(1939-08-15) Some Late Lunchers
Details for Some Late Lunchers
Summary: After the lunch rush settles down, some stragglers find their way to Hind's Fish & Chips to eat.
Date: 15 August, 1939
Location: Hind's Fish & Chips, Waterloo, London

Hind's Fish & Chips is still considered a fledgling business by many, having only been opened twenty years ago, but it's become a popular mainstay in Waterloo. The shop front is an eye-catching, bright yellow, with large windows that open the shop up for natural light as well as giving passers by a view into the tidy interior. In fair weather the door is propped open, allowing the scent of fried fish and sweet puddings to waft temptingly out. There are only three tables, as most orders are for take away, but they are well polished and gleaming, each ringed by four wooden chairs. Cream coloured walls lend a brightness to the small restaurant that is needed, for lack of artificial light, and are bare but for one picture of King George. The floor is plain black and white tiles.

The service counter is at the back of the shop, one end dominated by a brand new metal cash register. Behind the counter is a window into the kitchen, where orders are placed when complete. Near to the service counter is an easeled chalkboard, where each day's offerings are listed. While they always include fish, sides and desserts, the selections vary depending on what is available that day. Everything is hand made by the family, and the fish is fresh every morning from a local fishmonger. The batter for the fried fish is lightly seasoned, adding to the flavour rather than detracting from the fish itself, the chips are twice-fried to be crunchy on the outside and fluffy inside, and the mushy peas are suitably mushy.

The menu today, handwritten very carefully so as to be legible, lists cod and haddock as the fish, and the afters of raspberry jam sponge and apple crumble, both with custard. Katie is out from behind the counter, humming a popular muggle tune as she wipes down one of the two empty tables. At the third table is a quartet that is slightly oddly dressed, enough so that a wizard would likely know them as such. They're finishing up their lunch before heading back to the ministry, and Katie pauses by them.

"Mind the time now, that you aren't late getting back. Can't have our best getting into trouble." The words are friendly and familiar, the young woman comfortable with the regular customers. Flat shoes scuff lightly as she goes back to the counter to put the rag up into the window through to the kitchen.

Stepping through an open door, a man dressed very much like the rest of the muggles pulls his hat from his head. The one hand that pushes at the dark blond strands is meant to push them back down in smooth array, but actually manages to do the opposite, mussing the hair further. "Good afternoon, Miss Hind," he greets, bending slightly at the waist as he rests his hat on one hand. "I hope you are well?" As usual, his pronunciation is measured and very correctly enunciated.

"Fawley," one of the quartet calls out. "How's that piece you've been inspecting for the museum?" There's a bit of a nudge among the four as they finish up their meal.

Katie turns, her broad smile coming even before she fully sees Michais, recognizing the voice. "Mister Fawley," she returns brightly. "I am, ta, an' you as well?" The words aren't as crisp as the man's, the dialect of the east end bringing an almost musical lilt to her speech. She tacks on, "Will yeh be havin' the usual, cod, chips, mushy peas an' raspberry sponge?" Absently, she smooths her hands over the white apron that covers her flowered dress. It's got short sleeves, modestly cut at neckline and hem, and is well cared for but obviously not anything in the latest fashion.

"Troublesome," Michais quirks a bit of humor to the man questioning him. "If I didn't know better, I would think it was cursed." Turning back to Katie, he responds to the broad smile with a quieter version of his own. "Yes, please, Miss Hind. I am doing well, but my assistant insisted I take a break to eat." So, here he is. He doesn't appear tired, but there is a slight distance to his gaze as if part of his mind is elsewhere as he orders.

There's a slight narrowing of her gaze as she notes the words, and as she turns to jot the order down on a pad Katie calls back to him, "You'll be stayin' here then? Keep me company when this lot shift out." Her smile flashes to the ministry workers, gathering themselves up to do just that, before her attention drops back to the notepad. She finishes scribbling, but it's clear that was only a technicality as she turns to call through to the kitchen in back, "Da! Do us up a plate for Mister Fawley?" Somewhat muffled from the back comes a question in return, in a pleasant baritone, "Cod, chips, peas and sponge?" They do remember their regulars. "Spot on, ta!" Katie calls back and turns to move back to the counter. She picks up silverware and a napkin and moves to place it on the table she had just cleaned. "Cuppa tea with that?" Stepping back, she gives Michais plenty of room to come and sit.

He might not have been thinking of staying, but rather than offer offense, he simply bows slightly at the waist again, nodding to the departing Ministry workers. The conversation between Katie and her father draws another quiet smile of gratitude for their memory of his preference. "Yes, please," he answers as he sits, setting his hat on the table. "Those Egyptian artifacts are so coated in dust and sand, they dry out my throat."

Katie can't help a little bit of a smirk as her summation was correct. Michais was sent out for a break and would have returned immediately with his food in hand, had she not more or less cornered him into staying. There's no hesitation before she moves again, crossing to a kettle of hot water and filling a smaller pot, putting that over the fire to heat to boiling. "What sort of things have yeh found? Treasures and mummies? I've heard of curses when someone goes into a tomb, it's in films." She chatters easily, pouring some water from a pitcher into a glass and walking it over to Michais' table. It's a small shop, so nothing is really more than a few steps. "There's somethin' for the dryness then, tea'll be done in a tick."

The chance to talk about his work brings a little more focus to his gaze as he looks over to watch the making of the tea. "They are jars, called canopic jars, buried with mummies. It was part of the mummification process, the ancient Egyptians would put the organs of the pharaohs in jars, so that they could fill the body with herbs that would preserve it." He doesn't seem to think about the fact that talking of such things might not be appropriate where people could be eating. Luckily, no one is eating. "And, yes. Legend has it that they also cursed the tombs so that the pharaohs would remain undisturbed."

The young woman is clearly listening as she brews up the tea, looking up to Michas often as he explains. Katie wrinkles her nose at talk of organs, but doesn't interrupt. "D'yeh have the mummy what goes with the jars?" she asks curiously. "I'd curse yeh too, if yeh scattered all my bits about t'the four corners." There's light humor in her tone still, and as she brings a teapot, cup, and usual accoutrements over to set on the table she makes a show of looking intently at the wizard's face. "Are yeh feelin' alright then?" A smile comes immediately, with the dismissal, "But there's no such thing as curses." Not in her world, anyway. They're just stories told to scare people.

There's a light in Michais's eyes, not there often, but at the idea of someone who may actually be interested, it gleams in the usually unconnected hazel eyes. "I feel fine, thank you. I have to agree that I'd be tempted to do the same in the Pharaoh's place." He prepares his tea, precisely the right amount of milk and honey, then takes a sip. "Of course, most will tell you that curses only have power if you believe in them, but I have found, that most use curses as a matter of convenience." An approving nod for the tea and he continues. "An archaeologist that brings back a mummy, and then sinks his money into another risky dig and loses it, will say it was because he was cursed by the first mummy." He winks, "of course it has nothing to do with the fact that the enterprise was questionable at best from the beginning."

Graham has been working most of the day and missed breakfast and now the proper lunch time at least. He must eat though he's learned he cant go forever on will power alone. The young man is wearing his work robes, but has removed his badge as she steps in he's been seen here likely fairly often since its close to his workplace. The auror pushes the door open and steps in taking a glance around a moment to see how busy it is but he's missed the lunch rush which is good.

Katie grins cheerfully at Michais, "That's just human nature, that. Surely there's always somethin' t'blame if somethin' goes sideways." Her eyes shift as Graham comes through the open doorway, and she calls a greeting across the small room to him. "Afternoon, Mister Cohen. Alright then?" Her words are casual since he's another familiar face, and she absently reaches a hand up to push her hair behind her ear. The hand then flaps toward the chalkboard menu, handwritten very carefully so as to be legible, which lists cod and haddock as the fish, and the afters of raspberry jam sponge and apple crumble, both with custard. "See anything t'tickle yer fancy t'day?"

Brandy's morning went longer than planned - a panicked family, worried about how their child's school year is going to go, asking about pulling their kid out of Hogwarts… Talking people down off a ledge is exhausting. But for now, she's succeeded.

Dressed in garish, muggle-style clothes, and paying little attention to her surroundings, Brandy is on auto pilot as she pushes her way into the shop. She needs some lunch - and to pick up something for Shiraz and Campari, who're still stuck minding Thomas' shop.

The young man offers a pleasant smile to Katie "Ah hello, uh alright skipped breakfast and lunch until now, the special looks good though. If it's not too much a trouble. How are you? Hope the lunch rush wasn't too bad?" Graham asks taking a moment to glance around he spots Michais though he doesn't know him well he'll nod and turning back as the door opens he gives a nod to Brandy as she enters as well. He will move to find a place to sit near the group.

Michais gives a nod. "That it is," he agrees. Then the shop admits another customer, and a little of his animation falls away. The staid shop-keeper, artifacts expert returns as he dips his head in a greeting to the auror.

"Not 'alf bad," Katie says to Graham. "Seems as if a few new folks find us every day." Speaking of new folks, the redhead's eyes shift as Brandy enters shortly after Graham, and there's another friendly greeting called out. "Afternoon, ma'am, welcome t'Hind's. Th'fresh fish an' afters are listed on the board, just a tick an' I'll be right back out wi'yeh." She moves away from Michais' table, giving the man a warm smile first, and slips behind the counter, calling Graham's order back, a man's voice answering, "Aye, Bug, on it."

As if in exchange for the new order, her father passes over Michais' meal, the fish and chips steaming from the fryer, the mushy peas a bright green, and the raspberry jam sponge a sweet addition. There are salt and vinegar already on each freshly wiped table, and Katie sets everything down just so before she steps back. "Just as yeh like it, Mister Fawley."

"Can I get a cod, and a raspberry jam sponge?" Brandy requests, after a few moments studying the menu. "And then when I'm done - I'll take another order of cod and haddock each, and the raspberry sponge and apple crumb to take with me." Why bother to figure out what your siblings would prefer, when you could just get a bit of everything? "Thanks," she adds warmly, before finally glancing around the room. Her gaze lands on Graham, and she gives him a smile tinged with surprised. "Cohen - hello."

Graham sits lightly but looks to the server as she speaks he gives another smile "Can call me Graham if you'd like?" he offers to her after though since he is in a bit now that he's discovered the place and all. He wonders how many strange people come into this place and what they think about them but he'll look back "Hey Sweetwater." he returns the words though it seems this is the place to be today.

Settling the napkin in his lap, Michais looks at the set of his plate, the angle of the fish, and the space between his meal and the sweet. Apparently, everything is in its proper place, because he gives a quiet smile to Katie. "Thank you, Miss Hind. It is just as I like it." Reaching for the vinegar, he shakes a bit over his chips, and then sprinkles some salt. Lifting his knife and fork, he starts with the tip of his cod, not seeming to listen to the conversation of the two newcomers.

There's a pleased air to Katie's smile at the approval from Michais, and she gives him a moment's peace to eat as her eyes shift to Graham. "Graham. Yeh'll call me Katie then." Then in turn, she nods to Brandy, "Aye, Miss, won't be but a bit." She goes to the counter again, moving easily in the space, her steps just a soft shuffle. That's in contrast to her voice, which is louder when she calls the new order back, but still with a lilting quality from her accent and generally pleasant tone. The confirmation is returned, and Katie's attention is back on the chippy's guests. She doesn't move to insert herself back into conversation for the moment, holding back politely so Michais can eat and the two that know each other can have a chat if they like.

Brandy smiles at Katie as the order is accepted, then glances back towards Graham, some hesitation on her features. After a moment, she sighs and pulls out a seat, seating herself next to Graham without invitation. "I apologize for getting cross with you."

"Of course, Katie. Good to meet you properly." The auror will say easily to her after she speaks though he turns back as he's spoken to by Brandy but he gives a shake of his head "Its not your fault, trust me im not happy with how all of that played out but its not over quite yet still working on it." Graham says trying to keep up hopes though quite hard to do so. He is still wearing that purple flower however so he's not given up.

The cod and chips are cut precisely and disappear at a steady, but unhurried pace, from Michais's plate. He raises one eyebrow as Katie's voice raises, but it's not something he isn't used to, just the break in the quieter conversations gains his attention. The mashed peas are disappearing, as well… almost in exact proportions to the other food.

A little bell dings and Katie turns to collect Graham's food from the window through to the kitchen, a brief pause to make sure it's all there before she takes it to where he sits with Brandy. She's not so exact in putting it in front of the young man as she had been for Michais. "Tuck in then, Graham," she says before her attention shifts to Brandy. "Da's got yer first order just about ready."

Katie looks over, checking on Michais, before she retrieves a large teakettle and two cups. Returning to the table of two, each has a cup set down, then filled, and there is already honey, sugar, and cream on each table setting. A few steps take her to offer to refill Michais' cup as well. "Care for more?"

"Thank you," Brandy answers Katie with a smile. She takes the tea when it's delivered, allowing a bit of honey to drizzle in, her gaze on her cup. "Right," she answers Graham. "I haven't heard anything, though. Hasn't there been any progress? Any news at all?"

Graham will look up at the plate being set "Cheers. Looks great." he says enthusiastically not realizing really how hungry he was until now. He will take a few bites though still trying to follow along. He sighs over to the other sitting "I was removed from the case. I'm only getting bits and pieces now." he says a tad vaguely given he has to be.

There's a slight clearing of throat from Michais as Brandy begins pressing Graham for details. Although he doesn't look to Katie, so maybe it is just a bit of food caught on the way down. He takes a sip of tea, glancing over to the auror, and then he raises the cup towards the chip-shop girl with a smile. "Yes, please."

There's a brief frown on Katie's face as Michais makes a hrumphy sound, concern that eases when he raises his cup with a smile. Immediately her face brightens, and his cup is topped off. There's no sign that she's paying even the slightest bit of attention to the conversation between Brandy and Graham. With only a brief pause, she's returning with Brandy's meal, again setting everything down with a casual efficiency. "Da said he'd keep an eye out, t'mind yer take-away so it's hot when yer ready t'go."

"Shiraz 'n Campari'll appreciate that, I'm sure. Thank you," Brandy answers, giving the woman a smile. She starts sprinkling vinegar on her food, as she turns her attention to Graham, a faint frown creasing her features. She doesn't peer phased by Michais' throat clearing. "If you hear of any progress… you'll let me know, won't you?" she asks. "I've sent him letters, but… it's hard to even know what to write."

"I will if im able I can promise that much." Graham says though he turns towards Michais at the clearing of the throat and cant help but chuckle. He knows the rules and laws about the other world. The young man looks up to Katie after another few bites "Food is top notch to be sure." he compliments easily as he takes a few more bites and a drink after that.

There's a nod with a wide smile for Brandy, and before she moves away again, Katie turns the smile on Graham. "Ta, Graham. Mum an' Da will be pleased t'hear. Call out if yeh need anythin', I'll just leave yeh to it." As she passes Michais there's another concerned look, but he seems to be back to happily, if very methodically, eating. The young redhead busies herself behind the counter, humming softly as she tidies everything up.

"Thank you, Graham," Brandy responds. She gives him a smile, but for the moment it's a sad one. She pokes at her fish with her fork seeming lost in thought for a few moments, before taking another bite of her food.

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