(1937-10-01) Surprises
Details for Surprises
Summary: Acquaintances from the past reunite and discover that they have more in common than they had ever previously imagined.
Date: 1 October, 1937
Location: Ministry of Magic
Related: None

The hour is late, and the Ministry is sparsely populated as many of the witches and wizards have gone home for the day. But there will always be those who stay long hours, catching up on the endless workload. Cassius Malfoy is frequently such a wizard, as his roll as a Barrister for the Wizengamot means that a flood of new cases could come at any time. He sits at his desk in his dungeon office, placing the last folder onto an enormous pile. With a flick of his wand, the folders start to sort themselves into a filing cabinet nearby.

The last folder, will not, technically, be the last. Eden, newly returned to the London Office carries another one beneath her arm as she steps into the office. Dark hair pulled back and up in one of the pinup styles seen in America. Dressed in a simple white blouse and wool pencil skirt in a rather drab brown. "Excuse me.." She says without fully noticing who is behind the desk. "I have a file from the Obliviator's Office."

Cassius looks up from sealing an envelope to be sent out on the next owl. "Ah, just there, please." He gestures with his wand to his in-box. "Tell me it isn't another unauthorized transfiguration. Honestly, it's been the most bizarre epidemic recently."

Looking over the file quickly, Eden notes the gesture of the hand and only then does she take in the voice, place it somewhere in association with a memory. She blinks, takes a moment and then tilts her head. "No..I am afraid not." Hesitation and slowly the folder is set down and she lets her fingers linger against the edge of it. "Wait just a moment…Malfoy." The hair might be a give away. "Cassius?"

Cassius arches an eyebrow. He isn't unaccustomed to being recognized. Lately, in particular, he's become a controversial public figure as he has made several comments supporting the repeal of the Statute of Secrecy. But this sounds more…personal. He rises, curious, and tilts his head with hers, trying to catch her gaze. "Forgive me…have we met?" He gives her a charming smile. It comes easily, she is certainly not hard on the eyes.

Eden hesitates, having possibly expected to be recognized to some extent. She lets her hand fall away from the folder and she returns that smile, painted lips drawing back some. "Yes, just little shy of ten years ago I think was the last time I saw you." She mentions a moment, hesitating, waiting to see if he might yet recognize the girl in the woman's body.

Cassius peers at her, and his eyes suddenly widen with some astonishment. "Merlin's beard, it can't be. Do my eyes deceive me, or is this Eden Eibon standing before me?" His smile unfaltering, he glides around the desk, long strides showing off the slender height that distinguished him somewhat in school. He reaches his hands toward her, offering to take hers in a gesture of greeting.

Eden's smile brightens despite herself as she watches him move around the desk towards her. Dark eyes glance at the offered hand and she places her own in his. "So few have guessed right, Cassius. It is good to know I am not completely forgotten. It has been some time." She intones faintly and her eyes study him a moment as she gives a dip of her head. "I have heard you have been causing a bit of a stir in the wizarding world."

Cassius clasps both of his hands over her hand, then lifts it to his lips, placing a chaste kiss on her knuckles. "Oh, have I? I certainly hope so." There is an impish gleam in his eyes. "I'm glad to know that you follow the news, then, and not merely the Ministry's version of it."

"And as charming as you were so many years ago," Eden says lightly in reply to the kiss to her knuckles. Dark eyes sweep over him and her smile remains warm. "From what I hear, I think we might readily agree on many things. You are of course then of the same mind as Grindelwald?" A curious dark brow rises and her painted lips pull back into a pleased smile.

Cassius looks directly into her eyes, reaching with his own mind in an effort to delve into hers. With her thoughts on his subject of interest so close to the surface, it is a simple matter to sift through recent memories involving Grindelwald, and from there, to dive deeper, looking for how she came to feel this way.

Cassius looks directly into her eyes, reaching with his own mind in an effort to delve into hers. With her thoughts on his subject of interest so close to the surface, it is a simple matter to sift through recent memories involving Grindelwald, and from there, to dive deeper, looking for how she came to feel this way. "I have discovered that he and I have some similar opinions. I suspect that our aims may be parallel."

"You suspect," Eden echoes faintly, returning that dark gaze with her own for a moment in silence. Her head tilts and a dark curl shifts against her skin, brushing there against her skin before she breaks her gaze from his and yet, leaves her hand where it rests. "I would very much like to hear of your aims, Cassius," She intones, fingers flexing a moment over his hand.

Cassius smiles, every more delighted as his mental exploration reveals her frustrations with Muggles. He moves to pull up a chair for her, and draws up another to sit beside her, facing her. "Oh, my desires are easily enough explained. I want to repeal the Statue of Secrecy. It is outmoded and should never have been instituted in the first place. We — witches and wizards — are gifted with extraordinary abilities that dwarf any Muggle's. Why, then, do we live in fear of them? It is our responsibility to serve as the custodians of this world, and make certain the Muggles don't burn it to the ground as they seem so intent upon doing."

Settling into the seat with a whispered thanks, Eden looks across to him as he sits, a simple nod of her head given in return, "Agreed. We spend manpower to fix sightings and make up excuses. We must live separate from a world that obviously is more our own than theirs." She sighs softly, shaking her head as she crosses her ankles and draws them back beneath her. "As an obliviator I see this all the time. It is rather sickening, in my mind that they act such like cattle. We treat them as much already…simple brutes. Perhaps understanding what is actually around them might help them find some…higher calling. Even if they will never be able to embrace magic."

Cassius crosses his legs, steepling his fingers in front of him. "I daresay you have the right of it. But do not make the mistake of loathing them. They have their admirable qualities, unevolved though they might be. No, I say pity them. They are less cattle in my mind, than lost sheep. We are the shepherds. Perhaps one day — surely centuries from now — they might be able to stand as our equals. But until that time, it is our duty to protect them. Even from themselves."

A slow dip of her head in agreement, a sly smile coming to her lips that lights her dark eyes with something of fervor, "Quite. It is more for their benefit then ours and if we can cut some corners and save ourselves some extra trouble, all the better. We are hindering their evolution..to keep their minds closed to such possibilities and wonders. I shall never understand the right of it. They /have/ gone beyond the thought of burning a witch at the stake, time for us to show them we are beyond cursing their crops."

Cassius claps slowly, a quiet applause for her. "My word. Never did I imagine you would become so wise. Please, do not take offense to that. It is meant only as the highest compliment, to recognize that you have raised yourself above the propaganda perpetrated by our own Ministry."

"Anyone with half a mind can do so. The Ministry is not as good at as they would have us think. Some are just as blithely satisfied with being led as muggles are." She sighs softly, giving a shake of her head as Eden finally settles back to relax in her chair, hand lifting to brush at the corner of her mouth. "Hiding shows that are fearful of them, of their old beliefs and myths. We should not live apart." She explains faintly. "It does make me wonder how muggle parents who give birth to a magically gifted child deal with the sudden knowledge of our world. This would help ease that as well."

"Quite so, and it would help those Muggle families to understand how blessed they are to have such a child in their bloodline. Why, I would even propose that such families would enjoy certain benefits. Reduces taxation, or Ministry support during the Summer. We could do away with much of the bureaucracy surrounding underage magic use, and even encourage our children to practice their magic at home with some restrictions. Of course, being in M.A.C., you know all about it."

"Aid, I had not thought of that..which would also be good will on our part. Would definitely help the doing away with our secrecy." Eden motions with her hand there is a short, soft laugh. "Imagine, being able to use magical transportation out in the open." Sighing, she closes her eyes and hmmms, "It would make life so much easier. So many little ant nests no longer to have to worry about stepping on. It would definitely make my job…less in demand, granted there may still be need. I would have to probably look elsewhere for work but there is always cleaning up after those that tend to go overboard no matter the restrictions." Her smile warms as she looks across at him. "You know, this is refreshing. Working in the M.A.C…it is hard to voice such things because many of those working in that office have a sort of ..soft spot for the muggles and keeping them ignorant. Perhaps they fear for their jobs."

Cassius sighs, nodding. "Yes, I expect that your department is rather rife with that sort of attitude. I cannot blame them for it. Most never think about the greater ramifications of our policies." He taps his chin, pondering for a moment. "Very soon, I will be speaking at a rally about these very issues. I would be heartbroken if you did not attend."

"Truly? Heartbroken?" Eden sounds amused if not a little surprised but she laughs faintly. "it would be my undoing if I was not. At this moment, all of us that believe in breaking these policies and bringing about a new era for those of magical blood should gather if we wish to see change. Those that are yet undecided must hear our views, they must be swayed. Every cause needs its strength. I would be glad to lend it mine." A wry curl of her lips causes a gleam in her eye.

Cassius beams happily. "Splendid! I shall see to it that you receive a personal invitation. You are absolutely on the nose. We can complain all we like, but until we organize, we are merely peeps in the noise of the crowd." He seems so much more relaxed than the stiff, professional demeanor he wore when she first arrived.

"I would be honoured to receive one, do tell me though. Are you seeking others to speak on the matter?" She wonders, her dark eyes holding an edge to them. Eden passes a few fingertips to her red lips, head tilting just so. "It might do well to have more views…from different departments within the ministry. Always happy to help the cause in any way I can." She says, drawing her hand away from her mouth to motion it outwards indicating all that is around them.

Cassius tilts his head curiously. "Are you volunteering? I think, in the future, I would like this. But this will be a small event. Little steps toward our larger goal. I will speak, then hold a reception to encourage debate and discussion. We must rake the sand, so to speak, and see what treasures might be uncovered."

"You mean what grand supporters you may find amongst the rabble that will help win others to your cause." Amusement tinges her tone, but there is a seriousness that lies beneath it all. A nod of her head is given though, "Yes, I am volunteering for future events should you so need another." She shifts then, glancing at her watch for the moment. "Hmmm it is late and you likely wish to be out of her as much as I do." She starts to rise. "I should likely leave you to our last bit of work."

Cassius rises with her. "Not only new supporters, but also new ideas. I am not so arrogant as to believe only I am capable of progressive thoughts." He holds out a hand again to her. "For instance, I look forward to hearing more of yours."

"It would be my pleasure to share my thoughts with you," Eden intones and offers her hand again. "I am certain we can discuss them further over something at the Leaky Cauldron. I fear I have yet to find a place suitable enough for guests or to my tastes."

Cassius arches an eyebrow at the mention of the Leaky Cauldron. "Have you been to Café Tasseo on Craeft Alley? Just off of Diagon Alley."

"I have not, sadly its been some time since I have been home for any extended period." She draws a breath, catching his look in regards to the Cauldron. "Café Tasseo, sounds..new. Is it?" Eden asks, her brows furrowing as if trying to remember.

Cassius nods, "Relatively new. Less than a year old, I would say. Quaint, but very classy. They even offer complimentary tea leaf readings. It's quite charming." He pauses for a beat, then offers. "Perhaps you'll meet me there for lunch, sometime this week when we both find time in our busy schedules."

"Ahh, yes. That is why I had not heard of it before," Eden says, her smile easing back into place. The offer however as her brow arching slightly followed by a curious tilt of her head. "I very likely could find some time, but seeing as your schedule is likely more uncertain than mine, you should pick the day." She intones, dark eyes now focused completely on him.

Cassius grins mischievously. "Perhaps I'll surprise you. Do you like surprises?"

"That would completely depend on the kind of surprise, Cassius." Eden counters, but a wry smile comes fleetingly to her lips.

Cassius chuckles softly. "Oh, I like the mystery of that. I shall delve no further, and take my chances." It's a game now, and he so loves to play. He moves to escort her to the door. "I'll take no more of your time, Miss Eibon…it is still Miss Eibon?"

"You have not changed, Cassius." She remarks quickly, her lips parting her amusement before she walks with him towards the door to the office. Eden finally gets a look around when she turns to face him near the threshold before her eyes rest once more on his. "Last time I checked, yes." She gives a wiggle of her plain, unadorned manicured left hand as her right is still in his grasp. "I shall wait to hear from you with wary, bated breath. Please, call me Eden. You used to, why change?"

The game is truly afoot, then! "Eden," he echoes. "Paradise. I've always thought that was a lovely name." He gives her a gentlemanly half-bow at the waist. "Until the next time we meet, good evening, Eden."

"It is too bad for us both you did not say so sooner," Eden remarks and watches him bow, something of consideration drawing across her gaze before she nods her head, taking a step back and then turning, drawing her hand away. "Until next time," it is her turn to echo him. "Do not work too hard, Cassius." She warns him and then starts down the hall, the click of her heels echoing.

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