = Poor
Rodney = Outstanding
Talle = Outstanding
Cordelia = Exceeds Expectations
Alastor = Exceeds Expectations
2 Acceptable (Potions & Transfiguration)
3 Exceeds (Herbology, Defense Against Dark Arts, & History of Magic)
1 Outstanding (Charms)
1 N/A (Astronomy)
Sinestra finds them at lunch. She had wanted to investigate the wand with McGonagall, but it was reclaimed by its owner.
She warns them that they cannot go after Jeremiah Blitzen. There is not enough evidence. His parents are very influential and popular. He might have been acting under an Imperius Curse.
She does want them to keep an eye on him.
Carobelle observes that if they want to make him unpopular, they would have to first make his parents unpopular.
They all attend the end of year feast, happy at Slytherin’s dominating lead (160 points). Then, Dumbledore changes everything and awards a bunch of points to Harry Potter and his stupid friends. Just enough for them to win. And then he changes the banners from Slytherin to Gryffindor. Like that’s fair.
Such obvious favoritism.
Absolutely no acknowledgment of their heroism. Of course.
Rodney plans to apply to study alchemy.
Cordelia tells them that she is planning to go to Beaux Batons next year, and so this is goodbye, except for Carobelle who is still her step-sister. They are surprised and concerned by this.
Cordelia and Carobelle invite everyone to their house over the summer for a two-week house party.
Flora is expecting to spend most of the summer working on the play, and expects another scroll with more of the script over the summer.
Sinestra invites us to retire to her tower, after we are deeply disappointed by house cup outcome.
Many students have already left; we go with Sinestra
“Well, I told Dumbledore everything. And, he seemed troubled. I believe he will actually investigate the whole matter. However, he told me he will need to seem to pay it no mind, and discount it. He believes, as I do, that dark forces have penetrated the castle, and are spying.”
“Dumbledore is showing utter favoritism to Gryffindor over Slytherin on purpose. Because Slytherins are suspicious of muggles, he suspects those helping grabbers are in the other houses. By appearing to slight Slytherins at every turn, he is lulling the muggle-friendly grabbers into a false sense of security.”
Sinestra says that we have restored her faith in the future of the house, and that Slytherin is way ahead in house points this year, in her heart.
She warns us to be careful over the summer.
Mors Mordre has taken a blow on campus with the graduation of Miss Akimbo. She and her cohorts could be causing trouble out in the wizarding world now.
We board the train. Snape gives us permission forms to be able to go to Hogsmeade as 3rd years, next year.
When the train reaches London, we are met by our families.
Rodney’s family meets him. They are full of congratulations to Gryffindor (and family members in Gryffindor) for the big house cup victory. Rodney grumbles, but then plays along, being a very good sport, so his family will let him come to the summer house party at the Nott’s.
Alastor’s parents are there, along with his older brother Valraven. His parents are relatively cool to him after his misadventures this year, but his sister is warm to him. His parents ask him about the Dark Lord rumors. They don’t really believe it. They think it is a cover for Harry Potter to not get in trouble for murdering a professor.
Cordelia & Carobelle are met by the Nott’s butler. He also picks up Theodore (Carobelle’s brother) and Cordelia’s sister. Theodore has done pretty well in his first year. Carobelle helped him as she could to be popular.
Flora is joined by her sister as she gets off the train. Her parents rush them both out of the train station. They are not mingling with any of the wizarding families, and seem conspicuously uncomfortable.
Tale is met by her parents and brother. Her big cat looks wistfully at the train, missing Hogwarts where he is King of Cats.
2nd year is over
3rd year book will be called:
[Your character’s name] and the Hogmeade’s Tomb