Hogwarts, A Future

Sixteen Years After the War has Ended, Two Wizarding Schools Exist. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and Salem Academy
 
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 What now? (Josh)

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Louise Grey
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PostSubject: What now? (Josh)   Sat Oct 18, 2014 9:22 am

After practice this should have been a walk in the park, and yet Louise was feeling as jittery as a first year. She couldn't put it off much longer, she'd bottled out the last two times she'd come by, probably because she couldn't feel him there. She sighed and looked up at the guarding gargoyle. It had occurred to her she didn't know if there was a password she needed to get in.
"Hon if you're just going to stare you better clear off."
"What?" That was unexpected, she raised a brow at the beast.

The gargoyle huffed and cocked it's ugly nose up at her. "Well do you have a reason to be here? The head boy and head girl are busy you know."
"I was asked to come here." She glared at him, getting mildly annoyed.
"Tch! Well you'd better do something about that mess you call hair honey."

Louise moved her hand up to flatten it down a little, she'd been leaving it down more often, unless she found someone who would help her put it in a ponytail. "Hey! There's nothing wrong with my hair."
"If you say so, at least tuck your shirt in." She glared harder, the damn thing was having fun. She tucked her shirt in properly and straightened out her robes and cocked a brow at him. "Satisfied?"
"Me? Never but it will do. Head on in." It snickered and Louise rolled her eyes.
"I hope you grow moss." She snipped at him as she went inside and grinned at the flabbergasted spluttering she heard while the door closed again.

"Josh?" She called out, and looked around the room, compared to the regular common room it looked so much neater, if you ignored the papers scrolls and books all over the place.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sat Oct 18, 2014 9:33 am

Josh had given Louise Grey space. He didn't need to chase after her, because in time, he knew she'd come. He'd told the gargoyle at the entrance that if it saw the witch to let her in, and after the thing had raised an eyebrow, Josh had simply glared. Louise Grey was not someone he was interested in in that manner, and he was not stupid enough to bring girls back to the common room.

That afternoon, Josh had been sat working on his homework. Nothing interesting, but then school rarely was. Realising he'd forgotten his book, Josh had moved off to his dormitory for no more than a minute when he heard a voice that wasn't Tess'.

Finally.

Entering the common room from the stairs across from the doorway. "Grey." Josh acknowledged, his usual trademark smirk touching his features. "You finally came, I was wondering how long your stubborn streak would last. Impressive, how long it lasted." That was something of a tease as he motioned for the witch to take a seat. "Should I send for the House Elves to bring you anything? I already ate, but they're always pestering me in case I need anything."

Sitting back at the desk he was working, Josh picked up his quill and continued writing. "So, in your time of thinking, have you come up with the right way of wording what you want to say to me?" Josh asked, not looking up.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Oct 19, 2014 11:48 am

Answering the smirk with a smile of her own and ignoring the jab about her being stubborn she stepped into the room a little more. "Nice to see you too." she took the offered seat, leaving her bag on the floor next to her legs, she almost relaxed but caught herself and remained sitting upright, a little voice in her head reminding her 'you're a lady, act like one.' "I'm fine but thanks for asking."

For a while she just watched him sit back down and work, thinking about his question. What did she want to say to him? a few things came to mind but probably not right now. Perhaps coming here was a bad idea. Louise frowned and went to pick up her bag to leave but a fuzzy red blur came bounding out from it. "Professor!" The little squirrel had a crumpled parchment in his mouth and Louise paled considerably. "Don't you dare!" Clearly he wasn't listening and leapt onto Josh's desk and left the paper there before darting off again avoiding Louise's attempts at catching him. "You are so not getting any treats for a month." She stood glaring at him from the bottom of the curtains, while he preened himself at the top.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Oct 19, 2014 12:14 pm

Josh didn't react to the first couple of comments, merely took them in then threw them away because they were unimportant in that manner. Besides that, he had work to do and there was absolutely not enough time to drop menial comments back and forth.

There was a pause as Louise thought about his words, or maybe she'd left, Josh didn't look up to check in that moment. Which was why he was a little bit amused to see the rat she called a pet dropping a note in front of him. The witch was quickly hurrying after the thing, and whilst she was distracted, Josh picked it up and opened the letter.

Almost instantly the handwriting was very, very clear and his eyes turned in to something of a glare as Josh read it. The glare only grew as he read his mother's carefully crafted words. He'd known Louise had been informed, and his mother had made it quite clear this was not up for discussion. Josh however, knew that there was only ever one winner in a discussion between himself and his mother, and she never won.

This time, would be no different.

He would not say sorry to Louise, however, sorry was not a word that graced Josh's lips because that would mean the boy had been wrong. Josh was never wrong, of course. "You never wrote over the summer. I assume this was its cause?" Josh asked, looking to the witch who was glaring at the rat above her. Yes, she had lost an arm, and her father was something of a liability, but Josh didn't see cause to bin her.

"You didn't think to write, Grey? Question it?" Josh continued, his tone somewhat resonating disappointment that his mother had gotten to the witch so much. But then, to others Eleanor Murray might be deemed intimidating. "Did you believe I wanted this?" He finished, scrutinising the witch.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Oct 19, 2014 1:49 pm

Louise sighed and hung her head, rubbing her eyes with a thumb and forefinger. She looked at Josh then back at Professor, giving him a death glare before heading back to the sofa and sitting down again, resisting the urge to fidget.

"I don't know what I was supposed to think. I wake up on my own to that, and had to find somewhere else to live, writing didn't really even cross my mind. As for what you believe, I'm not a mind reader I don't pretend to know what you think. I didn't want to bring this up because I wasn't sure how you were going to react."

this was a really really bad idea, and it was starting to hurt again. The younger slytherin looked away, calming herself down rather that working herself up again. "So..what now?" She finally spoke after a while. "What are we?"

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Oct 19, 2014 2:06 pm

Josh listened to her explanation, scowling to himself. So her father hadn't come back for her? He was such a coward, if Josh weren't a better man he'd probably have felt anger towards the head of the Grey household. But he simply couldn't bring himself to do that.

Closing his book, Josh turned in his chair to look at the witch. She was dealing with emotions, he could work that much out, yet which emotions were lost on Josh. Instead he waited for her to speak and then decided to explain everything from his side, that would surely help, right?

"Grey, I need you to understand some things before we go further. To begin with, there is the issue of your blood purity, I can sweep that under the rug quite easily by pretending your mother doesn't exist and making up a false story that you're something of an incestuous relationship between your father and your aunt. Thus you got passed off as a Halfblood to avoid rumours." Josh explained, letting her in to the story he'd fed his parents quite competently because he'd forged many and more documents to prove it. Desmond wasn't going to complain if his family was joined to the Murrays, so Josh wasn't afraid of the backlash on that one.

"I'd sorted the arrangement on that information, so we were okay." Josh added a moment later, allowing a pause for the information to sink in.

"Then your father got caught up in the Black Widows. I don't know how much Miss Sheridan taught you, but the Murrays never take sides. No Pureblood worth their name takes sides in these things." He continued, hoping this was making sense. "Tying with your father therefore was becoming something unbeneficial and causing my mother to believe that you may think the same way. Without asking, yes.

"Then... Then you lost your arm." Josh concluded, motioning to the lacking limb. "Which, my mother will not tolerate weakness, or any slight mark on our impeccable reputation - she forgets of course that she is a divorcee. The first in our family." He continued, shaking his head.

"My parents wrote the letter without discussing it with me. The first I knew of it was two days later when I stated I was going to come to the hospital to see you. By which time it was too late." Looking down at his hands for a moment, Josh took the time to collect everything in his head. He despised his mother for this mess she'd caused, because that was precisely what it was, a complete mess.

"As to what happens now, that is dependant on what you have decided in your time away." He finished, looking back at the witch. There was no show of emotion, no want or need in his tone. The decision was her own, and Josh would not begin to sway that either way.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Tue Oct 21, 2014 7:28 am

"Grey, I need you to understand some things before we go further."

He had her full attention, she listened and cringed a little at the cover story he'd made for her but kept her mouth shut and tried not to think about it. She nodded showing she was following the explanation, starting to wonder why he'd gone to so much trouble to set all of this up. It didn't make much sense, other than maybe he was doing it to annoy his parents. She didn't know how to feel about that. As for Desmond, the less she saw of him the better in her opinion.

Hearing he'd almost come to see her seemed to perk her up a little, almost smiling at him. Actually now that she was thinking about it in a more clear state of mind...
"Well. I'd like to at least finish school before I decide anything. Other than that I would like to see you around a little more. I know rich coming from me after avoiding you for months. As insane as it sounds I did miss you, a lot." She did smile then only a little but enough.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Tue Oct 21, 2014 2:21 pm

The reply that came was not overly long, or overly decisive. Josh understood why she would want to wait, Louise had told him that much before so he was hardly surprised that she felt the same way now. But there was no definitive answer, which unnerved the young man who was doing his best to keep a forward moving plan.

The notion of being missed was not something Josh was used to, in actuality, he wasn't sure anyone ever genuinely missed him. Not that it mattered to Josh, he didn't need other people, but it was something new.

"You can see me when you like, I'm always here, or the Quidditch pitch." Josh told her, turning back to his work. "Where are you staying at the moment?" He continued, not looking back, it wasn't that he cared, per se. It was more that he couldn't afford his potential future wife to be living in a hovel.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:53 pm

Had she said something wrong? She panicked for a moment then relaxed slightly. "I'll try and stop by more often..well as often as you'll tolerate." She added, grinning a little while teasing him. "I'm renting a room in Hogsmead but I don't have to pay for it while I'm here. It's nice enough. I wouldn't know what to do with anything bigger than that." Which was true, the only complaint she had would just be the noise that sometimes got a bit much, especially during weekends when people tended to drink later and get rowdier.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sat Oct 25, 2014 7:05 am

"I'll try and stop by more often..well as often as you'll tolerate."

Josh simply nodded at her words, continuing to write his homework. "You can study in here if you like, Tess is never really here anyway." Josh explained to the witch. He didn't mind so long as she wasn't being annoying. But then, it was Louise Grey, she was annoying without meaning to be most of the time.

The information that she was renting in Hogsmeade made Josh look over at the witch. "How are you paying for it?" Josh asked uncertainly, as far as he was aware she didn't have income of any kind. And he really doubted Desmond would allow her any funds.

"You know you can come to the Manor at any time, should you need to, right, Grey?" Josh asked, because no matter what his mother said, he was going to get his own way. "And, I'll send for a House Elf for you in the mean time, you don't need to be doing servants work." Josh added.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Mon Oct 27, 2014 3:03 pm

She smiled and gladly took her notebook from her bag along with the text she'd been meaning to read for charms. She'd just found the page when he asked how she was paying for her rented room. "A little hard work never harmed anyone. I like my room and I like where I work during the holidays. I don't think it would be a good idea for me to just show up at the manor so I'll pass. But thank you for the offer."

With that she set to reading the chapter and jotting down notes. After some time she'd removed her shoes and curled up into the corner of the sofa with the book in her lap and the notepad on the arm. Switching between turning pages and jotting things down or doodling in the margins while reading intensely. It was surprisingly easy to focus with no noise and with a lot of weight off her mind.

The young Slytherin occasionally glanced Josh's way when she'd come to the end of a page, or finished writing something important.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:18 pm

"No, but servants work is for servants, and you're not a servant." Josh responded to her words, though he didn't press her coming to the manor, Josh had always liked his space, and with the world opening up to him this summer, there was going to be a lot of planning and work to do in the holidays.

A surprising silence fell in the room, there wasn't usually much silence when you were with Louise, but it was enough for him to get on with his work. Josh was back in to his essay, happy not acknowledging the witch for some time.

However, even that didn't last long as Josh felt the witch's eyes moving back and forth to him time and time again. "Grey, if you want something, spit it out, otherwise stop ogling me." Josh told her, quite clearly not impressed with her antics, but not angry either.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Fri Oct 31, 2014 6:15 am

It shouldn't have surprised her that she'd been caught but her cheeks went bright pink all the same. Now everything she wanted to ask flew out of her head like confetti in a breeze. Not that she had been thinking of things to ask but still, even the vague curiosity left. "Well...I've been thinking, we didn't really get to finish our dance. At the ball." Where are you going with this? She asked herself but the words were just coming out anyway and there was nothing she could do about it. "It's probably silly, and I can already hear a no but would you like to dance?" Something pulsed hard but she couldn't tell if it was her head or her chest that clenched harder at what she just asked. I really am in the wrong house here, she thought.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Nov 02, 2014 6:52 am

"Well...I've been thinking, we didn't really get to finish our dance. At the ball."

Josh couldn't help the small frown that touched his features at her words. Why was that even relevant now? Josh had absolutely no idea. They hadn't finished their dance though, she was right about that, because... the Black Widows had interrupted and made everything much more difficult than it had to be.

"It's probably silly, and I can already hear a no but would you like to dance?"

"Okay." Josh replied, not leaving much of a gap. The Head Common Room boasted a record player, so Josh moved over to it, putting on whatever record it was and turning back to Louise. There was enough of a space over here to do a small dance, nothing complicated, but Josh doubted she would be able to, especially now. Holding out his hand for her to come and join him, Josh listened to the old record, it was slow, not overly difficult rhythm, probably for the best right now.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sat Nov 08, 2014 5:57 pm

Dammit, she hated when he frowned, that usually meant she wasn't going to like what happened next. However when he said okay and went to put on music she took a moment to realise he'd agreed then left the sofa as swiftly and with the most dignity she could manage. She took his hand and grinned up at him, well not too much up, she had grown an inch or so over the summer. While they mentally counted themselves in and began to step in time, (doing so without shoes made things a lot easier) Louise watched his eyes and expression trying to find anything in there that hinted to what he was thinking. Her heart was strumming much faster than the music but not so hard as it usually would being this close to Josh.

For the first time in a long time things felt right, not only right but the world felt like it had shrunk down to the small space they were in, leaving the rest of the world a void. She smiled more gently then placed her head on the older Slytherin's chest while they took a turn. Probably a very ballsy move for her but she wanted nothing more than to be right here right now. Everything ticked and her heart almost stopped for a nanosecond, hitching her breath and slamming into her like a rampaging hippogryph. She was in love with Josh.

As the song came to an end she pulled back to look up at him again, hoping she'd schooled her features into an appropriate smile, and reluctantly stepped away. "Thank you."

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Nov 09, 2014 3:40 am

As he'd taken up the hold, he'd noted that it felt a little odd dancing without a hand gently resting on his shoulder. But Josh didn't mention it, it was simply one of those things that could be brushed aside, perhaps even righted one day, but even Josh knew that talking about such things was delicate, and he could wait. Time and a place theory denoted that this was neither.

Josh's face was, as ever, devoid of anything, his eyes had accordingly found a point behind the witch that he'd been taught to find from years of training. That, however, didn't stop him from acknowledging the fact that Louise was once again watching him. His eyes met hers a moment later, an eyebrow cocking in question to what was captivating her so much. But it wasn't spoken.

But no answer came, instead Louise rested her head on his chest and Josh frowned a little. This was not standard practice, this was... well, unorthodox to say the least. However, Josh said nothing, all the witch wanted to do was dance, it couldn't hurt, could it? Their closeness gave away the hitched breath from the younger Slytherin, however, and a small look of confusion touched Josh's lips as he looked down at the witch. She seemed to be okay...

Still no words came from Josh as he mulled the situation over, barely registering the end of the song until Louise pulled away from him, thanking him for dancing with her. Formalities, well, he supposed Louise had to start sometime...

"Grey, are you okay?" Josh asked, his expression turning somewhat confused. Everything felt... well, a little off now he thought about it, but he couldn't quite place what that was. But, perhaps Louise could, for once, answer something he couldn't. Maybe.
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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Fri Nov 14, 2014 1:27 am

Was she? "I'm.." No no don't you dare say it out loud Grey! She caught herself and forced a smile, well it wasn't truly forced, she still felt like smiling, despite everything. The world just suddenly felt a little brighter. "I'm fine." Good she didn't sound like a babbling idiot. "I'd better go, I'll stop by again sometime. When's best for you?" She asked while picking up her things and stuffing them into her satchel and slinging it over her shoulder. She waited just long enough to hear an answer and only half paying it any attention while her thoughts ran wild with her. Most of a soppy romantic nature that would probably earn her a scathing look. She nodded and left pretty quickly, not quite running but it may as well have been.

Professor squeaked indignantly from his perch on top of the curtains and scampered down but the door had closed before he could reach his mistress. His fluffy tail deflated and he looked back at Josh with the best vexed expression ever pulled off by a squirrel. He cocked his head as if demanding the boy let him out.

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PostSubject: Re: What now? (Josh)   Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:02 am

Josh frowned as she said she was fine. To him, she didn't look fine... Well, there was no point trying to force her in to talking, that probably wasn't going to get either of them anywhere. No, instead, Josh simply listened to her next sentence.

"I'd better go, I'll stop by again sometime. When's best for you?"

"Any day except training nights, really." Josh replied, still confused as she packed her bag. As soon as he'd answered, however, she was gone, and Josh... really didn't understand what had happened. Ready to turn back to his work - he'd never been one for running after people - Josh noticed she'd left her rat behind. Which was looking at him as if this was anything to do with him.

Moving to the door, Josh let the thing out and then moved back to his desk. Josh Murray was oblivious to what was going on in Louise's head, and it was probably best it kept that way too.
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