Post by Grace Sørensen on Jul 22, 2020 14:11:31 GMT 2
It had been an hour, maybe even longer, and Grace had finally come to terms with one definite fact: she was most stupendously lost, something was definitely a worry because if she stayed out any longer, she was going to miss curfew and get detention and be even more of a social outcast. She wouldn't just be that 'muggleborn girl,' she'd be that 'troublemaker muggleborn girl' who everyone would stare at from the corner of their eye, just in case she did anything wild like... like... write in purple ink during a History of Magic class instead of the standard black.
To be fair, Grace being lost wasn't entirely on her... or so she liked to think. It was just - towards the end of the welcoming feast, she'd started to feel a bit too sick, like she was going to throw up, and had darted to a bathroom a few floors higher up to hide. Her thought process was that it was too risky to vomit in a bathroom near the hall because... what if somebody heard and thought she was far too gross? There was much less of a chance they'd hear her if she was several floors away from the Main Hall, right?
Then when she'd finally wrapped things up and meandered back down to the hall to follow her peers to the building she was meant to reside in for the rest of the night... everyone had gone which had led to her wandering and now poking her head into every room she could just in case someone was there to give her a helping -
With a gasp, hand flying up to cover her mouth, Grace leapt several feet backwards from the room she'd just popped her head into because those people weren't going to give her a helping hand, they were far too occupied with giving each other a... "Why would they... that's not sanitary. People sit at those... oh Merlin, I can't sit there tomorrow," she whispered, horrified, as she legged it down the hallway as fast as she could, too caught up in replaying the image burned into her brain to actually look where she was going.
Usually the trip to Durmstrang was rather uneventful -- Augusts spent it chatting away with the few friends he had, or laying down in one of the hammocks below deck, letting the ship sway him into a nice nap as it made its way around the waters of Europe, gathering up students.
This year, right before getting on board, he'd made the grave mistake of eating way too many cheese sandwiches, and something told him that the tomato in one of them might not have been the freshest. He'd spent the entire trip sitting by the privy, marinating in his own discomfort. After a rather cleansing, yet terrible visit to the bathroom, Augusts had hoped that his stomach would finally calm down. Yet, during the feast he couldn't get himself to eat more than a few bites, so, once it was nearing the end, Augusts decided to have a walk through the castle.
He'd been walking for a good half an hour, lighting up his third menthol flavored cigarette with his wand, when someone turned around the corner and ran right into him, sending both his wand and the unlit cigarette into the air, and making Augusts call out in surprise.
The culprit stumbled a few steps back and Augusts looked at them, wanting to know who and why was tearing through the halls like the devil running from the cross. But... He realized that he couldn't place a name to the rather distraught face. This wasn't someone a year above or below him -- he would have known if they had donned the blue and white uniforms together. This girl was someone new, and Augusts didn't have a single clue what language to use. German? Russian? Maybe English was a good idea?
Picking up his wand and cigarette from the ground, he smiled at the girl and decided to just ask if she spoke either language, watching her face for that spark of recognition. Russian seemed to get more of a response out of her, which was a relief to Augusts -- his spoken German was far from great.
"Why are you running so fast?" he asked, tucking his wand back into his pocket and, after a brief consideration, putting the cigarette back into its carton which was poking out of the other pocket of his black uniform pants.
Post by Grace Sørensen on Jul 23, 2020 13:11:34 GMT 2
As luck would have it, Grace's oh-so-elegant scrambling away led to her crashing into someone... a boy, as it turned out, half-way down the corridor. That would teach her to not look where she was going and Grace grimaced as the boy let out a surprised shout in another language, almost anticipating that he was about to whirl around and start yelling at her, give her a right tongue-lashing, but in a bad way, not a good way like that couple - oh God. Two people she definitely did not need to start thinking about again because... because she really needed to get them out of her brain. It wasn't polite to keep replaying what she'd just seen in her head. Although, they probably should have locked the door because really, they could have been caught by anyone and... who would want that to happen? It seemed silly.
When the boy struck up a conversation, first asking something in... er, German, maybe, Grace blinked because she wasn't entirely sure what he was saying. Her spoken German was abysmal, at best. She barely even knew how to say 'hello, how are you?' because she'd never had a real reason to - they didn't speak German in Norway, nor did they speak it in Koldovstoretz. They spoke Russian there, and much to Grace's relief, that's the language the boy switched to next, asking what she'd been running from.
"There was... there... just two people were doing some very, er, perculiar things in the classroom down there and... well, it would be rather rude to just stand there and watch, right? So I... decided to, um... just run. Away. Because it seemed more polite?" She didn't sound too sure of it, however it felt like the correct decision in the moment. It would have been weird to just keep staring.
Biting her lip, Grace wondered what to say in return to the boy in order to keep the conversation flowing when she spied what looked like a cigarette of all things in his fingers, one that he was tucking into a carton in his pocket. "Do they... I mean, do... were you going to smoke inside? Is that -" Grace's voice hushed and she looked around, as though what she was about to ask was a secret, "... is that allowed? I mean, won't you get in trouble for... for... doing that?"
The girl's face was flushed red, which Augusts assumed was simply from the unholy speed at which she had been tearing through the halls of Durmstrang, running away from... What, exactly? Had some beast escaped in the halls on the very first evening and maybe it was a good idea to keep running?
Her answer didn't clear up all that much, making Augusts' eyebrows furrow in confusion for a few moments. "Peculiar things? What do you--" Two people. Stand there and watch. Peculiar things. "You," he began, his tone amused, "You walked in on someone? Whoever those two are, they aren't wasting any time, the Feast has barely ended, or... Well, more like half an hour ago, but that doesn't really change things. We should probably go the other way, then, let them have their fun."
Then the girl was pointing out his cigarette pack, almost scandalized that Augusts was smoking, to which he responded with shrugging his shoulders and pushing the pack a bit deeper into the pocket, away from prying eyes.
"I already was smoking, and, well, as long as nobody catches me while I'm at it, it's really whatever. The most I'll get it a warning and my cigarettes taken away," he answered. It had happened once or twice before, and he'd become wiser since then, but tonight nobody would bother with patrols, so he felt pretty safe.
"Do you want one? They're menthol flavored," he offered with a gentle smile, "Or... I've also got watermelon flavored chewing gum, if you're not into smoking. And my name is Augusts, by the way."
Post by Grace Sørensen on Jul 27, 2020 12:43:10 GMT 2
For a second, Grace nearly died as the boy pressed for clarification on what she meant by 'peculiar things' because... well, explaining what she had just seen? How was she supposed to break it down politely? What they were doing had been the opposite of polite, and... luckily, the boy made a quick deduction of what she had meant, saving her the squirm-inducing job of giving him a description. "Yes, I walked in on someone - two people," she said, reaching up to twist the delicate chain of her necklace. "I... well, I don't really know why that had to do it there of all places. I don't exactly see the appeal - I mean, wouldn't a bed be more comfortable? Or a, uh, conveniently arranged set of pillows? They - a desk hurts to even sit at during class, I can't imagine how uncomfortable it would be to do things on." As Grace spluttered and babbled her way through the logistics of spots to do things, she turned and took the boy's advice, walking in the other direction.
"But... but doesn't it hurt your throat? Smoking and all? A lot of the people where I live, they smoke, and they end up hacking up their lungs up," Grace said, a concerned expression etching it's way onto her face. Pausing after a moment's thought, Grace tacked on musingly, "Although... I suppose a lot of them have been smoking an awful long time - usually it's the older people who cough, not the people my age."
The offer of a cigarette had Grace's steps slowing down to almost a complete halt, and she glanced at the pocket he'd tucked the carton into. It wasn't that she wasn't curious... she did want to know why so many people smoked, what the appeal was, but the thought you'll become addicted was always at the back of her head, and she didn't want to be like her parents. Not even a little bit. "No, thank you," she said quietly, her gaze lingering for a little before she moved it to his face, offering a smile in return. "I'm Grace. Gracie, if you want. I'm... I'm new, and I'm afraid... well, I'm lost. Are you lost as well?"
"Those two must have had a long and boring summer, no doubt waiting for each other if they're so eager to get it on this soon," he said, "I don't think I would want to do it on a table, but," he shrugged, "Who knows. Haven't gotten that far yet." He was just 16, after all, and while the thought was enticing -- to do something considered so adult and, apparently, so exciting and uplifting, Augusts also felt like he wasn't quite ready. Kissing both boys and girls was fun though, that was a discovery he'd made in the previous year.
While the girl -- Grace -- was rambling on about smoking and how it made people cough so loud that they could make the roof of a house fall off with the noise alone, Augusts fetched the same cigarette out of its box once more, lighting it up with his wand, enjoying the scent of menthol. He made sure to keep the smoke and his own exhales away from Grace's face -- he didn't want to be rude.
"It does make you cough if you do it wrong, or your lungs are already bad. I know it's no good to do it, but... It gives me something to do," he explained. He wasn't a particularly anxious person, but something about the whole process was calming. Whenever he had a reason to think very hard about something, his hands reached for the little cancer sticks.
"Gracie? That's cute. I'll tell you immediately that I don't like being called 'Gus' or something of the sort. Makes me feel like a grandpa." He explained, returning the smile, "New? Are you-- Oh, are you one of the muggleborns? Gee," he drawled, "You're brave. If I were you, I'd never would have come here." If he had the choice, he would have dropped out of Durmstrang years ago. This place was far too mean for Augusts tastes, but he didn't have that option.
"I'm not lost, my stomach wasn't feeling too well so I decided to leave the feast. Where were you going before we ran into each other?"
Post by Grace Sørensen on Aug 21, 2020 11:56:24 GMT 2
Grace had no clue what the two she'd walked in on had been feeling - she'd certainly never had the inclination to throw herself at someone and do... well, that in a classroom, although she'd very, very quietly read about similar encounters on her phone when she had the chance and there was available WiFi to read online books from the library. Sometimes she wondered.. but no.
The boy's forthright admission that he hadn't gone that far yet had a choked noise escaping Grace, somewhere between a gasp and a cough because wasn't that fairly personal information to be sharing with a stranger? Swallowing, clearing her throat, Grace wondered if this was her cue to share something with Augusts. "Me, um... I don't - I've never... neither have I." Heck, she'd never even held hands with someone, let alone gotten to that stage. "Do... do you have a girlfriend or a boyfriend or... I mean, you don't have to tell me if... if you don't want to, or if I'm being nosy or... you can just opt out. Like one of those texts they send - you know, text opt out if you no longer wish to... to subscri... nevermind."
"That doesn't smell as bad as the ones the people smoke in my neighbourhood," Grace admitted as the boy lit up a cigarette, the smell wafting in her direction even with it pointed the opposite way. Toying at her sleeve, Grace watched Augusts smoke for a moment out of the corner of her eye, watching as any tension in his shoulders seemed to just... melt right out, like an ice-cream cone on a sunny day. It looked somewhat relaxing. "Have you been smoking for a long time?"
That's cute. Even though Grace knew that Augusts wasn't flirting with her, just paying her name a compliment, it caused a nervous giggle to escape her, her cheeks pinkening once more. "I... I think you're too young to be a father, let alone a grandfather, just yet - unless you somehow already have children," she joked lightly.
The same feeling that sent her rushing into the bathroom before, the one that caused her stomach to twist and flop and turn, returned. Huffing out an anxious breath, a small wobbly smile wavered at Grace's lips as she said, "I... I'm sure it'll be - it can't be any worse than Koldovstorez." The words didn't sound confident which aptly described how Grace was feeling. All bravado whooshed out of Grace mere seconds later and she admitted quietly, "It's closer to home. Much closer, and... and that was a good enough reason for me to transfer." Her grandmother wasn't well and if something happened, god forbid, she could get back home quickly. "Is it really that bad?"
Augusts seemed nice, like he wasn't one to tease, and after going back and forth in her head for a while, she decided to tell him the truth. "I felt a bit sick, like I was going to - you know, be sick, and I didn't want to be the new girl who everyone knows threw up in the bathroom on the first day so I tried to find one that was a little bit further away."
"No, I've never been in a relationship," he said, "Had my first kiss last year with a girl I had a crush on during a game of Spin the Bottle, and then a few kisses here and there... But nothing serious. A little too young for that, I think." He was only 16, and he was in no hurry to do all the things that he and his friends had giggled about just a few months earlier. If he was to fool around with someone, it would probably be a boy -- he didn't want to make anyone worry about accidental pregnancies.
"I've been smoking for... Three years now?" he answered, turning his head away to puff the smoke in the opposite direction. "It started as a thing to do while chatting with friends, and then... You just start craving it more and more often... There is something calming about the process. I know it's no good, but..." he shrugged, shaking off a bit of ash, "I don't think I'm going to quit until I leave this place."
"I wish my parents had sent me to Russia instead, but... It's a long story," he grimaced. His parents were the products of the Soviet age, and they held a rather irrational grudge against Russia as a whole, and while Augusts understood where they came from, Durmstrang was his personal hell. "Durmstrang is full of rather old fashioned beliefs. I'm not looking forward to this year, or the next one..." His little sister was supposed to start school the next year, and he hoped against all hope that Durmstrang wouldn't turn into a battlefield of pureblood idiots and people who weren't stuck in the previous century.
"Oh, then you don't know where the dorms are! But that isn't a problem, I'll be right next door, so I can show you. We have to go outside," he said as they turned a corner, arriving at the large staircase in the Entry Hall, "I just hope it hasn't started raining."