Hello. This is my first published foray into the Harry Potter verse for fanfiction. I've done "Bones", and "Buffy", but never Harry Potter. This story is taking place in the Marauder's Era, and it follows Riona Gallagher: the fifth Marauder. It starts in their very first year, and it will end around the time that Sirius is arrested.

This first chapter is all about Riona discovering she's a witch. She's muggle-born, you see. And, she's Irish.

Now, enjoy the story.

Chapter 1: Magic

Riona Gallagher was turning eleven years old in one week's time. She woke up that Saturday morning and climbed down the oak wood stairs to the lower level of the small cottage where she and her father lived. The stairs led directly to the kitchen, where her father was sitting at the square maple table, reading the newspaper and eating oatmeal. The two ate breakfast together, and Liam assured his daughter that she would be getting something rather special for her eleventh birthday. He had always treated her like a princess, especially since her mother had passed away about five years prior. He was determined to give her the best life she could. He just wanted her to know that she was loved. Riona smiled widely at her father and kissed his cheek.

"Love ye, Daddy!" Riona kissed his cheek and ran upstairs to get dressed for the day.

As she came back down, there was a knock on the rosewood door. Riona ran to stand next to his father as he opened it.

"Are you Mr. Gallagher?" A woman with dark hair twisted into a bun, round spectacles, and a flowing robe of emerald green asked him.

"Aye. And ye are?" Liam answered, his brogue thickening as he looked at the stranger.

"I'm Professor Minerva McGonagall. I teach at a school for unique individuals. If I could come inside, I could explain more. We-the school- are quite interested in your daughter."

"Me?" Riona spoke up for the first time, looking at the interesting, yet strict looking woman at their door.

"Come inside." Liam stepped back to allow Professor McGonagall to enter, and he took Riona's hand, holding her to him, as they entered the sitting room.

Riona settled on her father's lap as they sat together in his favorite black leather armchair, a gift from his wife to him. She rested her head on her father's chest as he regarded Professor McGonagall.

"So, why are ye in'erested in me daughter?"

"Well, Mr. Gallagher, she is unique. I'm sure that you've noticed that sometimes things happen inexplicably around her," Professor McGonagall began.

"She has quite a gift with animals. Butterflies come up and land in her 'air; birds sit calmly on her finger. Deer will eat righ' from her hands. It's like magic." Liam stroked his jaw thoughtfully as he remembered each incident.

"It is magic, Mr. Gallagher. Riona is a witch. I have come to offer her a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, with our Headmaster, Albus Dumbledore. She could learn to control her magic and use it wisely."

"What if she goes to a non-magic school?" Liam asked, accepting the fact that his daughter was not normal with surprising ease.

"She could, but it would be hard for her. If you have magic in you, you need to learn how to use it," Professor McGonagall answered calmly.

"I want to go, Dad," Riona told her father.

"Ye do? Mo milis, are ye sure?" Liam looked at his baby girl, with eyes as blue as her mother's and hair as dark as his.

"Tá, Athair. Ba mhaith liom dul."

Liam kissed the top of her head. "If that's what ye want, Muírnin."

Professor McGonagall smiled. "You're very understanding, Mr. Gallagher. Our Gamekeeper, Hagrid, will be along within the next week to take her to shop in Diagon Alley. You, of course, may come along, Mr. Gallagher. Here is her letter."

Riona eagerly took the envelope from her. "Thank ye, Professor McGonagall!"

"Of course, Miss Gallagher. I will see you September 1st. Have a good rest of your summer."

"Thank ye, Professor. Ye, too," Riona responded politely.

Liam walked Professor McGonagall to the door before turning back to his daughter. He picked her up and spun her around. She squealed happily.

"I always knew that ye were special. Just like yer mother. I swear she coulda been a witch 'erself. She was so talented, no matter what she did."

Riona curled up in her dad's arms. Her father pressed kisses to the top of her head.

"I don't wanna let you go. Ye won't be able to come 'ome every day."

"Oh, Daddy." Riona hugged her father tighter. "It'll be alright. I can write to ye!"

"Good. Ye better be doin' that a lot, Muírnin. I'm gonna miss ye."

"I'm gonna miss ye, too," Riona whispered.

Liam held his daughter closer to him.

So, that's the end of Chapter 1. Here's some translations for the Irish according to Google Translate:

Mo milis=My sweet

Tá, Athair. Ba mhaith liom dul.=Yes, Father. I want to go.

Muírnin=Sweetheart, beloved, darling (I imagine 'Sweetheart', since it's his daughter.)

I hope that you enjoyed Chapter 1. Please leave me a review. :-)

-Angela Leigh (AL)