'Open it!'

A victorious Harry returns to the Gryffindor common room and tries opening his golden egg

Extract from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

By J.K. Rowling

Sure enough, when they entered the Gryffindor common room it exploded with cheers and yells again. There were mountains of cakes and flagons of pumpkin juice and Butterbeer on every surface; Lee Jordan had let off some Dr Filibuster’s Fabulous No-Heat, Wet-Start Fireworks, so that the air was thick with stars and sparks; and Dean Thomas, who was very good at drawing, had put up some impressive new banners, most of which depicted Harry zooming around the Horntail’s head on his Firebolt, though a couple showed Cedric with his head on fire.

Harry helped himself to food; he had almost forgotten what it was like to feel properly hungry, and sat down with Ron and Hermione. He couldn’t believe how happy he felt; he had Ron back on his side, he’d got through the first task, and he wouldn’t have to face the second one for three months.

‘Blimey, this is heavy,’ said Lee Jordan, picking up the golden egg, which Harry had left on a table, and weighing it in his hands. ‘Open it, Harry, go on! Let’s just see what’s inside it!’

‘He’s supposed to work out the clue on his own,’ Hermione said swiftly. ‘It’s in the Tournament rules ...’

‘I was supposed to work out how to get past the dragon on my own, too,’ Harry muttered, so only Hermione could hear him, and she grinned rather guiltily.

‘Yeah, go on, Harry, open it!’ several people echoed.

Lee passed Harry the egg, and Harry dug his fingernails into the groove that ran all the way around it, and prised it open.

It was hollow and completely empty – but the moment Harry opened it, the most horrible noise, a loud and screechy wailing, filled the room. The nearest thing to it Harry had ever heard was the ghost orchestra at Nearly Headless Nick’s Deathday Party, who had all been playing the musical saw.

‘Shut it!’ Fred bellowed, his hands over his ears.

‘What was that?’ said Seamus Finnigan, staring at the egg as Harry slammed it shut again. ‘Sounded like a banshee ... maybe you’ve got to get past one of those next, Harry!’

‘It was someone being tortured!’ said Neville, who had gone very white, and spilled sausage rolls over the floor. ‘You’re going to have to fight the Cruciatus Curse!’

‘Don’t be a prat, Neville, that’s illegal,’ said George. ‘They wouldn’t use the Cruciatus Curse on the champions. I thought it sounded a bit like Percy singing ... maybe you’ve got to attack him while he’s in the shower, Harry.’

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

By J.K. Rowling