Prof. Estelle Blair-West
In need of a drink or two
Tue Jan 16, 2018 15:04

Tonight was supposed to be a proper social event. The new family of four had planned (well, okay, Estelle and Liam were the only ones involved in said planning) to attend the Opening Feast together. It would be Dustin’s first Opening Feast, since Estelle had been on maternity leave and uncomfortably close to popping last September, which meant it would also be Theo’s first Opening Feast as a big brother.

The kindly Mrs. Bates, Liam’s long-time housekeeper at their British estate, had contributed her opinion in picking outfits for the kiddos, which Estelle had found quite helpful. Seemed she’d barely gotten used to the tininess of baby clothes and then Theo was too big for them, and now, with Dustin, her brain was back to square one. How did babies - even eleven-and-a-half-month-old babies - have such tiny feet yet noodley legs? She was Old Enough (numbers pending) by now that it shouldn’t have come as a surprise, but it still did, probably helped along by the bizarre fact that Dustin had been inside her last year. Which was also something that shouldn’t be bizarre, considering how Sex Ed was among her responsibilities at RMI, but still. It would never not be bizarre, she was pretty sure.

Unfortunately, Theo had decided at the last possible moment to go into a grump, which she had pierced together from his teary gasping words was basically because he did not want to be a good big brother and help introduce Dustin to RMI, nope not in the slightest, he wanted Mummy and Daddy’s laps all to himself.

...Okay, her interpretation was a bit of a stretch. The most coherent phrase they got out of him was “No! No Dust!” at a volume that cued the latter to start crying. Caught in a mess of snot and noise, and with literally minutes to spare, Estelle and Liam had exchanged a Look and decided to split up. Judging by the shriek she heard from Theo as she stepped into the fireplace alone, that wasn’t the outcome he had been expecting.

So Estelle had wound up by herself, silently charming the remnants of ash and miscellaneous child-ooze off her olive blazer while less silently informing the model skeleton in her office of the very unwanted change in plans. Roderick the skeleton had no opinion to contribute. Just as well, because she had enough opinions already.

Stalking off towards the Diner, she managed to make it into a seat at the staff bonfire without speaking to anyone. Kazimieras and Samuel were sitting to her right and conversing with surprising animation, however, so she couldn’t help overhearing. Something about whether a goblin had originally stolen a moonstone that had previously been in possession of a West Coast centaur herd and thus set off a century-long feud or whether the stone had just been misplaced and had the same effect. Ridiculous.

Her irritated snort caught the attention of Kazimieras, and she returned his offer to join in the debate with a headshake. “Sorry, but definitely not. What does a debate on that mean, anyways? The oral histories of both races are always going to conflict, because that’s the nature of warfare. Doesn’t matter if spectators reach a finite conclusion; each side will always use it against the other.” This was met with a thoughtful frown from Kaz and a… whatever from Samuel. (He did not have the most distinct of facial expressions.) The Polish professor then began to talk again, with what Estelle assumed was going to become the spiraling type of conversation he was known for. Thank goodness Toby got up and started his speech then.

Estelle still wasn’t quite sure what she thought of Toby - that was, not until he was already talking, at which point the random thought occurred to her that he seemed like he would be fantastic with children under the age of RMI’s student populace (and possibly only them), at which point the predictable thought of how unfortunate it was that her oldest son apparently had a grudge against her youngest, at which point she realized that she had been scowling ferociously. She did nothing to change that until the house-elves started coming around. They weren’t the target of her Theo-induced grump. They were the source of food.

She felt better after she had a bowl in hand, heavy with clam chowder and a couple thick slices of garlic bread balanced on the wide brim (but still not as heavy as a toddler) (or a baby, for that matter). “Do you see any coffee around here?” she quizzed her neighbour, glancing to the left this time so as to avoid getting sucked into any more hypothetical goblin theft discussions. “Or wine, that would be better, but I’m guessing nothing’s changed in beverage policy since last term.” The tone of her Aussie-accented voice clearly said that this was a travesty.

  • Staff Bonfire (nm) - Busy, Busy House Elves, Sun Jan 14 11:34
    • In need of a drink or two - Prof. Estelle Blair-West, Tue Jan 16 15:04
      • In need of a hand or two - Celia Hier (faculty spouse), Tue Jan 16 18:44
        Please let this year be boring, Celia implored silently to whatever might be listening as she crammed what felt like enough provisions for a small army into the diaper bag. Admittedly, it would be... more
        • I can spare some of mine - Estelle, Fri Jan 26 23:25
          Estelle sighed loudly, but conceded with a grin that the younger woman was in the right. Wine and fetuses didn’t mix well. Or not after the first trimester, at least, although she hadn’t experimented ... more
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