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Jemima Wolseithcrafte
Go team!
Tue Feb 9, 2016 02:22

‘Physical challenge.’ The description worried Jemima, though more for Owen than herself. She didn’t really like sports but they had been an unavoidable part of being home with Ingrid once everyone else had already left for school. Sure, now she was in her teens she was becoming less and less convinced that her round face and dimply knees were ‘just baby fat,’ and that as well as getting the odd nose out in the family, she also wasn’t quite built like the rest of them, but she could run and swim and fly if she had to without dropping down dead. Owen possibly couldn’t. The school had to know he had asthma, and she hoped they’d make some kind of allowance but she was anxious and she knew Owen well enough to know he would be too. He worried about bothering Andrew at night when his breathing was bad. If he was singled out, or the rest of the team had to make up for him somehow, he’d feel totally humiliated. Or he’d try to avoid it happening and then hurt himself. If the school did that, she was going to protest. She might have been the odd duck in most ways but she was a Wolseithcrafte; she knew how to protest.

He seemed worried whilst they waited for the instructions, even having to take his inhaler. Jemima swallowed. There was a non-flying option, which sounded better, but it still sounded potentially exerting. Owen though, seemed confident he could do that, and requested Chloe to place him in that group. Jemima really wanted to go with him, but she knew it made sense to mix up ages, and that she might have to go into one of the flying groups. It wasn’t her first choice but she’d do if it she had to. Being the middle beans though seemed to work in their favour; they weren’t small enough to need protecting, nor big enough to be able to protect someone else.

“Sounds good to me!” she grinned happily at Chloe.

Once they were waiting in the Cascade Hall, she slipped her hand into Owen’s under the table to give it a reassuring squeeze. It felt a little on the late side but she knew this still wouldn’t be his favourite thing in the world to be doing. She only wished she could show support so simply to Chloe. Jemima had heard that she’d been late back to school because someone in her family had died - and not someone old, but like… her step brother or something. Jemima didn’t know what that felt like. The only people she’d known to die had been elderly aunts whom she hardly knew. Most of the time, although everyone said proper things and looked sad, it felt somewhat natural, and not really all that bad. This was different. She was sure Chloe had a hole in her heart right now but Jemima didn’t know her well enough to say or do anything about it. She’d tried to think of nice things she could bring to the challenges to show some kind of support but had drawn a blank, with everything either seeming to vague and along the lines of ‘yay, team-mateship’ for Chloe to understand the gesture, or - if it had the clarity required - seemed too weird and overly personal for someone she hardly knew. Jemima hated knowing someone was hurting but not knowing what to do about it.

“Maybe we should brainstorm ideas?” she suggested whilst they waited. “Like, what different ways they might have hidden the objects, and what spells would come in handy.”

Once the challenge begun, she and Owen had more waiting to do, until the first part of the team had retrieved the map. Whilst they’d been waiting, she had tried to decide a strategy - whether it was better to go to the furthest object and work their way back towards the centre, or to work outwards. She thought the latter would be slightly more efficient, as they wouldn’t go out further than they needed, although she supposed ultimately it depended whether their object was past the midline or not, which she currently had no way of knowing.

“That’s the nearest,” she pointed to one on the map. “I doubt they’d be so kind but we can hope….” She made a note to talk to Ingrid afterwards to find out whether the objects were staying in the same places between groups or moving around so that each group had an equal level of distance to cover in order to find theirs. She held her wand, even though their group wasn’t facing any of the booby traps - the overly still atmosphere of the maze, and the knowledge that things had been leaping out at her team-mates, was enough to put her on edge.

They arrived at the first hidden object. The space was quite large, a square boxed off by hedges. The object could be physically hidden in the bushes, or magically hidden in mid-air. She deployed the first spell from their list - in all her craft ventures with Ginger and Lauren, she had discovered a spell to shed glitter from the end of her wand. Her first attempt had memorably been a bit over-enthusiastic, more like a glitter-splosion that had left their possessions coated. She tried to focus the same force now, sending a cloud of sparkling gold dust over the area. Most of it fell to floor but near one corner it had settled in the shape of a cauldron.

“Finite incantatem,” she cast, tapping the cauldron. It popped into existence, black, still glittery and bearing a large number fourteen. “Urgh, I really hope they move them between each group, otherwise Theodore’s team gets it practically left on the doorstep!” Jemima didn’t really care about winning or about beating her siblings, but she cared about it being a fair fight. “Ok, what next?” she asked Owen, as it was his turn to choose both a direction and a spell.

  • Whatever . . . you sayCameron Dempsey, Wed Feb 3 14:33
    “That’s fine with me” Cameron said. He wasn’t much of a walker, or a runner, really anything involving his legs. If he’d thought about it he would have said that legs were the absolute worst limb but ... more
    • Go team! — Jemima Wolseithcrafte, Tue Feb 9 02:22
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