(1939-09-14) Disagreeable Options
Details for Disagreeable Options
Summary: Things get a little heated at the Three Broomsticks as options for dealing with Headmaster Flint's new policies are discussed.
Date: 1939-09-14
Location: The Three Broomsticks, Hogsmeade
Plot: Headmaster from Hell

Midafternoon in the Three Broomsticks bring a lighter than usual crowd. Sitting in the corner of the room, where he can see most everyone in the room as well as the door Gilbert is nursing a pint of dark ale and writing in a notebook with a Muggle ballpoint pen of all things. From time to time he stops to do one of two things, either sip from his pint glass or chew on the back of his pen, deep in thought.

Having vacation is good… Very good. Especially when you're told by your boss that you -have- to go on vacation or there will be a stern talking to. Thus it is that Hypatia finds herself off her beat and walking into the Three Broomsticks, out of uniform and running a finger through her wind-tangled hair. "A firewhiskey and a pint of stout, love," she can be overheard ordering as she sidles up to the bar.

Camilla is tricksy and enters from the back Inn area. The farm girl cleans up very nicely and she is wearing an autumn flora dress and her hair has been finger curled along her scalp and then set into loose natural waves to the middle of her back. A familiar wave is sent towards Tessa as she takes up a usual seat and holds up two fingers as she sets up a chair across from her and then looks towards the door herself.

Brandy is not as tricksy - she comes in through the front door, dresses as garishly as ever and with her usual bells jingling at her wrist. After a glance around the room, her eyes land on Camilla, and she smiles to the woman warmly - or at least as warmly as she can manage, these days. "Cami - how've you been, duck?" she greets the other woman with a friendly hug before slipping into a seat. "Wonder what they've got on special tonight…"

Gilbert looks up from his notebook as he hears a familiar voice and smiles slightly when he sees Hypatia. In a warm. well projected baritone that easily cuts through the chatter of the light crowd he calls out, "Well, if it is not Miss Hypatia Abbott herself. The lady's order can go on my tap, barkeep." Setting his notebook on the table he stands to pull out a chair for Hypatia in a silent invitation for her to join him.

Camilla raises up from her seat to return the hug. "Oh, hanging on by the edge of my nails. How about you sugar? I hope you don't mind that I ordered some whiskey. I think I remember that being a thing." She teases with a wink to Brandy. "So this is something, isn't it? Shame shame on that man."

Hypatia's eyebrows arch at a jaunty angle when a voice calls her name and offers to buy her drinks. The decidedly Greek-looking woman turns to lay an appraising look on Gilbert. Such a look it is too, top-to-bottom-to-top-again all ending in a playful smirk. She heads in his direction, dress swishing lightly under her short robes as she slips around Camilla and Brandy with a murmured 'excuse, please'. "You look as handsome as ever, Gilbert," she says in a whiskey-and-honey mezzo. Before she sits, she leans in to kiss the man's cheek in greeting. "Budge up and tell me what you've been doing with yourself."

Brandy slips into her seat after the hug, giving Camilla a wry smile. "It might be a thing, yes. Thank you." She lets out a sigh adding, "It's something, that's for sure, and I'd say you're being generous. Damn the man to hell," she asserts quietly, shaking her head. "But we can't just stand by and do nothing - can we?"

Gilbert returns the kiss with the nonchalance of someone that spends has spent a substantial amount of time in both France and Spain then pushes Hypatia's chair in before reclaiming his own, "A little bit of this and a little bit of that. Most recently trying to figure out a way to help all the Muggle-born at Hogwarts." he answers Hypatia. Then he takes a sip from his ale while he taps his notebook with his pen. After the pint comes down he adds, "And I think I may have found a way. At the moment I am working on the wording for a proposal and a call to open a new school of magic, specifically meant to provide Muggle-born with an option where they can go to get a true and complete education in Wizarding traditions, customs and in the proper and full use of their magical skills. Hopefully only as a temporary measure." As if he had merely suggested the start of a new brewery or a new restaurant he moves on to ask, "And what have you been up to lately, Tia?"

Camilla thanks the server and pays them after shifting about in her coin purse to rub the coins together so to speak. Then she blinks over at Gilbert overhearing his idea. "Or you know, we just put Hogwarts back the way it's supposed to be." She mutters towards Brandy, "Cause segregation has worked so well so far this year. I swear the extremes people try to go to." She picks up the glass of whiskey that was brought to toast with Brandy. "To getting Hogwarts back the way it should be."

Hypatia claims her seat (which has been so chivalrously pushed in for her by Gilbert) just in time for her drinks to arrive. When Gilbert begins to talk, she listens with the almost placid air of professionalism one would expect from a hit wizard. That is to say, she doesn't interrupt or interject; she just shoots her firewhiskey and turns the glass upside down on the table. "I see," she finally replies. There's a moment's pause. "Have you given thought to the logistics of the matter? Doubtless you'll be asked all these questions once people hear of your idea." She runs her fingers through her sable hair once more. "It would give your idea more credence were you to have expert educators lined up and talking points distributed to various spokespersons." Her eyebrows arch again. "And will this be coming from Gilbert Sullivan the man or Gilbert Sullivan the power player of the Preservation Society?"

"Drink to that," Brandy agrees, clinking glasses, and knocking back a large swig. "As soon as the Muggleborns walk out those doors, we've handed the purists exactly what they want. The whole movement'll lose… urgency. It'll lay fallow. The only way I see it working is if we can get most of the staff to move to the new school, but even then…" She looks dubious, shaking her head slightly. "Knew you'd be on board to fight this thing, Cami. There's just some constants in the world."

Gilbert leans a little bit to the side to get a clearer view of Camilla and Brandy's table. Before responding to them thought, he answers Hypatia. "It would come from me. Although I do not know that there would be a difference to many in the general public." Then, with his best, friendliest smile and projecting enough to be heard clearly at the other table he says, "Oh, this would have nothing to do with segregation and everything to do with breaking a monopoly. /Anyone/ that wanted a full, unabridged education, imparted equally to all students at the school would be welcome to join. And if any of the current Hogwarts faculty that has proven to be open minded and unbiased in their teaching would like to join us they would be most welcome as well." Standing slightly to motion to the two remaining chair at his table he says, "But I would welcome dissenting opinions, to better guide my train of though if the two of you would like to join us. If anything it would at least make the conversation more comfortable."

Camilla grins and takes a drink after clinking her glass with Brandy. "Well I always felt blessed for being born into the wizarding world and went to Hogwarts, because there wasn't this sort of idiotic notion that someone is better than another for something as natural as birth. I guess we were spoiled in our golden time there. But something is rotten I tell you. Someone ends up dead on the board of governors and Flint gets made Headmaster. I've set Bannon on that, though really he'll only be able to do anything if Dark Magic was involved. But have you seen those buttons and fliers going around. Majijugend Means Murder, it is true that that poor boy died at their hands in Norway to the killing curse. It just gives me the willies to think that Flint's teaching those poor impressionable /children/ the Dark Arts behind closed doors. This isn't going to last I'm sure. The truth will come out and Flint will be looking for a professorship in Durmstrange. Run right out of our home if I have it my way."

Camilla leans over and gives Gilbert a 'do you mind?' expression. "Monopoly? What in Merlin's name is that man going on about?" She goes ahead and points to the free space at their table. "Hogwarts needs to be turned back into Hogwarts, simple as that. Those kids deserve the same school we all went to. One man let power go to his head, that doesn't mean a whole other school should be made. It means he needs to be removed from power and Dumbledore finally get made Headmaster."

"I dare say people will assume it's the latter," Hypatia says in reference to Gil's identity. "Look, I'll be honest with you, Bertie. I'm of half a mind to just launch an investigation into this Headmaster's everything: finances, background, associates… That's not up to me though. It seems that were we able to get enough support from the ministry, we could make Flint's life every bit as much of the hell that he's inflicting on those poor kids…" Suddenly, she leans back with another cheeky smirk. "Oh, Gil," she says in a tone that suggests a complete topic change. "Remind me to have you over for dinner one night. My grandmother brought me back some ouzo from their summer in the Old Country.." There's a wicked twinkle in her eyes as she speaks of the ouzo. "And, of course, I'll use it to make som saganaki. Perhaps some spanakopita, keftiko… maybe even some soutzoukakia smyrneika? If you're lucky, I'll make some galaktoboureko." Dark brown eyes flicker over Camilla, but she says nothing. Yet.

"One of my kids sent me a button," Brandy confirms. "It's concerning." She lets out a sigh, before confiding, "I'm tired, Cami. This past month has been pure hell, but no time to rest now." Looking towards Gilbert, Brandy gestures a bit dismissively with her hand. "No, I think we're good over here. And your Utopian ideal only works if the halfblood and pureblood parents send their kids to your school. Which they won't, if Hogwarts keeps the better staff."

She returns her attention to Camilla, nodding in agreement. "Dumbledore - I'd like to see that, myself. But in the meantime… I've got a mess of a logistical nightmare to figure out. And that little lion of yours - Mr. Proudmore - I'm worried he'll make it all the more difficult."

Gilbert chuckles slightly at the reaction of Camilla and Brandy. Lifting his pint to them he says, "Well, I truly hope that Mr. Flint can be ousted from his seat as soon as possible. But he was appointed by politicians for political gain. And the logical supposition was that at the moment he was chosen his proclivities were well know. Perhaps he has gone further than expected, been more obvious and heavy handed than planned, but I highly doubt that the whole purpose of appointing him was not just this, the subjugation and minimization of Muggle-born students. Pray that the politicians that put him in his seat in the first place are scared enough of the repercussions of his mistakes to betray him now or a new school /will/ be needed." Sitting back in his seat he takes a sip from his pint and modulates his voice back to a conversational volume as he returns to his conversation with Hypatia, "That sounds lovely, Tia. But you know that I do not speak Greek, so I only know part of what you are offering me."

Hypatia laughs softly. "Utopia.. A Greek word, meaning nowhere." She drums her fingers on the table, nails clicking slightly as she looks the other two women over in silence. "I have full faith that this situation at Hogwarts will be solved sooner than later," she finally says, dark eyes sweeping over the women. "However, in lieu of any obvious advancement, it does little harm to plan for all exigencies. Nor does it do any harm to be polite, lady. A smile an' a joke, and suddenly the job's not half so bad, yah?" She looks sidelong at Gilbert, and she smirks faintly. "Perhaps I'm offering you a night you would not forget?" she asks. She's teasing, right? "Or perhaps I'm just whispering sweet nothings that really are nothing more than menu ideas. I shall not tell you, Bertie, which one is correct. You will have to find that out for yourself."

Camilla tilts her head at the mention of little lion. "Little Lion?" She does seem puzzled by the expression. "What about Lucian? I know he's upset. But he has every right to be. I'm sure he's feeling guilty as all get out. But he is a good boy, he's just been through a lot and Josie sent out a cry for help and he'll do anything for her. But we're all doing what we can. He did go too far and he's going to pay for it. There's enough backlash from what he's done that I bet anyone that had anything to do with him getting where he's gotten to are taking three big steps back and lifting their hands up and will let him hang out to dry." She lifts up her glass again, "Here's to dirty laundry on the line! May it flap off in the breeze and flutter all the way up Grindelwald's pale back side!" Cami isn't a drinker and usually she's so very zen and calm. But whiskey and all this trouble have stirred her up like a momma dragon defending her eggs.

"He's a Gryff, yeah? Proudmore and all." And he sure had the roar. Brandy lifts her glass and takes a drink before adding, "I think we can wish Grindelwald worse than that." She smirks with amusement, but then lets out a sigh. "I'm trying to work out a tutoring plan for the kids for Hogsmeade weekends," she confides, lowering her voice. "Looking for locations, tutors… Trying to figure out how to get the most hours in with the kids, without making it obvious that every Muggleborn in the school - third year and up at least - have gone to Hogsmeade and just disappeared from the streets. Without having them all troop into one location, all at once, and stay for hours. I'm not made for this sort of subterfuge, but if Flint wants he has the power to rescind Hogsmeade privileges for all the Muggleborns. "And Mister Proudmore is… determined and rash - worryingly so. You need to look out for him, Cami."

Gilbert goes back to writing in his notebook, taking notes on the conversation that has just taken place, Camilla and Brandy's reactions, and how to possibly phrase things to minimize similar reactions from other people as best possible. After a few moments of writing he returns his attention to his table companion. With an arched eyebrow and a smirk he says, "You do remember I am almost 20 years your senior, right? Then again, I have never been found wanting when challenge to solve a puzzle or investigate a riddle." He winks as he finishes off with, "But I will confess that I recognize a couple of those as typical Greek dishes so I have a fairly good idea of what you are offering."

Camilla shakes her head, "Well he's certainly not any House now that he's graduated, but he was a Slytherin. Like I said, he's got a lot to be angry about. But he's a good young man. I can look out for him all I like, but don't think I have any sort of power to knock him off course. He's his own man and he's going to do what he's going to do. I've learned that much. I can at least host extra credit for Care of Magical Creatures for those students that are taking it, or would have taken it. They'd have two of the best tutors if they swung by the Farm here and there. I must be careful though, because I've got Lucian's father breathing down my neck and trying to take the farm from me. So if I step out of line he could snatch me right off of my own land and finally get his way. But this isn't going to last too much longer, it can't."

"A snake? Really?" Brandy muses thoughtfully. "Huh." She finishes off her drink before offering, "Maybe remind the b- fellow of the risk to your farm. Last I talked to him, he was dead set on letting the kids - all of them, even the third through fifths - use their wants to practice spells. In the back of a tent no less." She shakes her head. "It'll make matters worse. He wouldn't listen to me, but if Miss Rashley hasn't talked some sense into him, maybe you can." She lets out a sigh. "And if you can help me brainstorm more trustworthy names to use as tutors - you know what a lousy student I was - and help me iron out plans for a tutoring schedule that'll be as unnoticeable as possible… I need another set of eyes on this."

Camilla takes another drink, "I'm sure you caught him in a moment. He doesn't like being told what to do. Lucian and Morgana would certainly be on that list. I can do my best as mentioned to help anyone that was going to take care of Magical Creatures. The farm is a hide-out of the 'Pirates' if they want it, Flint can't do anything about my ward inviting over friends to her home. I also really don't think this will last beyond one more Hogsmeade weekend either. It's caused too much backlash, it will resolve itself. Even a month is easy enough to catch up on once everything is back to normal. People really should just focus their energy on getting Hogwarts back and not dividing things up even more. Hogwarts is the best place for our kids to be, so long as it's the Hogwarts as Hogwarts was meant to be. You know, it might not be a bad idea to pitch going back to the way the Founders ran it. Each Head of House is a Headmaster on a council. That way they can balance each other out and not fall into this sort of Dictatorship again."

"Well, beyond getting every parent I can think of to write a letter to the Board of Governors, and raising as much of a fuss as we can within the Ministry, I'm not sure what else I can do to set things right. Have you seen that book my kids are 'learning' from? It's vile. Teaching them to be nothing more than staff. Washing windows, polishing silver, shining shoes and scrubbing clothes." She grips her empty cup tightly, staring down at it. "Might not be a bad idea, though. A council of Headmasters. I can't see any of them - Dumbledore, Mopsus, Beery or Slughorn - standing for this nonsense."

Camilla licks her lips and gestures with her whiskey glass, "Well I think that Slughorn is happy enough to keep his house as Dippet allowed it. Which isn't prime, and goes by the ancient prejudice of its founder. But at least it's not really doing any harm to the rest of the students. There is going to be inter-house disputes and rivalry no matter what or who in what house has purer blood than another. But let's at least get it back to the way it was and then we can maybe influence Slughorn to consider letting the sorting hat sort with looser restrictions. We both know Slughorn is no purist. He's an equal opportunist. If he can get in on the next best thing he'll schmooze with anyone of any blood purity. But with things tilting as they are, I also bet you we'll be finding a lot more Slytherin in his Club more than usual. He likes to tip the scales in his favor after all."

"Oh, can you imagine the sour-grapes - halfsies and Muggleborns in Slytherin? The Purists would throw a fit, and I would dearly love to see that. Maybe they'd leave and try to start their own school." Brandy smirks at the idea. "But that's to worry about in the future. For now… I'm still determined to give this tutoring thing a try. Even if you're right and this is over before we see the Hogsmeade weekend after this… well. It'll still buoy them, I think. We've got the main NEWTs covered I think, as far as tutors go. Charms, Transfig, Potions, Defense Against the Dark Arts. Care of Magical Creatures is in the bag - obviously. There's no need to worry about Muggle Studies. …you did Herbology, didn't you?" Brandy asks uncertainly. "I don't think I have anyone for the A's - Astrology, Arithmancy, Ancient Runes… And there's Divination and History, too."

Camilla points across the street, well really to that wall and window where the Lovegood Fortune-telling shop is. "Well you've got Astronomy and Divination across the street there. It wouldn't seem odd for students to actually go in a shop on Hogsmeade weekend. We all did Herbology, I know I run farm and should probably do better in it. But not a forte I manage, the Hands do the herbologing. I'm dreadful with numbers or I might have long vested Proudmore in his sabotage attempts. Defense Against the Dark Arts…Bannon comes to mind, also for Arithmancy and Ancient Runes…"

"Bannon'd be welcome. We have Rena as well. If he does Arithmancy and Ancient Runes then he's definitely welcome. And we have three places the kids can go too without too much suspicion - my place, yours and the Lovegoods." Brandy lets out a sigh, then a smile. "See - feeling a little saner about this mess, already. And it's not all that many kids… Less then twenty, when you takes out the first and seconds. It can practically be private tutoring sessions."

Camilla takes another drink, the final drink of her whiskey before lamenting, "I am so glad those kids have you Brandy. Their parents are in over their heads when it comes to going against the likes of Flint and some don't even know what's even going on if they aren't Vetted. I wish I had Malfoy or Proudmore money, I'd throw so much of it at you you'd be one big bruise." She starts to rise and lean over for a hug of farewell. "You let me know."

Camilla's words, if anything, seem to make Brandy look tired all over again. She'd give almost anything not to have this on her shoulders. She returns the hug, adding, "I'll keep you in the loop. I'm leaving Care of Magical Creatures entirely in your hands. I trust you know roughly what they're learning each year… But we'll set this to rights. So they can get back to their real classes. Thanks for coming."

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