(1938-05-04) Initiates and Wannabes
Details for Initiates and Wannabes
Summary: Graham and Katherine randomly meet Julian at the Hog's Head Tavern and talk a bit about internships.
Date: 1938-05-04
Location: Hog's Head Tavern
Related: None

Hogsmeade - Sat May 04, 1938
Hog's Head Tavern

Dingy, dark, dangerous, welcome to the Hog's Head Tavern. Sawdust covers the floor, but it's like using dirt to cover up dirt. The sawdust is old and grimy and the windows can hardly be seen through and are practically opaque with filth. The walls are made of daub with half-timber supports, both the wooden beams and the daub look like they've been coated in a tar like wash. The sense of smell is assaulted by the pungency of goat and stale beer. A long bar looms in the back side of the room is outfitted with unseemly sorts. An ancient old wooden till rests behind the bar out of clientele reach, hung with a fist sized iron lock. Also behind the bar is a rickety wooden staircase that leads upwards for anyone brave enough to traverse the steps. To the side of the bar set into the wall is a huge fireplace that looks like it could fit a few spits to roast any wayward Hogwarts student in. Around the fireplace is a scattering of tables and chairs, some look recently put back together with a botched 'Reparo' spell. All in all the Hog's Head could win a prize for worst tavern in the world. But it's cheap, and quiet. A perfect place for a secret rendezvous, again for those daring enough to be here.

Katherine is sitting at a table towards the back of the Hog's Head Tavern. Sitting with her is a group of frankly seedy looking men whom she's berating, in a sweet kind of way, "No, no, no. A straight follows the sequence of the numbers, a full house is two of one kind and three of the other. And the straight beats the full house." Everyone has Muggle style playing cards in their hands and there is a pile of money on the table, mostly on Kat's side.

Graham enters into the pub and steps off to the side to see if he knows anyone here people watching always being a favorite past-time. There is one at least semi-familiar face from work. The young man moves further in and finds a table which happens to be near the others. He ponders if he wants a drink or just some food or both.

Since Julian had turned sixteen in March, he had been meaning to make his way to the Hog's Head. If not because it was generally avoided by students, then to at least check out the local color. Having slipped into the door and closing it behind him, he removes the fedora atop his head as he enters. Dressed appropriately and very much out of uniform for the beautiful Hogsmeade weekend, Aidan was wearing a white, button-down Oxford shirt and a solid black tie, to match the dark fedora that he had removed. A pair of gray slacks completes his ensemble… And as he eases his way in through the door, he peers around. He spots the lot at the table, quirking an eyebrow… pursing his lips so as to keep from chuckling too much at the seedier gentlemen's dispositions, he slides toward the bar, sidling up onto one of the stools, and considering what to order.

The men at the table with Katherine seem to be vacillating between being charmed by the pretty, young blond and annoyed by the fact that they can't seem to get a grasp of this Muggle game she's trying to teach them. Even more so since its costing them money. After loosing yet another hand one of the burlier specimens playing the game finally tips to annoyed and past that to angry, bouncing out of his chair and leaning over the table to put his hand firmly on the pile of coins in front of Kat and starts pulling them his way, "I don't know how you're doing it but you have to be cheating! I'll take my money back nowww…" His eyes open wide and cross to peer closely at the wand tip that is suddenly no more than an inch from the tip of his nose. With a smile that is more feral than friendly Kat says,"You would be smart to take your hand off my money. Or you'll leave richer by some knuts and poorer by a face." The rest of the table seems to decide that the game is over and quickly find other places to sit.

Graham can hear the rounds going on at the other table and as things get a bit more tense he casually reaches to his sleeve for his wand as well. It's only when the one steps up that he turns quickly around. The wand is lowered by out. "Not a good idea my friend, I believe the lady is right best to walk away." his voice is calm as the point is well made by the other an her wand in the guys face. The others moving off helps as well but he's silent watching.

Having ordered a drink finally - a non-alcoholic beverage, from the looks of it - Julian turns on his bar stool when he hears the scraping of chair legs on the floor. The scattering of the cockroaches, from the looks of it, is occurring from the table where the woman was practically robbing them blind. As he sips on his drink for a moment, he begins to slip off of the bar stool, and he begins to wander toward the little haggle still there. Wands out, and pointed in faces… my.

"This lot looks like they're serious business, mate," Julian remarks in passing as he walks by Kat and Graham both toward one of the dingy looking windows to look out of it… and he reaches up with a cloth out of his pocket to wipe it off, to let a little light in. "I think I'd take 'em seriously." He's not going to draw his wand by any stretch of the imagination… but it is there. It's in his pocket, the handle just visible.

Katherine stares down the much bigger man in front of her. The brute seemed to be ready to see if she's really as cool and competent as she's behaving. Until other wands start to come out and what might have been his support disappears from around him. Finally he backs off, glowering at Kat, "You'll pay for this girly. Mark me words." To which Kat responds by slowly putting her wand away and declaring to the tavern at large, "Barkeep, a round for everyone. Everyone, thank Mr. Burly here for that, since his money's paying for it." Which brings a cheer from most everyone at the bar except for 'Mr. Burly', who's glower deepens as he pushes out the front door.

Graham watches as the man leaves before placing his wand back into his sleeve after a quick moment as the danger passes for the moment. The young man looks back as another passes by giving Julian a nod before turning back to the gambler though he's now got a small smirk on his face. "Miss Sykes." he greets with a bow of his head he recognizes her from the office.

Remaining at the window a moment, Julian just looks out and furrows his eyebrows a little bit. As he begins to turn after the exclamation of a round on 'Mr. Burly', he blinks and raises an eyebrow at the young woman, before squinting a little. He then begins to make a quiet little 'oh' with his lips as his memory is jogged. "Sykes? Katherine Sykes?" He begins to steadily appraise her and he tilts his head. "Class of Thirty-one? Best in Tournament for the Dauntless Cup in '29?" He doesn't seem to be threatening, but rather recalling some information he had picked up somewhere.

Katherine smiles at Graham first, "Oh please! Kat or if you feel like being really long winded Katherine. The only people that call me Ms. Sykes are the bad guys. You might as well come and sit with me, Graham, since it seems I've been abandoned by my prior companions." Turning around at the approach of the now harried bartender she hands him most of the pile of coins sitting in front of her to cover her offer of a round for the whole tavern and then turns to the boy at the window. When she speaks to him she's slightly less informal than with her fellow Auror Initiate but not by much, "That would be me. So people still talk about those tournaments almost a decade after they happened?"

Graham moves over tables to the others as he's invited to move. "Fair enough, Kat. I'd say so, a fine winning." he says getting the idea, sitting down lightly as the money is taken to pay for the round for the bar at large. He looks back as the one he'd nodded to seems to know the other. The Auror listens to the accomplishments remembering a bit more about them as he nods but still impressed. "Very nice, guess dueling club makes good?"

"I spent a few hours polishin' the plaque in the trophy room," Julian remarks idly, "after I… ah." He purses his lips, furrowing his eyebrows a little bit. "… Let's say I made a rather handsy sixth year regret touching me and threatening underclassmen…" He pauses, reaching up and scratching his cheek slightly before straightening himself. "Edwards, ma'am." He promptly extends a hand toward the woman lightly, a friendly smile on his face as he regards her. "Julian Edwards. I'm a Fifth Year up at the School, Ravenclaw… I'm in the last round of the Paladin's Challenge this year." A pause, and he smiles a little. "S'a pleasure… Miss Sykes." Formality first, despite what he just heard… "Or… may I call you Katherine or Kat?"

Katherine grins at Graham as he sits down before returning her attention to Julian. "Dueling Club was the only thing that kept me sane while I was at Hogwarts, Graham. If it wasn't for the Club I would have probably been kicked out at some point or another." She doesn't expand on that, letting the man and the almost-man with her imagine what she might have been kicked out for. After considering Julian's request for a moment she finally shrugs and nods, "I don't see why not, I'm not /that/ much older than you. Kat'll be fine. And I'll tell you a little secret, Julian. If you ever need to polish again go to the broom closet. Left wall third row from the top down, 8th block. There's a charmed polishing cloth behind it. Make work go much faster. So what's a good little Ravenclaw doing in a seedy place like this?"

The young man orders a cider which is his usual. Graham is still listening and turns back at the story unable to stop the chuckle "Sounds like a bit of a mess for sure." he says shaking his head turning back to the other Auror though an eyebrow arches at her words. "Dueling club was my favorite too, though guess I was a good little Ravenclaw as well, prefect." he grins obviously not upset in truth he nods at the charmed cloth though he didn't see much trouble while at school.

Folding his hand-cloth away and tucking it back into his pocket, Julian steps away from the window at this point, letting it be. "Let's call it… expanding my horizons, as it were." Ordering himself a simple butterbeer and keeping it kosher, Julian smiles to the little barkeep. He sidles up to the the table the two sit at, and he quietly pulls out a chair, apparently not too worried about whether or not he was invited directly… As he looks between the two, he tilts his head. "The same could be asked of y'two," he notes lightly, leaning against the table for a moment. "You're a little young to be a card shark," he remarks toward Kat, and then toward Graham, he blinks… "And you don't seem th'type to generally bum around with card sharks."

Katherine grins wolfishly at Julian, tacitly letting him join the table by the simple expedient of not saying anything against it, "Appearances can be deceiving young Julian. There's a reason Mr. Cohen is a further ahead in his Auror training than I am, even thought I'm four years his senior. I had some… fun right out of Hogswart." Turning to Graham her grin turns into something between a smile and a smirk, "Oh, I remember you from school, Graham, don't you think I don't. And a right prat you could be sometimes with your goody-two-shoes act, especially after they made you a prefect." She doesn't really seem to hold this against him thought, since her tone is more teasing than anything else.

"These places can be good if you don't want to be bothered or just change in scenery like me now. Not a bad idea to get a feel for the other side of the tracks, just be careful huh?" Graham explains his own way as well. He cant help but chuckle at the others words but nods in agreement. He accepts his cider taking a drink before looking back. "I'm still bookish as ever not much changed there." he chuckles but continues. "Didn't stop you walloping me a few times on the dueling stage." He raises a glass in cheers to the other.

"Oh." Aurors. Julian raises his eyebrows slightly at Katherine and Graham both as he looks between them, lips pursing slightly as he tilts his head. "You're… from the Ministry, then," he remarks softly, tilting his head as he looks between them with a bit of appreciation. "I… I'm applying to an internship this summer at the Ministry," he tells them both, "particularly in the Ministry's Magical Law Enforcement Office. I've got interests more in the enforcement side of things than I do the interpretation of the law itself," he explains to them quietly, sipping on his drink quietly. "So… what brings you lot to Hogsmeade? Business at the school or here?" he asks them. He doesn't expect a straight answer, but it doesn't hurt to try.

Katherine giggles in a surprisingly girly way at Graham's assertion of being 'walloped', "You were not exactly a push over, Cohen. Stop being overly modest." Then she turns and puts her elbows on the table so she can use her hands to prop her chin on in yet another overly feminine move. Gazing at Julian with her eyes open wide, which makes their brown color taken of a warm, chocolatey glow in the fire light she smirks ever so slightly at him and says, "Do tell? Well, I think its very smart of you to choose the exciting side of things. Having your nose buried in all those old, dusty law books is sooooo boring. And the girls never like boring."

Graham takes another drink of his cider as he waits. He listens to both the student and the other from his office. The latter gets a grin and a shrug before turning back to the student "I think I heard a little about those internships Not much though." he pauses before his next question. "You thinking law enforcement squad or Auror's Office?" he asks just to be sure he's understanding correctly.

"Auror Office, in all honesty," Julian responds lightly, looking between the two as he takes another sip. Making a mental note, he rubs his nose slightly. "Y'never answered my question," he offers to them, sipping again and tilting his head.

Katherine gives Julian a slow, saucy wink. "Smart boy. Why do you think that was?" And then she moves on, once again ignoring the question, instead changing the topic back to Graham's suggestion of topics. "So tell us a little more about the details of these internships. Like Auror Cohen I've heard of them but have not looked into the details."

He cant help but chuckle at the last part from the student. "She's said it best this time. Of course you can call me Graham if i'd not said so before." this is said to the other from his office. He finishes off his cider "I apologize, but I have to head back into London." he pushes his chair back and stands. "Thanks for the drink Kat. Good to meet you Mr Edwards." he nods before making his way out.

"Mr. Cohen." Julian tilts his head toward Graham as he excuses himself, and he leans against the table, looking across it toward Kat for a moment and tilting his head. "Touche," he replies lightly, nodding a ltitle bit. An acceptable answer. "I've got my application packet in my trunk at the dormitory," he remarks idly, rolling his neck. "I have to get it owled in within two more weeks or so. We'll be taking our OWLs soon, so I'll have to append a transcript of those with it," he remarks idly… "Interview process, etcetera, etcetera…. I'm crossing my fingers."

Katherine waves a lazy hand to Graham as he exits the tavern then returns her attention to Julian. Cutting the vamp act she leans back in her chair, getting a little more comfortable as she asks, "So why the Auror's office? Its a lot of work to get ready to even qualify for training, and it means taking a lot more NEWTS than most people will ever have, let alone want, to take."

"I've always enjoyed a bit of a challenge. It's why I'm in the dueling club," Julian replies quietly, sipping on his drink again and shrugging his shoulders lightly. "M'mum's in the office of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes… says she loves her work for the Ministry," he remarks idly, "and while they're entirely different, I think it'd be an interesting field to embark on." He pauses, then, holding up a hand. "Suffice t'say… I do see… some things on the horizon." He sips on his drink. "Not in the sense of a Seer. Just… You kind of read the writing on the wall. I'm half-blooded… So I have connections in the Muggle world," he tells her quietly, reaching up to rub his nose slightly… "And… the things going on in their world? I see it… eventually spilling over into ours." A pause. "And that's why I really think I want to get in. To keep as much of it from happening as I can."

Katherine puts her elbow on the arm of her chair then holds her glass up with her fingertips, gripping it by the bottom. As she listen she spins the glass left-to-right, left-to-right, making the amber liquid in it swirl back and forth. "There are turbulent times coming, I agree." A quick, hard to define expression crossed her face when he mentioned being a half-blood but she mentions nothing of it as part of the conversation, "So in other words, you're like Auror Graham, a knight-in-shinning-armor-in-the-making?"

"The Knight is a rather strong piece in chess," Julian remarks idly, sipping on his drink still… His eyebrows furrowing slightly at her small flinch of an expression… mm. "Able to perform the L-movements laterally along the board and all. It can cover pretty large swaths of ground in a quick pace. But the problem with the knight is that it runs around the problem pieces a lot… whereas they can simply move forward… and… boomp. Important, but in the end, just as expendable as a pawn." He quietly makes a motion with his finger, as if tipping over a chess piece. "I like to think of myself as a bit of a Rook, or maybe a Bishop." He smiles a little and begins to explain, "Bishops move diagonally, backward and forward. They stay out of the direct path of their enemies and strike where it's most opportune. Rooks charge bravely forward without regard. Forward, backward, and from left to the right." He takes another swig of his butterbeer, and rolls his neck. "Knight's too flashy. It also doesn't imply one doesn't get their hands dirty."

Katherine smiles at the analogy, "Well, I wasn't comparing either of you with the chess piece but instead with the medieval concept of a knight, as a protector of the weak and defender of the helpless. But if you're going to go with the chess analogy then maybe you should work on styling yourself after a Queen." Here her smirk comes out in full force at the double entendre, and she watches to see if the young man will catch it as she continues speaking. "After all, she is the strongest, most versatile piece on the board."

"Oh, yes, I suppose that is true." Taking another drink of the butterbeer, finishing it off, Julian smiles a little bit and shrugs his shoulders. "The Queen, though, while powerful and capable of amazing movement… is overtaken with her power. And that, too, is what leads to either her eventual fall, or the allowing the capture of the King. Overconfidence." He grins a little bit, tilting his head at Kat and chuckling. "D'you play Chess, Kat?" he asks her quietly, placing his butterbeer aside and waving for someone to come grab it for a refill.

Katherine keeps nonchalantly spinning her glass, mostly ignoring the drink in it. With a small shake of the head she answers the question, "Not really. I have learned the basics but I decided that a game where with enough study you can learn all the possible move combinations was both too predictable and too much work. I like poker. Now that's a game that's a real challenge since its about learning to play the player, not the cards, and people come in an incredible, unpredictable variety, making it a game with endless variations." Her free hand strays to the deck of cards sitting on the table to rifle the cards to accompany her words.

"Allows y'to take the average bar hopper for a bit of coin, too, when the thought strikes." Julian's lips quirk up into a bit of a smirk, and when his fresh butterbeer arrives, he takes a sip, tilting his head. "Any game can be predicted with a degree of uncertainty. Even Poker," he notes. "Each card has a value, right? And trying to beat the other values on the table is what you aim for. It gets into probability and statistical thinking… but it's possible to predict." He takes another sip of his drink, smiling. Such a… Ravenclaw way of looking at things. "But I can admire the moxy it takes to sit here with… men like that," he remarks, gesturing back toward some of the other patrons quietly… "and pretty much take them for their keep."

Katherine arches her eyebrows a bit at the explanation then waggles her head side to side, "Technically, you're right. If it was only about the cards. But you have to deal with the players too. What are you going to do if you statistical analysis tells you a player has a weak hand but he starts raising the bet every turn of the table. Why would someone do that if they truly had a weak hand, it would be a waste of money, wouldn't it?"

"S'when it comes down t'who has the bigger set below the belt buckle, and whether or not they can make you believe they've got something stronger behind their hand," Julian responds coyly, and he begins to sit up slightly, taking a longer drink before placing his butterbeer to the side again. He places the mug down, and chuckles a little bit. "Which is where it comes into dealing with people." He nods quietly, resting his arms against the table a bit as he regards the woman… "S'not just about the numbers at that point. It's about seein' who's going to cop out first."

Katherine nods, seeming pleased with the boy's answer and finally taking a sip from her drink, still holding the glass by the bottom with her fingertips. "Good. That's exactly why you play the player and not the cards. And that's why its a great game for Auror want-to-bes. It helps you learn to read body language." Then he smile turn sly as she adds, "And, of course, supplements the miserable pay of an Auror Initiate."

"Perhaps I'll have t'read up on it," Julian responds softly, smiling a little bit and nodding. He then pauses, sipping on the last of his butterbeer, before placing the glass aside. "I'm supposed to be meeting my dear at the Broomsticks for an afternoon," he remarks idly, rolling his neck. "Say, d'you mind if I keep in touch? Y'seem… even if you're an Initiate… pretty well to do on your thought process." He raises an eyebrow in a quirk, smiling a little bit.

Katherine shakes her head,"I don't mind at all. I always enjoy being able to perve… Erhem! Mentor the younger generation. And I hear your not too shabby of a duelist either." Seems someone keeps track of at least the dueling scene at Hogwarts still. "Have fun with your sweetheart."

Giving Kat a bit of a look, Julian furrows his eyebrows and shakes his head slightly, beginning to chuckle. "'til next time, then, Miss Katherine." He begins to slide from his seat at that point… leaving a knut or two on the table as a tip to the bartender to come by and grab. He slips his fedora back onto his head, and gives a small wave to the woman. "You're quite insightful. I feel like I'll have a decent time actually gettin' to know you." With that, he is off, and he slips past the woman and toward the door, opening it up to let the light shine into the dingy little pub for a moment before slipping through it.

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