(1939-09-29) O Mischief, Mischief! Wherefore Art Thou Mischief?
Details for O Mischief, Mischief! Wherefore Art Thou Mischief?
Summary: Asmund Fawley and Madeline Evans bump into each other on the 4th floor balcony, each while doing their own studying. Some coaching happens, some concern is shown, and some friendship forms. A greater understanding is formed between two students.
Date: 1939-09-29
Location: 4th floor balcony
Related:
Characters
MadelineAsmund

Monday, that most dreaded of foes to students and the workforce alike. While most may seem less-than-enthusiastic about the first day back to their working life after a weekend, some, like Asmund, feel refreshed by it. Having recently finished his evening meal, the young Hufflepuff Prefect seems to have taken up roost on the fourth floor balcony, finding a relaxing view of the castle grounds below. The Fawley boy leans against the railing on his elbows, watching the miniscule people move about below and the wind rolling over the mysterious lake and sun-bathed forest. Upon the nearby table, his bookbag lies forgotten, as if perhaps he had intended for some private studying. Leaning on the rail, wind blowing his sandy hair about, Asmund hums a tune to himself and smiles serenely at the view.

As Asmund leans forward and watches the people below - he's in for a surprise. Coming from above - silent except for the flapping of wings is a bird. A large raven, as a matter of fact, which attempts to land on the back of his head, let out a loud 'CAW!' and then bounce back up, flapping to land on the railing a few feet over. Once he's on the railing, the bird errupts into cackling. Insane, evil cackling that is clearly the immitation of human laughter - though it sounds like the laughter of a criminal mastermind in some exagerated radio drama.

Reacting much as one might expect a person to react, Asmund flails uselessly. In fact, if it weren't for the rail, he very well would have met a short end at the grounds below. As it standsor sits, as the case isAsmund ends up on his tender end, lightly bumping his head against the stone rail and looking it up at the raven. "Cor!" he exclaims, rubbing the small bump forming on the back of his head. Any anger one might typically show, however, is replaced by his accute love of animals. "Well, look at you, you sneaky little chap!" He places a hand on the rail to steadily pull himself up, "Gave me quite the fright. Where did you come from?" His tone is almost like that of someone addressing a particularly adorable child.

"GOOOOOO GRYFFINDOR!" the bird shouts, at the end of its insane cackling, before laughing a little bit more, as if highly amused by her own joke. The laughing, the talking… as distorted as it sounds, it does sound somehow… feminine. A girl must be teaching the bird, and therefore probably owns. A girl Gryffindor. A girl Gryffindor such as-

"Mischief! Are you causing trouble again?" a cheerful voice exclaims as Madeline bounces onto the balcony. "Awww… you were waiting for me! What a goooood bird. Good bird, Mischief!"

"Mischief!" the bird croaks happily, before gobbling down a piece of dried meat that Madeline offers over.

Somehow, Asmund doesn't seem entirely surprised at a raven that appears to support Gryffindor Quidditch. With a hearty chuckle, he glances over at the approaching Gryffindor and says, "'Mischief'? Good name for…her?" He looks the raven over, then back to the girl, "Gave me quite the fright." He turns to lean his hip against the railing, "Lovely to see you again…Madeline, right?"

"Did she? I'm sorry. She's a little brat. Huh, Mischief?" Madeline ruffles the feathers on her bird's neck, then briefly wrestles with the raven's beak. "But she's real smart. And, yup, I'm Madeline. And you were… umm…" She wrinkles her brown in thought. There's only twelve prefects, Maddie! How hard can it be? "Falco? You showed me the thing! In the library." At least she remembers that. "Thanks again."

"Fawley. Asmund Fawley." The Prefect smirks as he watches her with the bird. "Oh, really, no need to thank me. Anything for a fellow student, you know," He looks slightly proud at the thanks, though. "Did you get a chance to practice at all? Practice makes perfect, you know. At least, that is what father tell me."

"Oh! Right! Fawley!" Madeline corrects herself, before adding, "Not very much. I was gonna come practice out here - I thought I could try it on Mischief here." She lets out a giggle. "Wouldn't she be cute with a bubble on her head?"

"A raven that could go underwater? The Merfolk would flee before the end of the week." Asmund cracks a joking smile and gingerly reaches a hand towards the bird, canting his head slightly to the side with a curious expression on his face. "You can practice on me if you like," he says to Maddie, though still watching Mischief, "I can't imagine it could go terribly badly for me if you were to get it wrong."

"If you tell her 'up' in a firm voice, she'll jump up," Madeline offers helpfully, before handing off a bit of dried meat she pulls out of her robes. Mischief follows the food with one eye, tilting her head as it goes from Maddie's hand, to Asmund's. "Really?" she adds eagerly, before pulling her wand out. "Spiranabulla, right?" she asks, getting the second accent wrong. "And I do it like this?" she gestures with her wand.

Asmund accepts the bit of meat, half-stepping closer to the bird as he's unsure if she'll spook. He extends his hand to feed her the snack and then gently tries to pet her with one finger behind the head. "Spi-/ra/-na-/bu/-la," he corrects, still watching the bird with a fascinated smile on his face, "How long have you had her?" he asks over his shoulders, his eyes not quite leaving the corvid before him. With some reluctance, he breaks his eyes away to examine her wand movements, "Yes, the looks correct, though maybe relax the joints a bit more. Make it smooth, like the you are creating." Asmund stands squarely in front of one of the padded benches…just in case, right?

The bird doesn' spook - but she does twist her head out from under Asmund's fingers, and peck at him chastizingly. Madeline lets out a giggle. "She doesn't let other folks pet her," she explains. "I've had her since last spring - she was a birthday gift. Isn't she great?"

She gestures with the wand again, trying to keep her joints loose, and then tries to spell word again. "Spiranabulla…" she murmurs. Then, deciding she's ready, she levels her wand on Asmund. "Spiranabulla!"

Pulling his fingers back from the raven, Asmund nods, "She has bounderies, quite alright." He braces himself for the moment of the spell, only wincing slightly. When nothing happens, he frowns slightly, stepping closer and leaning his head in towards Maddie. "Let me hear the incantation again, please." He listens intently to make sure she's said it correctly, though he was sure she had just a moment ago.

"Spiranabulla," Madeline repeats, emphasizing the second and fourth syllabols. "I'll get it," she insists, her voice determined. "It just takes a few tries, sometimes. You know? But I'm really pretty good at charms. It's just transfigurations that's hard."

The Hufflepuff nods encouragingly, "Exactly! Like we say in Hufflepuff, The difference between 'triumph' and 'try' is a little extra 'umph'!" He backs away to the bench again and says, "Transfiguration has always come easily enough to me. Potions has been a bit more tricky, so I doubt I'll be allowed to continue it next year. I would really like to, though." Once he's checked his position to the bench, he squares off against the Gryffindor once more, "Alright, shall we try again?"

Madeline giggles. "That's a silly thing to say. I like it! Try and triumph." She grins at Asmund, then nods eagerly. "You know. I'd help you with potions if I could." Without pausing she adds, "Spiranabulla!" gesturing with her wand once more.

As a bubble of Bubble-Head Charm charms its way around his head, Asmund lets out a happy, "He-hey! That's the ticket, Madeline!" And rushes closer, bent slightly to give her a pat on the arm, much as an overly proud sibling might. "You know, I believe you got that spell quicker than I did. I seem to recall a few hours of late night practice in the common room before I could properly cast it." He looks over at Mischief, "Not bad, eh?"

Madeline beams proudly, bouncing on her toes - but restrains herself from crying 'I did it!' If the wrong someone were to overhear her… "I'm good at charms! I told you!" she says proudly. "Oh, gosh, that did go well, didn't it?" She then turns her attention on Mischief, pointing with her wand. "You're next," she adds. The bird - who had been preening - pauses in its motions to look up at her.

"I don't recall if the spell is supposed to be any different for animals…. I can't imagine it is. Not like potions, where they are specifically tailored to the subject." Asmund seems unsure, but shrugs and gestures in a 'give it a try and we'll see' sort of way. He sits down on the bench to watch, and asks her a question. The tone with which he speaks is casual, but to the skilled observer, they may note a slight trepidition hanging in the way he asks, "So, have you had a chance to practice with the other Muggle-Born students?"

Madeline is facing off with Mischief, her wand leveled at the bird when Asmund speaks. "The other, umm…?" she asks, glancing at the boy, then at her bird again. "Oh, no, of course not. I mean - a bunch of us, practicing together? How'd that look? I mean, sure, some of us practice in dueling club together, but other than that, we'd get in aaaaaall sorts of trouble, and then Pringle would hang us by our toes, and shove things under our finger nails, and maybe even use red hot pokers before making us clean eeeeeevery privy in the entire school and shine all the shoes! And we wouldn't want that.

"Spiranabulla!"

"Ah, good. I'm glad to hear that you see that and did not have to learn the hard way." Asmund frowns slightly, and sighs as he pushes himself to stand up. He approaches where the bird stands on the railing, a little bubble around her head. "Well, look at that. It worked out just splendidly." He seems slightly less enthused this time, perhaps a little apprehensive, before he quietly says, "Madeline, make sure you are very careful about who sees you practicing. Even studying. I worry about the well-being of Muggle-Born students here; indeed, in Magical Europe even." One of his hands raises to idly scratch at his chin, as if seeing something in his head as his eyes look out over the golden sunset-lit grounds of Hogwarts.

With a short sigh he shakes himself slightly, his friendly smile returning, and asks, "Were there any other spells you had wanted to learn? Or anything else you would like assistance with, that they are neglecting to teach you?"

"I know," Madeline says soberly. "That's why…" she nods her head out into the hall, "I usually have a look out." Indeed. Not far from the balcony, and sitting in the hall against one wall is a fellow Gryffindor, who seems to be reading from a text book - though he glances up whenever he hears footsteps. "The balcony's one of my favorite spots to practice. No paintings, no one can see me from below, and if I'm using a look out - I only have to worry about ghosts! And even that not very much."

While they're talking, Mischief is trying - unsuccessfully - to peck at the bubble around her head. "Umm. Do you know the tripping jinx?" she asks abruptly.

Asmund glances towards the look out, giving a satisfied nod, "Good, good. I'm glad to see you taking precautions." He watches Mischief for a moment, obviously entertained by her antics, "No, I am afraid I don't know that one. I've never been much of a duelist, myself. If you can't find anyone who does, I could make inquiries. Maybe learn it myself and show you. Merlin knows the school isn't going to teach you."

Madeline nods her head. "Well. I'm working on Impedimenta. And I'm trying to get Patil to teach me the one that can make someone's mouth fill up with bubbles. And I wanna do the tripping one, and the tongue tier and the leg-locker. And… umm… Maybe that's it," she muses.

Asmund 'hmm's for a moment in thought, "I could show you Jelly-Legs, I suppose. It seems silly, like something kids would use in the corridors, but imagine trying to chase someone with your legs wobbling to-and-fro." He chuckles and resumes his thought, "Oh! I suppose I could try to show you the Stunning Spell, though it may be a bit advanced, perhaps."

"Stunning spell?" Madeline seems interested in this, focusing her full attention on Asmund. "That one sounds like a really good one! Does it knock them out?" she asks eagerly.

"I mean, we haven't actually been taught it yet, but I imagine that one will come soon. They'll probably want us to practice it and use it throughout the year." Asmund nods quickly, "Yes, it renders a subject unconcious. From what I hear, it even knocks them about a bit. Apparently, the D.M.L.E. use it quite a bit. I imagine that would give a shock to anyone wishing to harm you."

"Then I'll ask Rena this weekend!" Madeline says eagerly. "She can help me practice the incantation, and do a little wandwork, too." She beams eagerly at Asmund. "That sounds like a good one to learn!"

The Hufflepuff Prefect folds his hands behind his back and beams a smile at the younger girl, "There are lots and lots of spells that would prove useful. I'll make inquiries to my uncle. I know that I can trust him to be discreet. I seem to recall hearing about one that ties people up, used by Hitwizards. Though, that might be a very advanced spell, as I imagine fumbling it might lead to, er, a bit of airway blockage." Asmund blanches at the idea, but continues, "If you'd like, I could also write to father. He's an officer in the RAF and might have some suggestions on simple Muggle tools you could keep for your safety, that don't require much in the way of training?"

"Well. But my dad was in the military in the Great War, and he'd know too, wouldn't he?" Madeline muses thoughtfully. "I know how to use a gun - we go game shooting, you see - but I'd never want to use that against a person. Not if I could do a leg-locker or a tripping-jinx or something instead. Or a stunning spell!"

"Oh my, no! I didn't mean-" Asmund seems rather taken aback at the idea of taking another's life, "I just meant something like a sap." The boy seems to ponder for a moment, and then brings a hand forward to let out a quiet snap, "Now I remember, that rope curse, we learned it last year. I'm afraid I wasn't very good at it, but I can hit the books and see if I can't master it, then show it to you?" Though Asmund doesn't say it, it's quite obvious to most that know him that his gentle nature has proven something of a hinderance in any sort of dueling.

"Though, there are plenty of completely benign spells that would work. Have you ever heard of the Jelly-Fingers Curse?" A sly smirk plays across his face as he explains, "Imagine someone trying to curse you with their fingers wiggling about." He holds his hands out and wiggles his digets as if tickling someone in front of him, "Mighty tricky to hold a wand that way, eh?"

"I'm not sure that conking someone in the head's much better'n shooting 'em in the foot," Madeline remarks - strangely aware of 'saps' for such a young girl. …she reads odd stories. "We're learning Jelly-Fingers in Defense Against the Dark Arts this year," she adds. "It sounds like a fun spell. I tried it on Adam once - it didn't work. I must have got it wrong, somehow."

Asmund, still smirking, says, "I am rather fond of the various Jelly- Curses. They stop whatever is bothering you, but in a fun, non-violent way. I could easily show you that one." He rocks on the balls of his feet and adds, "I've also just thought, I could lend you some of my old textbooks. There are probably all manner of spells in there that would help out in a pinch, even if they weren't designed for self-defense! Such as the Antler Jinx, or Feather-Light Charm."

Madeline burst into a fit of giggles, while poor Mischief continues her futile attempt to get at the bubble around her head. "I got antlers once last yead. I got a picture with them, too! It was great!" the girl exclaims.

"I imagine plenty of the best duelists have used unconventional curses and charms to get the upper hand." Fawley seems to think for a moment before adding, "If you're really good with Potions, you might want to consider preparing some as well. Perhaps carrying them with you. You never know what might prove useful."

"Maybe," Madeline muses, a thoughtful look on her features. "I mean… maybe I could find one like what happened at the sweets shop. If it made a gas that made people /sleep/, or something. And I if I used the bubble-head…" But are there any potions like that? "Most potions you have to drink, though."

Asmund nods in agreement, "I don't think they work like regular chemicals do, I think you need to actually drink them as part of the magic. Otherwise there would be more potions that you rubbed into the skin to cure afflictions, rather than drink them, I should think." He knits his brow in thought and looks over at where the sun has sunk below the horizon. "It's getting late. We don't want to be caught out after hours. It would be especially poor thanks to your faithful lookout." With a chuckle he says, "If it were within my ability as a Prefect, I would award him points for loyalty, even if it is a virtue of my own House."

Scooping up his bag, the Hufflepuff pauses and says to Madeline, "I will look through my textbooks. I'm afraid that I'm really not much of a duelist, but I will see what I can find. I may yet be able to help with a few spells. Someone ought to look out for you around here."

"Gryffindors can be pretty good at loyalty, too," Madeline insists firmly, and with a smile. "We stand up for each other. That's what lions go! ROAR!" She bounces on her toes, and grins at her bubble-headed bird, before looking back at Asmund again. "Thanks for all the help, umm, Fal- err, Fawley."

With a kind smile, Asmund give a very flourishing bow, and quite a proper one at that. He straightens up and makes for the door, "I mean it, though, Evans. Don't want to get caught out of bed. I'd hate to have to report you for trying to /learn/. In a /school/, no less!" With a sardonic chuckle, he heads for the door, smiling pleasantly at the lookout.

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