August 26, 2019, 06:51:05 AM

Author Topic:  All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)  (Read 485 times)

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Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2019, 11:22:35 PM »
Joanna Hennings had ignored him entirely, staring at Enitan the whole time in a way that made Sam deeply uncomfortable. He was well aware that there were procedures that should be followed when a child lost one parent and went to live with the other, and that the circumstances of him meeting his daughter were very unusual. He also knew that there were people in the world who didn't always have the best interests of children at heart, and as much as he hated the way the woman was staring at Enitan, he supposed she needed to make sure the little girl was safe and hadn't been kidnapped or coerced into her new living arrangements.

But then she spoke. Not to Sam; she seemed to have entirely forgotten he was there. But to Enitan. Sam let out an involuntary gasp at the woman's words. She'd...known Tatiana? How..? He opened his mouth to ask, the closed it again because whatever was happening, he had a feeling that the Lead Hit Witch was going to be on their side now, especially with Enitan's explanation. Because that was how Tatiana's visions tended to work. Outside, gazing up at the sky...it was strange, given how those two things were so closely connected for her. Sam remembered her amusement when he'd told her one night during their travels in Africa that his best subject after divination had been astronomy, and her delight at how similar they were. At the time, Sam hadn't even realised he was a Seer, he'd just assumed that everyone had visions, and that hers were triggered by the stars.

Sam cleared his throat; he wasn't sure how else to attract the woman's attention. “Excuse me...you knew Enitan's mother?” echoing his daughter's words; he wasn't sure what else to say. He wanted to know when they'd known each other, if they'd been friends; if she'd known Enitan as well - no, that couldn't be right, they would have recognised each other. He wanted to know how they'd lost contact, why Enitan had ended up in a muggle orphanage, why she'd had to rely on the kindness of a man who wrote Quidditch reports for provincial magazines if this woman had known about her... But he wasn't prepared to ask any of those questions. For the first time, though, Sam began to relax, feeling that perhaps things were going to turn out alright after all.

Joanna Hennings [ British Ministry ]
112 Posts  •  28  •  Heterosexual  •  played by Ann
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #16 on: June 15, 2019, 07:11:58 PM »
Well, at least Enitan seemed comforted by Tatiana’s apparent star vision, even if hearing about it made Joanna want to scoff. To put so much faith in the wishy-washy, absolutely not reliable business of predictions and divination was pure stupidity in Joanna’s opinion. But she wasn’t going to share this viewpoint with the little girl. Instead she just didn’t react to the statement. If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

Both father and daughter looked the same as they asked her the same question. She wondered if they knew that. They might not appear similar but there was just something in that expression. In that curiosity. They were related. While it would be one of those things that connected them right now, Joanna was sure in a few years time Enitan would not want people to comment on her resemblance to her father. What teenage girl wanted to look like their parents? Even at 28, Joanna would be horrified if anyone told her that she looked like her dad. Merlin help them if they did. She did not want someone to look at her and see a fifty year old man.

And how did she begin to explain to a ten year old girl that she had met her mother on one of the worst days of her life? And that she wouldn’t have even remembered the woman in the wave of grief and numbness she was feeling had Tatiana not made her own attempt at comfort. Unable to stand unaided and still trying to comfort her. No matter the mourning that the Hennings went through, they would never have had closure if not for Tatiana Reed. And that, that had been worth so much. “We met in Azkaban.” Joanna said in answer, unwilling to expose her own family’s circumstances, but not thinking what her statement possibly implied instead.

“She checked herself out of St Mungos,” she began before stopping. There was no point in bringing up the past. It couldn’t be changed, and she would not talk ill of the dead to her own daughter. But still, Enitan could have had a completely different life if only Tatiana had stayed and let someone help her. Let Joanna help her. The logical part of her mind knew that Tatiana had not intentionally made her daughter suffer but emotionally… Enitan was a traumatised little girl who was distrustful of authority and it sounded like had lived on the streets because of Tatiana’s decision. Never mind. It had happened. There was little use in dwelling.

Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #17 on: June 15, 2019, 09:15:19 PM »
"You were..?" Sam let out a breath he hadn't realised he'd been holding and took another. Unsteady, shocked. It shouldn't have come as a surprise; so many people had been thrown into prison during the war. Their backgrounds or careers were entirely irrelevant; working for the Ministry didn't exempt you. It just meant you were ideally placed to be snatched up and imprisoned without anyone even needing to check where you were. "I'm so sorry..." he said, inadequately, having assumed that Ms Hennings was the one who had been sent to Azkaban.

Sam nodded, accepting the news at face value without thinking to question it. That fit with what he knew of Tatiana; she had always been more stubborn, more driven than he was; she would have gone looking for her daughter as soon as she was able to walk. Probably she had though she was healed sufficiently to find Enitan and for them to live safely again...and that had happened for a time, from what Enitan had told him. They'd been reunited, they'd found a place to live, and while "mum had been sick and got worse", they had had some time together before she'd... He wasn't going to think of that, not now. At least the woman's interest in his daughter was explained. Presumably she'd been spotted in Diagon Alley and the surrounding area over the preceding months, but for whatever reason the Ministry hadn't caught up with her. Hadn't bothered, or more likely Enitan had managed to dodge them long before they even realised she was there. Sam was surprised at the sudden fierce pride he felt in his daughter's ingenuity. It wasn't something he should have been proud of, but he'd known her for such a short time. Anything she did seemed incredible to him. He put an arm around her shoulders as he thought about the situation they were now in.

"Ms Hennings, I assume your concern was purely that Enitan was alone or uncared-for" he said, looking the woman straight in the face. "Believe me, I truly regret that I wasn't able to be there for her until a week ago. But we do have all her official documents, including the muggle ones Tatiana organised when they moved to England. It was my intention to bring them to the Ministry anyway, so you're welcome to check over whatever you need." he wasn't just putting on a helpful face now; Sam assumed he was talking with someone whose brusque manner hid her own horrific experiences in Azkaban and he wanted to make her job as simple as possible. About to continue, his stomach rumbled loudly, reminding him of the reason Enitan had come in here in the first place. That would have to wait though. He doubted they would be able to simply walk out of here just yet, and he had no intention of leaving Enitan alone for a moment.  The very thought of anyone trying to take her away appalled him, but he kept his voice polite and measured as he finished "So please, do whatever you feel you need to do. But my daughter stays with me."


Enitan Reed-Dickinson [ Underage Wizard ]
63 Posts  •  10  •  unknown  •  played by Miss Mori
  • "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
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Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #18 on: June 15, 2019, 09:55:15 PM »
Enitan looked down when Joanna said where she had met her mother. So she’d been in that terrible place as well… and had met her mother there. Enitan didn’t want to think about what sort of place it had been. Her mother had pointedly refused to answer any and all questions that the little girl had asked, but when she’d gotten sicker, more delirious, the daughter had been able to get some answers, even if they were disjointed and sometimes less clear. And she really really didn’t want to know what Dementors were. But her mother had been terrified of them. “Can…. can you un-glue me from the seat now please?” she asked softly, really just wanting to hug her father tightly, but that required her to be able to get up.

But obviously the woman was concerned about what had happened to Tatiana, and why she’d left. Enitan didn’t like it when people didn’t understand what was going on. She’d rather just tell them, because otherwise people started to just assume things. Like that her mother had been neglectful. That had made her angry when the people at the orphanage said as much. “She wanted to find me...” the girl said softly, before speaking a little louder. “And she was scared… because she didn’t know if they were gonna come back for her.” it hadn’t been fair. None of it had been fair, and there was nothing anyone could do about it. But she was with Sam now, and she had to… she had to stay.

When his stomach growled, Enitan’s hands went to her own, and the sad look on her face turned guilty. “I’m sorry I threw the food at you… I was scared. I thought you were gonna take me away like they did my mum.” but then sam spoke further, and said that she was going to stay with him; before she realized that it was possible that the woman still intended to take her away after all. Her eyes went wide and she clung tightly to Sam’s hand, this time with both of hers, staring up at Joanna with fear again.


Follow the stars, little one... They can't ever lead you wrong.

Joanna Hennings [ British Ministry ]
112 Posts  •  28  •  Heterosexual  •  played by Ann
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #19 on: June 27, 2019, 08:23:18 PM »
A flick of her wand released Enitan from her seat. Honestly, Joanna should have done it a lot earlier, when she first determined that the girl wasn’t going to run anymore. Except she had been distracted. It was a justifiable excuse, certainly no one could blame her for being shocked that she knew the child, but still, her job had to come before her emotions. She brushed aside Enitan’s apologies, after all, she had had much worse thrown at her over the course of her career. Food didn’t even leave a mark. “Honestly, it’s okay,” Joanna pacified, her brain already running ahead of the conversation and how to steer it back on topic.

Luckily Sam Dickinson did it for her. Oh Merlin, it wasn’t a good feeling when the ex-divination professor was more professional than her. The Hogwarts Divination Professor…. Yes, she definitely needed a sugar hit. It would not do not to be at the top of her game. Joanna nodded in response to his statement, although slightly confused as to why Sam would have all Enitan’s documents. It would have made more sense for her legal guardian to have them. “As long as Enitan’s legal guardian is fine with her staying with you then it’s perfectly acceptable.” Having listened to their story, Joanna had assumed that Tatiana’s friend had taken Enitan out of residential care legally. “Obviously, if you want to take over those responsibilities then it would be best to contact the Ministry sooner rather than later so that we can assess your suitability.”

There still lay the problem of Enitan’s legal guardian and their parenting capacity. Sam may have been around this time, but it sounded like there had been no adult supervision while Enitan was wandering around by herself earlier. “I will need to speak to your guardian though,” Joanna said, speaking directly to Enitan. “To clear up this situation. What is their name?” She was sure Mr Dickinson would not be particularly happy about his exclusion but, unfortunately, it wasn’t his signature and statement that she needed to go on the official forms. Although, it certainly would make her day easier if it was.

Enitan Reed-Dickinson [ Underage Wizard ]
63 Posts  •  10  •  unknown  •  played by Miss Mori
  • "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
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  • Trophy Closet Appleby Arrows Fan Halfblood Character
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #20 on: June 30, 2019, 04:36:49 AM »
As soon as she was Released, Enitan flung herself into Sam’s arms, burying her face in his shoulder for comfort. She was safe here, and it was better for her not to let go of him. Otherwise the woman might make her dissapear to some horrible place, not understanding how aparition worked. Enitan held tightly to his arm, standing beside her father as Joanna continued to speak, biting her lip. She looked down at the ground as the woman started to ask questions about a legal guardian, knowing full well she didn’t have anything of the sort, and she definitly wasn’t about to tell the woman where the ophanage was so that she could be dragged back there.

“You can’t make me go back there….” she whispered softly, clinging to him tightly, before realizing what the woman actually thought. She thought Hunter was her legal guardian. Enitan shook her head when the woman asked for the name, but knew she really didn’t have an answer; and Sam didn’t know enough to actually give an answer. “I don’t have one, a guardian. Not the kind you want… but I have my father. And you can’t take me away. I gave him all the important paperwork...”

In the young girl’s mind, that was obviously all that was needed. He had her special papers, so that meant he could keep her. She didn't understand everything that went on behind the scenes.


Follow the stars, little one... They can't ever lead you wrong.

Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #21 on: June 30, 2019, 05:06:00 PM »
“You threw the food..?” he said it lightly, sounding faintly amused, the trace of a smile on his lips. Now wasn't the time to be shocked or to scold, even if he hadn't understood why she'd done it. It would have been difficult in any case, as the little girl threw herself into his arms. If the chair had been a bit larger he might have let her sit on his lap, and to heck with any strange glances from the other people in the cafe (who were being strangely silent, he now noticed; doubtless not speaking lest they miss anything that was going on), but as it was he was content to let her stay where she was. Surely even the hardest-hearted ministry official could see it was obvious where she wanted to be.

But apparently it wasn't that simple, and the woman's next question was directed to Enitan herself. Her legal guardian..? Sam's mind reeled. There was no legal guardian hadn't been since Tatiana died, unless one counted whichever muggle ran the childrens' home she'd ended up in. From what he'd learned of the man, Sam doubted whether Tatiana's friend Hunter had paid much attention to things like legal guardians either, though there was no way he was going to say as much. He had yet to meet the man, but anyone who had helped hide muggleborns during the war AND looked after Enitan deserved the opportunity to slip beneath the Ministry's radar, if that was what they wanted. And suitability to take care of his own child? Somewhere in the back of his mind Sam understood the sense of this. He knew that not everyone had the best interests of children at heart, but at the same time he was irritated that some stranger wanted to assess his ability. And perhaps a little concerned as well. His flat was fine for now, but it was small, and there wasn't much space for a growing child...

Sam pushed the thought aside. Time to worry about that later. “When I said Enitan escaped from the childrens' home, that's unfortunately exactly what I meant.” he used the word deliberately, to show that he didn't approve of anything beneath the law, though secretly he was proud of his daughter's guts in leaving a situation she found intolerable despite her youth “She grew up around magic, she knew that wasn't where she belonged, but she had no way of finding anyone who would believe her. So she went to find her mother's friend, a sports reporter called Hunter Street, the one person she knew she could trust in the wizarding world. He wasn't her legal guardian; I don't imagine it even occurred to Enitan to mention the documents to him?” the statement was almost a question as he looked at the little girl for confirmation “and for his part, I don't suppose he asked. As I understand it, he helped several muggleborns to find shelter during the war and documentation wouldn't have been mentioned then - and he knew Enitan, he was only looking after her until she could find me. So I don't know where we go from here...but in the eyes of the Ministry, I doubt Enitan has had a true legal guardian since her mother passed away.”

Joanna Hennings [ British Ministry ]
112 Posts  •  28  •  Heterosexual  •  played by Ann
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #22 on: July 05, 2019, 08:13:42 PM »
She couldn’t help but listen with mounting horror and frustration. Did they have no respect for the legal system? Did they somehow view muggles as an inferior species despite Tatiana’s own muggle roots? A brief spark of interest flew through Joanna’s mind at the name ‘Hunter Street’ - she was definitely a fan of his writing and obviously that fact that he supported the superior team - but, it was not something she would allow herself to currently dwell on. She could fangirl later, perhaps when she inevitably had to interview him… Or after, because she was a professional. Not a simpering groupie.

Joanna instead allowed herself a deep breath before replying. It would do absolutely no good to fly off the handle, and honestly, that wasn’t really her style. “In the eyes of the law, what you have done is considered kidnapping,” before Joanna could get more out her mouth, Enitan began to interject. Unwilling to let herself be interrupted without explanation, Joanna held up her hand and shushed her. “As I was saying, even though you made the decision and chose to find your father, legally you are considered too young to make that choice.” She spoke directly to Enitan, as Joanna cared more about putting the child at ease than the adult. Mr Dickinson should have known that. No, that sounded far too combative. It would solve no problems and would only succeed in stroking the irritated part of her brain.

“And, Mr Dickinson,” Joanna added instead, trying to prevent the true sharpness of her tone from leaking out, “in the eyes of the Ministry, we recognise the validity of the muggle legal system as this is not 1998 anymore. Enitan’s legal guardian will be the muggle local authority in which she resided, with her case worker and residential staff taking on the daily duties.” But it would do no good to dwell on the issue. Actions needed to be taken, but there was no use placing herself on the opposite side of the fence from Sam Dickinson and Enitan. It wasn’t what Tatiana would have wanted…

“I think,” she began, slowly and surely, “that several things need to happen here.” Joanna folded her hands across the table, she would take absolutely no disagreements on this. “First of all, we should perhaps move this somewhere else.” The rest of the people in the cafe were getting too nosey for her liking, and honestly, she felt sorry for the poor owner. “I will need to see any of Enitan’s documents that you have.” She would also need to decide what to do, but there was no reason to make a decision completely off the cuff. That wasn’t her style.

(permission to NPC Enitan granted by Mori)

Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #23 on: July 13, 2019, 08:33:20 PM »
Sam was beginning to feel annoyed again. Kidnapping? Had this woman got no sense of proportion? Not trusting himself to speak at that moment, he allowed her to continue, already certain that he wasn't going to like what he heard. One didn't have to be a Seer to know some things. The one thing in Joanna Hennings' favour was that she had the grace to actually talk to Enitan rather than about her. Sam may have only known the child for a week but he already knew that one of the things his daughter loathed most in the world was being talked about and treated like a child, even though she was clearly too young to make her own decisions aobut most things.

But as much as he hated what was happening, Sam knew that the worst thing he could do was to react angrily. This woman was from the Ministry and first impressions counted. If she was on their side then he wouldn't need to convince anyone else to assist - and besides, he had the feeling that she was trying very hard not to react emotionally herself. When she said that the muggle childrens home was indeed Enitan's legal guardian he heard the little girl gasp and felt her clinging desperately to his arm, tight enough that she might cut off the circulation if she clung there too long. He would let her; now he simply raised his opposite hand and put it over both her hers.

”So when my daughter turned up out of nowhere, I was supposed to take her back there and say 'sorry she ran away, here, you can have her back, now?'" was what he wanted to say. No doubt it was what Enitan wanted him to say, too. But instead, Sam took a deep breath. “Yes, that makes sense. Hopefully you'll be able to find out where the orphanage was located and help us sort that out? Because Enitan doesn't remember the address...” Or doesn't want to, Sam thought, with a glance at the little girl. He'd asked where it was, but apart from the vaguest of descriptions he had little clue other than it was probably somewhere in one of the London boroughs. There were a lot of other things he wanted to say, particularly that anyone with half a brain would realise that if he'd gone back to the childrens' home the muggle authorities would have had a lot of questions, and that while legal process was there for a reason, surely this was a time when the rules needed to be bent for the good of all concerned.

He also had already said that he had intended to come to the Ministry and ask for exactly this to be sorted out, so threatening him with a kidnapping charge was entirely ludicrous, not to mention scaring his daughter.  But still Sam kept his temper, because it seemed that they might be getting somewhere. Stay polite, agreeable. Co-operative. “Yes. That's a good idea. I imagine you intend that we head over to your office, but for the moment I would suggest we go back to my father's shop. I left a customer, and I'll need to close up right after. Then we could head over to our - that is, my flat - and collect the documents I mentioned.” Despite his annoyance, Sam spoke clearly and reasonably, as if he agreed that the best course of action was indeed the cold, heartless, uncaring legal one. He wasn't quite ready to leave yet, though. With a smile in his daughter's direction, he finished “But before any of that, I'm going to have to insist that I buy Enitan and myself lunch, seeing as neither of us have eaten yet. Can I get you something? A hot chocolate, or a cake, or..?”

[ditto. I mean, permission granted for Enitan's reactions by Mori]

Enitan Reed-Dickinson [ Underage Wizard ]
63 Posts  •  10  •  unknown  •  played by Miss Mori
  • "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
  • *
  • Trophy Closet Appleby Arrows Fan Halfblood Character
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #24 on: July 16, 2019, 03:43:17 AM »
Enitan was quiet while the two adults did their talking. Her father was doing a good job of explaining things, and the girl was, at the moment, worried she might start crying. She didn’t want to start crying, not in front of all these people. This was the worst. The absolute worst possible thing that she could have imagined. She’d finally found her father, and now it was all going to be ruined because she couldn’t prove it. If she’d been older maybe she could have figured out a way to prove it, but right now she had to rely on Hunter for that sort of stuff. Or more likely her father, technically, but Hunter had always pulled through for her. If he found out she was back in that horrible muggle place again, would he come get her? Would Sam? Or would he insist on playing by the rules? He’d been a teacher after all, and they always insisted on doing things by the rules, even when the rules were unfair. But the very real threat of having to go back to that horrible place was all that consumed her mind. To the point where after that point, she’d basically tuned everything out, panic written all over her at the mere mention that she might have to return there. She didn’t belong there! She belonged with her father...

“You can’t make me go back there.” her quiet voice cracked, and she held tighter to Sam. it took her a moment to realize that Sam was… agreeing with her? No… no no no….. That couldn’t be true. He wouldn’t. But maybe… yes the papers. He must be hoping they could find something in the papers that would let her stay with him. The letter from her mother maybe? It was written to sam, explaining that Enitan was his child. That would work right? Maybe? She felt guilty now, knowing sam would have to close the store again. Twice in a week. Because of her. But they could go home. “I’m not hungry...” she finally spoke again, her voice not cracking this time, but still distressed. In fact, she wanted to throw up, which was the opposite of eating. She was pretty sure if she tried to eat, it would just all come back anyways, so it was better if she didn’t.


Follow the stars, little one... They can't ever lead you wrong.

Joanna Hennings [ British Ministry ]
112 Posts  •  28  •  Heterosexual  •  played by Ann
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #25 on: July 28, 2019, 08:37:43 PM »
An agreement. Finally they were getting somewhere. “Yes, yes,” Joanna said dismissively, “it will be a dawdle to find Enitan’s muggle records.” It would be, all she would have to do is find Enitan’s name in missing persons and trace it back to the original report. Joanna was confident a few confundus and obliviate charms and she would have all the information she needed. After all, she would need to edit Enitan’s muggle paperwork so that it appeared that she had been adopted and no longer needed any kind of checking up on. Obviously that was now the job for the Ministry. Well, at least the muggle authority would have one less job on their plate.

Now that she had Mr Dickinson’s agreement, Joanna felt her hackles dropping. She did not want to be combative, but she had to do her job. At least he seemed to understand. “That is perfectly acceptable,” Joanna told him in response to his plan. “I will need to assess the suitability of your residence to house a minor anyway, so it makes sense to kill two birds with one stone.” Although, him leaving a customer unattended. Well, that didn’t scream responsibility, did it?

She shook her head when he offered to buy her something to eat. “No thank you,” she refused politely. He had honed in on sweet things though and the thought of a cake right now sounded like a bliss. A slice of cake obviously, Joanna wasn’t greedy enough to eat the whole thing… she really wasn’t. Probably. Maybe it was a small cake.

“What have you been eating?” Joanna asked, when Enitan refused food. Had she been receiving a balanced diet under the care of Mr Dickinson or was he feeding her the same things he had just offered Joanna. Had he been ensuring that she ate enough for a growing girl but at the same time didn’t overeat? She had vanished their previous lunch before seeing what it had been, so that would provide no clues. “It is important to have a well-rounded diet and regular meals.” That was directed at Enitan but Joanna was sure Sam had also heard it.

She would observe to see what Sam did in response to Enitan’s refusal though. It would certainly tell her a lot about his parenting ability. Would he let her away with not having a meal? Would he insist she ate something? Would he bribe her into eating with something unhealthy? There were many routes to take and Joanna honestly could say each had their merits. There was certainly no one-right way to parent.

Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #26 on: August 02, 2019, 08:26:31 PM »
Sam was hating every minute of this, but five years teaching at Hogwarts, most of those as deputy headmaster, had taught him a few things. Firstly, that people were far more likely to help if you were polite and pleasant. Secondly, he had witnessed students being displaced as a result of the terrible aftermath of the war, and he remembered something of the process when a child was adopted by an aunt or distant cousin. Once or twice the school had been asked to provide documentation about students - names and birthdates to match with other official records, mostly - so he had a vague idea of what needed to happen. And he didn't like it one bit, because he knew there was a possibility that Enitan wouldn't be allowed to come home with him tonight. But he wasn't going to mention that, because it was possible that things had changed in the past couple of years, and it was equally possible that they might not be able to find anywhere for her to stay at short notice, and he hung onto that thought even as he outwardly remained calm.

Shh...it's okay. Nobody's going to make you go back there. We just need to make sure the Ministry gets to read your Mum's letter, and then they'll say they want you to stay with me" Sam was careful not to suggest that this might happen today. and equally careful not to say that it might not happen. "And I know you're not hungry right now, but we'll get you something for later, okay"  At least Ms Hennings had agreed with his suggestion - not that he was really prepared to do anything else - of going back to the shop and then on to their flat. He then addressed the woman directly, for the first time as if she were a normal person rather than a Ministry official. "Can you watch her for a minute while I get the food, please?" he glanced at Enitan and winked, hoping this would convey to her that he thought she didn't really need watching but that they needed to be nice to this woman. Then he headed up to the counter and reordered sandwiches, crisps* and cold drinks, this time adding a couple of apples and - despite what Ms Hennings had said - three slices of chocolate cake to his purchase. Then he returned to the table, everything nearly packaged into a strong paper bag.

"Can you look after this?" he asked, handed the bag to Enitan. He suspected she would be feeling bad for throwing their first lunch at Ms Hennings and wanted to show her that he trusted her. Then without sitting down, he continued "Alright Ms Hennings, shall we?"

*chips

Enitan Reed-Dickinson [ Underage Wizard ]
63 Posts  •  10  •  unknown  •  played by Miss Mori
  • "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."
  • *
  • Trophy Closet Appleby Arrows Fan Halfblood Character
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #27 on: August 03, 2019, 04:11:23 AM »
Enitan peered at Joanna from beside sam, looking suspicious when she said no to Sam’s offer of cake. What kind of psychopath said no to cake? Granted she didn’t think that she could eat cake right now either, but Joanna wasn’t being threatened with being dragged away from the only family she had left and stuffed back somewhere horrible that she didn’t belong. She belonged with her father. And it wasn’t fair that the ministry had to be so mean about this. They didn’t take other kids away from their parents when they were born to them, until they made sure their houses were sufficiently child safe, or check up constantly on kids. Otherwise there probably would have been a much bigger orphanage. But maybe wizards were different… still, that didn’t make sense. But Sam’s words were reassuring, and the girl was starting to look less terrified. That was right. Her mom’s letter was as good as her word. She’d wrote it. Most of it anyways. Enitan had to finish it, because her mom was too sick. But that shouldn’t matter. Everything was still spelled correctly, even if Tatiana had to spell some of it.


She let out a grump when Sam asked the ministry lady to watch her. That seemed silly, like asking a puppy snatcher to watch your puppies while you bought a cup of tea. Besides, she didn’t need watching. He was only ten feet away, and he usually let her walk across the street by herself, so long as she stayed where he could see her. Of course that hadn’t exactly worked out well, but only because the Ministry lady had to go sticking her head where it didn’t belong. He had been a teacher! They wouldn’t have trusted him with dozens of kids if they didn’t think he could handle one. But this woman apparently hated teachers too. She probably failed all her classes in school. Enitan glared at Joanna the entire time sam was gone, not even realizing he was back until he handed her the bag.

It was a lot heavier then the one she’d gotten, and looking down in it, Enitan could see why. Despite having said she wasn’t hungry, she really wanted to eat one of the apples. But she didn’t have any free hands with the bag in both her arms. It was also too heavy to throw at Joanna again. Was that why he bought so much food? “Are we going home now?” she asked hopefully. She really wanted Bindi… Needed to hug her. Bindi would make everything better. But something told her that Bindi biting the mean lady would only make things worse.


Follow the stars, little one... They can't ever lead you wrong.

Joanna Hennings [ British Ministry ]
112 Posts  •  28  •  Heterosexual  •  played by Ann
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #28 on: August 03, 2019, 02:35:00 PM »
It seemed that Sam’s response of Enitan refusing to eat was to still buy something with the hope she may eat it later. Joanna approved, given that Enitan had sat in silence with her and refused to answer any questions. But, for a ten year old the kid sure had perfected a glare, even if it kind of just looked like someone had taken away her kitten. Joanna had caught the wink Sam had passed along to Enitan, although just brushed it off. They may think that this was some kind of joke and unnecessary, but she certainly didn’t think so. And Mr Dickinson better be taking it seriously if he wanted her to help.

She could have sworn the bag was a lot bigger than the last one, but her only evidence of that was the fact that it did not look like Enitan would manage to throw it again. But fear was a power motivator to perform feats of strength, so maybe Joanna was wrong. Mr Dickinson looked eager to leave, and Joanna shared that sentiment. A cafe was no place to continue this. Scraping her chair backwards, she stood and gestured towards the door. “After you,” given that she did not actually know where they were going.

It turns out the Antique shop was directly across the street, as she had already been told. She inspected the premises as she entered, it was mainly clean and mostly tidy. Although, no place for a child. It was a place of business with lots of historic artefacts. “And what do you do here?” Joanna asked Enitan curiously. Nothing about the situation made her think it, but the question had to be asked. Was Sam only interested in her to provide cheap labour? It may seem unlikely, but she had unfortunately seen worse over the years.

But the person she actually wanted to question was Sam, and she had a list of questions a mile long, just about the shop. “So, the shop is in your parent’s name?” she began, still looking around the place with interest. “Are you an official employee?” Basically, did he have a job or was he just helping his parents out? Was he financially stable enough to look after a child. “How do you propose to work and provide childcare at the same time?” Joanna kept her face impartial throughout all her questions, posing them as casual remarks rather than the fact her words could be regarded as intrusive by some.

She’d need to see income reports and Gringott’s statements, but they could come later, right now she would just concentrate on getting a feel for him. See how genuine he was and whether he was bothered to make the effort to actually look after Enitan first.

Samuel Dickinson [ Professor ]
1346 Posts  •  38  •  straight  •  played by Carys
Re: All is Not as it Seems (Joanna/Sam)
« Reply #29 on: August 05, 2019, 09:55:30 PM »
Seemingly for the first time, Sam became aware that there were other people in the shop. People who were trying to hear what was going on whilst being equally careful to look like they were completely fascinated with page seventeen of the Daily Prophet. His heart sank, because that was something he would need to deal with along with everything else. The last thing he wanted was his family hearing that a Ministry official had attempted to take custody of his daughter in a public place. Well, a quick Floo message to his father would serve a dual purpose - he could call the older man in to run his own shop for the rest of the day; and Basil Dickinson would be quick enough to realise the truth. So Sam led the way across to the shop, noted the closed sign with some surprise until he opened the door and was greeted by the cheerful elderly witch who was by now most of the way through her cup of tea. She immediately told Sam what a "nice young man" he was, began to pull out her purse and then checked herself to politely enquire of Ms Hennings whether she was Sam's girlfriend, then chuckled and apologised and said she was sure they were 'just old friends'.

Sam bit his cheek to stop himself from smiling though he was sure Enitan would have less success, and dealt with the woman's purchase swiftly, agreeing that yes, it was a lovely day for the time of year and he was sure his father would be around next time she visited the shop. "Goodbye Madam Danvers, thank you!" he called as she left, wondering how long that transaction had taken (less than two minutes all told - it had just felt longer). But it seemed that Enitan and Ms Hennings were talking about something, so he breathed a sigh of relief. "Did you want to put that down somewhere?" he asked Enitan, thinking that she might have changed her mind about eating now she was actually carrying the food.

The brief respite wasn't to last, though. Of course, the woman had to start asking him questions, and the first one made him roll his eyes inwardly. Of course he wasn't an official employee! What sort of family business worked like that?! But thankfully, before he could respond with what he really wanted to say, she continued with some more questions, and these, thankfully, were a lot easier to answer. "When I decided to take a break from teaching, I had five years' worth of wages saved. As you can imagine, one doesn't have many outgoings as a Hogwarts professor, so I..." as he was speaking, he was also scribbling a note onto a piece of parchment "...have the luxury of not needing to work for the moment. For now, I've been concentrating on my painting and yes, assisting in the shop most afternoons, because it's made things easier for my father. He's seemed ten years younger this year while he's been searching out new antiques for his favourite customers..." he smiled, because the honest truth was that he didn't need to work for the moment. He could easily take the next year off until the time came for Enitan to go to Hogwarts, and then...

He felt a surge of anxiety. He couldn't let her go there alone. What if she wasn't safe? What if...and there was something else. Sam realised that he hadn't said when I left teaching but when I took a break from teaching. As if he planned to go back. Well. When Enitan's attention was momentarily elsewhere, Sam slid the parchment across to Joanna.

I want to explain my apparent lack of job and the circumstances that led to me leaving Hogwarts but please, not in front of Enitan. She doesn't know how involved I was during the war and I want it to stay that way until she's less traumatised by her mother's death.

He hoped the woman would have the sense to not follow that line of questioning any further. "Speaking of my father - give me a moment please, I'm just going to let him know what's going on so we won't need to close the shop for the rest of the day." Probably Ms Hennings would think he was stalling or being impolite or something, but Sam didn't much care right now. He would feel a lot better about this if his father knew what was happening.

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