Author Topic:  one step closer [manon]  (Read 292 times)

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  • Offline Donatella Bertinelli
  • one step closer [manon]
    « on: May 02, 2018, 09:49:50 PM »
    Why must group projects exist? I would do much better on my own, especially in L'Art des Potions Cordiale. It would be quicker too.

    That was everything Donatella could think of for the past few days. It was March, spring had officially come, nature was back to life, flowers were blooming, the trees were green, bunnies, pixies and other beautiful magical creatures would make their appearance once more on the school’s lands. With so many beautiful events taking place this month, Donatella couldn’t afford spending too much time on her homework, especially since she knew everything’d be much faster if she did it all alone.

    However, it wasn’t her partner’s fault – Manon had proved herself to be a reliable partner and Donatella certainly cooperated nicely with her. So far. Hopefully, them brewing a potion together as part of their homework and not classwork would go equally well. The two agreed to meet, at Donatella’s suggestion, in front of the zia Drina’s private potion stores. It was a far better place to meet up, as everyone would go to the greenhouses and Donatella was certain she wouldn’t be able to find Manon there easily. Plus, she had a key. To zia Drina’s private potion stores. If that wasn’t the best meeting spot, then Donatella didn’t know what was.

    It was early afternoon and the Bellefeuille finished feeding Gioconda, and after picking up her bunny, in addition to several rolls of parchments and a quill, Donatella made her way out of her dormitory. Neither of the two girls had classes that afternoon, so it had been the best day to meet up. Ignoring the fact that Donatella could’ve easily spent the afternoon hugging her favourite cherry tree, Alberico. She put her bunny on her shoulder, and after arranging her skirt, she went down the stairs. “Oh.” Donatella stopped, realising she didn’t put her shoes on. “Eh.” She remarked, shrugging it off (carefully enough so Gioconda won’t fall off her shoulder), and headed towards the meeting spot.

    “Ciao, bambina.” Donatella cheerfully said as soon as her eyes fell on Manon’s figure. “The summer uniform looks good on you.” Remarked the Bellefeuille, stopping right in front of the other girl. Eyes analysing her year mate, Nata nodded once in approval, her ponytail noticeably swaying in the process. “Yes, it suits you.” Her smile widened. “Much better than me. I miss so much the shorter skirts we had as underclassmen, I mean… this lacks proper mobility in my opinion.” Never mind that her own skirt was rolled up a bit, over her knees, to compensate for that very fact.

    “I have the ingredients list and the instructions, with my own comments added on the side.” Donatella handed over two of her several parchments to the Papillonlisse, as she turned around, to face the door. The fifth year put her hand on the handle, and pushed once, eyebrows furrowing as she realised it was locked. She moaned lightly, straightening her back as she gazed at the door, her head slowly tilting to the side. “I can’t believe zia Drina locked this. No.” She nodded in disapproval. “Must’ve been the house elves. To protect the ingredients from the giants.” She sighed, and then turned her gaze towards Manon for a few moments. “Anyway.” Donatella pulled out the key from her pocket and quickly opened the door, pushing it gently with her knee.

    “There we go. The best ingredients for our project.” She put Gioconda on a shelf to roam around as she stepped in, Donatella heading instantly towards the latter, carefully going past a cauldron which still had a potion brewing in it (she had left it there yesterday and thankfully no house elf took it yet). “Oooh.” Nata cooed, as soon as she spotted some fresh gillyweed on the higher ledge which definitely wasn’t there yesterday, and therefore needed proper inspection.

    If there were new ingredients around, aside from potion brewing, then she would definitely not regret not going outside this afternoon.

    [member=23238]Manon Bernard[/member] [member=23701]Emily[/member]

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  • Offline Manon Bernard
  • Re: one step closer [manon]
    « Reply #1 on: May 13, 2018, 08:47:50 AM »
    Manon had always been alright at potion-making. It was straightforward enough, enough so that for years she considered it among the less interesting classes she took. Its straightforwardness, however, made it an easy choice of subject to fall by the wayside when time and effort were limited. She was thoroughly glad to have been paired this term with someone who was willing and able to steer the ship. Last year she’d sat next to a fellow Papillonlisse boy who seemed incapable of paying attention to anything for more than ten seconds, and she’d had to do all the work herself. It had been an absolute inconvenience.

    She didn’t want to be that kind of partner to Donatella Bertinelli. Manon made sure to at least attempt to be helpful, but it was quite fine with her that Donatella seemed to prefer to take the reins. And not in a perfectionistic way either; Manon was intimately familiar with the distrust of others’ work. Her partner just seemed to be genuinely enthusiastic about the subject. Good for Donatella, she figured. Good for Manon too.

    Outside the private storeroom, she fanned her face with her hand to cool the sweat on her forehead. She’d walked here quickly for fear of being late and overheated immediately. Did this happen to other people? she wondered, as she did every time. Surely all her other classmates should be as gross as she was. Yet they never seemed to sweat, never seemed anything less than perfectly presentable—even when wearing no shoes with a rabbit on one shoulder and their skirt rolled several times at the waist. “Hi,” said Manon as her partner joined her.

    Eyes darting back down toward Donatella’s bare feet, Manon shifted self-consciously. She’d been uncomfortable all year about the more fitted skirt that the older girls wore: it emphasized her misshapen hips, fell at an awkward length on her calves. Even though she was being complimented, drawing attention to it in any capacity just reminded her of her worry afresh. She smiled politely. Hopefully that would do as a response. She stood back to let Donatella open the door, and watched her produce a key when prevented from doing so.

    Donatella promptly wandered off into the “best” ingredients. “Is this fair, if nobody else can get in?” Manon asked after her. “What’s the difference between this and the regular stores?” Comparing the quality of two dragon spleens was certainly beyond her, though she didn’t like to admit it. She’d been at Beauxbatons for four and a half years already. But it wasn’t as if she could judge two slightly different normal vegetables or cuts of meat very well either. It all tasted similar enough to her in the end.

    She didn’t really mind, morally, but she didn’t want any accusations of unfairness to come their way. Her partner seemed to be quite close to the professor. It was an upside to being muggle-born, Manon supposed: there was nothing but merit to be judged on. The padding footsteps stopped and she looked up. Donatella was very interested in something, possibly related to their project, but possibly irrelevant. Her enthusiasm, though mostly useful, took her on tangents at times. “I’ll just…start going down the list, then,” said Manon. Hopefully everything was arranged here in an easily navigable way, or else she’d just have to wait for Donatella to be interested in finding all their ingredients.

  • Offline Donatella Bertinelli
  • Re: one step closer [manon]
    « Reply #2 on: May 21, 2018, 02:41:15 PM »
    Upon hearing Manon’s words, Donatella arched an eyebrow, and as soon as she picked up the jar of gillyweed, she carefully turned around on the latter. She didn’t step down, but simply shifted enough to properly face Manon. The glance was only for a second, as Donatella started opening the jar as soon as she started talking. “Well, technically speaking, anyone can get in.” The Bellefeuille started sniffing the open jar, eyes closing for a moment, the pleasure of feeling the fresh scent of the sea getting the best of her. “Should they be smart enough to ask for access, of course.” She added with a giggle, fully aware that not many of their year mates were brave enough to directly approach professors. However, asking for permission to enter the professor’s private potions stores was nothing but honourable, and therefore fair. It reflected a student’s passion and desire to flourish. It certainly wasn’t her fault that not everyone wanted to succeed in their academic life.

    “And, in the end, if we were to talk about fairness, zia Drina is Head of Papillonlisse.” Nata smirked teasingly. “One would expect that half of your house already has access to these stores, so me being here is, in fact, bringing equality, and, as a result, fairness.” It was in a Bertinelli’s blood to maintain honour and fairness, therefore Donatella would surely not do anything that would harm her family’s reputation. Though, she assumed Manon would not be familiar with that aspect, since she wasn’t part of the wizarding community prior to her attendance at Beauxbatons. Donatella didn’t mind explaining though, however, it would be safe to say that someone else wouldn’t have asked her such a question. And even more, she wouldn’t have replied so nicely to someone who should have already known of her name’s reputation.

    “Here.” Donatella pulled out a gillyweed and stretched out her arm in Manon’s direction, for the Papillonlisse to take the plant. “It’s so fresh that you can even feel the sea, the water. It’s as if it’s calling you, telling you to eat it and go swim in the deepest of waters, to simply just become one with the mermen. Only an elite potions master would have access to such delicacies. In a regular shop, they’re much drier.” Nata nodded in disapproval, remembering how sad she’d felt the first time she’s visited the potions supplies store in the Chatoeil. Being the daughter of a potioneer had certainly spoiled her; the girl expected nothing but the freshest ingredients for her potions.

    She did recall Manon pointing out they had a list. “Ooh.” The Bellefeuille cooed instinctively, green eyes widening with excitement as she’s spotted yet another novelty. Today was definitely a good day for potions ingredients. “Salamander blood.” She pointed behind Manon, encouraging the girl to grab a vial. “The phial should be warm, too.” Well the colour was the right amount of intense, and so Nata could only assume that the salamander blood as fresh as possible. “Then we also need powdered Griffin claw, an arm bone, a snake fang, and purple thorn blossom.” The fifth year said the ingredients of the strength potion by heart, by now having memorised all the instructions.

    Donatella took a deep breath, trying to remember where the rest of the ingredients would be. “Should be… second to the right on the third shelf, top shelf, lowest shelf in the left, and the cabinet in the corner.” She enumerated them, and then carefully turned around again on the latter. “I can get the ones on the top, since I’m already here.” The Venetian then carefully climbed two more steps, to reach the section which contained arm bones.
    « Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 09:02:21 PM by Lena »

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  • Offline Manon Bernard
  • Re: one step closer [manon]
    « Reply #3 on: June 13, 2018, 10:19:02 AM »
    Manon snorted softly. She didn’t elaborate because she couldn’t argue with it, really—if the stores were apparently open to askers it wasn’t technically cheating. But still she disliked the technicality of the situation. In her opinion, an opportunity open only to those who knew to ask for it was the sort of thing that bred elitism. She should have expected it, she figured. Elitism was everywhere she turned in the wizarding world…but still its presence often managed to take her aback.

    She turned to the shelf beside her, glancing over the bottles at eye level to see if their salamander blood was among them. Donatella’s attitude was beginning to make her glad they’d rarely shared their opinions on anything besides their potions and the weather. Did that sort of thing happen? Manon’s head of house seemed to like her well enough, but Professor Alverez wasn’t giving her, or to her knowledge anyone, special privileges just for being sorted one way—and neither should any other teacher be. She held her tongue and moved aside a large dark bottle. If she just ignored it they’d end up on another neutral subject soon enough.

    Donatella called to her and she turned back, to find a lump of moist tendrils extended in her direction. Manon couldn’t stop herself from grimacing as the slimy plant touched her hand. “Right, yeah,” she said. It was certainly wet and salty, which seemed like what her partner was waxing poetic about. “I see.” Awkwardly, she held it back out to Donatella, hoping she had been expected to give it back. She wasn’t sure where the gillyweed was kept, after all, and wasn’t keen to mess up the professor’s organization by accident. Nor was she really keen to keep touching the gillyweed itself.

    Donatella knew where everything was, of course. Manon felt sort of stupid that she’d been wasting time looking. “Alright,” she said, watching her partner climb further up the ladder before tucking the salamander blood in her bent elbow and returning to the other shelves. “I’ll get the powder, then.”

    As she hunted for the griffin claw, the tiny rabbit who’d rode in on Donatella’s shoulder hopped across the shelf toward her. “Hi there,” cooed Manon, forgetting her mission at once. She lightly held out a hand for the bunny to sniff. Did they do that? It might have just been dogs that did, she wasn’t sure. But Donatella’s rabbit didn’t seem to mind. After a couple experimental pets, Manon lifted the little rabbit off the shelf and held it against her chest.

  • Offline Donatella Bertinelli
  • Re: one step closer [manon]
    « Reply #4 on: June 25, 2018, 12:14:07 PM »
    The Papillonlisse seemed disinterested in the topic of ingredients, which Donatella didn’t particularly appreciate. Ingredients were essential for potion brewing after all, and the Bellefeuille was committed on always achieving perfection. She didn’t dwell on the topic further though, for it did not interest her. In the end, Donatella was going to make sure that she would be in charge of the potion brewing, giving minimum tasks to Manon. She wasn’t going to entrust a person who didn’t appreciate zia Drina’s highly superior gillyweed with her own grade.

    “Perfect.” Donatella said especially cheerfully, keeping her always present bubbly surface. She placed the gillyweed jar back in its rightful place, and then reached out for the case which held the arm bones. She opened it, and carefully chose the best looking one, after thoroughly examining the texture, length, width of each one. By now she was grateful she could do it instinctively, for it took ages before until Donatella would pick one. Her experience with potions was finally showing, even in the most remote tasks. The girl couldn’t help but to smile at the thought, and placed the case back, glad to be going back down once more. Being up the latter with no shoes on hadn’t been the most comfortable, and she couldn’t figure out why exactly.

    Reaching the floor, its coldness felt relaxing underneath her feet. She took a deep breath and lowered her gaze, figuring out if perhaps she should accio her shoes. Or at least her socks. But before Donatella could decide on the matter, her attention was caught by her potions partner’s exclamation, done in a rather uncharacteristic tone. Or, at least, a tone in which she personally hadn’t heard Manon talk with before. Her eyes widened with interest, wondering who could’ve sparked such a reaction from the other girl.

    “Gioconda.” Donatella said her pet’s name instinctively, a particularly warm smile appearing on her face when noticing that her year mate had managed to get the little rabbit snuggle up to her chest. “That’s quite the feat.” She remarked, especially impressed. “Fiorellino generally doesn’t warm up to people.” Well, there were a few exceptions among her own house mates, but not that many. One or two of her dormitory mates, along with two of the boys. But the rest? No, Gioconda was especially picky and elitist. Of course, since she seemed to be getting along so well with Manon, Donatella found it irrelevant to mention that it wasn’t that Gioconda was afraid of people, like her words were alluding. On the contrary, it was rare for the bunny not to bite people, along with gracing them with her widdling skills. 

    Regardless of how she thought of Manon only moments ago, Donatella had to admit that if Gioconda liked her, perhaps she could also not hold the other girl’s disinterest in gillyweed against her. Who knew, maybe she was just afraid of water. Anything could be possible.

    Donatella drew closer, and she leaned against the shelf, gingerly placing her arms around her waist as she gazed in Manon’s direction, her eyes focusing on the delicacy with which the other fifth year was handling her darling girl. Gioconda herself seemed rather pleased as well. The Bellefeuille’s features softened even more, genuinely glad that her dearest was at ease. The giants’ presence at Beauxbatons stressed Gioconda a lot, and Donatella had a hard time keeping her bunny calm, reason as of why she’d allowed it to rest on her shoulder the majority of the time nowadays.

    “Do you have any pets, Manon?” She asked equally delicately, the gentleness of the atmosphere getting to her.

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