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Welcome to Charming, the year is now 1892. It’s time to join us and immerse yourself in scandal and drama interlaced with magic both light and dark.

Where will you fall?

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“Got the morbs” was Victorian slang for a temporary melancholia — Dante
In a panic sort of reaction, she shut the door but neglected to make sure she was on the other side of it.
the thrill of the chase moves in mysterious ways


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passage of time
#1
February 7, 1892 - The Three Broomsticks
Hogsmeade made him nostalgic. There was something about being so close to Hogwarts and the memories that surrounded the small village; every turn he brought up some kind of memory that brought a smile to his lips. Gus hadn’t made his way here often after graduating, only when his sister dragged him as a chaperone for something she wanted to see. Even his visits home had become more sporadic over the years, going from a few months to once a year, then once every two. (Namely whenever Ma racked up the guilt in her letters that she hadn’t seen him in so long she could barely remember what his face looked like - as if he didn’t resemble any of his family members.)

Gus bundled his scarf closer around his neck at the biting wind, thankful it wasn’t snowing - he hated the snow. It was cold, wet and covered everything that was beautiful about Hogsmeade; at least snow didn’t cover the sweet scent in the air, and he made a mental note to grab some sweets to tuck away in his desk before he turned home. Trudging past the shop Gus couldn’t help but frown; knew he wouldn’t make his way to the Three Broomsticks if he paused now.

He was happy to duck inside the pub and inhale deeply, content to finally be somewhere warm; there was a shout of complaints as the door opened and Gus merely grinned at them, wondering why patrons chose to sit so close to the door during the winter. Although, as he gazed around, he found that perhaps it was only the place to sit. The Three Broomsticks was packed.

Gus made his way over toward the bar, figuring he could at least wrap his fingers around somewhere warm while he waited for a place to sit; a familiar face made him pause, followed by a large grin as he saddled up next to Winnie Moony. While she’d been one of his best friends during Hogwarts, Gus had dropped the ball in upkeeping most of his friendships when he’d left. His departure had been had been abrupt, but it was something he had to do for himself.

“Do you ever remember there being so many old people here when we were kids?” He asked as he turned toward her, tossing her a lopsided grin.



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#2
These Broomsticks visits were getting a little too frequent, but she always ran into the best people here, between Marlena and Mr. Grimstone, she certainly couldn't complain of the company. Between here and the Augurey, she had no shortage of friendly faces and companionship if she wanted it.

Tonight was just a quick bite to eat before heading home to crash for hopefully at least ten solid hours. She had been at the same labor for the last near twenty-four hours and she was exhausted. It hadn't been easy for this first-time mother, but eventually they had gotten there and a healthy baby girl had joined the family. Otherwise this drink would be of an entirely different variety. Win hadn't been hopeful at the lowest point, without the labor progressing to where it should have and the delivery would take a while to recover from, but Win hoped both mother and daughter would be alright. She would follow up in a day's time on both to check on their recovery.

With a warm mug of mulled cider in her hands atop the bar, Winnie waited for her dinner with heavy-lidded eyes. She was hardly awake on the stool, but she had missed supper at the boarding house and she hungrier than she was tired at this point. It wouldn't last long though. Of course this was how Gus found her; her other favorite ginger Gus, not Robins, but this time the long-lost face of Lissington. "Gus-Gus!" She chirped, the familiar face of her old school friend a welcome sight in the pub.

"Look at you!" She smiled broadly, leaning in to smack an enthusiastic peck on his cheek. "What brings you back to Hogsmeade? Tired of traveling the world already?" Winnie would have loved to travel herself, but there was no way that would ever be possible for her.


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#3
A laugh escaped him as he took a seat next to Winnie, his grin widening as she smacked a kiss against his cheek. Gus couldn’t help but to sheepishly rub the back of his neck of his neck at her question; he’d never tire of traveling. He just needed a break. “Ay, woke up one morning a few months back and decided I was ready to come home.” He shrugged nonchalantly. “I just guess I ah, forget to tell everyone I’d left behind in London I decided that, so, surprise?” He hadn’t told anyone he was coming home outside of his former boss when he’d given him a resignation notice; Gus had shocked his parents when he’d appeared at home around Christmas, announcing he was there to stay until the new term at Hogwarts started. He supposed it was nearly half expected with him - jump first, ask questions later.

“I’m actually the Defence Against the Darks Arts professor at Hogwarts now. Some days I think I’d rather take on a dragon than some of the seventh years.” Laughing quietly, he flagged down the bartender to order a pumpkin juice. A decade later he still wasn’t a big drinker, although he wasn’t convinced the job wouldn’t turn him into one. While he waited for the drink, he laid his head against her shoulder before he sighed softly. “Once summer hits I promise to visit you nearly every day, or until Hogsmeade Hospital bans me. I missed ya Win.”

The pumpkin juice appeared in front of him and Gus sat up from leaning against her; he took a sip. “Anything new? Anyone new?” He waggled his eyebrows at her for good measure before he smirked into his drink. He really had missed her.




#4
"Well I, for one, am thrilled to see you." As she was sure was everyone else he hadn't seen in a while. It was hard not like Gus Lissington. The news that he was teaching at Hogwarts was quite another thing entirely!

"That's a switch! You have my niece and nephew then, Edison is a sixth year and Anne a first year." That was quite the change. He certainly had the worldly experience, but teaching was not for the faint of heart. "The first is easy and has lofty ambitions, the latter, well, good luck with her, she's as strong-willed as I am." She winked at him, smile a little far too knowing to be comforting.

"You know I could never be sick of you." It was true too, he was far too amiable and comfortable to be around for anything else. "And you know I do not kiss and tell." Her smile grew into a grin and she hid it in her drink. "But I am well taken care of, if you must know." She had her usual paramours she could call on if necessary, but she had struck up a little something with someone new recently. It was nothing really, an upper class gent looking for a little fun, which is exactly what Winnie could provide, so it was working out alright. "I could ask the same of you, ready to settle down now that you've come home?"


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#5
“A switch indeed,” He agreed with a quiet laugh, nodding as she named her family. “Those first years are something else. Terrifying. I’ll be sure to pick on Miss Anne though, just for you.” She winked at him and he just shook his head as he chuckled quietly.  If her family was just as strong-willed as Winnie was, well, Gus certainly had his hands full. She’d always been his best friend and he was glad to see she hadn’t changed much at all. He wrapped his fingers around the glass in front of him.

He couldn’t help but tilt his head back and laugh at her comment. She’d always been good at keeping secrets, and for that Gus would always be grateful for. Not many people knew of his preferences and he’d be damned to not keep it that way. “Well I’m glad to hear it. If someone deserves to be happy, it’s you. Though if you find you’re not well taken care of one day say the word and I’ll curse ‘em. Got a bunch up my sleeve.” Gus grinned and shrugged; they both knew he was all bark and no bite.

“Nope.” He popped the ‘p’ as he answered, then he shook his head. Settling down wasn’t in the cards for him - he couldn’t make a Mrs. Lissington happy, and well, any kids that resulted from the marriage certainly wouldn’t be his. He loathed the idea of someone stepping out on him when he couldn’t make them any happy in that regard. “I ah… forget that a certain someone worked at Hogwarts, and Winnie… when we locked eyes again I just knew I hadn’t fallen out of love yet. Ten bloody years and I’d follow him to the end of the Earth if he asked it of me.”

Basil Foxwood had been a whirlwind: his first real love, the only person he could never shake from his mind and the sole reason he had moved to Egypt instead of staying in London, using a portkey or apparating to work sites. Being told you’re incapable of love hurt. “But he won’t. And I’ll work on the whole… falling out of love thing I guess.” Gus took a deep drink of the pumpkin juice, suddenly wishing it was alcohol. That would numb the mind, although tonight he was focusing just on Winnie.


The following 1 user Likes Gus Lissington's post:
   Basil Foxwood

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#6
Winnie nodded along as Gus talked about the school. She could never do it, teaching, she enjoyed babies, infants, but other than that, she was hardly considered maternal. She loved her nieces and nephews, obviously, but she doted upon them from a distance, and that was pretty much that. Plus they were all older now.

She could however, understand better the notion of having someone you cared for being just out of reach. "Oh darling, I am sorry." She put a hand on his arm and gave a gentle squeeze. She knew well of his connection with Mr. Foxwood, how impossible it seemed and she felt for him. His station in life and the preferences he had did not mix. She at least had the freedom of the working class to cover her escapades. Her time was not nearly as closely watched as those like Gus.

"A shallow consolation I'm sure, but if you ever find you need yourself some... cover, I would make a most excellent wife." She teased, evident by the exaggerated waggle of her eyebrows. Winnie was kidding, she hadn't any intention to marry, not after her falling out with Dory, but she could think of worse places to find herself, in a comfortable arrangement with Gus.

The following 1 user Likes Bronwyn Moony's post:
   Dorian Fisk

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#7
When Winnie squeezed his arm, Gus turned to her with a smile on his face. Then, he couldn’t help but laugh at her comment and the waggle of her eyebrows; marriage had crossed his mind several times over, although not as Winnie as his wife. He leaned forward and very gently bopped her on the tip of her nose with his finger. “You would make the most excellent wife indeed. Bronwyn Lissington. Bronwyn Moony-Lissington. Now that’s a mouthful.” Gus paused for a moment before he leaned in closer to her, a shit-eating grin stealing across his face. “ But I couldn’t steal you away from whoever is treating you right. Unless of course you say the word, and then I’ll drop down to one knee right in front of ya and make ‘im jealous.”

It was a sheer coincidence that he actually had a ring on him; he’d been meandering around Hogsmeade the day before, and had eventually winded up in Dervish & Burkes where the clerk had sweet talked him into purchasing a ring for a woman in his life. While it was clear he didn’t have one, he figured he’d use it as a gift for his sister - a please don’t kill me for ignoring you and just showing up out of the blue, gift. The clerk had promised it was also enchanted, and despite no longer being a curse breaker, figured he should at least figure out what enchantments were on it before he actually gave it away. Fig would kill her brother if Gus gifted her with a cursed ring.

The redhead dug around in his pocket until he felt the cool metal before he tugged it free. “It’s for Fig,” He explained, before he hurriedly added, “not that I was planning on proposing to my sister. Gross. That’s weird.”




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#8
Winnie laughed at his combination of their names. She had been mostly kidding; the proposal not entirely unlike one she and Dory had joked about in the past, but in this case, she would certainly be free to carry on with her lifestyle, for the most part, just simply in the comfort of a middle class home. She was sure Gus wasn't all that interested in that however.

She almost made the quip about her new friend being already married, but though she knew Gus didn't have a problem with her lifestyle either, she wasn't sure how he would react to her being an actual mistress. "Well, in any manner, it's an excellent back up plan." She mused aloud with a chuckle.

"Oh goodness, Gus." What were the chances he actually had a ring on him! "Are you sure about that wedding thing? That's beautiful!" Winnie was not typically one to get hung up on things like jewelry, it wasn't like she owned anything beyond the simple chain and pendant that hung on her neck that once belonged to her mother. "Weird, true, but I'm sure she'll love it."


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#9

“I’ll always be your backup plan,” He said with a laugh and a wink. Having her as a wife would be better than having someone who expected anything of it. Hell, he’d even encourage her to step out on him, although preferably discreetly so they didn’t have to explain themselves to anyone. Of course that was end of the line when both of them didn’t have any options left, but there wasn’t much Gus wouldn’t do for Winnie. It wasn't as if he could ever proposal to Basil, anyway. The thought of him as a wife amused him, and Gus' lips curved into a regaled smile.

He scratched at the back of his and grinned at her. He wasn't a big jewelry guy either - he was a collector of shiny objects though, and the trinkets from the past decade were getting a little out of hand. “I’m positive. But here. Why don’t you keep it?” Gus rolled the ring in his fingers before he placed it in the palm of his hand, holding it out to Winnie. Fig wouldn’t miss something she didn’t know was coming and Gus would be saved from having her throw it straight back at his face. “And if you’re ever in need of a fake husband or marriage or whatever, you can use it.” It wasn’t the worst option. It wasn't formal and never would be.

Forever a rambler, Gus couldn’t help but laugh quietly as he shook his head. The whole thought was absurd. “Even better. I can cast a protean charm on it, so if you actually need me, I can come running.” And at the same time make sure the damn thing wasn’t cursed. (Wouldn’t that be his luck?)



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#10
Winnie knew they were just lightheartedly teasing one another, but if she was ever in need of a husband, for whatever reason, Gus would make an excellent choice. And now if the need ever did arise, he wouldn't be completely blindsided by the request either.

The next thing she knew, he was offering her the ring and her eyes went wide as she stared at him in disbelief. They had been kidding... "I couldn't," She breathed out, waving her hands in front of her as if the motion would ward off the possibility. "Don't be silly." Win protested further. "It's really sweet of you, but you should give it to your sister." What was she, a working class midwife, going to do with a ring like that?

The idea of the charm on it, though likely wholly unnecessary, was actually the appealing part. Again, not that Winnie had ever thought she'd truly need Gus in an emergency, she was a woman who lived alone after all and he was quite skilled in a wide variety of areas.


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#11
Winnie seemed almost put off of the idea of taking the ring, and Gus laughed quietly as he continued to hold the ring out to her. “Please, Win? I’m skeeved out now by the idea of people thinking I proposed to my sister and it’ll sit in a box if you don’t take it.” A little guilt tripping never hurt anyone, and honestly as long as she took it, the ring would be out of his hair. Out of sight, out of mind. Isn’t that how the saying went?

At least it wasn’t him she was rejecting, although he could understand if she did. Gus thought about dropping to one knee and making a big spectacle in the middle of the pub but he figured she’d hate that, and he really couldn’t afford to lose the friendship he just started to rekindle. Winnie Moony would always hold a special place in his heart.

That was it. Forget Fig - she’d be angry at him even if he brought her the entire world, and honestly, he deserved her anger. Right now he was going to focus on making sure Winnie knew how sorry he was and how much he cared for him. “Consider it… I’m sorry for never writing and being a shitty friend, but I’d like to come back into your life, full time gift.” Gus tried again with a grin as he batted his eyes at her for good measure. He didn’t even have to enchant it, unless she wanted it. Gus would come running if she ever called.



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#12
Winnie had to chuckle at his reasoning. The logical choice was to return the ring and get his money back, but he seemed quite adamant about her having it. She was well aware he would probably never truly need it to propose to anyone, unless he decided to find himself another woman for a cover up marriage.

Eyeing him curiously, she was out of reasons to say no, really. "I will hold onto it for you," She agreed, thinking that if, for whatever reason, he needed it back or decided to do something else with it, she would certainly give it back to him. "However, you don't need to apologize for doing something for yourself that made you happy. I should think you would know better than to think I thought any less of you for it." She quirked an eyebrow at him.

"I do like the idea of your charm though, if I cannot have you around all of the time, I can at least pester you if needed." She teased. That was certainly useful for a woman living by herself. Win rather thought that his being at Hogwarts might be a bit of a hindrance, but it was better than nothing.


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#13
Gus couldn’t help but grin at her when she finally agreed to take the ring. There wasn’t any reason why she absolutely needed to have it, and had she declined again, he would have awkwardly wandered around with a useless ring in his pocket for the rest of eternity. Maybe he would have eventually pawned it or bet it or, the most likely option, lost it.

Now, at least, it would be put to good use. “Okay, okay. I won’t apologize for doing something that made me happy and I have zero regrets about doing, and would absolutely do it again in a heartbeat if given the choice.” He held up his hands in surrender, although his grin widened. It was much easier to step back into his friendships than he’d thought it’d be, and while grateful, he wouldn’t voice that to her.

Leaning forward, Gus pressed a quick, chaste kiss against Winnie’s cheek. “Never a bother, my dear Winnie. This summer I’ll be… somewhere close to you. Not sure where yet, but certainly not at Hogwarts. I think I have a roommate, some quidditch kid, but we’ll see how that goes." He shrugged. "You’ll have me all summer, all the time.” Well, at least on the days he wasn’t bugging Mason because that was bound to happen too. “ And whenever you need me, I will come running. I guess I just need something else to enchant to attach to the ring.” While he didn’t tend to wear anything everyday like a piece of jewelry, he’d make an exception for Winnie.




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#14
Pleased by his reaction, Winnie grinned as he pressed the kiss to her cheek. "Oh, isn't that delightful. You'll be so sick of my that you'll be ready to head back to school in September." She teased easily, thinking that it would be nice to have friends around again she could thrust her presence upon them in rotation. She saw... Gus, her other Gus, fairly often and she and Miss Scamander were... well testing the waters to say the least, but having another place to add into her rotation, especially with the way things were with Dory at the moment, would be refreshing.

"Whenever you figure it out, no rush. I doubt I'm allowed to whisk you away from Hogwarts anyway." Summer would be good. Winnie was pretty sure she would have to wear it on a necklace as the nature of her work was pretty... messy and her hands were her best tool. "I'm glad you're home." It was nice to have somebody who understood her, truly understood her, around again. Gus and Dory were really the only ones who knew every aspect of her personality and her history, which she desperately needed every now and then.


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