(1939-01-16) And We're Off to the Races!
Details for And We're Off to the Races!
Summary: What starts as an impromptu after hours Quidditch practice between Angus and Gabriel turns into Genevieve organizing broom races to relieve classicist tensions.
Date: 1939-01-16
Location: Hogwarts Castle, Quidditch Pitch
Related: None.

Its still the middle of winter but the sun is out and the day is surprisingly mild for the season. Classes have ended for the day and out on the grounds of Hogwarts Castle, high over the Quidditch pitch, Angus is doing loops and rolls in the space of the pitch. Almost as if he's showing off, but only to himself.

Gabriel comes in from the changing rooms all dressed up in his silver and blue Ravenclaw Quidditch uniform. Under one arm he carries a quaffle and in the opposite hand he has his broom. When he gets to the pitch and sees there's someone there already he sighs a little bit.

Angus appears to be a Beater in training, for whilst he's throwing loops and rolls, as he reaches maximum G's, one arm snakes out, with a club in it, to use the force of his turns to power a shot.

Gabriel leans up against the entrance tunnel's side and watches Angus. Being fairly new to the whole Quidditch thing himself he really doesn't have a lot of advice to offer. Especially not to a Beater. After a minute or two of this he pushes off the tunnel and hops onto his broom. Flying up to Angus' level but staying well away from the other boy he calls out, "Mind if I use the hoops on the other side?"

Angus nods cheerfully, hanging upside down from his broom, "Och aye. Or we could let a Bludger oot, an' both practice, aye?"

Gabriel takes a moment to think about that then nods, "Sure. Oh, and I'm Gabriel Ward. Ravenclaw." As if all the blue and silver he's wearing didn't make /that/ clear. "Are you sure it won't hurt us? Are there practice bludgers? How much have you played before? I've never seen you in a game, I don't think. You're Gryffindor, right?"

Angus drifts his broom over, "Angus MacMillan. Third. And whit's the point o'PRACTICE bludgers? They wouldnae attack!"

Gabriel chuckles,"I was thinking maybe they have bludgers that attack but are soft. Or maybe they put spots of disappearing ink on you when they hit you? Or maybe they have a way of controlling their speed? Or, or, or they stop right before hitting you and blow a raspberry at you so you know they could have had you!" Gabriel's broom starts wobbling a bit as he gets overexcited. Taking a deep breath he calms down and then, acting as if he hadn't suddenly had an outburst of absurdist creativity, he says, "I'm sure we can pull out a bludger and practice without getting hurt."

Angus grins, "All grand ideas, but they dinnae encourage yehs to no get hit. And dinnae worry. I'll guard yehs."

Gabriel nods once in a decisive way and drops down in a dive. As he nears the entrance to the tunnel he originally came into the pitch from he does a running dismount and disappears into the tunnel, never having let go of the quaffle that was under his arm. A few minutes later he comes back and this time he's dragging a Quidditch ball chest behind him.

Angus yells down, "Just the one! We dinnae wanna be mobbed!"

Gabriel waves his acknowledgement before leaning down to unclasp and open the chest. He releases the restraints on one of the bludgers, ducks out of the way as it zooms out of the chest and then grabs the quaffle. Hopping on his broom he flies back up to playing height, an eye out for the return of the bludger, "I was going to practice my angle shots today so I'll be coming at the hoops almost directly from the sides."

Angus nods, moving to the wrong side of Gabriel, as the bludger loops in. Only at the last moment does he do a spiraling loop over the other boy, and descending inverted smites the bludger away.

Gabriel zooms off and flies along the edge of the pitch towards the hoops. Just before he comes level to the hoops he cuts sharply to the side and throws the quaffle at the middle hoop. The quaffle hits the edge of the hoop and bounces through. Gabriel whoops and raises his arms over his head, elated at hitting the shot, "Yes! Nice hit, by the way!"

Angus applauds at the shot, hand against club, and then suddenly accelerates, skidding to a halt, just by Gabriel, his bat snaking out to intercept the Bludger once more. "Och, thanks!"

Gabriel flies down to pick the quaffle back up and then starts flying towards the opposite hoops, making sure he doesn't end up too far away from Angus, "Thanks. I just started playing this year so I have to practice as much as I can. Did you learn to play growing up or are you just learning now too?"

Angus waves a hand, and casually backhands the bludger. Not too seriously that time, "Och, brooms since Ah wahs old enough tae get on one. Ah've always played Quidditch at home, but it isnae serious, ken? Soft balls only."

Gabriel does a slow roll as he gets close to the hoops and tosses the quaffle while he's upside down. The ball clips the inside of the hoop but this time it catches too much of the hoop proper and bounces back out towards the pitch as Gabriel finishes the roll. "Ack! See, that were being born from regular parents is bad. I never had the chance to practice all these things." Gabriel definitely has a pretty good arm for someone that's never played Quidditch before coming to Hogwarts last year thought.

Angus he grins, "Duggie taught me some, too!" And he puts the broom into a flat spin, swooping down to block the bludger, although a little clumsily

Up in the air over the Quidditch pitch Angus and Gabriel are zooming around. And at least Gabriel is keeping a wary eye out since zooming around them is a loose bludger. After missing a close shot at one of the hoops Gabriel dips his broom and catches the rebounding quaffle before it reaches the ground then zooms back up to level and towards the opposite hoops, "Who's Duggie?" and that's the only question he can get out as he ducks the bludger.

Angus flips his broom out of a flat spin, and does a half loop to intercept the bludger again, his bat whapping the black ball away again. "Mah brother!"

Bran is not a Quidditch player, nor even the type to be coaxed up onto a broom - he likes his feet solidly on the ground, thank you very much. But the Pitch makes for a lot of interesting angles, and the lighting is just right, and there are even players obligingly up in the air! So here he comes plodding amicably along the edge of the stands, camera in hand.

Niko was out on the pitch a little earlier talking to Angus, but had to leave to check on something, returning he looks to see Angus engaged with one of the Ravenclaw Chasers. Sitting his knapsack down on the ground and laying his broom across it, he stands there in his Gryffindor Quidditch uniform crossing his arms, he smiles as he watches them, before taking note of Bran, "Didn't know you enjoyed photography too." he says with a small nod.

Adam has been especially enamored with Quidditch the past few days, so when he notices a couple of students flying around the pitch he drags his friend Madeline over that way. "That's one of the Ravenclaw players!" he says, pointing up at Gabriel in his Quidditch uniform. Then he spots Bran and hurries over to join his Housemate. "Hi, Bran!" he says with a smile. "Oh! Are you taking photographs? Neat!" When he sees Niko, who he knows from the Mud Club, he gives the older student a friendly wave.

Gabriel zooms by the section of the stand people have started gathering at. Maybe he does it to show off or maybe he does it because he's trying to keep a decent enough distance between himself and the bludger to make sure Angus can keep it firmly away. Approaching the hoops from underneath he lets the quaffle fly. The oddly shaped ball zips towards the hoop, hits the inside edge of it at the top and bounces off at a good angle to go all the way through. "Heh!" After his shot he calls out to Angus, "Lucky. No brother for me. Just a younger sister and we don't even know if she's coming to Hogwarts or not yet."

And it looks like Angus is totally flying the wrong way- fast and high, and out of the pitch area, and then he sticks a foot out, hooking one of the flagpoles, and doing a massive 180 spin around it, before turning that into a power dive which in turn gives energy to a blow to the bludger which sends it all the way to the ground.

Madeline follows Adam - rather intrigued by Quidditch, herself. It looked like /utter insanity/ to her. Which, let's face it, is /not/ a deterrent. "I saw one of the boys - I think he was Slytherin - at practice, well, he didn't see a bludger coming, and hit him right on the shoulder, and he lost his balance and fell straight off his broom!"

"Oh, aye." Bran returns Niko's nod with a solemn one of his own. "Hoping to be a photographer once I leave school, I am -" A moment of distraction as he hastily lifts his camera to snap a picture of Gabriel's shot. Apparently he doesn't think much of the framing, though: the tip of his tongue is briefly visible in his vexation. Sports photography: HARD. He doesn't even try with Angus's bludger move. "Hello there, Adam, Madeline."

Niko runs his hand through his hair slowly, looking over at Adam, "Oh hey Adam." he says offering him a small nod, his gaze moving back towards the two practicing, "Part of the game." he says to Madeline, "Been knocked off my broom a few times, but you eventually learn to take a hit and stay on your broom, well unless it knocks you out." he says with a smile and a chuckle, "Good ambition." he says with a slow nod to Bran, the smile still on his face.

"Wow!" Adam says to Madeline. "I hope he was okay!" He nods his head up and down in agreement with Niko. "It's the only scary part of Quidditch, but the rest is great! I'm want to learn to play so I can join the Hufflepuff team one day. Need to get good at flying first. Kaiden Sykes says he'll give me tips. He's one of the Hufflepuff Beaters! And he said I might make a good Seeker!"

"Seemed like it. At least, I saw him in the halls the next afternoon," Madeline replies brightly, waving to both Niko and Bran. "Hello!" she declares cheerfully. On her shoulder is one of the MC charms that other students in the Mud Club have been sporting.

"You ask me, the brooms are the scary part." Bran makes this confession amiably, though, so it can't be any great secret shame of his. "I don't have a head for heights to begin with, and then you go adding moving like a maniac in…" He shakes his head, a faint hint of a smile on his face, before his attention shifts towards taking another picture, more carefully this time.

Gabriel dives down to recover the quaffle. As he's coming back up with the quaffle in his hands again he sees Madeline and gives her a big smile and cheerful wave, "HI MADELINE!" The only problem with this is that he stops watching out for the bludger. He sees it at the last moment as it zooms back up from the ground where Angus planted it, dodges off to the side, only to realize he's dodging into the hoops' posts. Rolling over he avoids hitting the posts but in the process one of his legs comes loose from the stirrup and he ends up half hanging from his broom headed for the ground. At the last second he lets go of everything, manages to partially roll over in the air, lands on his feet, stumbles a few steps backward then falls flat on his butt, "Ow…"

Oh, how convenient: the fail is what Bran gets on camera. Good timing!

And the bludger starts to zoom down towards him. And just at the last moment the 3rd year Gryffyndor dives down, and leaps off his broom onto the bludger, and bears it to the ground, "Right… lets get you put away…"

"Brooms aren't scary!" Adam says to Bran. "They're incredible! I've only been flying once, though, and it wasn't very high. But it was really fun!" Just then he notices Gabriel on a collision course with the ground, and his eyes widen in shock. "Oh no!" he says, and then to the fallen Quidditch player calls, "You okay?"

Madeline can't help but burst into giggles at poor Gabriel's plight. Is it kind? … well, maybe not, but it was so /hard/ not to laugh! "HI GABRIEL!" she shouts back after she manages to stifle her laughter. "Are you okay?!"

Niko watches the scene unfold, tilting his head curiously at all of it, "Brooms can be rather intimidating to a lot of people." he says idly, "I feel more at home in the sky personally." he offers with a small shrug, looking at Gabriel he offers, "Good save." with a small smile, it is sincere and obvious that Niko is glad he isn't hurt, just as he starts to head towards Angus to help put away the bludger, a first year runs up to him and gives him a note, after a moment, he tucks it in his Quidditch robes, "Good seeing you all, but being called away again." he says with a chuckle, picking up his knapsack and broom, heading out with a small wave.

"Incredible until you break your fool neck." Bran probably doesn't mean to sound incredibly dour, but, well. Having seen enough Quidditch matches to be inured to their hazards, he calmly snaps another photo before calling out to Gabriel: "You alright, then?"

Gabriel gets up from the white sand that lines the ground around the hoop posts and starts dusting himself off, giggling the whole time, "I'm fine. Thanks everyone for asking." Once he's got most of the sand off himself he goes over to recover his broom and the quaffle, taking the latter back to the ball chest and helping Angus put the bludger away when he gets there. "Sorry to cut the show short."

Adam looks relieved when Gabriel announces that he's fine, and he feels safe to grin as the others giggle about it. "That was some really good flying, though!" he calls. He glances over at Bran. "No one's ever broken their neck playing Quidditch!" he says. But then he bites his lip. "Er, have they?"

Angus finishes wrestling the Bludger in, and then says, cheerfully, "Only temporarily, usually." He gives a grin, "It was a good wee practice. Should do it again. Ah goat most o' whit Ah wanted done. Just the Immelman, the Stallturn, and th' turn off the stands tae work on."

"Oh, Gosh, I bet they have," Madeline counters in an almost /awed/ sounding voice. "Though that'd be just awful, wouldn't it?" Then she raises her voice to call to Angus and Gabriel, "Great flying!"

As the praise starts flowing in Gabriel decides him and Angus should bow. So he grabs the third year's hand and raises both of his arms and the captured Angus arm over his head. Then he bows like actors do when they're doing a full cast bow. Hopefully for the little Ravenclaw Angus catches on and plays along or there's some embarrassment coming in the future.

"Real sure they have. Most of time the Healers will catch it 'fore they die, like." Bran is just incredibly comforting. With both flyers now out of the air, the Hufflepuff starts to lower the camera - but then Gabriel starts bowing, and Bran, with a telltale twitch of a smile forming at the corners of his mouth, obligingly moves forward a few steps to get a better angle to take a picture.

There's a momentary pause, as the Scot looks confused, then realizes, and he too bows, vaguely synchronized, "If'n you've enjoyed this, mebee come back another time. Ah'm here all week!"

Adam frowns at Bran and starts to worry that Quidditch is more dangerous than it seems. Maybe he'd better not take it up after all. But when he sees Gabriel trying to lead Angus in an elaborate bow, he bursts into a fit of laughter. Grinning, he claps with enthusiasm and says, "Yes, well done! Very good!"

"They can heal that?" Madeline says in an awed voice. "But that's- that's…" She bites her lips then adds, "If they can fix that - just think of all the Muggle lives they could save!" Maybe they really do need to stop this whole secrecy thing? She'd love to not have to keep everything a secret from her friends back home! She's so lost in thought, she almost forgets to applaud. /Almost/.

Oh oh! Someone's started up on the medicine conversation. Quickly abandoning the bow, and pretty much everything else, Gabriel hurries over to the stands, "They can! And they can fix so many other things with magic too! But then again, Muggle can do a lot with medical science. Did you know most wizards don't even know what a bacteria or a virus is? Its one of the things I want to do when I grow up. Be the first person to combine the best of Muggle science and Wizarding magic to create a cohesive medical treatment system!"

Angus says, thoughtfully, "Back teria? Is that the end furthest away from where they give you the tea and cakes?"

Photograph acquired! "Nice flying, mates." Bran lowers the camera with a satisfied expression, and starts fiddling with the lens, his face taking on a certain zen. It doesn't last, though, as the other Muggle-borns start talking about crossing the streams. "I s'pose as they could," the older boy observes, carefully, a line forming between his brows. He keeps his eyes focused on the camera. "But you have to ask about what the costs would be, doing something like that."

"They don't know about bacteria?" Madeline asks in surprise, blinking at Gabriel for his sudden enthusiasm for the topic. Then the bell at the school begins to chime, and the girl looks at it in surprise. "Oh! I promised Chastity I'd look over her charms assignment with her. I better go to the library!" She starts running off towards the castle, waving over her shoulder. "See everyone later!"

Adam sort of knows what bacteria and virus mean, at a very basic level, but he keeps his mouth shut in case he looks like an idiot trying to explain it. "Oh, d'you want to be a Healer and a doctor then?" he asks the Ravenclaw boy. When Madeline says she's leaving he turns and waves back to her. "Bye, Maddie! See you later!"

Angus picks up his broom. "Virus? I dinnae ken was Vire is, but they'd better no try to do anythin' like that tae us."

Gabriel laughs and shakes his head, "No, bacteria are tiny little animals that you can't see with the naked eye. Some of them are good for you and some bad. When the bad ones get inside you they cause things like colds and the flu. Same thing with viruses." When he says that he winces a little bit, clearly aware that that's not true but also knowing viruses are /soooo/ much harder to explain. Instead he answers Adam's question, "I do. My father is a Doctor. But Wizards don't have Doctors so I figure I can become a Healer and a Doctor both."

Angus says enthusiastically, "Like burrowing fleas, y'mean? Some o' they beasties can eat your head clean owf."

"That's great!" Adam tells Gabriel. "Then you can help both wizards and Muggles! Maybe I should be a Healer too! But I want to be a curse-breaker. Or an Auror! Or a famous Quidditch player! Or someone who looks after magical creatures…" He really can't make up his mind. He grins at Angus, trying not to laugh. "They're much smaller than fleas. You can't even see them! I wonder if fleas have bacteria too."

Angus looks suspicious, "Somethin' that yehs cannae see? And it's an animal? And smaller than a flea. Sounds like someone makin stuff up tae explain a curse."

"Afternoon, Evans." Satisfied with the state of his camera, Bran tucks it carefully away. And then, not unkindly, he interjects: "That'll be no easy thing to do - being a doctor and a healer, like. There's a separation there, and for good reason. And no small amount of schooling for both, that you couldn't double up on."

Gabriel opens his mouth to say something in response to Adam's list of things he would like to do and then he's asking the questions about fleas having bacteria. Slowly Gabriel closes his mouth, thinks about it for a bit then finally shakes his head, looking mildly annoyed. "You know… I don't know if they do. Bacterium are definitely small enough to be able to live on a flea but who knows. Maybe they've evolved special poisons in their body to keep them bacteria free." Then he turns to Angus, shaking his head, "No, they're real. I've seen them. Muggles have this thing that's called a microscope. Its like a telescope but designed to let you see really small things. My father has one and I've seen bacteria through it." Finally he turns to Bran with a confident nod, "There is a lot a studying to do. But I know I can do it if I really want to. It'll just take some work."
He completely ignores the part about there being a reason for the separation. After all, everything changes.

"I bet they do!" Adam says. "They're so small they could be anywhere! I wonder if fleas ever get sick. Imagine a flea having a cold, that'd be funny! A flea sniffling and sneezing and too sick to bite anyone." His eyes widen at Gabriel. "You've used a microscope? That's amazing! I've always wanted to look through one. I've looked through a telescope, though. That was really neat! What do bacteria look like?"

Angus catches the weak point, "Och aye. These Backed Eria? But no the Viruses? So how dae ye ken they exist?"

Bran's eyes lift ever-so-briefly heavenward at Gabriel's response, but he holds his tongue on further objections. No reason to quash nerdy Ravenclaw dreams early, is there? The Hufflepuff takes up a perch leaning against the fence between the pitch and the stands, and listens with interest to their conversation. The group of boys are clustered in that vicinity.

On Angus's objection, Bran interjects: "Don't know the sciences well, I don't - but Muggles usually figure things out by elimination. They don't always need to see it to figure out how it works, at least more or less."

Gabriel raises a finger in the air with a big grin, "But we can see it! About eight years ago somebody invented what they call and electron microscope! It lets you see even small things than bacteria. And take pictures of them! I saw a picture of a virus in one of my father's journals. And bacteria look like a lot of things but the most common ones I saw look like little circles of jelly with all these wavy little arms or tentacles lined up all along the outside of them."

"Wow!" Adam says, impressed that Gabriel has seen bacteria with his own eyes. "I want to see them! And what about viruses? Have you seen them in a microscope too? Or just the bacteria?" He pauses as something occurs to him. "Wait, did you say there're even smaller things than bacteria?"

Angus looks even more skeptical, "Aye? Well, I've no got any back-teriuls, and nae front-erials neither. Dinnae be so soft. It's a Muggle thing."

It's not an unusual sight, to see the blond chaser out on the pitch. In general, it tends to help her moods; or even sitting beneath the stand working on her homework. Twas likely the latter for which she was headed today. What with her not being in her flying leathers and still carrying around her satchel. At best Jenny still looked a smidge distracted with the world, but the collection of people /was/ drawing the eye.

"If you ever had a cold, you had germs." Bran shakes his head solemnly at Angus's statement. "But the way a Wizard cures is different than how a Muggle does. It's the same, but different. Like," he dutifully fishes into his robes, retrieving the earlier-seen gadget, "my camera. Part of it's the same whether it's a Muggle or Wizard photograph. All in how light interacts with the film, it is. And then it differs during the development, see?" The Hufflepuff catches sight of Jenny's approach out of the corner of his eye. After a second's consideration, he dutifully nods at her.

Gabriel frowns slightly at Angus' disbelief then decides that seeing is believing. "Tell you what, Angus. I'll try to get my father to send me a microscope. There's even bacteria in the water we drink. If he can't send one then you can come visit us next break and I'll show you on the one at home." Then he smiles at Adam and nods,"There are things smaller than bacteria. Like atoms! Electron microscopes can see atom! The smallest thing in the world. And the scientists say /everything/ is made out of them!" And switching topics at the speed only Gabriel can he says, "I didn't know wizards used cameras until know. I thought they just waved their wand at something and conjured a picture. And how do they make the pictures move? Are they really alive in some way or is it like in the talkies? How come pictures don't have volume anyway? And paintings! How do they make the painting move?"

When he notices Bran nodding at the new arrival, Adam smiles and gives Jenny a friendly wave even though he doesn't know her. But his attention returns quickly to Gabriel. "Wow, everything is made of atoms?" he asks. "Like your broom and the Bludgers and the grass? All of them? What about us? Are we made of atoms too?" He pulls back the sleeve of his robes and brings his arm right up to his eye as if he could somehow see them himself, though he knows they're even smaller than bacteria. But he soon looks to Gabriel again. "Oh, can I look at the microscope too? If your father sends one, I mean. I really want to see!"

Angus gives a sudden laugh, "Och! Ah ken whit's happened!" He says, very gently, as though to an idiot, "Y'ken the Muggles tell tales that are nae true? There wis this auld couple near us, whit told me aboot faeries. And whit they said isnae true!" He nods firmly, "These Viruses'll be the same, you merk mah wirds!"

Whilst Bran's nod was understated, Adam's wave is returned with an easy grin as the girl makes her way closer to the group and it's apparent that she's listening. There's a slightly perplexed look on her face for the bits of things that she doesn't understand, like all that bacteria talk but it didn't stop her from joining the group. "I unno," Jenny ventures her opinion in after Angus speaks, "I mean, the Muggles don't really get to see anything about our world, mostly and they think the tales we tell them are false and I mean, you have to admit that it's kinda neat the way the two worlds combined sometimes, like with the pictures." A little nod there, towards Bran's camera.

Entirely out of his depth when it comes to questions of atoms or viruses, Bran sticks to what he DOES know. And that's photography. "Muggles invented the camera - then Wizards put a bit of a spin on it. But it's the same thing either way, really; this," i.e., his camera, "is Muggle-make, same as any Wizard-owned camera I ever heard of. It's a Retina, they make them in Germany." He is SO PROUD of it, too, you can see it in how he holds it for Gabriel to see. It's a nice (if budget-friendly, Bran is poor) model! "I don't know that anyone knows exactly how the pictures move - but my guess is it's the photographer or painter putting a bit of their own memory into it with magic, like. And that would explain why it is my photos only do the same thing over and over, like memories of the same few seconds, see? But the portraits in the hallways have basic personalities, like. 'Cause the painter put more time and magic into 'em. Make sense?"

Gabriel nods and nods and nods. One to answer Adam, "Yes, of course you can see if I can get one here." another to greet Genevive, "You're Geneieve Solomon arn't you? Claire made me study up on you when I was picked to be a chaser for Ravenclaw. It should be fun when I get to play a real game!" The last to Adam as he examines the camera,"That's pretty neat. And I bet it takes a lot of practice to get really good pictures so that the people in them are doing fun things and not just boring old stuff like sitting in a chair and tapping their foot."

"Yes!" Adam says when Gabriel agrees to let him see the microscope. "I can't wait! I want to see bacteria and viruses and atoms. I hope your father says yes!" He listens with interest as Bran explains Wizard photographs. "So d'you know how to make them move then?" he asks the other Hufflepuff. "I want a moving photograph of myself to send to my parents!"

As Bran goes on to explain about cameras and paints, something that goes over her head without much effort, Jenny just gives the occasional nod, before she chuckles. "Kinda makes you wonder who invented the broom first, huh? Betcha they never thought we'd use it for flying," the girl grinned. "But aye, I'm Jenny," the chaser answers Gabriel. "Though really it's my mum you ought to have been studying on. She was an amazing player. Assistant coach to the Appleby Arrows now! But if you want any flying tips, I'd be happy to help you out," offered. Though this microscope talk does have her pondering. "Hey, you think, if we took something like, a frog and then transfigured it into a bird, if the micro thingie lets you see what's inside, if you could look at the blood, you think it'd still be the same? Or could we see the magic in it?"

Angus gives Jenny a grin, "Aye? Is that offer to everyone? Because I'll learn frae anyone that's offerin'!"

"Picture-taking is harder than it looks," Bran agrees, with a subtle hint of restrained pride. He's GOOD at photography, after all. And to Adam he says, "Sure. If you come by the Arts Club sometime, I'll show you how it's done. All in the solution you use, it is. Could make Muggle-taken photographs move, even, I think - though that I don't know for sure." He's hesitant for a second after Jenny's input (about cameras, not Quidditch - Bran Reese does not care about Quidditch), but then suggests: "Probably someone invented those before the split. Though not sure, I guess. Where I'm from," Wales, says the accent, which is not light, "flying's not much part of the lore about witches."

The pitch. He figured that's where he would find her. Marcus arrives, his stride casual as he takes a moment to consider the gathering. As he approaches, he is completely unaware of the ongoing conversation. "This is a very interesting mix of people," he observes as he gets closer. "Almost the making of some silly joke," he adds, teasingly and flashing a smirk. He approaches, upnods at the group and makes his way toward Jenny.

Adam tries to be nice to everyone no matter what House they're in, and so far Jenny doesn't seem like a mean, scary Slytherin at all. "Oh, d'you play Quidditch as well? That's great! I'm going to learn to play. I want to play for Hufflepuff! Can you teach me too?" He gives her a wide, hopeful smile and then, when Marcus arrives, he gives the second Slytherin a friendly wave just like he gave Jenny, though he doesn't know him any better than he knows her. "Really?" he says to Bran, his eyes lighting up. "That'd be incredible! I showed them a picture of a unicorn that moved, but it got all scrunched up. A photo of me'd be great!"

Angus parks his broom from his shoulder into the air, at an appropriate height, then sits on it. Yep. DIY park bench.

As he sees Marcus approach Gabriel's good cheer evaporates like water on a hot skillet. He tries so hard to be subtle about moving around so he's as far from Marcus as possible without leaving the group that its made even more obvious than it would have been if he'd just done it with no effort at subtlety at all. Forcing a smile he says, "Hi." then just moves on to smile a little more honestly at Genevieve, "Some tips would be welcome." Maybe Jenny's got a reprieve for being a Quidditch player or because of her mom. Or maybe its just because she's a girl and Gabriel is getting to that age, even thought he won't admit he likes girls yet…

"Chaser," Jenny answers Adam, "Since my second year. Missed the last game though. Spliced half my foot off, if you want the truth. Nasty bit of business that was. So let that be a lesson. Be careful with apparating, because you'll want to keep all your parts!" It came with a grin though, as the girl used a cushioning charm to park her rear on.

"You're probably right," Jenny offered back to Bran, before grinning at Angus and Adam. "An I'd be more than happy t'help the both of you. We can do impromptu little lessons maybe? And the pair of you can come at the same time?" Jenny's dad is a Hufflepuff and her lack of being biased is well known. "You too, if you want," she adds, including Gabriel in the mix with the same easily welcoming smile. "I'm told I give good bribes too," she continues, flashing a cheeky grin in Goyle's direction when she spots him. "Only, for you all…chocolate maybe? Or something else from the sweets shop down in Hogsmeade? What'cha think?"

Fifteen-year-old Bran gives a full-body WINCE at Jenny's reference to foot slicing. Just what a boy who's just now getting his first lessons wants to think about! THANKS, Solomon. And now there's another Slytherin incursion into the group! To soothe himself, the Hufflepuff lets his attention shift towards his camera. Fiddling with lenses makes everything better.

To Jenny, Marcus offers a genuine smile. Angus gets something passing for a indulgent grin. The others? Well… not so much. Adam, Gabriel and Bran get a look, and not a very nice one. In particular, the Slytherin's gaze rests on Gabriel. "Hello Ward," he says, and flashes him a smirk, one that isn't friendly at all. In fact, there is a predatory quality to it. An animal getting ready for a hunt. Listening to Jenny, however, causes Marcus to settle, at least for now. Although eyes fall on Gabriel every now and then, as to remind him that he's here. And watching him.

Adam shudders. "That's awful!" he says. "I've never had anything sliced off when Apparating, but I haven't done it on my own yet." Apparition accidents can't dampen his excitement for flying tips, however. He grins at Angus when Jenny agrees to help them. "You would?" he says to the girl. "Yes! That's so nice of you. I can't wait! I bet I'd be a good…" He falters upon seeing the look Marcus gives him, and he takes a nervous step towards Bran. Safety in numbers!

Angus's broom drifts casually higher. He looks totally comfortable on it. But of course, he is a MacMillan.

Thanks, Marcus. It's kinda hard, even for Jenny, not to miss the tension that fluttered in the wake of Goyle's appearance and Jenny cuts a look at the boy that should have been tense, if she hadn't also wriggled her nose, rabbit style and then stuck out her tongue. "Did you forget to bathe or something? Because you're cutting a pretty wide birth," she teases, before leaning to the side to offer the boy a shoulder-bump. "He's not as grouchy as he appears, I promise," is offered by way of explanation.

But instead of dwelling on the awkward, "Oh it hurt like the dickens," Jenny agreed, when Bran winced and Adam shuddered. "And I could see my toes wiggling for a minute too, before they fell right out of my boot! But flying?" Her expression actually went dreamy. "There's nothin' else in the world more freeing than that, I think. Sittin' on top of the clouds, seeing the world spread out beneath you, knowing that there's no where you couldn't just…go. Everybody oughta be able to have that. Nobody should be left trapped."

Bran's cheek twitches, once, quite visibly. However, he otherwise maintains a dignified disinterest in Marcus's presence, fiddling with his camera for a few more seconds before there's halfway natural opportunity to shift his attention. To Adam, first, since he's suddenly closer anyway: "Wait until Fifth Year," Bran says, dourly. "They showed us photographs." Because what's Driver's Ed without grisly this-could-be-you pictures!

"Still," he adds, after a moment, "I think I'd rather Apparate than fly. Don't much like brooms, I don't." After a second, and accounting for Jenny's dreamy expression, Bran offers a somewhat apologetic: "Sorry."

Angus grins as he lazily drifts his broom over the group, "Och, whit's nae tae like? Apparatin' makes yehs baulk or puke, an' flyin' makes you feel like yehs own th' world. Whit's nae tae like?"

Gabriel doesn't to Marcus' intimidation react the way one would expect a second year to react. Sure, he crosses his arms in what's a clearly defensive manner and the sense of confidence that usually exudes for him suddenly seems a bit forced but he doesn't shift over to look for support and he doesn't look away when Marcus smiles at him. Until he chooses to focus on Jenny, that is, "Ouch! That sounds awful. Did they use Skele-gro to start growing your toes back? Did you know Muggle doctors can actually sew parts of people back on, if they get to it quick enough? Did they use some sort of spell to stick your toes back on instead? Apparate sounds like fun anyway. I bet its just a matter of paying attention to what you're doing. Where you distracted when you splinched?" To Bran he says, "I'm sorry you don't like flying. Its /SO/ much fun."

Marcus seems completely unbothered by the tension his arrival has created. If anything, he looks pleased by it. He remains pleased as Jenny sticks her tongue out at him. "What?" And at her teasing, he snorts, side-glancing at the others. "She's right," he says, eyes falling on Gabriel for a moment. "I'm grouchier. But, carry on, Solomon," he offers her a little bow, falling quiet then. Still, he looks at her with a fond expression as she speaks about flying. Amusement touches his lips as he notes Gabriel's posture, but he plays nice, at least for the time being and continues to be an observant more than anything else.

Leoric comes tramping in with his broom tucked over his shoulder, pausing with surprise at the populated pitch. Still, best not to be rude, so he heads over to make with a few hellos, waving his free hand if noticed before polite conversational distances.

Adam bites on his lip as he watches Marcus. "They showed you photographs of people losing body parts when Apparating?" he asks Bran, keeping his voice down lest he draw the ire of the Slytherin boy. "That's horrible!" He smiles at Gabriel and Jenny, however. "I like flying. It's really fun. I've only done it once though, in the class." When Leoric joins them he steps even closer to Bran, so that he's almost hiding behind the older boy, but he manages a tentative wave for the newcomer as well.

"Brooms hate me," says Bran, firm in his belief of inanimate objects' malevolence. "And I hate them. And I've got no head for heights, I don't. Or going fast." He's just a general hater of fun, isn't he? "My own two feet suit my needs just fine, anyhow." And that, says his expression, is that.

Adam's reaction to Leoric is noted, as is his increasing proximity. Bran suppresses (somewhat visibly) the instinctive twitch at having his personal space invaded, and goes so far as to even pat his fellow Muggle-born on the shoulder. Once. A little gingerly. But he means well. As for Leoric himself, he just has a polite, "Evening."

Angus casually drifts a bit higher, and rolls his broom, so he's hanging upside down from it, hair dangling, "Och, brooms are lovely!"

"Selwyn," Marcus greets the new arrival, his tone neutral and lacking on the animosity found in his eyes whenever he looks at one of the muggle-borns. "Maybe they have a reason to hate you. But it figures, that you wouldn't appreciate broomflying," his words are in response to Bran, and he shrugs. Seeing Adam's reaction to Leoric's arrival, causes Marcus to smirk in response. "So much tension."

Gabriel, much like Bran, greets Leoric with a smile and a "Hi. You're the Hufflepuff Keeper, aren't you? I had to study you too, to get ready for this year's games. There was a lot of studying Claire wanted us new people to do. But it was kind of fun getting to know you without knowing you. I'm Gabriel Ward, one of Ravenclaw's new Chasers." He trails off as he notices Marcus being snide at Bran and kind of defends the older boy, "Yeah, they don't like him because he doesn't like them. Its probably a self-fulfilling prophecy kind of thing. He expects brooms to be dangerous so he subconsciously doesn't handle them as well as other people."

Adam glances up at Bran with a brief smile, taking the pat on his shoulder as a reassuring gesture. Then, as though realizing that he's standing too close, he gives the older boy some space, though he still sticks close by. But when he looks up and sees Angus hanging upside down in the air, he can't help but grin. "That looks fun!" he calls up to him.

"He's grouchier, yes, but, I'm cuter." Is Jenny's solid defense. The little Slytherin Chaser is standing with Marcus, along with the rest of the group, who aren't particularly engaged in practice. Mostly, because Jenny already has today. Twice. Like her mother, she's going to be famous. But..she's also going to stand close enough to Marcus to give him a little hip-bump. "They did have to regrow my toes," she offers and then, peers upways at Marcus again. "So..how's that studying going?"

Bran tries to hide his visible relief at Adam's move away from him. 'Tries' being the operative word: he's not very good at it. Nor is he very good at making the smile he gives Marcus especially sincere looking… and it levels almost immediately into a standard flat line of restrained displeasure. Very :|

"Could be that," is all he says, neutrally. His tone is subtly warmer when his attention turns to Gabriel: "Hooch said it was that, though, aye. Especially when I never did like high places." The Hufflepuff gives a slightly prim shrug, and starts to rise out of his seat, nodding a restrained greeting to Lillian as he does so. "Never did matter. Don't need to be a flier to be a Wizard."

"Ward, you do much better when you listen, rather than speak," Marcus tells Gabriel as he sort of jumps to the defense of Bran. Still, his tone is mild, all things considered and maybe it has something to do with that hip-bump that Jenny gives him, which he is quick to return. Bumpbump. "Oh, it's going great," Marcus flashes her a grin. "It'll be time to collect soon, I'm sure. I'm almost done with that report," he arches an eyebrow at her.

Leoric returns any greetings he received, moving to stand companionably close to the group and listen in, getting a feel for things.

Adam, noticing how relieved Bran looks when he moves away, mistakes the displeasure on his face as intended for him. No longer quite as upbeat as he was before Marcus showed up, he decides that he should follow Marcus's advice for Gabriel and keep quiet for the moment, listening in silence.

"Marcus," Jenny grumped, with a hint of a frown and a slightly harder bump in the boy's direction. "Merlin's balls, what's Ward done?" And he was upsetting people, or wait, no…Bran was..Adam had.. "So, I have an idea." Jenny offered, amusement in her eyes while she attempted to change the topic into something that was less than everyone clamming up. "Reese doesn't like flying but the rest of us seem to, barring one of the Selwyn twins, which I can never tell apart, so…how about we have a race and Reese can be the judge? We can take turns doing little heat matches, whatcha think?"

Adam might follow the advice but Gabriel definitely doesn't. He does tighten his arms a bit more where he has them crossed over his chest but his voice is steady when he answers back, "Pfft! You only want me quiet so that I don't make you look bad…" And he might have continued along with that thought if Jenny hadn't spoke up. Instead he quiets down and listens to her idea, which perks him right up, "Oooo… I like that. And Reese might be able to get some good shots of us racing too!"

Leoric says, "Wait a minute. I'm amenable enough to a broom, but I think Elric's even more into it than I. Am I the one doesn't like to fly?" He seems confused and amused. "I'm up for a race, I suppose."

Marcus, making things awkward at Hogwarts since 1933. He blinks innocently at Jenny as she grumps at him, and ouchies quietly when she bumps him harder than usual, bumping her back, and narrowing her eyes at her. It doesn't last, as he ends up smiling in her direction.

Not so much smiling at the others, though, at least the Muggle-born. Still, he plays nice, that is, until Gabriel opens his mouth. He's about to reply to the boy, when he glances at Jenny. There's a deep breath, and when he looks at Gabriel, is to put a finger to his lips, to quietly shh him. He shrugs in response to Jenny. "Sure." He hip-bumps her.

"Ummm," says Bran - and he sounds genuinely torn about this, because A) BOO BROOMS, but B) Jenny is being so nice and diplomatic and he likes that, but C) he has other things to do, but D) it would do him good to be outside for a bit longer. But finally he decides. "I can do that, aye." And thus let him fall gracefully into the scenery for a little bit, camera at the ready for dramatic photo snapping.

That gets Adam's attention. The first-year Hufflepuff looks round at Jenny, his eyes lighting up. "Yes!" he says. "I want to race! Whose broom do I use? One of the school ones?" Gabriel's suggestion has him even more excited, and he turns to Bran and says, "Oh, yeah! Can you take pictures of me racing? I want to show my parents that I can fly!"

Gabriel giggles at Adam's enthusiasm and says, "Well, if you're in a heat I'm not in you can use mine." He offers his broom up for Adam's inspection. A new looking Cleansweep Two that looks reasonably well looked after. Gabriel definitely doesn't take the broom care kit out every night but he must take it out at least once a month.

Jenny is just one of those girls. She doesn't think she's pretty, her nose has been broken far too many times for that and she's spliced more than her foot, truth be told. But she loves Quidditch and people who are happy, and whilst Marcus shushing Gabriel did merit the kind of suspicious look that suggests there's a story to be found there, she's enjoying the energy and excitement from the agreements.

"Thank you!" Is the all too warm praise offered Bran, before she looks between the others, considering. "How bout we all use school brooms, to be fair? That way if someone has to race someone else, it's all on skill rather than brooms." Not that Jenny didn't have one. The girl wasted zero of her allowance on clothes and bummed more supplies than she ever bought for classes. Her one grand splurge, was the Cleansweep Three and that broom got more attention than any of her boyfriends ever had.

Marcus raises a hand in surrender to Jenny to indicate he's backing off. For now. He didn't come in carrying his own broom, as he was looking for her. "You have space on that broom of yours for two," he asks Jenny, grinning at her. But, after a look to the group that has him growing a little serious, he shrugs to himself. "Meh, why not," he decides, regarding racing with the others. The Muggle-born still get wary looks, but he leaves them alone.

Adam looks at Gabriel in amazement. "Wow, really?" he says, taking the broom in his hands with a great deal of care. He doesn't know at all what to look for in a broom, but he pretends he does and looks it over anyway. He does, however, shoot a nervous glance over at Marcus when he agrees to race as well. "Oh, I don't mind what brooms everyone uses," he then tells Jenny with a grin. "I've only flown once before, so I probably don't have a chance against you Quidditch lot anyway!"

Gabriel nods in response to Genevieve's suggestion that everyone use school broom. Its only fair since not everyone has their own. Letting Adam examine his at his leisure Gabriel goes and gets the school broom. Yes, he even brings on for Marcus. "Here we go. Grb you steeds, Ladies and Gentlemen. And don't worry, Adam. I only just started flying last year. Its easy-peasy."

Offering a wave to Bran, as he settles into position, Jenny watches as they settle and offers Gabriel the type of grin that suggests she appreciates the kind of consideration he gave in going to get the brooms. "You sure you don't want in on this?" The teasing question is tossed Bran's way, whilst Jenny only grins at the response, before turning her focus back to the issue at hand. "A. Adam. B. C. D. E. F. G. Gabriel. Okay. You two can pair off for the first heat. We'll race down to Bran and then, back here," with a hipbump and a quick kiss to Marcus' cheek, Jenny strides a measured distance away, "To me." Gauging the distance between Bran and herself. "Without flying into either of us! Racers, take your positions!"

Marcus looks at the broom that Gabriel gives him, and studies it thoroughly as to make sure it hasn't been hexed or sabotaged. Any disdain and grumpiness drains away the moment Jenny kisses Marcus' cheek. He smiles at her, a genuine kind of smile that nobody here, except her, has seen him offer. Still, when his eyes return to the broom, he looks wary again, and glancing over at Adam and Gabriel, he jumps on his broom, if only to have a place to watch the first heat from.

"Thanks!" Adam says, grinning at Gabriel as he hands the boy his broom back and takes one of the school ones. "This'll be fun! Giddyup!" He sets his broom on the floor and does as he was taught in flying class, commanding it to jump up into his hand. It seems he thinks he has to follow the procedure to the letter. Then he climbs on and hovers in the air, looking a little shaky as he sets off to get into starting position.

For his part Gabriel puts his broom down at the edge of the pitch, somewhere were he can see it at all times. He smirks a little when he sees how closely Marcus examines the broom he's been given but doesn't say anything. Instead he hops on his broom and flies calmly over to the Jenny designated start point, "God luck, Adam. And remember, have fun!"

"On your marks," Jenny begins, lofting her hands up into the air as she turns to face the two racers, "Get set…," a smile spared Adam, while he seemed so careful and shaky, "You'll do fine. Just remember it's about having fun." A glance towards Marcus, floating there in cool control. What must he think of her now? Too late for that! "GO!" And Jenny lowered her arms, signaling them off!

Switching to school brooms is met with a touch of disappointment on Leoric's part, though not disdain. He sets his aside and moves to a good place to watch the youngsters fly.

Watching the racers get ready, Marcus hovers over to Jenny and next to her. "You, are having too much fun with this," he quietly tells her, and while his gaze remains wary when he looks over at the Muggle-born, there is fondness when he looks back at the Slytherin girl.
His attention returns to the race, as Adam and Gabriel go at it.

Adam flashes both Gabriel and Jenny a smile and nods his head, but as he sits there waiting for the race to start, any fears he has give way to excitement. As soon as Jenny says go, he leans forward and shoots off as fast as he dares. He manages a respectable, though not great, speed as he flies straight, but he slows upon nearing Bran and does a careful turn. Then he picks up speed again on the way back, and he might as well be racing alone for all the attention he gives the others, so intent is he on his own flying.

Gabriel is watching Marcus instead of Genevieve when the go signal is given so he's not only late to take off but he's wobbly as well. He's close to catching up to Adam when they hit the turn but he's trying to hard to catch up that he leans too much into the turn and flips over. The time it takes him to straighten back out is enough for Adam to keep his lead and cross the finish line ahead of him. Instead of getting angry Gabriel smiles and waves at Adam, "Nice job!"

"I might be," Jenny answers Marcus, amusement in her tone and for a moment, the tall chaser rocks back into the boy in a little bump, before she catches sight of Gabriel almost falling. There's an open look of concern on her face, two great strides taken forward as if she were about to start running if he wasn't okay and when he balances out, she eases back into her position, shoulders slumping with a relieved sigh.

"And don't you dare laugh at that either," quietly warned the other Slytherin boy, before she hoots out a cheer, fist pumping at Adam's accomplishment. "Good job!" And if he'll allow it, the young Hufflepuff with get a little hair ruffle for his efforts.

"But you did well too, Ward. We'll work on cornering, okay? It can be really really tricky if you're not used to it. You okay?" Inquired, whilst offering a wink towards Leoric where he floated. "A comes before E, but it looks like you're going to be stuck with me, that be alright? We'll do elimination rounds until there's only one winner."

From his position in the dubious safety at the edge of the Stands, Bran's camera is audible as the first race comes to a finish. He announces what everyone already figured out: "Irving!" And then right back to photographs! Click! Click!

Leoric says, "I certainly don't mind, Solomon. A touch more fair overall- you'll not catch me upset over that." The Hufflepuff gives a slight smile and mounts his broom to swoosh over to Jenny. "Do we have a replacement finish line?"

Gabriel hops to his feet and goes to take Jenny's place then he changes his mind. Maybe because Marcus is there. Instead he goes to stand at the other end of the 'track', next to Bran, "I'll be happy to work on cornering. Right now what I'm really good at is shooting!"

Adam looks round as he comes to a stop, hovering in midair. "I won?" he asks, peering at Gabriel in surprise. Then he grins up at Jenny as she ruffles his hair. "I won! Wow!" He looks to Bran, beaming. "Bran, Bran, did you see that? I won! Did you get a photograph?" Quite proud of himself, he drifts off out of the way of the next racers. He has no idea that Gabriel had a late start and some difficulty with the turn.

"And I even think you're deriving far too much fun out of making me mingle with them," Marcus playfully accuses her, but doesn't seem truly bothered by it. He bumps her a little with his broom. And of course he was about to laugh, he had opened his mouth even. And then she nips that on the bud and he snorts, offering a bit of a scowl. "Take away all the fun, will ya?" His tone remains playful. Looking at the two purebloods that are about to race, he offers, "I'll be the finish line."

Madeline is done helping Chastity with her charms assignment, it seems, as she strolls back onto the pitch just in time to watch the end of… a race? "YEAH ADAM GO!" the girl shrieks, waving her arms over her head! She didn't know Adam liked brooms like that! She dashes over to join the other students, grinning broadly as she comes. "I missed most of it!" she declares in disappointment.

"Not at all," Jenny assures Madeline, "Just the first. There's about to me some more, though. Did you want to join?" Inquired, before she kicked her broom down and straddled the perch easily; hoovering level with Marcus. "It's fun. You said you liked fun. Besides, it's good for you. I've a feeling you fluffed your report just to get extra inches and this is penance." The girl teased, before watching Adam bounce off cheering and Gabriel retreat. "Ready Selwyn? Goyle's gonna be the finish line. So, in fairness, I'll let him be the one to say go." Wink.

Leoric nods and smiles out of one side of his mouth at Jenny. "I'm prepared to fly when you are, Solomon. I'd say let's try to have fun, but ah, you've been having it since you thought up the whole thing. So instead- good luck!"

"My report is impeccable, without reproach I'll have you know," Marcus notes. "And I still haven't collected," he adds, narrowing his eyes at Jenny. "But, penance it is. I plan to make you make up for it later," he assures the Slytherin girl, with an affectionate grin. With a deep breath, he shrugs, looking between Leoric and Jenny. "Fine. One, two," screw three, "GO!" He signals for the race to begin.

"Maddie!" Adam drifts over to his friend and lowers himself so that he's right next to her, but he doesn't seem to want to get off his broom just yet. "Did you see me race? I won! I hope Bran got a photograph!" Still pumped from the race, he whirls about in midair and then turns to watch the next race, grinning wildly.

Gabriel has already gotten off the broom and is sitting at the turning point for the race. He smiles at Adam and Madeline, "He did really well. Beat me fair and square."

"Yeah, but.. Adam already raced!" Madeline points out. "I missed it!" Like other races matter. Duh. She gets a thoughtful look on her features, though. "I could race, too…? That would be FUN!" She grins broadly at the thought. "I saw you cross the finish! That's the most important part, right? Congratulations!"

Bran is still here, and still - well, actually, he isn't taking pictures yet, since he's waiting to catch a good snap of Genevieve and Leoric in motion. What? The technology for digital is decades off, he can't waste film!

Blasted boy was distracting! That's exactly what he was and more, it wasn't even her broom. It was a school broom. Stupid blasted things. So Jenny was slow and maybe, just possibly, because of the number of lower class-men involved, she wasn't inclined to showboat. So an effort was put in, but not her all. And when she cornered around Bran and Gabriel, she reached out to ruffle the hair of both boys, before heading back towards the finish line. And Marcus. At whom she was glowering, albeit playfully. Because maybe if she'd not been focused on his words before go and maybe, if he'd not skipped three. "You're a brat."

But now Bran takes a shot (after twitching and making faces at the hair-ruffling, come on, personal space). Leoric's victory, captured for the ages.

Nope, no twitches for Gabriel If he was a cat he would be purring. But that doesn't keep him from hopping to his feet and cheering, apparently for both racer, "Good race! Well done!"

Noticing Madeline now, Marcus takes a deep breath. He closes his eyes, muttering to himself now that Jenny is off racing and can't quite see him. When he eyes the Muggle-born collection, its with a scowl, a scowl that becomes a dark grin, one he directs at Adam. It must be dark, because that is not a friendly smile. No sir. "Yes. Congratulations on that win," he says to the boy, voice dripping a bit with disdain. Stay polite. Stay polite. And then Jenny is there, and everything is much better and he smiles at her, looking pleasant even. "I've never denied that," he replies to his fellow Slytherin, with a wink in her direction. To Leoric he says, "Congratulations, Selwyn," sounding a lot more pleasant than when he congratulated Adam.

Leoric Selwyn and Genevieve Solomon had been racing, prior to that, Gabriel Ward and Adam Irving had raced and the little Hufflepuff had come out the winner. There was a clustered group on the pitch, Bran and Gabriel are standing together marking one end, while Bran takes pictures and Marcus creates the finish line with the small group at the other end, Madeline and Adam chattering about his win.

"You flew well too!" Adam calls over to Gabriel, though in truth he didn't even see the other boy fly, as he was focused only on his own efforts. "You should!" he tells Madeline. "It's really fun! You'd love it!" But his grin fades at the look Marcus gives him. He manages a brief smile in response to the contemptuous congratulations, but then settles into a more subdued silence as he watches the race between Jenny and Leoric.

Madeline's smile falters at Marcus's attitude, but she promptly forces it back into place, in full force. "I bet he did great!" she declares brightly, having no doubt that the sudden change in the other boy's attitude was because of the MC charm she wore on her uniform. "Sure, Adam! But I wanna use /your/ broom. I bet you got the lucky one!" …did she just imply that he only won because- "Err, I mean, you /made/ it into a lucky broom by…"

Lucinda was seated in the stands for a time, watching, she has her Silver Arrow with her but she isn't fighting for a spot in the skies just yet. A few careful notes are jotted in a tiny bound book between glimpses out onto the pitch. Her broom lays by her feet. She's quiet, wrapped up in a fuzzy black and green blanket. Her pliable dragonscale gloves keeping her hands warm as she wrote.

Leoric has had a chance to feel his broom in motion, and isn't distracted by romantic interludes, either. He's not even listening for three. He's listening for go and on the moment it hits his ears, he's off. His overall speed is a touch cautious, but he doesn't slow down a whit for the turn, more than used to sharp maneuvers and corners as keeper. He zips back to Gabriel and cuts a tight curve around him- the clever might notice he's stopping on precisely the same spot he started.

"Much appreciated, Goyle though I suspect-" He says, eyeing the not-really-cranky Solomon with a vague grin, "-that your unorthodox counting might have had something to do with it." He throws Adam a nod- no reason to mistreat the fellow, it's not like he beat out a pureblood. "Irving, well done- that makes it two for Hufflepuff by my count." It's not a house competition, and it's a rather open bit of encouragement for the young housemate.

The whispered words passed quickly around the school that some students were racing. Iggy was soon joining the small group of spectators with broom in hand. "Hiya Madeline." His fellow housemate. "Who's winning?"

Adam sends another hesitant smile to Leoric. "Thanks," he says. He can't help but grin at Madeline. "Hey! I didn't get lucky! Okay, I did. You can use the lucky broom, but if it comes down to you and me, you have to give it back!" He hops off the broom and hands it to her, and then offers Ignatius a quick wave as he joins them.

Camera temporarily stilled, Bran leans on the dividing fence between Stands and Pitch, watching the racers with interest. "Who hasn't gone yet?" the boy calls. "Just Goyle? Too bad we have an odd number -" because hell no does Bran count for this, you maniacs "- unless he's not flying. Or someone else wants to join in?"

"/When/ it comes down to me and you!" Madeline agrees cheerfully, accepting the broom with a broad grin. Turning towards Ignatius the girl adds, "Hello, Prewett! Adam's winning, of course. But that's only because I haven't raced yet. Are you going to race, too?"

Gabriel looks up at the stands and sees both Lucinda and Ignatius. He cups his hands around his mouth to yell out, "Hey, Goyle needs someone to race against him! Who's up?"

Jenny grins, it's completely unrepentant. "Yeah, Goyle. Looks like you're all alone and need someone to race against. Though, I think I heard Madeline say that she might," Jenny teases and then, because it's Marcus and she's not stupid, eases her way over to stand at his side and maybe, loop an arm through his just incase he either A: Gets mouthy or B: Tries to bolt. "Perhaps Adam could race Madeline, since they're friends. Unless Marcus really wants to…" But the look she gave him suggested she'd stop all over his toe if he offered to and was cruel about it.

"You bet." Iggy responds, grinning eagerly, while hooking his feet onto his broom. It was decent for a student. Nothing flashy or eye-catching. "For now Adam's winning." The young freckled boy nods his head towards the one leading in the race. "Hey! Count me in!" He shouts from stands.

"Gotta keep you both on your toes," Marcus remarks to Leoric of the countdown, but flashes a grin at Jenny. Realizing that he's the only one left to race from the original group, not counting Madeline he takes a deep breath. He's about to say something, probably step down from the race, when Gabriel… pretty much calls him out. Smirking, he's about to respond, that is, until he feels Jenny loop that arm around his. That settles the pureblood boy, and he offers a genuine smile, leaning into the girl. So, he doesn't get mouthy, and he doesn't try to bolt. He does cast a look around, not a very friendly one, to see who takes Gabriel on his call. He shuffles his foot some, to avoid any toe stomping by Jenny.

Seeing Prewett step up to the plate, Marcus relaxes and nods to the other pure-blood. "Of course." He says. See, Jenny? He's behaving. Beeeehaviiing.

Lucinda glances over at Madeline and the other boy… then back down to her notes. She is using a Muggle pencil at the moment, better for quick notation in the cold. She's got her silver and black broom nearby. "I want a go." She mutters softly but somehow not bold enough, even with all her pride, to stand up and snag it. Not waiting to be invited per se but it still seemed to take her some time before she hopped on the broom. Watching the other shoot through the air with an expressionless vapid gaze.

"Good boy," Jenny remarks and, with an affectionate squeeze and a shoulder-bump, properly lets Marcus go. After all, he can play. "Just remember, we're using the school brooms to settle for fairness. And there's a couple over there that can be used, from those of us who've already gone," Jenny reminds.

"I'll have a go!" Madeline calls gamely, waving the broom Adam loaned her over her head. She glances around, trying to gauge if she is indeed up - or if she has to wait a little longer.

"Got a broom here somebody can use if they like," calls Leoric, hefting the broom a bit. He glances over when he catches Lucinda's voice asking… well, asking might be generous a term… informing the populace she'd be taking a turn. "I'm thinking Prewett and Goyle would be a good match- maybe Slughorn and, ah…" He glances to Adam for prompting, but remembers the Pirate after a split second. "… Evans. How's that sound?"

Gabriel runs over to Jenny and says, "So its Golye and Prewett, next, right? And Slughorn looked like she was getting up. Maybe she should race Madeline?"

"Two more sets, then." Bran nods, satisfied at the tidy way it's worked out. And perhaps - it's hard to tell - but perhaps just a LITTLE relieved sweet little Evans won't be pitted against Goyle. "And then the victors can compete against each other, eh? Nice and tidy, that is. I'm getting some real nice pictures here."

Adam's about to answer when Leoric remembers Madeline's name, and he nods his head, smiling. "I already raced!" he tells Jenny with a grin. "She has to beat someone else first before she's worthy of racing me!" Then he finds a nice spot and settles down on the grass, leaning back on his elbows so he has a good view of the upcoming races.

"Yes," Jenny agreed, offering a bob of her head in Gabriel's direction. "And with Marcus racing, I'm the finish line again. Do not hit me!" She warns, since the group is growing. "Racers to your marks!"

Iggy takes to the air and hears the volunteering of others that wish to participate in the race. A shame he'll have to switch brooms. Soon enough he joined the others on the field after exchanging his broom for one of the ones issued by the school. The cold had reddened his nose and rosied his freckled cheeks. "Golye huh?" Iggy is flashing a bright smile. "Alright by me. What are the rules?"

Leoric smiles a bit of a long-suffering smile at Gabriel's parroting what he just said. He hands off his broom or sets it near the other school brooms, taking the opportunity while he's turned away from the others to mutter to himself in some foreign language or another.

Marcus has his broom and he grins at Ignatius as the other boy joins him. He goes to the mark, or hovers to it, really and holds on to his broom. "Hit her and I'll hex you," he doesn't sound like he's kidding as he adds that bit to what Jenny said. "Ready," he announces.

While the current wave is gearing up Lucinda finally rises to her feet and shrugs her blanket off into the stands. Wrapping her small bound book in the fuzzy green layers of the blanket. She grabs her Silver Arrow off the ground by her feet and jumps on with a smooth grace; taking to the air in the same instant. With just a gentle inclination of her body she glides effortless over the edge of the stands and coasts smoothly to a place near the school brooms. During the current race she will spend the time sizing them up to go next.

Laughing at the threat from Marcus, Iggy settles onto the school issued broom while looking straight ahead. "Don't tease, Goyle." After a moment he too announces that he is "All set."

Hearing Marcus' words, Jenny smiled, all too warmly and a touch of color might have touched her cheeks. "Okay! Rules are. From me, your starting point, down the field and around Ward, WITHOUT hitting him and from there? Return. Again, to me. Without running me over. Racers ready?"

Lofting her arms up over her head, Jenny caught sight of her cousin drifting down and offered a little finger wave in Lucinda's direction, before her attention settled back onto the pair. 'Good luck, babe', mouthed in Goyle's direction, before Jenny lifted her voice once more. "On your mark. Get set." It was as her arms were falling, that Jenny yelled, "GO!"

Gabriel runs back to his position as turning post. When Jenny mentions his name he raises his arms over his head and waves his hands, as if he wasn't perfectly visible already.

"Hey!" Madeline protests Adam slightly egotistical statement, and uses the handle of the broom to whack him one - gently. "Don't be a brat!" she protests with obvious amusement.

"Ow!" Adam says, exaggerating how hard his friend hit him. "I was just saying! It wouldn't be fair if you raced me first!" Grinning he watches as the race starts, silently hoping that Marcus falls off his broom.

With Gabriel to serve as the official goalpost - and hopefully the one who gets hit if a flier makes a bad move - Bran settles back into the part of this he cares about. Action photography!

VOOOOOSH! Iggy's broom sprints off into the lead and his knitted Griffyndor winter neck scarf flutters in his wake. Speeding along the racing path a couple of times he checks behind him for Goyle, "Keep up Slytherin! I thought this was a race!" Around the ward and back again when he approaches the finish line, rather the girl at the finish line Iggy has one fist in the air. "Yeeeeeah!" He doesn't hit Jenny but he comes dangerously close to doing so. For fun of course.

Poor Marcus. He's way too busy blowing a kiss to Jenny at her mouthed 'Good luck, babe', and because of that, there he goes, missing that signal to punch it. Still, punch it he does, but it's just not enough to catch up with Ignatius. And just like Jenny said, there he goes, taking his broom down the field and around Gabriel, getting veeery close to Ward, but being a good sport and not hitting him as he whips around and returns, finishing after Ignatius. Still, the Slytherin boy is in a good mood as he chuckles and offers a lazy salute to Prewett. "Nicely done, Prewett." Losing to a pureblood? He can handle that. So he takes his broom to Jenny, looping his arm through hers. "Looks like we both end in the loosing column," he tells her.

"GO GRYFFINDOR!" Madeline shouts as Ignatius races, bouncing eagerly on her toes with her broom in her hands. "YOU'VE GOT THIS!" This is much more exciting than the /last/ race! Whose outcome didn't really matter to her.

It takes a certain amount of hefting and persnickety picking over of what's left before Lucinda settle on a broom to use. Once she does she's off without a moment's hesitation. She shoots into the air, drifting nearish where the starting line had been before but staying out of harm's way of course. She looks rather natural on the broom, no nerves now that she was up here.

"His name is Goyle!" Jenny shouts after Iggy, only to offer a faintly narrow eyed look at the boy on his return. "And this isn't about houses, it's about fun. For everyone, not in an attempt to remind people of all the reasons they shouldn't get along. And part of that look, was shared with Madeline, because until she and Iggy, no one had bothered to try and divide them up into specific groups. That said, "Great flying!" Was complimented to Iggy, before Jenny went to go and cozy in against Marcus. "Still feels like winning to me." A little louder, "Hey! Somebody else wanna come be the finish line, I'm gonna steal my fellow loser here and amble on."

"Nice one!" Adam calls to Ignatius, pleased that the nasty Slytherin lost. Then, to Madeline, he adds, "Hufflepuff's still in the lead! We've won twice!" At Jenny's request, he jumps to his feet. "I'll do it!" he says, hurrying over to the finish line to stand there for the race between his friend and Lucinda. "Good luck, Maddie! Don't jinx my broom!"

"I just need to win and then we're tied!" Madeline counters, grinning at her friend and hurrying the few steps to the starting line to mount her broom. Jenny gets a slightly puzzled look from the girl, though - house competition is /fun/! Doesn't everyone enjoy it? Then looking aside at Lucinda, the girl adds cheerfully, "Goodluck!"

"Solomon is right," interjects Bran. His voice is only the slightest bit sanctimonious as he says: "This isn't about Houses, just fun. Good flying, Prewett. Got a nice snap of that turn." Of course Hufflepuff is moderately dominating so far, but hey

"Really?" Mutters Lucinda as she zips over to the finish line and drops in cockily beside Madeline. "This isn't even-" She begins just pursing her lips and shaking her head at the sight of her competition. "Hey Fish Girl." The Slytherin jeers, thinking back to a certain Mermaid conversation. "G'luck," She adds as they kick off, leaping to attention and contorting her face into a determined sneer.

Gabriel doesn't really cheer for the racers like he's done in the rest of the races, probably because Marcus is part of this one. But he also doesn't boo Marcus so that's a plus. When Jenny and Marcus decide to take off he waves, "Thanks for coming up with this. Its been fun!" Then he turns his attention back to the races, especially since the racers in the last one decided to pass so close… Marcus…

Settled on his broom Iggy takes all the praise in stride. "You too Goyle." Then came the correction that has the Gryffindor shaking his head. "A temporary lead!" He smiles then waits for the next race to begin off on the sideline.

"Oh it definitely does," Marcus agrees with Jenny's winning feelings, leaning against her. He flashes her a grin. "And off to be stolen," he notes and nods to Jenny, offering a little wave to the other purebloods. Gabriel and Adam both get a look, a look that is a silent 'I've got my eyes on you'. And with that, he settles to amble on with Genevieve.

Adam looks round at the racers. "Ready?" he asks. When they are, he lifts his arm in the air and starts the count. "Ready, set… GO!" he yells, dropping his arm.

Her first race on a broom /ever/! Madeline's heart is thumping as she grips her broom tightly and kicks off, racing towards Bran. It's a bit wobbly - she lacks very much experience on a broom, but she manages to straighten out as she speeds towards the older Muggle-born. Unfortunately, with each moment she can see Lucinda pulling away, inch by inch! "GO BROOM GO!" she shouts at it excitedly, as she speeds dangerously through the turn. Whoooa - maybe she should have slowed a little more than that! It makes her overshoot her mark a little before she loops around, and back to the starting line… in second place. "Darn. Oh well. That was a great race!" she says towards Lucinda - ignore her disparaging comments.

Lucinda manages sneak out just ahead of the younger girl at the onset! She keeps up the lead for the duration of the race. Having to win because well, vanity and pride insisted she must. Daughter of a Quidditch player, older, pure blood… if she /didn't/ win things might have gotten very dark very fast. As it was she comes around the to the finish line she finally spares a look back to see Madeline- likely just behind her… she'd not been paying attention. Tunnel vision for the win. She sits up haughty and squared shouldered on her broom. "Absolutely crackers." Lucinda agreed, drifting lazily away from the girl without a backwards glance. Just an eyeroll.

Leoric ends up murmuring to himself in French again, but it's with a faint smile as he watches the pair race. He applauds politely as they finish, calling out, "Very well done, both of you!"

Iggy draws his hands up for applause for both participants while he hovers on his broom. "You did well Maddy." He tells his fellow housemate. "Well done. Slughorn."

"Aye, well done, the both of you," Bran echoes, lowering the camera. "Think I got a good shot of you at the bend, Evans," he adds, though there'll be no way to tell for sure until he develops the pictures. "We'll see."

Aw, his friend lost. Adam looks disappointed when Madeline pulls in second, but he smiles at Lucinda. "Well done!" he calls as she wanders off. To his friend he adds, "Good try. That was really close!" He looks round at the others. "So it's me, Leoric, Ignatius, and Slughorn for round two! Who should go against who?"

"Oh, I hope so, Reese!" Madeline says eagerly, smiling at the boy. "Will they be moving pictures? When will they be developed? I've never developed pictures before! How do you do it? Can I help?" Not seeming to mind her loss, Madeline passes the broom back off to her friend with a cheery, "There you are, and I didn't use up any of its luck!" No. Instead she jinxed it.

As he's done for every race except Marcus' Gabriel cheers both contestants on. However, he does focus more of his attention on Madeline. After all, she's becoming a friend /and/ she's not a Slytherin. "Good show everyone! So now we go to the winners bracket. Who are the first two?"

Lucinda just delivers a practiced half bow from her hovering broom. She's probably practiced the bow more than anything else from the guessing. Years of dance helped though, the bow was intended for a stage. She comes back up after sweeping her arm theatrically through the air at no on in particular. Her gaze almost wandering. "Doesn't matter to me." She says in her deeper than average female alto. It's a powerful voice but she doesn't raise to such volume usually. Then again can't mutter to each other on the pitch. Lucy comes around, getting ready for another go among the winners.

"Well…" Since Genevieve has taken herself off, Bran steps up with a suggestion. "Solomon went by alphabet. Not a bad way, is it? So that's Adam and Prewett, and Selwyn and Slughorn, right?"

As for Madeline's question, he offers, with a hint of a smile, "You can come with me when I develop them, how's that, Miss Madeline? Don't know as you've ever seen Muggle photography developed - but I'll show you how Wizards do it."

"That means I'm up!" Adam says. He looks over at Madeline as he hops back on his broom. "No, I must have used up all the luck the first time, sorry! Want to count us down?" He hovers in position at the starting line and shoots Ignatius an eager grin.

"Makes sense to me," comments Leoric to the proposed matching. He loops his hands behind his head, losing a bit of the detached intellectual airs he puts on in the midst of something fun and competitive. "Since Irving's off to the races, I'll stand in as start and finish line. When you're both ready, I'll count."

Iggy's broom carried him to the starting line. "Here we go, think you can win again?" He smirks, nodding to Leoric. "All ready."

"GREAT!" Madeline answers Bran happily, before beaming at Adam. "Goodluck, Adam! You'll win for sure! Sorry, Prewett," she adds, smiling at her housemate good naturedly.

"I know I can!" Adam tells Ignatius, grinning. "I beat an actual Quidditch player!" He beams back at Madeline, hoping she's right, and then turns to nod at Leoric. "Ready!"

Lucinda hovers near Selwyn.. not really paying him much mind. She watches the next race with a stupid grin on her face, empty eyes just sort of bored looking in a way as she awaited her turn.

"In the traditional Goyle method of counting, then," he says, warning them both obliquely about his intended countdown, "Un! Deux!" And here he raises his voice to add to the emphasis on the phrase he's used to replace go, "ALLONS-Y!" With the final phrase, he snaps his hand down.

Competitive mode. Iggy is in for the win. At the moment Leoric's hand drops the Gryffindor's broom takes off into flight. Down the field it would seem the two remain neck and neck, struggling to come out ahead over the other. Iggy makes a sharp turn around Ward before making his return. No taunting for this Hufflepuff. The race draws to an end when he barely makes it over the finish line before Adam.

Adam, thanks to Leoric's warning, is ready for the strange countdown. He takes off at what he assumes is the French word for go, leaning forward and urging his broom on as fast as he can go. He doesn't slow at the turn this time, knowing that he can't afford to with Ignatius right next to him. But he isn't as experienced on a broom, and he can't turn as sharply. He zooms wide around Gabriel and is left behind on the way back. He pushes forward for the last stretch, but it's too late, the Gryffindor's already won. Adam comes in a second later.

Is Bran just the teensiest bit disappointed Adam didn't win that? His face, as he lowers the camera, says this is so, though he still claps magnanimously for the victor once the precious camera is temporarily stowed in the safety of his sleeve. "Best race so far, that was," the Hufflepuff declares. "Neck and neck!"

Gabriel hops up and down in place as he watches the race, "Go go go!" Who he's cheering for is impossible to tell. And once the racers make it to the finish line he just yells, "GOOD RACE! NICELY DONE!" Then he seems to realize just how much time has gone by since he arrived at the pitch. Rushing over to the sidelines he picks his broom up and disappears up the tunnel, yelling up behind him, "Thanks everyone, it was fun! Have to go now! Bye!"

"NICELY DONE, GENTLEMEN!" Leoric cheers them both as they cruise past him for the finish. "Irving, I dare say you might want to look into a broom of your own, you've a bit of natural talent- or luck, which is just as good! You let me know if my brother's not up for coaching you, I'll see if I can spare the time myself. And Prewett! SPOT on racing there!"

"GO ADAM GO YOU CAN DO IT YOU'VE GOT HIM COME ON ADAM!" Madeline shrieks for the entirety of the race, while bouncing on her feet. Oh, she's got this cheerleader thing down. But then Adam comes in just baaaaarely in second. "Awww. That was close, Adam! Great race! Good job, Prewett!" Well. At least it was a Gryffindor that beat her friend.

Lucinda comes around to the starting line after the other two are out of the way. "Selwyn," She offers with a consigned but familiar nod. It's not cold but still far from friendly. She clears her throat at a loss for anything else to impart to the boy. Her head swivels forward and she steadies the broom.

"Congratulations, Prewett, you're promoted to finish line attendant!" Leoric shouts over his shoulder as he goes to reclaim a broom from the school supplies. He mounts and swings it back around beside Lucinda, returning her nod. "Slughorn. Best of luck." That said, he settles in over his broom, prepared to take off.

If Adam was disappointed that he lost, the cheers from the audience cheer him right back up. "Well done!" he tells Ignatius. "That was fun!" He beams at Madeline, but Leoric's praise draws his full attention. "Wow, you really think so?" he asks. "Thanks!"

A good race that got the adrenaline pumping. When it was over the freckled faced Prewett grinned broadly to Adam, "Almost had me there. Nicely done." He's almost laughing, chuckling. "Thanks." He tells the others while hovering on his broom. "This ought to be good." Both arms are folded as he leans back a touch. Finish line attendant… what I clean up the finish line or something?" After a second it dawns on him. "OH… racers.. uh. All set on your brooms? Want a good clean race now you hear? Ward down there doesn't want to lose a hand or anything else that could be useful." With one hand on his broom, still hovering he is facing the new pair of racers, one arm in the air. "On your mark!"

Iggy shouts and drops his hand, "Go!"

"Arms are useful too! And legs!" Madeline adds 'helpfully.' "This is great fun," she adds towards Adam, grinning at the boy. "Isn't this great fun? We should do this again!"

Gabriel agrees with Madeline adding, "And my head and my neck and everything else. All my body is useful. Please don't hit any of me!" The last he says laughing since its been repeated pretty much every race.

The wind. It flickered, just a moment, as Ignatius called for them to stand their marks. Leoric caught the twitch in Ignatius's scarf and thinks quickly. To keep the turn tight, he has to compensate for the push of the wind when it changes, and he just has a feeling it will. When the call to start goes out, he bolts- and lets Lucinda take a tiny lead, just enough to buy him the space he needs to cut the turn around Bram almost absurdly close, using the wind to keep his turn controlled as he claims a tiny lead coming out of the turn. He puts everything into speed, then, almost losing that last thread of a lead at the last second- almost.

"It's amazing!" Adam says to Madeline. "I can't believe I flew so well! This broom is great!" He gives it an appreciative pat and flies around in a circle a few times. Then he settles in to watch the next race. "Go Leoric!" His trepidation about the older Hufflepuff has vanished after what Leoric said about his flying.

Lucinda suffered a bit with the wind, knowing she'd lost before it was over and probably suffering the effects mid race. Annoyed, tearse she comes in just behind Leoric but keeps going without stopping. No time to congratulate. She drifts back over to her blanket in the stands… going right for the book and making notes. Less than perfection was clearly not acceptable. And here the tunnel vision just makes her antisocial.

"GO SELWYN!" Shelley calls, throwing her support in behind Adam's housemate. "You've got this! Go go go!" Her enthusiasm isn't nearly as loud as when he friend was racing - but who can blame her?

Bran doesn't like brooms. He doesn't like fast-moving things. He doesn't like people in his personal space. And he definitely doesn't like people cutting super close turns around him, and the older Hufflepuff comes this close to dropping the precious camera with a startled exclamation. In Welsh. Something that sounds suspiciously cuss-like in nature. With a bit of an effort (and a hasty check that he didn't do anything untoward to the camera), Bran collects his dignity about him. "Well done, Selwyn!" Pause. "I don't think I got that one on film, sorry."

Leoric swings in for a stop, once more right over his starting point, sand-blonde hair tousled mightily by the wind and speed. He sees Slughorn zip off and and shouts aloud in French, a brief word of congratulation for her alone before he turns to the others. He smiles at Bran and nods. "No worries; I was a bit caught up in the race, wasn't even paying attention."

"GO SELWYN!" Madeline calls, throwing her support in behind Adam's housemate. "You've got this! Go go go!" Her enthusiasm isn't nearly as loud as when he friend was racing - but who can blame her?

"Selwyn wins!" Iggy is clapping in the air as an idle glance watches Lucinda briefly head straight for the stands. Sharing the enthusiasm of his peers the Gryffindor comments, "Nice. Hope that one made it to the camera. Well done there."

Lucinda shouts something back over her shoulder in French in response to Leoric but doesn't change her actions otherwise.

Instead of Bran Leoric answers Iggy's comment about the finish of his race making it onto film, "Afraid it didn't, though I almost take that as a compliment. You ready for the finals, Prewett? And who wants to stand as the finish line? Anyone? Surely someone wants to risk a broomstick to the sternum!"

"Yes!" Adam cries when Leoric finishes first. That makes it three for Hufflepuff and two for Gryffindor. "So it's all down to Ignatius and Leoric now! Come on, Leoric! You have to beat him!" He wants vengeance for being beaten earlier. "I'll stand on the finish line!" he calls, hurrying over. "If you hit me you lose!"

"Selwyn vs. Prewett, then? For the title, like." And then Bran can stop being around these fast-moving MANIACS! (Not that he hasn't likely gotten some great pictures out of this…) Unexpectedly, and unusually, the solemn boy laughs - just a little - at Adam's words. A couple chuckles. "Hit either of us and it's an automatic loss, isn't it?"

"Crush him, Prewett!" Madeline calls brightly. "Hufflepuff has /nothing/ on Gryffindor!" the girl declares proudly. She grins aside at Adam. Her house versus his! Winner gets bragging rights!

"Could I perhaps opt out of ACTUAL crushing?" Leoric quips, offering a hand to Prewett before the race. "Best of luck."

Iggy smirks, seated on his broom. "Or it may be an automatic win." He taunts Adam and on his way to the line. "What's the title? Heat Wave?" This really mattered to him.

"Crush him without any actual crushing, Prewett!" Madeline agrees.

"No promises!" Iggy shouts to Madeline before shaking his competitor's hand. "Same to you. Preemptive apology if I ram into you."

"No it won't!" Adam retorts, grinning at Ignatius. "Title? Oh, I dunno! Yeah, Heat Wave works, don't it?" He shakes his head and then raises his hand. "Everyone ready? All right, ready… set… … GO!" He drops his hand for the final race.

"NO. ACTUAL. CRUSHING!" Bran is so very firm in this. And then, neutrality thrown to the winds: "Up Hufflepuff! Win the…" Pause. "Uh." He shoots a look towards the other students. He's not very creative at naming things in English, so… "Heat Wave title. Aye." With the competitors getting into position, he lifts his camera one last time.

The winds cut as the racers, initially neck and neck, spear towards the finish line. On the inside, nearer Adam, Leoric has scant seconds to react as the sudden, violent gusts start to push both racers towards Adam as they near the finish line. Caught between the boy and the swerving Gryffindor, Leoric rolls upwards in a sharp, dizzying turn over Ignatius, preserving his forward momentum as Iggy's slants, leaving him crossing the finish line… an instant before "disaster."

It was tough, a battle of both mind and body for the title of "Heatwave". Iggy leaned lowly onto his broom in an effort to best Selwyn against him. Being too focused on winning, the Gryffindor fails in swerving at the last minute to compensate for the gust of wind. The control of his broom was lost and unfortunately it put him on a path heading straight towards their race starter, the first year Adam, and an unfortunate collision of students and a mad broomstick.

Lucinda slips away after she's retrieved her broom. She only offers one, quick, final glance at the merriment before hoping on her Arrow and heading all the way back to the castle. Brooding is an art, after all.

CLICK! Bran's camera goes off at JUST the right moment. Oh, that's going to be a picture for the ages. Just a loop of fail, playing over and over. A nice embarrassing classic. The Hufflepuff is so enamored with the victory of the shot that it takes him a solid few seconds to realize he'd better call out: "I knew someone was going to be bowled over by these mad pieces of scrap wood! You two alright?"

Adam watches the two final contestants race to Bran and back. "Go Leoric!" he calls, cheering when the Hufflepuff breaks ahead. But then they're coming right at him, and he throws up his arms in alarm. Perhaps he'd have been able to dive out of the way were he on his feet, but he isn't able to take control of his broom quickly enough as Ignatius crashes into him. Yelling out with fear and surprise, he tries to grab onto Ignatius as they collide, but he goes flying off his broom anyway.

Leoric comes out of his loop a confused and faintly dizzied victor, swerving around to take control of any errant brooms and bring them back to earth. "Prewett! Irving! Anything broken? Beyond pride or dignity, of course?"

See - Madeline had two feet solidly on the ground, so she dove out of the way quickly. The sight of her friend all tumbled over has her rather worried, though. "Adam! Oh, Gosh, are you okay? Prewett?" Her housemate is almost an afterthought. Gee. What was that about /Gryffindor/ pride earlier, Maddie?

Iggy goes one way and the borrowed broom takes off in another direction, as the bodies tumble towards the ground. A series of grunts and groans follow as the tumble along the grass until their momentum is drained. Prewett had landed face down on the grass along with a healthy mouthful of it. Winded, he can only respond with a groan. Which could have meant either yes or no. At least he was conscious.

Adam hits the ground with a thud and a grunt and rolls over a few times until he's left flat on his back and staring up at the sky. Though uninjured, he lays there for a moment, winded and seeing stars, and only manages to wave a hand vaguely in the air and mumble something incoherent.

"… good enough, I suppose. Anything nasty and we'd have shrieks instead of groans. Or nothing! Just as bad, that. The brooms're collected at least, gentlemen, so no worries there." Leoric swings back around after wrangling lost brooms and stops to see if either needs a hand up.

Madeline doesn't look as certain as Leoric, though. "Should I go get Madame Spleen?" she asks anxiously. "I could run and get Madame Spleen? Adam, do you need Madame Spleen? Prewett?"

Camera tucked safely away, Bran sees no reason to crowd the injured (in dignity, if nothing else) by adding himself to their immediate presence. Don't mind him, he's just hovering in the background.

Eventually Iggy is able to push himself up, a little. He spits out the particles of fresh grass. He's struggling to keep his eyes open and looks a bit dazed. "No, no." He doesn't think so. "Just me head." Finally moving onto his rear he accepts the offered assistance although it's a wavering effort to stand. "Did I win?"

"M'fine," Adam says, blinking a few times as the world comes back into focus. Pressings his fists into his eyes, he lets out a breath and pushes himself up into a half-sitting position, his outstretched arms propping him up. He looks around, dazed. "Who won?" Then he peers at Ignatius, who seems to have much the same question in mind, and he can't help but burst into a mad fit of breathless giggles.

"You hit Adam! You can't win if you hit Adam!" Madeline exclaims, but she's watching her friend more than her house mate. "Sure you're fine? And Prewett - your head's pretty important. Maybe we should all go to the infirmary just to be sure…"

"Well, aside from hitting Adam, you had a bit of an angle to things at the end there, Prewett- bit into your forward momentum a touch, sad to say." Leoric sounded a bit uncomfortable saying so himself.

"Trumpets. You all sound like trumpets." Iggy then rubs his forehead. "Right then. Heatwave Selwyn it is. Congrats mate. Though I don't think my forward what's-it-called had anything to do with it. That broom is mad." No nurse needed, the Gryffindor starts to head towards his own broom, to reclaim it and possibly lay down for a spell or two.

"No, I'm fine," Adam says, stifling his giggles. He doesn't want to bother Madame Spleen again. She's nice, but he doesn't want to be a nuisance. To prove he's okay, he pushes himself up and jumps to his feet. But he moves too quickly and the blood rushes to his head. He sways for a moment, his eyes squeezed shut. "I'm fine! Just dizzy. Well done, Ignatius. I mean Leoric. Well done."

As Adam sways, Madeline steps towards her friend, taking his arm at the elbow to try to steady him, while her gaze follows Prewett worriedly. "Well… if you're both sure…" Though she clearly isn't. "Maybe we can get you a tea or something in the Great Hall, at least," she suggests.

"Perhaps we'll have a rematch someday on more sane brooms, eh?" Leoric calls to Ignatius as he wanders off. Adam, he watches sway with a grin. "Seems he's likely just dizzy. No worries, there, Evans. I'll keep an eye on him and get him to Spleen if he needs it."

Adam feels like sitting back down, but he keeps his feet thanks to his friend taking his arm. He opens his eyes, blinks, and waves a hand in Ignatius's direction. "Bye," he says. "Nice flying." Then he glances round at Leoric and Madeline. "No, I want to go to the common room," he says. "I need to lie down."

Madline nods, still watching her friend for any sign that he is /not/ okay. "I'll walk you to the door," she offers. Or should she let Selwyn do that - and go after Prewett? Oh dear.

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