1995-11-05: Sketches and Lists


Siobhan_icon.gif Rene_icon.gif Julian_icon.gif

Scene Title Sketches and Lists
Synopsis Bean sneaks out to the greenhouses to sketch something for Herbology. He is followed, and preceded. Discussion ensues.
Location Greenhouses
Date November 05, 1995
Watch For Toothy Flowers and Mouthy Slytherins
Logger Julian Legume

Sunday afternoon is nasty - cold and grey and drizzling. No one in their right mind would be outside in this weather. Except, of course, that someone is. Dressed in a light 'gypsy' skirt of teal that sits low over her hips and a cream-colored camisole, Siobhan is moving through the greenhouse kept warm and moist for those plants that require such temperatures year 'round. A device that looks surprisingly like a gramophone sits in one corner, playing folk music at a fairly loud volume. Instead of the scratchy, tinny tones one would expect from such an antiquated-looking machine, it sounds almost as if the music is coming live. Working around a table of plants that look suspiciously as if they are moving, Siobhan is dancing a little, swaying her hips and singing along. "Siuil, siuil, siuil a run." Scraps of … something that looks an awful lot like meat are strewn among the soil. "I'll sell my rod, I'll sell my reel. I'll sell my only spinning wheel to buy my love a sword of steel. Is go dte tu mo mhuirnin slan" Fingertips stroke down the stems of plants that still seem like they're moving, Sio's voice - not amazing or highly trained, but sweet and pleasant and familiar - soothing normally snappish temperaments.

It is Sunday afternoon. Which means, unfortunately, that Bean's Herbology homework is due tomorrow. He scampers toward the greenhouses, hoping no one will catch him sneaking in. He's usually pretty good at — He pauses at the door, listening to a familiar voice. "Dammit," he mutters to himself, trying to pull himself up to see through the door's window. It's way up there. "Oh, well, nothing for it, I guess." He pushes the door open slowly, not wanting it to creak overly much. When he enters and sees what she's doing, he chimes in after a couple of moments of listening, a sweet, prepubescent soprano joining her own on the melody line.

It's hard to sneak places when someone else is halfway there- Rene glimpsed Bean running off down a corridor before he reached that particular intersection- so naturally, he found himself as much following as he was going to find Siobhan. It just so happens that it was the same, right? Rene is slightly more tentative about peeking in the door, a short time after Bean gets there; he hovers outside of the greenhouse doors to listen, flitting in his pacing, before he finally puts his hand to the knob and lets himself in. They both know he likes music- is this some sort of a trap? Last time he got someone into a song with him, there was a book hitting him in the back of the head. Must be a trap.

"Why don't I get to sing in the halls, then?" Rene accuses promptly upon his entering. Well, if it was a trap, it isn't so much now, is it?

"I'll dye my petticoats, I'll dye them red - then 'round the world I'll beg my bread until my parents shall wish me dead. Is go dte tu mo mhuirnin slan…" Bare feet make dry sliding sounds against the stone floor as Siobhan bounces and sways, humming to herself and trying something. Tiny wisps of golden smoke flicker against the places where her fingers brush along stems and blossoms and … teeth? The plants don't grow larger, but they do seem to become more vibrant in hue, more content to munch on the scraps of meat left them. Magical Venus Flytraps? At least they look that way. The joining of a familiar soprano voice makes Siobhan smile, dropping into a familiar mezzo harmony to the chorus, letting her stronger voice support the higher, lighter tones.

Letting herself indulge in a twirl that sends her skirt flaring around her legs as she turns, Siobhan grins down at her baby snakes, still swaying her hips in rhythm with the music. Her tiny wand is grabbed off the edge of the table she now faces - probably the first time either has seen her without it strapped firmly to her forearm - and flicks it at the device. Instantly the volume lowers enough for casual conversation without losing the sweet melodies and rhythm of the dance. "Does this look like a hallway to you?" Siobhan chirps cheerfully, obviously yanking his chain - just a little. "I'd expected to be working alone, today." Actually, she'd been counting on it. A gaze is flicked over her shoulder towards the plants-with-teeth, but whatever she'd done earlier seems to have them content to chew their scraps quietly for now. "There are some rather deadly growths in here."

"There's also some perfectly — well, mostly — harmless flowers over there in the corner." Bean points. "And I have to sketch and label them." He grins, and executes a twirl that looks remarkably like Siobhan's own steps. "I just needed to draw the picture." He still doesn't have permission to be down here without an adult. Which, technically, he's not. "That's kind of cool!" He notices her touch doing something to the plants. "It's like you're feeding them sunshine, innit?" He grins brightly at her, and then turns to Rene. "That, and it's not that French song with the naughty words, either." Which song makes him giggle a bit.

Rene cannot help himself. He toes closer to where the trap-plants are potted, peering at them with curiosity. Though he does not get close enough to possibly disturb the dinnertime, as he knows how things can get when you interrupt that essential. "What lovely foliage- and the texture is nice. Sturdy stalks, too. What mighty little beasts you are…" Because plants apparently have things like that. For a few moments, he appears drawn like a moth to a flame.

"I-" He finally looks away to Siobhan, clearing his throat and laughing when Bean mentions one tune that he had best not sing in the halls (again). "I was only looking for you, to bring you the list. It is not much, but I should think- enough."

Eyeing Bean with a touch of dry humor and resignation, Siobhan nods. "You are all of you too observant by half." It's not really a grumble, but between him and Claire, Siobhan is amused by the fact that her snakes are more valuable than anyone really, properly suspects. Reaching for a small leather journal on the table, she swats Bean on the shoulder with it lightly and uses it to gesture toward said plants. "Go make your drawings then, imp." It's a term of endearment, even if it is grumbled. Rene, then, gets her full attention. She watches him very, very carefully as he approaches her project and should he turn to her, he'll see an approving expression on her face for his wisdom in Not Touching. "Your Da taught you well." Sio's got a better appreciation for Rene's knowledge, now. She's found so much of it useful, herself. "All right, let's see it, then. Who all did you get?"

"I'm on there, right?" Bean gestures to the list as he wanders over to sketch his flowers. It's not that he can't draw, it's that he can, but it takes too much time and effort to draw it correctly. He yelps at the thwap from the book, then covers his mouth with his hands in an oddly juvenile gesture he probably hasn't done for a long time. Whether it's a calculated gesture, or time with children really is wearing off on him is unclear. He sits down on the floor cross-legged in front of the plants and begins drawing, tongue stuck out of his mouth just a little for good measure. It helps, you see.

Rene looks after Bean with a bit of a chuckle, sidling himself up beside Siobhan to make sure that he isn't accidentally yelling things about. "Yes, he is on there too." He starts, examining the rest of the greenhouse once over, as if to make sure nobody else is coming along. He puts down the short piece of parchment for her, with its names scribbled down, nondescriptly. "Claire was the second, Cianan the third-" These ones, Sio may know and not mind so much, but the next- "Pierrick, when I was asking him how he was finding school, it just seemed right. And- er- Ron." Rene all but laughs at himself, abruptly.

"They have the silliest little owl, you know, it wouldn't leave Aella be, the other morning. I thought that I might ask just one of them- I'm lucky that he didn't plug his ears, I suppose…" Maybe French Slytherin is different than Plain Slytherin. Or maybe it was because Rene and Ginny know one another. Any number of chance things, honestly. "And I suppose I tried because of what you've been saying, about all of us that are supposed to be together."

Siobhan nods approvingly, though Pierrick earns a grimace. "The French Gryffindor is … special." That seems to be the most diplomatic way that Siobhan can refer to the young lion. "But Ron's not entirely unexpected." She frowns, then, concentration wrinkling her nose. "I'd go ahead and pencil in Harry and Granger, too." She taps her forefinger on the parchment in thought. "Where one goes, the other two have an alarming tendency to follow." Harry coming doesn't bother her so much - especially in light of certain promises - but there's no disguising her reluctance to deal with the female point in the Gryffindor Triangle. It's like Bermuda, only more predictable and less prone to creativity. Brown gaze flicks to Bean, then, including both of them in the next question. "What've you been hearing, then? This place is never quiet."

"I just take the I, the E and the extra R out of his name. Sounds more like …" Bean begins, mentioning the 'French Gryffindor' in question. "He sure lives up to it." He scribbles a little more on the picture, looking up at the flowers in question. He draws neat, straight lines from the important parts out toward the edge, giving himself a very good set of lines for labeling that don't severely interfere with the picture itself. "I've heard a few things about that new guy you were dancing with, Noble." He hesitates to mention the ball, but does. "Lancaster. Morsen in Gryffindor said he looked like a Banshee. 'Course, this was right after he'd popped up out of nowhere near the boys' loo, and it was dark. Man could look a bit pale in the right light. Kind of like that Healer that came to take old Mac away?" He grins, remembering the scene well. "Did you hear that, Frenchy?" Julian looks over at the other boy for a few moments. "I don't mind those three too much. She doesn't quite get the whole thing of life being more than the words on the page, though. More 'Claw than Gryff to me. How that bloody hat sorts out houses is a mystery to me. I think it got a few wrong." He doesn't seem to notice he's slipping back into swearing, but that's because his mouth is running as he's labeling. Sort of a second track, so to speak. "Weasley's owl is a cute little menace."

"P, I, E, R-" Rene has to take a moment to mull that one over, and when he does, he snorts loudly. "He's pretentious, yes." Blue eyes roll a little to the side. Anyway. He nods along when Siobhan adds the others of the three. It makes him a mite more nervous, but that's that. It shows a moment on his features when he looks to Bean, too. "I think if they all want to come, then it would be a good experience."

"That hat." Rene clucks his tongue and shakes his head. "That hat told me I was all sorts of things. I think that it just makes things up as it goes along, honestly."

Now that makes Siobhan snort. "Prick. Bean, you're a menace," she returns fondly. "If I slip up in class and call him that, I'm blaming you." Now the formality in the addressing of students starts to make just a glimmer of sense in the back of her head. Mention of the ball darkens her expression - it's not embarrassed anguish or anything nearly so poetic now that she's made her apologies - but when the rumor settles into her brain, she nearly chokes on her own laughter. "Jas? A banshee?" Oh he'll love that one. "I've known him since I was smaller than you." Smaller, meaning she was really young. "And James Lancaster is not a banshee." Although him sneaking around student bathrooms is a bit … creepy. Even for Jas. "Artemis came to get that loon?" She'd thought her Healer had his own private practice, so the fact that Mungo's sent him … confuses her. Ignoring further mention of the one student who manages to get under her skin quicker than anyone, Siobhan instead responds to mention of the Hat. "Thing's a bloody menace, if you ask me." Nope, she's not watching her language either.

"He seemed nice enough. I was too busy with the arrow thing to notice." Once you got past the banshee rumor mill, Rene supposes. "We can say all that we want about the Sorting Hat, but I cannot deny that he has the ability to weave a tune off the- cuff? Brim?" He scratches thoughtfully at his jawline, rolling small shoulders in a shrug. "The hat has worked so far, I cannot totally fault him. Even Beauxbatons cannot approach the age of Hogwarts, nor really its success."

"I had best get going. I need to find my extra parchment before I can finish my essays." Rene lifts his hand in a short flip of goodbye, tipping his head to them as if he were wearing a hat. "My prose is flowery, thankfully Professor Flitwick seems to like that." A busy little bee, the boy is sidling for the door even before he finishes the explanation, and after finishing, slinks out of sight.

"Just call him by his surname, and you won't have an issue," Bean comments blithely. "And blame me all you want. I don't care." He's still drawing and talking. "You were smaller than me?" This is news to the very small boy. "I didn't know they made them smaller than me." Now his friend-turned-professor has his full attention, though it's mainly to see the reaction to his teasing tone. "Was that who that was?" He didn't get the Healer's name. He was still wondering about the Waldo book and the patronus and the fire and the water and … He's a smart boy, but even he has a limited number of tracks.

He returns to his writing, waving offhandedly to Rene. "Later, Frenchy." He finishes up the picture and rolls the scroll up. "It takes forever to get the drawing right." It's mainly because his mind insists on photographic likeness. "He has such fancy prose becasue his brain is coming from French. Do you know how many words it takes to say anything in French?"

"Off the brim? That Hat spends the whole year coming up with that song!" Siobhan rolls her eyes. "If you had a year to do it in, making a decent rhyme isn't that hard to do." Notice how she isn't volunteering for it, either. Rene's abrupt exit is met with a handwave and as the music shifts to a more sedate Celtic harp piece, Siobhan grabs the list he'd left her and settles in cross-legged next to Bean. It takes a minute to adjust her skirt, but she doesn't seem to mind. "Longer than the thought is worth, I'm sure," is her only dry response to questions of her French knowledge. Instead, she's going over the list again and again and again, turning ideas over in her mind and just as quickly discarding them. "Eight if we assume Granger and Harry will follow Ron." A little bit more math. "Three Slytherins, four Gryffindors and a Ravenclaw." She hmphs. "It sounds like the start to a really bad joke, is what. The Room should fit all of us without any trouble and it'll keep nosy old men from coming in if I ask it to." Of that, she only sounds reasonably sure. A glance is flicked over his drawing and Sio snorts. "So long as Sprout can recognize the plant, she won't dock points you know. Don't stress so much."

"Oh, I know." Bean has seen what everyone else turns in. It's not even recognizable to him at times. "But I need…" He shrugs. "No Hufflepuffs?" That's surprising to him. "Surely there are a few Badgers interested in it? Since, you know, it'll be good hard work." He giggles, knowing that there's more to the Puff child than just their insistence on keeping busy with lots of hard work. "It takes all year to write that poem?" He frowns, starting to quote the one from years' beginning. "It wasn't that good." He shakes his head, curls bouncing. "I probably should go put this with the rest of my work." Julian gestures down to his scroll. "And leave you to your — whatever it was you were doing when we barged in." He snickers again.

Reaching out to squeeze his shoulder, Siobhan nods with a smile. "You need it to be right. It's okay, Bean." Her smile goes a bit wry and her tone goes a bit dry. "I've had some serious hands-on experience lately in dealing with a perfectionist. If it bothered me before, I can't remember." And now she's blissfully numb to it. "It isn't that bright a hat." Now, she just snickers at them. Quietly. From a distance. "I wouldn't underestimate the 'Puffs, if I were you," she cautions, watching him stand and then doing the same. "Have you ever pissed off a badger?" She gives a mock-shudder and sets the list back on the table, taking up the leather-bound journal to make some notes on the quality of the plants given that time has passed since she attempted a spell. "I started working with these last year." She gestures towards the slightly livlier-looking plants. "It was a cross-pollonation project for the NEWT-level class." Which would probably explain why they look … vicious. "The point was to get a tropical lily plant with larger blossoms so that you could get more nectar from each plant." Firelily Nectar is a valuable ingredient in several potions, after all. "But it had … some side-effects."

"Oh, I know about angry badgers. I saw one little firstie light into this big Ravenclaw. He backed off right away, and she just kept going. To be fair," he comments, "kid deserved it. He was torturing some other kid's familiar." He looks more closely at the plants. "Ohhh. That explains it." Why they look so weird to him. "Well, it's a magical construct, isn't it?" He returns to talking about the Sorting Hat for just a moment, then returns to the topic of the plants. "What kind of side effects?"

Siobhan snorts. "Good for her." Animal torture is right up there on Sio's list of Should Be In Azakaban (Or Castrated) offences. "I … actually, I have no idea. It's obviously got to have some sort of telepathy charm to get inside your head like that, but I don't know a spell that lets you … read some…one's … mind." Except she does, her words slowing as she realizes. "Now that's something to think about." She makes a mental note of that curiosity and files it away for later. The sudden shift back to her pet project, however, snaps her attention right smack into the present. "Uh, well, the teeth for a start." She reaches across the snapping plant to run her finger down the stem, smiling as the plant settles. "And the smell. It doesn't smell like a Firelily. It smells like … " She leans in to one of the bright blossoms and inhales appreciatively. "Like white tea and ginger." It's a scent combination she knows well. "Pomona says they're showing early signs of maturity, so we should be able to harvest some of the nectar soon and test it."

"Iiiinteresting." Julian says, standing up and slowly backing away. Not out of fear, but more out of teasing the other Slytherin. "I hope it goes well. It really looks like a neat project." He bounces on the balls of his feet, and grins. "I've got to go put this up before it gets messed up." He is weird about his homework. "I'll see you at supper, yeah?" And with that, he scampers back out of the greenhouse and runs toward the castle, giggling the whole while.

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