A Magical Roleplaying Experience 

 #32745  by Kerry Butler
Location: The Leaky Cauldron • Date: 8 September 2023
Time of Day: 4 p.m. • Weather: Light Cloud Cover

With a crack, a lone, tall woman in a tea dress appeared in Diagon Alley mere paces away from The Leaky Cauldron.

Kerry Butler was put together as any grown woman attending a daytime social function would be, except she looked visibly upset, and was carrying a stuffed Teddy bear that donned a London Policeman's uniform. She appeared out of thin air, mid-step, and as soon as her foot hit the ground, Kerry stomped towards the door to the magical pub.

At the door, she rubbed a hand across her face to dry remnants of faint tears, before entering the pub and making a beeline for the bar. Depositing the Officer Teddy upright on the bartop, she slunk into her seat, resting her chin in the heel of her hand.

The bartender gave the stuffed animal a questioning look, quirking an eyebrow.

Kerry met his eye, "Mead."

The bartender shrugged and went to fix her drink.

Kerry regarded the bear with a sigh as she waited, poking at its soft fur. Poor Officer Teddy. Mistrusted by muggles and wizards alike, apparently. Nowhere was safe these days from misguided suspicion.

The bartender returned a moment later with two drinks. One, for Kerry. He placed a second, miniature cup in front of the teddy bear too.

Okay. Kerry couldn't help but half smile at that. The bartender nodded at her, acknowledging that his work- cheering up a sulking witch in need of a smile, if only a little- was done, and he walked away to help another customer.
 #32748  by Natasha Porter
Tasha didn’t often stop into the Leaky Cauldron for a pint, usually preferring a watering hole near her place, but today she was in Diagon Alley anyway so why not. She stepped through the door and walked up to the bar and ordered herself a drink, doing her usual scan of the room over her shoulder to look for anyone she knew.

Her eyes paused quizzically at the young woman in a tea dress and a teddy bear several seats down the bar from her. She looked almost familiar...someone at the Ministry?

“Need any company? she asked, approaching with her pint.
 #32755  by Kerry Butler
"Cheers." Kerry muttered under her breath and half-toasted the teddy bear. She was mid-sip when Tasha approached her.

She choked a little bit on her drink when she saw who it was. Perhaps the more senior auror couldn't place Kerry, but Kerry had done her homework on who was who in their department. Oh God. She did NOT just toast a muggle stuffy in front of another auror. This would have been deathly embarrassing even if it was someone closer to her level.

Kerry put her drink down, clearing her throat. Just be cool, Ker.

"I do, actually." She gestured to the teddy bear, "My friend isn't much of a conversationist."

At the same time she sat up a little straighter, well aware of how terribly unbecoming a pout was on a junior auror.

She held out a hand, "Kerry Butler." Kerry hesitated, quickly calculating the chance she'd get away with pretending they weren't colleagues and she simply had a twin with the same name down at the Auror office.

She added, "We work in the same office, actually."
 #32778  by Natasha Porter
Tasha smirked at the young girl's reaction and quick response as she pulled up the bar stool next to Kerry, took her seat, and gave the offered hand a firm shake.

"Tasha Porter," she replied, her Chicago accent still unmistakable after nearly 20 years in the UK. "I know you, Kerry. I make a point to know the people who might have my back in a wand fight, particularly the talented ones."

"...though I will say I didn't immediately recognize you in a tea dress with your little friend here," she chuckled into her pint glass as she took a sip.
 #32798  by Kerry Butler
Kerry smiled as she shook Tasha's hand. The smile fell when Tasha brought it back to the bear. Kerry sighed.

"My first muggle baby shower since outing myself to my oldest muggle friends. I have to admit it all went rather poorly."

She took a healthy gulp of mead.

Really. Kerry thought they would have all been thrilled to know where she'd been all those years, and that she never stopped caring about them. That mystery was finally broken, and they could become close again. Instead, she was treated as the massive elephant in the room, ignored if not for the occasional suspicious stare. It was a complete disaster.

She had excused herself from the party as soon as it was appropriate, but was quickly chased down but the host before she could leave, who sheepishly returned the gift Kerry brought.

"They wouldn't even accept my gift! Said it was just too nice, they couldn't possibly" Kerry took another drink, "We all know what they really meant was 'Sorry, Kerry, we can't have your cursed bear in our house near our unborn child'. "

Kerry rolled her eyes, "He's just a bloody teddy bear. My husband found him on Amazon."

As if she'd gift a bunch of muggles a magical toy, even if magical toys were awesome, and she wished that she had grown up with them herself.
 #32850  by Natasha Porter
"To hell with 'em," she frowned, setting down her drink on the bar. "Sorry you had that sort of a reaction. I lost track of most of my Ordinary....muggle...old habits die hard...friends after high school. And now I'm a cranky old bitch who doesn't have many friends at all, so I can't exactly say that I relate....but it still sucks."

"Take it you're not from a magical family if you've got a lot of muggle friends and you're married to a guy using Amazon?" she asked, shrugging out of her blazer, folding it gingerly and setting it on the bar stool next to her. Tasha wasn't much for wizarding fashion, usually opting for professional attire that would be just as common in a muggle insurance office; today she had on a sharp-looking suit with pair of black dress slacks adorned only with her badge clipped to the belt, and a simple white blouse.

Realizing she probably shouldn't be drinking with the badge on, she tugged it off and slid it into a pocket of the blazer.
 #32870  by Kerry Butler
Kerry nodded at Tasha's question, "Yes and now I've found myself attached to one. Lucky for me he happens to be alright."

She picked up the bear and placed it in front of Tasha, "Poor sense of humour though. He thought this was hilarious. He works for the muggle police service. I can't say I get it, but it's cute."

Kerry then reached for Officer Teddy's cup of mead and poured it into her own, taking another drink.

She offered a thin smile, "They pay us to be bitches. Best job in the world, isn't it?" Kerry held up her cup to Tasha for a toast.
 #32871  by Natasha Porter
Tasha chuckled and clinked her glass into Kerry's. "I'll drink to that alright. Wouldn't give it up for anything." She took a long pull from her glass that nearly drained it and motioned to the bartender for another round with her hand as she swallowed.

"My mom spent 32 years working for the Chicago PD. Dad was a firefighter. Public safety's just in my blood, I guess."
 #32873  by Kerry Butler
Wow, she was really nailing this after that rough start. Normally she found her superiors at work so difficult to talk to. Perhaps it was eating a dose of humble pie earlier in the day that loosened her up a bit. Or the shared muggle connections. Maybe it was the mead. Either way...

Kerry knocked back the rest of her drink.

"That's brilliant, Ms. Porter. You must make them so proud."
 #32912  by Natasha Porter
“Sweet merciful Christ, stop, Ms. Porter is my mother,” she chuckled, “Tasha, please. Nat if you want to annoy me; Porter if you don’t like either other options.”

"It's been nice lately being able to talk about work with my mom without worrying about getting in trouble or having some creepy obliviator do a mind job on her," she replied, a smirk crawling across her face. "Though I'll be honest I never hid much from her, even back when I was a rookie."

"Are you able to talk shop with your man, or does it get weird? When I was young I dated my partner for a while...two partners, Jesus...so there wasn't a ton of occasion to talk about work since we were both there doing the same damn thing."
 #33370  by Kerry Butler
Kerry cracked a smile and nodded affirmatively at Tasha’s correction on the name.

When she mentioned talking to her mother, Kerry’s eyebrows arched upward.

“Still, I imagine it was something of a shock?”

Kerry took a long pause after Tasha’s last question, before looking shamefaced at the other Auror, “Funny thing.” She laughed a little nervously, “He actually thinks I’m just a secretary ...at the Ministry.”