1995-03-24: Apple And The Tree

Participants:

Ina_icon.gif Sirius_icon.gif

Scene Title Apple And The Tree
Synopsis Ina runs into the infamous former criminal.
Location London - Charing Cross Road & Leaky Cauldron
Date Mar 24, 1995
Watch For N/A
Logger Sirius

Ina had to leave behind her uniform robes as she traveled into muggle London, nothing said she had to give up her ranking pin on the button up shirt. Marking her a Hit Wizard and currently on duty. Still, she had some business in the shopping districts and looked down at a list in her hands. Her mother was almost impossible to buy a gift for, but her birthday was coming up soon and Ina wouldn't forget to get her a gift this year.

Most avoided her as she flitted through shops, something about the way she carries herself and the stoic expression she learned the carry when she wasn't really aware of it making her a little less than approachable. Still, when someone did get her attention the warm smile melted the colder demeanor. Coming out of one of the shops with a bag in hand and muttering something about the mail service being mostly a joke. Well, compared to the mail service of witches and wizards was far superior.

Sometimes it's nice to just walk around because you can and you don't have to hide anymore. Which isn't to say that Sirius isn't garnering a few odd looks from more observant muggles. He looks a far cry from his wanted posters, cleaned up, well groomed, his hair allowed to grow a bit long. His attire doesn't exactly blend him in with the crowds of muggle London, he's probably just a performer from West End in a Charles Dickens production, right? The old fashioned suit, the robes that could be mistaken for a coat. His home is a fairly good walk from Charing Cross, and it would be more expedient to Apparate, but again, there's something to be said for just getting out and walking. For many reasons beyond the obvious.

These are the things Hit Wizards are notorious for spotting! Those pale green eyes falling on the figure of…she'd spent enough time looking for the man that she recognized Sirius Black quite easily. She'd almost had him, so she thought, once before he was pardoned of his crimes. He looked a damn sight better than the posters, that was certainly no lie. Less desperate. Still, he was a Black; his family, even if he didn't claim them was well known across the Wizarding world and there were some very close ties to very dark wizards only a few branches away from his own family tree.

She looks away, not wishing to stare as she fiddles with the box in her hands. She fit in a little better than he didn, but not by a whole lot, really. Looking along the streets and watching muggles walk too and fro for a few moments before she turns and continues her path. Crossing the street at a jog to avoid traffic and sending her on a collision course with Padfoot.

Only a few branches? Try the same one, although Voldemort got to his brother before the Ministry could catch wind of his ties. What family members do don't necessarily equate to others. Take the Crouch's for example. Sad story, that is. Unaware of the hit wizard eying him, Sirius continues walking along the sidewalk of Charing Cross, possibly heading for the Leaky Cauldron, or not. The weather is alright, but he's not taking it for granted. If Ina's eyes are staring, he's more or less oblivious. Being stared at is something he's growing accustomed to. His pace quickens as he catches sight of Ina's jog in his direction from the corner of his grey eyes. Perhaps it's enough to throw the woman off and not run him over.

She steps aside with a bow of her head. "Mr. Black." The Scottish brogue was light, though she'd never be truly free of it (no matter how hard she tried). Said politely in greeting and so that he was sure she not only knew who he was, but wouldn't bull into him. The pin on her shirt made her stance on things clear as day. Indeed, if he knew much of Hit Wizards of the past, she had a striking resemblance to one of them who'd died to Dolohov's killing curse not intended for him. Dan MacThane.
She nods to him curtly and continues towards the Leaky Cauldron. Planning on using one of their owls to send the package as well as wrap it by magical means.

Sirius is used to people knowing his face and name. That doesn't mean that he doesn't get an unsettled feeling about strangers addressing him however. "Am I to take it that the Ministry is setting hit wizards to following my movements?," is asked softly so as to not draw too much muggle attention, and hopefully is heard before Ina's beyond earshot. It's a valid concern that he has. The pin isn't missed, and he can't exactly say that he recalls the images of all of those who fell in the line of duty. Unless they were part of the Order. Those faces and names, he recalls clearly. Recounting them in the endless days in Azkaban helped keep his mind active, and the Dementors at bay. Mostly.

She glances to him for a moment. Holding up the gift box for him to examine. "Aren't Hit Wizards allowed to shop for their parents?" A brow raised some in question. No, she and her family were never apart of the Order. Ina had only heard rumor of it entirely. "There's no decree to watch you that I am aware of. If there was then it's over my jurisdiction." When Ina smiles she can be warm and inviting, however she's not smiling at the moment. Sirius was a killer and, as far as she knew anything, a supporter of the Dark Lord. She wasn't smiling. Instead looking every ounce what a Hit Witch should.
Which is utterly ruined when a a cry of happiness is heard and Ina is fairly tackles. "Auntie Ina! You're in London!" Ina glances up with an unspoken apology to Sirius and lifts the girl up and walks a bit towards the man approaching with a huge smile on his face. A few passing moments before she turns away and heads back towards the Leaky Cauldron. A light blush on her cheeks as she mutters an apology.

Sirius gives a cursory glance to the box and he shrugs. "One can never be too careful, or sure as to what the Ministry is going to do." A passing muggle grumps his consent. Damn House of Commons and the Prime Minister! Ina's lack of smiles isn't bothering the man at all. He's actually surprised that there hasn't been a vigilante attempt on his life. Yet. It's still early however. Anything else he was going to remark on is lost and amusement shines briefly in his eyes as Ina is outed as a doting auntie. Some tough hit wizard this is, for the moment. With nothing better to do for now, as the small group heads for the Leaky Cauldron, he decides to follow a few paces behind.

She eyes Sirius for a moment, it wouldn't be hard to imagine the gaze withering, if her cheek didn't have a small hand on it. It's a look that threatens him bodily harm if he laughs. She sighs a bit and gives into the questions coming at her at the speed of light before one seems to bring a genuine smile to her face. "Aunnie Ina, where's Tess!?" She responds with a soft "Inside before I can call her." Turning into the Cauldron and setting the girl down. She nods to the man and promises to watch the girl while he's finishing his rounds.
She looks to Black, speaking while the girl is distracted, "The Ministry has more than enough on it's hands and mind, at the moment." It was easy to miss, but Ina was frustrated with the whole mess. She felt she should be out looking for Vold…You-Know-Who but the Minister was refusing the acknowledge his return. "You're pardoned and hardly our concern, at this point."

Oh he's laughing alright, on the inside. Something about the woman trying to look tough with a small child in her arms. Sirius does not laugh aloud, despite the urge to chuckle. When he's addressed again, he gives a curt nod, "Good, because I would be cross if the Ministry was wasting resources in troubling times." Although, there are those who would say tailing the ex-prisoner wouldn't be a waste, it'd be a public service. "So your reassurances.. Ina.. are welcomed."

She was perceptive enough to know that Black was amused by the sight. Once inside, Ina brings up a strange bit of reed from her pocket and blows across it. To most, it's silent. Sirius might hear the softly pleasing whine. Not a call for a dog but a… the kneazel came slinking down the stairs only to stiffen as the girl goes racing for it. The unamused look on the cat's face leaves Ina with a smirk. "Don't gripe at me, you were the one who knocked over the glassware and promised to pay me back." Leaving the intelligent feline to endure the crushing hug of the girl and the endless chatter of the child. Ina glances to Black and chuckles finally. "Troubling times is an understatement." She isn't allowed to say more. Rubbing at her jaw before going to find a seat. Shaking her head.

Sirius hears nothing of the whistle. His animagus transformation doesn't offer him keener senses unless he's in his animal form. Regardless of the lack of invitation, he follows the witch but remains standing. "Not as troubling as they could be, but problematic all the same. Random attacks, a student dead at Hogwarts, even copycat attacks are happening." The Ministry's lack of mobilization doesn't surprise him. They can stay in denial up until Voldemort appears in front of them shouting 'boo'.

She agreed whole heartedly. "It wouldn't be so bad if we weren't bound to not act without order." She was toeing a line and paused. "I shouldn't speak of such things." A tight sigh left her lips as she orders two drinks and wonders why he's still standing. "Still, it's all we can do, right? Mad-Eye Moody invited me to go to Hogwarts to let the students see he and I dueling. Maybe spark some interest. I'm going to end up on my arse but maybe I can show them how to do a proper counter." Here's hoping the Ministry doesn't find out before the class and put her on some stupid mission.

"That's a bit of a problem," Sirius states observantly. It's one of the many reasons why he never went the route of a Ministry career. "I'd take him up on that offer. A lot of the students think being an auror or a hit wizard is the cool thing to do. It's a career full of glamor. You'd think they would take one look at Mad-eye and reconsider. Not that it's not a worthy career, as it is. Students considering that path should just know what they're in for. So having a fully trained hit wizard assisting with Mad-eye for a class would be handy."

She does grin, "One would hope a glance at Moody would change their minds. I'm not sure they know how that happened to him. He doesn't talk about it much." She does know, her father had told her. "Still, I agree with you ther-" She blinks and looks at him for a moment. Her eyes narrowing suspiciously, "Mm…great, I'm agreeing with a once-criminal and about to act not quite in the interest of the Ministry but hoping to keep one of those bairns alive a little longer. Some Hit Witch, aye?" She shakes her head and nods as her mead is brought out and another glass set in front of Black. Muttering something about likely going to lose her promotion.

Sirius laughs in a barking manner at Ina then shrugs, "Falsely accused I might point out, not that I expect the world at large to believe a word of my side." He's just thankful for those that do believe him. "Our goals are the same, just different means. I find the Ministry too restrictive. I'm much too indepedent to be tied to so many rules."

She watches him, "You never supported…him, then?" Oh, but if she could do one thing it was suss out a lie. "I..have to say I wasn't sure. I was one of the ones ordered to find you…." She glances back to the cat being danced on her back paws and nearly chokes on the mead. "Ahem, apologies. Still, you're a hard man to find when you don't want to be." Wait, that was almost a compliment. "It's not always easy serving the Ministry…still. It's what Da did and it's what I do. It's too much of a risk to leave and hear about my squad getting hurt or an innocent falling prey. Especially when I knew I could have tipped the scales."

Sirius gives a great roll of his eyes, "No. I did not." He actually sounds offended, although he shouldn't. It's been common knowledge that he was a number one supporter, despite the truth that he was not. "I know how to hide, and to hide well. It's saved my life on several occasions, so I make no apologies for being difficult to find." He's very well aware of the trouble he caused the Ministry. Quite glad of it too. "That's an understandable feeling. It shows a sense of duty and honor."

She nods at that, "I didn't mean to offend or imply. I just wanted…to hear it for myself." Trying to explain softly as she relaxes a bit. "Nor would I apologize. Were I in your shoes I would have done the same. Believe me when I say I'm glad that the assumption of your loyalty was corrected, then." She nods her head. "The ability to counter and defend yourself is probably the best I can do for them. I may be with the Ministry, but I'm not so…naive." Said very, very softly. "Truth be told, it's infuriating at times. My Da said the same often. They can turn a blind eye, but I can't. Not after…not after Da died." She says with a shrug. The large man from earlier steps through the doors and the girl walks over to Ina and kisses her cheek. Ina says something softly and sends her off. The kneazel offering a glare before retreating and Ina only chuckles, "Poor Tess."

"Understandable. A lot of people seem to want to hear that." Sirius supposes the skepticism is healthy. People were fed a good line from the Ministry for so long anyway. "It's a good attitude to have. It can of course lead to being disillusioned, but better than blindly following." He can't really say anything comforting about her dad's sacrifice. She did say the man died fighting a very powerful Death Eater. Which does say something for his skill. "Then help them. You haven't got anything to lose by passing on some of your knowledge and experience."

She grins a bit at his last statement, "You obviously have never worked for the Ministry. The only reason I'll probably avoid getting sacked is because I was asked for by Mad-Eye Moody. They aren't the smartest tacks in the bin, but they know that Moody is still the best." She chuckles then into her pint as she drains it. "He's going to trounce me in this duel, I just know it. Only hoping I can counter enough to make him stumble." Those green eyes growing surprisingly warm as she finally relaxes around the falsely accused man. One Hit WItch, at least, no longer skeptical about his loyalties.

"No, nor do I ever wish to." Not unless it's to reform, and even then Sirius would need some, ah, serious persuading. "Moody is the best, even if they've tried to savage his reputation. His paranoia is not without good reason. Good luck to you, if you do take up his offer." Having yet to take a seat, he shifts just slightly in his stance, before saying, "I won't take up too much more of your time then. If you could pass on my regards to your colleague, Christian Faulkner?"

She chuckles, "The Ministry could try to ruin the man's reputation. Try. Moody has saved more people's lives than any other Auror to date. That's not something people forget…though sometimes the Ministry does." She nods and notes his shift of weight. "I didn't mean to keep you, I do appreciate the conversation. For what it's worth?" She rises to her feet and holds out a hand with a smile. "I was wrong about you, Sirius Black. You're proof that an apple can fall far from the tree…and down the hill…along the road…" She grins a bit. "If you need anything from a Hit Witch, feel free to send me an owl." She pauses when he mentions Christian and nods her head. "I will be sure to."

"Ah, but how do you know that I'm not putting up a very convincable act?" Sirius says cheekily as the woman rises, even as he reaches to shake her hand. "There are a few of us within the family tree who dared to stand out and away from the others… and have been disowned for the trouble. We're quite proud of it too." With that and another smile, he turns and walks out of the pub.

Ina chuckles, "If you're able to pull one over me, then you deserve to get away with it, then." She responds without a moment's hesitation. She does nod at that, "Good, though I don't think I'd change the last name. It suits you, regardless of who else it may attach to." She holds a pair of fingers to the edge of a non-existent hat in a silent goodbye before she sits back down. The kneazel hopping up into her lap and taking pleasure in setting claws to her leg as it stretches. "Now Tess…it wasn't so bad. Least she didn't have those pretty outfits for you to wear this time." A drink of her mead taken as the cat ignores her dutifully.


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