Early lifeSarah Wipowski Norman was born at 2.14 p.m., January 25th, 1984 in a local Muggle hospital in Tacoma, Washington. Her parents were both Pure-Bloods, but had made the decision to live without magic, believing that it brought nothing but complications, and elevated levels of risk. They were, however, willing to "massage" their own rule to hide and suppress Sarah's natural magical self-expression. She moved things, and they whisked them back with a wand flick before she noticed. She filled a glass with orange juice from the top shelf of the fridge, and they collapsed the shelf, but cast an NV Protego first, so none of the flying debris hit her. Seven-year-old Sarah was as close to non-magical as a non-Squib of a Pure-Blood lineage could be.
Unfortunately, her best friend Allie chased a kitten out into traffic that summer, and Sarah let out a yell which her latent powers amplified; her parents reacted on instinct, casting a Protego around the little blonde girl out in front of the car. Sarah's Sonorus scream rebounded off the shield - and became the last sound she ever heard. Her hearing was shattered beyond even magical repair, and she was sent by her parents to St. Mungo's, in the hope that this institution, in combination with other London facilities such as Great Ormond Street, might be able to work the miracle that had thus far eluded them. Sadly, it was not to be, but Sarah's magic manifested in leaps and bounds, and before long she was attending tuition sessions in magic, although only nine at this time. Her speaking skills had degraded, but the "Janus Thickey" ward (long-term spell damage) determined that Sarah was able to "envision" her spells in such detail that it bypassed the necessity for verbalisation. Sarah casts NV versions as naturally as others put them into words, and her art and Wizard Art likewise express the puissance and pulchritude of her palette of emotions. Sarah's parents never owned up to the casting of the Protego, and to this day Sarah herself believes that her scream shielded her friend, thus reducing her overall anger at her loss of hearing, which she feels was a price worth paying for Allie's life.
The path to enlightenmentHogwarts seemed a natural choice, her parents wanted her at Salem Institute, where they could visit more easily (still, indeed more than ever, striving to exclude magic from their lives), but in the end, and on the advice of St. Mungo's healers, she plumped for Durmstrang, where serious accidents are almost de rigueur. She went in Side-Along Apparition with Healer Pyle, who had overseen much of her course of treatment, and had taught her two forms of sign language, ASL and BSL, and arrived in the frozen North on September 1st, 1995, as rumors swirled in Britain of the Dark Lord's renewed rise. Durmstrang proved to be the making of Sarah, as she could explain her difference any number of ways, depending on her day and mood. She made good friends among those who thought that learning should not be fettered by labels, but retained a healthy respect for the dangers, both inherent and insidious, in what are labelled the Dark Arts. The small gang to which she belonged expressed themselves in a variety of ways, but always with a mixture of science and artistry, and this was the nourishing memory she would carry away from her school days. Sarah seemed like a good thing to the boys of Durmstrang when she blossomed, a good looker who couldn't spoil it all with endless chatter, but her questions, though often confined within her mind, were not limited by her stilted speech, and her curiosity about people was as boundless as her enthusiasm for the rest of the smorgasbord of life.
Follow the yellow sick toadSarah discovered, in her very last term at Durmstrang, a splash-back poison frog which some Durmstranger had brought in, probably to perform unpleasant experiments on. The creature made a sound by inflating its throat sack which went beyond the acoustic, and Sarah "felt" it in a way she had believed she never would again. It was a process she could envision and duplicate, and Sarah rapidly discovered that many creatures, from reindeer to crickets, produced sounds which "resonated" within her, and which, through her magic and self, she could replicate. This tendency took her to Salem Institute for its graduate-level Animagus and Animals study course, and Sarah emerged from the long tunnel of tuition as a fully qualified Animagus Trainer, only to discover there was - at that time - no work for such, there being something of a glut in the market. She therefore refocused on the other half of her education, and became a Magical Pet Psychiatrist, a wonder-worker with bamboozled baboons and paranoid peacocks alike. She drifted in and out of numerous relationships, meaningful and less so, and now, as she has hit the big 3-0, Sarah is taking stock of her life, and looking for a new challenge.
Hogwarts and the new world (of teaching)A chance encounter with Ailred Birch in "The Leaky Cauldron" led to Sarah applying for the post as Professor of Wandlore at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, teaching the older students. Headmaster Kinsel also offered her the Animagi Trainer post, which she couldn't resist, given her background. Her room-mates have increased in number since she moved into the Gamekeeper's Hut, but she also uses the Animagi Trainer's Office for those who don't want the experience in 3D and SurroundSmell. So far, she's enjoying the experience far more than she ever expected, and really loves hearing students' ideas, however tangential. She finds herself struck at odd, but frequent moments, though, by thoughts of Juliya, the Ukrainian Ironbelly she had to send to Romania, and with whom she feels a bond out of all proportion to the 47 minutes they spent together. She has met an unusual student who doesn't seem to speak, and has found what she feels to be her niche. Her room-mates are earning their keep too, helping the students of the Animagi course see the world from a variety of angles. She is beginning to feel like a teacher. Juliya's arrival at the school has somehow made it feel more like home than any place before, and Sarah feels as if, for the first time in her life, she might be able to put down roots. She's finally identifying with Hogwarts. Sarah was seriously contemplating taking the Serum herself, and attempting to take on Juliya's form. In the end, however, and much against her inclination, she let her serpentine soulmate flap off into the sunset alone.
Becoming Deputy Headmistress was fine, but Sarah was shocked and devastated by the sudden disappearance of Amadorus Kinsel. One creative outlet for her distress, however, yielded the following.
Humans, as Sarah sees them.