Chapter 1 : Introduction
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It was far better to try and enjoy the countryside than to sit in an unfamiliar home that reeked of all the negative things life had to offer. Her parents divorce had unraveled her mother, who wasn’t all that together to begin with. Her father had told her many months ago that he had once been attracted to the brokenness, but his love for her couldn’t break past the walls. He retreated back to America, back to his family who were more than happy to be rid of the sad English girl he’d chosen to marry. Out of a misplaced sense of duty, Charlotte had stayed behind so that her mother wouldn’t be entirely alone. She was bitterly regretting this decision. There were no distractions, her sisters were in America. Her best friend, Georgia was with her family in Switzerland. Books didn’t bring their usual comfort when that’s all you did, besides eating and sleeping. It was a wonder she hadn’t gained 20 pounds. It was either run, gain 20 pounds, or have a mental breakdown. Running was clearly the best choice.
After expending all her pent up energy from today’s frustrations, Charlotte stopped at the top of a rise and took a deep breath. England was much prettier than her birthplace of Savannah, Georgia. The cool weather and rolling green hills filled her with a peace she never found in America. She looked back over her shoulder and saw her grandparent’s house off in the distance. It was still too close. Being outside was the only time Charlotte found that she could remember who she was. The dark veil lifted every time she got far enough away from the house, and returned as soon as she walked through the front door. Her mother carried her demons like trophies and the darkness spread, permeating everything around here. This was the only time she could breathe, and her entire being lived for these runs. It had never been this way before. The start of school could not come soon enough. Of course, being a Ravenclaw, Charlotte actually looked forward to the start of school. More than that, she much preferred her fellow 6th years and the majestic, though sometimes scary, Hogwarts castle. A smile had crept across her face. It was happening again, the rambling thought thing that she was oh so prone to. Charlotte shook her head, in a failed attempt to clear her thoughts.
The countryside really was quite beautiful, and she could see the small town down the hill. This area was mostly full of muggles. Her family, as well as the Potters and a few other wizarding families lived near the local town, but not too close that the magic would attract attention. If she strained her eyes enough, she could actually see the Potters house in the opposite direction. Yes, the famous Potters. She knew them, attended school with them. More than that, her sisters were best friends with the two youngest, Albus and Lily. Charlotte had been to their house for parties, but never interacted with anyone past the formalities. After enough time, you’d find her curled up with a book in a quiet corner of the very large house. One very memorable Christmas, James Potter and his girl of the moment had come barging into the room she was occupying and it took them a full five minutes before they noticed her. Talk about an awkward encounter. They mostly avoided each other, not out of dislike, they just didn’t run in the same circles. Still, the few times they were in the same room they got on quite well. She was one of the few girls in Hogwarts that didn’t have a raging crush on him, and found speaking to him much easier when needed because of that.
Charlotte tore her thoughts away from James Potter, and climbed up the little hill near where she stopped. It was one of her favorite spots, with a small grove of trees that had a perfect view of the area. She climbed up, lay back against a tree and proceeded to let her thoughts drift. Eventually she fell asleep and dreamed a dream about a happy family. Her day, her life was about to take a dramatic turn. Things would never be the same agin.
A/N- Shout-out to Autumn.Shades for desinging the banner for my story! I could not have done something like that, and want to thank her for making it for me! :)