A weak man has doubts before a decision, a strong man has them afterward. ~ Karl Kraus
Friday, May 25th ~ Morning
Almost a week had gone by since Remus had informed Harry of Neville Longbottom's fate and who was the prime suspect in Remus' own problem. He'd spent the days remembering his old classmate and how brave Neville had been in spite of - or maybe because of - his own fears. He wondered briefly if Neville's parents were still alive, but knew he'd never check as he would have so many years ago.
Even if I did check, they wouldn't know or care who I was, he reasoned with the tiny bit of conscience that refused to stay quiet. It fell silent at last and he rose from the desk in his office to glance at the time. A few pieces of parchment were in one hand as he went downstairs to stop by Doris' office.
"Doris," he said as he laid them in her tray. "I'm leaving now and I won't be back until Monday."
Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. ~ George Bernard Shaw Friday, April 27th ~ Morning
It was Friday. A mixed blessing in Doris' opinion. It wasn't as good as a Monday, but wasn't as bad as a Wednesday. By Friday, the instructors and students were looking forward to their weekends and there were any number of things Doris always managed to pull out of her bag of tricks to delay them as long as possible. New forms crinkled as she laid them out on her desk. Picking a student one up to read, she smiled.
I think I managed to get more trivial questions on this one than on all the others combined. Pity I can't make the teachers fill one out.
Or can I?
Doris' eyes narrowed in thought while her quill tapped against the side of the empty, sad looking in box on her desk.
Every time I close the door on reality, it comes in through the windows.
Tuesday, March 27th ~ Morning
As Harry sat looking across his desk at Doris - who was droning on and on about things that supposedly needed his immediate attention - he was having a pleasant little daydream about being at home, in bed with his wife. Until his elbow - which had been used to support his head - fell asleep and threatened to collapse. He blinked his eyes, straightened up and shook his arm awake off to the side.
Another piece of paper was laid on top of the stack she'd already placed on the desk top and her mouth kept moving.
And yet another one joined it and the words were flowing faster than he could keep up with.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. Tuesday, March 13th ~ Late Afternoon
When the package arrived, Severus almost didn't bother opening it. There was work to be done at the shoppe, and he needed to get back. The letter that had been attached slid to the floor when he tossed the entire thing onto one of the kitchen cabinets, and it was only as he bet over to pick it up and saw the return address from a solicitor in London.
The letter was an apology for not sending the package last week. The package revealed a journal which only made his confusion grow.
That confusion quickly turned into horror as Severus read the last entry.
Event of my death - therefore - I'm dead... That couldn't be possible, he'd just seen Potter a few hours ago and these idiot solicitors were claiming they were supposed to have sent the journal a week ago... Unless they had managed to screw up even more and sent the thing early?
What if Potter was planning to do the deed that very night?
He rushed to the fireplace and tossed in a handful of powder, calling out for Mrs. Crockford at the Phoenix.
After Harry's order to cancel the rest of his classes for the day, Doris tried to recover from the sheer terror respect his glare had inspired in her feet. They refused to move until Draco's voice motivated her to assist them - quietly for once - in gathering the students. While she was occupied shooing the reluctant ones into the auditorium, her thoughts tumbled around which students she needed to get out of his remaining classes. Shooting Severus and Draco an occasional glance, she decided they'd get the ass-grabbers this time around.
At least they'll live to grab another one someday.
"I want... I need, more than what we have. I want to get married. I want a family. With you, ideally."
No amount of alcohol, physical exercise or reckless rides on the motorcycle seemed to wash Daphne's words out of Harry's mind. The expression on her face when he told her he couldn't give them to her haunted him as well. Nightmares had returned with a vengeance cloaked in more pleasurable beginnings.
Monday mornings to Doris were like Friday nights to most other people. She lived for Mondays with the complicated little tangles that could result from the enthusiastic pursuits of those less levelheaded than she was over their weekends. Plus she always had the Phoenix to herself if she went in early to prepare those nice homey little touches she prided herself on.
A word, if I may? Monday, November 20th ~ Afternoon
Bill edged his way past a group of children in Hogwarts uniforms, all carrying cameras - The hell? - and silently slid into one of the practice dueling rooms at the Phoenix. Maybe now wasn't such a good time, but this had been bothering him for awhile now and needed to get it off his chest.
Harry was just finishing up some sort of talk or something and that Creevey guy from Harry's Halloween party started to herd the kids out.
"Oi, Harry, do you have a sec? I need to talk to you."
Experience is a dear teacher, but fools will learn at no other. ~ Benjamin Franklin Tuesday, August 29th ~ Evening
The Great Hall has once again been temporarily revamped. The long student tables have been removed and round ones accompanied by comfortable dining chairs have taken their place. They dot the floor under the enchanted ceiling, the soft ivory tone of the linen covering the table tops invite you to sit and enjoy yourself.
When I got to the garden party, they all knew my name Friday, July 7th ~ Afternoon
The grounds of Hogwarts had never looked better. Pomona Sprout was in heaven.
The hedges had been trimmed and were bristling with pride, the songflowers were trilling softly in the breeze, the creeping vines had twined up onto the tables and were gently offering passersby cups of punch or tiny trays of appetizers.
She had never once in her life doubted that Hogwarts was fit to receive royalty, but to have it confirmed ... Oh! She nearly glowed.
The guest list had grown a bit in the planning. It was a once in a lifetime event, after all, to see the faerie-people and of course to see the castle grounds in the summer. Luckily, Minerva hadn't seemed to mind.
Everything, thought Madame Sprout as she looked around the mingling crowd, was simply perfect.