Did you know?
The Language of the Flowers was a popular method to express feelings where words might be improper, but did you know other means of doing so? Some ladies used their parasols, as well as their fans, gloves, and hankies to flirt with a gentleman (or alternatively, tell them to shove it!). — Bree ( Submit your own)
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Questionable Friend/Crush for Philip Aymslowe.
When your mum thinks you're gay for your best friend (but you probably are)
This boy, then. He wasn't new. Wasn't one of the worst people in the common room, those rotten rich boys - like Mr. Jailkeeper - who could not fathom a world beyond their own farts. Was a good working class lad, so he'd heard. Had a bit of a weird looking face, and a bit of a weird thing for preaching. Still.Aubrey Davis in The Under-Sofa
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Post 3+ times in three or more class threads during the course of a school year. Must all be done with the same character, be they a professor, student, or school portrait or ghost!

Issue #190 - The Curse of the Minister's Wife

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How To Defend Yourself From A Vampire Attack (Without Magic)
As the fog continues to permeate Hogsmeade, how can any of us be sure if we are truly safe from those creatures who were once restricted only to the dark of the night? Follow some easy precautions to prevent yourself from becoming the next victim of these bloodthirsty beings.

1. Make a garlic garland.
Vampires prefer to feed from the victim's neck, where the blood is flowing fastest and thickest. Make yours unattractive by wearing a garland of garlic to bed each night. The scent will linger like a perfume and repel any passing vampires, causing them to seek other targets. For the especially cautious, feel free to wear a garlic necklace during the day as well (if you can make one that is reasonably fashionable) or sew garlic into hidden pockets of your dresses.

2. Stay at home.
Vampires are not permitted to enter private dwellings without an invitation. Whenever possible, stay home and accept no unexpected visitors, no matter how harmless they may appear. It is not entirely unreasonable to assume a vampire may have found some way of disguising what they are, or a convenient cover story to gain entry to your home — perhaps they may even claim to be fleeing a potential vampire attack themselves! Bar your door against anyone you do not recognize (or, to be especially safe, even those you do recognize, if you haven't seen them in three days or more — anyone can fall victim for vampirification!)

3. Carry a hand mirror.
Vampires are incapable of creating a reflection. Carrying a hand mirror with you and using it to 'check' anyone who approaches may give you advance warning of an approaching vampire who might otherwise have been able to get dangerously close to you in the fog before being discovered. If you do catch a vampire in this way, scream out immediately and run towards the nearest public building. A vampire is unlikely to attempt to continue an attack in a a crowd.

4. Bribe them.
If all else fails, a vampire bent on attacking may be persuaded to choose another victim if you can offer them compensation. Buy a blood-flavored lollipop to keep in your coin purse if you do intend to go out, so that you can offer the attacker both blood and money in order to persuade them to let you pass unharmed.

Vampires are formidable foes even with the use of magic; protect yourself today!

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What Is Your Teacup Trying To Tell You?
Those who have studied divination ought to be familiar with the art of tesseomancy but you don't have to have a professional reader of tea leaves on hand or even an O.W.L. in Divination to read your own tea leaves with our easy to interpret guide.

To begin, prepare a cup of tea as you would usually. For easier reading, opt for a tea cup without a decorative pattern on the inside and finely prepared tea leaves. Do not strain the leaves when pouring the tea! Once the tea is ready, drink until there remains only a teaspoon of liquid left in the cup.

Pause for a moment and think about what you'd like to find out about your future from the tea leaves.

Take the teacup in your left hand and swirl the contents three times. Gently place the teacup upside down upon the saucer. With your left hand once again, turn the cup three times to the left.

Think back to what you want to find out from your reading while placing both hands upon the teacup. Do this for seven seconds.

After the seven seconds turn the teacup back over, making sure the handle is pointed towards you. If you look inside the cup, you should see that the leaves have arranged themselves in curious clumps.

In your cup you might be able to make out one or more of the following symbols:

Bear — Finding a bear in your cup suggests you may be venturing north soon, or else going on a very long journey.

Bell — A single bell suggests you are due for some wonderful news! Multiple bells implies an upcoming wedding - if you are already married it may be worth taking a greater interest in your spouse's well-being.

Coffin — Death or bereavement.

Cradle — If you are not expecting a child, you likely will be soon! If the cradle is broken, however, it indicates fear or misfortune over a child.

Crup — Should you spot a crup in your cup you will likely experience some unpleasantness involving one or more muggles.

Eels — You have unfaithful friends! Nasty gossip and betrayal are on the cards for you.

Fan — Admiration, flirtation, and attention from the opposite sex. Beware eels and other less fortunate symbols should they appear alongside the fan!

Frog — The frog has many meanings though it is chiefly a symbol of change. You may be changing your place of residence or changing occupation in some way. The change may be for the worse if the frog is surrounded by bad omens.

Kite — You are approaching a time of deprivation or potential scandal.

Mask — If you spot a mask in your cup, the object of your affections has been false towards you and separation looms.

Names — Should the name of a place or person reveal itself amongst the tea leaves, take note of the surrounding symbols for they pertain to that individual or location.

Padlock — The open padlock suggests a pleasant surprise while the closed padlock suggests a... less pleasant surprise.

Rabbit — A complex symbol to interpret. The rabbit may mean that the illness of a child is in your future, if the rabbit appears to be dead then financial struggle or domestic monotony may lie ahead. More than one rabbit means you must take measures to procure your own happiness, though it may be a more humble happiness than you envisaged for yourself.

Rose — Luck, love, and happiness await!

Scythe — Sorrow and grief.

Telescope — Take care of your eyes in the coming months, you may be blighted with ocular woes.

Thimble — If you are unmarried you will likely stay as such. If you are married a change in your household may be coming.

Urn — Sickness.

Vampire — A vampire in your cup could mean the obvious - an encounter with a vampire. It may also forewarn of misery or the announcement of a death.

If you wish to delve further into your tea leaves, Thea Lefèvre's book Cupping Your Future is a highly insightful and comprehensive guide to Tesseomancy.
The fineness of your tea leaves can make all the difference! Larger leaves make for more difficulty and less accuracy.

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Would the fate of the Minister's wives have been different if a more conservative candidate had been elected in lieu of the sharply liberal candidates seen in the last decade? Or does the malice of Mrs. Spavin stretch to include anyone who stands to replace her husband? The Curse of the Minister's Wife
Britain has seen a wide array of Ministers in the past several years, with no one being able to hold the post down longer than a handful of years since the disgrace and subsequent imprisonment of former Minister Farris Spavin. There has been an equally high volume of Minister's wives, though no one seems to have survived their husband's term in office. No one batted an eyelash when Mrs. Eulalie Potter died in childbirth in 1884, as she had always been of a rather retiring nature and a frailer constitution (and the shock of her husband's murder followed so shortly afterwards that it was quite impossible to focus on the event for long). The subsequent election of Minister Urquart was followed less than a year later by the sudden and unexpected death of his wife, who fell to an unexpected bite from a venomous snake.

This was, to one reporter, a bit suspicious, and it was with the death of Mrs. Mary Urquart that our investigation began.

The wife of former Minister Faris Spavin has been something of an enigma in the years since her husband was deposed, having entirely faded into social obscurity and residing now with a distant relation in northern England. Mrs. Spavin's own views on Muggles and Muggleborns are not entirely known, but she seems to have become a bitter and hardened woman by the loss of her husband, and speaks of every subsequent Minister (when the subject was, at last, able to be broached) with derision, and at one point described them as weak men, with equally weak wives before she recovered her decorum and fell silent on the matter.

Those close to Mrs. Spavin have said that she hardly spoke a word from the time of her husband's imprisonment until the death of Mrs. Potter in 1883, but has been slowly recovering some of her old iron in the years since. It seems clear that the woman takes pleasure in the misfortunes of her husband's successors, and it is not entirely unreasonable, in the view of our investigators, that she had something to do with them!

"Mrs. Spavin is a hard, cruel woman; she would have wanted revenge," said private detective Fairweather Matthew, who had looked into the case at the request of a reporter. "And, being a woman and thus concerned primarily with the domestic sphere, it would naturally have occurred to her first and foremost to use that sphere to instigate that revenge."

Is the Minister's wife cursed? The evidence mounts in favor of the supposition, though it is not clear at this point whether it is the role itself which bears the curse (which is a much more powerful type of magic, and which may outlive Mrs. Spavin) or whether the woman herself is cursing each woman in turn. The fate of the Urquart family might suggest the latter; when the death of Mrs. Mary Urquart failed to cause then-Minister Urquart to crumble, his domestic difficulties were only compounded (first by the disappointment of Miss Lovegood, and then by the well-known fate of his daughter, Topaz Urquart) until he was at last forced to resign.

In any case, there is every probability that Mrs. Ross, the current wife of Minister Ross, is marked as Mrs. Spavin's next target. Both of her predecessors have failed to last through their husband's first year in office; what will befall the poor Mrs. Ross before the turn of the new year?
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Missed Connections
Lunch Dates

Having enjoyed our chat over lunch a few months ago, I thought that we may continue our acquaintanceship. However, I have not heard from you since, and could not reach out due to a family tragedy and, of course, the fog. If you are interested in speaking once more, I would like to renew our relationship.
Family Values

We used to be sisters, but then I died. Having found myself once more, I would love to hear from you. I think I've earned it.

Adventurers Wanted
When tackling the Irvingly fog, I suffered a grievous injury, and I believe you saved my life. I would like to repay you in any way possible, and have also found myself to be in love with you. Write to me, and the story of our lives will be written in the stars.
Bad Reputation

We used to work together, and then you got in trouble. However, I do so miss the talks that we had when you still came here, and would like to continue them through writing. I know that you have lost a lot, and surely you would not want to lose my company as well?

You have a questionable past. I have a questionable future. We met in the park a few months ago, and I think that we deserve each other. Please reach out.
Wand Woods

I bought a wand, and in the process gained a strong potential for affection from you. You know who I am, and I think we have the strong potential for a future together - as long as I promise not to break the wand you sold me!
Reconnection is just an owl away! Send a letter in with your personal advertisement or response to have it printed in the next issue. Address your letters to: Missed Connections, Witch Weekly.
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