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Victorians could hire 'professional mourners' to attend their loved one's funeral. These people would partake in the procession and were not allowed to speak, just look awfully sad! — Rune


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"The Prodigal Sister" for Ophelia Devine. Faked deaths, scandal, and schemes!
Kristoffer was going to be great at this, because he was great at everything. Also his memory was greater than everyone else's, because he bet no one else had ever lost their virginity somewhere exotic like Morocco. Hell, he bet no one else had even lost their virginity. Inexperienced losers.

Kristoffer Lestrange in Shining, Shimmering Splendour


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7 Deadly Sins

Complete seven threads, one where your character displays each of the Seven Deadly Sins — Pride, Lust, Sloth, Envy, Weath, Gluttony, and Greed. Each thread should be at least ten posts, with at least three being your own. Character accounts can be combined.

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Aspiring Racketeer and Crooked Bookie
Aspiring Racketeer and Crooked Bookie



28 year old Pureblood
5 ft. 6 in.   ❤   Unattached
played by Lynn
93 Posts


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Reuben Crouch
He walked with a swagger which would have been ridiculous, had he not been so good looking.
PROFILE

Full Name: Reuben Winston Crouch

Nickname(s): Ben

Birthdate: Excalibur, High Street, Hogsmeade.

Age: 28

Occupation: Aspiring Racketeer and Crooked Bookie

Blood Status: Pureblood

Residence: 29 August 1859

Hogwarts House: Gryffindor

Wand: 10” Dogwood and Jackalope Antler, Swishy.
Dogwood wands are mischievous and quirky; they become restless if their owner does not provide suitable excitement. Dogwood wands are often noisy spellcasters and refuse to perform non-verbal magic. Reuben was very fond of his original wand, 9 ½” Dogwood and Kneazle Whisker, and was delighted to have been chosen by a second Dogwood want when he needed to replace the first following an unfortunate incident with a thunderbird in 1883.


Family: Malachi Crouch, Father [1824-1877]
Alberta Crouch née Rowle, Mother [1832-1877]
Aldous Crouch, Brother [1855]
Roman Crouch, Brother
November Malfoy née Couch, Sister [1863]
APPEARANCE
Standing at 5’6”, Ben is notably shorter than his older brother, but at least taller than his little sister. He inherited the characteristic thin frame of a Crouch, but since he’s tried to lead a more active lifestyle than his siblings, he’s added at least a little muscle to it. His hair is naturally a bit darker, but tends to pick up sandy blond highlights at the first sign of summer sun. He has grey eyes beneath heavy brows. He keeps his hair short, which at times can make his ears look a bit oversized (though nothing as dramatic as Minister Potter's). Reuben is right-handed.

Never one to care too much about appearances, Reuben can often be seen in as casual dress as the occasion can permit. He can sometimes be seen sporting various stages of stubble even though the fashion is for men to be clean shaven (though he makes the stubble look intentional, not like laziness), and tends to wear clothes until the point where they show obvious signs of use, despite the fact that he grew up with money. He prefers Muggle fashion and is hardly ever seen in robes.

PERSONALITY
What one might describe as ‘free-spirited,’ Reuben enjoys traveling, adventure, and adrenaline. He is reasonably smart but has difficulty keeping his attention on something unless he has a real interest in it. Ben is charismatic and genuinely enjoys socializing, no matter if it’s with men, women, rich, poor, young, old, etc. He learns best through hearing stories and is an excellent listener. He has often been accused of being a flirt, but is too genuine in his interest in people to ever be thought of as a malicious ‘don juan’ type. He holds very liberal views and favors equality and progressive rights, mostly because he’s had experiences talking to people who have swayed him to their side. He’s good with animals and children, but doesn’t have a particular desire for kids--or, for that matter, pets. He’s quite content to go through life without being tied to anything and enjoys renting his single room in the club, and his travel-heavy career.
OTHER
— Boggart —
Himself, old and crippled like Aldous. Or maybe worse than Aldous.

— Amortentia —
Maple sap, which reminds him of America; cardamom, like his mother's perfume; worn leather, which reminds him of flying.

— Sex Life —
Ben is heteroflexile; he's primarily attracted to women, but has on two or three occasions in his wild youth woken up after a drunken reverie snuggling with a half-dressed man and just agreed to put the incident as far from his mind as possible. He is a notorious flirt but unlikely to act on such things without encouragement. His sexual and romantic trysts have typically occurred overseas in the past. He is bolder and pushier when drunk but is also highly susceptible to whiskey dick.

— Languages —
Ben brushes up on languages before going abroad; he learns quickly but also forgets quickly and tends to only keep sparse phrases here and there of various languages. He is not fluent in anything but English.

— Special Skills —
Ben has a natural affinity for working with living things; he is good with animals, people, and, perhaps unexpectedly, children. Magically, he is most adept at defensive magic due to the practice he acquired both through dueling and as a Cursebreaker.

— Transportation —
Ben has ridden the same broomstick since 1877. Her name is Adelaide, and don't you dare say a bad word about her. He also has his apparition license, though prefers to avoid that method of travel because he's secretly worried he'll get splinched like Aldous and end up crippled. He was a frequent applicant for portkeys, until he was banned from requesting them due to a history of irresponsible use; now he's stuck with floo and good old Adelaide. He also sometimes steals Art's flying carpet.

— OWL & NEWT Grades —
OWL Grades
Ancient RunesAcceptable
AstronomyDreadful
Care of Magical CreaturesOutstanding
CharmsAcceptable
Defense Against the Dark ArtsOutstanding
HerbologyAcceptable
History of MagicDreadful
Muggle StudiesExceeds Expectations
PotionsExceeds Expectations
TransfigurationAcceptable


NEWT Grades
Ancient RunesAcceptable
Care of Magical CreaturesExceeds Expectations
Defense Against the Dark ArtsOutstanding
Muggle StudiesAccetptable
PotionsAcceptable
HISTORY
~ 1859 ~

Reuben is born the third and final son to Malachi and Alberta Crouch. He is quickly shoved into the nursery alongside his toddler brother, Roman, and largely forgotten.

~ 1860 - 1865 ~

The children grow well enough, though Reuben immediately proves to be the more rambunctious brother. He is an adventurous toddler and the bane of his poor nanny’s existence, particularly when he shows an early sign of magic by levitating himself onto the top of a wardrobe at only four, and making her climb up to get him down.

In 1863, the family grows with the addition of a younger sister, November. Ben is not allowed to play with the baby, which is probably good; he hadn’t yet really internalized what the word ‘gentle’ meant, and Roman often came away from their play sessions with bruises as a result. It quickly becomes obvious that November is a very different sort of child, and not in the way that Reuben and Roman are different from each other--she doesn’t talk. She barely even makes noise. Even so, Ben takes a liking to her almost as soon as she is old enough to waddle around in he and his brother’s wake. It has a lot to do with the fact that she seems so taken with him, but there’s something else, too--he has a sort of sense that she knows a lot, even if she never says anything. Like maybe she knows him, too, probably better than his two older brothers do.

~ 1866 - 1869~

November ends up starting to speak around the time that Aldous goes to Hogwarts. Honestly, Ben is almost disappointed. He had imagined his little sister’s silence was some sort of game, some secret that she shared with her brothers but kept from the adults, and now that’s come to an end. He does still feel like they have a kind of bond, though--particularly when her first sign of magic involves levitation, just like his did, and at the same age, too.

No one is surprised to hear that Aldous is a Slytherin; Crouches are always Slytherins.

Over the next two years the remaining brothers had progressively more and more academic things filling up their time as they prepared to get their Hogwarts letters. Ben isn’t fond of having to sit for lectures, and Roman well outpaces him in their studies, to the surprise of exactly no one. Although they've been raised more or less in tandem, Roman receives his letter a year before Ben, and leaves him behind at home where Ben is, for the first time in his life, high king of the nursery. Roman is sorted into Slytherin.

~ 1870 - 1871 ~

After some rather eventful school shopping (particularly the visit to get his wand, Ben having been a bit difficult to match), Ben headed off to school. As a fifth year, Aldous is too busy with his own friends to do more than get him on to the train before abandoning him, which suits Reuben just fine--he wants to make his own friends, anyway. Alternating between dragging Roman behind him and abandoning his older brother in a compartment with a stupid book, Ben explored the train and made a few friends before arriving.

The sorting ceremony. Crouches are always Slytherins. Reuben has been eying up all of the kids sent to Slytherin so far, trying to decide which one is going to become his best friend (after years of playing with him at home, he’s tired of his brother). It is quite a shock, then, when the sorting hat is placed on his head and doesn’t even mention Slytherin. Instead, it debates for less than three seconds before declaring him, much to his surprise, a Gryffindor.

But Crouches are always Slytherins. Reuben is afraid to tell his parents that he’s been sorted somewhere else. Does this mean he’s not a Crouch? Maybe he’s secretly a bastard and never knew it?

Of course, it’s not as though he can really keep a secret from his parents when he has two brothers at school. If they’re disappointed, at least they have the kindness not to put it in the letter they write him, and eventually Reuben comes to terms with his house--and then, fairly quickly, becomes fiercely proud of it.

~ 1871 - 1873 ~

Reuben had known ever since attending his first Quidditch game in first year that he wanted to play Quidditch. He wanted his brother to play Quidditch, too, and he wanted to beat him in a match--like brutally beat him. Not that he had anything against Roman, per ce, but he was still feeling as though he had something to prove, being the only Gryffindor Crouch ever, and publicly humiliating his brother would have been the ideal way to prove it, once and for all. Unfortunately, neither of his bookish older brothers have any interest in joining the house team, and even if they did, Reuben doesn’t make the team when he tries out in either his second or third year.

He adds Muggle Studies in third year, just to be contrary--he knows neither of his brothers took Muggle Studies, and so he knows that he can’t be compared to them on that front. He also takes Care of Magical Creatures and Ancient Runes.

~ 1874 – 1876 ~

In his fourth (fifth, until Charming's public opening when I'm putting that year back where I want it to be) year a beater spot opens up on the Gryffindor team, and Reuben finally makes the cut--he’s much better at bludgeoning objects in flight, as it turns out, than anything else he’s tried for. He works much harder at Quidditch than he does at his classes, which is somewhat apparent in his grades. Although he does manage to obtain most of his OWLs the next year, his scores are far from ideal, and he does manage to annoy two of his professors by earning a mark of ‘Dreadful.’ Of course, it’s hard to mention this without comparing it to Roman's performance last year; while his marks aren’t perfect they are rather good, and that is on top of his prefect duties--which everyone insists are a much bigger deal than Ben’s involvement in Quidditch.

He opts to keep on with Care of Magical Creatures, Defense Against the Dark Arts, and Potions because he’s genuinely interested in them (he’s always had more of an interest in classes where there’s a possibility for something to explode), Muggle Studies because he was surprisingly and unexpectedly good at it, and Ancient Runes because he feels as though his family will judge him if he only keeps four classes and one of them is Muggle Studies. He doesn’t anticipate needing any of these classes, because he already knows that he wants to play Quidditch when he gets out of school. He also knows, however, that his parents are unlikely to buy off on this, so he’s keeping it, temporarily, to himself.

The end of his fifth year also coincides with Aldous and his father returning from a year long excursion to Asia, which isn't particularly good news for Ben; after an entire year of relatively little familial scrutiny, he now has two older male relations lingering around looking disappointed about his grades. Whatever.

~ 1876 – 1877 ~

Reuben still hasn’t told anyone that he wants to play Quidditch--better to spring that news on them, he feels, when everyone is in a little better spirits. Aldous goes and gets the sort of job their father can instantly be proud of, and it seems like a good time--but the summer comes and goes with Ben somehow failing to ever bring it up, and soon he’s off to his last year, while Roman goes off on a (much shorter but none the less existent) trip abroad with his father. This is also Nova’s first year, and Reuben watches her sorting with bated breath, secretly convinced that she will end up a Gryffindor, like him. They’ve always had the sort of bond he didn’t feel like he shared with either of his brothers--and they had their first sign of magic at the same age, and in such similar ways. Nova has to be a Gryffindor!

She isn’t a Gryffindor; years later, in retrospect, Ben would be embarrassed to admit he’d ever thought she was, recognizing that he’d been projecting what he wanted his little sister to be instead of who she actually was. There is some camaraderie, however, in her being the second non-Slytherin Crouch, and Ben continues to feel as though they have a special sort of bond (though he doesn’t show it in any very traditional way).

By Christmastime, Roman and his father have returned and Reuben really can’t dodge questions about what he plans to do with his future any more, and he confesses his desire to play professional Quidditch. Suffice it to say, it doesn’t sit very well with anyone, except maybe Nova--Nova isn’t really the type of person to interject when others are arguing, so it’s hard to say what she thinks.

No one seems to care that he gets rather good NEWT grades, given that he’s determined to ‘squander’ them by pursuing a career in Quidditch, which everyone still wholeheartedly disapproves of. Regardless, he tries out for the professional teams shortly after graduation and accepts a position as a second-string beater for the Appleby Arrows (and is only mildly disappointed to no longer be playing alongside his best friend, Art Pettigrew). Ben buys himself a broomstick to celebrate, and names her Adelaide. He still has her, though she's seen better days, and takes her on every traveling excursion.

Is it because he joins the Quidditch team that his father doesn’t take Ben abroad as he did for Aldous and Roman? Or does Reuben insist on joining the Arrows because he knows that there won’t be a trip abroad? That Aldous will always be, has always been, the favorite, and it doesn’t matter whether Ben plays Quidditch, or does something respectable, or joins the circus? He’ll likely never know. In any case, no one offers to take him on a tour of Asia.

~ 1877 ~

‘The Quidditch Thing’ has not ceased to be a point of contention. Neither has the lack of any father-son trip abroad. He takes a sort of glee in pouring all of his effort into Quidditch, to spite his family. He knows that he’s been pulling his weight, and that the promotion to first string is coming sooner or later, and secretly hopes rather foolishly that somehow this will be the breaking point where his parents and brothers finally let him be about his career. Before he can even make it through his first season, however, tragedy strikes. In October, his parents are crushed at the construction site for the home the family had been building in Hogsmeade, and both die.

In the wake of his parents' death, Reuben finds himself under immense pressure from both his brothers to quit the team and do something real with his life. The pressure is one thing, but Ben also feels guilty for his parents’ death--not because he had anything at all to do with it, but because he can’t help but think, irrationally, that his pent-up resentment somehow made their deaths worse, or more tragic. The mixed emotions are overwhelming enough to make him hand in his resignation as an Appleby Arrow at the end of that season, though he isn’t sure what his next step is. He’d never had any plan except Quidditch.

~ 1878 - 1879 ~

Reuben gets a job in the Ministry in March of 1878, though in a different department than his brothers, fearing to live in their shadow. He quickly determines that he absolutely hates working at the Ministry, but he’s at a loss as for what else to do; everything that’s interesting to him isn’t what his brothers would consider a very fitting job for a Crouch.

In 1879 he switches to the Department of Magical Games & Sports, since Roman suggested perhaps he’ll be better there, based on his experience. Working with the Quidditch League on a daily basis, far from making him feel more at home, only makes him resent all the more the career he might have had. He follows the careers of people who he played with on the Gryffindor Quidditch team almost obsessively, picturing how his life could have been different if he’d been allowed to do what he wanted to do. This is probably the only point during his friendship with Art Pettigrew where things got a little bit awkward – Art could hardly fail to pick up on Ben's resentment over not playing Quidditch, though he certainly had plenty of problems of his own at the time.

~ 1880 - 1881 ~

Reuben decides to try and convince his oldest brother that he’s going to become an academic (quite a feat given his scholastic performance at Hogwarts), and quits his job at the Department of Magical Games & Sports to conduct research for a book. He enjoys not working more than he enjoys either researching or writing, but it’s difficult to convince Aldous he’s making progress when he’s quite obviously not; in order to hide his subterfuge, he goes abroad. It’s like the trip his dad was never going to take him on--though he avoids any talk of Asia as though it were the home of the plague. Instead, he bounces around Europe throughout 1881, mostly hanging around in clubs and flirting with women and generally getting very little done that could be called research.

~ 1882 ~

Reuben returns for a few months in the spring of 1882 to see his little sister graduate and debute. Obviously, questions are asked about the ‘book’ he’s been working on, but Reuben isn’t knowledgeable in enough subjects to properly bullshit his way through an entire summer, so he instead claims that the idea for his book--and all of the text he had written so far!--was stolen by a Frenchman, whom he had been working with for nearly a year as a partner and co-writer. He declares that the treachery of the Frenchman has turned him off of writing entirely, and he intends to become a breeder of exotic magical creatures instead.

As the term exotic would imply, this necessitates his traveling abroad once again. In late fall of 1882, he sets sail for the brave new world of America.

~ 1883 - 1884 ~

Having learned from his last mistake with the book, Reuben decides that he has to at least make a show of trying to breed some sort of magical creature--at the very least, so that he can play the part convincingly when he talks to his brothers next. He moves from the coastline towards the midwest, where most of the larger magical creatures can be found roaming. He soon meets Mr. Grady Walsh, a magizoologist with a local farm, and becomes friendly enough with the man that he’s invited to come over to his farm. He meets the entire family: Walsh’s wife, two sons who were just slightly younger than him, and three daughters, aged 21, 19, and 17. It isn’t long before Reuben has become something of a fixture in the Walsh household, frequently coming by for dinner or to help out on their farm. It’s been a long while since he’s dealt with magical creatures (since Hogwarts, in fact), but it comes back to him very quickly, which only ingratiates him to his American hosts even more. He grows particularly close to the Walsh’s oldest daughter, Una, and even ends up sharing a kiss with her in early 1884.

Of course, all good things must come to an end. Aldous’ boss apparently had a heart attack in May, which means his brother got a promotion--and with it, oversight in to American-British relations, where it just so happened that they were discussing the breeding of magical creatures, and the ones that Reuben was using as a cover story particularly. His brother is less than amused to discover that Reuben’s “business venture” is actually illegal in America, though Ben isn’t sure whether Aldous is upset because he thinks that Reuben is lying to him (again), or whether he’s worried that he isn’t lying and is about to get arrested. In any case, Reuben is summarily ordered back to Britain. Being ordered around by one’s brother isn’t particularly sexy, so that isn’t that he tells Una (or any of the Walshes)--but he’s become close enough to her that he doesn’t want to lie to her, like he’s been lying to everyone else, and so he simply says his goodbyes to her parents and leaves.

The journey back to the east coast of America, and then across the Atlantic, takes a good deal of time, and so Reuben has time to plan how he’s going to get himself out of this before having to face off with his brother. Aldous probably objects to him not having a job, he figures (or at least not a legal job, if he thinks Ben was actually breeding creatures), and so if he shows up and he has a job, that ought to take the wind out of his sails a little bit. Of course, he doesn’t want to actually work (unless he can play Quidditch again), and he certainly doesn’t want to be cooped up in Britain--something he feels is almost a certainty based on the tone of his brother’s last letter.

Writing to old school friends and networking as best he can through owl, Reuben manages to get himself hired as a freelance Cursebreaker. Hardly the ideal career, from the upper class pureblood point of view, but it appeals to Ben--there’s a sense of danger that reminds him of the classes he had enjoyed in Hogwarts, and it allows him to continue traveling while still technically living in England. Best of all, it’s a job that will actually pay him, so Aldous can hardly complain, right?

His older brother certainly wasn’t thrilled, but he didn’t outright prohibit Reuben from going forward with it. To convince his brother that he was serious about settling into this new profession, and to some sort of ‘roots’ in Britain, he joined a club--though he stayed away from Black’s in favor of Excalibur. Finding that he enjoyed the company (far more than he might have enjoyed the company at Black’s), he moved to a room at Excalibur’s shortly after his return to England--which, aside from the excellent company, provided the bonus of not having to live with Aldous.

Another bonus is that he’s not in the house when it catches fire that summer. He feels vaguely guilty about not being there for Nova, and for Aldous being so badly burned trying to ensure she was safe, and for the whole… splinching thing… but… well, there’s not really much he can do about it. He feels awkward enough that he opts to avoid his siblings for a few months while the house is being rebuilt, and conveniently enough, his first curse-breaking trip takes him out of the country for just the suitable length of time.

~ 1885 - 1886 ~

Nova meets a man and gets engaged, which officially makes Reuben the only member of the family that isn’t doing what he’s supposed to be doing. Ben feels, irrationally, a little betrayed, but it’s not as though he’s been a big enough part of his sister’s life, through all his absences, to be able to offer any opinions on that front. She’s pregnant by the end of the year, and then in 1886, Reuben becomes an uncle. That’s sort of scary.

Aldous hasn’t made any move to marry, yet, and Ben figures this is the sort of thing where he ought to follow his more societally-in-tune brothers’ leads. Besides, while he enjoys his career, it’s hardly the sort of job that would support an upper class household on its own, and he doesn’t seriously think that his older brother will keep supporting him indefinitely--particularly not if there are children involved. Honestly, it’s kind of amazing that he hasn’t already been completely cut off (and maybe hints that his brothers are a bit more sentimental than Reuben might have assumed).

He doesn’t have any serious relationships with women, though he’s known for being something of a flirt at balls, and tends to have interactions that go a bit past flirting when he’s out of town on business--but so far, none have ever followed him home or become problematic the way that love affairs often are.

~ 1887 ~

In spring of 1887, Ben has an unexpected reunion with his former flame Una Walsh, who is… less than thrilled to see him, at least initially. They eventually rebuild their bridges, while Ben is busy not paying attention to which other ones he's burning down. After meeting a wealthy, pureblood girl quite by accident and getting her shunted off to Mexico, Ben has to go and rescue her, which gives her a bit of an infatuation for him. He picks up on this, and flirts casually with her until it is pointed out to him that she is exactly the sort of girl his brothers would probably love for him to marry. Because Ben doesn't do well with commitment, or change, or feelings, he ends up treating her rather cruelly in order to get her to move on and leave him be.

All in all, the plan worked much more effectively than he was expecting. He managed to not only convince the girl in question that he was a rake and a vagabond, but also her sister (who has apparently been reading his mail), and Aldous and Roman, too (who got involved in this somehow because rich girls are fucking crazy). In order to avoid making any powerful enemies and to salvage the family's reputation, Aldous offers Ben a choice—either report to an asylum to be "cured" of his vile ways (which Ben has no desire to be cured of) or go into exile in Canada for several months until things "calm down."

Unsurprisingly, Ben chooses the latter, though it causes a rift between him and his employer. While sulking in Canada, he learns that his brother Roman is making political overtures while he's away, which makes him incredibly bitter as he decides his brothers must have wanted him out of the public eye all along. The rich girl with her crazy-ass sister was just the most convenient excuse. He feels like he was manipulated when he was emotionally vulnerable (because he did, in fact, sort of like her) and has been oscillating between snarkily passive aggressive and openly hostile towards his brothers ever since.

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PLAYER INFORMATION
Played By: Lynn

Contact: Ask for Skype

Plot Preferences:

Networking: The Room Where It Happens

Registration Date: March 3, 2018

Date of Birth: August 29

Local Time: April 26, 2018 at 11:09 PM

Status:
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Joined: March 3, 2018

Last online: 8 hours ago
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Reuben Crouch's Signature
He is sensible and simple; bold and natural
So strange and agreeable; there is nothing formidable
His smile is most naive, cheerful and good-natured
And he’s as handsome up close as at a distance