Operation: Bowtruckles & Bombs

Chasing Dragons & Avoiding Dementors => Germany => Topic started by: Koi on Mar 31 2019, 07:20 AM

Title: No ballerinas here
Post by: Koi on Mar 31 2019, 07:20 AM
Fanny had the sneaking suspicion that her pitch was off. She never had been musically inclined, with an inability to carry a note. She should have taken better care with her tuning. She’d heard muggles had special forks for it and everything.

Yes. She was pretty sure that was where she had gone wrong. The horned serpent was not reacting at all like she had planned. Fanny had been intending to lead it farther into the marsh and away from the camp that was setting up too near its usual habitat. Well, it was following her. Just not in a very friendly manner.

Yes. Her sneaking suspicion was a bludgeon now.

Music box - which looked like an old bucket with a sauce pot as a hat - jangling in her hand, Fanny ran. ”Oop, oop, oop!” She panted, dashing up a hill and jumping down into the ditch on the other side. She heard a bush die a slithering death behind her as the serpent crashed through her wake, humming a note that made her spine feel like pudding.

Without meaning too, Fanny lead it right into her camp. Panic driving her away from the original target - a safer place for the serpent - and toward what should have been a safer place for Fanny. ”Look out!” She shouted, jumping a log that had been laid out for seating. She even made the jump, an impressive feat for a witch of her height, but stumbled the landing and ended up rolling into the middle of camp.

Her music box went flying, clanging through the camp with several discordant notes that made the horned serpent give an outraged cry. Or maybe it was a pained one, the noise was awful.
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Jones on Mar 31 2019, 07:05 PM
”Morgana’s tidy toenails what in Merlin’s name is this girl doing.” Frederick groaned. Watching from the cover of a thick bush as Fanny darted by. An emerald crested Horned Serpent hot on her heels. Either very enthralled or very upset by the clinging tune of her whatsit-thingy. It was hard to know which, since giant snakes were not known for having very readable expressions. If, Frederick lamented, it had been a dragon he might have judged its body language better.

It was not, however, that sort of great scaled beast. What it was, was two tons of muscle about to blow right through the bush he was hiding in. Following Fanny who did not turn towards the agreed upon point where traps and Mickey’s waited to contain the creature. Instead she burst over a log and right into their campsite. ”Fanny!” He called, once he had peeled himself up off the ground- having thrown his body sideways to escape the powerful snake’s path.

”Fantasia!” He could not lose another Mickey. No, no, no. Chanting his refusal under his breath Freddy tumbled into camp, chasing the snake who was chasing his best (if rather misguided) trap maker. Wand called to hand so he could cast a few attention getting spells at its hard hide. They bounded uselessly, and unnoticed, off the beasts scales. One toppling over a tent. Another rattling leaves from a tree. ”Turn around! Here, here you silly girl.” He waved his hand at Fanny. Stumbling over the same log she had elegantly launched right over.

A long rope of magic whipped from the end of his wand. Spiralling around the serpent’s neck he pulled the lasso tight to force it to turn away. ”Fanny, you either get that thing working or you get your ass to the capture point.” He yelled as the lasso snapped against the beasts rage. Turning it’s eyes on Frederick it gave a wicked strike, fangs narrowly missing his shoulder as he rolled to dodge its attack. There were a lot of horned serpents in America. He had earned his reputation luring them from muggle communities into the deep forests. ”This,” He growled under his breath. ”is why I like dragons. Less temper.”
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Koi on Mar 31 2019, 07:38 PM
Fanny had thought she’d heard him. Her name on the wind while she’d run for her life. Pissed off lizard right behind her. Mow she was sure of it. Her full name making her cringe more than the bruise settling into her shoulder. Coming up on her hands and knees, Fanny spat a leaf out of her mouth and groaned.

”I told you not to call me that!” She shouted, rolling again just in time to avoid a slashing tail. Hopping to her feet, Fanny tripped again, stumbling into a tent. Looking down she realized what the problem was. Her boot had come untied. ”Blast.” She swore. ”Triple blast!” She squealed as the tent collapsed next to her. Dear Freddy was whizzing spells around madman. Americans!

”Why is he waving?” She asked herself before rushing away from the falling tent and the thrashing serpent. Her music bucket was twanging pitifully from the ashy fire pit. She could feel the magic in the cogs whining pitifully. What a mess! And real, actual mess with soot and everything. ”I’m trying!” She shouted, casting frightened glances over her shoulder. He was going to get himself killed!

”Fredrick!” Fanny shouted, swinging the bucket around and clanging it against a tent pole. It gave a wail before winding up to life again. Pulling out her wand, Fanny gave it a swirl and raised the volume. ”Come on! This way you slimy lizard!” Fanny cried, scrabbling over the fallen tent and trying to orient herself. Which was the capture point again?
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Jones on Apr 03 2019, 11:49 AM
”Five minutes then we just run for it.” He instructed, rather than blurting out ‘try harder’. The Europeans had very different ideas about what was polite. In his time abroad Frederick had learned the hard way that he was too blunt for most. Even when he had no intentions to be. Things were just different ‘across the pond’ as they liked to say. It wasn’t just his mouth that marked him different from his fellow wizards, however. It was his style of doing things in general.

Cowboy, they teased, referring to the old Western gunslingers whose legend had grown beyond American tales. But he was pretty sure they had better aim. Not that hsi was bad per say. He was firing spells, after all, it wasn’t as simple as pointing and pulling a trigger. You had to get the words and the wand movements just right. ”Any luck?” He called while dodging another blow.

”Don’t worry about me, Fanny, get your toy going.” This girl! She would get them both eaten alive. The camp was laid flat as they coaxed the beast between them. Splitting its attention between them. Then with a strange series of clicks Fanny’s contraption started singing again. The tune wretched out through the leveled campsite and the Horned Serpent went still. Panting from the one sided duel Frederick squatted with his hands on his knees. ”Praise Merlin’s curly chin hairs.”

When he had caught his breath a second later Frederick straightened again. A flare fired up into the sky from his wand tip. Signalling to the rest of their small unit that the animal was on it’s way. ”We have to lead him to the charm circle so he’ll fall asleep.” That would make transporting him marginally easier. Aside from the fact that he was a giant snake and all. Motioning wiht his fingers he waited for Fanny to make her way to his side. ”Slow and easy. He likes the music, it’ll keep him nice and calm until we get there. One step at a time. Together.”

They had not gotten very far before his mind started to go over the whole scene again. And he turned to her with a lifted eyebrow, ”They’re not slimy, by the way. Or lizards.”
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Koi on Apr 05 2019, 09:20 PM
What did that even mean? ”What?!” Fanny shouted in confusion. Weren’t they doing that already? The way her sweater clung uncomfortably to her underarms was a pretty good assurance she had been doing some sort of running. And then there was the sweat smarting in her left eye. Puffing, Fanny wiped her face on her sleeve, a defensive tilt of her wand keeping a piece of campsite from smashing into her. The stool rebounded off her shield and clanged harmlessly away.

No! Fanny didn’t bother answering, however, too busy trying not to die - by serpent or wayward Freddy spell. Obviously if she had been in luck - and Fanny didn’t think luck had anything to do with her device - they would have had a lot more campsite left. Tripping over a pot, Fanny gathered up her music bucket, leaving a trail of ash and dissonant music in her wake. It was hard to get the parts moving again while trying not to be squashed by a giant reptile. Or while worrying her friend was about to get himself fanged. Or worse, bound up by one of his own spells.

”Its not a toy!” Fanny defended hotly. Such insinuations always went right under her skin. Turned her blood to boiling anger. The righteous sort, Fanny was sure. Toys! Her inventions were anything but! Face set in a frustrated scowl, Fanny got the music bucket going again, at long last. The serpent went still all over, entranced by the noise, which sounded a lot less like an angry band of pixies beating a xylophone now that it was working. But still not something Fanny would call appealing.

The snake liked it though.

”Right.” She knew that! She’d just forgotten when the music had gone off pitch and the serpent had decided she was foe instead of friend. Breathing heavily, Fanny inched around the camp until she was alongside Freddy, unconsciously heeding the summons of his fingers. Too many weeks in the wilderness with a person did funny things social constructs.

”What is it, a walk or a waltz?” She joked, swiping her now limp hair out of her face. She didn’t like it sticking to her forehead that way. Make her think of octopus hats. ”Really?” She asked him, eyes wide. ”Are we going to have this discussion now?” She waved her wand at the serpent following them into the marsh. She was beginning to suspect Freddy just couldn’t help himself. ”Besides, if he isn’t slimy now he will be after we cut through this bog, lizard or no.”

To prove her point, Fanny’s boots squelched ominously.
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Jones on Apr 11 2019, 11:08 AM
”It spins and clanks and whirs and sings!” Frederic argued in huffs between dips and dodges. Completely oblivious as to why she treated the word like an insult. Toys were great! They were fun. People made their fortunes designing trick wands and flying train replicas. This toy could half hypnotize a horned serpent! ”It’s a toy, and a damn good one, now that it’s working.” People could be so sensitive.

That didn’t seem to improve her feelings any. Fanny’s appreciation for his help seemed slim, if it existed at all. In fact she came across as more offended by his reminder of their next step than glad. Nose twitching Frederic bit back any replies that gurgled into his head, urging her to come over to him instead. While he moved towards her too. Fanny obliged. Coming around the campfire and remains of a tent so that they met halfway. Both back slowly in the right direction, unwilling to take their eyes off the creature.

”If twirls and foxtrots get us there in one piece I’ll take it.” It was a joke-not his answer but her question. Frederic recognized that she was trying to be amusing. Saw it in the gleam of her eyes and the way the corner of her mouth turned up. So he smiled, and pretended it was funny. While the actual humor in it sailed right over his head.

They walked on, the ground softening beneath them as Frederic corrected Fanny. And she sassed his right back. ”Why not now?” He questioned. Eyes drifting towards the serpent that swayed as it slithered along behind. Bright gaze fixed on the music box with pupils so large there was little iris to be seen. His tongue danced in and out, and as they passed across shafts of sunlight filtering through the trees Frederic thought he was a rather beautiful beast. Scales glittering, and the stones set in his head sparkling.

”Well, there was a dryer plan. It just didn’t pan out the way we had hoped.” He told her pointedly, face tipping down so he could look at her beneath raised eyebrows. ”What made you go for camp anyway? Should we be practicing our routes a bit more before starting an operation?” He needed people that were good under pressure. But he also needed smart people. So the middle ground was to train smart people to do the smart thing when they were in danger. Or find someone that could keep the smart people on the right path... ”Maybe we should always work in pairs.”

He would talk it over at their next meeting. No use wasting energy on it now. Especially as the mud thickened around their boots. Threatening to suck them right into the swamp. Frederic fought forward, focused so intently on getting one foot in front of the other he didn’t notice if Fanny struggled. He did notice when the music box let out a warbled chime then ceased to play yet again. ”Dammit,” He groaned. Wand wiped out again he blasted a path through mud that caked up to his claves. ”Let’s move it.”

If she couldn’t keep up he’d just have to toss her over his shoulder. They were close enough now that a sprint would see them to the collection point.
Title: Re: No ballerinas here
Post by: Koi on May 19 2019, 07:56 AM
"Because its following behind us with intent to eat?" Fanny rejoined. Maybe not at that precise moment, but all it would take was one sour note, or a hiccup of magic, and it would be after them again. Freddy might have been okay with being eaten by a giant lizard, but Fanny was not. Not at all her ideal was of going out. She had plans for that. Old age as a rich inventor, or with a dramatic bang so no one ever forgot her name or contributions.

Of which she hoped there would be many.

Fanny scowled up at him. "I don't know, dad, maybe because there was a giant, slimy, lizard chasing me!" She'd panicked! The music box going out had never been part of any plan. Fanny would have to take it apart later and figure out why it had failed when she'd needed it most. All the test runs had gone smooth as butter. The thought made her stomach rumble. Buttered scones would have been perfect just then. A some very hot, strong tea.

Maybe a spot of chocolate frog too.

"That's fine, so long as I'm not partnered with Angus. All he does is belch. Disgusting." Fanny was panting. Thighs burning more intensely now that she had to drag her feet out of the mud. This required reaching down to hold tight to her boot top while she yanked her foot free of the muck without losing it.She was lagging behind, Freddy obliviously soldiering on, though the path he cut helped somewhat.

The music box twanged.

"Mince." She groaned behind Freddy's damn. Giving up, Fanny let the mud have her boots and stumbled behind Frederick as fast she could, which wasn't terribly fast. Her legs were half his length, and one of them was being beaten by her music box. Floundering, Fanny let it go, pulling her wand out and setting the noisy thing to float behind her. A few zaps attempting to get it working again.

"Oi!" Fann squealed, her wand jerking to send the music box into the serpent's face as it snapped at her. With a whine, screech, clank and sploing, the bucket came apart against the beast's cheek. So much for putting it to rights later.