(1939-08-29) A Scolding in Belgravia
Details for A Scolding in Belgravia
Summary: Once Penzington Prince learns of his niece's rebellious behavior from her governess, he goes to have a little chat with her. With a bit of legilimency, the two eventually come to an understanding.
Date: August 29, 1939
Location: The Prince Estate in Belgravia
Related: Tea Readings and Friends

Even by the time the governess gained an audience with her employer, Penzington Prince, she was still seething about her unruly charge. She explains how Samira had snuck off in the throng of shoppers when her governess had suggested stopping for a nice, quiet cup of tea. She had spent an hour hunting for the girl until she found her in the last place she looked: the tea shop.
"Unless her behavior changes, I guarantee she will be expelled from Hogwarts within a week. The loss of her mother has made the girl obstinate and defiant. There is only so much that I can do. She needs the firm hand of a parent, sir. You must meet with her."

The Prince residence in Belgravia is an estate with a high, dense hedge that keeps muggles out. It has also kept Samira from sneaking off into muggle London. She spends most of her time under the watchful eye of her governess. But, when she receives respite from her lessons and almost endless scolding, Samira takes to exploring the seemingly endless halls and rooms. She has found her way to the library, where she climbs to the tallest rung of the ladder to select a book almost out of reach. Laying across one of the velvet armchairs by the fire, she immerses herself in the tale of a pot-bellied wizard that just wants a decent haircut.

"That is not how we sit in chairs in this house young lady." Comes the stern voice of her actual guardian. Penzington Prince is not a man to suffer fools, or being nagged by governesses who suffer fools. With a wave of his wand the chair cushion under her pops up with enough force to bump her upwards and remove all cozy settled in she might have achieved. The wand is then tapped on his thigh as he frowns at her. "Do you know who I am Samira?"

Samira blinks and glances up at the unexpected voice. The servants and house-elves almost never speak when they bring her meals. Only her harpy of a governess ever disturbs her. With a sharp squeak, she bounces up into a proper sitting position. Setting the book aside, she stands up. "Yes, sir. You are my uncle." Despite her governess' tales, the girl seems to know how to behave when she wants to. But, there is no trace of meek politeness in her manner. She stands with her head slightly tilted, her eyes fixed on her uncle's regal and almost-familiar features.

As his niece seems to be behaving well enough Penzington slides his wand into his inner robe pocket. "That is our relation, yes. But who am I? Are you aware of what it is that do for a profession?" A single eyebrow lofts up to such a point it could slice through the tension in the room.

Samira's dark gaze flits to the wand as he tucks it away. Glancing back up to meet his eyes, she answers, "My father told me you work for the Ministry of Magic." Despite the tension, Samira's stance shows no hint of apprehension.

Penzington strolls over to the fireplace and cutting quite the dignified silhouette leans upon his elbow which is lain on the mantle. "I am Chief of the Department of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes. Do you have any idea what that means Samira?"

The diminutive girl with such long, wild curls stands in sharp contrast to the regal figure her uncle cuts. Gazing up at his silhouette, she considers his question before responding. "Yes. You are command all those who respond to accidents and catastrophes. You keep our world secret from muggles and bring order to chaos." Although her governess might think she doesn't pay attention, it would seem that she has absorbed a fair amount from her endless lessons.

Penzington gives a nod to her answer, "Very good. Yes. Now, you are a smart young lady so you must know that this makes me a man who appreciates rules and those that follow them. So I am sure that you can imagine just what sort of regard I have for those that break the rules. Not to mention force my hand and whom take my very valuable time away from my work. Hmm? Now, I do so hope that this is not going to be a common occurrence young lady. You have too much potential and you wouldn't wish it squashed with delinquent propensity. Hmm? Now, you are Samira Prince. Do so behave like a girl of your intellect and standing is expected to behave. This is my home, if you wish it to be your home, I expect order Samira, not chaos. Are we understood."

Samira considers her uncle and his words for a moment in silence. "I understand you, uncle. But, you do not seem to understand me. I am not a delinquent, nor do I cause trouble for the simple sake of chaos." Her diction is perfect and the precocious child's manner is regal to the point of defiance in the face of superior authority. "I am the daughter of two ancient and noble lineages. I do not obey commands, I consider requests. Regardless of what is expected of me, I /am/ acting as a girl of my intellect and standing."

Penzington lifts his chin. "Absconding purposefully away from your governess and causing her distress which comes to my door and interrupts my schedule is never to be done again. If you wish some leisure time, then you will ask for some. You will obey my rules while you are in my house, just as you will obey Hogwarts rules while you are there. No more excuses, a formal apology will be given to your governess. Only when this apology is done and you've proven to me that you do respect your elders that have gone out of their way to house you and provide you the very best in your stay here will we discuss getting you some leisure time arranged. Only a matter of days before we will be free of your Governess, let us make the best of it."

Samira tilts her head and folds her arms when he mentions her elders going out of their way to house her. "I will make no apology. Did she not tell you where she found me? I was waiting at Cafe Tasseo. That was where she had we would go next. Both of you were so quick to assume I snuck off. Could I not have simply gotten lost in the crowd and made my way to where I thought she would find me?"

The truth is not so simple. She didn't just sneak off to make her Governess angry, nor did she just accidentally get lost. Not that Samira claims that's what happened- she is simply pointing out that neither of them even thought to give her the benefit of the doubt and went strait to scolding her. He will find a lost, frightened girl hidden behind that defiant mask. Unfamiliar faces and voices all speaking a language that she has been drilled in to perfection, but never grown at ease with. Were she to stop even for a moment to reflect, she would break down into tears.

That afternoon in Diagon Alley, with her harpy of a governess' hand firmly on her shoulder to steer her through the crowd, Samira couldn't take it anymore. She slipped out from under the hand and stole with catlike grace into the crowd. She ran through the streets until ducking into a dark and quiet alley. There she stood panting until the rebellious fire in her heart calmed. She knew her governess would be looking for her and furious, which she didn't care much about.

Rather than continue to hide, she decided to go and wait for her at the tea shop she'd been going on about. No doubt, that would be the last place she'd look for her, which did make Samira feel smugly amused. However, she would find her there faster than if Samira went looking for her from shop to shop.

Penzington stares into Samira's eyes for a good long while. Silent, gaze boring into her soul and thoughts. He does not seem to enjoy the route his niece is taking. He is no parent, this is exactly his first act as a guardian of any kind. People lie, especially teenagers trying to get out of trouble. He silent, simply staring at her. Without saying a word he conveys that her complaint has fallen on deaf ears and he does not care for the little game she is playing. The expression on his face is plain. He knows. Like a silent gargoyle perched on the mantle, he watches her, ever knowing and lets her twist on that sharp point of his eyebrow that once again arches upwards.

Samira doesn't blink, unknowingly giving him perfect access to her mind. Nor does she squirm or fidget at the long silence. At last, she sighs and sits down, glancing away. "I didn't claim that I /did/ just get lost… I simply point out your quick assumption. Perhaps if she did not order and scold me with each breath she drew, I would not have felt so compelled to have a moment's peace from her. And simply asking for 'leisure' time from her as you call it would have worked unless you instructed her that I was to be allowed it." Samira glances up at him with an arched brow. "Would you have given such instructions had I not done this?"

Penzington allows her the time to explain herself and he actually seems to sympathize about how insufferable that governess is. When she comes home from Christmas she will more than likely find herself with a new one. The silence seems to work for him, so he keeps to it and simply bows his bald head to affirm that if she hadn't ditched her governess he would be more than amiable with arranging something for her to do for recreation. "Perhaps if you prove yourself trustworthy, we can arrange for you to have a Christmas Party here for your friends that you will make. This is not a prison and I am not a warden, unless I am forced to be. I greatly hope that we can live peaceably together, Samira."

Samira studies her uncle for a time in silence. At last, she nods in acknowledgement. "You came to speak with me. That is more than my father ever had time for. He told my tutors long ago to stop pestering him and to deal with me themselves." She leans forward to rest her folded forearms arms on her knees. "I appreciate your time. I did not expect to cause /you/ trouble." And this is the truth. The girl never expected her uncle to actually hear of her conduct, or to care when he did.

The dapper Chief of MAC smoothly rights up and nods. "Everything you do reflects back upon me and our family name. My brother, much like myself have very important duties. I am sure that he felt that if he was to respond to your rebellions to gain attention you would learn that these behaviors would continue. I am glad that we have come to such an understanding that it will not happen again. I do not appreciate the good mum's complaints taking away from my duties and what little free time I have. If you wish for a better life here, then I highly suggest that you do not try to garner my attention with bad behavior. Or you will face much as you have in the past. If you have a request or a question for me, you may compile me a letter if I am not available. Or you may relay it through your Governess who is instructed to do so. I know this is difficult for you Samira, but rebellion and disrespect is not the way to better your situation. I have faith that you will not disappoint me. I will see you at super if something does not come up at work."

Something will come up. It always does. Samira rests back once more in her high-backed armchair. Although she doubts her behavior, good or bad, will bring much change, she nods with respect. "I understand, uncle. I will endeavor not to bring shame to our family name."

Penzington crisply and with great hope says, "Excellent." Before he strolls out of the room and no doubt goes back to the office.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License