Care of Magical Creatures

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I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

The sun was not too high in the sky, as it sometimes was, and a light, fluffy layer of clouds partially obscured the blue in the sky, turning it a sort of silver-azure - perfectly the temperature of Cy’s preference, not too cold and not too hot. The stack of homework at her desk was graded, nobody had wanted to enter her classroom… in short, she had no excuse to stay- inside and avoid the advice that Aoi had been giving her for the past… decade or so.

And so she had ventured out of the castle, cane sweeping out in front of her in careful semicircles, nearly walking straight into a tree but thankfully being saved by a student. The sun was warm on her pale skin, and as she walked the Grounds, she imagined what might be in front of her - the Great Lake, like a rippling mirror, disturbed by shadows of the Giant Squid. Students lounging on the grass… the grass beneath her feet, familiar and welcoming.

After wandering past the seven greenhouses, Cy found herself near the Stables, as directed by a nice Fourth Year. She hadn’t quite forgotten about the slight toward her sister that the Care of Magical Creatures professor had expressed and that she’d responded to, but Cypresse was not someone who held grudges. He seemed an interesting man, to say the least, and not many people appeared interesting to her - few of the other professors had caught her eye. Her visit would have no purpose other than to scout out an apparent colleague.

That Fourth Year had took one look - or so she assumed - at the dark mauve scarf, patterned with tiny white flowers, that she wore, and recognized her confusion, offering to help. They needed more people like this in the world, that could help alleviate her cynicism for a few seconds. Besides, she would probably have ended up completely muddled by now without students’ help, not just this one young Fourth Year whose name she had failed to procure. She probably taught him in some class. She also didn’t care all that much.

The young woman hadn’t met with many of the other staff for much time, save for Aoi, other than brief exchanges in passing, especially teachers of electives, although she knew the basics from the meeting in the Kitchens. No, many of her days had been spent in the peace of her office, unlit, grading homework or otherwise passing time, either by playing her guzheng, or if her sister was free, chatting with Aoi. Come to think of it, she’d stayed inside the castle for over a week now. Perhaps Kimi was right to be concerned… or maybe not.

As per the Fourth Year’s instruction, when Cypresse reached out, she found fiber brushing her hand - the rope, as he’d described it, a black one. Out of simple curiosity, she tipped the wand from her sleeve, grass rustling beneath her feet as she took a step backwards, then traced her wand across the air gracefully. “Legere,” she murmured, and the voice of Morgan Freeman began to speak, too quietly for anyone standing further from the text than Cy to decipher.

Pull cord for professor Griffith. If no one answers, I either am currently occupied with something, am not here or don't want to talk to you. In any of these cases remember. You don't have to go home, but I don't want you here.

“How friendly,” she remarked, her voice laced with sarcasm, to no one at all as the Muggle narrator’s voice faded into silence. The young professor could understand his alleged animosity, but she hadn’t seen much else of him, either around the school or in the Kitchens. Instead of stopping in the familiar grass to ponder the matter, though, Cy grasped at the air before her until the back of her hand came into contact with the slip of black ribbon glued to the entrance - yes, she was thankful for that Fourth Year; otherwise, she didn’t know what she would have done in confusion.

With little - nothing - else to do, Cy closed her fist around the putative cord and pulled firmly. Then she released it, stepped back, rested her weight on her heels, and crossed her arms loosely, waiting.


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

The door rang. Again. It was getting to be an almost daily occurrence at this point, and he could only assume the reason had something to do with a bunch of students spreading the word that he didn't, in fact, eat people. The candy in his pocket probably wasn't helping his self image, if he was being perfectly honest with himself. But he wasn't just going to stop carrying it around. A lot of students benefited from the help he gave them. He had only turned away a few, and only when they didn't actually need any help from him.

When he slid open the door, he saw a sight that made him sigh internally. A professor, the blind girl that taught transfiguration. She was the friend of the authentic weeaboo that was running around trying to teach children in between styling her newest outfit. Still, he wasn't going to just go ahead and judge this professor based on the actions of her sister, or mother, or whoever the other professor was to this one.

That didn't mean he was going to be nice. He was determined to not befriend any of the other faculty, to remain distanced from them entirely. He was not foolish enough to think that he didn't need any help, was not ignorant to presume that he was better off alone. He couldn't do anything, didn't know everything. But he sure didn't need connections, didn't need friends. If he was going to get help, it was going to be taken from begrudging colleagues with liberal use of the word "duty" and "contract"

He had reasons, sure. A lot of them. And those reasons did extend to students as well, although he had been utterly failing at keeping himself from caring about some of the students. He knew he was failing, and could live with that. But that wasn't going to happen with this professor. He was going to make it clear he was a jerk and not worth the time, and be on his way.

"Oh, I'm sorry. Didn't see you there, you can probably relate. Were you going to show me how well you can turn around and walk back to your classroom, or did you need something."

A rude, insensitive remark. He didn't mean most of it, but it had to be done. It was easy, not a problem. This was going to take twenty minutes at the absolute most. He had leaned out the door, one hand in his pocket, as he usually did, long brown hair and huge brown leather coat standing well above the little professor in front of him.

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."

I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

The quiet creak, for the sake of no other words suitable for the sound's description, sounding before her alerted Cy to an answer, prompting her to shift her arms, silken fabric rippling with the motion, in a contemplation of uncrossing them. A few thoughts ended with the conclusion of keeping them dovetailed, although loosely. They were briefly uncrossed for the purpose of tossing her cane into the air and catching it shrunken, then pocketing the magically compressed stub in her jacket pocket, and then her arms were interwoven again, a more comfortable pose.

She'd expected irritation from the man, and it wasn't surprising that the first thing he said to her was an insult. The underlying message of go away, even if it hadn't been outright stated, was clear in his tone. Unfortunately for him, and fortunately for her, she wasn't the type that cared. Cy came here to explore; she wasn't about to leave at a couple of words that might have come out of her own mouth had their positions been switched.

Hey, he hadn't even slammed the door! At this point, she wouldn't really blame him if he did. She quite a vexing person, apparently by nature, and hadn't been the most pleasant during their last meeting. Was she ever really pleasant? Perhaps, if she had a good reason to be. Most likely not.

The young woman fished the cane from her pocket, now only three inches long, and shook it once to extend it three inches more. She jabbed it forward, poking the professor in what she expected was the belly and not the eye - hey, you never know - albeit gently. No more than a tap, really, but enough to make her point. "Sorry, I was aiming for your nose. You're really so talented in acting, more specifically like a child that I assumed you were a Third Year overcompensating for the T you probably would've gotten with a voice changing spell. Being blind is such a hassle, you know." Throughout the slight, her voice remained polite, and her smile remained playful, making clear no ill intention. But it was a chance - and how could she miss a chance at sass?

Some people told her that her sass was a bad thing, such as her parents, estranged as they were. When she was younger, she actually cared. Now, not so much. The only mother whose authority she accepted was Eva Wood, and perhaps she heeded her sister even more. Besides, she didn't think she would tick off this professor as much as she could some other people - the annoying usually were not so crocodilian as the righteous.


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

He gave a large, internal sigh. Right, he had forgotten. This girl just sniped back, either to mask the blow his insult had dealt, or because she didn't care at all and wanted to have a fun exchange. If it was the latter, he was just going to up his game. There was a rule about insults. Some people even bragged about it. Walking into a room, bragging about how anyone could say anything they wanted about them, but if anyone insulted their mother, nothing in the world would contain their wrath, or something stupid like that.

"No, it's okay. I'd imagine someone as useless as you would need to feel at least a little powerful now and again. If my stature is intimidating you, feel free to continue pretending you don't know where my face is. But I could be wrong. This could just be you trying to feel if I've got any muscles. If you are, then ew, no. Go away."

A little bit of weirdness would help, anyway. Put her off her guard enough for the next insult to actually hit home. Or at least he hoped that it was going to work that way. He didn't react to the prod, and kept his tone of voice neutral. This was going fine, he'd have her gone before too long. She looked young, very young. Young enough to still have mommy issues. Honestly, almost everyone had mommy or daddy issues. He didn't really know her history, and didn't care. But she was probably edgy enough for it to work.

"Look, if you're here because mother never loved you and you just realized that the only person who even remotely cares is that absolute hag of a History of Magic Professor, then I don't care. I'm doing you a favor by making that pretty clear now. Do you need help finding your way back? Is that it?"

He had crossed several lines with that, or at least he hoped he did. No friends, no connections. No bindings. He couldn't afford any, he didn't want any. This girl was going to fall in verbal combat, one way or another. To make matters worse, she was more of a little kid than she was an adult, but not in a bad way. The grin, almost smirk on her face made it clear that she wasn't trying to be mean, only poke fun. Which was the opposite objective that the welshman had in mind. He was going to gravely insult her, she was going to hate him, then leave, and never even consider coming to him again.

If he got lucky, she'd get so mad she would think he wasn't worth the time of day and just not bother in the future. But he doubted he actually was that lucky.

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."

I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

Cypresse arched a mental brow, though her physical facial expression stayed constant, as she tossed the stick into the air again, properly shrinking it before popping it back into Cy's jacket pocket. The hand carrying the stub stayed in the pocket, and the other entered the pocket on her other side, allowing her to shift her weight onto one foot.

The first return that this Professor Griffith had offered was not the strongest that she'd seen, surprising her slightly, but not so much that she cared to make a point of it. A battle of verbal wit valued the deflection of assail, but doing so without drawing enough details from the original insult - that was looked down upon. And actually, she didn't absolutely know where his face was, just its general direction - somewhere above her head, of course - but Cy was fairly certain that his face was not located at her shoulder height.

Regardless, she could laugh at his last jab. Ew, no about summed up her own views toward it, too - that was weird. The last sentence, though, go away, was one that was probably more sincere than the rest. Sadly, Cy was quite the bothersome person - known to be quite vexing.

Then he spoke his next insult, and the young woman caught on, this time actually raising a brow. He was trying to irritate her into going away - that she understood, even before now, simply did not acknowledge. It was a known fact that insulting the parent was the lowest insult that one could deliver, likely something about the origin of the person him or herself or family or some other detail unworthy of her attention. But if anyone called Cy impatient at any time, which was probably everyone at any given time, she could say that all of her patience went into these - the verbal battles of sarcasm and sass that she was so often denied.

"I'm a disowned disgrace to my family name, apparently, and I couldn't care less, but I guess she loved me more than yours loved you, if this-" she gestured in his general direction "-is what became of her care. The woman I call mother these days, on the other hand, is quite a different person." A decade was a long time to get over the event, however traumatic it might have been. She could still remember the harsh words that her parents wrote to her, the train station through the blur of her tears, even contemplated changing her name to shut her parents out, but instead, Cy had claimed it for her own. Again - no grudges. If she wanted someone out of her life, they would be shut out and forgotten about, not fed with simmering anger as others tended to act.

The smile on her face might not have been as playful as it had been before, but another remained in its place, perhaps even more sincerely than the last. This time it was tinged with sorrow but alight with wisdom - perhaps making her look more her age, or more than that, even. Nonetheless, it was not a bit less present, still lighthearted, for lack of better words.

"I am, in fact, here because I heard that you have stories, and I haven't read a book in ages. If you wanted to be isolated, then tough luck, because word is spreading. Although I realize now that I have no chance of getting back to the castle without help at this point," she appended as an afterthought, the fact a true epiphany. "How about a trade - I'll leave you alone and stop being the annoying child I am in exchange for some storytelling?"


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

It had affected her, she was not invulnerable. He had never presumed to think she was, but this was a bit of a reassurance. The innocent smile of a little girl was gone. Sure, her smile was still jovial, but it was different. More grounded. So he had taken her out of skies, just by a little bit. Her response also answered a lot of questions. The weeb professor was her surrogate mother, because her real mother had distanced herself emotionally, and perhaps physically as well. A sore spot, then, and a rough past. And yet she still smiled.

His heart almost went out to her, borne of a respect given to those who have suffered and yet managed to put a genuine smile on their faces. But his brain quickly set to work chopping to pieces his brief moment of respect with the fact that he could not afford to make connections with professors. Especially ones that looked as high spirited as this girl did. he didn't want to end up in a situation he wouldn't be able to get out of. More weights chaining him down was not going to do his continued survival any favors.

It was then that the professor finished her request. She had come to him in search of a story? What kind of moronic reason was that? His hand tightened to slam the door in her face, but he didn't. He instead started to remember days long, long past. A little boy screaming, clawing at the carpet, two parents at their wits end, a mother's eyes stained red from the constant crying. And old man with a small, ratty old book.

He was about to dive deeper into the depths of memory that was starting to surge to the surface, but stopped. There were mental exercises for this. It didn't take the professor any longer than a second to subdue his memory, and emotions. Occlumensy truly was a marvelous thing. Griffith took a long, deep sigh.

"In case you couldn't catch that, I just sighed in exasperation because I want you gone, have been dropping hints that a drunk irishman would think were too blatant, and have generally been making it clear I would appreciate some mutual dislike. But, for the sake of getting you gone, I'll tell you a good one."

"I'll tell you a story about jackalorie, and now my storie's begun. I'll tell you another about his older brother and now my story is done.

There we go, that wasn't so hard. If you want a better story you can ask your mother for a grand retelling of naruto's close bond with the emo kid. Now, I'm aware you probably already are, but get lost. Trying to come up with clever ways of making it clear how much I dislike you is getting tedious."

She was almost gone. She could get away from him and the insults she didn't deserve, and go back to her classroom to cast a text to speech spell a couple hundred times. He could not afford to be nice, it couldn't happen, it wouldn't happen. It was happening with students more than it should already. The welshman closed his eyes, and focused on extinguishing the little voice of conscious. She would forget about him within a few days, and life would be back to how it should be. The professors getting along in the castle, and not coming to see him in the stables.

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."

I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

Such effort put into driving away one person! If she had a door and she really wanted someone gone, Cy would just slam it. Of course, banter was a much more enjoyable way of ridding herself of company - the same views might not have been shared by this Professor Griffith. In a truly immature mindset, she was bored, she had not yet been fully denied, and she still had a chance of getting what she wanted.

The young woman laughed lightly, tossing her wand into the air, then catching it again. Her weight shifted to the other foot, relieving the first of the lactic acid slowly building up - the problems of a high arch. Quite the misunderstanding, but then, she'd never identified Evangeline Wood specifically. It was understandable. "Aoi's not my mother, she's my sister; I don't know how you made that connection, but I guess I should congratulate you for the accomplishment. I, too, have been dropping hints - that I'm a stubborn brat and that I won't go away until I either get what I want or you deny me any chance of getting it, which, frankly, is difficult to do, seeing as we share a workplace, if you hadn't noticed that either.

"Honestly, you're trying so hard to anger me that it defeats the purpose. Insulting my mother isn't working, at least not significantly. Insulting my eyes isn't working either. Find a new angle, perhaps? How unfortunate it is for you that I'm not a drunk Irishman; you would've had an easier time making me..." She waved her wand into the distance, a puff of grey smoke resembling clouds flung out from it, gradually dispersing into the air. "...storm off into the sunset, or whatever it is that Irishmen do. You, on the other hand, are much easier to irritate." Honestly, she couldn't blame him. Few had enough patience to not raise their voice in genuine anger before the end of a conversation with her.

If he'd given up on being subtle, perhaps mirroring that would work to her advantage, either to make him relent or to get a door slammed in her face. Unfortunately, she expected the latter, but she wasn't about to back out. Walking away from verbal battles was as good as suicide; maybe that was why he still hadn't closed the door, to avoid admitting defeat. Or maybe he thought he had a chance at making her mad first.  Bluntness tended to communicate that message.

There were two types of snark: the type that Cypresse engaged in, banter, although sometimes not as friendly, and the type that Morfran was demonstrating, dubbed by Cy as the go away. The latter had occasionally arisen in her when on one too many cups of coffee, but it was characterized by bluntness - that didn't limit bluntness to the category, but bringing it into the conversation tended to blow in a more serious breeze.

No longer tossing and catching the chestnut wood, Cy spun her wand in her fingers, allowing it to come to rest pointing opposite herself - pointing straight at Morfran himself, this time tilted upwards slightly to angle towards his face. Or at least where his voice had come from, which usually tended to the face; again, you never know. Her last phrase might burn up his respectable patience, however bad-mooded it was - that she knew, but Cy wouldn't desist: "Are you quite certain that I'm the blind one?"


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

She talked a lot, but everything she was saying meant the same thing. She was going to stay, and there was precious little he could do to stop that. It annoyed him, a lot. He didn’t like driving people away, it wasn’t who he was. But it was necessary, and he was passably decent at it. Except it seemed to him that this girl was also good at the same skill. Which made her especially resistant, which made him especially frustrated. Or maybe frustrated wasn’t the right word. It was more of a resigned feeling that came with knowing that you weren’t going to be able to win at something, no matter how hard you tried. The feeling that came with knowing that you were not going to be able to fell a giant with a stone. The realization that you needed a catapult but didn’t know how to use one.

That was okay, he still had a plan. It wasn’t much of a plan, but it worked in a lot of the movies he had watched. And if it managed to kill off a lot of king arthur’s knights, then maybe it would deter this girl. She finished with a quip about how he could be the blind one between the two. But he knew a bit better than that. She was coming to satisfy boredom, he was keeping her away because it was the right thing to do, given the circumstances. She couldn’t see that, he could, and if that said nothing about who was blind, then he’d have to give back his padawan certificate.

“Fine, you know what? I’m not going to be able to get rid of you easily, so how about a deal? A riddle. You answer right, I give you an actual story. You answer wrong, you go on back to whatever kindergarten you escaped from. Because you don’t really have an choice, I’m just going to go ahead and give you the riddle.”

The riddle was one of his favorites. Unconventional, with a lot of inspiration drawn from one of his favorite muggle authors. It would work doubly well on cy. He was more than a little curious as to how the other professor was going to react. He was also just a little proud of himself for not adding a “filthy hobbitses” somewhere in there, even though he had been sorely tempted to, it would have been lost on her.

“How many fingers am I holding right now?”

And then he waited. This could only go a few different directions, and he was hoping that she would get it wrong, then leave. Nice and easy, no complications. At least, no complications aside from the ones that had already happened. He was hoping for damage control at this point. Prevention had gone out the window a while ago.

He then carefully extended one finger into the air.

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."

I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

Riddles! Riddles were good. She’d spent seven years answering riddles as her only way to a nice room to sleep in; most of the Ravenclaws had memorized every answer to the questions tossed at them by the end of the year. Cy’s memory, being more or less average, had let her down at particularly bad times, so she’d learned to worm her way into an answer, whether or not she was sure of one or not.

Why, just last week she’d answered a riddle she’d heard a thousand times from the Mad Hatter with a certain: “All right, listen here, Lewis Carroll. I’ve been here eight years too long, graded too many bad papers for tonight, and you left me out here pondering the existentialism in my Second Year far too many times. Ravens are like writing desks because neither should be shoved up your arse. Don’t test me. Now open that door, or so help me I am going to melt you right out of the handle.

Ah, those were good times.

Regardless, the door had opened without another word, though she could’ve sworn that the knocked muttered something akin to “sassy as the day you got here” after her. She hadn’t bothered to admonish the knocker that year; truthfully, she didn’t care all that much. While her peers answered the riddles with the vaguest, most senseless answers answers possible, Cy offered the latest gossip available to the question “what is truth.” Other times, she would bring out a fleece blanket and chatter nonstop on the evolution of the phoenix and details on the reptile eggs when asked if the egg or the bird came first, generally annoying the door knocker until it let her in, whether it was because it was sick of her voice or because she actually had a good line of reasoning. Most of the time, she could give just as vague an answer as everyone else, but why do that when there was so much more fun to be had?

The point was, she could handle riddles just fine… that is, until the question was asked.

Was that a riddle? Did that count as a riddle? What exactly was the definition of a riddle? Well, Mofran had dictated that it was a riddle, therefore it would be a riddle - her mind settled on that decision of belief. Now, to think. Obviously he’d tried to make use of her blindness; apparently he didn’t know the details of blindsight. But it couldn’t be so easy as that, could it? She couldn’t risk falling into a potential trap, even if it hadn’t yet been laid. She couldn’t help but let a grin stretch across her face from its neutral expression that it had returned to briefly before - it really was quite clever; she could appreciate it.

Honestly, she was surprised the old man still had the patience to deal with her talk. If she was in that bad of a mood, if she was really that tired, she’d probably say something sharper and slam the door before her opponent had a chance to reply. Actually, she’d done so on several occasions - even to people who didn’t deserve it. Definitely people less annoying than herself. Was she taking too much credit for how annoying she could be? Was there a word for that? Eh, who cared?

“Well,” Cy sighed, exaggerating the slump of her shoulders, executing the smooth art of pretending to examine her own fingernails, “that really depends, you know? You said how many fingers are you holding, not how many fingers are you holding up. So it really depends on the details. What does it mean to be holding fingers? And do you refer to one hand or both hands? And what do you define a finger as? If you define holding as things touching your palm, well, you will receive a different answer.” All right, she was pushing the boundaries a little, but why not, anyway. Plato's way of thinking could technically be used in any riddle. However, it was valid, so as a little voice in her mind warned her of limits, Cy told the voice to shut it. “You see, definition is really very tricky, and if I don’t have all the information, then the riddle is unsolvable.

“However, if someone not as inherently annoying as I am were to try answering that riddle, they’d probably assume a few things. They’d assume that you mean one hand at the end of an arm hopefully but not necessarily with five fingers that is currently held up, curled into a fist, with one to five fingers unfolded from that fist, and that the question asks for the number of fingers unfolded. I’ll take some liberties here and assume what that person would assume.

“So assuming all of that…” The young woman tilted her head, still grinning, and moved her hands to the knot resting against the back of her head as she spoke, twisting it loose. The silken scarf slipped into her left hand like mercury, smooth and fluid, and Cy blinked her eyes, uncannily training them toward where his voice had last come from. She twisted the scarf in her hands, fidgeting a little, probably about to earn chastisement from Eva for creasing it too much. Blindsight was quite useful, wasn’t it? She’d never quite used it in such a situation; she herself wasn’t certain if it would work, but based on various studies, it should.

The beam turned into a laugh. “If I didn’t know better, I’d think you were flipping me off right now.” With no warning at all, Cy reached out and grabbed where she thought the hand might be, missing by a few centimeters but quickly correcting her mistake. “Well, I still can’t tell if you have. But if the answer you want is assuming everything that I detailed before, then one finger. If not, then I'd give you my first answer. Maybe I’m just a naive, barely-adult who doesn’t, in fact, know better, though. Who can say?”


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

She was being cautious. Which meant she was worried. Even if it was just a little bit, even if it was just a subconscious thing, she wanted to make sure she was getting this right. But she hadn't exactly done a very good job of answering. In her attempts to make sure she didn't leave any loopholes, she made a huge loophole, just for him. It was too big to not take, and he was going to take advantage of it. Besides, even though he didn't really get much pleasure out of being harsh, it wasn't like a lot of people out there didn't deserve harsh words now and again.

"You gave two answers, depending on eventualities that you're unsure of. Aren't you supposed to be a ravenclaw, and figure out the riddle? You can't give me two answers. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that giving me several answers means that you don't know what the answer is, which means that you have lost this challenge, and that means no story. Why do you even think I have stories, anyway? My life's been pretty boring. I more or less just couch surfed until I bummed this job. I could care less."

New plan, then. Act like someone despicable. What was worse than a couch surfing jerk with no aspirations who used to word bum to describe getting something? She looked like someone who might think less of him for that, and if he couldn't get her to hate him maybe he could get her to look down on him enough so that she no longer cared. So that she thought he was beneath her. It was something, anyway.

"Now, if you don't mind. You got the riddle wrong, and I would appreciate it if you accepted defeat graciously and got out of here. Nowish, if you could."

One hand reached for the door, with the intent to close it, but he didn't want to slam the door. That would probably just make her curious, or determined. She seemed like the stubborn type. Which is why disappointing her was the wisest course of action he knew of, outside of insults, which was clearly not going to have any noticeable effect. She had managed to grab his index finger, however, and that deserved to at least be addressed a little bit.

"Right, and as lonely as I'm sure you are, you missed my hand. Also ew don't, please let go on your way back to the castle."

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."

I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

The correct term for what Cypresse was feeling would be politically miffed.

There was honestly so much wrong with what the old man had just concluded that her very much Ravenclaw mind wanted to crawl out of her skull and scream every fallacy that had just been made in his face. However, considering that that mind was just as blind as she was and would likely end up vituperating its frustrations to a fallen leaf somewhere on the ground, the castigation found its way out of her tongue instead.

"You know what..." She paused, taking the time to languidly sweep her hand through the air and in front of her face, putting up a good show of examining her chipped, too-long nails. Which... she was literally unable to do, short of knowing that they weren't about to poke her in  the face. "You know what a Ravenclaw actually does? A Ravenclaw doesn't just get the answer to the question. A Ravenclaw will go through the thought process, every consideration, and ponder the limits of a question. It makes sense that you're not a Raven, actually: only the truly intelligent will really value a riddle for the actual point of one. Whether or not the response I gave you is one that you expected, I did answer the riddle, and based on your reaction, I answered it right. You asked be to solve the riddle, not say what you wanted. Those are different things.

"And further, I'll let you in on a little secret - the Ravenclaw Door Knocker - you do know where that is, right? - lets Ravenclaws in based on their mental process, not the given answer. We value wisdom, not just knowledge. If you just say something that someone else told you without thinking it through and understanding why, it actually won't open until you do understand. That way, you learn. I guess the 'wise old man' trope doesn't fit you, especially since they aren't supposed to be hypocrites - if you want to assume something, such as that I don't know the answer, then I should be allowed to assume things too.

"Now, onto the specific mechanics of the riddle itself. I don't know if you'll be able to understand a short girl barely out of her teens, but I'll try to explain without the crayons I'd usually use." Cy paused for a moment, taking a deep breath in stark contrast to the short ones she'd taken briefly so as to not interrupt her truckloads of slightly passive-aggressive explanation that she'd poured down. She did not intend to hear a response until she'd finished in whole. "Technically, if that's the level you want to argue on, you have to consider the meaning of every single word that you uttered to get a clear answer. For simplification purposes, we'll skip the Plato-ism of considering the definition of fingers and I. Let's move on to the word now, because you said right now. If you think about it, if you're able, now is never a time. It is all the time, because it is always now. Therefore, there are infinite answers possible."

"But if you assume now meant the exact moment in timespace when you finished uttering the word now, there's still the matter of the verb holding. There are, of course, a lot of definitions for hold, but a good generalization might be supporting with one's hands or arms. I believe we can agree that to support is to bear the mass of. But obviously, or at least obviously to me, your hand is on the end of your arm, meaning your arm is stopping it from falling to the ground, because, you know, gravity. If you chop off someone's hand, it'll fall to the ground, right? Or, if you chop off someone's finger, which is attached to someone's hand, it will also fall to the ground. That would be ten fingers on two hands, which is ten, unless you're referring to just one hands, in which case you have five.

"However, there are also other interpretations for this. You could also say zero, if you don't count that as supporting, or if you have a different definition of holding something. You see? It really does depend. You could argue for any answer being correct, including an answer that says that there are no correct answers except that there are no correct answers, wow, try saying that five times fast, because you never really know the definition. People are what give words definition, and I hope you understood that, because I'm too lazy to go fetch a dictionary and find some three hundred words that I just said.

"If you want to argue that I still didn't answer the answer correctly, I'd first like to say that what you say is the correct answer doesn't make it the correct answer. Who said there can't be more than one answer to a riddle? You could say that one plus one equals three, but that won't make it true. So you see, I can't accept defeat if it never happened. And now my throat is dry." Cy shifted her weight back onto her heels as she felt for the silicone cap of the water flask at her hip and sipped as delicately as if the contents were tea, not bothering to replace it as she continued. She hadn't actually anticipated this much talking, but Aoi had drilled the concept of always come prepared into her head too many times to count - if not Aoi, then situations where she unwisely didn't listen to her sister.

"About your stories. As hard as it may be to imagine, and I sincerely know that it may be, I do teach classes, meaning I do talk to students. Meaning that man, the teacher gossip that happens around them probably exceeds the rumors spread about each other, except it's usually truer. Besides, everyone has stories, even if they're not as adventurous and whimsical as the ones my students have said. And please." She took another sip, waving her hand. "Indolent vegetables don't tell a two-sentence story to get rid of people. They don't offer riddles for a deal, nor do they find a way out of acknowledging an answer, or not slam the door on jejune children. And finally, they definitely don't work at Hogwarts. You know that, I know that, everyone knows that - Hogwarts has standards.

"And even if you were some kind of torpid lackadaisy, even you would have stories. Sure, they might not be as adventurous and whimsical as what the kids have said, but they'd be there, all right, and if I'm denied my Tumblr, there'll have to be stories elsewhere. Everyone has stories, whatever they've lived through or not lived through. A teenager's little sister did this. A woman's child did that. A stranger on the train was reading the same book. A couch potato had a childhood. There are stories everywhere, but I've heard more about yours, so I'm looking for yours. Even if you were a good-for-nothing jerk, which you aren't, you obviously got there somehow. Anyway - how much work is it really for you to just freaking talk about your life? I promise I'll go away if you give me a good story, one with none of the BS you've brought up."

She was sure she was toeing the limits now, but decided to see if anything would be offered in return or not. Really, why not give her a story? As far as he should be concerned, she was just another student - certainly young enough to be regarded as such with a little stretch of imagination. Was it really that much work? If he was in the middle of something important, why not just say that? But it was too late for any polite turning away after all of the banter that had taken place. Quite interesting, then, how this would turn out.


I Don't See The Point  PV Moffy 

Maybe he was onto something, he may actually have found the crack. Griffith would never describe himself as brilliant, or witty. He often, when staring at a wand that couldn't help him with what he knew he needed to get done, found himself quite stupid indeed. But he also routinely observed others as being even more stupid, and he supposed that made him at least marginally intelligent in comparison. People liked having conversation, and that's what this girl was getting. She was arguing back and forth and starting to use longer words and to get engaged.

Well, it was time to disengage. Time to switch off and offer nothing of interest. When an opponent likes to fight, you do not go up at arms, you ignore them and bide your time, and eventually they declare sour grapes and are never heard from again. She had made interesting points, and his brain had already found a retort for most of it by the time he realized that he couldn't respond. Not intelligently. If the battle could not be won with missiles and insults, then it could be won by being so utterly bland and useless that he was deemed not worth her mind.

"Oh, wow... yeah, I dunno what those words mean, but I'll take your word for it, you sound smart and all. I mean, so this one time, yeah? I was drunk out of my mind and chillaxin' with the homies in this parking lot when no joke this old grannie comes out of her car. She was yelling at me for a whole... I don't know and then she left. It was pretty cool. I just laughed a lot I guess."

He looked at the girl again. She had pride, he could tell as much. If he was right, if he could keep this up, he assumed she would launch another attack, try and pry a reaction from him. She might try one or two more times, but that was it. He wasn't going to have to take much more time with this, it was more or less a battle won. How do you counter an attack if there isn't one? Why launch an assault yourself if you're met with no resistance?

This was going to be his last line of defense, but he was convinced it was a good one. Inquisitive minds liked to be challenged. The professor made sure to slump. He assumed she couldn't hear, but if she did have ears that worked as well as he hoped they did, she might hear a lazy collapse of posture. He almost had this.

“If this is a complaint would you mind sending it with an owl? It's easier to ignore."