Chapter 1

I am not old, rich or female enough to be J.K. Rowling, therefore Harry Potter does not belong to me.

16/07/2015- I've made some changes to try to break up the two massive paragraphs. They are still large, but I can't see any place where any more breaks are suitable.


Sarah Potter, by her own admission, was not normal. For a start, she was magical, which put her into the 'not normal' bracket for most of the world, but kept her at the 'normal' point for the Wizarding World. But then, of course, there was the fact that she had almost died in all four years of her attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Even less normal, but possibly not unique. The thing that really, truly made her unique was the event that had occurred when she was barely a year old: when the Dark Wizard Voldemort had killed her parents before casting the supposedly unblockable Killing Curse at her, only for it to bounce back and destroy him. That earned her fame, and the unwanted title of The-Girl-Who-Lived. Personally, Sarah preferred to be thought of as She-Who-Could-Not-Be-Slayed. Wordy, yes, but also confusing to the sarcasm and common sense devoid wizarding peoples and mocking to Voldemort. A double advantage. The amusement, however, was currently being rendered pointless by the slow burn of anger deep in her stomach. Sarah was, generally, somewhat volatile. She had a naturally short fuse, and coupled with the general stupidity of almost everyone she met it left her nearly always on the knife edge of rage. It didn't help that for all of this summer, after seeing Voldemort rise from the dead and almost murder her, she was stuck in this house with her idiot relatives, hearing nothing from her friends. Her only source of information was the Wizarding daily paper, for God's sake, and that was filled with articles taking snide jabs at her sanity. Obviously the Ministry of Magic was denying Voldemort's return.

Morons.

Seeking to quash her rage before she did something stupid, Sarah carefully flicked a strand of flame-red hair from her eyes, her fingers briefly lingering over the lightning bolt shaped scar that was the memento of her first encounter with the Dark Lord. Sarah was currently lying flat on her back, hidden behind a large hydrangea bush just below the window to her relatives' living room, in the hope of hearing something on the news. She would have listened to the news in the house, but her walrus-like Uncle, Vernon, disapproved. Much as he disapproved of her in general, really, since he considered magic to be 'abnormal' and its practitioners 'freaks'. He had never heard of tolerance, apparently. Unfortunately, there was nothing of interest on the news, even when compared to the drivel in the Daily Prophet, and hearing her piggish uncle sound proud that his obese son didn't know who the current Prime Minister was turned her stomach. Then again, Dudley was about as smart as a Fruit Pastille- him being able to count to ten was probably an achievement. Unfortunately, there was nothing of interest to be heard on the news. Hell, when water-skating budgerigars made the news it was clearly a slow day.

Sarah let out an aggravated sigh and lay flat, trying to stay out of the heat. She was just adjusting her tattered hand-me-down clothes, Dudleys' in fact- particularly worrying given the gender and size differences- when a sharp crack echoed through the hot, dry air. Instinct took over and Sarah surged to her feet, fingers reaching for the wand tucked into the back of her trousers, but another sharp crack sounded as her head met the windowsill. The Girl Saviour promptly fell down again, clutching at her skull with a muffled groan of pain.

'Real smooth, Potter!' snarled the back of her mind, in a voice that was uncannily similar to the always unpleasant Potions Professor of her school, Severus Snape. Not pausing to ponder that mildly disturbing fact, Sarah struggled back to her feet, realising that the crack had not been followed by torrents of magic and destruction. Oh good. Less welcome, however, was the first thing she saw when she turned around- the unpleasant, distinctly purple face of her Uncle, Vernon Dursley.

"Girl!" barked the man, a vein pulsing in his forehead.

"Yes?" Sarah responded, doing her best to stay calm- a difficult feat, considering her throbbing headache.

"What are you doing?" Vernon demanded- though much less loudly. Obviously his need for discretion in the open had won the war against his urge to scream at his niece.

"Just looking for a quiet place to rest until I was startled, Uncle Vernon." Sarah lied smoothly. Damn, maybe the Sorting Hat knew what it was doing when it tried to put her in Slytherin House. In any case, there was no way in Hell she would admit that she was hiding in the bushed to listen to Muggle- non magical- news, especially not to her Uncle. What her Aunt saw in him Sarah would never know. Maybe it was the bias and bitterness? A thought for another time, perhaps when she wasn't in considerable pain from a blow to the head.

"Well rest somewhere else! I won't be disturbed by your freakishness." Vernon hissed. Sarah mentally ran through several witty retorts, realised that they would be wasted and walked away in weary silence.

Dusk found Sarah in a nearby park, sitting listless upon the sole swing left unbroken by Dudley and his gang. She had no intention of returning to Privet Drive until she had to- the longer she spent there the more appealing murder looked, a most unfitting attitude for the Golden Girl of the Wizarding World. At least, when they weren't making her out to be a deranged maniac. Still…four weeks she had been at Privet Drive, four weeks of Vernon's temper, her Aunts disdain and Dudley taking non-too sneaky lustful glances at her rear and chest. They were first cousins for God's sake! She highly doubted he would actually do anything, the Dursleys weren't that bad- merely petty and unpleasant, even if most of the mental issues she hid so well probably stemmed from the years sent living with them- but it still made her blood boil. Add to that the distinct lack of useful or interesting mail from her friends and Godfather, and she was starting to empathise with the 'Torture and Murder' philosophy of Lord Voldemort. It must be relaxing to be able to take your anger out on anyone you saw…no. Bad thoughts. Becoming a Dark Lady was a bad idea.

Sarah suddenly realised that the snide jabs the Daily Prophet was taking at her sanity might not be that far off, which worried her. Sarah growled softly in frustration. She wasn't even able to take her anger out by blowing something up with magic- she was still under the legal age, one spell and the Ministry would have her by the balls- metaphorically speaking, of course, she was quite clear on her gender, even if her build was still slim and boyish, courtesy of a degree of being underfed for most of her life. Luckily, she was broken out of her musings by the raucous voices of a group of hooligans led by none other than her absurdly pampered cousin Dudley. Speak of the Devil…Sarah sat in the park, two voices conducting a mental war in her mind. On one hand, tormenting Dudley- his fear of magic was remarkably acute- was one of the few pleasures she had over the summer, even better if it was done in front of his gang. On the other hand, he might actually call her bluff with all his minions to back him up, and most of those minions were decidedly unpleasant. Fortunately, her dilemma was solved by the gang not noticing her where she sat, and passed by. Sighing, Sarah rose to her feet and followed silently, hidden by the lengthening shadows- Aunt Petunia was always furious when she returned after Dudley did, and Sarah still had a mild headache. The girl walked a short distance behind Dudley and his cronies, half listening to their inane babble about which ten-year old they had beaten up that night, pathetic really…hold on. Dudley had just been referred to as 'Big D'? Really? Part of Sarah's mind immediately wondered if any of the group had picked up on the euphemism there, and the rest of her mind shuddered violently at the thought. Some things were truly worthy of an Obliviate spell. Still, reasonable taunting material, assuming Dudley was intelligent enough to realise it. No point in engaging in a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent, after all. The last of Dudley's gang departed, and Sarah strolled up until she was walking next to her beefy cousin. He had at least gained some muscle since starting boxing, she reflected, but he still looked like a heart- attack waiting to happen.

"So," she drawled, "Big D eh? When did that happen? Tell me, do you mind if I still call you Ickle Diddykins?"

"Shut up." Dudley growled. Sarah rolled her eyes.

"Oh no, you have silenced me with your witty and eloquent comeback. However shall I cope with the shame? Seriously though, what about 'popkins' or 'Dinky Diddydums'? Those aren't that bad, right?"

Dudley was slowly going purple, but obviously restraining himself. A small part of Sarah- probably the conscience expected of a saviour- felt bad, but the rest of her mind was busy dancing in malicious glee. This was so much fun!

"So", Sarah continued, wanting to see just how far her cousin could be pushed, "Who did you beat up tonight? Must have been a ten-year old, since you aren't out of breath."

Dudley was starting to twitch, and Sarah felt a remarkable satisfaction at being able to push her frustrations onto her cousin. From a psychological viewpoint, it was probably a bad sign that she was enjoying this so much. What would Dumbledore say? Oh well, no matter.

"Think you're so tough, don't you? With that freakish thing you're hiding." Dudley said in a low tone, breaking her from her thoughts. Well, if he wanted to play…Sarah pulled out her wand, tapping it against her palm in rhythm with her steps and taking a dark pleasure in the slight flinch Dudley gave.

"You- you can't use that here. You're out of school, you'd get expelled!"

My my, Dudley was more perceptive and intelligent than she gave him credit for. Maybe he was smarter than a Fruit Pastille, albeit only a little. Still, Sarah was pretty good at bluffing- her annual end-of-year near-death experiences had given her plenty of practice.

"How do you know the rules haven't been changed?" she asked, with a smirk worthy of the Ponce-uh, Prince- of Slytherin, Draco Malfoy himself.

"They haven't." Dudley said, although his confidence seemed shaky. Six out of ten for bluffing, Sarah thought, her smirk turning to a grin.

"If you didn't have that thing you'd never have the guts to take me on." Dudley blustered. Sarah gave a laugh, low and cold.

"Of course not, Dudders. Given that I'm an undernourished, untrained girl that should be obvious. However…I do have 'this thing', so your point is moot. And, coming from someone who needs four helpers to beat up a ten year old, your words are not as wounding as you might believe." She answered silkily. Dudley sneered- not Draco Malfoy level, but passable. Seven out of ten, maybe.

"Really brave now, aren't you? You aren't this brave at night, though." He said. Sarah lost her smile.

"At night?" she said, honestly confused.

"I don't know if you've noticed, Dudders, but it is night, and I'm not particularly terrified."

"I mean when you're in bed!" Dudley snarled. Sarah stopped cold, forcing away the thought of Dudley looking at her in bed in favour of replying.

"I don't know what you mean, Dudley. What am I supposed to be frightened of, pillows?" she said, though her heart suddenly wasn't in it. Dudley had stopped walking as well, and his smirk was back. Oh, hell.

"I heard you last night." He said breathlessly. "Talking in your sleep."

"What do you mean?" Sarah growled, though she had a horrible feeling that she already knew. She had seen the graveyard in her dreams last night, seen Voldemort's' return again. Dudley laughed harshly, adopting a mocking, whimpering tone.

"'Don't kill Cedric! Don't kill Cedric!' Who's Cedric- your boyfriend?"

Admittedly not one of the wittiest slurs ever made again her, it was still enough to spark anger through Sarah's veins. Almost of her own accord her wand rose, and she stepped forward, pressing it between Dudley's eyebrows.

"Shut up." She said, her voice cold, emotionless, almost murderous as years of anger surged through her, screaming at her to act, the law be damned. Dudley went utterly white.

"Point that thing somewhere else!" he squawked. Sarah paid no attention.

"Never speak of that again, do you understand?" she rasped. Predictably, Dudley wasn't listening.

"Point that thing somewhere else!"

"Are you listening to me? Do you-"

"Point that thing somewhere-"

Cold, flooding her veins. Dudley cut off with a shuddering gasp, and Sarah took a sudden step back as the night seemed to dim around her, the very stars consumed into a veil of opaque velvet. Even sound vanished, apart from the thumping of her heart and a faint, chilling scream. A woman's scream.

"Oh no."

Sarah turned on her heel, wand stretched out, fighting to see through the inky darkness as Dudley blubbered and whined at her to stop what she was doing. The scream was still faint, but her heart thudded painfully as it drew closer.

"I'll…I'll hit you!" Dudley threatened weakly. Sarah ignored him, he wouldn't-

Wham.

A fist collided with the side of her head, lifting her off her feet for an instant and throwing the slight witch to the ground. Her headache returned with a vengeance, but was pushed aside by a sweeping of utter panic as the thin stick that was her wand, her only weapon, flew from her fingers into the darkness.

"Dudley you moron!" she shouted, although she spared no time in searching for her wand, fingers groping blindly, the all-encompassing dark mocking her as she frantically tried to find her only hope of salvation. The scream again, mocking her efforts and accompanied by a high- pitched laugh.

"Lumos!" she gasped, desperate, too desperate to consider that magic should only be possible with a wand in hand, and blessed relief swept through her as a bright light flared not two feet away from her hand. A quick motion, diving and snatching up the wand, but the cold was closer, the screaming still louder, and the first trace of a rasping, rattling breath in her ears.

"Dudley! Keep your mouth closed, no matter what!" Sarah screamed- she might not like him, but Dudley didn't deserve the fate the attacking creatures would inflict upon him. A flick through her memories, searching for a happy one…thoughts of her friends-

"Expecto Patronum!" Sarah cried, but thoughts of being abandoned, the image of Cedric dead all flashed before her eyes, and the spell produced not a shining guardian but a thin wisp of white mist that barely slowed down the terrifying black-cloaked figure bearing down on her. She tried again, but once again just a wisp of white. The Dementor reached towards her, Sarah summoned all her willpower for one last attempt and-

"Expecto Patronum!" barked a clear, strong voice, and a blazing white light burst across her eyes, causing the Dementor to screech and recoil. From the corner of her eye Sarah saw the beasts partner drop Dudley before they fled, still screeching, from the blazing light. Sarah let her knees crumple, but before she could fall again a strong arm wrapped around her shoulders, keeping her up.

"Are you alright?" came an urgent voice in her ear, and Sarah briefly sagged into the arms of her rescuer.