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Thread: The October Bi-weekly Challenge - Part One -RESULTS

  1. #1
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    The October Bi-weekly Challenge - Part One -RESULTS

    THE OCTOBER BI-WEEKLY CHALLENGE


    “Is it the shrewd October wind
    Brings the tears into her eyes?
    Does it blow so strong that she must fetch
    Her breath in sudden sighs?”


    William Dean Howells – Gone


    October is a dull and dreary month for us Muggles, but not so for the students of Hogwarts. Not only do they have Halloween to look forward to, but the excitement of Quidditch is rapidly gaining pace. The first match of the season may be in November, but training begins in earnest in October.

    The challenge for the next two weeks is to write a drabble involving October and Quidditch. It doesn’t have to be a match. It doesn’t have to be at Hogwarts. But there must be a Quidditch theme and it must be in October. Be creative!

    A note about drabbles. You are allowed to use a beta (we beg you to use a beta) because it’s always a great shame when we read fantastic drabbles but have to discount them because of SPaG errors.

    All drabbles should be between 300-500 words. All MNFF guidelines must be followed.

    Points:

    Five points for participation – that is per entrant not per entry.
    First – 15 points
    Second – 10 points
    Third – 5 points

    The barmaids reserve the right to award more or less points and places depending on the quality of the drabbles. We have not cake-womaned anyone yet, but it could very well happen. **

    Use this form for your entry:



    PHP Code:
    [B]Name:[/B]
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    B]House:[/B]
    [
    B]Title:[/B]
    [
    B]Ratings/Warnings:[/B]
    [
    B]Word Count:[/B]
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    B]A/N:[/B
    This competition will close on Monday 15th October at 9PM. And then I shall hand you over to the newest member of the team.

    Good Luck!


    ~Madam Carmerta~

    ** And just what is 'cake-womaning'? The explanation is here.
    Last edited by Equinox Chick; 11-01-2012 at 09:06 AM.
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  2. #2
    Sixth Year Hufflepuff
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    Name: WeasleyMom
    House: Hufflepuff
    Title: untitled
    Ratings/Warnings: 3-5th
    Word Count: 500 in Word
    A/N: This is James Sirius and my OC Kenley Allen. Hogwarts. Seventh year. Also, many thanks to Kara for the fabulous, helpful beta work on this.



    Alone in the stands, James squinted into the darkening October sky as Kenley made one last circuit, reduced her speed, and flew in for a landing. He grabbed his broom and hurried down the steps, reaching the edge of the pitch at the same moment she did.

    “James!” she said breathlessly, jumping back.

    He grinned, shaking his head in awe. “You can fly.”

    “You startled me.” She looked past him, toward the castle. No one else was around. “You know, for someone who says he’s not asking me out, you follow me around a lot.”

    “Don’t flatter yourself. I came to practice and found you going round like a maniac. Kenley, you can fly.”

    “I know.”

    “You know?”

    “Yeah.” She shrugged. “I didn’t realize until I got to school and started watching Quidditch.”

    “Well, you’re brilliant.”

    “In my experience, boys follow a girl around and compliment her a lot when they want the girl to go out with them.” She raised an eyebrow, stepped around him, and headed toward the castle.

    He hurried to catch up. “Clearly you're harboring disappointment over my lack of romantic interest in you. It’s nothing personal. You’re actually quite attractive.”

    She laughed loudly and kept walking.

    “Look. If I wanted to ask you out, I’d have done it. You’d have promptly shot me down, and I would’ve had to come out here and fly way better than you for hours to shake the disappointment.”

    She smiled then—a real smile—and James felt warm all over.

    “Right, so we’re friends,” he said dramatically. “I’m an excellent friend—you can ask anyone.”

    “Good to know.”

    “And friends tell each other stuff.”

    “Yeah?”

    “So. For your first act as my friend, you have to tell me why no one knows you can fly like that.”

    “What makes you think no one knows?”

    “If Malfoy knew, you’d be on the team by morning. Slytherin will be lucky to win a single match this year, and he knows it.”

    She stopped suddenly and turned to him. “Please don’t say anything.”

    He stopped, too. Her hair was wet with sweat at the edges of her face and her cheeks were still rosy from exertion. James couldn’t help noticing how incredibly cute she looked. “About what? That you can fly?”

    She shifted her weight, and stared at her broom. “I feel bad not helping, but I just…” Kenley lifted her eyes to his, unable or unwilling to finish her thought.

    “I won’t say anything,” he promised.

    “Thanks.”

    They started walking again, quietly and companionably.

    Finally James spoke. “I’m actually glad you’re not playing. It would interfere with my plan to pound them into the ground two weeks from Saturday.”

    “Yeah?”

    He could see her thinking it over, wondering if he meant it.

    “With you as Chaser? Definitely.” He adopted a smug look. “Gryffindor would still win, of course, but we might have to break a sweat.”

    “Good I’m not playing, then,” she said playfully. “Wouldn’t want you to overexert yourself.”
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  3. #3
    'Til the end of the line Ravenclaw
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    Name: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor
    House: Ravenclaw
    Title: Out of Reach
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd/5th Years — Self-Injury if you squint a little
    Word Count: 484
    A/N: Yayyyy, Krumioneeeeee!



    He remembers her laugh and the way she turns her face away just so when she smiles. Such things haunt him when he is awake, but even more when he is asleep. There is nothing between them except for friendship and thousands of miles, and he knows this painfully well, but his unconscious shows slide after agonising slide of the life he can see himself living with Hermione Granger if she were to just ask.

    Annoyed that his thoughts have steered him in this direction yet again, especially in the midst of competition, Viktor Krum jerks his broom upward as he looks for the Snitch during a match between the Bulgarian national team and Romania’s. Instead of the deep, lucid brown of Hermione’s eyes, he fixates on the burnt yellows and oranges of the autumnal landscape; the crisp October wind bites his cheeks as he climbs in altitude. All in all, it is a glorious day to be on a broom and to simply be alive.

    Yet all that remains is the piercing longing in his gut for what he once had but never really had at all.

    The Snitch flits by as he blinks away his bout of unproductive whimsy. He hates that his livelihood, his very passion is shaped around capturing the elusive, yet the thing Viktor wants most is the one he will likely never catch. Even in the depths of the Black Lake just eight months ago, seeing her normally mobile features silent in the murky water didn’t deter him from his concentration. But then, there had been no finality. She wasn’t not his. Now she is not his, if someone could even claim possession of a girl like her.

    A glint of metal twinkles mere inches above the grass, and with a roar of frustration, Viktor angles his broom downward and careers toward the pitch. Faster and faster, his Firebolt propels him closer and closer to the ground, but he only has eyes for the Snitch. It isn’t getting away — not this time. Even when the emerald turf comes into alarmingly proximity, he does not peel back on his speed.

    Wings beat with persistence against the blades of grass, and the sound roars in his ears. Nearer and nearer still, Viktor extends his arm unopposed, the Romanian Seeker out of sight and out of mind, and feels his fingers clasp around the tiny ball just as the pitch abruptly ends his downward trajectory.



    He awakes to a painful cascade of sunshine, which tears him away from thinking about her yet again. But as he groggily remembers her laugh and the way she turns her face away when she smiles, his knuckles whiten with the voracity of his grip on the Snitch he had caught earlier. Every bone in his body aches, but the pain is quelled by the satisfaction that he still has this. And maybe, it is enough.
    Last edited by ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor; 10-15-2012 at 07:57 AM.
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  4. #4
    Ebil Lieutenant Ravenclaw
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    Name: Ebil Lieutenant With .38 Beta Pistol
    House: Ravenclaw
    Title: The Good Cousin
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th; mentions of sexual situations, mild profanity
    Word Count: 500
    A/N: This was badly cut. And it is terrible. But points are points Oh, and fair warning for my usual OTP*shenanigans -- I mean, there is a cousin pairing in this story, haha.

    “You haven’t scored a single bloody goal all week! How hard is it to just throw the damn thing? Pull yourself together or I’m kicking you off the team!” James Potter roars at his brother, who stares resolutely back, his green eyes so empty. They are the only two remaining on the Quidditch pitch, the other Gryffindors having headed back to the changing rooms a few minutes before.

    From her place in the stands, Rose doesn’t quite catch Albus’s mumbled reply, but she understands enough from James’s growl of frustration. And then, after one last glower at his younger brother, James wheels about, grabs his broom (which, Rose notes, he threw aside as soon as their disastrous practice finished) and leaves for the changing rooms.

    After a few moments of staring after James, Albus takes the Quaffle out of the crate at his feet, mounts his broom and flies a little unsteadily into the air, only stopping when he reaches the hoops. Rose watches his dark silhouette against the charcoal grey of the October sky. As the ball soars through the air, though, it misses the hoop completely, and Albus’s shoulders slump in defeat. When he lunges lower on his broom to retrieve the Quaffle, he finally notices Rose watching him, for he is now level with her and their eyes lock, for several seconds, before he loses balance and only just manages to stay on his broom.

    Something in Rose makes her get to her feet and walk down the steps to the pitch. She picks up the Quaffle from the ground, and by this point, Albus has dismounted his broom, his gaze very carefully fixed on her shoes.

    “Hey,” she says eventually.

    “H-hi.”

    They haven’t got past dull, monosyllabic greetings for months. Rose can’t help wincing, remembering that — that burning look in his eyes when he told her he loved her. He could not love her, not Rose, of all people. They were cousins, friends; they had been raised together, for Merlin’s sake! And yet, somehow, she had felt something towards him. It wasn’t love, though. They are only fifteen, after all; who loved anyone until they were far older?

    The silence tightens and tautens the air, becoming too much for Rose.

    “You’re flying... well.”

    “Liar,” Albus blurts out, and he looks worried for a moment, but without thinking, she touches his arm.

    I miss you, she wants to say, but she can’t. All she can say, while biting back tears, is: “Can we be friends again?”

    And Albus, like the good cousin he is, does not question her, mention the events of several months back or remind her that this is the first time since then that she has deigned to speak with him for longer than a few seconds.

    No, instead, Albus simply nods, and for the first time for a long time, his eyes fill with colour and he smiles gratefully. She thinks (hopes) that soon, things will be back to normal for them.
    Last edited by babewithbrains; 10-15-2012 at 07:01 PM. Reason: making title less crappy

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  5. #5
    Clone Club Hufflepuff
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    Name: Lily/Padfoot11333
    House: Hufflepufffffff
    Title: Quidditch Mornings
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th years--implication of slash
    Word Count: 463 according to word
    A/N: The pairing in this has absolutely nothing to do with biasing a certain barmaid.


    He doesn’t look forward to the first match of the season so much as he looks forward to the first practice. There are cool, crisp October mornings, cold, frosty October nights. The rest of the team hates it, but Oliver can’t get enough of it. He can’t help but feel twice as alive when he’s out on the field.

    Regular days are monotone. They pass by in a flurry of faded colours. Oliver barely notices them.

    Quidditch days are different. They don’t pass by, they fly by, in rainbows of colour. It’s why Oliver schedules the practices so early. He can’t bear to miss a moment of the only thing that makes him feel alive.

    The other players don’t feel the way he does. They fall asleep and groan at him when he wakes them up at dawn. They refuse to get out of bed. They joke around. And Oliver appreciates this, but he needs someone to feel the way he does. He needs someone to be alive with him.

    Cedric knows how to be alive.

    Sometimes, in the mornings, even before Oliver goes to wake up the rest of the team, he’ll come out to the Quidditch field. Cedric will be there.

    Later on, once they have established their meeting place, Cedric will wait for Oliver. The sun will be rising, and Cedric will watch, holding his broomstick with one hand, not letting it touch the ground.

    The cold October mornings are Oliver’s favourite part of the day. He thinks it is because of Quidditch--what else would it be? but soon he comes to wonder if it might be because of Cedric.

    They’ll fly around the pitch together, sometimes racing, sometimes practicing moves that only professional Quidditch players should be able to do. But most of the time, they will fly side by side, talking.

    Oliver would say that they were friends but that’s too small of a word to describe how he and Cedric have grown together. Too small of a word to describe the way that Oliver feels on Quidditch mornings, the way that he’s sure Cedric feels too.

    *

    It’s the first Quidditch morning of Oliver’s final year at Hogwarts. It’s bright, not dark like it will be in later months, and the grass has frosted over. Oliver is careful with his broomstick as he steps carefully through the cold, wet grass on the way to the Quidditch pitch.

    Cedric isn’t there yet.

    Oliver waits for a long time, too long, in some sort of vain hope that Cedric will come and see him.

    Oliver hopes that Cedric’s just forgotten that Quidditch starts today (but how could he forget?) but after the next weekend passes, and the next, he starts blindly wishing that Cedric will come.

    He doesn’t.



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    Last edited by Padfoot11333; 10-14-2012 at 10:41 PM.
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  6. #6
    Fifth Year Ravenclaw
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    Name:Theloonyhermione
    House:Raaaavvvennlawww!!!
    Title:The World Cup
    Ratings/Warnings:1st-2nd years, none
    Word Count: 379
    A/N: I will probably edit in later, when my beta has finished beta-ing, but I put this in here now just so I could be safe and not see the post tomorrow that said the thread was closed, and be like, "OMG I forgot!"

    After four years, Ginny still couldn’t get over it. They had lost. It was her first World Cup ever, and the Harpies had lost. It didn’t seem possible. She had been so sure they would win. They had made it into the finals. It was completely unbelievable that they had lost to Bulgaria. The prospect of losing hadn’t even occurred to Ginny. And she felt that it was all her fault that they had lost. She had only scored twice. Only twenty of the team’s points came from her. She was surprised she still had her career.

    “Don’t be so hard on yourself,” Harry had told her. But she couldn’t help thinking that it was her fault. And now, the season was about to start up again, so she had to be ready. They were going to win this year. It would happen. There was no doubt in her mind that they would win the Cup. So for those four years, she trained harder than she ever had before.

    The games that she had played at Hogwarts seemed so meaningless and small now, even with the house rivalries. The training, even with Angelina coaching, was nothing compared to this. She woke up every morning before the sun so that she could prepare herself. For a few hours she would just fly around, listening to the wind blow through her ears, getting used to the feel of her broom. When Harry woke up, they would play one-on-one for hours on end, not stopping until lunch.

    Oh, Harry, Ginny thought. He went through so much with her, kept going just for her even when he didn’t want to. He was the loudest cheerer in the crowds during her small matches; she could hear him over the roar of everything else. He played his hardest against her when they were practicing, always wanting her to be her best.

    October had come. Quidditch season was here again. She would reunite with her team and practice with them, working as hard as she could. She supported their team and made them work until they were stuck to their brooms, until their faces were bright red from the chilly autumn air blowing into their faces. They would win this year. Losing was not an option.
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  7. #7
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    Name: A slithering snake (Nagini Riddle)
    House: that red and gold lion thingamajig
    Title: Never Good Enough
    Word count: 313
    Ratings: For those who always feel second best (1-2 yrs)
    Warnings: resentment and jealousy
    A/N: After racking my brain for weeks, the first sentence finally came to me, and I had to write this. It may not be as good as some of the others I read, but I definitely feel for Albus in this piece.

    Albus stabbed his steak and kidney pie moodily. Despite his efforts to block out the loud chatter at the Gryffindor table, he could still hear his brother boasting loudly of the spectacular save he'd made the other day as keeper, complete with sound effects and swooping motions. And of course his fans fawned over him, grinning and laughing and praising him like he was some Quidditch god.

    Nobody fawned over Albus. He was just an ickle firstie who happened to be Sorted into Ravenclaw instead of the regular Potter hangout. He hadn't even gotten praise from a teacher for school work. He fumbled over every spell, every potion, every explanation. It frustrated him because he knew that he knew it all. But he lacked confidence in the classroom.

    Apparently he lacked it on a broom, too. Desperate to please his father and live up to the Potter name, he'd tried out for the team. Sure, everyone said first years never make it, but his dad had. Where was the harm? All he had to do was fly like he did every summer when he played with his family.

    Unfortunately, all his knowledge flew out the window. Dejected, he'd walked from the pitch all alone to the common room, having made a fool of himself in front of his own House.

    And now, on this October night only a week away from the first match, he watched others happily chatting about it with mixed feelings of jealousy, resentment, and failure. What good could he do if he couldn't be what his father was, like precious James over there?

    He shoved the pie away, no longer hungry. An empty hollowness thickened in his stomach. All he wanted was to be treated like James. But now, he knew he would never be able to live up to his father's name, and never get that star treatment.
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  8. #8
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
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    Name: Sapphire at Dawn
    House: Gryffinroar
    Title: Ghosts
    Word count: 348
    Ratings: 1st-2nd years
    Warnings: mentions of character death
    A/N: Thank you, Maple, for looking this over!

    Dennis is curled up in a seat in the Quidditch Stadium, his knees tucked under his chin, his arms wrapped around his legs. He’s shivering; there is a fierce October wind rippling around the stands and the flags above his head are flying proudly, whipped up by the breeze. He doesn’t know why he’s here; Colin was never really interested in Quidditch, though he cheered along with the rest of them at the right moments and commiserated with the team when they lost.

    No, for some reason, Dennis just feels right here. He feels calm, though he can’t quite seem to collect all of his thoughts; a common occurrence these days. No matter how hard he tries, he can never sort properly thought everything in his head. He just knows that here, he can remember Colin. Maybe it’s because it’s so high up here, so close to the unfathomably wide sky that is today blanketed in bleak, greyish clouds, and Dennis childishly associates the dead with being in the sky.

    Maybe because here, there are no ghosts. The castle is full of painful memories, all of them imagined because neither he nor Colin were at school last year. He hurries along the corridors now. He can’t bear to look closely at them, in his mind he wonders if this is where Colin finally fell. The fact that Colin might have died outside doesn’t occur to him, and so the Quidditch pitch feels untouched by the horrors of last year and the final battle that ended it all. Of course, it’s ridiculous because Dennis wasn’t there. For all he knows, there was a ferocious and deadly battle on the soft grass beneath the hoops that mirrored the benign ones that occur here in the air.

    Maybe he comes here because this is the last place he can imagine Colin being really happy.

    Dennis stands up and resolves that this year, he’ll try out for the house team. Maybe when he’s soaring high in the air beneath the clouds, he’ll be able to remember his brother without fear and violence.

    Sarah x


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  9. #9
    Seventh Year Gryffindor
    First Brush With A Dementor

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    Name: Karador
    House: Gryffindorrrrr
    Title: The Fallen
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st/2nd, violence
    Word Count: 499
    A/N: Thanks a million to Sarah (Sapphire at Dawn) for the incredibly speedy read-through!




    Oliver never saw the hex coming; he only felt it when it shot through his arm. Before he could do anything about it, he had lost hold of his broom and was falling, hitting the metal of the goal hoops on his way down.



    His hands are sweating, but there's no time to wipe them on his robes. The Chaser is speeding towards him, a determined look on his face. These are the Championship semifinals; this is the moment when he has to get it right. But before he can think, he's swerved to the right, where the Chaser is feigning. Oliver's move comes too early; it's the worst thing he could have done now. There's no way he can make it back to the left goal hoop, but the Quaffle is already in the air.



    The stadium had precautions installed. He slowed down before he hit the ground, and didn't break a single bone from the fall.



    Oliver looks in amazement at the Quaffle in his hands; the Chaser threw it right at him. The Snitch is caught. It's over. The Ballycastle Bats have won 260 - 250. Oliver has won. They're in the finals.



    His right arm would be ruined forever.



    It makes no sense, and it keeps bothering him for days. Of course he's happy to be in the finals. But why didn't the Chaser just throw the Quaffle at the left or even the middle hoop?

    Several nights later, he realises - or maybe he's just finally admitting to himself what he's suspected all along.

    The game was rigged.




    It was the height of his career, playing for the Ballycastle Bats, and the stadium had been packed. It was impossible to determine where the hex had come from.



    When he confronts the manager, it all unravels.



    The Healer told him that it was Dark Magic. Oliver could work to adapt to his new situation, but he would never regain full use of his arm.



    "They're offering you good money, Wood. You should take it."

    "I'm not going to be part of this," he says. "And I won't take their hush money. I'll finish this season with the team, and then I'll look around for a new contract."

    "Well then. I hear the Chudley Cannons are looking for a Keeper." The manager crumples the parchment he's been holding and throws it at Oliver's feet. "Just get out of here after the finale, and keep out of other people's business. There might not be a new contract for you to look for otherwise."

    Threats have never intimidated Oliver.




    When Oliver Wood fell from the sky in October 2005, it was no accident. He would have to accept that he would never fly again. But the one thing that he swore he would do was find out who had done this to him. It didn't matter what it would cost. He'd already lost everything.



    Oliver never sees the hex coming. He only feels it when it shoots through his arm.
    Last edited by Karaley Dargen; 10-15-2012 at 06:24 PM.
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  10. #10
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Thank you for the rush of last minute entries.

    Results soon (ish)

    Now, run along to part two of the October challenge and get your spooky on.




    Madam Carmerta
    Last edited by Equinox Chick; 10-15-2012 at 09:55 PM.
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