1995-10-21: A Sirius Interlude

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Sirius_icon.gif Siobhan_icon.gif

Scene Title A Sirius Interlude
Synopsis Siobhan ducks into the Broomsticks for a hot drink before running her errands. She meets up with Sirius and manages to snag dinner invites for the next week, among other things.
Location Hogsmeade, Three Broomsticks
Date October 21, 1995
Watch For Mentions of Things and yet another 'adult' making Sio snort her butterbeer.
Logger I am the Bad Wolf.

Saturday afternoon sees the first of Siobhan's valuable free time since her return to the land of the third dimension. So, because the young professor is apparently incapable of sitting still, she takes the time to get a few errands done that she meant to do earlier in the week. Dressed in a Muggle's dark jeans, converse shoes and tight violet sweater - all hidden beneath a woolen charcoal pea coat and silver fluffy scarf - she ambles down the path to Hogsmeade and into the village proper. Even with a charm against the drizzling rain, it's still colder than she'd anticipated and so she ducks into the Broomsticks first. A nice warm butterbeer - or maybe a finger of Scotch if they have it - will make the whole rest of the day much more bearable.

Too late. Dung and Sirius already cleaned the 'Sticks out of Scotch. Or was it the Firewhiskey? Or then again maybe not. Rosmerta knows better than to let Dung have too much and maybe she's leery of letting Black get too raucous. At any rate, Sirius isn't far into his cup, seeing as he's sort of on duty and he did kind of remind Dung he was up for patrol. "Siobhan," calls out the mutt when he sees Miss Noble enter the pub.

The sound of her name startles Sio. Even just a week of 'Professor Noble' being shouted, whined or growled has already seen it start to become a habit. Brown eyes scan the pub's patrons as she pauses mid-stride, trying to locate the source of the call. Really, the only people who use her first name in public anymore are her parents, her brothers and - "Sirius!" Her destination is immediately altered and though the greeting in her voice and her smile is genuine, there is something wary about her eyes. "Have you been terrorizing Madame Rosmerta's customers again?"

"I grew tired of chasing my tail out on high street," Sirius says with a wide grin before kicking a chair out for Sio to take. "So yes. I have been terrorizing the masses. Amazing how many people get sight of a face, then can't wait to be shot of them. You just missed Dung. I had to prod him back to the grind before he was late." Unreliable bloke, but good information.

Siobhan doesn't resist the strong urge to roll her eyes - she's not with a student or Snape, so there's no one to call her on bad manners - and takes the kicked out seat with a sigh. "Dung's a menace." She flags down Rosmerta and with a fond grin and a few minutes spent enduring the witch's fussing over her ('We thought you was dead, girl! It's bleedin' good to see you. How's that scoundrel of a brother of yours?') manages to order a warm mug of butterbeer. When her gaze next shifts to Sirius, the barkeep is gone and there's a dry edge of humor to her unsmiling expression. "He talked about a meeting in earshot of a Death Eater, you know." Her voice is as quiet as it is dry. "Bragging to some doxy or other." But since no disaster has crashed down the world thusfar, there has to be more to it. When Rosmerta returns with her butterbeer, she takes a long draw from it and finishes only when they're alone again. "Obliviate is such a handy spell."

"But he's a good sort of menace.. Alright so not really, but his information comes in handy," Sirius points out as Sio takes a seat. A smile tugs at the corners of his mouth while Rosmerta fusses over Sio. Aw, it's cute. His expression turns into something more serious when conversation resumes. "I know, he's been spoken to about it and if it happens again, we'll be setting Moody on him." He studies the contents of his mug before swilling it down, "Besides, Dung should stop chatting up the witches, he hasn't a chance." A snort is given in lieu of a laugh in regards to obliviate.

The idea of siccing Moody onto poor Dung is a delightful one. It brings a wicked, wolfish smile to Siobhan's face, though she tones it down after a swig of her chosen beverage. "Dung wouldn't have a chance with the rubbish bin." It's another dry remark, though this time it's softened with a sort of conspiratorial look shared with one of her brother's idols-turned-friends. "You ready for the party tomorrow?" The question is lightly spoken, but the wariness has returned to her posture.

"That doesn't stop Dung from trying, bless him," Sirius says, setting his mug aside. "I'm always ready for a party. Already got the crackers and place settings tended to." Clasping his hands together, he leans forward. At first he appears all conspiratorial, then asks seriously, "How are you coping these days? It's been a busy summer now start of term for you."

The superficial small-talk comes easily to Siobhan - being raised by her mother had to have some effect after all - but the sudden transition to seriousness strips her of that defense. Suddenly the inside of her mug seems to be very interesting. "Busy doesn't cover the half of it," she mumbles, the sound strangely augmented by the shape of the glass. Another drink of the butterbeer and then when the mug is set down again, Sio turns to face Sirius' seriously seriousness. When even that string of nonsense doesn't help, she lets her shoulders sag. "I gave my last report to Dumbledore already." She doesn't have to say more. Sirius was there for some of those Jack-less Order meetings where Siobhan's painting had given the latest news on enemy movements. "But I suspect that'll all come out at the party, if it hasn't already." Leaning back in her chair and scrubbing her face with both hands, the youngest Noble looks old and tired. "Teaching's been good, comparatively." She's been expanding her vocabulary recently - though not by choice - and it shows, a little. "Never thought I'd see a practical use for all the … stuff I watched for."

Sirius's smile is dry, and rueful. "It's not an easy way to come to understanding that yes, all that you've learned is important and practical. Some people are more enthusiastic than others about trial by fire. For James, Remus and I, we learned quickly the fight was serious. When our friends starting dying and turning up missing… well… you lot are now seeing what it was like for us. It was more fun in the beginning when we could all have a laugh and act as if all would be well at the end of the day." A forced smile comes into play as he raps his knuckles against the tabletop, "Enough of that. Doing alright with readjusting to life outside of canvas? The students being good to you? I know Dumbledore has faith in your abilities, but I am still surprised he took the bold move in putting you in as professor. I think you must be the youngest ever."

Siobhan snorts once at mention of Remus Lupin. "Don't suppose Lupin would much care for the comparison, but he always did have a problem taking me seriously." At least when she said things he didn't like. Still, thoughts of the 'Marauders' Jack told her all sorts of wonderful tales about as a kid bring to mind something else important. "Listen, Sirius." She leans forward, bracing elbows on the table and lowering her voice. "Tomorrow's party is going to be rough enough as it is. Whatever you see or hear in there… Just try to think about things before you open your mouth, yeah?" She's intent on this. "I promise you can yell at me all you want to afterwards, just… Yeah." And with that oh-so-eloquent conclusion, she shrugs and turns to lift her mug to him in a silent salute before draining it. "The Gryffindors are convinced I'm evil - well, except Ron. I'm pretty sure he thinks I'm nuts - but that's nothing new. I've got a couple who need to be taught that I won't take their shit just because I'm young, but overall I've really enjoyed it." And she has. As for Dumbledore… "He made the right decision, in the end." Is that? Yes, there's just a little bit of smugness to that smile of hers.

Sirius smirks, "I can't make any promises. You know how hot headed I get." At least he admits it, and he DOES make attempts to restrain himself. It just… doesn't always work out. There's that whole thing in the brain that tells the mouth to stop, yeah, that tends to short circuit and fail. "I'm sure that'll stay the case for a bit. Then there's the students that won't take you seriously because you just shared classes with them last term. I think in a way, picking you over someone more experienced was a good move. The age factor may prove beneficial. Sort of a better teaching aide to students that just because they're young doesn't make them immune to what is going on around them."

"I do know." Siobhan sighs and gives Sirius a Look. "If it gets out of line I'll silence you both." No, she does not clarify the both. Instead, she flags down Rosmerta again and orders another mug of butterbeer, pausing to leave Sirius an opening to place an order himself if he so chooses. "Torrington was sixteen. Harry was fourteen." She makes those statements of fact, reaching for her fresh mug and wetting her suddenly dry mouth. "If it takes me being their age to make them realize that it doesn't matter how old they are, I'm fine with that." Another drink. "I have enough experience to make sure they know how to defend themselves and that they know what to watch out for." Last lesson covered that pretty damn well. "The theory side sucks, though." Never was much of one for the book-y stuff. "What about you? Ever thought about teaching?"

"You'd think the lot of them would have taken that poor girl's death a little more seriously," Sirius leans back and rakes a hand through his hair, declining a refill from Rosmerta. "From all Harry's told me of his time at Hogwarts, well, children are mean little buggers. Speaking from experience. Some things just don't sink in. It's the whole mentality of 'it will never happen to me.' Theory never was fun, until it became time to write essays. You can have a lot of fun with essays. I always made my professors sorry they set the assignment." A laugh barks out, "You're joking right? Me teach? Parents will never let me near their children."

Siobhan snorts, just barely avoiding butterbeer up the nose. Grabbing a napkin, she dabs at her lips and gives Sirius a sharp look. "You shouldn't need Harry to tell you that stuff, mate. You were a rotten little shit as a kid." It's a lesson several 'adults' have had to learn, recently. It's very difficult to maintain 'adult' status with someone when their siblings knew you at school. It's a Baby Sister Thing. There's a bit of amusement in that statement, but it's tempered by personal experience with one of his 'victims'. Still, she softens it with a grin. "Good thing you grew up, though." Hint? Was that a hint? Possibly, but Siobhan moves on without clarifying. "After the big lesson yesterday I think more of them may be convinced. I woner if I have to assign essays. Is there a requirement for them or anything?" Cause if she doesn't make them write them, she doesn't have to read them. Or try to decipher them. "Why not? It's not like you're actually guilty of murder or anything. If they can hire Lockhart, there's no reason you couldn't."

"I fondly remember myself as an arrogant little berk, granted that hasn't changed much since." Seeing as Sirius matured in some ways, in others? Not so much. Hoorah for inbreeding and stunted mental states. Oh wait, Sio thinks he grew up? That's hilarious. "You're asking the wrong bloke. I'm sure you should, just to test how much they know or at least how well they can convince you of what they've learned." Isn't the latter the actual point of essays anyway? "Lockhart, while I hear of what an imbecile he was, did not spend years at Azkaban making nice with Dementors while the rest of the world believed him guilty of murder."

This time Siobhan does end up with butterbeer out her nose. Good thing she's still got her napkin! "At least you admit it," she gasps out between laughing and coughing. "But they can convince me of what they've learned by something much less headache-inducing. Like actually casting. Or - ooooooh." If this were a Muggle cartoon film, a quickly-sketched light bulb would appear and flash right over Sio's head. "I can always make them choose topics and make presentations - have them stand up and teach the stuff they've researched. I think I heard that somewhere before, maybe? That you learn best by teaching to someone else." Maybe she heard it and maybe she just thinks she did. Either way, it's a method of getting around at least some of those pesky essays. "No, but in the end he went insane and you were proven innocent. Given those two options, I'd still pick you." But the parents - not to mention the school board of governors - might indeed have Issues (if not Subscriptions). She leans back in her chair, a calculating look on her face. "But maybe - I wonder…" A smile grows on her face - a smile that Sirius might recognize by now as one that never means anything good. "Mister Black, how would you feel about taking your pranking expertise to the professional level?"

"I'll be the first to admit it. I've had years of nothing but time on my hands to remember how horrid I was as a child." Pleasant memories were not so pleasant, when thinking of what became of his friends. The constant dwelling was most unhealthy for a mind like Sirius's, but it did allow him to keep sane. Well, as sane as he's capable of being. The smile the animagus gives Sio is far off, as if he were in another place for a few moments, "Yes. That's an approach to give them. Some people learn more by doing than copying lines." He drapes his arm casually over the back of his chair as he regards Sio, "Perhaps, but you're not most people. You also have a heavy bias factor going. Oh dear, you're getting that look your brother gets when he's up to something."

"Just make sure you remember tomorrow, too." Siobhan pushes with that prim statement, relenting almost immediately with a sheepish sort of smile. She's worried about this thing tomorrow. Not that it's obvious or anything. Ahem. "I always did." Learn by doing. "Said the same thing to a student the other day. Only not so nicely as all that. I think I only ended up confusing him more." She pauses, feeling as if she should probably qualify that statement. "He's French." Shrug. "Moody's meant to train adults, not kids. They need to learn to be aware, but scaring 'em is only going to be counter-productive." Another of her recently-aquired Big Words. "But if you can catch them off guard and embarass them, they'll learn to be more aware of their surroundings without being horribly scarred for life."

"Fair enough about Moody, no arguments there." Even if Sirius likes Moody's methods, as full of paranoia as they are. "Oh that's right, I almost forgot Dumbledore invited Beauxbatons.. as for the students not being horribly scarred, it's a bit early for that." No telling what's going to happen next. "I should get back home shortly, repair any damage that's been set to my cleaning efforts. Got to make the place look smart for the party." As smart as it can.

Siobhan snorts at that. She likes the old bear of an Auror, she really does. Just … disagrees with his teaching methods. "Yeah, when they didn't have a school to go back to after…" Yeah, she leaves that one alone, though there's a flash of guilt that twists her face before she manages to pull herself back under control. It helps that Sirius manages to confuse the living hell out of her. Startled, she turns to blink at him in confusion. "It's at the school, Sirius…" Her eyes narrow with a hint of suspicion for the first time. "So that the staff members who need to can also come. Didn't Dumbledore mention it?" She thought he would have, but with the old coot, one is never sure these days.

Sirius smacks the heel of his hand against his forehead, "Bloody buggering.. I forgot. I'm so used to playing host." Oh he's pleased at the excuse to not stay home, but it does make the place less gloomy when surrounded by friends. "Oh stop looking at me like that, I'm in my right frame of mind." So maybe part of him was looking forward to playing host, even as deplorable as his house is.

Soothed by the fact that only the real Sirius would have this kind of reaction to being looked at suspiciously, Siobhan hides a snicker behind one hand. "They do say the mind is the first thing to go with age, Siri." The first re-appearance of the Nickname she'd saddled him with since before the incident with Holly seems to co-incide with a minute relaxation of Sio's posture. Maybe things haven't changed as much as she'd thought. It's a dangerous hope to have, but she starts to carry it all the same. "Just means you're getting to be Old People." She laughs lightly at her own good-natured tease and finishes the last of her butterbeer with relish. A few coins are fished from her pocket and dropped down on the tabletop - enough to cover her own beverages and two more besides - without a second glance. "Well good, you can play host to me and Jack next weekend." She pushes her chair back and stands, adjusting her coat and scarf. "I've got some things to do in London and if I tell Mum we've got plans with you it saves Jack from a boring dinner and me from another boring 'date'." Plus it gives Sirius company. Win-win! She wrinkles her nose. Edana wasted no time in lining up plenty of those once she'd gotten news that her daughter was - once again - 'marketable'. "Mums. Can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em." She tosses a cheeky grin his way. "What d'you say?"

"Then I'm at an advantage, my mind went some time ago," Sirius states with a careless wave of his hand, "It happens to the best of us, and hopefully to the worst lot." Growing old can be the cruelest thing to happen to some types. "Gladly. I'm doing all I can to stop Kreacher's sabotage, but he only listens to me so far. Funny how he seems to interpret things." He rolls his eyes as he too rises and sets down coins for his drink, "I was glad to be rid of my own mum, but you don't seem to have the same problem I had with mine." The lucky girl. "Hmmm?"

"Aww, but I like your mum!" Siobhan can't hold back the wicked grin as she walks to the exit and - with a wave to Rosmerta - holds the door open for Sirius. "She's funny when she's not raving about the blood-traitors spoiling the carpets." Although being a rich pureblood from an old family who is able to Speak Slytherin probably helps some. "You just have to get the humor and not let her make you mad." There were whole days where portrait Sio had nothing better to do than to sit and pick at old 'Auntie Wally'. Whole days. She'll wait for him to pass through the doorway before following him out into the cold. "Is five o' clock a week from today all right?"

"You're mental, that's why." Sirius states with a noticeable bitter edge to his voice. He always hated his mother, the harpy. "Right. She's always good for a laugh." Pardon the animagus, he's unable to see any positive where Walburga is concerned. He nods to Rosmerta as he follows after Sio and exits the pub with her. "Not likely to ever happen, so don't hold your breath. Sure, five is good. A week from today. Perhaps I'll give up on Kreacher and find some other house elf who'd be willing to settle in and take over. Not that I can ever toss Kreacher out, pity. But that house is damn near impossible."

Siobhan accepts that bitter response with only an even brighter smile in return. "You're probably right. After all, how could any sister of Jack's be sane?" The bitterness doesn't bother her as much as it once might have - she's had some experience at dealing with nastiness not necessarily directed at her. The mention of Kreacher, however, gives her pause. "Janet's bored off her tea-cozy now that there's no more kids to clean up after at home. I can send her and a couple of the others out for a day if you want the help. It'd make the cleaning go quicker and I've not met an elf yet who can stand up to Janet when she gets pissy." It's a genuine offer; there really isn't that much for them to do around the Noble house. Part of the reason Janet's always so eager to answer when called.

Sirius laughs a little at that. Finally. "Oh, thank you for the offer, but I already feel bad about looking to take in another elf full time. It's not right to put an elf through Kreacher. It's why I haven't taken on another before now. Still.. could be quite amusing to see what sort of madness ensues. I'll let you know and if Janet is willing." See, he does have regards for elves. Just not Kreacher. "I'll see you at the school tomorrow," and ha, he remembered! He gives Sio a smile before disapparating with a pop.


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