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Sarai Stafford
General Information

First Name: Sarai
Last Name: Stafford
Heritage: Halfblood
Nationality: British
Spoken Languages: English
Place of Birth: Westminster, London, England
Age/Date of Birth: April 13 | 13 years old
Approved Special Features: None


Looks

Eyes: Almond shaped, brown, average size
Hair: Brown, flowing, sometimes sporting curls. It is quite long, reaching her mid-back, and is usually let down.
Height: 5' 1"
General Appearance: Sarai is about at average height and weight for her age of thirteen, standing at just over five feet, and weighing just under one hundred pounds. She is small in stature and build, not much for muscle. Her looks are mostly average, but they hint at something greater, further beauty that could be enhanced in the future. Her brown eyes compliment her lightly tanned skin and brown hair, which is sometimes kept in a pony tail, or wrapped in a handkerchief.
Dressing Style: Sarai's clothes follow her tomboyish tendencies of childhood, although in the more recent years they have gradually evolved to become more feminine. She likes the comfort of shirts and pants over dresses and skirts, however her choices of the clothing in that variety defines her clearly as a girl. She has a number of outfits, and although she doesn't actively try to fashionably coordinate them, they do end up looking relatively well together. She often dresses simple when not in her uniform, in warmer weather a tank top, close-fitting jeans and shoes, and in winter a jacket over a lighter undershirt or even a sweater, with her hair down but her head wrapped in a handkerchief spotted with Chinese characters.

Personality

General Character Traits: Sarai is curious and outgoing, never afraid to talk to someone. She is cautious, though, in trusting people with personal or intimate information. She is compassionate, eager to help people with their problems, and in most any way she can, even if she doesn't know how. Sarai is an energetic and active individual and this can sometimes generate impatience. She finds an outlet, however, in dance and music, and is able to positively release the pent-up energy.

As a child, Sarai was a bit of a tomboy, and although her entrance into puberty and adolescence has dulled the effects, she still portrays some tomboyish characteristics. Her clothing has evolved to display some feminine characteristics, and she is more comfortable in female-specific clothing, but she gives a large amount of attention to physical activities, instead of devoting her attention to obsessing over clothes and her appearance.
Likes: Sarai has many likes; the most prominent among them being b-girling (breakdancing) and listening (and obviously dancing) to Hip-hop music. Her hobbies extend further than that, though. She enjoys nature and the outdoors, not much of one to tinker with devices or mixing ingredients for potions. She enjoys dancing of any kind, although she excels at the type called b-boying/b-girling, for its fluidity of movement. Because of its ability to extend the fluidity of her movements, Sarai enjoys swimming, especially diving underwater. She has also taken to flying via broom, despite that she herself does not own one, for its thrill and for much of the same reasons as she enjoys dancing and swimming.
Dislikes: Sarai generally dislikes people who take things too seriously, and those who are completely focused on one thing, such as education. She gets frustrated with their complete dedication, and usually has to remove herself from the conversation or situation, lest she lash out verbally or physically. Other than that, Sarai's carefree attitude usually lets her brush aside most things that she finds distasteful.
Habits/Mannerisms: Still a bit tomboyish in appearance and attitude, Sarai is still a bit caught on the familiarity of her childhood tomboyishness, though her friendships can extend to either gender. She is carefree in nature, sometimes overly so, and can employ a certain nonchalance about things that do not concern her. It isn't a conscious act, like someone trying to act 'cool', simply just a carefree attitude. This is probably the foremost reasoning behind her enjoyment of dance, swimming and flying.
Strengths: Sarai is curious and eager to learn, although she is picky about what. She is intelligent, being a relatively good student, and can utilize common sense to make up for what she does not know or understand. Maturity is an area that she is improving in, and is certainly established, but not to a level comparable to an older teen or adult.
Weaknesses: Sarai's carefree attitude can often prove to be her biggest weakness. It flies directly in the face of her compassion, and she struggles at times to discern whether a situation is one that she should give assistance to, or let her nonchalance take over. It can harm her homework and her relationships with friends, yet she has managed to control it in the past to prevent any serious falling outs or failing grades.

Personal History

Parents:
-Father: Kevin Stafford (36), Half-blood (Muggle-born father), Attended Hogwarts (Gryffindor)
-Mother: Erica Stafford (36), Muggle-born, Attended Hogwarts (Hufflepuff)
Siblings:
-Sister: September (Sept. 1 | 11)
Other Relations: (All on Mother's Side)
-Grandparents: Elizabeth and Bernard Cunningham
-Aunts and Uncle: Veronica and William (Bill) Cunningham, Mary Cunningham
-Cousins: Charlotte (12), Raymond/Ray (17)
Background Story:

Family and Early Childhood:
When Kevin Stafford and Erica Cunningham met in their sixth year, it was as if they knew already that they would be married someday. It took several years after graduation, Erica's family was hoping she would marry a Muggle, still a bit unsettled by her abilities as a witch. But three years after Hogwarts, Kevin and Erica married and settled down to live in a house in Westminster, near where Erica grew up. Although Erica's family had not been happy with her decision to marry a wizard, they remained close to her, and the Staffords often graced the dinner table of Erica's family.

After almost two years, Kevin and Erica were thrilled to receive the news that they had a baby on the way. They struggled to make preparations, with Kevin's low-paying ministry job, but Erica's family helped out, and by the time the baby came, they were ready. They named their daughter Sarai, meaning "my princess," after Erica had found the name and meaning in a baby name book. She was their princess, and they tried to treat her as such, flowering her with attention and toys. Erica's family often helped out if she and Kevin both had to be out of the house, and so Sarai grew accustomed to her Muggle relations.

As Sarai grew, she did have some displays of magic, though not often when Erica's family were around. Most of it was unintentional, as most are in younger children, and much of it was harmless. The one serious event occurred on Sarai's second Christmas Eve at the Cunningham household. Erica's older brother, Bill, was sitting in the living room with the rest of the family and Sarai, who was almost asleep. He was speaking, loudly, though, and gesturing with a rolled-up newspaper. Unable to sleep, Sarai inadvertently caused the newspaper end to burst into flames, prompting screams and panicked actions from the other occupants of the room. Having no other explanation, and Sarai's small laugh and contented smile after the paper started on fire prompted her parents to explain that it had been her. Thankfully, a fire extinguisher was quickly found, and both Erica and Kevin spent the rest of the evening trying to assure Erica's family that she had meant no harm. They were a bit wary for a few weeks, but soon the event became a laughable story, and tensions eased.

It had been a few weeks prior to the Christmas event when Kevin and Erica had found out that, once again, they were expecting a child. Since the birth of Sarai, Kevin had been offered a promotion within the Ministry to a higher position in the office of Magical Equipment Control. As such, the couple had more money and ways to provide for their new child, a daughter, whom they named September after the month in which she had been born.

Sarai was not old enough to be adequately aware of the split in attention her parents now gave, and she grew close to September through the years. The girls were close to their mother's family as well, and were well exposed to Muggle devices and culture. They grew up in a blend of cultures, so to speak, learning both the wizarding culture and Muggle culture, and being able to go back and forth from each without much effort. The girls also became close to their cousin, Charlotte, who was a year younger than Sarai, and the three were together constantly when the two families visited.

Mid-to-Late Childhood:
There was a period, when she was seven years old, in which Sarai struggled to understand the differences between her household and Charlotte's. Charlotte and Ray, Charlotte's older brother, had questioned Sarai and September, curious as to why they didn't have a TV, microwave, "modern" clocks, or other Muggle-like devices. Sarai herself questioned this, and it took some time before her parents could make her understand that although the two families mixed often, Sarai was a part of a magical family that didn't use many electric-powered devices like those that Charlotte's family, a Muggle family, did, and the differences between Muggles and wizards. Her father growing up in a wizarding household (being halfblood through his mother) and her mother growing accustomed to the lack of electric devices gave the Staffords no need to utilize electric-powered devices to perform tasks; they only had few devices like a phone, television and clocks.

Equipped with her new understanding of the differences between Muggle and Wizarding folk, Sarai began a period of arrogance, in which she tried to use her magical heritage to impress or scare her cousins, followed by a brief period of jealousy for her cousins' Muggle devices. Eventually, she settled on an equilibrium, accepting that she was part of a wizarding family, and her cousins were not, but that she could be around them and act satisfied with what she had without any problems. September seemed to go through these periods as well, although only to mimic her older sister, for which she was quickly called out on.

When Ray, Sarai's cousin, joined a recreational dance group at his Muggle school that focused on Hip-Hop and breakdancing, due to their fascination with the growing American influence, Sarai became interested. She began to watch him and try to copy his moves, until an irritated Ray showed her how to perform the moves properly. She was disappointed, however, when her mother forbade her from continuing to watch and learn, after hearing the lyrics on the songs that were danced to. Sarai protested, having not even paid attention to the lyrics enough, focusing simply on the dance. When Ray's mother forced him to use music with clean lyrics as a result of her own realization, Erica relented and let Sarai continue watching and copying Ray's moves.

Despite her age, nine-year-old Sarai picked up on the moves quickly, the dance patterns becoming natural to her, as if there was more than just Ray guiding her. When her aunt suggested that Ray use some videos from the library to learn from, Sarai was quick to encourage it, and when Ray refused, requested the videos for herself. She studied them and soon learned what flaws Ray had inadvertently taught her as part of his own inexperience with the dance. The roles switched, and Sarai began to point out her cousin's mistakes and assist him with correcting them.

By the time she was ten, Sarai was able to mimic the dance moves she saw on videos, and come up with her own just by listening to the music. Although unorthodox, and a bit of an uncertainty due to her age, Ray introduced Sarai to the group at his school. After seeing her moves, they were impressed, and asked Sarai to dance with them in a few performances. Sarai was eager to accept, but her parents were wary. They were worried that their daughter was focusing too much of her time on a Muggle interest, and would shun her magical abilities when it came time for her to go to school. Arguments ensued, and eventually Kevin and Erica allowed Sarai to participate, but they warned her about letting on about her magical abilities. She understood, and kept them secret. Sarai became the youngest member of their dance team, and became a large attraction for the team, whose many fans usually only followed them for "that girl on the b-boying team."

Instead of relishing the popularity, Sarai simply shrugged it off. It didn't matter much, she enjoyed the dance and the fluidity of movement that it enabled her to use. The fans never really bothered her, although she played celebrity when it was necessary for the team. Her parents, still concerned, were glad that the popularity was not affecting Sarai's ego, or serving to place attention on her activities outside of the team or her personal life. For the most part, the fans stayed in the performance halls, only a few found their way to Ray's house, and none to her own. Kevin and Erica, thus, were satisfied, and allowed Sarai to continue her dancing.

After her eleventh birthday, however, Sarai knew it wouldn't last much longer. The school year was drawing to a close, and her parents were clear on the fact that she couldn't attend Muggle schooling or stay out of Hogwarts. Regrettably, then, Sarai said goodbye to the team at the end of May, explaining that her parents were sending her to a private school in Scotland, when the team's last performance was held. They begged her to stay, but she knew that she couldn't, even if she wanted to. She agreed, however, to practice with them in the summertime, between school years, beginning in this year. When the expected letter came from Hogwarts, Sarai's parents quickly confirmed her attendance, solidifying her departure from the Muggle world for nine months, and the separation from her b-boying team.

Hogwarts - Year One:
Sarai began school in earnest and regret, eager to meet new friends and finally have a taste of the magic her parents were able to perform, but at the same time unable to be with the friends she had made as a member of the b-boying (or in her case, b-girling) team. Still, she approached the year with an open mind, and soon found herself rewarded for that. She found classes that she liked, among them Charms and Transfiguration, although she was by far better at the former than the latter. She also encountered classes that she grew to dislike or found that her skill or attention were severely lacking. Among those would be Potions and the History of Magic, mainly because she found them boring, but also because her mind wasn't well attuned to concentrating on a single task as Potions required, or memorization and recitation as History of Magic required.

Besides classes, Sarai met new people as well, and one in particular, Michael Shepherd. She felt a bit attracted to him at first, the moments in his proximity awkward and, for the most part, silent. Michael was equally shy and distant, almost attracting her further. But her tomboyishness prevented any further development of her crush, and she soon grew comfortable with him, the two becoming fast friends. The pair spent much time together, in classes and out, as they were both in the Gryffindor house.

Sarai took the Flying Class offered to First years and immediately loved it. She found that flying was similar to the experience of dancing or swimming, even though she wasn't moving her body much. The three-dimensional movement of a broomstick in air provided much of the same experience as in water. She enjoyed the thrill as well, the risk that it presented, and the feeling she had when she felt the wind whipping around her as she moved faster than even a Muggle car normally went. Periodically, when the Quidditch teams were not practicing, Sarai would try to find a free broom that the school had for leisure activities, and fly around the school's yard, carefully avoiding the Forbidden Forest at most times.

One day in November, Sarai and Michael found a screaming yo-yo lying discarded on the floor of an empty corridor. Unaware that the Hogwarts Caretaker listed the screaming yo-yos among the many magical items banned from use or possession in the Hogwarts castle, the pair curiously examined the item. Before they could figure out much about it, they realized that classes would start again soon, and rushed to their next class. As the two attempted to hide the item, it let out a shriek, alerting the professor to the item, which was quickly confiscated. Dismayed, the two plotted to sneak back in to the professor's office and search for the item after classes were all over. As the professor headed out to dinner, Sarai and Michael snuck into the office and began to search for the yo-yo. They were nearly caught when the professor came back, but hid just in time to avoid detection.

Unfortunately for them, the professor had come back just to pick up one item before heading off to places unknown inside the castle, locking the office door while leaving. The lock was solid, unable to be opened by a simple "Alohomora" spell, and affected both sides of the door handle. After five minutes, the situation was obvious, Sarai and Michael were stuck. They waited all night for the professor to return in the morning, hoping to sneak out quietly. When morning did come, and the professor returned, they two cautiously began to make their way out, hoping to avoid detection. Their hopes were smashed when the professor cried out to them, cuing their legs to take them as fast as they could away from the room. When Sarai turned left at a junction corridor, Michael turned left, and the two became separated. Sarai made it back to the dormitory in time to get ready for classes, to find Michael absent most of the day. When he returned to the dorm that evening, she apologized to Michael, but to her surprise, he forgave her immediately, and the worried lines that had crossed her face and hands were spared from becoming a permanent mark.

When April 13th came along, Sarai was surprised by the arrival of the morning mail carried by an owl that wouldn't leave. She tried to shoo it along, but it stayed, waiting for a reply message, she figured. When she read the letter, Sarai realized that the owl was her own, a gift from her parents for her twelfth birthday. She named the owl Renite, Latin for stubborn, for the effort she had to exert to get it to leave the table to get up to the owlery, and later try to get it to leave again to send a letter back home. She soon grew fond of the bird, however, and tried to care for him as best she could.

Throughout the year, Sarai found herself conflicting with her own carefree attitude, which was able to convince her several times that dancing, flying, swimming, taking a walk, caring for Renite, talking to friends or other recreational activities were more important than her homework and tasks for classes. This affected her severely at first, causing her to cut off almost all her fun activities when she realized her grades were slipping down. When they came back up again, she soon fell into a similar routine, and another period of hard work followed to regain her former standing. By the end of the year, it was clear that this would be a point of conflict within her mind for a long time if she didn't do something about it. She didn't feel confident enough to ask the help of a teacher or student, though, even one of the older ones. And her parents didn't seem to know how to help her without completely destroying her time for fun. So her problem was suspended over the summer to resume again the following year, which by that time, she hoped, she would have a solution.

Hogwarts - Year Two:
The summer between years was spent in yearning for her new friend and school, missing the environment, the scenery and the routine. Her days were leisurely and she was able to get up at whatever time she pleased, but they were boring and uneventful, too long to be filled with nothing. She got back in contact with her b-boying team and met with them many times over the course of the summer, using the time to enjoy herself and break away from the boredom that had consumed her. It wasn't the same, however, as she was out of practice and unaware of their new routines, and being out of touch for nine months had set her back from the group's inner circle. Still, she was able to have fun, and by the end of the summer, felt comfortable once again, just in time to leave for school.

Sarai's parents had one last surprise for her before she left. Her mother had gotten a job at a shop on Diagon Alley some years back, and she had been working hard over the past several months to earn enough money to buy Sarai an enchanted boombox, like one that she used with her b-boying team to play the music, and what's more it could play Muggle tapes. She was overjoyed by the gift and treasured it from her mother, since she had worked very hard to get the gift for Sarai. It worked very much like the Muggle device, copying the design from them, but powered by magic instead of electricity. The boombox is small, only able to play one tape at a time, but does have a small radio that can tune to the Wizarding Radio stations at the tap of a wand.

When classes at Hogwarts resumed, Sarai spent the first few weeks in the common room in the evenings, set up in one corner with her boombox, which played somewhat-loud Hip-Hop music, while she practiced her b-girling moves to the song's rhythm. Many of the other students found the music obnoxious, but some tolerated it to watch her perform the breakdancing moves.

Since the previous year, Sarai had worked hard to get herself into a mindset in which she could balance her time. She didn't want to slip back into the pattern she had last year, but she wasn't willing to completely sacrifice her recreational activities, as her parents suggested to her. Dance was far too much fun, and after spending the summer with her team again, she wouldn't have given that up, even for money. Swimming and flying were fun, but she tried to do that only when she had the time, though it didn't always work out that way. Her carefree attitude continued to be a trouble for her throughout the course of the year, though never to the brink of completely flunking out as in her first year.

Sarai's classes were more difficult the second year than the first, but also more enjoyable. She knew what to expect more so than she had as a first year and having the same teachers helped greatly. She found herself excelling once more at Charms, it was easy to simply copy the professor's incantation and the wand stroke to achieve the necessary result, but still struggling at Potions and History of Magic. She hadn't liked cooking when her mother had tried to teach her, and the mindless measuring and cutting of this or that ingredient gave her mind time to wander. Too much time, on one occasion, so that her potion became a odd-smelling stew of dark liquid, not even close to the bright green that was filling the cauldrons of her peers. And the even more mindless memorization of dates and names, the two-parchment page long essays explaining how some wizard, that was hundreds of years dead, accomplished this or that task and became some hero to history (which made her wonder why she hadn't heard of them before).

Hogwarts - Year Three:
Sarai returned to Hogwarts again for a third year, much to the dismay of her sister, who became jealous over the course of the summer when she didn't receive a letter to Hogwarts. Their relationship tensed, and September tried to turn Charlotte against Sarai, for a period of two weeks, neither of the girls would let Sarai be around them. By the end of the summer, Sarai was fed up with her sister's cries of "It's only one day! How could they not let me go if it was just one day?!" and was anxious to be back at school. She missed her friend Michael and the structure and routine of classes, not to mention the absence from her jealous sister.

In her first year, Sarai had chosen Care of Magical Creatures and Muggle Studies for her elective classes, the latter almost to her surprise. However, nothing else seemed to fit her, and she thought it would be interesting to learn about Muggles from the wizarding perspective. Unfortunately, she made her own decisions on classes, and found out only later that Michael had chosen to take Arithmacy instead of her own Care of Magical Creatures class. He had signed up for Muggle Studies as well, though, and Sarai was relieved to have him in one of her classes. She soon found the classes enjoyable, even her one class without Michael, although her third year proved to be more difficult in the type of studies and amount of homework that the professors gave them, and Sarai struggled with her carefree attitude that would rather have her outside flying on a broomstick, dancing to Hip-Hop music or just talking idly instead of focusing on her classwork and lessons.

Hogwarts Sorting

Strong Area of Magic: Charms
Weak Area of Magic: Potions and History of Magic
Preferred House Choice: Gryffindor
Responsibility or Guidance?: Responsibility
Forgiveness or Justice?: Forgiveness
Adventure or Security?: Adventure
What does "Never tickle a sleeping dragon" mean to your character? Don't try to take advantage of someone's weakness, lest you be on the receiving end of an undiscovered strength of their's.

Minor Details

Pets: Renite, a male Tengmalm's Owl that Sarai received for her twelfth birthday.
Wand: 14 1/2 inches, White Poplar, Gryphon Feather
Quidditch position: Sarai would most likely be good at either the chaser or beater position.
Anything else? .: I like Penguins :. (Read: Nope)
Are You A Native English Speaker?: Yes

RP response:
The castle had seemed so foreboding when she'd first arrived; the long, cavernous halls, damp and dimly-lit dungeons, and the high towers rising up from the hill on which the school was built had proven somewhat intimidating in her first year. By this time, however, Sarai Stafford thought of it as home. Perhaps not more home than her parent's house in Westminster, with her sister and parents and cousins, uncle, aunt and grandparents just a few blocks away. But it was home away from home, her home, and a home in which she felt comfortable.

And yet, it was always full of surprises. Ducking down a side corridor she had never seen before, the girl wandered down the narrow tunnel, curious to its destination. She knew better than to act as a small child, afraid of the dark for its ability to hide the monsters and beasts of fairy tales. She knew better than to not exhibit caution, though. Even in Hogwarts, secluded from the rest of the wizarding world, there were ghosts that could pop out at you or glide through the walls as humans walked through air, startling the person observing it. And Peeves was the misfortune of all who happened upon him, and Sarai tried to avoid him as much as possible. It wasn't likely that he lurked in this corridor, though, but the possibility was there.

The darkness shrouded what was visible in the light, and so it was the refuge for many who would prefer to operate in secrecy or in a clandestine manner. Light shone in from both ends of the tunnel, and the girl could see it around the corner, though it was the flickering, orange-shaded light of the torches placed around the school, magicked to burn forever and to light and ignite in the morning and evening respectively. The light was the safe haven, for the most part. Only the stupidest people would ever try something against the rules or society in the light. Or perhaps the smartest would, operating right under the noses of those who would seek to capture them. The evasion of their efforts would increase their frustration, and decrease the confidence in those tasked with enforcing the laws and protecting the people.

It was easy to understand, then, the type of terror that gripped the magical society. Dark wizards and beasts seemed to prowl right under the noses of Ministry officials, who were either unaware or unable to capture them. The only safe place anymore, it seemed, was Hogwarts. And so when Sarai turned the corner to enter the corridor flooded with light, she breathed a sigh of relief, any of the fear that had crossed her mind as she passed through the tunnel dissipating like a cloud of dust settling onto the ground. She was safe here, and what's more, she was home.
  • Last Edit: July 06, 2007, 07:32:12 pm by The Insane Admin