(1939-01-29) Murder, Murder in the Night Air
Details for Murder, Murder in the Night Air
Summary: Shelley returns to the Auror's Office in a confused state of mind, looking for help.
Date: 1939-01-029
Location: Auror's Office and Willis Manor
Related: No Place is Sacred Forced Out of Retirement

Katherine is /not/ at her desk. Yes, Kat's desk is full of paperwork, stacked high as usual for the slow reading Auror but instead of working on it she is sitting behind Auror Cooper's desk. And carefully rearranging all the files in her drawers so that they are in the ost convoluted, confusing order possible…

"Well yes it's important." The voice of the young auror Graham breaks the silence as he enters talking back to someone who's hidden from view "Least try to get those files to me by the end of the day, please." he says rolling his eyes as he enters further in it's likely he is looking over something so may walk by before back tracking "Um Kat, I hate to tell you this. They seemed to have changed your name to Cooper." giving a smirk after his words.

Next comes the desk top itself. Before she starts to work on it she raises a finger to her lips as Graham notices what she's doing, "Shhhh… I don't know where Cooper went but this should be fun to watch when she gets back." Everything on the desk top gets flip around. Whatever was on the left side of the desk is now on the right side of the desk and viceversa but everything as close as possible to its identical mirror position as Kat can make it. ONce that's done she scurries back to her own desk, giggling to herself as she imagines her fellow Auror's reactions when she sees her desk.

From out of the Ogden's office on the far side of the office, a bespeckled Cooper steps out next to stand in the door frame, back facing the everyone else. "It's taking us some time to do our preliminary research, but Edwarlinda and I will be questioning the suspect soon. He's still in no condition the talk according to the healers." There's quite a bit of banter going back and forth between the young woman and the big boss. And for the time being she remains blissfully ignorant of exactly what is happening to her workspace.

Katherine is now back at her desk, half hidding behind a stack of papers pretending that she's working. While Cooper still has her back to the main room she holds her finger up to her lips again at Graham then winks at him before going back to scribbling nonesense on a blank form.

Graham winces slightly though he will not say much else moving slightly away "Hm ah yes." the young man will move on wards himself. He doesn't quite reach the office however as he hears a familiar voice and cannot seem but to turn around and wait to see what happens.

A firm nod is given to Ogden and then another before Cooper replies, "Right. We'll try a have write up for you in the coming weeks. Thank you, sir." She turns around back to the rest of the room and shuts the office door behind her. After a few steps forward, she sighs taking off her glasses to clean them on the hem of her lumpy sweater as she follows the path back to her desk. "I have no clue when he's going to get off my bum and promote me," she sighs to both Graham at Kat who are proximate enough to her desk to ear her complain.

And that's when it happens. Her vision somewhat impaired with her specks off, she goes to reach for a pencil from a cup, but instead knocks over a piping hot cup of tea that's supposed to be on the right side of her desk. "CHRIST!" she exclaims.

"You're a good worker, Cooper. He'll come around soon enough. And hopefully I'll make full Auror soon too. I know your pain." As Cooper knocks the tea off her desk Kat manages to hold back a laugh and instead pretends its nothing but an accident, "Oh dear! Are you alright, Cooper? Here, let me help." Pulling out her wand she casts a cleansing charm, suctioning up all the spilt tea.

You invite Rena to meet you for RP.

It's full dark out now - though it hasn't been for long. Cooper is at her desk - having just spilled her tea, the result of a desk-rearranging prank by Katherine. Kat is helping suction up the spilt tea with a spell, while Graham is watching the mischief.

It's during this, that Shelley limps into the office dressed in her broom-racing gear, though her goggles have gone astray. One arm is clutched across her middle, and she walks stiffly. Her hair is mussed, and she has scratches and tears in her clothes.

But perhaps most telling of all - for those who know what to look for - she looks not just alarmed, but lost and bewildered. "I- Alis's hurt," she exclaims - a statement that would no doubt earn her confused and uncomfortable looks.

No. That wasn't right. Alis is- "We were attacked. She-" She's dead. Isn't she dead? She was hurt. She could still be alive! "The building's on fire. The Muggle fire-brigade's there. They- some of them may have seen me apparate."

The young auror winces at the knocked over glass. He does look to the two witches "You both deserve it in my book." Graham will say about promotions he looks like he's about to move towards his office when he turns back at another approach his eyes widen though. "Shelley!" he'll call out forgetting to use the Prewett public name but he's already making his way over towards her. He does hear the questions asked and concern deepens on his face though she does seem a little more aware. "Dont worry about the muggles spotting you, are you okay?" he will ask he seems to say something lower trying to do so before the others rush over. "Do you have your potion with you?" are the words spoken in whisper.

Cooper both groans at the mess before her and sighs at her colleague's kindness enough to clean up the tea. "Thanks Kat, today's just not my day," the blonde auror runs a hand through her hair and puts her glasses down on a dry section of her desk. Upon retracting her hand, she knocks over and inkwell, now dumping black ink all over her desk. "Shite!" she gasps and groans again, quickly picking up the most important papers out of the way, "I swear to God I didn't put that there … has someone been messing with my desk?" But upon hearing Shelley's entrance, her attention is divided further as she asks, "What's going on?"

Rena, for her part, in the midst of all this inner-office levity has frankly taken no part. She's been quietly brooding in a very uncharacteristic fashion by herself at her desk. Occasionally, she's even seemed to look slightly annoyed by the noise of the others, holding her head in her hand as she stares down at a report on her desk. However, the young woman's train of thought is interrupted dramatically when Shelley limps in. That draws her attention away, at last.

"What the bloody 'ell…" The words slip out before Rena can stop them. Obviously dismayed by Shelley's disheveled appearance, she also rises to her feet and heads toward the woman.

Katherine keeps her spell going so that the ink gets sucked up right behind the tea. And her composure is starting to break, a giggle sneaking out just to be cut short when Shelley comes in. Once the remnants of the ink spill are all gone she walks over to Shelley, concern clear on her features. She does remain silent, letting Graham get the fact out of their fellow Auror since he knows her and the effects of her curse better than most…

"I, uhh…" Shelley starts as Graham approaches, taking a smell step to the side. "I was thrown out the window," she second story window, "I'm fine. It's Alis. She's still inside. They-" She can still see it in her mind - her friend spread on the stairs, her chest caved in, her body still…

But that wasn't quite right, was it?

"The building's on fire," she repeats urgently. "And the girl's dead. I tried to save her…"

At the mention of a potion, her hand frees from around her middle, to touch her left chest. There's a pocket there, and a vial is pulled out. She looks a little surprised to see it in her hand. The vial looks half empty, already. "Um. This?" she asks Graham.

She shifts away from the other aurors as more of them approach, looking at each one in turn. "We should- we have to go help her," she asserts uncertainly.

Cooper pays no mind to her disarranged desk, nor does she notice the rest of the ink sucked up. "Whoa whoa, Shelley slow down," she puts her glasses back on, a big splotch of ink stains the right lens and she quickly pulls a metal star container from her drawer. "Where'd you come from? What building is on fire and who else is still inside?" she quickly joins the group and wets her fingers with Star Grass Salve, ready to apply it on Prewett.

The auror doesnt want to make a scene on the curse front at least it's his goal not to. Graham seemes shocked though as something clearly happend given her state even if the events might be a bit jumbled in her head. He spots the vial but it's not full he is left with a choice try and have her take the potion and not know how long it will last or cast the spell which would be more uh noticeable. "We will dispatch people there." it seems Cooper asks his question so he moves to the next. "Yes thats the one, I think you should drink it, will help calm your nerves a bit."

Katherine grabs a seat from a vacant desk and pulls it over to Shelley, "Here Prewett. Have a seat, drink the potion, and tell us what happened. We will definitely go help but we need to know where to go." She makes sure to hold the chair until Shelley is safely sitting in it and being attended by others. One thing is for sure, she won't be trying to put any salve on the redheaded Auror. Not the way she normally reacts to being touched.

Rena's features remain darkly troubled as Shelley speaks. If anything, they become more clouded with a look of anxious uncertainty. Backing away slowly by a step or two, she remains silent as the others tend to the older Auror, listening intently to every word. Trying to put the pieces together, she holds back until there is a lull in the peppering of questions and finally asks quietly: "Did you see what or who threw you from the window? Was it a woman, dressed rather darkish and sinister-like?"

Well. It was /her/ potion, on her person, and Graham was another auror… Shelley studies him for a moment, then nods and drinks the potion. The vial is slipped away again, as she moves away from Cooper's touch with the salve. "I'll…" put it on, the woman implies, holding her hand out to Cooper for the salve. She looks at the chair Kat offers, but she doesn't sit. There isn't time for /sitting/!

"Not the woman, the man," she answers Rena. But where was it? That was the thing. Where was the house? "I was near Cheddar," she says after a brief pause. "I was flying my broom." Where was Alis? She was there, wasn't she?

"I came out of the woods, into a clearing there. Was a house. I saw a flash of green, in the window. There was a witch, threatening a girl. She said a name. She said- I knew the name." Why did she know the name? What was it? "W- Wills…?" she hazards uncertainly. "I went up the stairs. There was-" A body? Alis? "Alis was on the stairs, her chest-" But how did she get there? How was she there?

"We have to /go/," she urges them desperately.

Cooper can barely get close to Shelley before the woman stops her, and the blonde auror holds her salvey hands up as if to say 'Okay, I won't touch you.' And instead she hands her star-shaped tin of salve to Shelley for self application. "I'm going to go gather the others," she says, seeing as Graham and Rena seem to know more of the situation than she. And with ink blotched glasses, she makes a beeline for some of the other offices and cubicles.

Graham is not thrilled with how little potion is in the vial but perhaps it's enough and the wand can remain stowed for now. The auror is glad she drinks it and is still listening to her words the talk of Alis is a hard topic of course hoping the potion will kick in. "It wasnt Alis, Shelley." he says in soft words though to her insistence at going back "You should be seen by a healer at least let me try first." he doesn't like the story unfolding and sounds like certainly worse happened then what's being told, though he's also lookng over Shelley to see what injuries she might have. He will give in and swipe out his wand from his sleeve "Hold still." he will say pointing to where it looks like a bump to the head first. "Episkey." he says firmly he'll repeat the process more times pointing to a new injury location with each. She'd feel a hot sensation followed by a cooling one as pain eased if he's doing well. "Perhaps I can side-a-long you back to the place." he offers.

Injuries and the necessities of the job in general are being sorted by more learned heads than Rena's, leaving her to try and sort out the facts. Cooper is off to deal with the devil in the details, and Graham has the wounds well in hand. "Cheddar - if there's an 'ouse burning anywhere in the area, it's not likely to be 'ard to locate if we just go there." She offers anxiously - if a bit unhelpfully. However, Shelley's remarks about Alis have her more worried.

Moving closer and trying to get into Shelley's line of sight, the younger redhead looks her in the eye quite soberly: "Shelley, I promise Alis wasn't there."

Everything seems to be well in hand and badgering Selley with more comments and question won't help anyone so Kat just takes a step back and waits for the details to come out and the action to start, which is much more her cup of tea anyway.

Shelley looks between Graham and Rena, confusion on her features - though somewhere in their mind she knows they're right. "No," she answers them. "I saw her. On the stairs." She lets her eyes close as the back of her head goes hot, then cold. Her head lowers, and one hand reaches up to cover her face. "She…" And then there's a flash of an image - crumbled bricks, a fallen building, an alley - and Alis in the rubble. "She…" She's dead. She /died/.

She sinks into the chair now, some of the urgency in her form draining away. "It was a man," she corrects herself. "Sorry, I just- He was dead. I don't know why I thought…" His chest was crushed, just like hers had been. What if…?

Graham finishes up his healing well the best that he can at least. He'll look back to the other aurors a moment though figuring they are listening. "Sorry I cant do more, i'd probably still be seen at St Mungo's." he says though after this he will watch frowning slightly as she slumps into the chair he raises a hand but lowers it as there will be other better times "I think we can find it yes. So a man and a body."

"When you said Willis earlier," the youngest of the Aurors gathered asks with a good deal of caution in her voice. "Did you mean Abrams Willis?" She really almost hopes that she's wrong. "Th-The man who was murdered in St. Mungo's a few days ago… while I was there?" Rena asks, somewhat urgently now, herself. It's better to know for damn sure if they're on the same page now before kicking off to Cheddar in hopes of locating a burning building - and bodies, to boot.

"I don't need the hospital," Shelley protests quietly. Her hand was still covering her eyes - but she drags it down across her face now, and looks up at the pair of aurors in front of her. "Two bodies. The man on the stairs with- with his chest caved in, and the girl. I got her out safely, but-" She was dead anyways. "Umm. I went up the stairs past the man. I stunned the girl, just- well," because she was losing it, "to get her safely out of the way." Guilt crosses her features. "I left her helpless. The witch had gone in through a bookcase, into a hidden room. She came out with a…" she gestures with her hands. "A case. I stunned her, but then there was fire. So I got the girl out through the window, lowered her down. That's when a man appeared and… he stunned me, right out through the window. I woke up with the Muggles arriving, and the girl was /dead./ They killed her."

Shelley watches Rena for a moment, her brow knitting in thought. Abrams Willis? Abrams? A murder at St. Mungos? It sounds familiar, but it's still hard making connections. "Umm… the witch said Willis. I don't remember if she said a first name… But Willis. Yeah. That sounds right."

It's with a bit of reluctance he turns back and forth to listen to the words spoken between the two. Graham had seen the news report but it's hard to say if he'd read much further into it beyond that until now. "So senseless." he will say at the loss of life he is hearing his face falls but he looks from Rena back to Shelley "You did the best you could, doesn't sound like you could have done more." the names being given out he ponders if he should look more into them.

Again, deeply troubled, Rena casts about rather helplessly in her own mind, trying to piece together the puzzle and work out what must be done. Shelley's description of the harrowing incident she just came from now causes the young woman more dismay than ever. She seems to be staggered by a realization. The box… She knows what must have been IN the box, in theory. "We've got to stop them. We've got to get there right away!" She cries abruptly, now looking quite frantic.

"The girl's dead," Shelley repeats. By her estimation, that seems to indicate there was more she could have done. She rises, nodding to the other two. "I want to go back. Maybe there's-"

She grits her teeth before adding, "That man. The way his chest was- Maybe it's just a coincidence. Or maybe they had something to do with Alis."

Graham looks back and forth and it seems the minds are made up to go back to the scene of the crime. "I'm sure the oblviaotors have done their work." he will ponder a moment though he looks back as Shelley speaks and isnt completely sure she's herself at least not in full but he's spoken his peace on that front "Okay, lets three of us go. Side-a-long together." he will look back to Rena a moment "If this does have something to do with the other event it must be treated as linked so you might want to grab something for evidence and the like." he can at least instruct a little.

Rena nods somberly at Graham's remark. Her shoulders are considerably slumped and her demeanor is that of impending defeat. After what she went through the other day, she isn't looking forward to whatever might be there to find. She absolutely dreads the possibility of more bodies - but moreover, she dreads the possibility of discovering that the black witch got what she was after… even if she doesn't know what it was.

Returning to the others with the requested item for collecting evidence in, she ensures that her hat is firmly in place before giving a nod to the others, setting her resolve to face her fears.

Shelley is running things over in her head- repeatedly. What she did, the choices she had rejected, what she could have done /instead/ - should she have come for help? Would the girl still be alive? If she'd grabbed her and apparated away…

The trio travel together to leave the Ministry - so they can apparate to the clearing in the woods, where the fire was still leaping merrily. It's only as they arrive that Obliviators and the like start appearing as well - to deal with the Muggle firefighters, and to put out the fire themselves. "The girl's over there," Shelley remarks grimly, nodding her head towards the form of the teenager in her white dressing gown.

The auror comes back into being with a *crack* with the others. Graham will watch each in turn as it looks like the fire fighters are still getting a hold of the fire. He watches where Shelley points now though he only turns to look that direction he doesnt seem to turning to make his way over unless the others make their way over simply watching observing or perhaps his look of calm and non concern is an act which is very likely.

A glance is spared to Shelley and Graham alike. Neither seems terribly keen on moving. Rena doesn't wish to go and confront the body either, but this has to be done.

Drawing a slow, steadying breath to calm herself, the young woman puts distance between herself and the others rather quickly, moving toward the teenage girl. Upon reaching her, she lets her pained dark eyes pass over her figure as she then crouches beside to examine her carefully.

Shelley's gaze goes to the front door of them before she follows Rena - her feet crunching through snow, her expression a carefully controlled mask. As if that by itself will help her keep herself together. The girl's eyes are closed as she lies in the snow, just beside the burning house. "I lowered her out the window," she explains quietly. Not too far from the girl - just a bit beyond her - it's still possible to descern where Shelley had landed. "They killed her - but left me alive."

Graham will follow the others easily he will move not to be in the way, but he does look at the house exit and the spot where Shelley landed. He does look down the girl as well the frown returning to his face though he will just look over things from here. He is investigating but not wishing to intrude as well. "Did they give any indication that they might know you were an auror."

A glance is spared to Shelley and Graham alike. Neither seems terribly keen on moving. Rena doesn't wish to go and confront the body either, but this has to be done.

Drawing a slow, steadying breath to calm herself, the young woman puts distance between herself and the others rather quickly, moving toward the teenage girl. Upon reaching her, she lets her pained dark eyes pass over her figure as she then crouches beside to examine her carefully.

Shelley's gaze goes to the front door of them before she follows Rena - her feet crunching through snow, her expression a carefully controlled mask. As if that by itself will help her keep herself together. The girl's eyes are closed as she lies in the snow, just beside the burning house. "I lowered her out the window," she explains quietly. Not too far from the girl - just a bit beyond her - it's still possible to descern where Shelley had landed. "They killed her - but left me alive."

Graham will follow the others easily he will move not to be in the way, but he does look at the house exit and the spot where Shelley landed. He does look down the girl as well the frown returning to his face though he will just look over things from here. He is investigating but not wishing to intrude as well. "Did they give any indication that they might know you were an auror."

As Rena crouches beside the body, her eyes begin to tear. Whether this is from the smoke still rising from the rubble of the burned house or from emotion is difficult to say. The acrid fumes are difficult to bear in any case, and the young woman reaches into her pocket to withdraw a handkerchief. Holding it over her mouth and nose, she looks over the girl unhappily, searching for signs of injury. Finding none, she rises to her feet and gives both Shelley and Graham a brief, but very grim look of knowing.

Turning her head toward the blackened, charred mess of collapsed timbers jutting out at odd angles, Rena's gaze seems to catch something in the midst of the wreckage not far away. Proceeding with great caution, she begins to make her way forward, one very careful step at a time. Heat still rises from the burned wood, causing the air to shimmer in the cold winter breeze.

Rena moves off, and Shelley crouches in turn. She brushes hair from the girl's face - even smoothes part of her dressing gown, before removing her coat to cover the child. She should be at Hogwarts - not here, dead, like this. She failed the girl. She presses her lips together grimly as she rises in silence, turning to watch Rena pick her way through the smoldering home.

Graham will linger back looking though it's hard to say if he cant help himself investigating or he's just trying to unobtrusively keep an eye out on both of the others. His focus moves to Rena as she approaches the building and back to Shelley who takes care of the child he frowns slightly before taking few steps to remain close enough to be of some help or speak if need be.

A breath of wind causes the blackened wood of a window frame to tilt and fall, spitting a plume of cinders up into the air. Instinctively, Rena shields her face with her arm, half-turning away until the danger is passed.

Finally reaching the area that might have been a study - at least, judging by all of the hap-hazard remains of books lying scattered around - she casts her eyes about the ash-covered ground for what she saw moments earlier. It takes some time, but finally, nudging a little with the toe of her shoe, she spots a slightly flame tarnished, but still partially gleaming ring. Stooping, she picks it up gingerly, unsure of the heat. It is very warm, but her gloves protect her enough if she passes it between one and the other while carefully returning to where Shelley and Graham stand by the body.

Upon reaching them, she holds up her find with a somber look in her eyes. Brushing the black with her thumb, she murmurs, squinting at the ring: "It's got writing, it 'as. Says…" she pauses, narrowing her gaze even more: "To my dearest Narelle, 1936-09-01"

The look Shelley gives Graham as she rises is closed and guarded - and simply /dares/ him to say something. Just try it.

Her attention turns to Rena next, watching her pick her way through the ruins, and retrieve the ring. "Narelle…?" Shelley remarks in an uncertain voice. They needed to find out who lived here. Why might they have been targetted?

The auror follows Rena a moment and tenses when the item falls but all seems okay for the moment. Graham will look back to the closer Shelley a moment and catches the look given he will remain quiet but of course the concern in his eyes is more then enough to say what he's thinking without speaking. He turns back to Rena as she reads the words off "Hm well it'd be easy if they are a witch or wizard to pull the records."

"I'm afraid the name means nothing to me," Rena remarks unhappily to the others. With some reluctance, she slips the ring into the bag brought along for evidence gathering. "I've a feeling the newspaper will tell us just who lives here in a few hours. They're always right on top of things… no matter 'ow morbid." Her voice remains respectfully low as her eyes drop to the dead girl beside them once more. "Abram was one thing - this is another, entirely."

Something teetering on the brink between anger and tears seems to be coursing through Rena now, and her hands are balled tightly into fists. "This thing ain't going to be passed over. Them that are responsible are going to suffer." She says tightly.

Shelley reaches out to touch Rena lightly on the shoulder. She nods once, then drops her hand. Welcome to the Auror's Office. Isn't it fun?

"An eternity with the dementor's. It's the least they deserve," she agrees, before walking away from the pair. She starts circling around the house - a brief moment of relief when she finds her broom right where she can vaguely recall leaving it, by the front door.

Turning towards the ruins, pulls out her wand giving a brief incantation. "Impervius Flammas." That said, she starts wading into the ruins herself, pausing at the burned human remains where the stairs had collapsed. A /man/. Just a stranger, she told herself firmly. That was the truth of it.

"You are likely correct, but pulling the file often finds things that the newspapers not privy to." Graham says looking to Rena and giving a small shrug her way he agrees that this is really unforgivable. "The dementors will have them yes." he looks back to Shelley as she walks away though it's lucky he does as it seems in her distraught state her spell goes awry and his wand is in hand in a second a small movement "Impervius Flammas" he flicks it towards her.

Soberly, Rena nods to Graham and seems to sink rather deeply into thought. The hand laid briefly on her shoulder is not ignored, but somehow, she can't even manage the faintest hint of a wry smile. The last several days have been hellish. And there doesn't appear to be any abatement to the suffering that this person or persons is willing to inflict to get what they want.

"Some'ow, the woman I encountered in St. Mungos knew my name." She muses, stepping slightly to follow Shelley - perhaps instinct that the trio should stick closer together. Thankfully Graham is also being Johnny-on-the-spot where charms are concerned. "Also, from Abram, she wanted to know where something was 'idden. I suppose the fact is, if the same folks are be'ind this - whatever /it/ is must've been tucked away in this 'ouse. I've a terrible feeling about this."

Shelley glances at Rena, but simply nods in agreement. If she notices Graham casting the spell, she doesn't remark on it. Her attention stays fixed on the remains for a time; she can see him properly in her memory, now, lying on the stairs… instead of Alis. Though the image of Alis isn't far from her mind, either. "And there's the possibility that someone involved in this, may have been involved with Alis' death, as well," she remarks, keeping her voice carefully level. "Or the manner of this man's death may well have been a coincidence." She continues to explore, ending up in the ruins of the room she had glanced into - the room where she had seen the flash of green while on her broom. The room where she had first seen the witch threatening the girl. She shifts a fallen piece of wood - and then freezes, surprise and just a hint of horror on her face. "There's another body." Someone else had been inside? Had they been alive when they fire started? Did she leave someone inside the house, to burn?

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