(1939-09-06) Scholastics and Philosophies
Details for Scholastics and Philosophies
Summary: Anthony and Miranda try some extra practice for their N.E.W.T. level Charms course but end up discussing things other than magical locks.
Date: September 6, 1939
Location: Training Grounds, Hogwarts

A small group of N.E.W.T. students has gathered in the training grounds on this warm Saturday to do a little hands-on practice. Miranda has gathered a handful of sitting pillows and an equal number of small, wooden boxes, which she's arranged in a circle, having already chosen a pillow covered in a paisley pattern for herself while she idly levitates her chosen box, turning it slowly end over end.

Anthony comes and flumps down randomly on a pillow, "I don't know why they didn't teach this all when we've had thieves in the dorms!"

"I'd imagine because it's easy to get it wrong," Miranda answers cheerfully, as her box lands on the ground with a gentle thud. "Imagine if you got the charm wrong… pointed at the wrong thing… what if you accidentally locked something that should never be locked?" Not that there's a whole lot of concern in her voice. She just smiles over at Anthony, then settles herself more comfortably on her pillow while twirling her wand between her fingers.

Anthony says, "I suppose so. It was just a bit of a nuisance, really. Although thee girls were more troubled by it, I think." He picks up one of the boxes, "Now, it's a different version against each unlocking spell?"

"'Obstructus Impervium' versus 'Emancipare'," Miranda answers as she shakes out the wrist of her wand hand momentarily. "Though I suppose we could use the normal unlocking spell, just to make sure the anti-unlocking one worked," she adds in a musing tone as she looks up at Anthony. She pushes back the sleeves of her robes and returns her wand to her right hand.

Anthony says, "That's what I thought. It's been a while since I've used Alohomora."

Miranda concentrates on her box for a couple seconds, then swishes her wand before pointing at it, calling out, "Obstructus Impervium!" She then picks it up and tries to physically open it, smiling when she is unable. She then tries the standard spell, pointing at it again with, "Alohomora!" Still nothing, though. Beaming at the other N.E.W.T. students, she twirls her wand slightly and waits to see how they're doing.

Anthony is managing to open his. "Blast. It's a tough spell. Still, practice practice practice." And he patiently begins again from scratch.

Miranda again turns to concentrate on her now sealed box, and with another wave of her wand, she points it at the box and says, "Emancipare!" She reaches forward and, sure enough, the lid of the box opens as if it had never been locked. A true Hufflepuff to her core, however, there is no gloating, no crowing. Just a simple smile as she enjoys her success for a moment.

Anthony is patiently repeating the steps. He must, from the steady persistance, have been a narrow miss for a Hufflepuff himself. "Obstructus Impervium." There's a smooth swish of the wand. Perhaps not quite right?

Miranda begins the process of locking and unlocking her box repeatedly. This is, after all, a practice session. After a few more rounds of this, however, she lets the box sit undisturbed in front of her. "I read that if you do it really well, even Emancipare won't work until the first charm starts to wear off," she shares idly, and begins using the tip of her wand instead to lift and lower the lid of the box a couple times, just for something different. She then glances over at Anthony as she sits up straighter. "Did you hear the news coming from Europe?"

Anthony gives a little approving nod, as his opening spell fails to work, "Got it." And then he looks over to Miranda, and nods, "Yes. Yes, I'm afraid I did. I don't know what one can do about it, unfortunately."

Miranda folds her hands in her lap while she studies the box, its lid left open, showing its plain, wooden interior. "About as much as we can do here at school, I suppose," she murmurs quietly, then physically flips the lid closed with the tip of her wand before leaning back on her palms and staring up at the sky. "The American president said they're staying out of the war. No big surprise there, I suppose." There is a beat before she glanes to Anthony and asks, "If the Germans dropped bombs here, even if they can't see us, do you think the bombs could find us?"

Anthony says, "I don't see why not. A bomb isn't sentient to need to see. But honestly, we're in the middle of nowhere. Why come here? I suspect the spells would keep the flying machines away. I mean, have you ever seen one of the muggle flying machines here?" He gives a little shrug, "I honestly don't keep hugely up on Muggle affairs. So, I'm afraid I don't know whether this American President would be expected to stay out or not."

Miranda winces at Anthony's answer, though she doesn't look surprised at it, confirming with a quiet, "That's what I was afraid of," following the first bit. The rest of it doesn't seem to reassure her all that much. "Terror. Destruction. Do they need more reasons than that?" She slouches slightly as she again folds her hands in her lap, wand held loosely between them. "I read too much, I suppose. At least, what the 'Prophet' tells us."

Anthony says, "Well, I imagine a shielding charm would act to deflect a falling object as well as a thrown one. It's worth experimenting with, I suppose."

Miranda nods thoughtfully, though there is a small frown that accompanies it. She traces the borders of her wooden box lid with her wand. No magic. Just fidgeting. "It's kind of a shame we have to keep what we do a secret from the Muggles. Over the summer holiday, I heard a man saying it's just how the Muggles cull each other, but it seems to me, the more destructive they get, the less discriminating that destruction."

Anthony says, "Probably. But there's an awful lot of them. And not that many of us! Have you walked around Muggle London? There's no end to the place! And all the people. It's simply unthinkable… when you consider how they are with each other, how they'd be with us!"

"Maybe," Miranda replies in a quiet voice, still sounding unconvinced. With a shake of her head, she tries the anti-unlocking charm again, but lacking concentration, nothing happens, aside from making the hinges feel rusted. "I just dislike feeling helpless. I mean… for starters, there should be more of us here practicing," she continues, waving at the scant number in the training grounds. "I can't even help people here. Seems silly to think I could do anything beyond Hogwarts."

Anthony says, after a long moments consideration, "There is nothing stopping you practicing with people who are not in your classes, you know. And sometimes I think aloud when I'm going back over my classroom notes. I'm told it can be a little disturbing, because other people can hear it, and you know… very rude."

It takes a moment for Miranda to catch onto Anthony's full meaning, but when she does, she gives him one of her warm, beaming grins. "There is that," she agrees quietly. "I just dislike what's happening. I feel like Flint is trying to create his own little ghetto inside Hogwarts, and…" And her mouth shuts quickly as she stares at her box. Too much? By the tense way she holds her wand, she probably thinks so. She waves her wand at her box again, though nothing seems to happen. Going through the motions.

Anthony says neutrally, "Well, it's awfully bad scholarship to commit to a position which is not supported by evidence." Ah. A Ravenclaw indeed. "And as there are some excellent half blood wizards and witches." … tactful, Tony…. "… it is clear there is not a one to one relationship between Blood Purity and magical power."

Miranda stares at Anthony with much the same concentration she'd been using on the wooden box minutes before. In the end, however, she takes a deep breath and shakes her head as she looks away again, keeping whatever intense thought she'd just had to herself. Again, she half-heartedly points her wand at the box, but all that happens is a loosening of the lid. After a couple minutes of less than successful practice, she shrugs her shoulders uncomfortably. "The part I dislike most is that we're not allowed to even hint at different views. I've learned a lot over the past six years from half-bloods and muggle-borns alike!" she exclaims in frustration, and this time when she points her wand at the box, it ignites, leaving her to scramble for a moment to put out the flames and repair the box.

Anthony casually casts an ice spell onto the flames, "Exactly! It's precisely the sort of bad scholarship which will make us a laughing stock!"

Miranda relaxes more when the flames are extinguished by Anthony's, then she takes a deep breath before muttering, "Reparo," and pointing her wand, after which she spends some time flicking away the leftover soot with a second mutter of, "Tergeo." After this, she just sets her wand on the ground next to her paisley-covered pillow. "I just don't understand how they even got there," she says. "I mean… look how learned Professor Flint is, and he's the one doing all this!" As far as she knows, of course.

Anthony says, "Leaving aside influence, politics, and so on?" He shrugs, "He is a truly great Runitician. One of the greatest of our age. That doesn't mean he's in this century."

The mention of politics and the rest just makes Miranda shift uncomfortably again, though she laughs softly at Anthony's last statement, nodding slightly. "I suppose so," she agrees quietly, followed by a small, crooked smile. "Perhaps this will go back to the old saying, 'What doesn't kill us makes us stronger.'"

Anthony says, "Or stranger." There's a faint twitch of his lips. "It boils down, I suppose, to a war between self interest and principles. I don't imagine the Headmaster can expel _everyone_ who disagrees with him. And there's always Beaubaxton's if I were to get in trouble, I suppose. My French is up to it, although I don't have a fashionable accent."

Talk of expelling brings a wince from Miranda, and she nervously picks up her wand again, frowning at its smooth surface of holly for a moment. "I was pretty content with the happy medium of the two," she confesses. "It's just…" She looks up at Anthony again, imploringly. "It's just, this is a school of witchcraft and wizardry. Not ideals. Ideals change from person to person. I feel like we're being made to fit into a certain shape, and whatever doesn't fit gets cut off."

Anthony says, "Well, you can make anything chopped off grow back, you know. If you're prepared to accept a bit of pain in the process."

"Depends on how it's done," Miranda counters, but for whatever reason, that brings spots of colour to her cheeks. She doesn't explain, however. Instead, she takes a deep breath, then waves her wand at her box, muttering, "Evanesco." It shakes slightly but remains where it is.

Anthony gives a faint wry smile, "Well, you know. Figuratively, anyway. But there can be a scar. And I think we're all going to be scarred by this. However it works out."

Miranda nods her agreement as she continues to stare at her box. It takes another couple tries before she gets the box to vanish, at which point she gets to her feet and begins smoothing out her robes. "I just hope there's no permanent damage," she says in a quiet voice before making her pillow disappear. She'll just leave the rest to Anthony, lucky guy. "Thank you so much for joining in the practice, Rowle," she says with a friendly, nodding grin. "I'm going to go see if anyone knows when the next Book Club meeting is before I dive into my Herbology studies."

Anthony says, "I'm thinking of starting a languages club, too. If you're interested, I mean."

Miranda laughs softly before she shakes her head. "You Ravenclaws, always stretching the mind even further," she comments, sounding like a compliment. "Mine only stretches so far, which is why the Hat likely went with Hufflepuff in the end." She waggles her fingers in farewell, then, and heads back into the castle.

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