1995-12-11: Hot And Cold


Snape_icon.gif Siobhan_icon.gif

Scene Title Hot and Cold
Synopsis Severus and Siobhan do some preparatory work for the rescue of Emmy. Important discoveries are made.
Location Potions Classroom
Date December 11, 1995
Watch For wandless magic, complicated potions and the Name Game. Also, Snape gives praise.
Logger I am the Bad Wolf

There are four cauldrons aflame. Separate brews are simmering in each cauldron, and every few minutes, Severus Snape throws something in one of them. It's a well-practiced dance, and the man has it down pat. "In roughly five minutes, these will all need to simmer. If you like, we may use the simmering time to work on our other endeavor." He flexes the fingers of his left hand, remembering the feel of the magic as it came up through his arm. That's for in a few minutes though. Currently, he's still actively brewing. He points to one of the of the pots. "Stir that one twelve times clockwise, and then add two widdershins at the end." She may know this, but he will remind her anyway.

Siobhan, for her part, is contentedly crushing tender belladonna flowers into a sticky sort of paste. Only once she is satisfied with the consistency does she wipe her hands on a nearby towel and extend the ceramic bowl of paste toward her companion. She is no great theorist, but Siobhan has a knack for the hands-on work and an impeccable sense of instinctive timing that make her a more-than-capable assistant. Ducking under his arm even as she hands off the bowl of paste, she moves to the directed cauldron and follows his instructions. She hums under her breath while she works, but it's a soft Celtic folk melody - soothing and haunting in equal measure. Certainly not Celine Dion. "Have you been able to tap in without me waking it up, yet?" It's a quiet question; Siobhan is, it would seem, reluctant to break the calm that quiet brewing brings.

"Briefly, but only with great effort or with great …" Severus murmurs, appreciating the quiet of the brewing process himself. He allows his words to trail off while he looks at the paste, deems it acceptable and stirs it into the appropriate pot. "When the miscreants have annoyed me to an extreme level, it seems more easily accessible than when I attempt it while calm." He understands why this might be, theoretically, but it still unnerves him in practicality. "Do you also require great … intent?" Heaven forbid he mention emotions at all. He reaches over and stirs one of the cauldrons, counting his strokes as he does.

"I've found that it does what I want more … precisely when I'm scared or angry." Siobhan turns her head - presumably to glance at the other two cauldrons not currently receiving attention - and hides a smile that way. She has no issue with discussing her own emotions (on this) and the fact that he avoids the topic like the plague makes it just that little bit more fun. "Otherwise it's like … the broader my command, the less force I have to put into enforcing it. But that tends to have some … interesting results." Like accidentally setting part of the Room on fire. Yeah, that was a shining moment. "So it's like this constant balancing act. I've got to be specific enough not to cause unintentional damage but I can't get too specific without a huge effort." Feeling the timer set on her wand vibrate against her arm, she deftly makes the two turns widdershins and then moves down to the last simmering cauldron. Six turns clockwise and then let simmer. "Some of it's become a bit … instinctive, I guess would be the word. You saw what happened when Gaius drew his wand. It's like I saw danger and I just … reacted." Because there's no way there was time enough for conscious thought between the wand being pulled and the shield going up.

Snape muses on that as he works. He's completed these potions enough that the actual process of brewing has become a mindless, rhythmic thing, calming him and allowing him to think. "That may make it more difficult for me to master." He'll own up to this with her. "I am uncertain I would be able to — release that much control." He stirs one of the two still ones, watching the color rather than counting this time. "I was impressed with that display," though he said nothing of the kind. "It definitely demonstrated the practicality of the skill." A couple more stirs, and he lowers the fire on the brew just as it turns from mustard yellow to mandarin orange. "Does it help to focus on the magic itself, or does it help to focus on what you wish it to do? Texts were divided on that particular point." It's probably that different methods work better for different people, but this may be beyond Snape at the moment.

The six turns completed, Siobhan watches her current brew turn a rather satisfying shade of hot pink. With a glance to Severus for confirmation, she abandons it for her part of the table, reaching for the silver knife and carefully dicing knotgrass into 'bite-sized' pieces. "You might not have to," she offers softly. She knows him well enough by now to know that admission does not come easy. "I'm rubbish at self-control. You've seen how easily my temper gets away from me." The quiet 'snick' of the knife through the knotgrass is a comforting tattoo against the silence. "Working with Jethro's helped, though - with my temper and my magic - so maybe it's just that hard for me because control isn't my thing." She shrugs one shoulder, gently pushing the diced bits into a small pile off to one side as she moves down the long stalks. "I have to focus on what I want it to do." She finishes her cutting and scoops up the pieces into a sterling silver strainer. That strainer is slotted over a deep bowl before she lifts the cask of glacier water, pouring it slowly over the diced grass. "Then again, I spent a lot of time early on just sort of poking at it. I'd find it and - " Here she balks, not really knowing a polite way to say 'basked in it'. "Studied it." There, that'll work. "Tugged at it until I worked out how to pull little strings off the main core." Which could be why she doesn't have to focus on the magic. It's become an integral part of her like mind or body.

Snape puzzles over her words as he finishes the other potions. They're all looking good, and he spares a sharp, approving nod for her work before moving to take his seat for a moment. "The analogy is a difficult one to understand." However, he may have a comparison. "So, much like the … mass inside Peate's head. You attempted to manipulate it, and instead of having negative effects, there were neutral ones, and you learned how to manipulate the streams of magic that emenated from the mass at that point." He's not going to say, 'You poked at the blob and stuff happened', but that's basically what he means. And as for 'streams'? His magic is water-like. Can you blame him? "Let me see if I can perceive what you are talking about." He frowns, and falls unnaturally still, drawing his attention down along the lines of his magic. He wants to try this at least once without her help.

Lifting the silver strainer, Siobhan shakes it lightly to dislodge any drops still clinging to the underside and moves it over to that far cauldron. A pinch is sprinkled in a figure-eight across the top and then stirred in. She repeats this until the damp grass is gone and the brew has faded to a shimmering, glossy white. The flame is turned up on this one and then she turns, watching him a moment before hopping up to sit on the near corner of his desk. "Kind of, yeah. Only at the base of the head, deep in the center. That's how I knew what I was seeing at first. It was like my sun or your ocean, but … toxic." She knows better than to interfere when he's all but told her not to, but that doesn't mean she isn't watchful and - silently, she's not suicidal - cheering him on.

It takes a bit of effort, but Severus stills his mind and body without any external need. He traces the pathway down toward his magical core, finding the green, dark, roiling ocean of raw magic. He isn't sure of what she means by 'prodding at' the liquid, so he imagines what some of his younger snakes might do, indeed what they do to each other. Poking, prodding, needling, the whole works. He 'touches' it lightly, watching to see how it reacts, his head tilting slightly as he catalogues the reaction. "It is an odd sensation, to be sure." He pushes just a little harder, letting the magic 'splash' through his system. "Ahhh. I begin to see. It is much like the same reaction strong emotions evoke." He considers, the theory he's read running through his mind. His fingers tap idly on the desk, not breaking the stillness within. "Perhaps this … 'poking' has a similar effect as the emotional jolt danger gives." It's adrenaline. "It may constrict the main pool — or main light source, I suppose in your case," Snape interjects a little bit of humor into his words, "and from there, the excess pours through your outer extremities." He pushes just a little harder, and a small wisp of smoke pulses out from his fingertip. It's a start.

Siobhan finds it interesting, the subtle play of emotions across a familiar face when its owner doesn't realize he's being watched. To her delight, she can recognize almost all of them. Life is made easier when one can anticipate a coming storm - even a few seconds' warning can make a difference. That satisfaction of understanding is dimmed when he starts going on about … constricting and excess and extremities. Good thing she's not a teenage boy. She'd have taken then whole thing wrong. As it is, she wrinkles her nose and groans - just a little. "Yeah, sure. That's what I meant." Anything to get him to stop overcomplicating something when her simplicity works for her. "You pull a bit off, push it down your arm and give it a job." Paraphrasing, with a touch of Sio's own attitude thrown in.
Crossing one leg over the other to get a bit more comfortable on her desk-perch, she nods at that wisp of smoke. "That's all I could do at first, remember?" Only hers burnt her. How unfair is that? "Here, try this." More comfortable with his strange personal boundaries since the days of brewing and practice necessitate some touch, she reaches down to grasp his writing hand by the wrist, her small fingers not quite able to wrap all the way around. A short burst of sunshine works from the wrist bone outwards, soothing the minor but painful damage caused by hours and hours of gripping a quill for the marking of angry red lines across hapless student papers. "I figured that out with Kee the other day. You don't even have to know what bit it is you need to fix or how, just that you want it to be better, to stop hurting." Her head tilts to one side in thought. "It'd be hard on someone you don't like, I guess - unless you're nice enough to really want them not to hurt even if they're an arse - but just now and when I did it to Kee it was a breeze." Broad intent, less effort - this should be an easy lesson, right? "Try it."

Snape is almost prepared when she grabs his arm so that he's only a little startled. He grasps her wrist with his other hand, gently, still keeping his eyes closed yet somehow aware of her location, and pushes just a little. Where her magic is warm, inviting, bright and cheerful, his is cooling, dark, hidden, with just a tang of something metallic. "Did that ease something?" He isn't sure what to expect, or even how this should work. His way is usually much more controlled and more specific. "I cannot be sure that …" He cuts himself off as he realizes that's not the point. The point is to see how it works and whether this method will work for him as well as it works for her. Opening a single eye, he does frown slightly at her when she speaks. "Kee?" He might have an idea of whom she is referring, but he wants to be sure.

Siobhan - who burns hot and intense - is both soothed by the cool darkness and intrigued by the sense of things hidden and that strange metallic tang. "Feels good," she admits easily, leaning ever so slightly into the sensation. "But not like … " She pauses, her thumb making idle circles against the jut of his wrist while she thinks. She likes things to be practical - not necessarily straightforward, but hands-on. He's so cranial it's a wonder he doesn't drown in his own head. "I broke my arm as a kid when I fell off the roof." Jumped, more like, but that's neither here nor there. "See if you can find where the bone scarred - " at least that's how her healer explained it to eight-year old Sio " - and warm it just a little." Very cranial, very specific and a challenge. If she knows him even half as well as she thinks she does, this just might do the trick.

Snape is intrigued by the order, so he tilts his head, closing his eye again. He pushes at his magic again, imagining it less as a lake of still, stagnant water and more as a river coursing through him. He inhales, imagines something squeezing the water through the channel, and waits. When the magic begins to respond a little, he turns his focus outward toward Siobhan's arm. He grasps it gently, running a finger along her forearm to see if he can sense with his magic where it might have been. He feels — something. It may not be the right thing, but he assumes it may be what she is discussing. He takes a moment to think about warming her arm. However, he doesn't set a temperature or 'level', so it begins to get a little warmer than it ought. He jerks his hand away, leaving a red mark on her skin much like a scald. His concentration is shot, and he starts to tamp down on the whole thing in self-recrimination. "My apologies, Miss Noble," he offers, pulling his manners around him like his black cloak.

Siobhan can feel that magic tracing with his finger up her arm. It's not at all a bad sensation, but it causes her to shiver nevertheless. When he does, in fact, find the place where her arm had snapped, she can't suppress a bright grin - nor does she want to. The rising heat is yet another victory, so Siobhan can't even be upset when it goes to an extreme - though it seems Severus is upset enough for the both of them. It's not a pleasant sensation, but it's a small pain, one she can put aside for just a moment. A soft 'shh' escapes her lips before she even properly realizes what she's doing. His other wrist - still in her hand - gets a brush of sunshine that feels less safe and more affectionate all at once; it's not one she consciously initiated. It really is becoming a part of her. "My name is Siobhan," she returns, gentle but firm. Reaching with her other hand to try and bring his free hand back against her arm, she raises her eyes to his and gives a quiet command. "Now, fix it."

'Fix it.' Just like that. Severus scowls. "I am wary of inflicting more damage." But he really wants this skill, and is willing to work for it. "However," he comments, "I shall attempt it." Totally ignoring the jibe about her name, he looks inward to find the center and the cool, rolling lake again. It's becoming much easier with practice. He squeezes it, feeling it spill, cool and pleasant, through his limbs. A thought occurs to him, and he focuses his attention on the hand near her arm, thinking of wider conduits to allow for more liquid to flow through at once. "Hmmmm…" Much like her sunshine warms her arm, his 'water' cools it, and the strength of the magic seems to correspond to the lowering of the temperature. That is an important distinction for him. He thinks in generalities about 'fixing things', and touches her arm in the same place.

Though the magic itself is cooling, and applies itself to her skin like a cooling compress, something paradoxical happens beneath the surface. The magic seems to warm a little as it goes deeper within her arm, warming the muscle, easing her own aches from casting or writing. It continues going deeper, the warmth just enough to be comfortable as it begins to send an invigorating pulse of healing magic into the cells. It only lasts a few seconds, but it's enough that her skin is cool and her arm is warm inside. It won't ache for a while, probably. He pulls his arm back, opens his eyes, and stares at his hand with something akin to wonder.

If the scowl wasn't such a frequent visitor in Severus' queue of facial expressions, it might have a bit more weight with Siobhan. As it is, the young professor merely raises a brow, watching her friend with the silent equivalent of 'So?'. Vindicated by his willingness to try again, she patiently submits. She does expect he'll manage to fix the burn - or at least to soothe it. What she doesn't expect is the rush of chill that becomes heat, leaving in its wake a fizzy sensation like pins and needles but … but good. It's enough of a surprise that she gasps out loud, her head falling back against her shoulders and her eyes sliding closed. When he pulls his hand back, she rolls her head to one side, watching him with a smile as warm as her magic blooming slowly across her face. One gentle squeeze of his wrist and she lets that too slide from her touch, folding her arms over her stomach and letting him once more have his distance. "It's amazing, isn't it?" she asks quietly, something akin to reverence in her tone. "The power to cause pain in one instant and heal every ache I think I've ever had in my arm the next - literally at your fingertips." There is something about power that attracts every snake in some way, Siobhan is no different. "The more you use it, the more you work with it, the more it becomes like second nature. I can't remember what it felt like not to feel my magic." Although part of that could be the painting-business. Something like a mix between satisfaction, affection and pride settles itself over her features, even as she sits back and nods once in his direction. "If we master this, neither one of us will ever be helpless again." Even disarmed. To Sio, at least, that is huge.

That last is a draw to Severus as well, but the important thing to him is the power. He gauges her reactions, eyebrow lifting at her enjoyment of his magic. His lips turn up just slightly in a smirk, and he shakes his head, drawing his hand back to his side. "It is — a novel experience," he finishes lamely. "I have never experienced the like. I shall have to experiment more on my own." With the intensity and attention he gives every task, it won't be long until he's figured out his own method and mastered it at least to his own satisfaction. "I can certainly see the draw of never being unarmed." The smirk widens just a little more.

There's a certain pragmatism to accepting that something feels good without being ashamed of it. Siobhan is nothing if not practical - a family trait, perhaps. She isn't bothered by the raised brow; it only adds an element of cat-who-got-the-cream to her lazy smile. Neither does she call him on his understatement. She knows what he means, he knows what he means. The rest is all fluff. "Never being unarmed, never being constricted to the uses of magic that have spells for them. Easier to cast without notice, quicker response time and - " her personal favorite " - you can curse someone and punch them all in one go."

Snape snorts, his own pragmatism enjoying the truth of her words. "Yes, Siobhan, I can see how that would be a draw for you." He drawls his jibe, rolling a shoulder to work out a kink. He stands, moving over to check on the potions still brewing, sniffing delicately at each to test their scent as well as the color he can see. One of them is near enough completion that he can extinguish the flame beneath it and let it finish cooking as it cools. He closes his eyes, trying again. It takes him a long moment, but a thin stream of water appears beneath the cauldron, putting out the fire. "That was …" He isn't sure how to explain it. "I did not give it a specific directive. Instead of snuffing out the fire, as I might have done, it chose to use water." He pulls out his wand, siphoning up the water and cleaning the floor before they slide and fall on it. "Strange."

Is it really a jibe if the target isn't offended but, instead, amused? Grinning - and not in the least bit upset - Siobhan indulges herself in a childish response; she sticks her tongue out at him. His excitement and enthusiasm - yes, it seems he is capable of both - are contagious. Sio hops off her desk-perch and moves toward the tables at the back end of the room. "Yes, exactly! It's not like it's … alive or anything, but it definitely has a unique pattern to how it does things unless you specifically tell it otherwise." One flick of her wrist and the table closest to her crumbles into driftwood. Casual, easy. The easy follow-up of 'fix it' results in a sleek, shiny table; none of these tables have looked that good in years. Siobhan, after a moment's consideration, leaves it. "It's not always a bad thing, so long as you can be flexible - adaptable." Both traits they have in abundance. "I just have to figure out some sort of leverage for when I really need to be specific, because while the easiest way to get inside Riddle House would be to send the few people left as guards to sleep, right now my magic may very well interpret that as 'coma' or 'death'."

Snape snorts. "That may not be a strong issue." In other words, he's more willing to see his fellow Dark Mark wearers in that position than she may be. "But I see your point." He gazes at the table, even moving over to inspect it closely. It looks exactly like the others, but newer, more sturdy. "Fascinating." He frowns. "However, it is almost time to finish off these two potions." In other words, the subject is closed for the moment.

Siobhan shrugs. "I told you, if there's anyone you don't want dead…" Still, she rubs her hands over her upper arms, a frown pulling at her brow. "If they attack me first, then killing them is acceptable." She sounds strangly thoughtful, as though she's working through a grim necessity and finding where it fits in her personal code of ethics. "But I'd like to avoid a fight since it might be only me and Jack and V, so it's not really fair to kill them if they've not chosen to fight me." Knock them out? Sure, that's where the 'sleep' comes in. Just … no killing when there's a lack of choice involved. Glancing over at the two he's been most closely babysitting, Siobhan thinks she can recognize from this stage which is the Veritaserum antidote and which is the neuro-depressant that could mean the difference between staggering out alive after Cruciatus and being left to die on the floor. Or worse. "Sure." Both brews are important enough that Siobhan doesn't even put up the pretense of arguing - doesn't even make a jab about changing the subject. "What do you want me to do?" Because while both fascinate her, she could hope to brew neither one of them on her own, and she's eager - as always - to learn more.

"I shall take this one." Severus gestures to the Veritaserum Antidote. "It is slightly more difficult. Now, the trick with this one," he nods toward the other one, "is to wait until it is fully cooled, or to room temperature, and then place the ginger into the center of the potion, then re-light the fire at precisely the same temperature. It will slowly draw enough of the ingredient out that the color will change. When the color becomes exactly the shade mentioned," here he points toward the book, "then you must remove it and set it aside." He moves to start work on the other potion, chopping up jasmine and flobberworm and making a paste of his own. He trusts that she'll get that done. "I appreciate the distinction you make, but it may not always be possible."

Listening carefully, Siobhan moves to stand next to him, her hand hovering over the cooling liquid to ascertain its temperature. Just about there - must have been put out when Severus splashed water on the ground. To the table, then, where she carefully selects a fat specimin of dried ginger root and peels away the very outside layer of skin. "And those times where it isn't possible, I'll have to make the choice that protects the people I'm responsible for and learn to live with the result." She doesn't sound happy about it, but she's not arguing the necessity. She's seen too much nastiness for that. The ginger root is brought to the cauldron, then. She taps out her wand - specificity is a must, here - and lowers the root into the center of the concoction, flicking her wand under the cauldron and igniting it to the same degree as before. It's a good thing Sio set these fires, otherwise the guesswork could have been disastrous. A glance to the book to remind herself of the proper shade and then Siobhan is focused on the cauldron. Well, she's mostly focused. "You lived there for a while, didn't you?" Or at least spent a lot of time there. "Where's the most likely place to keep a seven year old girl?"

Snape smashes the flobberworms into paste, mixing the jasmine in slowly, letting most of what Siobhan says go uncontested. When she asks him a question outright, he frowns. "I am uncertain." He grabs a spatula, scraping the goopy substance into the pot, stirring it with the spatula exactly three full turns clockwise with each dollop of paste. "There are four bedrooms, I believe. One, you recall its use. One is for the Dark Lord himself and his familiar, and then there are the other two. I am uncertain whether she would be in one of those rooms, or perhaps the outbuilding. There is a small outbuilding which used to be the gardener's room until — recently." It doesn't take too much effort to surmise what may have happened to the poor gardener. "Those would be the places I would check first, should I be on this trip." He looks down at the last little bit, measuring it with his eyes, and then flicks his wand to turn the heat on. This one of the more difficult parts. He stirs the potion a little more, watching it as a smoke starts to rise from it. When the smoke gets to a certain height, he stirs the last of the goop in with the silver knife, then sets the knife aside before stirring several times widdershins. Quickly. The smoke dissipates, and the color changes again. "The key will be twofold. It will be heavily guarded, and the Dark Lord will have some way to keep track of it himself. He will not pay attention to the place constantly, mind, but when he is alert or may want an update, he will consult his ward, or other method to ensure she is still present. Most of the time, if he is assured of security, it is a very basic ward. Your brother should have no problem whatsoever with it." The guards, on the other hand…

Mention of that room has Siobhan's grip on the ginger tightening to white-knuckle intensity. Jaw clenched, she inhales slow, deep breaths. It doesn't take nearly as long as it used to, the reorganization of her mind; whether being able to efficiently bury unpleasant memories instead of dealing with them is a good thing or not, well … that remains to be seen. "The outbuilding would be almost too much to hope for." Because that would be ideal. She remains focused intently on the slowly changing shade of her brew, watching it like a hawk even as she rolls over all this information in her mind. "I wish you were coming," she mutters, holding the ginger root submerged for another half second before lifting it free. "I know, I know. Horses and beggars and all that. Doesn't change the fact that I'd feel better having you there." Discarding the ginger, she bends over the book, tracing the instructions for the next step with her finger. "Some of the things Valentina said …" She frowns, turning to lower the flame to an easy simmer. "I'm worried about Jas. He might not come at all and if he does come … " Heaving a sigh and deciding to bite the bullet - even though she knows this leaves her wide open for mockery - she leans her hip against her work table and folds her arms over her chest. "Valentina is worried that he won't take orders from a teenage girl." Which - even though she doesn't feel like one much anymore - is technically what she is.

Snape is on the last step of this potion, and he finishes it quickly, sprinkling in several handfuls of bark that was shredded off an ingredient for another potion. He remains silent, watching where the flakes fall before adding the next sprinklinkg. After all of them coat the surface of the potion, only then does he stir, sniffing the air above the cauldron as he does. He incrementally lowers the flame as he stirs, counting seconds rather than strokes. By the time it reaches a full minute, the fire is extinguished completely. "Lancaster …" He purses his lips, and frowns. "It is my understanding that he will do whatever he deems necessary for the survival of his child. However, the issue is not going to be his intent, but rather his intelligence." A wry twist of the lips indicates that Snape doesn't think very highly of that particular attribute. "It would ease things were I there." He would feel better, too, in other words.

Siobhan watches his procedure with interest - watch and do, that's her methodology. "He does seem to care about her quite a lot." Which could only raise him in her opinion. "And he's never really given me reason not to trust him…" And yet she still seems incredibly uncomfortable. The war between fond childhood memories and a much harsher reality is one that seems to be constantly waging in young Siobhan. "But I don't think Valentina would lie to me, either. Not with Emmy at stake. She's almost as protective as I am." And that realization seems to seal something for Siobhan. Pain - some aching mix between wistfulness and nostalgia - crosses her expression, but with several long, slow, deep breaths she buries it behind a blank mask. When she opens her mouth to continue, her voice is flat. "Will you be able to give me a rough floor plan? Things look so different through the portraits and I don't want to have to rely on him for direction." Just in case.

"I can certainly do that." And Severus flicks his wand, concentrating on the layout of the house, specifiying several key important things, and the image appears on the blackboard. He frowns, concentrating on the image, checking it for accuracy. "There is your floor plan. I believe it is correct as recent as my last trip to the building." He gestures toward the desk. "When you have finished that, you may copy it down, if it will help." If not, he could probably do that on a piece of parchment, but it's an ingrained habit to put the information up on the board and let the others copy it down. Severus has no more specific input on the Lancasters' care for their daughter, but he does have this to say: "Should Mister Lancaster feel your skills are less than adequate, remind him of two things: you are a professor, well accepted not only by the Headmaster, but by your fellow faculty, and the supposed 'Savior -of-theWizarding-World' is indeed three years younger than yourself. Age has never been indicative of skill, merely experience. And as you are so apt to suggest, experience you have gathered in cauldrons full."

Unable to resist a roll of her eyes, Siobhan checks the color on the brew simmering in the cauldron and deems it correct. She taps her wand out into her hand, then - first snuffing out the fire and then turning to stare at the image on the board, absorbing it into short-term memory and then tapping her wand against the top sheet of blank parchment on her work table. While the space is slowly filled with the details of the blackboard sketch, she works at decanting the two potions already cooled in their cauldrons - doses for each person going on this mad venture. "Circe I wish I'd known that spell in class." She clenches her writing hand, reminded by the ease of the motion just how powerful that short burst of magic was. "Pity we can't - with all this at our fingertips - just find a way to keep you from being recognized." But there are always drawbacks. And then… And then he goes off and pays her quite possibly the highest compliment she's ever from him received. Color suffuses Siobhan's cheeks, even as she stoppers the last of the cooled vials and places the lot inside a velvet-lined box - each vial with its own 'nook'. Keeping her head down as she turns to add missing details to the wand-powered sketch, she finishes rather quickly and folds it up to stick in her pocket. A few sweeps of her wand clean her station and a few more clean the now-empty two cauldrons on her end. "I'll just put these with the others, shall I? I can come get those from your sitting room when they're done." Awkward!Sio is off-balance and not nearly as verbose as usual. Since she has no idea what to do with high praise from Severus without delving into the trite or maudlin, she takes the wiser (snakier) course and opts for a strategic retreat. With a snick to seal the box and a click to secure her wand in its holster, she's off.

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