[ Click for OOC Comment ]October 2027
Hospital Visits1. Patrick
“Sammy!” the small girl burst into the hospital room, holding something round and squishy in her skinny arms and propelled herself all the way to the edge of Samara’s bed, grinning.
Sam smiled as the two adults shuffled inside. “Hey, Hannah,” she greeted the little girl, stroking the top of her head gently. “Hello, Ellen,” she nodded at the woman standing behind her daughter.
“Samara,” she replied cheerily, with a nod of her own. “‘S good to see you again. Crap circumstances though, aren’t they?”
“A bit,” Sam replied. She turned her hazel gaze on her brother. “Pat.”
Patrick stood there, one hand resting on his girlfriend’s back, the other on Hannah’s shoulder. He didn’t smile.
“Sammy, we got this for you!” Hannah said excitedly, propelling the large stuffed thing into the young woman’s arms.
“Ohh, thank you,” Samara said with a laugh, picking up the rotundly fluffy object and holding it up, rotating it in her hands slowly. “Er --”
“It’s a bugbear!
” Hannah exclaimed proudly. “Only not one of the blood-sucking ones. Mum said it’d be a good present for you because if you cause any more trouble, it’ll eat you!”
Ellen slapped a hand over Hannah’s mouth and sighed. “I was only cracking a joke,” she said apologetically to Samara.
“No no, it’s good, really, thanks El,” Samara replied, examining the somewhat ferocious looking bared teeth in the stuffed bugbear. “It’ll keep me in check.” She had meant for that to come out as a joke, but she only realized afterward how much darker it had sounded. She set the bugbear carefully beside her and then pushed herself slowly into a better position, being careful not to agitate her leg. She looked over at the family in front of her, her eyes resting on Patrick’s hard brown ones. Sam raised her chin, defiantly holding his gaze. No one spoke.
“Sammy, when you get better are you going to come over and play with me?” Hannah asked, breaking the silence as she grabbed Samara’s hand in her two smaller ones.
“Hannah, why don’t we go find some pudding?” Ellen suggested, scooping her daughter up into her arms. “We’ll be back in a little bit, and then we can keep talking to Sam, okay?”
“Aww, mum! Patrick, can't I stay?”
Samara hastily interjected. “It’s all right, Hannah, bring me back some top-notch pudding, yeah? Only the best tasting kind, so you have to test it first.”
“Erm -- okay!” The girl gave Samara a thumbs up as she and her mother made their way into the hallway. The door clicked shut behind them. Her brother immediately sighed and folded his arms, stepping closer to the bed.
“What were you thinking, Sam?” he finally said, a hint of anger in his tone. “Are you mad? You’re going to Azkaban!
” He hissed the last phrase, keeping his words private. “Azkaban,
Mara! People go mad in there!” He threw up his hands fiercely.
, all right? I know!” Samara made no attempt to keep her voice calm or quiet. “Don’t you think I understand that? But there’s nothing I can do about it now! And it’s just two years. I’ll be out and everything will be--will be normal, all right?” The truth was, Sam was terrified of Azkaban. For two years, she wouldn’t see the light of day; she wouldn’t know anyone there, and probably wouldn’t want to. There would be officers left and right telling her what to do, when to do it, and how. She would have her life stripped of any freedoms. Dementors would patrol the halls, leaving Sam in a desperate state of loneliness and depression. Oh yes, she knew what she was facing -- and she knew that she would likely not survive the experience. She would snap.
Patrick roared wordlessly, kicking the hospital bed hard. “You idiot! How could you do this to me?”
“To you?!” Samara was getting quite angry now. “Don’t be selfish, Pat! I did nothing to warrant a stay in Azkaban! It was the people I worked for--”
“I’m being selfish?
Listen to yourself! Telling me excuses for why you’re going to prison! Well, I’ll tell you right now that they don’t matter! Sam--” he leaned forward and gripped her shoulders fiercely. “I won’t get to see you for-- for two years.
And Hannah -- she’ll be 7 by then -- you’ll miss it!” He gripped his eyes shut as several big tears splashed onto the hospital blanket in Sam’s lap. Her eyes widened.
“Pat...” Samara closed her eyes, silent for a long moment. She had been trying not to think about what she’d be missing. She smiled softly; even though she wasn’t his daughter, Patrick loved Hannah with all of his heart. “She doesn’t need a shite influence like me hanging about her anyway.”
With a rather weak attempt at a chuckle, Patrick pulled his arms away slowly, letting them drop to his side. “Have they told you when?” he whispered, serious again.
Sam shook her head. “Once I’ve healed enough to attend trial.” It wasn’t going to be much of a trial; she was guilty of knowingly working for one of the worst crime lords in the country. She hadn’t killed anyone, but she’d made it possible for criminals to have their way with the resources of the country, and in the law’s eyes, it was almost worse. “The healers say it’ll be another week yet before I’ll be allowed out of St. Mungo’s. I’m waiting on an owl from the Ministry.”
Patrick slumped against the wall, gazing sadly at his sister. “Only a week?” he muttered quietly. “That’s hardly any time--” he frowned. “Samara...have they come to see you yet?”
“No,” Samara said flatly, “and I don’t expect them to. Get over it, Pat. They’re not going to come. I’ve broken their hearts too many times.”
“But you’re their daughter!” He growled, clenching his fist. “Their daughter, who they haven’t seen in years, who’s about to get sent to prison!”
“I’m not their daughter!” Sam winced; in her agitation she’d moved too sharply and pain seared through her injured leg. “They have a daughter, and she’s showing herself off in Milan right now. That’s where they are.”
Patrick’s fist hit the wall loudly, but surprisingly he let the topic slide, instead putting his hands back in his pockets and taking a seat on the chair next to the bed. He paused for a moment, then reached over and grabbed his sister’s hand, squeezing it lightly. Sam squeezed it back, closing her eyes and leaning back against the pillows.
“I guess convicts don’t get the comfiest beds,” she joked, opening a eye to glance at Patrick’s face. He gave her a crooked half-smile.
“If they weren’t holding my wand, I would fix it for you.”
“Thought that counts, mate.”
The two of them sat there in near silence for what seemed like ages and yet no time at all, until Samara felt herself slowly slipping off into sleep. Fuzzily she heard the door open.
“We have the pudding! Ohhh,” came Hannah’s little voice just as Patrick shushed her gently. Hannah reduced her voice to a loud whisper. “She is sleeping now? But I wanted to stay and talk some more!”
“She’s healing. She needs to rest so she can get better quicker. How about we come back on Thursday?”
Sam felt Patrick’s hand slip out of hers, resting itself momentarily on the top of her head, before it pulled away altogether.
“Did you talk to her about it?” Ellen’s anxious voice drifted through the air as they made to leave.
“Well? Is she scared? Is she worried? Is she doing all right?”
“El, please -- of course she’s scared. Right terrified.” There was a pause. “I think we’d all be. But it’s something different for Sam. She doesn’t do well in a cage.”
“And there’s no other way? Nothing more that the Ministry will do?”
“She broke the law. That’s that.”
“What if she gave them information? People strike deals all the time, don’t they?”
“Babe, she would never do that. And besides, they caught Anton, what more could she really offer them?”
“I thought she might have been known something more --I just don’t--”
“Mommy? Who is putting Sammy in a cage?”
“Nevermind, love. Time to go.” Sam heard the door click shut yet again and she opened her eyes briefly enough to let a few tears fall down her face. She wrapped her arm around the bugbear and rolled her head to the side, falling into a troubled state of sleep full of dark shadows and violence, from which she would later have a hard time waking.2. Harry Potter
Sam was reading; what else was there to do? She’d managed to get the auror outside the door to lend Samara her copy of Quidditch Monthly, and was now reading an intriguing article about the effect time has on an unused broomstick. She wistfully thought of her own Stardust 1313, a beautifully crafted Beshemin original, gathering dust in her apartment. It had been three days since she’d seen Patrick, and she thought about telling him to take her broom out every once and a while. He was already taking care of her cat, and wasn’t her broomstick just as important?
Sam groaned; boredom was sinking in. She looked around her quarters, taking in the bleak atmosphere. It was dark, the only light emanating from a lamp on her bedside table, casting shadows all around her room in this late hour. There were no other beds in the room; Sam was under confinement, after all. Her only real company was an auror guard, who was posted at the door 24/7. This was something Samara hated with a passion. Like I can just run off, anyway,
she thought miserably. Her leg was next to useless. And most of them refused to talk to her, probably thinking it was beneath them to associate with a criminal. Samara shrugged it off; what did she care what they thought, anyway? But being confined to a bed all day got quite dull.
Sam turned the page. She immediately twisted her face into one of disgust. “Awh, come on!
You’re giving Shean way too much credit. He wasn’t bumphing, he’s just bad!” Sam watched the replay through a wince as the Wimbourne Wasps beater practically fell off his broom to catch a piece of the bludger that careened straight at the crowd. She scoffed and threw the magazine to the ground. “This is crap, you can take it back if you like,” she grumbled at the auror outside the door.
“The article on page eighty-three isn’t so bad,” replied a voice much deeper and more masculine than that which belonged to the female auror. Samara looked up. Had the guard switched already? The magazine shot back onto her lap from the ground, the page in question staring up at her. The title read, “Potter to Lead Britain to World Cup Victory” in flashing letters. Standing there looking just as arrogant as ever in front of the freshly drafted team, shining in the spotlight, was none other than her old schoolmate, James Potter II. She looked up as a man of average height walked into her bedroom. Samara couldn’t make out the newcomer’s face. She pushed herself up into a better sitting position. The man stopped just outside of the circle of light cast by the lamp.
Sam picked up the magazine and gestured at him with it. “You must be proud of him, Mr. Potter.”
With a small smile, none other than the Head of the Auror Department and savior of the magical world, Harry Potter, stepped forward into the light. “Oh, I’m always proud of James, no matter what sort of antics he gets up to,” he chuckled, sitting in the chair beside the bed and looking at the young woman.
Samara set aside the magazine and scratched the back of her head. “Don’t suppose you’re stll miffed about the flying motorcycle?” she asked, referring to a time many years ago when she and James had taken it for a joyride, sans permission. That was the last time she’d seen Mr. Potter.
“Nah,” he replied with a dismissing wave of his hand, “the scratch came right out. And the bike’s James’s now, officially,” he added with a laugh, “So he can take as many girls on it as he fancies.”
Samara’s hard gaze fell on the older man’s face, studying him. “Why are you here, sir? Just out for an evening stroll at St. Mungo’s and felt like popping in on an injured soon-to-be convict?” Her voice dripped with sarcasm.
“Sort of,” Harry replied, a glint in his eyes that Sam couldn’t quite read. “I had a rather late night at the Ministry, or I would have come sooner.” He shifted in his seat, pulling something out of his robe pocket. It was a parchment scroll. He paused before handing it to her, looking at her. “Ms. Raillen, what made you join the Underground in the first place?” he asked. It was a simple question, without judgement, making Sam swallow a nastier retort in her throat.
She looked at her hands, thinking about the best response she could give. She thought about his motivations for asking, but also knew she wanted to defend her choice and stand behind what she said fully. Finally, she she met his gaze.
“I joined because I wanted to live an adventure every day, without rules, without restrictions. I joined because the people I worked with were more family to me than my real family. I joined because nothing makes me feel more worthwhile than being able to protect someone from someone else.” There. She’d said it all. It had tumbled out of her mouth unintentionally, but it was there now and she didn’t take it back.
Harry’s knowing smile grew wider, and he leaned forward, handing her the scroll. “That’s exactly what I was hoping you’d say.” He sat back again and folded his arms, watching her silently.
Samara slowly untied the scroll and unrolled it.
Samara Idris Raillen, Case No. 329124
Your case has been evaluated and, in light of the recent influx in official Ministry hearings, the Department of Magical Law Enforcement has determined that, upon confession of your crimes against the Wizarding world, you may choose between two years sentence in the wizarding prizon Azkaban, or two years of community service. This community service will be determined according to the severity of your actions, and will be discussed with you in person by an official representative of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. No exceptions or additions can be made to these conditions once they have been decided upon.
If you choose to accept the terms of settlement, your case will be dismissed and in five years' time, you may request to have this incrimination expunged from your record.
Department of Magical Law Enforcement
Ministry of Magic
Samara read it, brow furrowed, then looked up at the man before her. “So you’re the department representative? Am I really supposed to believe that they sent the
Harry Potter to negotiate my community service,” she asked bemusedly, “or is this all just a big joke?” Who knew, maybe James got his mischievous side from his father.
Harry Potter shook his head. “It’s all real.” He tapped his finger on the purple letter. “This is your ticket out of Azkaban; to turn your life back around. Are you going to take it?” He looked at her; she felt caught by the scrutiny of his green gaze. She let her eyes travel up to his legendary scar, visible beneath his cleanly trimmed dark hair. If anyone would know about turning one’s life around, it would be this man, who started with nothing...
She narrowed her eyes. “What is it that I would be doing for the next two years? I can think of a few worse things than going to jail for a couple years,” she stated bluntly; of course, she really couldn’t think of anything worse than Azkaban, but she still had a sneaking suspicion that the community service wouldn’t be cleaning up after quidditch matches.
The Man Who Defeated Voldemort pulled out another piece of paper, folded in quarters, and unfolded it. It was a flyer, it appeared -- for Hit Wizards.
“Er,” Sam replied. “Hold on --” She looked back and forth between Harry’s face and the flyer. “You want me to be a Hit Wizard?” From what she knew, the Hit Wizards were a branch of Law Enforcement that only went after the highest threat criminals and sent them to Azkaban. They were a not an investigative force, but one which went in and got the job done. Like a--well, like a hit. It was supposed to be one of the most life-threatening jobs out there (second in rank only to the ludicrous patents testers).
“For two years. At first you’ll be training with the new recruits, but with your skillset from your time with the Underground, we are confident that you can begin doing field work within a few months. You will be doing this until December of 2029. After that...well,” he said with a smile. “It’ll be up to you whether or not you continue serving the country.”
Harry then stood up with a slight groan. “I’m getting old,” he laughed. “Chasing criminals is hard work.” He looked back at her, serious again. “Being a Hit Wizard is not an easy job. There’s little free time, a high occurrence of injury, and you have to follow the law. However,” he added wittily, “it’s a lot more freedom than Azkaban.” He turned away, picking up the magazine as he did so. “Think about it,” he called back over his shoulder. “Someone will come tomorrow for your answer.”
Samara watched the legendary man leave, then laid back on her pillows, resting a hand on her injured leg thoughtfully. She stared at the flyer.
Hit Wizards: Join today!
Fight side-by-side with some of the most skilled duelists and highly-trained hit wizards in the country.
Every day is a life-changing experience. Protect your country; protect your future.
The choice was clear, really. This or Azkaban. She would do it; she would join the Hit Wizards.
But that didn’t mean she had to be happy about it.[ Click for OOC Comment ]3. Marcus“All right, now -- easy does it,” the nurse said nervously as the young, brown-haired woman slowly stood up from the edge of her hospital bed. “Don’t put too much weight on it!”
“Oh, pop off, I’m doing fine,” Samara replied gruffly, wincing at the pressure of her stance. She shifted weight to her left leg tentatively, exhaling loudly in preparation.
“Slow steps, Ms. Raillen,” the nurse replied. He reached out to grab her arm and help her along, but she waved him off.
“I’ve got it, thanks.” Samara slowly slid her right foot forward, leaning onto it and easing off of her left. Pain was shooting through her nerves all along her leg, but she ignored it; she had one day left in the hospital and wasn’t about to prolong it by complaining. She limped back onto her left foot, then repeated the process.
The nurse’s eyes widened, and he clapped lightly. “Oh, fantastic! You’re doing wonderfully!” he said cheerfully.
Marcus frowned in the window of the door as he watched his daughter take pained, tentative steps across the room. His mind flashed back to a memory of a time many years ago, a small hazel-eyed baby taking her first steps toward his leg. She’d learned to walk very early -- he had been proud of her. This one’s going to be just as smart as her brother,
he would brag to anyone who would listen.
Suddenly, Samara slipped, and reached out to grab the nurse before she fell to the floor. Marcus leaned forward, as if about to run in and help; in his eyes he saw an infant fall onto her face just inches away from his outstretched palm. But he shook his head fervently; this was foolish, simply worn-out memories of something that never really existed between himself and his daughter. His gaze steeled as he pulled his hand away from the door. She was already getting back up, that same resolve in her eyes he’d seen in her as a child learning to walk. Nothing ever could deter his strong-willed child; she’d never needed his help, not even back then.
She wasn’t really his daughter, though. Not anymore. She had broken too many rules, and now even the law. But that wasn’t all she’d broken. She’d broken her mother’s heart, and although he would never admit it, she had broken Marcus’s heart as well.
Marcus had known about her deal with the Ministry -- he was a Department Head at the Ministry himself, and as such, he had authority to learn these sorts of things -- and his face darkened. She should be going to Azkaban,
he thought angrily. Perhaps a few years there would finally straighten her out, tame this wild child.
He clenched his fist as he heard her swear crudely, having stepped wrong on her leg. She was nothing like himself or her mother. She was rude, insubordinate, thoughtless, careless, crude, wild, lawless, boyish. To the Raillens, Samara was a criminal from the age of four.
And yet...Marcus thought back to the day Samara left the house for good, saying that it was fine by her if she never saw them again. The door slammed in his face and Anita collapsed on the table, sobbing and spilling her tea all over the carpet. Marcus’s chest had hurt quite suddenly, though he didn’t know why, and he never asked himself. Instead, he cleaned up the tea and went back to his morning paper.
The scene of his prudent wife losing her wits like that haunted him whenever he recalled it, which these days was quite frequently. He sighed. Where had he gone wrong? What had he done to deserve such a daughter as this?
It had been two years, and though nobody would have known it, he had missed Samara. She was, after all that was said and done, still his flesh and blood; they would attend a pro quidditch game at least once every three months from the time she was five; now, it seemed, Marcus had lost his taste for the game. He thought, now that she was working for the law, under the ministry even, perhaps he would invite her to a game again. The Falcons; if they were still her favorite team.
Samara was sitting back on her bed, laughing at some joke between herself and the nurse. Suddenly, the nurse looked up and pointed to the door behind which Marcus stood. Samara’s gaze snapped up to him. Marcus took a rapid step back, out of view. He gritted his teeth.No.
Samara was her own person now. She was not his daughter. He turned and headed briskly down the hall. He had paperwork to assign, and he was clearly wasting his time here. She was doing just fine, and that was enough for Marcus.