(1938-12-22) Bookshopping
Details for Bookshopping
Summary: Hogwarts students on Christmas holiday find some books in a junkstore, meet a famous author, and get autographs.
Date: 22-12-1938
Location: Whatchamacallit Junk Shop

Anthony is moving slowly around the small collection of books. Interestingly he's not just reading the titles, but taking each down carefully, and leafing through it a bit before replacing it, and moving on.

Variel enters and whistles aloud at the massive towers of gewgaws, knicknacks and whathaveyous. It takes some wandering, but he makes it to the book section, eventually, and pauses, surprised. "Well, this is downright convenient! How's things, Rowle?"

Anthony takes a moment or two to respond, then turns, "Oh! Weasley! It's not bad, actually! Just thought I'd have a little shopping whilst I was in London, before taking the floo home. I assume it's something of the same for you?"

Variel says, "Not quite! Made a trip special, actually. I find myself needing more christmas presents then I budgeted time to make, and I was hoping to find something might surprise a fellow bibliophile such as yourself."

Anthony turns with a grin, "So, who is she?" Okay, that's an assumption, but still, "Any particular interests?"

Dillorous Diderot was a well known name in the wizard community. In fact one could make the argument that the man was downright famous. His face, while occasionally appearing in the Daily Prophet, or on the back of books, was not nearly as recognizable however. Unless perhaps one were a bibliophile. The somewhat short and fairly lean middle aged man trailed along the mountains of piled up junk, looking every which way in his search for something WONDERFUL that could be wrapped up and then given to someone as a special present.

Variel plays it cool enough, but the color swamping his freckles says volumes as he shoves a hand into onr of his pockets. "Not one to mince words, are we, Rowle?" He grins, however. "Might be as I've taken up the challenge of gift hunting for the daughter of a shopkeeper, one trading in such items as these. Might be a housemate of yours. Might be."

Anthony gives a faint smile, "Right. Right, so it needs to be something special. Preferably a first edition or in very good condition. What's your budget?"

The lack of actual organized aisles meant that the winding and confusing paths betweeen enomrous looming piles of goods sometimes became really narrow. Too narrow for easy manouvering when say, two students come from one direction and a distinguished elder gentleman came from the other.

"Oh. Well. This is awkward."

Variel says, "I'm in the unique advantage of spending very little money during the year, qnd shopping for someone won't want something expensive unless it's fantastically unique. Show me options, and-" He cuts off as Dillorous arrives. "Nonsense, it's just a bit of organizational riddling."

Anthony turns to the newcomer, to explain how the Person-tetris can be performed, and then he stops abruptly, "You're Mr Diderot, aren't you?!" There's real excitement there in the tone, "Your work on the lost mysteries of Rome was ground breaking!"

"Organizational riddling. I like the sound of that," Dillorous said with a sardonic twist to his lips. And then the fan-boying happened, which he took with remarkable ease. "I am, yes. I see you've read my books. Wonderful. Ah, I wouldn't say groundbreaing.." but his tone said that he did infact think it had been ground breaking. He winked. "Well. Since we're stuck here until your friend manages to come up with the perfect answer to this riddle, I suppose indtroudctions are in order. Though of course you already know me.. so?"

Variel says, "Weasley, Mister Diderot, Variel Weasley, and it's a pleasure. Da and Uncle Galahad mention your work now and then."

Variel occupies himself futzing through the books nearby as Anthony accosted the celebrity author.

Anthony gives a nod, "Right! Sorry! Tony Rowle! And yes, it's a great pleasure! I'm afraid I haven't got your book with me here, otherwise I'd ask…"

"Oh, you're Avitus' boy are you? Brilliant. I can see him in you, no doubt about that. No doubt at all! You give him my best, will you?" Dillorous cheerfully told Variel.

"Tony Rowle. Right, right." Apparently he did not have any intimate connections with his family. None the less he offered his hand for a friendly shake. "Ah. Well. Since it's Christmas and all, if you happen to bring a copy by the Leaky Cauldron, I'll make sure it's signed by tomorrow morning. Now.. tell me, who are you two boys shopping for, eh? Girls, is it?" Random guess, due to their age.

Variel grins appreciatively when his father's a known quantity. He's got a book in hand just now, an old thing worn at the edges but bound- or just rebound- well. Alternative Runic Applications, it reads, and is interesting enough to coax Variel into leafing through. The guess catches him to a pause, and a chuckle. "That obvious, is it?" He turns towards the author, book in hand. "Shopping for the young Miss Dweedle, sir, her father owns the family bookstore?"

Anthony pauses, and then gives a faint smile, "I thought it might be!" He glances over to the older man, "Oh! Would you!? I shall be sure to do so!" His face takes on a slight flush, "Maybe I might bring a second copy?"

"Dweedle, of course! Charming people, the Dweedles. I've been on a couple of book signings over the years at their little store. Always a splendid time. Always decent tea, too, at Arthur's. Nothing is worse than spending an hour signining books until your hand is sore, and then finding out the tea is watery and cold! I remember them having a daughter, but I don't think I've ever actually met the young lady. Charming, is she?" This said with a playful wink and a grin.

To Anothony he murmured: "Of course. Not a problem. Two, three? Just don't dump a whole library down, eh?"

Variel widens his grin a touch at Rowle's confirmed guess, and offers, "Charming AND one of the sharpest minds with a rune I've met yet. Better than me, even, and I've got more classes under my belt."

Anthony flashes a smile at the author, "Oh, no! I would never! I…. it's awfully good of you to even sign _one_! I wouldn't like to impose! And yes. Yes, Lizzy is awfully nice!" The three of them are in a narrow section of the shop, by the collection of books, in something of a traffic jam.

Dillorous tapped the side of his nose with faux conspiracy. The middle aged wizard and famous author was wielding his charm, never throwing away a chance to network, or perhaps just hook in some future life-long buyers of his books. "Ah. Well you know, my boy, between you and me I've always found intelligence to be the singular most attractive quality a woman could have. Add a bit of charm to it, and you have a winning combination! And.." he leaned forward, winked, "if the parents run a bookstore, what could be better?" Spoken like a man who lived for books.

Chuckling he straightened back up. "I'm just kidding, young Rowle. Now if any of those books would be a gift, feel free to put a note saying to whom you'd li ke them to be dedicated to."

The antiquated bell over the door jangles loudly as another person steps into the shop, a belch of cold air accompanying her passage. Its Lucretia. Hair falling in immaculate thick, dark waves down the centre of her back, she looks almost like the sort of fabulous china doll that young girls always clamour for at Christmas. No longer in her travelling clothes, the young witch has a luxurious black cloak with silver trimmings thrown over a silk blouse tucked into fitted woollen slacks. Quite the picture perfect, she passage is halted when she spots Anthony collecting signatures. Curiousity killed the cat, but Lu is no cat and she's certainly not dead as she maneouvres her way through the shop to slide in close, squinting at Dillorous. "Oh! Oh its you!" The exclamation is out before she can help herself, the author treated to a brilliant smile. Brilliant!

Variel says, "All of that, sir, and more than a touch of pretty to her, as well. If I got her a few cherries or strawberries to color her lips, she'd be the picture of a thinking Snow White." He looks up at Lu's arrival, and stifles a chuckle at her energetic response to Dillorous."

Anthony gives another little nod, "Right-ho! And I believe you're right. Charming, intelligent, talented, skilled, _and_ beautiful is an amazing combination." Sounds like he has someone in mind, since not all those were in Dill's list of attributes to look for.

The narrow path between piles of stuff was growing crowded with the addition of Lucretia. Dillorous's gaze slid towards the young Black, his distinguished features offering her a warm smile. "Ah! Speak of charming your ladies, and one appears as if by magic. It is indeed me, and who would you be?" To the two boys he murmured a wry: "Have you come any closer to a decision on how we fix our little traffic jam?" Not that it would really be so hard.. since all it would raelly take would be for someone to back off a little until the path widened again.

"You sound like you've got someone in mind, dear boy. I hope it's not the same girl, if there'll be trouble on the horizon!"

The latter said to Anthony.

Lucretia eventually stops smiling at Dillorous long enough to speak. "Lucretia Black, Mister Dillorous, Sir," she says, knotting hands behind her back as a small lift is given onto her toes and then back down. "Would you mind awfully if I asked for your signature too? I don't have a book with me, but I'm sure that I could get one, and quite quickly too." That's confidence for you, her eyes remaining locked upon the wizarding world celebrity before her. Sadly, she fails to pick up on the whole traffic jam problem, remaining just where she's stopped, centre aisle with people starting to back up behind her.

Variel glances about, then taps Anthony. "What say we make room for passage, Rowle, before the good author finds himself further the victim of happenstance and is lost to the world beneath quill, book and adoring fan."

You say, "Oh! Good point, Weasley!" He starts backing up, admitting, as he does so (and blushes extensively), "I couldn't compromise. It might harm a ladies reputation.""

"Do you know, I went to school with both Nigellus and Cygnus Black. They would be your..?" Though he tried to keep a fairly well developed map of the family connections of the wizarding world, a necessity for any would be high society player. "Well, or Cy as we called him." Chuckling with nostalgia, he added wryly: "I'll not pretend I wasn't a bit afraid of him. He had the most dreadful temper, that Cy. Anyway! Of course I would be happy to sign a book. Like I told young Rowle here, feel free to leave a book at the Leaky CAuldron and I'll have it signed by tomorrow. Or you can just run off and get one right away if you'd rather."

Nodding, he told Anthony: "A true gentleman! I approve."

Variel says, "Dunno, Rowle. Way you talk about your girl, hard to imagine much reputational harm, but discretion-" Wherever that was going, he's left chuckling as Dillorous completes the thought faster. He backs with Rowle, book in hand. "If you've a moment, Mister Dillorous, could you confer with Rowle here and help direct me to a book or two might catch the fancy of a girl who breathes books?"

Lucretia squidges herself a little out of the way, focus given over entirely to Dillorus. "Nigellus Black is my great-grandfather and Cy Black is my great-uncle," she says, "… and I'll certaintly tell them that I bumped into you here today, Sir." There's a small pause when Variel comes back with a book, and its only then that she finally seems to remember that Dillorous was talking to them first. "Oh. Weasley. Hello! I didn't spot you. And Rowle." Both are given a quick smile and she eyes the book that Variel's carrying. "I need one of those too to get signed, but if you're looking for a book for someone, Morgana gave my cousin Douglas a book that he seemed terribly pleased with. Perhaps whomever you're buying for would like it too. It was called, Krama Sutar… or something. A bookshop owner would probably know it!"

Anthony says simply, "Because I'm not… well… worthy, I suppose, and the mere association with me might be bad for her reputation." Woo. Down on himself, muchly? Lulu gets a little wave, as he manoevers out of the way. "But yes, I'd be happy helping you pick out a book for Lizzy."

The older gentleman obviously must have caught something in his throat, because he was suddenly coughing (or was it laughing) at the book choice that Lucretia offered up. The crown of the British Empire had been one of Dillorous' most favorite research subjects. He had, infact, learned to speak hindu fluently. And a bookish sort like he as.. well.. he had come across a certain bok. "Ahem. Well. I think you mean the Kama Sutra, and at the same time, I'm fairly certain that is not a book one should give a lady witch. Probably not a book any of you should consider looking into, or asking about. Trust an old man on this."

"Instead, well. My early novels always seem to be well appreciated in your age bracket." If not his latter ones, which tended to be far more depressing. "Otherwise, does she read only wizard authors? Regardless, there's the Blue Dragon by Fudge that's quite marvellous. Just came out last year. Of course otherwise young women do tend to enjoy Jane Eyre, if one's willing to try the Muggles. Lots of strange ideas, but strong characterization!"

Thud. Variel drops the book and his jaw. "Uh. I don't. Think that makes for a good first gift, Lulu, but uh." He bends to reclaim the ratty book. "Much obliged, Rowle. And I've only ever caught her reading tomes and manuals." He glances at Rowle. "Does she like fiction?"

Lucretia lifts her chin and looks up at Dillorous; because even though he's not terribly tall, she's still vertically challenged herself. "Oh. No wonder Douglas hid it before I could get a proper look at it then." And oh gosh, its that rare occasion when Lu actually blushes, the colour just rising enough to stain her cheeks a faint pink. Closing her mouth so she doesn't say anything else, at least for a moment, she abandons the trio in order to hunt down a book, any book, by Dillorous. She means to get his signature!

Anthony clears his throat, and says with careful exactitude, "I understood it largely to comprise on advice about having good um… harmonious discussions… with your wife, and running a household smoothly." He's also bright scarlet, "And only marginally on… other aspects… of marriage?" He hurriedly says, "I haven't read it, but it's referenced in Sir Harry Flashman's 'An Introduction to the Languages of the Subcontinent', which I have been dipping into."

"Quite right," Dillorous said. He gave Lucretia a kindly smile as he watched the young girl disappear with rosy cheeks. Ah well. "A good book, that. Well. I think I will leave the two of you to continue on with your search for the perfect gift. You have a good day. Don't forget to deliver your books at the Leaky Cauldron, now." And with that, and a nod, Dillorous intended to back away and slip into a different path, still searchign for a gift himself.

Lucretia must have slipped out of the store and run all the way to the Flourish & Blotts Bookshop in order to get a nice copy of one of Dillorous' books. Its a particularly nice one, the dust cover shiny and the edges of the pages all tipped with gold. Hurrying back, there's that horrible moment when she notes that he's no longer there; or at least not where he had been. "Oh no! Did he leave? I have a book for him to sign." She glances from Variel to Anthony, disappointment flaring in her eyes.

Variel says, "Hmm? Well, yes, he left, but bring that to the Leaky Cauldron and he'll see too your signature." Variel is still waiting to hear about Lizzy and fiction."

Anthony glances around the maze of tunnels and junk, still very pink in the face, "Oh, I'm sure he's still here somewhere, maybe?" He turns his attention back to the books, "Actually, I need to go and get fresh copies of one of his books for me and Andy, so we can have signed copies." A pause, "I wonder if… well… someone else would like one." He's musing to himself.

Either Morgana is out doing some last minute shopping, or slipping into the junk shop to avoid people. Namely her family as she watches them pass by the window. Letting out a sigh of relief, she decides to get lost in the stacks when she spots some familiar faces. "This place looks popular today." Morgana says thoughtfully.

Lucretia looks all around, but not spotting Dillorous lurking anywhere, gives a simple nod to Variel. "The Leaky Cauldron? Oh right. Yes. I could do that." A glance down is given the back of her book, the image of the author smiling back up at her, quill in hand which he waves towards her with a flourish, and she pulls a face. "I should have got one of his later novels. They're much more interesting than this; its just that this was the nicest one in the shop. Perhaps I'll give it to Orion for Christmas. Along, that is, with the other things that I've bought him." Hugging it in against her chest, its at that point that Morgana walks over. Slightly in awe, because who wouldn't be, she quickly smiles at the Head Girl and offers her greeting. "Hello Rashley."

And the mention of the name 'Rashley' is enough to get Tony to start like a startled pheasant, and stiffen. And then he slowly turns, just in case it is a different Rashley being mentioned. "Uh… " There's a smile there, "Miss Rashley! It's lovely to see you! I was actually looking for you on the train, but I couldn't…" Get you alone? "… find you." He clears his throat some more, and glances around. Look! An enchanted bicycle! "Um, might I offer you tea and scones somewhere? Maybe in Muggle London, if… you know, you want… to avoid people?"

Variel listens to Tony speak, then widens his eyes just a touch, glancing at Rowle before moving towards the shopkeep with book in hand. "Rashley! Afternoon! Afraid I've got to be off- can you get back to me about the fiction thing? "

Dillorous finally emerged from among the many leaning piles of junk, carrying a couple of pieces he had picked up with the hope they might actually work, and perhaps even be appreciated when wrapped up. He meandered calmly towards the check out counter, intending to pay for his purchases.

"Hello Black, Weasley, Rowle." Morgana greets to those around, but Tony's reaction causes her to raise her brow just a bit. "My apologies, I was busy trying to get everyone under control and I ended up having to turn around with the train and head back to Hogsmeade." When he mentions tea, she'll purse her lips together for a moment. "I'm sure they wouldn't find me on the muggleside of things." She half mumbles to herself.

Anthony should note that contrary to @desc he's dressed in muggle fashion, a nicely fitted suit, with a 'Sam Spade' mac over the top of it, and a fedora to match. Rather dashing, and clearly well cut.

Tony's reaction also has Lulu raising her brow a bit too, not because of what he says, just the way he says it. Of a sudden, he stumbling over his words; this student who is versed in more languages than her and never linguistically challenged. Lucky for her, the reappearance of Dillorous distracts her attention and with a quick excusing of herself from the couple, she heads the author's way once more. "There you are! I thought I'd missed you. I have a book now, see? Do you think that you might be able to sign it for me before you leave the shop? I'm not so sure I'll be able to visit the Leaky Cauldron later when you're doing your official signings." A hopeful smile is offered, the girl using every advantage of her height and still cute'ish juvenility to accomplish what she's after.

"Ah, little Miss Black. Certainly, certainly. Here, let me have the book and I'll just.." first set aside the items he had picked up, then produce a self inking quill from inside of his suit pocket. IT was a fashionable three piece tweed affair, expensive and well put together. Like a proper countryside gentleman.

'To Lucretia Black. May your life be a brilliant adventure, and may you always love to read. - Merry Christmas, D. Diderot.'

"Here you go." BEcause who could have refused that cute little face and beaming expectation? Certainly not Dillorous!

Variel has disconnected.

Anthony gives a bright smile, "Precisely! And it would be my treat." Again that slight tendency to accelerate words, although less extreme than previously, "I believe there's a place called 'The Ritz'. I'm alright for Muggle Money, in fact. And… " Okay, crashing halt there. Maybe someone needs to tell Tony to just average out his speeds, "… and it'd be… awfully nice. I mean. If I can help. As it were."

Perhaps she was busy talking to Anthony and watching him stumble over her words to really see who was around, however as Dillorous starts his autographing, she'll give him a smile. "Hello Cousin." She's not sure how they're cousins, but she figures that's the easiest way to decern their familial relationship. "I did not expect to see you here. Did you get grandfather's yearly gift of scotch?" Turning back to Anthony, she'll shake her head. "I don't believe I am dressed for the Ritz, I am sure there is some nice bistro near by that we can find that would suffice." While Morgana is dressed nicely, it is no where near Ritz level.

Lucretia opens her mouth to ask for it to be signed to Orion, when Dillorous signs it to her instead. Ever the diplomat, at least most of the time, she halts herself from saying anything and accepts the book back with absolute grace. "Thank you. Thank you so very much. I will treasure this forever. I managed to get Jocunda Sykes' signature earlier today too. She plays for the Appleby Arrows and is a simply brilliant chaser. So nice too! Would you like to see it?" Bubbling on with all the enthusiasm of the perfect fan, she starts to pull the signed portrait from her bag, then halts herself. "Oh. But you're probably busy," her attention apparently brought to a screaming halt by Morgana's question to him.

Dillorous was oblivious to the fact he had ruined her christmas gift. And with the patience earned through years of small chat with devoted readers, he didn't even bat an eye when Lucretia decided to share her fangirl moment with him. "Appleby Arrows, yes. She's absolutely brilliant. Do you play quidditch, then? I'm afraid I never had the touch. Of course I'd like to see." Whether that was true or not, he certainly played nice. She was a Black, after all, and chances were she'd be someone when she grew up. A little kindness today could pay off in the long run.

"Morgana! I did, yes. And you're growing up so fast. You look absolutely lovely." And as he looked between Anthony and Morgana, perhaps he made a few assumptions. "You give my best to your parents, yes?"

"But don't let me interrupt your conversation with your friend!" Dillorous added, bemused. Assumptions, yes.

Anthony politely waits for the adult to finish addressing Morgana, and is grinning. Presumably at the fact that whilst the Ritz was shot down, the basic assumption of tea and cakes with him seemed acceptable, "Right ho! When would you care to? I mean, is the coast clear, sort of thing?" Okay, lousy with women, but pretty sharp at spotting things.

Lucretia is quick to switchout the book for the card, putting the former carefully away before holding the latter out for Dillorous to see. "I don't play, no. There's so many brilliant Slytherins on the team that I'd have to be something really special to replace one of them. Or even make the reserves. Not that I mind terribly much, I play for fun and the matches are always exciting to watch!" Looking at her, it'd be quite easy to see just why she's not on the team; she could never claim the tall athleticism that's required, far too dainty and delicate looking for that. A chaser though. Hmm. Perhaps.

"Thank you cousin." Morgana says politely to the compliment. When he mentions her parents, she'll raise her brow. "I'm sure Alexandra is around here somewhere with her family, but I'll let my grandparents know that I saw you." She says with a polite smile. Leaning back she'll look out the window and nod. "It should be, I think I have lost them for the time being." Pointing her finger at him she'll raise her brow. "And this is just tea, nothing more Rowle."

"Well. Perhaps when you get a bit older a spot will open up for you," and he added a fatherly pat-pat on Lucretia's shoulder. He'd paid attention to the card, too, before smiling and excusing himself with: "It was nice talking to you, Miss Black. I'm afraid I have a few more errands I need to run, however. You take care now."

He nodded to Morgana, too, then made to pay for his purchases and then slip out.

Anthony misunderstands, perhaps deliberately, "No cake, then?" There's a faint quirk of a smile, "But there's also a bit of… business to talk about, actually." Oh, the romance. Then he offers his arm to the girl, a bit tentatively, "Should we?"

Lucretia takes the picture of Jocunda back and smiles at Dillorous. "I hope you have a wonderful Christmas, Sir. And thank you again for the signing." Exhaling a long breath, she turns to see if there's anyone else left within the shop that she knows, but on overhearing that Anthony and Morgana are off for tea together, she heads for the door. There's probably some of her fellow third-years lurking in other shops.

"Well, it would be rude to not have cake as well." Morgana says thoughtfully and when Tony offers his arm, she tentatively takes it. "Business? I didn't know we had business to discuss? What sorts of buisness." Morgana questions, bidding goodbye to Dillorous and Lucretia.

Dillorous has left.

Anthony says quietly, as he starts to lead the way out, "Books. Of course."

"Lead the way then." Morgana says with a nod, peeking out of the store first before leaving.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License