Charming is a Victorian Era Harry Potter roleplay set primarily in the village of Hogsmeade, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and the non-canon village of Irvingly. Characters of all classes, both magical and muggle — and even non-human! — are welcome.

With a member driven story line, monthly games and events, and a friendly and drama-free community focused on quality over quantity, the only thing you can be sure of is fun!
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  • Hogwarts '87
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    01.11 I've got a bit of a reputation...
    01.06 AC underway, and a puzzle to solve!
    01.01 Happy new year! Have some announcements of varying importance.
    12.31 Enter the Winter Labyrinth if you dare!
    12.23 Professional Quidditch things...
    12.21 New stamp!
    12.20 Concerning immortality
    12.16 A heads up that the Secret Swap deadline is fast approaching!
    12.14 Introducing our new Minister of Magic!
    12.13 On the first day of Charming, Kayte gave to me...
    12.11 Some quick reminders!
    12.08 Another peek at what's to come...
    12.05 It's election day! OOC, at least.
    12.04 We have our PW winners for November!
    12.02 New Skins! In less exciting news, the AC is underway.
    11.27 AC Saturday and election next week!
    11.21 A glimpse at post-move changes.
    11.13 This news is not at all big. Do not bother with it.
    Forgot What Home Feels Like
    Well, that settled it. Alfred stopped walking and looked about to get his bearings. He had known his way around London passably well before the expedition--at least enough to get to and from the main headquarters building, which had been the primary location he'd been dealing with here. That being said, the city had changed a lot in the five years he'd been away, and now he wasn't immediately sure which way to go.

    "Er--this way, I think?" he said uncertainly, starting down a street that looked vaguely familiar. The buildings had changed--some had gotten older and dirtier, and some had disappeared entirely to be replaced by things that all looked strange and awkwardly out of place, as though they'd been cut from some other city and dropped into place. Still, he thought he was going the right direction. Did he know the way from the navy office to Diagon Alley? He thought he probably did. Did he know the way back to Evander's? Not a chance. Well, maybe someone would have a floo he could use.

    They should have floo'd in the first place, he realized, instead of just setting about the city, but it wasn't as though Alfred had had any concrete destination in mind when he'd told Paul to walk with him. He'd just wanted to get away from Evander's house. He really just wanted to get away from people, because they were everywhere, but the city didn't offer many opportunities for that.

    "Is the place where your parents live quieter?" he asked. "I think I might like something quieter. London is so busy, after--well, you know," he said with a shrug.
    Pince followed after his friend. He didn't remember where the navy headquarters were, seeing that he'd only been there twice or thrice at most. He generally wasn't that great at direction. He was far too reliant on magic to get to places. That being said, he was hesitant to try apparating again after five years. His license would probably need to be updated before he made such an attempt.

    "My mother lives there," Paul pointed out. He sighed - he knew that his mother meant well. "But yeah, it is. Oh! And my cousin opened this resort while I was away. We could go there. Herbert and I have always been close."
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    Alfred had never had any issues living with his mother before the expedition, but then, he hadn't been home the majority of the time. She had also allowed him to act autonomously--he had been treated as an adult from the day he'd graduated Hogwarts, more or less. Paul's mother was an entirely different animal, and he could sympathize with his friend's desire not to be babied.

    "A resort?" he echoed, raising an eyebrow. A resort sounded very posh to him, like the sort of thing rich people went to stay at when their doctors told them the Mediterranean air would help their health (Alfred did not seriously believe the Mediterranean air was vastly different from anywhere else, having experienced his fair share of it in his sailing career). It definitely didn't sound like the sort of thing he was used to doing for a lark. Then again, what was he used to doing for larks? It wasn't as though he was going to spear-hunting for wild animals in the jungle on the week-ends now that he was back in England. "We're going to come off of a five year stint in the wilderness and go lay out and bask on the beach at a resort?"
    "Why not?" Paul grinned. "The sea air will do us good. We've been through so much, John. We deserve a break." Paul didn't feel ready to go back to being a proper, useful adult in polite British society quite yet. His days as an archaeologist seemed so far away. He couldn't just walk back to the museum and resume whatever he had been working on last.

    He also didn't want to be babied at home, though.
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    Alfred let out a short, sarcastic puff of breath, a cross between a laugh and a scoff. "The sea air," he repeated incredulously. He grinned at Paul, wondering if he realized how silly that sounded, considering everything they'd been through, and the impetus of it all. "I think the sea air has done enough for us already. Where is this place, Italy?"

    (In Alfred's mind, resorts did not exist except on the Mediterranean, because no one seemed to go anywhere else for beach holidays).
    "Here, actually," Paul replied. "In Sanditon. Or it's called the Sanditon. But it's most certainly in Great Britain." His father had told him all about it when he gave him a run down on what the family had been up to.

    Paul laughed. "I bet that we'd manage to get lost even in the pool that is the Mediterranean."
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    Alfred made a face. "I resent that," he said, sticking his hands into his pockets and pushing his chest out in an over-the-top proud sort of stance. "I did manage to sail all over the world for years without getting lost, I'll have you know," he pointed out. "You're clearly the problem."
    "Maybe I am the problem," Paul joked. "Maybe you should have thrown me overboard in the first place. Sacrificed me to mighty Poseidon or whatever sea gods you sailors worship."
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    Alfred didn't really believe in any kind of god, but he did pretend to believe in sea-related gods because... well, honestly, it was just part of the aesthetic. He didn't actually think Poseidon had much to do with the sea state or the way the wind blew, but it was fun to trade stories about his lore on the decks, and some of the sailors were superstitious enough to carry pendants or talismans with Neptune or one of the minor sea deities on them. Alfred himself was just superstitious enough that when he'd once been given one of those talismans, he hadn't thrown it away (just in case), but the shipwreck had ensured that and most of his other belongings were scattered to the wind.

    Maybe the Neptune talisman had helped. The real trouble had started after the shipwreck, which was when he'd lost it. If he had grown up with a different background (Paul's, for instance), he might have made a rather large ordeal of that epiphany. As it was, he let it slide and assumed it probably had nothing to do with reality.

    "We could've thrown you overboard," he remarked, with an amused smile. "But I don't think Poseidon would've taken you. You're not nearly pretty enough for him."
    Paul pointed at himself, feigning offense. "Maybe I should get a haircut. You seem to have forgotten me at my prime!" He'd looked vastly different when the Sycorax had first set sail. He'd had short hair then, which he'd brushed behind and he didn't have the beard. He'd looked just like a posh university student back then. It had fit that Paul Pince - the Cambridge graduate, the budding archaeologist and historian. Back then, he'd assumed that he'd work on a field until a certain age and then he'd begin writing books until he concluded his career with some kind of teaching position.

    Now... Paul wasn't sure if he wanted to be part of the stifling environment of academia anymore. Today's Paul would feel out of place there.
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    Alfred found it hard to picture Paul without his long hair, though of course the majority of the time he'd known him, he hadn't had a crazy mane or beard. They'd been roommates for seven years in Gryffindor, after all, and then the occasional run-ins they'd had between then and the start of the expedition, Paul had always been quite appropriately groomed. Then again, so had Alfred, and he was finding it hard to recognize himself without a beard and longer hair. He was glad he hadn't cut any more of it, because even without the beard he felt a little naked--which was ridiculous, since he was wearing more clothes today than he had been for the past three years.

    Before he could respond with some sort of joke about Paul 'in his prime,' however, they'd come up to the storefront that housed the naval headquarters--or had done. The windows were dark and the building looked disused. Alfred stopped in his tracks, staring.
    To prove how dependant Paul had once been to magical means of transportation: he didn't immediately understand why John had stopped. He would have passed the building, hadn't he been with his friend. It looked, after all, abandoned.

    "They may have changed locations?" Paul offered with a shrug. That wouldn't be the strangest thing in the world. "Maybe they've moved to Irvingly. Land's cheaper there."
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    Moving offices sometime during the span of five years wasn't unreasonable. In fact, it was entirely likely that Paul's theory was correct, and the office was located somewhere in another city or even just somewhere else in London. Still, it was strange to see the storefront that had served as a central hub of his entire adult life prior to the expedition looking so abandoned. It was as though he'd stumbled across something that had died.

    "You're probably right," Alfred agreed, but his tone was rather uneasy and he kept his eyes on the empty windows for a moment. The dark windows looked, to him, like hollow eyes--the way the eyes of the men had looked, after they'd been wandering for months and most of their friends were dead and the possibility of getting home was seeming ever slimmer. It was eerie, seeing such a visceral reminder of their time away here, nestled in the middle of this busy city. "I guess I'll write."
    Paul made a sound of approval. Having noticed his friend's sombered mood, he offered: "Why don't we hit up Diagon Alley now? That, I'm confident, is still where we left it."
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