The faculty and staff are gathered in the Common Room. Wanted posters featuring alternating portraits of the vampire Lysander and a rough sketch of the Wendell’s Dwelling assailant line the walls. Half a dozen Aurors stand strategically placed near every entrance.
There are two primary conversations in progress: The Dowling family – Samuel, Hannah, Clark and Robin – discussing the siege on Wendell’s Dwelling; and Deserand and Argiletum discussing the absence of prefects Ophelia Aaron and Victoria Navidson. Headmistress Kobayashi paces the room, visibly anxious. The remaining staff and student leaders (Vittoria, Scriba, Maldraco, Amelia, Rein, Cancer, Falchion, and Signa) make final preparations for the start of term.
The students enter and mingle with the faculty and staff.
Kraven enters, casually discarding a Muggle disguise. Deserand approaches him.
Deserand: Where have you been?
Kraven: I was at the PALM demonstration. (off her look) Don’t start. I have something you all should hear.
Kraven produces a Muggle recording device and turns it on. The noise of an angry mob is heard, quickly broken up by the voice of Oswald Kensington
Kensington (over radio): I can assure all of you, there is an open investigation pertaining to the events that occurred at Avistrum last term as well as the unfortunate attack on my colleague, Polonius Aberfoyle. As for Kraven Bloodthorne and the group known as the Dark Hunters, they were pardoned by former Secretary of Magic Greywolf last term, and unless new evidence is produced to implicate them in any wrongdoing or illegal use of magic, that pardon will stand.
PALM member (over radio): But Simon Drake has stated that Kraven Bloodthorne was involved in the destruction of Timmernak. Our children were taken from us by his hand and we demand justice! Bring Kraven in! Bring Kraven in! (mob chants)
Kensington (over radio): Citizens, I cannot express to you how dangerous Simon Drake is. Do not forget that he has admitted to executing the criminal Persephone and has gone out of his way to deceive both the Muggle government and ours. Simon Drake is not to be trusted, and for all the concerns I have about the goings-on at Avistrum Academy I can assure you that they are doing their best to protect their students and give them the tools and skills they need to protect themselves and contribute in a positive way to the wizarding world.
PALM member (over radio): You’re harboring fugitives! Avistrum should be closed down permanently! Simon Drake can save us!
Kraven turns off the recorder.
Kraven: It goes on like that for a while. The Aurors office eventually broke up the demonstration.
Clark: It was an unnecessary risk for you to go. Was it worth it?
Kraven: It wasn’t a waste.
Anton: You’re lucky you weren’t seen.
Kraven: Luck had nothing to do with it.
Samuel: At the very least it seems that Oswald is finally backing you up.
Dowling (eyeing Anton): Someone has to.
Anton: Careful, Dowling.
Hannah: Clark, I forbid you to fight in these halls. Just ignore him.
Sachiko: (thinking quickly) Students, let’s all gather in the Great Hall for opening ceremonies.
The faculty and students move toward the Great Hall. Clark and Anton keep their eyes locked on each other.
Anton: Mama’s boy.
Sophie: Let it go, Anton.
Kraven: You should listen to her.
Anton: Hey, Bloodthorne, where’s your pet?
Kraven: If your people weren’t able to track him then you don’t need to know.
OPENING CEREMONIES COMMENCE
Sachiko: Welcome, students, to another year at Avistrum Academy. I hope you all had a safe journey and even more so that you have a pleasant and productive term. Before we begin the Sorting Ceremony
there are a few items I need to address. I have a statement from the acting Secretary of Magic: “To the students and faculty of the Avistrum Academy—fond greetings from an old classmate. Let me begin by congratulating the First Years upon their admission! How proud you must feel and should be! Keep the magic alive for yourselves and the world in everything you do. I am sure you all know about the incidents that occurred at the end of last year’s term. I want you to know that the Department of Aurors and your Wizarding Government are doing all they can to keep you safe and learning behind the protection your castle’s walls. There will be Aurors among you this term to protect you, and I look forward to seeing you all when I come to visit very soon. Listen to your professors, enjoy your studies, and keep the faith!—Oswald P. Kensington, Acting Secretary of Magic–Avistrum Class of ’83.” I trust that all of you will show Mr. Kensington the respect he deserves upon his arrival. Secondly, you will see that the Archway is still present and for those of you who are new this year I must impress on you that the Archway is not to be touched or tampered with. If you have questions about it feel free to ask any of the faculty but do not touch it. Disregarding this rule will result in 100 points from your house. Finally, I would like to introduce someone to all of you, but before I do I need to assure you that the individual I am about to present to you is neither dangerous nor to be feared. Professor Boudreaux?
Aleator emerges from nearby, followed by Persephone and escorted by two Aurors. Persephone stays close to him as the students shy away from her. Amelia stands to object but Deserand pulls her back into her chair and tries to diffuse her.
Aleator: Students, stay calm. I would like to introduce you to a new ally of ours, Persephone. Persephone, say hello to our students.
Persephone (hesitant): Hello to our students.
Amelia: Why is she here?
Deserand: We thought she might be able to get us some information on Drake. I’m sorry we didn’t tell you.
Amelia: So am I.
Deserand: She’s known Drake longer than anyone else we can think of. I need you and all of you students to trust that we need her.
Amelia: Just make sure that Persephone stays far away from me.
Amelia marches off. Deserand sighs and follows her. Aleator turns to the students.
Aleator: I know that some of you may share the feelings of our Head Girl but I promise you we have gone through the proper investigations and have taken the needed precautions as it pertains to Persephone’s presence at our school. Anton, would you please make your statement?
Anton (stepping forward, hesitantly): After careful and rigorous investigation, the Auror’s Department has determined that the individual known as Persephone, having recently experienced a “shift in her metaphysical state,” shows a diminished capacity for magic and is currently not a threat to the population as a whole.
Aleator: Thank you, Anton. Now, that being said, I need to inform all of you that, while Persephone may not be a danger to us, she may still present a danger to herself. Her experience getting back to Avistrum has been…trying to say the least. I will be acting as a mentor to Persephone this term and I ask that all of you treat her as a guest. That goes for students and faculty alike. Is that clear?
Sachiko: Thank you, Professor Boudreaux. Now-
Persephone (noticing Sachiko): Hello, Batsy!
There is a ruckus near the main entrance.
Sachiko: Just once I would like to get through opening ceremonies without interruption. Rein, please see what that was. As I was about to say, our beloved Professor Voertigern is on assignment this term. However, I am proud to say that our very own Cynthis Scriba will be taking on his classes.
Rein heads toward the main entrance but is cut off by Professor Voertigern, who enters in a near fit.
Voertigern: I need to see the headmistress!
Rein: Easy there, professor.
Sachiko: Professor Voertigern? What are you doing back so soon?
Voertigern: I found it! I found the Fountain!
Rein: Uh, what fountain?
Voertigern: I found the Fountain! In the swamps, in Florida! I found the eternal spring!
Sachiko, Argiletum and Rein usher Trent out of the Great Hall. A few Aurors follow them.
Aleator: Give us a moment, please, students.
Argiletum returns and whispers something in Aleator’s ear.
Persephone: They found the fountain. Master won’t be happy.
Aleator: Ms. Jones, you’re needed in the infirmary.
Signa quickly exits toward the infirmary. After a moment Sachiko returns.
Sachiko: Well, it appears we may have Professor Voertigern with us this term after all, providing he recovers from his exhaustion. I apologize for any inconvenience, Scriba.
Scriba: Are you kidding? I’m thrilled.
Sachiko: Very well, then. Let’s begin the sorting!
Anton and Sophie try to stop Sachiko for an update but she dismisses them. Anton and Sophie pull the other Aurors in, convey a quick order then dismiss them back to their posts.
Sachiko: Congratulations to all of you and welcome to another year at Avistrum!
DRINKS AND SNACKS
Sachiko disappears to talk to Trent. An Auror enters with a package and stops near Aleator.
Auror: Deputy Headmaster, you have a delivery.
Aleator: Who is it from?
Auror: The courier didn’t know. I scanned it. There were no signs of magical properties.
Aleator: Alright, then.
Persephone (to Aleator): Do not trust the devils and dust.
Aleator opens the package and removes a small shiny STONE. Suddenly in EXPLODES in a shower of sparks and smoke. Clark and Deserand step forward to check on him.
Clark: Aleator, are you alright?
Aleator (coughing): I’m fine, it just caught me off guard.
Deserand: Are you sure?
Aleator: Yes, I feel…I feel…
Aleator puts his hand over his chest then puts his fingers to his neck.
Aleator: I feel a pulse.
Clark: You what?
Aleator: I have a pulse. I have a pulse!
The faculty watches Aleator in awe as he goes into a tactile stupor, knocking on and grabbing solid objects with increasing delight. He stops in front of Scriba and pulls her head to his chest.
Scriba: Oh my god, his heart is beating.
Anton (to the Auror): You said you checked it.
Auror: I did!
Sophie grabs a nearby napkin and retrieves the package, holding it out for Anton. Anton scans it.
Anton: What the…(points to two Aurors) You two, track down that messenger.
Kraven approaches, removing his glove.
Kraven: Let me have a look.
Anton: If that package is enchanted then it falls under our jurisdiction, Bloodthorne, we don’t need your help.
Kraven: Do you want to know where it came from or not?
Sophie: Let him try, Anton.
Anton hesitantly holds the package out for Kraven.
Clark: Be careful, Kraven.
Kraven: Shut up, Clark.
Kraven touches and…nothing happens.
Kraven: Well, it’s enchanted. I couldn’t see anything. Not one damn thing.
Everyone turns to see Aleator pigging out at the buffet table.
Aleator: Don’t judge me, I haven’t eaten anything in over 100 years.
Sachiko enters the hall with Voertigern, his composure greatly improved. Rein and Signa follow.
Sachiko: What’s going on here?
Aleator turns to Sachiko, smiles and crosses to Sachiko wrapping her in a huge hug. Sachiko is overwhelmed.
Kraven/Anton/Sophie: We’re working on it.
Anton: It’s official business, Kraven.
Kraven: And he’s our friend, tons of fun!
Aleator: People, I am fine!
Tension fills the room. Clark moves to back Kraven but Hannah and Robin hold him back. Johnny steps forward and comes face to face with Aleator, studying him. Slowly all eyes turn to them.
Johnny: Aleator, you seem happy to be…(to Deserand)…what’s that word?
Johnny: (back to Aleator) You seem happy to be corporeal again. If you’re happy, then I’m happy for you.
Aleator: Thank you, Johnny. I appreciate you saying that.
Johnny: (walking away, in a strange voice) Enjoy it while you can.
Aleator: Pardon me?
Aleator: What did you just say?
Johnny: I said I was happy for you.
Aleator: After that.
Johnny: I didn’t say anything.
Sachiko: Aleator, let’s get you looked at, just to be certain. Aurors, I would suggest getting that package to the Auror’s Department ASAP.
Anton: I couldn’t agree more, headmistress.
Anton hands the package to an Auror and the Auror leaves.
Sachiko: The rest of you, please resume your festivities.
Signa leads Aleator toward the infirmary. Persephone follows.
Persephone: Wait for me, gray man. (to a group of students) The stars will align soon. Don’t keep it secret.
Johnny watches Aleator leave, confused and worried, as the rest of the faculty resume their socializing.
Robin: Johnny, come with me.
Johnny: Yes, ma’am.
Robin leads Johnny toward a quiet corner of the hall.
Hannah (to Robin): Is the start of term always so…intense?
The rest of the evening continues without incident. Eventually the faculty excuses the students to their dorms and closes the main hall for the evening.
Students enter the main hall and are greeted by Kensington and the faculty. Kensington glad-hands with the kids, self-consciously touching the Chain of Office around his neck. Eventually Aleator appears with Persephone.
*Clark remains linked to Robin through most of the day, playing the part of “dutiful husband”
Aleator: Acting Secretary, good to see you again.
Kensington: You as well, Professor Boudreaux. I’m reluctant to say the same about your “colleague.”
Aleator: Oh, she’s doing fine. She’s adjusting, slowly. Persephone, I’d like you to meet Acting Secretary of Magic Oswald Kensington.
Persephone: Hello, Ozzie! (follows something invisible in the air) Toast?
Aleator: As I said, she’s adjusting. Slowly.
Kensington: Just keep a close eye on her. The safety of these students is my top priority, as I’m sure it would be for Polonius. And speaking of safety, I hear there was already a breach this term?
Aleator: I don’t know that I would call it a breach.
Kensington: An enchanted artifact makes its way onto the grounds and we don’t know who it came from. I struggle to find a more appropriate term. You’ve at least had yourself examined?
Kensington: And I trust the package this enchantment came in is now in the custody of the Aurors Department?
Aleator: It is. I assure you, Mr. Secretary, except for an insatiable appetite I feel better than I can ever recall and all is well here. You have my word.
Aleator extends his hand. Kensington shakes it.
Kensington: That’s acting secretary, and your word was never in question, Professor Boudreaux. But I can’t help but remember something my History of Magic taught me: there is no magic in this world that comes without a price.
Kensington excuses himself to the common room. Aleator leads Persephone towards one of the classrooms, slightly put out.
CLASS BLOCK ONE
Note: Each instructor should have a “second” for security.
After class Kensington meets with the children, telling them stories about his days as a student. Suddenly –
EVIL VOICE: Tel du accleev tenebra.
Sophie: Aurors, search the grounds!
The Aurors disperse while the faculty prepares to defend the students. Johnny winces in pain but no one seems to notice.
Kensington: I was told that every possible defense was in place.
Anton: They are.
Kensington: Then why do I find myself fearing for the safety of these students?
Kraven: Everything was calm until you showed up, Ozzie.
Kensington: (to Bloodthorne) Did you happen to notice last night that I went several rounds with PALM trying to keep them from burning you at the stake? Are you ever going to bury that hatchet?’
Kraven: You saw me there?
Kensington: Of course I saw you. I saw you before you woke up yesterday.
The Aurors return.
Auror: No incursion, ma’am. The defenses are sound.
Kensington: Not that I doubt the Aurors Department, Anton, but I would like to see for myself exactly what defenses you have in place. Governess, could I convince you to join me?
Robin: Absolutely, Mr. Secretary.
Kensington: Acting Secretary, please. I don’t want anyone to think I’m growing attached to this position.
Kensington glares at Clark and Kraven before offering Robin his arm and following the Aurors.
Clark: Say what you will, he’s sticking to his guns.
Kraven: Say what you will, I’d like to bury the hatchet with him properly.
Persephone: Master is good with mazes, he always finds a way in.
Aleator: Simon Drake is not your master, Persephone. We’ve talked about this.
Persephone: Oh. I forgot.
Aleator: It’s alright.
Johnny approaches Aleator.
Johnny: Aleator, I wanted to apologize for anything I may have said to offend you.
Persephone: The soldier speaks and says too much, he feels the Deeper Darkness’s touch.
Aleator: Calm down, Persephone. There’s no need to lose you head.
Johnny: (in a strange voice) You should get used to loss.
Aleator: What did you say?
Johnny stares at Aleator blankly.
Aleator: That’s it. Aurors?
Two Aurors approach.
Aleator: Escort Johnny to the infirmary and see that he is evaluated. After that I want you to place him under quarantine until we can determine whether or not he is threat.
Sachiko: What is the meaning of this?
Johnny: But Aleator, I’m your friend.
Aleator: I’ll explain to you in a moment, headmistress. Aurors, take him away.
The Aurors escort Johnny out of the hall. Sachiko pulls Aleator aside and they discuss Aleator’s actions.
CLASS BLOCK TWO
During class the professors start to become increasingly paranoid. *NEED TO MATCH SCRIPT NEEDS AND CLASS BLOCKS!! Would like to see Voertigern here, his lesson is a CSI type thing based around his findings from the Fountain of Youth.
After class the professors are evaluated by the Aurors and their peers. Kensington approaches Sachiko.
Kensington: Sachiko-sensei, it is with great difficulty that I must say that I have some concerns about your faculty.
Sachiko: We’ve taken what precautions we can. If you have any ideas on what more we could do I would love to hear them.
An Auror approaches with an OWL in hand.
Auror: Secretary Kensington, an OWL just arrived for you.
Kensington opens it and smiles.
Kensington: I may have one idea, headmistress. If you would excuse me.
Sachiko: Where are you going?
Kensington: To get reinforcements.
Kensington leaves. The students are dismissed for lunch.
Students return from lunch and see the faculty gathered in mass. The faculty parts and we see Kensington has returned with Professor Aberfoyle, who now requires the use of a cane.
Sachiko: Students, please welcome our Secretary of Magic Polonius Aberfoyle.
The students and faculty applaud.
Aberfoyle: Thank you, students, and thank you, friends and colleagues. Believe me it is very nice to be anywhere besides a hospital bed and especially nice to be back at Avistrum. I want to take a moment to thank you students for your prayers. I’m obviously not 100% yet but I am getting there and I don’t
believe I would be without all the positive energy you’ve been sending my way. I also want to thank my opponent, if you can call him that, Oswald Kensington, for keeping vigil over me and the post of Secretary of Magic for all these months. I’m not sure that either was completely voluntary but I am eternally grateful for everything you have done, Oswald.
Kensington: I can’t say it was my pleasure, Polonius, but it needed to be done and I hope I executed the office as well as you will.
Kensington removes the Chain of Office and paces it around Aberfoyle’s neck. The faculty applauds.
Aberfoyle: Alright, I’ve kept you students from your studies long enough. Get to work. Anton, may a have a word?
Anton: What can I do for you, Mr. Secretary?
Aberfoyle: I’m told that we’re missing a couple of our prefects. Would you be good enough to send a few of your people to their homes and make sure that they are alright?
Anton: Right away, sir.
Sachiko: We’ve already sent OWLS to their homes.
Aberfoyle: We’re in the middle of a war, Sachiko. I don’t think physically verifying the location of our prefects would be considered an overreaction. Do you?
Aberfoyle walks away. Kensington silently reassures Sachiko before following him.
CLASS BLOCK THREE
Defense Against the Dark Arts: Lesson involving vampires – keep some focus on Lysander and his escape.
*Note: Aleator is Clark’s second for this class, so Persephone is there.
After class Persephone and Aleator move toward the Common Room.
Persephone: I like vampires. Vampires are my favorite.
Aleator: History is my favorite.
Persephone (sees Amelia): Pixie was Master’s favorite.
Persephone: Master loved his pixie.
Amelia: What the hell did you say to me?
Aleator: Amelia, calm down-
Amelia draws her wand on Persephone.
Amelia: Say it again and I’ll make sure you stay gone this time!
Persephone: Pixie’s very angry.
Amelia: Shut up, witch!
Deserand: Amelia, put your wand down! Now!
Amelia turns her wand on Deserand.
Amelia: Why do you keep defending her? Do you not remember everything she’s done, who she works for!?
Deserand: She doesn’t work for Drake anymore, Amelia. Put the wand down.
Amelia: I will put the wand down when she answers for what she’s done!
Kraven steps in front of Deserand, right in the line of fire.
Kraven: If you want to punish Persephone for what she’s done then you have to punish me, too. I was at Timmernak, I destroyed that school, and I committed crimes that I don’t want to remember. But I was there, just like she was. So if you need to put someone down, you might as well start with me.
Kraven inches closer to Amelia as he speaks until finally he is right in front of her. Rein and Maldraco sneak up on either side of her. Maldraco trips and Amelia turns on him. Kraven snatches the wand out of her hand as Rein and Maldraco grab Amelia by the arms and legs.
Sachiko: Get her to Signa and have her sedated.
Amelia screams as Rein and Maldraco haul her away.
Perspehone: Pixie went poof.
Aleator: Be quiet, Persephone. Kraven, are you alright?
Kraven (tosses Amelia’s wand to Deserand): I’m better than I would have been if Maldraco’ s clumsiness hadn’t distracted her.
Deserand: I don’t believe she would have actually hurt anyone.
Kraven: I do.
Kraven shows that he grabbed the wand with a gloveless hand and walks off.
Clark: Come on, Robin, let’s go check on Amelia.
Clark and Robin leave as the rest of the faculty take in the gravity of the situation.
CLASS BLOCK FOUR
During class the instructors start to get even more paranoid, imagining spiders or bugs crawling on them and completely disrupting their own classes. Clark tries to restore order and does so a little aggressively, even threatening one of the other teachers.
After class Sachiko stops Clark in the hall.
Sachiko: Professor Dowling, I need to talk to you about the content of your class.
Clark: What was wrong with the content?
Sachiko: It wasn’t so much the content as it was your conduct. You need to mind your treatment of your peers.
Clark: With all due respect, headmistress, I will teach my class in whatever fashion I deem necessary. If someone is being disruptive, even a member of this staff, then I will take measures to stop the disruption. And frankly, I feel that some semblance of order would do this academy some good.
Sachiko: Are you implying that I don’t know how to run this school?
Clark: I didn’t say that, but now that you mention it-
Clark: Robin, this is between me and Sachiko.
Robin: I don’t care, you do not get to speak to her that way.
Sachiko: I can take care of myself, Robin.
Clark: That’s debatable.
Kraven: Clark, maybe we should take this conversation elsewhere.
Kraven: Your behavior during class was a little excessive, and uncalled for.
Argiletum: This coming from someone who burned down an entire school.
Kraven: Is there something you want to say, Mordecai?
Argiletum: Quite a few things, now that you mention it.
Kraven: Well, bring it on, bookworm.
Clark, Robin and Sachiko continue to bicker.
Argiletum: I shouldn’t have to say anything, Kraven. You know what you did at Timmernak.
Kraven: And you know that I was Imperiused when I did it. Do you actually think I would destroy a school with children inside of it if I was in my right mind?
Argiletum: Yes, and you should be turned over to the authorities immediately! Or better yet, we should turn you over to PALM and let them have their way with you.
Deserand: You are out of line, Mordecai!
Aleator enters with Persephone.
Aleator: What the blazes is going on here?
Maldraco: Um, the wizarding equivalent of Jerry Springer.
Aleator: I wasn’t asking you, Maldraco.
Maldraco: What, just because I’m a groundskeeper I can’t point out the obvious?
Rein: Pointing out the obvious is about all you can do.
Maldraco: I’m not the one who got Stupefied last year. (to Aleator) And I also didn’t put my best friend under quarantine.
Aleator and Maldraco start bickering as the others continue to rant. The other faculty members start to side with their peers as Anton and Sophie summon the other Aurors to break them up. Finally Aberfoyle and Kensington enter the hall.
Aberfoyle: Stop! All of you stop this arguing right now! This is an academy of sorcery and you’re turning it into a circus! This is a dangerous time for every witch, wizard and Muggle on this planet, a time when vigilance and sound judgment should be our highest priority, yet the lot of you stand here bickering at one another in front of the very students you are supposed to protect! This is unacceptable! The war is out there, not in here! Students, you are dismissed until the Quidditch Tournament. Headmistress, Deputy Headmaster – I’ll see both of you in private, now. The rest of you separate and get your heads right.
Sachiko and Aleator sheepishly approach Aberfoyle, Persephone following close behind the Deputy Headmaster.
Aberfoyle (spotting Persephone): Just the two of you, Aleator.
Aleator: Someone needs to stay with her.
Kensington: I’ll keep an eye on her, Polonius.
Aberfoyle: Thank you, Oswald. The two of you follow me.
Sachiko and Aleator follow Aberfoyle out of the hall. Kensington offers Persephone a chair which she stares at, puzzled. The rest of the faculty slowly breaks up as the Aurors guide the students out of the hall.
DARK WIZARD’S BALL
Students enter and see the faculty lined up to meet them, all of them looking very sheepish. Amelia has returned but looks exhausted. Aberfoyle and Kensington stand off to one side. Sachiko and Aleator step forward.
Sachiko: Students, on behalf of the entire faculty and staff I want to apologize for the display we put on last night.
Aleator: It was unprofessional and unpleasant. We have no excuses. We hope you all accept our apology and give us another chance to provide you the education you deserve.
An Auror approaches Aberfoyle and Kensington.
Auror: Sirs, there is a rather loud and unkempt man asking to enter the school.
Scorpio (from outside): Hello! Is anybody in there?
Aberfoyle: Let him in.
The Auror waves his wand towards the entry and Scorpio enters.
Scorpio: What’s up, ladies? What’s up, kids? (notices Aberfoyle) Hey, Mr. Secretary, you’re back on your feet. Almost. (notices Kensington) Ozzie! If I’d known you were here, I’d have brought you a fish!
Aberfoyle (aggravated): Scorpio. Thank you, professors. You are dismissed to your classes.
The faculty leaves.
Kensington: Students, you are dismissed as well.
The students head toward their classes.
Scorpio: What the hell happened here? Why’s everyone so glum?
CLASS BLOCK 1
*Note: Classes involve more CSI type stuff regarding Simon Drake.
After class Sachiko and Aleator meet with Aberfoyle and Kensington. Suddenly-
EVIL VOICE: Um maten rash, ta tuluvas all.
The Aurors spring into action. As they search the ground a series of screams, male and female, echo throughout the school. The Aurors return.
Sophie: Did you find anything?
Auror: Nothing. All the defenses are in place and untouched.
Aberfoyle: Oswald, you said you checked the defenses yesterday?
Kensington: I did and I have to say, I think someone could get into Alcatraz before they could get into this academy. I hate to suggest this but, is it possible that Drake has gotten to one of the faculty?
Aberfoyle: You’re suggesting that a member of this staff is working with Simon Drake?
Kensington: We have to rule out every option, Polonius. There is obviously a threat present at the school and these children are our responsibility.
Aberfoyle: I suppose you’re right. Anton, I want you and I to interview the faculty and staff one by one.
Sachiko: Polonius, I must protest.
Aberfoyle: And I must insist. I’ve already met with you and Aleator, I will let the two of you proceed with your classes. Professor Voertigern, can we start with you?
Voertigern: I suppose.
Voertigern follow Aberfoyle and Anton out of the hall. Clark approaches Kensington.
Clark: Be careful, Kensington. You’re on the verge of starting a witch hunt.
Kensington: I can assure you, Clark, that-
Clark: Your only concern is the safety of these students. I believe you, I just hope you don’t go to drastic measure to prove it.
Clark walks away as the students gather for their next classes.
CLASS BLOCK 2
During class each member of the faculty is taken away and interviewed by Aberfoyle and Anton.
After class an Auror approaches Kensington, a small box in hand.
Auror: This arrived for the headmistress.
Kensington: Has it been scanned?
Auror: Yes, sir.
Sophie: So was the one that Aleator received at opening ceremonies. Let me open it.
Kensington (taking the box): I’ll open it. My apologies, Sophie and Madam Headmistress, but you’re both too valuable to put in harm’s way.
Kensington opens the box and…nothing happens.
Kensington: And that’s that. Headmistress?
Kensington offers the box to Sachiko. She takes it and pulls a note from the box.
Sachiko: “My dearest headmistress, a gift to celebrate your new position. I thought you would want it back. Regards, Simon Drake.”
Sachiko spies something else in the box wrapped in red tissue paper. She removes the tissue paper and bursts into tears, dropping the box and the item to the floor.
Deserand: What is it?
Clark picks up the object and his heart sinks.
Clark: It’s Ophelia’s prefect badge.
Clark holds out the badge for the others to see – there are bloodstains on it.
Kraven: Let’s go find her.
Clark: We’ll check on Victoria, too.
Clark, Kraven and Scorpio start to leave but Anton and the Aurors block them.
Anton: No more fugitive justice. Our people will take care of it.
Clark: Our student, our problem! If you want to stop us then you better draw your wand!
Anton draws his wand. The Dark Hunters draw theirs. Several Aurors draw and aim at the Dark Hunters.
Aberfoyle: Enough! Let them go, Anton.
Anton hesitantly drops his wand. The Dark Hunters start to leave.
Aleator: I’m coming with you.
Clark: Fine by me.
Kraven: (points to Persephone) What about her? She can’t leave the grounds.
Robin: Aleator, we need you here.
Aleator: I can’t just stay behind and wait.
Aberfoyle: Then stay behind and protect the students we still can. (to Clark) You three go. Be quick about it.
The Dark Hunters leave. Aleator turns to Aberfoyle.
Aleator: Polonius, please…
Aberfoyle sighs and turns to Anton, giving him a nod.
Anton (to Sophie): Get word to the Auror’s office, tell them to check every known residence for Ophelia Aaron and Victoria Navidson. Tell them to reactivate the Trace if they have to. I want those girls found alive.
Kensington: Aurors, clear the hall.
The students are ushered out by the remaining Aurors.
The students return to see the Dark Hunters and Aurors talking with Sachiko and Deserand, both women in tears and the Dark Hunters looking very grave. Aberfoyle and Kensington quickly usher the students to their classes.
CLASS BLOCK 3
Persephone briefly interrupts classes with more gibberish warnings.
CLASS BLOCK 4
As class ends an alarm goes off.
Sophie: We have a breach!
Anton: Everyone to your posts!
The faculty shields the children as the Aurors move into defense position. Johnny enters the hall, his hand clamped over a pain in his stomach.
Sophie: It’s just Johnny.
Aleator: He’s supposed to be under quarantine!
Anton: He was!
Aleator: Keep your wands on him!
The Aurors hold their aim. Robin and Aleator approach Johnny.
Robin: Johnny, what’s wrong?
Johnny: It hurts…
Robin: What hurts?
Aleator: I’m here, Johnny. I’m right here.
Johnny: Get away from me. Please!
Johnny screams and falls to his knees. A bright light emanates from him forcing the others to cover their eyes. Finally the light ebbs and everyone looks up to see Simon Drake standing next to Johnny’s limp body.
Sophie: It’s him!
Sophie’s wand flies from her hand. Drake whips around to one of the other Aurors and aims.
Drake: Avada Kadavra!
The Auror falls to the flood dead.
Drake: And…scene. (bows) I hope you’ll forgive the interruption but I require the prompt attention of this academy.
Clark and Kraven exchange a look then advance on Drake.
Drake: Clark, Kraven – let’s not pretend like you actually have a chance to hurt me.
Clark: You activated the lock down, Drake. You’re powerless and outnumbered, and you’re going to get your ass kicked.
Drake: One of these days you’ll stop underestimating me.
Kraven: Not today.
Clark and Kraven rush Drake and start beating on him relentlessly. Finally Anton stops them.
Anton: That’s enough! He can’t answer for what he’s done if his jaw is broken. And Drake, you will answer for what you’ve done. Aurors!
The Aurors don’t move.
Drake: Aurors, you heard the man.
All of the Aurors but Anton and Sophie draw real weapons on the faculty. A group of them retrieve Drake then neutralize Clark, Kraven and Anton.
Drake: As I said, someday you’ll stop underestimating me. Alohomora!
There is a loud bang as the front gate opens. Moments later Drake’s Regulators enter the hall, all of them wielding weapons.
Aberfoyle: You infiltrated the Auror’s offices. How?
Drake: Why should I tell you what’s in my power?
Clark: Even your power has limits, Drake.
Drake: Is that what the Elder told you? (off Clark’s look) I know you went to visit him. That old man’s faith is almost as misguided as yours, especially where a certain vampire is concerned.
Clark: You set Lysander free? Where is he?
Drake: He’s off somewhere being his normal wicked self.
Clark: You’re lying. Lysander would never join you.
Drake: And you think he would join yours after being captured, decapitated and mounted on your office wall? Unlikey, professor.
Sachiko: Where’s Ophelia?
Deserand: Don’t pretend that you don’t know who she is, you monster? What have you done with her?
Drake: You’re referring to the young lady I met with before the start of term. I thought I made it very clear what was done with her.
Sachiko: You murdering bastard!
Drake: Don’t act like I’m the only one who had anything to do with it, headmistress. Everyone has a choice and your prefect made hers.
Drake: She had something I wanted. At least I thought she did. Either way, she was not forthcoming with the information and it cost her. It’s a shame that your stubbornness and your ignorance are being passed down to your students.
Aleator: You have Victoria, too, don’t you?
Drake: I do, and if her life means anything to you then you will forgo the usual heroics and let my people work. (to his Regulators) Search them and search the grounds.
The Aurors and stooges begin searching the faculty and students, forcing them to turn out their pockets.
Aberfoyle: Leave the students alone, Drake!
Drake: You are not in a position to give orders! I admire the fact that you’re up and about so soon after your attack but there was really no need to make the effort. Not when Senator Oswald P. Kensington was here to play your part. (a beat) You know, Oswald, no one likes to be the runner-up, the one that everyone settles for. If you want to be Secretary of Magic for real, I can make it happen.
Kensington: If you think I want Aberfoyle’ s blood on my hands after he saved my life, Drake, then I underestimated your insanity.
Drake: I don’t need to kill Aberfoyle to remove him from the equation.
An evil whisper echoes through the halls. Aberfoyle freezes, his face twisted in panic, then suddenly collapses to reveal the Boogeyman standing behind him. Kensington tries to catch him, dropping his cane in the process, but the Boogeyman turns on him and stops him in place with a wave of his hand.
Drake: Hold him. (to the others) See? No blood needs to be spilt. Now that we’ve addressed your chief concern, what do you say to my offer?
Drake: Oswald, I’m offering you the chance to be Secretary of Magic, to wield that power and be the change you want to see in the world. All I ask in return is that you join the right side.
Kensington: War to the end, Drake.
Drake: Shame. You would have made a strong ally.
Aleator: You will never find allies at this academy.
Drake: Not even after the gifts I’ve bestowed? I trust that you received yours.
Aleator: You sent the package?
Drake: I did. How are you enjoying your new life?
Aleator: Why did you do it?
Drake: I can’t think of anything worse than the purgatory you’ve been living in, bouncing between life and death. I decided to do you a favor and push you back into the land of the living.
Aleator: Rather presumptuous of you.
Drake: Are you implying that you enjoyed your time as a dark wizard?
Sachiko: What are you talking about?
Drake: I’m talking about the Horcrux he created when he avenged the murder of his wife. (off the faculty reaction) None of you put this together? Not even you, Aleator? You killed a man out of rage, and when you did a piece of your soul was ripped away. However, being a soul it wouldn’t just up and vanish, it had to attach itself to something. It attached itself to your gun.
Aleator: So why not destroy the gun and kill me and be done with it?
Drake: I don’t take any pleasure in killing, Aleator, despite what you and your colleagues may think. I simply do what is necessary to achieve my goals. However, I can’t have you toying with the Void, not with the stakes as high as they are, ainsi, you are mortal again. (a beat) I get the sense that you haven’t fully grasped the implications of what opening that package has done.
Aleator: Why don’t you illuminate me?
Drake: Again with the ignorance. This is very simple, professor. What cannot pass through that Archway?
Aleator: Flesh and…(realizing)…no.
Drake: Yes. You tampered with the Void. The Void is mine. So I took measures to make sure that you never get to see your father or you wife ever again.
Aleator collapses in despair.
Boogeyman: Such sweet suffering.
Drake: These halls are filled with it. Isn’t that right, Kraven?
Kraven: Go to hell, Drake.
Drake: You first.
Boogeyman approaches Kraven.
Kraven: What do you want, ugly?
Boogeyman motions at Kraven with his gloved hand. Kraven screams and drops to his knees in pain.
Kraven: It’s burning…the school is burning…
Boogeyman: (moving to Deserand) And guilt.
Deserand: (crying) Ophelia. I’m so sorry.
Boogeyman: (moving to Robin) And doubt.
Robin tries to resist but finally she succumbs.
Robin: I need you, Clark, but you’re never here…you’re obsessed with saving the world but I need you, too…
Clark: Leave her alone, Drake!
Boogeyman: And my favorite, the one I’ve waited so long for…sinful pride.
Boogeyman channels all of his power against Clark, quickly sapping his strength.
Sachiko: Please stop!
Drake: Why stop now? He’s been doing this to you all term. Didn’t you notice that classes were suddenly far more interesting with all of you at each other’s throats?
Sachiko: What do you want from us?
Drake: I want you to look at your governess, your Deputy Headmaster and your professors and realize, once and for all that this war is already won, and every effort you make to challenge me will only cause you more suffering.
Sachiko: We’re not going to stand by while you terrorize the entire free world.
Drake: I am not a terrorist! I am a liberator! This is exactly the reason you cannot and will not beat me, you lack foresight. Our kind has hid in the shadows for centuries, terrified of being persecuted. And while we cower the Muggles spread like a disease. Every day they consume more resources and create more waste while giving nothing back to the Earth. The Muggles are incapable of running this world. In fact, they are close to destroying it. They are the terrorists, not me, and if we continue to hide from them we are doing nothing less than committing slow, self-inflicted genocide. It is time for us to reassert our dominance and save the Muggles from themselves.
Argiletum: By killing them? Enslaving them?
Drake: You’re willing to kill one person to save millions, at least Kraven is. I’m simply doing it on a larger scale. And more importantly, I’m doing it for the right reasons. Just try to imagine it: one government to sweep away nationalists divide, one language and one religion to obliterate cultural idealism, and one fair set of laws drawing a thick line between right and wrong. There would be no reason to fight and no entity to fight against. Humanity would be united by the simplest of bonds and we could give ourselves back to the Earth. The world would be at peace.
Clark: (fatigued) You’re waging a war to stop one, you lunatic!
Drake: And if reason were as powerful as terror I would pursue that course, but once again your lack of foresight justifies my actions! You will not listen to reason, so war is the only way I can save humanity.
Amelia: You’re a murderer. Lie to yourself all you want but don’t expect us to believe it.
Drake: So, the mouthy Head Girl has become a mouthy teacher’s assistant. I don’t expect you to understand this, child, but in pursuits of this caliber (steps on the Auror he killed) sacrifices must be made.
Persephone: (stepping forward) But why me?
Drake motions for Persephone to step forward and she does. He studies her, obviously moved by her presence.
Drake: Why are you here?
Persephone: They brought me back…to stop you.
Persephone points to Sachiko and the other faculty members. Drake turns to face them.
Drake: And you call me a terrorist? A monster? A lunatic? She was at peace and you took that away from her!
Deserand: You were controlling her even in the Void. We saw what you made her do to Aleator.
Drake: What are you talking about?
Persephone: I had to play the bride. I never got to be the bride before.
Drake: Persephone, why did they bring you back?
Persephone: They wanted me to help them. They wanted Master’s secrets. Master…I did everything you asked.
Drake: You tried, my dear, but you failed. You failed because they broke your mind, and you died because you had failed.
Persephone: But I loved Master.
Drake: I loved you, too, my sweet, like my own daughter. But not even I can stop the Fates.
Drake steps away from Persephone. One of his men returns with a book in hand.
Regulator: I found it! Master, I found it!
Drake opens the book and scans it.
Drake: Where did you find it?
Stooge: Lobostro common room. Had a note in it to a “Falchion.”
Drake: (to the faculty) Which one of you is Falchion?
Nobody responds. Drake approaches a group of students.
Drake: Do any of you know who Falchion is?
The students say nothing. The students point him out.
Drake: Falchion, show yourself now or their Good children. (gives them some candy)
suffering will be legendary.
Falchion raises his hand. Drake studies him.
Drake: Do I know you? (a beat, then) Yes, I do.
Drake turns to leave then stops and rounds on the faculty.
Drake: What you have done to my Persephone is…unforgiveable. However, I am going to take the high road. I have what I came for, I will see to it that your prefect gets returned to you unharmed. And to prove to you my generosity even further, I will give you one year to change your position. Join me and you will live. Continue to oppose me and understand that the decimation of this academy and its inhabitants will be the last act any of you have to regret. And to provide you with a little extra incentive, I’ll be taking a souvenir: the purest soul in the room.
Persephone: The stars will align. The stars…
Drake: Yes, my sweet, they will.
Drake extends his left hand in Johnny’s direction and, like a puppeteer, forces him to rise. Johnny is visibly distraught.
Johnny: I’m sorry, Robin. I’m sorry.
Drake: Time to go, Johnny. Say goodbye.
Robin: Johnny, no!
Drake leaves with Johnny and Boogeyman following close behind. Drake’s Aurors and stooges follow suit. Once the room is cleared the faculty, Anton, and Sophie tend to the students while Kensington assists Aberfoyle.
The students reconvene to see Kraven talking with Sachiko and Clark. Aleator and Persephone stand off to one end of the hall, Persephone clinging to him like a child.
Aberfoyle: Settle in, students.
The students do as they are told. Sachiko approaches the podium.
Sachiko: Students, before we move forward I feel we need to take a moment of silence and honor those that were lost to us this year.
Everyone bows their heads.
Sachiko: Thank you. Now, I would like to focus on some of the more positive elements of this term by presenting our House Awards.
Sachiko: Congratulations, everyone.
Aberfoyle: Headmistress, may I have a moment?
Sachiko steps aside and Aberfoyle steps forward.
Aberfoyle: In the interest of defeating Simon Drake and undoing everything he has set in motion, I would like to present to you Oswald Kensington as my newly appointed Vice Secretary of Magic and Wizarding Secretary of War. I’m going to let Chad and Rob work out how they want to approach this, I think it will be more natural if they get to develop this bit themselves.
Kensington: As my first official act as Vice Secretary of Magic and Wizarding Secretary of War I want to commend Captain Anton Tovoretski and promote him, effective immediately, to Chief Auror.
Anton steps forward and accepts his promotion.
Aberfoyle: On that same note, since our law enforcement has sustained such a heavy loss, and due largely to his continued pursuit of justice, even through unconventional means, I would like to immediately reinstate Clark Dowling as a Lieutenant Commander in the Department of Aurors.
Robin is stunned. Clark turns to Sachiko, uncertain.
Sachiko: This school needs you but the Auror’s need you, too. I have faith you can do both.
Kensington: I have to protest, Mr. Secretary.
Kensington: Do not reinstate Clark Dowling, Polonius. Promote him to Commander.
Aberfoyle: What do you say, Professor Dowling?
Clark: May I choose my own deputies?
Aberfoyle: I trust your judgment.
Kensington: As do I.
Aleator: I’d like to volunteer. (off Sachiko’s look) I don’t plan on stepping down as Deputy Headmaster but I feel I have more to offer beyond that. I would appreciate your blessing.
Sachiko: You have it.
Aleator: (to Clark) Professor?
Clark: It would be an honor. (to Aberfoyle) I would also like to name Scorpio Douglas as a deputy.
Aberfoyle: Noted and accepted.
Clark turns to Kraven.
Kraven: No. Headmistress – Mr. Secretary, may I?
They step aside and Kraven turns to the students.
Kraven: I don’t want to make more of this than is needed so I’m just going to treat you all like adults, as I always have, and say what I need to say. I am leaving Avistrum effective immediately. I am going to go rebuild Timmernak. Hopefully, that will appease some of these P.A.L.M. protesters and help our entire community get past what happened…what I did. (a beat) I am not perfect. I doubt I’ll ever win a popularity contest amongst my peers or my students. I like doing things my way and often without help, but this one time I want to ask all of you students for a favor: do not stop fighting. I may not be at Avistrum after tonight but I will continue to fight for everything this school stands for. I expect all of you to do the same. I have not taught you to bend to the will of others but to stand up for what you feel is right and you must continue to do so. Simon Drake said that he would return here in one year to either convert this academy or destroy it, and I believe he will. That gives you a year to prepare and I know some members of the faculty are already preparing workshops to be held in April. I want you to attend them, learn from this faculty, and prepare to face Drake next year and stop his reign of evil forever. Will you do that? (Students agree) Good. Make me proud. (A beat) You all know that I abhor sentiment but over the last couple of years this faculty and you students have helped me to see myself in a different way. I’m a better person for having had the opportunity to teach you and I thank you for that.
Kraven steps back. Deserand stands up.
Deserand: I want to go with you.
Deserand: You’re going to need help. I know you like to work alone but I am asking you to let me help you with this.
Kraven: (after a moment) I would like that.
The reality of Kraven accepting her help and leaving Avistrum hit Deserand instantly.
Sachiko: You have my blessing.
Deserand bows to Sachiko and steps to the podium.
Deserand: This is…sudden and very unexpected. I don’t know what to say to all of you. I suppose I would echo Professor Bloodthorne’s statements. Keep fighting. Be brave. Be safe. Keep studying and training so that you can protect yourselves against this evil. Do not let him win. (a beat) I also want to thank each of you for letting me be your professor. It has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.
Deserand turns to see Amelia staring at her.
Deserand: I guess Herbology is all yours.
Amelia hugs Deserand tightly. They break and have a silent goodbye before Deserand turns to leave.
Amelia: Professor Bloodthorne? (Kraven stops) I never thanked you for saving my life.
Kraven: You’ll get to it eventually. (turns to Clark) Hey, Clark.
Clark: What is it, Kraven?
Kraven: I’ll see you when I see you.
Kraven salutes him and escorts Deserand out of the school as the students applaud. Sachiko retakes the podium.
Sachiko: Students, you are dismissed.