1996-02-24B: Business Then Pleasure


Maura_icon.gif Jack_icon.gif

Scene Title Business Then Pleasure
Synopsis Maura comes to ask Jack about a memory charm. He turns the charm on, and things happen.
Location Hogsmeade: Torchwood Offices
Date Feb 24, 1996
Watch For Brogue and blunt language.
Logger Jack

It actually took a great deal of courage for Maura to finally address the 'small' matter of her memory issues. But as it's been coming up more, she dressed up all professional-like, and marched (well, not really marched) down to the Torchwood Offices to go see the curse-breaker himself. Someone doesn't trust the floo quite yet. Out of habit, when she arrives, her eyes scan the room for windows. Any windows. And doors. All of them. As if assuring herself of escape routes no matter how safe a place may be. And only then does she step fully inside.

Torchwood does have a couple windows. They're not huge. But they are big enough to give the office a nice, bright, airy feel. Jack Noble sits at his desk, legs crossed up on it, reading a stack of parchment. He hears the door open, and shifts quickly, trying not to have his feet up on the desk when a client arrives. However, he moves just a little wrong, and falls completely out of his chair. Somewhere, one of his teachers is yelling, "Four on the floor, Mister Noble." He lifts his head enough to peer over the desk. "Hello?" He sees Maura, and his grin widens. "Well, hello, gorgeous. Welcome to my little corner of Heaven." He's turning on the charm quite a bit. (Hopefully, it makes up for his lack of dexterity earlier.)

Maura ducks her head, trying not to laugh at Jack's tumble off the chair. "Poor baby. I bet that hurt." For the statement of sympathy though, the accompanying expression is pure amulet-induced mischeif. "Hello yourself, handsome." She's still looking around as she says it of course, and breathing in the scent of sweeeeeeeeet caffeine from the muggle coffee-maker. "Oooooh, I think I remember seeing those when I was visiting the hospital in America. I think that's where I was visiting, anyway." A frown punctuates the remark, but she squares her shoulders and steps inside the smaller room that comprises his office. "Your little corner of Heaven, is it? Comfortable, at least. I like the red and gold accents."

Jack laughs, and catches her attention's focus. "Would you like a cup of coffe, Maura?" He grins. "Oh, it didn't hurt too badly." He shrugs, secretly proud of his little office, but not really wanting to show it. He sets about fixing two cups, then turns. "Would you like cream or sugar?"

"Sounds like a lovely idea." Maura agrees. "I could use the extra energy about now." Paying attention to every detail, she settles herself into a chair, still being almost as careful as she might without the Eye around her neck. Habits like that are hard to break. "Both, please." she decides, watching the ritual of making coffee with idle fascination. "How long have you been a curse-breaker, if you don't mind me asking."

Jack pours just a little cream and a scoop of sugar into the cup, then stirs it before handing it off to her. His own, he drinks with merely two scoops of sugar. Sipping at the hot drink slowly, he thinks. "I got into it shortly after Hogwarts. It's been a little more than ten years. I've picked up a thing or two." He grins. "I'm sensing this is a professional visit instead of a personal one. What can I do for you?"

Maura tilts her head a bit, in curiousity. "I try to make my personal visits after hours. But we can always segue from business to personal once we're done here, if you like?" Not that she hadn't thought about such a visit. But this has been eating at her. "More then 10 years. Alright, good. I don't know how unusual this one may be." she admits, twisting her hands a bit. "I don't have any memory of the people I knew before I was taken. I know I went to Hogwarts. I know my magic still. I know… things I was taught as a child. But I remember no names, and no faces. I don't even remember what curse he -used- on me." Which annoys the hell of out her; a flash of anger appearing and then sliding back so she can appear composed again.

Jack thinks, stroking his chin with his thumb and finger. While he does, he addresses the segue. "I'm all for a good slide from professional to personal." He grins and then focuses his mind. "I can't think of a specific curse that would do that. I have heard of it happening, but it was a chain of curses. The man who had you and Rosie was the kind of guy I can see using a curse-chain, if what I understand of him is right." He frowns, turning and aiming his wand at the bookshelf. A book flies into his hand, and he cracks it open to a well-worn page. "Memory curses fall under three types: alteration, blockage and pure erasure. Alteration means that the information is there, just changed in some way. Like you remember a name, but you remember it wrong. Often, those cases, you can ease back into the memory with exposure. Slow exposure. Blockage is just what it implies. A wall is built between the information you know and your conscious mind. It often is traumatic but it is possible to breach the wall slowly, especially if you know a skilled legilimens. Erasure means that the magic has been completely removed from the memories in your head, or the connections to the other memories have been magically severed so that you cannot recover them without long periods of time, even then. I am not sure which your case involves, or whether it's a chain of more than one. I can rule out pure Alteration, though, because you don't remember the information wrongly."

There's a moment when it appears Maura may well begin to hyperventilate. Blocked, or Erased. Neither of them sounds very pleasant in ters of recovery. But after grabbing the amulet around her neck in reassurance, she gives a slow nod of acceptance. "If it were erasure, would I still remember the events associated with people, do you think? I know, for example, that it was my mother who taught me to use the spells that I cast without a wand. I just cannot see her face or form her name." is further explained, trying to help narrow it down further. "God, what a ratfucker. I'd cheerfully strangle the son of a bitch with my bare hands if I could. It wasn't enough to inject me with some magical piece of shit altering spell. Noooo, he had to go and screw around with my memories too! Hell, if he had his way it wouldn't matter if I could remember the damn names, I wouldn't be able to say them anyway!" And just as the tirade is getting really good, she rips the amulet off from arond her neck and drops it on Jack's desk with a snarl. Right up until it's out of her hands, at which point she has to brace herself with both hands on the desk and then ease back into sitting again. "Sorry. He is quite angry. And so much anger… bothers me.I will just speak slowly instead for a few minutes."

Jack watches the whole soliloquy impassively. He can't even imagine not being able to remember his family and friends. "I would cheerfully strangle the ratfucker, too." He looks down at the amulet. "So, there is a presence there?" He is fascinated, and begins casting at the amulet. He did hear her question, and is considering it. "That sounds more like a block than an erasure. Or, perhaps a block / alter combo. Block most memories, and alter what remains to be disconnected, loose. Like leaving just enough breadcrumbs on the trail for you to see, but you could also sit and watch the birds swoop down and …. Ohh, hey… that's interesting." He doesn't usually do this around an audience that isn't guard or other 'breakers. "This is old."

Maura can't help but smile at the easy agreement Jack gives to Shadow's demise. "I imagine you would. Your sister is doing much better now though." is noted quietly, in case he hadn't been able to make it up to the school again yet today. His response to her question is filed away, yes, for future reference or discussion. But, she is far too interested in his casting on the amulet to keep pursuing that issue. "There is a presence in there." she agrees, keeping herself in a posture perfect pose despite the avid way her eyes watch what happens with the amulet. She itches to lean forward and folds her hands in front of herself instead to keep from leaning. "Ancient old? Is that unusual?"

"Hmmm? Unusual?" Jack looks up at the interest on her face. "Not so much unusual as interesting. I can't place the specific time. But it's pretty ancient." He shrugs. "I don't see anything that would really harm you. It does look like it does have some sort of impetus to connect to the personality inside. You haven't noticed… any dark thoughts? Other than spewing shit like a camel into the soap, I mean." He smiles, then remembers what he said. "I mean…" Cue a flush across his face. Hopefully she thinks it's funny rather than slapping him across the face. Either option is … likely.

"Well, feel free to study it at your leisure. If you could perhaps persuede it to allow me to keep some of my more embarassing thoughts to myself, I would be rather grateful." Maura enunciates, surprise showing on her face there when Jack says… what he says. And it sits there for a moment before she bursts out laughing. And laughs some more. And really, finally, has to wipe a tear from the corner of her eye and catch her breath. "See, I told your sister I felt at ease around you. I will not care when you say those things if you do not care when I do." is promised with fake solemnity. "You have probably given it.." and she points to the offender. "Ideas, however."

"I don't want to keep it too far away from you," Jack begins, responding to her comments about studying it. "I worry about the effects on you." Now that it's connected to her, he doesn't want to do something that would mess up that status quo. When she begins laughing, Jack smiles a sheepish grin that just keeps widening the more she laughs. And when she speaks, he leans forward. "Are they like the ideas I'm getting? I surely hope not." The guy in the amulet can make all sorts of comments, but uh … Jack is intrigued by the wearer as well. "I don't mind a bit, honey." He chuckles. "It's nice to find someone who's a 'lady', but doesn't mind being blunt." This is where he'd ask about her house in school, or about her school years in general, but … damn. Memory issues. "Would you like something a little stronger?" He gestures to her coffee. I've got that somewhere, too, if you do." This might be that segue they were discussing. Might.

"It needs to remain within touching distance of me." Maura agrees. "But the offer still stands. You do not appear dismayed by my company, and so it will not be a hardship for either of us." is decided, her smile lifting a bit when Jack leans forward. "Just what ideas are you getting, Jack?" She might be lucky she's not got the amulet on again yet, or she'd be giving away all -kinds- of thoughts she's having. Probably why a blush spreads quickly across her face. "Being blunt appears to work quite nicely." is added, before nodding. "What do you have?" She will at least pick up the eye again, looking at it a moment before trying to decide whether she's ready to wear it again.

"I can handle … touching distance." Maura may make the openings, Jack just steps right into them. He's blunt. "I have some of Abe's old firewhiskey, I have some mead, and I have a good scotch. I like the mead. It reminds me of sitting around having the most random conversations with my siblings. Liam frowned on it, but the rest of us enjoyed it, usually." He stands, movements slow and deliberate, and he pauses. "What'll it be? I'll grab it and a couple glasses, and we'll have a drink. Hell, who knows? I might get a couple more ideas." He grins even more widely.

Maura considers a moment, trying to remember what she used to drink. One can almost hear the wheels turning as she tries prodding at what she does recall of her past. "Scotch." she declares. "With ice." is added after a second, as she returns the ancient necklace to its proper place around her neck. "You were a Hogwarts student as well, I know. I expect you got into all sorts of mischeif didn't you." She may not be able to speak much about her own past, but she can ask plenty of questions! "You can tell me all about that while we have a drink, and you get ideas." she teases. "You strike me more as the type who -definitely- gets ideas though, rather then -might-."

Jack laughs easily, ducking up the stairs. There will be the sound of glasses clinking, ice dropping in one, and the pouring of liquid. He brings the drinks back down, offers Maura hers, and chuckles again. "I definitely was the kind to get in trouble. I was four years younger than Liam, Potter, Black and that whole crew, so I thought they were the absolute best thing ever. I did my best to emulate the…" He spreads his hands expansively. "… great Mauraders." He snorts and takes a sip of his mead. "I didn't quite get into the same trouble they did, but I certainly tried. There was this one time…." He spends a few moments telling her about some of the more ridiculous pranks. As to ideas, his eyes definitely show some of them. His gaze lingers on her, gazing at her with a look of appreciation.

Maura doesn't seem to be a drunk at least. She sips slowly at the glass she's given, even taking the time to appreciate the taste or the fine Scotch. Of course, after drinking dirty water and eating slop for a year, just about anything is gourmet. "The great marauders. And that was before I would have been there." she tries to place the timeframe, satisfied with what she can piece together while she listens. And even laughs at appropriate moments. "To getting into trouble." she toasts, tipping back the rest of her glass at the end of the story, and …. well, certainly returning the appreciative gaze. "Jack. I am absolutely horrible at this. I mean, with this thing on I can obviously say just about anything. But I'm.. I mean… I've been locked away for a year. I don't even know what to do about what I want." Suddenly, she's wishing her glass were full again too, embarassment evident.

Jack likes the ladies, yes. He likes getting them close, and making them feel good. But he is a gentleman. Anything less, and his father would have given him one of those rare discussions that ended in cool disappointment, and Jack would have felt it for days. "I imagine so. You're a bit younger than me, I think." That doesn't make any difference to him, but he does mention it. When she speaks about her uncertainty, he holds up a hand. "I don't want to do anything more than you're comfortable with. If that means we just sit and kiss like horny teenagers, I'm good." It'll be rough on him, but he'll make it through. "If you want more, but just need … help with that memory, so to speak, I can do that, too." He doesn't want to take advantage of her, but neither will he turn down her advances. He'll offer as much as she wants or needs, but it's up to her.

"No, I didn't think you would. I wouldn't go anywhere near you if I thought that." Maura admits, a bit wry. "I like you, Jack. I feel good when I'm with you. I just want… more of that." she elaborates, initially. And, fortunately, can stand easily to walk over where he's sitting. "That you don't seem bothered by my issues is a curiousity. But at the moment I'm not about to look a gift horse in the mouth, so to speak. And if you can help me remember 'the rest', it means you can also help me forget the last year. And I would definitely like to forget about that for awhile." So she holds out her hand towards him in invitation.

Invitation accepted. Jack reaches out, grasping her hand gently. He leads her to the stairs. "I believe it's in decent condition up here," Jack says, somewhat pensively. He pulls her into his arms, giving her a soft kiss. "This alright?" Jack's voice starts to show a tiny bit of his native Scottish brogue. This is how he charms the ladies.

"Pretty sure it could look like a tornado hit the upstairs and I wouldn't be paying much attention." Maura, or amulet, points out without hesitation. She may wince at the mess when she has to find her clothing. But for now? Doesn't care! "Oh now that's nice." she agrees, returning the kiss with one of her own, and absolutely having one of those swooning type moments at the brogue. The -brogue-. He has one of those. The may not sleep at all, now. "I bet when you say naughty things with that accent, clothing magically disappears. Let' try it." Her innocent smile fails. Utterly.

Jack just laughs, a deep, throaty laugh that seems to vibrate through his body. "C'mon then, luv," he says, drawing her actually up the stairs. The room, for once, is not that cluttered. Janet must have been through recently. "Bed's over here." He chortles at the thought of his brogue melting clothing. "Oh, yeah. It just melts right off. Like snow on a spring morn, eh?" The brogue gets a little thicker. "You like some help wi' tha'?" He gestures to her clothing. "I don't mind a bit 'a help m'sel."

Janet's a good house elf! But, a rather entranced Maura is just playing follow the leader at the moment. And hell, when he just keeps up with the talking and the accent gets thicker she's /so/ gone. "Uhm…" See? Cannot even properly form words at the moment. "You just keep talking like that and you can take anything off me that you want." she promises, wasting about zero time in starting to help him out of his own. It also doesn't seem as if she's forgotten all that much about how to go about doing this, brushing her lips acorss his neck once she's close enough.

As she helps him, Jack skims his hands over her body, undoing buttons and drawing her much closer. There isn't a whole lot of sleep that night, but there is some. Snatches of sleep are punctuated with Jack reminding her exactly how good touch can feel, and just how good it feels to him. Sated, they lay tangled together as the night wanes and morning dawns. Sunbeams start to emenate through the room, and Jack stirs. He pulls Maura to him, half-asleep, and he presses a kiss to her shoulder. "Mmm, luv. Mornin'." Now, there's thick brogue, and the gravel of sleep in his voice.

Even if she walks around sleepy all day, there won't be a single word of complaint from Maura's lips. And demonstrably, there's a content smile on her face when lips press against her shoulder, and she turns herself around so they're tangled facing each other. "God, say that again just the same way and we'll be right back where we started last night." She may only be half kidding there, her arms wrapping up around his shoulders while she nuzzles up closer. "I'm afraid to ask what time it is. You have to go to work, don't you." Even if it's just downstairs. OH GOD, the door's not -open- is it?? No, no, she's not going to look.

"Mmm." Jack grins. "Nice thing abou' bein' self-employed, lass. I got hours, but most know if I'm not there, leave a note. I'm pretty good about gettin' back to 'em." He purposefully interjects the brogue, loving the way it makes her react. "Nobody comes up here. I have a notice-me-not charm on the stairs. Keyed to family, and …" There's a reason he walked you up the stairs by the hand, Maura. "So, if ye like, we can stay here until I hear the alarm for the door. Up to you. I can get a breakfast for us here, if you want us to."

"I think I'm going to enjoy the fact that you're self employed. If you'd like more of my company; and not just today, either." Caught between rolling her eyes at the deliberate infusion of accent, and melting, apparently Maura chooses both. "Oh, I'd definitely like. I'm not usually one for breakfast, but coffee and whatever else you've got around will do just fine if you've a mind for it. I'm not really expected anywhere." Smirk. "The joy of being unemployed. Though it will hopefully be remedied soon." There's a pause then, before she asks. "What else do you like to do for fun? I mean, if you'd like to spend time together sometime later in the week."

"Thought you might," Jack grins. He summons Janet and orders a breakfast. Nothing heavy, coffee, tea, light pastries and fruit. He specifies an amount that may seem smaller than enough for two; Janet is usually efficient and does things her own way. Jack's learned his way around that. After much ranting about 'Yous got to eat, Master Icarus,' and 'You is not to be telling Janet how much to feed you,' Janet leaves, returning with the food. "Thank you Janet," he says, blushing a bit about his house-elf treating him like a four year old. He tilts his head at the 'hopefully that will be remedied soon'. "What job are you trying to get?" Maybe he or someone in their circle can put in a good word. "I was raised by a Scottish Lord. I ride, I go to the cinema, I go out dancing from time to time. We have a fairly close connection to the Muggle world, so I do a lot of different things." He grins. "My work is so interesting and odd I get to travel quite a bit, but when I'm home, I like to do bog standard British things."

Maura is probably a little odd in that she finds Janet absolutely wonderful. Even smiling at the efficient, but pushy, house elf. "She has such affection for all of you. I love seeing that. So when she tells you to eat, you should eat." is pointed out, with a teasing smile. "Being a mediwitch at Hogwarts. I was touring the different magic hospitals in other countries, interning for a year at each before.." she waves her hand, so as not to have to say it. "And now that I've wound up there, and it feels safe for me, maybe I should stay. I'd be useful, I think." It's when he mentions dancing that she perks up further. "There's a place around here to go dancing?" That part about being raised by a Scottish Lord doesn't seem to register much. "Lucky, getting to travel a lot. But still, home is home. So I can't blame you for wanting to just chill when you're back."

She gets it. Sometimes, Jack's mum doesn't understand why he's always out dancing, or riding or whatever else when he's home. "Traveling's fun. I liked it a lot more when I first started. See new places, do new things. Now…. I do it, but it's not as fulfilling. It's something I do because I have to." He nods to the interest in dancing. "It's Muggle, as I say, but there are several places to go. I usually hit a couple places in London. There's a lovely little club run by a Muggleborn. She loves it when wizards and witches come in, but she likes to keep the place mixed, so we have to act Muggle for a night. That's not difficult for a night or two here and there." He grins. "I'll take ye if ye like." When she mentions working at Hogwarts, he brightens up. "Oh, so you'd be close!" He really likes that idea. "And I think you'd make a brilliant mediwitch. It would be nice to have a second one, I know." With as much trouble as those children get into, it's a grand idea to have two.

Maura did a lot of travelling for awhile, so it's probably more instinctive then anything else. "If you take something familiar with you, it might seem a little less bothersome when you have to go somewhere." No, she's not talking about something like a blankie either. "This club you mention sounds nice. But is it the sort of place a personality like whatever haunts my talisman can go? You may not mind it, but…" her voice trails off a bit, though she's still smiling. "I'd not want to be an embarassment anywhere. Acting muggle for a night isn't a problem." she reasons, finally peering over the side of the bed to try and grab her shirt to put on. Hot drink plus no top… is just asking for burns in the worst places. "Yes, I'd be close. I'm glad you like the idea as much as I do. Healing is what I was born to do. I know that much. So you remember that if you're ever injured, aye?"

"The club is loud. So, if your … amulet guy is raunchy, no one will hear him unless you…" Jack grins, thinking of a way of making everyone hear it. However, if the spirit is sentient, he wouldn't put it past him to do exactly that. So, he cuts off his words. Look at this. Her affliction may actually be good for his self control. "Yeah, sometimes I take Myfawny — the little dragon down on the cabinet down there — with me when I travel. It sometimes helps. There are times I forget, though." She may not have meant 'blankie', but that's how he took it. "Yeah, I think I was pretty much born to be a cursebreaker. I think I'd be a detective or a researcher into old artifacts if I were a Muggle. I tell Muggle girls I'm an archaeology student." It is pretty similar. "Hopefully, I won't need that," he knocks on the wood of the headboard, "but if I am, I will happily submit to your tender ministrations." He grins brightly. "Well, or any other time you wish, too." He sips at his tea, pasting on an innocent look for her. It probably fails completely.

Catching the fact that he cuts off his words, Maura's expression is at first curious and then… very deliberately not curious. Yeahno. Not giving her angry litle spirit a chance to cause that sort of fuss if she can help it. "I saw that. You really take him with you?" He may not have said that in a brogue, but it's nearly as melt worthy, making her sigh. "I alays did find that fascinating. Old cultures. And… anthropology, that's it. They use the artifacts archeologists find, and try to piece together a culture based on that. Among other things." The way her head tilts suggests there's something nagging there at the bag of her mind. Trying to tug on a memory. But it's gone as swiftly as it came in the first place, to be replaced by a near accident of coffee snorting out the nose. "That look… oh my god. So funny!" she laaaaaaaughs. "You don't have to bother trying to look innocent if you're after tender ministrations. You just need to ask!"

The mock-affronted look may not work any better."Oi," Jack calls, placing a hand against his very bare chest. "Right in the heart." He grins and leans forward, avoiding the hot drinks to steal a kiss. "Mmm." He sighs. "Doctor, I think I have a heart problem. It seems to be beatin' verrah quickly." Uh-oh. Jack's found a new avenue of pick-up lines. They won't get old for a long while. "If you'd like to watch me work from time to time, and there's no … secrecy stuff involved, then you can. Maybe, if you've got that job, you can go with me on a trip during summer." He wouldn't be the first to bring a date. As long as none of the secrecy bonds are broken, it's okay. "If you … wanted to."

Lucky for Jack, Maura finds them terribly amusing. Or the amulet does. "You're quite incorrigible aren't you. I think I'm going to quite enjoy that." And she chuckles over the absolutely terrible pick-up line, even through the kiss. "I'd like that a lot, I think. I'm insatiably curious. About so many things. Er… except secrets, honest." She holds up her free hand there, swearing off the nosiness when it comes to secrets. "And I would love to go on a trip during the summer." she agrees easily, setting her coffee aside, then grabbing his tea and setting that aside. "Allow me to demonstrate." And hope the door buzzer doesn'r ring.

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