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Witchcraft And Wizardry

Magnus Grexx

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a part of Witchcraft And Wizardry, by Cookiiie.

None

Cookiiie holds sovereignty over Magnus Grexx, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

1,254 readers have been here.

Copyright: The creator of this roleplay has attributed some or all of its content to the following sources:

http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/main_page

Setting

Default Location for Witchcraft And Wizardry
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Magnus Grexx is a part of Witchcraft And Wizardry.

18 Characters Here

Waylon W. Wolfsbach [29] Head Boy, Cervus Seventh, Texan
Natasha Daggerman [29] "I'd much rather be a witty fool than a foolish wit."
Abraham Delavergne [27] "Get your head out of your ass and in the game!"
Stephen Schwarz [26] "I'm sorry? Did you say something?"
Rose Aguilera [20] Mudblood || Vulpes House
Stephen Notwood [13] "Ambition and magic. A potent combination, isn't it?"
Gideon Caulfield [9] "If others are uncertain of you, than you cannot be uncertain of success."
Bobby Burkinson [9] Deceased
Nora Selene Gray [7] Vulpes | Muggle Born | Fifth Year
Natalie Dumonte [5] "Call me 'Sootie' one more time and I swear I'll jinx you."

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Setting

3 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne
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For several moments as Abraham crouched down and analyzed Natasha's blank, pallid features, he felt like he was in some sort of bubble. The sounds around him seemed to be coming from a hundred miles away; the only sound that he heard up close was that of the rain pattering against the sand. The drops were running down through his hair and over his cheeks, while somewhere in the distance he heard none other than Waylon shouting at the top of his lungs. “Please, Abraham, get up! We've got to go! Just bring Natasha! Please! Hurry!”

The bubble burst as Abraham looked up to see Waylon in front of him, and before the boy could respond he felt the Texan's arms wrapping around him in a brief but nonetheless inviting hug. “Abraham, please, not now. I hate this. We can't lose. I can't be alone. I need your help. I need you.”

Waylon's words were enough to put Abraham in high alert once more. He glanced at Waylon's extended hand, then in a swift motion, he took it with his own cold one then stood to his feet and tossed Natasha over his shoulder as gently as he could. His left arm was secured protectively around the girl, and as he looked down to meet Waylon's worried eyes, Abraham squeezed his hand gently. "I am not under any circumstances leaving your side. We have to make it to the castle, now, I want to know where the fuck the headmaster is." His voice was once again strong and determined, and it was then that he realized just how worried he had been about Waylon since the attack had begun. The relief that flooded over him now was the first positive emotion he had felt over the past half hour.

He began walking hurriedly across the wet sand, his boots sinking into it with every step he took, then he remembered something else that wiped away any relief he felt just a few moments ago. "Schwarz is down. I don't know if you knew or not, but he was hit bad."

Setting

6 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Gideon Caulfield Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne Character Portrait: HeadMaster
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Imagine a fate worse than death...

Your spirit being sucked out of you like some sort of delicious elixir of life by these creatures...


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The girls in the chamber began squealing with laughter as gravity punched Natasha down. Her robes tattered and torn, she grimaced as the cold stone slapped hard against her bruised face, making her eyes bulge out of their sockets. Even though she experienced it more than most, the girl had never handled physical pain very well.

"Well, Scarface, are you just gonna sit there," giggled Sadie, "or am I going to have to drag you by your knotty hair again?"

In the torchlight, her face glowed hauntingly, as though she were a bare-boned demon. She had snatched up Natasha's knife in her left hand, while her right hand still contained the knife that had started this brutal showdown in the first place.

The metamorphmagi refused to stand up. Right now, dying seemed much more pleasant than getting kicked in the ass again, and if she were going to draw her last breath in this makeshift arena like a defeated gladiator lying dead in the Colosseum, then so be it. The institute's darkly-lit crypts would serve as a very nice tomb for her tiny, thin corpse.

But the more Natasha planned the details of her funeral, the more impatient Sadie grew. "I said GET UP!" she shouted, "If not, I swear on the headmistress' grave I'll gut you in two!!!"

The audience laughed. It was funny because Sadie was actually the headmistress' daughter.

Still, Natasha refused to budge. Her eyes stung so bad, that she dared not cry, as doing so would only cause more pain. With trepidation, she touched her hand to her face, shuddering at the sight of the heavy blood that painted her fingertips.

"I don't think she's moving," muttered Dorothea Slate. In manners and appearance, she was no better than Sadie. Whispers and giggles filled the air as the tension of what would happen next popped into the minds of every fourth year. The word coward was used quite a few times.

"Well then, as my grandfather used to tell me, if a puppet doesn't want to move, then you just have to pull at its strings..."

A faint gasp was heard. Natasha looked up to find Carlie Glimwood, the closest person she had to a best friend, in Sadie's custody, the bloody knife pressed against her long, pale neck. She would've told Carlie to run, as there was nobody behind her, and plenty of space between her body and the chamber door. If Sadie attempted to slash at Carlie's face as well, the effort would be futile, as the young girl would have a much more favorable chance of escape. However, there was just one teensy tiny problem...Carlie Glimwood was both blind and deaf.

"Let her go! You can hurt me all you want...you can lock my body in a coffin for all I care...just please don't touch her!!!"

Natasha's battered breath was useless. Sadie just chuckled. The teeth in her twisted smile were so sharp, they looked just like fangs.

"PLEASE!!!!"

With the loudest scream she had ever shot in her life, the metamorphmagi slumped to the floor. It was over. It was all over...

And then Sadie's breath trickled in the air like a flickering candle. "That's actually a very good idea...Y'know what...I like it." She turned to her group of goons. They all knew what to do. "LEVICORPUS!"

Natasha didn't fight back. As she hung upside down in the air, she heard the vengeful farewells of her fellow classmates grow more and more distant. She closed her eyes. It was sick to think that she deserved all of this, but she did. If only she had heeded the gossip's advice...if only she had made different choices.

If only she had been more intelligent...then perhaps none of this would have ever happened.

The door opened to a room with metal chains and a dusty wooden floor. Her ears were ringing, but Natasha could still make out the spells that caused the planks of wood below to open.

Her limp body dropped inside the improvised sarcophagus. Sadie, as well as Dorothea and another girl, gazed over her tattered flesh with both triumph and pity.

"Sweet dreams, Natasha Daggerman."

And with that, the broken planks of wood began to move back to their original places. The door to the sarcophagus was closing over her, and she'd be sleeping underneath the floorboards for the night.

In other words, it was a claustrophobic's worst nightmare.

With the little ounce of strength she had left, the metamorphmagi furiously screamed as her bruised fingers banged hard against the wood that lay just inches above her face.

It was at that moment, as she lay unconscious in Abraham's protective arms, that her closed eyelids gave the slightest stir.

She was not yet awake, but she sure as hell wasn't asleep.




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Soaking wet, Gideon knocked on the castle door once again, his patience growing thin. He waited a few minutes, and then knocked again. And again. Still, no one answered.

Either the teachers and headmaster were ignoring him inside their sanctuary, or they had all apparated to the battlefield. Perhaps it was a combination of the two. Nevertheless, Gideon was determined to reach his destination. He didn't know how much longer he could take wearing Stephen Schwarz on his shoulder like a sash.

There was no way he could unlock the door. After all, there were no locks or keyholes to use alohomora on, and the entranceway was bewitched to knock back any attempted explosions. Therefore, Gideon would have to find another way into the castle...and quickly.

He'd have to go around...

Or perhaps up...

About thirty feet above him stood a walkway perched directly on top of the castle gate. It was narrow, but well sealed with ledges and ionic columns. From there it was possible to head straight to the infirmary, as well as the extra-curricular house if you took the long way around. In a short while, it would also serve as Gideon's landing pad.

At least, that was if he was able to make the jump. Shakily, he emitted a miasma of nervous energy, locked his jaw, and gazed up at his destination. It was hard to be confident about such a move when your greatest fear was heights. To Gideon, falling down to his doom instead of getting pummeled by Death Eaters like the rest of the students seemed like a terrible and pathetic way to go.

Still, he knew the two spells he would need to make it. All he had to do was say them clearly, point in the right direction, and pray that nothing would go wrong.

"This is going to be some pretty trippy shit," he grumbled. He looked back at Stephen one last time.

"Sit tight in your chair, Stephen Hawking," he said before pointing his wand up towards the grey sky and yelling, "ASCENDIO!"

As though Gideon were a bullet, he shot straight up into the heavens, the walkway just fifteen feet below him. Empty atmosphere all around, he anxiously panted in and out through his mouth like a tired dog. The Arietem dared not look down, for fear of passing out while in the air and never waking back up again. He gripped on to Stephen's body tightly, as though he were a living parachute. Eventually, the earth's magnitude forced Gideon to stop rising. He started to fall down faster than he had flown up.

The seventeen-year-old pointed his wand directly at his feet. This was going to be the tricky part.

"ARRESTO MOMENTUM!" he cried. At first, nothing happened, and then slowly he felt the air around him turn soft and cushiony as though he were sinking down to the bottom of a fishbowl.

Propelling himself across the ledge onto the walkway, the restless teenager ran straight towards the infirmary as soon as his feet touched solid ground.

He shoved the door open, making the matron squeal in consternation. Clearly, she wasn't expecting his surprise visit.

"Why sir, what are you-"

"Is the headmaster aware of the fact that the cruise ship is currently being attacked by dementors and Death Eaters?" he spat.

The nurse's eyes widened in shock and fear. Her words were lost in her throat for a second before she managed to cough up,"I do not know, but I will surely go alert him." She then scurried away, quickly turning around for a moment and adding, "Is that boy you have there hurt?" as an afterthought.

"Not hurt," he answered, "just unconscious."

"Lie him on a bed then," she retorted, "I'll attend to him as soon as this is over."

Once she left the infirmary, Gideon placed Stephen on one of the empty beds, finding a nearby chair to rest upon while he gazed out the foggy window. He slumped back, running an exhausted hand through his slicked-back hair.

The young man sighed. "I'm sure you'll have plenty more in here worse than him..." he mused to himself as though the nurse were still able to hear him.

Setting

2 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natalie Dumonte Character Portrait: Corky De Luca
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Image"Bobby..." Death. Natalie had never been a real witness. She was not like so many of her classmates, scarred by tragic pasts and dark histories. She was ignorant in perhaps the best way. Ignorant of true tragedy. Even now, as she looked upon the face of the boy she barely knew, a boy that she'd spoken to only through sharp barbs, swift jinxes and a single punch, she did not feel sadness, or misery. She was not torn up by his death. Her mind was vacant of fond memories of him, and thus, as the glimmer in his eyes faded and his skin turned cool as marble, she felt little more than shock. Shock and disbelief.

Why were they here? What did they want? Murder and violence, were they truly the only things these wicked creatures lived for? Her thoughts were suddenly shattered, and sensing a presence behind her, she spun around, wand at the ready and lips folding around a hex. But the person was not masked, nor cloaked. She was a fellow student, one that Natalie was familiar with, and as she went to shield Natalie, she fired spells not at the Arietum witch, but at the cruel beings that were now attacking them.

"Cover me, I'm not leaving him here like this!" The girl spoke to her, her voice sharp and desperate, and as she hoisted the limp and lifeless figure, Natalie nodded, spinning on her heel and firing a rally of wordless jinxes and hexes and the oncoming parade. Glancing at the cowering first years still beside her, she jerked her head pointedly towards the Corky, "Keep down, and follow her!" They were, for a brief moment, too terrified to move, but as a curse came their way, only to be deflected by Natalie's own spell, they followed her command, hurrying teary-eyed after the short-haired witch.

Natalie noted her struggle, and, with a pained expression, twirled her wand in a familiar, second-year charm. Bobby's body rose slightly, hovering above the ground like a spirit ascending to heaven, but stayed inches from the deck's surface, weightless.

She turned back to the crowd of death eaters and dementors, shivering slightly as a coldness overcame her, but firing spells all the same. Not taking her eyes off the attackers, she called over her shoulder at the girl pulling along Bobby. "We have to get these first years out of here!" She urged, her eyes searching for somewhere safe, secluded... Where else? Magnus.

"We have to get to Magnu-" The yelp of a first year cut her off, and she looked back to see the child squirming on the ground, writhing in pain as the death eater above grinned maniacally. "Sectumsempra!" The wizard's eyes widened in horror as his hand, still clutching the wand, tumbled from his wrist, and with another spell, he was sent soaring backwards. Grabbing hold of the girl, Natalie hoisted her up, helping her up and following after Corky.

Setting

2 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Gideon Caulfield
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He was somewhere between the realm of consciousness and sleep. The phase where at any moment the body could succumb to sleep but the slightest noise or disturbance would bring it right out of that. He knew that if he attempted to open his eyes the searing pain would return; it was still pulsing through the crevices of his skull and in his lanky limbs.

It felt as if electricity had raced through every cell and left in its path a dull, throbbing sensation that lingered after every pulse. It hurt to swallow, and speaking was certainly out of the question.

As he laid there with his eyes closed, Stephen began recalling the events that had led up to his current state. For a moment he had to question how long he had been out cold; time felt like a nonexistent thing and the only way he could currently keep it was to count how many times his head throbbed. It was an inner clock, and after he reached sixty times he restarted the count. It was uncomfortably quiet within the confines of whatever room he was in, too quiet.

More than likely he was currently in the infirmary, and after noticing the smell of healing potions and freshly sanitized sheets floating about in the cold room, he knew his suspicions were correct. But how did he get there? Did Abraham carry him there? Was Abraham even alive? Was STEPHEN alive? What if the Death Eater had finished him off and he truly WAS dead, and this as some sort of after-life? Considering the possibility made his migraine ignite with a vengeance so powerful, he had to fight back a groan.

The harsh realization suddenly hit him and it hurt more than the bloody curse he was forced to endure did. Stephen had failed. He was supposed to fight and get the students off of the ship, but he had failed in epic proportions. Another possibility suddenly reared its head out: what if the students he left down below the deck died? The thought alone was enough to make him want to sink through the bed, through the floor and into the soil below the floors of the castle. Besides, he was as good as dead if his theory was correct.

Slowly, he began to open his green eyes, only to find that there were several cracks in his vision. At first he questioned if the curse permanently damaged eyesight and he just so happened to skip over that part in the textbook, but it didn't take long for him to figure out that it was just the result of his glasses shattering against the hardwood dock. The hairline cracks in the glasses caught the light coming from the candles in the chandeliers above, which only made the migraine swell with bubbles of fresh pain.

Once again he closed his eyes and for the first time, actually pretended to be dead. He wished more than anything in that moment that the neurons in his brain would just disintegrate, his heart would stop pumping and the decaying process would take it from there.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne
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____


Abraham squeezed Waylon's hand gently. "I am not under any circumstances leaving your side. We have to make it to the castle, now, I want to know where the fuck the headmaster is."His voice was once again strong and determined, almost startling Waylon. The Head Boy's eyes flashed with hope as the Arietem surged back to his usual, haughty self. The two lifted each other, with Natasha in tow, and headed off the beach back to the rest of the students running for their lives. The prefects were doing what they could to keep their shields up, though the death eaters and dementors were hitting them hard.
"Schwarz is down. I don't know if you knew or not, but he was hit bad," Abraham finally expressed as he came closer back to Earth. Through the battle, Waylon attempted to reflect the best reaction he could: a faint “uh-oh” face. Deep inside, Waylon wanted to scream and piss himself, but at the moment he had to watch Abraham's – and ergo Natasha's- backs.
By the time they got back to the larger group of students, it seemed like the thick of the battle was at its peak. Seeing that the majority of students had congregated together around the 7th years near the carriages, it seemed that most of the stragglers were fighting their way to the rest.
“Fumos!” Waylon exclaimed, a large puff of smoke billowing from his wand to cover the youngest of Magnus Grexx. Running around the rest of the group, he had hoped the smokescreen would catch onto the trees and cover them as they made their ascent up the island. While it wouldn't make them any less obvious, it would seriously hamper the death eaters' foci and capacity to cast spells.
Waylon was not an offensive duelist – he was barely a defensive duelist. He liked obscure, passive spells; the whole firefight was putting his pacifist spellcasting to the test. Facing men and women who wanted to kill not only him but also the lowerclassmen, and there weren't no two ways about it.
“I cain't do this! I'mma bouta lose my mind!” Waylon exclaimed, reaching out to grab Abraham's hand, once more seeking comfort in the other boy's soft fingers. The contrast against Waylon's rough ranch-ready hands caught him for a moment – the irony of a Frenchie Arietem and Texas tornado from Cervus was almost enough to make Waylon crack up. Well, it was enough. Waylon started giggling like a Catholic school girl – then he was downright guffawing, almost choking on his sneers and jeers.
Waylon and Abraham had never been an official ticket. Well, they've been an unofficial one, either. But since they were boys as first-years, they had a strange connection. Waylon was much more quiet back then, but Abraham was always – well, Abraham. As they got older, they noticed each other... in other ways. Generally, nobody asked as a matter of course, and neither one would divulge the details of their interactions. But usually, there only two moods the two could be in while in the same room. If it started with a flirt, they would be flirting the whole time; if it started with some sort of assertion, then the two would act like really dumb bulls dukin' it out for dominance.
It was this point that a mob of dementors had navigated themselves through the smokescreen and began to freely attack the mob of lowerclassmen. Damn, of course, you idiot! Waylon thought to himself, Freaking smoke-people would be able to see through smoke! Waylon gritted his teeth, shifting his boots in a territorial manner. “Y'all about walkin' on the fightin' side of me,” he said aloud. Still holding onto Abraham's hand, he used his other hand to cast circles with his wand. Pointing towards the dementors, he shouted, “EXPECTO PATRONUM!”
Abraham thought about holding Abraham's gentle hand, holding it tighter. Despite everything, the ins and outs they've been through over the years, Waylon had always had lots of fun with the Arietem captain. They were stupid friends and even more stupid rivals, but they never were selfish about it.
The first time they held hands was in the library, back in their 5th year. It happened by accident, reaching for the same book, but Waylon's hand just felt secure in Abraham's grasp. It reminded Waylon of his mother's hand – yes, Abraham was hunky and masculine- but the same gentle, confident command of her hand seem almost mirrored. It was like he was a little boy, again, with his mother in the hammock out back under the stars.
To Waylon's surprise, the spell was much more powerful for him than had been previously. In fact, the first time ever, his patronus corporealized – a wolf, no surprise. The wolf trotted around like a dog and then jolted towards the dementors, colliding against them like a shepherd dog. It was a good representation of Waylon – he was nothing but a cattle herder back home, and in terms of everything, he was a wolf. Loyal and protective of the pack, his responsibilities and those he cared for, Waylon W. Wolfsbach was not a leader, he was a servant of the whole pack.
As his patronus dissipated and the dementors with it, Waylon felt himself go weaker around the knees and let go of Abraham's hand. He had to stop for a moment to regain his composure, as the urgency to vomit seem to take over.

Setting

5 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne Character Portrait: HeadMaster
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Even with all of the chaos happening around him, all Abraham could momentarily focus on was the fact that Waylon was gripping his hand tightly. The island looked just like a battleground out of an old movie; the Dementors and the Death Eaters had no plans to give up. What exactly did they WANT? Who were they out to get? There was no time to answer the questions, because as soon as Waylon cased the smoke that enveloped the surrounding area around them in a thick smog-like smoke, the rain began coming down in bigger, angrier drops.

He barely had time to register which direction the rapid spells were coming from when suddenly he heard Waylon laughing, practically screaming with laughter, next to him. So this is what it must be like to lose your mind, he thought to himself, then began pulling Waylon to the right in the direction of the castle. They were covered by the smoke and the rain, but it wasn’t enough.

Before he could even spot the Dementors, Waylon had released a perfectly formed wolf patronus in the air, and all Abraham could do was watch as the wolf ran full speed towards the Dementors and collided against the dark masses to create a mirage of smoke and mist.

It was not until he noticed the Dementors scrambling away that he saw the Headmaster and the faculty finally outside, engaging in battle. “Over there!!” Abraham exclaimed, then glanced at an overwhelmed Waylon and began leading him to where the Headmaster was. The most important thing he could do was to get Natasha to the infirmary, and soon. He could only hope that he had gotten to her in time.



The Headmaster


He was well aware of the fact that the cruise was under attack. Even more so he was aware of the fact that what the death eaters really wanted was to enter the school, and the first step that had been done to prevent so was to cast a variety of protective spells around the perimeter. The ancient brick walls soaked in the magic, but his job was not even close to finished.

Alongside half of the faculty, the Headmaster stormed outside in the midst of falling rain, flying spells, flashes of color and the cold presence of the Dementors. Chaos was present everywhere, but it did not take long for the professors to take over from where the seventh years started. For a few moments, the Headmaster watched as the Dementors scattered like cockroaches; his presence even made the rabid-like death eaters disappear with through the thick brush. A few professors chased after them, while in the distance, the Headmaster could make out two students he knew quite well, with a third on one of their shoulders. Abraham Delavergne and Waylon Wolfsbach were hurrying up the beach towards the castle while some professors led other students in lines to safety, and the remaining ones hurried to the battered ship to see if anyone had been left behind. In the midst of the crowd, he saw a female student carrying a body as well. As she walked by, it didn’t take much to realize that the body, that of Bobby Burkinson, was nothing more than a corpse. His bright blue eyes were open and contrasted against his pallid, deceased flesh, and the Headmaster watched as one of the professors took the body from the girl as gently as possible.

“Headmaster,” Abraham said once he was within hearing distance of the elder wizard.

“Headmaster,” he repeated, a bit out of breath, and before he could go on, the Headmaster silenced him with a sharp look then wordlessly led the two boys within the castle. The doors were wide open and as they walked in ahead of the other professors and students, they were welcomed by ominous silence.

With a quick glance over his shoulder, the Headmaster noticed that the unconscious person on Abraham’s shoulder was Natasha Daggerman. “Take her to the infirmary Abraham, and when you return I do believe you have Prefect duties to attend to,” the Headmaster said in his usual quiet, emotionless voice. He watched as Abraham shot his eyebrows up in complete surprise, then gave the Headmaster a quick shake of the head.

“Sir, I am not the Arietem prefect, Bobby is—“

“Bobby is dead.”

Those words were enough to once again silence Abraham, but it wasn’t shocked silence. It was ‘I-was-afraid-to-ask-because-I-hoped-it-wasn’t-true’ silence. Without another glance at the Headmaster, Abraham nodded his head once sternly, then took Waylon's hand, grasped it tightly and led him to the infirmary hurriedly.

“Sir, we have gathered them in the dining hall, perhaps you should say a few words now…” The Astronomy professor’s words sounded from behind the Headmaster, and with a quick nod he turned to face her.

“Yes, I do believe you are right,” he simply replied, and began making his way down the long corridor, his robes flying behind him. It was time to address the school.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Gideon Caulfield Character Portrait: Rose Aguilera Character Portrait: HeadMaster
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Through the windowpane, he could just make out the flashes of light that shined half a mile away from where he was comfortably sitting. He sighed. It was improper of him to be laying low like a coward instead of joining in the fight. But what else could he do? He wasn't on a side. He was neutral in the midst of chaos. Entering it wouldn't be a part of the agreement. Still, he did have immunity. Perhaps it would be wise to witness the events that were unfolding outside. That way, if no one besides him survived, he would have the opportunity to know the truth, and even stretch it for the public if need be...

Before he exited the infirmary, he gave a long, grey gaze at Stephen Schwarz's eyelids. They twitched with uncertainty. Gideon knew that the boy would be regaining consciousness soon.

"If you can hear me," he drawled, leaning towards the boy's ear, "know that I did not save your life gratis. I expect something in return."

He gave a wolfish smirk, and then sauntered out the door.

It did not take him long to reach where the battle was ensuing. However, once he approached the docks, Gideon realized that the fighting had already commenced. The students were now grouping together, silently rambling along the road that led to the castle gates. Despite the inevitable gloom that hung in the air, there were a few small smiles plastered on some of the first years' faces. Clearly, tragedy could not bring down the innocence of inexperienced children.

And then he felt a gentle tug at his feet.

He looked down to find a girl with doe-like eyes and large rosy lips lying peacefully in the mud. There was a stunned expression on her face, her skin was as pale as the grey clouds above, and her hazel locks had been trampled down into the earth below. Although dirty, her tree root hair was still stunningly beautiful. The image was horrifying, yet tranquil at the same time. Gideon didn't even need to check her pulse. It was apparent that she was dead.

He crouched down, inspecting her visage. This girl was Rose Aguilera, a brilliant Vulpes whose silence had been more familiar to others than her prepossesing face. The members of his house had always accused her of bearing an inferior mudblood title, but now that she was the second student to have died in the crossfire, perhaps the jeers would cease. Hopefully they would. After all, there was a time when he did have feelings for the girl. Gazing upon her lifeless body only reminded him of all the moments he had wanted to stand up for her, but never got the courage to do so...

He gently picked up the girl, no tears shedding from his eyes. Her mud and dirt scattered onto his fingers and shrouds, making him feel as though he were also consumed by death's appalling clutch. A teacher spotted him, and Gideon was forced to explain his actions. The professor then offered to carry Rose back to the castle, as students were supposed to be gathering inside the dining hall. Gideon, on the other hand, would have to break the news to them all.

As he walked through empty space with languid steps, he was surprised to find that despite what had just occurred, the tables of students were just as chatty as ever. Still, it was apparent that fear cowered behind toothy smiles, and laughter was laced with apprehension.

Noticing the Headmaster approaching in front of him, Gideon blocked his path, and locked his gaze down at the stone floor before whispering, "Rose Aguilera is also dead."

Setting

5 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Gideon Caulfield Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne
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"If you can hear me, know that I did not save your life gratis. I expect something in return."

He could have recognized that voice anywhere; the smug, narcissistic voice of Gideon Caulfield. It was impossible to miss really, not because Stephen spent a significant amount time with the boy but simply because Gideon had been hard to avoid the past six years. Something about him did not sit well with Stephen; the majority of the time Gideon seemed to be just as emotionless as the Headmaster was, but it was an ominous type of emotionless that Stephen wanted no part of.

Without even opening his eyes, Stephen knew that the creepy Arietem probably had one of those obnoxious smirks that he loved to wear so much on his face, and it was as he heard him walking away that Stephen popped his eyes open and caught a glimpse of Gideon's back as he made his way towards the exit. "Fuck you," he retorted, half shouting the words. He surprised even himself with the harsh outburst, but he was beyond the point of caring.

By this point he was well adjusted to the never-ending throbbing in his head, and after another moment or two of staring at the ceiling, the Prefect slowly sat up, swung his legs off of the bed and removed his shattered glasses off the bridge of his nose with his left hand. The damage seemed minimal; nothing a simple spell wouldn't fix. The only problem was, he couldn't even begin to guess where his wand was, and with that thought came a dull, disappointed ache in the center of his chest. All he could do was hope that someone had located it and it would get returned to him.

Before he could give it too much thought, the sound of footsteps echoed down the hall towards the infirmary, and a moment later Abraham walked in, determined and sure of himself as always, a person hung over his shoulder. Waylon trailed in right behind him, and Stephen noticed they were joined at the hands. Fantastic, he thought to himself sarcastically, and more than anything he wished that he had the strength to just storm out of the room without a word to either of them. The last thing he wanted at the moment was conversation, but suddenly it was unavoidable, because Abraham quickly spotted him, then made his way over hurriedly, set the unconscious person on his shoulder down on the bed next to Stephen's and turned to face him. "Schwarz, are you alright? It's bad, it's really bad, they got—"

He realized who the person was before Abraham even finished his sentence, and upon seeing Natasha Daggerman's expressionless, pallid face he began shaking his head rapidly, which made his migraine flare up with every brusque movement. "No, no no no," he uttered, and Abraham must have seen the horror in his face because in a moment he stepped over and placed both of his hands on Stephen's shoulders.

"She's not dead, she's not dead Schwarz, the Dementors attacked her," he assured Stephen, meeting his eyes in the process, then proceeded to grip the boy's face with one hand. "The Headmaster knows, him and the faculty got everything under control. You can't lose your mind right now, now isn't the time—"

The sudden outburst was unavoidable, like two trains colliding; there was nothing one could do but watch and wait for it to be over. "WHO DIED AND MADE YOU PREFECT ALL OF A SUDDEN?" Stephen raged, then slapped Abraham's attempts at comfort away. He was on fire; whatever self-control he had and practiced had hid somewhere deep inside of him, somewhere where he could not find it. When he saw that Abraham had gone silent and his expression changed to one of surprise and, of all things, one of hurt, it fueled Stephen to stand to his feet and continue. "I HATE YOU, I fucking DESPISE you, for the past SIX YEARS you have made my life a fucking JOKE at this school, YOU ridiculed me, made me look like nothing more than a fucking SPAZ, and now, in the midst of disaster, you decide to be NICE to me? I don't need your encouragement, I am NOT losing my mind, fuck you, YOU'RE losing YOUR mind!!"

The more he went on, the further he sank. Abraham watched him with a look of pity that only meant Stephen WAS in fact losing his mind, and it was that look of pity that truly made him feel as if he was slowly but surely falling into the brink of insanity. As his voice failed him and he closed his mouth, a shocked silence settled on the room. It felt like minutes before another sound was made, and that was the sound of Abraham's soft voice.

"...Bobby Burkinson died. And Headmaster made me Prefect. Just so you know."

Stephen couldn't help but notice the short-lived smirk on Abraham's lips, one that did not last more than a second at most. Nevertheless, it had been there, and even as it left the chill that it brought in Stephen's heart remained.

Setting

4 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne
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There was a void. Then a scream. Light trails flashed upon Abraham's face. Back to darkness. More screaming. The sounds of shoes stomping upon stone steps. The heaviness of gravity pulling her down.

And then with one more delusional, train whistle shriek only audible inside her mind, Natasha's eyes jolted open. She gasped loudly, jumping upright on the bed like a zombie rising from the grave. There were thick beads of sweat dripping down her forehead, and the more breath she drew from the stale infirmary air, the more the nightmare seemed to go away. Still, it felt like there was a black hole located where her heart should have been. Perhaps there was one in her stomach as well. Clearly, the dementors had created some kind of imbalance inside of her soul. There was only emptiness and chill; her skin felt so cold, that she was wondering whether or not she was actually alive. Everything, including herself, seemed dead.

Still wheezing in oxygen, Natasha stared at Abraham, Waylon, and Stephen, who to her surprise were standing (and in Stephen's case, sitting,) right next to her. All of them had stern visages, only deepening the darkness trapped within her bones. She tried to give a small smile, but for the first time in ages, she was unable to do so.

She didn't know why, but the metamorphmagi could feel the unfamiliar sting of hot tears starting to form behind her eyes. Fortunately, before any salty droplets could begin dripping down her colorless cheeks, the nurse rushed in with a bowl of vanilla ice cream grasped between her thin fingers.

"Eat this, deary," she said, "you'll feel much better, I guarantee."

She quickly yet gently handed Natasha the small bowl, which felt cool in the girl's hands. The matron gave her a smile and a spoon, and with a pat on the head, slipped away out of the infirmary. After she swallowed a dosage of sugary vanilla goodness, the Vulpes looked back at her friends, her eyes glistening and bright again. The corners of her lips were raised, but there was still no smile upon her clammy, glowing face.

"Nice to see you three again." she said, her voice slightly weaker than before. She ingested another spoonful of ice cream. Slowly, the emptiness inside of her started to fill, and the corners of her mouth raised higher, now producing a toothless grin. Her eyes, however, remained glum and placid as they fixed upon Stephen. Thank goodness he was alive and well. She could now take relief in the fact that all of the torture she had gone through on the docks had been totally worth it in the end.

And that's when she remembered the Death Eaters. Bobby Burkinson. The rest of the students trapped on the ship. She had so many questions to ask, but there was one that she needed to pose before the rest, as it was the most important. She could hear the chatter of many students echoing throughout the hallways, and since the boys were in the room, she was probably okay, but she still wanted to know...

"Where's Rose?" she queried, now able to produce a full smile.

Setting

6 Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natasha Daggerman Character Portrait: Waylon W. Wolfsbach Character Portrait: Stephen Schwarz Character Portrait: Gideon Caulfield Character Portrait: Abraham Delavergne Character Portrait: Rose Aguilera
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"Rose is dead," came an answer from the other side of the room. Gideon Caulfield had snuck into the infirmary unnoticed. His abrupt appearance wasn't too suprising. Quiet and stealthy, the boy was like a ghost everywhere he went.

Just then, the room started to grow cold. Not just from the chill that came from the rain outside, but by the responses that materialized on every person's face.

"What..." Natasha Daggerman started, "what do you mean Rose is dead?"

"I mean precisely what I say," he replied back to the Vulpes with no drop of emotion, "Rose Aguillera is dead. I hate to say it so lightly, but the funeral service for her and Bobby Burkinson are going to be held tomorrow afternoon in the courtyard. The Headmaster's been all in a tizzy, what with two deaths in one day. It'd be best if we all paid our respects."

The girl's eyes narrowed. She was skeptical - clearly skeptical. "No, no, no..." she choked on her words, "no, I was there with her when the ship first got attacked, she couldn't have-"

"I was walking outside when the battle came to a close," he snapped back, "a Death Eater must have gotten the drop on her, because as I walked towards the docks, there she was...her body completely buried in the mud. I checked her pulse. There was nothing there, and there was nothing I could do. I'm sorry."

It was in that moment that Natasha Daggerman's face returned back to how it had been when she had lost consciousness. There was desolation imprinted in her eyes. She was in shock, but her aura was still sentient, still listening. Gideon pitied her. Being ravaged by dementors must have been easier than taking in this horrific information. After all, the girl was Rose's closest friend.

He stared at Abraham. Then Stephen. Then Waylon. Then finally, the floor below. He let out a sigh, and realigned the vetebrae of his spine. This was going to be excrutiatingly difficult.

"I have something to tell you all," he said, "something that I feel only you four should know." He paced the room, his hands trembling behind his back. There was a sort of whirling sensation that attempted to sweep him off his feet. Still, he had the strength to continue.

"I watched you fight on the docks this morning. None of you are like the rest of the lot that attends this crappy rubble of a private school," he said, "you know your stuff. You've done your research. If not for certain circumstances, you all could have picked off the entirety of those brutes one by one. You could snap them in half like toothpicks if you wanted to."

He was silent for a second, letting his words soak in. His head began to spin faster.

"I'm not going to say I was entirely innocent in the events that occured today," he said, trepidating fingers stroking through the back of his shaggy scalp. "However, I will say that I was completely unaware of the fact that they would take place on the ship. You see, I have, well...let's call them extended family in the terrorist group. They know me, and I know them. I am not affiliated with them, and they are not supposed to be affiliated with me. Today, they broke that rule..."

He pulled down the sleeve of his shirt, revealing a leather bracelet wrapped tightly around his wrist. On it were two milky-white charms. One was a full moon, the other, a skull.

"My parents were smart, y'see," he said, "they made a damn Unbreakable Vow with those radicals all the way back when I was a first-year. They made their friends swear not to harm me, or else they would suffer the penalty of death. Of course, that's what happens when you disagree to the terms of an Unbreakable Vow..."

He unlatched the bracelet from his wrist, holding it up for everyone to see. Although there was little light in the room, the charms gracefully glimmered as though they were made of sugar cubes.

"This is proof of the deal. The signature, as I like to call it. My parents have been making me wear it ever since that day so that I'll never risk getting caught in their crossfire...and now, well..."

He stared at it meticulously, as if looking for something that had never been there in the first place. Gideon gave a small shrug, and walked towards the foggy window pane on the other side of the room. He hastily opened it, let the bracelet dangle in the wind for a moment or two, and then let go, watching it as it dropped down into the bushes below.

He turned back to the four of them, a smirk on his face. "Now I'd rather take that risk so that I'd have reassurance that one of those bastards would meet their untimely demise."

He pulled out two wands from his back pockets. He tossed one to Stephen, while the other he threw in Natasha's direction.

"Found them on the docks," he said, "I confronted the teachers, and I believe those are yours. You'll need them," he said, "because I have a tremendous favor to ask the four of you."

Natasha's eyebrows furrowed. "What do you want?"

"I want an end to this suffering caused by the Death Eaters. I want an end to it before it even begins. And I want the four of you to come along with me. I want you all to at least consider it..."

He put one arm around Abraham, while the other he draped across Waylon's shoulder. "I think it's time we let the two of them rest." he said. "Besides, we have an interesting opening ceremony to attend. Best not be late..."

Gideon gave a small nod to both Stephen and Natasha before dragging Abraham and Waylon out the door. Once the walls of the infirmary were far away, he slammed it shut, and started to walk down the stairs. Of course, before he was gone, he had one final thing to say to the new prefect and his head boy companion.

"I don't like to beg but...please consider my offer," he melodically whispered, "if not for Rose's memory, then for yourselves."

And with that, Gideon Caulfied flew down the stairs, leaving Abraham and Waylon alone to themselves.




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When she was very young, Natasha had found a way to sneak into an amusement park through a chink in the metal fence that seperated the parking lot from the premises. There was this roller coaster that she always rode by herself whenever her dad was far away from home and she had the oppurtunity to live alone for a couple of days. The name was hard to remember, but the experience was not. There were so many corkscrews and vertical loops in the metal contraption that it was possible to completely lose yourself in the high-speed journey. One day, the ride had a technical malfunction, and the passengers got stuck upside-down. Natasha was one of those unfortunate passengers, and although the torture didn't last very long, it was still painful to feel all the blood escape from her body and sit in her head as though her cranium were a coconut filled with water. Now she was feeling the same exact thing as she tried to process the fact that her best friend had been horifically slaughtered by brutal Death Eaters without her protection.

Her hands started trepidating. The smile she had shown before now shrank back within her, and that dreaded emptiness began to spread again. The dementors were far away, but it felt like they were still there, floating above her.

There was a cooing sound coming from the opened window to her right. There, drenched in the rain, stood a snowy white owl that Natasha knew all too well.

Her lips began to quiver. Ginger stared at her as though she had taken the place of the creature's previous owner. How the bird had escaped its cage, she would never know, but she did understand why she had appeared in this place. It was something she didn't want to think about at the moment. She would just go take the bird and put it in the owlery or something. She would get Ginger out of the rain...

Slowly, her battered boots touched the stone floor. She was strong enough to walk, but not strong enough to keep the soul-sucking emptiness out of her stomach. A whirlpool of rage stirred within her mind, and every small step she took, the more violent it swirled. There was a prickly sensation forming behind her eyes again. She put one foot forward, and then another, and then another. By the time she was halfway to Ginger the owl, the weight of world had decided that it would no longer support her shaky balance. She slumped to the floor, her knees touching the ground, her weak fists pounding into the stone, and a loud cry of defeat penetrating through her dry lips.

And then it all came out. All of the despair she had been supressing throughout Gideon's entire conversation. A waterfall of tears exploded through her eye sockets, running down her cheeks and onto the floor. Her nose gushed a violent red color, and her hair started to frizz. This girl breaking down in the infarmary was completely different from the smiling, insensitive metamorphmagi people had come to know and love throughout the years. Her pettrifying wails filled up the entire room - they were loud enough to echo throughout the whole castle if the doors had not been shut.

"I'm sorry, Rose," she kept muttering through staggered, tear-stained breaths, "I'm so, so sorry..."

Her face buried itself into the ground, where the last of her sniffles and sobs disentigrated until they were barely audible. The bird in the windowsill just continued to stare at her, none of her howls seeming to make an impression on the creature's one-track mind.

Time slowed. The sound of rain filled the room again. Wheezing the last of her immediate emotions, Natasha Daggerman unsteadily sat herself upright. The way she still slumped, it almost appeared as though she would topple over and land in a makeshift fetal position. However, it seemed as though in that moment, she was being suspended by invisible strings.

She stared into space. Space, in all its cruelty, did not stare back. There was a void, and it completely consumed her.

"...I swore to protect her," she silently muttered, "I swore that I'd keep Rose safe. I swore that no bullies or enemies would ever harm her. Her life was so cold and dark already...she didn't need any more torture..."

The way her eyes were trained on the wall, it was hard to tell whether or not she was speaking to Stephen, or thin air.

"When I was enrolled in the Salem Institute, these girls challenged me to a knife fight simply because they hated me and they hated where I came from, and they particulary hated my powers," she said. "I was just sleeping the the dormitory only to be woken up and stunned right there, in the middle of the carpet. They thought it would be funny to drag me to the dungeons and force me into a battle with the headmistress's daughter. We used these real thin daggers of course...no wands, only daggers for a girl with the unfortunate last name of Daggerman..."

She wrapped her arms around her knees, gradually rocking back and forth. The whole world moved along with her.

"They dragged my friend, Carlie, down there too...she was blind and deaf and I was her friend simply because she needed one. No one understood that even though she couldn't see or hear, she was still a person. I should have known they would drag her into the chaos...the girls had been sending me messages about what was coming for days. There were messages and rumors and other omens...I can't believe I was so stupid not to think anything of them..."

She was choking on her emotions. Soon, another round of tears would be flowing down her face.

"Anyways...when the fight was over, they put a knife up to her neck so that I'd be forced to keep going. I refused, and instead they showed me mercy in the form of trapping me underneath the floorboards for the night. And then when the teachers finally found me in the morning, I was called straight to the headmistress's office. They'd spared my life, but they hadn't spared Carlie's...She had been stabbed multiple times in the chest. In the middle of the night, the girl who fought me had told her mother that I had senselessly murdered Carlie in the dungeons, and then right before I was about to go on a rampage, they had found a way to trap me underneath the floorboards...so that I wouldn't be a threat...so that I wouldn't harm any more people..."

She got up onto her two feet, slowly approaching Stephen's bed. With mirth and dread, she angrily snickered.

"Well of course the headmistress believed that bullshit story...it was made up by her precious daughter. The ministry, however, did not. I went to trial and they found me innocent of all of charges. Still, the headmistress decided to banish me from the grounds even though I had done nothing wrong. I didn't mind being expelled. That was the part I didn't mind...the part I did mind was the part where I had not forseen any of the gruesome events coming, and had been so stupid as to take rapid, unplanned actions...all leading up to Carlie's death..."

Emotionlessly, she sat down next to Stephen. "That's why I chose to be sorted into Vulpes instead of Ferres when I came here...I wanted to be smarter...make better, more intelligent choices...It's something I regret and don't regret at the same time..."

Her hands tightened together to form one big fist that she steadily placed on her knees. Uncomfortably, her fingers twisted and turned. "So when I met Rose and saw the things that she was going through, I knew I had to protect her. I knew I had to make things right for her, because if I didn't, the possibility of something terrible would undoubtedly fall upon her..."

She produced a small sniffle. "And then I left her alone on the boat in order to go save you, and now here we are. My decision, ultimately, has cost me her life. Turns out no matter what I try do to prevent it, my stupidity will always get the best of me..."

Again, she could feel hot tears form beneath the backs of her eyes. She was deadly silent for a few moments, staring at the ground, trying to find the right words in the cold depths of her broken brain to utter next. And she knew what she wanted to say. And she hated what she wanted to say. But she thought that since she had already gone this far, she might as well say it already.

"And you know what's the worst, most terrible, most vile thing about all of it?" she said. Natasha inhaled a shaky, unstable breath. "Despite how much I love Rose and despite how much I wish I could wind back the clock and save her life...I don't completely regret the choice that I made on the ship."

It was in that moment she stared at Stephen with blue eyes that told him everything. Her eyes told him how she looked upon him as though he were a perfect pane of glass, shimmering in the light despite the fact that he appeared fragile. Silently, salty droplets began to pour down her cheeks again. The way her face shined from all the tears, it was though she had been misted by the heavy raindrops that heavily fell outside.

And it was in that moment, while she was at her lowest point, that Natasha rested her head upon Stephen's shoulder. Her eyelids were gently closed in defeat. If not for the dwindling tears, anyone would have thought she was sleeping. She did not know Stephen Schwarz well enough to call him a good friend. He probably did not know her well enough, either. But the fact of the matter remained that she just needed a shoulder to cry on. Because right now, she doubted she could ever lift her heavy head back up again.