(1938-06-14) Secret Ties
Details for Secret Ties
Summary: Randy talks to her cousin about his career plans. They are interrupted by Helene. Randy and Helene have a conversation about something-about nothing-about something and about the Mud Club. Randy proves she might have made a decent Prefect in some alternate universe, one in which Prefects would be more concerned with morals than rules.
Date: Fri Jun 14, 1938
Location: Club Room

Club Room, Hogwarts Castle

It is a spring night. The weather is cool and overcast.

This large room has a variety of uses, and can be setup differently for each club that uses it. Large storage doors around the room each hold a different club's equipment, to be setup with the wave of a wand. When the Athletics Club is here, for example, the room is full of gymnastics, weight, and other sports equipment. When the Domestics Club is here, however, stoves and cauldrons and workstations are more likely to be found here.

It's a Friday night, just after dinner, if a student were a little quick to dine, rather than laze about. Randy was one of those individuals. She hasn't been her gregarious self lately, and instead of chatting others up, trying to charm people out of their dessert someone's mother sent them in the post, or playing little harmless tricks on people, or entertain the firsties, she simply sits there somberly stuffing her face till she can zip off from the Great Hall. And here she is, waling on a heavy bag that remains suspended via charms. She's already started to work up a sweat as she focuses in on the bag, eyes only for her target, almost like she's in one of her rages, battling her demon of a temper into submission.

Hearing someone in the club room has Nathaniel heading that direction. As he enters the room he spots the raging Randy. With grin he props up against the wall to watch. After a few minutes of being ignored he decides to speak up. "What did that poor bag do to deserve such rough treatment I wonder?" He pushes off the wall and moves closer but stays slightly out of range so he doesn't get hit. "So is this just an exercise session or did someone upset you? Forgive me for being nosy but curiosity has always been one of my weaknesses." He smiles studying her with warm brown eyes.

One two jab, duck and hook on the upswing. Randy bobs back into position on one foot, then the other lightly, but when she hears the familiar voice, she settles…and then finally drops her guard. "Hey cousin," she says, following with a little sigh. "I didn't get my ministry apprenticeship is all," Nate would probably know that Randy intended to apprentice with the MLE and the Aurors, to follow in her father's footsteps. "But, it's fine…and other stuff, but it's not important." she offers him a soft smile despite her mood. He's kin. "I'll just be stuck at the castle with everyone this summer."

Nathaniel gives a look of mock fury. "That didn't take you? Well Obviously the Ministry is filled with idiots if they couldn't see the talent they were offered." He goes quiet a moment before continuing with a more serious tone. "Seriously though it will be alright. It isn't that bad being stuck at the castle I am stuck there too after all." He grins playfully.

"True," Randy says with a shrug and a smirk, the twinkle starting to return to her eyes. "So you don't have any plans to do an apprenticeship this summer?" her eyebrows arching with curiosity. She casually walks to grab a big medicine ball with both arms. Then she flips it in his direction. It rolls about a foot and a half, settling in the middle of the room. She grabs another one and plops it somewhat near to sit down.

Nathaniel shakes his head. He is standing near the center of the room talking to Randy. "No I don't. I think I would die of boredom at the Ministry and it’s not something I'm interested in anyway. Now if the Daily Prophet starts asking for apprentices I would have to at least try." He grins again. "If i was going to get a respectable career that would be it."

Randy is in some grey sweatpants and a cotton button up shortsleeved blouse. Her hair is tied back and she looks to have just worked up a sweat. In the center of the club room there are two large medicine balls, one of which the Macmillan girl is sitting on as she attends to removing the tape off her hands. Behind her is a heavy bag that is suspended via magic. "Why don't you write to them? And I'm not so sure our grandmothers would find journalism a respectable career," she says with a chuckle. Sllllllch, she's able to pull a bit of a layer of tape off in one piece and then she tears it away. Some silence passes, and she raises her eyes to her cousin, "…and if you were to get something not respectable?"

"…just toying with them. Like I'd -really- support such a group." Helene's voice carries a bit from the outside hall and soon the Slytherin is visible. She's attired in her uniform- impeccable as always. Her hair flows in soft waves over her shoulders. She glances into the club room as she passes and comes to a stop. There are a few other Slytherin girls, mostly younger, around her. She waves them on and turns to step into the room. "Macmillan."

"I might do that and I don't think they would mind too much if it was something I actually enjoyed." Nathaniels replies pausing as he hears talking in the hallway. he spins around to watch as the Slytherin girls enter the room. He glances back to Randy before focusing on the girl who seems to be leading the group. "Which Macmillan? There is two in the room after all." He says with an amused tone.

"Well, the rest of us wouldn't care," Randy says with a grin. "Those women are like granite…soaking in whiskey," she says, amused. Her posture is languid, leaning her elbows on her knees. She looks past Nathaniel to the door and when Helene slips in, she looks back down to now work on her other hand. "Prince…I heard you were a blood traitor." The girl has never really been incredibly public about her views, and as always, she remains inconclusive with her informational tone.

"Does it matter which?" A sculpted eyebrow arches over a hazel eye as Helene coolly regards Nathaniel. Her shoulders roll back slightly as she fully passes through the doorway into the room. There's a glance over the exercise equipment and her lips purse slightly. She seems about to speak on another subject before Randy speaks to her. There's a slight twitch of her lips, but she instead lifts hands, palms upwards. She effects a bit of a languid shrug. "Am I?" She acts as if she has no idea what it could be about, before eyes widen a margin. "Ah! The Mud Lovers Club. I simply thought I would perhaps expand my cultural experiences and find how the dirty side lives. I suppose not everyone is taught that it's best to know thy enemy."

Nathaniel watches the exchange with a curious and slightly amused expression. His tone is sarcastic when he speaks next. "Well aren't you open minded. So daring too.." He chuckles softly, he doesn't really care to talk about about blood status and is rather amused by all the posturing done in the name of it. It’s also fun to watch and he intends to do just that. He glances to Randy curious as how she will react to this.

"We're all the same to her," Randy informs Nathaniel looking over to him, Helene's comment steeped in subtext Randy has become all too familiar with since she came to Hogwarts in the wake of her family's demise. "Oh, so that's it," she lifts her eyes to the Slytherin girl, tempered anger behind her voice, "You might have a hard time washing all the dirt off your hands," her gaze hardened. Normally, the girl would probably say, 'Good luck with that,' in a cryptic playful way.

"Gryffindors. Most the same as the next. Always getting yourselves into some spot of trouble or another and yet managing to come out the other side victorious." Helene continues her trek into the room, finding a table to lean her hip against. She smooths her skirt, casting gaze towards Randy briefly. "Mind, some of you manage to stand out from the rest. Roses amongst the thorns." She lifts her chin slightly, smirk broadening to show teeth somewhat. "Why, Macmillan. I thought you knew that I like to get dirty from time to time."

"And what do the roses do that's any different from the rest?" The Macmillan girl could never resist the tasty morsels that whet her curiosity, even in the smallest of ways. She actually asks this of Helene while looking at Nathaniel. In fact, she keeps this up, smirking at her cousin. "Well, I could have sworn you were taught some manners, but then I must have mistaken manners for morals," she says flippantly with a little dismissive wave of her hand, something still steaming below the surface of her demeanor. Randy watches her cousin steal away from all the posturing. Even after he is gone, the ire doesn't leave her tone, "Tell me, if you wanted a rose, how would you retrieve it?"

"They do what roses do. Smell good, look good, and lures you into a false sense of security." Helene watches Nathaniel leave, chuckling to herself. She pushes from the table as he does and makes her way towards Randy. She watches the Gryffindor, gaze almost intent now. "Manners are vastly different from morals, my dear. Manners are universal. Morals are relatives." She moves to a stop not far away, head canting to the side slightly. "Retrieve a rose? Whyever would I wish to do that? Roses are at their best when left in their natural habitat."

"Almost decorative," almost. "Until they draw blood," Randy sneers as she finally frees her other hand of the last bit of tape. As she hears Helene draw nearer, she holds her ground, only keeping the girl in the corner of her eye, even as she draws so near. She's still leaning against her elbow, the other arm returning to rest casually across her knee. "Funny, are you sure it's not the other way around?…well, Helene, roses are in high demand."

"Haven't you noticed?" Helene pauses. Close, so close. And yet so far. She leans back on her heels, clasping hands behind her back. "We Slytherins love blood." Another quirk of lips and she shifts, casting a brief glance towards the door. Gaze soon returns to Randy though, locking onto the Gryffindor. "Are they? Mmm. I do so dream of having my own secret garden. Where I may go and enjoy the roses, but none may take them from me. It would be a shame to find them cut. Ripped away from where they belong."

"You love to poison it," Randy remarks astutely, her expression nondescript, like stone. "How convenient for you, a prison for the subjects you love," she finally lifts her eyes to the other girl with none of the usual warmth. She pushes herself up onto her feet to say, "Everything is about your convenience," something clearly coming, "Where are your morals? Conveniently relative to Antarctica?"

"Do roses have prisons?" Helene looks towards the ceiling, adopting a contemplative pose. "They can be so fragile, despite their thorns. They put up such a strong face, but all it takes is an errant, trampling foot or shears and they're… chopped away, mere fragrant petals at the whim of another. I prefer to see them flourish and thrive than become some tawdry token of affection to be forgotten." Her eyes come back to Randy and she blinks briefly. It's there, then gone, but she's taken aback. "My morals are my own, Macmillan." Voice perhaps briefly sharp. Uncertainty shining for a brief flicker. Out in one breath, restrained the next.

"It's difficult to grow roses, that's true. They're finicky and one moment they're there, thriving…the next moment gone," Randy stands squared up, her weight evenly distributed. She certainly is a Gryffindor with pride, but it becomes clear in a this moment that the girl's exceptional charm is but a drop in the ocean of presence she truly might command. Although her voice never rises above normal levels, her words lash like the sea striking against rock. "That's what you keep telling me, that you are your own person, that you aren't the sum of your friends, yet how can I expect to trust you to not toy with me when you aren't only willing, but rushing to gleefully toy with innocent people?" Her jaw sets firmly. "Unless you believe that to be morally acceptable?"

"Hmm." Whether Helene is truly taking into consideration what Randy has said or not is not wildly obvious. She does, at least, have the mien of one who is thinking things over. She blinks a few times at the harsh words, straightening. Behind her back, her fingers tighten against one another. Winding and tugging. A hidden sign of nerves. It allows her features to remain smooth. "What innocent people am I toying with?"

"What guilty people are you toying with?" Randy throws back at the Slytherin, her brow quirking. She's not taken back by Helene's reaction, or how she appears to react for that matter, and neither does she relent. "I'm not dumb, and I'm not accusing you of saying I am, but you seem to be pretty quick to take me for a fool. What are you hoping to gain by this? By ridiculing a people group that never chose to exist the way they do? Whatever you're planning I bet my on my father's grave it can't change their predicament, and isn't going to win anyone over. Reputation and power are relative, so surely you can relate." The last sentence is definitely a reproach of Helene on multiple fronts.

"I never said anything of toying with people to you," Helene says dryly. She's guarded now and it's an icy front. A cloak brought up to surround her. To protect and shield from uncertainty. One foot slides back a bit. A subconscious shift into dueling regime. "I have never taken you for a fool. I believe you have jumped to far too many conclusions without actively seeking the truth." Her brows furrow, eyes growing as cool as her tone. "I will not be judged upon a set of assumptions." She straightens and as she turns, her white-knuckled hands become visible for a brief second as she releases their grip and shakes her wrists out, beginning a slow gait — cannot be seen to flee — towards the door.

"You don't have to," Randy mutters darkly, not, 'you /didn't/ have to.' The Gryffindor stands strong in her place, letting the Slytherin's words fall away from her as if she's finally sloughed her old self, the one that would so easily succumb to undirected rage. Focused. Her eyes dart to Helene's wrists, the tell tale signs of retreat, protection…distancing from the fire before it consumes, a strange embrace that leaves everything changed in its wake. "/No one/ wants that," even Half-Bloods, Muggle-Borns, Randy skillfully points out, putting them in the same camp as Helene. A moment of decision flutters inside of the Gryffindor and she steps forward, hand shooting out to grab Helene by the wrist. "What are you afraid of?"

At Randy's touch, the floodgates open and tension flows like a river along Helene's frame. The brunette halts and muscles tense. Familiar ones, for another duelist. She does not reach for a wand, no, but she does seem poised to run. As it is, she does not resist or pull away. Not yet. Instead, she turns slowly to regard Randy. Actress or no, it's the eyes unfortunately. She cannot quite control what shows in them and they scream of uncertainty. Her other hand lifts after a moment, fingers trembling faintly. She reaches to touch the Gryffindor's cheek lightly. Her response may be succinct… and anything but simple. "You."

As Helene turns, the stony admonishment in Randy's eyes shifts, her eyes like embers, for all they try, failing to trap the sparks licking hungrily at air. She quiets them momentarily, slipping them closed at Helene's touch as if to shield her. She draws in a breath, her eyes opening on to pin Helene's. "Be brave," she returns, the words passing from her lips no less loaded.

It is then that Helene pulls away. It is not sharp or fierce, but subdued. Her features fall a bit and she draws a slow breath, but much of the ice is gone. Melted away in the wake of the fire from the Gryffindor. She is a woman undone, unbalanced. She draws in a steady breath to steel herself as she moves to walk away. Her voice wavers only briefly as she quotes in her passing: "Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, too rude, too boist'rous, and it pricks like a thorn."

A person is never so powerful as when they can stand completely vulnerable to the forces of the world. Come at me. Just try and take me. Take my love, take my passion. Tear the body down, but no one can ever possess them. She says nothing as the Slytherin leaves, listening quietly, respectfully. Her hand slips away from the girl's wrist delicately, falling to her side. Left alone, like someone who runs from the mountain they set afire. A wilderness ablaze, she whispers to the empty room, "I love you too."

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