A/N While I do try to stay as well to the actual thing as possible, which is a little difficult since I am shipping in this story, I am adjusting some things. I realize exactly the time frame I set this in finally, as stated before, during the Jack the Ripper arc and it will probably feed into other ones, all set in the same year somehow XD I will be fixing a previous mistake I made with this chapter here, although a lot of you may not see it as a mistake :3
7: Drastic Measures
I sat at the Gazebo in the morning a bit disheveled and tired. I had ended up with difficulty sleeping because of the matter at hand. The biggest issue in my head was not letting Cheslock get involved. I cannot let him get himself into this mess. I looked over at the others, I can't bring up anything like this with the fags around, being prefects were constantly surrounded by someone. I looked around, I could perhaps speak to one of them alone but I won't be able to manage a meeting of all of us without arising suspicion.
"Ah, I'm in a mood today!" Edgar announced. "Gregory, perhaps draw me in an elegant pose?"
An idea clicked. I nodded and he struck a pose while Lawrence lectured him about the rule on last name biases. I sketched him in his pose, leaving subtle marks that would spell something out that only his skill in poetry should notice. I took it upon myself to learn a bit of poetry basics after that letter we'd received. I tore the finished product out of my sketchbook and handed it to Maurice Cole who gave it to Redmond. Redmond admired it at first but his face changed upon seeing the message. He returned back to happiness and smiled.
"Wonderful yet again, Violet." He said reclining in his lounge chair.
"We should prepare for classes they will start soon." Cole said.
"Cole is right, Bluer, we should make our way to the classroom." Clayton added. Both prefects stood and Greenhill and Midford soon followed after they racked Greenhill's weights. I turned to Cheslock, who had been quiet the entire time.
"It's not like you to remain so quiet, is something a matter?" I asked. He looked at me but shook his head. He opened his mouth and pointed at it.
"I-I don't understand." I replied. He sighed. He extended a hand and pointed at my sketchbook. I nodded and handed it to him, pocketing the charcoal and giving him a pencil. He quickly wrote down.
"Oh, you've lost your voice. How did that happen, you weren't yelling were you?" I asked. He shook his head and sighed, writing down that he is prone to it.
"Well then, I will escort you to the infirmary then." I said. I looked at the sketchbook again after getting it back from Cheslock.
"You're calligraphy is surprisingly beautiful." I commented. He stumbled back a bit and rubbed the back of his head. I looked at him.
"Come on now, we'll get you fixed up." I said smiling. He gave me a look and nodded.
I will keep the darkness of the world away from him as much as I can. I will keep this vow and do anything to uphold it. I took his hand and led him through the halls, to run into people who are last ones I'd wanted to encounter today.
"Oh, Violet, you will be late for class, where are you rushing to?" Prof. Slingby asked, Knox and Spears with him. I looked at them.
"My fag Cheslock as lost his voice, I'm escorting him to the infirmary." I said. They nodded and stepped aside calmly, returning to a conversation about the Jack the Ripper incident and overtime, and their dislike of it.
I opened the door to the infirmary and told the nurse of Cheslock's condition. She quickly examined his throat.
"It is inflamed, but this herbal medicine here should clear it up by the day's end. It's nothing to worry about; it would have gone away on its own either way." She said smiling. Cheslock took some of the medicine and made a horrible face but no sounds came out of his mouth. I smiled and she chuckled.
"It may not taste good but it works, by the end of the day you should be perfectly fine. Refrain from attempting to speak the rest of the day." She said. Cheslock nodded.
"You can use that sketch book to communicate for the rest of the day." I said. He smiled as he walked over to me.
"I'll accompany you to your next class as well." I said. He looked at me surprised but nodded.
"Is that an issue?" I asked. He shook his head frantically, he wrote on the paper "No Sir". I sighed.
"You're still a mystery to me." I said. "But as the prefect of the purple house and, more importantly, your... partner, I suppose it's something I must do." I grabbed his hand. His face flushed but he smirked and me and lead the way.
He walked into his classroom and I informed the professor of Cheslock's condition and made for my own class. I saw Redmond as I made my way and stopped. Our eyes met and he nodded.
"The professors are looking into the disappearances…" Edgar mumbled, repeating what I had inferred in the drawing. I nodded.
"I studied a little of poetry after the letter we got and decided it would have been the easiest way to tell you without the others knowing." I said. "Cole did not catch on did he?"
"No, he didn't notice a thing." Edgar said. "What can we do, we can't confront them about it that would only confirm our guilt."
"We must try and lead them on a wild goose chase." I said sighing, rubbing my temples. "It's the only solution I could think of, perhaps Bluer could think of something better."
"Did you tell the others?" Edgar asked.
"I didn't have the chance, even if I didn't have another matter to tend to, they were with their fags or other students, there was no opportunity." I said. A ringing rang through the campus.
"We must attend our classes." Edgar said, he turned and walked away.
"We will get Greenhill and Bluer involved and we will figure out a solution to this." He said. I nodded and turn down another hall to get to my class. I have enough to worry about with Cheslock, I can't let this distract me from him again.
I stood in front of the classroom waiting for Cheslock to file out with the other students. He was the last in the room, staying with Professor Knox. I walked in and greeted the two.
"How are you feeling now?" I asked worriedly. He smiled but shook his head.
"No improvement then… pity," I said, "I have prepared tea for you to drink to help with this." He looked at me with widening eyes.
"Once you are finished with the professor we will go to the gazebo." I said. I looked at Knox who grinned and gave me a small nod. I stood at the doorway listening.
"So, Prefect Violet there hasn't been acting suspicious or anything?"
That infuriated me. He has nothing to do with this. I suppose they're pestering the other fags as well. Will they're dirty tactics not end? I suppress my anger with a deep breath and exhaled slowly. I turned over and smiled as Cheslock stood smiling at me as he walked over.
"Come on then, I prepared the tea myself and we wouldn't want it getting cold." I said. He nodded and held out a page. I took it.
"That's sweet but it is the least I can do for my fag." I said smiling. He grinned happily and hugged me in the empty hallway. I prying myself away from him and sighed.
"Again, sweet but I'd rather fix you up before we get romantic." I said adjusting my bow and hood. He rubbed the back on his head and laughed, a small weak laugh coming from his mouth.
"The quiet doesn't suit you." I commented as I grabbed his hand and lead him to the gazebo. I prepared a second chair beside mine in the gazebo and handed him his tea.
"So you've lost your voice, that's a shame." Redmond said. "That must be the matter Gregory was so worried about earlier." I shot him a look and he let out a giggle. I looked back to Cheslock and smiled.
"The tea is to your liking?" I asked. He nodded and smiled back at me and I sat down in the chair besides Cheslock, returning to my usual position to draw in a second sketchbook.
"Today has been rather pleasant." Greenhill broke the silence. "Nothing unusual, just a peaceful day."
"It has been rather normal, especially after the last few days." Bluer said, his nose buried in a book. I looked at Edgar and could tell by his look that he hadn't had an opportunity to fill them in either.
"Violet, a new student has requested to see you." I turned to see Agares standing there. I sighed and stood.
"Would you like to accompany me?" I asked Cheslock who nodded and stood with me. I walked beside him as we followed Agares to a room where a single student sat patiently waiting.
"While it was a peculiar request, do to his family line I decided it was a request I could grant." Agares said. He turned to the boy.
"Once you are done here, please come to my office." The boy turned to face us and nodded, and I recognized him.
"You are that boy that was here during the tour, Harcourt." I said. He nodded.
"Thank you for remembering me, Prefect Violet." He said. He took in a deep breath and stood.
"I wanted to thank you for what you had said to me and for your help during the tour." Harcourt said modestly. "After that, I decided I was going to attend this school, I was sorted into the Scarlet Fox dormitory."
"That's wonderful." I said, happy for the frail boy that was there before me.
"This is my fag, Cheslock." I said. "Cheslock, this is a boy, now student, who was here for the tour. He had informed me of the chaos that was erupting when you and Cole lost control of the crowds and we chatted for a bit."
Cheslock nodded and extended a hand for a quick and awkward hand shake. Joanne seemed a little taken aback by Cheslock's appearance.
"He is much nicer than he looks and seems, right now he's a little upset because he has lost his voice for the day." I said. Joanne gave me a look of realization and relief and bowed quickly.
"Thank you for your time and allowing me to do that, but I shouldn't keep Mr. Agares waiting any longer." He said before rushing out. He gently closed the door behind him and I gave a small smile.
"He's a nice kid." I said. Cheslock gave me a look and held up a page.
"I don't like him"
"Could you possibly be jealous?" I asked after reading the page. He looked away, blushing. I laughed a little.
"That is adorable, not what I expected from you." I said between small laughs. "I knew you were very competitive with the other dorms, but not the jealous type."
He grabbed onto me and shook me a little.
"Oh calm down," I said pulling his arms off me. Just as I did he wrapped them around me and pulled me into a hug, were I again realized he was taller than me. It took me by surprise but I quickly hugged him back.
"This may be a sweet moment, but we do have to return to the gazebo." I said. Before I could continue he stole a hasty kiss and I felt myself turning red.
"I-I… one-once again you have left me speechless." I said. HE laughed again, a strong sound coming out this time.
I sighed and laughed a little with him.
"You have quite a lot of adorable quirks you know." I said grabbing his hand to lead him as I left the room. We walked down the hall in a comfortable silence as Cheslock was fidgeting behind me.
"What's a matter?" I asked looking back. He was trying in a futile effort to wipe the transferred lipstick off his lips. I laughed at his adorable antic and stopped, pulling out my handkerchief and wiping him up yet again.
"You're like a child, will I end up constantly cleaning you off?" I asked. He laughed and I sighed, holding out the purple cloth to him again.
"You'll have to launder this once more." I said. He took it with a grin on his face and stole another kiss. I lost my balance as he leant into me and we fell back onto the wood floor. I opened my eyes after the fall to find myself inches away from Cheslock, both of us blushing fiercely, our arms tangled together. We struggled to pull apart from the mishap.
"Oh, my, my, an incident?" I looked over and saw Professor Slingby walking towards us. We immediately pulled apart.
"It was just an incident is all, freshly waxed floors." I said adjusting myself. I let out a heavy sigh and looked at Cheslock, who was disheveled like myself, but was grinning like madman even with the red tint in his cheeks. I let show a small smile and turned back to the professor.
"Well, be careful then, we don't want you getting hurt." He said. "That would be a crime."
I froze for a second at the implications of what he said and quickly thought of a rebuttal.
"That's exaggerating it." I said. I turned towards away from him towards Cheslock.
"If you'll excuse us we have to be at the gazebo now." I said, grabbing Cheslock's had and rushing to the gazebo. I felt Cheslock prodding my side as we rushed and I let out an exasperated sigh.
"If you're going to ask what that was about, just say that the new advisors all make me incredibly uncomfortable." I said. "They just seem like they're trying to know every little thing that's going on the campus."
Cheslock let out a sigh and held up a page.
"You're over thinking things, just calm down. You can tell me anything?"
If only I could.
"That's it," I said, "They make me uncomfortable, like Professor Sutcliff did."
He laughed, holding up a sign.
"That guy was a bigger fruit that Redmond."
"That's surprisingly true." I said. I didn't realize until now that even though we'd stopped moving we were still holding hands. It didn't try to pull away though, it felt right.
We continued communicating, since he still couldn't quite talk yet, about random topics as we walked back to the gazebo, holding hands the entire way.
"Th-that was a great day." I jumped at Cheslock's voice behind me as we walked back to the dormitory at the end of the day. I grinned as I looked back at him.
"Happy you can talk again, I missed the sound of your voice." I said. He grinned big.
"I guess I am the jealous type, I won't forgive that Harcourt so easily for being so buddy, buddy with you." He said, his voice back in its full power surprisingly quick. I sighed.
"We hardly ever spoke; he only wanted to thank me." I said. "He's in another dorm too, just continue being super competitive with the others." I said. I heard him make a sound like "tch" behind me and grab me from the back as soon as the last student turned into their room and closed the door behind them. I jumped.
"You're incredibly affectionate today, not that it's bothersome or unappreciated." I said. He laughed.
"You're such an uptight noble," He said laughing, "Even though I may be of noble blood, I spent more time around the lower class servants than my actual family, so I can tell the difference."
I looked at him puzzled. "What is the difference than?"
"Nobles always use perfect grammar and perfect pronunciation, and you use a lot of larger words a lot of lower class people wouldn't know." He said.
"I don't see that as a bad thing, they cannot afford an education and upbringing like we've had, so they behave and grow to be different types of people." I said. I gave him a sympathetic look. "To think that you had the riches and lifestyle of a noble, but not the attention from your actual blood family, that is a crime."
"Calm down again, you're real feisty today." Cheslock said laughing. "I'm fine, I grew up in like the middle, and I know both ways they lived, although I'm still more familiar with the life of sheltered, rich boys I still know some things the others endure."
"You are always surprising." I said, "But it is rather difficult to walk with you latched on like that."
He let go quickly and apologized quickly.
"So you may have had the money of a noble, but you didn't have a true family you say." I said, looking at him as I stood in front of my dorm. "You had only the servants to pay you attention, so you know of different world perspectives, it make you a worldlier person. And you can call those servants who cared for your family, and the entire purple house if you wish." I smiled at him and he stole another kiss happily.
"That's a great thing to hear." He said smirking as he retreated into his room. I sighed.
"Three times in one day then, maybe I should invest in more smear proof makeup." I said as I closed my dorm door behind me.
AN I'd like a second beta please, since, unfortunately, I've lost communication with my current Beta reader so if anyone is interested PM me please! :3