fiery_flamingo: stock: fruit (Stock: books)
[personal profile] fiery_flamingo
Title: Trophies
Characters: Argus Filch
Word Count: 438
Rating: PG
Summary: During the quiet moments, Argus pulls out his collection.
Warnings: Filch. Just Filch.
Author's Note: My submission for the third week of [ profile] darkarts_ldws. The prompts this week were Argus Filch and confiscated items. Not a winner this week but I live to write another day! \o/

During the quiet moments, Argus pulls out his collection.

He turns the lock on his office door to keep out unwelcome visitors that never come, checks the blinds that are never open, then wheels his chair to the grey file cabinet in the corner. It’s the only thing in the office without a speck of dust.

With measured breaths, he takes each item out, carefully. Reverently. He knows how to handle objects of power, unlike those brats that fling them about like they’re nothing, like they’re just toys. Argus knows.

First are the lesser objects: the Fanged Frisbees, the Screaming Yo-yos, the Ever-Bashing Boomerangs. Made for entertainment but still enchanted. Still something more than the mundane.

(More than him.)

Then come the greater objects: the cursed quills and the love potions. He shivers just to touch them, imagines what it was like to brew them, to put a bit of yourself into an inanimate object and make it spark.

(He’s chopped arrowroot east to west, plucked newt eyes fresh and stirred concoctions under the full moon but all that comes of it is a monstrous soup.)

Mrs. Norris arrives as he pulls out the last of his treasure. Locked doors are meaningless to her, as are the objects surrounding her human. She curls up beneath his chair, lamp-bright eyes lazily watching the ritual. It’s nothing she hasn’t seen before.

"Do you know the secret of it, Mrs. Norris?" he asks, turning his prize gently in his hands. "You would tell me if you did, wouldn’t you?"

As always, the cat is silent on the subject.

The item is modest in appearance. Just yellowed parchment to the untrained eye. Argus doesn’t even know what it does but he knows that there’s hidden power here, something beyond all his other trophies. If only he could puzzle it out, he knew he’d be so much closer to his goal.

He slides his fingers over the creases of the parchment, memorizing the ragged edges, the stains of misuse that it gained before he saved it like he saves them all from those ignorant, spoiled rodents.

(The only thing they’re good for is Mrs. Norris’ hunting.)

He sits, surrounded by his collection and holding his prize; surrounded by the power that everyone else takes for granted.

There are four-hundred and thirty seven items restricted on Hogwarts grounds. He wants at least one of all of them.

And then, one day, he’ll have enough. He’ll stroke and caress the magic out of every piece and it will become his own.

He’ll have magic.

(And then he’ll show them all what he can do.)

Date: 2011-10-26 03:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Filch is SO CREEPY and I LOVE IT. (Also, I feel kinda sad for him; no wonder he's bent)

*still fangirling*

Date: 2011-10-26 03:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I KNOW, RIGHT? Guy is about to go postal on everyone. Watch out for poison in the water supply.

Thankee for yer kind words. *basks*

Date: 2011-11-01 04:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Aww man, nice! I love your explanation for why he held onto the Marauder's Map. This is a wonderful tie in/explanation for a lot of his canon creepiness.

Date: 2011-11-01 04:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks! :D Dude is creepy and I thought it was odd that he held on to a blank bit of parchment for years. This is just me trying to fill in a blank (and trying not to get voted off the island).

Date: 2011-11-15 02:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I was just sent here by [ profile] straydog733 and this is AWESOME. It wouldn't have occurred to me to view his collection of confiscated items this way, but it fits so well. I've wanted to write Filch-fic for ages, but it won't come out of my head; I want to tell the story of how a squib got the caretaker job in the first place.

Thanks for sharing your wonderful character insight!

Date: 2011-11-15 03:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks so much! :D

Filch had never really been on my writing radar before this challenge so I had a lot to think about for this one. He became a really interesting character to me as I thought more about what drove a person to remain in a culture that doesn't value them. That he specifically works at the school where it's all about magic all the time rather than in a shop or something similar where he could maybe avoid blatant magic use says a lot, I think, about how much he wants to learn magic and be accepted. Except as the years go by, the correspondence courses don't work and he's out-stripped by eleven-year olds all the time so it turns bitter and desperate and he turns to alternate means of trying to get what he wants, sane or no.

Obviously, I've over-thought this whole scenario but I came out of it with a new appreciation for Filch. I'd really like to see a more fleshed out story from someone about him someday. *hint, hint* :D


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