Title: By Chance (Working Title, suggestions appreciated)
Author: Me! Arinya, known as many other names, Neopluto being one of them.
Rating: PG-13
Summary: When an ordinary girl slips into the wizarding world by accident, no one can tell what will happen, except wondrous things. Included: Snape action, good drama writing.
Disclaimer: This disclaimer goes for all the chapters of this story. None of J.K Rowling's characters belong to me, and at the moment are just being borrowed. No infrigement intended. I'm not making any money off of this. Stella on the other hand is mine, as well as any other original characters that pop up along the way.

Author's Note: This is un-betaed, alot like most of my stuff...truth is, I don't have time to get it corrected by a beta and put them in. BUT! It's still rather good writing compared to alot of the other stuff that gets put here, give it a chance will you?

Chapter 1: Looking, but not Finding

Stella was having an incredibly horrible day. How often was it that she got lost on her free period? Her school was in Manhattan, and free periods were time to do whatever the hell the student wanted to, preferably for studying, but many were known to go to the Park or shopping. Stella had been planning to visit a new bookstore that had just opened up. She had first known about it when she looked in the newspaper that morning on her commute to school through the subway. She was sure she had the address right, in fact, she was holding the clipping in her hand, and yet...she was completely lost.

She took another look at the clipping.

Brighthouse Books
Where Worlds Connect and Share Knowledge

Open six days a week: Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesdays 9 AM-10 PM, Thursdays 8 AM-2 PM, and Saturdays and Sundays 9 AM-8 PM. Come visit and pick from our selection of over 3,000 books at ---

She stowed the clipping back into her bookbag, it was frustrating to look at. She wasn't the most clumsy person on the Earth, so she could rule human error out, but she was in the right place! Why the heck did she not see the store? She walked back up the block again, scanning the stores with no success, then stopped, sighing, and looked at her watch. It was nearly time to go, she needed to give herself ten minutes to get back to school. Not only that, but it was a Thursday, and it was already 1:40! She had spent nearly half an hour searching for the place.

"I'll try tomorrow I guess..." she said to herself, and took one more look to the row of stores.

"Wait..." she whispered, and took a step towards them.

All of a sudden, she could see two huge glass double doors in front of her. The sign held above the doors said Brighthouse Books in bold proud letters. The huge glass pane over the sign showed many people walking around tall bookcases. She just stood there for a moment, feeling incredibly stupid. Had she really not seen this enormous store? Things like this had happened before, but she thought she had grown out of that and her eyes were 'working better' now.

Stella took one more look at her watch, thinking it would be okay to pop in for a bit, take a quick look, then come back the next day to get whatever book she really wanted. She put her hand on the metal handle of the door, pulled, and walked inside.

The blast of cool air was much more pleasant compared to the humid late-summer air environment she had just left. She wiped off the sweat on her brow, and eagerly headed towards the Fiction section of the store. She put away the newspaper clipping, there was no more need of that now.

She laughed at herself a little as she looked at the various spines and titles on the shelf in front of her. She was absolutely ridiculous! Of course the store was here, she had just been so frantic, she couldn't see it at first! It had happened plently of times before, so it wasn't so surprising. After all, she was the girl who couldn't spot the pencil on her desk and went around the entire classroom looking for it. That was an embarassing moment.

There were a bunch of books she had never heard of, but looked very interesting. She took several out halfway, looking at the cover art, then slid them back in. There were a couple more shelves up ahead, she was sure taking a brief look at them wouldn't hurt, and went over.

When she passed the next bookcase, she stopped in her tracks. Was she dreaming? What was going on?

"Don't push John!" said a young girl, trying to get back into the long line leading a the frame of a mirror.

"Shut up Grace!" muttered John, shoving his sister again.

"Hey, don't leave me behind!" said Grace when they were at the head of the line.

"You're such a crybaby," said John, and grabbed her hand roughly, the other holding a plastic bag full of books.

"I'm telling mom!" said Grace right before he pulled her through the frame, and they disappeared.

The frame looked like it wasn't holding anything at first, but when the two children passed through it, the surface rippled and turned silver before returning to its previous state. Stella felt her jaw drop slightly, and turned into the next aisle, so that she could sort out her thoughts properly.

It was too dangerous to speak outloud, even though that would have been easier. All that kept running through her head right now was that she had just seen two people disappear like it was an ordinary thing. This bookstore wasn't normal. She dug out the clipping from her bookbag again, and looked at it. Brighthouse Books, where worlds connect and share knowledge. It couldn't be literal, could it? It was a catchy slogan...but honestly, this was all a trick her mind was playing on her. Stella took another peek over the bookcase, and saw several more people go through the various frames. No, she wasn't dreaming.

"Okay, all I have to do is walk out of here, and forget about this," she said to herself and took a deep breath.

Suddenly her hand was grabbed by a very disgruntled looking ten year old. Her mouth opened and closed, shocked for a second, and not knowing what to say as the boy dragged her along.

"I'm sick of this place Hannah! That stupid man doesn't have any Kenshin mangas! What kind of bookstore is this?! I mean honestly, over THREE thousand books, and not even ONE Kenshin manga???" the boy ranted viciously.

"HEY!" Stella managed to shout at him.

"Don't start Hannah! I'm really mad! I want to go home!" he said, pushing all the other people out of the way as he stormed through the line to a mirror, then went through.

Stella felt a brief tingling as she passed through the frame of the mirror, and when she came out on the other side, a very displeased Hannah stood on the other side with crossed arms. The boy let her hand go quickly, whirling around to face Stella.

"Oh! I'm SO sorry! I thought- I thought you were my sister!" he said, looking awfully embarrassed.

"I've been waiting here since forever Paul!" said Hannah.

Stella thought the sister did bear some resemblance to her, she had a small stature, and short black hair. They looked to be about the same age too, 15, but that was where the similarities ended. The girl was sporting an eyebrow piercing, and had a couple more on both of her ears. She tapped her foot impatiently.

"Paul! Did you forget? We have to meet Mom and Dad before two! And look, it's two already! Don't tell me you were looking for more of those ridiculous comic books!"

"Ugh...can we just go now?" asked Paul, not wanting to carry on the conversation in front of Stella.

"Come on kid," said Hannah, and she took her brother around the corner.

"...ooookay," said Stella, raising both her eyebrows, then turned around to go back through the mirror frame, only to knock her face against it.

Stella stepped back, fazed, and shook her head. The surface of the mirror turned silver, then back to the regular clear. She reached out to it with her hand, and found that they wouldn't go through.

"The bookstore is closed now, it's 2:05 you know," said the elderly man beside her.

"Uh?" asked Stella, turning her head sharply, he had caught her by surprise.

"There are strict security measures around here, because the portals allow burglars to come in. So when it's closing time, it's closing time, and there are wards set all over the place," he said.

Stella was getting a bit frantic, and blinked her eyes rapidly. The old man just shrugged and gave her a sympathetic smile, and went on his way. She tried the mirror again, but it wouldn't work, there was even a sign that appeared whenever she tried and failed, spelling 'closed'.