Nymphadora Tonks-better known as "Dora" to anyone who didn't want to be hexed-didn't mind growing up. She didn't fancy herself as one of those kids who was always looking to be an adult, or to be older than she was, but she found herself enjoying whatever new perks getting older entailed.

Turning five had meant getting her first broomstick, after displaying a rather impressive feat of accidental magic for the first time. According to her parents, she'd actually Apparated to escape from having to take a bath. As Dora generally liked baths, her mum often explained-when recounting the story to fellow witches and wizards of her social circle-that Dora had gotten especially dirty that day, nearly head to toe in dirt. "She claimed they were going to dig a hole to Australia!"

Well, the dirt had disappeared when Dora had, but her mum still made her take a bath. It hadn't been as long or as "scrubby"-as Dora had been want to call such baths-as either of them had expected.

Getting older had meant more fun and, yes, more responsibilities over the next few years. Dora hadn't been able to recount when, exactly, she'd been allowed to do what, but between the ages of six and ten, she'd been a happy and carefree kid, enjoying the attention of both parents, because her mum had never been able to have a second child. While Dora would have liked a younger sister or brother from time to time, she rather preferred being an only child and having her parents all to herself.

When Dora turned eleven, like all magical kids, she knew that she was going to go away to a magical school. Hogwarts was the one her parents had met and fell in love at, even though her mum had come from a severe all-magical family, and her dad had been the first in his family to have magic. While Ted's family received Andromeda into their fold with open arms, Andromeda's immediately rejected her, even going as so far as to burn her name off of some fancy tapestry that held everyone's names. Fortunately, as Dora knew, not every family member on her mum's side had rejected her, and her uncle Alphard paid for all of their expenses.

Dora knew that she was a half-blood, so she knew the basics about Hogwarts. Her parents had kept some things secret from her, like the locations of the secret passageways, but they told her about some of their old teachers, and the Sorting hat. Her mum had been in Slytherin, like the rest of her family, and her dad had been in Hufflepuff. There was also Gryffindor, for the really brave, and Ravenclaw, for the really studious. When it was time for Dora's sorting, the hat didn't take very long before placing her in Hufflepuff, and there she found her school family.

The first two years had gone rather well. Sure, there was more studying than she would have liked, especially at the end of the term, but Dora always passed with very high marks. She might not like to spend all of her free time in the library, like a Ravenclaw, but good grades mattered to her. She wasn't sure what she wanted to do once she had finished at Hogwarts, and reckoned that she still had loads to time to decide, but in the meantime, it couldn't hurt to do well in everything.

She and her friends departed from the train at the end of June at the conclusion of her second year. Dora felt a bit sad at it being the end of the term, but certainly relieved at having made it through her exams with very good grades, and happy to be able to spend the holidays with her parents.

Both of them were waiting for her, grinning, as she got off the train and gave her friends farewell hugs. Sure, they'd likely visit over the holidays, but they'd send owls and have floo-calls to be sure. Sometimes, like in the case of Molly Falcett, their parents had a big trip planned, and they'd be out of the country for at least a month.

Dora hurried over to her parents and hugged them tightly. She hadn't seen them since Christmas, having spent the Easter holidays at school, and doing homework the entire time! But even though she did have some summer homework, it wouldn't be nearly as bad as a few months prior.

Her mum held her a little longer than usual, and had an odd look on her face when she released Dora, but Dora thought her mum must have missed her. Her dad reacted the same as he always did, with a great hug and tousling her waist-length hair. It was currently purple.

They Apparated home, and then her parents took a few minutes to study her, still smiling.

"I say, Dora, you must have grown a foot since we last saw you!" her dad teased.

"Not that much!" Dora protested, with a smile.

"Your robes would say otherwise," her mum pointed out, and Dora could see what she meant.

While her school robes had covered her ankles at the start of term, they were more than a few inches above the ankle.

"Don't worry," she added, as she drew out her wand to summon the tea tray. "We'll just add that to our shopping trip when your list comes out. I expect," she added, rather vaguely, "we'll have a lot to purchase this year."

Dora, taking a biscuit, assumed she meant the books for her new classes next year. "I've chosen Divination and Muggle Studies," she said, once she swallowed. "I know that Dad can tell me loads about the muggle world, but everyone says Professor Burbage is really great, and we'll learn loads about it from our world's perspective."

"I'm sure you'll do well," Dad told her, also taking a biscuit. "That was the first lesson your mum and I had together. She was utterly lost, at first."

Andromeda looked mock-affronted. "I was not!"

"You didn't even know what electricity was!"

"And how would I?" Andromeda pointed out, reasonably. "You didn't know about floo-powder when you first started at Hogwarts, did you?"

Dad shook his head, conceding the point.

"I've every confidence that whatever lessons are available to students will be taught with the highest proficiency," Andromeda told her. "And that you'll continue to do well."

"That reminds me," Dora put in, grabbing at her bag. "Here are my exam marks."

She retrieved the parchment and handed it to her mum, who held it so that she and Dora's father could see it. They scanned the page and smiled proudly.

"Even better than last year. Very well done, honey!" Andromeda beamed, pulling her from her seat and giving her a hug.

Ted joined her almost immediately, and Dora felt herself wrapped in a warm hug.

She grinned.

As much as she loved Hogwarts, it felt brilliant to be back at home.

Later that night, or so it felt, her life seemed to be a massive downturn.

Author's note:

Although this is not my first rodeo, so to speak, it is my first fic that writes Tonks-and perhaps, later, Andromeda-as my narrator. It is also, as the tags show, a fic that delves into topics that could be considered controversial. Having written other Harry Potter works with followers of their own, I don't want this to be judged or compared in relation to them, which is why I've created a new pen name for this project.

Further notes will follow as needed, and there will be a massive note at the conclusion of this work.

Although I do not plan to write out Tonks'/Dora's time at Hogwarts in even close to the sort of detail the series writes Harry's, this fic will coincide with canon, which means that Tonks will marry Remus Lupin, and they both will die at the end.

Finally, if you're enjoying this, I'd appreciate some words of encouragement.