(1938-12-10) The Unspeakable Book
Details for The Unspeakable Book
Summary: Rowle cousins Andromena and Anthony try to determine the best course of action after finding a particular book.
Date: 1938-12-10
Location: Hogwarts Library

Anthony is carefully reading. A steady perusal of a book. The library tag announces it as 'Five Witches in Dorset', but the script looks different- a heavy germanic gothic type. Tony's lips are silently moving as he's reading, and every so often he pauses to make a little note.

Andromena does not want to interrupt her cousin as he reads, but she does want his company and so decides to simply set herself up in a chair opposite of where he himself is seated. There is a book in her hand as well, but as Andromena is holding it against her chest with one arm, the title remains hidden. With interest, she peers toward what Anthony has before him, lips forming into an appreciative 'o' as she does so. Her eyes then roam towards his notes, but she has a harder time reading them - they're upside down, after all.

"Reading ahead again?" Said by way of familial greeting.

Anthony closes the book, with a faint smile. "Uh, no. No, sorry! It's a fascinating bit of misbinding. I came across it the other day. A folio of German text in the middle of a rather interesting historical discussion of Dorset in the 18th century. Um, I think it might be a part of the Unauslichsprechen Buch. Which really _should_ be in the restricted section."

Her brows lift with interest. No knowledge is more alluring than forbidden knowledge! A shame she couldn't read German. But then…she could always see what her cousin was willing to part with. The joy of learning was sharing it with another person that would appreciate it, no? It was either that or horde it like a lunatic miser, cackling in glee because you knew so much above all the rest of those pathetic peons crowding your mighty knees.

"I am sure you'll do the right thing in the end," implying that Andromena would not say anything should Anthony decide to finish reading before bringing it to anyone's attention. "But that reminds me, I was wondering if you'd mind tutoring me in French?" Her mother had spoken it to her when she was younger, but it fell out of use when she'd come to Hogwarts. "I want to surprise mother with it. I think it would make her really happy."

Anthony gives a faint nod, "I… um, still write home in it actually. And yes. Yes, I would love to. There's a few interesting books in the library in French too, of course."

"Wonderful, thank you!" Andromena chimes happily. She'd supplement her learning by reading those texts he had mentioned, though she'd have to seek them out first. Leaning closer to her cousin, Andromena is unable to help herself. She really wants to know. "So…what's it all about?" A slight uplift of her chin to indicate his book.

Anthony pauses, "Um… well, I suppose, the Dark Arts, really. I mean, the extract here is about the sacrificial rites performed in certain magics, without thankfully giving any details of the actual _spells_." His nose wrinkles, "But there's also lots of stuff about the sorts of people who get tempted."

Sacrificial rites? And did that little nose wrinkle mean Anthony was disappointed, or relieved? For Andromena's part, she would have liked the inclusion. She had a decidedly morbid mind despite her profuse aversion to violence. Who could rightly say how the mind worked? The interest remained avid on her face. "Bookworms that have no sense of life outside their precious pages?" From anyone else it would have been mocking, but Andromena was only be playful.

Anthony gives a faint little laugh, "Well, yes, actually. They're one of the categories. The academic with an overwhelming curiosity is listed." There's a slight flush to his cheeks, "Which is me doomed, I suppose. And then there's the Proud, and the Angry or Vengeful, and the Power Mad and the… disappointed in Love.. and the desperate."

"That's just about everybody," Andromena contends. How many people out there were truly just…plain ol' happy? Andromena would count herself as such, except she was of the curious sort, too. Perhaps not as curious as her cousin, and maybe just a bit more narrow minded. "Still, I'll keep my eye on you. If I start to notice any peculiar behavior or missing first years I'll seek help immediately." Another tease, delivered with a friendly grin.

Anthony laughs, "Honestly, I'll point it out to the librarian soon." He gives a virtuous little smile, "And I promise when I start sacrificing virgins to Dark Gods, you'll be the very first to know!"

"Remember," Andromena said, clasping her hands together before Anthony. "We don't sacrifice family!" Because wouldn't that just be the worst way of finding out? 'Hello coz, fancy a fly? What, why am I tying your wrists…listen, funny story, that…' "Anyway, if it were me, I'd read it through first, too."

Anthony clicks his fingers in disappointment. Another moustache twirling villain moment foiled. "I promise. But honestly, I'm rather more wondering about one thing." More seriously, he leans forward, and says with a frown, "If this bit of this book is in a perfectly ordinary book, where are all the rest of the quires? The stuff which might be dangerous?"

Andromena remains close, her dark eyes growing a touch serious as Anthony frowns. He had a perfectly good point. There was, of course, every chance this was just one of those one in a million flukes. Part of her hoped this was so. But another part, that steadily growing adventuresome part said that it would be just fascinating if that were not so.

"There's no harm in…checking things out," she suggested.

Anthony tries out a few more words. Helpful ones. You know. As if seeing if they fit. "And I suppose it would be…. irresponsible… to worry the Librarian or Headmaster with unfounded worries. Before we… you know… made sure?"

Andromena follows Anthony's line of thought, nodding sagely. "They're busy enough as it is," she assures. "If we determine it's just this one, it's not as if anyone else need know you hadn't only just found it." And if there were more, then…that was a bridge that could be crossed when they got to it!

Anthony admits, "I should _probably_ hand this one in first, before we look for anymore. Probably. I mean, I'm not sure I _want_ all of this book in the same place. But it certainly shouldn't be in a book which was…." And he flicks through to the front page, to where someone has inscribed the flyleaf, "On the reading list for Magical History 1st year classes only a decade or so ago."

"True enough," Andromena concedes, looking pensive. Magical History for the first year? My, my. A really rather odd place for such a decidedly dark bit of text. And laying about where just anybody could find it. Interesting. "I guess that makes sense. And the faculty would know what to do with it all. Better than us, anyway."

Anthony clears his throat, "Not _quite_ sure who to take it to, actually. I mean, the Librarian is the obvious person…." His voice tails off a little.

So, what then is the problem with the obvious person? Why does he hesitate?

Why the hesitation indeed? Andromena could not readily guess at her cousin's apparent discomfort. Chewing at the corner of her lip she asked, "Would you prefer taking it to a professor, or Mopsus?" Who was the head of their House.

Anthony says slowly, "Because the Library staff _should_ know about this sort of thing. So, whilst it probably is an oversight, there's just the slightest possibility…" He ponders how to phrase the next bit, "… a possibility that it _is_ known about, and was still left on the public shelves."

"Deliberately? Maybe as some sort of test?" Andromena was not so certain the school would advocate such an under-handed means of catching students by way of entrapment, but then again, what did she really know? The librarian seemed a sweet enough person besides. Leaning back in her chair, Andromena brought a hand to her chin. "If it was intentional, I can't say for certain I see any sort of gain behind it for the person that made it so."

Anthony stops for a long moment, leaning towards his cousin, and looking carefully around. When he speaks next it is in a bare whisper, "What if it's a trap? To get people curious?"

"That's sort of what I was thinking," she shares with him, also speaking in a hushed tone. "A test to see if students will report the error or not. It's one thing if it's some firstie that only speaks one language but…" Andromena gave Anthony a pointed look. He could read and speak several different languages. The librarian would likely even know as much, given the frequency her cousin came her to check out various books. "It still seems…far fetched. Would the school really do something like that?"

Anthony shakes his head vehemently, "That's not what I mean." He looks around, "Look, it's a book about the Dark Arts, or people who did them, or that sort of thing. What if it's supposed to sit here as a lure to the stupid and weak willed? To join them? I mean, I know Madam Patil has only been here a few years, so she might have not found it yet. But what if someone _before_.."

"Oh, oh," Andromena breathes, seeing Anthony's point at last. That's what you get for assuming that, for the most part, the world really was full of nice, do-goody people. "I see what you're saying now." Some dark wizard seeking to earn themselves young, gullible minions? Or maybe virgin sacrifices, but Andromena was getting ahead of herself. "Still, it requires work on - just for the example - your part…and a great deal of patience on theirs. There's every reason to assume it would have eventually been found by Madam Patil, and the plan," derived by whoever! "Would be foiled. More still a student could find it, return it, or just plain not get it."

Anthony nods, "I accept all of those drawbacks." He ponders, "Most likely a book with that would need some form of enchantment to avoid that happening. But just the _possibility_ that it's the case opens all sorts of cans of worms. I mean, who do you _tell_? I _Certainly_ don't fancy telling the Headmaster about it!"

"No," she agreed. "We could always send out feelers? Make vague remarks to the librarian or other faculty to see how they respond? Or, if you're feeling really uncomfortable, pass it on to a prefect and let them deal with it?" Andromena eyed the book in question, a far bit of curiosity alighting within her eyes. Dampened only by the fact that she couldn't just readily tell her cousin to damn it all and do what he desired most. Did she really want to potentially tell Anthony to set off down the path to notoriety, dark wizardry, and most likely a terrible stay in Azkaban? Surely not!

Anthony takes a deep breath, "I think _probably_ either Madam Patil, or Mopsus. That would probably be right. And once we've got it in safer hands, _then_ worry about the other quires?" He looks a little uncertain, seeking guidance.

"I think that sounds fair. Maybe bring in Mopsus when we," since she wouldn't let Anthony do it alone if he didn't want. "Take it to Madam Patil. Afterwards, if we find more…then we find more! And we'll act accordingly. But oh," she says, lifting a finger into the air. "Maybe I should go to Mopsus over you? I didn't read anything from the book, after all. In any case, you can always say you didn't realize just what it was until after the fact."

Anthony ponders this, then shakes his head, "No. I can't get you to do it. Firstly, because it's not _right_!" A beat. "And secondly, because they'll then ask, since you don't read German, how you know it's subject is what it is!"

Andromena looked a little let down, but then she perked up once again. "Well, I can still go with you. For support." The Rowles were no different than most pure-blood families when it came to sticking with their kin, it was just that the two cousins actually were friends as well…as opposed to merely tolerating one another because they (big sigh), unfortunately shared a familial bond. That Andromena was also pretty interested in seeing how the mystery of it all unfolded also played its role, it shouldn't be denied. She reached out to pat his hand. "I think this will all be fine, though. We'll probably laugh later over how paranoid we sound."

Anthony gives a faint grin, "Yes. Yes, I'd love that. A bit of moral support sounds just the thing!" He glances around, "I _really_ don't want to leave this book lying around for just anyone to find. Although I suppose the number of foreign language speakers in Hogwarts can be counted on… well, one hand?"

"Probably," she mused, attempting to think of any other students that were multilingual. "Just let me know when you're ready and I'll be there!" Andromena began to get to her feet, once more peering toward the book. "You could either…bring it with you, for safe keeping, or return it to exactly the place you found it." What would be the chance of someone taking it back out so soon?

Anthony ponders, "Probably best to check it out, I think." Then a pause, "Lets take it straight to the Professor. It's probably best that way!"

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