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If You Must  PV Eris 

The halls of Hogwarts were always crowded during the day, especially between classes. Students would flood out of classrooms as they went to their next destination. Whether it was the Library, another class, the Grounds, their dorms, or somewhere else entirely, the entire castle would be alive with activity. Ben was leaving History of Magic class to head up to the Library. It was break time and the Ravenclaw had some studying to do. The classroom quickly emptied but Ben purposefully lagged behind as to be one of the last ones out the door. Ben gave a respectful nod to the Professor before slipping into the chaos.

Hogwarts had many floors between the History of Magic classroom and the Library. Ben would need to travel upstairs quite a few times and go through a few corridors to reach his destination. A grimace accompanied him as he pressed ahead hoping not to be bothered by anyone. Disguising himself had become too much work so he just hoped for the best now. Ben paused as he reached the floor for the Library, taking in the hallway to see who was here. It would be awkward to bump into Bloom or follow her into the Library. It seemed clear of obvious people he intended to avoid for now.

Ben strode down the corridor towards the Library slowly, keeping an eye out around him. The rumors around the school worried him a little, but most people seemed to not care or not blame him. That did not stop him from being cautious though. Once he reached the Library door he would peek inside to see if anyone was in his path. Hopefully no one in the corridor would interrupt him.

If You Must  PV Eris 

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The girl had been the subject of rumors last year, due to her strange heritage, and now she was subject to even more rumors about her murderous intent to hunt and track down all those responsible for the pain of last year, including Ben Eckenrode. Yet rumors were just rumors, and while there was a basic truth to all rumors circulating around the school, the details were muddled and warped by the telltale gossip of young, scared, children.

Eris Fawley had spent many unfruitful, dull, days wandering the hallways to avoid the struggles of being spotted and being ridiculed with questions or assurances that she was dong the wrong thing. Eris doubted herself sometimes, but she knew there was a group behind her. Eris was not alone in her intent to find and destroy the chaos of school, but the girl hardly remembered Ben as an evil child.

The last time they had interacted, both had been making crappy muggle references on the field during the Great snowball fight. The only reason Eris still remembered the brown haired boy was because his face had been etched into her memories through fervent scanning of all rooms and muttered questions to determine who the masked man--no, boy-- truly was.

The two shared History of Magic. The joint Ravenclaw and Gryffindor lesson had been boring to say the least, and made worse by the stiffing rage and fear mounting in Eris at the sight of the brown haired ravenclaw boy, who she would hardly have noticed if not for the chatty ravenclaws who pointed out that Ben was, in fact, in the class with them.

Her anger was burnt out by the clear passiveness in Ben's eyes, but Eris still waited by the door for Ben to come out of the classroom. He might have seemed weak, but Eris didn't trust any of the professors of the school to stand their ground against a boy who had nearly destroyed her and Dorian. The professors might have been strong once, but their brains were addled by whatever crazy adult things they cared about more than their students.

When Ben walked out, Eris attempted to follow after him. It took less than two seconds for her to get lost in the crowd, a struggling force of a small red head jumping up and down to track one of the numerous brown haired boys with blue and gold embellishments. Eris put up more of a fight than usual, shoving and kicking at anyone who tried to get into the minuscule first year's path. She was a force of nature to be reckoned with, though it wasn't clear what she was feeling from the conflicting mix of emotions pouring over the small child's face, as she took off at a sprint to make it to the outside of the library.

Feeling a burst of pleasant surprise at the fact that Ben was actually by the room, Eris cleared her throat and grabbed at the sleeve of the taller boy. She let go after a second, stomach tightening with apprehension, as she tried to remind herself that she just needed to ask Ben questions. She couldn't afford to get into more trouble at the current moment, no. She just needed to ask him why he had done what he did, and if he really had control over his actions. Yet, how to word that? Wrinkling her nose and realizing she had the attention of the boy at this point, Eris crossed her arms and attempted a fierce expression, which was ruined by the clear tangent of wide eyes, searching the area like a jackrabbit ready to run away.

"Ben. I'm Eris, but I guess you know that already. You said you were going to kill me last year, when you wore that mask. I figure you owe me an explanation, but I'm not going to stand here and swear that you're innocent or whatever Rosie is doing. You did some bad stuff, but I want to know...did you have control over your actions or was it the professor's fault or something else weird, like when uh, Loki controls people through his staff in the first avengers movie?"

FACILIS DESCENSUS AVERNI.
Eris Fawley:
Strength: 6 //Agility: 10 //Control: 9 //Stamina: 10

If You Must  PV Eris 

Ben noticed that the coast was clear to head into the Library. No one he knew or needed to avoid seemed to be inside on first glance. He was about to take a step inside when he felt a tug from a little thing at his sleeve. The boy's lips curled into a frown as he turned to look at the girl attempting to get his attention. There was no malice in his eyes at that moment as he looked downwards to Eris. Ben patiently allowed her to speak despite the annoying topic at hand. It was impossible to forget what he had done to her and the boy that was with her. That was one of the more clear Mask events and one of the biggest fights he had.

Most of what she said registered, but his mind flashed back to that night while he was listening. He recalled the dark corridor and seeing the girl plotting to ambush the mask. This time she would be the one ambushed. Had it not been for Dorian swooping in to help, she'd likely be dead. Ben's blood began to boil a bit as the Mask side of him began to whisper of its hatred. It was long gone but its soul lived within the young Ravenclaw boy still. The more his blood boiled, the stronger the whispers became. In turn, the voices drove him to more and more anger. Ben usually drove but the Mask had a firm grip on his anger. When anger was in control, so was the Mask.

"You..." His voice was quiet, but not filled with anger quite yet. "You shouldn't approach people who threaten to kill you."

It was a struggle for the wheel, per say. Ben knew it was not him, but the Mask had blended so well with him that it was hard to deny its wishes as well. She was more dangerous to be around than Bloom or Serena any day. She was someone the Mask hated. That meant she was someone that Ben hated. He wasn't strong enough to fully separate them or to make the right decisions. Ben was a muggle born twelve year old boy with no clue what he was doing.

"This isn't a movie!" Suddenly Ben was basically shouting, causing a few heads to turn as they passed by. "Bad things can happen, if you turn to dust no one will save you. I won't hurt you if you stay away but..."

As Ben trailed off he could feel the anger taking over. It was no use fighting it. The Mask may as well have been plastered to his face once more. Luckily, the Mask side was still influenced by the Ben side. He would not be quite as bad nor would he be getting some magical power boost. He was just an angry boy with good reason. Ben's voice changed slightly when he spoke again.

"But you couldn't leave me alone." He was cold now, his eyes squinting and his nose scrunched up. "Where's your savior? You came here alone or is he hiding behind a statue somewhere? Maybe he abandoned you after you nearly got him killed. No wonder you came alone. You should have died that night in the hallway. Then at least you'd be remembered and people would have cared about you."

Venom flowed through his veins as he ranted to the girl. It was like he had all this anger locked up for too long. The gates were open, the Mask firmly gripped the controls, and Ben was content to let it stay that way for now. No one was getting hurt, not physically... yet. There was an entire group dedicated to trying to help him but he didn't want it. He didn't deserve it either. Dominum could handle himself.

"Leave me alone, girl." Dominum spit out at Eris, staring her down and waiting for her to go.

If You Must  PV Eris 

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What is dead may never die.
Her eyes widened, facial expression lingering between a snarl and a terrified look, as the child squared her shoulders and braved the quiet danger of Ben’s voice, head held high as the telltale signs of panic flashed over her body, when the poor girl began to shake weakly and adamantly, still keeping her head held high and her eyes flashing with the malice that had been pent up for so long, hollowing at the fragile shell of bravery that slowly turned to vengeance and anger, rebuilding with the faint silence.

“No, but you shouldn’t threaten to kill people.” Her voice was not equally quiet, rather loud enough to bounce off the walls and ring through her ears, and his. The look in her eyes, having been changed by fear turned to one of stubbornness.

Fear gone, Eris nearly scowled at Ben, waiting for his response to her clever reference to an older movie. She felt the fury of her favorite comic book characters course through her, and Eris was motivated. Now, if only she could find a shield to chuck at him.When his reply came back, the girl resisted the urge to shrink down and hide from the yelling that suddenly caused heads to turn and caused her own body to shake, despite her protests.

She was past being angry or being scared. No, she was angry enough that Eris’s body acted out of its own free accord. Her words ripped out of her mouth, as if controlled by a phantom force. There was no rhyme or reason, not with the shaking of her body and the red overpowering her vision in flickers of red and orange flames, covering everything up.

“Hurt me?” Her voice was choked, a bitter laugh away from spitting on him. “YOU need saving. I don’t. Why’d you hurt me? Why’d you hurt anyone? Hogwarts is safe and protective, and you ruined that. I can’t stay away, because I can’t sleep and I can hardly walk around knowing that someone is living and walking through my friends, trying to hurt them. I need to know, Ben, are you really evil or is something--someone--using you?”

His next words stripped away everything Eris was, dimming the shade of vibrant hair to a blue and Her friends wouldn’t care if she was dust. He was right. She had no friends who cared, having nobody who would kiss away the burns and cuts and make it all better. There was nobody to cling at her hand, to be her best friends. Adam was always far away, siding with Rosie’s crazy notions about Ben. Max..where was Max? His lack of presence burned away at the festering hole in Eris’s heart, blackening and charring at the drudges of her sadness. Who needed friends when you had magic and quidditch? Less people to remember her meant less people to be affected if Ben killed her, or less people to testify against her if she ended up destroying Ben first.

She was sure he was evil now. There wasn’t a thing he could do to disprove it, besides for actually talking to her and not being defensive. Eris almost liked and admired Ben for his balls, even after being caught, but her distaste for the boy who had hurt herself and her friends outnumbered that small notion by far.

Her eyes burned, shaking with the effort not to shed any tears and show any weakness. “I’m not dead though. I should have died, but I’m not dead and I won’t die. My friends aren’t here because I don’t want to hurt anyone who doesn’t deserve it because I’m not a bad guy. You are, and you’ll pay for that.”

She glowered back up at him, “No.” She would not leave. “I’m begging you, you have this one chance to make it right. What really happened and why haven’t you been kicked out?”

FACILIS DESCENSUS AVERNI.
Eris Fawley:
Strength: 6 //Agility: 10 //Control: 9 //Stamina: 10

If You Must  PV Eris 

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Ben watched silently as Eris ranted at him. His arms folded up in front of him as he watched her unravel in front of him. The boy remained neutral in his expression once he was done speaking and gave nothing away until she was totally done with her bit. He stood a decent bit taller than her which likely made her a lot less intimidating for him. Finally she spit out her defiance and begged for answer. He could not help but smile a little at that one.

"Everyone, besides you apparently, knows that it was a mask doing it," he spat back with a frustrated tone. "What is there to make right?"

It actually surprised Ben that the mask was not more violent when in charge. He had almost expected himself to attack Eris but it was just an angry, sad version of himself. Ben didn't have the urge to kill her so much as yell at her for being an idiot. Maybe the mask wasn't all bad like he thought. He had fought so hard under its control that he expected... worse. The real mask was long gone and all that was left was a scarred and scared Ben. This angry being was just the leftovers of a mask.

"If you want to get revenge, or be some hero, you're as stupid as the mast.. as the mask thought." A scowl followed and his face twitched slightly while holding it. "You should not fear me, you should fear the fact that the mask is still out there. Your friends could be your enemy. Your professors could even be under control. But you have to come focus on me because you're too dumb."

Ben shook his head slowly looking down at the girl. He felt the venom releasing its grip and now it was the real him once more. Real Ben was still upset with Eris though. The mask had a point even if it was nasty in how it gave the message. Dominum was a jerk but he could see the truth. When Ben spoke his tone changed to be somewhat kinder, but he was still yelling at the girl.

"You think you have any right to be afraid of me? I am the one that escaped from the mask's grip! I am the loose end it should close. I am the face everyone hates and I am the face the mask wants to burn!" He was practically screaming at Eris now. "The Professors are not worried about me because they know I am not the threat. If you keep harassing me maybe I'll become one for you! Back off and worry about something more important, you stupid little gnome!"

The last bit was a bit far for Ben himself, but he was frustrated with her. Normally he'd never explode like this but she had pushed his buttons, brought out the mask side, and he was still coming out of it. Eris was lucky that this first real appearance of Dominum was non violent. Ben still did not trust that side of himself to stay peaceful though. The mask might even return to him if he wasn't careful. Who even knew where it was now.... or who could be hunting Ben with it.

"Just... leave me be." His tone softened considerably and his face turned to more of a frown than a scowl. "Please."

If You Must  PV Eris 

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His equally frustrated and stubborn words, lashing out at Eris, only made the small child’s hands curl into fists. Rapidly growing more and more angry, Eris inhaled a sharp breath of air, trying to let the motion calm down the icy rage that was mounting by the moment. His smile was not comforting, but the words were near soothing. Eris’s hair burst into shades of bright angry orange, the color of the flames that had burnt at trees and hufflepuffs alike. Flickering between shades of red, orange, and yellow, her hair looked like a fire and she refused to

She shouldn’t feel scared of the boy in front of her. Almost at once, Eris relaxed, shoulders slumping. He was just a wrecked little kid, the same as her or anyone else in the halls of Hogwarts after the danger and pain of last year’s struggles. It made a lot more sense that the creepy mask was the thing possessing him, but Eris had wanted to make sure. She didn’t fully trust the magical world, not anymore, but some small part of her had hoped vainly that the mask had just been a futile attempt at looking classy while going around and attempting to murder classmates.

“Okay, okay, I get it. I’m stupid.” Her voice had less venom than his, as Eris rubbed her hands at her forehead, aware of the massive pain in the head she was starting to get from the conversation at hand. Migraines weren’t exactly common for Eris, but she got them in moments of extreme stress. Right now, there was an insistent throbbing at the tips of her forehead, spreading and fading.There was so much more to think about and go over, and the girl was so tired of the feelings flying through her head. Eris had prayed for answers to an unspoken question during their conversation, some way to see if he was lying or not, but she had found a broken boy with a moral code that was flexible at best and destroyed at worst. It fascinated her, and made Eris feel less afraid--but not any less worried or quizzical.

Confused, her foot tapped against the floor with a reckless sort of abandonment, as her lips drew together into a pursed lipped inquisitive expression, having to study the expressions upon his face, watching his anger and the way it drew the lines of the boy’s face and made him look older and more angry than anyone 12 years old should feel. His words fell flat, as Eris’s expression turned to one of sour sadness, unmasked and unadulterated. She had good marks! She knew some things and wasn’t all that dumb. Blinking, Eris curled and uncurled her fisted hands at her sides, focusing on the sharp pattern of breathing emerging from her body.

She didn't feel like a hero in the moment. Rather, she felt angry like a villain or ignored like a commoner in a kingdom story. Unable to control the hashed breathing and the tears that were tugging at the corners of her eyes, Eris stared violently up at the lights on the ceiling, willing her face to hide the tears and regain the composure her pure blooded family had begged her to have at all times.

Luckily, all the training over the summer had some sort of impact on the stubborn mess of fire and rage. She managed to stop the tears from falling at her face, and managed to carefully brush away any residue of tears, before turning back to Ben with a smirk plastered on the alabaster lines of her thin and drawn face. Too thin and drawn for a child, really, but who was to notice? There was nobody around to watch and make sure Eris was safe, but the thoughts of absent parental figures managed to help the girl calm down, when they should have just fueled her incessant rage and abandonment issues.

When finally composed, the child crossed her arms, hands still balled up into fists. Rapidly reddening knuckles started to hurt, as Eris stayed silent for a moment. She was lost for words, really. There was no way to say anything to defend herself, but the stubborn nature of Eris kept her from giving up completely and running away with her tail between her legs. “If it’s still out there, everyone could be a target and you’re the only living person who knows the most about the mask and who it might target next.” She might have been dumb, but Eris still was an avid fan of comic books. This was just the impasse, before the heroitics started and the ending of the story came close.

She would have to be strong, even if she wanted to listen to Ben calling her dumb and wanted to curl up in a ball and wait for the mask to kill her. She fought the impulse, realizing that Ben had finished speaking. She felt bad for him, as his words finished, even though she had been called a gnome.

Looking down at her tiny body, the little girl made a face by wrinkling her nose and flexing her fingers again. He was broken and healing, just like her. He was hurt, recovering, scared, and a target to be burnt. It was enough to soothe the fire burning away at the hollow shell of emptiness threatening to drown Eris beneath the waves of anger and oblivion that had lead her to do so many horrible things.

He wanted her to leave him alone? Nobody deserved to be alone, not when they were in pain with some sort of emotional turmoil. Eris still wanted to punch his face in, but she found a soft spot for the broken boy in front of her. Masked or not masked, it excited her to have a friend, or ever think about having a friend. Ben might not be that friend, but the idea of having someone care about her warmed Eris’s heart. Ben didn’t seem to care, but maybe he needed someone to care about him.

It was a long shot, especially for such a small girl. “No. I don’t think you deserve to be alone, and you don’t deserve to be a target for the mask. But since we’re both targets to get our faces burned, maybe we could ally together? Just to make sure..we’re safe...I guess?” And just like that, Eris Fawley trusted Ben.

FACILIS DESCENSUS AVERNI.
Eris Fawley:
Strength: 6 //Agility: 10 //Control: 9 //Stamina: 10