That's a funny way of saying 'hello'
Sat Jan 12, 2019 20:56

The first two words her new roommate spoke were enough to notify Zara to the fact that she was not American, even though those two words were ‘hello’ and Zara’s own name repeated back to her for confirmation. Both were said not only with an accent but with enough hesitation and… lack of other words around them that this all flagged up a non-native speaker. And then Johana-Leonie also added something that was… probably about where she was from, or what language she spoke? Zara didn’t recognise any of the words. She thought she had maybe said something that sounded like Dutch. Kir’s mom was Dutch. Kinda. In the same way her own was Irisih. As in no member of the family had set foot there for generations, but it was still a thing they talked about, and Kir’s mom even had a properly Dutch name which everyone messed up the pronunciation of. So, she knew that Dutch was a thing, and that ‘J’s in it went ‘ee’ and that you had to pronounce an ‘e’ if you saw it at the end of a word.

“Yep,” she confirmed with a thumbs up when the girl clarified her name. Not being used to hearing ‘tz’ as a blend and against the backdrop of the noise in the hall, her brain tuned out the unfamiliar sound. And anyway, she wouldn’t have minded - pronouncing her name with an accent was different to pronouncing it wrongly.

“Johana-Leonie?” she repeated, trying her best to copy the girl’s pronunciation but not mimic her accent, which meant that the consonants stayed more or less where she had put them but the vowels became East Coast American.

“I’m from Boston,” she added. She drew a quick rough tapered square in the air and pointed to the righthand side up near the top, “Boston is on the East Coast of the USA,” she added. She wasn’t sure how much she should simplify things for Johana-Leonie. She didn’t want to patronise her - after all, she had come to an English speaking school, so possibly her level was pretty decent. She had lapsed into her own language when introducing herself, but maybe she was just nervous or homesick or something. Zara guessed they’d have to find their level as they went. She continued to give her a broad and encouraging smile - even though ‘working out how much English she speaks’ wasn’t something she’d figured would be on the cards with her new roommate, she wasn’t too worried by it. At some point Zara might make things too difficult, or she might assume that Johana-Leonie couldn’t do something that she could. She would probably make mistakes, but hopefully being in the friendly and diplomatic house meant they could work through those.

“Are you excited for school?” she asked.

  • Auf WiedersehenJohana Leonie Zauberhexen, Sat Jan 12 16:59
    OOC-- I don't speak German well IRL so please forgive any grammar errors. IC- Johana Leonie was sad to learn that she and Hilda would being different houses, although the prospect of finding others... more
    • That's a funny way of saying 'hello' — Zara, Sat Jan 12 20:56
      • Genau!Johanna Leonie Zauberhexen, Sun Jan 13 01:43
        "Ja!" Johana Leonie said when her new roommate pronounced her name sort of almost right. She'd gotten the J right at least, and that was pretty surprising in its own way. Then she said a bunch of... more
        • Uh...maybe?Zara, Mon Jan 14 06:24
          "Potions," Zara supplied, when Johana-Leonie did a clear mime of stirring a cauldron. "It's ok," she assured her, when the other girl apologised. She didn't understand any of the rest of the words... more
          • Du bist nett.Johana Leonie Zauberhexen, Mon Jan 14 17:33
            Johana Leonie wasn't sure if everyone in the world was this patient, but she was amazed at her luck so far. Between Hilda and now Zara, Johana Leonie couldn't imagine having gotten any more fortunate ... more
            • I'm not what?Zara, Mon Jan 14 19:52
              "Yes," Zara confirmed, when Johana-Leonie asked if she understood. "That's cool," she smiled, slipping into the more colloquial way of talking because it was just such a habitual response. Zara found ... more
              • Nein, Nett!Johana Leonie Zauberhexen, Mon Jan 14 21:31
                "Ja, coole," Johana Leonie laughed, using the borrowed form. "Making potions! Das ist das word! Making." She was satisfied that her description of her brother was appropriate when Zara offered that... more
                • .... neat? Zara, Wed Jan 16 07:48
                  Zara grinned upon hearing Johana-Leonie utter the word "cool," or something very like it. If she had mastered that word already, they would be just fine. "At home," Zara replied, when Johana-Leonie... more
                  • *smiley face* Nett!Johana Leonie Zauberhexen, Thu Jan 17 16:30
                    Johana Leonie was fairly certain Zara was making some pretty snipped sentences and she wasn't sure if she was more grateful or embarrassed. She was proud of her German heritage and language, but it... more
                    • Nice?Zara, Fri Jan 18 06:52
                      “Nice,” Zara smiled, as Johana-Leonie explained that they made both Muggle and magical remedies. The word ‘medicine’ was similar enough that she assumed Johana-Leonie was saying it in English, just... more
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