(1938-09-08) Throwing the Book at Them
Details for Throwing the Book at Them
Summary: Idle chatter before dinner turns into defensive action against bullies.
Date: 8 September 1938
Location: Entry Hall

The marble beginning of the staircases leading upwards into the castle face the heavy oak doors that lead outside across a flagged stone expanse that could fit an average house. Looking up, one can see the staircases shifting from one landing to the next, on up into the shadows making it difficult to tell just how high the Entrance Hall really is. The torches in the walls do little to pierce the dimness overhead, but cast light on the suits of armor flanking the front doors and the many doors spaced at odd intervals leading to the Great Hall, Slytherin Dungeons, Staff quarters, and even a broom closet.
Perhaps the thing of greatest interest in this entry though, at least to the students, are the four large hourglasses housed in niches on one of the walls opposite the doors. One filled with sapphires, one with emeralds, one with rubies, and the last with topaz, these hourglasses keep track of the all important House points. The gems in the bottom half represent the points earned so far by houses Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin.

It is not quite dinner, not yet, but soon it will be. Some students are milling about in the grand entry hall, waiting to go into dinner, while others are just passing through on their way somewhere else first. Little Fiona is one of those waiting to go in. She has perched herself on the base of a statue and is reading a thick tome. Every so often she recites something she has read, the words are foreign. Greek perhaps?

Entering the hall with his head stuck in a book Andrew looks up breifly scanning the area. He seems relieved by something and props himself against an open part of the wall going back to his book. The girl reciting in a forigen language gets a curious look and then a shy smile before his head goes down, back to his own text which seems to be on ancient runes and thier uses. He turns the page reading quietly his brow furrowed in concentration.

Finn wanders into the hall behind a gaggle of fellow students, looking nervous as usual. He occasionally chuckles along with the group, and attempts to speak but is often cut across as though unnoticed. As they begin to make their way towards the great hall, however, he accidentally bumps into a student, ricocheting off their back and lands roughly onto the floor before a statue while the group, seemingly oblivious, walks away.

"OUCH!" Elise says, for it was she that Finn ricochee'd off of. She rubs her arm, sticks out her lower lip, and looks for the culprit. All of her books are on the floor where she dropped them after being bumped into. "Please watch where you're going," she chides him.

Lowering her book at the cry from Elise Fiona looks over at her and the boy who is on the floor. With a roll of her eyes the tiny first year bounds to her feet and moves over to help Elise pick up the books. Finn is on his own, or maybe someone else will be nice and help him up. "Are you hurt, Elise?" she asks the older girl.

Andrew sees the boy hit the floor and frowns. Stuffing his book into the bookbag he carries he walks over in time to hear Elise's scolding. He looks between the fallen boy and the stack of books Elise dropped as if trying to decide what to do. After a second he decides people first and offers his hand to help the other up. Just as well as Fiona is already helping the girl with her books. "Are you alright? You hit the floor pretty hard…" He looks shy, unsure but he keeps the hand out anyway in case the other wants help getting off the floor.

Finn gratefully accepts the hand and shrugs. "I think I'll be alright…wasn't looking." he says, offering an apologetic smile to the girl he had bumped into. "I'm awfully sorry."

Elise gives her arm one final rub and bends to help Fiona with the books. "Just a bruise, likely," she tells the younger girl. "Nothing too serious. Thank you." She glances at Finn, then nods, her frown melting away. "Apology accepted," she says graciously. "I'm Elise Harper. What's your name?"

Fiona has assumed she isn't being asked who she is. Everyone knows the first year, right? She is amazing and studious and well has several older brothers. Plus she met Elise on the train. Adding the final book to Elise's pile of them Fiona picks up her own book. The title is just visible on the spine but given that it is in ancient Greek it likely isn't something many students can understand. Curiously she looks at Andrew and his book, even sidles over to ask, "What are you reading?"

Finn smiles, relieved no one is angry with him. He politely holds out a hand to Elise. "I'm Finnigan Potts, pleased to meet you."

Andrew helps Finn up and then backs away with a shy smile. He is about to go back to his reading and has just pulled his books back out when he hears Fiona's question. He blinks in surprise and turns the book so she can see the title. "Its about runes and thier uses throughout history as well as modern applications. Its very interesting." He smiles nervously at the girl.

Elise, just as politely, shakes Finn's hand. "Pleased to meet you, Potts," she says. She, too, glances over at Andrew, then down at his book, and over at Fiona. "Any good protection runes?" she asks curiously.

"It sounds rather interesting," agrees Fiona. She leans up on her tip toes to peer at the book Andrew has. "Mine is on mythology. Not practical but interesting nevertheless." Her dark head tilts towards Elise and and a smile ghosts across her mouth before the small girl looks back up at Andrew as if to ask /Well?/

Finn is still grinning as he puts his hands in his hands in his pockets. "What sort of mythology?" he asks the first year.

Andrew manages a shy smile at Elise's question. "There are a quite a few runes for protection in here yes. There is even one that is supposed to ward off death…I'm not sure how acurate that is though the one that protects from harm sounds more logical to me…" Andrew seems to like discussing runes and his eyes are bright even as he smies nervously and blushes slightly. "I'm Andrew Shacklebolt by the way…" He introduces himself quietly lowering his eyes.

Her attention turned away from Andrew and his book of runes Fiona looks up at Finn. Everyone is just so much taller than her! "Ancient Greek ones. Stories about the gods of Olympus. Do you like mythology?" She looks as if she might be questioning his interest based on his looks. Maybe it is because he isn't wearing a Ravenclaw tie. Housist behaviour abounds.

"No one can ward off death," Elise says with a sigh. "Everyone dies, sooner or later, one way or another." She hugs her books to her chest a little more tightly, not quite repressing a shiver. "I was thinking more… a rune to protect a woman from… from starting a family," she explains. "For my older sister. It would make a good present for her."

Finn casually nods. "My aunt used to teach it at a muggle school…she gave me a few copies of the books she used." He smiles. "I could lend you a copy sometime…if you'd like." Hearing Elise's words he turns his head, and raises a brow. "That's a present?"

Andrew frowns at the morbid topic shivering a bit himself. With a nervosu smile he looks through his book flipping the pages. "I'm pretty sure I saw a rune for infertility in here somewhere..ah hah! Here!" He turns the book around to show Elise. "Its original use was a gift to a ancient queen from one of her rivals who wanted to make sure she never gave the king a child. The rival lady crafted a rune into a peice of jewelry and passed it off as a smybol of luck and ferility the opposite of what it actually was…at least thats what the book says." Andrew blushes and sighs softly. "Maybe you could do the same…make a pretty necklace or bracelet with rune engraved into it…it might help? At the very least it will look pretty and make a good gift."

Fiona looks taken aback by Finn's offer at first or maybe it is something he says. She blinks and then smiles up at the older boy, "Thank you that would be interesting." Her chin dips and she ponders her own book for a while, the Greek letters legible to her. "Not what most married women wish for but understandible when one is a Harper."

Elise's brows draw together at Finn's question. "Yes," she says shortly. "It is." She looks quite interested in Andrew's information, and scoots a little closer to him to peer at the page he shows her. "That's exactly the thing," she says. There is a glance up at Fiona, a flash of some intangible sadness across her face, and then she looks down at the book. "Can I copy this down?" she asks, already fumbling for a blank piece of parchment and a quill.

"Sure go ahead." Andrew nods to Elise with a shy smile turning the book slightly so she can see it easily and copy the rune down. He glances to Fiona and Finn holding the book up while Elise works to copy the rune down.

Finn frowns. "Oh…I didn't mean-" anxiously scratching the back of his head, he finds the words. "I didn't mean to offend you." he looks to Andrew "That's very kind of you." he says simply.

"What?" Fiona looks up at Finn, confused by his confusion. "Something wrong? Finnigan wasn't it?" She doesn't offer her own name up just yet, instead being focused on trying to help the poor Hufflepuff.

Elise scribbles the rune down, copying it very precisely, and taking a few notes in her neat handwriting. "Thank you," she tells Andrew. She holds up the parchment by one corner and carefully blows on the ink to dry it out. "No, it's fine…" she tells Finn. "You probably didn't know." She blows a little more. "Anyone know a student who can carve?" she asks.

Andrew nods and closes the book tucking it away again. "No problem." He says blushing again as Finn calls him kind and Elise thanks him. He looks to Finn with a nervous smile. "I just enjoy sharing information….I tend to remember almost everything I read so its nice to find something that someone else finds useful or interesting." He turns away and looks around the hall once more.

Finn shakes his head to answer Elise's question and turns back to Fiona. "Don't worry about it." he smiles. "I didn't catch your name?"

"Gabrielle knows everyone," suggests Fiona, presumably to Elise. "I am certain she will know someone who can work with wood." Hugging her book against her chest the first year tilts her had back so she can look up at Finn again. "Oh? I'm Fiona (who's last name might be changing but we'll just pretend she said it here)." And like Shacklebolt and Harper she too is a pureblood, only Irish. Though the accent is faint and lilting as if she were from the north of Ireland rather than the Free State.

"Good traits, for a Ravenclaw," Elise compliments Andrew. "Hopefully this /will/ help. Are there any specifics about materials that it works best with?" she asks, just thinking of it. "Maybe wood isn't good enough. Hm." She nods to Fiona. "That she does," she agrees. "Thanks."

Andrew looks a bit flustered smiling shyly at the compliment. "Thank you..hmm the closest thing I could recomend is find a wood or metal that represents the same thing or something similar to the rune. I'm pretty sure there are books on the meaings and properties of woods somewhere…then you would just need to get the right wood and have it carved…I could do some research on it if you wanted?"

Finn beams, thrilled that people actually talking with him. "Well met." he says to Fiona.

Being raised to be polite even if she is likely taking it into a direction her parents might not approve of Fiona offers Finn a hand to shake. This requires her holding the splayed book against her chest with one hand, a feat she cannot acomplish for long given the sheer size of the tome. "And you too, Finnigan. A good Irish name."

"Yes, Andrew, thank you," Elise says. "I would very much appreciate that. Meanwhile I'll ask Gabrielle if she knows anyone." She tilts her head toward Finn and Fiona. "It /is/ a good name," she agrees. "It's lyrical. Fiona is, too."

Finn shakes Fiona's hand and smiles, his ears turning slightly pink. "Thanks." He turns so he look at everyone easier. "So…are all of you in Ravenclaw then?"

Andrew nods to Elise with a brighter sort of smile. He looks thoughtful probably already thinking of what books to search. He is so cuaght up in his thoughts he doesn't see the large Slytherin boy and his two friends that come up behind him. The larger one pushes him down roughly onto the floor and Andrew lets out a yelp as he lends on his hands and knees. Glancing over his shoulder he groans softly. The large boy probabaly a seventh year laughes and kicks at him. "Whats wrong Shacklebolt? Where is that fighting spirit you family is so famous for?" The other two sneer and the one on the left adds. "He isn't much of a fighter though is he…filthy little cowardly bookworm…it no wonder he doesn't have any friends." They laugh and start aiming kicks at the prone boy who curls into a ball to minimze the damage they can do.

Fiona is small but her book is large. Without a thought, or perhaps without much of a thought she heaves it at the nearest bully. Nothing like being hit with a Herculean story right? Used to fighting with much bigger brothers she is willing to throw herself into the fray and defend Andrew. "Get lost you…" the words which come out of her mouth are not English and probably not terribly nice either. If any of the others know Gaelic they'd recognise that she called them 'slug farts' which isn't that insulting unless you're eleven.

Finn narrows his eyes at one of the older Slytherin boys"Ah, they've let the trolls out I see." He hastily pulls his wand out and points it threateningly at them.

"STOP IT!" Elise screeches at the Slytherin boys. "PROFESSOR! PREFECT! HEEEEELP!" Elise herself pulls out her own wand and aims it at the biggest Slytherin boy. "Flipendo!" she yells. Her voice shakes, she's pale as a ghost, and her knees are knocking together almost audibly beneath her robes. But the spell flies true and the boy is knocked a few feet away.

Andrew peeks up just in time to see one of the boys go flying. The other is hit with a book and the last one flees the scene. Clearly the three are not the brightest and as soon as Elise starts yelling the other two regain thier senses and scatter as well. Andrew unballs himself and winces as he stands up. "I was hoping to avoid that part today…thank you…all of you." He smiles nervously but gratefully eyeing the direction the three bullies ran off to. He picks up his bag and winces again his stomach had been hit pretty hard and he likely has a nasty bruise forming.

"Are you hurt?" Fiona tries to brush any dust off of Andrew's house robes. Her movements efficient after years of de-dusting herself. Seeing that he is not bleeding she looks around for her book and picks it up. "Nicely done Elise," the first year compliments her elder housemate. "I don't really know enough magic to think about using it. I just thought of what I had to hand." That clearly having been her book.

Finn exhales, and stows his wand away, muttering about forgetting the spell. He gives Andrew a worried look. "You alright?"

"Always yell for help," Elise says to the others in general, sounding breathless. Her hand is still shaking, enough so that she has a bit of trouble putting her wand away. "And use your head." She grins tremulously at Fiona. "Quick thinking, to throw the book at him." She nods at Andrew, then frowns. "Do they do that often?" she asks.

"I'm fine thank you. I think my stomach might be bruised but I'm not bleeding so its alright." Andrew smiles nervously turning back to the group. Elise's question gets a look of surprise before he manages an answer. "Every other day…" He says with a shrug looking at the floor. "I guess I'm an easy target but at least they never bother me in the library just the hallways on my way to class or meals."

Call for help. Fiona makes a mental note of that. "There is nothing right about being a bully," she declares. "And nothing you do makes them behave that way, Andrew." She even knows his name! Probably because her brother made her remember the names of all the Ravenclaws, Eniri is odd like that. "They behave that way because something is wrong with them. You're not even a Muggle, so it isn't about that. It's about them being…stupid."

Finn frowns "You should tell someone, Andrew…a professor, or a prefect. They can't keep doing that to you." Then he smiles to Fiona. "The Norse mythology book would be a great projectile, remind me to lend it to you just in case." he adds.

"Let's take you to the Nurse," Elise says, adopting a tone of voice that isn't to be argued with. She'll try to snag Andrew's sleeve and if successful, will start pulling him along. "She'll fix you up." She nods vehemently, agreeing with Fiona. "Fiona's right, they're awful, and you shouldn't have to put up with it." Another nod toward Finn. "Absolutely," she concurs. "Tell the Nurse, for starters."

"It isn't right no…but I don't see what telling someone will change…" Andrew sighs managing a weak smile. "Still thank you for the help. I really appreciate it." It is then he is grabbed by the sleeve and pulled along by Elise. His eyes widen in surprise and he protests rather weakly. "I'm fine really…its just a bruise…it will heal…okay fine." He sighs softly and gives up following the girl obediantly anyway.

"I'll go find one of the prefects," Fiona tells Elise, who seems to be in charge. She turns towards the great hall, assuming it will be easier to find one when dinner starts. Pausing her head swivels towards Finn, "It was nice meeting you, Finnigan."

Finn smiles politely to everyone and waves. "Nice to meet all of you. Take care." he adds with a nod to Andrew, and proceeds quietly into the Great Hall.

"Thank you!" Elise tells Fiona. She gives a final wave to Finn, and then begins a lecture about why confronting bullies is the most logical way to prevent further bullying.

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