(1938-10-08) Chess Match
Details for Chess Match
Summary: Playing chess and chatting.
Date: October 8, 1938
Location: Club Room, Hogwarts
Related: -

A club meeting had come and gone, with just Alphard left at the table in the center of the room. The brooding Sixth Year Slytherin was a picture of concentration as he leaned over the long-suffering wooden boards into which countless generations of vandals had carved their names and initials and hearts and hates into. The center of his focus was the wizard's chess pieces set out in front of him. They were a vicious bunch. One side contained a nasty crew of thieves and murderers, grinning and laughing and talking about how much they were looking forward to slitting some throats. The whites were cast in the semblance of heroic and historical Aurors. For a pack of heroes, they looked about as vicious as the first group, and were even louder with their threats of violence. Playing with himself wasn't unusual for Alphard. The crew of sycophants and bullies he tended to associate with, weren't the brightest. Also when he played by himself he didn't have to lose.

Clubs, one of those things that professors are urging her to be a part of and yet she still hasn't. At least she found the room? Not that there's anyone around - in the clubs sense anyway. That aside blue eyes do light upon the lone figure within and she raps lightly at the door to announce her presence.

Artemis has been busy with studying and school work. Her signs and protests have been long since abandoned now, ever since her talk with the younger girl. Her book bag, bulging full of books and supplies, is at her hip while she carries her thick, and well tabbed notebook in her arms. Skipping along the corridor, Artemis stops at the door leading into the club room, and shifts her notebook in her arm to knock on the door, respectfully announcing her presence before she peeks in to see if she’s disrupting anything. With the near empty room she’s going to assume there is no club going on, but as she enters she smiles brightly as her bright blue eyes land on the Slytherin. “Hi! Oh, you need someone to play with,” she offers. She quickly turns to Eibhlin, her smile bright and friendly as she beams at the Ravenclaw until she looks worried. “Oh. Is there going to be a club starting?”

It took a couple of seconds before that arrogant face deigned to lift up, and his dark eyes took in Eibhlin with a suspicious squint. Subconsciously his hand raked back through his messy mop of dark hair, pushing some of it out of his brow. Just about to say something, a second face appeared and promptly stumped him up. "What? I don't -need- anyone." It was an instinctive response, archly delivered. Obviously Alphard Pollux Black didn't need anyone for anything at all. Even playing a game meant for two people. Still, a second later he allowed: "But if you -ask- me real nice, I suppose there's room. And no. There was a club meeting, but it's over with. I don't think any other is scheduled for today."

Eibhlin blinks, turning a glance and a touch of a smile towards Artemis as she arrives. "I don't th..," is the beginning of her reply to the other girl's question before Alphard speaks. His commentary earns another blink of blue eyes and a semi-questioning glance towards the boy before a light shrug of a shoulder lets any arrogance on his part slide for the moment. "It is polite to ask," she reminds the girl, "But," she points out to the boy, "If I remember correctly chess is generally played by two though."

Artemis smiles warmly as she turns toward Alphard, starting for the table. “I love playing wizard’s chess,” she announces, letting out a giggle. “I don’t have the pieces,” she says sadly, shaking her head so that her blonde curls flutter against her face. “I only have a regular chess set. Would you mind a partner to play against?” Her bright blue eyes turn back to Eibhlin, stopping before she finishes the approach to the table, and gestures towards the table. “Unless you would rather play? I bet you’d be more of a challenge.”

"-If- you remember correctly? You aren't even sure, Shine?" A little eyeroll and a derisive snort followed. With a languid motion of bored detachment, the boy leaned back in his chair and folded his arms over his chest. He'd rolled his sleeves up to his elbows, revealing a pair of pale skinned and sinewy muscled forearms, and some thick wrists for his age. There were bruises and scratches aplenty, some rather big and ugly. He'd taken some damage not that long ago, obviously. But then again he -was- a beater (and a bully who got into the occasional fight). He sighed, eyes going from one to the other. "I -suppose- you could play. One of you. Whoever! Just sit down already. I'm playing the White pieces." It was not up for debate.

The murdering scum that made up the black pieces, scowled in the girls' direction. "We gotta answer to lil girls?! Phey! That's not fair!"

"I was trying to be nice," Eibhlin replies to Alphard, mild annoyance clinging to her voice, "And not call her stupid, which, I'm sure you aren't," she adds the last to Artemis. A shake of her head follows to the girl's question, "No, that's quite alright," she assures her, waving the girl towards the board. "You play. You asked first and I'm honestly terrible at chess."

Artemis purses her lips as she looks from Alphard to Eibhlin. But she smiles brightly, and beams as she says, “Thanks,” to the Ravenclaw. Her smile brightens as her blue eyes twinkle, finishing her approach to the table with a bounce. “Great,” she says as she sits down opposite Alphard. “I always choose black, so I guess it works out.” She giggles, but eyes the dark pieces warily as her smile fades as she ponders. She lowers her head closer to the table, her hands against the edge. “You do you know how to set yourselves up, right?” Her gaze flicks up onto Alphard, offering him a bright smile. “I guess white goes first.”

"I'm not sold. Are you sold on that line, Meliflua?" Alphard 'innocently' asked Artemis, his dark eyes suddenly sparkling with a cruel tease. "See, How I see it.. if anyone has to -try- to be nice, it means they really don't want to be. It means somewhere deep down they've got this voice in their head saying mean things. Like.. 'she's so -stupid-'." His gaze flicked to Eibhlin again, smiling, and the sound of his voice was a near purr. "No reason to deny it. Anyway. Sit down already, won't you? You're distracting me standing there! I need to think!" Focus, scowl at the pieces with absolute attention. The black pieces set themselves up proper, the Queen sniffing at the suggestion they -wouldn’t- know how. One of the Knightly Aurors went: "Pick me already!" The other shouted louder: "No pick me!" With a roll of his eye the boy announced his first move.

Eibhlin moves to a chair, dropping down into it between the pair so she can watch the game unfold. "How I see it is that you just don't try," she comments in return, crossing her arms. "And the fact that it bothers you to have someone stand and watch, well that just implies insecurity," this added with a smug smile towards the Slytherin. A smile which softens to friendly as she looks towards Artemis, "Good luck."

Artemis blinks and tilts her head at Alphard, glancing to Eibhlin. “I don’t think she wanted to be mea- Oh.” A bright rosy colour rises into her cheeks as she reaches up to sweep a golden strand from her face. “You were teasing,” she murmurs as she registers this. Her lips purse as she stares down at the board, focusing on her own move so that she doesn’t have to think about embarrassing herself. A giggle escapes her as she looks upon the board, shaking her head, finding the taunts funny rather than annoying. She lets out a breath and focuses herself to concentrate on the game, her hand hovering over the top of the pieces out of habit, but ends up pointing out across the board as she gives an order to her side.

"Please! Just because you're insecure about everything doesn't mean -I- am," the boy announced with cocky confidence. Even if as the game progressed through the first few moves, he was falling behind. Unaware of it, he started to nibble on his lower lip. Some of the arrogance bled away, replaced with the look of a boy who really didn't want to lose.

"AAAAH! OOOH! My leg! My leg!" They gave it their all as they fell. Wizard chess was gleefully violent in the best of times, but these pieces were designed to appeal to boy from that notoriously unstable Black line. So knees were happily broken, throats were slits, spines were cracked down over knees.. All to enthusiastic cries of pain and victory all around, the pieces taking great pride in as grizzly and -loud- deaths as they could extract. "You killed me! Woe! Horror.. the horror.. THE HORROR!" There was a reason he didn't play this in the library.

Then things started turning around, it seemed. "Yes!" He breathed under his breath, unable to help himself. He was still nibbling his lip, totally enthralled.

Artemis just giggles at the banter between Eibhlin and Alphard, as if it was all in good fun. She looks up to give the Ravenclaw a smile, tilting her head as a single shoulder lifts. She flips a hand around in front of her, gesturing towards the Slytherin as her eyes move towards him. “I think someone would make a great entertainer when he’s out of school.” She lets out a breath and smiles down at the board, countering his movements after a couple moments thought. Until she purses her lips and starts slowing down in making her moves, making a couple of mistakes that will probably cost her. “Okay, this is what we’re going to do,” she states, blowing out a breath and announcing her next move matter-of-factly.

"You.. that's.." Alphard was at loss of words, frowning down at his King as the poor bugger got his head chopped off. "Bah. You just got lucky!" With a huff he shifted uncomfortable in his seat, and he was still chewing on his bottom lip without really thinking about it. A bit longer, and he'd taste blood. Damn it! That victory had seemed all but certain halfway through the game!

With a flick of his wand and a loud: "Reparo!" The broken bits started to reassemble.

A look in Eibhlin's direction - more a scowl if truth be told - dared her to make any comment about his loss.

Eibhlin watches the game, showing some interest, if not much in the moves taken by each side. She turns a grin towards Artemis when Alphard's king finally falls. "Good job," she comments to the girl, turning blue eyes towards the Slytherin, a touch of a smile still lighting her lips. "It was a good game," she adds for him. No, she wasn't going to comment on his loss.

Artemis is just as surprised, actually, as she orders her last move and announces, “Check…mate,” uncertainly. She watches the board suspiciously, clearly expecting a comeback until his King is actually taken out. “Oh! Oh, oh!” She squeals excitedly as she stands up, chair sliding over the floor, and claps her hands together as he bounces on her feet. “My brother’s lessons are paying off,” she says proudly. Releasing a breath, she slides a hand in front of her in a calming gesture, and glances to Alphard. She lets out a giggle, tilting her head as she looks at him. “Maybe I did just get lucky. I definitely don’t have the clever tricks you Slytherins tend to have.”

Since neither of them seemed intent on rubbing salt into his wounded pride - which let's face it, Alphard would have gleefully done to Artemis if *she* had lost - the tension in him slowly dissipated. With a roll of his shoulders he pushed away from the table, leaning back to take in both of the girls. "Yeah.. I guess.." he told Eibhlin, falling into line simply because if it had been a -good- game, then it wasn't so bad to have lost it. "Fiiiiine. It was a good game. Congrats, Artemis." His eyes briefly sought out the younger girls' in a rather reluctant acknowledgement. He even used her first name. Then he looked to Eibhlin. "You wanna play?"

Eibhlin shakes her head, "You did great," she tells Artemis, "Congratulations." The redhead's smile brightens when Alphard finally gives in and congratulates the younger girl as well, but it’s an expression that falters somewhat when he offers her the next round. "We could just say you win and call it a day?" she suggests.

Artemis blushes as she smiles to Alphard, and then to Eibhlin, and murmurs, “Thanks.” She presses her lips together, a soft ‘hmm’ escaping her. “I can understand chess, at least. If I could only cast a spell as well maybe I’d be a decent dueler.” She looks between Ravenclaw and Slytherin. “Are either you in the dueling club?”

"Pfft.." Alphard scoffed, though when his offer to Eibhlin was refused, he promptly started to pack down his pieces. A few of them protested:

"Aren't you gonna at least have a rematch?!" That was the King, squinting up.

"Shut up!"

"Really? Here I thou-" and everything else was lost as the wooden box snapped shut. Alphard scowled at the wood, as if he could still hear the chatter of the playing pieces from inside. Slowly he lifted his gaze again. "Uh, what? Oh. Yeah. I'm in the duelling club. Have been since my first year. Duelling, Quidditch Team and.." here he paused, eyeing the pair. Then added the last one, of some significance considering their blood status: "Magijugend." With a grunt he started pushing himself to his feet. "You learn all the good spells in Duelling club before they teach it to you in DADA. Some you don't even learn there at all."

"I told you," Eibhlin starts, "I'm terrible at chess." Knowing him he'd rub it in her face when she lost, so easier to just not play. Right? Right. "No," she replies to Artemis with a shake of her head. "I'm not," though a glance turns to the Slytherin at his list of clubs, the last in particular causing a flicker of a frown.

Artemis watches Alphard as he packs up the game, smiling softly. It takes her a second before she realizes he’s speaking to them again, which causes her cheeks to heat up with a bright pink colour. She shakes her head and hastily starts, “I’ve been considering dueling, if only to learn my spell work better.” She heaves a heavy sigh. “But I would hate,” she says matter-of-factly with a twirl of her head, “to have my grades suffer because I joined a club. How do you balance all of that?” she asks of Alphard as he ticks off his extra-curricular. She doesn’t seem phased at all by the mention of the Magijugend. She lets out a little ‘hmm.’ “Do you have any clubs?” she asks as she looks to Eibhlin. She turns her eyes onto Alphard. “You’re awfully busy, but maybe you can help me with some of my spells?”

Alphard just rolled his eyes in response to Eibhlin's protest, a statement as loud as any words of his could have been. Apparently she didn't even need to play for him to rub it in! He must've caught her little frown, too, because immediately a superior smirk appeared, cruising his lips and showing a hint of pearly-white teeth. Paying attention to Eibhlin meant he mostly missed Artemis' blush. "I guess some people just don't have what it takes. I'm taking all the Auror N.E.W.Ts, too." Known as one of the toughest workloads possible. His arrogance didn't allow him -not- to slip that in, too. "I guess I just spend more time studying and less time mooning around, than most. Or perhaps I'm just smarter. Anyway, speaking of.. I'm gonna go do some of that studying." His move to leave was briefly stalled by that last request for assistance by Artemis. His mouth opened, refusal on his tongue. For some reason it didn't come out. "Uh.. I don't.. know? Anyway, I gotta go. Bye."

No, she probably didn't need to play for him to rub it in, but it would likely have been that much worse. To him Eibhlin doesn't comment further. A shake of her head is her reply. Artemis, "No, not currently. They keep telling me I should, but.." Well it hasn't happened yet. "At least he didn't say no?" she suggests as the boy heads on his way. "But speaking of studying, I have some that I should be getting to too."

“Oh, wow!” Artemis exclaims as she turns her eyes onto Alphard. Her expression is clearly impressed, her eyes widening as she gasps. “Auror!” But she doesn’t have an opportunity to say anything more, except that she beams at his response to her request for help. “Take care of yourself,” she says as he leaves. She smiles warmly as she looks to Eibhlin. “Aren’t they just so admirable? Luke’s taking Auror classes too. That’s such a tough course load.” She blows out a breath, lifting a hand to brush her hair off her face. “Scary to think how dangerous the career is. Oh, yes, don’t let me keep you. Take care of yourself,” she offers with a smile.

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