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SUMMER 2021

It's time for a little rest and recuperation. After a tumultuous schoolyear culminating in coordinated attacks upon both Hogwarts and London, magical citizens could certainly use a break. Summer is upon us, and while the immediate danger has passed, not every creature is taking the summer off.

JUNE 19TH - JULY 13TH NOW OPEN

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» 11 June 2021 Tell my friend that I'll be over here, Amelie
Clíodhna Puckard
 Posted: Feb 15 2018, 07:16 PM
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Lillie is Offline
102
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16 years old

5th year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


With the year winding down to a close Clea found herself feeling more and more at a loss. After managing to complete her exams – with a bare pass in potions – she was glad for the chance to sit on the shore of the Black Lake with her sketchbook enjoying the sun. Knowing that soon enough she had to get serious about her sixth year at Hogwarts the brunette was happy to let herself rest in the 'right now' instead of worrying about what was to come. After the rush of studying for, then writing her exams it felt good to just sit quietly to scribble whatever her eyes and hand coordinated to create. She refused to put any thought whatsoever into perfecting the scribbled landscape or to try and worry herself over creating something <i>true</i>. Although there was a bench not far from her chosen spot Clea sat on the bare ground, pencil case full of all the bits and pieces she might need for a coloured sketch if she so desired.

She found that she liked the freedom of it all. She liked not thinking about whether this piece was salvageable for one of the shows she had yet to prep for. It didn't matter if this drawing was nothing more than a silly landscape drawn in a doodley style or if she coloured it ridiculously. This put a small smile on her face, the idea that she could colour the sky green and make the grass aquamarine if she so decided. For her own entertainment she added a silly looking giant octopus with an angry look on its face.

@Jaz

This post has been edited by Clíodhna Puckard: Feb 15 2018, 07:16 PM
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Amélie Lemaire
 Posted: Feb 28 2018, 08:14 AM
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11 years old

First year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Now that exams were over, all Amélie wanted to do was paint. Maybe she could paint the castle for her mother and father—they would like that. She wanted to pour her heart into a painting, create something that was entirely, unabashedly her. It had been so long since she’d done that; she missed it. She missed a lot of things that she’d left behind in favor of obsessing over her ability to protect herself and others—an obsession born out of fear and grief and guilt, nothing more, nothing less. She carried her easel and canvas across her chest, tucked under her arms, with her watercolors, cup, and brushes in her pocket. She walked down from the common room as quickly as she could without dropping anything, politely declining any offer of help she received. She didn’t want to bother anyone, and she was perfectly capable of doing this on her own.

When she finally arrived at the lake, she saw someone was already there: Clea—with her own easel set up and paints out. Amélie smiled to herself. This was where she had first met the older Ravenclaw. She was rather fond of Clea. She saw a lot of herself in her. There was something about painting with another person, even in total silence. There was a sense of solidarity that filled the air; it was peaceful. She felt more connected here than she did anywhere else. Clea was something of a kindred spirit to Amélie—they enjoyed a lot of the same things, and Amélie enjoyed her company. She loved hearing the stories behind each of her painting. Having grown up with French folklore, she didn’t know much about Irish folklore, so it was nice to learn. She walked over to her, hoping beyond hope that the older Ravenclaw wouldn’t send her away.

She walked up beside the Ravenclaw. “May I join you?” She asked quietly, so as to not disturb her. She smiled and set her easel down on the grass, facing the castle. She pulled her cup out of her pocket and scooped up some water from the lake, picking out anything that wasn’t water with her fingers and throwing it back into the lake. She put her canvas on the easel, put her cup in the holder at the side of the easel. She piped a bit of the colors onto her palette, took a brush, and mixed the grey with some water. She started to paint the castle, starting with the outline and filling it in. She mixed some darker grey with a dark blue for the shadows and texture, using a coarse-haired brush to dapple it onto the grey, lightly for the stones, and then more heavy for the shadows between the stones.

“Do you ‘ave any plans for ze summer?” She asked, looking over at Clea.

@Lillie
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Clíodhna Puckard
 Posted: Mar 7 2018, 10:26 PM
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Lillie is Offline
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16 years old

5th year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Clea smiled brightly at the younger girl, glancing up at her. “Of course you may. I was just finishing off some preliminary sketches.” She explained as she patted the ground next to her invitingly. “I've tried a new process – no deep thought, no obsessing, and absolutely no emotional connection with the piece. Not bothering with perfection or worrying if it's good enough... hopefully it'll turn well.” Clea told Amélie softly. “I've worried far too much about my art being right... it's always got to be right... and maybe being right isn't what it needs from me. Perhaps I need to learn to let go and be something more... or I'm simply psyching myself out over nothing and I really need some sort of mental help.” The last bit was mumbled to herself darkly.

“Plans? Oh I never truly plan for anything... other than exhibitions in London and a few other obligations through the Gallery I've nothing. Oh... Da has a few plays I'll have to attend – and will be expected to lend my artistic skills to help with backgrounds and the like – but I've not anything else. Most likely the bulk of my summer will be spent locked in my studio making a desperate attempt to get enough pieces finished for the showings. Sometimes I might have a visitor or two but even then we'll be in my studio. I am hoping to make it to France this year for I've always wanted to visit the Louvre. Last summer Da promised we'd go this year if I managed to pass all my classes. Suppose he's begun thinking bribery is more efficient than discussions as I will simply tell them what they wish to hear. Mind, I do really mean it when I say the words yet I never really manage to hold up to them later on.” The older teen explained, not even realizing that she'd begun rambling on. “I'd like it if I sold well this summer... made a bit more of a name for myself. Obviously academia is not meant for me so I've a need for some sort of following... frankly I'd settle to have just one person tell me the painting they bought from me changed their life view.”

She examined her sketch with a small shrug. “Perhaps I should hope for a friend, I've asked a few other students if they'd like to attend one of my exhibitions this summer. Would be lovely to see a familiar face that was glad to see me. Sometimes I spot other students but if they don't acknowledge me I usually just act as if I've not spotted them – I'd rather not embarrass myself by assuming someone is my friend then find out I've upset them with the assumptions. Better to be alone I think. We should discuss something else... how about you? What plans have you for the summer?”

@Jaz
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Amélie Lemaire
 Posted: Mar 21 2018, 06:56 PM
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Jaz is Offline
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11 years old

First year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Amélie smiled at the older girl, nodding in agreement. “Oui,” she said, “Wanting to do well is good, but only if you do not lose yourself in ze process.” If only someone had been there to tell her that a few months ago, when she would stay up through the night, trying to master spells beyond her age level for fear of someone else dying because of her. But that had been exactly what had happened to her—she had lost herself in her desperation to ensure that her shortcomings never cost another soul their life. She had pushed everyone she loved and who loved her away, forfeiting her time with them in favor of practicing for hours on end. She had seen the worry in her brother’s eyes, heard his voice pleading with her to take a break when it was the middle of the night and she was still awake, in tears because she still couldn’t perform the spell, and she was near collapsing from exhaustion because she hadn’t slept in nearly four days. And still, she hadn’t listened to him.

But right then, Amélie was okay. Right then, she was happy—content and excited all at once—things were good, and they could only get better. She’d gone so long without feeling joy that its presence itself was like coming up for air. For the first time in months, she’d been able to imagine herself having a future—going home, coming back to school in September, seeing her old friends and making new ones, learning new spells and concepts. And, for the first time in months, she’d looked towards that future with excitement and hope rather than fear and dread. She could finally see what she had to look forward to—what she'd had all this time, what she'd lost about in the darkness, what she'd finally found back.

She looked over at Clea and smiled fondly at the mention of her home country. "France is lovely during summer," she said, "Especially down by ze sea—it's warm." She turned her attention to her painting, continuing to layer the colors. As she finished the stones of the castle, she moved onto the sky, starting with the edges and working her way towards the inside. This sky was both grey and blue, as though rain and sun were fighting for dominance—so far, though, the sun reigned victorious. Perhaps the next week would see that change—Amélie wouldn't have minded that, but she didn't mind the sun, either. She looked up at the sky as though trying to discern whether or not she should move her painting inside. The sky was almost perfectly clear—the only clouds being faint wisps high above them, as though they'd been painted with free, swift strokes.

"I don't believe I 'ave any plans," Amélie said. "I 'ope to go visit Ame. I miss 'im." She sighed, smiling wistfully at the thought of him. "I would love to go to one of your exhibitions, by ze way. Now zat Félix can...can—" she furrowed her eyebrows, trying to find the word. "Poof..." She wasn't sure that was it, but it was close enough. "It should be easier for me to get zere."

@Lillie
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Clíodhna Puckard
 Posted: Mar 30 2018, 10:19 PM
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Lillie is Offline
102
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16 years old

5th year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Clea smiled at the younger girl. “Well if you'd like I've always tickets waiting with the attendant for anyone that says they're my guest – usually there's three or four tickets there. You wouldn't even have to come visit with me if you'd rather not. And please don't feel like you must come and thank me or anything, I never check with them if any of the tickets were claimed or not. Much rather imagine no one came than know someone claimed one yet didn't wish to speak with me when they came in to look about. Not that I wouldn't be glad to see you but... you wouldn't have to if you didn't wish to. I'd rather be ignored than have someone only pretending to wish to see me for the benefit of self.” She admitted with a small shrug. “And if you need another way of travel I'd be happy to help you. Wouldn't mind in the least paying for a train ticket or such.”

For years she'd been offering others a free ticket and had only once had anyone come over to speak with her at an exhibition. Clea expected that it was one thing for them to admit to knowing her but quite another to be seen talking with her, either that or her muggle life was so far removed from her life at Hogwarts that she might be mistaken for another if they didn't recognize her name. “Good on Felix for learning how to apparate. I'm honestly terrified that I'll fail m'own testing. Considering how well I've done with other aspects of magic... well perhaps I'd do better getting a muggle car licence. I've my learner's but those of course can only be used in Ireland – useless for anywhere else. Da felt it would be good to know how to drive so I've learned.” She told her young friend with a small shrug. “Couldn't afford a car of my own yet but Mum lets me drive with her quite often.”

She'd always worried about being capable of doing the things expected of a person her age – and every once in a while was exceedingly glad that her birthdate made her most often group in with the year after. Getting her learner's had been a harrowing experience, reading all of the important information and memorizing it had been easy enough but sitting down to actually attend the testing had been absolutely nerve wracking. “Unfortunately I won't be capable of getting my full licence until my seventeenth birthday. Even then it doesn't mean I'll pass.”

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Amélie Lemaire
 Posted: Apr 2 2018, 01:38 PM
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Jaz is Offline
92
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11 years old

First year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Amélie looked at Clea, tilting her head, unable to keep herself from being troubled by the fact that the girl seemed to think she'd rather not see her. Of course Amélie would want to see her. They were friends, after all—weren't they? Amélie liked to think they were. The fact that this girl was so insecure that she didn't think people would want to see her was saddening to think about. Amélie nodded, smiling kindly at her friend. "I'll be zere," she promised. She went back to painting the castle; now that the paint had had some time to dry, she could start adding in other elements—doors, flags, anything that wasn't grey. The finer details would come in last, once the big picture was established on the page. Watercolor required a certain sense of patience—it was impossible to add another color before the first had dried—any attempts to do so would result in the colors bleeding together, quite possibly ruining the piece. They were difficult to work with, in that sense, but the pictures they created were well worth it.

At Clea's offer to help her secure alternate means of transportation, Amélie looked at her gratefully. "Zank you," she said, "I zink Félix will be more zan willing to accompany me. 'E loves looking at art as much as I do." This was true: Félix possessed the same affinity for art and music that Amélie did. They'd been raised with a deep appreciation for the creative arts—it was a part of who they were. She thought of her brother with a sense of pride—he'd told her be'd be starting his healer training a few weeks after graduation. Even if Félix wouldn't be pursuing a career in the arts, she was sure he'd still love to go look at Clea's exhibition if she asked.

She understood what it was to want to be good at something, to fear you'd fall so far behind you wouldn't be able to come back. For her, the object of that fear was her spellwork. After the tunnel, she'd spent hours by herself, trying to master spells beyond her year level. The fact that there were so many spells she hadn't learned and thus, could not perform, had resulted in the deaths of two of her housemates—one of whom she had considered to be her friend. Her own shortcomings had resulted in two people losing their lives. So, she'd vowed to never let that happen again. It was the only way she could deal with the grief—working nonstop left her with very little time to feel anything. It hadn't been until she'd collapsed from malnourishment and exhaustion and woke up in the hospital wing, too weak to even stand, that she'd been able to stop. Her thoughts would not allow her to before that.

"I 'ave every bit of confidence in you, mon amie," she said earnestly, smiling brightly at Clea. She started adding the grass—dark green mixed with hints of brown; grass was seldom bright, pure green. She added the color to the page in broad strokes before creating the blades with several short, upward flicks. It was a bit on the tedious side, but it worked well. Rinsing her brush, she looked at Clea again. "If you want to, you would be more zan welcome to come to my 'ome, too. We would love to 'ave you," she said. Her mother was rather fond of guests—her eyes had a way of lighting up whenever there was a knock at the door—so Amélie knew she wouldn't mind her inviting Clea. "If you need help getting zere, we can purchase a ferry ticket for you; it's no trouble."

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Clíodhna Puckard
 Posted: Apr 5 2018, 11:17 PM
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Lillie is Offline
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16 years old

5th year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Clea grinned happily at her young friend when the girl promised to come to one of her exhibitions. “I'll be sure to tell Da to keep an eye out for you. He's often in an out of the gallery and if there aren't enough tickets he'll be sure you're to be let in. We keep two tickets back – in case mum or Mághnus decide to join us after we've already arrived – so there's always an extra or two. Mum's a homebody, it isn't often she'll attend unless I specifically ask it of her and my brother would much rather not stay at the gallery all day. Da always stays with me as I offer him the same when I assist with the plays.” She explained as she sketched loosely. For all that the Puckards were a closely knit family they each had their own interests. “Felix is more than welcome to come too. I'd be glad to see more familiar faces. Hardly ever have visitors – and if you attend you'll also see what I look like when I've dolled m'self up. Believe it or not there is a lot of selling yourself alongside your paintings, patrons always buy more when they like the artist. Never quite got the hang of small talk or making m'self impress well upon strangers. Turns out most people find random facts awkward rather than interesting. Isn't very helpful that I've school during the year so I often miss any events during the year.”

Standing up Clea carefully dusted off her backside before moving over to her easel. “I've never had a sleepover before.” She said in a slightly embarrassed tone.”Then again I've never really had a friend that wanted to let me stay at their house, don't think I'll have trouble getting the money for the ferry ride but I'll keep that offer in mind thank you. I'd have to ask Mum and Da of course before we make any real plans, don't imagine they'd actually refuse. Might even hope you'd be a better influence on me.” The teen laughed at her own comment. “This year has been such a whirlwind of emotion I'll be grateful for the break summer will bring even if I've ever so much to accomplish. Maybe I'll even manage to get my homework done before we return to Hogwarts – wouldn't that just be a chance of pace? Would dearly love to see the look on Professor Ramsey's face if he heard I've actually not a detention the first day back.” The brunette let out a small laugh at the mental picture. “I'm nearly positive that he absolutely abhors my face but then of course with all the trouble I've caused him I suppose I wouldn't necessarily like m'self either. It's not like I intend to be so much of an issues though – and I've explained it so many times. Give me that man
That is not passion's slave.
Well, slightly out of the true context but nevertheless fitting as it were.”

Placing the sketchbook onto the easel against the canvas she then tied the apron that had been hanging on the edge of her easel around her waist. Picking up her pencil the artist then began sketching out roughly a larger copy of her sketch onto the canvas, careful to keep her pencil lines light enough that they would be easily covered by the layers of paint. “If your parents do let me stay over at your's I'll have to paint them something as a thank you. What sort of things do they like? Mum says one should always offer a heartfelt thank you when one is shown a kindness whether it is to a person deserving or no and I've nothing more heartfelt than a painting - I'm not much for the right words.”

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Amélie Lemaire
 Posted: Apr 10 2018, 08:07 PM
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11 years old

First year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


A few months ago, Amélie couldn't imagine herself smiling, let alone truly happy. Losing Hecuba had broken her, thrown her into a world she no longer understood. What she had been was anything but happy; she hadn't even been okay. She had told everyone around her that she was alright, that she was managing, getting through it, but it had all been lies. The truth was that she hadn't been getting through it—she'd been stuck and lost and there was no light at the end of this tunnel. So it had surprised even herself when she'd finally started to get better. It had taken a full-blown health crisis for it to occur to her that not trying to stay alive wouldn't bring Hecuba back, wouldn't turn back the clock. Right now, she couldn't stop smiling. "I would love zat," she said to Clea, "I'm sure you'll look lovely. I'll make sure to dress up, too." Truly, she just liked wearing dresses—special occasion or not.

She was excited. Already, the summer had held promise—even if that promise was simple: nothing more than the promise of going home and seeing her mother and father. She'd missed them so, so much—her year had been very nearly impossible, and one of the very few things that had pulled her through was the fact that in just a few months, she would be able to see her family. Now, a few months had become a week. The day she'd get to see her mother was getting closer and closer by the hour. Just that in and of itself was enough to fill her with joy. And then the plans she was making with Clea—going to her art showing, having her spend the night. It all made an already nice summer even better. She already couldn't wait; it was going to be amazing, she could already feel it.

She nodded in understanding—she could understand Clea needing to ask for permission before committing to any plants—Amélie's mother would've wanted her to do the same. She grinned at her comment—she'd never thought of herself as much of an influence either way—she was too young, too little, to influence much of anything. She could barely influence doors to open, if they were heavy enough. She couldn't count the number of times she'd had to ask Félix or one of her other housemates to help her with a door that she couldn't open. Other times, she simply leaned all of her weight into it—all twenty-six kilograms of her. At that point, the door usually opened—though sometimes she wondered if that wasn't the castle itself taking pity on her tiny stature. Or mocking her, though she wasn't sure the castle was sentient enough to possess a sense of humor.

Amélie smiled at Clea as she asked what her parents would like. Already, she appreciated this, and she knew her parents would, as well. They loved art. Her mother had been the one to instill that same love in her. She grinned, knowing her mother and father would love whatever the girl painted for them. "Zey like ze ocean and ze sun," She said with a nod, "And when zey're both toget'er, wit' ze sun turning the water to gold—zey love zat." Clea could have painted an alien driving a tank over hordes of the undead—or something equally absurd, and Amélie's parents would have loved it just the same, simply because they would've known Clea had taken the time to paint something for them. No good deed went unappreciated with them—and that was especially true for unsolicited gifts, especially paintings. Whatever Clea painted for them, Amélie was sure it would find a home on a wall in their parlor. "Zank you," She said, suddenly, smiling at Clea.

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Clíodhna Puckard
 Posted: Apr 16 2018, 10:19 PM
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16 years old

5th year student

Hogwarts
Ravenclaw


Clea picked up the pencil to begin sketching out on her canvas, “I am glad you've not been mentioned in any of my meeting with the 'esteemed' Professor Ramsey, cannot imagine he'd see our friendship in any sort of positive light. Once accused me of purposefully instigating Professor Dawson – as if he'd rather I lie to her about my interests in Herbology.” She snorted and shook her head. “I've not done any such thing. She asked me to explain to her why it was I've missed so many classes – and I offered her an honest answer.” She kept out the part about the fact that she hadn't been attending class partially because the lighting through one of the stained glass windows was at the perfect angle during the time she should have been in Herbology and she'd been so distracted by it that by the time she'd realized she should have been in Herbology she'd already missed most of the lesson for that day.

“Well I am quite proficient at painting waters and sunsets... I can never get them quite right of course... but I suppose your parents would be willing to forgive me any small imperfections?” She asked hopefully. It was always a worry of hers that people she knew were lying to her about her talent, that her pieces weren't anywhere near as good as they claimed them to be. Of course they sold well enough that she knew she must be at least reasonably good at painting or she never would have been invited to join the other young artists at the gallery to exhibit her pieces. Noticing her young friend smiling at her she grinned back. “Whatever for?” She asked in reply to her friend thanking her.

“Maybe sometime you can come visit my home? I'd absolutely love for you to see my studio, it's this old workshop in the back yard that Mum and Da originally had set up as a play house for us... of course Puck was really the only one that really played in it. When she stopped having any interest in it any more Mum decided to turn it into a studio so my messes would have a place to contain themselves. Once I tried filling water balloon – the kind you throw at others – up with different colours of paint and pin them to the canvas to pop with darts like that game they have at muggle fairs? Where you pop the balloons and win a prize based upon which balloons you popped? It was a huge mess but mum and I were laughing so hard while we did it that I don't think she even minded how much of the grass was painted. Still have those canvases hanging on the wall in the den even thought I was nine... ten? Anyway, quite young when we did it. We could do that – it's heaps of fun. I've even some bean bag chairs and a music player inside, and it's been fitted with plumbing so I can wash out my brushes too. Think at one point whomever owned the house before us must have done woodworking or something.”

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