Merlin's Academy for Excellence
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    Parker Emery
    Parker Emery
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    PostSubject: Buried Far Below [mature themes]   Buried Far Below [mature themes] EmptyMon Jan 12, 2015 2:22 am

    Belfast, Northern Ireland - Second Grade, Muggle School
    (content warning: bullying / mentions of violence / implied domestic abuse & sex)

    At recess, most kids spent their time running around on the field of dying grass or swinging on the rusted play set. While there were times Parker was invited to play a casual game or two of soccer with his classmates, most of his recesses were spent sitting with his back against the main building, picking at whatever random weeds happened to be growing through the pavement cracks. It wasn’t always the best of places to be, considering the older kids (several of which lived on Parker’s cul-de-sac) hung out just around the corner. There were no main windows on that side of the building, making it the perfect place for them to smoke their parents’ cigarettes, and push around the second and third graders.

    Parker happened to be one of those second graders, and his often close proximity (as well as small stature) made him one of their primary targets. The anti-social antics of the older boys didn’t stray too far from what would typically be expected. They would take Parker’s food, trip him in the halls, make him eat dirt, call him names, shove him into walls… among other things (though the whole physically beating him up thing didn’t really start until a few years later).

    Classes were usually fairly out of control. A poor school district meant poor teachers, which meant poorly behaved children. School wasn’t much a place Parker enjoyed. Besides the bullying and crappy teachers… it was just plain boring. At least when he was home he had the tv and back garden to play in. Ditching school wasn’t much of an issue once he realized he didn’t actually have to get on the bus in the morning. It wasn’t like either of his parents stood at the stop with him, hell, half the time they had already left for work by the time he woke up.

    After school got out (whether he actually went or not), he typically went over to his elderly neighbor’s house to watch movies until the evening when his father got home and made dinner. It was almost always just the two of them since Parker’s mother didn’t get home until late at night from her second job. The long silences that stretched between father and son were often awkward and strained, with only the clinking of utensils against plates to accompany them.

    “Why does ma hafta work so late all the time?” Parker asked meekly between small bites of blandly cooked food.

    “T’ help pay th’ bills. ‘S what keeps th’ lights ‘n water goin’.” His father’s gravelly, accented voice always laid heavy in the air. Always made everything seem so much more serious than it ought to be.

    “But why only her?”

    “Finish eatin’ yer greens, boy…”

    Parker sighed, stuffing the last few bites into his mouth. He left the plate at the table to start getting ready for bed.

    His sleep was almost always interrupted once his mother eventually got home. Sometimes just by muffled voices in the small hallway, sometimes by not-so-muffled yelling and door slamming, other times by moaning and creaking from their room.

    Weekends… weekends probably had to be the worst part of the week during the school year. Parker’s mother would often insist he go out and play with the other kids; he used to protest a lot more about disliking them, but knowing she never listened he’d stopped trying. He would end up digging around in the back garden or playing in the empty lot behind his neighbors house unless the boys were hopping fences. Sometimes he got stuck out on the front step, carefully watching the older boys play catch, or basketball, or whatever sport they’d made up that month.

    For a long time, Parker never really knew where he stood in the eyes of the other kids on his street. Most times they ignored him entirely, sometimes the ones closer to his age would invite him to play with them, other times they’d gang up with a few of the older kids to chase him around or throw rocks at him. He never knew what would set them off, or why, and that had to be one of the most frustrating things. Frustration that would build into anger. Anger that he had little control over.

    Parker stood in the nurse’s office; small, stuffy, and over-decorated. The nurse handed him an ice pack wrapped in a paper towel to hold over his temple, before walking into the other even smaller room with some gauze and another ice pack.

    Gingerly bringing the pack up to the large bump, he winced as pain pounded through his head. Looking down, he then frowned at the fresh holes torn in the knees of his jeans, blood staining the white fringes.

    The nurse walked back into the main room, taking a seat at her desk chair with her arms crossed. “So, what happened, Emery?”

    As it turned out, the boy in the other room, Andrew, had thrown a crayon right at Parker’s eye in the middle of class. Parker, at his wits end, chucked it right back at him. It missed, but his little act of defiance had upset Andrew and so he decided to enact revenge by violently shoving Parker off the swing during lunch. Once he stood back up, Parker grabbed the seat of the swing and threw it as hard as he could, hitting Andrew in the lip (splitting it) and hitting himself in the head with the chain as it lashed back.

    It was a ridiculous situation, and in his eyes, not all that serious. After all, he deserved it. Right?

    Last edited by Parker Emery on Fri Jan 23, 2015 4:06 pm; edited 4 times in total
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    PostSubject: Re: Buried Far Below [mature themes]   Buried Far Below [mature themes] EmptyWed Jan 14, 2015 2:07 am

    Belfast, Northern Ireland - 5th Grade, Weekend
    (content warning: domestic abuse / language / violence)

    Hugging a pillow tightly to his chest, Parker sat curled up on the worn fabric couch of the living room. His eyes were unfocused as he blankly stared at the television screen, trying to block out the shouting coming from his parents’ room by raising the volume several notches. For as long as he could remember his parents never got on well, but it was only in the past six months or so that things got so much worse. Where before it seemed that they just barely tolerated each other, Parker was convinced they now hated each other. They certainly told each other they did often enough.

    A loud crash resounded through the small house at the same time the bedroom door slammed open. Startled, Parker flinched and clutched the pillow in his arms even tighter, the scabs on his grazed knuckles cracking. At the same time, the television suddenly cut to static before shutting off (seemingly) on it’s own. Parker remained tensely frozen in place until he heard/felt the front door slam shut moments later.

    The air felt heavy and hard to breathe, and it was silent save for his mothers muffled sobs from the other room. He moved slowly from his position on the couch towards the now-open door, pillow still held in his arms. His mother was knelt beside the bed next to an overturned dresser, head lowered as she cried into her arms. He stood there in the doorway, watching her strangely for a few minutes until she started to gather herself - roughly wiping the smeared makeup from her reddened face and fixing her mussed up hair by brushing her fingers through. Only when she turned to push the dresser back up did he see the already forming bruise on her cheekbone.


    Early afternoon the next day, Parker’s father had still not returned.

    Parker sat on the curb out in front of his house, sick of hearing his mother yell about how much of a ‘fucking cheating cunt’ his father was. A couple of the younger kids played tag in the street, while the older ones were probably hanging out in the water run-off not too far from there. He quietly picked at the scabs on his hands and knees from the fight he’d gotten into the week prior as he let himself get lost in his thoughts… He wondered what his life would have been like if his parents separated years ago, if they weren’t so poor, if he could simply disappear? He just didn’t want the life he had - he didn’t want things to stay as they were.

    A sharp, broken-off piece of concrete came flying out from nowhere, nicking him on the leg as a voice called out, “ ‘Ey, faggot, whaddya think yer doin’ out here?”

    Parker’s head snapped up at the group of snickering middleschoolers. “Piss off, Robby,” he snapped at the eldest of the group - who, barely a moment later, leaned over to roughly grab the front of Parker’s shirt with both hands, over-stretching the collar. Parker dug his nails into Robby’s wrists, trying to yank himself away.

    “Wanna try that again?” the older boy threatened. In response, Parker spat right in his face.

    Disgusted, Robby violently shoved Parker back against the sidewalk, his head cracking against the pavement with a sickening sound. His vision went black, and the somewhat panicked voices around him suddenly sounded as if they were underwater.


    As painful as it was to get the staples to close the gash on his head, and as stupid as he thought he looked with a shaved head, everything else that had come out of the situation had been fairly positive. He got to miss a few days of school, his mother bought him a box of those little ice cream sandwiches, and that asshole Robby actually got in trouble for once. Even after he was fully healed, the other kids seemed to keep their distance for a while.

    And though it didn’t keep his parents from fighting, had assured him a spot on the older kids’ shit list, and gave him random migraines for several months after… he was thankful for brief reprieve.

    Last edited by Parker Emery on Fri Jan 23, 2015 4:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    PostSubject: Re: Buried Far Below [mature themes]   Buried Far Below [mature themes] EmptyFri Jan 23, 2015 4:03 pm

    Belfast, Northern Ireland - Summer
    (content warning: language)

    “WHAT’S THAT THING DOING IN HERE!?” Parker’s mother shrieked, swatting at the huge, grey owl that flapped its way from the kitchen into the living room. “PARKER!! GIT OUT HERE!”

    The almost eleven-year-old poked his head out from his room, his short but somehow unevenly grown hair ruffled and sticking up every which way from having just woken up. Sure it was the afternoon, but it was also summer. And summer meant sleeping in and getting into trouble. Which was why he was at first hesitant about leaving his room - thinking that his mother was going to start going off about something he couldn’t remember doing wrong.

    After another beating of wings, a low ‘hoot’ and a holler, Parker finally scrambled out of the room to see what the hell was going on. Nearing the living room, he came to a sudden halt, eyes widening.

    “Oh my Gosh--”

    “Park, help me shoo it out!! Don’t jus’ stand there!”

    “How’d it fly in?? It’s huge!” he shouted at the top of his lungs with a huge grin, utterly amazed at the size and beauty of the bird. He’d never been so close to an owl before, not even that one time he went to the city zoo in fourth grade. It was day time too, so for what reason could a wild owl be flying around at this time?

    Running over to fling open the front door, he refused to take his eyes off the bird. It’s eyes, large as they were, seemed so alert and aware. Like it knew something Parker didn’t. Captivated, he wasn’t able to make himself move to help his mother - though there ended up not being any need since the owl flew out on it’s own accord once the door was fully open. Parker walked out onto the front steps to watch as it flew away, high up into the sky. He stood there for several minutes until it was no more than a mere speck in the distance. All the while no sound came from inside the house - which was odd. His mother should have dragged him right back inside, yelling about the owl and the mess it left behind.

    Turning back inside and carefully closing the door behind him, Parker noticed the overturned lamp and claw marks gashed into the arm of the couch. He then saw his mother sitting at the small dining table, a letter and enveloped clutched tightly, almost crumpled, in her hands. He walked up next to her, resting his hand on the back of the chair she was sitting in.

    “What’s that, ma?” he asked, curiously turning his head to try to read the fancy scrawl over her shoulder.

    But she flinched away from him.


    She had demanded to know which of his friends was trying to pull a joke on them. Parker hadn’t been able to reply because… well, he didn’t have any friends. And it wasn’t like any of the kids on his street had such nice parchment, let alone writing, so why on Earth would she ask such a thing? What did the letter say?

    He felt his stomach drop, while his mind tried to jump to the worst of conclusions. Had his father gotten into an accident on the way to work? Did something happen to Gran? Were they finally losing the house? Did his mother have cancer? Did he have a sister he didn’t know about? Was he adopted? Unable to quell his racing thoughts, Parker took a step back from his mother, suddenly feeling like he was going to throw up.

    There was something about the way she looked at him before she got up from the table that he wouldn’t be able to shake for years. Something that evoked strong negative feelings that he wouldn’t fully understand until years later. Some mix of fear, disgust, anger - that he knew no loving mother should feel towards her child.

    “You demon from Hell!!” She would hiss to the fifteen-year-old, lanky and long-haired boy. “O, God have mercy on me poor son’s soul. May he not be lost to sin, may he find Your light.”

    But that day she just crumpled the off-white parchment in her small hands and locked herself in her bedroom. And Parker just crawled back into bed, crippled with a sense of dread he couldn’t fully comprehend.


    He was woken at three in the morning. Yelling, like usual.

    Except not.

    There was something hysterical in his mother’s voice that startled him terribly. That made him sit upright in bed for several minutes before getting up to place his ear against the door so he might actually hear what was being said.

    “Yer stepfather was crazy though, Sean. Everyone knew that!!”

    “So it’s jus’ a coincidence, huh? What kinda fuckin’ joke would this be? Th' owl n’ all?”

    “I don’t know! But magic?! Are ya really gonna take this paper seriously?!”

    Parker sat back from the door, confused. Why were they talking about Grandpa Ash? They never talked about him, especially since he died last year… Not even Gran talked about him anymore. Parker leaned back against his dresser, staring forward at the closed door.

    “Stop cryin’ Johanna; christ, that’s not gonna do anythin’ to help!”

    “So what’re we supposed to do?! Just ship ‘im off to Scotland??”

    “Exactly-- ”
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    PostSubject: Re: Buried Far Below [mature themes]   Buried Far Below [mature themes] EmptyWed Feb 11, 2015 8:24 pm

    Hogwarts Castle, Black Lake - First Year
    (content warning: mentions of death / near death experience)

    Parker knew he wasn’t allowed to be out of the castle this late, he knew he’d get into loads of trouble if caught sneaking off to the lake in particular. They had been warned to stay away from it, especially as first years. However, because the reasons as to why were never fully explained to him, he didn’t think too much of it. Growing up in the environment that he did, rules put in place without reason or clear consequence weren’t rules worth following.

    The view of the lake was beautiful enough from under water as could be seen from the tall windows in the Slytherin common room, but there were always a bunch of people crowded around to watch creatures swim by. So Parker, not close to anyone else in his house, wanted to get out and see what the lake was like from above. The still, quiet darkness was arguably more peaceful here than at home he thought while sitting on one of the dead logs that washed up on the shore ages ago.

    Bright moonlight washed over him, making him feel a little bit less alone. He wasn't homesick like most other first years, in fact, it seemed safe to say he felt quite the opposite - though the idea of that served to make his usual loneliness feel all the worse.

    Here he was in this grand, beautiful, magical place and nothing that great had come from it yet. No parents that cared he was gone, no friends, no hilariously quirky professors, no adventures. Just a lot of sitting alone. Daydreaming. Here he hoped to have that missing chunk in his chest filled with a sense of finally belonging, but it only felt bigger. Especially after that group of Gryffindors he'd met on the train (and so foolishly thought he befriended) booed him after getting sorted into Slytherin.

    Nothing was going to change, was it?

    Parker sighed as he leaned over to untie his shoes, slip off his socks, and roll up his pant legs. He just wanted to dip his feet in. He didn't know if anything truly dangerous resided in the waters, but figured if they did they certainly weren't going to be so shallow, so he should be safe. Right? He set his socks and shoes atop the log and stood, taking the few steps down the rocky shore until his feet were barely in the icy-cold, very dark water. Well, it wasn't named the Black Lake for nothing, he mused to himself.

    A strong chill travelled through his whole body, up from the soles of his bare feet up to the tips of his fingers. He pushed muddy pebbles aside with his toes as he moved ankle-deep and then leaned over to roll up the cuffs of his pants to his knees, wanting to wade in a little further. Back home there wasn’t cold, clean bodies of water like this. It was nice, and Parker hoped that he could stay out here a bit longer without anybody realizing he was gone. Why would they anyways, it’s not like he had any friends yet.

    Mid-calf into the dark water, he stretched his arms above his head and took in the moonlight. Smaller, mossy plants tickled around his ankles. But for a brief moment he thought he felt something more solid and tensed up. He crossed his arms across his chest, shivering as he stared down at the water, obviously unable to make out anything under the surface. Parker was suddenly hit by the feeling that he needed to get out of the water. Now. Whether or not there was anything actually in the water didn’t matter.

    But just as he turned to take the first step back towards the shore, something coiled tightly around his ankle and partway up his calf. He panicked, screamed, tried to tug away. And it tugged back harder, pulling his foot out from under him and tripping him forwards with a loud splash.

    Parker cried out again, trying desperately to dig his small hands into the muddy, slick ground and pull away.

    A second, then third, solid mass wrapped around the same ankle and tugged again, pulling him further out. Rocks sliced up his hands and arms. He struggled and tried to kick off the creature with his other foot but choked on the dark, moonlit water as he was taken under.


    When Parker awoke nestled in white sheets surrounded by white cloth walls, he was certain he was dead.

    His body hurt too much for that to be the case though. His Ma had told him when he was much, much younger that when Grandpa died he didn’t feel any pain anymore, he was at peace. Parker certainly didn’t feel very peaceful. In fact, he was near panic when a nurse pushed aside the privacy curtains and entered his field of vision. Though her tone was soothing, he couldn’t quite make out the exact words. Everything sounded muffled, like he was wearing earplugs.

    She held out a note to him that asked if he could hear.

    Clutching the bedsheets with trembling fists, he shook his head to indicate that he couldn’t. Not but a moment later she pulled out her wand, mumbled a spell, and his ears popped loudly and painfully. He yelped and tears pricked his eyes as she went on to calmly explain that the water pressure must have popped his ear drums. Water… pressure?

    Suddenly, flashes of memory started coming back to him. The bottom of the lake suddenly dropping off into an even darker abyss. The slight sting as water entered through his nose and mouth while his mind raced with sheer terror. An immense pressure on his chest, back, and head as all his senses faded out.

    Cue: panic attack.


    Parker didn’t know how long he spent recuperating in the hospital wing, but it felt like ages. He had few visitors, most of them just classmates that were told to bring him classwork and then this random blond girl that was only ever there when he was napping (or pretending to, which was how he discovered her).

    Even after officially getting out, he had to make frequent visits back for aftercare.

    For a long time he didn’t get an explanation for how he was saved, or who exactly saved him. All he was told was how lucky he was, what a miracle it was that he had been saved. How tragic it would have been otherwise if that nasty grindylow had actually got him.

    All he was left with was a million questions and some really nasty scars.
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    PostSubject: Re: Buried Far Below [mature themes]   Buried Far Below [mature themes] EmptySat Apr 25, 2015 9:10 pm

    Hogwarts Castle, Slytherin Dorms - Third Year
    (content warning: suicidal ideation and implied self-harm)

    Parker was curled up under his blankets, covering his head and pretending to still be asleep while his roommates got ready for their classes. They didn’t bother trying to be quiet for him since none of them ever gave the impression of liking Parker nor did he like them. There was always a thick tension that permeated the room whenever he was there with any of them, and there were few places he felt less welcome on campus than his own dorm room. Despite how much he had been sleeping lately, exhaustion wracked his body and dread weighed him down into the mattress. The last thing he wanted was to face the day. He didn’t have the energy or willpower to keep trying to hold himself together. The days were getting harder to cope with. Hoping his roommates would just leave for class already, he listened in on them talking about him as if he wasn’t even there.

    “Is Emery really still sleeping?”

    “Yeah, I’ve barely seen him outta bed for pretty much the whole week.”

    “Should we tell the nurse or something? Maybe he’s sick.”

    “Nah, he’s just a ditch. Don’t worry about it.”

    “You sure?”

    “Yeah, who cares anyway. Just leave him and come on, we’ll be late if we don’t hurry up.”

    As much as he wanted not to care, the pain that settled in Parker’s chest was indescribable. Waiting for them to finally leave before letting himself cry, he had bitten down on his lip so hard he tasted blood. Why did everyone seem to hate him so much? Why did he let it affect him so badly? Why did nothing ever seem to change?

    It must just be him. What other explanation could there be?

    Parker stayed curled up in his blankets for the rest of the morning, unable to force himself back asleep. It was all he wanted to do. And with dreamless sleep draught, it was able to be the ultimate escape. He didn’t have to deal with the bullies, the loneliness, the whispered comments, the unsettling discomfort of existing in his own skin… none of it. He didn’t want to care anymore. He didn’t want to keep feeling so awful all the time. God, what he wouldn’t give for it to just end.

    He’d be lying if he said he never thought about ways for that to happen.

    A cold shower did nothing to help. Staring at his reflection in the bathroom mirror as he dried off only made his skin crawl. He hated looking at the self-inflicted injuries over his upper arms, shoulders, and chest that stung an angry red colour or were scabbed over in various stages of healing. Why did he ever start? Why did he continue when he knew it made him physically ill with guilt and regret later on? He redressed slowly and went back to bed before any of his roommates returned.

    He would have let the next day pass in a similar manner, not caring if he missed classes, but he was forced to go see the headmistress. He knew it would be about all his recent absences and he really didn’t know what he would say to her since he had no excuses. He was already burning with shame when he got the letter, and it only got worse and more debilitating the closer he got to her office. He expected to get scolded and given detention and blamed like he always had been over the years.

    Instead, as he sat in the chair across from her desk tugging at the edges of his sleeves in nervousness, she offered him kind and gentle words of comfort. He didn’t know how long he stayed in there talking and crying to her about what was going on, but she sat there and listened with the utmost attention and Parker had never felt so genuinely cared for by an adult. She helped him come up with a plan to get him back to pace with his classes and even arranged for him to switch dorm rooms over the weekend so he was in a space he could be more comfortable.

    It wasn’t easy, perhaps more annoying than anything, to have expectations placed upon him. He wasn’t used to it… an adult thinking he was capable and responsible. In his shitty little muggle school, the importance was placed on staying out of trouble and if you could do that they didn’t even care if you put effort into your schoolwork. But hell, Parker couldn’t even follow through with the staying out of trouble part. He never was made to think he possessed the ability to do well in school, no one ever made him think there was anything of value or safety in it either.

    It was weird how having just one adult believe in him made him reconsider so much. He felt that if he could try he might actually feel better, he might be able to impress and make the headmistress proud. Stand out in a positive light for once. He wanted to show her that he really could do it… even with the bullying, even with his inability to cope some days, even when everything else seemed to be against him.


    He didn’t expect to actually make friends, at the library no less. But kids of all houses and years and backgrounds had their little study groups, intermingling and whatnot. They didn’t avoid Parker like so many others did. Though some knew who he was through other kids involved in his bullying, others knew nothing. It was always easier talking to them. His new roommates were also less cruel than the others, those others he later found out had been mocking and calling him a mudblood behind his back all along...

    And though Parker couldn’t exactly say that the rest of the school year went by easier than the first half, he at least made it though. With friends. A plan. With a vague idea of a possible future for him.

    He never thought that would have been possible.

    The only thing that really threatened the vague stability that he’d built up for himself over the past couple months was the fast approaching summer. He didn’t even want to think about having to go home. He didn’t want to go back to the constant fighting between his parents, infrequent meals, no friends, no magic, no sense of himself. He didn't want to deal with that hell.

    When the summer actually came around... it was worse than he originally imagined.
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