[ϟ] to build a home

All one x one role-plays go here.
User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] to build a home

Post by 76heart » Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:25 am

Image
c          a          m         e━━━━━━━
━━━━━Image
Image━━;━
Image
━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
Image
━━━━━━i    h e l d     on ━━━
Image
━y          o          u━━━━━━━━━━
Image
Image
━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
















Image
━━━━of   the     s    k    i    n
Image
━━to   the ━━━━━━━━━━━━
Image
Image
━━━━━;━━━━━Image
Image━;;━━
━━━to        s    e    e      the ━━
Image
━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
Image
Image
















Image
━━━━━ will   a l  w  a  y s━━
━be    t  h  e  r  e   to━━━━━━
Image
Image
━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━

yet another thing for the fantabulous iris
and myself, featuring draco, leona, rosie
and percy <3

definitely beware of mature themes ahh

━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
Image
━━━━━where'er we roam━
Image━━;;━━
━━━our   o  n  e    and   o  w  n
Image

User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] 001

Post by 76heart » Fri Nov 30, 2018 1:15 pm

Image
━━━━━━━━━not a monster━━
Image
━she couldn't love━━━━━━
xxxEven though she had grown up in, and experienced it's many wonders and oddities for the entire time she had been alive, the magic of the wizarding world still managed to surprise her. Only a few moments ago, she had been standing in her family's living room in America, before the hearth, saying her goodbyes, and now she was here, in an inn near Diagon Alley, in a country across the sea, after dropping a green powder into the hearth. It shouldn't have surprised her in the slightest, given how many times she had used a floo network in the past, and yet, it did, and judging by the wide-eyed look on Percy's face as he appeared so near to her on the fireplace she had just stepped out of, he too was amazed by it. At least she wasn't alone in the feeling, when true, she had no right to feel it at all, especially given the fact she currently had a book bag hanging over her shoulder, that when opened with the correct password, turned into a new little world once stepped into, and housed her several very magical creatures. That wasn't normal, even for wizards, but regardless, that bag, and her creatures, were her life. They also happened to be the main reason she was here, besides her younger brother Percy being dead set on Gryffindor and Quidditch over anything Ilvermorny, the school where she, and the last few generations of their family had gone, had to offer. It was something that had been arranged when the previous Headmaster of Hogwarts, Albus Dumbledore had been alive. The thought of his death saddened her, and pulled on the strings of her heart. He had seemed like a very good man, one with a kind heart, and she wished she could have met him before his life was lost on that tragic day. Her great grandfather had met him a few times during the reigning terror of Gellert Grindelwald, as he had been working with the ministry at the time, assigned to two young wizards that had been caught up in his schemes, when Dumbledore was young and just a well-liked teacher at the school he came to run. She could recall her grandmother telling her how he had that that amidst all the darkness there was at the time, all the pain and horror, that the man had been one of the few lights there were, and now that light had been snuffed out, because of a new monster. All of it tugged at her heart, and pulled at it's strings. She missed her grandmother so much, and she wished that a good man hadn't had the need to die. Leona couldn't take the time to think of that right now however, as she and her younger sibling had just appeared in the fireplace of an inn in the wizard world close to Diagon Alley, their current desired location, and it probably wasn't safe to stay there. Who knew when the next person could just pop up from it and arrive, and how strange must the two of them look to the very few witches and wizards currently present in the lobby? Before she moved out of the fireplace though, one of her hands went to the necklace hanging from her neck; a faded golden triskelion, with a small black orb in the center, her fingers wrapping gently around it, encasing it within her palm. Her grandmother had given it to her on her deathbed, passed it down to her when she was only seven, and Leona had not taken it off ever since, except for it to be carefully cleaned by her alone. The necklace had meant the world to her grandmother, for within the black orb was a blood pact she had made with her husband, to always find each other again, even in death, and the piece of jewelry that had meant so much to her, was now one of the things that meant the most to Leona. She would guard it with her life, and keep it safe forever. It had become a symbol of strength for her as well, something to hold onto when things began to grow rough, or she began to miss her grandmother too much, and the weight of missing her began to grow to heavy. Her grandmother wouldn't want her to wallow, she would want her to smile, to pick herself up and go on, like the triskelion she wore, a symbol of movement that would never end, of mind, body, and soul.
xxxTurning her form to both better orient herself in these unfamiliar surroundings, and tell her younger sibling that it was time they go, she noticed that Percy had already stepped in beside her, Godric and his cage clutched tightly to him in his arms. She extended a hand to the cage, her index finger against the bars, and the Great Gray Owl promptly came to brush his head against it, releasing a happy sound as a small smile came to her lips, before she pulled her hand away and crouched so she was closer to Percy's level. She wasn't the tallest, but her younger brother was still noticeably shorter than her, and she didn't like it to feel like she was talking down to him, or that he'd have to look up to see her as she spoke. It didn't seem quite fair, or as kind as talking to someone at roughly similar eye levels, especially when she already had some authority over him as his elder sister, and also his guardian while they weren't at home in America. "Okay, you ready Perce? Stick close to me, and follow my lead. Do not leave my side, understand?" Leona asked him gently, her head tilting to the side as she watched him, waiting for an answer. He simply nodded, seemingly too busy processing everything else around him to speak and give a proper answer. He seemed to be nervous too, but she didn't want to point that out, or bring attention to it until he brought it up and was ready to say something and address it, otherwise she risked him closing himself off and being more hesitant to tell her anything, which she didn't at all want him to do. Letting out a soft breath of air, she straightened and turned her gaze to the door. It must look rather odd to the woman manning the front desk, for two people to just emerge from the fire place and then almost immediately leave, but her mother had already warned them somehow that they would be coming, so hopefully it would all be alright. She glanced down to her younger brother one more time, and then took a step toward the door. "Alright, let's go then, as soon as we're out of here and in someplace secluded, I'll get Dewitt and Hollivander, and then we can go." Leona's hand found it's place on Percy's back as he gave another nod to her words, and helped to guide him out of the inn they had arrived him, while keeping him close. She especially did not want to lose her little brother while they were in a place with no family, or friends to help look out for him, and would be alone with each only each other in a sea of people until they arrived at the Hogwarts Express, and then Hogwarts.

xxxIf her memory served her correctly, the Diagon Alley would be just down the street they had emerged on, and a turn to the left through a slim alleyway. That meant that along the way, there should be somewhere secluded and largely out of sight for them to stop, and retrieve her two creatures from the bag slung over her shoulder by only one of the book bag's straps. Leona kept Percy's close to her as they walked, and when she spotted a quiet dead ended alley with no one appearing to be near that looked to be perfectly suited for what she planned to do, she quickly pulled him with her into the dimly lit passage, but not without a noise of protest from her brother. She knew the sound wasn't genuine, and more just him trying to be a pest and complain, so instead of responding to it, she just rolled her eyes and knelt down onto the concrete, setting her book bag down very carefully in front of her. Out of the corner of her eye she could see Percy following suit, and coming to sit on the ground beside her with his legs crossed and the cage of his owl set in his lap, the bird using the time to begin preening his feathers after he was jostled slightly with the movement. It was nice to be around Godric again, she hadn't seen him in awhile, the last time she had being around a year ago when she first gave him to Percy for his birthday, and spent a lot of time training him beforehand so her family would not have to deal with an owl as mischievous as his human companion. Godric was not one of the creatures she needed to get from her bag though, he was already out, and they did not exactly have loads of time to delay, so promptly she returned her thoughts to the backpack, and the magical beasts she needed to retrieve. She lifted up the flap of the pack, and with her hands on they claps that held the drawstrings in place, she spoke the password to open it as she pulled, so she would be greeted with the world inside the bag, instead of a collection of books, and other normal items commonly found in a back pack. "Bó Cara Baile." Instantly, the bag opened, and she was peering down into the only building in the world in her bag, the hut it opened into to with everything she could possibly need to care for the creatures, and much more, and within that hut, there were currently two very excited golden shapes whirring about in the air, no larger than walnuts, trying to escape the bag to go to her. It was her pair of Golden Snidgets, that she had received from the sanctuary that now kept most of their species, after they took a special liking to her while she spent several months studying the animals and getting some pictures of them for Percy. Before the golden snitch was used in Quidditch, it was the snidgets that held that position, and as her brother adored the magical sport immensely, she wanted to help him learn more of this part of the sport, and instead of just getting to research them, she had ended up with two of her own. Now, as long as any offspring they produced-which had only happened once so far, as the two refused to do anything of the sort and had continued to refuse in the years she had known them- was given to the sanctuary as soon as it was old enough to be taken from it's parents, she would be allowed to keep them, and she was so happy of that. She couldn't let them out though, if she did, it would take ages to retrieve them here, and she didn't want to risk losing them in the streets of such a strange place. With a large smile on her features, she reached her hand in in hopes to encourage them to go down, and immediately felt the tiny birds come to greet her hand. She let out a small laugh as the feathers of their rapidly flapping wings tickled her skin, and watched them fondly as they flew excitedly around her hand, beyond ecstatic to see her again and say hello. "Yes Gidjet, Widget, I'm happy to see you too, now shoo, go back down. I promise I'll spent lots of time with you soon." Leona promised, a laugh breaking through her words along with a smile. They fluttered around her fingers, brushing against them with their feathers and holding on with their small talons, for another few moments, before reluctantly going further down to their nest inside the hut, giving dejected chirps she had come to learn were their goodbye. It was then she spotted the white of her Demiguise's fur, and him coming to the sound of her voice. Her smile broadened, and she pulled her hand from the bag. "Ah there you are Dewitt, it's time! Be sure to keep a careful hold on Hollivander as you bring him with you, he's never been here before, we don't want him to be scared." Leona watched as he then turned from watching her closely, and bounded away to the Bowtruckles' tree outside if the hut, running on all fours. The Demiguise had always been a magnificent assistant, and a good friend. She had known him her entire life, and when she was just a baby he would often watch over her and entertain her, and he did the same with Percy when he was born, and now that her grandmother was gone, and he had been entrusted to her, and she was old enough to travel, he had chosen to come with her and help her with her animals. She loved having him with her, and she loved him too. It was nice to not be so alone when she was traveling with her creatures safely in her bag, and due to the ability of his kind of turning invisible, he was able to stay outside the bag with her quite often, even in areas filled with No-Maj, either riding on her back or walking beside her with his hand in her own. Most demiguise likely could not be trusted like that, but Dewitt was different, and she trusted him with her life, and the life of all her creatures. Winks trusted him too, which mattered to her as well, as the half-kneazle ginger colored cat was her other partner and closest friend in life, and the two spent a lot of time together. Thankfully, they were close friends too, and seemed to trust each other as well, even if a lot of it was likely because they both cared for her, and knew she loved the other as well, at least in the case of Winks. Winks didn't truly enjoy the presence or like anyone but Leona, and Dewitt was the closest he had come to liking someone besides her. She did hope his care for the demiguise was genuine though, and she had a strong feeling that it was.
xxxSuddenly, a loud crash sounded from within the bag, causing Leona to jump, and Godric to spread his wings in alarm. Quickly, she peered into her bag, and easily spotted where the sound had come from. It was Tiddlywinks, sitting innocently on the floor, with a fallen pot beside him, and his fur all ruffled and messy. She had to stifle a laugh at the sight, and shook her head with a sigh. "Oh Winks, you silly cat. I promise I'll be with you soon as well, you'll be able to come out once we're there. Don't think we all didn't just hear you trying to climb out while we wait." Leona smiled at the creature as he gave a protesting meow accompanied by an indignant huff as she shifted his paws and curled his fluffy tail around him, watching her intently. It was obvious that he had tried climbing up using the stack of books to jump at top the cabinets and to her, but clearly, he had missed, and jumped on one of the hanging pots instead. He looked to be unharmed, so no damage had been done except to the cat's pride, and she could easily just go and pick the pot up once they were on the train, and do a check on all of her creatures. She was especially nervous to see how her thestral, Thess was doing, and how her occamy family was dealing with all this. She had raised Thess since he was really small, and she saw him as her own child more often than not, and her occamy Felicis, still wasn't adjusting well to things, or her parents and siblings, and Leona couldn't help but worry for them all.
xxxLuckily, before she had the time to worry too much about her creatures, Dewitt came back, with the bowtruckle riding on his shoulder, it's tiny plant hands and feet hanging onto his long white fur. Her smile returned, and once again she reached her hands into the bag, to help Dewitt out. He, being an ape-like creature, easily scaled the counters and cabinets above them, and reached her hands without any trouble. Normally she'd have gone in to lift him out and retrieve Hollivander herself, or she'd have extended the ladder she used to step inside, but she didn't want to leave Percy alone, or give her creatures an access point to sneak out from. Once she had a firm grip on him with her a hand under each of his arms, she lifted him from it, and brought him to her lap, his arm ground around her shoulders as he turned to watch her. She quickly freed her arms from his sides and pulled the clasp upward along the strings to shut the bag, and keep her creatures from getting out. As soon as her hands retuned to the creature and she finished closing the bag, the demiguise leaned up to touch his nose to hers in greeting, and pass Hollivander to one of her arms. The bowtruckle eagerly took to her hand, hugging one of her fingers as he moved to her hand, nearly slipping off in excitement. She couldn't help but grin at the two creatures and hold Dewitt a little closer. "Dewitt my sweet darling, thank you for the kiss. And yes Hollivander, I'm so glad to see you as well. You're going to meet a special person with Percy soon, are you ready?" Leona questioned, her head tilted as she watched the small green creature, who looked not unlike a collection of young sapling branches just starting to grow, with a single leaf at the top. She saw the creature nod and turn to Percy, who was watching with interest. It was odd for him to be so quiet, but as with his nervousness, she would have to wait until he was ready to bring it up on his own. Returning her attention to Hollivander, she gave him another smile, and leaned closer as Dewitt climbed off her lap, sitting attentively beside her. "Good, now let's go, we don't want to dally here and end up missing the train, now do we?" Leona gave him once last little grin, and then slowly extended her hand to her younger sibling, who already had his out and waiting. "Percy, be very careful with him, he can be very fragile." Leona reminded, only to earn a little grown from him in response. "I know, you've told me a hundred times already. I'll keep him safe and I'll make sure he's not hurt, I promise." Percy replied, his eyes following the bowtruckle as he climbed the boy's arm, and came to stop on his shoulder, gripping onto his dark hair. Of course, there was the Percy she knew. Shaking her head playfully, she began to stand, slinging the pack back over her shoulder and helping Dewitt onto her back. The demiguise made himself comfortable holding onto the shoulder the bag was slung over her shoulder, and holding onto her back and side with the rest of his three limbs. It probably looked odd to most people, but she didn't care, and now, she was in the mood to tease her little brother a tiny bit before they entered the alley they were meant to go to. Once he stood, she made a move to ruffle his hair, but he swatted her and away with a protesting 'Hey!'. "If you know the plan so well then, let's go and get you your wand, everything else you need is already packed and in my book bag, and you certainly don't need another owl." Leona teased, not bothering to hide her smile as Percy protectively placed the hand of his free arm in his hair, brushing it back to fix the non existent damage she had caused it.

xxxNow that they had the remaining two of their party present and with them, it didn't take long until they reached Diagon Alley, and were surrounded by it's many shops on both sides, most weren't of interest to her, but they were interesting nonetheless, and some of the many people bustling through the street and around them caught her eye with their flashy dress or odd looking hats, or the small loads that they carried. She could see several other young witches and wizards, either Percy's age or a little older, walking throughout the street. Despite Diagon Alley being a place she had never before been, it was refreshing in it's own way, and it didn't take much to decide that she liked it, a lot. She didn't get to enjoy it as much as she would have otherwise though, as Percy had decided to busy himself as they walked through the busy shopping street by asking her questions she had already answered at least a hundred times: "No-majs are called muggles here right?" "Yes Percy.", "They have those nice fancy accents here, right?" "Yes Percy.", "Will I be able to play qudditch my first year?" "No Percy." "Come on, really?" "It's highly unlikely and you know mom won't allow it." "Can I at least practice with Gidg-" "No! I've told you that already, several times. I'm sure that's cheating." "But you cheated-" "Percy!" "Okay, fine."
xxxThat seemed to continue on for what felt like hours- but in reality was only a few mere minutes-, until he finally asked something new, his voice strained and timid, and her gaze flickered over to him, her pace slowing to a halt, and her hand coming to rest on his shoulder to turn him to her, and let him know she had stopped, as his gaze had fallen to his feet before he looked to her at her touch. She gave his shoulder a gentle, and hopefully reassuring squeeze to urge him to continue. "Leona? What if I'm not sorted into Gryffindor?" Percy asked quietly, searching her face with dark eyes filled with concern. He sounded genuinely nervous, worried even, maybe even a little ashamed, and his voice was slightly shaky. It was a destiny he had been so sure of before, that for whatever reason, he was for the first time, beginning to doubt. Her eyes softened. She quickly moved to kneel in front of him, carefully so as not to jostle the demiguise riding on and clinging to her shoulder too much, and gently tucked a loose strand of her younger brother's hair back into place while she lightly tilted his head to look at her. "Hey, Perce, look at me, it'll be fine, I promise you. I'm sure it's the house you'll end up in. You're the exact embodiment of what the house values, and if the sorting hat doesn't see that, I'm sure you can persuade it." Her voice was soft as she spoke, and her hand moved down to his to give his smaller hands a gentle squeeze of reassurance. He looked up at her, with round, hopeful eyes. "Are you sure?" His question was just as hopeful as his eyes, just more fragile, more unsure, and asking for reassurance from her. "Oh Percy, of course I'm sure." Leona assured, both her eyes and voice filled with nothing but sincerity. She was more than certain it would all be alright, not matter what house Percy ended up in, even if it was not Gryffindor, but right now she knew he needed to hear that he would, and her answer was not a lie. If her brother did not end up in the house he had been longing to be in for so long, she would be much more than a tiny bit surprised. She had never met someone, in all her travels, that suited the house better than he did, and she truly hoped the sorting hat would see that; Percy would be devastated if it did not, and refused to put him in the house he had always wanted. "Do you think you're ready to continue now?" Leona gave his hand another comforting squeeze, and Hollivander gave a gentle encouraging tug on the boy's shaggy hair as he looked between them. Percy took a moment to consider, seeming to gather himself for a few seconds, before nodding and pulling his hand away from hers. "Yeah, yeah. I'm ready. Thanks Leona." He took a deep breath after he finished, and looked out onto the street. People had been moving around them after they stopped fairly close to the side of a shop, and a flush came to her cheeks as she realized they had been obstructing the flow of the street for a little while. Oops. I'm sorry, everyone. Leona stood then, and placed her hand on the shoulder Hollivander wasn't hitching a ride on. "Any time. You're my dorky little brother, I'm not going to leave you to be sad." After she finished, she saw a smile bloom on his features. Good, he was smiling again. With a quick ruffle of his hair that she managed to sneak in before he could push her hand away, the two continued, an exaggerated from on Percy's face as he struggled to fix his hair while they walked.

xxxAlong the way, they passed several quite interesting looking shops, a wide array present as they made their way down the street to the far end, weaving carefully through the people so the creatures they carried would not get hurt. They passed a shop with golden scissors above the door that slowly opened and closed, likely a shop for clothing or robes, and another opposite it with a rather unusual leaning shape. Each shop seemed to be a different color, with a different shape and style, some with things out front, like cauldrons or things that looked to odd apples, or some green fruit on a stick, while others kept their displays within the windows of their stores, carefully set up to attract all who walked by. It didn't take them too long to pass one if the only two shops she knew by name, and when they came to it, she couldn't help but slow her pace a little and pause to look at the owls outside of it. It was Eeylops Owl Emporium, and she wished so badly that she could go in and say hello to all of the beautiful owls there were. Owls had always been her favorite creature, magical or not, and she longed for one to call her own. She knew it was an odd favorite, considering she was a Magizoologist and studied and kept several magical creatures within her own family, but that didn't change how much she loved the birds, especially Barred Owls, and any variant of the Scops Owl. The creatures were a symbol of knowledge, of wiseness and wisdom, and to the wizarding world, they were so very important. They were the messengers, the carriers of letters of all kinds of importance, and loyal valiant companions and friends. A beautiful snowy owl flapped it's wings inside it's cage, adjusting, and a lovely barn owl sat dutifully on it's perch beside, watching the people pass along the alley. Inside there were several more cages within sight, each with a different and truly stunning owl, and she so wished that they could forget their plans and stop to go inside. The only reason she hadn't gotten herself an owl yet, was because she hadn't found on perfect for her, the one she had a true connection with from the very first moment, and that was something very important to her. She had a special connection with each of her creatures, and she wanted that with an owl too. What if that special owl could be waiting for her in there? Would she have time to go back and look during the school year? She hoped she did, she so hoped that she did, because she certainly did not have the time now, and she was not at all fond of being late or cutting it close. It was only when she felt Percy tugging on her hand to tell her to go that she realized she had already taken too much time gazing at them, and that she had stopped all together to gaze longing at the creatures. A blush immediately rose to her cheeks, and she dipped her head to hide it as they continued on. Dewitt shifted to look more around them, as he usually did when they were out and about together, quietly observing all they passed. Percy took a moment to linger by a shop that sold brooms, commenting on something she didn't at all understand a word of, and then they finally reached it, Ollivander's. She pulled Percy over to the side of it, where they wouldn't be getting in the way of people walking, and held her hands out to take Godric in his cage. "Here, I'll take Godric and wait for you right out here." Leona watched as Percy gave a nod, and handed his owl over. The owl gave a hoot for a hello, and Dewitt lowered himself on her shoulder to check out the bird that had joined him in her arms, before going back to his previous position on her shoulder. He knew Godric well, he had helped Leona raise him from a tiny fuzzy owlet, and had helped her to train him as he grew. "Behave, both of you. I expect you to be on your best behavior Hollivander, and watch Percy for me, will you?" Leona asked, giving Percy a small tease as the bowtruckle gave it's own version of a salute from the boy's shoulder. "Hey!" Percy looked more than a little offended at his sister's words, and she couldn't help but laugh. "Oh just go in Percy." Leona tried to ruffle his hair again, and he stuck his tongue out at her in reply dodging out of the way, but then something changed. He hesitated after she pushed him forward, towards the door with a gentle shove, and through his eyes she could see he was nervous, again. Her expression softened, and though she couldn't exactly crouch down to his height with all she was now carrying, like she had before, she gently placed a comforting hand on his shoulder. "Hey, you'll be all right Percy, I promise. I'm right her if you need me, I'm not going anywhere. We're together in this, I'm not leaving my little brother to fend for himself." Leona promised sincerely, holding his gaze in earnest. She wished she could say more to comfort him, and bring him some ease, but she wasn't sure if there was any cure to his nerves besides getting to the school and having his worries eased there, by showing him it would all be alright. For now at least, her words seemed to help him and bring him some ease, and after a small smile, and a moment of preparing himself after turning to look at the shop, he went in, his school robes swishing behind him as he entered. Dewitt gave her nose another touch with his own, nudging the side of her face comfortingly, and then took to watching him through the window along with her. She was worried for Percy, but she knew Hollivander would take care of him, and at least she could be thankful that she did not have to wear her school robes ever again, unless of course the teachers and others present at Hogwarts needed to as well, which she highly doubted. She had never liked the uniform, or the idea of a uniform to begin with, let alone the fact she had to wear a skirt, so she was beyond glad she didn't have to anymore. She was able to wear whatever she wanted now, which in this case, was a thin sweater that faded from purple at the top, to an orange, and a faint green color at the bottom, with darker stripes throughout all the colors, and a raster grainy look to it all, underneath an unbuttoned jacket of a dark gray purple color, verging on a dark mauve. It had stripes as well but they were much thinner, and lighter, and created many squares of the dark color. Her triskelion necklace sat atop the sweater, the triskelion part falling roughly in the middle of her chest, and along with the sweater and jacket, she wore tight fitting jeans, and a pair of dark colored boots. The left boot had the tip of her wand hanging out, and while it probably wasn't the best place to keep a wand, it so far was the most convenient place she had found for it, and the one place her creatures had not yet managed to take to from, as they did for every other place she tried to keep it. Nevertheless, the time for waiting had begun, and she just had to hope that he didn't take too long in the shop showing the much older man her bowtruckle and getting his wand.

Image
━mischievous and brave━━
Image
━━━━━━━and  quidditch━━━
xxxThis was the first time he had ever been more than a few hours drive away from his home, let alone several thousand miles across an ocean from it, in an entirely different continent, and he was nervous, so very nervous, even when he tried to stuff the nerves down and hide how strongly he felt them all. He had never been to a place like this or done anything like this before, and he already missed his parents, his home, even his bed, but he wasn't alone, thankfully, at least right now. He had his older sister Leona and her creatures with him, and his owl Godric of course, and they'd be with him at Hogwarts, a school of witchcraft and wizardry, so he'd always have them somewhere near. He would have to go into Ollivander's alone with the bowtruckle on his shoulder though, and he wasn't sure if he was ready. He was really nervous, incredibly anxious, and even a bit scared. His sister had done a good job of reassuring him this far, and he appreciated that so so much, but he still couldn't help but remain as anxious for it all as before. He wished he had more time to ready himself and convince himself to go inside, but the seconds they had left were ticking by, and he really wanted to be more than a little early for the train so there wasn't any chance at all that they would arrive late and miss the train, which meant he couldn't take hours or even minutes to sit and prepare himself to go in. Percy wished he had the time to just figure out what he was feeling to begin with too, because he so rarely ever felt nervous, and the feeling felt so foreign and weird and strange and he just wanted it to go away and never come back. He didn't like feeling nervous or anxious one little bit, and he so hoped that it would go and not stay any longer because it was annoying and he didn't like it and it felt weird and all it was doing was getting in the way of everything he had been looking forward to for several years, and the majority of his life now. As soon as he had learned about Hogwarts, he instantly wanted to go there instead of Ilvermorny like his sister and parents and the several generations of their family before, and now that dream was finally happening and coming true, but his stupid nervousness was making him hesitate and just getting utterly and completely in the way and he really hated it and wished the dumb feeling would just go and never ever come back and return. He had wanted this since he was four years old, and it had all been put in place when he was six after his parents learned that this was most definitely not a phase, and something that wasn't going to change, and now Hogwarts was finally so close to him and just about within his grasp. In only a couple more hours he would be there, in his new home away from home, with his sister near and close by, helping the Gamekeeper who taught the class on magical creatures, and studying the animals they had there. Before the day ended he would be at the school he had so desperately wanted to go to for years; he should be bouncing off the walls like he nearly had been before he stepped into the fireplace and appeared hear, so why wasn't he? His dumb, stupid, irritating, nerves, and the fear that he might not be sorted into House Gryffindor. Gryffindor. The house he had loved and adored ever since he had learned about Hogwarts, and even before then when his parents told him about their family and the house they had all been in. He was named after a noble knight of King Arthur's roundtable, and he even shared a name with the previous Hogwarts headmaster, who had also been a Gryffindor. He had even named his owl after the house's founded, Godric Gryffindor. His entire life seemed meant to be made for the house, and if he wasn't sorted into it, he didn't know what he would do. This wasn't Ilvermorny, where several of the totems could react and he'd get to choose, this was Hogwarts, where a talking hat gifted strongly with legilimency chose the house for the first year it was placed upon, and he didn't know how nice or accurate the hat was, or if it would even listen to him or take his desire into account. What would he even do if he wasn't sorted into Gryffindor? None of the other houses seemed to fit him. He wasn't cunning or wickedly clever and ambitious like a Slytherin, and he wasn't creative and wise like a Ravenclaw, like his sister, and he most certainly wasn't a Hufflepuff. He was too out there and mischievous to be one of them, and while he definitely valued loyalty and being hard working, he didn't find them as important as he found bravery and courage. To be loyal, one had to be brave, and stick true to who they were and not let anyone sway them from it. That could take a lot of courage, and even more heart. He didn't want to be known for his kindness, or his intelligence or cunning. Percy wanted to be known for his bravery, for his daring, for his chivalry, like the knights in shining armor in all the stories and books his sister used to have the biggest crushes on. He wanted to be known for being the bravest Quidditch player there ever was, the one with the grandest courage and willingness to take the biggest risks. He didn't care about the other houses and their values at all in comparison; he just wanted to be brave, to be courageous, and show it to the world. Courageous. Brave. Oh, right. He wasn't even brave enough to step into a shop. How was he going to be sorted into Gryffindor if he couldn't even summon up the courage to do that? He had been so ready, so excited only a little while ago back in room, bragging about how he'd be in the house his whole family had been in before they moved, but then it had faded completely when he got to the inn, and he was just so worried, and unsure. Traveling so far from home so quickly seemed to have just shown him the gravity of it all, and the weight of everything it carried, and now he was too scared to go in a shop. His family owned a shop, they lived above a shop, and he had helped out in that shop for years now. why on Earth was this a problem? He wasn't a stranger to shops at all, why couldn't he suck it up and go through those damn doors? If he couldn't do that, maybe he wasn't brave at all? Maybe he wasn't meant to be, or cut out for ending a Gryffindor? No, he couldn't let himself think like that. He couldn't, and he wouldn't, and he would go through those stupid doors. He would go in, and show Ollivander the bowtruckle he had named after him, and then he would get his wand, and go back to his sister with pride, and then they would get to the train, and arrive at Hogwarts together, and he would be sorted into Gryffindor. He could do this. He could do this.

xxxThe dark blue, almost black door seemed to loom menacingly before him as he finally found the courage and determination to look up at them and the golden curls of writing of the shop's founding above, but the rounded walls on either side, with their middles filled with windows, jutting out like two cylinders cut in half, helped to make it all feel less intimidating, and less difficult to approach. They reminded him of scrolls, the ones with fancy caps on either end to keep them in place, or even the circular towards of grand castles with their pretty roofs. Would Hogwarts have towers like that? It was a castle, right? He really hoped it did, he had always like castles with them; they looked much nicer in his eyes when they weren't all boring and a unique collection of just rectangles and squares.
xxxWith a final deep breath, and glance back at Leona, he finally took a step forward, and pushed his way carefully through the doors, the bowtruckle tightening it's grip on his hair to keep steady, as his normal constant confidence finally returned. A bell jingled as he entered, and he found himself in a small, rather old, and faintly dusty looking, quaint shop. The lighting was dim, but he didn't mind; he could see well enough, and it was nice to not have all sorts of bright colors leaping out at him from every possible angle, attracting his attention in several places at once. There were a few long looking, tall shelves in the middle of of the store, between the walls, and it looked like ever single wall but the one at the front of the shop, was mostly covered in shelves housing boxes of wands. How many wands were there, and did the man make all of them all on his own? How long had it taken him if he had? He didn't even know how someone could run a shop and also make this many wands and get enough sleep to do both. He had to be superhuman, or something. After another moment of looking around though, he realized that the shop's proprietor, and the man he wanted to see, Garrick Ollivander, wasn't anywhere in sight. Was the shop closed? Had he come while the man wasn't here? No, that couldn't be it, if it was the case, the door would be locked, and it wouldn't have been able to get in, unless the man had forgotten, which he highly doubted. His parents were almost religious about locking the doors whenever they left, even for a second, and he doubted that most shopkeepers were vastly different from that. So where was the man? Was he in one of the rooms he could see doors too? On a higher floor? "Hello? Mr. Ollivander, are you here?" Percy called, stepping a little further inside, and leaning up on the toes of his feet to see if that would help him spot the man. Hollivander appeared to be straining his limbs to look as well, his little eyes roaming his surroundings, searching for something. It was only a moment, a coupes heartbeats, before he heard a reply. "Yes, yes, I'm here! Just a moment." The voice sounded as if it had come from far back in the shop, somewhere from behind the shelves and wand boxes that Percy couldn't see, and it also sounded kind of old, withered with age almost, but still welcoming, and patient, and kind. Hollivander began to move down from his shoulder and to his hand, which he quickly turned to allow the creature to step onto his palm, rather than the back of his hand, and thus be a little safer if either of them moved. Percy then slowly moved his hand closer to his form, and he felt the small being tug gently on his robes as he investigated them curiously, lifting the wrinkles and peering underneath them, as if he expected something different to be hidden beneath them. When Percy looked up from watching the bowtruckle, at the very same time, an old man appeared from behind one of the many tall shelves filled and lined with boxes of wands. It had to be Ollivander. He looked very old, and fragile, like he would break if someone pushed him too hard, but his pale eyes were still bright and alive, even in the gloom of the shop. There was a kindness to his eyes, a little glistening spark even while the features of his face seemed to look sad, and it eased Percy more than he ever could have imagined that it would. Something about the much older man just made him immediately feel more comfortable, and safe around him, and it erased some of his nerves. He didn't know about the sorting hat, or the train, or the school or it's teachers, but at least now he could be sure that getting a wand would go okay, and that he didn't have to worry about that like he was worrying about everything else, and that was a humongous relief.
xxx"Ah, hello there, to the both of you. I remember every wand I've ever sold, unless I'm mistaken, I don't believe I've sold a wand to anyone in your family." The older man greeted, smiling warmly. He seemed to dust off his hands as he emerged further from the shelf, and walked to stand behind the counter Percy was standing near. His hair was a silvery white, and on the longer side. "Unless you give wands to Ilvermorny, I don't think you would have. My name is Percy, and this is Hollivander! He's my sister's since she's a magizoologist, but she let me name him and one other of her five. I named him after your shop, because my mom says your family's wands are the best, and Bowtruckles guard wand wood trees." Percy told him, the words spilling out quickly from his lips, excitedly trying to rush themselves forward and out into the world as he spoke. His hand extended toward the shopkeeper to show him the bowtruckle, and as Percy spoke, Hollivander seemed to straighten, and attempt to look prouder and more impressive. It was kind of cute to watch the creature do, and Percy really hoped that the man didn't mind that he had named the bowtruckle after him, his shop, and his family. "Well Mr. Percy, I'm quite flattered." The older man gave him a warm smile, his eyes bright, and then turned his attention to the many wands surrounding them. "I believe I know just the wand for you already. One moment!" With that, he turned and made his way down one of the shelves, peering at the many boxes filling the walls. Percy watched as a he pulled a few out, shook his head, and then pushed them back into place, until finally he found what he was looking for. The box was a creamy white color, and there was writing on one end, but he couldn't make it out just yet, it was too far away. "Ah! Here we are, try this." Ollivander exclaimed, returning to the boy and carefully taking the wand from the box, and then holding it out to him. Percy carefully took it from his hands, and waited for Hollivander to returned to his shoulder before taking a few seconds to look it over. It was long, at least a foot, and a silvery white color, just like the wandmaker's hair. Hesitantly, he gave it a wave, and immediately jumped in surprise, nearly dropping the thing as a light shot out of it and collided with a lamp on the desk, shattering it instantly into many broken pieces. He stood there silently, with his eyes as wide as they could go, staring at what he had just broken. Hollivander and Ollivander looked equally startled, and the bowtruckle held onto his hair quite tightly. Well that certainly wasn't good. "Decidedly not then." Ollivander finally breathed out, already turning back to the many shelves of wands as Percy quickly, and a bit shakily, returned the wand to it's box, which the wandmaker's had set on the desk. Jeez, he really had broken that lamp, and very badly. He hoped it wouldn't cost too much to fix, or that it would be some horrible thing that got himself and his family banned from the shop. "I'm sorry!" Percy suddenly blurted out, as he realized he had not said the words yet. The older man didn't seem to care at all though, he simply waved the apology off, and took to looking at the wands again. "Quite alright, quite alright." He assured, somewhat absentmindedly, his focus clearly already back on finding a wand for him that would not explode one of his things again. "Wait there, I think I know just the thing. I'll be just a moment." He disappeared up the stairs, fingers running along the shelves as he looked for whatever possible wand had come into his mind.

xxxPercy was definitely glad for the few moments he would be getting alone, he was still feeling a bit shaken from the lamp he had just essentially exploded only a few moments ago, and the feeling of magic running through his fingers and the wand had felt unusual and strange, and he wasn't sure if he was ready to instantly feel that again. He didn't want to damage something or make it harder for the man at least, or scare or accidentally injure Hollivander, so he so hoped that this time the wand would be one that chose him, and did not decide to destroy something else in rejection. Glancing up at the stairs where he had disappeared on, and then to the creature on his shoulder, he let out a sigh, allowing his reignited nerves to calm down at least a tiny bit again. "He's a bit strange, isn't he Hollivander? I like him though, and I really hope he's not mad that I broke his lamp." Percy told him, his head tilting as he then turned his attention to looking around the shop. If all the wands were taken away, he wasn't sure there would be much else inside it honestly. He could see a glass base of flowers, and then a few books by the broken lamp, but that was really it. He liked the look of all the wands stacked and arranged in the way they were though, and how each section of boxes and wands had a different color to them. Was that to more easily show the kind of wood they were made of or something? That was probably it, but whatever it was, he liked it. He could hear the footsteps of the man on the floor above, and even some muffled voices of conversations being held by the people passing outside. When he turned, he could still see Leona waiting for him near the door, gazing in the direction of the Owl Emporium thing they had passed along the way, with Dewitt watching the people that passed them silently. It was a bit odd to see that no one even looked to be coming in, but at the same time, he supposed that was rather normal. Most of the kids and adults walking through Diagon Alley probably already had their wands, either from her or passed down from a member of their family, or they planned to get their wand after they had gotten everything else. If someone did come in though, what would they think of him and the green stick creature on his shoulder, and then of the broken lamp? Would they scold him? Laugh? Roll their eyes? Something else? He really hoped they wouldn't be like that if another came in, he already felt awful enough a both breaking the lamp. Swallowing, he turned back to the spot where he had last seen Mr. Ollivander, and watched for his return. He could still her the man shuffling about above, even mumbling a few things. What was he searching for? Was it something special or rare or difficult to find? He wasn't at all sure what it could be, but he was curious, and eager to find out.

Iris
Lovely Friend
Posts: 198
Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 12:50 pm

[ o n e ] the start of something beautiful

Post by Iris » Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:38 am

xxxxImage
Image
Image
xImage
Five years. It seemed like such a long time, especially when compared to other events that allowed such a length of time to be put in to perspective. A witch or wizard who had mastered the art could apparate between London and Scarborough, for instance, seamlessly in such a length of time that it would be difficult to even attempt to calculate and would be measured in seconds at most. Someone could use a top-shelf broom to fly the entirely of the England coast line in mere hours. Some of the most daunting of potions could take days or weeks, perhaps, to be completed. In theory, a witch or wizard could manage to become an Animagus in as little as a month. The length of time required for the gestation of a human being didn't even call for the entirety of a single year to have passed. Five years, though? It was a haunting number, one that had developed slowly, minute after minute, minutes turning to hours, hours turning to days, days turning to weeks, weeks turning to months, and months slowly accumulating in to years. Every second that ticked by was marked, seemingly punctuated with the likeness of the ticking hands of a dusty old antique grandfather clock, lacking varnish but scuffed only by the meticulously placed witness marks left as a decipherable recording meant only for those with the incredibly rare talent to decipher it, in the center of an otherwise opulent estate.

It had been five years since everything had changed, and yet for Draco Malfoy, it felt like five years since anything had changed. Perhaps that was a good thing, at least in theory. It was a blessing, even if it was a blessing that was markedly difficult to comprehend. No change didn't only mean that time felt static, like he was trapped within the hand that was slowly ticking through time. No, five years later and a time without change meant that there was no more Voldemort- that the massive Malfoy manor was free of the Dark Lord and his insatiable snake. They were both dead, that hadn't changed. His family was free of Azkaban, their cunning and circumstance enough to allow them to remain free of that terrible magical prison- that hadn't changed either, thankfully enough given their crimes. The three Malfoys still had their health and each other, at least, in addition to their freedom. It was true, perhaps, in some ways then that life remaining static through time wasn't a negative in its entirety. In the most basic of ways, the parts of life that seemed so fundamental, the monotony could be seen in few ways other than positive. After all, when you become a death eater, it could be claimed, you lose the ability to complain about life being quiet while you live in a beautiful mansion home, have more gold in your vault than you could ever even contemplate spending in a dozen lifetimes, safe and in good health with family who are fortunate enough to exist in the same condition. After everything that Draco had been through, he understood that sort of trade off more than most. He was alive- after everything he and his family and went through, after all that they had done and had been tasked with, had laid witness to, and all of the lives that they had been, even indirectly, a part of snuffing out, he was undoubtedly fortunate for that at least. It had been five years since that level of absolute misery had ended, since the Dark Lord's reign of terror upon the wizarding world had come to a violent and bloody end.

Everything had changed during the second wizarding war. It was cataclysmic in some ways, effecting all wizards in England without a doubt, but Draco, perhaps, more than most. The Malfoys had played their part in what then seemed like a life shattering event for them- a trial for Lucius that had brought no shortage of suspicion upon the family in most social circles, cementing the public's knowledge that not only had the Dark Lord returned, but Lucius was still ever the death eater that he had been during the first wizarding war, a time when he had claimed to do the unmoral bidding of the man himself only after becoming the victim of the imperious curse. Draco had been chosen as the wizard to kill Dumbledore himself, the greatest wizard in the entirety of the world, some would claim - though, certainly they would have never have done so in the presence of the Dark Lord. There had been blood and fear and threats. The entirety of that period, from the first time Draco had met the Dark Lord to the time of his demise, had been filled with fear and threat and isolation for the youngest member of the Malfoy family. His family had played the role of dubiously willing host to the Dark Lord himself, imprisoned in their minds and in some ways in their very own home as the hand of the clock moved at an ever slower pace, each day filled with more misery than the last. He had lost friends in the war. Some he had lost while he watched them lose their lives, and others he had lost through how the entirety of the experience had changed him in its aftermath, but he had lost them all all the same and then there was nothing. There was life and wealth and family, that was true, but there was public disdain and distance and mistrust which seemed to tug harder at the hands of the clock, forcing it to move even slower. It was all static now, or at least it had been, and like the clock itself Draco was only left scuffed by witness marks. Otherwise pristine, but marked by his past and the damned symbol on his forearm that would forever remain a reminder of it.

Yet, for all that had remained the same, and all that always would, there was a hint of a sort of changing of winds or tides that seemed to seep in to the air around him. Perhaps not a hint, as it lacked the subtly of such a thing, but yet it clung to such ambiguity that hint seemed likely as good a word as any could possibly ever carry the hope of being. It was a marriage, funnily enough, something he hadn't quite taken the time to consider in any capacity in years, and had never done so in any serious or at least emotional way. Growing up, of course he knew the name would come. He was the heir to the Malfoy family. Everything that so many generations had worked tirelessly for would be his and his alone. The Malfoy manor, the great estate in which he had been raised and doted upon by his mother, would be inevitably passed down to him. The Malfoy vault in Gringotts would be his, along with the heirlooms and hundreds of millions of pounds worth of gold that were protected within the confines of that dusty old vault. Most importantly of all, however, was the name; Malfoy, the name he and he alone would be passing on, keeping the Malfoy name alive and thriving in to the next generation. It was a great responsibility that had been stressed most heavily upon him by his father since a young age, the image and legacy of it all. So naturally, of course, Draco had given it some thought as he grew. He knew he'd be getting married some day, even when he had been so young that he hadn't yet acquired an interest in the fairer sex, he knew that he would be married some day. Of course it went without saying that the woman would be a pure blood, he had been so sure of that in his youth and even as his mind changed with age and through trauma and circumstance, he was still so sure of it now. Beyond that, of course, he couldn't say. It had been nothing beyond an abstract concept, an ideal that seemed so far odd and so detached from himself, left only in his parent's words and his own mind and once or twice even in Pansy's ramblings, though the idea had seemed laughable at the time and even more preposterous now. It was always just an inevitability, though, a then rather than a now, and even with that considered the way time was moving after the war, then seemed like eons in to the future, a time which he could not even possibly care to contemplate. Yet, in a way that seemed so oddly poetic, like so many decisions pertaining to his life had been made for him rather than by him, just because Draco hadn't been contemplating marriage by no means meant that it wasn't being contemplated for him. A decision made on his behalf, by no other than the person who had made such a habit of it.

Regardless of who had made the decision, it was an inevitability now- a smart match, his mother had approved. Of course, Draco wouldn't know past the lineage, really. He had only met his future bride on a few separate occasions, the first being a meeting he only vaguely remembered during his six or seventh year, when she was a first or second year. He had more on his plate to deal with than some child, and she was just some child, so he could easily forgive himself for being a bit fuzzy on the details due to not having given an actual damn about her enough when they had first met to cement the meeting in to his memory. Over the past summer had been the most recent meeting, a brief introduction in which all that Draco had really taken from it was that she was taller than he remembered, about the same height as he was now, and just a few meetings in between. They were nothing special, no emotional anything, but the knowledge that they were to marry had set time off, in some way, even if it hadn't exactly pulled on his heartstrings. A hint of a change in tide was better than the feeling of slowly drowning in stagnant water, he supposed, even if the direction of the change was ambiguous as the nature of the change itself. Unfortunately, it wasn't exactly tugging him in the most favorable of directions, but it was better than no movement at all, and nobody in their right mind had ever cared to claim that Draco Malfoy, of all people, couldn't compartmentalize his emotions in order to attempt to do what needed to be done. Even if he didn't like where he was now headed, it was another step towards completing a goal. A goal which mattered, which he at least thought he understood the importance and nature of, even if it wasn't his own goal.

There would be at least another year before the wedding, before his father's apparent goal to further the Malfoy bloodline was completed, and he'd be spending that time in a place he loathed the thought of returning to. It was a place that he hadn't returned to in years, that was riddled with strikingly terrible memories, and yet he was going to be returning there for the entirety of a school year. Again, he had to force himself to compartmentalize, and in the meantime, a visit to a place far more familiar. It was a place that he shouldn't have been- really, he shouldn't have been, given the reputation it held and the history that it carried for him especially, never mind the appearance of his presence there all together, and yet it wasn't a rarity. No, this- this was normal. Perhaps not for most wizards, most respectable wizards who wouldn't set foot in the area that surrounded it, but Draco wasn't like most wizards. Oh, no, he had never been. Long pale fingers sweeping through his well maintained platinum locks, the young wizard's blue eyes held steady on the space over the cluttered counter, the place where a familiar face should have been. Draco's free hand settled on to the counter, the tips of his fingers impatiently tapping slowly against the hard surface. A shop with less than favorable memories, it was no where near as unpleasant as he could only imagine his next long term destination was going to be, and yet he was still impatient to leave it for that worse fate all the same. "And what of the Bloomslang?" He called out to the man who had left the room, a brow quirking at the question as if the man was still right in front of him. The question wasn't answered immediately, of course- no, Draco and the store's co-owner had a rather complicated history, and the man was making quick work (presumably) of searching through the back room for the first part of the younger wizard's order. However, it did seem to make the man work a bit faster, as Draco heard the movements beyond the wall seem to quicken and an object falling from what didn't sound to be an insignificant height.

A few moments later, however, the older man came scrambling out of the room with a small black box in his hands, an antique piece within itself, though it seemed as if the leather which bound it hadn't been cared for in any sort of meticulous manner in years if ever. Still, the man was gentle in placing it down on the counter all the same. "Here we are, young Mr. Malfoy," the familiar man began, "here's your order, as requested. There are no Bloomslang skins, however, I am afraid. I am expecting a few new sheds, however, in a week or two, perhaps-"

Draco resisted the urge to roll his eyes or sneer at Mr. Borgin, instead settling for cutting him off before he was subjected to the man's ramblings. "I won't be available then, I suppose this will just have to do." Setting a pile of nine Galleons on the counter, Draco reached beside him to his black case, undoing the clasps before setting the small box he had just purchased inside of it and lifting it once more. He spared no goodbyes for the man he had been speaking to, instead turning and making his way towards the door, stopping only briefly to admire a small masquerade-looking mask that was still unfamiliar to him despite the visits he had made to Borgin and Burkes throughout the years, before finally slipping out of the old shop and on to the familiar street. In some ways, it always felt like he belonged there. The dark antiquities and potions had always interested him, as did the history of the area, in a way. He looked the same as most wondering the alley as well, really- his suit was black and void of colorful accents, and he had an air of clandestine behavior about him. He blended in, belonged in Knockturn Alley more than most there, really, if his past and the mark that he still carried were considered. Yet, for all of the ways he fit in, he also stuck out. Not in just the sort of way that Draco always stuck out, with his appearance and confidence and expensive clothes. No, it was far more complex than that in the moment, even if it wasn't always there and he so often seemed such an appropriate addition, and it could so likely be explained by the way he moved with such direction in the familiar path to Diagon Alley. Normally it would be apparition, the most obvious way in and out of such a place, but not now. No, today he wouldn't be returning home. He'd be going to another destination entirely.

Diagon Alley was bustling, it seemed, as it always was this time of year. It was the last day before all of the little witches and wizards would make their way to the platform, something that Draco remembered all too well and had been so certain he would never be repeating for himself. Oh, how things had changed since then. Keeping his case close to his side, Draco allowed himself the chance to glance at the state of things as he made his way in the direction of the route to the train station. The cobblestone path was so busy that it was only too easy to merge in to the crowd as he walked, eyes trailing the familiar store fronts. Amanuensis Quills, Flourish and Blotts, Rosa Lee Teabag, Broomstix; it was the sight of the storefront that displayed the newest broom model that captured the wizard's imagination for a moment, taking him back to thoughts of his own years as Slytherin Seeker, and kept his attention for precisely the length of time it took for him to mindlessly walk right in to someone. Granted, it wasn't exactly a full-body collision, but it was still a full-step accidental shoulder-first plowing in to a smaller figure that he certainly wasn't expecting, causing Draco to stop immediately and turn, glancing back at the person he had just ran in to. What he found...it wasn't exactly what he had been expecting. She was a young woman, small in frame- a brunette beauty to be certain, but it admittedly wasn't her appearance that immediately caught his attention and made his brows shoot up before furrowing. She was holding a great gray owl- that, that was an animal that was all too easy for Draco to identify, a normal sight within the world of wizards and certainly so close to the owl emporium. It wasn't the owl that captured his attention, really, though he noticed it long enough to understand what exactly it was, but rather the animal that was clinging on to her. It was something that Draco was completely unfamiliar with, something that didn't even look vaguely familiar to him. Odd, Draco would have to deem the creature at first glance, an assertion that certainly carried a bit of weight given just how much Draco had been exposed to in his life time. Yes- odd; it seemed as appropriate a description as any right there in that moment, though Draco didn't vocalize such a thought though doing so certainly wasn't beyond him. It took Draco a few moments to take his eyes off of the creature they had fixated on, though that same expression of confusion at seeing something so odd didn't leave him as his eyes returned to the girl the animal was clutching to. "Are you alright?" He asked, the words carrying with them a tone that was softer than the one he had used with Borgin, but still hardly one that could be considered cried for forgiveness for walking in to her as he had. No, it was instead just a simple question- a simple question, aimed towards a very odd looking woman.

xxxxxImage
Image
Image
xxImage
The town of Whitby, England, was a rather strange one. Of course, strange was a relative term, but in so many ways, strange seemed appropriate to many. It was a seaside town in Yorkshire, northern England, but wasn't a bustling city driven mad by tourism like many others that shared so many of its qualities. Rather, it was a small town, with many visitors cautioned from visiting due to the rather unfavorable conditions for reaching the area. It was a town of great history- hell, it's biggest attraction would be the ruined Gothic Whitby Abbey, a seventh century monastery that served as the inspiration for Bram Stroker's Dracula. The town was primarily residential, with most of it's residents having lived there for the entirety of their lives. It was rich in history, history that was being slowly and inevitably eroded as the waves lapped at the the rocks and the brown sand. The coastline was said to have lost a mile to the sea within the last thousand years alone, and low-lying roads that connected the town to civilization beyond its borders were vulnerable to regular flash floods which, when occurring, made the town virtually cut off from its surroundings. It was an odd little town, a strange one, and yet for a family which craved isolation for its children, Whitby seemed like the epitome of home.

The Adelinde family was an old one, with a long history of French origins, and yet the family in its current state, of its current generation, were decidedly British in culture and in heart. For three generations they had made London their home, the traditional magical family working to expand their influence and wealth while keeping their bloodline pure of muggle influence. When the First Wizarding War came, two brothers were faced with a decision. One, the elder brother, was seduced by the Dark Lord's mission, all too eager to serve as a Death Eater, a decision which would land him in Azkaban for nearly a decade before his death within those terrible walls. The younger brother, however, was a man with a young son and a beautiful wife who he positively adored; he was a man who put family above ideology, escaping the pressure to join those macabre ranks and deciding instead to move his family to the small and isolated town of Whitby to relative safety. Much had changed for the family since then. They had two daughters, another wizarding war passed them by, the family once more staying out of the conflict due to their own self interest. Their son had married a pure blooded witch of their choosing the summer after he graduated from Hogwarts as a Slytherin prefect, the young couple going on to have two sons shortly after, and the patriarch of the Adelinde family going on to become the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, one of the most powerful positions within the British Ministry. Life for the family had change immensely over the last few decades, as had the wizarding world that they lived in, but for one member in particular, it almost sometimes felt as if nothing had changed in the entirety of her life.

Born and raised in the isolated beach-side estate, Rosie Adelinde didn't exactly get out much. The youngest of the Adelinde children, her brother was already just a few years from finishing his time at Hogwarts when she was born. Her sister was closer to her own age, but at eighteen years of age, Rosie couldn't remember the time when her sister wasn't a students at Hogwarts as well. Her father was a career man who spent most of his days far away from Whitby, his job instead requiring him to spend much of his day in London, sometimes even staying in the city for days at a time without apparating home during the time when the trials and structural clean up were so monumental. So, mostly, it was just Rosie and her mother in the large home. Rosie would divide most of her days between receiving basic lessons from her mother while they drank what seemed to be endless quantities of tea, playing alone outside in the cold water under the often overcast skies, and spending hours in her favorite room of the house- the library, a room off of her bedroom which magic allowed to exist in a far smaller exterior space than it would seem, reading old books of spells and histories, curses and hexes. It was nothing she could personally practice herself, of course, not without a wand- but the books intrigued her fiercely, allowing her an understanding she wouldn't otherwise have and offering a venue for her interests to grow and develop.

Then, during the times when her father returned home, she would so often spend hours beside him in his study, short legs draped over the dark leather of the old chesterfield chaise lounge, her eyes still locked on to pages of a book she had retrieved from the library as her young mind tried to comprehend what it was that she was reading. Once her father was finished with the work he would take home, the man would wave his wand and have that chaise lounge that his daughter loved so much moved over to settle in front of his desk and the two would spend at least an hour playing wizarding chess before Rosie's mother would declare dinner ready, and after they would eat Rosie was allowed an hour before she needed to get ready for bed, only to repeat the process day after day for much of the year. If Rosie was to leave the estate during most of the year, it was usually only in a small day trip to the town to visit the shops. Certainly there were other visits occasionally- her sister in law often brought her nephews over, and sometimes Rosie and her mother even visited them in their flat in London. Summers and Christmas were more exciting, of course, when Ezra would be home and the family would spend a few days in London or an old family home in the French countryside, but the vast majority of her life had been monotonous and within the intricate cast iron gates of the Whitby estate. That had been her life, but things were changing.

Green eyes flickering down to the small black ballet flats that covered her feet, they quickly shifted to the ground beneath them, focusing on the way the sidewalk seemed so oddly cracked. Her eyes moved about the uneven surface, the unfamiliar crevices, remaining so absently fascinated by the sight until the sound of a familiar voice called her back to the present. "Rosie, love, come now. We must be going." The words seemed to snap her out of whatever ill-timed trance she had seemed to caught herself in, the young girl's head snapping up to meet the gaze of the much older man. His face was soft but held a sort of understanding impatience she knew well, and that seemed so oddly appropriate to her as she looked up at the tall man in the suit.

"Coming, father." Rosie didn't hesitate before she answered, pushing herself from the side of the building she had been leaning against before moving to join him. The sudden move caused the single thick French fishtail braid that held her long brunette locks together to tap against her back, the soft fabric of her black skirt to brush up against her legs. The eleven year old girl was quick to return to her father's side, immediately feeling the warmth of his touch resting flat against her upper back. Her eyes remained on the man for another moment before a sudden loud noise prompted her to jump a bit, vaguely startled, before immediately searching for the visible sign of the cause of it. It only took a second or two before she already managed to locate it with absolute certainty. Dark brows raising, Rosie watched as her older sister sister made her way towards the others in what could most certainly not be described as a graceful manner. The tall girl had caught the edge of her heel or something, it seemed, on the side of the sidewalk before dropping a black bag hard on to the ground before stumbling her way forward only to narrowly avoid a fall. The sight prompted her father to quickly move forward in an attempt to aid his daughter, but Rosie didn't move an inch. Rather, her hand clasped quickly over her own mouth with no actual attempt to hold it tight enough to muffle any sort of noise, a quiet laugh escaping her lips. "You look sloshed again, Ezzie," she called out to her far older sister, a smirk settling on to her lips even as her laughter ceased.

The older girl looked up as soon as she took her father's hand to steady herself, eyes narrowing but tone playful and teasing as she quickly responded to her little sister. "Merlin knows I need to be to deal with you all year," she shot back, the banter all too familiar between the two siblings. It was all in good fun, of course. The sisters loved each other unquestionably, coming from a tight-knit family where taking care of each other was stressed, but for all of the love that the sisters shared, banter and teasing was a part of their relationship since Rosie was young- well, even younger.

The words only made Rosie's smirk grow, though her eyes raised to her father. "Will they even let us on the train if Ezzie finds herself unable to walk?" She asked, the banter between the two girls causing a quiet chuckle to escape the mans lips.

"Behave, you two," he warned warmly, lifting the cage with Ezra's old barred owl and handing it to his oldest daughter. "Now, I know your mother sent her love and instructions." Their mother was back in their seaside home, watching her grandsons for the week, but the goodbyes certainly hadn't been brief between them. Yet here they were, in London after staying the night in her father's terraced London home, and Rosie realized with a sense of nervousness eclipsed by excitement, that this was it. "You two will be prompt, there will be no apparating," he addressed Ezra, the young woman looking less than pleased with the instruction but giving no hint of verbal displeasure, "and you will not be making any detours." The last instruction was clearly meant for the younger girl, who's eyes widened and smirk dropped after hearing the words.

"But I thought-" the girl began, brows furrowing together as her heart began to pound in her chest, disappointment threatening to claw its way from her stomach.

"I know what you thought, Rosie, but we have already discussed this. You are not to go there under any circumstances, not now and absolutely not alone."

"But I won't be alone, Ezzie would be there. We wouldn't be late, I promise, if I could just go in to-"

"Rosie," her father was quick to cut her off once more, "I'm sorry, but you are not to go to Knockturn Alley. Not today, at least. You will be going straight to Ollivanders, and then promptly to Hogwarts Express. Is that clear?" His voice had turned more stern as he spoke, but as he looked down to his youngest child, his face softened a bit and he leaned down and lowered his voice as he spoke to his daughter. "I understand you want to go there, but it is not safe for a young girl, and there are far too many prying eyes. Your mother will not have you there, not now, and neither will I. When you're a bit older we can go, I promise."

The gnawing disappointment that clung to Rosie started to dissipate with the words, her narrowed eyes lighting up a bit. "You promise?" She questioned, needing to hear the words again. If her father promised, he wouldn't back out of it, and she would be able to go. Maybe around Christmas, she mused hopefully, as she awaited the answer.

The skepticism brought a small smile back to the mans face. "I promise," he confirmed. "Now, don't pout, love. Remember, be excited. You're getting your wand today, and finally getting to head off and join the house. You'll love the common room, it's not unlike home if my old mind isn't failing me," he teased. It was odd, perhaps, how certain the family was that Rosie would be sorted in to House Slytherin. Perhaps that confidence would seem unmerited to most, but to her family, there wasn't a doubt in the world. She was thought to be clever, perhaps too clever for her own good at times. She had ambition, determination, and clear signs of a healthy sense of self preservation. Even more than that, she had been drawn to learning about the dark arts more than anyone in her family ever had been, a trait that wasn't necessarily something that defined all Slytherins but certainly didn't aid ruling out the house being the most appropriate place for her. In truth, no one would know where she would be sorted until the ceremony, but there wasn't a single real worry in the family that she would be sorted in to any other house than the one her family had been sorted in to for generations.

The thought of finally being able to have her own wand and learn how to use it was one that succeeded in lifting her mood entirely once more, and she even offered a small smile as her father but his hand on her shoulder. "I'll see you and your sister soon, alright? As soon as the tournament starts. Try not to get in to too much trouble in the meantime?" He teased, and when his youngest daughter nodded, he let out a chuckle. "Brilliant. You will love it there," he assured her. "Oh, and before I forget, you may wish to take a peak in to your bags when you arrive. I may have slipped in a present or two," the man winked, the words bringing an excited smile to Rosie's lips. Her father pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead before standing up straight once more, turning his attention to his older daughter. His goodbyes lasted only minutes longer, telling Ezra to take care of her sister and herself, and that he had all possible confidence in her that she would be entering her name in the Triwizard Tournament and would undoubtedly be chosen, that he was proud and looked forward to seeing her soon. It was a conversation that Rosie quickly zoned out for, her goodbyes first with her mother and now with her father wrapping up leaving her excited to finally get her hands on a wand. That being said, the goodbyes went by far quicker with her father than they had with her mother, a woman who hadn't taken well to the idea of her youngest child leaving home already, even if it was only to go to Hogwarts for a good length of time during the year.

Another kiss and another goodbye and the two girls were making their ways down the muggle ridden streets, separating themselves from their father. It was a sort of odd feeling for Rosie, undoubtedly, but homesickness hadn't been felt yet. Instead, she was still focusing on the excitement of getting her wand and being able to finally use magic in a manner that was more extensive than the accidental and unmanageable underage magic that all young witches and wizards were exposed to- the type of things that told magical parents that their child wasn't a squib. Rosie bit down on her lower lip out of habit as her small fingers wrapped more tightly around the handle of the single black case she was carrying- it was small and light enough for her to have no problems easily carrying it, her father's magic making it practically as light as a feather, the size of the case misleading as magic allowed the interior to expand a bit for more storage as needed. "Ezzie?" Rosie was a small girl, even for her age, and had to tilt her head up quite a bit to look up at her sister as they walked. "How far is it?" She asked, "And why does father say you can't apparate? Didn't you get your license? Not that I would want you to, I've seen you walking but-" she began, only to be cut off by her older sister.

"Ha ha, absolutely hilarious," Ezra teased her sister without sparing her a glance. "It's right through here, come," her sister nodded, the tall brunette leading the eleven year old in through the doors of a pub that only looked vaguely familiar to the younger girl who's green eyes continued to scan the new environment as they walked.

It was a path that looked less and less familiar as they continued, and the pattern that the eighteen year old pressed against the brick wall in the back was something that Rosie was certain she had never seen before. Yet, of course, the wall opened up and Rosie was all too willing to step inside to the far more familiar cobblestone covered Diagon Alley. Already, her eyes were scanning the stores that she could see, looking for the one store they were here to go to before they were to head off to Hogwarts. Still, from what she could see, she couldn't see what she was looking for. Naturally, she was quick to turn back to her sister, "Which way is it? I don't remember." The previous year she had made a trip to Diagon Alley with her mother, but it was almost a year ago now and that seemed like forever ago, any bit of the layout that the girl had memorized in her previous visits easily distorted through time. The older girl pointed in a direction, and with her finger went Rosie's attention, the girl removing her gaze from her sister once she had a direction to assign it to. The older girl brought a gentle hand to the younger girl's back, leading her through the crowds as Rosie was all too willing to comply. It was a short walk for the girls before Rosie finally spotted the sign that she remembered her mother pointing on on their most recent trip. "I see it! I wonder what kind of wands they'll have," Rosie mused excitedly.

The absent musings of the eleven year old caused a short laugh to escape Ezra's lips. "I doubt you'll have a problem there. It's a proper mess in there," she paused. "Why don't you go in now? I have to go make a run in to Madam Malkin's to pick up an order. It's right over there, see? Not too far?"

Rosie's brows furrowed. "You're not coming?" She asked. "Am I to meet you in the robe shop, then?"

Ezra shook her head, quickly dismissing the thought. "I shouldn't be long at all. You'll still be waving wands around by the time I've returned. If I'm not, though, I'll be right there," she motioned, giving the younger girl a small smile. "Alright?" When Rosie gave a decisive nod, Ezra's smile grew. "Brilliant, now go on," she encouraged.

Rosie didn't need to be told twice and didn't hesitate before moving to close the gap between herself and the store. The rest of the vendors and members of the magical community were easy enough to ignore, the only thing giving her pause was right as she was about to walk the door and saw the strangest looking woman. Even that only caused her to furrow her brows as she walked past, Rosie's feet continuing to move until she was swinging the old door open and stepping inside of the strange shop which she had been waiting to visit for years. Once she stepped inside, her eyes were already scanning the surrounding area, as if to see is any wands were to be so easily on display. She quickly learned that wasn't the case, her eyes scanning the piles of boxes that lined the walls as her brows raised, taking in the sight for a moment before adjusting her gaze towards the back of the shop, as if finally reminded that in order to get a wand she'd actually have to see the shop's owner. When it was soon apparent that he was as absent as the visible collection of wands she had been so hoping to see, the brunette bit down on her lower lip once more, gently leaning down to send her light case down on to the floor. Hands free, she allowed her eyes to roam around the room once more before finally settling on the only other person in the room, a figure she hadn't given much thought to upon first glance. He was a boy around her age, it seemed, either an incoming first year like herself or a second year- and judging by the fact that he was in a wand shop, she knew, it was far more likely to be the former. Though her eyes settled on him, the thought of introducing herself didn't even cross her mind. Speaking to him, even, didn't cross her mind...until, of course, the young witch spotted movement on his shoulder. Her green eyes were wide at the odd sight, a small smile on her lips as she spoke. "Is that like a chocolate frog? An enchanted twig?" She asked the stranger suddenly, completely disregarding how rude she may have been being.

User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] 002

Post by 76heart » Tue Dec 04, 2018 8:42 pm

Image
━━━━━━━━━not a monster━━
Image
━she couldn't love━━━━━━
xxxHow long had it been since her family, the Aubelles, had last walked this Alley, where she stood now? Had it been a hundred years? Three hundred? Two hundred? Had Diagon Alley even been here then, had these shops? Of course it had, there was no way it could not. Her family had left Europe in the late 1600s as word of a new school for witches and wizards called Ilvermorny in the "new" world across the ocean spread, and they never once looked back. Besides her great grandfather, who had come to places throughout the country and its neighbors during Grindelwald's horrible reign, she had been the first to return here, and her brother had been the third. She had come here before to study some creatures across the continent that could not be found in the one she called home. It was where she had been for most of the months this year and a few of the last, in fact. She had only just gotten back from the trip two weeks before, to help Percy and her family prepare for their coming here, to Hogwarts. She had been staying with an elderly woman who lived alone in the forest, near a small family of unicorns at the start, to study the three creatures she had been able to find out in the wild of such a rare and majestic breed. She had such respect for the equines; they were gentle and fair once their trust was earned, and while she had only been able to stay with the old woman for a month and a half before she had to head toward her next destination, it was a time she would always treasure. She had briefly gone to a place with several Knarls after, in an attempt to learn more about them and possibly find the one who lived with her a friend of his own kind, but Hubert had refused each and every one she introduced him too, which truthfully, she should have expected. Like the hedgehogs they were often mistaken for, from what she had studied in person and read, Knarls weren't the fondest of having companions either, and Hubert was already quite the grouchy, difficult, little fellow. She had gotten him at the same time she had received her Snallygaster, during a visit to Maryland, to learn about and observe the latter. The two of them had been causing quite the panic amongst the no-maj that lived in that area, and they were both sighted too many times for the ministry to cover it up. It didn't help that her Snallygaster, Gastor, was also mighty fond of cameras and attention, which led the beast to be so bold as to pose for the no-maj news reporters, and cause quite the large panic. Hubert on the other hand, had destroyed several blocks of gardens after a kind old lady had offered him a little snack, because instead of accepting it like the hedgehog he thought he was, he, like most Knarls, saw the offering as her luring him into a cruel trick of capture. When she noticed the ministry in the area was rather exasperated about it all, she offered to take them with her, and they happily allowed her to rid the town of the very small, and very large menace, that had broken their precious Statue of Secrecy a multitude of times. After the trip to see the Knarls, she had gone to Asia for the quickest of times to see if she could help out with a water demon situation involving a Kappa, before soon leaving after quickly finding out there wasn't much she could do, largely due to the strong language barrier. Finally, where she had stayed for the remainder of the few months before she had returned home, was with an old friend she had stayed with before, the man who had given her her first two Occamies, Carmine and Carlisle, a young breeding pair. It had been wonderful to see him again, and introduce him to the children of the two Occamy that she had kept, and hadn't found perfect homes for. It had also been lovely to see his creatures as well, a wise old Horned Serpent, the mascot of her Ilvermorny house, and a young Runespoor that had grown so much since she had last seen it. The two magical serpents were the only creatures he kept, and he loved them dearly. The rest of the creatures that came his way either found homes, or were released into their natural habitats, which she quite enjoyed helping him with; it allowed her to see more if the world, and experience the bittersweet happiness that was saying goodbye to an old friend, and watch them find their home, somewhere they would be truly happy. He ran a rescue of sorts, which was what had caused her to stay with him to begin with, and it allowed her to learn so much about such a vast variety of creatures, and how to care for them and nurse them back to health if they were injured or harmed, or just in need of some tender love and care. Before they parted the first time she had met him as well, he had also given her two Jobberknolls, which she promptly named Fidelius and Fidella, after the Fidelius Charm, because until their death, they were unable to make a sound, and every sound they had ever heard was emitted in reverse upon their death, which wasn't too different to the charm, which held all who knew the hidden subject, save for the secret keeper, silent about it with all except those the keeper had told too, until there was no longer a keeper to keep the secret safe. The two blue birds had been excited to see him again too, and more than eager to show how well they were doing now, after he rescued them shortly before she arrived, from a person keeping them in abhorrent conditions for their feathers, which were often used in memory potions. At one point during her most recent visit there, she had also been stuck caring for a newly hatched baby dragon for a week until it could be safely taken to a colony of it's kind, which had been an experience to say the least. She still had no idea how she came away unscarred or horribly burned, and largely unscathed save for some scratches on her hands and arms from it's tiny claws. She planned to go back there someday too, after she learned more from going out in the world on her own, and spent time learning and teaching at Hogwarts, of course. Nevertheless, his home was one she knew well, and it was a great comfort to go there. She didn't know these countries, or anywhere else she had been, as well as she knew her home though, and the world within her bag, which she knew even better than that.
xxxBesides her home, the only other place in New York that she knew as well was a small town known as Crestwood that the close family of her father lived in. Leading up to it was a road that wound it's way through trees like a winding, twisting snake, a difficult road to drive that had been entertaining when she was a child, something fun that she looked forward to whenever her parents told her they were heading over there from a visit. It jutted off from a road within Yonkers, nod truly, was quite the beautiful place. The woods around it were lush and well cared for, and the houses themselves, while older in style, were no less stunning. She still had yet to see a town with more gorgeous homes lined along a thin twisting road. They were all sorts of colors, from yellow, to pink, to green or bright red, or a soft robin's egg blue. Some even had old metal cartons used for delivering bottles of milk outside, with intricate swirls lining the corners. Every lawned was very well groomed, yet still natural in appearance, looking as if it grew there on it's own, rather than being placed by someone's hand, and even though it was a place for the wealthy, there were no outlandish fences surrounding a single home to protect their precious jewels, and the houses looked like those for a family, or someone old, simple, with nothing blaring to be seen. They were homey, quaint, each unique and different from the one next door, and a joy to drive by. There was even a small library within the town, tan in color, with a curved roof reminding her of a Hobbit's home in The Shire, looking as if it was made of thousands of tiny stones. She had only been there a few times, but she enjoyed the welcoming feel it brought once inside. The houses were fun to explore too, like little jungles made just for a child, and she could still remember how enjoyable her uncle's house had been. The stairs were curved, and there were so many interesting places, and hidden rooms to find and play in. There was one up the stairs with tiled floor, white squares with black diamonds in between their edges, and it had been filled with so many costumes. She could picture the colors, bright magentas and yellows, blues, and fancy hats or ones imitating a bear she had found so silly. That room was still her favorite, and she hoped that some day soon she could see it again, and see if how much it had changed. She doubted it had changed a single bit, apart from accumulating more interesting costumes and frivolous articles of clothes, but she still was curious to see how it looked now, and if it was different from what she remembered. It reminded her a bit of Diagon Alley too if she thought about it, with what some people wore and what she saw in the enticing windows of the shops, and for the home of a family of No-Maj who had never once known the world of magic without being oliviated by her mother right after because the introduction had not gone well, it certainly felt more than a bit wizardy, and quite magical. She missed it. Hopefully after this year of Hogwarts, she could go home and see it again, before traveling to some place new for the remainder of the summer, to meet and study even more magical creatures.

xxxTruthfully, none of this should seem so new to her; the shop her family owned was hardly different from the ones lining this alley, and the street their shop and home was on was not at all unlike this one, just for no-maj, rather than wizards and witches like this fantastical street. Even the magical shops shouldn't seem so strange to her, given her family had a magical part to their shop as well, with many assortment of enchanted items and magical items and artifacts that had been sold to them, unwanted, all hidden in a room in the back that only wizards were able to access. Yet, even with that all, every piece of this was still so terribly unfamiliar, and impossibly new. If the wondrous array of colors donning the many magical shops and their items were replaced with dreary bricks and mediocre things one could find most anywhere, and the enticing and unique window displays were replaced with rather average and plain storefronts with little effort to their name, and a wide cobblestone road was stretched between the two rows of stores on either side, truly Diagon Alley would look nearly identical to the street of her family's shop and home, but they still didn't do a thing to change how new this all was, how unfamiliar and strange; because it wasn't the same at all, it was different, so very different, and intriguing all the same. She didn't want this to be like her home either, where their shop seemed to be the only one with any magic and heart still left within it's walls. Leona didn't want anywhere else to be drained of it's splendor like that, especially not some place like Diagon Alley, so filled with life and magic, and an energy she couldn't explain. She quite liked it here, even if it was all so strange and new to her, and while a street of magical shops was still something she wasn't entirely used to, it was near to a place of the likes she was no stranger to. That place was Knockturn Alley, a rather shady and untrustworthy alley most would probably desk sketchy and somewhere to avoid. She didn't find it so terrible, it intrigued her in fact, and was someplace she really wanted to go, but her mother had profusely forbid her to go there with Percy, and she couldn't risk him following her to it if she went there and didn't return by the time he was finished getting his wand. It wasn't someplace their mother wanted her son anywhere near, nor her daughter, but the woman knew that Leona was an adult, and could make her own choices, and knew how to protect herself if need be. She also by now knew how to handle herself in those types of places, as it was often where she had to go when she needed something for her creatures, or information, or a location of where she could go next, as keeping and caring for magical creatures, especially ones on the XXXX Ministry Classification for beasts, was not at all a commonplace thing, and she did not fancy the idea of going to some fancy man of the law in a carefully preened suit who didn't at all care for her beloved creatures whenever she needed from them. She would much rather go to someone a bit dubious, that cared in some twisted way, than a man or woman of the ministry or some official place that lacked any ounce of empathy or compassion that was greatly needed in the care of beasts. It was harder to make sure the Knarl quills, Jobberknoll feathers, Occamy eggshells, and other things she sold were going to a good purpose as opposed to a nefarious one with the way she went, or if the things she desired were aquired humanely, but at least they were guaranteed to have what she needed the moment she did, unlike the more moral option, which had people asking far too many questions that she didn't have the time for and certainly couldn't afford if any one of her creatures were in a state of emergency. Bargaining and convincing the people she did go to was a bit more difficult than she liked, but if enough coin or silver eggshells, or something exotic and rare that was in high demand was waved in front of their noses, they would almost always take the deal. By now she had managed to have a system worked out with most of the people she went to at least, a regular price set in place for what she most often requested from them, and so far, it had worked out quite well, and her creatures were still alright, healthy, and thriving. She just had to be extra careful with the goblin she sold the no longer needed Occamy eggshells to; he was trickier than her other contacts and buyers, and whenever she wasn't selling the eggshells to him for quite the high price, his deals suddenly began to get much more demanding, and closer and closer to a price she refused to pay. She had needed to do things she wished she had never done that went against her strongest of morals to get the needed things for her creatures before, but he was asking for live creatures whenever she needed something from him now, as opposed to something they naturally dropped and no longer needed, like discarded quills and feathers, and that was something she would never give him. She didn't trust the goblin enough to give a creature to him, that he could easily sell to some vicious monster. She loved animals too much to ever even possibly subject them to that fate, or pass them off to some black market dealer who'd stuff them into a cramped cage or handle them incorrectly in a way that hurt. She was beginning to fear that when she most desperately needed something, that would be the only way to get it, and she so hoped that it would never come to that. That would be stoping to lows she would never forgive herself for. At least Knockturn Alley wasn't as likely to have someone like that, or at least she hoped it wasn't. Even if it was, she knew she'd never find him there; she had only ever seen the goblin in New York, in a special bar accessed only through a magical painting on a brick wall, that was like a speakeasy had been trapped in time in there, unchanged since the 1920s, so she would be safe from him here. She enjoyed the place, and it's atmosphere, and the clothing the people within wore that she also donned to blend in, but she wasn't so fond of the deals she had made there, and the way they seemed to grow increasingly more demanding and difficult to meet with her goblin contact, who didn't listen when she gave him a no, and a that will never happen.

xxxSighing quietly, Leona leaned her head lightly against Dewitt's for awhile, only half seeing the people who walked passed, and the buildings her blue gray eyes roamed. Her mind was elsewhere, no longer quite present in the waking world, deep in her memories, thinking of her grandmother. Every time she had a moment where nothing was occupying her mind, her thoughts always seemed to manage to find their way back to her. Her grandmother, the woman and family member she had been closest too, until she had died when Leona was only seven, and everything changed in an instant. When she slept, her grandmother was so often the subject of her thoughts before she went to sleep, if it wasn't the purring of Winks at her feet or in her arms, and now, as she waited for her brother to come back with a wand all his own, with no where to go or nothing particularly special to keep her thoughts on as she tried her hardest not to wander into the Owl Emporium, she was what her mind naturally came to. If she had a free hand and was not holding Godric's cage and clutching it close to her chest, she was sure that her hand would have gone straight to the necklace again as well, making it's way there all on it's own, to the symbol of her grandparents' love. Her grandmother. Her grandfather. Both gone. Her heart fell, even further. She really wished she could remember him better, or at all besides the two pictures of him that she kept on her counter desk within the bag, really. One picture was of him and her grandmother with an arm around each other, standing on either side of her mother with a hand on her shoulders when she was a small child, all of them wearing the happiest of genuine smiles, then shifting to him with a silly face as pictures taken with the cameras of wizards would do. The other was of herself as a baby, with her grandfather on one side in his animagus form of a Jack Russell Terrior, and the old family Crup that had since passed on the other. She was between them, in a frilly little dress she recalled being pink, and the picture moved to show her giving her grandfather a hug, and the Crup coming to lick her cheek. That one was her favorite, because it was proof she had known him for a while, but both showed his essence, his heart, who he was. A man who loved his family dearly, and wanted nothing but to make them smile and have some fun. Percy took after him quite a bit really, if the massive amounts of stories of him being tricky and mischievous were anything to go by, and the fact he would quite often turn into a dog to evade certain things he was required to do by law in the muggle world. She really liked those stories, even if she probably shouldn't. Her parents and grandmother had nothing but the best stories of him to tell though, and she especially loved her grandparents' love story, which she had so often asked her grandmother to repeatedly tell, over and over again. They had met in their first year at Ilvermorny, and even though they ended up in different houses, him in Thunderbird, and her in Pukwudgie, they were instantly inseparable. They were the best of friends, and closer than anyone could ever even begin to imagine or comprehend, and no one could ever tear them apart or get them to leave each other for more than an hour or for sleep. As they grew older, a relationship blossomed between them, and they got even closer than before. The two were always there for each other, and he never left her side while she was going through the loss of her sister, when she ran away with the no-maj girl she had fallen in love with when she was only seventeen, to find some place they could be free to be together, that would accept the love of two women for each other, and a magical and non magical being to be together, that did not forbid it like the skewed and backwards laws in America. Everyone knew they were a couple, and everyone knew they were utterly, and completely in love, which made it even more of a shock to them all when they learned that after graduating together, with plans to marry and start a family, they lost contact with each other, and went their separate ways. She took to pursuing a path of learning more about animals, and magical creatures, and how to care for them while she traveled around, like Newt Scammander, and for a time, thought she had found another who was her one, and got engaged, only for him to turn out to be terrible, and he had been dragged into battles that had never been his to fight, ones he fought for the cowards who caused it all, and didn't even go to fight themselves. After getting an injury in his early forties, he was allowed to leave, and chose his own path, one that wasn't of death and war and devastation, and that was when he found her grandmother again, after showing up outside the place she was working at in Ireland, soaking wet from the pouring rain. They instantly recognized each other, and found out that their love hadn't withered or changed. It was still there, so fresh and powerful, like it had only been growing each and every second all those long and many years. That was the night they had made the blood pact, to always find each other again, and never stop loving each other. Her grandparents married soon after, and then after a few years of getting to know each other again, and learn all they had missed, and how to be together again, they had a child, Leona's mother, and their hearts only grew and grew. Leona wasn't at all sure about having a child someday, but she hoped that she'd find someone with whom she could share that kind of powerful, everlasting, blazing love with. Someone who would become her heart, her world, her everything, and someone who'd she'd become the same thing for. Her other half, the one who completed her, like the rest of her family had found. Like her parents, and her grandparents.

xxx"Dewitt? I wonder what Grandmama would think if she was here, with us." Leona finally spoke, lifting her head from where it leant gently against the Demiguise, and turning to look into his deep, doleful eyes. They were a light brown in color, and filled with an intelligence and light, and a wiseness she could never begin to describe. She raised the hand of her left shoulder, the one he was on, to tickle his chin with her fingers, and then run them through his long, silky fur, as her gaze turned back to the buildings, dancing along the roofs as they stretched upward toward the sky. She missed her grandmother, so, so much, and she so wished that she could be here with them now, seeing herself and Percy off on the train with a loving smile, and gentle wave. She'd only be ninety if she were still alive, still not terribly old for a wizard, and not exactly immobile if she were a no-maj, more than capable of doing such a thing. "I bet she'd love it, don't you? She'd be wanting to hobble into each of the shops, and get to know everyone we passed, and learn their stories so she could tell them to all of us." The corners of her lips took on a sad smile, and her eyes falling down as she held back tears. "She'd be in there with Percy too, I'm sure. Encouraging him and making him laugh and smile, like she always did with me. I wish Percy had gotten to meet her, I've never been able to do her justice with what I tell him, and Mom always seems to choke up when she tries. She was just too special for words, I think. There was this light in her eyes that I've never seen before, and she always seemed young even when she was old. She had so many beautiful stories, and such a wonderful view on the world. I see it in the bag everyday, it's so her, so full of her life, of her love, of her care." A tear finally fell from her blue gray eyes, and Dewitt wiped it away with his hand, watching her with concern. She continued to card her hand through his silky, silver hair, threading her fingers through the long strands. Her grandmother had been like no one else, like no one she had ever seen or heard of. Everything was bright and wonderful in her eyes, and even when times grew darkest, to her, there was no dark. She had always been able to find the light, find the good, in anything and everything, and that was something Leona missed the most, just the beautiful outlook and view she had on absolutely everything. She had a talent for weaving stories, and telling them in a way that would enrapture anyone who heard, and she carried the playfulness of her grandfather, because he no longer could. She had poured everything into the bag Leona had, and made it the perfect world for so many creatures, with a habitat and home of nearly every kind, with everything they could wand, and a but she built by hand, all on her own. Every piece of it was her, her love, her work, and it so strongly showed. The light blue of the bag was her favorite color, and something she had sewn together and enchanted herself, and only the creatures, and the slight decorating she had done, was Leona's, the rest was entirely her, and Leona loved that so much. Her grandmother was where her love for creatures was from, why she had become a magizoologist, why she was who she was now, and she could only hope that she had done right by her grandmother, that she would be proud if she was watching her now, and proud of the homes she had given her creatures within their world in the bag. "I miss her Dewitt, I miss her so much. I hope she's proud of me wherever she is now. I hope she's happy with what I've done, with what I'm doing, and how I care for you. I really wish I could see her again, to tell her how much I love her one more time and how much I miss her everyday. I wish you could see her again too, I know how much you loved her." Leona held back a sob that threatened to tear itself free as she spoke, her voice shakier than it had been. She missed her grandmother so terribly, more than words could ever describe, and she so wished that the older woman was hear, and she so hoped that she'd be proud if she was. Dewitt watched her with his head tilted, and a deep understanding in his dark brown eyes with depths that never appeared to end, as she took a moment to pause, and stifle the tears that dangerously taunted her with the threat of spilling from her eyes. She didn't want to cry, not here, not in front of so many people, and especially in front of Percy, when she needed to be strong for him. She needed to be his rock, his anchor, someone whom he could borrow strength from and use to gather his courage, and he couldn't do that if she was crying over a grandmother he never got to meet, or to know. That only sent another pang to her heart, and she took a shaking breath to ward off the tears. Dewitt shifted on her shoulder, a hand coming to her face to try and wipe away tears and comfort her, but there were no tears to dry and brush away. Instead, she offered him a weak smile, and moved her hand to hold his, and give it a gentle squeeze. He was such a kind creature, so caring, like her grandmother had been, and she loved him so much. She was so grateful for his companionship, and his understanding. He wasn't new to these moments at all, he was probably quite used to them in all honesty, and yet, he was still so gentle, and did his best to help her feel better, and offered her love and someone to talk to in return. If her arms were free, and she wasn't holding a cage, she was almost certain that he would give her a hug, like he usually did when the sadness of losing her grandmother became too strong and overwhelmed her, and if Winks was with them too, he would likely be purring up a storm on her lap, pawing at her sleeve, making sure she was okay. She loved him too. They were both her closest friend, and her little saviors when things grew too dark.
xxxShe was about to open her mouth to thank him, now that a few moments had passed, and she was once again, for the most part composed, but before she had the chance, something, or more correctly, someone, walked right into her, and she was more than a little surprised, with a quiet gasp leaving her lips as she very nearly dropped the owl's cage she was holding, and her hand slipped free from Dewitt's, wrapping back around the cage so she wouldn't drop it. It hadn't been a full on collision, not quite- or at least she didn't think it was, as she hadn't been exactly paying enough attention to see-, more of a someone walking into her with their shoulder first, but nevertheless, it had startled her, and she whirled around to see who had just walked into her, only needing a moment to find who as they had stopped to look back at who they had just plowed into, the hair pulled up into a high pony tail upon her head fell over one of her shoulders with the movement.

xxxIt was a man. A young man had been the one to walk into her, a very handsome man, not much older than herself. His hair was a light blond, nearly white, if not completely, but disguised as having the faintest of blond hues with the Alley's lighting and that of the sun, and his skin was pale. Paler than most, but still healthy, and not the paleness of sickness, or pore health. His eyes were a blueish gray, not too different from her own, seeming to be focused on the beast in her shoulder, but his reminded her of storm clouds, in the moment's glimpse she got of them before she caught sight of what he wore. He wore a suit, all black, and likely tailored to fit him perfectly, and he carried a case. She wouldn't be at all surprised if he turned out to be someone with money. The suit was rather somber, and yet, smart, and suiting. It wasn't normally something she would claim looked nice on anyone; it felt too formal, too brooding, too opulent and pristine, and it reminded her too much of a man she once knew that she cared not to think of, but it suited the man before her quite well. She would even call it quite dashing on him, or handsome. She liked it. She didn't blame him or hold anything hostile for bumping into her either, that sort of thing happened, especially on busy streets. She was sure it was accidental, and that he hadn't meant to at all. For a moment, she wondered what a man like him was doing here, but before she could ask, without a single thought as to it being an incredibly odd thing to ask a stranger she had never before met without even first offering her name, he finally spoke up, and her cheeks immediately heated up a flushed a bright rose, eyes widening as she realized he had probably caught her staring at him. Oh god, he had asked her if she was alright, and she had just been staring. At the same time though, thankfully drawing her attention from the possible embarrassment and awkward conversation that would be, as the man's voice reached her ears, she watched from the corner of her eyes as Dewitt's eyes change to a bright blue, a sign he was receiving a vision of the most likely outcome of the nearest future, before he faded fully from her sight. That was rather normal for him though, and even more normal and common for every other Demiguise, so she gave it no more thought, and instead kept her attention fully on the man, trying not to think of how rude he must think she was for staring at him after she turned and saw who he was. His accent was thick, though here she supposed it wasn't considered an accent, here it was just a natural dialect, and hers would be considered the accent. He had asked her a question though, so it would probably be smart to answer before she took too long and seemed even ruder than she probably already did. She took a heartbeat to compose herself, and will the words to from within her mind, and then opened her mouth to speak. "I'm fine, thank you. Are you? I hope I haven't hurt you. I'm so sorry, I shouldn't have been so lost in thought. It's a crowded street." Leona asked, her expression clouding with a look of concern, gray blue eyes searching his form for any sign of injury, or pain. Her words were dripping with concern, almost rushing from her lips as her eyes filled with worry. She began to take a tentative step forward, like she would when checking over a creature to make sure they were alright, before stopping herself, and flushing, as a new thought suddenly pushed it's way forward, and her eyes widened, and snapped up to his own. "Oh! I should probably give you my name. I'm Leona Deorne," She set the owl's cage down lightly on the ground as she spoke, and then proceeded to offer him her hand to shake before continuing. People greeted one another here like that, right? Or was it only like that in America? God, she was abysmal at interacting with people, wasn't she? "and this-" Leona came to a full stop as she felt creature still on her shoulders move on her back, crossing to the opposite shoulder, and her brows suddenly furrowed, a look of deep thought and confusion crossing over her features, followed by a heavy sigh and her head turning to look where she knew his head to be. She still couldn't see him, but she could feel him holding onto her form, and where his legs were, and his tail brushing against her arm, faintly wrapping around it, so it wasn't terribly difficult to pinpoint. "Dewitt darling, come on now, you don't need to do this, and it's a bit rude to just go invisible while I'm trying to introduce you. Isn't it? You know better than that. You're safe, I'll protect you, you know that, and this man seems alright. I trust him. He's okay." Her voice was soft, a hushed whisper, gentle, and nurturing. She leaned her head toward Dewitt for another brush of her nose to his as he slowly faded back into view, tentatively watching the man. She followed his gaze back to him, and offered an apologetic look, the hand of the shoulder Dewitt was now on coming to run comfortingly along his fur in gentle strokes. The blush likely only grew darker on her cheeks as she looked back to him, into his eyes, and she imagined that she only managed to make herself look even more insane, or annoying, as he likely only wanted to ask if she was alright out of politeness and pleasantries, before getting a simple fine and going back on his way. Fuck. "Forgive me, I'm really sorry, I guess he's a little overwhelmed, or saw something he didn't like. This is Dewitt, my Demiguise. He can turn invisible as you already saw, and like the rest of his kind, he can see the most probable outcome of the nearest and most likely future. I really hope he hasn't unnerved you, he tends to do that quite a lot with strangers who see him do that." Leona apologized, and then explained, sincerely hoping that she hadn't just managed to mess this all up. The first person she had interacted with, and clearly seen, of course had to be the first person she messed up talking with. What if he was someone important, or was in a rush to be somewhere important where he was needed, and she had just greatly offended him or made him horribly late? There was something special about him, something she couldn't quite detect, like there was a thick, sturdy wall blocking her out, but there was something special to him all the same, and a part of her wanted to know what, while the rest knew she never could. She had likely messed up to horribly for that, and how likely was it that she would ever run into someone she bumped to, or was bumped into by on the street ever again? Why did she have to be such an awkward, flustered, likely incredibly impolite mess with the first person besides Percy that she had spoken with since arriving here? Why did she have to be that mess with him, when he seemed special, and not at all normal, or like anyone else?

Image
━mischievous and brave━━
Image
━━━━━━━and quidditch━━━
xxxPatience had never been something he was good with, nor could it be a thing that could ever be used to describe Percy. He was always too impatient with things, the type of kid to tap his fingers upon a surface or drum them when he was bored and itching to do something, much to the distaste of his sister, who actually was very patient, and preferred quiet, not the incessantly annoying sounds he made because he just wanted to get up and run around and do something. He had never been good at waiting, that was more his sister's, and the rest of his family's thing. He wanted action, to do something, to go. Seconds felt like minutes to him whenever he was forced to wait, and then in turn those minutes felt like hours that stretched into even more hours and never seemed to ever end. It was excruciating for him sometimes, and he was getting to that point now. What was he even supposed to do while he waited? Pull out all the wand boxes and look at them and make it hell for Mr. Ollivander to clean up? Clearly that wasn't it, that was awful and mean and even more unnecessary. He wished he wasn't so impatient things, and itching to just get up and move and finish things and speed through them, but it was some thing he had never been able to help, or truly push away no matter how hard he tried, and right now he just wanted to get his wand, not break anything more, head to the train, get to Hogwarts, and get himself sorted into Gryffindor so it's worries and anxieties could go away and he could be done with them for good, never having to deal with them again. He knew Leona would just tell him to take a deep breath and calm and try and slow his mind down if she saw him now and was with him to see his impatience growing as he waited for the old man to return with a wand that might not even be the right fit, and he knew his sister was right, and that he should try it, but it just never worked. That kind of stuff had just never worked for him in any sense, and he knew it didn't help his sister either, especially deep breathes because they caused a train wreck in his mind, but she was already patient, and rarely had a need to even consider such things. He on the other hand, was not so luck to posses any form of patience, and instead, had to find something to occupy himself with to relax before he started tapping something and annoying absolutely everyone who could hear. At least being impatient was better than feeling so nervous? He hoped it was anyway, and at least impatience was something he was familiar with, and knew well, as opposed to nerves and anxiety when he was normally surrounded by a confidence and slight ego he really shouldn't posses when he was only eleven. Heaving a sigh, Percy really began to wish there was some place he could sit down so he could swing his legs and pass the time by doing that at the very least, so he was stuck standing, and his choices were really explore and probably break something and just cause more damage and not help anything, stand there silently and wait, or have a conversation with a green stick figure that couldn't even respond, and look absolutely insane to everyone but his sister who glanced in the shop's windows, or came in to purchase themselves a wand. Personally, he'd rather stay silent and let his thoughts run over him like mad than cause more trouble for his sister and the nice old man, and really just not make a good impression in this new place by talking to a stick. Maybe he could try counting things? No, that would work, that was silly. It didn't help him go to sleep, and it certainly wouldn't help him stop feeling so darn impatient. Maybe he could think about some stories his family had told him? He really enjoyed the ones about Grandpa Jack, maybe thinking of those would work? Everyone who had known him said that he took after him, and that he was even somewhat named after him in a way, because his name had been Perseus, despite going by Jack because of the form he took as an animagus. Was he impatient too? Had he ever been like this at Percy's age? Considering he turned into a dog to get out of responsibilities and things like that, it wouldn't surprise him. It seemed more fun, and definitely sounded like something good to pass the time. He wished he could do that too, and turn into some creature and have fun while he waited, but he also didn't really fancy the idea of transforming into himself, nor did he fancy the process it took to become an animagus to begin with. It took at least a month, and just seemed so meticulous and particular and like it could all be ruined in a single moment and just not worth it, when it wasn't even guaranteed they'd turn into an animal they didn't hate. They became the animal that suited them best, but what if they hated the one that matched them more than any other? It really wouldn't be worth it then, at all, and he wasn't even sure what he'd turn into and become if he tried. And what would happen to his clothes? That had always been a question with shapeshifting things that he never liked a single bit, he didn't know what it was, and he wasn't going to ask someone about it either, and he definitely wasn't going to try and find out for himself. Did the clothes just turn with the person? Or did they fall on the floor where they had been? If it was the former did they turn back with the clothes on? If the clothes didn't stay or came off to begin with, what on earth could they do if they didn't have a trusted person to bring them something to change into so they were decent and could go back and be human again? It all just seemed like a huge mess to him a huge mess he wasn't fond of exploring, or learning more about. Maybe if his grandfather was still alive he wouldn't be feeling so weird about it, but the man had died before he was born, when his sister was only three, so he had never gotten the chance to meet him. His sister didn't remember him at all, and his parents were always too choked up and sad about it to talk about him much. He wished he could have known him, and had fun with him and played some games with him and had loads of fun, but he had been born just a little too late for that, and he had died far too soon. Hopefully someday his mom would consent to showing him some of the memories she had of him in the pensieve they had in their shop, rather than protesting that they keep it free of their memories in case someone ever wanted to buy it from the shop. He doubted anyone ever would, because they were such personal and rare things, so if someone wanted one, they would probably prefer to have it made, rather than buy it from a place where it had been sitting, collecting dust for years, after it was dropped off with nothing more than a note saying that it had never before been used, and that the thought of using it brought back too many painful memories so they were leaving it with them to do with as they wished. Hopefully someday she would see that, and he'd get to see some of what his grandparents were like, through more than just the moving pictures that hung on the walls.

xxxWhat was taking him this long? How hard was it to find a wand when he owned this shop and supposedly remembered every one he had ever sold? Shouldn't he be back by now? Was he just going and making a new one because he was so difficult none of the wands he had already fit him? What if none of them chose him, what if none of the wands liked him, and he ended up without a wand? Or had to go somewhere else to try? No, his wand had to be here, it just had to be, one didn't just make wands for so long and have a family line dedicated to doing such a craft only to have not a single wand to fit someone. One of the wands here had to suit him, and he just had to hope that it wouldn't take too long, and cause him and his sister to miss their train, their one and only ride to Hogwarts, unless she had a way of getting there that she had failed to mention. He was sure she had no other way of getting them there though, unless she knew someone he could take them to Hogwarts that wasn't already there, which he severely doubted. Most of her contacts were people she refused to tell him about, probably because they weren't good people and she didn't want him getting involved in it, and the ones she did tell him about were either teachers at Ilvermorny or Hogwarts, or people who had no connection to either place, like the man she stayed with not long before coming home to take him here. Unfortunately, that meant, he had no idea what they'd do if they missed the train, so he had to hope above all hope that they wouldn't miss the train, and lose all chances that they had of getting there, and that Ollivander would get him his perfect wand before then, and before his nervous worries imploded in his mind and he began to lose it and the older man was hit with impatience he did not at all, in any way, deserve.
xxxHe was about to try thinking of his grandfather again, or try and force his worries away by thinking them out, since both had seemed to work before, but before he could, a distinct jingle sounded from behind, followed by the sound of a swinging door, and he turned to see the source, Hollivander hiding behind his neck and peering out cautiously. A girl had just entered the shop, and she didn't even look his way before coming in. Had she noticed him at all? Her hair was long, and a dark brown, longer than Leona's, and straighter too by the looks. He wanted to say his mom's was longer, but he honestly couldn't be sure; she so often kept it up in a messy bun to keep it from falling in her face as she tended the shop. He didn't understand why girls seemed to like to keep their hair so long, it seemed like more hassle than it was worth, and his shaggy mop already annoyed him sometimes, and it wasn't even too awfully long. It wasn't too much longer than his father's anyways, which was also a bit shaggy, but also a bit wavy and curled, and better styled. Maybe his hair would be like that someday too, but that wasn't important right now. The girl who had just come in was the important thing, and he intended to focus on her. She looked to be about his age, either the same or a tiny bit younger, or maybe even a smidge older, and unless she was a second year who was coming to get a new wand after her last one broke or something, he had a feeling that she was a first year too. Maybe she could be a friend? He watched as her green eyes scanned the room, seeming to search for something, although he had no idea what it could be, and his head tilted after a moment, Hollivander gathering the courage to peak a bit further out, and watch her more closely. She bit her lip, and then set her case down with care. What was she doing? Had she even noticed he was there yet? If she had, did she at all plan to say anything to him? A hello? Anything? A nod of acknowledgement? He watched as her eyes began to roam the roam again, until they finally settled on him at least, and he blinked. Oh. He hadn't expected her to actually look at him. What was he supposed to do now? Smile? Wave? Say hi? He didn't know, and he frowned as he thought. He could feel the Bowtruckle on his shoulder slowly creeping more into her line of sight so he could better see her, and that was when he finally heard the girl's voice. She spoke with a small smile, and wide eyes, and suddenly. It was accented, so she had to be from around here. At her words however, instead of taking in the sound of her voice and it's accent like he was, Hollivander crossed his arms and stuck out his tongue in the direction of the girl with a rude noise coming from his mouth, clearly insulted and offended at the prospect of being compared to a lowly candy, and a twig. His face soon followed in by confused expression as he processed her question, and he shook his head. "Chocolate frogs?" Percy wrinkled his nose. "What are those?" He questioned, his head cocking further to the side as he looked at her. Whatever they were, they didn't sound too tasty, especially when followed by 'enchanted twig'. Hollivander stood on his shoulder now, fully in view, with his arms still crossed, looking more than a little displeased. Percy didn't even notice his sour expression as he moved the creature off his shoulder and onto his hand, so she could see him better, and get a better look. "This is a Bowtruckle. They live in and guard wand wood trees, and if they feel you're a threat to their tree they'll attack and gouge your eyes out." Percy corrected, offering a smile. The Bowtruckle stood proudly, losing his folded twiggy arms and giving a pose instead. Talking seemed to help melt away the weirdness he felt before, and he straightened a bit, trying to stand taller, with pride. He enjoyed being able to tell people what he learned from his sister about her creatures, since it wasn't something most people knew, and it was nice to be the one to know things for once. "His name is Hollivander, he's my sister's. She's a magizooligist and waiting for me outside, and even though he's hers she still let me name him and one other. I named that one Vinneas, and I named this one Hollivander because he was found on a holly tree and my mom says Ollivander's makes the best wands, at least I think they do. I'm from America, so I really don't know, and I don't even know the names of the wandmakers we have over there, just that we get them at Ilvermorny. I'm going to Hogwarts though, so I get to get my wand here." Percy explained, only managing to actually explain for a modern before his words devolved to quick rambles, as he began to get into the flow of talking again, and he visibly perked up, some excitement singing through his eyes. He enjoyed talking, and he was good at it too. He tended to talk too much as well, but right now that wasn't a concern crossing his mind, as a volley of questions suddenly burst forth. "Oh! My name is Percy, what's yours?" He asked, taking a step toward her, and earning a glare from Hollivander as he jostled him a bit with the movement. "Are you going to Hogwarts too? Besides Mr. Ollivander you're the first person from here I've met, what's it like?" Percy watched her with curious eyes, and an excited smile. He should have known the answer already by her accent and that she was here, but he couldn't stop himself from blurting out the question anyway, and hurriedly rushing to follow it up with another, and then more rambles. "And are you from a no-maj or wizarding family? Mine is a mix of both and- oh, sorry. I'm talking too much aren't I? I'll stop now, sorry." Percy finally slowed his words, and came to a stop, his cheeks going red as he realized how much he had been talking, and all the questions he had asked, and the fact he had probably talked the poor girl's ears off in less then a few minutes. She hadn't even seemed to pay him any mind until she saw the creature, and took a great interest in him, so why would she want to hear all his questions? He had really messed up, hadn't he? She'd probably tell him to slow down and stop talking again. He leaned back a bit, rocking on his feet, and giving her an apologetic look, suddenly, once again subdued. "Sorry for talking your ear off again. Mr. Ollivander should be back soon, he went upstairs to look for a wand for me because I accidentally broke a lamp with the previous one he showed me." Percy let out a soft sigh, and turned his gaze toward the stairs, hoping she wouldn't notice how red his cheeks probably were.

xxxA few more minutes passed, and Ollivander finally reappeared from the top of stairs, causing Percy to perk up a bit, and the Bowtruckle to climb it's way back on his shoulder at the sight, not ready for another little magical mishap, or the risk of it happening to him. In his hands was a pale pink box, almost creamy, significantly longer than the silver wand he had broken the lamp with. What kind of wood was pink? He was about to ask, even though he was sure the man would probably tell him, but before he had the chance, Garrick Ollivander seemed to notice the girl he had just met then, and his lips spread into a warm smile. "Ah, Miss Adelinde, I was wondering when I'd see you here." He greeted, slowly making his way down the old steps. He knew her last name? Did that mean he knew her? Or that she had a lot of wizarding family that had gone here before? Or was it planned beforehand? Was he supposed to plan beforehand? He really hoped that wasn't a policy here, bookings before coming in, because if it was he felt awful for barging in and intruding on the man's time like that when he wasn't supposed to be meeting with anyone at all, and getting a break, and he knew Leona would feel just awful for that too. It didn't seem like the place for that though, so he really hoped that wasn't it, and that he hadn't both intruded on someone's precious time and also broken their lamp. He watched the older man with apprehension as he approached, and carefully took the wand from it's box. It was thin, without string, and patterns on the handle. "Now, Mr. Percy, try this one. Dogwood, Pheonix feather core, 13 3/4 inches, flexible. I believe you'll find it to be just the thing, but be careful, dogwood and pheonix feather make quite the mischievous pair." Ollivander then held it out to him, a hand on either end of the wand, and Percy then cautiously took it, wanting to be extra careful. Hollivander tried to hide within the folds of his robes, and after a moment, took to a place behind his neck, small enough to stand on the small ledge the robes gave, and give himself balance by holding on tightly to a few strings of his hair. He looked the wand over for a moment, turning it slowly between his fingers. It was a dusty pink like the box, but ashier. It was odd. So it was Dogwood that was pink? And mischievous too? He liked the sound of that at least, and he really hoped it accepted him. His eyes trailed along it again. It was fairly straight too, and smooth. He recognized Celtic patterns that he had seen around his home, and on his sister's necklace, and pictures of her old school robes, and he liked that too. Celtic things weren't something he knew too much about, but he knew they were very important to his family, and that meant they were important to him too. He glanced at the girl who had come in while he was waiting, and solely raised the wand to try a movement. When he hesitated, and the Bowtruckle made an even more ambitious move to hide, trying to slip between his shirt and his robes, the older man gave a wave of his hand. "Go on, give it a whirl, I'm sure you'll find this one to be much more agreeable." Ollivander assured, and very carefully, in response to his words, Percy gave the wand a small twirl through the air. He felt a warm feeling run from the tips of his fingers where they touched the wand, down his arm, and the throughout his whole form, and watched as the wand gave off a few sparks, like a firework that didn't go off quite right. It felt weird, but right in a strange way, in a way he couldn't at all describe. Was that good? Had he done it wrong? He looked up at Ollivander with a confused look on his face, his eyebrows furrowed as he tentatively held the wand. "Is that good?" Percy inquired softly, clearly confused, and biting the inside of his lip. He glanced to the girl again, and then the older man answered. "Yes, yes, very good. The wand chooses the wizard, and that wand has chosen you." Percy breathed a sigh of relief, and held the wand with a little more confidence. Hollivander slowly peaked out from behind his neck, testing the waters to see if all was okay, before merging again, and peering down at the wand, quite warily, yet curiously at the same time. He had found his wand, and they wouldn't be late, and everything would be alright! He'd get to Hogwarts on time, and the train that took him there, and everything would go as planned and be as perfect as he had always imagined it to be. That was a bit anticlimactic though admittedly, he had been expecting a bigger reaction, something fancier, something less.. like a dud firework that made him feel all warm and weird, and more like a firework display that didn't get stuck on the ground and go off all funny, like the one his father had tried to light the past year that only seared a black circle in the pavement of an empty parking lot by a lake before it spun itself in the water and continued spinning, alight with colors in the lake when the water should have put it's fire out immediately, until it finally burned itself out. Even if it hadn't been as splendid as he was expecting, it still had to cost something right, this wasn't something he wouldn't need to pay for? He was sure it wasn't a free thing at all, so how much would his wand cost? He opened his mouth to ask how much, and if he should pay now, but the man had already returned his attention to the girl, and he slowly closed his mouth, so he wouldn't look like an idiot. So much for asking that now and getting it done with and saving time. "Miss Adelinde, give me just a moment. I know exactly the wand for you." Ollivander gave her a nod and an absentminded smile, his mind already on the path to the wand he had in mind it seemed, and Percy frowned. He ambled away again, this time hopefully to return quicker than before, because Percy still needed to pay, and he did not want to wait that long all over again so soon, he wasn't sure if he could take it. His free hand went down to fiddle with the galleons in his pocket that his sister had given him as he began to prepare to wait awhile again if that was needed, the amount enough to buy at least a couple wands, so there was no chance he couldn't afford it. He listened to it faintly jingle, and glanced over at the girl agin before looking back down at his wand, thinking about now tired of waiting he had been after only a couple minutes after settling his nerves over the lamp, before she came in and made things interesting all over again. He had been so bored. So, so bored. So very bored, and all too quickly. Had had just wanted to get his wand and hop on the train and head to his new school, but then she had walked in, and he wasn't as bored, and now, he just wanted to get to know her and ask her something, but he was feeling a bit too uncharacteristically shy and unsure to ask more questions, in case she didn't want to talk to him while waiting for her wand, now that he had at last gotten his. If she wanted to talk, he would leave that to her.

Iris
Lovely Friend
Posts: 198
Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 12:50 pm

[ t w o ] peculiarity from across the pond

Post by Iris » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:32 pm

xxxxImage
Image
Image
xImage
Of course Draco hadn't expected anything to come out of the encounter with the woman. He hadn't even planned the encounter at all, clearly, instead instigating the exchange through a true and honest mistake. He hadn't meant to walk in to her, hadn't seen her there, and had absolutely no idea who the woman possible was before he turned to look back at her- and even then, he could say definitively, he had absolutely no idea who she was. It was all an accident, brought on by paying little attention in a crowded street full of witches and wizards bustling about from shop to shop. No, Draco had absolutely no intention on anything to happen from it, hadn't expected it to happen in the first place, and even then had only anticipated making sure that whoever he had collided in to was alright out of some sense of politeness, even if the quality wasn't one which he found himself absolutely drowning in. No matter what he had expected or, rather, not expected, however, at least some part of him had known the moment that he had turned around that it was going to be a different sort of encounter. Different how, or in what way, he couldn't exactly say. Yet, even with all of the oddities that Draco had witnessed in his lifetime, oddities which were absolutely by no means in short supply, even he had been surprised to see a girl holding on to the cage of an owl and being clung to by a beast he could only imagine to be magical in nature from it's foreign appearance alone. After he had asked the question, it took a noticeable moment for the young woman to formulate a reply. A moment in which, Draco could only assume in the moment, meant that she was taking in his features and the reality of who he was immediately upon recognizing them. Outside of more morally ambiguous circles that he was accustomed to, such a realization likely wouldn't result in anything favorable, to be sure. Yet, as he waited, he found himself letting his mind move elsewhere and yet remain all the same- on her, just in a different regard. It was for a moment that he was able to take in the sight of her, the woman's attractive features, eyes meeting hers. It just lasted a moment, his mind brought back to the current situation he found himself fully aware of how it would most likely progress, though in his speculation the reality he was met with had never crossed his mind.

Her name was Leona Deorne. A part of Draco, a fundamental part that would probably always be there no matter how much his past had shifted his world view, clung immediately to the fact that he didn't recognize her last name. Who was she, then? A muggleborn, a half blood, a member of an American wizarding family he hadn't heard of before?Of course, as one might imagine to be the case of a son of a then-ex-death eater, Draco had grown up well aware of the other pureblood wizarding families. It wasn't only his heritage, it was always his present. Concepts of the sacred bloodlines, those who hadn't been muddied by muggle blood, had been a topic heavily emphasized within the walls of the Malfoy Manor for the entirety of his childhood. For as long as he could remember, he could list the entirety of the Sacred Twenty-Eight, the rather limited and extremely selective list of wizarding families that Salazar Slytherin was said to recognize as the only true pureboods of the time-- even if, really, in hindsight it was a list that focused on the most prestigious names in a very specific area of the world, names that could track their genealogy back centuries 'without a drop of muggle blood to contaminate them'. It wasn't just an abstract concept for Draco, either. His father had remained close to the other death eaters who had alluded imprisonments within the walls of Azkaban after the first wizarding war, so Draco had grown up around the death eaters who remained free and their children as well. Even those of pure blood who weren't death eaters, or descendants of death eaters, Draco tended to know by name at least, and often personally through his father's business and personal dealings within the wizarding world. Needless to say, Malfoy's knew purebloods.

So did that mean she was a muggle born or a half blood who took the name of a muggle father, then, just because her name- that of the family of Deorne - wasn't one of the many dozens that he would have recognized as one of a wizarding family? No, of course it didn't. Besides, she was obviously from North America, that much was made abundantly clear the moment she opened her mouth to reply to his question. His knowledge of the wizarding world may have been extensive, but it was hardly all encompassing, especially with those from the new world, areas he couldn't really be bothered to know of extensively as it was of absolutely no interest to him. Either way, while he couldn't help the fact that his mind had naturally went there, curious of her name, it wasn't something that he found himself focusing on for any significant length of time. It may have been something that he still noticed, but it wasn't something that really captured his attention in the way that such a topic once had. Time and trauma had shaken his mind from focusing on a thing that now seemed so small and petty compared to what he had been introduced to over the years. Besides, with the way this exchange was going, blood status and the realization that she so obviously wasn't from around here seemed to be the least notable aspect of it. She didn't seem afraid of him, even as she introduced herself. Perhaps she didn't recognize his name, something his ego always made him assume was an inevitability, but even then she just didn't seem afraid of him, didn't act like she knew what he had done and the horrors that the Dark Lord had left behind. It was possible, he supposed as he attempted to rationalize, that she wouldn't have a clue as to who he was given her accent. It was possible- no, given how she was acting he decided, it was probable, that she didn't know. Yet, knowing or not knowing of his sins, the friendly reaction was not something that he had been at all expecting. It wasn't something he was expecting because it wasn't something that he was accustomed to, certainly not anymore, and yet as foreign as it was it was drawn in and surrounded him like a cool burst of fresh mint against his senses, disarming if only for a moment. Then, if he hadn't already been surprised enough, the odd looking animal that was clinging to Leona disappeared. It disappeared, and she started trying to coax it to show itself once again- even saying that the creature would be safe and that she trusted Draco. Right, so she certainly didn't know who he was, then.

She reminded him of a Lovegood, he decided immediately as he watched her, his brows furrowed and raised at the spectacle of the attractive young woman speaking to an animal which may or may not have even been there anymore, for all he knew. She certainly seemed as loony as Looney Lovegood herself, though the resemblance went far further than that. Draco had quite a bit of history with Luna, after all, given her less than desirable stay in Malfoy Manor after her father had published things, unfavorable sentiments about the Dark Lord and the death eaters who followed him, instead showing a then seemingly unwavering loyalty to Harry Potter and his cause. Even beyond that, they had attended school together and while Draco hardly made it a goal to associate with the likes of the insanity Lovegood had to offer, Luna had a bit of a quirky personality that had always been a bit difficult to miss, even if not for reasons that seemed entirely favorable at the time. Draco could still remember the annoyance he felt when he saw Luna with the beloved Golden Trio and the rest of Dumbledore's Army sneaking about Hogwarts during the year before everything went to absolute shit for the Malfoy family. He also had other memories of the girl, of course. He could remember her in her oddly bright clothing, hideous fabrics adorning her body by his account but proudly in her own right nevertheless. He could recall being a teenager on that damned train, the same one he would be revisiting shortly for the first time in years. As clearly as if it was just yesterday and not now over half a decade ago, his head pressed against the soft fabric of Pansy Parkinson's dark robes as the two spoke to one another primarily and then occasionally Blaise and Crabbe and Goyle. The thought of such past intimacy with Pansy, if only oddly then-innocent and once dully comforting in nature, was enough to nearly make Draco recoil from the memory all together and at once in light of far more recent developments in regards to the nature of the relationship the two of them shared. Still he didn't, imagining the sight of Luna, a Ravenclaw if there ever was one, entering in to the train car that was packed so exclusively with Slytherin students to pass out the latest edition of The Quibbler. He may not have paid much attention to the girl, but even he couldn't escape the ridiculous natures of her stories of invisible mind-gobbling creatures and the like. Always invisible creatures, Draco remembered, recalling the girl who he more recently had heard was involved with Rolf Scamander, a magizoologist, for whatever the hell that meant. Decidedly similar to the girl who was now rambling in front of him, chatting with the strangest visible, turned invisible, and currently once again visible creature he could recall seeing in the entirety of his life.

Brought out of his thoughts once more by the sound of Leona's apologies and explanation, and then naturally by the sight of the darkening of her cheeks which even if he wouldn't have his mind linger on, he couldn't deny that it was a decidedly good look on her. Blinking, Draco raised his brows. "I can not possibly imagine why," he claimed with a bit of light sarcasm in response to her claim that Dewitt could unnerve people. Still, he extended his hand forward, finally taking hers in a rather formal manner before shaking it, deciding to introduce himself even if it was a bit delayed, given the disappearance of Dewitt. "Malfoy. Draco Malfoy." It was an introduction he had given countless times before, of course, even if the times when he had actually needed to inform someone of who he was had always been a rarity. Of course in recent years most people from the wizarding world locally seemed to know exactly who he was- they knew him for his actions, for stories and rumors as well as past acts that could more accurately attributed to the young wizard. Draco Malfoy, the death eater- the son of Lucius Malfoy, the nephew of Bellatrix Lestrange, a servant of the Dark Lord himself. Oh yes, he was known. Even before then, he was Draco Malfoy, the only heir to the Malfoy name, son of an ex-death eater with oddly high standing within the wizarding community's society in no small part due to historic connections and immense wealth. It was once, for so long it seemed even in such a brief period of existence, a name that Draco had been so proud to announce to those who didn't recognize him by his face alone or to those who did but who he wished to provide a proud reminder of exactly who he was. It was something to boast about- not just pride in family for being his family, but his family for their status and privilege above so many others. While he couldn't claim to be free of any family pride anymore, that simply wasn't who he was, the introduction was no longer a boast. It held emphasis on his family name before his first name, of course, but it was so clearly different than he once was. His introduction wasn't to boast, it was just an introduction as perhaps it should have always been.

Finally pulling his hand back from the warmth of hers, Draco gave a small nod in a sort of acceptance that she was alright and that he hadn't hurt her or the animals that she was carrying, though if he was being honest the creatures weren't exactly his number one cause of the minimal concern he had felt at best when he had first turned to her regardless. He moved to step away, to turn his body and disappear back in to the crowds of witches and wizards as he went on his way to board the damned Hogwarts Express again, but something stopped him. Something he couldn't quite understand, and something he didn't bother to try to question. Perhaps it was because he found her peculiar already in such a short time, maybe it was because she was such an attractive girl even if he knew nothing would possible come out of it and his mind didn't even enter in to that place. Or, maybe, it could have just been some part of him gripping on to a conversation without pretense for a moment longer. There was no fear or judgement, she wasn't cowering and giving him some sort of lethal glare that seemed to slice through him and expose him for all that he was and all that he had done, and for all he could tell she didn't have a clue as to what haunted his past and was attached to his name. Perhaps it was precisely that, a manifestation of how terribly lonely it was to be Draco Malfoy, and he wished to just extend the conversation for a moment longer before his own reservations and the barriers that surrounded his existence caught up to him and pressed him forward to the Hogwarts Express.

"For my own curiosity," he paused, brows pushing together as he began to speak to the young woman again. "Is...Dewitt," he tried out the name, the name sounding foreign and distinctly different even from the way she had spoken it even to Draco's own ears, given the softness of the accent he spoke it in, "actually able to understand you, do you think?" Admittedly, it wasn't exactly a question that was weighing on his mind if he was being absolutely honest, and whether or not the creature could understand his caretaker seemed rather significantly overshadowed by the claim that the creature could see in to the future. Of course, even that wouldn't surprise him too much if it was true- how could it, really, after growing up in the world he had? The world where his family had been cared for by an annoying little house elf that would apparate from one room to another with greater ease than any witch or wizard than Draco had ever seen in the entirety of his life, where a man who had died and died again came back to wage another war as the greatest dark wizard that ever was known? A world where Albus Dumbledore had existed at the same time as Bellatrix Lestrange, where portraits would move and trolls roamed the halls of the dungeons - the same dungeons that housed the Slytherin House dormitories - and ghosts would bother and whine about the castle of Hogwarts, where one was even employed as a teacher? It was a world where Rubeus Hagrid had been allowed to teach at Hogwarts, and likely still was employed to this day if Draco was forced to guess. Hell, it was a world where some little magical creature had just went shy and hid from Draco by going invisible in front of his eyes. Draco wasn't easily phased anymore, at least not on any significant level, which was probably why the disappearing act was strange but not anything within the realm of frightening for the wizard. Yet, of course, it wasn't a question that he was asking out of real curiosity, that he was eagerly awaiting an explanation for. No, that had nothing to do with it.

xxxxxImage
Image
Image
xxImage

Perhaps it should be said that Rosie Adelinde wasn't accustomed to socializing with strangers alone. Her life had been incredibly sheltered, though undeniably in a way far different than most children could claim to be sheltered. With two older siblings, she wasn't an only child, and yet given their differences in age, the two of older Adelinde siblings had either been away from home much of the year attending Hogwarts, or graduated and living away from home for the amount of time in which Adelinde could actually recall of her life. No, she wasn't an only child by any means, but she had so often held the experience of one for much of the year, year after year. Her upbringing had been one of isolation from children her age, really, with only her nephews of similar age and they were years younger. Even then, perhaps not in addition but as an extension, Rosie had always been a bit of a strange girl from a social standpoint, if not in several others. She was accustomed to being alone, to being in a world all of her very own as she read or spent time outside. Rosie was comfortable being alone, as with the exception of her parents, that was precisely what she was for most of her life. It was perhaps for that reason, then, that she hadn't really entered in to the conversation with the boy in the wand shop with any expectation of how it would go beyond perhaps rudely making a spectacle of the animated thing on the boy's shoulder. For whatever she might have thought to expect, however, if she had taken the time to attempt to anticipate anything rather than diving right in through means of bold curiosity, she would certainly have never expected what she was greeted by. It was a reality that became clear to her the moment the dark-haired boy had opened his mouth to respond, something she had hardly been paying mind to at first as her attention was still locked in on the small green figure on him. While he was small enough and at a distance that Rosie couldn't exactly make out how his facial expression had changed, the rude noise that had been emitted from the twig was startlingly clear. The girl's head leaned back a bit suddenly at the noise, eyes narrowing ever so slightly and brows furrowing. Had it understood her? The idea seemed unlikely, but the reaction seemed so clearly decisive. Either way, while the sight of the twig-looking figure certainly intrigued her, Rosie's green eyes were quick to turn to the boy when she heard his voice, the sound surprising her. It was a foreign accent, more blunt than the sounds she was accustomed to- it one that she rarely heard, but reminded her immediately of the distinct sound of a man her father had once hosted in his London home from The Magical Congress of the United States of America. With that thought, the boy immediately had her interest, more than the twig he was holding ever had. More of her interest, even, than the creature possessed when it was introduced as a Bowtruckle, a word Rosie was sure she had never even heard before, or when it was explained that the creature was known to gouge people's eyes out. Wicked, the morbid girl thought with perhaps a bit too much acceptance at the dark and violent thought.

Rosie remain quiet and listened as the boy spoke, offering information and asking questions in such quick succession that Rosie didn't even bother to answer right away, instead focusing on his words and the questions at hand. Ah, she was right- he was American! His name was Percy, a name that she had heard through others possessing it. As the boy continued to talk, Rosie just stood in her place, watching him and listening to the foreign accent go on and on. She wasn't accustomed to someone talking so much, surely, and yet she found that she didn't mind all the same. Sure, perhaps in many cases she would have as under most circumstances it was doubtful that she wouldn't experience any annoyance at the spectacle, but there was none of that now. No. Instead, rather, there was something else entirely in it's place. Instead, she found herself amused, her lips maintaining the same smile that had developed on them when she had first spotted the Bowtruckle. In her amusement, as it was, there was only one question that stood out to her above the rest. Dark brows furrowing at the question, Rosie's head tilted slightly to the side in confusion. What a strange question it was, she figured, though there was so much to unpack in that one question alone. A wizarding or no-maj? What the hell was a no-maj? It took her a moment, a brief moment albeit still far longer than it should have, for the young girl to deduce that the strange term must have been his version of a muggle. Wizarding or mo-maj- if nothing else, the two options provided in comparison to one another made her more confident in her assumption, even if was perhaps a more simple obvious matter than she found it to be. Of course, even if she was right, it was still such a strange question. At least, in her world it was, even if not in reality. She had never had the status of her blood purity questioned before- she had never really had conversations with witches or wizards away from family or her father's work functions, and in either case they knew her through her family, and as such knew full well exactly what kind of family she was from. It felt odd to even be asked such a thing, even if it was practical. Although she found it odd, there was something else that quickly caught her attention. Some of his family were muggles, then? She had met half-bloods before, sure, but the idea of someone having muggle routes always seemed so odd to Rosie, particularly given how removed she personally was from the muggle world. Her distance from the muggle world was something that her parents had always been keen to maintain; she was a witch, a pureblooded witch, and was to maintain the lifestyle and traditions such a bloodline required. Her family claimed that it was out of tradition rather than prejudice that they held such a belief, though it seemed so easy to assume that their claim didn't strictly hold true. After all, they were hardly fond of the muggle world. Her mother held an obvious disdain for muggles, though the obviousness of her opinions were perhaps questionable in circles outside of immediate family and friends.

The matriarch of the Adelinde family had that way about her, really- it was something that Rosie had noticed from quite a young age. She liked to think of her mother as a triangle, something she had expressed to Ezra once only to be warned that their mother had more of an hourglass figure than a triangular one, and not to claim otherwise for risk of hurting their mother's feelings and the attractive woman's sense of vanity. Of course, Rosie didn't quite understood how saying her mother was triangular had anything to do with vanity at the time, and still years later found herself to be clueless in the double meaning of the words. In fact, Rosie had thought of it in more of a personal regard that that, a sort of mental picture based on personality rather than a literal image based on appearance as Ezra seemed to understand it as. She was a woman of three sides. There was the side of her that she showed the public. She was the intelligent and elegant housewife of an important man, after all. In public her mother had the tendency to seem polite, but never warm- not really, not the way that Rosie knew her to be, not unless her focus was on her children. It was calculated, her personality, it seemed- a well rehearsed front, a woman who knew how to get what she wanted but always held something a little more about her, a sort of dangerous and underappreciated demeanor that Rosie undeniably looked up to. In that side, her public side, prejudice would never be admitted, for reputation was everything for a pureblooded family of historically Slytherin origins.

On another side was her private demeanor, the one she showed principally to her family and usually only in private. It was much of the same as the last, but there was a warmth there, a protective drive and unquestionable love. On that side of the triangle, she stressed tradition to her children and her grandchildren. Tradition in magic, and in pureblooded marriage. It was tradition, after all, and there was nothing prejudiced about tradition, her mother would surely claim. Her children were pureblooded, they were to act as purebloods, and they were to marry purebloods and have pureblooded children to dote on and to love. It was all so obvious. Yet there were another side of her mother as well, one that Rosie couldn't claim familiarity to as she had seen only glimpses of it. It was a side of the woman that held far lower opinions of muggles and their decedents that she would ever openly express in public and would only reveal in moments of irritation or when lacking focus at home. Yes, it was quite clear to Rosie that her mother didn't have the warmest view of muggles and those who descended from them. Her father spoke of tradition as well, though Rosie suspected his claims of tradition were more genuinely routed in precisely that than her mothers were. Of course she could have been wrong, and probably was given the way both Leland and Ezra seemed keen to throw the word 'mudblood' around freely in private. Rosie was the baby of the family, even she knew as much, and her status as the youngest of their children along with the completely different era she was being brought up in compared to her siblings given the second wizarding war and her father's rather recent appointment to his powerful position meant her parents were far more careful of what they said around her than what they probably were with their other children, but of course Rosie was left only to speculate. Either way, regardless of her family's wording, her distance from the muggle world made her not only unaccustomed to her own blood purity being questioned, but also lost at how to interact with someone who did have that experience without her family there to guide her. Still, in her confusion, there was amusement and an immediate and strange fondness. While she was thinking, contemplating such a strange question, he had already began apologizing for speaking so much. The apology brought her back to the present, her lips lowering slightly in to a faint smirk. "Wizarding. Decidedly wizarding," was all she answered, feeling a strange need to but otherwise allowing the silence to fill the air between them once again after he explained where Mr. Ollivander was.

Green eyes settling towards the back of the shop as the conversation ceased, her hands fell to her side, fingers brushing against the soft black fabric of her skirt. Still amused and increasingly excited to see Mr. Ollivander and finally get her wand after everything with Percy was sorted, Rosie bit down on her bottom lip once more and allowed her eyes to flicker up towards the ceiling as she heard the noise on a floor above them. It may have seemed like forever before anything developed, but in reality it was probably closer to only a few minutes before the strange-seeming older man descended the staircase and joined the children again. The young witch gave a small smile to the man's acknowledgement, not sparing a thought for how he possibly would have known her from sight alone. Instead, her fingers settled against her skirt once more, watching the exchange between the man who was presumably the wand maker and Percy with interest and excitement surging. The sight of a pink wood intrigued her, even if she personally had little interest in the color itself. Somehow she liked the thought of such an odd seeming boy potentially having it though, it seemed to suit him. Her brows raised at the description of the wand, having never heard of dogwood before, but entirely curious about what the implications of a mischievous wand would even be. Still, she watched as he waved it, brows shooting up when sparks left the wand. That was what it looked like? It seemed a little...anticlimactic, perhaps, but her thoughts were elsewhere the moment Ollivander turned his attention to her, Rosie feeling even more excited as he claimed to know exactly the wand for her. She took a few small steps forward, closer to the boy who had just been given his wand, as she waited excitedly for the man to return. It was then that her eyes flickered back to Percy, and she caught his eyes in her direction as well.

At the sight, her lips pulled upwards a bit once again in to a bit of a smirk, thoroughly amused by him. "Do they really not have chocolate frogs in America? I've never been, I'm from Yorkshire, but to not have chocolate frogs and keep cheeky twigs seems a bit strange, wouldn't you say?" No, the odd little creature on the boy's shoulder wasn't a twig, it was a Bowtruckle, Rosie recalled quite clearly. Yet the savage seeming little creature seemed to have a bit of an attitude, and if it had been become it could truly understand her name for it, then she'd gladly call it a twig as many times as she could get away with and then infinitely more as long as she pleased. Admittedly, she was still far more intrigued by the eye-gorging tendencies the boy had claimed for the animal to have than any eleven year old girl rightfully should have been after hearing such a thing, but despite the interest it would remain a twig for her- if for no other reason than the unimaginably petty nature that Rosie seemed to be born with and that seemed to only develop further as she grew older. A small smirk toyed at the girl's features as she looked over at the dark haired boy. "I'm Rosie. Rosie Adelinde." Rosie introduced herself to the American boy, continuing to go back to their earlier conversation, though stopped herself from going any further when she saw Ollivander returning. He was carrying a box, already taking out the dark colored wand and handing it to the girl. Rosie was all to willing to take it, her eyes wide as she held the wand parallel to her body in both hands, looking at the wand she had been giving. "This looks like my father's," Rosie observed, a bit of excitement in her voice at the prospect of having a wand just like her father's. She had always liked his, after all.

"Ah, a talented eye. Not quite like your father's, though. Of cedar, yes, but with a core of unicorn hair rather than dragon's heartstring." Ollivander corrected, the words making Rosie falter a bit and raise a brow in distaste. Unicorn hair? It had a core of unicorn hair? It didn't exactly sound much like her, but what did she know? "Go on, then, give it a wave," Ollivander encouraged. Biting down on her lip once more, Rosie gave a reluctant nod before positioning the wand in one hand as she always saw witches and wizards to, being careful to point the wand away from Ollivander and Percy and more towards the back of the shop before obliging and giving a careful wave. Rosie wasn't sure what she was expecting, perhaps sparks like Percy's wand had produced, but what she got instead was the thrill of seeing a bunch of papers going flying in the back of the shop, fluttering down like snow to the floor below. Yes, a thrill, even as she looked to Ollivander's face and knew that that wasn't what was supposed to happen. She had done that, she had caused that. Even more so than the excitement of finally being able to use a wand, even if it wasn't the right wand, was the fact that it wasn't the right wand. She knew unicorn hair didn't sound right, she hadn't liked the sound of it the moment she had heard it, and as Ollivander took the wand back, Rosie felt relief that she wouldn't be stuck with a wand with unicorn hair and couldn't help but give a smile even as the man was muttering about how that wand certainly wasn't the one. "Right then, perhaps something else. Ah..." The man was quick to go searching for the next wand, which took only a few moments and a quick trip on a latter before he was returning once more. The next wand was longer than the last, and Rosie couldn't deny the attraction she felt to the dark wood. "Ebony wood and a phoenix feather core, quite rare," he encouraged, though the man's confidence seemed lost once more as Rosie waved the wand the same as she had the last one, and a few boxes came flying down from a top shelf. "Definitely not," Ollivander confirmed the obvious as Rosie handed the wand back to him, brows furrowing. She had liked the look and sound of that one, and felt a bit disappointed that it hadn't liked her as well. As the man was placing the wand back in the box he had retrieved it from, he paused to look at the young girl. "I wonder..." he began, eyeing her for a moment longer before going towards the back of his shop and going up on the ladder once more. While he was gone Rosie watched him, eyes only leaving him for a moment to glance back at Percy, before the sound of Ollivander's footsteps captured her attention once more. "This one, perhaps? Blackthorn, dragon heartstring, 9 1/4 inches. A wand of a warrior, this one," he almost seemed a bit apprehensive about the last part, perhaps reflecting on what family she was from.

Despite his apparent apprehension, however, Rosie felt excitement at the description. She took the wand gently, eyeing it for a moment with appreciation. It was the smallest of the wands she had been given to try, and it's dark wood was blackish in color, immediately attracting her to it. Even more than that was the type of wood, which seemed almost smooth with the incredibly notable exception of the spines that adorned it, giving the impression of thorns. Oh, Rosie liked that. It seemed so perfect, even more so than the last, which admittedly made her a bit nervous, even if only for a moment. Would the wand like her as much as she liked it? She was slower about raising it, but when she did, she was delighted to learn that it wasn't like the last two. No, this one was different. It felt right and warm to the touch, with no destructive mishap to be seen, only a small warm light of something. Rosie's heart began to pound in excitement as she looked up to Ollivander. "Was that...?"

"Very good," he confirmed.

Rosie beamed inwardly at the thought, giving the shop owner a nod as her eyes examined her new wand before looking back up at him suddenly. "Oh! Where do I-?"

"Your father has already covered it. Give him my best?" Rosie nodded, somehow entirely unsurprised by the development and murmuring a quiet obligatory 'thank you' before stepping back towards her case, suddenly reminded that Ezra hadn't returned yet. Biting down on her lip as she took her case in her free hand, unwilling to let go of her new wand yet, Rosie looked back to Percy. She'd wait for her sister in the shop while he finished up, she decided, still intrigued by the similarly odd seeming boy.

User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] 003

Post by 76heart » Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:57 pm

Image
━━━━━━━━━not a monster━━
Image
━she couldn't love━━━━━━
xxxMeeting people, or people in general really, had never been something she was good at, or had much skill in. She always fumbled something, or said something dumb, or took a moment to long, or just scared them off with doing something odd and abnormal. It wasn't like she had never learned or been taught how to conduct herself around others or introduce herself to people, it was just she was absolutely abysmal with it, at least until she knew the person she was speaking with well. She never knew what to do, or say, or when to stop talking once she started, until she actually got close to who she was talking with, which obviously was a rare occurrence because she kept scaring or chasing them away before she could learn more than their name. Talking with animals came easily, naturally, instinctually, and she always knew exactly what to do, but with people, no-maj, witch, wizard, and all that was in between, she had absolutely no clue, and it was just one blunder after the next. It was all just a horrible tangle in her head, that only seemed to unravel and come loose and fall into it's proper places once she knew who she was speaking to, and felt comfortable with them, which hardly ever happened with anyone who she wasn't staying with or helping that loved animals as much as she, because she almost always messed it up too horribly for that to ever happen with anyone else. Of course it had been much easier when she was a child, as children never seemed to have much issue going up and introducing themselves to complete strangers if they weren't the shy type to hide behind their parent's leg, which Leona most certainly hadn't been. She could go up to anyone and say hello and get talking about anything in the world and have it feel right, but she had long since grown out of the childhood friendly and trusting innocence, and she so wished she hadn't. Back then she had been able to help her mother man their shop, and talk to and entertain their customers all on her own if her mother had to leave and get something, and when Percy came along she had often been trusted to take care of the customers herself, because her mother would need to pop in and out every few minutes so her father wasn't left alone with their new son and a Demiguise that was still figuring out how to care for this tricky baby, and get over the near constant visions of what said baby would do next that quite often scared him, and only Leona and Winks were left to tend the shop that they needed to keep open for a living. She had been quite the little social butterfly then, always greeting everyone and so very eager to help them out and help them to find what they were looking for, and then tell them stories as she was ringing them up. She adored helping out in the shop so much, and she still enjoyed it in all honesty, though it was a lot more difficult now, because almost everyone who came in had known her as a child, and with her rarely there anymore, the 'look at you, you've grown so much!', 'oh look how you've gown! You've become so beautiful, just like your mother' sorts of comments were thrown at her tenfold, and it was all she ever heard, and it made it near impossible to do anything without her face and ears turning almost as red as a rosy, ripe tomato. If Percy was there he would tease her about it, and then instantly regret it, because the usually elderly patrons would then turn on him, and begin to go on about he was becoming such a dapper, strapping young lad, and that it was about time he get the shaggy mop on his head trimmed. It was a sweet hint of revenge for that to happen, something that only siblings ever seemed to share. She missed the days when she was his age and helping out with their shop though, she truly did. They were a much easier time, when she didn't stumble over words or horribly mess everything up. She had been to so many different places and met so many different people that she didn't even know what the right way to say hello to someone was half the time. She couldn't remember what the right way to greet someone was far too often, or if she was doing the right one, or if she was doing something from a place on the other side of the world. Was it a handshake? A bow accompanied by the hello of their language? Kisses in the air, done in the smallest breadth away from their cheeks on either side, while they did the same to her? Or just on one? Or with the lips actually making contact with the skin? Was it a curtsy? A greeting somewhere might be horribly offensive somewhere else, or just incredibly improper in another, and if she was meeting with someone important or of significance, mixing up their customs for that of somewhere similar, yet incredibly different all the same could be a most grievous error that had the potential to risk everything. It was all such a mess, and all of it was do terribly mixed up and tangled in her head, no matter how many times she forced herself to practice and get it straight, and carefully untangle them and place them with their proper places. She always got a headache when she tried, and that just led to an even bigger mess. At least she was a little better than she had become during her first few years at Ilvermorny, where a small few her failed socializing attempts had turned into fights, because she realized certain people were not deserving of her attempts to be kind to them. That had not been a pleasant time at all, a time she never wanted to go to again. She had gone into her years at school thinking that everyone would be as wonderful as all the people she had met before, but she quickly learned that they weren't, that not everyone was good, and that so many her awful, mean, cruel people, who delighted in the suffering of others. She never had an ounce of patience for those people, and she doubted that she ever would. After very nearly breaking someone's nose after they were being mean to a Mooncalf- one of the ones that now happened to live with her- in her third year, during her seventh, and final fight, and then going on to scare a boy with her patronus of a little owl, people had begun to avoid her for the most part, and she was left alone with her Care of Magical Creatures professor, Atticus Fisk, his creatures, and Winks, which she was more than happy with. There were no heartless jerks for her to be stuck with, and no people to mess up introductions with, like she just had with the handsome man in front of her. She just hoped she didn't make as big a fool of herself with those from the two schools arriving at Hogwarts for the Triwizard Tournament; that could bring about a very minor disaster that she did not want to cause. She also really wanted to get to know and study the majestic Abraxans that would bring those coming from Beauxbatons to the school, and if she offended their Headmistress and couldn't smooth it over, that was unlikely to happen.

xxxThe Triwizard Tournament, a main reason she was here, and yet another reason why she and Percy could not afford to be at all late. She was needed for it, or at the very least, it was incredibly important that she was there. They needed everyone they could get to make sure it was as safe as it could possibly be without completely eliminating the heart racing rangers and difficult, risky tasks in which the chosen champions needed to compete, and because she was already going to be there for the year, helping Hagrid with his class, she had offered to help. That, and no one else, except for her it seemed, was insane enough to help with the dragons besides those who already worked with them and were bringing them there, their handlers, and they truly did need as many people to help with them as possible, to make extra sure it all went alright; they couldn't risk another student dying again. The tournament had returned for the first time ages in 1994 after not being held for a very long time due to high death toll, and had not happened since due to the death of a boy, Cedric Diggory, a seemingly very well loved Hufflepuff boy, and the return of Lord Voldemort, until now, because the three schools wanted to foster better relationships between them, and grow closer once again, or something like that at least. Maybe they wanted to form some sort of closeness, some sort of alliance that would come in to play should anyone like Voldemort ever rise again to threaten any one of their magical schools, or perhaps they merely wanted to be closer, and enjoy the tournament once more, as they used to. No matter the reason though, it was imperative that everything go perfectly this time, without another hitch, or death, and that was exactly one of the reasons why she was coming to the school. Magizoology had never been the most common field, or profession for one to take up, and it was probably rarer still to find one willing to be an emergency safeguard and backup in a tournament that had claimed so many lives. Leona wasn't sure how she felt about having so much weigh on her shoulders, and hinge and depend on her being able to step in and deal with any number of mishaps if she was needed, but it wasn't going to be something she shied away from, even if the stress and fear of all that could go wrong if she failed began to grow strong, and quicker than she could push back. She had offered to help, and she would, and that was that. She wasn't going to back out of it now when it was so needed. If one of the dragons in the first task got out of control and truly began to be a serious danger that risked many lives, she was to step in. If during the second task, the merfolk or Grinylows converged on one of the champions and wouldn't let them and the student they were meant to "save" return to the surface and breech the air they needed to breathe, she was to do something and help. If during the third and final task, one if the creatures deployed in the maze became too dangerous, then she was to do something about it. They just couldn't risk another dying again, or allow another life to be lost through it. It made the glory the winner would earn less spectacular, and the risks were much lower, but it seemed better this way, to her at least. No one, not beast, which, or wizard, should lose their life for a game, and these were children competing, children who may not have ever even known this was coming, and already their lives were at risk, because if their name was spit from the goblet, they had no choice but to complete, unless they wished to die. Magical contracts were just as binding as the ones signed on parchment paper, if not more so, and the one formed upon a name being placed in the goblet, and then drawn from it, was quite literally, deadly. There was no way for them to back out or change their mind if they put it in without first thinking things properly through, or in a moment of uncharacteristic courage, and they couldn't pull away if they needed, and that in itself already was dangerous enough to her. What if someone's friend slipped their name in as a joke, or they were pressured into putting their own name in by people they thought were friends? Someone who wanted nothing to do with the tournament could be thrust into it against their wishes with no choice but to compete, and they could lose their life because of it. That just didn't seem right to Leona, and she wanted to do all she could to make it better, and prevent the deaths of anyone when so much was at stake, and there was so little choice to be found. At least she didn't have to worry about Percy getting caught up in that mess; only students at the age of seventeen and above were allowed to enter, and her little brother was several years away from that. There would also be an aging line drawn around the goblet where the entrants would place there names, and many enchantments cast upon it, left over from when Dumbledore cast them when he was still alive. She had a feeling even more newer ones would be done too, and that ever precaution possible would be taken to prevent a younger student from entering, or another entering someone else, or a situation like what had happened with Harry Potter from ever happening again. Someone had placed the boy's name in and forced it to be drawn when he was only fourteen, and while he had won alongside Cedric Diggory, he had also been the cause of the boy's death, an no one wanted such an occurrence to ever happen again. Leona hoped that Harry wouldn't return for the tournament either, the spectacular Mr. Potter had also caused the death of a dragon during his first task, and she was not keen on seeing the person who had cost an innocent Hungarian Horntail that had been forced to compete, it's life, especially when she didn't see why he was so loved by all anyway. Ignoring that fact though, she was looking forward to the tournament in a weird way, or more specially, the dragons that she would get the privilege of helping with. She wasn't sure how her brother would react upon learning about it, though. It was something she had refrained from telling Percy, so his dreams of playing quidditch his very first year would not be so brutally crushed, and she would not have to be the one to explain that he was too young to compete in the very dangerous thing that called for the canceling of his favorite thing.
xxxLeona would have wondered if the man before her knew about the tournament, or if he was going to be involved, but before thoughts of the tournament even crossed her mind, as she let her eyes travel across his attractive features, her mind had already been pulled away to something else, to him, to his eyes. Before she finally answered his question, their eyes met for a moment. A moment, however fleeting, that she didn't want to forget.

xxxBlue gray eyes watched as the man blinked, and raised his brows. His voice followed soon after, with a noticeable tinge of sarcasm to his words that made her smile, and send Dewitt a look. The Demiguise was unaffected by it, if he even noticed it, and continued to watch the man in front of them apprehensively. It was then that the man extended his hand forward, at last taking hers in a rather formal manner before shaking it. His hand felt warm against her own, and she found that she liked the feeling. An introduction followed right after, and she couldn't help but smile. The introduction was a tad delayed, but understandably so, given in the middle of her own, the creature on her shoulder had disappeared, and he didn't seem to be at all accustomed to such behavior, which was also just as understandable. Demiguise were found in the Far East, and only found through great difficulty, due to their ability to make themselves invisible when threatened, or whenever they wished it seemed. Only people who were skilled in their capture could spot them, and even she didn't know how to spot them, and she had lived with one for her entire life. She only knew how to find Dewitt because she knew him, and his behaviors and tendencies well enough to have a good guess at where he'd be if he wasn't still on her shoulder, or holding his hand, and she could feel him still there. So, needless to say, it was probably very likely that the man, or anyone else here, had never seen such a thing before. That wasn't all that important though, because he had finally introduced himself, and given her his name, which was far more important, and a wide smile came to her lips at the sound of his name.
xxxA name, it was curious how such a thing could hold so much power, and yet, meaning nothing all the same. It could mean the world to one, and be no more significant than a single speck of dust or grain of sand to another. It's power relied on what people gave it, and in the wizarding world, people seemed to give certain ones, a great deal of power and weight, and his happened to be one of those names. Draco Malfoy. His name was Draco Malfoy. A flicker of recognition passed through her eyes as she took his name in and the sound of it reached her ears, a flicker he had to see, but her smile didn't fade, if anything, it only seemed to grow warmer at the knowledge that she now knew his name. Draco. She had heard things about the Malfoy family, terrible, horrible things, including things the man before her had done, but she wasn't going to shame him for them, or treat him any differently than she had from when she did not know his name. Her grandmother had taught her not to hedge someone, or make assumptions before getting to know them herself, and she was still under the impression that that was the right thing to do. No one was exactly as they seemed; everyone had reasons, and parts to them that so few would ever know, and it wasn't fair to judge them over a first glance, or on words they had heard about them from someone who was not at all them. Words could be carried and twisted as easily as thin branches bent with the wind, and turned into a harmful poison as the gossip spread, and hardly anything one heard of someone in such a manner was completely true. Something was always a little stretched, or unsure, and Leona wasn't one to believe any of them until she got to know whom they were about, and that was going to be no different with him. She wanted to form her opinions of him completely by herself, without the influence of pesky rumors and all the horrible things she had heard besmirching his name.
xxx"It's a pleasure to meet you, Draco." Leona replied, her smile warming. She liked his name, and not only because it had connections to both creatures, and the starts. It suited him, well, and she hoped she'd get the chance to say it again. "I've heard a lot about your family. Our families used to know each other, I think, a long, long time ago, though I don't believe they were friends. By my understanding, Gryffindors and Slytherins have never quite gotten along. Regardless, and before I start to ramble, I'm glad to have finally met someone from a family I've heard so much about." Leona confessed, a redness creeping up onto her cheeks again. She was talking too much again wasn't she? Hopefully she wasn't being too friendly, or talking too much though, and just making a horrible mess of things. Hopefully she also wasn't over sharing too much either, or ruining things by mentioning that their families once knew each other a long time ago. She had heard the name Malfoy many times at home from her grandmother, in stories that had been passed down to her, and in the many complaints her family had about the International Statute of Secrecy. The Malfoy family had opposed it, due to their connections to high standing no-maj at the time, and even if their reasons were probably rooted in selfishness and vanity, and a desire for riches and power, or something of the sort, they had still opposed the statute, as her family had, and that wasn't something they had forgotten. It hadn't at all been something to mend the two families' distaste for the other however, and she hoped that her mentioning the main reason why wouldn't drive Draco away. A Gryffindor, even a pureblooded one, was still a Gryffindor, a member house that always seemed to oppose that of Slytherin, and the Malfoys, were very much, a part of Slytherin. Draco didn't strike her as just any old regular Slytherin though, or someone like the rest of his family, and the tales she had heard of them; there was something special to him, something different. She so hoped that she was right about that, and that her words wouldn't cause him to leave without another word. She didn't want to stop talking to him so soon, even if it was an incredibly unrealistic desire.

xxxFrom what she had heard, if it was to be trusted of course, and not just rumors made to smear their reputation and name, the Malfoys were not just any wizarding family, or normal by any means. They were a part of the Sacred Twenty-Eight, were quite well known, and a name many knew. They were a family of importance, of prestige, and seemed to be quite proud of it if the way Draco had introduced himself, with his surname before his own- even though she sensed it had since lost that quality to it, and was now nothing more than an introduction, as it likely always should have been-, was anything to go by. They had also been a family death eaters aligned with the Dark Lord Voldemort for the first and second wizarding wars, until the very end of the second, where they all had a change of heart and switched sides, defecting from the dark, and evading the consequences that those still alive who stayed with Voldemort faced after his demise at the hands of a seventeen year old boy she still failed to see the appeal to, besides the fact he had twice defeated one of most evil wizards that had ever walked the Earth. Before then, after his father had managed to evade spending the rest of his days in Azkaban by pleading he had been under the Imperius Curse at the end of the first wizarding war, at the end of what she believed would have been Draco's fifth year, the man's luck had run out, and he had ended up imprisoned there for some time, after failing a mission given to him by Voldemort, and getting caught by the Ministry. She didn't know much more about that situation other than that, or how the man even got out or was released, as she had only been fourteen at the time, and only knew about it after hearing her parents talk about the trials, and catching a glimpse of the headline of a Daily Prophet article highlighting his trials that a patron hailing all the way from Britain had brought with them at the time, and left there, but regardless, her heart went out to Draco for what he must have endured during that time. If her father or mother was going through a trial and sentenced to end up in some horrid place like Azkaban, she didn't know what she would have done, and she couldn't even begin to imagine what Draco had gone through and felt then. His family seemed extremely close from the little she knew, and that coupled with being under the harsh scrutiny of the public eye during a difficult time, must have just made things miserable for him, and so very hard. Draco didn't deserve to go through that, at all. She wished there was something she could have done to help, but she knew there was never anything she could have done, and that it was pointless to wish. She didn't know about Lucius Malfoy- except for the fact he had nearly gotten Hagrid's Hippogriff, Buckbeak, killed after he had injured Draco when the boy had startled him, which was another issue entirely that she had a number of issues with regarding the older man-, his father, or his mother, as she hadn't met either of them and likely never would, but Draco at least, did not strike her as evil, or close to it at all. There was a goodness to him that she could sense, but only faintly, as if he were blocking everyone, even himself, from his feelings. She had heard that he was a skilled Occlumens, so perhaps that was it, though she had never known the skill or it's magic to hide feelings, or the heart; only the thoughts, and the mind, so she wasn't sure. It could also be that, with all the trials he had faced, he had gotten used to compartmentalizing what he felt, forcing it down and keeping his feelings in a closed box under lock and key, and if that was the case, she wished there was something she could do to ease that. She couldn't even begin to imagine what he had gone through, all the horrors he had seen and been a witness too. Leona wished she could do something, she so wished she did, but there was nothing she could do. This was a simple meeting on the street, and they were likely never to cross paths again, and no matter how much she wanted to help, she also had a strong feeling that even if they did have another encounter, he wouldn't want it. No one deserved to go through such things alone, but if they chose to, and if he chose to, there was nothing she could do but offer and say she was there, and be a friend if he let her, which she certainly couldn't do unless they met many times again.

xxxAt the feeling of his hand slipping from her own as he began to pull it back, she was brought from the deepness her thoughts and back into reality with a sudden force, a hard, chilling rush that was almost too rapid for her to process. She could only blink, and watch him with round eyes. Her hand felt suddenly very cold at the absence of the warmth of his against her own. She missed it. She missed the feeling, the warmth. After a heartbeat of hovering in the air, as if it wasn't yet aware his hand was gone, her hand fell back to her side. He gave a small nod, of what looked to be an ending of the conversation of sorts, an affirmation that his question had been answered and that they were alright, and then moved to step away, and she felt herself fill with disappointment. She really had no right to be disappointed, if she was honest, she had already likely extended this interaction far beyond what it was meant to be, when she was almost certain that it was meant to be nothing more than him checking on her to see if she was alright after bumping into her completely on accident, receiving and answer, and then going on his merry way, but nonetheless, she couldn't help the feeling spreading throughout her form, and weighing her down. She didn't want their conversation to be over just yet, she wanted to get to know him more, to keep talking, but she never should have hoped for that to happen to begin with. It only led to this disappointment enveloping her, because really, conversations and friendships didn't exactly often sprout from accidentally bumping into someone on a crowded street, as someone was inevitably to do. He didn't turn away though, or walk away and leave, as she realized a moment later, and she couldn't hide the large smile that returned to her lips, before she pressed them closed again. The smile crept to her eyes as he then began to speak, the start of a question falling from his lips, and his brows pushing together as he took a pause, before continuing again, speaking the next part of the question. Dewitt's name sounded soft coming from him, and his accent, and she liked it, and enjoyed the sound of it, probably more than she should have. Her smile came back as he finished his inquiry, asking if she thought the Demiguise was actually able to understand her, and she gave a rather enthusiastic nod, tilting her head so she could better see the creature in question as her eyes remained on Draco. She enjoyed questions like those, as it showed they had an interest in learning about the animals she so loved, and even if it didn't seem to be one that was pressing on the forefront of his mind, she was still happy that he had asked it. It meant that they had a little more time to talk, and that maybe, he was genuinely interested in knowing more. Leona doubted that that was the case, but she wasn't about to deny him an answer if it gave her an excuse to talk to him more. Besides, knowledge should never be a thing that was barred from anyone, everyone had a right to learn if they chose to, and to pursue it however much they liked. If he had a question, and it gave them more time together, she was more than happy to answer it. Dewitt's tail brushed against her side, a movement she very lightly felt through the fabric if her several layers of clothes, and the hand threading through his soft fur moved to give his chin a little scritch with the tips of her fingers. He closed his eyes in contentment, and she didn't waste a second in answering. "Oh yes, of course! All creatures can understand, they're a lot more intelligent than most people think. I've been to many corners of the world in my travels, and I've yet to meet a creature that hasn't." Leona answered, grinning widely. Never once had she doubted that her animals could understand, even when it took some of them awhile to get there, and others didn't quite want to listen. Even if some couldn't grasp the meaning of the words in the way others could, they could still understand enough, from the emotions they gleaned, and the body langue and subconscious signals one gave off. They were good at detecting that, and getting a sense of things. Sometimes they even knew what she was feeling before she could put a name to it or figure it out herself, and she valued that so much. She was never alone when she had her creatures, and had them to always understand. Animals listened without judgment, without preconceptions, and only the smallest of handfuls could actually respond in her own language, and once their loyalty and trust was earned, it was there forever, and it was one of the most precious things in the world. They were the best listeners in the entire world, and their love was unconditionally given without a request for anything in return. It was why she much preferred animals to people, and had always thought they were far superior to her own kind. Humans could be greedy, monstrous, cruel things, and while creatures could be the most greedy little things when it came to food, or shiny things in the case of Niffy, they didn't lust and hunger for power, or posses an insatiable thirst for it that corrupted even the purest of souls once they had a taste, and while she had met people with hearts blacker than night, she had never once met a creature with such a rotted, empty heart. Animals were good, and they listened, and understood, and she hoped that Draco could see that.
xxxAfter a moment though, she realized that her answer was probably a bit too vague, and hardly gave anything to go by, and she felt her cheeks once again begin to turn a noticeable red. Of course just a yes and a tiny bit more wasn't enough, or at least, not good enough. He deserved a better answer than just that, and before she could stop herself, her lips parted again and she began to speak, her words quick and hurried like a ramble to start, before they slowed and gained a confidence that seeped into her as well, and she entered a mode she knew well. "Granted, my creatures likely aren't the best show of that though, as I've spent a lot of time teaching them commands, in case it's ever needed, so they understand better than most. Like," Leona began, before pausing, and taking a moment to figure out what she could have one of her creatures do that would help to prove that they understood, and wasn't just something like sit, a leaned motion associated with a word or hand signal after repeatedly. teaching them together with treats and positive reinforcement. She needed something unique, something that they couldn't infer from anything but her words, and it only took her another second to get something in mind.
xxx"Godric?" Her head leaned in the direction of the owl's cage, and she gave a quiet whistle, but she didn't look to him, instead, her eyes remained on Draco. Godric looked up from cleaning his feathers, watching her closely, and standing at attention. "Would you raise your left foot, and the front talon on the right?" Leona asked, her gaze remaining on Draco's for a moment more, before her head turned to look down at the bird, who had followed her command perfectly, his foot in the air with the proper talon raised, and she glanced back at the man for a moment, sending him a grin. Her hand slipped from Dewitt's silky fur, and into her her jacket's pocket, which she then pulled Owl Treat from, and began leaning awkwardly down to press the treats to the owl through the cage's bars, her knees bending, and her body leaning uncomfortably to the side, so Dewitt wasn't set off balance by her leaning forward. The owl happily took the treat, and returned his foot to the cage's floor, his beak brushing against her fingers. Leona straightened, and as she clasped her hands together in front of her, and looked to Draco again, felt the blush returning. That probably hadn't been necessary at all, and was likely a bit too unpleasantly showoff-y. Her expression turned apologetic again, before she shook her head faintly, and continued, hoping that she hadn't just severely messed this all up. "Anyway, just because they can understand however, doesn't mean they'll always listen. Dewitt and Godric listen extraordinarily well, but my Niffler, Niffy, for example, most certainly does not. To get her to listen, you must first bribe her with something shiny, as Nifflers are quite attracted to shiny things, you see. I'd bring her out of my bag to show you, but it's a busy street, and I don't quite trust my pair of Golden Snidgets not to fly out and be near impossible to catch again, as they used to be used in place for the Golden Snitch in Quidditch, before they became endangered, and are not the easiest to catch, as I'm sure you can imagine. You probably don't have the time for that anyway; I imagine you have somewhere to be." The words fell from her lips quicker than she would have liked, and as she finished, and the realization that he likely had somewhere to be and probably didn't have time for this, hit her, her heart fell, and her voice grew calmer, softer, almost sad, and very apologetic. "If I've kept you from that somewhere, I'm truly sorry. My brother and I should be heading to the Hogwarts Express now, so we aren't late, but apparently, it takes quite a long time to obtain a wand and show someone a Bowtruckle they named after them. Creatures do understand what we're saying though, you just have to talk, and allow them to listen." Leona apologized sincerely, her gaze softening, and a hint of annoyance creeping into her voice toward the end, at the length of time it was taking her brother to return, before it grew softer again, and more subdued, and her gaze was quickly directed at the floor. The annoyance was not at all directed at the man before her though, and she hoped he realized that. It was merely her worry for her brother and Hollivander finally beginning to poke through, and her worry that they wouldn't make it to the train on time. She looked up at him through her lashes, and let out a soft sigh. She really had thoroughly jumbled this up, hadn't she? Leona had probably really done it now, and if she had, and he left, she would likely never see him again outside of pictures upon a newspaper, and he would leave her feeling less than pleasant, which was something she never wanted to happen. He had been through enough he didn't need her just confusing his day and making things strange and odd, and she never wanted to offend him in any way.

Image
━mischievous and brave━━
Image
━━━━━━━and quidditch━━━
xxxUpon first learning that he would be attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, what had he been expecting? He didn't really even know what he had been expecting honestly, but he just knew he hadn't been expecting this, or that he would break someone's lamp the first time he ever used a wand. That was definitely something he did not at all think would happen, or whatsoever expect. It was probably something he should have been able to predict, but he hadn't, and he was still feeling a bit shaken because of it. Was that a normal response that wands gave when they rejected who was attempting to use them? Or was there something wrong with him, and it wasn't supposed to be like that at all? He knew his mother's wand was made of a wood that would conjure up a spontaneous lighting strike if another witch or wizard tried to steal it, but this wand didn't already have a possessor that he could steal from, and it hadn't been a strike of lighting, and the wood was an ashy white, not the bright orangey brown color laurel wood possessed, so that couldn't be it. Was the wand's reaction normal then, and he just didn't know enough about wands to tell? He hoped that was it, he really did. He really didn't want to cause Mr. Ollivander any extra trouble because he was some special case that made it difficult and destructive to pair him with a wand. His knowledge of the wizarding world was admittedly severely limited to the very specific select few things that he had great interest in, and then what he had seen and heard from his sister and parents, so he wasn't sure if he and ever known enough to make assumptions about the wizarding world, let alone what it was like in Britain, which save for Quidditch, he knew absolutely nothing about. He knew they called non magical people muggles here, and that they had Lord Voldemort and that his followers were called death eaters, and a large portion of the history of Hogwarts and a lot about Gryffindor, but that was about it, and now that he was here, and actively realizing how little he knew, he started to feel like that was probably something he should really look into and find out more on once he had the chance, and some spare time after settling in to the life of his new school and adjusting to being so far from home. Maybe Leona could tell him more, or he'd make a friend who could, so he wouldn't have to read even more books. He could still feel how heavy the ones he needed for school felt in his arms as he packed them in his bag. At least he knew about Quidditch already, so he wouldn't have to read up on that. Quidditch was probably the one thing he did know enough about to expect, and he was so very excited for it. He had never seen a game of it before, so hopefully now, at a school that had it's own teams, he'd get to watch some games, and play once he was a little older, because according to his sister he wasn't allowed to play his first year, and his mom wouldn't let him anyway. He didn't see why she wouldn't even let him practice even with that; she had gone to study the Snidgets to learn more about them for him, and end up bringing two home, so why couldn't he practice with their help? He wasn't going to hurt them, he knew what he was doing, and he really could be gentle, and she could trust him. Hollivander was a lot more delicate than walnut sized flying kiwis- which Leona would most certainly scold him for saying-, and she trusted him with him, so why couldn't he practice with Widget and Gidget? He was finally so close to his dream, why couldn't she just let him at least chase after them on foot? Didn't she realize he and been waiting for this for so long, and that if he wanted to make the team when he could play he needed to learn now, and there was no one in America who could help him, because their eyes were on a different wizarding sport? Couldn't she see that?
xxxAmerica had Quodpot, but to him, it was a sorry, shoddy replacement for the thrilling sport that was Quidditch, that he wanted nothing more than to play as a seeker, with his only goal to catch the bloody Snitch before the seeker of the opposing team did, and avoid being knocked out or off his broom by a passing Bludger and other players. Quidditch had so much to it, whereas Quodpot, was merely two teams attempting to get the Quod, a ball of leather, into the pot at the end of the pitch before it exploded. If it exploded while in the possession of a player, that player had to leave the field of play. Explosions could be fun and entertaining he supposed, but what was so special about it when they could be doing Quidditch instead? Quodpot was literally just a magical, glorified version of that boring old hot potatoes game his no-maj friend Brandon mentioned his school playing all the time in his elementary school, and if he wanted to see something explode he could just mix vinegar and baking soda and put it in something, there was nothing so special about thar. It was better than pointlessly kicking or throwing a ball around like practically all no-maj sports, but it was no were near as fun as Quidditch, and it seemed really wasteful too. So many materials would be lost each time the stupid thing exploded, and that didn't seem quite right to him. His parents had taught him never to be wasteful with the things he had, and to not take them for granted, and an exploding ball seemed quite contradictory to that. There was a chance it was pieced back together or something, but he doubted that, and if that was the case, he didn't care enough to find out about it. Explosions also seemed a bit too dangerous too, and even though his favored sport was not at all by any means not dangerous, explosives just struck him as crossing a sort of line of dangerous but still safe enough to play, and dangerous and probably not smart to do. If he had to play it he was also certain that he'd be too scared of it exploding on him to do anything right, and he did fun imagine how the people who played it weren't constantly overcome by nerves on that. Quidditch was risky, and nerve wracking too, he was sure, but at least death by explosion wasn't really a huge possibility, and he didn't have the fear about being removed from the game because a ball went boom in his hands. Quidditch was thrilling, and involved flying through the air with his hair trailing in the wind, and nothing but freedom and excitement coursing through his veins. To him, it was the obvious choice, but not many witches and wizards of the United States saw it that way, unfortunately. At least now, people here would understand his love for it, and maybe he'd even be lucky enough to meet some seekers and others who really played the sport, and loved it just as much as he did.

xxxWhen Hollivander made a face and stuck his tongue out at the girl with a rude noise coming from his mouth at what she called him, Percy watched as her head leaned suddenly back small bit at the sound. Had that startled her? Her eyes narrowed and her brows furrowed the tiniest amount at it, and Percy had to hold himself back from tilting his head curiously at that. He could completely understand her having never seen a Bowtruckle before, and he was sure she hadn't given her question and comparison to a chocolate frog and enchanted twig, but had she presumed that he couldn't understand her? He had found it silly the way Leona talked to her creatures the first time he had been old enough to understand it and actually comprehend what was going on, but then he noticed the way they responded to her, and he realized they fully understood. It wasn't even that she had just trained them really well either; on multiple occasions he had seen Dewitt helping her with her routine and caring for her creatures and understanding words and phrases that just couldn't be trained. Her other creatures understood too, Winks especially. The bright orange Half-Kneazle cat would burst in no matter where he was whenever someone so much as mentioned a game, and he watched the television like he could actually completely and fully understand what was going on, and Percy didn't doubt at all they he truly did. He still had a scratch mark on his wrist from trying to change the channel during one of Winks' favorite shows. The Bowtruckles his sister had, and her Snallygaster Gastor also understood flattery and their language perfectly well, and the latter creature would often get quite offended and demanding if he hadn't lately relieved compliments. He knew her Occamies also understood her too, but only her. They didn't really white like anyone else besides her, expect for Felicis, who preferred people to her siblings, and seemed to at the very least tolerate everyone else. He wanted to say her Mooncalves knew what people were saying too, but there were just so many of them, and they were all so unified, that he couldn't at all tell. He knew Leona would be able to, and he wanted to ask, but he knew he'd just feel stupid asking, and he didn't like to feel that, even though she never answered in a way that made him feel dumb or any less intelligent. He just didn't enjoy asking her things that she knew so well that he probably should have already picked up and known just from living with her and watching her care for her creatures during the times she returned home for the special holidays, and his birthday. She always let him in the bag with her to see her creatures and sometimes help her and Dewitt with them if she trusted him enough, which he enjoyed, at least, when she didn't task him with feeding Gastor his dinner because Leona refused to touch the meat he ate, and always got sick when she was near it. She was really affected by things like that, and supposedly it was an empath thing; feeling the remnants of the life of the creature still there, but it wasn't something he wanted to ask her, and he doubted that his parents knew enough about it to properly explain to him what it was and why she had such a strong, overwhelming reaction to it that would even bring tears to her eyes at times. She didn't come with him and their parents to Thanksgiving when they had with their dad's family for that reason too, or any meals they were going to have over there, as they didn't share the same reverence and love for animals that she had, and had yet to grasp that being so much as near it could make her sick. Thankfully Leona could usually just lead Gastor to his food when he was hungry, or have someone else take it too him if he couldn't be trusted so close to her hut and the careful setups of feeder insects that she raised for her creatures that enjoyed them as ether dinner, or snacks, so his sister didn't suffer with that too much. He was really glad of that; Leona was his sister, and he didn't like to see her in distress or hurting. He knew it was a car find she was willing to take for her own creatures though, because unlike people, the carnivorous ones, didn't have the choice to just change their diet. They needed it, and she understood that, and never once tried to change or fight that design. He knew that she had tried steeling herself to it before, but it didn't work. She just felt things too strongly, and too much, to just shut her heart down for those feeding times. Hollivander wasn't one of the carnivorous ones as far as he knew though, so at least Leona never had issues with him or her other four Bowtruckles in that regard. That did mean that he rarely got to do things with them however, so this was one of the few times he really got to be with them, and so far he was quite enjoying it. He liked the way the small creature was reacting to the girl and the way she curiously watched him, and how offended he got at being called a twig. The girl so far struck him as really expressive too, and he liked that as well, though it would take a lot to get him to admit that aloud.

xxxGreen eyes quickly turned to him when he spoke, and he found himself almost startled with how quickly they turned back to him. When he continued talking more, it seemed that along with her eyes, her interest had also shifted to him from Hollivander, and he really didn't know what to think. He had never met a girl his age before, or at least, not really ever talked to a girl his age like this before, as he had met a couple when he was close to Brandon, and some grandmothers would bring their granddaughters into their shop when they stopped by, and he'd have the privilege of meeting them then. She wasn't like the others though, there was something different about her, and he really, truly, did not know what to think. There was this large energy to her, a large, but good presence that overwhelmed him a little, but he didn't dislike it, or even mind it, not really. It wasn't something he was used to, but he sort of liked it. He had never met someone who seemed that way before, and it intrigued him too. His father had a calm disposition, and was thoughtful, quiet, and while he was warm and friendly and almost cuddly- ick, he hated describing his dad like that, even if the term fit- at times, he still felt a bit imposing, and very knowledgable and smart. His mother was immediately a warm wave of ocean, a large smile ad motherly hugs, and not at all intimidating, and yet, her presence still felt small, not pressing any boundaries. Respectful, yet playful and very loving, knowing exactly what to do to bring someone a smile, and then there was his sister, Leona, who was harder to describe. Odd was the best way he could put it, always different feeling, sometimes a larger presence sometimes smaller, barely there, and she was such a range of emotions and feelings, that could so quickly change, almost a mix of everyone around, because she sometimes felt what they did in a sense, when she wasn't blocking them out. Or something like that anyway, he really didn't know if that was it, he really didn't know much about empaths. He knew empathy was sharing one's feelings, as opposed to sympathy which was feeling for someone, and compassion, which was closer to sympathy and concern, but he didn't know what an empath was, other than they felt what others did, sometimes, if they could control it, and that they tended to be more in tune with the earth and living things, or something, apparently, he didn't know. Percy doubted that the girl he was chartering away to was an empath though, and he still couldn't think of anyone who had a presence quite like she did. His uncle was probably the closest, but he had a larger energy because he was boisterous and playful, or his aunt, who was more of a gossip and liked to tease and know what everyone was doing, and cause Leona a great deal of embarrassment with warnings he didn't quite understand. When he was older he'd probably get them, but for now, he had absolutely no idea about what things like some stupid BBB Rule that had Leona turn into a tomato and go speechless for a moment as she processed the words, meant. The girl wasn't anything like his aunt and uncle at all though, and so far, he kinda liked her better than he liked them. He loved his aunt and uncle of course, they were family, he loved them dearly, but they could really be a bit much, and he didn't at all care for his dad's brother trying to show him boring old no-maj magic tricks everytime he overheard them talking about magic and assumed both the kids in the family just really liked magic tricks and shows like he and his brother had as kids. Percy was a wizard, he didn't need some no-maj showing him stupid card tricks when he could do magic on his own, and would soon be getting a real wand, not one of those flimsy plastic black ones with white caps on either end. He had gotten one in a magic set from his uncle for his birthday over the summer, and god he hated it. At least now he was finally getting a real wand, and not something insulting like that one. He just had to wait for Ollivander to get back with one that seemed to suit him, and hope it was the right one, or maybe hope it wasn't, so he'd get to talk to the girl longer. That wasn't right to think though, or fair to her, and he wasn't even sure if she wanted to talk to him, he had noticed her distinct lack of a reply so far as he talked her ear off, and she had just been standing there in her place watching him talk, staying quiet as he rambled away.
xxxAt least so far instead of being annoyed like he worried, she seemed amused by the spectacle of him not knowing when to shut up and stop spewing such a slew of questions at her, her lips still maintaining the smile that had grown on them at the sight of Hollivander when she had finally decided to pay him mind. It thankfully stayed that way until he asked if her family was wizarding or no-maj, and he felt his heart stop in his chest as her dark brows furrowed, and her head tilted at the question. Oh darn. Darn it, darn it, darn it. He had just really messed up hadn't he? Blood purity was a big thing over here, right? Was her family big on it, was she big on it? Would she stop talking to him because he had confessed that his family was a mix of both? His family had been very much pureblooded until his mother had married his father and they had his sister and himself, with their family tree containing nothing but wizards as far back as anyone could trace. Of course, some siblings of his many generations of grandparents with several greats before their names had married those who were not pureblooded on rare occasions, but until his father, his line of the family at least, contained no one with no-maj blood. If she was going to leave because he wasn't pureblooded, or if he had ruined things because of that, then maybe he could convince her to stay by telling her that, and continue talking to her. He really wanted to get to know her, or at the very least, learn her name, which she hadn't given to him yet, and he feared she wouldn't if he had offended her with talking so much and asking so many things and finishing with a question that was probably controversial here, or at the very least, incredibly odd, unusual, and problematic. Dang it. Fu- no, he couldn't say that word, or even think it. His mom had raised him better than that.
xxxAs he apologized for all the questions he had asked in such quick succession, and silently for the one he feared upset her, his thoughts too consumed by it all, he didn't even notice that the amusement was still there, and hadn't gone, and even when he did finish his apology and managed to search her features again for confirmation that he hadn't just wrecked this and made waiting for Mr. Ollivander to return incredibly awkward, he didn't notice. His attention was on something else instead now. Something that both confused, and relieved him. Her lips had lowered slightly into a faint smirk. Did that mean, did he dare hope? Had he not just messed everything up and offended her? It didn't seem like he did, and when she answered the question he had been so worried about, he felt himself deflate with relief, and send her a smile. She had answered wizarding, decidedly wizarding. So she was either a pureblood then, or just had two parents that were wizards. Either way that was cool, and he wanted to know more, and even though he probably should have just kept his mouth shut and answered with a smile and a nod, he couldn't help but begin excitedly talking again, not being able to hide how relieved he was that she wasn't upset with him. "Were you surrounded by a lot of magic then? I sort of was, but my family does a lot of stuff like no-ma-er, muggles do, because my dad is one. He researches magic though, to help both wizards and muggles learn more about it, and he probably knows more about it than a lot of witches and wizards do, I think." Percy asked, smiling widely and curiously until he realized what he had said, and his eyes widened, and he began to quickly scramble to clarify his words. "N-not that wizards and witches don't know anything or anything like that! Just that he spends all day reading about magic and looking into it as much as he can, so he knows a lot." Percy quickly added, spewing out the words hurriedly, and then sheepishly towards the end, his cheeks heating up and turning red, hoping that he hadn't managed to offend her some how, given that she came from a decidedly wizarding family.

xxxWhile he waited for Mr. Ollivander to come back, after quickly explaining to the girl where he was and why he wasn't here, his hands found their way to his robes, feeling the fabric. They were rather plain right now, and lacking any color, as the robes probably always looked until the wearer was sorted, and they got new clothes to wear along with the robes in place of the generic pieces to match their new house, and blend right in with them. He could feel the Bowtruckle moving about on his shoulder and the back of his neck, trying to get a better look at the girl and examine her better, as if he were trying to figure her out and why she had insulted him so. Clearly the creature had a significant ego, and wasn't inclined to just let her of knowing what he was and call her the only thing that came to mind, go. Of course it was just his luck that the one he had named after a man that seemed very kind and on the humble easy going side, had the biggest ego of the lot. Maybe it was the holly part of his name. Holly berries were poisonous, right? Or was he thinking of some other bright red berry common found on Christmas wreaths that his mother had told him. Either way, he was now seeing that the name may not be as perfectly suited as he once thought, and that perhaps he should have named this one Vinneas, and the other Hollivander, but then, at the same time, Vinneas was on the grouchier side, and was much less fond of human contact, which Ollivander did not at all seem to be; a grouchy antisocial person would have been more than a little displeased at a lamp being broken by some overzealous boy, so maybe he had made the correct choice with their names after all. The Bowtruckles seemed to like them too, or at least he figured they did, as if they didn't, given their attitudes, they probably wouldn't answer to them, so if nothing else, he could be confident that he had given them names they approved of.
xxxBefore he was allowed to get too deep into his thoughts, and hardly notice what was going on around him, Garrick Ollivander finally returned, no he spoke a few words to the girl before they ceased and the old man went back to him. She gave a small smile to the man at his acknowledgment, before her fingers settled against her skirt again, and her attention seemed to be placed in watching Percy talk with the wand making man. She appeared to be watching the exchange with interest from what he could glimpse out of the corner of his eye, as well as what he thought was excitement. Was she excited for him to get his wand, or excited that getting her own was no so very near? He was excited for both things honestly, very eager to see what his own would be, and if this one would be it, and what hers would turn out to be too, if he was able to wait to see. He had never seen someone else get their wand before, and he was curious to see how different her experience was to her own, if she allowed him to see it too, that is. He didn't want to overstay any welcomes if the young witch wanted him gone while she got her own. He caught a glimpse of her brows furrowing at the description of the wand Ollivander gave, but he hardly noticed it, or took the observation in, he was too focused on the wand, and eager to see if this one would match him, because he liked the way it sounded. A mischievous wand sounded like it would be a good friend, and if he did match with it, and it chose him, he hoped that they'd be able to get into lots of trouble together, and have loads of fun. When he gave the wand a wave, and she watched him do the motion, he noticed in the corner of his eye that her eye brows had shot up as it gave off a few gentle sparks. Once the older man confirmed that the sparkles meant the wand had chosen him, he took a moment to peer closer at it, his index finger trailing along the patterns engraved into the oddly, creamy, yet ashy, pink colored wood. The reaction really was anticlimactic, wasn't it? Why wasn't it more like vine wood, which would emit a puff or cloud or smoke when it's perfect match would so much as walk through the door of the shop it was in? Would her wand respond any more excitingly to her when she got the right one? At least she seemed excited when he looked to her again, and watched as the older man turned his attention to her, exclaiming he knew just the thing, before he walked off again, disappearing behind the tall shelves. She took a few small steps forward and closer to him, still excitedly waiting as they waited for him to come back, and began to talk as she seemed to notice his gaze was also in the direction the old man had went.

xxxHe turned to her when he heard her pretty accented voice again, noticing how close she had gotten, and that the corners of her lips had pulled upward into a smirk. He wasn't sure how he felt about her being close, or so amused with him still. He bit his lip, and listened to her question. She was asking him if there really weren't chocolate frogs in America, and then she went on to say that she had never been to his country was from someplace called Yorkshire, which isn't stay made him think of the cute little terrier dog that shared it's name. He felt himself blush a little as she finished, pointing out how it was strange to not have the candy but have a Bowtruckle, and he gave the smallest of shrugs so as to not greatly disturb the creature on his shoulders now fixing her with a steady glare. "If they do, I wouldn't know. There aren't many magical places around where I live in New York, in some old shopping district in the city, and our shop doesn't carry any sweets, since my mom knows I'd eat them all. I think we tried it once, but before I was born, and when we had Puffskeins while my grandma was alive, I think they kept eating them." Percy explained, his hand tightening around the engravings on his wand, and his other coming to run his fingers along the rest. It was thinner than he expected now that he felt it more, but before he could look more at it, and focus on the way it felt, and the weird warm feeling that still lingered, he felt a sharp tug on his hair, and his head sharply turned to look at the Bowtruckle who had just yanked his hair. He frowned at the creature, and was about to look to the girl again, before he caught the look he was giving him. Oh, he wanted him to say something. He let out a sigh, and looked to the young witch again. "And I really don't think he likes you calling him a twig. I've only seen him do that when Leona shows a little extra care to Pickwickett. The rest of them think he's her favorite, when he just has more needs than they do." Percy added, the hand previously trailing along his wand coming to rub the spot where his hair had just been pulled. He winced. Ow. For a green collection of tiny sticks and leaves, he was strong, and by no means weak. No wonder they could guard their trees so fiercely. Ouch. When he focused on her again he saw that a smirk was playing on her lips, and he swallowed. She told him her name then, returning to their earlier conversation, if his bombardment questions could even be called that, and he smiled, a pink dusting coming to his cheeks. Her name was Rosie. Rosie Adelinde. Rosie. He liked that. Rosie. "I like your name Rosie, It's pretty." Percy told her softly, his dark brown eyes tentatively attempting to meet her orbs of green. He felt a bit shy in doing so, and hoped she wouldn't notice. He was about to say more, and tell her his last name as he had forgotten that upon introducing himself, but then Ollivander returned, and his attention turned to him, and the feeling of the Bowtruckle making it's way into the hood, or whatever that was, of his robes. Clearly he trusted Rosie even less than he trusted Percy. Interesting. The older man held a box within his hands, and was already taking out the wand by the time his attention was completely on them both. She took it from him very willingly, and held it parallel to her body with her hands, similar to how he had held it before, and Percy tilted his head as she observed that it looked like her fathers. She seemed really excited at that, and eh could understand why. It would be cool to have something that looked similar to someone he loved and admired, but he personally much preferred something unique to call his own. His head tilted even further as the man corrected her, mentioning cedar wood, like her father's, but with a different core. So her dad's was made of cedar and dragon heartstring? That seemed like a cool combination. He noticed how she didn't seem to be too pleased with a Unicorn hair being the core though, as her brow raised in distaste, and he could sort of understand why; she didn't strike him as someone who fit it. Unicorn hair cores seemed to be for people who were softer and gentler, and Rosie struck him as more determined, and passionate, and well, not soft. His sister's wand had a Unicorn hair core, and so did his grandmother's, and his mom's, well he didn't know what core his mom's wand was made from, probably because he never asked. He guessed it would be something similar though, he couldn't imagine anything else. At least he knew what his was now, Pheonix feather, and it was the core his sister wished she had, because it would often do a spell on its own, and show some life, like a creature, and she liked that, a lot. While most hated such a quality, his sister adored it, and made her wish her ten inch cypress wand's core was that of a feather from a fiery Pheonix, rather than the hair of a graceful Unicorn. Percy couldn't picture her with a Pheonix feather core no matter how hard he tried though; Leona could definitely have a temper that came out of nowhere and was no less fiery than the hot flames of a Pheonix, but at her core she was softer, more caring, and gentle like a Unicorn. Her loyalty was won far quicker than a Pheonix's as well, which had only ever been tamed less times than the fingers on his hand. She was just as loyal as one once it's loyalty was earned though, that he didn't at all doubt. Leona was also apparently something called an empath, and a Unicorn struck him as far more empathetic than a Pheonix or a dragon. Nevertheless though, Rosie gave it a wave at his prompting, obliging, after giving a reluctant nod and taking care to position it away from them, and hold it like wizards did, and he jumped as a flurry of papers went flying in the back, and began to flutter down to the ground like a large leaf when autumn came. He should have prepared himself for that happening, but he hadn't even considered it then, and now he probably looked like a scaredy cat. At least she hadn't broken a lamp, and been smarter with her aim than he had. Paper was much easier to clean and tidy than shards of glass. He barely heard the older man comment that something else was in order, before he quickly went to search for something else. Hollivander began to poke out to see what the status was outside the hood, only to duck right back in, as the man returned, with a different wand this time. Rosie seemed more attracted to this one than the last, and he liked the idea of it being rare with a core like his own, but after his encouragement, and her wave of it, it was clear the wand wasn't as excited about her. A few boxes came flying down from a shelf on the top, and this time he only startled; he had been more prepared for it.
xxxOllivander confirmed the obvious as the wand was handed back, and he could feel Hollivander trying to go deeper, clearly wanting to be as far away from the commotion within the shop as possible. He didn't blame the creature; it was all probably extra thunderous and loud and scary for someone so small. Percy glanced to Rosie as the man hen to return the wand to it's box and find something new, and he saw that she appeared to be a bit disappointed, her brows furrowing. He opened his mouth to offer a few words of comfort, to say it had happened with him too, but then he heard the older man say something, and his head swiveled to watch. He was eyeing Rosie, likely in thought, considering the next option for her wand, and he watched as the wand maker then went to the back of his shop, climbing the ladder again, and the returning with something new a few moments later, the sound of his approaching footsteps reaching his ears. This one seemed to be promising, but then both of the last ones had to him, so what did he know? Percy watched curiously as he explained the wand, head cocking to the side in interest. Blackthorn sounded really cool, especially paired with dragon, and it sounded even cooler when he added it was the wand of a warrior, even if the man sounded more apprehensive as he spoke it. It was shorter than his's sister's wand, but he thought it suited her, better than the previous options, and he liked the way it seemed to have thorns engraved into the wood. It definitely fit her; she was a rose, and every rose had it's thorns. It was a unwise black color too, which he admittedly wished his own was. Pink was okay, but black, black was just badass. Rosie seemed to like the wand too though, which was what was really important in this situation, and he hoped that it worked out for her. He held his breath in anticipation as she raised it, slower than the last two, and then he broke out into a wide smile and released the air he was holding in his lungs as no destructive mishap occurred, and there seemed to be a light, a light of something good. The expression on her face told him all he needed to know too, that this wand had chosen her, and that it worked out. His smile only grew as the man confirmed it after she questioned it while looking up at him, and it only grew as he watched her beam. She had found her wand too! A really cool one at that.

xxxPercy made a move to put his wand in his pocket, as it seemed with her beginning to ask about payment that it was probably time to go, he then froze, and realized that he didn't know if he even had a pocket for his wand. He wanted to put his wand somewhere, then another realization hit him, he had no idea where people put their wands to begin with. They were too small for pants pockets, and he couldn't see one in his robes, and most wizards didn't even have robes to out them in outside of school. Where on Earth was he meant to keep it? Leona kept hers in her boot, and his mom sometimes kept hers in her hair when it was done up in a bun as an eccentric hair piece that held it in place, but he didn't have long hair or boots. Where was he supposed to keep it then? In his belt? Wouldn't he break it like that? Up his sleeve? No that would just fall out. Did wizards just always carry them around? Would he be allowed to have Godric with him to carry it so he didn't risk dropping it? The owl had been trained to catch and retrieve a wand no matter if it was thrown or accidentally dropped, so he could definitely do that, but he had a feeling the school wouldn't allow it. Was there a pocket for it in his robes and he was just blindly missing it? Probably, that seemed like the most probable answer, and he wanted to go and check to make sure, but he had a feeling that now was not at all the right time to go rummaging around in his clothes in front of people. He was in public, and spinning in circles and moving all which way, and this way and that, trying to find a pocket, was not exactly a proper thing. He could look closer on the train, when he was probably going to be sitting with his sister, and she wouldn't at all care. He then realized that Rosie and Ollivander weren't talking anymore as he finally focused on them again, and that now was finally the time to pay. He quickly stuck his hand into his pocket, and carefully pulled out all of the coin inside, holding it out to the old wand maker, his cheeks bright red. "Oh! Here you are Mr. Ollivander. My sister said this would be more than enough for the wand, and anything leftover can be for the lamp. I'm really sorry about that sir." Percy watched as the man smiled, the mirth reaching his eyes. Percy really liked this odd man, he decided. He hoped he'd get to see him again. "Thank you, Mr. Percy, but the lamp is an easy fix when you have a wand." Oh, right. Magic. That could fix things. He turned even redder. The wand maker only took enough for the wand, and left the rest behind, on his palm. Percy stuffed the remainder back in the pocket. "Go on now, I'm sure your sister has been waiting long enough, and you don't want to miss your train." The old man sent Percy a knowing smile, and then began making his way to some shelves in the back, finding his way to a ladder. Hollivander finally resurfaced from his robes, and returned to his shoulder. "Right, I should probably get going. Leona is probably getting worried, anyway. Goodbye Mr. Ollivander!" Percy gave the man a wave, which he only half caught, and then made his way toward the door, before pausing a heartbeat and turning to Rosie, who he finally realized, was still there. She hadn't left? He felt a happiness spread through him at that, and his hand tightened around his wand. Was she waiting for someone? Was she waiting for him? No, that couldn't be it. She had to be waiting for someone else. Maybe her dad? He bit his lip, and moved to stop in front of her. He took a deep breath, and then offered a small smile. "Will I see you again? On the train? Would you like to sit together?" Percy asked hopefully, watching her with dark eyes just as hopefull. He knew he should really be getting back to Leona, but he wanted to make sure that he'd see Rosie again first, because there was something special, and he didn't want to let that go so soon, and the never, ever see her again. He hoped that she could maybe be a friend here, too, and that couldn't happen if they parted ways here, and never crossed paths again. There was an incredibly high chance that she was going to Hogwarts like he was, and that they would definitely see each other again there, but he wanted to make sure. He didn't want to leave until he knew for certain if they would meet again.

Iris
Lovely Friend
Posts: 198
Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 12:50 pm

[ t h r e e ] took the road less traveled by

Post by Iris » Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:33 pm

xxxxImage
Image
Image
xImage
It wasn't a reaction he was accustomed to. The Malfoy name either incited respect or fear or suspicion, usually a combination of at least two, but for Draco to witness any other reaction felt like an impossibility, something that simply just never happened. Especially more recently, when fear and suspicion seemed to cling to the family wherever they went, felt by seemingly all who recognized them. It was a lonely existence, really, but it was what he was accustomed to, what he expected. What he did not expect, however, was for friendliness. Not the sort of friendliness that came out of fear, or the friendliness that came from respect, from aspiring to cling to the family in an attempt to sponge some of the power and wealth the family so notoriously possessed, as so many had attempted to do in the past. No, this seemed different. She seemed different. Different in so many ways that he couldn't yet even hope to comprehend, even if his mind wasn't already catching up to him, making him try to be more sensible. Talking to someone who wasn't like everyone else, as completely odd as she was, was a welcome reprieve from his reality. A reprieve, but one marked by brevity, by some nonsensical enjoyment.

She claimed to have heard a lot about his family, and yet it changed nothing. She still acted the same way after hearing the name as she had before, a reality which made him question whether or not she may have identified him before he had even introduced himself. Of course, such a thought was ridiculous, wasn't it? Even he knew that, really. It seemed like such a thought couldn't be even considered as anything but a conspiracy, a laughable one at that, but it was one that briefly ran through his mind before he dismissed it. Even if she had recognized him after he had walked in to her, it had been in exactly that order. He had walked in to her. Besides, there was a sense of sincerity in the way that she spoke that appealed to Draco more than he would care to admit in the moment. Then again, how surprising was it really? The crazy ones always were the most sincere, he reflected- at least, they were in his experience. The most insane person he had ever known was his own aunt Bellatrix, and had he ever met a person more sincere in his life? Certainly it was a sort of circumstance where all attributes needed to be weighed to get a good view of the woman for who she truly was, but with that one single attribute considered by itself, how could she be considered anything but sincere? She may have been a murderer, a mad woman who embraced her darkest tendencies, but she was honest. Honest to a fault, really, Draco had always thought. It was to her detriment, after all. While some other death eaters, members of his immediate family quite included in that group, had been smart enough -sane enough with the drive of self preservation to push them forward- to distance themselves from the dark lord after the conclusion of the first wizarding war, Bellatrix never would. Her loyalty to the dark lord was unwavering, she would never renounce her allegiance to him even if it meant rotting in the horror of Azkaban for a decade. Killing and torturing and quirks aside, Bellatrix was very sincere in her allegiance to her cause and to the dark lord. While perhaps it would be unfair to even consider Leona in the same breath as Bellatrix when considering depths and extent of insanity, Draco's thoughts were focused far more broadly on the connection to strange behavior and sincerity, and even then the thought was fleeting as she continued to speak and his mind moved on to new claims.

Even beyond her claiming to know of his family, something which objectively wasn't exactly that difficult to believe, given how prominent his family was, she claimed that their families knew each other. Of course, his first instinct was to think back on the family name she had given him rather than consider another name. The Deorne family? He had never heard of them, he was sure, as the name hadn't even sounded slightly familiar to his ears. Then she went on and there- there in was. She was from a family of Gryffindors? His history with the house hadn't exactly been a pleasant one, even by the incredibly low standards set between the two houses. Well, he could hardly disagree that if their families had known each other - a fact which he was spectacle of the accuracy regarding - they would hardly have been on friendly terms. While Draco's experience with the Gryffindor house had been particularly unfortunate, his family had been consistently a part of House Slytherin for generations. He wasn't exactly the first Malfoy to have to deal with the Gryffindors, even if he did think his own experience was particularly loathsome because he had to deal with everybody's precious beloved Harry Potter. Despite his dislike for the house, though, Draco immediately had to rationalize that the girl standing in front of him now that he was so willingly speaking with wasn't a part of that house. Between her accent and the way she spoke of the history between the two houses, that much was obvious. Besides, Hogwarts might have been a massive castle, but the student body wasn't exactly gigantic. They seemed to be around the same age, give or take a few years, and Draco was certain he would have seen her before if they had attended together- especially if she was a Gryffindor, who seemed to plague his existence during his school years. The only way he might not have noticed was if she had been a Hufflepuff, because really, with the exception of Cedric Diggory, who gave a damn about Hufflepuffs?

Of course, the fact that he pushed aside the fact that she was from a Gryffindor family could have been because he knew well that she hadn't personally been a part of the house. It could have been that, or perhaps he had grown out of childish rivalries between the two houses to his very core, that the events in his life had completely knocked that prejudice out of him. Yes, it could have been that. Or, maybe, just maybe, it could have been a combination of that and the sight of redness creeping across her cheeks once more. Admittedly, it was probably the latter, even if Draco had convinced himself that his mind wasn't going there. The sight of a blush spreading across the American witch's cheeks was an attractive one, an impossibly attractive one considering that she was already a beautiful woman. Draco wasn't usually the type to pay attention to such things, something as simple as the warming of someone's cheeks, but he noticed it with her and even after such a short period of time already knew that he was more than just objectively fond of the sight. Of course, he knew that, but he would never admit it. Not then, at least, because of course his mind wasn't going there. How could it be? It couldn't be, and so it wasn't- clearly. "Not traditionally close, I wouldn't say," Draco agreed with the sentiment of the two houses not historically getting along.

"Pleasure, I'm sure," Draco responded in kind to her words. It was a sort of natural response, a nearly dismissive one that he had used countless times before, but it honestly wasn't as if meeting her hadn't been. She was odd, certainly, and her creature was even more odd and she seemed to talk quite a bit, but Draco had chosen to stay for the moment rather than leaving immediately for a reason. Talking with most people was usually seen by the wizard as an entirely ridiculous affair, but she was different. Listening to her talk felt different, in a way that he so easily refused to even consider, but kept him standing there for a moment longer nonetheless. When he did choose to stay, he didn't miss the way her features lit up in to an attractive smile. How could he, after all? It was another welcome sight, but one that he never even considered was actually due to him. It wasn't that Draco lacked confidence, really; no, as anyone who had ever known Draco would come to know, of all the problems he had ever faced, the lack of an ego was absolutely not among them. It was just, again, that his mind wasn't there, fixated on such thoughts, at that time. Still, his mind was only pulled back to her answer to his question begrudgingly, the topic of which not something that had ever truly been weighing on his mind, after all. The answer she gave was one that was easily set aside by the wizard, if not dismissed. Sure, perhaps she obviously knew more about animals than he did, but every animal understood? It was one thing to confirm that a magical primate-looking-creature could understand, but every animal? What, was the American woman training slugs and dart frogs in her spare time? Still, Draco suppressed his sarcastic nature in the moment, at least verbally, to listen to her explain and give a brief demonstration with her owl to prove her point. It was a well trained owl, Draco had to admit, even after growing up around so many in the magical community. Hell, it seemed on par with the best of them he had seen. It almost reminded him of his owl pet eagle owl, a bird which had died in recent years after having him since childhood, though he had received the owl as a gift from his mother when it had already been trained. "Oh yeah, really witty, that one," he observed, choosing to leave out the mocking owl calls he had used so many times before when saying similar things when he was younger.

Draco listened as she went on, continuing to speak and explain first about her niffler - whatever the hell that was- but trying to explain to him the history of Golden Snidgets and how they were related to Quidditch. Despite himself, he found a small smirk pulling at his lips at the thought, unable to deny the bit of amusement that he got out of the thought. He had been the Slytherin seeker for most of his years at Hogwarts- he knew a thing or two about the game and the history of the Golden Snitch. Of course, that information was rather impressive for someone who had presumably never played the game, let alone played the game with the position of seeker, to know- still, the explanation amused him. Not even in a sort of way that was riddled with animosity, as it so often was with him, it was just that- amusement. Then, as soon as it happened, it was over, and her words were bringing him back to reality. He did have some place to be, as much as he didn't want to be there, and something in her voice changed as well. Still, he took one more moment of the reprieve, despite the reality that surrounded him. She was dropping her brother off at Hogwarts? It was the only logical assumption to be made by her words, he thought. "From Ollivander's?" He asked, eyeing the storefront they were standing near before looking to the witch in front of him. "The man's practically a relic in his own right, hardly the sharpest. He rattles on for a fair bit but eventually comes off it," he tried to explain why it might have been taking so long with a small shrug before pausing. "Well, thanks for the uh, demonstration, I'll keep that in mind," his eyes flickered down to the owl, "but you're right. I should be off now. It's been a pleasure, Deorne." His voice turned a bit more formal once more, only softening a bit with his five departing words, trying out the last name she had provided him for what would probably be the first and only time. With that, he turned back in the direction he had been walking towards to begin with, but only took a few more steps before suddenly changing his mind and apparating. Within mere moments, he was in a familiar space, staring down Hogwarts Express for the first time in years with a sort of odd feeling left with him after the conclusion of his conversation with that strange witch and, as his eyes focused on the train, mild dread.

If he was to be completely honest, not all of his memories on the train were from situations that he had thought of poorly at the time. No, not all of his experiences on the train had been traumatic or during absolutely miserable periods of his life. He had the memories of his first time on the train, sitting with Crabbe and Goyle as incoming first year students, knowing that while most first year students had no one, he already had two classmates who would follow him wherever he went. Perhaps it hadn't been the best friendship, even at the time he had known that, but it wasn't miserable. Lonely perhaps, but his ego was able to more than compensate for that at the time. Again, he had his memories with Pansy, with her so proudly at his side and doting on him in a way he had so thoroughly enjoyed at the time, even if now the thought of her caused him more irritation than it ever had fondness, even at the very best of times during their teenage relationship of sorts. After all, there was a reason the two of them hadn't spoken in years now. Even in the darkest of places, during the most miserable of times, he had the distinctly satisfying memory of realizing everybody's precious Harry Potter had sneaked in to hide among the luggage on the way to Hogwarts at the start of their sixth year. Admittedly, that time was a plainly miserable time for Draco to even try to think about so he usually didn't, choosing instead to lock those memories and feelings away rather than actually work through them, but one of the only bright spots in the whole thing was the memory of peeling that miserable invisibility cloak off of Potter's immobile body and then kicking at him. It wasn't the only time that Draco had taken up the opportunity to take out his irritations with everybody's favorite Gryffindor of the time, often getting fairly physical when the Gryffindor and Slytherin teams were playing against each other. Of course nobody expected gentleness in the game, it was quidditch, after all. Quidditch was a brutal game, or at least it should be if the people who were playing were motivated enough. Still, even given that high bar, Draco had still took it a bit further than he really needed to. There wasn't a chance in hell he'd ever regret that, of course- Harry Potter had always been something of a curse on all that Draco had ever wanted and those that he loved, and given that they were both seekers for their respective houses, Draco had taken full advantage.

While Draco was quite talented at compartmentalizing and wasn't particularly nostalgic by any means, he didn't even attempt to pull himself from his thoughts as he boarded the familiar train. After all, the memories of kicking at Harry while he was immobile were pleasant ones, despite the time that it had occurred. The memories of the act itself, and the satisfaction he felt as had exited the train that first night of his sixth year, were immeasurably better than the reality of him moving through the train cars once again. As long as he could ignore the circumstances that had led to those feelings, which he so easily did, it was a sort of easily satisfying way of ignoring all of the children aboard the train. That was, of course, until he was abruptly pulled from his thoughts by the sound of an unfamiliar voice.

"Excuse me," he heard a meek voice, one that was so clearly a young male, with an accent that put him as a young boy from Essex or the surrounding area to Draco's ears. In the train full of magical students, it was just one voice among many, a simple one to ignore and allow to fade in to the crowd of murmurs that took place between new and reuniting friends gossiping and chatting among themselves. He had no way of knowing who it was directed towards- no reason to expect himself, and even more so not a single reason to care enough to ever attempt to find the source of the voice. Well, at least, he didn't- not for a moment at least, before the pesky meek voice spoke up once more. "Are you Lucius Malfoy?" Well, there it was. Damn. Draco couldn't help but feel annoyance at the interruption, even as his blue eyes scanned the unfamiliar young faces in the booths surrounding the path he had been walking through. It took a moment before he spotted the source of the noise. Well, Draco hadn't been wrong. He spotted a boy nearby, dark brown eyes locked on him intently before looking away as a shoulder knocked in to him.

"What are you on about?" The boy beside him asked around the food that he had been chewing on.

The group was young, but not quite as young as Draco had assumed before spotting them. They had to at least have been second years, if not third years, judging both by the bright yellow scarf with thick black stripes that two of the three boys seated together had draped over their shoulders and the sight of the heavy and seemingly severe acne that marked the features of the other.

When the first boy Draco had noticed motioned in his direction, the boy beside him widened his eyes and swallowed hard, a sudden nervousness and disbelief flashing across his expressive features. "That isn't Lucius, Liam," he was quick to chastise his friend before speaking a bit louder to address the man in the aisle, as if he hadn't been able to hear every word the boys uttered. "Sorry sir, my friend didn't mean anything by it. You just looked familiar is all."

There it was- the fear. It wasn't the kind of fear that only came from prestige, or the kind of fear that a younger person might have in front of a slightly older person as they tried to prove their respect or their maturity. No, it was a different and more carnal fear, a type of fear that Draco had come to know of well within the last five years. More so than he ever even had being a prefect or before that, even, as the confident son of Lucius Malfoy, who had so often gotten his way among his peers. No, this was fear that didn't come directly from his last name. It wasn't fear of him just because he was a member of the powerful Malfoy family, or because of what his father was known to have done. Whether he liked it or not, no matter how miserable the process had been for him at the time and in subsequent years, he had earned this fear. His reputation alone did it, though he could only imagine that the annoyance he was feeling with the students, the annoyance that he made absolutely no effort whatsoever in concealing, certainly wasn't helping. Draco didn't dwell too long on that either, he couldn't bring himself to, though he resisted the sarcastic and insulting urges that he always felt when he was faced with people or situations who were as irritating as the Hufflepuff students were to him. Did they honestly think he looked old enough to be his father, or were they just that dull? Saying nothing, Draco moved forward past their compartment towards the middle of the train, finding an empty compartment one car after theirs and settling in it. No sooner than he had, sliding in to the seat and putting his case beside him, another voice called to Draco.

"Would you like anything off the trolley, dear?" At the question, Draco's blue eyes moved from the woman to the cart that she had been pushing. It was just as he remembered it being- exactly how he remembered it being. The cart was neatly organized as it always was, really, but especially now in a way that it could only truly remain so early in the day before the train so much as left on it's journey to Hogwarts. The cart was carrying all of the same wizarding snacks that Draco had seen on every train ride back and forth to Hogwarts during his years as a student and countless other times throughout his life and in visits to Diagon Alley. Of course, all of the options were aimed at the young students who would make up the vast majority of the occupants on the train as well as all others who had a significant sweet tooth or love for quirky magical candies or indulgences. Yes, the organized cart held all of the frequent favorites- Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans, Drooble's Best Blowing Gum, chocolate frogs, pumpkin pasties, couldron cakes, Liquorice Wands, Pepper Imps, chocolate balls full of strawberry mousse and clotted cream, Sugar Quills, tooth flossing string mints, Jelly Slugs, nougat, coconut ice, toffees, Fizzing Whizbees, ice mice, peppermint toads, blood flavoured lollipops, Cockroach Cluster, fudge flies, and Acid Pops. While he couldn't see all of the items, Draco knew that they were there all the same.

His eyes quickly scanning the cart once more, he soon shifted his attention away from the woman and the mix of sweet and foul treats that she was selling. "I'm fine," he dismissed with a casual wave of the hand. He'd never been much of a fan of most of what was being offered, anyway. Of course, the fact that he hadn't acquired a taste for the majority of the treats didn't mean he wasn't completely familiar with them. Most witches and wizards who were brought up in the magical community were, of course, and he had even further experience with them even if they weren't something he had regularly indulged in. While he hadn't, he had spent more than just a fair amount of time with Crabbe and Goyle in his youth. Those two would put just about anything that they could possibly find that looked even somewhat appetizing in to their mouths. Goyle in particular seemed to have a bit of a fascination with Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans, always bringing boxes from home with him to Hogwarts and restocking when the three of them -or perhaps four or five, if Pansy or Blaise would tag along- would go to Hogsmeade.

When he was well stocked, Draco could remember seemingly countless nights of lounging against a sofa in the Slytherin common room, watching with disgust as Goyle would routinely goad Crabbe in to joining him in the Bertie Bott's Beans game. Crabbe preferred the cinnamon flavor, while Goyle preferred the blueberry flavored beans. While there was nothing wrong with those beans, Draco supposed, it was impossible to anticipate which flavor any given bean might be. Just as often as they would taste an attractive flavor, they would get stuck with one flavored as an earthworm, rotten egg, soap, vomit, dirt, or earwax. Every foul tasting bean would lead to a reaction ranging from a grimace to a boy gagging over the floor in the cold dormitories in the dungeon. Yet, infallibly, the two of them would go reaching in for more. One after another, they would take turns taking their chances, taking pleasure in seeing the other gagging over whatever disgusting flavor their friend would be stuck with, likely enjoying both the spectacle of it and knowing that it was one less foul tasting bean left in the box, increasing their odds of a more favorable flavor. It really was increasing their odds, too, given that Draco couldn't remember a single time that they didn't finish at least one box once they had started. Of course, that was a ritual for just the two of them. Draco never once joined in, watching instead with disgust at how their gluttony and perceived stupidity would drive them to taste such disgusting things. Such a game wasn't one that Draco had ever experienced even the slightest bit of temptation in joining in on. No, he would stick with his apples, and thought them idiots for not doing the same.

Oddly enough, it was the sound of the cart beginning to pull away, the witch behind it beginning to move in to the next compartment to try to sell her sweets to the children on the train, that brought Draco out of his thoughts if only for a moment. Hands settled against the expensive fabrics of his black suit before he situated himself further from the door that led to the compartment he was sitting in. Pressing his elbow against the metal that lined the interior wall of the train, Draco's eyes moved to the window, watching out it and the walls of the platform. He had sat on the opposite side of the train than that that young wizards and witches entered the train from, so he didn't have to see the children or their parents. No- for a moment, if only for a moment before this academic year was set to begin, he was alone once again.

xxxxxImage
Image
Image
xxImage
While her sister had assured her that she'd be done getting her robes by the time that Rosie was finished purchasing a wand, there was still no sign of the older girl - though, to be fair, with the crowds of witches and wizards making their way through Diagon Alley it would have been impossible to have a clear line of sight between Ollivander's and Madam Malkin's Robes For All Occasions to see if Ezra was on her way towards the wand shop and would be entering at an any moment. Despite her sister's assurances and no way of knowing if Ezra was on her way or not yet, however, Rosie had a pretty good suspicion that she wasn't, and couldn't bring herself to be entirely surprised. Ezra was responsible, but getting things done quickly hardly seemed to be among her strengths. Well, at least when it came to shopping- or when it came to getting ready to go anywhere, for that matter. Rosie bit down on her bottom lip at the thought, her eyes sweeping the witches and wizards she could see once more before turning, her back facing the wall as she decided again that yes, she would wait in Ollivander's. At least, for as long as Percy was still in there. Her eyes flickered to the boy at the counter once more at the thought, a small amused smirk pulling at her lips once more.

Watching him as he interacted with Mr. Ollivander, she was given a moment to reflect on what he had said when he had been rambling once more. He lived in New York. Now, admittedly, Rosie knew very little of anything in the United States with the exception of Grindelwald's time there. However, while she likely wouldn't know of the mere existence of most major cities in the country, she had heard of New York being mentioned ever so briefly in the books she had read about mentioning Grindelwald. She had also heard, however, heard of New York through a far more unlikely source. In her father's London home, he kept an old record player- one that had been in the family since his parent's muggle parents had bought one out of curiosity so many years ago. It was probably one of the only pieces of muggle technology between the family's homes, from the early twentieth century, and not often used. That being said, there were only two records she had ever heard her father play on that record player, though they were certainly purchased decades after her grandparents bought the record player. The first was Solomon Burke's 1964 Rock 'n Soul album, with the other being Frank Sinatra's 1963 Sinatra's Sinatra album. They were two American singers, and in the latter's songs, mentions of New York were hardly unheard of. Part of her wondered, as she watched him what New York must have been like, and how different it was from London or even Whitby- it had to be more like London than Whitby, right? Her mind lingered on the thought for a moment before moving to the fact that his father was a muggle and that his family did things similarly to muggles. What even was that like?

It must have been awful, Rosie quickly decided, though it was admittedly an assumption she made due to growing up hearing her family's views on Muggles. Another sentiment that she had chosen not to reply to was that on the quirky twig not liking being called a twig, but she was more amused by anything at that. She was too petty not to be amused by it not liking the name, especially after its rudeness. Then, lastly and yet one that hadn't left her mind, was that Percy had described her name as being pretty. She had heard it being called that before, of course, but usually by family or adults. She didn't exactly know many people her age, and not many people interested her. Percy had already fascinated her, and she liked that he liked her name. She liked it a lot. Her eyes adverted from the boy at the counter when she saw him turn away from the counter, eyes darting back to her case for a reason she couldn't quite understand. Still, Rosie looked back up when she heard Percy's voice again. The questions and the sight of his smile brought a small smile to her own lips. "What an odd question, wouldn't you say?" She asked. "We're both leaving for Hogwarts, of course you'll see me again," the girl tried to reason, though she couldn't help but feel a bit excited by his last question. Rosie was accustomed and not exactly opposed to being alone, but she knew she wouldn't mind sitting with Percy for the train ride. No, not at all- even if it was just him babbling on as he had in the shop, asking so many strange questions for the hours of the trip in that strange accent of his, she suspected that she would enjoy it. He was amusing, and fascinating, and she liked the idea instantly.

"That sounds lovely," she agreed with a nod, a small smile refusing to leave her lips. "I should find my sister first, but I imagine we'll be heading to the platform shortly. I'll see you on the train?" She asked, pausing for another moment before tightening her pale fingers on the handle of the case she was carrying and reflecting on where her said said she usually sat. It was towards the back, right? "I'll be towards the front." With that, she gave one last look to the boy before exiting the shop. She didn't look back, though a smile remained on her face for the time being. She made her way past the odd woman who was still holding an odd looking beast as well as an owl on her way out before moving more in to the crowds, though not before she caught a glimpse of a familiar man walking in the opposite direction. It was Draco Malfoy, she recognized immediately, her eyes going wide as she watched him nearly disappear in to the crowd before apparating. It wasn't the first time she had ever seen the former death eater, and it certainly wouldn't be the last, but she hadn't expected to see him then or see him apparate. Rosie stared at the space she had last seen him for a moment before she felt someone brush past her, the feeling bringing her back to reality and prompting her to start moving again, making her way through the crowds of witches and wizards until finally making her way to her destination.

It seemed immediate. As soon as she made her way past the doors and in to Madam Malkin's Robes For All Occasions, a far more open shop than the last that the young witch was more familiar with due to robe fittings during her last visit to Diagon Alley with her mother, her eyes located the form of her sister. It wasn't terribly difficult, really, under any occasion, even if the store had been more riddled with more divisions or obstacles than it actually was. Ezra just stood out, Rosie had always thoughts, and she certainly wasn't the only one. Ezra had always been a beautiful girl; well, with the exception of a bit of an awkward period that Rosie wasn't old enough to remember and only knew of thanks to Leland's teasing. With that exception, however, for as long as Rosie could remember Ezra was seemingly always admired for her beauty. She was attractive, always well put together much like their mother, and tall- taller than their mother in heels, and when Ezra was wearing them, about as tall as their father or brother. Apparently such a trait was something that had always held true- tall, ever since childhood, quite unlike Rosie. While Ezra was quick to spot, however, Rosie was hardly in the mood for celebrating when she spotted her sister leaning against a display of high end black robes. Instead, her eyes quickly darted to the young man that Ezra was talking to- a familiar face if there ever was one. Rosie's eyes narrowed at the sight, moving around a display and allowing another customer to pass before finding herself unable to stop herself from commenting. "What is he doing here?" Rosie scrunched up her nose. The sound of the voice had the elder girl's laughter cease, eyes flying towards the direction of the sound. When she saw that it was her sister, she pressed her hand against the man's chest, gently pushing him a bit further away as the younger girl joined them.

The dark haired man, or older boy perhaps, was the first to respond to the girl. "Pleasure seeing you, too," the boy with a heavy Irish accent immediately tried to make light of the encounter, lifting his big hand to the top of her head, tussling it against her braided hair as one might a dog. Rosie's eyes only narrowed further at the action, his actions making it so it took all she had not to growl at him or try to use her newly purchased wand before she ever stepped foot in the castle of Hogwarts, the only thing that stopped her was knowing full that she unfortunately wouldn't know how to make it hurt yet.

Naturally, between the situation and the regrettable approach the man had already taken had Ezra immediately on damage control. "We ran in to each other, had a bit of a chat," she claimed. While it was true that the two Slytherin seventh years had just been talking when Rosie had spotted them, it did little to quell the eleven year old's displeasure. Rosie had know of Byrne O'Sullivan for over a year, and while she didn't know the extent of his history with her sister, she was damned sure that she never wanted to find out. Seeing them snogging twice had been more than enough for Rosie, who's dislike for the man went far beyond his past relationship with her sister, yet was still heavily routed in it. "Did you get your wand?"

Rosie, naturally, was more inclined to ignore Ezra's question and respond to the topic that was at the forefront of her mind now. Besides, as far as Rosie was concerned, if Ezra couldn't see the wand that she still held on to, then that was her own problem and not Rosie's. "Snogging more likely," Rosie quickly shot back, ignoring entirely how embarrassing the conversation must have been for the two teenagers. Or, perhaps, might have been- if Ezra had been willing to get embarrassed over such things. "I thought we were done with him, now that you're to be married."

"We're just friends, Rosie," Ezra attempted to dismiss the claim.

"Friends who fancy snogging?" Rosie retorted, clutching harder on to her wand in one hand so that she wouldn't drop it as she crossed her other arm across her chest. "You and I have very different ideas of the word 'friend'."

"Probably because mine are existent and you haven't any." Ezra scoffed before hesitating, the male in the group taking the opportunity to excuse himself to go to the counter and pay for the robes that he had ordered. Watching him leave, Ezra's voice softened. "Promise to behave," Ezra tried to bargain.

"I'll give it my best effort," Rosie attempted to get out of the conversation without being too committal, given that she had absolutely no intention of behaving if behaving meant keeping her mouth shut.

"Make it better than your best," Ezra was quick to counter.

The quick comeback made the younger girl pause, brows pushing together as she looked up at her sister. "Sorry?"

"I know precisely how sorry your best attempt at civility is," Ezra claimed, the words causing Rosie's eyes to roll. Of course, the claim probably had some merit. Yet, Rosie dismissed it, instead choosing to focus on the idea that she had always managed to be quite polite at formal functions her family had attended due to her father's job. Her chosen demeanor under certain circumstances had absolutely nothing to do with her ability to be civil when it was necessary. Still, Ezra continued to punctuate the point. "You'll do better than you best," she informed her younger sister. "He's a prefect, you know. It wouldn't hurt you to get in well with the Slytherin prefects. It's just us, remember? Us Slytherins only have each other, then we're just stuck to deal with the rest of the sorry lot."

The words made Rosie pause. Of course, Rosie had always known that the House of Slytherin was seen as being a bit different than the rest of the Hogwarts houses, especially after Voldemort. Naturally, however, she had always heard the stories through the lense of her family, all of whom had been members of the Slytherin house at one time or another. Most of the worst stories were always typically about Gryffindors, about how the houses just naturally clashed due to old rivalries as well as just the qualities that members of the two houses were sorted by and how they naturally had a tendency to go together poorly and cause arguments and disagreements that could so easily turn in to hatred. They were just different. Her parents had also said that the other houses had a tendency to be a bit more progressive in their thinking by their very nature. They didn't tend to embrace tradition like Slytherin's did, like the Adelinde's did. They had prepared her for the tension that might exist between the house that she would presumably be sorted in to and the other Hogwarts houses, that there was a sort of fraternity among Slytherins as they mostly just stuck together, rarely befriending those from outside houses. Of course, Ezra was the youngest, and the only one in the family who had attended Hogwarts after the second wizarding war. Her dislike for the other houses always seemed a bit stronger than even the other members of their immediate family, a trait that made Rosie sometimes wonder what exactly it was like in Hogwarts, what it was like to be a Slytherin.

It didn't infringe on her excitement to go and be sorted in to the house that seemed like such a fit for her already, but even now, just hours away from Rosie's first night at Hogwarts, she couldn't help but feel like Ezra's words were yet another attempted warning at what might be ahead. Rosie brushed it off as Ezra being dramatic in the moment and wanting Rosie to keep her mouth shut about Byrne and his obnoxious way of existing, but yet her draw toward the noble art of self preservation grounded her a bit after hearing Ezra's words. "Fine," she conceded after a moment, her mind flickering back to the boy she had just met in Ollivander's. Maybe he'd be sorted in to Slytherin, too, and she'd be able to hear the odd boy babble on and on about the strangest things as she already had and maybe they could become friends and she wouldn't have to deal with the likes of Byrne because she'd already have a friend to be strange with and ignore the other houses as her sister seemed to so adamantly encourage. Maybe it was wishful thinking, and maybe strange to already be thinking about someone she had just met, but as far as she knew, in that moment, it was a possibility. The thought brightened her mood a bit after the misfortune of agreeing to be nice to Byrne, and she was quickly about to shift her mind to a more satisfying thought once more. "Did you and your friend see him, then?" Rosie asked, peeking up through her lashes at her older sister.

The older girl seemed to be satisfied for a moment, an obvious look that the eighteen year old wore often and well, before the question made her pause and raise a skeptic brow. "See who?"

The confusion brought a small bit of satisfaction to Rosie, who was hardly able to hide it well, a smirk on her lips once more. "Draco Malfoy, obviously. I saw him outside Ollivander's. Curious, don't you think?" She asked, tilting her head as she watched Ezra's eyes widen ever so slightly at the news. Not as much as Rosie would have expected, but enough to satisfy her need to tease her sister. "I wonder if he saw you and your friend chatting," she mused, eyeing her sister.

Ezra's paused for a moment before answering."I imagine we'll be seeing plenty of him. Draco's to be at Hogwarts this year,"

A death eater at Hogwarts? Someone who had used the dark arts-- her future brother in law? The excitement rose within her for a moment before a thought weighed her down a bit, her brows furrowing. "Isn't he a bit old to be at Hogwarts?"

"He'll be there in a more official capacity. Aiding in Defense Against the Dark Arts, I believe."

Rosie's eyes widened a bit."Do you think I-"

The older girl let out an exasperated sigh, clearly holding on to little doubt that she knew exactly which direction this conversation was heading. "I wouldn't know, Rosie. We've hardly the chance to discuss whether your schedules overlap." She paused. "Come on," she said after a moment, motioning for Rosie to follow her forward towards the counter to check out. "You don't need anything?"

Rosie was quick to shake her head at the question. "No, I already have all of my robes and..." she began, but was quick to trail off as a thought came to mind as her eyes roamed over the counter, locking in on the sight of a display behind the cashier. "Oh! Chocolate frogs!" If she was to be sitting with Percy on the train to Hogwarts, perhaps she could introduce him to chocolate frogs. Would they be available for purchase on the train? She couldn't be sure, she had obviously never been on Hogwarts Express before, so that within itself was going to be an entirely new experience for her. Either way, she figured, what the train would or wouldn't have available wouldn't matter much if Rosie came prepared.

The eleven year old could practically feel Ezra's eyes on her, so Rosie looked up from the display to her sister. "You want a chocolate frog?"

"Well, no, not a chocolate frog." Rosie countered as if it was the most obvious thing in the world, though soon after speaking understood where the confusion must have been.

Of course, the answer did little to solve that confusion. "How many bloody frogs do you want?"

Naturally, Rosie's first reaction was to answer that she wanted two, but she quickly dismissed that thought as sounding a bit too suspect. Besides, what if one escaped? So maybe three. Or she could just round up. The small brunette quickly decided on which route she wanted to go, though the hesitation hardly left her voice by the time she gave her answer. "...Five?"

"Five? What, are you starting a collection to bring with you to school?"

The idea of telling Ezra the truth didn't even occur to her young mind. No, it wasn't something she needed to know, and before Rosie could even contemplate anything, a more natural response escaped her lips. "No, I wanted to play monster and see how many frogs I could possibly get in my mouth at once, clawing for their escape, only to be met by mighty jaws," Rosie gave a playful snap of her mouth to emphasize her morbid claim.

A small laugh left the other girl's lips. "You are completely mental, you know that?"

Rosie gave a small shrug, a smirk on her lips once more. "Mum says I give it a go, put in the effort."

Before anything else could be said, a familiar voice suddenly joined in to the conversation once again. "Hello gorgeous," he addressed Ezra, and Rosie scrunched her nose at the words before raising a skeptical brow at Byrne before glancing at her sister. Right, just friends. "Are we ready?" he asked, looking between the two girls.

Ezra eyed Byrne, "Just a moment." Rosie watched the eighteen year old turn to the cashier."Hello," she gave a polite smile. "I need to ring out an order, it should be under 'Adelinde','' she told the cashier, before glancing to her younger sister and looking back, "as well as five chocolate frogs, thank you." As the employee went in to the back to get the order, Ezra eyed her sister's wand."That's a beautiful wand. What is it?"

"Blackthorn wood and a dragon heartstring. The wood even looks like it has thorns, see?" Rosie held up her wand for her sister to see, unintentionally pointing it directly at her before her sister gently motioned for her to lower it.

"I don't know anyone with a blackthorn wand," the older girl mused, "it does have thorns." She paused. "How fitting. Now, why don't you put it in your bag? You'll have plenty of time with it once we get on the train. Be careful, now."

Rosie nodded, though not entirely fond of the idea, and knelt down to set her case on to the floor. Unlocking it, her brows furrowed when she spotted the outline of some objects in the dark case that she didn't recognize, it taking her a moment to remember that her father had said he put a few gifts in the case. The thought put a smile back on Rosie's face, the young witch carefully packing the wand in to the case with care, and then adding in the chocolate frogs when Ezra's transaction was finished. Once everything was inside, she closed the case back up, and the three magical youth left the store together. They didn't remain in Diagon Alley for long after that, only long enough to meet up with two of their friends. Rosie walked with the four Slytherin teenagers to the train station, the others in the group thoroughly familiar with the quickest path to get there in a non-magical way. It was only the second time that Rosie could remember ever having been to the train station, the first being once when she was younger while her mother sent Ezra off for another year at the magical school. It had been so long and she had been so young then that everything seemed new now, like she had never once been there before. There were so many muggles there, more than Rosie could ever remember seeing in one place. It was so odd, Rosie decided as she watched the muggles that the group walked passed, and as odd as it might have been to some, running through the wall after Byrne at Platform 9 3/4 seemed far more familiar to her than the strangeness of so many muggles. Once they were on the platform, Rosie's excitement only escalated. Her eyes locked on the Hogwarts Express, she was pulled out of her thoughts once more by her sister's voice, asking if she'd like to sit with her and her friends. "No, I'm fine," Rosie was quick to dismiss. Even if she hadn't met Percy already, it still would have been a solid 'no'. That being said, it was even further solidified by the meeting. "I'll see you when we get off?"

The words put a smile on Ezra's features. "Not quite. They do something special for the first years," she assured, the words thoroughly confusing Rosie. "I'll see you again at the sorting ceremony, though. You'll be brilliant. Now, if need anything, I'll be in the fifth coach."

Rosie gave a nod, but while Ezra moved to walk away, Rosie wasn't in the clear quite yet. She felt Byrne's heavy hand on top of her head again, tussling her braided locks once more. "It's not so bad, mavourneen," the Irish boy teased before walking away with the group of teenagers. Rosie glared after him for a moment before making her way towards another door, one more towards the front of the train. Climbing in to the train in the second coach, Rosie took a moment to look around for Percy in the second coach before the area of the first coach that wasn't marked off for students other than prefects. When she couldn't find him, Rosie returned to the second coach, finding an empty compartment in the rapidly filling train and sliding on to one of the two benches. Rosie took the opportunity to lean back, pulling her case on to her lap as she waited.
Last edited by Iris on Wed Jan 30, 2019 9:30 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] 004

Post by 76heart » Mon Dec 24, 2018 3:02 am

Image
━━━━━━━━━not a monster━━
Image
━she couldn't love━━━━━━
xxxWhen people heard her name, they usually gave no reaction, or at least, not one different to what they gave everyone else. No one but the people who came to her family's shop, or knew one of the member's of her family personally would know who the Deornes were, and she supposed that she was lucky her mother had taken her father's name when they married, for the name of Aubelle would incite something very different amongst the world of wizards. Once her family had held a level of prestige and importance, not at all unlike the Malfoys, but for completely different reasons than the ones theirs had been found on, but now her family was seen as disgraced. Their downfall started when they moved to America, to the new world, so long ago, when they had caught the smallest of whispers on the wind about a magnificent magical school across the sea called Ilvermorny. Part of the allure to such a place had in fact been that Ilvermorny was partially founded by a muggle, James Steward, a man who had fallen in love with a pureblooded descendent of Salazar Slytherin from across the sea, that had fled to the new world to escape her villainous aunt, Isolt Sayre. The two had found each other, deep in the woods, after Isolt had returned to where she and the Pukwudgie William had found a witch and wizard murdered by the same Hidebehind that she had saved William from, and their two sons, whom James and Isolt soon called their own. She found him burying the boys' parents, and they had been together from that moment until the end of their days. It was a beautiful story really, one of her favorite tales of love, and she liked William too, naturally. No one really knew if the Pukwudgie who called himself William at Ilvermorny was that William, but Leona had befriended the grouchy, rather cantankerous creature, and she had her suspicions that they were the same. He would let no other clean the statue of Isolt, and she could see the reverence, and fondness for her, in his eyes. Pukwudgies most certainly weren't what drew her family to the Americas though, although it was certainly a very large bonus for her. It really was the fact their school was partially founded by a muggle, and the way magical beings across the ocean didn't seem to care as strongly for blood purity as those in Europe did. They felt like they could help more people there, too, and that they could do more, so they went, and their downfall began not long after. It was the second time her family had moved from one country to the next, but it had been the first time that her family had traveled to, and moved to, an entirely different continent. Her family was originally from France, but they had been attending Hogwarts long before Beauxbatons even existed. Her family eventually made the move to the land it was in, a few generations after they began attending, and started to make a name for themselves there. They got involved in the Ministry of Magic, or whatever was in place back then, and while Leona didn't know much about that time, as the history of it had been clouded over the years of it being past down and had been muddied with the fading memories of age, she knew that her family had been quite well off at the time, and a name to be known. They had importance, their name was known, and they had some power. The family had a strong presence at Hogwarts, and everyone who was married to, or born to the name Aubelle, save for aunts and uncles of ages past, had been sorted into Gryffindor. They were known for their history with the house, and for their odd ways of seeming to always be sorted into it, not at all unlike a certain young Malfoy's family with Slytherin. As far as it as able to be traced back they were all Gryffindor, through and through, and even now, they still were really. Thunderbird favored adventures, people who wanted to explore, to see, a house of soul, and what her family had been sorted into ever since their move to America. Truly, it wasn't at all that different from the Hogwarts house of courage and bravery, and save for her grandmother, a Pukwudgie, and herself, a Horned Serpent, her family had stuck to their core values, their core roots, and had remained in the same vein that their family always had. Along with all of that though, the Aubelles were pureblooded as well, which seemed to be an important thing at the time, and even now, much to her personal distaste. While her family didn't particularly care about blood purity, they had still made an effort to maintain their own, and they had succeeded, at least, until her parents. She and Percy were the half-bloods of a ruined line, and their mother was the pureblood who had fallen in love with and married a muggle. Few knew of that though, and those who did didn't exactly seem to care. Blood purity wasn't as important in her home as it was here, and really, with how much her family interacted with no-maj, it was a wonder such a thing hadn't happened sooner. Her family had always been known to love, and be rather fond of muggles, no-maj, and non-magique, whatever one wanted to call someone without any magic or history of it running through their blood. They had always carried a fondness for them, and the world of witches and wizards knew that very well. Her family gave to muggle charities, and helped where they could when they couldn't help with coin, and a few even made it into high positions in their non magical world. Their love for muggles and common friendship with them was a main thing they were known for to begin with, but it became even more noticeably present when they opened their shop, and found their home in America, and that was where so many would say it went wrong.

xxxIn a way, things had already started to go down hill when the Statute of Secrecy was put into place. Her family had protested it from it's first moment as a mere thought, vehemently opposing it when they could without the risk of a horrible outcome, but despite that, and the efforts of the other families and individuals who had a opposed it, it still went through, and the stupid thing was still around today. She understood it's purpose, to protect the wizarding world from a kind of human that had not exactly been known to take kindly to strange, unknown, and scary things, and to keep them from using them and all of that. She got it, she understood it, she did, but that didn't change that Leona hated it, especially when it came to children. There was no way in hell she was going to obligate a child that had caught a glimpse of her doing magic, or her creatures. There was no way she was going to take such a wondrous thing away from them, something they would never forget, a moment they would hold onto and treasure, as proof that magic did exist, as a hope, a light. Children's books, and so many things, were filled with such magic and wonder, how could she take away a magic from them that was real? If they said anything, who would believe them anyway? It would be taken as make believe and play, or childish fantasies they perceived as real, not truth, or fact, and even then, she knew that a lot of times, they were happy to keep and guard important secrets. Not many people seemed to put trust in children in that way, and from the few times it had happened with her, she had found that magic and her creatures were a secret they were most eager to keep. It gave them the biggest smiles, as did seeing it to begin with, and she refused to be the one to take that away. Some heartless asshole could do that if it was really needed, not her, she wasn't doing it. That particular statute, no matter how much she wished it gone or at least amended, wasn't what had gotten her family into trouble, and dragged their name through the mud as they became want many would say was disgraced. That had been the doing of Rappaport's Law, enacted by the MACUSA in 1790, by the fifteenth president, Emily Rappaport; an incredibly backwards law that all together separated and segregated the no-maj from the witches and wizards, and allowed no more than the bare minimum daily, or necessary interactions. Thank god that horrid thing had been appealed, though she wished it had come about far sooner, so her family wouldn't have had to endure what they did. It came about after a horrible breach of the Statute of Secrecy, one of the very instances that it was created to prevent, which again, her family had opposed. They had been with the MACUSA then, although most left after it came to pass. It had caused a truly, horrifying thing, but that was no reason to go to such a terrible extreme. Blocking out all possibilities of something likely good through barring interactions between them altogether was no way to solve things. It had people hiding, being fearful, afraid, and perhaps, if it hadn't been around during Grindelwald's reign, things wouldn't have been as horrible as they ended, and some people on his side, would never have been swayed by the temptations he offered, by the whispers of a world where witches and wizards could love whomever they pleased, magical or not. This wasn't some preschool filled with toddlers, punishing everyone with the worst extreme, because someone did a bad thing and made a mistake that ended far worse than anyone could have ever imagined, wasn't the way to go. It was like someone calling another a name, and then saying no one could talk to anyone again. It was stupid, and too much, and just all around terrible. She hated it, and she was so glad that she didn't have to follow such a ridiculous thing. Her family had never really followed it though, in truth, and that was what had gotten them into so much trouble. The only reason they likely hadn't been thrown somewhere awful for all the times they broke it and very openly protested it was that they still had connections to people rather high up in the MACUSA, and even that had barely been enough. Everything had just seemed to go wrong for her family after that dumb law was put in place, and she hated the damage it had caused to her kin, to her blood. Her grandmother had lost her sister because of it, and so many in innocent people had been hurt because of it. It had never been worth it, never, and now if was just a mess she did not enjoy recounting, and didn't want to at all, while she was in the presence of someone like Draco. She didn't want to tarnish her moments with him, or bring herself down with bad memories and a past that was done with and over, when she so wanted to smile with him near. Even so, regardless of all that, the name Aubelle was one she wore with pride. Leona was hesitant to share it with Draco though, due to the Malfoy family views and values she had heard so much about. She doubted that after all he had been through and seen, that Draco would still carry and share those same sentiments, and he just didn't seem to be the type, now at least, but there was still the fear that if she mentioned it, he would go, and she didn't want him to leave so soon. If he knew what her family had done, and of their fall from grace, she so worried that he would go, and she didn't want that at all. She wanted to talk with him, just a little more, and if she ever saw him again, she could tell him then.

xxxAt the sound of his response, she gave a smile, and an agreeing nod, glad that she seemed to have gotten the facts correct in that. "Yes, definitely not in a traditional sense." Leona agreed. If the toe houses could be described as close with one another at all, it was probably more in a way of keeping one's friends close and their enemies closer sort of way, or that they knew of each other, obviously, and just despised each other. She didn't know why the two houses didn't seem to quite get along, but it wasn't something she was going to question, and she didn't quite understand either house to begin with anyway, past the common knowledge and what most knew. She'd ask Draco, but it was probably a ridiculous question, and she didn't want to bother him with things she could easily find the answers to in a book, or during the time she was about to spend at the home of the two houses. If she truly wanted to figure out why they disliked each other, she could do that then, but not here, not now, when she was so enraptured by Draco, and didn't want him to go and leave because she had asked a particularly dumb, boring, and obvious question that he wouldn't want to answer. Leona was relieved that he agreed with her words though, and that he hadn't left yet and the knowledge she had just shared hadn't scared him away. Of course, there was a chance he didn't at all believe her, and that he thought she was just crazy, which she knew could be very likely, as she knew she definitely looked it, especially after talking to an invisible creature resembling and ape and wittering on as she had. She really did hope that wasn't what he thought though, she really did want to see him again if she ever got the chance, and if he thought she was an absolute nutcase, it was incredibly unlikely that he'd give her that chance, or allow her even remotely near. She had been called crazy before, but she really didn't want to hear it from him.

xxxLeona gave a nod at his next words, the words he used to respond in kind to her own, and even though his response felt like a natural one, and nearing dismissive, she hoped that he meant it, that some part of him, had found their encounter pleasurable. She knew it was too much to ask or hope that she would see him again, yet she still wished she could, and that perhaps there would be a promise of them meeting again at best, and a promise that they never would cross paths again if he had a say in it at worst. It appeared that some small piece of him at least had enjoyed talking with her, or something, though, as instead of leaving like he had prepared to, and like she thought he would, he instead stayed, and they had some more time to talk. Leona truly couldn't hide how happy she felt that he wasn't going just yet, and honestly, it was probably far more than she should have had in this situation, and definitely more than the normal. She didn't care though; he was staying a little longer, and she would get to talk with him some more, for as long as it took her to answer his question at the very least, and she was more than a little pleased about that. Their truly was just something about him, something she couldn't define, that drew her to him and left her wanting to know more about him, more about who he was, and not from the rumors and whispers she had heard that had not come from his lips. He had not been cast a fair hand of cards in his life, and horrible things had happened, and he had been caught up in them, and helped, and people had not exactly been kind in what she had heard. She wanted to know him before she believed an ounce of what they said aside from the facts she already knew to be true, and even then, she wanted to hear it from his side, not an outsiders, not anyone else's, his. Had anyone ever even asked him what he had gone through, what it had been like? He didn't look to be this horrible being, this evil death eater with a blackened, rotting heart. While admittedly he was a bit intimidating, he didn't strike her as scary, or fear inspiring. He struck her as someone who had been through a lot, who had gone through unimaginable trials, and was unjustly painted as someone who had done nothing but wrong. He was special, and like no one she had ever met before; unique. He was handsome too of course, very handsome, but that was besides the point. He wasn't what people said he was, that she knew, even if the truth of it was hidden beneath a surface she would never reach. Maybe, just maybe, with him staying, she'd have the tiniest of chances to glimpse who he really was, who the true Draco was, but she knew that wouldn't happen without getting to know him a lot more. He was closed off, blocking her, and everyone else out, and she knew she would not get the privilege of reaching that when they had only just met. He was likely a person who had never been told that it was okay to feel, and let it out, no matter what it was, and people like that didn't give away their secrets and hidden pieces so easily. It took more than a simple first meeting to learn who they were. Still, despite all of that, it was hard to let go of the happiness she felt when he decided to stay, and ask her another thing, and she could not wipe the smile from her features. Admittedly, because of that, after probably sounding incredibly confusing and odd as she usually did with people who didn't also work in the field of animals by claiming that all understood, that happiness likely allowed her to get a bit carried away in her proving and demonstrating that animals could indeed understand, and now she had ended up with her cheeks bright red, and an immediate worry that she had done wrong in that. When he spoke, observing the trick her owl had just done, she knew that she had. She gave a slight grimace at his response. Yep. Definitely not necessary. She hoped that he would forgive her for that. "Right, sorry. That probably wasn't necessary." Leona apologized softly, biting the right side of her lower lip. That had definitely been a blunder. Of course she had badly blundered while given a second chance to know him a little more. Of course she had. Of course she did. Darn it. Why wasn't she better at interacting with people, especially when it was most important to and the person she was talking with was so uniquely special and someone she truly wanted to know and see again? People had never been her favorite thing, and it was rare that she met someone she wanted to meet again, and enjoyed talking with so much. Draco was one of those special people whom she absolutely did want to see again, and messing up was not something she felt that she could afford, but of course, as usual, she already had, and now he probably thought she was a show-off, or even crazier, or something. Why did she have to be like this? Would Draco forgive her for that at all? Godric had done wonderfully, and she didn't regret that at all, but she just wished she had done something different. Maybe something with Dewitt would have been better? Maybe she could have had the Demiguise do a magic trick or something of the sort? No, muggle magic tricks would probably be offensive to a great wizard, or at least one who had grown up in a family that wasn't exactly fond of them as hers had been. Maybe she could have told Dewitt to shake his hand in French or something like that? Or talked about how Dewitt helped her out like an assistant would? No, definitely not, most certainly not, if he didn't already think she was crazy, that definitely would pose the thought to his mind. Gah, why did she have to be this way? She knew that it was pointless to dwell on it now that it was done, but she couldn't help it; she didn't want to repeat it again, and she so wanted her interactions to be perfect with the Malfoy wizard standing in front of her. She so did not want to mess this up, she really didn't.

xxxThankfully though, as she continued on- probably too much in her attempt to answer what he had asked-, after her blundering mishap, Draco seemed to continue listening as she went on, which she appreciated, truly, utterly, completely, and it was such a huge relief. She hadn't horrible ruined this all, and he was still staying, listening, with even a small smirk pulling at his lips as she spoke. She really liked the sight of that but- oh, right. He had played Quidditch in his Hogwarts years, he probably already knew about the Snidgets. She felt herself blush again, and her gray blue eyes linger on the smirk gracing his lips a moment too long. It really was a good look on him, and she liked it quite a lot, and she was glad that he had some sort of smile at her words, and that there was proof of it upon his attractive face, and even a little amusement leaking through even after she had committed a very small little blunder once again, which she quite liked as well. Leona more than liked the look of it all upon his features as she spoke, which was why her heart fell as they slipped away with the reality of her last few words, as the realization that she had likely kept him from something donned on her features. She felt even worse for bringing it up now, and mentioning that he too likely had some where to be, because he had lost something so nice because of it. Why couldn't she had waited until Percy came out? Why couldn't she have waited until then? If he truly had somewhere important and pressing to be, he wouldn't have chosen to stay and ask something, and she had a feeling he would have cut her off before she was done if he had felt he only had a short moment and she was taking too long. He probably did have somewhere important to be, something imperative that he do, but now she simply wished she had waited, and given the choice to return back to reality and the things they had to do and the responsibilities that came with it, to him. He'd know his schedule better than she ever could, and now, she had probably just lost a few moments more with him, and that only had her heart sinking deeper from her chest. He had already contemplated leaving once, why would he not take that chance again? He likely did have somewhere to be, and she had probably already made him late, so he was going to leave, and she'd never see him again, right? Had she messed this up all over again? He was going to say goodbye, wasn't he? Then she'd never see him again, and the goodbye would be too soon, and she probably messed it all up, and when he opens his mouth, it's going to be a goodbye, he's going to- oh. When he spoke again, though, she found herself very surprised, and quite rapidly pulled from her thoughts in what felt like a horribly quick woosh that left her eyes round and wide open. She blinked, somewhat startled, very surprised. It wasn't a goodbye? He wasn't saying goodbye just yet? He had asked her if her brother was getting his wand from Ollivander's, his stormy eyes eying the storefront they stood near before falling back to her, and her startled gaze. She had definitely not been expecting that, that he'd be willing to stay another moment. She was glad of it though, very glad; she'd take any moment that she got with him. Did that mean he that was he going to stay a little while longer, though? Was he going to talk with her some more? Had she been wrong, and he didn't have somewhere to be, and this was just some leisurely stroll or he was simply coming back from a trip to fetch something? Slowly, she gave a nod in answering, her gaze flickering to the golden curls of the shop's lettering against a backdrop of dark hues, before settling back on him, on Draco. Leona found a smile working away at her lips as he continued, giving a little possible explanation as to why it was taking so long, finishing with a small shrug before a pause. That was sweet of him, really sweet, to offer up a plausible explanation. Her smile widened. "Either that, or my brother is the one rattling on. Or my Bowtruckle has found a wand he likes and is refusing to give it up, though I doubt that's the case, he is much better behaved than that." Leona added, sending him another smile. It was then her smile faded though, as he spoke up again, thanking her for the demonstration with Godric, his eyes flicking briefly down to the owl. This was it, this was the goodbye. He hadn't been planning to stay at all after all. She wasn't even sure if he meant what he had just said, or if he had just been trying to be polite, or kind. Her features fell as he went on, and she felt her heart fall with it. There it was. The goodbye. He did have somewhere to be. It felt weird, and rather odd really, to hear him speak her surname as he said his goodbye, but she found herself liking it nonetheless, though she'd have been lying if she said she wouldn't prefer him to say her first. His voice had turned formal once again, but it seemed to soften with his five departing words. She really hoped that it had been a pleasure. "The pleasure was all mine, Draco." Leona replied, taking her turn to give her goodbye. Her voice was soft, and she wasn't even sure if he had heard. She liked the way his name sounded on her tongue, and the way it felt to speak it. With that, he turned back in the direction he had been heading, melding back within the crowd with only a few steps, before suddenly apparating away. She already missed his presence, their few moments. She was never going to see him again, was she? The type of moment they had shared was a kind meant to be ephemeral, transient, not long, or lasting, and theirs had already gone on far longer than it probably should have. That didn't stop her from wishing otherwise though, wishing that their meeting had been of an instance meant to last awhile, so she wouldn't have to say goodbye so soon, and so there would be a higher chance that she'd get to see this special man once again. She didn't want to lose him so soon, and she had, and now, it was incredibly unlikely that she'd ever see him again, and all she could do was wish that she'd have another chance to speak with him again, and soon, before he inevitably forgot her, and the words they had shared. Leona doubted that she'd ever be able to forget him though, there was something about him that was just too distinct, too wonderful, too special, for her to ever forget. Her gaze reminded on the spot where she had last seen him, and Dewitt slowly followed her gaze, holding onto her tighter, comfortingly, like the good friend he had always been. Hopefully some day their paths would cross again.

xxx"Leona?" Her eyes remained on the spot, her thoughts still lingering on him. She hadn't even noticed that a few moments had passed, and that her brother was at her side. Would she ever get to see Draco again? Would he even remember her if she did. "Leona!" Percy raised his voice so she would snap out of her thoughts and head, a slight whining tinge to his voice. She gave a jolt and then turned her head to look down at him, her expression apologetic, but forlorn. Dewitt turned to look at Percy, and Hollivander seemed to perk up at the sight. "Oh, sorry Percy." Leona spoke softly, her words only half there. She looked away again, down the street, to where she had last seen Draco before he disappeared into the crowd and then apparated away. She let out a gentle sigh, her hand coming back up to stroke the Demiguise's soft, long fur. It was silky to the touch, and free of tangles. It was white too, but not the same white as Draco's hair, which as it crossed her mind, was probably quite the creepy thought. Her thoughts were really only on Draco though, and a guilty feeling for not hearing Percy the first time, she couldn't help it. She just couldn't shake the feeling that she had just met someone wonderful, someone important, special, and that she had let him go, when she should have held tight, and tried to keep him there, just a moment more, to ask if she'd see him again. She glanced back down at Percy, for the briefest of moments, and then returned her blue gray eyes to the spot. Her younger sibling looked up at her quizzically, his head tilted, and an eyebrow raised, as Hollivander looked rather displeased that he was not getting the comfort he felt he had been promised just yet. "It's just, I just met the most divine person." Leona's voice sounded distant as she continued, far away, clouded by thought. Would she ever see him again? It was so terribly unlikely, but she so hoped that she would. There was something special about him, and she didn't want to meet him once, and then never meet him, or see what made him seem so extraordinarily special, ever again. Her brother wrinkled his nose and made a sound of disgust. "Ew, you're already beginning to talk like them!" Percy exclaimed, making a face. That definitely drew her attention to him, and she gave him a gentle nudge. "Percy!" Leona fixed him with a stern glare, and he ceased making the face with a sigh. She saw his wand for the first time then, or more accurately, finally noticed it being waved in her sight. It was an odd dusty, somewhat creamy pink color, with Celtic markings and patterning on the delicate handle. It was think and longer than her own, and oddly suiting, regardless of the fact she'd have never painted Percy for having something the color of pink. It was always red, bright fiery reds, oranges, and yellows, never pink. She noticed that he seemed to be struggling with himself when her gaze landed on his face, and she tilted her head to the side. A moment later, he appeared to have won whatever mental battle he was fighting, and he looked up at her. "Who was it?" Percy asked hesitantly. She let out a soft sigh, and without even telling it to, her eyes returned to where he had last been. "Draco Malfoy." Leona replied softly. His eyes lit up. She saw the way his features became alight at the mention of the man's name out of the corner of her eye, and for the first time since he had said goodbye moments ago, she cracked her smile. Of course that's what would make him excited, the name if a Quidditch player. She playfully shook her head with a sigh. "Draco Malfoy? He played quidditch! He was a seeker for the Slytherin team! Are we going to see him again? Can you introduce me?" Percy asked excitedly, his whole form excited and ready. She couldn't help but give a small laugh. She didn't know how, but some how he knew every single person that had played in the Hogwarts Quidditch teams up to years more than twice his own age. If only he put such enthusiasm and memorization into things like math, or manners. The weight of his words hit her a moment later though, and once again, the amusement faded from her features. She couldn't introduce him, she didn't even know if she'd see him outside of old newspaper clippings. "I don't know Percy. I don't know if I'll ever see him again." There was a sadness to her voice that he didn't miss, and before she had even finished speaking, he had already scrunched up his nose again, and was looking even more grossed out than before. "Eww, do you like him?" Percy took a step back as her eyes fell on him again, and she looked at him in confusion. She didn't like Draco, did she? Of course she didn't, she couldn't, she had only just met him. Sure he was handsome, and seemed quite special and so many other wonderful things she couldn't even begin to explain, but she didn't know him, not at all. "What? No, Percy, of course not! I just met him today!" Leona quickly replied, dismissing his words and the idea that she did before it could work it's way into her brain and become a reality. She couldn't entirely fool herself however, with how much she wished to see him again. "I would like to see him again, though." Leona admitted quietly, her head hanging. Percy's gaze softened at that, noticing the way his sister's shoulders fell, and he began to reach out a hand to place reassuringly on her arm, before the creature on his shoulder gave a tug on his ear, and his hand flew to cover it from the creature, cupping it where it now ached. He gave the creature a glare, and then turned back to his sister.
xxx"Ow! Leona? You should probably take Hollivander back now. He's kinda upset." Percy let the moody Bowtruckle climb onto his hand, and he held it out to Leona. It took her a moment, but almost as soon as she saw the creature, a flip within her seemed to switch, and her sorrow over Draco seemed to disappear. "Oh, right. Hollivander come here my sweet." Leona murdered, holding her hand out for the creature to climb on. He climbed onto her palm, and began waving his arms about and making quiet sounds that she vaguely understood after knowing him and her other Bowtruckles for so long. She didn't perfectly understand him, but he didn't need to know that, not when she got all she needed to. She raised her hand closer to her face, and her hand fell from Dewitt's fur to comfortingly stroke along the creature's small back. It seemed he had been insulted, and he was not at all pleased. "Oh Hollivander, she didn't! She did? Oh Hollivander, that must have been so horrible." Leona dramatically clutched a hand to her chest with a gasp, feigning horrified surprise. He seemed to play into her reaction, and gave a sorrowful nod while Percy watched with a shaking head, and an expression that seemed very done with the stick creature's dramatics. Leona very gently pulled Hollivander closer, and he out his hands onto her cheek. "You poor, poor thing. Come here, It'll be alright." Leona cooed comfortingly, somewhat cradling him with her hand. They stayed that way for a moment, before he climbed over her hand and onto her shoulder, leaning to examine his reflection in a button. Finally, her senses seemed to fully return, and she remembered that they too resell had somewhere to be, and now definitely couldn't spare a moment to waste, or they'd be late. "Oh! Now we really should get going, come on Perce. We don't have time to waste." Leona lifted up Godric's cage, and Percy took it carefully in his arms, his wand held awkwardly in one hand, and then they were off, walking to the station.

xxxFor awhile, they walked in content, and hurried silence, weaving between the people they passed without a word. It stayed that way, until Percy spoke up, and Leona couldn't help but give a groan. "You know, the way you were looking after him was a lot like the way you looked while reading the Narnia books whenever Prince Caspian was mentioned. Except you aren't clutching the book to your chest and falling backwards onto your bed with a dreamy sigh." Percy commented slyly, looking up at his sister with a mischievous grin. Why did she had to have him as a brother? Why did he have to be the little brother? Why did he had to be like this sometimes, so often? "Percy!" He ignored her, not even bothering to acknowledge the faintly warning torn in which she spoke his name, save for his grin growing larger. He just carried right on, and it was all she could do to not stop right wear she was and stare at him with her mouth wide open, agape. "You were so sad when he got married to that star lady. I thought I saw you crying at one point." Percy grinned, pushing against her buttons a little harder. Oh, he didn't, the little- "Oh would you shut up Percy? I was fifteen, and I definitely didn't cry because of that. It was just heartfelt, and reminded me of Grandmama." Leona defended, crossing her arms as she walked. That was a lie. She had shed a few tears. For the reason Percy had mentioned. Of course she had known he wasn't real, and that they could never be; he was a character in a book, written words upon pages, but she had hoped to find someone like him some day, and for him to fall for a woman of stars, someone she could never even hope to compare to in her wildest dreams, had struck a crack into her heart. The crack had since healed, but she still remembered it. Prince Caspian hadn't been as stubborn or inclined to fight as Peter seemed to be, and he had struck her as someone with a truly good heart, who cared where many did not. He was a good king, a great one, even, and she still secretly hoped that she could find someone like him to spend her forever with. Draco came to her mind at that, but no, she had just met him, she could not allow her thoughts to go there. He was handsome, and certainly special, but she barely knew him, and she'd likely never get to know him past the rumors and talk of what he had done that she ignored, that most certainly did not paint him in kind. She wanted to know him, though. Percy's eyes sparkled knowingly, and his dark orbs shifted from her to the street in front of him with a satisfied smile. "Sure it did." Percy teased, grinning as if he knew all the secrets she tried to hide. She shot him a glare. Why did her brother have to know her so well? And why did he have to snoop in her room for things like this so often? He was her little brother, that's why, it's what he was meant to do. "You know, if we weren't surrounded by people, I'd be chasing you all over the place right now." Leona threatened playfully, giving him a light push. His eyes sparkled again, and she didn't like where this was going. "You still could." Percy made a lunge forward to start running, but her hand shot out and grabbed him by the back of his robes, catching him before he could run away, and causing him to jerk back with a scowl. "Percy, don't you dare! I need you not to get lost." Leona meant that, sincerely, but he just stuck his tongue out at her, and she rolled her eyes with a sigh. "Percy I'm serious! I can't lose you, you little ass." Leona pulled him closer with her arm resting on his far shoulder. "Hey!" Percy squirmed out of her hold, and sent her a glare. This time it was her who stuck her tongue out at him. "I know you love me anyway." Percy shot back, teasing. She lifted a hand to ruffle his hair before he could stop her as she spoke, grinning triumphantly as he mussed it back into place, "Of course I do, you're my pesky little brother. I have to." Leona's hand found his shoulder again, and she gave a squeeze. He just stuck his tongue out, and danced away with Godric's cage. She rolled her eyes. Even though he was being a tiny bit irritating and pesky in a way that only a younger sibling could be, she was glad to see that he was feeling well enough to be himself, and that his nerves had melted away to reveal his usual annoying little brother tendencies, which allowed them to go about their usual teasing back and forth. It was a relief to see him excited again, and not rattles with nerves and worries and uncertainties as he had been before he stepped into the store. He could definitely be annoying at times, but she loved him, so very much, and she was so happy and relieved to see him being himself again, and happily partaking in their normal rather childish actions and banter. It was nice to see. It was familiar, comforting almost, and showed that he was doing so much better, and ready to take on Hogwarts and what was to come without a worry in the world, as he did with every other thing that confronted him.

xxxSilence returned to them again as they continued walking, their sibling teases and antics temporarily ceased for now. The only conversation passed between them was Percy telling her of his experience getting a wand, and the new friend he had made named Rosie, who had been the one to upset Hollivander, after she had prompted him to tell her by asking how it had gone, because in his excitement and her meeting with Draco, he had completely forgotten to tell her. Now he was practically vibrating with anticipation and excitement at what he was no so very close to that he tried to keep locked in and held inside, and failed miserably at. He looked like he wanted to bounce off the walls and just leap and run, and if he wasn't holding Godric in his cage, she had a feeling that he would have done exactly that. He seemed to calm a little, and allow a few nerves to creep back in when she told him they were close, but his excitement still seemed to by far outnumber the nerves he felt, which she was quite relieved by and pleased with. She didn't want his first time to Hogwarts clouded by such an unfun thing like anxiety that had sucked the fun and excitement for this very day that he had been harboring for years. She wanted him to enjoy this to his fullest, and not worry, he shouldn't have to go through that. He was a kid, and her little brother, worrying was her job, and she could most certainly worry enough for the both of them.
xxxOnce they neared the station, and entered an area filled with muggles, Dewitt disappeared from view, and Hollivander hid under pushed down collar of her coat as he continued working away at a button on fabric imitating a pocket cover on the shoulder of her jacket, which she had felt him working on since they had begun walking. He had sent she button before, many times; it was an old jacket. What was so special about it now? What had him wanting to free it from it's holding strings so badly? Whatever it was, certainly had him quite determined, she had to give him that. Maybe that button was extra shiny and he liked the way his reflection looked in it? She strongly doubted that was it, but it was still a possibility, and the feel of him working at her coat didn't leave even as they entered the station, and became surrounded by noise. Percy stuck closer to her than he had before, and reached for her hand, which she gladly took. If he needed a little extra support, and some of her strength, she would gladly give it and help him out. He had never seen a train in person before, or been so close to one, or in a place so swarming with people without magic. He was used to busy streets, but this was different, and she could feel him press closer. Her hand came to rest on his far shoulder again, giving a gentle squeeze of comfort to assure that she was right there, and not going anywhere. She hoped that his ears were alright too. Trains and their stations were not exactly known for being the most quiet things, and being next to a train could get unbearably at times, especially to the more sensitive ears of her creatures. She wished she had remembered to take some precautions and make sure the ears of three beloved creatures outside of her bag were protected and not pierced by such a loud sound, but of course, that had been the one thing she had not been prepared for. She had forgotten that the machines and their engines made quite the boisterous racket, and now her brother, and likely her creatures were affected by that. Of course she had forgotten something she knew so very well. Of course. Next time she'd be sure not to forget, to remember this well. All she could do now because she had forgotten was hope that they would be okay, and that they weren't too troubled by the sounds. Hollivander at least seemed alright, as he was still contentedly working away at that poor button on her jacket, and Godric seemed only to care for preening his feathers and keeping steady as he was jostled about whole Percy carried him, so that was a relief. She couldn't see Dewitt, but he seemed to be doing alright too from the way his tail wrapped comfortingly around her arm, and he shifted, as if he were curiously looking around from the safety of her shoulder, so she hoped that meant he was alright too. He wasn't showing any signs of discomfort that she recognized, and she knew that he would let her know some how if he was, so she allowed herself to relax on that matter, and for now, let go of the worry that their ears would be damaged. These trains were quieter than the ones she was used to as well, so really, it seemed like she had been worrying about nothing, and that all would be just fine and none of her creatures would experience pain or discomfort in their distinct ears.
xxxSoon, Leona came to a stop before the entrance to the platform with a heaving sigh, her brother at her side, and their creatures with them. Hollivander still doing his thing with the button, and Dewitt watching from where he sat invisible upon her shoulder. Godric was looking around, awake and attentive from within his cage, and Leona gazed at the arch of bricks. Here they were, at the wizarding world platform between platforms nine and ten, nine and three quarters, an impossibly made a very possible reality by their magic. "Okay, we're here." Leona breathed. "I can see that." Percy responded, sounding very unimpressed with the wall they stood in front. She just ignored him, and resisted the urge to give her eyes a roll. "We just have to run through here, and then were there. You can meet up with the friend you made and I'll get your luggage and Godric to where they need to be and then find a seat away from you so you don't have me hovering over your shoulder with you new friend." Leona explained, gesturing to the wall. He looked quite confused, and his eyes were wide, but he nodded any way. She knelt down carefully to his level, and he set down Godric's cage so they could talk without bars in the way. "Okay, I'll see you really soon once we're through alright? I love you, Perce, be safe, and don't get into trouble just yet." Leona wrapped her arms around him, and he retuned, wrapping his arms around her in a sibling hug. She gave him a tight squeeze, and he had to choke the first couple words out. "I won't make any promises, but I love you too." Percy told her, trying to return the squeeze she had given him with the same amount of strength. He failed, and after another moment of a hug, ignoring the people who gave them looks as they passed by, they stood, and Percy was the first to run through the wall with Godirc. Leona followed right after, and before he could just pass her his owl's cage and go off to his friend, once Godric was in her hand, she pulled him close, and she planted a kiss on the top of his head once they were both through before he could get away, before standing, and watching him go find his friend. She turned her attention to the luggage car in the distance, where a man in uniform was loading trunks in, and she made her way towards him. Percy thankfully didn't have much, only a few small cases, one containing all he needed for school, so it would all be quite easy to retrieve from her bag. Dewitt slowly became visible again as she knelt down near the man with the bag being set on the floor, and Hollivander only took a moment's pause of his work to see what was going on. She pulled her wand from her boot, and opened the book bag wide with the password, and after warning her Snidget's to stay down and out of the way, which they thankfully did, on the second try of the accio spell, she stopped back, and watched the cases fly out from the bag, and land in a neat stack before the man waiting to load them in. She closed the bag so none of the creatures within could come out, and slipped her wand back in her boot and the bag on her shoulder before standing, and lifting Godric's cage from where she had set it on the floor. She didn't like the idea of him being in a cargo hold type place with the other owls, but he had chosen to travel like this outside the bag, rather than within, and truthfully, she wasn't sure when she'd be able to get Godric to Percy once they were there if he went in her bag; they wouldn't see much of each other, and because this place was new and strange, she wanted the owl to go to his person directly, not an Owlery to wait. Besides, at least this way, he'd go to where he needed to. "I'll see you soon Godric, alright? Be a good bird my darling, I'll miss you." Leona pressed her forehead to the bars of the cage, the owl doing the same, before she handed him off to the waiting man, and watched him give a chirp of goodbye. She waited a moment, before entering the train in a car several cars down the one Godric was now safely in, so she didn't risk entering at a place she wasn't meant to be.

xxxGetting on the train, was not at all a new experience for her, she had done this so many times before. In fact, she quite enjoyed riding trains; they were her favorite method of non magical travel, and she took them quite a lot to get to places within the same country, because she was incredibly not find of cars, and she did not want to risk apparating with her creatures in case something went wrong. If the train had sleeper cars that made it even more wonderful too, and if really was just an all around lovely experience, and she was sure the Hogwarts express, with it's painted colors of black and red, would be no different now that she had boarded it with a practiced step. She already looked forward to seeing what it's rhythmic thrumming and the way it swayed would be like, and she quite liked the story of how it had gotten where it was, and how the adventure of wizards stealing it from a muggle station had gone about. She was glad to be on a train again though, in all honestly, she had begun to miss it.
xxxShe was about to enter the next car, after spotting no empty compartments in the one she had entered in, but a voice stopped her. "Excuse me miss?" It was a timid voice, sounding quite shy. She stopped, and turned, and looked down to see a young girl, likely a first year, as she lacked the colors of a house, with ginger hair and green eyes, and a light dusting of freckles upon her nose and cherry red cheeks. "Yes?" Leona asked, offering a smile. The girl bit her lip, seeming to consider, and then opened her mouth to speak again. "What's that creature on your shoulder, the white one?" She inquired softly, her voice nearing a higher squeak. Leona bent down to her level then, giving a large, wide smile. She loved it when people genuinely asked about her creatures, especially the children, and most of the creature's, including Dewitt, liked it too. Hollivander normally would, but he didn't even bother looking up from his place by the button, seeming to have finally made some very significant progress on whatever his mission was with it. Leona extended her arm toward the girl, so Dewitt could climb out to her if he wanted to, and they both watched as he leaned toward the sweet girl. "This is Dewitt. He's my Demiguise, and an excellent assistant. He can see the future sometimes, and turn invisible. I think he likes you too much to disappear though." Leona answered, still smiling as she watched the girl gaze at Dewitt with her round, green eyes. She began to raise her had to pet him, before she drew it back shallot, and Leona tilted her head. "Go on, you can pet him if you like. It's alright, and he's very soft." Leona urged gently, nodding her head in Dewitt's direction. The girl regarded her for a moment, watching her closely, and then looked back to the kind beast. The demiguise leaned into her freckled hand as the young girl gingerly reached out to stroke his silky head. A wide smile came to her face, almost giddy, and after a moment, she pulled her hand away, still grinning. "Thank you, miss!" She gave a dip of her head, and then disappeared into a compartment not far away that Leona assumed she had come from. Leona stood with a nod and a smile, and Dewitt returned to where he had been on her shoulder, if not a littler closed to her than he had been before. She then went back to continuing her search for a seat. Percy had said he was going to sit near the front with Rosie, so she wanted to avoid there, but after she passed through another car and found no empty seats, she began to worry that she have to sit with him and his friend. At least she could just spend her time in the bag so she didn't disturb them, but Percy probably wouldn't appreciate that, or her weirding his new friend out by stepping into a freaking book bag and coming back out without her creatures. He had seemed so excited to see her again, and he didn't want to ruin it for them. She entered the next train car carefully, and almost right away, she spotted a compartment that looked empty, however, as soon as she got close enough to look fully inside at it's upholstered cushions of striped deep blue, she noticed immediately that it was not empty, and that within it, was someone she had least expected to see, but was overjoyed to see all the same.
xxx"Draco? What are you doing he- oh!" Hollivander managed to pull the button free in that moment, cutting off her confused words and knitted brow in an instant, but the force used to pull it from it's strings sent it flying into the open compartment, and the Bowtruckle made a move to jump after it, leaping from her shoulder and into the air. Before he could fall to the floor and injure himself or worse, her hand shot out to catch him, careful to not roughly grab him in a fist, and he landed on her fingers, slipping until he hung from her pinky with his little arms. Her heart was racing in her chest now, and her eyes were worried and wide. She had just discovered Draco on the train, and one if her precious friends had nearly jumped to his death for a button, a button that was exceedingly normal and not at all unique or spectacular, she might add. "Hollivander, no! We do not rip off buttons and then leap into someone's space to catch them. You could have hurt yourself." Leona scolded, her heart and worry pouring into her words. She hated scolding her creatures, or anyone or anything, but could have very nearly died, and she couldn't risk losing him. She loved Hollivander so much. He stuck his tongue out at her, with the same noise he had directed at the girl earlier slipping out. Leona gave a defeated sigh, a very unamused look taking hold of her face. "Oh yes, how charming. Right proper gentleman you are, aren't you? You know, this is exactly why Pickwickett gets to spend more time with me than the rest of you, he actually knows how to mind his manners." Leona reminded pointedly, her words dripping with sarcasm at their start. He simply ignored her, and gave her a look as he dangled from her pinky. She was about to roll her eyes and say more, but it was then that she noticed the button had landed on his lap, and her cheeks turned a very bright shade of red, made even more prominent by the lighting of the train. Her face immediately became nothing but apologetic and sorry. Of course this had to be the way they met again, her stumbling to his compartment where a Bowtruckle proceeded to launch a button at his face. She felt awful. "I'm so sorry, Draco. Once again I'm going to have to ask you to forgive me. This is Hollivander, one of my Bowtruckles, and he seems to be in quite the foul mood today." Leona let him dangle from her hand another moment for Draco to see, and then carefully flipped her hand so he was carefully scooped onto her hand and standing on her palm, before she moved her hand so he could step onto her free shoulder, near Dewitt's fingers. He huffed and sat himself in front of the Demiguise's fingers, staring daggers into the button on his lap. How crazy must he think she was now? Would he think that she had come on the train and boarded without knowing she wasn't meant to, or worse? God she hoped not, she so so hoped not. He was clearly going to Hogwarts for something, and if she was lucky enough to get to know him through that, she just hoped he didn't think she was too crazy now and had already decided to run from her as far as he possibly could. Was there a chance, a possibility, a likelihood, a hope, that he'd allow her to sit with him, however? Maybe they had been pushed together again by fate? Or something else? She was so happy to see him, so she would adore sitting with him, but she had a feeling he wouldn't want her to. She wanted to ask, but she really shouldn't, though she so felt she should, even though she shouldn't- "But, oh! Do you mind if I sit with you? I've been looking for awhile and not yet found an empty compartment, and as I'm helping out Hagrid with his class this year, what with the Triwizard Tournament being held, I doubt that any student, especially my brother and his friend-" Hollivander gave a yank to a stray strand of her hair. She looked at the creature with a questioning expression, silently asking what he had done that for. Except, she already knew. "Yes Vander, I know, the girl who called you a twig. We'll deal with that later." Leona rolled her eyes and bit back a less pleasant retort, and then turned her gaze back to Draco. He still felt so wonderful, so special. She so hoped that he'd say yes. "Anyway, I doubt anyone here would want to sit with a teacher. I can stay in this bag the entire time if you'd like, so you're alone, and I'm not disturbing you. Whatever you'd prefer." Leona bit her lip as she finished speaking, and her eyes searched his handsome features for an answer, anxiously awaiting what it would be. Her cheeks were still flushed from embarrassment, and surprise at seeing him again. What was he even doing here? Was he a new teacher, helping out with a current teacher like she was? Perhaps something with potions, or Defense Against the Dark Arts? Whatever the case, she was glad, so glad that this had allowed her to see him again, and that maybe she'd have some sort of chance at getting to know him and figuring out what made him so special after all.

Image
━mischievous and brave━━
Image
━━━━━━━and quidditch━━━
xxxHow was he supposed to act around girls that weren't his family? Was he supposed to say her name was pretty? Because it was, it was a really pretty name, and he liked it, a lot. It really suited her too, in his eyes at least, but that was probably creepy to say, so he didn't want to open his mouth and blurt that out just yet. Did she even like him saying her name was pretty though? Oh god, he really, really hoped she did and that he hadn't just seriously messed something up. At least he hadn't said something like she had cooties or that girls were gross or something mean and dumb like that. He had never really gone through that weird phase where he thought girls were contaminated like his best friend Brandon had; he was around his sister and his mom too much for that, and it had always confused him and seemed really pointless and unnecessarily childish and nasty. What was the point of it anyway? It was just dumb, they weren't any different really, there was no point. At least even if he had messed up with the compliment, he knew at least that he hadn't made that grievous blunder, and that he knew that was a huge no on what to say at least. His mother had taught him to be kind and treat everyone with respect, and not be so dumb and childish like that, and he wasn't going to forget his manners and disregard how he had been raised to keep them, especially in front of someone as wonderful as Rosie, and her beautiful braided brown hair and pretty name and pretty eyes. If he had, and his sister was here, she would have definitely scolded him for it and told him to apologize immediately; while she didn't care if he forgot his manners and how to behave around her, she wasn't going to accept him doing that around others, or him being rude and impolite and just like a jerk. Some of her creatures would reprimand him for it too, like Winks giving a glare and Dewitt just giving a long look. He wanted to say Hollivander would too, but considering his current mood and the way she had insulted him by calling him such an inferior thing, he doubted the offended little creature would care much if he said she had some stupid imaginary germ or something like that. The others would yank on his hair scoldingly or disapprovingly he was sure, but not Hollivander, at least not right now, with his little grudge against her. Would that ever go away without an apology from her? Probably not. Maybe Leona could make him forget or feel better or something? Probably, she seemed to always know exactly how to comfort her creatures with every little thing they could possibly ever be upset with. He didn't doubt that she could fix it somehow, or help the Bowtruckle to feel a little better at least. Right now he had a feeling he needed some dramatic, exaggerated coddling to feel better, and he was sure his sister would happily give that to the creature who was currently nursing a wound in his heart from being called a twig. A twig. The creature was this upset over being called a twig. Why did he have to get stuck with the most dramatic little green thing he had ever known? Why hadn't he named another of hers Hollivander, a calmer one, that was sweet, and open, and friendly, and didn't make rude noises at his hopefully new friend for not knowing what he was and then proceeding to call him what had insulted him the first time because she now knew it bothered the creature. He was sure Rosie was just playing and it was harmless with no malice behind it, she didn't at all strike him as someone that mean, so really, he had no need or reason to be so offended, yet he was, and Percy was responsible for it and making him feel better until Hollivander was back with his sister. It was a twig though, a twig, come on. He literally was a small bright green stick creature, like a collection of saplings that didn't grow quite right. A twig wasn't even a completely wrong description. Blegh. Why him? Why the overly dramatic Bowtruckle? Why did all that have to happen just as he was making a new, wonderful friend? Why couldn't he have gotten stuck with one of his sister's animal friends that actually wanted to help him make a friend rather than hold such a petty grudge over a really stupid thing. Bowtruckles honestly really were a lot like enchanted twigs, it was an honest mistake and Hollivander had just gotten ridiculously offended by it, and even more so when she purposely repeated it again, which was likely meant kindly and to tease and have some fun. Really, was it such a horrible thing? Were the feelings of the Bowtruckle really as fragile as he physically was? Good grief. First he had broken a lamp, and now this, and everything else. Why did things have to happen and make it harder for him to make a friend? Would she have even talked to him if she hadn't taken an interested in the green beast on his shoulder though? He remembered how she had seemed to ignore him and just barely acknowledge his existence before she saw it. She probably wouldn't have said anything to him other wise then, and he had a feeling he would have been to nervous and shy and unsure to start a conversation and say anything to her, so when he thought about it, he really did have the somewhat infuriating little creature to thank. Darn it. Of course. Well, he'd just have to never tell the creature about it then, so it didn't go to his head an inflate his ego to an even more outrageous level. So far the only truly reasonable things Hollivander had done came before Rosie walked in, and his hiding with the wands. He didn't blame the creature for that at all, and honestly, he wished he could hide too. He still felt the tiniest bit shaken and startled from his lamp incident, and the papers and boxes Rosie caused to fall down with the first two wands that weren't quite right for her and made their dissatisfaction at the clashing match known. Why were wands so startling? Would things like that happen often at Hogwarts? He really, truly hoped that they wouldn't, though he knew that was too much to hope for and ask. A bunch of eleven year olds just learning magic for the first time did not exactly spell for perfection and no startling surprises as things inevitably went wrong and exploded in his face. Great. Wonderful. Dandy. Just dandy. Ugh. He was not looking forward to those magical mishap surprises, not a single bit.

xxxAs he finished up with the kind, elderly wand making shopkeep, he could feel her green eyes on him, watching as they conversed and completed the monetary exchange, not unlike he had done while she was talking with the man, even if he had started to zone out and become distracted with other things toward the end of their exchange. He made his way to her, to ask if he'd see her again, and when she looked up at the sound of his voice, and a small smile grew on her lips, he felt his own widen. He decided that he liked her smile. A lot. She was fascinating, quite fascinating, and he really wanted to get to know her so much more, and at the very least, know enough to confidently call her his newest friend. When she responded, though, his smile faltered a moment, and his cheeks turned red. She was right, the question was definitely an odd one, and he already knew why. He swallowed. He listened as she continued, reasoning that they would obviously see each other again because they were both going to Hogwarts. His question had been really stupid, hadn't it? He felt really silly for it, and he really hoped that she wasn't upset with him for it. "Right, yeah, we are. Sorry, that was probably a really dumb question." Percy apologized sheepishly, his gaze falling down to the toes of his shoes, and the hard wooden floor. It's cracks and crevices were old, definitely older than even the man manning the shop, and probably far older than anyone but it's maker and the shop's owner possibly could have known. He really hoped she wasn't mad at him for his question or anything, although he really was glad that he would definitely see her again, and that it seemed she wanted to see him again too, since if she hadn't, she probably would have said something far different in answer. So his question had been okay maybe, and he hadn't just horribly messed this all up? Why was he even worrying about it? He never worried, but he liked her, and wanted to be her friend. That's why he worried. He liked her. Gross. He didn't like this worry, or the feelings. He really wanted to know her more though, so he supposed that he'd have to put up with them for a little while longer at least. Percy could do that, and he gladly would, as long as it meant he could be her friend. At least she seemed happy with his next question, and the smile he liked didn't leave her lips, so that was relief, and he felt some of his nervous feelings trickle away like a stream. His features lit up when she agreed to sit with him with a nod, saying that that sounded lovely, and his smile returned in full. She did want to sit with him then, and he'd get to sit with her on the train! He'd not be stuck with his sister and her creatures and the moody green one on his shoulder as he had assumed he'd be before. He'd get to sit with someone who hopefully saw him as a new friend. "I really look forward to sitting with you, then! I'm sure the ride will be really fun if I'm with you." Percy replied, likely sounding a bit to ecstatic about it as he gave another enthusiastic nod. What would sitting with her be like? Would he get to know a lot more about her? Would she have anything special to show him? Maybe they'd even get to walk together if he was lucky, or at least walk or head to the school together and sit together when they were there. He really hoped that they'd be able to. He perked up again at her question, though his excitement drooped a little as he realized they wouldn't get to walk to the train together, but it returned when she asked if he'd see her there. He gave an excited, energetic nod again, and had to stop himself from rolling on his feet and giving a happy skip or something in excitement. She'd find her sister, he'd go to his, and then they'd find each other again at the train and get to sit together, and talk, and do whatever else she wanted to do. "I hope you find your sister okay, I'll see you then, on the train! For sure." Percy promised nodding again in affirmation, and also excitement. He wasn't the best at keeping still when he was excited and really wanted to show the world and let it all out, much to the unpleasant dismay of Hollivander who had to hold on tight so he wouldn't fall. He watched as she paused, and her fingers tightened around the handle of the case he had seen her come in with, as she seemed to think of something, or tried to recall something. He wasn't sure which it was. He smiled even bigger when she told him she'd be near the front. Got it. Near the front. The front. "I'll remember that. I'll see you towards the front." Percy gave a happy nod, and watched as with her final word, she cast him one last look, and then left, walking out of the shop. He really looked forward to seeing her then. He watched the bells jingle as the door closed behind her, and while he missed her, he knew that he'd see her again soon, so there was no need to be sad about it, and mope about for not being able to see her for a little while before they'd get to ride the train together, and then live in the same castle until the school year ended, and they parted for the summer, and then saw each other again when their second year began. If they were lucky, they'd get to be in the same house too, or at least have classes together since something told him that she definitely was not a Gryffindor like he hoped to be, so they could see each other even more, if not all of the time save for sleep times and other things. He really hoped they shared classes at least, if they had to pick partners for things he'd much rather end up with her than anyone else, or someone he probably wouldn't at all get along with. He didn't really work well with a lot of people his age, but he really got along with her, and she really intrigued him and he wanted to know all that he could about who she was. He lingered in the place he stood a moment longer, staring thoughtfully at the door, and then followed in Rosie's elegant steps, and left, pushing the door open and hearing the bell's song behind him as he let the door close. He exited the shop with a skip in his step, and went to stand by his sister at her side, who looked to be quite distracted and wrapped up in her thoughts, and appeared to not be fully with him on Earth. Her mind was clearly in the clouds, and now he'd be struck trying to get it out. He just hoped that it wouldn't take awhile or too terribly long to snap her out of it and back into reality so he could tell her what happened and give her back the moody creature on his shoulder that continued to insit on messing with his hair. He really hated it when people touched and messed with his hair, he really, really did.

xxxSome time later, as he walked to the station with his sister in silence again, after they had talked and teased each other for a bit, he finally heard his sister's voice again, springing up from the surrounding sounds of the world around them. "So Percy, what wand did you get, and how did it go? Anything interesting happen?" Leona was looking down at him curiously, fixing him with a little smile, and he glanced down at the wand in his hand through the bars of Godric's cage. He still didn't know quite where to put his wand, so he was still holding onto it, but he didn't mind it that much. Percy liked the way it felt in his hand and the sort of warm tingle it spread throughout his arm. He tilted his body a little so she could see the wand better, and then answered proudly. "It's dogwood, with a Pheonix feather core, and 13 1/4 inches, and flexible, unless I'm remembering wrong. I like it though." Percy watched as she took a moment to look it over after listening closely to his words and perking up at the mention of it's core, her blue gray eyes scanning the wand, and examining it carefully. Finally, she looked to him again with a wider smile. "It's pretty, like something Grandmama would have loved. She'd be so happy to see you with it. It suits you." Leona commented, her voice soft and gentle, and more than a little loving. He could hear the fondness, and the sorrow in her voice as she mentioned their grandmother, and how she'd have loved it, but he was too happy that his sister thought it suited him to put much thought into it. He beamed up at her, his grin wide and large and filled with mirth, and then allowed his thoughts to fall back to the rest of his question, and his position to return to normal. She had asked what else had happened, and if anything interesting happened, not just about his wand, so he really should answer that too. He wanted to tell her about how pretty Rosie had been and about how much he loved her name and enjoyed her company, but he didn't want to tell Leona everything; he wanted to keep that as a little secret for himself, and for Rosie, if he ever told her the first part too, which he doubted that he ever would. His grin grew even more at the thought of her again, almost too wide for his mouth to stretch. "I also met this really lovely girl. Her name is Rosie, and she's from around here and a wizarding family. She got a cool black wand with thorns, and I'm going to sit with her on the train. She said she'll be near the front! She was also the one who upset Vander by calling him an enchanted twig when she didn't know what he was and was asking. She also compared him to some chocolate frog candy or something. And I may have sorta kinda, brokenalamp." Percy slurred the final three words together quickly in a mumble, hoping that his sister wouldn't hear them or pay them mind after the rest of his excited, hurried, babbling. She heard it though, she heard it crystal clear, and he was caught. He noticed Leona tense, all else he said forgotten for the time being, her older sister instincts rising up to show themselves as clearly as his words apparently had been. Her hand came to his shoulder, and she came to a halt, stopping him with her, and they stopped walking. She looked into his eyes, her demeanor instantly switching from cheerful to concern. He swallowed. "Percy, you broke a lamp?" Leona questioned, her hand tightening on his shoulder. Her voice was stern, and worried, and very concerned, eyes rapidly searching his own. His features fell, and he bit his lip. Why had he said that? He had to tell her, he couldn't lie or leave that out. Guilt took hold of his features, and he resisted the urge to look down. He wanted this to be sincere, and for her to trust and believe him, and she wouldn't do that if he avoided her gaze. "It was an accident I swear! He was having me test out a wand before this one and it just kinda zapped the lamp when I waved it. I promise I didn't mean to! I tried paying for it with the extra you gave me, but he wouldn't take it. He said it was an easy fix with magic so there wasn't a need." Percy explained, his voice almost pleading her to believe. He was telling the truth, he really was. He bit his lip as he waited for her to reply. She regarded him carefully for a moment, her expression filled with worry and a mix of things he couldn't quite detect, before relenting with a sigh, and letting her hand fall back to her side. He let out a sigh of relief. She believed him, she did. "If you're sure it's okay. We just need to be really careful, we don't want to worry mom if something happens." Leona warned gently, searching his features a moment more, until she knew that he had heard and understood, and then began walking again. He followed her, but a little slower than he had been before, his earlier excitement falling away.
xxxSilence surrounded them again, before he piped up a few minutes later, testing the waters a bit to see if he could ask her something again, and if she was still upset. He looked up at her cautiously, and caught her questioning eye. He swallowed again. Here goes. "I think the wand that broke the lamp when I used it was silver aspen, the really elite dueling wand one? Do you think I'll be good at dueling?" Percy inquired softly, searching her face as she looked to him. He could see Hollivander working away at a button on her jacket, but his focus was on the way her lips changed into a smile, and she gave a faint shrug. Phew, she wasn't too upset, or still upset with him. "I have no idea Percy, I'm really not the person to ask." Leona responded, tilting her head. She was right, she really wasn't the person to ask about that. Spells of any kind had never been her strong suit, and the patronus charm was still the only one he had ever seen her cast perfectly every time without a single fumble, and that was really only useful in guarding against dementors, and making creatures bat at it in the air like it's real as her little owl patronus flew around, so he wasn't sure how much that showed either. Dementors weren't an issue where they were and where she went, so really, while it was pretty, and she adored it, to him at least, it just seemed pretty useless. She hadn't been able to answer his question though, and he felt his smile fall a tiny bit. Dueling was another thing that really sparked his interest- of course not nearly as much as Quidditch, but still-, and if a prestigious dueling wand had rejected him, did that mean he was going to be absolutely terrible at it? Leona saw his expression falter and gave him a little nudge with a growing smile, looking down at him lovingly, and playfully too. "But, hey, in a few years, who knows. I'm sure you'll get to learn it when you're a little older, and then we'll see if you're any good. I'm sure you'll do great at it Perce." Leona added, sending him an even wider smile. That helped to ease his worries right away, and his smile returned to where it had been before it faltered. She may have some weird creatures, and not be home a lot, but Leona really was a good sister, and she always knew how to cheer him up, and exactly what to say to erase his worries and get him excited for things again, which he now was, and it showed prominently as they continued walking, and he found it increasingly difficult not to so with skips and hops between each of his steps.

xxxSoon, the both of them and the three beasts left the area of wizards, and arrived at the streets leading to the no-maj station, it's looming walls close and in their sight. He watched as Dewitt vanished from all sight into what looked like thin air, and felt himself shiver. He really never was going to get used to him doing that, even if he had grown up with the creature doing it. Hollivander did little to hide save for crawling under her folded jacket collar and continuing to pull at the button, but he was small enough as to wear no one would even notice him without a second glance, and if they'd just see him, they'd just see a blob of bright green, which they could easily perceive as a trick of their light of their eyes, or some ghastly scarf sticking up from the material of what appeared to be a pocket. Godric wasn't magical so he didn't need to hide, but it still probably looked really weird to the passing people, and he wasn't sure how he felt about it. Owls weren't normal pets, and were probably illegal for no-maj to own as far as he knew, but were the people used to seeing them brought here? Was it common to see, often? Were they used to it? Or was it hidden by one of the spells that seemed to make no-maj look away from certain magical instances, or forget they happened altogether? He didn't know, but so far it all seemed to be alright, so he just had to hope it was okay.
xxxA little later, and they were inside the station, moving carefully around the bustling people it was filled with. He thought he saw a few witches and wizards with their things heading to the train as well, but he didn't know enough about what it normally looked like to be sure, and himself and his sister weren't exactly a normal enough instance to at all go by or use as an example. She had a bag filled with creatures and an invisible one on her shoulder, and a moody green Bowtruckle on the other, and he had no luggage, but an owl in an oversized cage so he'd have more space to stretch his wings. It was odd walking amongst so many people in the station though, which was what drew and demanded most of his attention, and he wasn't sure if he liked the sounds or how loud it was, especially near the trains. It hurt his ears a bit honestly, and he could see that it bothered Leona too, and that her brow seemed to be knitted in worry for her creatures. Why did trains have to be so darn loud? And why did there have to be so many people? He didn't like it. It made him feel nervous, and weird, and he stuck closer to his sister, finding comfort in the way her hand found it's way on his shoulder, and pulled him closer to her side. She really was being a great sister, and he was so very thankful for that.

xxxFinally, after some more walking, and nearly getting lost, and then a brief goodbye with a big hug and kiss on the forehead from his sister, he was at last on the right platform of the train, and staring straight at the Hogwarts Express. It was a lot older than he was expecting honestly, but he liked the colors. It was painted in a long since faded black that in his opinion, was in need of a little touch up, and a bright, almost fire engine red that was just to his liking. Red was his favorite color, and he loved the way it looked on the train. It was fitting too, he really liked it, and it did well as a stark difference from the black, or however that was meant to be said. He had a tendency to zone out and think of other things when his mother started talking to him about things like that when he helped her with the shop; he found talk of design and room colors and palettes and ways to improve the shop kinda boring. He didn't care, and he didn't really have an eye for design, or colors, or things like that at all. When Leona had been a teenager she had asked him which outfit was better a couple times, and all he had been able to do was shrugged. They always looked equally weird or exceedingly normal and positively un-extraordinary, and very much the same to him, so he had never been able to help her, and he didn't even know why she was asking him anyways. He was a kid, what did he know about women's fashion and what looked good and what didn't? As long as someone wasn't wearing a barrel or a burlap sack he didn't really care what they wore, it largely looked the same to him, and didn't matter in his mind. A suit was a suit and a dress was a dress, they weren't that special. He just didn't get it. Regardless though, he did really like the train and the way it looked; it was cool, and he was excited to ride in one for the first time. He didn't get to think on that much more though, as Rosie returned to his mind, and his nerves started to creep in again. He still felt a little weird and discombobulated after running through a wall, but he hoped that no one would notice, or that Rosie at least wouldn't. She had grown up in a magical family, she was probably used to this and much more, and he didn't want to seem like an idiot or a weirdo or anything like that in front of her. Swallowing, he took a deep breath, and then boarded the train after making his way to the front, and carefully minding the large step it took to get on. He could feel his heart beating rapidly in his chest, hammering away at it's cage if his ribs, and the blood rushing through his ears as he walked along the isle, the hand not holding his wand absentmindedly trailing along the wall and skipping over the compartment windows as he searched for Rosie, and if he found her, he really hoped that she wouldn't be able to hear the sound of his rapidly beating heart, that would be really embarrassing, and awkward to explain. Thankfully, it wasn't long before he found Rosie in the quickly filling train in the second coach, and his heart had calmed by then, and entered the compartment she was in with a huge smile. "Rosie!" Percy greeted as he stepped inside, grinning gleefully at her from ear to ear He plopped down on the seat across from her with a slight bounce, his form springing slightly back up after it collided with the soft cushion, his fingers running along the striped bluish colored fabric as he leaned forward eagerly, all excited and ready to talk. He hoped that he hadn't made her wait, or that she had been here for awhile, bored and alone. "When did you get here? I really hope I haven't made you wait too long." Percy asked, his hands finally settling in place at his sides as he eagerly watched her. Her case was on her lap, so he hoped that wasn't a sigh she had been here for ages without him. He was so very excited to see her again though, and it really showed in his smile, or at least he thought it did. He was just so happy to see his new friend again after looking forward to sitting with her for the entire time it took him to get here, back to her. "How did finding your sister go?" Percy looked at her with his head cocked to the side, and then his mind returned to his own sister, and how off and odd she had been when he found her outside Ollivander's. "Mine was acting all weird." Percy frowned as he pictured the look he had seen in her eyes, one of a longing of some kind, like she was missing an old friend. He had never really seen her with that look before, it was hard to explain. "I think she's in love, or has a crush or something. It's really weird, I'm not sure I like it." Percy confessed, leaning back as his brows furrowed further in thought, and his arms folded against his chest, his wand falling onto his lap as his fingers at last let the wood go. "I do like Draco Malfoy though, she was talking with him before he left or something. He played Quidditch, so I don't mind it too much if she is." He knew she would never admit it, but he knew that his sister already definitely had the biggest, gigantic crush on Draco Malfoy, and he had only just meant. A moment later, after the words had slipped from his mouth though, he realized that Rosie probably didn't want to hear about that, and he felt his cheeks heat up again. He looked to Rosie again, his dark eyes focusing on her, and he leaned forward again. "That's probably really boring and gross though, I'm sorry." Percy sent her an apologetic look, and then leaned forward a bit more, excitement creeping quickly back onto his features, and a bright smile taking hold of his lips. "Anyway, are you excited? I am, I think anyway. I've been waiting for this for years." Percy hoped that she was excited to, and that he wasn't the only one ready to bounce off the walls with excitement and joy. She had a sister who went here, or at least he assumed his sister did, so she had probably known about it a lot longer than he had, and had a longer wait to get here than the few years he had known this was coming. It was finally the day though, the day he'd get to Hogwarts and hopefully find his home in the house of red and gold, Gryffindor, and now he had a friend to share that excitement and anticipation with, so now, how long he had been waiting didn't really matter all that much, or at all in comparison. Either way though, he was so excited, and even more excited to be spending it with her, hopefully, if he didn't accidentally annoy her way first. He really hoped he wouldn't. He was about to open his mouth to ask another thing, forgetting that he was probably talking too much and asking things before she had any chance of catching up again, but before he had the chance, another strange voice spoke up, an unfamiliar one, and stole the words from his throat. His head snapped to the source, and his eyes widened. "Hi. Do you think I could sit with you two? There aren't any seats left." It was a boy, around their age, with curly hair longer than his own, and he seemed nervous, and a little shy. He bit his lip. The train was filling up really quick, he wasn't that surprised someone would need to sit with them, Rosie seemed incredibly lucky to have snagged an empty one. He looked to Rosie then, searching her gentle features that carried a sharpness to them as well, and felt his brows furrow. He didn't want to put the pressure onto her, but he also didn't want to make the descion without her, and make a choice she wasn't happy with. Slowly, he turned back to the boy, and let his lip free of his worried teeth. "I'm okay with it if she is." Percy told him softly, glancing back to Rosie. He really was alright with it, completely, but he wanted her to be okay with it too. He was a bit bummed that he might not get to have Rosie all to himself to get to know for the trained, but someone new also meant another new friend, and he wasn't about to say no to another friendship. The boy seemed nice enough, if Rosie agreed, maybe all three of them could become really close friends? Maybe they could all spend a lot of time together and have fun, and they'd get to spend time with him too? It all depended on Rosie really, but he didn't mind what her choice was either way. He'd be happy with whatever she answered honestly, as long as he still got to sit wit her at least.

Iris
Lovely Friend
Posts: 198
Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 12:50 pm

[ f o u r ] unsavory places

Post by Iris » Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:20 pm

xxxxImage
Image
Image
xImage
In a perfect world, or one even remotely less nonsensical than the one he found himself in, Draco would have never stepped foot on the Hogwarts Express ever again after the conclusion of his traumatic final year at the magical school. If things had moved at a different pace, in a different direction, he wouldn't have had any reason to- and he sure as hell didn't have the desire to come back. It also wasn't as if he need the job of assisting Professor Snape in teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts- from a financial point of view the idea seemed laughable, and he certainly possessed the adequate independent wealth to maintain the lifestyle of a Malfoy without ever obtaining any sort of work, let alone a teaching position at Hogwarts. Yet, even with wealth and attitude considered, it didn't seem to matter. Life had that sort of way about it, he knew better than most, and despite everything, he was still there all the same. There, and without a clue as to what he would be arriving to.

While under some circumstances it might be considered paranoia, Draco knew it wasn't the case here. It wasn't as if his schooling experience had just been bad, it had been haunting. He came from a generation of loss in the British wizarding community. He may have survived the war, but in ways even more notable than many of his classmates, he hadn't survived the war unscathed. They were a damaged generation in so many ways, haunted by the deaths that had surrounded them. Draco felt that, he understood that tragedy, and yet with him it was still so different. Different because he wasn't seen as a victim by most, because he was a Death Eater who managed to end the war with his life and his freedom both in tact. The Malfoy name was one associated with the Dark Lord now, with the deaths of so many, and while it was tarnished everywhere, Draco couldn't imagine that the memory of Hogwarts would be any more forgiving. It was true that most of the students he had attended the magical school with were now graduated, but not all of them, and the surviving staff would still be present and in even higher positions than the last time he was there. He may have been welcomed to the school in the capacity of aiding Professor Snape in teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts, but he could only speculate on his welcome beyond that- especially since the school was now, and felt like it always had been, run by Gryffindors in the highest positions.

Draco's eyes remained locked on the window to the right of him, his thoughts drifting so easily back to Dumbledore as they so typically did. It was a strange thing, really, how he thought about him now. In his youth, Draco had always disliked the man. A Gryffindor himself, Dumbledore always showed favoritism towards the House of Gryffindor, and by extension, seemed the most distant from their most competitive house, the Slytherins. Year after year Dumbledore had showed his favoritism, had adored Harry Potter in a way that Draco had never understood and that he was certain he never would. It was no secret, it had never been attempted to be kept as a secret to Draco's knowledge; Dumbledore loved Gryffindors, and Harry Potter most of all. All of the rule breaking and bending and double standards and house cup points and vouching for in front of the ministry- Dumbledore adored Potter, as well as Weasley and Granger. Watching the Gryffindor love affair as someone who was hardly the most adamant fan of Harry Potter and the Gryffindor House as a whole, it was all too easy for Draco to hold a grudge against Dumbledore and root for him to be ever so graciously let go from his position, for Snape to be the Headmaster of Hogwarts in his place. Of course, he hadn't exactly been anticipating the way in which that desire might just come to fruition. When he thought about Dumbledore now, he still remembered all of the things he detested about the man. It was easy to remember- year after year of bitterness building within the Slytherin boy.

Oddly enough, however, he almost wished that those feelings of bitterness would be the only memories he had of the man, that it was the last impression he had ever had of the man who was said to be the greatest wizard of his time. Instead, that bitterness always ended up shifting in to other memories. The memories of that night, the last night, the sight of the old man on the astronomy tower. Those were the memories he was always left with, the sight of the green light leaving Snape's wand and the sight of the headmaster falling and Bellatrix raising her wand and cackling in celebration, Draco knowing what he had just helped to cause and the fear and weight that that realization brought. Those were the memories that he was always left with the longest, that his brain chose to mull over again and again and as if the entirety of that night hadn't replayed in his mind enough times when he was awake, it had hardly been a rarity for them to greet him as he slept. While it was unquestionably far easier for his mind to detach from what he had witnessed and what he had done in those years than it would be for most, they still crept up on him given the right opportunity. That was what he was returning to- he was returning to the damned school, to a school that was now run by McConagall, Dumbledore's former protege of sorts, for Ezra. Thankfully, now that he was physically on the train, he found himself being interrupted before he could really force himself to contemplate the dysfunction of that reality. Draco found himself oddly thankful for that disruption- oddly, not only because it was a distraction from his thoughts on the situation he was in or even worse, entering in to, but from the familiar sound of the voice that brought him out of his thoughts.

Deorne?

He hadn't been expecting to see anyone he knew until he arrived at Hogwarts. It wasn't an unreasonable expectation, really. The train, by it's very nature, was packed full of children. He may have attended school with sixth and seventh year students, but he had been rather preoccupied his own sixth year, spending most of it in the room of requirement mending the vanishing cabinet, and during the seventh year with Voldemort and the stress of the new war. Not that he likely would have been overly interested in the affairs of children regardless, but especially under the circumstances of his final years in attendance, he hadn't exactly been diligent with his responsibilities as a prefect. Sure, the sixths and seventh years could have held some familiar faces- and they did in one regard, with Ezra presumably being somewhere on the train. Other than her, though, Draco didn't know anyone. Or, at least, he had thought he didn't.

It was odd, perhaps, how easily he was able to remember the sound of her voice after such a brief meeting. Sure, they had just met, but the train was full of students and he had heard dozens of voices since he had last seen her, even if they had only spoken minutes ago. Yet, the moment he was pulled from his thoughts by the call of his name, he recognized it completely. His assumption was quickly proven to be correct as he turned his head toward the source of the sound, catching sight of the same American witch with the light blue bag, even if now she was without any additional creatures past the one Draco had found to be such an odd sight in Diagon Alley. Or, at least, he assumed she was without any additions- an assumption, it seemed, that would promptly be proven incorrect as she didn't even have the chance to finish her sentence before something he hadn't even noticed before went flying, the American witch quickly leaping forward to catch whatever it was. It was only when she caught a creature that he even noticed she had it, although after their first meeting the sight of a strange little creature wasn't something that even made him think twice. Maybe it had the ability to turn invisible too, for all Draco knew. Instead, in addition to the confusion that began to resonate due to her somehow being on the train as well for some reason, the only other thing that really caught his attention in that precise moment wasn't the creature- no, it was the reflexes that she had to catch it. If she was any good on a broom she might have made for a fair seeker with those reflexes had she attended Hogwarts, Draco mused, though further deep thought on the subject was quickly disregarded as he watched her begin to argue with the strange little creature that she caught. Right- now that was the level of strangeness that Draco remembered from the alley.

Yet for as odd as it might have been - a level of strangeness that Draco really couldn't believe could possibly be overstated - even Draco himself couldn't deny that he found some sort of subtle amusement in the spectacle at large or even more direction the attitude of what immediately appeared to be an annoying little pesky creature, though he clearly wasn't even close to holding the adequate familiarity to even make such a decision. While he was watching the apparently rude little creature and it's human keeper have something of a dispute, Draco's hand moved forward against his leg, feeling something on his lap that clearly shouldn't have been there. Glancing down, Draco's brows raised when he spotted a button in his lap that so clearly didn't belong to him. So that's where the disputed button had went. Still, Draco's eyes were quick to move back to the woman who had joined him with such an interesting entrance when he heard her speaking again, this time referring to him if his name laced in to an apology was any clue.

"A bowtruckle?" He vividly remembered her briefly mentioning the creature when the two of them had been speaking earlier. He had some experience with magical wildlife, given his upbringing in the world and his studies at the infamous school of Hogwarts. His memories of his days in that half-giant moron's Care of Magical Creatures class hadn't yet been forgotten, the Buckbeak interaction always one of the first to come to mind -fun times- but while he was no stranger to the existence of certain magical creatures, this new witch seemed to have surprises in each of their meetings so far. Perhaps that wasn't much of a statistic to go off of, given that it was only their second meeting, but Draco had something of a feeling that "Looks more like a Mandrake than a twig," he assessed as he eyed the annoying little creature, knowing full well that such an assessment probably wouldn't be a welcome one to the creature if what he had overheard from the witch's side of the conversation was anything to go off of. Of course, his opinion of Mandrakes weren't the highest either. He could still remember the first time he had ever so much as touched one. It had been Second Year Herbology when Professor Sprout had her students move the young plants from one pot to another. While he would perhaps take some of the blame for sticking his finger in the wide open mouth of the obnoxiously wailing plant to which he had been assigned, the damned thing had still bitten down on him. It was the start of an incredibly brief relationship between Draco and the plant, one that remained in such close proximity only for the remainder of that one class period, and yet had definitely soured his view of the plants from then on. Besides, to hear the cries of a mature Mandrake meant death - an odd fact in theory but one that was made infamous in practice in the wizarding world of Great Britain as well after the death of the Minister of Magic Venusia Crickerly in 1912 following a Mandrake-related gardening accident - so why exactly would he care to needlessly spend his time in the vicinity of such loathsome creatures?

He eyed the creature once more, focusing on the strange creature that he was once more certain to have never had learned of in his studies. "Perhaps the chopped root of a Mandrake?" He amended after a moment of far more deliberation than such a situation would ever rightfully call for, taking in to account the odd appearance and the size of the creature. Perhaps one might claim that it looked more like a twig that held the widely used leaves of the plant, and the resemblance wasn't one that Draco could truly deny, but the movement and presumed nature made him associate it more closely with the slaughtered root of the sentient plant. It was something he was oddly certain of as he eyed it. While his experience with actual living Mandrake plants had been deliberately limited, he had far more experience eyeing the chopped up portions of the plant after it had reached maturity through textbooks and in practice during potions class, though no potion he personally ever needed to brew for his own use outside of class had called for such an ingredient. It was more specialized than most ingredients he found himself having use for, though that didn't always correlate to availability or where, exactly, one would have to go to find such things. Mandrake root was oddly readily available, Draco always thought, especially now when he couldn't even manage to have bought boomslang skin in Knockturn Alley before the deadline he needed in order to make it to the train.

Without verbally answering her earlier question of whether or not he minded if she sat with him, a question that perplexed him though not nearly to the level of just about everything else he had witnessed during their interactions so far, Draco motioned with his hand to the seat across from him in an invitation to sit with him. Why not? The woman might have been Loony Lovegood level strange, but there was something about her. She didn't act like anyone he knew, that was for damned sure, but that wasn't necessarily a negative thing by any stretch of the imagination. She didn't act scared, suspicious, or like she wanted something. Instead, there was a strange openness about the beautiful American witch, and something else as well that he couldn't quite place, and he didn't mind having the company of that. Whatever that was, it was something positive. "You said you're teaching with Hagrid at Hogwarts?" He asked, recalling back to her reasoning for why none of the kids would probably want her to sit with them. Personally he thought it should have been the other way around- that it was too unpleasant to deal with all of the magical children running about on the journey from the platform all the way back to Hogwarts, but perhaps she saw it differently. "I would have guessed arithmancy," he teased in somewhat of a deadpan manner, picking up the button that had landed on to his lap thanks in no small part to the bowtruckle, his thumb circling the smooth surface of the button for a moment before he raised his hand, offering the woman her button back. Of course, now that he knew why she was there, it made perfect sense. Not her behavior necessarily, as he doubted there'd be a time when he didn't find that unexplainable, but her presence on the primarily student transporting Hogwart Express and apparent abundance of strange creatures.

"Let's hope Hogwarts is a bit better at controlling the variables during this tournament than the last," he mused, remembering just how poorly the only Triwizard Tournament he had ever witnessed had went. Of course he hadn't liked it from the beginning, given that naturally the famous Harry Potter had been chosen even though he had been underage at the time and therefor made a hobby out of personally making objects to taunt the boy and cheered for his competition with genuine hopes that he would be the very first one to be knocked out of the competition regardless of which school he was competing for. Somehow, though, the tournament had managed to get worse than just having Potter compete for glory. It had ended in the untimely death of Hufflepuff, someone Draco took no issue with and who was practically unanimously beloved by his classmates, and even worse than that a more severe proclamation that the Dark Lord really had returned. Needless to say, it wasn't something that inspired particularly wonderful memories in hindsight. At least the Dark Lord was gone now though, and the tournament could carry on without such foreboding interruptions as it had faced years ago. "Though, I suppose that doesn't effect either of us, does it?" They were both teachers, not the students who would even be open to putting their names in the goblet. She had a brother, but if he had just been looking for a wand at Ollivander's, the odds that he would actually be of age to put his name in were abysmal. Draco didn't have any siblings or anyone he cared about in attendance that could be negatively effected by anything going wrong in the tournament. Well- he was aware that Ezra would be putting her name in and was something of a favorite to be chosen, but for some reason, he didn't feel as if that quite counted. Sure, she was going to be his wife in the future, yet it still felt different, impersonal. So impersonal that she didn't even count as a risk of loss in his mind as he thought about it- though, he knew, his father would surely have been devastated.


xxxxxImage
Image
Image
xxImage


It felt strange. Not being alone, necessarily, but being in such a distinctly strange place along without those who she knew...it was odd. It felt strange in a way she was unfamiliar with, a way that made her almost uneasy for the briefest of moments before her excitement at what was to lie ahead batted such negativity away with a ferocity she knew so well. Strange but not unwelcome, she so easily reminded herself, knowing that Hogwarts was the necessary step to learn what she so desperately wanted to. The collection of books in her library at home was sizable, but some things couldn't just be read. Besides, she'd finally be able to do actual magic with a wand, and it would be legal while she was on the Hogwarts campus. With that in mind, Rosie tried to embrace the strange feeling, knowing that there was little chance that it would be leaving her any time soon. Her eyes glancing down at the small case on her lap once more, an idea of how to pass the time before she was to hopefully be joined by that amusing American wizard. Her mind shifted to her father claiming to have added a few things to the case, and then seeing a glimpse of a few unfamiliar things when she had been placing the chocolate frogs in to the case back in Diagon Alley. Once her curiosity was piqued, only a few brief moments of hesitation caused her to pause before her fingers went to the silver clasps, loosening them as she had before. Unsure of what exactly might be in there, her eyes glanced at the door that opened the compartment to the rest of the train for a moment before angling herself towards the door so that the opening of the case would be decidedly away from any passing eyes. Her family had known Rosie's dark interests from an early age and as such had always put care in to cautioning her against carelessly revealing them to others. While there wasn't anything that she knew of that was bad or taboo by any standard in the case, she didn't know what her father had put in there and almost found herself hoping that it would be something that shouldn't have been seen. How wicked would that be, after all?

Once she had readjusted herself and the case, Rosie eyed the door once more before finally opening the case again- this time fully, so she would be able to properly see the contents inside. At first she noticed her new beloved wand, the young witch being sure to quickly take that out of the case and set it beside herself before returning her attention to the case. Most of what she saw was familiar- robes and clothes and the like, with a few books of her own that she had brought despite Ezra's sarcasm and assurances that the Hogwarts library would have any book that she would ever have need for. However, the book on top of the stack wasn't one that she immediately recognized. It was smaller than most of the books she had, and it had a dark leather binding who's wear she didn't immediately recognize. Her eyes moved to the door once more before she reached in to the case to carefully grab the book, her hold on it light and increasingly excited as she noticed the piece of parchment tucked out of the pages. Pulling it out, she saw that it was a filing from Cobb and Webb's, a Knockturn Alley shop that Rosie had read about countless times and had desperately wanted to visit for herself only to be prohibited from doing so by her parents.

Scanning the parchment, her eyes moved to the description. It read : 1753, Fair Condition : Tenebris Multas Dispositiones Praecedentes. She pressed her lips together as her eyes scanned the title. Rosie had a few books with Latin titles at home, continued to study the language regularly, but she still wasn't anywhere close to fluent- for now, English and French would remain the only languages she could claim to be that proficient in. Still, even with her less than fluent understanding of the language, she immediately recognized 'tenebris' as the translation of 'dark', an understanding that did little but increase her excitement at being gifted the book. Sliding the piece of parchment back in to the book's pages, excited but knowing now certainly wasn't the time to delve in to such works. Instead, the eleven year old was sure to be careful as she gently folded the book in to a black robe at the top of her case, enveloping the over two century old book in to the soft fabric to make certain that it was completely covered and hidden away from anything that could easily damage it. As she moved to tuck the robe away, however, she spotted another unfamiliar object tucked away in the spot that had been beneath it. Carefully setting the robe covering her book in to the corner of the charmed case, her eyes locked first on to the box. As soon as she moved to lift the box, she felt it was heavier than she had anticipated- not heavy, but heavier than the book that she had just discovered, and alone far heavier than the entirety of the case was to carry when the gift was inside. Still, eyeing the exterior, she was quick to discover that it wasn't a box at all. Instead, it was a case. The sides of the dark reddish exterior held silver clasps, and as she eyed the top, she spotted a dark outline of a small and stocky dog. It wasn't just any outline, though- it was a magical one, one that had the figure of the stocky dog tilting it's head, the outline of the tail slowly wagging back at her. The sight brought a small smile to her face, even as her mind wandered elsewhere for the briefest of moments.

The Adelinde family didn't have a pet dog- they never had for as long as Rosie had been alive, at least. Still, the sight reminded her of her family in another way. She distinctly remembered that her uncle was an animagus, with his other form being some sort of canine. Had it been an English Bulldog? She couldn't be positive, exactly, as she likely wasn't even supposed to know what she did. It had just slipped once when she was younger, when Rosie had been playing in the water with her mother. She could remember so clearly that cloudy day, up past her knees in the water as she looked back to her mother who wouldn't go nearly as far out despite their massive height difference at the time. Rosie had made a comment about the the birds that flew above them, the words prompting her mother to tell her that it was possible for witches and wizards to be another animal if they were good and patient enough. She told Rosie that her uncle was an animagus- the young girl's father's brother. He could turn to a dog at will, she had explained, but it was an ability few in the magical community ever had the patience, talent, and interest to obtain. Of course that had intrigued Rosie, the young girl never forgetting that conversation and hell bent on becoming an animagus one day as well. She had never stressed the topic with either of her parents after that, however, despite the interest she felt associated with the subject. It was her father's brother, after all, and that man was a bit of a taboo subject within the Adelinde household. Rosie knew that he was in Azkaban for crimes committed in support of Voldemort during the First Wizarding War, but her knowledge of the man hardly extended much further than that. Her father didn't like to talk about him, and so any information she knew came in small anecdotes from her mother, a woman who was hardly known for her inability to be quiet. Additionally, Rosie didn't push the subject too much because she knew that even if she wanted to be an animagus one day, and knew she would, she figured if it was so difficult to accomplish that few wizards ever obtained the status, she would probably have to wait until she had at least been given a wand before she could figure it out.

Now that she was off to Hogwarts, or would be off to Hogwarts shortly at the very least, she figured she could complete whatever process needed by the end of her first year- maybe in the beginning of her second year, if it proved difficult enough. Perhaps she was being a bit too ambitious, but perhaps that was just Rosie. The sight of the illustration of the dog exiting it's loop by shaking its body as if to dispel water brought Rosie from her thoughts, allowing her to focus on the sight in front of her rather than her future ambitions. Had the case belonged to her uncle, was it in memory of him, or something else all together? Rosie didn't know, but she quickly decided that was a thought for another time, and moved her fingers to open the clasps, her eyes widening at the sight in front of her. Inside of the case was a bed of some sort of shiny black fabric, satin perhaps, and lying above it was a single familiar item. It was something she had seen in pictures in her father's study on the hand of her grandmother. It was a silver serpent-like bracelet of sorts meant to cuff the palm, Rosie remembered, her mouth opening a bit as she tentatively reached for it. It was old, Rosie knew from the pictures she had scene, though something told her it was far older than even she could have guessed. Carefully picking it up to inspect it, her first observation was that it was heavier than she expected, as if the thing body of the snake it was shaped as was made entirely of silver. Taking it in both hands, her thumbs ran over the textured scale-like surface of the piece, a small smile finally settling on her lips once more as she inspected it. She loved it, she loved the look of it and the knowledge that it was once her grandmother's, and as her right thumb ran up the body of the snake, passing over the small dark emeralds in place of eyes, she knew instantly that she wanted to wear it as her grandmother did and never take it off. It wasn't as if Rosie was particularly close to her grandmother - she wasn't - but she still adored the thought of it all the same. Besides, she thought it was beautiful, and was confident that it would match her future house. It had to, right? Once her thumb rounded over the snake's head, Rosie was quick in trying to slide it over her left hand, her brows furrowing for just a moment as she realized how huge the bracelet was compared to her palm. It wasn't a problem or disappointment she had to face for very long though, thankfully, as the bracelet seemed to close the length between itself and her hand. The body of the bracelet twisted from it's almost straight appearance to being more curved, like a snake trying to coil it's body, and the space between the tail and the head, while once open, closed to overlap just a bit. It didn't stop coiling until the silver sat snuggly against her skin, and while Rosie was taking a moment to admire it, a sudden voice brought her from out of her thoughts and caused her to look up and around the case.

The sight of the smiling American wizard brought a smile to Rosie's face as well, excited that he had found her and that the two of them would be sitting together. As he began to speak again, Rosie was quick to shut the case on her lap once more as he settled across from her. "Not long at all," Rosie assured him before sliding the case down to the space beside her. Rosie crinkled her nose a bit when asked how finding her sister had went, remember seeing her with the Irish Loser, and was thankful when he continued to speak and discuss his own sister instead. The witch tilted her head a bit to the side as she listened to him speak, admiring his strange American accent as he spoke of his sister having some weird crush or something. She listened intently at first, and then even more so as a familiar voice rang in her ears. Did he just say his sister liked Draco Malfoy? When he went on to apologize, Rosie just shook her head slightly as if to dismiss the apology, still not sure if she had heard that correctly because what were the odds?

"I am," she confirmed. "I'm looking forward to the sorting as well. I'll be with my sister, I think, but otherwise I'm looking forward to it. My family's been in Slytherin since forever, I've been looking forward to the green robes myself for years. Perhaps we'll be in the same house?" Rosie spoke her earlier hopeful thought, her right hand reached down to rub gently against the serpent palm cuff as she eyed Percy. The brunette opened her mouth to ask another question, but was beat to it by an unfamiliar voice. Rosie looked up, brows furrowing at the curly haired boy as she watched him for a moment. At the question, her eyes flickered back to Percy. She had nothing against the boy who had just appeared, nothing at all, but it would take a lie to claim she didn't feel hesitant all the same- and by hesitant, she wanted to groan with frustration and lock a door to keep Dustin out. After all, she had enjoyed spending the little time she had spent with Percy. He was funny and seemed odd and different than anything she had ever before experienced. There was a part of her that instinctively wanted to keep him and whatever amusing conversations they might have all to herself, decidedly away from outside interference. She thought they could be friends, she hoped they could be, and didn't want anything ruining that. Then Percy spoke, and Rosie bit down on her bottom lip.

"I don't mind," she told the curly haired boy as her eyes flickered back over to him, an absolute lie to be certain, but she tried to repress that part of herself. Her eyes lingered on the boy as he came to sit down with the two of them, sitting on the far end of the seat next to Percy. Great, now they were even physically closer. Attempting to ignore her jealous and possessive thoughts, Rosie raised a brow as she saw the look on the boy's face. "Are you alright?"

The boy gave a quick nod as he looked at her. "I'm just...this is all a bit strange, wouldn't you say? I mean, one day I'm receiving a letter from an owl and the next I'm walking through bloody walls. I mean, through walls. Who the bloody hell walks through walls?"

"Wait, that means you're a mud-" her eyes widened a bit as she caught herself from finishing the word that she had heard used so many times before. That wasn't a good one, was it? Nobody wanted to be called a mudblood, even she knew that. It was just a slip of the tongue, something her parents had told her not to say even if she had heard her siblings use it in passing more times than either would be likely to admit to. To use the phrase to describe those without wizarding parents was uncalled for, her father had explained to her once over a game of wizarding chess in his study. It was unbecoming, he had stressed, and it wasn't even as if he was some lover of muggles. He kept his family away from muggles as best as he could, after all- for tradition. Yet even he condemned the use of the phrase, calling it vulgar as well, even if it wasn't perhaps for the sake of the wizards themselves. Appearances were always stressed in the Adelinde household, after all- and not just in the way in which they always dressed smartly either, but in a more social sense. They were a family of high standing, her father held one of the highest positions in the Ministry of Magic, and they were living in the aftermath of the Second Wizarding War. They had stayed out of the war, but her father still held familial ties to the first one what with his brother having inhabited a cell in Azkaban for all of those years, and they were a house of Slytherin with a constant supply of Slytherin children, presumably soon to add one more to the ranks. Appearances were everything for survival, for prospering in such an odd time.

Even besides how much her father would disapprove, she worried how such a name might also be a potential slight against Percy. That was the last thing that she wanted. She wasn't a girl with friends, most people found her strange and they annoyed her, but it already felt different with the entertaining American boy. The last thing she would want to do was insult him, even unwittingly. Was mudblood an insult reserved just for those born of muggles or was it something that was aimed at all those who's blood held magic that didn't originate from a pureblooded family? She didn't know, but would that even matter? While fear of insulting or repelling Percy was at the front of her mind, her most prominent worry that far surpassed that of even appearance in the moment, she also felt a bit odd in calling this nervous looking boy something she knew was less than flattering. "A muggleborn?" Despite how sorry the attempt at covering up her original intended words might have been, it didn't seem as if the boy thought anything of it as he nodded in response. Why would he, after all? How would someone with no magical parents possibly know about such a phrase? "Strange indeed," she murmured awkwardly, though somehow she saw a small smile appear on the muggleborn wizard's lips. Brows furrowing in confusion at the sight, Rosie looked back to Percy. "Sorry, but back to before- did you say your sister fancies Draco Malfoy?" She asked, both desperate to change the subject and unable to get the thought from her mind. "She's set to marry Draco, my sister, did you know? Once she finishes this year; she's in her seventh. I think she's happy about that, she always wanted to snog a death eater and he's Draco Malfoy." As for as husbands went, marrying in to the Malfoy fortune and historic if not current prestige wasn't exactly anything to laugh at. When it came to the fact that she had just mentioned death eaters around the muggleborn, she hadn't noticed, though she would have doubted he would have either given that he apparently hadn't recognized the accidental slur. "Of course, I think she'd fancy snogging someone else too at the moment. I saw her with him just now, an absolute tosser really, but a prefect so we're meant to disregard that. At least, she certainly has," she murmured with a shrug, hoping her former slip up with the whole 'mudblood' thing and her sister's engagement wasn't enough to push Percy away.

User avatar
76heart
Site Admin
Posts: 312
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:19 pm
Location: winterfell

[ϟ] 005

Post by 76heart » Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:24 pm

Image
━━━━━━━━━not a monster━━
Image
━she couldn't love━━━━━━
xxxIt was good to see Draco again, more than good, really. She was very glad that she had run into him once more, that their paths were meant, or fated to cross a second time, and hopefully many more times if he too would be spending the year at the school as she was for whatever reason. She really hoped that he would be, so she would know for certain that she would be seeing him many times again. There was something special about him, something different, yet wonderful about him that she could not put into words no matter how hard she thought about what would fit, and it would be a terrible, horrible, travesty and shame, to meet him once, and then never even so much as catch a glimpse of his handsome light hair again. He held a specialness that she just didn't want to ever lose. It reminded her of something her grandmother had told her when she had still been alive, and when Leona had still been so very young, a time that felt so long ago, and like yesterday, like it had happened just the day before, at the same time. She had said that if she ever happened to meet someone so very special, someone who felt so vastly different from everyone else in the most wondrous ways, who managed to halt her entire world and turn it to only them, to hold onto them as tight as she could and never let go, because she would never, ever find anyone like that again. That had been told to her on the night just before her grandmother had been hospitalized, just a month before she had died. She had repeated them, in a different way on the night she had died, back home in her bed, after the hospital had released her, so she could be allowed to die in the comfort of it's walls, and where her beloved had passed away too. They had been one of the last few things she had ever said, tied to the ones in giving her the necklace, and the promise she had made her make to keep it forever safe. Her grandmother had reiterated the words of before, and had Leona promise her that if she ever met someone who brought color and life to her world, she wouldn't let them slip through her fingers like she almost had with the love of her life, because there was no greater agony than living without one's heart, without the other half to who they were. The words had stuck with her from the moment her grandmother had told them to her, the only difference to them in her mind was that she would not hold someone who wanted to go, because it would be selfish to keep them when they wanted to leave, and love was not a selfish thing. Love was selfless, and shared, reflected equally both ways, not with one overflowing, and the other locked in a cage. That was something she had learned from the love she had seen forever blossoming between her parents, a love that only grew each day, and from the stories she had heard of her grandparents, of a love that transcended all times, and all distances. Both her parents and grandparents had beautiful love stories, and possessed a love that she had always thought were befitting of a fairytale, or a story that ended in, "and they all lived happily ever after." They had found their soulmates, and held on tight, and she could only hope that she would one day find someone to share a love like theirs with. At least now she was old enough to better appreciate the love between her parents, and the way they never ceased to look at each other with such overflowing love that only seemed to increase with each love-laced glance. There was nothing but love in their eyes when they looked to the one who held their heart, and now that she was older, and mature enough to look at it without childish disgust as she used to, and as Percy still did, she could see how truly beautiful it was. An old woman who frequently visited their shop as more than just a regular custom, and instead as a friend, once told her that a love like theirs was rare, and one to cherish and hold close forever, as she had said the love of her grandparents was the very same; rare, and so wonderful. Some relationships could fiddle, or wilt with time, or the spark they started with could begin to fade or go out completely, but that of her parents, and grandparents, only ever seemed to grow. The flame of their candle never wavered or dipped out, it rose and rose, growing dangerously high, until it blossomed into an eternal blaze, a fire that could never be put out. It was a type of love that she could only dream of, and hope to someday find. It was a love that extended to everyone they met, and their children too, though of course, it extended in different ways, and the love was only of a romantic kind, with each other. With friends and strangers it was a kindness, warm welcomes and bright smiles, and with her and Percy, it was undying and fierce, so very proud, and like a blanket of safety and warmth, of a home. That was a kind of love that was rare too, as she had found during her travels, but it was no less beautiful. Someone with an endless amount of love to give was hard to find, let alone two with a love that would never end that had found each other, and made a home, as the previous two generations of her family had, and she was so lucky, and grateful, to be able to witness it, especially when she was young. While her grandmother was still alive, she had been able to see the love she had for her grandfather so clearly in everything she did, even after he was gone and through the void. While some would be consumed by heartbreak after that, she had not been, her heart was pained- Leona had been able to see that too-, but she would not let it break. Her grandparents had made a promise to always love each other, and to always find each other again, a promise, an unbreakable pact, that was concealed within the necklace she now wore around her neck from the very same dangling chain, and her grandmother had never lost faith that they would find each other again, and she hoped that they had found each other again, more than anything. Her parents hadn't made a bloodpact like like that, but she knew their love was no less than theirs had ever been, and she admired their love in a way for that too, and how sure of each other and their love they were, and how much trust they had, that they would still find each other again, no matter the circumstances, even without an eternal promise to hold them to it.
xxxOf course, she had only just met Draco, and he had only just met her, and it wasn't anything like that with him, and she doubted that it ever would be, but there was still something special about him, something undeniable, something grand. She was just overjoyed to see him again. All it was was her allowing her thoughts to get ahead of themselves, that was it.

xxxJust as she noticed the presence of the button on his lap, it seemed as if he had spotted it there as well, if the way his eyebrows when he glanced down after his hand brushed against the object in an attempt to slide forward was any giveaway to that. That only caused her cheeks to heat up more, and she hoped that he didn't notice their very distinct pink as she finished scolding her Bowtruckle before she turned her attention back to him. Their eyes met as she spoke his name in her apology, and he turned his own gaze back to her, and she was reminded again of how unique his eyes were. It wasn't as if she had never seen their color before, no, she had met a few people with stormy eyes of blue tinted gray, it was more that there was something different held within them, some depth only his eyes contained. She had never seen anything like them before, not even on her creatures, and they were very difficult not to get lost in. If it wasn't a terribly odd and uncomfortable thing to do, Leona had a feeling that she could stare into them for hours. Now was most certainly not the time to think about that, however; she had just spoken to him, and he had given a response, to which she responded to with a nod as soon as she had registered what he had asked a moment later, affirming that he had heard her right, and gotten the creature correct. Hollivander seemed rather pleased that he had gotten his species correct, and Leona found herself relieved that he wasn't starting something or finding an issue with the man already. She didn't know about the girl Percy called his new friend- Rosie-, but she knew that Draco was not one she wanted to upset in any way, he was someone that she wanted to get to know more and see often, if he wished the same of her of course, and an angry little green twig creature that resembled an oddly mangled thin branch, was most certainly not a very good way to get into someone's good books, or make them want to see her again. A smirk crossed her features when he spoke again, and she couldn't help but smile at the way Hollivander's expression changed from pleased to terribly aghast within the moment. It was hard not to laugh at the little creature, but he had already been through enough, and she didn't want to hurt his feelings or offend him any more than she already knew she was going to with her reply to the handsome man's very accurate observation. "He's acting more like one too." Leona agreed, glancing at the creature who regarded her with a most displeased glare, clearly more offended at her agreement of his statement than the statement itself. "Yes, Vander, I said it. You have been and are acting like an ass, now calm down, you live in my damned garden for fuck's sake and know I love plants as well. I wouldn't love you any less if you were a twig or a mandrake or anything else." She sounded rather tired as she spoke, which only caused Hollivander to harden his upset glare, and her to partially roll her eyes with a heavy sigh. He managed to look somewhat menacing, but really he just looked more on the side of silly, or a bit adorable. She wanted to comment on that, but she knew that would especially not go well. A creature wanting to seem strong and tough would not be at all amused at being called cute, especially after just being compared to a plant most didn't seem to really love from her experience. Mandrakes weren't the prettiest things, and looked very wrinkled and scrunched or like a very old and unwashed brown sock with deep green things, and the sound they made was even less pretty. Their cries and screams could kill a witch or wizard upon listening to it, and she could remember from her herbology class in her second year, when her class had to repot young mandrakes that had not fully matured while wearing earmuffs that made her skin itch, how horrid their annoying, obnoxious cries were. Nevertheless, she had always carried a fondness for mandrakes, and their more human and or creature qualities, though if she kept one, she risked the lives of her creatures, so it had never been a route she had decided to pursue. As much as she loved plants, and the admittedly grotesque one they were speaking about, she would not risk the lives, health, happiness, or safety of any of her creatures just to have one for her own pleasure. Her beloved creatures would always come first, and that meant avoiding bringing things into the bag that could kill them, like mandrakes, no matter how accurate the comparison of Hollivander to one was, especially with the way he was acting now. Hollivander only seemed to prove that further when he noticed Draco eyeing him for a few moments, before speaking another amended observation after some moments of deliberation. She nodded again, much to the Bowtruckle's dismay. "Either that or it's head, because he has quite a bite of his own." Leona replied to his amendment, giving an agreeing nod again and ignoring the bowtruckle's rather sharp and painful tug at her hair, allowing him no response other than the obvious pained wince she couldn't help that crossed her features as it happened. He really was going to be difficult, wasn't he? She had a feeling he'd be like this, and remain in this foul mood until she did something to fix it as well, and she also had a feeling, that what he would wish of her wouldn't exactly be small. She didn't want to reward him for this, or give him the satisfaction for terrible behaviors, but she also loved him to much to want him to be mad at her for days until she sucked it up and apologized, and he didn't deserve that kind of treatment at all. Once they were in the back she would attempt to make up for it, though she really had no idea how. The only thing she could think of at the moment was to resign to giving him her wand to good for the night, but she was hesitant to let him guard it, in case she needed it on her first night at the school for whatever reason, and he refused to give it up to her without another bribe that may take too long. She knew it would be safe with him however, and that he would guard it with his life, as he had guard the wand wood tree he was from until it had been destroyed by a careless no-maj, and she rescued him from it, and she also knew that if it came down to it, and she did need the wand, that he wouldn't put his grudges before that, so really, it would be fine, and would probably be the best option she had, for the moment at least, or until they were off the train. There really wasn't much she could do regarding getting things while they were within a bag, in a compartment, on a moving train full of magical students, and a man that probably already found her weird enough as it was. For now giving him her wand once he was safely back with her other four Bowtruckles was likely the best option, and once they were there together, she would give it to him for safekeeping, to hold and guard, and defend with his little life.

xxxInstead of answering her question if she could sit with him verbally, he gave a motion of his hand in response to the seat across from him, and invitation to sit, and she felt relief, and something else that she couldn't name, fill her. He was fine with her sitting with him, she would get to spend more time with him, at least as long as the train ride would allow. That meant she wouldn't have to say goodbye again just yet, a thought that filled her again with the feeling she couldn't quite name, that also spread a joyful warmth throughout her form. She was probably happier at that than she should be, but Draco was not a type of person she met every day, or again in her life, and she wasn't sure if she was ready to part with him forever just yet, he was far too special for that. Any moment that allowed her a chance to spend a moment more with him, as long as he wanted the same, was a moment she would happily take, and along with the relief, she would let the happiness she felt at him wordlessly saying she could sit across from him surround her for the moment.
xxxCarefully, she entered the compartment further and sat down upon the seat opposite him, Dewitt sliding off of her shoulder to take a seat by her side now that they were finally sitting down, and he didn't have to cling to her side for safe transport. The Demiguise took to watching Draco curiously, as she turned her attention to see how much damage the moody Bowtruckle had caused to her jacket when he ripped the button off and flung it over onto Draco's lap. Oh, right. The button had landed on him. She swallowed, and tried to turn her focus to the frayed and visible pulled threads on the weird pocket thing on her shoulder, indicating where the button had been, until he spoke again, asking her a question, and she looked up, back into his stormy eyes. "Yes, I did- I am helping Hagrid with his class this year, largely due to the tournament." Leona answered, her voice sounding a bit distracted at first, before she managed to fully tear her attention from the button's current location and focus fully back on him. He was recalling back to what she had said, asking about her saying she was teaching with Hagrid at Hogwarts. He had to have known the friendly half-giant, didn't he? She was correct in remembering that he had been teaching there awhile, likely long enough for Draco to have been in several of his classes? Did Draco like the man, if he had known him? She hoped that he did, though she also had a feeling that it was more likely their relationship hadn't exactly been the best. If she was right in that, she hoped that maybe someday she could help fix it, so that wouldn't ever be an issue if Draco was staying at the school as she was, and they wanted to spend some time together. She was probably getting far too ahead of herself there though, she didn't even know if she would survive this train ride without somehow upsetting him just yet. She hoped she would though, she really hoped she would. He was someone she really enjoyed speaking with, and his presence was an oddly comforting, and soothing one to her. At least it seemed to be going well so far, if his next words were anything to go by. She raised a brow at his tease, saying that he would have guessed arithmancy instead. Arithmancy; it was a variant of numerology, or another branch off of what that was, and quite a bit of numbers divulged from letters, vowels, and sometimes consonants in a name. Numbers. She had never been too fond of them; her father had made sure she knew no-maj teachings of mathematics as well, and god had she hated it. It was just so boring, so plain, and so ridiculous. Unless someone went down a specific career path, no one really needed to know much more than the essentials and basics, not what the hypotwhateverthefuckitwasenuse was or anything like that. There was no creativity, no freedom, nothing stirring and exciting, and certainly nothing gripping to it at all. Arithmancy was quite different to that however, and it was something she personally quite enjoyed, just like she enjoyed talking with Draco, though speaking with him was of course much more enjoyable than any subject she could learn, and far more special. She leaned forward the smallest bit, her eyebrow stilled quirked up at the air. "Arithmancy? And why is that?" Leona asked. Her tone was teasing as well, though more playful than his deadpan one had been. Once she had finished speaking, or more likely, just as it had happened and been timed then, since the movement has began after he had finished his tease, he picked up the button that had landed on his lap, and after a moment of his thumb circling the smooth surface, a movement that drew her gaze curiously, he raised his hand, and offered it back to her. She gently took it back from him then, her fingertips delicately brushing his own as she did so, and placed it safely in her pocket, noticeably far away from the bowtruckle who would likely just manage to fling it again. Of course, the creature could easily climb down her torso and enter the pocket to take it back without her even feeling he had done so, especially now that he was sitting and he could do so without the risk of falling several feet to the ground, but it was unlikely that he would; he was in the mood for attention and affection and someone to bemoan the horrible attacks at him that he had endured thus far today, and he knew that was not the way to get it. He may be rather vain and in a mood at the moment, but he wasn't stupid, and he knew her, and how she would respond to things.

xxxAt his next musing, her expression fell, her thoughts returning to the more unpleasant part of why she would be helping to teach a the school this year. The Triwizard Tournament. She had been in America and roped up in her classes at Ilvermorny when it had happened, but she had still heard of the tragedies that had happened, and she had learned more when looking into it on her own, and when she was speaking with McGonagall about helping Hagrid teach for the year. "I certainly hope they are, it would be a horrible shame for lives to be lost again." Leona agreed, sharing the sentiment of his musing. A boy, Cedric Diggory had died the last time it was held, and it had been meddled with by one of the most evil beings to ever exist, things would not go well if there was a repeat of events from the year before, and they would be lucky if more lives weren't lost. All they could do for now was hope that it didn't happen again, and she so hoped that it would all go without a hitch. If things didn't go well this year, she had a feeling that the tournament would finally be out to rest for good too, and while she personally didn't agree with the first task, or using any creature in such a horrible way for entertainment, she wasn't blind to seeing that it was a good event for the three schools, one that strengthened bonds, and fostered important, and long lasting friendships. Should another like Gellert Grindelwald or Voldemort come again, and mess with the schools, it was also important that the three stood together, and not alone. Allies were important, and there was much greater strength in numbers, and an increased amount of very clever and talented wand wielding students. She focused in on him once more when she heard his lovely accented voice again, though this time, at his words, she found her expression set in a frown. Did his words mean that he was going to be teaching there as well? Or staying there? She bit the inside of her lip for the briefest of moments. "No, I suppose it wouldn't, though I am meant to help with the dragons, last I knew at least." Her brow furrowed thoughtfully a moment, before she returned her attention fully to him again, realizing that she should probably give him an explanation her eyes no longer clouded by deep thoughts. "It was set in place when Dumbledore was still Headmaster that Percy would come here when he was old enough, and what with me taking him here, and after the tragedies of the last, and previous times the tournament was held, I suppose they wanted as much help as they could get, and I was the only one insane enough to offer mine that also has the experience and knowledge necessary." Leona explained after another moment, giving a small shrug as she finished and leaning back a giant the plush backing to her seat. She was a bit hesitant, and worried to see how he would react to that statement, or if he would think of her any differently now that he had heard. Most people didn't exactly have the highest opinion of dragons from what she had so far experienced, and even more within the wizarding community at least, thought they were dangerous monsters. The few times she had told people that she wished to work with them, and had the qualifications too, it hadn't exactly gone the best. The first time she had, it had interlaced with her aunt and uncle's first interdiction to magic, which had gone even worse. She had just come home from a trip, the one where she had been helping out with creatures, and had taken care if a baby dragon for a little while, and she hadn't noticed her aunt and uncle were visiting as she stepped into the living room with Dewitt and started framing about the creatures she had met to her parents and younger brother. Then she had heard a loud thump, and turned to see her aunt fainted on the floor, and her normally very carefree and relaxed uncle looking horrified. A lot of shouting had followed, and then both her aunt and uncle being obliviated by her very tired looking mother. She had nearly made that same mistake again while having dinner with them, and exclaiming that she wished to work with dragons, after being asked what she would like to do for work, because as far as they knew, her "job" was traveling around and volunteering at animal sanctuaries, or just working with different creatures across the globe. Of course, when they looked surprised and very concerned at that, Percy hadn't helped things, and had decided to take it upon himself to explain to them that she already worked with a lot of creatures, and had a Snallygaster, so a dragon wouldn't be much different, and after seeing the looks her parents shared with each other, they had known it was true. There was shouting again, some running, and her aunt nearly falling down the stairs while screaming they were all insane. Her mother obliviated them again, and she had been much more careful with them ever since, as had Percy. The next few times she had expressed it to others outside her family, she had just been met with looks that told her they thought she was absolutely insane, or crazy, which, admittedly wasn't a new thing or something she wasn't used to, but she didn't want Draco to look at her that way, or see her as this mentally insane freak who was out of her mind as some had. She probably was a bit out of her mind for adoring the beasts, and wanting to some day care for one of her own before setting it free to live with it's brethren, because she truly believed the dragons should be as free as they could safely be, but she didn't want to lose a possible friend, someone who she was already beginning to care about more than she probably should, over that just yet. Draco was different, and special, and she didn't want him to stop speaking with her so soon because he thought she was utterly insane for wanting to work with one of the, if not the most dangerous magical creature there was.

xxxAfter a few more moments passed between them, her eyes suddenly lit up with a memory, a memory of what she had been meaning to do since she left home, and what she should have done the moment she sat across from it. She needed to put Dewitt and Hollivander away, so they would be safe and settled inside the bag by the time they arrived, and would not be forced to deal with the stresses of settling in and arriving once they reached their destination of the school. Immediately, she shifted, motioning for Dewitt to climb back on her shoulder, and slid the bag down from her shoulder and to floor between the two seat's of the compartment. Hollivander began to make his protests at her sudden movements known, but before he could do more than begin to yank at a free strand of her hair, he was interrupted by her words, and now had a whole new string of protests to declare. "Oh! If you'll excuse me a moment, I should probably go and put these two away before this one," Leona paused, picking up Hollivander from her shoulder and holding him out with a rather unamused smile as he unceremoniously flailed before setting him carefully on Dewitt's shoulder and continuing. "gets in even nastier mood and gouges out someone's eyes, likely mine." Leona sent Draco another smile, one that was a bit more genuine, and then took to murmuring the password and opening the bag where it sat on the floor in front of her. Normally she would never speak the password in front of someone she barely knew, but she trusted Draco, and a part of her knew that he would never mean her, the book bag, or her creatures any harm. The book bag opened at her words, with her feet on either side, and once she was sure no creature would come bursting out excitedly, she put her foot in, and allowed the heel of her boot to catch on the step ladder and push it down, so she could safely get inside. She took a moment to get a good footing, and make sure the foot inside the bag was steady and firm on the first rung, before standing carefully, and lowering her other foot in, and beginning the climb down into the back. She hoped that Draco would be okay with this, and not find it terribly abhorrent or rude, and hate her whenever she came back up. It was probably too late to worry about that though, she had already done it, and that was not an action she could take back. Not even before she was fully inside, she was converged on by the two tiny golden birds who had wished for her love earlier, and she had to gently shoo them away with a hand until she reached the end the of the step ladder and was safely on the ground, so they wouldn't cause her to become off balance and fall off while she carried a very delicate and fragile creature with her. As soon as she stopped waving them away with her hand though, they instantly returned to her side, and nuzzled against the side of her face, where she raised a hand to hold them close, a large smile encompassing her features at the sound of their happy chirps, and the softness of their feathers against her cheek. "Widget, Gidget, my darlings, yes, I'm so glad to finally be with you as well." Leona cooed, laughter mixed with her words. Dewitt climbed off of her shoulder then, and Hollivander made his way down her free arm, only to emit a sound of surprise when it suddenly moved again, to grip back onto the ladder as she started to climb back up. She had realized that she hadn't even thought to invite Draco in, and her heart had sank at that. That was so rude of her, and he deserved nothing but kindness from her. She wanted to spend time with him too, how had she forgotten to offer him the chance to spend time with her this way? To see a world she held most dear? The creatures and the world within her bag weren't something she wished to show to just anybody, but it was something she wanted to share with him, and she felt awful for not offering it from the start. She emerged from the bag again then, popping back up from it suddenly, only her head and shoulders poking out, her cheeks a bright red and her expression apologetic. She probably looked rather odd to him, poking her head back out out of nowhere, with two new creatures that Draco hadn't yet seen upon her head, already comfortably nestled within her hair. One had made himself comfortable on the top of her head towards the right, and the other had found herself a comfy spot below her left ear, resting atop the hair thaws was over her shoulder and next to her neck. Gidget's small feathers tickled her skin, and her long, very thin and narrow beak, ever so slightly poked at her chin when the small creature looked around, or when either moved their head. He would see that Dewitt was no longer with her, as he had already climbed off and was presently waiting at the door of the hut inside, but Hollivander remained with her still, standing on the back of her hand and pulling at the sleeve of her jacket with a mixture of curiosity and impatience. The new creatures accompanying the still moody Bowtruckle on her person, were her pair of Golden Snidgets, still contentedly in their newly made nests in her hair, which they had made after moving from her face when she began her climb, though one was noticeably unsettled after seeing what the world was around him. Widget immediately fluffed up his shimmering feathers at the sight of the man that greeted them when she poked her head back out if the bag, almost trying to appear possessive of the young woman who's head he sat upon. If he was trying to look menacing and frightful to Draco however, she already knew he was failing miserably at it; he was no larger than a walnut, and when fluffed up like a perturbed and hissing cat, he looked more curt and adorable than anything else. It was quite endearing, really. He was just a tiny puffball that appeared nothing but harmless. Thankfully, by the time she had managed to get the words out to speak, Widget, from atop her head, gave a ruffle of his feathers as he settled back down from fluffing himself up after spotting the man before them, settling down with a heavy breath she could just barely feel. Her face filled with an apology again, and she looked up at the handsome man with hopefully eyes. "Ah, I'm so sorry, I forgot to ask, would you like to come in as well? I promise it's safe, and very spacious, if you'd like to be more alone. My creature's are inside, and I can't promise they'll not curiously say hello, but I do hope you'll come and see." Leona offered softly, her eyes remaining on his as she spoke. She knew that it was a very odd offer, likely one that could be a bit concerning to some, but she did truly hope that he would accept it, and join her inside. She was eager to show him her world, and introduce him to the creatures that she had dedicated her life to learning about and caring for. He was just so special, so special in a way she wasn't sure if she could ever describe, and she wanted to show him everything that she could. She searched his face for a sign of his response, and bit her lip while she waited for it to come, the seconds feeling far too long.

Image
━mischievous and brave━━
Image
━━━━━━━and  quidditch━━━
xxxWith all of the new things that were happening, and that would happen with him going to Hogwarts, he was glad that he had a friend to go through it with, and that he wouldn't be going it alone. He had his sister obviously, but she was going to be a teacher there, and didn't exactly count as someone who would always readily be there and available for him when she had a bag of creatures and a class full of students to attend to. Rosie was going to be there in a way no different to him though, and they would get to experience classes together, and magic side by side, and he'd have a friend in her so he wouldn't just be on his own with it all, and he hated being on his own. Being alone was never something he had ever enjoyed, or been good at dealing with. He didn't even like being alone in his room when he went to sleep, he felt comforted knowing that someone else was there, though of course he had grown out of needing one of his parents or sister to stay with him a little while after reading him to sleep, or telling him a story before he went to bed, awhile ago. He was going to Hogwarts now, a school away from home and across the sea; he was too old for that now, he could go to sleep all by himself, and besides, now he had Godric, so he wasn't really alone anyways. He always had his new owl friend to watch over him from the luxurious perch in the far corner of his room, so he felt safe enough, and not really alone. It was a bit embarrassing though, if he was honest with himself, to admit that he was a bit scared of being alone and loathed the feeling above all else. When he was little he used to get really terrible nightmares when his parents didn't stay with him a bit after reading, and Dewitt had to be the one to go and wake them up, because he had been too scared of the looming shadows in the darkness of his room to go and get them himself. He wasn't scared of the darkness, and more of the shadows that seemed to imitate and mimic the horrible monsters with gaping jaws he had seen in his dreams, with a startling accuracy and resemblance. His imagination always seemed to have a way of warping the shadows in his fearful nights as a younger child to look like the terrors in his head, which he very much did not appreciate. At least he could say he wasn't afraid of the dark, and had never needed a nightlight; he had always found it hard to go to sleep if there was a light on, and the darkness felt cool, and dangerous in a way, and he liked that. It was mysterious, and unknown, and he found that to be really cool. It was something he had on Leona too, she had apparently been really scared of the shadows and the dark when she was a lot younger, so much so that their grandmother had needed to cast a spell that made it look like there were moving stars on her bedroom ceiling, so she wouldn't be scared of the dark, because above her there was nothing but beautiful stars, and she had always enjoyed looking out over the clear sky when the city lights were dim enough to show the stars. He had seen her casting the spell a few times since, with her door almost completely closed and the lights off late at night, but now he had a feeling the reasons were more for nostalgia, and missing the grandparent she had been so very close to, than an actual fear of the darkness. In fact, she seemed quite at home in the dark, in it's silence, and how lonely and cold it could feel, a feeling she seemed to enjoy more than just sometimes, when she returned home from her trips. She always seemed drained and worn out from her travels and meeting so many people, and she always asked to be alone for awhile after her initial greetings upon return. That had always been incredibly weird to him. He had never really understood how his sister was so okay with being alone, or why she seemed to prefer solitude with her creatures to the company of other people, though. That still baffled him. He knew she wasn't a people person or exactly the best at socializing, but that seemed different to the way she always seemed to prefer her own company, or that of just one or two close friends, to bring surrounded by friends as he always had. Being alone was stifling, it was stuffy and had him bored. How was she able to love it so much? Was being with a bunch of people as draining for her as being alone was for him, or was it something different? Did she get scared when she was around too many people or something? No, that didn't seem like her at all, so what was it? How could his sister manage to be so opposite from him, and their mother in that regard? She was a lot more like their father, who was quiet and reserved and tended to keep to himself and his studies, and the family car Persnickety when she payed his office a visit, but Leona preferred to surround herself with creatures, which were very living things, so didn't make that different? How could she want to be alone, but then just go right to her array of magical beasts? Winks and Dewitt he could understand, she had grown up with them, and they seemed to be her closest companions and friends, but the rest? Would they just count as people? What was the difference between animals and people? Why would she consider it being alone while she was with them, but not another person? That baffled him too, bamboozled him even. He liked that word, bamboozled, his uncle had used it once. He had heard his mother mention to his father how Leona was an introvert once, and that he was an extrovert, but he had no idea what that meant. Was that the meaning of what this was? Was an introvert someone who prefereed to be alone like his big sister? Was an extrovert someone like him who would much rather have a large circle of friends to spend time with than to be alone? Or were they something different entirely? He had absolutely no idea. He supposed that he'd probably have to ask his sister when he saw her again, and hope that she knew the answer, because now the nagging question was probably never going to leave his mind until he had gotten it answered. Things didn't really like to leave his mind until he got them out somehow, and he definitely didn't appreciate that a lot of the time. It seemed as if the nagging, irritating things, like a stupid song would just stick in his head forever until he screamed them to someone else, and the important things that he needed would just slip out of his mind and go away and then never return until after they were needed and he had already payed the price for very stupidly forgetting. That probably meant he should get in the habit of writing things down, sort of like his sister often did with her book of creatures whenever she observed something new about them, but he knew that he wouldn't be able to stick to that; it wasn't interesting enough for him to continuously put his mind to, and he would already be doing enough of jotting things down with his class notes. His sister had always had mountains of them, and his dad had even larger mountains and piles of research notes, and while he definitely wasn't an intellectual, wisdom driven, knowledge seeking being like they were, he really wanted to do well in his classes, and he knew that would mean being a good boy and paying attention in class and taking lots, and lots of notes so he never forgot a thing and passed his exams with flying colors. Of course, he knew he probably wouldn't be able to stick to that either, he could already see it become boring real fast, and his mind return to the fun of pranks and games and jokes and tricks. Those would be far more fun and interesting, and admittedly, he was looking forward to getting to do them in a school of magic that called a castle it's home than a lot of other things he knew he had to look forward to too.

xxxWhen he entered the compartment, he noticed that she had been peering into the case she had had with her when he had last seen her earlier at the shop, before she quickly shut it once aware of his presence. Percy wanted to ask what was in it, but he knew that would probably be inappropriate and rude. He frowned, but it only dampened his excitement of seeing her for a moment, and his thoughts were quickly distracted and pulled away the shining object he saw on her hand, that had certainly not been there before; he would have noticed, he was certain he would have. It was a piece of jewelry. A thin, silver snake with intricate textured scales coiled around her hand to cuff her palm, which fit her perfectly. It was a bit wiggly in shape too, like a winding, slithering snake, and it's head and tail overlapped, past perfectly parallel to each other, though they did not touch. It was delicate, graceful, and suiting to her. Really pretty on her too. Yeah, she definitely hadn't been wearing it before. He absolutely would have noticed something as lovely and outstanding as that. Percy knew that he could be pretty unobservant and very blind at times, as many people had told him before, including a very frustrated sister when he still didn't get what she was trying to tell him for the ten millionth time, but he wasn't that uselessly oblivious to things like that, and even if he was, he was still sure that that piece of jewelry would have been something he noticed and caught sight of. It stuck out in a rather elegant way, if that made any sense, something subtle, yet screaming for attention all the same. It was small and delicate enough to be missed on the first glance, but bold and eye-catching enough to be caught and honed in on on the second, while also capable of being what someone noticed about her first. He wanted to say it was like one of the things in fantastical treasure hunting stories that would be hidden in plain sight, and the key to everything, but it still felt far too special for that. It was probably magical too, and a magical item probably wouldn't exactly be the smartest thing to use as a clue, especially one so vastly important. Wasn't there a way of deterring magical things? It wasn't being used for that though, so he really wasn't sure why his mind had decided to go down that train of thought. Her new hand bracelet, was really just a beautiful new thing, and she was really lucky to have it, in his eyes at least. It suited her super, super well too, as he had already very immediately observed. It also looked quite expensive, or at least, not something most people would be able to afford. Did that mean she come from a family that was really well off? His family didn't exactly live a life of luxury, but they weren't anywhere near poor either. They had a lot more than one would expect, though most of it was old money, a wealth made generations ago. His family probably could by a more modest mansion and keep it well if they wanted to, but that wasn't what his family was; they used to be the type to show off their wealth with the most beautiful home they could possibly have, like most old pureblood families, but when they had come to the Americas at the first words upon the wind whispering of Ilvermorny, that had all changed. They had gone from frivolities and extravagance to a life of more simple things, with not a great deal more than the necessities. They had picked up a more modest, humble, and homely life, one that didn't scream their wealth and name, and he liked it. He knew he would have hated growing up in some stuffy formal home, he much preferred what his family had, something on the smaller side, a bit rustic and old fashioned with a lot of wood and bricks, and something that was cozy and warm with colors that made him feel happy, like orange and yellow and green. He knew his family still owned their old ancestral home, somewhere back in the United Kingdoms, in either France or Britain, but it had been abandoned for a couple centuries, and was probably nothing but cobwebs and dust by now, and old rusted gates, surrounded by a field of unkept and wild weeds, creeping up the old cobble walls and between the heavy, ancient stones. The two homes did share one thing in common though; a dumbwaiter. He knew that Leona thought he hadn't discovered it yet, but he had, a long time ago while she was still in school, and now he was jsut waiting to see how long it would take for her to realize that he had, just as he knew that she was waiting to see how long it would be until he finally found it. It was one of his favorite parts of their townhouse shop, and he wouldn't trade it for anything. Was Rosie from that walk of life though? Was she from one of the old pureblood families with well kept, very opulent homes? Even though it wasn't the life for him, if she was, that would be pretty cool and he hoped that he would tell her all about it. It seemed like a suiting lifestyle for her too, one that he was now curious to see her wrapped in, if she of course was willing to share that part of her life with him, and he so hoped that she was. He wanted to know absolutely everything about her that he possibly could. If he was going to be her friend, he wanted to know everything about her, so she could then become his best and closest friend, and they could journey through their years at school with a promise to do so together, and to stay friends until the end. Percy was probably, very definitely getting way, way too ahead of himself there, but he didn't really care; he was too excited at the idea and prospect of her being his friend.
xxxStill, he couldn't help but wonder what had been in the case when he thought more on what he had first seen, and why she had shut it from him so swiftly, though he didn't get much time to ponder on that, thankfully, as he began to talk, and words poured out of his mouth excitedly, distracting him from the tiny bit of curious hurt he had.

xxxRelief filled him as he caught the smile upon her cheeks, and her assurance that she hadn't been there long after, and he found himself growing an even larger smile as he plopped down across from her. "Good." Percy nodded, the motion somewhat affirming, though even he wasn't really sure what it was meant to be, he was too focused on his happiness at seeing her again and getting to sit with her, and the way he bounced slightly on the seat, to really determine what that nod was. The seats felt cool, and kind of hard yet very springy and bouncy too, but he could think about that later; Rosie was far more important than some dumb, vaguely fun and entertaining seat. He watched- probably a bit too intently- as she slid the case down beside her, curiosity sparking within him again, before he forced it back down. Some questions managed to force their way out into the forefront of his mind anyway, though. What was in that case though, and why didn't she want him to see it? Was it even him she was trying to hide it from, or was it the others on the train? If it was the others, then why had she had it open before? Did she not trust him or something? Had he managed to upset her somehow? If he had a case with special, precious things inside, he would trust her to see what it's contents were within it, but that was him, and not her. Was she more like Leona with that? His sister rarely ever showed anyone what was within the bag she always carried; the only reason it hadn't taken him a couple years to convince her to let him to see in was because he was her pesky and proudly annoying little brother. She didn't show it to anybody who wasn't close, and very trusted family and friends. He had only learned the password to it a few days ago, purely in case some emergency came up and he needed it while they were at the school. His sister was so protective of that back and her creatures within, and so very careful and mindful of them all, was that closer to what Rosie would like? Was she just not as readily open as he was, like Leona? Or maybe she just had something she wasn't supposed to have in there. If that was it. She didn't have to worry about him with that. If anything, it would just make him respect and admire and like her even more, and have him even more eager to be her friend, because that meant they could get into trouble together, but he also doubted that that was it. At least the way her nose gave a faint crinkle as he asked how finding her sister had gone, and the way his head tilted as he began to ramble about his own, distracted him from thoughts that were so clearly eager to consume him. There his mind went again, hyper focusing on the nagging questions he didn't actually need. He was glad Rosie was listening intently to him however, that meant a lot, and he was really happy to see that she genuinely cared about what he was saying. A lot of people only half listened to his word vomit, and he was grateful that she listened to it in full. It just made him like her even more than he already did, and it made him even happier that he was able to sit with her too. When she shook her head at his apology at talking too much about his sister and her probable crush though, his stomach sank, and he started to worry that he had done something to upset her. It was probably just her dismissing it, and saying it was alright, but he still worried, because he didn't want to do anything to displease her or chase her away. He wanted to spend time with her, and get to know her as much as he could, and he couldn't do that if she hated him because he had gone on too much about things or said something she just really didn't like, that turned out to be a deal breaker on her end.
xxxIt seemed he hadn't managed to upset her thankfully, not yet at least, because when he continued, she responded to his very excited next questions, quickly confirming that she was excited for it too. He was really glad that he wasn't the only one to be looking forward to it all, and of course that he hadn't chased her away with that either. He was still really relived about that, and even happier to be talking with her still. She was different to anyone he had bed met before, and talking with her was really fun. She seemed to genuinely care, and show interest in him and his words, and that was something he found to be rather rare outside of his family.
xxxHe tilted his head as Rosie continued, a bit perplexed by a few of her words. She thought she would be with her sister, but that she would enjoy it otherwise? What did that mean? Did that mean she not have a good relationship with her sister, did they not get along? Did she not like her? Or was it something else? If she didn't like her sister, then she was more than welcome to be with him instead during the ceremony, though he also had a feeling that wasn't quite what she meant. He was very intrigued to hear that her family had been in Slytherin forever though, and that she had been looking forward to the green robes for years, as he had with Gryffindor's red, so he decided to focus on that instead. That was really cool that her family was from just one house like his, even if it was the one he had heard called the enemy of the one he really hoped to be in a few times. His expression lit up as she continued however, and he gave an enthusiastic nod. He definitely shared that sentiment, and had had that thought earlier too; he really hoped that they would end up in the same house as well. He wanted to spend as much time with her as he possibly could. "Maybe! I really hope we are. I'm hoping to be in Gryffindor, it's what my family was always in when we went here, and I really like red." Percy told her, confessing that he wished the same, and watching as her right hand reached down to run the serpentine palm cuff on her other hand, while she seemed to eye him. He still really liked that jewelry piece on her, a lot. "I wouldn't mind being in Slytherin, if it meant I could be with you more, though."Percy added, shyly admitting the words with his head angled down and eyes fallen to his lap until he slowly, hopefully looked up. Unfortunately, but also fortunately in the way they might gain a new friend, it was then that they were interrupted, and his heart sort of fell.

xxxPercy noticed the way her brows furrowed at the unfamiliar voice, and the way her eyes flickered back to him at the boy's question, meeting his own for just a moment. He had imagined that he would be spending the train ride alone with just her, after that had changed from being stuck with his older sister, and he still wanted it to be just them, but he also didn't want to turn away the boy, who looked as if he could use a friend. No one should have to go without a friend unless they chose to, though he was beginning to doubt that his response to the boy asking if he could join and sit with them had been the right one, when he saw the way she bit down on her bottom lip at his words. Had he upset her? Had she wanted him to say something different? Would she be mad at him? Was she already mad? Had he just messed things up? He held his breath a moment, without even realizing that he was, and then released it in relief when she spoke again. She had responded, answering the curly haired boy's question, and his own, by saying that she was okay with it too, and didn't mind of he sat with them, and Percy couldn't help but give a frown. That didn't sound quite right, there was something different to it, something lacking. It sounded different from everything else she had said before. She was lying wasn't she? But why? The boy seemed nice enough, but did she not see him that way? Did he give her different feelings and vibes? He watched as her eyes lingered in the new boy as he came to sit with them, sitting on the far end of the same seat he was, and he noticed that something seemed to be repressed within her eyes. He looked to her again then more fully this time, scrutinizing her expression with a scrunched up nose. She was definitely lying. It was too different to how she had been earlier with him for it to be a truth. Why was she lying though? Did she not want company? Did she want them to be alone? Percy watched her raise a brow and ask if the boy was alright, probably after she saw the look on his face that he had only half noticed, but with his current suspicions and new worries, he wasn't entirely sure if he meant it. The newcomer gave a quick not in response, and his attention turned to the other boy next to him, though his attention was only half there. He confessed, or more exclaimed, that it was all strange, and how he had received a letter from and owl- was that how people were accepted into Hogwarts here? If it was, he hadn't gotten one, and ocean was likely too far for an owl, he had just gotten one through the mail- one day, and the next he was walking through walls, asking who did that sort of thing. "Wizards, apparently." His face scrunched up thoughtfully, a frown coming upon his features. His tone had been rather flat, and admittedly a bit grumbly, despite the fact he absolutely agreed with it being bonkers that they walked through walls. His attention sharply turned to Rosie again as her accented voice reached his ears, but what she said caught him off guard for a moment, and caused his eyes to widen for a fraction of a second. Mud? Did she mean mudblood? The term that meant dirty blood, an awful name for those- witches and wizards- who weren't born into pureblooded wizarding families. He had only ever heard it once before, when his mother explained to him what it meant and that he was not to say it, after he had caught her on the phone with a very upset and crying Leona because someone had used it during one of her travels and it had struck her deeply, not because she was a half-blood, but because her brother was one too, and her father was a no-maj, and she wasn't going to stand for someone saying something so terrible against them. The wizards in America didn't really ever say it, or care about blood purity as much as they seemed to here, after all, their school, Ilvermorny, had been co-founded by a no-maj. It had also been founded by a descendent of Salazar Slytherin, one of the biggest blood purists he had ever heard of, and he found that to be incredibly amusingly ironic. The woman had married the man too, who was named James. James. He used to know a James, he had been a right big asshole, or, git as Leona said they would have called him here. The name was a common one, but he had only ever met the one, and it had soured the name for him forever. That was beside the point though. If she had begun to say that though, did that mean that she was from one of the families that still carried those narrow-minded views? Did that mean she carried them? Or was she just repeating what she had heard, without the malice filled intent behind it? She had stopped herself before finishing, with eyes widening in what looked to him as surprise, so did that meant she had caught herself, and didn't mean to say it, or the meaning behind it? He hoped that was the case, he really did. That wouldn't change his desire to be friends with her if it wasn't the case, but he had a fear that it would dampen things a bit, and he didn't want that to happen at all. She was too wonderful and special for him to ever want that. She corrected herself quickly, by finishing with asking if he was a muggleborn, but it didn't seek as of the boy with curled hair noticed; he just gave a nod. Percy watched him for a moment then, suddenly realizing for the first time how odd and strange, yet magnificent it just be all at the same time for someone to discover they had magic for the very first time who had never even thought it a possibility before. It had to be so unusual for him, to one day be a normal kid, and then pulled into a world of magic and wands and witches and wizards and odd creatures of all sorts the very next. He wished he could feel and see what that was like, but at the same time, he would never trade being born into that world for anything in any of the worlds; growing up into it filled him with a sense of wonder and adventure that he would never have had otherwise, and he wouldn't have grown up on stories of his grandfather turning into a dog, and his sister traveling the world to befriend all sorts of creatures that no-maj could only begin to imagine.
xxxHe just barely heard the rather awkward murmur Rosie gave in response, and only managed to see the boy give a small smile in reply to that, before he heard Rosie's voice again, and his attention turned sharply back to her. She had asked him if he had said that his sister fancied Draco Malfoy, which he had. He was happy that she had remembered, and didn't seem to be too upset by it, and gave a quick nod in reply. "Mhm!" Percy felt a little bad about practically ignoring the boy next to him, but he didn't want Rosie to feel left out, or like he wasn't going to care about her now that they had a new friend in the compartment with them. There was plenty of time to make friends with him later, he told himself, he could give Rosie these few more moments of his focus purely being on her. She continued quickly, and he shook his head at her words, with a frown setting on to his features. Her sister was set to marry the man once she finished he seventh year? He definitely hadn't known that at all, and he could almost picture the way Leona's face would fall when she heard that. She had denied it, but he could see that there was something there for him already, and hearing that he was already betrothed to marry a girl would probably crush her, like Prince Caspian marrying the star lady had, which she had also swiftly denied each time he mentioned it. His attention was pulled from that quickly though, to what else she had said, after that. Snog? He had heard his sister say that before, while talking with her friend Kat. It meant kiss right? People certainly had a really weird slang for kissing here. It was kind of a really ugly word too, if he had any say about it. He wrinkled his nose. Snog. Ew. Death eater though, why would her sister specifically want to kiss a death eater? He didn't understand. He didn't know much about death eaters, but he knew they weren't exactly good. Except for Draco, he played Quidditch, and his sister liked him, and she normally had a really good judge of character, so he had to be okay. Older girls were weird, though. He hoped that Rosie wouldn't ever be like that. He wasn't sure he'd enjoy hearing about all the probably icky people she wanted to kiss, or well snog. He still really didn't like the sound of the word. "Oh. I really don't think my sister will be happy about it like yours is then. She really had this far away dreamy look, like in the movies, and I think that means she really likes him. It was really girly and gross." Percy wrinkled his nose again, only having a few moments to focus on the words before she continued again, and he found his interest quite peaked. Tosser? What? Was that their word for asshole here, or something ruder he didn't even dare think? Whatever it meant though, she finished the murmured words with a shrug, and he leaned forward, a bit of mischief sprinkling into his gaze. If the guy her sister currently wanted to make out with was a butt, why should him being a prefect stop them from doing that? If anything, that gave them more reason to try and knock him down a few pegs. "Why should that mean we disregard that? If he's a tosser we should prank him or something. My cousin used to be one, if I have the meaning right, and I used to set up a prank to put a bucket of water on his head when he stayed over. My mom yelled at me for it, but I kept doing it anyway." Percy leaned back again, with a bit of a shrug, his eyes only proceeding to grow more mischievous and playful, if not a bit wicked at the idea of such a grand first prank. "Maybe we should do something like that to him? You have buckets here don't you? We could fill one with something gross and have it fall on him. We'd have to make sure it didn't get dumped on anyone though, which might complicate things a bit. I know we could pull it off if off, or whatever else you thought would work, if we tried through. I'm somewhat of an expert in that field, and that's without a wand." Percy proposed, offering her a grin. Perhaps they could start with smaller, fairly harmless things, and then work their way up gradually to something noticeable, and much larger? Or would it be better to immediately hit him with the Big Bang, and then ease him into it again, before stopping, and waiting until he felt safe? Whatever way they went about it, if she agreed, he knew it was going to be good, and hopefully epic too.

Post Reply