"No."

"Why not?"

"Because," Mina tilted her head to onside, "learning the piano takes dedication, skill, finesse and patience, needless to say you posses none of those qualities."

Ruby pouted. "Not even if I say please."

"Ruby I can't understand why you'd want to learn. Surely you've got far more important things to do with your time? Dogging round after Luke for instance?"

Ruby let out a huff. She had in fact stumbled across one of her mother's self-help magazines yesterday evening and with nothing else on her hands with the exception of much need Math revision for her Mock next week, she had settled down in front of 'Eastenders' to causally browse its pages of wisdom. Somewhere a particular passage about unrequited love had caught her eye. Apparently it was a stage everybody went through and the key to claiming you ignorant stud was to distance yourself from them while becoming a social butterfly in their presence.

Well, being a social butterfly was all fine and dandy, but Luke was so wrapped up in smiting that she only ever saw him in the stacks or before her saved her from a particularly nasty blow from some oozing monster or other. Which meant her "Luke substitutes" were limited to Galvin, which would be a considerable risk to her lungs from the amount of passive smoking she would be forced to do, or Mina…

"What if I promised to try my best and be patient and…"

"Develop you lack of skill, finesse and dedication?"

It took a second for Ruby's Victorian translator to kick in before she nodded, making a mental note to look finesse up in the dictionary later. Mina sighed and slid gracefully to one end of the piano seat she sat on.

"I'm not sure how much of an effective teacher I'll be."

"Why? Cause your awful at teaching?"

"Because I'll only be able to hear the numerous mistakes you'll be making." Mina said wryly. She shook her head. "I use to be a teacher."

"Really? I didn't…oh, Dracula." Ruby frowned. "Anyway, what do I do?"

"You see the two black keys; the white key to the left is a C…"

------

Mina, of course, had turned out to be an excellent teacher. She was patient yet persistence and had made Ruby play 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star' through until she didn't make her cringe. In fact Ruby couldn't pin-point the exact moment it had happen, but somewhere during the lesson she'd begun to really enjoy herself.

By the time Luke and Galvin slopped through the door, the teenager had coaxed another lesson out of Mina, who had only given a faint protest before agreeing with a laugh and disappearing into the stacks to find the hidden bottle of whiskey Galvin claimed desperately to need.

"What are you looking so pleased about?" Luke asked throwing himself into the nearest sofa.

She grinned. "I've mastered 'Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star'.

Her friend raised a bemused eyebrow. "Of course."

"Anyway, I have got a math test next week I need to revise for."

Luke frowned. "You don't want hear about my horrific ordeal with a type 8 and Galvin's corny country music?"

"Nah."

He frowned watching her skip out the Stacks, throwing a See You Tomorrow Mina over her shoulder. Later, the woman in questioned just grinned impishly at him over the rim of her mug, when he queried her about his friend's unusual behaviour.