(1939-02-11) Bicycles and Brooms
Details for Bicycles and Brooms
Summary: Angelus makes friends with Nell and asks her for help while Madeline arrives and stays quiet, Ulysses tries to sneak up on her, and Douglas enters coolly.
Date: February 11, 1939
Location: Gryffindor Common Room, Hogwarts

On Tuesday evening as Angelus steps into the commons from the corridor, he is pondering about things. A hum escapes him as he thinks, eyes distanced even as he scans the room. He heads automatically over to an armchair and sinks into the seat, letting out a heavy, relaxed sigh as he slumps comfortably back.

Nell is presently curled up on a comfy armchair, her legs tucked underneath her and a book cradled in her lap. The new arrival steals her attention, gaze lifting from whatever she's reading to settle upon Angelus. "Hi, Eibon," she greets with a cheery little wave.

Angelus lets out a soft ‘huh’ as he lifts his head. With a bit of a tilt to his head, the youth glances over to Nell and offers her an amiable smile. “Oh, hi, sweetheart,” he responds with enthusiasm, his royal blue eyes twinkling. He lets out a hum as he regards the girl, and tilts his chin in gesture as he asks, “What’re you reading?” Another hum escapes him, tilting his head a little. “Nell, isn’t it?”

"Yup, Nell," the first year confirms as she holds the textbook aloft in the air for Angelus to see. "Care of Magical Creatures. I borrowed it from a third year. It's just really amazing! I mean, animals are neat to learn about in their own right, but /magical/ creatures. It's just…" She pauses, realizing her Muggle-born heritage is glaringly obvious with the way she's chattering on. She pauses, clearing her throat and shrugging as she settles the book back in her lap. "Well, anyway. It's really interesting." Even if she /should/ be devoting her time to studying charms and the other core classes instead. She shrugs and then offers an easy grin to the boy. "What're you up to today?"

Angelus bobs his head once or twice in acknowledgement. A smile flutters against his lips and he lets out a chuckle. “Sounds like you’ve already decided on your electives - or at least one of them.” He lets out a hum, regarding her thoughtfully before he smiles. “If you want any other books on the subject you should let me know,” he offers genuinely. “We’ve got loads of magical creature books in our library; I could always write home and ask for one to be sent here.” Gel hums out as he shifts in his chair, sliding more to the edge and resting an arm over the armrest. “So,” he trails off as he remembers. “Nickname? I believe I remember the Sorting ceremony announcing an Eleanor Crane. Pretty name, I might add,” he tacks on with a casual shrug of his shoulders. “Muggle-born?”

Nell's eyes light up at his offer, the book nearly tumbling from her lap as she abruptly leans forward. "Really? You wouldn't mind? I mean, I'll take really good care of them and return them as soon as I'm done reading, I promise. I can't wait until I get to choose my electives. Care of Magical Creatures is definitely going to be one of them. Which ones do you take?" Her nose wrinkles at the mention of her full name, a slow nod given in answer. "Eleanor. Bleh. And thanks, it's really nice of you to say so! But I think it's stuffy and ick. No one's allowed to call me Eleanor," she remarks sternly. "Except my dad does sometimes, and that's usually when I know I'm in trouble. Mostly I just prefer Nell. Yes, Muggle-born." She frowns faintly at the last admission, studying Angelus to catch his reaction.

Angelus lets out a soft ‘psh’ sound as he shrugs his shoulders easily. “Of course I wouldn’t mind. I’ll see about getting them sent,” he decides with an animated bob of his head. A chuckle escapes him at her enthusiasm, and he ends up standing up from his seat. He stops in front of her seat, tilting his head as he watches her, and lets out a short, amused laugh before he shakes his head. “Oh, I got you,” he says, bringing a finger to press to his lips. “Nell,” he corrects himself, giving her a little wink. “While we’re on that topic, people call me Gel,” the boy offers as he flashes a smile. He carries on as he nods. “I’ve Care of Magical Creatures, mainly because my mother works with creatures so it’s easy to find information.” He grins widely and continues, “But I’ve Ancient Runes and Divination, too. I’ve got to keep my mind active,” he says with a chuckle, tapping a finger against his head. He steps up closer to her seat, turning to sit on the armrest, and as he leans a little - using a hand on the back of the couch to keep from falling - the pendant around his neck swings, simply forgotten. “Muggle-born,” he repeats, bobbing his head as he lets out a hum. “So I suspect you know all about some of those fascinating things that Muggles have.”

"Gel," the girl repeats, flashing a bright grin. "That'll be easy to remember. Nell and Gel, we rhyme!" She listens curiously, the book closed and placed on the floor by her feet as she turns full attention to the conversation. "Oohh. Those all sound interesting. I bet you keep really busy with your studies. Do you know what you want to do after you graduate?" The swinging arc of the pendant draws her focus, blue eyes narrowing as she tries to get a better look. A hand reaches out as if to touch it before she thinks better of calling attention to the symbol, her hand swiftly falling to her lap instead. "Oh, yeah. All kinds of stuff. It's funny how little we think about all the things we have, until suddenly you're around people who never need to use them."

Angelus tilts his head back as he chuckles. “They do!” he exclaims as he bobs his head. “Well, that just settles it.” He reaches to her with his free hand, holding his palm up for her hand. “We definitely have to be friends.” He flashes a bright smile as his blue eyes sparkle with his eagerness. “Oh, there is so much I want to do when I graduate. Quidditch Star for one.” A grin spreads across his face. “I’ll own my own store, selling potions and ingredients, while I’ll probably work for the Ministry.” A laugh escapes him. “I’m just getting well suited for how busy I’m going to be when I finish school. Nothing /I/ can’t handle though,” he adds with a wink, grinning.

Nell is settled on an overstuffed armchair chattering at Angelus, who is seated on the armrest. As he extends his arm toward her, she beams and reaches out toward his. "Friends, yes! You can never have too many friends, right?" She oohs softly, nodding as she listens. "Wow. A Quidditch star and business owner and Ministry employee. You're gonna be sooo busy. Might as well get the practice in now."

This, of course, is the perfect moment for Madeline to enter, coming down the stairs with her blanket and text book. Her usual smile clouds over, but she makes no comment, moving past the pair to go fix herself a cup of tea, and make all manner of faces while her back is to everyone, so they can't see. Ugh! /Friends/! Yeah right.

Angelus’ fingers curl around her hand when she places it in his, lifting it as he leans a little, bowing his head to kiss the back of her hand. His blue eyes flick up to her and his smile flits across his lips. “For sure,” he agrees with a bob of his head. “Can never have too many friends.” When he releases her hand, Gel lets his other arm buckle against the back of the sofa so that he simply leans his shoulder against it. “Busy, yes, but I like keeping busy. Mhm.” Angelus’ eyes trail after Madeline as she enters, quirking a brow as he regards her and simply letting out a ‘huh’ as he shrugs his shoulders, shifting his eyes back onto Nell. “So maybe you can help me with something, Nell.”

"Hi, Maddie," Nell greets enthusiastically, shifting in her chair to watch her friend step past. But then suddenly Angelus is pressing a kiss to the back of her hand in a gallant sort of gesture. The first year's head swivels back around as she regards him with a grin. "Yeah. The way I see it, it's better to keep busy and be a little /too/ involved with stuff than to be bored." Quieting, she tilts her head toward him in a questioning manner. "Me? What sort of help?"

It's only when Nell greets her that she guiltily realizes she's /completely/ forgot her manners in her annoyance. She turns quickly to smile at her friend. "Hi, Nell!" she echoes. But that's the best she's got. She quickly turns back to making her tea, biting her lower lip.

He was usually so good at these things, Ulysses. Give him a chance to sneak up on his sister on any given day, and he can always get the good scare in. He was actually doing rather well… watching her get tea, doing her best to annoy the other two… so it was a perfect opportunity, too perfect.

Sneak, sneak, sneak, the older boy had come all the way from the boy's dorm stairwell unheard, unseen. Sneak, sneak, sneak, hiding immediately as she turns to greet Nell. It's nearly perfect… until he gets right up behind her, and a certain Blue Point Siamese sees his master, and beelines to him, right in front of Maddie, and up his pant-leg, causing him to cry out in sudden shock.
Angelus bobs his head as he grins widely. “Definitely better to be busy than bored,” he agrees. His eyes drift over towards Madeline, but his grin widens when he grabs Nell’s attention again, a spark flashing in his eyes. “Well,” he starts off, shifting slightly. He props his elbow against the back of the armchair as he holds his head with his hand. “I have this dear friend who’s a Muggle,” he says, lowering his voice so that it’s a little more hushed. A sigh escapes him and losing his smile, he says in more of a serious tone, “Shh.” He presses a finger to his lips. “Don’t say anything about that. I would hate to cause her trouble if people knew. Anyway-“ He continues after a releasing a soft breath. “Her birthday is coming up but I… well, I can’t get or anything in /our/ world, clearly. What kind of thing can I get her that’s big? Is there anything that you can ride? Like our brooms?” A hum escapes him as he tilts his head.

Nell's smile fades just a touch as she notes Maddie's relative silence. Her brow furrows as she eyes her friend for a moment, concern evident. Ulysses' sneaky arrival, and the cat's untimely appearance, causes her smile to return. Glancing back to Angelus, she leans as he lowers his voice. "So she's a Muggle. Not even magically inclined, but just plain Muggle?" she asks to clarify. "Of course I can help! Let me think, hmm. Oh! Well, they might not sound as fun as brooms, but we have bicycles. Those are really rather fun."

Maddie turns as the cat runs by, and looks up at Ulysses at the sound of his cry. She can't help but giggle, and then leans into him, glad to have him there. Nell and Angelus being all nicey-nice with each other bothers her more than she cares to admit.

The humanity! The indignity! First, to become a climbing post for a sneezy cat, and then to be leaned on by a ruddy first year while trying to remove the latter… this does not spell good news for Ulysses. So, blinking a bit at Madeline, he works to get Mr. Sniffles off of his current clinging point on his back, "Um. Hi." He pauses. "Boo?" Then a look of confusion over at Angelus and Nell. Nothing weird there. A curious glance at Madeline again.

As the door swings closed behind him and a draught sets the majority of the common room downwind of Douglas, it's fairly clear by the smell of tobacco just where he's been and what he's been doing. That much is hardly unusual, either for Douglas or for an ever increasing number of sixth formers, reliably informed that smoking is good for the nerves and the constitution. And what seventh years aren't getting nervous, with exams coming up? He tosses down a tatty book of potions on one of the small tables, then tucks himself into an armchair near the fire to hold court. Or, more accurately this week, to be tentatively approached by budding Romeos, ready to accept any words of wisdom which drip from his lips.

Angelus nods, a soft sigh brushing past his lips in all seriousness. He lets out a hum as he considers, his eyes trailing away from Nell to Madeline, in which he catches sight of Ulysses. A hand lifts to offer flick of a wave, a dip of his head, but he’s then looking back to Nell with another soft hum. He leans more on the armchair, closer to Nell, so that he can speak in more whispered tones. “But it’s important you tell no one. Not even her,” he says, indicating Madeline with a jab of his thumb over his shoulder as he frowns. “If anyone knew…” He trails off and for a moment, adapts a concerned look as he ponders. “You’ve seen how things are unfortunately.” As he listens to her, nodding his head to show that he is, his arm weakens a little from holding himself up in his position. “Mhm.” He nods, pushing against the chair so that he can shift back into a more upright position. “Bicycle,” he repeats. “What’s it do? You can sit on it and it’ll mov-“ He cuts off as his hand slips, causing him to slid off the armchair and practically into her before he manages to catch himself, letting out an ‘ack!’ “Sorry,” he says on an amused laugh.

Nell appears somewhat distracted as she peers at Maddie. It's clear she has noticed /something/ is bothering her friend, although she's not entirely sure just what that might be. A hand lifts to wave to Ulysses, then to Douglas as he enters. Eyes narrowed in thought, she turns back to Angelus in an attempt to hear his quiet words. "Knew that you were associating with… yeah, I know. That could be bad, right? I'm pretty good at keeping secrets. She'd probably like a bicycle. It's on two wheels, so when you pedal, it goes forward and-" Her words cut off abruptly as Angelus nearly lands on top of her, the first year giving a squeak of surprise. "Oops."

"Boo," Madeline echoes. "Hi, Ulysses." She stays up against him for a moment, then straightens up, adding, "I can make you some tea, too." She takes a second cup, and gives Ulysses a questioning look.

The sound of Angelus' tumble catches her attention, and she glances towards him and Nell, but her attention doesn't linger there for long. Long enough for her smile to turn into another frown, though.

Douglas's attention is drawn to Angelus as he tries the old 'whoops my elbow slipped and look I'm in your lap' trick. Sure, he doesn't pull it off exactly as Douglas would have planned it and recommended, but points for effort for the third year. "You know," he offers Angelus the wisdom of his seventeen year old worldly advice, "I'd stick with the yawn-and-arm-around-her trick for now. That one needs practice."

Caught, Ulysses ruffles Madeline's hair a bit as he acknowledges each wave as it comes to him, a grin striking his features as he sees so many people acknowledge him at once. Douglas especially gets a bit of an upraised brow, before he looks back at Madeline. However, he doesn't immediately answer directly, because instead he's lightly, playfully, kicking her shin. "You wanna tell me what this grousing is about first? You'll murder the tea if you don't."

Angelus is laughing enthusiastically as he shifts carefully, trying not to squish the poor girl as he pushes both hands against the chair to keep him from falling any further. But before he finishes lifting himself up he leans his head closer to her and kisses her cheek casually in appreciation. “Thank you, Nell,” he says as he pushes up so that he’s now standing in front of the armchair. He offers the girl a smile, but before he can say anything more he’s swinging a glance over towards Douglas and smirking. “Trick,” he echoes and lets out a snicker. “If it was a trick it would have gone off smoothly.” A smug smile flicks against his lips, an arrogant lift of his head even as he offers a salute-style wave towards Douglas. “Hi, by the way,” he offers. He glances back towards Nell and smiles at her. “That sounds fascinating. I’m sure she’ll love it. Thank you,” he says again.

Nell is clearly taken aback by the kiss, not expecting it. She offers Angelus a small smile, even though her nose wrinkles as she sinks down into the plush armchair. "Oh, uh. You're welcome! I'm happy to help. You'll have to let me know how she reacts. I… trick. What?" Her eyes flash toward Douglas, her expression suddenly suspicious. Because boys… ew. Ulysses's question toward Maddie gains full attention. "Everything okay, Maddie?"

Madeline glances at Angelus again - he kissed her! He just kissed! She balls her hands tightly, while pointedly turning away from him, and looking back at Ulysses. She bites her lip and shifts uncomfortably. Oh, if /this/ isn't an uncomfortable question to be asked with the target of ire /right over there/. "I just don't much like Eibon," she mutters quietly. He isn't really going to expect her to explain /why/ with Angelus sitting right over there, is he?

Towards Nell, she manages a forced smile. "I'm fine!" she calls brightly. Which is technically true.

The look Ulysses gives Madeline is rather stern. And if she had any wonder why some others were cowed by him, the nearly 'big brother' look one well-polished for intervention's sake. He shakes ahead at the tea, and instead points to the exit, "You. Come." It's really as simple as that. The boy doesn't even wait for her… he just heads for the exit.

Douglas just gives an amiable shrug as he leans back in his chair and closes his eyes, enjoying the warmth of the fire. "Right, if anyone comes by for advice today, tell them I'm meditating on the wonders of the world, and the basic answers are flowers, chocolates, and don't be a creepy weirdo."

Madeline lets out a sigh, and follows Ulysses - dragging her blanket and carrying her text book along with her. She really, really wanted some tea right now.

Nell tilts her head, casting Madeline a curious glance. As the pair appear to be departing, she waggles her fingers into a wave of farewell. "Don't be a creepy weirdo," she echoes Douglas. "That's… yeah. Probably very basic and important."

Looking quite the manly big shot with a sneezing cat cradled in his arms, Ulysses leads Madeline out of the common room.

Angelus nods as he smiles warmly, bowing his head a little to Nell. “Will do,” he promises. Another glance is aimed towards Douglas, and then he shakes his head as he looks back to Nell. “It wasn’t,” he assures, a smirk slipping across his lips as he shrugs plainly. He steps backward, a glance over his shoulder, and collapses in the sofa as he looks around the common room. He quirks a brow as he watches Ulysses and Madeline exit, glancing towards Nell again, and then releasing a soft sigh. “I missed something, I think,” he says as he frowns. A hum escapes the youth and he glances back to Nell. “Or Evans is still upset with me,” he says on a sigh. “Apparently I offended her while I was playing around.” He frowns as he glances down to the floor, looking saddened by the admittance. “Didn’t like my apology either.”

Nell frowns faintly as she watches the pair depart the common room. "What did you say to upset her? I noticed that things seemed kinda tense between you two, but I have no idea why."

Angelus releases a sigh. “I can’t recall the words,” he says softly. “But I was boasting. Having a bit of fun.” His shoulders roll backwards. He focuses his blue eyes on Nell after looking towards the exit. “I got a little carried away.” He lets out a hum and shifts on the couch so that he can rest his arm on the armrest. “I can’t do anything to help it, unfortunately,” he says dejectedly. He glances down at himself, picking up the Eye of Truth in his hand, lifting it a little as he studies it before he lets it fall back to his chest and looks to Nell. “I guess I can’t blame her for not accepting my apology if she doesn’t trust me. It’s not like she knows or understands me.” A sigh escapes him. “I hope that I don’t scare you off though. Our names /rhyme/, right? We’re meant to be friends,” he adds in, picking up a little of his enthusiasm at the end and offering a smile.

Nell purses her lips in thought, casting Angelus a pensive look. "Well. I don't know exactly what you said or what happened to make her so upset, but Maddie's a great person. If you did something to upset her, she probably really thinks you meant it. Maybe if you try really hard, you can show her that it was a mistake, just a misunderstanding. Sometimes talking about stuff like that helps, you know?" She offers a small grin as she pushes herself up from the armchair. "Nell and Gel, you bet. Friends. Lemme know how the bicycle idea goes. I'd better get going now though. Charms homework to finish. See you later, Gel."

Angelus spreads his arms briefly. “I can give it a try, but it’s really up to her.” But he smiles weakly, and shifts as if trying not to let it bother him. He nods his head to her. “Yes, and I’ll get you those books.”

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