(1939-08-02) Assembling a Broken Man
Details for Assembling a Broken Man
Summary: Elijah tracks down a very drunk and despondent Gideon.
Date: 2 August, 1939
Location: Gideon's old apartment, Hoxton
Related: Finding Niamh

A wall-mounted lamp flickers, buzzing in protest as it nears its death. The flashing light inconsistently illuminating the dingy space that passes for a lobby in the Hoxton Apartments. A sweaty, beer-bellied man with a greasy moustache stands with his hands on his hips, sighing. He gazes down to the floor, where an unshaven ginger-haired man in a dirty trenchcoat is slumped up against the door of Apartment 1D, his head lolled to the side, a bit of drool glistening on his lower lip. An empty bottle of scotch is clutched in his left hand. His right is swollen, the knuckles split open and bloody.

"Adamantus." The quiet call of the name rings warm and muted against the patched-up wall. Elijah walks up slowly to the other man in the hallway, offering, "I'll take it from here, thank you." He ushers the man off with a few quid and turns to look at Gideon's slumped form.

The greasy manager gives Elijah a heavy sigh. "'E's been 'ere for hours. Too bloody 'eavy for me to move, wot wif my bad back. Keeps goin' on 'bout some woman an' a 'curse'. Been a long time since I seen a man dat drunk." The man takes the money and leaves Elijah to it, happy to wash his hands of the matter.

Gideon's eyes flutter slightly when the manager's door slams shut. He stares through a slitted gaze at Elijah's shoes, making a nearly inaudible gurgling sound. Then it comes, as he heaves toward Elijah's feet to unleash the contents of his stomach.

Elijah has been vomited on any number of times in service of the law, so he merely makes a bit of a cringy face as his new shoes get ruined. Upon completion of Gideon's literal stomach emergency, Elijah flicks what he can from his feet down the hallway and kneels down next to his former partner, giving him a pat on the back of the neck, "Gideon. We've got work to do."

Gideon spits to remove the last dribbles of his unpleasant issue. "Ffffuck you, Keenan." He manages to sit upright again, thunking the back of his head against the door. With a wince, he rolls his head to look at Elijah's face through bloodshot eyes. "Lovegrood…the fuck're you here…"

"I've got a good idea of who's behind the attacks, but…recent events have transpired that have left me under scrutiny. Now, come." Elijah stands up, straightening his vest out before offering his one good arm to help Gideon stand, "There's much to discuss."

Gideon scowls at Elijah, though more out of an attempt to process what he's saying than true displeasure. He sighs, shutting his eyes for a moment, then slaps his arm into Elijah's grip and pushes with his feet to slide up the door. The first attempt ends with him right back on the floor. But the second time around, he manages to get to his feet. He takes out his wand, and touches it to the lock of his door, and it swings open, allowing him to stumble inside. Immediately he goes into the kitchen, opening cupboards.

"No, you go shower. I'll see what I can scrounge up for breakfast," Elijah states, moving to close the cupboards, and shooing Gideon towards the bathroom with his hands, "Don't dally, Adamantus."

Gideon suddenly takes a wild swing at Elijah with his good hand. But inebriated as he is, the only thing he manages to punch is air, and nearly tumbles to the floor again. He props himself against the refrigerator, staring at Elijah for a moment. At last he lowers his head, mumbling, "Dinnae mother me…" Nevertheless, he shuffles off toward the bathroom, shedding his coat in the entryway as he goes.


Gideon's fork clatters loudly on his plate after taking in the last bite of eggs. Hair still damp, wearing only a pair of trousers, he stares across the tiny, wobbly table at Elijah. A shower and a meal have cleared his head enough to function, at least. "She might still be alive, Elijah," he says hoarsely. "All they found were ashes. It could have been someone else."

Elijah refuses to play into fueling a hope that may very well be unfounded, so he remains quiet, placing another bite of eggs as his eyes move up to rest on Gideon. He clears his throat and asks, "How's your hand?"

Gideon looks down at the swollen mess of his right hand. "Too drunk to try a Patch-Up Spell," he mutters. He lifts his steely eyes to Elijah, shaking his head. "I know you. You're evading. Dinnae tell me you dinnae think she could be alive. There's no solid evidence, Elijah."

"You know I've never been one to write off a possibility until proven otherwise," Elijah states, setting his fork down quietly and dabbing at his mouth with a napkin as he continues, "At this particular juncture, I have no leanings in either direction. I only wish to prevent you from letting hope poison you any more than that bottle of scotch."

"Fuck you and your fucking logic. Hope is all I have." Gideon shuts his eyes, his face tensing as he fights against the boiling emotions threatening to spill over. "So…prove it, Elijah. If she's dead, find evidence to prove it. Or prove she's alive. I have to know."

"There's nothing I can do to prove that she's alive or dead, Adamantus…" he pauses, wiping his hands off with the napkin before folding it and setting it atop his plate, "…but I think I know of a way to avenge her."

"Avenge her?" Gideon's face tightens in anger. "If I avenge her, I'm admitting she's been killed!" He slams his right hand on the table, wincing in pain. His voice soften, cracking as tears well up in his eyes. "I cannae believe that, Elijah. I cannae give up on her."

Elijah leans back and crosses one leg over the other, his hands coming to rest on his stomach as he examines Gideon from across the table, "Then help me avenge those who we /know/ are gone."

Gideon clenches his teeth, fighting the surging despair. "That's nae my job any more. Dammit, Elijah. She's your friend. You have love for her, aye? Help me."

"It's not your job? Adamantus Gideon it is your job as someone who I've always considered a damned good man to stand up for those who have had their lives taken away from them," Elijah stands slowly as he says this, eventually leaning against the table with his good arm supporting him. "Of course I love her, Adamantus, but I also know that she would put herself last on the list of people to tend to in this situation."

Gideon rises with him, though unsteadily. "Aye, she would, but I don't, and neither should you! She's my wife, man! Dinnae speak to me about loss. I've already lost one wife to the flames. I will nae lose another! So, are you going to help me?"

"Of course I'll help you, Adamantus, but you've got to promise me that you stay in control," Elijah's gaze is unshaking as he stares into Gideon's eyes, "You will not drink. You will not fight. And you will follow my lead, acting, on a surface level, as a consultant in this matter to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. Do you understand my terms?"

Gideon snorts, sneering in disbelief…but as his drink-addled brain realises just how serious Elijah is, his expression softens. "I do this, and you help me find Niamh?" He rubs at his reddened eyes, and nods. "Fine. Done. But she's our first priority. I'll not avenge her unless I know she's…" He physically shudders, choking on his own restrained tears, unable to say the word.

"You have my word, however much that means to you, anymore, that I help you find her, Adamantus," He raises his eyebrows to the man as he offers an assuring nod, "Now, would you care to hear what you've missed out on over the previous week?" Before hearing an answer, Elijah sits back down in his chair, ready to begin explaining.

Gideon nods with a heavy breath, rubbing his eyes again. "Aye. Alright, let's hear it. I'll make more coffee." Tea just won't cut it. Adamantus shuffles to the kitchen to put on a fresh pot.

Elijah fetches a brand new pack of Lucky Strikes out of his pocket and begins to slap them against his hand, "I swear I'm up to two packs a day, now." He tears a small square out of the foil and tosses it to the plate, "A few days ago, an Auror by the name of Rena Lee approached myself and a few others and stated that she had received a letter from an anonymous contact of hers explaining that there was a mole inside of the M.L.E.; pegging Snively as the one in question." He slips a cigarette from the pack and tosses it to the middle of the table, allowing for Gideon to take one should he decide to.

"Upon refusing to reveal to us her source, explaining that his life might be in danger, I decided to look into this, myself." He strikes a match and holds it to the end of his cigarette, puffing a large clouds of smoke out as he pulls the flame to the tobacco. A brief drag and he continues, "I divined that Snively was innocent of such charges and brought this to her attention. She continued to refuse to reveal her source, but I managed to compile a list of possibilities after extrapolating her known associates. Three names sprang to the front of my mind; the vampire Cruentus, Cassius Malfoy…and Brad Moody."

Gideon snorts as he fills a pot with water. "Cruentus Vermilion? He knows better. He may be strong, but the last thing he wants is a squad of Aurors cursing him to ashes. As for Malfoy and Moody…bloody hell. That's all politics. What's their motive?"

"Well, before I answer you that, allow me to continue." Elijah takes a drag from his cigarette and exhales the smoke quickly from the side of his mouth, "I tailed Moody that night to his home. Quiet, unassuming night like I've seen thousands of times before, but…as the night drew on, I noticed a nigh-invisible figure leaving through the back. I decided to steer clear for lack of any sort of support, but something was up. Call it a gut feeling." He leans forward and continues, "I was assigned Moody's case the next morning, and it was revealed to me that he, in fact, was Rena's contact. So, I tailed him again. He ducked into an alleyway and began to apparate, but I managed to grab him, leaving us both splinched in the Scottish wilderness." He gestures to his be-slinged arm.

"I took this as an opportunity to attempt to try and coax some information out of him." A hand runs back through his hair as his eyes move to rest on Gideon, "He gave me a note indicating that an attack was imminent on some meeting of his, but I overlooked it for the time being. I asked why he had been feeding false information to Auror Lee and he refused to admit that he had. I then asked who was visiting his home at such an hour to which he responded; his boyfriend John Rockwell. Seemingly innocent, yes?"

"Huh. So Moody's got a taste for sausage." Gideon sets the coffee pot on the stove, lighting the burner the Muggle way. He's got enough sense to avoid casting spells, especially fire spells, until he's truly sober. "So, he's blowing smoke up your arse?"

"It would seem so," Elijah responds before taking another drag from his smoke, "However, during the course of my interrogation in the woods, he lied to me several times, but you've seen how well my lie-detector bit holds up in court. I attempted to intimidate him and he pulled a wand on me. I narrowly escaped his Stupefy and disarmed him before continuing my line of questioning. He played off the attack as if he was simply trying to subdue me, so he could reach the meeting in time. The meeting that the aforementioned John Rockwell was attending. I countered this argument by saying that he was smart enough to know that I'd have informed the MLE of my whereabouts and that if I'd come up dead, they'd move straight to him." Elijah taps his cigarette over his plate, allowing the ashes to fall upon it.

"It was at this point that he managed to get to his wand and disapparate away to St. Mungo's. I followed him, but one of the healers would not allow me to continue my line of questioning." Elijah rubs at the bridge of his nose, "The meeting he warned me about was attacked, leaving several dead…including John Rockwell. My only lead."

"Any chance he's telling the truth?" Gideon leans up against his countertop, remaining in the kitchen while the coffee brews.

"With the amount of evidence I have, to everyone else, this is just a series of freak coincidences. But I've talked to the man, Gideon. I can tell he's lying to me," Elijah, frustrated at the whole affairs just slumps back in the chair once more, taking a drag from the cigarette.

Gideon nods slowly. He might be the only man in Britain who grasps the certainty with which Elijah can read a person. "So, what do we know about the attackers? You said several dead…so I'm assuming there were survivors."

"The attacked was a man named Thomas Carrow, owner of a bookstore on Diagon Alley," responds Elijah, snuffing his cigarette out on his plate, "He was brought in by Auror Cohen and readily confessed to the attack. Or so I read in the transcripts. He also went on to finger Cohen for having an involvement with the organization that he's a part of, the Muggle Liberation Front. Rambling something on about how Cohen betrayed their cause or something. I still haven't interviewed the Auror, but I'm sure a short conversation will clear this up." The tired man sighs and goes on, "There's one survivor; man named Luke Carrow, who has also been brought in for questioning, but I've yet to hear from him."

"The attackers were four, three of which are unknown. Thomas Carrow, owner of a bookstore on Diagon Alley was apprehended at the scene," explains Elijah, snuffing his cigarette out on his plate, "He was brought in by Auror Cohen and readily confessed to the attack. Or so I read in the transcripts. He also went on to finger Cohen for having an involvement with the organization that he's a part of; the Muggle Liberation Front. Rambling something on about how Cohen betrayed their cause or something. I still haven't interviewed the Auror, but I'm sure a short conversation will clear this up." The tired man sighs and goes on, "There's one survivor; Luke Carrow who issued a statement claiming that four figures arrived and attacked before talking about how 'Graham was late' and how maybe he was 'held up at the Ministry'."

"Thomas Carrow. I've met the man at his shop. I would'nae have pegged him as the type." Gideon shakes his head wearily. "Not afraid to voice his opinion. But murder? I'd never have guessed." He eyes the coffe pot impatiently. It had been a long while since he'd had to make his own. Niamh always took care of it for him. "So first Snively is accused…now Cohen. Someone's trying awfully hard to make the M.L.E. look bad."

"Those are my thoughts exactly, Gideon," Elijah says, standing from his chair and beginning to pace the floor, "I only wish I had not showed my hand so quickly by attacking Moody in the woods. I feel I could have gotten much more information from him." His good hand slips into his pocket and he asks, "Cohen is a good man. I can't even begin to believe his involvement in this sordid affair."

"Maybe too good. Don't write him off 'til you've talked to him." Gideon's eyes drift to his cupboard, but he tears them away. "Hey. Gimme one of your cigarettes."

Elijah moves to pluck up his pack of smokes as he paces back towards them and pulls one out, offering it to Gideon, "Carrow then went on to claim responsibility for the attacks on Diagon Alley. Attacks…that Brad Moody's organization, The Army of Truth was catching a lot of flak for."

Gideon takes the cigarette in a shaky hand, then bends over to use the stove burner to light it and takes a heavy drag. "You've got a helluva case on your hands. Can't wait to 'consult' on it. But first things first, Lovegood." He gestured toward the man with his cigarette. "First we find my wife. Now, the way I see it, she could have been grabbed in the confusion of the attack. It was chaos. Niamh dinnae have any enemies, so it was either a crime of opportunity, or one of my enemies. I'm betting on the Montagues. But I cannae get near them now without a badge."

Elijah deflates a little bit on the inside as Gideon's mind reverts to Niamh, but he just nods to the man, "Alright, well I shall see what I can do to get in the same room as Wolfgang, and just hope that that horrid Sweeney man is nowhere near."

"Take me with you. I have to be there. Besides, you'll need me if Sweeney is around. I've put him down before, I can do it again." Gideon takes another long drag from the cigarette, pretending it's a glass of scotch. "But I doubt it's Wolfgang. Or if it is, he's on orders from his Da."

"I'll agree to this, only if you let me do the talking. You're there for morale support, understand?" Elijah tilts his head as he asks this question, extending his hand to the man, "And after that's settled, I'm going to bring you along with me when I speak to Auror Cohen. I've been working with him for a while now, so my viewpoint could be skewed." Of course Elijah's viewpoint isn't skewed, but if he can get Gideon back in that office, helping people, he'll do it any way he can.

"Like hell," Gideon growls. "You'll agree to this because you've already agreed to it. I told you, Niamh comes first. I'll nae waste time while I could be getting closer to finding her. Your case is your case. I'll help you with if after we've found my wife."

Elijah eyes Gideon for a few moment more, his harsh gaze meeting Gideon's with equal intensity. But after a short time, he simply gestures his hand towards him again, offering the man a nod.

Gideon calms when Elijah relents, though already his breath was growing heavy as his emotions rose. He's always had a temper, but only once before in his life have his emotions been this close to the surface. "Meanwhile, I've got a few more snitches I can shake up."

Elijah lets his hand fall to his side before it slips into his pocket. After a moment he slips past Gideon and opens the cupboard he's been eyeing, plucking whatever bottle of liquor is tucked within it, "Alright, then. I'll head back to the office and see if I can dig anything recent up on Wolfgang or his father."

Gideon gestures in protest at Elijah confiscating his booze. But he holds his tongue, remembering his promise. Besides, if he feels the need to break it, there are plenty of liquor stores. "Do me a favour. If anyone asks — the O'Sheas, for instance — you haven't seen me.

Elijah grins at Gideon and offers him a pat on the back, saying, "We'll find her, Adamantus. You've got the world's greatest detective on your side now, right?" He flips the bottle around in his hand for a moment before setting it on the counter in front of Adamantus, giving him an 'I'm watching you' look before he begins moving towards the door.

Gideon stares at the bottle, running a hand down his face. But he doesn't touch it, leaving it where it sits. Coffee will be ready soon. He needs coffee. He glances over to watch Elijah go, considering if there is anything else to say. But nothing comes. The silence can speak volumes on its own.

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