(1941-06-17) The Awkward Table
Details for The Awkward Table
Summary: Something of a misfit gathering turns out to be quite entertaining.
Date: June 17th, 1941
Location: The Three Broomsticks, Hogsmeade
Related: Mutually Beneficial?

The calm following a storm has settled over the Three Broomsticks. Only a handful of students remain, taking their dinner in Hogsmeade before returning to the castle before curfew. Among them, but sitting alone in the corner of the room is Samira. From her excellent vantage point, she surveys the other students, taking composed sips of tea.

Amongst the dawdling remnants still populating the cozy little pub, opened as it is to students for the last weekend before Summer (woo!), there's an awkward looking couple. Noticeably awkward. As in, worst blind date ever awkward. Picking at their dinner, the two youngsters occasionally make stilted attempts at quiet conversation, resulting in a momentary flutter of activity.. then nothing once more. The girl in particular looks awfully nervous; a not-unpretty blonde, whose features still retain the plump, cherubic qualities of youth. The boy opposite might be better-known; the Quidditch jock and all-around bigmouth, Anson Abbott. They're not a very likely couple - he usually goes for the more glamorous girls.

Whether Samira is paying any of this any mind or not, a shadow falls across her table after a moment, cast by the brunette who has materialised by her shoulder. Morrow Selwyn looks as painfully stylish as ever, donning ebon cigarette pants, surprisingly masculine in cut, velvet pumps of burgundy and a gauzy blouse, pinstriped in subtle golden thread. "Evening." The polite greeting is accompanied by a trademark smile. "..may I join you?"

Maybe she just wants company. Maybe she's bored. More likely, though, she wants a decent vantage point from within this nicely secluded corner.

Samira glances up and recognizes Morrow with a little quirk of a grin. Though the two have never properly met, one is always at least aware of another. And Samira's smile grows as Morrow asks to join her. "Please," she says with a nod. Once Morrow is seated, Samira watches her with keen interest, ignoring the floor show for the moment.

"Thanks." In all honesty, Morrow hadn't expected otherwise from the girl. Even if they're not close, neither one has given the other cause for dislike, over the years. Drawing out a vacant chair, the Ravenclaw eases down to a seat, notably out of the direct line of sight from the occupants of 'the Awkward Table', and she, too, seems to ignore them for the moment; focusing her attention on the curly-haired Slytherin opposite. Setting down a pint of Butterbeer - mmm, health food - the girl tucks her own dark tresses behind her ear and offers an easy grin to her newfound company. "Samira, isn't it?"

Eyes of a piercing crystalline blue take in the other's appearance; a practised sweep rather than a disparaging mannerism. "..your hair is amazing." Ah, the most reliable of ways to begin forging new friendships between girls.

Stepping into the pub from High Street outside is young Antonin Dolohov. A long fingered hand reaches upward to sweet the dark hair from his forehead, least it be in his eyes as he surveys the bar room proper. His brow furrows slightly as his eyes rove from one face to the next before spotting Morrow and Samira together in the back booth. He walks toward them, only noting Anson as he steps past and casts him a cruel smirk before continuing on. In the midst of a growth spurt, his arms and legs are perhaps a bit overly long for his frame, yet he still moves with the grace of an athlete. His stride doesn't falter until he reaches the two women and he dips his head in greeting. Eyes moving to Samira first, he offers her a faint smile and says, "Prince. I am surprised that you are not busy in the Hospital wing. Would you mind if I joined you two?" His eyes do shift toward Morrow, offering her the same nod in greeting. "It is… Selwyn, yes?"

Samira blinks with a slight lift of her brows. "It amazes? I had not known. Thank you." Resting forward on her elbows, Samira studies Morrow's features. The petite girl's eyes gleam. Smiling, she returns the token of female friendship at last. "The kohl on your lashes makes your eyes entrance. It shows your artist's hand well." Even as Antonin arrives and addresses her, Samira studies Morrow's eyes for a moment longer before at last turning to observe him with a grin of relaxed mirth. "Ah. Was there a misfortune I should know of? Did a flock of firsties misstep down the stairs and tumble into the Infirmary?"

Morrow accepts the compliment with the vaguely blase air of one used to them, though she does still look pleased. "Thank you. Have to work with what we have, I suppose." There now. A pleasant foundation to allow her to remain at the girl's table for no apparent reason other than socialising. Taking up her mug, the brunette is mid-sip when the other Slytherin approaches, looking up at him over the rim with a mute, apologetic widening of her eyes as the only initial response. A moment later, having swallowed and licked the lingering foam from her upper lip, the brunette relents to a slight grin, flitting an approving, amused glance toward Samira at the notion of tumbling First Years.

She remains politely quiet, though, until she's addressed. "That's right.. and you're.." She narrows her eyes a fraction, affecting an expression of thoughtfulness. Though, come on. Morrow surely knows everyone. She makes it her business t! Especially when they've been the center of some interesting stories, lately. "..Dolohov." She produces the name with a triumphant sparkle; a vague gesture of her fingertips implying she doesn't mind if he wishes to sit.

Briefly, a sidelong glance is cast toward Anson and his date. It doesn't linger long.

Antonin does pull out a chair, seating himself in a position that he can easily view both girls from across the table. "Dolohov, yes. Antonin Dolohov," the boy clarifies for Morrow. His voice doesn't carry the same malicious tint that it has of late when dealing with certain others at the school. He even smiles, revealing straight white teeth and handsome enough features now that they are not marred by a scowl, at Samira's joke regarding the first years and says conspiratorially, "No, not that I have heard of at least. But if they did, I hope it was a group full of Gryffindor mud bloods."

Samira glances side-long at Morrow to quietly add, "But a well-made canvas is ideal to such work." Taking a sip of tea, Samira returns to Antonin. His mudblood comment makes her giggle with impish mirth. "Ah, of course. The little lions are always so cute - putting on such brave faces for me. I can see them thinking - they are Gryffindors! They must have no fear. Must be bold! They try so hard to hide their brimming tears and quivering lips. Particularly from the scary Slytherin."

"I'd expect the odds would be stacked that way." muses Morrow in response to the boy, amusement in her pleasantly soft-spoken tone as her attention is drawn back to her present company. Truth be told, she's never paid Antonin much mind at all until recently. As graduation draws closer, it seems as if many of the more senior students find themselves vying for certain spots on the social ladder. And, considering his goal, according to the chatter at Hogwarts, appears to be 'bully', the grinning boy is not exactly the stereotypical Slytherin thug, on first impressions. How curious.

Tracing a fingertip around the rim of her glass idly, her other arm propped atop the table comfortably in an unthinking reflection of Samira's posture, the Ravenclaw observes the exchanges between the pair; not seeming bothered at all. You don't have to be in a particular house to have purist tendencies, after all… and the Gryffindors have been irritating as heck, of late. Scooping some foam and popping it into her mouth, she eventually offers a change of topic toward the other girl.

"Have you any interesting plans for the summer, Samira? I was rather hoping you might appear at the theatre program at the Academy." As a Selwyn, it's in her nature to entice those with any noteworthy talent to the stage. Especially when that stage is largely funded by her kin. "My father's leased me an apartment to use.. perfect for parties." Very exclusive parties, no doubt.

Antonin laughs along with Samira at the thought of the Gryffindor students attempting to hide their emotions from the perceptive Samria, the expression of happiness reaching the young boys eyes. "Oh yes. The scary Slytherin." He rolls his eyes and shakes his head as if this stereotype of his house is so outlandish. "They antagonize us, in most situations. It is hardly our fault that we are just better than them when push comes to shove." He drifts into silence as Morrow directs the conversation toward the summer and the Theatre Program. "I have seen that advertisement up around school for the… fun… at WADA," he inputs in a pleasant voice.

Samira giggles, bringing her teacup to her lips before peeking over at Morrow. The invitation piques a curious tilt of her head. "Theatre? I had not made such plans, but I would consider /your/ invitation. I hope to be fairly busy at St. Mungo's again this summer, but tell me of your theatre program."

Does Morrow believe in Dolohov's summary, portraying all Slytherins as mere victims of stereotyping? ..perhaps. It's impossible to tell what the giirl thinks, generally. She's too good at keeping that impassive mask in place, and she's not going to be drawn into throwing her weight behind argument, here and now. Letting her gaze stray again toward Anson Abbott and his pretty blonde date, she quirks a brow as he jumps up abruptly. Oh dear. It seems as though hapless Harriet has managed to spill her drink into his lap. What a shame.

Not bothering to disguise an open smirk, her lips twisting in mirth even as she looks back to the two seated at this table, Morrow takes up her drink and swirls it idly, lazily in its glass. "I saw them, too." she replies to Antonin, with a fractional nod. "Apparently Professor Beery's doing a fundraiser of some sort." A light shrug of her slender shoulders suggests that's perhaps all she knows, for the time being. As for Samira, the brunette shifts her gaze to the renowned dancer with a sympathetic smile replacing the malevolent amusement of a moment ago. "Mmm, I'll be apprenticing at Twilfitt and Tattings, myself. Not exactly on the same scale as mending broken limbs, I grant you.. but it's something to do."

Antonin nods at Morrow's assessment of the Summer Theatre Program that had been advertised, it is a disinterested sort of nod that reveals that Summer Theatre isn't really Dolohov's thing, as if that was something that may have been a possibility. Could anyone really imagine Antonin acting? The young Slytherin shrugs his shoulders and says, "It is quite impressive that you are starting your… second apprenticeship with St. Mungos, Samira? Healing is a good talent to have."

Samira withdraws, settling back into her chair to glance from Morrow to Antonin with a bit of a grin. "Thank you. I enjoy it. But I look forward to watching your future persuits, Antonin." She peeks at Morrow out of the corner of her eye. "And your designs will surely be works of splendor. I hone my craft to conquer death - but your pursue yours to achieve something transendental. Already you exhibit such a talented eye for such beauty. Perceptive ones will hold their breath for your creations."

"Thank you." There's nothing like a bit of flattery, false or otherwise, to butter up creative types. And Morrow basks, momentarily, in the mutual appreciation for things of beauty, affording Samira a warmly approving curve of lips by way of response. "If you like, perhaps I could come up with something for your next performance? Not that your dancing requires any further embellishment to be entrancing, of course." There's a pause, Morrow's head tilting ever so slightly. "..in fact, I've heard you know some form of it that we've yet to see? I've been ever so curious about that.." Well, that and she doesn't like to be outdone easily. She wants to know how to do it, too!

Shifting her attention to the boy now, the Ravenclaw softens her expression in comically feigned sympathy. "I'm sorry.. we're boring you with all this talk of parties and pretty things, aren't we." Narrowing her eyes, she bites gently on her lower lip for a moment or two, before seeming to brighten with inspiration. "Quidditch, then. Give us some of your predictions for next term." She raises her glass, taking a leisurely sip before flashing a mischievous grin. "..I'm not even snooping, either. The finer points of the game are completely lost on me." That's probably not true. But she's certainly no Quidditch nut, either.

Antonin shrugs his shoulders as he says, "Who said that I did not appreciate a good party? Quite the contrary, I do enjoy a good party now and again. I simply was not certain that an invitation was extended to me." He gestures a hand left to right to indicate Morrow and Samira. "I was not going to intrude in your discussion." He regards Morrow for a moment and then shrugs his shoulders. "Quidditch will be as it should be. Slytherin will win the cup, and the rest will fight for the scraps."

Samira doesn't quite bask in Morrow's returned compliments, but the she seems pleasantly pleased. And Morrow's offer of designing a costume fully captures Samira's focus. But she only smiles in response for the moment. Following Morrow's attention to Antonin, Samira quietly joins, "Antonin well-possesses his social graces. Ascending to all occasions and conducting himself well, yes? Given that the occasion merits such."

"Cheeky." is the smirking response from the Ravenclaw, though she doesn't seem unduly concerned. It's only Quidditch, after all. She's not some Gryffindor hothead who's going to take umbrage at such a claim. "And you'd be quite welcome to attend, if it's your sort of thing." Having not spent much time around Antonin, it's hardly as if Morrow's going to know if he's some sort of flamboyant party-goer or not. But at least she's finding out for herself, rather than believing what's being spun by the rumour-mill, these days.

Still with her Butterber in hand, the slender brunette shifts her angle ever so slightly in order to observe the happenings at the Awkward Table. Anson seems to have been mollified, despite the dousing he received. He's being rather suspiciously patient with the flustered blonde he's out with.. and she seems utterly besotted, sitting beside the jock now and batting her eyelashes adoringly up at him. For whatever reason, the scene prompts a wolfish grin from Selwyn.

Antonin shrugs his shoulders and says, "I might make an appearance. It would depend on who all will be in attendance, of course." He nods his head toward Samira in agreement with her assessment of himself and seems about to say more when he catches that shift of Morrow's attention back toward the Awkward Table. Turning his head to follow her line of sight, Antonin wears an amused expression when he swivels back around to his table. "What? Are you jealous of the blood traitor's attention toward that other girl? You seem to be awfully interested in what is going on over there."

Samira follows Morrow's gaze to see what prompts the wolfish grin. The scene and a quick glance back at Morrow, sparks an amused little smirk. She lifts her teacup, but pauses with a blink at Antonin's accusation of jealousy. Slowly sipping, she peeks over at Morrow.

"No." Morrow's reply is calm, and blithely amused, rather than defensive or embarassed; her gaze remaining on the miserable couple across the pub. "I set him up with her as a punishment." What he's being punished for exactly, she doesn't say. But she also returns her focus to the pair she's sitting with, seeing as her distraction has been noted rather than ignored in favour of conversation. To Antonin, she offers a vague, 'suit yourself' smile; plainly having no intention of begging him to come to any social gathering. She's the one being charitable here, by even hinting at an invite. But she won't dent his ego by pointing out such a blatant truth. "What were we talking about.."

Seeming to shrug off whatever the previous lines of discussion were, the brunette props both elbows on the table now, cupping her drink in both palms and looking between the two Slytherins. "You know.. you two would make an awfully attractive couple." Oh yes, she didn't miss the smile Samira got, after the boy made a beeline for the curlytop's table. But it's with a hint of mischief that she draws attention to it. Payback, perhaps, for Antonin's presumption.

Antonin leans back into his chair, one hand resting atop the table as he drums his fingertips across the wooden surface and gazes at Morrow with a faint smile, his dark features examining her with a sort of familiarity, as if he were looking at someone not unlike himself. "A punishment? Well that is interesting. I did not know that you were the sort to be levying about punishments, though I dare say that I would approve of such an action taken toward the blood traitor." He jerks his head backward, to indicate Anson behind him.

The lure of conversation toward himself and Samira draws no embarrassed reaction from Dolohov, his eyes flicking toward the Slytherin girl and lifting his left brow fractionally, a small smile playing about his lips as he shifts attention back to Morrow. "What would make you think that we are not already a couple? I mean… I did come here to see her, after all. And you are right, she is quite a beauty. You would be hard pressed to find anyone to say differently."

Samira's blinks, surprised yet amused at Morrow's counter-accusation. And glancing at Antonin, her eyes shine with silent laughter. Though there is no mockery in it. There never is. Only her own, relaxed amusement. She makes no effort to embarress the boy with rejection. And from behind her teacup, she simply smiles, enjoying the exchange.

Aware of the thoughtful gaze, the brunette meets it steadily. What? Does he think only Slytherins have the capacity for cruelty? Tsk. Though, in fairness, she does things often for idle amusement rather than spite. Like now, for instance.

"Wellll… I expect the charismatic Carrow heir might have something to say, if you'd been sniffing around his former betrothed so soon. But that's not for me to say, I suppose." Morrow counters Antonin with a perfectly innocent smile, before taking a longer sip of her drink. "And no, I certainly wouldn't blame you for being captivated." She might question Samira's taste, of course. Though perhaps every wealthy young lady might be seduced by a bit of rough, while she's still young and fancy-free?

Looking sidelong to the dancer, including her in the teasing directed at the boy, Morrow arches a brow in enquiry. "What about it, hmm? Is he your type..?" How kind of her, to assist in this matchmaking! Love's young dream.

Antonin's expression remains pleasant and amused, refusing to rise to the jibe and allow any hint of embarrassment to bleed through as Morrow continues the line of discussion. His eyes remain on her, even as she turns to gaze at Samira, marking the moment well in his memories. His smile has drifted from amused, to something bordering his more customary cruelty as he says, "And I would say that the Carrow heir should likely be more mindful of his own affairs, than that of Samira. She is not his possession to lord over."

Samira shifts, settling on her elbow, closer at Morrow's side. She sets down her teacup and studies Antonin, considering Morrow's question and Antonin's response. At last, with smiling care, she selects her words and sets them upon the table. "I must admit, even after Edward Carrow, I do still prefer someone older than I am. But Antonin - you do have wonderfully 'dark' eyes. And your movements always bear an appealing precision. Never a trace of uncertainty or hesitation. I imagine that the clamor from other young girls will soon distract you from me."

The Ravenclaw permits herself a soft laugh, the humour apparently quite genuine, following Dolohov's retort. "Quite so!" she remarks, before adding a mouthed 'nice' toward the lad, grinning conspiratorially. A very smooth way to earn some points with the beautiful Samira. Well played, sir, well played.

Remaining silent, she allows time for the Slytherin girl to appraise the young man and offer her measured answer. The latter seems to meet with Morrow's agreement and approval, as she slowly begins to nod, likewise studying Antonin's features. It might be quite unsettling, actually, having two young ladies looking at you with such intent.

Ah well, too bad.

"Goodness, he does, doesn't he." Tilting her head, Selwyn ponders over the unfathomable depths of those eyes, actually seeming to take the pointed-out detail quite seriously. Well, she doesn't mock him for it, anyway. "Yes.. just a matter of time until you're beating off a gaggle of would-be suitors with your broomstick. But the heart wants what it wants! Don't you give up, if you know your heart's desire, that's my advice." Subtly shifting her weight back now, breaking the spell of focus, she sighs in satisfaction, draining the last of her Butterbeer.

"I will admit that I did not truly come here solely to seek you out Samira, I was simply attempting a bit of humor when Selwyn here attempted to turn the tables upon me and by extension you when I drew attention to her focus on Abbott, rather than raising to the bait she dangled about. But I do appreciate your kind words," Antonin says evenly. He shrugs his shoulders as if it hardly matters at this point, the moment already passed and his eyes shift back toward Morrow. "I expect that would be your advice. You would no doubt enjoy the sight of me pining after Prince, when she so obviously has no inclinations toward myself," he says toward Morrow, though the inflection in his voice and the amused light to his eye reveals that he perhaps does not disapprove of this, should his assessment of her be correct.

"And I appreciated yours, Antonin," responds Samira softly before letting the boy continue. Glancing at Morrow, she adds softly, "I expect if there were ever someone Antonin Dolohov truly wanted, little would dissuade him and a heart would soon be captured. I cannot picture someone with eyes such as his to ever 'pine'."

"Ohhh, you're funny." Morrow says this with the unmistakeable tone of 'ahh, now I get it'. Finally, an explanation for that haircut! It's all down to an actual sense of humour. Who would have thought? She takes the whole speech from the Slytherin boy without batting an eyelash, setting down her now empty glass with a languid smile playing about her lips. Once he's done, though, she studies Antonin anew, resting her chin lightly atop the knuckles of one hand, elbow propped. "…so she is your heart's desire." Hey, he's the one who just admitted Samira's the one he'd be pining after, should he follow the advice. "I apologise for that, then.. I was only speaking in jest." Was she? Really? The unwavering curve of her mouth suggests maybe, just maybe.. not.

Only slowly does she tear her own vivid eyes away fron the boy, looking to the other girl with a return of warmth to her expression. "I agree, entirely. He doesn't seem the sort to be easily dissuaded." Growing restless it seems, the Ravenclaw pushes back her dark tresses with a rake of one hand, stealing a glance belatedly toward the Awkward Table. Hey. Where'd they go? Damnit. Twisting her lips now in the first visible hint of displeasure, she casts her gaze over the establishment slowly. They're pretty much the only ones left now. "What time is it?"

Antonin's eyes narrow a fraction at Morrow, though the smile is still present. He shakes his head and says, "Yes. She is my heart's desire, because that is totally what I said." He glances aside toward Samira and shakes his head, "And here I thought that the Ravenclaw were supposed to be the smartest of us. As it turns out… well, at least this one seems to be lacking. Or at least deaf." His eyes are back toward Morrow and there is an unmistakable intensity there as he sizes the girl up. He glances around at the sight of displeasure, Antonin looks back to Morrow and says dryly, "Likely time for you to be scampering off to see how your punishment is going."

Samira glances off out the window at the darkening streets. "Perhaps our curfew is upon us." She rises with the languid grace of a cat and even streeeetches luxuriously, arching with her arms extended above her head. Relaxing with a sigh, she smiles up at Morrow. Even Antonin is likely taller than her. Delicately she takes Morrow's hand to try to capture the other girl's attention for a moment. "My dear Morrow, it has been delightful to meet you." She looks to Antonin and with a bit of a grin, says, "Don't be fooled, cunning snake. This eagle plays clever games. She was not misplaced in her house. Genius takes many forms."

Contrastingly, the Ravenclaw seems only further entertained as Antonin's demeanour darkens. "Cheer up, Dolohov. Don't get upset at me because you trip over your own words. I'm only trying to help." Roughly translated out of honey-tongue? Don't try to twist someone's meaning if you don't like it being done right back! Morrow's not the type to be intimidated by the boy, regardless of his reputation. Or his glowering at her. Nope. She just offers him a glimpse of white teeth in a grin, pushing back her chair and likewise rising to stand as Samira does.

"Mmm, so it would seem, unfortunately. Goodness, I can't wait for the holidays…" Settling her attention back on the petite Prince, the taller brunette visibly softens; a marked difference to the prickling flare of danger between she and the dark-eyed boy. Allowing her hand to be lightly grasped, she inclines her head in reciproacted gratitude. "Likewise, I'm sure. No doubt I'll see you again soon enough." To the boy, she offers no such assurances, meeting his gaze as she turns from the table smoothly. "..Dolohov."

Apparently content to let the others find their own way in peace, the brunette strolls across to the bar, helpfully setting down her empty glass and engaging the bartender in a little quiet conversation. She has an impressive, almost adult poise, even in this. Old beyond her years! A good thing for a teenager.

Antonin remains seated as Samira rises, watching the interaction between the two girls. He laughs openly in response to Morrow's jab at him and shakes his head, holding her gaze and pointedly not even responding to her use of his surname as a farewell. Once she has gone, Antonin presses himself to his feet and looks downward to Samira, "She's a viper if ever I've seen one," he says in a tone low enough not to carry across the room. "She'll wind up finding out that some of us are more willing to fight with wand than words, though, if she isn't careful." He begins making his way toward the door at a casual pace, not in a hurry, whether curfew is drawing near or not.

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