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 —

Ester Montgomery for Thomas Montgomery. The one that got away (with the pornographer...)
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

— Nominate a quote —

Post at least once with the same character every day for a month.


10th March, 1888 — Hogsmeade Hospital, Female Staff Room
Dionisia Tweedy
Shuffling slowly into the female staff room Belle breathed a sigh of relief to find it empty before the twinge in her back reminded her that she might well have misjudged her luck. The shift had been long - that much she was used to - but with the Creature-Induced injuries head off sick she had been called up to consult on a patient and ended up being attacked by the same creature that had burrowed inside him. The sharp slashes to her lower back had been delivered before any of them could react and Belle had found herself gritting her teeth and calling upon the assistant head to finish the task.

What had become of the patient she didn't know but a long, slow stumble to the staff room had left her quite sure that whilst she wasn't in imminent danger of dropping down dead she might well have to call for help before the night was through. Merlin, who on earth was there? She was a head of department and commanded a certain degree of respect: asking any of her underlings to look after her would be, quite frankly, rather embarrassing.

Lowering herself sideways in the first seat she found Belle let her head fall against the back and let out a pained groan just loud enough to block out the sound of the door opening behind her.

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Dionisia, thought not trained in a specific department as a full healer, had managed to learn how to treat emergencies from all of the hospital's departments. She couldn't brew the highly-specific potions required to cure a disease the caused one's fingernails to grow rapidly, nor could she write up a long-term plan for treating a dragon burn; she could, however, fix up bites and scratches and treat symptoms.

She'd just gotten back to the hospital after helping a much older gentleman whose legs had been turned to stone after suffering a wand mishap and had been heading to the female staff room with the hopes of grabbing the sandwich her coworker had said she could have. It was then that she recognized a figure stumbling into one of the rooms.

Breaking out into a tired job, Dionisia entered the room quietly. The woman in question, Mrs. Annabelle Bones, seemed to be breathing through her teeth. "Mrs. Bones?" she asked softly, not wanting to startle the woman. "You're injured." That much was clear, at least when she stepped into the (albeit dimmed) light. Her robes had tears in them; had someone gone rabid in the Magical Bugs ward?

"Oh Lord, what happened?" she asked, beginning to search her pockets for medicine, bandages, anything.

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Lifting her head proved a great deal more of an effort than Belle had imagined it would but still she managed it to identify the speaker and was relieved to see Miss Tweedy. If she had to be found better that it be a mediwitch who would deal with things quickly and efficiently, without feeling the need to call in assistance. Merlin, she could have ended up with an intern and then it would have been all over the hospital in minutes!

“Nothing too dramatic I’m afraid,” she said ruefully, trying to shift her body into a more upright position whilst being fully aware that it was folly. “I’m sure they’re on top of the situation upstairs but I’m a little worse for wear,” she said, hissing over the last word as she inadvertently pulled at one of her wounds.

“Lock the door if you will Miss Tweedy, I need you to help me out of these robes.”

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Dionisia did as she was told without question, locking the door before approaching the injured Mrs. Bones. The elder witch was in charge of the Magical Bugs department, leaving her wondering what sort of illness could have caused a patient to inflict such an injury upon the head of department! The closer she got, and upon lighting the tip of her wand to take a closer look, it became apparent that there were scratches.

While carefully helping Mrs. Bones out of her robe, Dionisia began asking the simple, basic question she needed to ask: "Did another person do this, Mrs. Bones? Or were you asked to assist elsewhere?" she asked concernedly. "These scratches — they're fairly deep," she noted aloud.

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The visible note of concern in the girl’s voice would have lighted the embers of hope that existed in Belle’s heart that the future of healing in their community would be strong and filled with compassionate, emphatic individuals were it not for the searing pain consuming her body. She had felt worse of course but it was hard to recall those moments when she could feel blood trickling across her skin and every movement pulled at her wounds.

“I’m not surprised,” she replied with a sharp intake of breath as her robes came away and the cold air hit her cuts. “The claws of that thing were the same length as its arms…I wouldn’t recommend going up to Creatures in the near future Miss Tweedy,” she said, twisting her neck to meet the girl’s eye and managing a small smile. “Although they’ve seen off two heads of department in as many days so perhaps someone with quicker reaction times would be a better fit.”

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Dionisia didn't want to think about Creature-Induced Injuries, especially after helping with the victims of the Wizarding World Market disaster. Of course, she'd handled gruesome injuries before, but there was something about being in the middle of a disaster zone — with multiple bodies scattered around her — that messed up a person's emotional health.

Like any good mediwitch would do, Dionisia began digging through her pocket (which, of course, had been adorned with an undetectable extension charm) in search of dittany and a cooling paste. She had no doubt that Mrs. Bones would recover from her injuries, but it would be numbing the pain while also assuring she could function that was the difficult part. Had she been anyone else, she might have found herself in a hospital bed already.

Gently applying the dittany with what applicator she had, she found that the wounds seemed to almost pop at the touch; that was enough to make her wince. She smiled back at the healer-in-charge, pleased that the woman was capable of mustering even the smallest of grin in her state.

"Please tell me if the pain is too much for you. I don't want to render you worse off than you already are," she soothed, gently pressing the cooling paste into her skin. At least that should be able to stop the burning.

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The dittany stung so much Belle had brief, dazed, desperate thoughts that someone must had swapped it for lemon juice mixed with salt water, with a few razor blades thrown in for good measure, before, thankfully, the sharp sting gave way to a dull, much more welcome ache. She breathed a sigh of relief the moment it came and the tension she had not even noticed was holding her body hostage gave way to a limp, exhausted feeling and, embarrassingly, she even felt tears cloud her vision.

"It's fine-" she sniffled and gulped, trying to get ahold of herself and not behave like a child who had scraped their knee falling from a broomstick. "Really...I'm fine, I," might have left the children alone. "I," might not have cleared the air with Rufina. "Oh for goodness sake," she said, trying to laugh through her inconvenient show of emotion. "Forgive me Miss Tweedy, I don't know what's come over me."
[-] The following 1 user Likes Annabelle Bones's post:
   Bella Scrimgeour

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Dionisia had never seen Mrs. Bones so vulnerable, especially not while she was sniffling and battling tears. It was sort of endearing, she thought — a thought that was enough to bring a flush of pink to her cheeks. She stayed quiet as she continued tending to the woman's wounds, carefully moving her wand in a stitching motion as she closed one especially deep wound by magical means. A calming draught would have been a nice thing to soothe the distraught healer-in-charge, but Dionisia usually grabbed those before leaving the hospital on emergency runs, and she'd just arrived back.

"Shh, it's fine, Mrs. Bones," she soothed, "you're allowed to be in pain. We may be witches, but we're not super-humans," she teased, smoothing down some of the tears in woman's robes as she prepared to close the gashes.

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As each wound healed under the girl’s expertly wielded wand Belle felt a modicum of control return to her body and a significant decrease in pain that was incredibly welcome. It was almost enough to make her cry again but she controlled herself, buoyed by the feeling of her healing back into recovering some of her professionalism.

Fortunately, even if she had not been able to, Miss Tweedy was far from the worse person in the hospital for her to have bumped into.

“Sometimes I rather think we’re expected to be,” she said wryly, offering the girl a smile over her shoulder, thankful that she could move some of her muscles without her body screaming out in agony. “At least in the eyes of everybody around us, less they begin to think we might have bodies underneath our hospital robes and thoughts in our heads that do not pertain to our duty.”

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Dionisia opened her mouth before promptly closing it once more. She realized that, while feminism was something she felt deeply about, it perhaps wasn't the best topic to be discussing while at work — and that was she even remembered that Mrs. Bones was not merely a woman, but a woman of immense privilege. As much as she found the older woman charming, she wasn't so comfortable broaching the topic of equal pay and blood equality with a woman she assumed associated with others who would never offer her a second glance.

"I suppose that's the price to pay for our careers," she offered as a less-risky answer. "Patients expect that we put their needs before ours — which, I suppose, is not completely untrue to the values of many healers."

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There was evasion there, she was sure of it, she had heard similar tones offered by endless patients who did not want to disclose where they had come by their mysterious injuries, and had she been in a clearer state of mind Belle might have pushed. But now was not the time and, as much as she might think it a lovely idea in her head, Miss Tweedy was not really her friend and never would be.

Even on a professional level she was closer to the director of the whole hospital than she ever would be a mediwitch. It was a shame really – she rather liked the young woman.

“You certainly embody those values Miss Tweedy, I feel good as new,” she said with a smile, lying but not unkindly. She did feel better. Blood was not obviously trickling down her back and her skin did not feel like it was getting any clammier. She would do to get home at least.

Then maybe Rosamund could take a look. At least her daughter might give her a straight answer.

“Hopefully I’ll be the only member of staff you need to patch up today.”

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Dionisia tried to ignore any insincerity that might have been present in Mrs. Bone's tone; the healer-in-charge was in pain, and as such her words shouldn't be taken so heavily. The mediwitch offered a smile, stepping back to allow Mrs. Bones a chance to straighten herself up and put her clothes in place so Dionisia could assist her further.

"Do you need me to fix the dress? I'm sure I could find some thread," she said, referring to the small slices that ran down her bodice's backside. "You should go home for the day. If you need me, I-I'll be on call."

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“That won’t be necessary thank you Miss Tweedy, I don’t keep a lady’s maid but my sisters’ will do,” she replied, trying not to think about how bedraggled she must look. Not being a doyenne of society hardly meant she relished looking a state in public; women in her position could hardly afford a single hair out of place, let alone this.

“If you wouldn’t mind letting Mr Keene know…well, he hardly needs to know all of the details, I’m sure you’ll think of something.”

She was awkward now, babbling, unable to think of what to say.

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Mrs. Bones seemed to have lost her wits, leaving Dionisia feeling awful. She should go home—that much was for sure—but Dionisia wasn't sure if she bought the comment on her sisters' lady's maids.

"I do hope they're trained in medical matters," she said soothingly, touching the healer-in-charge's arm. "All will be taken care of here; you need to go home and rest. Like I said, I'll be here if I'm needed."

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Embarrassed, and becoming increasingly so as Miss Tweedy – bless her heart – made every effort to be kind, Belle nodded her thanks stiltedly.

“Thank you,” she said again, a small smile on her lips now that the pain in her back was lessening. With a final nod she apparated away, hoping against hope that the next time she saw the girl she would have forgotten what a mess her superior was at the moment.

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