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by: Maddie Jamison
#10986
Well this was awkward. For once in her life Maddie wasn't quite sure what to do. Here the leader of a legendary group of freedom fighters was first introducing herself and then trying to explain what was clearly a pretty strained relationship to her. This woman realized she was a teenager right? A new recruit so worthless that she hadn't even been given a breakout group as much as she was just expected to follow her sponsor around like a scared and lost little puppy despite the fact that she was anything but a lost and helpless little creature- even if half the people here thought that at first glance. Still, maybe that's why the woman was telling her. Maybe she was trying to treat her like an adult, or maybe it was that she just needed someone to talk to. If anything had been evident from the few minutes Maddie was watching it was that this Kara woman was very much alone- despite offers. Maddie could understand that. She was alone for the same reasons she supposed.

Maybe that was why when she was invited to sit Maddie did so without question. That was a bit odd for her. Normally Maddie questioned everything. Tested everyone around her but around Kara she felt understood in a way. Here was a woman who, as the Tosser she had been talking to earlier put it, had no idea what she was doing but was soldiering on anyway. It was clear she was trying and it was clear that Kara wanted to fight and wanted to win. Maddie saw a little bit of herself in that. Lost but trying. Weak but trying to get stronger. And the way she forced herself to carry on as if it were the plan. The way that this Kara woman was so patient and spoke to her as if Maddie had something to offer...it was hard to resist when she had been without someone to talk to for so long.

Hesitating just for a moment Maddie finally walked over and sat on the couch straight and stiff as a board back away from the rest on the couch. If the leader of the Order wanted to talk business she would talk business like an adult-show that she could pull her weight as well as anyone else, because she could. Spell casting or no, education or no, she wouldn't be some freeloader and she would do her part on her terms just as she always had before all this. "What did you have in mind?"
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by: Kara Viridian
#11002
Kara watched as the girl took a seat and she huffed a slight chuckle, amused at the fact that she looked so stiff, as if she had to keep up some sort of front. "Please," Kara gestured with a smile. "Relax, you're not in trouble." She tried to reassure her to the best of her abilities; Kara knew her position as the Order's leader could give off a certain vibe that required proper poise and etiquette, but now was not the time. Maddie was granted an audience with Kara without needing to take a number, a candid visit offered simply because she stuck around when everyone had dispersed.

To her query, Kara's eyes were cast to the far corner of the room. She took a deep breath and gave her words some consideration. "I'll briefly touch on the garou, only to warn you to stay away from them. They're our allies, despite any of that--" Kara gestured again in reference to the scene that went down a moment ago with Jace and the others, "But their training, their living quarters and any other business will be held separate from the rest of us and will be dealt with between me and their Alpha."

At arms length, she wanted to say. Do not engage.

Jace was already going to be a headache to figure out on her side of things, and she wanted to keep as many people away from them as possible until their rocky relationship of sorts was sorted out. Kara was determined to make things work and the liability of having any Order members, recruits, refugees and allies alike--was going to make things difficult.

Nevertheless, she carried on: "There are certain branches out there, various skill-sets. Jon's taken up aspiring healers, Professor Lenor will be reinforcing spellcraft and my father and Brenna Fox will be combat focused. Those are the main branches, but there are other things out there interspersed among those branches. Though you strike me as someone who might be a little over-qualified for gardening or cafeteria work." Kara smiled. There was something about Maddie that struck her as familiar; perhaps that she saw something that reminded her of a young version of herself. Determined. Driven. A little lost along the way, perhaps but still able to handle herself in tricky situations.

"Jon told me a little bit of your background. You were a student at the school?" That's as far as she stepped. With a new person, Kara still wanted to use some tact, take baby-steps into the conversation, as not to scare her away. Aside from that, her cohort Jon hadn't even gotten the full story either, so she wanted to see what information she could draw from the girl without seeming too forceful or adamant for answers as if in an interrogative sense.
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by: Maddie Jamison
#11041
Relax. That was easy enough for the leader of the whole organization to say. Relax you're not in trouble, you were just caught spying on the leader of the whole bloody resistance to the bloody government who clearly was dealing with some kind of insurrection on the first day of recruiting. Don't worry about it just relax. Maddie had to fight shaking her head. She was sure that was a lie. Adults always had some kind of consequence in mind, even if it was just simple talking to.

Sure enough there it was. The Garou. If there was a library Maddie had to look up what a Garou was. She was pretty sure they had never covered it in history or care of magical creatures during her time at Hogwarts. Clearly based on context they were dangerous. They also seemed to be pack based because she was using the word alpha. Worth doing the research on at least- allies or not she would probably have to fight one, or at least deal with them even if they were kept separate. Walls between the two factions or not the place was small enough that there would likely be run ins. Sure they were supposed to be kept away but given the tension, it seemed unlikely. So duly noted- stay away from the Garou. Got it.

Still, unsolicited advise about some weirdly dangerous creature is not what Maddie signed up for. It wasn't the question she asked. She was looking for a place and Ms. Viridian, Kara, was taking a bloody long time getting to it. Blah blah blah branches, blah blah blah mentors. Blah blah blah cafeteria work. She had to fight rolling her eyes through the false compliment of being over qualified. Maddie was sure Jon had spilled the beans on her history which meant this woman knew she had never graduated and couldn't practice magic thanks to the trace. And despite the fact that Kara was showing what seemed to be a genuine interest in her and the woman's smile was clear and seemed to be real Maddie didn't quite trust it. People only cared if they wanted something.

"Yeah. Until they started banning people. I left...on principle among other things." Maddie shrugged. Most of her friend hadn't been pureblood. A large majority were not allowed back or had stayed home out of fear or for political reasons. Her? She just couldn't hack it alone. She had been picked on, alienated, made a reserve rather than a starter on the team. She hadn't felt safe. She still remembered begging her father to stay home standing outside the platform near the station. She remembered her fathers arms against her, holding her, keeping herself, and then gently guiding her home. Maddie felt a lump catch in her throat and held her breath to stop it. She wouldn't cry. Not here. Not in front of a stranger.
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by: Kara Viridian
#11051
The last bit of what she said stuck with Kara for a moment and made her narrow her eyes. She relaxed after a moment, as not to cause a stir in the girl who seemed to have trouble getting comfortable. Ugh, Kara hated this stupid stigma that being a leader of sorts came with--it made everyone think that you were uptight and had to be so damn proper all the time...on the contrary, Kara wasn't always like this and she never expected this seat or the treatment that came with it. She wished people would stop acting like she would curse them or cast them out for looking at her wrong, and start getting comfortable in their own place her because, Jace's opinion notwithstanding, it wasn't going to change how she ran the show. She sighed softly and nodded at the girl. "I see."

Kara crossed her legs and folded her hands in her lap, looking over at the young woman, waiting to see if she'd elaborate. However, as the moments passed, it was clear she wasn't going to get any of that without asking. "Well tell me...why did you really come here, Ms. Jamison? You encountered Jon in an alleyway. You'd been followed, and he helped you get away, but you don't strike me as someone who just hands out trust for free." It was rather eerie, how much Kara of herself in the girl. "Is there something you need me to do for you? Is there something I can look into for you?" Kara figured that she might have seemed a little over-generous with the offer, which might drive Maddie away, so she held up her hand to stop her in case she wanted to bolt or interrupt with that concern. "I know, you're just a strange kid who wandered into the compound. I know I'm just some stranger who seems to be too giving--and that might very well be--but since you left the school, there are things we can teach you here and things I might be able to look into, you just say the word. And don't take my help as a charity cause or me feeling sorry for anything because that's not how it will be, I may require your services in the future, who knows. This is just my way of offering a roof over your head. Clothes on your back. Food on the table. And whatever I can do to get you on your feet."

Kara shrugged, as she brushed her hair out of her right eye to reveal the scar there, something she'd worn for years now, she'd almost forgotten its existence. "If you decide you want to go, you can go. By all means. You're not a prisoner here. No one is." She needed to reiterate that fact, especially with new recruits and refugees coming in to stay, Kara wanted her to know there was always a way out.
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by: Maddie Jamison
#11082
I see? Was that it? Was that all she had to say for the whole thing. Normally this was when adults would start asking more questions. What were the other circumstances? Did you have any training outside of school? What happened to your parents? Why aren't you with your mother if your father is in prison? How did your father get it prison? It was all very unusual. How much did Jon tell her? Is that why she wasn't asking any more questions. The whole thing was maddening. The only reason, besides pure curiosity that Maddie had stayed was to find out where she stood and this wasn't helping with this at all. Especially not when she turned it around.

Why was she here. That was a great question. That was the question that she was trying to figure out. And could she trust this woman with what she really wanted? Did she really want to know? After all. As it stood Maddie could pretend that, however unrealistic, her da was alive along with her grandparents. That Azkaban hadn't broken them and that they were alive and well and trying to get back to her everyday. If she knew the truth that bubble may very well burst. Then again, if she knew the truth, even if it was for the worse, she could figure things out and move on. Besides, so far she had only received kindness and support from this lot. They wouldn't kill her when they were on the wrong side of the law but the right side of the world just like she was. Not for what she had done.

"I know i'm not a prisoner, but I don't want to be a charity case either. Jon, i'm sure he told you all about me. I have a place to live. I take care of myself. It was just getting a little hard. Not that i'm not grateful but I want to do my part. But I'm not sure what that is. I can't fight. I want to do more than chores. I gave up my childhood a long time ago and...I just want to do what's right. I just don't know how to do it."
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by: Kara Viridian
#11090
"Any family, Maddie? Parents...siblings...cousins..." Kara asked, as it seemed appropriate. The follow up would have been to ask if she'd been in contact with any of them at all, but if that were the case, perhaps she would have done so already. If they were in good standing, the young woman would have a place to go, instead of holing up with the first stranger who'd come to her aid: Jon. "Normally I'd ask if you would be able to stay with them, but you just said you can fend for yourself. I believe that, but I was just wondering." Kara hoped she wouldn't take that as her prying, suspiciously at that. She was genuinely curious.

"And who said anything about you being a charity case? I think that you mistake what we do here for that." Kara chuckled, but realized she might have sounded a little more brash or put off than she wanted to. "Excuse me. Let me rephrase. What you see, some of our numbers...the civilians. The people doing 'chores'? Some of them came here and told us the same as you, that they didn't want to fight for one reason or another, but they wanted to find a way to sustain this compound. The thing is, they didn't have a choice. All of the blood paperwork, when bloodlines came into effect, most of the citizens had nowhere to go. We've lost some along the way, folks who wanted out and to find a better way of life elsewhere, and I didn't stop them." Kara brushed the hair out of her eyes again, just over her scar. "Sorry to bore you with the long story but--basically put: I want to help people, but it only really works if they wish to help themselves. They're working through what we have, and it's been succeeding so far."

Staying afloat, is the right term you're looking for, Kara mused, but she wouldn't dare say it aloud. Until now, with the return of Jaleth and Jon, and even her father with the acquisition of Bryden and his crew showed things were moving along, even if it was along a bumpy road.

"And I know you said you can't fight. Fighting can be taught, at the very least, strengthen your defenses. Regardless of your decision to stay or go, I invite you to at least learn that, to protect yourself, confidently. Times are already difficult for any young woman in this world, tied in with things like these, for us..." Kara gestured between her and Maddie, to encompass the implication of Witch and Wizardkind alike, "I think we'd both rest better knowing you are able to stand your ground."
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by: Maddie Jamison
#11099
Family. Of course she would ask. Any responsible adult probably would do the same. She would tell her the same thing as she told Jon. "I have family but no one I can stay with. The family I care about is in Azkaban. The family I have left doesn't give a shit about what happens to me. They don't care about who I am...What I am. I can't go there." Maddie's eyes lowered for a second as she tried to get her anger and hurt in check. She pressed the thoughts of her mother locking away her wand and telling her to push her magic deep down where no one could see it away in the darkest recesses of her mind where they belonged- where this woman, or no one else could touch them before looking back up to continue the conversation.

Not a charity case then. Still, the way Kara was describing the 'civilian' population the less Maddie liked the sound of it. She wasn't about to do chores all day. If she didn't do them for her own mother or father she wasn't about to do it for a bunch of strangers just to stay here. She wanted to fight. She wanted to get her hands dirty and certainly not with dishwater. She wanted to help herself sure. But she wanted to help herself to survive. To find her family if they were still alive. To help others the way they had before they were locked up. She wanted to learn and work to bring things back to the way they were and she wasn't completely a helpless little young lady like this woman seemed to think.

"I'm not defensless. I know how to fight, just...just not with magic. I couldn't use it because of the trace. I can handle myself the old fashioned way pretty well. And I was already tied up in dangerous things long before you people got to me so don't try to make me a victim of the crusade- I chose this long before Jon found me. Maddie shook her head. She didn't want to come off as rude but she didn't know how else to make this woman understand that she wasn't a child. That she hadn't been a child for years now. Not just because she was on her own but because she had been at war already. War with her mother. With the regime. With herself. With the world around her. She couldn't be a child to do that. It had been so long since she had considered it and she knew that while all those fronts waged on she couldn't be the little young lady they thought she was- even if she should have been if everything was like it was before the attack.
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by: Kara Viridian
#11101
"What got them thrown into Azkaban?" She asked. At first she felt terrible because it almost sounded insensitive, but it was also because she'd been rather desensitized when folks asked her before about her husband. Some asked in a more PC fashion, others dove in with slurs about tempers and how 'those people are' and it was enough to drive her mad. On the topic of the other family members who didn't care about Maddie, Kara didn't press. She'd let that one fade off as long as she wanted it to, mostly because she noticed it struck a pretty bad nerve, and gauged her questions based on the girl's reaction. She didn't want to make her any more uncomfortable than any stranger would, meeting the Leader of a resistance organization for the first time.

Kara pursed her lips. "Defenses. It's clear you have them." The more and more she brought up helping the girl, the more she was being hit back with a certain tone that didn't sit well with her, but it wasn't the girl's fault. Perhaps she was still a little upset at her encounter with Bryden and how the meeting went. Nevertheless, she was a bit tired of having to deal with push back when all she wanted was some conversation. Still, Kara kept herself cool on the outside and left herself open to discuss anything else that might have been lurking there under the surface, because it was clear to her that there was some insecurity there, uncertainty even, where that topic stood. "I'm not victimizing you and I'm sure you could defend yourself, but as I've just met you, it's fair that I can assume that your skills are average at best, since that's how I see all of the newcomers, until I see them in action myself." It was fair, she thought, to judge everyone at a base, or "control", where everyone was average until scaled up or down in certain ways after she'd spent some time with them. Since she'd just met Maddie, and knew that she'd survived on the streets, that was still not enough for her to assume she was a skilled fighter. "...if you've made it out this far, and don't take offense to what I said earlier--I'm letting you know there are people here to help hone those skills, established or otherwise, is all." By trying to take a stand, talk up at Kara in a way that she might seem 'tough', in reality was setting up barriers, walls, and defenses of sorts, which made Kara understand that Maddie had a major opportunity for growth and maturity. If she didn't want her to discredit her for the time she stayed out alone after leaving Hogwarts, then Kara would give her that respect in a sense that she wouldn't treat her any differently from the others, kids, adults, or otherwise.

"Now, this 'trace'...you said its preventing you from using your magic?" Wanting to move along with the conversation instead of wallowing in the over-analytical nature Kara tended to fall into when assessing a new acquaintance, she decided to ask questions head on. If the girl wanted serious one-on-one volley, she'd get that. Kara didn't like forcing out the diplomatic vernacular any more than anyone wanted to hear it.
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by: Maddie Jamison
#11167
Well it was going to come out sometime. Maddie was surprised Jon didn't say anything. Maybe he hadn't had time, or maybe it was just that he didn't think it was his place, but that the secret hadn't come out yet was kind of a shock. Maddie had been sure coming into this that the leader had some kind of secret file on everyone on the operation and would have at least been able to associate some basic facts about them with their names- maybe not facial recognition but some kind of quick recall or study. Then again so many new people where in this room today. And that seemed the kind of thing only for spy books. What did she know about intrigue and war. After all, she had gotten into this and learned as she went. Everything she did was thought up in her own little brain and based in nothing in particular than that. These people had a formal operation and hierarchy and experience in war from the first few times. She was just going to have to face the fact that the story in her head was not going to match up to the reality of war. Maddie was starting to get the feeling the sooner she did that the less disappointed she would be in the long run and the sooner she could get to work.

"Theft, aiding and abetting, and treason mostly. They were stealing intelligence on how the bloodwork for the official papers worked and used it to reproduce replicas, or at least try to reproduce replicas. As far as the government knew they were never successful. My grandparents and....and my da....they were all implicated. Da worked for the department, gran was good at potions and papa.....he was the best at transfiguration you could find." As she spoke about each of them Maddie could practically see their smiling faces dance before her head. Finally she had to look down at her hands in her lap to keep herself from thinking about whether or not she would ever see them again. Whether or not her father would ever hold her closely or if she would ever play chess with her papa again, or whether gran would scold her for wearing too much makeup on her face. Keep breathing....just keep breathing.

Maddie clenched and unclenched her fists to a few deep breaths and finally looked up in time for Kara to start talking about defense. Her assessment, Maddie had to admit, much to her chagrin, was fair. Maddie hadn't known what to think of Jon until she had seen him in action. She didn't know what to think about anyone in this room and clearly that was cause alone for suspicion of talent. Not that Maddie was even sure if she would call her own particular brand of survival skills talent. It really had been more like scraping by. Not much more than that. The occasional fist fight. Lots of running. Lots of observance of her surroundings and using them to her advantage when she could. Not much actual combat and certainly not with magic. But if she could learn.....

"The trace really doesn't prevent me from using magic as much as it's a way for the government to track me. It's the trace they put on anyone under age. Since I tried going to the school when it reopened briefly after the Hogwarts attacks they still have it on- at least until my birthday. Then i'm free and clear. The average thing. I use magic they know where I was. Trying to lay low that was the dumbest thing I could do so i've been tamping it down. Suppressing it as best I can. Somedays its really hard. Especially when I was in school with the muggles and they were calling me crazy and stupid and...let's just say I wanted to show them what I could do." Maddie shrugged away the memories of feeling like she would explode in darkness. The crawling feelings of anger and sadness and fear that would take over her sitting in the cold of the counselors office as her mother chided her for not letting go again, and again and again. That sick feeling of being alone as she pushed her magic down further and further into herself.
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by: Kara Viridian
#11460
So they weren't that different, her and the girl. Interesting family history with a long line of traits, specialties and...well, a rap sheet for miles. Kara's expression remained neutral as Maddie explained her family situation, though her eyes were a little more sympathetic than the thin line of her sealed lips. She gave an understanding hum as she nodded. However, the girl seemed to listen clearly when she mentioned defenses. It wasn't that she was pissed off or put out by her. She was a her age once, long ago, granted, under different circumstances but still close enough to at least know the parallel here. Strange...

"Alright," She nodded when the she elaborated on the trace. "I may be able to help. Well, not me perhaps. But I have enough in the way of contacts who will be able to help you. That is, if you'd like. Not to mention, there are wards up. Charms. Protection from the outside, so for the most part you won't be as much of a beacon as you think. But I'll still get someone out there to help you get rid of that trace. How does that sound?"

Kara knew the nuisance of being tracked by government tracers. She'd idly stroked the skin over the scar where Markus von Wolfram himself injected the device into her arm...nasty little thing.

All in all, she was intrigued by the girl. Her attitude, her determination and flair. Kara wanted to help her, but only if she was open to it.
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by: Maddie Jamison
#11524
Maybe it was the concession that she was finally being listened to, maybe it was the quite hum or the way that Kara looked at her whiles she talked but Maddie felt like she had finally broken through. Hopefully now they could get down to whatever this was. What was really expected of her, what she could expect in return. She was sick of not being effective, sick of being a victim of the war rather than someone fighting in it and if they could help, if they would let her help then by all means she was willing to do whatever she was asked. That was something Maddie was sure no one got. They all just smiled and nodded and said that she wouldn't be expected to do anything. She was just a child. The thing they failed to realize is that it wasn't safe to be a kid out there and she had gave that up long ago. So now, to be taken seriously- it was a good sign to say the least.

Maddie listened carefully to Kara's response. She couldn't do anything but maybe her contacts could. So what this woman was saying was that there was a chance, not a great one maybe, but still a chance that the trace could be broken and she could do magic again? Even just the chance to do magic, the chance to learn to fight with magic, to do something about it rather than sit and wait for time to expire was better than nothing. Despite her efforts to be serious and act as formally as possible Maddie could feel her mouth shift into a wide grin- something she hadn't done for anyone in ages and her eyes lit up. "You think that would work? I mean. I could use magic again! You have no idea what it's been like. Some days I have to fight so hard to get it to stop and I just feel it in me and I know what it is but I can't let it it out. There were some days, when I was mad or in a fight or felt like I couldn't take them anymore that I almost felt like I would just explode."
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by: Kara Viridian
#12132
The excitement in Maddie's eyes was interesting. This poor girl was fending for herself, a magical child without the ability to create magic at all. It was sad, yet she didn't want to seem like she was pitying her since that's what seemed to put her off. At least, that's what Kara deduced from merely talking to her, treating her like an adult instead of a child. This also meant Kara had no intentions of allowing Maddie to be exempt from anything because of who she was or how she'd come to the manor. She might have caught Jon's eye and was in need of rescuing from someone or something, but Kara could see that she was willing to stand on her own.

"I can't guarantee anything will work, at least not at the moment, but we will look into it, yes...though, if you decide you'd like to be trained by Professor Lenor, myself, Jon or any of the magical mentors--I assure you that the walls are warded against most traces. The magic surrounding the manor has enough to keep us protected from the outside. The Regime, its soldiers, and the like." She didn't quite reveal that Tutaminis was a powerful entity in itself; It was able to be transported elsewhere if need be, and that it'd been standing for quite some time against the darker forces. "That's your power. Your spark," Kara said, in regards to Maddie's comment about her magic building up inside. "I'd rather not see you have to come to blows with anyone here, please. But rest assured, your magic is in there. It's always been a part of you, and we'll be able to draw it out. All this in exchange for good behavior and a couple of duties around the house from time to time. Is that clear?"

Merlin, she sounded like a bloody, uptight headmaster and the thought made her crazy but it was amusing, all the same.
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by: Kara Viridian
#17205
As the girl didn't respond, Kara took that silence as compliance, or acceptance. Even though she didn't seem too thrilled that she would have to do things around the compound, it would only be fair since they were giving her shelter, food, and offering a safe place for her to learn how to use her magic. "Don't worry. You're gonna be fine here. Alright?" Kara reached over and gently patted the girl on the shoulder before standing from the couch. "Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to head into my office. If you need anything don't hesitate to let me know."

She gestured toward the front entrance to the capitalum building, just down the hall a few feet away from the commons where they were once seated. "Ms. Fox should be in the corporum building across the way, and let her know to get you situated into your own room. We should be able to find you some fresh clothes and a few other things to get you set up for the night. Take care, Maddie."

Kara offered a genuine smile and waved to the girl before dismissing herself to head into her office. Even with the slight break of peace that she found, talking with Maddie, Kara was still upset about what happened earlier. Things might have gone a lot smoother if Bryden hadn't shown his face in the commons. What was the purpose of that, other than to ruffle feathers--get her so worked up that she lose her cool in front of the group of people she was supposed to rally together? She softly growled under her breath. Ugh. That man really irked her.
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