(1938-04-01) The Mulciber Connection
Details for The Mulciber Connection
Summary: Ophelia rushes to ask Hephaesta about her family's possible connection to the Heart of Gold.
Date: April 1, 1938
Location: Ravenclaw Common Room
Related: Plot: Forgotten Shadows

Ophelia started looking for Hephaesta the moment she left Professor Binns. She didn't even stop to see Gabrielle and share what she had learned. Because though she has been sharing the details of the events that have lately been surrounding Gabrielle with her sweetheart, what she learned today has set her to worrying about Hephaesta.

So she hurries up the staircase and into the Ravenclaw tower, searching the common room on her way through to check the fourth Year girls dormitory, "Phae? Phae, are you in here?" She's winded from her running, and there's worry plain in her voice as well as her eyes, as she pushes her hair back to look around.

Hephaesta is here…at least, there's someone on her bed that is probably her. It isn't certain, because her head is currently encased in what looks a bit like a kitchen strainer. The cookware turned in Ophelia's direction. "I'm right here, Ophie. Hey, could you try this on and tell me how well you can see?" Phae lifts the strainer from her head and offers it toward Ophelia.

Ophelia stops, and after a short bit of peering curiously sighs in relief, and nods. "Yes, a-alright." Dropping her books and crols on the bed, she takes up the strainer device and, after a quick glance over the thing, places it over her head. "This won't, ah… cause any memory lapses will it? There's something I need to tall you about… "

"Memory lapses?" Phae giggles softly. "No, silly. It's just a colander. I'm just doing some tests on methods of diffusing light." She swivels on the bed to make room, and pats the spot beside her. "What did you want to talk about?"

"Oh." Ophelia blushes, glad of the colander for a moment that it can hide her face. She peers around through the ting as she looks for a book-free spot to sit, taking it off only after she has done so. "I can see well enough I suppose, though I'd definitely not do any studying with it over my eyes." Setting the strainer next to Phae, she looks up, "Are you much familiar with the things your ancestors made? According to professor Binns, it was someone in your family who helped create the Heart of Gold."

Hephaesta blinks, then shudders. "The Heart of Gold? That's from that horrible message people saw in the mirrors, isn't it?" Phae didn't view the ominous threat that appears in Hogwarts' mirrors a month ago. But like everyone else, she's heard all about it.

Ophelia nods. "It was. And that message was the memory in Gabby's wand. We were - well, Professor Merrythought was trying to get it out when that happened." She takes a deep breath, then takes a few minutes to catch Hephaesta up on the events since the Mirror, The Vengals and the Heart, the connection Wandmaker Hawthorne has to the family, until she has come to her discussion a little while ago with Professor Binns. "He remembered the Heart, just like I hoped." She concludes, "And he said it was made by two people. An alchemist called Dragostus. And an artificer. Opiferus Mulciber."

Hephaesta's eyes just get wider and wider as Ophelia details the series of increasingly more disturbing events. For a time, she doesn't respond as she tries to sort through everything she just learned. "Gabrielle…is she alright? Wait…Opiferus Mulciber?" Hephaesta nibbles worriedly at her lip. "I don't know of any Opiferus. Not…that I'm very well versed in my family tree." Phae's cheeks colour at the admission.

Ophelia nods, and reaches over for one of Phae's hands to hold tightly. "Its alright. I think it was many, many years back. But I also think it would be a good idea to find out. If the Vengals know that this is connected to your family, Phae, and they can't make the thing do what they want it to… "

Hephaesta winces at the notion. "Oh, stars…my father. They might come for him! I have to write to him immediately." Wasting no time, she fishes into a dresser drawer for parchment and a quill, and pulls up a lap-desk to write on.

Ophelia nods and pulls out the scrolls with the notes, to give Hephaesta the correct spelling. "Do you think we might ask him if he has any knowledge of Opiferus? I'd like to tell Gabby and Professor Merrythought, and of course Wandmaker Hawthorne. And the more we can know the better we can do."

Hephaesta nods, "Definitely. If he doesn't, I'll bet that my grandfather does. Of course…getting answers out of him can be difficult." Phae looks up, worrying at her lip again. "He's in the Long-Term Residence Ward at St. Mungo's."

Ophelia looks sadly up from her notes. "I'm so sorry, Phae. I remember you mentioning that he was at St. Mungo's. What happened?"

Hephaesta sighs softly. "He got old. He's the most brilliant artificer in a dragon's age…but his mind is…he's senile." She winces at even saying the word. "He has these moments, though, when my old Grandfather shines through, and he's perfectly clear. But usually he just can't make sense of things."

Ophelia nods along, showing sympathy as well as she knows how. "If you can go and see him, I'll go with you if you like. Maybe we can take him something… to cheer him up? It can't be fun having to live in a Hospital all time. And maybe we can help him to remember?"

Hephaesta nods, brightening a touch. "Yes, I'd like that. I want you to meet him. He's amazing. He likes butterscotch candies very much."

Ophelia smiles, and nod quickly. "I can get buckets full, if you like. And I would like very much to meet him as well." She scoots up farther on the bed, until she is sitting next to Hephaesta, so that she can wrap an arm around the girl's shoulders.

Hephaesta leans into Ophelia, glad for the comfort. "We can take the train out to London. I'll ask Dada to arrange it in my letter." She lifts her face up to peck Ophelia's cheek. "What do you think the Vengals want with the Heart of Gold?"

Ophelia squeezes Phae tightly, and quickly returns the cheek kiss. "I'm not sure. I'd like to have a better idea of what it does before I guess. Professor Binns says it has to do with emotions, taking power from them somehow. But I confes I didn't really understand it."

"Goodness. A Mulciber fiddling with emotions. Mother would be so proud." Phae chuckles weakly.

Ophelia pulls Hephaesta close, wrapping her other arm around the girl tightly. "Maybe ot won't be so bad. If we can find out how it works, and if there's a way to stop it or shut it off, then we might be able to counter these Vengal people." She sighs, then, and confesses, "I was so worried about you, when he said that name. They already know that there are students mixed up in this. If they find out that one of the students here is a Mulciber, I don't know… "

Hephaesta curls her arms around Ophelia, returning the hug. "Surely they can't be that stupid. What would they think I could do for them? I make bubble thrusters and wand buffers." From his perch on her dresser, Gizmo gives a whirring hoot. Phae chuckles, "Yes, Giz, and a mechanical owl. But honestly, my father is the real artificer of the family."

Ophelia chuckles with Hephaesta, but the worry remains on her face. "Who knows? They're dark wizards, they might think all /sorts/ of awful things!" she nods though, "I thought of him, too. Oh, but… " Pulling back one arm, she reaches into her collar and pulls out a pendant, but not the clockwork heart. That one remains in place. "Gabby got these, from Conall I think. They have a protection charm on them. I want you to wear this one."

Hephaesta takes the pendant, examining it curiously with that how-does-it-work face she gets. "But…then you won't have the protection charm."

The pendant, with an image of a n eagle on one side and a book on the other, is given over to Hephaesta with a chuckle. "I don't think I need it, really. There's little to suggest I would be useful to these people. They've not even seen me, and my name's not one they'll be looking for."

Hephaesta waffles, looking from the pendant to Ophelia several times. "Well…alright. But just for now." She slips the charm over her head, brushing her hands through her hair to free it from the cord. "How does it work?"

Ophelia shakes her head, though she's already feeling more relieved. "You'll have to ask Conall about that, I don't know. Gabby gave it to me, she had a few of them. There was something about signalling if you are in danger, but I don't remember how it works exactly." She frowns.

Hephaesta nods. "Alright. I'll ask him." She takes a long, heavy breath. "Wow. I never imagined we'd have to worry about things like this. We're supposed to be concerned about O.W.L.s, not Dark wizards."

Ophelia grins wryly. "Well, ah… maybe this will help us to be better at our O.W.L.s? Practical knowledge?" She knows its flimsy reasoning, and shrugs, chuckling a bit.

Hephaesta can't help but smile. "Now that's thinking like a Ravenclaw." She leans in to steal another peck on the cheek. "Alright, I had better get this letter written. Then we'll need to make arrangements to go to London and try to see Grandfather."

Ophelia turns her head quickly to turn the kiss into a real one, and pulls back with a bright smile. "Alright. I need to go see if I can find Gabby and tell her what I've learned. I'll meet you at dinner, save me a place if you make it first?" Picking up her books and scrolls once more, she grins, then turns to head back out, with a determined bounce to her step now that her worry for Phae is lessened.

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