(1939-12-21) Pick-Pockets on Leicester Square
Details for Pick-Pockets on Leicester Square
Summary: Upon a visit to Leicester Square Christmas Fair, Lara's purse is stolen and recovered by Levi.
Date: 21 December, 1939
Location: London, Leicester Square

Despite recent events and the unfortunate limitations of the blackout, the yearly Christmas fair is up and running on Leicester square. Around the central garden, a number of log cabins and stalls are selling Christmas items, food and hot drinks. Attractions include a carousel and a small ferry wheel on one side and a a modest event stage on the other side, which is currently deserted. It is afternoon, but still daytime, and Leicester square is packed with people, laughing and chatting and strolling between the stalls. Grey clouds are covering the sky and few snow flakes are falling now and then, but without sticking.

Lara is enjoying the peaceful atmosphere, walking between stalls, watching the items here and there. Her coat is plain as usual, but made from fine wool and kept very tidy. Her cheeks are pink from the cold, hands covered in thick gloves and on her head sits a woolen cap, strands of red hair being visible under its brim. Despite these measures, she is already shivering uncomfortably and shoots longing glances to the steaming drinks served at a stall further ahead.

Levi has been visiting with family since the break started, but upon hearing that the faire was still on he decided that would be something worth checking out. The young man is dressed warmly though he's good at blending in with his muggle-type clothes. He is looking at the people and the various activities either being setup or already going. He continues on though he sees a familire or he thinks is familure person moving about and he'll turn that direction speaking when he's close "What do you think of all this?" he'll say to get her attention.

Lara jumps as she hears a voice from close-by, then smiles warmly as she recognizes the speaker, teasing him with the hint of a courtsey. "Oh… hi! What? What I think?" She hesitates only a moment, then stretches out her arms, laughing, twirling once and almost bumping into an elderly man who throws her an annoyed glance. "I feel sad for all the pure-bloods, of course, who don't know what they miss by frowning at the Muggle world." Still laughing, she adds. "I didn't expect to meet any fellow students today. What brings you here?"

The seventh year looks appologetic for startling her but grins after a moment returning her courtsey with a small bow at the waist. Levi will looks to the muggle man a moment before back to his fellow student, but he's smiling now "That is about how you should feel. This is amazing and they are missing out, just so they can be wrong and stubborn." he chuckles a bit he will catch up to walk beside the other. "My parents had to work and being stuck inside wasnt working out. How about yourself?"

"Well, to tell the truth, I'm here with my sister today." She glances around over her shoulder quickly, and, not spotting her elder sister, sighs in relief. "I am 16 now, and my mother apparently believes I still need a watchdog. But it is not as bad, in fact, I quite enjoy her company, and today I think I was just the pretense for her to come here and meet some of her fellow students." Lara musters the other boy. "You are one class above me, so probably already 17, aren't you? You can use magic now whenever you like. And go and apparate whenever and wherever you like." She sounds distinctly envious.

Levi nods to her words "Looks like she's done a runner." He says after her sister doesnt seem to be anywhere in sight but she doesnt seem to mind and so why should he and plus it seems realitvely safe right now. "My parents are a bit like that two, though yeah i'm seventh year and seventeen, though I havent really tried to apparate much of anywhere just yet well since I got my license." he shakes his head "Apparating's a bit uncomfortable, I prefer flying to be honest, though not exactly practical I suppose. "Your a Ravenclaw right?" he decides its probably best "Levi Esmond." he'll offer his hand.

Lara grins mischievously, an unusual expression on her otherwise serene face. "To be honest, it is rather the other way round. I took my time off for a while. I don't think that she minds, though." Lara takes off her glove at his introduction, then shakes his hand, giving it a light, friendly squeeze. Her eyes are just as blue as his, and her hand, especially her fingers, are rather cold to the touch. "Laryssa Stuart. And yes, I'm an Eagle. Pleased to meet you." She nods in acknowledgement and with the slightest hint of pride. Giving Levi a curious look, she asks: "You didn't come here by broom in broad daylight, did you? Personally, as much as I share your dislike for apparition, I hate flying, so not much choice there, I suppose." Her hand still bare, she reaches into the pocket of her coat, fishing for her purse.

He will shake her hand though does notice that her fingers are chilly "It is good to meet you, well properly anyways. I am a badger myself I play on the house team, seeker so I suppose I enjoy flying because of that." he chuckles a bit though shaking his head "That'd be aweful if I swooped down here in day like it is. I took muggle transport subway station. It was interesting, i've taken it before but since it's so infrequent its a new experience the next time I do." he grins. "I'm glad to have run into a classmate though, its interesting here but better if someones along with. Want to take in some more of the stalls?"

Lara smiles politely, although she knows his position of course. She's a girl and she hates flying and Quidditch and sorts, but she's not stupid. "Sorry, I didn't mean to be rude. Flying is probably the dream of every muggle and wizard alike. It's just… I am awfully scared of heights. I have always been, I don't know why. I almost fell from my broom during first year practice. But Quidditch is exciting. Exciting to watch from the stands." Her smile fades as she suddenly freezes on the spot, then spins around, empty hand leaving her pocket. She immediately plunges it back into her coat to where she is keeping her wand. Without pulling it out, she scans the crowd behind them, looking disturbed and mumbling something that might have been a curse, if it weren't so unlike her. "I have lost my purse. Or… someone must have stolen it." she finally manages to say.

Levi shakes his head "Its okay, its not for everyone and people like diffrent things. That is what makes things exciting that we're not all the same person." The seventh year says with a smile though she is likely correct about muggle flying and such. "Being afraid of heights is certainly nothing to be ashamed of." he adds though he watches as she seems distressed. He tilts his head slightly before she speaks answerng the question. "Hm, where do you remember having it last maybe we should retrace your steps, not sure I could summon it without it being noticed."

Lara clenches her fists in frustration, before pulling her glove back on again. Rubbing both hands Lara looks up at Levi, considering, her nervous breath leaving white mist the cold air. "I agree, summoning it here with so many Muggles around would certainly bring you into trouble. But thank you anyway." She gives him a weak but grateful smile. "I remember I had it when we entered the faire, because I was counting my money." Her gaze turns back on the crowd moving between the stalls behind them, trying to think it through logically. "Someone gave me a shove from behind a little while ago, and I felt a light tug at my coat. I didn't think anything of it at the time, but now it strikes me as rather suspicious. I don't think the purse would simply fall from my pocket. I mean, look, it's too deep for that." She shows Levi the pocket, which opens on top rather than on the side. "I think we should retrace my steps and have a look anyway. I…" her cheeks turn a shade more pink from embarassement. "…am sorry for the bother. You don't have to join me, you know." Her expression, however, is almost pleading.

"Well at last effort, i'd give it a try." Levi says to her words about not casting a spell though even he knows this isnt a wise idea but the purse being lost or stolen isnt a good thing either. "Hm, I think i'ver heard stories of muggle pick-pockets doing that as a distraction the whole bumping into thing I mean. Did you get a good look at them, maybe we can find them if tracing your steps doesnt work. The seventh year shakes his head smiling "Its quite alright, of course I want to help." he'll motion for her to lead the way but he'll trying to walk beside her, searching the ground and around them as they walk though.

Lara shakes her head sadly. "I don't remember who it was, I was a bit annoyed but didn't pay attention at the time." Re-assured by Levi's presence, she slowly circles the way back around the park until she arrives in front of a richly decorated stall selling sweets (including cookies, chocolate and fudge) and nuts. "This is the spot. I was standing here, looking at the sweets, when someone bumped into me from behind." She turns, looking around but seeing nothing out of the ordinary. "This is ridiculous." she admits with sigh. "It always happens to me. Never to my sister. She'll have a good laugh at me." Shooting Levi a glance, she asks, "Do you have siblings?"

Levi continues his looking around though he is listening to her words as well. "Of course, that would be annoying being run over like that." The seventh year says though he doesnt like that someone was taking advantage of her and when things were tough enough as it is. "Hm maybe he'll come back to try it again on someone and we can catch them?" He looks over though he is hoping they find it had been an accident more so than a theft. "I dont, i'm an only child but this isnt your fault." he says still looking taking a few steps to look around the stall.

Behind the stall, Levi might recognize a small item lying in the dirt between two bushes. On closer inspection, it is a small leather purse, lying open and empty.

The seventh year is careful with his searching knowing with traffic if on the ground it could be kicked or nudged or blown by the wind. Levi continues his search before something catches his glance and he'll head that way stooping to find it though he isnt one to snoop through a ladies purse its clear its empty. He will turn back and make his way back over. "I belive this is it, but i'm afraid its been picked through." he frowns "I'm sorry Laryssa." he adds.

Looking stunned, Lara picks up the small purse from his hand, turning it over. "Oh, wow… thank you! This is looks indeed like my purse. Where did you find it, I mean, you didn't… summon it? I hope?" She gives him a worried glance, while holding up the purse in front of her eyes as if looking for something particular. Then her expression brightens considerably. "It is not as empty as it appears, though, look…" She dusts off some of the dirt as best she can without her wand, then turns the purse inside out, closes it, and opens it again. This time, it contains a number of coins. "Admittedly not very useful against Muggle pickpockets unless you find it again, but… thanks to you…" She grins up at Levi, looking both excited and happy, and gives him a quick embrace, if he allows. "Thanks a lot!!"

Levi he will lower his hand once she'd taken the purse, but he shakes his head "Luckily I didnt need to summon it, but it was back behind the sweets stall a bit on the ground." The Hufflepuff explains though he watches when she opens the other hidden pocket "Ah, that is clever indeed." he says with a smile that not everything was taken from the purse. He doesnt move or anything at the embrace. He seems still all smiles or return of the smile. "Your quite welcome, though are you taking muggle transport home? I have money if you need it for travel I mean, or well if you did want to buy something while here, no need to let a thief ruin your day."

Lara now positively beams at him. "That is so nice of you. Don't worry, now that I have my money back, I am fine. There are still some Muggle coins inside. And I think, it is time we continue where we started from…" Stamping her feet against the cold she points to a stand serving hot drinks. "I could do with something hot now. How about you? Tell me… how do you spend Christmas this year? I mean, it is probably supposed to be all gloomy and such, because of the war, but… well, you know what they say about keeping the morale up."

The seventh year nods to her words returning the smile "Good i'm glad you still have something, that still horrid that you had to go through losing the purse to start with though." He will look over to where she motions to the drinks stand "Ooo something warm sounds lovely." Levi says he'll fall into step with her as they make for the stand. "The war is bad, yes but i'm hoping that family and friends I get to visit just make it a good holiday being cheerful is important at times." He chuckles, it seems that now the mystery of the purse has ended they can simply enjoy looking through stalls and the hot drinks they buy for as long as each can stand the cold before they will part each to find a warm place to relax.

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