(1939-08-13) Muggle Chemistry
Details for Muggle Chemistry
Summary: Lewis and Sorcha mess about with potions
Date: 08/13/1939
Location: MacDiarmarda Apothecary


Central Diagon Alley Diagon Alley

Wed Aug 13, 1939 ((Wed Aug 13 01:42:03 2014)) (J,2)

It is a summer night. The weather is warm and drizzling.

Diagon Alley is the largest collection of Wizarding businesses in the United Kingdom so it is no wonder that people always come here for their shopping needs. Especially just before school starts this crooked little alleyway is filled to the brink with people, vendors and even a few charlatans.

At this central location of the alley is some of the more important buildings that deserve the central placement. The cobbled street itself continues to crook off to the northeast towards the northeastern area of Diagon Alley, as well as it continues back to the southwest towards the alley entrance and the Leaky Cauldron.

Contents: Lewis Sorcha

Exits: [3] MacDiarmarda Apothecary [4] Sweet Temptations

[6] Madam Malkin's Robes [7] Gringott's Wizarding Bank

[N] Resident Alley [S] West Knockturn Alley

[NE] Northeast Diagon Alley [SW] Southwest Diagon Alley


School is about to start which would normally mean that the area would be teeming with young people getting their supplies for school, but with everything that's happened of late there are not nearly as many of them as would be expected. The apothecary shop appears to actually be closed at present, a black ribbon over the door and a hand lettered sign in the glass stating that due to a death in the family the shop isn't open for business. But, in front of the shop, Sorcha seems to be looking after things anyway. Currently she's cleaning the stoop, doing parts of it the old fashioned way with a broom, sweeping away dust and grime from others passing on the cobbles nearby.

Lewis had a friend of a friend who he found out just so happens to have a daughter who was an apothecary. After contacting this friend of a friend, he received permission to contact said daughter, and so he sent her a letter asking permission to meet with her. Now that he's received said permission, he's ready to meet with her. He stands outside the door, and then knocks on it. He says "It's me, Lewis!" He's carrying a briefcase filled with scientific equipment, primarily a microscope.

"Hello?" Sorcha asks, coming back around from knocking dust out of the broom from the side of the building. "Mr. Smith?" She smiles when she sees the man on the step knocking at the door, "I'm Sorcha, lovely to meet you." Nodding to the door she moves to open it, stepping through, "Please, do come in. Your request was a bit confusing, but I thought we could certainly discuss it at least?" She leaves him quite enough room to follow her into the shop.

You head towards MacDiarmarda Apothecary


MacDiarmarda Apothecary Diagon Alley

Wed Aug 13, 1939 ((Wed Aug 13 02:31:45 2014)) (B,2 SE)

It is a summer night. The weather is cool and drizzling.

Built in the late 1700s, MacDiarmarda Apothecary has been in business from the building's inception. Windows line the walls facing the street, a fireplace creates a cheery, homey atmosphere within. Shelves line the walls from floor to high ceiling, dusty wooden boxes of who knows what are held there. There is a large library ladder on wheels that helps the proprietress gather ingredients that may be out of her grasp normally. A counter stretches across the back of the store, a door behind it. There are two work areas, one next to the other. One is purely a 'cutting up' and preparing area, the table showing marks from use over the centuries. The other is the actual creating of a potion area- cauldrons, distillery and various sources of heat.

The store's interior is packed full of goods, with barrels of Purple Toad Warts, Flobberworm Mucus, Leech Juice and other large quantities of potion ingredients on the floor. Shelves that line the wall are filled with jars and old wooden boxes that contain Knotgrass, Aconite, Newt Eyes.. and many, many other herbs, roots and powders gathered across the decades, gathered across the continent. Bunches of feathers, fangs and claws hang from the ceiling, and in some cases the unwary customer may knock into them. The combination of smells coming from all these different ingredients PLUS the age of the shop itself, creates an overall.. odour of musty herbs, and 'time' that permeates every corner of the room.

Contents: Sorcha

Exits: [BR] Apothecary Backroom [O] Central Diagon Alley

[U] MacDiarmarda Apothecary Lo


Lewis arrives from Central Diagon Alley.

Lewis says "Hello, madame. Yes, I'm Lewis Smith." She offers to let him inside and says "Thank you, ma'am." He follows her inside and then says "By the way, I'm sorry to hear about your loss." He then sets his briefcase on the table and says "I'm a muggle with some interest in examining magic under muggle sciences. Particularly, I was thinking I'd like to examine the chemical processes involved in potions by running some experiments on them. Would this be ok with you? I am more than happy to pay for the potions I'd use, and since I'd be doing the research along with you, it might also help your apothecary some."

"Thank you." Sorcha replies when he mentions her loss, nodding over to a set of seats that are nearby amidst the shelves and cabinets. "I don't know that you'll find much, honestly, but my brother would likely be the one who could be of more help there. He's a bit more difficult to get to sit down, though. But, I'm happy to try if you like. So long as we pick simple potions it shouldn't do anything to terribly dangerous." She takes a seat and smiles, "Are there any potions in particular that you know you'd like to start with?"

Lewis has a seat and says "Thank you, madame." He considers for a moment about her potions. He says "Let's try Polyjuice potion, shall we?"

Lewis sets up some test tubes and beakers, along with the microscope. He points down to it and asks "I'm sorry if I sound condescending, but do you know what a microscope is?"

Smiling a bit more brightly with a hint of amusement, Sorcha shakes her head, "Polyjuice is quite a complicated potion, I don't think it would be wise to start there. And if it's… agitated it can be a bit volatile." She shakes her head, "I'm afraid I'm not familiar?" She stands up from her seat and goes over to one of the shelves, reading through several labels and bringing it over to a counter, "Here, will this suffice?" She holds up the bottle, "Shall we start with a headache calmer? It's not likely to react poorly."

Lewis nods and says "Very well, Ms. O'Shea. You'd know what's safe, I'm sure." He says "This is a microscope, it's a contraption designed to look at really tiny things." He then says "Anyways, I have a few chemicals here. I have a hypothesis that it reacts to a specific chemical in the human body. If we can find out what it is, we might be able to increase the potion's effectiveness." He then takes the bottle and says "Thank you." He pours a bit into a test tube. He then takes out a few droppers and says "With your permission, I'd like to pour a few drops of chemicals into the potion, and see if anything happens"

With a gesture towards his equipment, Sorcha moves around to the other side of the counter, "Please. There are several protective charms on the shop so it shouldn't cause any harm." She watches closely as he drops things here and there in the different tubes, seeing herself if there's any noticeable reaction to the chemicals he's using, though she doesn't pry into his work.

Lewis filles each of the tubes with potions. He puts a few drops of different chemicals into each of the potions, to try and get a reaction. Each is unsuccessful, until the very last chemical (chemical D). Suddenly, the potion starts to glow a blueish color, before it starts to sizzle, and then it turns clear again. Lewis immediately jumps for joy and says "Ah-ha! I found it, I found the chemical!" He then calms himself down and clears his throat. "I think it reacts to chemical D, madame."

"Oh?" Sorcha says curiously, having seen the reaction from the chemical and the potion of course, "Well… let's see…" She goes back over to her shelf, "The… alertness potion has several ingredients in common with the head soother? Perhaps the same reaction will take place there as well then?" She brings the vial over and sets it on the counter for him to distribute as he likes, "I wonder why it started to glow. It normally turns that color during the brewing process just before you add the leander."

Lewis says "Oh, really? Let's find out." He smiles as he takes the bottle, thanking Sorcha again, and then cleans out one of the test tubes before repeating the experiment with the new potion. The potion turns blue again. Lewis shouts "By George, I think we've done it!" He stands up and says "I think that if one were to take this potion along with supplements filled with chemical D, it'd increase the effectiveness of the potion greater than if the potion was taken alone!"

She smiles as he gets excited about the success of mixing the chemicals, "Are you certain that it's more effective?" She watches the two tubes with the potion in them, examining them closely now to see if she can tell anything about them from their color or consistency, "It's certainly an accomplishment, if nothing else, to find something that reacts similarly with both potions so quickly." She picks up the test tube and looks at it even more closely, "It… seems… alright… I'd certainly be careful with it at first? In case it changed the properties at all."

Lewis says "Well, the potion has to react to something in the human body. Logic seems to dictate that if there's a higher concentration of that in the human body, there should be a stronger reaction. Still, I can't be sure until we try the supplemented potion to see if it's more effective than a control". She suggests that he be careful with it. He smiles and says "I'm glad to see I'm working with a witch who knows what she's doing. In any medical or scientific endeavor, caution is very important. Having said that, I think we should attempt an experiment using a small dose as soon as possible. What do you think?"

Sorcha nods, "It does, of course… but magic isn't always… logical…" She looks at the tubes suspiciously, "I… suppose a small bit wouldn't be too terrible." She raises her eyebrows a bit, "What did you put in there exactly? You've just called it chemical D so far." Swirling it a little she asks, "Have you ever used an alertness potion before? Or a headache cure?"

Lewis says "Well no, I'm just a lowly muggle. I've never consumed a potion before." There's a hint of irony in his voice when he says "Lowly muggle". She asks what Chemical D is. He says "What is it? Oh well…I think I have it written down somewhere, let me check my briefcase." He checks, and looks at a slip of paper and says "Myxaltine. At least that's the brand name. A chemical you can find in any muggle drugstore. It's used to treat insomnia, normally."

"There's nothing lowly about muggles." Sorcha corrects before she looks at the potion again, "Well… I… here we go then." She takes a sip out of the test tube from the headache cure, tasting just a tiny bit and standing there… waiting… as if she's anticipating something odd might happen…

Lewis smiles when she corrects his self-depreciation. He says "Thank you, I'm glad you feel that way. Not all wizards do." Then again, she is a half-blood, so it makes more sense that she'd be tolerant towards muggles. Sorcha then tries to consume the substance. It has a fizzy texture in her mouth, not unlike soda pop. However, it leaves a burning sensation in her mouth not unlike alcohol. After being swallowed, she starts to become very light-headed and her eyes glaze over, she might even have difficulty standing up. However, after 5 seconds, her clouded head instantly clears up. Her eyes start to glow a little. The inside of her skull will be filled with a powerful, yet soothing, radiant feeling.

"Well, they can go fly a kite." Which is much more polite than she normally is. Sorcha blinks a little as she feels the effects of the potion, "Ah… this is… odd…" She sits down heavily on the stool behind the counter where she is. Which lasts a moment. Before she continues to sit further down by sliding off to sit on the floor. She does manage not to spill the test potion at all as she blinks a bit, "I… this is… odd…" She said that already. "Oh!" Then after a few more blinks she looks up, "Well… it didn't not work."

Lewis raises an eyebrow at her 'fly a kite' comment. When she has to sit down, he asks "Are you alright, miss?" However, she gets better, and mentions that it didn't not work. He says "Hm. Interesting. Was the potion stronger than normal?" He looks to the other bottle and says "Can we try it with the awareness potion?"

"It made me very lightheaded and then worked quite well, actually." Sorcha replies, "A bit fuzzy around the edges but very briefly." She looks at the awareness potion for a moment and then shrugs a shoulder, handing him the potion she's tried already before she takes the awareness potion, "I suppose the last one was fine." She takes a sip and waits a moment, seeing what happens with this one.

Lewis takes the bottle and sets it aside. When she consumes the second one, it'll have a similar initial effect to the first. After the lightheadedness exits her mind, she'll find that her awareness has increased greatly. She can perceive very minute details about the world around her. There's a fly buzzing in one of the corners. She can notice the sound of Lewis adjusting his tie a little. And there's also a little piece of lint on his shoulder. She'll be able to track his eye-movements, to know what he's looking at (for the most part, he's making perfect eye contact).

This time she's prepared for the lightheadedness and holds onto the counter for a moment when she has the headrush, blinking lightly at the sensation. "Well." Sorcha reaches over and knocks the lint off of Lewis's shoulder, "It did something very similar. The wooziness… but then a higher clarity of the potion for the second effect." She clears her throat, handing the other test tube back, "If you prepared someone for it it wasn't so terrible, though."

Lewis is startled when she suddenly pulls a bit of lint off of his suit. He says "Very interesting. I think if we put a sizable warning label on affected bottles, there wouldn't be a problem. Alright. How about we set up an exchange. For every two bottles of Myxaltine I give you, I get one bottle of Awareness potion? How does that sound?"

"I… suppose that's a good exchange." Sorcha says, "But I'd encourage you to be quite careful, not all of the potions will be as amenable. Do you want me to mix yours with the muggle chemist bottle as well? Or have just the regular potion?" She moves to sit on the stool again, maybe a little bit of a light headed quality hanging on as she looks at everything going on around them.

Lewis says "Well, I think that mixing the potion is fair. We didn't use a lot of the chemical, so a bottle should be able to spike lots of bottles at once." She warns him to be careful with what potions he uses it on "I'm only going to use it on the awareness and headache potions. Everything needs to be tested carefully." He starts to pack up and says "Well, I'll be on way now, I hope you have a very goodnight, Miss. Sorcha."

"I do as well." Sorcha says, "It shouldn't be terribly difficult." She nods, "Alright, we'll start off with those two first and see how well it comes together." She comes around the counter and nods towards the door to escort him out when he's collected his things, "It was good that you could come, Mr. Smith. I'm sure we'll speak again soon. Be careful going home, it can be a bit precarious some afternoons."

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