Quite a wild ride, this magical creature hunt has been!
Well, the dust has settled, the beasts are accounted for, and the judging is complete. Congratulations to all contributors, and especially those who produced our winning stories:
Let us all offer a round of applause for our wonderful judges: AS, KH, MG, AM1 & AM2!
I will mention, for interest's sake, that for every authour who wrote a second story for this challenge, it was the second story that fared best in judging. Fascinating. In light of this, from heretoforward, I am happy to now make it standard policy that writers may contribute more than one story to a challenge.
This makes a nice seque to announcing our voter-selected topic for Challenge 2018-1:
By accident, Harry and Ginny stumble upon a hidden Portkey and are swept away. What happens next, and how do they get back?
Awards will be made for Most Adventuresome, Most Romantic, Best Overall, and People's Choice. Please stay tuned for a followup announcement in about a week, specifying rules for Challenge 2018-1, and opening the voting process on possible topics for Challenge 2018-2.