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Term 52: May - August 2019 Term Fifty-Two: It Comes (Sept 2098 - June 2099)

 
 
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Old 07-02-2019, 02:07 AM
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Default HoM lesson 2

Several things are different about today's seating and desk arrangements. For one thing, there are no desks. In their places are metal, rectangular tables - long enough to actually be touching each other in rows of five each. On top of the tables are a pile of jagged rocks on one side, and a large white tablecloth covering something else on the other side. On top of the tablecloth's are words painted in black: DO NOT TOUCH!!!

Other than that, everything is normal.

Alice is setting in her usual spot behind her desk - hers is the only desk still in the room. Of course, that also means she has no table. She sits behind it with eyes closed and palms pressed together, meditating. This was something she did at the start of most lessons. If only she could have taken advantage of it when it mattered. Oh well.

Please take your seats, lovely students.


OOC: Welcome. We'll continue in 24 hours!
Arrival
First question!
Part one - Pull the sword
Part two - summon the sword
Summon the Sword plus bonus questions
Class dismissed!
Old 07-03-2019, 11:36 PM   #2 (permalink)



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Patrick walked into the classroom hoping that he could just focus in on the lesson. He did not want to be in class he just wanted to take a break. This term was getting out of hand and he was ready for summer break where he could just get away from it all. Noticing the long tables with stuff on it that said do not touch his brow furrowed. Shaking his head at the question that was forming in his head he greeted their professor, "Hello Professor O'Hara." He took a seat and waited for the class to begin.... somewhat hoping it would take him away from everything going on around the castle.
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Old 07-04-2019, 07:53 AM   #3 (permalink)



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What in Merlin’s socks was this? The setup that Cordelia found as she entered the classroom looked like something that belonged in a geology class or a divination lesson focused on rocks rather than a history classroom. Weird. On the upside, it probably meant they would be doing something fun today. She did not particularly like this subject or the professor so the young lion had rather low expectations for history of magic lessons on most days. ”Hello, Professor O’Hara,” Cordelia greeted the professor as she made her way over to a seat in front of one of the tables. What was under the tablecloths that said do not touch? The fact that touching them was forbidden made the mysteries beneath all the more intriguing. However, the professor would be watching them and there could be protective spells placed on the sheets so for now Cordelia was going to keep her hands to herself and wait until the professor was ready to reveal the plan for the lesson.
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Old 07-05-2019, 02:19 AM   #4 (permalink)


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Her eyes opened as the sound of footsteps against the floor reached her ears. Technically she was not meditating after her eyes opened, but she kept her hands pressed together and her shoulders relaxed. "Good morning, Mr. Dooley," she said with a thin smile to Patrick as he moved to sit behind his seat. She could see a question forming on his mind.

"Hello, Ms. Winklebleck," she said with another thin smile, returned the Gryffindor's greeting. She could tell the Gryffindor had the same curiosity that Mr. Dooley seemed to be itching with, which was completely understandable. This was an unusual setup for History of Magic. Hopefully, it would be a distraction from the horror and madness of recent days.

She waited until the last of the students trudged in through the doors. Then she got up manually close the door. Walking back to her desk, she began the lesson. "Good morning, class. Today's lesson will require focus. Recent events at this school have gotten us all on edge, so I want you all to close your eyes and relax for awhile. You'll be able to focus better if you relax your muscles before starting the lesson. You may begin." Having already meditated before class began, Alice kept her eyes open to make sure the students followed her command.

"You may open your eyes now." She waited for around ten seconds for everyone to open their eyes and focus. "Now. Our first subject for today is a historical English king known by both Muggles and witches. Please raise your hand and share with us your knowledge on King Arthur or any of his legends. Please, in an orderly manner."


ooc: We'll hop right into an activity in 24 hours.

Last edited by Goblinfrog; 07-05-2019 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 07-05-2019, 05:42 AM   #5 (permalink)



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The Gryffindor squeezed her eyes tightly closed and took a few calming deep breaths when the professor told them to. It was difficult to feel truly relaxed these days, given the situation with the mist. Relax, Cordelia. The mist probably won’t get into the classroom right now. Focus. Cordelia opened her eyes when the professor said they could. King Arthur? She had heard some of those legends before. It was the kind of stories she had liked hearing when she was little. The young Gryffindor raised her hand and waited for her turn to speak before giving her answer. ”Muggle legend has it that Merlin put a sword in a stone and that whoever could pull the sword out of the stone would be the rightful king of England. Many tried to remove the sword, but no one could pull it from the stone. Merlin brought Arthur before the sword, Arthur was able to successfully remove the sword, and he became the king of England. Some say the sword was enchanted so that only Arthur would be able to remove it. Another legend has the sword Excalibur given to Arthur by the Lady of the lake.” There were stones in front of her, so was the mystery item beneath the cloth… a sword? WERE THEY GOING TO PLAY WITH SWORDS? HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE? Cordelia raised her hand again. ”Will we be doing any reenactments of Arthurian legends today to connect to this period of history? Like, with swords and all that?” She wanted to try swinging a sword around. Maybe this class wasn’t so boring after all.
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Old 07-05-2019, 06:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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History of Magic was one of the rare classes where Tina liked both the subject and the professor who taught it. Normally, that was enough to make her look forward to the lessons, but lately, she couldn’t look forward to anything… except going home. She longed for France more and more with each passing moment, so much so that she’d started literally marking off the days until the end of the term when she could finally get out of this madhouse! But… what if the mist was still around at the end of the term? What if she stayed trapped at Hogwarts forever? Tina was so distracted that she'd almost forgotten to say hello to Professor O'Hara upon her arrival and hastily mumbled a greeting. Sorry, Professor! Nothing personal, she just… had a lot on her mind.

She eyed the stones and table covering on her desk with only a fraction of her usual curiosity. She couldn't even begin to guess what they were doing there, but at least in this class, she could trust that whatever their purpose, it wouldn't be anything too chaotic. Hmm… maybe a nice, calm History of Magic lesson was just the thing she needed to take her mind off her worries. Tina tried to focus her attention on the professor as the lesson began… in a very unexpected way. She blinked at the professor's odd request. Honestly, she didn't think this exercise would help her focus, but it wasn't worth debating. *She closed her eyes as instructed, trying to block out her ominous thoughts and pay attention to the task at hand. To her surprise, she did feel a little bit better when it was over.

Okay, so apparently they were talking about King Arthur today. Suddenly the stones on the desks made a lot more sense, and Tina's thoughts immediately went to Excalibur. Did that mean there was a miniature version of the sword in the stone under the white table covering? That was the only thing she could think would be there! Before she could raise her hand to speak, that little Gryffindor girl (Cordelia) beat her to it. Tina was 99% sure Excalibur was the answer O'Hara was looking for, but there was nothing she could think of to add to that answer. Even if there was, she wouldn't. She preferred to come up with her own answer rather than jump off of someone else's.

She searched her knowledge of Arthurian legend. and the next thing that came to mind was the Round Table. Her hand went up, and she said when called on, "King Arthur had a Round Table around which he and his knights would gather - so designed to symbolize that all who sat there had equal status." To be honest, Tina felt Hogwarts should adopt the same concept. Better than this broken hierarchy where the loud and aggressive were rewarded and the hard-working and honorable ignored! "There is some debate about the table's origin. Some versions of the legend say Arthur himself created the table; others say it was designed by Merlin for King Uther, Arthur's father, and Arthur inherited it later. One legend also states that the Round Table seated twelve people with a thirteenth seat called the Siege Perilous left empty to symbolize a certain famous betrayal. It's said that only the knight destined for success in the quest for the Grail could safely sit in the Siege Perilous."

Tina couldn't help but feel a little sheepish as she finished speaking. That answer was… a lot longer than intended! Sorry, people! She really wasn't trying to be a know-it-all; she just got a bit overeager because the connotations of equal standing and betrayal struck a chord with her.
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Old 07-06-2019, 01:11 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Ben was certainly not expecting the lesson to begin with just sitting quietly and relaxing, but he wasn't opposed to it either. Silence was always appreciated. So he closed his eyes, though he wasn't sure he could actually relax. There was just so much running through his head all the time, and it didn't stop when his eyes closed. Still, he tried, though he was a little bit relieved when the professor gave them permission to stop, and then the lesson began.

His quill was back in his hand, ready to write his notes. King Arthur and the legends about him was going to be a topic for this lesson? Intriguing. It was certainly not a subject he was well-versed in, but he was of course familiar with the most famous aspects.

He carefully scribbled down a few notes from what a couple of other students had said, and, since it was relatively quiet, his free hand rose to offer an answer of his own. "According to some of the legends, King Arthur was betrayed by his wife Guinevere and his friend Lancelot. The exact circumstances and consequences of that betrayal sometimes vary depending on the legend, though I believe the most common one leads to the downfall of the kingdom."
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He nodded his head as he was told he needed to relax. That was a bit hard but he figured the worst that happened he was still stressed after trying to relax. closing his eyes he began to picture the rolling fields of Kentucky, his grandparents farm, and nope there it was fog--mist--whatever you wanted to call it. He squeezed his eyes tighter. Next thing he knew it was just the farm and he felt slightly better than he had felt.

Listening to Professor O'Hara's question he was ready to answer it. "Well what intrigues me about the legend is just that, most people argue over if it was actually true or not. In the muggle world people make movies, and modern culture about King Arthur. Yet, no one actually believes that King Arthur was a thing he's just some urban legend to them. Kind of funny that they argue over it so intensely." he had to try and find the humor in something because he sure wasn't finding it here at Hogwarts.
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After Daisy had performed the meditative ritual, she began to focus on thinking about the question that Professor O'Hara had just asked and soon she raised her hand to answer as best as she could.

"A very prominent figure in Arthurian legend is Morgan le Fay, also known as Morgana. In most stories, she is King Arthur's older half-sister through either his mother Igraine or his father Uther, depending on the story. Sometimes, she is the ruler of Avalon and was there when King Arthur died. Morgan has a rivalry with King Arthur due to the fact that she firmly believes that she is the rightful heir to Camelot's throne. She is a very powerful sorceress with shape-shifting and healing abilities."
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SPOILER!!: Cordelia
The Gryffindor squeezed her eyes tightly closed and took a few calming deep breaths when the professor told them to. It was difficult to feel truly relaxed these days, given the situation with the mist. Relax, Cordelia. The mist probably won’t get into the classroom right now. Focus. Cordelia opened her eyes when the professor said they could. King Arthur? She had heard some of those legends before. It was the kind of stories she had liked hearing when she was little. The young Gryffindor raised her hand and waited for her turn to speak before giving her answer. ”Muggle legend has it that Merlin put a sword in a stone and that whoever could pull the sword out of the stone would be the rightful king of England. Many tried to remove the sword, but no one could pull it from the stone. Merlin brought Arthur before the sword, Arthur was able to successfully remove the sword, and he became the king of England. Some say the sword was enchanted so that only Arthur would be able to remove it. Another legend has the sword Excalibur given to Arthur by the Lady of the lake.” There were stones in front of her, so was the mystery item beneath the cloth… a sword? WERE THEY GOING TO PLAY WITH SWORDS? HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE? Cordelia raised her hand again. ”Will we be doing any reenactments of Arthurian legends today to connect to this period of history? Like, with swords and all that?” She wanted to try swinging a sword around. Maybe this class wasn’t so boring after all.


Oh how clever this one was. She'd guessed right away what today's activity would be about. Alice gave her a small smile. "You're quite right on both counts. For today's lesson, we will be focusing on both versions of the story - the one where Arthur pulls Excalibur from the stone, and the one where the Lady of the Lake presents him with it." And they would be doing more than merely discussing it.

SPOILER!!: Tina
History of Magic was one of the rare classes where Tina liked both the subject and the professor who taught it. Normally, that was enough to make her look forward to the lessons, but lately, she couldn’t look forward to anything… except going home. She longed for France more and more with each passing moment, so much so that she’d started literally marking off the days until the end of the term when she could finally get out of this madhouse! But… what if the mist was still around at the end of the term? What if she stayed trapped at Hogwarts forever? Tina was so distracted that she'd almost forgotten to say hello to Professor O'Hara upon her arrival and hastily mumbled a greeting. Sorry, Professor! Nothing personal, she just… had a lot on her mind.

She eyed the stones and table covering on her desk with only a fraction of her usual curiosity. She couldn't even begin to guess what they were doing there, but at least in this class, she could trust that whatever their purpose, it wouldn't be anything too chaotic. Hmm… maybe a nice, calm History of Magic lesson was just the thing she needed to take her mind off her worries. Tina tried to focus her attention on the professor as the lesson began… in a very unexpected way. She blinked at the professor's odd request. Honestly, she didn't think this exercise would help her focus, but it wasn't worth debating. *She closed her eyes as instructed, trying to block out her ominous thoughts and pay attention to the task at hand. To her surprise, she did feel a little bit better when it was over.

Okay, so apparently they were talking about King Arthur today. Suddenly the stones on the desks made a lot more sense, and Tina's thoughts immediately went to Excalibur. Did that mean there was a miniature version of the sword in the stone under the white table covering? That was the only thing she could think would be there! Before she could raise her hand to speak, that little Gryffindor girl (Cordelia) beat her to it. Tina was 99% sure Excalibur was the answer O'Hara was looking for, but there was nothing she could think of to add to that answer. Even if there was, she wouldn't. She preferred to come up with her own answer rather than jump off of someone else's.

She searched her knowledge of Arthurian legend. and the next thing that came to mind was the Round Table. Her hand went up, and she said when called on, "King Arthur had a Round Table around which he and his knights would gather - so designed to symbolize that all who sat there had equal status." To be honest, Tina felt Hogwarts should adopt the same concept. Better than this broken hierarchy where the loud and aggressive were rewarded and the hard-working and honorable ignored! "There is some debate about the table's origin. Some versions of the legend say Arthur himself created the table; others say it was designed by Merlin for King Uther, Arthur's father, and Arthur inherited it later. One legend also states that the Round Table seated twelve people with a thirteenth seat called the Siege Perilous left empty to symbolize a certain famous betrayal. It's said that only the knight destined for success in the quest for the Grail could safely sit in the Siege Perilous."

Tina couldn't help but feel a little sheepish as she finished speaking. That answer was… a lot longer than intended! Sorry, people! She really wasn't trying to be a know-it-all; she just got a bit overeager because the connotations of equal standing and betrayal struck a chord with her.


Now Tina was a student who always seemed prepared for Alice's questions. Her answers were always thoughtful and often addressed topics within the larger topic that most other students (and even some professors) would not have thought to mention or even know. Today was no exception, with her mentioning the round table and what the number could symbolize in certain contexts. Alice nodded with approval. "I am surprised that any of my students would know about Seife Perilous. Two points to Ravenclaw."

SPOILER!!: Ben
Ben was certainly not expecting the lesson to begin with just sitting quietly and relaxing, but he wasn't opposed to it either. Silence was always appreciated. So he closed his eyes, though he wasn't sure he could actually relax. There was just so much running through his head all the time, and it didn't stop when his eyes closed. Still, he tried, though he was a little bit relieved when the professor gave them permission to stop, and then the lesson began.

His quill was back in his hand, ready to write his notes. King Arthur and the legends about him was going to be a topic for this lesson? Intriguing. It was certainly not a subject he was well-versed in, but he was of course familiar with the most famous aspects.

He carefully scribbled down a few notes from what a couple of other students had said, and, since it was relatively quiet, his free hand rose to offer an answer of his own. "According to some of the legends, King Arthur was betrayed by his wife Guinevere and his friend Lancelot. The exact circumstances and consequences of that betrayal sometimes vary depending on the legend, though I believe the most common one leads to the downfall of the kingdom."


She was expecting at least one of the students to mention this part of the story, which was the part most favored in dramatic retellings in both the witch and muggle versions. "That's correct. Most versions of the tales of King Arthur end on a rather tragic note and they almost universally include this betrayal from the two people closest to King Arthur: his wife Guinevere and his best friend Lancelot."

SPOILER!!: Patrick
He nodded his head as he was told he needed to relax. That was a bit hard but he figured the worst that happened he was still stressed after trying to relax. closing his eyes he began to picture the rolling fields of Kentucky, his grandparents farm, and nope there it was fog--mist--whatever you wanted to call it. He squeezed his eyes tighter. Next thing he knew it was just the farm and he felt slightly better than he had felt.

Listening to Professor O'Hara's question he was ready to answer it. "Well what intrigues me about the legend is just that, most people argue over if it was actually true or not. In the muggle world people make movies, and modern culture about King Arthur. Yet, no one actually believes that King Arthur was a thing he's just some urban legend to them. Kind of funny that they argue over it so intensely." he had to try and find the humor in something because he sure wasn't finding it here at Hogwarts.


Alice gave a small nod. "Indeed. To most Muggles, King Arthur was only ever a legend. Even the ones who believe in him tend to believe that most of the stories are false - believing in only a version of King Arthur that excludes any magical element. It's the same attitude that has them believing Bigfoot to be merely a myth, despite how many hundreds of sightings occur every year." MACUSA and the Canadian government weren't doing that good hiding those creatures, if you asked her.

SPOILER!!: Daisy
After Daisy had performed the meditative ritual, she began to focus on thinking about the question that Professor O'Hara had just asked and soon she raised her hand to answer as best as she could.

"A very prominent figure in Arthurian legend is Morgan le Fay, also known as Morgana. In most stories, she is King Arthur's older half-sister through either his mother Igraine or his father Uther, depending on the story. Sometimes, she is the ruler of Avalon and was there when King Arthur died. Morgan has a rivalry with King Arthur due to the fact that she firmly believes that she is the rightful heir to Camelot's throne. She is a very powerful sorceress with shape-shifting and healing abilities."


"Yes, and Morgana is often cast as the antagonist in King Arthur legends - along with Mordred, a sometimes-former knight of the round table and Arthur's nephew. Her goal was to rule the kingdom. I sometimes wonder what her policies would have been. Probably imperialistic, but we can never know, as the legends don't go into much detail there."


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


The fact that everyone knew the story of King Arthur made her, again, proud. Her students were well informed young citizens. After they had all spoken, she raised her hand for silence and then summarized the King Arthur story herself.

"Arthur ruled what is today known as Britain (our home) during the fifth century. He is thought to have led Britain in the defense against Saxon invaders, though most Muggles today believe that everything about Arthur was a myth. We know better. The Dark witch Morgan le Fay was his half-sister, but his parentage is unknown, as is whether he was a Muggle or not. I would theorize that yes, he was a Muggle, but it is up to interpretation. While he wielded a magical sword, there is no instance in either our versions or the Muggle versions of this man performing magic. Still, it is possible that he did it in private or that he did it and it was never transmitted into the legends." Or that he was just terrible at performing magic, such as herself. Just thinking that made her mentally cringe. She was going to have to get better.

"The great wizard Merlin was a key member of the Court of King Arthur. The Knights of the Round Table were also an important part of the Court, and included Sir Lancelot, Sir Bedivere and Sir Percivale. Wizards and witches commonly hold that this order included a wizard, our very own Sir Cadogan, who got the position by being a friend of Merlin. Tellings of the story of King Arthur differed between the Muggle and wizarding worlds, in that Sir Cadogan was included in wizarding versions, but absent in Muggle ones. All tellings (both magical and Muggle) express an optimism that one day King Arthur will return - when Britain needs him the most."

Alice stood from her seat for no other reason than her legs felt tired sitting still for so long. She'd sit back down in a minute. "Now, please ignore the rocks on your left, and gently remove the white cloth on your right." She waited until they did so. Underneath this cloth was a miniature sword in the stone. The stone was about two feet long and one foot wide, with a cute little sword (more like a dagger) with a golden hilt sticking out of it. Diamonds and rubies were fastened to this golden hilt. It was goblin's gold, with goblin magic infused into it - as indeed the magic was infused throughout the stones.

"These swords are supposed to represent Excalibur, the legendary sword which only King Arthur could pull from the sword. Only his worthiness to be king allowed him to break the enchantment hanging over the stone. For the first part of our activity, I would like you to try think of a way o get that sword out of the stone. You can try to do so physically, or through magic. You can even ask me permission to use your wand to summon an object in the castle if you think it will help you unloosen the sword."

She smiled. "You may begin."


ooc: You can do this in one longer post or in two shorter or medium sized ones. Don't roleplay whether or not your student succeeded in pulling the sword - only their idea and attempt. This is only part one of the activity.
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:13 PM   #11 (permalink)



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This was one of those rare occasions where Nettie actually kind of knew what the professor was talking about. She'd heard of this Sword in the Stone myth before - but she hadn't learned much more about it other than it was some kid who pulled out the sword and then became the king. She had never really thought of it as more than a myth, but like most muggle myths, she wasn't all that surprised that it seemed to have a magical component to it. After all, Merlin had been involved, but it was interesting to theorize how he helped Arthur get the sword out of the stone...

Looking at her own model, she decided right away that she was going to try and physically pull it out. The young girl was stronger than she looked, but mostly it was because that was how the myth had gone - if you were worthy, you could do it WITHOUT magic. Or, at least, that was what the muggles had believed. So she was going to do it the muggle way.

Standing up so she could get a good stance, she set the stone in front of her and she cracked her knuckles in preparation. She took the hilt with both hands - and TUGGED.
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Old 07-07-2019, 08:59 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Tina wasn't the least bit surprised to learn that Excalibur was the subject of today's lesson. What did surprise her was getting house points for an answer that wasn't directly related to that topic, but it was the good kind of surprise. She beamed, giving Professor O'Hara a nod of thanks so as not to interrupt the lesson. Listening with rapt attention, she had just enough time to jot down a few notes before the instruction came to remove the cloths on the desks. Already? Wow, this class was moving fast!

She lifted the cover and - she was right! It was a miniature version of the sword in the stone. The points from earlier already had Tina feeling pleased with herself, but correctly guessing the object made her feel even more smug. Now if only she could correctly guess how to get the sword out of the stone… She thought for several moments. The most obvious solution was to just pull the sword and see what happened, but that seemed a little too easy. There was probably more to it than that.

Then she recalled that Professor O'Hara said they could use magic. Maybe that was the answer, but which spell should she use? Could she try summoning the sword? Probably not. If there were enchantments on the real stone, it stood to reason that there were enchantments on this stone that would prevent summoning (or else summon the stone along with the sword). Then she thought of trying to break the enchantments on the stone, but it was a longshot. It would be hard to guess the correct counterspell when she didn't know what kind of magic was used in the first place, and it seemed unlikely that a simple Finite Incantatem would work.

More thoughts ran through Tina's mind, each one more far-fetched than the last. Transfigure the sword into something that wouldn't fit the stone… shrink the sword and hope it would slip out? No, no, no! That sounded ridiculous! Come on! Think, Tina, think! she told herself sternly. She remembered what O'Hara had said. Only Arthur could pull Excalibur from.the stone because he was worthy to be king, but how did the stone know he was worthy? Did the stone's magic function like that of the Sorting Hat where it could see into one's mind? Or maybe it was more like a patronus charm, and good thoughts, like those of a worthy king, fuelled its magic?

That was it! Maybe by thinking like a worthy king, Tina could budge the sword. Now the question remained, what made a worthy king? She thought about it carefully. Compassion for sure, and dedication, courage, honesty… and humility, none of that thirst for power or popularity nonsense. A lot of leaders overlooked that part. Tina searched her memories for times in her life when she'd shown those qualities, and channeling all her focus into those thoughts, she stood up and gave the sword a firm yank. Did that work? Did she do it?
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Old 07-09-2019, 04:18 AM   #13 (permalink)



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Valencia grinned. She loved all the stories of King Arthur. The real and the muggle stories. She carefully studied the stone next to her. Wouldn't the best option be to break the stone? That was always the best way to get something unstuck -- break what was holding it?

She knocked on the stone to try and determine if that was possible.
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Old 07-09-2019, 02:51 PM   #14 (permalink)


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Daisy removed the white cloth and gazed thoughtfully at the miniature sword in the stone. As she did so, Daisy thought about the amount of cathexis that would be required to remove the sword from the stone in a non-magical manner.

The Hufflepuff decided to think of all the good deeds she had performed during her tenure at Hogwarts ranging from the smallest of tasks as in helping someone during lessons or following class rules to the ones that required a lot of heart such as helping to defeat Inferi.

Daisy carefully stood up and with both hands on the handle of the sword, she closed her eyes thought of her past good deeds and pulled.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:05 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Too busy with writing down notes, the Ravenclaw did not even bother coming up with an answer for the first question. He knew about king Arthur and the sword in the stone like many of them from having read it in a couple of books where he was mentioned in. Also, which witch or wizard did not known Merlin?

As he took away the white cloth from his desk and dropped it next to him on the ground, Dorian's suspicion about what was under the cloth was far from right. He looked at the miniature sword in stone and thought it looked quite cute. "Professor O'Hara can we keep these?" he asked because it would look good in his room at home.

Anyway, Dorian thought about the possibilities that could remove the sword and the first thought that came to his mind was the Bombarda spell. But then not just the stone but also the sword could break and he did not want that.

Or should he try and pull it out with his bare hands? According to legend, the sword could only be pulled out by someone who was worthy which meant that it was definitely not him. Could anyone imagine? Him? Worthy? He snorted at his own thoughts before he got up from his seat and examined it.

Mweh, might as well try it right? Without much thought , the sixth year grabbed the golden hilt with diamonds and rubies attached to it and pulled.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:44 PM   #16 (permalink)


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Alice watched as the students focused on their little swords in stones. She was a little surprised that no one used their wand to try and enchant the swords out of the stone. That wouldn't have worked, but she wouldn't have been surprised if they tried.

"Many men tried to pull the sword from the stone before Arthur. They all failed - every last one of them! It did not matter how strong they were nor how cunning. The reason was because Excalibur would only be wielded by a man worthy of the throne. The sword chose the king in a similar way to how our wands choose us. Only a good, selfless person could pull Excalibur from the throne. A person who would rule with the common good of the citizenry in mind, with no regard to fame and power."

By now they must have understood, right? She'd elaborate just a little more. "I've enchanted your swords (with the help of a person more advanced in magical skill than I) so that they would only come out if you are concentrating on good deeds. I believe your swords will come out if you were doing something nice for someone shortly before coming in here. If you were rude to anyone today, then your sword may be stuck - whether or not you are focusing on good deeds. Think on the most recent good act you did for someone. Not something that you did years ago, but something very recent. In one of the most popular versions of the King Arthur story, young Arthur pulls the sword from the stone because he needed it in the moment - not for himself, but for his stepbrother - who needed a sword for a jousting tournament. Arthur had no idea of the sword's worth and he was certainly not thinking of noble deeds he had performed years ago. It was what he was doing in the present that mattered, because what you do in your day to day lives when you are not expecting to be tested - that is what defines who you really are. So I suppose I will know which ones of you have been especially kind, recently, and which ones of you have not." She smiled thinly. Did that make anyone nervous? It wouldn't affect the outcome either way, as the sword did not judge nervousness. "Don't worry, I am sure that I would fail to pull it if I tried. I am not judging you. And yes, Dorian, you may keep your sword if you can pull it. The edges are blunt because I care about your safety." No sharp toys for children, not in Alice's watch.

"Now then!" And she waved her wand towards the desks. Every stone that had not been pulled from the stone vanished - along with the respective swords. The desks ALSO vanished! In their places were small pools about as wide as the desks. The rocks which had stood on the left side of the desks before now stood in a circle around the pools. The water in these pools was so deep that you could not see the bottom.

Alice smiled widely. She quite enjoyed being able to perform magic in her classes. She might have been going overboard, but this was a new and exciting sensation. "There is another story about Excalibur. In this version, the Lady of the Lake appears to bestow the magic sword Excalibur to Arthur. In the Post-Vulgate tradition, she is presented as an early benefactor of King Arthur who grants him Excalibur when his original sword is damaged. She is later beheaded by Sir Balin as a result of a kin feud between them (she blames him for the death of her brother, while he blames her for the death of his mother who had been burned at the stake, in addition to for how, as he says, "by enchantment and sorcery she has been the destroyer of many good knights") and a dispute over an enchanted sword. Modern retellings often omit that episode. But anyway, for our second activity, I want you to try and procure a sword from the pool in front of you. You can try anything you like. The rules for taking a sword from the water are different than the rules for taking a sword from the stone. You may stick your hand in the water...but be careful." Heh heh heh.

OOC: I couldn't tell you for sure if your student was able to take the sword out of the stone. If your character is generally nice and selfless to others in their day to day lives, then they will manage to pull the sword out. You can roleplay that happening. Keep in mind that Alice is relatively new to spellcasting, so there is one glitch in her spell. If your student works out a lot and is fit, then it might not matter if they are rude - the spell won't be strong enough to stop them from taking the sword. Alice won't know this, but her next spell (over the water) will.
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:29 AM   #17 (permalink)



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She was right! Swords! SWORDS! This was so awesome. She was good at wielding pointy objects. Cordelia went for the brute force option of trying to pull the little sword out of the stone. She worked out a lot to stay fit for quidditch, even though they couldn’t fly because of the mist, so surely she would be able to pull such a small sword out. Other than casting bombarda on the stone, pulling by hand was the only thing she could think of to do. Attempting to blow up the rock sounded like a bad idea, so pulling it was. What had she done to be nice to others lately? Uh… Well, she had helped a firstie get back into the common room. That was a good deed, right? The young Gryffindor tugged as hard as she could at the sword, and eventually she was able to remove it. Wow! She was totally going to keep this as a souvenir. Who wouldn’t want a miniature sword?

The professor… wasn’t skilled enough in magic to enchant the swords herself? But she was a professor, and professors were supposed to be good at magic. Something didn’t check out there. What if Professor O’Hara was secretly a squib? Wait no that was a silly idea, the professor could obviously do magic. Anyway, the professor was letting them play with swords which was super cool. Oooh, they were getting swords out of water now? WAS A HAND GOING TO COME OUT OF THE POOL? The rules for this one would be different. Interesting. Cordelia peered into the pool before her. She couldn’t see the bottom, so she was going to try a different approach on this one. Pulling out her wand, Cordelia attempted to summon the sword. ”Accio sword!” Would that work? Or did the enchantment prevent the swords from being summoned?
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:09 PM   #18 (permalink)


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Alice watched for a little while as the students attempted to summon another little Excalibur from the pool in front of them. She watched as Cordelia attempted a summoning charm. It was a good idea, but wouldn't work. "I'll give you all a clue as to how to get the sword," she said after a little while, standing from her chair and leaning forward with her palms on the desk surface. "The Lady, in many versions of the legend, would take Arthur with her to her home in Avalon when he was near his death. While this was not at the same time that she presented him with the sword, it was something she always knew would happen. To summon Excalibur, you must make a small sacrifice. Offer something to the water and the lady shall present you with the sword." If the sacrifice was worthy, then the sword would come. Otherwise, the one doing the offering would only get a rude poke from the enchanted hands in the water.

"Don't worry about what you sacrifice, it will be returned to you at the end of the lesson."

Moving on...

"While you are all trying to procure a sword from the water, I want you all to think back on the legends of King Arthur. You are all very well versed in the legends. But I wonder if you are also as well versed in the stories which are not the most famous. So here are a couple of bonus questions - you can answer one or both, totally up to you." She still required an answer, but she'd let them just answer one if they preferred - seeing as they were all still trying to procure the sword."Name one of Arthur's Knights of the Round Table who is NOT named Lancelot, and tell me a little about him. That is one question you can answer - or otherwise, tell me one legend of Arthur which does not involve Lancelot's scandal and which does not involve Arthur pulling the Sword from the Stone or receiving the Sword from the Lady in the Lake. You may answer both for bonus points."


ooc: You can decide whether your student's sacrifice gets an Excalibur or a poke.
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Old 07-12-2019, 05:07 AM   #19 (permalink)


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Daisy had around her neck a gold necklace that had been given to her by her father a month before he died a few years ago. She carefully undid the clasp and held the precious piece of jewellery in her left hand as she submerged it in the water. She gently released the necklace and removed her hand from the pool of water. With bated breath, Daisy waited to see if the little sacrifice was indeed worthy. After a few nervous moments, she was rewarded with an Excalibur. The girl's eyes shone with delight. Hopefully, she wouldn't have to wait too long for the return of her necklace.

Daisy then thought about the various Knights of the Round Table and then raised her hand. "Sir Agravain was the nephew of King Arthur who found out and exposed to King Arthur, the love affair Queen Guinevere's and Sir Lancelot. He was slain by Lancelot because of his actions."
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Old 07-12-2019, 04:45 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Tina focused all her thoughts on her past good deeds as she pulled… making presents for her friends, helping younger students with their homework, standing up for Myrtle at the death day party earlier this term… but all she succeeded in was causing a sharp pain in her arm. The sword remained firmly stuck in the stone. Blink, blink. How did that happen? She may not be the most bubbly person in the world, but she wasn't exactly unkind either. As Professor O'Hara explained, it made sense. She'd been focused on her past good deeds instead of her recent ones. The problem was she couldn't think of any good deeds she'd done so far today.

She was discouraged. Maybe Professor O'Hara wouldn't judge her, but she suspected some of the other students would… and she wasn't in the mood for it. She'd always considered herself a good person, but now she wasn't so sure. It was sad when even a plastic sword doubted her worthiness! Trying to push her disappointment aside, she listened to the lecture. She was a bit surprised to learn that Professor O'Hara had help enchanting the swords, but she didn't fault her for it. If anything, it just made her more curious about how the enchantments worked. It must be a very complicated method of magic if a Hogwarts professor needed help with it!

Tina was relieved to learn that the rules for taking a sword from the water were different from the stone. Maybe she'd have better luck with this method… she hoped! She stared into the pool, contemplating the best approach. The first idea that occurred to her was to try to summon the sword, but that seemed too obvious. Surely the enchantments in place would prevent that. Maybe there was a way to summon it wandlessly? She had never successfully performed wandless magic before, but she supposed there was a first time for everything. She held her hand over the water, concentrating with all her strength, hoping against hope that the sword would emerge into her awaiting hand… but nothing happened. Maybe her hand needed to be in the water in order to summon the sword? It seemed logical, but something about the way O'Hara warned them to be careful made her hesitate. There was no telling what was in that water or if it was even real water at all. For all she knew, it might be some poisonous substance meant to look like water. Whatever the danger might be, she wasn't willing to find out!

Tina bit her lip, lost in thought. If she couldn't summon the sword by traditional means, maybe there was a way to transfigure the water into the sword… *but if there was, she didn't know the spell. She was almost ready to give up when she heard Professor O'Hara's hint. A sacrifice… okay, that made sense, but what could she offer the water? Tina didn't have a lot, and most of her possessions were upstairs in her dorm. She absentmindedly fiddled with bracelet on her arm, and - that was it, her bracelet! It wasn't anything fancy, just a string of purple clay beads designed to look like butterflies, but it was special to her because she made it herself and it reminded her of someone who was like a father to her, someone who'd sacrificed more in a few short years than most did in a lifetime. It seemed only the least she could do.

She slipped the bea welt off her wrist and let it drop into the water. After a couple of tense moments, a miniature sword emerged, and Tina beamed as she picked it up. She finally did it! Satisfied with her efforts, she turned her attention to the question asked. "There was Sir Bedivere," she said, giving the first name that popped into her head. "He was King Arthur's marshall and one of the few survivors of the Battle of Camlann. In some versions of the legend, he was tasked with returning Excalibur to the Lady of the Lake, and after Arthur's death, he became a hermit."
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:38 PM   #21 (permalink)



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Interesting, they needed to make a small sacrifice to the lake to get Excalibur. What did she have that she could sacrifice? Most of her school supplies were not waterproof and wouldn’t mean enough to her for it to be a sacrifice, so that was out. She observed Daisy and Tina both sacrifice jewelry items. The only jewelry she was wearing was her medical alert bracelet that identified her as a type 1 diabetic, and wearing it was of utmost importance for her safety. Cordelia couldn’t give up her insulin pump or any of her other diabetes supplies as those were literally a matter of life or death and also not waterproof enough to submerge in a lake. Those would probably be a worthy sacrifice, but her life was more important than a class activity. It sounded like Arthur had eventually given his life to the Lady of the Lake in this legend. What she needed to sacrifice was something that represented her life, but not anything that by sacrificing would actually end her life. Cordelia pulled out her unicorn diabetes supply case and opened it up. She took out her lancing device that she used to test her blood sugar, put the needle end to her finger, and pressed the button to prick her finger. Removing the lancing device and placing in back in her supply case, Cordelia squeezed a single drop of blood onto her finger. ”The lake demands a sacrifice!” She shouted dramatically. Cordelia squatted down by the lake and touched her bloody finger to the water, then swirled it around a bit to make sure the blood came off in the water. Her blood was something that she needed to live, and testing her blood sugar with it was one part of what she needed to do to be her own endocrine pancreas to keep herself alive. Blood represented her life in many ways. Soon enough, a hand presented her a miniature Excalibur. Cordelia grinned as she accepted the sword. The lake accepted blood sacrifices! She wondered if the professor had intended for the lake to accept blood. The lake could keep her blood sacrifice at the end of the lesson. Not wanting to waste a perfectly good finger prick, Cordelia got the rest of testing supplies out, put a test strip into her blood glucose meter, and squeezed her finger again to get enough blood from her finger to the test strip. A few seconds later, the number appeared on the screen of her meter. All good. Now, what did she know about Arthur’s knights? ”Sir Percival is known for being one of the knights to quest for the Holy Grail in some legends.” Beyond that…. She couldn’t actually think of any other stories related to Sir Percival. ”Morded, who in some legends if Arthur’s illegitimate son, eventually kills Arthur.” Mordred was not a knight, but there was only so much Arthurian legend she could remember. In the end they were all stupid and betrayed and killed each other or something like that.
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Old 07-14-2019, 02:20 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Today's lesson was weirder than usual somehow and Gunnar wasn't entirely here for it. He knew a little bit about the legends of King Arthur of Camelot, but he wasn't entirely too sure that these stories were any more than that. And he thought that History of Magic was a class based in fact.

He did little in the way of note-taking, but it was the series of activities that he was finding difficult to get on board with. Even though O'Hara said she wasn't judging them, it sure seemed like it to him. Wasn't being a good person all sort of relative? It seemed like there was a sliding scale at least. And how good of a person did one have to be to qualify? Not to mention what one person considered to be rude, another might just consider it to be bluntly honest. And he hadn't been focusing on doing good deeds before class began, because.... who did that?

It took a little effort but Gunnar was able to pull the little sword from the stone. But was it due to being a perceived good person or because he had good upper body strength? Who knew. He did have really strong arms from being a Quidditch beater.

And then another "test" to retrieve the sword from the water. He vaguely knew this story about the lady of the lake, but how to best go about this?Gunnar peered into the water a moment, contemplating, then soon glanced over at the younger girl next to him who tried a summoning charm with no luck. Hmm. He tried to think about what other spell might be useful when O'Hara caught his attention as she began to speak and give them a hint. A sacrifice?

"It's not really a sacrifice if it gets returned." Just saying. But what could he offer, if he wanted to play along? He didn't really have anything on his person and there wasn't anything in his school bag but his class supplies. Well, that would have to be it then.

He picked up his History of Magic textbook and dropped it into the water with a large SPLASH. That was a sacrifice, wasn't it? He might not pass the class or his OWL without it, not that he was planning on taking the class at NEWT level. And not that he'd be too bothered to truly sacrifice that book.... But he waited for his sword and peered down into the water. "....ouch!" That really was rude. And he was the one being judged here?
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Old 07-15-2019, 02:10 AM   #23 (permalink)


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An approving nod in Daisy's direction as she mentioned Sir Agravaine. "Ah, Sir Agravaine. Yes, you're right on all counts. He is first mentioned in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, where he referred to as Agravaine of the Hard Hand. And unfortunately, he was indeed slain by Lancelot upon his discovery." Very unfortunate. Alice related to Agravaine.

Another nod of approval went towards Tina, who clearly knew her legends. " You are right on all counts. Bedivere and Arthur are among the few survivors of the Battle of Camlann. After the battle, at the request of the tragically fallen Arthur, Bedivere casts away Excalibur - though not in the lake of the Lady, as Arthur requested. When he reported that nothing in particular happened, King Arthur admonished him, for Arthur knows that the mystical sword would summon the Lady. Finally, Sir Bedivere casted the sword into the water, at which the Lady's hand arose and caught the sword mid-air. Upon the death of Arthur, Bedivere entered a hermitage, as you mentioned, where he spent the remainder of his life. A loyal friend to the end and beyond."

Gunnar's comment earned a small frown the history professor. "I don't expect you to give permanent sacrifices of your personal belongings just for a class activity. Why would I wish to keep your belongings? I have no use for them and they have meaning to you." She was a bit annoyed, however, when he dropped his history of magic book in the pool. That earned him a poke from the hand in the Lake. "I know you might like the idea of sacrificing my subject, Mr. McCarthy, but clearly you don't treasure it as much as you should," she retorted dryly. Tutt Tutt!

What happened next was not something Alice expected to happen in this class. She heard Cordelia shouting dramatically that the lake demanded a sacrifice. Well now, she really seemed to be in the mood. That was good. But then she pricked her finger and released a drop of blood. "Ms. Winklebleck!" she exclaimed, and she rushed to the girl's side. Her first reaction was to check to make sure she wasn't still bleeding. Thankfully, she seemed to be okay. The sword was offered to her. Well then. "Are you all right, Cordelia?" she asked in a gentler voice in case her earlier shouting had set the girl's nerves off. "You should know I did not expect anyone to injure themselves for a class activity. Not that it wasn't a worthy sacrifice. I guess it's okay." But she hoped Malachi didn't hear about this. She wasn't sure how he'd react. "I'm afraid I won't be able to offer you your sacrifice back. Would you like a healing potion?" Her answers about Percival and Mordred were correct ones, but Alice just gave a nod and a small smile in response. "That is correct. You're well read." She was a bit too distracted to elaborate on those knights further.

With that, class was over. Alice clapped her hands together. The rocks and the pools of water vanished. In their place were the student's desks - a little wet 9Alice still needed practice on her newfound magic) but intact. Tina's butterfly bracelet and Daisy's gold necklace appeared on top of their desks, along with all the other worthy sacrifices - save Cordelia's blood.

Alice beamed at the class. "Class dismissed! Have a peaceful day."


OOC: Thank you SO much for coming, guys! I'll award points for the past two lessons tomorrow. You guys rock.
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Old 07-15-2019, 07:03 AM   #24 (permalink)



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Originally Posted by Goblinfrog View Post
What happened next was not something Alice expected to happen in this class. She heard Cordelia shouting dramatically that the lake demanded a sacrifice. Well now, she really seemed to be in the mood. That was good. But then she pricked her finger and released a drop of blood. "Ms. Winklebleck!" she exclaimed, and she rushed to the girl's side. Her first reaction was to check to make sure she wasn't still bleeding. Thankfully, she seemed to be okay. The sword was offered to her. Well then. "Are you all right, Cordelia?" she asked in a gentler voice in case her earlier shouting had set the girl's nerves off. "You should know I did not expect anyone to injure themselves for a class activity. Not that it wasn't a worthy sacrifice. I guess it's okay." But she hoped Malachi didn't hear about this. She wasn't sure how he'd react. "I'm afraid I won't be able to offer you your sacrifice back. Would you like a healing potion?" Her answers about Percival and Mordred were correct ones, but Alice just gave a nod and a small smile in response. "That is correct. You're well read." She was a bit too distracted to elaborate on those knights further.

With that, class was over. Alice clapped her hands together. The rocks and the pools of water vanished. In their place were the student's desks - a little wet 9Alice still needed practice on her newfound magic) but intact. Tina's butterfly bracelet and Daisy's gold necklace appeared on top of their desks, along with all the other worthy sacrifices - save Cordelia's blood.

Alice beamed at the class. "Class dismissed! Have a peaceful day."
Cordelia had not been expecting the professor to shout at her when using a device that was a completely normal part of her daily life. Startled by the shouting, Cordelia turned to the professor who had appeared by her side. The young Gryffindor held up the small sword she had received from the lake. "Look, my sacrifice is worthy! It gave me a sword!" She grinned. Oh, the professor meant the finger prick. It wasn't even any more than a single drop of blood. Seriously, what was it with people seeing blood and freaking out? Surely the professor was aware of her Type 1 Diabetes and had seen her doing blood sugar tests before. If the professor didn’t know… well, this was going to be awkward. Although using a medical device to make a blood sacrifice was perhaps misuse of medical equipment. Making eye contact with Professor O’Hara, Cordelia licked the remaining traces of blood off her finger. ”I’m fine. I prick my finger with this device to test my blood sugar anywhere from 4 to 10 times a day as part of routine diabetes management. I got a test out of it too; this wasn’t completely a waste of blood.” With all the attention Professor O’Hara was giving her over a single drop of blood, the professor must have noticed that she also had the rest of her diabetes supplies out. It would have been a terrible shame to draw blood without testing. ”The, uh, lake magic can keep my sacrifice.” She didn’t exactly have any uses for a drop of her own blood that had been in water. The professor was offering her a what now? ”Unless someone has just invented a new healing potion that will fix my pancreas that the healers at St. Mungo’s haven’t told me about yet, I will do just fine without a healing potion.” If such a potion existed, she wouldn’t have type 1 diabetes anymore. Cordelia dreamed of the day that such a potion would exist. Alas, there were some limitations on what magic could cure. ”If you have additional questions or would like to further discuss this, I would be happy to meet with you in your office or with the healer.” That was the sensible thing to say, right?
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