A/N hey there all, I know you're probably losing hope in my first story, but I HAVE indeed been writing for it. It's making slow progress, so here's something to read while you wait. Written to Scalliwag by Gaelic Storm, and no, the Rhuus clan does not reflect any actual gypsy clan that I know of, and they were based mostly off of the Gyptians in the His Dark Materials series, as well as the Romani in the Hunchback of Notre Dame, disney version of course.
As always, reviews are welcomed with open arms!
Minerva McGonagall walked up the mountain path, at dusk, through the woods. As she neared the camp, laughter and whoops reached her ears, as well as the noise of many small bells, a violin, drums, and various other instruments. The glow of a fire reached her, and as she reached the large meadow, she came across the people she had been looking for. There were many colorful tents grouped around a large bonfire, with various smaller fires burning around the perimeter, with men pacing around the edge, enchanted bows and wands at the ready.
Their clothing was of furs, which fit with the light snow that had begun to fall. beneath the furs she could make out clothes of various colors, knitted motley or solid, bright colored fabrics, and small trinkets like charms or metal beads, which emitted faint clinking sounds as the walked. Their hair was a light black, if that was possible. The color seemed softer to her, unlike the jet black locks of some others. It was cut differently on each man, some with their hair to their shoulders, others cut short, but they all had some sort of beard, whether it was a light goatee or a carefully combed and braided length. Their eyes were a light ocher, and they drew Minerva's own gaze as two of the patrolling men approached her.
"Who are you, and what is you business here?" the man spoke with a heavy accent, his royal blue scarf contrasting against his shoulder-length hair, with the glint of gold indicating earrings.
"I am Minerva McGonagall, deputy headmistress for Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. I have been sent to converse with the head of your clan, Eleazar Rhuus." she said in a dignified manner, looking the man straight in the eyes.
He gave a small smile, and she assumed one of their seers had foretold her arrival.
"Pleased to meet you, Madam. I am Davin, son of Eleazar." he bowed his head briefly, and raised his hand, lowering it slowly. It was presumably a signal to the others, for they lowered their weapons, relaxing their stance.
"May I speak to your father?" she asked.
The man nodded, his bow at his side, before turning and asking her to follow him.
They went past the guards, and simultaneously, the chilled weather evaporated into a tropical-like climate, which was so warm that the two men at once shed their furs and boots, walking barefoot along through the tents. The second man wore a loose white shirt, while Davin wore a multicolored knitted vest over his bare chest. She now saw his golden armbands and wrist guards, which she supposed signified his rank in the clan.
"We go through the center of camp to reach my father's tent, it would be best if you skirted the clear space- you may be caught in the dance." he said jovially, prompting a laugh from his comrade.
"Thank you for the warning, I will keep that in mind, Mister Davin." she said stiffly as they neared the center fire, judging by the growing brightness.
Once they made the clearing, she saw what they meant by getting caught in the dance- young women, ranging from those in their mid-twenties to their early teens were dancing around the fire, their bright skirts twirling and flowing around them as their shawl-like belts clinked with bells and metal disks. Their exposed midriffs gleamed with a light sheen of sweat as they twirled and leapt, their chests covered by short garments of the same light fabric as their respective skirts. Their skirts went to their ankles, and their feet were bare, though some had little ornaments of gold and small jewels on their toes and ankles. Their shirts ended mid-rib, with a fringe of metal disks, which chimed together as they moved. Their soft black hair was held back by scarves of various colors and designs, though some fringe and forelocks escaped the hold on most of the girls. As she observed them, she saw that though their hair was in different cuts, they all shared the same wavy locks, and they seemed to like keeping their hair long, as they tossed their manes, most of which extended to their elbows or even their waist.
One girl caught sight of them, a younger one of about fifteen, and she immediately dashed out of the dance, seeming to appear out of nowhere in front of the leader's son.
"Davin!" She cried, hugging him.
"Hello Naramine." he smiled. It was only then that Minerva noticed the gold ornamenting the girl, from the thin armbands to the dozen or so bangles, not including the bright necklace, that was made of shining jewel beads. In her ears were large disks about the size of a toddler's palm.
"Who is this, Brother?" the girl asked, looking at Minerva and blinking her bright eyes.
"She is the teacher Laure saw." he grinned, and she beamed at McGonagall, sweeping into a wide curtsy, her crimson skirt's gold-disk fringe clinking.
"It is nice to meet you, Ma'am. I am Naramine, daughter of Eleazar."
Minerva nodded to the girl regally.
"It is a pleasure, Miss Naramine."
They continued on, with the leader's daughter skipping ahead and signing along with the voices of the band that was scattered around the clearing.
They came upon an all-black tent, larger than the others, and Naramine paused, wiping her feet on a woven mat in front of the entrance while a boy ran in to announce their arrival. Soon, he came back out and announced that they could enter, and Minerva was lead into the gypsy leader's tent.
Once inside, the large tent seemed drastically out-of-proportion, with the spacious rooms divided by cloth curtains.
"You come to speak with me, Lady McGonagall?" came a deep voice, and the two younger people stepped aside to reveal a large man in all black. His thick beard had a silver streak through the middle, a sole sign of his age. He also had a mane of thick black hair descending below his shoulders, which also had various silver strands in it. There were a multitude of beads and charms scattered throughout his hair, and a large gold hoop in his left ear. He was standing at a table covered in charts and maps, the dark tent lit by various hovering orbs of light.
"Yes, I have. I presume you are Eleazar Rhuus, of the west-European gypsy clan?"
"I am." his eyes crinkled in a smile, and he gestured to a chair before his desk, which seemed hand-carved out of some dark hardwood.
"Thank you." she said, sitting. The younger ones greeted their father and went back out of the tent, in the girl's case to the dance and in the boy's to the edge of camp to patrol.
"It has come to attention that your clan has a large number of magical youth, Sir Rhuus." she began, and he laced his fingers together, before propping up his chin on them.
"Aye. And what of it?"
"Well, the headmaster for Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry has asked me to supply you with these." she pulled a thick bundle of letters from her shirtsleeve, tied together with a thin black string.
He took them and observed the seal on the bottom end and the addressee on the top.
"What are these?" he asked patiently, placing the bundle carefully on the desk.
"They are acceptance letters to Hogwarts School, written by the Headmaster Albus Dumbledore himself. Those specifically are addressed to various children in your clan."
His bushy eyebrows ascended. "My clan's children are being accepted into the school? Why? We have not yet received this courtesy, what is the reason for it's beginning?" he seemed slightly suspicious.
"Your people recently gave sanctuary to a few of our school's trusted contacts. You may remember them, last summer. Four men by name Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Kingsley Shacklebolt, and Alastor Moody."
He nodded. "Yes, those four. The man who transformed into a great black dog, a werewolf, a dark-skinned man, and a battle-scarred aging one. They were being stalked by a band of Death-Eaters. I lost five men that day. Those four stayed for a total of three days and nights before leaving."
She nodded. Good, so she had found the right people.
"You will consider our offer? We have the best teachers in the United Kingdom of the magical variety. In those letters the children will be informed of school rules, and the supplies they will need for their age range. If you like, we may send other teachers to accompany some children at a time to Diagon Alley, where they may purchase their books and supplies."
"Yes. I will hold a council, but I believe that it will be in our best interests to allow our children attend this school. Where will the rest of us be staying? Surely you did not expect us to allow our children to go to a strange place unattended. The camp will move with them."
"Of course. The school's grounds are quite spacious, and we have spare rooms in the castle if you wish for your clan to reside indoors."
"the grounds of the castle will be land enough. Now, as for provisions, will the school be providing?"
"For your clan or for your children? We have more than enough for your clan. Though the great hall is quite limited in space, and those not attending classes would not be able to dine with the students."
"that is acceptable. If you wish to stay for the night, I could find room for you- I will announce the council's decision on the morn." his voice rumbled as his tawny yellow eyes blinked slowly at her.
"That would be excellent, Mister Rhuus." she nodded her head at him, standing and allowing him to lead her to the door.
As she was left in her tent, Minerva began to become a bit overheated in the tropical climate that the Rhuus seemed to prefer. She walked to the fireplace provided and grabbed a handful of Floo powder.
"Hogwarts Headmaster's office!" she said clearly.
Sticking her head in, she was greeted with a view of Albus's study.
"Ahh, Minerva. Have you any news considering the noble Rhuus?"
"Yes Albus, they have agreed to counsel, but Eleazar is supportive of the children being accepted into Hogwarts. He also expects for the rest of the gypsies to be given land on the grounds on which to live when their children are in classes. They are fine with eating separately but as their hunting will be restricted, we must provide them with food. I suggest informing Minzy that the gypsies will be eating separately."
"Worry not, Minerva, I shall. When do you plan on returning?"
"I believe within a few days, I will most likely return with our newest guests."
"Ah, that would be satisfactory. Take care of yourself, Minerva."
"Of course, Albus."
yes i know, it's a short chapter, but hey at least i updated something! hahaha
as soon as i find my flash drive, i will be uploading a buttload of new stories onto here, so get ready everyone!
go ahead and review, i don't care what sort you give, the ones demanding i update, the ones telling me how much you hate/love it, whatever. as long as you give me a reason for your likes/dislikes! X)
Also, go ahead and tell me what you think about;
the Rhuus clan
magical gypsies/nomads in general
anything else really x)