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Thread: The Life and Times of Iris Potter (& associates) [A Lady Selina roleplaying session in "But for a Stone"]

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    The Life and Times of Iris Potter (& associates) [A Lady Selina roleplaying session in "But for a Stone"]

    From the Grimoire of Lady Selina:

    "Iris Potter and the Philosopher's Stone"
    (A what-if timeline featuring a "Girl-Who-Lived", devised for the Matou Housewarming Party)

    In this world, there are few things more interesting to people than "what-ifs." In my case alone, I sometimes wonder: what if I'd been sorted into a different house? What if I had lost that bet to Malfoy early in the year? What if I'd gone to a different school, like the Beauxbatons Academy that my penpal Liliana currently attends? What if I'd never been introduced to D&D? Or what if...what if, I had been born into a family of practitioners who used jewels as a medium for their arts, and conducted strange rituals involving necromancy in an attempt to reach the origin of all things, as unlikely as it was?

    (Well, truth be told, the last one was a bit wild even for me - it only came up in the wake of a conversation with Sialim Sokaris, in which the odd Ravenclaw questioned the need for wands and the utility of having ghosts lingering around Hogwarts).

    Still, those are just small, personal what-ifs, and as much fun as they are to think about, they wouldn't be much fun to base a game around. After all, no one really cares about these what-ifs except the person involved, right?

    To craft a more compelling alternate history, it's better to find a societal what-if: a what-if whose effects transcend the personal to impact others in a significant way.

    And so I turn to the end of what Britain calls the Wizarding War (a terrible name, as far as I'm concerned, since it implies there have never been previous wars among wizards, when the Great Wizarding War, which drew in most of Europe, and involved an incident or two in the USA, ended only half a century or so ago).

    To be precise, I turn to the Potter family, the last casualties of the war, whose sacrifice brought down the one called Voldemort, and I pose a what-if.

    What if, on that fateful night, not all of the Potters had died? What if a child - who I will make a girl, so I don't offend anyone who actually knew the family - had lived?

    ...and what if, because of that, the Dark Lord too, had survived, albeit as something less than the meanest ghost, as might be expected of a lich separated from his vessel. Perhaps, in those final moments, he unwittingly made her a phylactery, and thus an anchor for his existence, which is why she lived. (The prophecy about the fallen Potter child, which includes references to how the Dark Lord would "mark the child as his equal, and how either must die at the hands of the other, for neither can live while the other survives" could be made to support this). As for why he has not simply resurrected himself, one might say that the same magic used by her family to destroy his physical vessel inflicted a powerful curse upon his lingering soul, preventing him from simply re-forming his vessel without outside aid.

    And there it is. From a little bit of research, I've derived a protagonist, an antagonist, and an overarching conflict (the Dark Lord wanting to regain a body so he can affect the material world and make his triumphant return) that most would be invested in.

    Setting Basics:

    Protagonist: Iris Jane Potter, the only daughter of Lily and James Potter, who survived her encounter with the Dark Lord, and so was styled the Girl-Who-Lived. To prevent various factions of Magical Britain from making use of her to further their agendas (say, by engaging her to one of their children), she was raised by her Muggle relatives, and kept ignorant about the world of magic - though this is unknown to the general public, with most in Wizarding Britain speculating that she had gone to travel the world, was being trained in secret as an heroine who would rid the world of darkness once and for all, or perhaps had fallen into an enchanted sleep from which she was destined to awaken when her people needed her once more. She discovers the truth of her heritage (and how her parents did not die in a "car accident") when she receives a Hogwarts letter, courtesy of a half-savage half-giant, who kidnaps her, taking her away from the only family she has ever known.

    Antagonist: The wraith of Lord Voldemort, otherwise called "You-Know-Who", the great lich who nearly overthrew Magical Britain before his "death" eleven years ago. Cursed by the Potters, he is unable to re-form a vessel for himself without assistance, and so has been seeking out impressionable but talented individuals to assist him in his rise return to power, promising great wealth, forbidden knowledge and a place at his side.

    MacGuffin: The Philosopher's Stone, the greatest creation of Alchemy, which not only allows instantaneous transmutations (and do things like turning lead to gold) but can also produce the Elixir of Life, capable of removing any curse, and allowing one to recover even from death itself. For the purpose of this scenario, the Stone will be hidden at Hogwarts by Albus Dumbledore, following the murder of his late master, the alchemist Nicholas Flamel.

    Important NPCs:

    • Headmaster Albus Dumbledore, apprentice to the late Nicholas Flamel
    • Lord Severus Black, Potions Master of Hogwarts (dresses, as name might suggest, in black robes of a rather severe cut. He glances over the new students, seemingly...unimpressed by what he sees. But then, it doesn't seem he's impressed by much. Except perhaps...)
    • Lady Andromeda Black, Advanced Charms instructor / Healer at Hogwarts, the head of the Most Ancient and Noble House of Black, and incidentally, Lord Severus' lovely wife. While she has rather patrician features, her eyes are notably kinder than those of her husband, and she prefers more earthy tones, much like her children...
      • Alberio Rigel Black, a well-groomed, happy 8 year old who takes after his mother, with wavy brown hair and hazel-colored eyes
      • Alkaid Merak Black, a serene, mysterious girl who takes after her father, with lustrous black hair and eyes the color of night

    • Remus Lupin, Care of Magical Creatures Instructor, an exhausted-looking man with a pale face lined with worries, a rather unkempt head of grey hair, and a rather shabby set of wizard's robes darned in several places. An old friend of the Potter family, who has never gotten over their deaths
    • Gilderoy Lockhart, History of Magic Professor, a rather handsome man dressed in robes of gold, taking over from Professor Binns for a semester while the phantom is on sabbatical, who is seated together with his apprentice (and assistant)
    • Nymphadora Black, Lockhart's lover, and the stepdaughter of Lord Black. Rumor has it that Lockhart only accepted the position as History Professor as Lord Black, rather...insisted that she have a year of training before he would trust Lockhart to take his daughter out on an adventure...unsupervised, or could ask for her hand.
    • Arthur Weasley, Muggle Studies Professor, who is new to the position, having worked until recently as a clerk in the Ministry
    • Quirinus Quirrell, Defense against the Dark Arts

    Events thus far:

    Trip to Diagon Alley: Iris encountered Draco and befriended him, convincing him to escort her around Diagon Alley and pay for her purchases

    • Iris is cagey about her past, saying she will tell Draco in time
    • Draco tells Iris about Hagrid's past as a "killer", which disturbs her, given the violence of his assault on her family, who may not always be in the right, but raised her for the last ten years
    • Draco informs her of certain well-to-do families whose scions would be good to know - like the Parkinsons, Notts, Greengrasses - as well as how a certain family notorious for its irresponsibility and disregard for social mores (the Weasleys) should be avoided
    • Draco buys Iris a biography of Lockhart, the new history teacher at Hogwarts, as well as one covering her own life
    • Iris meets Lucius, who wishes her luck in the coming year, and learning of Hagrid's actions towards Iris' family, informs him that he intends to see the matter investigated by the Ministry, since its a curious thing that Hagrid was able to do all these things - when he was barred from using magic after being expelled from Hogwarts years ago

    Riding the Hogwarts Express: Arriving at Platform 9 and 3/4, Iris catches the attention of everyone, with people milling about her due to her prominent scar. Draco waves for her to join him, but she shakes her head, caught up by a gaggle of what turn out to be very pretty second year Ravenclaws.

    • From a short conversation with Cho Chang et al, she learns that a) people are obsessed with her, b) they all expect her to have some kind of powerful magic, c) that there is all manner of gossip about the teachers - including Professor Gilderoy Lockhart and his apprentice/lover, young Nymphadora Black.
    • Iris takes her leave of the Ravenclaws, citing a prior obligation, and steps out into the hallway, where she finds a bushy-haired brunette wandering about, helping a somewhat heavyset boy look for his lost toad. She joins them for a bit, meeting little success, though she manages to alert a perfect - a certain Robert Hillard, to the fact that there is a lost toad about, with Longbottom joining the prefect.
    • Hermione gushes over the Girl-Who-Lived, having read all about her (listing off quite a few books, in fact!), and asks what magic she knows. Iris is somewhat cagey about this, saying that her magic is somewhat dangerous and shouldn't be demonstrated on a train, but that she'd be willing to show her later. Hermione agrees.
    • After asking around to find where Draco and friends are sitting, Iris takes Hermione to the compartment, which happens to be adjacent to a nearly empty one, occupied by a single purple-haired girl with dusky skin. They ask if Malfoy is next door, to which the girl nods.
    • Draco is delighted to see Iris, though is nonplussed that she has another girl with her. Iris introduces Hermione as a good friend and apprentice, who she has promised to instruct in her unique magic, and that they had been looking for Longbottom's lost toad.
    • Draco's compartment has only one seat - something that is remedied after Crabbe and Goyle are dispatched to join the toad hunt
    • A conversation ensues pertaining houses, choices, and ethics, with Iris declaring that she wishes to see a world where people are constantly moving forward, and that if the strictures of society stands in her way, then it is not she who is wrong, but society - and thus society must be overthrown. People must constantly push the limits of what is possible, seeking to be more than what they were, because without ambition, there is no future.
    • Sokaris comes in around this time, posing some questions about this viewpoint, mostly with regard to society and stability - and how the very mediocrity of society was what allowed social structures and order to be maintained. She introduces herself as an orphan from Egypt, a ward of the Center for Alchemical Studies, who will be going from school to school in Europe over the next few years. She is looking forward to studying at Hogwarts this year under the tutelage of Lord Severus Black, the famous Potioneer.
    • Lord Black, revealed to be Draco's godfather, happens to be the spouse of Lady Andromeda Black, the head of the Black Family - and the step-father of Nymphadora Black
    • After some further comments from Iris regarding how those who do not struggle, who do not seek to transcend should be purged, Hermione...leaves the compartment, feeling rather upset and betrayed by her idol's...rather Social Darwinist ideology, which to her mind, sound very much like something a villain would say.
    • Iris goes after Hermione, and spends a good while looking for her. She eventually finds her effectively hiding in a compartment with Fred and George, who make it clear that Hermione does not wish to see her, and that even if she's the Girl-Who-Lived, she can't force her beliefs down people's throats.
    • Iris returns to Draco's compartment to find that most of the people there are engrossed in a conversation with Sokaris regarding potions and the inefficiency of current recipes. Upon entering, she's asked about her 'apprentice' and somewhat flippantly mentions that after some discussion, she decided that Granger's philosophy was not compatible with hers, and has dismissed her as an apprentice. This was done in a misguided attempt to save face; it backfired, with a rather severe reputation hit ensuing, as many of the others wondered if the Girl-Who-Lived was someone who could actually be relied upon to pursue a serious relationship.
    • For the rest of the journey, the attention of those in the compartment is mostly focused on Sokaris and the knowledge she freely offers

    Arrival at Hogwarts: In which Iris disembarks from the train, takes her first steps into what Selina calls "the moonlit world" (to which Shinji twitches), gets sorted, and meets Lily Moon (Liliana Spencer-Moon)

    • Sticks close to Sokaris on the way, notices that the purple-haired girl mostly listens, instead of actively contributing to conversations
    • Upon entering the antechamber to the Great Hall, speculates with other students as to how sorting will actually take place
      • Ronald Weasley suggests perhaps wrestling a troll is involved
      • Su Li wonders if it will be a question as to how one would approach wrestling a troll
      • Someone wonders if it will be a written test, with Ronald saying he would rather wrestle a troll
      • Sokaris briefly describes the tradition at Ilvermorny, and suggests that a magical artifact of some kind will be involved
      • Iris jokingly suggests a personality test of some kind

    • The doors to the Great Hall open, with the students getting their first glimpse at the some of the students and teachers they will be spending their next few years with.


    • Iris' Sorting, wherein she discovers that (surprise, surprise!), the Sorting Hat offered her a quiz of sorts
      • Question 1: What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen Ethiopian swallow? - Iris could not answer
      • Question 2: The Trolley problem, with a collapsed mother on one track, and a daughter trying to free her, and a car full of potions bound for St. Mungo's on the other - Iris chose to sacrifice the mother and daughter for the sake of the greater good
      • Question 3: If you - and the rest of the fresh off the boat first years were trapped in a hallway with a rampaging troll - what would you do? Iris chose to ask others to stand by the door and taunt the troll with what magic they knew, in the hope that the troll, while trying to get at them, might smash the door open. Iris specifically wished to avoid the front lines, mentioning that it would be easy enough to get someone else to lure the troll, assuming she told them she had a plan. A few would die, but the rest would survive.
      • Verdict: Slytherin (much to the shock of the entire Great Hall)

    • Others:
      • Slytherin: Lily Moon, Draco Malfoy, Michael Corner
      • Ravenclaw: Tracey Davis, Daphne Greengrass, Pansy Parkinson, Sokaris
      • Gryffindor: Hermione Granger, Hannah Abbott, Susan Bones, Ronald Weasley
      • Hufflepuff: Neville Longbottom, Padma Patil, Terry Boot

    Dinner with the House of Snakes:

    • ​Sits next to Draco, who seems rather pleased, though as they discuss the Sorting, they realize each was treated differently
    • Lily Moon (or Liliana Spencer-Moon, if she is being formal), a striking green-eyed blonde seated beside her, introduces herself as the grand-daughter of Leonard Spencer-Moon, who was former Minister of Magic during the close of the Great Wizarding War. As part of the Spencer Family, she is, incidentally, related to Winston (Spencer-)Churchill and to the current Princess of Wales.
      • She has an unusual accent which she attributes to spending much of her time in the colonies (specifically New Zealand, Australia, and India)
      • Has traveled around the world with her grandfather after her parents died in the Wizarding War, and has seen many magical lands, traditions, and people
      • Is thoroughly unimpressed with British wizarding fare after tasting the cuisines served in different parts of the world, with a special weakness for curry and other spicy dishes. Hates pumpkin juice with a passion. Mentions a knowledge of the kitchens.
      • Curious about Iris' past, but not particularly fixated on her - assumes she might have just grown up hidden in the Muggle world to hide her from possible dangers

    • Lily is looking forward to meeting Lord Black, the famed Potions Master whose work on growing plants that naturally possess the effects of Wolfsbane and other potions, has made him a sensation all over Europe; When Draco reveals that Lord Black is, in actuality, his godfather, she offers to have him join her in paying her respects to Horace Slughorn, an old friend of the family (she has even brought his favorite snack - crystallized pineapple), in exchange for an introduction to Lord Black. Draco agrees.
    • On extracurriculars:
      • Draco mentions that his father wishes for him to take one of the classes taught by his family Home Economics with Lord Black, or Moon, Mood and Medicine with Andromeda Black) or, failing that, "How to Make Friends and Influence People" with Slughorn. Draco, however, would prefer to take whatever Iris is interested in...because it would be more fun to take a class with her, not that he liked her or anything. Reveals that he basically knows the Home Economics curriculum, since take Lord Black used him as a guinea pig to see what a student could and could not do. Thought his tune changed after Iris decided to take that class, and offer to test eat anything that she made for the class or help her out if she had any issue.
      • Iris will be taking Home Economics, since she likes to cook and has been doing it for years, and is curious what she can pick up about how British Wizards do it
      • Liliana is interested in more cerebral pursuits, and will be taking Moon, Mood and Medicine

    Current allies:

    • Liliana Spencer-Moon (Creation domain - bonus to Potions, Transfig, Herbology; taking Moon, Mood, and Medicine with Andromeda Black, a class which focuses on harmonizing with nature and exploring how time, moon position, stellar alignments, etc affect the potency of potions, rituals, and other spells)
    • Draco Malfoy (Destruction domain - bonus to DADA, Charms; Malus to Potions neutralized due to being "Lord Black's" godson)

    Current enemies:
    - Hermione Granger
    - Fred + George Weasley

    Extracurricular: Home Economics w/Lord Black

    Current Location: Slytherin Common Room

    Current Questions
    : What classes should Iris focus on? Which should she focus least energy on? What does she want to ask her housemates?

    Discuss either here or on the IRC.

    Also, Continue as Liliana or move back to Iris?
    Last edited by alfheimwanderer; June 18th, 2018 at 01:06 AM.
    "The palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise." - Thomas Paine

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