Chapter 1: The Advocate

Minerva McGonagall was born in northern Scotland to a wizarding father and squib mother. Her childhood was not a happy one, for she had to watch her father hurl abuse, both verbal and physical, at hermother. Minerva was quite capable of defending herself, as her magical powers tended to do alarming things when she got angry, so she was more or less left to her own devices.

She never knew what love was—it was like some foreign word or idea: when she would come across it in books, she would puzzle over what it couldmean and eventuallyconclude that whatever it was, it must have longsince passed out of existence.

Reading was a regular activity in Minerva's life, since her parents never bothered to provide her with any sort of education. From her reading, she had gained some idea of right and wrong and was able to realize that every individual had the right to be a free, happy person. Her instincts told her that what Thomas McGonagall was doing was an injustice and that, contrary to popular belief, a man was in the wrong.

Despite the fact that many strong-willed women could always be found in Scotland, they did not have very many rights. When Minerva tried to talk to her male neighbors about her parents' fighting, they would dismiss her with a wave of the hand and send her home. Most of the men believed that if a woman was hurt or abused, she had brought it on herself. Some of the weaker women believed this as well. The complete apathy of the people around her made Minerva increasingly frustrated.

One evening when Minerva was about ten, she walked into the kitchen and saw her mother, her dress torn, pressed against the wall by her father. McGonagall had his wand at his wife's throat, the intent to murder written plainly on his face. On hearing his daughter's entrance, he turned around.

"Get out, Minerva. Your mother and I are busy."

When she did not move, he advanced on her, wand in hand, but she remained where she was, a defiant expression on her face.

What Minerva did next took her father completely by surprise. She kicked him hard in the stomach, sending him to the floor. His wand dropped from his hand and rolled across the floor to her. She snatched it up and pointed it down at the man who had never loved her, who had ruined her childhood and made her lose her innocence. An aura of pure, intense hatred surrounded her, and McGonagall felt it. For the first time in his life, he begged for mercy:

"Minerva, please—spare me!"

"Avada Kedavra!" A flash of green light, a rushing sound, and Thomas McGonagall knew no more.

A/N: What do you think? Is Minerva's using the Killing Curse too extreme? If so, I will edit the story so that it makes more sense. I would love to have more than one or two people review, partly because on the last story I tried to write, I got six reviews from the same person. Sometimes one person can give really great advice, but I like to see as many people reading, reviewing, and critiquing my writing as possible. Some suggestions that I will be overjoyed to receive are plot ideas, ways to structure my insanely long sentences, grammar errors, etc. No flames, please!