(1939-05-03) Pestering In the Park
Details for Pestering In the Park
Summary: Beryl was enjoying her Saturday in Kensington Gardens. But then, that pesky Auror Cohen accosted her again.
Date: 1939-05-03
Location: Kensington Gardens

Springtime has overtaken the greener parts of London town, and Kensington Gardens is no exception. A verdant fog has crept over the landscape, and the newly budding trees are filled with the joyous singing of birds. In the midst of this rapture, Beryl Crabbe has decided to take the air for a while, leaving her Notting Hill flat behind. Some fresh air will do her good.
After walking a short distance, however, the woman becomes slightly fatigued. Taking a seat on the ledge of a trickling fountain, she breathes a little sigh. A nanny slowly pushing a fancy pram along before herself just happens to pass by where Beryl sits, and her gaze lingers long on them. Even after they have gone some distance away, her focus remains on the pair with a faint smile. She appears to be lost in thought and unaware of anything else at the moment.

Graham has seemed to decide on step one of what to do. Is to at least try and find out what's going on and see if there is a danger. He was able to get the address from the office records though he is still walking down the street towards the place when he happens to look to his side and spots the one he'd come to see sitting lightly on a bench. The auror pauses a moment before turning course and making his way down the walkway towards where she relaxes.

Beryl remains unaware of the pestiferous Auror who is apparently haunting her footsteps. If once made aware of the fact that Graham is near at hand, she will very likely change her demeanor completely. However, for the time being, she just remains at peace by herself, watching families and children. Her mind is deeply preoccupied with many things, and her otherwise perfectly poised expression changes every so often. They are minuscule changes, mostly in her eyes. Ranging from a hint of doubt and worry, to reflect some thought of inner joy that washes away whatever else may be troubling her.

The young man doesn't wish to startle the other and so he'll clear his throat as he approaches though he finishes his walk to a more conversational distance before speaking properly. " Afternoon Miss Crabbe, it is quite lovely out." Graham speaks and his town is light and friendly he is wishing to make sure it is known he's not here as an auror to bother her, but he'll watch her for reaction and of course will speak further if need be on that subject.

The reverie is broken. Beryl is not startled by Graham, but her green eyes flash toward him in an instant. The moment of recognition passes uneventfully, and her expression changes from one of mild surprise to the definitive look that bespeaks: 'Oh, it's you…'
"It is that, Mister Cohen," Beryl replies in her silvery little voice - just a tad formal. "I can't seem to fall over for fear of landing on an Auror, lately. What do you want?" She then asks, getting straight to the heart of the issue without any delay. "If this is about Ilbert Carrow /again/, I'll tell you the same thing I told the other one: I work for HECTOR Carrow, not Ilbert. And my employer is not much in the habit of keeping company with his family. Given their seeming proclivity to crime, one can scarcely blame him."

Graham lifts his hands in surrender at her words though he gives a friendly smile which likely wont be her expected response. "You can call me Graham if you'd like." he will say first though he does look over the other as she takes in his appearance. "I'm not here as an auror though I am not investigating you nor your employer." he says with some assurance to his voice he really isn't here on duty it would seem.

Suspicion clouds Beryl's cool green eyes, and her gaze narrows upon Graham quite severely for a long, heavy moment. One can't blame the woman for supposing that the Auror has some ulterior motive in seeking her out. However, given the circumstances and Graham's unassuming demeanor, she begins to ease off a little.
Relaxing somewhat, the auburn-haired beauty glances away, allowing her features to slip into a far more neutral expression before she speaks again: "What then?" She asks, not replying in the affirmative or negative with regards to his first name. "You're a man with something on his mind, that much is plain."

"I have a habit of doing that, thinking that is. I also wasn't kidding about having a protective streak of those I care about." Graham can tell at first she doesn't believe his motives but she does seem to relax a bit as he doesn't launch into an auror type speech. "True, I am here because of Signe." he says vaguely to hopefully continue his relaxation that he isn't here on false pretenses or anything.

Beryl's gaze drifts toward Graham once more. One perfectly shaped eyebrow arches quizzically, and she replies: "Siggy is doing alright for herself, it seems to me. What concern is it of yours? She's been doing well - and seems to be heading on to even better things. It's more than most could hope for in her position, and I'm grateful that life has been so kind."
Giving a light shrug of her shoulders, Beryl's keen eyes remain focused on Graham. She is such a tiny woman. Tough in spirit, obviously, but somehow seemingly no where near as robust as her little sister, judging by her looks. Could she really be involved with the likes of people who would otherwise end up on an MLE most wanted list?

Graham nods in agreement "She is doing very well, with the opera and last evenings events her career is taking off and I hope that it continues to do so." he speaks honestly to the other he takes a moment to clarify his thoughts before he will speak more. "The concern is that she is dear to me, in the cauldron twice I hard the name Tiberius. While he isn't a work related concern either, he is a concern to me." he sighs slightly.

Caution, and a certain watchful sharpness begin to slip into Beryl's look and manner once more. No comment is made in response to Graham's feelings toward Signe, but her gaze narrows again at the mention of Tiberius. "Mister Tripe has absolutely nothing to do with my sister, Mister Cohen. You have an unusually suspicious mind if you think he has. She said herself that she hopes to meet him - therefore making it painfully clear that their paths have never yet crossed."
Pausing a moment to lift her delicate chin haughtily, Beryl makes a point of looking away whilst trying to regain her composure to some degree. "Besides, he's my…" The words escape before she can prevent them. However, she falls silent thereafter.

"Please don't mistake me Miss Crabbe. I know that you would do anything for your sister and would never let any harm come to her." Graham looks on to her "I am paid to have a suspicious mind, but its not that there have been certain events involving Mr Tripe which rouses my suspicion." he knows this will be rebuked and so he explains "Pretending to poison my sisters drink at the cauldron.. turning ivisable to get past her guards and not seeing at all why that could cause a defensive reaction, and other events." he finishes the examples "I only ask for caution, i'm not making a threat or even implying anything, but as I said I have a protective streak and so saying nothing would drive me around the bend." the auror gives a smile again.

Beryl's prim little jaw flexes as her teeth grind together. Without so much as turning toward Graham, she listens to his words, saying nothing in response. What is it about these bloody Aurors? Why can they never allow her a moment's peace or respite? Every time she encounters one, her stress level elevates to the point of making her feel unwell.
"I never said Tiberius was without fault. He's reckless, and occasionally unwise. I've done my best to curb his instincts in that regard, and will continue to do so." Beryl snaps, half closing her eyes and leaning heavily on one hand as she sits. The other, she holds close to herself, over her lower abdomen. "What more do you want from me? Why don't you tell your /sister/ to stop playing with fire? She so enjoys getting her wings singed around the edges. Sometimes, it takes TWO to make trouble, Mister Cohen."

Graham frowns slightly "I do not mean to anger you, I've asked all I am going to really that was it. Is" He says seeing that he's upset her which wasn't the point of him coming here not in the slightest. "I have spoken to Rhyeline long before now, and can only hope she takes my advice as well. I apologize if you've been badgered by auror's but I am only here as myself truly." he pauses a moment "I share Signe's thoughts if you are happy that is a good thing, and perhaps your correct that he only needed a more stable presence in his life."

Well, that's a change from the usual. Beryl is unused to being agreed with by an Auror or Ministry worker upon any subject. The surprise that Graham has even spoken to Rhyeline about the issue shows quite plainly on her face as she turns abruptly to look at him once more. For one fleeting instant, she tries to gauge the sincerity of his statement; and she appears to be satisfied.
"I appreciate and accept your apology, Mister Cohen," Beryl says at length, even going so far as to offer a faint smile. She is a lady, after all. No matter what the Rhyeline Diderots and Bailey Potters of the world seem to think. "And… thank you for watching out for Siggy. She means the world to me."

"Of course, I hope you are feeling better? I didn't have a chance to say but I have a good friend who's a Master Healer at St Mungo's." Graham says and its sort of an offer he can make the call as they say. He returns the smile as its given but her other words get a small shrug from the man. "I've told Signe before beyond handling a bit of a handy brute, who grabbed her when she stepped off stage i've hardly done anything. I enjoy her company, and of course i'll watch out for her. She speaks just as highly of you, though i'm sure you knew that before now." he chuckles.

The woman's expression softens considerably, and her look changes toward that far-off, thoughtfulness that was lingering when Graham first arrived. "I am a little better today, thank you," she replies quietly. Saint Mungo's being mentioned causes a slight hint of tension before she waves it off: "There isn't anything a healer could do to cure what ails me, Mister Cohen." It's an odd thing to say, considering how little there is (medically speaking) that modern healers can't manage.
Returning to the subject of Signe, Beryl offers a half-smile: "Siggy is a sweetheart. She puts me too highly on a pedestal. Nobody is as grand and perfect as she makes me out to be, but I try not to disillusion her or disappoint her."

Graham listens and concern coming over his face at the denial of the help of a doctor "I am sorry it isn't my place perhaps, but something is wrong then? Does Signe know?" he asks worried for her and her sister if something is medically not right. He does listen to her next words though and manages a smile. "I doubt you could disappoint her, she is sure of you and that is good to have. She certainly is a good person, it is why all our mis-adventures so far including taking her on a tour of the ministry where she met a ghost and a dodo bird are always fun."

"No… no, nothing is /wrong/." Beryl responds quickly. Although her words come easily and a bit hurried, they are genuine. Unfortunately for her, what "ails" her is something one simply doesn't discuss with a man, or a stranger… let alone someone so very close to being a mortal enemy - whether he knows it or not. "Don't worry about Siggy. We'll talk about it when she drops by to visit, later."
She really does wish that she might not ever disappoint her little sister, but the fact of the matter is… that she probably will, someday. "Poor darling. I never have understood why most people have to be idiots about Squibs, trying to cut them off from the society that bred them. My goal, for years, has been to prove them wrong about Signe. She can be a far more productive citizen inside or outside of our world than most."

"Well I hope that is true, for your and Signe's sake of course." Graham says he'll drop it as the subject changes back to the topic of blood purity "I do not know myself it is all nonsense anyways, but she rises above it very well. She even gave me a few ideas which I am trying to help the ministry implement to help Squibs adapt the same way there is help for Muggleborn witches and wizards. I couldn't believe there hadnt been anything already in the works." he pauses a moment though wondering when he'll have the chance to ask questions to her like this again. "Can I ask you something, about Signe's singing I mean."

"I hear a great deal about the inefficiency of Muggle political circles," Beryl remarks with a pointed smirk: "And yet, it seems that we fare no better at making the cogs and wheels spin any faster."
The question causes her to pause and look more seriously upon Graham. "Naturally, Mister Cohen. I've no objection. Though I admit that I can't tell you very much from the technical side of things. I'm lucky to carry a tune - if I'm inclined to give it a try." She says with a light chuckle.

Graham sighs but nods his head "It is quite true, i'm sure even when I report this obvious hole in the system. It will be put through committee and red tape, I just hope it can be put into practice. I mean for Signe, but also for the future." he chuckles "I am not very musical myself, though I enjoy listening and watching." he will admit before he looks a tad more serious at his question. "Signe, has the support of you and her family but on more than one occasion she's said she cant perform on the magical side of things." trying to figure out how to pose his question. "She seemed to think doing so would be throwing her existence into too much focus. I know you would be fine but would the others really turn on her for that do you think?"

Yet again, Beryl's expression darkens. Something truly angry darkens her eyes, but the anger is not directed at Graham. It's something far deeper.
"Our mother's family - the Goyles - might not be best pleased about the attention, but they've never concerned themselves with Signe since they realized she was worthless to them. As a consequence of that, I've not concerned myself with /them/ over the ensuing years. The same can be said of our father and his family. Mother raised us to be our own women, to be strong enough to stand on our own and not be bullied and interfered with by familial meddling. That's how she came to marry such a wretched man, and she would spare her daughters the same fate."
Pausing for breath, Beryl calms herself after the tirade, saying: "I can't promise that the family won't be displeased; but, if they are, they may all frankly boil their collective heads in a cauldron."

The auror listens to the explanation his face falling a bit, he doesn't like to think of the other being confined or fearful of such stupid things as being turned on for being who they are. Graham will speak however after a moment "I don't believe she will push that boundary she's setup, I agree with you that she should be free to perform where she will but since it is a family matter I don't ever push in fact usually I've been the one helping her make up an excuse of late so she doesn't have to be shy about it."

"She ought to just make up a name for herself to perform under. Of course the family would know, but then again, nobody else would, necessarily." Beryl replies lightly. It's not a facetious suggestion. She's quite in earnest, and seems to think it a good answer to the problem. "She can't keep letting the ridiculous family prejudices get in the way of her career. Come hell or high water. Wherever she lands - Muggle world or Wizarding world - she needs to land on her feet and be unafraid of those old dragons."

Graham smirks slightly "That's not a half bad idea really." he says though a part of him doesn't think the singer would go for such a thing all the same she shouldn't be held back by this of course. "I agree that she is her own person and shouldn't have to fear anyone. Well she has an over concerned auror and a good sister on her side so far?" he says brightly though he does glance about the gardens a moment before back to the other.

"Siggy has the wherewithal and resilience to make it in life - and to go far. She always had a gift for making friends and keeping them. That's never been my strong suit." It's not terribly conducive to the lifestyle of a cursebreaker or treasure hunter, after all, to make friends and influence people. As a rule, one spends the majority of their time among the belongings of the dead.
Rising to her feet slowly, the little woman steadies herself and primly brushes away any wrinkles from her clothing: "But really, I'd better be going back now. It's been good to get a little fresh air."

The auror will shift where he's standing but nods "I am glad to have met her myself." he says easily enough he looks on to the other as she stands and will nod to what she says "Of course, I appologize for disturbing you, but thank you for speaking with me Miss Crabbe." he says and it seems he means the words he speaks he'll nod his head to her. "If you do see your sister this evening please give her my regards." he adds before he will turn to walk back the way he had come but he wont until or if she responds.

A little of Beryl's sarcasm returns, but it isn't particularly biting as it is normally wont to be: "Disturbing people seems to be part of an Auror's job. At least it is in my experience. Think nothing of it."
Pausing and doing a little half turn at his parting words, Beryl tilts her head so that the unruly curls fall across half of her pretty face: "I'll be sure to do that. Good afternoon, Mister Cohen." And she quickly turns aside, heading out of the park and back toward Notting Hill.

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