(1939-10-26) (uni)Tea Party Talk
Details for (uni)Tea Party Talk
Summary: Although they have seen each other in passing at one Unity Party event or another, Regulus Black and Rhyeline Diderot meet at last. After making each other's acquaintance, Regulus gently extends a hand of friendship, which Rhyeline tentatively accepts. Upon Inspector Peregrine Urquart's arrival, Rhyeline introduces each to the other. Although Regulus must soon leave, an even more prominent proponent of unification policies soon arrives. Cassius Malfoy himself joins Peregrine and Rhyeline at their table and the three talk politics. Following Peregrine's departure, Cassius discusses the encounter with Rhyeline a bit further.
Date: Sunday, October 26th, 1939
Location: Cafe Tasseo
Plot: unity

Rhyeline takes a single spoonful of sugar for her coffee. Stirring slowly, she lifts her gaze to stare out the rain-dappled window. At this late hour, the opulent cafe is rather quiet. Most of its wealthy patrons have retuend home to their families. The spoon set upon the saucer, the little one pours but a splash of milk into her cup. Not far off, sitting at another table, a witch in her mid-thirties seems to be keeping a discreet eye on the girl.

The door opens, a breif gust of wind and rain following the man quickly in, before shutting with a soft 'click' as if it had never been open to begin with. Regulus takes the paper he'd been holding over his head and folds it delicately in his hands, giving his arms and jacket a quick shake in the doorway to rid it of the lingering drops. Some how, his hair still managed to look perfect. He glances up, eyes sweeping the cafe slowly yet thoughtfully, lingering momentarily on both women seated not too far away. Recogniztion dawns on the man but he dismisses it for the moment, instead busying himself with the idea of somewhat warm. He orders his tea standing, and eventually after some thought, makes his way over to where Rhyeline is seated, a quick glance given to the woman who watched her carefully, "Pardon my intrusion.. you're Rhyeline Diderot, correct?" His voice is soft and well spoken, politeness used in all the right places.

Rhyeline peeks over the brim of her cup to watch Regulus Black folding the newspaper and adjusting his charcoal grey suit. As his eyes drift across the cafe and settle upon her, the girl glances away out the window at once. The witch sitting not far from the girl watches Regulus as he approaches, but little Rhyeline seems quite interested in adjusting her coffee cup upon the china saucer. She glances up at Regulus through her lashes as he speaks to her. With a subtle nod, she murmurs, "Y-yes sir… And… you are- are Regulus Black… yes?" Her own voice is as soft as he might have always suspected. Her British accent is clear and delicate with the slightest hint of a French.

Regulus smiles warmly upon hearing her confirmation. "A pleasure to meet you Miss Rhyeline.. I've seen you for some time now, however I haven't yet gotten the chance to have a formal introduction. You have done a lot of work for our cause.. I respect that greatly." Regulus pauses, turning to accept his tea from the cafe employee, before turning back and curiously looking over her table, "Would you mind at all if I sat with you?" Her timidness added softness to his tone, as if he were talking to a flightly creature he didn't wish to startle and yet was facinated by. He waits for her answer, and assuming she says yes, gracefully settles in the chair across from her. He sips his tea, a soft pleased murmur escaping his lips, before he sets it slowly down upon the table allowing his gaze to once more settle on her.

Rhyeline's cheeks warm with a subtle blush at such praise for her work. "N-no, I- I… wouldn't mind… Please." Taking a sip of coffee, the girl hides behind her cup and watches him until he allows his gaze to settle upon her once more. She lowers her gaze and warms her hands against the sides of her cup. "You… you have also… done much to- to promote unification policies. You… always speak with- with such… eloquence."

The man smiles, and the smile actually reaches his eyes, which it hasn't done much of lately. Regulus chuckles softly, turning his attention to his tea in hopes of making her feel more comfortable in his presence. He didn't mean to have such a direct manner of approach but sometimes he had trouble be subtle with his attention. "Thank you. Years of practice, I promise you." He takes a slow sip of his tea once more, sitting in silence as he lets the warmness fill him. "I'm surprised Cassius does not have you working around the clock," he jests gently, allowing his gaze to fall upon her once more before flitting to the woman shadowing her not far away. It wasn't hard to see the constant glances she gave Rhyeline, and so he gives her a slight nod of his head in greeting, lips quirked slightly in not quite a smile nor a smirk, before returning his focus to the woman sitting directly across from him.

Rhyeline can't help but smile, even as her blush deepens, at Regulus' jest. However, when he seems to take notice of the woman sitting behind her, she lowers her gaze. The woman inclines her head, returning his greeting, and makes no secret of her supervision of their conversation, though she isn't quite close enough to overhear it. "Mm… my health… it does not permit me to- to work as- as much as I would like. But… but I do what- what I can."

Regulus nods his head slowly as she speaks, "So that would explain my not seeing you as often as when you first came into Cassius' employment," he questions tentatively, though it sounds more as if he's stating an observation to himself then having a conversation with anyone. His brows furrow slightly, concern evident on his features, "Well I do hope it is nothing serious and that you are taking care of yourself.. It would be a dreadful loss not to have your assistance with our upcoming endeavours." Regulus sips his tea, falling quiet once more as his own gaze drifts to the continueing rain pattering outside the window. He attempts to keep his main focus off of Rhyeline as much as he can without seeming rude, so as to help make her feel more comfortable and less of the center of the room.

Head slightly bowed, Rhyeline peeks up at Regulus through her lashes, watching as he makes such an effort not to focus on her. Such gentleness seems to lure the skittish creature out of her manner of such cautious reserve. Now, her young, dark gaze shines with a quiet curiosity. Nodding, she murmurs, "You are- are most kind. I… I have hope that… that I will be well… before long."

He returns his gaze to her with a confident smile, "Well, with how stubborn your employer is, and the vast connections at your disposal, I'm well assured that you my dear will be in tip top shape in no time." Regulus nods his head, as if the confirm his previous statement, and takes another long sip of his tea. Gaze thoughtfully lingers on his tea cup, a finger tapping its edge once then twice. He seems momentarily lost in thought, something that has been happening more times then not lately, before setting the cup down and focusing his attention once again upon Rhyeline. "Perhaps at our next get-together you would do us the honor of attending, as Cassius' guest as well as my own?"

Rhyeline listens with a rather shy, but soft smile as Regulus speaks with such a confident smile. She nods before taking a small sip of coffee, watching him from over the brim. At the request that follows, the little one turns her head slightly to the right as she looks up to him. "As… as your guest… as well? I… I'm not sure… what- what you mean…"

Regulus shrugs a shoulder, a motion he makes seem still elegant, before casually answering, "I would hope us to be friends, if not now perhaps one day. One can never have too many of those, right?" he questions curiously. He lifts the tea cup to his lips, sipping the now luke warm liquid until it's all gone, and sets the cup down with a soft 'tink'. His gaze flits to the woman on constant watch of the timid woman, before once more returning to her face. "I hope I did not make you uncomfortable in my offer. It was no my intention."

Peregrine steps into the familiar coffee shop, hanging his hat on a hatrack. He waves to the waitress, who says, "Oh, good day, Inspector! Your usual?" Peregrine answers, "Aye, thank you." and moves towards a table, catching the familiar one of the pair or trio of guardwitches and then the diminutive witch sitting with Regulus. He walks over and clears his throat in polite entree, then says, "Miss Diderot, I hope I'm not interrupting. How good to see you again."

Rhyeline shakes her head. "N-no… you- you didn't- didn't make me uncomfortable. I… I just… hadn't expected-" She pauses. As her cheeks grow rather warm, she bites her lower lip. "I… I would like very much to- to attend as your guest as- as well." The little one blinks and looks up as Peregrine clears his throat. With a soft, shy smile, the girl nods in greeting. "Hello, Inspector Urquart. It- it is good to- to see you… as well." Her dark gaze flits from Peregrine to Regulus. "Em… this is- is Inspector Urquart. And- and Inspector, this is- is Mister Regulus Black…" Her voice comes as little more than a soft murmur and, doubtless, it reaches no farther than their ears.

His gaze remains thoughtfully upon Rhyeline before a voice breaks into his thoughts and Regulus lets his gaze lift curiously to the man standing next to their table. He looked familiar, though Regulus had never met him one on one, at least that he could remember. There has been so many faces over the years, it's hard at times for Regulus to keep them all straight. A smile unfolds upon his features before he speaks, voice light yet still with that somewhat withdrawn and soft tone, "A pleasure Mr. Urquart.. Inspector I should say." His fingers stay along the side of his tea cup, regaurdless of it being empty; one finger tapping its side every once in awhile as if to a tune only he can hear.

Peregrine turns and nods, "Oh, Mr. Black. I've heard of you, you're with M.A.C., aren't you? Or is that another Black? There are so many of your family in the Ministry." The waitress arrives with his cup, leaving his usual sandwich on the other table. "I do apologize for interjecting. Miss Diderot and I seem to run into each other here quite frequently, though. Fortunately, the meetings are now more pleasant than shocking." He gives a little smile, and a glance and light wave in the direction of the guardwitch, if it's the same one he first met.

Rhyeline tries to hide her smile behind a hand, but her expressive eyes betray her mirth. Looking to Regulus, she explains in a soft murmur, "Inspector Urquart and I- we first met when- when he mistook my- my guard for- for one who was- was following me with… ill intent."

He 'ahhs' softly at Rhyeline's explination and chuckles, "Oh dear.. that can certainly make for an awkward encounter.. oh and yes, that is indeed me," he confirms of Peregrine's questioning if he was infact the Black who was with the M.A.C. Regulus can't help but smirk slightly, "That there is, us Blacks find the Ministry to be very accomodating to our needs," he chuckles. He taps the table once, attention shifting to Rhyeline once more, "I must be on my way. So much to do and yet so little time. A pleasure to finally meet and speak with you Miss. Diderot, and to meet you Inspector Urquart. Until we meet again." He gives Rhyeline a gentle smile before standing and unfolding his previously used newspaper. He stands, leaving his money for the tea on the table, and turns to make his way to the door, positioning his paper at the ready should the rain be any more then before. With a graceful extending of his arm, the door opens and Regulus is gone.

"The pleasure is mutual, Mr. Black. I'm sure that I will see you around the Ministry at some point." Peregrine says, with another nod. "And the Ministry is a fine place to work. I very much enjoy what I do, or I wouldn't still be doing it after 37 years or so." He chuckles a bit at Rhyeline, "It was an honest mistake, and fortunately I didn't hex her first and ask questions later, like some of my colleagues have been known to."

Rhyeline's dark gaze flits from Peregrine to Regulus, shining with a soft, shy mirth as she hides behind her cup of coffee. She takes a slow, silent sip. But, as Regulus prepares to leave, the little one lowers her cup to murmur, "I… it was- was a pleasure to- to speak with- with you as well… Thank you for- for joining me." Her gaze lingers upon him as he departs, but she soon peeks up at Peregrine, looking a bit self-conscious. "He… he is a- a member of the- the Unity Party…" she explains softly.

"Ah. So this was business?" Peregrine asks, as he takes his sandwich from the other table and invites himself into the vacated seat to keep her company. "I heard the part about you going somewhere as his guest."

"I… em… yes." Rhyeline's cheeks grow a bit warm as she peeks up at Peregrine. "There are… are formal events… on occasion. I- do not often attend, but- but he… em… yes."

"Ah, I see." Peregrine says, with a dour curve of his lip and a nod, "I don't go much for frippery myself. Or dates, as it happens. Still, Mr. Black is very handsome, by any reasonable estimation." He changes the subject, though, perhaps to spare her any further discussion of the issue at hand, and says, "How have you been, Miss? You seem to work very hard."

Rhyeline lowers her gaze and her subtle blush deepens noticeably. She stares down into her cup of coffee, warming her hands against its sides. "I… I have been well," she murmurs rather softly. Lifting her gaze, she adds, "I do what I can. All that I can. My work is- is important to me…" A light drizzle continues outside, dappling the windows. The hour is quite late and the opulent cafe is fairly quiet.

"Your work is certainly important. The cause of wizardborns and muggleborns is a noble one." Peregrine says, with a nod of agreement, sipping his tea and then putting the cup and saucer down so that he can take one of the small finger-sandiwches he ordered and take a bite.

"Yes… even if- if there was not such a- a looming shadow… it is important. But, now… with- with Grindelwald's influence growing on- on the continent… the need for- for such policies… to at least lay groundwork for- for what might happen should- should Grindelwald rend the veil before it- before its time… The need is so great." Rhyeline shakes her head, clinging tight to the coffee cup in her hands. "We… we cannot afford to- to waver and- and hesitate."

Peregrine looks grave, "I've read in some of the Muggle papers about what's going on in Europe. There is talk coming from Germany that would match our own supremacists perfectly - especially the ones who were trying to ruin Hogwarts. What a mess that was. Children fighting children."

Through the windows of the cafe, one might notice a man on the street attracting a small crowd, shaking hands and flashing smiles. A passer-by with a camera even manages a photo opportunity, capturing Cassius Malfoy greeting some of his supporters. Naturally, where there are supporters, there are also dissenters. A piece of thrown fruit is Vanished out of the air by a dark-haired man often seen with Cassius, though rarely noticed. As the guardwizard moves to attempt to deal with the man responsible for the lobbed produce, Cassius lifts a hand, staying the guard and quieting his supporters. He approaches the man, speaking calmly to him. Some words are exchanged, and even without hearing the conversation, one can see the tide shifting. The man seems less certain of his previous hatred of Malfoy, and as they part, all of the energy of his initial attack has deflated.
As Cassius steps into the cafe, bidding his supporters farewell, he takes a deep breath, commenting aloud, "Well, that was invigorating." He gives the hostess a warm greeting, and is promptly taken toward Rhyeline's table.

"Ah, but- but at least… at least that shadow has passed," murmurs Rhyeline with a soft smile, despite the heaviness of the subject. "There is hope. Perhaps… perhaps what happened at Hogwarts is- is a sign of- of changes to come…" The little one's voice fades away as she notices the small, gathering throng outside. Her hands tighten upon her cup as she catches sight of Cassius Malfoy standing amidst his supporters. She bites her lower lip, watching anxiously as the incident with the dissenter unfolds. But, by the time Cassius steps into the cafe, Rhyeline is looking to him with both profound shyness and admiration. "Good evening, Cassius…" she murmurs in the softest of tones. "This is- is Inspector Urquart."

Peregrine stands when Cassius approaches, nodding, "Yes, we've met. I was the investigating Inspector on the Snively matter a few years back. We worked together. A sad case, that." Perry offers his hand politely, "Good to see you again, Counselor. And pleased, after the display outside, that your robes are still clean. My nan would have boxed my lugs had I ever done such a thing. 'Use your words' is one of the first things we teach our bairns."

Cassius clasps Peregrine's hand in greeting. "It's good to see you again, Inspector. I was pleased to see your name attached to the file on the Magijugend contract case. Your sort of expertise is exactly what is needed in such delicate matters." Releasing Peregrine, he slips his hand into Rhyeline's, lifting in and bowing to kiss it chastely. "My dear, thank you for waiting for me. I'm so sorry that I've been so delayed." He slips into a seat at the table, setting down his snakeskin brief by his chair.

Rhyeline tilts her head as Cassius mentions Peregrine's involvement with the recent events at Hogwarts. But, Cassius rather distracts her as he lifts her hand to his lips. The chaste kiss deepens both her shyness and the warmth in her cheeks. "It… it is quite alright. I… Mister Regulus Black was- was just here… and… and then… Inspector Urquart was- was also kind enough to keep me company…"

"I can take very little credit, Mr. Malfoy. That was really Auror Odori's brief. And at least we didn't have anyone throwing hexes at us. As for delicacy…" A bit of a laugh, which sounds like it's an unused expression coming from him, more of a bark, "If I'd been a little more delicate about a few things, I'd have been Superintendent Urquart years ago." He nods to Rhyeline's tilt of her head, "Aye, Miss Diderot, I was there. First time in years and years, and under bad circumstances, too. Gervaise Flint looks like he had lost a galleon and founda knut in the best of times, and this was nae the best of times."

"Indeed, Auror Odori has handled the case brilliantly." Cassius's smile betrays a hint of a smirk, but only for a fleeting moment. "I thank you for keeping Rhyeline company, Inspector. Have I interrupted a conversation? Please don't let me derail anything." As a server approachs, he leans over for an aside to place an order for spiced pumpkin tea.

Rhyeline listens to Peregrine's explanation of his involvement at Hogwarts with keen interest. Her dark gaze flits to Cassius. With a soft smile, she murmurs, "Before the- the crowd gathered outside… we were speaking of this very subject… the events at Hogwarts, and- and what they might mean for the future. Inspector Urquart… he appreciates what- what unification policies may do for- for those who must live caught between both worlds." She looks to Peregrine and adds, "And… and soon, I- I would like very much to- to hear more about… about the events of that night… beyond what I- I have read so far."

Peregrine nods, "I was just saying how noble the work of making the Wizarding world more accepting of muggleborn witches and wizards, and of wizardborns in general, is. And I was comparing the events at Hogwarts to what's happening in Europe. Very dangerous, that kind of thought. Singling out certain groups because they are different from us."

Cassius arches an eyebrow with keen interest. "What Gervase Flint did to Hogwarts was tragic. But it makes this recent victory that much sweeter. My worry, though, is that the appointment of Albus Dumbledore will be seen as an acknowledgement of his politics. He fears Unity. Am I to take it, by your words, that you support Unity, Inspector? Forgive my conceit, but it would be a feather in my cap to count you among the party's number."

Rhyeline listens with a solemn expression as Peregrine likens the current conflict in wizarding society to the war unfolding between muggles. She has long since drawn the parallels as well. Bringing her coffee cup to her lips, she takes a long, slow sip and peeks from Cassius to Peregrine from behind it.

"I am a supporter of equality, Mr. Malfoy. Who your parents were has no bearing on how you cast a charm, raise a magical beast, brew a potion, or, in my case, catch a criminal. After that letter comes, and you get on the big red train to head north, what you do from there depends much more on you." Peregrine explains, before taking a sip of his tea. "There is - and always will be - a place in the wizarding world for those muggles who must know about us, who are parents or siblings of wizards and the like. Maybe someday, they will all be ready to see us as we truly are. I agree with you, that is a day to be worked towards, and yearned for."

"It may come sooner than anyone wishes, if Gellert Grindelwald has his way. But where he would rip the lid off of Secrecy, I would open it gently." Cassius sighs; a carefully crafted sound to demonstrate deep concern and the weary determination of a man battling for a noble cause. "But the Minister for Magic is doggedly opposed to even considering the idea. No matter how many of our predictions come to pass, no matter how great the threat to our world, she stubbornly shuts her eyes and tells our people to do the same. She'll continue to do it while bombs fall around us. What do you do when your leader shows an inability to act?"

Rhyeline tucks a loose wisp of a curl behind her ear as she looks from Cassius to Peregrine. "Her choice is a difficult one… It- it is easy to understand her hesitation… her fear of- of making the wrong choice. But… but if she hesitates too long… there will no longer be a choice."

"Gellert Grindelwald will not succeed. He cannot be permitted to." Peregrine says, with a sad nod, "To use magic to rule muggles would be… a perversion of everything we *should* stand for." Finishing his tea, and blots his lips and then says, "It has been, as always, a pleasure, but I'm afraid I must be getting back to work. Maybe if I'm lucky, I'll get that promotion before I retire." Most of the MLE expects he'll die at his desk before he retires, but that's not exactly the point. Peregrine stands, "Good luck, Mr. Malfoy. Minister Gambol hasn't stayed in office for as long as I've been a Hit Wizard by being a fool."

Cassius smiles gratefully to the server as his pumpkin tea is delivered. "I contend that Minister Gambol has hesitated too long. War has been declared. We might have helped steer the Muggles away from that course. But now it is too late. All we can do now is to try to end the conflict as quickly as possible. But we cannot do that until the veil is allowed to be pulled back. Especially not while also contending with Grindelwald." He rises with Peregrine, again offering his hand. "It was a pleasure, Inspector. I hope we'll get an opportunity to speak again soon. I would love to hear your thoughts on the Ministers…longevity." He smiles, chuckling.

Rhyeline remains seated as Peregrine rises. Her solemn expression gives way to a soft smile. "It… it was good to- to see you again… Inspector Urquart. Thank you for- for joining me."

"It was my pleasure, Miss Diderot." Peregrine says, as he shakes hands with Cassius, and then grins, a milimetric curl of his lip, "My political skills pale beside my investigatory ones, sir, and I am sure that you are much better suited to comment on the Minister. But she is a canny witch, that much is certain. She wasnae left behind the door when the wiles were handed out. But now you ken my feelings, and should you have need, I would be happy to call upon you."

"Wisdom comes in many forms, and is often the opposite of politics," Cassius jests. "I wish you a good evening, Mr. Urquart. Be well." He resumes his seat, again slipping his hand into Rhyeline's. "Are you hungry, my dear? Or will it just be tea?"

Rhyeline shifts her attention entirely to Cassius as he slips his hand into hers. Despite the shyness of her manner, her delicate hand tightens upon his. "I… I think… just tea. I am not… not so hungry." The slight creature seems as if she must never have much of an appetite. And no doubt, Cassius knows this well.

Cassius tilts her head at Rhyeline, his eyes briefly flickering to watch Peregrine go. "So, what do you make of him? Is his support genuine? He may downplay his politic acumen, but he's an accomplished Hit Wizard. I wasn't exaggerating when I said his backing would be a feather in the cap."

Rhyeline follows Cassius' gaze to Peregrine. "I… I have spoken to him before of- of the Unity Party. His support of our ideals is genuine. He… he is particularly concerned for the wellbeing of squibs. But… I suspect that through such a long career… he knows how dangerous politics can be. Like many… too many… he is cautious to act."

Cassius nods, stroking his chin with one hand, squeezing Rhyeline's with the other. "Then he'll make for an interesting case study. If we can galvanize him to feel the need for action, perhaps we'll learn something about how to do the same for others on the fence."

Rhyeline's dark gaze lingers on Cassius' hand upon hers. "I think… the recent events at Hogwarts have shown us that- that it will most likely take a true crises to stir those such as him to raise the call for action. And… I suspect that- that such a crises… it might not be far off."

"We shall see," Cassius muses. "Inspector Urquart doesn't strike me as so stubborn as the Minister. Perhaps all it will take is some logic that he has avoided thinking about in his aversion to politics. Still, a crisis might be exactly what we need to finally oust Gambol. With any luck, it will happen just in time for the new year." He chuckles, giving Rhyeline a wink. In politics, timing is everything.

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