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Stayin' Alive

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"How're we supposed to know if something's wrong?" Hermione asked worriedly. "What if he's dying? We won't be able to help!"

"I'd like to say everything will be okay but this is Harry we're talking about," Ron admitted.

"H-hey guys," a blushing Neville approached, standing awkwardly before them. "Uh, can I join you?"

"Sure, mate," Ron scooted over.

Hermione turned to Neville and immediately demanded, "Can you believe them? They know there's an underage wizard competing in a potentially life-and-death competition and the only form of communication is red sparks? What if you lose both your arms? Or your wand breaks? What then, huh?"

The poor boy had no idea how to respond and looked helplessly at the ginger-haired Gryffindor.

"Hermione, worrying isn't gonna help Harry. He'll be alright."

"But he's a danger magnet, you said so yourself!"

"Yes, but he's always managed to survive. He's a plucky ole tosser he is."

"Attention everyone, there's been a slight alteration," Ludo Bagman's voice boomed across the audience. "To spice things up, we will be able to hear all the champions as they make their way through the maze."

"Now we can hear Potter's pitiful screams as the Boy-Who-Lived is defeated when he stubs his toe," Draco jeered, Dumb and Dumber nodding mutely beside him with matching idiotic grins on their faces.

"Shut it, Ferret-Face," Ron glared.

The pale boy's skin tinted pink at the muffled laughter around them. "Why don't you come over here and make me, you filthy blood traitor!"

Before it could turn into a brawl, Bagman's voice interrupted, "Let's check in with Mr. Diggory first!"

The audience immediately silenced, ears straining to listen carefully. They heard the sound of feet crushing grass and Cedric's breaths coming out in huffs as he ran.

"Let's move on to Ms. Delacour."

Much like Cedric, Fleur and Viktor were silent as well, only their breathing audible.

"And finally, Mr. Potter!"

"…music loud and women warm, I've been kicked around since I was born~" Harry paused. "Well, that's an understatement, with the troll and fucking Two-Face and a basilisk and his overly emotional whiny little shit-head of a master. I mean really," he bitched, "what kind of a badass villain keeps a diary like some stupid tween?"

"Uh…" Was Hermione's reaction.

"He kept a diary?" Neville said incredulously.

"Oh yeah, it was hot pink and glittery and sparkly," Ron nodded enthusiastically. "There were little unicorns and hearts drawn everywhere too."

"Nag, nag, nag, whine, whine, whine, me, me, me! I have daddy issues! Look at me everyone!"

Many in the crowd burst out laughing.

"Oh woe me, my daddy wasn't a syphilis-ridden, inbred dickwad with a broom up his arse! Well boo fucking hoo!"

"Ohhhh snap!" Lee Jordan snickered.

"What is a dickwad?" Lavender whispered to Parvati.

"Do you think maybe Harry's cracking under the pressure?" Hermione turned to Ron.

"I don't know." He shrugged, grinning, "But it's bloody brilliant!"

"If you ask me, if you wanna be an evil mastermind, don't put your fucking evil secret layer below the girl's bathroom! That's just pervy and unhygienic and really smelly!"

Many feminine voices cried out in outrage.

"Below the what?!"

"You've got to be kidding me!"

"That creep!"

"And what's with the ugly-ass Dark Mark? Talk about tacky! Who the hell designed it? You had to be on shrooms to think that was a good idea. Overcompensating much? Or, don't tell me, the posse of knock-off Stormtroopers had an art competition. One way or another, they can't draw for shit! And speaking of, why Death Eater? What, was Kilgrave taken? Oh wait, never mind, yes it is."

Suddenly, some closet pureblood comic book nerd jumped up and yelled, "The Purple Man! I know him!"

His fellow purebloods looked at him with weirded out expressions.

"Really, it's sad that you have to throw a parade every time you go outside. We get it, you weren't hugged enough as a child."

"Where has this Harry been hiding all this time?" Fred said incredulously.

"He's so sassy. I feel like a proud mama!" George wiped a fake tear from his eyes.

"One thing's for sure, you aren't good with names, Tommy. I am Tom Marvolo Riddle, Lord Voldemort? No, I think not, more like Mr. Dildo Lover."

All the muggle-borns and some half-bloods burst out into laughter while the purebloods looked confused, yet again, and frustrated at not being in on the joke.

"What's a dildo?" Someone said.

"I believe it is a phallic-shaped sex toy," Luna explained with a serene look on her face.

Many pureblood jaws dropped at that.

The crowd quieted when they heard another voice.

"It seems Mr. Potter has found the Sphinx!" Ludo Bagman's voice said.

"I don't suppose you can just look the other way—no? No. Okay. Didn't think so."

"First think of the person who lives in disguise, who deals in secrets and tells naught but lies. Next tell me what's always the last thing to mend, the middle of middle and end of the end? And finally give me the sound often heard, during the search for a hard-to-find word. Now string them together, and answer me this, which creature would you be unwilling to kiss?"

"I would say your mum but I don't want to be mauled to death so…hm…" Harry was quiet. "…disguise, secrets, oh god, uh…James Bond! No that's not right. Middle of middle." He asked the Sphinx to repeat some lines and she did. "Oh fuck…what is this bloody thing? Ugh…wait!" Harry gasped. "I get it! Spy-d-er! Spider!"

The sphinx smiled.

"Bet that would have been Ron's first guess."

Ron shuddered in the crowd.

"I figured that out without any help," Harry said, pleased with himself. "Hermione can be such a smarty-pants. Except for that one time she turned herself into a cat."

Hermione's face turned beet red as Ron laughed, all eyes in the audience turning to her.

"Let's check on the other champions!" Ludo's words were met with some groans of disappointment. "Let's see how Ms. Delacour is doing."

Only breathing was heard. The response was the same with Viktor. Things were more interesting with Cedric.

He was breathing loudly too but they could just hear a familiar voice singing in the background once again.

"…got mud on your face—"

All the muggle-borns and some half-bloods jumped in, recognizing the lyrics, stomping their feet, clapping, and singing along.

"—YOU BIG DISGRACE, KICKING YOUR CAN ALL OVER THE PLACE, SAYING WE WILL WE WILL ROCK YOU!"

The purebloods looked vaguely terrified.

"Have they formed a cult?" Pansy said worriedly.

"Let's get back to Potter!" Dean yelled.

"We want Potter!" Seamus got everyone riled up.

"We want Potter! We want Potter! We want Potter!"

"We're going to Mr. Potter now," Ludo caved in.

"Booyah! The cup!" Harry cheered. He gasped, "That was so American. Thank god no one heard me."

"Harry?" Cedric's voice was heard.

"Shit! You speak one word of this and…I'll tell everyone you're a sparkly vampire that likes to watch girls sleep!"

"…Uh, okay?"

"How do you wanna do this? The old-fashioned way? Rock, papers, scissors, best 2 out of 3!"

"Don't you mean wand, parchment, quill?"

"Yeah, sure, whatever. Let's go!"

"I didn't mean let's do that. I only meant that's what it's called in the wizarding world."

"Too late! Here we go!"

"I'm not doing this."

"Yes, you are."

"What're you doing?"

"Here I come!"

"Race you for it?"

"…Okay."

"This is supposed to be a competition of magical talent," Snape grumbled.

"Young Mr. Potter's been pretty magical if you ask me. I haven't laughed like that in years!" McGonagall chuckled.

"Indeed," Dumbledore's eyes twinkled in amusement.

A loud swishing sound filled the air.

"I didn't know the cup was a portkey," Cedric said. "Is this part of the maze? Where are we?"

The officials froze at his words.

"A creepy-ass graveyard," Harry answered. "At this point, I'm not surprised. Well, props to the decorator. They definitely nailed the murder-y vibe."

"Albus! What's happening?" McGonagall said frantically. "This isn't part of the tournament!"

The crowd looked around, puzzled.

"What's going on?" Neville asked.

"Harry's bad luck strikes again," Ron shook his head.

"I knew it!" Hermione fretted. "I knew something like this would happen! Look at Dumbledore! Even he looks worried!"

"I've been here before," Harry said. "In a dream."

Some of the students began to realize something was wrong.

"I don't think this is part of the task."

"What's going on?"

"Cedric, we need to leave right now!"

Now everyone in the audience knew it wasn't part of the tournament. They began to whisper furiously with their neighbors, trying to figure out what was going on.

"Who are you?" Cedric demanded.

"Wormtail?!" Harry gasped.

"That's Peter Pettigrew!" Hermione cried out.

"Fucking Scabbers!" Ron cursed.

"My scar hurts!" Then Harry made a choking sound. "Chucky!He screeched.

"…No, it's the Dark Lord," Wormtail said.

"Oh. Oh! Phew," Harry exhaled loudly. "I thought you were holding Chucky! But it's just Old Moldy. Man, you really had me going for a second there."

"I'll apparate us to Hogshead!"

"Good thinking, son! That's my boy!" Amos Diggory said proudly.

"Shouldn't something have happened now?" Harry said.

"Something's wrong. I think there're wards against apparating!"

"It's okay, Cedric. You don't have to lie. Everyone has performance issues."

"Do you want to kill the spare?" Wormtail asked. "Avada Kedevra!"

"Depulso!" Harry yelled.

"Oof!"

The sound of a body thudding against a tombstone was heard.

Students cried out in the bleachers, clutching each other in fear.

"Quickly now!" A raspy voice ordered.

"Albus, do something!" McGonagall yelled.

"We don't know where they are!"

They heard a splashing noise and the sound of Harry struggling.

"What's he saying?" Snape scowled. "They're being too loud!" He looked at the students.

"We need to hear if we want to figure out where they are," McGonagall said.

"SILENCE!" Dumbledore's voice echoed throughout the stands.

Immediately, they quieted.

"—volunteer as tribute!" Harry's voice was heard. "Hah! Suck it, Wormtail! You can't forcibly take something I am willingly giving you!"

"Don't try to fool me. You can claim to want to give it willingly but you actually don't. The intent matters."

"Please tell me you sterilized that knife."

"The Dark Lord will rise again."

The students started to panic again. "Silencio!" Dumbledore's spell caused the stands to fall into silence.

"Ewwwwww! Naked Voldy! My eyes! They burrrrrnnn!"

"Does that mean he's back?" McGonagall whispered, horrified.

"I could live for a 1,000 years and that prune-y ass will still haunt my dreams!"

"Robe me," Voldemort ordered.

"Aw! Poor wittle Tommy. Never learned how to tie his shoes. Do you need velcro? They have ones that light up and squeak now!" Harry taunted.

"I'll deal with you soon. Call them," Voldemort said.

"It's him," Snape said gravely, clutching his arm.

"Go," Dumbledore nodded. "I'll explain later," he told McGonagall.

"Welcome, my friends. It's been 13 years. Yet here you stand before me as if it were only yesterday. I confess I'm disappointed. Not one of you tried to find me. Crabbe! McNair! Goyle!"

All eyes turned to Dumb and Dumber, and they shrank in their seats from the glares.

"Lucius!"

Draco turned so white he could give Nearly Headless Nick a run for his money.

"My lord, had I detected any sign or whisper of your—"

"There were signs, my slippery friend, and more than whispers."

"Hi, Luscious Locks!" Harry called out cheerfully. "I see that you're preparing to take that peacock Lockhart down for the title of Witch Weekly's sexiest hair. I bet you and Draco must go through more hair care products than half the female population at Hogwarts combined."

"Crucio!" Voldemort yelled.

The crowd flinched as if they were hit themselves.

Harry chuckled weakly. "Crucitatus curse? Pff! You've obviously never had an angry Aunt Petunia coming at you with her Frying Pan of Doom!"

"Silence, you impudent child!" Peter yelled. "How dare you talk to our master in this manner!"

"I'd give you an insulting nickname, but Wormtail pretty much covers it."

"Potter—" Voldemort began.

"Knock-knock."

Silence.

The crowd could practically hear the confusion.

"C'mon guys participate. I need some feedback here! When I say knock-knock, you say who's there? Now let's take it from the top."

Quiet incoherent mumblings were heard from the Death Eaters, likely pondering if the Boy-Who-Lived had lost his marbles.

"Knock-knock."

Silence.

"Who's there?" Harry said in a high-pitched muffled voice. "Not your nose that's who!" He laughed at his own joke.

Ron joined in silently like the good friend he was, shoulders shaking with laughter.

Wow, that was lame.

Some thought.

So dumb…

You could practically hear the crowd eye-roll.

A hissing sound was heard.

"Yeah? Well…at least I have a nose!" Harry replied indignantly. "Bet you wish you had one, didn't you Tommy?"

"No."

"Toh-mas?"

Voldemort hissed.

"Tim! Timmie!"

"It's Tom—NO! I mean it's Voldemort. I am Lord Voldemort!"

"Moldy-Shorts?"

"Potter's lost his mind," Draco said disbelievingly.

The crowd heard quiet humming. And it gradually got louder.

Then suddenly, Harry belted out, "NOW THIS IS THE STORY ALL ABOUT HOW MY LIFE GOT FLIPPED GOT TURNED UPSIDE-DOWN, AND I'D LIKE TO TAKE A MINUTE TO SIT RIGHT THERE AND TELL YOU HOW I BECAME THE PRINCE OF A TOWN CALLED—"

"Crucio!" Voldemort yelled.

"Bastard," Ron growled.

"That," Harry gasped, "that does it. I'm throwing down the gauntlet."

"You want to challenge me?"

"I whooped your pasty ass as a baby, I'll waste you now. Or are you gonna have your lap dogs do the dirty work, huh?" Harry taunted. "Chicken. Bwak, bak, bak, bak."

"I think the torture spell might have fried his brain..."

"You want a wizarding duel, boy?" Voldemort sneered. "Very well then. I will fulfill your wish. On your feet."

They heard Harry grunt as he likely struggled to stand.

"Oh Albus, what is he thinking?" McGonagall frowned.

"I don't know," the headmaster said, uncertainty in his voice.

"Okay, give me a minute to warm up here." Harry grunted as he likely stretched. "So, I've always wondered why people called you You-Know-Who. Doesn't it get confusing? You-Know-Who? You-Know-Who who? What the fuck? I don't know who! Is it Michael Jackson?"

"Enough of this insolence!" Voldemort snarled. "Feel my wrath! Avada Kedavra!"

There was an exploding sound.

"Ewww!" Harry squealed. "Our wands are touching!"

The next few minutes passed in relative confusion as they could not see what is happening. All they could hear was screaming and chaos. Suddenly, they heard Cedric's voice.

"Harry! Grab on! Accio, portkey!"

The two boys appeared before the crowd, lying panting on the ground.

"Fuck I hate that guy."

The crowd burst into cheers as Dumbledore removed the silencing spell. As the professors rushed toward the two, Amos Diggory's voice yelled out, loud and proud, "My son saved Harry Potter!"

"Harry!" Hermione yelled, running with Ron toward their friend.

They helped him sit up. "You would not believe what just happened," Harry said.

"Oh, we know. Bagman cast a spell so everyone could hear what was going on in the task," Ron explained.

"Everything?" Harry winced.

Ron grinned, "Booyah? Mr. Dildo Lover?"

"...Fuck." Harry's face paled, jumping from the amused faces of the student body to the unamused expressions on the faces of the Ministry of Magic. "Can you send me back? I want to die now."