Arthur and Ros
Hopefully that won’t be the last one.
Sun Jun 2, 2019 17:38

Ros was loath to admit it, but she relaxed slightly after the witch in front of her was no longer in direct contact with Arthur’s hand. Since the Wall Incident, she had been slightly wary of touching even Jessica, at least when she remembered Jessica was like this, and she had not liked Arthur shaking hands as though everything were normal.

“Very interesting,” said Arthur to the question.

“Fewer dungeons than we expected, frankly,” said Ros dryly. Suddenly embarrassed by the thought of Arthur’s nerve exceeding her own, she took half a step forward and proffered her own hand as well. “I’m Rosalie - Jessica’s mother.”

This was a statement which usually was responded to with smiles and praise for her daughter. Some would even go so far as to compliment her directly, giving her the credit for Jessica’s actions and inactions. This was all just - wrong.

“Yes,” said Arthur, returning to the tour as a subject. “Not many dungeons. That was good. But I was disappointed we didn’t get to see for ourselves more of where Jessica lives. She’s said things about disturbing artwork and decorative elements, and told us about inadequate bathing facilities.”

“Which might not be your school’s fault,” inserted Ros, a touch grudgingly. “Jessica isn’t old enough to be at boarding school yet, and she’s used to being more comfortable than she’d be at any school away from home - but rotting corpses and snakes aren’t really very appropriate decorations, especially if….” Ros faltered, paling slightly, before getting a firmer grip on herself. “If they most of the art we saw here.”

“Quite,” agreed Arthur. “I suspect that’s part of why the poor child couldn’t sleep at first - if it’s the case.”

He was, Ros thought, in an impossible position. There was no real way to intimidate this woman, or even speak up too forcefully for their daughter. He could offer money to improve things, but what if they then started seeing Jessica as a lever on a money pump? That, she imagined, was why he was trying to leave a door slightly cracked, to give her a way out, or to let her explain...but Jessica said she was a completely unreasonable bully, and if their discussions had gone the way Jessica had described them, it was a fair assessment, and when had Jessica ever lied to them? How long had Arthur and Ros struggled with how it was impossible to actually tell a child that honesty was not the best policy but how they simply needed Jessica to know that? She had been as transparent as air when she was little; they had had to work incredibly hard just to teach her caution and discretion. They had no reason not to believe Jessica, and very few ways to deal with the situation if, as probability suggested, Jessica was telling the truth. Ros slipped her hand into Arthur’s discreetly, and he gave it a small squeeze.

  • We agree on one thing already, thenDH Skies, Sat Jun 1 21:05
    Ah. The Hayleses. Selina had been in two minds about whether she ought to seek them out or not. Before Midterm, it had felt like things with Jessica were verging on the point where she would need to... more
    • Hopefully that won’t be the last one. — Arthur and Ros, Sun Jun 2 17:38
      • Lots of agreeing would be niceDH Skies, Mon Jun 3 18:41
        "Pleased to meet you," Selina smiled warmly, shaking Mrs. Hayles' hand. She wasn't sure what to make of the fact that she had seemed content to let her husband speak for them until that point, or... more
        • Yes, it would.Arthur and Ros, Mon Jun 3 22:40
          "It did seem a little in line with the rest of your aesthetic," said Ros, not unreasonably, Arthur thought, when Mrs. Skies asked why they had thought there might be dungeons. "There's torches and... more
          • "Well, some of us our aesthetic may be rather medieval, as you say, but I can assure you that our methods aren't," Selina smiled politely. Storybook witches it was then, in terms of the impression... more
            • It seems possible.Arthur and Ros, Sat Jun 8 20:31
              "That's a rather unscientific ground to build your - Houses? - on," remarked Arthur. "And if my prep school was anything to go by, the others would be happy to have her, so she could tell them how to ... more
              • *frantically lays more*Selina Skies, Tue Jun 11 03:22
                Selina was quite curious as to what Arthur Hayles would consider a scientific method for house placements, or indeed why he thought a scientific method was at all necessary for something that was... more
                • It may have gotten us a little further, but....Arthur and Ros, Tue Jun 11 11:09
                  "True enough," mused Arthur when Mrs. Skies said that switching allegiances was controversial. "Remember that first year we were married, Ros? When you went to church with your mama on Mother's Day?" ... more
                  • The ball in your mixed metaphor nowDH Skies, Sat Jun 15 22:55
                    “I would actively encourage it," Selina smiled, very pleased to hear both that Jessica had been expanding her reading about the magical world and that her father was interested in doing so too.... more
                    • Let's keep it rolling.Arthur and Ros, Sun Jun 16 18:20
                      Ros had no desire to sit on the chair which had just appeared from nowhere. It was not normal for chairs to appear from thin air. It was the kind of thing that happened in odd dreams, not in real... more
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