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by: Sam Sullivan
February 9th, 10:10 pm

In an alley off of Brewer Street in Oxford, there was nothing happening. Shops outside of the alleyway were lit, shoppers were shopping, patrons were entering and exiting Madame JoJo's club, but nothing was happening in the alley. Everything seemed to be right as rain, which coincidentally was forecast for that evening.

The first big, fat drops of the night storm plunked purposefully against the garbage cans in the alley. Steadily, the drops began to increase in pace and cadence. Rumbles overhead sent the late night crowd indoors. Rain was one thing, but who really wanted to be holding an umbrella up when there was a chance of lightning? And, a bolt would strike soon, if the flickering street lamps were any indicator.

Indeed, the wise observations proved true. A white lance of energy stabbed into the ground in that nothing-happening alleyway. With the usual lightning bolt display of sparks and energy, the bolt short circuited the nearby electrical wires, plunging the block into darkness. Unlike lightning, however, this bolt deposited a man. He was dressed as an office worker, completely unprepared for the showers now drenching him.

"...oh hell, really?"

He hunched his tall frame and ran for the nearest doorway. The bookstore it belonged to was long closed, not keeping open for the late night shoppers. The young man sheltered there for a moment, catching his breath.

Sam Sullivan, wizard of Her Majesty's government, investigator for the Department of Homeland Security had successfully traveled back in time. Now, if he could only figure out when and where exactly he was...
Last edited by Sam Sullivan on Mon May 16, 2016 8:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
A long day, that's what this was. Alan was starting to realize that he put in far too many long days. He didn't do anything for fun. He didn't have any hobbies. It was work all day, help out people on the side after work, go home with take out, try to talk to Lydia for a little bit, and then pass out hard. That was his life. Even on his days off, Alan volunteered and worked them too. But what else was he supposed to do? It wasn't like he had a social life. It wasn't as if he had... anything beyond some awkward dinners with his family and trying to help out Lina when she popped up.

He just wanted to help people. That was all the healer wanted to do. In a world full of pain and hurt, he just wanted to make it better. The problem was, he could never balance the odds. One set of hands could never do that. Today was one of those days though, he was tired and he just finished up his volunteer work, visiting someone who was in hiding to help cure the affects of a curse they had gotten the bad end of while trying to get away from an unfriendly group. The Order had tipped him off to the person in need and he had taken care of it.

But now he was working his way home the muggle way. He was entirely too tired to actually apparate, he didn't trust himself to do it safely, so he was trying to walk home... in the rain. Just his luck, right? His curly red hair was plastered to his head and his raincoat was... actually not working the way it was supposed to. The big guy hadn't managed to get very far before there was a weird light off in one of the alleys he had been walking past. Which to him, meant some sort of spellwork was going on.

Which meant that Alan had to go take a look at what was going on, because someone might have been hurt. He couldn't walk away from that. Instead he jogged into the alley despite his exhaustion and looked at the man who was standing there. "What just happened? Are you alright?" He had no idea who this guy was, but if he was hurt, Alan was willing to help him.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Sam checked his pockets. Wand, check. Properly dated money, check. Research notes, check. Personal defense kit, check. Forged paperwork, check. His displaced was on his wrist, looking as innocent as a watch. He had everything he needed, yet he had not planned for rain. The historical records had indicated that this evening was cloudless; had something gone wrong?

Sam shivered in the rain. Was this a byproduct of the displacer? None of the tests had had this result, but then none of the tests had gone this far back. Director Schnidt had warned against unforeseen issues, as had Ced and Soren. Time has a way of balancing itself; don't be surprised when you encounter surprises.

"...yeah, great piece of advice, Pop, thanks..." Sam muttered to himself as he thought about his next step. Shelter and food were next bit where-

A familiar voice cut into his thoughts. Was he alright? Sure, displaced twenty years in time and deposited in an unfamiliar part of town, but other than that, peachy. Sam looked over at the familiar six foot five red headed uncle who was decades younger than the last family get together. Of all the people in all of London, how had he come across family? Don't be surprised at surprises...right.

"Good, yeah, I'm alright, thanks for asking. It's a long story...what happened, that is. Needless to say, I came unprepared for the downpour and I'm a little lost, but not too worse for wear. Yourself?"

His tone was light and friendly despite the cold rain. Damn, why was it raining? The records...ah well. Uncle Al of all people was probably the best luck he was ever going to get. The man was a walking dissertation on hospitality.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
Pop? Who the hell called anyone else Pop? Alan's eyebrows shot up for a moment. Maybe he looked older? Old, in face? He had been working a lot of hours lately. That was bound to take it's toll on him sooner or later, he just hadn't expected it this young. He hadn't been a healer that long after all, but career healers typically looked older before their time. Maybe his was just striking early. Something for him to think about in the future.

There was something about the younger man's speech that felt... odd. Weird in way, like they somehow knew each other or like he had grown up around someone that Alan knew. Something about his voice, but Alan couldn't put his thumb on it. The shorter man also sounded a bit scattered with his words though. As if he had run head first into a wall for a moment. Which always concerned Alan because head wounds were always tricky. The red head tried to squint in the rain, deciding it would be best to stick around for a bit.

"If you're lost, do you need directions or something?" Never mind the rain. Never mind the fact that Alan had forgotten an umbrella and because he was walking through a muggle part of town he couldn't even charm the rain off of him. Someone may have needed help, so here he was. "I know it'd be easy to get lost in this mess, but I live in the area so I know it pretty well." And he could walk the man part of the way to make sure there wasn't something really wrong with him that he just didn't think to talk about. Maybe he had gotten hit by something, but he looked perfectly fine. Besides wet, but that was another set of problems instead of anything else.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Hell and damnation, how was he supposed to lie? He didn't have a place that he could get to, off the top of his head. What was that old pub dad used to talk about? Dripping Cauldron? Leaky? Leaky. That was it.

Sam cleared his throat and hoped he wasn't in the completely wrong part of the city. For all he knew, the Cauldron was the next block over or twenty miles away.

"Leaky Cauldron? Small place, out of the way from what I understand...I'm not from this area, you see, and I'm here on business."

It wasn't exactly a lie. Besides, what was Alan going to do, lecture his nephew-that-he-didn't-know-was-his-nephew on honesty? If anything, Sam was being really forward considering that this was a secret mission to investigate potentially universe shattering things. Sam ruffled his dark hair and grinned at Alan. It was good, despite everything, to see a familiar face.
Last edited by Sam Sullivan on Thu Dec 10, 2015 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
The man got a bit of a look the moment that he said Leaky Cauldron. That old place? It had been damaged a bit in the last craziness that had been going on lately, but it was mostly in one piece. Enough that this fellow could actually show up to it. But that instantly meant that Alan assumed this fellow was magical. Wizarding folk. Maybe he had apparated in? There shouldn't have been a weird light, but maybe something in the sky had just aligned with this guy's arrival.

"That's on my way. I can show you." Alan realized what was so familiar with this man's voice, he said a few things like someone who knew Russian would. Like his sister did, and well, the rest of his family. Alan's own accent was purely British, but that was because he rarely spoke Russian. Only when his sisters spoke it or his mother, on the few times he managed to grab time with them. It was hard for Alan to find Lina and he worked too much to spend too much time with his other family. He... was finding it increasingly hard to spend time with Layla or his mother because... well, he was in the Order. Things could get very awkward when you were having dinner with your death eater relatives.

"So where'd you apparate in from?" It was a little bit of a test between them. If he was a plain, regular sort of muggle... then he'd have no idea what that word met. But if they were privy on the wizarding world, then it would tip the conversation in the right direction. Alan nodded over his shoulder in the direction he had come from. He would have to go a little out of the way to show him the Leaky, but Alan didn't mind. He never did.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Hmm. How would he answer this? He COULD just try being honest...what was there to risk? Well, a temporal rift for one, paradox shifting for another, and then plain old 'kid-you're-crazy' for a third. But he'd gain a confidant, safety, and the friendship of family. Weighing the pro's and cons, Sam regretfully sided with the universe's safety.

"Scotland. I'm an investigator and my boss has me working a case of chrono-paradoxical fluctuations. We've tracked the events to London...it reeeaaally cuts my work out for me, what with the actual investigating and the maintaining the statute of secrecy..."

There. He was from Scotland in his timeline, and he was an investigator. He was also doing just what he said. The techno jargon and all were in character for the lean man. He shielded his face from the rain with his forearm and followed Alan. Hopefully they could talk shop. That was safe and easy to talk about.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
Alan really tried to listen to the words coming out of the guy's mouth, but none of it sounded like... English. Well, some of it did, but not all of it. Chrono--something other. He knew chrono was like time or something. But other than that he had no idea what he was talking about. And from Scotland? Investigator in a wizarding capacity? This guy was going to need a better cover story if he was going to get through the front door here.

A bit of a laugh escaped Alan and he looked down before shrugging slightly. "You're going to need a better cover story than that." It was all he was going to say. As long as the man's papers were in order, that's what really mattered the moment he stepped over to the magical world. If they weren't, then he was about to be in a whole mess of trouble. Which made Alan feel bad, but it wasn't something he could push at the moment. Because if he was legit and he did somehow work for the government, Alan could get in a whole lot of trouble for trying to give him a warning.

But what if investigator was for something else? Who the hell really knew these days? Alan really didn't. "The Leaky's this way. Not too far." He offered the other guy a smile before wiping a hand through his hair to get it away from his face as he moved in the right direction. "If you're trying to be a little more secret, maybe try not to randomly show up in a rain storm next time? You could have apparated straight to the Leaky if you wanted. Would have been easier." It was all said in a friendly tone, perfectly calm and jovial.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Sam felt his face contort in frustration. A better cover story? It was as much of the truth as he could muster. How much more could he tell, really, without risking the fabric of time?

"That IS my story..." He sounded sullen. He was sodden most definitely, since the rain decided to pick up. He sighed in frustration. He didn't have any spare clothes because it wasn't supposed to be RAINING.

"Where the hell did this rain come from? It wasn't supposed to rain today..." Sam grumbled this mostly to himself, but maybe Alan would take it to be conversational.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
One eyebrow lifted as the man explained that he was telling the truth. "It was in the paper the last few days that it was going to rain today. I just forgot, personally." Maybe he had hit his head. Alan gave the shorter man a little bit of a puzzled look before shrugging his shoulders. "It's just that... there isn't a ministry in Scotland with wizarding folk. So I'm not sure what Ministry you're talking about." Alan said this calmly, hoping that he wasn't dealing with someone who had mental problems. He'd have to act calm regardless, because this could have been someone trying to pull a fast one on him, but as long as he stayed neutral and helpful, no one would care.

But really, what Ministry was this man talking about? The only Ministry that Alan was aware of here was the one in London. The Ministry. The one run by terrible people and Lord Trevor, who was also missing at the time. No sub-ministry or anything of that nature in Scotland. Not that he could remember. But perhaps he was just out of the loop of things. It wouldn't be the first time such a thing had happened.

"The guards might ask you for your papers, so just have those ready when we get past the Leaky, alright?" He wasn't stopped too many times, but that was because Alan was notable with his height. Most of the guards had already checked his papers often enough that they knew him by sight. Alan Kalkuskov, pureblood, healer. Lived in a muggle flat because it was close, but saw his mother often enough that they didn't press too hard in questioning him, for fear of having to deal with Natasha Kalkuskov. She didn't take snide comments to her only son very well, if only because she was proud of his job and things of that nature. He brought good things to the table for his family, though his mother wished he was already married to some pureblooded princess with a higher station than their famil-- it was a long story. Not one he wanted to go into. He moved along the way to the Leaky, stopping every once in awhile to make sure the other guy was following him and to wipe the rain out of his face so he didn't stumble into the street and get hit by a muggle car, like his father had. That would have been too ironic for words.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Sam's brow furrowed even deeper when he was informed of the newspapers. That wasn't right. The bean counters with MI:5 had specifically gone to the library for print copies of the paper to verify the weather, both the week previous and the week following. If the papers were different, then that meant the timeline was different. Which meant that if he spilled his real story, it wouldn't matter because time was already changed.

"I was raised in Scotland, but I work for Her Majesty's finest in the Ministry...Let's see, how do I explain it..."

It wasn't that he couldn't; quite the opposite since he was considered a minor expert in the subject after the year and a half of research for this night.

"A chrono-paradox is an uncommon event that happens when time is disrupted...usually someone goes back in time and changes something substantial. It usually presents as dates changing in history books or newspapers going blank."

Sam took a pause to shiver. It was supposed to be a warm spring night with no clouds...

"My department got a lot of calls about textbooks going blank both at Hogwarts and primary schools around the nation."

Let him puzzle it out. Uncle Alan was smart enough to put two and two together with what he'd been given...his willingness to admit out loud though was going to be another matter...
by: Alan Kalkuskov
Her Majesty? Alan slowed and gave the bloke another heard look, stopping in the middle of a sidewalk to turn and look at him slightly. "As in the Queen of England?" Which was a muggle thing. Muggles weren't aware of the wizarding world, at least not in a manner that suggested that the Queen of England would ever have magical folk working for her.

Perhaps, if Alan hadn't already met one time traveler, he would have thought that this guy was completely mad. Completely off his rocker. Instead there was mild shock on Alan's features followed by instant understanding. Textbooks going blank at a certain time, the Queen of the muggles in the area working with magical folk. "I think you came back to the wrong time, mate. Muggles and wizarding folk don't mingle. Queen of 'em wouldn't have anything to do with wizarding folk. You don't have papers that state you're a half blood or a pureblood of some sort, they'll make a slave out of you." Alan's voice was low as he spoke, carefully worded so that if this turned out to be some sort of sting, he'd be able to talk his way out of things without too much trouble.

"Tell me. Ever come up where a situation might be completely different from what you're expecting? Like rain on a night where there isn't supposed to be any?" Alan lifted a finger to point up to the clouds. He had to be careful. Lydia was back at his place. He couldn't chance putting her at risk by taking in another stray. Not if he couldn't be trusted.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Sam slowed his pace and stopped by his uncle. It was slightly amusing to watch the gears and levers process the information, spitting out the answer to an equation that, logically, shouldn't exist. History was a fickle thing. Changing it took a lot of effort, usually intentional. As Alan verbally processed and confirmed the fact that Sam had mentioned the Queen, Sam felt himself smiling ironically and standing a little taller. He gave the red head an ironic salute.

"One half-blood papered, paranormal investigator of the Combined Ministry Affairs, Paranormal Investigations Department, Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Squad Eight, reporting for duty twenty years before his twenty second birthday, sir."

He snapped his hand out and down in the flourish of the salute. Sam had a manic twinkle in his eye. It was liberating to disclose who he really was, finally. Speaking of which...

It gets better, see. This being my first time time traveling and all, I think it's less coincidence and more fate that I wind up jumping into an alleyway and meeting someone from my past...obviously your future. "

Sam's face went serious. He continued the next bit in Russian.

"Lina Kalkuskov McGarret is my godmother, making you my uncle. My father was assassinated when I was two, leaving me in the care of his best friend and your brother-in-law. I by no means expect you to take me in. I have arrangements already to stay at the Leaky Cauldron, along with the necessary paperwork."

That would be a lot to take in; Sam waited politely for Alan to process that ton of bricks revelation. He maintained a steady composure so as not to draw any idea or doubt into the story. This was, at its sincerest, the best truth he could give.
by: Alan Kalkuskov
Combined Ministry Affairs, that was the bit that Alan didn't quite believe. In the past, yes the government worked with the muggles, but now? Would the Lord work with muggles? Alan doubted it, but they probably needed some sort of coordinated effort to keep some of the things that had recently happened under wraps. Was the Queen aware of everything that happened in the wizarding world? Probably not. She might have done something to stop it if she had. Alan knew that she was a figurehead at best, but he was still more British than anything else, and he had to admire a dynasty that had lasted so long despite everything it had been through. Still, it was rueful thoughts at best, and he decided that ignorance was a better belief for him, otherwise he'd be angry at more than the wizarding government for hurting people.

Someone from his past? They knew each other in the future? Well, wasn't that interesting. "You're not the... first person with that story to bump into me. Though the other one didn't claim to know me from before." Alan carefully watched the younger one launch into Russian, which was another twist for the taller man. He wasn't expecting it. The Russian was a little odd, but it wasn't too far away from Alan's Russian, which was rusty at best. But he understood the need to speak a different dialect considering the subject.

A bit of a chuckle escaped Alan when the guy brought up his sister, but there was a little bit of a cold look in his normally warm gaze. "My sister? I think you've gotten some people mixed up. My sister isn't dating anyone. She hasn't in a long time. I haven't heard of anyone with the last name McGarret even on her radar." Granted, Alan wasn't exactly a prominent figure in Lina's life currently. She might have been seeing someone, but he knew from there terse, short conversations that while she might have picked up a lover for a few weeks or even a couple of months, she wasn't about to settle down with anyone. Marriage wasn't something Lina ever wanted. Alan had sorted that much out from their conversations. Not since Lucas had died.

"But say this is true," Alan was speaking Russian, each word becoming more confident as he spoke," and you are my sister's... godson. What are you hoping to find out to fix this vanishing text problem? Do you even know where to start with such a thing?" Alan was taking this pretty calmly. Once again, he had already met one person from the future. It was easier to accept the second time around. Doubly when the first had been his roomie for a couple months now. Alan started to move again, back in the direction of the Leaky. He could still drop the guy off, even if this was a pretty weird conversation as far as conversations went.
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by: Sam Sullivan
Sam's cocky grin disappeared completely when Alan cornered him on the subject of his investigation. Oh yes, he knew where to start. All the dates were centered around December of this year. Why then, did he appear in the spring? Because all events have a chain of contributing factors. It would do him no good to arrive in November just to find that the events were already unstoppable. Rather than explain this, he satisfied the question with a nod.

"A bit of an idea, yeah. I need to get my evidence set up, but I have to wait til I have a room, so there's that. Once we get to the inn, I can show you if you'd like."

Photocopies of the text books, moving pictures showing dates flickering, reports both recorded and written about an historian being unable to articulate the events, culminating in a hysteric breakdown...records even, of dreams that Seers were having. Those were the worst of the lot. The dream records told of mutations and war. The unheard of blight, a return to the inquisition-style persecution of magic...they made Sam creeped out, to tell the truth. Still, evidence was evidence. The duo turned a corner and, through the heavy curtain of rain, Sam thought he spied their destination.

"Is that it? The little shoppette that's huddled between the two bigger stores?"
The pub indeed seemed hunkered down, trying to shelter itself from the rain.
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