|Scene Title||Someone Chose Cake|
|Synopsis||Melissa stumbles upon a message to Sio. Snape interrupts and Siobhan has her first Occlumency lesson.|
|Location||Entrance Hall and Snape's Office|
|Date||December 03, 1994|
|Watch For||Junior and Cake.|
|Logger||The BAD WOLF herself|
Stepping out from the Waiting Room, Siobhan tugs her robes to straighten them and ambles across towards the Hall - and food! There's a satisfied sort of smile on her face, and for the first time today her expression is smooth and free from worry. Suddenly, a silvery-white rabbit - larger than normal - hops in and leaps happily around her feet. "H'lo Junior," Sio greets softly, bending down to scoop the slightly see-through critter into her arms. "What's the news from Jack then?"
Melissa trots in from the Great Hall, having finished her meal, and looks surprised to see Siobhan standing outside. "Hi," she says in a friendly manner, "what's going on?" She looks curiously at Siobhan but doesn't seem to notice the rabbit at the moment.
Looking up in surprise at Melissa' sudden appearance, Siobhan blinks several times. "Um…sorry?" There's no recognition in the older Slytherin's brown eyes. After all, it's hard to keep track of all the younger years. In the meantime, the bunny, wriggling his nose, starts to speak in a voice Siobhan knows well - that of her brother, Jack. It fills the room, even though it sounds like he's tryin' to be quiet. "Rosie. Went to visit him, and several hundred dementors showed up. So, brought 'im to my place for a bit. Wanted by her for questioning for keeping him alive." At this point, the bunny gives an undignified snort. "Pretty sure she's the one who did it. I'll probably go do a couple of those jobs out of country for a few days. I'll be back before your weekend, though. Love you." Then, after the message is delivered, Junior fades into mist, Jack's voice adding as an afterthought. "Thanks for those joy bites. They really helped."
Melissa blinks as the rabbit speaks. "…Several hundred dementors?" she asks slowly. "…I'm sorry, I couldn't help overhearing…" she quickly adds. "I won't ask any more…" Even so, she still stares a bit. Phrasing like that made her think of the article in the Prophet…
Siobhan's gaze is sharp as Melissa makes herself known again. "Damn right you won't ask any more. Firsties who stick their nose in other people's business don't tend to live very long," she snaps. That glare is held for a few moments more - just to make sure the point is drive home - and then she slumps, running a hand down her face and muttering something about turning into her Head of House far too early. "Sorry, kid. What was your name again?"
Melissa is startled by Siobhan's threat. "Oh… Melissa," she says with a somewhat quivering tone. "Melissa Burch," she repeats. "Didn't I see you recently? When Mrs. Weasley stopped by?"
"Oh, were you there?" Siobhan's memory must have holes in it for sure. "I'm sorry, I must not have been payin' much attention." A light flush colors her cheeks. "Been a bit distracted lately, me." A light seems to go on in her head at that; duh, the girl had walked up to her for something right? "Did you need somethin', luv?"
Melissa shakes her head. "Oh… no, I just saw you standing here…" she says. "I was just heading back to the tower really." She turns around and starts towards the stairs, then stops and turns around again to give Siobhan a quick wave. "Bye," she adds before starting off again.
Snape swoops down the grand staircase, cloak flapping out behind him like the wings of some great bat. Pale fists clenched at his sides, he looks to be in far from the best of moods as he stalks across the Entrance Hall to Siobhan.
"Noble. Come with me."
Startled by the sudden appearance of a seemingly irate Snape, Siobhan blinks up at him several times before offering a sharp nod. "Yes, Professor." An apologetic expression on her face, she turns to wave to the already departing Melissa before jogging to catch up with her billowing Head of House. She doesn't question. Not yet; not in public.
Snape leads the way down into the dungeons, through the twisting corridors to the heavy, iron-banded door of his office - all without a word.
Stepping inside before Siobhan, the door slams once she is inside and the Potions Master immediately turns on his heels to question her. Perhaps not looking quite as brutal and displeased as he did moments before in the Entrance Hall.
"Have you received your clue yet?"
If Siobhan is amused by the fuss and fanfare accompanying her arrival, she wisely doesn't show it. If she's put off-balance by the change in his demeanor, she also hides it well; one session of surprise was all it took to brace Sio for further surprises. "I have, yes."
"Good, I'd like to discuss it."
Snape moves calmly as though he's about to take his seat, moving his hands to draw out his cloak to avoid sitting on it. As he does, however, his wand suddenly comes to his hand from some concealed pocket and he lifts it swiftly - pointing it directly at the young woman.
"Fair enou—shit." As that wand is lifted, she drops into a defensive crouch, wrist slapped against her thigh to drop her own wand into her hand. Despite knowing logically it'll do little good, she casts a shield charm, her strong "Protego!" leaving a shimmery, translucent bubble of protection around her body. Her mind is mostly unguarded; he caught her by surprise.
Despite his obvious presence in her mind, Snape does not remain there. In fact, he almost immediately retreats and leaves her with her thoughts unwatched and untouched. Folding the wand away once again, this time he does sit down- steeping his fingers before him.
Irritated, but not so foolish as to shout at her best possible resource for fighting this, Siobhan moves to sit in her usual chair. One leg is tucked beneath her and she rests her chin on one hand. Her tiny wand is not put away - yet. She doesn't say anything, simply arches that brow and waits for him to continue.
"There is no trick to it," Snape continues, as though nobody's privacy was invaded just moments ago, "You must be able to compartmentalize your thoughts and emotions … your way of thinking."
Siobhan can't restrain her snort at that first statement - there's a trick to everything she's seen so far in life - but she quickly schools her expression to a more neutral one. "Like…like organizin' your thoughts?"
"More than that," Snape insists, irritated perhaps by the fact that she does not immediately grasp the concept in it's entirety, "Sort them away. Thoughts that you do not wish to concern you should be locked away … out of mind. Feelings you do not want? The same."
Siobhan - being the intensely passionate and vivacious creature that she is - blinks over at Snape as if he'd just said the secret to Occlumency was running about the castle naked at sunrise. "Um…" She doesn't like failure. Especially not with Snape. This doesn't sit well with her at all. "Doesn't that defeat the purpose of bein' human?" This isn't coming out the way she wants it to at all. "Is that the only way?"
"There is a reason that Occlumency is an obscure and rarely-practiced branch of magic," Snape replies, looking at her sternly, "You must learn to shield your thoughts. If you believe you can do it, I will teach you - if not, then there are better uses for both of our time."
"I've not met a spell yet I couldn't work." Which is true; Siobhan in the practical parts of magic is something to see. Steeling herself, she lifts her chin and forces her gaze to meet that of her professor's - without flinching. "I can learn it." Her grip on the willow in her hand shifts just a little. "Is what I'm aimin' for more of…a wall to keep you out or lots of hideaways so when you push through my mind you can't find anythin'?" Theoretical genius she is not; her descriptions are simple, rudimentary and may indeed seem plebian - especially to the more educated - but if it's not broke…
"The latter," Snape explains, "Your mind has be a maze - so much so that those who enter it see nothing you do not wish for them to see. If you master this art, you will be able to fabricate thoughts and hide others as though they never occurred to you."
"A maze…" The thought appeals to Sio; very much. She appears to consider something for a moment. A maze she can do… There! "Try it again."
Snape arches a brow. He does not, apparently, believe that Siobhan is capable of it but he did agree to teach her. He lifts his wand, casting the spell once again … "Legilimens."
She's ready this time. Well, readier. When his mind presses in on hers, Siobhan doesn't try to fight it, merely pushing forward lists of winter herbs she needs to harvest over the Christmas holidays. Should he press further, there will be an image of Hermione staring heartbroken at a shredded homework assignment. Two innocuous and pointless memories. What on earth is she doing?
"Better," Snape admits, tucking his wand away once again, "But you still need to practice … you need to be able to hide all your memories if need be. And to create new ones."
"I get the idea of using different memories - and even fake ones - to distract and steer away and confuse." Diversionary tactics! "But what do I use if I hide all of them away?" Siobhan's confusion is written plainly on her face, her nose wrinkled up as she tries to puzzle out the methods needed.
"Compartmentalize," Snape repeats, standing up to move towards the door once again, "And practice. If you are interested in learning then you will find a way to do it. Until then." He opens the door.
"I can do that." Or, if she can't, she'll never let on that she can't. Still, it seems like lessons are over for the time being. Pushing herself to her feet, Sio stretches and then ambles towards the door. "Oh, right!" Snapping her fingers, the young blonde seems to recall something. "One of your students asked me to deliver this to you, sir." Flicking her wand, she snaps her wrist and Can't Stop grinning. "Accio Cake!" Flying through the doorway after a moment of waiting is, in fact, a cake. It is circular and two-layered, about as big around as a small pillow (the kind a Muggle might get for a favored pet) and covered in dark green icing. Around the top edge of the cake are green bulbuous protrusions of green icing framing words written in silvery icing that state:
Best Potions Master
The edge of the cake (also in the same silvery icing) has the word 'UNIVERSE' emblazoned in large block letters. The interior of the cake is marbled, again with green and silver, the green portion tasting of chocolate and the silver portion tasting of yellow cake.
Setting it on his desk, she can't resist a smirk; just a little teeny tiny one.
Snape simply quirks an eyebrow at the cake. All this going out of his way to try and teach her Occlumency and she repays him with a cake? He'll need to find just which students are involved and let them know that there isn't a sweet and friendly man underneath all the layers of mean. There is just someone even meaner.
"That will be all."
Siobhan herself tried to disillusion this particular student - with some progress - but imagines that Snape may have better luck than she. "I'd start with the Hufflepuffs, sir." Just a friendly suggestion; she's not as naive as she looks…sometimes. "Have a good evenin', professor." And with that she is gone.