Slytherin House had a reputation for darkness, but that wasn’t how Slytherin saw it. They had a reputation for Dark Magic, for ruthless ambition, for Machiavellian politics, for draconian measures and ancient privilege. That was the popular image of Slytherin House, and indeed, there was some truth to it; when Gryffindor won a Quidditch match and the parents who had come to watch trotted down to the Three Broomsticks, Madame Rosmerta would crack a cask of ale and pour beer until dawn, but Slytherin parents tended to be people who would ask for drinks with funny names and complicated recipes. Slytherin House, people said, was the House of hated Heads Dolores Umbridge and Phineas Nigellus, of the entire Malfoy clan (and oh, you heard such whispers about them) and of course of Lord Voldemort himself.
But to hear Slytherins tell it, they were a House that longed to do great things. Ambition was not evil and cunning was not always base. The great Merlin, after all, champion of Muggle rights, had been a Slytherin, and the hero Severus Snape, and young Draco Malfoy, who had spent the years since the war doing charity and good works (as well he might, muttered some, for many remembered what his family had done and resentment ran deep). Their House was one that understood the nature of power and the need to possess or appease it. “Know that in all times there will be a Caesar,” ran the proverb; “Pay him his due.”
That was what it boiled down to, really. Power. Getting it, keeping it, using it. The Slytherins knew to go wherever the power was, lest it be turned against them, and to guard what power they had most jealously. Whatever the virtues of courage, wit or loyalty, without power behind them, they were stranded and impotent. The other Houses saw Slytherins as old blood and old money, entrenched in privilege, content to sit around and think themselves fine, but in a House known for its ambition, anyone who lowered the tone or didn’t pull their weight was sharply dealt with; if you weren’t intent on rising to the top, you were a stepping-stone. And so Slytherin House sought power, power that had created the Death Eaters and the Chamber of Secrets, true, but also power that had created the Order of Merlin, upheld the Ministry and brought down tyrants. As befitted their genteel, cunning image, they more often did battle with whispers and rumour, but sometimes an obstacle that could not be moved aside had to be hexed into rubble.
To that end was the Pearl Cup Society founded. Established sometime in the eighteenth century by an enterprising young lady known to legend only as Miss Sanderson, this was a secret society of Slytherin students - originally female-only, but eventually opening its doors to male students - in the manner of the odd secret clubs and societies that often popped up in British public schools. It was an exclusive study group open to any enterprising Slytherin student who managed to learn of its existence, although any who joined would be hexed to secrecy by use of the Society’s enchanted heirloom, the eponymous Pearl Cup, and any who didn’t would be hexed to secrecy anyway.
They studied the Dark Arts. At the time of their founding, such magic was being slowly excised from the Hogwarts curriculum; this was the Age of Enlightenment, and spells that could boil a man’s brain in its own juices and accelerate the progress of virulent disease running rampant through enemy villages were falling out of favour. A good understanding and healthy respect for Dark magic was being replaced by fearful ignorance: the Dark Arts were no longer a legitimate path to power or a means of self-defence, they were something to be fought against.
Miss Sanderson, so the legend went, knew that even if the teachers barred the Dark Arts from their classrooms, Hogwarts would not always be brightly-lit and free of shadows. The splendid magic employed by those wizards that society deemed Dark was as formless and changeable as it was terrible; the Dark Arts would take endless permutations as they were forced to avoid notice and find new ways to invade. Miss Sanderson knew that Hogwarts would one day play host to the Dark Arts once more, and she would not see Slytherin House or Hogwarts School suffer for the ignorance forced upon the school.
And so the Pearl Cup Society trickled down the years, from generation to generation of schoolchildren poring over bloodstained texts, infiltrating the Restricted Section, donating copies of banned books to the Society’s collection. They took great pains to conceal themselves; membership never exceeded a dozen, and at one point shrank to just two, but they always found someone to whom they could pass the chalice. The Heads of Slytherin House sometimes knew of the Society if they had been members, but most did not; after all, most Slytherins were not members, and in any case, the Heads of House, too, had been hexed to secrecy.
The Pearl Cup Society never had any trouble with its first goal, which was to amass and guard as much knowledge as it could about the Dark Arts. Its second only ever came to the fore when darkness stalked the halls and preyed upon the students, and only ever with a fight. When the Chamber of Secrets was opened in 1943, the then-Head of the Society Layla Shafiq was forced to contend fiercely against a significant minority led by Tom Riddle for warding the main classrooms and corridors around the House dormitories with Dark magic against magical attacks. In the end, Layla - whose family had appeared in the Pure-Blood Directory, don’t you know - won out, and each member of the Society donated some blood for the proper spells to be written on the ancient stone when the moon was in the proper quarter of the sky. During the first wizarding war, it was the Pearl Cup Society who had, at the urging of sixth-year Andromeda Black, clandestinely and extremely reluctantly approached the Prefects of other Houses about starting some sort of after-hours patrol - after all, when scarcely a week went by without some kind of attack on Hogwarts by Dark creatures, it didn’t do to have first-years wandering about after dark.
Their society’s loyalties were most sorely tested by the second wizarding war. Headed by Theodore Nott in the year the Carrows stalked the halls and Severus Snape sat in the Headmaster’s chair under the long shadow of the Dark Lord, the Pearl Cup Society was almost destroyed by a Vincent Crabbe and a group of other members who had relatives among the Death Eaters. These were dark times, they argued in the Society meeting room, warded for secrecy; Slytherin times. This was their chance to rise up and be masters of the school, taking their place at immortality’s right hand. Theodore had been hard put to shut them down, especially when quick hands went for wands and things like “blood-traitor” were being screamed across the chamber. In the end, it was only the oaths they had drunk from the Pearl Cup that saved them, and Crabbe’s faction simply ceased showing up and Theodore set the remainder to performing duties to the school.
In that Darkest of years, the Pearl Cup Society’s knowledge was spread in morsels and trickles throughout Hogwarts, never all at once and never too much to one person, but enough so that the students - frightened and angry enough that divisions of House had begun to blur - would spread it among themselves. First-years in trouble would hear rumours that spells could be cast with blood if you didn’t have a wand, and whisper alohomora when their wrists bled under their manacles in detention. Books from the Restricted Section with titles like Methods and Properties of Blood Magic and The Dark Duellists: A History would be left carelessly on library desks, bookmarked to useful sections. A slow but steady stream of protective amulets filtered into the school from the Society’s lockboxes, things containing human knucklebones and coins stolen from widows, the Darkest sort of magic but far more effective than Gurdyroot charms and sprigs of rue tied with yellow ribbon. Those who spoke openly against the Carrows would recall hearing somewhere that the effects of the Cruciatius Curse could be softened by wearing red or an inside-out garment. Spells of concealment, protection and vicious retribution became almost a trade among the students, whether as a means for pulling cruel pranks on their new Headmaster and the Carrows as a form of rebellion, or to fight the vicious bullies the Carrows engaged to be their enforcers among the students, or even as a method of concealment when recruiting for Dumbledore’s Army. Theodore Nott and the Pearl Cup Society conducted a campaign of covert information-trafficking over a territory that their foes were not even aware was under dispute.
This was their purpose in amassing power. This was what Miss Sanderson had intended. Not power for its own sake, to sit bleating at the feet of Dark tyrants like dogs begging for crumbs at their master’s table, but the power to be great, the power to resist compulsion and fight Dark against Dark, power to strike, as befitted a serpent, at the heel of those who would tread on Slytherin House and Hogwarts School.
(written and submitted by magical-flying-moron, formerly lerocherdemontmartre, who has my thanks for dreaming up some incredible submissions, always ready to extend and/or subvert the canon in innovative and ingenious ways.)
Ethan Couch killed four people after losing control of his speeding pickup truck while driving drunk. His defense, entitled “affluenza”, blamed his wealthy parents for never teaching him about ‘consequences’.
Couch and seven of his friends stole alcohol from Walmart and all got into his vehicle. The teen struck and killed four pedestrians while going 70 miles per hour in a 40 zone, his BAC was .24, and he also had valium in his system. According to reports the teen was belligerent on the scene and kept saying he was “outta here.”
One of his passengers remains in the hospital with severe brain damage, and nine other bystanders were also injured in the accident.
Prosecutors were seeking a sentence of twenty years, but the judge agreed with the defense lawyers claims that the boy suffered from “affluenza”, an affliction caused by his parents who never taught him the value of consequences.
Prior to sentencing, a psychologist called by the defense, Dr. G. Dick Miller, testified that Couch’s life could be salvaged with one to two years’ treatment and no contact with his parents.
Miller said Couch got whatever he wanted. As an example, Miller said Couch’s parents gave no punishment after police ticketed the then-15-year-old when he was found in a parked pickup with a passed out, undressed, 14-year-old girl.
The 16-year-old boy was sentenced to 10 years probation, with Judge Jean Boyd stating she didn’t believe he would receive the proper treatment in jail.
Prosecutors agreed that if the boy continues to be cushioned by his family’s wealth, another tragedy is inevitable. However, they felt the sentence was an extension of said cushioning, stating:
“THERE CAN BE NO DOUBT THAT HE WILL BE IN ANOTHER COURTHOUSE ONE DAY BLAMING THE LENIENT TREATMENT HE RECEIVED HERE.”
The families of victims were understandably outraged, and have filed wrongful death suits amounting to tens of millions.
AFFLUENZA ISN’T A THING! HE’S JUST AN IDIOT WHO SHOULD ROT IN A CELL.
But if we just find this fucker and break his kneecaps
WE’RE THE BAD GUYS
fuck this shit
Each ball weighs differently, causing each one to bounce to a specific height, and when precisely placed in the dust pans and thrown down… 2013
EVERY TIME this comes up on my dash i just sit here and stare at it FOREVERRRRRrr.
Reblog while you can, the year’s almost over D:
A personal message from The XKit Guy
As I’ve said yesterday, I like to keep personal things personal. That being said, I’ve recently come across some posts about a terrible rumor that I would like to address, because I know how fast things like that spread on this website, and this is making me really sad and mad at the same time.
Read mored, I apologize deeply if you are on mobile.
Steven Moffat Doesn’t Understand Grief, and It’s Killing Doctor Who
There’s a popular joke I’ve seen floating around on Tumblr for a while now. It goes like this:
Well worth the read.
An Excellent break-own of how Moffat simply sucks at writing characters (especially women)
LOOK ITS APPLE PIE JUICE
LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THIS SHIT
SOMEONE GOT A BOTTLE OF IT AND WAS PASSING IT AROUND HALL
IT IS LITERALLY LIKE LIQUID PIE
YOU STICK IT IN YOUR MOUTH AND IT IS LIQUID PIE
THE OLD ORCHARD PEOPLE HAVE DISCOVERED SOME ANCIENT SOURCE OF ARCANE MAGIC OR SOMETHING BECAUSE IT IS LIQUID PIE IN YOUR MOUTH
WE MADE AN EMERGENCY WALMART RUN BECAUSE OF THE FUCKERY THESE JUICE PEOPLE HAVE WROUGHT