(1938-10-19) Staying Out
Details for Staying Out
Summary: Gage panics when he messes up his Hogsmeade visit, and him and Kaleb meet.
Date: October 19, 1938
Location: Communal Stables, Hogsmeade

It's Saturday morning. A day, which for Hogwarts, means the beginning of a Hogsmeade weekend. For Kaleb Gamp? It means just another day of the week. And now, he's exploring his new home. At least, the place he'll call home for the time being. Hogsmeade. He has been making his way around town since the break of dawn. Sure, it's not the largest of areas to cover, but he likes to get the lay of the land. Especially in the smaller areas that he stays. He has finally, now, found his way to the town stables. A place he'll possibly find himself often, when he's not at the Fawley farm.

Crap! Gage is quite disorientated when he wakes up this morning. He wakes up in the stables instead of in the castle, where he should be, in the dormitory. Crap! Once where he is registered the boy is springing to his feet, cursing under his breath as he ambles sleepily to the door of the stables to peek out into the bright daylight, peering through glasses that are skewed across his face. His clothes are wrinkled, wearing a navy blue knitted sweatshirt with black pants and an overcoat with one side of the collar flopping and the other pulled up, untidily. The soft nickering and whinnying from the horses are only at the back of his mind, a much panicked, fearful look on his face as apprehension twists its way in his stomach. And a long meow escapes as the grey cat stretches out, walking towards her person to nudge her nose against his leg.

Up the path, toward the stables, walks a tallish man. Kaleb Gamp. After all, getting to know your surroundings is definitely important. He adjusts his bowtie. "Ah. A stable. How nice." He murmurs, more to himself than anything. Especially since he's not walking with anyone. It may be morning, but he seems as chipper as a chipmunk. Not much can get this man's spirits down!

Maybe no one noticed? No one notices him anyway. Gage worries over going back to the castle, wondering if he should – or maybe it’s better to stay away. His head is pulled down as his gaze drops to the feline, and the cat manages to cause a small twitch of his lips that doesn’t linger for even the slightest. He flops down to the stable floor on his knees, petting the top of cat’s head and along her spine. In turn, Shadow Mist purrs as she nudges her head up into his hand, tail flicking up in the air. The boy’s eyes are glazed over and a bit misty as he lifts his head, looking towards the approaching man. His hand lifts to adjust his eyeglasses, straightening them out unconsciously. Damn! Now there’s a witness that he was here! Gage turns and dives behind a stack of hay. Only in his haste his arm smacks into the frame of the stable, which causes the boy to swear out as he moves. His sweatshirt snags, and rips off the navy blue fabric as he falls to all fours. His very not so stealthy hiding is still completed as he crawls behind the hay.

Was that a voice Kaleb heard? He approaches the stable and peeks inside. "Hello?" He calls out. "Anyone in here?" His eyes slowly move from side to side, taking in the place. After a moment, he steps in. "Horses…wingless. Of the kind that muggles ride as well. Huh. Well, this is definitely a good place to keep in mind." He says, once again, to himself. His accent is, obviously, not British. It's definitely from 'Across the Pond', though whether that means he's American or Canadian is another story.

Gage might be trying to hide, but Shadow Mist does not. She meows out in protest as the petting stops, walking around in a circle and peering up at a new face. She meows, loudly, up at Kaleb, forever friendly and wanting, craving attention. Always. Her tail sweeps in the air, raised up behind her, and her ears flicker. Gage pokes his head out, his blonde hair tousled and messy, as he stares at the man. Not a word escapes the boy, however, letting the cat socialize.

Kaleb kneels down and coaxes the cat over. "Well, hello there, kitty cat! Are you looking for friends?" He grins and scritches behind its ear. "Well now, it must be fun, frolicking with the horses. I bet you have a grand ol' time around here." He chuckles softly. He glances up a moment later, to see Gage's head staring at him. "And this must be the mystery person. I hope I didn't scare ya!"

Another meow escapes the cat as she approaches Kaleb. Her head nudges upward into his hand, and she steps, her back arching as she intends to cause his hand to rub over the length of her back. She meows, ears twitching and turns around to do the same in the opposite direction, to slide his hand over her as she stretches and steps.

Gage watches the grey feline and the man, a scowl having formed on his face, but which has begun to ease a little. Thoughts run through his head, as if this man was a spy for the school, looking for runaway children. Damn it, shut up, Gage, he hisses internally at himself. Not that it matters, Gage is already terrified of what’s going to happen to him when he returns. There’s really no point in hiding anymore, so instead Gage rises up from behind the haystack to lean his arms over the top. He is silent, just watching.

Letting his hand arch over the back of the cat, petting her gently, Kaleb watches the young man, apparently a student, as he backs his way from behind the haystack. "You from the school?" He asks, seeming to not be aware of who this young man is. He stands. "I'm Kaleb Gamp. Just moved to the Fawley Farm for the time being. Still getting accustomed to the goings ons of the area." He explains softly, a little smile on his face.

Gage interjects when he asks if he’s from school. “Hogsmeade weekend,” he says in a voice so low it’s barely audible, but his Irish accent is thick all the same. He /would/ be allowed to be here at this time. It wasn’t like he stayed out all night… Well, /he/ doesn’t know that. He’s just going to make sure that the man knows that students are allowed off campus this weekend. Gage shifts as he lifts himself up a little more as he mentions the farm, but his hands still lean against the haystack. “Yer…” Gage hesitates cowardly but manages to mutter out, “Seen de farm?” A flicker of interest flashes in his dark blue eyes.

"Ah. Hogsmeade weekend. That explains it." Kaleb smiles. "You all are lucky. There was no town where I went to school. Heck, there wasn't anything, really, except the school. Middle of nowhere, it was! And cold sometimes. But ice schools are like that." He says, as if an ice school is a common thing. "Oh, I've seen it. It's a marvellous place. Absolutely marvellous!" He nods and smiles. "For a magizoologist like myself, there's no better place!"

Gage drops his gaze to the feline, watching her as she flops down onto her belly. She breaks her purring to let out a meow, rolling onto her back with her paws curled, offering up her furry belly for pets. Gage, remaining where he is by the stack of hay, lifts his eyes to the man again. He’s silent for so long, only toying with the questions he wants to ask, his eyebrows creasing as he thinks. Finally, he utters, “Thar’s a school made oyt av ice?” He’s curious, even if he’s nervous, biting his lower lip. But then he has to ask, because they are creatures he’s really wanted to see again. “What aboyt de thestrals on de farm?”

Kaleb grins at the cat, chuckling slightly. But his attention, once again, turns to Gage. "Oh, yes indeedy. An ice school. It's where I went. Good days. Fond memories of that place." He nods a little. He watches the boy curiously, however, as the next question eventually gets asked. "The thestrals. Well, they're as thestrally as ever." He chuckles at his own little joke. "I'm looking forward to working with them a fair bit myself." Which indicated that he, too, can see them.

“Yer…” Gage starts unconsciously but trails off as he becomes aware of his voice. Since he’s already started to ask, he finishes it, if a bit more apprehensively, “…Get ter work wi’ dem?” There is no hiding the interested look that flashes across his face, but then he’s dropping his gaze to the cat again. He inches around the haystack, lowering into a crouch as he does so, and holds out his hand while his arm rests on his knee. The boy lets out a sound that resembles a meow, which catches the feline’s attention as her ears twitch, her head turning to look at the boy. Her maw opens wide as she meows loudly, protesting getting up, but is then rolling around and springing to her feet and over to him to receive scratches at the nape of her neck.

"Sure. There's fascinating creatures. They generally get a bad reputation, but there interesting. Plenty of people, however, can't see them." What Kaleb doesn't express is that he thinks it's both a blessing AND a curse to be able to see them, considering how it is that people can see them in the first place. "I remember this one time, I was feeding a little thestral foal some meat, it nearly took my fingers off, it was so eager to eat!" He chuckles.

Gage would love to have a magic cloaking that made him invisible to all save those he trusts. Alas, he does not. His eyes are drawn downward as he scratches behind the cat’s ear, and eventually scoops her up into his arms. He kisses the top of her furry head as he stands, snuggling her close and comforted by having her in his arms. When he looks up and to Kaleb, he nods his head slowly. “Oi…” he begins, hesitating before he continues, “want ter see dem again.” He hugs the grey feline as he moves around Kaleb, trying to keep what distance he can, until he can peek out of the stables again. He swallows nervously.

"You can…actually see thestrals?" Kaleb thought that the boy had just been interested in thestrals. This changes things a little. "Oh, my young man, I'm sorry." He doesn't even need to know who it was that died, he is sorry none the less. But then he smiles. "Well, perhaps you'll get a chance to see some again soon. Even, perhaps, those on the Fawley Farm. I'm hoping to start to work with them soon, get them comfortable with me."

Gage scowls as he glances back at the man. Don’t, a voice hisses in his head. He’s certainly thrilled that he can see such amazing creatures, but he really doesn’t want to think about /why/. So he decides to share, to lead him away from wondering about the reason he can see them. “Oi got ter feed dem,” he says, and his lips quirks into a very weak smile even if it doesn’t last for long. He’s quite proud of the fact he got to feed those creatures, but he suddenly grimaces when he realizes what he just said and he looks to the ground as he cusses. After a second he looks up and adds in, “Oi wus dare… for camp.” Which is true, but he’s not the best at hiding his expressions and he’s clearly hiding something.

Kaleb smiles at Gage, tilting his head a little bit. "Got to feed 'em, eh? Quite the experience, isn't it?" He seems to not be phased by the scowls and such. "A camp, eh? Well, that's as good a time as any to feed them. Good thing the camp has them. You can't find very many thestrals that are actually used to humans. There's a good plenty wild thestrals. I don't know many who'd want to go up against them in the wild!"

Gage is relieved that he doesn’t question that, and shows before he lowers his head. He rests his chin over top of the cat, hugging her and lets out a sound that could have been a laugh when she licks his chin. But then he’s looking outside again, and swallows. His eyes travel to the water as he bites his lower lip, and then as he steps to leave he turns back to Kaleb, giving him a look as if to say bye, but instead only lifts his hand to wave before turning and walking off.

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