Two weeks ago I went to the Tournament in Hogsmeade, like everyone else who was there. There were a lot of people there! And that means that we should all know what happened, but people at Owl Club wanted someone to write a story about it and so I said yes and here it is. Because there were a lot of people who were not there. Anyway, it was a very exciting day! Lots of stuff happened. There was dueling, and fighting, and explosions, and even someone almost fooling the adults!
The Tournament Field
The Dueling Tournament was held at the circus site. This is in the Forbidden Forest. The Forest is very exciting. Of course, we had to stay right on the path. We could not go into the Forest. Anyway, it was very dark in the Forest, and even at the tournament site, even though that was a big clearing. But that is because it is a magic forest. Which means that the sky can be dark even if the sky is not dark in Hogsmeade. So remember that the next time you want to go into the Forbidden Forest. Past the Trolls. And the werewolves. And the giant spiders. The site was like a park. There was a carousel there, but there will be more on that in a little while. People rode the carousel too, but I did not ride it. Maybe I should have ridden it, but after what happened, I did not feel like riding a carousel. In the middle of the clearing, there were three big flat areas. They were round and higher than the ground. They were different colours. These are the places where the dueling people were supposed to do their duels.
The Dueling People, and the Almost Dueling Person (People)
There were a lot of dueling people there. There was a French man, and his name was Sebastien Roumieux. And there was another man there, and his name was Lukka Rookswood. And there was a woman named Harper Nicholson who was not wearing a lot, and then another woman named Bonnie Nishi who was not wearing a lot. And then there was a different woman named Crush who was not wearing a lot. I think it is very strange for a woman to be called Crush. Maybe her parents did not like her very much. Anyway, there was also Eilidh Dashwood, our own Sixth Year Gryffindor! She was very brave to try to duel adults.
So the dueling people came in all sorts of shapes and sizes, but I think there were only just the six people. They had to pay money to enter the tournament, and there was a desk to do that. That’s where the official people were. And that is where a strange man calling himself “Jester Cobberg” was trying to enter the tournament. He was very tall, and wore a very long coat, and a tall hat, and a very large mustache. But his arms were very very short. And when he tried to get his money he could not reach it. And he fell over, but it was not a man at all! It was two Gryffindor First-Years. Professor Vikander was there, and he grabbed each of them and talked to them for a little while. Anyway, they did not get in the tournament. Maybe that is good, because the hexes in the tournament were very dangerous.
So there were six dueling people, and three dueling spots. So there were three duels. These were the duels:
Sebastien Roumieux (the French guy) and Lukka Rookswood (the other guy)
Eilidh Dashwood (our own Sixth-Year Gryffindor! yay!) and Harper Nicholson (a lady not wearing very much)
Bonnie Nishi (another woman not wearing very much) and Crush (different woman who was not wearing very much)
The guys’ duel
The French guy and the other guy. I kind of missed a lot of it because that duel was far from me, and because I was talking to a part-Goblin lady. She was a dueling person too, but she was not able to get into the Tournament. That is too bad, because I would like to have seen her duel someone. Anyway, the French guy, that’s the Roumieux guy, beat the other guy, whose name is Rookswood. They were both very friendly and polite to each other. But the French guy beat the other guy. The French guy put a dancing jinx on the other guy, and then made a bunch of birds to catch one of the other guy’s jinxes, and then sent them at the other guy. Anyway, the birds were really angry. Or looked it. And they got the other guy and the French guy won.
Eilidh dueled an old lady called Harper. Eilidh made a bunch of butterflies that did not seem to do anything, but she was wearing a flower crown and it disappeared. I do not know why she made the butterflies. But then the Harper lady made a paper flower above Eilidh’s head and it hit her. It did not do anything. But I suppose that was a point. And then Eilidh cast a spell that did not do anything, and then the Harper lady made Eilidh’s flower wreath come back, but it was on her own head now. But that was a point for Eilidh, and I am confused why. But this is why I do not try to enter professional duels, unlike the two Firsties who tried to as “Jester Cobberg.” Then Eilidh cast another spell, but the Harper lady made a bunch of butterflies and I suppose they stopped Eilidh’s jinx and some of them looked like they had leeks in their heads! The Harper lady turned her wand into a whip and tried to hit Eilidh with it, but Eilidh made a very big flower that got hit instead. Then she tried another jinx, but the Harper lady just put up a shield. Actually, she did that a couple times. And then she lit Eilidh’s boots on fire and that was the end of the duel. It was kind of pretty, except that all the pretty things kept getting messed up by jinxes and hexes. I do not think the Harper lady took it that seriously, because she kept looking at the Crush lady and talking about her duel.
The bloody duel
The last duel was between the Crush lady and the Bonnie lady. They are both professional dueling people. It was not like the other duels. The other duels were polite. There were lots of butterflies and flowers and things like that. This duel had a lot of blood and broken bones. Maybe that is because of Crush. Crush is very loud. And she likes to use a lot of words that if I used them, my nain and my taid would probably turn me over their knees. I am very small so it is still not very hard for them to do that. So I run a lot sometimes, and that is just a problem with being my size. And Crush said a lot of them. I think she said them all the time. I wonder if she remembered that this was a school event. Probably not, because she kept using those words when she came to talk to us the following week. But I am getting ahead of myself.
Anyway, she said a lot of these words to Bonnie, but Bonnie did not seem to mind. Bonnie just kept casting spells. And the first one turned Crush’s foot in an unnatural angle and there was a loud CRUNCH. And Crush screamed very loudly. She was very mad. And she said more of those words. And then she tried to make Bonnie explode. But Bonnie did something and suddenly Crush had to put a shield up and there was a big explosion on that. But that just made Crush even more mad. So Crush did another hex and suddenly Bonnie’s cheek was gashed open! There was blood everywhere! Bonnie made a whip and tried to beat Crush with it, but Crush cut the whip too. I think maybe by now Bonnie was mad too. But then Crush tried another spell and nothing happened she got frustrated. So Bonnie made a bunch of bits of something and sent it at Crush. Crush tried to blast them away with water, but she missed and so they hit her in the face and she got really really mad.
A Fight Breaks out at the Dueling Tournament
That should have been the end of the duel, because Bonnie had three points, and Crush only had one. The referee even said so. But maybe nobody told Crush, because she did another spell and all the stuff that Bonnie had stuck in her face flew out of her face and at Bonnie. But Bonnie did a spell and the pieces flew back at Crush! Only now they were turning into something very long. I think maybe they were going to try to tie her up. But Crush was fast. She blew them up with a big explosion. And then the Harper lady tried to turn Crush into an animal. This is a very bad spell. There was a tournament in Little Lamplight last summer, and our Head Boy, Eric Hyland, turned Crush into a turtle. It is how he won his duel with her. I think she did not like that. And this time Crush was ready for it, and she cast a shield and the spell bounced off. Crush said a bunch more of those words. I think she really forgot there were a bunch of kids there. Anyway, she cast a hex on the Harper lady, and suddenly the Harper lady was trying to hit Bonnie.
Remember the carousel? Well, Bonnie did not like the two other ladies attacking her, and she cast a big giant explosion hex. But it got turned away, and it hit the carousel. It blew the carousel up into little pieces. It was very very loud. And finally the adults there — the Professors, and even some of the Prefects — started casting shield spells to protect everyone from the flying bits of carousel. The Tournament people then cast hexes on all the fighting ladies, making them freeze.
And that was the end of the Tournament. They took Crush away, and Bonnie and Harper were let go from the hexes, including from the one Crush put on Harper to go after Bonnie. And they were all disqualified and the French guy was declared the winner of the Tournament. I had to look up the word ‘disqualified.’ The Welsh word is ‘anghymhwyswyd.’ Anyway,.I think it was unfair because Bonnie was just defending herself from Crush and Crush should not have been able to disqualify Bonnie just for defending herself. Anyway, they gave the French guy the prize and he was surprised, I think. It was not a happy end. But the Tournament people seemed very happy and were talking about raising prices for something. I thought that was strange.
The Duelists Visit Hogwarts
A week later, we had Interhouse Dueling. Many of the dueling people who had been at the Tournament came to watch us and to talk to us. So I asked them a lot of questions. And so did Jericho. I will give my questions and the answers now, like I do in my interviews. The Crush lady kept saying words she should not say in front of kids. I will not put those words in here. The dueling people there were Crush, Bonnie, Harper and the French guy from the Tournament, and a lady named Tatiana Something Really Long. I am sorry, I could not write it all down.
Do you like being dueling people? Is this what you do as a job?
Bonnie said she really likes dueling, and that it is her job. She duels for a team called the Mandrakes. I would say that Crush should duel for them because of what comes out of her mouth, but she duels for a team called the Boggarts and I think that is okay too because she is like a pink-haired Boggart. Anyway, Bonnie says they do lots of practices with the Mandrakes, and it is really intense.
Crush loves dueling. She says the Boggarts are her family. I suppose it makes sense. She is scary, and probably the other Boggarts dueling people are scary too.
The French guy said that sometimes dueling is rough. I suppose that makes sense with all the broken ankles and explosions and turning people into animals and everything. But he said it is also fun and creative, and that is what he likes about it. You get to learn lots of interesting spells. And he said you have to think on your feet a lot. Maybe that is why they keep breaking ankles.
Do you like each other?
Bonnie said she does not want to be friends with other duelists because then it is easier to break their ankles. Tatiana said she can be friends with people and still break their ankles. I think there is a lot of breaking ankles in dueling. Anyone who wants to do dueling for a job should get good hiking boots because they are good to help with ankles. But Bonnie also said that she can be friends with people. She said it is fun to just blow stuff up. I suppose that means ankles too. And she said that they are encouraged to be loud, so blowing up a carousel or two is good sometimes for the show. It is good because then people shout. She is right. There was a lot of shouting at the Tournament. I do not know if it was good.
Crush said she likes some of her opponents too, especially the ones with <bad word> spines and will fight her proper. But she said to <bad verb> Harper Nicholson who is a <bad word>.
Have you ever made a big mistake at a duel and wished you did something else?
This was a question from Jericho. Only they used different words and I forget what the words were. But I think this is what was meant.
Tatiana said there was a duel with Bonnie last summer at Little Lamplight where she used one spell instead of another. They were weird magic words and I did not get them down.
The French guy said he never worried about the duels. Anyway, not yet.
Crush said she has a spells he likes that makes your teeth grow very long. Anyway, she tried that in one of her first duels, but her opponent had a fake arm and broke all her teeth. It takes a long time to regrow teeth. I do not want to have to regrow my teeth. That sounds nasty.
Was it good that all those people were disqualified from the Tournament? Is it good like the exploding carousels?
Tatiana said she never got to duel at the Tournament. She seemed sad.
Crush said she did not understand me, because I did not know the English word and I used the Welsh word and nobody knows what that is except for Aures who was there. Anyway, she guessed I meant the disqualifications, and she said yes because it was a ‘bloody good show.’ I suppose that is true because there was a lot of blood. And she said people were talking about it and that is good.
Bonnie actually agreed with Crush, which really surprised me. And she said the open Tournaments did not matter for ranking anyway, so it is okay and no reason to worry. I am not sure what that means. I looked up the words, but it does not make a lot of sense. I think it is an English thing.
Tatiana agreed that the open Tournaments did not matter and that she has never lost sleep over them.
Is it normal for dueling people to be crude?
Aures asked this question. I had to look that word up, because I thought at first it maybe was ‘rude.’ Or maybe ‘crud.’ I did not think that Aures meant to say the dueling people were crud, though. And she asked if dueling people could be girly, or if it was a club for tough girls only. Maybe something like Owl Club but with lots of broken ankles.
Bonnie said yes, and Aures should join the Banshees. Because they have that <word I did not understand>. She did not become a Banshee because they wear black lace and she does not like that.
Tatiana said she could be brutal but did not like to be crude. She said you can be tough but still be lady.
The French guy said that as long as you are fit and you have good spellwork, you can be whatever you want to be as a dueling person. They are not all the same, and he said that is good.
Maybe it is good for the same reason that explosions are good and even big fights that break out at Open Tournaments that do not matter for ranking is good. It is for a good show. I suppose that is what a dueling Tournament is, after all. It is a show, and the dueling people are all characters. Some of them like each other, some of them hate each other, some of them are nice, some of them are very scary and use bad words all the time and have pink hair.
But it is all part of the show. And that is why a fight broke out at the duel in Hogsmeade.