(1940-06-03) Baring the Soul(bond)
Details for Baring the Soul(bond)
Summary: Shelley comes to the Department of Mysteries to help unravel a mystery.
Date: 1940-06-03
Location: Circular Room, Department of Mysteries

The best part of being an newly minted Unspeakable, is that you get to deal with the overflow of people who descend on the office and point them in the right direction. While she'd much rather be at her desk and researching things, or other fun mysterious things, right now she is sitting at a desk in the large circular room and nearly blending in the the wall behind her. Aside from her pale skin, her dark robes and hair are mixing in with the polished black material behind her.

Shelley has mixed feelings about this meeting - very mixed - but really, if anyone can keep a confidence… It's the Department of Mysteries. She strides in, her gaze falling on Morgana. She's just a kid, she can't help but think to herself. They sent her to meet with a kid? She didn't think they took people just out of Hogwarts! She clears her throat. "I have an appointment to meet with someone," she states. "Shelley Prewett."

Morgana may be a kid, but she was a very determined kid. Watching as the door opens, she nods her head to Shelley and checks the log book that is in front of her, verifying that the name on the time matches the person in front of her. "Yes, you are expected." She says politely. "Please have a seat, and tell me how I can help you today?"

"It's… a complicated matter," Shelley admits as she slips into the offered seat. "Over two years ago, I was working a case for the Auror's office with Auror Whittle when it went rather wrong." She tries to keep her words and her features as matter-of-fact as she can - but she really wishes she had a glass of whiskey in her hand. "Whittle was killed, and I was left… cursed, I suppose. I spent almost a year in Saint Mungos, at first not knowing who I was, and then thinking I was a child, before the healers were able to fully restore my memories - aside from the memories of that night, which have never been retrieved. I still have to take potions to maintain my memories and sense of self, and at times of stress I have been known to relapse - and no one really know why this is happening. But I've developed a theory."

Morgana takes out a quill and some parchment to begin taking notes. However it seems futile because she is writing on black parchment, with black ink, so whatever notes she happens to be taken are not visible. "Cursed you say?" She asks, not so much as a question but a prompt to continue talking. "And what theory has this lead you to?"

"I was speaking with Auror Cohen, and he confided in me that he believed he had a soulbond to another person. He explained the sorts of effects it can have, and it all sounded surprisingly familiar. Being aware when the other is in trouble, being aware of their emotions - those sorts of things. And he was particularly worried that it can have a detrimental affect on someone - if the other dies, but he didn't know what those affects could be." Shelley lets out a huff of air. "I think… Whittle and I may have been soulbonded. That perhaps her death played a factor in my current… disability."

Mentioning Cohen and the soul bond does cause her to pause her writing for a moment. She actually flips through a few pages of the black parchment before she continues. "Soulbonds are a very rare occurrence." Though she doesn't seem to question Cohen having one at all. "Please excuse the invasiveness of my questioning, but I need to make sure that my questions are complete. How long did you know Whittle before his demise?"

"Her," Shelley clarifies simply. "Alis Whittle and I went to Hogwarts together. We were the same year. That's when we met. We were best friends. We went through Auror's training together. Got a flat together." Her tone remains calm and even as she talks, and her features are a carefully maintained facade. This is not something she enjoys talking about - but she has years of experience, now, keeping it to herself.

"My apologies for my assumptions." Morgana says and she does sound sincere about it. "So you were best friends, would you say that you had a familial closeness or was it something deeper?" Again that quill is flying over the parchment as they talked. "I know it has been several years, but were you, in your time together, able to sense what she was feeling?"

"I… had thought I was simply very good at reading her - from knowing her so well. Why would I expect anything more? But I think that… yes, after hearing Cohen speak of it, as I said it sounded familiar. Even if she wasn't in the room, I knew if she was upset. I'd assumed it was from hearing the way she walked, or closed the door, or put something down forcefully…" Shelley has to concentrate on keeping herself from clenching her hands. She knew there would be questions - but it doesn't mean the closed and reserved woman is enjoying a moment of this.

"It is strange how the mind will rationalize what is uncommon but right in front of your face." Morgana turns the first piece of parchment over and continues on the next. "Did you ever dream of her? I'm not talking normal dreams, but ones where you would see her doing daily activities? Again I know it might be hard to recall it, but it is a symptom of a Soulbond."

"I did, at times. We rationalized it - or laughed about it. Of course I would dream about her painting - I could smell the turpentine in my sleep. Or if she dreamt of me making potions - she must have smelled them brewing. Most anything can be rationalized, I suppose," Shelley explains.

Morgana's mouth twitches in a frown as she nods. "Aside from your memory loss, have you noticed any other issues with yourself? Have you had difficulty with spells, or other skills you had before she died? Any change in your diet, or loss of interest in activities the both of you enjoyed together?"

Shelley lets out a laugh - but it's a humorless one. "I lost my best friend. I spent nearly a year in St. Mungos. It's taken me… quite some time to get my magic back to where I feel confident in again. I-" Here, she bites down on her tongue - with gentle pressure - as she ponders her next words and musters herself to give voice to them. "Alis… was always more closed off than I. She had trouble making friends, accepting people, trusting them. And since what happened, I suppose… so have I."

Morgana stays silent while Shelley bites her tongue, not wanting to interrupt this difficult thought process. "So you feel as if you've taken on some of her characteristics? Have you felt any sort of mood changes?" Morgana finally puts the quill down and folds her hands on the desk. "One last difficult question." Morgana pauses, not for effect but almost as if she doesn't want to know the answer to this question. "You said that you had lost your memory of what had happened, but do you recall feeling anything when she… passed." She says, trying to be a little less clinical in her questioning.

Shelley had - perhaps - been a little less than truthful when she said she had never retrieved memories of that night. With Graham's help, she had snippets of it. Perhaps most significantly, a glimpse of Alis as she was on the verge of death. She looks away from Morgana, her hands digging into the arms of the chair as she forces herself to keep her cool. "I do remember the look on her face," she admits softly. "Her chest had been… smashed. I felt like I couldn't breath. It… my chest ached." Though to say it ached seems a woeful understatement. "I couldn't help her."

There is an empathetic look on Morgana's face as Shelley recalls that memory. She lets Shelley grip the life out of that chair, it's wood, it can probably take the beating it's getting. After several moments she clears her throat. "Can I get you something? Water? Tea? Vodka?" She asks lightly. "Thank you for sharing that with me, I know it cannot be easy."

"If there's whiskey, I won't say no," Shelley answers, still looking away from Morgana - in the hope, perhaps, that the girl will miss the tear streaking down her cheek. Get a grip on yourself, Shelley.

Morgana leans down to grab something out of the desk drawer that she is in, and pulls out a bottle of amber liquid and a glass. She'll pour a bit for Shelley and leave the bottle on the desk, in case more is needed. If she spots the tear, she doesn't call her out on it. "From what you have told me, I do not have a doubt that you had a Soulbond with Alis." There seems to be a rather large BUT, that Morgana hasn't said yet.

Shelley takes the glass drinking from it before she'll dare look back at Morgana again. Simply having a glass in her hand seems to steady her somehow. "But does that knowledge help me at all? Can we use it to cure or ameliorate this… memory curse?"

"Well it at least gives us a place to start." Morgana says as she squares up the paper that she's taken her notes on. "As far as I have come in my research on Soulbonds, very little information exists about the half of the soul that is left behind. So this is partially uncharted territory." And as much as that makes her little Ravenclaw brain squee with glee, she does not express that. "We would have to do some tests, and I have a few ideas I would like to try once I do a bit more research."

"I'm at your disposal," Shelley answers. "This… encumbrance keeps me out of the field, and keeps me from doing my job properly. I want to do my job." And who can blame her for that? She takes another drink from her glass.

"I can understand that frustration." Merlin knows that if anything kept Morgana on the sidelines, she'd go a bit mad herself. "Give me a few days and I will get back to you. We'll also need to get you some clearance to properly be down here, if we're going to be researching you. Until then, try to think of anything you might have left out, any behavioral changes that you haven't already mentioned."

"I'll… think on it." Shelley frowns slightly as she adds, "If I need to take time away from the office for these… tests, is Worthington going to be sent paperwork stamped 'Department of Mysteries'? I don't relish the idea of telling anyone about this."

"We can work around your schedule. We should just need to observe you, and perhaps gather some information from St. Mungos on what they have done with you already." Reaching forward, Morgana fills the glass just a little more, before she puts the bottle away. "This department prides itself on secrets, we will not disclose what you are doing down here."

"Good," Shelley answers. "That's why I came." After her glass is refilled, she takes a deeper drink from it. "I do appreciate your help in this."

"My focus of study is on Soulbonds, so I believe we will be of great help to each other. I hope that I am able to help you, or at least get you to a point where you are able to do your job. Souls are tricky things, they're not something physical that we can manipulate, and yet our actions have the greatest effect on them." Morgana slips the notes she took into a folder and slide them into a drawer in the desk.

Shelley lets out a quiet snort. She's a gift, dropped into the girl's lap. Lovely. "Well. Perhaps what we learn will be of use to others, as well, someday. Alis would have liked that."

"That is my hope as well." Morgana says with a nod as she folds her pale hands on the desk. "Do you have any questions for me before you go?" This is after all her first official case, but she isn't about to let that be known, out loud.

"No - I suppose not. Other than your name, Miss…?" Shelley asks - before knocking back the remains of her cup. For now, she just wants to get out of this strange room. Who makes a round room? And why black?

"Where are my manners today. Unspeakable Morgana Rashley. You can easily find me here if you need me, or send me an owl if anything should happen between now and when I get my research complete." Getting her her feet, she'll gesture toward to door, knowing that this room unnerves a lot of people. She happens to like it.

Shelley stands and nods. "Miss Rashley. I'll send a copy of my schedule, so you will know when I'm free. Do I need to sign anything for you to gain access to St Mungo's files?"

"Yes, but I'll need to get the paperwork drawn up first, I'll owl it to you and you can either send it back to me or forward it on to Mungos. I'll be sure it goes to your home and not to your office so no questions are asked." Morgana says with a polite smile.

"Alright. Then I'll be waiting for your owl," Shelley agrees. "Good day, Miss Rashley." And - with her dignity and composure mostly in tact - she beats a hasty retreat from the Department of Mysteries. Besides - she has a bottle waiting for herself at home.

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