(1938-11-06) Courting Beatrice
Details for Courting Beatrice
Summary: At lunch the night after the Bonfire Douglas tries his best to win the affections of Beatrice Nott, but fails and nearly ends up being pounded by the Beast instead. Medusa ponders becoming a Ravenclaw.
Date: 6 November 1938
Location: Great Hall

The hierarchy at the Slytherin table makes manipulating where people are sat much easier for Medusa, but then she is the reigning queen. Somehow Lucian finds himself several seats away from her and Ria - Medusa will blame this on Ria's presence of course but that is just a convenient excuse. Beatrice is the dippy buffer zone along with a rather huge boy who looks closer to twenty than seventeen and fits his moniker of The Beast. This leaves a nice empty space near Medusa should Douglas decide he still wants to sit with the enemy.

When Douglas does amble in, he scans along the line of people at the head of the Slytherin table, gives Ria a vague nod of acknowledgement and Beatrice a crooked grin and a waggle of his eyebrows. "Mind if I join you?" he asks her, heedless of Medusa on the other side of the space. "I saw you from across the room and had to double check you were real, and not something leftover from my dreams."

Beatrice looks up at Douglas and then over at her cousin, you can practically see the hamster trying to decide which way to go in his little ball. Is this a game? Left? Right? Sunflower seeds! When she sees Medusa nod Beatrice beams at the Gryffindor and pushes The Beast. "Shove off," she tells him and pats the space the boy vacated. With a grumble The Beast lumbers over and drops down next to Medusa, setting his heavily laden plate down in front of him with a thunk.

Medusa glances at The Beast and pulls her cutlery out from beneath his elbow. Once it is safe she begins to dish up food for herself and if her foot should happen to connect with Douglas' leg beneath the table so be it, that's what he gets for sitting directly across from her.

Douglas glances sidelong to Medusa with a flicker of a grin before turning back to Beatrice and reaching forward to grab a slice of bread. "So, did it hurt?" he asks her solemnly. "When you fell from heaven?"

"I didn't fall," says Beatrice, clearly not getting the point. She pokes her tongue out as she tries to get her peas to stay on the tines of her fork. "I did trip on the stairs earlier when a stupid cry baby fat mudblood stopped suddenly. Stupid cry baby fat mudblood."

"I'd offer to kiss it better, but… y'know," Douglas insists, with a conspiratorial nod towards Medusa. "Maybe later."

Medusa pours herself some juice and rolls her eyes. Whatever she was going to say is cut short and replaced with a huff of annoyance as The Beast reaches past her to lift up a dish of food and bring it closer to himself.

"Madame Spleen gave me a plaster so you don't need to do that." Beatrice looks up at Douglas, having given up on her peas and just stabbed a few with the end of her fork. "Did Medusa tell you she's been reading my book for tips? It's from France."

"Whoa, steady on, big man," Douglas notes to the Beast, reaching over to steal a few bits from the platter before they're all gone. He even goes so far as to put some on Beatrice's plate. And, with a slight grin, on Medusa's. "Tips on what? Cheese?"

For some reason Medusa becomes rather busy rearranging the food on her place. Maybe if she is lucky her mashed potato will resemble a famous witch and she can get out of dinner and escape to a life of short-lived potato based fame.

Beatrice offers her thanks for the food and begins to cut up the gravy covered faggots. "It isn't a book on cheese. I'm not supposed to have it because it is a muggle book but it is very good and has lots of bad words and juicy sexy bits." She eats a few bites then asks to Douglas, "Do you want to borrow Lady Chatterley when Medusa is done?"

Douglas takes up a mouthful of his dinner, gravy dripping from the potato on his fork. "Doesn't sound very French," he notes, one eye on Medusa and a grin creeping across his face. "Sure, why not. I'll have to ask her when she's done reading it all. You know me, I love books." Ahem.

Medusa kicks them both this time, not the least bit amused.

"It isn't really French but it is banned," Beatrice lowers her voice as if she were sharing a great secret with Douglas, "because he used the word cunt." She then lets out a yelp and drops her fork onto the table. "Ow!"

"OW!" Douglas adds a moment later, poking his tongue out at Medusa. "What? I didn't say anything!"

Smiling sweetly over at Douglas, Medusa asks, "Sorry, did you say something to me? It is so noisy in here."

"You did so. You said words. Everybody says words. Maybe not Ogg so much but everybody else says words." Beatrice has forgotten about the dent in her shin and is eating her supper. "Do you think an animagus could teach a dog to say words?"

Douglas returns the smile as best he can. "No, no, we weren't talking to you. Just about you." He nudges her leg under the table with his foot, sliding the toe of his boot up to the inside of her knee. "I don't think dogs have got the right mouth to say words," he finally tells Beatrice.

Medusa shifts a little on the bench and tries to pay attention to what she is eating but every so often she sneeks a peek over at them or more specifically at Douglas.

"What about monkeys? They have mouths shaped like us. Do you think somebody has ever snogged a monkey?" Beatrice grins a little, "Aside from The Beast's mum." It is almost as if little bits of Medusa had rubbed off on her somewhat thick cousin over the years and those bits rear their nasty head occasionally to break up the inane chatter.

"Oh, probably," Douglas responds, not entirely listening. He should probably hope the Beast isn't listening either. Instead, he's got an eye on Medusa and a grin tugging at his lips as his foot creeps up to her thigh. "Hey, Malfoy, how's your dinner?"

Medusa squeezes her legs together, trapping Douglas' foot. "It is lovely thank you." She looks down at what is on her plate and realises it's all rather random and she looks at The Beast who is busy reaching for another platter. While the big lug is occupied Medusa buries her unwanted sprouts in his heap of mash.

Beatrice grins, thinking Douglas is going to be mean with her. Being mean is her favourite game. "Beast! Your mum snogs monkeys! Douglas says to too!" She makes monkey noises pretending to scratch at her under arms and then follows those up with kissing noises.

Douglas mmrfs as his foot is squashed, then suddenly looks up as his name is mentioned. "Uh… whoa, hang on, hang on. I never said that," he backpedals. "Um. And I think monkeys are great!"

The Beast looks over at Douglas and Beatrice and cracks his knuckles then tilts his head popping the vertebrae in his neck. "What was that you said about my mum?"

Medusa sips her juice, enjoying watching Douglas squirm and Beatrice…well be Beatrice. She reaches under the table with her other hand and slips it up underneath his trouser leg.

Douglas rolls his ankle to try to free himself, giving Medusa a Look of warning, then glances back to The Beast. "She's a lovely, lovely woman," he insists solemnly. But then… he can't help himself. "At least that's what I thought of her last night."

Beatrice looks at Douglas, "Why was The Beast's mum here last night? Did she go to the bonfire?"

The Beast growls and pounds a meaty fist against the table, "Take it back."

Medusa parts her legs so quickly that Douglas' foot goes into freefall. "No Bea, The Beast's mother wasn't at the bonfire. But Douglas did disappear for a while." She smiles over at him as if daring Douglas to get out of that one.

Douglas glances to one side, judging his escape options. He shovels another mouthful of his dinner in, just in case it's his last, then wipes his mouth. "Hey, she's got good taste, old man. You should be pleased."

"Did she wear a pretty frock?" Beatrice eats a little more and then says, "You can always tell when someone has good taste by the frocks that they wear."

Medusa picks up a gravy boat and pours most of what is left in it, which is a lot, onto The Beast's food. "You should eat up. Douglas is a fast runner so you'll need your strength to catch him and then you'll need the warmth from the food to hide from me because if you touch him I will make your life hell."

Douglas glances to Beatrice, then grins faintly. "Must be something like that, aye," he agrees, one eye still warily on the larger boy. "More bread?" he suggests, lifting the bread basket to offer to him.

The Beast looks between Douglas, whom he clearly wants to hit, and Medusa, who he knows will follow through with her threat. With a growl he yanks the bread basket from the Gryffindor's hand.

"Always knew you were a good lad," Douglas allows, giving the boy a chance to save face. "Good sense of humour."

Beatrice beams over at The Beast. "Cuthbert is always good except when he is bad and hits but if you snog him he will hit people for you." She looks at Douglas and frowns, "Maybe not you but he would for Medusa."

"Now I know why Ravenclaws read at their table," mutters Medusa.

"I'll bear that in mind, Nott," Douglas agrees amiably, faint grin tugging at his features. "And, hey, Malfoy, if you read at the table then maybe you'd finish that book sooner and we could all get to borrow it, eh?"

The Beast turns red. "Thanks," he mumbles then bows his head and starts hoovering up his food only to gag and spit out a half eaten brusell sprout.

"Since you're so keen I'll say in tonight and make sure I finish the book," Medusa promises solemnly. "I know how avid a reader you are and I wouldn't want you to miss out." She gives The Beast a sidelong glance as he spats out food. "That is revolting." She pushes her own plate away.

And that's Douglas's turn to kick Medusa under the table. "Meet you in the library, then?" he suggests, raising a brow.

"I should get the film from my camera back on Friday," Beatrice tells the table, or rather Medusa. "Do you still want me to give you the photo of your boob?"

"I'll take that," Douglas offers helpfully, giving Beatrice a huge smile.

The Beast washes his mouth out with several glasses of milk and then sulks off, hitting a sixth year on his way past.

"Ow!" Medusa glowers at Douglas. "What did I do?" She rolls her eyes at Beatrice. "Must you blab about everything? I swear sometimes I wonder about you Beatrice. Are you sure you weren't swapped in the hospital? Is there some clever Weasley that really is my cousin?"

Douglas sets his main plate aside as the desserts appear, eyes lighting up as he spots a creme brulee, and he huffs and puffs as he picks up the hot dish to transfer it in front of him, then blows on his fingers. "It's all right, Nott. You know I still fancy you anyway, right?" he notes to his companion with a huge grin. "Brains are for Ravenclaws."

Unaware that her cousin had been kicked Beatrice responds to Medusa's question with, "I don't know but you usually do something." She grins when the puddings are revealed and fills a small bowl with jelly and ice cream which she then tops with whipped cream and sprinkles. "You shouldn't fancy me it will make Medusa sad and I'll have to listen to her making even more noise at night because she'll be crying."

"Beatrice!" Medusa hisses her cousin's name. She looks towards the large door wondering if maybe The Beast didn't have the right idea. Unwilling to go just in case she has to do damage control the Gorgon pulls a plate of pie over and begins to pick at it with her fork.

Douglas chews on the inside of his lip to prevent a grin, casting his eyes upwards as he takes up a spoon to break the crust on his dessert. "Beatrice," he mentions quietly. "You know you shouldn't talk about what people get up to at night. It's sort of private."

Beatrice mulls this over or maybe she is just eagerly giving her attention to her dessert. "Right," she says absently in between bites, paraphrasing Douglas, "it's private."

Medusa takes a couple of bites of the delicious warm pie, the sharp tang of the sour cherries and the sweetness of the sugary syrup they were baked in pulls her out of her mini fugue for a few minutes. It is so good she trails a finger through the syrup that seeped onto the plate and sucks it clean.

Douglas nods, flicking a quiet grin as he takes a mouthful of his pudding. "Right. So you should tell me in private instead."

Looking up from her pudding Beatrice seems confused. "Medusa said you know all her secrets." She looks back and forth between her cousin and Douglas. "Are you two fighting? Is that why you want to snog me?"

"I'm deeply, deeply in love with you, Nott," Douglas tells her, deadpan. "I'm just terrified of what Malfoy would do if I dumped her. Ours, sadly, is a forbidden love, Beatrice. I shall weep myself to sleep at night, thinking about you."

Medusa, who is happily eating her pie still, snorts around a mouthful of fruity syrupy goodness.

Beatrice, bless her, doesn't always get sarcasm. She pats Douglas' hand gently. "That is very sad but you are right. We can never be. You will have to love me from afar. I know it will be hard on you, but it is the right thing to do." She gives him a kind, understanding sort of smile.

Douglas wipes a tear from his eye. Or something like that. "It'll be tough, but we'll make it through," he agrees solemnly, nudging Medusa under the table once more with his toe. "Malfoy, your cousin is the very heart of generosity and understanding."

"She is the epitome of grace and goodness," says Medusa as she looks up and licks her fork. "I am but a pale imitation of her perfection. A wan little flower basking in the glow of her beauty." And laying it on a bit thick. "You are so very brave to soldier on without her adoration, Douglas."

Beatrice beams at the pair of them, "I know you two will help one another get through this." She then picks up her spoon and giggles, "I love it when jelly is all wibbly wobbly on a spoon." With a 'gnomph' sound she closes her mouth over the spoon and slowly pulls it out from between her lips, leaving the jelly in her mouth.

Douglas swallows, glancing to the ceiling to bite back a laugh. "Mmmhmm," he squeaks out, then clears his throat. Manly voice. Manly. "You're a sport, Malfoy. Helping me out like that. Ice lolly?" he offers, glancing down the table at the desserts. Not that there are any ice lollies immediately available.

Medusa eats another forkful of pie and then licks her lips. "I don't know, maybe after a bit more reading," is her response. "Reading can be so educational after all."

"And why are we here, if not for an education," Douglas agrees, gesturing around him with one hand, encompassing the whole school with the movement. "Academics, and their practical application."

"I like books with more pictures than Medusa does. She's really clever," interjects Beatrice as she finishes off her dessert. Once done she hops to her feet. "I promise Selwyn we could do some sno-," she looks at Douglas, "I am sorry. I forgot you were in love with me." Beatrice pats his shoulder, "Medusa will look after you. She likes you, you know."

Medusa gets to her feet as well. "I'd best get on with my studies then," she says with a smirk. "You can send word if you're crying into your tea and need me to comfort you, Douglas."

Douglas pulls himself upright, glancing between Beatrice and Medusa as though making a choice. He shrugs, reluctantly offering Medusa his arm. "I'm crying into my tea now. Shall we?"

Forgetting all about Douglas Beatrice makes a Bea-line (ha!) for the Hufflepuff table where she meets up with a boy only to leave with him a moment later.

"I'm not sure if I will be enough woman for you after your great love for Beatrice," delivers Medusa, completely deadpan. She has to walk around the end of the table to reach Douglas' side and take up his arm. "Maybe some intense study would help."

"I'm sure you can comfort me in my sorrow," Douglas agrees, flashing a sidelong grin. "Somewhere quiet for study, then? Lead on."

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