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 Truth Be Told (Victoria)

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Hunter VanDerberg
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PostSubject: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Mon Jan 26, 2015 4:15 am

Today was kind of an important day. Sort of. Because today, Hunter was taking Aoife on one of their agreed six dates that had been included in their deal. The first one, actually. So it was kind of exciting, but not really. Because all that they would do was drink a lot of butterbeer and talk, like they always had in the past. Or, maybe if he could swing it, they would drink a lot of firewhiskey, and then Aoife would relax a bit and not be so freaked out about the whole being his girlfriend thing, and would actually let him near her. Maybe. Of course, he was allowed to go near her - she had to let him, or Little Shit would be facing a slightly uncomfortable fate. But Hunter had been actually doing his best to give her enough personal space. Like maybe, if he showed her how patient he was, she would decide on her own to come to him. Though, he was just kidding himself thinking that, and part of him knew it.

Anyway, he had to wait for Aoife to be done with work. With nothing better to do, he'd headed to Hogsmeade early, making his way into the Three Broomsticks. He'd just get a firewhiskey at the bar while he waited for her. It was pretty crowded when he entered, being a weekend and all, and his eyes instantly scanned the crowd for any of his friends. At first, he didn't see any, but they soon landed on a familiar Ravenclaw. Victoria. Rather than the typical grin and smart-ass greeting he would give her, he frowned, hesitating. Because Hunter needed to talk to Victoria. About something serious. Particularly, Agnes. Agnes didn't have many friends. But he knew that aside from him, Victoria was her closest. Ever since Agnes had flipped shit on him the other day, he knew something was wrong. He'd suspected that something was wrong before, but now he knew that something was really wrong. Agnes had never shut down like this before, and she hadn't attacked him so badly since that first day on the train.

And maybe, Victoria knew what it was. He'd been meaning to talk to her, but hadn't had the chance to catch her. But now he could. She was sitting with some of her friends, but that was hardly a problem. He was Hunter, after all. He had no problem rudely interrupting their conversation. Deciding it was best to just act like himself, he headed toward her table, calling out to her as he passed it. "Come on, Campero, I'll buy you a drink!" he shouted over the noise of the pub, not waiting for her answer before heading to the bar. "Two firewhiskeys," he ordered, before Victoria could reach him. It wasn't that easy to order a firewhiskey for someone underage when they were standing right beside you. Luckily, the timing turned out alright, and he avoided being sent to Azkaban or some shit. That would suck.

"Here," he said as she joined him, offering her a grin that didn't quite reach his eyes. "You're welcome. Having fun?" Okay, now how to even ask. This wouldn't be so hard, but Hunter and Agnes, a year later, were still not publicly friends. They talked. They had sex. But they did not interact in public. Nobody knew that they had anything but a bored disinterest with each other. And nobody would ever suspect Hunter of actually caring about Agnes Beaumont. And Victoria was smart - he'd dated Seren for long enough in the past that he knew you didn't just get shit past a Ravenclaw. Even if Victoria was one of the less studious ones. She was still smart. In the end, he ended up deciding to just, very partially, reveal the truth. Or he would, at least, if she asked. For now, he just asked what he needed to know. "Okay, listen, I actually needed to ask you something." Shit. This sucked. "You're friends with Agnes Beaumont, right?" he asked slowly, glancing around to make sure nobody else was listening. But it was so loud that nobody would hear them if they tried. "I just - I mean, is she okay?"

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:32 pm

Sitting on her bed, Victoria was surrounded by four giggly and chatty girls that were now spread out across her dorm room. The conversation that went on included complaints about the unevenness of their eyeliner, questions about the appropriateness of each outfit, remarks about their recent love interests and constant remainders that yes, that skirt should be shorter. She just knew that she was gonna regret agreeing to this fiasco in the first place. The Ravenclaw never participated in the tradition of girls night, a fact that her friends kept reminding her of constantly until she agreed to go simply out of guilt and annoyance. She just never saw the point of it. If she was going to spend hours on doing her make up and picking out her outfit just to look pretty for a few hours, why on earth would she want to spend that time with girls? It just didn't make sense. If she wanted to gossip all night she would stay in her room wearing her over-sized pajamas and fluffy slippers. Not this uncomfortable... well dress for the lack of a better word. 

After refusing to wear heels - oh hell no - but agreeing to ditch the old and white knitted scarf (well it that grey now) that she wears everywhere, they finally left the room and headed to Hogsmeade. The village was crawling with students who were trying to get away for the weekend and just forget about school. But Victoria couldn't relax. She kept twitching in her uncomfortable dress but was thankful that she had a long coat on which hid the state, or better yet lack, of her clothing. Yep, she was definitely going to regret this. After a small quarrel, the group decided to go to the Three Broomsticks, which was always a safe bet. The place was packed, like it was every weekend, but the girls miraculously managed to find an empty table. They ordered a round of butterbeer, which made her frown and regret her young age. Damn, what she wouldn't do for a firewhiskey right now. Especially if she was going to survive tonight. It's not that Victoria didn't like her friends. She, did of course! But when it was five of them at the same time... together... it was just a bit too much. 

The conversation quickly and unsurprisingly turned to boys. Victoria resisted the urge to facepalm herself when two of her friends attempted to rank all the boys in her year by hotness. And then consequently pair each of them off with one girl from the group. She grumbled when her name was mentioned, always finding a reason as to why that would never work. "I don't even know who that is", was her usual comment and her only contribution to this discussion. Only Ravenclaw girls would assign a number value to a every male in the castle and then divide then in a complex ranking system. Her attention was beginning to fade as her eyes were scanning the room. She noticed a lot of familiar faces around, but no one she actually knew. That was until she heard someone call out her last name. But the only person who would ever call her Campero was... Hunter of course. Her suspicions were shown valid as she know saw the Gryffindor boy asking, or more like demanding, that she had a drink with him at the bar.

After a few objections from her friends she left the table a little too eagerly, happy to be away for a while. Taking a seat next to Hunter, her eyes fell on the firewhiskey that offered her right off the bat. She didn't even have to ask. "I swear you are my Lord and Jesus savior right now", Victoria said with a grin before taking a large sip of her drink. How lovely it was to hear... nothing. Even just for a second. Silence always agreed with her more than most. "You're welcome. Having fun?" Did she just hallucinate those four words or did Hunter actually say that. She eyed him suspiciously and examined his whole body. Well he didn't seem anything differed to her. He just looked like the same git he always was. "Hey assface. What? No insult Vanderberg, no middle finger? Just a having fun? Do you have a fever?", she asked seriously, seeing how something was certainly wrong. And then when he mentioned Agnes it hit her. Of course, she should have assumed that people noticed she was behaving strangely. He smile slowly faded off her face and she cleared her throat. "Yeah, we are friends", she nodded. What the hell was she supposed to tell him? She would never betray Agnes' trust like that, but she had to tell him something. A convincing lie perhaps that would make him forget his suspicions and just move on. "She's... fine", the Ravenclaw answered awkwardly. Wonderful. Great job, Victoria, because that was really believable. "What's it to you anyway? I didn't know that you guys hang out or that you are the overly concerned type of friend either. "

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Tue Jan 27, 2015 12:37 am

Of course Victoria followed him. He'd given her firewhiskey enough times that she'd be stupid not to. His grin broadened a bit when she sat down next to him and thanked him a bit excessively for the drink he'd gotten her. "Yeah, well, Lord and Jesus savior might not be the most appropriate expression," he told her, laughing slightly. "Considering that I'm buying for minors and only just started actually paying for this shit a month ago." Before then, he'd just stolen it, which had been much more exhilarating. But saying so out loud in the middle of the pub from which he'd stolen wasn't the smartest idea at all. Instead, he glanced at Victoria now that she was sitting next to him, noting that she didn't look the same as always. "I've never seen you dress up before, Campero," he pointed out with a smirk. "Though, I have to be honest, if you're trying to pick up a guy, the coat is making you look a little too modest." In reality, he was just trying to figure out how she was wearing such a big coat inside the pub, which was incredibly warm from the large crowd of people mingling inside.

Okay, apparently, he wasn't trying hard enough to act normal. Because in between all of his thoughts, he'd forgotten to greet Victoria like he usually did. Strike one. So, deciding it was best to distract her some before launching straight into what he wanted to talk to her about, he raised the corner of his mouth in amusement and responded to her comment with two middle fingers, hoping the second one would make up for his forgetfulness in the beginning. "I guess I didn't really need to ask that, though," he said, taking the conversation into a random direction. "You were bored out of your mind. If you were trying to seem interested, you were doing a pretty bad job," he added. "So, where do I fall in the final count, anyway?" he asked with a grin, having caught enough of the table's conversation when he passed it to know what they were talking about. "If I'm not above Blake, I think your friends and I may need to have a chat," he continued good-naturedly. "Though, I wouldn't mind chatting with that blonde one. Don't think I've met her before, you'll have to introduce me. "

Hunter raised his glass to his lips to hide his amusement, but after waiting for Victoria's response, he laughed. "Nah, I'm only kidding. Blondes aren't really my thing." Not counting Ariel, who was stunning with any hair color. "And anyway, I have a date tonight," he told her, leaving it hanging as to who the date was with. He wasn't hiding the fact that he was dating Aoife, but he hadn't made it common knowledge either. Mostly for Aoife's sake, to give her some time to adjust to it on her own first. But then, Hunter turned the conversation, and unfortunately acting like a cocky bastard wouldn't get him anywhere when it came to what he really wanted to know. But maybe he'd thrown Victoria's suspicion off enough that she'd just tell him right off the bat. Then again, maybe she didn't know at all. That would be unfortunate, but it wouldn't be a complete waste, because Victoria was pretty badass, and he didn't mind hanging out with her. Aoife would probably be relieved and think she was staying, and then would still try to count it as a date.

But the moment he asked what he wanted to know, Victoria gave herself away. She really was a bad actress. She knew. And by the way she answered, he knew that he had been right. Whatever it was, wasn't good. He hadn't really expected Victoria to give it up so easily, but nobody could blame him for trying. He gave her an even look at her last words. He didn't seem like the overly concerned type of friend. "I'm the kind of friend who's concerned when I have a reason to be," he said steadily, but decided not to let the comment get to him. Because he had more important things to accomplish. Letting his half-glare fall, Hunter sighed in slight defeat and glanced around himself one more time, just to be sure nobody who mattered was within earshot. And then, leaning slightly closer to Victoria, he decided to tell her part of the truth.

"Agnes and I don't hang out," he said. "We... talk," he finally decided on. "Look, Victoria, I know it probably sounds crazy, but I wouldn't have made it through last year without her." He shouldn't have had to give any reason but that. It was almost unfair, really. Mention his brother, and everyone just gave in. Keeping his voice quiet, he continued. "But she's been avoiding me for weeks, and the other day when I tried to talk to her, she basically attacked me. So I know that there's something wrong - really wrong - and I know that you know what it is." His gaze met Victoria's eyes, and he hoped that he had a sincere look on his face. If not, he hoped it was dark enough that Victoria wouldn't know the difference. "I just want to help her," he said finally, taking another sip of his firewhiskey.

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Tue Jan 27, 2015 2:27 am

"I wouldn't call myself a minor", she said rolling her eyes, even though that was exactly what she was. But Victoria didn't let something so silly as age prevent her in enjoying her life. After all, the risk involved was totally worth it and this notion was only confirmed in her head as she took another sip of her Firewhiskey. "Oh!", Victoria said as if Hunter had revealed a huge secret of his. So that was how he always had a bottle of this or that around. His huge and secret stash was actually in a bar. Clever. But only because he had managed not to get himself caught. "What?", she asked absentmindedly as he mentioned something about her coat. And then she realized that she was still wearing it. No wonder she was sweating her ass off. She proceeded to weight her options. Stay in her coat, turn into a puddle and possibly get hypertermia. OR take it off and show her clothes, which was a shirt that was attempting to be a dress. Hell it wasn't even hers, one of her friends forced her to wear it. "Shut your mouth Hunter!", she snapped at him as she was in the middle of her deciding. Fuck it. So she was going to be half naked at a bar. So was every other girl in this place. She took off her coat and placed it on the empty chair next to her. At least she wasn't wearing heels.

Victoria grinned as Hunter responded with not one but two middle fingers. "That's a lot better", she said laughing. She was use to asshole Hunter. But nice Hunter was just weird and wrong. "Was I that obvious?", Victoria asked with a sigh. Great. She was bound to get a lecture from her friends about ditching them on girl night. And worse, ditching them for a guy. In girl world, that was the ultimate sin. Which means that she would probably have to replay them by going out on another girl's night. How lovely. But even worse than that was that Hunter had actually overheard their conversation. "Eh, you're somewhere in the middle I think", she responded with a chuckle, only guessing the truth. Because really she couldn't remember when her friends had mentioned Hunter, not that she was actually paying attention to the conversation or anything. "What? Blake is awesome. And not such a git like you. So yeah I would definitely put him above you", she said with a teasing smirk. Blake was one of her first actual friends when she transferred to Hogwarts so she had to defend his standing in the rank system. It was only right. But then Hunter mentioned her blonde friend at the table. Of course he did. "Her name is Sophie and she already knows that you're an asshole", she said rolling her eyes. She seemed to do that a lot when she was with Hunter. What she didn't say was that the blonde would probably go for Hunter if he tried anything. But he didn't need to know that. 

"You? Have a date?", she asked, not able to contain her laughter. "So are you telling me that moaning Murtle finally agreed to go on a date with you?" She was joking of course, but it was just so surprising. I mean she knew that plenty of girls had a crush on Hunter. And if one listened to the rumors going around school, he certainly wasn't the purity ring type of guy. Gossip traveled fast at Hogwarts. But a real, actual date? Like in the public and everything? That seemed pretty serious. And Hunter didn't struct her as a serious type either. "But really... who is this poor deranged creature? Do I know here? I she coming here?", Victoria asked letting her curiosity get the best of her. Now that Hunter had willingly volunteered this information, there was no way she wasn't going to pester him about it. She just had to know who it was.

"That's not what I meant", she said quickly shaking her head. Victoria was shit with keeping secrets and this was just proof of exactly that. Her words didn't help at all! They only made him more suspicious than before.  "Really?? You talk?", she asked raising her eyebrow at Hunter. Well that was rather unexpected. But how was this even possible? She had never seen Hunter and Agnes near each other, except maybe in class. Before she could respond with suspicion of her own, the Gryffindor used the full except of guilt on his disposal. Damn it, he was playing dirty. It wasn't fair at all. Victoria closed her eyes and tried to concentrate on Agnes. On the fact that she had trusted her with this secret for a reason. She couldn't just betray her trust, not when it came to something so serious as this. Why couldn't Hunter understand that? "Look I get it okay. I really do. But she is having a hard time right now. You should cut her some slack. We all should", Victoria said with a sigh. 

How long would Agnes be able to successfully keep her condition a secret? She wasn't sure, but eventually it will show. That was certain. It was only a matter of weeks when an over-sized sweater wouldn't be able to hide her growing belly. When the excuse of eating too much and being bloated will shatter. People will find out, they always do. But Victoria wanted to shield her friend from the judgment of everyone around them, for as long as possible. If she had to lie and make some things up then so be it. "I appreciate the fact that you want to help, I do. But... you can't. No one can help. It's too late now", she said with a sigh. Did she reveal too much? "Don't worry about Agnes. I won't leave her side, I promise. Even... especially after...Oh God I need a drink", Victoria said realizing that she had already said way too much. She grabbed her firewhiskey and swallowed it in one go.

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Tue Jan 27, 2015 3:41 am

"Yeah, I guess I never considered myself one either," he agreed, tipping his glass toward her before taking a drink. "Or, I did until last year. At which point I decided that I deserved a drink way more than any of the alcoholics in this place. I wasn't about to let some stupid formality stop me - and it wasn't like I had much to lose, anyway, even if I got caught." It was kind of weird, the way that it was becoming easier to talk about what had happened, at least obtusely. To the point that it slipped into his everyday conversation sometimes without him realizing it. It tended to cause a lot of awkward moments, actually. Because over a year later, people still didn't know how to react - still didn't trust him to not react. But he'd spent long enough fighting away the memory of his brother. It was wrong to push Jack out of his life - completely selfish, and insulting to his brother's memory. But that didn't stop it from bringing back all the loss that Hunter had felt - that he still felt. He was just getting better at coping with it. He had to. It was a part of him now.

Hunter just grinned and laughed a bit when she told him to shut it. But in all honesty, when Victoria did take her coat off, he could see why she'd wanted to keep it on in the first place. "Where'd you find that, in the kid's section?" he asked with an amused tone, raising an eyebrow as he nodded to indicate that he was referring to her dress. "I wouldn't let your secret admirer see you in that," he said, obviously referring to Oliver Bennett, the kid who tended to stare at Victoria, and double check what he looked like when he was around her. Oh yeah, and ask her out when he's drunk, only to have his advances blown off as a joke. Now that was a particularly awkward moment to watch. Painful almost. "He might faint or something." It wasn't meant to be an insult. Just an observation. There were a ton of incredibly innocent people at Hogwarts, that just didn't know how to react to certain things. Hunter should know - he was dating one of them.

Good. She bought his double fuck you. That was helpful at least, and he grinned back at her when she laughed. "A bit obvious, yeah," he told her solemnly. "Somewhere in the middle?" he repeated doubtfully. "Well, since you weren't even paying attention, I might just have to ask them myself," he told Victoria with a grin, glancing over at her friends. "I mean, this is some important shit, knowing where I rate on the female Ravenclaw radar. I could put it on my resume when I graduate or something." Hunter raised an eyebrow at her when she instantly started defending Blake. "So, you yell at me when I don't greet you like a git, but then you reduce my rating because I'm a git?" he asked in amusement, and then snorted when Victoria said that her friend knew he was an asshole. "I'd bet you five sickles that that wouldn't matter, but like I said, I'm meeting someone."

Apparently the idea that Hunter was going on a date was preposterous to Victoria. He just waited while her laughter died down, taking a drink of his firewhiskey. But he was unable to contain his own laughter when she brought up Moaning Myrtle. "Unfortunately, when I asked her, she told me she's too afraid to come this far away from her bathroom," Hunter responded, playing along. "I was devastated of course, but I did manage to find someone else to go out with me." But the Victoria asked seriously who he was meeting, and Hunter just grinned. "Tell you what Campero," he said, quickly calling the barkeep over. "You have five guesses. But every time you get it wrong, you have to take a shot." He slid the smaller shot glass toward her and crossed his arms, looking at her expectantly. "If you guess it, I'll match the shots you took, plus one." But that would never happen, because Victoria wouldn't guess. Or if she did, it would be by luck. Not because she really thought she was right. "And yeah, you know who she is."

Victoria seemed completely thrown off by what he'd said. And Hunter wasn't even the slightest bit sure if she even believed him. Damn it, time to divulge more of the truth. "Look, last year, after everything happened, I could never sleep. I'd just stay up in the common room for hours, way after everyone else went to bed. One night, Agnes joined me - to apologize for kicking me somewhere particularly painful on the train ride. We ended up talking. And it just kind of became a thing. But we aren't exactly publicly friends." It felt so strange to tell somebody. He'd never even told Ariel about his relationship with Agnes. "So yes. We talk." But it just wasn't getting through to her. But his brow furrowed when she said it was too late to help. That she'd stay with Agnes even after - "After what?" he asked. "Victoria, come on. You aren't her only friend." Hunter raised an eyebrow as Victoria downed her drink in one go. Apparently, the pressure was getting to her. Good. Obviously, the only thing to do now was buy her another one.


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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Tue Jan 27, 2015 5:43 am

Talking about his brother and just generally about what happened seemed effortless for Hunter. As if he had finally reached that stage of acceptance. Which doesn't mean that the whole thing is any less fucked up, but it makes the past easier to deal with. As he spoke, a small smile escaped her lips. She was proud of him really. The Hunter that sat next to her was a totally different person from the Hunter a year ago. And she was glad about it as the latter version was impossible to talk to. Just as Victoria was going to say something supportive and encouraging, he commented on her dress. "Where'd you find that, in the kid's section?" Rolling her eyes, she flashed him her middle finger in response. "I told you to shut it! There is nothing wrong with what I am wearing, you git. It's just a... dress", she said a bit unconvincingly. The truth was, 99% of the time she wouldn't be caught dead in something like this. But it's a miracle what a girls night and some peer pressure could do to you. "It's not even mine, alright?", she quickly added defending her choice of clothing. Glancing at the coat next to it, she suddenly wished that she was still hiding beneath it. But even if she tried to put it back on, she would just die from heat as a result. So that wasn't really an option.

"My secret what? Secret admirer?", asked Victoria raising her eyebrow at Hunter. What the hell was he talking about? She didn't have a secret anything, let alone a secret admirer. Sure there were a few assholes that liked her, but they definitely didn't keep it a secret. And the feeling wasn't mutual at all. The Ravenclaw couldn't even think of a single guy she was interested in right now. Or even someone that was trying to get close to her. No, definitely not. That just didn't happen to her. "He? Who is he? And why would he faint?", she asked even more confused than ever. His word's just didn't make sense at all. "You know I really think you are slowly losing it Hunter. Maybe you should take it slow with the drinking. It's making you image things", Victoria said with a chuckle as she took his comment the only way it made sense - as a joke. 

Hunter didn't seem to understand that these ranks of theirs was serious business. It wasn't just a random list of guys, oh no. It counted in looks,personality, academic potential, profession potential, family history, physical and mental health, genes and of course the willingness to commit. It had it's own algorithm for fucks sakes! "You laugh Hunter VanDerberg, but that list basically determines your future. Your potential to be in a successful relationship. It took a month to figure out. And the list never lies", she said with a grin, only half joking. Actually the other girls took it a lot more seriously than she did, but it was still quite impressive anyway. "I might expect you to be a git, but that does hurt your rank. It falls under the personality and mental health category." When he mentioned her friend Sophie, she just tried to ignore the subject. Because the sad truth was that she would lose that bet in an instant. If she had any faith in her friend's integrity, she might make that bet just for the hell of it. But truth be told, she didn't. 

A game that involved drinking and guessing Hunter's potential date? Hell yeah! She didn't need any more convincing than that. "Okay, okay, deal. But you can't cheat! If I guess, you have to tell me. And five chances... right?", she asked, already feeling the effect of the previous drinks of firewhiskey in her system. How the hell would she manage five more shots? But her curiosity was killing her and she couldn't just back away from an opportunity like this. All she really had to do was think. Yes, make a list of the possible dates and use a system of elimination to choose just one. Simple enough! But who was Hunter interested in? Obvious first choice was the ex, Seren. But would her roommate actually agree to go on a date with him after everything? Victoria wasn't sure. Choice number two was the shy girl. He obviously didn't believe that she could guess it even with five chances, so it must be someone under the radar. Someone shy and secluded. Maybe someone they met recently. Wait, what was that girl's name who was with them at Qudditch game? And choice number three was the best friend. Well that was obviously Aoife, but that paring seemed very unlikely. "Alright... Is it... Seren! Shit no, not her. What about that Puff girl, um Jessica I think? No... Or Aoife!", Victoria rambled, not having any other ideas what so ever.

She listened him speak about Agnes with surprise. She didn't realize they had a relationship at all, let alone that they are friends. But this was good, it was a good thing. Like he said, it meant that Agnes wasn't alone. That Hunter was her friend too and would potentially support her through this. Could she trust him not to freak out and tell everyone at school? Victoria tried to think of an instance when Hunter had betrayed her trust or had spilled a secret, but she couldn't find a single one. Alright, so maybe she could trust him. After finally realizing that Agnes could use all the friends she could get right now, she decided to tell him the truth after all. She took a deep breath and grabbed her drink for another large sip of liquid courage. This was going to be so shitty. "Ok, but you have to promise me something first. When I tell you...you can't freak out, you can't yell, you can't break things. Because we are in a bar, in public. And you DEFINITELY cannot tell anyone. Not a single soul. Even under threat of death, you will keep your mouth shut. Understand?" she asked making sure Hunter knew all the conditions first. And then she remembered how she reacted to the information. Yelling, falling off her chair, almost dying cause she couldn't breath. Fuck, this wasn't going to be pretty. "Agnes is um... She was feeling sick for a while. And tired. But she didn't really pay attention to it. I was worried too and she told me that she finally went to see the Head Nurse. And she told her that she was - fuck, Hunter - Agnes is pregnant", finished Victoria as she slowly prepared for the worse.

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:59 pm

Hunter just snorted in amusement as Victoria tried to defend what she was wearing, but more or less failed. "Relax, Campero, you look fine. Or, at least, you look like every other girl in here, so nobody's going to give a shit what you're wearing." Girls were so stupidly self conscious. They were always either looking to be noticed or trying not to be noticed. When in reality, nobody gave a shit what they were wearing but them. Hunter raised an eyebrow at Victoria, when she completely blew off his secret admirer comment. "You're kidding, right?" he asked a bit incredulously, because she seemed completely serious and he wasn't sure how anybody could be that oblivious. Well, that wasn't entirely true. Aoife was the most oblivious person that he knew. "I'm talking about Oliver," Hunter told her. "And I'm pretty sure I didn't imagine him asking you out at the Quidditch match. Or were you too drunk to remember that?" Hunter knew that she hadn't been too drunk. She remembered. She must have really thought it was just a joke. Again, oblivious.

Was that really what girls did in their spare time? Spent an entire month making a system to rank guys? What a waste of time. "The personality and mental health categories?" he repeated, snorting. "Well, yeah, I guess I can see how I might not be in the top five then. Doesn't exactly sound like my kind of list." Now that he thought about it, they were Ravenclaws. He'd learned early on from Seren that Ravenclaws were more or less an unhealthy mix of logical and judgemental. It was only after both of those things that their actual feelings had any say. "How'd you end up in Ravenclaw, anyway?" Hunter asked suddenly. "I mean, no offense, you're plenty smart. But so is Blake, and he's in Gryffindor. I mean, you don't seem much like the rest of your house." Like Evan, or Seren, or that Derek kid.

"I won't cheat," he assured her, rolling his eyes. "I mean, every time you guess wrong, it costs me more money, so I have no reason to." Hunter raised his glass to his lips as he watched Victoria clearly try to piece it together in her mind first. He just stared at her after her first guess. Seren. "I think I fucked that one up beyond repair," he said, pushing the first shot toward her. Then, Jessica. "Who's that?" he asked, furrowing his brow. Shot number two. Ordering one more, he waited for her last guess. Damn. She'd guessed it - purely by luck, obviously. "I have always had a thing for redheads," he said simply, still grinning like some little kid who had just found a huge bag of candy. Reaching for the last shot, he tossed it back himself, showing Victoria that she'd guessed right.

Okay, she was going to tell him. Finally. Hunter released a relieved breath, because he really didn't have any other tricks up his sleeve aside from getting her even more drunk. "I'm not going to tell anyone," he said impatiently. "And I don't freak out." Hunter wasn't the freaking out type. His brow furrowed in slight concern when Victoria mentioned that Agnes was sick. There was bad, as in something had happened that had upset her, and then there was bad, as in she had some kind of deadly illness. But Hunter kept quiet, because Victoria was still talking and he didn't want to interrupt her while she was telling him what he wanted to know. As she got to what seemed to be the end, after Agnes went to see the head nurse, Victoria hesitated. Like she didn't seem to know how to say whatever it was. He'd just raised his glass of firewhiskey to his lips to take a sip when Victoria finally revealed the reason behind Agnes' strange behavior.

Holy fuck. The moment the words were out of Victoria's lips, Hunter choked on his firewhiskey, somehow managing not to spit it everywhere. Agnes is pregnant. Pregnant. Agnes was pregnant. The words might as well have punched Hunter in the stomach - that was what it felt like. That horrible, miserable, irreversible feeling that you got after being caught in a huge lie, or when you suddenly realized you'd forgotten something that you couldn't go back for. Or when you found your brother lying dead in the middle of a crowded street. That painful, gut-wrenching, feeling that was a mix of panic, nausea, anger and shock apparently also applied when you found out that the girl you'd been sleeping with for the past year was pregnant. Hunter felt the color drain from his face, knew that there was no way that he could hide the look of shock that had dominated his expression. And that was all within the first five seconds after Victoria told him.

But other than choking, he didn't react obnoxiously. He didn't exclaim in surprise or fall off of his chair or anything. Instead, he felt his body do the exact opposite. Hunter froze. Completely. Because he knew this feeling - and he knew himself. And if he let it out - allowed it even the slightest inch of control - he'd lose it. He'd knock his bar stool over and throw his glass on the ground and go punch a wall, and then all of the fucking Ravenclaw girls would have to adjust his values on their fucking scale, particularly in the mental health and ability to not impregnate your significant other categories - and put a huge fucking red X through his name, writing him completely off of the list for life and consequently ruining his future. But it didn't matter, because his future was already ruined. Holy fucking fuck. Fuck this shit. Fuck everything. Forcing himself to remain calm - at least for now. In public. He could lose it all he wanted later on, but for now, he was in public. With Victoria. Waiting for Aoife. Aoife... shit, Aoife! One date. He would get one fucking date, a few fucking days with her. And then, he'd have to explain to her how he'd ruined everything. The first stages of denial setting in, he finally responded to Victoria in a tight, disbelieving voice. "No she isn't."

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:06 am

"Only you can make 'you look fine' seem like an insult", she responded rolling her eyes. But thankfully, the conversation steered off from what she was wearing to something ever more strange - the topic of her secret admirer. Which Victoria didn't have. Obviously! Anyone who thought otherwise was seriously misinformed. "Yes, I'm quite serious in fact", she confirmed with another nod of her head. What was Hunter getting at with all of this anyway? When he mentioned the name Oliver, Victoria started to think of all the guys she knew with that name. No many at all. In fact, only one. "Oliver? Oliver Bennett?!", she asked with a laugh. This must be the best joke she has heard in a while. Ollie... liking her... in secret. Hilarious! How did Hunter even come up with this shit? But when her laughed died down and she examined Hunter's facial expression, she could tell that he wasn't joking at all. Shock became evident on her face when he proceeded to explain what really happened at the Qudditch match. Ollie was there, check. He asked her out on a date, check. She was more than a bit drunk, double check. But it was all a joke, a spur of the moment thing. Right? Totally embarrassed from this awkward situation, Victoria lowered her gaze as her cheeks turned red. She wasn't the shy type at all but she simply didn't know how to respond to the situation accordingly. First came denial. "Don't be ridiculous! That's not true at all. It can't be! Ollie doesn't like me, not like that at least. We are best friends! He's a great best friend. But that's all it is... right?", she said, in the end asking Hunter to support her theory. She knew how to be friends with Ollie. She was happy being around him! But something more than that... she just wasn't really sure, never having considered it before.

She hadn't really though about the list that much before talking about it to Hunter. Simply because she was used it. Because for one, she herself was a girl who was surrounded by even more girls. Girls just did these kinds of things. And two, she was a Ravenclaw. Her housemates had an exaggerated need to put everything in the right box, every human in the correct category and every student in the right rank. They could find competition in everything, no matter how big or small. Did that make some of them judgmental? Sure. Elitist even. But Victoria liked her house no matter what. She found that even though she didn't fit in completely, she still felt like she belonged. "Eh, I don't know. But I'll take that as a compliment. I think I'm on the border really, a mix of a few houses. And the sorting hat just didn't know where to put me so he shoved me into the house that had the most vacant seats. But I was a second year when I got here. Remember? I had to do the sorting process in Head Master's office. It was so strange", she said trying to recall that day and how scared she was. The whole concept of houses and foreign to her so she didn't really know what to expect. And being the new transfer kid wasn't much easier either. 

Instantly regretting her first choice of Hunter's potential dates, Victoria took her first drink and finished it from one go. Okay, perhaps Seren was a bad guess. Her stubbornness guaranteed that she would rather cut her arm off than go out with Hunter, just because. It would take a miracle for her to change her mind really. The second choice was equally as bad. He didn't even remember her name for fucks sake! How rude. But if it wasn't her then who? She had mentioned Aoife simply to test out her luck, without considering her a serious contender. I mean did Aoife date at all? Victoria doubted it. She was too busy living her life and being awesome to even think about guys and dating. Which made her pretty badass. But just as the Ravenclaw had reached out for her third shot, Hunter took his instead and tossed it back instantly. No way. NO WAY. She was going to doubt his seriousness for a second but the grin on his face revealed that he was in fact telling the truth. "What? Hunter! I am so happy for you. Aoife is great! And if you can actually um...well tame her a bit... I think you would make a great couple!", she said with a grin. "But in all seriousness. I have no idea what she was thinking saying yes", she added with a smirk.

Watching Hunter react to the news was like watching an airplane that is bound to crash into the ground and burn down a whole village with it, but you just never knew when it was going to start to fall. He grew stiff as his face turned expressionless. That was it? No screaming? No fighting? No breaking things and throwing heavy objects? Victoria started flinching at his every move, expecting a violent reaction at every turn. But it never came. Hunter wasn't exactly known for keeping his cool and she had seen him lose his shit more than a few times. Which is why she was so thankfully that this time it was different. So far at least. They were in a public setting after all and the last thing she would want is for them to cause a scene. That would throw at lost of suspicion on her, especially from her friends. They would ask questions. Questions she couldn't give them an answer to. She watched him intensely, as if he was a ticking time bomb that could blow up at any moment if she said or did anything wrong. Did she do the right thing by telling him? Only time will tell. "Okay Hunter... I need you to breathe. And calm down. Because your face is pale and you look like you're going to throw up", she said softly, scared to startle him. 'Please don't throw up, please don't throw up....', where the words that kept going through her mind. But if he did, she could at least mask it by pretending it was the alcohol's fault. "Can I get a water?", she asked the bartender, not really sure if she should offer it to Hunter or throw it in his face and tell him to get a grip. Because really, he wasn't the one who was pregnant! "Yes... she is. I know it sounds unbelievable. But the healer confirmed it with an ultrasound. She has a picture of it and everything. I am trying to make her go to St. Mungo's, simply because the healers are all a lot more capable there. But... there isn't any doubt. She is starting to show already", Victoria said with a sigh, as she couldn't hide how worried she was for Agnes. "But I told you, she's gonna be fine. I'm gonna help, she won't be alone through it all. Even though the fucker is non-existent", she said through her teeth with anger and disgust. Who on earth would abandon their own child like that?

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:25 pm

"It wasn't an insult," Hunter replied simply, shrugging his shoulders. "It just wasn't a compliment - mostly because you don't seem like you'd appreciate one even if I tried. It was more of a... friendly reassurance, I guess." But he snorted when Victoria seemed adamant about nobody being interested in her. "Do you know any other Olivers?" he questioned, his tone amused. And as she continued, launching into how Oliver Bennett couldn't possibly like her in that way, Hunter just watched her, a slightly incredulous grin on his face. "Victoria, come on, I thought you were smart," he said finally, when she finally finished talking. "The kid couldn't be any more obvious. And apparently, you couldn't be any more oblivious. But trust me. When he asked you out the other day, and you blew him off? He wasn't joking."

Hunter had actually felt pretty bad for the kid, and had honestly hoped that he'd drank enough that he wouldn't remember it in the morning. Rejection always sucked. Hunter had plenty of experience with that. But as it turned out, Oliver Bennett handled rejection in a much more socially acceptable way than punching walls. "Drunk words are sober thoughts," he reminded her, shrugging again and taking another sip of his firewhiskey. "I honestly forgot that you came in second year," he told her. "It's so long ago that it all just mixes together a bit, you know?" Until third year. That was the point in time when each year began defining itself. Third year - the moody, rejected, vengeful year. Fourth year - the best year of all his time at Hogwarts. Fifth year - the year that they should have never gone to Diagon Alley for school supplies. Sixth year - to be determined, but so far a mix of happiness and sadness. "You could have easily been a Gryffindor. And I've actually never been in the headmaster's office," Hunter told her. "Which goes to show how good I am at not being caught," he added with a grin.

The grin on Hunter's face only broadened as Victoria caught on. "I mean, I've only been trying for six years, it's about time she gave in, don't you think?" he replied, but was unable to hide the excitement in his voice. That was what was so different about dating Aoife - or, trying to date Aoife. With any other girl, he'd always been laid back, confident. Completely sure of himself. But when it came to Aoife, he tended to feel more like an excited kid on Christmas morning. Yet, at the same time, like a sexually frustrated seventeen year old guy who was getting nowhere with his contractually bound girlfriend. It was a particularly strange mix, really. Either way, he snorted at Victoria's next sentence. "Did you say tame Aoife O'Donnell? Sorry, but have you met her?" An impossible feat. Definitely. Besides, she would be far too boring afterward. "Anyway, you probably shouldn't congratulate me yet, we're just seeing how it goes, you know? This is the first time I'm taking her out."

Fuck. Victoria was talking to him, but Hunter forcefully pushed her voice from his head. It wasn't helping. It was just giving him a reason to react. A reason to release all of the panic that had welled up in his chest. And he couldn't do that. Not right now. He vaguely heard her order him a water, but shook his head. Water wasn't going to do shit. Instead, he utilized whatever self-control he had to reach for his drink, throwing it back all at once and then quickly ordering a shot straight after. The drink burned at his chest, helping at least minutely to burn away some of whatever the hell he was feeling. And then, Victoria was explaining in more detail, and Hunter thought that he might throw up. But instead of throwing up, he interrupted her, his voice sharp. "No, she can't be." Yes, she could be. If anyone was sure of that, Hunter was. Fuck. Finally, the barkeep brought his shot, and he downed it without a second thought. Shit. He looked up sharply at Victoria at her last sentence. The fucker is non-existent. No, the fucker was sitting right there in front of her, and just hadn't been appropriately informed. Until now. "Fuck, Agnes..." he muttered under his breath, though probably not quiet enough to keep Victoria from hearing. "But she's... okay?" No wonder she'd freaked out at him. If he was freaking out, he could only imagine what Agnes must have gone through. Fuck. "Did she say who - ?" he couldn't help but asking. Not that the answer mattered, when Hunter already knew that it would be wrong. Apparently, nobody knew the answer to that question but Agnes. And him.

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Fri Jan 30, 2015 2:11 am

"Victoria, come on, I thought you were smart", were the words that echoed in her head. She was studious, when she wanted to be, and academically driven perhaps. And sure she liked to surround herself with books more often than people, but that obviously didn't help her in the recognizing potential signs of a romantic interest department. Ask her about healing potions, or the history or Hogwarts or heck even about the properties of a dozen and more herbs - she would know it all. But when it came to other things, she was completely oblivious. So Ollie liked her all of this time. He wasn't just trying to be friends, he was trying to ask her out! But how was she supposed to know that? There's wasn't a book on these types of things or an instruction manual. "But... I mean...", she started, still in her own state of denial. And then it dawned on her. The many times that Oliver had froze in front of her, how he flinches when she reaches out for a hug, the time that he confessed his feeling for her in the Boy's Lavatory and finally the moment he had asked her out in front of everyone only to be taken as a joke. "OH", she said as the final pieces of the puzzle finally came together. How could she be so blind all of this time?! Confusion set on her face as she didn't know what or how to feel. But that initial reaction was quickly replaced by guilt - for embarrassing him in such a public manner. "Oh poor Ollie. I just didn't know. I would never..." rip his soul out and stomp on it in front of everyone to see? Yeah, that's something she thought she would never do. But there was still the issue of the date, which she had technically agreed to go on. "Would he... I mean does he expect me to... go? Because of what I said", she asked hoping for a clear explanation. Because having that conversation with Ollie is something she would rather avoid. 

After considering it for a moment, Victoria realized that she wouldn't mind being placed in Gryffindor. She had plenty of friends from the house already and was certain that she would fit in fairly well. And she didn't hate the Gryffindor colors although she had always preferred the Ravenclaw blue. "In Brazil we were just separated by years, not by houses. So when I came here it didn't really matter to me. I didn't know the difference between Hufflepuff and Slytherin. Although I am happy that I ended up in a house with a half-decent Quidditch team", she said with a grin, imagining how frustrated she would feel being part of the Hufflepuff team. Although besides the unfortunate badgers, everyone else seemed to be on point with their Quidditch skills. Every house wanted that victory trophy and this year the competition was starting to get a lot more intense. "You have never been to the headmaster's office? I find that very difficult to believe. You either have crazy stupid luck or you're not as dumb as you look, VanDerberg", she admitted with a laugh.

Victoria watched Hunter as he spoke of Aoife, noting the mixture of excitement and anxiousness in his voice. She couldn't help but smile at the surprising sweetness to his tone and the soft sparkle in his eyes. So Hunter VanDerberg had feelings for someone, for an actual live person. Feelings that were more evolved than just sexual attraction or intrigue. It was a miracle! It was like watching Christmas and Easter happen on the same day. "Well, well... I truly did not think that I would see this day come. I never thought I would ask this but... Hunter VanDerberg - are you in love?", she asked with a teasing smile, anxiously anticipating his response. "Alright taming her might not be a possibility. More like letting her adjust to the situation. I say just give her time and before you know it you'll be going out to celebrate your anniversary", she said with a grin, seriously liking the idea. Why did it take her so long to consider the option that the two of them would make such a great couple? They were a clear match! "Although be careful. I wouldn't mess with Aoife unless you wanted to end up at the bottom of the Black lake", Victoria said quite seriously, although she knew that her warning wasn't necessary. Hunter already knew this by himself.

One shot after another, Hunter seemed to swallow them as if they were soothing his soul. As if they were necessary, needed. But Victoria had enough to deal with without having to drag his drunk body all the way to the Gryffindor tower. He just might be too heavy for a petite girl like herself to lift and carry. "That's enough", she warned him as she grabbed the empty shot glasses and pushed them towards the bartender. He didn't have a reason to drown his thoughts with alcohol. He wasn't a part of this mess at all, excluding his friendship with Agnes. But that certainly couldn't be so profound and long lasting. They had just talked a couple of times. Could one even called them friends? Either way, all things considering he should be taking this news a lot better. And not turning into this mess that was just waiting to fall apart. "Okay? I wouldn't call a teenage girl who is pregnant okay. But she will be fine if that's what you mean", she snapped, a bit confused about his reaction. "No, she didn't tell me. But that doesn't really matter since clearly that fuck isn't part of the story anymore.... What are you not telling me Hunter? Do you know something that I don't? Spill it", she demanded as she eyed him suspiciously. Something was happening here, she just wasn't sure what.

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PostSubject: Re: Truth Be Told (Victoria)   Fri Feb 20, 2015 6:08 pm

Watching Victoria put the pieces together was kind of amusing. Like watching Einstein suddenly realize that two plus two equals four. A smirk played onto his face, but he kept quiet, reaching for his glass. As he took a large sip, he watched Victoria mutter to herself a bit, and observed her expression change about four times before, finally, it all seemed to click together for her. "Yeah, I'd say OH is probably an appropriate response," Hunter agreed, still a bit bewildered that she really hadn't been able to tell to begin with. "I know you wouldn't," he told her, shaking his head. Hunter and Victoria weren't exactly the best of friends - they both had their own crowds. And though she was a bit quick to anger whenever somebody hit a bludger at her or tripped over her, she wasn't mean. "And I'm not sure - I wouldn't have taken you seriously, but I don't know about him. He was pretty drunk, you should probably just hope he doesn't remember it at all," Hunter told her, shrugging. "If he brings it up again, just let him down easy," he added, not even considering the possibility that Victoria would have any other reaction. Ollie was a nice kid and all, but Victoria was a bit out of his league.

"Why do people always seem to think that I'm so incapable?" Hunter responded, rolling his eyes. "Just because I blow off class." It wasn't that Hunter was unintelligent, it was just that it took a different form in him than in most people. "See, here's the thing. There's the kind of smart that gets you good grades in school, like you, and then there's the kind of smart that gets you firewhiskey when you're underage, an array of illegally brewed potions at your disposal, and a date with Aoife O'Donnell when she typically wants nothing to do with you. If you ask me, it's debatable which one is more useful in life," he responded easily.

Hunter gave Victoria an unimpressed look at her next words, a bit thrown off by them. "In love? No," he replied, shaking his head as though the answer should have been obvious. "Just crazy enough to risk my well-being on the off chance that Aoife will suddenly spawn into a normal sixteen year old girl and decide that dating me wouldn't be so bad." Which was a very slim chance, really. "She's a bit oblivous," he added. "And by that, I mean that she's the most oblivious person that I've ever met." So oblivious that it was frustrating, and Hunter still hadn't figured out a foolproof way to get a feel on what she was thinking. "And yes, I'm fully aware of the potential repercussions if I manage to piss her off." What Victoria may not understand was that he was more likely to end up at the bottom of the lake for pursuing Aoife than for hurting her. Was Aoife even capable of being hurt? It didn't seem so.

After to many seconds, the few shots he'd taken began to cloud his brain. Not much - and definitely not nearly enough. But enough that his urge to throw a glass across the room minutely dissipated. Enough that he could control it. Victoria was pushing his empty shot glasses back across the bar, and Hunter made the split decision that it was probably a terrible idea to ask for another one. Victoria was talking - maybe answering his questions. But Hunter was too distracted to hear what she was saying. His mind was swimming with shock and confusion and anger, and whatever Victoria had to say at this point wasn't going to change anything. "What?" he asked, as he finally brought his attention back to the conversation, having missed most of it. What wasn't he telling her? Hunter knew that he couldn't answer that question. Because Agnes hadn't told her, and because if he said it aloud, he would throw something. Actually, he might throw something anyway. No, he couldn't. He had to get out of there. He had to go back to his dorm where he could punch his own wall and nobody would bother him. He'd just stop in Florean's, tell Aoife they'd have to do their date a different day, and go back to the castle. Without answering any of Victoria's questions, Hunter slid off of his barstool."I have to go," he said, fishing in his pocket for a few sickles and slapping them on the bar in front of her. "That should cover our drinks. I'll see you later." And with that, he took off.

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