Chapter One – A Brighter Today

Tears were streaming down my face as I knocked on Ginny Weasley's door. It was a month before our return to Hogwarts, and I had nowhere to go. My parents, learning for the first time since my acceptance letter that I was allowed to do magic outside of school starting August 1st, had kicked me out.

My mum and dad had never really accepted the fact that I was a witch. However, this doesn't mean they weren't surprised. I had always been considered something of a freak at home. I had hid the details of Magical Law from them for as long as I could, but on the morning of my 17th birthday, I couldn't stand it anymore. I sat them down and talked it out. I don't know what I was expecting, but it definitely wasn't being immediately disowned.

The mahogany door opened, pulling me out of my head. Mrs. Weasley, Ginny's mum, stood in the doorway, evidently surprised by the sight of me.

"Elizabeth?" she looked me over and spotted my tear-stained face, "What on Earth...? Are you alright, dear?"

A sob threatened to escape, so I clamped my lips tightly together and shook my head. Sensing my pain like she always could, Mrs. Weasley gently grabbed my elbow as she flicked her wand with her other hand, levitating my trunk and suitcase into the house behind us. She sat me down into one of the kitchen chairs and called up the stairs for Ginny.

I glanced around as Mrs. Weasley busied herself with making tea. The Burrow was the same as I had ever remembered it. I hadn't come over often, but Ginny's home always made me feel better than mine ever had. I could see the clock in the corner that told what each family member was doing at that exact moment.

Before I could examine it further, Ginny walked into the kitchen, and started to ask, "What is it…" but she abruptly broke off when she spotted me. Rushing over, she pulled me into a tight hug.

I couldn't hold it in anymore. Ginny lead me, tears, hysteria and all, upstairs to her bedroom. From the noises coming above, I could tell that people were upstairs in another room. But at that moment, I didn't feel like making the effort to ask who it was. I sat down on Ginny's bed, and she held me while I cried.

Eventually, my tear ducts stopped producing. I calmed down and straightened myself so I was facing my best friend. She gave me a long, searching look to tell if I was OK. I smiled a bit, just to show her I was done crying.

"What happened?" she asked gently.

"My parents kicked me out. I told them I was allowed to do magic outside of school and the types of jobs I would be considering," I took a breath and paused, "Ginny, I… they kicked me out."

She suddenly got very angry, "What were they expecting? That magic is like some hobby you pick up on weekends?"

I smiled weakly, "Something like that," I looked at her for a moment before continuing, "I don't have a place to stay."

Ginny grabbed my hand, "You're my best friend, Elizabeth. Do you think I'd let you rot in the cold? You're staying here.

I hugged her again, feeling warm for the first time since summer started. "Thank you," I whispered.


I suppose I should tell you something about myself. The only reason that I was born was because my parents needed an heir. My father, a ridiculously rich business tycoon, was never around; he was always off in other countries, undoubtedly having affairs with the various bimbos who worked at his office. My mother, and heiress to one of the biggest fortunes in the UK, never cared about my father, and only married him for his wealth. They both hoped for a boy when the time came for them to produce an heir.

When I was brought into this world on August 1st, my parents already had a line of childcare providers set up. Their disappointment at my sex led to them both being very negligent parents. At the age of 9, my parents decided my mother should then start to teach me the ways of the world, meaning how to act in society. Above all, they said I should not be an embarrassment in public. She soon, however, became disgusted by my tomboyish ways and my kindness for everyone, including people who were socially below us.

My parents' reactions to the letter I was sent by Hogwarts were relief, and they never stopped to consider the possible reactions to their choice until it was too late. They were glad to get me out of their hair. I was happier then I had ever been at Hogwarts, and the summers were made bearable by my owl correspondence with newly made friends. I was not surprised when my parents disowned me, but the sadness of knowing that I could never love my family as Ginny loved hers was overwhelming.

Ginny and I were always the best of friends as soon as we let each other in. Both of us were painfully shy during our first year, but we became very close in the last month of it. The beginning of our friendship started when I came across Ginny crying in a broom cupboard one day. I learned later that she was crying out of fear of what her parents would think of her; she had been possessed by Lord Voldemort for most of that year and almost had died, if not for the famous Harry Potter. I held her as she cried, not asking any questions but just letting her cry. She fell asleep like that. I got a seventh year to help me get her up to our Gryffindor dormitory, and the next morning we were joined at the hip.

I listened to all of Ginny's troubles, including her heartache caused by Harry Potter. Trust me, no one was happier than I was when he finally kissed her after she won the Quidditch House Cup. Ginny was 

always there for me, though I was less articulated with my problems than she was. She always seemed to know when I was hurting though, so it made sense that it was to her I ran to when I was kicked out.

Harry Potter, the Chosen One or the Boy Who Lived (whichever you prefer), had defeated Lord Voldemort earlier that year. He, with the help of his best friends, Ron Weasley, Ginny's brother, and Hermione Granger, a very close friend of Ginny's and mine, had dropped out of Hogwarts a year early to go on a top secret mission pertaining to the secret to defeat the Dark Lord. In order to protect Ginny while the War was waging and while he was gone, he broke up with her.

I must say though, it didn't surprise me that, the day after the Final Battle, they got back together.

Harry and Ginny were quite obviously meant to be, and everyone could see that. Was I jealous though? Quite frankly, yes, though I was careful to hide my feelings from Ginny.

During the War, something else happened that was no surprise to anyone; Hermione and Ron had finally realized their feelings for each other. Hermione and Ron had always squabbled, carefully hiding their true feelings from no one but each other. About five minutes before Lord Voldemort and Harry met, they decided that they should get together. From Harry's account of it today, I have to say, I probably would have gagged.

With all the couples getting together around me, I felt very lonely, but I tried not to dwell on it. During the day I focused on hanging out with Ginny and getting better acquainted with the famous Trio. I threw myself into the preparation for school and the enjoyment of the last few days of summer, so things were looking up for the first time in a long while.

A week had gone by since my arrival at the Weasley's, and I felt like I was finally fitting in with the family and Ginny's other friends. Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, and I were in the sitting room, playing Exploding Snap (a fantastic card game) and just enjoying the lazy days.

Mrs. Weasley entered the room, "Ginny, Lizzie, your letters have arrived," she waved two pieces of parchment in the air absentmindedly; "I think we should go to Diagon Allley tomorrow, is that fine with you dears?"

"Of course Mrs. Weasley," I nodded as Ginny grunted and remained focused on the pile of cards in front of her. Harry was grinning mischievously as I caught his eye.

"Harry, Hermione, and Ron, there was something for you also," she handed the note over to Hermione, who was closest, and left the room muttering something about dinner.

"HARRY!" Ginny screamed as she clamped a hand to her forehead. I doubled over laughing as Harry looked innocently at Hermione and Ron.

Harry had trailed his fingers suddenly up Ginny's bare calf (she adored her capris) and made Ginny jerk suddenly, making the pile in front of her explode. The sparks created from the explosion had apparently singed her eyebrows, which caused her outburst.

I, still chuckling, took out my wand and repaired my best friend's eyebrows. "Better?" I asked as she felt her face.

"Almost," she winked at me. She then whipped out her wand and pointed it at Harry. He, who eyed the wand in his girlfriend's hand apprehensively, started to edge away.

"What's the matter, Harry?" she smiled, "You look overheated. Why don't we cool you off now?" And with that, a jet of water sprouted from the tip of Ginny's wand and hit Harry full blast.

Hermione, who was laughing up until this point, noticed the note in her hand getting sprayed. "Finite Incantatem. Look what you've done, Ginny," looking disapproving as she cast the spell.

Ron elbowed her, "Come on Hermione, it's just parchment," and with that, pulled out his own wand a preformed a simple drying spell on the note.

"Oi, mate, what about me?" Harry looked at his best friend with a scowl.

"Naw, you're better like that," Ron grinned.

"Stop being lazy, Harry," I tossed him his wand from the couch. He scowled as he caught the wand and dried himself off.

"Better read what the note says, Hermione," Ginny leaned against her newly dried boyfriend. He stroked her hair as she snuggled in.

Hermione opened the folded paper in her hand and began to read,

"Dear Messrs. Harry Potter and Ron Weasley and Ms. Hermione Granger.

In the aftermath of the War, things need to be discussed concerning you all.

I shall be expecting you by Floo in my office at 7:00 p.m this Saturday.

If you cannot make it, please owl me, and I shall accommodate the best I can.


I remain,

Faithfully yours,

Minerva McGonagall"

"Three guesses what she wants to discuss with us," Ron grumbled.

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