Meadow didn't say much at all in return when Travis couldn't promise what she requested - she understood, even if it greatly pained her to do so. It wasn't something she wanted to see as a possibility. Meadow herself had had brushes with death one too many times when she was a little girl, and couldn't wish that upon anyone. The thought of having a close friend willingly face such a thing made her quite uneasy to say the least, when she just did her best to avoid such situations like the coward she had become as a result. "Thank you." It was all she could say to the compromise. It was fair. Besides, if he did come back in more than just one piece, she could just heal him back together, right? That would be her job. And that was why she should become a Healer. She would be there for him when needed. She'd study her ass off to become someone he could depend on. For as much of a coward that she was indeed, that gave her a renewed sense of self worth and affirmation. It was something that she needed to do. It was no longer a matter of if she should. The moment he mocked the situation, however, a wry smile spread upon her lips. She rolled her eyes and then shook her head, but instead of scolding him on his antics, she wound up letting out a mild chuckle. "Shut up and come here, pervert." She then pulled the man close into a hug. Merlin knew how many more opportunities she'd actually have to do so.
As Meadow kept on inspecting the little container, the stirring not causing a reaction, she found herself exhaling deeply in frustration as both her friends challenged her on what she deemed a very simple, reasonable request. It didn't help her nerves much at all, and made her grip the flask tighter. The tension in the room was palpable and her jaw clenched. It was just a little potion and they'd be on their way, as she had compromised to. Couldn't they just agree to it and move on? "I know what I'm doing." She managed to utter out in a mildly aggravated tone, gaze glued to the liquid in the bottle. Why did everyone have to get so defensive against her every single time? It wasn't like she was holding people at gunpoint. Yet, the repeated pushing and questioning soon became quite the burden to bear, and she set the flask down on the surface near her with a light clicking sound. Closing her eyes, she didn't respond to either one of them. 'Breathe.' She knew that she usually veered towards self-destruction when angry, and so all she could do was pause. She didn't even mind how odd it would seem for her to lean on that desk and just breathe. She needed to clear her head, even if for just a second.
"I suppose that's a good way of describing him." Meadow found herself commenting, but it was mostly to herself than as a response to Remi proper. She would've also used the words 'perverse', 'inappropriate' and 'crude', but perhaps it was about time she focused on the good rather than being so strict about her best friend's actions. They were in their teenage years, right? She should let him do what he wanted. At that point she was just projecting her parents' behavior onto others, which wasn't healthy in the least. "Oh, no... That's not really my thing." The beach. It was the Summer and it was a perfectly good excuse, but that little voice in the back of her mind was making itself heard again. For once, she decided to ignore it. "Though I hope you have fun. I take it you two are travelling to Melbourne for this?" There wasn't much in the way of 'beaches' in Narrie, after all, but she couldn't help but wonder why they wouldn't have a day at the lakes instead. Did they really want to build sandcastles that badly?
Travis' explanation served to somewhat soothe Meadow's nerves. To help others out and progress in life was his reasoning. It was certainly something she could get behind - she wanted him to go as far as he could (even if she thought he should stop skipping classes), and helping fellow people in need was certainly a noble act. She didn't exactly appreciate the fact he'd be putting his neck on the line that much, but ultimately it was his choice - one for a good cause. Besides, who was she to talk him out of it, when Meadow herself was distraught at being repeatedly talked out of pursuing Health & Healing studies? A moment of silence followed, eventually broken by a sigh of relief. She closed her eyes temporarily to regain her composure. She wasn't that afraid of the confrontation anymore, now that it had been resolved; her knees were still shaking though, and it was quite the frustrating thing. She decided to focus on anything but that weak feeling and took a step closer to the fellow teenager, moving a hand to his shoulder and trying her best to give him a proper smile. "Just make sure you make it back in one piece, okay? And write." She ultimately conceded. In return, she'd do her best not to leave him behind again throughout the year - or their whole lives, for that matter.
Meadow Richards earned a Trophy Prolific Poster Level Three
Meadow couldn't help but wince as the bag collided with her friend's face. That had not been her intention at all - did Amber even know how to measure the strength of her spells, or had it been a simple miscalculation due to the new means of execution? No matter. The Flinders sighed and shook her head as Amber didn't seem to move much at all after impact, even if she could see the girl was mostly fine; at least she didn't throw her back again. "Come on, get up." She left her chair temporarily to kneel next to the Spencer and help her get up. Amber took the help with an arm, using her other hand to hold the bag to its newfound resting surface as if trying to keep her own face from falling off. Once back up on their feet, Meadow waved the teacher off. "We're good, I'll fix it. I apologize for the disturbance." Setting the chair back upright, she led the fellow student back to it before sitting down herself. "Let's see the damage, alright?" Amber placed the bag down on her desk as the little boxes started moving about on their own, revealing a nose crooked to the side along with a few droplets of blood descending from it - it didn't take much of an examination for Meadow to conclude it was broken. She didn't seem much surprised or revolted at the sight, being a bit too used to it (especially with the patient in question). However, before the older girl could even apply a proper treatment, Amber was already barking away at the people that engaged her, seemingly not flinching that much with the damages she caused to herself. "Yeah? Why would I listen? This thing's my baby." She patted the bag with pride while glancing at Lauren, seemingly unaware of the blood spot now present in its Back to the Future sticker. As she replied, Meadow moved to retrieve her wand despite the theme of the class, aiming it at Amber's nose. "Stay still." She spoke, but before she could even begin to produce a proper healing spell, the Spencer was already exchanging words with someone else. "They're more interesting than most people I know!" She joked back to Nox, turning her head to look at them as she did so. It earned her a harsh pull of her chin so she would face forward again. "I said stay still, you idiot." Meadow scolded before performing the appropriate healing spell. Just like that, the deviation in her nose repaired itself, cartilage unbroken, nosebleed halted. It was like it never had happened in the first place. The Flinders sighed in mild frustration at her friend's behavior before placing her wand back in its carrying holster. 'This is going to be a long class...'
Meadow Richards earned a Medal Class Champion Level One
Nervousness welled up in the pit of Meadow's stomach as she geared herself to meeting her (much) older sister for the first time in a few years. Close as they were, their parents disapproved of their connection; exchanges were mostly limited to literal written mail. But that day was different. The Flinders finally had enough courage to step out of her safety bubble and request a meeting, after being prompted by Isolda. The longer she had to wait, the worst she felt, but that was on her for reaching the meeting place a tad too early. As she paced back and forth along the dirt path in front of Tallygarunga as means to distract herself, she couldn't help but wonder: would Isolda even recognize her? For what felt like a lifetime, Meadow had looked like no more than just a kid. Only late in the year prior had puberty hit her like a truck, and Meadow looked much different than the last time they met. It didn't help that the younger of the two wasn't particularly fond of photography and refused to put any pictures of herself on QuillBook whatsoever. As she walked back and forth, she couldn't keep her eyes from scanning every nook and cranny of her surroundings, as if expecting her parents or their minions to jump out and reveal her transgression. 'Calm down, girl, you'll get Apparated out of here in no time...'
Once Travis was done, Meadow wanted to say many things. She wanted to tell him it wasn't so easy, because her parents were important figures in the Ministry themselves; she wanted to say the system was corrupt enough that they'd pay their way out of trouble, which she had witnessed before; she wanted to say he had a good idea with monetizing her skills; she wanted to say she was glad he agreed to work with her. But something, unfortunately, stuck out. "...What do you mean, you won't be around after that?" Her brows furrowed as she analyzed the Bourke. Had something happened that she hadn't notice? Was something going to happen? She could feel her stomach flip as a number of bad scenarios emerged in her head. "What are you talking about?" It was a strange realization. One that she already knew of, but needed to be reminded more directly of all the same - the realization that, no matter how afraid she was of her parents and how neurotic they could be, she was afraid of losing her best friend that much more.
Meadow let go of Travis the moment she deemed him sufficiently away from the door, proceeding to close it afterwards. She didn't like how Travis was looking, not one bit. It didn't make it better that she couldn't exactly treat his condition with her current skill set and lack of funds - but she could treat the symptoms. And that was something she was determined to do. The tease wasn't verbally even replied to. All she did was raise an eyebrow at him. 'Really? Really.' "We're not going because I don't want to leave tomorrow with my last memory of my best friend being him sick in the middle of the ball." She motioned to his face, it showing mild telltale signs that he wasn't in tip top shape despite the excellent getup he had fixed for himself. Perhaps it wouldn't be too visible to others, but Meadow herself had a trained eye for such things; at least she managed to put it in a way that wouldn't spill the beans on her friend's condition. "Do me at least a favor." She asked Travis. "Just sit or lie down somewhere while I get something for you to drink. If you're feeling better after letting it work, we're going." A fair compromise, she thought. She didn't actually wait for a response prior to going through her things, looking for a case she had kept safely in the joint closet. She carried it to her desk and opened it. Within it there were several flasks of a golden liquid, with gentle pale pink swirls forming over its surface. She retrieved one of them and inspected it, lightly shaking the container as if checking for a reaction. "You two can always catch up while this does what it's meant to do..."
Meadow Richards earned a Medal School Superstar Level One
Ah, good. Meadow had managed to clarify her stance somehow, and could clear her mind of the image of seeing Travis as anything more than a friend. It made her skin crawl. She wasn't entirely sure why she got such a visceral reaction at the idea to begin with, as he was someone whom she actually valued; perhaps some things were just not meant to be? No point in dwelling on it, she thought. She found herself immediately occupied with the fact that there had been a mild misunderstanding on her end apparently, or so Remi's statement indicated. "Oh, I see." But, did that mean she wanted to know what those 'tingly feelings' meant? Or she wanted to know how to act on them? Meadow was somewhat more perplexed than before. Hoping for the former, she spoke. "It just means you're attracted, I assume." If it was anything like the crushes Meadow caught every now and then, it could get a bit overwhelming at times. "It's not really a bad thing, it's just that you like him. What comes to mind when you think about him?" She tried, perhaps having Remi voice it would help understand things better.
The Flinders sighed out and shook her head as Travis took what she had said and given it a meaning she had not intended. It seemed she had put her foot in her mouth, which only served to increase her frustration, but she let him say his piece in full. She wanted to take that time to calm down just enough that she'd start sniffling, yet not enough that she'd want to race out the door again. It was proving to be quite the difficult task. Her hand returned to her bicep on reflex, it being the best means of holding herself back for better or worse at that moment. The tone and glare cut deep into her, but she realized her own weren't the warmest she'd ever addressed him with. Her jaw clenched, and it was unclear if the red in her eyes were from the still burning rage, sadness, or pain; perhaps a bit of all three. And what was worse is that, misunderstanding or not, she couldn't blame him one bit for what he was feeling and lashing out for. It was entirely justified. All she could do was stand there and take it all without snapping again. 'Come on, you idiot, don't let it get the better of you like it always does... For once in your god damn life.' "You're wrong. You're very, very wrong." She did state as he defied her. "Me not hanging out was me trying, since the very beginning." She took a deep breath before clearing that up. "I understand what you mean, but in my point of view, the longer I go on without raising trouble, the more likely I am of getting out of their grasp when I turn eighteen. I'm not emancipated, I can't just leave. If they were to take me away right now, I'd lose that shot. I'd be under their thumb and would have to follow whatever it is they want. Hell, it's a miracle I have this freedom at all with what happened back then." It occurred to her that Travis would have no idea what she was referring to, but she continued regardless. "To me, there is no deadline to us. I am planning to stay in touch when you're gone. Do you know what happens when you turn 17? You can apply for an Apparition License! That's why I don't go with you to any bloody place just yet, for the most part. And QuillBook, as well as letters, are still very much a thing last time I checked." It was then she realized anger was being injected into her voice again, and she took a very literal step back as means to calm down. 'Breathe in. Breathe out.' She did have to find an owl first, at least. Knowing her parents, they probably placed some sort of curse pertaining any letter or item she might send through a normal courier. "The plan's fatal flaw is that I can't find a reliable way to ensure income. I can't work customer service because of them, they don't want me getting an occupation and so I can't be out in the open. I can't do anything stressing on the body either because mine is way too damn fragile." She cursed with the frustration, a rarity. "Stop painting a picture that I haven't been trying, because that's crap. What's happening is I've been trying on my own. I didn't come to you because I'm at the end of my rope, I came to you because I don't want you hurting. I want to work with you now. So, please..." She was fairly positive she was going to have a breakdown by the time the day was over, as her health was never meant to be taken on such an emotional rollercoaster.
A thud echoed through the classroom as Amber's bag was pushed forth, and down to the ground, by magic. It was soft enough that few people would come to hear it to begin with, but loud enough that the ones in the immediate area were drawn to its origins - namely the owner of the bag, as well as Meadow. Neither seemed to notice Lauren sitting down near them, much less the fact that she was the culprit. "Shoot." Amber cursed as her beautiful bag was out of reach. Letting herself sink in her chair, she stretched out her legs and lightly flailed them in the direction of the fallen backpack, trying to have at least one foot hit it and push it closer. Meadow watched this spectacle with skepticism. "What the hell are you doing?" She chided the Spencer, leaning over her desk to see the girl's sneakers lightly tap at the bag with little to no success in their endeavor. "What does it look like?" Her eyes squinted as she held onto the desk for balance, stretching as far out as she possibly could - momentarily, anyway. Not too long after, she was pulled back up by the collar of her shirt by the Flinders student who wasn't all to pleased with what she was doing. "It looks like you're being an idiot. You're in the Wandless Magic class, so actually use your brain cells for a change." Meadow stood just enough so that the bag was within view of her hand -- as well as her arm. "Wingardium Leviosa." A small wave of her arm and an incantation later, the backpack rose from the floor and came up to levitate at the same level as Amber's head. Meadow sat back down, although she still held her arm up to keep the bag in place. "Forget the Unlocking Charm, let's start with Accio. You've always been the first try kind of person anyway..." Amber's eyes squinted as she glanced at the levitating bag, and she held out a hand. "Alright..." A deep breath later, she let instinct operate in her stead. "Accio bag!" Meadow had been correct - the Spencer was a natural and got the backpack to respond to the incantation very well. Perhaps a bit too well. The bag hurtled in Amber's direction immediately, at such speed that her hand, ready to catch it, completely missed its reflex grab. Instead, the bag collided with Amber's face. She lost her balance and a loud crash echoed throughout the classroom as the chair tipped over under her weight and the girl fell on her back, the backpack serving as a nice visual replacement for her face. "...I'm okay..." Came the muffled groan, although she was fairly certain her nose was broken.
As Meadow's hand was let go of, she too folded her arms under her chest as a low key form of holding herself in place, trying to prevent herself from dashing out of the room. She had to see this conversation through, for both their sakes. But as soon as she made the revelation that she'd been struggling to make for so long - one that made her knees weak from just realizing she voiced it - she got a response that was far removed from what she was hoping for. It incensed her. "At least one of us is trying to do something about it instead of just quitting the issue the moment they hear about it." She snapped back. Still very much affected by the earlier panic, she brought a hand up to her eyes to clear out the accumulated water. Said eyes, however, held more ire than anything at that point. Even if her actions were terribly misguided, she was at least trying to find a way. It made her feel like she was ultimately negligible in Travis' eyes, or even replaceable. She cared no longer for whatever he was keeping from her. Her jaw clenched as she stared the boy down in quite the one-sided manner. "You're my best friend, you idiot. I love you, and I'm not just going to give up on that. I've been doing their bidding to at least survive until school's over, and I've been trying to make a backup plan. But if you're gonna give me that, what motivation are you giving me to go through with it?" Perhaps chastising him was the worst possible thing she could do at that point, but the sudden anger burst in her heart was clouding her judgement. "I was really hoping you wouldn't be too affected by what I was doing, but it did affect you. And that's why I'm here. To sort things out and help you, not put a deadline on our friendship. If I saw things like that, you think I'd be trying this hard to stay out of trouble?" Another sniffle. She hated how emotional she was getting, always preferring to tackle things with a clear head instead. Her heart rate was ensuring that wouldn't be an easy thing to accomplish. "And it really hurts that you'd assume the worst from me. Even with all the secrets, I thought you knew me better than that."
Issy, Thank you for getting back to me so quickly, although I'm a bit saddened over you being so short when it comes to what's going on with you. To be frank, with this distance, it's hard to hear from you at all and I feel a bit of a disconnect that shouldn't be there. I don't want this exchange to just be me dumping all my problems on you either. It's certainly relieving and I'll continue doing so, but it's not the only thing that should happen here. Or maybe this is just my overly convoluted way to say I miss you dearly and I don't know what to do about it. And can I say I'm envious of whoever your house mate is? Who cares if he's handsome, I just want to be the one there instead. Now segueing into my own side of things... They have cracked down on me immensely. I'm presently living under the threat of being pulled from Tallygarunga should I engage with anyone they don't approve of, or you, in any way. They just say they'll homeschool me if I 'sully their name'. Quite ironic for a couple that doesn't want to fork over the money to enroll their daughter in Penrose, don't you think? That's not the only thing they're doing, though. Something that comes to mind is the fact they're ensuring I prepare myself for a job in the Ministry, rather than have me follow in your footsteps. Something about 'they learned from their mistake the first time', they said. I'm taking Health & Healing in school, sure, but they've made me take on certain subjects I hate (i.e. Arithmancy) to ensure I'm prepared for a job in the Ministry instead straight out of school. It's stifling. It really is. I think I found the right motivation to push through them and go on my own path. My friends. I don't want to discard them over something that's my choice to make and not our parents'. At the same time, whenever I think of facing them about it, I just lock up in fear of being pulled from Tally sooner rather than later. Not to mention I can't do much to begin with for the next two years anyway. I need to finish school first. Been thinking about getting some sort of under the table job to have some savings for when I'm inevitably disowned, but at the same time it's quite difficult to find something that isn't related to customer service and doesn't require experience for people in my age bracket. Do you have any recommendations? This was a bit long, I suppose. I had a conversation with a friend of mine recently about things and it just got me thinking, could be that's why my pen wouldn't stop. Or perhaps I'm just overcompensating for the distance, who knows. In any case, I hope this letter finds you well too. If you want to meet up, that's really risky with all the extra watching they've been pulling, but perhaps you can Apparate me from Tallygarunga's entrance to your house? A bit hard to keep tabs on me if you do that. Reminds me I can't wait until I get my own Apparating license. Please take care and I hope to hear from you soon, Meadow
"...Come again?" For a moment, Meadow's brain refused to process the question, so alien was that very concept. Once she did, her face contorted slightly in confusion. Did she have 'tingly feelings' for Travis? Did she want to have him as her own and was trying to keep Remi away from him because of it? "...Merlin, no." She shuddered. "Never. That would be like... Liking my brother." She was visibly disgusted at the notion. Not at the man himself, not at all; she just couldn't envision him as anything other than precisely a sibling. Not to mention his way/obsession with the ladies made her extremely self conscious to begin with. She'd prefer to avoid worsened self esteem issues. "That's not the issue at all. I'm just saying... If you're looking for something serious with him, he's not the best person for it right now." At least not until he stopped flirting with every woman under the sun. "I just don't want you getting accidentally led on and wind up getting hurt. He can go out with a broomstick for all I care."
1st Year - Current: Tallygarunga, Flinders House
- Tendency to have a crush on random people too easily, for superficial reasons more often than not (i.e. they looked at her just right), but is too shy to pursue any of them and never had a significant other;
- Is deeply embarrassed of her own body. Due to being an extremely late bloomer, her self image issues persisted despite filling out nicely. As such, she's very self conscious of any sort of intimacy and quite afraid of it;
- Her parents are extremely strict, and purity-obsessed: she can only befriend people of status, purebloods, and may only see men whom intend to take on certain career paths and come from a prestigious background. She can only plan to take on certain type of career that would elevate the family name, or else she faces being disowned. They intend for her to have children, even though having any would most likely kill her. She doesn't mention this even to close friends, whom think all is fine and dandy at the Richards house;
- Bisexual and horrified of it, since her parents are vehemently homophobic;
- She's absolutely horrified of defying her parents based on these reasons, even though every fiber of her being screams at her to do so;
- Is forced to take as many subjects as possible, and to take specific subjects regardless of whether she likes them or not;
- She likes fiction and things generally seen as geeky, but isn't allowed to;
- She dodges the friend/dating ban on people of 'lesser status' by only hanging out with them in Tallygarunga, so friends of the family won't tell on her - even if they're 2 hours away.
- Doesn't mind being called Amy instead of Meadow;
- Has some health issues which remain undisclosed to the general public, but they had her be home schooled for the entirety of her childhood due to their seriousness;
- Extremely late bloomer;
- Undecided regarding her future;
- Has a mind-boggling distaste for a number of subjects she seems to enroll, and her grades suffer a little because of it;
- Occasional spurts of geeky knowledge despite seeming anything but;
- Okay with small groups but uncomfortable in large gatherings.
Meadow is a diligent and intelligent young woman whom dreams of becoming a nurse, just so she can prevent people from suffering through what she's endured all her life - or, at least, help them and comfort them. Knowing the path is extra difficult to take for someone as fragile as her, she works extra hard to ensure she's ahead of the curve and earns her spot out of merit rather than pity.
She is friendly in moderation, having no problem laughing and joking around her friends, although she doesn't like being loud, or reckless. Her speech tends to deviate from anything more than PG, and the company she keeps often reflects that. Despite this, she's very permissive in general as she knows the feeling of being shut down and told 'to behave as she's expected' all too well.
She is considerate of other's thoughts and feelings, finding that mental wellness is as important as physical wellness out of her own experience with both matters. As such, she goes out of her way not to put anybody down and is rather easy-going, so long as she feels comfortable with what's going on. Of course, this is occasionally overpowered by the inevitable snark she displays when irritated, or how defensive she can get when teased over something, which she greatly dislikes. This often causes her to come across as more strict than she intends to be.
Having been at death's door one too many times, she's grown a bit hesitant of endangering herself in any way. She feels like she's clinging to life by the skin of her teeth, she'd much rather cut and run to preserve it for as long as she possibly can rather than put on a brave face and become collateral damage. This is also true emotionally, as she's terrified of defying her parents' choice of a career for her.
She is very honest about her feelings - to herself, that is. Fear overtakes her divulging much about herself to anyone else, scared it'll spread and reach her parents' ears somehow. As such, while she's aware of them, she's mostly incapable of dealing with them due to depriving herself from their optimal outlet.
Meadow is a young woman who's met a massive growth spurt very recently. She was once known to be frail, weak, small kid whom hadn't seemingly gone through puberty despite her age; but once her sixteenth anniversary hit, pubescence hit her like a freight train. If people only saw her in the beginning of the school year, they wouldn't have recognized her at this point.
She stands at the average height of 163 cm and sports long, brown, rich wavy hair that's loose most of the time. She has blue eyes and smiles rather easily, although her cheeks are prone to go red due to shyness and embarrassment around certain folks.
She lacks fitness because of her health issues, although she tries to make up for this by walking everywhere. Said health issues seem to be under control at this point, so she doesn't look sickly in the least anymore, being able to pass for an able-bodied student with no trouble.
Meadow Amy Richards was born to a prestigious pureblood family. She was the second child, and, unfortunately, was considered the disappointment out of the two due to being very sickly from the moment of birth. It's a miracle that she survived, and that doesn't even speak for how tumultuous her healthcare was throughout her life.
Due to this, she was confined to her bedroom most of her young life. Her body couldn't withstand going to school - instead, she was home schooled. Still obsessed with status, her parents pushed her in this education, often too hard. She came to crave fleeing and leaving Melbourne behind, but she couldn't. That was, until her body started to get better.
Her body managed to strengthen itself just enough by the time she could enroll in a proper magical education. While her parents were momentarily considering not letting her go, they soon became keen on the thought of having someone else deal with the responsibility - they didn't want to be permanently thought of as 'that one couple with the pathetic daughter'. She was sent there and told to stay in the dorms after making a laundry list of behavioral demands she was too scared not to comply with.
Being enrolled in Tallygarunga gave her a much needed medicine she had never been given before in her short lifetime - pure, unbridled energy. She visibly improved both physically and mentally when exposed to something outside of her bedroom's walls, and speech that didn't sound like either parent's berating voice. This also meant she could meet with her sister more often, whom was at the tail end of her studies herself. She fit right in with the crowd, and found her calling very quickly - nursing.
No matter how involved she became in studying and friendship, however, there was always a voice in the back of her mind - she can't be a nurse, or she'll be disowned. She can't befriend a good portion of people in the school, or she'll be disowned. She should focus on finding a fine suitor to marry, or she'll be disowned. This inner conflict affects her every day reasoning, and she sorely needs to find a source of courage to finally defy the Richards family once and for all.