(1939-08-13) A Talk of Books and Muggles
Details for A Talk of Books and Muggles
Summary: Cyril and Aris discuss books, Muggles and Aris's future at Hogwarts.
Date: August 13, 1939
Location: Cyril Malfoy's Residence

Aris sits by the window in the Study, a fresh copy of The Dark Forces: A Guide to Self-Protection opened in her lap. She sits hunched over it, eyes a scant few inches from the page as though the words might somehow jump off the page and embed themselves in her brain forever. A small stack of text books ranging from Potion Opuscule to Hogwarts, A History sit on the floor near her feet. She may not yet be a student at Hogwarts yet, but she seems determined to be as prepared as she can be.

"And what archaic texts are my daughter reading today?" asks Cyril as he steps into the study, holding a stack of books of his own, moving to set them down on his desk. He moves to rest his hand on Aris' head, looking down at her book with a smile.

Aris tilts her head to look up at her father, a smile on her face as she lays a bookmark across the page and closes the tome politely. "The text books for Hogwarts. This chapter's about gnomes. Though they certainly make them sound a lot more polite than the ones we had in our garden were." She hugs the book to her chest, craning her neck to see the ones deposited on the desk. "What are those about?"

"Well, I've never met a gnome I could trust," remarks Cyril, looking back to the books on his desk, "Oh, nothing you'd find interesting, I'm sure. Muggle warfare over the past thousand years, books to help me brush up my Arabic, a copy of the Quran. Hardly compares to the study of potions and gnomes."

"The only gnomes I've met said things that I wouldn't dare repeat," Aris answers, though she's grinning knowingly at the suggestion. She glances up at Cyril, her brow furrowed thoughtfully. "Why do you need to know about Muggle wars? Isn't it all just hitting each other over the head with heavy things?"

"Because your father is a fan of Muggle history, darling. We wizards have been using the same old tricks for centuries. The Muggles adapt to their situation. It's really quite charming," Cyril says, moving to have a seat at his desk.

The look on Aris face is same one she might give if Cyril had explained he liked collecting empty sweet wrappers or broken quills. She doesn't understand the fascination at all. But still, curiosity gets the better of her and she puts her book aside to wander over to the desk and peer at the books. "Do you meet a lot of Muggles? What are they like?"

"I've met quite a few in my time, yes. They're very much the same as us, actually…" Cyril remarks, slipping a glasses case out of his desk drawer and pulling out a pair of spectacles which he wipes at with his shirt sleeve, "…if not a bit barbaric."

Aris does not appear entirely ready to believe that but given the source of the information she nods her head and takes it on board all the same. She reaches across the desk to try and pluck up the book on Muggle warfare for herself, curious over the contents. "They have funny names, too. I met one while I was shopping. Well, not a proper Muggle but a Muggle-born."

"Oh? Well, what kind of funny names do Muggles have, Aris?" Cyril looks over at her, sliding his glasses on and taking one of his books in hand before leaning back in his chair.

"The one I met was called Madeline," Aris answers, flipping over the book and poring over the contents, "Which isn't all that strange, I suppose. But they have other names like 'John' and 'Mary'. Is it because they find it hard to remember longer names?"

"I suppose. Though, I don't really find those names all that strange. I can imagine how you might, though, being so young and having a father named Cyril, an uncle named Cassius and an aunt named Edwarlinda," Cyril chuckles softly, flipping open his book. "I imagine you'll find 'John' and 'Mary' to be quite commonplace among your Hogwarts family."

"Undoubtedly," Aris replies, pulling a face at a particularly gruesome description found within the pages she reads, "And I shan't hold it against them if I do. They can't help having strange names."

"Precisely," Cyril responds before adding, "Only hold a man's decisions against him. Never those things that were decided for him." His golden eyes turn up in a smile as he returns to reading his book.

Aris nods her head, "I like that. Is that a saying or did you make it up?" She moves away from the desk, the Muggle history book still in hand, and sits herself primly down in another chair.

"Straight from your father's infinite font of wisdom, Aris," Cyril responds, flipping to the next page before deciding that reading is going to be futile for the time being. He sets the book down and crosses one leg over the other, asking, "Are you excited for your first year at Hogwarts?"

Aris closes her own book, mirroring her father. "Yes! That Muggle-born girl I met told me a lot about it and I've been reading Hogwarts, A History every night before bed. Do you think we could go shopping for a wand one day soon? I found a book on the beginner's guide to wand lore at the shop but it wasn't on the reading list so I didn't buy it. I flipped through it, though. I simply can't wait to see what kind of wand will pick me."

"Of course, dear. I'll send an owl to Mister Ollivander and make sure that he's expecting us. Wouldn't want to just drop in on a man as busy as he is this time of year. Barney, could you write down a reminder for me to mail something off?" Cyril calls to his valet who answers shortly with a "You got it."

Aris practically beams at the news, clapping her hands together and doing everything but bouncing up and down in her seat. "I simply cannot wait! Do you think I'll be sorted into Slytherin like you and Cassius? Or maybe Gryffindor like Aunt Edwarlinda? Madeline is in Gryffindor. She seemed to think highly of it."

"I believe you've the head of a Slytherin, dear Aris. Or perhaps a Ravenclaw. I can't say that I'd be ashamed either way," remarks Cyril, standing from his desk and moving to look out of his window at the parliament building with a smile.

"I think I would like to be a Slytherin," Aris admits, nodding her head and standing up to put the warfare book back on the desk. "I'm going to go read in my room, though, since you look like you have some reading of your own to do."

Cyril smiles at his daughter and nods to her, "I think you would do quite well there." He turns and leans down to give Aris a kiss on the top of the head, "Run along, then. And make sure not to be up too late tonight. We're going to be getting you a wand tomorrow."

Aris practically bounces once again, lifting her head to accept the kiss on her forehead and leaning upwards to return one to her father’s cheek. Then, full of excitement, she grabs up her collection of texts and rushes off towards her room.

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