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Welcome to Charming, the year is now 1894. It’s time to join us and immerse yourself in scandal and drama interlaced with magic both light and dark.

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Queen Victoria was known for putting jackets and dresses on her pups, causing clothing for dogs to become so popular that fashion houses for just dog clothes started popping up all over Paris. — Fox
It would be easy to assume that Evangeline came to the Lady Morgana only to pick fights. That wasn't true at all. They also had very good biscuits.
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When September Ends
#1
September 30th, 1893 — Rowle House, Wellingtonshire, Hogsmeade

Robert Rowle lacked his sister's gift of prediction. This was a blessing, of course: had he shared it, he may have lost even more of himself to their father's transgression. Even so, he had known what the letter would say before it was even in his hands. Someone in the room, Sibylla if he recalled correctly, had asked if He was dead, but Robin had known there could be no such luck.

His hands had remained remarkably steady as he accepted the missive, withdrawing from an envelope the words inked in the nurse's precise hand.

His father had not died.

Indeed, Algernon Rowle was awake.

Philip would be livid.

Miranda would be hysterical.

Robert was resigned.

He departed the house quickly, every bit the image of the dutiful son racing to his beloved father's bedside. Not trusting himself to apparate, Robin instead stepped into the large hearth in the entry hall of the Bath house before stepping out in Wellingtonshire. He barked out the butler's name by way of announcing himself before stalling at the base of the stairs. What state would Father be in? Did Robin really wish to see the man?

(Should they have killed him after all?)

Somehow, his legs managed to carry him up the stairs while his mind was otherwise occupied, but now Robin stood outside his father's door, ajar, as if on the edge of a cliff with nothing but disaster awaiting him below.

After a long moment, Robin stepped inside the room.

(A tomb.)

"Father?"
Algernon Rowle


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   Seraphina Bythesea
#2
The second day was much the same as the first day, though Algernon had regained just enough of his senses to be frustrated. He found that he could move, though it took a great deal of effort and energy--something he seemed in very short supply--and he couldn't sit up, making him feel immensely, infuriatingly useless. It had been less than twenty-four hours, and he was already sure that he couldn't live like this for long, no matter how much that woman, the nurse, told him that he needed to take it easy. Algernon Rowle had never "taken it easy" in his life.

(Which, probably, was how he got in this situation in the first place.)

Mostly, he'd slept--because he was exhausted. Because there was little else to occupy him. He'd had time enough to wonder where his family was--he'd been unconscious for some time, to his understanding, but he'd expected someone to be here. Miranda, if no one else. He assumed Mrs. Banges knew to notify his children, even if he couldn't rise from his bed to verify the woman's competency for himself.

So, when the bedroom door opened and Robert appeared in the doorway, Algernon sighed. It's about time, he thought, but, as he still couldn't quite speak, he didn't do more than move his head to the side and stare pointedly at his oldest son.


#3
Unnerving was certainly a word that had been used to describe his father in the past, but as he met the man's gaze now, it rushed to the forefront of Robin's mind. There was too much in Algernon's eyes, too much will.

(Perhaps Philip had been right, but it was too late now.)

Robert waited a beat before moving fully into the room, placing himself awkwardly in the seat by the bed. It creaked slightly, antique that it was, but accepted him almost as reluctantly as he was to face a father that was... whatever the wizard was now.

It was a strange thing, to have one's father suffer a stroke. For weeks, there had been no certainty as to what sort of man would emerge from the coma—if he emerged at all. Under normal, functional family circumstances, Robert supposed, "alive and well" would have been ideal. "Dead and thus not well" had been Philip's vote, of course, and sitting here now, Robin had to admit, it would have brought with it a sort of finality.

He could not muster the venom of his siblings towards the man before him, that much he knew for certain. Oh, he would always hate Algernon for the life he had stolen from him, but whether it was because he had, arguably, lived the most before the change or because he was simply softer than his brothers or, indeed, his sisters, he saw his father's state differently than he might have otherwise. "There but unable to Be". It was a looming threat, but also, knowing how much his father would hate it, Robin felt for the man.

Better for all involved, he thought, if Algernon had died of the stroke. But now... there was simply whatever this would prove to be.

"It is the thirtieth of September, in case they did not tell you," he offered lamely. "Forsythia, Philippa, and Young Algy all have gone to Hogwarts; I believe they are doing well. As is the family at large," Robert added quickly. "I have, of course, kept in touch with your man of buisness to ensure all holdings are performing as they should. Fortunately, none of the London properties were damaged in the dragon attack, and the shipping company used is not one in which we were invested."
Algernon Rowle


#4
Good. That was all good. Algernon didn't relax, exactly, but he hummed approvingly nonetheless. It was the best he could afford to do at the moment, in his current state.

Still, it wasn't all that he wished to know. Where were the rest of his children? Surely, with his being out for so long, there ought to be more information to be had? Frustratingly, Algernon couldn't make the appropriate questions form on his lips. What he had to settle for was staring at his son expectantly. It was... less than ideal. It had been a very long time since Algernon had had to put much--if any--effort into finding out information from his children. It had not occurred to him that his ability to speak would be a hindrance here.


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   Robert Rowle
#5
...not yet regained his range of speech. Yes, that was what the letter had said. That knowledge did not make Robin feel any less uncomfortable under his father's expectant gaze. Indeed, a lesser man might have begun to squirm like a schoolboy; Robin, though, managed to restrict himself to simply clearing his throat uncomfortably.

What his father wanted, the wizard suspected, was confirmation that each of his children was still under the yoke of his spellcraft, that the well-oiled machine he had turned them into was still ticking away presicely as he left them. Of course, Robin could say no such thing—Father's belief in their ignorance was crucial, second in importance only to his belief in their continued entrapment. Absolutely not on the list of things to share were Philip's inclination towards murder, Miranda's miraculous recovery, the fact that Seraphina had a personality now, and Edwin's loss of the goblin language.

"I believe, of the family, only Alby suffered any harm during the dragon incident, but is expected to make a complete recovery," he continued. "My own department was greatly involved with the efforts surrounding containment, though Philip and Edwin practically got a vacation as a result of the whole ordeal." Robin chuckled lamely.
Algernon Rowle


#6
On the one hand, this was more good news. His family was well, despite the difficulties happening out in the world at the moment. Good. Except...

If Philip and Edwin practically got a vacation out of it than why hadn't Algernon seen them? He narrowed his eyes at his eldest child, wishing fervently that he could simply ask, but that was a bit too complicated for him at the moment.


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   Robert Rowle
#7
Robin could feel the squeeze in his chest, the tightness that began to form when he was Concerned. It was a feeling he'd had since he was a boy, whenever he did something—or thought he might do something—that would vex his father. It had gone away when his control over his own body and mind had likewise been stripped, but unlike the rest, its return was not at all welcome.

What did Father want? His expression was, at best, expectant; at worst, downright critical. Not only was Robin navigating the other man's expectations but also trying to act as though still under his father's thrall. He was bound to slip up.

"I wish that there was more to report," he offered lamely. "Miranda, as you've no doubt been told, has retired to the Castle; your... incapacitation, I think, was very hard on her." This was true, though not in the way it would have been in most father-daughter relationships. None of the children had taken the revelation well, but Mira had been particularly hard hit. "Perhaps once you are more mobile, you would like to follow as well. No doubt the mountain air would be preferable to the closeness of Hogsmeade. Or perhaps stay in Bath for a spell, take the waters."
Algernon Rowle


#8
Yes, that... made some semblance of sense, Algernon supposed. He sighed--rather loudly, considering, given his limited means of otherwise communicating. The trouble was, he was so used to having careful control over every aspect of his life that having none now was disorienting at best.

He nodded at Robert. All right. If thatwas all the news to be had, that was fine. For now. He would recover. And then things would be clearer because he could keep track for himself. Or at the very least voice the questions that he had.



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