Floo Network

❄ Winter 69/70
there's still time to change the road you're on

Started by M. B. Montgomery, July 14, 2021, 01:49:37 pm

M. B. Montgomery

July 14, 2021, 01:49:37 pm Last Edit: July 21, 2021, 10:32:03 pm by Royal_Poet
Sid was having a bad day. In fact, it was yet another bad day in a series of bad days. He was sick and tired of them and frustrated that he just couldn't seem to catch a break. The world had started to fall into chaos ever since the beginning of term and now his personal life was following suit. The latest thing that had gone wrong as that he just couldn't find his niffler, Inaya. He'd taken her to the castle with him in the morning, not wanting to leave her alone at home for too long, except now she had gotten away. When?

He was standing near the room of requirement, thinking she might have found something shiny there, but there was no trace of her. Okay, it was probably time to backtrack his steps. He'd noticed Inaya was missing after teaching the 7th year Ravenclaw class on wandless defensive techniques. They'd had a satisfying practical session, barring one or two minor incidents. Well, if he was truthful, the Allerton boy tripping over his new, dark teal robes had been annoying, but, of course, that had nothing to do with Inaya. Had he even brought her to the classroom? He wasn't sure.

Rather uncharacteristically, he had let his guard down and not paid any attention. Between lessons his mind had been preoccupied with auror Rynne and his ongoing investigation into his family. How were Vanora and Callum even doing? Sid wanted to call them to find out, but he didn't know how to even approach it. Some things were just too awkward.

Focus. Before teaching the Ravenclaws he had been in the library. He walked back there and watched as librarian Pemberton waved at him in a friendly manner. She was wearing two golden barrettes in her hair today. Okay, that ruled out here. Inaya would have gone for Rose if she'd been around to see her hair clips. He waved back at the librarian.

Hm, what had he done before that? He'd been Albus in his office. Had Inaya been with him there? To his shame he still couldn't remember. He was reasonably confident though that the headmaster would have reminded him of taking Inaya with him if they had come in together. Which meant he had to have lost her earlier in the staff room. It was the only reasonable explanation. He hurried down the corridor towards it.

Stepping inside he was being greeted by silence. Hm, maybe this wasn't it either.

Quillan Cadwick

There were many drawbacks to looking the way he did. He frightened children, slowed down traffic, freaked people out without even trying and generally made every one uncomfortable just by being around. Animals however didn't seem to notice or care what he looked like, which is why he liked them a lot more than people. A dog for example didn't treat him differently and cats usually treated him like....well cats! Yes, animals were a lot better. They didn't care what he looked like as long as they were treated with kindness, which he always made sure to do.

Then.....he encountered a creature who very much DID care what he looked like. He was walking toward the staff room, usually he made a point to avoid it, but he'd run out of creamer for his coffee and decided to make some there and take it back to his office. He peered into the room and sure enough, it was empty. What he didn't know, was that for the past couple floors, he'd been followed by Inaya the Niffler. She'd been dozing in a corner, chewing on a nice shiny candy wrapper when she'd noticed Quillan limping by. She'd frozen in shock and watched him pass, unable to believe her eyes. A man. Made of gold! Shiny and pretty and oh-so-sparkly! She'd hurried after him, glad that he was slower than others, because she wasn't as young as she used to be, and running wasn't very easy anymore.

Quillan walked into the staff room and helped himself to the darkest roast coffee the school had on hand, along with some creamer and while he waited for the pot to brew, he sat down on one of the armchairs and leaned his head back, staring up at the ceiling and drumming his fingers idly. The niffler saw his (in her mind) pretty dusty golden hair cascading down the back of the sofa and crawled up the chair. Then, she hooked her claws into his hair and nibbled on it.

"OW!" Quillan shouted in alarm as several pounds of something suddenly jerked his head back and started working its way up! A little alarmed by it, he reached up and patted his head, surprised to find something warm and fluffy on top of his head! "What the hell?" He quickly got to his feet and hurried toward a magical toaster, using it as a makeshift mirror. He spotted the Niffler, "Hey! Get off my head!" He said and attempted to pull it off, but it just dug its claws into his skull and continued to lick his hair. "Off. Off. OFF!" the man snapped and tugged again, but it just hung on tightly and made cooing noises. "What's the matter with you? I'm not your personal chew toy!"

Nifflers liked shiny things..... he lifted his cane up higher and leaned against the counter, waving the head of his cane in front of the creature, "Look at this shiny pretty cane! It's much better than I am! You want it? Gotta let go to get it! See it? See the cane? You want the cane? Cane stupid!!! "

The Niffler considered it, still with a now very soggy lock of Quillan's hair in her mouth, then she snuggled her face into his head and began pawing at his scalp.

"Oh you are NOT making a nest right now!"

M. B. Montgomery

July 21, 2021, 10:49:29 pm #2 Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 07:41:32 am by Royal_Poet
Sid paused for a moment gathering his thoughts. Where had he been before entering the staff room this morning? This exercise was starting to get uncomfortable. He normally prided himself on his flawless memory, but right now he couldn't come up with much of anything. Sid was just about to give up and let Inaya come back to him when she was ready to, when he heard some ruckus at the other side of the room. Then he heard some grumbling in Professor Cadwick's Fife accent. Oh no, no, no, surely Inaya hadn't?! When had they even come in? He was sure that just a moment ago the room had been empty.

The scene that unfolded itself before his eyes as such a beautiful disaster it was hard to intervene. Instead of doing anything, Sid stood with his mouth agape while Cadwich was trying to teach Inaya how to play fetch with his cane. Momentarily, the niffler seemed to consider the idea, before burrowing into the professor's hair. That was it. Sid doubled over laughing, unable to contain himself even a moment longer. "Inaya," he tried to call inbetween giggles. "Come here Inaya, it's better you leave the poor professor alone. He won't fit into your pouch anyway."

Sid's words seemingly inspired the niffler, as it slid down from Quillan's head onto his shoulder. Inaya then crawled along the length of his arm. Arriving at his hand, she tried to stuff two of the professor's golden fingers into her pouch, causing Sid to burst into another round of laughter. "I'm so sorry," the Defense Against The Dark Arts professor managed at long last. "It appears to me you have just made a friend for life." He stepped closer to Professor Cadwick and stretched out his hand in front of Inaya. "Come on girl, you had your fun, now it's time to go home." The niffler gave Sid a stubborn and challenging little look. "Don't try my patience." Sid warned. 

The little creature seemed to sulkily acquiesce, letting go of Quillan and crawling over onto Sid's sleeve. "Are you alright?" he asked his new colleague. "I hope she didn't give you too much trouble. I promise she's normally more well behaved than this, but there seems to be something about you she just found irresistible. Can't think that that would be." Hopefully,  bit of humour would help professor Cadwick to come around and see the funny side of this.

Quillan Cadwick

What was wrong with this Niffler? He'd never- ......someone was laughing at him? He turned and stared in surprise at Professor Montgomery, wondering just how long he'd been there watching! Was it some form of entertainment for him? He might've yelled at him if the little creature wasn't coaxed out of his hair and down his arm, then started pulling on his fingers. He'd better watch out for this thing hadn't he? It seemed taken with him! Inaya was its name? Hm. He'd have called it 'Trouble.'

And it was female. That explained the pouch he supposed. To his great relief, the critter let go of him and went to her owner, but still eyed him as if he were the greatest thing since sliced bread. He tried to compose himself, conjuring up a comb, he started running it through his hair, attempting to preserve a little dignity. "I'm fine." He said, a little shortly. "She startled me." That and annoyed the crap out of him but.....she was only an animal and only doing what Nifflers did best. He did manage a small smile, which was the best Sid would be getting for the time being.

"......Must be difficult keeping her out of trouble. Being a Niffler and all. Don't they....burrow everywhere? And hoard anything shiny? Or anyone in my case." He added, another half smile. He did see the humor in it and she was cute but he wasn't going to try to pet her. It might break her little heart when Sid took her back to.... where ever it was she stayed during the day. Probably best to keep his distance. "I think it's safe to assume, that the next time she gets away from you, she'll try to find me. I'm usually in the dungeons.....might help in your search for next time." he wondered what would happen if they put a whole bunch of shiny, interesting objects the same room as him and he sat in his chair. Would Inaya go for him every single time? .....Why was he thinking of this? It wasn't like he was here to play games with Nifflers or anything.

M. B. Montgomery

July 25, 2021, 01:30:40 pm #4 Last Edit: July 25, 2021, 02:59:20 pm by Royal_Poet
Professor Cadwick struggled to find a small smile, and Sid figured Inaya had to have really made him quite uncomfortable. Well, not everybody was an animal person and nifflers in particular could be quite intense. Especially if you got inbetween a niffler and its treasure. He figured there was little to be done about it, other than try to apologise again and hope that Quillan would start feeling better sometime soon.

"My apologies for that again, Professor Cadwick. She's a bit of a handful, as you can see," Sid said and settled into one of the empty seats near him. "Anything golden and valuable will catch her eye. She doesn't get much action these days since we accepted the posting here at Hogwarts. We're both getting on a bit, and, oh you must know what it's like. You wake up in the morning and some joint hurts you didn't even know you had. We're trying to take it easy now," he looked at Inaya, "not sure which of us finds it harder, her or me."

Quillan seemed to be warming up to having a conversation, talking about where to usually find him in the castle. "The dungeons?" Sid raised an eyebrow and frowned. "They couldn't have gotten you a nicer workspace? How rude."  It always baffled him how anyone could work in those clammy and cold rooms downstairs. Even his office was far too chilly for his liking, and he's been through it a number of times hitting every possible crevice with a draft exclusion charm.

"We've not really talked much before, have we?" Sid commented. "How are you settling in at Hogwarts? Enjoying it? If you don't mind me being a bit curious, what did you do before working here at Hogwarts?"

Quillan Cadwick

"And I thought my cat could be a pest." Quillan said and started pouring coffee, deciding to make a cup for Sid as well since he was there too. If he took it, then fine. If not, he didn't care. He wouldn't be offended by any means. He set his cane to one side within easy reach and added a little cream and sugar to his coffee and counteract the bitterness and took a sip. "Well I'm certainly golden!" He remarked, 'valuable'....not so much. Of course, he didn't say that. No need to play the pity card. He hated the pity card. "You sleep funny and you wake up sore in places that ought not be sore." He remarked, "At least she gets an excuse to lie in bed all day. Folks like us are called 'lazy' or people assume we're 'too old to get up' if we have a little lie-in. With an animal it's cute and endearing to see them sleeping the day away."

He shrugged, "Yeah it's cold and damp and terrible on my leg in the winter, but it's easier than going up and down a million flights of stairs every day to get from place to place." He pointed out, indicating his bum leg. It was at an odd angle, the leg went on way, the foot went inward, almost pigeon toed in a way. "Same thing. Except I worked at Durmstrang. I'd been educated there as a lad. It's vastly different from this school I can tell you that much! They still allow corporal punishment there for example. When the new headmaster was hired, he took one look at me, assumed I was some sort of half-breed creature and fired me." he snorted and took a sip of his coffee. "Figured it wasn't worth arguing and proving I'm fully human to stay on at a place where the headmaster would hate me and try to drive me to quit, so when I saw an opening for a Professorship here, I jumped at the chance!" Or as much as he could jump....

"And I'm settling in fine. Getting used to the mistrustful glances from ...everyone. The frightened expressions of people who stare too long at me and the wonder in their eyes as they try to figure out what exactly happened to make me look like this. It's more or less the same as at my old position. I like the dungeons just fine. Less strain on my leg and I get the privacy I like. Not many people like it down there, so they rarely come by for a visit."