Title: Becoming Strong
Prompt: Tara/Harry- orphan, guardian, family, protect
Summary: Tara has to say goodbye to her old life, but in doing so, acquires a new one
Character(s): Tara, Harry, Mr. McClay
Disclaimer: Don’t own a thing.
Tara inhaled deeply as she came up to the small house. It was the house she grew up in, the house she never wanted to see again. Fate though, doesn’t think about wants, only necessity, and Tara needed to say goodbye to her past so that she could move on. Taking another steadying breath, she knocked on the door. Standing there, she could vaguely hear yelling before the door swung open to reveal a small child, no older than 4 or 5, bright green eyes hidden beneath a shock of black hair.
She looked down at the kid, surprised. She had expected her father or even one of her cousins to answer, but she didn’t recognize the boy at all. “Um.. H-hi.” she greeted.
The boy peered up at her curiously.
“Well, boy! Who’s at the door?” a loud voice came. Tara winced, recognizing the voice from her childhood. Steps thundered down the hall, and her father came into view. He paused minutely at the sight of his daughter, but quickly recovered, moving forward. He grabbed the boy by the scruff of his neck, and shoved him away. “Go to your room, boy.”
Tara looked at her father in shock. Sure, he wasn’t the greatest parent, but he had never been so plainly cruel in the past. She looked after the boy as he wandered down the hall. He turned back to look at her for a moment, and quickly disappeared. She moved her eyes back up to her father. “He- Hello.”
“Tara. What are you doing here?” he demanded.
“Can… Can I come in?” Tara asked.
Her father glared at her for a moment, but stood aside to let her pass through. “This better not take long, we’re expecting company soon.”
Tara moved into the living room and sat on the sofa. She straightened her back, trying to prove to her father that he didn’t intimidate her. Even so, she felt her hands trembling, and quickly clenched them together. She looked up at her father who was standing imposingly in the doorway. “I wa-wanted to say go-goodbye.”
“You’re leaving?” he asked dispassionately.
She nodded, “I got ac-accepted at S-Sunnydale.”
“You’ll be back before your birthday, of course,” he stated, more than asked.
She didn’t reply, but looked back down at her hands.
“Well, is that all?” her father demanded.
“Um… Who- who was that b-boy?” she asked.
“You’re mother’s sister died a while back, and we were stuck with him. Showed up on our doorstep with some letter about how it was our responsibility to keep him safe.” he snorted. “We’re stuck with the damn brat.”
“She.. she had a sister?” Tara asked, shocked.
“She had a freak for a sister, just like herself. From what I can tell the boy’s a freak as well. We’ve been trying to get rid of it, punishing him. Well, we’ll see.”
“A fr-freak? He’s ju-just a kid,” she muttered into her lap.
“You were a kid once yourself, now you’re into black magicks. The power is evil, Tara. We’ll get rid of it somehow.”
“Why do you … do this?” Tara asked. “Punish us f-for things we can’t c-control?”
Her father narrowed his eyes. “It’s demonic, it’s not right. Unnaturalness that will get you sent to hell, we’re doing what we can to prevent that.”
“You can’t p-punish him for being special!” Tara shouted, surprising both herself and her father.
Her father sneered. “Anyone would do the same. No one wants to deal with evil. We take him to an orphanage, and he’ll just infect others with his … abilities.”
Tara stood up and glared at her father. “Wh-Where is he?” she demanded.
Her father looked at her in surprise. “Why?”
“I’m going to take him with m-me, He won’t stay with you and your c-cruelty.” She decided.
Her father raised an eyebrow. “You’ll take him?”
“I w-won’t have him stay here to grow up like I did, always a-afraid and ashamed.”
“Cupboard under the stairs.”
Tara’s eyes went wide, and before she could help herself, an incantation passed through her lips. She quickly ran into the hallway to see the cupboard, held shut with two outer locks. Quickly throwing them open, she opened the small door.
The boy was huddled under a small wad of blankets. “Hi.” she greeted the small child.
Bright eyes looked up at her, “I’m Tara,” she said, “What’s your name?”
“Boy.” he croaked out.
Tara felt tears come to her eyes and held out a hand, “Will you come out with me?” she asked.
The boy looked at her fearfully. “I won’t hurt you, sweetie, I just want to help.”
After another moment, he hesitantly placed his small hand in hers. “That’s right, let’s get you out of here.”
She lead the small boy to the door and had him stay there for a second while she went back to the living room. She walked in to see her father tied to a chair, trying to get loose. She walked forward to stand before him. “What’s his name?” she asked.
Her father glared at her and didn’t answer.
“Look, we can do this two ways, you can tell me his name, or I can cast another spell, to … loosen your tongue.” she said coldly, making sure he understood that it wouldn’t be pleasant.
“Potter.” her father spat out. “Harry Potter.”
She smiled falsely. “There, see? Not so bad.” she turned to walk back out.
“You’re just gonna leave me here?” her father demanded.
She turned back to face her father for the last time. “It’s the least I can do, in return for all you did raising me.”
She walked back to Harry and held his small hand in hers, and together, they left the house, headed for a new beginning.