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After Graduation > Ministry of Magic > Work? Who Works?


Title: Work? Who Works?
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Joshua Austen - August 5, 2009 06:23 AM (GMT)
Joshua didn't want to be at work. It was a Monday, still early in the day, and he didn't want to be anywhere near the office. As much work as he had to do, Joshua knew that it was a beautiful day outside. The dreariness of the Ministry was deflating and Joshua just wanted to leave, but he knew he couldn't. There was too much to do.

Sitting in his small office, Joshua continued working through the morning. When the clock in his office tolled nine o'clock, Joshua was surprised. This day was going nowhere. He had to get out of his office. Standing up, Joshua exited by his side door and out onto the floor of the Ministry.

He didn't know what he wanted to do, he was just happy to escape the boredom that was his office. He thought about going to the Atrium, but decided against it. He thought about wandering the halls, but figured people might think of him as an idiot or a fool - two things that Joshua was not.

Instead, Joshua made his way to the cafeteria. He wasn't hungry, but figured maybe a cup of coffee might perk him up. As he entered, it seemed that more people were bored out of their minds already this morning.

Grabbing a cup from the table, he poured his coffee and went to sit down. He took a sip of coffee and thought about his previous weekend and how much fun he had. He was now wishing it was Friday again. He sat for a few minutes before feeling bored again.

Joshua, being the extrovert that he was, grabbed the first person to walk by.

"Hi there," he said. "Care to avoid work a tad by having a chat?"

Artemius Baxby - August 6, 2009 09:06 PM (GMT)
It'd been a long night. He was getting used to the midnight shifts, and the extra money he got for working into the morning was quite lovely as well.

As it was, as always happens -- curiously enough -- when his time was up, he felt alive and refreshed. As it was, he decided that a visit with Arista was not unfounded. After bugging her for a few hours, she'd reluctantly shooed him off -- said something about having work to do.

After wandering aimlessly -- and purposely avoiding the Security office and all of Hinder's favourite haunts -- he'd found his way to the cafeteria. Numerous folks were wandering around as well - some of them wasting time, some of them hiding from their occupational obligations. He'd just acquired a nice, hot cup of coffee when he was caught by someone else that was inhabiting the building.

"Hi there," he said. "Care to avoid work a tad by having a chat?"

Artemius smirked. "Eh, sure. Why not?" He joined the fellow with a grin. "Name's Artemius," he added, holding out a hand. "Artemius Baxby."

Joshua Austen - August 7, 2009 05:14 AM (GMT)
"Eh, sure. Why not?" He joined the fellow with a grin. "Name's Artemius," he added, holding out a hand. "Artemius Baxby."

The man that Joshua grabbed seemed pleasant about chatting and sat himself down. He introduced himself and sat down. Joshua smiled. Josh looked the man over and saw that he was about the same age as him.

"Nice to meet you, Artemius," Josh said. "I'm Josh. Josh Austen."

He took a sip of his coffee.

"I'm sure I've seen you around here somewhere," Josh continued. "I tend to wander the halls quite a bit. Tell me, Artemius, what is it you do here at the Ministry?"

Before letting him answer, though, Josh continued. "I work in the Magical Education department. Assistant Director, actually."

He didn't feel he was boasting, just stating a fact. "I'm sorry, Artemius," he said with a chuckle. "I completely cut you off."

Artemius Baxby - August 7, 2009 03:33 PM (GMT)
"Nice to meet you, Artemius," Josh said. "I'm Josh. Josh Austen."

Artemius nodded. "Nice to meet you as well." He looked vaguely familiar, but then, he saw a lot of faces every day.

"I'm sure I've seen you around here somewhere," Josh continued. "I tend to wander the halls quite a bit. Tell me, Artemius, what is it you do here at the Ministry? I work in the Magical Education department. Assistant Director, actually." And then he seemed to notice that he'd not given Artemius time to answer. "I'm sorry, Artemius," he said with a chuckle. "I completely cut you off."

"Actually, don't be too surprised to hear I'm getting kind of used to it," he answered. "I'm a security guard. And, call me old fashioned, but I do find that common decency is becoming... well, less common. I think part of it is the busyness of life, that people don't stop to care anymore. It's kind of depressing actually." He chuckled. "But, I try not to let it get me down. So, Education? Do you... go over school schedules and stuff like that, or just sign paperwork all day?" Artemius grinned. He'd never had a "real" job -- one that required a desk and paperwork. Even Security work was show up, sign in, and then GUARD. Kind of boring, really, but also a bit of an adventure, especially when he was guarding and Auror's convention. Made you feel like the prison warden over a dragon.

Joshua Austen - August 8, 2009 04:56 AM (GMT)
"Actually, don't be too surprised to hear I'm getting kind of used to it,"

Getting used to being cut off? That was not a good thing. If there was one thing that his mother had ingrained in Josh's mind before she betrayed his father and left, it was manners.

"I'm a security guard. And, call me old fashioned, but I do find that common decency is becoming... well, less common. I think part of it is the busyness of life, that people don't stop to care anymore. It's kind of depressing actually."

As Artemius mentioned he was a security guard, Josh did a double take. He looked at the man again and realized that he was definitely built much stronger than Josh. Of course, a lot of men were built stronger than Josh. He was more of a lover, not a fighter. When it came to fights, he was more the one that egged others on, not fought. He also didn't want to admit that he never looked at the security guards as he entered the Ministry, nor when he left.

"But, I try not to let it get me down. So, Education? Do you... go over school schedules and stuff like that, or just sign paperwork all day?"

Josh, who had taken a sip of coffee to avoid making a fool out of himself, was caught off guard by the question.

"Oh no," he started. "I pretty much help determine the best curriculum for magicals when they attend places such as Hogwarts or other fine institutions."

Again, he didn't want to boast, but he had to admit something else.

"In fact," he continued. "While Durmstrung is not completely like Hogwarts, they have taken advanatage of some of our ideas in regards to curriculum. I'm rather pleased, if I do say so myself."

He paused again and realized that Artemius probably didn't want to listen to him ramble about his job, so he changed the subject.

"Well," he said. "Security, eh? I'm sure there's plenty here to keep an eye on. I hope you've been able to do more than stand in one place waiting for something to happen."

Artemius Baxby - August 8, 2009 10:50 PM (GMT)
"Oh no," he started. "I pretty much help determine the best curriculum for magicals when they attend places such as Hogwarts or other fine institutions. In fact, while Durmstrung is not completely like Hogwarts, they have taken advantage of some of our ideas in regards to curriculum. I'm rather pleased, if I do say so myself."

Artemius grinned. "Well, good for you. That means you're actually accomplishing something. That makes a world of difference." Lots of folks just punched the clock, droned on all day, and then got paid. Did absolutely nothing of value. What a waste.

Josh turned the conversation around. "Well," he said. "Security, eh? I'm sure there's plenty here to keep an eye on. I hope you've been able to do more than stand in one place waiting for something to happen."

Artemius laughed. "On a good day. For the most part, I just watch doors and memorise hallways, but I've had the occasional run-in with an Auror or disgruntled employee. Nothing dangerous, but something to keep you on your toes." Artemius reconsidered that. "Well, the aurors are dangerous, technically. Though I haven't managed to make one pissed off enough to hex me yet," he said with a chuckle. "But then again, I'm rarely a troublemaker myself." He reconsidered that. "Well. Not amongst strangers, at any rate." He gave a winning smile.

Joshua Austen - August 10, 2009 05:29 AM (GMT)
"Well, good for you. That means you're actually accomplishing something. That makes a world of difference."

Joshua nodded. He liked to think that he was making a difference by deciding what the students at Hogwarts would learn. He listened as Artemius spoke about his job and the lack of real excitement. Though, as Joshua thought about it, there had not been anything happening at the Ministry since the days of Harry Potter's battle with Voldemort.

"Well, the aurors are dangerous, technically. Though I haven't managed to make one pissed off enough to hex me yet,"

Joshua matched the chuckle. He had been in charge of proctoring the written exams for the Aurors and he knew several of them. He also knew just how dangerous they could be - especially when they were unable to finish an exam.

"But then again, I'm rarely a troublemaker myself." He reconsidered that. "Well. Not amongst strangers, at any rate."

Josh smiled back and sipped his coffee. "Oh, I highly recommend getting into trouble." He winked slightly. "In front of strangers is even more fun," Josh continued. "That way, you don't worry about ruining your reputation with your friends."

He laughed and finished his coffee. At the sight of an empty mug, however, he became sad. It was a death note - reminding him of the work that had yet to be done.

"Damn," Josh said. "I told myself to savor the coffee. To take my time. And now I'm stuck. Oh well."

He took his wand out and moved the coffee pot to his table so he could refill his mug for one more round of coffee.

"Much better."

Artemius Baxby - August 12, 2009 12:34 AM (GMT)
Josh smiled back and sipped his coffee. "Oh, I highly recommend getting into trouble." He winked slightly. "In front of strangers is even more fun," Josh continued. "That way, you don't worry about ruining your reputation with your friends."

Artemius grinned. "Oh, believe me, they know my reputation. I'm not shy about my mischeivousness." He grinned. "In fact, most of my family dreads holidays such as April the first and October thirty-first -- those are days where I reign havoc on the entire earth," he said with a whisper of drama as he gestured widely to the unknown. "It's just... strangers, I don't know if they have a sense of humour or not. It's kind of a killjoy if you get yelled at for a prank, because then you have to temper the mischeif with a healthy fear and respect for authority. Kind of disheartening, really." His eyes drooped with melancholy. Some people just didn't have a sense of humour.

His fellow found the bottom of his cup. "Damn."

Artemius smirked. "All gone?" he asked with a humouring smile.

"I told myself to savor the coffee," he answered. "To take my time. And now I'm stuck. Oh well." He took his wand out and moved the coffee pot to his table so he could refill his mug for one more round of coffee. "Ah... Much better."

Artemius laughed. "Well, when you said you were avoiding work you weren't kidding," he noted with a fond smile. "In a way, I envy you. I can't skip out on my job for a coffee break -- and my supervisor actually bans drinks while working, so I can't even bring it with me. Not that I really listen to that, but it's supposed to be some kind of security precaution -- not letting anyone knock out the guard and all. Because there are important things around here and all." Yeah, great security measures. More like a pain in the arse. "It makes things difficult when you do the midnight shift like I do, but since my supervisor sleeps at normal hours, he's not here to pester me about it," he joked with a grin. In all honesty, he kept it in mind, but he was doing nothing all day. The night shift head guard wasn't going to fault him some caffeine.

"As it is," he said, peering curiously into his cup. "Folks say this stuff stunts your growth. Mind, I'm 6'2", 6'3", so it's probably better that I don't grow anymore." He laughed. "I don't think I could have survived Hogwarts without coffee with my homework." He chuckled.

Joshua Austen - August 14, 2009 04:22 AM (GMT)
"In fact, most of my family dreads holidays such as April the first and October thirty-first -- those are days where I reign havoc on the entire earth,"

Josh chuckled about the comment. He was known to throw a prank or two on April Fool's day. Halloween was different, though. He had always liked the treats on that holiday more than the tricks themselves.

"Well, when you said you were avoiding work you weren't kidding,"

Josh nodded as he was filling his mug. Work today was one of those things that he didn't want to see. Josh wanted to see the outside and just wanted to run.

"In a way, I envy you. I can't skip out on my job for a coffee break -- and my supervisor actually bans drinks while working, so I can't even bring it with me. Not that I really listen to that, but it's supposed to be some kind of security precaution -- not letting anyone knock out the guard and all. Because there are important things around here and all."

Josh was lucky in that sense. Despite his responsibilities, he could sneak out of the office every now and then. Plus, with the Director getting older, he was out of the office more and more as well, delegating most of the work to Josh and the other Assistant Directors. This made it even easier for Josh to get away. And though the Director was in the office this morning, Josh still needed out. He needed to be away from the small box that was his office.

The grin on Artemius' face said what Josh was thinking - that there were a few times when Artie would manage to get a drink while on the job. Josh figured there wasn't a whole lot of security required during the middle of the night. Though, with everything that was in the Ministry, he could be wrong about that.

He mentioned the old wive's tale of coffee stunting growth and it seemed that it hadn't worked for him at all. It hadn't worked on him, either, as he was 6'1 and had been drinking coffee for quite a long time.

"I don't think I could have survived Hogwarts without coffee with my homework."

Joshua laughed. "Ah, yes," he started. "Hogwarts and their unending rolls of parchment." He paused a moment. "I used coffee to stay awake for things other than homework," he admitted. "I mean, I did do some homework, but I always found other things that I was interested in instead of homework."

Josh grinned and looked across at Artie. "What about you, Artie? Any extra curricular activities that might not have been sanctioned by the school? Don't worry. You've graduated. I can't revoke that."

Artemius Baxby - August 14, 2009 02:34 PM (GMT)
Joshua laughed. "Ah, yes," he started. "Hogwarts and their unending rolls of parchment. I used coffee to stay awake for things other than homework," he admitted. "I mean, I did do some homework, but I always found other things that I was interested in instead..."

"Hey, I hear ya there."

Josh grinned and looked across at Artie. "What about you, Artie? Any extra curricular activities that might not have been sanctioned by the school? Don't worry. You've graduated. I can't revoke that."

Artemius grinned. "Unsanctioned? Well, I did play on the Quidditch team, which took up a good bit of my free time, but I have been known to toss a bit of Itching Powder wherever I thought it was needed, sure." He grinned. "Actually, I remember once I snuck out of school to go see a Weird Sisters concert. Managed to sneak out of the castle with two housemates and then fly over there. Fortunately, I had a penchant for leaving on short notice on family business, but it was good times. I earned myself a rather dependable, if questionable, name then." He smirked. "And occasionally my girlfriend and I would slip out for late walks through school -- and by walks, I mean, walks to the nearest cubby guarded by a tapestry if you know what I mean." He gave a wink. "Made good use of the Room of Requirement, too." Artemius laughed.

Joshua Austen - August 18, 2009 05:16 AM (GMT)
"Unsanctioned? Well, I did play on the Quidditch team, which took up a good bit of my free time, but I have been known to toss a bit of Itching Powder wherever I thought it was needed, sure."

Joshua had always enjoyed Quidditch, but had never chosen to try out for the team. Even if he had, however, Josh felt that he was probably not Quidditch material. It was safe to say that Josh was more of a spectator than a player. And even that was spotty. He liked watching the matches, but would have preferred other activities instead. He did laugh, though, when Artie mentioned dropping the itching powder as necessary.

"Actually, I remember once I snuck out of school to go see a Weird Sisters concert. Managed to sneak out of the castle with two housemates and then fly over there. Fortunately, I had a penchant for leaving on short notice on family business, but it was good times. I earned myself a rather dependable, if questionable, name then."

The Weird Sisters. That brought back memories of the summer before his mother left his father. She had gotten him tickets to see the Weird Sisters in London at a small venue for a select group. Joshua loved that gift. Sadly, when his mother did leave, Josh gave up his passion for the Weird Sisters and found new music to enjoy that would not remind him of his mother.

"And occasionally my girlfriend and I would slip out for late walks through school -- and by walks, I mean, walks to the nearest cubby guarded by a tapestry if you know what I mean."

When Artie grinned, Josh knew exactly what he meant and nodded. He had done the same thing with several different girls, always choosing different spots for fear of running into one or more on a given night.

"Made good use of the Room of Requirement, too."

"Now there's something I never did," Joshua responded, laughing on his own. "I found a few secret passages, but I never thought to use the Room of Requirement."

Josh took one more drink from his mug and realized he was empty yet again. However, instead of conjuring the coffee for the second time, he realized that he should probably stop.

"Well, Artemius," Josh continued. "It seems you were quite to rogue at school." He paused and grinned. "Good for you," Josh said. "Good for you."

Sighing and pushing the mug to the other end of the table, Josh looked to his companion.

"I suppose I must get back to work. Papers to sign, children's future's to destroy. You know..." Joshua laughed and stood up, extending his hand. "Artemius, it was a pleasure speaking to you. If I see you on the way in or out from now on, I'll say hello."

Artemius Baxby - August 19, 2009 12:35 AM (GMT)
"Now there's something I never did," Joshua responded, laughing on his own. "I found a few secret passages, but I never thought to use the Room of Requirement."

"Are you kidding? I'm absolutely positive one of the tapestries in there would lead straight to the Kitchens -- the place is automatically stocked with candles and music and little things like that, and they make a date really easy to pull off." He grinned. "Kind of cheating, to use so much magic, but it's there, right?"

"Well, Artemius," Josh continued. "It seems you were quite to rogue at school." He paused and grinned. "Good for you," Josh said. "Good for you."

Artemius chuckled. "I must make it out to be a lot better than it was."

Josh smiled. "I suppose I must get back to work. Papers to sign, children's future's to destroy. You know..." Joshua laughed and stood up, extending his hand. "Artemius, it was a pleasure speaking to you. If I see you on the way in or out from now on, I'll say hello."

"I'd appreciate it," Artemius replied, grinning, and taking his hand. "Throw in a lesson on the zombie apocalypse for me, eh?" he joked with a wink.




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