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 Searching For Answers (Naomi)

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PostSubject: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 5:59 pm

Humphrey was more than a little frustrated and worried about Brooklyn now, the last time he'd seen her had been in the hospital and now the new school year had started and she wasn't even there. Perhaps she had decided not to come back to Hogwarts, or she had decided to get away from her dad and hide somewhere. He couldn't stop the worry and fear that she could be dead from speaking up now and then, though. At this point he didn't care that much whether she wanted to be his girlfriend or not, he just wanted to know that the best friend he'd made at Hogwarts was safe. Was that so much to ask for?

So here he was, looking through the dungeons for either the entrance to the Slytherin common room, or one of the students to question about Brooklyn. Hopefully one of them had heard something, but he wasn't sure that even if they knew they would tell him. Slytherins weren't exactly on the best terms with most of the school, and even though some of it was probably unfair stereotyping, some students like Dakota had given the other students cause to be wary. His wand was still in his pocket, but he kept a hand on it just in case it was needed. Hearing footsteps, he whirled around to see who it was. "Hello?"
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:33 pm

"So, I was telling Jamie about the new designs coming out in October - did you see that beautiful furry coat in Witch Weekly Magazine that is supposed to be all the fashion this winter, that was my favourite - and he's already said he's going to get me a voucher for the shop in Hogsmeade so that I can get some new bits for my wardrobe." Naomi explained to the small group of Slytherin girls she was with.

Each of them looked at her in awe, Jamie was (quite frankly) someone they all swooned over because he had money and the looks to make most girls do so. Naomi wasn't overly fond of the idea, but it got her the attention she wanted, at quite a small cost.

"We'll all have to head down together, try things on!" Emily replied happily as they turned the corner. The few girls Naomi associated with in the Slytherin Common Room were not the stereotypical snobs and bullies, but they were still not the nicest of girls in the school. Naomi personally preferred the Ravenclaws, but from time to time, you had to suffer for the greater good.

They were nearing the common room when Naomi noticed a boy, a boy who was most certainly not in their house.

Giving a glance sideways, Naomi gave the boy a small smile - one that was not entirely forced, but not quite real either. "Are you lost? Or did you mean to come crawling in to the Snake's Den? I'd say we don't bite..." Naomi glanced around the other girls, before her smile grew a little more. "But, that wouldn't be technically true." She added. It wasn't meant in a sexual manner, Merlin knew Naomi's innocence was just about in tact at this age, it was more of a subtle hint that they would fight if they were provoked.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:48 pm

Humphrey gulped nervously when he saw an entire group of Slytherin girls, not just one, and the one who was obviously the leader started addressing him. Putting on a determined expression, he eyed the group warily in case one decided to draw a wand. "Definitely not lost, I was actually looking for some snakes to talk to. You see, I have a few questions about a close friend of mine." he explained, wondering if he should go ahead and give the name. First, he decided to see how they responded to his statement about the questions, wade in to test the waters a little bit at a time instead of diving headfirst.

When she made the comment about snakes biting his eyes narrowed in suspicion, but he merely nodded. "You don't need to warn me about snakes knowing how to bite, miss. This year in Diagon when I was helping my sister shop for an owl we had a run in with Dakota, a fellow Hufflepuff I know said some things to her and they very nearly started casting spells right int he middle of the shop. Thankfully, no harm was done, but I'm not some kid who's new to Hogwarts and doesn't know who to watch out for." Humphrey explained calmly, one hand hovering over the handle of his wand in case it was needed. "But, there's no need to fight without cause, yes?" he asked.

During his talk, he kept his eyes on the leader and only occasionally checked his peripheral vision to watch the other girls. It would have been obvious to even the dullest of students at Hogwarts that she was the one in this group to keep an eye on. To her credit, though, she hadn't started attacking him just because he was in the way or in her territory like some others of the Slytherin students might have. He was trying not to judge them all by Dakota's standards, after all Brooklyn had been rather nice, really. A bit sarcastic at times and cold, but a good person.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:59 pm

Naomi took in the explanation of the boy's appearance in the dungeons with a pinch of salt. The dungeons were, of course, the place of the snakes - yes the badgers liked to pretend they owned some of it, but, really, it was the Slytherins. "A friend?" Naomi asked, letting out a soft, girlish giggle that was echoed only a moment later by the others.

It all died away a moment later, and Naomi motioned the rest of the group to continue on to the common room without her. Once the steps had begun to fade, Naomi's eyes turned back to the boy who had taken a few moments of her time to blather on about Dakota.

All the Slytherins knew Dakota, of course, one of the many Slytherins who was not very nice. "I'm somewhat disgusted you'd think I'm the kind of girl who would take to foolish wand waving." Naomi replied after a moment, before motioning to the boy before her. "You can take your hand off your wand, honey, you won't get much use of it." The Slytherin witch insisted, pet names were much too much fun to make people squirm at the familiarity that was not actually there.

"So, does your friend have a name?"
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 7:11 pm

Looking straight into her eyes, and nodded the affirmative. "If you must know, I thought she was more than a friend at one point." Humphrey said, deciding to be honest about his reasons for seeking out snakes to talk to. He wasn't a good liar, and really saw nothing to gain from hiding what he was here about. She would find out if he tried, and then she wouldn't answer anything because she would most likely not trust him because of it. She'd probably make fun of him for seeking snakes to ask about another girl, but he could take that if he found out she was okay.

To his surprise, she motioned for the other girls to leave her and soon it was just the two of them. Humphrey was rather grateful it was just one now instead of a full group, but the girl did look kind of mad. Never a good sign when a girl looks angry at you. "I wasn't trying to compare you to her, merely pointing out that I know snakes know how to bite. You've actually been rather neutral towards me so far." he said, with a shrug. When she called him honey he gave her a glare, but took his hand away anyways. "You don't even know my first name as far as I know, so don't call me pet names." he told her. Not the smartest thing to order a Slytherin, but it made him uncomfortable when she talked like that.

"Brooklyn Rae, have you heard anything about her? Last I saw her was Christmas, and I'm...well, I'm worried about her, okay. If she doesn't want to talk to me fine, I just...want to know she's alright." he said, trying to keep the emotion from his voice but failing, a few tears welling up before he wiped them away with his hand.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 7:27 pm

More than a friend... well, that made Naomi's eyebrow raise a notch. A spurned love was always quite fun to watch - from the sidelines at least - so she was more than willing to play a little part in this in that moment. "I see." Was all that Naomi decided to reply until the others were gone.

"So far." Naomi echoed, leaving that comment there. She didn't want him to think her too nice, but Naomi also didn't want the boy before her running his mouth off around the school. Callum most certainly would have something to say if rumours started about her being mean to others.

"Well, if you don't tell me your name, then I have to call you honey." Naomi replied, before motioning to him. "So, if you'd prefer something else, honey, I would suggest that you tell me your name. Unless you'd prefer something like buttercup?" She added, her humour showing in that moment as she picked up another throw away pet name for the boy before her.

"Oh, you're that boy?" Naomi asked, amusement spiking on her lips. Naomi only knew of Brooklyn - they lived in close quarters after all - but that was as far as it went. Of course, the boy before her had no idea what she did or did not know. "You two were dating, right? Oh, I thought she'd told you she'd had enough? This is so sad!" Naomi continued, her tone being sympathetic despite the fact there was nothing to be sympathetic before. "She didn't want you to be her boyfriend anymore, buttercup, but she didn't know how to tell you. She's been back all year, but she's been keeping a very low profile.

"I would have thought you'd have realised this by now... She's a lone wolf." Naomi finished somberly, moving to pat the boy's shoulder. "I hope you have better luck next time, truly." She added, a smile brightening on her lips once more as her hand moved away.

"But, you're wasting your time being around here."
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 7:57 pm

To be honest, he wasn't sure what to make of that eyebrow raise. Was it disbelief that he could actually get a girlfriend, or something else? Humphrey really had no idea, and not being able to get a read on her was unsettling. He knew he wasn't the best, but he usually had some idea. "What exactly is it that you see?" he asked, wondering what she thought about him coming here to ask about a girl. Did she think it was too emotional or silly of him to come here asking about a girl? It wouldn't surprise him.

"You're a rather moody person, aren't you?" Humphrey asked, chuckling a little but starting to feel slightly more comfortable. One moment she seemed fairly nice, but then she'd say something and he'd wonder if she was annoyed with him. Although, it could be simply a girl thing that he didn't understand. There were a lot of those, even Casey confused him sometimes though thankfully she was pretty straightforward most of the time.

The name buttercup caused an audible groan to come out, and he shook his head rapidly no. Then he saw that she was teasing and he stuck his tongue out at her briefly before replying. "Fine, my name is Humphrey Stephen Williams. What's yours, nosy?" he asked, giving her a nickname of her own since she wanted to play that way. Humphrey had to appreciate the humor, even if it was at his expense.

As the Slytherin kept talking tears started welling up in his eyes, and this time he didn't try to hide them or brush them away, he just let it happen. Humphrey could live with her thinking him weak, hearing that Brooklyn couldn't even tell him herself and chose to hide was more painful than anything he'd imagined. The only consolation was that at least he knew she was safe now. "I thought she actually cared about me, I was there for her when she'd nearly died and...crap, this hurts." he said, sitting down and bringing his knees up to his chest before resting his chin on them. It was the best way to stop from shaking too much as tears continued to fall. "A-at least at least she's s-s-safe. Thank you for being honest with m-me, more than Brooklyn did." he told her, his voice stuttering at times as he tried to talk through the tears.

A minute or two later, and he was still crying a little but wasn't shaking as much as before. When he felt a hand on his shoulder he flinched hard, shying away. "Sorry, I just...don't like being touched by people I don't know. It's not you." Humphrey assured her, having gathered himself enough so he could talk without stuttering at least.

Smiling a little when she told him he was wasting his time around here, he shook his head. "Not a waste of time at all. I got closure, and...if you aren't opposed, perhaps a friend? Or, call it an acquaintance for now if not a friend." he suggested.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 8:15 pm

The question of what she saw was not answered by Naomi, she didn't have to answer to him at all. She would leave the boy before him simply guessing as to what she may or may not see in that moment, this way was much more fun than giving him straight answers. Let him think it out for himself.

"Moody? I think it's better than being rude." Naomi replied, because the boy before her had just been quite rude in his remark, and she was not going to let him get away with it, no sir!

The sticking out of the boy's tongue - Humphrey as she learned a few minutes later - was just as rude as his earlier comment. Thus making Naomi right, and more than a little smug with herself. "Humphrey, huh." She commented, not really sure on whether she liked his name in that moment. "I'm Naomi." The Slytherin witch replied to his question, he didn't need more information than that in the moment, simply because she wasn't ready to give him that information.

The fun of her not-truths (Brooklyn was a lone wolf, but other than that, Naomi had worked on girly instinct) was brought to an abrupt halt only a few moments later as Humphrey started to cry. Boys - in Naomi's experience - didn't usually cry. Callum and Jamie most definitely didn't cry (that she'd seen) so why in Merlin's name did the boy before her think it was okay to cry was beyond her. Naomi did, for a moment, look hurt herself... this was not exactly what she had intended to happen...

"I... Humphrey, it's okay. There are loads of other girls out there. I mean, if she did this... well, she can't have been that in to you. No use crying over spilt milk - apparently, I wouldn't know." Naomi tried to reassure him, using a saying she'd heard adults use a number of times.

But as she tried to console him, Humphrey flinched and Naomi withdrew herself from the boy. He was... very odd, to say the least. "Sorry..." The Slytherin witch murmured for her mistake without thinking about it. Deep down, there was a sensitive soul, but school life built up walls to keep Naomi from being hurt.

Finally, the boy seemed to regain himself, and as Humphrey asked if they could be friends, she gave him a look that showed she was very confused with him. "You're a very odd boy, you know that?" Naomi asked, shaking her head with a smile. "I just made you cry, and you want me to be your friend? You're a Hufflepuff, aren't you? Strange creatures, your kind. But, if it'll make you happy, sure, we can be acquaintances." Naomi offered, not really knowing what else to say in response.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 9:02 pm

Not getting a response irked him slightly, but he tried not to let her get under his skin too much. That was the real danger in talking to girls, Slytherin or not if they got under your skin you were in trouble. When Brooklyn and him had first met he'd been rather annoyed and irritated by her after all, and then they'd wound up going out. Perhaps it was better to steer clear of Slytherins, Humphrey thought to himself, but then shrugged because he didn't want to be that prejudiced and decided to go on a person-by-person basis. Dakota, definitely not, this person....possible friend? Once that was categorized in his head, he refocused on the conversation at hand.

"Didn't mean it in a bad way, I'm sorry if I offended you. It's just...well, one moment you act one way and the next completely different. What am I supposed to think? That it's normal behavior?" Humphrey asked, not really upset, just more confused and flustered than anything else at this point. Part of him wanted to know why he even cared what she thought about him, but the thing was he always wanted to make new friends. Even if it was somebody he didn't really necessarily like or understand, he wanted to befriend them, so he could. Something he'd learned that his sister had taught him was that there was always nice and good things in people, even if you couldn't always see it. So far, she had been right, in his experience at least.

"A pleasure meeting you, Naomi." Humphrey said, smiling a little. He said her name once more under his breath, thinking it was rather cute. "That's a pretty name, what's it mean?" he asked, looking at her curiously. The meanings of names was something he'd always been interested in, even if it didn't always match the person the name belonged to. A bit nerdy, probably, but he'd never really minded being called one. If he hadn't been Hufflepuff he was certain he would have been a Ravenclaw.

Crying in front of people he didn't know was not something he was comfortable with or proud about, and even though he'd learned her name she was still a stranger. Humphrey didn't like feeling weak or showing it to others, but he'd really cared for Brooklyn. That she hadn't even thought it worth her time to tell him herself or at the very least write an owl hurt just as much as the fact she didn't want him any more. Secretly, he'd always thought she was too good for him and their relationship was too good to be true, but it had started off so well that he'd started to hope maybe it was real and would last. Turns out he'd been dead wrong. They weren't happy thoughts, but the thinking helped distract him from the pain.

Hearing Naomi say Brooklyn couldn't have been that into him was like a slap to the face and he flinched again. "I don't know Brooklyn's reasons for her behavior, but she wasn't toying with me! She's not that kind of girl." he said loudly, not having his usual measure of self-control. "Sorry, I didn't mean to snap at you, Naomi. She was my best friend here, not just a girl I liked, you know? Hurts having somebody you cared about and trusted treat you like dirt." he mumbled, and then slowly stood up and rubbed as much of the salty tears away as he could with his hands.

The apology for touching him made him shake his head, and he smiled sadly at her. "Not your fault, you didn't know. No harm done." Humphrey told her quietly. "I'll probably go find my sister after this, she's the only one I really feel comfortable talking to about....feelings like this. Younger than I am, but she's always honest and figures out how to set my crooked head back on straight, and gives the best hugs." he told her, chuckling at how silly that sounded.

Blushing pink when she called him an odd boy, he tried to think of a reasonable response to that. "Heard it before, don't worry too much about it. I just be me, and if that's odd well I prefer odd." he told her with a shrug. Humphrey wasn't sure if that made the most sense, but hopefully she could understand what he meant. "Let's get one thing straight, it wasn't you who made me cry. That was Brooke, but apparently she's too much of a coward to be honest when she stopped liking me back. You've been rather straightforward, and I appreciate that. So, yeah, acquaintances and soon to be friends." Humphrey said with a wink, holding his hand out to shake on it.
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PostSubject: Re: Searching For Answers (Naomi)   Sat Sep 10, 2016 9:29 pm

Boys really didn't think, and Naomi gave up on trying to answer the boy. "Just... think before you speak, some people have feelings you might hurt. But, me, I am fine." Naomi replied - though strictly speaking, this was not true, but the Slytherin was not going to open up to a complete stranger about how he may or may not have just upset her. No, she was much more careful than that!

"It means pleasant, apparently." Naomi responded to the question with a small shrug of her shoulders. "I would imagine you don't believe that fits me, buttercup." She added sarcastically, but the smile that touched the Slytherin's lips a moment later showed that this time, she wasn't being angry with him. She was teasing him because he seemed to be the kind of kid that would be able to handle that much.

The snapping that came a few moments later made Naomi put her hands up slightly in a manner that said 'calm down'. The apology came only a moment later, and Naomi waved it away. "Don't worry, you're... upset. It's fine. But, you know, people that treat you like dirt aren't worth the upset. You'll forget about it, with time, I mean, hey, you're like... my age, so you'll have plenty of other people to make friends with, and stuff." Naomi tried to console, but she knew herself that the response was a little wishy washy.

Humphrey moved on to his sister - someone the witch didn't know - and once more Naomi was left with a moment of uncertainty on what to say. "That... uh, sounds great, yeah." She commented, in what she hoped to be a reassuring manner. Humphrey wasn't as boyish as her brothers, so this wasn't the easiest of things to deal with in that moment. He was a curious boy, with more curious actions.

"Fine, fine, you can be the little odd ball of Hogwarts, so long as you're happy with it." Naomi told the boy, letting out a small laugh. She was glad he wasn't upset anymore, even if he was continuing with the weird mannerisms. Which were concluded with him holding out his hand to her, to shake. Pausing for a moment, Naomi took his hand, shook it once and let it go.

"Acquaintances, for now." Naomi replied to his suggestion, though she made no mention of friends. She doubted the strange boy would be very welcome in her group of friends.

More importantly, Naomi doubted Humphrey would want to be her friend when or if he ever found out she'd made the whole thing up about Brooklyn's feelings no longer being there. Perhaps, this once, Naomi had played the manipulation game one step too far... but it didn't seem to have been too bad an outcome...
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