(1938-05-27) Checking on Ripley
Details for Checking on Ripley
Summary: Ophelia and Hephaesta go to look in on Ripley in the hospital wing.
Date: May 27, 1938
Location: Infirmary
Related: Explanations of Durmstrang

There is an eerie quiet in the infirmary and Ripley is sitting up on his bed, knees drawn in close as he looks to a nearby wall. His back is towards the door and he's breathing deep, almost in a trance it might seem. He's not in his robes but in a soft button up shirt and a pair of loose pants and no shoes.

Ophelia, still pale after the events of the night before, slips quietly through the door to the Hospital Wing. She's only halfway dressed in uniform, her Hogwarts skirt paired with a pale orange sweater, and is currently wearing bright red galoshes on her feet. She glances around, sighs sadly, and opens the door farther to let Hephaesta through.

Hephaesta shuffles in behind Ophelia with a click, whirrr, click, whirrr. Ever since coming out of the morning assembly, and learning all about what happened to Ophelia and the others at Durmstrang, her eyes haven't left her girlfriend. She's barely said a word, unsure what she could possibly say, other than a supportive, "I love you." But now her eyes drift momentarily to Ripley, and a sudden sense of emptiness comes over her. Ophelia must be hurting, but Ripley…there are surely no words for what he is going through.

Ripley isn't moving as he just stares at that wall. After a time, his hand moves and just goes across his hair as he scrubs it across his usually kept locks. The words that come are soft and hard to say, "It should have been me…" Ripley speaks to nobody in particular and has possibly been talking to himself for quite some time. His face is a mess, red lines his eyes and he's pale as he can be. There are just no more tears to be cried.

Ophelia reaches for Hephaesta's hand, clinging for support as much as to reassure her sweetheart, and slowly makes her way to the bed across from Ripley. She sits just to one side of his line of vision, searching his face quietly for a little while before she softly tries, "…Ripley?"

Hephaesta moves up with Ophelia to Ripley's bed. She's never really had much interaction with the young man, but somehow, through Ophelia's shared experience with him, she feels some sense of connection to Ripley. But she keeps her silence for now, letting Ophelia try to bridge the gap to the Fox boy's island of despair.

Ripley slowly just shakes his head as he looks out and past anyone in his view, "Anyone but him. Theo wanted it. Lucian could have done it. I could have. Stupid cup." He gnashes his teeth a bit and then speaks again, "Why did he do that?" His head shakes from side to side a moment before it clues in that there are people there. His head turns, mechanical, "Hello." He says very soft as if someone might hear.

Ophelia bites her lip, listening. Her tears return, though as she's cried on and off since moments after they arrived back at the castle, and she tries to wipe the first of them away before she speaks, her voice still soft, "Be… because he loved you?"

Hephaesta squeezes Ophelia's hand, giving her what strength she can. "I'm…so sorry, Ripley. He…he was…so smart..and…" Feeling the inadequacy of her own words, Phae trails off, hoping the look on her face properly expresses her sympathy.

Ripley gives a slow nod as if he heard and understood. "She aimed at me. He jumped in front of it. In front of a curse to save me." Ripley draws in a deep breath and looks up, "All my life, I protected him… And he saved me."

Ophelia's other hand goes up to Hephaesta's arm as she sniffs and nods with the other girl, and then with Ripley. "He did. And… and if I were him, I'd have done the same thing for someone I loved, who had protected me." She glances at Hephaesta as she speaks for a moment, then back to Ripley.

Hephaesta clings protectively to Ophelia. "That's real love. I'd do it for Ophelia, or for my brother. It…it was probably the only way he could do for you what you've always done for him." She catches her lip between her teeth, giving Ophelia an uncertain glance, as if to say: "Am I doing this right?"

Ripley reaches up with both hands and pulls his head down between his knees, "Something is missing. A big black hole." He draws in a deep breath and blows it out as his head comes back up to look at them, "There's no more." He taps his head, "Here."

Ophelia shakes her head at Hephaesta, more tears welling up as Ripley speaks. She doesn't know how to do this, either. She's never lost anyone in this awful way that wods cannot touch and chocolate cannot heal. "I'm sorry." Her words are barely a whisper, the tears clogging her throat, "I don't know… " Turning, she spies Gabby asleep in the corner, "Oh. oh, have… have you talked to her?"

Hephaesta goes silent again, but her brow furrows as a thought begins to form.

Ripley looks over and follows the eyes to Gabby, "No… Didn't even know she was here." He says and shakes his head, "Didn't even know that I got back here. I still just saw my brother…" And he stops. "I can't stop seeing him."

Ophelia closes her eyes, even the suggestion causing her to picture the events as well, which are all still so very fresh in her own mind. But she does manage to say, softly, "You.. you should. She's… she's the only one I know… who might understand… "

"Did Leander keep a journal?" Phae glances between the two of them. "He loved books as much as any Ravenclaw, and most Ravenclaws keep some kind of journal. If he did…it might help. You know…to read his thoughts."

Ripley gives a little nod of his head, "I will." He nods, eyes still with that far off quality. He blinks a bit and looks to Phae, "Possible. He did a lot with his school work. Haven't even thought about that…" And then some thought comes into his brain, "Could you two check on Aristotle? His fox?"

Ophelia turns to Hephaesta, her eyes widening as she nods. Of course, a journal! She's pondering this when Ripley makes his request, and with a frown turns back, "Of course… but, haven't they released you yet?"

Check on an animal? Phae glances hesitantly at Ophelia, but her relief is evident when the other girl agrees. "Yes, of course. We'll do whatever you need." From a safe distance while Ophelia tends to the fox, of course.

Ripley rubs a hand across his face, "I don't even know how I got here. Last I remembered I saw Leander fall." He swallows, "Did someone… Bring him back?"

Ophelia gives Hephaesta's arm a reassuring squeeze, sensing the worry more than seeing it. She nods to Ripley, "Yes, Ogg took you both away when we got back to the Castle. Then we were all brought here. I don't know where… where he was taken after that."

Hephaesta isn't sure what to say anymore, so she latches onto what good news she can think of. "Did you hear? Professor Dumbledore made it back safely. He was at the assembly this morning."

Ripley gives the slightest lip lift of a smile, "Good. That battle was insane… That guy. In the papers. He killed my brother. Somehow had something to do with it." Ripley swallows and shakes his head a bit, "That girl… She needs to die." He says, deadpanned and deathly quiet in the promise and then his voice turns sweet, "I need to sleep." And he rolls around and lays out on the bed, staring back at the wall.

Ophelia starts to nod with Hephaesta, hoping as well that the cheerful news will help. But as he speaks, her eyes widen, and she just sits there, with no idea of what to say.

Hephaesta sighs, nodding sadly. "We'll check on Aristotle." Somehow. Being non-Slytherins might present a challenge, but they'll find a way. She starts to move off, tugging Ophelia along. "Let us know if you need anything else, Ripley."

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