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Raine Collindale, Teppenpaw
In my element
Fri Feb 16, 2018 22:16

Raine entered the Defence classroom and took her seat. Professor Nash went to start the lecture and… then didn’t. He wasn’t saying a word to them. But the words on the board quickly made it clear why. Non-verbal spellcasting. That was interesting. Her heart momentarily froze when she saw the words ‘pop quiz’ but it didn’t seem to be a written quiz, rather just that they had to try non-verbal magic.

His lack of a theoretical introduction did little to put her off, and theory had never been her strong point. She had done the required reading, some of which talked about focus, which she could relate to, and some of which tried to analyse the composition of a spell, which she could not. To her magic was just magic, it worked because it did. It was something that you felt and you honed your ability by doing it. Like practising for the circus… Someone describing the trick they wanted you to do was almost always impossible, and the whys and hows of how your body could bend that way or the effect of gravity and all the rest of it didn’t help you improve. Training did. Practising over and over again. Ok, you sometimes needed a little pointer - you’re bringing your head up too soon, it’s throwing your balance, you didn’t get your leg high enough - but you never needed to understand your own physiology to make your body do those incredibly things.

Raine decided to work on the levitation charm, as that was fairly easy and she readily had the materials. She lay a piece of parchment on her desk. She quite liked the silence. She felt comfortable in it. Whenever she had a performance, she had to seek silence. It wasn’t usually really possible with all the hubbub of a full circus tent going on around her, but she had to go into her mind and find that perfectly still place where the noise didn’t exist. Her act required her absolute focus on only herself and what her body was doing. Her ability to focus had served her well in class, although it was muted by the effects of all she found problematic in school… Her self-consciousness and her discomfort. Her sense that these were not skills she was good at. But she had passed the Defence CATS exam. She was starting to realise how competent she was at the practical elements of all that was asked of her. Her focus had been a strength she was previously unaware of. She knew she used it in her act but she had struggled to see the links between the skills she used in her everyday life and what she was asked to do in the classroom - it had all seemed so alien and so unlike the things she was good at. However, now, in the stillness, gathering her thoughts and her concentration, with minimal cares or distractions, it felt familiar, felt like preparing herself for a show.

'Wingardium leviosa,' she thought, her wand flowing easily in time with the words. The paper shivered, as if a breeze had passed over it. Within a few tries, it was hovering an inch or so above the desk.

Raine let it drop, and took a breath, allowing herself a moment outside of her focus in order to rest. She looked up and saw that Professor Nash was nearby. He seemed to be watching everyone and making notes. She turned back to her parchment, but it was hard to get properly back into the zone when she knew she was being evaluated. People often found it strange that someone who performed for a living could be so shy, and so self-conscious about being watched, but this was so different. The circus was a show. She was behind makeup and sequins, up high and too far away to feel the individual scrutiny of a pair of eyes. Being watched up close was different.

'Wingardium leviosa,' she tried, but Professor Nash was intruding on her concentration. She tried to push him to the back of her mind. She found the feeling again. She was well-practised in doing so, after all, regardless of nerves. 'Wingardium leviosa.' The parchment hovered cleanly and clearly above the desk. She breathed a sigh of relief and looked around. Professor Nash was marking something on a piece of paper. He nodded to her and moved on, and she breathed a sigh of relief.

  • Advanced: The sound of silence Professor Nash, Fri Feb 16 12:23
    Daniel Nash was a verbose individual. He knew this about himself and, by now, most of his advanced students knew it about him as well. This was, in part, intentional. He knew the psychological theory ... more
    • Do I get technical credit for this?Joe Umland, Teppenpaw , Sat Feb 17 22:10
      ”Non-verbal magic’s a massive pain in the – feet,” Julian had said when she and John had been discussing upper years with Joe. ”Like you’re trying to wear really strappy stilettos all evening to one... more
      • This doesn't exactly play to my strengthsKyte Collindale, Pecari, Wed Apr 4 11:10
        Kyte entered the Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom chattering away to Ben. He didn’t particularly notice Professor Nash’s lack of talking. He wasn’t really one to stop talking or start paying... more
    • In my element — Raine Collindale, Teppenpaw, Fri Feb 16 22:16
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