1995-06-27: Home Again, Barely


Tiana_icon.gif Gabriel_icon.gif Rene_icon.gif Egbert_icon.gif Melissa_icon.gif

Scene Title Home Again, Barely
Synopsis The Hogwarts Express has seen better days.
Location Platform 9 3/4
Date June 27, 1995
Watch For The French
Logger Egbert

Watching the troll amble off into the distance, Tiana ushers Harry through the tunnel before her, following him all the way down to the platform before turning around to survey the damage.

The train is in shambles. Nothing magic can't fix, but the sight is dreadful all the same. Sheathing her wand in…well, somewhere - can't quite see where it goes - she turns to the assembled children and taps the side of her throat with her index finger. "Is anyone hurt?" Magically enhanced, her voice carries even to the furthest children back. "Prefects, do a roll count for your Houses and report to me. I do not want anyone unaccounted for."

Gabriel follows along still with Melissa, though seems to be relaxing now the troll is gone. He lets go of her hand finally as the professor has the prefects start to count them. To those near him, he comments, "That was the scariest thing I've ever seen."

Everybody is indeed accounted for; discounting a few students that were close to breaking down from the freshness of it all, everyone also seems to be doing well emotionally. Ignore the fact that now the kids are likely to be physically and metaphorically clinging to one another as they wind their way out onto the platform proper, led in the way by Tiana and the prefects interspersed through the lines and bringing up the rear.

Up ahead is the crowd that they all had expected to see upon arrival- parents, families, the Express employees- virtually crowded around the various pathways that had been otherwise blocked just moments before. Because of this, the wave of noise is first chaotic. It morphs into jubilation and relief as the first stream of kids come out of the service entrance.

The first wave of parents practically assaults them as they get there, but there is one crackling voice that comes up above some others as he calls out and moves closer. "Rene!" The man weaving his way forward breaks into a jog when he has the space; perhaps it sounds cheesy, though it does not look it- Rene ducks past some taller students to meet his father halfway across the rest of the platform, dropping the suitcase at the man's boots when he is swept up off his own. Maybe Rene jumped a little too. In any case, he is now plastered to his father, arms around his neck.

You couldn't tell it was his old man- Vivien has scars all over, though certainly not as bad as a certain DADA auror; his eyes are the same blue, and his hair short and blond. He's dressed somewhat in the same way- looking mildly like he stepped out of a steampunk fiction.

A woman who's obviously either a muggle or someone who's studied them heavily runs into the crowd to grab hold of Gabriel. A man some might recognize as Randal Baker, the former pro Chaser and current WWN announcer, follows close behind. Gabriel starts to babble the story right away as he clings to his parents.

Soon after, Egbert spots his parents - and ducks behind a support beam, in a futile attempt to not be seen right away. This is an awkward moment that he's been fretting about for weeks now. To no avail; they spot him at about the same time, rushing over— well, they're doing some avoiding of their own, as the absence of their daughter goes unremarked. Instead, "oh, this must be that nice young girl you told us about!" says his mum, pointing out a nearby first-year in green robes. Egbert turns, looks… and the Slytherin, suddenly scenting an opportunity for mischief, promptly busts out her friendliest of friendly smiles.

Melissa comes over to see Egbert's parents. It takes a bit after they speak for her to realize they weren't talking about her- she looks toward the Slytherin girl. "…What's she all smiling for? They just met last night, am I right?" she asks, looking toward Egbert.

Vivien D'Allemagne is of normal height for a man, so when he has to put his son down finally, there is a second's worth of bending before the gentle thud of shoes. The man's build is one borne of constant outside work- the lines of his face are somewhat weathered, and his muscle well-formed. He barely puts out an effort in hugging his son and putting him down again, one forearm slung around the boy's shoulders in a protective gesture that some other parents seem to adopt.

There is a chattering coming from Rene- no, wait, he's talking animatedly in French, hands latched onto the front of his father's leather-hemmed waistcoat. True to form, his father's eyes widen at the explanation, same as multiple parents now getting the story relayed to them. Rene's face gets mushed into his father's torso when he's grasped tighter, for all the world looking like an old wolf and the pup he thought he lost.

Gabriel's mother reacts differently. As soon as Gabriel gets to the point of the roof caving in, she starts looking around at all the children. "Is anybody hurt? I have my medical kit in the car." Gabriel looks around, shaking his head a little, and says, "I don't think so… except the engineer, and he's still inside." She almost moves past towards the platform, but Gabriel's father stops her. He's been listening to the story too, and knows what it means. He just shakes his head.

The girl standing behind Egbert is soon swept up by her own parents, but manages to get out a sentence or two before she goes. And that's all it takes, really. "What can I say, he just swept me off my feet— oh, sorry, I've got to go, but you simply must come and visit over the summer! I'll write!" And then she disappears into the crowd with her family, leaving him momentarily too stunned to say a word.

Melissa gapes, looking between the place the girl was and Egbert. "…Is there something I'm missing here?" she asks him. "You, and the girl who thought you failed your exams? That would be terrible taste… Not that I believe her of course," she says, looking away to hide her uncertainty. "…Anyway, I'm Melissa," she says to Egbert's parents. "I'm probably the one he was talking about… at least I hope so," she says, with a bit of an edge.

Breath muffled in his father's vest, Rene allows Vivien to coddle him for those few seconds before he is let to get fresh air. "«I'm fine, really. I'm not so sure about the poor train.»" His hands go up to pry his father's hands from his upper arms, glancing back at at least a couple classmates now snickering at them.

"«What if he'd been on the train with you kids? What then?»" Vivien's words are now fuming, and less jumbled. "«I've no doubt I'm going to have some words soon- maybe I should just do that now. Go find your mother-»" But as it is, she has found them first. Rene's face meets stomach for the second time, only this turn it is his stepmother's baby bump. All she does otherwise is send Vivien a warning glance with her smoldering eyes, just as he touches her lightly on the shoulder and moves away from them.

"We're fine!" Rene exclaims, all of a sudden(and in plain English), drawing a couple looks.

Gabriel glances over to Rene at his English outburst as well, but nods quickly in agreement as he looks up to his own parents. His mother is still looking over the crowd, looking for any sign of injuries, while his father asks some more quiet questions of Gabriel about what happened.

Egbert's father arches a brow - he might have seen Melissa come out of the train with Gabriel - but, fortunately, says nothing. Egbert, for his part, finally regains his voice and turns to Melissa, nodding quickly. "Of course I— I mean, of course you are. Mum, dad, this is Melissa." Simple bit of confusion, green and blue look a bit alike from a distance.

Melissa looks relieved as Egbert acknowledges his parents' mistake. "Hi," she says again. "I knew there wasn't anything to what that girl said… I'm sorry if I sounded suspicious," she says to Egbert, pushing up her glasses again. Soon, Melissa's mother Jennie arrives. She looks over the scene. "Oh, Melissa, there you are…" she says. "Is this one of your friends from school?" she asks, looking toward Egbert and his parents. "Ahh…" Melissa says, turning a bit red. "Yeah… this is Egbert…" she says.

Rene's stepmother is much more gentle with her relief; she's a slender woman with a gentle touch, weighted slightly by pregnancy. She whispers something to Rene, still taken aback by himself and his father's final reaction. He settles in with Adele, letting her lead him away from the noise and bustle of parents and children once he picks up his case again.

After a few moments, Gabriel's mother finally seems to be satisfied that nobody's needing medical treatment, and turns her attention back to Gabriel. "Let's get you back to your father's. Then we can discuss whether you'll be going back to that school if they allow stuff like this to happen." Gabriel blinks, following along quickly, "But mum!" Soon, they're out of view.

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