Hogwarts: A Theme Park? by Zen



Summary: "Bucking Broncos" and block-expelling walls wasn't really what Harry had signed up for. But with a pillow-fighting, Doxy Powder sneaking Hermione standing over him, he has no choice but to get the job done.
Rating: PG starstarstarstarstar
Categories: Reconstruction Challenge (2007-5)
Characters: None
Genres: None
Warnings: None
Challenges: None
Series: None
Published: 2007.10.05
Updated: 2007.10.25


Hogwarts: A Theme Park? by Zen
Chapter 3: Chapter 3
Author's Notes:

Chapter 3:

Homework was over, and the field work had just begun. Harry and his friends had moved into their old dormitories, as the builders had given them a heads-up that they might need to work day and night to get everything done before the school doors opened on the first of September. McGonagall was no longer gracing them with her presence; it seemed that she’d locked herself up in the headmistress’s office, no doubt sending out letters as Hermione had suggested. It felt strange, imaging her sitting there, because it always seemed as if that office will belong to Dumbledore, no matter who came and sat behind the desk.

Harry was woken up early in the morning by some one pulling the curtains around his four-poster bed. Rays of sunlight poured directly over his face, and he had to pull the bed sheets above his head to block them.

“Harry, wake up! We have work to do!” Hermione said, trying to pull the sheets out of his grip, but he just held on, so she went for Ron instead. “You too, Ron; get up!”

In the next few minutes, and after several cries of protest and flying pillows, Hermione had managed to get the two boys out of bed and changed into their regular clothes. She then dragged them down to the common room where they found Ginny sitting at one of the tables, which was laden with food, looking as if she might drop face-down into her cereal bowl at any moment.

“What did she do to get you up?” she said drowsily after Harry gave her a morning kiss. “Put Doxy Powder in your beds?”

“Erm…no; she attacked us with pillows,” Harry said, watching Hermione warily out of the corner of his eye. He sat down and picked a piece of toast off the plate. “So, what’s the schedule for today?”

Hermione looked pleased that they were finally getting to business, and didn’t notice that Ron was slumped over the table, sleeping. “Well, I’ve been up since a couple of hours ago, and I went down to check on how things were going,” she told them. “They’ve done a lot of repair work to the outside structure of the castle; there were rocks flying everywhere. It was really incredible to see how they would all fit into their proper places.”

Harry made a gesture that meant for her to skip over the details, and she gave him a scathing look.

“However, there’s this wall which just refuses to accept any new blocks,” she said. “Whenever they’d try to place a block in the gap, it’d just shoot back out at them. Three men have already been sent to St Mungo’s with broken noses. They tried permanent sticking charms, but I don’t think their charms were powerful enough.”

“I guess that’s where I come in then,” Harry said, before taking a bite out of his toast.
Hermione nodded. “There’s also a staircase that’s gone awry. Whenever someone tries to climb onto it, it simply throws them off,” she added.

“A Bucking Bronco, eh?”

She gave him a quick smile. “Sort of,” she agreed.

“Anything else?”

Her brow furrowed for a moment. “Well, there’s the thing with the Common Rooms,” she replied. “All the people in the portraits have abandoned their positions, and…erm, Peeves seems to have replaced them, and he won’t let anyone past.”

“Oh, hell.”

-

The first thing Harry did when he stepped out of the great oak doors was duck to avoid the zooming block of rock that was aiming for his face. However, Ron wasn’t so lucky; he was still feeling really sleepy, and his reflexes were still too slow to be able to steer him out of harm’s way. The next block hit him right in the stomach and he was hurled back against the wall.

“Ron, are you okay?” Hermione squealed, hurrying towards him.

Ron looked rather woozy. Under their concerned gazes, he took a couple of deep breaths and then clamped a hand to his mouth. The three of them scattered as he puked out the breakfast Hermione had fed him while half-asleep.

“Alright, hold up!” Harry called out, as two builders tried to fit two blocks into the expelling wall. Ron made a retching noise from behind him, and he added, “We really don’t need any more cases like that at the moment.”

The chief engineer, Cuthbert, hastened over towards him. He was a balding, pudgy little man with small watery eyes that seemed more watery at the moment. “Thank goodness you’re finally up, Mr. Potter,” he said, looking relieved. “We just can’t seem to fix some of these walls. It’s a disaster; you have to do something about it. We have a week’s deadline! I told the Minister we should start working on the castle right away, but he insisted we repair those darn floating bridges up in London first, and they just kept sinking, and…!”

Harry stared at the man in alarm. “Mr. Cuthbert, calm down. I’ll…I’ll fix this, okay?” he stammered. He pulled out his Elder wand. “Erm…I’ll see what I can do.”

Shooting a clueless glance back at Hermione and Ginny, he walked closer to the wall. He could sense all the builders’ gazes on him. He could tell they were expecting something extraordinary from him, and he was sure he would be a complete disappointment; after all, the only spell that fixed things was Reparo, and he didn't even perform it well. He rolled up his sleeves to buy himself some thinking time, and then he directed the wand at one block and slowly levitated it and directed it to the gap in the wall. It settled for a moment there, and then it shot back out at them.

“Sorry about that!” he said, hearing some angry curses from the builders. He turned to Mr. Cuthbert. “Maybe you should try to place it there, and I’ll place the sticking charm on it?”

“We already tried that,” the man said wearily. “How do you know that block won’t shoot back out when you attempt it?”

“Do you have any other idea?” Harry asked irritably, and Cuthbert shook his head. “Alright then, help me out.”

Everyone seemed to take cover as Harry and the chief engineer stepped forward again. Looking extremely cautious, Cuthbert sent the block zooming back to the gap, and once it settled in its position, Harry quickly muttered the incantation under his breath and aimed it at it. Everyone watched as the block wriggled a bit in its position, before finally falling still completely. While everyone whooped and cheered, Harry sighed in relief — one problem down.

Fixing those gaps took all morning and most of the afternoon, and by the time they were done, Harry’s throat was parched, and his wand arm was feeling a bit cramped. Looking pleased, Cuthbert led them inside the castle and towards the moving set of staircases. He pointed at an innocent-looking one.

“That one literally tried to kill me this morning,” he said vehemently. “It just won’t hold still. I don’t know if it’s been hexed on purpose or not, but it’s certainly not funny, and I can’t seem to figure out what’s wrong with it. I’m afraid I might do something that will cancel out the mobility charms altogether.”

“Right,” Harry said, nodding. “Hermione?”

“I really don’t know, Harry,” she replied, shaking her head. “Maybe it is like a Bucking Bronco, and you can’t cause it to stop throwing people off, until you win the ride.”

“You want me to ride on that thing?!” he said in shock.

She gave a helpless gesture. “You don’t expect me or Ginny to ride it, do you?” she demanded, and Ginny nodded her agreement. “And Ron’s in no state to do that, either.”

Harry looked around at Ron, who was looking pale and was using the wall as a support. He sighed. “Well, how do I go about clinging onto it while it tries to throw me off?” he said, feeling anxious. He had seen those things on TV before, during those precious few hours when the Dursleys went out and he got some alone time with the huge TV, and they had looked really dangerous, so what if it were a mechanical staircase?

“Well, you could use the Elder wand to create a strong binding charm, and attach yourself to the staircase,” Ginny suggested.

“Ooh, yes! That’s a good idea, Ginny!” Hermione said, grinning.

“You’re mental. Both of you.”

However mental he though they were, their ideas actually worked. After thrashing helplessly on the staircase for about an hour, Harry staggered down from the defeated staircase, tripping when he reached the bottom steps and falling flat on his face on the landing. This had to be one of the most horrible experiences of his life; being tied to a staircase which was totally out of control really wasn’t his idea of fun, and it didn’t help that the bloody staircase wasn’t an easy quitter. It had been shaking and moving so violently, he had felt like he was going to fly right off and crash through one of those painted windows on the wall.

“Harry, that was incredible!” Ginny exclaimed, as she helped him up to his feet along with Hermione. “I really didn’t think you could make it!”

“Me neither.”

Hermione beamed at him. “Well done, Harry!” she said, while Ron gave him a feeble thumbs-up. “You’ve got two problems sorted out in one day! That’s excellent!”

Cuthbert looked just as pleased, too — only after he’d personally examined the staircase, that is. “Ah, Mr. Potter, I’m so grateful to you,” he said, smiling. “Now, we still have the problem concerning the poltergeist...”

Harry stared at him. “You have to be joking!!” he cried out. “Cut me some slack, Mr. Cuthbert! I just finished wrestling a block-expelling wall and a deranged staircase! If I laid eyes on Peeves right now I’d probably murder him!”

“Please do.”

Harry looked exasperated. “Dinner. Bed. No more work,” he stated, and when they looked ready to protest, he said sharply, “Else I’ll snap the wand in two. I will do it. Don’t test me.”

Cuthbert looked intimidated. “Y-yes, sir,” he said in a small voice.

"Good. Now where's the custard?"



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