Nov. 6th, 2016

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Author's Note: This ficlet was written in response to a prompt posted to the Board by SeaTurtle: "One of your agents deals with one of their fears." It was part of a larger thread full of writing posts, which itself began as a writing game in the #rudi's room of the Discord chatroom.

Protectors of the Plot Continuum was founded by Jay and Acacia, and I write in their universe with permission. The Harry Potter series, Professor Lockhart, Defense Against the Dark Arts, and boggarts belong to J.K. Rowling. This interlude is rated G, unless you speak British English, in which case it contains a swear. This story had no beta.

* * *

"Augh, Merlin, the Professor has to be around here somewhere." Doc pulled one of Lockhart's larger portraits away from the wall to glance behind it.

"Have you noticed," Vania asked, "that you have a tendency to imitate the local speech style whenever we go somewhere?"

"I don't know what you're bloody talking about."

"Right." Vania rolled her eyes and continued checking the drawers of Lockhart's desk. "Why does this guy need so many copies of his own books?"

Doc dramatically threw open the door panels of a large cupboard in the back of the room. "Hey, I think I found the plothole! I can hear something . . ." He peered closely into the darkness.

A tumbling cloud rose into the air around his head, buzzing furiously.

"Aaaaaah! It was beeeeees!" Doc started a frantic run around the entire Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom, flailing his arms in the air while the insect swarm pursued. "I thought it was a ploooooothole but it was only beeeeees!" Doc ended by flinging himself out of the huge window that dominated one wall of the classroom. The bees returned to the cabinet while Doc called, "Aaaaaah! Castles are actually kind of shaaaaaarp in placeeeeees. I feel like I should have knoooooown this alreadyyyyyyy . . ."

Vania gently closed the drawer she had just opened and started heading for the cupboard, a thoughtful look on her face. "You know, I can't for the life of me . . ." She frowned. "I just can't recall what my worst fear is."

She peered into the shadows of the cupboard.

". . . Huh. So that's what a boggart looks like."

* * *

Author's Note: Obviously, it's not entirely appropriate for a PPC agent to have knowledge of something that's never appeared in canon, like the actual appearance of a boggart. Don't worry; Vania will never tell.

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November 2016

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