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Blind Leading the Blind

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#1
Practicing walking to class had seemed like a good idea at the time. The chance to learn the fastest routes and know exactly how long it should take to get where set Elliot’s mind at ease. He hadn’t really counted on getting so lost, to the point where he wasn’t even sure what floor he was on. He could have sworn just taking the staircases down would get him back to the 4th of 1st floors at least, but it seemed they kept moving him around in circles and none of the rooms up here seemed familiar.

At least he was doing this now, rather than when he actually had a class to get to. Currently, Elliot was leaning as far out the corridor window as he dared, trying to swallow down the vertigo as he peered down to count the floors below. If he could just figure out what floor he was on, maybe he could figure out where to go.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#2
Maddy was almost as eager to explore the castle as she had been to explore the forest. She was living in a real castle! Like something out of a fantasy story! And there were real moving staircases, and real talking paintings, and towers and dungeons and everything. Just getting from the dorm to breakfast in the morning was almost an adventure.

Maddy set out from the common room with no particular destination in mind, aiming purely to see what she could find that might be interesting. She'd brought her compass and her water bottle, like she would for exploring in the bush, but she was fairly confident she wouldn't get lost. She hardly ever got lost in the bush, after all, and there were paths and people here, so it must be easier still. She'd been wandering for a while when she spotted a boy leaning precipitously out a window. Curious, she went and leaned out the adjacent window. "Long way up, isn't it! This is a cool idea."
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#3
At the sound of a voice, Elliot whipped his head up so fast he nearly brained himself on the window frame. He gripped the sill to regain his balance. “More of an idea of desperation than coolness. I’m trying to - hold on-” Elliot pulled his head back inside, talking to the girl while hanging out the window was making his stomach turn, “I’m trying to figure what floor I’m on.” He paused and considered his new company. He recognized her from some of his classes, so another first year like he was. And she had a compass.

Do you know how to get to the 4th floor? Or even the Great Hall, I can find my way from there.” He’d tried asking one of the portraits for help already, but it’d been more interested in gossiping about what one of the gargoyles in the North Tower was up to rather than give him directions. Maybe he’d have better luck with an actual human.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#4
"Woah! Don't hit your head!" Maddy realised too late that the way she'd approached would startle the boy, but fortunately he managed to avoid injury. She chuckled as he pulled his head back inside, and lingered a moment later to look at the ground far below and enjoy how high up she was before joining him. Now she could see the boy's face she recognised him from classes; a Hufflepuff, she thought, but she couldn't remember his name. "Oh, right. Still a cool idea. This is the sixth floor. You lost?" She spoke with confidence, but honestly she wasn't completely sure herself. Maddy had done a lot of wandering up and down stairs, though she was still certain she could find her way back just fine.

"Sure, I can do that." Maddy grinned, happy to help. She could probably help. It'd be fine. "I'm Maddy, by the way. What's your name?" Maddy consulted her compass, mostly because she thought it made her look impressive, like an intrepid explorer, and set off towards the stairs. "It's this way."
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#5
The sixth floor, so Elliot wasn't too far off. If Hogwarts followed any sort of logic, they should just need to go downstairs and he'd be fine. Though Elliot had a hunch there was more of a knack to navigating the castle than that. "I think I got turned around on the stairs. Or they turned around while I was on them... I've never really been lost before, but I guess I am." Not that Elliot had ever really had many chances to get lost. New York was pretty big, but he'd generally stayed to the place he knew. If only Hogwarts worked on a grid system.

"My name's Elliot. And thanks.." Elliot appreciated that Maddy seemed to be taking some pity on him. And another first year was preferable than having to ask an older student, or even a teacher for help. "Do you know your way around already? I can't seem to get the hang of the stairs yet." Maddy seemed confident, heading to the stairwell. Her compass certainly seemed impressive.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#6
Maddy nodded; the boy's story about the stairs made a lot of sense. "Those stairs are really weird," she agreed. "It's almost as if they don't want us to know where we're going." She hesitated, thinking of Sebastian's D&D games; they definitely felt a lot like the sort of thing he'd put in one of those. "Like a puzzle!" she added. She smiled cheerfully at him. "Don't worry, I'm pretty good at not being lost. Between us, we'll be fine."

"Great to meeet you, Elliot." Maddy strolled confidently along the corridor, glancing behind her to make sure Elliot was following. "I don't exactly know my way around yet," she admitted, "but I know how to navigate, so I can usually find my way anyway. I haven't really got the hang of the stairs yet either," she said as she came to the stairwell. There was a staircase in front of them that was definitely going down, though, and Maddy figured if you were trying to get to a particular floor you couldn't go far wrong. "This one looks good," she said, and unhesitatingly plunged down it. They were about halfway down when the staircase jolted and started to move. Maddy quickly grabbed onto the railing with one hand and Elliot with the other. The staircase settled with its foot leading to a narrow corridor rather than the wide landing Maddy had expected. This wasn't what she had hoped for, but she led the way anyway.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#7
Elliot was glad he'd bumped into Maddy, following closely behind her as she forged ahead. Descending the staircase, Elliot heard the now familiar clunk as the stairs began shift. He wobbled for a moment, grabbing onto Maddy’s arm as she grabbed him, steadying the pair as the staircase swung. It ground to a halt in front of a new corridor, long and narrow, lit with only intermittent torch light. Elliot cast a glance to Maddy, but she seemed unfazed, pushing forward.

The corridor had an eerie chill about it, a draft from somewhere that made the hair on the back of his neck stand on end. Elliot stuck as close to Maddy as he could without touching her, the atmosphere compelling him to speak in a whisper. “Have you been here before? This doesn’t look like the fifth floor...” Their shadows danced strangely in the torch light and Elliot brushed a cobweb from his hair as he turned to check over his shoulder. “Maybe we should go back-” As he spoke, Elliot watched with a small amount of dismay as the staircase once again jolted away, leaving an empty landing in its place. “-Oh.” He turned back to Maddy. “Lead on?
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#8
Maddy shrugged, unfazed. "Well, this must be the fifth floor, since it's one floor down from the sixth. I'm pretty sure basic geometry works here." Probably. This corridor did look pretty spooky, but what was an exciting adventure without some scary times? Maddy just hoped they didn't find any monsters down here, like they would if this was D&D. Glancing back at Elliot, she decided not to mention that. He looked nervous enough as it was. "It'll be fine," she assured him, with more confidence than she felt.

Maddy led the way ahead down the corridor, and when it branched she unhesitatingly turned left. "I haven't been here before, but it must circle back to the stairwell sooner or later." Maddy didn't recognise anything here, but then, she didn't have Transfiguration this semester. The castle was clearly far bigger than it needed to be as a school, but it had to be enormous, it was a castle. And parts of it had to be spooky. That was just common sense. The next corner led right, further away from the stairwell, but at least Maddy knew that. She wasn't lost. This was fine.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#9
They turned another corner, winding deeper into the castle. Elliot had definitely never been here before, but still Maddy didn't seem to hesitate. "Do you do this sort of thing often? You seem pretty... Well prepared?" The corridor was still giving Elliot the creeps, the shadows in the dim light catching at his imagination. "Hold on," Elliot paused as they turned another corner, pulling out his wand, "There we go, Lumos!"

His wand lit up, the light a little meek, but it made him feel better, and Elliot couldn't help but share a gleeful smile with Maddy. Maybe this little adventure could be pretty fun. As he turned to Maddy however, Elliot felt the blood drain out of his face. Looming over her shoulder in stark wand-light was a snarling face. He grabbed at Maddy's arm, brain rushing between running or just giving up and letting the monster eat them.

After a few moments of blind panic in which they were suspiciously not immediately devoured, Elliot chanced another glance at the creature he'd seen. He immediately felt his fear melt away to embarrassment. It was a statue. A big snarling gargoyle statue, tucked into an alcove of the hallway. Dropping his hand from Maddy's arm Elliot tried to pass off a casual laugh at how frightened he'd been, though it came out a bit forced, his hands still shaking a bit. Maybe Maddy would buy it.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#10
In a way, castles were more confusing than forests. In the bush, you could go whatever direction you needed to go, except things like detouring around dense thickets. Here, though, there were all these walls trammeling you into straight lines, and until you reached an intersection you just had to follow them. "I'm used to exploring in the bush," Maddy told Elliot, as she turned another corner, which she thought should logically lead them closer to their goal. Not that much seemed to be logical around here. "We live on the edge of Fiordland National Park, and me and my brothers play there all the time. Good idea," she added as Elliot lit up his wand, and did the same with hers. She should have thought of that, really, but they'd only just learned the spell.

Elliot turned pale and grabbed Maddy's arm, and she whirled around to see what was frightening him. "Aah!" For a moment, Maddy was equally alarmed, and then she registered what she was looking at and burst out into giggles. "Oh, wow. That was . . . wow. That's really cool, actually." Elliot still looked a little pale, so Maddy kept her hold on his arm as she held her wand up to examine the gargoyle. In the dim light, it loomed threateningly, its grotesque features lit at unnatural angles. This was definitely a good adventure, and what sort of adventure didn't have a few cool monsters? Admittedly, she was quite glad it hadn't come to life and eaten them.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#11
The statue wasn’t alive, thankfully, but its eyes seemed to follow them in the wand light in a way that made Elliot uneasy. At least Maddy seemed to be having a good time, which helped Elliot relax a little. “That must be cool, going out an exploring with your family. I never really do much of that when I’m here in the Summer.. Though I like going out at night to stargaze.” Not quite as adventurous perhaps, but Elliot still thought it was pretty cool.

Elliot stuck close to Maddy as she took a closer at the statue. It was a bit conspicuous in the otherwise empty, if creepy hallway. Elliot suppressed a shudder as a draft ruffled his hair. “It’s kinda cool in terrifying monster sort of way,” he glanced at Maddy, “If you like that kind of thing.” Elliot brushed his hair out of his eyes again, the draft making it tickle at his face. “There’s a draft-" Elliot tried to blow his bangs out of his face, "-coming from somewhere…” He eyed the statue suspiciously, but wasn’t keen to get any closer to it until Maddy did first.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#12
Maddy grinned and nodded. "Yeah, I love exploring. Stargazing is fun, too." Honestly, Maddy didn't have much patience for stargazing; she'd rather be running around than sitting still, but the stars were pretty. Her little brother was quite interested in the constellations and the myths around them . . . actually, now Maddy thought about it, Elliot reminded her a little of Sebastian. Maybe she could introduce the two of them when Seb finally got to school. Maddy frowned as she noticed a little oddity in Elliot's phrasing; was that a thing, or was she just misunderstanding. "Do you mean you're not here not in the summer?"

Maddy smirked. "Yeah, I kinda do like terrifying monsters," she admitted. "I'm really into dragons, dragons are awesome." Maddy hadn't really noticed the draft until Elliot pointed it out, but now that he did she was quick to jump on the implications. "Do you think it might be a secret passage? Those always have drafts coming from them in stories." Maddy got right up close to the statue, prying and poking at it, hoping for something to move and reveal itself. "It'd be incredible if we could find a real secret passage, Wills would be so jealous." Impatiently, Maddy crammed herself into the alcove to peer behind the gargoyle before she'd looked at the statue itself very thoroughly, waving her hand about trying to feel where the draft was strongest. Maybe Elliot would be better at searching the statue more thoroughly. The notion that he might not want to go off on a tangent looking for secret passages never occurred to Maddy.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#13
Elliot's heart rate was finally returning to normal, though he was still feeling distinctly vulnerable, standing in the empty hallway. He pulled his eyes away from the statue to where Maddy was poking around. "Uh yeah, I live in New York with my mom most of the time, but I always spent my Summers in New Zealand with dad. It's kinda neat to get two Summers.."

Somehow Elliot wasn't surprised Maddy was into monsters and dragons. He was starting to get the impression that anything most kids would run away from, Maddy was running to. "Dragons are pretty cool, though I don't know if I'd fancy ever meeting one," Elliot eyed the gargoyle as he spoke, "If I was going to hide a secret passage, behind a big scary statue would be first on the list, for sure." He stepped a little closer to the statue as Maddy wedged herself behind it. If this was anything like a fantasy story, they'd probably need some kind of password or to solve a riddle. "Maybe there's a magic word we have to say.. Like getting into the common rooms." Elliot held his wand up to the statue's face, watching the shadows twist its features. "Or maybe..." he reached out his hand, pausing, before pressing a finger into the statue's left eye. Elliot flinched as the eye depressed with an audible thunk.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#14
Maddy listened curiously as Elliot described his life; it sounded interesting, though complicated. “Oh, wow, that’s kinda cool. Though it’s a shame your parents are separated.” Maddy couldn’t imagine living with her parents in different places; the family being together had always been something she took for granted, before William started Hogwarts, and it still felt weird and wrong that they weren’t. “I’ve never even been out of New Zealand,” she said. “I’d really love to travel someday, though. What’s it like in New York?”

“Oh, I’d love to meet a dragon,” Maddy said, oblivious to how alarming that might seem to some people. She kept tapping and peering around the back of the statue as Elliot examined the front of it. “I hope it’s not a magic word, or a spell or something. We’d never guess that, and we don’t know enough spells yet.” Maddy couldn’t even think of any spells Wills had talked about that might be useful in this situation. But even as she pondered that, Elliot did something that produced a loud noise. Maddy flinched backwards, just in time for the statue to sink into its plinth with a loud graunch. And before their astonished eyes, the panel behind it slid open. “YES! You did it, you did it!” Maddy bounced up and down. “Uh, do you wanna go first, since you opened it?” She hoped he’d say no, but it was only polite to ask.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#15
Elliot shrugged when Maddy commented about his family life. It’s wasn’t really a big deal to him, not really ever knowing anything different, though having a big family all together certainly sounded like a lot of fun. Maddy may have never left New Zealand, but Elliot couldn’t help but feel like she was a lot more worldly than he was. She had a compass and everything.
New York is..” He smiled, “Lively, busy? There’s always something going on,” he struggled to really describe what it was about the city he loved so much, “People might be a little ..brisker with you than here, but there was still this sense of everyone being in it together. And I love the tall buildings.” New Zealand, by comparison, always felt so small and isolated to him. Though he kept that part to himself.

He startled when the statue descended, scuttling backwards to stand near Maddy as she wiggled her way out from behind it. He hadn’t really expected that to work, relieved it revealed only a passageway and not some sort of booby trap. Flexing his fingers a few times, Elliot peered into the newly revealed passage. Going first was the last thing he wanted to do. “I’m not even sure we should go in at all… Who knows where that goes?” Elliot glanced back at Maddy, considering. It’s not exactly like they know where the hallway they’re in right know went either. But at least the hallway probably won’t be filled with spiders or monsters or traps… probably. “Maybe we should go see if the staircase has come back". Elliot was suddenly a whole lot less sure about this adventure.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#16
New York sounded overwhelming, although Maddy didn't want to admit that to Elliot. Honestly, even Hogwarts was kind of overwhelming, compared to her tiny home town that only got busy when a cruise ship arrived. There were so many people here, and they were always going somewhere; the bustle of the corridors had been a shock to Maddy at first. Though in this particular corridor, a bit more bustle might have been useful. "In the pictures I've seen of New York, there don't seem to be any trees. Is it really like that?"

Maddy had been worried that Elliot would be anxious about going into the passageway. There was no way she wasn't going in there, but honestly she would prefer not to do it alone. "Aw, come on, we can't find a secret passage and then not go in! Who knows, it might lead exactly where we want to go." Maddy wasn't about to admit to being lost, but they couldn't exactly get more lost. "I'll go first if you'd rather. Come on, please?"
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#17
Elliot laughed a little at Maddy's question, shrugging. "I mean, there are some trees, in parks and some of the nicer places I guess. Nothing like what you're used to probably," he said, thinking of the Forbidden Forest and surrounding green. Really, all the forests and trees made him a little nervous. He didn't know what a lot of the plant were and it all seemed so vast and landmark-less. How could anyone ever find their way around in there?

Maddy clearly wanted to go down the passage. Elliot glanced between her, the hallway, and the newly opened passageway a few times. He could feel the rational side of his brain, the one yelling for safety and familiarity, warring with some other part, the part that wanted Maddy to like him and think he was cool. So far, the cool side seemed to be winning. Besides, what if he said no and Maddy went in anyway. He took a breath before looking back to Maddy's eager face. "Okay.. but you go first. And if anything eats us, it's your fault," Surely they wouldn't keep anything really dangerous in the castle..
Elliot peered down the open passageway one more time, swallowing back his uncertainly as his eyes followed where the ground seemed to disappear into the darkness, before taking a pointed step behind Maddy.
 

Madeline Kaimarama

Adventurous | Leader | Dragon enthusiast
 
Messages
99
OOC First Name
Jasmine
Blood Status
Mixed Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Age
7/2036
#18
Maddy was astonished at how comfortable Elliot seemed at the idea of just not having trees nearby. Of course, she supposed he was used to it, but . . . Maddy couldn't imagine living like that. She had always taken for granted being close to the forest; the bush was her grounding influence, and the source of much of her entertainment. "That's so weird," she said. "I've always lived by the forest . . . and as far as I know there isn't anywhere in Aotearoa that doesn't have quite a lot of trees." Even in the pictures of the big cities Maddy had seen, there were trees around on the streets, and plenty of green spaces. To her, that seemed only reasonable.

Maddy watched nervously as Elliot looked around; he was taking a long time to make a decision, and the reckless part of her just wanted to rush in and see if he followed. But that wouldn't be fair to her new friend, and she did want to do this with him. She grinned triumphantly when he finally agreed. "Yaay! Don't worry, it'll be fine. If anything tries to eat us I'll protect you." Maddy raised her lit wand high, and full of excited anticipation, she stepped into the passage. It began with a flight of steps downwards, which was a surprise to Maddy - but then, down had been where they were trying to go. This was a great start! "Watch your step," she reminded Elliot, and started to descend.
 

Elliot Briar

the mom friend
 
Messages
155
OOC First Name
Kris
Blood Status
Half Blood
Relationship Status
Too Young to Care
Wand
Alder Wand 13 3/4" Essence of Dragon Heartstring
Age
6/2036
#19
Maddy still seemed really stuck on the lack of trees around the city. Elliot could appreciate trees, they were pretty and exciting in a sort of call to adventure way, but the rare times he'd tried to go exploring around his dad's place he'd usually just found a lot of cicadas or run into an electric fence. He'd much rather try his luck on the subway system if he needed an adventure. "I don't know what I'd do be surrounded by trees everyday. They're neat and all but-" Elliot tried to figure out how to phrase it, "I guess I find it all kinda daunting. Aren't you ever worried about getting lost?" Or eaten by something, he thought to himself. The last thing he wanted to dwell on as they descended into the passage was something eating them.

Elliot followed Maddy into the passage, trying to let her enthusiasm chase away the little voice in his head talking about what a bad idea this was. And Maddy has said she'd protect him, so that had to count for something, right? She could definitely handle all the terrible things probably waiting for them down here, like monsters, or bugs, or traps. Elliot had to shake himself a little bit, taking the steps a bit faster before Maddy left him behind, counting each step quietly as they went. "How far down do you think this goes?" he asked after a moment, his voice echoing slightly in the small space. At this point, Elliot had forgotten all about getting back to the common room, any familiar location would do if it meant they weren't lost anymore.
 

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