Ambrose was rendered momentarily speechless by the revelation. He had been prepared to come back with a quip about how there were things about him that she was better off not knowing, but instead he was staring with his mouth slightly open.
“Why on earth would you do that?” He asked finally.
"Did you know my father is the Head of the Magical Law Enforcement Department in Italy?" she asked him in return. "The Hitwizard Demolitions Specialists there have mentioned you. Maverick wasn't around at that time, I don't think, or else he hadn't yet made himself known. I used to hang around the offices at times, just to hear the stories, really. And when I came here, it seemed you were an enigma even among those you saw daily. Surely you can understand how that would be baffling to me. I seek attention at every turn and here you are, man of mystery and reputation. I wanted to see what you looked like."
Ambrose was completely thrown off now. He thought she had been trying to antagonize her, and now she was openly complimenting him. "Well," he said flatly. "You've seen me now. Am I all you ever dreamed of?" He couldn't imagine someone taking such an interest in him. He wondered what kinds of things her father's colleagues had said about him. He wondered why she didn't work at the Ministry in Italy, if her father was so high-ranking there. Against all odds, Ambrose wanted to hear more from Kerrigan.
Kerrigan let out a little laugh at his question, pure amusement dancing in her expressive eyes. "Oh, more." She didn't feel the need to inform him she had never dreamt of him - his tone implied that he already knew as much. "You're extremely original and I quite like your sense of fashion. Very sharp," she commended seriously.
“Well.” Ambrose was still flabbergasted by the situation. He had always assumed Kerrigan only came to their office to flirt with Maverick, but apparently that had simply been a bonus. “Thank you.” He couldn’t quite meet her eyes while he said it, because he actually meant it. Sincerity with near-strangers was not a common occurrence for Ambrose.
“So why don’t you work at the Ministry in Italy, with your father?” He asked, desperate to change the subject.
In the years she had worked at the Ministry, not one person had ever wondered why she was here and not in Italy. Kerrigan was quiet, eyes on her coffee as she idly toyed with the sleeve using a fingertip. "Let's just say..." she drew out, thinking of a discreet enough way to put it. "I disgraced my family's honor...and the Italians aren't very forgiving...and have long memories."
One of the benefits of living abroad was that British purebloods didn't keep up with Italian hierarchy and gossip. No one here would know that she had soiled a perfectly good match and cast aspersions on her family.
Ambrose hadn’t expected her answer to be so serious. Pureblood politics were complicated everywhere, and apparently Italy was no exception. He had changed the subject to make himself more comfortable, but unfortunately hadn’t been successful. This topic was uncomfortable too.
“Ah, well,” he said lightly. “I’m sure if my father had lived much longer I would have found a way to dishonor him.”
Kerrigan offered him a little smile, wanting to lighten the mood once again. "It's whatever," she shrugged. "I just got my brother thrown into prison but he's out now. Old witches have long memories, I guess." To her, the matter should have been forgiven the moment her brother's time had been served. He wasn't hurting for his stint, anyway, as most found his behavior utterly justified.
"Yes," Kerrigan said quietly. Azkaban was the only fortress in the world that could hold dangerous witches and wizards, so her brother had been sent there for his crimes. "He didn't deserve to go there," she lifted a fierce gaze to Ambrose, evidence that she was very used to defending his character to people who had never met him and didn't even know the story. "Even a short imprisonment can make someone go mad. He was only protecting me."
Ambrose nodded. If Kerrigan said her brother didn't deserve to go to Azkaban, he believed it. Crispin had definitely deserved it. Ambrose hadn't had anything to do with his imprisonment, of course, but he thought perhaps Kerrigan was less responsible for her brother's than she thought. "Is he still there?"
Kerrigan's expression cleared at his question and she offered a smile. "No, thank Merlin," she told him. "We live in London....me and two of my brothers. Severo works at the Ministry, as well, but Sebastiano is an architect. He got a bit soured for the Ministry, obviously, but he's still incredibly sharp and has always loved maths and whatnot."
Ambrose nodded. "That's nice." He meant it, even if it sounded like a meaningless pleasantry. It seemed like that would all be nice for her. For Ambrose, he couldn't imagine living with another person. Especially not his two brothers. Unsure of what to say next, if anything, he took a sip of his coffee.
"Well, hello gorgeous," Maverick popped his head into the doorway, grinning at Kerrigan, then leaned himself there instead. "What are you two chatting about, then?" He lifted his brows toward Ambrose, not disguising his surprise and amusement to find his partner chatting up a girl.
Ambrose rolled his eyes. Maverick's cavalier attitude was what had gotten him into this in the first place, and here he was being as casual as ever with the secretary. With Kerrigan. The talk with her hadn't been all bad, really. "We were chatting about you, Maverick," he said drily. "Extolling your virtues, at length. Truly the most interesting topic of conversation."
Teegan: For anyone not on the discord, the group thread has been started in the "Other Locations" board
May 23, 2018 2:17:56 GMT -5
Teegan: A year, a month, and three days since the last shout. Still love you all! Hope we could someday find some free time in our crazy lives to get back here. Love this place!
Jun 26, 2019 19:45:26 GMT -5