(1938-11-24) Deep Conversation Over Tea
Details for Deep Conversation Over Tea
Summary: After speaking to her cousin Fiona comes across Eibhlin, or vice versa, while trying to find the best cake for Mopsus. The two girls share tea and discuss magic, Muggles and half-bloods.
Date: 24 November 1938
Location: Ravenclaw Common Room
Related: Kinship Concerns

Little Fiona peers inside the common room from the corridor, checking to see if it is safe to come in or not. Seeing none of the older students who have her worried and spending more and more time out of the tower she inches slowly into the airy room. One hand twiddles her brown hair as her blue gaze darts anxiously about, slowly she moves towards the table where the usual treats are laid out for the students to nibble on in between breakfast and lunch at the weekends.

Eibhlin would hope she's not one of the ones Fiona is worried about, if she knew the girl was worried about some of them at all that is. The redhead sits at a table beside the one that holds the treats looking over notes for class. Reaching for the tea cup beside her notes she wrinkles her nose when she finds the contents cold. Looking up as she moves to fetch a refill for herself she notices the younger girl, offering a smile and a nod in greeting, "Fiona, isn't it?"

Startled like a rabbit caught in the sight of a torchbeam at night Fiona looks up at Eibhlin. "Aye," when nervous her accent thickens and the elocution lessons her mother made her take to sound like a proper young lady fly out the window. "I'm no' plannin' on takin' the cakes for meself, I was going ta bring one ta Mopsus."

A light laugh and a continued smile meets the younger girl's explanation. "I'm sorry," Eibhlin apologizes. "I didn't mean to startle you and I'm not your mother to tell you too much cake will spoil your lunch," the prefect assures. "Though it does make me curious what Mopsus is getting a cake for."

Fiona eyes the pretty cakes and biscuits. "I wan' him to help me. There be people here in the tower who -" she takes a deep breath and forces herself to speak properly. "There are some who've been talking about starting a new club, an anti-Magijugend club. Like for duelling. To use magic against people they think are bullies." Swallowing thickly Fiona flicks her very visible Magijugend pendant with a finger and looks up at Eibhlin. "I'm scared of them. They pulled wands on Mr Pringle and he is frightening. What will they do to me? Julian said he was sorry but he's…he's just a boy and….so I wanted to give Professor Mopsus the nicest cake and hope he would help me because he is lovely and I wish I took divination."

Eibhlin ahs, nodding as she refreshes her tea, adding a good bit of milk as well. "I see," the mention of the formation of an opposing club pulling her lips into a line. Tea?" she offers, "Or would you prefer cocoa?" the question posed she waits to pour any more before an answer is provided. "I'd like to think that there may be some sort of misunderstanding there. I don't think it was a good choice, but perhaps they pulled wands on Pringle because he's frightening?" She might not have noticed the pendant if it weren't for the girl's attention to it herself. "So…" she pieces events together, "You think because you are Magijugend, they'll come after you?"

"I like tea," says Fiona. She carefully selects the best and most delicious looking cake and puts it on a plate so she can give it to Mopsus later. For now she will sit with Eibhlin, enjoying the older girl's protection of sorts. "I didn't see them pull their wands, I just heard people talking about it. But I was here when Myrus and Gage were talking about starting their secret club to stop the Magijugend and use magic against bullies."

Eibhlin nods, pouring a second cup for the girl. "Sugar and milk?" the next obvious question she'll fix it as requested before taking up her seat again and offering it over to the first year along with a chair. "I see. I wasn't there myself so I can't really speak to what occurred, but truly I don't think magic is always the answer." Clearly the information about the formation of this secret club has her concerned. "If Julian said he's sorry I'm sure he is, but I will keep an ear out about this club," she assures.

Sitting like a little lady, Fiona rests her hands on her lap. "Milk and one sugar please." As the talk of tensions resumes her hand creeps back up into her hair to twiddle. "He said he was sorry for the," the girl pauses to try and find the right words, "impression he gave me of his having seen me as a bully because he was unaware of how the Magijugend was luring in younger and more impressionable students like me." Which judging by the sound of it Fiona didn't take as much of an apology. "His girlfriend put him up to it. I don't think he heard much of what I said but at least he pretended to listen and didn't roll his eyes."

Eibhlin nods, listening as the girl speaks though she does take a moment to shuffle a few of her pages together so its all in one neat pile instead of spread across half the table. "I take it you had read his petition then?" she assumes. "Perhaps he simply meant it was intended for the older students and he didn't know that anyone so young as you had joined?" A thought as she tries not to take up for either side too much. "Though if I can ask, what made you decide to join?"

"He didn't do very good research," sniffs Fiona. "I joined because some of my friends are in it, but also because I do believe magic should be hidden away from muggles. They don't mean to, but they can hurt us badly in their ignorance. Not just in the past with the persecution of wizarding kind in the hands of the ignorant and superstitious but today too. Families become torn because muggles start to think they are the same as all wizards once they are given a wand." The tiny girl sips her tea. "Just because I may fly a broom doesn't mean I should."

"Well, as I was just saying to Black the other day the Magijugend are rather secretive themselves," since they're talking about secret clubs, "I'm not saying it was right, but maybe did what he could and jumped a little too far in his conclusions?" Eibhlin suggests an alternative, sipping at her tea as Fiona gives her reason. "True, ignorance and superstition can lead to misunderstanding and persecution. History has proven that as you've said, but do you think the opposite might be true too?"

Fiona sips her tea, holding the cup with one hand as her hair twists and twiddles around the index finger of her other. "The big Black, Alphard?" There are others closer to Fiona's own age. "We aren't that secretive. Anybody can join you just have to get permission from the headmaster. I don't like it when people make assumptions. I wouldn't pretend to know what the Mud Club does because I'm not a member. My father says making assumptions are bad. When you assume something it," she adopts a tone of a slightly gruff man, "makes an ass out of you and me." In case Eibhlin didn't get the joke she explains, "Because of how it is written."

Eibhlin nods, "Yes," she confirms, "Alphard. And you're right. When I took the time to ask I was able to learn a little more about them. I haven't made up my mind yet," she admits then. A nod following, a smile pulling at her lips for the girl's imitation of her father. "Sounds like your father is a wise man," she replies. A pause a she takes a sip of her tea, considering her next question. "It sounds like you have some very strong opinions of muggles," she notes, "I did have the chance to witness a Magijugend interview and they asked about both muggle-born and half-bloods. If I may, what do you think about that?"

"I like Alphard, he's saved me from muggle bullies before." After dropping that bombshell, Fiona sips her tea. "I feel sorry for half-bloods, but not all half-bloods are the same. If your gran or grandad was a muggle then you're still a half-blood but if your great-gran or great-grandad was a muggle you aren't. Some are half-bloods because one of their parents is a muggle. They're the ones I feel sorry for. Having to be split between two worlds. Some are only shown the muggle way; for them coming here must be like being in a land where the language is just similar enough for something to register but mostly everything is foreign."

Eibhlin doesn't comment further on Alphard though she does nod a time or two to show she's listening as Fiona explains her views. Her expression quizzical, "True," she confirms about where the lines are draw as to half and pure blood. "But you feel sorry for them?" she asks, that's where her question remains. "Do you like stories?"

The small girl's eyes widen, "I love stories." Questions about half-bloods and muggle born are ignored in light of the prospect of a good story. Fiona loves stories.

Eibhlin smiles, she was rather expecting that answer. "Well, then I have a story to tell you," she says, holding a finger up as she takes a drink before beginning. "Once upon a time, up in Northern Erin a good ways west of Belfast, there was a man and his daughter. They were farmers and while they had others to help them with the farm it was still very hard work. The man was very sick and working the fields grew harder and harder until he couldn't anymore and eventually he passed away leaving the farm to his daughter." Its a sad beginning yes, but many others start in similar ways.

"But one day a handsome young man arrived looking to help in exchange for a place to sleep and a good warm meal," she continues with a smile. "The woman agreed and the crops she'd planted grew bigger and faster than any around. It was almost like magic. You see, she was a muggle and knew nothing of such things," the redhead explains. "But after a time she and the handsome man fell quite in love and were married. Soon enough they had a little baby, but on the day the baby was born the man disappeared."

"The little girl was raised the only way the mother knew, as a muggle. She learned how to cook and ride a horse and went to a muggle school. Along the way there were 'accidents', which as you know can happen as magic manifests in a child. But no one knew, no one was there to see and explain. At school the children made fun of the girl, they bullied her because her family was different, because her father had gone away. But then one day, around about her eleventh birthday…"

There are stories like these and some are stories Fiona has heard before, but she still listens attentively, sipping her tea and twiddling her hair as Evie tells the story. When the older girl pauses she says, "It must be hard to not know who your father is but your mother was very brave. Are you a Catholic or a Protestant?"

Not all children would pick up so quickly. "You're a smart girl Fiona. I was raised Catholic," she offers the answer with a smile. "Coming here was strange and different, scary and exciting all at the same time. Like you said, things were similar but so much was foreign. But you know what? In some ways things weren't so different. At home others made fun about my father and here they did the same about my mother."

"I'm from Lough Foyle. There are farms not far from us. Catholics and Protestants. My family has lived along the lough for hundreds of years. When I was little I'd sneak off and play with the other children. A priest saw me once. I thought he was a wizard at first but then when I didn't know about the Jeezoos he said I would burn in hell." Her fingers stop in her hair as Fiona remembers her encounter with the priest. "I was scared and ran home to ask Nanny about it, she is a squib. She said the priests used to burn wizarding folk. Did you worry that your magic would make you burn?"

Eibhlin can't help but laugh a bit at the girl's tale. "I think they tell children that to frighten them so they behave," she leans in to assure. "From what I've learned I don't think he would really send you to burn simply because you didn't know." A shake of her head follows the question however, "No, until I came here I didn't know I had magic, not really."

"Some of my ancestors have been hurt by the muggles, the religious ones with their funny beliefs." Fiona chews on her bottom lip. "Father doesn't like muggles. He says they ruin things because they are greedy and always want more and that they don't look after their own people." Her head bobs as she counts the generations, "My great-great-gran used to try and feed some of the starving muggles during the Famine but they hurt her one day when she ran out of good to give them so she stopped."

Eibhlin nods slowly, "Some people are like that," she agrees, "But aren't some wizards the same?" she ventures to point out. "Sounds to me like your great-great-gran was very generous, and I'm not saying it was right that anyone should hurt her for it, but if you were starving and didn't have any food to eat… Desperate people will do desperate things they say."

"We don't have any dark wizards in our family tree, but some do I suspect. Some of those twenty-eight families." Fiona brings her cup to her mouth and sips her tea. "I'll tell you a story now if you like."

"I'd like that," Eibhlin replies to the sharing of stories with a soft smile, hands cradling her tea cup as they rest of the table.

Fiona sets her cup down. "There was a boy, a lovely lad. Bright and clever. He liked adventure and books in equal measure. He had little brothers who looked up to him, a sister who he would give rides and read stories to at night; his parents could be stern at times but they loved him and taught him to respect the world he grew up in, a world of magic. As the boy grew up he was sent off to a special school where he suddenly had many more playmates not just his brothers or cousins. Being a nice boy, one who cared about others and protected them - sometimes to his own detriment, he befriended a lonely girl. She was pretty and clever. As they grew older her hold over him became stronger and she pressed him to break with family tradition, knowing it would hurt him and his family. He came home for summers and everyone saw that the older he became the less like the lovable brother and son he seemed to be. Then finally the witch made him chose between her; his best friend and the girl who needed his love and protection and his family. Being a protector of the weak and more vulnerable he chose her."

Eibhlin sips her tea as she listens. "I see, and this girl she was muggle-born?" she guesses. "He must love her very much. And," here she hesitates just a touch. "I'm sure he still loves you as well."

"I don't think he does or if he did he would never have chosen her," says Fiona sadly. "She already had a family, just one who couldn't do magic but that wasn't enough for her. Just like those muggles that hurt my great-great-gran she was greedy." She small girl looks over at Eibhlin. "And that's what I think about muggles and magic. It would be better if they were given a potion to take their magic away so they could live in their world and we could live in ours and nobody's families would ever be torn apart again."

"Are you certain?" Eibhlin asks carefully, "Or are you assuming?" she adds, putting just a bit of emphasis on the last word given previous conversation. She's somewhat taken aback by the younger girl's position on muggles and magic. The surprise may show but she's not about the berate the girl's opinions either. "I suppose I can see where you'd come to that decision, but then what about someone like me?"

Fiona resumes her hair twiddling. "He chose to abandon all of us knowing if he went with her that he would be disowned and we would be forbidden to ever speak to him or see him again. I am pretty sure he didn't love us enough if he did love us at all." She lets out a heavy sigh. "You are an unfortunate by-product of your birth. The one to blame there is your sire, for he was never a father to you. Your mother did admirably considering the circumstances. You should try and find him and learn about the blood in you. Different blood has different…power as it were."

"I have been," Eibhlin assures Fiona that she is in search of her father. "He's proving.. difficult to find." That said she aims to leave the discussion of her own family behind. "Do you think, perhaps, that knowing all that, he might have chosen her in hopes that your parents might try to see her the same way he does? To accept her as a witch instead of seeing her as a muggle?" Something in those words giving her something to consider as well it would seem.

The girl has spent a lot of time considering her brother and his rationalisations and in the end because Fiona is not Aidan all she can do is shrug, "I do not know. But they had a huge row the summer before he finished school and they told him then they wouldn't accept her. When he finished school he never came home, just went off with her." She looks down at the cake on the plate, that long ago chosen cake for Mopsus. "He brought shame on our family. We are all a thing of ridicule because of his actions. Shame is hard to live with when you are not the one who's actions have caused it, isn't it?" Her gaze lifts to the older girl, the one who bore the shame of her own father's behaviour.

"I'm truly sorry for your loss Fiona. It sounds like you miss him quite a bit," Eibhlin replies, reaching out to rest what she hopes is a comforting hand on the girl's shoulder is she lets her. "Its only hard if you let it be. I can't speak for anyone else, but I can tell you I won't judge you for your brother's actions. Perhaps you could write him?"

"No. I cannot speak to him nor write to him. If I see him on the street I must cross it and pretend I have not seen him. I will not bring more shame on my family." Fiona's mouth turns down. "I hardly know him, how can I miss someone I only saw a few times a year after my fourth birthday? He made his bed. Now he must lie in it." She gets up slowly from her seat only then dislodging the kind hand. "I am going to go take Mopsus this cake and see if maybe he has an idea of how I can not be so scared of Myrus and Gage and their friends. I'm sorry about your sire being a baddie, you should send your mum a letter telling her how good she is."

Eibhlin nods, "I understand," perhaps not completely but she can understand where the girl might believe that's what she has to do. "Writing the letter doesn't mean you have to send it," she points out, pulling her hand back to her lap as the girl stands. "Good luck Fiona."

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