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Aiden Longhurst

Invite And a Picture of You

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

Aiden sat with his back against the wall, facing in toward the school buildings. This wasn't the "cool" way to sit out here, but he couldn't be bothered scaling the crumbling bricks to sit on the opposite side, which was technically "out of bounds". He hadn't come out here to be a rebel, or to smoke, or drink, or whatever other kids did where the teachers couldn't see them. Aiden just wanted to be alone.

It was an odd desire for the boy, who tended to float around the school with no particular attachments. He wasn't unpopular, but nor was he surrounded by loyal friends. He drifted in and out of groups, had acquaintances and people he was friendly with, but none of them were his friends per se. Aiden wasn't a lonely boy, he just didn't have anywhere particular that he belonged. Normally, that lack of connection didn't bother him. He had Valerie and the rest of his family, and if he really needed something desperately---there was always Alan.

Aiden did wonder if other students avoided him because of his connection to the headmaster. Or maybe it was just because he spent all of his time with his nose buried in heavy medical textbooks that he was deemed too nerdy to approach. Not that he would have noticed any real attempt to connect with him.

Picking up a stick, Aiden began to scratch little ditches in the dirt. These were the days where he wished he had a best friend or two. Much as Alan liked to say he could help, you couldn't just run to the headmaster with anything. Besides. He didn't want an adult. He wanted to vent. He wanted to scream at the world and its unfairness. 

Adam had found his secret project. Now all of his work was locked away. Supposedly to "help" him, but Aiden didn't see it that way. The stress of losing his main focus had brought the nightmares back. Sleep was hard to come by, and he feared the close of his eyelids every night.

So he'd come out here, where there wouldn't be many other students. To be alone, deliberately. Because that was better than being in a crowd and still feeling alone.

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

Given the state of everything Kenna was in a relatively good mood.  She had come back to school to discover the one friend she had been able to make and get close to, was no longer at Tally. Not that Kenna had thought of herself as a lonely person.  She was frequently surrounded by others but she sometimes wondered why she had not taken the time to keep the friends she had been close to… or why she had not made closer friends over the years.  She pent so much time working at the inn… she sighed.  Kenna had actually been excited for the term.  She had decided to put more focus into her studies.  

That and she had finally told her parents that she did not really want to take the inn over.  That she was far more interested in doing something with magical creatures.  Which was why she was headed out someplace where she would have a little more privacy than she was used to.  The West wall was usually quiet which was why she was a little surprised to spot someone in her usual spot.  Kenna however didn’t mind, she was always happy to talk.  She had gotten into a habit of listening to the guests talk about things way above her age. 

Just this holiday she had listened to a man lament about his cheating his wife.  She smiled as she approached the boy.  ”Hello, mind if I join you here?”  She asked she sat down.  She was not planning on going anywhere but she was happy to sit in silence.  ”I’m Kenna, I have seen you around but I don’t think we have actually met.’  She said with a smile. 

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

Aiden looked up from the ground, pausing his idle digging for just a moment. He was usually somewhere between silently serious or quietly content, wandering through the halls absorbed in whatever Aiden thoughts he was having. It was rare for him to show any sign of discontent or sadness, or indeed any extreme emotion. Aiden Longhurst was about as emotionally average as you could get. In terms of his behaviour, he was similarly average.

Aiden didn't do anything to stand out. It was hard enough getting through school when so many people knew your story, and knew of you when they didn't know you. He tried not to reveal himself as "tragedy boy" too often. When he'd first come to Tallygarunga, it was all he'd been known for. The tragedy boy with the coma brother. Valerie hated it.

"Oh, right. Kenna." A brief flash of recognition flashed across his face. "Aiden. You're in Spencer, right?"

Though he didn't get himself too involved in the lives of others, Aiden did observe a lot. He knew the faces that went with most names. He nodded, resuming his stick digging as Kenna sat down. It was a listless and empty movement, out-of-character for his usual content self.

"It must be a party in that common room..." he murmured. "What brings you out here?"

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

Kenna had learned to observe many things, she spent most of her free time watching people and so it was not entirely odd that she had started to pick up on some more subtle emotions.  Those who came to the inn to escape were always the ones who interested her the most.  What were they trying to get away from?  Why had they chosen the inn?  And what were they going to?  They often didn’t share as much as those who were simply bored with their lives, but she did find that she enjoyed putting the puzzle together.   Or she simply enjoyed the ability to observe and listen without being part of the drama. 

That was one of the many things she had grown tired of with her peers.  The girls could be so catty at times.  It was not like Kenna was and better than they were at times.  She shifted as she got comfortable beside him.  ”Yep, that’s me.”  She said cheerfully.  Kenna had often been told she had an alarmingly cheery disposition.  Not that she had minded that, it was kind of nice to be known for being a happy person.  There were so many worse things in life.  She let out a small sigh as she looked over at him.  ”Nice to meet you, meet you.”  That was the thing about Tally, you heard about people and you knew more about them without actually knowing them. 

 

”It can be, but sometimes I like the quiet.”  She said with a shrug of her shoulders.  ”There is only so much someone can sit through before they really need to find some quiet.  It’s always weird coming back from break I spend so many hours in quiet in the end.”  She said with a smile.  It was a rather interesting thing.  ”What are you doing out here? “  She turned the question back on him. 

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

That was fair. It was no secret that the Spencer common areas were loud, energetic, and intense. Aiden knew that he would barely survive ten minutes before he would need to leave and find some breathing space.  He often felt that was probably why the Spencer students were kept underground. Were they left to the thin walls that housed the other dorms, the noise would carry for eons. Gods knew, you could hear the Headmaster snore from halfway up Kookynie Halls as it was.

"It was very quiet here over the holidays." Aiden offered. "Barely anyone stays. Me and Val weren't going to, but Adam had to go overseas for a few weeks---so it made sense." And he'd enjoyed the freedom of a library (mostly) to himself. He'd even helped the librarian select some new books to order, which he chose to see as an honour... rather than what was obviously Adele shifting the boredom of her own work onto him.

At her question, Aiden frowned. What was he doing out here? That was hard to define.

"Thinking." was the best answer he had. It was true, so that was a plus. He dug the stick deeper into the ground, dislodging a rock with spring-loaded force that sent it bouncing forward through the grass. "Like you said. It gets crowded in the commons sometimes, even for Flinders. Too many people. Need to just..." he looked up, and gestured to the dry, flat grounds. 

"Get to where I can work some things out." Aiden finished, with a quiet sigh.

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

Kenna nodded.  ”I work the front desk at my family’s inn… so it’s usually pretty quiet there.  Sometimes the guests come to talk, and usually its about things way over my head and experience.  I am not the right person for marriage counseling.”  She shook her head.  ”But I do know some rather intimate details about the life of married people.”  Things she could have done without.  It was sort of gross when she thought about it.  But at least she knew what sort of issues might accompany her if she did get married someday.  Right now the young Veela just wanted to get through school. Marriage was so far away. 

”Did you have an okay holiday then?”  She asked.  She wondered if she would like staying.  It seemed like she would get lonely.  She didn’t encounter her peers often at the inn, but she did always have someone to talk to when she went to look for someone.  The cook had become one of her good friends.  He was a rather nice man and he had a daughter her age.  Kenna didn’t have the boy drama his daughter seemed to have but she didn’t mind talking to him about how to talk to her.  And he helped her with her father which was a good thing. 

Kenna let out a surpirised laugh as the rick shot from the earth and bounced.  ”Nice shot.”  she smiled leaning back.  ”I guess that is the drawback for big schools, lots of people.  Seems you can’t be alone anyway… even when we try to get away.”  They had both come for a bit of peace and found they had company.  ”Wanna talk about it?  I can be a pretty good sounding board.  And I don’t have too many people to go and blab your secrets too…  If I did however I still wouldn’t blab… not even under torture.”  She smiled at him.  

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

Aiden perked up a little at the mention of the inn. That was something he did relate to, at least a little.

"People do like to talk." he nodded. "When I was younger, I used to live with my brother and his wife---they ran The Drunken Roo. And sometimes me and Val would sit down by the bar while Matt worked. People don't seem to care that you're just a kid. They just... keep spilling their guts. It's weird." but it was interesting, and for a long time Aiden had been a little hooked on the romantic exploits of one Barry Burdett and his seven girlfriends (who naturally, did not know the other six existed).

But he supposed he'd learned a lot about what not to do, and Matt had been very insistent on pointing out all of Barry's poor choices so that the boy understood that they were wrong. Aiden was quite happy with his comfortable and secure life with Adam and Cass, but he did sometimes miss the Drunken Roo. It really wasn't the same since Matt's accident, even hanging out with Phil was less fun. Phil was too stressed now. He just got angry when you stole food.

"It was a good holiday. Alan made sure we had lots to do, and when Adam came back we went camping a lot." Adam was obsessed with camping. Aiden wasn't so charmed by it, but he did enjoy the time with Valerie and Hazel, messing around in the mud-coloured water of the river. 

Aiden had to admit, his life was pretty good. He knew he was loved, he had a good family around him, and even when he was upset with them it was usually for something they did out of love. Still, there was always that feeling chasing him that he needed to do more, be more. He needed all the answers he could find so that he could be strong, that he wouldn't be powerless, and he would never again find himself unable to help someone who needed him.

"You ever feel like..." the words began to slip out before he could stop them. Kenna was relaxed, too easy to talk to. "Like your whole life, you're going to be paying for a mistake you made when you didn't know enough to fix things properly?"

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

It was rather amazing how much adults said to kids.  She was also glad that this was not an isolated phenomenon either.  Kenna always thought people just talked to her because she was a veela.  Kenna would never use her charms to make people want to talk to her, but there was still some charm that she exuded.  It was much harder to control it when she was talking to someone she liked and was relaxed with.  Aiden for example.  She didn’t know him, but she liked him so far.  Then again that was always Kenna.  She lifed everyone, even when she had a reason not to.  There were some people that she had not been fond of, nor would she be fond of them.  A boy in class when she was a first year who cut her braid.  She twirled a strand of hair around her finger absently as she thought about it. 

”Its kind of crazy right?  First to like spill your guts about intimate things to a stranger, and not just a stranger, but a kid!” She shook her head.  ”At least it seems to be an adult thing and not a I am the only hostage they can vent to thing.”  she said with a small laugh.  Adults were so weird… that was all she understood from it all.  She looked at him and smiled.  ”Camping?  Like in tents… or the RV sort… my mom wanted my dad to get one but they never really followed through.’  Kenna had not been camping, not beyond a night she slept in a tent in the yard of the inn when she had decided she was running away.  She didn’t make it far, she was scared of the dark and at 8 years old the closet light was the house. 

Kenna tucked her hair behind her ears as he asked her a question, one she had not had to contemplate before.  Had she been unfortunate enough to have stumbled into that situation.  ”No, I don’t I have.”  She said.  She had to feel for him however, though she could argue the mistake was not a mistake if you didn’t know better, that was just a steep learning curve.  There was a quote… from CS Lewis about experience being a teacher… She could see whatever this was, it ws bothering him quite a bit.  ”Maybe if you explained it I would understand a little better?” 

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

"Tents." Aiden replied with a rueful smile. "And only those 'cause if you don't sleep in a tent you get eaten alive by mozzies."

Knowing Adam, he would have insisted they all sleep out under the stars. For all his fancy suits, sleek design skills, and an actual drawer dedicated to hair product---Adam loved the outdoors. But even Adam didn't like mozzies enough to sleep among them. The tents were cheap, small, and they all bundled in with a mattress so thin they were basically on the ground anyway. It was fun, Aiden supposed. Listening to Cass's stories in the half-light, Hazel trying to scare Valerie and accidentally spilling the popcorn all through the bedding.

They were happy moments. Good memories. He had a lot of them, Adam and Cass did everything they could to make sure that happy memories were made every day. The bad ones still lingered, though. Aiden frowned and dug the stick deeper into the dirt.

"So imagine," he started, frowning as he tried to think of a way to explain it. "Imagine you're on a long road and you're driving a wooden cart. And along the way, one of the wheels starts to get broken. And you don't know what to do, so you do nothing. Makes your ride a bit uncomfortable, bit more bumpy---and then one day it comes off completely. And it's gone, it's broken so bad now that even if you couldn't even fix it if you were a cart wheel specialist." Aiden's voice was low as he spoke, a thin, deep, ditch scarring the earth where he dug.

"But there's nowhere to get a new wheel from. No other wheels fit, and doesn't matter what you do---your ride won't ever be as smooth again. And you didn't make the wheel come off, no---but you didn't do anything about it, so it's still kind of your fault and none of that really matters anyway, because... because you're stuck with a horrible ride no matter what. Just, always uncomfortable and bruised, all because you didn't learn how to fix the wheel before it broke completely." the analogy was good... he thought. Maybe it wasn't.

"Then one day, you find out one of your other wheels is breaking. So... you try and learn how to fix it this time, but you just... don't know if you're gonna find the answer before it breaks too."

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

”That sounds like it could be fun… with the right people”  She said with a small smile.  She did think it might be a little fun.  She was not sure she would want to camp.  Kenna loved all animals but the idea of the bugs… that sort of got to her.  Not that she was scared… but she was not a fan.  The idea of bugs crawling on her made her itch now just thinking about it and she mentally shuddered.  ”I’ve camped in the yard… I thought I might try to run away but I didn’t make it very far.”  She said with a sheepish smile.  ”I am not sure how I would actually fare in the wilderness- It sounds like it could be fun… without the mozzies.” Mozzies could ruin just about anything. 

It was hard for Kenna not to wrap the boy in a hug.  She felt for him. She didn’t know exactly what he was talking about- but at the same time she understood what he meant.  It had to be difficult… she had not been there, but she could understand a few things, the idea of not doing something, but seeing something happening.  Like when you saw someone get bullied and you didn’t say something.  Kenna had seen that happen a few times, she always worried what might happen and she did her best to step up… use her veela-ness for good.  At least she tried anyway.  She was not perfect and she knew it didn’t always work how she wanted it to.  At the very least, she would at least walk with them to their next destination. 

She nodded slowly.  ”I can understand what you are you saying.”  Though it was a challenge to make sense of it without proper content.  She let out a small sigh.  ”I am sorry that you are going through this.”  she watched as he was digging with the stick and she frowned at him.  It sounded as though he was having a very hard time with whatever it was that was bothering him.  ”Have you been able to at least talk about it with a wheel expert?”  She asked him.  It was hard to know what to ask without knowing the whole situation but she did have concern or his situation.  

”I mean, is there a wheel expert?  I want to be helpful but I know this is not about wheels… and honestly, I’m no good with cars.”  She shrugged as she picked at the grass separating it by strands. 

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

"I don't know if anyone really is a wheel expert." Aiden shrugged.

He'd tried to talk to people about it, but all they would ever say was that it wasn't his fault. That he had no reason to feel guilty. He was a child, no one expected him to be able to do something. It was like his feelings didn't matter because they weren't supposed to exist, and no one knew how to help him.

And he couldn't fix the past, Aiden knew that. He was stuck with a rough ride for life, and had been since he was a kid. Aiden had been old enough to have memories of life before it all went wrong, and though they weren't perfect---they always did feel that little bit more complete.

"Y'know, I think the experts are supposed to be our family. Parents. I mean, they teach us the most important things in life. Or---they're supposed to." Another painful part of Aiden's life. Adam and Cass were the best guardians he could ever have asked for, but he couldn't help that bitter jealousy when he saw the Burdetts together. The way the headmaster himself still went back to his Mum when he needed help, the way he doted on his kids. "So, maybe Dad was supposed to be there to teach me to fix wheels. But---he didn't. He only taught me how to break them more. And Mum never really had a chance to show me."

Aiden dug into his pocket, fishing out a crumpled photograph. He always had it with him somewhere, and he remembered the day it was taken. Out at the lake, the first day he'd met Matt and Adam. His mum had seemed so positive about the future, and there had been a lot of laughing. She was laughing in the photo. He flattened it out, showing it to Kenna. Some of the folds in the photo were so deep and worn that the picture had worn away. A blonde woman smiled through the cracks, hugging tight to a serious looking boy that could only be Aiden himself. 

"Last picture I got with her," Aiden mumbled. "She kept trying to make me smile. Wish I had."

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

She wrinkled her nose at the fact no one seemed to be a wheel expert.  Kenna gave a sympathetic sigh as she felt the frustration he was feeling at the moment.  It had to be a challenge… to not be able to change the things you wanted so badly to change.  She tossed the pieces of grass as she picked another, the familiar sound of grass ripping was one she was almost comforted by.  ”They are.” She agreed.  Family was supposed to be able to tell you how to fix things.  It seemed his has not been able to help him out with that.  She wished things were different for him.  It was unfair to feel so helpless. 

”Oh wow.”  She said as she looked at the treasured photo.  ’she was beautiful.”  She said with a smile. She was honestly stunning.  ”I think I like the picture with you and your serious face.”  She said with a smile.  Her small fingers brushed the photos lightly and she looked at him.  ”Have you looked into having this restored?  I know someone who can do that… I have many older brothers… 7 actually.”  she said with a small laugh.  ”My Brother Kyle restores art and photos and stuff… “  she felt everyone deserved that option.  ”I don’t know if he could do it but it might not hurt to ask.”  she shrugged her shoulders. 

She then turned towards him.  ”I am so sorry you feel this way, and that no one told you how to fix it.”  It had to be a challenge… She let out a small sigh as she thought about it.  ”Maybe you just need some help?  Sometimes having someone outside of the problem can help bring another perspective.  I mean I don’t know much about wheels, or what we are actually talking about.    But I am good at research.”  she said with a smile.  ”I could easily help you if wanted me to.  I totally get that it may not be any of my business, but… if you want the help.” 

She didn’t want him to feel pressured to take her help.  She was just hoping to help him as best she could.  It was a problem that wouldn’t be fixed easily from how it sounded but she hated to see anyway feel this way. 

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15 year old Halfblood Human ☆ He/Him

Aiden stared at the photo. He didn't have much else. His memories seemed so weak, he wasn't sure how much of it was accurate. Adam had only met his mother once or twice, and Cass had never met her at all. There wasn't anyone around to tell him about her. Her family had let her go well before he was born. Aiden wasn't sure he would want to meet his maternal family even if he could find them. 

He also wasn't sure how he felt about having the picture restored. What if it made the damage worse? How long would he be without it? Could he even be okay with someone else touching it? The thoughts made his gut swirl with uncertainty. All of their stuff had been binned and sold when the house was abandoned. No one had bothered to ask if he or Valerie wanted anything from it. Their clothes and a few toys had been taken with them. But pictures---negatives of the originals, albums, the glass figurines he remembered his mother dutifully gluing together over and over---all of that had been lost.

"My brother Matt---he took me and Val in when Mum was---when she died." he still couldn't say that word. It felt vulgar. True as it was, he danced around it. "He got in an accident a few years ago, he's in a coma and---" Aiden frowned. "I couldn't help Mum cause I wasn't old enough, I didn't know enough. Now I can... well, I can try. And find a way."

Saying it out loud he felt stupid. Try and find a way to wake the brother that some of the best doctors in Australia had failed to wake? When Kate had spent almost everything they had to get specialists and second, third, opinions to no avail? The Australian Minister for Magic had even had a hand in this and still no one could find a way---what business did Aiden have, believing that he could somehow unlock the answer?

What an idiot.

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Repository ☆ Sixth Year Kay
16 year old Halfbreed Veela ☆ her/she

Kenna didn’t push the issue of the picture.  He didn’t respond and she figured that was his way of declining her offer.  She understood- it was hart to part with something that was a sentimental keepsake.  It was still a good picture, creases and all. Kenna thought about what keepsakes she had that were important to her.  Nothing quite as precious as that picture.  She had a necklace that had been her grandmothers.  She touched the delicate butterfly that dangled from the silver chain around her neck.  It was not incredibly fancy but it was the one thing that she was relatively sentimental about. 

The story he told was sad.  She felt for him.  She was lucky her family had not experienced any sort of pain like he was experiencing.  However she did have a basic understanding of what made people hurt.  ”I am sorry that you have had to go through all this.”  it was a lot for someone to handle… She wanted to make him feel better but she knew that was not something she could do.  So the only thing she could think to do was to reach out and gently squeeze his hand. 

”Well, if you need a sounding board… I have always been pretty good at research… I can be your assistant if you need me to be.”  She said with a smile.  ”Or if you need someone to just sit and not talk… I can do that too.” Kenna just wanted people to be okay.  

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