(1939-01-10) Stars, Toads, and Mudbloods
Details for Stars, Toads, and Mudbloods
Summary: Lucretia and Leoric go star gazing, only to find his sister Adorabella and her toad, while Madeline joins them and the younger girls show a little tension and Angelus turns up.
Date: 1039-01-10
Location: Lake View Louvre

Leoric leads Lucretia out of the owl tower as agreed, heading for a better place to stargaze. He wanders with Lu a bit, talking idly, until he finds a good spot to stare out over the lake and at the sky. "Here we go! Perfect. Pulvino." He whips his wand at the ground without explanation, but- being a third year herself- Lucretia likely learned this charm not long ago.

Leoric nods in satisfaction and gestures to the spot the spell was cast upon. "Go on, have a seat. Should be comfy," he remarks as he repeats the spell for himself. Being a student- albeit amateur- of Astronomy, clearly the spell is related to his studies. Clearly.

But the space that Leoric has chosen is not unoccupied! Indeed; there's what appears to be a camera set up and a body along with it, half crouched behind the lense. On the lip of the window, just beneath where the lens of the camera peeks through, there's also what appears to be a rather large squat three legged toad, currently blowing bubbles every single time it attempts to croak. And the owner of both, seems so absolutely intent on her focus through the camera that the soft conversation of others goes beyond her. Why not? Dora spends a lot of her time invisible to other students; no need to bother them at all.

Lucretia laughs. Its a warm, melting sort of a laugh as she spreads her arms aeroplane style to either side and simply allows herself to fall backwards. The cushioning charm cushions her well, so its with a sudden squeak that as she's near horizontally laid out an inch or two above the granite slabs of the castle roof that she finds herself practically eye-to-eye with large toad. Its not even a handsome toad, its a large, bulbous, bubble-blowing toad. "Arrrgh!" It can't be helped, the squawk of alarm is out before Lu even has a second to stem it at its source, the girl pushing herself, or trying to, upwards. THAT was unexpected!

Squawk? Why squawk? In a rare moment of being completely distracted by something outside of a book, Leoric's completely missed his sister's presence, quiet and still as she is. The toad is just mucusy icing on a surprise cake! He takes a second to register the toad's presence, then smiles. "MISTER Penseverus Bubbles, an honor and a surprise to encounter you in such a location!" He frowns a bit. "Though you do look a bit cold… Ellie??" He calls over to his sister. "Why've you brought Signore Bubbles outside? It's awful cold!" He flumps down on his own cushion as he does, lined up beside Lucretia's. "L-" He cuts himself off, cheeks colored faintly in the darkness. From the cold, yes. "Black, have you met my sister Adorabella? That there's her toad, the prestigious Mister Penseverus Bubbles the Third. He's from a quite important line of toad royalty, you know. Only the best flies for him."

Mister Penseverus Bubbles the Third is in fact, a very ancient toad. One who's on his last legs, admittedly. When Lucretia squawks, he gurgles and a series of slimy little bubbles go pop-pop-pop and he stares, meeting the girl's eyes in the unblinking way of toads, though in Penseverus' case, his expression looks a lot more pensive and severe. For her part, it took the squawk to draw Adorabella out of her own bubble and she turned about, blinking owlishly at her younger brother and his company and then, glanced down to Mister Bubbles almost bashfully. "He wanted to come," Dora answered Leoric, before flashing a bashful smile Lucretia's way as she crouched down to pick up her pet. It's obvious when she does that the knotty creature is missing one of its hind legs. "He's not really royal, you know. I only called him that because he has three legs. No one wanted him." Which has the middle Selwyn looking somewhat sad as she slides the creature into her pocket. "I'm sorry that he scared you, Miss Black."

"I wasn't scared," Lucretia says, swallowing heavily. She doesn't recline on the magical cushioning of air yet, however, despite the fact that the toad's been picked up. "And I'm glad he's not royalty, royalty usually demand something a little less alarming than having someone squeak in your face." Blowing a breath through slightly pursed lips, she shifts herself a little so that she's just perched on the edge of her invisible prop, which might look a little odd to anyone just happening on the trio, but to Lu is extremely comfortable. "I've not seen you in ages. I was just saying to Leoric how I'd missed seeing him in London this Christmas. Still. Here we are again, all back at Hogwarts once more."

"He's three legs because he survived a fight with something what had more teeth," Leoric recites in a firm voice. "That makes him tough, and anyone can't see the merit to a tough toad's trying not to see. And it -has- been ages. You should visit, next time we can get Brother in a mood for guests over holiday." He looks to his sister with a warm smile. "I was just telling Black about how we spent holiday with family. We get so few chances to be together that we didn't want to waste it."

"He didn't, really." Dora explained, casting a slightly sad look in her brother's direction for the lie. "Someone had returned him to trade in on something better and I just…," lipbite. She couldn't let him be left there alone and unwanted and without a friend. It was heartbreaking. "But…we did have a nice holiday. I'm sure that Uly would let you visit sometime, if you wanted." Her brothers had always had it easier than she had, which was simply an unfortunate truth. "I hope that your holidays were just as wonderful though, Lulu. You weren't at that…horrible party though, were you? The one that was in the news?"

A sudden smile softens Lucretia's features. "I think that just about anything has more teeth than a toad," she says to Leoric, wrapping her arms around her knees. Unsurprisingly she doesn't attempt to touch the toad, the creature isn't the most inviting of things to pet or make a fuss of, and so she doesn't. She shakes her head to Adorabella. "No. I'm afraid that I was laying low after Alphard's party. I didn't think it'd be best received to turn up there after that, though I feel this odd sort of guilt about it now. I should have been there, and wasn't. Is that bad? Perhaps it should have been me rather than someone else that got singled out that night." A small shudder is given and she brings the apex of her chin down to rest on the angle of updrawn knees. "Is it wrong to confess a relief to being absent?"

"He might have," Leoric maintains. It's always been his theory and he's shared it with anyone what listened. "And he's been a wonderful pet for you, Ellie. I can't imagine why in the world someone would want a better pet." He hrmphs a bit. "And it's not bad to be relieved. I was. It's not as though our being there would have changed much. If someone could have stopped one of the things that happened, I'm sure they would have. It's just how things occured. If we'd been there, we'd have just worried our families and upset ourselves."

Madeline comes trapising down from the owl tower - a letter clutched in her hands. No, it wasn't mail time, but once a week her Uncle sends Avi by with a little something at this time. Their little secret, really, and she loves it. She can feel something tucked into the envelope and she can't wait to get back to her dorm to open it.
She's minus the antlers from the day before - one of the older Gryffindor's having obligingly transfigured them away from her so she could sleep, but at the sight of Adorabella she pauses, a huge grin on her face. "Hello again!" she says happily. "Thank you again for the help!"

"At least you got to go to your cousin's party," Dora murmurs, reaching into her pocket to pet Mister Bubbles. His large dark eyes could be seen blinking out of her robes. Dora hadn't been allowed to go to any. Which was fine, because she'd discovered a family of mice in her room beneath the floor boards in the cage the weasel had eaten through. "He does make a good pet," the girl agreed, flashing a warm smile to her brother. "Honestly I'm not sure what I'd do without him."
Though when Dora catches sight of Madeline, the young girl earns a welcoming smile. "You're most welcome! I'm just glad that I could help."

"I got thrown out of my cousin's party," Lucretia corrects for Adorabella, partyly through pique and partly because she feels guilty on behalf of the other girl that she didn't get to go at all." A smile is ghosted Leoric's way, a nod of her head to what he says. "My grandfather was there, I'm sure he'd have looked after me. Alphard too. I'm sure I'd not have been in any danger, but not being in danger and just being a liability is whe-.." Her voice dries. A slow turn of her head as Madeline's voice floats into the conversation and her eyes slowly close, shoulders lifting. "Oh Merlin's whiskers save us. Its Evans."

Leoric looks from Dora to Evans to Lucretia. While internally he admits the fascinating aspect of this intriguing social dynamic, he has rather other plans for the evening than a diatribe on the failings of mudbloods. He makes a show of flopping back onto his invisible cushion. "I don't know what you'd do without him either; so keep him warm!" He stares upwards a bit. "Heyhey! Leave the firstie be, I think I saw a shooting star." He swats impatiently at Lucretia's shoulder, encouraging her to lie down.

"Hello, Black," Madeline says brightly, not seeming to be bothered by the other's attitude. Looking back to Adorabella she adds, "She saw the really great antlers you did for me - didn't you Black? It was some of the best transfiguration work, I think!" At the mention of a shooting star, she looks up, an eager expression on her features. "Was there? Did you make a wish? I don't suppose you wished for another shooting star?"

"Oh my goodness," Dora gushes, "I'm so very sorry. I'm sure he didn't…mean to throw you out. Maybe he was confused or someone else was pressuring him?" Because that was Dora, always willing to believe the very best of well, anyone at all, even when the truth was something else entirely and poking her in the face. The slight shifting tension between Lucretia and Madeline, Adorabella does her best to ignore and Madeline's praise draws a hint of color to her cheeks. "It wasn't much," the older Hufflepuff demures, "Honest. I'm just very glad you liked them. I should have the film developed soon too, if you want a copy." Because the sight of Madeline with her horns and matching her book was absolutely too precious not to want to capture forever and ever!

Lucretia flumps back. Its a satisfying thing to do, and probably quite alarming if a person didn't know that there was an invisible cushion to prevent the girl from cracking her head on the flagstone rooftop. "Believe me, I'd like to leave her be, but I think the horrid little thing is stalking me," Lucretia says, turning her attention to the skies. "Jealous, probably. She keeps trying to be nice, goodness knows why. You'd think she'd get the hint that she's just not wanted." Lacing fingers behind her head in a cradle of sorts, she leaves the dealing of Madeline to Dora for now, fixing her attention instead upon the fourth year she's speaking with. "They're not really starts you know, they're meteorites burning up." And just like that, she dispels any notion of romantic omens.

"Of course they are but that doesn't make them in the slightest less exciting to watch." Leoric blinks suddenly and turns towards Lu, propped up on an elbow. "And I'm relatively certain -I- taught you that little fact, come to think on it." He flumps back down himself. "How many of the planets have you seen, Black? Any you've missed?"

"Could you?" Madeline asks - she's bouncing on her toes, her smile broad and excited. "Oh, /wow/, that'd just be amazing! My parents and my Uncle Perry would just /love/ to see it! Thank you so much!" She's gushing excitedly, her voice rising up a notch.
As Lucretia flops back, her eyes widen, only to breathe a sigh of relief when she lands gently on the floor. She flat out ignores the other girl's attempt to be hateful. "Are we watching the stars? I haven't been star gazing in so long - it's so nice we can do it, and be indoors, too!"

Dora's expression is somewhat…perplexed when Lucretia speaks about Madeline in such a fashion and looks a little thoughtful herself. She is nice, after all. To everyone. Is that what people think of her, too? Mister Bubbles is cradled a little closer in her robes then; the three legged toad happily making croaking sounds that still each issue with a bubble in the wake of it.
"I would be most honored to do so, Miss Madeline. And any other pictures that you'd like your family to have. If I can help in any way, please let me know because I'd love to!"

Lucretia would shrug to the question Leo asks of her, but the gesture gets a little missed with the horizontal position she's adopted. "With the naked eye? Mars and Venus. Through my father's telescope though, I've seen Mercury, Saturn, Jupiter and Uranus." There's a definite hint of a giggle when she says that last, though she quickly brings it under control. "I've not seen Neptune yet and I would like to see Pluto- though I'm not so certain that it even exists despite reports that it claims it to be another planet." There's a wiggle of her toes and she settles herself more comfortably, its a little like lying on a pile of heaped up feathers. A twist of her head to the side and she looks over to Leoric, blanking Madeline completely and sadly, by default, Adorabella too. "Did you bring a telescope to school with you? Maybe we could drag it up to the roof one night if so, see if we can spot Neptune, if nothing else."

"I did bring my telescope, yes. I'll consult the charts and see when we can see Neptune and Pluto." Leoric thinks a moment, still a touch chilly, then has an idea. "Black, I've had a brilliant idea. Let's share." He sits up and wriggles a bit, then pulls his robe open and off, spreading it over himself and Lucretia. "Then we'll both be double warm." He's working rather hard to keep Lucretia distracted, both for Dora's sake and simply to engage with her on terms they can share.

"That is /so/ nice of you!" Madeline says brightly. She leans over next, to peer at the toad, before offering Adorabella another smile. "He seems nice! It's cold up here," she announces. "I think I'll run down to the Gryffindor dorms and come back with some blankets. Just a few minutes!" And then the girl is off, dashing down the stairs.
Really, she wants a peek at her letter.

"Leo had it set up so that I could use it to do some close up shots of the stars at home, over the holidays. I still want to try and catch sight of a shooting star so that the picture can later be charmed." Dora mused, watching Leo and Lucretia with a quiet smile. A glimmer of humor in her eyes as she watched her brother flirt. "Perhaps…I ought to go as well? Mister Bubbles is likely cold and I've probably got enough shots for the evening."

Lucretia narrows her eyes a little, like Leoric just made some sort of crazy proposition. But once he removes his own cloak and spreads it over them both, she gets the idea. "Oh right." She wriggles a little, hitching first her left shoulder and then her right as she pulls it out from beneath her, then floats it over the top of them, snugging her scarf right up and around her ears and nose. "You should come and join us over here," she says to Adorabella, even shifting a little to make room for her on the magical cushion she and Leoric are lying on. "And Leoric," she cautions, using his first name even though he doesn't use hers, "If that mudblood offers us a blanket on her return, I'll make you eat it should you accept." With that small warning out of the way, she returns her attention to the star filled sky, her breath escaping in curling wisps of white despite the fact they're indoors. That's Scotland and castles for you.

Leoric squeezes on his cushion as well- with Lucretia's scooting, there's probably comfortable room for another under the cloaks. "I'm feeling entirely too clever to accept blankets, Lucretia, I've already got two warm ones thanks to my genius. And so will Ellie, if she feels like coming to join us."

"Oh please don't say that," Dora says her lips pursing in a little frown in Lucretia's direction. "It isn't very nice and Madeline has been a particularly nice girl. It was kind of her to think of others instead of just herself. It's…it's the actions," and there Leoric could tell that her nerves were bothering her, simply by the way that she repeated herself. "The actions that make a person, not their birth. So while, while you might believe otherwise, I will ask that you not use that language in front of me. Because I don't." But then Dora's eyes turned to her brother. "And if I ever hear you use that language, I'll wash your mouth out with soap."
"And I'll tell Uly."

Lucretia exhales, her cheeks inflating before the breath is released through her lips. Its a very thirteen year old thing to do when being chastised. "If you hate it so much, then I'll try not to use it in front of you, Dora. I can't pretend that her and her sort are anything other than what they are though; parasites in our world." She sits up, tugs her cloak off Leoric and pushes herself to her feet. "Things are different now though. I can't affect a liking for such as her and I'd rather be honest about my feelings than two-faced and unhappy. You like them? Fine. Like them. I don't." There's a tight, regretful smile given Leoric and she dips one shoulder, slipping her cloak about her tiny frame. "I should get back to the dormitory, its curfew soon."

Angelus had simply been looking out over the grounds, the notebook he had brought with him now closed and held at his side. But the youth moves around the wall of the castle when he hears the sound of voices, and he pauses just as he steps around so that he should be in view. "Oh, now that's just wrong," he says in a taunting, light-hearted tone. "How can you have a party without sweets." As this is said he dips his hand into his robes, drawing out a bag as he steps forward. "Am I interrupting?" he adds in with a little quirk at his lips as he offers out the bag.

"I'd never, Ellie. You know my opinion of the word." And all other coarse language, for that matter. He's of the opinion that if he resorts to using dirty words to make his points for him, his vocabulary has failed him. He doesn't push this on anyone else, though. He swallows a groan as Lu sits, stands and robes herself. "… not -that- soon to curfew," he murmurs as he wraps his cloak around himself again. "Ah, Eibon. Just in time for everyone to run for the safety of the dorms, lest Big Bad Pringle find students to drag to the dungeons. Kind of you to offer, but sounds like the stars have lost their mystique for the evening." He stands with a grumble.

"Thank you, Lucretia," Dora replies and says no more on the matter. Instead, she begins packing up her camera, to the soft sounds of the toad in her pocket making content little bubbly croaks. "And I know, Leo, but sometimes ones opinions can change in the company of others and that…is never good." A little sigh at that and Dora offers Angelus a smile. "Of course, you aren't interrupting at all. We were just getting ready to go down. Though, someone should let poor Madeline know where we've went because she'd gone to get blankets. I suppose that I could." Offered, as she collected her things and began to start towards the exit.

Lucretia tugs on the end of her scarf, Angelus given a welcoming smile. "I'm afraid that I'm just off back to the safety of the Slytherin strongholds," she tells him, fastening the froglet on the front of her robes. With Dora making her exit, she turns to Leoric. "It would seem that I might be a bad influence on you, and I'd hate to be that. Thank you for your company, and for the loan of your cloak earlier and I'd love to look for Neptune with you some time, if you're ever free." A small skew of her mouth follows those words and with a small rub of her fingers to the bridge of her nose, she heads for the door, and ultimately the stairs that will eventually take her back down to the bowels of the castle where the Slytherin dorms are located.

After offering out the bag, Angelus plucks a piece of chocolate out of it and pops it into his mouth. His royal blue eyes flick from one person to the next as he chews and swallows, bobbing his head. "Oh, looks like I've missed out," comments the youth. But an eyebrow arches as when Madeline is mentioned. "Oh, was Evans here?" A soft, smug smile slips across his lips. "Well, if you all were expecting her back I can surely let her know," he offers, sounding quite sincere even with the little twinkle in his eyes. "She's my housemate, after all." A sigh brushes past his lips in disappointment as his eyes shift onto Lucretia, but he dips his head to her. "Hopefully I'll catch up with you tomorrow."

"That would be wonderful," Dora murmurs and with a bow of her head, continues on her way. Bubbles making noises in her pocket as she went.

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