Meeting StormosisDisclaimer: See previous chapters.
(Immediately after the run-in with Arthur and Percy Weasley)
The three girls, clearly interesting in making new friends, raced on ahead down the Diagon alley, leaving the two fathers to their own devices and conversations.
“So, Mr. Stormosi, you’re new in England?” Lucius asked, curiously: after the war with Voldemort, few foreign wizards and witches visited England, if they could help it.
“In a manner of speaking,” the other man nodded in agreement. “My British grandmother, she came to Italy and met my grandmother as a part of St. Mungo’s cultural exchange program be-fore the wars with Grindelwald.”
Lucius frowned, deep in thought. “The Italian ministry of magic fought on Grindelwald’s side, did it not?” he carefully asked: he knew relatively little about that war, since his father Abraxas never told him anything about it if he could help it.
“There is no Italian ministry of magic, not as such what exists in England,” Mr. Stormosi shook his head, regretfully. “Oh, there is such an – establishment, as you British say, but it is just a front for the true power in the Italian magical society, the Jesuits.”
“Say what?!” Lucius almost exclaimed. He had heard of them, sure enough, but never thought much of them – after all, they were only muggles, right?
“Not so loud, please, sir,” Mr. Stormosi looked decisively nervous for a moment. “The Roman clergy is much more aware of the magical world than your Protestant one; the Vatican, utilizing the Jesuits, has certainly been attempting to dominate the wizards and witches of Europe ever since it came to power in the old Roman Empire. It is very distasteful, to be sure, but it is a fact. Their clandestine alliance with Grindelwald and his plot was just their latest scheme that had failed.”
“Fascinating,” Lucius nodded politely. “So what brings you to England? Is there a family reunion with your British relatives?”
“Alas, no,” the other man shook his head. “Sadly, but I am looking for work. There are few opportunities for me back home, for I am part British and am no fan of the Roman Catholic Church. I’ve decided to return here and seek my fortune in my old homeland – my grandmother told me quite a lot about it, actually.”
“Indeed? And what is your line of work?” Lucius said, somehow feeling that his new interlocutor wasn’t a shop-keeper – and he was correct.
“I, Mr. Malfoy, am a professional weather-wizard,” the latter replied grandly. “My family have been managing weather magic for the last twelve generations or so. Because I am part British, my employment back in Italy was scarce, I confess, but I was able to secure a job here, in your ministry of magic; unfortunately,” he added more quietly than before, “your bureaucrats are somewhat troublesome, and my starting date of employment keeps being pushed back for reason unknown...”
“That is true,” Lucius agreed thoughtfully. “Our ministry nowadays is something of a sprawling bureaucratic monster, and I often found myself at odds with it, just as many other wizards and witches have. Nowadays, however, I have some weight in dealing with the ministry and its many obstacles and I believe that I may be of some assistance to you in dealing with them as well.”
“Sir, please! I am a complete stranger to you, nor is my family in need of charity-“
“This is no charity, sir,” Lucius shook his head. “You may be part British, but are still a relative newcomer to England – consider my assistance to you a sign that signifies your welcome by the British lion regarding your return to your historical home.”
Stormosi thought about it for a moment. “Very well, Mr. Malfoy, it’s a deal!”
And the two wizards shook their hands.TBC