Disclaimers:  I do not own either Gundam Wing or Harry Potter.  I am making no money with this.  This story is purely for
entertainment purposes only.

Notes:  Quidditch tryouts for Gryffindor, and a problem.

Soldiers of Sorcery

Part Twenty-Three

It was a perfect day for the tryouts.  The temperature was pleasant, the sky was clear, and there was very little wind to interfere
with their flying.  If Wufei didn’t know any better, he would have thought that the teachers had cast a spell just so that the day
would be perfect.

Wufei’s father had often told him of this game . . . Quidditch . . . and he was quite eager to try out for the Gryffindor team.  
Professor Dumbledore had said that tryouts were open for everyone above the age of twelve, which left Wufei and the others
eligible to attempt.  Around him, as he walked toward where a large group of students were gathered, were Duo, Trowa, and
Quatre.  It was a shame that Heero had been unable to attend, Wufei regretted his absence.

“You sure this is an easy game?”  Duo asked, nervously looking around.

Wufei nodded.  “Yes, it is no more difficult than most sports.  Think of it as basketball while riding a broomstick and evading
several flying projectiles.”  Wufei answered.  For the past few days he had been instructing the three of them on basic Quidditch
rules, at least the ones that he remembered his father teaching him about.

Duo grinned, turning to face Wufei as they stopped walking.  They had reached where all of the other students were waiting.  
“Okay.  I trust ya, Fei.”  He nodded.

Wufei would have reprimanded Duo for the use of that nickname, had Duo not grabbed his shoulder and laughed out loud while
pointing emphatically.  Wufei turned, confused by his friend’s excited gesture, only to gape as Heero Yuy limped over to them.

“You are trying out for the team, Yuy?”  Wufei asked, quite surprised to see the Japanese youth here.  

While Heero was better off than he had been before, he was still injured.  Most obvious of his injuries, were the multiple bruises
and healing cuts on his face.  Madam Pomfrey had only healed the most serious of injuries, allowing the other, mostly superficial
wounds, to heal on their own . . . or so Wufei had learned upon his last visit to the Hospital Wing that afternoon.  Perhaps Wufei
shouldn’t have mentioned that tryouts for the team were today.

The potions that Madam Pomfrey had given to Heero had taken care of his broken limbs, his dislocated shoulder, his damaged
ribs, and the internal injuries.  Which meant that Heero was left with a sprained ankle and numerous contusions, scrapes, and
cuts of various lengths widths and depths.  He looked terrible, but he was much better than he had been the first time the four of
them had seen him after the accident.

“Yes, I will be trying out for the team.”  Heero said stiffly, his jaw not quite healed completely yet.  He avoided opening his jaw
when possible . . . it probably hurt quite a bit.  It would have been worse had Madam Pomfrey not fixed the break in his

“Are you sure that’s a good idea, Heero?”  Quatre asked, concern obvious in his voice.

“Yeah, you look like shit, Heero.”  Duo announced quite frankly.

Heero sighed.  “I don’t see any reason for me not to attempt to tryout.  If I do not play well, then I just do not play well.  
Professor Dumbledore has assured me that I am safe to fly.  I asked him shortly after he removed the charm.  He said that it is a
basic skill, and that I would have no trouble mastering it now that the charm has been removed from me.”

“And Madam Pomfrey is fine with this?”  Trowa inquired, one eyebrow raised.

“Yes, but I was only able to persuade her to allow it by agreeing to return after tryouts are over and staying there until she is
satisfied that I am well.”  Heero said.

“Heero Yuy!  What do you think you are doing here?”  The angry voice of Madam Hooch exclaimed, her hand grasping Heero’s
shoulder and forcing him to turn.  Wufei simply watched as the teacher began berating Heero for his presence on the field,
telling him to get back to the Hospital Wing, that she didn’t want him to endanger his health by participating in the Gryffindor

“Madam Hooch, I have been given permission to be here by both Professor Dumbledore and Madam Pomfrey.”  Heero said

Madam Hooch hardly seemed convinced.  “Judging from your last performance on the broom, I should have you removed from
the field.  However, Professor Dumbledore has spoken with me about your previous . . . problem . . . and I am willing to take
the chance to allow you on one of my broomsticks again.  You better not break this one, Mr. Yuy.”  Madam Hooch said, a trace
of a smile curling the corners of her mouth and betraying words that would have sounded harsh without it.

“Thank you.”  Heero said, nodding slightly.

“If you should injure yourself, I expect you to land your broom immediately and inform me.  If you should lose control of your
broom again, just let yourself fall.”  With that said she walked away, heading to stand in front of the entire group.

“I hope to see you all make the team.”  Wufei said quietly, as they awaited whatever speech Madam Hooch was about to say.

“All right, students!”  Madam Hooch called out loudly, gaining everyone’s attention.  “You are here to try out for this year’s
Quidditch team.  I will be acting as referee to see to it that there are no fights or other such nonsense.  Now, there are five
positions available this year, so many of you will not make the team.  However, if you play well enough you could be named as a
second, in the event of injury or illness of one of the members of the team.”  She looked around at the group briefly.  “I’ll leave
the team’s captain, Jeremy Piven to explain the basic rules and what he expects you to do this afternoon.”

Madam Hooch stepped aside and a tall dark-haired boy took her place.  He smiled brightly, going over the rules that Wufei
already knew.  It seemed that Wufei had not forgotten anything, a fact that he was pleased to know.  That meant that his
explanations to his friends had been accurate.  Still, Jeremy Piven went over the details, explaining to those that didn’t know,
such as the students that had grown up in Muggle families.

When Jeremy was finished speaking, he introduced the only other remaining team member from last year, a girl by the name of
Emily Kiernan.  Then the group of students trying out for the team were split into groups.  They were all given a number of
tests to perform, first to see how well they flew their broomsticks . . . balance, maneuverability, reflexes, and so forth.

Wufei noticed, that when Heero first took off, Madam Hooch kept a close watch on him.  Of course, so did most of the first
year students, all of them remembering the last time Heero had ridden a broomstick.  However, their concern proved
unnecessary . . . Heero flew quite skillfully now that the charm was gone.  Wufei couldn’t help but notice the smile on Heero’s
face before his attention was diverted back to the task at hand.

Tryouts went smoothly.  Each student was tested to see where they could possibly play.  First came practice with the Quaffle.  
Students went up against Jeremy and Emily and had to attempt scoring a goal.  That proved difficult for most, since Emily was
quite a skilled Keeper.  The five ex-pilots didn’t have too much trouble though, since they were quite skilled in strategy and other
such battling techniques.  They each just treated this as if it were simply another part of their training.

Next came defense against the Bludgers.  Several students were knocked from their brooms during this exercise.  However, to
Wufei and the other ex-pilots, this seemed too easy for them as well.  It seemed as if their years of training and piloting were
useful to them now that they were trying out for this sport.

Lastly, the students who had not been injured and taken from the field were given positions to play and split into two teams.  
This would test their team playing skills, as well as discover which people would end up on the team and who would act as
seconds.  Wufei and his four friends were on one team, with Quatre acting as Seeker, Trowa and Duo as Chasers along with a
young blonde-haired boy, and Wufei and Heero were Beaters, defending their comrades against attack.  Jeremy was playing as
Keeper.  On the other team were seven other Gryffindors . . . Emily being their Keeper.

By this time, a number of teachers had gathered at the field.  Students not participating were not permitted to be here.  Wufei felt
a bit nervous playing in front of an audience.  Still, he knew that he would have to get used to it if he did make the team.


Quatre felt a rush of exhilaration.  Part of it was his own, part of it was flowing from the other students trying out for the team.  
Harry had told him that he would make a prime Seeker, so Quatre was keeping an eye out for the Snitch while dodging the odd
Bludger.  For the first time, he was grateful for his time as a pilot.  He could dodge with great ease while still looking for the tiny
golden ball.

He took a quick second from his search to check up on his friends.  He was relieved to see that Heero was not only flying, he
was doing quite well . . . his injuries were not hampering his position as Beater at all.  Duo was whooping with joy as he flew
circles around the other players and scored goal after goal.  Duo seemed to be second only to Trowa as the quiet youth slipped
past the Keeper time and again.  The two passed mid-field and gave each other a high-five to congratulate each other.  Duo’s
bright smile was one of the few genuine happy expressions that the boy wore.  Wufei was simply doing his job as Beater as if he
had been born to do it.

Satisfied that his friends were all right, Quatre looked around again and almost cheered when he spotted the Snitch.  There was
another boy going after it, but the other boy was taller and of a heavier build than Quatre was.  Quatre knew to use his smaller
size to his advantage and bent over his broom to get less wind resistance.  He barely had time to register the other boy’s growl
before he grabbed the Snitch.

Quatre looked up, just in time to see as the other boy who had been going after the Snitch plowed into him.  He barely had time
to blink before he found himself knocked off his broom and falling to the ground below.  Luckily, he hadn’t been too high up.  
Quatre tried to land on his feet, however when he did so his one ankle twisted underneath his weight.  The pain surged up his
entire leg and he crumbled to the ground.  He winced, biting his lip to keep from crying out.

Carefully, he rose to his feet.  But as he did so, the boy that had knocked him down landed his broom and stalked over to his
quickly.  Within seconds, Quatre found himself the victim of a brutal attack.  The boy wasted no time in punching Quatre,
kicking his sore leg out from under him and pinning him to the ground with a number of harsh strikes to his face.

Quatre raised his arms in defense, knowing that he couldn’t retaliate.  With his training, he could inadvertently cause serious
harm to the violent teenager.  Quatre didn’t want to hurt anyone, not anymore.  So he merely lay there and defended against the
strikes the youth atop him delivered to his body and face.  In a last ditch effort, Quatre brought his uninjured leg up, pressing his
foot against his attacker and pushing him off.

The boy made a move to attack again.  However, before he could, Jeremy and Madam Hooch grabbed his arms, holding him
back.  Quatre lay back, gasping for breath as he took stock of his injuries.  There was nothing serious, nothing that would lead
to him dying at least.  From the pain in his face, he could tell that he would probably have two black eyes and multiple bruises
from this.  He tasted blood in his mouth, but couldn’t determine whether it came from the cut in his bottom lip or the blood that
was steadily flowing from either side of his nose.

His ribs were sore, but not too painful, so it was probable that the attacker had not broken any of his ribs.  Other than that all
that really hurt was his ankle.  And that wasn’t too bad either, so Quatre concluded that he had merely twisted it . . . a possible
sprain at most.  Nothing was serious really, and for that Quatre was grateful.

Gentle hands fell on Quatre’s body and he looked up, nearly smiling when he saw Harry kneeling over him.  “Are you all right?”  
Harry asked, carefully helping him to sit up.

“I’ll be fine.”  Quatre said, wincing since moving his face did hurt him.  Harry helped him to his feet.

Suddenly, Quatre found himself surrounded by teachers and students.  After checking on Quatre’s well-being, they all turned to
the boy that had attacked him.  “What is the meaning of this, Mr. Cosman?”  Professor McGonagall demanded from where she
stood beside Quatre, her hand on his shoulder.

“That bastard shouldn’t even be allowed in this school!”  The violent boy shouted, glaring maliciously at Quatre.  “It’s bad
enough I have to share a house with the freak, I don’t want him representing us on the Quidditch field!”

Quatre watching the fuming youth, remembering his name now that Professor McGonagall had reminded him.  His name was
Gregory Cosman, a seventh-year Gryffindor.  As far as Quatre knew, he had never even spoken with the young man . . . so he
had no idea of how he had offended him so greatly.

“That’s enough, Mr. Cosman!”  McGonagall shouted.  “There is no need to insult a fellow student!”

“He’s a murderer!”  Gregory exclaimed, tears falling from his eyes.  “He was a Gundam pilot!  He destroyed a colony!  He killed
thousands!  I was there, I was lucky to escape . . . my father apparated us to another colony before it was too late.  My sister
didn’t make it.  He killed her!  He killed all of those people!”

Quatre flinched.  He stumbled backward, shedding tears with every limping step he took.  “I’m sorry . . . I didn’t know . . . I
was wrong . . . I . . . I . . .”  He shook his head, not knowing what to say or do to make up for the pain left by his past sins.  

He turned and ran from the Quidditch field, at least ran as best as he could despite the pain in his leg.  Duo and others tried to
stop him, but Quatre pushed them away, feeling a deep need to flee, to escape the stares and whispers of his fellow house
mates.  He just ran away, tears burning his eyes and injuries as he staggered back to the castle.  He didn’t know where he was
heading, nor did he care . . . he just had to escape.

What would he do now?  With everyone informed of his horrible past, would he have to leave the school?  This was the first
place he had felt happy and now it was all ruined.  He’d have to leave now, all because of the fool he had been in the past, the
agony he had caused with his own grief-stricken rage.  Quatre knew that he couldn’t stay, not after all that he had done.  If he
wasn’t thrown out by Dumbledore, then he’d leave on his own . . . just to spare his fellow house mates the pain of being around
him any longer.

To Be Continued . . .