Authors Note: I’d like to give credit where it is due.
First off, this is For xximaginairexx's Once Upon a Time Challenge over on the forums.
Secondly, this novel is highly inspired by the story The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen.
Thirdly, I of course have to give mention to JK Rowling. Characters and a lot of settings belong to her.
Everything else, like the plot and unrecognizable characters, is mine.
Please read and enjoy, and if you would please leave a review at the end. Something as simple as “Hey, this was great!” means a lot! Thank you!
Chapter last edited -- 12/06/12
Not too long ago in a land not so far away, there lived a not-so average girl from a not-so average heritage. This girl wasn’t just an infant for her fingertips tingled with magical powers. She possessed the powers of a witch.
On a stormy night, at not even a full day old, she was placed upon the doorstep of an orphanage in London. It took only moments for her to be found, and when that stout, old woman picked her up from the carrier that she had been bundled in, Khloe Moss didn’t utter a sound. Even though her eyes shed tears and her arms and legs flailed with discomfort, her lungs stayed quiet. It was in that moment that the stout, old woman new this girl was different.
Years and years passed and Khloe blossomed into a bright, young lady. Now, at fifteen years old, Khloe Moss is starting the newest chapter in her book. With curiosity and determination, she has finally decided she would do all she could to learn of the family that had abandoned her at birth.
And this is where her story begins.
Khloe Moss securely clutched her new book into her arms, pulled her book bag to rest on her right shoulder, pulled her hood up over her head in an attempt to avoid the rainfall that struck the ground that day. It was terribly cold, and the wind was viciously scattering her hair about, but it was still a beautiful day gifted by Mother Nature herself. Every day, even days such as this, were truly remarkable. Khloe was amazed by the simple wonders of Earth.
Summer was at its close and her fifth year at Hogwarts was just around the bend. She had spent majority of her day browsing through the shops in Diagon Alley for this year’s supplies of ingredients and books, but when the sun was replaced with heavy rain clouds she began making her way back home.
Feeling eerie about being in Knocturn Alley, Khloe didn’t hesitate to flee from the alley at a run. She had never felt comfortable being in such a place, but her options had started to run out. She just had to have this book. She hugged her book even closer to her body as she rounded the corner out onto the, stilly rainy, streets of Diagon Alley. It took only a moment before she had found her way into the pub known as the Leaky Cauldron.
Many people (and creatures) had found their way into the bar after the clouds had released their tears. There was a strong smell of wet dog and fire whisky in the air that made Khloe want to hurl, and it was accompanied by the sound of loud chatter from half-drunken men and crying children.
The Orphanage was exactly 16 minutes away from the Leaky Cauldron if one was to walk. Since that was Khloe’s only form of transportation, she was forced to leave the crowded pub and stroll through the pounding rain. The Muggle streets grew quieter and quieter as she made her way, seeing as most people were able to afford a cab or had a car of their own.
By the time she made it through the thick doors of her childhood home, Khloe’s hair and clothes were soaked, dripping and cold. As if that wasn’t bad enough, her shoes squeaked on the ceramic floor with every step she took, alerting to everyone nearby that she was home.
“Oh dear, child, I was worried you had gotten caught in that awful draft.” A portly lady came up behind Khloe and wrapped a light pink towel around her shoulders. Mrs. Blair was her name, though she had no apparent husband sulking about.
Khloe shrugged her shoulders and gave Mrs. Blair a soft smile.
“Yes, well, off to your room,” she said, guiding Khloe to the staircase. “Get yourself dried off and in new clothing. Supper will be ready at 7 o’clock as always.”
The awful thing about living in an orphanage was that there was little to no privacy. As Khloe entered her chamber, two girls looked up and exchanged quick glances before going back to their activities. Khloe didn’t mind their attitude; in fact she welcomed being left alone. In all their years at the orphanage together, Khloe didn’t even know the names of the girls she shared the room with, and she doubted they knew her name either.
Khloe made her way to her bed and unlocked the trunk at the foot of her mattress. Quickly she pulled some items from her bag and hid the spell books and other various items on the bottom and closed it up before anyone could get a peek in. One book, however, she left out. Khloe positioned it under her pillow while she changed out of her wet garments and into a more comfortable attire. Once she was mostly dry and warm, she curled up into bed and took out the book again. The title read “How to Locate Missing Persons.” It was an old and frayed book, its pages smelled of mildew and mold, but it was exactly what she had been searching for.
She bought it for a large sum of coins after discovering it on the very top shelf in an eerie shop down in Knockturn Alley. It was a dodgy place, but her curiosity had become an obsession. She would do anything to find out the truth of her parents.
She wanted to know who they were, what their story was, and why she was forced to live in an orphanage while they continued on with their lives. Throughout her years, she had gathered only a tiny fraction of information on her so-called parents. All she knew was that they dropped her off in the middle of the night. No name and no face, just a small note that read, “Khloe Moss. Keep her safe.”
Keep her safe? Khloe often wondered what she needed to be kept safe from. Was she in danger? And if she was, who did she need protection from? She just knew there was a story behind those three words that she needed to know. It kept her up late at night and turned her dreams into nightmares.
Her heart thumped wildly in her chest as she opened the book and read the disclaimer on the title page.
Please be aware that some beings have no intention of being found. Take caution.
Also note that this book does not work with animals, beasts, or spirits.
Khloe awoke the next morning with an intense headache. Her arms and legs felt heavy as she pushed herself out of bed. Her feet hit the cold, stone floor and she shivered.
“The cab will be here any moment, dear.” Mrs. Blair waddled into the room, offering each of the girls a glass of orange juice. She then gave Khloe a quick smile. “I’ll be sure to get your breakfast to go. Now hurry, hurry. Get dressed and be on your way!”
After getting dressed, Khloe heaved her belongings down the stairs and to the front door. Mrs. Blair handed over a toasted egg sandwich and gave her a warm hug. “I fear this may be the last time we see each other.” Once this school year ended, Khloe would be old enough to be on her own, so it was indeed the last time she’d ever set foot in the orphanage. “Have a nice time at school. Here, take some stamps so you can send us a letter or two.” Mrs. Blair pushed a handful of stamps into Khloe’s pocket and sighed. “If you ever need anything…”
The cab driver approached and began hauling the luggage to the car. Khloe and Mrs. Blair stood in silence as they waited for him to finish. Once the last trunk was arranged in the back, Khloe gave her former ‘mother’ a nod and a smile and went on her way.
She climbed into the back seat and handed the driver a note that said “Kings Cross Station.” Giving a thumb’s up he started the car and off he drove.
Watching the orphanage grow smaller and smaller in the mirror, Khloe didn’t feel any remorse for leaving the place behind. She just knew there were better things in store for her this year, and she couldn’t wait for it all to begin.