Chapter 1: new rules passed
Durmstrang… one of the only Dark Arts Wizarding schools in the world. Few are accepted under the strict rules that you must be intelligent, a pureblooded wizard, and a boy. It is a school that is hidden from the eyes of both muggles and wizards alike. Only those deep within the Ministry of Magic, and those who attend the school themselves, know how to reach it…
Viktor Krum lay with his eyes closed across a couch covered in wolf pelts and elk skins. The beautiful sound of silence echoed through his spacious room as he sighed in relief.
The last quidditch match against Ireland had been straining on his already tired limbs. Being the world greatest seeker in the Wizarding world quickly became a royal pain in the ass, especially the constant practicing he was forced to attend over the summer by his father.
A small smile slipped across his slender lips…no more quidditch. Not for nine months at least. For at that very moment he was on his way to the Durmstrang Institute, his school…his sanctuary. Nine straight months of seclusion in the mountains of western Germany with friends and peers. The best parts was…no fan girls for thousands of miles to scream his name and beg for his autograph.
He opened his eyes as he felt the giant ship lurch around him.
"We must be surfacing," he mumbled to himself, "I best get into uniform."
Although he had been on this ship many times before, he still marveled at it's brilliance. They would board the ship at the coast of Germany and then the ship would dive deep into the ocean. Once they reached two thousand feet below sea level, the ship would travel through an underwater tunnel that traveled under the continent of Germany itself. Magic made it so the cavern would remain undetectable to muggles. Once the ship had made it to Durmstrang it would surface in a huge lake that neighbored the ancient castle.
Finding his wand that was ten and a quarter inches long and made with hornbeam and dragon heartstring, he merely waved it and his casual denim jeans and jacket to change into his school uniform. It was a pair of brown pants and a form fitting brown shirt. Also appearing beside him was a heavy brown jacket lined in fur with a matching hat.
Rubbing his tired eyes, Viktor walked across the cherry wood floor the small golden sink on the other side of the room. Calloused hands turned the taps on a gathered water in his palms, splashing the cold water on his face. Taking a brown towel with the Durmstrang emblem on it, Viktor dried his face and then looked in the mirror.
Deep brown eyes stared back at him as he ran a hand along his stubble chin. He was handsome, he had to admit. Broad shoulders accented his strong, defined chin and jaw line. His dark hair was shaved extremely short and his skin was clear and toned. Years of playing quidditch had toned his body very well, and he flexed his arm muscles in appreciation.
Suddenly the deep sound of a bell ringing from above him, signaled that they had surfaced, and were docking.
This would be Viktor's seventh year at Durmstrang and he just turned eighteen. Unlike Hogwarts, who started their students at eleven, Durmstrang started at twelve and went until the student were eighteen. Most, like Viktor, had taken private classes when they were younger to put them at a more advanced level then other beginner wizards.
There was a rough knock at the door and a boy about Viktor's age entered before Viktor could respond.
"Alai," Viktor smiled broadly.
Alai and Viktor had been close friends since their first year at Durmstrang. Most of his peers only liked him because of his fame as a seeker, but Alai actually knew him, and Viktor told him things that his own father didn't know.
Alai smiled back at Viktor, his dark brown hair falling to his shoulders in waves and his almost black eyes looked excited. Alai's dark skin was strained against the huge smiled on his face.
"Are you not coming?" Alai asked, "The ship docked almost twenty minutes ago, I've been waiting for you to come out."
Viktor nodded, "I'm coming."
His trunk filled with his possessions had already vanished and been shipped to his room in the school so he followed Alai down the narrow halls.
As they walked, Viktor glanced at his friend and was surprised to find that a broad smile was still displayed on his face.
"Why are you smiling?" Viktor asked softly.
Alai glanced at him, "I was coming to find you when I over heard professor Karkaroff tell professor Dante that he was going to make a special announcement before the feast today."
"What kind of announcement?" Viktor asked, now interested. He knew Karkaroff well, and when he took the time to make an announcement to the entire student body, it had to be important…
Alai shrugged, "I don't know, I didn't stick around."
Viktor merely nodded as the pair opened the inner door and walked onto the vast deck of the ship.
A thick fog hung in the air and Viktor couldn't see past a few feet in front of him. Following Alai closely, he followed him off the plank and toward the school. As they got closer, the fog began to clear and the castle came into view.
It was magnificent, not as nice as the Hogwarts castle, but it was home to him. It was a gothic looking place. The walls of the castle were constructed with blackened stone and the walls stretched hundreds of feet up. Looming turrets popped up here and there, each displaying the Durmstrang flag that waved in the cold wind. Through the very few windows in the castle, dim lights and haunting shadows could be seen lingering just out of sight. A small path weaved through huge jagged rocks up to the huge oak doors that were carved with demons and dragons.
There was maybe eighty students in total at the school, all of which were talking amongst each other as they walked through the doors.
As Viktor entered the grand hall where they were to gather, he breathed in the comforting scent of cherry wood, candle smoke, and parchment.
The grand hall was dimly lit by candles lining the walls as an enchanted ceiling showed a pitch black sky dotted with stars and a crescent moon. Carpets of different types of animal fur covered the floor between the tables. There were three huge tables stretching from one end of the room to the other, and over one hundred armchairs were lined up against it.
Viktor paused momentarily in the doorway…
Why were there three tables? They had only ever needed two…
And by glancing around the room, there were no more boys then there was last year.
Viktor was not the only one confused, as boys sat down in chairs they began questioning each other.
He glanced up at the teachers table and didn't see anything different there. Nine teachers sat in their regular spots, Karkaroff in the center.
"Maybe we are hosting another school, like when you went to Hogwarts last year," Alai said from beside Viktor.
He nodded. A few select students had gone off to Hogwarts to have the chance to compete in the Triwizard Tournament. Alai had not been selected but Viktor had gone, and been chosen to compete in the games. He hadn't won, and was glad he wasn't the one to find the cup in the maze during the final task. Cedric Diggory, one of the two champions from Hogwarts had been killed, supposedly by the dark Lord Voldemort. A pretty girl, Fleur Delacour, had been chosen from the Beauxbatons school.
But Viktor had not gone home empty handed…no…he had met her…the girl her would never forget.
He had asked her to the Yule Ball, and found himself growing very attracted to the younger girl. She was very intelligent, and fiery when she fought with her friend Ron Weasley. After they had separated, Viktor continued to write to Hermione every week.
He was brought back to reality when Karkaroff stood up from his chair and raised his hand, demanding silence. Viktor quickly found an empty chair and Alai sat beside him.
Karkaroff's face was as stern as ever as his piercing black eyes scanned the room. His black hair was neatly brushed and in a loose ponytail at the nape of his neck. His long slender fingers which were covered in rings twisted his goatee. Thin lips opened into a twisted smile as her bared his brown and crooked teeth.
"Welcome," he began, his voice echoing through the room, "By now you all will be wondering why exactly there are more chairs then there are men. The answer is simple…we have new students."
A wave of whispers went throughout the hall as Karkaroff raised his hand once again.
"You also may be wondering if we will be hosting another school," he sighed, "This is not true. The students that will be joining us soon will be permanent residents of Durmstrang and fellow students of yours."
Viktor's stomach turned uneasily…something wasn't right. Why did Karkaroff look so…angry?
"Before I introduce our new students, I suppose I will tell you the situation of their appearance. Recently, I received a letter from Cornelius Fudge, the minister of magic. I was told that there is a shortage of room in schools and we were the only place that had enough room to accommodate the extras…"
Karkaroff trailed off as he clenched his hands into fists, his face growing tense with rage.
Taking a breath, he began again, "Ever since this school has opened, we have lived by simple rules of acceptance. You must be intelligent…you must be a pureblooded wizard…and you must be a boy."
A few boy yelled their agreement, but Viktor sat in silence. Something big was about to happen…this was just the silence before the storm…
"And after centuries of running this school that way, the ministry has gone against those rules," Karkaroff yelled.
Now everyone was talking, whispering back and forth, trying to make sense of it all.
"What do you suppose he means?" Alai nudged Viktor in the ribs gently.
Viktor glanced at him, shrugging slightly.
"As of today, Durmstrang will be accommodating not only purebloods, but half-bloods…and muggle born mud bloods…" Karkaroff spat.
Viktor was slightly taken aback by the use of the extremely politically incorrect word. Normally he would have shouted in agreement…but after meeting Hermione, who was herself muggle born, he had different thoughts.
Most of the boys were already in an outrage, but Karkaroff waved his hand. Everyone went dead silent, dreading any more bad news…
"And if that wasn't enough…" Karkaroff began venomously, "The Ministry of Magic has demanded that we now except…girls."
That one word put everyone over the edge, even Viktor stood up from his seat and yelled his objection.
Never…never had a girl ever set foot in Durmstrang! This was his sanctuary! His home away from the stresses of fame, and now they were bringing in the very things that made him want to rip his very eardrums out!
"What!" Alai stood up as well, yelling loudly, "This can't be right! Girls? It's an abomination against tradition!"
The whole student body screamed at Karkaroff who was sitting in his chair again, his head in his hands.
"Its bad enough that they are half-bloods and mud bloods! But girls?"
"We won't allow it!"
Various things were being yelled out as things quickly escalated.
Suddenly Karkaroff raised his head.
"SILENCE!" his voice boomed.
Everyone went silent and sat back in their seats, but Viktor stayed standing, still in shock. Alai grabbed his sleeve and yanked him back in his seat before Karkaroff could see him.
Standing again, Karkaroff cleared his voice, "Now I know that none of you are happy about this. Trust me when I tell you that no one is as furious as I am. But we do not have a choice in this. The Ministry has ordered that we accommodate them and give them equal rights as boys, and that is what we shall do."
Everyone just sat there in their own fury, waiting for him to speak again.
"I ask you to show some restraint when they enter the hall," Karkaroff said simply.
And with a wave of his hand the doors opened.
Twenty girls walked in, each looking more nervous then the next. They wore brown pleated skirts with white stockings and brown form fitting long sleeve shirts. Some girls wore long jackets similar to what the men had, but in a style for women. Most of them had the hung over their arm.
No one spoke as the quickly sat down at the empty table at the far end of the hall.
Viktor noticed that most of them would be in their fifth or sixth year. A few of them looked like they would be in their seventh, and he couldn't find any that looked young enough to be first or second years.
Once the girls had been seated they sat in silence, looking awkwardly at each other. There was no doubt in Viktor's mind that they hadn't heard the objections of their presences.
"Things are going to change from this point on," Karkaroff spoke after a while, "Instead of the two separate house, there will be three. The first two houses, Batrix and Fangir will remain the same as always, but we will be adding an extra house, Lunain. This house will be for our new…students. I understand that the numbers are unequal, but we shall have to make due. Also, our new additions will be added into your regular classes and I expect you to…accommodate them as any other."
A few soft snickers could be heard from the boys side of the room and Viktor frowned. He knew Karkaroff long enough to know that there was a hidden message behind his words…he would turn a blind eye to how the girls were treated…
"Before we begin the feast, I have one last issue to address," he said, "In the issue of the two traditional head boys. That will now be changed to one head boy, and one head girl. Elections will begin in one week, so I would begin thinking about a suitable candidate."
Karkaroff's eyes wandered to meet Viktor's. He had always been a favorite student of Karkaroff's ever since his fame in quidditch. Sometimes it was nice to have immunity above most things, but most of the time Viktor felt used and smothered in his headmaster's presence.
Karkaroff clapped his hands and huge platters of food appeared on the tables. There was everything from wild boar, ten different kinds of soups, breads by the hundreds, and vegetables from all over the world. A small rumble in Viktor's stomach reminded him that he hadn't eaten a thing since this morning, and he didn't hesitate to dig in.
As he began to eat, Viktor's eyes wandered over to the far end of the hall where the girls sat.
They were talking and laughing as they ate. They appeared to have made themselves at home already.
"There's some pretty fine looking girls eh Krum?" a boy named Justin smirked at him.
He and Justin were in the same house, Batrix. Justin was, in simple terms, girl crazed. That was all he ever talked about, thought about, dreamed about. He was a good looking boy, with short blonde hair and startling blue eyes.
Viktor shrugged and Justin laughed.
"Always the silent type," he turned and pointed across the hall, "take a look at her, quite a looker hey?"
Viktor looked where he was pointing. He was pointing at a blonde girl. Her hair fell past her shoulders and her honey brown eyes shone with excitement as she whispered back and forth with another the girl. The girl beside her had short brown hair that went just past her ears, and a handful of freckles dusted her nose and cheeks.
Viktor shrugged again.
"Come on man!" Justin said, "You can't tell me that the blonde isn't hot."
"Leave him alone Justin," Alai laughed from the other side of Viktor, "Let the man eat."
But Justin ignored him and began tapping furiously on Viktor's shoulder.
"Krum! Krum, take a look at her! She's a winner right there," he whispered harshly.
Rolling his eyes, Viktor looked to where he was pointing and saw a girl with curly brown hair that went to her shoulders. She had deep hazel eyes that flashed a dull orange every so often and she was talking with a Chinese girl.
Viktor felt his chest tighten…she reminded him of Hermione.
Alai looked as well, "You mean the girl with the curly hair?"
Justin shook his head, "She's cute, don't get me wrong, I'd-"
"Don't finish that sentence," Alai punched him over Viktor's shoulder.
Justin smirked, "Fine then. But no, I mean the girl beside her."
Viktor looked up again.
The girl he was pointing to was looking around the hall absently, not talking with anyone. She had long deep brown hair that fell past her shoulders in soft waves and her skin was pale and creamy. Her side parted bangs fell into her eye, and she pushed it aside with slender, long fingers. On her middle finger on her left hand was a silver ring with a crescent moon and a star.
As she looked across the hall, her eye's met Viktor's, and he paused in eating his food.
She had the most stunning green eyes he had ever seen.
They held each other's gaze for a moment, neither moved, neither smiled or made any sign that they were actually looking at each other.
Then the curly haired girl tapped the girl's shoulder and she looked away.
"So?" Justin asked, "What you think."
"She kind of gives me the creeps, did you see how she was watching everyone?" Alai said softly.
"I wasn't asking you," Justin punched him back, "So Krum? Doable?"
Krum looked away from the girl and at Justin…
He merely shrugged.