Disclaimer: I do not own anything from the Harry Potter Universe. That is all JK Rowling.
Grandfather wants me to write a journal to help keep my thoughts and feelings organized, he thinks it will help me learn to feel or remember how I felt at the time in case I forget how to... I am getting ahead of where I should be. First off, I don't really want to write this so I don't plan to date anything, it is a journal of school, it's not hard to figure out when it happened.
Alright, my name is Artemis Tranquillitas, I have slightly curled burgundy (mostly brown though) coloured hair that comes about halfway down my back. My twin brother is Briar Willowbirch, His hair is the same color but dark to the point of almost being black and cut above his ears. We share the same emerald green eyes with hints of yellows and browns, not in a speckled way though, almost like they are all three colors at once. I don't know why I am trying so hard to describe our eyes when no one will ever read this. Briar thinks it is because our eyes are what really show we are twins, I am sure you can see it if you look closely at our noses, but unless we are standing next to each other no one would be able to tell.
So, Briar went with mother to Australia. I went with father to Scotland. All we knew at the time was that I had gone North and he had gone South; we didn't even know how far the other had gone. Our parents divorced over the fact that until we were born, neither had told the other they were from magical families.
Briar took Mother's maiden name upon her insistence when they split and I kept our fathers family name.
It was hard being separated. We were too far apart to communicate telepathically in the manner of twins. It was lonely; being alone in my mind. We were eight years old.
Mother passed away one year later in a car crash of all things. It was five months after the accident that father and I found out. We immediately went South to search for Briar. He had headed north searching for us. Not wanting to miss each other we literally just headed in a direction and walked. Father knew that Briar and I would pick up on each other eventually. Our range was quite far.
It was three months before we found each other. Father took us both back to Scotland; where we celebrated our tenth birthday. Six months after our birthday, father passed away, well we think he did. There is a high possibility that he faked his own death. We as a family are good at that. It is almost a family tradition, but that is when we went to live with Grandfather.
Grandfather is the one that told us about our family history. Our family always puts out witches and wizards with unique magical (wandless) abilities. His is the ability to make shadow copies of himself and know what happens to them. They appear physical in all ways, can even interact with the environment. Briar has the unique ability to control and communicate with plants. Grandfather says mine is the ability to manipulate light and shadow; I say it is two abilities in one. The first half allows me to create barriers, some block spells, some can render things invisible. The second half is empathy. I am able to sense most emotions unless they are extremely well hidden. If I were to look someone in the eyes I can feel everything they are feeling in great detail, even if they are skilled at occlumency. If I look a second person in the eyes quickly enough I am able to transfer the first person's feelings onto the second person. I practiced on Grandfather and a house elf. Grandfather treats the house elves nicer now. The downside of my ability is that I don't really know how to feel my own emotions properly; well I feel the extreme ones. I guess it is like how Briar always appears to be talking to himself. Grandfather says that all strong abilities have their costs, he won't tell us what his is, but he did tell us that ours are stronger than they normally would be since our parents were both squibs. He says that squibs have access to magic but just can't use it for themselves, therefore when they have children all their magical potential is passed on and added to the child's own potential. Grandfather also says that we are lucky we were born as twins since if there was only one of us we would have ended up having four times the power in our small body instead of only two times the power that we ended up with. Sometimes though, when Briar and I are sitting next to each other, our power bleeds and mixes slightly and our abilities seem stronger.
Grandfather told us that father had wanted to defy family tradition and marry a muggle just to defy him and spite the family traditions. When Grandfather found out that mother was a squib he laughed and didn't stop laughing for hours. The house elves were apparently worried he was dying.
Our eleventh birthday was in May, that was when we got our school letters. They arrived in the same envelope whoever had sent it had kept our last names different (much to our delight). We did know they would be coming, Grandfather had been teaching us almost a life's worth of magic in only six short months and would continue teaching us until we left for school. One of the many things Grandfather taught us was that no matter what house we ended up in, or what prejudices told us; our family always did whatever they felt was right. No good, no evil, just all shades in between. I think I asked him where purple fit between good and evil. He told me that it didn't matter but I should continue to be purple. Grandfather doesn't always make sense until you think about his words for a while. It was later that Grandfather taught us to not let any weakness show to anyone until we were sure we could trust them. Our family had and probably still has enemies.
So, we passed the rest of our summer learning important skills for our upcoming classes. Briar was naturally quite skilled at herbology and also skilled at transfiguration. I was skilled at charms and flying. Then there was potions which we were passable at when separate, but together Grandfather labeled us as brilliant. I think it was one of those things that happens when our power bleeds, sometimes the recipe just wouldn't feel right, so we would do what made it feel right instead.
A few weeks before the end of summer; Grandfather told us he was proud of our progress and that we now knew as much, if not more, than any normally reared pureblood child. Then he gave us a cat.
The cat was pure black and just barely out of kittenhood. It was also extremely good at disappearing until it decided that we were trustworthy enough. In the end we called it Shadow since it was a gender-neutral name. We are pretty sure Shadow is female, but every time we try and check it's gender it was simply fade out of existence only to appear somewhere completely different. It was in the last week of summer that we discovered that Shadow could be used to deliver messages faster than an owl, unfortunately she is still a cat and sometimes it would take longer. If it wasn't for the fact that she doesn't make a loud cracking type sound, and that you don't fade with her if you are touching her, we would call what she does apparating. For lack of any better word we have deemed it fade apparating. Grandfather says he prefers to use owls to communicate but Briar thinks it is because they have a hard time locating him so he doesn't really have to be social.