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Term 59: September - December 2021 Term Fifty-Nine: The Strange Plant in Greenhouse Six (Sept 2105 - June 2106)

 
 
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Old 11-12-2021, 02:08 PM
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Default CoMC Lesson 2 - Ashwinders

Today the CoMC classroom paddock is host to several fire pits, complete with wood stacked nearby, ready to be arranged and lit. Around the fire pits, an ankle-high maze fills the rest of the paddock, with its walls far enough apart for student feet to walk around in without stepping on the tiny walls. And despite spending most of the morning clearing the paddock to install the maze, vines have started creeping back into the paddock and along the maze.

At the front, Professor Paszek is waiting in front of the only pre-arranged but still unlit fire pit. Gather around, class will begin soon.


ooc: Welcome! As always, SS rules apply, and please acquaint yourself with the CoMC rules if you haven't already! Class will officially begin in about 24 hours. CLASS HAS BEGUN!


Greetings and Fire-building
Question 1: What are magical pests?
Question 2: How can magical pests be useful?
Old 11-16-2021, 11:04 PM   #26 (permalink)



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Originally Posted by sweetpinkpixie View Post

"You need smaller things first," Atlas offered in suggestion to the Slytherin going for the big pieces first while he knelt down and scooped up some bits of straw and other tiny sticks in his immediate area. "The kindle. Then use those bigger ones in a crisscross pattern."
"Oh, I was going to put the kindling in the middle," Violet responded, thinking to herself that she had already been laying out her larger wood in a square pattern. But--okay, should the kindling go underneath it, then? So be it, since Atlas seemed to know what he was doing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cassirin View Post

Phoebe dropped down next to the firepit and examined the set-up. "I'm joining you two. And if we're supposed to start a magical fire, do you suppose that means the gathering should be magical too? Like summon the sticks to us?" She demonstrated by Accioing some twigs with a non-verbal flick of her wand.
If Phoebe thought she was going to start bossing them around like little kids again, she could think again, Violet thought. Ever since she'd turned seventeen at the beginning of the year, she'd felt less inclined to let older students tell her what to do. Unless, of course, they knew what to do (which at the moment seemed to be Atlas).

And accio'ing the firewood? That was just showing off. "Well, then, in that case, maybe we should just transfigure the firewood. Focalia!" Violet added, sweeping her wand in an "X" over some loose grass and transfiguring them into a couple of smaller sticks. Okay, now she was just showing off, she thought to herself a second later. "But I don't think the point of this class is fire-kindling, so maybe we should just get on with it," she added, blushing slightly at herself and casting a quick fire charm (oh yes, she was quite good at those now) onto their pile when it was finished, smiling at Atlas for his skill in arranging the wood.

And now she realized that while she was preoccupied with petty things, the class had gone on. Pests? "Cornish pixies can be dreadful pests, they get into everything and are very destructive," she offered when it was her turn. She remembered the summer when her Uncle Hamlet had brought a few home from a summer trip and then not fastened their cage carefully enough.

Last edited by MadAlice; 11-16-2021 at 11:06 PM. Reason: add subject line
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Old 11-16-2021, 11:08 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Claudine was actually disappointed when Valentina mentioned that she wasn’t excited for the lesson should the topic indeed turn out to be Ashwinders. “I hope your mind changes.” Paszek drew the Slytherin’s attention again, this time with a question.

Pests… well, Atlas’ explanation had basically covered how Claudine felt about the topic, though she wasn’t drawn to the robotics part.. Humans probably were the biggest pests. Not all of them but most… you know, because she was not so fond of ninety nine percent or more of the human race.

“The Bundimun, professor,’’ Claudine volunteered, wiggling her fingers of her raised hand. “Nasty infestations they can cause to houses.”
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Old 11-17-2021, 12:31 AM   #28 (permalink)

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Text Cut: What wonderful answers!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Watson View Post
She had been lost in her thoughts… which wasn’t an odd occurrence but what she ans V had discussed had preoccupied her all day so it was until people were forming groups did she come back to attention. Huh? She saw the three man groups already (Claudine/Heath/Valentina and Atlas/Violet/Phoebe) form quickly and then her eyes landed on a group that wasn’t quite three yet so she made a beeline to balance out the class. Funnily enough, her brother was part of that group so hopefully he didn’t mind her joining Bella and him. “Hi!! Can I tag along?” she asked, out of courtesy, before butting in with more wood to offer her new team.

Before she could make a comment, Professaur was asking a question! She raised her hand to answer the question. Ooh! Ooh! She knew LOTS OF PESTS!! “Doxy’s can be pests. I’m sure they wouldn’t agree but I think they’re considered one… As for what makes them pests.. is it cause they’re troublemakers?” And that they like to have fun? And if that was so, could she be considered a magical pest? She turned her gaze to her brother, hopefully he didn’t think she was TOO MUCH OF A PEST to him.
Doxies were troublemakers. "Yes, doxies can cause many problems in a magical household, especially if there is a large number of them," she nodded at the youngest Nam's answer. There was a whole group in the Ministry of Magic dedicated to handling doxy infestations. In case anybody wanted some career ideas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArianaBlack View Post
Kins was a little out of it, so while everyone else moved around to form groups, she stayed put for a little longer. Just thinking. About stuff and things. Being a teenager is the very worst.

It was only as people really started getting their firepits going that Kins realized she was one of the only ones without a group and in a bout of panic, she scurried over to Phoebe (and Atlas and Violet). Atlas didn't like her very much and she wasn't sure how Violet felt, but maybe neither of them would mind if she just stood back and didn't touch anything. She didn't want to ruin their firepit anyway.

You know what was a real pest? Homework. Maybe she could convince Professor P against giving them any.

"These vines are pests..." Professor Flamsteed would probably agree. "They harm other plants and keep getting in the way of everything." Which was totally the definition of 'pest'. Nevermind that they were in Creatures and not Herbology.

While not quite what she was looking for, Mia had to admit Kinsay James had an excellent point. "Yes, very good point, Miss James," she said. "Pests aren't only creatures, they can be plants as well, anything that doesn't belong in an environment and causes harm." There was a whole other lesson to be had about invasive species, as she was starting to view these vines to be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Light View Post
.... Ashwinders?? Valentina's eyes widened. Snakes?? They were going to study snakes? "Oh.. well, I guess I'm not too excited about this lesson now." She half smiled at Claudine and Heath ( another older student who seemed very intimidating as well but he did have a nice smile ).

She turned to look at the professor, raising her hand almost immediately. "Garden gnomes, professor!" .... right??
"Yep, garden gnomes are a common magical pest!" And could cause major havoc in anybody trying to grow a garden.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chelliephone View Post
Seeing how far along the other groups were compared to theirs, Evan hurried himself a little more to gather the wood and stack it all in the fire pit - noticing Lisa ask if she could join them as well as she started to do the same. He simply shot her a small, as an 'of course' but all showing appreciation for the fact she had not waited and simply got to task. Not that this was uncharacteristic or anything either though, as patience was not a virtue he would say his sister had.

Pests was it? He could hear the beginning of discussion as he hurriedly placed a few more logs and pulled out his wand with an "Incendio" at the fire, hoping his sister and Bella did not mind he had done the honors. He turned, considering making a soft joke about his sister being a pest but considering she was already looking at him and she still had not seemed quite Lisa-like to him, he bit his tongue and just smiled again. Magical pests was it? Garden gnomes and doxy's was a good answer, vines even more so. He raised his hand to offer an answer as well, "Nifflers can be pest like with their obsession with shine."

But they were cute too, so forgiven.
Mia nodded at Evan's thoughtful answer, pleased to see his group had gotten their fire started. "Yes, nifflers may be cute and seem harmless, but they tend to destroy things in their attempts to gather shiny items," she agreed. "Which is why they are not allowed as pets at Hogwarts." In case anybody got any ideas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetpinkpixie View Post

SPEAKING of PESTS...well...no...he wouldn't exactly put Kinsay James into the category of pest. Especially not when Phoebe James was around. He would be polite and even smile at her as she joined. Mmmhmm.

As to the professor's question...well...his hand went up. "Anything can be a pest," he offered as a lukewarm sort of response. "As long as it is annoying, troublesome, or destructive ....it can be a pest. Dad says felines, kneazles, are pests and their claws are wicked destructive and harmful. They are predators and hunt and prey on native species. A real threat to global biodiversity AND cats, felines, in general have contributed to the extinction of 63 species of birds, mammals, and reptiles in the wild and continue to adversely impact a wide variety of other species," Atlas recited practically verbatium from one of dad's tirades. "I personally find chizpurfles the worst. They've sabotaged me loads with my robotics."
"Annoying, troublesome, and destructive, indeed," Mia agreed. Though she didn't know Atlas's father...if he thought kneazles were pests, she was certain they wouldn't get along. She was pleased to hear Atlas bring up biodiversity and extinction, though. They were important topics. But again, the focus of another lesson, maybe. "Yep, very good points. Chizpurfles are more traditionally pests, but anything could be considered a pest, depending on the environment."

Quote:
Originally Posted by MadAlice View Post
And now she realized that while she was preoccupied with petty things, the class had gone on. Pests? "Cornish pixies can be dreadful pests, they get into everything and are very destructive," she offered when it was her turn. She remembered the summer when her Uncle Hamlet had brought a few home from a summer trip and then not fastened their cage carefully enough.
Another good example of traditional household pests, those pixies. "Yes, cornish pixies can be destructive," she agreed with a nod. "Yet more proof that being destructive, and perhaps too inquisitive, is a quality shared by many pests."

Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessLeader19 View Post
Claudine was actually disappointed when Valentina mentioned that she wasn’t excited for the lesson should the topic indeed turn out to be Ashwinders. “I hope your mind changes.” Paszek drew the Slytherin’s attention again, this time with a question.

Pests… well, Atlas’ explanation had basically covered how Claudine felt about the topic, though she wasn’t drawn to the robotics part.. Humans probably were the biggest pests. Not all of them but most… you know, because she was not so fond of ninety nine percent or more of the human race.

“The Bundimun, professor,’’ Claudine volunteered, wiggling her fingers of her raised hand. “Nasty infestations they can cause to houses.”
"Good, yes, a bundimun infection can cause houses to rot," she pointed out. "Much like what we're covering today, their damage can cause structures to fail."



So many good answers. And, unfortunately, there were a lot of magical pests. “Thank you all, yes, we've got Bundimun, Cornish pixies, chizpurfles, nifflers, garden gnomes, doxies, and many others as more traditional magical household pests," she summarized. "Destruction, damage, and being annoying are all common traits of pets, and in certain circumstances, even wizards or normally gentle creatures can become pests if they distrub the environment and cause harm." She kicked a vine out of her way, heading back toward the front of the paddock. Kinsay James was right, these vines were pests. But, time to move on.

"The magical pest we’ll be discussing today is the Ashwinder,” she announced. "Ashwinders are serpents that are born from magical fires, fires where Floo powder has been used, when they burn down, like we'll be letting our fires burn down today." She glanced around, making sure none of the fires had burned down yet. They all looked good. She pulled a jar of Floo powder from a pocket and tossed a pinch into her fire pit, causing the flames to turn bright green for just a moment. These fires couldn't take them anywhere as they weren't connected to the Floo network, but the Floo powder would still allow Ashwinders to be born. "Ashwinders wander off in magical houses, and lay their eggs. Unfortunately, their eggs are very hot, which is why they're considered a pest--many a housefire has been caused by Ashwinder eggs that nobody knew about."

She began wandering again, tossing small pinches of Floo powder into each of the students' fires as she spoke. “Now, what are some times when creatures we call pests might be considered useful?” she asked. “The Ashwinder, or any other magical pest.” She paused, then added another question to tickle their brains. “Or, how can we prevent magical pests--whether the Ashwinder or something else--from causing problems in our homes?”

Ooc: You’ll have about 24 hours to post your answers.
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Old 11-17-2021, 02:38 AM   #29 (permalink)

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Phoebe raised an eyebrow at Violet's emphatic show of magic. Like, was it a contest? They were seventh years, they did non-verbals, it was grand to be so ancient, blah blah blah. "Bravo, old girl. I didn't even know that was a spell."

But they were talking about pests, right? Best not to identify Violet as one, since she did not appear to have a sense of humor. "Younger siblings can be terrible pests, but they're very good for blaming things on when you accidentally burn dinner or lose your keys or let the dog out. It is nearly always Kizzy's fault, and she's okay with that."
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Old 11-17-2021, 07:07 PM   #30 (permalink)





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Magical pests? Why did no one mention jarveys?? Weren't they pests in their obnoxious ways? Then again, maybe they were considered the 'other'. Although if Apollo was being honest, he definitely wouldn't have considered ashwinders to be a pest. Also, he totally was competent in the incendio spell.

Joining Lisa and Evan Nam, along with Bella, he mostly was quiet and contemplative thus far throughout the lesson. "Pests might be useful if we need them for like potion ingredients. Like ashwinder eggs are a very common potion ingredient." He looked over at Phoebe with her answer about pests, blinking a few times when she mentioned younger siblings. He sadly wouldn't know about that, but she did appear to be joking.
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Phoebe's response earned the smallest of smiles from Cece and she looked down, thinking of Sammy when he was a tiny, curious little thing. Truthfully, she'd probably been more of a pest than he ever could be.

"Pests are useful in that they give the pest control people a job," The blonde offered softly. Jobs were important. If anyone knew that, Cece did. Leaving this place meant finding herself one of those really soon. Sooner than she liked to think about.
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Hearing Phoebe's answer, Kinsay almost piped up to object. Except, Fi had a point. Kiz was totally okay with it. Maybe not at first, but she learned to live with it mhm. If she weren't so cute, it probably would've been a different story all together. But as it was, she could usually weasel her way out of getting into big trouble and if that meant taking one for the team...

She did, however, raise her hand to jump in right after Phoebe because she could help with the second part of the question. The part about how to prevent pests from causing problems. "Sometimes I can be bribed with snacks." Only the good kind though. Kinsay had standards.


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Claudine too could agree with Kinsay: the vines were a pest. Anyway. Indeed there were a lot of pests out there, and if one were to combine them all both from the wizarding and muggle world, then the list would surely go on forever.

Her face lit up once more when Paszek mentioned Ashwinders. Of course the Snakette had figured that out from the inception when ‘magical fire’ was mentioned. She also knew what the Floo powder would be very helpful in this process of Ashwinders being born. Claudine watched each fire as the powder was dropped into it. This was such a fascinating thing.

“Since Ashwinders are usually born from fires that are born from magical fires that are left unsupervised, it’s best to have at least one person around to keep an eye on the fire while it’s burning.”
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Old 11-17-2021, 11:30 PM   #34 (permalink)



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Violet suppressed an eye-roll at Phoebe's comment. Bravo, old girl?? What was this, an Edwardian novel or something? And how casually she threw her sister,Kinsay under the bus; Violet was surprised the younger girl didn't object, but she seemed to just shrug it off. Maybe that was what it was like to have a sister. Oh well, enough amusing herself with these Gryffindors and back to class.

"Ashwinders may be pests, but their eggs can be useful in a number of potions, like the antidote to ague." Also love potions, of course, but the less said about those, the better. "If you can harvest them in a regulated manner, that is, and freeze them so they don't catch on fire."
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Valentina was thinking about vines and how they were a pest like Kinsay had said - also, wondering when they were going to go away. It was getting to be a little tiresome to see them everywhere. Also. What did she know about ashwinders?? Nothing that her classmates hadn't already said. Oh, well.

"I've heard their eyes are red, professor. Is that true??"
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SPOILER!!: responses
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cassirin View Post
Phoebe raised an eyebrow at Violet's emphatic show of magic. Like, was it a contest? They were seventh years, they did non-verbals, it was grand to be so ancient, blah blah blah. "Bravo, old girl. I didn't even know that was a spell."

But they were talking about pests, right? Best not to identify Violet as one, since she did not appear to have a sense of humor. "Younger siblings can be terrible pests, but they're very good for blaming things on when you accidentally burn dinner or lose your keys or let the dog out. It is nearly always Kizzy's fault, and she's okay with that."
Um...wasn't Phoebe James's sister in this class? Mia paused a moment before nodding. "Yes, pests can be good scapegoats or excuses for having things not quite...right," she said finally. "Thank you, Miss James." And hopefully Phoebe's younger sibling wasn't offended.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArianaBlack View Post
Hearing Phoebe's answer, Kinsay almost piped up to object. Except, Fi had a point. Kiz was totally okay with it. Maybe not at first, but she learned to live with it mhm. If she weren't so cute, it probably would've been a different story all together. But as it was, she could usually weasel her way out of getting into big trouble and if that meant taking one for the team...

She did, however, raise her hand to jump in right after Phoebe because she could help with the second part of the question. The part about how to prevent pests from causing problems. "Sometimes I can be bribed with snacks." Only the good kind though. Kinsay had standards.


And with Phoebe's response fresh off her mind, Kinsay's answer almost made sense. "I suppose most creatures, pests and wizards included, can be distracted from causing trouble with food," she agreed. For some creatures, food in traps also worked mighty well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhoenixRising View Post
Magical pests? Why did no one mention jarveys?? Weren't they pests in their obnoxious ways? Then again, maybe they were considered the 'other'. Although if Apollo was being honest, he definitely wouldn't have considered ashwinders to be a pest. Also, he totally was competent in the incendio spell.

Joining Lisa and Evan Nam, along with Bella, he mostly was quiet and contemplative thus far throughout the lesson. "Pests might be useful if we need them for like potion ingredients. Like ashwinder eggs are a very common potion ingredient." He looked over at Phoebe with her answer about pests, blinking a few times when she mentioned younger siblings. He sadly wouldn't know about that, but she did appear to be joking.
"Potion ingredients, yes!" One of the most common things pests were useful for. Magical pests, at least. "You are correct, Ashwinder eggs, when properly handled, can be used in a variety of potions."

Quote:
Originally Posted by TakemetotheBurrow View Post
Phoebe's response earned the smallest of smiles from Cece and she looked down, thinking of Sammy when he was a tiny, curious little thing. Truthfully, she'd probably been more of a pest than he ever could be.

"Pests are useful in that they give the pest control people a job," The blonde offered softly. Jobs were important. If anyone knew that, Cece did. Leaving this place meant finding herself one of those really soon. Sooner than she liked to think about.
It was not quite what she had in mind, but Cece had a good point. "Yes, job security for those in the pest control business," she nodded. "A good background in magizoology is helpful for dealing with most pest problems," she added. In case anybody was considering a career in pest control, they were in the right class for it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessLeader19 View Post
Claudine too could agree with Kinsay: the vines were a pest. Anyway. Indeed there were a lot of pests out there, and if one were to combine them all both from the wizarding and muggle world, then the list would surely go on forever.

Her face lit up once more when Paszek mentioned Ashwinders. Of course the Snakette had figured that out from the inception when ‘magical fire’ was mentioned. She also knew what the Floo powder would be very helpful in this process of Ashwinders being born. Claudine watched each fire as the powder was dropped into it. This was such a fascinating thing.

“Since Ashwinders are usually born from fires that are born from magical fires that are left unsupervised, it’s best to have at least one person around to keep an eye on the fire while it’s burning.”
"Yes, good point, vigilance can help catch pests before they can really cause problems," Mia said, glad people were jumping on the Ashwinder topic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Light View Post
Valentina was thinking about vines and how they were a pest like Kinsay had said - also, wondering when they were going to go away. It was getting to be a little tiresome to see them everywhere. Also. What did she know about ashwinders?? Nothing that her classmates hadn't already said. Oh, well.

"I've heard their eyes are red, professor. Is that true??"
It wasn't what she had asked but (assuming she was talking about the Ashwinders), Valentina was at least still focused on the topic of the class. And it was interesting, if not particularly useful. "Yes, Ashwinders have red eyes, which you will all see shortly," she said.


SPOILER!!: Violet

Quote:
Originally Posted by MadAlice View Post
Violet suppressed an eye-roll at Phoebe's comment. Bravo, old girl?? What was this, an Edwardian novel or something? And how casually she threw her sister,Kinsay under the bus; Violet was surprised the younger girl didn't object, but she seemed to just shrug it off. Maybe that was what it was like to have a sister. Oh well, enough amusing herself with these Gryffindors and back to class.

"Ashwinders may be pests, but their eggs can be useful in a number of potions, like the antidote to ague." Also love potions, of course, but the less said about those, the better. "If you can harvest them in a regulated manner, that is, and freeze them so they don't catch on fire."


And they were back to Ashwinder eggs being used in potions. It was a good note to end on, she thought. "Yes, very important point here, Miss Blackthorne," Mia said. "Ashwinder eggs can be used in potions, but they have to be frozen soon after they're laid," she said, looking around to make sure everyone was listening.

"Very soon, some Ashwinders will be coming out of your fires, and looking for a nice corner in the maze to lay their eggs in," she said. "We'll be gathering the eggs to be used in potions, so you'll all need to find the eggs before they catch fire, and freeze them." She summoned a box of jars from the corner and pulled one out. "Glacius works well, and then they can go in these jars for safekeeping. Remember--the eggs are very hot, don't try to handle them before you've used the freezing charm."

Mia looked around, the fires looked to be in about the right state. "Go ahead and collect some jars. You can share Ashwinders if you'd like, but please keep an eye out in case there's one unattended. Let's try not to burn down the paddock!"


Even before the professor stopped talking, the first Ashwinder slithered from the remnants of her fire and into the maze. While she finished giving instructions, more Ashwinders began emerging from the fires, winding with determination into the maze. It was egg-laying time and they all needed to find nice cozy corners.

OOC: Okay! The main activity is here. Harvesting Ashwinder eggs. They'll need to
  1. Collect a jar (they're cold)
  2. Find/follow an Ashwinder(s) in the maze
  3. When it lays its eggs, freeze them and jar them
I'll be playing Ashwinders for you to interact with You'll have about 3 days.
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Old 11-18-2021, 05:35 AM   #37 (permalink)


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Misa stared at the fire. Confused. Waittttttt a second. "Professor, does that mean floo powder has ashwinder egg in it?" Or were these snake things spontaneous? Spontaneous and laying eggs sounded like the absolute worst thing possible.

She eyed one of the snake things, brain still processing the chicken and egg situation that was just described.

What were they supposed to be doing again? Because at this point Misa was just following one with no jar trying to figure out where snake babies come from.
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Old 11-18-2021, 05:54 AM   #38 (permalink)




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For some reason, ways that pests could be useful completely escaped Evan's mind which was why he had chosen to remain silent during the previous question. It only occurred to him later that he could have offered that pests could be useful for learning different magic techniques - such as the notable lesson in which Professor Lockhart had brought in Pixies for the purpose of teaching the class... something. He was fine with his silence however since he couldn't remember what the intention had been stated to be, as the man had not really taught anything as far as he could tell from history texts.

But anyways.

Ashwinder egg gathering time. Snakes were not something Evan had previously been fond of (or anything within their family), but after the previous summer he looked upon them far more favorably. So much so that he was thinking it was possible he'd quite enjoy this lesson. Once answers were gathered and instructions given, Evan followed his other peers to collect a jar before waiting for a few Ashwinders to take off for others to follow, before finally zeroing in on one himself. He followed along after it into the maze, careful for any others or his peers.
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Old 11-18-2021, 01:08 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Kindling and pretty girl smiles aside, Atlas was not a bit distracted by watching the fire and poking at it in places with bits of straw and waiting until the tips caught on fire. Straw burned down pretty quickly, so it was a speedy game of chicken with the flame before tossing it into the fire with his fingers only slightly licked by the flame. The sticks took a little longer and were more interesting.

Interesting enough that he was sort of zoning out during the transition from identifying some pests to listing off their benefits and good qualities. He likely would have just answered with something pretty straightforward and obvious with them being useful in potions and that sort of thing. So, watching the fire and poking it with another stick it was...until people started moving around a bit and then he was all wide eyed and obviously lost in a wet paper bag.

But...collecting a jar seemed to be the THING...so he went and did that. TWO, actually, because one he offered to Phoebe James while doing bright red cheeks and a sheepish but impish sort of smile.

"...I probably shouldn't cast Glacius. I'll likely destroy the egg," he said somewhat bluntly. "I can't have unborn ashwinder deaths on my conscience."

He still had jarvey death on it, among other things.
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Old 11-18-2021, 06:06 PM   #40 (permalink)



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SPOILER!!: Catching up
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chelliephone View Post
Hearing Bella ask about partners, Evan made his way towards her, immediately grabbing some wood and laying it down in the fire pit. "I'll work with you." Though he supposed that was already obvious, even without being stated.
Bella was piling the firewood and trying to remember how her uncle had showed her to do it, when Evan came over and joined her at her pit. Looking up she smiled at him. "Hi, cool! Evan, do you want to do the honours in lighting the fire? I've already collected a lot of firewood." Looking at the wood she stood up from her sitting position and went off to collect more wood. Professor Paszeck had after all not specified how much wood they need.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chelliephone View Post
Pests was it? He could hear the beginning of discussion as he hurriedly placed a few more logs and pulled out his wand with an "Incendio" at the fire, hoping his sister and Bella did not mind he had done the honors. He turned, considering making a soft joke about his sister being a pest but considering she was already looking at him and she still had not seemed quite Lisa-like to him, he bit his tongue and just smiled again. [/B]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post
She could instruct from here. “While we let the fires burn down, let’s talk about pests. Magical pests, to be specific.” She raised her voice slightly, she wanted to be sure they could hear her.

“What are some examples of magical pests? Why are they considered pests, specifically?” She kept an eye on the Gryffindors and Violet, but moved on to check on Evan and Bella's fire.
While she worked together with Evan to stack and collect wood they were joined by Evan's sister Lisa. "Hi!" Bella mouthed in passing to the younger girl which showed her approval. Then Evan thankfully took her up on her offer and lit their fire, which was right in time too when Professor Paszcek continued the lesson. It was nice to stand in the warmth that emanated from the fire. Raising her hand she said "My grandma has huge trouble with flesh-eating slugs that are eating their way through her vegetable patch at home. I guess they are called pests because they multiply quickly, are hard to repel and cause a lot of damage to both property and slugs in my example ruin crops of food and vegetables." It felt good to give an answer that she hadn't heard anyone of her peers say.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post
"The magical pest we’ll be discussing today is the Ashwinder,” she announced. "Ashwinders are serpents that are born from magical fires, fires where Floo powder has been used, when they burn down, like we'll be letting our fires burn down today." She glanced around, making sure none of the fires had burned down yet. They all looked good. She pulled a jar of Floo powder from a pocket and tossed a pinch into her fire pit, causing the flames to turn bright green for just a moment. These fires couldn't take them anywhere as they weren't connected to the Floo network, but the Floo powder would still allow Ashwinders to be born. "Ashwinders wander off in magical houses, and lay their eggs. Unfortunately, their eggs are very hot, which is why they're considered a pest--many a housefire has been caused by Ashwinder eggs that nobody knew about."

She began wandering again, tossing small pinches of Floo powder into each of the students' fires as she spoke. “Now, what are some times when creatures we call pests might be considered useful?” she asked. “The Ashwinder, or any other magical pest.” She paused, then added another question to tickle their brains. “Or, how can we prevent magical pests--whether the Ashwinder or something else--from causing problems in our homes?”
[/COLOR]
Pests were definitley annoying and destructive Bella hummed to herself as she warmed her hands against the fire that still remained in her groups pit. Ashwinders were the creature for today, oh well fire-crabs they might meet next time. Raising her hand to answer Bella said "Pests in general not just ashwinder eggs can be useful as some have said as ingredients in potions and similiar. I guess they might be able to be used as a diversion too in a battle if you want to flee the scence and release a cage of angry pixies in the opponents direction so you can get away." She took a moment to think before she continued. "We can use repellants i guess to keep our homes and vegetable patches safe."

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhoenixRising View Post
Magical pests? Why did no one mention jarveys?? Weren't they pests in their obnoxious ways? Then again, maybe they were considered the 'other'. Although if Apollo was being honest, he definitely wouldn't have considered ashwinders to be a pest. Also, he totally was competent in the incendio spell.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post


"Very soon, some Ashwinders will be coming out of your fires, and looking for a nice corner in the maze to lay their eggs in," she said. "We'll be gathering the eggs to be used in potions, so you'll all need to find the eggs before they catch fire, and freeze them." She summoned a box of jars from the corner and pulled one out. "Glacius works well, and then they can go in these jars for safekeeping. Remember--the eggs are very hot, don't try to handle them before you've used the freezing charm."

Mia looked around, the fires looked to be in about the right state. "Go ahead and collect some jars. You can share Ashwinders if you'd like, but please keep an eye out in case there's one unattended. Let's try not to burn down the paddock!"


Even before the professor stopped talking, the first Ashwinder slithered from the remnants of her fire and into the maze. While she finished giving instructions, more Ashwinders began emerging from the fires, winding with determination into the maze. It was egg-laying time and they all needed to find nice cozy corners.

OOC: Okay! The main activity is here. Harvesting Ashwinder eggs. They'll need to
  1. Collect a jar (they're cold)
  2. Find/follow an Ashwinder(s) in the maze
  3. When it lays its eggs, freeze them and jar them
I'll be playing Ashwinders for you to interact with You'll have about 3 days.
When Apollo joined her, Evan and Lisa's group Bella quietly reached out and gave his hand a silent squeeze before listening to professor Mia's next task. They were going to be harvesting/collecting ashwinder eggs. It was a good thing that she had her dragonhide gloves with her that hopefully would protect her hands from both burns and possible frostbite. Putting on her gloves Bella watched with half fascination and half interest how an ashwinder came out of her groups fire and escaped. Quickly she casted a look at Apollo before she sprinted off after the ashwinder into the maze.
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Old 11-18-2021, 10:10 PM   #41 (permalink)
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That explained what the maze was about. Claudine was so, so excited to get started on this activity. As a bonus for her, they would be using the Freezing Charm which happened to be one of the Charms she excelled at. Practically beaming, the seventh year collected a cold jar. One would do for now.

Her gaze went back to the pits, her gaze eventually settling on the pit she, Valentina and Heath had worked on. Any minute now, and there would be Ashwinders crawling about.

Any minute…

Off the girl would go the moment one was spotted. Then there was not a moment to waste for there the little creatures were. Claudine zoned in on one and began to follow it.
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Old 11-19-2021, 01:41 AM   #42 (permalink)

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Valentina really wasn't as excited to be following serpents around - but it was an activity and it had to be done. Unfortunately. She collected her cold jar and held it carefully as she looked at the firepit, her eyes widening as she watched one emerge and slither off into the maze. OKAY. She was going to follow that one.

Jar held in one hand, wand in the other - she quickly walked, realising that they didn't seem as scary as she had assumed initially.
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Old 11-19-2021, 04:10 AM   #43 (permalink)

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SPOILER!!: Misa
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilFox06 View Post
Misa stared at the fire. Confused. Waittttttt a second. "Professor, does that mean floo powder has ashwinder egg in it?" Or were these snake things spontaneous? Spontaneous and laying eggs sounded like the absolute worst thing possible.

She eyed one of the snake things, brain still processing the chicken and egg situation that was just described.

What were they supposed to be doing again? Because at this point Misa was just following one with no jar trying to figure out where snake babies come from.


This was an excellent question, unsurprising that it came from a Ravenclaw. "No, not to my knowledge," Mia said, shrugging. Floo powder's exact ingredients were unknown. "It's from the magical nature of the fire..." Much like the chicken and the egg problem, in fact. Fires caused Ashwinders, who laid eggs, which caused fire...very hard to wrap one's mind around. "Best to just be careful about using too much floo powder."
The ashwinder Misa had been following, meanwhile, settled in a dead end of the maze, coiling up to lay its eggs. One... two... three red hot ashwinder eggs, and then the serpent slowly disintegrated into ash, as they were wont to do.
SPOILER!!: Evan
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chelliephone View Post
For some reason, ways that pests could be useful completely escaped Evan's mind which was why he had chosen to remain silent during the previous question. It only occurred to him later that he could have offered that pests could be useful for learning different magic techniques - such as the notable lesson in which Professor Lockhart had brought in Pixies for the purpose of teaching the class... something. He was fine with his silence however since he couldn't remember what the intention had been stated to be, as the man had not really taught anything as far as he could tell from history texts.

But anyways.

Ashwinder egg gathering time. Snakes were not something Evan had previously been fond of (or anything within their family), but after the previous summer he looked upon them far more favorably. So much so that he was thinking it was possible he'd quite enjoy this lesson. Once answers were gathered and instructions given, Evan followed his other peers to collect a jar before waiting for a few Ashwinders to take off for others to follow, before finally zeroing in on one himself. He followed along after it into the maze, careful for any others or his peers.


It seemed to have chosen the longest path, not falling for any dead ends. The Ashwinder made its way to the far corner of the maze, at the very edge of the classroom paddock, before interlacing itself with some of the encroaching vines. A nest, one might say. And pretty soon it had laid its eggs, too, four of them, before turning to dust. Or, rather, ash.


SPOILER!!: Atlas
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetpinkpixie View Post
Kindling and pretty girl smiles aside, Atlas was not a bit distracted by watching the fire and poking at it in places with bits of straw and waiting until the tips caught on fire. Straw burned down pretty quickly, so it was a speedy game of chicken with the flame before tossing it into the fire with his fingers only slightly licked by the flame. The sticks took a little longer and were more interesting.

Interesting enough that he was sort of zoning out during the transition from identifying some pests to listing off their benefits and good qualities. He likely would have just answered with something pretty straightforward and obvious with them being useful in potions and that sort of thing. So, watching the fire and poking it with another stick it was...until people started moving around a bit and then he was all wide eyed and obviously lost in a wet paper bag.

But...collecting a jar seemed to be the THING...so he went and did that. TWO, actually, because one he offered to Phoebe James while doing bright red cheeks and a sheepish but impish sort of smile.

"...I probably shouldn't cast Glacius. I'll likely destroy the egg," he said somewhat bluntly. "I can't have unborn ashwinder deaths on my conscience."

He still had jarvey death on it, among other things.

Distraction wasn't a good quality in a time like this...if the boy wanted to avoid freezing any eggs, he was in luck. Over in the maze, one of the earliest Ashwinder's eggs had gone unattended too long. Luckily it had rained recently, so there wasn't too many flammable sticks nearby, but in one of the maze's dead ends, the eggs had begun smoking. Well, the weeds they'd been laid on were smoking. Smoldering, if we were being specific. Maybe Atlas would be more comfortable putting out fire than freezing Ashwinder eggs.
SPOILER!!: Bella and Claudine
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic Witch View Post
When Apollo joined her, Evan and Lisa's group Bella quietly reached out and gave his hand a silent squeeze before listening to professor Mia's next task. They were going to be harvesting/collecting ashwinder eggs. It was a good thing that she had her dragonhide gloves with her that hopefully would protect her hands from both burns and possible frostbite. Putting on her gloves Bella watched with half fascination and half interest how an ashwinder came out of her groups fire and escaped. Quickly she casted a look at Apollo before she sprinted off after the ashwinder into the maze.
Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessLeader19 View Post
That explained what the maze was about. Claudine was so, so excited to get started on this activity. As a bonus for her, they would be using the Freezing Charm which happened to be one of the Charms she excelled at. Practically beaming, the seventh year collected a cold jar. One would do for now.

Her gaze went back to the pits, her gaze eventually settling on the pit she, Valentina and Heath had worked on. Any minute now, and there would be Ashwinders crawling about.

Any minute…

Off the girl would go the moment one was spotted. Then there was not a moment to waste for there the little creatures were. Claudine zoned in on one and began to follow it.


Hopefully the girls weren't too focused on their Ashwinders, for the paths these serpents had chosen met up in the middle of the maze. The two Ashwinders paused as they passed, beady red eye meeting beady red eye. And just like that, Claudine's Ashwinder went off the way Bella's had come from, and Bella's Ashwinder went toward where Claudine's Ashwinder had already passed.

SPOILER!!: Valentina
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady of Light View Post
Valentina really wasn't as excited to be following serpents around - but it was an activity and it had to be done. Unfortunately. She collected her cold jar and held it carefully as she looked at the firepit, her eyes widening as she watched one emerge and slither off into the maze. OKAY. She was going to follow that one.

Jar held in one hand, wand in the other - she quickly walked, realising that they didn't seem as scary as she had assumed initially.


No drama from this Ashwinder. It curled up in the first maze alcove/dead end it reached, looking like it was ready lay its eggs...but not doing so. Not yet. Just a little curled Ashwinder, biding its time before laying any red-hot eggs and vanishing into the abyss.
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Old 11-19-2021, 08:31 PM   #44 (permalink)



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Quote:
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But...collecting a jar seemed to be the THING...so he went and did that. TWO, actually, because one he offered to Phoebe James while doing bright red cheeks and a sheepish but impish sort of smile.
Violet spared a glance for Atlas as she collected her jar (Merlin, those things were cold!. Oh dear, was there romance in the air? She suspected that Phoebe James was a bit more than the younger boy could handle; she also thought sadly that she was probably not ever going to be the kind of girl that boys collected jars for. Oh well, all the more reason to learn to do things for yourself! And so she turned her attention back to the task at hand.

The Ashwinders were fascinating creatures--Violet had never seen one live before, only in pictures. They were beautiful, fiery serpents, sort of like the mythical salamanders in legends. She hurried to follow a couple of them into the maze before she lost sight of them.
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Old 11-19-2021, 10:20 PM   #45 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post
Hopefully the girls weren't too focused on their Ashwinders, for the paths these serpents had chosen met up in the middle of the maze. The two Ashwinders paused as they passed, beady red eye meeting beady red eye. And just like that, Claudine's Ashwinder went off the way Bella's had come from, and Bella's Ashwinder went toward where Claudine's Ashwinder had already passed.
Of course Claudine was super focused on her Ashwinder. Anyone who knew her would know that she was fascinated by almost any creature. Due to her focus, she failed to notice that her Ashwinder was on a collision course with Bella’s. Not until her own Ashwinder paused did she actually size up the second one then looked about to see Bella.

“Hi, Bella.” Claudine grinned. “Seems as though these two a stare off.” A short one, though, which was a good thing because the seventh year could hardly wait to collect the eggs. She followed slowly, continuing in the direction she and the Ashwinder were already headed, clutching the jar with both hands to her chest.
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Old 11-20-2021, 03:17 AM   #46 (permalink)




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He had to admit, he was very impressed with the Ashwinder's ability to avoid all dead ends and make it through nearly the entire maze. It had him momentarily wondering if this particular one had gotten lucky, or if they were a creature that had a higher IQ as a whole. He briefly considered asking Professor Paszek, but he figured it was also a question he could follow up on later. Especially considering his ashwinder was stopping and appeared to be ready to lay her eggs.

Watching it turn to ash as it laid it's eggs... it felt rather sad to him. He watched the spot, also eying the vine nest warily before pointing his wand at the each egg. "Glacius!" Once that portion of the task was complete, he tentatively scooted closer to the vine nest in order to grab the eggs to put them in his jar.
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Old 11-20-2021, 03:20 AM   #47 (permalink)

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SPOILER!!: Violet
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadAlice View Post
Violet spared a glance for Atlas as she collected her jar (Merlin, those things were cold!. Oh dear, was there romance in the air? She suspected that Phoebe James was a bit more than the younger boy could handle; she also thought sadly that she was probably not ever going to be the kind of girl that boys collected jars for. Oh well, all the more reason to learn to do things for yourself! And so she turned her attention back to the task at hand.

The Ashwinders were fascinating creatures--Violet had never seen one live before, only in pictures. They were beautiful, fiery serpents, sort of like the mythical salamanders in legends. She hurried to follow a couple of them into the maze before she lost sight of them.


The Ashwinder Violet followed took its time winding through the maze, cautiously checking around every third corner. Finally it came to a nice end in its path. Coiling itself and checking its surroundings, it laid two eggs. Then after a deliberate pause, laid a third egg and disintegrated, leaving the three eggs on a little pillow of ash.

SPOILER!!: Claudine
Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessLeader19 View Post
Of course Claudine was super focused on her Ashwinder. Anyone who knew her would know that she was fascinated by almost any creature. Due to her focus, she failed to notice that her Ashwinder was on a collision course with Bella’s. Not until her own Ashwinder paused did she actually size up the second one then looked about to see Bella.

“Hi, Bella.” Claudine grinned. “Seems as though these two a stare off.” A short one, though, which was a good thing because the seventh year could hardly wait to collect the eggs. She followed slowly, continuing in the direction she and the Ashwinder were already headed, clutching the jar with both hands to her chest.


Not long after the stare off, Claudine's Ashwinder found a nice corner in the maze, curled up, and lay four whole eggs before disintegrating away.


SPOILER!!: Evan
He had to admit, he was very impressed with the Ashwinder's ability to avoid all dead ends and make it through nearly the entire maze. It had him momentarily wondering if this particular one had gotten lucky, or if they were a creature that had a higher IQ as a whole. He briefly considered asking Professor Paszek, but he figured it was also a question he could follow up on later. Especially considering his ashwinder was stopping and appeared to be ready to lay her eggs.

Watching it turn to ash as it laid it's eggs... it felt rather sad to him. He watched the spot, also eying the vine nest warily before pointing his wand at the each egg. "Glacius!" Once that portion of the task was complete, he tentatively scooted closer to the vine nest in order to grab the eggs to put them in his jar.


The eggs froze, no longer threatening to start a fire in the paddock after his spell.
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Old 11-20-2021, 03:33 AM   #48 (permalink)




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... At least the eggs did seem sufficiently safe to grab onto now. Evan considered using diffindo on the vines around, but he didn't want to damage them, so instead he just thrust his hand in and quickly pulled each out to carefully place in his jar.

Merlin's beard, they were cold. Getting all the eggs into his jar, he capped it off before heading back towards where the jars were kept to place his now full one there. He figured maybe he'd go around as well and see if he could help any of his classmates too.

Or maybe he should just focus on walking the maze to make sure none of them last any other Ashwinders. Professor Paszek had warned that could happen..
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Old 11-20-2021, 10:45 AM   #49 (permalink)

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SPOILER!!: professor
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post
No drama from this Ashwinder. It curled up in the first maze alcove/dead end it reached, looking like it was ready lay its eggs...but not doing so. Not yet. Just a little curled Ashwinder, biding its time before laying any red-hot eggs and vanishing into the abyss.


Valentina slowly followed the ashwinder, watching it curl up - almost as if it was going to lay it's eggs but not quite. Why was it waiting?? She couldn't help but notice the other ashwinders already laying their eggs so why wasn't this one doing that yet? Maybe it didn't feel ready.. or.. or maybe not all ashwinders were the egg laying type.. anywaaay. She impatiently waited. "Come oooon." She muttered softly.
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Old 11-20-2021, 10:55 AM   #50 (permalink)



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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waddles View Post
Hopefully the girls weren't too focused on their Ashwinders, for the paths these serpents had chosen met up in the middle of the maze. The two Ashwinders paused as they passed, beady red eye meeting beady red eye. And just like that, Claudine's Ashwinder went off the way Bella's had come from, and Bella's Ashwinder went toward where Claudine's Ashwinder had already passed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by FearlessLeader19 View Post
Of course Claudine was super focused on her Ashwinder. Anyone who knew her would know that she was fascinated by almost any creature. Due to her focus, she failed to notice that her Ashwinder was on a collision course with Bella’s. Not until her own Ashwinder paused did she actually size up the second one then looked about to see Bella.

“Hi, Bella.” Claudine grinned. “Seems as though these two a stare off.” A short one, though, which was a good thing because the seventh year could hardly wait to collect the eggs. She followed slowly, continuing in the direction she and the Ashwinder were already headed, clutching the jar with both hands to her chest.
Trailing after her ashwinder required concentration and Bella did her best to keep on her birds tail, but still be wary of her surroundings. With so many twists and turns in the maze it was easy to loose track and stumble into something. Bella stared ahead with open-mouthed shock when it came clear that her ashwinder was on a clear collision course with Claudine's. She held her breath when the two ashwinders passed each other dreading a fight. Luckily nothing happened and Bella could exhale deeply and grin back at her friend. "Hi Claudine, I guess we have two fiesty females. I dreaded a fight more than a stare off." Waving bye to her snake mate Bella changed her hold on her jar before continuing off in the maze after her ashwinder again.
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