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Janet Shinings, Scott Morrison

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 Peace of Mind (Theo)

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PostSubject: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sat Mar 04, 2017 3:24 pm

School was, in a word, interesting. Serenity didn’t quite know yet what she thought of it as a whole. There were so many different aspects of it she had yet to analyse. The learning itself wasn’t bad; she was used to sitting down and taking notes of different subjects, having done that her entire life. Of course, that had always been one on one with Seers and Legilimens (she had to learn Occlumency in order to protect herself from people who tried to read her mind and see the future, although it was far too complex for someone her age to attempt just yet; she learnt the basic theory of it, and once she turned fifteen, proper classes would commence).

But here, in classrooms with other children and people assuming everyone studied the same way, in the same speed, with the same methods? That was new and not in a way that particularly thrilled her.

Still she sat in the front row faithfully, taking notes and doing all the homework ages before they were due; what else was she supposed to do with her breaks? That was something else she couldn’t wrap her brain around -- how carefree everyone was. Besides those taking important exams, the children seemed to genuinely just enjoy running around and laughing with one another.

It was almost as if they didn’t carry secrets. It took her a few days to realise that they didn't -- that they weren't the weird ones. She was. She was the one that Saw people, not as they presented themselves, but literally who they could be. A lot of the time, she even got a sense of their past, a sense or premonition that she just knew was true.

And, for the first time, Serenity was beginning to hate it.

Stretching her legs out, she lifted her chin so her face caught the rays of sun just before they disappeared behind a cloud. It was good to be outdoors. Somewhere nearby, Tammie sat, not taking her eyes off from Tammie, but so used to the elf was Serenity that the presence of the creature didn’t even register. For once, she was away from the crowds. Their lives would whisper to her, flashes of images of people and things and events that were not memories of her own, and she hated it. Out here, though, there was nothing but wind and the scent of flowers and grass.

Out here, she was free.

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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sat Mar 04, 2017 3:37 pm

With the weather growing warmer, Theo was a little bit more happy. Though, since his second year had began, he'd been struggling with his lycanthropy. His mum had told him that this was likely due to the fact he was fast approaching puberty, and his body was changing, and therefore the werewolf inside of him was adapting to that. It meant his body ached in between the full moons, and it was horrible.

Theo, though, was a tough cookie. With his bag filled with some sweets, parchment, a pen and an assortment of other useless objects he didn't need, the boy had made his way outside. He needed to pen a letter to his mum to let her know how he was getting on. He'd forgotten for a few days, and his mum was prone to worrying incessantly about him.

The lake was quite beautiful at this time of year, so Theo made his way down to the bank, not really in search of any particular area, when he saw a girl with a House Elf. House Elves weren't uncommon at the Jameson estate, nor, of course, were they out of place at Hogwarts. But, students didn't normally have one. Curious about that, Theo moved over to the witch, and gave her a small smile.

"Hi..." Theo said softly, not wanting to make the witch jump. "Is this your house elf?" Theo continued, motioning to the elf, and then giving it a small wave. Honestly, Theo was only trying to be nice, and he hoped he hadn't offended either the girl or the House Elf with his actions.
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sat Mar 04, 2017 4:09 pm

Watching the reflections on the lake, Serenity found herself slipping off to a place she rarely visited -- one of complete peace. The few times Aunt Sally found time to take her out for a vacation, the pair would find a quiet place to rest, resulting in some of Serenity’s favourite moments. There was nobody but Aunt Sally and Tammie, no pressure to learn any lessons, no anything.

And then her mind suddenly did a double take and she tensed, walls starting to come back up.

Someone was closeby. She could feel the whispers that only a human could produce, a buzz in her mind that told her she was no longer alone, and she braced herself -- but nothing came except for a flash of yellow, and she let out the breath she unconsciously held. It wasn’t too much of a surprise when someone -- a male -- spoke, and she sat up straighter a little, turning to find a Hufflepuff there.

That explains the yellow, she thought.

The question wasn’t one that she hadn’t expected at some point; after all, as far as she knew, she was the only student at school with one. This was where her problem came in; she didn’t like lying, but she wasn’t allowed to go around freely telling every Tom, Dick, and Harry about her abilities. It wasn’t safe and it wasn’t proper.

Pushing away her conscience, she nodded. “She’s assigned to me for my protection,” she told the boy. It was the truth, after all. “Her name is Tammie.”

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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sat Mar 04, 2017 5:36 pm

Theo had smiled more warmly when the girl turned to him. She was pretty - not in a sexual manner, Theo's mind did not work like that, but like Emélie was a pretty like girl, the witch before him was too.

The explanation that Theo had been given was one that didn't completely make sense, but he didn't ask why she would need protection. Sitting down - with a little space between him and the witch, Theo smiled at the House Elf. "Hi Tammie, it's good to meet you!" The boy told the creature warmly, before turning back to the witch.

"My name is Theo, by the way, Theo Jameson." He added, because the second year was yet to realise that being the Headmaster's son was not always as good as he thought it to be. "I'm not interrupting anything, am I?" Theo added, realising that he had just sat himself down within hearing range of any conversation the girl might have been having with the House Elf before he'd arrived. His cheeks flushed a little at the realisation, he'd been more than a little bit rude now he thought about it.
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 5:29 am

Serenity waited as Tammie bowed -- not a deep, low one like she did with the people at the Ministry, but a polite one nevertheless -- and replied, "It is good to meet sir, too." Then, judging that Serenity was not in any danger, Tammie retreated back to her previous position a few feet away, seating herself down. It was the illusion of privacy, but something the Ravenclaw was so used to that she might as well have been alone with the boy.

She didn't mind, not really. Making friends was a new concept altogether for her, but she always revelled in a good challenge. "I'm Serenity Newman," she replied, smiling just a little. As always, she kept her gaze away from the boy, focusing on the ground at his feet instead; it was safer than meeting his eyes. Most of the time she Saw someone's past was when she first looked them in the eyes. There was something familiar about his name, but she wrote that off as one of her stupid premonitions.

The question caught her off guard, and she hesitated. Nobody really asked her that before. When she was needed in the ministry, she was called. If she happened to be doing something else, she simply put it away and obeyed instructions. I have a choice to say yes? she wondered, briefly. Does he leave if I do? That was an interesting notion; normally, it was the other way around. People told her they were busy or not to disturb and she went away.

Part of her wanted to test this theory, but her desire for friends overrode the curiosity, and Serenity shook her head. "No, you're not." She paused, a thought flashing across her mind. "You're the headmaster's son," she added, speaking before she could stop to think if it was a suitable question or not. Then, "What's that like?"
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 10:23 am

Theo smiled warmly at the elf as it called him sir. "You can call me Theo, I'm not a sir." The Hufflepuff told the creature, though, he did know house elves liked to be formal, he did try to show them that he wasn't the kind of person who would ever treat them badly. His mum had explicitly told him that there was no reason why a house elf could not be treated with respect. The elf soon retreated though, and Theo frowned a little with confusion, but decided not to ask, because house elves could get pretty upset if they thought they were disobeying orders.

"Serenity..." Theo echoed, his frown remaining a little because it was an unusual name. Not unlikable. Just unusual. "I've never heard that name before..." He added, though he hoped the witch didn't think he was being rude. "My full name is Theodore, but I like Theo more. Theodore sounds old."

"Good - sorry I should have asked before I sat down." Theo said, meaning his apology even if the girl had said she was okay with him being here.

The question of being the Headmaster's son made Theo smile to himself. "Well, he adopted me when he married my mum, so he's not my biological," Theo had to say that word a little slower because it was a tricky one. "dad, but he's been my dad since I was little. Well... kind of... it's complicated. But being the Headmaster's son is awesome. Like, this year, I knew we were getting new professors before any of the kids did. Which is awesome. And I get to go wherever I like!" The last was not strictly true, Theo had no special privileges. He had simply assumed that because he'd never been caught, he wasn't breaking rules.

"Is this your first year?" Theo asked, because he was quite sure he hadn't seen the witch around before. "How do you like Hogwarts?"
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 12:24 pm

Tammie merely bowed in reply; she wasn't there to talk or to serve anyone other than the ministry by protecting her ward. That was her only job and Serenity knew it well enough to not be bothered with trying to talk to the elf. Besides, there wasn't much left to be said after the first few tries. Tammie went everywhere with the girl, so it wasn't as if they could catch each other up on news or anything of that sort.

"I've never heard it before in others, too," Serenity agreed. "Aunt Sally said she gave me that name because that's what she wants for me -- peace." There was a bit more than that, like how Aunt Sally hoped that she would use her abilities to bring that to others as well, but it wasn't something she should have shared. So, like the obedient girl she was, Serenity kept it hidden, not seeing any harm in it. After all, it was for both her safety and the safety of others.

"Theo is nice. I don't know any Theodores, so you're my first just like I'm your first Serenity," she noted. It seemed like the right thing to say. Or, at least, that's how one made friends from what she gathered; pointless comments and pointless conversations.

She waved away the apology and took that as her cue to look away, out to the lake. So far so good, and no flashes or visions were presenting themselves, and she crossed her fingers, hoping that it would continue this way for at least a little longer.

Listening to his answer, she realised almost at once that he had misunderstood her. But still she waited for him to finish, taking in all the words he had said. If she'd been anyone else, she would have found unfairness in the assumption he had free roam of the school -- but Serenity wasn't just another girl, and she found nothing wrong with his statement. Instead, she smiled at him, still keeping her eyes on the grass at his side instead of him.

"That's nice, but I think you misunderstood me." She paused, phrasing it in her mind before she spoke again, tone soft; she hated correcting people. "I meant, what is it like to have a father?" Growing up knowing she belonged to the ministry and having only Aunt Sally (who was never really a mother, but someone who took care of her), Serenity never really wondered what a real family was like until she saw a child following one of the Ministry workers around on a bring-your-child-to-work day and realised her life was anything but normal. And now, surrounded by normal children with normal lives, her Ravenclaw curiosity was growing.

Nodding at the first question, she didn't even hesitate before answering, "It's different. It's crowded. There are children here. I don't understand it, but... Yes. I like it. I really, really do." And she meant it completely, a light, happy smile on her face, something she hardly ever did.
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 2:13 pm

The idea of being named Peace - or similar - was odd, but Theo supposed the reasoning was valid. Though, Theo did pick up on how the girl said Aunt Sally had given her her name, instead of a mum or dad. "Well... I think it's a nice idea." Theo told the girl with a warm smile, and he did genuinely mean that.

"That sounds awesome!" Theo told her, both being their first unusual names. Not that Theodore was as unusual as Serenity, of course.

"Oh..." Theo replied, not realising what she'd meant. He frowned a little at her question, but perhaps the witch beside her was much like him, and her dad had walked out on her family too? "Umm..." Theo thought about that for a moment because he'd never really been asked before. "Well, when I was younger, mum used to get quite uh... sick. And she sometimes didn't want to do things. So, when dad came along... he... well he fixed things..." Theo didn't know how to explain mental illness to another person, nor did he know how to explain what Daniel had done either. "But, for me, it's nice, because dad makes mum happy, and when mums happy, I feel happier. Oh, and dad had a big house, so we got to move out of our flat in to that!"

It was probably not the answer Serenity wanted... but Theo didn't know how else to answer.

"Didn't you... go to school?" Theo asked the witch with a look of confusion when she said there were children here. "Or, did you get home schooled?"
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 2:25 pm

She smiled a little bit at his statement, knowing, somehow, that he meant what he said. "Thank you. I think so, too." It really was, the more she thought about it, although somewhat ... what was the word she learnt? Oh, yes ... somewhat ironic that she got so little serenity in her life. Still, one could always hope and dream; that, really, was all Serenity had left that was truly hers.

"Sadness," Serenity supplied. She's seen that type of sickness before in one of her teachers. It wasn't that long ago, too, maybe a year or so, and it had come in a flashback that wasn't hers of someone hurting someone else. The teacher hadn't come back for a while after that, and Aunt Sally had to explain how some people got a Sadness Sickness because of things that happened to them. "She got the Sadness Sickness too? Aunt Sally says people who live with that are very, very strong and deserve love. I'm glad your father loves her."

Hesitating a little, Serenity pushed even more and, in the softest voice yet, asked, "What is it like to have a mother?"

She shook her head at the question. "No. I had special lessons at the-" She stopped herself short, realising she had been about to explain about the Ministry's classes; she wasn't supposed to reveal that unless she had no choice. "Aunt Sally said I'm special," she backtracked. "So I didn't go to a school. I had different teachers come and teach me things, though. It wasn't at home, so I don't know what you would call it."
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PostSubject: Re: Peace of Mind (Theo)   Sun Mar 05, 2017 3:20 pm

When Serenity spoke of the Sadness Sickness, Theo nodded along eagerly. "You know of it too?" He asked, somewhat surprised. His dad had always said that it was unusual, but not uncommon for people to get the Sickness, and that his mum was doing her best to deal with it. "She has lots of love, I think my little sister Emélie helps too, though. Lots of good, happy things." Theo explained with a smile.

The question about having a mum made Theo blink. "Umm..." The boy started, before thinking back to his mum. A fond smile touched his lips as he thought of his mum. "She likes to sing to me, when I get... upset. She always pulls me in to her arms, cradling me in to her, runs her fingers through my hair, and sings softly. And she cooks the most amazing dinner... She's always been there for me, if I need her, and... she never gets sad because of me..." Theo explained, a weird feeling brewing up in his tummy as he spoke that he didn't recognise to be homesickness.

"Don't... Don't you have..." Theo began, before deciding not to finish that sentence, because it was rude.

"Oh... so you weren't in a school... private tutoring then." Theo offered in way of explanation.
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