Meeting of minds, tangle of egos
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Meeting of minds, tangle of egos Li9olo10

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Meeting of minds, tangle of egos

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Post by Caleb Flint Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:01 am

"He's an actual nightmare."

"He sounds like he's at least interested in the work. The intern they gave me sits in a chair all day drawing on her arm."

"He's sexist! And a prat."

Camila had been relatively silent as her partners spoke, picking at her salad in the Ministry cafeteria, but her brother was watching her carefully, his feet propped up on the end of the table, a bit set apart from the diplomats who had always viewed Aurors like loose cannons - and he liked to keep them thinking that. He could see the strain in her wrist revealing her own tension in regards to their newest intern, but knew she was too professional to really indulge. This last comment seemed to inspire something within her though, as the Belgium diplomat, a freckled woman named Karen glared at the only Hitchens Advocate at the table, the almost cliched diplomat to Canada, Lars.

"Oh, come on, he's not sexist."

"He certainly listens to you and Sam more than he does to me."

"Ever think that maybe we're just bett-"

"Shut up, Lars, he does it to Camila too. He's sexist."

Camila cleared her throat. "Not sure you could boil down his superiority complex to sexism alone."

Caleb tilted his head in curiosity as both diplomats turned to look at his twin, who was back to popping her fork into her mouth. Caleb smirked, eyes rolling from them to Camila. "You almost sound impressed." Her eyes rolled to his and he could almost hear her voice in his head saying I am most assuredly not.

Lars cleared his throat, trying to change the subject. "Do you have Auror interns, Caleb?"

Caleb shrugged. "How would I know that?"

He popped a grape in his mouth and could feel Camila's eyes rolling next to him while Lars struggled to understand how to take this. But Karen was stiffening. "Oh, Merlin."

"What?" Lars asked.

"Incoming," Karen sighed, reaching for her organic vegan kale juice, or whatever monstrosity she was insisting on drinking.
Caleb Flint
Caleb Flint
Slytherin Graduate
Slytherin Graduate

Number of posts : 93
Occupation : Auror

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Post by Pavo E. Hitchens Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:29 am

The Howler arrived in the middle of breakfast.

What it said wasn’t important, only the sentiment it carried. But even that, had you asked a certain wayward Hitchens, was of no significance. Given that he was the hapless recipient of this missive, you might be inclined to take him at his word.

Do not make the mistake of doing so.


Maximus Antores Hitchens was far too old to be chasing down misbehaving grandchildren. Infact, while his semi-retirement to the South of France/Northern America/Central Bulgaria was in large part the natural order of his transitory lifestyle, it was also in part an attempt at distance from the frustrations and obligations he'd never shirked, a lifelong iron grip on authority and responsibility from which he'd never considered he'd need relief.

Even now, sat at his writing desk two continents away, he felt the keen awareness of the enforcement of basic discipline still falling squarely and consistently on his ageing shoulders.

(Not by wizarding standards, perhaps, but those who understood there were other ways of measuring years would recognise the weariness in the steady grey gaze, the wariness in the unflinching air. Unbowed and unbent by life’s misfortunes, perhaps, but not unbroken.*)

The fact of the matter was, he’d had quite enough of Vela and Delphinus’ son.

Only they, it seemed, actually believed that this ambitious but belated attempt at world education would have any effect on the pig-headed boy. In fact, they’d been convinced of it. Their decision had been delivered with proud determination, clueless optimism- of the sort that Maximus had never been a party to in some eighty years of life.

This profession, they said, was in the blood. And the generations heavy pull would overpower any youthful ignorance borne of bad company or misplaced ambition. Hadn’t it been Maximus himself's suggestion a few odd years ago?

Well, if you asked a humble old man his part- something else ran in Pavo’s blood, and it wasn’t diplomacy.

Far be it from Maximus to dash the rose-tinted parental hopes and dreams of his son and daughter-in-law. Far be it from him to scorn the attempt at parenting he’d long awaited. Far be it from him to deny the merits of reason and discussion and gentle guidance.

But he’d talked for years, reasoned, disproved, reprimanded, and mocked, and he was an old man now, and with the impatience of both his nature and age he’d come to realize one thing:

There was no reasoning with a fool.

With Pavo, with the black sheep, with his grandson- only force.

He sent the Howler.

Too little too late.


The Howler simply said:


It bellowed it, the cold, calm command amplified to an imperious, glass-rattling rumble. The old man did it on purpose, Pavo was sure, knowing the way the deep, severe voice burrowed into his head and buried itself in his bones till his skin itched. Even without the identical grey gaze, the familiar slash of cheekbones, this proof of relation disgusted him, infuriated him, reminded him with nauseating starkness just where he came from and where he was, and just how far that was from where he wanted- where he deserved- to be.

Even the crimson was a glaring imposition, bright in the coolness of the late summer morning, a wound that shouldn’t be prodded.

His grandfather just kept prodding.

With a dry rustle the missive ate itself, ashes scattering unceremoniously onto his plate, and, on a gust of sudden wind, into his face.

2 spaces across and 3 seats along his sister calmly paged through her morning paper, unruffled and unconcerned. A breeze teased the curtains of the window she’d insisted on having open.

The Howler did in part have the intended effect for it curdled his appetite and ejected him out of the room, and not much later, out of the house, into the floo, and headed to the most tiresome department in the Ministry, only to find it as empty as his stomach.

Pavo detested all things pedestrian, and food was no exception. He liked his greens rare and his meats endangered and the meals themselves difficult to source and complicated to prepare. One of his more irrelevant siblings had once commented that his taste in food was the only exotic thing about him. He detested the packaged, mass-produced assembly line the Ministry passed for a cafeteria.

On this occasion, however, he judged that nothing could make the lingering taste of that Howler any bitterer. He judged also that his premature arrival had allowed a necessary detour en route International Magical Cooperation- but fate, it seemed, had not.

That sour-faced woman- the self-righteous Belgian with a bad complexion- had spotted him and was undoubtedly preparing the spiel she’d subject him to once he neglected to display the respect she seemed to think herself deserving of.

Pavo met her gaze and prepared to ignore her- and the rest of them- entirely, barely bothering to look at the rest of the committee. Flint gave him pause, but what adjusted his intention was the new addition, the clearly-not-a-diploprat, the lone wolf at the end of the table.

He unhurriedly approached their little convention, forgoing sustenance in favour of strategy. And only once he'd reached the table, taking the roundabout route so he converged on them from behind the sour-faced one and managed to tower over her, did he offer the customary greeting.

“What a daring approach to diplomacy. Frittering away the morning while the world awaits saving.”

The impassivity didn’t even attempt to disguise the sarcasm. But the delivery- cool, clipped, confident- was just the right shade of colorless to toe the line of offence, hovering between thinly-veiled disinterest and more carefully veiled scorn.

Which had, incidentally, been the defining theme of his approach to this useless internship.

As well as, in fact, frittering away not only the morning but all times of the day robotically doing the bare minimum.

After all, who cared about saving the world when it was there for the taking?

[*credit where credit is due]
Pavo E. Hitchens
Pavo E. Hitchens
Seventh Year Slytherin
Seventh Year Slytherin

Number of posts : 72
Occupation : Leader of the Dark Followers

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Post by Caleb Flint Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:06 am

If they weren't diplomats, or perhaps if they considered the Hitchens boy to be on their level, Karen would have picked up their lunches and left. Kip could see it in the ghost of petty schoolyard past, the brief meeting of eyes with Camila and the tightening of her lips. Camila might have left too, though her reasons were less based in irritation and more in preservation - her time was better spent than listening to Hitchens aggravate her colleagues. Lars sighed, unhappy to be involved in anything beyond talk of weather or casual office politics.

And Caleb was just here for the show.

Karen straightened up as Pavo's words threatened to undo all that self-importance she claimed to not have, looking warningly at Camila as though the brunette would do anything but lift her coffee to her lips. Karen turned her gaze to the student. "That must mean you finished all the filing."

Intern was the dirty insult she didn't tack on, revealing that truly horrible tendency to condescend that people who claimed to be for the people tended to have.

Caleb, however, was too interested in seeing how much he could wind up his sister to care.

"The world's been lost, kid, their job is all pretend."

Camila flicked her eyebrow up. "And what's your job, then, Mr Auror?"

He grinned. "Arrest the people that can't play it cool enough to keep the end of the civilized world a secret."
Caleb Flint
Caleb Flint
Slytherin Graduate
Slytherin Graduate

Number of posts : 93
Occupation : Auror

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