Claudia Dubois
Thankful for Peace
Fri Mar 9, 2018 11:43

Although her parents had offered to rearrange their existing Thanksgiving plans, Claudia had vehemently reassured them this was not necessary. The last time her parents had visited the school, to listen to Claudia perform in the talent show, Dardanius had announced to everyone present that Marissa Kendrick was his girlfriend. She would prefer not to believe him capable of repeating this spectacle with his current… Claudia couldn’t even bring herself to complete the thought in her own mind. Neither could she entertain the notion of being present at the festivities herself, even with the guarantee that her own parents would not be coming. She didn’t like crowds, anyway, and there were certain students’ families she was keen to avoid. The Cetus commonroom would be blissfully empty right now, the fourth year assured herself as she descended the steps (thankfully returned to their usual working order) from the girls’ dormitories. Her optimism was not misplaced, as there were no other people to be seen. Perfect.

With a the promise of an uninterrupted afternoon of solitude - true enough, she had been on her own a lot at the start of term, but the situation was showing some signs of improvement, and besides, being alone by choice was quite different to passive loneliness - Claudia wove between the scattered bean bags and low tables to some comfy looking chairs just off to one side of the fire, which was flickering merrily at a most agreeable temperature. She had often considered this might be an optimum place in which to relax, but the currently peaceful area was more often than not populated by some of the younger students. In their absence, Claudia settled into a wide armchair, lowering her book bag - containing various supplies she might need for the next few hours - down beside her. Her uniform robes, superfluous today, were neatly hanging in her dormitory, but the young witch had nevertheless elected to wear robes: this set was fitted at the bodice, and expertly crafted of Cetus blue and silver damask that shimmered as she moved. She curled her legs up underneath her on the seat, and smoothed the fabric of her robes to fully cover her feet. She intended to start her well-deserved indulgence with a small pot of dried cranberries while she began reading her most recently purchased fiction (the majority of novels Claudia selected were along a theme of fiercely independent witches triumphing in their various quests; this one was no different), but paused in retrieving these items from her bag when she realised the most conveniently located surface was already occupied fully by a manuscript book left lying open.

Without conscious effort she followed the notes as they trailed along the staves, a melody forming in her mind. It was unpolished, some of the groupings were eclectic, and it was riddled with accidentals, but the tune flowed nicely even so. Curious to see who had written it, Claudia closed the book, revealing another beneath it: a spiral bound notebook with annotations that looked like spells and movements. Assuming they would be related to music - for no other reason than the pages were open as she’d found them - she cast her eyes briefly over the spells. The fourth year hadn’t yet tried implementing magic with her music, but she knew there were spells that would replay your piece back so you could be your own accompaniment, and that would change the key of an instrument, so she was certain there was much to explore in that area if she ever became sufficiently interested.

Although now she was paying attention to them, Claudia doubted they were music related spells - the first was visus retrorsum; her Latin was not as sharp now as it once had been, but that sounded more like a visual perspective altering spell. The second one, subvorso, translated to something like devastation. That didn’t sound friendly. Glancing up to make sure she continued to be alone, Claudia picked up the notebook to study it in more detail. Mostly it otherwise contained interviews with house elves, which, coupled with the manuscript book, suggested ownership to second year Andrew Tennant; his name written in both books confirmed her correctly drawn conclusions.

Claudia was perplexed. Nothing she knew about Drew suggested he would be researching Dark Magic. He did often sit here with Dade, however, and Claudia had noticed the youngest Farnon visiting that area of the library on more than one prior occasion; she spent a lot of time there, quietly working on not speaking to just about anyone in the entire school. She had considered doing some offensive spell research herself - she had not yet had the courage to attend Dueling Club despite her intentions to do so. Without the emotional support of a friend with her she lacked the confidence to put herself in such a vulnerable position - but had been too anxious to start.

No time like the present. Assured of her privacy, Claudia impulsively tore the relevant page from the notebook. She neatly folded it and placed it securely inside her book bag. As if this had not happened, she then resumed her task of clearing the table (she closed the books and dropped them on the seat of a neighbouring chair, freeing the more convenient flat surface), and placed on the table a tub of dried cranberries. Next she withdrew her novel from her bag, and set about rearranging her robes to cover her feet once more. She had barely opened to book to its first page when a sound nearby alerted her that she was no longer alone in the commons. Claudia looked up to ascertain who dared disturb her solitude.

(OOC: Coincides with Thanksgiving in the Diner. All mentions of Drew’s possessions approved by his author.)

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