(1938-12-13) Afternoon Delight
Details for Afternoon Delight
Summary: Andromena, Anthony and Elizabeth talk poetry and Christmas; later joined by Eibhlin. Andromena fails at cutting cake and certain secrets are discussed.
Date: 1938-12-13
Location: Ravenclaw Common Room
Related: Refers to various logs in the plot Strange Defense

Andromena makes her way into the Ravenclaw Common Room, two books held close to her body and a somewhat aggrieved expression upon her features. So intent, so narrow her focus that as she makes her way over to a chair no greetings are given to any fellow Ravenclaws that may be nearby. Her books are deposited on a small, round table to the right of her armrest. There's a particular spot within its fluff that is well accustomed to Andromena's elbow whenever she happens to read, but it's not visited now. It's the Friday of their extra Hogsmeade weekend, though any journeys there are still some hours off. In fact, Andromena even has one more class before her school day is considered over. For now, however, she is on break.

Anthony is sitting deep in contemplation in one of the darker armchairs.

Elizabeth makes a slight grunting sound as she settles the stack of books on the nearest coffee table before plopping herself into the adjacent seat. Her trip to the Library a worthwhile exertion it seems. Though instead of spellbooks, it appears that the bookworm has picked out different sorts of language dictionaries. It's likely that the brief glimpse of Anthony's latin book the other night had inspired the interest once more. Not that they're on the cusp of a vacation. She begins to shift through them as she asks Andromena, "Which language do you think I should familiarize myself with next?" she asks, wanting the older girl's opinion. "I was thinking Italian, but I'm trying to gauge how useful that be in the immediate future."

Andromena spies Anthony even if he is doing his best to play chameleon, and gives him a companionable wave. Next, her attention swings 'round to Elizabeth and her stack of language books. There is a thoughtful, "Hm," to issue from her throat as she considers the younger girl's question.

"I've recently asked Tony to tutor me in French, but that is because both my mother and aunt," as well as grandparents, but she needn't go down that list. "Speak it. Not that that really helps you decide…My point is: do you have anyone that speaks Italian that you might to converse with? And barring that, I wouldn't worry about it's use in the near future. Knowing another language is always useful." Or so she would advocate.

Anthony says thoughtfully, "It also depends what you want it for. I mean, I learned French from Maman. Whereas I had to learn German and Latin and Greek to be able to read books on the history and philosophy of magic in the original."

The younger girl lifts a brow as she glances up first at Andromena. "French and German I already know, as well as English obviously. But you do have a point. I don't know of anyone personally that is or speaks Italian." Elizabeth murmurs thoughtfully. It's only when Anthony speaks up that she blinks her pale eyes up at him, having completely missed him originally. Either he's better at blending in than intended or she's just missed him for utterly different reasons. "Hm." The books are settled into her lap. "Mainly, it's to pass the time during the winter break." Elizabeth admits. "Though Latin and Greek could be useful…"

Andromena is so envious of the pair, what with their accumulation of languages under their belt. Here she was supposed to be studious and smart and all she really spoke was English. The smattering of French from her younger years could hardly count! The young woman snuggled herself deeper within her chair, hands clasping together upon her stomach.

"Tony's got a good point as well; there are plenty of Latin texts floating around," literally, "In the library that I would much prefer to read than their translated copies. It's useful to be able to go straight to the source, if you're learning for purpose as opposed to just personal leisure or gain."

Anthony nods, and adds thoughtfully, "I was thinking of trying to pick up Hindi or Persian for the same reasons. There must be works out there which have never even BEEN translated!"

All the several points that are made are good ones, and Anthony even touches upon the subject that is her expertise. The slightest smirk tugs at Elizabeth's lips as a single chuckle escapes, shifting through the books in her lap once more before finding one of the languages mentioned. Latin, specifically. "You mean until I get my hands on them." A rather cocky statement, but she feels it to be justified.

Anthony laughs, "Indeed. Something of the sort, anyway. But I thought Madam Patil might be willing to teach Hindi. " His voice tails a moment, "Assuming… well. "

Look at him! Persian and Hindi!! Before Andromena knew it, she'd be working at St. Mungo's and people would be gossiping, 'Oh, did you hear about that Rowle man?' 'Oh, you mean the one that explores ancient ruins and finds lost artifacts?' And so on and so forth and her life would be boring and mundane while Tony discovered magical wonders…this rather childish worry has Andromena lost in thought for the moment, and she looks back up to see her cousin as he hesitates.

"I am sure she'd be willing to teach you," she assured him. Madam Patil was a lovely woman, ultimately kind. "In fact, I think she'd leap at the chance to share her native tongue with another."

"Let me know if you find out that she does. I'll take lessons with you." Elizabeth murmurs, though after a moment she turns more of her attention towards the older boy with a more curious look. "What was the book you had with you the night before. I looked up the words, but the translation mentioned something about lying?"

Anthony blinks, "The Lost prophesies of the Sibyls at Cumae and Delphi?" He gives a little shrug, "It's a book of doggrel verse which gets interesting, but mostly only with hindsight. But there's some smashing stuff which could be references to the foundation of Hogwarts, for example."

Andromena was thinking about another book, but she doesn't mention it, and instead lets the two of them converse. If only so she could haul the second a larger book from the table at her side into her lap and flip it open.

Elizabeth blinks her pale eyes once, having, for once, not recognized the title of the book. "Huh." she lifts a brow at him. "Are you trying to make out events of the future through a book then?" Maybe. There's a little bit of amusement in the thought of that even. Why not a seer after all. Or perhaps he was just reading it because he's interested in different kinds of books.

Anthony says, "Oh, no… no, honestly, I mostly read it because it has some interesting theoretical mentions on the structuring of both ancient runes and how prophesy can be misleading. The fact that you can now map a lot of the prophesies to actual world events, and read them both as they meant, and as they were interpreted. Do you see?""

Andromena only has a passing interest in prophecy or divination, so she listens with half an ear. The mention of runes does catch her attention however, causing her to look up from her thick tome. Which was, as it so happened, on ancient runes. Mostly though, she hasn't anything to add to the subject matter.

The younger girl blinks a few times as she listens, completely off guard by the stream of words that left her mind a blank. Unwittingly, he elicited a soft flush as Elizabeth attempts to gather herself. "Read through the eyes of both the reader in modern day England and through those that had experienced the prophesies as they were foretold and had occurred. Making theoretical actualized instead. And as a result there are a still a great deal of ancient ruins that have yet to be deciphered that could very will impact the lives of Wizardkind today." It felt like there's a bit of rambling there. Was she rambling? It could very likely be rambling.

Anthony nods, "Exactly. I mean, the most famous example is, 'If you fight Persia, a mighty empire will fall', and its interpretation about being related to Persia, whereas it was his own." He shrugs, "But that's one of the publically known and recorded Delphic prophesies, of course." A pause, "Oh, and you _have_ to read the 'Secret History of the Trojan Wars' in the original. It is simply marvellous!"

Andromena knew this side of Tony, though many others probably just thought he was a quiet nobody. He had a quick wit and sharp intellect, but more than that he had an easy-going manner that made him enjoyable to talk to as opposed to scary - as some great know-it-alls could be. At least that was how Andromena felt about him, so that even if she occasionally had fears of being left in his proverbial dust, there was no real malice or jealousy.

The corner of her lips tugs with a small smile as Elizabeth chuckles faintly. "Once I master Greek that will be on the top of my list. Not as if I won't have enough on my plate soon enough with O.W.L.s around the corner. And N.E.W.T.s the next year." Not that she can't handle it. But she keeps that in check regardless.

Anthony nods, seriously, "I found OWLs very hard work. Challenging. But I'm sure you'll find it much easier than I am." He gives a little smile, "Bit of an idiot here, really."

Andromena made a great show of rolling her eyes at her cousin's comment.

"He's an idiot and I was actually sorted into Hufflepuff," said with a bit of a laugh. For her part, she was glad OWLs were done and over with. The stress she had felt at their coming hadn't been all that major, but ever since their passing she regarded her NEWTs with far more confidence.

"Oh don't say that." Elizabeth murmurs. "Having humility is one thing, but outright lying? You should know better." If Anthony was fishing for a compliment, he got it. Though realizing it after the fact, a little bit of the color returns to her cheeks as she flicks her pale eyes to Andromena. A smile easily grows on her lips, bright and genuine. "And you're such a cute Hufflepuff too. You have to tell me where you got your nails done."

Anthony waves a hand, since his results are known, "I got _very_ lucky with the questions that came up, that's all."

Andromena fails to notice the color shading Elizabeth's cheeks. She'd probably fail to notice a lot unless there was outright flirting going on. It does not help that one of their group was her cousin and the other was little Elizabeth. Neither of them were very interested in things like that! Right? She makes a show of looking to her nails. They were, in fact, finely buffed and polished a nice festive red in shade.

"Would you believe that I actually got them done complimentary last weekend for purchasing a gift?" A shrug is given, her smile just slightly bemused in nature. Hopefully Elizabeth had really wanted to know the answer to that.

"Have you guys finished all your shopping?" To change the subject from the intellectual to the consumer.

"That sort of luck I would really be interested in." Elizabeth murmurs, almost to herself it seems as her attention shifts back to Andromena. Who had taken the teasing as a genuine sign of approval, bragging a little even. It makes the younger girl pause before thoughtfully glancing down at her own nails. Clean and filed even, but nothing else. Rather plain in comparison to other girls', considering nail polish is one of the things that there's no uniform rules on. Not now at least.

"For the most part, yes…" Elizabeth says softly, her gaze returning. "I'll probably be too busy working once I return home to do so otherwise."

Anthony blinks. Blinks again. "Shopping?" There's a slightly paniced tone in his voice, "Uhm, I've forgotten something important, haven't I?" He looks from one girl to the other, "Really important?"

Andromena cannot help but chuckle as Anthony gives her that slightly distressed look. Shaking her head she says to him, "Christmas? It's not all that far off now." She'd even already wrapped his gift and had it securely stowed away. Andromena had most all of her purchases neatly wrapped and secreted about or, in the case of those not at school, delivered by owl to arrive just at the right time. Because the owl post was magical like that.

"Don't worry about it, Tony. We've still got these next three days to take you around Hogsmeade if you need to pick up gifts. Actually, we had better make sure that you do. Your sisters will never forgive me if I don't make you get them the right presents." Because they'd come to her with their wishes, as opposed to their older brother for reasons such as he was displaying. She gestures to Elizabeth. "Her father owns a book store, you know. Which reminds me, are you going to be visiting with me to Phil's over break?" That to Anthony.

Elizabeth blinks back at Anthony in return, pausing before a small smile tugs at her lips. "Christmas." she clarifies. "This Hogsmeade weekend is supposed to be for shopping for presents before the winter break." Maybe he got so lost in his books that he didn't realize what time of the year it was. And surprisingly, she found that cute.

Andromena seems to explains the shopping part better though.

The younger girl is caught off guard as Andromena makes it a point to tell him about the bookshop, her cheeks flushing again. "'Dweedle's Wheedles'…" Elizabeth murmurs softly.

Anthony 's hands flies to his face, "Oh…. Bother!" Yep. Because that's everyone's first choice of word when they realise they've totally forgotten Christmas. "Right. Hogsmeade it is." Andy gets a sly look, "And we need to start browsing bookshops anyway, don't we?"

Anthony Pooh! Andromena gives her cousin a quick nod, a mere dip of the chin. "That we do," she agrees with him, for the time being only gazing in his direction. When she does address Elizabeth next, whatever conspiratorial expression she may or may not have been wearing was gone. "Our cousin is getting married to a man that owns a book store as well. Books Unbound. Ever heard of it?" It was not, alas, in Hogsmeade. Not that Dweedle's Wheedles was, either. So there were two places that could not be ventured to this particular weekend.

Elizabeth blinks between them as they exchange a look, wondering briefly. Then Andromena explains further as to what Anthony could have meant. "Oh. Yes, I've heard of it." she confirms, though she's never been there herself. A faint smile tugs at her lips. "If you ever visit though, I hope you don't judge us in comparison." There's some light teasing in her voice. She does that now.

Anthony nods gravely, "Honestly, any bookshop is a good bookshop." Spy the man who hasn't really been around outside Kings Cross very much. "Oh, Gosh, so what _am_ I going to get everyone? At least I'm pretty flush on my allowance at the moment! And I'll have to tell you to push off when I'm getting your pressie, Andy!"

"I've yet to even meet him or go to his book shop…" Andromena conceded easily enough. "But I'll be sure to keep that in mind." Tease returned, with the same sort of good humor. Andromena leans back in her seat, the book she had earlier opened still resting in her lap. So much for studying during her break!

"We'll have to get a list together for who you need to shop for," she said to Anthony. "Family, obviously…and of course!" At the mention of her gift. "I want to be surprised! Hm…is there something you're really hoping for this year, Elizabeth?"

Originally Elizabeth hadn't really expected to be considered when it came to students giving one another gifts. The question comes to something sort of a surprise to her. Her pale eyes blink once. "Um," she glances away. "Yes… but it isn't really something that can be bought in stores or anything…" The younger girl admits softly.

Anthony looks curious. How unlike him. He leans a little forward in his chair, "Oh? That sounds intriguing? Do tell!"

Andromena follows suit, leaving poor Elizabeth Dweedle under the dual gaze of the Rowle cousins! Her hands are clasped together over her book, which is not resting somewhat on her knees. "Yes, do go on!" Can't throw out the bait of a mystery and not expect them to bite.

The sudden spring of curiosity makes the questioning all that much more embarrassing. But having to admit it out loud? She'll sound like a child. Elizabeth makes a face, flushing brighter than a moment before as she closes her eyes. "It isn't as intriguing as you're making it out to be." she insists. "I would like… to have my first boyfriend." Hearing it out loud, it does sound childish to Elizabeth. Maybe because she's a late bloomer. Not that she can help it. Her eyes open once more from behind her wire-frames. "But it isn't likely to happen, so any presents will be well-received."

Anthony blinks a few times, and flushes a bit, "Not entirely sure that's in my power to assist you with, I'm afraid! Don't tend to sell them in many shops." Oh Tony, little do you realise! "Besides, not sure I see the attraction. Most 4th and 5th year boys are a bit… oiky, aren't they?"

Andromena holds in a sigh. Oh, Elizabeth. You're no late bloomer. At least not when talking to herself and Anthony…unless Anthony has had himself SECRET GIRLFRIENDS! -shock, gasp- It's actually sort of romantic in its way, but Andromena has no easy method to convey this. Other than just blurting exactly that, which she won't do.

"It's not as if Elizabeth has much to choose from…" Andromena muses, following the same line of thought as Anthony. Mentally, she ticks off a list of male students the other girls age, and finds them all lacking. Andromena would supply the lovely advice of 'go for the older man,' but there is a particular thorn in her side that keeps her from doing so. "I still wouldn't worry about it over much, Elizabeth. It's like I said before, I didn't really even think about dating until this year."

Elizabeth's flush deepens and she's forced to close her eyes again, if only for a moment. "Which is why I said that it isn't something that can just be bought. She lightly presses her soft lips together as she gently shakes her raven head, absently reaching up to brush her loose bangs from her face. "Age doesn't matter to me. If there's an intelligent conversation, I'm sure that I'll be—" Elizabeth cuts herself off, choosing another set of words. "more than content. Happy even." She tries to give Andromena a small smile. "I know. Next month I'll turn fifteen, and the following month there will be Valentines."

Anthony nods briskly, "I'm sure they'll be queueing up for the job!" Job. nice choice of words, Doofus. "You know. Tall, dark, handsome people, and so on." Course, Mr Humble here couldn't take a hint unless clobbered with a big brick.

Andromena wouldn't want her sweet, innocent little cousin (who was actually taller than her, but that's besides the point), to take any hints! Or bricks. Oh Anthony, remain safely nestled in the bosom of your knowing relative Andy, who would spare you the woes of relationships! Or something along those lines. And you too, Elizabeth, keep your nose in those books! Books are safer than boys.

"If you find someone that you're content to be around, and enjoys your company also, that's a step in the right direction." A sage nod, because there's really little more that Andromena can offer by way of helpful advice. So far the only successful encounters she's had with a young man involved looking the other way in the library, and she felt that was probably a unique experience.

Elizabeth continues to flush as she stares down at her hands in her lap. "Again, not so lucky. Tall, dark and handsome type don't seem to notice me much. Not even average, fair-skinned and adorable." When she thinks she's beginning to complain, she falls quiet. Almost looking downtrodden even. Adromena's advice pulls from her a small breath and the young woman nods softly. "If I don't mess it up again."

Anthony says, "Again? How did you mess it up before?" Okay, there's that curiosity again. "Or um, you could probably get me to shove off up to the boys tower, if you wanted girl talk?"

Andromena doesn't even bother with the latter description of boys. Perhaps she is very atypical girl in that she has this strange, unfounded desire to go for perceived 'bad boys.' At least she didn't blather on about how she wanted to change things, or that she was sure they were good…deep down! She regards Anthony for a moment before shaking her head. He was welcome to stay, but then again…this wasn't about her!

"That's the other thing: someone that isn't comfortable with themselves can never be comfortable with another. I wouldn't take that as any sort of personal failing."

Elizabeth hesitates, but only briefly as she shakes her head and lifts her pale eyes up at Anthony. "I don't mind if you stay. I'm a very honest person and I have no reason not to answer. Not really." Andromena's advice gives her further pause, knowing exactly who she's talking about of course. "There was someone I was interested in recently, in a romantic sense, and being an honest person… I felt that he had the right to know, but I never had the illusion that there would be anything other than friendship between us. After that… it was a little confusing because there were moments when he held my hand, or… hugged me. It gave me too much hope. Especially sense I knew that he was interested in someone else." Elizabeth exhales a longer breath. "I messed up because I believe I became a burden to him, when that was never my intention."

Anthony lets out a little helpless 'Ah'. "Never reallly done the dating thing. Not found anyone I found interesting who would see anything in me." There's a small shrug, "But that's fine! I have the literature of Rome, and the poems of Sapph… uh, sorry, forget I said anything, actually." His cheeks are going distinctly red.

Andromena perks up. "No, no, coz, do go on," this coming from the girl who supplemented her heavy literary diet with the shameless reading of romance novels. She'd, of course, come across poems and tales from antiquity that were of themselves of a more…romantic nature. If Anthony could direct her to further reading, why, that would just be ever so helpful. Her attention shift meant that Elizabeth was free of scrutiny and could breathe a little easier, though she did say, "That's always the worst. Feelings of hope being trod under heel."

She was alright, really. Elizabeth just wished she had been told sooner. But now it can't be helped and all one can do is push forward. She pulls her gaze away from her hands to glance towards the others, a small smile gracing her lips. "There you go, lying again." she murmurs, a little bit of rose blossoming on her cheeks as well. "And I'm sure that any girl you would read poetry too… they would be lucky to have those words." Pausing lightly, Elizabeth glances to Andromena. "He's referring to poems of Sappho. She was a Greek poet whose poetry centered around passion and love."

Anthony clears his throat, "Yes. Yes. Um, but Sappho is not entirely suitable for young ladies. She was quite… well… ummm." A beat, "Is it hot in here? Do you think the chimney might be blocked?"

Andromena laughed. The point had been to make Anthony say it, but she was alright with Elizabeth letting him off the hook. And if Anthony tugs at his collar like another certain someone Andromena will just be floored. Still chuckling, Andromena sets her book back upon the table with its brother and gets to her feet.

With a flourish, Andromena gave a toss of her long locks and drew a hand to hover above her heart as she exclaimed, "I yearn and I seek." She had been sorely tempted to quote: But to thee, Athis, the thought of me is hateful; thou fliest to Andromeda. Only it was too plainly self-serving and not nearly as fun of a tease to the others.

Her flush becomes brighter, but Elizabeth shyly glances at Anthony. "And yet you still brought up her poetry, so her work must have been on your mind." It's difficult to tell whether she's teasing him or not, yet she still says it out loud. Andromena seems worse though, as she takes her teasing to a whole new level. It made the younger girl tempted to join in on the fun, though she doesn't really have a particular favorite verse of Sappho quite yet.

Anthony flushes a bit more, and recites a few lines in Greek. Then closes his eyes, "What my heart most hopes will happen, make happen; you your- self join forces on my side! " His eyes open, and he says apologetically, "Can't remember the whole lyric poem, it's about the length of a Quiddich pitch. But it's very beautiful."

Andromena and her cousin Anthony, along with Elizabeth, are gathered within the Ravenclaw Common Room during one of the day's breaks before school finally lets out and student have free run of Hogsmeade yet again. Andromena is on her feet, slowly return to a normal posture and grinning cheekily at the two before her. They have been discussing poetry, Sappho, to be exact, as well as the general topic of love.

"There are a lot of lovely lyrics that are worth repeating, but then at that point one may as well direct the listen to her actual work." Andromena could easily go on about those sorts of things, even if her listener wasn't…listening.

Elizabeth takes a short breath and quickly shakes her raven head, a few of her dark locks falling across her shoulders. "It's alright. It's still very beautiful." she says in a near whisper. Part of her wonders why he chose that verse in particular. If it spoke to him. Or why he chose to quote any poetry at all, considering how flustered he appeared. "And it wasn't at all 'improper'." She teases him lightly, her expression softening.

Anthony admits, "Very careful selection, actually! I… um, you know. Didn't want to shock!" He's still a bit pink around the edges. "But this is why having other languages is important. Some people say another language gives you another soul."

Eibhlin has not been part of the discussion of poetry, rather she's been in the library and is just now stepping into the common room from the hallway. Her bookbag is hanging from her shoulder and one book along with her notepad is tucked beneath an arm. "Afternoon," she greets the others with a smile. "Do they?" she asks, catching Anthony's last comment as she draws closer to the group.

"Oh, Evie," Andromena chimed happily when spying the red headed girl. "Stay right there! I've something for you," and with that, Andromena dashes off to the girl's tower, to return a handful of moments later with a cake and a smallish box; the cake held carefully in one hand as a server might, while the box is tucked under her arm. Striding to a table located about the center of them all, she sets the frosty delicacy down, along with the present and proceeds to fish about in her robes front pocket until she withdraws a candle. It is promptly stuck into the cake's center, and Andromena flicks her wand and lights it with a simple command.

"Happy birthday!" Andromena exclaims happily, scooping up the box again to thrust it toward Eibhlin. It contained a cap that she had seen while they were in Gladrags.

Andromena made that cake in Domestics today!

Anthony pauses, a moment, and then produces a card from within his robes, which he extends towards the girl, "Happy Birthday! See! I remember some things!" Okay, what is THAT referring to? "I hope you like it."

The younger girl chuckles as she closes her pale eyes, "Les jeunes toiles autour de la belle lune, cachant leur forme tincelante. Chaque fois qu'elle Shin plein sur Terre… Argent." A piece of Sappho poetry in French. A little showing off. Just a little. Elizabeth meets his eyes briefly before Eibhlin enters the commons and suddenly, there's a cake. And a candle. And Andromena is very excited. Liz couldn't help but chuckle. "Happy Birthday."

The card, when produced is very simple. Hand written. In a complex series of Ancient Runes, laid out in an Arithmantically significant square, of relevance to her date of birth. Because, you know, Ravengeek.

Eibhlin blinks as she's told to stay, but she does, curious as to what the other girl might be fetching. She sets book and notebook on a nearby table, and slips her bookbag off her shoulder to let it rest on the floor beside it. The other girl's exclamation brings a slightly embarrassed smile to her face, "Mena, you didn't have to. But thank you, the cake looks great." For a novice attempt at least, and she will praise her attempts. And then the card from Anthony which is accepted similarly with a quiet "Thank you," to both he and Elizabeth and a subtle blush of her cheeks for the whole event.

Andromena's cake may have that woefully home-made by someone that couldn't smear frosting on without making a grand mess of things, but if one looked past its physical appearance they would be pleasantly surprised by its taste. She had aced that part of the lesson, most assuredly. Andromena watches Eibhlin with obvious expectancy, waiting for her to open up her present. Andromena shares a look with both Anthony and Elizabeth before returning to Eibhlin.

"Birthdays are meant to be celebrated and enjoyed, not…passed over." She found that terribly depressing.

Anthony waves a hand, "Nothing you wouldn't have done for me." Okay, yeah, except he's Mr Forgettable. So, possibly she wouldn't. Maybe that's why he wasn't even considered for Prefect, because, well, Tony WHO?

A small chuckle escapes Elizabeth. "I concur." she agrees out loud, though she doesn't really expect anyone to remembers hers. Not really. The young woman absently lifts a hand, lightly brushing her bangs from her face as she looks from one to another. After a few moment she exhales a breath and pushes herself to her feet, gathering the books she had checked out from the library. "I think I'm going to get my cloak. If we don't get to Hogsmeade soon all the shelves might be picked clean."

"I suppose," Eibhlin agrees with Andromena easily enough if not whole-heartedly. Carefully pulling the wrapping from the box she opens it only to pause before finally setting the cover on the table beside the box. "Mena it's gorgeous," she says of the hat inside, which is to say its perfect, she couldn't ask for more and she /really/ shouldn't have. Of course since she gave it as a gift she likely knew what was thought of it already. A smile turns back in the direction of the other two, "True enough," she replies - she'd have made him a card at least.

Anthony jumps up, "Oh, heck, of course! Yes! Christmas shopping. Need to.. uh… complete it!" Okay, yes. Odd reaction there. Almost… guilt?

"Yeah, get ready to go to Hogsmeade, make up a list so we don't forget anybody," said Andromena to Anthony when he brought up his shopping. She was, of course, going to go with and help him out! But for now, the majority of her attention was directed towards the birthday girl. Andromena is glad that the other girl enjoys her gift. Andromena had thought its blue color would really go well with the red of Eibhlin's hair.

"Don't even worry about it," she replied, waving her hand lazily. "Let's dig in to this cake, hm? Oh, leaving already, Elizabeth? I can't go just yet," for certain reasons. "But I'm sure we'll catch you there later."

Eibhlin nods, "Well I do love it," she offers, "And cake sounds wonderful," she agrees, sending a wave after Tony and Elizabeth as they excuse themselves for Hogsmeade. Turning her attention back to Andromena the redhead drops into a seat.

Andromena, who was above using a utensil to cut her cake, aside from the fact there were none all that close by to make use of, levels her wand at the be-frosted birthday treat and begins to casually say, "Diffin…do…" Even as she says it she knows the spell has gone horribly awry. Rather than neatly slice into the object her earlier hard work and effort, the magical force instead just…smashes a chunk downward.

"No, augh, no!" How could she have failed so badly at a charm so simple!? She was good at charms, damn it. To Eibhlin, "I'll…take that piece. Let me see about taking care of the rest." In a boring, mundane, but not quite so likely to destroy, fashion.

Eibhlin giggles, "Its alright," she replies, wiping a splotch of frosting from her cheek and turning a smile up to her friend. "We all have off days. The cake really does.. well it did, look good," she teases lightly.

"Well…thanks," Andromena muttered, trying to keep the grump out of her voice as she set upon plating them each a piece of cake. Eibhlin got a nice, normal slice while she took the portion that was her shame. No better way to hide the evidence than to eat it, right? Once that was done, Andromena returned to her original seat. Since they were alone for the moment, she ventured to say, in a quiet voice, "Have you made any more progress?"

Eibhlin nods, tucking into her piece of cake as well. A second nod follows the question of progress, the redhead turning a glance over her shoulder to make sure no one's about. "A little, some of them I'm not as familiar with so its taking more research, but.." She's likely had some of the same hindrances.

"I was going to ask Anthony for his help again, but we all," herself, Tony, and Elizabeth. "Got to talking and I didn't get the chance. I really hope between the two of us we can work out the last before our visit." Which was suddenly upon them! Taking a few bites of cake, Andromena chewed in thoughtful silence. "I've been trying to figure out what to do with the doors, too. I mean, I think there's more to it than just saying the answers out loud." Those pedestals had to mean something!

"It happens," Eibhlin replies, "Distractions I mean, but I think you're right about the doors." That's she'll agree about easily. "But about that, I have a theory," she starts as she reaches for her notebook.

"Oh?" Andromena queried, looking up from her plate. "I was thinking maybe we'd find more clues in the other rooms. That is, if we can get to the other rooms." In the girls tower Andromena had already packed her satchel with the items she'd accumulated over the week: some antidotes, potions for light injuries, and Doxycide. It wasn't much, but it was better than nothing. "Figured we could test that big key in the Pixie Room door, but otherwise there are plenty of lock opening spells we could try."

Eibhlin nods, "I want to go back and see what's there before I can be sure, but I figure we should get the translations done before we worry about anything else." Flipping open her notebook she turns a few pages until she finds her most recent notes on the translations they've been working on. "Did you get any further?"

"No," said in an annoyed tone. "I've been working on it, but the last few pieces of any one translation have yet to fall in place for me. That's why I was going to seek out Tony's aid again. He's got such a knack for Ancient Runes…" And well, everything. Andromena dearly wanted to tell her cousin about it all, but was to loyal to Alphard to dare betray his trust.

"What do you think could possibly be behind any of them, anyway? Further entrance into the castle?"

Eibhlin lets a bit of a frown slip as she nods, "Same here," she replies with a sigh, pushing the paper over towards the other girl for her to take a look. As for what's behind them, "I'm not sure. It could be anything really."

Andromena took the parchment and looked it over just before saying, "I'll be…sort of let down if it's just a bunch of dusty old rooms full of pixies." Not that, if she really, really thought about it, Andromena wanted to be confronted by red caps or anything of a similar nature. It was the naive allure of adventure that called her; likely called all of them. The thought that there was a secret castle chock full of puzzles and mysteries that were just hard enough, but of course not beyond them in the end. And? Did Andromena desire riches, long lost tomes of ancient power? It was hard to say, because even as she tried to think about what she might hope for, it slipped through her fingers as if to say: you'll know me when you find me.

"Same," Eibhlin agrees with a bit of a nod. "I think we'd all be disappointed with that," she adds, shifting to collect her bookbag and things. "I think I'm going to get all this put away and … well we can go from there. I did want to get to Hogsmeade and get some shopping in myself."

"Sure thing, Evie," Andromena said in an agreeable voic, returning the paper. "I've just some things left to do around here, and I'll catch you," along with the others! "In Hogsmeade later!"

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