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 Plague Rats, Terry <3
Tine · 15 · 5th · AEGIS · Muggleborn · 5'8
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Mar 1 2018, 07:25 AM   Link Quote
The moment Oberon’s unlaced converse collided with the puddle of molten snow, the Gryffindor was full of regret, cursing loudly while somehow hopping down those three stairs towards the courtyard on one foot only, arms spread out like wings and Queenie’s claws digging into the fabric of his shirt, close to his neck. That was it, the worst feeling in this world: ice-cold water soaking through the cracked soles of shoes his mother had asked him to throw out way before winter, before slowly moving forward to his socks with the Donald Duck pattern and touching his skin. Was that how a dementor attack felt? Probably, and he was wondering about the mental image of his soul being sucked out of his body through his toes for a moment. Kinky. He needed to stop, right now. Somehow - through good karma and endless luck - the boy landed on both his feet, shaking the soaked one slightly with an expression of utter disgust on his face. Then he reached out to adjust his pet rat’s position again, ignoring the anxious squeaking. He was a man on a mission, and no puddle was going to stop him now.

Above the towers of Hogwarts, the air had finally cleaned and the temperatures were slowly climbing higher again; the former winter wonderland melting into a moist mess that seemed to soak through the ancient walls and through every piece of clothing Oberon was putting on. What had ridden him to let this meeting take place at the courtyard, he didn’t know - but he rarely thought such things through, therefore there was no time or justification for regrets. For once he was on time, glancing at the sky for a while and watching an owl disappear in the tower that held the owlery for a moment. He had never wanted a pet owl, because you just couldn’t do anything with them - they were no fun, unlike the ones he often saw in youtube videos. Too bad that his phone didn’t work at Hogwarts anyway, so why bother with it? A rat was much cooler - it was easy to carry around and kept people at a distance if he wanted them to, as rodents still suffered the burden of too many prejudices.

Blame Emilie Autumn for calling her friends plague rats, given the plague and rats never walked hand in hand with a positive connotation. She should’ve known better.

There was the slightest tingle of excitement as Oberon crossed the courtyard and walked towards the fountain in the middle, water still not splashing down due to the chances of frost suddenly returning still being a given - at least that was why he thought fountains were switched off during winter, something that he had seen ever since as it was a normal thing in the normal world. Funny how some things just did not change whether one was a wizard or a muggle - and honestly, the boy didn’t want them to. He was comfortable moving in both worlds, but often enough he did not even bring his wand - just like now when he watched Queenie scutter down his sleeve and hop on the stone edge of the fountain, staring up at him with his beady eyes.

As Terrence wasn’t here yet, the dark-haired boy followed his rat onto the edge - climbing onto one of the benches first and then moving upwards, carefully avoiding remaining patches of ice that might made him trip and fall. With every step, Beron could feel his wet sock clinging more to his skin, pulling an even more disgusted face as he started his little balance act, with the early spring breeze viciously ruffling his dark hair and blowing it in his face. Nails with chipped off black polish wiped them out of his eyes again, an act that almost made him fall over in the process before catching himself. Falling into the empty fountain wasn’t on his to-do list today, after all.

@Terrence Bartlett
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Mar 1 2018, 12:25 PM   Link Quote
Terrence was usually on time for everything, be it an event, a class, or a simple get together. However, this time was one of those times when he was late. The time excluded from the word usually. The eagle had intended to come to the courtyard an hour beforehand, but at that day an owl had sent him a letter. He'd read the piece of parchment over and over only to realize that he forgot about his meeting with Oberon. It was foolish to dwell on a letter for so long, but it was the first letter he'd received ever since he came to Hogwarts. After all those weeks writing home via different owl every day. He thought that maybe his father and mother were just busy, his hopes were high when the feathered friend came with a letter on its beak. Only when he'd opened the correspondence that he realized it was neither from his mother or father, but from his younger twin. It was unexpected.

Terry,

I passed the University Exams, so I'll be attending law school next year. I read your letters, you're graduating this year too, right? I hope you're doing well. Please come home soon. I don't want to fight anymore.

Regards,
Trav


The Ravenclaw finally snapped out of his trance and chucked the letter into his satchel. The piece of paper wedged in between the Sleeping Beauty shirt and the bag of cookies that sat just beside it. Hurriedly, Terrence began to tread hastily towards his destination. His heart pumped faster as he'd realized he'd be meeting a new friend. After two years of being a loner, he'd finally put himself out there even if it was by coincidence. With eyes forward, Terrence focused on his meet up with Oberon.

As soon as he arrived the snow outside was slowly melted, a sign that spring was drawing near. Beyond the puddles and still formed snow was his friend, a dark-haired boy atop the fountains. To Terrence, Oberon seemed happy as he created a rendition of a trapeze act. Oberon was precious, he thought. The strawberry blonde boy covered his face to conceal his laughter. The childlike actions that Oberon took were a stark contrast to Terrence's lifestyle. The boy had to be mature to impress his parents. Responsible, smart, and a top student, that's what he had to be. And frankly, he thought that maybe it wasn't enough since he was never told to come home yet. Well not by his parents. They were the law.

The wizard's finger's brushed his nose during his attempt to hide his giggles. Terrence realized that he wasn't wearing his piercings. The boy frantically dipped his free hand in his jacket's pocket to reveal two onyx studs and a nose ring which he promptly placed on each ear and his left nostril consecutively. Now he was ready. His left hand shot up and waved, a smile graced his face, and he began to try and catch his friend's attention, "Oberon! I'm here!"

~~~
@Oberon Austen
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Tine · 15 · 5th · AEGIS · Muggleborn · 5'8
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Mar 2 2018, 02:00 PM   Link Quote
If there were any advantages of hanging with Oberon Austen, it was clearly the fact he wasn’t wearing a watch and would therefore never know if his date was on time or not. He was also very easily distracted by his own doings - such as dangerous balance acts on the rim of the fountain with Queenie as his animal sidekick. All the big heros had a cool animal after all - just look at Pocahontas and her badass raccoon. He had always wanted to be a Disney princess; there was a reason why he owned at least three of the princess dresses - all carefully stored away in his trunk and only taken out for special occasions like carnivals of all kinds, Halloween or just your regular Monday that needed a bit of extra spice. There was Elsa - the secret lgbt+ queen of Disney - Aurora and Snow White, because he definitely had the hair for the latter. And anyway, Queenie had quite the sidekick material, given that a fucking rat was the protagonist of Ratatouille, right?

It had to be said that Oberon’s thought process was never the most elaborate, his mind hopping from one topic to another without much care for consistency.

Forgetting about the time was easy when one was entertaining oneself, and the dark-haired lion almost missed Terrence’s arrival at the courtyard. Having a short attention span was not always good - in fact, it was rather bad and often reflected on the boy’s grades when he did not manage to finish an exam on time because he had been staring out of the window. Only when the Ravenclaw’s voice cut through the silence of the courtyard - if one ignored the chirping of birds and the rustling of the wind in the trees - he froze in his movements, looking up and almost losing balance once more before he caught himself, waving back at Terrence. “Hi, I’ve been waiting 83 years or something,” he called out cheerfully, his voice echoing over the courtyard for a moment before he turned around, his back towards the fountain and taking aim to jump off.

His shoes - the one still soaked - somehow landed safely on the ground, gravel crunching under his soles as he swayed for a second before regaining balance. Queenie was grabbed from the edge of the fountain and put back on his shoulder before he approached the other boy with a wide smile on his lips - a smile that only widened as he was close enough to see the piercings Terrence had spoken of when they had first met, and how he wasn’t wearing them. Now he was, and it made Oberon mighty proud - illusional enough to think that maybe, it had something to do with meeting him. They had agreed to becoming friends, and apparently Terrence was taking everything he said or did very serious. “How’s your nose doing?” he hummed, before he reached out for the eagle’s chin, tilting it a bit to get a closer look at the piercing.

Unlike the older boy, Beron had no sense of personal boundaries and felt no hesitation towards touching others. He did not wonder at the way his black fingernails clashed against the boy’s skin until he let go again, smiling at him. “Looks great, you should always keep them in. The looks suit you,” he added with a smile before shoving his hands back in his pocket, his whole posture relaxing again now that his friend was here.

@Terrence Bartlett

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Mar 5 2018, 11:41 AM   Link Quote
Terrence's common sense wasn't nonexistent. It was slow, yes, nonexistent, no. The eagle's brow raised at his lion friend's over the top response to how late he was, he grinned to the reaction and replied with, "I would have let you waited longer if I knew you were practicing how to walk like a princess." He remembered this feeling. The feeling of having friends around who distracted him from thinking about his challenges and ambitions to be better. Like a small hole on a canvass that gave a glimpse of bliss behind the off-putting painting of reality. As to his thoughts repeated that Oberon was indeed precious. So cheerful that Terrence dreaded to see the smile on his new friend's face fade into a frown. And as his habits began to manifest, his mind made a personal vow to protect it. It was a challenge, but it was an unspoken oath for a friend.

As his friend came closer and apparently happier at the sight of him, he knew that Oberon must have noticed the piercings he had on. Terrence tried his best to conceal a bit of his happiness with his decision of putting them on for the boy. Cheeks slowly flushed in a pink shade as he felt his face's temperature grow warmer than his charmed clothing. The cold residual winter air that spring was shoving out lightly patted his face but failed to cool it down. Oberon's hand helping little to the situation as Terrence's face slowly blushed harder with his touch. Hands were intimate for him, not as intimate as arms in an embrace or partners locking lips, but it was at the edge. While Terrence found a distraction in the form of Oberon's rat.

"I see Queenie's here today. She hasn't wandered yet?" the Ravenclaw said slyly with a grin, attempting to lightly mock the Gryffindor's skills at handling his pet's wanderlust tendencies. "Oh, before I forget!" Terrence exclaimed as he remembered what he was there to meet Oberon for. The newly laundered Sleeping Beauty shirt and the packet of cookies in his back were revealed as he opened his satchel. His hands carefully dug into the bag to hand over both packages to the younger student. The older had forgotten about his letter which was stuck in between the two as it stuck out the sides. His eyes were too focused on his friend rather than what he was held to notice his mistake.

~~~
@Oberon Austen
Tine · 15 · 5th · AEGIS · Muggleborn · 5'8
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Mar 8 2018, 04:53 AM   Link Quote
With a constantly complaining big sister and a father who disapproved of most things the Austen twins could come up with, reckless tasks had soon become Oberon's form of rebellion - as if all those piercings were not enough. In a family of lawyers and doctors, every step taken away from the line was being frowned upon, and still he could barely care less. There was something about the rush of adrenaline in his veins that made thinking twice about whatever he might be up to unnecessary - and admittedly, he was enjoying every minute of it. Terrence's words made him snort, teeth flashing at the taller boy as he described the lion's doings on the edge of the fountain. "Please, I know how to walk like a princess without practice," he teased his new friend. It was true - walking in a dress was an art he had taught himself, but he felt like such revelations were too much to digest for Terrence just yet. Since their first meeting, Oberon perceived this boy as very easily startled by the smallest of changes in his routines.

It had to be sad that Beron really wasn't good at analysing people; often acting like the often cited elephant in the porcelain store when it came to other people's moods and feelings. This exact behaviour had gotten him punched in the past, for example when loudly singing songs from The Beauty and the Beast in his dorm, which had ended with a fencing foil being pointed at him by Nechtan McMahon. Life was full of adventures, as it seemed - especially when one had such a provoking personality as Oberon Austen. When he noticed the blush appearing on Terrence's face as he approached, he did not comment on it. People usually didn't blush around him, but maybe the eagle had just developed a sudden fever - he wasn't going to randomly assume things about his new friend here. Still he removed his hand from the boy's chin again, petting his heated cheek for a moment before pulling away.

"Him. Remember, Queen before King, right," he casually corrected Terrence without any reprimanding edge in his words. He was bobbing up and down on the heels of his shoes, wiggling his brows at the other boy. "He doesn't always wander, maybe he just wanted to meet you again," Oberon grinned, raising his shoulder and making the rat squeak at the sudden movement. He tilted his head, messy dark strands falling into his face at the other's sudden exclamation. Green eyes watched as his shirt and a package of cookies were retrieved, and a smile appeared on his lips as he realised Terrence had kept his promise of more cookies. "Oh man, you didn't have to!" he said, but his expression was definitely grateful. "You got a moment? We should share them, at least it's kinda nice outside."

It was possible that the older boy had different plans, but Beron was already marching off towards the bench, dropping his butt on the wood and placing the shirt beside him before he reached for the cookies. In that moment, the letter that had been hidden in between both items fell down, straight into the boy's lap who paused before picking it up and unfolding it without much hesitation. "Aw did you write me a love letter that early", he joked, eyes skimming over the words before he noticed that this had definitely not been meant for his eyes. Quickly he folded the letter again and held it towards Terrence, a small frown appearing on his forehead. "Uhm, sorry. Didn't mean to invade your, uh, correspondence like that..."

@Terrence Bartlett

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Mar 13 2018, 05:33 AM   Link Quote
"Now that is going to take some getting used to, Queenie," Terrence said as he faced the rat who had the most confusing name he'd ever had the chance to come across. "I'm glad he does then, 'cause people often think I hate pets. Just because I lack one." The raven wanted to have a pet, although, it was hard to find something that didn't distract him every few minutes. A rat would always need to have full attention, else they'd scutter away while you weren't looking. Proof of it was in front of him. A toad was the same, albeit harder to catch, and slippery at that. A cat or an owl was viable. Terrence had his mind wander with another short distraction of what to pick as a pet, only to be caught off-guard by Oberon's statement about writing a love letter.

"Fuck!" The curse came out as more of a startled exclamation more than an angry one. Terrence scrambled to take the letter off Oberon's hands, and his face was thrown in for another deep red shade. "N-no, it's okay. It's not something important."

Terrence looked away from his new friend, another bad impression of him was thrown out into the open. He thought that maybe he was cursed, after all, that the world was conspiring against his downfall. The Ravenclaw looked down at the letter in his hands and crumpled it before he shoved it back into his satchel. Reddened face still heated from all the blood that had rushed onto it. "It's not like I didn't expect it. It's not like anything's changed." Of course, Travis was still the better son. The raven sat beside the younger lion and slumped, his hands on his face as it tried to hide his embarrassment. "It's nothing to worry about or apologize for, I was careless."

It had dawned in his head, Travis was going to law school. As expected from the better twin. While Terrence would graduate and he didn't even know what kind of wizard job he wanted to strive for. Maybe an Auror or a Curse-breaker, both were high ranking jobs. He frowned.

"Maybe I should go home after I graduate..." he said in a soft tone, it was sad and confused. As if he did not want to, but he had to say it. "After the school's done, I don't really know what to do with my life afterward. It's kind of sad, because we'll only be friends for a year, and I might disappear after that. I kind of..." Terrence paused, heaved in a deep breath in order to keep his composure. Hands still hiding his face.

"... don't want to go home."

~~~
@Oberon Austen
Tine · 15 · 5th · AEGIS · Muggleborn · 5'8
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Mar 17 2018, 03:41 PM   Link Quote
Somehow, it had never occured to Oberon that Queenie was a confusing name. Maybe because he had grown up in the wonderful world of tumblr, twitter and facebook and had become immune to the question of gender, leaving it to his rat to identify as a real queen if he wished to or not. But still it made him laugh as Terrence was talking to his pet - the pet that had caused their first encounter after all. “Hey, I don’t have a dinosaur, but that doesn’t mean I hate them, either. Or pandas. Man, I fucking love pandas, too bad you can’t keep them as a pet,” Beron mused loudly during his attempts of underlining the older boy’s argument. People were shit, that wasn’t exactly news to either of them, he assumed. Wizards and witches were unfortunately no less shit than anyone else, as they had their own kind of stupid elitism and stuff like that. Honestly, Beron found it rather ridiculous people bothered with the purity of their blood when they could make things fly and explode with a flick of their wand. It was a waste of time and potential right here.

Although it was only their second encounter, the lion had already figured out that his new friend did not swear often - and if he did, it always came out strained, as if he was trying to keep himself from saying a bad word. It was kind of adorable and always charmed a small smile on Oberon’s lips. Well, right now it didn’t because the letter seemed to be something private and important, and they really hadn’t spent nearly enough time together for the dark-haired boy to dive headfirst into his most intimate secrets after all. So far, he had realised that Terrence and his twin had a bad relationship - and the name underneath the letter was what he had caught, Travis, while the actual content stayed veiled in mystery. It was fine, really - if Oberon could read faster, he would have known, but he assumed it was for the better in the end.

If the blush on the eagle’s face was any indication, it might as well have been a love letter, but the treatment of the piece of paper together with the expression on Terrence’s face and the facts at hand did not match. Oberon was nibbling on his own lower lip for a moment, wondering how to proceed. It felt like Terrence did not mean sharing the issue, but was it really in his place to offer? Fingernails with chipped off paint reached for the cookie package, unwrapping it carefully and offering one of the cookies to his friend. “It’s okay,” he muttered, his free hand patting the boy’s arm awkwardly. He hadn’t been prepared for such a moodswing, maybe he should sing to Terrence? Or would that be too forward? No, first he was going to let him talk calmly.

“Hey...hey, it’s fine. No one said that we can’t stay friends just because you graduate, you know. There are owls...and cellphones...okay, they don’t work here, to be fair.” Oberon swallowed, ruffling his hair and changing his posture so he was kneeling, reaching out to grab Terrence’s shoulders, squeezing lightly. “If you don’t want to, don’t go. You’re a wizard, Terry - you can go everywhere you want, and you still have a year to figure out what to do. You know, I wanna be a rockstar. You can be my roadie, come on tour with me.” He winked, hesitating for a moment before pulling Terrence in another hug. Queenie hopped from his shoulder in the process to disappear in the cookie package, but the lion did not care.

@Terrence Bartlett

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Mar 27 2018, 01:29 AM   Link Quote
There was a certain calmness that exuded off Oberon's words. A type of calmness that Terrence hadn't felt in a very long time. Even if the feeling of having a friend was familiar it still felt different, maybe because to Terry, Oberon was still a new friend, or maybe it was because of how Oberon found fun and sunshine in everything he did, and every word he spoke. It was refreshing. Oberon reminded Terry of his brother Travis, his cheery smile that infected those around him. It came to be that the eagle, too, was infected.

The Ravenclaw shot a small smile. A smile he was comfortable enough to show to another person. Something genuine, albeit minuscule. "I'd love that," Terry said as his nerves calmed from the tense air that surrounded him for a few moments. If his friend wasn't here, he might have spent that day in his dorm sulking it away as he normally did, or possibly pushed his nose into a book further than before. A way to drown out all the outside distractions as he could. His lion friend was a breath of fresh air. "I didn't think you played or sang, I'm not a very good judge of character." He really wasn't, blind faith fuelled the wizard more than good sense. One of the reasons why he hadn't caught up to the fact that his parents did not want him home. That he had thought maybe the lack of letters was because they were working hard to get their sons get the best education. Especially when Travis was aiming for Law School. Something Terry couldn't fulfill.

"You should play me a song sometime." Terry chuckled quietly. he too had his fair share of playing instruments. He'd once broken a guitar during a fight with his identical twin. A competitive spirit in Terrence often drove him to do things or bite off more than he could chew much less swallow. That was more of stupidity on his side even when he claimed he was the smarter Bartlett. He loved a good challenge and stopped at nothing to complete it. That was one of the reasons why despite him going through NEWTs and OWLs he'd decided to participate in this year's Quidditch matches. After all, it was his last year. Terrence's feet lifted themselves up from the ground and onto the bench. Oberon's hug was warm, warmer than the covers of his bed while the warmth of the Ravenclaw's dorm room's fireplace which cycled around the walls. The boy shifted to face his capturer, his head then leaned in to rest on the lion's shoulders. Terry found himself taking in the smell of wet fur and milk cookies rubbed off on his friend's jacket by Queenie's tiny paws, along with how most girls think a boy should smell like. Though, there was a hint of oranges there for sure. Because Terry smelled more like a girl than the other - him and his strawberry scented clothing. It was nice.

~~~
@Oberon Austen
Tine · 15 · 5th · AEGIS · Muggleborn · 5'8
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Mar 27 2018, 06:40 AM   Link Quote
Calm was usually the last adjective people would assign to Oberon Austen - or any of the Austen brothers. They were loud and chaotic, often inches away from getting in serious trouble that was caused by utter stupidity and a very dangerous sense for being reckless. Maybe if there was a gallery of poster boy Gryffindors, they would at least be good for that. A boy could dream, and Beron's dream had always been to have his face printed on a poster after all. The dark-haired boy did not know what exactly he was doing right, but when Terrence smiled, it almost felt like a small victory; much like landing the football in the goals. He was not going to start with Quidditch metaphors because he didn't like that. Maybe Terrence just needed to go out some more and take a deep breath every now and then, it would do him some good - everyone knew that a lot of Ravenclaws were just studious nerds, which explained why so few of the boy's friends hailed from the house with the eagle crest.

"Oh no, I don't sing. I mean, I do sing. But not like that, you know?" Oberon shrugged, because there was a clear difference between being a one-man-show in the shower and feeling the desire to perform heartfelt ballads on a stage. "I'm a drummer!" he added after a moment, a wide grin splitting his face as if he had turned into the Cheshire Cat all of the sudden, ready to lure the innocent - in that case Terrence - into a dark forest. "But I can totally sing you a song if you want to. Any Disney song you name, I can sing it." Sometimes Beron was just a terrible fifteen-year-old who felt the need to boast whenever he could. Drums were the only instrument he had ever bothered with, as it was a perfect way to make a lot of noise.

Making noise came as naturally as giving a hug, and once Terry had placed his head on the younger boy's shoulder, he reached out and petted his hair that felt surprisingly fluffy, a small grin appearing on his lips. He did not see himself as someone who was very good at comforting, but a good companion, that he could be - someone who gave awesome hugs while smelling nice. Now he remembered the mention of strawberry detergent, leaning in and sniffing a little. It was true, the scent reminded him of the strawberry cake his mother always made when the fruits were in season, glaced with sugarcoating and all red and shiny. For a second, he wondered if the boy would taste like strawberries too, a typical error moment of his brain - as per usual.

So that was how one of his spring days went, drenched in the scents of strawberries and cookies, and with the warmth of another body pressed against Oberon's side. In a way, he had missed that, though admitting it had never come to his mind as he leaned his head against Terrence's, strands of such opposite colouring mingling gently in the movement. He could get used to that, kind of.

@Terrence Bartlett

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