1994-10-24: Boggarts, Basilisks and Banshees, Oh My!

Participants:

Ginny_icon.gif Melissa_icon.gif Rene_icon.gif Sorrel_icon.gif

On Loan: Moody_icon.gif

Scene Title Boggarts, Basilisks and Banshees, Oh My!
Synopsis Moody starts teaching the wee ones about creatures, but then throws a curve ball.
Location Hogwarts - DADA Class
Date Oct 24, 1994
Watch For Riverdance!
Logger Ol' Mad-Eye

As the students arrive to the classroom, all looks normal. Desks aligned as usual, blackboard in place, if devoid of writing, and Moody standing at the front. Leaning heavily on his walking stick, he's waiting for the class to file in and get seated. His expression is as usual, unreadable, and it's hard to discern what may happen in this class.

Sorrel slips in with some of the others, going for a desk just one row back from the very front: eager, but wanting to stay out of immediate harm's reach, just in case. She sets her bag on the surface of the desk and drops into it, looking around, eyeing the blackboard, before realizing there are no clues here to be had. So instead she passes the short bit of time by watching the other students.

Ginny arrives a few steps behind Sorrel, her hair slightly mussed from her jog to the classroom. Her hand is slightly wet, her uniform a little touseled. She's straightening it as she enters the classroom, making her way towards the center of the desks and taking a seat there.

Rene shuffles into the room just behind a couple of other students, his visual attention on picking off some downy feathers from the shoulder of his robes. As he sits down in one of the frontmost rows, he looks for clues just like Sorrel, only to be rewarded with little else besides a rather stoic Professor Moody.

Melissa follows closely behind the others, finding a seat by Sorrel and waiting quietly, wondering what sort of problems they'd be put through this time.

One beady eye on the class filing in, the blue eye whizzing about.. that is until it gets stuck. Grumbling Moody stumps around behind his desk and finds a glass. With a flick of his wand and silent casting of aguamenti, the glass fills. There's a squelching sound as the man /removes/ the blue eye and drops it into the glass, letting it bob and spin. Not caring if this bothers anyone, he starts talking, "We're gonna cover a few different topics today, so keep up, quills out and be ready to take notes."

"Blech," Sorrel mutters under her breath, a little taken aback by that delightful display. And yet, curiosity ever the bane of her, she can't help but watch this all with a disturbed fascination, like watching a car wreck. So there's a bit of a delay before she realizes she's been given an instruction, at which point she starts scrambling with her bag to get her things out.

Ginny tries not to make a face at Moody's cleaning of the eye, though morbid curiosity rears and she eyes the bobbing glass eye out of the corner of her own eye. When Moody gives the order, she bends down, extracting parchment, quill, and her ink pot out of her bag, placing all three on the desk.

Rene's reaction is pretty much just like Sorrel's, except for the fact that at his core, he is a little boy - and little boys think gross things are the coolest. He gets out his note-taking supplies, and only after a moment of sheer will is he able to concentrate on Moody instead of Moody's Eye. Yes, it is an entity now.

Melissa shudders as the eye comes out- but thankfully she has directions to distract her, and quickly turns to get her supplies for class, definitely trying not to look at the eye.

Moody reaches into the glass and withdraws the eye. Shaking off the clinging water droplets, he unceremoniously pops it back into place. The eye does a full 360 and that seems to please the professor. That out of the way! "Some of you had Professor Lupin last year and he did a good job going over dark creatures. So I'll give a rundown for you familiar with some of them, and you firsties, it'll be the basics which'll do for now." He taps his wand at the blackboard and across the top, the chalk writes itself, 'Dark Creatures'.

Once the show is over and the eye back where it belongs, Sorrel finds it a great deal easier to focus on what she's meant to be doing. Her quill rather fancy and new-looking, she manages to get it and her parchment out of her bag, before slinging the satchel over the back of her chair. She quickly jots down the date, her name, and then the words from the board at the top of her page, before looking back up expectantly, quill poised to write.

Ginny scrawls the date in the upper right corner of the parchment, and then in bigger letters on the left: Dark Creatures. Her own quill is slightly shabby, but clearly sturdy, and her ink well is her favourite deep blue. Her gaze lifts from the parchment to focus on Moody.

Picking up his quill in his left hand, Rene listens and jots down the beginning lines, pausing when he finishes the letters. He cannot help but wonder if this is a class that they are making him teach- because of all the werewolf activity lately, and all the hubbub at the ministry about them. It sure does look like suspicious timing, if you ask him.

"Dark… Creatures," Melissa says, writing this down. After that bit of ick, at least the class should be exciting. She thought maybe Hagrid should have come along to help… She frowns a bit at the mention of Lupin… she had seen him in the werewolf registry and it made her seriously opposed to the whole idea in the first place… Clearly, if a nice man like Lupin could be a werewolf, it wasn't fair to treat them all like vicious killers…

Stumping around back to the front of his desk, Moody addresses the students, "Who can name off some dark creatures for me?" He watches the class, somewhat expectantly, as if testing to see what they know so far. As for the Ministry? They can.. well.. insert rude phrase here. Moody's always gone his own path.

At the question, Sorrel sticks her hand up, keeping the quill in it to give her that much more height, as if she might somehow otherwise be overlooked. Still fresh with ink, it drops a drip onto her parchment, which she then gets on her other forearm, but she doesn't really seem to mind - or notice.

Ginny's hand goes up at the question, and in her head she recites a few of the dark creatures she knows of in her head. Boggarts. Hinky punks. And, one she knows quite intimately.. the basilisk. After raising her hand, she looks around to see who else has, curious.

Melissa raises her hand… her dad's job deals with these things. There's a lot of them…

Just like most days, Rene is one of the students to lift his hand up into the air, though not as excitedly or as aimlessly as the rest. He knows the basics, and the scariest ones that really aren't common, but kids know them because they're Totally Badass, right?

Moody points to Sorrel first, "Miss Hazard?" After Sorrel answers, he'll call on Miss Weasley next, and so on in order of the students raising their hands. He'll ask for elaboration further once the students speak up with their offerings.

Sorrel drops her hand back down as she's called on, frowning as she notices now that blob of ink on her arm. Oh well, no matter. "Well, there's … Banshees, right?" she replies, trying not to sound too uncertain. "They count as Dark Creatures, I think." She gives a hopeful little shrug with that.

Ginny lowers her hand as Moody calls on her. When Sorrel only mentions one, she decides to do the same - besides, under Moody's firm gaze, it's getting hard to remember about some of the creatures she knows about only in theory. But there is a creature that is so much more than theory to Ginny. "Basilisks, sir."

Next it's Melissa's turn. "I was going to say banshees…" she admits quietly. "But… how about boggarts? I think those are."

Banshees, Basilisks, Boggarts. Too many Bs. When Rene's turn comes around, he offers something new. Something from home. "Tarasque, professor." Which are not actually dragons, but rather dangerous beasts in their own right. "If we are speaking more commonly- Dementors."

Moody nods his head in the affirmative, "Yes, they do count, good answer Miss Hazard. 4 points to Ravenclaw." He taps the blackboard, and 'banshee' writes itself with the chalk. "4 points to Gryffindor for Miss Weasley's excellent answer." He's not awarding more to be fair. "An incident close to you, from what I've been told," he says, giving Ginny another look with that crazy eye. Following banshee, 'basilisk' appears on the board. "Another 4 points to Ravenclaw. Boggarts were heavily studied in Professor Lupin's class last year, Miss Burch. And aha, good answer there Frenchie." Looks like he's back to calling Rene 'frenchie'. "4 points to Slytherin, and nasty blighters they are." Dementor now joins the words up on the board.

Sorrel sits up straighter with a pleased grin as her answer is not only right, but earns her house some much needed points. Her pride is cut a little short as she catches Moody's comment about Ginny and the basilisk, and, with no pretence of trying to be subtle, glances curiously over at the third year. It's a short, thoughtful look, before she turns back to her parchment and begins taking these down from the board.

Ginny smiles proudly when her house is given the points, though it's dampened slightly by the memories that threaten to creep into her mind's eye. She pushes them back, however, focusing on the task at hand. Painstakingly, she writes each creature name on her parchment, leaving space between for the information about them. And if her quill presses a little harder than necessary on the parchment, well, it's not that easy to notice.

Melissa smiles, taking down those names. Wait, was a tarasque the same thing as a dementor, or two different things? She put a question mark on the side next to the two names, and hoped to be able to ask Rene about it later. And oh, Ravenclaw got some good points here, hooray!

There are probably a few people that also look over at Ginny, one being Rene - but far more subtly than the ones that swivel their necks. As for Frenchie, the boy takes it in stride again. He cannot be too picky, when it comes to being addressed. Could be worse. He writes down the creatures on his parchment, quietly wondering to himself the extent of that story. Perhaps he will ask some older students. Notably Not Ginny.

"Now, starting with Miss Hazard's beast of choice, the Banshee. They have the appearance of a woman, and their screams are known to be lethal. They're known to have floor-length black hair and a green-tinged face that's skeletal." Moody gives out the basic descriptor of the banshee, as well as a few suggestions for defeating them. Then, without warning, the professor switches the rails. "Frenchie, step up here for me."

Sorrel is busy scribbling this all down, since Ginny's failed to do anything horribly interesting to distract her from her note-taking. But she leaves off mid-word as Moody suddenly changes things up. Her quill still positioned to finish it, her head and gaze snaps up to see what's going to happen now.

Ginny takes notes rapidly, her quill moving swiftly over the parchment as she gets everything down in the space she's allotted for the banshee information. She almost runs out of room, and has to write extra-small to get everything in. When Moody calls Rene up to the front of the class, she tilts her head, clearly curious.

Melissa writes down all the details, then looks up at Rene as he's called up. What, was Professor Moody going to turn him into a banshee to show us what they were like? Somehow Melissa wouldn't put it past him.

Writing, writing, what? Rene looks up from his parchment of tiny, flowing script towards Moody, blue eyes immediately suspicious. After a second of this, he slips from his seated position and steps up to the plate, as it were - his posture straight and his jaw still, eyes questioning the grizzled professor.

"Wand out boy, remember what we went over next lesson?" That's about all the warning Moody gives before he's got his own wand out. Oh dear. Now that he's got the class on one track about creatures, time to trace steps back to a previous lesson. Just to see how fast these kids can think and react. Fortunately for Rene, the spell Moody decides to fire isn't anything particularly menacing.. and if he's quick about it.. might even be able to block it. "Tarantallegra!"

Sorrel watches this all very curiously, and she leaves off her class notes in mid-word so that she can jot down a few thoughts about this in the margin of her page. 'Wand out' is written and underlined along one side, while tiny, cramped writing quickly notes how Rene was called up to the front. She does it quickly and looks immediately back up as Moody fires the hex at the Slytherin boy.

Ginny looks quite surprised at this turn of events, and like Sorrel, she rapidly transcribes everything that has just happened. Her writing fills the empty parts of the paper, until one more word will warrant a new sheet. Between writing, she'll lift her head up and look curiously at Moody and Rene, until the hex is fired, and the writing is entirely forgotten.

Melissa backs her head off as Moody suddenly attacks, but not quite with what she was expecting. Getting a blank look on her face and adjusting her glasses as she thinks over what Moody just said, she puts a note in the corner of her parchment: "Tip: READ AHEAD."

The moment that Moody utters the word 'wand', Rene is going for his own. Stupid mistake. Rookie mistake! But he has no time to mull over his dullness. Frenchie is quick, possibly only because he seemed to have a hair-trigger word for Moody- that word being 'wand'. "PROTEGO!"

When Rene successfully blocks the crazy jig o'Riverdancing, Moody's face cracks with a grin. Or what could be a grin. Difficult to tell. "Good laddie.. good. 5 points to Slytherin. You practiced the shield spell and were more or less ready. The lesson here, CONSTANT VIGILANCE. Be ready for anything. The Frog here had some warning, not much, but I gave him some. Next time, you may not be so lucky. Go on then, back to your seat with ye."

Hearing the caps-lock in his tone, Sorrel jots down in big block letters along the margin: CONSTANT VIGILANCE. So long as it's written down, surely that will help, right? She seems happier with it there, anyway. Not quite sure what lengths the professor might go to about this, she stops her note-talking long enough to draw her own wand, holding it in her off hand as she takes her quill back up again.

Ginny notices Sorrel draw her wand, and decides to follow suit. Her own willow wand finds its way out of her robe pocket and into her free hand, while she continues to finish up the note taking.

Melissa holds her wand but keeps it in her pocket. Constant vigilance was one thing, but… aren't teachers supposed to be the ones protecting the students? She shrugs… she supposes this is his style.

You're supposed to trust your teachers! Moody has turned that all upside down on a regular basis, hasn't he? Learning by example, Rene supposes. He lets out a puff of air through his nose in response to his being dismissed just as quickly, striding back to his seat with his wand still in his hand. Before he sits, Rene does catch the eyes of a few other students, but only aims to quickly catch the gaze of any of his 'friends', scattered through the years and houses. How about them apples?!

A dry cackle issues forth, as Moody sees the other students start going for their wands. "Put them away, it's no fun if you know it's coming. Back to the original topic. I gave a brief outline of banshees. Not much to them, oh no. Boggarts are a whole 'nother bread of nasty. Anyone want to share with the class what it is Boggarts do?"

Sorrel puts her wand back reluctantly, though she keeps it a little nearer to hand than it was before, just in case. Her brow furrows as he asks about Boggarts, but she comes up a little too dry to feel she can answer it well. What she knows, she knows well, but then there are gaps on those things she hasn't looked up about yet. Her gaze flickers over to Melissa, since it was her suggestion.

Ginny's hand goes right up in the air with a speed Hermione would be proud of. In fact, it's Hermione who'd told her about Lupin's hands-on lesson about boggarts, and it's from this that Ginny has her knowledge of them. She hopes to be called on, but her gaze also goes to Melissa. Did the quiet first year know about boggarts, too?

Melissa raises her hand along with Ginny, though she didn't feel like she needed to answer, having given the name already. But, she knew some things about boggarts… her father had spent quite some time poring over Muggle criminal lists to explain a rash of terrified screams at a college party. It was just bad luck that it happened there…

Still bristling like some sort of tiny, offended peacock, Rene knows the answer, but does not raise his hand; instead, he picks up his quill in tensed fingers to jot something down while the others waggle about to answer Professor Moody.

Moody eyes the hands going up, and debates for a moment on who to call upon. Choice decided on, "Miss Burch? What can you tell us about boggarts?" The board erases itself, except for 'Boggart', the chalk ready to take down the pertinent points once Melissa speaks.

Melissa stands up, adjusting her glasses. "Let's see… it's a shapeshifter that takes the form of the worst fear of the person who sees it… They live in dark places, like closets and under beds… you know, all the places you think there are monsters when you're little. And I know its weakness is laughter… there's a spell to help with that." She nods affirmatively, going over it in her mind… anything else? "Oh yes, and it helps to have more than one person around when you're trying to stop one, because then it has to choose someone."

Sorrel adds this new heading to her notes and then turns her attention back to Melissa, giving what might pass as a supportive smile to her housemate. And then as Melissa speaks, she starts jotting down these details. Somehow her notes seem already longer than what's been covered in class, since she's also noted various observations as she's gone, whether they have anything to do with the class or not.

Ginny smiles at Melissa as she gives the information, rather impressed at the first year. She takes fewer notes than usual, as most of the information she already knows, instead opting to go with keywords. 'Dark places', 'Worst fear', 'More than one person', and so on.

Rene finally seems to relax again as he involves himself in writing down the descriptions of the Boggart, briefly and unsuccessfully pondering over what his might be should he ever bump into one.

Moody nods his head, and could be looking impressed, hard to tell with a face like his. "Excellent answer Miss Burch, five points to Ravenclaw. Now, class is about up, so let's hand out assignments.. First years, a roll of parchment on Banshees, where they are found, what they can do, and the best way to defend. Second years, two rolls of parchment on boggarts, and the way to repel them. Third years, two rolls of parchment on the basilisk, how they are created, why they are dangerous, and the effects of basilisk venom."

Melissa grins. With all the boneheaded decisions the Ministry's been making recently, this is one time she's grateful her dad works for the government. She sits down, feeling proud, and takes down the assignment.

Sorrel doesn't seem too put off by the homework assignment. She's already done some reading on banshees, so it shouldn't be too bad, she's hoping. She quickly jots down this homework assignment, as well as keeping notes of those given to the older students as well, just in case it ever comes up.

Ginny nods, fixing the assignment in her mind after jotting it down on the last free bit of parchment she has, in words as big as will fit. This assignment should be easier for her than nearly anyone else, considering the circumstances.

Mmm, homework. Rene scribbles in his assignment towards the end, mentally noting that Moody did not give any assignment out on Dementors. Is that a hint of some kind? Is he being tricky again? The blond boy glances up at the professor before bringing his notes to a close.

Perhaps Moody is being tricky, perhaps he's saving things for later? WHO KNOWS. "Everyone got that down? Alright then, class dismissed." There's a method to his madness, he's keeping you lot on your toes.


Any additional notes fall to the bottom.


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