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Setting

Date:
February, 2019
Season:
Summer
School Status:
Tallygarunga: Term One, VMU: Summer Break

House Points

Sturt
0
Flinders
0
Spencer
0
Bourke
0
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An AU non-canon Harry Potter-inspired forum roleplay set in Australia.

Adoptable Spotlight

THE AUSTRALIAN HOME OF MAGIC

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Tally Staff ☆ Tallygarunga Librarian★ Sadrienne
40 year old Halfbreed Sorceraic ☆ She/Her

Mid-90s Melbourne, autumn. A Friday night.

The music was loud, the girls were moving, and the customers were happy. That was how she liked things. Sauntering through the main bar, she threw smiles left and right to her regulars, laughed. No---she wasn't working right now. No, they couldn't convince her to. It was early in the night yet, and she was ready to enjoy it. Cigarette to her lips, the smoke trailed behind her as she stepped out of the lights and noise, into the streets of Melbourne. Crowded, dark, the alleyway was full of graffiti. She knew every inch of it, had been here longer than some of the artwork. Proper jobs came and went, but this she always came back to.

"Oi, you're out early."

The voice made her pause, turn around. Blow exasperated smoke out her mouth and nostrils. She flicked ash to the ground, staring at the wretch in front of her. He'd made her a deal, was he here to deliver? The look on his face said no, and she wasn't interested in anything more. 

"What do you want, Ty?" she sighed. "Are you here to make more empty promises? Because I don't see her with you. It's beginning to feel like you can't find her."

"I can, I just---I need more time. I'll get there, babe." Slowly he shuffled forward, toward her. She took a step back as he did. Shook her head. 

"I'm not your 'babe' anymore, I thought that was clear?" at the door, two of the bigger bouncers lurked. She knew they were there, and he did too. They weren't an idle threat, either. "You assaulted my client, Tyler. You reckon you can find Ameliana, excellent. Find her for me. But that is all. At least until you get this anger of yours in check." She looked back toward the door, gave the bouncers a subtle wave. Everything was fine here. Tyler was sober, more likely to burst into tears than lash out. The bouncers didn't move anyway, and she was grateful for that.

"I promise, I'll be better, babe," pleaded Tyler. "I miss you. I don't care... about the other stuff. Just. Come home?"

She shook her head.

"Not yet," she said. "Go home, Ty. When you've proven you can keep your cool, let me do the things I need to do without getting jealous... maybe then I'll join you." The end of the cigarette came way too soon, she dropped the stub to the footpath and ground it out with the toe of her stillettos. She didn't stay to see what he did, just turned her back and walked on down the alley in search of a better night. 

That meant getting as far away from this district as she could. Familiar faces surrounded her here, she was the queen of this strip. No one would dare touch her here, she had powerful clients with a very loose attachment to the law. It was hardly somewhere she could relax, though. A better suburb, a brighter street. A bar on one of Melbourne's more iconic and well-reputed streets. She made her way there, let the unfamiliar crowd melt away her frustration at Tyler. She didn't like this side of him. The pathetic side. Once upon a time he'd thrilled her, challenged her, and then... it fell apart. As it always did.

A long sigh, a drink ordered, held in one hand. She surveyed the crowd of well-dressed people. Was this a function of some sort that she'd walked into? At least she looked the part. More formal than the average nightwear, she always dressed to impress. You never knew who was out there with a wallet full of cash, after all.

Another cigarette. That's what she needed. She found one and---where was her lighter? She had just had it. The bar was a wizard venue, yes, but... her wand had mixed results. Always had. Sometimes it worked, other times she set her eyebrows alight. Not ideal in a public venue. 

"I'm so sorry, sir," she tapped the shoulder of the nearest man. "Could I trouble you for a light? I seem to have misplaced my wand..."

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Ministry Head ☆ Australian Minister of Magic, Co-Owner: The Drunken Roo, Owner: Victoria Magical & Native Wildlife Park★ LilyCat
52 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

A couple of months since Tanya had left, the stress from their difficulties in having children having turned their home into more of a ticking time bomb regarding the pair of them. Stuart had been supportive as possible, but his wife seemed to be even more frustrated by his acceptance that they might not be able to naturally conceive, and his suggestion that they perhaps consider seeing a specialist to see where their problem lay and what they could do. Even if they had to adopt, or had to get a donor, or never had kids at all, he would have stood by her to the end, but then she had taken off without a word. Just a letter left on the table that she thought they should have a break. He'd managed to talk to her over the phone since then, but all she'd said was that she didn't think they would work out, that they'd made a mistake in getting married. It wasn't what he'd wanted to hear.

Stuart hadn't told anyone in his family, but he was aware that they knew. You didn't really need to be told something was wrong when a man's wife disappeared and he barely wanted to talk to anyone himself. He'd been avoiding them. Stu didn't want to talk about it. Everyone else was doing pretty well currently, and the last thing he really needed was for Kate to find out and then start talking about how she was right about Tanya and that he never should have married the woman. He was very well aware the women didn't like one another, something that had carried on from their Penrose days or something. The best he could do was delve into work. He'd been teaching part time at the University while his application to the Ministry was being reviewed. He knew he was a shoe-in, but wasn't going to celebrate before the work was given. He and Alan had both studied education, but Stuart had gone a step ahead of that as well, moving onto governmental and Ministry studies. He wanted to be able to do more for the world he cared about, and both he and Alan teaching at Tally was only ever going to lead to a competition that he didn't want to have with his cousin.

So, while he waited for a phonecall or owl, the man sat at a bar with a whiskey bottle that was partially emptied already, refreshing his drink when it ran low and occasionally asking for fresh ice for his glass. He hadn't so much gone out to socialise as simply to get out of his empty and quiet house. He'd always hated being alone, and wondered if he should get a dog or something.

As Stuart took another sip of his drink, he heard a voice from beside him and lifted a brow as his head turned to cast a glance toward the woman. The first thing he noticed were her eyes, he'd never seen such an intense blue before. Though he still didn't miss a beat as he drew a Zippo from his top pocket, before then looking at what she had in her hand and tutted quietly at her.

"That's definitely not what you should be smoking," The man stated easily, before a lop-sided grin tugged at his lips and he reached inside his jacket pocket, drawing out a pair of cigars, offering one toward her. "If you're gonna ask me for a light, you may as well smoke something worth it," The light grin was joined with an easy chuckle as he cut the tip for her and then flicked the lighter. "Always preferred the old fashioned way, myself. Wands are too cumbersome to go drawing out in the midst of having a few drinks."

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Tally Staff ☆ Tallygarunga Librarian★ Sadrienne
40 year old Halfbreed Sorceraic ☆ She/Her

"A cigar man, hm?" She lit her cigarette all the same, twirling the unlit cigar between her fingers. She considered a witty quip about the size difference between cigarettes and cigars, something something compensating. He seemed friendly enough though, and if Tyler were to follow her steps and peer into the bar, he might assume she was still working and leave. The man was very much like most of her clients these days. Classy looking, though most were high level businessmen and politicians. She wondered what this stranger did. Whatever it was, he wasn't there yet. Not quite. A few years, and this was someone who could only succeed.

She could pick them. They went from faces at work to faces on the news, and she knew their innermost desires. Of course, they never took her with them. That was part of the contract. She was part of a life unseen, a secret to be hushed away and that's why they paid her tremendously. They came for her skills, and stayed for her silence.

"I see no reason I can't have both," a sly smile crept across her lips, the cigarette almost gone already. The cigar soon replaced it, and she blew smoke rings to one side. "I believe magic predates mechanised lighting systems, so what is truly old fashioned? But I get your point. To be honest, even if I had my wand it would be useless. Rubbish at magic," the admittance was wry, as off-hand as she could make it. "Hard to get anywhere in this world without a bit of magic. Hard to get anywhere in the muggle world if you weren't raised that way, too, I suppose. Hard life in this society if you're anything but a full-blooded wizard. It's not made for people who are different." 

Her usual rant. The unfairness of society, blah blah. She put a hand up, as if to stop his train of thought.

"Full blooded witch, I am, mind," she said, in case he might confuse her with anything else. "Just rubbish at bloody magic." The woman sighed, offering a wry smile. He hadn't run from her, that was nice. He was a handsome sort too. Now why couldn't they find her anything like this to wed? If she was going to be forced to look at something for the rest of her life, it might as well be pretty. She'd been told quite firmly that no outsiders would be considered. Someone had to be there in her stead if she insisted on being out here all the time. Someone had to sire, and likely raise, the next in line.

"Mercedes, by the way," she shook her head, realising she hadn't even introduced herself. "Would you like to buy me a drink?"

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Ministry Head ☆ Australian Minister of Magic, Co-Owner: The Drunken Roo, Owner: Victoria Magical & Native Wildlife Park★ LilyCat
52 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

"Prefer 'em to cigarettes. Actually don't touch smokes myself. Healthy body, healthy mind and all that boulderdash," The man offered a wry chuckle as he clipped his own cigar and set it between his lips before lighting it. She was playing friendly and he already had some idea of the kind of lady that she might be. As much as she knew people, so did he, and he also knew the kinds of men that usually hung around this place and the women that they picked up. That hadn't been why he'd come here thought. It was simply the first place he'd seen when he'd got out of his last lecture for the day. His head tipped in easy acknowledgement of her decision for both, before a small smirk tugged at his lips around the cigar before he blew a perfect ring over the bar.

"Touche. Maybe you should be lecturing my classes for me," Stuart mused wryly, though he then went quiet while making a silent gesture toward the bar tender as they passed bay the pair. Soon after, a second glass with ice was set down on the bar top while a brow rose at the young woman's rant over the unfairness of the world. He could understand to a point. He'd done a great deal of study on the treatment of those who were not of pure wizarding blood, or who weren't even completely human, and knew that there was a great deal of difficulty in the majority of the world over it. "Guess you didn't go to Tally then. Best school in the world, of course I'm completely biased." He offered a small winning smile for a brief moment, but then it calmed into a rather easygoing genuine smile as he began to top up his drink, and then poured a second.

However, before she could reach for the extra drink, he placed a hand on it and lifted a finger.

"That's a shit fake name, I just have to say," The man said, blunt as the glare of sunlight through a parting of curtains. "So let's try something. For every bit of at least partly real information you offer about yourself, you can have a drink. Starting with a better name I can use than... Mercedes," The man made a face as he said the name, almost comical in the twisted expression, though it returned to his light easy grin within moments, "Something that's more connected to you. Doesn't have to be your exact name... just something more real."

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Tally Staff ☆ Tallygarunga Librarian★ Sadrienne
40 year old Halfbreed Sorceraic ☆ She/Her

"Bodies are here to be destroyed," she shrugged. "We don't take them with us."

She really couldn't bring herself to care all that much about life, or death, or anything like that. It all seemed trivial, most days. You lived until you stopped living and that was the end of it. If a few cigarettes hastened the journey, she wasn't going to refuse. It was largely a terrible ride anyway. Her interest was piqued by the name of the school though, her head tilted slightly as he spoke about Tallygarunga. She'd heard of it. Very little of it good. And yet this classy young man had been there? Interesting. She flicked ash to the floor, raising an eyebrow in baffled innocence when he stopped her taking the drink.

"Fake?" she shook her head, sliding a driver license from a slim wallet. Printed in capital letters, MERCEDES L ROWE. "My father loved fast cars, and mother wouldn't let him name me Ferrari," she said with a shrug. "Mercedes was the only one they could agree on. My second name is Liana if that makes you feel any better, but Mercedes is my legal name." Not her true name, no---but what was? She'd had so many names over the years. Variations of variations, none of them felt like hers. Her true name had never felt right either, though. A heavy burden she would rather ignore. Liana, though. That came from her mother. 

"Well, it is for now," she made it sound like an admission. "Waiting for some paperwork to go through to ditch that surname. That one belongs to a soon-to-be ex-husband. My friends call me Mercy, some just call me Blue. It's just a name, though. A rose by any other name, and all of that. And you still haven't given yours yet, sweetheart."

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Ministry Head ☆ Australian Minister of Magic, Co-Owner: The Drunken Roo, Owner: Victoria Magical & Native Wildlife Park★ LilyCat
52 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

"We certainly don't, but I'd like to take care of mine for as long as possible. Still got dreams of achieving the whole big family thing one day, y'see, and trying to give piggyback rides to your grandkids when your body's all wrecked would be utter hell. But hey, I'm not gonna judge, you do you," The man smiled easily, taking a sip of his drink, before then offering a cheeky smirk her way, "Just make sure you have a TicTac before you go trying to kiss non-smokers or something. That taste is terrible, the literal worst." An impishly cheeky grin followed as he offered a light wink and click of his tongue. There was nothing in his body language that implied he was hitting on her or anything though, it appeared he was just genuinely being a bit of a shit head for his own shits and giggles, appreciating the banter for what it was.

A whistle sounded at the appearance of the license, before he shook his head and chuckled softly.

"I dunno. Still not sure I'm buyin' it, but I'll take Liana," The man offered a small nod and removed his hand from the glass, sliding it across to her without any more questions regarding her name. Whether it was real or not was her own business, so was whether her parents really debated over naming their magical child after a vehicle. As much as he didn't like to judge people, he had a feeling that asking men for a drink was something she was rather accustomed to, but he didn't mind the company. It was better than drowning his sorrows alone.

"Ah yes, I apologise Ms Liana. I'm Stuart Blair," The man began with a small bow of his head, "Normally I would introduce myself straight away, but you see, I'm currently taking advantage of being able to have people not know who I am upon sight for as long as possible. I'm aiming for Minister of Magic within about... hm, say twenty-ish years." A small sage nod was given, but there was still a glint of amusement and cheek in his gaze. "What do you think my chances are?"

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Tally Staff ☆ Tallygarunga Librarian★ Sadrienne
40 year old Halfbreed Sorceraic ☆ She/Her

She gave a visible grimace at the sound of "big family". Families were complicated. Messy. Nothing she'd had a good experience with, and the prospect of being surrounded by children sounded awful to her. He seemed to accept her second name, and that was okay by her. It was just a name. Tonight she would be Liana. Tomorrow she would go back to being Mercedes and back to dealing with all of Mercedes's problems. Like Tyler. And Lillian's inconvenient visits to remind her of unwanted duties elsewhere. She wished she had stayed gone. Lived wholly in this world forever. Not a great life, but one she at least understood. One she could at least do.

And she didn't need him to buy the drink, no---that was the single advantage to the other life. For once she had access to money. It was a sport. Seeing if she could get him to supply the drink. Measuring herself by the responses she got. Worthy, unworthy? The more effort it took to convince them, the less of an ego boost it was. He was interesting, though. She felt that she might actually enjoy trying to persuade this one. A mental gymnastics skipping through the boundaries between pleasant conversation and flirtatious advances, he could probably play the game well. He had a sense of charm about him. He had a way of refusing that didn't feel like a rejection.

Interesting.

"Stuart." She let the name roll off her tongue, her accent foreign where she forgot to pull it in line. Vaguely French. She turned her head when she blew smoke, at least a little considerate. "I would have to say you're a strong chance, Stuart. Right look. Right attitude. You have a way with words. A little too much soul left in you yet," she took her drink, downing in smoothly. Mercedes made chugging a drink look like an elegant move worthy of the Queen of England. The glass back down, she batted her eyelashes coyly at Stuart.

"And what in exchange for the next one, Mr Minister?"

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