A/N: Well, guys, welcome to the first HP story I've ever put up. XD Of course, I could have put up a HP fic earlier, but I was so daunted by how great the books are. And I'm like, "Well, how am I going to create a great fanfic?" So, I decided to be atypical and do a pairing story with Ravenclaw and Slytherin as the two leads. Odd, but it randomly came to me while I was playing HP: Chamber of Secrets the PS2 game one day. It's just weird how this stuff comes to me.
Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling owns the series and all the royalties. Which pretty much makes her a gazillionaire and not me. XD
Chapter 1: First Magic
There was a time long, long ago, when the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry had yet to be properly introduced to the magic world. The four founders would not meet together for many years to come to educate eager young students. No, long before that, they had to grow up in their respective homes. Their magical skills would be honed to the point they could help others with their splendid gifts. But, no one had really thought of such a way yet unless, perhaps, Queen Maeve who taught magic to children over in Ireland years before. She was the one who came up with the brilliant idea, even before Hogwarts existed. However, the important four founders would take this revolutionary idea one step further.
One of the future founders was, of course, Rowena Ravenclaw.
She was born in a dale in what is now the central part of England to Lord and Lady Ravenclaw. As soon as she could walk and talk, her mother showed her the joy of reading through reading from books ever night before she fell asleep. There was a variety she got acquainted with in terms of stories: daring adventure, passionate romance, and the alluring fantasy novels Rowena loved most of all. To her, fantasy was magic combined with the adventure and the romance she liked as well. It inspired her, and she would fight the sleep threatening to close her eyes to find out what happened with the heroes' quest. Even with the prospect of hearing more tomorrow night, she had to hear as much as possible.
Her love of books and literature established, Rowena was as young as five years old when she started retreating to the library. With her parents Lord Vincent and Lady Gwyneth sometimes away on their duties, it was the one refuge for her. A whole world had been offered to her once she had been shown the library. She could pick up a single book to read and soon be transported to a place far, far away. No one could force her to return to the real world. Wherever she went captivated her so much more. Of course, just as she usually reached a particularly exciting climax, one of the servants in charge of her would call her away. This often made the young girl extremely cross, for it would mean she would be stuck with her sewing or dancing lessons again. Her mother thought in an old-fashioned mindset that all girls should become accomplished. But, Rowena only wanted to read.
Despite their lower rank than the king and queen, the Ravenclaws thought it suitable that their two daughters be given the same opportunities as more privileged girls should. Not one to settle for tradition, Rowena objected to sewing and etiquette lessons and dancing. Her older sister by three years, Lucrecia, was talented at all three. However, there was no malicious rivalry between them, not even a hint of jealousy. Lucrecia wasn't arrogant about her natural ability to pursue the hobbies of traditional women. And she understood that her little sister would become a forward thinker of her generation. It didn't take a fortune teller to see that happening in twenty or so years. As for Rowena, since she hated tradition more than anything, she preferred to focus on gaining knowledge. She may not have been a perfect seamstress or a mistress at etiquette or even a graceful dancer.
But, she did have intelligence beyond her years.
Luckily, at age seven, she could put her exceptional brainpower to good use for a different gift entirely. How she discovered this gift came about one day when she wandered the nearby village with Lucrecia and two ladies-in-waiting who served as chaperones. As a wizard and witch, respectively, their father and mother wanted them to be aware of what they called "Muggles" or ordinary people with no magical abilities. Though Rowena still wasn't quite sure why her family was different from these Muggles, she nonetheless liked them. She theorized that perhaps they taught her and her sister to be tolerant of them. Magic didn't factor into anything, least of all their personalities.
Ever since their parents guided them through the village, the two girls had become smitten with the mundane yet interesting culture of non-magic people. And some of them were kind to them, like one elderly woman who offered sweets to them. To the two young girls, that had been a term of endearment. At present, they dully watched their chaperones browse the food stalls they would select from for that night's dinner.
"This bores me. What say you, Ro?" Lucrecia asked, her light blue eyes gleaming with that special something Rowena could accurately identify as an idea. She admired her older sister for being outgoing and adventurous, more so than herself. And Lucrecia, at age ten, already possessed the comeliness that would make other girls envious later on in her life. She had their mother's blond hair and the blue eyes they both shared, though Rowena's were slightly grayer.
Smiling in an innocent little girl manner that she didn't even full-heartedly mean, Rowena slyly glanced at the ladies-in-waiting. "I think we need to escape them for a while."
"True enough, sister. Let's go."
Before they could get caught, they proceeded to flee from their chaperones, giggling madly all the while. The pressure to be proper young ladies was off for the time being; finally, they could act their age and be free to express themselves. Though their parents gave them kindness and love, they could be a bit overbearing at times. As they ran (carrying their recently cleaned skirts and underskirts underneath, of course), some of the villagers gave them amused yet bemused glances. Who cared what they thought? They could run wherever they wished for the moment.
Unfortunately, this soon stopped being fun, as Rowena realized once she fell short of breath and sweat was like rain against her skin. Obviously, the sweat was far less pleasant. Lucrecia stopped mere paces ahead of her, her knees nearly buckling from exhaustion.
Annoyed, the elder sister sighed out of vexation, "Why must we girls have these skirts? They don't make for good running. Boys have all the fun."
"I'm afraid so," Rowena agreed, smiling ruefully at their misfortune of being girls. Boys had so much freedom that it didn't seem neither fair nor right. Ironically, as soon as they established this fact, a group of boys ran up toward them.
Being the more sociable of the two, Lucrecia walked the few steps it took to get to them. She wished to make a good impression and possibly befriend the boys. The one whom Rowena assumed to be the leader stepped forward. He must have been about her age, because Lucrecia outdid him in terms of height. However, she disliked the way he looked at her sister, as though he would do something mean to her.
"I didn't think the Ravenclaws liked coming down here," he told her condescendingly. "You don't think we're good enough for you."
"Hmph, if that's what you think," Lucrecia retorted. "We actually wanted to be friends."
The blond village boy raised an eyebrow. "Really?"
"Yes. You shouldn't believe what you hear, you know."
At first, the boy appeared to genuinely consider Lucrecia's offer of friendship, though that glint Rowena quickly learned to detest remained in his green eyes. Then, he moved slightly forward, as slow and methodical as a predator. His friends smirked, but that was only because they didn't know what else to do.
He offered his hand to her. "I'm Devon then. My friends are..."
But, Devon never introduced his friends to her, because he had started tugging at her braid hard. Lucrecia cried out in pain and successfully swatted his offending hand away, though the other boys swooped in to participate. In the meantime, Rowena trembled angrily from witnessing the terrible joke pulled on her sister. If only Lucrecia had realized something sooner.
"She wasn't trying to trick you!" she shouted out of protest as well as for the honor of her family. "At least she doesn't pull people's hair before she knows them, unlike you."
Turning to her, Devon sneered, "Maybe, but...Your hair looks even better to pull."
"No!" She shook her head, her hands clenching into fists before she even realized it. She had nearly reached the end of her rope with this impossibly cruel boy. She wished she was older, so she could do something about this injustice. Before the boys could tease Lucrecia or pull at her blond braid, Devon was suddenly levitated into the air. Unsure of what was happening, Rowena continued to focus on him as her temper mounted. She had no idea she was doing magic.
Her concentration had been so perfect that one of his friend's terrified yelps promptly caused her to directly see what occurred. Sure enough, Devon floated in mid-air, right above a mud puddle. She gasped, shocked at this illogic. For, it was impossible for someone like Devon to stay in the air for that long. Losing her focus, she unknowingly caused him to fall into the mud puddle.
While he spat out some of the disgusting mud, Lucrecia merely sniffed and threw back her braid over her shoulder. She didn't look at all surprised at what just happened.
"That's what you deserve, you boar. Go play in the mud like your kind usually do. Let's go, Rowena, we need not befriend mean children like him."
Still numb from shock, Rowena stared blankly at Devon while his friends ran away.
How had she done that? It couldn't have been mere coincidence that she stood there, glaring at him, while he had randomly levitated. She had done something to him that she was unable to put a proper name to. She wondered what types of books would give her the explanation she needed. Still...Was she horrible for doing this? Even though her sister seemed to think it was humorous that Devon ended up landing in a filthy puddle, Rowena didn't find it half as comical. If anything, she felt somewhat guilty for shouting at him in the first place. Though, she told herself, he had deserved it for insulting Lucrecia. Perhaps she was right in making him fall.
"I'm sorry," she apologized as she offered a hand to help him up. "My name is Rowena, even though I suppose I shouldn't be so kind after what you did to Lucrecia. You're lucky I'm nice."
Devon stared at her suspiciously, observed his friends were gone to avoid witnessing this, and finally grabbed her hand. After all, he could hardly afford to be seen touching a girl's hand, especially a snobby one like this wealthy Ravenclaw. He noticed she didn't turn up her clean nose at him despite his assumptions.
Rowena gave him one last guilty glance before adding, "Maybe we'll be friends some day...if you don't pull my braid, that is."
"I won't," the boy muttered grudgingly, and she accepted this as the closest to an apology.
She gave him an inclination of her head as a sign of respect she imitated from her mother before walking away.
Once she caught up to her sister, the elder girl's sky blue eyes positively glowed with a heartfelt eagerness. Rowena found this odd, considering how infuriated Lucrecia was earlier.
"What is it, Lucrecia?" she asked, genuinely confused.
Lucrecia smiled and excitedly clasped her younger sister's hand. "What you did back there...that was magic. It literally, honestly is magic."
"Magic?" Rowena repeated, her eyebrows shooting up toward her hairline. "There's no such thing as magic. At least...I don't think there is. I've heard that Mother and Father have magic, supposedly. Is it true?"
Her older sister nodded. "Certainly, because I do magic myself. You got that first inkling. This is good news! We'll tell Mother and Father as soon as we get back."
When their chaperones, each of them carrying a basket of food, found the two girls who were supposed to be their charges, they immediately scolded them. Running off like that was dangerous, they said, there were as many thieves and crooked people as there were good people. Not for one instant should they have wandered off, especially without telling them first.
"But, Rowena has magic!" Lucrecia declared earnestly, hoping that they could get in less trouble if she told her mother's ladies-in-waiting the truth. Even if it was partial.
Just as she hoped, their chaperones' tone of voice considerably changed from anger to utter delight in a matter of minutes.
One of them complimented kindly, "Clever Rowena. We were all beginning to wonder if you had any magical ability at all."
It was more of a half-compliment, but Rowena took it graciously nonetheless. However, she wondered why no one had told her that magic existed sooner. After all, if all the other residents of the castle knew about it, then why hadn't she been informed? It was as if everyone but her was in on a birthday surprise, only it wouldn't be her birthday for another year yet. All this time, she thought that spells and wands and witches existed strictly in the books Lady Gwyneth often read to her. How could they be real in the real world? As much as Rowena cherished the thought of discovering a new talent she had, she couldn't help but ponder all these things. Though she smiled along with Lucrecia, she realized how drastically her life had changed.
Perhaps there were negative aspects to her magic, such as lack of control. She was lucky that that Devon boy landed in a puddle instead of seriously injured. If her gift could turn fickle at any given moment, she would know not what to do. Thinking of something like that absolutely terrified her, numbed her body even.
Just before they entered inside their castle home called Eaglewood, Lucrecia seemed to read her thoughts. "Don't worry, Ro. You'll learn from our parents about magic and how to control it. You won't always have situations like the one today just because you feel angry or upset. It means the magic you keep inside is finally coming out. It's time for you to be trained, I think."
"I hope you are right, Lucrecia," Rowena replied as they crossed the drawbridge. "I admit that I felt guilty about losing control, even if that Devon boy was mean."
Surprised that her younger sibling would be more forgiving to the peasant boy than she personally was, Lucrecia raised an eyebrow before thinking nothing more of it. Though she had to confess that Rowena was a more giving person sometimes than she was, she still couldn't believe Devon could have any good qualities as a person.
With that stupid incident furthest from her mind for certain, she dragged Rowena up the stairs to their father's private study. Both Vincent and Gwyneth were there, discussing (ironically enough) how long it seemed to take for Rowena to develop any magical abilities. Yes, she was at that perfect age, but their parents thought she would be able to display her gifts earlier on. They were merely concerned for their younger daughter's future. Once they noticed both their children standing in anticipation at the doorway, they instantly stopped their talking.
"Girls," Gwyneth addressed them brightly, more than happy to see them. "How was your excursion out to the village? Did you enjoy yourselves?"
Not wishing to give their mother a straight answer, Lucrecia told her, "Somewhat, Mother, but something happened today. Rowena did magic."
At first, Lord and Lady Ravenclaw were in disbelief, though they should have known this day would come. It meant little Rowena would soon mature into a most competent witch.
Out of pride, Vincent Ravenclaw smiled at his youngest daughter. "Did you? What sort of magic?"
"I, er, accidentally bewitched one of the villagers."
Instead of scolding her for this indiscretion like Rowena expected, her parents gave her smiles that seemed to nearly crack from pride. She found this rather odd of them to react this way. Personally, she could barely shake off her guilt.
"Rowena, this means we will need to enlist the services of a wandmaker. And since we do have spellbooks here, we will be able to teach you some spells! This is an exciting time for you, dear," Gwyneth tried to assure her.
"A w—wand?" Rowena was bewildered to say the least.
Her father affectionately patted her on the shoulder. "Of course. What is a witch without her wand?"
Suddenly feeling extremely strange, she excused herself before going down the corridor to her room.
As soon as she entered her private chamber, Rowena let out a sigh that surmised all of her mixed emotions. It was true that she was happy that she had the capability to do magic. She knew that her parents were a witch and wizard before, but she had no idea she could do what they did. Maybe she could make them even prouder of her, not to mention magic sounded like a fantastic gift and a blessed convenience. At the same time, though, she would have to separate herself from average humans, the Muggles. Instead of picturing them as accepting of her gift (as a seven-year-old might imagine), she could see them trying to threaten her with torches. This was why she must keep this a secret from the Muggles. Thankfully, Devon hadn't suspected her of being the cause of his "accident."
If he had, would he have accused her of being a witch? This was a dark time she was living in, in which grown adults would take the word of a child that another child was a witch. What if she ended up being burned at the stake?
Gulping from the fear for her life, Rowena clasped her hands tightly. She may have been very young indeed, but she was already aware of the positives and negatives of possessing magic. Her intelligence did make her seem as though she was older than her actual age. As she pondered still further as she usually did, she heard a knock on the door. She gave the person permission to come inside.
Smiling warmly, Lucrecia entered, holding an evenly well-rounded stick that Rowena assumed was a wand. Settled with the fact she would become a witch, she glanced at it.
"This is my wand," Lucrecia unnecessarily explained, holding it up. "Holly, seven-and-a-half inches with the core of unicorn hair. It's very light, perfect for spellcasting. Think of it, Ro."
"Of what?" she asked gently, knowing the answer.
Her older sister grinned. "You'll get your own wand, too! Not like mine, of course, but it's going to be really special. I know it."
Rowena thought this exceedingly kind of Lucrecia to share these words of sisterly encouragement with her. Magic could make them grow closer among other things. Maybe she could happily accept becoming a witch. For, she knew her life would never be the same again.
A/N: I decided to have Rowena have a sibling to make things more interesting, to be honest. Besides, I kinda wanted to break some stereotypes I've been seeing with Rowena/Salazar stories. And yes, there are more out there, believe it or not. XD Like, I don't want to make Rowena an only child at least. You'll have to read more to find out if Salazar is or not.
Anyway, I hope you like this story. I personally hope it isn't too rambling for you guys.