When: Saturday morning, immediately after the Beltane celebration
Where: The Shrieking Shack
Rating/Warnings: R, language, adult themes, implied violence
Kite's interest in the Beltane ceremony was minor. He attended only because he needed an excuse to be in Hogsmeade at this hour of the morning. After the ceremony he had an appointment.
All in all, he would rather have been at the castle, in bed.
He moved slowly and carefully along the road that ran closest to the shrieking shack. The disillusionment charm didn't make you invisible. It made you a chameleon, blending in with your surroundings. Like a Predator's cloak, you could produce ripple effects that would give you away if you weren't careful, so he took his time, musing on the celebration he'd just witnessed, and what he'd seen that most of the people gathered around for the lighting of the beltane fire hadn't seen.
The traditions of Beltane were old and steeped in the Druidic rites, hence the burning of the Nawglan, the nine sacred woods, and the collecting of the ashes, and spreading the Beltane fire to everyone's hearth to sustain them over the course of the year. Most of those gestures were symbolic now, since witches and wizards didn't need to keep their fire burning all year and they could easily re-light it if it went out. But the ritual of lighting the fire itself actually had a purpose in the days of the Druids. Kite knew what it was. He'd bothered to study it when it came up in History of Magic. So he understood the significance of the effort it took to get the tiny flame to catch, its brief flare, and its dwindling to nothing on the edge of a shaving of willow.
The Beltane fire failed.
The year dawned black.
They had relit the fire quickly, of course, and only the two people bending over the wood had seemed to notice what had happened. They exchanged glances of worry, but they managed to hide it from the gathered witnesses. Except Kite, who was paying very close attention. Divination wasn't ONLY useful for those who had The Sight. Even those who were psychic as a brick could read the stars easily enough, and even cast the runes as long as they could maintain their focus. Kite was no idiot, and he liked to be prepared. Mars was bright in the sky, the rune Hagal had been making much of itself of late, and now, black Beltane. Had he spread the tarot, he had no doubt he would have seen the Tower. He made a note to do so, because the Tarot gave a much more detailed assessment of coming hazards than the runes did.
They do say in China, may you live in interesting times, he mused humorously as he left the road and picked his way down to the fence that bordered the property on which the shrieking shack hulked, leaning precariously as if it sought to topple over onto anyone foolish enough to approach it. Like most wizarding buildings, it was more stable than it looked.
Still moving slowly and carefully, he made his way around to the back door and slipped inside, wand drawn. He wasn't expecting an attack, but he preferred to err on the side of caution when possible. He cast a wordless silencio on the staircase before climbing it, so the ancient wood wouldn't creak under his feet, and set his weight very carefully. The door at the top stood slightly open, and he dismissed the spell, listening carefully, ascertaining silence before pushing it open. On one hand, he didn't want to surprise his contact, because a surprised Death Eater would be fairly curse-happy. On the other hand, he didn't want to be surprised himself.
Nothing was out of place. The handler was already there. He pushed the door the rest of the way open and dismissed the disillusionment charm as he stepped inside.