The Furse Manor was silent. The three occupants resting calmly, not even considering the looming threat lingering outside the wards.
Outside of the manor was the infamous Dark Lord. Accompanying him were some of his most faithful and ruthless servants. Bellatrix Lestrange stood to the Dark Lord's right, grinning like the deranged woman she was. The excitement of torturing and killing rushing through her bloodstream like a drug.
The Furse's were blood traitors and the newborn tainted by her mudblood mother. They all deserved what was coming. The Furse's were going to die a long, agonizing death like the vermins they were.
Sebastian Furse woke up alarmed. The wards were down. They were going to be attacked. He ripped the cover off himself, shocking a now awake Carolina. Both of them clutched their wands, ready to battle for their daughter.
"Sylas!" An aged house-elf appeared. "Take Angelica, hide her. Don't come out for anything." Carolina commanded, already halfway out of the bedroom.
"Of course, Mistress Carolina!" Sylas squeaked. The little house-elf knew exactly what the plan was. He was trained since birth to protect the Noble House of Furse. He disapparated towards little Angelica's nursery, where the one-year-old was sleeping softly. Sylas grabbed the emergency go-bag and picked Angelica up. The brunette baby cooed in response, gazing at the house-elf with her doe eyes.
Sylas could hear the sound of a fight in process downstairs. The sounds of the spells colliding against the ancient walls and furniture waking up the little Angelica. Her wails echoed off the stone walls and at the same time, he felt the ties to the elder Furse's being severed.
They were gone. Sebastian and Caroline were dead.
Sylas comforted little Angelica. The house-elves wrinkled hand soothing back her curly hair. He knew what to do now. Disapparating, he found himself in front of a small but charming house. With the basket and all the needed papers, Sylas laid her in the basket with several blankets making sure she was warm. He knocked on the green door, hoping to wake up whoever was indoors. This was a last resort and Sylas prayed to Lady Magic that everything would go as planned.
Charlie Swan woke to a start with the demanding knocking at the front door. He groggily made his way downstairs. Charlie bent down picking it up and almost dropping it back down in shock. Amongst the bundle of purple and white blankets was a small girl with a letter right on top. The letter seemed to be simple cream-colored paper with the elegant calligraphy in ivy green ink that said, Angelica Furse.
The Washington air nipped at his bare toes as he brought the baby inside. The warmth of the house greeted them both as he carefully pulled her out the basket.
She was too big to be a newborn but too small to be a toddler. Charlie wondered if she was a year old. He gently brushed back her mane of chocolate brown hair. Charlie noticed she had several freckles decorating her face. The freckles ran along cheeks and nose bridge, looking like stars against the darkness of the night.
Her eyes fluttered open revealing a pair of amber colored eyes. They were doe-like, innocent and not yet exposed to the harshness of the world.
Carefully balancing her against his hip, Charlie picked up the letter and opened. Inside was her birth certificate, a letter addressed to him and Angelica, a family picture, and adoption papers?
He opened the letter first.
This may be strange, but my husband and I need you to take care of our little Angelica for us. You are reading this because we are dead. Simple as that. We have been killed by a terrorist in England but you do not have to know the details of that.
We need you to take her in, protect and care for her as if she were your own daughter. It may be too much to ask but we have faith that you will do all of those things. Every month you will be sent a check with your name in it. This money will be used to take care of any of Angelica's needs.
On Angelica's eight birthday, someone will come to your house explaining to the smallest detail of what she is. At the age of ten, you will give her the letter addressed to her. Finally, at the age of eleven, Angelica will receive another letter. This one will be a school letter; one that will contain all her school information.
We truly hope this is not too much for you.
May wisdom and love always be with you,
Sebastian Furse and Caroline Reyes-Furse
Shocked to his very core, Charlie promised to himself to do all of that. Hastily he signed all the papers. He groaned and put his face in his hands.
He had to go shopping tomorrow.
The letter was right. On the day of Angelica’s eighth birthday, a strange woman had arrived at their house.
"My name is Jane Williams, I work for the Seattle branch of Gringotts. I am here to talk about the Furse family accounts," Charlie motioned for her to come in.
After sitting down in the living room where Angelica was patiently waiting, the young woman went straight to the point.
"Let's get straight to it. You adopted Angelica after her parents died. After that, you received monthly checks that helped you financially support her. Correct?"
Charlie nodded, confirming the summarized version. "Yeah, that's all true."
Jane nodded back, a simple gesture that confirmed all of her thoughts. "Angelica is a witch, you may think it's crazy but just think about it. Has she ever done something strange that you could not explain?"
"Yes. Sure does explain a lot too." Charlie coughed awkwardly and shifted at Jane's raised eyebrow and Angelica's scowl. "You know, she made all my uniforms pink once. Good thing it only lasted five minutes."
"That happens sometimes," she said amused, glancing towards the small tanned girl seated next to her father. "The Furse family is very wealthy, Mr. Swan. Once Angelica reaches of age she will receive all that money. Right now you and Angelica can access her trust vault."
"That's understandable but how would we be able to access it? I don't have any of those papers."
"Mr. Swan, do not worry, we can go see that right now."
"Really? We can do that like right now?" Angelica blurted out, her cheeks turning redder by the second. She cursed whoever gave her the talent of blurting out things at the most inconvenient times.
Jane smiled, "Of course we can. It is your trust vault, after all!" Angelica smiled back, happy that she would have something that connected her to her biological parents.
"I have a portkey, it's one of the ways most wizards travel though it may be uncomfortable for beginners, it is the best we have." Jane stood up, holding a piece of silk in her hand. She nodded towards the door leading to the backyard, "Shall we?"
Charlie nodded and followed after Jane while holding onto Angelica's hand.
"To use the portkey you have to hold on to me," Jane held out her elbow and Charlie grabbed it. And as if a hook came and pulled them from behind their navels towards the location.
Landing in an alley, Charlie felt queasiness settle in. "It's normal to feel a little bit of nausea after using a portkey," Jane informed the Swan duo. "Alright, let's head to Gringotts."
Jane walked towards the back of the alley and with her wand tapped on a brick. "It's how magical folk access the wizarding area of Seattle." She explained as the brick wall fell away. "Welcome to Kings Alley!"
After sorting out everything at Gringotts, Angelica had entered her trust vault, where she had found a wooden chest that contained various journals that her parents owned during their school years and after Angelica was born. There was even a large photo album.
Angelica was filled with angst. She didn't have any memories with her parents nor did she know the happenings of their death that lead to her adoption with Charlie.
The girl breathed out a sigh as she opened the photo album. The first picture was moving and it was of a young couple holding a baby between them. The baby was silently waving at the camera. They were her parents and the baby was most definitely her. Angelica gently traced the figure of her parents, entranced with the aristocratic features of her father and the soft, glowing face of her mother. They made quite an attractive couple.
Angelica licked her lips and looked at the other pictures on the first page. Most of them were of her, as a baby, looking as carefree as baby can get. The ones that were not of her were of other people. People who were most probably dead.
Dead as Lincoln, she thought bitterly. Closing the photo album and opening one of her mother's journals. The pages were still pristine condition with everything written in a vibrant burgundy ink or the occasional black and ivy green. She had clearly taken some time to organize her thoughts, as most of the pages were dated and small annotations here and there. And her mother's handwriting was very messy but understandable and was sometimes smudged in some places. Left-handed, Angelica mused with a smile.
Angelica closed her mother's journal and opened one of her fathers. The pages of the journal were worn down from daily use. His handwriting was more like calligraphy, well practiced and beautiful in an ancient way. His writings were written in a variety of inks. Blues and green the most common. Angelica smiled feeling a tad bit closer to her parents.
She closed the journal and put it back in the wooden crest, the same smile on her face.
A year later.
"Angelica!" The now ten-year-old girl peaked down the stairs to see her annoyed dad.
"Yes, Father?" She quipped, tying her hair up to a high ponytail. "And yes, I will be down soon. Don't leave without me!" Grabbing the blue flannel that was on the edge of her bed, Angelica headed down the stairs. She was a blur as she ran past him and out the door.
"Come on, old man!" She yelled. "I want to see Jacob!"
Today was the (almost) bi-weekly gathering of the Swan's and Black's to watch football. The game would be accompanied by grilled meats that Angelica would stuff herself with until she was ready to vomit. It was a Swan/Black tradition that she could not get enough of.
The Swan's arrived at the Black's home and Angelica was already halfway out the door, flinging herself towards Jacob. Charlie and Billy chuckled, watching as Angelica greeted Rachel and Rebecca.
Hours later, Angelica and Charlie were back home, stomachs filled with food and watching the evening news.
"So, you said you were going to give me something tonight..." Angelica trailed off, looking away from her dad as she said this. Charlie awkwardly cleared his throat, "I did?"
Angelica nodded. "Yes, you did." Charlie nodded back. "I totally did not forget about that. I'll be right back, then." Charlie lifted himself up from the couch and went to his room to fetch the letter.
Angelica heard him rummage around his room. She waited for a minute before he appeared back in the living room.
"Here it is," Charlie gave her the letter. He sat down watching as his youngest daughter tore into the stationary. Angelica's honey colored eyes flew across the page, drowning in the information she was being given. Charlie waited, holding in his breath afraid she would start crying at any given moment.
Angelica flung herself towards her adoptive father. "Thank you," she croaked. "For taking me in when you didn't know me."
Charlie returned the hug, grateful that she wasn't taking this as he expected.
"You're a great Dad."
Charlie chuckled at Angelica's statement. "I know," Charlie glanced at the clock. "But I think it's time to go to sleep, kiddo."
Angelica groaned but stood up, heading towards the stairs. "See you after work tomorrow, Dad."
Charlie watched with fondness as his youngest went up the stairs.
Angelica laid in bed, limbs stretched out like a starfish. Her mind was whirling with all the possibilities of what could have been. There were so many, each thought leaving just as fast as they appeared. Some lingered, giving Angelica the chance to fantasize about her parents.
“I’ll always miss you both, ” Angelina breathed. Her eyes fluttered closed and she quickly went down in a deep slumber.