Not so much
Sun Apr 8, 2018 14:37

She had not anticipated Marley being brought into the conversation; Claudia knew her cheeks were burning at the mention of her ex-best friend’s name - there were some emotional responses that were still impossible to keep under control, especially when provoked without warning - though the cause of her embarrassment was less certain. Perhaps she was ashamed of neglecting that friendship when it had withstood many precious differences in opinion, or perhaps it was because that, for once, Claudia had been unable to persuade Marley that there were valid opinions on the matter besides her own.

She had not intended to be unaccepting of Marley, but that fateful conversation had gone as inexplicably wrong as this current discourse. Rather than address Claudia’s genuine and honestly expressed confusion and discomfort, Marley had become quickly frustrated, and explicitly told Claudia it wasn’t her problem. Instead of continuing to argue with Marley, she had quit the conversation, feeling perplexed and upset, and thus their interactions had ceased. It was as if Marley didn’t care enough about Claudia’s friendship to acknowledge that she was struggling with foreign concepts. Claudia had been willing to try - she had asked questions that Marley had not answered - but Marley had evidently placed Teal in higher appreciation than Claudia; Danny had done the same with Holland. Now they dared to use this against her? Claudia’s fingers twitched around the handle of her wand. “I’m far more accepting of nonconformity than many of my peers,” she countered acidly, “something you seem intent on discovering for yourself.”

She was decidedly better off with her current friends: Connor, who had a firm understanding of the necessities of propriety, who was respectful to Claudia, and who had the grace to apologize when he found himself in the wrong, and Caleb, who went out of his way to comfort her even when she was a stranger to him, and whose attentions has not yet waned. While she was not yet sufficiently acquainted with Nolan to praise his integrity, his unwavering politeness and apparent dedication to his family were indicators than he was unlikely to subject Claudia to the disdain she had suffered from Marley and Holland.

It was here, in this very theater, that Claudia had first been told, “Fighting is a two sided thing, you understand?” Ruben may well have been excusing his own actions rather than advocating a rational approach to conflict resolution, but she did understand, now. Holland was fighting for their right to be and do whatever they liked, whilst Claudia was supporting a cause that placed little emphasis on individual freedom to the benefit of the group. The fourth year felt she understood what Dardanius and Holland were fighting for, and she pitied them, but it still felt as though Holland would rather pass judgment on Claudia’s culture, and misinterpret her past actions - which really had nothing to do with them - than make an effort to understand the argument from Claudia’s point of view.

“I don’t see what’s so civilized about a prejudiced society intent on oppressing not only its members, but anyone with whom it comes into contact,” Holland said, confirming Claudia’s suspicions.

Claudia seethed, a sharp fury igniting within her. She was done receiving insinuations of prejudice and bigotry as a result of meeting the high standards of society to which some people could never aspire. Her family had flourished for generations, producing teachers, Healers, investing in small business to promote growth and development, donating to charities, providing employment for the less fortunate, each heir in turn fathering a new generation to further improve their civilization. They did not discriminate against color or creed, health or handicap, and they shared the wealth amassed by hard work and associated success. Being a part of such a supportive and influential system was a gift, a genuine privilege, and Claudia abhorred any interpretation that assumed otherwise. It was insulting, to herself and to every witch and wizard who had ever benefited from this global community. “You don’t see what is civilized about my society? Allow me to enlighten you.” While she spoke, Claudia’s fingers tightened around her wand handle. In a swift, fluid movement she pulled it from her bag and cast “Coencium!”

This spell had not been in The Malevolent Manual (3rd ed.); Claudia had discovered it when researching perspective altering spells. Originally she had encountered the Hanging Mirror jinx, which turned the victim’s vision upside-down and backwards, and detailed alongside it was the Dopplevision spell that enabled the caster to see, from a distance, through the eyes of their vessel. Further investigation on this spell had introduced Claudia to a whole genre of perception-altering spells: those that distorted vision or impeded sound detection, that inverted sensitivity to heat, that rendered known languages indecipherable. The chapter on mental manipulation had largely gone over Claudia’s head; as intelligent as she was for a fourth year, there were apparently still concepts too complex for her to understand. Yet the Walk in My Shoes spell, as it was poetically named, promised to make redundant the need to explain one’s point of view. Successful execution of the spell enabled the target to perfectly perceive a matter from the caster’s perspective. The accompanying notes had described a fully cohesive transferal of thoughts, opinions and relevant sentiments on any given issue, to fully convey a perspective without the need for discussion or demonstration. It had been invented for moments such as this.

  • But are you going to? - Holland, Sun Apr 8 10:52
    Holland managed not to scoff at Claudia’s assertion that they had talked Danny out of kowtowing to pureblood society: they did not agree. That dissatisfaction had preceded Danny and Holland’s... more
    • Not so much - Claudia, Sun Apr 8 14:37
      • I have to insist - Holland, Sun Apr 8 16:12
        [ OOC: Effects of the spell confirmed by Claudia’s author, all godmodding approved. Content warning for homophobia/transphobia. ] The instant the spell struck, the benefits of Claudia’s society... more
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