1995-03-25: We're All Mad Here


Antigone_icon.gif Neville_icon.gif Egbert_icon.gif Melissa_icon.gif

Scene Title We're All Mad Here
Synopsis A discussion of how classes are crazy and careers are probably even worse.
Location Hogwarts - Courtyard
Date March 25, 1995
Watch For Melissa's crazy moon language
Logger Egbert

"Well, that's the important thing," Antigone assures him with a sage nod, speaking of him being a good pet. "I've a cat myself. But I'm sure a toad is loads of fun too. I mean, I'd hate to see what'd happen if I tried to put Moth in the fountain. He's pretty easy-going, but I think even he'd take issue with that," she notes, grinning and grimacing at the same time. "Tell you what: if you can't get him out before curfew, I'll help, all right? I'm sure between the two of us, we can convince him."

Neville turns his chin up, looking amused at the thought of a cat in the fountain. "All right," Neville agrees to that. "I don't suppose you have any worms on you? That'd get him out in a minute flat." Quickly, a smile pulls the corners of his mouth. It may mean he's kidding.

Meanwhile, a little ways away, Egbert is holding his head in both hands as he talks with Melissa. "—taking my wand back, and that's when I thought… well, I don't even know if I want to think about it, you know? It's weird!"

Melissa nods. "It is," she answers. "But… I think you handled yourself all right, under the circumstances…"

Antigone wrinkles her nose a bit, though she doesn't cease grinning either. "Er, no. Sorry, afraid I don't make it a habit of carrying worms on me," she explains with a little laugh. "If I'd have known…" Though she really looks a little too girlie to carry them even if she knew they'd come in handy. She remembers her bracelet, still dangling around her wrist, and slips it off, tucking it away in a pocket, as she glances over her shoulder briefly at the sound of other voices. But not wanting to intrude, she turns back to the fountain again after a moment.

Neville leans down, losing Trevor for a moment. He breathes a sigh of relief and reels himself back up. "I don't make a habit of it either," the boy assures, getting down off his knees and sitting down properly. He rubs at the sore caps, where they had handled the brunt of his weight. Not nearly as thoughtful as Tig, Neville looks blatantly at the newcomers. "Hullo," he calls.

Egbert inclines his head to Melissa. "Thanks, I guess… if you can call fainting 'handling'. Listen, I wanted to—" Wait, who said that? Oh, there they are over there. "Hullo!" he calls back, waving to the older students.

Melissa is about to give Egbert some more reassuring words before Neville speaks. "Oh, hi," she says to him with a smile and wave.

"Well, we've that in common then," Antigone suggests with a little grin, as to them both not carrying worms around on a day-to-day basis. As he calls out to the younger students, she looks back over, offering a friendly smile, and returning the wave. She can't help but seem a little thoughtfully curious as to what's going on with them, and finally, she can't help but speak up with an, "All right?"

Neville sits back, pulling his legs up and crossing them on the bench. "We're just letting Trevor take a little swim. My toad, of course," he adds in an afterthought. The Gryffindor echoes Antigone's question with a single nod, eyes floating back and forth on the two.

"Oh, of course," Egbert echoes, peering over and trying to get a look at it. "We— Melissa's fine, I think. I got surprised by a ghost earlier. And Potions class was pretty weird again— that new teacher is really something, you know?"

Melissa nods. "Yeah, I'm all right," she says, thinking Egbert should probably be used to ghosts after all this time here. "It was a pretty interesting class… it really makes me wish I could try Polyjuice Potion sometime… it seems like it would be really fun! But it's really complicated…"

At the mention of Trevor, Antigone glances back over her shoulder into the fountain, checking on the toad as if he were her own; but her attention is soon back on the conversation again. "Well, this place does have plenty of ghosts," she notes with an understanding nod, before arching an eyebrow at the mention of Polyjuice. "I tried it once in Snape's class. Turned into my cousin. He's not very popular, turns out." Tig wrinkles her nose again at the memory. Not to mention becoming a boy.

"Ghosts still spook me quite a bit," Neville tells Egbert with a reassuring smile. "Popping out of every which way. Sometimes I think it's a little game for them." He follows the statement up with a bob of his head. "Eh, potions. It's a bit like Defense class, isn't it? Never a normal moment or professor. Still, I don't figure I'd touch polyjuice for a moment. It's nasty stuff from what I hear."

It's the idea that the ghost is related to you that's got Egbert spooked. He turns back and shrugs: "You're both right, of course. Lots of ways for it to go badly, but a lot of potions are like that."

Melissa laughs. "Well, maybe it is… I wonder if all Aurors are like that," she says. "Professor Moldavia is one, just like Professor Moody, and they're both all so… you know. I know one job I probably don't want to get into…"

Having no idea which ghost has Egbert so spooked, Antigone just rolls with the change in topic. "Yeah, I stink at Potions, so I suppose I'm just lucky I didn't turn myself into a puddle of goo or something," she notes with a wry laugh, shaking her head at her own hopelessness. "And yeah, I can't see being an Auror either. I don't think I could handle that much, er, excitement."

Neville laughs at the thought of him being an Auror. "I'd much rather wrangle dragons for the rest of my life. It'd be safer than wand dueling every day with the likes of dark magic." There is a small pause. "Althought I wouldn't much want to do that either."

Egbert nods. "It needs doing, though— I'm just glad there are some of us willing to take care of it. Even if they are all mad as hatters. And there's time for us to figure out what we do want, we just need to get started is all."

Melissa looks thoughtful. "You know… I'm not really sure what I want to do when I grow up. I might be a teacher like my mum… though it'd probably be somewhere like Hogwarts, not at a Muggle school."

"Well, some of us have more time than others," Antigone points out, though it's done so light-heartedly. "But I think I'll know it when I get there." At least that's a better option than worrying about it. "A teacher's a very noble profession too," she adds, nodding to Melissa. "And yeah, I'm glad there's someone to do the job of Auror. Mad as hatters, too right, but maybe you have to be, to keep facing that sort of thing." Neville gets a grin as well. "So maybe you rule them both out," she suggests in a teasing tone.

"Good idea," Neville shoots back to Antigone. "Niffler wrangler. That'd be much more up my alley. Or a rare plants shop-keep." His head tilts back, eyes up on the sky as he lapses into a day dream for a moment. "Maybe it's just this current crop of 'em. Angelina Johnson wants to be one, and she's not mad."

"Mmm, I don't know about that," Egbert replies. "Isn't she going out with one of the Weasley twins? Those two are mad. But a good mad, I suppose… I don't know what I want to do either, busy enough just keeping up so I can do something."

Melissa smiles at Egbert's comment. "Good point," she says. "Well, there's a little madness in all of us, isn't there?"

"I just said I was going to go into the family business when they asked me," Antigone replies, shrugging her shoulders. She still has no better answer than that. "Having a shop would be neat though," she goes on thoughtfully. To the matter of Aurors and the Weasley twins, her eyebrows lift a bit. "Yeah, I guess at least they keep it interesting around here."

Neville twitches at the reminder of Angelina. His face falls into a nose-wrinkled frown. "Yeah, I 'ppose," he mumbles, turning quickly to look back into the fountain. "I could set up in Hogsmeade, too. And get visited by students on weekends. Assuming the Death Eaters don't nix the place off the map."

Egbert's shoulders sag a little at the mention of Death Eaters - especially at the prospect of them taking out Hogsmeade, I mean c'mon, that's the legendary town of happy fun times! - but he soon perks up again, squinting at Melissa. "How are you mad?" he asks, sounding genuinely curious now.

Melissa looks a bit surprised at Egbert's question. "Me? Oh… I don't know. I'm good friends with Luna, that must count for something." She laughs a bit.

Antigone glances sidelong at Neville, her eyebrows going up a bit, and she cants her head towards him, as if to ask what's wrong without coming right out and asking it. Of course, since his attention is so quickly on the fountain, there's a good chance the sentiment is missed. "I'm sure those Aurors will see to making it nice and safe again, so you could have your shop there, surely," she goes on, perhaps a little extra cheerful to make up for sagging moods. Melissa's comment gets a grin.

Neville reaches to poke at the water, his toad now clambering out to the middle fountain feature for a break from swimming. "I wouldn't mind it," he says with a muted nod. "It'd be a nice break from… well, everything. In the mean time, I'll just /dream/ about honeydukes butterscotch rum cakes."

"Those do sound good," Egbert muses, absently rubbing the side of his stomach. "And I don't think that makes you mad," he adds, "Luna sounds like she knows a lot. Now your mum, she sounds mad— she teaches Muggle children? What's that like? There are some Muggles in my mother's family but I only hear stories about them."

Melissa nods. "Yeah, she does," she says. "Well, it's a lot different than Hogwarts… she teaches science. Biology, chemistry, things like that… it's pretty interesting actually."

"Mm. Yeah, careful or you'll make us all hungry!" Antigone notes with a little laugh, still maybe putting out that bit of extra effort to keep things cheerful. Her gaze goes back to Melissa as she explains about her mother, Tig's brow furrowing, as she tries to place the foreign terms. "Sounds a bit strange, yeah. But goes to show there's all sorts of things they can do without magic, I suppose." She shrugs her shoulders lightly.

Neville catches his tongue between his teeth. "An' butterbeer an' fresh cobbed corn with cinnamon margarine with salt on it from the pub, an' those chocolate cream brooms from Madame Puddifoots…" Neville pats his stomach and gives Antigone a sly, happy little look. "I /really/ hope we get another Hogsmeade visit before the term year is up." He listens to the talk of muggle schools quietly and eagerly.

Egbert is torn. On the one hand, there's Neville and his dessert menu - on the other, there's Melissa and her Muggle stories - and they're both new to him. "What's biology?" he asks, "Is it something like herbology?"

Melissa grins. "Well, kind of… it's sort of the study of various forms of life, from cells and amoebas and stuff all the way up to the human body," she says. "So yeah, that includes plants, though obviously not the same ones we study in Herbology…"

"Oh, stop, you're making my stomach growl!" Antigone chides Neville, though she's laughing as she does so, and really doesn't seem at all put out. "Yeah, I hope so too. Though it won't do my waistline any good, now that you've gone and put those ideas into it." Still, grinning, she shakes her head, her gaze falling back on the first year as she explains science. "Sounds hard," she notes, not exactly a scholar.

Neville glances back at herbology, and uses the moment to gnab Trevor from his perch. The sleeves of his robes drag in the water and he comes up, toad in hand and a slight annoyed look. "I'd might be good at it. I love herbology."

Melissa smiles. "Maybe," she says. "I might ask her for some of her extra textbooks for you to look through. It's good to know things like that, even though it doesn't all apply to us," she says, pushing up her glasses.

Egbert isn't quite fascinated the way Ravenclaws tend to be about new subjects, but he's clearly interested, all right. "Could be fun. Could be tough, too, but at least we're not getting tested on it. Or having chemistry sets suddenly thrown at us, just to keep us on our toes…"

Antigone glances over her shoulder as Neville suddenly goes for the toad. "Yeah, Herbology isn't too bad. At least it's not Potions," Tig notes, philosophically. But that seems to be about the extent of her views on the subject, aside from a grinning, "I dunno, I'd probably do better at dodging things being thrown at me than … science."

"Oh?" Neville wants to know, attempting to keep the wriggling toad from leaping out of his grip. "A muggle book! I'd really like that!" He brims with a happy inhale at the very thought. "I've heard about science before. Some of my best mates are muggleborn so I know a little bit. Not much, though."

Egbert chuckles under his breath at the sight of the toad attempting to escape once again. "Nothing's like Potions any more. I don't even think Potions is like Potions."

Melissa smiles. "All right then, I'll write home and ask for some books," she says. "She'll appreciate it, ever since she heard about Hogwarts she always complained that we don't learn much besides magic here…"

Antigone gives a thoughtful look to Egbert for his comment, smiling somewhat wryly as she shrugs to concede that point. It's hard not to watch Neville's struggling toad though, to see if Trevor will succeed in his bid for freedom. "It would be neat to see how Muggles do it," she goes on, finally tearing her gaze away from the pet again. Though she sounds a bit wary that she might end up being made to learn things.

"A potions unlike potions would be /my/ kind of potions," Neville says. "But since I'm still a bit panicky in that class, I'll mark it up as the same just yet." He finally goes about shoving Trevor into his coat pocket. The now lump in Nev's robes gives out a rather 'sigh' like croak. "What else do you need to know besides magic?" he wonders.

Melissa thinks. "Well… Hogwarts doesn't have a business class, or anything else about managing money…" she says. "And Arithmancy is as close as we get to a math class."

Antigone's expression actually falters a bit at something Melissa says. "Yeah, those'd be useful. Say, your mum got any books on that sort of thing? Business and money, I mean." Her eyebrows lift just a little and she seems perhaps a touch hopeful; until she remembers something. "Oh blast. Speaking of Arithmancy, I've an assignment to finish for tomorrow." With a sigh, she heaves to her feet.

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