(1938-12-27) Not Wholly Simpatico
Details for Not Wholly Simpatico
Summary: Rena encounters Adelphus in Books Unbound and finds him an interesting, though not entirely like-minded person to talk to.
Date: 1938-12-27
Location: Books Unbound

Dressed in a suit and draped in the lime green robes of a healer, Adelphus Slughorn sits under the branches of the tree in the bookstore, a large tome of some sort, clearly wizarding, in his lap. He has spectacles perched on the end of his nose, and as he reads, his hand traces in the air, as if he's using a wand that isn't there.

Seemingly blown into the bookshop, Rena spins around once she has passed through the entryway, and she quickly closes the door behind her. The offending cold wind rushes into the store, dissipating after a moment - but probably not soon enough. A few patrons turn in their seats and glance crossly at the young woman. She can only offer them an apologetic smile as she moves into the warmth of the shop and pulls her gloves from her hands. Being stared at seems to unnerve her, and her hand slips. One soft glove flies through the air and lands squarely on the open book in Adelphus' lap.

Adelphus looks up, then down, then up again. He removes his glasses, wipes them on the edge of his robe, and puts them back on - they're clearly reading glasses, the way he perches them there. Then he pulls his wand from a pocket inside his robe and swish /and/ flick - the glove levitates and is easily guided back over towards the redhead who lost it. "You seem to have dropped this." he says, closing the book and putting it on the table beside him. "And it's a shame to break up a matched set."

A look of dismay, and a small gasp slips from Rena as the glove flies and lands in the healer's lap. He's kind enough to not be angry, and certainly gracious enough to not make light of it, but she blushes rather hotly as he returns the glove to her. She takes it from the air with a somewhat abashed smile and glances down to pocket the errant thing: "Thanks awfully, sir. It was an accident…" Pausing a moment, her lowered gaze finally registers the fact that the gentlemen is a healer. "Oh, you work at Saint Mungo's, do you?" Now she manages a fuller smile, at least.

"Yes. Adelphus Slughorn, at your service, Miss." He gives a little bow, "Healer in the Magical Bugs and Diseases ward and Trauma Section." He raises his wand in a flourish before giving it a spin akin to a gunfighter twirling a six shooter and tucking it back into its special pocket in his vest. "I'm sure it was an accident. I don't usually have pretty girls throwing their gloves at me, after all."

Rena looks more fully at Adelphus, and her lips can't help but tug into an involuntarily amused little smile as he gives his wand an impressive flourish. A small laugh escapes her, and she shakes her head a little: "You are a one, aren't you?" She giggles while quirking an eyebrow quizzically. "I 'aven't got your knack for embellishment, Mister Slughorn - but I offer you my 'and, regardless." Which she does, extending her hand to Adelphus. "Irene Lee, though I generally go by Rena. Auror Initiate."

"I'm the only one, as far as I know. Goodness knows, the Hospital couldn't handle more of me. That sort of efficiency is foreign to wizard kind." And modest, too. Adelphus, however, does take her hand, and rather than do the whole kiss thing, he simply shakes it, his touch light. "Ah! An Auror. Well, thank you for your work in keeping us all safe. And where have I heard that name before… Lee, Lee… You were on the Wireless, weren't you? About the Unity movement?"

Rena begins to move over to the counter where one can certainly purchase ones books - but also a warming, stimulating drink of choice if desired. She pauses briefly and seems to blush again. Perhaps it is merely the cold nip of the air outdoors still biting her cheeks: "I was on the wireless, yes but, not speaking for the Unity Movement at the time. I merely spoke out against the wonton prejudice and foolish 'atred and violence perpetrated by the followers of Grindelwald. Be that as it may, I 'ave actually joined the movement since." She draws up to the bar and offers with a smile: "Can I get you anything?"

Adelphus follows her, and pulls out a few small coins to pay for his own drink, "Ah, I see. I rather feel as if we should leave the Muggles be. We've lived quite happily apart, and those times when we haven't… well, things haven't gone well. Some say that's because Muggles are violent, but… I tend to attribute it to fright of the unknown."

Rena lifts herself onto one of the seats beside the bar and orders herself a steaming goblet of spiced hot cocoa. While waiting for the drink, she frowns slightly at Adelphus' words and she struggles a bit to keep her composure completely cool. Glancing aside, she remarks the locations of nearby patrons and makes sure to keep her voice low for politeness sake: "You sound as though you listened to my speech, but managed to flip things around backward." She says, somewhat wryly.

"Do I?" Adelphus says, "Curious. Though no, I just remembered hearing about a young Auror giving an impassioned speech about the subject. Nevertheless, prudence dictates that we stay apart from the Muggles. Besides, there aren't nearly so many of us as there are them, we'd be… well, the outcome would be bad, I have a feeling." He pulls up a stool, and waits until his hot cider arrives. He raises the goblet and says, "To new meetings, hrm?"

"I don't know. My best friends and favorite people to spend time with are Muggles," Rena replies rather stiffly.
Her cocoa arrives, and she takes it in hand. For a fleeting instant, she holds it beneath her face and luxuriates in the steamy aroma. It seems to relax the young Auror very slightly. It takes a thoughtful moment before she decides to raise her glass to Adelphus, but her smile is decidedly uncertain and a little weak. "To new meetings," Rena drinks.

"If by reverse it you mean that we're afraid of muggles because we're ignorant of them… I will say that I'm more curious than afraid. But I know next to nothing about them. I didn't even take one of those muggle studies courses at Hogwarts." Adelphus leans in conspiratorially and confesses, "It was a soft course, in my opinion." But then he considers, and asks, "You were muggle-born, then?" At the very least he doesn't use any of the disparaging terms for that, so common among those of Wizarding birth.

Rena makes no reply with regard to Muggle courses. Instead, she focuses her gaze on her drink quite intensely for a moment. All things considered, Adelphus does not seem to be the type who is violently opposed to those of lesser blood, but there is a distinct hint of arrogance in his words. There's something to be said of him, at least.
"I was. Still am. You aren't cured of Muggle-birth simply because you live amongst Wizards." She quips somewhat glibly before taking another long sip of her drink.

"No, you aren't. Because it's not a disease." Adelphus says, in just as sharp a counter-point. "Wherever we came from, it's the now that matters. I've spent longer at Hogwarts and St. Mungo's than I ever did at the old pile back home. Even if my parents were - are - lovely people who gave me everything I could have needed growing up." He sips his drink, as well, silent.

A slightly wistful - if somewhat sorry - look enters Rena's dark eyes, and her expression softens. Her fingernails slide up and down the goblet's curve thoughtfully: "I only 'ad my father, and 'e never could give me the things I wanted, but 'e did try to give me the things I needed." She pauses, smiling a little sadly down into her drink: "It's the trying that counts, I suppose."

Rena takes another drink and then draws herself up in her seat to put on a better demeanor: "You work at Saint Mungo's then. I suppose you might know a young 'ealer by the name of Takeshi Odori? I'm not sure, but there's probably no other Japanese working there - so 'e's a bit 'ard to miss."

"I believe I do know him. An Apprentice, isn't he?" Adelphus doesn't know if she could tell a janitor from a midwife, so he helpfully supplies, "His robes are yellow?" Another sip of his drink, and he admits, "I think I've seen him on rounds and the like, though I don't have any students of my own right now. Is he a friend of yours?"

"Mhm," Rena replies in the affirmative with a nod to the question of Takeshi's robe colours. It's not a good colour for him - but, then again, neither is chartreuse. Is garish taste endemic to those of the healing profession?
A fleeting glance darts toward Adelphus then, and Rena quickly takes a sip of her cocoa once more. The steam is hot, and can easily cover for the faint blush in her cheeks that rises again. "Y-yes, he is. I just wondered if you had any perspective on how he's doing." Suddenly, her H's begin to come out properly. She /is/ trying to speak more properly.

"I don't know. I think… he was having a little trouble in the maternity ward, as I recall. And they were making him spend a bit more time working with the midwives. But he seems a smart lad, and I'm sure he'll move up soon." Adelphus takes another sip of cider, and then orders a pastry, "Would you like something?" he asks (presuming there's some sort of snack food available). Then he leans one elbow against the counter and says, "Becoming a healer is a marathon, not a sprint. I'm still working on Pickwick's Pharmaceutical Potions for the Particularly Self-Punishing, after all, and I've been a full healer near a decade now."
That, by the way, being the name of the book he was reading when she came in.

There is a distinct air of disappointment in Rena's features. The look is as fleeting as a breath of smoke, but there, none the less. She had been hoping for… something better, it would seem. However, being offered food, she politely shakes her head with a small smile: "No, thank you."
Quickly changing tack with a chuckle, the young woman turns her gaze to Adelphus with laughter in her eyes: "Is 'For the Particularly Self-Punishing' a subtitle to the book?"
"No, the subtitle is 'Potions, Preparations, and Prophylactics for the Palliation of Particular Problems.'" Adelphus explains, with a shrug, "It's quite the weighty tome."

Ladies and Gentlemen! If you look closely, you will be able to see Rena's eyes cross!
"Postions, preparations and proph…what on earth?!" Rena tries to repeat the tongue-twister wording of the schollarly book's subtitle. Needless to say, she falls helplessly short of the mark and breaks into laughter. "And this is why I became an Auror." She jokes. "Thank goodness there are people like you to piece us in law enforcement back together again when things go wrong, though."

"It's a big book of potions we can use to treat different diseases. I'm in Magical Bugs and Diseases, you see, so some of the stuff we deal with is quite unusual. If it were simple, they wouldn't need to be admitted to our service at St. Mungo's." Adelphus says, grinning, and then picking up a little finger cake and nibbling before sipping his cider, "We're always happy to see Aurors. You've always got something terrible happening that we need to fix. Very exciting! And all those stories of derring-do, of course."

"None from me yet, I'm afraid." Rena replies meekly, lowering her eyes once more. "Like Takeshi being an apprentice - I'm just an initiate." Of course, chances are, if she manages to stick out her chosen job long enough, there will be a time and place to try out her bed at Saint Mungo's for size. "But, when I do manage to get myself sent up for a bit of R & R, I'll be sure to pass on any exciting tales I may 'ave to you." She smiles.

"We won't take it personally if you try to avoid a stay. Entirely too many people in the Thickary ward as a result of Dark Wizards and Witches." Adelphus laments that state of affairs and puts down his drink, resting both hands on the counter. "Still, do come by and visit. We have a lovely tea room."

"Do you now?" Rena asks, setting down her nearly empty goblet with a surprised expression on her features. "That's odd - Takeshi never told me that." For some reason, this seems to puzzle her a bit. However, she shakes it off with a little shrug and finishes her drink: "I'd best be getting on 'ome now. Well, after I pick up a book I ordered, that is."
Sliding off of her chair, she moves over to the counter where she hands over an order slip and the clerk promptly rummages around to find a brown-paper-wrapped parcel. She pays cheerfully and then returns to Adelphus with a smile: "It's been pleasant meeting you, Mister Slug'orn. Even if we don't see eye to eye."

"Ah. Yes, yes we do. The Visitor's Tearoom. Come see it some day. I'll buy you a cuppa. And do tell your young healer friend I said hello." Adelphus raises his glass in farewell, and then, when he sees what she's bought, he studiously avoids comment, other than to say, "And enjoy your reading, as well." It doesn't sound sarcastic, either.

The young Auror smiles pleasantly as she passes toward the door. Pausing to slip her gloves from her pocket once more, she wriggles into them one by one, holding the wrapped book in the crook of her arm, tightly against her side. "Thank you - I shall. And… enjoy your particularly self-punishing potions lessons."
Out the door Rena hurries, quick like a rabbit to ensure she doesn't disturb the customers more than she already has.

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