Canon: Not epilogue compliant
Disclaimer: These characters do not belong to me. They are the property of JK Rowling. No infringement intended.
Author's Notes: Hopelandic is a made-up language (created by the band Sigur Ros) which the sound of the word is a meaning and a story to each individual. This was written for the 2010 Draco Big Bang.
He was having one of those ‘every day is exactly the same’ days, so when he left his office at the Ministry of Magic, Draco Malfoy decided to stop in the Three Broomsticks for a pint or perhaps some firewhisky. Perhaps both – he had not decided yet. The difference was that it was not just any other day. Yes, it was a Saturday, and he’d put in a full day anyhow because he was behind in his work, but that was not why today was different. It was Draco’s birthday and he was thirty, so he was feeling a bit melancholy. Self pity was a weakness, and he was not about to show that to anyone. He apparated from the alley near the Ministry directly to Hogsmeade and hurried inside the pub.
Draco had not been inside since he was still at Hogwarts. Nothing much had changed with the noted exception of Madam Rosmerta not being there, but Draco had no desire to see her again. The atmosphere was a bit more rough and tumble these days with the MacDougals running it. Draco was certain he’d been in the same year as one of them. The girl one. Morag? A Ravenclaw? He couldn’t recall. People called her Mac or MacDougal. She’d been Blaise Zabini’s girlfriend for a time.
It seemed that she was helping out, though - at least musically. Draco looked at the raven-haired woman playing the violin as he walked in. If he was recalling properly, the Ravenclaw girl had played the violin. Then again, he could be confused. Blaise had had so many girlfriends in school it was difficult to keep track.
Draco sat in a booth near the back. He could still hear the music, and no one would be able to see him directly. His blonde head still got him all sorts of unwanted attention, as did the Dark Mark still on his left arm. It was a permanent reminder of his foolishness and lack of knowing his own mind about things. Thankfully he no longer had such problems. People might not agree with his thoughts, but at least they were his own thoughts to be disagreed with and not someone else’s.
A shaggy Scottish man in a kilt of blue tartan took his order and brought Draco a pint of what was on tap shortly after. He didn’t really drink it, per se, but more held the mug and listened to the music. Narcissa had probably floo’d him several times by now, but he was in no mood for his mother’s coddling tonight. He adored the woman, but she could be a bit smothering. She had already owled him twice today thus far – once to send chocolates and once to just send a happy birthday note. He loved his mother, but honestly, he wasn’t a first year anymore.
His secretary was the only other person who remembered what day it was. Not that Draco expected anyone to. After leaving Hogwarts in the way he had, he was rather fortunate to even have the friends he did have.
Draco was uncertain how long he’d been sitting there staring into his mug when someone spoke to him, but it was enough to startle him slightly.
“Would you mind? Everywhere else is full.”
He looked around. The pub had filled up without his notice. Draco gestured to the seat across from him without even really looking at who had spoken to him. He didn’t care. He’d become quite good at ignoring everything outside himself over the years. That particular ‘talent’ being the main reason neither his relationship with Pansy nor the one with Astoria had lasted. In fact, things with Tori had ended so badly that her sister Daphne still got pinched in anger when she spotted Draco.
“Malfoy?” the person across from him whispered.
Draco looked up and frowned. She looked vaguely familiar, but he could not place her. Her long blonde hair was woven into a braid that had fallen over one shoulder. Then it hit him like cold water.
Owl eyes of a pale blue-gray, butterbeer cork necklace, wand behind one ear, did a stint in the Malfoy Manor cellar.
His palms actually started to sweat a little as they always did when he ran into someone he or someone in his family had harmed in the war.
“Hello, Lovegood,” he replied – for lack of anything else to say.
“I didn’t know you came here.”
Draco’s brows knitted together. She was speaking to him like his father hadn’t tossed her in the cellar and kept her prisoner for months. Draco could not figure out why.
“I usually don’t.”
It had been a very long time since he was made so uncomfortable under a person’s stare that he wished the ground would open up and swallow him, but he wished it now. He’d never noticed how intense that stare of hers could be. It was as if it were digging into him.
“What made you come in tonight?”
“What made you?” Draco snapped, a bit defensive.
She just smiled enigmatically at him. It only seemed to fuel Draco’s irritation.
“I live in Hogsmeade. The MacDougals are friends,” Luna replied. “I usually come in here most nights to have supper. I’m a terrible cook unless it's soup. It’s probably why my potions always turned out so soupy.”
The last sentence was said in a distracted manner, as if it only just occurred to her. Draco found his brows furrowing, but he made no move to leave. He should have. He had no idea why he did not.
“So you know why I am here. Now, do stop evading. Why are you?”
Draco’s furrowed brow turned into a full scowl. He would not have figured her for being able to keep track of what he had or had not answered. She seemed so dreamy all the time. Or she had in school - almost as if she were floating by and not really of this world.
Then again, he didn’t really know her. Perhaps that was all a ruse so that she might observe unnoticed. It would be a clever ruse, indeed.
“I felt like a drink.”
He punctuated that statement by tipping his glass up and finishing what was left in it.
The music suddenly turned lively and people were shouting and clapping. A part of Draco he thought he’d long buried surfaced suddenly.
“And now I feel like a dance.”
He did not even give her a chance to refuse. Draco grabbed her arm and pulled her to her feet. In the next moment, they were dancing very lively jig with most of the Scots in the pub. Luna Lovegood’s eyes were as wide as Draco had ever seen them. He was impressed that despite her apparent shock her feet were keeping time with his nicely. He’d only done this to make her uncomfortable, but she was really a good dancer. She was also quite light, so flinging her about to the beat wasn’t much of a chore. Draco found himself quite pleased that she just seemed to be going with it.
“You never told me what you’re doing here,” Lovegood managed almost breathlessly.
He’d never in his life know what actually made him answer her honestly. “Today is my birthday.”
She stopped dancing. Draco steered them to the side to avoid being trampled.
“What,” he snapped.
“You just don’t seem like the sort to spend his birthday having a drink alone, is all.” She made a face. “And then dancing with a woman you don’t even like at all. It’s odd.”
Draco laughed at that. Not his fake laugh either. It was a great belly laugh that made his eyes water. Luna Lovegood was calling him odd. That was rich.
“I don’t find it very funny, Malfoy,” she said in that dreamy tone of hers.
That just made Draco laugh harder. “Draco.”
“Call me Draco. It’s my name.”
She blinked owlishly in her confusion. Draco was thinking his drink had been spiked or something. He was acting very oddly, he’d agree, and he could not seem to stop himself. It was different. Everything about tonight had been different so far, and he found it very refreshing. It was as if being slightly off and spontaneous had breathed new life into him.
“Let’s dance again.”
“I think you should see a healer. You’re being very odd.”
He laughed again.
The dancing stayed vigorous, and though she protested, Luna Lovegood did not refuse dancing with him in the end. She even started drinking with him. The dancing was tiring, and they needed to cool off after. It was not too terribly long into this pattern that Draco was quite inebriated.
His night ended with vague fragments of singing off-key, more dancing and kissing someone.
Draco awoke the next morning with a splitting headache. He stretched without opening his eyes, wondering what time it was. His eyes snapped open when his hand brushed across naked skin not his own.
There was a woman in the bed with him. She was all blonde hair and pale skin. Flawless skin. There was a butterfly tattooed across her back between her shoulder blades. It was purple and black ink. Draco reached out and touched it. The woman sighed in sleep.
A quick glance told him he was naked. Another glance told him they were not in his flat. He was trying to think of who she might be. The only person he could recall talking to after work was Loony Lovegood. Draco’s eyes went wide. He looked at the pale back with the butterfly again – and all that golden hair.
“Bloody buggering fuck,” Draco whispered through his teeth.
Had he really gotten that pissed last night? So pissed he’d slept with Luna Lovegood?
She groaned and rolled over onto her back. Draco was awarded with a nice view of her bare breasts before she was awake enough to take in the situation. She shrieked and pulled the sheet over her body.
“Well, good morning,” Draco said.
He was sure his eyes were just as wide as hers were right now.
“I… we… oh, dear.”
“So it would seem,” Draco said.
She sat up with a groan, sheet clutched to her chest. Draco took the opportunity to look at the curve of her back. She really was a handsome woman when you got past all of the oddness. It was no wonder he’d slept with her. She had a long and lean build. She looked delicate, but he knew she wasn’t. The slight pains and aches he had this morning also told him she was in no way delicate.
Draco watched as she started to get out of the bed and wrap the sheet around her. This pulled the sheet off of him.
Draco grabbed the sheet and pulled it back. Lovegood screeched as she toppled back into the bed.
“I need to get my clothes and get out of here,” she protested.
“And I don’t?”
He should have been a gentleman and let her have the sheet, but Draco was feeling bratty. She shocked him by shrugging and stepping out of the bed without a stitch on. All she was wearing as her hair. His mouth opened slightly in surprise as he watched her snatch up various articles of her clothing from the floor.
He didn’t know people were really that free. It was fearless. Draco envied it. As much as he liked to think he was out from under his former life, he knew he was not. There were still things he refused to do, things he thought he could not do.
Draco’s eyes narrowed as she slipped her dress over her head. He threw back the sheet and stepped out of the bed. He stalked up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist. She went rigid. He could not have explained this. Only that the alcohol had dulled his reserve and he wanted to recall what he could of this. Draco moved her hair out of the way and kissed that bit of skin that was not quite shoulder but no longer neck.
“What are you doing?” she asked softly.
He couldn’t see them, but he could imagine how wide her eyes were. It was all there in the shocked tone of her voice.
“Don’t know exactly,” Draco murmured.
“Well, stop it,” Lovegood said, shoving out of his arms.
She spun around to give him what-for, Draco was certain of that, but she just stopped. She was staring at him as if she had never clapped eyes on him before.
Draco looked down. “I am.”
“Have you been bitten by a wandering willybogg? It causes people to prefer nakedness. It makes your clothes feel itchy.”
“I don’t think I’m naked because my clothes were feeling itchy.”
“No, likely not. You should get dressed. We’ll be needing to leave.”
Draco made a face.
“We’re in a room above the Three Broomsticks. We need to get out of here before the place fills up.”
“Embarrassed,” Draco snapped.
“Rarely if ever,” she replied in her dreamy tone. “But I would think you would be after having spent the night with Loony Lovegood.”
“It all right if I call you Luna?” Draco asked, annoyance welling up within him.
Sure, he’d been calling her that in his own head, but that was his head. No one heard it. Only he was allowed to use that deplorable nickname. No one else. Not even her.
Draco’s brow furrowed. What was wrong with him?
“What? Did you want me to say no? Very well then. You may not call me Luna.”
Draco scowled at her. “Don’t call yourself a loony, Luna.”
Something happened to her face just then. Draco didn’t quite know what to make of it. It was as if she suddenly softened, and it should not please him for her to have such a look and be pointing it in his general direction. Draco Malfoy did not do soft looks.
There was a noise in the hall that broke the moment.
Luna picked up his trou and threw them at him. “Get dressed.”
Draco followed Luna down the stairs. Yes, she was Luna now. Ever since saying her name aloud, she was no longer Lovegood in his head. They made it to the bottom and rounded the corner out into the pub. The MacDougal who owned the place was grinning from ear to ear at them.
Luna stopped suddenly and Draco bumped into her. He started scowling and nudged her forward, but she was looking at the bar. Draco looked up and followed her line of sight. He cringed mentally. Potter, Weasley the gorilla and Longbottom didn’t look pleased with him at all.
“See, Harry,” the bartender said. “The lass is just fine.”
Weasley was already getting up and knocking over his barstool in his haste. Luna backed up some more, and Draco involuntarily moved her behind him. Longbottom made a face like a dog hearing a high-pitched sound at that gesture. Luna had a hold of one of Draco’s arms and was peering around his body. Even though Draco was pretty sure she was not the one who was about to get the thrashing, Draco took a protective stance.
“Ron,” Potter said in a warning tone.
“Now see here, Weasley,” MacDougal began. “I willna have ya makin’ a fuss in m’pub. I’m offended ya thin’ I would let harm come to Luna. She an’ m’sister have been friends for years.”
“Wha’ th’fock is this then?”
Draco blinked. It was Morag MacDougal, and she was addressing Potter. For such a tiny woman she did look a bit menacing. She was all raven hair and glares right now.
“I dinna owl ya Luna were here for ya to all come to m’brother’s pub and start tearin’ up th’place. She dinna do nothin’ she dinna wan’ las’ nigh’, so back down. I jus’ dinna wan’ ya t’worry.”
“Was that English,” he whispered.
Luna pinched him.
Everyone else had stopped and they were looking at Draco and Luna. Draco shot them all a saccharine smile before turning his back to the crowd and looking down at her.
“I suppose I should walk you home.”
Weasley was not agreeable to that. “Luna-“
“That would be lovely, Draco. Thank you.”
He offered his arm in an exaggerated gesture with a smirk on his face. Luna blinked at him with her buggy eyes before slipping her arm in his. They left the pub with several people looking on in surprise.
As they started down the main street in Hogsmeade, Luna tried to pull her arm from his. Draco glared at her and held it there.
“You don’t have to walk me home. I know you only did it to make Harry, Ron and Neville mad.”
“Longbottom didn’t look particularly mad. He looked confused, nothing new there, and I am walking you home because I feel like it. The fact that Potter and Weasley are upset about it is just a bonus.”
She giggled at that.
Draco had no idea what he was doing. This was not him. He’d gotten piss-arse drunk, slept with a woman he wouldn’t have bothered to insult on a normal day and now he was missing work to walk said woman home. He should probably owl in.
“Have you an owl or a floo I might borrow? I do believe I am very late for work.”
“I have an owl.”
“Or we could stop in at the post office,” Luna suggested, nodding in that direction.
Draco steered them that way.
The little old woman running the post today was grinning knowingly at Luna. Draco was making a big show of saying aloud what he was writing to his secretary so that was likely the reason for the grinning.
“It’s Sunday, you know," Luna said in a matter-of-fact tone. "You work on Sundays? I thought the Ministry was mostly closed on Sundays.”
“I do if I need to catch up.”
Draco tapped the quill against his chin and considered what to write.
“My dear Miss Penshaw, I will not be in to work today given the fact that I got quite drunk and had relations with a beautiful woman last night. Please make my excuses to the higher-ups, and take an early day yourself. Sincerely, Draco Malfoy.”
Luna’s eyes were wide. “You did not really write that.”
Draco showed her that he had. Daisy Penshaw was not just his secretary. She was his friend. He could write those sorts of things to her.
Luna grabbed for the parchment. “You can’t send that.”
Draco evaded her. It was as if he were back in school again, damn Hogsmeade and its magic. He laughed and held the parchment away.
“It isn’t as if I told her it was you, Luna. Daisy’s a friend.”
He still could not figure out what was making him act so undignified, but Draco was having too pleasant a time to really care anymore. He could not even recall the last time he'd felt like he did not have a care in the world. It was probably before he started Hogwarts. He was going to do some shopping in Hogsmeade, and he planned to ask Luna Lovegood to go with him.
She looked like she could not decide if what she was doing was a good thing or a very bad mistake.
“You didn’t have to say yes, you know,” he mentioned when they walked into the Hogsmeade branch of Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes.
She turned and walked backwards to speak to him. Draco liked that. It was very little girl, and there were many elements to Luna Lovegood that were little girl. Instead of finding them annoying, he was amused, intrigued even.
“Didn’t I? When you ask things, you do it in such a tone that you might as well add ‘I double dog dare you’ after it. You practically challenged me to come along with you, Draco.”
And she had not backed down.
“I always speak like that. Rather unfortunate that you took it for a dare and that’s the only reason you’re here.”
“I didn’t say that was the only reason.”
“Yes… oh,” she replied with an enigmatic smile before turning and skipping down an aisle.
Draco blinked. She had just skipped. Why wasn't that annoying to him? It should be. It should irritate the hell out of him.
“You’re not going to tell me,” he said with a bit of whine as he trailed after her.
George Weasley was glaring a hole in him. They would happen to come in on a day he was here.
“No,” Luna replied. “I am not.”
“That’s really not fair.”
“Are you going to pout because I am not giving you something you want?”
Draco glared at her. How did she know him so well already?
“Is he bothering you, Luna?” Weasley asked.
Draco rolled his eyes and resisted the urge to growl.
“No, George. Thank you.”
Draco turned and flashed a nasty smirk at the Weasley.
“That wasn’t very nice.”
Draco snorted. “Did you forget who you’re talking to?”
He held out his arm to her. She took it as they exited the shop. Draco barely resisted the urge to stick his tongue out at George Weasley - who was still glaring a hole in him. They set out upon the main street in Hogsmeade.
“I seem to recall last night that you mentioned it was your birthday. This was after many drinks.”
Draco didn’t comment on that.
“So I was wondering… there’s this Muggle tradition.”
“Yes,” Draco prompted warily.
“Did anyone… spank you yesterday?”
He stopped walking and turned to face her fully. “What?”
He’d never even heard of such a thing.
“I am going to assume by that blank expression that it is a no on the birthday spankings.”
She moved suddenly and started slapping his bum with her hand.
“Hey! Oi! Bloody hell!”
Draco jumped away trying to evade her. Luna grabbed his shirt sleeve and continued trying to administer his spanking.
“How old are you,” she shouted. “That’s how many you get!”
“Leave off! Stop that!”
People were stopping to stare. Narcissa Malfoy would be mortified if she saw this behavior. He was grappling with a witch who was trying to spank him on a public street. Draco was having fun, though. Best. Day. Ever.
He was still laughing when they lost their balance and went toppling into the street. Draco turned them so that he took the brunt of the impact. He might not use them all the time, but he did possess manners.
After collecting themselves, they finished shopping and had a rather pleasant day. More pleasant than Draco could have possibly expected.
“Are you out of you mind?”
Draco looked at his best friend and raised one eyebrow. Blaise could be so dramatic. He’d burst into Draco’s flat like a tornado hex.
He usually enjoyed his personal days and weekends. Sometimes Draco did not even get out of his pajamas on Saturdays. Today certainly was not Saturday, but he’d taken a personal day to recover from his unexpected birthday weekend. He had his tea and read the paper or a book. It was his quiet time.
That was obviously out today.
“Do come in, then. What on earth is up your bum today? What have I done to irritate you now?”
Blaise made a face before slapping a copy of the Daily Prophet down on the table where Draco had been having his morning tea. Draco scanned the page and saw nothing of import. The main article was about Scarhead. He looked at Blaise and shrugged.
Blaise pointed, his finger thumping the table underneath hard.
Draco peered. There was a tiny blurb about… HIM BEING ENGAGED TO LUNA LOVEGOOD.
He slapped his palms on the table as if to steady himself and looked up at Blaise with eyes that probably rivaled Luna’s in their surprise.
“My… mother…” Draco managed.
“Is going to give birth to kneazles,” Draco whispered in horror.
Just then his floo roared to life.
“DRACO ORION MALFOY!”
“I’m not engaged,” he said in a panic, turning to face the fireplace and his mother’s angry head in it. “I don’t know where they got the idea! I’ll take care of it!”
His mother huffed in anger and closed the floo connection.
“Bollocks,” Draco muttered.
The next family dinner was going to be a tad uncomfortable.
“Do you know how they got the idea, Drake?”
Draco wiped a hand over his face and muttered his answer.
“Pipe up, Princess. I don’t speak gibberish.”
“All right,” Draco said holding up his hands and preparing.
Blaise sighed and sat down at the chair across from him.
“I might have gotten really pissed on my birthday and slept with her. Then I might have spent the next day playing hooky from work and walking all over Hogsmeade with her, which was, you know, yesterday. She might have tried to give me birthday spankings in public.”
Blaise sat back in his chair, mouth hanging open in slight shock. “Birthday spankings?”
“It’s this Muggle thing. They play slap-arse for how many years you are.”
“How come I am just now hearing about this? Why couldn’t THAT have been taught in Muggle Studies? I might have liked the sodding class then.”
It was silent again.
Something seemed to occur to Blaise. “You slept with her?”
“Yeah,” Draco answered. “But don’t recall any of it. Might not have happened. I was really pissed. Might have even been too pissed to…” Draco made an obscene hand gesture.
Blaise started chuckling.
“This isn’t funny.”
“It’s a little funny. She’s a Ravenclaw.”
“Pot calling the cauldron black? You were with a girl from every house, and you married a Hufflepuff. A HUFFLEPUFF, Blaise.”
“I’ll say,” Draco said. “She’d have to be to put up with you.”
“If we’re going to stay discussing my marriage, which I have warned you about, I am going to be taking out my wand and hexing your face off. Lovegood might not like that.”
“I haven’t a clue what she likes. Except for weird creatures.”
“Well, I think you ought to know more about your new girlfriend, Malfoy.”
“Oh, fuck off. She’s not my sodding girlfriend.”
“No, according to the Prophet, she’s your fiancée.”
Draco glared at him, and Blaise started laughing.
He had just died down to snickers when the door to the flat slammed open again.
“Were you even going to sodding tell me about this, you wanking pillock?”
Blaise and Draco both looked up as Pansy swept into the flat with a crumpled copy of the Prophet in her hand. Draco pinched the bridge of his nose as Blaise started laughing again.
“It’s not funny, Blaise,” Pansy Parkinson snapped, hitting her friend with the crumpled paper. “And don’t you ‘hello, Pans’ me, Draco Malfoy. I’ll hex you… in something more disturbing than your face. Explain this, this instant.”
She threw the paper on the table. Right next to the one Blaise had put there.
“It’s a mistake. I am not marrying anyone.”
Pansy turned. “HA! You bitches owe me three galleons!”
Draco was making a face of confusion as his door opened a third time and the Greengrass sisters breezed in.
“You three bet on this?” Draco asked incredulously.
“I just figured on you settling down eventually, darling,” Astoria replied. “Daphs just backed me up, but Pansy was right. Wild oats and all.”
“Wild oats?” Blaise said. “He’s not the one shagging Marcus Bastard Flint six ways to Sunday.”
Draco sighed and began banging his head on the table.
“His middle name is not bastard,” Astoria snapped.
“Do let’s start this again,” Daphne snapped, tossing some wild strawberry blonde hair over her shoulder.
It was the exact shade of her younger sister’s hair, but Astoria’s looked more kempt.
“Draco, do you have any firewhisky?”
“For fuck’s sake, Daphne,” Pansy snapped. “It’s only ten in the morning.”
“Same place it always is, Greengrass.”
Funny how he called her Greengrass, but Astoria was always Tori. Not even when he’d been seeing Astoria did he call Daphne by her name.
“So what are we going to do about this?”
Draco frowned and looked at Pansy. “Why do we have to do anything about it? It’s a mistake. They print a retraction. No big deal.”
Pansy gave him what was commonly referred to in their circle of friends as the basilisk look. Blaise started laughing again, and Daphne was drinking his Ogden’s Old right from the bottle. Draco banged his head on the table yet again.