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Welcome to Charming, the year is now 1891. 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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During the Victorian era, knitting became a staple of a well-bred woman. Queen Victoria is even reported to have been a fan of knitting herself. It was during this time that knitting wasn’t just restricted to plain yarn fabrics, but changed to involve bead and lace knitting. — Fallin
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A gown for a life
#17
It was beginning to dawn on her that perhaps Mr. Prewett was as lost as she was when it came to the resort, but she said nothing as they made their way through the crowd and out the doorway, descending a staircase and ending up where they had come in that evening. Surely there had to be staff quarters around here somewhere. Malou scanned the hall for additional doors and spotted one that didn't seem grand at all. "Over here." She led them blindly to the door, hoping they'd at least run into a staff member who might be able to direct them where to go. She opened the door and stepped into a darkened parlor. Definitely not where she had intended, but there was another door on the otherside and away from the party seemed the right way to go to find service quarters.

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An amazing MJ set
#18
The only thing that looked vaguely familiar to him was the point before the parlor. As soon as they stepped inside, the door shut behind them and they were plunged into darkness. From what he knew about Muggles, if they were magic-less, he and Miss Skovgaard would have been stuck. Luckily, Faustus mused, they were not. After muttering a few words under his breath, a small crackling ball of fire appeared in his palm, and he held his hand aloft to throw their surroundings into further relief.

They could easily see the door on the other side of the room. Luckily, this one seemed to have remained fairly untouched by the hurricane blowing outside. Faustus wasn't willing to wait around to find out though, and he motioned Miss Skovgaard forward. "It appears the hurricane's wreaking its fair share of havoc this evening," he said quietly as they walked forward to the door.

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#19
The flame that Mr. Prewett summoned lit the room enough to easily navigate around the chairs and tables creating an easier route to the door. Malou didn't hesitate she started forward with the same purposeful strides she had in the hospital but had never demonstrated in a ballroom. She was intent on her mission enough to feel less self conscious and shy around Mr. Prewett. "I don't understand why it would affect apparation though." She mused, her quiet voice loud in the space. The only other sound in the parlor was the windows rattling with the wind.

She was halfway across the room when window closest to them broke. Glass shattered and something flew in at them, Malou froze, her eyes wide as the wind tore through the room, pushing chairs their way and sending debris straight toward them. Straight at Mr. Prewett. "Watch-" Malou started but her words would be too late and so she threw herself against Mr. Prewett in hopes of knocking him out of the way.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#20
Their footsteps echoed as they walked, which paired with the orange light from the flames in Faustus' hand and the distant howling of the wind outside, made for a rather eerie impression. Her question hung between them as Faustus thought - they'd had apparition problems hit the Ministry before, but the last time that a weather event caused it was quite some time ago. "Maybe —"

Faustus didn't have time to finish his sentence before glass exploded to the side of them and a gust of wind threw the entire room into chaos. The flames in his hand went out immediately. In the time it took for his eyes to re-adjust to the light, there was a crash and Faustus felt something soft collide with him. It wouldn't have been much to withstand had he not taken a step back and gotten his legs taken out from underneath him by an obliging overturned chair. With a shout of surprise, Faustus fell backward, instinctively grabbing her and pulling her to him, twisting to hopefully take the brunt of the fall.

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#21
It all happened so quick that Malou only took in segments of it. The warmth and solid mass of his body as she collided with him, his arm wrapping around her waist, landing on his chest, the whoosh of something above their heads, and above all the constant roar of the wind. They had not fallen the direction she had expected, going backward instead of to the side and it took her a moment to figure out where they had ended up. Somehow they had twisted as they fell. Mr. Prewett had pulled her in to his chest, his arm pinned beneath her. The flame gone it was almost pitch black but she could make out his face, automatically as she began to adjust to the darkness she began to inspect him for injury. Her eyes large in fear and shock. Was he alright, had it missed him? Unable to fully see in the darkness Malou raised a hand to check his face and head for injury.."Are you alright?" Her soft voice fought the wind to be heard. She hadn't even noticed that she was shaking.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#22
The fall had caused his ribs and elbow to explode with pain. Hissing, Faustus struggled to see what had just darted over them. Once he saw, he paled slightly: it was a bench from outside, one that he and countless other patrons of the Resort had sat on at one point or another. The bench was nowhere near usable now, as it had embedded itself into the wall opposite them. He quickly looked down at Miss Skovgaard, his eyes wide and already searching her for any sign of injury.

For the second time that night, he saw his own emotions reflected back at him. Her own eyes were large and slightly stunned; presumably at what had just happened, though Faustus had his own reasons to not trust his racing thoughts just now. Through the shock and over the wind, he managed to hear her and he nodded wordlessly as her hand rested gently on the side of his cheek.

That one touch brought him back enough to realize exactly what a compromising position they were in, and he caught her hand in his own. "Please —" He started, though lost the words on his tongue.

"Are - are you alright?" He began again, breathing hard to keep his voice steady. Any attempt to survey her for injuries was made futile by the fact that she was already coated in Mr. Thompsett's blood —

Mr. Thompsett. Yes, that's what they were doing here - what they were in search of for him. He rose his gaze back to her own, blinking as he was brought back to their purpose. He quickly averted his gaze. “Forgive me.” He said quietly, drawing back to give her room, regardless of the fact that they were both entangled on the floor in near darkness. Even someone walking by wouldn’t have seen them unless they were somehow unaffected by the hurricane blowing outside.

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#23
She could see his eyes, the whites wide in the dark, the shock and.... there was something there but she had no idea what. The warmth of his palm captured her's as she felt across his face, checking for the wet warmth of tell tail blood. Please...stop." Malou's fingers curled into themselves and a deep flush spread over her cheeks as she realized just how close they were. If they hadn't been tangled on the floor and he had been her patient at the hospital she would have gently scolded him, but they weren't there. They were tangled on the floor of a dark room. Besides, she would have felt better if she could see his injuries and not just feel for them. Quite honestly even him answering her question might not have put her at ease. Men enough had tried to be cavalier about their conditions in front of her, it wouldn't have surprised Malou if he was one.

Mr. Prewett was worried about her? She blinked for a moment in surprise, hardly anyone ever worried about her, but she could hear the concern plan as day in his voice. She might have been able to chalk it up as gallentry had it not been for that tone, that break in his words. "Yes." She replied automatically. Although she really hadn't thought about it. Her hip felt bruised and her ankle twinged a bit, overall she was much less worried about herself.

His next words only made Malou feel hotter, realize the tangle of legs, her chest pressed against his, his arm still holding her - but only, she realized, because she had landed on it. Cheeks hot, Malou made use of the small space he had moved to push herself to sitting and then clumsily to her knees. "Is your arm alright?" She asked as she started to stand up. The wind through the window seemed to be trying to push her back down and her skirts were tangling around her. She looked around for something to pull herself up on. She may not be the typically lady, but she really didn't relish trying to crawl across the room to the door.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#24
The immediacy with which she responded gave Faustus pause. He had to wonder if her response was due to the fact that she'd been used to giving the same response repeatedly despite whatever the contrary might have been. Or, perhaps it was more than that and she had been insulted by the manner in which they'd ended up on the floor. After all, he had so rudely grabbed her and taken her down with him.

With this potential realization, Faustus also realized that his hand had been on the small of her back. He immediately removed it as she slid out of his arms and instead, closed it involuntarily as they widened the gap between them. Faustus gingerly rotated his shoulder and flexed his arm out to test its mobility before responding, "Yes, it's alright."

With a snap of his fingers, the flames appeared in Faustus' hand once more, illuminating them and their surroundings. He seemed to be able to stand up more easily than she, though it was hardly a wonder why - she seemed to be weighed down significantly by the combination of the wind as well as her blood-soaked dress. And yet despite this rather alarming appearance, he found himself thinking, as he automatically reached out to take her hand and help her up...she still looked quite lovely.

"Here." He said, stepping to the side in order to shield her from taking the brunt of the wind that was howling through the now-broken window. "Are you able to walk?" His eyes moved down to the hem of her dress, brows furrowed as he wondered if in her attempt to push him out of the way she'd sustained injuries of her own.

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#25
The warm glow of the flame in Mr. Prewett's hand covered them. She could see leaves, branches, shattered glass, around them. A fallen chair was next to them and beyond that, Malou swallowed in realization, was a bench - from outside. She didn't want to think of what would have happened if it had hit Mr. Prewett. But the other thing she was sure it illuminated was her own furiously warm cheeks, wind blown hair, and bloodied dress. Perhaps the dark had been a blessing afterall.

Without seeming to have too much issue, Mr. Prewett managed to stand upright and despite her own discomfort Malou found her eyes glancing over him for any injury. She had felt immediate relief that is arm had been alright but still the light was what had helped the most. A knot in her stomach slowly unclenched.

As he stepped between her and the wind he offered her his hand. She took it gratefully, not able to meet his gaze. "Yes." Against the murmur was automatic. If only she could untangle her skirts, she thought in annoyance, wishing for her healer's robes. All these layers were a nuisance. Finally managing to unwrap the layers of fabric tangled around her ankles, Malou placed her weight onto her foot to stand up. Pain shot up from her ankle and she gritted her teeth as she allowed him to help her up. Please, God, just let her be able to walk to the door. She prayed. But one step forward and her ankle gave out sending her toward the floor again.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#26
Faustus tensed the arm holding onto her hand as she momentarily struggled with her skirts. During this, he thought to redirect his gaze about them as opposed to staring rudely. It looked as if the outdoors had been brought to them - the wind was still howling loud as ever, swirling leaves and branches this way and that throughout the room. What a mess, he thought, as he turned back to see how Miss Skovgaard was fairing.

Immediately, she collapsed again and Faustus moved forwards closing the gap between them. This time, instead of extinguishing, the fire in his hand hovered lazily in the air as he stooped to hold onto her to prevent her from hitting the floor. "Are you hurt?" He demanded, moving to lower her onto the floor - it was no good to try and make her stand when she clearly had trouble doing so.

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#27
Steady hands caught her and gently lowered her to the ground, the complete opposite of what seemed to be happening around them. "Thank you." This time she was pretty sure the wind took her words entirely.

His voice was rough, not a kind enquiry but a sharply worried one. The attention only made her cheeks grow even warmer and she ducked her head, fixing her gaze to them hem of her skirts. She was going to have to check it, she knew this, but the thought of lifting her skirts in his sight even to her ankle brought back the feeling of having been tangled with him so recently. Lord, what was she going to do?

Steeling herself, Malou took a breath and rolled her ankle around, not as good as putting pressure on it but better than nothing. Each movement hurt, but it didn't feel too serious. "Just a twisted ankle." She hoped. But her ankle was such a small thing compared to getting supplies to those back in the ballroom. "It's nothing. I'm sure." She wasn't, but her needs were so much smaller when faced with patients like Mr. Thompsett. "I - we, need to keep moving." Besides, who knew how much longer the other windows in the room would last.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#28
His eyes followed her gaze to the hem of her skirts. Immediately, he could see her thought process - that if her ankle was hurt, it was likely that it needed tending to. Which meant seeing to her ankle in front of him. While being an Auror had slightly done away with Faustus' ability to be flustered by such things, he could still tell from Miss Skovgaard's expression that the thought of tending to her ankle in front of him was not something she felt comfortable with.

Wrestling with his urge to insist she see to it (even if he turned around) and the urgency of potions and supplies, Faustus searched her face yet again for some sign of uncertainty. It was a fruitless task, always - it wasn't as if he could force her to take care of her ankle. And so he nodded gravely at her instance before taking a step back to make sure she was balanced. "Very well," he replied, eyes still on her for a fraction of a second before he turned his attention to the door they'd been moving toward.

It could hardly be called a door anymore - it had come clean off its hinges and was discarded on the other side of the hall. At least it had become an archway and not another obstacle they had to get through. "I'm hoping it's just a little further past the hallway," Faustus mused, though the expression on his face spoke to the contrary.

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#29
It appeared that Mr. Prewett was wise enough not to argue. Not that she would have won an argument, but rather it spoke that his priorities in this matter aligned with her. With his job and the fact that he knew Mr. Thompsett perhaps this ought not to have surprised her, yet it did. So few seemed to have the same seriousness that she did.

Gratefully, Malou accepted his help as she stood up again, wincing in pain. But she remained on her feet, which was a blessing. She followed his look to the door - or rather archway before them, her eyes again widening with shock at the destruction.

At Mr. Prewett's words she turned, the truth was on his face. He didn't think they would find what they were looking for there. Well there was only one way to find out. Malou gritted her teeth and tried to step forward and wobbled. Embarassed she managed to squeak, "Might I have your arm?" It was perfectly respectable, she had had her share of men escort her on their arms (not droves, but the few sympathetic ones who had been pushed by their mothers to do so), and truthfully she was not sure if she could actually walk even the distance to the door. There was a greater cause, yes, but there was also great stupidity in hurting herself further.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#30
Turning back to Miss Skovgaard, Faustus observed how she faired - saw her determination to keep moving forward, but as he suspected, her ankle seemed to severely be hindering that process. His hands hovered in the air, prepared to catch her if she pitched forward again. His suspicion came to fruition when she started wobbling. Frankly he was grateful she'd asked - otherwise he'd have had to figure out how on earth to get her to accept some help, at least until she was able to take a few more steps. "Of course," He replied, his arm already in position as he kept his body the closer of the two to the broken window.

He tried to keep his pace slow enough for her, but time was not on their side. "Just let me know if you need to stop." Faustus added, moving forward towards the door. Beyond that, he could see down the hallway. To the right looked to be another way back to the ballroom, but to the left was something more promising. The door to the kitchens. He sighed. "I recognize that from when I caught Edelweiss and Mezereon trying to sneak into the kitchens last summer." The memory brought a grin to his face. How different a time it was now.

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#31
Just like that he was by her side, the small kindness of blocking the wind still there. Malou swallowed at the ease in which he had offered to help. Was it because of her? Or simply because he was the kind of man to do that? Better not to focus on that, she decided as she placed her hand on his arm and followed his slow steps through the room.

"Oh?" Malou wanted to look both at him and at the door to the kitchens. The kitchens were the second best place to finding the on site healer which was a good thing. But then his mention of the two others, in a tone most people used to discuss family intrigued her - and more importantly distracted her. A glance at her face and she saw a wide grin on her face. It made her want to grin right back at him. With a smile like that there had to be more to the story.

[Image: FLXUg8.png]
An amazing MJ set
#32
He gestured with his free hand to the tell-tale double doors at the end of the hallway, the grin still on his face. Through the faintly howling wind (thank Merlin the windows along the hallway seemed to be holding somewhat), Faustus could still hear his children bickering with each other, ducking behind this laundry cart and that in attempts to hide from him. This, he relayed to Miss Skovgaard, continuing on: "Edelweiss has always been the cleverer of the two, with Mezereon right behind her. Iris has always been the quieter of the lot, so she had elected to stay at the table." He explained, before resuming with the rest of the story and leading them slowly down the hallway.

Edelweiss had been the one to convince Mezereon that they could sneak into the kitchens and convince the cook to give them an early sampling of dessert. As Faustus had rounded the corner, he'd just spotted the tail of the ribbon on his eldest daughter's skirt disappear behind the laundry cart. When he'd feigned oblivion and turned around, they snuck into the kitchens. Well, Mezereon did. Edelweiss ended up trapped outside, and by the time Faustus had faced them again, Mezereon had — not knowing his full strength — attempted to dart back out to get his sister. Except Edelweiss was standing right in front of the door and she ended up sprawled on the ground having just been leveled by the swinging door, and by extension, her brother.

At this point in the story, Faustus had broken into a chuckle. Had their current circumstances been any less dire, he'd have broken into a full laugh. "Edelweiss had a bruise on her forehead for a week. Mezereon, bless him, felt so bad he insisted on waiting on Edelweiss until she felt better." At the mention of nursing people back to health, Faustus sobered a bit and cleared his throat. "Forgive me, Miss Skovgaard - under the circumstances, perhaps not the most appropriate story to tell." He turned back to her, the smile still in his eyes despite his apology.

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