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Rían O' Donnell

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Rían O' Donnell

Rían had been hiding himself away in the library a little too much lately. In some ways it was a comfort. His usual hiding spot, where he could have a cup if his favourite tea and put on his headphones, drowning out the world around him with some Irish trad tunes. 

 

And yet, when he had gone there this afternoon his stomach had sunk with an inexplicable feeling of dread. Stopping at the entrance of the library the pit in his stomach deepened. Unable to bring himself inside he turned, dropping his rucksack back at his dorm. After that he had been at a loss as to what he should actually do. After lunch earlier they had a free class. He had caught up on homework and he hadn't felt the drive to get going in the duelling chamber very much these days. And Jack was still....largely unaccounted for. 

 

Eventually he settled on going outside for a walk. After placing his headphones on, his feet carried him out to the lawn. Back on his home island of Aaranmore he was a very outdoorsy person. He lived by the beach, and if he wasn't down there he was on the north of the island, exploring around the light house and the cliffs. He loved being up by the cliffs. That gave him peace. Though he hadn't spent much time in the Hogwarts grounds since first year really. It was alien to him, the great unknown with weird creatures scattered around that could definitely kill him. He wasn't even particularly fond of the lake. It was nice to look at. The expansive black waters held mystery at the very least. 

 

But it wasn't the sea. It wasn't home. 

 

As he walked his knitted jumper rode up. Angrily he shoved it back down. Over the summer break he had definitely put on more pounds than he had been happier than. He had come back to school with a tubbier tummy than he had liked. It only added to his self confidence issues and cause him more self loathing. He had tried to get on the healthy eating band wagon to lose it again, but as someone who's favourite thing was a cup of tea with five sugars, it was making him miserable. And anyway with the stress and upset of the attacks it had promptly been thrown out the window and whatever success he had in losing had been piled back on plus more. 

 

Maybe the walk would do him good. 

 

He just hadn't accounted for the November chill. Cursing to himself he pulled his scarf up on his face and set off to start around the perimeter of the lake, music being directly beamed into his ears.

 

 

@Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

Edited by Rían O' Donnell

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Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

Secrets had never really been Ryszard’s strong suit. He was an excellent liar, and he knew exactly how to cook up the perfect conspiracy theory to get people to believe. Secrets, however, were a much wider issue, and Ryszard found himself grappling with the weight of the truth that Jaxon had left on him; maybe it hadn’t been willingly, and maybe it wasn’t even that much of a secret, but it still left Ryszard feeling weighted down by the truth of the other boy’s reality.

 

It had been the prime thought on his mind ever since his confrontation with Jaxon. He hadn’t spoken to his sister yet, and it was filling his bones up with dread. Another day gone by meant another day he had let her slip away, which was the exact thing Ryszard had been fighting so hard against. It filled his stomach up with a hollowness that didn’t go away, much like the bruises still stained his face.

 

The great outdoors that was provided by Hogwarts didn’t deliver on the kind of quality he was used to back home, but it was the only kind he had so he made do. Walking around the lawn and by the lake had always been a fun pursuit to see who he could spot and make a mockery of, but on this fine November afternoon, he had other things on his mind, as he blew out uneven breaths.

 

Then, he ran right into someone.

 

”Hey, you-“ He started, angrily, before cutting himself off. He recognised the Ravenclaw, and he frowned, before his mind automatically placed him next to Jaxon on most days. It took only a second more to remember his name. “Hey, you’re Rían, right?” He asked, being careful to get the pronunciation right - he knew exactly what kind of a pain that was. “Can I ask you a question?” He rushed on, then continuing without even waiting for Rían’s reply. “Are you a werewolf?”

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Rían O' Donnell

Rían had music being pumped into his brain, and his eyes fixed further along into the lake, where there was a disturbance on the surface in the centre. He had been concentrating on that and moving slow when Ryszard had ran into him. With a grunt he was pulled from what he had been concentrating on. "What th-" 

 

And then he saw. It was @Adrina Althaus-Valerio's twin. The idiot who had decided to piss Jo off the other day in the Great Hall and pay for it. He had to suppress a smile as he stared, and took in Ry's marks and bruises on his face. Good. Maybe he'd keep his mouth shut the next time. 

 

Staring again his pushed his face into a scowl now. How did this guy know his name? That was weird. Nobody really ever bothered with him and then here was this kid actually directly addressing him. Well, that had made him uncomfortable. "Er yeah that's me." He left off the 'why' he actually wanted to tack on, and bit his tongue instead. 

 

He was mulling over that first, and hadn't been totally prepared for Ryszard's question. He hadn't even responded to the first question about asking a question. After barely opening his mouth to say Yes, it was left hanging open when he asked about Rían being a werewolf  

 

"I....what....er what do you mean?" He spluttered trying to swim in the confusion of what Ry had just asked him. Students being turned during the attacks hadn't even occurred to him. Sure people had been hurt. It had been an attack, an assault on the school. Of course people had been hurt, but bitten and turned into werewolves? No. Surely that type of thing didn't happen outside of Professor Foster's classes.

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Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

While randomly asking people if they were a werewolf or not was definitely not the most sensible thing to do, Ryszard found himself doing just that. He didn’t even know if Jaxon and Rían were the kind of friends that would allow the Ravenclaw to have that kind of knowledge - and influence - but he figured it was worth a try. The more he thought about it, the more it made sense that he ought to know as much about werewolves as was possible. It certainly seemed like a better option than approaching a professor and asking about it in the current climate. They might mistake his good intentions.

 

He squinted at the boy, wondering if it was possible that he hadn’t been clear with his incredibly simple question. “I mean...are you a werewolf?” Ryszard repeated the question, slowing his speech slightly. “Do you turn into a wolf every full moon?” He paused, realising that he didn’t really know much about the creatures beyond that. Maybe there was some logic to going through his textbooks, after all.

 

“I think that’s it,” he said, nodding thoughfully, trying to look knowledgable. He didn’t think he’d managed to convince Rían, especially not with the way he was currently staring at Ryszard.

 

All very fishy, indeed.

 

”Well?” He asked, now, growing impatient. “Are you or are you not?” It didn’t occur to Ryszard that maybe the other boy probably wouldn’t be so inclined to tell a complete stranger something so intimate; he was way too busy solving his own problems.

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Rían O' Donnell

Rían still blankly watched his year mate. Not because he was slow at following the conversation, more because he couldn't get over the fact that Ryszard was being so open about it all. 

 

"I know what a werewolf is. I've been to the classes about them. I've read about them." Shrugging he glanced around the grounds to see if there was anything much else going on to hold his attention. 

 

There wasn't. 

 

"Why would I be a werewolf? I was locked in the library with a pack of twonks (except he said a much nastier word) during the attacks." Scowling, he stared back at Ryszard wondering where he was going with this. Offended at the fact he had slowed his speech down like he was speaking with an imbecile. He hadn't convinced Rían he was anyway more competent than himself. Shrugging uncomfortably again he dropped his line of sight down, his voice also dropping down a few octaves. "I was one of the lucky ones I guess. I didn't get hurt" Still it didn't ring through what Ryszard was trying to get through to him. The severity of what had gone on during the attacks hadn't truly hit him. "I didn't realise anyone had been bitten during the attacks.." 

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Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

It was really starting to feel like Ryszard was the only smart one at this school.

 

For some reason, it was not sticking to Rían’s head that Ryszard was talking about real werewolves. He squinted at the other boy, trying to figure out the best way to explain this without accidentally blurting out @Jaxon Sinclair‘s confession. The weight of it had started turning into a burden already, but he wasn’t that much of a wanker — he knew the repercussions that would have for both himself, Jaxon and Adrina. No matter how much he despised his roommate, that wasn’t a step he was willing to take.

 

“I wasn’t in the library, but...” He didn’t know how to complete that sentence to explain that he hadn’t been directly involved in the attacks, but somehow, his life had already been affected as badly as anyone that had been attacked. “I was one of the lucky ones, too,” he said, quirking an eyebrow at the Ravenclaw’s next comment.

 

So, Jaxon hadn’t told him? That was interesting. How was it possible that Ryszard had found out before both his sister and Rían? The thought made him turn up one side of his lips — there was something much worse at play here, and Ryszard would find out if it was the last thing he did.

 

”I mean, surely some of the students were bitten,” he shrugged. “They are werewolves, after all. It’s what they do.”

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Rían O' Donnell

Rían remained quiet, contemplative. 
 
Processing it he sat in silence, making a conscious effort to not stare at his year mate. Instead he distracted himself by plucking blades of grass out of the ground here and there. He weighed up the options. Ryszard wasn't the most trustworthy in the year. But then he wouldn't have a reason to lie really. 

 

Opening his mouth to say something, he shook his head, and closed it again. He couldn't muster up anything to say. Instead he pursed his lips together, thinking of how to word his response. 

 

After a few moments he looked back up to Ry and shrugged "I mean I guess. But..." Shrugging again he trailed off. "What would it mean for the rest of us though? Are we all at risk then?" Asking he looked down again, he wasn't really sure how to feel. These were his schoolmates, now turned into killing machines. It was unsettling to say the least, and didn't really help with the intermittent niggling feeling he had been getting in his chest. 

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Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

It was taking everything in him to keep his mouth shut and not simply blurt out Jaxon’s secret. He didn’t think Rían would believe him, anyways, so he decided against it. It also felt oddly dishonest to Ryszard — compared to his usual dishonesty — and he didn’t feel like indulging in it. He could add to his roommate’s misery some other way.

 

He watched with curiosity as the Ravenclaw appeared to be digesting the news. In the space between their words, Ryszard contemplated the fantasy world where no one had been bitten. It seemed impossible; if there were werewolves, they would bite. It was how Jaxon had turned, and that’s exactly what Ryszard had tried explaining to his roommate. Even if he didn’t want to, he would end up hurting Adrina at some point.

 

“Probably,” he replied when Rían finally spoke. “They don’t stop being werewolves just because they’re the same age as us or our friends and classmates,” he shrugged. Ryszard didn’t know if any other students had been turned, but right now, the only person he was talking about was Jaxon. Even if Rían didn’t get it right then, that would still be Ryszard’s only concern.

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Rían O' Donnell

His eyes were still firmly fixed on the grass. He really was unsure of what to make of all of this. It was a mess. But, way worse than that. Ryszard was laying it all out in front of him, but he wasn't biting. 

 

Inside his heart began to pound with the uncertainty of it all. Everything felt sped up. Too rushed. These people were his friends. Well the word friend was laughable. Only one of them was really a friend, @Jaxon Sinclair. But they were his classmates. People he had to go to school with. The niggle in his chest grew tighter. Like a rope around his dumb pounding heart. Being a human with human emotions sucked.

 

But still he said nothing. His face set into a frown, brow furrowed heavily. Eyes fixed downwards, away from Ryszard's gaze. The silence just stretched out in front of them. 

 

Eventually he began pushing himself to his feet with all the grace and splendour of a baby rhino. He needed to extract himself from the situation ASAP. "I've got to go. I've something to do I forgot about. Sorry for banging into you" He wasn't really sorry. It wasn't his fault anyway it was Ry's, but Rían was a peacekeeper and would say whatever would smooth over the situation. Looking up to Ry finally he gave him a curt nod and turned to slope off up the lawn. 

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Ryszard Althaus-Valerio

It was probably something he had said — it was always something he said — but he watched as the Ravenclaw seemed to be processing something. Ryszard stood by, looking calmer than he had in a while. If his words and arguments could be enough to turn away someone like Rían, then clearly he was doing some good. It ought to be his life’s goal to turn off as many people as possible; Ryszard didn’t think enough people disliked him quite yet.

 

He wasn’t entirely surprised when the other boy suddenly got up from where he had been sitting, and abruptly walked away. Ryszard could clearly see through the excuse, but he didn’t call him out on it. Rían didn’t know Jaxon was a werewolf — yet — and he wouldn’t be finding out from him, but the entire concept of some of their classmates turning into werewolves was clearly causing him some form of distress.

 

Ryszard simply kicked back and sprawled out on the grass.

 

end.

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