Author Topic:  [BoT 2005] some nights {open}  (Read 252 times)

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92 Posts 70 she/her played by Hogwarts Admin
[BoT 2005] some nights {open}
« on: January 20, 2024, 09:25:46 PM »
Thursday, 1st September 2005
man, you wouldn't believe the most amazing things
that can come from some terrible nights

Most days, Minerva hardly felt her age – but, at least once every year, she was reminded of it. Somehow, each new batch of First Years seemed to be younger and smaller than the ones before. And, after the events of the past few months, her maternal concern for her students’ well-being was heightened once again.
As the Sorting Ceremony concluded, Minerva rose from her place at the staff table and made her way to the familiar owl lectern waiting at the center of the dais.

“Good evening,” she greeted; within a few seconds silence had fallen. “Welcome back, and welcome to our newest additions. I trust that everyone is well-rested from a summer away and ready for another year of learning.”

A few of the bright-eyed First Years nodded enthusiastically, and Minerva felt the corner of her mouth turn up slightly with approval. She gestured towards the staff table behind her
“As some of you may have noticed, we have a few changes to the faculty this term.”

Predictably, a ripple of unease seemed to pass through the student body; most seemed to respect her enough not to start talking outright, but she could hardly blame them. She’d start with the less ominous news first, then.

“Please welcome Professor Evander Murray, who will be taking up the Muggle Studies post. From what I understand, he has exciting – if a bit unconventional – plans for the curriculum.”
She gave the Ravenclaw alumnus a small smile as he waved awkwardly from the staff table; he’d been a good student, albeit a quirky one, and she’d had no doubt he’d be an excellent fit for the position. It was why she’d owled him, after all. Hopefully he would also serve as a helpful point-of-contact for those witches and wizards who were curious about becoming more involved in the Muggle world.

Once the smattering of polite applause for Evander had subsided, Minerva took a breath. A weight settled in her chest.

“Now, for those of you who have not heard by now: the former Potions Mistress known as Rachel Twylan” – she spoke the name with obvious distaste – “has been confirmed to have been operating under an alias… as well as ancient magic. Her true name is Cameryn White, and she has been responsible for various breaches of the Statute of Secrecy – among other more violent crimes – that you may have heard about over the past year. As of this summer, she has fortunately since been apprehended and imprisoned.”

The Scottish witch gripped the edges of the lectern then, as many Headmasters and Headmistresses before her had once done; who, too, undoubtedly had to deliver difficult news from this very spot. Certainly, Albus had not been without faults or errors; he had, after all, hired Quirrell-plus-Voldemort, the conniving fool Lockhart, a Death Eater impersonating an Auror… But he’d had no way of knowing when he’d hired them, of course, and neither had she when she’d hired none other than the bloody Dark Widow. Logically, Minerva knew this. But emotionally – she was personally responsible for her students’ safety, especially in her role as Headmistress.

“I regret that such a witch managed to make her way into our home, though am relieved that none within our walls have come to harm. My greatest priority is the safety and well-being of the denizens of Hogwarts. We have had numerous faculty meetings over the holidays to review the hiring process and make changes to ensure this does not happen again.”

Minerva had sent letters to every family that stated as much when the news first broke, but still felt compelled to address it in-person as well. She owed it to her students. Minerva was a proud witch, but she had come to learn that owning up to a mistake frequently had more favorable outcomes than skirting the topic altogether. (She couldn’t recall Albus ever making such formal apologies; then, again, he’d had much greater renown than she when he had taken up the mantle as Headmaster.)

What she did not disclose was that she had received a letter from the two-faced witch – who had the audacity to request to continue to instruct students! She was certifiably mad, there was no question.
Appalled and irate, Minerva had nearly chucked the letter straight into the hearth. But, after a modicum of thought, she’d deigned to send a curt reply if only to make her position irrefutably clear: a flat and unapologetic rejection. She could easily have gone on with paragraphs of admonishment and expressed disgust at the Widow’s deplorable actions (framing an innocent student for Azkaban for a centuries-old blood feud and murdering his family, to start!), but the cool and logical part of her brain – undoubtedly the component of Ravenclaw that had caused her Hatstall – urged her to keep it concise and unemotive.
Never mind that it meant she’d needed to conduct quite a few last-minute interviews to fill the Potions Master/Mistress vacancy… Minerva never shied away from the ‘right’ path, even if it meant more work (and a headache).

Having given the students a moment to consider, she continued.
“I would like to remind each and every one of you that I am always available to hear your concerns, as are your Heads of House and your Prefects.”
It had been difficult for her to give up her position as Head of House when she assumed the Headmistress role, if only because she was now a step further removed from the day-to-day goings-on of her students. She did not want to feel unapproachable simply because she was Headmistress, albeit with more responsibilities.

“I trust that you all will give your warmest welcome to our new students and faculty. Before we dig in, I have a few reminders from Mr. Filch, as usual…”

Once she had read out the Caretaker’s usual list of banned items (which undoubtedly increased in count every year) she bade everyone a restful evening, clapped her hands twice – and the House Elves, once again, delivered a delectable feast. Returning to the staff table, Minerva let out a quiet sigh as the usual dinner chatter picked up throughout the Hall. She could only hope for a blissfully-uneventful term.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2024, 09:27:56 PM by Olivia »

90 Posts 17 she/her played by Carys
Re: [BoT 2005] some nights {open}
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2024, 02:18:32 PM »
Somehow she was back at Hogwarts! Pixie still couldn't quite believe that she'd passed enough OWLs to be here, even though she'd been celebrating since she'd received her results weeks earlier. Tomorrow she was going to have to make the final decision on which subject she would be continuing with (and attempting to persuade one of her professors that she should be allowed to continue with their subject despite her less than brilliant grade), but for now she as going to relax and enjoy herself.

Pixie snorted with amusement when a newly sorted little boy nodded excitedly. Six year ago she'd been similarly enthusiastic, but her excitement was for exploration, not studying. Of course, things had changed a bit since then...she actually liked a handful of subjects, and now she knew the reason for her difficulties it was easier to make herself try and read things, but even at the age of seventeen her childish side was still dominant. Disappointingly (and very sensibly), both Mum and Dad had refused to let her learn apparation over the summer break, so that was another important thing of her to-do list for this year.

By now Pixie had zoned out and jumped slightly at the applause for something or other...a new professor? Okay. She wondered what subject he woud be teaching, having missed the announcement entirely. She was about to resume her conversation with the students either side of her when McGonagall mentioned Professor Twylan. Or Cameran White or whatever her name had really been. Pixie had feel really uncomfortable when she'd read the news, and even moreso when the letter had arrived on Hogwarts notepaper. She hadn't ever noticed anything odd about the potions mistress. She'd actually quite liked her, and was sure that had it not been for this woman she wouldn't have passed her potions exam, much less achieved a ridiculously unlikely Exceeds expectations. She wanted to do something...to write her a letter or something, but that would have been a bad idea. Whoever heard of thanking an undercover mass murderer for their help in passing your exams?

She was still thinking about that when she zoned back in during the endless list of things Filch had banned this year. Honestly, who would even want to buy cockroach clusters for them to get banned in the first place? Pixie was convinced the man only banned things to make everyone as miserable as he was...now there was an idea! The germ of a terrible idea began to form. Before she left Hogwarts, somehow... she was going to get Mr Filch to smile! The thought made her grin, something which got even wider as the speech finally ended and a feast appeared in front of her. Pixie quickly filled her plate with a bit of everything that was within reach, before asking, with her mouth full of roast chicken "Did you go away anywhere cool this summer?"

p i x i ec l a r k e - t r i c k e t t
f a i t h , t r u s t , & p i x i e d u s t

135 Posts 39
Re: [BoT 2005] some nights {open}
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2024, 03:14:07 PM »
Louise was back at Hogwarts and, while she felt rather confident about her lessons by now, she was feeling somewhat self-conscious. She had been out with Rachel to capture mirages in Aberdeenshire, totally unaware of the fact that Rachel wasn’t a normal co-worker and these mirages were something that had been caused by her.

She knew, of course, that she couldn’t have changed the course of events. She hadn’t been privy to all the information needed to figure out that Rachel Twylan was indeed no one else than Cameryn White who was now rotting in prison for several crimes. Still, the thought of having been out on her own with this dangerous woman caused Louise nightmares and made her feel guilty. Guilty of what she couldn’t quite say. She hadn’t committed any crimes. She had just accompanied a co-worker who had been able present the whole endeavour of capturing mirages as a totally worthwhile thing. Nevertheless, it made her feel awkward, guilty, and stupid to have been on an ‘adventure’ with the other witch. In fact, her feelings were so unsettling that she hadn’t even been able to fully confide in Sam whom she trusted more than anybody else in the world.

Professor McGonagall’s speech passed and Louise could barely focus on the words she said. Her whole focus lay on keeping her facial expression under control and not let anyone realise how uncomfortable she felt.

As the headmistress was finally done with her speech, Louise joined in for a brief applause and let her gaze wander through the room. Most of the students were helping themselves to food as soon as it appeared in front of them and she was tempted to do the same, just to keep herself busy. However, she didn’t want to rush it. They’d be sitting here for quite a while anyway. Plenty of time to indulge in food and try to get over the feeling that she should have done something to stop Cameryn White from causing any more damage.

182 Posts 39 heterosexual he/him played by Carys
Re: [BoT 2005] some nights {open}
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2024, 03:42:05 PM »
There were times when Sam missed his former position as deputy headmaster. And there were times - like now, and frequently over the past few months - that he was very glad that he no longer had that kind of responsibility. He pitied Minerva for what she had had to deal with recently, and while he´d made it clear (and felt strangely as though their position had been somehow reversed) that his door was always open if she wanted to talk, he also understood that this was something she and, to a lesser extent Filius, had had to deal with on their own.

He kept his face cheerful, applauded in all the right places, enthusiastically to welcome their new colleague as opposed somewhat affectionately each time a new student joined Ravenclaw house; and then fell silent as he knew what was coming.

He didn´t want to hear that woman´s name or even think about her. They´d all been taken in, every single one of them. He couldn´t even console himself that he hadn´t had more than minimal contact with her, because his daughter had been in her classes for an entire year. She had been safe, supposedly - attacking random children wouldn´t have served the woman´s twisted interests - but that didn´t make Sam feel any better either as a parent or about what this had likely done to Enitan´s trust issues. And she wasn´t the only one affected either.

He reached across to the professor sitting next to him, laid a hand gently on his wife´s own. "There was nothing you could have done" he said quietly as Minerva´s speech came to an end and the speech began. It was something he´d said many times in recent weeks and would no doubt say again. "Have something to eat. That chicken smells looks amazing. Shall I cut you a slice?"

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