<font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font>

May 10, 2012 9:30 PM
As she was looking over her notes of Sonora's past few Quidditch seasons, Coach Amelia Pierce had noticed that she had, at some point, fallen victim to an alphabetical bias to put Aladren on the pitch first. Having made this discovery, she immediately eliminated the Hawks as one of her options for the first two teams to play.

She also decided not to have Pecari go first since their roster was the last to come in, and she wasn't above petty retaliation for its tardiness.

That left Crotalus and Teppenpaw to play first, and she vaguely wondered if maybe she should make a habit of putting the two finalists up against each other during the next year's elimination rounds. It had shaken things up nicely last year, even if she would have preferred for her own house to make it further than they had.

She couldn't think about that today, though, because she needed to remain impartial while Crotalus played Teppenpaw. With Marissa Stephenson's graduation, Captain Melcher was now the most experienced captain leading her team and Crotalus would be fielding an untried Seeker. It was, Amelia thought with forced impartiality, going to be anybody's game. Neither team had won a game last year. Crotalus would be looking to redeem themselves. Teppenpaw would be even more eager to prove that they could win at all.

It was also anybody's game in beautiful weather. Amelia paused briefly to enjoy the warm sunlight, then continued carrying the trunk of Quidditch balls out to the center of pitch. The two teams were already gathered in clumps, listening to their captains' pre-game speeches. She gave them as much time as they needed, then called the two captains over.

"Today, we have Captain Kirstenna Melcher leading Teppenpaw and Captain Sam Bauer leading Crotalus. Please shake hands." After they had done so and returned to their respective teams, Amelia continued as she released first the snitch, then the bludgers, "Goals are worth ten points. Game ends when the snitch is caught, which is worth 150 points. Game begins with my whistle. Let's keep it clean, folks. On three." She picked up the Quaffle and readied to throw it into the air. "One. Two. Three. Tweet!" She blew into her whistle and tossed the Quaffle as high as she could.

She picked up her own broom and followed the balls and the players into the sky.

Quidditch rules and FAQs are available on the wiki. As always, minimum posting length applies, and clear detailed posts help everyone understand what is going on. Any additional questions should be asked on the OOC board. Have fun, folks!
0 <font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font> Game One: Crotalus vs Teppenpaw 0 <font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font> 1 5

<font color="red">Captain Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 11, 2012 2:16 PM
Sam resisted the urge to rub his hands together nervously as he looked around the Pitch, taking in the conditions they had to work with today. "Sun's out," he remarked. "That works for the rest of us, but you'll have to be careful, Cepheus. Don't let it blind you, or Pierce and Stratford will take your head off."

Or at least Kate would have an advantage, which Sam was reminding himself would be a very bad thing today. On any other day of the week, the Teppenpaw Seeker was his favorite cousin, but today, she was the enemy. Just like Kirstenna was normally a pretty girl, one he sometimes wished he'd never asked to the Ball and sometimes wanted to ask out again, but today, at the first of the Quidditch games for this year, she was the opposing captain - and the Keeper to his Chaser, which made it even more interesting. For a value of 'interesting,' anyway; more 'interesting' yet was how she and Kate both had more experience in a role than he and Cepheus did.

Surely, today, at Sonora, Teppenpaw girls were more dangerous than Beaters' bats. But they'd do all right.

"Teppenpaw," he announced, "has never won the Quidditch final that I can remember. Honestly, I don't remember off the top of my head the last time they even made it that far. My expectation is that you're all going to go out there and help me put them all right back on the ground today. Don't disappoint me in this."

His speech, which had no doubt been endlessly reassuring to the troops, over, Sam smiled, as friendly as could be, at the Crotalus team. "Good luck, everybody."

He smiled, too, at Kirstenna as he gave her hand a firm shake, just in case it was something that might throw her off her game a little. She was a good Keeper, so he and his could use every advantage they could get. "Good luck out there," he said pleasantly.

That was the last pleasant thing he aimed to do for a while. With the others, he mounted his broom, and with all the others he kicked off. Being captain meant much less once everyone was in the air and it had become anyone's game.

The Quaffle went up, and Sam went after it. The move succeeded, he ended up with the big red ball in his hands, and he dove quickly to avoid a yellow robe, either Chaser or Beater, he didn’t stick around long enough to see exactly which it was, before flying toward the Teppenpaw goals, rising again in the air for a bit before going lower in the air again and coming halfway back up before passing toward another red robe. Then, in case any Teppenpaws were still focused on him, he kept going up for a moment, hoping to give his hopefully Quaffle-bearing comrade a moment of breathing space before he looked, either to plan an interception or cover his teammate.
16 <font color="red">Captain Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> Let's go, Crotalus! 163 <font color="red">Captain Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 11, 2012 6:21 PM
Cepheus first awoke, he could already feel the adrenaline in his pure blood. He couldn't wait till the Quidditch match started and he was jiggling his leg up and down in all of his classes, a habit that he had broken two years ago. He'd never been this excited in his life. Of course, excitement is always easy to mistake for extreme nervousness and vice versa, so when Cepheus had changed into his Quidditch robes, his name printed on the back, had grabbed his fancy year-old broom, gloves and everything else he'd need for the match, he continued to feel excitement. And then he got onto the pitch.

Having never played Quidditch in an actual arena like this before, he was inexperienced. Last year he'd sat on the sidelines and watched every match go by in front of his eyes. Team practices were probably the closest he'd ever gotten to seeking competitively when it really mattered. Cepheus was a competitive person by nature, sure, but he'd never really had a chance to throw himself into Quidditch. And now he wasn't even certain if he could.

The excitement in his blood dropped suddenly to a quiver in his bones as Sam Bauer gave his pre-game pep talk. He could hardly nod his head when Sam spoke to him. Now he understood how Gareth had felt after making the Quidditch team last year. Cepheus had just so wanted the position on a real Quidditch team that he hadn't thought of the consequences. He hadn't thought there really was any. Even getting hurt was part of the glory.

It wasn't chilly now, it was a perfect day to play. But Cepheus could feel a chill within him. The excitement turned into nervousness was twisting his stomach, an unusual feeling for the usually haughty bloke. He swallowed audibly and stared at all of the students, staff, and faculty in the stands that had come to watch the match. He gulped again. There were so many people.

His pale hands were shaking and there were just minutes till the match started. He broke out into a cold sweat and felt his face flush under the scrutiny of the spectators. Oh, Merlin. 'Please don't let me die,' he thought to himself. 'On second thought, it would be better to die than to embarrass myself.' If he fell off his broom at any point in this match, he'd die of embarrassment. He'd stay in the hospital wing for the rest of the year. He'd never leave. He'd give up schooling forever. He'd--

Oh Merlin. The Coach was speaking and his hands wouldn't stop shaking. He mounted his broom earlier than his team mates. He didn't think he'd be able to stand much longer. He gulped again, trying to focus on his breathing and run his techniques through his brain. 'Nothing's working!' he screamed in his head, but it was too late for that. He was on the pitch and people were depending on him. The weight had never felt so heavy on his shoulders before.

The whistle blew and he felt the broom heavy in his fingers. He lifted into the air much too fast and went up much too high. He had to consciously lower himself again till he could see the Chasers racing around in pursuit of the quaffle. 'I'd better get a move on,' Ceph thought to himself, still trembling. He was getting light-headed and that was never a good sign. "Oh, Merlin," he sighed again under his breath, repeating those two words until they were like a prayer for something, anything, to happen. Something good, obviously. Cepheus took several deep breaths, keeping his blue eyes out for the snitch. Any glint of gold, please Merlin. Any glint of gold. Gold, like the snitch. Like my hair. Like the trophy. Merlin, like the trophy...

Something zipped by and Cepheus's neck almost snapped as he hurried to see what it was and to snap himself out of his daydreams. Now is not the time for that! Cepheus zoomed after it, trying desperately to see where it had gone. "Oh Merlin, oh Merlin, oh Merlin..." he muttered again under his breath. The air was being sucked out of him the more he spoke out loud, so he continued his mantra in his head, trying to regain his breath. Was the air always this thin up here? He was still somewhat light-headed. If he fell off his broom because he was bloody dizzy...Cepheus wanted to laugh at himself, but he could only stay helplessly in the centre of the pitch, head twisting around to catch any glimpse of gold. Gold, gold, go--

Goal! He zoomed after another glint, hoping and praying that he wasn't following some player with attractively blonde hair or a mirror strapped to their bloody head. It was awfully bright. Why did that sun have to shine so brightly? He would have prayed for a cloudy day to suddenly come upon them, but he knew he'd be praying for a sunny day right after. So he prayed nothing and followed the glint of gold that was now lost after his long and overwhelming thought process. He wanted to scream. He hated this with a passion. At least his ire was making him forget his nervous--too late. He'd thought of it again and he was once again very aware of the cheering spectators. Merlin. This is what professional Quidditch players did for a living. Cepheus decided then that he couldn't play Quidditch for a living even if he did have that perfectly small frame for a Seeker. Even if they begged him on their knees...well, maybe then...

'Pay attention, for Merlin's sake!' came his mental scream, and he tried to focus his blue eyes again. Gold, gold gold...anywhere? Gold? "I wish I was--" he began, but cut himself off when he saw yet another speck of gold. It was distant, but near, and he reacted quickly this time. Too quickly. "Merlin's sakes!" he yelled when a bludger zoomed past him. His heart was beating in his throat, and he had to give himself yet another piece of advice. 'Mental note: WATCH OUT FOR BLUDGERS.' Cepheus followed blindly after the speck he'd seen, having lost it again. He cursed the bludger as a twelve-year-old would and sat idly again, looking around and around for a snitch of any sort. Perhaps it could change colours. That would be...an interesting match. And also ridiculous. Merlin. Why was he having more trouble paying attention during a bloody Quidditch match than in charms class or something? Cepheus wanted to tear his hair out, but he thought his scalp most likely wouldn't appreciate that. He probably wouldn't appreciate that in the morning either. He glared at the Teppenpaw Seeker instead briefly before looking 'round for the snitch once more while keeping another eye out for bludgers.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> Gulp. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font>

May 12, 2012 1:59 PM
This year’s Quidditch just had to go better than last year’s. Linus came to this conclusion based on the assumption that it couldn’t possibly go any worse for his team than it had the year previous. In particular, it couldn’t go all that much worse for him. Having been hit by a Bludger early on, he’d struggled to maintain control of his increasingly wayward broom, culminating by preventing Nic from saving an Aladren goal before the Coach took pity (or, perhaps more accurately, was concerned that Linus would continue to cause harm to himself and others on his errant broomstick) and ordered him onto a new broom. This year, Linus was determined not to make such a stupid mistake again. Admittedly, he couldn’t guarantee to anyone, not even to himself, that he wouldn’t get hit by a Bludger – Teppenpaw had a couple of capable Beaters, even if they weren’t as fearsome as Aladren’s had the for last year’s line-up – but he could at least acknowledge that playing on a broken broomstick wasn’t going to help anyone. Therefore he’d taken two broomsticks from the school’s supplies at the start of the game: one to play with in the first instance, and the second as a back-up in case history should attempt to repeat itself.

As for the rest of the team, Nic was getting better at Keeping with each game they played, and as a sixth year now, Linus expected the teammate who held his preferred position would do an adequate job, and perhaps even present real competition for the Teppenpaw Keeper. The Tepp Chasers didn’t have the solidity of Renée and Sam playing together, so Linus just had to keep up with his teammates and they should be able to keep the Quaffle under control for the majority of the game. Or so the third year hoped.

Admittedly, the Crotalus Seeker was an untested entity, but Cepheus was determined, and small like a Seeker should be. Besides, Kate Bauer hadn’t caught the Snitch last year, so there was a chance that Cepheus could have the same luck as that Pecari Seeker alternate. The Beaters were perhaps not so daunting a prospect as they could be, but Linus was satisfied that they would give the opposition something to contemplate (and if they could stop him from having to use his extra broom then all the better).

The day dawned bright and fresh, and Linus completed his usual morning routine of showering, dressing, grooming, and breakfast. Just because he would need to repeat the motions post-game (aside from the breakfast), that was no reason to reject basic hygiene, especially on such an important day. Admittedly the heats were not so exciting as the championship (or so Linus believed, having never actually been in the position to play a championship game himself), but they still mattered a great deal. Crotalus had to beat Teppenpaw today to stand a chance of winning the Cup, he contemplated as he finished a healthy breakfast of fruit loops and a cream cheese bagel, not to mention Teppenpaw was arguably Sonora’s worst team; losing to them would just look pathetic.

Listening to Captain Bauer’s short speech was successful in further boosting Linus’ desire to win. There was a lot of pressure on Cepheus to capture the Snitch, but the rest of them needed to perform well, too, to help their and to really put the opposition in their place. Linus felt the pressure, working as he was with the team’s Captain and Assistant Captain. Renée and Sam had both been on the team longer than he’s been at Sonora, and they’d had years to develop a good Chasing relationship. Although he’d been practising hard, Linus wasn’t anywhere near up to their standard, but at least by now he was used to some of their idiosyncrasies, which would hopefully give him the edge over the Teppenpaws who might be planning to intercept. His own, very basic plan was simply to stop Teppenpaw from getting the Quaffle, thus preventing the other team from scoring. It sounded so easy; he wondered whether it would work so well in practise.

Before Linus had time to really work up any sort of nervousness, the Coach was already calling the captains forward to shake hands. He swung his leg over his broomstick and prepared to kick off from the ground. On the whistle, he dug his heels into the earth and pushed off, soaring upwards not as quickly as some of his teammates, but nevertheless at a speed sufficient to make him feel like he’d left his stomach behind him on the ground. He had more or less adjusted to the sensation these days, and no longer felt the need to grip the handle of his broom until his knuckles whitened, and grit his teeth until his jaw felt locked in place, which left him able to concentrate on his own position in the game, as well as who’d successfully caught the Quaffle to start the game. On this occasion, it was Sam who had the ball, and advantage to Crotalus. Hoping this was an omen of good things to come, Linus wasted no time in positioning himself to catch a pass. He caught the ball without fumbling – yet another testament that his efforts in practise had paid off – and tucked it under his arm to progress a little further down the pitch towards the Teppenpaw goals. He didn’t want to be cocky though, especially not when there was literally the entire game in front of them. So when he’d travelled a conservative and safe distance, Linus sought an opening, and took the opportunity to make his pass. As usual, his throw was strong and looked to be on target: his best applicable skill in Quidditch by a long way was his throw. As his teammate had done before him, Linus continued flying forwards a short distance after making the pass before his dared to check whether or not it had been successful.
0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> Aye aye, captain. 0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font>

May 12, 2012 4:17 PM
Oh goodie, it was the day of Marcus’s first Quidditch match! He was quite eager and very glad he had made the team. While it had just been on a whim, he did enjoy playing. He liked playing games, especially with other people. While he might have been the youngest on the team—his birthday was on the tail end of the school year, so he was fairly sure he was actually one of the youngest students—he felt like part of the team already, and he considered his teammates to be friends. Nobody was mean to him to tell him otherwise.

While the first year was not a huge fan of competition—because sometimes losing made somebody said, and sometimes winning made somebody act mean—but he was going to try his best. Win or lose, Marcus just wanted to have fun. That was his main goal and one of the main reasons he’d tried out. The other was because the team looked short a player and he hadn’t wanted them to not be able to play! That wasn’t fair to the players they did have.

Fingers gripped tightly around the neck of the broom Daddy sent him, the Teppenpaw Chaser knew he was ready. If he made any mistakes, he reminded himself, he would simply have to keep going and forget about them. Marcus was not going to be hard on himself because it would just make him sad, and then he wouldn’t focus. His goal was to have fun, but he did want to win.

He hopped onto his broom, and while he really wanted to get the Quaffle when the nice coach tossed it into the air, a kid he thought was the captain of the other team got it instead. Marcus pouted but shook it off as he bolted into the air. The Captain guy passed it, and some other Crotalus player got a hold of it. After a bit of pursuit, it seemed he would pass.

Marcus shot forward to intercept, but his timing was off. He did prevent the Quaffle from reaching its target, but it hit him in the head and bounced into his lap, and he scrambled to keep possession. “Ow!” he exclaimed at first, and then he realized something: he had the Quaffle! “Ooh! Look!” He grinned at Captain Kirstenna. He wanted to make her proud. “I caught it!”

“Oh!” What was the eleven year old thinking?! He couldn’t just float there! Like a rocket he shot off down the Pitch, but his grip was not tight enough to continue his hold on the Quaffle. The red orb tumbled out of his grasp near the middle of the Pitch. “Oh no!” he shouted and shot down after it. It seemed unlikely he would regain possession, but he really hoped he did! Out of the corner of his eye, though, he thought he saw someone else racing for the ball.
12 <font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font> Well, we're going to try really hard too! 225 <font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font>

May 12, 2012 4:40 PM
There were those who believed that by confronting one’s fears those fears were lessened. Gareth wished that was true. But he knew better. One of his earliest memories was of getting his first training broom, and screaming when he got five feet off the ground. His father had scolded harshly for his fear and then made him fly every day. The repeated exposure to heights did nothing to lessen the fear, but it did teach him how to control it, and how to hide it from his father. Quidditch was a tradition in the family, but it was also something more. To the heads of each line it was sort of a game of power. How many sons each line had, how many of said sons made it on their respective teams as first line players, and how many of those teams won.

The Redbriars lost a lot of power and prestige when they failed to have any sons, thus putting them out of the game all together. At the moment the Brownbriars were in the lead because Meuric had already graduated from Hogwarts and had been a part of the Ravenclaw team sense he was a first year. He also made it onto his college team so the Brownbriars were very far ahead in that regard. They lost points because of their second son Nye, he was only a reserve and hadn’t actually had to play in a single game. Pryce was the only son left and he still had six years before he would have his chance. The Greenbriars were not in the running yet either seems the twins were only four and they had no other children. Because the twins were boys, they were still higher up than the Reds. The Blackbrairs eldest son Gawain was a Slytherin Beater and had been sense his second year, first year there hadn’t been any openings on the team for first years so he’d spent it as a reserve. But, he had played in the finals when one of the beaters had been taken out and had done well enough to get the spot in his second year. They also only had one boy left, Dylan who would be attending the other American school next term.

I made it on the team my first year, if Enion makes it on his as first string next year we’ll be able to knock the Blackbriars out of the second spot. As much as he hated flying, Gareth was well aware of his family’s pride and his own place in securing that pride. But the team had to do better this year, it looked very bad on his record that they hadn’t made it to the finals. This term they needed to win the cup, and now that Aladren had broken its streak of wins, Gareth thought that Crotalus had a good fighting chance at taking the cup.

It also helped that Aladren no longer had Edmond. Gareth’s wrist still ached slightly in remembrance of the bone cracking under the pressure of trying to halt one of the Aladren Beater’s bludgers. Now that Edmond had graduated, one of the main reasons Aladren had remained unbeatable was no longer a factor.

By analyzing the different teams, and the family rankings, Gareth was able to push back the black fear that wanted to swamp him and compress it into a diamond hard ball in his gut. This was the year of Crotalus, and they would not fail again, not against Teppenpaw, not against Aladren, or even Pecari should they manage to defeat the Hawks a second time. Seems Teppenpaw wasn’t the best team, Gareth decided to spend the game watching over Cepheus. As an untried Seeker, his roommate would have enough troubles just trying to find the Snitch without having to focus on avoiding Bludgers as well.

His appointed task was apparently going to be more difficult than he thought it would be. Just as the whistle blew signifying the start of the game, Cepheus shot into the sky until he was alarmingly high. Gareth’s stomach lurched unpleasantly at the swift assent as he forced himself off the ground to follow. What happened next was terribly similar to when Gwen’s evil incarnate masquerading as a cat took it into its head to chase imaginary things. Cepheus took off, darting this way and that with such surprising speed and abrupt turns that Gareth found it difficult to keep up.

Finally, the Seeker seemed to pause for a moment, giving Gareth a chance to catch up. He was almost too late as a Bludger zipped by Cepheus causing Gareth’s blue eyes to narrow in aggravation. He was watching over the Seeker for Merlin’s sake, a bludger shouldn’t have gotten near him. Huffing with annoyance at his preserved failure, Gareth gave a shallow dive and brought his bat around with a satisfying CRACK, sending the deadly ball careening directly at one of the yellow robed chasers.

That taken care of, Gareth returned his attention to Cepheus, making sure that no other bludgers dared come his way. Drifting closer Gareth said “No worries, I’ll keep the Bludgers off, you find the Snitch. There’s simply no way we can lose to the Teps.” Flashing a smile, Gareth flew a bit higher, giving him a good vantage point to follow where ever the Snitch might lead the Seeker.
0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> I’ve got your back 0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 12, 2012 5:42 PM
After a somewhat chaotic beginning, Cepheus was beginning to feel more in control. He hadn't noticed his roommate trailing him and felt slightly more secure knowing that there was someone there. It was very, very nice to have a good friend on the Quidditch team with him, much less his roommate. He smiled back at Gareth and then tried to focus his disoriented brain on his task. Find the snitch.

He was glad it was sunny now, though it was somewhat difficult to see. It would make the snitch easier to spot, or so he hoped. He knew that sometimes it took professional Quidditch players weeks before they actually found the snitch and caught it successfully. Cepheus gulped again, trying to stifle his fear of failing. As Gareth had said, the Tepps could not win. Cepheus wanted to make sure of that. The only way that could happen was by catching the snitch. Right.

Cepheus began to fly somewhat aimlessly, feeling that he'd see it sometime and would speed after it then. His broom was superior to most others, and he was glad for it. A year of flying hadn't done it much harm, but its life expectancy was supposed to be around 40 years, unless of course, it got broken. Cepheus didn't want to know how one broke their broom besides in a fit of anger after a match or something. His broom though, he felt, was too precious for that.

Another glint caught his eye and Cepheus turned quickly. It was indeed the snitch. He was getting better at this. Cepheus zoomed after it once more, the adrenaline pumping through his veins. The control he had during his flight was great, but his stomach was still knotted. If he had really wanted to, he could probably empty out the contents in his stomach on command. He was just holding it in as of now. He had to focus on the snitch ahead of him. It was like magic, suddenly, as the snitch disappear after doing a loop and flying away in another direction. Cepheus tried to follow it, but all he was following was air. Bugger!

Ceph took a deep breath and looked around skeptically, trying to find another glint. Any glint. His eyes accidentally glanced at the sun and he was blinded for a second. The irritating sun had now left spots to blink out in his eyes. He blinked once, twice, and still his sight seemed impaired. For Merlin's sake, this whole match was going to the crups! He clenched his teeth, angry at himself and desperate to prove himself. A new Seeker on a team that hadn't won the cup last year, and untrained in the ways of the wise. He still had a lot to learn, but he wanted to be worth the teaching.

With his slightly impaired sight, it probably wasn't the smartest to be flying up high in the air where bludgers and the like were flying about. But Gareth was protecting him, so Cepheus felt free to chase after yet another glint of gold. Hopefully this wasn't misleading him from the snitch itself, if it wasn't the snitch.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> Much obliged. I'll need it. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font>

May 12, 2012 5:44 PM
A shower before the game, the muscles in her back relaxing under the downpour of hot water thudding against her skin, her body enveloped in rising steam. She tilted her head back, letting the water pound against her face, a vigorous massage against her temple, kneading out all the tight jumbled up thoughts and anxieties that grew in a knot inside her brain. A slight squeak of metal grating metal, her hand reached out to twist the knobs and end the shower. Towel, drying off, throwing on crimson Quidditch robes, her hair tied back, the dark curls sagging over her shoulder. She could hear light criticism of its ever expanding length in the guise of her mother's voice. She brushed it off, no more thoughts, just the game, just Quidditch.

She wandered into Cascade Hall, tofu scallion cream cheese on sesame bagel, her teeth sinking into the tiny meal, flashes of Brooklyn penetrating her mind. She brushed that away too. Swallowing, sucking on her teeth, getting rid of any trace of her having eaten. Her broom waited in the lockers, she was almost reluctant to try it out, her Febre gathering dust beneath her bed. She shifted in her seat, uncomfortable and restless but there was a desire to just fall asleep too. Living and moving and breathing could be such a strain sometimes. 'Brush it off, don't think about it, don't think about anything.' She knew that, as always, she needed only to take flight, wind pressing against her body, urging her forward or tugging her back, and then she'd feel wonderful.

She joined her team on the pitch, the Arizona sun and warmth enveloping her. It was pleasant, and she assumed just for Crotalus, just for her. She gave Sam's words more attention than she usually would in a game against Teppenpaw. They were Sonora's worst team but they also had Sonora's best keeper, and they had a far more experienced seeker than Crotalus did. Renée figured between her, Sam, and Linus they could keep the Quaffle between them most of the time and never have to bring Nicodemus into the action, but with Kirstenna guarding the goals she wasn't certain that they could score enough points that Cepheus catching the snitch or not wouldn't matter. "Good luck, everybody." Then she mounted her broom and all uncertainty washed away.

The Nightingale rose seamlessly into the sky. The dark wood would have blended well in the darkness, partially covered by Renée's stretched out form and crimson robes. While her last broom was built for speed and longevity, this was made for agility; quicker turns and easier dives. She tested it out now as she followed Sam and Linus, flanking them, waiting for a backward pass should they need to get on the defensive. Teppenpaw had a new team of chasers that might turn out to be far more aggressive than their predecessors.

Sam to Linus, Linus back to Sam but suddenly intercepted and Renée stiffened on her broom as she watched the Teppenpaw player jerk through the air into the Quaffle's path. 'So they are bett - ' She watched the Quaffle fall and leaned forward on her broom, the world tilting, one arm outstretched. 'Nevermind.' The feel of leather on her fingertips. A smile shot across her face, her body curving just under the Teppenpaw's diving body, and leaned forward to shoot back toward Teppenpaw goals, still caught in no-man's land on the pitch. She brought the Quaffle into the crook of her arm, then tucked against her chest, gripping the handle of the broom, adjusting to the newfound feel of having to push harder than usual to go faster, and the lesser need to turn her body so obviously to move in the direction she wanted.

Yellow robes in her peripheral vision. Renée rose higher in the air, her left arm raising, uncurling, Quaffle cradled in her hand. She passed it off, quick and direct, saving her feints and curved trajectories for a real challenge. The sunlight felt so good on her skin, and the generated breeze from her form and teammates' streaking the sky. The sounds of the crowd, their private audience and critics. And the jumbled up thoughts were gone, nothing but her dark eyes scanning the sky, looking for openings and obstacles and strategies. Her hands clenching dark wood, her body stretched forward, leaning forward, further approaching Teppenpaw territory. Always always always Quidditch was so good to her. Win or lose, none of that really mattered, so long as she kept just flying.
0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> Your hardest isn't good enough. 0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> 0 5

<font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font>

May 12, 2012 6:35 PM
Dreads tied back by beaded string and faux glasses pulled off gave Solomon the rare opportunity to look at all of his face, blue eyes shining within the expanse of smooth dark skin. "Yuh can do dis," He mumbled, trying to imagine his reflection was someone else. A great hero from one of his stories. "an' yuh 'ave tuh do dis." Several deep breaths, several shallow exhalations. He'd written back home to his parents, brother, and cousins, letting them know of the odd task his team had set before him. His father had recommended a broom Solomon could have bought for him but Solomon had politely declined, Teppenpaw only plays one game a year, father. All Solomon needed was a borrowed Cleansweep Eleven, all he wanted was to be able to stay afloat the broom. He knew how to fly, to turn and dive, but to spend his life chasing the fickle trajectory decisions of a red leather-bound ball was beyond his comprehension.

He joined his team on the pitch, for the first time wearing yellow Quidditch robes, enjoying its feel, the bright color vibrant against his dark tone. He directed a small smile of pre-emptive apology toward Arista and Marcus who were pretty much going to be on their own. It wasn't that Solomon hadn't been trying to do well in practices; leaning forward after flashes of red orbs, hands raised against his chest to make catches. But he just wasn't good. He could make catches, stopping still in the air and his hands trapping the ball against his chest. He could make throws, but again only if everyone was paused, suspended in the air, nobody moving and confusing him. "Guh team." He spoke quietly, nervousness shaking the syllables, turning to swing his legs over the Cleansweep as the captains shook hands. Bent knees, the ground solid, and then push up, solidity giving way to fluid currents of air and space.

"Oh..." It was like slipping into a dream, yellow and red meshing together, and Solomon blinked in confusion as the reds suddenly broke from the cloudy haze and directed themselves like an arrow toward where he dimly recognized as Kirstenna's station in the sky. 'I'm a yellow... so I should stick with yellow.' Blue eyes squinted and he watched as yellow moved forward following red. Solomon leaned forward too, the broom's wood clenched in his hands. His body felt tense. More breaths, inhalations and exhalations, he tried to ease up. 'You're not Solomon, you're... Rafael Cassini, a daring Italian explorer and occasional hired assassin. You seek treasures on your own, too gluttonous to share, but today you find yourself working for the Prairie Dogs; a band of yellow robed desert pirates that need your expertise in infiltrating the demonic nest of red snake skinned warriors. In exchange for the ruby orb egg that contains the possessed soul of the snake queen, they will give you a map leading to unparalleled treasure.'

His vision grew clear, his faced marked with new purpose, and he leaned his body a little further, speed increasing as he strained to catch up to Marcus who had just made an interception "Yus!" Solomon felt a cheer leave his throat, at once more animated than he'd ever been on the ground, save for the excitement that occasionally rushed through him when consumed in writing. But how could that compare to actually living through a story? Solomon readied himself for a pass from his allied pirate friend, but the ruby egg began to drop. He leaned forward, ready to race after it, but - CRACK

His vision swam and his back arched in pain, a hard thud against his spine. Solomon slumped on his broom, dazed and confused, his teeth clamped down hard on his tongue, the taste of salt and iron filling his senses. 'Ummmmmmmm...' His mind was drawing a blank, unable to register the pain wracking his body, centered in his back. He wasn't falling but his body was drifting down, the Cleansweep cradling him, raindrops on leaves that broke from the trees, swaying in the air down to the ground. "Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah..." Solomon breathed out, huffs of breath leaving his throat, clenched his eyes shut and then opened again, already the pain fading though his back ached. A hard thud but nothing had cracked, not enough force and the speed had dimmed before impact. A momentary shock against his skin. "Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah..." He was afraid to straighten up, kept himself parallel to the broom, chin raising to see the rest of the chasers above and away. Another moment to breathe and catch breath, then he'd rejoin them, get his treasure map, rejoin fellow pirates, maybe work up enough energy to strangle some demonic rattle snakes.

A glint out of the corner of his eye and then a red robed form barreling after it. Solomon turned his head to see more clearly a red robed player with a wooden bat in his possession still near. Reluctantly, Solomon moved away sooner than he'd wanted to, not eager to regain target status. One hit was more than enough for him. 'Find ruby egg, and then everything is over.' He pushed the broom, eager for pain and game to end. He just needed to get his fingers on the Quaffle and then he could leave for good. He searched for it now, wondering who had gotten ahold of it.
0 <font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font> I would like my own back intact. 0 <font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Captain Kirstenna,Keeper</font>

May 13, 2012 12:01 PM
It was time for yet another Quidditch game. Kirstenna could feel the butterflies in her stomach. She wanted-no needed -to win this game. The Teppenpaw had never won a game as captain before and she felt like she was letting everyone down. Not just the rest of the team, but the entire house. A house whose head liked to turn people into beetles. What if Professor Brockert-that was something that still truly disturbed her, the Beetle Lady being married to her cousin-decided to turn them into beetles if they lost?

It wouldn't even be completely their fault if they lost either. Not with the Imposter around. The woman was evil and evil hated goodness and kindness. Teppenpaws were kind by nature, therefore the Imposter hated Teppenpaws-and it showed. That was why they always lost. Certainly, there were people on the other teams that really genuinely good players but they were not necessarily better than Teppenpaw's.

And it was Crotalus they were playing. On the plus side, Kirstenna was a way better Keeper than Nic Sawyer and Kate was a much more experienced Seeker than Cepheus Princeton. Yet, the other team included Sam. Kirstenna didn't know quite where she stood with the other captain. They'd gone to the ball together, but they hadn't spent much time together last year. She needed him as a friend at the very least, now that the Imposter had taken all her others away in one way or another. Though, Kirstenna figured that was something that would be put aside for the duration of the game.

On the other hand, Renee Errant was also on the opposing team. And Merlin, did the sixth year captain ever want to beat her! The Chaser was an agent of the Imposter who'd stolen away her best friend. She wasn't even human . Which Kirstenna supposed wasn't technically Renee's fault either. She couldn't help that she was a dark twisted evil creature. It was the Imposter's fault that she had been unleashed upon them all.

She looked at her team. "Okay, Crotalus's strongest points are it's Chasers. Derry, Laurie, try your best to take them out." Kirstenna smiled encouragingly at the others, "Let's make this our year guys!" What she really wanted to tell them was that if they could leave the Quidditch Coach with a head injury, that would be nice too, but she kind of feared retaliation on that front.

The sixth year shook hands with Sam, giving him a charming smile and wishing him luck as well. Kirstenna took off into the air and went to her usual spot in front of the goals. She cheered when Marcus got the Quaffle. He seemed so proud of himself! However, she cringed as he dropped it and Renee picked it up while Solomon got hit by a bludger.

Oh Merlin, they were not off to a great start here. She just hoped Kate found and caught the snitch quickly, before the Imposter could really wreak havoc on them.
11 <font color=yellow>Captain Kirstenna,Keeper</font> Let's win this time! 161 <font color=yellow>Captain Kirstenna,Keeper</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 14, 2012 2:02 PM
Quidditch at a small school was often a family affair, but Kate had never really noticed it as it applied to her before. Sure, Sam was family, but with the distance between the Seeker and the rest of her own team, sometimes, much less the Chasers of other teams during the game, it hadn’t seemed to matter too much – or at least not the way it was mattering now that her cousin was actually the Crotalus captain, rather than just the Assistant Captain like her, and he was fielding a Seeker it should, theoretically, be easy to beat. When those conditions had not been in place, it had not seemed to matter much that Sam was her cousin, even when he was already the Crotalus Assistant Captain; Marissa had seemed like more to do with her on the Pitch than her cousin had.

That was then, though, and this was now, where all those things that hadn’t been true last year were true, and Kate’s stomach, consequently, was tied into a solid knot of dread as she thought of Sam being the opposing captain and having a new Seeker. She felt almost sick as she waited for the show to begin.

She was, as a member of the other girl’s team, standing so Kirstenna’s back was to her, but as she watched, she saw that Sam was smiling at the Teppenpaw captain, and even in what Kate thought was a nice way. For a blissful moment, she was distracted from being kind of sick by the thought of the domestic dramas of the sixth years. They had gone to the Ball together, and Kate thought they were friends, but she was pretty sure they weren’t dating, anyway, and hadn’t really been even during the Ball thing, so it was still better than some of the cases she thought she’d heard of where captains had previously or currently been involved with each other….

This distraction lasted all of a moment, though; all too soon, the coach was blowing her whistle, and the game was on. The majority of the players melded into a wild red-and-yellow lump as they shot into the air, all fighting, she guessed, for possession of the three balls it was easy to see and, therefore, to make a game of possessing. She broke away from them all, flying high in the hopes of seeing the Snitch above all the mayhem.

She wanted to win this – she needed to win this, if she was to be perfectly honest. It had been so long, and now she didn’t even have the excuses of Marissa’s superior age and experience or Arnold’s craziness and cousin, just a second year and the prospects of total humiliation and a year’s worth of gloating rights for Sam here in front of her. She was convinced that if she ever went up against Arnold Carey again that she could beat him, and so atone for every other loss she’d put the team through, but first she had to get past Crotalus. First she had to beat Sam.

Come here, little Snitchy, she thought, beginning her first loop. Come here, let me win…

The Snitch, however, remained stubbornly out of sight as Kate flew through the clear sky, never staying still for more than second or two in the expectation that the Crotalus Beaters would be here to greet her soon enough….

….Or that the Crotalus Seeker would start haring off after things, making her obligated to follow just to be sure he wasn’t crazy. New Seekers always jumped at everything, she thought, but the fact was that sometimes, they were right. Arnold Carey had been right, and so had Jade Owen, last year. The way Cepheus was flying around like he was going completely crazy in the air kind of added some verisimilitude to his run, too; the Snitch could move like that, when it wanted to. The rest of them just weren’t so overeager, at this point in the game, that they usually risked making themselves sick and dizzy when the Snitch looked like it was in a playful mood.

Well, Kate couldn’t say she’d complain if Cepheus puked, or better yet just fell off of his broom, but she wasn’t going to count on it. She didn’t have the luck when it came to this game, after all. If she did, she would have won a bit more often, and the Snitch wouldn’t be so active today.

After ascertaining that Princeton was not actually about to catch the Snitch, though – the one way in which its constant showing of itself, or at least of something gold and move-y showing itself, was working in her favor, it seemed – Kate took a moment to look at the situation as a whole. She couldn’t see either of her Beaters, but one of the Crotalus ones was in sight. It wasn’t Topher, which was another thing she was sort of glad for, but it was her opposition’s roommate, which could, maybe, offer some advantage to them; it depended on how well they got along, which she didn’t think was too often the case between roommates in Crotalus House. Either way, though, she had to keep up with Cepheus and not get too bruised up by Gareth, and….Ah, curse it, there went the second year again. If she didn’t win today, and Pecari’s win turned out to have been a fluke, she thought it would be darkly amusing to watch this guy and Arnold drive each other to frothing madness by the end of the Championship.

For now, she flew after him, and determined that his broom was probably enough different from hers that if she flew in front of him at any speed, she was likely to spark a collision, which would hurt her as much as him, probably, and get Crotalus a penalty shot, which Kirstenna could probably handle but which was all-around better not to deal with if they could help it. If she tried cutting him off, either for real or to mess with him, she’d try it when he eventually, if the Snitch continued to elude them both, slowed down, as he would have to do. He seemed a little slower already, honestly; that wacko flight plan right at the beginning of the game had to have taken it out of him.

The trick was to keep him and his friend both in her sights – it looked like Solomon had already caught a Bludger, so it would be bad if she did, too, especially if her Beaters didn't show up to do some damage to the Crotali sooner rather than later - while still, oh yes, looking for the Snitch, which didn't seem to be anywhere around here....

She glanced toward Cepheus. Would it work? Worth a try, anyway. Getting a better grip on her broom, Kate dove toward the ground almost as fast as that broom could go, hoping he would follow at top speed and crash into something that wouldn't hurt her or cause a foul to be declared against her team. In Quidditch, leading someone into messing himself up was fair play, so long as she didn't actually touch him.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> But my guys can break your arms at will? 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 14, 2012 3:13 PM
Linus took the pass, and Sam was feeling good about the game when – quite suddenly – Teppenpaw’s newest Chaser, a tiny little first year he’d nearly overlooked when scanning the opposing line-up during the handshake, jumped into the middle of things and…had the Quaffle bounce off of him, then showed it off to Kirstenna.

For a moment, Sam was sufficiently confused by this behavior that he did not know quite how to react to it. Okay, so everyone got the Quaffle by complete accident every now and then. This happened. It was not something to be proud of, and it certainly wasn’t a reason to just sit there and call out to one’s captain. Sam wasn’t sure about Marissa, anyway, but if he had done that with Charlie when she was his captain, he was pretty sure she would have borrowed a bat just to come smack him in the head for being a gibbering idiot. The only thing that made sense, then, was that it was a very clever trap intended to set Pierce and Stratford on them….

…Unless, of course, maybe the kid just thought he was still in Little League. Very Little League, where winning and losing didn’t matter and half the players didn’t know what the ball was, anyway, or why they should chase after it. Whatever. The important part was, the kid was now moving, and just as promptly dropping the ball - take that, pureblood brooms! Sam thought triumphantly, since it looked like the kid’s own momentum had deprived him of the prize – which was then retrieved by Renée, and the game proceeded as before, moving toward Kirstenna and away from the middle of the Pitch.

When Renée looked like she was going to pass, Sam readied himself to catch the ball, though he expected it to go to Linus, or at least look like it was going to Linus before it came back to him. When it didn’t, he was surprised, but then, he guessed so were the Teppenpaws. The thing about a player like Renée was that the simple move was usually the one no one would expect and therefore wouldn’t play around. He still had his reservations about the wisdom of having her as a captain someday, but there was no denying that she was useful on the Pitch.

Now for the goal, maybe. He flew fast, moving that way at a good pace…and then, not too far from it, passed as quickly to one of his teammates as he could. Nothing would do for it but to keep Kirstenna as confused as possible; maybe they’d lose the ball from it, but he thought the risk was acceptable at this point because of the need to not let Kirstenna have a second’s worth of knowledge of what they were about to do that could possibly be kept from her. He was taking care not to underestimate Teppenpaw as a whole, but especially not her; she was, family or no family, their best.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> Back on track, now, Crotalus. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 14, 2012 6:33 PM
One of the first rules Cepheus had learnt concerning Quidditch was never to follow a false lead. That was, of course, somewhat impossible, but having been led astray multiple times while playing Quidditch with his friends and family back hone, he didn't think he could trust other Seekers. He was somewhat tired already from chasing whatever glints of gold he had seen, or thought he'd seen. Bauer, the Teppenpaw Seeker, had followed him around a bit which he'd thought was strange at first. Then he wondered if she'd seen it too which had spurred him on a bit more until he lost sight of the gold.

Watching a bludger pound one of the Teppenpaw chasers in the back looked painful and Cepheus winced as he stayed sitting on his broom in the air. It was as if realization washed over him, a sudden panic, perhaps, but all of a sudden everything was clear and he had to take a few deep breaths, his senses heightened. He could get hurt! For real! The thought of a bludger pounding into him made chills roll down his back and he was paranoid for a moment. His eyes caught sight of the Teppenpaw Seeker and he watched her, trying to get his mind off of the horrible images in his head.

It looked like she was going to dive to the ground, which he thought was ridiculous, and he didn't see any purpose. Though he was inexperienced in a real "professional" Quidditch setting, he'd played the game enough to know not to follow an opposing Seeker unless he was absolutely sure he saw gold. The sun was bright enough anyway that he would see the glint in front of her. As far as he could see, she wasn't following anything in particular. He didn't enjoy chasing after other seekers anyway; that's what chasers were supposed to do.

Cepheus hated staying nearly immobile on his broom in the middle of a match, so he began to fly around, going the opposite way of Bauer. He didn't want to spark anything, and being inexperienced, he was afraid of something terrible happening to him. His fears were going to get the best of him, but it was difficult to knock it out of himself.

He looked around, flying and watching Gareth to make sure he was shadowing him. He didn't want to get hit by a flying bludger any time soon. For Merlin's sake, he didn't know which would be worse: get hit hard by a bludger or lose the match to Teppenpaw. Cepheus flew around, his blue eyes searching desperately. As far as he was concerned, the latter was much worse. His pride was on the line then. His fears were beginning to turn into a panic as he didn't see any sign of a snitch. Perhaps he should have gone after Bauer...
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> Only if we can do it to you guys first. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font>

May 14, 2012 10:53 PM
Derry Four had spent a summer living down the street from Coach Pierce. This had both radically changed some of his impressions of the school's deputy headmistress and cemented others. If he hadn't seen it with his own eyes, he would have sworn she would have turned any two-year-old who dumped cereal on her into a toad in half a second, not just chided gently and cleaned herself up.

This lassitude, however, did not extend to people who actually knew better. One of the things that had remained the same was that she would not be showing Teppenpaw any favors on the Quidditch Pitch just because Derry was now sort of a part of her branch of the family. She was strictly neutral in her refereeing. Whether out of a sense of unbiased fairness or a deeper loyalty to her original Salem House or just a simple preference for the color purple, Coach Pierce did not even decorate her house in any of Sonora's major colors (in perfect truth, though he would never voice such a traitorous thought, after Three's house, and Mom's, and Teppenpaw, it was something of a relief to go someplace where the primary color scheme was not yellow).

He didn't quite agree anymore with Kirstenna's idea that the Coach was actively against them (she did not, after all, put them up against either of last year's finalists or either of the Houses that had won the championship during Derry's time at Sonora; though that could have also been her trying to give Crotalus an edge as well since Teppenpaw hadn't managed either of those feats either), but he'd seen her be stern enough with Bel and Three, sometimes in favor of complete strangers, that he felt sure she actually meant it when she said she wanted clean, fair games.

Now it was the day of the first game. Derry wasn't nervous. He was never really nervous about playing. Quidditch was fun and he was one of the guys with a bat. The only thing he really had to be worried about was that he might mess up and one of his friends might get a little battered. They were up against neither Edmond nor Demelza, though, so he figured he would be able to fend off the worst attacks. He wasn't a great fan of the battering himself, but he liked his position because it meant he could be the hero to his own teammates.

Therefore, he felt a little horrible when, not more than a minute after the whistle blew and they took to the air, he didn't make it to Solomon in time to prevent him from getting walloped pretty good in the back. "Sorry!" he shouted as he flew by in pursuit of the offending bludger before it could get to anyone else with a yellow robe, or worse, a red robe and a bat. Solomon didn't look too badly injured, though, so Derry put the incident behind him and determined to do better by his team for the rest of the game.

And the thing his team needed most was help with the Chasers. Arista was the only one who was actually well trained in the position, though Solomon and Marcus were trying hard. Kate had the edge on Crotalus's new Seeker (and he expected Laurie was hopefully looking out for her already) and Kirstenna could handle her own. So, for the good of Teppenpaw, Derry guided his bludger back to where the Chasers were and swung hard.

The crack of metal being struck by tempered wood resounded loudly and the bludger shot off at speed toward the Crotalus who was attempting to catch Sam Bauer's pass.
0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> Trying to derail you again 0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 14, 2012 10:57 PM
Kate saw that Cepheus wasn’t following her, but she also noticed that he was not moving quickly in any direction, so she flew to the side and then leveled out, now away from both his Beater and the main action, with some open air she could see around in. She wished her move had worked, but she couldn’t say she was going to complain too much about how things were going at the moment. She was in no immediate danger of being hit by a Bludger, and if the Snitch wasn’t up there with Cepheus, then maybe it was down here with her, or at least in neutral ground where either of them might have a shot at it.

She began to fly as though she were moving up and down rows, looking through the clear, bright air. Sun like this could blind her, but it could also make a Snitch as easy to see as it ever was. She was hoping for the latter, which was another advantage to being lower; she was less likely, she thought, to look around and get the sun straight in her eyes. She was still starting to squint, and having to rub her eyes to make them open again.

That was Quidditch. The sun could make the Snitch shine brighter, but her eyes didn’t want to stay open, and one wrong look would leave her looking at green spots instead of watching what was going on – and even more than making her miss a chance at the Snitch, that could make her not see a Bludger. She had been playing Quidditch too long to be terrified at the thought of a Bludger, but it did scare her, and she didn’t like it one bit, as no sane person, in her expert opinion on that matter, did. Being hit by a fast-moving iron ball which could break bones if it hit just so and was hit by a strong enough person just…failed to be fun, to her mind; she had concluded that if Quidditch Through the Ages was right about how Bludgers came to exist, then Scottish wizards of a certain generation had been completely crazy.

Since it was too late to do anything about it now, though, she just rubbed her eyes again and kept looking for the Snitch, her eyes moving fast over the ground, up and down and to the sides in the air, to any and everywhere, hoping the Beaters would take out the Crotalus Seeker and give her at least a temporary reprieve and maybe an easier-to-beat figure in an alternate but knowing that she had to be on top of it herself the whole time if she really wanted to win this, which she did. Kate thought that she might want this as badly as she had ever wanted anything in her life, except maybe – on some days, particularly and much more when she was younger and everything was newer – for her parents to get back together again.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Chaser</font> No, just your team. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font>

May 14, 2012 11:53 PM
They continued moving forward, crossing into Teppenpaw territory, the Quaffle safe in Sam’s grasp. It was a relief that even after Charlie had left Crotalus still had an effective Chasing team. If asked to explain it Renée wouldn’t have been able to articulate why that was. Her mind was consistently dancing along the border of reality and fantasy, Sam was dependable yet nothing special, and Linus was just a kid. The three of them held no special connection, barely even accomplished small talk. Renée’s technical title was Assistant Captain but it was a title without meaning. All she wanted to do was move through the air, just fly, just chase. There was little freedom in leadership.

Dark brown eyes lingered on Sam’s concentrated form. He looked as if he were about to attempt a goal but Renée pulled forward, aware that Sam usually shied away from goals when there was an opportunity to pass. CRACK. Sam turned and the Quaffle sped from his hands at the same time a subtle whistle traveled through the currents, aiming for Renée. She caught the Quaffle with a hard slap against the palms of her hands and immediately swerved into a diagonal ascent directed toward the goals on Kirstenna’s right hand side, a bludger brushing her leg as it shot off below her.

She loved those very moments of suspension, everything slowed and zoomed in, the glint of silver, the sun shining on the metal goal posts. Kirstenna wasn’t the real obstacle, it was Renée’s own ability, aim, power, concentration. One second, two seconds, Sam had passed and she had caught the ball... three seconds, four seconds, a bludger had been hit, jumping up through the air to escape its assault... five seconds, six seconds, her body twisted on the broom, arm raising, pulled back, fingers clenched in leather, and then the arm straightened, her whole body a slingshot, fingers releasing and urging away the Quaffle flying fast and direct, aimed with an upwards curve toward the goal hoop.

Being the first to do something always felt good. Someone had been the first to successfully hit a player, Sam had been the first to grab the Quaffle, the newest Teppenpaw chaser had been the first to make an interception. Her tongue briefly wet the bottom of her lip, the suspension wavering, time speeding up. Either Kirstenna was going to make the first save or Renée had just made the first successful shot. 'Come on,' Excitement blared. 'come on... make it!'
0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> Hopefully succeeding again. 0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font>

May 15, 2012 9:37 AM
As he’d opted to travel onwards a little to encourage confusion of the opposition following his pass, it was after a couple of seconds’ delay that he realized his pass had been intercepted. His face contorted into a frustrated frown without conscious decision, as he’d been so sure he’d anticipated no potential interception threat from Teppenpaw, and was dismayed to find he had made a misjudgement. However, as the miniature Tepp (Linus wasn’t sure of this particular first year’s name yet) was diving after the Quaffle when Linus first saw him, the third year could reasonably conclude the interception hadn’t been fluid, and so perhaps there had been extraneous factors beyond his contemplation that allowed the intervention. He felt better about that.

Regardless of the circumstances, the interception hadn’t done the Crotalus team any great deal of damage, as Renée collected the falling Quaffle and play resumed as easily as if the ball had remained in Crotalus possession for the duration. Linus was still somewhat flustered that his first pass of the game hadn’t been as successful as he’d have liked, but as his team still came out winners in this small scenario he knew he had to let his disappointment dissipate and focus solidly on the rest of the game. So it was he continued to fly at reasonable distance from his teammates towards the Teppenpaw-guarded goals, prepared to receive a pass should one come his way.

As they progressed closer towards Kirstenna’s domain, however, it became increasingly apparent that a pass wasn’t coming. Linus tried not to feel too disheartened; if they could manage a goal between them then there was no reason at all for Sam and Renée to pass to him purely for the sake of it. Again, he had to remember that the team was what was important in the game, not his own personal gain. Still, it was difficult not to feel like they were avoiding passing to him because he had a tendency to perform on a standard below their own. He was trying, honest to God he was, but even so his fellow Chasers had years more experience in working together. Linus knew resentment was fruitless, and that only yet more practise and effort input on his part would rectify the situation, but that didn’t do a great deal to soothe his damaged ego as he watched the Quaffle pass from Renée to Sam and then back again.

Happily, these frustrations he felt were only fleeting, and vanished entirely as Crotalus made their first attempt at goals. So early on in the game, too – it was an impressive achievement, even if the move wasn’t successful. It would be a tricky one to call, as Renée was an excellent Chaser, but Kirstenna was a similarly talented Keeper. Therefore Linus tried to position himself in an optimum space for either outcome: close enough to a Tepp Chaser to be able to swoop in and block them from accepting a pass from their Keeper, but far enough away that should one of his own teammates get to the Quaffle first, Linus could break away from the yellow player to take a pass if he was needed.

As the ball soared towards the hoop, there was nothing left for Linus to do except to watch it. That Crotalus had taken the Quaffle first, kept it almost entirely in their possession, and then made the first attempt at goal all within the early minutes of the game seemed to the third year to be an auspicious string of events. He could only hope it was an indication of how the rest of the game would go. More often than not, of course, the goals scored by the Chasers didn’t count towards the final outcome of the game; that was down to the Seekers. So while he naturally wanted to show off his team (and himself) to the best of its ability, he was secretly relying on Cepheus to out-manoeuvre Teppenpaw’s Seeker. Those hundred and fifty points inevitably ended school games, but on the other hand, it was the Chasers who made the game for the spectators, and at least contributed to the overall score. Plus there were the bragging rights of scoring the first goal, the most goals, and other such milestones. Linus had yet to score a goal himself, but perhaps today he might make an attempt. Tepp’s Keeper was good, nobody would argue that, but as Linus had never tried to score a goal during a game, then nobody had seen what he would be likely to do, therefore he might have unpredictability on his side. It was a theory; he might test it later. Would it bring Crotalus’ point total up to twenty? He looked toward the goals to find out.
0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> Here's to success! 0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 15, 2012 1:11 PM
Topher still didn’t feel completely right about leaving the Seeker to Gareth, but he reminded himself as the game began and he flew through the Chasers that the two second years had some kind of rhythm together and that this was not, after all, one of the old games. Their Seeker was probably a little more fragile than the Teppenpaw one, which was the reverse of what he was used to, but one of Teppenpaw’s Beaters had been a Chaser last year. He was not too worried about Cepheus, especially when he saw that Derry was also playing with the Chasers today. Derry was almost definitely more of a problem than some Teppenpaw guy who’d been on the receiving end of Bludgers last year.

Besides, he couldn’t be everywhere. At some point, he had to trust Gareth, and the other Beater was the one knew Cepheus well, which was as important as anything for working with a Seeker. He’d always thought that being family might honestly have something to do with Arnold and Edmond’s successes together, and roommates were the next best thing to family, usually, at Sonora. 

He had smiled during Sam’s speech about systematically obliterating the Teppenpaw team, but had not done a very good job so far. The Quaffle had, technically, changed hands five times now without him even taking aim at anyone. Luckily, though, it hadn’t been too necessary; Crotalus had been in control of the Quaffle the whole time for all practical intents and purposes, which were the only kind Topher was that worried about, and the Bludgers had stayed out of it except to benefit Crotalus in that one freak moment with Gareth hitting a Chaser. He guessed that lulled him into a momentary complacency, because suddenly, there was Derry, and though Renée managed to just dodge it, mostly, he thought, it had been there.

Irritated, Topher went after that Bludger, hitting it as hard as he could toward a Teppenpaw Chaser. He did not guess this was going to give him any additional credit with the Assistant Captain, who he’d always, despite often telling himself he was just being paranoid, had a feeling didn’t think too much of him – or, honestly, of anyone but herself, which would be an Issue for everyone if she ever did become captain, but it bothered him in particular because he had a good chance of being the next Assistant Captain – but past was past, now. He followed the Bludger’s trajectory from a safe distance, prepared to duke it out with Derry for possession either now or in just about one minute, once the Quaffle was back in play and he was in a position to make a move quickly and easily without risking his own people, or really hurting anyone, too much. Or just getting tangled up in the other players; that would be pretty embarrassing, he thought, and he wasn’t eager to try it out if he could help it, which he could right this second.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> I'll drink to that 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper</font>

May 15, 2012 4:16 PM
This game was off to a really horrid start. One of her Chasers was hurt, though apparently the Imposter didn't notice-or care, because she might have very well been responsible for it, but then having a bludger hit you in Quidditch was like being punched in boxing-and then the Quaffle, which Kirstenna had a tendency to watch, had only been in Teppenpaw hands once, which Marcus had dropped , which sort of made the Captain wonder why she'd put him to start over Aubrielle.

And she felt bad about thinking that way. Marcus was a good kid, and he seemed so enthusiastic. Kirstenna liked that he seemed to have a positive attitude. Someone had to have one, as her own was beginning to wane, well when it came to things that involved the Imposter. Besides, it was more than Arista or Solomon had done so far.

Actually, she wondered if putting the first year on the team was the best thing for him too. Kirstenna remembered when she'd first started playing, just wanting to help the team out, so they'd have a full team. Now she was captain and wanted desperately to win. She'd become more competitive, and didn't really like herself much for it.

It was just that well, Kirstenna didn't want to go down in Sonora as a bad captain. She'd never had to be the best-she knew she had other skills, she was a good Keeper, and a good singer, and she really doubted that many people at Sonora, if any, could perform all the circus acrobatics that she could-but nobody wanted to be known as the worst at something.

Still, they needed Marcus. All of them were needed. Which was why no matter how good a Keeper the sixth year was, it wasn't what mattered. The thing was they were a team , and nobody on the team could do it alone.

She continued to watch the Quaffle. Renee had it now, and was coming towards her. The soul sucking demon threw the ball and there was no way the Teppenpaw captain was letting that creature score. Sam or the third year would be one thing, but Renee was quite another. Kirstenna lunged for it, barely reaching it but reaching it nonetheless. She grabbed the Quaffle and threw it to the nearest Teppenpaw chaser, more confident about it going towards her intended target then she'd once been, her throwing skills were not great but they had improved over the years.

11 <font color=yellow>Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper</font> Um, no 161 <font color=yellow>Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper</font> 0 5

<font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font>

May 15, 2012 5:15 PM
His back continued to throb, though without much pain. Just an uncomfortable continuous reminder that he’d been hit. It helped to stretch the length of his body across the wood, the parallel motion increasing the speed of his flight. With his chin balanced on the broom Solomon saw clearly where to move, staying stretched out and rocking his body from one side to the other, staying out of people’s way. He kept a lookout for yellow robes and the toss of red and finally found it leaving a serpentine creature’s hold, speeding toward the Teppenpaw goals.

“Yus!” White teeth flashed from between darkest skin, blue eyes lit up. He couldn’t wait to be Keeper once Kirstenna left (or a happy reserve if someone else wanted the position). The air calm and still, every once in awhile pulsating with anticipation, and then those brief moments of glory, a simple brush of the fingers against leather. Solomon squeezed the handle of the Cleansweep hard, teeth digging into his bottom lip, and then forced himself to sit up, pausing in the air a few feet away from Kirstenna on her right side. She threw the Quaffle toward him and he caught it against his chest, moving only once he’d secured it on his body, teeth sinking deeper into his lip as small spikes of lightening dancing along his spine.

Pass it off, pass it off, pass it off.’ He flew straight, imagining himself on train tracks, never wavering from the marked out road. He turned his head as he flew, waiting for either Marcus or Arista to get in the clear. The Quaffle weighed heavy, resting in his arm. The more distance put between the Quaffle and Kirstenna, the better Teppenpaw would feel. The more distance between himself and the Quaffle, the better Solomon would feel. ‘There!’ He saw his teammate, a gap opened amidst the players, but he’d yet to conquer direct passes while flying at the same time. There were too many factors to consider. The motion of his arm, the consistency of not only his path but theirs, how much force behind the throw. Always, it was easier, to just come to a complete halt.

“Nngh – heah!” A sharp break, broom slightly tilting, vision briefly decorated with light spots, Solomon locked eyes on a teammate’s form, pulled back, and threw the Quaffle toward them, a smooth controlled arch that was about to sink about a foot away from his target. They needed to move closer to his pass. ‘Go onnn, get it!’ A rush of feeling swarmed his face, heat rising beneath the skin, invisible to the eye. So much easier to watch from down below, drifting in between cheering support and pleasant daydreams of hovering just beyond a Keeper’s shoulder, making his own fantasy saves. Up there the blood rushed, heart thudding in exertion and excitement and every mistake he made made Solomon far more aware of himself. Not quite the dreamer, now someone who lived.
0 <font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font> Turning the game around. 0 <font color = yellow>Solomon Asa {Chaser}</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font>

May 15, 2012 7:38 PM
Gareth cringed slightly when the bludger he aimed struck one of the yellow Chasers in the back. Flying wasn’t the only aspect of Quidditch that he didn’t care much for, but he’d long ago accepted that his build was best suited for Beating, and of the four positions it was the one that required the least amount of diving. Thank Merlin he hadn’t been built like Cepheus, there was no way he’d be able to handle the Seeker position. Just trying to keep up with his wayward roommate made his stomach clench and attempt to tie itself around his spine. Chasers didn’t have to do a lot of diving, but if the Quaffle was missed, they were expected to go after it. The same was true of Keeping. Bludgers on the other hand were not subject to the laws of gravity which greatly reduced the need to point his broom down at any sort of painfully sharp angle.

Now if only his roommate would stop careening all over the place he would be happy. The Teppenpaw Seeker decided to join Cepeus’s mad run before attempting a feign that caused the large boy’s lip to curl slightly in distain. It was a stunt that his idiot cousin Gawain liked to pull. Two summers ago he failed to pull out of the dive and crashed spectacularly, breaking his arm and fracturing his knee. He was pleased that Cepheus didn’t fall for it. There weren’t any bludgers near enough for Gareth to take advantage of her stunt, so Gareth gave her a dark look before returning to his guard position above and slightly behind Cepheus.

He wasn’t sure if it was his look or something else, but the rival Seeker chose to abandon her attempts at drawing Cepheus in or hanging on his broom tail in an effort to reach the Snitch first if he happened to spot it. Following dutifully as his Seeker took the high ground, Gareth focused on the game and not the way his stomach lurched unhappily. The rival Seeker kept her attention on him and Ceph for a while before becoming engrossed in her own search of the lower area of the Pitch. When a bludger strayed too close for Gareth’s comfort he flew forward placing himself between the dark ball and Cepheus, then taking careful aim he lashed out, sending the Bludger down and at just the right angle to target the rival Seeker.
0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> I think not 0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font>

May 15, 2012 8:00 PM
Derry knew it was risky, hitting a bludger into the crowd of Chasers as Crotalus moved in for a goal. He was sure enough of his skill that he didn't think he'd hit anyone other than Renee by mistake on the first pass, but then there was the ricochet and Topher was around somewhere, too. Topher, like Derry, was too late to save his teammate from a hit and Renee took it on the leg, but still caught the Quaffle and made a run at the goal. It wasn't as much of a help to Kirstenna as he would have liked, but his captain still made the save.

Derry cheered even as he recaptured the bludger that Topher had attempted to use to cause more mayhem, and this time he was even in time to prevent any additional damage. Feeling pleased with himself, and with Solomon who was bring the Quaffle out of the immediate danger zone, Derry followed after them. Controlling the bludger with short careful taps, he watched and waited, knowing that Solomon stopped before throwing the ball. As this was unusual behavior in a Chaser, he expected this to give him a great opportunity against the Crotali who wouldn't be expecting it.

They would likely shoot right on by, then have to turn around again. Derry meant to take advantage of that moment of confusion, when they were noticed Solomon and the Quaffle had just stopped and they'd have to pull around sharply to make an intercept.

The moment came and Derry swung his bat. The wood cracked on metal and the black ball flew toward the red-clad Chaser who was intent on interrupting Teppenpaw's possession of the Quaffle.
0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> Keep it going, folks! 0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font>

May 15, 2012 11:00 PM
Arista was flying high with excitement when the first game was announced. Teppenpaw would be playing Crotalus. For this, she was glad. That meant that hers and Brielle’s first game wouldn’t be up against Amira, which was a REALLY good thing. It also meant that it gave Amira some time to stew over being made Chaser and not Seeker like she’d wanted. Arista wanted nothing more than to play her best and help to win the game for Teppenpaw and for Kirstenna.

Arista was happy though, that her sisters were all enjoying playing Quidditch, as she was, with the exception of Addison who much preferred to keep her feet on the ground. Andri had made reserve for Aladren, just like Brielle had made the same position for her beloved Teppenpaw House. Now four of the five Thornton girls were playing (at least at practices). The night before the first game, the oldest Thornton sent her younger sister off to bed early, to rest up, “just in case“ she’d told her.

Arista, herself, sat up a little later just thinking. She was thinking about being older, the oldest chaser for sure. She had to be sure that she was on pointe tomorrow at the game. It was important. She knew Kirstenna was counting on her and she needed the win as much as her Captain did. This was Teppenpaw’s year and the fifth year knew it with her whole heart. With a yawn, she knew it was time to head to bed herself, so up she went to a nice solid sleep.

Waking up the next morning, she got ready for the day, ate her breakfast and got herself ready for the game itself. The weather was beautiful. This was both a good and a bad thing, but Arista wasn’t going to let it stop her or her team from the win they desperately wanted! The fifth year knew that this was anybody’s game, but that was not going to stop her from making it Teppenpaws through and through.

The teams gathered in clumps of yellow and red. Kirstenna started talking and Brielle (who was standing next to her, ready to watch the game in case she’d need to go in for someone) smiled broadly and listened just as intently as her oldest sister was to Kirstenna’s words. Her speech was short and to the point. Ris knew she was right in that this was their year. It was just a matter of how they were going to get it. The redhead looked around at her teammates. First, Kirstenna, strongest Keeper there was at Sonora. She wouldn’t let them down, Ris knew that. Then there was Derry and Laurie as the Beaters. The boys had a rhythm that made the oldest Thornton so excited to maybe have one day with her sister on the Pitch. Then there was Kate. Her roommate, and the Seeker. Kate was a really good Seeker, she just hadn’t won them a game yet. But that didn’t mean today wasn’t the day to change that around! Arista had so much faith in Kate, especially since Crotalus was playing a very inexperienced Seeker against her. Then there were the Chasers… Herself, Solomon and little Marcus Crosby. It was an interesting mix and she knew it. Marcus had been wonderful at practices and even though Solomon hadn’t really wanted to Chase he’d done a great job too. She, as the eldest Chaser, felt in charge of trying to get them up to speed and she’d done as good a job as she could have.

Coach Pierce spoke amongst the crowd and asked Kirstenna to shake hands with Sam. They did as they were asked and Arista caught Solomon’s eyes and saw the smile on his face. She knew it was a sort of apology to her from him but she shook her head and mouthed, “You’ll be fine! Trust in yourself!” Coach Pierce told the teams the rules and blew her whistle to start the game. The Quaffle was thrown and she mounted her broom and shot up into the air after it.

Marcus got the Quaffle and almost immediately dropped it! “You can do it Marcus!” she called out to him as loudly as she could muster. She knew the first year was doing his best and she knew he could do even better if he allowed himself to. The ball passed from hand to hand and then Arista heard a CRACK!

“SOLOMON!” she called as she realized what the crack had been. “Ohmygod!” she said all in one word as she sped up faster and faster to get to him. Solomon slumped on his broom and Arista knew what had happened at once. I have to get to him, I may need to catch him! she thought to herself as she sped up even faster. He was dropping, drifting downwards and that was just not okay. Arista spotted one of the red-robed beaters nearby him and she called out, “Leave him alone! Find someone your own size!” She was angry that someone would have the gall to go after one who’s already hurt! Then the thought entered her mind, Oh god… If he’s hurt Brielle will have to play! She looked down towards her sister on the bench, seeing the look in her eyes as she’d gotten closer and closer to her. Her sweet little Drama Queen of a sister looked terrified out of her mind watching their teammate fall, but then she turned back to Solomon and Arista found that he was flying back up again? What? she thought, confused. After all, she’d heard the crack and knew how it felt to be hit with a Bludger smack in the back!

Renee had apparently gotten the Quaffle back from Marcus’ dropping of it and was over by Kirstenna. Arista heard the roar of the crowd around her as Kirstenna saved the goal. Solomon flew upward and the red-headed girl followed him and watched as Kirstenna threw him the ball.

Ris knew how much he had to be hurting, but the fact that he was determined to play and seemingly to her, to win was enough for her! “YOU CAN DO IT SOLOMON!” she called to him as a red-clad Crotalus Team member got between him and her. “Oh no you don’t!” she said to them and flew up and around the other team. The gap having opened, and Solomon having spotted it, she saw the ball right in her outstretched hands even before it was there.

He halted in his flight and Arista and the other Teppenpaws alone knew what that meant. He’s going to pass! she thought as his eyes locked onto hers with his smooth arch. She flew right at it and caught it easily, pulling it into her chest. She held it tightly there and flew faster and faster away from the crowd of players wearing red.

She didn’t go too far before she looked around her. She heard the recognized sound of a Bludger and ducked it completely as she spotted one of her fellow Chasers. Locking eyes with them she nodded and threw the Quaffle straight and fast towards them. Once it was on its way, she followed behind it so she could catch it again if there was an attempt at an interception.
0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> Turning it towards TEPP to WIN! 0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 16, 2012 10:30 AM
The Teppenpaw Chasers, Sam was increasingly convinced, were doing it on purpose, being weird and not playing the game in ways that made sense, just to mess with him and the others on his team. So far, one had run into the Quaffle and then stopped to show it off to Kirstenna, one had started yelling at the Beaters and then just yelling, with no thought toward saving her breath in case her team actually needed a Chaser instead of a mama bear cheerleader, and then the last one stopped dead to make a pass, which Thornton somehow managed to shut her mouth long enough to catch and carry on toward Nic with.

On her way in, though, she had told him that he wasn’t going to do something, such as intercept the pass from Stopping Boy, Second Edition. Sam didn’t like that kind of thing. The Teppenpaw Chasers were all starting to make him think they were actually the time-traveled demon spawn of Arnold and Renée from the future because there was simply no way other than all possessing those two’s DNA in a deadly mosaic of inherited traits that three human beings could annoy him so much in such a short period of time, but at least the other two had yet to try to tell him what to do. Now that he was turned around properly and had avoided Derry Pierce’s Bludger by the width of a hair, Sam went after her.

He was sorry when the Bludger she missed didn’t hit her, but it did change where she was in the air. As soon as she began to pass, he started up in the air, intending to grab the ball right out of it and get going toward Kirstenna – only to see Mouthy Girl coming after it, risking a pile-up. Deciding to cut his losses, Sam stopped his rise and, with his extended arm, smacked the Quaffle, as hard as he could against the Pennifold Charm on it, and let it fall how it fell rather than going in for a collision, diving as soon as it began to move off its trajectory.

It was, to his surprise, actually turning out to be a pretty good game today. His team was dominating the Pitch, but not so much that it got kind of dull and inspired too many of them to go do dumb stuff that could make them go splat in a few minutes. They had now seen the tricks, however stupid some of them seemed, the Teppenpaws were going to use to mess with passes; now, they had to combat them. Beaters seemed like the best option, especially with Triumph Midget and Second Edition.

Now the trick was just to see if a Crotalus had come out with the Quaffle while he was avoiding a crash, or if he was going to have to risk life and limb after the Quaffle again in the very near future....
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> Let's get it going the other way again. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 16, 2012 11:35 AM
It was always disconcerting to look at a patch of air one second and be safe, then look back at it two seconds later and find a Bludger heading her way, but Kate would rather be disconcerted than Bludgered, which made having those two seconds to see the ball ‘o doom heading toward her so she could get out of the way far preferable to not having them. Seeing this one coming, then, she flew first to the left, getting out of its direct path, and then, since there weren’t any other warm bodies in her immediate proximity and it was unlikely to cease its attack without another target to latch onto, she flew up, abandoning her current search, toward the main game, veering as close to the nearest red robe she was pretty sure didn’t have a bat as she felt she could, then weaving around for a moment before rising again to see if she had shaken it.

She had, or at least it looked to her like she had. Squinting up toward the rival Seeker and his bodyguard, Kate waved for a second, just to let them know she was still standing, and then resumed looking for the Snitch, knowing it had to be somewhere. It could just as easily be somewhere near her as someone near Cepheus, or at least somewhere she’d notice it enough before he did that she’d be able to beat him to the punch.

Kate flexed her shoulders beneath her bright yellow robes, making her long, light brown ponytail sway against her back. That made her shrug again, since it felt kind of weird, particularly with the back of her neck starting to sweat. Quidditch gear wasn’t the coolest thing, at least in the temperature sense and probably the fashion one, too, though she didn’t know enough about that to be sure, ever invented to wear, and with the sun out and bright, it was something she guessed could impact the game by itself, right along with getting headaches if they squinted too much at the sun.

Quidditch, Quidditch, Quidditch. Crazy stuff. At least it was only rarely that the game went on long enough and at the same time presented the Seeker with little enough interference for it to become boring. If worst came to worst, there would always usually be a Bludger sailing out of the wild blue yonder to shake things up every now and then. At the moment, she was hoping it was more of a ‘then’, since she’d had a brush close enough to ‘now’ to keep her interested for a while longer...

…And had just seen a glint, at a long angle down and to her right, that could, she thought, just could, be the Golden Snitch. Kate dove for real this time, hoping she’d be able to pull out of it if she was wrong and not caring if she did crash land so long as she grabbed the ball first if she was right.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> I think so. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font>

May 16, 2012 5:04 PM
Rats! Marcus thought as the Crotalus Chaser grabbed a hold of the Quaffle. Soon thereafter he shrugged it off, however. Beating himself up wouldn’t help. It was okay. His team would soon regain position of the red orb, and they’d have lots of fun doing it. That was the important thing, after all!

And then--Oh jeez!--the Quaffle went back and forth so very many times, and the small eleven year old ended up dreadfully confused. Seriously, who had the Quaffle?! And how come they kept passing so much? Like, obviously Quidditch was a team sport, but holy cow! This was really, really hard!

He found himself darting back and forth way more than he expected. Eventually, though, Solomon passed it to Arista, who then went to throw. However, Crotalus Captain/Chaser Guy kind of just… did he smack it? It looked like it! Either way, it wasn’t that far from Marcus, so he darted after it.

This time, his mission of catching was successful—and totally on purpose, too! The blond remembered that stopping was bad, so he bolted down the Pitch as quick as his broom would take him. His grip was firm on both the ball and his broom, and he found himself pretty close to the hoops, the Keeper—whose legs seemed almost as long as Marcus’s whole body—probably waiting.

Marcus didn’t try to fake. He set his eyes on the left-most hoop and rocketed towards it, his tongue poking out of the corner of his lips in concentration. The ball left his fingertips with intent and fairly accurate aim, but he found himself unable to break his momentum. With a speckle of fear in his expression, he pulled up dramatically and suddenly halted in the ar. He had no idea where the Quaffle ended up, so he turned and slowly started the other direction in case Crotalus had gained possession.
12 <font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font> I don't like that plan. 225 <font color=yellow>Marcus Crosby, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font>

May 16, 2012 8:06 PM
First game of the season!

It was the first game of the season and Laurie couldn’t be more excited about it. Quidditch was the only highlight of his rather gloom existence at Sonora right now. He had been struggling with being away from his friends, but he was afraid of what could happen. However, Quidditch made his sadness go away and a glimpse of his old self surfaced every time he practiced or conversed about the sport that basically controlled his life. Every since he had been appointed Beater he had been practicing like a madman to be better. Laurie didn’t want to be better than everyone, no he wanted to better than Preston and erase the smugness that oozed from his cousin’s every pore. The Teppenpaw wasn’t vindictive, but Preston had completely ruined his life, and he wanted to feel like he was able to get some retribution from what he had done. The older Aladren just happened to bring out a side of him he actually didn’t like.

The redhead was impatiently waiting for Coach Pierce to announce the start of the game. The weather was epic, and he was ready to kick some Aladren bum. The grin on his face was the usual grin he always had when he was around Michael and Kitty. If he was honest with himself, his resolution to stay away was slowly and surely dying within himself. He wanted to be with them; no he needed to be with them. He just didn’t like the lonely person he was becoming in his constant state of sadness, and his friends were all that prevented him from becoming a person he didn’t like. He needed to come up with a way of being with them without causing any problems at home.

Anyways, the second he heard the whistle blow, Laurie was up in the air enjoying the wind hitting his face and carrying away all of his worries and troubles. That was the beauty of Quidditch, the sport was able to cleanse you, at least for the time the game went on. Flying was like leaving everything on the floor and just enjoying the moment, and he needed that.

His green-eyes quickly looked around as the rest of the players took their positions and the game actually began. He looked for the ball that he would be in charge of. He grinned at the thought of finally beating at a game. He thought that he made a good beating team with Derry, but that was just his opinion. As soon as he saw that murderous ball, Laurie flew behind it and swung his bat against it. The noise that came from the collision was music to his ears and he watched for just a few seconds as the bludger made its way towards a Crotalus player.
0 <font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font> FINALLY! 0 <font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font>

May 16, 2012 8:34 PM
Nic hustled over to the Crotalus goals after the Coach's whistle blew. He still wasn't a particularly speedy broom flier over longer distances, with his broom and skills more tailored to short bursts and sharp turns, but he reach the Crotalus goals in one of his better times. There had been a couple of games over the years when he had only barely beaten the Quaffle there.

This wasn't one of them.

Turning around to assess the game once he reached his position, he saw the chasers far off on Kirstenna's side of the field. Good, he thought. He thought his performance last year had spoken well for his improvement as a Keeper and he no longer felt he had anything to prove. If Rachel was watching, she could cheer for her cousin who was now captain, and maybe, if she wanted to, look over Nic's way during slower moments of play and check him out.

No longer bone thin (though still definitely more slender than not), Nic was starting to fill out enough that he more resembled an adult human than a bean pole. He would have liked his hair to be a shade or two darker than its rather unremarkable brown but otherwise, he almost believed it when his mother got all misty-eyed and and called him handsome. He kind of hoped maybe Rachel would agree. Red, he thought, was a good color on him, so if he was very lucky, her eye might be drawn in his direction on more than one occasion this game.

He took another moment to check on the clump of Chasers, but they were all still way the heck over on the far side of the pitch. He guessed something was going on over there because the stands erupted in groans and cheers. Teppenpaw cheers, and Crotalus groans, he guessed, largely based on the fact that the Coach's whistle remained silent and she did not announce that the score had changed.

Nic wondered if maybe he should try asking Rachel out again. There was not dance this year, with her required to dance in front of everybody, so the chances of her saying yes were much lower than the last time he'd tried it. On the other hand, she had said yes under those conditions, so maybe she would say yes under other ones as well. Sonora had no movie theatre, no restaurants, no ice cream shoppes, or any of the normal date-like activities he might have asked her to at home, so he wasn't even sure what he might ask her out to do. Walk in the gardens? Go to the other Quidditch game? Get ice cream from the Cascade Hall? All of those ideas seemed lame.

He jolted up on his broom as he suddenly realized the Teppenpaw Chasers had crossed the central line of the pitch and were heading right for him. His broom ran a light circuit around his goals to warm up and get his momentum going, all the while keeping an eye on the Quaffle's progress.

It was the little one who approached him with the ball, zeroing in on the right hoop (his left, Nic's right). Nic was ready for a feint or a last minute pass to the far end, but as the kid got closer, his body telegraphed that he was committed and he was doing this. Nic committed as well and pushed for the far hoop, getting there in time to catch the ball with both hands, his cleanest save ever. He generally hedged his bets more and only managed a one handed shove to knock the ball off its goal-threatening trajectory.

"Ha!" he crowed in triumph, holding the ball over his head as he looked for an opening to pass to one of his teammates. Finding one, he passed the red ball to the red robed Chaser. "Go bother Kirstenna with that!" he called cheerfully, feeling in unusually good spirits after his first save of the game. He had matched Kirstenna's save, and done it with style. Granted, the Chaser who had tried to score was a tiny little eleven year old who probably hadn't been playing very long, but Nic would take his victories where he could get them.

He continued to broom-pace in front of his goals, not letting his guard down while the ball was still in his territory.
1 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> That's my cue, isn't it? 165 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font>

May 16, 2012 9:09 PM
Aubrielle knew that the next day was going to be a big day for Teppenpaw. So it didn’t surprise the eleven year old when her oldest sister, Arista, sent her to bed early. Brielle knew that she wasn’t going to be starting in the game, and she was frankly glad for that. She was getting progressively more and more nervous as that day had gone on. She hated that she was actually getting cold feet over this. She wasn’t normally the nervous type, but there was something about not knowing the script she’d gotten herself into that made her worry entirely too much about what she was about to do. Sure, she wasn’t a starter, but that didn’t mean she wasn’t going to end up playing after all…

Would it? she thought as she lay there in her bed in the dark room. Aubrielle knew that the Pecari roster had made Amira really mad and that Andri had also made reserve on Aladren’s team. This way, four of the five Thornton girls that were at school so far were going to be playing Quidditch. The ineffable desire that the girl had to join her sisters in playing the game was not able to even be uttered by her. There was no logical reason why she would want to play other than to follow in her sister’s footsteps, which she’d never wanted to do before. Why do I want to do it now? she wondered to herself as she shrugged. She twisted her blankets around her tighter and closed her eyes tightly, seeing herself sharing the Broadway stages with all the famous stars like Idina Menzel, Kirsten Chenowith and more.

She was green and flying through the air as Elphaba, wearing a corsette and running around underground in the pipes like Eponine. She was singing in a forest like the Bakers Wife or Little Red, dancing through Times Square like a Newsie. Spelling in a Bee like Logainne, flying across the world to meet her husband’s son like Ellen. She was anything, anyone, who wasn’t HER. There was something about playing someone else on stage that gave the eleven year old the same adrenaline as her third year sister, Amira, playing Seeker had done. It simply occurred to the girl that perhaps she’d find her adrenaline that way too, even before she can get to be on Broadway.

Finally, dreaming of being a star and having her name in lights, the eleven year old girl fell asleep. She dreamt of winning the game, of getting her spot on stage one day and becoming a huge success with her name in neon lights. When she heard rustling in the room around her, she groggily opened her eyes and moaned when she realized it was time to get up. I was enjoying that dream world… she thought to herself as she yawned and got up to ready herself for the day.

She went with Arista to eat, knowing that she’d have to do that or her sister would tell their mother she wasn’t eating, even though she didn’t want to eat. Her stomach was tied in knots worse than any show had given her before and she didn’t like that feeling at all. I don’t like this, not one little bit. she thought as she looked at her sister. Knowing Arista wanted to go, she got up and walked with her to the Pitch.

The teams were split in two patches. One Red, that was Crotalus. The other, Yellow. That was Teppenpaw. Her house, and the house of her two oldest sisters. Brielle looked up at the sky above her. It was a beautiful temperature outside and though it was a little bit sunny, she didn’t think anything of it. She’d be on the bench anyway, what did it matter?

Kirstenna gave her little speech and the first year listened with as much pure attention as she could pull out of her nervous mind and then at her oldest sister before she turned back to Kirstenna again. Kirstenna shook hands with Sam, the Crotalus Captain and the first string players mounted their brooms and she mounted her bench.

Marcus, her fellow first year, got the Quaffle! “YES! GO MARCUS!” she called loud and clear, feeling like a cheerleader from the bench. The only thing she felt like she was missing was a pair of pompoms! Marcus dropped the Quaffle and her face fell. Oh no! she thought as she watched as the ball passed from player to player, red to red, yellow to yellow, above her. B heard a loud crack and her head moved fast to see Solomon slumped onto his broom. Her eyes widened almost to the size of saucers and her heart pounded in her chest. “Oh my god…” she said softly as the realization hit her like a ton of bricks. If he gets hurt and pulled from the game, I have to play… Suddenly all the color sunk right off her face and she paled in comparison to her normal cheery cheeks.

The game went on above her head and she lost her focus completely. Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens… she sang to herself to try to calm herself down. When the dogs bite, when the bees sting, and I’m feeling sad, I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad… she went on as the cheers and boos from the stands swam around her head.

She watched the game happening above her, but still sang to herself. Aubrielle started humming the tune for her song aloud, though who was really there to hear it? That didn’t matter to her. What mattered was that SHE heard it and that it helped her to feel better right then and there.
0 <font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font> From the Bench 0 <font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font>

May 16, 2012 10:02 PM

Arista had seen the ball get hit right out of the trajectory on the way to her fellow yellow-clad Chaser. “Darnit!” she said as she bolted right after it until she realized that Marcus had grabbed it up. “Atta boy!” she called after him and slowed her pace just a little bit to follow him since he’d caught the Quaffle once again. She stayed as open as she could for him to pass back, but he just kept on going. Since they were already midway across the Pitch when he’d gotten the ball, he was more than halfway across. She followed relatively close-by him, just in case, but held back when he shot for the hoop. If he didn’t make it near the hoops she could have caught the ball and tried again. It seems that his aim was much better than any of them had hoped and at least went nearby the hoop it looked like he’d aimed for.

Nic caught the Quaffle with both of his hands, but it was an A-OK shot by her fellow Chaser. She smiled at Marcus as he passed her by and she nodded her head, pleased with his hard work and his attempt. When Nic threw back the Quaffle towards one of the red-robed Chasers, Arista flew up out of nowhere and intercepted the ball.

Not a word was uttered by the Teppenpaw fifth year as she faked throwing the ball first to the hoop on her right, then to the hoop on her left before sending it long and hard right at the center hoop. Her fast ball pitches from home had translated themselves into throwing the Quaffle in Quidditch, so she only hoped that if Nic tried to catch her throw he’d be pushed back and it would go in anyway!
0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> Here's another cue for you Nic! 0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 16, 2012 11:09 PM
If Topher had held off on squishing Triumph Midget because he was a first year, Sam was going to hex him to roughly the level of goo. He thought he was an okay guy off the Pitch, and imagined Topher was the same, but on the Pitch…stuff was different. It was like poker. The guy who played was the guy who paid, and it didn’t really matter if he had a messed-up background or was eleven. Triumph Midget had to have gotten a pretty good idea of what he was getting into after this long in practices unless Kirstenna was completely incompetent as a captain; if he couldn’t take a hit, he didn’t have any business coming onto the Pitch.

Since Nic was on top of it, though, Sam decided to be in a merciful mood and give his Beater the benefit of the doubt. He smiled as his roommate neatly blocked the shot, went in for the catch, and –

He yelled a few choice words at movement coming too quickly out of his peripheral vision, nearly running into Mouthy Girl again as she darted in there. He was tempted to yell for his Beater, too – she definitely needed squishing, this was two moves she’d kept him from making the way he wanted to – but bit the inside of his mouth instead, not wanting to give her, or in fact any of the others, any warning.

Come on, Topher, he thought furiously, if distantly as he watched for the slightest chance to get back at the ball, whether Mouthy succeeded or not. A goal didn’t mean too much; he would be sore if she got the first goal, but it wasn’t as much of a deal as being marginally competent, which her fellows weren’t and all his were. I refuse to look like an idiot compared to the Teppenpaw Chasers. At least there was something to be said for losing to Aladren; everyone had done that in recent history. Teppenpaw hadn’t won a game in years, and he didn’t want to be the one who was captain when, eventually, they finally did. Today was not their day; Kirstenna was a great girl, but if she was going to win, she had better hope that either Aladren was down on its luck next year or that they put her up against Pecari, because today was not going to be their day.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> It's also my Beater's. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 17, 2012 12:27 AM
From what he’d heard from third parties who were not going to be directly involved in the event, his sister had wished him luck in the game today. As far as Topher could see, she had not included some kind of weird jinx where him hearing about it would make him have bad luck, but the wishes of Caroline Gardiner didn’t seem to be very effective in getting some things, anyway. There had been no major disasters in the game so far, but neither had there really been anything he’d call a great moment for him or the Crotalus team. 

Topher thought that one of the Teppenpaw Chasers was yelling at him, but he wasn’t too clear about it, and so dismissed it, just looking for opening. Derry got a Bludger off in Sam’s general direction, but the captain avoided it well enough, and Topher took a swing at it, but this was not enough to keep the ball out of Teppenpaw possession; the next thing he knew, the Tepps were taking a shot at the goals, and Laurie Stratford, the new guy of the four of them, was taking a shot at Crotalus.

His first priority was to get the Bludger away from a red robe, so he didn’t aim specifically at a yellow target at first, but as soon as he was in greater control – this was an awkward angle; he hated it when anyone got near a goal, because it made his job pretty darn hard when he wasn’t risking his own people, but clearly the Teppenpaw Beaters were willing to try that, so he would have to, too; a big thing in Quidditch was being able to see what the other guy did and then one-up it – he took a harder, more focused swing, wishing he could aim at the girl who’d just stolen the ball but knowing there was a good chance he’d actually succeed in just hitting Nic if she knew it was coming and moved, or at least that he’d mess up the save. If either of the boy yellows lost their seat, though, that would be a start; they had both touched the Quaffle, after all.

Once the Quaffle got back in play – he willed his side’s Chasers to make that happen this time, once Nic got that second shot business taken care of; apparently, Teppenpaw was pretty good at learning recently, but if they repeated anything except maybe that move that they’d done so far which had caught him off-guard this game, they were going to hurt, so he would be interested to see if they learned more – though, he was definitely taking a shot at Arista. If she was going to do that, she had to go, and concussing a fifth year didn’t bother him even the slight amount a first year might. That she was a girl didn’t provide a replacement supply of botherment for him in place of her age; he’d grown up around girls who fell off their brooms right along with the boys, then got up to play again, at least if their mothers would let them back out that day, and he didn’t associate protective mothers with girls, either, because his was as bad about that as anyone’s.

Plus, until this year, only Seeker in the entire school hadn’t been a girl. If he had been squeamish about setting a Bludger on a girl, he thought the past three years would have cured him pretty well. He’d gone after the Pecari Seeker, some girl, the last time they played, as he remembered it, after some Pecari bruised Marissa up a little. It would be bad to hit a girl anywhere else, at least if she didn't hit first and in a pretty serious way, but out here, it was all fair in mini-war.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> Right here, boss 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font>

May 17, 2012 12:45 AM
Arista felt eyes on her back as she made her shot and knew that there were red-robed players all around her. She wasn't going to let it stop her from trying, but she wouldn't stay still either. When she felt the whoosh of the bludger flying by her, she ducked out of the way and regained her balance even better than it had been already. This was now her fifth year chasing for Teppenpaw and she wasn't going to let anyone else stop her. Not even Topher. Sure, he was a Beater, but he was younger than she by a year. Topher was in Addi's year. It didn't matter that he was a boy or that he was a Beater and had one of those blasted bats. She would still beat him out.

She didn’t wait to see if her shot made it in, Arista figured she’d learn if it did or not by the sounds of the people in the stands like her sisters and cousin Clara. She flew down and around to avoid the bludger she heard so close nearby her. The redhead didn’t want to give Topher any ideas he didn’t have already, but if he thought he was going to get her with the black ball he was drastically mistaken.

Ris wasn’t going to let the ball beat her out of a Teppenpaw win. There’s no way. she thought to herself as she watched what was going on around her. Sweat was starting to bead around the base of her neck and she wasn’t liking it so much. There’s not much I can do about it yet though. Not until Kate gets the Snitch… she went on in her mind. She glanced quickly around the Pitch to see Kate diving down, determined look in her eyes.

I’ll bet she’s seen it! she thought. “COME ON KATE! YOU GOT THIS!” she called as she avoided another flying black ball.
0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> Good try... NO LUCK 0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 17, 2012 1:12 AM
Perhaps it was a good thing that he hadn't followed Bauer. When he'd looked over at her direction again, she was no longer heading straight for the ground, but turned her head around this way and that. It was confusing, but Cepheus stood his ground, or, technically, his spot in the air, and looked around aimlessly for gold. Cepheus was extremely grateful for his roommate. He felt that he could concentrate more on looking for the snitch and not worry as much about bludgers. Of course, it was a bit ludicrous not to be concerned about getting pummeled with the iron balls flying around, but he could just be less concerned.

Cepheus narrowed his eyes at Bauer, trying to shield his eyes from the sun, and watched her sail down again. He didn't exactly see what she saw, but she definitely seemed to have more of a purpose. He lowered his broom, watching her curiously. He drifted a bit, and then decided to follow her at a slower pace. He lowered his broom slightly, his eyes peeled for a glint of gold, and then he saw the glint that she had seen. His broom lurched forward almost without his conscious decision to go, and followed her close behind. The glint leveled and Cepheus was grateful he didn't have to go smashing into the ground just to get it. He was desperate to win, but he wasn't sure if he was so terribly desperate to break his bones during the match.

He followed Bauer in her pursuit, and then followed the glint of gold ahead of them. He tried to see if it really was the snitch or something trying to trick them, but, really, what could possibly trick them on this pitch? In the middle of a match? His palms were getting sweaty, he was gripping the wood so tight, and the speed of his broom was making it a bit more difficult to see. His short blonde hair was a muck, his heart thudding in his chest, and his tiny frame allowing him to shoot forward faster. The thought of snatching the snitch and feeling the gold in his fingers gave him an ineffable feeling of immense hope. He could see the trophy now. If they won this match, they would win them all, and then the Quidditch Cup would be theirs. Crotalus would finally have it, and Cepheus would be a part of that. The vision coaxed him to increase his speed, though it wasn't exactly possible at this point, but he didn't want to lose it. Not now. Not ever.

And then the gold disappeared. It was as if Cepheus had blinked and the bloody snitch had just disappeared, vanished in thin air. It had been, after all, just a glint. He hadn't seen the actual ball of gold itself, but it didn't console his screaming brain. He looked at Bauer, wondering if she could still see it. He didn't want to follow false leads, but had that been a false one? Cepheus wanted to pull his hair out, but in his ire his bum had slipped off the broom a bit, scaring him back into reality. His knuckles were white as he gripped the wood for life. His bottom half was hanging onto the broom by the underside of his knee, and he was thankful for joints. It was funny how thankful one was for convenient body parts during a Quidditch match.

He swung back onto his broom, shaking a little once again at the prospect of falling off. He couldn't get that physically upset again. Ceph realised he'd lost a bit of time being upset at himself and looked around once more. He kept an eye out for Bauer, but didn't want to be misled by her. Any glint of gold would do, really. Any.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> That's not called sportsmanship, Miss. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 17, 2012 1:19 AM
To Topher’s surprise, the ball went after Arista anyway – kind of like it knew what he was planning to do later and was deciding to spare him the trouble. Or maybe cause him some, since she did, as he’d feared she might, manage to get out of the way. He had trailed his Bludger, though, in case he needed to recover or the chance opened up to keep a Teppenpaw from getting it no matter how the play went, so he sped up and hit it away from any Crotali….

 …Then glanced down and, after a second, began to feel as though his birthday might have just come early. And possibly involved extra-frosting ice cream cake, which was one of those things he didn’t feel right asking for after about age six but still found to be a major highlight of any birthday where his mom bought it anyway.

There was always a certain satisfaction that went with a good, strong hit, he had discovered, and even with working around a tricky problem without injuring any of his teammates while injuring someone he actually wanted injured, but he was sure there was one thing all Beaters loved, and that was when the target willingly separated from the group. That was, he felt, practically begging him to take his best shot. After a Quidditch game went on for a while, simple was very welcome, every now and then, and though this one hadn’t really taken up that much time yet, the Bludgers had flown around enough and the Quaffle changed hands enough that he at least didn’t object to something that looked more straightforward. 

He hit the Bludger downward hard and fast, followed, and then, with her shouting something at yet someone else after dodging the ball’s downward progression, whacked it toward her again, putting both arms behind the swing and balancing carefully on his broom for a second. Beaters were usually somewhat bigger guys, or in Demelza Eagle’s case girls, than him, after all; he guessed the extra weight helped them stay anchored when they swung. It probably helped with shoulders being sore after making a couple of hits in quick succession like that, too, though he didn’t exactly have a book of evidence on either topic, and wasn’t interested enough to go get one. He pulled off the hits, which was the important thing – well, the important thing after hitting her.

Looking up for a second, he saw what she was shouting at, but wrote it off as in the hands of higher powers and the second years. It was too far away for him to get involved in, and not his part of the game, anyway. He had a Bludger to keep up with, and probably another Teppenpaw Chaser to aim for. She was the biggest problem for his Chasers, but the other two, as exemplified by the little one, could cause problems, too. Anyone he hit, or even spooked badly enough, was doing something to help out, anyway.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> If at first you don't succeed.... 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font>

May 17, 2012 8:03 AM
Nic had been ready for a return shot. To be fair, he hadn't really expected it to come back this quickly, but he had been prepared for it to happen. Crotalus liked doing it so he practiced against it on a regular basis. He could usually handle four or five shots before he let one through nowadays.

He hadn't gotten too far from the hoop he had just defended, and for a moment it looked like Arista was going to go for the far one. Nic pushed his broom for the most distant hoop, just hoping he could get there in time. Even for a guy with arms two miles long, it was difficult to get from the left most hoop to the right most hoop in mere seconds.

Then she turned away from that hoop, making as if she were going to go for the one he'd just left instead. He didn't turn around though. He got a sense she wasn't going for that one. It could be the latent talent of having two seers for parents, or it could just be a bias against expecting people to shoot for the same hoop two times in a row when he hadn't entirely cleared the vicinity yet, but he only hesitated in his acceleration toward the distant hoop for a moment, thinking her first feint was still her actual intent.

Then she went for the center hoop.

Nic yanked at the handle of his broom and pushed it as fast as it could go. When he first started Keeping, a stiff breeze might have knocked him off course, but now he was six foot plus tall and weighted a hundred and sixty-four pounds. He outmassed the air filled Quaffle by a solid margin, so when his chest collided with it in front of the hoop, it knocked the breath from his lungs, but it came along with him at a upward diagonal across the face of the central goal.

He wrapped one arm around the ball to prevent it from rolling off his chest and falling down right in front of the undefended goals, and kept one hand on his broom as he tried to slow it down and keep from falling off after the high speed collision.

He was traveling at a great enough speed that he overshot the goal ring by about fifteen feet before he could slow his broom down again enough to begin a descent. Looking out at the players, he saw that Arista was thankfully occupied running away from Topher's bludgers, so he took the opportunity to throw the ball toward one of the red-robed Chasers who was watching him instead of that drama.

"I said," his voice follow the ball, this time far more an order than a joke because even Teppenpaw might get lucky sometime, "Go bother Kirstenna with that!"
1 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> Try, try again to bother Kirstenna and not me! 165 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> 0 5

<font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font>

May 17, 2012 11:49 AM
There were no excuses. There was no explanation either, except maybe Renée wandered a little too far into fantasy, though she’d felt pretty in the moment each time the Quaffle switched hands, flung through the air in passes she had been equally in charge of intercepting. She’d been naturally disappointed as Kirstenna blocked her shot (and there was always something that flashed across Kirstenna’s face when she looked at Renée, something strong, too strong to make Renée feel comfortable but it was enough to trigger curiosity about the looks she often garnered) but not too surprised, it was hard to get a shot past Kirstenna. It hadn’t been anything to rattle her, and the sun felt nice against the back of her neck, curls swept out of the way, and her vision had been clear, remained clear now. No excuses, no explanations, which left the horrible improbable possibility that the Teppenpaw chasers had simply outmaneuvered them.

It was frustrating to lose possession of the Quaffle to Aladren, but that was Aladren. Nerds constantly calculating possibilities and strategies and outcomes. It was like playing against a computer. When the dark skinned chaser caught Kirstenna’s pass she’d anticipated an easy interception, flying above him and waiting for the familiar motion of his arm rising, his body angling toward a teammate. She’d blinked when suddenly he’d disappeared from below, after a moment craning her neck around to see him complete a pass toward one of the Thornton girls (it was beyond her capabilities to remember the sisters’ or cousins’ names, they all rhymed or sounded the same or something, a bit of a blur muddled in her mind and perhaps they were all the one same person flickering in and out of different houses) and pull out of his unconventional break against the air.

The sound of beaters’ bats urged her forward, turning back her head, flattening her body against the dark wood broom, curving into it and rolling out of the way of a bludger, straightening right side up in the air again and continuing toward Crotalus goals where Nic hovered above them. An attempt on the goal, deflected, Sam got it, slapped it away, Thornton had it, another attempt on the goals, Nic got it and Renée blinked at his shouted order. There was a lot of shouting going on in the pitch, most of it emanating from the Thornton girl. A lot of pointless encouragement that was probably meant to partially distract Crotalus, but at least it showed she cared about her teammates. Renée showed she cared by darting forward and catching Nic’s pass against her chest, her direction curving around the goal posts, all the way around until she was speeding away from Crotalus territory, Quaffle locked safely in her hold.

Teppenpaw managed two attempts at the goals. Failed attempts but currently it was more than what Crotalus had managed and only Nic came out looking brilliant while his chasers had let slip possession again and again. Maybe they’d underestimated Teppenpaw, or maybe overestimated themselves. They were a better team of chasers but not so great that they could accomplish goals while slacking off. Renée felt like she had to come up with a reasonable explanation for why Teppenpaw had managed to push so far into their territory. She enjoyed challenges, and this game managed to become a surprising one, and none of the tension laced in her bones held concern that they wouldn’t win (except she forgot that the chasers only mattered if they scored 170 – 0 and Cepheus was so much more inexperienced than Kate and yet Kate had never won so maybe…) but she didn’t want to feel embarrassed for losing brief moments to Teppenpaw.

Flash of red in the corner of her eye. Renée swerved to the left, dipping below a Teppenpaw player, rising on their other side to make a quick pass toward her fellow chaser, shooting for the patch of space they were flying toward so they could grab it as they continued speeding toward the opposing goal posts. They glinted invitingly, sun striking metal, begging for assault. Renée dragged her eyes back toward the Quaffle, all to eager to have it back in her possession again.
0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> That's an order I'm happy to follow. 0 <font color = red>Renée Errant {Chaser}</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 17, 2012 1:33 PM
Kate’s vision had not physically narrowed, her peripheral vision was still there and theoretically functioning, but she felt almost as though she had blinders on as she pushed her broom hard, heading toward that sparkle she had seen. Her attention was hyper-focused on it, following its slightest movement, ready to jump if it did; she didn’t even really hear the crowd, or anything going on with the Quaffle, or even the Bludgers, though such fragments of independent consciousness as she had left hoped that was because there weren’t any in the area rather than because she was too focused to notice them.

She did, anyway, have enough attention left to see red when it got close in her side vision, and she knew that either one of the Chasers was doing something kind of weird or that Cepheus was catching up with her. Feeling a surge of frustration, she tried to make her broom go faster, to give her the last bit of juice it had in reserve, willing it to get her to the Snitch before he got there –

For half a second, maybe less, she glanced toward the opposition to see how close he was, how much time she had left, whether she was going to lose, and when she tore her eyes away and back to where the Snitch had been, there was nothing there. She gasped, almost cried out, as she scanned the air frantically for some sign, any sign, of where it might have gone, but it just wasn’t there anymore. It was gone again. Disappeared into thin air right in front of her nose.

Crying felt like something she wanted to do, but she knew not to – especially since Cepheus seemed to have blinked as well, and also found the Snitch gone when he looked again. That meant they were still even. That meant she still had a chance of catching it. They could still win this one, as long as she didn’t stop in disappointment and frustration and give his guardian Beater a good chance to get in a clear shot at her. That was going to be a problem very shortly, she suspected, unless she moved, because both of her Beaters seemed to be with the Chasers, meaning avoiding any Bludgers from Gareth would probably be up to her.

So, without further ado, she flew away, still looking for the elusive Snitch.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> Sportsmanship is for after the game, Mister. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font>

May 17, 2012 6:14 PM
Gareth was finding that keeping track of a Seeker was both harder and easier than he’d first expected. The term prior, the Crotalus Seeker had been a seventh year who hardly needed a first year Beater to play guard dog, so he’d divided his attention on protecting the remainder of the team, and doing his level best to knock the enemy Seeker out of play. He’d even managed to score once on the Aladren Seeker, though it hadn’t been quite enough to keep the Carey from catching the Snitch and pushing them out of the running for the Championship, but it had been a good hit and spoke well of his beating skills.

But now Crotalus was fielding a new Seeker, his friend and roommate, someone who did need his protection. The weight of knowledge that he was responsible for keeping Cepheus in one piece so that he could catch the Snitch and win the game for Crotalus settled on his broad shoulders. It wasn’t a crushing thing, but it did add more importance to his position than he was accustomed to. Giving his full attention safe guarding a single player made the game less complicated. All Gareth had to do was keep an eye out for the two opposing beaters instead of worrying about the rest of his team and looking for openings on the other team as well. He would leave that to Topher, as the more experienced player, he would know best how to exploit the other team and make the most of his hits.

The difficulty involved keeping up with a Seeker. When he was keeping track of the rest of the team he wasn’t required to try and keep pace with any particular player, let alone one who regularly dove at small shiny objects. Cepheus tore after the Tepp Seeker when it appeared the girl actually spotted something authentic instead of just trying another fake out. Gareth kept his own dive shallow, maintaining his vigil from a greater height as red and yellow fought for speed. His pale blue gaze ignored the head to head chance, instead he focused on locating his rival Beaters and where the bludgers were on the field to see if he could take advantage of one if the Teppenpaw Seeker pulled too far ahead. The iron balls were not close at hand, so he settled for defense, and wrinkled his nose slightly at the fact that he would be forced to defend both Seekers seems they were so close together that a strike at one could easily take out the other.
0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> That’s hardly a fitting attitude for a Lady 0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> 0 5

<font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font>

May 17, 2012 10:00 PM
We have a beautiful sunny day for the first Quidditch match of the game.

Seeker Thread
-Cepheus heads up into the air very quickly
-Gareth follows Cepheus up and wishes he wasn't moving so fast. He hits a rogue bludger that was bothering Cepheus at Solomon and feels kind of bad about it.
-Kate fakes a dive.
-Cepheus doesn't fall for it.
-Kate gives up the plan and just flies around
-Gareth hits another rogue bludger at Kate
-Kate avoids it and spots something that might be the snitch
-Cepheus chases after her and it but looses it
-Kate looses it as well and wanders away
-Gareth laments that Seekers are difficult to keep up with

The Quaffle Thread
-Sam gets the ball off the whistle
-Sam passed to Linus
-Solomon starts out his game with a bludger thumping against his back
-Linus attempts a pass, but Marcus intercepts
-Marcus shows off his catch to his captain but drops the ball
-Renee recovers it but decides to help Marcus out by bringing it closer for Kirstenna to see
-She passes it to Sam
-Sam passes it back to Renee
-Renee catches it but also takes a bludger to the leg after Derry shoots it at her. He doesn't feel bad about it.
-Renee takes a shot at goal
-Linus feels bad for his pass being the only one intercepted
-Kirstenna stops it and tosses it off to Solomon
-Topher hits a bludger
-Derry prevents it from hitting anyone and hits it at Sam
-Solomon passes the Quaffle to Arista
-Sam avoids the bludger and tries to intercept Arista's pass but only manages to slap it down
-Marcus gets it and takes a shot at goal
-Nic stops it
-Arista intercepts the Keeper's toss and makes another shot at goal
-Laurie hits a bludger at Sam
-Topher hits the bludger at Arista
-Arista dives away
-Topher tries to hit her again
-Nic stops the goal and passes it to Renee
-Renee attempts to go bother Kirstenna with it

0 <font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font> Recentering and Recap 0 <font color=silver>Coach Amelia Pierce</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font>

May 18, 2012 6:06 AM
Quidditch was often a fast-paced game. A testament to this was the fact that at this point in the game, three attempts had been made at goal and Linus had touched the Quaffle just once (and on that occasion he hadn’t been entirely expert with his handling of the same). It would be humiliating if Quidditch wasn’t, as was widely acknowledged, such a fast-paced game.

So Renée’s early goal attempt hadn’t made it. That was okay; it was still early in the game and there was much time to make up for it. So when the ball went back into play and was caught by a Teppenpaw Chaser, Linus wasted no time in Chasing after it – his role in this game was made pretty clear by its designated title. The journey down the pitch wasn’t easy; neither team managed any mention-worthy volley of passes, and the Beaters were on top form trying to make life as difficult as possible for the collection of players streaking down the pitch. All in all, Linus was disappointed but not entirely surprised when the Quaffle soon made its way into Nic’s domain. Thankfully, the Crotalus Keeper – who was a living example of that ancient proverb about practise and perfection – didn’t let his team down and saved not just one, but two potential goals. Linus couldn’t help the whoop that escaped his lips at the second save as the Quaffle came back into play under Crotalus possession, signalling and end to Teppenpaw’s brief taster of what it might feel like to be the best team on the pitch.

Now normality was restored, Linus was reluctant to let it go. Determined to do as instructed and bother Kirstenna with the Quaffle instead, Linus shot off up the pitch after his teammate, hoping that Teppenpaw’s players would remain too distracted by the Bludgers to cause much interference as the Crotalus players carried the ball back out of Nic’s territory. Renée was fast, and it was all Linus could do to keep up with her, on his school broom and with his comparatively small frame – he liked to think he was tall for his age, but he was still in his third year, and so had much growing to do yet – the wind resistance, even on a relatively calm day, made a better job of buffering him around than it did the older players. Nevertheless, he’d been training with the Crotalus team for long enough to know when to buckle down and just focus on the speed, so that’s what he did, lowering his body, tucking in his knees and making his vessel as streamlined as possible as he urged the broomstick on towards its limits, all the time keeping half an eye on his teammate to identify when she would make the pass.

The moment came, and Linus was ready for it. He anticipated his fellow Chaser’s move as she came closer, and he fought to maintain both his speed and his focus as the red leather ball came sailing, as expected, in his direction. He caught the ball heavily to his chest, the thud of its impact lessened in his experience by the pleasant exhilaration of a successful pass. The Quaffle was in his hands once again, and he would do his duty with it; raising his head he caught sight of Teppenpaw’s Keeper in the distance, a yellow beacon up ahead, and he intended to bother her. Perhaps not directly, as to carry the Quaffle that far up the pitch was simply inviting calamity, and Linus had already suffered sufficient calamity in his short Quidditch career to do desire any further shenanigans, but that would be his eventual aim. For the time being, carrying the ball across the half-way point (or as close to it as possible, as it was always very difficult to tell exactly where halfway was, when one was in the air, not to mention the assorted other distractions that could impede judgement on something so exact) would suffice as a victory. So without any attempts to slow his speed, Linus continued to barrel along full kilter away from his team’s goals and onwards up the pitch.

Once he’d flown as far as he dared – which, to his judgement, was at least some feet beyond that important halfway marker – Linus had already sought an opportunity to pass (and he felt this was definite progression from his previous game, during which he’d only begun to look for a window in which to make a successful pass when he’d already carried the ball as far as he was comfortable, which had the unfortunate side effect of inducing a mild last-minute panic). Reluctant for his pass to be intercepted a second time, Linus swerved closer to his closest teammate before a drew up a little straighter on his broomstick, brought his arm back with the Quaffle secured tightly in his fingertips, and made a neat thrust of a throw towards the red Chaser. Again, he’d done his best to canvas the area for any pesky opposition players who might have smart ideas about knocking his pass off course, but, as always, it was simply not possible to check all angles at the same time. A player could only do his best, and Linus was confident he had achieved that much. If his best wasn’t good enough then let Captain Bauer kick him off the team and have the trouble of replacing him next year.

That was an interesting thought; what if he was kicked off the team? Linus thought he could probably live with the shame just as easily as he’d managed to survive the whole school seeing his abysmal performance in the previous year’s game. Crotalus in particular might be kinder to a player who was unceremoniously retired, and could therefore do no further damage to the honor of the House, than to a player who consistently ruined their chances of glory. That wasn’t to say that Linus had actually experienced any open hostility from his Housemates, but he wouldn’t be surprised if he did experience a little adversity; he hated to disappoint people – and when he thought of people in general, they seemed to take a pictorial representation in his mind of Brianna’s face, for some inexplicable reason - and would forgive them if they decided to express similar viewpoints. On the other hand, he had so far enjoyed being a (somewhat) valued member of the Crotalus Quidditch team, and if pressed he would admit that he would rather be on the team than not. In fact he would very much like to be there when they inevitably were once again victorious in claiming the Quidditch Cup. Of course if he couldn’t make successful simple passes then he’d never be around for that momentous occasion… not as a Chaser, anyway.
0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> Reds for the win! 0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 18, 2012 11:46 AM
Cepheus was immensely disappointed in the fact that the snitch had disappeared. Not for good, of course, but it had disappeared at the moment nonetheless. He'd never realised just how difficult it was to be a Seeker. Who in their bloody right mind would chase after a tiny golden ball in order to win a bloody match?

Cepheus loathed the fact that he already knew the answer, but couldn't loath it enough to quit. There was something about searching for the blasted golden snitch that set his blood racing, his heart pounding. He loved the feeling of flying and there was no other way to enjoy it than in competition, so he felt. There was always recreational flying, but that wasn't the same.

Thoughts of his brothers and friends came to mind as he aimlessly gazed around the pitch for the snitch. He wondered if Rupert would join the Quidditch team when he got here. He'd probably try out for Chaser, though, as Cepheus looked at the red and yellow bodies flying around, throwing the quaffle around, he most likely wouldn't make it on his first year. It was inevitable. Cepheus believed Crotalus had a fair amount of wonderful players. No one could deny that. Ceph just didn't want to be the reason why they lost this match. He shivered slightly.

Cepheus didn't fear many things, but feared many things at the same time. He didn't like to admit it to himself as Father had said showing vulnerability was weakness, but it was difficult not to for a twelve-going-on-thirteen year old boy. He didn't like spiders, was somewhat afraid of falling off of his broom, was scared of humiliation, but his biggest fear of all was disappointing his family. Family was very important to his dad and he was glad his family wasn't the kind that decided to up and desert each other if necessary. The Princetons all tried to look out for each other unless, of course, one married a muggle-born. There had been awful violence concerning one of his ancestors, but that had passed some now. And that relative had been a psychopath.

Anyhow, disappointing his family would surely begin if he lost this Quidditch match. If he lost, if he didn't catch the snitch, then his father would be disappointed, and then Cepheus wouldn't do well in school and get on academic probation. He'd wander the halls at night, wishing for a better life, and get admonished for it. And then he'd stop going down to Cascade Hall to eat and wouldn't eat anything and would starve until he went home, but his family wouldn't want him back home because he'd flunk out of school and he'd be thirteen and have nowhere to go and no money to buy food and then he'd die all because of a bloody Quidditch match.

The image frightened Cepheus Princeton considerably no matter how far-fetched it was. He couldn't lose. He just couldn't. His blue eyes glanced over at Gareth briefly, making sure he was still there and hadn't abandoned him during Cepheus's brief drifting, but got his head back into the match, widening his eyes as if it would help him see better. Instead, his eyes accidentally glanced at a reflection of the sun and burned his retinas for a millisecond. "Ah!" he exclaimed quietly, blinking rapidly to get his vision back completely. That was difficult. Now he was seeing black spots and he wanted to scream. If he couldn't see properly, how in the world was he going to win this match and not end up dead at thirteen all alone?!
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> Breaking arms and backs aside... 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 18, 2012 2:14 PM
Nic saved again, and Sam breathed easier. The Quaffle passed to Renée, then was on its way back down the Pitch, back toward Teppenpaw territory. Things were operating according to the plan again, and he was a Crotalus, he liked plans. Even vague ones such as “keep the Quaffle moving toward Kirstenna more than it’s moving toward Nic.” It was appropriate for the situation at hand, anyway.

The Crotalus team, it had to be said, had seen better days, but when they had it together, they had it together, and it didn’t matter that he was too cautious, Renée’s sanity much, much too unreliable, or that Linus and Cepheus, at any rate, were too inexperienced. When they were working it right, they seemed to all forget about those things and just get the job done, which was what Sam liked to see, and which he thought, as Renée passed to Linus and the ball kept going their way, he was seeing today. Teppenpaw’s flirtation there, for a minute, with being a real contender had seemingly galvanized the Crotalus team into action, making them pull it together and get things going again. He did not think Teppenpaw was going to be allowed to gain so much momentum again, especially since Topher had seemed to be doing a good job of trying to break their lead Chaser’s head open, a move of which Sam heartily approved. It would have been great if her incessant yelling had tripped some of her own players up, distracted them at key moments, but that didn’t seem to be happening enough for him to want her kept around.

Linus’ run took them halfway down the Pitch and a bit more, and then he, too, was ready to pass. Sam nodded once in approval of his strategy as the ball moved from the younger boy’s hands to his own; that had been a neat pass, and had taken the same precaution Mouthy Girl had a few minutes earlier, with a fair degree of success, against interception, only Linus had done it with much more success. Yeah, the ball, to use a Muggle idiom, was definitely back in their court in more ways than one. They were on top of this again. He flew on, feeling confident that the next shot at a goal was going to end in ten points for Crotalus.

After covering more ground, Sam took his own attempt at a pass, checking all around for Teppenpaws first and again making a feint just in case one was slipping up, to make the person go the wrong way hopefully, before moving left, closer to another Chaser, and passing over-handed to his left, the opposite of the way he had passed last time. Next time, he would go left again, then right again, maybe, or maybe something else altogether; not having a pattern was, in some ways, a good thing, as long as his people were alert, and he thought they were today. They had this one.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> That's the tune I like to hear. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 18, 2012 2:43 PM
Right now – or so it seemed to Kate, anyway – they seemed to be in a stalemate, the Crotalus Beater-Seeker roommate team and her. She and Cepheus were both still a little disappointed, and Gareth wasn’t trying to hit her, either because he was afraid of hitting his boy at this point or because he just didn’t have a Bludger, which was, after all, always another option at any moment no one was trying to pummel her into a smooth paste. If another Beater had grabbed one after it flew away from him after his last hit, then he might be out of luck until that one or its twin was lost by one of the game Beaters. Truly, Seekers could benefit enormously from there only being two of the death balls flying around out here. She was pretty sure everyone would be retired from the position after a year due to excessive head trauma if not for that grace.

Unless, of course, two Seeker Beaters got hold of both, then proceeded to not care too much about hitting their own wards as they tried to hit the other, but really, Kate did not want to think about that possibility, even with the reduced-strength Beaters they had, for the most part, this year. A pair of second years could do some serious damage with that situation, and the thought of being the poor unfortunate soul caught between Edmond and Demelza, if that had been possible anymore, made her shudder. It could never be her, since she wasn’t an Aladren or a Pecari, but the thought was still bad.

Flexing her shoulders again, reminding herself that she did not feel a Bludger approaching every second for real and that there was other evidence besides paranoia when one was coming around usually, she looked again for the Snitch, crossing the fingers of her right hand against her broom.

That didn’t seem to be hugely effective, though, because the Snitch was remaining invisible again, and since her fingers didn’t feel completely comfortable in that position, she uncrossed them after a minute and just kept looking for the gleam of gold that would turn all their fortunes around and shake up the whole system at Sonora. Crotalus and Aladren had had a good run together, but Pecari had shown last year that they could be challenged; now it was high time Teppenpaw got their turn.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> Moving the Seeker thread up, too. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font>

May 19, 2012 11:14 AM
Derry had bothered the chasers for a little while, but as they ran off toward Nic Sawyer, he thought Teppenpaw might be doing well enough without him. Laurie had joined in, too, so they were defended. This, of course, meant that Kate wasn't.

He gave a quick look over to see how Kirstenna was doing, but their Captain was pretty much alone on her side of the pitch now. Topher was with the Chasers and Laurie, and Gareth was . . . with Cepheus. He definitely had to go look after Kate then.

Derry pulled his broom around and started heading over that way. He sped up a bit when he saw she had a bludger on her tail with no beaters nearby, but she managed to shake it on her own. He relaxed his speed again, but made a slight detour to go fetch that bludger before returning to the seeker game.

His cousin, Duesius, was one of the best Beaters Derry knew. Ben's sister (Ben his roommate, not Ben his nephew) was a big deal but if Duez had wanted to, Derry thought his cousin could probably show even her a thing or two. Duesius had only one other remarkable ability, and that was handling dangerous animals. Duesius once told him these were not terribly different skill sets, and Derry believed him.

So with all the respect, care, and caution as if he were guiding a feral hippogriff, Derry guided his bludger toward the two Crotali, the seeker and his guardian beater, trying to come up unnoticed behind them. Beaters were generally not known for the subtlety, so he thought maybe this might work, just for the surprise factor.

He attempted to approach at an angle that put him closer to Cepheus than Gareth, but he was unfortunately unable to make that work in such a way that he could get between them and Kate. They were both paying her a fair amount of attention and they would have certainly noticed him if he'd tried.

So when he got close enough that he didn't really think they could continue to not notice him much longer, he took a swing. The crack of his bat on the metal ball gave away his position as loudly as if he had shouted at them. He didn't wait to see if it hit Cepheus or if Gareth got in there in time. He just pushed the Derwent IV as fast as the custom broom could go, trying to get between the bludger and Kate, just in case there was a redirection.
0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> Coming to join you 0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font>

May 19, 2012 2:58 PM
The game was going by pretty fast, and Laurie was enjoying it. He remembered from his first year that the Crotalus team used to be fearsome led by a Captain that knew no bounds. Crotalus and Aladren always played against each other during the final and it was one hell of a game. The redhead had seen that one last game between two extremely excellent teams, but he now could see that Crotalus needed to work a lot to be that same giant as before. It was clear that they had a lot of talent in there, but they needed to work to get in shape. Not that Teppenpaw was in better shape. It pained Laurie to admit that the Aladren team was by far the best one at Sonora, but that was going to change. He would make sure of it.

The redhead saw that Derry was keeping tabs on their Seeker, so his job was to protect the chasers from the Crotalus beaters. Easy task and fun! Laurie was decided to help Teppenpaw win this game; this was his form of showing Preston that he wasn’t inferior to him or anyone. Just because he had Muggleborns as friends didn’t mean he was less of a Stratford. No, he was sure it made him better than his relatives. Being able to socialize with all kinds of people was what made him flexible and a more complete human being.

Laurie found a bludger flying close to him and he chased it. Sam Bauer was his next target, again. He finally caught up with the murderous ball and smacked his bat as hard as he could. He looked at the ball going to the Crotalus chaser and hoped it made impact. Sam was one of the most experienced Chasers playing and it would be better for his team if he wasn’t on the top of his game.
0 <font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font> I prefer another one 0 <font color="yellow">Laurie S., Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font>

May 19, 2012 7:21 PM
Someday, Paul thought, someone was going to think of all the reserves in the world and make Quidditch robes with pockets on them, so the reserves could bring a book or something to keep them occupied while the Quaffle moved back and forth so many times that the interest factor was no longer outweighed by the possibility of getting a crick in his neck if he kept watching them any longer and the rest of the team stubbornly refused to come down no matter how injured they were. In the meantime, though, he just watched the game.

He knew that a lot of his team had been expecting to dominate the game as though the Teppenpaw players weren’t even there, so it gave him a strictly forbidden sort of satisfaction to see that the yellow robes seemed to be putting up a pretty good fight after all as the game got going. He wanted his team to win, of course – his father claimed there were exceptions, times when being a loser at the moment was necessary or at least helpful for being a bigger winner later, but Paul had never seen a situation himself where it wasn’t better to be with the winners – but the arrogance of some of them irked him; one thing his father said that he did believe implicitly was that it was better to at least mentally treat everything that was in front of him as though it could be a real issue, and deal with it from the perspective that if he got sloppy, it could beat him.

Admittedly, if there was ever something to not think that way about, it was the Teppenpaw team, but…he had thought the same thing, too, last year when Pecari went up against Aladren, he would not have even taken a bet on that game if someone had offered it to him with odds which were ridiculously in his favor just because of how embarrassing it would be, and look at how that had ended. He wasn’t completely sure all of the Aladrens had processed that it had actually happened yet.

Anything could happen. Sure, Teppenpaws were not known for being among the great minds of the age, usually, but clearly they could learn, or they would have all been kicked out of school, and after Pecari last year, they wouldn’t be assuming from the beginning that they were going to suffer a humiliating defeat. That combination could give them what they needed to win, if Crotalus was too caught up in being rivals with Aladren and just having these pesky nobodies to brush out of the way before they could get there and finally – if they got their way – beat Aladren. The guys – and girl – in the air needed to be aware of that, and Paul wasn’t too sure that all of them were, though he’d never said as much to them. He was, after all, just the alternate.

He winced slightly as a Bludger headed toward Sam, hoping one of the Beaters got that. No good could come from the captain taking a hit at any point in the game, he thought, unless it was in a case of heroically jumping in front of the Seeker seconds before the catching of the Snitch, and he didn’t think that was, all things considered, very likely. For one thing, it would depend on very exact people placements, and for another, he had never seen it happen, after all, and he had been to a lot of Quidditch games, here and in other places, when they were all put together.
0 <font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font> Watching, hopefully not waiting 201 <font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font>

May 19, 2012 9:53 PM
Flying a bit higher, Gareth’s sharp eyes tracked the Chaser game in the moments when Cepheus slowed down long enough for him to take in the rest of the game. A glance at said Seeker showed that his roommate was looking rather worried. Flying lower, so they were side by side, Gareth offered the smaller Crotalus a reassuring smile. “Just breath, no one’s going to skin you if you don’t catch it, even the Captain couldn’t catch it last year. But look at Jade, and the Carey, both of them caught the Snitch their first go at being Seekers. Luck seems to favor the inexperienced in this school and it should favor you as well. Crotalus just needed some new blood, and now we will succeed!” Gareth said with more certainty than he actually felt.

As unlikely as the idea was, the Tepps were holding their own in the Chaser game even with an almost entirely new lineup and players who didn’t appear to be terribly experienced. Somehow they were able to maintain control of the Quaffle long enough to make two failed attempts on the goals. Now Crotalus finally regained the crimson orb and were making their way back down the Pitch to the Teppenpaw side of things. I should probably pay more attention to-

The thought was abruptly illustrated when the resounding CRACK of a bat from behind that was far too loud to be aimed at the Chasers brought the larger boy around with a curse. How by Merlin’s beard had he lost track of the dratted Tepp beaters?? The dark orb barreled towards Cepheus’s back at a speed that brought further curses to the Beater’s lips as he urged his broom forward, already knowing that he wasn’t going to be able to get his bat up in time to take the brunt of the hit, the angle was wrong and the speed needed just to put himself between the ball and his Seeker was too fast to try and get the bat up as well.

It didn’t even occur to Gareth not to do whatever it took to keep Cepheus from harm. Instead he cloaked back a snarl of pain as the iron ball smashed into his left shoulder with enough force to rattle his skeleton from top to toes. The hit was a solid one, but thankfully not one that forced his bones to yield under the force. Spinning with the blow, Gareth managed to bring the bat into play as the Bludger circled and attempted to strike him again. This time he was able to send it careening away, though he hadn’t been able to aim it at anything. Panting he glared around the Pitch until he spotted the Yellow Beater now firmly between him and the rival Seeker. Gareth rolled his shoulder, and hissed slightly at the burning pain that told of a deep tissue bruise, possibly even a bone bruise. That was going to look rather spectacular on his pale skin come morning.
0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> I was hoping you would forget your Seeker 0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 20, 2012 12:08 AM
Somehow, there was always another Bludger. Topher’s inner font of sarcasm wondered if there was some kind of altered law of physics on Quidditch Pitches which made Bludgers just appear all over the place, but in such a way that it was possible for the players’ minds to trick them into thinking there were only two, sort of like there were charms that could trick Muggles into thinking certain buildings were just old ruins, or that no one ever stepped through the front windows of them. Dismissing the past few moments as past and therefore not relevant in the slightest, he went as fast as he could after Stratford, who looked like he was threatening…. 

…Sam. Oh, that would not be good. Their captain taking a Bludger wouldn’t slow them down too much, Topher knew that, not when he was only a Chaser, but it was just one of those things that Beaters were supposed to avoid. A written rule was ‘take out the Seeker,’ but an unwritten one was ‘protect the captain, regardless of position;’ for one thing, this could keep the captain from seeking retaliation by throwing him off the team in favor of Paul, and for another, it was just good sense. Sam was their leader; it wouldn’t look good to have their leader falling off his broom.

Topher turned very fast as he came near the Bludger, and thought he felt something in his back protest loudly as he swung his bat and directed the Bludger away from the Crotalus captain and toward a yellow robe he thought was not bat-bearing. It didn’t move quite as straight as he might have liked, which reinforced his fear that, beneath the adrenaline rush of hurrying over to make the save, he’d strained something at least a little, but he was confident it was going much more toward Yellow than Red. That was all, with his heart pounding and the game moving fast, that he really needed to be sure of at the moment, he thought, since he was still on his broom.

Refusing, for now, to rub his back because that would be showing weakness in front of the enemy, he began looking around again, seeking the next source of danger to the players under his protection or opportunity to do some damage to the yellow robes, whichever came to him first as he flew around the Chasers.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> Tough luck for you, then 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 20, 2012 8:54 PM
The pressure was beginning to mount on Cepheus's young shoulders as he tried to blink the black spots out, but the Princeton heir had always worked well under pressure, surprisingly. He was good at following orders, but was not clear-headed during horribly tense situations, like this one. It was a trait his other brothers lacked and Cepheus was jealous of it. When he was nervous, it was fine. But when he felt slightly panicked, things would begin to go pear-shaped and that was never where he wanted to go especially now.

Gareth flew down to his side, encouraging him, and it worked. Cepheus took a few breaths, trying to calm the panic that was beginning to knot his chest. "Yeah, you're right." One side of his mouth went up in a half-grin. "Thanks, mate." Knowing that he was supported at least by his roommate, Cepheus felt a new surge of hope that he would catch the snitch. He didn't think or worry about his hopes being dashed just yet. That would come after the match. For now, he would go find the snitch. The dark spots were even fading.

And then the reverberating sound of a Beater's bat to bludger was heard and Cepheus tensed immediately and ducked his head. He didn't care if he looked silly, but he didn't know where it was coming from and it could hit him at any moment. His spine was clearly exposed and one bludger would most likely permanently damage his small frame if it hit him too hard and his spine directly. Oh, Merlin, Cepheus cried in his mind, squeezing his eyes shut and bracing himself for an impact.

It never came.

He opened his eyes and saw that Gareth was no longer by his side. Instead, he turned and saw his roommate bat the bludger away as it tried to attack him. His eyes widened as he watched him roll his shoulder, piecing together what had happened in his head. He flew over to him, imitating their previous encounter just a few minutes ago. "All right?" he asked, hands tight around the broomstick. Then he saw gold and his eyes widened again. "Ah, be back." Brilliant words to say, of course. Cepheus, the Master of Words he should be titled.

He sped off in the direction of gold. The black dots in his vision had cleared for the most part now. He narrowed his eyes to keep them from watering at the height of his speed and focused on winning. Gareth wouldn't have saved him from a bludger for nothing, and he didn't want to see Crotalus lose poorly. He hoped to Merlin that the Chasers were doing well. He'd been a bit preoccupied with his own duty to watch theirs.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> This can only call for a fight to the death. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font>

May 20, 2012 10:28 PM
The pain dulled to a sullen throb and Gareth set the uncomfortable feeling to the back of his mind to live along side his fear of heights. It was just one more thing that had to be acknowledged and then put in its place so that it couldn’t affect his performance. “All right?” Cepheus asked before something caught his eye and with a quick “Ah, be back” The Crotalus Seeker was off again before Gareth could assure him that he was fine. His lips corked into a smile as his liquid blue gaze snapped towards the Beater who now flew comfortably between him and the rival Seeker.

The smile turned sharp edged as he flew a bit higher and began corralling the bludger he’d hit earlier. Because his strike hadn’t had the full force of his strength behind it, the dangerous ball hadn’t gotten too far away. Just far enough not to be triggered again into attacking him or Cepheus by their proximity. The rival Beater’s position had become a hindrance, because not only was he between Gareth and the Tepp Seeker, he was now between the two Seekers as Cepheus made his play on the Snitch. If she wanted even a chance of catching up with Cepheus now, she’d have to pass his position to close the distance, and even with her own guardian, the risk was one worth taking.

Gareth was relying on the hope that Kate wouldn’t wait for Derry, that the glimmer of gold, positioned closer to Cepheus than herself, would be enough to blind her from the danger Gareth represented. So, much like a great hawk he hung in the sky, waiting for the dove to fly below and give him the perfect moment to strike her down.
0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> Undoubtedly 0 <font color="red">Gareth Whitebriar-Beater </font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font>

May 21, 2012 12:07 AM
Aubrielle had been searching the stands to see where Amira and Clara were. They’d both said they were coming to the game to cheer her on, Andri too. She couldn’t see Andri, but it didn’t take long to spot her older sister Amira’s bright red hair in the crowd. Clara waved to her and called out excitedly to her to kick their butts. B couldn’t help but giggle at her cousin making a spectacle of herself (again). But then the game really started and she had to turn her attention to what was happening above her.

The first year was watching the game, eyes widening, then closing them, then opening them wider than before, before closing them again tighter even than she had done yet. The first year was still humming softly from the same song from ‘Sound Of Music’ in the hopes that it would at the very least soothe her. It was almost working until…

She heard the thwack sound of a Bludger hitting a bat and her head snapped to see where it was coming from. "RIS!" she called, terrified for her sister (and honestly, herself as well). If Ris gets hurt I have to play, but I won’t want to play, I’d want to make sure she’s alright… Thoughts ran around the hamster wheel of her mind as she watched her sister dodge the black bludger.

“Thank god…” she said, trying to knock her beating heart down a few thousand decibels. It still beat loudly in her chest when Topher sent another black Bludger at her sister again. She turned chalk white when that one hit her sister’s wrist or hand.

“RIS!” she called as she saw Arista drop a few feet in the air, but then go determinedly on after the Quaffle again anyway. Brielle could see the pain in her sister’s eyes from the bench and right then knew that the black ball must have hit her right wrist or thumb area where her tendonitis was. And though it had been getting much better as of late, that probably knocked her back a few paces again.

Sure, B knew that she needed to watch the game itself, but she found herself watching Arista, and also turning to Amira and Clara in the stands with worry threading her brow. She knew what Addi would say when she found out, and even Brielle was glad Addi had decided not to come to the game. She’d have had a heart attack at what B and the others had just seen happen!

Brielle’s heart plummeted again when Topher hit the bludger back towards a yellow clad player which was most likely her sister (AGAIN) and she hid her face in her robes. I can’t watch this anymore! she thought to herself as she wished that the game was over and Kate would just catch the Snitch already!
0 <font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font> I can't watch... 0 <font color=yellow>Brielle Thornton,Reserve</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font>

May 21, 2012 1:10 AM
Arista wanted nothing more than to win this game for Teppenpaw, for Kirstenna, for HER too even. She’d tried to take a shot on the hoops, but by the sounds of it her attempt didn’t go in. She’d dodged Topher’s first Bludger shot and flew a bit around to lose it. She saw some of the rest of the game around her and wondered whether the Snitch would be caught soon. Part of her hoped it would and that it would be Kate that got it.

Kate was a good seeker, the problem was the Snitch didn’t always want to be found! The all too familiar sound caught her ear once again, but by the time she realized what was going on around her she couldn’t move all the way. The black Bludger didn’t catch her in the chest or ribs like it could have, instead it only nicked her right hand. She dropped a few feet in the air before she regained control of the broom once more and flew back upwards.

Some people wouldn’t have had any reaction to the Bludger hit like that, lightly or hard, by the ball. But Arista had problems with her wrist to begin with. The throbbing pain which started in her tendonitis-ed wrist from the hit got sharp, then dulled, but got sharp again. It wasn’t going to stop her from playing though. Ris knew that it wasn’t broken as she could move her arm and wrist, but it was all in the tendon.

Arista heard Brielle shout her name and she glanced towards her chalk white sister and shouted back, “I’m FINE!” she flew on, even though she felt like crying. I WILL NOT cry. This does not hurt… she repeated to herself over and over again, especially since she’d already shouted that she was fine to her younger sister. I WILL NOT make myself into a liar. This does not hurt. she said to herself again as she flew on.

Just as suddenly as she’d gotten hit by the last Bludger, she heard another one and dodged it altogether by dropping a few feet and then circling around it straying a little bit higher in the air. She watched the game as she flew above it to see if she could spot the Quaffle again and go after it.

She spotted the red ball in Sam’s hands and pushed her broom as fast as it would go so she’d beat him and intercept his pass. The broom flew fast and quietly as she’d practiced hundreds of times with her sisters and flew up out of nowhere again to retrieve the ball instead of his fellow red robed Chasers and she flew right back towards Nic’s side of the Pitch. Veering in any direction she could to avoid red-robed anyones, she held tightly to the ball and kept her eyes out for her fellow yellow clad Chasers to pass to.

Finally spotting an opening with one of the boys, she flew close to them and practically handed the Quaffle to them to avoid an interception to the best of her ability and flew nearby them so that they could pass too. Her hand hurt, but she wouldn’t forgo a pass for it.


Arista Rose Thornton was a winner and always had been, nobody would stop it, not even Crotalus House!
0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> We'll see about that! 0 <font color=yellow>Arista Thornton, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Kirstenna, Keeper</font>

May 21, 2012 1:17 AM
Kirstenna continued to watch the game as the direction of the Quaffle changed. She was especially pleased about how when she threw the ball to Solomon it actually went to Solomon and not like, out in the stands or something. That it neither went too far or not far enough. It meant that Kirstenna's throwing abilities were getting better.

As apparently were Nic Sawyer's keeping skills. The Teppenpaw groaned as he caught Marcus's attempt at scoring. She'd been pleased that Arista had caught the pass from Solomon and that the first year had gotten it again after Sam failed to do more than slap the Quaffle away. Kirstenna might have liked Sam, maybe even a lot, but she also really wanted to win and not be laughed at or have her nose rubbed in it if Teppenpaw lost again.

She was tired of stuff like that. Tired of being treated badly by her father's family, tired of losing games and friends and especially tired of being pushed around by the psychotic Imposter. Oh, Kirstenna knew about her nemesis hexing a first year student during flying lessons-and she could only hope it was the start to the maniac's downfall, openly casting a spell on a student on a pitch full of witnesses.

The Teppenpaw briefly took her eyes off the Quaffle to glare at the woman. Really, she was getting far too cocky, openly doing something like that but it was all for the best. The Imposter needed to be stopped at all costs and it was probably a good thing that Kirstenna wasn't a beater. Not only would she not be very good at it, but she'd be way too tempted to take the Imposter out with a well placed Bludger.

That would probably backfire on her though. She could lose her captainship or even be expelled. The latter was unthinkable. Sure, it would be stopping the most evil person Kirstenna had ever encountered, but the Imposter was sneaky. And dangerous. The sixth year didn't really want to take her on head to head. She was still convinced that was what had happened to Brian and look what happened to him. She briefly wondered about her friend even now from time to time. Was he even still alive in that hotel room in Gallup, New Mexico?

She turned back to the game. Arista had intercepted and tried to score again, which was good, but Nic had caught it again and that was not. Renee caught it this time and the direction of the game changed and Kirstenna braced herself as it came back towards her, changing hands between the Crotali Chasers a few times.
11 <font color=yellow>Kirstenna, Keeper</font> Hopefully our luck will change. 161 <font color=yellow>Kirstenna, Keeper</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 21, 2012 1:24 PM
To say that Kate was relieved to see Derry appearing to look after her was akin to saying that New York was this town where some stuff happened every now and then. She had been doing all right so far, but she had not counted on that to continue if she didn’t get someone in here to cover her, which she now had. Derry was definitely better than Gareth, she was sure of that even before the enemy Beater took a Bludger to the shoulder hard enough to make him spin and her wince, and so she felt that now she could look for the Snitch with greater security and less personal attention to the Bludgers.

Not, of course, that she thought she’d ever just completely stop keeping an eye and an ear open for the Bludgers – getting hit hurt too much to put the responsibility for not getting hit entirely into someone else’s hands, however trustworthy she thought those hands were, if she could help it – but she could think about it less now that Derry was here. Him injuring the Beater who’d been after her all game wasn’t quite enough to make her want to kiss him, but it came close. If Gareth couldn’t hit straight, then only being a complete idiot could result in her getting injured now unless he and Topher switched places, she thought, and Topher seemed pretty busy trying to bash Arista’s brains in.

It was un-Teppenpaw-like of her, but Kate thought she might almost pass for a Layne as she thought, for just one second, better you than me, sister before turning her eyes back to her part of the game, seeking the sparkle that was the making or breaking of the team’s shot at the Championship in years.

Catching something moving fast in her peripheral vision, she looked and saw Cepheus moving with intent toward…something…Kate gasped, thrilled into some paradoxical place just between shock and resignation, when she saw it was gold. She probably didn’t have a chance…but she had to try. Turning as quickly as she could, she called “Derry!” to let him know she was going to move, maybe, and headed off after Cepheus, hoping for a flash of – she didn’t even know – good luck, or a freak twist of chance, or anything, really, that would make the Snitch end up in her hand instead of in the Crotalus Seeker’s.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> Let's get it going, then. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color=red>Gareth, Beater</font>

May 21, 2012 1:58 PM
Events unfolded almost ideally and Garth gave a sharp toothed grin, the competitive streak that only showed after a game was well under way finally surfaced as he watched the Yellow Seeker catch sight of Cepheus just as he wanted her to. The hit he took earlier was a lucky one, striking his left shoulder and not his right, so although it was distractingly painful, it wouldn’t have a significant impact on his aim.

The only hair in the potion was that she’d given her own guardian a heads up that she was about to make her run. Timing would be key as the female Seeker streaked after Cepheus in a vain attempt to out run him and catch the Snitch. Flying a bit to the right Gareth gave the Bludger a sharp tap to move it along, but not enough for it to get loose of him, years of playing in the family games followed by last term’s experience left Gareth will a fairly acute sense of how to move to get the best hit on a Bludger and not let it turn on him at an inopportune moment.

It was amazing really that muggleborns made it on to the teams as first and second years. Not that he had anything against it, he just couldn’t fathom how they were able to compete with students who’d been flying, and most who’d played either on youth teams or family games sense they could adequately ride a broom higher than five feet. Learning how to fly with out prior experience, learning a whole new game that had no comparison in the muggle world that he knew of, and finally competing against students who knew both from an early age was impressive to the Pureblooded boy.

Another tap nudged the fickle ball to the right just as she passed below. Sitting up Gareth gripped the bat in both hands and ignored the sharp twinge of pain that accompanied the move in his shoulders. He’d have to hit hard to get the Bludger to outrun her protector and with sharp precision Gareth slammed the bat into the metal ball with bone jarring force. Like a midnight missile, it shot down from the sky, its trajectory lining up neatly poised to strike the yellow Seeker.

Gritting his teeth against the pain the force of the hit caused in his wounded shoulder, Gareth shifted his weight and urged his broom forward to catch up with Cepheus. It wouldn’t do to allow Derry to regain control of the Bludger only to turn his shot against his own Seeker, so he had to get ahead of the drama that was unfolding instead of sitting back to watch the move play out.
0 <font color=red>Gareth, Beater</font> Yes, lets 0 <font color=red>Gareth, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font>

May 21, 2012 10:08 PM
Derry got in front of Kate and only then did he look back to see what had happened with his bludger. They had been pretty close together, so it had been a risk, but he'd been behind them and not expected. It could have worked. Looking now, Derry saw that Cepheus had been spared but Gareth seemed injured. Whoa. Cool. It wasn't often that he got to actually hit another beater.

He thought it might have been better overall to get Cepheus as he'd originally intended, but he'd totally take the consolation prize.

Then Cepheus spotted something and ran after it, and Kate ran after him with a word of warning, and Derry headed after her, knowing there was a bludger in Gareth's vicinity. A look over in the other beater's direction verified his worst thought, that Gareth had not only gotten control of the bludger but was hitting it at Kate.

Derry pushed his broom to its limit. The Derwent IV was a couple years old now, but it had been top of the line when it was new and he'd kept it in near-perfect condition. He put it on an intercept course and managed to get in between the bludger and Kate with only moments to spare. He swung his bat, not having time to aim even if Kate hadn't been moving in the same direction Cepheus was. The bludger went careening off to Derry's left, safely away from Kate and (more by happy chance than intent since there had been no time to look first, just to swing) all other Teppenpaws as well.

Under other circumstances, he may have run after it so it stayed in Teppenpaw control. Good offense, good defense, and all of that, but Topher had seen him come over and seen Gareth get hit, there could be reinforcements coming and Derry would not leave Kate unguarded while she was busy trying to catch the snitch.

With the immediate threat passed, Derry turned his broom to follow after his Seeker. He could never Seek himself - his eyesight was bad enough that he had enough trouble spotting bludgers that were more than a couple dozen yards away - but he would do his darndest to keep up with Teppenpaws' Seeker, to keep her safe, and maybe to worry and distract Cepheus as well.
0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> I'm confused, Gareth wants Cepheus to die? 0 <font color=yellow>Derry Four, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font>

May 22, 2012 10:50 AM
Linus felt like cheering as his pass went neatly to plan; Sam caught it and continued to carry the Quaffle up the pitch. They were finally functioning well as a team – for some reason it had taken them longer to master this game than usual, but Linus was secretly getting an increasing suspicion that Teppenpaw didn’t stand a chance. This feeling swelled yet further as he witnessed a Tepp Beater aim a Bludger ay Sam, only to be thwarted soon thereafter by Topher. Yes, everything was going their way.

Instantly, he reminded himself not to have such damning thoughts mid-game, for just as he’d convinced himself that all was well, Linus watched in horror as the girl Tepp Chaser stole the ball mid-pass. Infidel! That most certainly was not part of the plan, and the third year couldn’t help but feel like his optimistic thought process has sorely tempted fate to defy him, and so he felt some inexplicable responsibility for the breakdown in Crotalus’ Chasing volley. This self-blame was undoubtedly the reason he rapidly curtailed his goalpost-wards journey, spinning his broomstick round to follow after Arista and prevent her from causing any further damage. The very small part of his brain currently engaged in rational thought spared a moment to hope she didn’t try to carry the Quaffle too far; that would make it all the more difficult for him to redeem Crotalus’ loss.

Luckily, she didn’t seem to want to make an inspired dash the full length of the pitch, and it wasn’t too long before she seemed about to pass. The only trouble was that she was hedging her bets against interception by drawing far too close for comfort to her fellow Chaser. Normally this would have put any sane person off trying to steal the ball. Maybe it was his sense of responsibility; maybe it was Renée starting to rub off on him, or maybe it was some other peculiar reason to do with honor and team spirit. Whatever the reason, Linus didn’t feel the inclination to draw away. He was getting ever closer; from a distance it would no doubt look like he was on a collision course, although the last thing he wanted right now was to commit a foul and offer a free throw to the opposition.

He knew he should back off – wanted to, even – but Arista was about to make the pass. She lifted the Quaffle, it left her hand, and without any conscious decision, Linus urged his broom forward, coming breathtakingly close to sandwiching himself between two Teppenpaw Chasers. The very tip of the handle of his broom nudged the Quaffle just slightly, but at a coincidentally perfect angle, bouncing the ball backwards, sending it flying mere millimetres past Linus’ cheekbone. On reflex, he jerked his broom to halt its progress, and flung out his right arm, nearly unseating himself in the process, but successfully palming the Quaffle. Then, after what felt like an eternity but was really only one second of fumbling, he managed to gain a firm grip of the leather ball. Barely believing his luck in what had to be the most spectacular fluke of his life so far, Linus dropped his broom a couple of feet as he set about turning back to face the proper direction once more.

He dimly registered that his heart was thumping faster than usual, no doubt due to the adrenaline coursing through him following his uncharacteristic desperate fight for the Quaffle. He didn’t mind; his body could probably use the extra kick to help him accomplish his task of passing the ball on to another Crotalus player (and, ultimately, to go bother Kirstenna with it). So having made back up the ground they’d lost to Arista, Linus, still giddy from the excitement of moments ago, lined himself up to pass to one of his teammates.

At the most opportune moment to his humble reckoning, the third year Chaser drew his right arm back, cradling the Quaffle in his well-practised fingertips, and made what looked as though it might be yet another clean, neat pass. He might not be skilled at fancy or elaborate feints and throws, but nobody could deny he had a good throwing arm, and if that was the most that could be said for him as a Chaser, then so be it. Of course, after his last reclaim of the ball, anyone spectating might have been fooled into believing that was down to some previously hidden talent, and that couldn’t hurt his image. Even Sam, with whom Linus would be more honest, couldn’t deny that he’d been successful in recapturing the Quaffle and, fluke or not, that had to work in Linus’ favour.

Maybe he wouldn’t get kicked off the team after all. He had already begun to idly look at broomsticks in the assorted Quidditch magazines that lay around the common room, fantasizing about which of them he would own if he survived another year on the Crotalus team’s starting line up. He was sure his family had sufficient funds to afford him a relatively decent broom without causing too much damage to his prospects of going to college (Did wizards go to college? Linus assumed they must, as they engaged in regulated professions such as teaching and Healing, but he’d yet to research the topic to know for sure. He’d remember to add it to his to-do list after the game). The school brooms had served him well up until now but, Linus considered as he looked to see whether his pass had successfully made it into the hands of one of his teammates, it would be pleasant to have one that was all his own.
0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> Hmm, nice try 0 <font color="red">Linus Macaulay, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 22, 2012 12:32 PM
Things were flying past Cepheus's peripheral as he sped towards the prize. He couldn't remember another time feeling this close to the snitch. He could reach out and probably stroke the hard gold. His fingers gripped his broom tightly as he focused, but then he saw Bauer coming up next to him in his peripheral.

Squeezing his broomstick tighter, he made a sharp turn, following the gold, keeping his eyes focused on that and not on her. His arms were beginning to shake and Cepheus started to reach out slowly, then retracted his hand. He was getting unsteady from moving so fast. He'd probably raced around the pitch twice already.

The snitch was moving quite erratically. It zoomed around here and there and Cepheus felt that he would get motion sickness quite soon. Suddenly, the snitch paused and Cepheus reached out a hand to snatch it, but it flew to the side and his hand clutched air. Then the snitch zipped past his ear. The cool metal felt strange against his skin, and he shouted involuntarily. Then it was gone.

Cepheus was so angry he could have thrown a fit. "No, no, NO!" he yelled. He didn't care that everyone could hear him and that he was in the public eye. He was so close! So bloody close and it was all to no avail. He felt ready to swear, but instead he turned his broom and flew after that snitch. He was blind to it now, eyes searching the skies desperately, flying aimlessly towards no one and nothing. He was so angry he felt like he'd go mad. He was going to lose his concentration the angrier he got, so he tried to soothe himself. He took several deep breaths as his broom slowed down, but his eyes were searching the pitch tirelessly.

He hadn't heard anyone make a goal yet, and he was getting irritated. This match seemed like it was at a standstill at the moment. There wasn't much going on for the crowds to cheer about. Except for the bludgers going around. Thank Merlin for some entertainment. He glanced at the Crotalus chasers for a moment before turning his attention back to his work. He was desperate enough now to follow his rival Seeker, and he looked at her, watching her moves while keeping another eye out for the snitch.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> I'm also confused. Kate doesn't mind dying? 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 22, 2012 5:16 PM
Sam had seen the Bludger coming, and been tensed to try to avoid or take it, when then, Topher had appeared and sent it back toward the Teppenpaws. That it hadn’t hit anyone was not, he thought, terribly important compared to the demonstration of how on the ball the Crotalus players were. Some of them – maybe even all of them; he didn’t think he had been, too much, but if he knew everything about his subconscious, it would just be his conscious, which would kind of defeat the whole point – had, he figured, been a little arrogant when they came out of the gate, not taking Teppenpaw seriously enough to put together a good game, but now they were back on form and the game was theirs….

…At least until he passed, and that Thornton chick got in the way again. Sam made a face in frustration, pushing away momentary fantasies of just crashing into her, since his Beaters were apparently finding her difficult to flatten. That would just earn Teppenpaw a free shot, and he wasn’t going to do that, no matter how much Nic had improved. It was the principle of the thing, after all.

He flew after her, too, looking for a chance to intercept, and saw Linus doing the same thing. When he saw how she was playing it, though, he expected the younger guy to come to the same conclusion about how likely they were to get it this time that he himself was coming to: that it was time to withdraw, let Topher hopefully handle it and catch the ball as it fell if all went as he’d like and get it in the next interception if it didn’t. They were, after all, neither of them exactly on the best brooms available, and a crash would probably hurt them as much as it did the other guys unless it was just between them and one of the little ones, with that still not being exactly a desirable situation.

Instead, Linus spontaneously decided he was an Aladren and made one of the craziest-looking interceptions Sam had ever seen in the game, a move that, seemingly miraculously, ended with Linus holding the ball and Sam laughing out loud at what he imagined the expressions on the Teppenpaw players’ faces were, feeling a little feverish himself with the triumph of it all. Maybe the Crotalus Chasers weren’t the terrifying force they had once been, but they did still have their moments, damn right they did.

He worked to concentrate again, but still had a vaguely smile-like expression as his mind continued to giggle when Linus made the pass – nice and simple, but strong; that could work as well as anything else – and Sam snatched the ball out of the air and they continued their progress toward Kirstenna. Two more moves, maybe three, and he thought they’d have it; he flew further and faster than he might have normally, noting that they only had one Beater to deal with down here now, before closing as much of the distance between another Crotalus and himself as he felt safe doing and using both hands to toss the ball in an arc, making it harder to intercept from below. They had this one; he could feel it in his bones that they had this one. With a pair of crazies playing with him and maybe rubbing off on him before it was over, how, exactly, were they supposed to lose?

Except, maybe, for those Seekers, which at the moment, having swung so quickly from frustrated to delighted, Sam wasn't thinking much of. Other things were on his mind just now.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> Inadequate, though. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp

May 22, 2012 11:35 PM
Arista had done it again. She’d intercepted Crotalus’s pass of the Quaffle and then once more, passed it herself. The fifth year sent it a few feet towards one of her fellow yellow-robed Chasers, but not even a mili-second later Linus was between her and whichever of her fellow Teppenpaw Chasers was there, AND he had the red Quaffle!

She was so mad she could have spit (if she didn’t already know that it wasn’t exactly lady-like to spit, anyway)! “You’ve gotta be kidding me?!” She mumbled as she inwardly roared in anger. Linus sandwiched himself in between herself and whichever yellow robed Chaser she’d been trying to pass to and the tip of his broom handle nudged the Quaffle. The ball bounced backwards and right towards him! What the-! she thought to herself as he flung out his arm and brought the Quaffle right into his hand with what looked like a firm grip. Linus dropped a few feet on his broom and turned around to go back towards Kirstenna again. That’s what you think… she thought as she dropped a few feet too and rocketed after him. Arista trailed him until about the point where she’d gotten the Quaffle back herself and saw that Linus was lining up to pass again!

The red-robed boy drew his arm back and Arista watched with anticipation of her chance to get the ball back in her court. Linus passed and Sam snatched the Quaffle right out of the air before she got to it. Damnit! she thought as Sam flew fast away from her, but his speed wasn’t going to be something that stopped her! The Crotalus Captain threw the Quaffle in an arc above most of their heads. Sure, Arista had been a few feet below Crotalus’ Chaser, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t override the tendency to have trouble intercepting the red ball.

Arista swept upwards through the crowd of players and swiped the Quaffle right out of its arc and pulled it tightly into her chest so she wouldn’t and couldn’t lose it.

GOT IT! she said triumphantly to herself and leaned into her broom speeding upwards into the air and turning back around to be headed in Nic’s direction at the Crotalus hoops.

She didn’t want to make the mistake of trying to pass and then losing it, but she also didn’t want to be as if she thought she had to roll the whole game on her own either. Her mind flew fast, almost as fast as her broom did to cross over the center line.
0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp I trust that this is adequate? 0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp 0 5

Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp

May 22, 2012 11:44 PM
Arista crossed the center line and forced her broom forward, faster and faster so that everything around her was blurry to her eyes. I can do this. I can help get a win for Teppenpaw, FINALLY the whole of Sonora will know what we Teppenpaws can do! she thought to herself as she pushed herself faster and faster, closer and closer to the goal in front of her. It was like a carrot dangling on a wire in front of a horse who was training to ride with a rider on top of them.

The win was Arista’s carrot and she would get it. Her life and happiness depended on it!

She didn’t care personally if the win was all because of her or just part, she just wanted more than anything to be a part of a winning team finally! In the five years she’d been on the team they hadn’t won once and she was determined to change that luck. Today it would change!


Nobody could change that, not nobody, not no-how. she thought, just as the Wizard of Oz had said in the movie titled the same name. Arista shook her head at the realization of what she had just thought of. Who am I? Brielle? she thought to herself as she chuckled. She felt like she’d channeled her younger sister and wasn’t too sure how to go about taking that information. She normally didn’t come up with things like that, that was more B’s line of fun than hers.

Oh well. With a shrug, the 16 year old red-headed Oregonian flew passed a few blurs of red and yellow, but didn’t stop through the couple of football lengths of the Pitch. She knew it was crazy, but she didn’t want to take the chance that someone would intercept her chances again. Especially since it looked like Linus and Sam were already reading her ways of playing. It wasn’t that Arista didn’t trust Marcus or Solomon, because she did. It was more along the lines of the fact that she didn’t want an interception by Crotalus before Teppenpaw had another chance to get points!

She wove her way this way and that and managed to finally (in a roundabout way) make it to Nic and Crotalus’ hoops. She feigned a shot in the center hoop, then the one on her left before actually shooting the red ball fast and hard at the hoop on her right!

She didn’t hang around to watch if her shot went in, but she circled behind and down before steeling herself for a catch of the ball as it hopefully fell through the hoop.
0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp AND this is better, still! 0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp 0 5

Aubrielle Thornton, Teppenpaw, Reserve

May 23, 2012 12:04 AM
Aubrielle heard a lot of noise while she covered her eyes and briefly had a ping pong ball match in her head. Do I watch? Do I not? If I watch, then I may see someone like Ris get hurt… But if I don’t watch, I’ll miss what’s going on and I won’t know what to do if I DO have to go in and play… the first year thought as the gears in her mind hit one another with both a screech and a moan.

She opened her eyes and spotted where Arista was. She was flying right behind Sam and when Sam started to send the red ball into the arc, Arista snapped it up and flew faster and faster down the Pitch.

“YES! ATTA GIRL RIS!” she called after her sister’s long run across the Pitch. Arista and Amira had told her all about how the year before Arista had pulled a move like that and had been talked to about it, she only hoped that this year with this move her oldest sister wouldn’t get in trouble or anything!

B knew that Arista wanted nothing more than to help Teppenpaw to win FINALLY after years of not winning a single game. Aubrielle Thornton also knew what her sister was like when she wanted something.

Brielle knew better than to get in her sister’s way when she was like that!

Then Arista flew faster and faster towards the Crotalus end of the Pitch and faked a shot at the center hoop, then the left one and lastly actually shot the ball right at the right hoop. Come on Quaffle… Go in… Go into the hoop! she thought as she watched with bated breath to see if her sister had made a goal!
0 Aubrielle Thornton, Teppenpaw, Reserve But I have to... NUTS... 0 Aubrielle Thornton, Teppenpaw, Reserve 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 23, 2012 2:23 AM
Ha, Topher had thought, if not with complete satisfaction, when the Bludger had made some contact with his irritant of the moment. He had been aiming for her entire arm, but would take messing her hand up as a start. He could break it the next time she got in the way, then hit a joint in the other arm on the next hit if she still didn't get the hint, and then Teppenpaw would either suck more than it already did or they would pull her and replace her with whichever of her somewhat interchangeable, to his not-really-into-clannish-redheads mind, sisters was playing reserve, in which case...Teppenpaw would still suck more than it already did. It was a win-win for him, really.

And it would, if the game went on long enough, happen, or something like it; he was being facetious about the details, and would truly be shocked and honestly a little weirded out if it did play out exactly that way, but it was an article of faith with him that sooner or later, the luck of every single player on the field ran out, and ran out in more interestingly violent ways for those who didn't have bats. Look at Arnold Carey; man had been unstoppable, regardless of injuries, for three years, only to be beaten by a firstie Topher was pretty sure had been on a school broom while he wasn't even really beat up enough to make the girls all upset. Luck was fickle; luck smiled at a guy, or girl, one minute, then turned bad and kept smiling while the same person got struck by lightning the next. She'd been lucky so far today, but sooner or later, if she kept playing, she was gonna get her head knocked off by somebody. It was just a matter of time.

She dodged his next Bludger, but the ball quickly moved back into Crotalus possession thanks to some truly crazy stunt work by Linus, then went from Limus to Sam, and then - 

Ah, curses. She had it again. If the Seeker game had not, at a quick glance, looked pretty intense, Topher would have considered signaling Gareth to come over so they could gang up on her, deal with the problem more directly than philosophy could, but the other Beater looked pretty busy, especially since Derry had appaently decided someone needed to look after his girl and try to take out Crotalus' boy.

Instead, then, Topher took a long shot at her, made a face as the Bludger went just enough off-course to miss her, went after it, began bouncing it in front of him, thinking to make his move from a closer position, and -

Topher's eyes widened when he saw what she was going to try. Sam was probably going to eviscerate him for this, if Nic didn't decide to help a busy roommate out and do it while Sam was doing whatever it was prefects did. In a last, desperate play for the preservation of his entrails, Topher pulled his bat back and slammed it into the Bludger as she headed down, aiming to hit her hard as she tried being sneaky about playing the ball twice this time.

Hit or no hit, though, he was determined of one thing: if Nic got the ball to pass it back to Crotalus, she wasn't going to intercept it. If she came back up, it would be after going through him, which wouldn't be easy with him getting right in her way even if he didn't have a Bludger on hand to hit her with. He was functionally an only child, which made him think it was likely that the birthday present his parents could occasionally spend on went faster than whatever her folks could afford for one kid when there were at least three or four other kids playing the same game.   
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> ...Nah, still inadequate, sorry 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 23, 2012 12:37 PM
Behind her, Kate heard the cracking of bats and Bludgers, but she didn’t dare look back to see if she was right about being safe or about to be hit square in the back…or back of the head. That wouldn’t kill her, probably, but she might wake up in a few hours without a clue what she’d done for the past two days or that she’d slept through the loss of another game until someone – probably an irate someone, unless it was one of her sisters – filled her in.

That would be, to prove her exceptional mastery of understatement, bad, but she couldn’t think about it, just listen for the whistle and keep her eyes on the Snitch for now. If she caught the Snitch right before a Bludger hit her in the back of the head, no one would really care if she didn’t remember catching it later, up to and probably including her. The important part would have been the win; it would be helpful if her hand stayed closed around the Snitch after she lost consciousness, but she’d read that there was some way to know who caught it, so even that didn’t really matter.

After a long moment of not getting hit, though, she relaxed just a little, assuming that Derry had successfully gotten the Bludger off her, even if it had done no other good, since Cepheus was enough ahead of her that she could see him and his undamaged state very clearly. And hear him yell, something that made her think her heart was going to stop for one second before she understood what he was yelling and grinned.

He didn’t have the Snitch. He had gone for it, but it had done what it did best and changed things up, and it was still anyone’s game.

He was flying around a lot, but she looked around, squinting against the sun, and decided that now, he was flying at random – maybe from desperation, maybe just trying to burn off some steam after his disappointment, but definitely not with real purpose. So she kept flying, too, in a more controlled way, looking for a speck of gold. It could be on the other side of the Pitch, or it could have doubled back and only be a few feet away; there was no telling, not with the Snitch, at least as far as she knew. There was nothing for it but to keep her eyes open and hope for the best.
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> I thought the idea was that you didn't. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper

May 23, 2012 5:17 PM
Kirstenna cheered silently when Arista got the Quaffle. The fifth year seemed even more determined today than she herself was. That was a good thing, really. Most of the other teams seemed to prize themselves for their win at all costs behavior, which the sixth had always felt was just a tad bit obnoxious. Kirstenna hated how cocky people got and while she ran all the necessary drills with her team, to make sure they were at their very best, she wasn't mean to them.

Still, she did really did want them to win. It was just that the Keeper didn't want to become something that she hated. Kirstenna already felt like she was beginning to change in that direction and she didn't like it one little bit. The Teppenpaw was sure that it was a ploy of the Imposter's. She didn't put anything past that woman.

Kirstenna watched as Linus took the Quaffle from Arista in what appeared to be a completely sneaky maneuver that she could only hope lead to a foul and a penalty shot. She couldn't help enjoying it if Crotalus shot themselves in the foot like that. Which made her somewhat hate herself, taking joy in the misery of others. It was just that Kirstenna was so blasted sick of everyone being down on Teppenpaw. That they were weak, that they sucked. People often made that mistake, taking kindness for weakness. She wanted to correct that assumption.

The Quaffle changed hands once again as Linus handed it off to Sam and then Arista intercepted it again and made for the other side of the pitch where Nic was tending the Crotali goals. Kirstenna really had to hand it to the fifth year, she was certainly doing her job today. As much as the Captain was loathe to admit it, because she didn't believe in treating people differently from each other-after all, that was what her uncle and grandparents did, including her based on the purity of their blood-she really did expect more of Arista as a Chaser than she did either Solomon or Marcus. She had experience while the other two did not.

Kirstenna held her breath as the fifth year went for another goal. Nic seemed to be doing well today but hopefully, he still sucked at Keeping somewhat. She winced as one of the Crotalus beaters, Topher she thought, hit the bludger at Arista again. He really seemed to have it in for her today, but then, she'd been the Teppenpaw Chaser who'd had the Quaffle the most and the other Crotalus Beater seemed to be covering their Seeker, so honestly, Kirstenna supposed she would have done the same in his place. That didn't mean that she was very happy about it though.

11 Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper We'll see about that. 161 Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 23, 2012 8:06 PM
If he had been even the tiniest amount less aware of how much his broom cost, or the tiniest bit less willing to give Teppenpaw a free shot at Nic, Sam would have slammed into Mouthy Girl when she swept in to steal from them again, or at least very seriously considered it. Instead, though, he just turned and went after her, resigning himself to one of those games if Topher didn’t suddenly morph into Edmond any old time now.

Once he realized what was happening, he kind of wished he had done it after all, since clearly she was going to get in a free shot at Nic anyway. One day, he thought, he was going to have to try one of those long runs; all logic, all common sense, said that it was a stupid move, the kind of stupid move that first years pulled, a move that would end with the mover in pieces, but somehow, that never seemed to happen, no matter how hard Beaters tried. It was like there was some spell they cast on themselves or the Pitch to break the normal rules of the universe to suit them and work in their favor or something. If them, then why not him, right?

He sped up, going as fast as he could, gesturing to Linus and Renée to hurry it up, too, not caring if they passed him or not. The important part was that they had to get to that goal and ring it. An interception would be ideal, of course, if Renée could get there in time – she had the best broom of the three of them, he was pretty sure – but if not, then they needed to put a circle around that goal, so that they could get it back quickly, Nic have as many options as possible for getting it back to them, and someone be in a position to try to steal it back from any Teppenpaws who tried to intercept it that way.

He saw her head downward, and Topher follow – good man, if he could actually hit her enough for it to make a difference – and looked wildly for the Quaffle, trying to figure out where it had gone, who had it, what direction he even needed to be pointed, what he needed to be doing, right now to do his part to make this work better.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> It should be easily proven. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font>

May 23, 2012 9:23 PM
As time went on, Paul began to find the game less interesting – he lacked, somehow, the ability to get caught up in it a lot of the time; he wondered why this was, but wasn’t very bothered by it, either – and began to walk the antics of the Teppenpaw reserve across the way. Another Thornton; Paul knew his family was hardly small, with five of them, but since they were at least adequately spaced out, with two years between him and Lize and four between him and Gem and ten between Eliza and Richard, and he was old enough to remember how unpleasant it had been for everyone when his mother was pregnant with first Gemma, a little, and then a lot more with Leo and Richard, he didn’t feel hypocritical about concluding that family was ridiculous.

And not just, at the moment, for their size. He watched, a little bemused, as first the one actually playing went around yelling at everyone – one time apparently at a Crotalus Beater for, well, aiming at one of her teammates; Paul wondered what she thought her team’s Beaters were doing – and then the benched one started making a big hysterical show of it all, too. Were these people crazy, he wondered? If his sister ever started yelling at him during a game, being a distraction like that, he would sabotage her homework or something.

Dear Merlin, don’t let any of them ever get on our team, if there’s more, he thought as the little one shrieked about her sister making a long run. I’d have to rejoin the first string. If someone sitting beside him on the bench had gone on like that, Paul was pretty sure he would have told them to shut up by now.

As it was, he was kind of impressed by the older one, for not being completely distracted. Apparently, being unable to shut up was a family trait, but it was still impressive. Paul could barely concentrate on dull, repetitive work, like Chasing or French verbs, when all he had to bother him was Gemma or Leo or Richard or sometimes, rarely, Eliza making a racket down the hall; in the middle of a game, with so much already going on, one of them screaming at him would have made him severely tempted to chuck his bat at the head of the offending sibling.

He craned his neck to see if the shot had been successful, and, whether it had been or not, if Topher had killed somebody. It was too far away for him to be completely sure, but he wouldn’t be at all surprised if some of the Crotali were growing tense and irritated with this, and the Beaters, unlike the rest of them, had perfectly legitimate ways of expressing their frustrations while they were on the Pitch, and almost as soon as those frustrations happened. Maybe it wasn’t the smartest strategy, but Paul would be very surprised if every Beater didn’t do it sometimes.
0 <font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font> Life's harsh like that 201 <font color="red">Paul Bennett, Reserve</font> 0 5

<font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font>

May 24, 2012 8:25 AM
Nic watched the players abandon him and a felt a small surge of pleased smugness. He really was well suited to playing Keeper. He couldn't think of any other position on any other sport where he could get away with telling his teammates to get lost and they'd consider it part of his job rather than getting offended and accusing him of not being a team player. It was better than seeker really. Seekers had to deal with the other seeker and probably a pair of beaters. Keepers, if their chasers were doing their jobs right, didn't have to deal with anyone, and when the did, it was generally only in short spurts and then they would all go away again.

He took a few moments during his current lull to scan the stands for Rachel Bauer. He hoped she'd seen him being awesome. Unfortunately, at this distance, all the faces sort of blurred together, and the voices all sounded like one great beast rather than a collection of individual ones. Not even Rachel Bauer could stand out.

Then the oldest Teppenpaw chaser interrupted his musing.

He'd seen her coming, of course. There was no way he couldn't have, with her being the kid who stomped on a wasp's nest and the swarm following after her. He was mildly irked by his team. They were supposed to be bothering Kirstenna. He'd told them to do that, and while they had seemed eager to follow his directions, they hadn't even made it to her. This was Teppenpaw, not Aladren. He wasn't supposed to work this hard in a Teppenpaw game.

He felt even more irritation for the yellow robed girl coming at him. She'd just run most of the Pitch in one fell swoop. She didn't pass or try anything more complicated than a route that was hard to predict. It was more difficult to spot which hoop she was going for than it had been for the kid, and he would have been suspicious of any goal she seemed to fixate on since she was an experienced player and for more likely to feint like that, but he thought he figured out the one she was edging toward, that her eye was drawn to more than the other two.

He hedged, as he usually did when he wasn't absolutely certain of her choice (which could still change, of course, and he wanted her to take the one she'd planned so he didn't get too close yet).

Then she feinted to the center, which was dumb because the center was the easiest to get to from where he was, so he wasn't really expecting her to go there, especially since that had been her aim last time and folks rarely went for the same hoop twice. Then she made as if to go for the right one (her left), and that made his heart jump a bit because though he was actually a little closer to it than the right, his momentum was wrong for getting there in time. He had timed his aerial pacing for - yes! That hoop! He'd guessed right!

The ball left her hand and Nic's broom surged. He leaned forward, extending his arms fully ahead of him and closing his hands into fists. Arista tended to throw hard and extended fingertips would only hurt him. Instead his fists punched the ball off course, like Superman colliding with a bird that he hadn't notice because he was too busy watching Metropolis as he searched for Lex Luthor.

The Quaffle clanged against the outer ring of the goal and for one terrible second, Nic thought it might have ricocheted right on through but when he turned his head to see where it had gone, it had bounced off at an oblique angle and had flow off the outside instead. That had been way too close.

He went after it and came up with it a few yards to the outside of the goals. He flew back to the middle, in case Teppenpaw tried its double attack again (though, Topher seemed to know his job here was was taking care of the one most likely to do so). He looked around for a clear opening to a Crotalus player and made the toss.

He didn't even bother with a verbal "Get Lost" this time. It was implied loudly enough, he thought.
1 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> The proof is here. 165 <font color=red>Nic Sawyer, Keeper</font> 0 5

Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp

May 24, 2012 3:23 PM
Arista was still smarting from the Bludger hit, but she wasn’t going to let it stop her from trying to help Teppenpaw to win this game! She knew that all her hard work would show Kirstenna that she took her role on the team seriously and also wanted Teppenpaw to win as much as their Captain did. Ris wasn’t doing it just for that, or that perhaps Kirstenna would see her hard work, she was doing it so that Tepp could win, so SHE could win.

Her hand hurt, and she could tell that it was swelling up, but there wasn’t anything that she wouldn’t do to win this game. Arista’s verve was the only thing that would keep her going through the ridiculous pain in her wrist and thumb from the tendonitis which had left pretty much but had come back hardcore after the Bludger hit. She’d dodged Topher’s next Bludger and when the Quaffle went back into Crotalus hands, she chased after it faster than a dog would chase their tail. She’d have it in for Linus for doing that, there was no way she was expecting that from anyone NOT in Aladren, and now she was madder than mad.

Arista intercepted again both in anger and desire to win. She wondered where Marcus and Solomon were, but then decided that didn’t matter so much. She could get a goal all on her own if Topher’d just leave her alone. Instead, he took another shot at her and thankfully missed. She flew on faster and faster, hearing the familiar sound of the Bludger behind her. She swerved out of the way of the black ball and thankfully it didn’t follow her. How I managed to get away from that one I’ll never know… she thought to herself as she feinted the shot towards two of the hoops before throwing it towards the third.

No luck.

Nic punched it out of the way. REALLY?! she thought to herself. What the bloody hell… All the fifth year had to say was that. She knew that her attempt at going all the way across the Pitch was probably stupid, but she wasn’t sure where the boys were and every time she tried to pass the Crotalus Chasers were right there. She wasn’t going to have that play out again, not if she could have had a chance to make the shot.

The Quaffle clanged against the outer ring of the goal hoop and Arista, even for just a moment, wondered if perhaps his punch of the red ball would be a help to her. Come on… You can go in! she thought as she watched it bounce away from the hoop. NUTS! she thought as Nic went after it. Crotalus’ Keeper sent the Quaffle towards one of his own Chasers, but she wasn’t going to let one of them get it.

She snatched the ball right in the middle of the toss, and spotted Marcus. With a clear opening she flew right at him and practically handed him the ball. "Go for it!" she said to him as she flew off, pretending to still have the Quaffle in hand to pull the other Crotali away from the hoops to give Marcus the shot to get passed Nic.
0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp The proof is in the pudding, not here. (WoTW) 0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp 0 5

Marcus Crosby, Teppenpaw Chaser

May 24, 2012 3:45 PM
Quidditch was really hard, Marcus kept finding out. He was often really close to catching the ball, but somebody always got there first. It definitely wasn’t the broom’s fault—it was a recently released model from a respectable brand, pricey—so he figured he had work to do before the next game. He didn’t realize that if his team lost, no game would happen until next year.

Of course, his team was probably not going to lose. He had faith in his teammates and how very talented they were. The blond was young and perhaps a bit naïve, but he knew Teppenpaw could do this. All of them were so, so good! Maybe he wasn’t so great yet, but he had time. At eleven, possibilities were endless. He didn’t know if he’d play every single year, but he wanted to do his best and have fun when he did.

The ball got really near the hoops, but the length Crotalus Keeper punched it out of the way. Marcus wasn’t sure if he thought it was fair how long that boy was—he could, it seemed, block all of the hoops at once!—but then again, it wasn’t really his fault. Height wasn’t really a choice. It just kind of happened. So far, the first year didn’t show a lot of vertical promise, standing a few inches under the average for a boy his age, but there was time. Maybe one day he would be really tall!

Arista found her way to possession of the Quaffle, and Marcus grinned. Then she, like, sat the ball in his hands and told him to “go for it”. Well, he wasn’t going to not do what she said! She was older and more experienced, so he trusted her judgment. “Okay!” he beamed, racing off like a bullet towards the hoops once more.

Red orb held tightly, he decided going straight would be a less good idea. Instead, he swerved a little, his speed slower now. Marcus flew in casual curves, hopefully disarming and hypnotic zig-zags fun for him and maybe even effective. Lazily he turned, leaning this way and then that. It was good practice for steering and stuff. He giggled to himself at that thought. Usually practices were to make games better, but here he was, doing both at once.

Nearest to the left-most hoop and going slowly, it was quite likely it seemed that was his target. However, he suddenly kicked forward with all of his childhood might, accelerating towards the right-most one. The ball left his fingertips with accuracy, and he really, really, really hoped this one went in.
12 Marcus Crosby, Teppenpaw Chaser I like pudding! 225 Marcus Crosby, Teppenpaw Chaser 0 5

<font color="yellow">Laurie, Beater</font>

May 24, 2012 4:00 PM

Laurie couldn’t get his ahead around how much he had missed playing this position in the first place. Yes, chaser was fun and exciting, but nothing could be compared to the power that came with beating. Being able to control them – in a way of course – made him very happy. The redhead wasn’t prone to violence, but since the balls were stronger than him it gave him a sense of exhilaration just like when he helped out with the bigger animals at home. The bludgers were some kind of deadly animal looking to unseat any players they could find, and he was one of the keepers! It was so much fun.

It seemed Laurie and Derry had an unspoken agreement to stay on their players. While he was keeping tabs on the seekers, Laurie had the responsibility to keep tabs on everyone else. Derry’s job was really important, especially because the seekers were the ones that won the game. Also, the Crotalus Beater was huge and Derry was older than him.

The younger Teppenpaw could hardly keep up with was happening between the chasers or the seekers; his prime objective was locating the bludgers and sending them away from the yellow players. His sole focus was on those two bludgers.

But he caught of a glimpse of Topher Calhoun aiming repeatedly at Arista. Laurie frowned and searched for the nearest bludger to send to the other beater. If the Crotalus team was minus a beater it would be easier to take care of his teammates and do more damage to the other team.

The redhead swung his bat with every inch of force he could muster and aimed the bludger at Topher. Laurie could hear the swish of the wond as the bludger’s direction had been changed by his swing. It was one of the more beautiful noises in the world, because it meant that he was taming them.
0 <font color="yellow">Laurie, Beater</font> Pudding is awesome 0 <font color="yellow">Laurie, Beater</font> 0 5

Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp

May 24, 2012 4:24 PM
Arista had basically handed Marcus the ball and told him to go for it. The look on his face told her that he understood what he had to do and she beamed at him before she flew off. She was determined to let him get his shot before someone could intervene! She stuck around long enough to see that he had taken hold of the ball and went zigzagging away towards the hoops again and with a smile on, she held her hands like she had the ball, and flew around the other way. She only hoped that perhaps Topher and the others would follow her, NOT Marcus.

The fifth year Teppenpaw girl could care less if Topher tried to hit her again as long as Marcus made at least the attempt at the goal. Then again, if an attempt was made, perhaps that meant that a goal could be scored too. Hm… she thought to herself as she flew on her broom and turned around fast to hopefully see the others were following her.

For anyone who was following her, they got a rude awakening that she didn’t actually have the Quaffle and that hopefully her mini-chaser had gotten the ball passed Nic. If Nic had made another save, it was at least a chance that he wouldn’t have had. Arista sped up and with a huge grin on her face showed all behind her that she was ball-less.

Then she pushed her broom faster than ever to get back towards the Crotalus hoops to try to get to the Quaffle from Marcus’ shot. This game could be ours. It really could be. Come on Kate… Find that Snitch! she thought to herself as she flew faster and faster to catch the rebound whether the ball went in or not.

Out of the corner of her eye, she spotted Laurie, hitting a Bludger right at Topher. That’s right kiddo… she thought, smile widening on her face as she didn’t stop to see if Topher got his medicine handed back to him or not. She was going to help Teppenpaw win to the best of her ability.

0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp Yes, it is. Chocolate or Vanilla, or more! 0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp 0 5

<font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font>

May 24, 2012 4:35 PM
One minute, everything had been going great. Well, as great as it could when some Teppenpaw decided to do what Teppenpaws sometimes did and make long runs and survive because the higher powers had a thing for annoyingly chirpy people who favored too-bright colors in their decorating and let the Bludgers always just miss them. Nic had saved, he had called his people in so someone could get it, Topher had been very clearly blocking the way of Crotalus Annoyance Number One, and then, somehow, the brat had gotten ‘round Topher and somehow gotten the ball again and, er…what was she doing with it?

Teppenpaws. Sam officially gave up. Kirstenna was all right, even if he couldn’t help but be awkward around her since that date thing, but the rest of them were clearly not right in the brainpan. Too much help from those higher powers frying their reasoning skills, he guessed. She had gone right over to Triumph Midget, and why, exactly, would she fly away from the goals she was supposed to be shooting for if she still had the Quaffle? If she really wanted to go to the other end and score a handful of goals for Crotalus, Sam would not object to this in the least, but he thought she was nuts, not completely stupid.

So instead of following her, he did what he thought a smart person would do and watched the one she had handed the Quaffle to, feeling pleased as always that his team had the red robes and happy today that Teppenpaw had the ones the Quaffle showed up the most vividly against and then…watched as Triumph Midget wove around like he thought he was at a dance party. Okay, then….

For a moment, Sam entertained the idea that he had eaten some bad mushrooms at supper last night and was now having an extremely weird dream thanks to his stomachache. It made a lot more sense than anything that had happened today being for real, really….

Then he shook his head and got a good, close eye on Triumph again. He wasn’t too perturbed when he went left even though that wasn’t the direction Sam was in, since he trusted Nic and the other two to get it back as well or better than he could, but when the kid went right, Sam didn’t pause to think. Instead, he threw himself forward on his broom, only just keeping his seat, and intercepted it en route, just as the Teppenpaws kept doing. He allowed himself a grim smile for about half a second because of that. Then he turned and flew through the air as fast as he could toward the Teppenpaw goals, imagining for an indulgent moment that he was a blur like Superman as he covered ground like an avenging giant set to bear the torch of Crotalus’ honor, or something similarly high-flung and grand sounding.

Unfortunately, this meant he was moving in the same direction as Crotalus Annoyance Number One, so he had another thought as he lined up with another red robe after slowing down to a more reasonable pace and attempting the pass: if she got in the way one more time, he was going to have to think seriously about the possibility that he could stop being Superman and turn into Don Corleone as far as Topher was concerned. He would take the penalty gladly if Topher would just hit her directly with the bat instead of bothering with Bludgers, which needed space and time that gave her time to exercise that preternatural luck of hers....

Which had just run out, because as he looked around, the air was empty of her. She'd gone back the wrong way. Maybe Topher really was doing his best; he was going to yell at Renee, though, if it turned out that he was practically on his own here because she was in one of her moods and was off staring at the sky or something.
16 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> The pudding is a lie. 163 <font color="red">Sam Bauer, Chaser</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 24, 2012 5:02 PM
There she – and how was she –

Topher’s mother would have raised an ominous eyebrow if she heard some of the things he said under his breath as he realized that Chaser had gotten around him again, but the truth was, he’d learned most of them from her. She just didn’t use them unless she was angry, as he was in a very big way right now, and usually didn’t use so many of them in one sentence. He swung back into the game, planning now to disregard caution and do his best to hurt her next time. It looked like the only way, and besides, if he aimed for the back of her head, he’d call it lucky if he broke her arm.  

He looked, scowling in a way that should have made any Teppenpaw who looked in his direction back off a little while he searched for his next opening, suspiciously at his bat for a second, but since it didn’t seem to be damaged in any way, he could only conclude that Teppenpaw had fixed the Bludgers, because he was not bad at what he did. He had three years of evidence to support that, and flukes like that did not happen. It was more likely that Kirstenna Melcher, or maybe Kate Bauer, would do something that underhanded in their desperation not to be the worst team in the history of the school than it was that he’d just suddenly not be able to so much as tap anyone today.

His expression softened slightly as he cheered for Sam’s interception of one of the less important Chasers’ attempt at a goal, but went very close to back where it had been when he began looking again for a Bludger –  

- And then heard a whistling noise behind him, and looked over to see that the new Beater, Laurie Stratford, was just handing him one. How considerate of him; Topher was going to have to get him a stylish yellow hat for Christmas or something, if the guy was going to be nice enough to just hand him something for nothing like that. That was the nicest thing anyone had done for him all day. That was really decent of Laurie, really decent indeed, just to hand another Beater the means to act against the other guy’s own team.

…Or else to mock him for how things had been going so far, but Topher chose to look on the bright side. Optimism was what made the world go ‘round, that was what his mother always said. Moving out of the way to avoid being hit by the gift he had just been sent just when he wanted it, he took the opportunity to wave at Laurie and yell “Thanks, pal!” before happily hitting the Bludger as hard as he could toward the nearest yellow-wearing, bat-free robe, not caring at all which Chaser was in it at this point, so long as he got a good, solid hit on them.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> A big, big lie 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp

May 24, 2012 5:14 PM
Arista had been hoping that the Crotali would follow her, but it looked like Sam hadn’t followed her at all. She wondered sometimes about that boy. Ris wondered what Teppenpaw would have to do to stop being treated like they were vermin. They were certainly NOT vermin. Sure, they were nice, but that didn’t mean they were bad. And NOW, the red-head was MAD.

Marcus had clearly tried to make the shot as she’d told him to, so when she turned back she smiled towards Marcus to tell him he’d done what she’d asked him to and he wouldn’t be penalized for it not going in since Sam had clearly intercepted his throw. Meanwhile, Arista took her broom ever faster closer and closer to Sam’s run across to Kirstenna. She leaned into the broomstick and felt herself move faster and faster to catch up to him.

Sam lined up with another red-robed Chaser and attempted another pass. That’s what you think… she said to herself as she forced herself between the two red-robed Chasers just as Linus had done with her. She scooped it up and ducked out of the way of both Crotali she’d flown between and felt a rush of adrenaline as she’d never felt before. She turned fast and in a zigzagged pattern, flew even faster back towards Nic’s hoops, Quaffle in hand once again, a look of triumph on her face. She didn’t care how mad that made Sam or the rest of Crotalus. Teppenpaw would get their chance. Their win was just around the corner.

Crotalus was about to find that out.

Then she heard the tell-tale sound of a Bludger behind her, AGAIN. She ducked out of the way and veered off to her right, and then she dove downwards until she was almost at the ground. Only then did she fly up fast and hardcore right towards Crotalus’ hoops once again. That’s what you think Topher! she thought as she slipped up the pole towards the hoops and shot the red Quaffle harder than ever before into the hoop all the way on the left.

Arista didn’t care what Topher or the others thought about her, she only cared that she had a chance to shoot the ball right into the hoop that Nic wasn’t anywhere near. Teppenpaw meant more to her than what other people thought of her. A Teppenpaw win would solidify that both for her and for Kirstenna. The oldest Thornton girl could care less if people liked her or not. She was sixteen years old, what did the rest of it all matter? She was who she was, and nobody was going to change her, BUT her.
0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp The Pudding NEVER lies… 0 Arista Thornton, Chaser, Tepp 0 5

Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper

May 24, 2012 6:49 PM
Kirstenna groaned inwardly when Nic blocked Arista's shot. This was unbelievable . He was not that good a Keeper. Sure, she expected the other sixth year to get a little better at his position, like she had at throwing, but really? This had to be the work of the Imposter. There was no way he'd gotten that good that fast. He had to be Imperiused.

Fortunately, when Nic threw the Quaffle, Arista was right there to get it again. Admittedly, had the fifth year not been on the same team as Kirstenna, she would have assumed the younger Teppenpaw had gone crazy and that it too, was due to the Imposter's...manipulations. The Quidditch Coach was a sneaky one-most of the time, other than hexing that firstie, which showed the Imposter was getting a bit too cocky, which was both comforting and terrifying at the same time, the latter because it meant she might be ready to do something big that took down everyone but the former because it might get her caught.

However, as Arista was on Kirstenna's team, she really appreciated all that she was doing, even though the fifth year still sort of appeared insane. The Captain had to admit that the other two Chasers weren't doing all that much. Marcus at least seemed to be right in there, but she had no idea what Solomon was doing or where he was so Arista's...madness was really much needed.

Besides, Kirstenna was somewhat beginning to believe that Quidditch affected people's brains. Sort of like WAIL believed, but not in the way they did. It didn't turn girls into lesbians-the Teppenpaw most definitely liked guys, her eyes flickered briefly towards Sam-but made them well, risk life and limb for the pursuit of glory or at least to avoid humiliation. Really, Kirstenna was aiming for the latter. If they won today, they'd have to play in the finals and while she would strongly preferred to win that, what she really just wanted to win a game and make it.

Arista passed the ball to Marcus and the first year went for a goal. However, before the goal had a chance to reach Nic, Sam intercepted it. He threw it to a Crotalus Chaser, as Topher Calhoun tried to hit Arista again , he was also apparently going completely psychotic (or was under the Imposter's mind control), and the fifth year wedged herself in as Linus had earlier and tried for another goal. Kirstenna held her breath, hoping this time it would be successful.

If Nic caught it again, then she'd be sure he was under Imperius.
11 Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper Because it doesn't have a mouth? 161 Kirstenna,Tepp Keeper 0 5

<font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font>

May 25, 2012 4:41 PM
In…and out. In…and out. In…and out.

For a moment, Topher concentrated on that, and on getting his mind back into the proper lines. This was not personal. It never was. That was the thing to remember, the thing to always remember: no matter what happened, Quidditch was not personal. He swung at people, he knocked them out of the air if he could, he shrugged it off and went to the next target if he couldn’t. He did not. Take it. Personally. When he started to get emotional about it, when he started to get frustrated with a specific target instead of just aiming for her because she was the biggest problem his team had on this field of play, then he had a problem. His job was to get in there and wreak havoc on the other team, but always to keep his own head out of it and on the job.

For some people, the game was fun, for others it was desperate, for some it was just a family thing; at the kind of level they would play against Aladren in the finals, even without Edmond, it was definitely a job. This was the practice run for the job. Chasers got frustrated and happy and generally emotional, and that led to some good moves and some bad ones; Beaters just did a job, keeping in mind the positions of everyone around them and maintaining their strength so they could keep playing as long as it took the Seekers to finish up. If a Beater got all emotional, he was going to hurt himself and endanger everyone around him, instead of just the people he wanted to endanger, and that was no good.

This, he focused on, resisting the urge to rub his shoulder, which was definitely starting to complain about how much he had been using it recently. He had to take a minute here, or he was going to tire out before the Snitch was caught, since another look in that direction made him think that neither Kate nor Cepheus was anywhere near it. So the object of most of his efforts was making another run; she had all the subtlety of a raging boar, so he expected Nic to save it, just like he had all the others she’d attempted because she either didn’t know how to play a team sport or had just come to the conclusion that she really couldn’t trust her incompetent sidekicks at all. He did not have to take her out just for the sake of taking her out; Sam would get that, once his head cooled off and he no longer wanted to wring the girl’s neck. When the ball went back out, he’d aim at any Teppenpaw Chaser who happened to be in the way, either to hit her as she carried the Quaffle or tried to intercept it or to hit one of the other two to cut out her passing options, but for now, he was going to not ruin his shoulder lancing at shadows.

He glanced again at the Seekers, willing Cepheus to go ahead and catch the Snitch already so they could all get off the Pitch and go try to party, though. He didn’t think anyone had been expecting a workout like this from Teppenpaw, even knowing that their Seeker was a disadvantage to them, and it was getting old with Arista suddenly deciding to have become untouchable after years as just another anonymous face playing for a throwaway first-round team and keeping anyone from ever getting anywhere. Frustration out here was really just a by-product, he thought, of boredom and creeping tiredness.
0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> Because <i>there is no pudding</i> 0 <font color="red">Topher Calhoun, Beater</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 25, 2012 5:47 PM
Though he had been flying around quite a lot, the sun was beating down on Cepheus’s thin shoulders and he had to brush back his blonde hair. His body was feeling slightly overheated in this Quidditch robes even if they were made for the desert. He kept his blue eyes on Bauer, hoping she would see the snitch already just so he would have something to do and didn’t just sit here like a fool. Aggravated just staring at the Teppenpaw, he turned away and wished that he had more experience. He lowered his broom considerably, wondering if the snitch would bother going down this low. He had an inkling that Gareth had a thing with heights, though he hadn’t been extremely verbal about it. The sun was just so hot and seeds of doubt had been planted into the boy’s brain. What if Crotalus lost this? What if they didn’t make it to the finals? What if they lost to Teppenpaw?

Cepheus swallowed nervously and didn’t fancy his suddenly sweaty palms. He was feeling that horrible nervous twisting in his stomach again at the thought of failing. Cepheus wished then for some sort of experience, and as if his wish had been granted, he saw a glint of gold high above him. Not even allowing himself to think twice, he zoomed straight up after his, his broom going nearly vertical in his effort to get to it.

He knew by now Bauer probably knew what he saw and Cepheus followed the snitch like his life depended on it. It did, really, but that was beside the current point. The sweat was cooled by the wind on his face, slicing past him almost painfully at the speed he was going at. The snitch was quick; of course it was. It flew in front of him, leading him on like a donkey with a carrot, and he had to keep going for it.

A few times it dropped unexpectedly and after the third time Cepheus felt a little sick. His stomach wasn’t thanking him, and he hoped to all things good that he wouldn’t be a disappointment, that this would be worth it. There was so much on his shoulders now; the respect of his house, of his father, the Princeton name, his brothers. He couldn’t lose. Merlin, he wouldn’t be able to bear it. Cepheus pressed on, eyes locked on the gold as it weaved over and under the other Quidditch players and bludgers.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> Race to the death begins...now. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font>

May 25, 2012 6:45 PM
Back and forth Kate went, her eyes darting from the air to the other Seeker to the Beaters, looking for the Snitch, for Cepheus to make a move toward what might be the Snitch, for one Beater to try to take someone out and the other to try to block that, for anything, really. Seeker could be a glamorous position (she had noted that it seemed to be especially shiny for those who occasionally won), after the game and in theory, but for those playing it, Kate had discovered that it was as common as it was not for a lot of the game to really be kind of boring. She had to imagine the endless back-and-forthing, in goalless games, got tiring on its own after a while, but at least the Chasers always did have something to look at besides the grass and the sky, which was as often as not all Seekers had for extended periods of time if their Beaters were either playing each other or not really playing much at all.

Right now, it looked like Derry had knocked their Bludger out of range and now they weren’t playing much at all, just hovering protectively over her and Cepheus for when a Bludger inevitably came back this way, looking for a chance, while she and the second year kept looking for their own chances at glory. She guessed that suited her; she was moving toward the mentality of just wanting something to happen, that feeling that came with a game going on for a while, but she still had enough sense to know that the last thing she really wanted was for a Bludger to come around. Knowing her luck, she would be the one who got hit.

She turned again, looking all around, and then – saw Cepheus going up, and going up fast. Kate’s mind froze, but the rest of her moved without thought, hurrying up and through the air, hurrying after the same thing he was, desperately trying not to lose her seat with each maneuver around how the Snitch was moving….

Come on, she thought, her ability to do so returning to her as her stomach filled with acid. Come on, come on, come on, go faster, come on, got to get there, got to get there, got to get there, can’t miss it again –

...Oh, no.

They were going into the game, by the looks of it. Kate hunched lower over her broom, bracing for the worst possible, short of losing, way for this game to go. It had been a while since the Snitch had been dis-obliging enough to take them into the midst of the other players, she thought, but here it went now, and it really was anyone’s game with them having to work around all these people, it could disappear again at any second, she was just trying to keep her eyes open against the rush of air so that she didn’t blink and then open them to find it gone….
16 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> Run for your life, Mister. 170 <font color="yellow">Kate Bauer, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font>

May 25, 2012 10:53 PM
This was the final stretch. Or so Cepheus felt. The air was being sucked out of his lungs and he tried to keep his mouth closed. It was difficult to remember, with him slicing through the air so quickly that his lips were getting chapped. His tongue darted out to swipe over them briefly, but it was no help. Cepheus instead tried to keep his eyes on the snitch. Bauer was with him now, following the snitch herself, and Cepheus could feel his heart pound, the adrenaline rushing through his blood as a slight panic set in. I must get it!

He pressed his broom to go faster, faster, even though it was going as fast as it could possibly go without him losing control of it. Still, it could go faster if he wanted it to, right? Sometimes fancy brooms weren't the most reliable. Of course, Cepheus didn't know that from experience.

He imagined himself as one of those really fancy Seekers in the professional matches, and suddenly the pressure mounted. The snitch went straight down and Cepheus followed after it obediently. He narrowed his eyes as the ground came up rapidly. He tried to still his fear of smashing into the ground and breaking every bone in his body, but it was beginning to take over his mind. He was going crazy, he decided. Cepheus had no breath left in his lungs and he had to gasp for air the same moment the snitch levelled out, and his gasp was cut short by his breathless pulling.

As quick as he tried to pull his broom back up, he wasn't given enough time and instead made a mad dash for the snitch, snatching it out of the air and bringing the snitch to his heart with his right hand. Glee filled his heart, but he had been so focused on getting the snitch that he hadn't realised that he'd let go of his broom. A second and a half after catching the snitch, he crashed to the ground, tumbling a few feet away from his broom and when he finally stilled, right hand still fiercely clutching the snitch to his chest, Cepheus groaned. There was a piercing pain in his right wrist, but when he relaxed his shaking fingers, there was the glint of gold. In his hand.

A burst of joy erupted in his chest and it overwhelmed him for a moment. He sat up quickly, cradling his right hand to his chest and taking the snitch in his left. "I did it," he gasped, staring at the gold, feeling the cool, round ball in his fingers. The pain in his wrist wasn't so bad. "I did it!" he shouted, holding up the golden snitch with his left hand. He stood up quickly, beaming. He could meet the eyes of every person in the stands now and the eyes of his teammates. He'd caught it! They'd won!

When Cepheus had questioned why anyone would want to play professional Quidditch earlier, he had been a fool. Here and now, with the snitch in his hand, he had the answer. He couldn't stop the brilliant smile from spreading onto his face, delight in his eyes. This feeling, despite his broken wrist, made everything worth it.
0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> It's a good thing we're flying, not running. 0 <font color="red">Cepheus Princeton, Seeker</font> 0 5

<font color=silver>Coach Pierce</font>

May 26, 2012 6:37 PM
0 <font color=silver>Coach Pierce</font> Crotalus wins! 150-0 (nm) 0 <font color=silver>Coach Pierce</font> 0 5