Chapter 1 : Noises, Nifflers and Newbies
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In the muggle world, to become a doctor, you need 7 years at medical school and plenty of years after that, shadowing other doctors to gain experience and knowledge, before you are even let near a patient, let alone being allowed to treat them.
In the Wizarding world, all you needed was 6 months training and an extensive background in every kind of magical disaster that could ever occur.
In short, you have to be a deranged walking accident.
“Mrs Parsons is back again, her chicken squawks are really starting to get on my nerves, it’s the fifth time this month,” I sighed, slamming down her file to Madeleine the receptionist.
“What did you do?” Adam, a fellow healer asked, eating a toasted bagel and simultaneously grabbing a file of the shelf. Where he got the bagel in London within a 5 minute lunch break I don’t know. Apparation probably had a lot to do with it, as well as the fake police badge he carried around in his pocket.
“What every good healer does, upped her dosage of calming potion to make her fall asleep. Not that that stops the bloody chicken noises,”
“Don’t be so grumpy,” Madeleine said, prodding me in the arm. “It’s ruining the aura of what’s supposed to be a happy working place,”
“Happy? Have you heard Mrs Parsons?”
“Hey, it’s not as bad as Mr Williams’ chronic farting,” I winced. No one wants to experience that. Poor Adam. “Besides, we have this terms newbies coming in today, should be fun,” I laughed as he rubbed his hands in anticipation, a look of mischief upon his features.
“Well, don’t mess them up to badly Adam Spring-roll,”
“Go back to the chicken lady Lucy Weasel,”
If the jab at my name wasn’t enough, the condescending pat on the head irritated me to high heaven. Or should that be low hell?
“Has anyone seen Jess? Her shift started an hour ago and now instead of leaving, I’m covering for her,” Frankie groaned, holding a niffler in his hands.
“She called in sick, which would’ve worked, had this not been a hospital. But this is St Mungo’s and we could’ve given her a pepper up potion to go, if there was an actual cold to cure. She’s skiving,” Madeleine answered without looking up from her computer that she was engrossed in.
“Frankie, why do you have a niffler in your hands?” We might have been a motley crew of healers (And the odd receptionist) with brains full to the brim with stupidity, chaos and insanity, but this was highly irregular.
“The witch from the Magical Menagerie gave it to me as a thank you for healing her. Only good thing that ever came out of covering for a truant,”
“Frankie, mate, that niffler is going to ravage your flat, especially with all your watches lying around,” Adam inputted to which Frankie groaned louder in frustration. Guess he’s forgotten his 176 piece silver pocket watch collection that he started when he was 12.
“Aw well, guess I’ll take him off your hands,” The Niffler purred in content for the few seconds I held him in my arms before Adam whipped him away from me. At least I think it was a him... I couldn’t really discern what gender the niffler was.
“With your jewellery?” Adam rolled his eyes. “Nah, he’ll come home with me, won’t you boy? Who’s a good boy, who’s a good- Hey!”
“You have all that expensive silverware, I eat off paper plates with plastic cutlery, he should come home with me,”
“But the jewellery-” Adam moaned.
“Can easily be put into a draw or, I could give it to Molly next time I see her, it’s cheap tat anyways, makes me break out in rashes,”
“Why’d you buy it then?” Frankie asked stumped. Madeleine let out a derisive snort whilst tapping away at the keyboard. That woman has the fastest fingers ever known to man, she could do anything, drink coffee, have a conversation, shout at a patient, and still pump out 100 words per minute. I could barely do 20. Pathetic.
“Camden Market,” We said simultaneously. The boys looked even more confounded than before.
“Camden Market is the place to go, they have literally everything and most pieces are one-off items that you can’t get anywhere else. I got my piercings and tattoo done there, very cheap,”
“You’re lucky you didn’t catch HIV or something from those needles,” Madeleine shuddered. The grungiest place she’d ever been was the Leaky Cauldron, so Camden Market was a few miles south of her street.
“Come off it, I’m a witch, I’m still alive and kicking,”
“Barely,” she muttered under her breath as Jess swept inside, cheeks flushed pink from the biting cold outside. It was England after all.
“It’s a miracle! I’m cured!” She sung in a high operatic voice that might have shattered a few windows had it been a few hertz higher. Patients in the waiting room clutched their ears and one small boy whimpered like a kicked dog.
“Brilliant, now take your soprano ass upstairs whilst I get out of here,” Frankie threw his overcoat and stethoscope behind Madeleine’s counter- she squealed indignantly but she didn’t make that much of an effort, Frankie escaping was a force you don’t want to reckon with- and flapped his way through the entrance.
Yes, Frankie flaps his arms like a bird sometimes, no healer could ever correctly diagnose his case. It ranges from Birdnomia to Dodoitus.
A shrill tinny sound emitted from Madeleine’s computer, stopping her writing dead in her tracks.
“The interns are arriving in 5 minutes, whose turn is it this time?”
Every term, St Mungo’s admits a new cohort of healers who passed their 6 months at the Ministry. Every term, a healer is nominated to take the new healers on a tour of all the departments before they decide on their discipline. Leading the tour was not a desirable job and was always shunted on to junior healers, something we resented greatly, but would come to love once we were senior healers.
Jess and Adam looked at me intently whilst Madeleine went back to typing.
“What?” I squeaked. I really did not want to lead the tour.
“It’s your turn Lucy,” Jess threatened.
“Yes, you said you’d do the autumn tour if we bought your round, that was last Saturday night, remember?”
Curse my drunken state, craving for more alcohol and broke purse to hell and back. Then back to hell again.
“Fine,” I sighed heavily. Next time the tour came around, I wouldn’t drink a single drop.
The fireplace whooshed green, flames licking the sides and out came 1,2,9,14,27- way too many new healers to count.
But I had more pressing issues at the front of my mind rather than counting the newbies, more important even, than the fact that the niffler in my arms was getting dangerously close to my necklace.
Because right at the front of the group was a blonde I vowed to forget.
Scorpius Malfoy’s grey eyes latched onto mine and I blushed profusely.
How the heck was I expected to last 10 seconds, let alone a whole tour, let alone the prospect of being colleagues, with him?
I was screwed.
A/N: I felt compelled to do a St Mungo’s fic but the Lucy/Scorpius idea only came to me when I was writing it. Leave your thoughts in that little grey box below, it’s lonely and empty ;)