(1940-01-22) Face Your Fears
Details for Face your Fears
Summary: Lucian is called to the Department of Mysteries for some tests.
Date: 1940-1-22
Location: Department of Mysteries/Morgana's Apartment
Related: A Mysterious Cloud Rolls In

It's not uncommon for Lucian to be called to the Department of Mysteries. It happens every few weeks or so, and it's usually Morgana giving him a heads up, and a time to arrive. However this time seems to be a little different. Normally Morgana meets him at the door, and they're both led to a room where they are interviewed, examined and lightly experimented on. So far at this point nothing too critical has happened, they mostly ask about feelings and other such emotional states. Today, he was met by Unspeakable Jones, one of the many who have been working on the project. He's led off to one of the many rooms in the winding and confusing corridors of the department and offered an uncomfortable chair to sit in in an otherwise empty room. "Miss Rashley will not be joining us today, because she is working else where in the department. However we would still like your input on how things are progressing with the two of you." Jones seems intent on standing today.

Despite several visits to the Department of Mysteries, Lucian still hasn't got the slightest sense of the layout of the place. He would have thought that someone that spent seven years navigating the serpentine labyrinth under Hogwarts would have a better feel for the mazelike comlpex. He's become convinced that there must be some subtle Confundus Charm placed on any non-Unspeakable (Speakable?) that enters.

He shifts in the hard, blocky chair, grunting irritably at Jones. "What's this about? She's always been here before." He narrows his eyes suspiciously. "Is Morgana alright?"

"You tell me." Jones pulls out a clip board and a quill to write down a few notes on. As far as Lucian can tell, everything feels normal from that bond that has formed between the two of them. Perhaps she is busy with other duties? "If you would like to take a seat we can begin." He says looking up from the clipboard. "Have you noticed any new developments in your bond?" These are the standard questions that they're always asking at these sessions.

Lucian glowers at Jones, probably not for the first time. Lucian may have agreed to these sessions, but he's never especially comfortable during them. "No," he sighs. "It's just like every other time you've asked. I can always feel her, right at the edge of my senses. It only changes when something significant happens."

"Well, we would like to get readings on the both of you separately. We have an easier time accessing Miss Rashley, since she is training here. We've also noticed what a calming influence she has on you. It's hard to get a proper baseline on you, if she's effecting your senses." He'll scribble a few things down on his paper before he turns his dark eyes back to Lucian. By now, he's used to the glares. "Do you dream of her?" This question differs from the other.

Lucian mutters incoherently. But Lucian cannot deny that he tends to be much more relaxed with Morgana around. His thoughts turn to Ria, and how often that was the opposite with her. The thought itself is reassuring; surely he made the right choice. "Dream of Morgana? Well…of course." He can feel a bit of heat in his cheeks, and he quietly hopes Jones doesn't inquire too deeply about the nature of some of those dreams.

Whether or not Jones notices the heat in the cheeks, he continues on with the questioning. He slowly starts to pace around the room, walking around the chair in a wide circle as he talks. "What does she do in these dreams? Is it cryptic and nonsensical, or things that she would do in her every day life, like eating a meal or reading?"

Lucian bristles when Jones walks behind him. It gives the impression of a predator circling its prey, and that grates on Lucian's instincts. "I have lots of different dreams. Look, I know what you're getting at. You want to know if I'm dreaming about what she's doing here. Isn't that what those mind-reading sessions are for? The legi-whatchacallit?"

"Had I wanted to know that, I would have asked that Mr. Proudmore." Jones says in an even tone, circling around the seated man again. "We know what she is working and we already have your word that you will not share anything you find out. That will have to suffice for now." Once Jones is in front of Luican again, quickly scribbling on his paper. "We have a theory that we're trying to prove." Though something is a bit off about the room. The door that Lucian entered through is no longer there, and should he look at the rest of the walls, he'll find them to all be smooth and doorless.

Lucian's eyes dart from one wall to the next, and he looks behind him to verify that he seems to be well and truly trapped. A flood of anger rushes through him, fueling his flight instinct. "What in Hades is going on? Where'd the door go?" Lucian is on his feet now, glowering at Jones with increasing menace.

"What door? Are you sure there was one to begin with?" Jones says passively, and when Lucian gets to his feet, he doesn't seem to be surprised when he does. "Please sit down Mr. Proudmore." He says sternly. "I assure you that you are quite safe here."

However that's when it starts, that feeling of dread. There is a spike of fear from Morgana, but it at a higher level that Lucian would have ever experienced before. The first time he felt it, the day she was face to face with Dark Wizards is nothing compared to what he is feeling now. That sense of Morgana being in danger is overwhelming, and yet there appears to be no way to get to her.

"Don't you bloody well play games with me, Jones," Lucian growls irritably. But the irritation quickly gives ways to outright panic. "Jones! Open the fucking door! She's in trouble!" His wand is out in a flash, pointing at the wall. Wait…is that the wall he came in through? Damn this place! "Emancipare!" he shouts in desperation, uncertain if the spell will even have an effect on a nonexistent door.

"No one is playing games Mr Proudmore." Jones replies, seeming unphased by the outburst and simply ducks when that spell bounces off of the wall and fizzles out. "Please refrain from using spells in our department, or we will remove your wand. Miss Rashley is not in any danger what so ever, she is safe here." The feelings that Lucian feels are saying something different. There is a constricting feel to this fear, one that feels like she's wanting to escape or flee. "Now, why don't you tell me what you're feeling."

Lucian whirls on Jones, his eyes dark with rage. "You know damn well that I'd know if she's in danger, and she is. Now open this bloody room, or I'll have your arse!" He doesn't move, but somehow he seems to fill the space he is standing in more and more by the second.

"You'll have it where?" That presence in the room is obviously noticed, as there is a twitch in Jones' face. Though he reaches down to quickly scribble some notes on the page. He doesn't seem to feel the same urgency as Lucian does, but after a moment or two of silence, a door appears. "There. You have your door. Now the question is, how ever will you find Miss Rashley?"

Lucian eyes, the door, then Jones. The feral grin that form on his face would give a normal man cause for serious concern. "You're going to take me to her." He advances on Jones, wand at his side, hand extending to seize the man by the arm.

Jones seems disappointed that Lucian doesn't appear to know where to go. Either way he sighs, moving his arm out of the way from the younger man and walking toward the door. He only passes by a few rooms in the hallway before he gestures toward an open door. That fear is spiking, and there is a sense of irrationalbility to it. "There you are."

The room is almost identical to the one that Lucian was in, save for the fact there isn't a chair in the middle. Instead there is a large green and writhing plant in the middle of the floor, and it wrapped around someone who, despite knowing hwo to avoid it, can't seem to lay still, and stop writhing. There is panicked breathing and whimpers as Morgana tries to tear it all away, and it's clear to see where her fear was coming from. For the moment she doesn't see Lucian.

Devil's Snare. Lucian is no great shakes at Herbology, but that's First Year stuff. His mind races back to learning about it, when Professor Beery had a small sample with which to demonstrate. Lucian failed his test to rescue a little doll from the Snare when he couldn't manage to conjure fire. For a moment, he stands transfixed. He knows he can't wrestle the vines. Only dreaded flame will frighten it off.

"Anya, hold on!" Lucian rushes into the room, aiming his wand at the base of the Devil's Snare. His hand trembles violently and his eye blink rapidly as if stung by smoke. Through short, panicky breaths, he growls, "Incendio!"

The flames do their work, the Devil's Snare shrivels away from the flames from Lucian's wand. It takes a moment for them to let Morgana go, but once they do she scampers away from them as if she herself were on fire. She finds a corner of the room and puts her back to it, her eyes darting wildly across the room, as if she isn't really seeing what is there. She pants as she tries to calm herself, and this may be the first time that Lucian has seen her this uncomposed. Well at least outside of the bedroom.

Lucian is no bastion of composure, himself. The moment the flames erupt, he scrambles away from them, pressing himself to the wall, eyes wide in terror. He looks over to Morgana, and his heart tightens. He wants to go to her, to hold her and tell her she is safe. But his throat won't release the words. His legs refuse to move. Even as the flames fade, having so little fuel, the fear seizes him with crushing force.

Morgana makes a noise liked a caged animal when she feels that fear from Lucian roll over her, and for several seconds she can't do anything but drown in it. BUt she feel sthat same pull, that need to make it better, so with a shaky hand she raises her wand. "Aguamenti!" However nothing comes out of the end of her wand. She tries agian. "Augamenti, Augimenti, AUGIMENTI!" She isn't able to focus as her panic now rises. "LUCIAN! MOVE!" She herself is trying to get to her feet, but is only able to stumble forward a few feet.

Lucian's eyes remain transfixed on the tiny flames and embers that remain. They might as well be a massive conflagration, for all the terror pouring off of him. He slides down the wall, shrinking away from his most hated nemesis. He might have seems large and menacing in the other room. But here, he is no more than a little boy, trapped in a burning carriage house.

It takes a lot of effort and focus, and that fear is hard to suppress, hard to push down, but she has motivation. Lucian's fear drives her, pushes that fog of her own fear out of her mind. "Augamenti!" She says, pointing her wand at he flames, and this time water does shoot out of the end of her wand, extinguishing the flames that are between her and Lucian. Once they're out of the way she stumbles her way over to him, and kneel in front of him, putting her hands on the side of his face. They're trembling, but she's trying to get him to look at her.

Tears stream from Lucian's eyes, and even without the bond, it would be obvious that he isn't entirely in the present. But at the touch of her hands, he gasps softly and looks up at her. He suddenly reaches out to pull her close, desperately needing to hold her. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry," he whispers over and over, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry…"

"Shhhh…" Morgana says, still trembling, still shaking. "I'm here, I'm right here, I'm okay." Her voice sound raw, and there is a shaking to her voice that isn't there before. Her arms wrap around him and she shakes, letting that fear come over her again, now that she is safe.

"That's all for the day Mr. Proudmore. Miss Rashley, feel free to have the rest of the week off, and to have your report ready by Monday."

Lucian finds solace in Morgana's voice. Her warmth against him brings peace, banishing the memory of flame. But Jones's words…those bring only anger. "You son of a bitch," he growls, starting to push himself up to his feet, albeit carefully with Morgana in his arms.

"Lucian, stop!" Morgana says, trying to calm that beast she feels riling up inside of him. "This is what we agreed to, remember? They wouldn't have let it harm me, I was safe, it was a controlled envrioment." It's just that rational thought was out the window. "Let's just go home my knight… please?"

"This is not what we agreed to," Lucian snarls. "We're here to help, not to be tortured!" His muscles tense, ready to pounce. At any moment, there could be an irate lion in the room. "I want someone else on this project. Not this wanker here." He gestures dismissively at Jones.

"I'll talk to St. Cloud on Monday, I don't believe this is what he had in mind." Morgan can feel that anger, that need to pounce rising in Lucian and she tugs him away. "You won't have to do that again, I promise." At least not intentionally. She reaches up to touch his face and try and catch hi seyes. "Please Lucian… I just want to go home."

"It's not me I'm worried about." When he finally meets Morgana's gaze, she can catch a brief glimpse of whiteless, feline eyes shifting back to a human appearance. He lets out a heavy breath, then takes her hand in his. "Let's get out of here before I do something beastly." Glaring at Jones, he obliges Morgana at last, leading her out of the room to the confusing hallways.

Morgana calms down when she sees his eyes return to normal and some tension leaves her shoulders. When he takes her hand and leads her into the hall, she takes the lead, guiding him through the halls and out of the office. She doesn't even bother to stop at her desk to gather what she needs, she really just wants to go home. "They wouldn't have harmed me Lucian, it would not be wise for them to do so, then they experiment would be over, would it not?"

Lucian gives a growly sigh, clinging to Morgana's hand lest the Department of Mysteries separate them and leave him hopelessly lost in its maze-like corridors. "That doesn't justify them tormenting you." Or me. He doesn't say it aloud. But he's sure they must have known about his problem with fire, which is why they chose the Devil's Snare.

Thankfully, they manage to leave the department and get back out into the real world, however Morgana seems reluctant to speak about what happened until they're safe and sound at home. Once they're inside she begins to pace, and her voice is low and quiet as she speaks. "They told me that my phobia was a weakness, and that I would have to face it. They've been digging around in my head, they knew what it was. I don't… I don't think they expected you to use fire, nor to save me. I don't think this went to plan… or if it did I… I don't even know." She runs her fingers through her hair rapidly.

Lucian detours to the kitchen to fetch glasses and a bottle of vodka. Pouring two, he brings one to Morgana. "Your phobia? What phobia?" The notion that they may be preying upon her fears does nothing to calm Lucian's anger toward the department.

"Yes, I have on." Morgana says, frowning, as if admitting it is going to make it worse. "When I was really young maybe three years old, I was exploring my grandparents guardened and I just got snatched up but a patch of devils snare. It's hard to tell someone that young what to do, that lying still will make it all stop." She says with a frown, reaching for he glass she takes a long drag off of it before she puts it down. "I thought it was over it, but… it apparently hasn't gone away."

Lucian takes a heavy swig of the vodka, growling as it burns its way down. "That tosser, Jones…he was disappointed that I couldn't find you on my own. I think he was hoping the bond would lead me to you. Bloody idiot. I could've told him it doesn't work like that."

"Jones doesn't strike me as the type to listen, because he needs to things for himself." Morgana msays, watching as Lucian consumes the vodka. She quietly grips the side of the counter and sighs. "I'll get him removed from the project. Or try to at least. Perhaps politely request will work. In the end that shouldn't have been done that way. They could of had a lion bounding through the halls and that mgiht have been worse."

"Bloody fucking right they could have," Lucian grumbles, finishing off the tumbler of vodka with a heavy gulp. He lets out a heavy sigh, visibly shedding as much of his anger as he can to give her a look of concern. "Are you alright?" He sets his glass on the counter and extends an arm invitingly to her.

"Though the thought is amusing, I don't think it would bode well for the desks in the office to have a lion roaring on top of them." Morgana says with a shake of her head. When he asks if she's okay she shakes her head. "It's stupid, isn't it? The things we fear. It's a plant, just a simple plant, and I know if I stay very still, and I don't move, it will let me go. But that thought doesn't enter my head, I just react and.." That anxiety wells up in her again, and rolls off of her in waves. She takes several deep breaths, trying to calm herself before she continues. "It's a plant, and a event that took place over a decade ago, it shouldn't effect me."

Lucian wraps his arm around her, pulling her to his chest and kissing the top of her head. "It's not stupid. It's not like you're afraid of some daisy. It's a bloody killer plant. Fear is…it's brutal. Don't feel bad over it." A slight shudder runs through him, a flash of his own primal fear surging up, but just for a moment.

Morgana buries her face in his chest, taking a moment to center herself again. "It's an imperfection, one that I can't seem to shake, nor am I likely to shake it. It's a weakness that can be exploited, and I don't like having those." When that flash of fear wells up in him, she takes a sharp breath and pulls away to look at him. "We need to do something. To get our mind off of this."

Lucian downs the remainder of his vodka and nods. "Can't say I think that's likely to happen." The stubborn young man has a long history of holding onto things he should have let go of ages beforehand. "But alright, I'm game. What do you have in mind?"

Morgana finishes hers as well, gently setting the tumbler down and debating on refilling it but holds off for the moment. "I'm tempted to go spend time with the gryffs, but I think…" She'll let her arms wrap around him and nuzzle against his neck. "I think we both need to let off some aggression. As primal as possible."

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