(1938-10-14) The Sounds of Silence
Details for The Sounds of Silence
Summary: Medusa is working on a silencing potion during breakfast, Niko comes in and they have a long whispered chat then Douglas comes in and ruins everything! That is so what happened!
Date: 14 October 1938
Location: Potion's Classroom, Hogwarts

Medusa has been getting in extra potions practice, she has NEWTs at the end of the year, so the sight of her in the classroom when Niko arrives ten minutes early for his first thing after breakfast potions lesson on a Monday might take him by surprise. Platinum hair twisted up and into a makeshift bun held together by her wand she is perched on a workbench, head bowed over the cauldron. Her over robes are off, set on another workbench along with her books for her first few lessons. She is sat in such a way as to be side on to the door, revealing the profile of her figure wrapped up as it is, in her snug-fitting jumper and too short skirt, heeled button up ankle boots on her feet and those all important white knee socks.

Niko enters the potions classroom, his gaze falls on Medusa for a second, though he doesn't seem to give it much thought. He simply moves to his normal seat, sitting his items down as he starts to prepare his work area, pulling out his research notes and books, sitting them on the table, "Good Morning, Malfoy." he words slowly and softly, his tone warm and friendly as ever. His gaze moves over the items he has just sat out, making sure he has everything.

"Shhh," says Medusa in a stage-type whisper, covering her cauldron with a pillow. Slowly, ever so slowly she pulls the pillow back and peers into the copper cauldron. When nothing burps in her face she sinks back down onto her stool with relief. The pillow is set down carefully onto the workbench so as not to disrupt any of the bottles of ingredients she has laid out. Medusa puts a finger to her coral painted lips.

Niko puts his hands up apologetically, to Medusa and softly sits down at his spot. His hands move and pick up some of his research notes as he opens a book, his fingers moving between the book and his notes slowly, a few strands of his amber hair falling his face, which only get brushed aside as he continues to compare notes with his book, before quietly opening the other, doing the same with that.

The hyped-up seventh year silencing potion she is working on requires silence, which is why she came in early. But Medusa has questions she also wants answers to. Spinning carefully on her stool, one eye on the cauldron, she rises to her feet setting all her weight on her toes. She wobbles a little and has to raise her arms until she gets her balance. Then it is a tip-toed walk over to Niko, made all the more tricky by some of the loose stones on the floor. A foot catches one of those loose stones just as she nears him and Medusa goes flailing forward, eyes wide, mouth open but silent. Catch me Niko!

Niko catches Medusa moving towards him out of the corner of his eyes. He closes his eyes for a moment, before sitting his notes down quietly on top of both of the open books, turning quietly he goes to face Medusa only to do so right as she goes to fall, as quietly as possible he gets up to catch her and does so, his eyes moving to her cauldron, holding her in her arms and moving to put her back up on her feet.

Afraid of ruining her work Medusa grabs hold of the sixth-year, clinging to him with one hand going to Niko's waist and the other scrabbling up his chest until she can find purchase and with his help get to her feet quietly. This would undoubtedly look awkward were anyone to walk in, thankfully nobody does and it will never ever be known. Up close Medusa's floral perfume with its peppery undernotes becomes obvious; it is a scent which suits her in that it is feminine but has a bit of a bite. Carefully, slowly she lowers her hands and smooths down her clothing only to have to lean in to whisper into Niko's ear, "Thank you. It is a silencing potion."

Even though Niko just caught her, his touch is soft, his hands on bother her sides, when she manages to get her bearing back, he smiles at her warmly, removing his hands from her sides. He stands there for a moment before she whispers, he leans in and whispers in a quiet but warm tone, "You are quiet welcome, I figured it was such." he says with a small nod to her, before looking back at his notes and books, then back to Medusa. His hand moves up and brushes the few stray stands from his face that had falling over his eyes when he caught Medusa, now just looking Medusa with his bluish green eyes, waiting for her to continue.

Medusa looks around, then holding a finger up with a silently mouthed, "Aha!" she picks up the other stool at Niko's workbench and carefully with exaggerated slowness — one cannot be too careful — sets it down right close and personal to his. That done she sits herself down and leans in to whisper again. "What game are you playing, Denholm?"

Niko closes his eyes he already knows what this is about, wanting to let out a sigh, but doesn't, he whispers softly, "As I have explained, before Malfoy, I am up to no grand games or plots." he says with a small nod, the warm smile still on his face, as he continues to whisper, "If you are referring to Douglas, he is the one who choose to decline a supervised duel, I am not responsible for what damage he brought about on his own reputation." he says slowly with a small nod, there is no hostility in his tone, no malice, it is just as warm and soft as always.

Medusa eyes Niko as if she clearly doesn't believe it, because she doesn't. "Nobody," she whispers, "can be that ridiculously naive even you Niko. If you had really wanted to fight you'd have just punched him. That's what boys do." Her mouth quirks into a grin and she continues, whispering, eyes half on her cauldron across the room, "I have no worries for the reputations of either Douglas or Gerald. If you want to duel someone that badly to prove your half-muggleness is as good as my family fine. We will get Flint to set it up. I need to practice my wand work anyway." She reaches up and pulls her wand from her hair causing it to cascade down her back in a tumble of tousled platinum locks. Wand in hand she trails the end of it lightly along the side of Niko's thigh as she leans in, whispering, "Did you pay much attention in history class, Niko?"

Niko looks at Medusa slowly, before starting again "Throwing punches, would not have resolved the issue. He claimed that due to my heritage, I was not a 'Real Wizard'" he continues to whisper making air quotes, "It wasn't a matter of a fight, it was a matter of principle, what would have punching him with my fists would have done?" he asks in a whisper, "Malfoy, our issues are not me attempting to prove anything." he says offering her a small nod, "I am proud, as I have told you of my heritage, as are you. I do not parade around the school yelling that I am this amazing person, it only comes up when, individuals, feel the need to assert what they view as their superiority over me." he says still whispering, "If you feel that I have somehow wronged you and you require a duel, I will of course accept a supervised Duel, win or loose, I am not one one to tuck tail and run." he says slowly still in a whisper, "As much as the next student, I suppose." he finishes in a whisper.

She slips the tip of her wand up underneath his tie, pulling it forward slowly, out of his jumper, while watching Niko from beneath her lashes. "My family originated in France, did you learn that? You should have, all the sacred twenty-eight are mentioned in history lessons. I can trace my ancestry back to wizards who came and conquered England with the great William the Conqueror. I can go back even further than those near thousand years and into French history," her voice but a whisper. Her wand runs down the length of his tie in what could be seen as being suggestive of violence or another kind of suggestion all together. "Each generation imparting wisdom and the gift of magic upon the next for well over a thousand years," she leans as Medusa continues to whisper, "— and yet not once in any of all those many decades did anyone in your muggle family show magical ability. Doesn't that tell you something about what they can and cannot do?"

Niko doesn't react to her wand, his gaze stays focused on her as she talks, when she finishes, he says in a soft whisper, "Yes they did actually teach us that." he says slowly, "If I remember correctly similar things can be said about the Macmillan, family." he says still whispering, "Generations of Wizards, before my muggle family, showed in ability correct?" he continues in a whisper, "Then what he can and cannot do, should be very similar in relation to me. It is unbecoming for a gentleman to have his lady, fight his fights for him." he whispers slowly, "Malfoy you can keep your history lessons, I don't need them. You can continue to tell me how you are so much better then me, but actions speak louder then words, and Douglas chosen his actions." he whispers softly with a nod.

She starts to laugh and then quickly presses her lips together, eyes going to her potion. When nothing untoward happens in her cauldron she looks back at Niko and whispers, humour in her voice, "Why bring up Douglas? I wasn't even talking about him. I was talking — let me ask you this, Nikolas, if being a muggle is so great why didn't you turn down your offer?" Medusa reaches up and tucks his tie carefully back down inside his jumper for him, even gives his tummy a little patronising pat. "Why didn't you just say, no thank you I would rather stay untutored and work in a factory — because those working conditions are excellent aren't they? Or," her brows lift as she whispers, "live in the slums of Birmingham or London with the others who cannot do magic. Those poor muggles whom the muggle government and corporations really care so much about. The ones who's children die from starvation and disease because they have no welfare like we do? If you think that part of you is more important why didn't you just say no?"

Niko looks at her, still in hushed whispers, "I bring up Douglas, because that is why you are over here." he says with a small wave of his hand, "Because I have pride in both sides of my family and they are equally important to me. I have never claimed to prefer one over the other, that has been very simply an attempt to twist my words." he says with another small wave of his hand, "To touch more on Douglas, once again I ask you, his lineage is also one of the sacred twenty eight, a year my senior, if he truly is so magically superior to me, as you just claimed, by your history lesson speaking of what is capable and what is not, due to my heritage, then why did he not accept, a supervised duel." Niko says looking around bringing his hands up, as if waiting for some divine realization to hit him, "Don't feed me a line about how he didn't want to hurt me or such or make a fool of me. If he is so much better, have him prove it on on the dueling stage, with his scared twenty eight name, until he does, all he has done is further proven my point, that he is no better wizard then I." he says with another wave of his hand.

Medusa wags her wand back and forth in a chastising motion, a sly grin on her face. "I am not the one who brought up Douglas, you are. Think back. I simply asked you what game it was you were playing," whispers the Slytherin girl. Leaning in closer, her other hand comes to rest on his thigh as she whispers to Niko, "I am curious, do you argue with the halves of yourself as much as you do with others? Do you feel that the side which gave you magic granted you a gift — a boon which enabled you to tap into a world which the other side of you never knew existed? Does it bother you when you think these things? Think that for all their clever creation of aeroplanes and picture shows that what muggles really crave is magic? The ability to make people's lives better, to make them easier, somehow happier? And if you had never had that little flare of magic you would have been missing out on all of it. On flying and quidditch. Missing out on…sweet shy little Japanese girls?"

Niko listens slowly, "I never disclaimed that I brought up Douglas first, though the day after rumors start running about him, and his decline of a duel, his girlfriend feels the need to come talk to me." he says with a small wave of his hand, "Surly you must admit that hinges on a tad bit suspicious." he continues to whisper, "I grew up in a home of balance, that both the wizardly and muggle side of me was embraced. I do not have an issue with who I am." he whispers, "As far as arguing goes, as I have said before, it only happens when individuals feel the need to come and attempt to show me how much better they are. Think back Malfoy, who came to talk to who? Both time we have discussed my heritage? Have I ever approached you and forced my views upon you?" he asks in a whisper, "As far as Kimiko goes, she is my friend, a clubmate, if people wish to gossip about us, then they shall. Just like they will… how is it going about your boyfriend?" he whispers slowly, before a look of realization hits his face, "Ah yes a coward. The Queen and the Coward, quiet to combination." he says, still whispering his tone still warm and soft.

"A home of balance? Really?" Medusa nods slowly, her voice still a whisper. "So which side had to give in? You cannot have muggle things working in a magical household and you cannot have magical things working in a muggle household, not without…" she gasps softly, hand covering her mouth briefly as her eyes widen, "magic. So who was it, your mum or your dad that had no magic and who gave in and lived like the other in order to make things work?" She flicks her wand, swishing it with a flair in the air as she whispers her next question, "Did you know there are ways to take away someone's magic? To remove the spark. Do you think, knowing what you know now you would ever consider having someone do that to you or do you like magic too much to be a squib? Because that is possible. More half-bloods are squibs than wizards." Her wand hand lowers back to her lap. "Pulling a wand on someone with the intent to cause them harm takes a certain kind of meaness I find. Pulling it on someone while they are sat in a chair, speaking to you of their beliefs and opinions because you find yourself disagreeing and inside becoming angry…that gives them power over you. Makes you look weaker than them." She reaches up and twists her hair back into its knot, slipping her wand into it once more to secure it there.

Niko shakes his head, "Ah Malfoy you are searching, digging for things that simply do not exist." he whispers softly, "While my home was magical, I partook in various muggle activities, Boxing to name one, if you are certainly curious. No one gave in to the other, it was balance." he whispers with a small shrug, "I do not really care about that whole tid bit about magic being taken away, as it is just more of your ramblings, that do not really have anything to do with what we are discussing." he whispers, glancing over at her Cauldron. "Ah is that the story now? That is the story now, that poor Sacred Twenty Douglas, was sitting in his chair and vicious Niko, brandished is wand at him? Because he voiced a belief" he whispers, "He voiced his belief and I simply asked him to put his money were his mouth was, my wand never pointed towards him, I simply removed my wand, to issue the challenge, as is customary. I also clearly said that I could find a prefect to supervise the duel, clearly noting I had no intent to in the duel taking place right there." he whisper with a wave of his hand, "Keep searching Malfoy, you can try and twist and turn my words and actions, but the point remains, I issued a challenge to your boyfriend, making it perfectly clear I had no desire for the duel to take place in that room, but supervised, as per Hogwarts Rules." he says with another wave of his hand, "Also keep trying to get a rise out of me, because you have done so well so far. Keep trying to play on the only thing I am pridful about, because it is funny. Maybe you should be asking what you are playing at." he whispers shaking his head, "No I am sure you are aware you are playing a game already."

Her mouth twitches with humour, "Twenty-eight," corrects Medusa in a whisper. The pair are seated at a workbench, rather close together, whispering because Medusa was brewing up a silencing potion. "Niko, I am begining to think you are deluded whereas before I merely thought you naive. I have been asking questions to learn more about you, your way of thinking…trying to understand the thought processes of someone like you." She shrugs a slender shoulder and give her potion a glance then looks back at him. "I have no reference for knowing what it is like to be what you are any more than you have any reference to know what it is like to be what I am. You keep harping on about how we are equals and so I am asking, but no…all you want to do is try and defend your attempts to duel with Douglas who isn't even in the room."

Douglas pokes his head briefly in the door, hovering just outside in the corridor. Not literally hovering. Having checked he's not about to get dragged into some sort of class, he sidles in, knocking on the door.

Niko slowly shakes his head, "My apologies, my mind is on all of these notes that I came down her to study, to prepare for my class." he whispers, "And you have been so kind to allow me the time to do what I needed to do, just like I have made sure your potion is not disturbed by keeping my voice low, oh and also catching you preventing you from making a ruckus." he whispers, "Because yes, given our history and our oh so friendly conversations, I am sure you are seriously curious about Niko and his views on the world." he whispers softly. "And I have answered all of your questions, not just bantered on about Douglas, but once again a solid attempt to twist my words, when in actuality you have been the one dodging most of my questions." he says with a wave of his hand and speak of the devil, Douglas slips in, only getting a small nod and wave from Niko.

"Shhh," Medusa hisses over to Douglas then covers her mouth with her hands and points to her potion with the pillow next to it. Over her hands she rolls her eyes at Niko, lowering them to whisper to him even as she motions for Douglas to come in. "Your business with Douglas is your business with Douglas. I don't need to defend him or his actions," she shakes her head causing the bun (which is held together by her wand) atop her head to wobble slightly. "I am not his keeper any more than you are Janette's keeper or else I am sure you would have told her not to lie to staff and not to start fights; both of which were egregiously stupid. If you boys want to wangle wands at each other then by all means do so, if not then don't. End of." She mutters quietly, "This is what I get for listening to Meliflua."

Douglas glances to the potion, then nods slowly, heading over to stand behind the pair, leaning in to ask, "I've been replaced as your potions lackey? By Denholm? Fair play, Mister Denholm, fair play. I wish you luck. You'll need it."

Niko shakes his head, "Well considering you were not very open to my views last time we spoke, I am certain you can see why I am a little skeptical of you Malfoy." he whispers, "Like I said I answered all of your questions, give me a single question that I didn't answer well enough for you and I will gladly elaborate, on it." he says with a small wave of his hand, "As I said earlier, this all hinges on the tad bit odd." he says slowly shaking his head, not touching on the part about Silas. He looks at Douglas giving him a nod, "Macmillan." he whispers softly, "I heard the rumors." he starts off slowly, still in a whisper, "While I have my views and you have yours, it was not my intent to cause you grief, I thought you would have accepted my duel." he says slowly with a nod, looking to Medusa, nodding slowly, "And Malfoy, if your intent was actually sincere, and this was not related to Douglas, I offer a honest and sincere apology, as I stated you can see how it could be considered…" he whispers "Suspicious."

Medusa spins on her stool and tugs on one of Douglas' belt loops. "Hush, you," she murmurs, "you love making a mess with me and you know it." Her mouth quirks into a grin which fades as she looks back at Niko. "I have never been anything but polite to you, Nikolas. I asked you to leave Janette alone to help her. I have never slung insults your way but tried to offer you advice about your unique views of the world — advice which you continuously throw back at me in an accusatory manner which insinuates I have been anything but polite." She looks rather rankled. "You don't know me or anything about me or my family save which you have heard from others and yet you constantly sit in judgement of me. Assume you know my mind when you do not." Medusa starts to get up, but with her hand still on Douglas and her eyes on Niko it is not as graceful as it should be and she slips on one of those loose stones on the floor again. Teetering this time, at least, towards Douglas.

Douglas shoots out an arm to stop Medusa falling, clattering the chair over instead and making himself look the graceless, clumsy one, while Medusa's trip is made to look like she's merely throwing herself at him. As any sane woman would, right? "Look, Denholm," he notes quietly, "Don't go getting yourself into trouble. It looks bad for the house for a start, and it looks bad for you and your kind if every time there's any kind of debate you immediately whip out your wand. If I took you up on your idiotic offer, we'd both be sitting in detention right now, because you'd try flipping my wand away, and I would chin you." He pauses to rest an arm around Medusa's shoulders. "You're a decent student, despite everything. You've got a fair chance at good exam results and all that, and you're going to need it. Fact is I've got it easy and I know it. If I fail my exams? What of it. If you fail because you're too busy picking fights where nobody wins, you're screwed."

Niko lets Medusa speak, but doesn't respond, he simply turns on his stool and picks his notes his gaze moving back towards his notes, his fingers moving across certain lines which he compares to somethings in one of the two open books, he simply blows her off, not even responding to her. He responds only to Douglas, "Macmillan, I offered you a supervised duel which is no violation of the Hogwarts rules, if supervised by a prefect, which I clearly offered." he responds, quietly, "If the duel have taken it place it would have been on the dueling stag, no points would have been lost and no detention would have been given out." he continues, "I simply removed my wand as is customary to issue the challenge." he says with a small wave of his hand, "However I do thank you for your kind words, they do mean a lot. The last thing I will note, is that I do not appreciate being refereed to as not a Real Wizard." he says his tone still warm, as he nods, his fingers moving across the his notes comparing them to his books.

Of course Medusa would throw herself at Douglas, hasn't she just proven that? Her arms snake around the Scot's middle even as her gaze drops to the loudly clattering stool. She groans and looks anxiously over at her potion, trying to remember how long it needed absolute silence before setting. Maybe, if she is lucky, it will be fine. Just maybe. With a sigh she lays her head against Douglas' chest. "I spent an hour working on that. Skipped breakfast, even." When the two of them start going on about the duel again she closes her eyes and groans. "He'll never let it go, Douglas. Even if you point out to him that three-quarters of the prefects are pure-blooded, and the chances of him finding one — oh it is all nonsense anyway." She begins to pat down Douglas' pockets until she finds what she is after and pops a mint into her mouth, eyeing her potion forlornly.

"You can say that," Douglas reminds Medusa, pulling the bag of sweets from his pocket and offering one to Niko absently. "But you're a Slytherin. You're not supposed to worry about anyone but you, remember? Mint?"

Niko accepts the sweet politely, sitting it on his work bench still ignoring Medusa, he say to Douglas, in a warm and friendly tone, "Thank you Macmillan, also if I hear anyone talking gossip about it, now that I understand the impression you were only attempting to protect House Points, I will be sure to correct them."

Medusa's jaw works as she sucks on her mint and continues to lean against Douglas. "Wait, I'm a Slytherin?" She gasps as if this were news to her. One brow arches as she looks at Niko, "Do you want to know an interesting fact Denholm?" Medusa doesn't wait for him to say yes, she knows he is dying to know. "My sister Edwarlinda was a Gryffindor." So put that in your pipe, not that Medusa says as much but her look implies it.

Douglas rolls his eyes. "I couldn't give two figs for house points, Denholm. But I know the kind of grief you get from your mates when you lose them. You don't need that kind of grief. Oh, and while I remember? I'd go for the muggle kid, the Chinese girl. The snowsnake should be in an asylum somewhere."

Niko picks up the mint as he finishes checking a reference note, popping it in his mouth he sucks on it thoughtfully for a moment, "While I appreciate you relationship advice, Kimiko and I are only friends, classmates and clubmates." he says softly in his warm tone, turning and offering Douglas a soft smile, before saying to Medusa as he turns back to his notes, flipping to another page as he does so, "That nice." in his warm friendly tone, his fingers once again moving to compare notes against his reference points.

Nice?! Nice? The first non Slytherin Malfoy in Hogwarts history is nice? Medusa looks incredulous. She tilts her head back and looks at Douglas, "Do we have time to pop out before charms?" Because she could use some fresh air. Slipping away she walks over to her potion, leaving the overturned stool, and begins to bottle it up into small vials. "Maybe it will still work," she says more to herself than the other two.

Douglas simply throws up his hands, in a 'what can you do' gesture. "Got a bit of time, I'd think," he agrees, leaning against the edge of a desk. "Unless you want to go to Hogsmeade. Probably not enough time for that."

Niko continues to suck on his mint slowly, his fingers moving across the papers slowly, "Try not to get into too much trouble Macmillan." he says softly, offering him a small wave. Before his hand goes back to running across the paper slowly, as he continues to study.

Medusa gathers up her things and thrusts them into Douglas' arms so she can pull on her robes. Not that she is incapable of holding her own stuff, of course not. She just has no need to, like nearly ever. Boys are so helpful. Boys and girls who want to be her. "Come on, let's go." She doesn't even spare Niko a glance. "Hogsmeade sounds tempting."

Douglas eyes the stuff dumped in his arms, sliding it onto the desk. "Sure, but we'll miss Charms. I mean, I know I don't mind, but aren't you going to get in trouble if you get detention?"

Now why did he drop it? Doesn't Douglas know better? Medusa rolls her eyes at him and picks up her book. He is so mean to her! "I highly doubt a few minutes will get us detention, besides, I can always use my period as an excuse. Works every time." Ah the old 'Sorry sir but I got my period' excuse, age old.

Douglas just looks sick at that, wrinkling his nose. "Well, sure, but don't say I didn't warn you." He shrugs a shoulder, flicking through one of Medusa's books idly before handing it over. "I got chatted up by a posh hooker last night. Bought me a whisky and everything." Okay, so that's not perhaps entirely what happened, but it's Doug's story, damn it.

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