(1941-06-19) A Dangerous Oath
Details for A Dangerous Oath
Summary: Oberon visits Samira in the Hospital Wing and reminds her of her oath to the Knights of Walpurgis.
Date: 19 June, 1941
Location: Hospital Wing, Hogwarts
Related: Chivalry Is Not in this Knight's Code

((OOC WARNING: This scene is fairly intense at times, involving dangerous mental instability, physical harm, and threatening behavior. Every effort was taken to portray these themes maturely and responsibly, but we understand that some people will find them disturbing, and may not wish to read about them.))

Though his imperious strides through the halls of Hogwarts are usually in the company of other Slytherins, Oberon Lestrange is suspiciously alone this afternoon. He slows his steps as a pair of Hufflepuff girls appear ahead of him. Their giggling conversation quiets at the sight of the formidable Sixth Year, and there are several tense heartbeats as his eyes follow them while they pass by.

The girls take the first available turn to escape Oberon's sight, and he waits several moments to be sure they've put some distance between them. Satisfied, he turns toward the stone wall of the corridor. Staring intently at the wall, he takes in a slow, deep breath through his nostrils. He balls up his fingers into a fist, and then throws a punch straight forward. An audible crack as his hand strikes the stone elicits a gasp from a nearby portrait of a wizard with a wispy beard. Oberon merely grunts, then casts a glare toward the painting. "What are you looking at?"

Oberon looks dispassionately down at his hand. Two fingers are bent to the side. Already, the flesh has begun to swell and turn a grotesque shade of purple. His knuckles are split open and bleeding. He nods quietly to himself, then continues his path down the corridor, heading for the Hospital Wing.

Now that exams are over and students can only now wait for impending doom-cloud of their grades. Perhaps this is why the Infirmary is unusually busy. Madam Spleen has her hands so full that she has asked Samira to deal with some of the more minor concerns on her own. It’s amazing how Samira’s waiting, Cheshire cat smile, has led to several instant recoveries. She giggles, watching younger students skitter away, having decided that their little scrapes don’t require urgent healing attention after all.

Now standing near the Infirmary entrance, Samira busies herself, folding linens with careful flicks of her wand. Wordless casting still requires quite a bit of focus.

The melodramatic scream of one of the patients announces the arrival of Oberon Lestrange. It's hardly a wonder the student was so shocked; Oberon's hand looks like it was run over by a hippogriff. A trail of bright, crimson blood drips from his fingers as he stands in the doorway. His eyes fall upon Samira, and he gives her a helpless shrug, gesturing to his injury with his good hand. "Can you believe it?" he asks nonchalantly.

The scream draws Samira’s attention, but the sight of Oberon’s maimed hand fully captures her bright-eyed interest. She draws towards him, studying his unnaturally bent fingers, their grotesque swelling, and the dripping blood with unsettling fascination. She giggles, peeking up at him at last. “Most impressive.” She glances side-ways off at Madam Spleen who still has her hands fairly full. Back up at Oberon, she says, “Shall I fetch Madam Spleen? You might need to wait a few moments. Or if you would like, I could attempt to patch you up.”

Oberon follows Samira's gaze to the nurse. He wrinkles her nose and shakes his head. "Nah. She looks busy. I have every confidence that you can handle this." He flashes her a smile that would seem completely at odds with the remarkable pain he must be in.

Samira looks far too pleased, smiling as if about to open Father Christmas’ first gift. “Let’s step over here then, shall we?” The other students staring at Oberon’s maimed fingers look greener by the moment. And no aide wants to clean up their sick. So upon reaching a cot in the corner of the Infirmary, Samira pulls the curtain around to shield them from sight. It doesn’t offer complete privacy, but they are shielded from prying eyes for the moment.

“Sit down and tell me, how did you hurt your hand?” she asks, already sitting down on the edge of the bed, next to the place she expects Oberon to take.

Oberon hops up onto the bed, holding his disfigured hand out in front of him. He doesn't seems concerned as droplets of blood fall and stain his slacks. At Samira's question, he gives her a wry smirk. "It's probably better if I don't tell you all the details. Wouldn't want to put you in an awkward position." He shrugs. "Let's just say my fist hit a wall, and leave it at that." Because that's all there is to tell, but it sounds much more impressive if that's only part of the story.

Samira laughs, never troubled by the unsavory things that some of the other Knights of Walpurgis might do. She shakes her head, as if simply entertained. “Alright then.” She focuses once more on his hand, studying the dripping blood. Her fingertips are feather-light as she takes his hand and guides him to turn it this way and that, letting her examine it. “Hm. I suppose I should simply attempt the patch-up spell. You aren’t about to bleed out. And when I last stemmed the flow of someone’s blood, Madam Spleen had a word with me.” Not even someone with their ears pressed against the curtain would overhear her words. They are for Oberon alone.

Oberon winces a little as she turns his had, but for the most part, he is handling the pain quite well. Her words bring a curious crinkle to his brow. "She was upset with you for stopping someone from bleeding?" He snorts a chortle. "She does remember that you're here to heal people, right?"

“True. But I used magic unfamiliar to her. That unsettles many, know?” Samira peeks up at him with a conspiratorial smile. But then, returning her attention to his wound, she lets her wand hover just above his first maimed finger. She intends to attempt healing bit by bit, knowing the patch-up spell isn’t meant for quite such intense damage. A bone-mending spell would be more appropriate. Madam Spleen would likely be fairly displeased to know she is attempting such things out from under her supervision. But Samira is too eager to see what she can accomplish given her opportunity. “Episky,” she says, quiet, but sharp. His finger grows warm. Warmer. Hot. Then cools at last.

Oberon's smile twists, taking on a shade of wickedness. Naturally, he's heard the rumours about the foreign girl and her supposed repertoire of Dark magic. His smile turns to a grimace as the bones of his middle finger snap back into place and begin binding together. "Not bad," he grunts. "But I think I'm bleeding pretty badly." No, he isn't. "Madam Spleen can't see us. Let's see what you've got, Prince."

It isn’t wise. Samira has received warnings already. But she can’t quite help herself in the face of such a tempting offer. His knuckles remain unaffected by the patch-up spell. Fixating on the crimson drops, she directs her wand and casts without speaking. The moment the spell is cast, the blood pauses, poised at the edge of falling. But then, the crimson heat begins to flow against gravity, seeping up his hand instead of down his fingers. The streams twist like wriggling, worm-like serpents, flowing up towards his wrist. Samira releases a slow, unsteady breath, fixated still on his blood.

Oberon watches in macabre fascination at how Samira manipulates his blood. "Fuck me," he curses. "Is that Dark magic?" He tilts his head, dipping it down to gaze directly at Samira's face. His eyes are slightly widened, pupils dilated with newfound excitement. "Will you teach me?"

Samira doesn’t respond at first, too focused on his blood. It twists around and wriggles down the tendons of his hand until at last returning to the broken flesh of his knuckles. There, it dives into his flesh – a sensation most would find highly unpleasant. The blood flow remains stemmed and she responds at last, “If anyone /ever/ found you casting such a spell, I would be expelled at once. Perhaps even imprisoned.”

Oberon shivers suddenly at the bizarre sensation of the blood re-entering his wounds. "Merlin's tits…" So even the cocksure Lestrange can be disturbed by something so unnatural. Still, he snorts softly and shakes his head. "Don't be ridiculous. First of all, you're not doing anything illegal. Don't listen to anyone that tells you Dark magic is against the law. Second…" He lifts his good hand to touch her chin, coaxing her to look up at him. "I'd never let that happen," he says with complete and unwavering certainty, as if he were the Headmaster himself.

Samira’s chin lifts at his touch. She watches him, blinking with a hint of wide-eyed surprise. The warm blood begins to leak from his knuckles once more. A hint of a smile returns to her lips. “Thank you, Oberon. But I have been warned. More than once. I would be expelled and I rather wish to graduate next year.”

"You do realize that my father is a Professor? He is also very close with the Deputy Headmaster." Oberon adopts his trademark cocky smirk. "You don't have anything to worry about. Besides, I'm not a fool. I wouldn't go flaunting your spell, nor would I tell anyone you taught it to me." He drops his voice to be nearly inaudible. "The Knights of Walpurgis exist to study magic that others are too afraid to pursue. You're one of us now. It's your duty to enlighten your fellow Knights."

Samira’s smile grows as Oberon persists. “Perhaps if Riddle asked me to teach you all, I would. But we would need to delve deep into theory first. It is not such an easy spell to master. Manipulating the flesh, blood, and bone is not so simple. It can go side-ways quite easily. If I had misfired just now, you would have begun bleeding from your eyes and ears, coughing on it, until Madam Spleen thought I’d tried to kill you.” Her eyes gleam as she reveals just how risky performing her spell just now was.

Oberon shrugs. "Isn't that how we learn every spell? Hell, a simple miscast transfiguration can turn someone's face into a foot. That's not very healthy, either. You shouldn't worry so much. The Knights can handle it. It's why we exist."

“I’ll consider it,” says Samira, lowering her gaze with a little smile. She lifts her wand once more and holds the tip poised over his hand. “Let’s finish up. Madam Spleen will likely call for me before long.” She pauses to make sure he’s ready – that he isn’t going to do anything else like reach for her chin – before she starts to heal his hand piece by piece.

Oberon purses his lips, for the moment keeping his silence while she works her magic. There is another slight winces as the next bone resets, but he has never been one to shy away from pain. Once his finger seems to be straightened out and it cools down, he gives it a flex. It's a little stiff, but much better than before. "There is nothing to consider," he finally says, a tone of command in his voice. "You're a Knight of Walpurgis. Knights do not hold out on their fellows. Maybe some of the younger Knights can't handle this yet. But that's just a matter of mastery…not withholding secrets."

Samira pauses in her mending spells to meet Oberon’s gaze. Her own dark eyes gleam with a hint of amusement. She tilts her head to study him, seemingly unmoved by the hint of command in his voice. Leaning closer, she says in a quiet, low tone, “I will consider it.” She relaxes back on an outstretched palm and watches him with a subtle smile.

"You took an oath," Oberon says in a low growl of warning. "Don't start trying to back out on your loyalties now. I like you, Prince. Don't put me in this position. It won't end well."

Samira’s eyes widen as Oberon’s persistence grows threatening. But, she seems more fascinated than frightened. Tilting her head, she murmurs, “That is the way of things then, is it? Standing fearsome at Riddle’s side, you enforce our oaths?”

"Tom's a smart lad, and he's got a vision I believe in. But he's still a lad, and he needs someone who can make his vision a reality." Oberon spreads his hands wide, presenting himself. "I'm that someone. You could be, too, in your own way. But you'll have to let go of this arrogance that only you deserve your little secrets. One day you'll need our trust and support, my little, Dark witch. This is the moment when you determine whether you'll have it, or whether you'll have enemies. Seems like a simple choice to me."

Too fascinating. Samira’s gaze shines with such keen interest. Even when she took her oath, she was smiling. Perhaps she never quite understood the gravity of it. She slowly shifts upon the cot beside him, easing her weight away from him. Leaning on her other hand, her shoulder lifts almost to her ear in a static half-shrug. Though her eyes are bright and watchful, her smile remains relaxed. “I have much esteem for Tom Riddle. I will discuss your request with him.”

Oberon chuckles softly, but there is no joy in the sound. He moves to lay his hand upon Samira's, only to tighten his grip and forcefully yank her wrist up into an uncomfortable position. "This is not a request, and you had best learn your place quickly. You think you've got Tom wrapped around your little finger, don't you? You don't know a thing about him." He squeezes tighter, looming dangerously close, his face inches from hers. "And you clearly don't understand a thing about me."

Samira gives a sharp, startled squeak as he yanks her hand, twisting it up over her head. But the din of the Infirmary behind the curtain easily drowns out such a sound. Her sharp, unsteady breaths come for his ears alone as well. Her smile has faded and a hint of caution shines in her eyes at last. Pain tightens her young features. She gives a muffled cry of protest, twisting slightly, but she doesn’t try to pull away less he truly fracture her delicate bones. Face slightly averted, she peeks up at him out of the corner of her eye. Her mask of relaxed assurance fully torn away, her eyes shine with vulnerability and alarm. “No. I’d never presume such of him. Or you,” she says with a noticeable Arabic accent. She speaks soft and hushed, as if trying to soothe him.

"Good," Oberon says through clenched teeth. Then, quite suddenly, he smiles with what appears to be great warmth. "I knew you were a smart one." He doesn't release her wrist just yet, but he lowers her arm to hold it between them, no longer twisting it painfully. "Things are changing, and the mudbloods aren't going to take it lying down. So it's important that we remember who our allies are. Right?"

The tension in Samira’s shoulders eases as Oberon lowers her arm, but the caution in her eyes doesn’t quite fade. “Yes, Oberon. I hadn’t forgotten. I simply… hadn’t realized so clearly what was expected of me. You and Tom only needed to ask.” Biting her lower lip, she tries to ease her wrist away. “You’re bruising me, Oberon,” she murmurs, gaze averted.

Oberon chuckles softly, as if the whole thing were just a funny misunderstanding. Then he leans in again, close enough that his breath is warm against her cheek as he whispers, "I did ask." He looks down at her wrist in his grasp. "Does it hurt? I thought you liked playing with fire. Or is that only until you actually get burned?"

Samira’s eyes close as Oberon leans so close. She doesn’t breathe. Not until she peeks up at him to say, “If I weren’t to heal my bruises, and Tom were to see them, what do you suppose he’d have to say, Oberon?” Gazing up into his eyes, she tries to pull her wrist from his grasp.

Oberon's eyes darken again, and his fingers clamp down tighter, digging into her flesh. "You mean bruises like these? Go ahead. Don't heal them. Show them to Tom. Tell him exactly what happened. What do you think he'll say?"

Samira twists, trying to stifle her pained cry. Her other hand tightens over the cot blanket. Leaning away, but no longer pulling, she peeks up at him. Her eyes shine bright with fright. She thought she knew what he’d say. But now she wonders. “If /he’d/ asked, I would have said yes. He knows that. You don’t need to hurt me.”

"Apparently I do, because you don't seem to understand what an oath means." Oberon slides off of the bed, turning to face her directly. "You seem to think it's all about playtime with Tom Riddle. But you didn't swear loyalty to Tom Riddle, you swore it to the Knights of Walpurgis. But apparently your word doesn't mean anything. Apparently you think you can dangle your little Dark spells in front of us and then laugh at us for wanting to learn them. That's not how loyalty works. So either you honour your oath, or I have to be the one to make sure you don't dare betray us further."

Samira keeps her head bowed, but peeks up at him as he rises. Sat on the bed, clinging to the blanket – small and vulnerable. Defeated. “I’ll teach you. I didn’t mean to show disloyalty. I didn’t. I’ve been loyal. Just recently, I protected Antonin from Oscar. The oath was why. Please, Oberon.” She closes her eyes, averting her face, but her hand remains lifted with her wrist in his grasp – as if in supplication.

"You think I want to do this?" Oberon continues, almost as if he didn't hear her pleas and contrition. "I like you, Prince. I thought we were allies, maybe even friends. Why do you put me in this position?"

Samira peeks up at him. “I like you too, Oberon. Even now. I’d rather be your friend. A friend to all of you. I like being a part of it all. The Knights of Walpurgis. I like being your Lady. I swear. I’ll teach you more dark arts theory. I’ll teach you to control blood.”

Oberon arches an eyebrow at the term "Lady". She's a Knight, not a Lady. But he lets it slide for now, focusing on the larger issue at hand. "Good. Good." His stony glare fades, instantly becoming that warm, friendly smile again. He loosens his grip on her wrist, but gently pulls her arm toward him to examine the damage before finally letting go. "I want to believe you. So I'll be keeping my eye on you. Don't let me down."

It will take time before the bruises fully show, but already her delicate, sunkissed flesh appears mottled with hints of red and purple. Samira keeps still, peeking up at him until he releases her arm at last. She pulls it close against her breast, shielding it with her other hand. “I won’t, Oberon,” she says, quiet and soft. “Just tell me when. Arrange a safe place this summer. I will teach you and whoever else you wish.”

"We'll have plenty of opportunities," Oberon says cheerfully. "The Knights will meet often for just this sort of thing." He pauses, hearing the click of Madam Spleen's heels outside the curtain and waiting for her to pass. Then he continues, all smiles and holding up his hand, his knuckles still split. "Thank you for this. It feels a thousand times better. I'll see you around, Prince."

Samira’s breath catches in her throat at the sound of Madam Spleen’s footsteps. Explaining the bruises without incriminating Oberon would be impossible. Releasing a sigh of relief, she lifts her gaze to Oberon once more, watching him with quiet caution. “And you, Oberon.” Once alone, she directs a well-cast 'Episky' at her own wrist. No trace of hurt remains and with a deep, steading breath, she returns to her duties with her relaxed smile perfectly in place.

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