1995-04-07: Tea and Curses


Moody_icon.gif Neville_icon.gif

Scene Title Tea and Curses
Synopsis Neville comes to a requested Teacher/Student conference.
Location Hogwarts: Moody's Office
Date April 7, 1995
Watch For Talks of Squibs.
Logger Neville

It is just after dinner and so the curfew hasn't been set into affect. As such it is a fine time for a cup of tea. Which two cups already set steaming on the great oak desk of Professor Moody. The rest of the room is dark and seems to show his bent on wariness and general paranoia quite well. The great wardrobe remains in one corner, while a multi layered trunk sits close by that. A sneakscope ticks away on the professor's desk as directly behind Moody's chair, a great foe glass is hung with care. All and all the room is kept dark. Only a few candles burning, so its easy to tell the Professor is not toiling away, but relaxing somewhat.

Moody himself is seated in that tall backed, leather chair. One hand wrapped around a dull silver flask which is being used currently to top off one of the tea cups. The blue eye remains focused on the door, as if the professor is waiting on someone to enter. And fingers cork the flask.

Neville Longbottom is still dressed neatly in his school robes. Well, maybe not neat. The smell and the residue of dirt still clings about the bottom of the hanging black uniform robes, proof of a long evening in the green houses. Neville readies himself, clutching to his bookbag and staring at the door. Another gulp much like when he was first asked to come. "I'm not in trouble," Neville reminds himself, repeating this a few more times before finally lifting a balled fist to knock nervously at the door.

At the right knock or perhaps the Professor is just cruel, the door opens with a bang. And so he turns up his head watching Longbottom stand there. A look back down as fingers move to press the cup closer towards where the student is going to sti as the chair moves with a flick of his brown eye. Drawn out right there, even as Moody's thick scotch brogue comes out in the usual graveyard gravel. More or less, growling rather than talking. "Come on in Longbottom." quiet for a moment "How are your parents?"

It isn't so much a stand as a cower. Neville is already half a step back, eyes wide and mouth tightened back in a gasp of air. It takes a moment, but the boy finally slinks forward, exhaling and moving for the chair. He lowers himself into it, feeling a bit small in the eccentric room. "My—" this causes Neville to still, looking at Moody with wide, confused eyes. "My parents," he stammers. "They're in St. Mungo's, Professor."

And those eyes flick back towards the young boy, before he is taking a sip of his tea, and well who knows what else he has poured in his own cup. Either way the face Moody makes one might seem to say that the drink is stronger than just-tea. A slight pause "I know where they are, Longbottom.." Moody intones, "I am just asking how they are, if you've seen them." Something he won't overtly push, but if they are being looked for then all is well. "How're you doing in classes?"

"I have seen them," Neville says, shooing his attention away towards something far less interesting than the odd, blue and brown gaze. "My Gran takes me every other Sunday during holidays and summer. They…" his voices trails off and it seems to be a physical battle for the boy to force himself to look back at his Professor. "They haven't changed much. Since I was younger. M'mum's hair is grey, now. I think it used to be brown." A labored breath before Neville can continue. "I'm doing all right. Potions is, well, potions. But charms and herbology is brilliant." He doesn't appear to be willing to mention Divination to an old Ministry Auror.

Moody nods back towards the lad as he takes another drink of his tea, before nodding towards Neville for the cup in front of the lad. After all this was to have a cuppa tea. "I was going to show the cruciatus curse in the next class we have Longbottom, and I wanted you to know-given how that can be rather disturbing to see-even for you." A sip of tea again "If you don't come to that class I won't dock you points or give you detention-though I think you know I would want you there regardless." a lick of his lips. "Can I ask you something Longbottom?"

Neville thinks hard about this, his eyes falling on the cup. He reaches forward, unable to hide the shake to his fingers. Still, he manages to pull it back with only one small drop dribbling over the edge of the teacup. "Yessir," he says stiffly in a very mumbled tone. His brown, deep eyes peek up, hesitantly. Only a small, audible grunt is given, but it's in a way to let Moody know to continue.

"I am glad t' see you've joined my extra class, but boyo, I am confused." A pause as Moody begins to outline what he is going to say, but knowing Moody this little trail could lead about anywhere. No instead the gnarled hand of the Auror is coming up to wipe his mouth before he is looking right back at Longbottom. "But, I have yet t' see what y' don't see in yourself. You're a bright young lad an come from good parents…" A shake of his head "I don't see why y' hide boyo."

Neville takes a small sip, nose flaring at the steam coming off the tea. Another sip. He pulls the rim of the cup from his lips, attemptng to work out Moody's words. He's nervous and having a hard time focusing. "M'almost a squib, Sir. Just by a hair did I even got accepted here t'Hogwarts." Neville slwoly leans back. "It's just hard, y'see… Nothin' comes naturally. Save herbology, maybe."

"Has anyone called you that? Because boyo-you're no squib not even a hair close." Moody intones as he stands, taking time to lean over his desk and look down at Neville, really stare there. "You got a gift for herbology, that is all well and good. However that doesn't make you a hair away from a squib." quiet for a second "Did you or did you not confundo Bellatrix Lestrange?"

Neville holds his tongue against the many, usually Slytherin, squib taunts. He screws up his nose at the name of that particular death eater. "Yes, Sir. I did, Sir. But… I don't figure that was really me. I couldn't control myself. Everyone was running away and," he pauses here, looking down past his tea at his shoes. "My feet wouldn't listen. They marched right at her. My wand raised— I swear I couldn't have stopped myself if I had tried."

And there Moody stares for a bit "There's a reason you're in Gryffindor son." And he is leaning back into that chair "No almost Squib could have pulled that off, even if they suspected bein' imperiused to do it. Have faith Longbottom. You're a good wizard, and only a good wizard could have pulled that off." And with that he is looking back to his own tea. "But that is all I wanted to say boy. Find your voice, an t' warn ya about the class to come." A slight nod "Are we good?"

Neville takes a few more, remarkably heartened, drinks of his tea. The young fourth year sits up and even with the threat of the curse that nearly ruined his life for good, Neville Longbottom smiles. And it's no weak half smile. "Find my voice. Yes, Professor. We're good. I think I can handle it."

Moody nods as a grin, if that cruel twist of lips can be called so, shows on the professor's face "Good, now head on out Longbottom. I have tests t' grade an the like. Just know.." And Moody watches Neville's face for a moment "You ever need anything, my door is open."

Neville drains his tea. He sets it down, standing and gripping his bookbag to make sure it's secured. "Thank you, Professor. I'll keep it in mind. G'night." With a short nod of his head he turns and ducks out of the door.

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